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Puritans and Literary Devices

Puritan Plain Style
short words, direct statements, and references to ordinary, everyday objects; clearly expressed only useful or religious ideas; used by Anne Bradstreet and Benjamin Franklin

Make me, O Lord, Thy spinning wheel complete.- Huswifery

slant rhyme
Then dye the same in heavenly colors choice.
All pinked with varnished flowers of paradise. – Huswifery

Then clothe therewith mine understanding, will
Affections, judgment, conscience, memory
– Huswifery

John Smith
first man to promote permanent settlement of America; English soldier; 27 yrs. old; interested in mapping the new world; scouted U.S. territory; gave New England its name; greatly used PROPAGANDA and FALSE STATEMENTS; only wrote EXPLORATION ACCOUNTS; wrote the New Land; arrived in Jamestown in 1607

false advertisement to promote something

5 doctrines of Calvinism
1. Total depravity
2. Unconditioned Election
3. Limited Atonement
4. Irresistible Grace
5. Perseverance of the Saints

Total Depravity
all humans have a genetic predisposition to sin because Adam disobeyed god and passed on this trait

Unconditioned Election
election is predestined; one cannot do anything to change god’s decision; some get salvation and others don’t

Limited Atonement
god died for those to be saved; his death is thought to be for humanity

Irresistible Grace
God gives divine grace freely; neither earned nor refused

Perseverance of the Saints
one does not know whether he is truly among the chosen, so he must behave as if he is chosen and live uprightly; being elected = assurance of eternal salvation

Three Major Beliefs of Puritans
1. god’s grace
2. divine mission
3. plainness

why settlers came to america
1. religion
2. gold
3. power

Anne Bradstreet
wrote first volume of poems published in America; part of Massachusetts Bay Colony; enjoyed writing poems- wrote the first colonial collection of poetry The Tenth Muse (classical allusion); wrote PERSONAL POEMS; expressed difficult Puritan life; showed links between earthly and heavenly life; PLAIN STYLE, ANASTROPHE, BIBLICAL ALLUSIONS, PARADOX, PARALLEL STRUCTUE, and RHYMING COUPLETS; wrote “Verses upon the Burning of our House” and “To My Dear and Loving Husband”

In silent night when rest I took;

a sentence’s usual word order is inverted; inverting the subject and the verb or noun and adjective

unaccented syllable followed by accented syllable; u/

rhyming couplets
rhyming pairs of lines; ABAB

Biblical, Classical, or Historical

iambic tetrameter
lines of the poem have 4 accented syllables and 4 unaccented syllables; sounds like a song when read; contains 4 feet

Biblical Allusion
In silence ever shalt thou lie.
Adieu, Adieu, All’s Vanity.

“to God”

All’s Vanity
“everything comes from God”

Biblical Allusion
A price so vast as is unknown,
Yet by his gift is made thine own.

classical allusion
10th muse

iambic pentameter
5 feet per line; 5 unaccented syllables and 5 accented syllables

parallel structure (repetition)
If ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever……………………………
If ever……………………………

My love is such that rivers cannot quench,

Biblical allusion
“If ever two were one” (alludes to Adam and Eve and Matthew in New Testament

That when we live no more, we may live forever

self-contradictory statement

extreme exaggeration

metaphysical poetry
poetry with extravagant comparisons, intellectual wit, and subtle argument to explore religious faith and affection

Edward Taylor

two lines sound like full sentence


talking to an inanimate object

stop in the middle of a line, done with either a period or semicolon

Then weave the web Thyself. The yarn is fine.

Make me, O Lord, Thy spinning wheel complete

extended metaphor that is unexpected and hard to understand ex. Huswifery

extended metaphor
metaphor that goes on for a very long paragraph, expected

list of things


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