Page images
[blocks in formation]

As to be heard where car is none,
As lead to grave 4 in marble stone,
My song may pierce her heart as soon.
Should we then sigh, or sing, or moan?
No, no, my lute, for I have done.

The rocks do not so cruelly
Repulse the waves continually,
As she my suit and affection;
So that I am past remedy,
Whereby my lute and I have done.


[blocks in formation]

WRITTEN TO JOHN POINS My mother's maids, when they did sew and

spin, They sang sometime a song of the field mouse That, for because her livelihood was but thin, Would needs go seek her townish sister's

house. She thought herself endurèd too much pain; The stormy blasts her cave so sore did souse That when the furrows swimmed with the

rain, She must lie cold and wet in sorry plight; And worse than that, bare meat there did

remain To comfort her when she her house had

dight; Sometime a barly corn ; sometime a bean, For which she laboured hard both day and

night In harvest time whilst she might go and glean; And where store I was stroyed ? with the flood, Then welaway! for she undone was clean. Then was she fain to take instead of food Sleep, if she might, her hunger to beguile.



[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]


“My sister," quoth she, “hath a living Feard of her life. At home she wished her good,

tho, And hence from me she dwelleth not a mile. And to the door, alas ! as she did skip, In cold and storm she lieth warm and dry 20 The Heaven it would, lo ! and eke her chance In bed of down, the dirt doth not detile

was so, Her tender foot, she laboureth not as I. At the threshold her silly foot did trip; Richly she feedeth and at the richman's cost, And ere she might recover it again, And for her meat she needs not crave nor cry. The traitor cat had caught her by the hip, By sea, by land, of the delicates, the most And made her there against her will remain, Her cater 1 seeks and spareth for no peril, That had forgotten her poor surety and rest She feedeth on boiled bacon, meat and roast, For seeming wealth wherein she thought to And hath thereof neither charge nor travail ; reign. And when she list, the liquor of the grape Alas, my Poines, how men do seek the best 70 Doth glad her heart till that her belly swell." And find the worst by error as they stray! And at this journey she maketh but a And no marvel; when sight is so oppressed, jape ; ?

36 And blind the guide, anon out of the way So forth she goeth, trusting of all this wealth Goeth guide and all in seeking quiet life. With her sister her part so for to shape, O wretched minds, there is no gold that may That if she might keep herself in health, Grant that ye seek; no war; no peace; no To live a lady while her life doth last.

strife. And to the door now is she come by stealth, No, no, although thy head were hooped with And with her foot anon she scrapeth full fast. gold, Th' other for fear durst not well scarce ap- Sergeant with mace, halberd, sword nor knife, pear,

Cannot repulse the care that follow should. Of every noise so was the wretch aghast. Each kind of life hath with him his disease. At last she asked softly who was there, 40 Live in delight even as thy lust would,? And in her language as well as she could. And thou shalt find, when lust doth most “Peep!” quoth the other sister, “I am thee please, here."

It irketh straight, and by itself doth fade. “Peace," quoth the town mouse, “why A small thing it is that may thy mind appease. speakest thou so loud?”

None of ye all there is that is so mad And by the hand she took her fair and well. To seek grapes upon brambles or briars; “Welcome,” quoth she, "my sister, by the Nor none, I trow, that hath his wit so bad Rood!”

To set his hay 3 for conies 4 over rivers, She feasted her, that joy it was to tell Nor ye set not a drag net for an hare; The fare they had; they drank the wine so And yet the thing that most is your desire 90 clear,

Ye do mistake with more travail and care. And as to purpose now and then it fell, Make plain thine heart, that it be not knotted She cheeréd her with “Ho, sister, what With hope or dread, and see thy will be bare cheer!”

From all effects whom vice hath ever spotted. Amid this joy befell a sorry chance, 50 Thyself content with that is thee assigned, That, welaway! the stranger bought full dear And use it well that is to thee allotted. The fare she had, for, as she looks askance, Then seek no more out of thyself to find Under a stool she spied two steaming eyes The thing that thou hast sought so long beIn a round head with sharp ears. In France

fore, Was never mouse so fear'd, for, though un- For thou shalt feel it sitting in thy mind. wise

Mad, if ye list to continue your sore, Had not i-seen such a beast before,

Let present pass and gape on time to come, Yet had nature taught her after her guise And dip yourself in travail more and more. To know her foe and dread him evermore. Henceforth, my Poines, this shall be all The towney mouse fled, she knew whither to

and some, go;

These wretched fools shall have nought else of Th' other had no shift, but wanders sore 60

me; caterer ? jest 3 gleaming manner, way

2 desire, wish






1 then



For my lord's guilt thus faultless bide I pains. Yet from my lord shall not my foot remove; Sweet is his death that takes his end by love.

[blocks in formation]


LOVE GERALDINE From Tuscan came my lady's worthy race; Fair Florence was sometime her ancient seat; The Western isle whose pleasant shore doth

face Wild Camber's cliffs did give her lively heat; Fostered she was with milk of Irish breast; Her sire, an earl; her dame, of princes'

blood; From tender years in Britain she doth rest, With a king's child, where she tasteth costly

food; Hunsdon did first present her to mine eyes; Bright is her hue, and Geraldine she hight; 1 Hampton me taught to wish her first for

mine; And Windsor, alas, doth chase me from her

sight: Her beauty of kind,her virtues from above. Happy is he, that can obtain her love!






The soote 1 season that bud and bloom forth

brings With green hath clad the hill and eke the vale; The nightingale with feathers new she sings; The turtle 2 to her make 3 hath told her tale: Summer is come, for every spray now springs; The hart hath hung his old head 4 on the

pale : 5 The buck in brake his winter cote he flings; The fishes flete 6 with new repaired scale; The adder all her slough away she slings; The swift swallow pursueth the flies smale;10 The busy bee her honey now she mings.? Winter is worn, that was the flowers' bale: 8 And thus I see among these pleasant things Each care decays, and yet my sorrow springs! COMPLAINT OF A LOVER REBUKED


Martial, the things that do attain
The happy life be these, I find :
The riches left, not got with pain;
The fruitful ground; the quiet mind;
The egall 4 friend; no grudge, no strife;
No charge of rule, no governance;
Without disease, the healthful life;
The household of continuance;
The mean - diet, no delicate fare;
True wisdom joined with simpleness;
The night discharged of all care,
Where wine the wit may not oppress;
The faithful wife, without debate;
Such sleeps as may beguile the night:
Contented with thine own estate,
Ne wish for death, ne fear his might.


Love, that liveth and reigneth in my thought,
That built his seat within my captive breast,
Clad in the arms wherein with me he fought,
Oft in my face he doth his banner rest.
She that me taught to love and suffer pain,
My doubtful hope and eke my hot desire
With shamefast cloak to shadow and refrain,
Her smiling grace converteth straight to ire.
The coward Love then to the heart apace
Taketh his flight, whereas he lurks and

plains, His purpose lost, and dare not show his face.




They whisted 6 all, with fixed face attent,
When Prince Eneas from the royal seat

1 is named ? from nature 3 inherited 4 equal moderate became silent

[blocks in formation]


Willed it to drown, or underset with flame, 50
The suspect present of the Greek's deceit,
Or bore and gauge the hollow caves uncouth;
So diverse ran the giddy people's mind.

Lo! foremost of a route that followed him,
Kindled ? Laöcoön hasted from the tower,
Crying far off : 0) wretched citizens,
What so great kind of frenzy freteth you?
Deem ye the Greeks, our enemies, to be gone?
Or any Greekish gifts can you suppose
Devoid of guile? Is so Ulysses known? 60
Either the Greeks are in this timber hid,
Or this an engine is to annoy 2 our walls,
To view our towers, and overwhelm our town.
Here lurks some craft. Good Troyans give

no trust Unto this horse, for, whatsoever it be, I dread the Greeks, yea when they offer gifts.'”

[blocks in formation]


[blocks in formation]

Thus 'gan to speak: “O Queen, it is thy will
I should renew a woe cannot be told;
How that the Greeks did spoil and overthrow
The Phrygian wealth and wailfull realm of

Those ruthful things that I myself beheld,
And whereof no small part fell to my share;
Which to express, who could refrain from

tears? What Myrmidon? or yet what Dolopes? 10 What stern Ulysses' wagèd soldier? And lo! moist night now from the welkin

falls, And stars declining counsel us to rest; But since so great is thy delight to hear Of our mishaps and Troyës last decay, Though to record the same my mind abhors And plaint eschews, yet thus will I begin : The Greekës chieftains, all irked with the war, Wherein they wasted had so many years, And oft repulsed by fatal destiny, A huge horse made, high raised like a hill, By the divine science of Minerva, Of cloven fir compacted were his ribs, For their return a feignèd sacrifice, The fame whereof so wandered it at point.? In the dark bulk they closed bodies of men Chosen by lot, and did enstuff by stealth The hollow womb with armed soldiers.

There stands in sight an isle hight Tenedon, Rich and of fame while Priam's kingdom stood, Now but a bay and road unsure for ship. Hither them secretly the Greeks withdrew, Shrouding themselves under the desert shore; And, weening we they had been fled and gone, And with that wind had fet 3 the land of Greece, Troy discharged her long continued dole. The gates cast up, we issued out to play, The Greekish camp desirous to behold, The places void and the forsaken coasts. Here Pyrrhus' band, there fierce Achilles

pight; Here rode their ships, there did their battles

join. Astonied some the scathful 6 gift beheld, 42 Behight' by vow unto the chaste Minerve, All wondering at the hugeness of the horse. And first of all Timætes gan advise Within the walls to lead and draw the same, And place it eke amid the palace court, Whether of guile, or Troyës fate it would. Capys, with some of judgment more discreet,





If your scholer do misse sometimes, in marking rightlie these foresaid sixe thinges, chide not hastelie: for that shall, both dull his witte, and discorage his diligence: but monish him gentelie: which shall make him, both willing to amende, and glad to go forward in love and hope of learning. I have now wished, twise or thrise, this gentle nature, to be in a Scholemaster: And, that I have done so, neither by chance, nor without some reason, I will now declare at large, why, in mine opinion, love is fitter then feare, gentlenes better than beating, to bring up a childe rightlie in learninge.

With the common use of teaching and beating in common scholes of England, I will not greatlie contend: which if I did, it were but a small grammaticall controversie, neither belonging to heresie nor treason, nor greatly touching God nor the Prince: although in very deede, in the end, the good or ill bringing up of children, doth as much serve to the good or ill service, of God, our Prince, and our whole countrie, as any one thing doth beside.


[blocks in formation]

1 excited ? injure 3 This is a proverbial expression.


I do gladlie agree with all good Scholemasters in these pointes: to have children brought to a good perfitnes in learning: to all honestie in maners: to have all fautes rightlie amended: to have everie vice severelie corrected: but for the order and waie that leadeth rightlie to these pointes, we somewhat differ. For commonlie, many scholemasters, some, as I have seen, moe, as I have heard tell, be of so crooked a nature, as, when they meete with a hard witted scholer, they rather breake him than bowe him, rather marre him then mend him. For whan the scholemaster is angrie with some other matter, then will he sonest faul to beate his scholer: and though he him selfe should be punished for his folie, yet must he beate some scholer for his pleasure: though ere be no cause for him to do so, nor yet fault in the scholer to deserve so. These, ye will say, be fond 3 scholemasters, and fewe they be that be found to be soch. They be fond in deede, but surelie overmany soch be found everie where. But this will I say, that even the wisest of your great beaters, do as oft punishe nature as they do correcte faultes. Yea, many times, the better nature is sorer punished: For, if one, by quicknes of witte, take his lesson readelie, an other, by hardnes of witte, taketh it not so speedelie: the first is alwaies commended, the other is commonlie punished: whan a wise scholemaster should rather discretelie consider the right disposition of both their natures, and not so moch wey 4 what either of them is able to do now, as what either of them is likelie to do hereafter. For this I know, not onelie by reading of bookes in my studie, but also by experience of life, abrode in the world, that those which be commonlie the wisest, the best learned, and best men also, when they be olde, were never commonlie the quickest of witte, when they were yonge. The causes why, amongst other, which be many, that move me thus to thinke, be these fewe, which I will recken. Quicke wittes, commonlie, be apte to take, unapte to keepe: soone hote and desirous of this and that: as colde and sone wery of the same againe: more quicke to enter spedelie, than hable 5 to pearse 6 farre: even like over sharpe tooles, whose edges be verie soone turned. Soch wittes delite them selves in easie and pleasant studies, and never passe farre forward in hie and hard sciences. And

therefore the quickest wittes commonlie may prove the best Poetes, but not the wisest Orators: readie of tonge to speake boldlie, not deepe of judgement, either for good counsel or wise writing. Also, for maners and lise, quicke wittes, commonlie, be, in desire, newfangle, in purpose unconstant, light to promise any thing, readie to forget every thing: both benefite and injurie: and thereby neither fast to frend, nor fearefull to foe: inquisitive of every trifle, not secret in greatest affaires : bolde, with any person : busie, in every matter: sothing ? soch as be present: nipping any that is absent: of nature also, alwaies, flattering their betters, envying their equals, despising their inferiors: and, by quicknes of witte, verie quicke and readie, to like none so well as them selves.

Moreover commonlie, men, very quicke of witte, be also, verie light of conditions : 3 and thereby, very readie of disposition, to be caried over quicklie, by any light cumpanie to any riot and unthriftiness, when they be yonge: and therfore seldome, either honest of life, or riche in living, when they be olde. For, quicke in witte and light in maners, be, either seldome troubled, or verie sone wery, in carying a verie hevie purse. Quicke wittes also be, in most part of all their doinges, overquicke, hastie, rashe, headie, and brainsicke. These two last wordes, Headie, and Brainsicke, be fitte and proper wordes, rising naturallie of the matter, and tearmed aptlie by the condition, of over moch quickenes of witte. In yougthe also they be readie scoffers, privie mockers, and ever over light and mery. In aige, sone testie, very waspishe, and alwaies over miserable: and yet fewe of them cum to any great aige, by reason of their misordered life when they were yong: but

great deale fewer of them cum to shewe any great countenance, or beare any great authoritie abrode in the world, but either live obscurelie, men know not how, or dye obscurelie, men marke not whan. They be like trees, that shewe forth faire blossoms and broad leaves in spring time, but bring out small and not long lasting fruite in harvest time: and that, onelie soch as fall and rotte before they be ripe, and so, never, or seldome, cum to any good at all. For this ye shall finde most true by experience, that amongest a number of quicke wittes in youthe, fewe be found, in the end, either verie fortu

I faults 2


foolish 4 weigh 5 able pierce

1 fond of novelty 2 agreeing with 3 character

« PreviousContinue »