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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 82


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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 82
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Sonnet 82



In this first of two linked sonnets, the poet again addresses the fact that other poets write in praise of the beloved. The beloved is free to read them, but their poems do not represent the beloved truly.

I grant thou wert not married to my muse,
And therefore mayst without attaint o’erlook
The dedicated words which writers use
4Of their fair subject, blessing every book.
Thou art as fair in knowledge as in hue,
Finding thy worth a limit past my praise,
And therefore art enforced to seek anew
8Some fresher stamp of the time-bettering days.
And do so, love; yet when they have devised
What strainèd touches rhetoric can lend,
Thou, truly fair, wert truly sympathized
12In true plain words by thy true-telling friend.
 And their gross painting might be better used
 Where cheeks need blood; in thee it is abused.