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*Love is reasonable, and reason has no reason, if two that are disunited from each other, can yet remain together and undivided.
+ This funeral song.
+ "These verses, which would form a very appropriate song for Autolycus, were arranged as a glee for three voices, by Dr. Wilson, about the year 1667. They are published in Playford's Musical Companion in 1673; in Warren's Collection of Glees and Catches, and in S. Webbe's Convito Harmonico. The words were, I believe, first ascribed to Shakspeare by Clark, in 1824, in his Words of Glees, Madrigals, &c.; but he has not given his authority for so doing. It is stated, however, that they have since
Such is the sacred hunger for gold.
Then come to my pack,
While I cry
"What d'ye lack,
What d'ye buy?
For here it is to be sold."
I have beauty, honour, grace,
Fortune, favour, time, and place,
And what else thou wouldst request,
E'en the thing thou likest best;
First let me have but a touch of your gold.
Then come to me, lad,
Thou shalt have
What thy dad
For here it is sold.
Madam, come, see what you lack,
I've complexions in my pack;
White and red you may have in this place,
To hide your old and wrinkled face.
First let me have but a touch of your gold,
Then you shall seem
Like a girl of fifteen,
Although you be threescore and ten years old.
been discovered in a common-place book, written about Shakspeare's time, with his name attached to them, and with this indirect evidence in favour of their being written by him, that the other pieces in the collection are attributed to their proper writers, Mr. Dance was induced to consider the song to have been written by Shakspeare."-Notes and Queries, Nov. 10, 1849.
This poem was first printed in 1609, with our author's name, at the end of the 4to. edition of his Sonnets.]
FROM off a hill whose concave womb re-worded*
A plaintful story from a sistering vale,
My spirits to attend this double voice accorded,
And down I lay to list the sad-tuned tale:
Ere long espied a fickle maid full pale,
Tearing of papers, breaking rings a-twain,
Storming her world with sorrow's wind and rain.t
Upon her head a platted hive of straw,
Which fortified her visage from the sun,
Whereon the thought might think sometime it saw
The carcase of a beauty spent and done.
Time had not scythed all that youth begun,
Nor youth all quit; but, spite of heaven's fell rage,
Some beauty peep'd through lattice of sear'd age.
Oft did she heave her napkin‡ to her eyne,
Which on it had conceited characters, §
Laundring|| the silken figures in the brine
That season'd woe had pelleted in tears, T
And often reading what contents it bears;
As often shrieking undistinguish'd woe,
In clamours of all size, both high and low.
Sometimes her levell'd eyes their carriage ride,*
As they did battery to the spheres intend;
Sometime diverted++ their poor balls are tied
To the orbed earth; sometimes they do extend
Their view right on; anon their gazes lend
To every place at once, and nowhere fix'd,
The mind and sight distractedly commix'd.
Her hair, nor loose nor tied in formal plat,
Proclaim'd in her a careless hand of pride;
For some, untuck'd, descended her sheaved hat,‡‡
Hanging her pale and pined cheek beside;
Some in their threaden fillet still did bide,
And, true to bondage, would not break from thence,
Though slackly braided in loose negligence.
Fanciful images. **The allusion is to a piece of ordnance. ++ Turned from their former direction.
† I. e. sighs and tears.
+ Handkerchief. ¶ Made into round tears.
tt Her straw hat.
A thousand favours from a maund* she drew
Of amber, crystal, and of beaded jet,
Which one by one she in a river threw,
Upon whose weeping margent she was set,-
Like usury, applying wet to wet,
Or monarchs' hands, that let not bounty fall
Where want cries some, but where excess begs all.
Of folded schedulest had she many a one,
Which she perused, sigh'd, tore, and gave the flood,
Crack'd many a ring of posied gold and bone,
Bidding them find their sepulchres in mud;
Found yet more letters sadly penn'd in blood,
With sleided silk feat and affectedly
Enswathed and seal'd to curious secrecy.
These often bathed she in her fluxive§ eyes,
And often kiss'd, and often 'gan to tear;
Cried, "O false blood! thou register of lies,
What unapproved witness dost thou bear!
Ink would have seem'd more black and damned here!"
This said, in top of rage, the lines she rents,
Big discontent so breaking their contents.
A reverend man that grazed his cattle nigh,
Sometime a blusterer, that the ruffle knew,
Of court, of city, and had let go by
The swiftest hours, observed as they flew ;T
Towards this afflicted fancy** fastly drew;
And, privileged by age, desires to know
In brief, the grounds and motives of her woe.
So slides he down upon his grained bat,
And comely-distant sits he by her side;
When he again desires her, being sat,
Her grievance with his hearing to divide:
If that from him there may be aught applied
Which may her suffering ecstasy assuage,
'Tis promised in the charity of age.
Father," she says, "though in me you behold
The injury of many a blasting hour,
Let it not tell your judgment I am old;
Not age, but sorrow, over me hath power:
I might as yet have been a spreading flower,
Fresh to myself, if I had self applied
Love to myself and to no love beside.
† Rolls of paper.
If the reader will consult the Royal Letters, &c., in the British Museum, he will find that anciently the ends of a piece of narrow ribbon were ravelled and placed under the seals of letters, to connect them more closely. § Flowing. Bustle.
I. e. though engaged in the bustle of the court and city, had not suffered the busy and gay period of youth to pass by without observation. ** This afflicted love-sick lady.
His staff, on which the grain of the wood was visible.
"But woe is me! too early I attended
A youthful suit (it was to gain my grace)
Of one by nature's outwards so commended,
That maidens' eyes stuck over all his face:
Love lack'd a dwelling, and made him her place;
And when in his fair parts she did abide,
She was new lodged, and newly deified.
"His browny locks did hang in crooked curls;
And every light occasion of the wind
Upon his lips their silken parcels hurls.
What's sweet to do, to do will aptly find:*
Each eye that saw him did enchant the mind;
For on his visage was in little drawn,
What largeness thinks in paradise was sawn.†
"Small show of man was yet upon his chin;
His phoenix down‡ began but to appear,,
Like unshorn velvet, on that termless § skin,
Whose bare out-bragg'd the web it seem'd to wear;
Yet show'd his visage, by that cost, most dear;
And nice affections wavering stood in doubt
If best 'twere as it was, or best without.
His qualities were beauteous as his form,
For maiden tongued he was, and thereof free;
Yet, if men moved him, was he such a storm
As oft 'twixt May and April is to see,
When winds breathe sweet, unruly though they be.
His rudeness so with his authorized youth,
Did livery falseness in a pride of truth.
"Well could he ride, and often men would say,
That horse his mettle from his rider takes :
Proud of subjection, noble by the sway,
What rounds, what bounds, what course, what stop he makes!"
And controversy hence a question takes,
Whether the horse by him became his deed,
Or he his manege by the well-doing steed.
"But quickly on his side the verdict went;
His real habitude gave life and grace
To appertainings and to ornament,
Accomplish'd in himself, not in his case:
All aids, themselves made fairer by their place,
Came for additions; yet their purposed trim
Pieced not his grace, but were all graced by him.
*I. e. things pleasant to be done will easily find people enough to do them. † I. e. seen. ✰ I suppose she means matchless, rare down. Indescribable.