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THE PASSIONATE PILGRIM. "
WHEN my love swears that she is made of truth
I do believe her, though I know she lies,
That she might think me some untutor'd youth
Unskilful in the world's false forgeries.
Thus vainly thinking that she thinks me young,
Although I know my years be past the best,
I smiling credit her false-speaking tongue,
Out-facing faults in love with love's ill rest.
But wherefore says my love that she is young ?
And wherefore say not I that I am old ?
O! love's best habit is a soothing tongue,
And age, in love, loves not to have years told. .
Therefore I 'll lie with love, and love with me,
Since that our faults in love thus smother'd be.
It was printed with this title-page : "The Passionate Pilgrime By W. Shakespeare. At London Printed for W. Iaggard, and are to be sold by W. Leake, at the Greyhound in Paules Churchyard. 1599," 16mo.
There was also an edition of it in 1612, the title-page of which runs thus :-“The Passionate Pilgrime. Or Certaine Amorous Sonnets, betweene Venus and Adonis, newly corrected and augmented. By W. Shakespere. The third Edition. Where-vnto is newly added two Loue-Epistles, the first from Paris to Hellen, and Hellen's answere backe againe to Paris. Printed by W. laggard. 1612." These love-epistles” were translations from Ovid by Thomas Heywood.
2 When my love swears—] This sonnet is substantially the same as sonnet cxxxviii in the 4to. published by Thorpe in 1609.
Two loves I have,8 of comfort and despair,
Which like two spirits do suggest me still :
The better angel is a man, right fair,
The worser spirit a woman, colour'd ill.
To win me soon to hell, my female evil
Tempteth my better angel from my side,
And would corrupt a saint to be a devil,
Wooing his purity with her fair pride :
And whether that my angel be turn'd fiend,
Suspect I may, but not directly tell ;
For being both to me, both to each friend,
I guess one angel in another's hell.
The truth I shall not know, but live in doubt,
Till my bad angel fire my good one out.
Did not the heavenly rhetoric of thine eye,4
'Gainst whom the world could not hold argument,
Persuade my heart to this false perjury?
Vows for thee broke deserve not punishment.
A woman I forswore ; but I will prove,
Thou being a goddess, I forswore not thee:
My vow was earthly, thou a heavenly love;
Thy grace being gain'd cures all disgrace in me.
: Two loves I have-] This sonnet is also included in the collection of 1609 (Sonnet cxliv), but with some verbal variations.
• Did not the heavenly rhetoric of thine eye,] This sonnet, with slight variations, is found in Love's Labour's Lost, act iv, sc. 3, p. 55.
My vow was breath, and breath a vapour is :
Then thou fair sun, that on this earth dost shine,
Exhale this vapour vow; in thee it is :
If broken, then it is no fault of mine.
If by me broke, what fool is not so wise
To break an oath, to win a paradise ?
Sweet Cytherea, sitting by a brook,
With young Adonis, lovely, fresh and green,
Did court the lad with many a lovely look,
Such looks as none could look but beauty's queen.
She told him stories to delight his ear;
She show'd him favours to allure his eye;
To win his heart she touch'd him here and there :
Touches so soft still conquer chastity.
But whether unripe years did want conceit,
Or he refus'd to take her figur'd proffer,
The tender nibbler would not touch the bait,
But smile and jest at every gentle offer:
Then, fell she on her back, fair queen and toward :
He rose and ran away; ah, fool too froward !
s-her FIGUR’D proffer,] We may suspect, notwithstanding the concurrence of the two ancient editions in our text, that the true reading was “sugar'd proffer", the long s having been, as in some other places, mistaken for the letter f. Shakespeare often uses “sugared” for sweet; and he has “sugared words” twice over in Henry VI, Pt. I, act iii, sc. 3, p. 61.
If love make me forsworn, how shall I swear to love ?
O! never faith could hold, if not to beauty vow'd :
Though to myself forsworn, to thee I 'll constant prove ;
Those thoughts, to me like oaks, to thee like osiers bow'd.
Study his bias leaves, and makes his book thine eyes,
Where all those pleasures live, that art can comprehend.
If knowledge be the mark, to know thee shall suffice;
Well learned is that tongue that well can thee commend;
All ignorant that soul that sees thee without wonder,
Which is to me some praise, that I thy parts admire :
Thine eye Jove's lightning seems, thy voice his dreadful
Which (not to anger bent). is music and sweet fire.
Celestial as thou art, O! do not love that wrong,
To sing the heavens' praise with such an earthly tongue.
Scarce had the sun dried up the dewy morn,
And scarce the herd gone to the hedge for shade,
When Cytherea, all in love forlorn,
A longing tarriance for Adonis made
Under an osier growing by a brook,
A brook where Adon us'd to cool his spleen:
Hot was the day; she hotter that did look
For his approach, that often there had been.
If love make me forsworn,] This poem is read by Sir Nathaniel in Love's Labour's Lost, act iv, sc. 2, p. 50.