Classic Novels, Ranked in Order of How Easy They Are to Study
Some glory in their birth, some in their skill,
Some in their wealth, some in their body’s force,
Some in their garments, though new-fangled ill,
Some in their hawks and hounds, some in their horse;
And every humor hath his adjunct pleasure,
Wherein it finds a joy above the rest.
But these particulars are not my measure;
All these I better in one general best.
Thy love is better than high birth to me,
Richer than wealth, prouder than garments' cost,
Of more delight than hawks or horses be;
And having thee, of all men’s pride I boast;
Wretched in this alone, that thou mayst take
All this away, and me most wretched make.
Some people are proud of the social status they’ve inherited; some people of their abilities; some of their wealth; some of how strong they are; some of their clothes, though the clothes are trendy and weird; some are proud of their hawks and hounds; some of their horses; and every individual temperament has its particular pleasure, something the person enjoys above everything else. But I don’t measure happiness by any of these things. There’s something else that’s better than them all. To me, your love is better than high social status, more valuable than wealth, more worth being proud of than expensive clothes, and more enjoyable than hawks or horses. And having you, I have something better than what other men are proud of—except I’m wretched in this one respect: You can take all this away from me and make me completely wretched.