Metaphysical poetry is:
poetry written in everyday speech but some of it is deeply introspective and even slightly irreverent

A metaphysical conceit is:
an extended metaphor that makes a surprising connection between two dissimilar things

A paradox is:
a statement that seems to contradict itself, but it still ends up conveying a truth

Which poems did John Donne write?
“A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning”,
“Holy Sonnet 10”, and “Meditation 17”

The extended metaphor/conceit in “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning” is:
comparing lovers to twin points of a compass

Why did Donne write “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning”
For his wife who missed him while he was gone being a religious showman in France.

What is the focus of Donne’s “Holy Sonnet 10”?
It is about spiritual matters (mostly death).

The extended metaphor/conceit in “Holy Sonnet 10” is:
Death is not proud or scary, and can be killed

Why did John Donne write “Meditation 17”?
he was inspired after hearing church bells ring to announce someone’s death

The extended metaphor/conceit in “Meditation 17” is
all our lives are tales in God’s great book

Famous songs inspired by “Meditation 17”:
“No man is an island” and “For whom the bell tolls”

An epitaph is:
an inscription placed on a tomb or monument to honor the memory of the person buried there.

Ben Jonson is largely remembered as what?
a playwright who -might- have written some of Shakespeare’s plays

What different jobs did Ben Johnson have before working in the theatre?
bricklayer and a soldier

How did Ben Jonson once escape death?
when being tried for killing another actor in a duel, he recitied a “neck verse” in Latin so he could be tried in more lenient church court

Which poems did Ben Jonson write?
“On My First Son” and “Still To Be Neat”

Why did the poet write “On My First Son”?
in response to the death of his son (age 7)

What is “Still To Be Neat” about?
the speaker’s assumptions about how women should appear

What is Jonson’s epitaph and where is he buried?
His tombstone in Westminster Abbey reads “O rare Ben Jonson.

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Why did Charles I disband Parliament in 1625?
He thought he had a “divine right” from God to rule.

Who were the Roundheads?
Those who wanted Parliament back during the English Civil War of 1642.

Who were the Cavaliers?
Supporters of the monarchy in the English Civil War of 1642.

What did Cavalier poetry focus on?
Themes of love, war, honor, and how to behave like a royal gentleman.

Who were two prominent Cavalier poets?
Herrick and Lovelace. Marvell had a similar poetic style, but did not share their politics.

What is the man tennant of the Cavalier philosophy?
“Carpe diem” which is Latin for “living in the moment.”

What is hyperbole?
figurative language that exaggerates with humor

What poem did Robert Herrick write?
“To the Virgins, To Make Much of Time”

What was Robert Herrick known as?
“the greatest songwriter ever born of English race”

What is the extended metaphor/conceit of “To the Virgins, To Make Much of Time?
it compares life to a short-living flower

What does the speaker in “To the Virgins, To Make Much of Time” as the reader/listener to to do?
“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may” .. or live for today / stop and smell the roses

Which poem did Andrew Marvell write?
“To His Coy Mistress” where the speaker is trying to woo a lover

Why is Marvell not considered a Cavalier poet?
He did not share the same politics as Herrick and Lovelace, but he did have a similar poetic style.

How was Andrew Marvell tied to John Milton?
Marvell was Milton’s assistant when Milton was Latin secretary to Parliamentary government.

Which poem did Richard Lovelace write?
“To Lucasta, Going to the Wars”

Why was Lovelace called “the perfect Cavalier?”
He was wealthy, a valiant soldier, and well educated.

What is the extended metaphor/conceit of “To Lucasta, Going to the Wars”?
It contrasts emotional love with war.

Which poem did Omar Khayyam write?
He wrote -most- of the Rubaiyat (at least 250 of the 400 poems).

Why is the Rubaiyat famous?
It’s the most important work of literature from modern-day Iran.

How many quatrains are in the Rubaiyat?
The Rubaiyat contains more than 400 quatrains each covering a single thought on a subject (love, death, time, etc.).

What does Rubaiyat mean?
Rubaiyat is the plural form of the Persian poetic form close to the English quatrain (four line poem) where the 1st, 2nd, and 4th lines rhyme.

Which poems did John Milton write?
“How Soon Hath Time”, “When I Consider How My Light Is Spent”, and “Paradise Lost”

Why did Milton pursue poetry from an early age?
He wanted to “justify the ways of God to men” and to “perhaps leave something written to aftertimes, as they should not willingly let it die.”

(explore humanity’s relationship with God)

How lengthly is “Paradise Lost”?
It spans 10 books and more than 10,000 lines of blank verse.

Why did Milton write “How Soon Hath Time”?
He wrote it on his 23rd birthday wondering about the concept of free will versus destiny.

Why did Milton write “When I Consider How My Light Is Spent”?
It is about losing his eyesight.

What is the basic source material for “Paradise Lost?”
The book of Genesis in The Bible.

How did blind Milton write “Paradise Lost”?
Milton dictated 20 or 30 lines of rhythmic blank verse at a time to his assistants, friends, relatives (his three daughters) over the course
of 7 years.

Which of our poems is widely considered the finest epic poem in the English language?
“Paradise Lost.”

What are the characteristics of an epic poem?
It opens in medias res, or the middle of the story.

The setting is vast, covering more than one nation.

It usually begins with an invocation to a Muse.

The theme is often stated at the beginning.

It features long and formal speeches.

It shows divine intervention in human affairs.

The hero embodies the values of his society.

What issues does Milton ponder in “Paradise Lost”?
Milton probes the relationships between free will and destiny, as well as freedom and responsibility.

What lines of “Paradise Lost Book 1” are the most important?
Lines 34 – 44 : Satan has warrior qualities

Lines 84 – 124: Satan speaks to Beelzebub

Lines 100-102: Satan claims many disliked God

Line 124: Satan explains the “Tyranny of Heaven”

Lines 197-200: Allusions to Greek mythology

Lines 253-255: Allusion to Hamlet

Lines 254-270: What does Satan say about the mind? What does he say about free will?

Line 263: Better to reign in Hell

What is Book 1 of “Paradise Lost” about?
Satan and the fallen angels in Hell planning to lead their rebellion for being kicked out of Heaven.

What is the epic subject of “Paradise Lost”?
The epic subject of “Paradise Lost” is the fall and redemption of man.

What is the epic question of “Paradise Lost”?
The epic question of “Paradise Lost” is what caused Adam and Eve to disobey God.

What are the differences between an epic hero and a tragic hero?
Epic Hero:
Virtuous Actions
Ideal qualities Tragic flaws
Ending has him/her overcoming adversity and bringing a blessing to his/her people

Tragic Hero:
All-too human
Destructive Actions
Tragic flaws
Ends with tragic downfall of the hero failing because of the flaws

What was the name of the sequel to “Paradise Lost” and what was it about?
“Paradise Regained” tells how God
fulfills that promise to humanity with the return of the Messiah.

What is the name of Satan’s minion in “Paradise Lost”?

What two literary allusions does Milton make in Book 1 of “Paradise Lost”?
He refers to Greek mythology and to a line from “Hamlet.”

What work did Margaret Cavendish write?
Cavendish wrote “Female Orations” which is an argumentation where 7 imaginary women express their views.

What is an argumentation?
an argumentation is writing intended to convince an audience that an idea should be either adopted or rejected.

Why did Cavendish write “Female Orations”?
She wanted to offer a rebuttal to so many men telling women how they should act and behave using the Bible as a justification.

What did most other female writers during Cavendish’s time write about?
There were few female writers during her time, and the few who were around tended to focus on topics of family, religion, romance, and how to run a household.

Why did so few female writers publish during the era of the metaphysical poets?
Because modesty was held to be a virtue by society at that time, most female writers never published.

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Metaphysical poetry review. (2018, Jan 03). Retrieved from

Metaphysical poetry review
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