Shakespeare's Sonnets Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

Shakespeare's Sonnets book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What poetic techniques are in Shakespeare's Sonnet 97?

Expert Answers info

Marietta Sadler eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2019

write1,410 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Science

In the opening line of the poem, Shakespeare uses pathetic fallacy when he compares his absence from his lover to "a winter." Pathetic fallacy is when the weather or a season reflects the mood of the character. Winter connotes decay, stillness, coldness, and death, and thus the speaker is implying that his absence from his lover was to him a kind of cold, still death. Later in the poem, Shakespeare says that "summer and his pleasures wait" upon his lover. The season of summer connotes vitality and warmth, and so the speaker is using pathetic fallacy here to suggest that his lover exudes these qualities.

Also in the poem, in lines two, three and four, Shakespeare repeatedly uses exclamatory sentences . For example, the speaker, describing his absence from his lover, exclaims, "what dark days seen!" Exclamatory sentences like this one, especially when repeated one after the other, emphasize that the speaker's tone is desperate or perhaps even incredulous. He is desperate when he reflects upon...

(The entire section contains 4 answers and 826 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Lynn Ramsson eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write787 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Wallace Field eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseTeacher (K-12)


calendarEducator since 2016

write7,223 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Arts

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Kristen Lentz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2012

write2,471 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial