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THE SOUL'S ERRAND.
If Potentates reply, Give Potentates the lie.
Tell men of high condition
That rule affairs of state,
Their practice,-only hate.
Tell them that brave it most,
They beg for more by spending, Who, in their greatest cost,
Seek nothing but commending. And if they make reply, Then give them all the lie.
Tell zeal—it lacks devotion;
Tell Love-it is but lust;
Tell Flesh-it is but dust.
Tell Age-it daily wasteth;
Tell Honour-how it alters ;
Tell Favour how she falters.
Tell Wit-how much it wrangles
In tickle points of niceness ; Tell Wisdom—she entangles
Herself in over-wiseness. And when they do reply, Straight give them both the lie.
Tell Physic-of her boldness;
Tell Skill—it is pretension ;
Tell Law-it is contention.
Tell Fortune-of her blindness;
Tell Nature-of decay;
Tell Justice-of delay.
And if they will reply,
Tell Arts—they have no soundness,
But vary by esteeming;
And stand too much on seeming.
Tell Faith-it's fled the City;
Tell-how the Country erreth ;
Tell—Virtue least preferreth.
So when thou hast, as I
Commanded thee, done blabbing,
Deserves no less than stabbing,
DRAYTON was born of comparatively humble parentage in the parish of Atherstone in Warwickshire. In the capacity of page he obtained the patronage of the great. From his earliest years he displayed a warm enthusiasm to become a poet. He is one of the most voluminous of “the rhyming tribe ;" his works extend to above 100,000 verses. His “ Baron's Wars," a poetical narrative of the civil wars of Edward 11.'s reign, were a tribute to the prevailing taste for poetized history. The work on which Drayton's fame rests is the Polyolbion, a minute chorographical description of England, county by county, stream by stream, and hill by hill, in 30 books of Alexandrine metres. Part of the poem is illustrated with notes by the antiquary Selden. He has left also “ England's Heroical Epistles," and some smaller pieces. Drayton is a pleasing and sparkling writer ; but with no remarkable elevation of fancy or depth of feeling. His great poem tires by the monotony of the measure, and the sameness of its fantastic personi. fications. It is full, however, of fine descriptive passages. Though esteemed to have been of service to James in the intrigues which preceded his accession to the English throne, he was neglected by the king. The facility of Drayton's muse was singular; most of his principal pieces were published before he was thirty years of age.
RT OF FAIRY.
FROM "NYMPHIDIA; THE COURT OF FAIRY."
PIGWIGGEN'S EQUIPMENT. 1
Yet could it not be pierced ;
Whose sharpness nought reversed.
And puts him on a coat of mail,
No point should be prevailing ;
It would be long in healing.
His helmet was a beetle's head,
Yet it did well become him;
And turn his weapon from him.
Himself he on an earwig set,
Ere he himself could settle :
He was so full of mettle.
FROM " THE POLYOLBION."
1 For a combat with King Oberon.
? A kind of grass ; a rush. Point. frorn Lat pilum, a javelin. • English poetry frequently personifies rivers as feminine. Shakespeare has Severn masculine, 1. Henry IV. Act 1. Sc. 3. ; bu Tyber feminine, Julius Cæsar, Act I. Sc. I.
And as her god-like self, so glorious was her throne,
THE STAG HUNT.
Now when the hart doth hear The often bellowing hounds to vent his secret leir, 3 He rousing rusheth out, and through the brakes doth drive, As though up by the roots the bushes he would rive. And, through the cumbrous thicks,4 as fearfully he makes, He with his branchéd head the tender saplings shakes, That sprinkling their moist pearl, do seem for him to weep; When after goes the cry, with yellings loud and deep, That all the forest rings, and every neighbouring place ; And there is not a hound but falleth to the chase. Rechatings with his horn, which then the hunter cheers, Whilst still the lusty stag his high-palmed head up-bears, His body showing state, with unbent knees upright, Expressing, (from all beasts) his courage in his flight. But when, the approaching foes still following, be perceives That he his speed must trust, his usual walk he leaves, And o'er the champain flies : which when the assembly find, Each follows, as his horse were footed with the wind. But being then imbost, the noble stately deer When he hath gotten ground (the kennel cast arrear) Doth beat the brooks and ponds for sweet refreshing soil : That serving not, then proves if he his scent can foil, And makes amongst the herds, and flocks of shag wool'd sheep, Them frighting from the guard of those who had their keep.
| Azure; said to be derived from the name of a blue cloth manufactured at Watchet in Worcestershire. 2 Neptune's queen.
4 Thickets. 3 One of the measures in winding the horn.
" A deer is imbost when it throws forth bosses or bubbles of foam, or when it swells at the knees with hard hunting. As a dismayed deer in chase embost.' Spencer, F. Queen III. 12."-Richardson.
But, when as all his shifts his safety still denies,
The hunter, coming in to help his wearied hounds,
(1564-1616.) The neglect of Shakespeare by his countrymen, immediately after his own age, has left to the anxious curiosity of modern admiration slight materials for the construction of his biography. Official documents, tradition, and scattered notices in various writers have been carefully gleaned to procure a few meagre facts from which we may trace the great poet's living career. He was born at Stratford-on-Avon, in Warwickshire, in April 1564. His father, a wool-comber in that village, though not opulent, seems to have been in good circumstances, since, notwithstanding the burden of a numerous family, he possessed property both in land and houses, and held the highest official dignities of the place. It is alleged that a short course in the Stratford grammar school was all the regular education Shakespeare ever received. The necessity of assistance in his business forced his father to withdraw him early from school. The traditionary anecdotes of his youth indicate anything but the earnest student anxiously expanding the rudimentary acquirements received from a village pedagogue ; and yet the question of his learning has employed the elaborate, and often sarcastic and angry erudition of hostile critics. But Shakespeare's “ wit" was made of Atalanta's heels :" an hour of a mind like his could extract the honey, the acquisition of which employed the days and nights of less vigorous intellects. If we cannot believe, in all its circumstances, the traditionary tale of the deer-stealing in Charlecote Park, the angry vengeance of Sir Thomas Lucy, and the forced flight of the poet from his native place; we can yet discern in the compelled hurry of
1 "The hart weepeth at his dying: his tears are held to be precious in medicine." - Com. pare Shakesp. “As you like it," Act II. Sc. I.