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H A R P A L U S.
AN ANCIENT ENGLISH PASTORAL.
This beautiful poem, which is perhaps the first attempt at pastoral writing in our language, is preserved among the SONGS AND SONNETTES of the earl of Surrey, &c. 470. 1574. in that part of the collection, which consists of pieces by UNCERTAIN AUCTOURS. These poems were first published in 1557, ten years after that accomplished nobleman fell a victim to the tyranny of Henry VIII: but it is presumed most of them were composed before the death of fir Thomas
See Surrey's poems, 4to. fol. 19. 49. Tho' written perhaps near half a century before the ShepHERD'S CALENDAR *, this will be found far superior to any of those Eclogues in natural unaffected sentiments, in fimplicity of Ayle, in easy flow of verification, and all the beauties of pastoral poetry. Spenser ought to have profit . ' ed more by so excellent a model.
Wyatt in 1541.
HILLID A was a faire maide,
As fresh, as any flower;
'To be his paramoure.
Harpalus, and eke Corin,
Were herdmen both yfere :
And thereto sing ful clere.
* Fir patlish:d in 1579,
Harpalus prevayled nought,
His labour all was lost;
he loved her moft.
Therefore wax he both pale and leane,
And dry as clod of clay:
His colour gone away.
His beard it had not long be shaves
His heare hong al unkempt: A man most fit even for the
grave; Whom spiteful love had fhent.
eyes were red, and all forwacht; His face besprent with teares: It seemed unhap had him long hatcht,
In middes of his dispaires.
His clothes were blacke, and also bare;
As one forlorne was hee; Upon his head alwaies he ware
A wreathe of willowe tree.
His beaftes he kept upon the hill,
And he sate in the dale;
to tell his tale.
As easy it were for to converte
The frost into a flame;
Whom thou fo faine wouldest frame.
Corin he liveth carèlesse :
He leapes among the leaves :
Thou reapest, he takes the sheaves.
My beastes a while your foode refraine,
herdmans founde : Whom spitefull love, alas! hath slaine,
Through girt with many a wounde.
But, wel-a-way! that nature wrought
Thee, Phillida, fo faire :
Thy beauty all tò deare.
What reason is that cruelty
With beauty should have part? Or els that such great tiranny
Should dwell in womans hart?
I fe therefore to shape my deathe
She cruelly is preft; To th’end that I
breathe : My dayes ben at the best.
O Cupide, graunt this my request,
And do not stoppe thine eares ; That Thee may feele within her breste
The paines of my dispaires :
Of Corin “whoe' is carelesse,
That she may crave her fee :
That lovd her faithfullye.
But since that I shal die her slave;
Her slave, and eke her thrall ;
This chaunce that is befall.
“ Here lieth unhappy Harpalus
By cruell love now slaine : “ Whom Phillida unjustly thus,
" Hath murdred with disdaine." VOL. II.