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Beauty, thou wild fantastic ape, Who dost in every country change thy shape; Here black, there brown, here tawny, and there white; Thou flatterer who comply’st with every sight.
Who hast no certain what nor where,
'Tis not a lip or eye we beauty call,
'Tis not a set of features, or complexion,
Young. Hear, ye fair daughters of this happy land, Whose radiant eyes the vanquished world command; Tirtue is beauty: but when charms of mind With elegance of outward form are joined; When youth makes each bright object still more bright, And fortune sets them in the strongest light; "Tis all of heaven that we below may view, And all but adoration is your due.
· Ah me! the blooming pride of May,
And that of beauty are but one;
Both fade at evening, pale and gone.
Beauty! thou pretty plaything! dear deceit,
The grave discredits thee: thy charms expung'd,
Beauty's our grief, but in the ore,
Do not idolatrize; beauty's a flow'r
O how I grudge the grave this heav'nly form!
Marston. Lo! when the buds expand, the leaves are green, Then the first opening of the flower is seen; Then come the humid breath and rosy-smile, That with their sweets the willing sense beguile: But as we look, and love, and taste, and praise, And the fruit grows the charming flower decays; Till all is gathered, and the wintry blast Mourns o'er the place of love and pleasure past. So 'tis with beauty,--such the opening grace, The crown of glory in the youthful face.
Then are the charms unfolded to the sight,
Oh! how refreshing seemed the breathing wind
To her faint limbs! and while her snowy hands From her fair brow her golden hair unbind,
And of her zone unloose the silken bands, More passing bright unveiled her beauty stands;
For faultless was her form as beauty's queen, And every winning grace that love demands,
With mild attempered dignity was seen Play o’er each lovely limb, and deck her angel mien.
The blessings of the skies all went about her;
Who can curiously behold
As rising on its purple wing
So coldly sweet, so deadly fair,
The beautiful is vanished, and returns not.
Coleridge. Oh she has beauty might ensnare A conqueror's soul, and make him tear his crown At random, to be scuffled for by slaves. Otway.
Without the smile, from partial beauty won,
Beauty with a bloodless conquest finds
Beauty, That transitory flower: even while it lasts Palls on the roving sense, when held too near, Or dwelling there too long: by fits it pleases; And smells at distance best; its sweets, familiar By frequent converse, soon grow dull and cloy you.
Jeffery. His love is treacherous only whose love dies With beauty, which is varying every hour, But on chaste hearts uninfluenced by the power Of outward change, there blooms a deathless flower, That breathes on earth the air of paradise.
Wordsworth. O fatal beauty! why art thou bestowed On hapless woman still to make her wretched! Betray'd by thee, how many are undone!
Beauty! my Lord,-'tis the worst part of woman!
To make the cunning artless, tame the rude,
Sheridan Knowles. A thing of beauty is a joy for ever: Its loveliness increaseth, it will never Pass into nothingness, but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing. Therefore, on every morrow are we wreathing A flowery band to bind us to the earth, Spite of despondence, of th' inhuman dearth Of noble actions, of the gloomy days, Of all the unhealthy and o'er-darkened ways Made for our searching: yes, in spite of all, Some shape of beauty moves along the pall, From our dark spirits.