What literary devices are used in "Whoso List to Hunt" by Sir Thomas Wyatt?

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Thomas Wyatt's "Whoso List to Hunt" is a Petrarchan sonnet; it has fourteen lines, and a rhyme scheme of ABBA-ABBA-CDDC-EE. Compare to Shakespeare's later sonnets, and you will note that the rhyme scheme differs. Wyatt's sonnet is an early example of the genre in English; he is writing some fifty years before Shakespeare.

Wyatt uses various literary devices in this sonnet. He uses aureate diction, or the introduction of phrases from a "higher" language, to elevate the poem: "hélas," "noli me tangere." In the second instance, the use of this Latin phrase also supports the extended metaphor of the sonnet as a whole. Sonnets were typically love poems, and in this poem, the deer is used as a metaphorical representation of a woman who has escaped the speaker's grasp and his affections. When the speaker finds his deer, around "her fair neck" is written, "noli me tangere, for Caesar's I am." This is an allusion to Solinus' remarks that Caesar would have his white stags engraved with the command, "Do...

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