Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Shake-speares Sonnets (Quarto 1, 1609)
  • Editors: Hardy M. Cook, Ian Lancashire

  • Copyright Hardy M. Cook and Ian Lancashire. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editors: Hardy M. Cook, Ian Lancashire
    Peer Reviewed

    Shake-speares Sonnets (Quarto 1, 1609)


    Or layd great bases for eternity,
    1865Which proues more short then wast or ruining?
    Haue I not seene dwellers on forme and fauor
    Lose all, and more by paying too much rent
    For compound sweet;Forgoing simple sauor,
    Pittifull thriuors in their gazing spent.
    1870Noe, let me be obsequious in thy heart,
    And take thou my oblacion, poore but free,
    Which is not mixt with seconds, knows no art,
    But mutuall render onely me for thee.
    Hence, thou subborndInformer, a trew soule
    1875When most impeacht, stands least in thy controule.


    O Thou my louely Boy who in thy power,
    Doest hould times fickle glasse, his fickle, hower:
    Who hast by wayning growne, and therein shou'st,
    1880Thy louers withering, as thy sweet selfe grow'st.
    If Nature(soueraine misteres ouer wrack)
    As thou goest onwards still will plucke thee backe,
    She keepes thee to this purpose, that her skill.
    May time disgrace, and wretched mynuit kill.
    1885Yet feare her O thou minnion of her pleasure,
    She may detaine, but not still keepe her tresure!
    Her Audite(though delayd)answer'd must be,
    And her Quietus is to render thee.


    IN the ould age blacke was not counted faire,
    Or if it weare it bore not beauties name:
    But now is blacke beauties successiue heire,
    1895And Beautie slanderd with a bastard shame,
    For since each hand hath put on Natures power,
    Fairing the foule with Arts faulse borrow'd face,
    Sweet beauty hath no name no holy boure,
    But is prophan'd, if not liues in disgrace.
    H 3