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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 84


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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 84
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Sonnet 84



The poet reiterates his claim that poems praising the beloved should reflect the beloved’s perfections rather than exaggerate them. He accuses the beloved of caring too much for praise.

Who is it that says most, which can say more
Than this rich praise, that you alone are you,
In whose confine immurèd is the store
4Which should example where your equal grew?
Lean penury within that pen doth dwell
That to his subject lends not some small glory,
But he that writes of you, if he can tell
8That you are you, so dignifies his story.
Let him but copy what in you is writ,
Not making worse what nature made so clear,
And such a counterpart shall fame his wit,
12Making his style admirèd everywhere.
 You to your beauteous blessings add a curse,
 Being fond on praise, which makes your praises worse.