Internet Shakespeare Editions

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)


    So in thy selfe, thy selfe art made away,
    A mischiefe worse then ciuill home-bred strife,
    765Or theirs whose desperat hands them selues do slay,
    Or butcher sire, that reaues his sonne of life:
    Foule cankring rust, the hidden treasure frets,
    But gold that's put to vse more gold begets.

    Nay then (quoth Adon) you will fall againe,
    770Into your idle ouer-handled theame,
    The kisse I gaue you is bestow'd in vaine,
    And all in vaine you striue against the streame,
    For by this black-fac't night, desires foule nourse,
    Your treatise makes me like you, worse & worse.

    775If loue haue lent you twentie thousand tongues,
    And euerie tongue more mouing then your owne,
    Bewitching like the wanton Marmaids songs,
    Yet from mine eare the tempting tune is blowne,
    For know my heart stands armed in mine eare,
    780 And will not let a false sound enter there.

    Lest the deceiuing harmonie should ronne,
    Into the quiet closure of my brest,
    And then my litle heart were quite vndone,
    In his bed-chamber to be bard of rest,
    785 No Ladie no, my heart longs not to grone,
    But soundly sleeps, while now it sleeps alone.