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A Collection of Emblemes

Ancient and Moderne: Quickened VVith Metricall Illvstrations, both Morall and Divine: And disposed into Lotteries, That Instruction, and Good Counsell, may bee furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation. By George Wither

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Illvstr. L.
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Illvstr. L.

[Lord, what a coyle men keepe, and, with what care]

True Vertue is a Coat of Maile,
'Gainst which, no Weapons can prevaile.

Lord , what a coyle men keepe, and, with what care
Their Pistolls, and, their Swords doe they prepare,
To be in readinessse? and, how they load
Themselves with Irons, when they ride abroad?
How wise and wary too, can they become,
To fortifie their persons up at home,
With lockes, and barres? and such domestick-Armes,
As may secure their bodies, there, from harmes?
However, when all's done, we see, their foes
Breake in, sometimes, and worke their overthrowes.
For, though (about themselves, with Cable-quoiles,
They could inclose a hundred thousand miles)
The gunshot of a slanderous tongue, may smite,
Their Fame quite through it, to the very White.
Yea, more (though, there, from others, they were free)
They wounded, by themselves, to death might be,
Except their Innocence, more guards them, than
The strength of twenty royall Armies, can.
If, therefore, thou thy Spoylers, wilt beguile,
Thou must be armed, like this Crocodile;
Ev'n with such nat'rall Armour (ev'ry day)
As no man can bestowe, or take away:
For, spitefull Malice, at one time or other,
Will pierce all borrowed Armours, put together.
Without, let Patience durifie thy Skin;
Let Innocencie, line thy heart within;
Let constant Fortitude, unite them so,
That, they may breake the force of ev'ry blow:
And, when thou thus art arm'd, if ill thou speed;
Let me sustaine the Mischiefe, in thy steed.