A conceit used by Petrarch and highly imitated by English soneteers. The conceit rests upon elaborate and exaggerated comparisons expressing in extravagent terms the beauty, cruelty and charm of the beloved and the suffering and despair of the forlorn lover. Hyperbolic analogies to ships at sea etc...are used as is the OXYMORON. Shakespeare in "Sonnet 130 - My Mistress's Eyes..." satirizes the Petrarchan conventions while giving a reasonably accurate catalogue of them.
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