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Contents > Author > William Shakespeare > That thou art blam'd shall not be thy defect, 1564- 1616
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William Shakespeare
That thou art blam'd shall not be thy defect,
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Sonnet 70

That thou art blam'd shall not be thy defect,
For slander's mark was ever yet the fair;
The ornament of beauty is suspect,
A crow that flies in heaven's sweetest air.
So thou be good, slander doth but approve
Thy worth the greater, being woo'd of time;
For canker vice the sweetest buds doth love,
And thou present'st a pure unstained prime.
Thou hast pass'd by the ambush of young days,
Either not assail'd, or victor being charg'd,
Yet this thy praise cannot be so thy praise,
To tie up envy evermore enlarg'd;
If some suspect of ill mask'd not thy show,
Then thou alone kingdoms of hearts shouldst owe.
 

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