We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

The Flea by John Donne, To His Coy Mistress by Andrew Marvell and How Do I Love Thee by Elizabeth Barrett Browning Essay Sample

The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC

Get Full Essay

Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues.

Get Access

The Flea by John Donne, To His Coy Mistress by Andrew Marvell and How Do I Love Thee by Elizabeth Barrett Browning Essay Sample

This essay will compare the poems The Flea, To His Coy Mistress, and How Do I Love Thee all of which are love and seductive poems. Metaphysical poetry is often used to compare one thing to another that appears to have nothing in common and combines feeling with thought, and this method is visible in Donne’s The Flea where Donne compares his love of his wife and his cravings for sex to a flea. There are many similarities and differences between the three poems. Both The Flea and To His Coy Mistress have a sense of urgency present within them with Donne urging his wife to have sex with him and Marvell trying to explain to his love to hurry up and let him love her.

The biggest difference however, between the three is that How Do I Love Thee by Elizabeth Barrett Browning is written from the women’s perspective whereas the other two are written from the mans perspective and we do not hear the women’s point of view. Both The Flea and To His Coy Mistress are sycophantic. Although How Do I Love Thee is purely a romantic seductive poem from Elizabeth Barrett Browning to her love, Donnes The Flea is merely an attempt for Donne to get his wife to have sex with him.

Within these three poems there are many examples of where natural imagery has been used. In most cases to represent the love the poet has for his or her partner. It is said that Andrew Marvell travelled a lot and was very impressed with the works of John Donne; this would be a good explanation for some of his more vivid metaphysical poetry and natural imagery. Elizabeth Barrett Browning suffered from a lung disease and had to take specific medication until the day of her death, this could also have had an effect on her poetry. In Marvell’s To His Coy Mistress, which is more subtle than Donnes The Flea, Marvell is explaining to his love that she deserves to be loved forever but they do not have this time to love each other so they must make hast.

” Had we but world enough, and time,

This coyness, lady, were no crime.”

Marvell uses natural imagery and compares his love to “vegetable love”, and explains that there love would be bigger than an empire.

“My vegetable love should grow

Vaster than empires, and more slow”

The way that Donne uses natural imagery to compare his love for his wife to that of a flea and the way that it is written in the first person gives us a sense of urgency from Donne.

There are many examples of where religious imagery is used within the three poems. Most appear in Marvell’s To His Coy Mistress. An example of this would be at the end of the third stanza.

” Through the iron gates of life

Thus, though we cannot make our sun

Stand still, yet we will make him run.”

Here Marvell uses this religious imagery to explain to his love that together they cannot play God but they can take advantage of the time that they will have together. Elizabeth Barrett Browning spent most of her time writing love poems to her love Robert Browning, and How Do I Love Thee is one of her more romantic pieces. Browning uses religious imagery to show how true her love is to her partner.

“I love thee to the depth and breadth and height

My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight.”

This essay has compared the three poems The Flea, To His Coy Mistress, and How Do I Love Thee witch are all linked by different methods of metaphysical poetry and love and seduction. In each case the poet is expressing a feeling or an urge for his or her partner as in Donne’s The Flea where Donne compares his love for his partner and his cravings to have sex by using natural imagery to a flea. The Flea however is in contrast to Browning’s How Do I Love Thee where there is no persuasion for sex and it is just a purely romantic poem.

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

Peculiarities of various assignment types

The educational process is diverse and full of interesting writing tasks which help students develop their academic abilities. Different assignments types are created by professionals in order to enhance students’ level of analytical, critical and writing skills and to vary the learning process. As a student, you will encounter numerous tasks of diverse complexities throughout your student life. Sometimes, maybe, too complicated! They have different peculiarities, structural...

Making decisions in health and social care

Critically analyses the concepts, features, and importance of costs and accounting in making decisions in health and social care Cost accounting is a method used in accounting to capture a company’s or organisation’s production costs. It assesses the input costs of every step in production, fixed costs like depreciation of capital equipment. Cost accounting measures and records costs individually then compare the input results via...

Сhildren development

Physical development 7-12 years By the age of 7 a child enjoys things such as bike riding and rollerblading they are now able to tie and untie shoelaces without adult help, they are now starting to understand what rules are and are able to follow simple rules. At 8-12 years a child improves the physical skills that they have already developed and start to see...

Forex international trading market

Introduction Forex exchange is on the rise in Namibia; resulting in more people wanting to learn how to trade to try to increase their income so that they can enhance their standard of living. Forex Foreign exchange identifies the process of converting domestic currency into international banknotes at particular exchange rates (Bofah, 2017, para.1). As the number of foreigners in Namibia is increasing, more Namibians...

Aristotelian idea of God

This image produced in 1544 shows emerging's of the Judeo-Christians and Aristotelian's traditions. Aristotle was very interested in the idea of motion and said “The world is in a constant state of motion and change”. An example of how the world is changing is the growth of trees and plants. Aristotle believed in a prime mover, which is the being which creates change in the...

Get Access To The Full Essay
Materials Daily
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
Free Plagiarism
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access

Become a member

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!


Emma Taylor


Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Couldn't Find What You Looking For?

Get access to our huge knowledge base which is continuously updated

Next Update Will Be About:
14 : 59 : 59
Become a Member