From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty's rose might never die,
But as the riper should by time decease,
His tender heir might bear his memory:
But thou, contracted to thine own bright eyes,
Feed'st thy light's flame with self-substantial fuel,
Making a famine where abundance lies,
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.
Thou that art now the world's fresh ornament
And only herald to the gaudy spring,
Within thine own bud buriest thy content
And, tender churl, mak’st waste in niggarding.

Pity the world, or else this glutton be,
To eat the world's due, by the grave and thee.

When forty winters shall besiege thy brow,
And dig deep trenches in thy beauty's field,
Thy youth's proud livery, so gazed on now,
Will be a tatter'd weed, of small worth held:
Then being ask'd where all thy beauty lies,
Where all the treasure of thy lusty days,

within thine own deep-sunken eyes,
Were an all-eating shame and thriftless praise.
How much more praise deserved thy beauty's use,
If thou couldst answer "This fair child of mine
Shall sum my count and make my

old excuse, Proving his beauty by succession thine !

This were to be new made when thou art old, And see thy blood warm when thou feel'st it cold. Stirpibus a pulchris pulchra est optanda propago,

Vt roseum possit stare perenne decus; Et, quotiens acto pereat maturior aevo,

, In tenerum heredem forma paterna cadat. Tu vis ipse tuo tantum devotus amori

Vivere, tu flammis ureris ipse tuis.
Quantis ex opibus penuria quanta paratur,

O te qui laceras, o inimice tibi !
Tu, nova totius iam lux et gloria terrae,

Veris venturi nuntia purpurei,
Visne tuam in sterili spem fructus condere gemma?

Prodige, dum parcis; parce, profuse tamen! Aut patriae miserere, aut, dum male condis avarus

Quod patriae debes, fac Libitina voret.

Bruma tibi obsidet cum bis vigesima frontem

Actaque per pulchras ruga profunda genas, ,
Tum iuvenile decus, quo iam spectaris amictu,

Et lacerum et pretii nullius istud erit. Deinde requirenti quo forma recesserit oris,

, Quo vigor et vegetus fugerit ille dies, Reddere cuncta tuis oculorum ea mersa cavernis'

Et scelus et damnum flebile laudis erat. Tu potius reddas, formae bene dotibus usus,

Filius, en, heres, pulcher et ipse, meus.' · Ille meum exsolvat nomen, veniamque senectae

Conciliet nato tradita forma patris.'
Sic iterum renovare senex, et sanguinis in te

Quod gelidum sentis inde calere vides.

Look in thy glass, and tell the face thou viewest
Now is the time that face should form another;
Whose fresh repair if now thou not renewest,
Thou dost beguile the world, unbless some mother.
For where is she so fair whose unear'd womb
Disdains the tillage of thy husbandry ?
Or who is he so fond will be the tomb
Of his self-love, to stop posterity?
Thou art thy mother's glass, and she in thee
Calls back the lovely April of her prime:
So thou through windows of thine


shalt see Despite of wrinkles this thy golden time.

But if thou live, remember'd not to be,
Die single, and thine image dies with thee.

Unthrifty loveliness, why dost thou spend
Upon thyself thy beauty's legacy?
Nature's bequest gives nothing, but doth lend,
And being frank she lends to those are free.
Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
The bounteous largess given thee to give ?
Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live?
For having traffic with thyself alone,
Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive.
Then how, when nature calls thee to be gone,
What acceptable audit canst thou leave?

Thy unus'd beauty must be tomb'd with thee,

Which, used, lives th' executor to be.

In speculum spectans dic oris imagine visa

'Tempus adest facies ut creet ista novam.' Eius enim integram ni vis reparare iuventam,

Fraus erit, ac cuidam matris ademptus honos. Quaene ita pulchra vides telluris virginis arva

Vt dedignentur vomere culta tuo?
Quisve suum in sese sepelit vesanus amorem

Contentus clausa posteritate mori?
Te tua mater habet speculo, qua reddita cernit

Pulchra iuventutis tempora verque suae; Perque senes oculos olim rugasque videbis

Ipse tibi hanc auream rursus adesse diem. Sive agis ut nequid post te vel imaginis exstet, Fac pereas caelebs, ac simul illa perit


IV Consumas in tene, nepos pulcherrime, formam

Quae tibi ab antiquis tradita venit avis ? Mancipio nil dat rerum natura, sed usum

Commodat, in largos liberiore manu. Quodque ea largitur quo largirere vicissim,

Hoc es abusurus, pulcher, avare tamen? Vsurasne facis sine faenore? ponis in usu

Summarum has summas, vivere deinde nequis ? Nam tua si tecum solo commercia fient,

Surripies furtim te tibi, dulce caput.
Quas igitur tabulas aut testamenta relinques

Iusta tuis, hinc te cum tua fata ferent?
Forma, nisi uteris, tecum tumulabitur ista;

Vtere, tunc heres vixerit ista tuus.

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