If my dear love were but the child of state,
It might for fortune’s bastard be unfathered,
As subject to time’s love or to time’s hate,
Weeds among weeds, or flowers with flowers gathered.
No, it was builded far from accident;
It suffers not in smiling pomp, nor falls
Under the blow of thrallèd discontent,
Whereto the inviting time our fashion calls.
It fears not policy, that heretic
Which works on leases of short-numbered hours,
But all alone stands hugely politic,
That it nor grows with heat nor drowns with showers.
To this I witness call the fools of time,
Which die for goodness who have lived for crime.
Reading of Sonnet 124
The images in the YouTube video are from an original 1609 edition of Shake-speares Sonnets held by the British Library. It is one of only thirteen copies in existence. Images courtesy of the Octavo Corporation.
Text from Original 1609 Quarto
Transcription courtesy of University of Virginia Library:
Yf my deare loue were but the childe of state,
It might for fortunes basterd be vnfathered,
As subiect to times loue, or to times hate,
Weeds among weeds, or flowers with flowers gatherd.
No it was buylded far from accident,
It suffers not in smilinge pomp, nor falls
Vnder the blow of thralled discontent,
Whereto th’inuiting time our fashion calls:
It feares not policy that Heriticke,
Which workes on leases of short numbred howers,
But all alone stands hugely pollitick,
*That it nor growes with heat, nor drownes with showres.
To this I witnes call the foles of time,
Which die for goodnes, who haue liu’d for crime.
* indicates fully justified line, compositor may have adjusted spelling to fit the line.