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VENUS AND ADONIS.

Vilia miretur vulgus, mihi Alavus Apollo Poculo Castalia plena ministret aqua. OviD.

B

TO THE

RIGHT HONOURABLE HENRY WRIOTHESLY,

EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON, AND BARON OF TITCHFIELD.

RIGHT HONOURABLE, I know not 'how I shall offend in dedicating my unpolished lines to your Lordship, nor how the world will censure me for choosing so strong a prop to support so weak a burthen: only if your honour seem but pleased, I account myself highly praised, and vow to take advantage of all idle hours, till I have honoured you with some graver labour. But if the first heir of my invention prove deformed, I shall be sorry it had so noble a godfather, and never after eari so barren a land, for fear it yield me still so bad a harvest. I leave it to your honourable survey, and

your honour to your heart's content; which I wish may always answer your own wish, and the world's hopeful expectation. Your Honour's in all duty,

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE.

ear] 1. e. plough.

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