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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 131
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Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Navigate this workShakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 131
The poet disagrees with those who say that his mistress is not beautiful enough to make a lover miserable. He groans for her as for any beauty. Only her behavior, he says, is ugly.
Thou art as tyrannous, so as thou art,
As those whose beauties proudly make them cruel;
For well thou know’st to my dear doting heart
4Thou art the fairest and most precious jewel.
Yet in good faith some say that thee behold,
Thy face hath not the power to make love groan;
To say they err I dare not be so bold,
8Although I swear it to myself alone.
And, to be sure that is not false I swear,
A thousand groans, but thinking on thy face,
One on another’s neck do witness bear
12Thy black is fairest in my judgment’s place.
In nothing art thou black save in thy deeds,
And thence this slander as I think proceeds.