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Sonnet XX. [A woman's face with nature's own hand painted,]

by William Shakespeare, 1609

A woman's face with nature's own hand painted,
Hast thou, the master mistress of my passion;
A woman's gentle heart, but not acquainted
With shifting change, as is false women's fashion:
An eye more bright than theirs, less false in rolling,
Gilding the object whereupon it gazeth;
A man in hue all 'hues' in his controlling,
Which steals men's eyes and women's souls amazeth.
And for a woman wert thou first created;
Till Nature, as she wrought thee, fell a-doting,
And by addition me of thee defeated,
By adding one thing to my purpose nothing.
      But since she prick'd thee out for women's pleasure,
      Mine be thy love and thy love's use their treasure.

Published in Shakespeare's Sonnets
Tags: beauty, desire, gender

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