What Is a Blazon in Poetry?

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A blazon (also referred to as a blason) is a poem in which the speaker describes his lover’s body. It focuses on various parts of a woman’s body, emphasizing her physical beauty.

Blazon poetry commonly makes use of both simile and metaphor to draw comparisons between body parts and beautiful objects. Because the point of a blazon is to describe a woman’s beauty, hyperbole is also used as the poet describes impossible levels of physical attractiveness. William Shakespeare parodies the blazon form in Sonnet 130, in which he compares his lover to unattractive objects and contrasts her against common blazon metaphors.