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by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus;
Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits.
Were ’t not affection chains thy tender days
To the sweet glances of thy honored love,
5I rather would entreat thy company
To see the wonders of the world abroad
Than, living dully sluggardized at home,
Wear out thy youth with shapeless idleness.
But since thou lov’st, love still and thrive therein,
10Even as I would when I to love begin.
Stop trying to persuade me, Proteus. Young homebodies have dull minds. If you weren’t so tied to the girl you love, I’d ask you to come with me to see the distant wonders of the world rather than waste your youth living aimlessly as a sluggard at home. But, since you’re in love, love constantly and thrive in your love. I would do the same were I in love.
Wilt thou be gone? Sweet Valentine, adieu!
Think on thy Proteus when thou haply seest
Some rare noteworthy object in thy travel.
Wish me partaker in thy happiness
15When thou dost meet good hap; and in thy danger,
If ever danger do environ thee,
Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers,
For I will be thy beadsman, Valentine.
Are you going now? Goodbye, Valentine, my dear friend! Think of me when you happen to see some rare and noteworthy object in your travels. Wish me happiness, too, when you have good fortune. And if you’re ever in danger, trust that my prayers will protect you, for I will pray for you, Valentine.
And on a love book pray for my success?
20Upon some book I love I’ll pray for thee.
I’ll pray for you on a book I love.
That’s on some shallow story of deep love,
How young Leander crossed the Hellespont.