Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. II. Ben Jonson to Dryden
Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. II. The Seventeenth Century: Ben Jonson to Dryden
Extracts from Hudibras: Amantium Irae
By Samuel Butler (1612–1680)
[From Part III.]

ALTHOUGH some fits of small contest
Sometimes fall out among the best,
That is no more than every lover
Does from his hackney-lady suffer,
That makes no breach of faith and love,        5
But rather sometimes serves to improve.
For as in running every pace
Is but between two legs a race,
In which both do their uttermost
To get before and win the post,        10
Yet when they ’re at their races’ ends
They ’re still as kind and constant friends,
And, to relieve their weariness,
By turns give one another ease;
So all those false alarms of strife        15
Between the husband and the wife,
And little quarrels, often prove
To be but new recruits of love,
When those who ’re always kind or coy
In time must either tire or cloy.        20

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