The Palace of the Fairy Queen


The stately palace in which the Queen2 dwells,
Its fabric’s built all3 of hodmandod shells.
The hangings, of a rainbow made4 that’s thin,
Show5 wondrous fine when one first enters6 in.
The chambers, made7 of amber that is8 clear,                        5
Do give a fine9 sweet smell, if fire be near.
Her bed, a cherry-stone, is carved10 throughout,
And with a butterfly’s wing hung about;
Her sheets are made of a dove’s eyes’ skin,11
Her pillow a violet bud laid therein.12                                    10
The doors13 are cut all of14 transparent glass,
Where the queen may be seen when15 she doth pass;
These16 doors are locked up17 fast with silver pins,
And when she goes to sleep,18 our day begins.
Her time in pleasure she doth pass19 away,                           15
And will20 do so until the world’s last day.

  1. The Palace of the Fairy Queen] Her descending downe. 1653
  2. stately palace in which the Queen] Palace of the Queen wherein she 1664; Palace of the Queen, wherein she 1668
  3. Its fabric’s built all] Whose fabrick is built 1653; Its Fabrick’s built 1664
  4. of a rainbow made] thereof a Rain-bow 1653
  5. Show] Which seemes 1653
  6. when one first enters] if one enter 1653
  7. made] are made 1653
  8. that is] that’s 1653
  9. Do give a fine] Which gives a 1653
  10. is carved] carved 1653
  11. made of a dove’s eyes’ skin,] of the Skin of Doves Eyes made, 1664; of the Skin of Dove’s Eyes made; 1668
  12. Her pillow a violet bud laid therein.] Where on a Violet Bud her Pillow’s laid; 1664; Where, on a Violet Bud, her Pillow’s laid. 1668
  13. doors] large doores 1653
  14. all of] of 1653
  15. when] as 1653
  16. These] The 1653
  17. locked up] locked 1653
  18. And when she goes to sleep,] The Queen’s asleep, and now 1653
  19. she doth pass] passes thus 1653
  20. will] shall 1653