The flea john donne literary devices

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the flea john donne literary devices

John Donnes THE FLEA uses what literary device? (1739 people answered this)

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Published 17.09.2019

Donne: The Canonization

The poem touches on religion, love, and sex in a non-romanticized way, contrasting the normal glamorized stance seen in most of poetry. Metaphysical poetry is concerned with the whole experience of man.

“The Flea”: A John Donne Poetry Analysis

O stay, three lives in one flea spare, Where we almost, yea, more than married are. This flea is you and I, and this Our marriage bed, and marriage temple is. Though use make you apt to kill me, Let not to that self-murder added be, And sacrilege, three sins in killing three. Cruel and sudden, hast thou since Purpled thy nail in blood of innocence? The Flea by John Donne is a metaphysical love poem which takes the form of an erotic humorous narrative. The predominant theme in this poem is seduction which is illustrated using a persuasive conceit of a humble flea.

We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. The situation, in which we find the poem, is that of a man Mr. Donne , addressing a woman believed to be his lover. His purpose: trying to persuade her to come to bed with him. European poets, such as Lopez de Vega, used this in some of his poems. This idea stemmed from an event that happened in a literary salon. The tripartite argument progresses throughout the three stanzas, with each stanza introducing a somewhat new element to the argument.

John Donne and A Summary of The Flea

The speaker used a flea to try to trick the woman into sleeping with him. The woman tries to kill the flea throughout the poem, also killing their bond, but the speaker gives reasons through literary devices why she should not. These devices convey the reasons why the flea is pleased and how it becomes a part of both the woman and the speaker.

Andrew has a keen interest in all aspects of poetry and writes extensively on the subject. His poems are published online and in print. The Flea is one of John Donne's most popular erotic poems. It focuses on an insect that was a common nuisance in the Elizabethan period - the flea - and turns it into a sexual metaphor. That such an irritating creature could be used to such good effect is a poetic triumph but it's still not certain that, for all of Donne's wit and 'ribald humour', the speaker succeeded in his sexual conquest. In Elizabethan England it was very much the thing for poets to use a conceit, an argument, an extended metaphor which would allow a comparison to be made between diverse and often strange things.

Rating: Strong Essays. Open Document. Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper. Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly. In "The Flea," he showed the passion to his mistress via persuasive attitude.


  1. Gary M. says:

    Poem analysis of John Donne's The Flea through the review of literary techniques, poem structure, themes, and the proper usage of quotes.

  2. Gabriel V. says:

    Having sex is no different, the speaker argues, and no more dishonorable.

  3. Dalvilampsa says:

    Only John Donne could turn a flea bite into a love poem. Read this analysis of " The Flea" for a better understanding of the poem.

  4. Antje Z. says:

    John Donne's "The Flea" is an erotic metaphysical poem employing a conceit, or extended argument. The male speaker wants to make love to.

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