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LXXXIV. TO LUCY, COUNTESS OF BEDFORD. Madam, I told you late how I repented,

I asked a lord a buck, and he denied me; And, ere I could ask you, I was prevented,

For your most noble offer had supplied me. Straight went I home; and there, most like a poet,

I fancied to myself what wine, what wit

I would have spent; how every Muse should know it,

And Phoebus' self should be at eating it. O Madam, if your grant did thus transfer me, Make it your gift! 53 See whither that will

bear me.

LXXXV. TO SIR HENRY GOODYERE.5+ Goodyere, I'm glad and grateful to report Myself a witness of thy few days' sport: Where I both learned why wise men hawking follow,

53 She had probably offered him a warrant for one: the object of the epigram seems to be that it should be sent home to him. — G.

54 A gentleman of fortune who resided at Polesworth, in Warwickshire, and who is frequently alluded to in the literary history of the time from his extensive intercourse with men of letters. He was the intimate associate of Donne. Jonson justly compliments him in the succeeding epigram, one of the happiest in the collection, on his choice of friends and books. Sir Henry Goodyere, however, did not cultivate literature with much success himself. - B.

And why that bird was sacred to Apollo;
She doth instruct men by her gallant flight,
That they to knowledge so should tower upright,
And never stoop but to strike ignorance;
Which if they miss, they yet should readvance
To former height, and there in circle tarry,
Till they be sure to make the fool their quarry.
Now, in whose pleasures I have this discerned,
What would his serious actions me have learned?


When I would know thee, Goodyere, my thought looks

Upon thy well-made choice of friends and books;
Then do I love thee, and behold thy ends
In making thy friends books, and thy books

Now, I must give thy life and deed the voice
Attending such a study, such a choice;

Where, though 't be love that to thy praise doth


It was a knowledge that begat that love.


Touched with the sin of false play, in his punk, Hazard a month forswore his; and grew drunk Each night to drown his cares; but when the gain Of what she'd wrought came in, and waked his


Upon th' accompt, hers grew the quicker trade; Since when, he's sober again, and all play's made.


Would you believe, when you this Monsieur see, That his whole body should speak French, not he? That so much scarf of France, and hat, and feather, And shoe, and tie, and garter should come hither, And land on one whose face durst never be Toward the sea, farther than half-way tree? 55 That he, untravelled, should be French so much, As Frenchmen in his company should seem Dutch?

Or had his father, when he did him get,

The French disease, with which he labors yet? Or hung some Monsieur's picture on the wall, By which his dam conceived him, clothes and all? Or is it some French statue? No; 't doth move, And stoop, and cringe. O then, it needs must


The new French tailor's motion, monthly made, Daily to turn in Paul's, and help the trade.


If Rome so great, and in her wisest age,
Feared not to boast the glories of her stage,

55 In the way to Dover, in the poet's time 'tis probable some remarkable tree might be standing in the road about half-way thither. - W.

56 The connection of Allen's name (usually spelt Alleyn, but now printed Allen) with the munificent endowment of Dulwich College has eclipsed his reputation as an actor; but, independently of this high encomium by Jonson, ample evidence has been traced not only of the influential position he


As skilful Roscius, and grave Æsop, men,
Yet crowned with honors, as with riches then;
Who had no less a trumpet of their name
Than Cicero, whose every breath was fame;
How can so great example die in me,
That, Allen, I should pause to publish thee?
Who both their graces in thyself hast more

held in relation to the stage, but of his great skill as a player. He appears to have been the chief manager of the business of the company for Henslowe, with whom he was part proprietor of the Fortune, and to whose step-daughter he was married. He negotiated with authors, and made engagements with actors, for which he was better qualified in some respects than Henslowe, who, although an excellent man of business, was illiterate. There is reason to believe, also, from certain entries in Henslowe's diary, that be sometimes helped to reconstruct, or adapt, pieces for the stage. As an actor he certainly stood in the first rank, and his special merits in particular parts are testified by Nash, Dekker, and Heywood. All the particulars of his life that are now likely to be recovered have been collected by Mr. Collier in the Memoir of him, and in the Alleyn Papers, published by the Shakespeare Society. - B.

57 Gifford remarks on the instinct for right words which Jonson had, as illustrated by his translation of doctus, as applied to Roscius in Horace's line:-

"Quæ gravis Esopus, quæ doctus Roscius egit."

"Hurd has two or three pages of vapid pomposity to prove that doctus, applied by Horace to Roscius, ought to be translated skilful and not learned. Jonson, who had ten times Hurd's learning, without a tithe of his pedantry, had done it in one word." One is constantly remarking the easy appearance of Jonson's learning. It made a part of the fibre of his mind, and disclosed itself whenever the subject naturally drew it forth.

Outstripped, than they did all that went before;
And present worth in all dost so contract,
As others speak, but only thou dost act.
Wear this renown. 'Tis just, that who did give
So many poets life, by one should live.


When Mill first came to court, the unprofiting fool,

Unworthy such a mistress, such a school,
Was dull, and long ere she would go to man;
At last, ease, appetite, and example won
The nicer thing to taste her lady's page;
And, finding good security in his age,

Went on; and proving him still, day by day,
Discerned no difference of his years or play.
Not though that hair grew brown, which once
was amber,

And he grown youth, was called to his lady's chamber,

Still Mill continued: nay, his face growing


And he removed to gent'man of the horse,

Mill was the same.

Since, both his body and


Blown up; and he (too unwieldy for that place)
Hath got the steward's chair; he will not tarry
Longer a day, but with his Mill will marry.
And it is hoped, that she, like Milo, wull
First bearing him a calf, bear him a bull.

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