Shakespeare's Sonnets: Mine eye hath play'd the painter and hath stell'd

Sonnet 24

3My body is the frame wherein 'tis held,
5For through the painter must you see his skill,
6To find where your true image pictur'd lies,
7Which in my bosom's shop is hanging still,
8That hath his windows glazèd with thine eyes:
10Mine eyes have drawn thy shape, and thine for me
11Are windows to my breast, where-through the sun
12Delights to peep, to gaze therein on thee.
13    Yet eyes this cunning want to grace their art;
14    They draw but what they see, know not the heart.


1] stell'd] depicted, portrayed (OED, "stell," v., 3); steel'd Q ("engraved with steel"). Back to Line
2] table] writing tablet. Back to Line
4] perspective] "art of drawing solid objects on a plane surface so as to give the same impression of relative position, size, or distance, as the actual objects do when viewed from a particular point" (OED, "perspective," n., 3.a). Back to Line
9] good-turns] favours. Back to Line
Publication Notes: 
SHAKE-SPEARES SONNETS (London: G. Eld for T. T. and sold by William Aspley, 1609): c1v-c2r.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: