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Brittle Beauty

Henry Howard 1517 – 1547

Brittle beauty that nature made so frail,
Whereof the gift is small, and short the season,
Flowering today, tomorrow apt to fail,
Tickle
treasure, abhorred of reason, [fragile]
Dangerous to deal with, vain, of none avail,
Costly in keeping, passed not worth two peason
, [peas]
Slipper
in sliding as is an eel's tail, [slippery]
Jewel of jeopardy that peril doth assail,
False and untrue, enticed oft to treason,
Enemy to youth: that most may I bewail.
Ah, bitter sweet: infecting as the poison,
Thou farest as fruit that with the frost is taken:
Today ready ripe, tomorrow all to-shaken
. [broken]

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

30 sec read
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Henry Howard

Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, KG, (courtesy title), was an English nobleman, politician and poet. He was one of the founders of English Renaissance poetry and the last known execution by King Henry VIII. He was a first cousin of both Queen Anne Boleyn and Queen Catherine Howard, second and fifth wives of King Henry VIII. His name is usually associated in literature with that of Wyatt, who was the older poet of the two. He was the son of Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey and when his father became Duke of Norfolk (1524) the son adopted the courtesy title of Earl of Surrey. Owing largely to the powerful position of his father, Surrey took a prominent part in the Court life of the time, and served as a soldier both in France and Scotland. He was a man of reckless temper, which involved him in many quarrels, and finally brought upon him the wrath of the aging and embittered Henry VIII. He was arrested, tried for treason and beheaded on Tower Hill. more…

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    "Brittle Beauty" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 23 Apr. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/17386/brittle-beauty>.

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