Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Elizabethan Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Elizabethan Verse.  1907.
 
Be Your Words Made, Good Sir, of Indian Ware
By Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586)
 
BE 1 your words made, good Sir, of Indian ware,
That you allow me them by so small rate?
Or do you cutted Spartans imitate? 2
Or do you mean my tender ears to spare
That to my questions you so total are?        5
When I demand of Phœnix Stella’s state,
You say, forsooth, you left her well of late:
O God, think you that satisfies my care?
I would know whether she did sit or walk;
How clothed; how waited on; sighed she or smiled;        10
Whereof, with whom, how often did she talk;
With what pastime time’s journey she beguiled;
If her lips deigned to sweeten my poor name:
Say all; and, all well said, still say the same.
 
Note 1. Be your words made, goad Sir, of Indian ware.  Sonnet cxii. in Astrophel and Stella, 1591. [back]
Note 2. Or do you cutted Spartans imitate: Dr. Grosart retains the reading of the 1605 folio, curted. “The reference in any case,” says Mr. Pollard, “is to the churlish brevity of the Spartans, and the form of curted is but little less difficult to explain than cutted.” Middleton uses the word in the sense of cross: “She’s grown so cutted there’s no speaking to her.” Women Beware Women, act iii. sc. 1. [back]
 
 
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