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his encounter with the Prince of Wales ;—their own bodies are to be dashed together, and not merely the horses :
Harry to Harry shall, not horse to horse:
so closely does he intend that their combat shall hug.
IMOGEN IN BED.
(Jachimo, dared by Imogen's husband to make trial of her fidelity,
hides in her chamber in order to bring away pretended proofs
Imo. I have read three hours then : mine eyes are weak :
[Sleeps. JACHIMO, from the trunk. Jach. The crickets sing, and man's o'er-labour'd sense Repairs itself by rest: our Tarquin thus
Did softly press the rushes, ere he waken'd
[Takes off her bracelet.
To the trunk again, and shut the spring of it.
[Clock strikes. One, two, three,-Time, time!
[Goes into the trunk. The scene closes.
BORN, 1574,- DIED, 1637.
IF Ben Jonson had not tried to do half what he did, he would have had a greater fame. His will and ambition hurt him, as they always hurt genius when set in front of it. Lasting reputation of power is only to be obtained by power itself; and this, in poetry, is the result not so much, if at all, of the love of the power, as of the power of love,- the love of truth and beauty,—great and potent things they,—not the love of self, which is generally a very little thing. The "supposed rugged old bard,” notwithstanding his huffing and arrogance, had elegance, feeling, imagination, great fancy; but by straining to make them all greater than they were, bringing in the ancients to help him, and aiming to include the lowest farce (perhaps by way of outdoing the universality of Shakspeare), he became as gross in his pretensions, as drink had made him in person. His jealous irritability and assumption
tired out the gentlest and most generous of his con-
Twelfth Night and other plays of Shakspeare preceded and surpassed him in his boasted - humour;" but his Alchemist, and especially his Volpone, seem to me at the head of all severer English comedy. The latter is a masterpiece of plot and treatment. Ben's fancy, a power tending also rather to the comic than tragic, was in far greater measure than his imagination; and their strongest united efforts, as in the Witches' Meeting, and the luxurious anticipations of Sir Epicure Mammon, produce a smiling as well as a serious admiration. The three happiest of all his short effusions (two of which are in this volume) are the epitaph on Lady Pembroke, the address to Cynthia (both of which are serious indeed, but not tragic), and the