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Lord, I confess, too, when I dine
The pulse is thine,
There placed by Thee.
And my content
To be more sweet.
With guiltless mirth;
Spiced to the brink.
That soils my land;
Her egg each day;
Me twins each year;
Run cream for wine:
Me, to this end:
A thankful heart,
As wholly thine:
My Christ, by Thee.
TEMPTATIONS. Temptations hurt not, though they have access; Satan o'ercomes none but by willingness.
HONOURS AND HINDRANCES.
Stiles, and stops, and stays, that come
(1597?-16—.) Amongst the names of men whose genius has been blighted by misfortune, and whose efforts after noblest thought have been baffled and tortured by circumstance, there are few more calculated to inspire a pity which is almost remorse-if it be possible for one generation to inherit the shame of an unappreciating neglect with which an ancestral one was more directly chargeablethan that which heads this brief notice. The place and the date alike of the birth and of the death of John Hagthorpe are unknown, and for his "ancient and not ignoble name” we have been unable, after considerable search, to trace any territorial connection. Nearly all that is ascertained of his personal history is to be gathered from the dedications quoted below, and from the incidental information, given by himself, that he wrote the poem
“Art and Nature” whilst he lived “in the old castle of Scarborough, standing upon a most high rock almost surrounded by the sea.” Perhaps from the iteration in his Discourse, page 34, “I did live sometimes upon the sea-coast in the town and castle of Scarborough,” it should be inferred that this season was the one in a gloomy life upon which the shadows fell most lightly. A small volume of “Divine Meditations and Elegies,” published in 1622, has the following dedication :
“To the High Mighty Prince James, by the grace of God King of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, John Hagthorpe, in all humble duty and zealous affection, wisheth all health and prosperity in this world, and eternal happiness in the world to come.
“Pardon, mighty Prince, my boldness, thus presuming into your presence with so lame an oblation. Having a Suit to your Majesty (which is not for money, but a few good words), and having no friend in court, I thought a Petition might miscarry, and this therefore the safer kind of begging, to make Truth speak for herself. Whereas thereto I am much impoverished through Suits of Law wherein I have been ten years forbidden from mine own by the malice of a stronger adversary and many other bad debtors, who, by their ill dealing, compel me to transport myself and family into Virginia, or New England;
; my Suit is, that your Gracious Majesty would be pleased to speak a good word for me, that I may obtain the benefit of Master Sutton's Charity for a little son of mine, whom I would gladly leave behind me to increase an ancient (and not ignoble) name again in your Majesty's dominions, wherein there is not a man living of that name beside myself and mine. For which your gracious clemency, I shall not fail daily to pray for
your Majesty's health and prosperity in this world, and eternal happiness in the world to come. Your Majesty's most humble and obedient subject, John Hagthorpe.”
That this petition did not obtain for him the succour so plaintively implored, may be gathered from the renewal of his suit in a dedication to Charles, then Prince of Wales, of his “ Visiones Rerum: the Visions of Things,” published in the year 1623. In this dedication, Hagthorpe calls himself “the least and most unfortunate of all men, wrapt up, through infinite calamities, in Cim.
merian night of unknown obscurities;" and proceeds:"Having of late presented your royal father with a small book of meditations, and a suit; so renewing the said suit, I make bold now again to present your grace with these most rude and most unpolished lines, but honest matter, and not unfit for your contemplation, which my poor muse, having wandered round the world to gather, lays down át length at your princely feet.”
In 1625, Hagthorpe turned his experience of the colonies to literary account in a quarto volume, entitled
England's Exchequer; or, a Discourse of the Sea and Navigation, with some things therein coincident concerning plantations."
In 1817, the poetical works of Hagthorpe experienced a partial resurrection, Sir Egerton Brydges having published from the Lee Priory press, “Hagthorpe Revived; or, Select Specimens of a Forgotten Poet.” “The effusions of Hagthorpe,” says this generous editor, “have a polished elegance; they are harmonious, plaintive, and have all the vivid colouring and breadth of a poetical vein. All the stanzas of the lyric ‘To Earth’ are delicate, beautiful, and touching, both in sentiment and expression; nor is the address To Death,' or that 'To Time,' less attractive and praiseworthy."
Earth, thou art a barren field
Of delight and true contending;
Are the fires,
Riches, honour, dignity
Are the highway to misfortune;
To be fair
Sorrow to themselves returneth;
Yet do men
That us would environ;
Yet their loss
Is a cross,
Is to know our indiscretions;
For we dwell
As in hell,
With loved sorrow still to languish ?
Where new fears
TO DEATH. Then, Death, why shouldst thou dreaded be, And shunned as some great misery;