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But ah, beleeue me, there is more then so
That workes such wonders in the minds of men.
I that have often prou'd, too well it know;
And who so list the like assayes to ken,
Shall find by tryall, and confesse it then,
That Beautie is not, as fond men misdeeme,
An outward shew of things, that onely seeme.
For that same goodly hew of white and red,
With which the cheekes are sprinckled, shal

And those sweete rosy leaues so fairely spred
Vpon the lips, shall fade and fall away
To that they were, euen to corrupted clay.
That golden wyre, those sparckling stars so

Shall turne to dust, and loose their goodly light.
But that faire lampe, from whose celestiall ray
That light proceedes, which kindleth louers fire,
Shall neuer be extinguisht nor decay, IOI
But when the vitall spirits doe expyre,
Vnto her natiue planet shall retyre,
For it is heauenly borne and can not die,
Being a parcell of the purest skie.

For when the soule, the which deriued was
At first, out of that great immortall Spright,
By whom all liue to loue, whilome did pas
Downe from the top of purest heauens hight,
To be embodied here, it then tooke light 110
And liuely spirits from that fayrest starre,
Which lights the world forth from his firie carre.
Which powre retayning still or more or lesse,
When she in fleshly seede is eft enraced,
Through euery part she doth the same im-


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The most resemblance of that heauenly light,
Frame to themselues most beautifull and braue
Their fleshly bowre, most fit for their delight,
And the grosse matter by a soueraine might
Tempers so trim, that it may well be seene,
A pallace fit for such a virgin Queene.
So euery spirit, as it is most pure,
And hath in it the more of heauenly light,
So it the fairer bodie doth procure
To habit in, and it more fairely dight
With chearefull grace and amiable sight.
For of the soule the bodie forme doth take:
For soule is forme, and doth the bodie make.



Therefore where euer that thou doest behold
A comely corpse, with beautie faire endewed,
Know this for certaine, that the same doth hold
A beauteous soule, with faire conditions thewed,
Fit to receiue the seede of vertue strewed.
For all that faire is, is by nature good;
That is a signe to know the gentle blood. 140
Yet oft it falles, that many a gentle mynd
Dwels in deformed tabernacle drownd,
Either by chaunce, against the course of kynd,
Or through vnaptneffe in the substance fownd,
Which it assumed of some stubborne grownd,
That will not yield vnto her formes direction,
But is perform'd with some foule imperfection.
And oft it falles (ay me the more to rew)
Is foule abusd, and that celestiall hew,
That goodly beautie, albe heauenly borne,
Which doth the world with her delight adorne,
Made but the bait of sinne, and sinners scorne;
Whilest euery one doth seeke and sew to haue it,
But euery one doth seeke, but to depraue it.
Yet nathemore is that faire beauties blame,
But theirs that do abuse it vnto ill:
Nothing so good, but that through guilty shame
May be corrupt, and wrested vnto will.
How ever fleshes fault it filthy make:
Nathelesse the soule is faire and beauteous still,
For things immortall no corruption take.
But ye faire Dames, the worlds deare orna-



And liuely images of heauens light,
Let not your beames with such disparagements
Be dimd, and your bright glorie darkned quight:
But mindfull still of your first countries sight,
Doe still preserue your first informed grace,
Whose shadow yet shynes in your beauteous

Loath that foule blot, that hellish fierbrand,
Disloiall lust, faire beauties foulest blame, 170
That base affections, which your eares would

Commend to you by loues abused name;
But is indeede the bondslaue of defame,
Which will the garland of your glorie marre,
And quench the light of your bright shyning

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Therefore to make your beautie more appeare,
It you behoues to loue, and forth to lay
That heauenly riches, which in you ye beare,
That men the more admyre their fountaine may,
For else what booteth that celestiall ray,
If it in darknesse be enshrined euer,
That it of louing eyes be vewed neuer ?

But in your choice of Loues, this well aduize,
That likest to your selues ye them select, 191
The which your forms first sourse may sym-

And with like beauties parts be inly deckt:
For if you loosely loue without respect,

It is no loue, but a discordant warre,

Counting it fairer, then it is indeede, 230 And yet indeede her fairenesse doth exceede.

For louers eyes more sharply sighted bee Then other mens, and in deare loues delight See more then any other eyes can see, Through mutuall receipt of beames bright, And to their eyes that inmost faire display, Which carrie priuie message to the spright, As plaine as light discouers dawning day.

Therein they see through amorous eye-glaunces,
Armies of loues still flying too and fro,
Which dart at them their litle fierie launces,


Whose vnlike parts amongst themselues do Whom hauing wounded, backe againe they go,


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And know ech other here belou'd to bee.

Then wrong it were that any other twaine Should in loues gentle band combyned bee, But those whom heauen did at first ordaine, And made out of one mould the more t'agree: For all that like the beautie which they see, Streight do not loue: for loue is not so light, As streight to burne at first beholders sight. /But they which loue indeede, looke otherwise, With pure regard and spotlesse true intent, Drawing out of the obiect of their eyes, A more refyned forme, which they present Vnto their mind, voide of all blemishment; Which it reducing to her first perfection, Beholdeth free from fleshes frayle infection.


And then conforming it vnto the light,
Which in it selfe it hath remaining still
Of that first Sunne, yet sparckling in his sight,
Thereof he fashions in his higher skill,
An heauenly beautie to his fancies will,
And it embracing in his mind entyre,
The mirrour of his owne thought doth admyre.

Which seeing now so inly faire to be,
As outward it appeareth to the eye,
And with his spirits proportion to agree,
He thereon fixeth all his fantasie,
And fully setteth his felicitie,

Carrying compassion to their louely foe;
Who seeing her faire eyes so sharpe effect,
Cures all their sorrowes with one sweete aspect.

In which how many wonders doe they reede
To their conceipt, that others neuer see,
Now of her smiles, with which their soules they

Like Gods with Nectar in their bankets free,
Now of her lookes, which like to Cordials bee;
But when her words embassade forth she sends,
Lord how sweete musicke that vnto them lends.

Sometimes vpon her forhead they behold
A thousand Graces masking in delight,
Sometimes within her eye-lids they vnfold
Ten thousand sweet belgards, which to their

Doe seeme like twinckling starres in frostie night:

But on her lips, like rosy buds in May,
So many millions of chaste pleasures play.

All those, O Cytherea, and thousands more 260 Thy handmaides be, which do on thee attend To decke thy beautie with their dainties store, That may it more to mortall eyes commend, And make it more admyr'd of foe and frend; That in mens harts thou mayst thy throne enstall

And spred thy louely kingdome ouer all.

Then Iö tryumph, O great beauties Queene,
Aduance the banner of thy conquest hie,
That all this world, the which thy vassals beene,
May draw to thee, and with dew fealtie, 270
Adore the powre of thy great Maiestie,
Singing this Hymne in honour of thy name,
Compyld by me, which thy poore liegeman am.

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In lieu whereof graunt, O great Soueraine, That she whose conquering beautie doth captiue

My trembling hart in her eternall chaine,
One drop of grace at length will to me giue,
That I her bounden thrall by her may liue,
And this same life, which first fro me she

May owe to her, of whom I it receaued.


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And you faire Venus dearling, my deare dread,
Fresh flowre of grace, great Goddesse of my life,
When your faire eyes these fearefull lines shal

Deigne to let fall one drop of dew reliefe,
That may recure my harts long pyning griefe,
And shew what wondrous powre your beauty

280 That can restore a damned wight from death.



Oue, lift me vp vpon thy golden wings, From this base world vnto thy heauens hight,

Where I may see those admirable things, Which there thou workest by thy soueraine might,

Farre aboue feeble reach of earthly sight,
That I thereof an heauenly Hymne may sing
Vnto the god of Loue, high heauens king.
Many lewd layes (ah woe is me the more)
In praise of that mad fit, which fooles call

I haue in th'heat of youth made heretofore,
That in light wits did loose affection moue. II
But all those follies now I do reproue,
And turned haue the tenor of my string,
The heauenly prayses of true loue to sing.
And ye that wont with greedy vaine desire
To reade my fault, and wondring at my flame,
To warme your selues at my wide sparckling

Sith now that heat is quenched, quench my


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It lou'd it selfe, because it selfe was faire ;
(For faire is lou'd ;) and of it selfe begot
Like to it selfe his eldest sonne and heire,
Eternall, pure, and voide of sinfull blot,
The firstling of his ioy, in whom no iot
Of loues dislike, or pride was to be found,
Whom he therefore with equall honour crownd.
With him he raignd, before all time prescribed,
In endlesse glorie and immortall might,
Together with that third from them deriued,
Most wise, most holy, most almightie Spright,
Whose kingdomes throne no thought of earthly


Can comprehend, much lesse my trembling verse
With equall words can hope it to reherse.
Yet O most blessed Spirit, pure lampe of light,
Eternall spring of grace and wisedome trew,
Vouchsafe to shed into my barren spright,
Some little drop of thy celestiall dew,
That may my rymes with sweet infuse embrew,
And giue me words equall vnto my thought,
Yet being pregnant still with powrefull grace,
To tell the marueiles by thy mercie wrought.
And full of fruitfull loue, that loues to get 51
Things like himselfe, and to enlarge his race,
His second brood though not in powre so great,
Yet full of beautie, next he did beget
An infinite increase of Angels bright,
All glistring glorious in their Makers light.
To them the heauens illimitable hight,
Not this round heauen, which we from hence behold,
Adornd with thousand lamps of burning light,
And with ten thousand gemmes of shyning gold,
He gaue as their inheritance to hold,
That they might serue him in eternall blis,
And be partakers of those ioyes of his.


There they in their trinall triplicities
About him wait, and on his will depend,
Either with nimble wings to cut the skies,
When he them on his messages doth send,
Or on his owne dread presence to attend,
Where they behold the glorie of his light,
And caroll Hymnes of loue both day and night.
Both day and night is vnto them all one, 71
For he his beames doth still to them extend,
That darknesse there appeareth neuer none,
Ne hath their day, ne hath their blisse an end,
But there their termelesse time in pleasure

Ne euer should their happinesse decay,
Had not they dar'd their Lord to disobay.
But pride impatient of long resting peace,
Did puffe them vp with greedy bold ambition,
That they gan cast their state how to increase
Aboue the fortune of their first condition, 81
And sit in Gods owne seat without commission:
The brightest Angell, euen the Child of light,
Drew millions more against their God to fight.

Th'Almighty seeing their so bold assay,
Kindled the flame of his consuming yre,
And with his onely breath them blew away
From heauens hight, to which they did aspyre,
To deepest hell, and lake of damned fyre;
Where they in darknesse and dread horror

Hating the happie light from which they fell.

So that next off-spring of the Makers loue,
Next to himselfe in glorious degree,
Degendering to hate, fell from aboue

Such he him made, that he resemble might
Himselfe, as mortall thing immortall could;
Him to be Lord of euery liuing wight,
He made by loue out of his owne like mould,
In whom he might his mightie selfe behould:
For loue doth loue the thing belou'd to see,
That like it selfe in louely shape may bee.
But man forgetfull of his makers grace,
No lesse then Angels, whom he did ensew,
Fell from the hope of promist heauenly place,
Into the mouth of death, to sinners dew,
And all his off-spring into thraldome threw :
Where they for euer should in bonds remaine,
Of neuer dead, yet euer dying paine.



Till that great Lord of Loue, which him at first
Made of meere loue, and after liked well,
Seeing him lie like creature long accurst,
In that deepe horror of despeyred hell,
Him wretch in doole would let no lenger dwell,
But cast out of that bondage to redeeme,
And pay the price, all were his debt extreeme.
Out of the bosome of eternall blisse,
In which he reigned with his glorious syre,
He downe descended, like a most demisse
And abiect thrall, in fleshes fraile attyre,
That he for him might pay sinnes deadly hyre,
And him restore vnto that happie state,
In which he stood before his haplesse fate. 140

In flesh at first the guilt committed was,
Therefore in flesh it must be satisfyde:
Nor spirit, nor Angell, though they man surpas,
Could make amends to God for mans misguyde,

Through pride; (for pride and loue may ill But onely man himselfe, who selfe did slyde.


And now of sinne to all ensample bee:
How then can sinfull flesh it selfe assure,
Sith purest Angels fell to be impure?

But that eternall fount of loue and grace,
Still flowing forth his goodnesse vnto all, 100
Now seeing left a waste and emptie place
In his wyde Pallace, through those Angels fall,
Cast to supply the same, and to enstall
A new vnknowen Colony therein,
Whose root from earths base groundworke
shold begin.

Therefore of clay, base, vile, and next to nought,
Yet form'd by wondrous skill, and by his might:
According to an heauenly patterne wrought,
Which he had fashiond in his wise foresight,
He man did make, and breathd a liuing spright
Into his face most beautifull and fayre, III
Endewd with wisedomes riches, heauenly, rare.

So taking flesh of sacred virgins wombe,
For mans deare sake he did a man become.

And that most blessed bodie, which was borne
Without all blemish or reprochfull blame,
He freely gaue to be both rent and torne 150
Of cruell hands, who with despightfull shame
Reuyling him, that them most vile became,
At length him nayled on a gallow tree,
And slew the iust, by most vniust decree.
O huge and most vnspeakeable impression
Of loues deepe wound, that pierst the piteous

Of that deare Lord with so entyre affection,
And sharply launching euery inner part,
Dolours of death into his soule did dart;
Doing him die, that neuer it deserued, 160
To free his foes, that from his heast had

What hart can feele least touch of so sore launch,

Or thought can think the depth of so deare wound?

Whose bleeding sourse their streames yet neuer staunch,



But stil do flow, and freshly still redound,
To heale the sores of sinfull soules vnsound,
And clense the guilt of that infected cryme,
Which was enrooted in all fleshly slyme.
O blessed well of loue, O floure of grace,
O glorious Morning starre, O lampe of light,
Most liuely image of thy fathers face,
Eternall King of glorie, Lord of might,
Meeke lambe of God before all worlds behight,
How can we thee requite for all this good?
Or what can prize that thy most precious blood?
Yet nought thou ask'st in lieu of all this loue,
But loue of vs for guerdon of thy paine.
Ay me; what can vs lesse then that behoue?
Had he required life of vs againe,
Had it beene wrong to aske his owne with gaine?
He gaue vs life, he it restored lost;
Then life were least, that vs so litle cost.
But he our life hath left vnto vs free,
Free that was thrall, and blessed that was band;
Ne ought demaunds, but that we louing bee,
As he himselfe hath lou'd vs afore hand,
And bound therto with an eternall band,
Him first to loue, that vs so dearely bought,
And next, our brethren to his image wrought.
Him first to loue, great right and reason is,
Who first to vs our life and being gaue;
And after when we fared had amisse,
Vs wretches from the second death did saue;
And last the food of life, which now we haue,
Euen himselfe in his deare sacrament,
To feede our hungry soules vnto vs lent.
Then next to loue our brethren, that were made
Of that selfe mould, and that selfe makers hand,
That we, and to the same againe shall fade,
Where they shall haue like heritage of land,
How euer here on higher steps we stand; 201
Which also were with selfe same price re-


That we, how euer of vs light esteemed.
And were they not, yet since that louing Lord
Commaunded vs to loue them for his sake,
Euen for his sake, and for his sacred word,
Which in his last bequest he to vs spake,
We should them loue, and with their needs

Knowing that whatsoere to them we giue,
We giue to him, by whom we all doe liue. 210

Such mercy he by his most holy reede
Vnto vs taught, and to approue it trew,
Ensampled it by his most righteous deede,
Shewing vs mercie, miserable crew,
That we the like should to the wretches shew,
And loue our brethren; thereby to approue,
How much himselfe that loued vs, we loue.
Then rouze thy selfe, O earth, out of thy soyle,
In which thou wallowest like to filthy swyne
And doest thy mynd in durty pleasures moyle,
Vnmindfull of that dearest Lord of thyne ; 221
Lift vp to him thy heauie clouded eyne,
That thou his soueraine bountie mayst behold,
And read through loue his mercies manifold.
Beginne from first, where he encradled was
Betweene the toylefull Oxe and humble Asse,
In simple cratch, wrapt in a wad of hay,
And in what rags, and in how base aray,
The glory of our heauenly riches lay,
When him the silly Shepheards came to see,
Whom greatest Princes sought on lowest knee.
From thence reade on the storie of his life,
His humble carriage, his vnfaulty wayes,
His cancred foes, his fights, his toyle, his strife,
His paines, his pouertie, his sharpe assayes,
Through which he past his miserable dayes,
Offending none, and doing good to all,
Yet being malist both of great and small.
And looke at last how of most wretched wights,
How with most scornefull taunts, and fell
He taken was, betrayd, and false accused, 240


He was reuyld, disgrast, and foule abused, How scourgd, how crownd, how buffeted, how brused;

And lastly how twixt robbers crucifyde,
With bitter wounds through hands, through
feet and syde.

Then let thy flinty hart that feeles no paine,
Empierced be with pittifull remorse,
And let thy bowels bleede in euery vaine,
At sight of his most sacred heauenly corse,
So torne and mangled with malicious forse,
And let thy soule, whose sins his sorrows


Melt into teares, and grone in grieued thought. With sence whereof whilest so thy softened spirit

Is inly toucht, and humbled with meeke zeale,
Through meditation of his endlesse merit,
Lift vp thy mind to th'author of thy weale,
And to his soueraine mercie doe appeale;
Learne him to loue, that loued thee so deare,
And in thy brest his blessed image beare. 259

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