Historical Context in To His Coy Mistress
Political Context: Marvell lived through a turbulent political period in England during which the monarchy was briefly overthrown after a series of bloody civil wars between 1642 and 1651. He was a proponent of the short-lived Commonwealth of England, which was established by the victorious Parliamentarians after the wars, and became increasingly bitter after the monarchy was reinstated in 1660. Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress” was published posthumously but it is speculated that it was written sometime near the end of the civil wars or during the early days of the Commonwealth. The carpe-diem theme present in “To His Coy Mistress” may have been influenced by the unstable political climate of Marvell’s adult years.