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What is a comparision and contrast between the poems "To His Coy Mistress" by...

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bklyn | Student | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted November 5, 2008 at 12:10 AM via web

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What is a comparision and contrast between the poems "To His Coy Mistress" by Andrew Marvell and "To Virgins, to Make Much of Time"?

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ms-mcgregor | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 5, 2008 at 1:55 AM (Answer #1)

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Both poems reflect the ancient Roman idea of "Carpe Diem" or "sieze the day". They both encourage women to live life to the fullest each day since life does not last forever. Herrick addresses all "virgins" or young women. Since Herrick was a priest, he encourages women to marry before it's too late. Marvell was a bachelor and most people assume that he is addressing only one woman. There is no mention of marriage in his admonition to become like "amorous birds of prey." But both he and Herrick seem to emphasize the idea that pleasure should not be delayed because death is inevitable.

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