An Epitaph on the Admirable Dramatic Poet W Shakespeare

What needs my Shakespeare for his honored bones

The labor of an age in piled stones?

Or that his hallowed reliques should be hid

Under a star-ypointing pyramid?

Dear son of Memory, great heir of Fame,

What need'st thou such weak witness of thy name?

Thou in our wonder and astonishment

Hast built thy self a livelong monument.

For whilst, to th' shame of slow-endeavoring art,

Thy easy numbers flow, and that each heart

Hath from the leaves of thy unvalued book

Those Delphic lines with deep impression took,

Then thou, our fancy of itself bereaving,

Dost make us marble with too much conceiving,

And so sepulchred in such pomp dost lie

That kings for such a tomb would wish to die.

John Milton

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