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or dropt indifferently. We ourselves still use either "beloved" or "belov'd" according as the rhyme, or measure, or the purpose of more or less solemnity may require. Let the reader then only adopt the pronunciation of the poet and of the court, at which he lived, both with respect to the final e and to the accentuation of the last syllable: I would then venture to ask, what even in the colloquial language of elegant and unaffected women, (who are the peculiar mistresses of "pure English and undefiled,") what could we hear more natural, or seemingly more unstudied, than the following stanzas from Chaucer's TROILUS AND Cre


"And after this forth to the gate he wente,
Ther as Creseide out rode a ful gode paas,
And up and doun there made he many' a wente,
And to himselfe ful oft he said, Alas!

Fro hennis rode my blisse and my solas:
As wouldè blisful God now for his joie,
I might her sene agen come in to Troie !
And to the yondir hil I gan her gide,
Alas! and there I toke of her my leve:
And yond I saw her to her fathir ride;
For sorow of whiche mine hert shall to-cleve;
And hithir home I came whan it was eve,
And here I dwel, out-cast from allè joie,
And shal, til I maie sene her efte in Troie.

panion, the least apt to fly above his company though never lagging behind in any conversation.

A memoir of Cotton by Sir Harris Nicolas is prefixed to the beautifully illustrated edition of the Complete Angler of 1836. This edition was published by Mr. Pickering, and, as his friend the Editor declares, is very largely indebted to his taste and exertions and bibliographical knowledge for the value which the volumes possess.

I believe that Mr. Pickering intends to bring out a select edition of the occasional poems of Cotton. S. C.]

"And of himselfe imaginid he ofte To ben defaitid, pale and woxin lesse

Than he was wonte, and that men saidin softe,

What may it be? who can the sothè gesse,
Why Troilus hath al this hevinesse?

And al this n' as but his melancolie,
That he had of himselfe suche fantasie.
Anothir time imaginin he would

That every wight, that past him by the wey,
Had of him routhe, and that thei saien should,
I am right sory, Troilus wol dey!

And thus he drove a daie yet forth or twey,

ye have herde suche life gan he to lede
As he that stode betwixin hope and drede:
For which him likid in his songis shewe
Th' encheson of his wo as he best might,
And made a songe of wordis but a fewe,
Somwhat his woful herté for to light,
And whan he was from every mann'is sight
With softé voice he of his lady dere,
That absent was, gan sing as ye may here:

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This song, when he thus songin had, ful sone
He fil agen into his sighis olde:

And every night, as was his wonte to done;
He stodè the bright moonè to beholde
And all his sorowe to the moone he tolde,
And said: I wis, whan thou art hornid newe,
I shall be glad, if al the world be trewe!"4

Another exquisite master of this species of style, where the scholar and the poet supplies the material, but the perfect well-bred gentleman the expressions and the arrangement, is George Herbert. As from

4 [Boke V. The first lines of the first stanza stand thus in the original:

And aftir this he to the yatis wente

and the first of the last stanza thus:

This songè when he thus songin had sone. S. C.]

the nature of the subject, and the too frequent quaintness of the thoughts, his TEMPLE; or SACRED POEMS AND PRIVATE EJACULATIONS are comparatively but little known, I shall extract two poems. The first is a sonnet, equally admirable for the weight, number, and expression of the thoughts, and for the simple dignity of the language. Unless, indeed, a fastidious taste should object to the latter half of the sixth line. The second is a poem of greater length, which I have chosen not only for the present purpose, but likewise as a striking example and illustration of an assertion hazarded in a former page of these sketches: namely, that the characteristic fault of our elder poets is the reverse of that, which distinguishes too many of our more recent versifiers; the one conveying the most fantastic thoughts in the most correct and natural language; the other in the most fantastic language conIveying the most trivial thoughts. The latter is a riddle of words; the former an enigma of thoughts. The one reminds me of an odd passage in Drayton's IDEAS:

As other men, so I myself do muse,

Why in this sort I wrest invention so;
And why these giddy metaphors I use,
Leaving the path the greater part do go;
I will resolve you: I am lunatic ! 5

The other recalls a still odder passage in THE SYNAGOGUE: or THE SHADOW OF THE TEMPLE, a connected series of poems in imitation of Herbert's TEMPLE, and, in some editions, annexed to it.

O how my mind

Is gravell'd!

Not a thought,

That I can find,

5 Sonnet IX.

But's ravell'd

All to nought!

Short ends of threds,

And narrow shreds

Of lists,

Knots, snarled ruffs,

Loose broken tufts

Of twists,

Are my torn meditations ragged clothing,
Which, wound and woven, shape a suit for nothing:
One while I think, and then I am in pain
To think how to unthink that thought again.

Immediately after these burlesque passages I cannot proceed to the extracts promised, without changing the ludicrous tone of feeling by the interposition of the three following stanzas of Herbert's.


Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky,

The dew shall weep thy fall to-night;
For thou must die.

Sweet rose, whose hue angry and brave
Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye:
Thy root is ever in its grave,

And thou must die.

Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses,
A box, where sweets compacted lie:
My music shews, ye have your closes,
And all must die.

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[The Synagogue, a collection of poems generally appended to the Temple, has been retained in Mr. Pickering's edition of 1835. They were first printed," as the Preface mentions, A. D. 1640, and have been, with much probability, attributed to the Rev. Christopher Harvie, M. A. The poem quoted is at p. 274 of the edit. S. C.]



Lord, with what care hast thou begirt us round!
Parents first season us; then schoolmasters
Deliver us to laws; they send us bound
To rules of reason, holy messengers,
Pulpits and Sundays, sorrow dogging sin,
Afflictions sorted, anguish of all sizes,
Fine nets and stratagems to catch us in,
Bibles laid open, millions of surprises;
Blessings beforehand, ties of gratefulness,

The sound of Glory ringing in our ears:
Without, our shame; within, our consciences;
Angels and grace, eternal hopes and fears.
Yet all these fences and their whole array
One cunning bosom-sin blows quite away.


Dear friend, sit down, the tale is long and sad :
And in my faintings, I presume, your love
Will more comply than help. A Lord I had,
And have, of whom some grounds, which may improve,
I hold for two lives, and both lives in me.

To him I brought a dish of fruit one day,
And in the middle placed my heart. But he
(I sigh to say)

Look'd on a servant, who did know his eye,
Better than you know me, or (which is one)
Than I myself. The servant instantly,
Quitting the fruit, seiz'd on my heart alone,
And threw it in a font, wherein did fall

A stream of blood, which issued from the side

Of a great rock: I well remember all,

And have good cause: there it was dipt and dyed,
And wash'd, and wrung: the very wringing yet
"Your heart was foul, I fear."

Enforceth tears.

Indeed 'tis true. I did and do commit

Many a fault, more than my lease will bear;

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