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Here on this Figure Cast a Glance,
But so as if it were by Chance,
Your eyes not fixed, they must not stay,
Since this like Shadows to the Day
It only represent's; for Still,
Her Beuty's found beyond the Skill
Of the best Painter, to Embrace,
Those lovely Lines within her face,
View her Soul's Picture, Judgment, wit,
Then read those Lines which She hath wrote,
By Phancy's Pencil drawn alone
Which Piece but She, Can justly own.
Being several Feigned Stories, Comical, Tragical, Tragi-comical, Poetical,
Romancical, Philosophical, Historical, and Moral: Some in Verse, some in Prose;
some Mixed, and some by Dialogues.
Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and most Excellent Princess, THE
The Second Edition.
LONDON, Printed by A. Maxwell, in the Year 1671.
YOU, Various Readers, various Judgments give;
And think, Books are condemned, or ought to live,
According to your Censures, bad or good,
Before you read them, or they're understood:
Laying Aspersions with a jeering brand.
But read these first; and, if you understand
What's to be liked, you'll like what here is writ;
Else you will forfeit your Judgment and Wit.
For your own sakes, dislike not these Books then,
Have mercy on your selves, you censuring Men:
For when you're dead, with all your envious looks,
These Writings will out-live all other Books.
O, but a Woman writes them! She does strive
To entrench too much on Man's Prerogative.
Then that's the Crime, that her Fame pulls yours down.
If you be Scholars, she's too of the Gown;
Therefore be civil to her: think it fit
She should not be condemned cause she's a Wit.
If you be Soldiers, Ladies you'll defend,
And your sheathed Arguments, when drawn, will end
The small Male-Gossipings. But, Gallants, pray
Be not ye Factious, though your Mistress say,
The Books are nought; but do you talk with those,
Of Ribbans, Point de Gen's, and curious Clothes,
Their better reading; and let Books alone:
But these I will compare to every one
That here doth follow. Nay, old Homer writ
Not clearer Fancies, nor with clearer Wit:
And that Philosophy she doth dispense,
Is beyond Aristotle's hard Non-sense.
Her Observations of Diseases new,
Hippocrates the Grecian never knew.
As Eloquent she is as Cicero,
And sweeter Flowers of Rhet'rick here do grow.
Her lofty high Descriptions do shame still
The swelled Lines of the Imitator Virgil.
As good Odes too as Horace: nay, I can
Compate her Dialogues to rare Lucian.
Lucan, the Battle of thy Civil-War
Is lost; this Lady doth exceed thee far.
More Fame, by Morals, she, than Plutarch, gains.
As useful Fables she, as AEsop, feigns.
And as good Language as e're Terence writ.
Thy Comedies, poor Plautus, have less wit.
Her rare Epistles all Epistles sully,
Even the too-familiar of vain Tully.
And as wise Sentences she still doth say,
As Marcus Aurelius, or Seneca.
Verses as smooth and sweet as Ovid writ:
And may compare with sweet Tibullus Wit.
What takes the Soul more than a gentle vain,
That charms the charming Orpheus with its strain?
If all these Wits were praised for several ways,
What deserves this that hath them all? what praise?
THE Design of these my Feigned Stories, is, To present Virtue to your view,
the Muses leading her, and the Graces attending on her: To defend Innocence,
help the Distressed, lament the Unfortunate, and show that Vice is seldom
crowned with good success.
I have described in this Work many sorts of Passions, Humours, Behaviours,
Actions, Accidents, Governments, Laws, Customs, Peace, Wars, Climates, Arts
and Sciences; but have not Painted them all alike, some being done with
Oily-colours of Poetry, others with Water-colours of Prose: some upon dark
Grounds of Tragedy, and others upon light Grounds of Comedy. Nor are those
Descriptions so lively expressed by my Pen, as Sir Anthony Vandike's Pictures by
his Pencil, being rather formed by Fancy, than copied from the true Originals
of immediate Action; for I have not read much of History to inform my self of
what was done in former times, where I might unhappily have found, to my grief,
that some of my Sex have out-done all the glory I can aim at, or hope to attain
That my ambition of extraordinary Fame, is restless, and not ordinary, I
cannot deny: and since all Heroic Actions, Public Employments, as well Civil
as Military, and Eloquent Pleadings, are denied my Sex in this Age, I may be
excused for writing so much; for that is the Reason I have run, more busily
than industriously, upon every Subject I can think of.
Though some of these Stories be Romancical, I would not be thought to delight
in Romances, having never read a whole one in my life; and if I did believe
that these Tales should neither benefit the Life, nor please the Mind, more
than what I have read in them, did either instruct or satisfy me; or that they
could create Amorous thoughts in idle brains, as Romances do, I would never
suffer them to be printed, and would make Blots instead of Letters. But
Partiality persuades me otherwise; and I hope, that this Work will rather
quench Passion, than inflame it; will beget chaste Thoughts, nourish the love of
Virtue, kindle Human Pity, warm Charity, increase Civility, strengthen fainting
Patience, encourage noble Industry, crown Merit, and instruct Life: will damn
Vices, kill Follies, prevent Errors, forewarn Youth, and arm the Mind against
Misfortunes; and in a word, will admonish, direct, and persuade to that which
is best in all kinds, wherein I have my wishes and reward.
I have not dressed these Discourses with constraint fashions, which are hard
words, set-phrases, and bombast Sentences: but though it be done carelessly, yet
not loosely; and when I use any foreign words, do not, I beseech you, attribute
it to affectation, or to the vanity of being thought skilful in those Languages
from whence they are taken: for I have never learned any, besides my
Mother-Tongue, which is (at this time) extremely enriched with the wise and
lawful Plunder of others; and is like Mithridate and Cordial-waters, which are
much the better for being compounded of the choicest Ingredients.
For Method, I do neither understand perfectly what it is; nor, if I should,
have I the patience to be tied to its exact Rules, which in my opinion fetters
Nature more often than it helps it by its pretended Order. And therefore do not
expect in this Book any artificial Contrivances, and be contented to find my
Expressions clear, natural, and very intelligible, without the least Art in the
If I cannot be so happy to deserve your Commendations, let me deserve your
Censure; which cannot be (in relation to you) till you have read the whole
Work; and chiefly, the Stories of the Anchorite, and of the Experienced
Traveller; and then (I hope) the Prejudices you may have against an unlearned
Woman, will be taken off.
AS I was writing, by a little fire,
These Feigned Histories; I did desire
To see my Native Country, Native Friends,
That loved me well, and had no other ends
Than harmless mirth to pass away dull time,
With telling Tales either in Prose or Rime.
But though Desire did then like a Wind blow
The Sails of Wishes on Love's Ship to go;
Yet Banishment to my dear Lord, was then
A dangerous Rock, made of hard-hearted men.
And hearing of such dangers in my way,
I was content in Antwerp for to stay;
And in the Circle of my Brain to raise
The Figures of my Friends crowned with Praise:
These Figures placed in company together,
All setting by a Fire in cold weather;
The Fire was of Fancy, which I made
Within the Glandule of a Chimney laid:
My Lord and I amongst our Friedns was set
In the midst of them that were thither met.
But afterwards perceiving I could make
As many Figures as my Thoughts could take.
Then I invited all the Learned men,
And best of Poets that the Age had then:
The poorest Guess, though they no birth inherit,
To entertain according to their merit.
Thus was my Mind as busy as a Be,
To entertain this Noble Company.
Then my Imaginations a large Room built,
Furnished most curiously, and richly gilt:
I hired all the Arts for to provide
Choice of Provisions, and Pastime beside.
The Wit I had unto the Muses sent,
With Love's Request, which humbly did present
My Mind's Desire; which was, without delay,
To come and help to pass the time away.
Wit travelled far, and searched them all about,
At last in Nature's Court Wit found them out.
Then first to Nature, Wit did bow down low;
To Wit, Dame Nature did her Favours show;
And, with a pleasing-smile, she bid him say,
Whether be came to fetch her Maids away.
Wit answered, Yes. Then Nature bid them take
The Helicon Water, and with it make
The Company all Poets. Which they did,
Although they were but Pictures in my Head;
Their real persons at great distance were:
But on my Thoughts that did their Figures bear,
The marvellous Waters could not work well,
Which is the cause no better Tales I tell;
But hope those Friends my Fancy do present,
Will take it well, and for a good intent:
For I did trouble much my poor weak Brain,
This worthy Company to entertain.
SEVERAL Feigned Stories IN VERSE. The First BOOK.
READERS, my Works do not seem (in my Mind)
So bad as you make them, if Faults you find:
For if you find much Fault, you would not spare
Your ridgid Censures, but their Faults declare.
For I perceive the World is evil bent,
Judging the worst of that which was well meant.
When they a word to Wantonness can wrest,
They'll be well-pleas'd, and often at it jest:
When every foolish Tongue with words can play,
And turn good sense, with words, an evil way.
But at my Writings let them do their worst,
And for their pains with Ignorance be cursed.
IN Winter cold, a Company was met,
Both Men and Women by the Fire were set;
At last they did agree (to pass the time)
That every one should tell a Tale in Rhyme.
The Women said, We no true Measures know;
Nor do our Rhymes in even Numbers go.
Why, said the Men, All Women's Tongues are free
To speak both out of time, and follishly.
And, drawing Lots, the Chance fell on a Man,
Who having spit and blown his Nose, began:
Of the Mournful Widow.
I Travelling, it was my chance to spy
A little House, which to a Tomb stood nigh.
My Curiosity made me inquire
Who dwelt therein: to further my desire,
I knocked at the door; at last came one
Which told me, 'Twas a Lady lived alone.
I prayed that I the Lady might but see:
She told me, she did shun all Company.
By her discourse, the Lady had been Wife,
But being a Widow, lived a lonesome life.
I told her, I did travel all about,
Only to find a Constant Woman out.
She answered, If the world had any where
A Constant Woman, surely she dwelt there.
I waited there, in hope my Fortune might
At length direct me to this Lady's sight:
And lying underneath a Tomb at night,
At Curfue-time, this Lady with a Light
Came forth out of the House all clothed in white,
And to the Tomb her walk she bended right;
With a Majestick-grace she walked along,
She seemed to be both beautiful and young;
And when she came, she kneeled down to pray,
And thus unto her self did softly say.
Give leave, you Gods, this Loss for to lament;
Give my Soul leave to seek which way his went:
O let my Spirits with his run a Race,
Not to out-go, but to get next in place:
Amongst the Sons of Men raise up his Fame,
Let not foul Envy Canker-fret the same:
And whilst, Great Gods, I in the world do live,
Grant I may Honour to my Husband give:
O grant that all fond Love away may fly,
But let my Heart amongst his Ashes lye.
Here do I sacrifice each vainer dress,
And idle words, which my Youth did express.
Here, Dear, I cancel all Self-love, and make
A Bond, thy loving Memory to take,
And in my Soul always adore the same;
My Thoughts shall build up Altars to thy Name:
Thy Image in my heart shall fixed be:
My Tears from thence shall Copies take of thee,
And on my Cheeks those Tears as Pictures placed,
Or, like thy Carved Statue, ne'er shall waste.
Thy Praise my words (though air) shall print so deep,
By Repetition shall for ever keep.
With that, Tears from her Eyes in showers did flow:
Then I rose up, to her my self did show.
She seemed not to be moved at my sight,
Because her Grief was far above her Fright.
Said I, Weep, weep no more, thou Beauteous Saint,
Nor over these dull ashes make complaint;
They feel not thy warm Tears, which liquid flow;
Nor thy deep Sighs, which from thy Heart do go:
They hear thee not, nor thank thee for thy love;
Nor yet his Soul, that's with the God's above.
Take comfort, Saint, since Life will not return;
And bury not thy Joys within this Urn.
She Answered.
I have no Joys, in him they did reside;
They fled away when as his Body died:
Not that my Love unto his Shape was tied,
But to his Virtues, which did in him 'bide.
He had a Generosity beyond all Merit,
A Noble Fortitude possessed his Spirit;
Foreseeing-Prudence, which his Life did guide;
And Temperate Thoughts did in his Soul abide:
His Speech was sweet and gentle to the Eat;
Delight sate close, as listening for to hear
His Counsel wise, and all his Actions good:
His Truth and Honesty as Judges stood
For to direct and give his Actions Law:
His Piety to Gods was full of awe.
Wherefore return, your Counsels are in vain;
For I must grieve whilst I'n the world remain:
For I have sacrificed all my Delight
Upon my Noble Husband's Grave, and slight
All Vanities, which Women young do prize,
Though they entangle them, as Webs do Flies.
Lady, said I, you being Young and Fair,
By Pleasures to the world invited are:
Bury not all your Youth and Beauty here,
Which like the Sun may to all Eyes appear.
O Sir, said she, the Sun that gave me light,
Death hath eclipsed, and taken from my sight.
In Melancholy Shades my Soul doth lie,
And grieves my Body which will not yet die.
My Spirits long to wander in the air,
Hoping to find its loving Partner there.
Though Fates my Life have power to prolong,
Yet they have none my constant Mind to wrong.
But when I did perceive no Rhetoric could
Persuade her to take comfort, grieve she would;
Then taking my leave for to go away,
With adoration thus to her did say:
Farewell thou Angel of a Heavenly Breed,
For sure thou come not from a Mortal Seed,
Thou art so constant unto Virtue fair,
Which very few of either Sexes are.
And after a short time I heard she died;
Her Tomb was built close by her Husband's side.
After the Man, a Woman did begin
To tell her Tale; and thus she entered in.
A Description of Diverted Grief.
A Man had once a Young and Handsome Wife,
Whose Virtue was unspotted all her life.
Her words were smooth, which from her Tongue did slide;
All her Discourse was wittily applied.
Her Actions modest, her Behaviour so,
As when she moved, the Graces seemed to go.
Whatever Ill she chanced to see or hear,
Yet still her Thoughts as pure as Angels were.
Her Husband's Love seemed such, as no Delight
Nor Joy could take him out of his Wife's sight.
It chanced this virtuous Wife fell sick to death,
And to her Husband spake with dying-breath:
Farewell my dearest Husband, dye I must,
Yet do not you forget me in the Dust;
Because my Soul would grieve if it should see
Another in my room, your LOVE to be:
My Ghost would mourn, lament; that never dyes,
Though Bodies do; pure Loves eternalize.
You Gods, said he, that order Death and Life,
O strike me dead, unless you spare my Wife.
If your Decree be fixed, nor alter can,
But she must dye, (O miserable Man!)
Here do I vow (Great Gods all witness be),
That I will have no other Wife but thee:
No Friendship will I make, converse with none;
But live an Anchorite my self alone.
Thy Spirits sweet, my Thoughts shall entertain;
And in my Mind thy Memory remain.
Farewell, said she, for now my Soul's at peace,
And all the Blessings of the Gods increase
Upon thy Soul; but I pray do not give
Away that Love I had whilst I did live.
Turning her Head, as if to sleep she lay,
In a soft Sigh her Spirits flew away.
When she was dead, great Mourning he did make,
Would neither eat, nor drink, nor rest could take;
Kissing her cold pale Lips, her Cheeks, each Eye;
Cursing his Fate he lives, and cannot dye:
Tears fell so fast, as if his Sorrows meant,
To lay her in a watery Monument.
But when her Corps upon the Hearse was laid,
No Tongue can tell what mournful Cries he made.
Thus did he pass his time, a week or two,
In sad commplaints, and melancholy wo;
At last he was persuaded for to take
Some air abroad, even for his own healths sake.
But first, unto the Grave he went to pray,
Kissing that Earth wherein her Body lay.
After a Month or two, his Grief to ease,
Some Recreations sought himself to please;
And calling for his Horses, and his Hounds,
He went to hunt upon the Champion grounds:
His Thoughts by these Pastimes diverted are,
Passed by the Grave, and never dropped a Tear.
At last he chanced a Company to meet
Of Virgins young, and fresh as Flowers sweet;
Their Clothing fine, their Humours pleasant, gay,
And with each other they did sport and play,
Giving his Eyes a liberty to view;
With interchanging Looks, in Love he grew.
One Maid amongst the rest, most fair and young,
Who had a ready wit, and pleasant tongue,
He Courtship made, to her he did address,
Cast off his Mourning, Love for to express.
Rich Clothes he made, and wondrous fine they were;
He barb'd, and curled, and powdered sweet his Hair:
Rich Gifts unto his Mistress did present,
And every day to visit her he went.
They like each other well, they both agree,
That in all haste they straight must married be.
To Church they went, for joy the Bells did ring:
When married were, he home the Bride did bring.
But when he married was some half a year,
He Curtain-Lectures from his Wife did hear:
For whatsoever he did, she did with spite
And scorn dislike, and all his kindness slight:
Cross every word, she would, that he did say;
Seemed very sick, complaining every day,
Unless she went abroad; then she would be
In humour good, in other Company.
Then he would sigh, and call into his Mind.
His dear dead Wife that was so wondrous kind.
He jealous grew, and was so discontent,
(And of his later Marriage did repent)
With Melancholy Thoughts fell sick and died;
His Wife soon after was another Bride.
When she had done, the Men aloud did cry;
Said she had quit her Tale most spitefully.
Another Man, to answer what she told,
Began to tell, and did his Tale unfold.
The Feminine Description.
A Man a walking, did a Lady spy;
To her he went: and when he came hard by,
Fair Lady, said he, why walk you alone?
Because (said she) my Thoughts are then my own:
For in a Company my Thoughts do throng,
And follow every foolish babbling Tongue.
Your Thoughts, said he, 'twere boldnessfor to ask.
To tell, said she, it were too great a task:
But yet to satisfy your Mind, said she,
I'll tell you how our Thoughts run commonly:
Sometimes they mount up to the Heavens high,
Then straight fall down, and on the Earth will lye;
Then circling run to compass all they may,
And then sometimes they all in heaps do stay.
At other times they run from place to place,
As if they had each other in a Chase.
Sometimes they run as Fancy doth them guide,
And then they swim as in a flowing-Tide:
But if the Mind be discontent, they flow
Against the Tide, their Motion's dull and slow.
Said he,
I travel now to satisfy my Mind,
Whether I can a Constant Woman find.
O Sir, said she, it's Labour without end,
We cannot Constant be to any Friend:
We seem to love to death, but 'tis not so,
Because our Passions still move to and fro:
They are not fixed, but do run all about;
Every new Object thrusts the former out.
Yet we are fond, and for a time so kind,
As nothing in the world should change our Mind:
But if Misfortune come, we weary grow;
Then former Fondness we away straight throw:
Although the Object alter not, yet may
Time alter our fond Minds another way.
We love, and like, and hate, and cry,
Without a Cause, or Reason why.
Wherefore go back, for you shall never find
Any Woman to have a Constant Mind:
The best that is, shall hold but for a time,
Wav'ring like wind, which Women hold no Crime.
A Woman said, This Tale I will requite,
To vindicate our Sex which you did slight.
A Man in love was with a Lady fair,
And for her sake would curl, perfume his Hair.
Professions thousands unto her did make,
And swore for her a Pilgrimage would take.
I swear, said he, Truth shall for me be bound,
Constant to be, whilst Life in me is found.
With all his Rivals he would Quarrels make;
In Duels fought he often for her sake.
It chanced this Lady sick was, like to dye
Of the Small Pox, Beauty's great Enemy.
When she was well, her Beauty decayed quite,
He did forsake her, and her Friendship slight;
Excuses made, her did not often see,
Then asked leave a Traveller to be.
And thus, poor Lady, when her Beauty's gone,
Without her Lover she may sit alone.
Then was the third Man's turn, his Tale to tell,
Which to his Company he fitted well.
A Description of Constancy.
THere was a Noble Man that had a Wife
Young, Fair, and Virtuous; yet of so short life,
That after she had married been a year,
A Daughter's born, which Daughter cost her deer;
No sooner born, the Mother laid in bed,
Before her Lord could come, his Wife was dead;
Where, at the sight, he did not tear his Hair,
Nor beat his Breast, nor sigh, nor shed a Tear;
Nor buried her in state, as many do,
And with that Funeral-Charge a new Wife wo:
But silently he laid her in a Tomb,
Where, by her side, he meant to have a Room:
For by no other side he meant to lye,
In Life and Death to keep her company.
The whilst he of his Daughter care did take,
And fond he was even for his dear VVife's sake:
But Grief upon his Spirits had got hold,
Consumed him more than Age, that makes Men old.
His Flesh did waste, his Manly Strength grew weak;
His Face grew pale, and faintly did he speak:
As most that in a deep Consumption are,
Where Hectick-Fevers do with Life make war:
And though he joyed he had not long to live,
Yet for to leave his Daughter young, did grieve;
For he no Kindred had to take a care
Of his young Child, and Strangers he did fear
They would neglect their Charge, not see her bred
According to her Birth, when he was dead;
Or rob her of her Wealth, or else would sell
Her to a Husband might not use her well:
Or else (by Servants bribed) might her betray
With some mean Man, and so to run away.
These cares of his, his Mind did much torment,
And her Ill Fortune to his Thoughts present.
At last he did conclude, If any be
True, Just, and full of Generosity,
They're such as are like to the Gods on high,
As Powerful Princes, and Dread Majesty.
The Sovereign was dead, but left to reign
His Widowed-Queen, whose Prudence did maintain
The Government, though Foreign Wars she had,
Which was a Charge, and oft-times made her sad.
This Noble-man sent to the Queen to crave,
That she upon his Child would pity have,
To take her to the Court, there to be bred,
That none might wrong her after he was dead.
The Queen most willingly his Suit did sign,
And so in Peace his Soul he did resign.
This Lady soon did to the Court repair,
Where she was bred with tender Love and Care;
And Youth, that's bred in Courts, may wisest be,
Because they more do hear, and more do see
Than other Children that are bred obscure,
Because the Senses are best Tutors sure.
But Nature in this Maid had done her part,
And in her frame had showed her curious Art;
Composed her every way, Body and Mind,
Of best Extracts that were to form Mankind:
All which she gave to Time for to distill,
And of the subtil'st Spirits the Soul to fill;
As Reason, Wit, and Judgment; and to take
The solid'st part the Body for to make.
For though that Nature all her works shapes out,
Yet Time doth give strength, length, and breadth about.
And as her Person grew in stature tall,
And that her Beauty did increase withal;
So did affection in her Heart grow high,
Which there was planted in her Infancy.
There was a Subject, Prince within the Land,
Although but young, the Army did command:
He being chose for Birth, Wealth, Valour, Wit,
And Prudence, for to lead and martial it;
The whilst his Father did the Queen assist
To manage State-affairs, as knowing best
The Kingdom's Constitutions, Natures bad
Of Common-People, who are sometimes mad,
And wildly in Distempers, Ruins bring;
For most Rebellions from the Commons spring.
But he so just and loyally did serve
His Queen and Country, as he did preserve
Himself within her Favour, and her Love,
As great Respect, and honoured Praise did prove;
And in the Wars his Son such Fame did get,
That in Fame's Chariot he triumphant set.
For he was Valiant, and of Nature free,
Courteous, and full of Generosity:
His Wit was quick, yet so as to delight,
Not for to cross, or in Disputes to fight:
For gallant Sword-men that do fight in war,
Do never use with Tongues to brawl and jar.
He was exact in Body and in Mind,
For no Defects in either could you find.
The Queen, that had a Niece both young and fair,
Did strive to match her to this Prince, and Heir
Of all his Father's Wealth, who had such store,
As all the Nobles else did seem but poor:
And the young Princess liked so well the choice,
That thoughts of marrying him did her rejoice:
And through her Eyes such Messages Love sent,
On smiling-rays and posting-glances went.
The other Lady did hear the Report,
For every one did talk of it in Court:
Besides, she saw his Person still attend
Upon the Princess, and did Presents send:
And every day to visit her did go,
As being commanded by his Father so.
At which she sad and melancholy grew;
Yet her Disease not thoroughly she knew.
Like as a Plant, that from the Earth doth spring,
Sprouts high, before a full-blown Flower it bring.
So did her Love in Bud obscurely lye,
Not any one as yet did it descry:
Nor did the Prince the least affection find,
She being reserved in action, and in mind.
Sober she was, and of a bashful look,
Of but few words; yet she good notice took,
And much observed, for Love hath a quick Eye,
And often by her Countenance doth spy
The hidden Thoughts, that the Tongue dare not tell:
For in the Mind obscurity doth dwell.
But yet she did espy something lay cross
To his Desires, but guessed not what it was;
But grieved that any thing should him displease:
For those that love, do wish their Loved much ease:
Nay, so much ease, they Torments would endure,
If these, for those they love, might good procure.
But she grew restless, and her Thoughts did run
About him, as about the World, the Sun:
For he was her sole World, and wished her Love
Had influence, as Planets from above,
To order his affections, and to bring
From several Causes, one Effect to spring;
And the Effect, that he might love her so,
As love her best, or at least he might know
How well she loved him; for she wished no more
Than love for love, as Saints which do adore
The Gods in Heaven, whose love is wholly pure,
And nothing can of drossy flesh endure.
At last she and her Thoughts in Council sate,
What was best to be done, or this, or that:
They all agree, that she her Love should own,
Since innocent and pure, and make it known
By her Epistles, and her Pen to write
What her pure Heart did dictate and indite:
No forfeit of her Modesty, because
She had no Ends, but only Virtuous Laws.
Then took she Pen and Paper, and her Wit
Did tell her Love the truth; and thus she writ:
Sir, You may wonder much that I do send
This Letter, which by Love doth recommend
It self and suit unto your judging-ear,
And that it was not stopped by bashful fear:
But let me tell you, This pure Love of mine
Is built on Virtue, not on base Design.
It hath no dross, nor proudly doth aspire;
A Flame kindled by immac'late Fire,
Which I to the Altar of your Merits bring,
From whence the Flame to Heaven high may spring.
Your glorious Fame within my Heart, though young,
Did plant a Slip of Honour, from whence sprung
Pure Love, and Chaste Desires; for I do crave,
Only within your Heart a place to have.
I do not plead, hoping to be your Wife,
Nor 'twixt you and your Mistress to breed strife;
Or wish I that her Love you should forsake,
Or unto me a Courtly Friendship make:
But only, when I'm dead, you would inshrine
Within your Memory, this Love of mine;
Which Love to all the World I may proclaim
Without a blush, or check, or spotted-fame:
'Tis not your Person I do so admire,
Nor yet your Wealth or Titles I desire:
But your Heroic Soul, and Generous Mind,
Your Affability and Nature kind;
Your honest Heart, where Justice still doth reign;
Your prudent Thoughts, and a well-temper'd Brain;
Your helping Hand, and your industrious Life,
Not to make broils, but to decide all strife;
And to advance all those are in distress,
To help the weak, and those are powerless;
For which my Heart and Life to Love is bound,
And every thought of you with Honour crowned.
These are not feigning Lines that here I write,
But Truths as clear and pure as Heaven's Light.
Nor is it Impudence to let you know,
Love of your Virtues in my Soul doth grow.
Her Love thus innocent she did enrol,
Which was the pure Platonic of her Soul:
Though in black Characters the Envious may
Call the sense clear, as is the Morning's day;
And every word appear unto the sight,
To make her smoother Paper yet more white.
Thus she enfolded Honour, and more Truth,
Than ever yet was known in Female-youth.
Blush-colour'd Silk her Letter then did bind,
For to express how modest was her Mind:
And Virgins Wax did close it with her Seal:
Yet did that Letter all her Love reveal.
Then to her Nurse's Husband she did trust
These loving Lines, knowing him faithful, just
To all her Family; he obeyed her will,
And would have done, no doubt, though't had been ill:
For his Obedience never asked the cause;
Nor was he Casuist in Divine Laws,
But faithful and most trusty: so was sent
With this most Sacred Letter; then he went.
In the mean time that she her Letter sent,
The Prince to her a Letter did present
By a Servant, in whom he put much trust,
As finding him both dextrous, prudent, just
In all Employments; he this Letter brought,
Which'mongst this Lady's Thoughts much wonder wrought;
Even so much, as she could not believe,
But thought he did mistake, and did conceive
She was the Princess. Whereupon, said she,
I doubt this Letter was not writ to me.
But he confirmed, to her that it was writ.
She to her Closet went, and opened it:
With trembling hands the VVaxen Seal she broke,
And what he writ, with a faint Voice thus spoke:
Fairest of all your Sex, for so you are
Unto all others; as a Blazing-Starr,
Which shows it self, and to the World appears
As a great Wonder once in many years;
And never comes, but doth portend on Earth
Either the fall of Princes, or their Birth.
O let your influence only at me aim,
Not for to work my Overthrow, or Fame;
But Love, to make me happy all my life;
Then yield your self to be my Virtuous Wife.
But if you (this Request) to me deny,
The Gods, I hope, will grant me soon to dye.
She, when she this had read, was in a maze,
And senslesly did on the Letter gaze;
By which her Spirits discomposed were,
In quarrelling-disputes, 'twixt Hope and Fear.
At last Hope got the better, then did they
Triumph with joy, and in her Heart did play.
For when the Spirits mutually agree,
Both in the Eyes and Heart they dancing be.
Then to the Gentleman that came, she went,
And told him civilly that she had sent
Unto the Prince, and that she could not fit
So well an Answer to return as yet.
The Prince as Melancholy sate alone,
But all the while his Mistress thought upon:
Staid for the Messenger's return; for he,
Till answer came, refused all Company.
At last one of his Pages to him ran,
To tell him, Without was an ancient Man
That would not be denied, for speak he must
Unto the Prince, or else must break his trust
He was in charge with; and rather than so,
Would venture life, before he back would go,
And not his Message to the Prince to tell.
Whereat the Prince, liking his Courage well,
Sent for him, who came with Humility,
The Letter gave upon his bended knee.
The Prince the Letter read, and pleased so,
As by his smiling-countenance did show;
Which made all Cloudy Thoughts disperse, clears
His Mind, as in dark days when Sun appears.
Sure, said the Prince, the Gods our Loves decree,
And in our Unions they do all agree:
They join our Hearts in one, our Souls so mix,
As if eternally in Heaven would fix.
Then soon he (all delays for to prevent)
Another Letter writ; which to her sent
In answer of her own; this Letter gave
Unto her Foster-Nurse, who was as grave
As old bald Father Time, of Courage stout,
A Rustic plainness, and not eas'ly out
Of countenance; trusty to be employed,
And in her Lady's service would have died.
The Prince commended her Fidelity,
And pleased he was at her blunt Quality:
But with the Letter quickly did return,
(For she, though old, yet every step did run)
And then the Letter which the Prince had sent,
She to her Lady did in mirth present;
Who then the Letter broke with joyful speed,
And to her Foster-Nurse she did it read:
Sweetest, You have expressed your Love to me
With so much plainness and sincerity;
And yet your stile severely have you writ,
And ruled your Lines with a Commanding-wit:
Heroic Flourishes your Pen doth draw,
Or executes as in a Martial-Law.
Then solemnly doth march in Mourning-trail,
And melancholy words all hopes do vail.
As Golden dust on written lines strewn were,
Your written lines seem sprinkled with a Tear;
As by the Heat of Passion spread about,
For fear that Cruelty should blot it out.
But let me tell you, That my love is such,
As never Lover loved half so much,
And with so fervent Zeal, and purest Flame,
Nay, something above Love, that wants a Name
For to express it; like to Gods on high:
For, who can comprehend a Deity?
And though I honour all your Sex, yet my
Having another Mistress, I deny,
Besides your self; and though I do obey
To visit the fair Princess, nothing say
Concerning Love, nor yet Professions make,
As common Lovers, promise for her sake
Wonders; and yet my Life to her will give
To do her service: but whilst I do live,
My Heart and Soul is yours; and when I dye,
Still will my Soul keep yours in company:
Though by Honour my active life is bound
Unto your Sex, you only will be found
Within my Heart, and only Love to be,
From whence my Brain doth Copies take of thee:
On which my Soul doth view with much delight,
Because the Soul sees not with vulgar sight:
For Souls do see, not as the Senses do,
But as transparent Glass, the Minds quite through:
Or rather as the Gods see all that's past,
Present, or what's to come, or the World vast;
Or what can be, all unto them is known;
And so are Souls to one another shown:
And if our Souls do equally agree,
Our Thoughts and Passions to each known will be.
But after this Letter, they both did get
An opportunity, by which they met:
No Complemental-wooing they did use;
True Love all flattering words it doth refuse.
But they agreed, and both did think it fit,
Their love to hide, not to discover it.
At last the Queen and Father did agree,
The Prince and Princess straight should married be;
Ne'er made a question, for they doubted not
But Youth and Beauty had each other shot
With Amorous Loves. But when the Prince made known,
How that his heart was now none of his own;
His Father seemed, with trouble, discontent:
But the enraged Queen, with malice bent,
Did strive all ways she could for to disgrace
The sweet young Lady, oft dispraised her Face,
Her Person, Dress, Behaviour, and her Wit;
And for to match with such a Prince, not fit.
The Prince's love so firm, no words could break;
Impatiently did hear, but little speak.
But the Princess heard the Prince to be
A Lover to another; then did she
Tear, rail, and rave, as if she frantic were;
And of her Rival, words she would not spare.
One day a Company of Nobles met,
And in a Room they were together set;
The Prince and his Fair Mistress she did spy,
And often at them cast a spiteful Eye.
At last her Malice set a-work her Tongue,
And at the Prince she evil words out flung,
Which he received with a submissive face,
Turning those scorns as favours of her grace.
But when she had with Scorns his Patience tried,
She (for to vent her Spleen) in Passion cried.
Some of the Company there jesting by
The other Lady, asked if she would cry:
She answer made, she had not the like cause;
Nor had she broke the Modest Civil Laws:
But if her Passion had misled her Tongue,
She would have wept to water, or else flung
Her self to dust, for want of moisture dye,
Unless her life could issue through her eye.
But when the Prince perceived such storms to rise,
And showering tears to fall from beauteous eyes,
He did absent himself, and shunned to be
A trouble to the Princess Company.
But when the Queen had tried all means she could
To alter his affections, nothing would;
She then their Marriage strove for to prevent,
And to the Army she the Prince soon sent;
Then order gave, Not to return again,
But with the Army there for to remain.
He to his Mistress went, his leave to take,
Persuading her a Journey she would make
Unto the Army, and there to agree,
When they should meet, straight-way married be.
At last she did resolve to leave the Court,
And privately with great speed to transport
Her Person to the Prince where he was gone,
For ne'er till then she found her self alone.
When the Army began for to retire
To Winter-Quarters, he did there desire
His Mistress Company, and then did write
To those he had entrusted, how they might
Convey her safely: but by some mistake,
The Queen had means this his Letter to take;
Which when she read, all in a rage she grew,
And then his Letter into the fire she threw.
Which when she had told her Niece, they both did strive,
And both in Council sate, for to contrive
To hinder her wish'd-meeting; wherefore they
Did think it best, the Lady to convey
Unto some private place, and then give out
That she was dead, which soon was spread about,
And every one in censuring spent some breath,
And most did judge she died a violent death.
But the Queen's anger only would destroy
Their Loves, because her Niece then should enjoy
The Prince, on whom her heart in love was set,
And used all means she could, his love to get.
But though at first they thought the Prince might mourn;
Yet when his grief had been by time out-worn,
He then might take the Princess for his Wife,
Concealing the young Lady all her life.
And though they did not murder her, yet they
Did strive to grieve and cross her every way:
Wherefore they did agree that some should tell
Her, that the Prince in Battle fell.
The report of her death spread far and near;
And at last came unto the Prince his ear:
The news struck him so hard, as it did make
His strength grow weak, and all his limbs to shake.
But when his strength returned, his mind sad grew,
And from all company himself withdrew:
No Orders he would give, but left the care
Of all the Army to an Officer:
And from the Army, without the Queen's consent,
He did return, and to his Father went,
And told him, he all worldly things did wave,
Had buri'd them all in his Mistress Grave,
And the remainder of his days would spend
In holy Devotion, his Prayers would send
Unto the Gods; and my dear Saint, said he,
Will be a Mediator there for me:
His Father did dissuade him all he could,
But all in vain, a Hermit be he would.
Instead of Palaces, he chose a Cell,
Left Courts and Camps, did solitary dwell:
Instead of Clothes that rich and costly were,
He wore a Garment made of Camel's hair.
Instead of Arms, a Hermit's Habit took;
And for a Sword, he used a Prayer-book:
Instead of treading Measures in a dance,
And wanton Eyes that oft would side-ways glance;
His knees upon hard stone did bowing bend,
And his sad Eyes unto the Earth descend:
Instead of flattering words to tempt Maids fair,
No words did speak but what were used in Prayer.
All wild wandering thoughts were now composed,
And the dead object of his Mistress closed,
Like Multitudes that gather in a Ring,
To view some curious or some wondrous thing:
Or like a devout Congregation met,
Will strive about the Altar near to set:
So did his Thoughts near her Idea get,
Which, as a Goddess, in his Soul did set:
Then he an Altar built of Marble white,
And Waxen Tapers round about did light:
Her Picture on this Altar placed was high,
There to be seen with an up-lifted Eye.
She was his Saint, and he there every day
Did offer Tears and Sighs, to her did pray,
And her implore, she would the Gods request
To take his Soul, his Body lay to rest.
In the mean time his Mistress's made believe
That he was killed, for which she much did grieve:
For when she at the first the news did hear,
Her Face turned pale, like Death it did appear:
Then gently sinking, she fell to the ground;
Grief seized her heart, and put her in a swooned:
At last, life got the better, and then wept,
And wished to Heaven, that she in death had slept.
But Melancholy her whole Soul possessed,
And of all pleasing Thoughts it self divest:
All objects shuns, that pleasing were, and fair;
And all such sounds as were of a leight air:
The splendrous Light and glorious Sun shut out,
And all her Chamber hung with black about:
No other light but blinking Lamps would have:
Some Earth and Turf therein, like to a Grave,
The which she often viewed, or sate close by,
Imagining the Prince therein did lye;
And on that Grave, her Tears, like showers of rain,
Keep fresh the Turf, on the green Grass remain
As pearled dew before the Sun doth rise;
Or as refreshing showers from Cloudy Skies:
And often this supposed Grave doth dress
With such significant Flowers as did express
His Virtues, and his Dispositions sweet,
More than those Flowers when in Posies meet:
His various Virtues, known to all so well
More fragrant than those Flowers were for smell.
But first, she set a Lawrel-Garland green,
To show that he a Victor once had been;
And in the midst a copious Branch did place,
For to express he dyed in the chase
Of his fierce Enemies; his Courage was so true,
That, after a long fight, away they flew.
Thus Melancholy past her time away,
Besides sad solemn Music twice a day:
For every Sense with Melancholy filled,
And always dropping-tears from thence distilled,
With which her Melancholy Soul did feed,
And Melancholy Thoughts her Mind did breed:
Then on the ground her Head aside-ways hung,
Would lye along whilst these sad Songs were sung.
TITAN, I banish all thy joys of Light,
Turning thy glorious Rays, to darker Night;
Clothing my Chamber with sad Black, each part,
Thus suitable unto my mournful heart:
Only a dimn Wax Taper there shall wait
On me, to show my sad unhappy Fate.
With mournful Thoughts my Head shall furnished be,
And all my Breath sad Sighs, for love of thee:
My Groans to sadder Notes be set with skill,
And sung in Tears, and Melancholy still.
Languishing-Musick to fill up each Voice
With Palsied trembling Strings, is all my choice.
SInce he is gone, Oh then Salt Tears,
Drown both mine Eyes, and stop mine Ears
With Grief; my Grief it is so much,
It locks my Smell up, Taste, and Touch.
In me remains but little breath,
Which quickly take away, Oh Death.
WHY should I live? But who doth know
The way to him, or where to go?
Death's ignorant, the Dead they have
No sense of Grief, when in the Grave.
Forgetful and Unthankful Death,
Hast thou no love, when gone's our Breath?
No Gratitude, but there dost lye,
In dark Oblivion for to dye?
No sense of Love, or Honour, there:
Then Death I prithee me forbear:
Thousands of years in sorrow I
Would live in Grief, and never dye.
MY Bed of Sorrow's made, since no relief;
And all my Pillows shall be stuffed with Grief,
My Winding-sheets are those whereon I lye,
My Curtains drawn with sad Melancholy.
Watching shall be my Food, Weeping my Drink,
Sighing my Breath, and Groaning what I think:
Trembling and shaking, all my Exercise;
Disquiet and disordered Thoughts now rise.
Wringing of hands, with folded arms lamenting,
Is all the joy is left me of contenting:
For he is gone that was my joy, my life;
I'm left his Widow, who never was his Wife.
But all the while, the Queen was angry bent
Against the Prince, because away he went,
And left the Army without a General;
For which she Rebel, Traitor, him did call:
But she another General did make,
Which of the Army all the Charge did take:
Yet his Success in Wars proved but bad,
For afterward the Queen great Losses had.
And all the Soldiers they were discontent:
Whereat the Queen another General sent;
But he no better Fortune there could meet,
The Enemy did force him to retreat;
Then did the Enemy so powerful grow,
The Forces of the Queen they overthrow
In every Fight and Skirmish which they had;
For which the Queen and Kingdom did grow sad.
At last the Queen the Prince did flatter, and
Entreated him again for to Command:
But he denied the Queen, would not obey;
Said, Earthly Power to Gods they must give way.
At last she sent him word she would not spare
His life, and therefore bid him to prepare
Himself for death, for dye he should
For Disobedience, and Revenge she would
Have on him: Then his Father to him went
For to persuade him, and there did present
Showers of Tears, which sadly pouring fell
Upon his only Son, his grief to tell.
He round about his Neck one arm did wind,
The other arm embraced his Body kind:
His Cheeks his Son did join to his,
And often he his Lips did kiss:
O pity me, my Son, and thy Life spare,
Thou art my only Child, and only Heir.
The art my sole Joy, in thee I pleasure take,
And wish to live but only for thy sake.
The Prince, his Father answered; and said he,
I am not worth those Tears you shed for me.
But why do you thus weep, and thus lament,
For my death now? When to the Wars I went,
You did encourage me to fight in field
For Victory, or else my Life to yield:
I willingly obeyed, and joyed to find
My Father's Sympathy unto my Mind.
Besides, it showed a greater love to me,
Than Parents self-lov'd fondness used to be;
For to prefer my Honour, and my Fame,
Before the perpetu'ty of your Name:
And as you prized my Honour and Renown,
So I a Heavenly, not an Earthly Crown:
And give me leave the better choice to make,
To quit all troubles, and sweet Peace to take:
I never more willing, nor more fit can dye,
For Heaven, and the Gods pure company:
For had I died in Wars, my Soul had been
Stained with Blood, and spotted over with Sin.
But now, my Mistress is a Saint, in Heaven
Hath intercession made, my sins forgiven.
And since she's gone, all Joys with her are fled,
And I shall never happy be, till dead:
She was my Soul's delight, in her I viewed
The pure and Celestial Beatitude.
But were I sure the Soul that never dyes,
Should never meet, nor Bodies never rise
By Resurrection; yet sure those are blessed
That pass this life, and in the Grave do rest.
Then said the Duke (his Father) to his Son,
What ever comes, Son, Heaven's will be done;
But since you are resolved, and needs will dye,
I in the Grave will keep you company.
The young Prince said, I cannot you dissuade,
Since none are happy but those Death hath made.
The Day of Execution drawing nigh
Of the young Prince, his Father too would dye.
Then the young Prince asked leave, and leave he had,
That he like to a Soldier might be clad:
When he was brought to dye, and on that day
Death he did meet in Soldierly array:
Instead of Mourning-Garments, he had on
A Suit of Buff, embroidered thick upon;
And a Rich Scarf that was of Watchet-dye,
Set thick with Pearls; instead of strings to tie
It close together, were rich Diamonds, so
As like a Ring or Garter it did show,
Of but one entire Diamond; this did bind
The Scarf so firm as an united Mind:
A Scarlet Coat embroidered thick with Gold;
And Hangers like to it, his Sword did hold;
And in his Hat a Plume of Feathers were,
In falling-folds, which hung below his Hair.
He being thus accoutred, Death to meet
In Gallantry, yet gently, friendly, sweet:
He would embrace it, and so gladly yield,
Yet would he dye as Soldiers in the Field:
For gallant valiant men do court Death so,
As amorous courtly men a wooing go.
His Father all in Mourning-Garments clad,
Not grieved to dye, but for his Son was sad:
Millions of People thronged about to see
This gallant Mourning Prince's Tragedy.
But in the time these Preparations were,
The Queen sent to the young Lady to prepare
Her self to dye: when she the news did hear,
Joy in her Countenance did then appear:
Then she her self did dress like to a Bride,
And in a Rich and Gilded Coach did ride:
Thus triumphing as on her Wedding-day,
To meet her Bridegroom Death; but in the way
The people all did weep that she should dye,
And Youth and Beauty in Death's arms should lye.
But she did smile, her Countenance was glad,
And in her Eyes such lively Spirits had,
As the quick-darting Rays the Sun out-shin'd,
And all she looked on, for a time were blind.
But when the Queen and Nobles all were set,
And the Condemned on the Scaffold met:
Where when the Lovers they each other spied,
Their Eye-strings seemed as if together tied:
So firmly they were fixed, and did so gaze,
And with each other struck in such a maze,
As if with wonder they were turned to stone,
And that their feet unto the ground were grown;
They could not stir; but at the last moved he
In a slow pace, amazed, went to see
That Heavenly Object; for, thought he, it may
An Angel be, my Soul to take away.
Her Limbs did shake, like shivering Agues cold,
For Fear upon her Spirits had got hold,
When she did see him move; for she had thought
He was a Statue, and by Carvers wrought,
And by the Queen's Command was thither brought.
When he came near, he kneeled down to pray,
And thus unto her sofrly he did say:
My Sense my Spirits surprise, thy Spirit my Mind;
And great disturbance in my Thoughts I find:
My Reason's misty, Understanding blind;
Tell me whether thou art of Mortal Kind.
Said she, That Question I would ask of you,
For I do doubt my Senses are not true
Intelligencers; are you the Prince I see?
Or are you a Spirit that thus speaks to me?
With that, the Queen did come, their doubts to clear;
It was my Plot, said she, to bring you here:
And why I crossed your Loves, I will forbear
To tell you now, but afterwards declare.
Then did she cause a Priest to join their hands,
Which he devoutly tied in Wedlock-bands.
Then did the Queen unto her Nobles say,
That she a Debt to Gratitude must pay:
And to the Prince's Father straight she went;
Here, Sir, said she, I do my self present
To be your Wife; for by your Counsel I
Have Ruled and Reigned in great Felicity.
He, kneeling, kissed her Hand; and both agree,
That in few days the Wedding kept should be.
Such joys of acclamation loud, of wonder,
Echoed the air, louder than is Jove's Thunder.
Her Princely Niece so Noble was, that then
For joy she modestly threw up her Fan;
Since to a High-born Prince she well knew she
In glorions Nuptials soon should joined be.
The Marriage-Song.
WEre all the Joys that ever yet were known;
Were all those Joys met, and put into one,
They'd be, than these two Lovers Joys, far less;
Our Lovers height of Joys, none can express:
They've made another Cupid, I am told,
And buri'd the blind Boy that was so old.
Hymen is proud, since Laurel crowns his Brow,
He never made his Triumphs until now.
The Marriage-Song for the Old Duke and the Old Queen's Marriage.
NOW the Old Cupid he is fled
Unto the Queen; she to her Bed
Brought the Old Duke; so ends all harms
In Love's Embraces, in their Arms.
This Elder Wedlock, more than ripe,
Was of the Younger but a Type:
What wants of Cupid, Hymen's Cup,
Ceres and Bacchus make it up.
A Marriage-Song of the Queen's Niece.
SEE the Old Queen's Beloved Niece,
For Beauty, Favour, such a Piece
As Love could feign, not hope to see;
Just such a Miracle was she.
She doth congratulate, and's eased
To see these Noble Lovers pleased
Above repining: The Fates since
Are just, and gave her a brave Prince.
HYMEN triumph in joy,
Since overcom'd Love's Boy:
Each Age, each Sex and Place,
The Wedlock-Laws embrace,
The looser sort can bind,
Monarch of what's Mankind.
All things do fall so pat
In this Triumvirat,
Which now in Wedlock mix;
Now Three, though once were Six.
A Lady said, Such Constant Love was dead,
And all Fidelity to Heaven fled.
Another Lady said, She fain would know,
When Marri'd, if they did continue so.
O, said a Man, such Love (as this was) sure
Doth never in a Married Pair endure:
But Lovers crossed, use not to end so well:
Which, for to show, a Tale I mean to tell.
The Description of the Violence of Love.
THere was a Lady, Virtuous, Young, and Fair,
Unto her Father only Child and Heir:
In her Behaviour modest, sweet, and civil;
So innocent, knew only Good from Evil:
Yet in her Garb had a Majestic Grace,
And affable and pleasant was her Face.
Another Gentleman (whose House did stand
Hard by her Father's, and was rich in Land)
He had a Son whom Beauty did adorn,
As some might think, of Venus he was born:
His Spirit Noble, Generous, and Great;
By Nature Valiant, Dispositions sweet:
His Wit ingenious, and his Breeding such,
That his Sci'nces did not Pedantry t'uch.
This Noble Gentleman in love did fall
With this fair Lady, who was pleased withal:
He Courted her, his Service did address;
His Love by Words and Letters did express.
Though she seemed Coy, his Love she did not slight,
But Civil Answers did in Letters write.
At last so well acquainted they did grow,
That but one Heart each other's Thoughts did know.
Mean time their Parents did their Love's descry,
And sought all ways to break that Unity:
Forbad each other's company frequent;
Did all they could Love's Meetings to prevent.
But Love regards not Parents, nor their Threats;
For Love, the more 'tis barred, more Strength begets.
Thus being crossed, by stealth they both did meet,
And Privacy did make their Love more sweet;
Although their Fears did oft affright their Mind,
Lest that their Parents should their Walks out-find.
Then in the Kingdom did Rebellion spring,
Most of the Commons fought against their King:
And all the Gentry that then Loyal were,
Did to the Standard of the King repair.
Amongst the rest, this Noble Youth was one;
Love bade him stay, but Honour spurred him on:
When he declared his Mind, her Heart it rent;
Rivers of Tears out of her Eyes grief sent;
And every Tear, like Bullets, pierced his Breast,
Scattered his Thoughts, and did his Mind molest.
Silent long time they stood, at last spake he,
Why doth my Love with Tears so torture me?
Why do you blame my Eyes, said she, to weep,
Since they perceive you Faith nor Promise keep?
For, did you love but half so true as I,
Rather than part, you'd choose to stay and dye:
But you Excuses make, and take delight,
Like cruel Thieves, to rob and spoil by Night.
Now you have stole my Heart, away you run,
And leave a silly Virgin quite undone.
If I stay from the Wars, what will Men say?
They'll say, I make excuse to be away:
By this Reproach, a Coward I am thought;
And my Disgrace will make you seem in fault,
To set your Love upon a Man so base;
Bring Infamy to us, and to our Race.
To sacrifice my Life for your content,
I would not spare; but (Dear) in this consent,
'Tis for your sake Honour I strive to win,
That I some Merit to your Worth may bring.
If you will go, let me not stay behind,
But take such Fortune with you as I find:
I'll be your Page, attend you in the Field;
When you are weary, I will hold your Shield.
Dear Love, that must not be; for Women are
Of tender Bodies, and Minds full of Fear:
Besides, my Mind so full of Care will be,
For fear a Bullet should once light on thee,
That I shall never fight, but strengthless grow,
Through feeble Limbs be subject to my Foe.
When thou art safe, my Spirits high shall raise,
Striving to get a Victory of Praise.
With sad Laments these Lovers did depart;
Absence, as Arrows sharp, doth wound each Heart:
She spends her time, to Heaven-high doth pray,
That Gods would bless, and safe conduct his way.
The whilst he fights, and Fortune's Favour had,
Fame brings this Honour to his Mistress sad:
All Cavaliers that in the Army were,
There was not one could with this Youth compare:
By Love his Spirits all were set on fire,
Love gave him Courage, made his Foes retire.
But, O ambitious Lovers, how they run
Without all guidance, like Apollo's Son Phaeton,
Run out of Moderation's Line; so he
Did through the thickest of the Army flee
Singly alone, amongst the Squadrons deep
Fighting, sent many one with Death to sleep.
But Numbers, with united strength, at last,
This Noble Gallant Man from Horse did cast:
His Body all so thick of wounds was set,
Safety, it seems, in fight he did forget,
But not his Love, who in his Mind still lies;
He wished her there, to close his dying-Eyes.
Soul, said he, if thou wander in the Air,
Thy Service to my Mistress by thy care:
Attend her close, with her Soul Friendship make,
Then she perchance no other Love may take.
But if thou sink down to the Shades below,
And (being a Lover) to Elyzium go;
Perchance my Mistress Soul you there may meet,
So walk and talk in Love's Discourses sweet:
But if thou art like to a Light put out,
Thy Motion's ceased, then all's forgot no doubt.
With that a sigh, which from his Heart did rise,
Did mount his Soul up to the Airy Skies.
The whilst his Mistress being sad with care;
Her Knees were worn, imploring Gods with Prayer.
A Drowsy Sleep did all her Senses close,
But in her Dreams Fancy her Lover shows
With all his Wounds; which made her loud to cry,
Help, help, you Gods, said she, that dwell on high.
These fearful Dreams her Senses all did wake;
In a cold sweat, with fear, each Limb did shake.
Then came a Messenger as pale as Death,
With panting sides, swoln eyes, and shortened breath;
And by his looks, his sadder Tale did tell;
Which when she saw, straight in a swoon she fell:
At last her stifled Spirits had recourse
Unto their usual place, but of less force:
Then lifting up her Eyes, her Tongue gave way,
And thus unto the Gods did mourning say:
Why do we pray, and offer to high Heaven,
Since what we ask, is seldom to us given?
If their Decrees are fixed, what need we pray?
Nothing can alter Fates, nor cross their way.
If they leave all to Chance, who can apply?
For every Chance is then a Deity.
But if a Power they keep to work at will,
It shows them cruel to torment us still.
When we are made, in Pain we always live;
Sick Bodies, Grieved Minds, to us they give:
With Motions which run cross, composed we are,
Which makes our Reason and our Sense to jar.
When they are weary to torment us, must
We then return, and so dissolve to Dust?
But if I have my Fate in my own Power,
I will not breathe, nor live another hour:
Then with the Gods I shall not be at strife,
If my Decree can take away my Life.
Then on her feeble Legs she straight did stand,
And took a Pistol charged in either hand:
Here, Dear, (said she) I give my heart to thee,
And by my Death, divulged our Loves shall be;
Then Constant Lovers, Mourners be; when dead,
They'll strew our Graves, which is our Marriage-Bed:
Upon our Hearse a weeping-Poplar set,
Whose moistning-drops our Death's-dri'd Cheeks may wet.
Two Cypress Garlands at our Head shall stand,
That were made up by some fair Virgin's hand:
And on our cold pale Corps such Flowers strew,
As hang their Heads for grief, and downward grow.
Then shall they lay us deep in quiet Grave,
Wherein our Bones long Rest and Peace may have.
Let no Friends Marble-Tombs erect upon
Our Graves, but set young Mirtle-trees thereon:
Those may in time a shady Grove become,
Fit for sad Lovers Walks, whose Thoughts are dumb:
For Melancholy Love seeks place obscure,
No Noise nor Company it can endure:
And when to ground they cast a dull sad Eye,
Perhaps they'll think on us who therein lye:
Thus, though we're dead, our Memory remains;
And, like a Ghost, may walk in moving-Brains;
And in each Head Love's Altars for us build,
To sacrifice some Sighs, or Tears distilled.
Then to her Heart the Pistol set, she shot
A Bullet in, and so her Grief forgot.
Fame with her Trumpet blew in every Ear;
The sound of this great Act spread every where:
Lovers from all parts came, by the report;
Unto her Urn, as Pilgrims did resort:
There offered Praises of her Constancy,
And vowed the like unto Love's Deity.
A Woman said, That Tale expressed Love well,
And showed, that Constancy in Death did dwell.
Friendship, they say, a thing is so sublime,
That with the Gods there's nothing more Divine.
With wonder Lovers, having but one will,
Their two Bodies one Soul doth govern still:
And though they be always dis-joined much,
Yet all their Senses equally do t'uch:
For, what doth strike the Eye, or other part,
Begets in all like Pleasure, or like smart.
So though in Substance, Form divided be,
Yet Soul and Senses, joined in one, agree.
A Man that to the Lady placed was nigh,
Said, He would tell another Tragedy.
Humanity, Despair, and Jealousy, expressed in three Persons.
WAlking along, close by a River's side,
The Waters smooth ran with a flowing-tide:
The Sun thereon did dart such shining-light,
As made it than a Diamond-Chain more bright.
The purling-streams invited me to swim,
Pulled my Clothes off, then entered every Limb.
But envious Cold, alas, did me oppress,
And darting-arrows sharp me backwards press.
The River to embrace me, made great haste,
Her moist soft arms encircled round my waste.
Streams coming fast, strove there to force me stay,
But that my arms did make my body way.
My hands did strike the soft smooth Waters face,
As flattering them to give my body place.
But when I found them apt higher to rise,
Striving to stop my breath, and blind my eyes;
Then did I spread my arms, and Circles make,
And the united-streams asunder brake:
My Legs did kick away those Waters clear,
To keep them back, lest they should crowd too near:
And as I broke those Streams, they run away,
Yet fresh supplied their place, to make me stay:
Long did I struggle, and my strength did try,
At last got hold upon a Bank near by;
On whose side was a Hill where Trees were placed,
Which on the Waters did a shadow cast:
Thither I went; and when I came close by,
I saw a Woman there a weeping lye;
Which seeing, I began to slack my pace:
Straight did my Eyes view there a lovely Face
Under a Tree; close by the Root she sate,
Which with her Tears as falling-show'rs she wet:
At last she spake, and humbly thus did pray,
You Gods, said she, my Life soon take away:
No slander on my Innocence throw,
Let my pure Soul into Elyzium go:
If I drown here within this watery Lake,
O let my Tears a murmuring River make:
Give it both Voice and Words, my Grief to tell;
My Innocence, and why therein I fell.
Then straight she rose, the River leapt she in,
Which when I saw, I after her did swim:
My Hands, as Oars, did well my Body row,
Though panting-breath made waters rough to grow;
Yet was my Breast a Keel for to divide,
And by that help my Body swift did glide:
My Eyes the Needle to direct the way,
Which from the North of Grief did not estray;
She, as the Load-stone, drew me to her aid,
Though Storms within did make my Mind afraid.
Her Garments loose did on the Waters flow,
Which were puffed up like Sails when winds do blow.
I caught thereat, to draw her to the brink;
But when I went to pull, she down did sink:
Yet did not I my hold thereof let go,
But drew her to the Shore with much ado;
I panting with short breath, as out of wind,
My Spirits spent, my Eyes were dimly blind;
My strength so weak, forced me to lye down straight, did fill,
Because, alas, my Life was over-fraight.
When life got strength, my mind with thoughts
Then to the Lady used all art and skill;
Bowing her forwardsth' waters to let out,
Which from her Nose Mouth gushed like a spout:
At last her breath (before restrained) out-broke,
And thus to me she passionately spoke:
O who are you that do my Soul molest,
Not giving leave in Death to take my rest?
Is there no Peace in Nature to be found?
Must Misery and Fear attend us round?
O Gods, said she, here grant me my desire;
Here end my life, and let my breath expire.
I Answered.
Thus you with Nature set your self at odds;
And by this wish you do displease the Gods:
By violence you cut off their Decree,
No violence in Nature ought to be.
But what makes you thus strive for to destroy
That Life which God did give you to enjoy?
She Answered, O Sir
If you did know the torments I do feel;
My Soul is racked upon Ill Fortune's Wheel:
My Innocence by aspersion whipped,
And my pure Chastity of Fame is stripped:
My Love's neglected and forsaken quite,
Banished from that my Soul took most delight.
My Heart was placed upon a Valiant Man,
Who in the Wars much Honour bravely wan.
His actions all by wisdom placed were,
And his discourse delighted every Ear:
His Bounty, like the Sun, gave life and light
To those whom Misery had eclipsed quite.
This Man my Person seemed for to admire;
My Love before the World he did desire:
Told me, the Gods might sooner Heaven leave,
Than he forsake my love, or truth deceive.
But O vile Jealousy, a Lover's Devil!
Tormenting Thoughts with Suspicions evil;
Frighting the Mind with false Imaginations,
Burying all Joys in deepest Contemplations:
Long lay it smuther'd, but at last out-broke
With Hate; in Rage and Spleen base words it spoke.
Slander and Infamy in Circles round,
My innocent Youth with sharpest Tongues do wound:
But his Inconstancy did wound me more
Than Slander, Spite, or Malice did before:
For he another married, and left me
Clouded in dark Disgrace, black Infamy.
With that she fetched a Sigh; Heaven bless, said she,
This cruel unkind Man, who e're he be.
I faint, Death digs my Grave, O lay me in
This watery Monument; then may the Spring
In murmurs soft, with blubbering words relate,
And dropping weep at my Ill Fortune's Fate.
Then on a Groan her Soul with wings did fly
Up to the Heavens, and the Gods on high:
Which when I saw, my Eyes with grief did flow,
Although her Soul I thought to Heaven did go.
And musing long, at last I chanced to see
A Gentleman which handsome seemed to be.
He coming near, asked me who there did lie?
I said, 'Twas one for Love and Grief did die.
Hearing my words, he started back, Brows bent,
With trembling legs he to the Body went;
Which when he viewed, his blood fell from his face,
His Eyes were fixed, and standing in one place.
At last kneeled down, and thus did say,
No hope is left, Life's fled away.
Thou wandering Soul, where e're thou art,
Hear my Confession from my heart:
I loved thee better far than life,
Thought to be happy in a Wife:
But O Suspicion, that false Thief,
Seized on my Thoughts, ruling as Chief.
Suspicion, Malice, Spite, commanded still,
To carry false Reports thy Ears to fill.
My jealousy did strive thee to torment,
And glad to hear when thou wast discontent:
I strove always my love for to disguise;
'Twas. said I married was, when all were lies.
But Jealousy begets all actions base,
And in the Court of Honour hath no place.
Forgive me, Soul, where ever thou dost rest,
For, of all Women, I did love thee best.
Here I do offer up my life to thee,
Both dead, we in one Grave may buried be.
Swifter than Lightning, straight his Sword he drew,
Upon the Point himself he desperate threw;
And to his panting Breast made such dispatch,
That I no help could bring, on hold could catch:
Turning his pale and ghastly eyes to me,
Mix both our ashes in one Urn, said he.
With that he fell close by his Mistress side,
Embraced, and kissed, and groaned, and there he died:
Which when I saw, I dressed, my Clothes put on,
To celebrate their Funeral-Rites alone:
First, I did lay a heap of Cypress dry,
With striking Flints I made a fire thereby,
Laid both their Bodies thereupon to burn,
Which in short time did into ashes turn:
And being mixed, I took them thence away,
And dug a Grave those ashes in to lay:
Then did I gather Cockle-shells, though small,
With art I strove to build a Tomb withal;
Placing some on, others in even Lays,
Others joined close, till I a Tomb did raise.
And afterwards I planted Myrtle green,
Where Turtle-Doves are daily building seen:
And there young Nightingales come every Spring;
To celebrate their Fames, do sit and sing.
A Merry Lass, amongst the rest,
Began her Tale, and thus expressed:
A Master was in love with his fair Maid,
But of his scolding Wife was sore afraid:
For she in every place would watch and pry,
And peep through every Key-hole to espy;
And if she found them out, aloud would call,
And cry she was undone, her Maid had all
Her Husband's love, for she had none she was sure;
Wherefore this life she never would endure:
But he did woo his Maid still by his eye;
She, apprehensive, understood thereby;
And oft would find some work to come in place,
Because her Master should behold her Face;
Excuses make, that business she had great,
(Her business was, her Master for to meet).
With pretty smiles she trips it by,
And on him casts a kind-coy eye:
To all the House besides, would seem demure,
Oft singing Psalms, as if she were right pure;
Repeating Scripture, sigh, turn up her eyes,
As if her Soul straight flew unto the Skies,
And that her Body were as chaste cold Ice,
And she were only fit for Paradise:
Though her words were precise, her thoughts were not;
She, with her Master, Scripture quite forgot:
She then a Goddess was, prayed unto;
Her Master did, as Priests, with Offering woo:
Her Mistress, like to Juno, fret and frowned,
When that her Husband and her Maid she found;
And in the Clouds of Night would seek about,
Sometimes she mist them, sometimes found them out:
But when she did, Lord, what a noise was there!
How Jove and she did thunder in the air!
She with an Ishmael big away was sent;
Like unto Hagar, out of doors she went;
Where he, like Abraham good, a Bottle tied,
And gave her Means for the Child to provide:
Whereat her Mistress angry was, and cried;
And wished her Maid (like Ishma'l) might have died.
Another man, amongst the rest,
Said, they their Tales bad well expressed.
BUT they that study much, and seldom speak,
For want of use of words, are far to seek:
Their Tongue is like a rusty Key grown rough,
Which hardly turns, so do their words come forth:
Or like an Instrument that lies unstrung,
Till it be tuned, cannot be plaid upon:
For Custom makes the Tongue both smooth quick,
And moving oft, no words thereon will stick;
Like to a flowing-Tide, makes its own way,
Runs smooth or clear, without a stop or stay:
That makes a Lawyer plead well at the barr,
Because he talks there four parts of the year:
That makes Divines in Pulpits well to preach,
Because so often they the People teach:
But those that use to contemplate alone,
May have fine thoughts, good words to express, they none:
Good language they express in black and white,
Although they speak it not, yet well they write:
Much thoughts keep back the words from running out;
The tongue's ti'd up, the sluice is stopped no doubt:
For Fancy's quick, and flies such several ways,
For to be dressed in words it seldom stays.
Fancy is like an Eel, so slippery glides,
Before the tongue takes hold, away it slides.
Thus he that seldom speaks, is like to those
That travelling, their Mother-tongues do lose.
Now, says a Lady that was sitting by,
Pray let your rusty Tongue with silence lye,
And listen to the Tale that I shall tell;
Mark the Misfortunes that to them befell.
A Description of Love and Courage.
A Gentleman was riding all about,
As in a Progress, he chanced to spy out:
(Growing upon a rising-Hill) a Wood,
In midst whereof a little House there stood:
It was but small, yet was it wondrous fine,
As if 'twere builded for the Muses Nine:
The Platform was so well contrived, that there
Was ne'er a piece of ground lay waste or spare.
This House was built of pure rich Marble-stone,
And Marble-Pillars wholly stood upon;
So smooth 'twas polished, as like Glass it showed,
Which gave reflection to the Wood there grow'd.
Those Trees upon the Walls, seemed painted green,
Yet every Leaf thereon was shaking seen:
The Roofs therein were arched with artful skill,
Which over-head hung like a hanging-Hill;
And there a man himself might entertain
With his own words, rebounding back again.
The doors to every room were very wide,
And men, like Statues, carved on either side;
And in such lively postures made they were,
They seemed like Guards or Porters waiting there.
The winding-Stairs rising without account
Of any steps, up to the top did mount:
It on the Head a Cap of Lead did wear,
Like to a Cardinal's Cap, 'twas made four-square;
But flat it was; close to the Crown did lye,
From Cold and Heat it kept it warm and dry:
And in the midst, a Tower placed on high,
Like to Ulysses Monster, with one eye:
But standing there, did view through windows out,
On every side, fine Prospects all about.
When that his eyes were satisfied with sight,
And that his mind was filled with such delight,
He did descend back by another way,
Chance was his only Guide, which did convey
Him to a Gallery both large and long,
Where Pictures, by Apelles drawn, there hung,
And at the end, a Door half open, half shut,
Where, in a Chamber, did a Lady sit.
To him so beautiful she did appear,
She seemed an Angel, not a Mortal here:
Clothed all in white she was, and from her Head
Her Hair hung down, and on her Shoulders spread;
And in a Chair she sate, a Table by,
Leaning thereon, her Head did side-ways lye
Upon her Hand, the Palm a Pillow made,
On which, being soft, her Rosie Cheeks she laid;
And from her Eyes the Tears in showers did fall
Upon her Breast, sparkling like Diamonds all:
At last she fetched a sigh, Heart break, said she;
Gods take my Life, or give me Liberty:
When those words were expressed, she was constrained;
He courage took on what she there complained,
And boldly entering in, she seemed afraid;
He kneeling down, asked pardon, and thus said:
Celestial Creature, do not think me rude,
Or want of Breeding made me thus intrude;
But Fortune me unto this House did bring,
Whereby a Curiosity did spring
From my desires this House to view throughout,
Seeing such shady Groves to grow about:
And when I came near to the Gate, not one
Was there to ask or make opposition:
The House seemed empty, not a Creature stirring,
But every Room I entered, still admiring
The Architect and Structure of each part;
Those that designed, were skilful in that Art.
Wandering about, at last, Chance favouring me,
Hath brought me to this place, where I do see
ABeauty far beyond all Art, or any
That Nature heretofore hath made, though many
Of all the Sex creates she sweet and fair,
Yet never any of your Sex so rare:
This made me stand and gaze, amazed to see
What wondrous glorious things in Nature be.
But when I heard your words for to express
Some grief of heart, and wished for a redress,
My Soul flew to your service, here I vow
To Heaven high, my life to give to you;
Not only give my life, but for your sake
Suffer all Pains Nature or Hell can make:
Nor are my Proffers for a base Self-end,
I'm to your Sex a Servant and a Friend:
Pure is my Zeal, and my Flame being clear,
Choose me your Champion, and adopt me here.
If I cannot your Enemy destroy,
I'll do my best, no rest I will enjoy;
Because my Fortune, Life, and Industry,
I'll sacrifaice unto thy Liberty.
When that the Lady heard him speak so free,
And with such passion, and so honestly:
I do accept your Favour, Sir, said she,
For no Condition can be worse to me
Than this I now do live in; nor can I
My Honour hazard in worse Company:
Wherefore, to your protection I resign;
Heaven, O Heaven, prosper this Design.
But how will you dispose of me? pray tell.
I will, said he, convey you to a Cell
Which is hard by; and there will Counsel take
What way is best to make a clear escape:
With that, his Riding-Coat which he did wear,
He pulled straight off, which she put on; her Hair
She tied up short, and covered close her Face,
And in this posture stole out of that place.
An old ill-natur'd Bawd that did wait on her,
Being then asleep, did never think upon her.
But when sleep fled, awaked, she up did rise,
Sitting upon her Bed, rubbing her eyes
That were sealed up with Matter and with Rheum;
When that was done, she went into the Room
Wherein the Lady used, alone to be:
Straight missing her, cried out most piteously,
Calling the Servants to search all about;
But they unto a VVake were all gone out.
The Peasant's Ball is that we call a VVake,
When Men Maids do dance, and love do make;
And she that dances best, is crowned as Queen,
With Garlands made of Flowers, Laurel green:
Those Men that dance the best, have Ribbans ti'd
By every Maid that hopes to be a Bride.
Youth loves these kind of Sports, and to a Fair,
'Twill venture life, rather than not be there.
Which made the Servants all, although not many,
To be abroad, and leave the house for any
To enter in, which caused this escape,
And to the Owner brought so much mishap.
A Lord came galloping as from his Palace,
With pleasing thoughts, thinking alone to solace
Himself with his fair Mistress, who admired
Her Beauty more than Heaven, and desired
Her Favour more than Jove's; her angry words
Did wound him more than could the sharpest swords.
Her Frowns would torture him as on a Rack,
Muffling his Spirits in melancholy black:
But if she chanced to smile, his joys did rise
Much higher than the Sun that lights the Skies.
But riding on, the Castle coming nigh,
The Woman running about he did descry:
His heart misgave him, with doubts he alighted,
Asking the reason she was so affrighted:
She shook so much, no answer could she make;
He, being impatient, unto her thus spake:
Devil, said he, what is my Mistress dead,
Or sick, or stole away? or is she fled?
She kneeling down, cried out, O she is gone,
And I left to your Mercy all-alone.
With that he tore his hair, his breast did beat,
And all his body in a cold damp sweat;
Which made his Nerves to slack, his Pulse beat slow,
His strength to fail, so weak he could not go,
But fell upon the ground, seeming as dead,
Until his Man did bear him to a bed:
For he did only with him one Man bring,
Who proved himself trusty in every thing:
But when his diffused Spirits he did compose,
Into a deep sad Melancholy he grows;
Could neither eat, nor drink, nor take his rest,
His thoughts and passions being so oppressed.
At last this Lady and her Noble Guide,
Got to a place secure, yet forced to hide
Her self a time, till such Friends could make
That would protect Virtue for Vertue's sake;
Because her loving Foe was great in Power,
Which might a Friendless Innocent devour.
This Noble Gentleman desired to know
From what Misfortunes her restraint did grow.
Willing she was to tell the Gentleman
The story of her Life, and thus began:
After my birth, my Mother soon did dye,
Unto my Father leaving a Son and I:
My Father nor my Brother lived not long,
Then was I left alone; and being young,
My Aunt did take the charge to see me bred,
To manage my Estate; my Brother dead,
I was the only Child and Heir; but she
Was married to a Lord of High Degree,
Who had a Son, and that Son had a Wife,
They disagreed, led an unhappy Life.
When I was grown to sixteen years of age,
My Aunt did dye, her Husband did engage
To take the charge, and see me well bestowed,
And by his tender care great love he showed.
But such was my Misfortune, O sad Fate!
He died, and left me to his Son's VVife's hate;
Because this younger Lord grew much in Love,
Which when his Wife by circumstance did prove,
She sought all means she could to murder me;
Yet she would have it done with privacy:
The whilst her amorous Lord fresh Courtships made,
With his best Rhetoric, for to persuade
My honest Youth to yield to his desire,
My Beauty having set his heart on fire:
At last, considering with my self, that I
Having a plentiful Estate whereby
I might live honourable, safe, and free,
Not subject to be betrayed to slavery;
Then to the Lady and the Lord I went,
As a respect I told them my intent.
The Lady my Design she well approved;
He nothing said, but seemed with passion moved.
But afterwards, when I my leave did take,
He did rejoice, as if 'twere for my sake;
And so it was, but not unto my good,
For he with Treachery my ways withstood;
For as I travelled, he beset me round,
And forced me from my Servants, which he found
To be not many; when he had great store
For to assault, but my defence was poor.
Yet were they all disguised, no Face was shown,
(Such unjust acts desire to be unknown).
When I was in their power, Help, help, said I,
You Gods above, and hear a VVretch's Cry:
But no assistance from Heaven did I find,
All seemed as Cruel as the mad Mankind.
Then he unto the Castle me conveyed;
The Lord, himself discovering, thus said:
Cruellest of thy Sex, since no remorse
Can soften thy hard heart, I'll use my force;
Unless your heart doth burn with equal fire,
Or condescend to what I shall desire.
I for my own defence, against this abuse,
Soft flattering words was forced for to use;
Gently entreating his Patience, that I
A time might have my heavy heart to try;
That by persuasions it might entertain
Not only Love, but return Love again.
He seemed well-pleas'd, his temper calm did grow,
Which by his smiling-countenance he did show:
He said, If in your Favour I may live,
A greater blessing Heaven cannot give.
Then to a Woman old he gave the charge
For to attend, but not for to enlarge
My Liberty; with rules my Life did bind;
Nothing was free, but Thoughts within my Mind.
Thus did I live some half a year, and more,
And all this while the Gods on high implore;
For still he wooed, and still I did deny;
At last h'impatient grew, and swore that I
Deluded him, and that no longer would
He be denied, but yield to him I should.
With much entreaty I pacifi'd his Mind
With words and countenance that seemed kind;
But Prayers to Heaven more earnestly I sent
With tears and sighs, that they would still prevent,
By their great power, his Evil Design,
Or take away this loathed life of mine:
Although at first they seemed to be all deaf,
Yet now at last they sent me some relief.
The whilst the Champion Knight, with his fair Prize,
Was struck with Love by her quick-darting Eyes;
Yet moved they so as Modesty did guide,
Not turning wantonly, or leered aside:
Nor did they stern or proudly pierce,
But gentle, soft, with sweet commerce:
And when those Eyes were filled with watery streams,
Seemed like a Brook gilded with the Sun-beams;
At last perswading-Love prevailed so far,
As to present his Suit unto her care:
Fair Maid, I love thee, and my Love so pure,
That no corrupted thoughts it can endure:
My Love is honest, my Request is just;
For one Man's fault, do not all Men mistrust.
I am a Bachelor, and you a Maid,
For which we lawfully may love, he said:
Wherefore, dear Saint, cast not my Suit aside;
Choose me your Husband, and be you my Bride.
I am a Gentleman, and have been bred
As to my Quality; my Father dead,
Me his Possessions left, which are not small,
Nor yet so great to make me vain withal.
My Life is yet with an unspotted Fame;
Nor so obscure, not to be known by Name;
Amongst the best and most within this Land,
Favours received, yet none like your Command.
She stood a time, as in a musing-thought,
At last she spake, Sir, said she, you have brought
My Honour out of danger, and civilly
Have entertained me with your company;
For which I owe my life, much more my love;
Should I refuse, I should ungrateful prove.
'Tis not for Wealth that I would marry to,
Nor outward Honours that my Love can woo:
But it is Virtue, and a Heroic Mind,
A Disposition sweet, noble, and kind;
And such a one I judge you for to be,
Wherefore I'll not refuse, if you choose me.
When they were thus agreed, they did repair
Unto his House, and went to marry there:
The whilst the Lord, the Kingdom all about,
He privately had sent to search her out.
At last news came, with whom, and where she dwelt;
With that much grief within his heart he felt,
That any Man should have her in his power;
He, like a Devil, could his Soul devour.
But when he heard the Messenger to say,
There's preparation against her Wedding-day;
He grew outrageous, cursed Heaven and Earth,
The Marriage of his Parents, and his Birth:
At last he did resolve, what e're befell,
That he would have her, though he sank to Hell.
When he had got a Company together,
Such as he fed, that would go any whither;
No act they would refuse, that he desired,
Obeyed most desperately what he required.
Unto his House they went in a disguise,
Intending then the Lady to surprise:
But be'ng upon her Wedding-day, were there
A Company of Guests that merry were;
This Lord desired to part them, if he might,
Because lye together they should not that Night.
So in they went: the Servants all did think
Them Maskerades, and made them all to drink:
But when they went into an inward Room
Where all were dancing, Bride and the Bridegroom;
The Bride acquainted with that Maskard-sight,
She ran away as in an extreme fright:
The Bridegroom soon imagined what they were,
And, though unarmed, his Courage knew no fear.
Their Swords they drew, aimed only at his life;
That done, they thought to get away his Wife:
His Hat and Cloak, Arms of Defence did make;
The Tongs, for to assault, he up did take:
The Women scriecht, Murder, Murder, cried out;
The Men flung all the Chairs and Stools about,
With which they did resist, and did oppose,
For some short time, the Fury of his Foes.
It chanced a Sword out of a hand did fall;
The Bridegroom straight took't up fought withal;
So well did manage it, and with such skill,
He many of his Enemies did kill:
Yet he was wounded sore, and out of breath;
But heat of Courage kept out dull cold Death.
At last his Friends got Arms to take his part,
Who did the oppression of his Foes divert.
The Vizard of the Lord fell off at length;
Which when the Bridegroom saw, with vigorous strength,
He ran upon him with such force, that he
Struck many down, to make his passage free.
The trembling Bride was almost dead with fear,
Yet for her Husband had a listening ear.
At last the noise of Murder did arrive:
O is he dead, said she, and I alive!
With that she run with all her power and might,
Into the Room, her Husband then in fight
With her great Enemy; and where they stood,
The Ground was like a foaming Sea of Blood;
Wounded they were, yet was each other's heart
So hot with Passion, that they felt no smart.
The Bride did pass and re-pass by their Swords,
As quick as flashing Lightning, and her words
Cried out, Desist, desist, and let me dye,
It is decreed by the great Gods on high,
Which nothing can prevent; then let my fall
Be an Atonement to make Friends withal.
But Death and Courage being long at strife
About her Husband's Honour and his Life,
They both did fall, and on the ground did lye;
But honoured Courage received Fame thereby.
When Death had turned out his Life, it went
Into his Fame, and built a Monument.
The Bride, when that she saw her Husband faint,
She weeping mourned, and made a sad complaint:
O Gods, said she, grant me but this Request,
That I may dye here on my Husband's breast.
With that she fell, and on his Lips did lye,
Sucked out each other's breath, and so did dye.
When that the Lover saw her Soul was fled,
And that her body was cold, pale, and dead;
Then he impatient grew his Life to hold,
With desperate Fury then both fierce and bold,
He gave himself a mortal wound, and so
Fell to the ground, and sick did grow.
Then did he speak to all the Company,
I do entreat you all for Charity,
To lay me by my Mistress in a Grave,
That my free Soul may rest and quiet have:
With that a Voice heard in the air to say,
My Noble Friends, you ought to disobey
His dying-words; for if you do not so,
From our dead ashes jealousy will grow:
But howsoe're, their Friends did so agree,
That they did put them in a Grave all three:
And ever since fierce Jealousy doth rage
Throughout the World, and shall from age to age.
A Bachelor that spiteful was, and old,
Unto the Company his Tale he told.
WOmen care not, nor seek for Noble Praise;
All their delight runs to Romantic ways;
To be in love, and be beloved again;
And to be fought-for by the youngest men,
Not for their Virtue, but their Beauty fair,
Entangling men within their amorous snare,
And turning up their Eyes, not for to pray,
Unless it be to see their Love that day:
With whining Voice, and foolish words implore
The Gods; for what? unless to hold the door.
And what is their desire, if I should guess,
I straight should judge it tends to wantonness:
Perchance they'll say, It is for Conversation;
But those Conversations bring Temptation.
What Youth's in love with Age, where wisdom dwells,
That all the follies of wild Youth still tells?
But Youth will shun grave Age's Company,
And from them fly as from an Enemy.
Say they, Their wit is all decayed and gone;
And, that their wit is out of fashion grown:
Say, they are peevish, froward, and displeased,
And full of pain, and weak, and oft diseased.
But that is fond excuse to plead for Youth:
For Age is Valiant, Prudent, full of truth:
And Sickness often on the Young takes hold,
Making them feeble, weak, before they're old.
If Women love, let it be for the sake
Of Noble Virtue, and the wiser take;
Else Virtue is depressed, forsaken quite,
For she allows no Revellers of Night.
This Sex doth strive by all the art they can,
To draw away each other's Courtly-Man.
And all the allurements that they can devise,
They put in execution for the prise.
Their Eyes are quick, and sparkling like the Sun,
Yet always after Mankind do they run:
Their words are smooth, their faces in smiles dressed;
Their heart is by their countenance expressed:
But in their older age they spiteful grow,
And then they scorns upon their youngers throw;
Industrious are, a false Report to make:
Lord! Lord! what poor Employments Women take
To carry Tales on Tongues. from Ear to Ear,
Which faster run than Dromedaries far:
In heat, with speed and haste they run about
From House to House, to find their Comrades out:
And when they meet, so earnest they are bent,
As if the Fate's Decrees they could prevent:
The best is Rubbish; they their Minds do load
With several Dresses, and what is the Mode:
But if they spiteful are, they straight defame
Those that most Virtue have, or honoured Name;
Or else about their Carriage they find fault,
And say their Dancing-Masters were stark nought.
But for their several Dressings, thus will say,
How strangely such a one was dressed to day!
And if a Lady dress, or chance to wear
A Gown to please her self, or curl her Hair,
If not according as the Fashion runs,
Lord, how it sets a-work their Eyes and Tongues!
Straight she's fantastical, they all do cry,
Yet they will imitate her presently;
And for what they did laugh at her in scorn,
With it think good themselves for to adorn.
Thus each of them doth into other pry,
Not for to mend, but to find fault thereby.
With that the Women rose, and angry were,
And said, they would not stay such Tales to hear.
But all the Men upon their Knees did fall,
Begging his Pardon, and their stay withal.
And Women's Natures being easy, free,
Did soon consent to keep them company.
The Tale to tell,
Unto a Woman's turn befell:
And when their rustling twatling Silks did cease,
Their creaking Chairs, and Whisperings held their peace;
The Lady did a Tragic Tale unfold,
Forcing their Eyes to weep, whilst she it told.
The Description of the Fondness of Parents, and the Credulity of Youth.
A Gentleman had lived long, and was old,
A Wife he had, which Fifty years had told:
Their Love was such, as Time could not decay;
Devout they were, and to the Gods did pray:
Yet Children they had none to bless their Life;
She happy in a Husband, h'in a Wife.
But Nature, in the World her Power to show,
From an old Stock caused a young Branch to grow:
At length this aged Dame a Daughter bore,
Got by her Husband when Threescore, and more.
They are so joyed, they Nature's Bounty praise,
And thank the Gods that did the Issue raise.
They were so fond, that none this Child must t'uch,
Only themselves; their pains they thought not much.
She gave it suck, and dressed it on her Lap,
The whilst he warmed the Clouts, then cooled the Pap.
They, when it slept, did by the Child abide,
Both sitting near the Cradle on each side.
But when it cried, he danced it on his Arm,
The whilst she sung, its Passion for to charm.
Thus did they strive to please it all they could,
And for its good yield up their Lives they would.
With pains and care they Nursed their Daughter well,
And with her Years her Beauty did excel.
But when she came to Sixteen years of age,
Her Youth and Life by Love she did engage
Unto a Gentleman that lived hard-by
Close to her Father's House, who seemed to dye
If he enjoyed her not; yet did he dread
His Father's Curse to light upon his Head;
His Father to his Passion being cruel,
Although he was his only Son and Jewel;
Charging, upon his blessing, not to marry
This fairest Maid; nor Servants for to carry
Letters or Tokens, Messages by stealth;
Despising her, because of no great Wealth:
Yet she was Nobly born, not very poor,
But had not Wealth to equal his great store.
But he did woo his Love in secret guise,
Courting her privately for fear of Spies.
He strove to win her unto his embraces;
Muffle the Faults he would, and the Disgraces.
Said he,
Why may not we our Senses all delight?
Our Senses and our Souls Heaven unite
That we call Honour, only Man creates,
For it was never destined by the Fates.
It is a word Nature ne'er taught us, nay
It is a Precept she forbids to obey.
Then follow Nature, for that follows God,
And not the Arts of Men, they're vain and odd.
Let every Sense lye steep, not drowned, in pleasure:
Let us keep up their height in balanced measure.
First, let our Eyes all Beauteous Objects view;
Our Ears all Sounds, which Notes and Times keep true.
Then Scent all Odours to refresh the Brain;
With Tastes delicious Palates entertain.
Touch things most pleasing, that all Parts may feel
Expansion of the Soul, from Head to Heel:
Thus we shall use what Nature to us gave;
For by restraint, in Life we dig our Grave:
And in the Grave our Senses useless lye;
Just so is Life, if Pleasures we deny.
Thus Heaven, that gave us Sense, may take it ill,
If we refuse what's offered to us still:
Then let our Sense and Souls take all delight,
Not to surfeit, but feed each Appetite.
Come Pleasure, Circle me within thy Arms,
Enchant my Soul with thy delightful Charms.
Said she, It is not always in our Power
To feed, Delight, nor Pleasure to devour.
Man no free Power hath of any thing;
Only himself can to destruction bring:
Can kill his Body, and his Soul can damn,
Although he cannot alienate the same;
Nor can he make them always to remain,
Nor turn them to what they were first again.
Thus can we cross and vex our selves with pain,
But being sick, cannot be well again:
We can Disturb great Nature's work at will;
But to Restore and Make, is past our skill.
But he did plead so hard, such Vows did make,
Such large Professions, and such Oaths did take,
That he would constant be, and that his Bride
He would her make, when that his Father died:
She, young and innocent, knew no deceits,
Nor thought that Words and Vows were used as baits.
So yielded she to all he did desire,
Thinking his Vows as much as Laws require.
But they so oft did meet, till it befell,
She sick did grow, her Body big did swell;
Which she took care to hide, and would not be,
As she was wont, in other Company:
But to her Parents she would often cry,
And said she swelled so, with a Tympany.
They did believe her, and did make great moan,
Their only Child was now so sickly grown.
His Father old, the Marriage to prevent,
Now, in all haste, his Son to travel sent;
Gave him no time nor warning to be gone;
Nor, till he saw him shipped, left him alone.
But he, to ease his Mistress of her fear,
For to return, he only now took care.
But she no sooner heard that he was gone,
But in her Chamber locked her self alone;
Complained against her Destiny and Fate,
And all her Love to him was turned to Hate.
You Gods, said she, my Fault's no wilful sin;
For I did think his Vows had Marriage been:
But by his stealth, so privately to leave me,
I find my Crime, and that he did deceive me:
For which, said she, you Gods torment him more
Than ever any Man on Earth before.
With that she rose, about her Neck she flung
A Silken String, and in that String she hung.
Her Parents to her Chamber did repair,
Calling her forth to take the fresh sweet air;
Supposing it might do her Health some good;
And at her Chamber door long time they stood:
But when they called, and knocked, no answer made,
She being sick, they' began to be afraid:
Their Limbs did shake with age, Nerves being slack't,
Those Nervous Strings with fear were now contract:
At last, though much ado they had to speak,
They Servants called to open, or to break
The Lock: No sooner done, but with great fear
They entered in; and after they were there,
The horrid sight no sooner struck their Eyes,
But it congealed their Hearts, and straight both dyes.
The Fame of their sad Fates all round was spread,
The Lover heard his Mistress then was dead;
His Clothes, his Hair he tore, his Breast did beat,
His Spirits issued out in a cold Sweat.
Said he, O cursed Death come kill me quick,
And in my Heart thy Spear or Arrow stick;
Because my Love in thy cold Arms doth lye,
I now desire, nay, am resolved to dye.
But O! Love is a powerless God; in vain
He strives with's Flame to melt Death's Icy Chain:
For though with Love my Heart so hot doth burn,
Yet cannot melt, I fear Death's Icy Urn.
Then he all in a rage to the Earth fell,
And there invoking up the Devils of Hell,
Saith he, Ye Powerful Terrors me assist,
For to command or force Death when I list,
That by your help and power my Love may rise
From the dark Vault or Grave wherein she lies;
Or else by Death's cold hand alone,
Convert me into Marble-stone.
Then running, as distracted, in and out,
By Fancies, Visions strange saw all about:
And crying loud, My Mistress, she is there;
He seemed to catch, but grasped nought else but air:
See, see her Ghost, how it doth slide away,
Her Soul is pure, and shines as glorious Day.
But my foul Soul, which is as black as Night,
Doth shadows cast upon the Soul that's bright;
Which makes her walk as in a gloomy shade,
Like Shadows which the Silver Moon hath made.
Hark how my Love sings sweetly in the Sky,
Her Soul is mounted up to Heavens high,
And there it shall be made a Deity,
And I a Devil in Hell tormented lye.
His spirit being spent, fell to the ground;
And lying there a while, as in a swooned,
At last he rose, and with a sober pace
He bent his steps, as to her burying-place;
And with his Cloak he muffled him about,
His Hatpull'd over his Brows, his Eyes looked out
To guide his way; but far he had not gone,
That straight he saw the Funerals coming on:
Three Hearses all were born, as on a breast,
Black covered two, with white the third was dressed:
A Silver Crown upon that Hearse did stand,
And Myrtle-boughs young Virgins bore in hand:
The graver sort did Cypress-branches bear,
The mournful Parents death for to declare.
With solemn Music to the Grave them brought;
With Tears in-urn'd their Ashes in a Vault:
But he, before the People did return,
Did make great haste to get close to the Urn;
His Hat pulls off, then bows, lets loose his Cloak;
With dropping Eyes, countenance sad, thus spoke:
You charitable Friends, whoever you be,
To see the Dead thus buri'd solemnly;
The like to me your Favour I do crave,
Stay all, and see me buri'd in this Grave.
Giving himself a private wound, there fell
Into the Grave; and dying, there did tell
Of his sad Love; but now, said he,
Our Souls nor Bodies ne'er shall parted be.
With that he sighs, and breathing out his last,
About his Mistress Corps his Arms he cast.
The Urn sealed up, his Friends a Tomb did build;
Famous it was, such Love therein it held.
Most Parents do rejoice, and Offerings bring
Of thankful Hearts, or Prayers for their Off-spring.
These thought their Age was blessed; but they were blind
With Ignorance, and great affections kind,
More than with Age; but who knows Destiny?
Or thinks that Joy can prove a Misery?
Some Parents love their Wealth more than their Breeds,
Hoording up more than Love or Nature needs:
And rather than poor Virtue they will take,
By crossing Love, Childless themselves will make.
A sober Man, who had a thinking-Brain,
Of Vice and Vanity did thus complain:
'TIS strange to see the Follies of Mankind,
How they for useless things do vex their Mind:
For what superfluous is, serves them for nought;
And more than necessary is a fault:
Yet Man is not content with a just measure,
Unless he surfeits with Delight and Pleasure;
As if true Pleasure only lived in Pain,
For in Excess Pain only doth remain:
Riches bring Care to keep, Trouble to spend;
Beggars and Borrowers have ne'er a Friend:
And Hospitality is oft diseased,
And seldom any of their Guests are pleased:
In Feasts, much Company disturbs the rest,
And with much noise it doth the Life molest.
Much Wine and Women makes the Body sick;
And Doting-Lovers they grow Lunatic.
Playing at Cards and Dice, Men Bankrupts grow,
And with the Dice away their Time they throw,
Their Manly Strength, their Reason, and their Wit,
Which might in Wars be spent, or Letters writ.
All Generosity seems buried here;
Gamesters seem Covetous, as doth appear:
But when they spend, most prodigally wast,
As if their Treasures were the Indies vast,
Or else their Purse an endless Mine of Gold;
But they'll soon find it doth a bottom hold.
Titles of Honour, Offices of State,
Bring Trouble, Envy, and Malicious Hate.
Ceremony restrains our Freedom, and
State-Offices Commands, Men tottering stand.
And Vanities Inchanters of the Mind,
That muffle Reason, and the Judgment blind;
Do lead the life in strange fantastic ways,
To seek that Pleasure which doth live in Praise.
Praise is no real thing, an empty Name,
Only a Sound which we do call a Fame;
Yet for this Sound Men always are at strife,
Do spend their Fortunes, and do hazard Life:
They give their Thoughts no rest, but hunt about,
And never leave until the Life goes out.
That Man that seeks in Life for more than Health,
For Rest and Peace within his Commonwealth,
(Which is his Family) sure is not wise,
And know not where true Happiness still lies.
Nor doth he guess that Temperance doth give
The truest Pleasure, makes it longest live.
You Gods, said he, give me a Temperate Mind,
An Humble Cottage, a Chaste Wife and Kind,
To keep me Company, to bear a part
Of all the Joys or Sorrows of my Heart;
And let our Labours, Recreations be,
To pass our Time, and not a Misery.
Banish all Cares, you Gods, let them not lye
As heavy burdens; and when we must dye,
Let's leave the World, as in a quiet Sleep;
Draw gently out our Souls, our Ashes keep
Safely in Urns; not separate our Dust,
Or mix us so, if transmigrate we must,
That in one Body we may still remain;
When that's dissolved, make us up new again.
A Lady said, She his Discourse would fit;
A Story tell that should his Humour hit.
THere was a Man and Woman married were,
They lived just so as should a Married Pair;
Though their Bodies divided were in twain,
Their Souls agreed, as one they did remain:
They did so mutually agree in all,
This Man and Wife we only One may call.
They were not rich, nor were they very poor;
Not pinched with want, nor troubled with great store.
They did not labour for the Bread they eat,
Nor had they various or delicious Meat;
Nor many Servants had to vex their Mind,
Only one Maid that faithful was, and kind;
Whose Work was just so much as to employ
Her so, as Idleness might not her annoy.
Thus decently and cleanly did they live,
And something had for Charity to give.
Her Pastime was to spin in Winter cold,
The whilst he read, and to her Stories told:
And in the pleasant Spring, fresh air to take,
To Neighbouring-Villages short Journeys make.
In Summer-Evenings they the Fields did round,
Or sit on Flow'ry-banks upon the ground:
And so, in Autumn they their walks did keep,
To see Men gather Grapes, or sheer their Sheep.
Nor did they miss Jove's Temple, once a day,
Both kneeling down unto the Gods to pray
For gracious Mercy, their poor Souls to save,
A healthful Life, an easy Death to have.
Thus did they live full forty years, and more;
At last Death comes, and knocks at the door,
And with his Dart he struck the Man full sick,
For which the Wife was almost Lunatic:
But she with care did watch, great pains did take;
Broths, Julips, Jellies, she with skill did make.
She most industrious was his pains to ease,
Studying always his Humour for to please:
For oft the sick are peevish, froward, cross,
And with their pains do tumble, groan, and toss,
On their sad Couches; quietly he lay,
And softly to himself to Heaven did pray.
Yet was he melancholy at the heart,
For nothing else, but from his Wife to part.
But when she did perceive his Life decay,
Close by his side, upon a Bed she lay,
Embraced and kissed him oft, until his Breath
And Soul did part, drawn forth by powerful Death:
Art gone, said she? then I will follow straight;
For why, my Soul upon thy Soul shall wait.
Then turned her self upon the other side,
In breathing-sighs and show'ring-tears she died.
A Single-Life best.
A Man said, He lived a most happy Life,
Because he was not tied unto a Wife:
Said he, Marriage at best obstructs the Mind.
With too much Love, or Wives that are unkind.
Besides, a Man is still tied by the heel,
Unto the Cradle, Bed, Table, and Wheel;
And cannot stir, but, like a Bird in string,
May hop a space, but cannot use his wing.
But those who're free, and not to Wedlock bound,
They have the liberty the World to round;
And in their Thoughts much Heavenly Peace doth dwell,
When Marriage makes their Thoughts like pains of Hell.
And when they die, no Care doth grieve their Mind,
For any thing that they shall leave behind.
A Lady said, If Women had but Wit,
Men neither Wives nor Mistresses should get:
No cause should have to murmure and complain,
If Women their kind Freedom would restrain.
But Marriage is to Women far more worse
Than 'tis to Men, and proves the greater Curse:
And I, said she, for proof, a Tale will tell,
What to a Virtuous Married Wife befell.
THere once a Lord and Lady married were,
And for Seven years did live a Happy Pair:
He seem;d to love his Wife, as well he might,
For she was Modest, Virtuous, Fair, and Bright;
A Disposition suitable and kind;
No more Obedience Man in Wife could find:
She did esteem him so, and prized him such,
Of Merit, she thought no Man had so much;
And loved him more than Life loved perfect Health,
Or Princes for to rule a Commonwealth.
But such the Natures of most Husbands be,
That they love Change, and seek Variety;
Or else like Fools or Children, eas'ly caught
With pleasing looks, or flattering tongues are brought
From Virtues side, in wicked ways to run,
And seldom back with Virtue do return.
But Misery may drive them back again,
Or else with Vices they do still remain.
It chanced this Lord a Lady fair did meet,
Her Countenance was pleasing, Speech was sweet;
And from her Eyes such wanton Glances went,
As from her Heart Love-Messages had sent;
Whereby this Lord was caught in Cupid's Snare,
How to address, he only now takes care.
But he straight had access, and Courtships makes,
The Lady in his Courtships pleasure takes;
And Pride she takes, that she could so allure
A Husband from a Wife, that was so pure
As Heaven's Light, and had the Praise and Fame
Of being the most Fair and Virtuous Dame.
At last this Lady by her wanton Charms,
Enchanted had this Lord, till in his arms
He might embrace her in an amorous way,
His Thoughts were restless, working Night and Day
To compass his Designs; nor did he care
To lose his Wife's affection, but did fear
His Mistress to desplease; and as her Slave,
Obeyed her will in all that she would have.
But she was subtle, and of Nature bad;
A crafty Wit, in making Quarrels, had:
For which she seemed to be Coy and Nice,
And sets her Beauty at so great a price,
That she would never yield unless that he
From his Chaste Wife would soon divorced be:
Straight he, to please her, from his Wife did part,
For which his Wife was grieved at the Heart,
And sought her self obscurely for to hide,
And in a solitary House did 'bide,
As if she had a grievous Criminal been,
Or Causer was of his adulterous Sin;
And for a Penance, she did strictly live;
But she was Chaste, and no offence did give:
Yet she in sorrow lived, no rest could find,
Sad melancholy thoughts moved in her Mind:
Most of her time in Prayers she did spend,
Which as sweet Incense did to Heavens ascend;
Did often for her Husband Mercy crave,
That they would pardon all his Faults, and save
Him from Destruction, and that they would give
Him Happy Days as long as he should live.
But after he his Mistress had enjoyed,
And that his Amorous Appetite was cloyed;
Then on his Virtuous Wife his Thoughts did run,
The later Lady he did strive to shun:
For often they did quarrel and fall out;
He gladly would be rid of her, no doubt.
At last he was resolved his Wife to see,
And to be Friends, if that she would agree.
But when he saw his Wife, his Heart did ache,
As being guilty, all his Limbs did shake:
The terror of his Conscience did present
To him her wrongs, but yet to her he went.
She being set near to a Fountain low,
Her Tears did make the Stream to overflow.
Thither he came, and on the Earth did kneel,
But in his Soul such passions did he feel
Of Shame, Fear, Sorrow, as he could not speak:
At last his Passion through his Lips did break,
Begging her Pardon, and great Vows did make
Of Reformation, and that for her sake
He would all Pain or Punishment endure,
And that no Husband should to Wife be truer.
Which when she heard, she sighing, did reply,
You come too late, my Destiny is over-fraught,
My Bark of Life with Grief is over-fraught,
And ready is to sink with its own weight:
For showers of Tears, and stormy Sighs do blow
Me to the Ports of Death, and Shades below.
He being affrighted at the word she spake,
In haste he rose, her in his arms did take:
Wherewith she pleased, and smiling, turned her Eye
Upon his Face, so in his arms did dye.
And being dead, he laid her on the ground;
He in the Fountain, and her Tears, was drowned.
Impatiently in a high discontent
There died, so had a watery Monument.
Another Lady said, Such Men I hate
That wrong their Wives, and then repent too late.
But all Adulterers I wish might have
A Violent Death, and an Untimely Grave.
The next Man's turn to speak was one that in
The Wars was bred; and thus be did begin:
A Description of Natural Affection.
THere were two Potent Princes, whose great Fames
For Actions in the Wars got mighty Names.
It chanced these Potent Princes both did greet,
And were resolved in open Wars to meet,
Their Courages to try, their Strengths and Power,
Their prudent Conducts, or their fatal Hour.
In short, these Armies meet, a Battle fight,
Where one Side beaten was by Fortune's spite.
The Battle won, that Army routed, ran,
And for to save his Life, strove every Man,
And their Artillery they left behind,
Each for himself a shelter hoped to find.
When from pursuit the Victors did come back,
The Solidiers for to plunder were not slack:
And every Tent they searched, and sought about
To see if they some Treasure could find out.
To th'Prince's Tent did some Commanders go,
Where they did find an Object of much wo.
That Prince being dead, upon the ground was laid,
And by him sate a fair and sweet young Maid:
Her Beauty was so splendrous, and so bright,
Through Clouds of Grief, it shone like Heavens light.
Which the Commanders saw, then straight did go
To let their General of this Beauty know.
Who when he came, amazed was in mind,
Such Beauty for to see, and Grief to find.
For this fair Princess by her Father set,
Her Eyes being fixed, her Tears his Cheeks did wet;
She leaning over his Head, her Eyes down bend,
From whence her Tears upon his Face descend.
Upon his Mouth such deep-fetch'd sighs did breathe,
As if therein her Soul she would bequeath;
For which this General did her admire,
Her Tears quenched not, but kindle did Love's Fire.
With that he did command the Solidiers there,
The Dead to take, the Body up to bear.
But then she spake: For pity have remorse,
Remove not from me my dead Father's Corpse:
For had not Fortune (which he never trust
With any business, but what needs he must)
Conspired with Death to work his overthrow,
His wisdom crossing her, she grew his Foe.
But all her Spite could never do him harm,
For he with Prudence still himself did arm:
But when that Death assisted her Design,
She struck him dead when Battles were to join;
His Solidiers forced to fight, when that their Mind
Was pressed with grief, which fast the Spirits did bind;
It was his Death that made him lose the Day,
And made you Victors that now wear the Bay.
But look, said she, his Hands now strengthless lye,
In fight which made his Enemies to fly:
His Eyes, now shut by Death, in Life gave light
Unto his Soldiers, in the Wars to fight.
His Tongue, that silenced is by Death's cold Hand,
In Life moved wisely, and could well command:
It Knowledge gave to those that little knew,
And did instruct what was the best to do.
His Heart lies still, no Motion doth remain:
Ceased are the Thoughts in his well-temper'd Brain;
Where in his Heart all Virtues did abide,
And in his Brain strong Reason did reside:
But all is vanquished now, and Life doth seem
No better than a Shadow, or a Dream.
'Tis strange in Nature to observe and see
The unproportion'd Links in Destiny.
For Man's the wisest Creature Nature makes,
And best Extracts to form his Figure takes;
And yet so short a Life to him she gives,
He's almost dead before he knows he lives:
Yet she from Man receives the greatest praise,
He doth admire all her curious ways:
With wonder he her several Works doth see,
And studies all her Laws, and each Decree;
Doth travel several ways within his Mind,
His Thoughts are restless, her Effects to find.
But in his Travels Death cuts him off short,
And leads him into dark Oblivion's Court.
Thus Nature is unjust, Heaven unkind,
Which strikes the Best, the Worst do favour find.
My Father's Merits might have challenged still
A longer Life, had it been Heavens will.
But he is dead, and I am left behind,
Which is a torture to my troubled Mind.
If Soldiers pity have, grant my desire,
Here strike me dead, and let my Breath expire.
Said the Victorious Prince:
Heaven forbid! all horrid Acts we shun;
For in the Field the purest Honour's won:
We stake our Lives for Lives, and justly play
A Game of Honour on a Fighting-Day.
Perchance some Cheats may be among the Rout,
But if they're found, the Noblest throw them out.
But since you cannot alter Destiny,
Nor none that live, but have some Misery;
Raise up your Spirits, unto Heaven submit,
And do not here in Grief and Sorrow sit.
Your Father was a Soldier of great Fame,
His Valiant Deeds did get an Honoured Name:
And for his sake judge us, which Soldiers be,
To have Human'ty, and Civility.
Your Father he shall safely be conveyed,
That he may be by his Ancestors laid.
But you must stay, yet not as Prisoner;
You shall Command and Rule our Peace and War.
She answered not in words, her Tears did plead,
That she with her dead Father might be freed:
But her clear Advocates could not obtain
Their humble Suit, but there she must remain
With the Victorious Prince; but he denied,
As Victor, in a Triumph for to ride:
For though the Battle I have won, he said,
Yet I am Prisoner to this Beauteous Maid.
She is the Conqueress, therefore 'tis fit
I walk as Prisoner, she Triumphant sit.
Then all with great Respects to her did bow;
So doth the Prince, and plead, protest, and vow,
To be her Servant, and to yield his Life
To Death's sad strokes, unless she'd be his Wife.
But she still weeps, his Suit no favour gains;
Of Fates and Destiny she still complains.
Why, said the Prince, should you my Suit deny,
Since I was not your Father's Enemy?
Soldiers are Friends, though they each blood do spill,
'Tis not for Spite, nor any Malice ill;
But Honour to maintain, and Power to get,
And that they may in Fame's House higher set:
For those of greatest Power, to Gods draw near;
For nought but Power makes Men like Gods appear.
But had I killed your Father in the Field,
Unto my Suit in Justice you might yield.
But I was not the Cause your Father died,
For Victory doth still with him abide:
And though that Death stid strike him to the heart,
Yet his great Name and Fame will never part.
Men will suppose the Loss is loss of Life,
And had he lived, there would be greater strife
Between our Armies; but if you'll be mine,
Our Kingdoms in a Friendly Peace shall join.
Then she began to listen, and give ear;
She of her Country in distress took care:
And in short time they were both Man and Wife;
Long did they live, and had a happy Life.
The next, a Virgin's turn her Tale to tell;
Her Youth and Modesty did fit it well.
The Surprise of DEATH.
A Company of Virgins young did meet,
Their Pastime was, to gather Flowers sweet:
They white Straw-Hats upon their Heads did wear,
And falling-Feathers, which wav'd with the air,
Fanning their Faces, like a Zephyrus Wind,
Shadowing the Sun, that strove their Eyes to blind;
And in their Hands they each a Basket held,
Which Baskets they with Fruits or Flowers filled:
But one amongst the rest such Beauty had,
That Venus for to change might well be glad.
Her Shape exact, her Skin was smooth and fair;
Her Teeth white, even set, a long curled Hair:
Her Nature modest, her Behaviour so,
As when she moved, the Graces seemed to go.
Her Wit was quick, and pleasing to the Ear,
That all who heard her speak, straight Lovers were.
But yet her Words such Chaste Love did create,
That all Impurity they did abate.
And every heart or head where wild Thoughts live,
She did convert, and wise Instructions give:
For her Discourse such heavenly Seeds did sow,
That where she strewed, there Virtues up did grow.
These Virgins all were in a Garden set,
And each did strive the finest Flowers to get.
But this fair Lady on a Bank did lye
Of most choice Flowers, which did court her Eye;
And every one did bend their heads full low,
Bowing their Stalks, which from the Roots did grow;
And when her hands did touch their tender Leaves,
Each seemed to kiss, and to her Fingers cleaves.
But she, as if in Nature 'twere a Crime,
Was loath to crop their Stalks in their full prime;
But with her Face close to those Flowers lay,
That through her Nostrils those Sweets might find way;
Not for to rob them, for her head was full
Of Flowery Fancies, which her wit did pull,
And Posies made, the World for to present
With a more lasting and a sweeter Sent.
But as she lay upon this pleasant Bank,
For which those Flowers did great Nature thank;
Death envious grew she such delight did take,
And with his Dart a deadly wound did make:
A sudden Cold did seize her every Limb,
With which her Pulse beat slow, and Eyes grew dim.
Some that sate by, observed her pale to be,
But thought it some false Light; yet went to see:
And when they came, she turned her Eyes aside,
Spread forth her arms, then stretched, and sighed, and died.
The frighted Virgins ran with panting-breath,
To tell the sadder story of her death:
The whilst the Flowers to her rescue bend,
And all their Med'cinable Virtues send:
But all in vain, their Power's too weak; each Head
Then drooped, seeing they could not help the Dead.
Their fresher Colours did no longer stay,
But faded straight, and withered all away.
For Tears, they dropped their Leaves, and thought it meet
To strew her with them, as a Winding-Sheet.
The Airy Choristers hovered above,
And sung her last sad Funeral-Song of Love.
The Earth grew proud, now having so much honour,
That Odoriferous Corpse lying upon her.
When that pure Virgin's Stuff dissolved in Dew,
Was the first cause new Births of Flowers grew,
And added Sweets to those it did renew.
The Grosser Parts the Curious soon did take,
Of it transparent Purslain they did make:
Her Purer Dust they keep for to refine
Best Poets Verse, and gild every Line;
And all Poetic Flames she did inspire:
So her Name lives in that Eternal Fire.
A Mock-Tale of his Grace the Duke of Newcastle.
CUPID Love-birding went, his Arrow laid,
Aiming to hit a young fresh Countrey-Maid:
Being pur-blind, his Arrow it did glance,
And hit an Old-old Woman there by chance.
She presently with Love sighs shorter breath,
Groaned so, as all the Neighbours thought her Death.
Little she had of feeling, nor no ground
To guess where Cupid used to make the wound.
A long forgetfulness there was, no doubt,
Of what was Love, and all those thoughts worn out.
At last, Love rubbed her Mem'ry up, and then
She thought some Threescore years ago, and ten,
Was wounded so; but then was in her Prime;
The Surgeon cured her, was Father Time;
But he's not skilful for Love's wounds; all those,
Though they seem cured, yet they'll never close,
But break out still again; not Winter's cold
Will freeze them up, nor Age, though ne'er so old.
She, with Laborious Hands, and Idle Breech,
Used to weed Gardens, and for her grown rich;
Some Twenty Pounds she'd got, which she did hide
For her great, great, great Grandchild, when a Bride.
O powerful Love! to see thy fatal Curse,
Now to forget her Noble Race and Purse;
Enquires out the best Taylors in the Town,
To make her Waistcoats, Petticoats, and Gown:
New Shoes of Shoo-maker she did bespeak,
And bids him put three-penny-worth of Creak
Into the Soles, that Dew when them it fills,
Like Hero's Buskins, chirrup through the Bills.
Hunts Peddlers out, and buys fresh Ribbans blew,
To show that she is turned a Lover true.
And now those Hands, not white as Venus Doves,
Not to preserve, but hide with Dog-skin Gloves.
Takes keener Nettles up, that by her stood,
To rub her Skin and Cheeks, but found no Blood.
No dangling Tresses there could any find;
Sister to Time, no Locks before, behind.
Yet smooth she was not, as the Billiard-ball;
But bald as it all over, you might call.
When met her Love, he thought she smiled to grace
Her self, when 'twas but wrinkles in her Face.
And all Love's arts she tried, and oft she met him,
This lusty young and labouring-man, to get him.
His Poverty with her Purse joined their hands,
And so did enter in the Marriage-bands.
But to describe their sumptuous Marriage Feast,
Their richer Clothes, and every honoured Guest;
Their melting Love-Songs, softer Musick's t'uch,
Are not to be expressed, not half so much
As you may now imagine; all my Skill,
And fainter Muse, too weak; nay, Virgil's Quill,
With that description, it would blunter grow;
And Homer's too, with all his Furies; so
They blushed for shame, when saw this lovely Bride
Put them all down; thus triumphs she in Pride.
Now after Supper, when they were both fed,
Your Thoughts must go along with them to bed:
There being laid, he mounted now Love's Throne;
She sighed with Love, then fetched a deeper groan:
And so expired there in height of Pleasure,
And left him to enjoy her long-got Treasure.
Nay, so beloved she was, that now lies low,
That all the Women wished for to dye so.
Then came a Lady young, that had not been
In that Society; and coming in,
They told her, she a Tale must pay,
Or, as a Bankrupt, she must go away.
Truly, said she, I am not rich in Wit,
Nor do I know what Tales your Humours fit.
Yet in my young and budding Muse,
Will draw the Seasons of the Year,
Like 'Prentice-Painters, which do use
The same to make their skill appear.
But Nature is the Hand to guide
The Pencil of the Brain, and place
The Shadows so, that they may hide
All the Defects, or gived a grace.
Fancy Draws Pictures in the Brain,
Not subject to the outward Sense;
They are Imaginations vain,
Yet are they the Life's Quintessence.
For when Life's gone, yet they will live,
And to the Life a Fame will give.
The Tale of the Four Seasons of the Year.
THE Spring is dressed in buds blossoms sweet,
And Grass-green Socks she draws upon her feet.
Of freshest air a Garment she cuts out,
With painted Tulips fringed round about,
And lines it all within with Violets blew,
And yellow Primrose of the palest hew:
Then wears an Apron made of Lillies white,
And laced about it is with Rays of Light.
Cuffs of Narcissus her fair hands do tie,
Pinned close with Stings of Bees which buzzing fly
To gather Honey-dew which thereto cleaves,
And leave their Stings when they do prick the leaves.
Ribbons of Pinks and Gilliflowers makes;
Roses both white and red, for Knots she takes.
When she's thus dressed, the Birds in Love do fall,
And chirping, then, do to each other call
To sing, and hop, and merry make,
And joyed they are all for the Spring's sake.
But of all Birds, the Nightingal delights
To sing the Spring to bed in warmer Nights;
Because the Spring at Night draws in her Head
Into the Earth, for that she makes her bed;
And in the Morning, when asleep she lies,
The Nightingal doth sing to make her rise;
And calls the Sun to open her fair Eyes,
Who gallops fast, that he might her surprise.
But when the Spring is past her Virgin's prime,
And married is to old bald-Father Time;
The Nightingal, for grief, doth cease to sing,
And silent is till comes another Spring.
The Summer's clothed in glorious Sun-shine bright,
And with a trailing-Veil of long-day-light:
Some Dust, as Powder, on her Hair doth place,
And with the Morning's Dew doth wash her Face.
A Zephyrus-Wind she for a Fan doth spread,
To cool her Cheeks, which are hot-burning-red;
And with that Heat so thirsty she doth grow,
As she drinks all the fresh sweet Springs that flow.
Then in a Thundring-Chariot she doth ride,
For to astonish Mortals with her Pride:
Before her Chariot flashing-Lightning flies,
A fluid Fire that spreads about the Skies.
As Princes great, that in dry ways do travel,
Have Water thrown to allay the Dust and Gravel.
This Fire allays, cleanses all Vapours gross,
Lest, rising, they should stop the Thunder's force:
And when she from her Chariot doth alight,
Then is she waited on by Sun-beams bright:
Or else the Rays that from the Moon do spread,
As Waxen Tapers, light her to her bed,
And with refreshing-sleeps a while doth rest;
There sweet air breathing from her panting breast.
Yet Summer's proud, ambitious, high, and hot,
And full of action, idle she is not:
Chol'rick she is, and oft doth Quarrels make;
But yet sometimes she doth her Pleasure take:
At high-noon with the Butter-flyes doth play,
In the Evening with the Bats doth dance the Hay:
Or at the setting of the Sun doth fly
With Swallows swift, to keep them Company.
But if she's crossed, she straight malicious grows,
And in a fury Plagues on Men she throws,
Or other Sickness, and makes Beasts to dye,
And cause the Marrow in the bones to fry.
But Creatures that with long time are grown old,
Or such as are of Constitution cold,
She nourishes, and Life she doth restore,
In Flies, Bats, Swallows, many Creatures more:
For some do say, these Birds in Winter dye,
And in Summer revive again to fly.
Of all the Four Seasons of the Year,
This Season doth most full and fat appear.
Her blood is hot, and flowing as full Tide,
She's only fit to be Apollo's Bride:
But she, as all young Ladies, in their prime,
Doth fade and wither with old Father Time;
And all their beauty, which they much admire,
Doth vanish soon, and quickly doth expire.
Just so the Summer dries, withers away;
No powerful Art can make sweet Beauty stay.
The Autumn, though she's in her fading years,
And sober, yet she pleasantly appears:
Her Garments are not decked with Flowers gay,
Nor are they green, like to the Month of May,
But of the colour are of dapple Deer,
Or Hares, that to a sandy ground appear:
Yet she is rich, with Plenty doth abound,
All the increase of Earth is with her found:
Most Creatures, Nourishment to them doth give,
And by her bounty, Men, Beasts, Birds, do live;
Besides, the grieved Heart with Joy doth fill,
When from the plump Grapes Wine she doth distill;
And gathers Fruits, which lasting are, and sound,
Her brows about with Sheaves of Corn are crowned,
In those are Seeds, whereof Man makes some Bread,
With which the Poor and Rich are nourished.
Yet 'tis not Bounty can hinder Nature's course,
For constantly she change in one source:
For though the Matter may be still the same,
Yet she doth change the Figure and the Frame:
And though in Principles she constant be,
And keeps to certain Rules, which well agree
To a wise Government; yet doth not stay,
But as one comes, another glides away:
So doth the Autumn leave our Hemisphere
To Winter cold, at which Trees shake for fear,
And in that Passion all their Leaves do shed,
And all their Sap back to the Root is fled:
Like to the Blood, which from the Face doth run,
To keep the Heart, lest Death should seize thereon.
Then comes the Winter, with a lowering brow,
No pleasant Recreations doth allow:
Her skin is wrinkled, and her blood is cold;
Her Flesh is numb, her Hands can nothing hold:
Her Face is swarthy, and her Eyes are red;
Her Lips are blew, with Palsy shakes her Head;
She often coughs, and's very rheumatic,
Her Nose doth drop, and often doth she spit;
Her Humour's Melancholy, as Cold and Dry,
Yet often she in show'ring Rain doth cry,
And blustering Storms, as in a Passion sent,
Which on the Earth, and on the Water vent;
As Rheums congeal to Phlegm, the Waters so,
By thickening Cold, congeal to Ice, Hail, Snow,
Which she spits forth; upon the Earth they lye
In lumps and heaps, which makes the Plants to dye:
She's poor and barren, little hath to give,
For in this Season all things hardly live:
But often those who're at the worst estate,
By change of Times do grow more fortunate:
So when the Winter's past, then comes the Spring,
And Plenty doth restore to every thing.
A Poet in the Company Said to his Lady:
YOur Fingers are Minerva's Loom, with which
Your Sense in Letters weave,
No knots or snarls you leave;
Work Fancy's Thread in Golden Numbers rich.
Your Breasts are Helicon, which Poets fits:
For though they do not drink,
If thereon they do think,
Their Brains are filled with high and sparkling Wits.
Your Tongue's Parnassus Hill, on high it stands;
Her Muses sit and sing,
Or dance in Fayrie's Ring,
Crowned with your Rosie Lips, and sweet Garlands.
Your Eyes Diana's Arrows; and no doubt
Your arched Brow her Bow,
Like Ebony black doth show,
From whence sweet gentle Modesty shoots out.
Your Hairs are fatal Threads, Lovers hang by;
Your Brain is Vulcan's Net,
Fine Fancies for to get,
Which, like to winged Birds, aspiring fly.
The next, a Man of Scholarship professed,
He in his turn this Tale told to the rest.
An Expression of the Doubts and Curiosity of Man's Mind.
THere was a Man which much desired to know,
When he was dead, whither his Soul should go;
Whether to Heaven high, or down to Hell,
Or the Elyzium Fields, where Lovers dwell;
Or whether in the air to fly about;
Or whether it, like to a Light, goes out.
At last the Thoughts, the Servants to the Mind,
Which dwell in Contemplation, to find
The truth; they said, No pains that they would spare
To travel every where, and thus prepare:
Each Thought did clothe it self with Language fit,
For to enquire, and to dispute for it:
And Reason they did take to be their Guide,
Then straight unto a College they did ride;
Where Scholars dwell, and learned Books are read,
The living Works of the most Wise, who're dead.
There they enquired, the truth for to know,
And every one was ready for to show;
Though every several Work, and several Head,
And several Tongue, a several path still lead;
Where the Thoughts were scattering several ways,
Some tedious long, others like short Essays.
But Reason, which they took to be their Guide,
With rest and silence quietly did 'bide,
Till their return, who ragged and all torn,
Came back as naked as when they were born:
For in their travels hard disputes had past,
Yet all were forced for to return at last.
But when Reason saw their poor condition,
Naked of Sense, their Words, and Expedition,
And Expectation too, and seeming sad,
(But some were frantic, and despairing, mad.)
She told them, They might wander all about,
But she did fear the Truth would ne'er find out.
Which when they heard, with rage they angry grew,
And straight from Reason they themselves withdrew.
Then all agreed they to the Court would go,
In hopes the Courtiers then the truth might know:
The Courtiers laughed, and said they could not tell;
They thought the Soul in Sensual Pleasures dwell,
And that it had no other Heaven or Hell;
The Soul they slight, but wish the Body well.
This answer made the Thoughts not long to stay
Among the Courtiers, but soon went their way.
Then to the Army straight they did repair,
Hoping the Truth of Souls they should find there;
And of the Chief Commander they enquire,
Who willing was to answer their desire.
They said for certain, that all Souls did dye,
But those that lived in Fame or Infamy.
Those that Infamous were, without all doubt
Were damned, and from reproach should ne'er get out:
But such whose Fame their Noble Deeds did raise,
Their Souls were blessed with an Eternal Praise;
And those that died, and never mentioned were,
They thought their Souls breathed out to nought but Air.
With that the Thoughts were very much perplexed,
Then did resolve the Chemists should be next
Which they would ask: so unto them they go
To be resolved, If they of Souls did know.
They said unto the Thoughts, When Bodies dye,
Souls are the Elixir, and pure Chemistry:
For Gold, said they, can never wasted be,
Nor can it alter from its purity.
Eternal 'tis, and shall for ever last,
And as pure Gold, so Souls do never wast.
Souls are the Essence, and pure Spirits of Gold,
Which never change, but shall for ever hold:
And as Fire doth the pure from dross divide,
So Souls in Death are cleansed and purifi'd
From grosser parts of Body; and no doubt
The Soul, as Spirits, Death exhaleth out:
It is the Essence of great Nature's store;
All Matter hath this Essence, less or more.
After the Thoughts had mused long, In fine,
Said they, we think the Soul is more Divine,
Than from a Mettled Earth for to proceed;
Well known it is, all Metals Earth doth breed:
And though of purest Earth the true Gold be,
Being refined by Heat to that degree
Of pureness, by which it long doth last,
Yet may long time and labour make it wast,
To show 'tis not Eternal; and perchance
Some slight Experience may that work advance,
Which Man hath not yet found; but Time, said they,
May Chemists teach; and so they went away.
But travelling about, they weary grew;
To rest a while, they for a time withdrew
The search of Truth, into a Cottage went,
Where lived an aged Cottage, well content,
A Man and Wife, which pious were, and old;
To them the Thoughts their tedious Journeys told,
And what they went to seek, the Truth to find
Concerning Souls, to tell unto the Mind:
For we desire, said they, the truth to know,
From whence the Soul proceeds, or where 'twill go,
When parted from the Body. The Old Man said,
Of such Employment he should be afraid,
Lest Nature or the Gods should angry be
For his Presumption and Curiosity.
If it be Nature's work, there is no doubt
But it doth transmigrate all things about:
And who can follow Nature's steps and pace,
And all the subtle ways that she doth trace?
Her various Forms, which curious Motion makes;
Or what Ingredients for those Forms she takes?
Who knows, said he, the Cause of any thing,
Or what the Matter is whence all doth spring?
Or who at first did Matter make to move
So wisely, and in order, none can prove;
Nor the Decrease, nor Destinies can find,
Which are the Laws that every thing do bind.
But who can tell that Nature is not Wife
To mighty Jove? and he begets the life
Of every Creature which she breeds, and brings
Forth several Forms; each Figure from her springs.
Thus Souls and Bodies joined in one Gin,
Though Bodies mortal be, the Soul's divine,
As being first begot by Jove, and so
The purest part of Life's the Soul, we know;
For the animated part from Jove proceeds,
The grosser part from Nature self she breeds.
And what's more Animated than Mankind,
Unless his Soul, which is of higher Kind?
Thus every Creature to Jove and Nature are,
As Sons and Daughters, and their Off-spring fair.
And as their Parents of them do take care;
So they, as Children, ought not for to fear
How they dispose of them, but to submit
Obediently to all that they think fit;
Not to dispute on idle Questions still,
But show obedience to their Maker's will.
Man asks blessing of his Father Jove,
And Jove doth seem Mankind the best to love.
And Nature she her blessing doth bestow;
When she gives Health, makes Plenty for to flow.
The blessings which Jove gives unto Mankind,
Are peaceful Thoughts, and a still quiet Mind:
And Jove is pleased, when that we serve his Wife
(Our Mother Nature) with a Virtuous Life:
For Moral Virtues are the Ground whereon
All Jove's Commands and Laws are built upon.
Thoughts trouble not your selves, said he, which way
The Soul shall go to Jove, and Nature pay:
For Temperance, wherein the Life is blessed,
That Temperance doth please the Life the best.
Intemperance doth torture Life with pain;
And what's superfluous, to us is vain.
Therefore return, and temper well the Mind,
For you the truth of Souls shall never find.
At last came Reason, which had been their Guide,
And brought them Faith; in her they did confide.
Taking their leave, away with Faith they ride,
And Faith e're since doth with the Mind reside.
A Lady which all Vanities had left,
Since she of Youth and Beauty was bereft:
She said, That Pride in Youth was a great sin;
Of which a Tale did tell, thus entering in:
A Description of the Fall of foolish and self-conceited Pride.
THere was a Lady rich, that sate in state,
And round about her did her Servants wait:
Where every Tongue did walk still in their turn,
But in the ways of Flattery they run.
You are, said one, the finest dressed to day;
A Heavenly Creature, did another say:
Your Skin is purer far, than Lillies white,
And yet is clear and glassy as the Light:
And from your Eyes such splendrous rays do spread,
That they seem like a Glory round your Head:
Your Wit is such, 'tis supernatural;
And all that hear you speak, straight Lovers fall:
The sound but of your Voice, charms every Ear,
And when you speak, your breath perfumes the air.
Thus by these flatteries most proud she grew,
And scornful looks on every Object threw:
All Men she scorned that did to her address;
And laughed at all did love to her profess.
Her Senses for to please, she was so nice,
That nothing served but what was of great price.
Thus did she live in Lux'ry, Pride, and Ease,
And all her Thoughts were still her self to please.
She never prayed unto the Gods on high,
For she did think her self a Deity;
That all Mankind was made her to admire,
And ought her Favours most for to desire:
That every knee that bowed not to her low,
Or whose demeanours did not reverence show.
She thought them Beasts that did not Merit know,
Or that her Frowns should work their overthrow.
Her Smiles and Frowns she thought such power had,
As Destiny, to work both good and bad.
At last the Gods, that always have an eye
Upon the Earth, who all things do descry
Amongst poor Mortals, they this Lady spied,
Whose heart was swelled, and thoughts were big with pride,
Begot by Pluto's Wealth, and Nature's Paint,
Bred in the Soul, which makes it sick and faint.
But Pride is nursed still by the Senses five,
What from each Sense it sucks, it keeps alive.
But if no Nourishment it gets from those,
As Touch, Taste, Sound, sweet pleasant scent orshows.
It faints and pines a way as starved, so dyes,
And in a Grave of Melancholy lies.
But, as I said, when Gods poor Mortals viewed,
They for their sins, with Punishment pursued.
Then with this Lady they did first begin,
Many ill accidents at her they fling:
First, they did set her House and Goods on fire,
Where her rich Furniture did soon expire:
Then Envy sought all ways to pull her down,
And taxed her Land as due unto the Crown;
And in that Suit great Sums of Money vast
Lawyers engrossed, which made those Sums to wast.
And when those Lawyers got all that she had,
They cast her Suit, as if her Cause was bad:
By which her Lands she lost; then only left
Her rich with Beauty, but of Lands bereft:
In which she pleasure took, although but poor
Of Fortune's Goods, of Nature's Giftssh' had store.
But when the Gods did see her still content,
At last they to her Body Sickness sent.
She patient was, her Beauty still did last:
But when that they their Judgment on that cast,
Making a Grave to bury Beauty in,
Which Beauty once did tempt the Saints to sin:
Because her Face so full of Pock-holes were,
That none could judge that Beauty once dwelt there.
Then did she sit and weep, turned day to Night,
Ashamed she was to show her Face the light.
Time, an Ingraver, cuts the Seal of Truth;
And, as a Painter, draws both age and youth:
His Colours, mixed with Oil of Health, lays on;
The plump smooth Youth he pencils thereupon:
Shadows of Age he places with much skill,
Making the hollow places darkest still.
But Time is slow, and leisure he doth take,
No price will hasten him his Works to make;
But accidental Chance, who oft doth jar
With aged Time, and then some Works doth mar.
But when her wealth was gon, and state was down,
Then did her Friends and Servants on her frown;
So far now from professing Slavery,
As they did use her most uncivilly;
Would rail against her, spiteful words throw out;
Or had she been but guilty, would (no doubt)
Betray her life: such natures have Mankind,
That those in Misery no Friends can find:
For Fortune's Favours only Friendships make.
But few are Friends only for Virtue's sake;
In Fortune's Frowns Man will not only be
A Neuter, but a deadly Enemy:
Nay, even a Devil to torment the Mind,
If he no mischief' against the body find.
But after she had mourned Three hundred days,
Consid'ring Nature's, Fortune's various ways;
She did repent, weeping for what was past,
Imploring Gods to pity her at last.
Good Gods! forgive my Vanity and Pride,
Let not my Soul with sinful spots be died;
Let your great Mercies scour those spots off clean,
That by your Justice no spots may be seen.
Consider, Lord, the Works that Nature makes,
The Matter, Motion, and the Form she takes;
The Grounds and Principles on which she builds;
The Life and Death in all things she distills,
Is various still; in what she doth compose,
Nothing but wild Inconstancy she shows.
Nor is it only the substantial part
That is composed thus by her Curious Art:
But what we call Immortal, as the Soul,
Doth various passions appetites control.
And as all bodies that are young, want strength,
And wait for Time to give them breadth and length;
So doth the Soul want Understanding too,
And knows not what is best to think or do:
Wherefore, great Jove, I never shall despair
Of thy sweet Mercy, nor yet Devils fear.
To punish Ignorance, Youth rash ways runs,
Which Age by long-experienc'd knowledge shuns:
But Age oft time's as faulty, as Youths be
Corrupted with bad Principles: we see
That length of Time and Custom makes them show
As if in Man they naturally grew.
But to conclude, the time she had to live,
She heartily unto the Gods did give:
Though young, into a Nunnery she went,
Her Vows unto the Gods she did present:
Her Days not being long, she soon there died,
And now her Soul with Angels doth reside:
For with her Penance, Tears, and Contrite Spirit,
She washed away her sins, and Heaven did merit.
The next Tale when you read, it will discover
The fortunate or the unfortunate Lover.
A Mock-Tale of the Lord Duke of Newcastle, which his Grace was pleased to say,
out of his great Civility, That it would serve for Shadows to set off the rest;
He loving Truth so well, that he was never good at telling Tales.
A Young and Lusty Cheshire-Lad did move
In Venus Sphere, and was so filled with Love
When first he saw a lovely Lass at Chester,
Whose badge of Christianity was Hester.
So beautiful and fair she did appear,
Fresh as the welcome Spring to the New Year;
And Odoriferous as Flower's birth;
As fair as new-born Lillies from the Earth.
This set the young Man's heart in Love's Flame Fire,
Struck dumb in Love, turned all now to admire.
At last Love found a Tongue, which did not fail
To burst out violently, and thus to rail;
Cursing now partial Nature, that did give
More beauty to her than elsewhere doth live.
Bankrupt in Beauty, since her store is gone,
Mankind condemned to foul ones now, or none.
Was Nature lavish? or else made the Thest
Upon her self, since she hath nothing left
Of what is handsome? so I now do find,
He enjoys thee, enjoys all Womankind:
For Beauty, Favour, and what's height of Pleasure,
Since thou art Nature's Store-house, her Treasure.
O love me then, since all my hopes are crossed;
If I enjoy you not, I'm wholly lost.
For what I can call Happiness; nay worse,
My Life then to me's but a fatal Curse:
But if you yield, I'll bless Dame Nature's Gift,
And Bounty to you, since 'twas all her drist
To make her Master-piece in you, and vex
The envious Females, angring all your Sex:
And if her bounty to you, you give me,
I shall be Deified in love by thee.
Here on my knees I beg thy Love thus low;
Until I have it, my Knees here shall grow:
Therefore be kind. She answered with sweet Eyes,
Which spoke, not speaking, for to bid him rise:
And then discoursed with modest blushes, so
As that did tell him all her heart did know.
Trembling and shaking with Love's Palsi'd Tongue,
With broken Sighs, and half Words it was strung;
Love's Comma's, Full-Points, and Parenthesis,
And this Love's Rhetoric, Oratory is.
With Love's pale-difficulty then afraid,
She softly said, O I'm a tender Maid,
And never heard such language! you'll deceive me;
And now I wish, I could wish you would leave me.
Why do ye enchant a silly Maid? alas,
I never saw such beauty in my Glass,
And yet I've heard of flattering Glasses too;
But nothing flatters like you Men that woo:
Your Tongue's Love's Conjuration, without doubt;
Circles me here in Love, cannot get out,
By your Love's Magic whispering. Then did yield,
And said, You've conquered, and have won the field.
Such Joy between them, such new Passions raised,
Which made the God of Love himself amazed;
Since by no Tongue or Pen can be expressed;
Cupid and Hymen ne'er hoped such a Feast.
But see the Fate of business, which doth move
So cross, For Business hath no sense of Love.
O thou dull Business! Yet some States-men pry
Into Love's Secrets with a glancing Eye.
But here our Lover was arraigned to stand
Condemned to Business, that in Ireland
Necessity doth urge him: That word Part,
So cruel was, it struck each other's heart,
Which inwardly did bleed with sorrow's grief,
Since nothing now but hopes were their relief.
Sadly he goes aboard, Love fills his Sails,
And Cupid with his wings fanns gentle Gales
To waft him over; he thus thought to please
His wounded Lover over those Rocky Seas;
Love would not leave him: nor was he content,
Unless this dangerous passage with him went.
In the mean time, his Mistress did commit
Her self to sorrow, and with her to sit
As her close Prisoner, this was all her end,
And grieved more than Widows do pretend.
Safely is landed now our Lover over,
And Cupid with him, on the Irish shore.
Love is so various, which some Lovers see;
Now Love an Irish Cupid's turned to be:
And takes all memory thus from our Lover,
Of his first Mistress, and doth now discover
Love's new Plantation in the Irish Pale,
In Love's rich Island there, which doth not fail
To take our Lover, and inflame him more
Under an Irish Mantle, than what's store
Of Gowns of Cloth of Gold. Curls, painted Art,
Cheats Love, when simple Nature wounds Love's Heart.
This change of Love is blown so up and down,
By Fame's loud Trumpet, through all Chester Town:
The Women gossip'd it, and could not hold
Till to his former Mistress they it told.
This was the first time that she smiled to see
Impossible Reports of him to be:
They might as well say, Phoebus gives no light,
Or Stars to fall, or make a Day of Night,
As he inconstant was: yet Love doth doubt,
Not doubting, yet enquires all about,
And sets her Love-spies to enquire anew:
But those reports each minute stronger grew:
So she resolved her self to know the truth,
And was disguised in Clothes now like a Youth,
And went in Cavalier: The gentle Wind
Did favour her, and landed to her mind.
The Port was Dublin, and could not forbear
To make enquiries for her Love, and there
She found him at an Inn. He then began
To take such liking to his Countrey-man,
All his Discourse enquiring for his Ends,
To know the welfare of his English Friends:
Which she so fully satisfied, as he
Was now enamoured of her company;
And was so fond, in her took such delight,
As supped, and lay together too that night.
Never suspecting her, his Mistress, then
Blindly went on, and took her for a Man;
So full of Love and Friendship, could not hold,
But to her all his Irish Love he told,
Desiring her to go along and see
This Miracle of Beauty, which was she;
And so she did. Her Love turned now disdain,
To see his Falsehood, and no love remain:
So base, unworthy, and unconstant too,
As now began to think what she should do.
She quenched her Passion, which is wise and better
Than Love's Complaints: so writ to him a Letter
Of her whole Voyage, and Love's constant Hist'ry,
All her Designs, disguises in Love's Mystery;
And left this Letter in the Window: so
Three or four days it was before he did know,
Or found it out. In the mean time she's gone,
And shipped for England, leaving him alone.
When found her Letter was, such Passions grew
Stronger upon him than e're Lover knew;
Resolved the foaming Billows to embrace,
Those liquid steps of hers he meant to trace,
And lay himself in pickled tears of Love,
Now at her feet, to see what that would move:
But all in vain, he thought too long had tarri'd,
When landed, found the same day she was marri'd:
Fell in such ecstasies, cursing his Fate,
The Ship and Winds, that made him come so late.
With Love's new hopes, his Sails he filled, and then
Invoked God Neptune to go back again:
And all the passage as he went along,
Challenged the Mermaids in a loving Song;
With Love's assurances so over-joy'd,
As now his loving heart was not annoyed,
But filled with Pleasure, and with all Delight,
Thinking t'embrace his Irish Love that night.
No sooner landed so -- he thought to woo
His Mistress, but he found her marri'd too.
Cursing the Stars of his Nativity,
Thus short of Wedlock at both ends to be;
Made him grow desperate; and, as they say,
Then in despair he made himself away
Upon a Wench, and some swear without doubt,
That there he knocked the Brains of's Cupid out;
So murdered Love, and there he did enroul
Each one a Fool, with a Platonic Soul:
And so despised and scorned the old God Hymen,
That with so easy words so long did tie men,
To make them Galley-slaves in Marriage, so
Ti'd in his Chains, condemned for life to row
In Wedlock's Galley -- Give me freedom then,
Thy Godhead I invoke, whilst foolish Men
To Love and Hymen's Prisons there do sit,
Justly committed for their want of Wit:
For he's a Fool that's ti'd when might be free:
And thus he raved and talked Non-sense you see,
As he that writ this Story, you may mend it;
So for his sake, and yours, and mine, I'll end it.
A Lady said, His Tale of Love did tell;
She with a Tale of Death would fit it well:
For Death, said she, unties the Lover's knot,
When deadly Arrows from his Bow are shot.
A Lady on her Death-bed panting lay,
She called her Friends, and thus to them did say:
Farewell my dearest Friends, for I must go
Unto a place which you nor I yet know:
May be my Spirit will wander in the shade
Of glimmering light, which is by Moon-shine made:
Or in my Tomb in peace may lye asleep,
So long as Ashes in my Urn do keep.
Or else my Soul, like Birds, may have its wings,
Or like to Herc'les Flies that want their stings.
But howsoever, Friends, grieve not, nor cry,
For fear my Soul should be disturbed thereby:
Clothe not your selves with Melancholy black;
Call not your Grief unto remembrance back:
But let your Joys a Resurrection have,
Called forth by comfort from the sorrowful Grave.
Let not Delight entombed lye
In the sad Heart, or weeping Eye:
Let not pale Grief my Soul affright,
Shrouded in Melanch'ly's dark Night:
But Death, said she, I fear him not;
So turned her head, and Death her shot.
Then on a Cypress Hearse was laid forth dead;
As scorning Death, aside was turned her head:
By cruel Death her arms were careless flung;
Her hands over the sides as strengthless hung:
Her eyes were closed, as if she lay asleep;
Though she was pale, her face did sweetness keep.
Her Elegy was thus:
Tears rain a-pace, and so a River make,
To drown all Grief within a watery Lake.
Make Seas of Tears, for Wind of Sighs to blow
Salt Billows up, the Eyes to overflow:
Let Ships of Patience traffic on the Main,
To bring in Comfort to sad Hearts again.
The next turn, a Man;
And he thus began:
THE Silk-worm and the Spider Houses make,
All their Materials from their Bowels take;
They cut no Timber down, nor carve they Stone;
Nor buy they Ground to build their Houses on:
Yet they are Curious, built with Art and Care,
Like Lovers, who build Castles in the Air,
Which every puff of Wind is apt to break,
As Imaginations, when Reason's weak.
They said, His Tale was short,
He Answer made, I'll piece it out.
And thus he said:
THE Silk-worm digs her Grave as she doth spin,
And makes her Winding-sheet to lap her in:
And from her Bowels takes a heap of Silk,
Which on her Body as a Tomb is built:
Out of her ashes do her young ones rise;
Having bequeathed her Life to them, she dyes.
They only take that Life to spin a Death;
For as they wind up Silk, they wind out Breath.
Thus, rather than do nought, or idle be,
They'll work, and spin out Life's small Thread we see.
When all their work is done, ready to dye,
Their Wings are grown, for Life away to fly.
The Silk-worm is first a small Seed; then turns into a Worm; at last grows
to have Wings like a Fly, but lives not to make use of them. As soon as she is
big enough, she spins a Ball of Silk all about her self; wherein, being grown
to be a Fly, she makes a hole to come out, to leave Seed for the generation of
her young ones: After which she immediately dyes.
The Women said, the Men made quick dispatch
In telling Tales, like Dogs that Bones do snatch.
But howsoe're, a Woman did begin
To tell a Tale, and thus she entered in.
A Description of the Passion of Love misplaced.
A Lady on the Ground a mourning lay,
Complaining to the Gods, and thus did say:
You Gods, said she, why do you me torment?
Why give you Life, without the Mind's content?
Why do you Passions in a Mind create,
Then leave it all to Destiny and Fate?
With knot and snarls they spin the Thread of Life,
Then weave it cross, and make a Web of strife.
Come Death, though Fates are cross, yet you're a Friend,
And in the Grave dost peace quiet send.
It chanced a Gentleman that way came by,
And seeing there a weeping Beauty lye;
Alas, dear Lady, why do you so weep,
Unless your Tears you mean the Gods shall keep?
Jove will present those Tears to Juno fair,
For Pendants, and for Neck-laces to wear:
And so present that Breath to Juno fair,
That she may always move in perfumed air.
Forbear, forbear, make not the World so poor;
Send not such Riches, for the Gods have store.
I'm one, said she, to whom Fortune's a Foe,
Crossing my Love, working my overthrow:
A Man which to Narcissus might compare:
For Youth and Beauty, and the Graces fair,
Do him adorn; on him my love is placed:
But his neglect doth make my life to wast.
My Soul doth mourn, my Thoughts no rest can take;
He, by his scorn, doth me unhappy make.
With that she cried, O Death, said she, come quick,
And in my heart thy Leaden Arrow stick.
Take comfort, Lady, grieve and weep no more,
For Nature handsome Men hath more in store:
Besides, dear Lady, Beauty will decay,
And with that Beauty love will flee away.
If you take time, this heat of Love will wast,
Because 'tis only on a Beauty placed.
But if your Love did from his Virtue spring,
You might have loved, though not so fond have been.
The love of Virtue is, for to admire
The Soul, and not the Body to desire:
That's a gross Love, which only dull Beasts use;
But Noble Man to love the Soul will choose:
Because the Soul is like a Deity,
Therein pure Love will live eternally.
O Sir, but Nature hath the Soul so fixed
Unto the Body, and such Passions mixed,
That nothing can divide or dis-unite,
Unless that Death will separate them quite:
For when the Senses in Delights agree,
They bind the Soul, make it a Slave to be.
He Answered,
If that the Soul in Man should give consent
In every thing the Senses to content,
No Peace, but War amongst Mankind would be,
And Desolation would have Victory:
No Man could tell or challenge what's his own;
He would be Master that is strongest grown.
Lady, love Virtue, and let Beauty dye,
And in the Grave of Ruins let it lye.
With that she rose, and with great joy, said she,
Farewell, fond Love, and foolish Vanity.
The Men condemned the Tale, because (said they)
None but a Fool would preach so, Wise men pray.
But Ladies hear me, did another say.
TO love but one, is a great fault,
For Nature otherwise is taught:
She caused Varieties for us to taste,
And other Appetites in us she placed;
And caused dislike in us to rise,
To surfeit when we gormandise;
For of one Dish we glut our Palate,
Although it be but of a Salat.
When Solomon the Wise did try
Of all things underneath the Sky;
Although he found it Vanity,
Yet by it Nature made us free:
For by the change her Works do live
By several Forms that she doth give:
So that Inconstancy is Nature's play;
And we, her various Works, must her obey.
A Woman said, that Men were foolish Lovers,
And whining Passions Love oft discovers:
They're full of Thoughts, said she, yet never pleased,
Always complaining, and yet never eased:
They'll sigh, they mourn, they groan, they make great moan,
They'll sit cross-legged, with folded arms alone.
Sometimes their Dress is careless, with despair,
With hopes raised up, 'tis costly, rich, and rare,
Setting their Looks and Faces in a frame;
Their Garb's affected by their Mistress Name,
Flattering their Loves, forswearing; then each boasts
What Valiant Deedsh' has done in Foreign Coasts;
Through what great dangers his adventures run;
Such acts as Hercules had never done:
That every one that hears, doth fear his Name;
And every Tongue that speaks, sounds forth his fame.
And thus their Tongues extravagantly move,
Caused by vain-glorious, foolish, amorous Love,
Which only those of his own Sex approve.
But when their Raillery was past,
The Tale upon a Man was cast:
Then crying peace to all that talking were,
They were bid hold their Tongues, and lend an Ear.
The Man, more than the rest, was somewhat old;
They said to him, Your Tale you have not told:
Alas, said he, my Memory is bad,
And I have none so good as you have had.
He, musing a short time, thus did begin;
I hope, said he, my Tale may credit win.
A Description of Civil-Warrs.
A Kingdom which long time had lived in Peace,
Her People rich with Plenty, fat with Ease;
With Pride were haughty grown; Pride Envy bred;
From Envy Factions grew: then Mischief spread;
And Libels every where were strewed about,
Which after into Civil-Warr broke out.
Some for the Commons fought, some for the King,
And great Disorder was in every thing:
Battles were won and lost on either side;
Where Fortune ebbed and flowed, like to a Tide.
At last the Commons won; and then astride
Fierce Tyranny on Noble Necks did ride:
All Monuments pulled down, that stood long time;
And Ornaments were then thought a great Crime.
No Law was pleaded but the Martial Law;
The Sword did rule, and keep them all in awe.
No Prayers offered to the Gods on high;
All Ceremony in the Dust did lye:
Nothing was done in Order, Truth, and Right:
Nought governed then, but Malice, Spleen, Spite.
But mark how justly Gods do punish Men,
To make them humble, and to bow to them.
Though they had Plenty, and thereof did eat,
They relished not that good and savoury Meat;
Because their Conscience did them so torment,
For all their Plenty they were discontent:
They took no rest, Cares so oppressed their Mind,
No Joy nor Comfort in the World could find.
When drowsy sleep upon their Eyes did set,
Then fearful Visions in their Dreams they met:
In Life no pleasure take, yet fear to dye;
No Mercy can they hope from Gods on high.
O serve the Gods, and then the Mind will be
Always in peace and sweet tranquillity.
A Woman said, A Tale I mean to tell,
That in those Wars unto a Cross befell.
AN ancient Cross lived in our Father's time,
With as much Fame as did the Worthies nine:
No harm it did, or injury to none,
But dwelt in peace, and quietly alone:
On Times or Government did not complain,
But stood Stone-still, not stirred in no King's Reign.
Both Winter's Snow, and Summer's scorching Sun,
It did endure, and Urin'd was upon.
Yet peaceful Nature, nor yet humble Mind,
Shall not avoid rude Ignorance that's blind:
That superstitiously beats down all things
Which smell but of Antiquity, or springs
From Noble Deeds; nor love, nor take delight
In Laws or Justice, hating Truth and Right:
But Innovations love, for that seems fine;
And what is new, adore they as Divine:
That makes them so neglect the Gods above,
For Time doth waste both their respect and love.
And so this Cross, poor Cross, all in a rage
They pulled down quite, the fault was only Age.
Had it been gilded gloriously and brave,
They Vanity for an excuse might have:
But it was poor, its Mortar all off worn,
Which Time had eaten, as when Dogs have torn
The Flesh from Bones of Hares, or harmless Sheep;
Or like to Skeletons, that Scholars keep.
If they had pious been, it might have stood,
To mollify the Minds of Men to good.
But they were wicked, hating every thing
That by example might to goodness bring.
Then down they pulled it, leaving not one stone
Upon another, for it to be known
To after-ages; for the Ground lies bare,
And none can know that once the Cross stood there.
Then said a Man, I can this Tale well fit,
For I a Tale can tell that's like to it.
IN old times, when Devotion false did reign,
A Church was built, although to use profane,
Was Consecrated as Diana's right,
Who was their Goddess of the Moon-shine bright.
But afterwards, when Truth with Zeal did flame,
It Christened was, and bore Jove's mighty Name,
And dedicated to the Sun above,
Then married was, became his Spouse and Love.
Long did she live in Duty, Peace, and Zeal,
Became an Honour to the Commonweal;
Was curiously adorned within, without,
The Quoire all hung with Hangings rich about;
With Marble Tombs and Statues carved and cut,
Wherein the Bodies of good Saints were put.
There polished Pillars long the Isles did stand,
And Arched Roofs built by a skilful hand;
With Painted Windows placed on either side:
At every end were Gates, large, open, wide:
And all the inside was most bravely gilt,
As all the outside with Free-stone were built:
There Choristers did sing each several Note,
And Organs loud did answer every throat:
And Priests there taught Men how to pray and live,
Rewards and Punishments which Jove did give.
But mark, this Temple was destroyed by sin,
Since they did leave to worship Jove therein,
Because this Church profaned by sinful Men,
Was made a Stable, and for Thieves a Den.
No surer mark of Wrath when Gods do frown,
Then to give leave to pull their Temples down.
A Lady said, these VVarrs her Soul did shake,
And the remembrance made her heart to ache.
My Brother then was murdered in cold-blood,
Encircled round with Enemies he stood;
Where he, like to a fixed Star shined bright;
They like to black and pitchy Clouds of Night:
He like the Sun, his Courage like that Heat;
Their Envy, like bad Vapours, strove to beat.
His Light of Honour out; but powerful Fame
Did throw their spite back on their heads with shame.
And though they struck his Body, not his Mind,
(For that in Death through all their Malice shined.)
He valiant was, his Spirits knew no fear,
They never chilled when they in Battle were;
And strove to give more blows than safety sought:
His Limbs most vigour had, when most he fought.
He spoke not loud, nor sung, his fear to hide;
With silence marched, and quietly did ride,
Viewing the Armies with a watchful Eye;
And careful was, advantages to spy.
If that his Soldiers chanced to run away,
He ran not after them to make them stay,
As some Commanders, which will call and run
After the Soldiers, when the Flight's begun:
But when once gone, seldom return again,
But with their Soldiers they will safe remain.
But he amongst his Foes, like Earth, was fixed;
Or, like to Fire, himself was intermixed;
And their great solid Bodies did divide,
Pulling their Fabric down on either side;
Until his Mercy did for Favour pray
Unto his Courage, so to run away.
He made them know he was a Soldier good,
Trained up in Wars, which Art he understood:
Besides, his Genius was prompt thereunto;
Wit, Skill, Invention, knew what best to do:
Which made the Foe more fierce his Life to take,
For fear that he their ruin soon would make.
For they, so soon as he was in their power,
Like greedy Vultures, did his Life devour.
He stood their Rage, his Courage knew no fear;
Nor on grim Death with terror did he stare;
But did embrace her with a Generous Mind,
With Noble Thoughts, and Kisses that were kind.
Volleys of Shot did all his Body tear;
Where his blood's spilt, the Earth no Grass will abear.
As if, for to revenge his Death, the Earth
Was cursed with barrenness even from her birth.
And though his Body in the Grave doth lye,
His Fame doth live, and will eternally.
His Soul's Immortal, and so is his Fame;
His Soul in Heaven doth live, and here his Name.
The next time had a Man his turn to speak;
Who said, That Civil-Warrs made Rich men break.
Populous Kingdoms, that do flourish well
In Peace and Plenty, then to ruin fell.
WHen I, with grief, unto remembrance bring
The blessed time men lived with a goodKing;
To think at first how happy such do reign,
And in what Peace such Kingdoms do remain;
Where Magistrates do sit in Justice Throne,
Few Crimes committed, Punishments scarce known;
The Nobles lived in state and high degree,
All happy, even to the Peasantry:
Where easy Laws, no Tax to make them poor,
All live Plenty, full is every Store:
They Customs have to recreate the Mind,
Not barbarous, but civil, gentle, kind:
And those where Chance and Fortune bad do fall,
Have Means straight given to be kept withal:
Their Lands are fertile, and their Barns are full,
Orchards thick planted, from whence Fruit to pull:
Of Cattle store feeding in Meadows green,
Where Crystal Brooks run every Field between;
With Cowslips growing, which makes Butter yellow;
And fatted Beasts, two inches thick with Tallow:
And many Parks for fallow Deer to run,
Shadowed with Woods, to keep them from the Sun:
And in such Kingdoms, Beasts, Fowls, Fish, are store;
Those that industrious are, can ne'er be poor.
But O sad Fate and Fortune, if it chance
The Sword of Civil-Warr for to advance;
As when Rebellions, like a watery Flood,
O'reflows a Monarchy; in Royal Blood
Builds Aristocracy with cruel hands,
On unjust grounds of Tyranny it stands.
Then into wicked States such Kingdoms go,
Where Virtue's beaten out, no truth they know:
And all Religion flies away for fear,
And Atheism is preached every where.
Their Magistrates by Bribes do govern all,
No Suit is heard but what Injustice call:
For Covetousness and Malice pleads at barr
Against poor Honesty, with whom they jar:
Calamity doth find no Pity; for
All Pity's buri'd in a Civil-Warr.
A Lady's turn was next,
Which told this Tale perplexed:
SHE said, I over Sea to Lapland went,
My Husband being then in banishment:
His Estate gone, and being very poor,
I thought some means Compassion might restore:
But when I asked, no pity could I find;
Hard were their Hearts, and cruel every Mind.
Fie, saith a Man, you do all Orders break,
So long on Melancholy Themes you speak.
The Prologue to the Beggars Marriage.
I'Ve served two 'Prentiships, and now am made
Free of the Beggars Company to trade:
My Stock, in secret to your Ear I speak,
Is such, as I am sure I shall not break.
Let Boreas burst his Cheeks, and the Sea roar,
The Beggars Bark can ne'er be tumbled over.
What fitter Subject for my Muse can be,
Than make Descriptions of our Company?
The Beggar's Theme too well my Fortunes fit,
My begg'rly Fancy too, and so my Wit.
The Duke of Newcastle's Description of the Beggars Marriage.
WHile'om, there was a Ragged Beggar old,
Who in his time full fourscore Winters told;
His Head all frozen, Beard long, white as Snow,
With a staff's prop, for else he could not go:
With bleared Eyes, all parched, dry, and cold;
With shaking-Palsie, little could he hold:
His Clothes so tattered, for they were so worn,
Older than he, in many pieces torn:
The subtill'st Brain, and prying'st Eye, those seen,
Both could not guess what stuff they'd ever been.
On's Cloak more several Patches there did stick,
Than laboured Algebra's Arithmetic
Could once tell how to number; and was fuller,
Than was the Rainbow, of each various Colour,
But not so fresh; so faded when th'were seen,
That none could guess which red, which blew, which green.
His Turf-house leaned to an old stump of Oak;
A hole at top there for to void the Smoke
Of stolen scattered Boughs; could not be fed
But by his daily begging daily bread.
There on his little Bench I'll leave him, then
Within a while I'll speak of him again.
A withered Beggar-woman, little sundried
From him, who all the Town said, was a hundred:
Toothless she was, nay more, worn all her Gums,
And all her Fingers too were worn to Thumbs:
Wrinkles, deep Graves to bury all delight;
Eyes now sunk holes, little she had of sight,
Little could speak, as little sense could tell;
Seldom she heard, sometimes the great Towns-bell:
A long forgetfulness her Legs had seized;
For many years her Crutches them had eased:
Clothes, thousand rags torn with the wind weather,
Her Housewifery long since had sewed together.
No Livelihood, but Charity grown cold
As she was, this more than her years made old.
In a hot Summer's day, they out did creep,
Enlivened just like Flies, for else they sleep;
Creeping, at last each one to other get,
Lousing each other, kindly thus they met:
Apollo's Master-piece shining, did aim
To light dead ashes sparks, not make a flame
To stir up Nature in them, now so cold,
And whether Cupid dwelt in them who're old:
Now Heat and Kindness made him try to kiss her;
Her Palsi'd Head so shook, he still did miss her:
He thought it Modesty; she' against her will,
Striving to please him, could not hold it still:
She mumbl'd, but he could not understand her:
He cried, Sweet Hero, I'll be thy Leander:
She said, Before we met, cold as a stone is,
I was; but now am Venus, thou Adonis.
Such heights of Passion's-love uttered these two,
As youngest Lovers, when they 'gin to woo:
For Cupid, reign over Mankind still will have;
He governs from the Cradle to the Grave.
Their Virtue's such, they would not sin, nor tarry,
So heated, vowed a Contract, then to marry.
This Marriage now divulged was every where
To neighbour Beggars, Beggars far and near;
The Day appointed, and the Marriage set,
The Lame, the Blind, the Deaf, they all were met:
Such throngs of Beggars, Women, Children, seen,
Mustered all on the Town's fair Grassy-Green:
The Bridegroom's led between two Lame men, so,
Because our Bridegroom fast he could not go.
The Bride was led by Blind-men; him behind,
Because you know that Love is always blind.
The Hedg-Priest then was called for, did him bring,
Marri'd them both with an old Curtain-Ring:
No Father there was found, or could be ever;
She was so old, that there was none to give her.
With acclamations now of louder joy,
Prayed Hymen Priapus to send a boy,
To show a Miracle; in Vows most deep
The Parish swore their Children all to keep.
Then Tom-a-Bedlam wound his Horn, at best;
Their Trumpet now, to bring away the Feast;
Picked Marrow-bones they had found in the Street,
Carrots kicked out of Kennels with their feet;
Crusts gathered up, for Biscuit, 'twas so dri'd,
Alms-tubs Olio Podridoes had beside:
Many such Dishes had, but it would cumber
Any to name them; more than I can number.
Then came the Banquet (that must never fail)
Which the Town gave, that's White-bread, strong Ale.
Each was so tipsy, that they could not go,
And yet would dance, and cried for Music Ho;
Gridirons and Tongs, with Keys, they played on too,
And blind-men sung to them, as use to do:
Some whistled then, and hollow sticks did sound,
And thus melodiously they played a Round:
LameMen, lame Women, mingled, said, Advance;
And so, all limping, jovially did dance:
The Deaf-men too, for they could not forbear
When they saw this, although they did not hear,
Which was their happiness. Now to his House
The Bridegroom brought the Bride, each drunk as Mouse.
No room for any but them two, they saw,
So laid them both in bed of good fresh Straw.
Then took their leave, put out their Rushen-light;
But they themselves did revel all the Night.
The Bridegroom ruffles now, kissed, and said, Friend;
But when he kissed, thought 'twas at the other End,
And cried her mercy, said he could not look,
It was so dark, and thought he had mistook.
No, said the Bride most sweetly, you are right,
As if our Taper here was shining bright.
Now Love's Hesperides would touch the same,
That Place, O Place! which Place no tongue should name.
She, gentle Dame, with roving hand, indeed,
Instead of Crutches, found a broken Reed.
They both, now filled with Ale, Brains in it did steep;
So, arm in arm, our Lovers fell asleep.
So for the Will, though nothing else indeed,
To Love the Beggars built a Pyramid.
A Tale of his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, called, The Philosopher's
I Through a Cranny there did spy,
A grave Philosopher all sad,
With a dim Taper burning by,
His Study was in Mourning clad.
He sighed, and did lament his state,
Cursing Dame Nature, for 'twas she,
That did allot him such a Fate,
To make him of Mankind to be.
All other Animals, their Mold
Of thousand Passions makes them free,
Since they're not subject unto Gold,
Which doth corrupt Mankind we see.
The busy Merchant plows the Main,
The Pleading-Lawyer for his Fee;
Pious Divines for Lawful Gain,
Mechanics all still Coz'ners be.
With Ploughshares, Farmers wound the Earth,
Look to their Cattle, Swine, and Sheep,
To multiply their Seed, Corn's birth,
And all for Money, which they keep.
The Sun-burnt Dame prevents the Day,
(As her laborious Bees for Honey)
Doth milk her Kine, and spins away
Her fatal Thread of Life for Money.
Mankind doth on God Pluto call,
To serve him still, is all their pleasure:
Love here doth little, Money all;
For of this World it is the measure.
Beasts do despise this Orient Mettle;
Each freely grazing fills his Maw:
After Love's procreating, settle
To softer sleep, wise Nature's Law.
They're not Litigious, but are mute;
False Propositions never make:
Nor of unknown things do dispute;
Follies, for wise things do not take.
Or Flowery Rhet'rick to deceive;
Nor Logic to enforce the wrong:
Or tedious History to weave,
Troubling the Hearers all along.
Nor study the enamelled Sky,
Thinking they're governed by each Star;
But scorn Man's false Astrology,
And think themselves just as they are.
Their Pride not being so supreme,
Celestial Bodies moving thus,
Poor Mortals each awaking dream,
To think those Lights were made for us.
Nor are they troubled where they run;
What the Sun's Matter it might be;
Whether the Earth moves, or the Sun,
And yet they know as well as we.
Nor do they with grave troubled looks,
By studious Learning for to stay,
Or multiplicity of Books,
To put them out of Truth's right way.
For Policies, Beasts never weave,
Or subt'ler Traps do ever lay,
With false dissembling, which deceive,
Their Kind to ruin, or betray.
No hot ambitions in them are;
Trumpets are silent, Drums do cease:
No troublers in their Kind in War,
For to destroy, but all for Peace.
The Stranger valued Jemms that dress
Our beauteous Ladies like the day,
A Parrot's Feathers are no less;
And gossips too as well as they.
Man's ever troubled about his Fame,
For Glory and Ambition hot:
When Beasts are constantly the same;
In them those Follies enter not:
Nor hope of Worlds to come, that's higher,
With several Sects divisions make;
Or fear an everlasting Fire,
But quiet sleep, and so awake.
Man still with thoughts himself torments,
Various desires, what shall be;
And in his life hath small contents:
Beasts pleased with what they have, not we.
Repining Man, for what is past,
Hating the present what they see,
Frighted with what's to come at last:
Beasts pleased with what is, and must be.
Ease Man doth hate, and Business store;
A burden to himself he is:
Weary of time, yet wishes more:
Beasts all these Vanities they miss.
Self-loving Man so proud a Dirt,
Vain 'bove all things, when understood;
Studies always himself to hurt:
When Beasts are wise to their own good.
Man makes himself a troubled way,
Runs into several dangers still,
When in those thoughts Beasts never stray,
But do avoid them with their will.
Man's troubled Head and Brain still swelling
Beyond the Power of Senses five,
Not capable of those things telling:
Beasts beyond Senses do not strive.
Nature's just measure, Senses are,
And no Impossibles desire:
Beasts seek not after things that's far,
Or Toys or Baubles still admire.
Beasts Slander not, or Falsehoods raise,
But full of Truth, as Nature taught;
And wisely shun dissembling ways,
Follow Dame Nature as they ought.
Nor to false Gods do sacrifice,
Or promise Vows to break them; no:
No Doctrine to delude with Lies,
Or worship Gods they do not know.
Nor envy any that do rise,
Or joyful seem at those that fall;
Or crooked ways against others tries;
But love their Kind, themselves, and all.
Hard labour suffer when they must;
When over-aw'd, they wisely bend;
Only in Patience then they trust,
As Misery's and Affliction's Friend.
They seek not after Beauty's blaze,
To tempt their appetite when dull;
But drink the Stream that Tempests raise,
And grumble not when they are full.
They take no Physic to destroy
That Health which Nature to them gave:
Nor ruled by Tyrants Laws, annoy,
Yet happy seem with what they have.
With cares Men break their sweet repose,
Like Wheels that wear with turning round:
Beasts quiet thoughts their Eye-lids close,
And in soft sleep all cares they drowned.
No Rattles, Fairings, Ribbons, Strings,
Fiddles, Pipes, Minstrelses, them move,
Or Bugle Bracelets, or fine Rings,
And without Cupid makes Love.
O happy Beasts! that spend the day
In pleasure with their nearest Kin,
And all is lawful in their way,
And live and dye without a sin.
Their Conscience ne'er troubled is;
We made so, yet forbid it too:
For Nature here is not amiss,
We strive against what we're made to do.
Beasts need not Language, they despise
Unuseful things, all Men's delight:
Those Marks which Language from doth rise,
If pleased with them, discourse they might.
And out of words they argue not,
But reason out of things they do:
When we vain Gossipings have got,
They quiet silent Lives have too.
Complained of Scholars, that they sought
With envious watching, and with spite,
To leave the good to find a fault
In any Author that doth write.
O vain Philosophy! their Laws
With hard words still for matter brings,
Which nothing is, nor knows the cause
Of any thing; unuseful things.
Why are our Learned then so proud,
Thinking to bring us to their bow?
And Ignorance, Wisdom allow'd,
And know not that they do not know?
Motion's cessation is the end
Of Animals, both Beasts and Men;
The longest Lives to that do tend,
And to Death's Palace, his dark Den.
Or that Beasts breath doth downwards go,
And that Men's Souls do upward rise;
No Post from that World comes you know:
It puzzled Solomon the Wise.
Thus he complained, and was annoyed,
Our grave Philosopher for's birth,
That he was made to be destroyed,
Or turned to sad or colder Earth.
I piti'd him, and his sad case,
Wishing our Vicar him to teach;
For to infuse a Saving-grace,
By his Tongue's Rhet'rick for to preach.
SEVERAL Feigned Stories IN PROSE The Second BO