Oppositions

  • Urbanity – Rurality: hectic and superficial life in the city is contrasted with the serenity and cheerfulness of the rural setting
  • Pleasure – Constraint: death, war, and grief are always present in Arcadia; one cannot always fiddle with the cricket but toil also with the ant (Esop)
  • Community of equals – individualism and struggle for preferment at court
  • Court – Country. Court: fear and craft, falsehood and treason, disguise and mask, lack of joy, "Sweet words were cheapely bought and sold, / but none that stood in sted" (Shepherd Tonie), "seasoned words" (Thomas Lodge); "Wit was imployed for each mans owne, / plaine meaning came too short:" (Shepherd Tonie), "Golden cups doo harbour poison" (Thomas Lodge) – City: "pride and pompe" (Thomas Lodge); "Friends "¦ as quickly lost as wone." (Shepherd Tonie); The formost man came last behinde" (Shepherd Tonie), no remorse or pity – Country: to live in quiet state, "yea and nay went smoothly" (Shepherd Tonie); "true peace" (Thomas Lodge), "quiet Peace" (Richard Barnfield); "humble minds" (Thomas Lodge), shepherd`s minds are "pure from all impure intent ["¦] He beares no malice in his harmless hart", is not inclined to jealousy (Richard Barnfield); "perfect peace" (Thomas Lodge)

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