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Word Count: 1,434
In John Wilmots A Satyr on Charles II there is an obvious theme of sexuality The poem references his high Desires 9 the way he rolls about from Whore to Whore 13 and that his Prick is of Length 10 While this poem is seemingly about King Charles IIs sexual exploits mentions of the crown and the court interrupt the sexual theme with a second theme of kingship it is said that he is The easiest King and the best bred man alive 4 and A merry Monarch scandalous and poor 14 The apparent dichotomy between the two themes present in this poem can be resolved by comparing the mentions of the kings sexual relations and the contrasting language used to state his actions as a leader Although this poem seems to mock King Charles IIs affinity for intercourse the theme of sexuality is used as an extended metaphor to relate inadequacy as a leader as opposed to in the bedroom This poem has a double meaning that uses the extended metaphor of sexuality to provide the reader insight on the kings struggle between the passion for his country and his inability to rule Therefore the label of satyr is meant to be applied to the kings inadequacy as a leader rather than his scandalous sexual lifeThe comparison between the kings ability as a lover and as a monarch is most obvious in the lines that state Nor are his high Desires above his Strength His Sceptre and his Prick are of a Length lines 9-10 The first phrase of this excerpt confirms that the kings failings are due to his inadequacy instead of his inability to affect change In whichever area the king has high Desires whether it be sexual or political his ability to adjust the situation is not above his Strength or his power With that being said one must then assume that the kings failings are a result of his incompetence
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