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which rather resembled a Polish diet than a British parliament, would not have separated without some signal, and perhaps bloody catastrophe, if the political art of Halifax, who was at the head of the small moderate party, called Trimmers, joined to the reluctance of either faction to commence hostilities against an enemy as fully prepared as themselves, had not averted so eminent a crisis.
the mud with his burden. In another, Topham, the Serjeant of the house of commons, with the other officers of parliament, liberate the members, and cram the bishops into the shew-box.
A ItAREE SHOW.
Where'er about I go,
Attend my raree show,
That monstrous foul beast, with a hey, with a hey,
O Cowper, Hughes, and Snow,
Stop thief with raree show,
For if he should escape, with a hey, with a hey,
He'll carry good Dom. Com.
Unto the pope of Rome,
Be quiet, ye dull tools, with a hey, with a hey,
Do not all gaping stand
To see my slight of hand,
'Tis not to Rome that I, with a hey, with a hey,
But Oxford, York, Carlisle,
And round about the isle,
But if they would come out, with a hey, with a hey,'
To yield up all they have,
And Tower lords to save,
In all particulars, excepting the actual assassination, the parliament of Oxlord resembled the assembly of the States General at Blois. The general character of the Duke of Monmouth certainly had not many points of similarity to that of the Duke of Guise; but in one particular incident his conduct had been formed on that model, and it is an incident which makes a considerable figure in
Now that is very hsrd, with a hey, with a hey.
And Clifford, Dauby, Hide,
Halifax docs nil outride.
Holy Ghost, in bag of cloak, with a hey, with a hey.
And Rosamond in bower.
All badges are of power.
And popularity, with a hey, with a hey.
But Dom. Com. in little ease.
Will all the world displease.
Let 'um hate me, so they fear, with a hey, with a hey.
Two states, in blind house pent,
M"ke brave strong government.
But child of heathen Hoboes, with a hey, with a hey.
For fleecing England's flocks.
Long fed with bits and knocks,
What's past is not to come, with a hey, with a hey,
Then hey for Oxford ho.
Strong government, raree show,
Raree show is resouled, with a hey, with a bey.
May the mighty weight at's back
Make 'i lecherous loins to crack.
the tragedy. In September 1679. after the king's illness, Monmouth was disgraced, and obliged to leave the kingdom. He retired to Holland, where he resided until the intrigues of Shaftesbury assured him the support of a party so strongly popular, that he might return, in open defiance of the court. In the November following, he conceived his presence necessary to animate his partizans; and, without the king's permission for his return, he embarked at the Brill, and landed at London on the f 7th, at midnight, where the tumultuous rejoicings of the popular party more than compensated for the obscurity of his departure f. This
Methinks he seems to stagger, with a bey, with a hey.
God's fiah he's stuck in the mire.
And all the fat's in the fire,
Help Cooper, Hughs, and Snow, with a hey, with a hey,
So, so, the gyant's down.
Let's masters out of pound.
And now you've freed the nation, with a hey, with a hey,
With pensioners all and some,
Into this chest of Rome,
And thrust in six-and-twenty, with a hey, with a hey,
And hoot them hence away
To Cologn or Breda,
Haloo, the bunt's begun, with a hey, with a hey,
Raree show in French lap
Is gone to take a nap,
And succession has the clap,
t "The news of his landing being reported by the watch, it soon spread abroad through the whole city ; insomuch, that before day-light they rang the bells at St Giles in the Fields, placing several flambeaus on the top of the steeple, and divers great bonefires were made, two of which were very large, one in the Palace-yard at Westminster, and the other in Thames-street, near the custom-house, which was kindled in the morning, and maintained burning all day till evening, and then the universal joy of the people was expressed in most of the streets throughout London and Westminster by bone-fires, fireworks, and ringing of bells, accompanied with loud acclamations of joy, to the great grief of the papists." An Account of the heroick Life and magnaiiimout Actiom of the most illustrious Protestant Prince, James, Duhe of Monmouth. Loudon, 1083. p. 95.
bold step was, in all its circumstances, very similar to the return of the Duke of Guise from his government to Paris, against the express command of Henry the second, together with his reception by the populace, whom he came prepared to head in insurrection. Above all, the bill of exclusion bore a striking resemblance to the proceedings of the League against the King of Navarre, presumptive heir of the throne, whom, on account of his attachment to the protestant faith, they threatened to deprive of the succession.
The historical passages, corresponding in many particulars with such striking accuracy, offered an excellent groundwork for a political play, and the " Duke of Guise " was composed accordingly; Dryden making use of the scenes which he had formerly written on the subject, and Lee contributing the remainder, which he eked out by some scenes and speeches adopted from the " Massacre of Paris," then lying by him in manuscript. The court, however, considered the representation of the piece as at least of dubious propriety. The parallel was capable of being so extended as to exhibit no very flattering picture of the king's politics; and, on the other hand, it is possible, that the fate of the Duke of Guise, as identified with Monmouth, might shock the feelings of Charles, and the justice of the audience.
Accordingly, we learn from the " Vindication," that the representation of the piece was prohibited; that it lay in the hands of the lord chamberlain (Henry Lord Arlington) from before mid-summer, 1682,^*111 two months after that term; and that orders were not finally given for its being acted until the month of December in the same year. The king's tenderness for the Duke of Monmouth had by this time so far given way, that he had ordered his arrest at Stafford; and, from the dark preparations on both sides, it was obvious, that no measures were any longer to be kept betwixt them. All the motives of delicacy and prudence, which had prevented the representation of this obnoxious party performance, were now therefore annihilated or overlooked.
Our author's part of the " Duke of Guise " is important, though not of great extent, as his scenes contain some of the most striking political sketches. Thedcbate of the Council of Sixteen, with which the play opens, was his composition; the whole of the fourth act, which makes him responsible for the alleged parallel betwixt Guise and Monmouth, and the ridicule cast upon the sheriffs and citizens of the popular party, with the first part of the fifth, which implicates him in vindicating the assassination of Guise. The character and sentiments of the king, in these scenes, are drawn very closely after Davila, as the reader will easily see, from the Italian original subjoined in the notes. That picturesque historian had indeed anticipated almost all that even a poet could do, in conveying a portraiture, equally minute and striking, of the stormy period which he had undertaken to describe; and, had his powers of description been inferior, it is probable, that Dryden, hampered as he was, by restraints of prudence and delicacy, would not have chosen to go far beyond the authority to which he referred the lord chamberlain. The language of the play, at least in these scenes, seldom rises above that of the higher tone of historical oratory; and the descriptions are almost literally taken from Davila, and thrown into beautiful verse. In the character of Marmoutiere, there seems to be an allusion to the duchess of Buccleuch and Monmouth, whose influence was always, and sometimes successfully, used to detach her husband from the desperate schemes of Shaftesbury and Armstrong. The introduction of the necromancer, Malicorn, seems to refer to some artifices, by which the party of Monmouth endeavoured to call to their assistance the sanction of supernatural powers *. The particular story of Malicorn is said to be taken from a narrative in Rosset's Histoires Tragiqnes, a work which the present editor has never seen. In the conference between Malicorn and Mclanax, Dryden has made much use of his astrological knowledge; and its mystical terms give a solemnity to the spirit's predictions, which was probably deepened by the poet's secret belief in this visionary study. As he borrowed liberally from Davila in the other parts of the play, he has not here disdained to use the assistance of Pulci, from whose romantic poem he has translated one or two striking passages, as the reader will find upon consulting the notes. The last scene betwixt the necromancer and the fiend is horribly fine:
* "A relation was published in the name of one Elizabeth Freeman, afterwards called the mayor »f Hatfield, setting forth, that, on the 24th of January, the apparition of a woman, ail in white [the Duke of Monmouth's mother was here to be understood], with a white veil over her face, accosted her with these words; 'Sweetheart, the 15th of May is appointed for the blood-royal to be poisoned. Be not afraid, for I am sent to tell thee.' That on the 27th the same appearance stood before her again, and she having then acquired courage enough to lay it under the usual adjuration, in the name, &c. it assumed a more glorious shape, and said in a harsher tone of voice, 'Tell King Charles from me, and bid him not remove his parliament (i. e. from London to Oxford), and stand to his council;' adding, 'Do as I bid you.' That on the 26th it appeared to her a third time, but said only, 'Do your message;' and that on the next night, when she saw it for the last time, it said nothing at all. Those, who depend upon the people for support, must try all manner of practices upon them, and such fooleries as these sometimes operate more forcibly than experiments of a more rational kind. Care was besides taken to have this relation attested by Sir Joseph Jordan, a justice of peace, and the rector of Hatfield, Dr Lee, who was one of the king's chaplains. Nay, the message was actually sent to his majesty, and tht whole forgery very officially circulated over the kingdom." Haij-ji's UUtoij Vol. L p. 5o2.