Marvell back dating
In his poem, Marvell makes allusions to Judaism and Christianity that could slip past modern readers and that weaken the speaker’s argument.
An exploration of English views of Jews at the time the poem was written leads to a further understanding and multiple interpretations of the poem.
Wilensky adds that the Jews remaining in England were mostly Marrano Jews from Portugal (398).
In order to understand the carpe diem argument and counter-argument in Andrew Marvell’s poem “To His Coy Mistress,” the reader must understand Christian relations with the Jews in seventeenth century England.
The third stanza has an added sense of urgency and the speaker argues that the way to spite the limits of time is to seek pleasure while they can.
In line 8, the speaker says he would begin loving the woman “ten years before the Flood.” The woman could play coy until “the conversion of the Jews” (Marvell 9).
First, a large division between the Catholic church and the Protestant church dominated the religious scene in England.
Shapiro points out that from the time Edward VI too the throne in 1547 to the time Elizabeth took the throne in 1558, the state religion of England had changed three times (135).According to Danson, the primary occupation of Jews was still money lending (147).