Sir Philip Sidney, Not at first sight (1591)

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Not at first sight, nor with a dribbling shot
Love gave the wound, which while I breathe will bleed;
But known worth did in mine of time proceed,
Till by degrees it had full conquest got    
    I saw and liked, I liked but loved not;
I lov'd, but straight did not what Love decreed.
At length to love's decrees I, forc'd, agreed,
Yet with repining at so partial lot.
    Now even that footstep of lost liberty
Is gone, and now like slave-born Muscovite
I call it praise to suffer tyranny;
    And now employ the remnant of my wit
To make myself believe that all is well,
While with a feeling skill I paint my hell.

First Edition

Sir Philip Sidney. "Loving in Truth." Astrophel and Stella. London: Thomas Newman, 1591.

Critical Edition

Further Reading

External Links