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)

    Ouer one arme the lustie coursers raine,
    Vnder her other was the tender boy,
    Who blusht, and powted in a dull disdaine,
    With leaden appetite, vnapt to toy,
    35 She red, and hot, as coles of glowing fier,
    He red for shame, but frostie in desier.
    The studded bridle on a ragged bough,
    Nimbly she fastens, (ô how quicke is loue!)
    The steed is stalled vp, and euen now,
    40To tie the rider she begins to proue:
    Backward she pusht him, as she would be thrust,
    And gouernd him in strength though not in lust.
    So soone was she along, as he was downe,
    Each leaning on their elbowes and their hips:
    45Now doth she stroke his cheek, now doth he frown,
    And gins to chide, but soone she stops his lips,
    And kissing speaks, with lustful language broken,
    If thou wilt chide, thy lips shall neuer open.
    He burnes with bashfull shame, she with her teares
    50Doth quench the maiden burning of his cheekes,
    Then with her windie sighes, and golden heares,
    To fan, and blow them drie againe she seekes.
    He saith, she is immodest, blames her misse,
    What followes more, she murthers with a kisse.
    55Euen as an emptie Eagle sharpe by fast,
    Tires with her beake on feathers, flesh, and bone,
    Shaking her wings, deuouring all in hast,
    Till either gorge be stuft, or pray be gone:
    Euen so she kist his brow, his cheeke, his chin,
    60 And where she ends, she doth anew begin.