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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Songs and Their Settings
Lady Hero’s Epitaph
By William Shakespeare (1564–1616)
 
From ‘Much Ado About Nothing

Scene: The Inside of a Church.  Enter Don Pedro, Claudio, and Attendants, with music and tapers.

CLAUDIO—Is this the monument of Leonato?
  Attendants—It is, my lord.
  Claudio  [reads]—

EPITAPH
      Done to death by slanderous tongues
        Was the Hero that here lies:
      Death, in guerdon of her wrongs,        5
        Gives her fame which never dies.
      So the life that died with shame
      Lives in death with glorious fame.
      Hang thou there upon the tomb,
      Praising her when I am dumb.—        10
Now, music, sound, and sing your solemn hymn.
 
SONG
      Pardon, goddess of the night,
      Those that slew thy virgin bright;
      For the which, with songs of woe,
      Round about her tomb we go.        15
      Midnight, assist our moan;
      Help us to sigh and groan,
            Heavily, heavily:
      Graves, yawn, and yield your dead,
      Till death be utterèd,        20
            Heavily, heavily.
 
 
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