Libertines Real and Fictional in Rochester, Shadwell, Wycherley, and Boswell Page: 49
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But carve thereon a spreading Vine,
Then add Two lovely Boys;
Their Limbs in Amorous folds intwine,
The Type of future joys. ("Drinking" 1. 17-20, my emphasis)
The narrator wants to see two men in a loving embrace (what Patterson calls the physical
component of homosexuality) but he does not stop there. He ends the stanza with the line "the
type of future joys" ("Drinking" 1. 20, my emphasis). Blair makes an argument similar to
Patterson and asserts that the final line of this stanza differs from the rest of the stanza because it
demonstrates that the narrator is "motivated by unadorned animal drives" (Blair 128). However,
the word "future" implies a more permanent relationship that includes a physical one ("animal
drives"), but simultaneously includes an emotional relationship (128). When coupled with the
idyllic, romantic setting the narrator insists that the design portray, the image of two men "their
limbs in amorous fold intwine" resonates as more than just an instinctual, physical-and
arguably libertine-drive for sexual intercourse ("Drinking" 1. 23). Though Patterson is right in
his contention that the descriptions on the cup are "unashamedly sensual" and cites examples
such as the following: "the boys are seductively 'lovely'; 'limbs' implies the activity of all
members of the body; 'amorous folds' has sexual connotations; 'entwine' is more sensual than
say, 'embrace.'...this is the example of 'future joys,'" the phrase "future joys" resonates as more
than mere sensual descriptions of the men depicted in the stanza (Patterson 11, "Drinking" 1. 24).
In other words, the romantic settings displayed on this cup that include men embracing one
another as lovers reflects both a more permanent physical and emotional relationship than the
one libertines typically prefer. This seemingly aberrant type of relationship that contains both a
sexual and emotional component demonstrates the instability of libertinism as a concept and the
frequent need to change the definition so that it suits the agendas of respective libertines.
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Smith, Victoria. Libertines Real and Fictional in Rochester, Shadwell, Wycherley, and Boswell, dissertation, May 2008; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6051/m1/55/?q=rochester: accessed February 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .