17th Century Poetry

4 characteristics of metaphysical poetry
colloquial, erudition, paradox, and metaphysical conceit

“turbulent years”

everyday “common” language

requires great intellectual effort to understand

apparent self-contradiction that reveals a kind of truth

Metaphysical conceit
an extended metaphor that makes a surprising or unexpected comparison

John Donne
The leading writer of the metaphysical poetry movement

Characteristic of John Donne’s poetry

self-contradictory phrase, an abbreviated paradox

George Herbert
“School of Donne” poet; devoted himself to his church; served the poor

George Herbert
Close family friend of John Donne’s

George Herbert
Favorite of King James I (Metaphysical poetry)

characteristic of George Herbert’s poetry
experience of attending church; very religious

Concrete poem
a poem that takes the shape of the subject/theme discussed; the physical shape reflects its content; in this case, the poem looks like wings

Andrew Marvell
“School of Donne” poet; Son of a Puritan minister; Tutor of Oliver Cromwell

John Milton
Andrew Marvell saved his life

shy or modest in a playful or provocative way; unwilling to make a commitment

Andrew Marvell
Wrote “to his coy mistress”

Cavalier Poetry
“courtly lyrics”

Cavalier Poetry
about love and personal loyalty (country)

a person who supports the king; identifies with the King’s cause (usually courtiers)

King Charles 1
cavalier poets supported him

Cavalier Poetry
Light, elegant and easy verse

carpe diem
seduction poems

Ben Jonson
Best known poet of the 1620s

Ben Jonson

Ben Jonson
Poet Laureate of England

Ben Jonson
used apostrophes often

“Sons of Ben” member and cavalier poet”Sons of Ben” member and cavalier poet”Sons of Ben” member and cavalier poet”Sons of Ben” member
Sir John Suckling

Sir John Suckling
Wasted his wealth on gambling