Sir Thomas Wyatt

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What is the main context of "The Long Love that in my Thought doth Harbour"?

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Hillard Thiel eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The response below suggests that Wyatt is writing a parody of Petrarch's Sonnet 140. This may not be the correct term, since parody involves a critical distancing from, or even mockery of, the original. That does not seem to characterize Wyatt's use of the Italian sonnet tradition. Wyatt is more invested in using his native English as a fitting vehicle for the fashionable work occurring on the continent. Just as we point to Chaucer as an early poet in the vernacular, we can point to Wyatt as one who translated the Renaissance ideals to England.

Wyatt, like Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, was a notable humanist gentleman in the English court. Traveling to Italy, men such as Wyatt would have seen signs of a new humanist aesthetic, which they brought back with them to the English court.

From early...

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