Imagens das páginas
[blocks in formation]

Farster laen by John Waley," I think, no where mentioned by bibliographers. It is in the form of a


• And to begyu
At settyng in;
Fyrst was her skyn
Whith, smoth and thyn,
And every vayne
So blewe sene playne ;
Her golden heare
To see her weare,
Her weryng gere,
Alas! I fere
To tell all to you
I shall vndo you.

eye so rollyng
Ech harte conterollyng ;
Her nose not long,
Nor stode not wrong:
Her finger typs
So clene she clyps;
Her rosy lyps,
Her chekes gossyps,
So fayre so ruddy,
It axeth studdy

| The “Biographia Dramatica" mentions, clearly at random, an edition printed in 4to., 1533, without giving any printer's name or other particulars. The Rev. Dr. Dibdin does not include “the Play of Love" among works from the press of John Walley, or Waley: Ames and Herbert are also silent regarding it, and there is no notice of it in Collier's “ History of English Dramatic Poetry.” Such omissions decisively establish the rarity of “The Play of Love."

The hole to tell ;
It dyd excell.
It was so made,
That evyn the shade

euery glade
Wolde hartes inuade:

And rounde with all ;
The wast not myckyll,
But it was tyckyll :
The thygh, the kne,
As they sholde be;
But suche a leg
A lover wold beg
To set eye on,
But it is gon :
Then, syght of the fote
Ryft hartes to the rote."

Sign, c. i.

[ocr errors]

There can be no dispute that the above is at least as good as anything of the kind by Skelton; and if the Rev. A. Dyce had read Heywood's “ Play of Love,” he could uot have failed to quote the song. That he was acquainted with some of the other works of the same poet is obvious, because he cites them here and there, and to good purpose.

Oxford, May 20, 1814.

ART. XVII.-Shakespeare's Bust at Stratford-upon-Arun.

A member of the Shakespeare Society is desirous to ascertain if the Council, or any member of the Society, can give information whether the bust of Shakespeare in the chancel of the church at Stratford-upon-Avon, placed there by his daughter Susanna and her husband, Dr. Hall (his two executors), a few years after his death, is composed of marble or stone.

The sculptured effigies on the tombs of Clopton and Combe families in the said church are of polished marble, stained according to the colouring of nature, with the habiliments also stained in colours (as was the practice in those days), of which we have evidence among the tombs in Westminster Abbey.

Upon Mr. Malone's visit to Stratford in 1793, he, being displeased with Shakespeare's bust in colour, caused it to be painted over with white paint, upon which an indignant critic, incensed at such defacement, wrote the following lines :

Stranger, to whom this monument is shown,
Invoke the Poet's curses on Malone,
Whose meddling zeal his barb’rous taste betrays,
And daub'd his tomstone, as he marr’d his plays."

The object of the writer is to ascertain if the bust, as originally placed, was of marble stained in colours, or of stone painted in colours with common paints; for, if it should be of marble stained (like the other effigies in the church), it is presumable that it will not be a difficult process to divest it of its present coat of white paint, and so restore it to its original appearance.

It is reasonable to conclude that the coloured bust was as perfect a likeness of Shakespeare as sculpture could produce, since it was placed there by his daughter Susanna, who, we may be assured, entertained the most affectionate regard for the

memory of her all-gifted father, by placing so distinguished a memorial of him in the parish church. And that she possessed a mind capable of appreciating the exalted genius of that ** wonder of the age,” may be gathered from the lines inscribed upon her own tomb, after her decease in 1649, viz.

Witty above her sexe, but that's not all,
Wise to salvation was good Mistris Hall ;
Something of Shakespeare was in that, but this
Wholly of Him, with whom she's now in bliss."


The restoration of the bust to its primitive state seems due not only to the memory of Shakespeare, but also as a tribute of respect to the memory of his daughter, who acted as if she had felt it a duty to transmit the most perfect likeness of him to the admiration of posterity.

With a view towards effecting the proposed restoration, it is submitted to the Society generally, as a request, that such as may feel an interest therein do express their sentiments thereupon (by letter, addressed to the Secretary), in order that the Council may form a judgment whether the public feeling is sufficiently developed as to justify their addressing an application to the proper authorities at Stratford to sanction and give effect to the measure.

ART. XVIII.-Poem attributed to Thomas Nash.

When at Oxford, not long since, I met with a manuscript regarding which some brief notice may be desirable: it has reference to a short poem, inserted in the Introduction to the Shakespeare Society's reprint of Nash's “ Pierce Penniless's Supplication to the Devil,” p. xxi.

Two stanzas are there attributed to Nash, which stanzas close his edition of Sir Philip Sydney's “ Astrophel and Stella," in 1591 : it is stated, that they have never been mentioned by any of the biographers of Nash ; and I believe that the writer of that “ Introduction” might have gone farther, and have said that they had entirely escaped notice from the hour of their original appearance to the present.

I do not mean to dispute that they are by Nash, and they are certainly much in his manner; but what I wish to point attention to is the fact, that these two stanzas, (in a different order and with some variations) and a third, are found in manuscript in a volume of Tanner's books in the Bodleian Library. The earlier part of the volume contains several printed productions by Nicholas Breton, including his “ Melancholike Humours," 1600,' but at the end are bound up some

· Possibly, room may be spared in a note for a graceful and feeling tribute by Breton to Spenser (who had then been dead only about two years) contained in his “Melancholike Humours," and which I do not find noticed by the Rev. Mr. Todd, or by any of the other biographers of the author of " The Fairy Queen.” It is headed

" An Epitaph upon Poet Spencer.

“ Mournfull Muses, sorrowes minions,
Dwelling in despaire's opinions;
Yee that never thought invented,
How a heart may be contented

« AnteriorContinuar »