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Nor heauen, nor thou, were made to gaze vpon,
As heauen preserues all things, so saue thou one.
A stately builded ship, well rig'd and tall,
The Ocean maketh more maiesticall:
Why vowest thou then to liue in Sestos heere,
Who on Loues seas more glorious wouldst appeere?
Like vntun'd golden strings all women are,
Which long time lie vntoucht, will harshly iarre.
Vessels of brasse oft handled, brightly shine,
What difference betwixt the richest mine
And basest mold, but vse? for both, not vsde,
Are of like worth. Then treasure is abusde,
When misers keep it; being put to lone,
In time it will returne vs two for one.
Rich robes, themselues and others doe adorne,
Neither themselues nor others, if not worne.
Who builds a pallace and rams vp the gate,
Shall see it ruinous and desolate.
Ah simple Hero, learne thy selfe to cherish,
Lone women like to emptie houses perish.
Lesse sinnes the poore rich man that starues himselfe,
In heaping vp a masse of drossie pelfe,
Than such as you : his golden earth remains,
Which after his disceasse, some other gains.
But this faire iem, sweet in the losse alone,
When you fleet hence, can be bequeath'd to none.
Or if it could, downe from th’enameld skie,
All heauen would come to claime this legacie,
And with intestine broyles the world destroy,
And quite confound natures sweet harmony.
Well therefore by the gods decreed it
We humane creatures should enioy that blis.
One is no number, mayds are nothing then,
Without the sweet societie of men.
Wilt thou liue single still? one shalt thou bee,
Though neuer-singling Hymen couple thee.
Wilde sauages, that drinke of running springs,
Thinke water farre excels all earthly things:
But they that daily taste neat wine, despise it.
Virginitie, albeit some highly prise it,
Compar'd with marriage, had you tride them both,
Differs as much as wine and water doth.
Base boullion for the stamps sake we allow,
Euen so for mens impression doe we you.
By which alone, our reuerend fathers say;
Women receiue perfection euerie way.
This idoll which you terme Virginitie,
Is neither essence subiect to the eie,
No, nor to any one exterior sence,
Nor hath it any place of residence,
Nor is❜t of earth or mold celestiall,
Or capable of any forme at all.
Of that which hath no being, doe not boast,
Things that are not at all, are neuer lost.
Men foolishly doe call it vertuous,
What vertue is it, that is borne with vs ?
Much lesse can honour be ascrib'd thereto,
Honour is purchas'd by the deedes wee do.
Beleeue me Hero, honour is not wone,
Vntill some honourable deed be done.
Seeke you for chastitie, immortall fame,
And know that some haue wrong'd Dianas name?
Whose name is it, if she be false or not,
So she be faire, but some vile toongs will blot ?
But you are faire (aye me) so wondrous faire,
So yong, so gentle, and so debonaire,
As Greece will thinke, if thus you liue alone,
Some one or other keepes you as his owne.
Then Hero hate me not, nor from me flie,
To follow swiftly blasting infamie.
Perhaps, thy sacred Priesthood makes thee loath,
Tell me, to whom mad'st thou that heedlesse oath ?
To Venus, answered shee, and as shee spake,
Foorth from those two tralucent cesternes brake
A streame of liquid pearle, which downe her face
Made milk-white paths, whereon the gods might trace
To Joues high court. Hee thus replide: The rites
In which Loues beauteous Empresse most delites,
Are banquets, Dorick musicke, midnight-reuell,
Plaies, maskes, and all that sterne age counteth euill.
Thee as a holy Idiot doth she scorne,
For thou in vowing chastitie, hast sworne
To rob her name and honour, and thereby
Commit'st a sinne far worse than periurie,
Euen sacrilege against her Deitie,
Through regular and formall puritie.
To expiat which sinne, kisse and shake hands,
Such sacrifice as this, Venus demands.
Thereat she smilde, and did denie him so,
As put thereby, yet might he hope for mo.
Which makes him quickly re-enforce his speech,
And her in humble maner thus beseech.
Though neither gods nor men may thee deserue,
Yet for her sake whom you haue vow'd to serue,
Abandon fruitlesse cold Virginitie,
The gentle queene of Loues sole enemie.
Then shall you most resemble Venus Nun,
When Venus sweet rites are perform'd and dun,
Flint-brested Pallas ioyes in single life,
But Pallas and your mistresse are at strife.
Loue Hero then, and be not tyrannous,
But heale the heart that thou hast wounded thus,
Nor staine thy youthfull yeares with auarice,
Faire fooles delight to be accounted nice.
The richest corne dies, if it be not reapt,
Beautie alone is lost, too warily kept.
These arguments he vs'd, and many more,
Wherewith she yeelded, that was woone before.
Heroes lookes yeelded, but her words made warre,
Women are woon when they begin to iarre.
Thus hauing swallow'd Cupids golden hooke,
The more she striu'd, the deeper was she strooke.
Yet euilly faining anger, stroue she still,
And would be thought to graunt against her will.
So hauing paus'd a while, at last shee said:
Who taught thee Rhetoricke to deceiue a maid?
Aye me, such words as these should I abhor,
And yet I like them for the Orator.
With that Leander stoopt, to haue imbrac'd her,
But from his spreading armes away she cast her,
And thus bespake him; Gentle youth forbeare
To touch the sacred garments which I weare.
Vpon a rocke, and vnderneath a hill,
Far from the towne (where all is whist and still,
Saue that the sea playing on yellow sand,
Sends foorth a ratling murmure to the land,
Whose sound allures the golden Morpheus
In silence of the night to visite vs)
My turret stands, and there God knowes I play
With Venus swannes and sparrowes all the day.