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Torches are made to light, jewels to wear,
Dainties to taste, fresh beauty for the use;
Herbs for their smell, and sappy plants to bear;
Things growing to themselves are growth's abuse":
Seeds spring from seeds, and beauty breedeth

Thou wast begot",-to get it is thy duty.


Upon the earth's increase why should'st thou feed, Unless the earth with thy increase be fed?

By law of nature thou art bound to breed,

That thine may live, when thou thyself art dead;
And so, in spite of death, thou dost survive,
In that thy likeness still is left alive.

By this, the love-sick queen began to sweat,
For, where they lay, the shadow had forsook them,

6 Things GROWING TO THEMSELVES are growth's abuse:] Alluding to twinn'd cherries, apples, peaches, &c. which accidentally grow into each other. Thus our author says, King Henry VIII. and Francis I. embraced "as they grew together." STEEVENS.


Shakspeare, I think, meant to say no more than this; those things which grow only to [or for] themselves," without producing any fruit, or benefiting mankind, do not answer the purpose for which they were intended. Thus, in a subsequent passage:

"So in thyself thyself art made away."

Again, in our author's 95th Sonnet :


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The summer's flower is to the summer sweet,

Though to itself it only live and die."

Again, more appositely in the present poem :

"Poor flower! quoth she, this was thy father's guise,—

"For every little grief to wet his


"To grow unto himself was his desire,

"And so 'tis thine-." MALONE.

7 Thou WAST begot -] So the quarto 1593. The copy of 1600 and the later editions read less correctly-" Thou wert."

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-] i. e. upon the produce of


And Titan, tired in the mid-day heat,
With burning eye did hotly overlook them;
Wishing Adonis had his team to guide,

So he were like him, and by Venus' side.

And now Adonis, with a lazy spright,
And with a heavy, dark, disliking eye,
His low'ring brows o'er-whelming his fair sight,
Like misty vapours, when they blot the sky,-
Souring his cheeks ', cries, Fie, no more of love;
The sun doth burn my face; I must remove.

Ah me, (quoth Venus,) young, and so unkind??
What bare excuses mak'st thou to be gone!
I'll sigh celestial breath, whose gentle wind
Shall cool the heat of this descending sun;

I'll make a shadow for thee of my hairs;

If they burn too, I'll quench them with my tears. The sun that shines from heaven, shines but warm", And lo, I lie between that sun and thee;

9 And Titan-with burning eye, &c.] So, in King Henry V.: like a lackey, from the rise to set,


"Sweats in the eye of Phoebus." MALONE.

"Titan tired," is Titan attired.


SOURING his CHEEKS,] So, in Coriolanus:

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Some news is come,

"That turns their countenances."

Again, in Timon of Athens:


"Has friendship such a faint and milky heart,
"It turns in less than two nights?" MALONE.
YOUNG, and so UNKIND?]

So, in K. Lear, Act I. Sc. I. :

"So young, and so untender?" STEEVENS.

3 What bare excuses mak'st thou -] Things easily seen through and refuted. So, in K. Henry IV. Part I. vol. xvi. p. 217: "Never did bare and rotten policy

"Colour her working with such deadly wounds."

4 I'll SIGH celestial BREATH,] So, in Coriolanus :

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Sigh'd truer breath." MALONE.


5 The sun that shines from heaven, shines but warm,] The

The heat I have from thence doth little harm,
Thine eye darts forth the fire that burneth me:
And were I not immortal, life were done",
Between this heavenly and earthly sun.

Art thou obdurate, flinty, hard as steel,
Nay more than flint, for stone at rain relenteth?
Art thou a woman's son, and canst not feel
What 'tis to love? how want of love tormenteth ?
O, had thy mother borne so hard a mind”,

She had not brought forth thee, but died unkind.

What am I, that thou should'st contemn me this?? Or what great danger dwells upon my suit?

sun affords only a natural and genial heat: "it warms, but it does not burn. "Thou sun," exclaims Timon, Act V. Sc. II. "that comfort'st, burn!" MALone.

So, in King Lear :


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her eyes are fierce, but thine

"Do comfort, and not burn." W.

life were done,] i. e. expended, consumed. So, in Timon of Athens :

"Now Lord Timon's happy hours are done and past."


7 O, had thy mother borne sO HARD a mind.] So, in All's Well That Ends Well:

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but you are cold and stern;

"And now you should be as your mother was,
"When your sweet self was got."

Thus the quarto 1593. In the copy of 1596, bad is inserted instead of hard. The context shews that the latter was the poet's word.

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8 - UNKIND.] That is, unnatural. Kind and nature were formerly synonymous. MALONE.

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• What am I, that thou should'st contemn` me THIS?] That thou should'st contemn me this," means, "that thou should'st contemptously refuse this favour that I ask."

The original copy, as well as that of 1596, both read as I have printed the text; and I have not the least suspicion of its being erroneous. MALONE.

I suppose, without regard to the exactness of the rhyme, we

What were thy lips the worse for one poor kiss? Speak, fair; but speak fair words, or else be mute : Give me one kiss, I'll give it thee again,

And one for interest, if thou wilt have twain.

Fie, lifeless picture, cold and senseless stone,
Well-painted idol, image, dull and dead,
Statue, contenting but the eye alone,

Thing like a man, but of no woman bred ;
Thou are no man, though of a man's complexion,
For men will kiss even by their own direction.

This said, impatience chokes her pleading tongue,
And swelling passion doth provoke a pause;
Red cheeks and firy eyes blaze forth her wrong;
Being judge in love, she cannot right her cause:
And now she weeps, and now she fain would

And now her sobs do her intendments1 break.

Sometimes she shakes her head, and then his hand,
Now gazeth she on him, now on the ground;
Sometimes her arms infold him like a band;
She would, he will not in her arms be bound:
And when from thence he struggles to be gone,
She locks her lily fingers, one in one 2.

should read-thus. Thus and kiss correspond in sound as well as unlikely and quickly, adder and shudder, which we meet with afterwards. STEEVENS.


her INTENDMENTS] i. e. intentions. Thus, in Every Man in his Humour: " - but I, spying his intendment, discharg'd my petronel into his bosom." STEEVENS.

2 She locks HER lily fingers, one in one.] Should we not read

"She locks their lily fingers, one in one." FARMER.

I do not see any need of change.-The arms of Venus at present infold Adonis. To prevent him from escaping, she renders her hold more secure, by locking her hands together.

So above:

Fondling, she saith, since I have hemm'd thee here,
Within the circuit of this ivory pale,

I'll be a park, and thou shalt be my deer3;
Feed where thou wilt, on mountain or in dale:
Graze on my lips; and, if those hills be dry,
Stray lower, where the pleasant fountains lie".

Within this limit is relief enough,

Sweet bottom-grass, and high delightful plain, Round rising hillocks, brakes obscure and rough, To shelter thee from tempest and from rain; Then be my deer, since I am such a park;

No dog shall rouze thee, though a thousand bark.

At this Adonis smiles, as in disdain,
That in each cheek appears a pretty dimple:
Love made those hollows, if himself were slain,
He might be buried in a tomb so simple ;

Fore-knowing well, if there he came to lie,
Why there Love liv'd, and there he could not die.

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Sometimes her arms infold him like a band." And afterwards:

"The time is spent, her object will away,

"And from her twining arms doth urge relieving." MALONE. 3 I'll be a park, and thou shalt be my deer ;] So the original copy, 1593. The edition of 1596 has the park, which has been followed in the modern editions. The image presented here occurs again in The Comedy of Errors:


my decayed fair,

"A sunny look of his would soon repair;
"But, too unruly deer, he breaks the pale,
"And feeds from home." MALONE.

Again, in The Merry Wives of Windsor: "I will never take you for my love again, but I will always count you my dear."



4 FEED where thou wilt, on mountain or in dale; Graze on my lips ;] So, in Love's Labour's Lost: unless we feed on your lips." MALONE. where the PLEASANT FOUNTAINS lie.] So Strumbo, in the tragedy of Locrine:



the pleasant water of your secret fountain." AMNER.

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