Historical Context in Sonnet 55
Historical Context Examples in Sonnet 55:
"dwell in lovers’ eyes..." See in text (Sonnet 55)
According to critic Stephen Booth, lovers’ eyes could refer to the popular Renaissance conceit of “looking babies,” in which lovers would see their own reflection in each other’s eyes and think of their progeny—miniaturized versions of themselves reflected in the eyes of their beloved. This imagery returns to the procreation sonnets that start this sequence. Here, however, the speaker displaces actual progeny with his poem: because of his poem, the youth’s image is the progeny that is reproduced within the reflection between lovers’ eyes.
"the judgment..." See in text (Sonnet 55)
In the Christian tradition, Judgment Day begins with the Resurrection of the Dead. In this event, all of the dead who have ever lived rise from the grave to meet their last judgment before God. This judgment will determine whether or not they go to heaven.