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Famous Adultery Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Adultery poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous adultery poems. These examples illustrate what a famous adultery poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Bradstreet, Anne
...13 O Jane, why didst thou die in flow'ring prime?--
114 Because of Royal Stem, that was thy crime.
115 For Bribery, Adultery, for Thefts, and Lies
116 Where is the Nation I can't paralyze?
117 With Usury, Extortion, and Oppression,
118 These be the Hydras of my stout transgression;
119 These be the bitter fountains, heads, and roots
120 Whence flow'd the source, the sprigs, the boughs, and fruits.
121 Of more than thou canst hear or I relate,
122 That with high hand I...Read More

by Wilmot, John, and gluttony.
Who hunt good livings; but abhor good lives,
Whose lust exalted, to that height arrives,
They act adultery with their own wives.
And ere a score of years completed be,
Can from the loftiest pulpit proudly see,
Half a large parish their own progeny.
Nor doting bishop, who would be adored
For domineering at the Council board;

A greater fop, in business at fourscore,
Fonder of serious toys, affected more,
Than the gay, glittering fool at twenty pro...Read More

by Alighieri, Dante
...The path to open. It is willed on high, - 
 There, where the Angel of the Sword ye know 
 Took ruin upon the proud adultery 
 Of him thou callest as thy prince." 

 As sails, wind-rounded, when the mast gives way, 
 Sink tangled to the deck, deflated so 
 Collapsed that bulk that heard him, shrunk and flat; 
 And we went downward till before us lay 
 The fourth sad circle. Ah! what woes contain, 
 Justice of God! what woes those narrowing deeps 
 Contai...Read More

by Marvell, Andrew
...r (verse the name abhors) 
Plenipotentiary ambassadors 
To prove by Scripture treaty does imply 
Cessation, as the look adultery, 
And that, by law of arms, in martial strife, 
Who yields his sword has title to his life. 
Presbyter Holles the first point should clear, 
The second Coventry the Cavalier; 
But, whould they not be argued back from sea, 
Then to return home straight, infecta re. 
But Harry's ordered, if they won't recall 
Their fleet, to threaten--we will ...Read More

by Milton, John was turned to jollity and game, 
To luxury and riot, feast and dance; 
Marrying or prostituting, as befel, 
Rape or adultery, where passing fair 
Allured them; thence from cups to civil broils. 
At length a reverend sire among them came, 
And of their doings great dislike declared, 
And testified against their ways; he oft 
Frequented their assemblies, whereso met, 
Triumphs or festivals; and to them preached 
Conversion and repentance, as to souls 
In prison, under j...Read More

by Wilmot, John
...and Gluttony. 
Who hunt good Livings, but abhor good Lives, 
Whose Lust exalted, to that height arrives, 
They act Adultery with their own Wives. 
And e're a score of Years compleated be, 
Can from the lofty Pulpit proudly see, 
Half a large Parish, their own Progeny. 
Nor doating Bishop who wou'd be ador'd, 
For domineering at the Councel Board; 
A greater Fop, in business at Fourscore, 
Fonder of serious Toyes, affected more, 
Than the gay glitt'ring Fool, at T...Read More

by Rich, Adrienne
...hat we might have been,
all that we were--fire, tears,
wit, taste, martyred ambition--
stirs like the memory of refused adultery
the drained and flagging bosom of our middle years.


Not that it is done well, but
that it is done at all? Yes, think
of the odds! or shrug them off forever.
This luxury of the precocious child,
Time's precious chronic invalid,--
would we, darlings, resign it if we could?
Our blight has been our sinecure:
mere talent was enough for us--
...Read More

by Lehman, David
...n a shelf in the mud room
With last summer's sand. The cycle of sexual captivity
Beginning in romance and ending in adultery
Was now in the late middle phases, the way America
Had gone from barbarism to amnesia without
A period of high decadence, which meant something,
But what? A raft on the rapids? The violinist
At the gate? Oh, absolute is the law of biology.
For the *********** seminar, what should she wear?...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey,
That boldely did execution,
In punishing of fornication,
Of witchecraft, and eke of bawdery,
Of defamation, and adultery,
Of churche-reeves,* and of testaments, *churchwardens
Of contracts, and of lack of sacraments,
And eke of many another manner* crime, *sort of
Which needeth not rehearsen at this time,
Of usury, and simony also;
But, certes, lechours did he greatest woe;
They shoulde singen, if that they were hent;* *caught
And smale tithers were foul y-shent,* ...Read More

by Clough, Arthur Hugh, all
From whom advancement may befall:
Thou shalt not kill; but need'st not strive
Officiously to keep alive:
Do not adultery commit;
Advantage rarely comes of it:
Thou shalt not steal; an empty feat,
When 'tis so lucrative to cheat:
Bear not false witness; let the lie
Have time on its own wings to fly:
Thou shalt not covet, but tradition
Approves all forms of competition....Read More

by Blake, William
...and so mock the
sabbaths God? murder those who were murderd because of him? turn away 
the law from the woman taken in adultery? steal the labor of others 
to support him? bear false witness when he omitted making a defence 
before Pilate? covet when he pray'd for his disciples, and when he 
bid them shake off the dust of their feet against such as refused to
lodge them? I tell you, no virtue can exis without breaking these 
ten commandments: Jesus was all virtue and acted f...Read More

by Herrick, Robert
...l slit her nose; but blubbering she replies,
"Good sir, make no more cuts i' th' outward skin,
One slit's enough to let adultery in....Read More

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