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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Song: ‘I told my nymph, I told her true’
By William Shenstone (1714–1763)
 
I TOLD my nymph, I told her true,
My fields were small, my flocks were few;
While faltering accents spoke my fear
That Flavia might not prove sincere.
 
Of crops destroyed by vernal cold,        5
And vagrant sheep that left my fold,—
Of these she heard, yet bore to hear:
And is not Flavia then sincere?
 
How, changed by Fortune’s fickle wind,
The friends I loved became unkind,        10
She heard, and shed a generous tear:
And is not Flavia then sincere?
 
How, if she deigned my love to bless,
My Flavia must not hope for dress,—
This too she heard, and smiled to hear:        15
And Flavia, sure, must be sincere.
 
Go shear your flocks, ye jovial swains!
Go reap the plenty of your plains;
Despoiled of all which you revere,
I know my Flavia’s love sincere.        20
 
 
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