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'Tis most true,
That musing meditation most affects
The pensive secrecy of desert cell,
Far from the cheerful haunt of men and herds,
And sits as safe as in a senate-house;
For who would rob a hermit of his weeds,
His few books, or his beads, or maple dish,
Or do his grey hairs any violence?
But Beauty, like the fair Hesperian tree
Laden with blooming gold, hath need the guard
Of dragon-watch with unenchanted eye,
To save her blossoms, and defend her fruit
From the rash hand of bold Incontinence.
You may as well spread out the unsunned heaps
Of misers' treasure by an outlaw's den,
I fear the dread events that dog them both,
Lest some ill-greeting touch attempt the person
Of our unowned sister.
I do not, brother,
Infer, as if I thought my sister's state
And gladly banish squint suspicion.
My sister is not so defenceless left
As you imagine: she has a hidden strength
you remember not.
What hidden strength,
Unless the strength of Heaven, if you mean that?
I mean that too; but yet a hidden strength,
Which, if Heaven gave it, may be termed her own;
'Tis chastity, my brother, chastity:
She that has that is clad in cómplete steel,
And, like a quivered nymph with arrows keen,
Yea there, where very Desolation dwells,
By grots and caverns shagged with horrid shades,
ye believe me yet? or shall I call Antiquity from the old schools of Greece
To testify the arms of chastity?
Hence had the huntress Dian her dread bow,
Fair silver-shafted queen, for ever chaste,