Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
What the Sonnet Is
By Eugene Lee-Hamilton (1845–1907)
 
FOURTEEN small broider’d berries on the hem
  Of Circe’s mantle, each of magic gold;
  Fourteen of lone Calypso’s tears that roll’d
Into the sea, for pearls to come to them;
Fourteen clear signs of omen in the gem        5
  With which Medea human fate foretold;
  Fourteen small drops, which Faustus, growing old,
Craved of the Fiend, to water Life’s dry stem.
 
It is the pure white diamond Dante brought
  To Beatrice; the sapphire Laura wore        10
When Petrarch cut it sparkling out of thought;
  The ruby Shakespeare hew’d from his heart’s core;
The dark deep emerald that Rossetti wrought
  For his own soul, to wear for evermore.
 
 
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