Shakespeare’s Sonnet 106:
When in the chronicle of wasted time
I see descriptions of the fairest wights,
And beauty making beautiful old rhyme,
In praise of ladies dead and lovely knights,
Then, in the blazon of sweet beauty’s best,
Of hand, of foot, of lip, of eye, of brow,
I see their antique pen would have expressed
Even such a beauty as you master now.
So all their praises are but prophecies
Of this our time, all you prefiguring;
And for they looked but with divining eyes,
They had not skill enough your worth to sing:
For we, which now behold these present days,
Have eyes to wonder, but lack tongues to praise.
Multiple editors note similarities with Samuel Daniel‘s sonnet 46 but past the surface alignment of the openings I don’t much see it. And even the opening seems to move in two different directions – Daniel using a light priamel to launch a future-looking perspective, Shakespeare staying with the past and imagining how it looks forward to its future/his present.
Let others sing of knights and paladins
In aged accents and untimely words;
Paint shadows in imaginary lines
Which well the reach of their high wits records:
But I must sing of thee, and those fair eyes
Authentic shall my verse in time to come,
When yet th’ unborn shall say, “Lo where she lies
Whose beauty made him speak that else was dumb.”
These are the arks, the trophies I erect,
That fortify thy name against old age;
And these thy sacred virtues must protect
Against the dark, and time’s consuming rage.
Though th’ error of my youth they shall discover,
Suffice they show I liv’d and was thy lover.