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Upon Honour. A Fragment.

Matthew Prior 1664 – 1721

Honour, I say, or honest Fame,
I mean the substance, not the name;
(Not that light heap of tawdry wares,
Ermin, Coronets, and Stars,
Which often is by merit sought,
By gold and flatt'ry oft'ner bought.
The shade, for which Ambition looks,
In Selden's or in Ashmole's books):
But the true glory which proceeds,
Reflected bright from honest deeds,
Which we in our Own breast perceive,
And Kings can neither take nor give.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Matthew Prior

Matthew Prior was an English poet and diplomat. more…

All Matthew Prior poems | Matthew Prior Books

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