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SIR DAVID LYNDSAY
Meldrum's Duel with the English Champion Talbart
Supplication in Contemption of Side Tails
Directions for Cultivating a Hop-garden
Moral Reflections on the Wind
Allegorical Characters from 'The Mirror of Magistrates'
Henry Duke of Buckingham in the Infernal Regions JOHN HARRINGTON
Sonnet on Isabella Markham
Verses on a most stony-hearted Maiden SIR PHILIP SIDNEY
Times go by Turns
The Nymphs to their May-Queen
In praise of the renowned Lady Anne, Countess of Warwick
her not, and denied him that loved her
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116 118 119 120 121
122 122 123
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128 132 134 135 136 137
FROM SPENSER TO DRYDEN.
To Ben Jonson
141 141 144 144
Richard II., the morning before his Murder in Pomfret Castle
Selections from Sonnets
Introduction to the Poem on the Soul of Man
Spirituality of the Soul
Close of Christ's Victory and Triumph'
The Progress of the Soul MICHAEL DRAYTON
Description of Morning
Rinaldo at Mount Olivet
SIR HENRY WOTTON
Farewell to the Vanities of the World
243 243 245
Dr Corbet's Journey into France
Epitaph on the Countess of Pembroke
he hath left us
To a Lady admiring herself in a Looking-glass
Description of Parthenia
Instability of Human Greatness
Happiness of the Shepherd's Life
Marriage of Christ and the Church
SPECIMENS, WITH MEMOIRS,
OF THE LESS-KNOWN BRITISH POETS.
VERY little is told us (as usual in the beginnings of a literature) of the life and private history of Gower, and that little is not specially authentic or clearly consistent with itself. His life consists mainly of a series of suppositions, with one or two firm facts between-like a few stepping-stones insulated in wide spaces of water. He is said to have been born about the year 1325, and if so must have been a few years older than Chaucer; whom he, however, outlived. He was a friend as well as contemporary of that great poet, who, in the fifth book of his * Troilus and Cresseide,' thus addresses him :
O moral Gower, this bookë I direct,
Of your benignities and zealës good.' Gower, on the other hand, in his 'Confessio Amantis,' through the mouth of Venus, speaks as follows of Chaucer :
"And greet well Chaucer when ye meet,
The laud fulfill'd is over all,' &c.
The place of Gower's birth has been the subject of much controversy. Caxton asserts that he was a native of Wales. Leland, Bales, Pits, Hollingshed, and Edmondson contend, on the other hand, that he belonged to the Statenham family, in Yorkshire. In proof of this, a deed is appealed to, which is preserved among the ancient records of the Marquis of Stafford. To this deed, of which the local date is Statenham, and the chronological 1346, one of the subscribing witnesses is John Gower, who on the back of the deed is stated, in the handwriting of at least a century later, to be 'Sr John Gower the Poet.' Whatever may be thought of this piece of evidence, the proud tradition,' adds Todd, who had produced it, 'in the Marquis of Stafford's family has been, and still is, that the poet was of Statenham; and who would not consider the dignity of his genealogy augmented by enrolling among its worthies the moral Gower?'
From his will we know that he possessed the manor of Southwell, in the county of Nottingham, and that of Multon, in the county of Suffolk. He was thus a rich man, as well as probably a knight. The latter fact is inferred from the circumstance of his effigies in the church of St Mary Overies wearing a chaplet of roses, such as, says Francis Thynne, 'the knyghtes in old time used, either of gold or other embroiderye, made after the fashion of roses, one of the peculiar ornamentes of a knighte, as well as his collar of S.S.S., his guilte sword and spurres. Which chaplett or circle of roses was as well attributed to knyghtes, the lowest degree of honor, as to the higher degrees of duke, erle, &c., being knyghtes, for so I have seen John of Gaunte pictured in his chaplett of roses ; and King Edwarde the Thirde gave his chaplett to Eustace Rybamonte; only the difference was, that as they were of lower degree, so had they fewer roses placed on their chaplett or cyrcle of golde, one ornament deduced from the dukes crowne, which had the roses upon the top of the cyrcle, when the knights had them only upon the cyrcle or garlande itself.'
It has been said that Gower as well as Chaucer studied in the Temple. This, however, Thynne doubts, on the ground that it is most certevn to be gathered by cyrcumstances of