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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)

    Euen so poore birds deceiu'd with painted grapes,
    Do surfet by the eye, and pine the maw:
    Euen so she languisheth in her mishaps,
    As those poore birds that helplesse berries saw,
    605 The warme effects which she in him finds missing,
    She seekes to kindle with continuall kissing.
    But all in vaine, good Queene, it will not bee,
    She hath assai'd as much as may be prou'd,
    Her pleading hath deseru'd a greater fee,
    610She's loue; she loues, and yet she is not lou'd,
    Fie, fie, he saies, you crush me, let me go,
    You haue no reason to withhold me so.
    Thou hadst bin gone (quoth she) sweet boy ere this,
    But that thou toldst me, thou woldst hunt the boare,
    615Oh be aduisd, thou know'st not what it is,
    VVith iauelings point a churlish swine to goare,
    VVhose tushes neuer sheathd, he whetteth still,
    Like to a mortall butcher bent to kill.
    On his bow-backe, he hath a battell set,
    620Of brisly pikes that euer threat his foes,
    His eyes like glow-wormes shine, when he doth fret
    His snout digs sepulchers where ere he goes,
    Being mou'd he strikes, what ere is in his way,
    And whom he strikes, his crooked tushes slay.
    625His brawnie sides with hairie bristles armed,
    Are better proofe then thy speares point can enter,
    His short thick necke cannot be easily harmed,
    Being irefull, on the lyon he will venter,
    The thornie brambles, and imbracing bushes,
    630 As fearefull of him part, through whom he rushes.