- Year Published: 1609
- Language: English
- Country of Origin: England
- Source: Shakespeare, W. The sonnets. In R. G. White (Ed.), The complete works of William Shakespeare. New York: Sully and Kleinteich.
- Flesch–Kincaid Level: 11.0
- Word Count: 119
Shakespeare, W. (1609). Sonnet 129. The Sonnets (Lit2Go Edition). Retrieved June 23, 2021, from
Shakespeare, William. "Sonnet 129." The Sonnets. Lit2Go Edition. 1609. Web. <>. June 23, 2021.
William Shakespeare, "Sonnet 129," The Sonnets, Lit2Go Edition, (1609), accessed June 23, 2021,.
Th’ expense of spirit in a waste of shame
Is lust in action, and till action, lust
Is perjured, murd’rous, bloody full of blame,
Savage, extreme, rude, cruel, not to trust,
Enjoyed no sooner but despised straight,
Past reason hunted, and no sooner had
Past reason hated as a swallowed bait,
On purpose laid to make the taker mad.
Mad in pursuit and in possession so,
Had, having, and in quest, to have extreme,
A bliss in proof and proved, a very woe,
Before a joy proposed behind a dream.
All this the world well knows yet none knows well,
To shun the heaven that leads men to this hell.