Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Lucrece (Quarto, 1594)
  • Editor: Hardy M. Cook
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-411-0

    Copyright Hardy M. Cook. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Hardy M. Cook
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Lucrece (Quarto, 1594)


    This picture shee aduisedly perus'd,
    And chid the Painter for his wondrous skill:
    Saying, some shape in SINONS was abus'd,
    1530So faire a forme lodg'd not a mind so ill,
    And still on him shee gaz'd, and gazing still,
    Such signes of truth in his plaine face shee spied,
    That shee concludes, the Picture was belied.

    It cannot be (quoth she) that so much guile,
    1535(Shee would haue said) can lurke in such a looke:
    But TARQVINS shape, came in her mind the while,
    And from her tongue, can lurk, from cannot, tooke
    It cannot be, shee in that sence forsooke,
    And turn'd it thus, it cannot be I find,
    1540 But such a face should beare a wicked mind.

    For euen as subtill SINON here is painted,
    So sober sad, so wearie, and so milde,
    (As if with griefe or trauaile he had fainted)
    To me came TARQVIN armed to beguild
    1545With outward honestie, but yet defild
    With inward vice, as PRIAM him did cherish:
    So did I TARQVIN, so my Troy did perish.