Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Roy, Emil||Garab, Arra M.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of English


Carew; Thomas; 1595?-1639?


This paper is a re-examination of Thomas Carew through his treatment of the important themes of love and death. It places him in the context of his time in his use of traditional images and forms, and then attempts to show the subtle ironies and social commentary which form an integral part of his poetry. The examination of his love poems reveals a poet who can successfully use the traditional Petrarchan and courtly love conventions, but it also shows his ability to see through these conventions as unrealistic and futile. Several of the poems are explicated, demonstrating his facility at logic as well as his frank and honest views on sex, love, and marriage. Thomas Carew is seen as a poet who loves life more than the social conventions which try to control the way men live. Paradoxically, the analysis of his poems on death supports our view of his emphasis on the things of life, especially the sensual pleasures. He accepts death, but does not, like Donne, come to look forward to it. Even his epitaphs rejoice more in mortality than in immortality. In summary, Carew is shown to be much more than the creator of beautiful lyrics. He lived within the accepted social system, yet he exposed the shallowness of its mores and saw through the illusion of its conventions.


Includes bibliographical references.


36 pages




Northern Illinois University

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