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Sweet Philomel, the bird
That hath the heavenly throat,
Doth now, alas! not once afford
Recording of a note.

The flowers have had a frost,
Each herb hath lost her savour,
And Phillida the fair hath lost
The comfort of her favour.

Now all these careful sights
So kill me in conceit,

That how to hope upon delights,
Is but a mere deceit.

And, therefore, my sweet Muse, Thou know'st what help is best, Do now thy heavenly cunning use, To set my heart at rest.



On a hill there grows a flower,
Fair befal the dainty sweet;
By that flower there is a bower,
Where the heavenly Muses meet.

In that bower there is a chair,
Fringed all about with gold,
Where doth sit the fairest fair
That ever eye did yet behold.

It is Phillis fair and bright,
She that is the shepherd's joy,
She that Venus did despite,
And did blind her little boy.

This is she, the wise, the rich,
That the world desires to see;
This is ipsa quæ, the which
There is none but only she.

Who would not this face admire ?
Who would not this saint adore?
Who would not this sight desire,
Though he thought to see no more?

O fair eyes, yet let me see
One good look, and I am gone;
Look on me, for I am he,

Thy poor silly Coridon.

Thou that art the shepherd's queen,
Look upon thy silly swain;
By thy comfort have been seen
Dead men brought to life again.

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If so I bathe me in the spring,

E'en on the brink I hear him sing;

If so I meditate alone,

He will be partner of my moan;
If so I mourn, he weeps with me,
And where I am there will he be ;
When as I talk of Rosalind,
The God from coyness waxeth kind,
And seems in self-same frame to fly,
Because he loves as well as I.
Sweet Rosalind, for pity rue,

For why, than love I am more true:
He, if he speed, will quickly fly,
But in thy love I live and die.



FIRST shall the heavens want starry light,
The seas be robbed of their waves,
The day want sun, and sun want bright,
The night want shade, the dead men graves,
The April flowers, and leaves, and tree,
Before I false my faith to thee.

First shall the top of highest hill
By humble plains be overpry'd,
And poets scorn the Muses' quill,
And fish forsake the water glide,
And Iris lose her colour'd weed,
Before I false thee at thy need.

First direful Hate shall turn to peace,
And Love relent in deep disdain,
And Death his fatal stroke shall cease,
And Envy pity every pain,

And Pleasure mourn, and Sorrow smile,
Before I talk of any guile.

First Time shall stay his stayless race,
And Winter bless his brows with corn,
And Snow bemoisten July's face,
And Winter spring, and Summer mourn,
Before my pen, by help of Fame,
Cease to recite thy sacred name.



LOVE in my bosom, like a bee,
Doth suck his sweet :

Now with his wings he plays with me,
Now with his feet:

Within mine eyes he makes his nest,
His bed amidst my tender breast;

My kisses are his daily feast,
And yet he robs me of my rest:
Ah, wanton, will ye!

And if I sleep, then pierceth he
With pretty slight;

And makes his pillow of my knee
The live-long night.

Strike I my lute, he tunes the string,
He music plays if I but sing;
He lends me every lovely thing,
Yet cruel he my heart doth sting;
Ah, wanton, will ye!

Else I with roses every day
Will whip ye hence,

And bind ye, when ye long to play,

For your offence;

I'll shut my eyes to keep ye in,

I'll make you fast it for your sin,

I'll count your power not worth a pin, Alas! what hereby shall I win?

If he gain-say me.

What, if I beat the wanton boy
With many a rod?

He will repay me with annoy,
Because a God.

Then sit thou safely on my knee,
And let thy bower my bosom be;
Lurk in mine eyes, I like of thee,
O, Cupid, so thou pity me!
Spare not, but play thee.


[Born, 1586. Died, 1616.-Born, 1576. Died, 1625.]

THOSE names, united by friendship and confederate genius, ought not to be disjoined. Francis Beaumont was the son of Judge Beaumont of the Common Pleas, and was born at Grace-Dieu, in Leicestershire, in 1586. He studied at Oxford, and passed from thence to the Inner Temple; but his application to the law cannot be supposed to have been intense, as his first play, in conjunction with Fletcher, was acted in his twenty

first year, and the short remainder of his life was devoted to the drama. He married Ursula, daughter and co-heiress of Sir Henry Isley of Kent, by whom he had two daughters, one of whom was alive, at a great age, in the year 1700. He died in 1616, and was buried at the entrance of St. Benedict's chapel, near the Earl of Middlesex's monument, in the collegiate church of St. Peter, Westminster. As a lyrical poet, F. Beau

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mont would be entitled to some remembrance independent of his niche in the drama.

John Fletcher was the son of Dr. Rich: Fletcher, bishop of London: he was born probably in the metropolis, in 1576, and was admitted a pensioner of Bennet college about the age of fifteen. His time and progress at the university have not been traced, and only a few anecdotes have been gleaned about the manner of his life and death. Before the marriage of Beaumont, we are told by Aubrey, that Fletcher and he lived together in London, near the Bankside, not far from the theatre, had one *** in the same house between them, the same clothes, cloak, &c. Fletcher died in the great plague of 1625. A friend had invited him to the country, and he unfortunately staid in town to get a suit of clothes for the visit, during which time he caught the fatal infection. He was interred in St. Saviour's, Southwark, where his grave, like that of Beaumont's in Westminster, is without an inscription.

Fletcher survived his dramatic associate ten years so that their share in the drama that passes by their joint names was far from equal in quantity, Fletcher having written between thirty and forty after the death of his companion*. Respecting those which appeared in their common lifetime, the general account is, that Fletcher chiefly supplied the fancy and invention of their pieces, and that Beaumont, though he was the younger, dictated the cooler touches of taste and accuracy. This tradition is supported, or rather exaggerated, in the verses of Cartwright to Fletcher, in which he says,

"Beaumont was fain

To bid thee be more dull; that's write again,
And bate some of thy fire which from thee came
In a clear, bright, full, but too large a flame."

Many verses to the same effect might be quoted, but this tradition, so derogatory to Beaumont's genius, is contradicted by other testimonies of rather an earlier date, and coming from writers who must have known the great dramatists themselves much better than Cartwright. Ben Jonson speaks of Beaumont's originality with the emphasis peculiar to the expression of all his opinions; and Earle, the intimate friend of Beaumont, ascribed to him, while Fletcher was still alive, the exclusive claim to those three distinguished plays, the Maid's Tragedy, Philaster, and King and No King; a statement which Fletcher's friends were 1 likely to have contradicted, if it had been untrue. If Beaumont had the sole or chief merit of those pieces, he could not have been what Cartwright would have us believe, the mere pruner of Fletcher's luxuriancies, an assessor, who made him write again and more dully. Indeed, with reve• Fletcher was assisted by Massinger in one instance, probably in several; and it is likely that after Beaumont's death he had other auxiliaries. [Rowley, Middleton, and Shirley, were his other assistants.]

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rence to their memories, nothing that they have left us has much the appearance of being twice written and whatever their amiable editor, Mr. Seward, may say about the correctness of their plots, the management of their stories would lead us to suspect, that neither of the duumvirate troubled themselves much about correctness. Their charm is vigour and variety, their defects a coarseness and grotesqueness that betray no circumspection. There is so much more hardihood than discretion in the arrangement of their scenes, that if Beaumont's taste and judgment had the disposal of them, he fully proved himself the junior partner. But it is not probable that their departments were so divided.

Still, however, the scanty lights that enable us to guess at what they respectively wrote, seem to warrant that distinction in the cast of their genius which is made in the poet's allusion to

"Fletcher's keen treble, and deep Beaumont's base." Beaumont was the deeper scholar. Fletcher is said to have been more a man of the world. Beaumont's vein was more pathetic and solemn, but he was not without humour; for the mockheroic scenes, that are excellent in some of their plays, are universally ascribed to him. Fletcher's muse, except where she sleeps in pastorals, seems to have been a nymph of boundless unblushing pleasantry. Fletcher's admirers warmly complimented his originality at the expense of Beaumont*, on the strength of his superior gaiety, as if gay thoughts must necessarily be more original than serious ones, or depth of sensibility be allied to shallowness of invention. We are told also that Beaumont's taste leant to the hard and abstract school of Jonson, while his coadjutor followed the wilder graces of Shakspeare. But if Earle can be credited for Beaumont's having written Philaster, we shall discover him in that tragedy to be the very opposite of an abstract painter of character; it has the spirit of individual life. The piece owes much less to art than it loses by negligence. Its forms and passions are those of romance, and its graces, evidently imitated from Shakspeare, want only the fillet and zone of art to consummate their beauty.

On the whole, while it is generally allowed that Fletcher was the gayer, and Beaumont the graver genius of their amusing theatre, it is unnecessary to depreciate either, for they were both original and creative; or to draw invidious comparisons between men who themselves disdained to be rivals.

[At the expense of all genius, for in the panegyrical poems in which Fletcher is so warmly complimented, and to which Mr. Campbell alludes, the writers wrote to say good things that looked like true, and were satisfied when the arrow of adulation was drawn to the head. Commendatory poems at the best reflect very little of real opinion, and when brought into biography are more apt to mislead than inform.]

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THEN, my good girls, be more than women wise,
At least be more than I was: and be sure
You credit anything the light gives light to,
Before a man.
Rather believe the sea
Weeps for the ruin'd merchant when he roars;
Rather the wind courts but the pregnant sails,
When the strong cordage cracks; rather the sun
Comes but to kiss the fruit in wealthy autumn,
When all falls blasted. If you needs must love,
Forced by ill fate, take to your maiden bosoms
Two dead cold aspicks, and of them make lovers;
They cannot flatter nor forswear; one kiss
Makes a long peace for all. But man,—
Oh that beast man! Come, let's be sad, my

That downcast eye of thine, Olympias,
Shows a fine sorrow. Mark, Antiphila;
Just such another was the nymph Oenone,
When Paris brought home Helen. Now a tear,
And then thou art a piece expressing fully
The Carthage queen, when from a cold sea-rock,
Full with her sorrow, she tied fast her eyes
To the fair Trojan ships, and having lost them,
Just as thine eyes do, down stole a tear. Antiphila!

What would this wench do if she were Aspatia ?
Here she would stand till some more pitying god
Turn'd her to marble! "Tis enough, my wench :
Show me the piece of needlework you wrought.
Antiph. Of Ariadne, madam?

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Fie, you have miss'd it here, Antiphila.
You're much mistaken, wench;
These colours are not dull and pale enough
To show a soul so full of misery

As this sad lady's was ;-do it by me;
Do it again by me, the lost Aspatia,
And you shall find all true but the wild island.
Suppose I stand upon the sea-beach now,

Mine arms thus, and mine hair blown with the wind,

Wild as that desert; and let all about me
Tell that I am forsaken. Do my face,
If thou hadst ever feeling of a sorrow,
Thus, thus, Antiphila: strive to make me look
Like sorrow's monument; and the trees about

Let them be dry and leafless; let the rocks
Groan with continual surges, and behind me
Make all a desolation. Look, look, wenches,
A miserable life of this poor picture.

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Sent by the gods, I hope, to this intent,
Not yet seen in the court. Hunting the buck,
I found him sitting by a fountain side,

Of which he borrow'd some to quench his thirst,
And paid the nymph again as much in tears:
A garland lay him by, made by himself
Of many several flowers, bred in the bay,
Stuck in that mystic order that the rareness
Delighted me. But ever when he turn'd
His tender eyes upon 'em, he would weep
As if he meant to make them grow again.
Seeing such pretty helpless innocence
Dwell in his face, I ask'd him all his story.
He told me that his parents gentle died,
Leaving him to the mercy of the fields,
Which gave him roots, and of the crystal springs,
Which did not stop their courses, and the sun,
Which still, he thank'd him, yielded him his light.
Then took he up his garland, and did show
What every flower, as country people hold,
Express'd his grief, and to my thoughts did read
Did signify, and how all order'd; thus
The prettiest lecture of his country art
That could be wish'd, so that methought I could
Have studied it. I gladly entertain❜d him
Who was as glad to follow, and have got
The trustiest, loving'st, and the gentlest boy
That ever master kept. Him will I send
To wait on you, and bear our hidden love.

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Phil. But, boy, it will prefer thee: thou art And bear'st a childish overflowing love [young, To them that clap thy cheeks and speak thee fair yet.

But when thy judgment comes to rule those passions,
Thou wilt remember best those careful friends
That placed thee in the noblest way of life:
She is a princess I prefer thee to.

Bell. In that small time that I have seen the
I never knew a man hasty to part [world,
With a servant he thought trusty. I remember
My father would prefer the boys he kept
To greater men than he; but did it not
Till they were grown too saucy for himself.
Phil. Why, gentle boy, I find no fault at all
In thy behaviour.

Bell. Sir, if I have made

A fault of ignorance, înstruct my youth;

I shall be willing, if not apt to learn.

Age and experience will adorn my mind
With larger knowledge; and if I have done
A wilful fault, think me not past all hope

For once. What master holds so strict a hand

| Over his boy, that he will part with him
Without one warning? Let me be corrected
To break my stubbornness, if it be so,
Rather than turn me off, and I shall mend.
Phil. Thy love doth plead so prettily to stay,
That, trust me, I could weep to part with thee.
Alas, I do not turn thee off: thou know'st
It is my business that doth call me hence :
And when thou art with her thou dwell'st with me:
Think so, and 'tis so. And when time is full
That thou hast well discharged this heavy trust
Laid on so weak a one, I will again
With joy receive thee as I live, I will.
Nay, weep not, gentle boy-'tis more than time
Thou didst attend the princess.

Bell. I am gone.

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Now I perceive she loves me; she does show it In loving thee, my boy: she's made thee brave.

Bell. My lord, she has attired me past my wish, Past my desert, more fit for her attendantThough far unfit for me who do attend. [women Phil. Thou art grown courtly, boy. Oh, let all That love black deeds learn to dissemble here: Here by this paper, she does write to me As if her heart were mines of adamant To all the world besides, but unto me A maiden snow that melted with my looks.

Tell me, my boy, how doth the princess use thee? For I shall guess her love to me by that.

Bell. Scarce like her servant, but as if I were
Something allied to her, or had preserved
Her life three times by my fidelity;

As mothers fond do use their only sons;
As I'd use one that's left unto my trust,
For whom my life should pay if he met harm-
So she does use me.

Phil. Why, this is wond'rous well;

But what kind language does she feed thee with? Bell. Why, she does tell me she will trust my youth

With all her loving secrets, and does call me
Her pretty servant; bids me weep no more
For leaving you-she'll see my services
Regarded; and such words of that soft strain,
That I am nearer weeping when she ends
Than ere she spake.

Phil. This is much better still.
Bell. Are you not ill, my lord?
Phil. Ill-no, Bellario.

Bell. Methinks your words

Fall not from off your tongue so evenly,
Nor is there in your looks that quietness
That I was wont to see.

Phil. Thou art deceived, boy.
And she strokes thy head?

Bell. Yes.

Phil. And does she clap thy cheeks?
Bell. She does, my lord.

Phil. And does she kiss thee, boy?-ha!
Bell. Not so, my lord.

Phil. Come, come, I know she does.
Bell. No, by my life.


Phil. Oh, my heart!

This is a salve worse than the main disease. Tell me thy thoughts, for I will know the least That dwells within thee, or will rip thy heart To know it: I will see thy thoughts as plain As I do now thy face.

Bell. Why, so you do.

She is (for aught I know), by all the gods,
As chaste as ice; but were she foul as hell,
And I did know it thus-the breath of kings,

The points of swords, tortures, nor bulls of brass,
Should draw it from me.

Phil. Then it is no time

To dally with thee :-I will take thy life,
For I do hate thee. I could curse thee now.

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