Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. II. Ben Jonson to Dryden
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Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. II. The Seventeenth Century: Ben Jonson to Dryden
 
Song: ‘Hear, ye ladies that despise’ (from Valentinian)
By John Fletcher (1579–1625)
 
HEAR, ye ladies that despise,
  What the mighty Love has done;
Fear examples and be wise:
  Fair Calisto was a nun;
Leda, sailing on the stream        5
  To deceive the hopes of man,
Love accounting but a dream,
  Doated on a silver swan;
Danaë, in a brazen tower,
Where no love was, loved a shower.        10
 
Hear, ye ladies that are coy,
  What the mighty Love can do;
Fear the fierceness of the boy:
  The chaste moon he made to woo;
Vesta, kindling holy fires,        15
  Circled round about with spies,
Never dreaming loose desires,
  Doting at the altar dies;
Ilion, in a short hour, higher
He can build, and once more fire.        20
 
 
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