Shakespeare is one of the greatest poet and playwright of the Elizabethan Period. He was born in Stratford-upon-Avon in England in 1564. He wrote 154 sonnets. The current poem “The marriage of true minds” is sonnet number one hundred and sixteen. In this poem nature of true love is defined. The first four lines expresses-
“Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
In these lines Shakespeare is talking about true love. When the lover and the beloved are true to each other there is hardly any impediments or obstacles but a love story cannot be said a true love story when the lover and the beloved are not true to each other. A true lover cannot change even if his beloved shifts her attention from him to any other man. The next four lines are as follows-
“o, no !it is an ever fixed mark
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken
This love of the lover is constant and fixed. It is not going to change even after a great disturbance. True love acts like a guiding star or the northern star which is also known as the pole star. Thus it acts like a guiding star for every boat which has lost its way. Boat can also be seen as lover that for every lover true love acts like a pole star. In the next four lines we can find that-
“Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom;-
In these lines Shakespeare has said that time cannot cheat or befool true love. With the change of time if circumstances changes then also a true lover remains constant. This love for his beloved is permanent. The beauty of rosy lips and cheeks may fade away with the passage of time but it cannot change the heart of a true lover. Bending sickle is a metaphor used for time that even in worst time true love is constant. Even the arrival of dooms day cannot shake true love because it is permanent and ever marked. True lovers may die with the passage of time but their love is immortal. The last two lines are as follows-
“If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
Shakespeare says that if whatever he has written is proved wrong then what ever he has written is false and it can be looked as he has not written a single word and there is no man on this earth who has loved truly.
Characteristics of Shakespearean sonnets
There are three main characteristics which can be mentioned as-
1. It has three quatrains and a couplet
2.It is usually written in iambic pentameter
3. The rhyme scheme is abab cdcd efef gg
Those people who love to quote or read Shakespeare are known as Bardlotaire. G.B.Shaw was the man who actually coined this term.
Thomas Bowdler has censored the drama of Shakespeare by removing obscene language from almost all of his plays.