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VENUS AND ADONIS.

Vilia miretur vulgus, mihi Aavus Apollo Poculo Castalia plena ministret aqua. OVID.

B

TO THE

RIGHT HONOURABLE HENRY WRIOTHESLY,

EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON, AND BARON OF TITCHFIELD.

my

RIGHT HONOURABLE, I KNOW not how I shall offend in dedicating my unpolished lines to your Lordship, nor how the world will censure me for choosing so strong a prop to support so weak a burthen : only if your honour seem but pleased, I account myself highly praised, and vow to take advantage of all idle hours, till I have honoured you with some graver labour. But if the first heir of invention prove deformed, I shall be sorry

it had so noble a godfather, and never after ear1 so barren a land, for fear it yield me still so bad a harvest. I leave it to your honourable survey, and your

heart's content; which I wish may always answer your own wish, and the world's hopeful expectation. Your Honour's in all duty,

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE.

honour to your

' curj 1. e. plough.

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