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Unit 3 – The Renaissance

We need to know

Historical background of the Renaissance

The characteristics of a sonnet

The differences between types of sonnets

Biographical information on Wyatt, Sidney, Marlowe, Spenser, Raleigh, Shakespeare

The characteristics of pastoral poetry

How to identify the speaker in a poem and evaluate his purpose

How to evaluate the tone of a piece of literature

Key Terms

Renaissance Man, Petrarchan (Italian) sonnet, Shakespearean (English) sonnet, Spenserian sonnet, rhyme, meter, stanza, quatrain, octave, sestet, pastoral poetry, tone, speaker, Sir Thomas Wyatt, Sir Phillip Sidney, Christopher Marlowe, Edmund Spenser, Sir Walter Raleigh, William Shakespeare

The Literature

  • Wyatt’s "Whoso List to Hunt," Sidney’s "Sonnet 31" and "Sonnet 39," Marlowe’s "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" and excerpt from Doctor Faustus, Raleigh’s "The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd" and "To His Son," Spenser’s excerpt from The Faerie Queen, "Sonnet 75," and "Sonnet 26," and Shakespeare’s "Sonnet 29," "Sonnet 73," "Sonnet 116," and "Sonnet 130."
  • Journal Questions

      1. Define each key term.
      2. Describe the historical context of the Renaissance.
      3. Describe the lives of
      4. a) Wyatt, b) Sidney, c) Marlowe, d) Spenser, e) Raleigh, and f) Shakespeare and explain the contributions of each to the time period.
      5. Identify and explain the literal and figurative meaning of "Whoso List to Hunt."
      6. Compare …Doctor Faustus and Everyman.
      7. Prepare a persuasive essay on "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" and "The Nymph’s Reply," proving that both poems are or are not pastoral in nature.
      8. Create a comparison/contrast chart for Spenser’s "Sonnet 26" and "Sonnet 75." See page 247 Thinking and Writing.
      9. Pick any sonnet within this unit and create a "sonnet map." Make a legend of sonnet terms (each term should be represented by a different color) and label your chosen sonnet by coloring each characteristic of the sonnet. After looking at your "map," you should be able to determine what type of sonnet it is. (A model will be presented in class.)

    Unit Projects

    1. Sonnet assignment – Compose a Shakespearean sonnet – see handout (see an my example) - 100 points
    2. Persuasive essay – Revise and edit journal question #5 to prepare a final polished draft of your essay that is 1-2 pages typed in length (double-spaced) and uses direct support from the poems. 50 points
    3. Vocabulary Quiz
    4. Unit test 100 points