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Mistress Fitton

SONNET NO. 40

 


     Take all my loves, my love, yea take them all,
     What hast thou  then more than thou hadst  before,
     No love, my love, that thou mayst true love call,
     All mine was thine, before thou hadst this more:
     Then if for my love, thou my love  receivest,
     I cannot blame  thee, for my love thou usest,
     But yet be blamed, if thou thy self deceivest,
     By wilful taste, of what thy self refusest,
     I do forgive thy robbery, gentle thief,
     Although thou  steal thee all my poverty:
     And yet love knows it is a greater grief
     To bear loves  wrong than hates  known injury
     Lascivious grace, in whom all ill will shows,
     Kill me with spites, yet we must not be foes.

 

     

 


  Note the repetition of certain words, we find-my loves, my
love, my love, my love, my love, love, love, love, love, love, love,thou, thou, thou, thou, thou, thou, thou.
  Here Bacon tells Mistress Fitton that she has all his love of
every description and that she has always had it. He cannot
blame her for using his love but he blames her if she deceives
herself by wilfully (intentionally) tasting (enjoying) that which
she had refused (declined) to accept. He forgives her for being
a thief and stealing from him his poverty (necessity). That it
is harder to bear loves wrong than the injuries of hate. That
lascivious (wanton) grace (favour) which shows ill kills him with spites (grudges) yet they must not be enemies.

 

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