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About this text

  • Title: Venus and Adonis (Quarto 1, 1593)
  • Editor: Hardy M. Cook
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-411-0

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Hardy M. Cook
    Peer Reviewed

    Venus and Adonis (Quarto 1, 1593)


    VVhat haue you vrg'd, that I can not reproue?
    The path is smooth that leadeth on to danger,
    I hate not loue, but your deuise in loue,
    790That lends imbracements vnto euery stranger,
    You do it for increase, ô straunge excuse!
    VVhen reason is the bawd to lusts abuse.

    Call it not loue, for loue to heauen is fled,
    Since sweating lust on earth vsurpt his name,
    795Vnder whose simple semblance he hath fed,
    Vpon fresh beautie, blotting it with blame;
    VVhich the hot tyrant staines, & soone bereaues:
    As Caterpillers do the tender leaues.

    Loue comforteth like sun-shine after raine,
    800But lusts effect is tempest after sunne,
    Loues gentle spring doth alwayes fresh remaine,
    Lusts winter comes, ere sommer halfe be donne:
    Loue surfets not, lust like a glutton dies:
    Loue is all truth, lust full of forged lies.

    805More I could tell, but more I dare not say,
    The text is old, the Orator too greene,
    Therefore in sadnesse, now I will away,
    My face is full of shame, my heart of teene,
    Mine eares that to your wanton talke attended,
    810 Do burne them selues, for hauing so offended.