Shakespeare Sonnet 70 (Original Text)
That thou art blamed shall not be thy defect,For slander’s mark was ever yet the fair;The ornament of beauty is suspéct,A crow that flies in heaven’s sweetest air.So thou be good, slander doth but approveThy worth the greater, being wooed of time;For canker vice the sweetest buds doth love,And thou present’st a pure unstainèd prime.Thou hast passed by the ambush of young days,Either not assailed, or victor being charged;Yet this thy praise cannot be so thy praise,To tie up envy evermore enlarged.If some suspéct of ill masked not thy show,Then thou alone kingdoms of hearts shouldst owe.–WIKI
Shakespeare Sonnet 70 Modern Text (Translation)
Shakespeare Sonnet 70 Analysis
Shakespeare reassures the youth that although people speak falsely against him, “That thou art blamed” it won’t make him defective “shall not be thy defect,” as people who slander “For slander’s mark” are always targeting beautiful people. “Ever yet the fair” Beautiful people are always a subject of suspicion “The ornament of beauty is suspect, “like a dark crow that flies through the air of heaven “A crow that flies in heaven’s sweetest air”
He says as long as the youth is good,” So thou be good” he becomes a target of temptation “slander doth but approve” and slander increases his worth “Thy worth the greater” wooing him even more. “ being wooed of time;” Because vice like canker or fungus “ For canker vice loves sweet fruits and buds “:sweetest buds doth love” and in the same way the youth presents and even more target because is unblemished in his prime “And thou present’st a pure unstainèd prime”
The youth has managed to remain free of the traps “Thou hast passed by” that ambush young men “ambush of young days, “because either he wasn’t tempted “Either not assailed,” or he resisted temptation, “victor being charged;” but the praise he heaps on the youth won’t increase his ego “Yet this thy praise cannot be so thy praise” as much as it makes envious people gossip “To tie up envy evermore enlarged”.
And if the youth’s beauty wasn’t masked by such bad elements, “If some suspéct of ill masked not thy show, “he may be the most beautiful person in the world “Then thou alone kingdoms of hearts shouldst”