Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Elizabethan Verse
William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Elizabethan Verse.  1907.
The Full Love Is Hushed
By William Shakespeare (1564–1616)
MY 1 love is strengthened, though more weak in seeming;
I love not less, though less the show appear:
That love is merchandised 2 whose rich esteeming
The owner’s tongue doth publish everywhere.
Our love was new, and then but in the spring,        5
When I was wont to greet it with my lays;
As Philomel in summer’s front 3 doth sing
And stops her pipe in growth of riper days:
Not that the summer is less pleasant now
Than when her mournful hymns did hush the night,        10
But that wild music burthens every bough,
And sweets grown common lose their dear delight.
  Therefore, like her, I sometime hold my tongue,
  Because I would not dull you with my song.
Note 1. Sonnet cii. Shake-speare’s Sonnettes, 1609. An apology for having ceased to sing. (See Sonnet ci., Dowden ed., p. 101.) [back]
Note 2. That love is merchandised: cf. Love’s Labour’s Lost, act ii. sc. 1:
            My beauty, though but mean,
Needs not the painted flourish of your praise:
Beauty is bought by judgment of the eye,
Not uttered by base sale of chapman’s tongues.
Note 3. In summer’s front: cf. Winter’s Tale, act iv. sc. 4:
          No shepherdess, but Flora
Peering in April’s front.

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