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And next to him old Saturne, that was wont

be beft.

IX.

For during Saturnes ancient raigne it's fayd
That all the world with goodneffe did abound;
All loved vertue, no man was affrayd
Of force, ne fraud in wight was to be found;
No warre was knowne, no dreadful trompets
found;

Peace univerfal rayn'd mongft men and beafts:

And all things freely grew out of the ground: Iuftice fate high ador'd with folemne feasts, And to all people did divide her dred beheafts:

X.

Moft facred Vertue fhe of all the reft,

Refembling God in his imperiall might ; Whofe foveraine powre is herein most exprest, That both to good and bad he dealeth right, And all his workes with iuftice hath bedight. That powre he alfo doth to princes lend, And makes them like himfelfe in glorious

fight

To fit in his own feate, his cause to end,

IX. 1. For during Saturnes ancient raigne &c.] From Ovid, Met. i. 89.

"Aurea prima fata eft ætas, quæ vindice nullo,
"Sponte fua, fine lege, fidem rectumque colebat.
"Pœna metufque aberant, &c." JORTIN.

And rule his people right, as he doth recom

mend.

XI.

Dread foverayne goddeffe, that doest highest fit
In feate of iudgement in th' Almighties ftead,
And with magnificke might and wondrous wit
Doeft to thy people righteous doome aread,
That furtheft nations filles with awfull dread,
Pardon the boldneffe of thy bafest thrall,
That dare difcourfe of fo divine a read,
As thy great iuftice praysed over all ;
The inftrument whereof loe here thy Artegall.

XI. 1. goddeffe,] See the Introduction to the firft Book of this Poem, ft. 4. CHURCH.

XI. 2.

ftead,] All the editions have conformed to this neceffary emendation made by the first folio. The poet's own reads place. TODD.

CANTO I.

Artegall trayn'd in Iuftice lore
Irenaes queft purfewed;
He doeth avenge on Sanglier
His Ladies bloud embrewed.

I.

THOUGH vertue then were held in higheft

price,

In those old times of which I doe intreat, Yet then likewife the wicked feede of vice Began to fpring; which shortly grew full

great,

And with their boughes the gentle plants did

beat:

But evermore fome of the vertuous race Rose up, infpired with heroicke heat, That cropt the branches of the sient base, And with ftrong hand their fruitfull rancknes did deface.

ARG. 2. Irenaes queft purfewed;] This adventure of the relief of Irena or Irene is plainly introduced as a compliment to Lord Grey of Wilton, to whom Spenfer was Secretary. That noble Lord was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Irena or Irene is an anagram or traufpofition of the letters of Ierne, the ancient name of that kingdom. CHURCH.

Sanglier] Perhaps Shan

ARG. 3.

Oneal. See vol. ii. p. cli. TODD.

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II.

Such firft was Bacchus, that with furious might All th' eaft before untam'd did over-ronne, And wrong repreffed, and establisht right, Which lawleffe men had formerly fordonné: There Iuftice firft her princely rule begonne. Next Hercules his like enfample fhewed, Who all the weft with equall conqueft wonne, And monftrous tyrants with his club fubdewed ;

The club of Iuftice dread with kingly powre endewed.

III.

And fuch was he of whom I have to tell,
The Champion of true Iuftice, Artegall :
Whom (as ye lately mote remember well)
An hard adventure, which did then befall,
Into redoubted perill forth did call;
That was, to fuccour a diftreffed Dame
Whom a ftrong Tyrant did uniuftly thrall,
And from the heritage, which he did clame,
Did with ftrong hand withhold; Grantorto
was his name.

II. 1. Such first next Canto, ft. 5. III. 3.

was Bacchus, &c.] See the note on the HURD.

as ye lately &c.] See F. Q. iv. vi. 42. CHURCH. Grantorto] Ital. gran torto,

III. 9.

great injury and wrong. And though Grantorto may fignify tyranny and injustice in general, he may fignify fometimes the king of Spain. UPTON.

IV.

Wherefore the Lady, which Irena hight,

Did to the Faerie Queene her
way addreffe,
To whom complayning her afflicted plight,
She her besought of gratious redreffe:

That foveraine queene, that mightie em-
pereffe,

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Whofe glorie is to aide all fuppliants pore,
And of weake princes to be patroneffe,
Chofe Artegall to right her to restore;
For that to her he feem'd best skild in righteous
lore.

V.

For Artegall in iuftice was upbrought
Even from the cradle of his infancie,

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And all the depth of rightfull doome was taught

By faire Aftræa, with great induftrie,
Whileft here on earth the lived mortallie :

For, till the world from his perfection fell
Into all filth and foule iniquitie,

Aftræa here mongst earthly men did dwell, And in the rules of iuftice them inftructed

well.

IV. I.

Irena] The old quarto reads Eirena; but in all the following paflages 'tis fpelt Irena. But what befides thows Eirena not to be the true reading, is, that Eirene occurs in the ninth Canto of this Book as one of Mercilla's attendants. Ambiguity therefore is avoided by reading Irena. UPTON.

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