Sonnet 40 by William Shakespeare

Take all my loves, my love, yea, take them all:
What hast thou then more than thou hadst before?
No love, my love, that thou mayst true love call—
All mine was thine before thou hadst this more.
Then if for my love thou my love receivest,
I cannot blame thee for my love thou usest;
But yet be blamed if thou this self deceivest
By wilful taste of what thyself refusest.
I do forgive thy robb’ry, gentle thief,
Although thou steal thee all my poverty;
And yet love knows it is a greater grief
To bear love’s wrong than hate’s known injury.
Lascivious grace, in whom all ill well shows,
Kill me with spites, yet we must not be foes.

William Shakespeare

About Russell Boyle

Russell Boyle is a mathematics teacher, writer, and poet. His poetry anthologies are titled The Beginning, Footprints and Loneliness. Russell is the author of the Year 7 to 8 Mathematics Short-Answer Tasks, the Year 7 to 10 Mathematics Multiple-Choice Tasks, the Year 9 to 10 Extended-Response Tasks, the solutions to the Year 12 VCAA Mathematics Exams and the Web-Programming For Beginners series of courses. Sample poems and questions may be downloaded from
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6 Responses to Sonnet 40 by William Shakespeare

  1. Pingback: Sonnet 42 by William Shakespeare |

  2. Aquileana says:

    Youa re welcome Russell…
    I am adding the tweet linking to your post here… Cheers and good weekend. Aquileana 😉

  3. Aquileana says:

    Excellent sonnet..

    This is one of Shakespeare´s most desolate sonnets; The poet feels betrayed as his beloved Fair youth has stolen his mistress. This sonnet try to come to terms with the reality of the deception and loss.

    “I do forgive thy robbery, gentle thief/ Although thou steal thee all my poverty:/ And yet, love knows it is a greater grief”…

    Many thanks for sharing, Russell. Great choice, Cheers;

    Aquileana 🙂

  4. cindy knoke says:

    This one is new to me. Wonderful of course. Happy weekend~

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