Questions and Answers for John Donne

John Donne

The term "metaphysical" as originally coined by Dr. Johnson was intended to be used as a pejorative. By the time Johnson came to write his Lives Of The Most Eminent English Poets,the works of the...

Latest answer posted September 24, 2017 11:44 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

In this meditation, Donne asserts that all humans are interconnected. What happens to one person affects everyone else, because we are all part of God's kingdom and creation. Donne writes, Any...

Latest answer posted April 6, 2020 1:32 am UTC

3 educator answers

John Donne

In the poem “The Sun Rising” by English poet John Donne, the features of metaphysical poetry are quite apparent. First, Donne is engaging in an intellectual but conjectural conversation with the...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2015 5:19 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

The poem is a love song written from the perspective of a woman who is in love. She is upset because after a night spent with her lover, he will now awaken and leave her because daylight has...

Latest answer posted February 18, 2020 4:55 am UTC

4 educator answers

John Donne

You could also interpret this poem as a commentary on the way we present ourselves to others; as we develop relationships we are casting ourselves in shadow, hiding our true selves from the other...

Latest answer posted February 9, 2016 7:37 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

The final lines of John Donne's poem or meditation are especially striking. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee. The construction of the sentence seems a...

Latest answer posted June 28, 2015 9:37 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

"No man is an Iland, intire of it selfe; every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as...

Latest answer posted May 13, 2007 7:45 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In the first stanza, the speaker discusses how he first experienced romantic love in abstract form, as a desire for love. However, a desire for love could not, by itself, satisfy him. The speaker...

Latest answer posted June 25, 2019 12:50 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

This is one of Donne's most famous poems, addressing Death as a personified being and suggesting that, ultimately, he has no power at all. A rough "translation" into modern English might be...

Latest answer posted December 7, 2018 6:47 am UTC

3 educator answers

John Donne

Truly it were an excusable covetousness if we did, for affliction is a treasure, and scarce any man hath enough of it. No man hath affliction enough that is not matured and ripened by and made fit...

Latest answer posted October 13, 2009 11:38 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Donne uses an extended metaphor of a book's chapter to represent an individual's life. Our whole life is presented by Donne as a story written down in a great book. However, our lives are not the...

Latest answer posted October 29, 2018 11:36 am UTC

3 educator answers

John Donne

"The Canonization," by John Donne, is an argument. In this argument the speaker presents a logical and persuasive defense of his love. He speaks to a listener who has criticized the speaker's...

Latest answer posted August 27, 2015 3:01 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Donne's poetry is of the Metaphysical school. It's a kind of pre-Romantic poetry similar to the Elizabethans', namely Shakespeare's, who used many conceits and extended metaphors like Donne....

Latest answer posted May 2, 2010 10:04 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In so-called metaphysical poetry such as Donne's, a conceit is an elaborate metaphor in which two dissimilar things are compared over the course of a poem. In "Death, Be Not Proud" the relevant...

Latest answer posted July 17, 2019 8:15 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In John Donne's "The Sun Rising," one figure of speech that is used several times is the rhetorical question. For example, in the opening lines of the poem, the speaker asks the sun why it always,...

Latest answer posted December 28, 2019 9:53 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

John Donne's "A Hymn to God the Father" is characteristic of the wit and passion displayed in metaphysical poetry. The poem is a prayer made by the speaker to god for forgiveness of his sins. The...

Latest answer posted August 20, 2011 7:30 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

John Donne's poem "The Good-Morrow" is part of his Songs and Sonnets published in 1633, and although he called this a sonnet, the poem is 21 lines long rather than 14 and is a mix of iambic...

Latest answer posted November 1, 2015 2:17 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

One theme that weaves through the majority of John Donne's works is love or romance. He was unique in his era for being fairly straightforward in his notions and descriptions of sex, with many...

Latest answer posted July 30, 2019 8:20 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

The essential feature of metaphysical poetry is its use of the conceit: an extended, elaborated metaphor in which two very unlike things, which hardly anyone would have thought to equate, are...

Latest answer posted December 8, 2019 6:02 am UTC

3 educator answers

John Donne

Imagery is describing using the five sense of sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch. If you can see, hear, taste, smell, or touch an item in a poem, then it is an image. In this poem, Donne's...

Latest answer posted February 6, 2019 5:26 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

Lyrical poems use figurative language to express deeply felt emotion. They also have a musical quality, as if they could be sung, and they usually have a distinct meter. A lyrical poem is different...

Latest answer posted May 22, 2018 1:51 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

In the poem, John Donne personifies death and addresses this “person,” using the poetic device called “apostrophe.” Donne throughout contrasts the mortal person and the immortal soul, using several...

Latest answer posted February 2, 2019 3:27 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

"The Legacy," a poem written by John Donne, a poet during the reign of James I in England, is a love poem. This is a lovely poem about how much the speaker loves the woman in his life. He first...

Latest answer posted February 15, 2011 4:24 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

With regard to the first sentence in "Meditation 17”, John Donne means that someone may have death at their door and not even really know it. The first line of Meditation 17 reads: “Perchance he...

Latest answer posted March 29, 2016 12:48 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Recurring themes are found throughout Donne's work. The younger Donne tended to pose as something of a rake, writing witty poems of satire and seduction. He belongs to the group of poets often...

Latest answer posted December 11, 2018 6:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Samuel Johnson coined the term "metaphysical" in the 18th century to describe a certain group of 17th century poets who Johnson rightly believed defied classical norms in poetry by writing...

Latest answer posted March 27, 2016 5:27 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

It is important to note how John Donne is actually being quite counter-cultural in this poem. In contrast with other Renaissance songs that idealise women, this song satirises them using hyperbole...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2010 9:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

The Sun Rising is a monologue to the Sun, in which the narrator both exalts it and insults bringing with it a lot of descriptive and emotive language that gears towards the necessity of the Sun in...

Latest answer posted May 17, 2010 11:57 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

The theme of "The Good- Morrow" by Donne rests with the idea that true love is a spiritual connection that two people share. Donne uses many ideas to convey this theme. The most compelling of...

Latest answer posted July 29, 2009 8:16 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In his poem "The Good Morrow," Donne's main vehicle to describe his vision of love is spatial; he uses many maps, globes, and locations in the poem, and they are his way of understanding the nature...

Latest answer posted November 2, 2010 12:00 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

John Donne’s poem, “Death, be not proud,” focuses on death as a transitory state between life and what comes after life. In the poem, the speaker personifies and then chastises death, explaining...

Latest answer posted March 16, 2016 6:14 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In "A Farewell to Love" the speaker expresses both awareness and remorse at his seemingly insatiable sexual appetite. This dissolute young man appears regretful of the way in which he's worshipped...

Latest answer posted November 22, 2018 12:09 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

Donne was a cleric (priest) in the Church of England and rose through the hierarchy to become the Dean of London's St. Paul's Cathedral. He is known for sleeping in a coffin to remind himself of...

Latest answer posted October 9, 2019 2:35 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Samuel Johnson said of metaphysical poetry: [In it, t]he most heterogeneous ideas are yoked by violence together Johnson's is an unflattering way of putting it, but Donne's metaphysical imagery...

Latest answer posted July 25, 2019 12:51 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

I will paraphrase and also provide some possible interpretation of the meaning of Donne's lines in "Air and Angels." The speaker begins: Twice or thrice had I lov'd thee, Before I knew thy face...

Latest answer posted October 30, 2017 7:26 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

In the opening metaphor of this sonnet, Donne imagines life as a play; as he is now approaching his "last scene," the play—the speaker's life—must soon come to an end. This is a euphemistic way to...

Latest answer posted October 28, 2018 2:04 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

The poem centers on descriptions of the impossible and fantastic, with the speaker imploring the reader to chase after the impossible, to try and "catch a falling star" and "ride ten thousand days...

Latest answer posted July 21, 2019 4:11 pm UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

Here are some possible responses to your question: So-called “metaphysical” poetry often seems highly learned and intellectual. Donne was himself a highly learned and intellectual man. He...

Latest answer posted June 29, 2011 1:49 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

The early poetry of John Donne uses metaphysical conceits to show the physical union of the male and female, husband and wife, lover and mistress. His complex use of conceits compares to the act of...

Latest answer posted June 18, 2010 2:06 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

John Donne's "love lyrics" were not published until after his death. It is assumed that they were written before he married Anne More. These poems are sometimes what one would expect of a more wild...

Latest answer posted August 28, 2011 11:12 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

I would characterize the tone of Donne's famous sermon as expressing a special kind of universality. He makes a calm, sober attempt to unite people—surprisingly, perhaps, not so much to unite them...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2018 3:13 am UTC

3 educator answers

John Donne

The speaker of this poem starts right away with a challenge to the power that Death thinks it has. He then goes on in each of three quatrains to give a specific reason why Death should not be so...

Latest answer posted July 27, 2010 5:39 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

Here’s how I interpret it: All human beings have lustful desires that need to be quashed. All human beings are inherently sinful, and it is only through vigilance that they avoid sin. There are...

Latest answer posted September 27, 2011 3:09 am UTC

5 educator answers

John Donne

Samuel Johnson, who came up with the term "metaphysical" to describe seventeenth-century poets like Donne, stated that in their poems, The most heterogeneous ideas are yoked by violence together;...

Latest answer posted June 23, 2017 11:43 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

In John Donne's song "Go and Catch a Falling Star" the speaker demands many impossible things of the reader. The reader is told to "catch a falling star," bring the past back to the present, and...

Latest answer posted September 1, 2018 7:15 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

Metaphysical poetry came out of 17th century England. It is characterized by strange conceits (comparisons), images, or paradoxes (seemingly contradictory statements that actually have truth to...

Latest answer posted June 7, 2019 2:12 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

This poem addresses the sun in a chiding way because the speaker is lying in bed with his love, and the sun is waking them up. He calls the sun a "busy old fool" that is calling to them through the...

Latest answer posted June 16, 2010 2:19 am UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

This is just a metaphor suggesting that honesty is not the best policy for getting ahead in the world. The image is that of a sailing vessel catching a wind that will move it in the desired...

Latest answer posted June 13, 2012 7:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

John Donne

It appears that Grierson's own view is that Donne is a realist but not truly an intellectual, if I understand him correctly: A metaphysical, a philosophical poet to the degree to which even his...

Latest answer posted March 2, 2019 4:12 am UTC

2 educator answers

John Donne

Donne's "Satire 3" is a characteristically learned and witty meditation on the subject of religion. Religious matters were hugely important in Donne's day, and the question of which religion to...

Latest answer posted December 7, 2017 12:58 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Showing 1-50 of 128