The Sonnets by William Shakespeare

Sonnet 20

read by Simon Russell Beale

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;

5An 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,

10Till 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 pricked thee out for women’s pleasure,

Mine be thy love, and thy love’s use their treasure.

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