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Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice:
Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judgment:
Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
But not express’d in fancy; rich, not gaudy; 15
For the apparel oft proclaims the man.
Neither a borrower, nor a lender be;
For loan oft loses both itself and friend ; ;
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
This above all ;—to thine own self be true; 20
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Farewell ; my blessing season this in thee !
0! How much more doth Beauty beauteous seem,
By that sweet ornament which Truth doth give! The Rose looks fair, but fairer we it deem
For that sweet odour which doth in it live, The canker-blooms have full as deep a dye 5
As the perfumed tincture of the roses ; Hang on such thorns, and play as wantonly,
When summer's breath their masked buds discloses. But, (for their virtue only is their show)
They live unwoo'd, and unrespected fade; 10
Die to themselves. Sweet roses do not so;
Of their sweet deaths are sweetest odours made:
And so of you, beauteous and lovely youth,
When that shall fade, my verse distils your truth.
THE NYMPH'S REPLY TO THE PASSIONATE
IF all the world and love were young,
And truth in every shepherd's tongue, :
These pretty pleasures might me move,
To live with thee, and be thy love.
But Time drives flocks from field to fold, 5
When rivers rage, and rocks grow cold,
And Philomel becometh dumb;
And age complains of cares to come.
The flowers do fade and wanton fields
To wayward winter reckoning yields; 10
A honey tongue, a heart of gall,
Is fancy's spring, but sorrow's fall.
Thy gowns, thy shoes, thy beds of roses,
Thy cap, thy kirtle, and thy posies,
Soon break, soon wither, soon forgotten, 15
In folly ripe, in reason rotten.
Thy belt of straw and ivy buds,
Thy coral clasps and amber studs,
All these in me no means can move,
To come to thee, and be thy love.
But could youth last, and love still breed,
Had joy no date, nor age no need ;
Then these delights my mind might move,
To live with thee, and be thy love.
SWEET Day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky,
The dews shall weep thy fall to-night;
For thou must die.
Sweet Rose whose hue angry and brave 5
Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye,
Thy root is ever in its grave,
And thou must die.
Sweet Spring, full of sweet days and roses,
A box where sweets compacted lie,
10 My musick shows ye have your closes,
And all must die.
Only a sweet and virtuous soul,
Like season'd timber, never gives ;
But, though the whole world turn to coal, 15
Then chiefly lives.
KNOWELL'S REPROOF TO MASTER
EVERY MAN IN HIS HUMOUR."
What would I have you do? I'll tell you, kinsman;
Learn to be wise, and practise how to thrive;
That would I have you do: and not to spend
Your coin on every bauble that you fancy,
Or every foolish brain that humours you.
I would not have you to invade each place,
Nor thrust yourself on all societies,
Till men's affections, or your own desert,
Should worthily invite you
to your rank. He that is so respectless in his courses,
10 Oft sells his reputation at cheap market. Nor would I you
In flashing bravery, lest, while you affect
To make a blaze of gentry to the world,
A little puff of scorn extinguish it;
15 And you
be left like an unsavoury snuff,
Whose property is only to offend.
I'd have you sober, and contain yourself,
Not that your sail be bigger than your boat;
But moderate your expenses now, at first,
you may keep the same proportion still:
Nor stand so much on your gentility,
Which is an airy, and mere borrow'd thing,
From dead men's dust, and bones ;
Except you make, or hold it.
25 BEN JONSON.
I Can refell opinion, and approve
The state of poesy, such as it is,
Blessed, eternal, and most true divine :
Indeed, if you will look on poesy,
As she appears in many, poor and lame,
Patch'd up in remnants and old worn-out rags,
Half-starved for want of her peculiar food,
Sacred invention; then, I must confirm
Both your conceit and censure of her merit:
But view her in her glorious ornaments,
Attired in the majesty of art,
Set high in spirit with the precious taste
Of sweet philosophy; and, which is most,
Crown'd with the rich traditions of a soul,
That hates to have her dignity prophaned 15
With any relish of an earthly thought,
0, then how proud a presence doth she bear!
Then is she like herself, fit to be seen
Of none but grave and consecrated eyes.
Nor is it any blemish to her fame,
20 That such lean, ignorant, and blasted wits, Such brainless gulls, should utter their stolen wares With such applauses in our vulgar ears ; Or that their slubber'd lines have current pass, From the fat judgements of the multitude; 25 But that this barren and infected age Should set no difference 'twixt these empty spirits, And a true poet; than which reverend name Nothing can more adorn humanity.
QUEEN, and huntress, chaste and fair,
Now the sun is laid to sleep,
Seated in thy silver chair,
State in wonted manner keep:
Hesperus entreats thy light,
Goddess excellently bright.