At a glance:
John Keats’s poem “On the Sonnet” examines that poetic form, especially its structural demands and restrictions. The poet begins by positing the necessity of “dull rhymes,” which he feels chain “our English” and “fetter” the sonnet. He offers next the image of Andromeda, or “pained loveliness”; Ovid tells of this beautiful maiden being chained to a rock by Jupiter to pay for her mother’s excessive boasting. Here Keats compares the confinement of the lovely and innocent Andromeda with the sweet beauty of poetry being fettered by the demands of...
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