« AnteriorContinuar »
INDUCTION TO THE COMPLAINT OF
HENRY DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM. The wrathful Winter, 'proaching on apace, With blust'ring blasts had all ybared the treen, And old Saturnus, with his frosty face, With chilling cold had pierc'd the tender green ; The mantles rent wherein enwrapped been The gladsome groves that now lay overthrown, The tapets torn, and every tree down blown.
The soil that erst so seemly was to seen,
Hawthorn had lost his motley livery,
And sorrowing I to see the Summer flowers,
The fields so fade that flourished so beforne ;
Then looking upward to the Heaven's leams,
That musing on this worldly wealth in thought,
GASCOIGNE, an English poet of some celebrity, was descend.
ed of a gentleman's family of Essex. He was educated at both universities, and entered at Gray's Inn ; but left legal studies for arms, on being disinherited by his father
for youthful extravagance. He distinguished himself at the siege of Middleburgh, and was rewarded by the Prince of Orange with 300 guilders besides his pay, a sensible intelligible mode of rewarding bravery, at which the officers of those days were not too refined to take of. fence. Gascoigne, who afterwards contrived to follow the court on one of Elizabeth's royal progresses, is the author of the well-known “ Princely Pleasures of Kenelworth.” He was no favourite among his contemporaries; but succeeding ages have done him justice. He is mentioned with praise by Dr Percy; and Warton says he exceeded all the poets of his age in smoothness and harmony of versification. In the latter part of the reign of Elizabeth, and in the reign of her successor, dramatic productions sprung up in England like mushrooms. Of the prolific dramatists Gascoigne was among the first. Of his latter years nothing is distinctly known.
OF lusty youth then lustily to treat,
THE LULLABY OF A LOVER. Sing lullaby, as women do,
Wherewith they bring their babes to rest ;
And lullaby can I sing too,
As womanly as can the best. With lullaby they still the child ; And, if I be not much beguild, Full many wanton babes have I, Which must be still’d with lullaby.
First lullaby my youthful years :
It is now time to go to bed : For crooked age, and hoary hairs,
Have won the haven with my head. With lullaby then, youth, be still, With lullaby content thy will ; Since courage quails, and comes behind, Go sleep, and so beguile thy mind.
Next, lullaby my gazing eyes,
Which wonted were to glance apace ; For ev'ry glass may now suffice,
To shew the furrows in my face. With lullaby then wink awhile ; With lullaby your looks beguile ; Let no fair face, nor beauty bright, Entice you efte with vain delight.
And lullaby, my wanton will,
Let reason's rule now rein thy thought, Since all too late 1 find by skill,
How dear I have thy fancies bought ; With lullaby now take thine ease, With lullaby thy doubts appease ; For, trust to this, if thou be still, My body shall obey thy will.
Thus lullaby my youth, mine eyes,
My will, my ware, and all that was ;
But, welcome pain, let pleasure pass.
BORN ABOUT 1550—DIED ABOUT 1603.
This person, who wrote several tolerable plays, and some
sprightly songs and other short pieces, is remarkable for the introduction of that bombastic jargon which, under the name of Euphuism, became fashionable at the court of Elizabeth. This masquerade of language, and disguise of pure nonsense, was as violently patronised by the ladies of the Virgin Court as other absurdities, as great, if not quite so barefaced, have been since. It is probable that the threefold allegories of Spenser, and the Arcadian scenes and courtly shepherds of Sydney had given the public taste a predisposition to this sophisticated poetical slang, though Sydney was its declared enemy. That grown men and women, with reasonable, and, above all, with risible faculties, should, with faces unmasked, have been able seriously to address each other in the language, tropes, and metaphors of Euphuism, is incomprehensible. Had the initiated been able to keep this jargon to themselves, it might have flourished much longer ; for all exclusive societies like and foster the mystery which