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Works of Sir Thomas Wyatt

Detail. Garden of Love from the Roman de la Rose



B LAME not my Lute ! for he must sound
   Of this or that as liketh me ;
   For lack of wit the Lute is bound
To give such tunes as pleaseth me ;
Though my songs be somewhat strange,
And speak such words as touch thy change,
                    Blame not my Lute !
My Lute ! alas ! doth not offend,
Though that perforce he must agree
To sound such tunes as I intend,
To sing to them that heareth me ;
Then though my songs be somewhat plain,
And toucheth some that use to feign,
                    Blame not my Lute !
My Lute and strings may not deny
But as I strike they must obey ;
Break not them then so wrongfully,
But wreak thyself some other way ;
And though the songs which I indite
Do quit thy change with rightful spite,
                    Blame not my Lute !
Spite asketh spite, and changing change,
And falsèd faith must needs be known ;
The fault so great, the case so strange ;
Of right it must abroad be blown :
Then since that by thine own desart
My songs do tell how true thou art,
                    Blame not my Lute !
Blame but thyself that hast misdone,
And well deservèd to have blame ;
Change thou thy way, so evil begone,
And then my Lute shall sound that same ;
But if 'till then my fingers play,
By thy desert their wonted way,
                    Blame not my Lute !
Farewell !  unknown ; for though thou break
My strings in spite with great disdain,
Yet have I found out for thy sake,
Strings for to string my Lute again :
And if, perchance, this sely rhyme
Do make thee blush, at any time,
                    Blame not my Lute !

Yeowell, James, Ed. The Poetical Works of Sir Thomas Wyatt.
London: George Bell and Sons, 1904. 96-98.

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Created by Anniina Jokinen on August 26, 2000. Last updated December 23, 2018.


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Images of London:
London in the time of Henry VII. MS. Roy. 16 F. ii.
London, 1510, the earliest view in print
Map of England from Saxton's Descriptio Angliae, 1579
Location Map of Elizabethan London
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