William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

Sonnet 84: Who is it that says most, which can say more


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
Which 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
That 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,
Making his style admirèd everywhere.
You to your beauteous blessings add a curse,
Being fond on praise, which makes your praises worse.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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