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DITTO .....1605
T: Kyd

459

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1623

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The Spanish Tragedy; or, Hieronimo is Mad again • DITTO

Middlefon. · Dekkar ••••1604
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The Honest Whore

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[Part the Second]

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The Miseries of Inforced Marriage........WILKINS....1607

Lingua; or, The Combat of the Tongue and the Five

Senses for Superiority..

The Merry Devil of Edmonton

160

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THE

ANCIENT BRITISH DRAMA.

THE

FOUR P's.

3

I

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JOHN HEYWOOD, or Heewood, one of the most ancient dramatic writers in the English language, was born in the city of London, and educated in the university of Oxford, at the ancient Hostle called Broadgate's, in St Aldgate's Parish. He was in his time more celebrated for his wit than his - learning; and having some fair possessions at North Mims, he resided there after he left Oxford, and became intimately acquainted with Sir Thomas More, who lived in that neighbourhood. Here the latter wrote his celebrated work called Utopia, and is supposed to have assisted Heywood in the composition of his Epigrams. Through Sir Thomas More's means, it is probable our author was introduced to the knowledge of King Henry VIII., and of his daughter the princess, afterwards Queen Mary: by the former of whom, he was held in much esteem for the mirth and quickness of his conceits; and so much valued by the latter, that he was often, after she came to the throne, admitted to the honour of waiting upon and exercising his fancy before her, even to the time she lay languishing on her death-bed. His education having been in the Roman Catholic faith, he continued steadily attached to the tenets of that religion; and during the reigns of Edward VI., fell under the suspicion

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Wood, in his Athena Oxonienses, Vol. I. p. 149, positively fixes his birth at this place. Other writers have made him a native of North Mims, in Hertfordshire, but apparently without any authority. Bale, who lived nearest to the author's time, calls him Civis Londinensis; which words, though they do not absolutely prove that he was born in London, yet surely are sufficient, in a matter of this uncertainty, to warrant any one to conclude that he was a native of that city, as no circumstance appears to induce a belief that he acquired the title of citizen of London otherwise than by birth.

2 Peacham's Complete English Gentleman, 4to, 1627, p. 95,

3 Gabriel Harvey's MS. Note to Speyght's Chaucer, as quoted in Mr Steevens's Shakespeare, Vol. V. 4 Athen. Oxon. Vol. I. p. 149.

5" But to step backe to my teske, (though everie place I step to, yeeldes me sweeter discourse,) what "thinke you by Haywood, that scaped hanging with his mirth; the king being graciously, and (as I "thinke) truly perswaded, that a man that wrate so pleasant and harmelesse verses, could not have any "harmefull conceit against his proceedings, and so, by the honest motion of a gentleman of his chambe A

VOL I.

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