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  • 10 months ago
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Find out the metaphysical traits in the poems of Andrew Marvell


Find out the metaphysical traits in the poems of Andrew Marvell. [NU-‘13,‘15,‘16]

Ans. Metaphysical poetry is about the intellect indulging in far-fetched expressions and conceited thoughts. The most distinctive feature of the metaphysical poetry is the use of imagery which is invariable unusual, striking often breath-taking but sometimes far-fetched and fantastic.

Andrew Marvell shows many qualities associated with the metaphysical poetry. He demonstrates many metaphysical conceits in his poems. He deals with the relation between the soul and the body. His ‘To His Coy Mistress’ and ‘The Definition of Love’ are among the great metaphysical poems of love. 

In ‘To His Coy Mistress’, Marvell uses ‘Carpe-Diem’ theme. He displays a series of witty hyperbolic fancies about unlimited time. The use of all things are called metaphysical conceits. He also uses stretched metaphors. For example, in part one of his syllogism or logical argument designed to convince his targeted woman to sleep with him. He refers to their love as ‘Vegetable Love’. He expresses:

“My vegetable love should grow

Vaster than empires and more slow;”

However, the idea is that if they were immortal and could spend centuries in the wooing stage of love-making, their love could grow as slowly as a vegetable. The poem also makes syllogism in which he centres on the mortality of humans. The following lines are abounded with the metaphysical conceits:

“The grave’s a fine and private place, But none, I think, do here embrace.”

Marvell’s ‘The Definition of Love’ also bears many metaphysical conceits. The poem describes the nature of the love which exists between the poet and his beloved. It is unattainable. He says:

“My love is of a birth as rare

As ‘tis for object strange and high;

It was begotten by Despair

Upon Impossibility.”

We can conclude by stating that the use of wit and conceit, additionally the intellectual and the ‘Carpe-Diem’ theme mark Andrew Marvell as a metaphysical poet.

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