Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Hardy M. Cook
Not Peer Reviewed

Lucrece (Quarto, 1594)


THE RAPE OF LVCRECE.

1275But tell me girle, when went (and there shee staide,
Till after a deepe grone) TARQVIN from hence,
Madame ere I was vp (repli'd the maide,)
The more to blame my sluggard negligence.
Yet with the fault I thus farre can dispence:
1280My selfe was stirring ere the breake of day,
And ere I rose was TARQVIN gone away.

But Lady, if your maide may be so bold,
Shee would request to know your heauinesse:
(O peace quoth LVCRECE) if it should be told,
1285The repetition cannot make it lesse:
For more it is, then I can well expresse,
And that deepe torture may be cal'd a Hell,
VVhen more is felt then one hath power to tell.

Go get mee hither paper, inke, and pen,
1290Yet saue that labour, for I haue them heare,
(VVhat should I say) one of my husbands men
Bid thou be readie, by and by, to beare
A letter to my Lord, my Loue, my Deare,
Bid him with speede prepare to carrie it,
1295The cause craues hast, and it will soone be writ.
Her