Epitaph on Elizabeth, L.H.
by Ben Jonson

Wouldst thou hear what man can say
    In a little? Reader, stay.
Underneath this stone doth lie
    As much beauty as could die ;
Which in life did harbor give
    To more virtue than doth live.
If at all she had a fault,
    Leave it buried in this vault.
One name was Elizabeth,
    Th' other let it sleep with death ;
Fitter, where it died to tell,
    Than that it lived at all. Farewell.

statue of a girl
Statue of a child holding a bird.
Vatican Galleries. ©1999 Anniina Jokinen.

Poetry of the English Renaissance 1509-1660.
J. William Hebel and Hoyt H. Hudson, eds.
New York: F. S. Crofts & Co., 1941. 499.

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Copyright © 1996-1999 Anniina Jokinen. All Rights Reserved. Violators will be prosecuted.
Created by Anniina Jokinen on September 4, 1999.