Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
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Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
 
Elizabeth of Bohemia
By Sir Henry Wotton (1568–1639)
 
YOU meaner beauties of the night,
  That poorly satisfy our eyes
More by your number than your light,—
  You common people of the skies,
  What are you when the sun shall rise?        5
 
Ye violets that first appear,
  By your pure purple mantles known,
Like the proud virgins of the year,
  As if the spring were all your own,—
  What are you when the rose is blown?        10
 
Ye curious chanters of the wood,
  That warble forth dame Nature’s lays,
Thinking your voices’ understood
  By your weak accents,—what’s your praise
  When Philomel her voice shall raise?        15
 
So when my mistress shall be seen,
  In form and beauty of her mind,
By virtue first, then choice, a queen,
  Tell me if she was not design’d
  Th’ eclipse and glory of her kind.        20
 
 
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