Shakespeare Sonnet 117 Analysis: Accuse me thus: that I have scanted all

Shakespeare sonnet 117Analysis, Summary, Theme and modern English Translation

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This is a short summary of Shakespeare sonnet 117. 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 117 (Original Text)

Accuse me thus: that I have scanted all
Wherein I should your great deserts repay,
Forgot upon your dearest love to call,
Whereto all bonds do tie me day by day;
That I have frequent been with unknown minds,
And giv’n to time your own dear purchased right;
That I have hoisted sail to all the winds
Which should transport me farthest from your sight.
Book both my willfulness and errors down,
And on just proof surmise accumulate.
Bring me within the level of your frown,
But shoot not at me in your wakened hate,
Since my appeal says I did strive to prove
The constancy and virtue of your love.

Shakespeare Sonnet 117 Modern Text (Translation)

Shakespeare sonnet 117 Modern English Translation

-via SparkNotes

Shakespeare Sonnet 117 Analysis

The poet tells the fair lord that he can accuse him of wasting opportunities “Accuse me thus: that I have scanted all” to repay him what he owes the youth “Wherein I should your great deserts repay”. He says he has forgotten call upon the youths love “Forgot upon your dearest love to call,” that binds him every passing day “Whereto all bonds do tie me day by day;”

The poet says he has been spending time with strangers “That I have frequent been with unknown minds,” and not given time to the fair lord who has the right over him “And giv’n to time your own dear purchased right;” now the fair youth can claim that the poet has allowed himself to be influenced by others (comparing the influences to winds) “That I have hoisted sail to all the winds” that have driven him farther from the sight of the youth “Which should transport me farthest from your sight?”

He tells the lord to write down all the stubborn things he has done “Book both my willfulness and errors down,” and add to them whatever else he knows based on assumptions “And on just proof surmise accumulate.” He tells the fair lord he can frown at him “Bring me within the level of your frown,” but not to do it because of new hatred for the poet “But shoot not at me in your wakened hate,”

Because the poet says he has done all this to prove “Since my appeal says I did strive to prove” how consistent and strong is the youth’s love for him. “The constancy and virtue of your love”

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