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beyond Gospell bushe: noe ground in Sandfield, nor none indicate that he would be capable of a work of such power Slow Hill field beyond Bishopton, nor none in the enclosures and variety. It is divided into three portions, the 6 Chabeyond Bishopton."
racter," the “Legend," and the “Tragedy” of Richard III. ; The date of this paper is 5th September, 1614, and, as and the second part opens with the following stanzas, which we have said, we may presume that it was chiefly upon this show the high estimate the writer had formed of the genius business that Shakespeare came to London on the 16th No-l of Shakespeare: they are extremely interesting as a convember. It should appear that Thomas Greene, of Strat- I temporaneous tributë. Richard, narrating his own history, ford, was officially opposing the inclosure on the part of the thus speaks: corporation; and it is probable that Shakespeare's wishes
66 To him that impt my fame with Clio's quill, were accordant with those of the majority of the inhabi
Whose magick rais'd me from Oblivion's deu, tants : however this might be, (and it is liable to dispute That writ iny storie on the Muses hill, which party Shakespeare favoured) the members of the mu And with my actions dignified his pen; nicipal body of the borough were nearly unanimous, and, as He that from Helicon sends many a rill, far as we can learn from the imperfect particulars remain
Whose nectared veines are drunke by thirstie men; ing upon this subject, they wished our poet to use his influence
Crown'd be his stile with fame, his head with bayes, to resist the project, which seems to have been supported
And none detract, but gratulate his praise. by Mr. Arthur Mainwaring, then resident in the family of
" Yet if his scenes have not engrost all grace, Lord Ellesmere as auditor of his domestic expenditure.
The much fam'd action could extend on stage ; It is very likely that Shakespeare saw Mainwaring; and,
If Time or Memory have left a place
For me to fill, t'en forme this ignorant age. as it was only five or six years since his name had been es
To that intent I shew my horrid face, pecially brought under the notice of the Lord Chancellor,
Imprest with feare and characters of rage : in relation to the claim of the city authorities to jurisdiction Nor wits nor chronicles could ere containe in the Blackfriars, it is not impossible that Shakespeare The hell-deepe reaches of my soundlesse braine3." may have had an interview with Lord Ellesmere, who
The above is the last extant panegyric upon Shakeseems at all times to have been of a very accessible and
speare during his lifetime, and it exceeds, in point of feryour kindly disposition. Greene was in London on the 17th No
and zeal, if not in judicious criticism, any that had gone bevember, and sent to Stratford a short account of his pro
fore it; for Richard tells the reader, that the writer of the ceedings on the question of the inclosure, in which he men
scenes in which he had figured on the stage had imped tioned that he had seen Shakespeare and Mr. Hall (proba
his fame with the quill of the historic muse, and that, by bly meaning Shakespeare's son-in-law) on the preceding the mai
| the magic of verse, he who had written so much and so day, who told him that they thought nothing would be fine
finely, had raised him from oblivion. That C. B. was an done? Greene returned to Stratford soon afterwards, and
author of distinction, and well known to some of the greatest having left our poet in London, at the instance of the cor
poets of the day, we have upon their own evidence, from poration, he subsequently wrote two letters, one to Shake
the terms they use in their commendatory poems, subspeare, and the other to Mainwaring, (the latter only has
scribed by no less names than those of Ben Jonson*, George been preserved) setting forth in strong terms the injury the Chapman William Browne. Robert Daborne, and George inclosure would do to Stratford, and the heavy loss the in- Wither. The author professes to follow no particular habitants had not long before sustained from the fire. A original. Whether in prose or verse, narrative or dramatic, petition was also prepared and presented to the privy in
Ny in chronicles, plays, or poems," but to adopt the incidents
phronicles council, and we may gather that the opposition was effect
as they had been handed down on various authorities. As ual, because nothing was done in the business: the common
we have stated, his work is one of great excellence, but it fields of Welcombe, which it had been intended to inclose,
to mclose, would be going too much out of our way to enter here into remained open for pasture as before. How soon after the matter relating to the inclosure had
any farther examination of it. been settled Shakespeare returned to Stratford,--how long he remained there, or whether he ever came to London
CHAPTER XX. again,--we are without information. He was very possibly in the metropolis at the time when a narrative poem,
Shakespeare's return to Stratford. Marriage of his daughter
Judith to Thomas Quiney in February, 1616. Shakefounded in part upon his historical play of “Richard III.,"
speare's will prepared in January, but dated March, 1616. was published, and which until now has escaped observa His last illness: attended by Dr. Hall, his son-in-law. tion, although it contains the clearest allusion, not indeed by Uncertainty as to the nature of Shakespeare's fatal malady. name, to our author and to his tragedy. It is called “The His birth-day and death-day the same. Entry of his burial Ghost of Richard the Third," and it bears date in 1614; in the register at Stratford. His will, and circumstances to but the writer, C. B., only gives his initials”. We know of prove that it was prepared two months before it was executno poet of that day to whom they would apply, excepting ed. His bequest to his wife, and provision for her by dower. Charles Best, who has several pieces in Davison's “ Poetical The autumn seems to have been a very usual time for Rhapsody," 1602, but he has left nothing behind him to in-publishing new books, and Shakespeare having been in London in the middle of November, 1614, as we have re- might be deferred until he was attacked by serious indismarked, he was perhaps there when “The Ghost of Rich- position, and then the date of the month only might be ard the Third" came out, and, like Ben Jonson, Chapman, altered, leaving the assertion as to health and memory as and others, might be acquainted with the author. He pro- it had originally stood. What was the nature of Shakebably returned home before the winter, and passed the speare's fatal illness we have no satisfactory means of rest of his days in tranquil retirement, and in the enjoyment knowing?, but it was probably not of long duration ; -and if of the society of his friends, whether residing in the country, when he subscribed his will he had really been in health, or occasionally visiting him from the metropolis. “The we are persuaded that at the age of only fifty-two he would latter part of his life," says Rowe, “was spent, as all men have signed his name with greater steadiness and distinctof good sense will wish theirs may be, in ease, retirement, ness. All three signatures are more or less infirm and illeand the society of his friends;" and he adds what cannot be gible, especially the two first, but he seems to have made doubted, that “his pleasurable wit and good-nature en- an effort to write his best when he affixed both his names gaged him in the acquaintance, and entitled him to the at length at the end, “By me William Shakspeare." friendship of the gentlemen of the neighbourhood." He We hardly need entertain a doubt that he was attended must have been of a lively and companionable disposition; in his last illness by his son-in-law, Dr. Hall, who had then and his long residence in London, amid the bustling and been married to Susanna Shakespeare more than eight years: varied scenes connected with his public life, independently we have expressed our opinion that Dr. and Mrs. Hali lived of his natural powers of conversation, could not fail to ren- in the same house with our poet, and it is to be recollected der his society most agreeable and desirable. We can that in his will he leaves New Place to his daughter Susanreadily believe that when any of his old associates of the na. Hall must liave been a man of considerable science for stage, whether authors or actors, came to Stratford, they the time at which he practised, and he has left behind him found a hearty welcome and free entertainment at his proofs of his knowledge and skill in a number of cases house : and that he would be the last man, in his pros- which had come under his own eye, and which he described perity, to treat with slight or indifference those with whom, in Latin : these were afterwards translated from his manuin the earlier part of his career, he had been on terms of script, and published in 1657 by Jonas Cooke, with the title familiar intercourse. It could not be in Shakespeare's na- of “ Select Observations on English Bodies," but the case ture to disregard the claims of ancient friendship, especially of Dr. Hall's father-in-law is not found there, because, unif it approached him in a garb of comparative poverty. fortunately the “ observations” only begin in 1617. One of
1 The memorandum of the contents of his letter to which we have It is about to be reprinted by the Shakespeare Society, and on every already referred on p. lxii.) is in these terms, avoiding abbreviations :- account it well merits the distinction. "Jovis, 17 No. My cosen Shakespeare comyng yesterday, I went
3 We may suspect, in the last line but one, that the word " wits" to see him, how he did. He told me that they assured him they ment has been misprinted 'for acts. The stanza which follows the above to inclose no further than to Gospel bush, and so upp straight (leaving
refers to another play, founded on a distinct portion of the same hisout part of the Dyngles to the field) to the gate in Clopton hedg, and
tory, and relating especially to Jane Shore :take in Salisburys peece; and that they mean in Aprill to survey the land, and then to gyve satisfaction, and not before : and he and Mr.
“And what a peece of justice did I shew Hall say they think there will be nothyng done at all."
On mistresse Shore, when (with a fained hate In what way, or in what degree, Shakespeare and Greene were re
To unchast life) I forced her to goe lated, so that the latter should call the former his "cousin,' must
Barefoote on pennance, with dejected state. remain a matter of speculation ; but it will be recollected that the
But now her fame by à vile play doth grow, parish register of Stratford shows that " Thomas Greene, alias Shake
Whose fate the women do commisserate," &c. speare," was buried on 6th March, 1589-90. Whether Thomas The allusion may here be to Heywood's historical drama of " EdGreene, the solicitor, was any relation to Thomas Greene, the actor, ward IV." (reprinted by the Shakespeare Society), in which Shore's we have no means of ascertaining.
wife is introduced ; or it may be to a different drama upon the events 2 And these not on the title-page, but at the end of the prefatory of her life, which, it is known on various authorities, had been matter : the whole title runs thus:
brought upon the stage. “The Ghost of Richard the Third. Expressing himselfe in these 4 It appears from Henslowe's Diary, that in June, 1602, Ben Jonthree Parts. 1. His Character. 2 His Legend. 3. His Tragedie, son was himself writing a historical play, called "Richard CrookContaining more of him than hath been heretofore shewed, either in back," for the Lord Admiral's players at the Fortune. We have no Chronicles, Playes, or Poems. Laurea Desidie probetur nulla. evidence that it was ever completed or represented. Ben Jonson's Printed by G. Eld: for L. Lisle : and are to be sold in Paules Church- testimony in favour of the poem of C. B. is compressed into a few yard, at the signe of the Tygers head. 1614." 4to.
One of the very latest acts of his life was bestowing the the earliest of them shows that an epidemic, called the “new hand of his daughter Judith upon Thomas Quiney, a vintner fever," then prevailed in Stratford and “invaded many." and wine-merchant of Stratford, the son of Richard Quiney. Possibly Shakespeare was one of these; though, had such She must have been four years older than her husband, been the fact, it is not unlikely that, when speaking of “the having as already stated, been born on 2nd February, 1585, Lady Beaufou” who suffered under it on July 1st, 1617, Dr. while he was not born until 26th February, 1589: he was Hall would have referred back to the earlier instance of his consequently twenty-seven years old, and she thirty-one, at father-in-law. He does advert to a tertian ague of which, the time of their marriage in February, 16161; and Shake- at a period not mentioned, he had cured Michael Drayton, speare thus became father-in-law to the son of the friend (“an excellent poet," as Hall terms him) when he was, perwho, eighteen years before, had borrowed of him 301., and haps, on a visit to Shakespeare. However, Drayton, as forwho had died on 31st May, 1602, while he was bailiff of merly remarked, was a native of Warwickshire, and Dr. Stratford. As there was a difference of four years in the Hall may have been called in to attend him elsewhere. ages of Judith Shakespeare and her husband, we ought! We are left, therefore, in utter uncertainty as to the imperhaps to receive that fact as some testimony, that our mediate cause of the death of Shakespeare at an age when great dramatist did not see sufficient evil in such dispropor- he would be in full possession of his faculties, and when in tion to in duce him to oppose the union.
the ordinary course of nature he might have lived many His will had been prepared as long before its actual date years in the enjoyment of the society of his family and as 25th January, 1615-16, and this fact is apparent on the friends, in that grateful and easy retirement, which had been face of it: it" originally began “ Vicesimo quinto die earned by his genius and industry, and to obtain which had Januarij," (not Februarij, as Malone erroneously read it) apparently been the main object of many years of toil, but the word Januarij was subsequently struck through anxiety, and deprivation. with a pen, and Martij substituted by interlineation. Pos- l Whatever doubt may prevail as to the day of the birth sibly it was not thought necessary to alter vicesimo quinto, of Shakespeare, none can well exist as to the day of his or the 25th March might be the very day the will was exe- death. The inscription on his monument in Stratford church cuted: if it were, the signatures of the testator, upon each tells us, of the three sheets of paper of which the will consists, bear
“Obiit Anno Domini 1616. evidence (from the want of firmness in the writing) that he was at that time suffering under sickness. It opens, it is
Ætatis 53. die 23 Apr." true, by stating that he was “in perfect health and me. And it is remarkable that he was born and died on the same mory," and such was doubtless the case when the instru- day of the same month, supposing him, as we have every ment was prepared in January, but the execution of it reason to believe, to have first seen the light on the 23d
1 The registration in the books of Stratford church is this:
years had he been otherwise, and we are sure also, that if Drayton "1615-16 Feabruary 10. Tho Queeny tow Judith Shakspere." and Ben Jonson visited him at Stratford, he would give them a free
The fruits of this marriage were three sons; viz. Shakespeare, and hearty welcome. We have no reason to think that Drayton baptized 23rd November, 1616, and buried May 8th, 1617; Richard, was at all given to intoxication, although it is certain that Ben Jonbaptized 9th February, 1617-18, and buried 26th February, 1638-9; son was a bountiful liver. and Thomas, baptized 23rd January, 1619-20, and buried 28th 3 For a copy of this curious and interesting work, we gladly express January, 1638-9. Judith Quiney, their mother, did not die until our obligations to Mr. William Fricker, of Hyde, near Manchester. after the Restoration, and was buried 9th February, 1661-2. The 4 He several times speaks of sicknesses in his own family, and of the Stratford registers contain no entry of the burial of Thomas Quiney, manner in which he had removed them: a case of his own, in which her husband, and it is very possible, therefore, that he died and was he mentions his age, accords with the statement in his inscription, kuried in London.
and ascertains that he was thirty-two when he married Susanna 2 The Rev. John Ward's Diary, to which we have before referred, Shakespeare in 1607. - Mrs. Hall, of Stratford, my wife," is more contains the following undated paragraph :
than once introduced in the course of the volume, as well as " ElizShakespeare, Drayton, and Ben Jonson, had a merie meeting, abeth Hall, my only daughter.” Mrs. Susanna Hall died in 1649, and, itt seems, drank too hard, for Shakespear died of a fevour there aged 66, and was buried at Stratford. Elizabeth Hall, her daughter contracted,"
by Dr. Hall, (baptized on the 21st Feb. 1607-8,) and grand-daughter What credit may be due to this statement, preceded as it is by the to our poet, was married on the 22d April, 1626, to Mr. Thomas Nash, words " it seems," implying a doubt on the subject in the writer's (who died in 1647) and on 5th June, 1649, to Mr. John Bernard, of mind, we must leave the reader to determine. That Shakespeare Abingdon, who was knighted after the Restoration. Lady Bernard was of sober, though of companionable habits, we are thoroughly died childless in 1679, and was buried, not at Stratford with her own convinced : he could not have written seven-and-thirty plays (not family, but at Abingdon with that of her second husband. She was reckoning alterations and additions now lost) in five-and-twenty the last of the lineal descendants of William Shakespeare.
April, 1564. It was most usual about that period to men-married to Thomas Quiney considerably more than a month tion the day of death in inscriptions upon tomb-stones, tab- anterior to the actual date of the will, and although his eldlets, and monuments; and such was the case with other est daughter Susanna is mentioned by her husband's patromembers of the Shakespeare family. We are thus informed nymic. It seems evident, from the tenor of the whole inthat his wife, Anne Shakespeare, “departed this life the 6th strument, that when it was prepared Judith was not marday of Augu. 16237:” Dr. Hall “ deceased Nove. 25. Ao. riedo, although her speedy union with Thomas Quiney was 16352;:Thomas Nash, who married Hall's daughter, “died contemplated: the attorney or scrivener, who drew it, had April 4, A. 16473." Susanna Hall “ deceased the 11th of first written “son and daughter,” (meaning Judith and her July, A'. 16494." Therefore, although the Latin inscription intended husband) but erased the words “son and" afteron the monument of our great dramatist may, from its form wards, as the parties were not yet married, and were not and punctuation, appear not so decisive as those we have “son and daughter" to the testator. It is true that Thomas quoted in English. there is in fact no ground for disputing Quiney would not have been Shakespeare's son, only his
the register of Stratford that he was interred on the 25th that time strictly marked and attended to, and in the same April, and the record of that event is placed among the will Elizabeth Hall is called the testator's “niece," when burials in the following manner:
she was, in fact, his granddaughter,
The bequest which has attracted most attention is an in“ 1616. April 25, Will Shakspere, Gent."
terlineation in the following words, “ Itm I gyve unto my
wief my second best bed with the furniture." Upon this Whether from the frequent prevalence of infectious dis- passage has been founded, by Malone and others, à charge orders, or from any other cause, the custom of keeping the against Shakespeare, that he only remembered his wife as bodies of relatives unburied, for a week or more after death, an afterthought, and then merely gave her "an old bed.” seems comparatively of modern origin; and we may illus- As to the last part of the accusation, it may be answered, trate this point also by reference to facts regarding some of that the “second best bed" was probably that in which the the members of the Shakespeare family. Anne Shake- husband and wife had slept, when he was in Stratford earspeare was buried two days after she died, viz, on the 8th lier in life, and every night since his retirement fiom the Aug., 16236: Dr. Hall and Thomas Nash were buried on the metropolis: the best bed was doubtless reserved for visitors : day after they died; and although it is true that there was if, therefore, he were to leave his wife any express legacy an interval of five days between the death and burial of of the kind, it was most natural and considerate that he Mrs. Hall, in 1649, it is very possible that her corpse was should give her that piece of furniture, which for many years conveyed from some distance, to be interred among her re- they had jointly occupied. With regard to the second part lations at Stratford". Nothing would be easier than to ac- of the charge, our great dramatist has of late years been recumulate instances to prove that in the time of Shakespeare, lieved from the stigma, thus attempted to be thrown upon as well as before and afterwards, the custom was to bury him, by the mere remark, that Shakespeare's property bepersons very shortly subsequent to their decease. In the ing principally freehold, the widow by the ordinary operacase of our poet, concluding that he expired on the 230 tion of the law of England would be entitled to, what is leApril, there was, as in the instance of his wife, an interval gally known by the term, dower.10 It is extraordinary that of two days before his interment.
this explanation should never have occurred to Malone, who Into the particular provisions of his will we need not en- was educated to the legal profession; but that many others ter at all at large, because we have printed it at the end of should have followed him in his unjust imputation is not the present memoir from the original, as it was filed in the remarkable, recollecting how prone most of Shakespeare's Prerogative Courts, probate having been granted on the 22d biographers have been to repeat errors, rather than take the June following the date of it. His daughter Judith is there trouble to inquire for themselves, to sift out truth, and to cnly called by her Christian name, although she had been balance probabilities.
Nove. 25. 2016.cheire of Wiin. Hall, Gent: Hng
1 The inscription., upon a brass plate, let into a stone, is in these
Witty above her sexe, but that's not all; terms:-We have to thank Mr. Bruce for the use of his copies of them,
Wise to salvation was good Mistress Hall. with which we have compared our own.
Something of Shakespeare was in that, but this 56 Heere lyeth interred the Body of Anne, Wife of William Shake
Wholy of him with whom she's now in blisse. speare, who departed this life the 6th day of Augu, 1623. being of the age of 67 yeares.
Then, passenger, hast ne’re a teare
To weepe with her that wept for all ?
That wept, yet set her selfe to cheere
Them up with comforts cordiall.
Her love shall live, her mercy spread,
When thou hast ne're a teare to shed."
The register informs us that she was buried on the 16th July, 1649. Clausa licet tumulo mater, et astra petit." 2 The following is the inscription commemorating him.
5 The following is copied from the register. “Heere lyeth the Body of John Hall, Gent: Hee marr : Susanna
“1623, August 8. Mrs. Shakspeare.” ye daughter and coheire of Will: Shakespeare, Gent. Hee deceased 6 Their registrations of burial are in these terms :Nove. 25. A'. 1635, aged 60.
"1635. Nov. 26. Johannes Hall, medicus peritissimus." Hallius hic situs est, medica celeberrimus arte,
66 1647. Aprill 5. Thomas Nash, Gent."
7 The register contains as follows:-
“1649. July 16. Mrs. Susanna Hall, widow.” Ne tumulo quid desit, adest fidissima conjux,
8 We are indebted to Sir F. Madden, Keeper of the MSS. in the Et vitæ comitem nunc quoq; mortis habet."
British Museum, for the use of a most exact collation of Shakespeare's 3 His inscription, in several places difficult to be deciphered, is
will ; in addition to which we have several times gone over every this:
line and word of it. We have printed it, as nearly as possible as it "Heere resteth ye Body of Thomas Nashe, Esq. He mar. Eliza
appears in the original. beth the daug. and heire of John Halle, Gent. He died Aprill 4.
9 Another trifling circumstance leading to the conclusion that the A. 1647, Aged 53.
will was prepared in January, though not executed until March, is Fata manent omnes hunc non virtute carentem,
that Shakespeare's sister is called Jone Hart, and not Jone Hart, widow. Ut neque divitiis abstulit atra dies;
Her husband had died a few days before Shakespeare, and he was Abstulit, at referet lux ultima : siste, viator,
buried on 17 April, 1616, as "Will Hart, hatter." She was buried Si peritura paras per male parta peris.”
on 4 Nov. 1646. Both entries are contained in the parish registers of 4 The inscription to her runs thus:
Stratford. “Heere lyeth ye body of Susanna, Wife to lohn Hall, Gent: ye 10 This vindication of Shakespeare's memory from the supposed ne. daughter of William Shakespeare, Gent. Shee deceased ye 11th of glect of his wife we owe to Mr. Knight, in his “ Pictorial ShakJuly, A0.1649. aged 66."
spere." See the Postscript to - Twelfth Night." When the explaDugdale has handed down the following verses upon her, which nation is once given, it seems so easy, that we wonder it was never werè originally engraved on the stone, but are not now to be found,
before mentioned; but like many discoveries of different kinds, it is half of it having been cut away to make room for an inscription to not less simple than important, and it is just that Mr. Knight should Richard Watts, who died in 1707.
have full credit for it.
Blest be ye man yt spares thes stones,
And cvrst be he yt moves my bones."
The half-length on the title-page of the folio of 1623, Monument to Shakespeare at Stratford-upon-Avon erected engraved by Martin Droeshout, has certainly an expression
before 1623; probably under the superintendence of Dr. of greater gravity than the bust on Shakespeare's monuHall, and Shakespeare's daughter Susanna. Differencement: and, making some allowances, we can conceive the between the bust on the monument and the portrait on the title-page of the folio of 1623. Ben Jonson's testimony in
original of that resemblance more capable of producing the favour of the likeness of the latter. Shakespeare's personal /
mighty works Shakespeare has left behind him, than the appearance. His social and convivial qualities. “66 Wit-, original of the bust: at all events, the first rather looks like combats " mentioned by Fuller in his " Worthies." Epi- the author of " Lear” and “ Macbeth," and the last like the taphs upon Sir Thomas Stanley and Elias James. Con-author of “Much Ado about Nothing” and “The Merry clusion." Hallam's character of Shakespeare.
Wives of Windsor :" the one may be said to represent
Shakespeare during his later years at Stratford, happy in A MONUMENT to Shakespeare was erected anterior to the the intercourse of his family and friends, and the cheerful publication of the folio edition of his “ Comedies, Histories, companion of his neighbours and townsmen; and the other. and Tragedies" in 1623, because it is thus distinctly men- Shakespeare in London, l'evolving the great works he had tioned by Leonard Digges, in the earliest copy of commen- | written or projected, and with his mind somewhat burdened datory verses prefixed to that volume, which he states shall by the cares of his professional life. The last, therefore, outlive the poet's tomb:
is obviously the likeness which ought to accompany his - 66 when that stone is rent,
plays, and which his “friends and fellows,” Heminge and And time dissolves thy Stratford Monument, Condell, preferred to the head upon the “ Stratford MonuHere we alive shall view thee still."
ment," of the erection of which they must have been aware. This is the most ancient notice of it; but how long before
There is one point in which both the engraving and the 1623 it had been placed in the church of Stratford-upon-bust in a degree concur,--we mean in the length of the Ayon. ve have no means of deciding. It represents the upper lip, although the peculiarity seems exaggerated in the poet sitting under an arch, with a cushion before him, a pen
bust. We have no such testimony in favour of the truth in his right hand, and his left resting upon a sheet of paper:
of the resemblance of the bust' as the engraving, opposite it has been the opinion of the best judges that it was cut by
to which are the following lines, subscribed with the initials an English sculptor, í perhaps Thomas Stanton) and we may
of Ben Jonson, and doubtless from his pen. Let the reader conclude, without much hesitation, that the artist was em-|
| bear in mind that Ben Jonson was not a man who could be ployed by Dr. Hall and his wife, and that the resemblance
hired to commend, and that, taking it for granted he was was as faithful as a bust, not modelled from the life, but sincere in his praise, he had the most unquestionable means probably under living instructions from some picture or of forming a judgment upon the subject of the likeness becast, could be expected to be. Shakespeare is there con
neare is there on tween the living man and the dead representation?. We siderably fuller in the face, than in the engraving on the gay
ving on the give Ben Jonson's testimonial exactly as it stands in the title-page of the folio of 1623, which must have been made folio of 1628, for it afterwards went through vai
been made folio of 1623, for it afterwards went through various literal from a different original. It seems not unlikely that after changes. he separated himself from the business and anxiety of a
6 TO THE READER. professional life, and withdrew to the permanent inhaling
66 This Figure, that thou here seest put, of his native air, he became more robust, and the half
It was for gentle Shakespeare cut; length upon his monument conveys the notion of a cheerful,
Wherein the Grauer bad a strife
With Nature, to out-doo the life : good-tempered, and somewhat jovial man. The expression,
O, could he but haue drawne his wit we apprehend, is less intellectual than it must have been in
As well in brasse, as he hath hit reality, and the forehead, though lofty and expansive, is not
His face; the Print would then surpasse strongly marked with thought: on the whole, it has rather
All, that was euer writ in brasse. a look of gaiety and good humour than of thought and re
But, since he cannot, Reader, looke flection, and the lips are full, and apparently in the act of
Not on his Picture, but his Booke. giving utterance to some amiable pleasantry.
B. I." On a tablet below the bust are placed the following With this evidence before us, we have not hesitated in inscriptions, which we give literally :
having an exact copy of Droeshout's engraving executed " Ivdicio Pylivm, genio Socratern, arte Maronem,
for the present edition of the Works of Skakespeare. It is, Terra tegit, popvlvs mæret, Olympvs habet.
we believe, the first time it has ever been selected for the Stay, Passenger, why goest thov by so fast?
purpose since the appearance of the folio of 1623; and, Read, if thov canst, whom enyiovs Death hath plast although it may not be recommended by the appearance Within this monvment: Shakspeare; with whome of so high a style of art as some other imputed resemQuick natvre dide: whose name doth deck ys Tombe blances, there is certainly not one which has such unFar more then cost; sieth all yt he hath writt
doubted claims to our notice on the grounds of fidélity and Leaves living art bvt page to serve his witt
authenticity. Obiit ano Doi. 1616.
The fact that Droeshout was required to employ his skill Ætatis. 53. die 23 Ap?."
upon a bad picture may tend to confirm our reliance upon On a flat grave stone in front of the monument, and not the likeness: had there been so many pictures of Shakefar from the wall against which it is fixed, we read these speare as some have contended, but as we are far from lines; and Southwell's correspondent (whose letter was believing, Heminge and Condell, when they were seeking printed in 1838, from the original manuscript dated 1693) for an appropriate ornament for the title-page of their folio, informs us, speaking of course from tradition, that they would hardly have chosen one which was an unskilful paintwere written by Shakespeare himself :
ing, if it had not been a striking resemblance. If only half “Good frend, for Iesys sake forbeare
the pictures said, within the last century, to represent To digg the dvst encloased heare:
Shakespeare, were in fact from the life, the poet must have
1 It was originally, like many other monuments of the time, and living, who could have contradicted him, had the praise not been some in Stratford church, coloured after the life, and so it continued deserved. Jonson does not speak of the painter, but of the graver," until Malone, in his mistaken zeal for classical taste and severity, who we are inclined to think did full justice to the picture placed in and forgetting the practice of the period at which the work was pro
his hands. Droeshout was a man of considerable eminence in his duced, had it painted one uniform stone-colour. He thus exposed branch of art, and has left behind him undoubted proofs of his skill himself to much not unmerited ridicule. It was afterwards found some of them so much superior to the head of Shakespeare in the iinpossible to restore the original colours.
folio of 1623, as to lead to the conviction, that the picture from which 2 Besides, we may suppose that Jonson would be careful how he he worked was a very coarse specimen of art. applauded the likeness, when there must have been so many persons
possessed a vast stock of patience, if not a larger share of by the quickness of his wit and invention?." The simile is vanity, when he devoted so much time to sitting to the well chosen, and it came from a writer who seldom said artists of the day; and the player-editors could have found anything illo. Connected with Ben Jonson's solidity and no difficulty in procuring a picture, which had better pre- slowness is a witticism between him and Shakespeare, said tensions to their approval. To us, therefore, the very de- to have passed at a tavern. One of the Ashmolean manufects of the engraving, which accompanies the folio of 1623, scripts (ÎNo. 38) contains the following:are a recommendation, since they serve to show that it was both genuine and faithful. .
" Mr. Ben Johnson and Mr. Wm. Shakespeare being Aubrey is the only authority, beyond the inferences that merrie at a tavern, Mr. Jonson begins this for his epitaph, may be drawn from the portraits, for the personal appearance of Shakespeare; and he sums up our great poet's phy
Here lies Ben Jonson sical and moral endowments in two lines ;--"He was a
Who was once one : handsome well-shaped man, very good company, and of a very ready, and pleasant, and smooth wit.” We have every
he gives it to Mr. Shakespeare to make up, who presently
writt reason to suppose that this is a correct description of his personal appearance, but we are unable to add to it from
That, while he liv’d, was a slow thing, any other source, unless indeed we were to rely upon a few
And now, being dead, is no-thing." equivocal passages in the “Sonnets." Upon this authority it has been supposed by some that he was lame, and cer- . It is certainly not of much value, but there is a great tainly the 37th and 89th Sonnets, without allowing for a difference between the estimate of an extempore joke figurative mode of expression, might be taken to import as at the moment of delivery, and the opinion we may much. If we were to consider the words literally, we form of it long afterwards, when it has been put upon should imagine that some accident had befallen him, which paper, and transmitted to posterity under such names rendered it impossible that he should continue on the stage, as those of Shakespeare and Jonson. The same exand hence we could easily account for his early retirement cuse, if required, may be made for two other pieces of from it. We know that such was the case with one of his unpretending pleasantry between the same parties, which most famous predecessors, Christopher Marlowe, but we we subjoin in a note, because they relate to such men, have no sufficient reason for believing it was the fact as re- and have been handed down to us upon something like gards Shakespeare: he is evidently speaking metaphori- authority. cally in both places, where “lame” and “lameness” occur. Of a different character is a production preserved by
His social qualities, his good temper, bilarity, vivacity, Dugdale, at the end of his Visitation of Salop, in the and what Aubrey calls his very ready, and pleasant, and Heralds' College: it is an epitaph inscribed upon the tomb smooth wit," (in our author's own words,“ pleasant without of Sir Thomas Stanley, in Tongue church ; and Dugdale, scurrility, witty without affectation,”) cannot be doubted, whose testimony is unimpeachable, distinctly states that since, besides what may be gathered from his works, we “ the following verses were made by William Shakespeare, have it from various quarters; and although nothing very the late famous tragedian." good of this kind may have descended to us, we have sufficient to show that he must have been a most welcome “ Written upon the east end of the tomb. visitor in all companies. The epithet “gentle” has been 16 Ask who lies bere, but do not weep;. frequently applied to him, twice by Ben Jonson, (in his He is not dead, he doth but sleep. lines before the engraving, and in his laudatory verses pre This stony register is for his bones; fixed to the plays in the folio of 1623) and if it be not to be His fame is more perpetual than these stones : understood precisely in its modern acceptation, we may be
And his own goodness, with himself being gone, sure that one distinguishing feature in his character was gen
Shall live when earthly monument is none. eral kindliness: he may have been “ sharp and sententious," but never needlessly bitter or ill-natured: his wit had no
“ Written on the west end thereof. malice for an ingredient. Fuller speaks of the “wit-combats”
“Not monumental stone preserves our fame,
Nor sky-aspiring pyramids our name. between Shakespeare and Ben Jonson at the convivial
The memory of hin for whon this stands meetings at the Mermaid club, established by Sir Walter
Shall out-live marble and defacers' hands. Raleigh”; and he adds, “ which two I behold like a Spanish When all to time's consumption shall be given, great galleon and an English man-of-war: Master Jonson, Stanley, for whom this stands, shall stand in heaven." like the former, was built far higher in learning; solid, but slow in his performances : Shakespeare, with the English With Malone and others, who have quoted them, we man-of-war, lesser in bulk, but lighter in sailing, could turn feel satisfied of the authenticity of these verses, though we with all tides, tack about, and take advantage of all winds may not perhaps think, as he did, that the last line bears
1 See the extract from a ballad on Marlowe (p. xxxi.). This cir- pointed and smooth even as they are taken out of the earth, so nature cumstance, had he known it, would materially have aided the mo itself was all the art which was used upon him." Of course Fuller dern sceptick, who argued that Shakespeare and Marlowe were one
is here only referring to Shakespeare's classical acquirements: his and the same.
- learning" of a different kind, perhaps, exceeded that of all the 2 Gifford (Ben Jonson's Works, vol. I. p. lxv.) fixes the date of the ancients put together. establishment of this club, at the Mermaid in Friday Street, about
5 " Shakespeare was god-father to one of Ben Jonson's children, 1603, and he adds that "here for many years Ben Jonson repaired and after the christening, being in a deepe study, Jonson came to with Shakespeare, Beaumont, Fletcher, Selden, Cotton, Carew, Mar- cheere_him up, and askt him why he was so melancholy ? - No. tin, Donne, and many others, whose names, even at this distant
faith, Ben, (sayes he) not I; but I have been considering a great period, call up a mingled feeling of reverence and respect." Of what while what should be the fittest gift for me to bestow upon my god. passed at these many assemblies Beaumont thus speaks, addressing
child, and I have resolv'd at last.'-I pr’ythee what?' says he. Ben Jonson :
• I 'faith, Ben, I'll e'en give him a douzen of Latten spoones, and
thou shalt translate them." "What things have we seen
Of course the joke depends upon the pun between Latin, and the Done at the Mermaid! heard words that have been
mixed metal called latten. The above is from a MS. of Sir R. So nimble, and so full of subtle flame,
L'Estrange, who quotes the authority of Dr. Donne. It is inserted in As if that every one from whom they came
Mr. Thoms's amusing, volume, printed for the Camden Society, Had meant to put his whole wit in a jest."
under the title of " Anecdotes and Traditions." p. 2. The next is
from a MS. called “Poetical Characteristics," formerly in the HarThe Mitre, in Fleet Street, seems to have been another tavern where
leian Collection :the wits and poets of the day hilariously assembled. 3 Worthies. Part iii. p. 126, folio edit.
Il Verses by Ben Jonson and Shakespeare, occasioned by the motto 4 Fuller has another simile, on the same page, respecting Shake-to the Globe theatre- Totus mundus agit histrionem. speare and his acquirements, which is worth quoting. “He was an “ Jonson. If but stage-actors all the world displays, eminent instance of the truth of that rule, Poeta non fit, sed nascitur;
Where shall we find spectators of their plays ? one is not made, but born a poet. Indeed his learning was very little, “ Shakespeare. Little, or much of what we see, we do:
We are both actors and spectators too."