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HENRY HOWARD, EARL OF SURREY, was the grandson of the Duke of Norfolk who, for his services in the battle of Flodden, regained the title of Duke, lost by his father at Bosworth, where 'Dickon, his master, was bought and sold.' Great obscurity hangs over the personal history of the accomplished Surrey, and the few known facts have been blended with a mass of fable. He was born about the year 1517; in 1526 was made cupbearer to the king; in 1532 accompanied Henry on his famous visit to Boulogne; and the same year was contracted in marriage to Lady Francis Vere, daughter of the Earl of Oxford. On account of the youth of Surrey, the marriage, however, did not take place till 1535. In March 1536 his son Thomas was born. In 1542 he accompanied his father, commander of the English forces, to Scotland, and assisted in the campaign which devastated the Scottish Borders. Surrey was present at the burning of Kelso. In the subsequent war with France, Surrey was again distinguished; but the army he commanded was overpowered by numbers near St Etienne in January 1545-6, and shortly afterwards he was virtually recalled. The enmity of Lord Hertford is supposed to have aggravated the royal displeasure towards Surrey. In December 1546 he was committed to the Tower; he was tried on 13th January 1545-6, and executed on the 21st. Henry VIII. died a week afterwards, on the 28th. The charge against Surrey was that he had assumed the royal armsthe arms of Edward the Confessor. When he did so Henry was on his deathbed, and the assumption was part of a scheme to claim the regency

for the Howards instead of the Seymours. The poems of this chivalrous and unfortunate nobleman were not printed until ten years after his death. They were published in a volume entitled Tottel's Miscellany, 1557, the first collection of English poetry by different writers, and which ran through six editions in seven years. The lovestrains of Surrey, addressed to some unknown Geraldine, were adopted by Nash, the well-known dramatic poet and miscellaneous writer, as the basis of a series of romantic fictions, in which the noble poet was represented as travelling in Italy, proclaiming the beauty of his Geraldine, and defending her matchless charms in tilt and tournament. At the court of the emperor, Surrey was said to have met with the famous magician, Cornelius Agrippa, who shewed him, in a necromantic mirror, his Geraldine languishing on a couch reading one of his sonnets! The whole of this knightly legend was a fabrication by Nash, but it long held possession of the popular mind. All that is known of the poet's Geraldine is contained in this sonnet :

From Tuscane came my lady's worthy race;
Fair Florence was sometime their ancient seat;
The western isle whose pleasant shore doth face
Wild Camber's cliffs, did give her lively heat:
Fostered she was with milk of Irish breast;
Her sire, an earl; her dame of princes' blood:
From tender years, in Britain doth she rest
With king's child, where she tasteth costly food.
Hunsdon did first present her to my eyen:
Bright is her hue, and Geraldine she hight:
Hampton me taught to wish her first for mine;
And Windsor, alas! doth chase me from her sight.
Her beauty of kind, her virtue from above-
Happy is he that can obtain her love!

The description is here so minute and specific, that, if actually real, the lady must have been known to many of the readers of Surrey's manuscript verses. Horace Walpole endeavoured to prove that the Geraldine of the poet was Lady Elizabeth Fitzgerald; but Lady Elizabeth was only twelve or thirteen years old when Surrey is supposed to have fallen in love with her. Mr Hallam has said that Surrey did much for his own country and his native language, but that his taste is more striking than his genius. His poetry is certainly remarkable for correctness of style and purity of expression. He was among the first, if not the very first, to introduce blank verse into our poetry, and to reject the pedantry which overflows in the pages of his predecessors.

Prisoner in Windsor, he recounteth his Pleasure there passed.

So cruel prison how could betide, alas!

As proud Windsor? where I, in lust and joy, With a king's son, my childish years did pass,

In greater feast than Priam's son of Troy :

Where each sweet place returns a taste full sour!

The large green courts where we were wont to hove,1 With eyes cast up into the Maiden Tower,

And easy sighs such as folk draw in love.

The stately seats, the ladies bright of hue;

The dances short, long tales of great delight, With words and looks that tigers could but rue, Where each of us did plead the other's right.

1 Hover, loiter.

The palm-play, where, despoiled for the game,
With dazed eyes oft we by gleams of love,
Have missed the ball and got sight of our dame,
To bait her eyes, which kept the leads above.

The gravel ground, with sleeves tied on the helm

Of foaming horse,1 with swords and friendly hearts; With cheer, as though one should another whelm, Where we have fought, and chased oft with darts;

With silver drops the mead yet spread for ruth,

In active games of nimbleness and strength, Where we did strain, trained with swarms of youth, Our tender limbs that yet shot up in length:

The secret groves which oft we made resound,

Of pleasant plaint, and of our ladies' praise, Recording oft what grace each one had found, What hope of speed, what dread of long delays:

The wild forest, the clothed holts with green,

With reins availed and swift ybreathed horse; With cry of hounds, and merry blasts between,

Where we did chase the fearful hart of force.

The wide vales, eke, that harboured us each night,
Wherewith, alas, reviveth in my breast,
The sweet accord such sleeps as yet delight,

The pleasant dreams, the quiet bed of rest:

The secret thoughts imparted with such trust,

The wanton talk, the divers change of play, The friendship sworn, each promise kept so just ; Wherewith we passed the winter nights away.

And with this thought, the blood forsakes the face,
The tears berain my cheeks of deadly hue,
The which, as soon as sobbing sighs, alas,

Upsupped have, thus I my plaint renew:

O place of bliss! renewer of my woes,

Give me accounts, where is my noble fere;3 Whom in thy walls, thou dost each night inclose; To other leef, but unto me most dear:

Echo, alas! that doth my sorrow rue,

Returns thereto a hollow sound of plaint. Thus I alone, where all my freedom grew,

In prison pine with bondage and restraint, And with remembrance of the greater grief To banish the less, I find my chief relief.

How no Age is content with his Own Estate, and how the Age of Children is the happiest, if they had skill to understand it.

Laid in my quiet bed,

In study as I were,

I saw within my troubled head
A heap of thoughts appear.

And every thought did shew

So lively in mine eyes,
That now I sighed, and then I smiled,
As cause of thoughts did rise.

I saw the little boy,

In thought how oft that he
Did wish of God, to scape the rod,
A tall young man to be.

The young man eke that feels

His bones with pains opprest,
How he would be a rich old man,

To live and lie at rest:

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We add a few lines of Surrey's blank verse,

1 A lover tied the sleeve of his mistress on the head of his horse. from his translation of the Second Book of the 2 Reins dropped.

3 Companion.

4 Agreeable.


It was the time when, granted from the gods,
The first sleep creeps most sweet in weary folk,
Lo, in my dream before mine eyes, methought
With rueful cheer I saw where Hector stood
(Out of whose eyes there gushed streams of tears),
Drawn at a car as he of late had been,
Distained with bloody dust, whose feet were bowl'n1
With the strait cords wherewith they haled him.
Ay me, what one? That Hector how unlike
Which erst returned clad with Achilles' spoils,
Or when he threw into the Greekish ships
The Trojan flame!--So was his beard defiled,
His crisped locks all clustered with his blood,
With all such wounds as many he received
About the walls of that his native town.


In Tottel's Miscellany were also first printed the poems of SIR THOMAS WYATT (1503–1542), a distinguished courtier and man of wit, who was fortunate enough to escape the capricious tyranny of Henry VIII. and who may be said to have died in the king's service. While travelling on a mission to France, and riding fast in the heat of summer, he was attacked with a fever that proved mortal. Wyatt entertained a secret passion for Anne Boleyn, whom he has commemorated in his verse. His satires are more spirited than Surrey's, and one of his lighter pieces, his Ode to a Lute, is a fine amatory effusion. He was, however, inferior to his noble friend in general poetical power.

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But if till then my fingers play,
By thy desert their wonted way,
Blame not my Lute!

Farewell! unknown; for though thou break
My strings in spite with great disdain,
Yet have I found out, for thy sake,

Strings for to string my Lute again:
And if perchance this silly rhyme
Do make thee blush at any time,
Blame not my Lute!

The Re-cured Lover exulteth in his Freedom, and voweth to remain Free until Death.

I am as I am, and so will I be ;
But how that I am none knoweth truly.
Be it ill, be it well, be I bond, be I free,
I am as I am, and so will I be.

I lead my life indifferently;

I mean nothing but honesty;
And though folks judge full diversely,
I am as I am, and so will I die.

I do not rejoice, nor yet complain,
Both mirth and sadness I do refrain,
And use the means since folks will feign;
Yet I am as I am, be it pleasant or pain.

Divers do judge as they do trow, Some of pleasure and some of woe, Yet for all that nothing they know; But I am as I am, wheresoever I go.

But since judgers do thus decay,
Let every man his judgment say;
I will it take in sport and play,
For I am as I am, whosoever say nay.

Who judgeth well, well God them send;
Who judgeth evil, God them amend ;
To judge the best therefore intend.
For I am as I am, and so will I end.

Yet some there be that take delight,
To judge folk's thought for envy and spite;
But whether they judge me wrong or right,
I am as I am, and so do I write.

Praying you all that this do read,
To trust it as you do your creed;
And not to think I change my weed,
For I am as I am, however I speed.

But how that is I leave to you;
Judge as ye list, false or true,
Ye know no more than afore ye knew,
Yet I am as I am, whatever ensue.

And from this mind I will not flee,
But to you all that misjudge me,
I do protest, as ye may see,
That I am as I am, and so will be.

That Pleasure is mixed with every Pain.

Venomous thorns that are so sharp and keen

Bear flowers, we see, full fresh and fair of hue, Poison is also put in medicine,

And unto man his health doth oft renew. The fire that all things eke consumeth clean,

May hurt and heal: then if that this be true, I trust some time my harm may be my health, Since every woe is joined with some wealth.

The Courtier's Life.

In court to serve decked with fresh array,
Of sugared meats feeling the sweet repast,
The life in banquets and sundry kinds of play;
Amid the press the worldly looks to waste;
Hath with it joined oft-times such bitter taste,
That whoso joys such kind of life to hold,
In prison joys, fettered with chains of gold.

Of the Mean and Sure Estate.

Stand whoso lists upon the slippery wheel
Of high estate, and let me here rejoice,
And use my life in quietness each deal,
Unknown in court that hath the wanton joys.
In hidden place my time shall slowly pass,
And when my years be passed without annoy,
Let me die old after the common trace,
For grips of death do he too hardly pass
That known is to all, but to himself, alas!
He dieth unknown, dazed with dreadful face.


* In a sonnet by Sir Egerton Brydges on the death of Sir Walter Scott, is a fine line often quoted:

impression of their talents was great, and both were almost adored at court, though Boleyn was sacrificed by Henry VIII. on a revolting and groundless charge. We may mention, as illustrating the popularity of the first English Miscellany (that of Tottel), that it appears to have caught the attention of Shakspeare, who has transplanted some lines from it into his Hamlet, and that it soothed the confinement of Mary Queen of Scots, who is said to have written two lines from one of the poems with a diamond on a window in Fotheringay Castle. The lines are:

The glory dies not, and the grief is past.
The same sentiment had been thus expressed by Grimoald:

In working well if travel you sustain,
Into the wind shall lightly pass the pain,
But of the deed the glory shall remain.

And from the top of all my trust
Mishap hath thrown me in the dust.


THOMAS, LORD VAUX, was born about 1510, and died in the reign of Queen Mary. He was captain of the isle of Jersey under Henry VIII. Poems by Vaux are in Tottel's Miscellany, and no less than thirteen short pieces of his composition are in a second miscellany (prompted, no doubt, by the unexampled success of Tottel's collection), entitled The Paradise of Dainty Devices, 1576.NICHOLAS GRIMOALD (circa 1520-1563), a rhetorical lecturer in Oxford University, has two translations from the Latin of Philip Gaultier and Beza in Tottel's Miscellany, both of which are in blank verse. He wrote also several small poems." -RICHARD EDWARDS (circa 1523-1566) was the most valuable contributor to the Dainty Devices. He was master of the singing-boys of the royal chapel, and is known as a writer of court interludes and masks. His verses, entitled Amantium Iræ, are among the best of the miscellaneous poems of that age.-WILLIAM HUNNIS, who died in 1568, was also attached to Edward VI.'s chapel, and afterwards master of the boys of Queen Elizabeth's chapel. He translated the Psalms, and wrote some religious treatises and scriptural interludes. Mr Hallam considers that Hunnis should be placed as high as Vaux or Edwards, were his productions all equal to one little piece (a song which we subjoin); but too often,' adds the critic, 'he falls into trivial morality and a ridiculous Amantium Ira Amoris Redintegratio Est.-By Richard excess of alliteration.' These defects characterise most of the minor poets of this period.-Drayton, in one of his poetical epistles, mentions SIR FRANCIS BRYAN, nephew to Lord Berners, the translator of Froissart, as a contributor to Tottel's Miscellany; and GEORGE BOLEYN, VISCOUNT ROCHFORT (brother of Anne Boleyn), has been named as another contributor. The contemporary


On a Contented Mind.—By Lord Vaux.
From The Paradise of Dainty Devices, 1576.

When all is done and said,

In the end thus shall you find,
He most of all doth bathe in bliss
That hath a quiet mind:
And, clear from worldly cares,
To deem can be content
The sweetest time in all his life
In thinking to be spent.

The body subject is

To fickle Fortune's power,
And to a million of mishaps
Is casual every hour:
And Death in time doth change
It to a clod of clay;

When as the mind, which is divine,
Runs never to decay.

Companion none is like

Unto the mind alone;

For many have been harmed by speech;
Through thinking, few or none.
Fear oftentimes restraineth words,

But makes not thought to cease;
And he speaks best that hath the skill
When for to hold his peace.

Our wealth leaves us at death;
Our kinsmen at the grave;
But virtues of the mind unto

The heavens with us we have.
Wherefore, for virtue's sake,

I can be well content,
The sweetest time of all my life
To deem in thinking spent.

From the same.

In going to my naked bed, as one that would have slept, I heard a wife sing to her child, that long before had wept.

She sighed sore, and sang full sweet, to bring the babe

to rest,

That would not cease, but cried still, in sucking at her breast.

She was full weary of her watch, and grieved with her

She rocked it, and rated it, until on her it smiled;
Then did she say: 'Now have I found the proverb true

to prove,

The falling out of faithful friends renewing is of love.'

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She may be well compared
Unto the Phoenix kind,
Whose like was never seen or heard,
That any man can find.

In life she is Diana chaste;
In truth Penelope;

In word and eke in deed steadfast;
What will you more we say?

If all the world were sought so far, Who could find such a wight? Her beauty twinkleth like a star Within the frosty night.

Her roseal colour comes and goes
With such a comely grace,

More ruddier too than doth the rose,
Within her lively face.

At Bacchus' feast none shall her meet,
Ne at no wanton play,

Nor gazing in an open street,
Nor gadding as astray.

The modest mirth that she doth use,
Is mixed with shamefastness;
All vice she wholly doth refuse,
And hateth idleness.

O Lord, it is a world to see
How virtue can repair,
And deck her in such modesty,
Whom nature made so fair!

Truly she doth as far excel

Our women now-a-days, As doth the gilly-flower a weed, And more a thousand ways.

How might I do to get a graff
Of this unspotted tree?
For all the rest are plain but chaff
Which seem good corn to be.

This gift alone I shall her give:

When Death doth what he can, Her honest fame shall ever live Within the mouth of man.


THOMAS TUSSER, author of the first didactic poem in the language, was born about 1515, of an ancient family, had a good education, and commenced life at court, under the patronage of Lord Paget. Afterwards he practised farming_successively at Ratwood in Sussex, Ipswich, Fairsted in Essex, Norwich, and other places; but not succeeding in that walk, he betook himself to other occupations, amongst which were those of a chorister and, it is said, a fiddler. As might be expected of one so inconstant, he did not prosper in the world, but died poor in London, in 1580.

Tusser's poem, entitled a Hondreth Good Points of Husbandrie, which was first published in 1557, is a series of practical directions for farming, expressed in simple and inelegant, but not always dull verse. It was afterwards expanded by other writers, and published under the title of Five Hundreth Points of Good Husbandrie: the last of a considerable number of editions appeared in 1710.

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