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An Hymne In Honour Of Beautie
by [?]

Ah! whither, Love! wilt thou now carry mee?
What wontlesse fury dost thou now inspire
Into my feeble breast, too full of thee?
Whylest seeking to aslake thy raging fyre,
Thou in me kindlest much more great desyre,
And up aloft above my strength doth rayse
The wondrous matter of my fire to praise.

That as I earst in praise of thine owne name,
So now in honour of thy mother deare
An honourable hymne I eke should frame,
And, with the brightnesse of her beautie cleare,
The ravisht hearts of gazefull men might reare
To admiration of that heavenly light,
From whence proceeds such soule-enchanting might.

Therto do thou, great Goddesse! Queene of Beauty,
Mother of Love and of all worlds delight,
Without whose soverayne grace and kindly dewty
Nothing on earth seems fayre to fleshly sight,
Doe thou vouchsafe with thy love-kindling light
T’illuminate my dim and dulled eyne,
And beautifie this sacred hymne of thyne:

That both to thee, to whom I meane it most,
And eke to her whose faire immortall beame
Hath darted fyre into my feeble ghost,
That now it wasted is with woes extreame,
It may so please, that she at length will streame
Some deaw of grace into my withered hart,
After long sorrow and consuming smart.

To make al things such as we now behold,
It seems that he before his eyes had plast
A goodly paterne, to whose perfect mould
He fashiond them as comely as he could,
That now so faire and seemely they appeare
As nought may be amended any wheare.

That wondrous paterne, wheresoere it bee,
Whether in earth layd up in secret store,
Or else in heaven, that no man may it see
With sinfull eyes, for feare it do deflore,
Is perfect Beautie, which all men adore;
Whose face and feature doth so much excell
All mortal sence, that none the same may tell.

Thereof as every earthly thing partakes
Or more or lesse, by influence divine,
So it more faire accordingly it makes,
And the grosse matter of this earthly myne
Which closeth it thereafter doth refyne,
Doing away the drosse which dims the light
Of that faire beame which therein is empight*.
[* Empight, placed.]

For, through infusion of celestiall powre,
The duller earth it quickneth with delight,
And life-full spirits privily doth powre
Through all the parts, that to the lookers sight
They seeme to please; that is thy soveraine might,
O Cyprian queene! which, flowing from the beame
Of thy bright starre, thou into them doest streame.

That is the thing which giveth pleasant grace
To all things faire, that kindleth lively fyre;
Light of thy lampe; which, shyning in the face,
Thence to the soule darts amorous desyre,
And robs the harts of those which it admyre;
Therewith thou pointest thy sons poysned arrow,
That wounds the life and wastes the inmost marrow.

How vainely then do ydle wits invent
That Beautie is nought else but mixture made
Of colours faire, and goodly temp’rament
Of pure complexions, that shall quickly fade
And passe away, like to a sommers shade;
Or that it is but comely composition
Of parts well measurd, with meet disposition!

Hath white and red in it such wondrous powre,
That it can pierce through th’eyes unto the hart,
And therein stirre such rage and restlesse stowre*,
As nought but death can stint his dolours smart?
Or can proportion of the outward part
Move such affection in the inward mynd,
That it can rob both sense, and reason blynd?
[* Stowre, commotion.]