How Does The Represent Of Aging In Shakespeare's Sonnet 73

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Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 73” uses many images and metaphors to represent the mental and physical stresses of aging by comparing it to the changes that happen in nature. Each of the three quatrains are composed of different events that happen in nature, but are all emphasizing the natural effect of time on a person’s age, just like the changing of the season, the rise and fall of the sun, and the flame eventually burning out in a fire. In the first quatrain, Shakespeare uses the transition of autumn to winter to represent the speaker’s aging. “That time of year thou mayst in me behold” (1) is a statement that shows the speaker comparing himself to the season. “When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang; (2) upon those boughs which shake against the cold (3)” gives a clear image of leaves that are dying or decaying, much like the speaker. “The sense of imminent death is conveyed by the dying leaves which ‘hang’ limply on branches that, like the speaker’s limbs, shake with infirmity” (Andrews). By describing the changes of the trees and the approach of winter, the audience is given some insight to the frail condition of the speaker and the point of view about aging.…show more content…
“Life is gradually draining out of him like the color out of a sunset” (Andrews). The imagery of the sun setting paints a picture of how waiting for death as we age could be compared to waiting for the sun to set and turn into darkness. Shakespeare writes, “As after the sunset fadeth in the west (6); which by and by black night doth take away” (7), to compare the fading of the sun to the fading youth of the

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