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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Richard Barnfield (1574–1627)

Faithful Friends

WHILST as fickle fortune smiled

Thou and I were both beguiled.

Every one that flatters thee

Is no friend in misery.

Words are easy, like the wind:

Faithful friends are hard to find.

Every man will be thy friend

Whilst thou hast wherewith to spend;

But if store of crowns be scant,

No man will supply thy want.

If that one be prodigal,

Bountiful they will him call;

And with such-like flattering,

“Pity but he were a king!”

If he be addict to vice,

Quickly him they will entice;

If to woman he be bent,

They have him at commandment.

But if fortune once do frown,

Then farewell his great renown:

They have fawned on him before,

Use his company no more.

He that is thy friend indeed,

He will help thee in thy need:

If thou sorrow he will weep;

If thou wake he cannot sleep:

Thus of every grief in heart

He with thee doth bear a part.

These are certain signs to know

Faithful friend from flattering foe.