The spotless maid is like the blooming rose
Which on its native stem unsullied grows;
Where fencing walls the garden-space surround,
Nor swains, nor browsing cattle tread the ground.
But if some hand the tender stalk invades,
Lost is its beauty, and its colour fades:
No more the care of heaven, or garden's boast,
And all its praise with youths and maidens lost.
Book I, line 300
Love what we see can from our sight remove,
And things invisible are seen by Love.
Book I, line 396
Ah! why so rare does cruel Love inspire
Two tender bosoms with a mutual fire?
Say, whence, perfidious, dost thou pleasure find
To sow dissension in the human mind?
Book II, line 1
What has that wretched damsel left to boast,
What good on earth, whose virtuous praise is lost?
Book VIII, line 285
So from a water clear, the trembling light
Of Phoebus, or the silver queen of night,
Along the spacious rooms with splendour plays,
Now high, now low, and shifts a thousand ways.
Book VIII, line 490
The youth, who pants to gain the amorous prize,
Forgets that Heaven with all-discerning eyes
Surveys the secret heart; and when desire
Has, in possession, quenched its short-lived fire,
The devious winds aside each promise bear,
And scatter all his solemn vows in air!
Book X, line 24
Reflect, ye gentle dames, that much they know,
Who gain experience from another's woe.
Book X, line 32
What more our folly shows,
Than while we others seek, ourselves to lose?
Book XXIV, line 7
In blaming others, fools their folly show,
And most attempt to speak when least they know.
Book XXVIII, line 7
For oft the grace
Of costly vest improves a beauteous face.
Book XXVIII, line 82
Of all the sex this certain truth is known,
No woman yet was ever content with one.
Book XXVIII, line 370
To others never do
That which yourselves would wish undone to you.
Book XXVIII, line 591
Behold the state of man's unstable mind,
Still prone to change with every changing wind!
All our resolves are weak, but weakest prove
Where sprung from sense of disappointed love.
Book XXIX, line 1
Never let us utter what we never can know,
And chiefly when it works another's woe.
Book XXXII, line 753
But such their power who rule with tyrant sway,
Whom most they loath the people most obey.
Book XXXVII, line 774
When Fame, O monarch! good or evil tells,
Evil or good beyond the truth she swells.
Book XXXVIII, line 327
And Neptune's white herds low above the wave.
Book XLI, line 66
These friendly words awhile consoled the fair;
For grief imparted oft alleviates care.
Book XLII, line 202
Not beauty, wealth, or lineage e'er could raise
A woman's name (he said) to height of praise,
If not in action chaste.
Book XLIII, line 628
When highest placed on giddy Fortune's wheel,
Unhappy man must soon expect to feel
A sad reverse, and in the changing round
With rapid whirl as sudden touch the ground.