Shakespeare Sonnet 116 Analysis: Let me not to the marriage of true minds 

Shakespeare sonnet 116 Analysis, Summary, Theme and modern English Translation

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This is a short summary of Shakespeare sonnet 116. Continue reading for complete analysis and meaning in the modern text. For the complete list of 154 sonnets, check the collection of Shakespeare Sonnets with analysis. It is highly recommended to buy “The Monument” by Hank Whittemore, which is the best book on Shakespeare Sonnets.

Shakespeare Sonnet 116 (Original Text)

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: 
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark 
That looks on tempests and is never shaken; 
It is the star to every wandering bark, 
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken 
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. 
 If this be error and upon me proved, 
 I never writ, nor no man ever loved. 

-WIKI

Shakespeare Sonnet 116 Modern Text (Translation)

Shakespeare sonnet 116 modern English Translation

-via SparkNotes

Shakespeare Sonnet 116 Analysis

The poet says that concerning the marriage of people; “Let me not to the marriage of true minds “he hopes he will never be the one to say that true love shouldn’t be joined together “Admit impediments.” Because love isn’t love “Love is not love” if it suddenly changes in nature after a beloved changes “Which alters when it alteration finds,” or goes away when a beloved leaves “Or bends with the remover to remove.”

He says love is a permanent mark “O no, it is an ever-fixèd mark” that can never be shaken in spite of the fiercest storm “That looks on tempests and is never shaken;” and love is like a wandering star that guides boats at sea “It is the star to every wand’ring bark,” whose value though not known is more than valuable “Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.”

Love isn’t restricted by time although physical features like rosy lips and cheeks “Love’s not time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks” can be destroyed by time “Within his bending sickle’s compass come:” but love doesn’t change with times passing days and weeks “Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,” and can last forever until doomsday “But bears it out even to the edge of doom.”

He says if he is proved wrong about these statements, “If this be error and upon me proved,”, then it means he never was a poet, nor did he ever love anyone “I never writ, nor no man ever loved.”

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