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Him when the spiteful Briere he espyed,
Puffed up with pride and vain pleasance ; Causeless complained, and loudly cryed
But all this glee had no continuance : Unto his lord, stirring up stern strife:
For eftsoons winter 'gan to approach, O my liege lord ! the god of my life,
The blustering Boreas did encroach, Please you ponder your suppliant's plaint,
And beat upon the solitary Briere, Caused of wrong and cruel constraint,
For now no succour was seen him near. Which I your poor vassal daily endure;
Now 'gan he repent his pride too late, And but your goodness the same recure,
For naked left and disconsolate, And like for desperate dole to die,
The biting frost nipt his stalk dead, Through felonous force of mine enemy.'
The watry wet weighed down his head, Greatly aghast with this piteous plea,
And heaped snow burdned him so sore, Him rested the good man on the lea,
That now upright he can stand no more; And bade the Briere in his plaint proceed.
And being down, is trod in the dirt With painted words then gan this proud weed
Of cattle, and brouzed, and sorely hurt. (As most usen ambitious folk)
Such was th' end of this ambitious Briere,
For scorning eld.
From the Epithalamium.
Wake now, my love, awake ; for it is time ;
The rosy morn long since left Tithon's bed, How falls it then that this faded Oak,
All ready to her silver coach to climb; Whose body is sere, whose branches broke,
And Phæbus 'gins to shew his glorious head. Whose naked arms stretch unto the fire,
Hark! how the cheerful birds do chant their lays, Unto such tyranny doth aspire,
And carol of Love's praise. Hindring with his shade my lovely light,
The merry lark her matins sings aloft ; And robbing me of the sweet sun's sight?
The thrush replies; the mavis descant plays; So beat his old boughs my tender side,
The ouzel shrills ; the ruddock warbles soft ; That oft the blood springeth from wounds wide,
So goodly all agree, with sweet consent, Untimely my flowers forced to fall,
To this day's merriment. That been the honour of your coronal;
Ah! my dear love, why do you sleep thus long, And oft he lets his canker-worms light
When meeter were that you should now awake, Upon my branches, to work me more spight;
T' await the coming of your joyous make,
And hearken to the birds' love-learned song,
The dewy leaves among !
For they of joy and pleasance to you sing,
That all the woods them answer, and their echo ring.
My love is now awake out of her dream,
And her fair eyes, like stars that dimmed were And praying to be guarded from grievance.'
With darksome cloud, now shew their goodly beams To this this Oak cast him to reply
More bright than Hesperus his head doth rear. Well as he couth ; but his enemy
Come now, ye damsels, daughters of delight, Had kindled such coals of displeasure
Help quickly her to dight: That the good man nould stay his leisure,
But first come, ye fair Hours, which were begot, But home him hasted with furious heat,
In Jove's sweet paradise, of Day and Night; Encreasing his wrath with many a threat ;
Which do the seasons of the year allot, His harmful hatchet he hent in hand
And all, that ever in this world is fair, Alas! that it so ready should stand !
Do make and still repair; And to the field alone he speedeth
And ye three handmaids of the Cyprian Queen, Aye little help to harm there needeth
The which do still adorn her beauty's pride, Anger nould let him speak to the tree,
Help to adorn my beautifullest bride : Enaunter his rage might cooled be,
And, as ye her array, still throw between But to the root bent his sturdy stroke,
Some graces to be seen ; And made many wounds in the waste Oak.
And, as ye use to Venus, to her sing,
The whiles the woods shall answer, and your echo ring.
Now is my love all ready forth to come :
Let all the virgins therefore well await ; For it had been an ancient tree,
And ye, fresh boys, that tend upon her groom, Sacred with many a mystery,
Prepare yourselves, for he is coming straight. And often crost with the priests' crew,
Set all your things in seemly good array, And often hallowed with holy-water dew;
Fit for so joyful day : But like fancies weren foolery,
The joyfullest day that ever sun did see. And broughten this Oak to this misery ;
Fair Sun ! shew forth thy favourable ray, For nought might they quitten him from decay, And let thy lifeful heat not servent be, For fiercely the good man at him did lay.
For fear of burning her sunshiny face, The block oft groaned under his blow,
Her beauty to disgrace. And sighed to see his near overthrow.
O fairest Phæbus! father of the Muse ! In fine, the steel had pierced his pith,
If ever I did honour thee aright,
Or sing the thing that might thy mind delight,
Let all the rest be thine.
Then I thy sovereign praises loud will sing, Now stands the Briere like a lord alone,
That all the woods shall answer, and their echo ring. 84
Lo! where she comes along with portly pace,
Behold, whiles she before the altar stands, Like Phæbe, from her chamber of the east,
Hearing the holy priest that to her speaks, Arising forth to run her mighty race,
And blesseth her with his two happy hands, Clad all in white, that seems a virgin best.
How the red roses flush up in her cheeks, So well it her beseems, that ye would ween
And the pure snow, with goodly vermeil stain, Some angel she had been.
Like crimson dyed in grain ;
That even the angels, which continually
Forget their service, and about her fly,
Oft peeping in her face, that seems more fair, Seem like some maiden queen.
The more they on it stare. Her modest eyes, abashed to behold
But her sad eyes, still fastened on the ground, So many gazers as on her do stare,
Are governed with goodly modesty, Upon the lowly ground affixed are ;
That suffers not one look to glance awry, Ne dare lift up her countenance too bold,
Which may let in a little thought unsound. But blush to hear her praises sung so loud,
Why blush ye, love, to give to me your hand, So far from being proud.
The pledge of all our band ? Natheless do ye still loud her praises sing,
Sing, ye sweet angels, alleluya sing, That all the woods may answer, and your echo ring. That all the woods may answer, and your echo ring. * Tell me, ye merchants' daughters, did ye see So fair a creature in your town before? So sweet, so lovely, and so mild as she,
ROBERT SOUTHWELL. Adorned with beauty's grace, and virtue's store ;
ROBERT SOUTHWELL is remarkable as a victim Her goodly eyes like sapphires shining bright, Her forehead ivory white,
of the persecuting laws of the period. He was Her cheeks like apples which the sun hath rudded,
born in 1560, at St Faiths, Norfolk, of Roman Her lips like cherries charming men to bite,
Catholic parents, who sent him, when very young, Her breast like to a bowl of cream uncrudded. ..
to be educated at the English college at Douay, Why stand ye still, ye virgins in amaze,
in Flanders, and from thence to Rome, where, at Upon her so to gaze,
sixteen years of age, he entered the society of the Whiles ye forget your former lay to sing,
Jesuits. In 1584, he returned to his native country To which the woods did answer, and your echo ring? as a missionary, notwithstanding a law which
threatened all members of his profession found in But if ye saw that which no eyes can see, The inward beauty of her lively sprite,
England with death. For eight years he appears Garnished with heavenly gifts of high degree,
to have ministered secretly but zealously to the Much more then would ye wonder at that sight,
scattered adherents of his creed; but, in 1592, he And stand astonished like to those which read was apprehended at Uxenden, in Middlesex, and Medusa's mazeful head.
committed to a dungeon in the Tower. An imThere dwells sweet Love, and constant Chastity, prisonment of three years, with ten inflictions of Unspotted Faith, and comely Womanhood,
the rack, wore out his patience, and he entreated Regard of Honour, and mild Modesty;
to be brought to trial. Cecil is said to have made There Virtue reigns as queen in royal throne,
the brutal remark, that`if he was in so much haste And giveth laws alone,
to be hanged, he should quickly have his desire.' The which the base affections do obey,
Being at this trial found guilty, upon his own And yield their services unto her will;
confession, of being a Romish priest, he was conNe thought of things uncomely ever may
demned to death, and executed at Tyburn accordThereto approach to tempt her mind to ill. Had ye once seen these her celestial treasures,
ingly (February 21, 1595), with all the horrible And unrevealed pleasures,
circumstances dictated by the old treason-laws of Then would ye wonder and her praises sing,
England. That all the woods would answer, and your echo ring.
Southwell's poetical works were edited by W.
B. Turnbull, 1856. The prevailing tone of his Open the temple gates unto my love,
poetry is that of religious resignation. His short Open them wide that she may enter in,
pieces are the best. And all the posts adorn as doth behove,
His two longest productions, St Peter's ComAnd all the pillars deck with garlands trim,
plaint and Mary Magdalene's Funeral Tears, were For to receive this saint with honour due,
written in prison. After experiencing great popuThat cometh in to you. With trembling steps, and humble reverence,
larity in their own time, insomuch that eleven She cometh in, before the Almighty's view :
editions were printed between 1593 and 1600, Of her, ye virgins, learn obedience,
the poems of Southwell fell, like other producWhen so ye come into those holy places,
tions of the minor poets, into neglect. Some of To humble your proud faces :
his conceits are poetical in conception — for Bring her up to the high altar, that she may
example : The sacred ceremonies there partake, The which do endless matrimony make;
He that high growth on cedars did bestow,
Gave also lowly mushrooms leave to grow.
. It appears from the Royal Commission on Historical ManuThe choristers the joyous anthem sing,
scripts (1874), that there exists in Lancashire an account-book
containing interesting notices of Spenser. One Robert Nowell, That all the woods may answer, and their echo ring.
of Gray's Inn, left certain sums to provide gowns for thirty-two
poor scholars of the principal London schools, and at the head of 1 It is remarkable, as Warton observes, that all Spenser's the Merchant Taylors' poor boys is the name of Edmund Spenser. females, both in the Faery Queen and in his other poems, are
Other entries in Mr Nowell's book shew that, on going to Pemdescribed with gellow hair. This was perhaps in compliment to broke Hall, Cambridge, Spenser received 10s., and afterwards 6s. the queen, or to his fair Elizabeth, the object of this exquisite and as. 6d. The Merchant Taylors' Company may well be proud bridal-song.
of their 'poor scholar.'
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke,
The ashes, shames and scorns ; We trample grass and prize the flowers of May,
The fuel justice layeth on, Yet grass is green when flowers do fade away.
And mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought
Are men's defiled souls :
For which, as now on fire I am,
To work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath,
To wash them in my blood.'
With this he vanished out of sight,
And swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind
That it was Christmas Day.
Times go by Turns.
Most naked plants renew both fruit and flower ;
The sorriest wight may find release of pain,
The driest soil suck in some moistening shower: I read the label underneath,
Time goes by turns, and chances change by course,
From foul to fair, from better hap to worse.
The sea of Fortune doth not ever flow;
She draws her favours to the lowest ebb:
Her tides have equal times to come and go ;
Her loom doth weave the fine and coarsest web:
No joy so great but runneth to an 'end,
No hap so hard but may in fine amend.
Not always fall of leaf, nor ever spring,
Not endless night, yet not eternal day :
The saddest birds a season find to sing,
The roughest storm a calm may soon allay.
Thus, with succeeding turns, God tempereth all,
That man may hope to rise, yet fear to fall.
A chance may win that by mischance was lost;
That net that holds no great, takes little fish;
In some things all, in all things none are crossed ;
Few all they need, but none have all they wish.
Unmingled joys here to no man befall ;
Who least, hath some ; who most, hath never all.
And can I think to 'scape alone?
A rhyming history entitled Albion's England,
(1558-1609), an attorney of the Common Pleas. If strong, if wise, if all do smart,
It was admired in its own day, and is said to have Then I to 'scape shall have no way:
supplanted in popularity the Mirror for MagisThen grant me grace, O God! that I
trates. The poem is written in the long fourteenMy life may mend, since I must die.
syllable verse, but is tedious and monotonous. A
few lines will shew the style of the poem : The Burning Babe. Ben Jonson, in his conversations with Drummond of Hawthorn
The Life of a Shepherd. den, said Southwell ‘had so written that piece of his, The Burning babe, he (Jonson) would have been content to destroy many of Then choose a shepherd ; with the sun he doth his dock his.
unfold, As I in hoary winter's night
And all the day on hill or plain he merry chat can hold: Stood shivering in the snow,
And with the sun doth fold again : then jogging home Surprised I was with sudden heat,
betime, Which made my heart to glow;
He turns a crab, or tunes a round, or sings some merry And lifting up a fearful eye
rhyme ; To view what fire was near,
Nor lacks he gleeful tales to tell, whilst that the bowl A pretty Babe all burning bright,
doth trot : Did in the air appear;
And sitteth singing care away, till he to bed hath got. Who, scorched with excessive heat,
There sleeps he soundly all the night, forgetting morrow Such floods of tears did shed,
cares, As though his foods should quench his flames, Nor fears he blasting of his corn, or wasting of his wares, Which with his tears were bred.
Or storms by sea, or stirs on land, or crack of credit lost, Alas ! quoth he, 'but newly born,
Nor spending franklier than his flock shall still defray In fiery heats I fry,
the cost. Yet noné approach to warm their hearts
Well wot I, sooth they say, that say, more quiet nights Or feel my fire, but I;
and days My faultless breast the furnace is,
The shepherd sleeps and wakes than he whose cattle he The fuel, wounding thorns ;
From the Epistle to the Countess of Cumberland. He that of such a height hath built his mind, And reared the dwelling of his thoughts so strong, As neither hope nor fear can shake the frame Of his resolved powers ; nor all the wind Of vanity or malice pierce to wrong His settled peace, or to disturb the same : What a fair seat hath he, from whence he may The boundless wastes and wilds of man survey !
And with how free an eye doth he look down
SAMUEL DANIEL, son of a music-master, was born in 1562, near Taunton, in Somersetshire, and seems to have been educated under the patronage of the Pembroke family. In 1579, he was entered a commoner of Magdalen Hall, Oxford, where he chiefly devoted himself to the study of poetry and history; at the end of three years, he quitted the university, without taking a degree, and was appointed tutor to Anne Clifford, daughter of the Earl of Cumberland. After the death of Spenser, Daniel became what Mr Campbell calls 'voluntary laureate' to the court, but he was soon superseded by Ben Jonson. In the reign of James, he was appointed Master of the Queen's Revels, and inspector of the plays to be represented by the juvenile performers. He was also preferred to be a gentleman-extraordinary and groom of the chamber to Queen Anne. He lived in a gardenhouse in Old Street, St Luke's, where, according to Fuller, he would lie hid for some months together, the more retiredly to enjoy the company of the Muses, and then would appear in public to converse with his friends, whereof Dr Cowell and Mr Camden were principal.' Daniel is said also to have shared the friendship of Shakspeare, Marlowe, and Chapman. His character was irreproachable, and his
society appears to have been much courted. ‘Daniel,' says Coleridge, in a letter to Charles Lamb, 'caught and re-communicated the spirit of the great Countess of Pembroke, the glory of the north; he formed her mind, and her mind inspirited him. Gravely sober on all ordinary affairs, and not easily excited by any, yet there is one on which his blood boils-whenever he speaks of English valour exerted against a foreign enemy.' Coleridge seems to have felt a great admiration for the works and character of Daniel, and to have lost no opportunity of expressing it. Towards the close of his life, the poet retired to a farm he had at Beckington, in Somersetshire, where he died October 14, 1619.
The works of Daniel fill two considerable volumes. They include sonnets, epistles, masques, and dramas; but his principal production is a History of the Civil Wars between York and Lancaster, a poem in eight books, published in 1604. Musophilus, containing a General Defence of Learning, is another elaborate and thoughtful work by Daniel. His tragedies and masks fail in dramatic interest, and his epistles are perhaps the most pleasing and popular of his works. His style is remarkably pure, clear, and flowing, but wants animation. He has been called the well-languaged Daniel ;' and certainly the copiousness, ease, and smoothness of his language distinguish him from his contemporaries. He is quite modern in style. In taste and moral feeling he was also pre-eminent. Mr Hallam thinks Daniel wanted only greater confidence in his own power ; but he was deficient in fire and energy. His thoughtful, equable verse flows on unintermittingly, and never offends; but it becomes tedious and uninteresting from its sameness, and the absence of what may be called salient points. His quiet graces and vein of moral reflection are, however, well worthy of study. His Epistle to the Countess of Cumberland is a fine effusion of meditative thought.
He looks upon the mightiest monarch's wars,
Richard II. the Morning before his Murder in
Pontefract Castle. Whether the soul receives intelligence, By her near genius, of the body's end, And so imparts a sadness to the sense, Foregoing ruin whereto it doth tend; Or whether nature else hath conference With profound sleep, and so doth warning send, By prophetising dreams, what hurt is near, And gives the heavy careful heart to fear : However, so it is, the now sad king, Tossed here and there his quiet to confound, Feels a strange weight of sorrows gathering Upon his trembling heart, and sees no ground; Feels sudden terror bring cold shivering; Lists not to eat, still muses, sleeps unsound; His senses droop, his steady eyes unquick, And much he ails, and yet he is not sick. The morning of that day which was his last, After a weary rest, rising to pain, Out at a little grate his eyes he cast Upon those bordering hills and open plain, Where others' liberty make him complain The more his own, and grieves his soul the more, Conferring captive crowns with freedom poor.
'O happy man,' saith he, 'that lo I see, Grazing his cattle in those pleasant fields,
Ulysses and the Syren. If he but knew his good. How blessed he
SYREN. That feels not what affliction greatness yields !
Come, worthy Greek, Ulysses, come, Other than what he is he would not be,
Possess these shores with me; Nor change his state with him that sceptre wields.
The winds and seas are troublesome, Thine, thine is that true life : that is to live,
And here we may be free. To rest secure, and not rise up to grieve.
Here may we sit and view their toil,
That travail in the deep, • Thou sitt'st at home safe by thy quiet fire,
Enjoy the day in mirth the while,
And spend the night in sleep.
Fair nymph, if fame or honour were Of my restraint, why here I live alone,
To be attained with ease, And pitiest this my miserable fall;
Then would I come and rest with thee, For pity must have part-envy not all.
And leave such toils as these :
But here it dwells, and here must I 'Thrice happy you that look as from the shore,
With danger seek it forth; And have no venture in the wreck you see ;
To spend the time luxuriously
Becomes not men of worth.
Ulysses, oh, be not deceived Whose blinded greatness, ever in turmoil,
With that unreal name : Still seeking happy life, makes life a toil.'
This honour is a thing conceived,
And rests on others' fame.
Begotten only to molest
Our peace, and to beguile Ah, I remember well—and how can I
(The best thing of our lise) our rest, But evermore remember well-when first
And give us up to toil !
Delicious nymph, suppose there were Not what we ailed, yet something we did ail,
No honour, or report, And yet were well, and yet we were not well,
Yet manliness would scorn to wear And what was our disease we could not tell.
The time in idle sport : Then would we kiss, then sigh, then look: and thus
For toil doth give a better touch In that first garden of our simpleness
To make us feel our joy; We spent our childhood. But when years began
And ease finds tediousness, as much To reap the fruit of knowledge; ah, how then
As labour yields annoy.
Then pleasure likewise seems the shore, What she would have me, yet not have me know.
Whereto tends all your toil;
Which you forego to make it more, Sonnets.
And perish ost the while.
Who may disport them diversely, I must not grieve my love, whose eyes would read
Find never tedious day; Lines of delight, whereon her youth might smile;
And ease may have variety,
As well as action may.
But natures of the noblest frame And where the sweetest blossom first appears,
These toils and dangers please ; Let love and youth conduct thy pleasures thither,
And they take comfort in the same, Lighten forth smiles to clear the clouded air,
As much as you in ease : And calm the tempest which my sighs do raise :
And with the thought of actions past Pity and smiles do best become the fair ;
Are recreated still : Pity and smiles must only yield thee praise.
When pleasure leaves a touch at last Make me to say, when all my griess are gone,
To shew that it was ill. Happy the heart that sighed for such a one.
SYREN. Care-charmer Sleep, son of the sable Night,
That doth opinion only cause, Brother to Death, in silent darkness born,
That's out of custom bred ; Relieve my anguish, and restore the light,
Which makes us many other laws, With dark forgetting of my care, return.
Than ever nature did. And let the day be time enough to mourn
No widows wail for our delights, The shipwreck of my ill-advised youth;
Our sports are without blood; Let waking eyes suffice to wail their scorn,
The world we see by warlike wights Without the torments of the night's untruth.
Receives more hurt than good.
But yet the state of things require To add more grief, to aggravate my sorrow.
These motions of unrest, Still let me sleep, embracing clouds in vain,
And these great spirits of high desire And never wake to feel the day's disdain.
Seem born to turn them best :