Sonnet LXX

That thou art blamed shall not be thy defect,
    For slander’s mark was ever yet the fair;
    The ornament of beauty is suspect,
    A crow that flies in heaven’s sweetest air.
    So thou be good, slander doth but approve
    Thy worth the greater, being woo’d of time;
    For canker vice the sweetest buds doth love,
    And thou present’st a pure unstained prime.
    Thou hast pass’d by the ambush of young days,
    Either not assail’d or victor being charged;
    Yet this thy praise cannot be so thy praise,
    To tie up envy evermore enlarged:
    If some suspect of ill mask’d not thy show,
    Then thou alone kingdoms of hearts shouldst owe.
Other works by William Shakespeare ...