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But both his woords and tyme the prince hath spent in vayne
So rooted was the inward hate, he loft his buyfy payne,
When friendly fage advise ne gentyll woords avayle,

By thondring threats and princely powre their courage gan quayle;

In hope that when he had the wasting flame supprest,

he

In time he fhould quyte quench the spark that boornd within their breft.

Now whylft these kyndreds do remayne in this eftate,

And eche with outward frendly fhew doth hyde his inward hate,
One Romeus, who was of race a Mountague,

Upon whofe tender chyn as yet no manlyke beard there grewe,
Whofe beauty and whofe fhape fo farre the reft dyd stayne,
That from the cheef of Veron youth he greatest fame dyd gayne,
Hath found a mayde fo fayre (he founde fo foule his happe)
Whofe beauty, fhape, and comely grace, dyd fo his heart entrappe,
That from his own affayres his thought he did remove;
Onely he fought to honor her, to ferve her and to love.
To her he writeth oft, oft meffengers are fent,

At length, in hope of better fpede, himfelfe the lover went ;
Prefent to pleade for grace, which abfent was not founde,
And to difcover to her eye his new receaved wounde.
But the that from her youth was foftred evermore

With vertue's foode, and taught in fchole of wisdome's skilfull lore,

By aunfwere did cutte off thaffections of his love,

That he no more occafion had fo vayne a fute to move :

So fterne fhe was of chere, (for all the payne he tooke)

That in reward of toyle, he would not geve a frendly looke;
And yet how much the did with conftant mind retyre,

So much the more his fervent minde was prickt fourth by defyre..
But when he, many monthes hopelese of his recure,
Had ferved her, who forced not what paynes he did endure,
At length he thought to leave Verona, and to prove

If chaunge of place might chaunge away his ill-bestowed love;
And fpeaking to himselfe, thus gan he make his mone :
"What booteth me to love and ferve a fell unthankfull one,
Sith that my humble fure, and labour fowde in vayne,

Can reape none other fruite at all but fcorn and proud disdayne ?
What way the feekes to goe, the fame I feeke to rume,

But fhe the path wherein I treade with ipedy flight doth fhunne.
I cannot live except that nere to her I be;

She is ay best content when fhe is farthest of from me.
Wherefore henceforth I will farre from her take my flight;
Perhaps, mine eye once banished by abfence from her fight,
This fyre of mine, that by her pleasant eyne is fed,
Shall little and little weare away, and quite at lait be ded."

But

But whileft he did decree this purpose still to kepe,
A contrary repugnant thought fanke in his breft fo depe,
That douteful is he now which of the twayne is best.
In fyghs, in teares, in plainte, in care, in forow and unrest,
He mones the daye, he wakes the long and werey night;

So depe hath love, with pearcing hand, ygrav'd her bewty bright
Within his breft, and hath fo maftred quyte his hart,

That he of force muft yelde as thrall ;-no way is left to ftart.
He cannot ftay his fteppe, but forth ftyll must he ronne.

He languifheth and melts awaye, as fnowe agaynst the sonne.
His kyndred and alyes do wonder what he ayles,

And eche of them in frendly wyfe his heavy hap bewayles.
But one among the rest, the truftieft of his feeres,

Farre more than he with counsel fild, and ryper of his yeeres,
Gan fharply him rebuke; fuch love to him he bare,
That he was fellow of his smart, and partner of his care.

What meanft thou Romeus, quoth he, what doting rage
Doth make thee thus confume away the best part of thine age,
In feeking her that fcornes, and hydes her from thy fight,
Not forfing all thy great expence, ne yet thy honor bright,
Thy teares, thy wretched lyfe, ne thine unfpotted truth,
Which are of force, I weene, to move the hardest hart to ruthe?
Now, for our friendship's fake, and for thy health, I pray
That thou hencefoorth become thine owne;-O giveno more away -
Unto a thankles wight thy pretious free estate :

In that that thou loveft such a one thou feemft thyfelf to hate.
For the doth love els where, and then thy time is lorne;

Orels (what booteth thee to fue?) Love's court fhe hath forfworne.
Both yong thou art of yeres, and high in Fortune's grace:
What man is better fhapd than thou? who hath a sweeter face
By painful ftudie's meane great learning haft thou wonne,
Thy parents have none other heyre, thou art theyr onely fonne,
What greater greefe, trowft thou, what woeful dedly fmart,
Should fo be able to diftraine thy feely father's hart,
As in his age to fee thee plonged deepe in vice,
When greatest hope he hath to heare thy vertue's fame arife?
What fall thy kinfmen think, thou cause of all their ruthe?
Thy dedly foes doe laugh to fkorne thy yll-employed youth.
Wherefore my counfell is, that thou henceforth beginne
To knowe and flye the errour which to long thou livedst in.
Remove the veale of love that kepes thine eyes fo blynde,
That thou ne canft the ready path of thy forefathers fynde.
But if unto thy will fo much in thrall thou art,

Yet in fome other place bestowe thy witles wandring hart.
Choose out fome woorthy dame, her honor thou, and serve,
Who will give eare to thy complaint, and pitty ere thou flerve,
But fow no more thy paynes in fuch a barraine foyle

As yelds in harvest time no crop, in recompence of toyle,

Ere long the townish dames together will resort,
Some one of beauty, favour, fhape, and of fo lovely porte,
With fo fast fixed eye perhaps thou mayft beholde,

That thou shalt quite forget thy love and paffions paft of olde."
The yong man's liftning eare receiv'd the holfome founde,
And reafon's truth y-planted fo, within his head had grounde;
That now with healthy cool y-tempred is the heate,

And piece meale weares away the greefe that erst his heart did
freate.

To his approved frend a folemne othe he plight,

At every feaft y-kept by day, and banquet made by night,
At pardons in the churche, at games in open ftreate,

And every where he would refort where ladies wont to mete;
Eke fhould his favage heart like all indifferently,

For he would vew and judge them all with unallured eye.
How happy had he been, had he not been forfworne!
But twice as happy had he beene, had he been never borne.
For ere the moone could thrife her wasted hornes renew,

False Fortune caft for him, poore wretch, a mischiefe newe to brewe.

The wery winter nightes restore the Christmas games,

And now the fefon doth invite to banquet townish dames.
And fyrft in Capel's houfe, the chiefe of all the kyn
Sparth for no coft, the wonted ufe of banquets to begin.
No lady fayre or fowle was in Verona towne,
No knight or gentleman of high or lowe renowne,
But Capilet himselfe hath byd unto his feast,

Or, by his name in paper fent, appointed as a geast.
Yong damfels thither flocke, or bachelers a rowte,

Not fo much for the banquets fake, as bewties to ferche out.
But not a Montagew would enter at his gate,

(For, as you heard, the Capilets and they were at debate)
Save Romeus, and he in mafke, with hydden face,

The fupper done, with other five did prease into the place.
When they had mafkd a while with dames in courtly wife,
All did unmaske; the reft did fhew them to theyr ladies eyes;
But bashfull Romeus with fhamefast face forfooke

The open preafe, and him withdrew into the chamber's nooke.
But brighter than the funne the waxen torches fhone,
That, maugre what he could, he was efpyd of every one,
But of the women cheefe, theyr gafing eyes that threwe,
To woonder at his fightly shape, and bewtie's spotles hewe;
With which the heavens him had and nature fo bedect,
That ladies, thought the fayreft dames, were fowle in his refpect
And in theyr head befyde an other woonder rofe,

How he durit put himfelfe in throng among fo many foes:
Of courage ftoute they thought his cumming to procede.
And women love an kardy hart, as I in ftories rede.

The

The Capilets difdayne the prefence of thyer foe,

Yet they fuppreffe theyr ftyred yre; the caufe I doe not knowe: Perhaps toffend theyr geites the courteous knights are loth; Perhaps they stay from tharp revenge, dreadyng the prince's wroth;

Perhaps for that they fhamd to exercise theyr rage

Within their houfe, gainst one alone, and him of tender age.
They use no taunting talke, ne harme him by theyr deede,
They neyther fay, what makft thou here? ne yet they fay, God
fpeede.

So that he freely might the ladies view at ease,

And they alfo behelding him their chaunge of fanfies please ;
Which Nature had hym taught to doe with fuch a grace,
That there was none but joyed at his being there in place.
With upright beame he wayd the beauty of eche dame,
And judgd who bet, and who next her, was wrought in na-

ture's frame.

At length he faw a mayd, right fayre, of perfect fhape,
(Which Thefeus or Paris would have chofen to their rape)
Whom crft he never fawe; of all the pleafde him most;
Within himfelfe he fayd to her, thou justly may'st thee boste
Of perfet hape's renowne and beautic's founding prayfe,
Whofe like ne hath, ne fhall be feene, ne liveth in our dayes.
And whilft he fixd on her his partiall perced eye,
His former love, for which of late he ready was to dye,
Is nowe as quite forgotte as it had never been :

The proverbe faith, unminded oft are they that are unfeene.
And as out of a planke a nayle a nayle doth drive,

So novel love out of the minde the auncient love doth rive.

This fodain kindled tyre in time is wox fo great,

That only death and both theyr blouds might quench the fiery

heate.

When Romeus faw himfelfe in this new tempeft toft,

Where both was hope of pleasant port, and daunger to be lost,

He doubtefull fkafely knew what countenance to keepe;

In Lethie's floud his wonted flames were quenchd and drenched

deepe.

Yea he forgets himfelfe, ne is the wretch fo bolde

To ask her name that without force hath him in bondage folde; Ne how tunloofe his bondes doth the poore foole devife,

But onely fecketh by her fight to feede his houngry eyes;

Through them he fwalloweth downe Love's fweete empoyfonde

baite:

How furely are the wareles wrapt by thofe that lye in wayte;
So is the poyfon fpred throughout his bones and vaines,
That in a while (alas the while) it hafteth deadly paines.
Whilft Juliet, for fo this gentle damfell hight,

From fyde to fyde on every one dyd caft about her fight,

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At last her floting eyes were anchored faft on him,

Who for her fake dyd banish health and freedome from eche limme.

He in her fight did feeme to paffe the reft, as farre

As Phoebus' fhining beames do paffe the brightnes of a starre.
In wayte laye warlike Love with golden bowe and shaft,
And to his eare with steady hand the bowstring up he raft:
Till now the had efcapde his fharpe inflaming darte,
Till now he lifted not affaulte her yong and tender hart.
His whetted arrow loofde, fo touchd her to the quicke
That through the eye it ftrake the hart, and there the hedde did
fticke.

It booted not to strive. For why ?-fhe wanted ftrength;
The weaker aye unto the ftrong, of force, must yeld at length.
The pomps now of the feast her heart gyns to difpyfe:

And onely joyeth when her eyen meete with her lover's eyes.
When theyr new fmitten heartes had fed on loving gleames,
Whilft, paffing too and fro theyr eyes, y-mingled were thyerbeames,
Eche of thefe lovers gan by other's lookes to knowe,

That friendship in theyr brest had roote, and both would have it

grow.

When thus in both theyr harts had Cupide made his breache, And eche of them had fought the meane to end the warre by

fpeech,

Dame Fortune did affent, theyr purpose to advaunce.

With torche in hand a comely knight did fetch her foorth to daunce;

She quit herfelfe fo well and with fo trim a grace

That the the chiefe prayfe wan that night from all Verona race:
The whilft our Romeus a place had warely wonne,

Nye to the feate where she must fit, the daunce once beyng donne.
Fayre Juliet tourned to her chayre with pleasant cheere,
And glad fhe was her Romeus approched was fo neere,
At thone fyde of her chayre her lover Romeo,
And on the other fyde there fat one cald Mercutio ;
A courtier that eche where was highly had in price,
For he was coorteous of his fpeeche, and pleafant of devife.
Even as a lyon would emong the lambes be bolde,
Such was emong the bafhfull maydes Mercutio to beholde.
With friendly gripe he ceasd fayre Juliet's fnowith hand :
A gyft he had, that nature gave him in his fwathing band,
That frofen mountayne yfe was never halfe fo cold,

As were his handes, though nere fo neer the fire he did them

hold.

As foon as had the knight the virgin's right hand raught, Within his trembling hand her left hath loving Romeus caught, For he wist well himfelfe for her abode most payne,

And well he wift she lovd him beft, unless the lift to fayne.

Then

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