1 IF rightly tuneful bards decide,
2 If it be six'd in love's decrees,
3 That beauty ought not to be tried
4 But by its native power to please,
5 Then tell me, youths and lovers, tell,
6 What fair can Amoret excell?
7 Behold that bright unsullied smile,
8 And wisdom speaking in her mien:
9 Yet (she so artless all the while,
10 So little studious to be seen)
11 We nought but instant gladness know,
12 Nor think to whom the gift we owe.
13 But neither music, nor the powers
14 Of youth and mirth and frolick cheer,
15 Add half that sunshine to the hours,
16 Or make life's prospect half so clear,
17 As memory brings it to the eye
18 From scenes where Amoret was by.
19 Yet nor a satirist could there
20 Or fault or indiscretion find;
21 Nor any prouder sage declare
22 One virtue, pictur'd in his mind,
23 Whose form with lovelier colours glows
24 Than Amoret's demeanor shows.
25 This sure is beauty's happiest part:
26 This gives the most unbounded sway:
27 This shall inchant the subject heart
28 When rose and lily fade away;
29 And She be still, in spite of time,
30 Sweet Amoret in all her prime.
About this text
Title (in Source Edition): ODE.
Author: Mark Akenside
Themes: virtue; vice; beauty
References: DMI 27809
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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the ECCO-TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 3.0.
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