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ANTHONY MUNDAY (1553–1633) | was said by Meres in his Palladis Tamia (1598) to be the "best plotter" among the comic poets; which might easily have been true at that early date. Fourteen plays were written either partly or wholly by him. The first of importance was Valentine and Orson, published in 1598, but acted much earlier. He was assisted by Drayton, Hathway, and Robert Wilson, it is said, in Sir John Oldcastle, which was published in 1600, and ascribed by the printer to Shakespeare (see ante, Ch. VII. Note C). In 1601 Munday published Robert Earl of Huntingdon's Downfall, and, assisted by Chettle, Robert Earl of Huntingdon's Death. His writings extended over the period 1580-1621. Perhaps his chief claim to consideration rests on his painstaking translations of chivalrous romances, c.g. Palmerin d'Oliva (1588) and Amadis de Gaul (1595). He died August 10, 1633, and is styled on his monument in St. Stephen's, Coleman Street, "citizen and draper of London."

THOMAS NABBES was one of the members of the Tribe of Ben, and wrote a few fluent but insignificant masques and comedies Covent Garden (1633), Tottenham Court (1633), Microcosmus (1637), and The Bride (1638). The first two names remind us of Shirley's Hyde Park, and give us the key to the spirit of the pieces. He wrote also a continuation (1638) of Knolles' History of the Turks. Little is known of him save that he was secretary to some nobleman near Worcester.

HENRY PORTER is known, from Henslowe's Diary, to have worked in partnership with Chettle and Jonson at a play called Hot Anger soon Cold (1598), and to have written the charming comedy of The Two Angry Women of Abington (1599).

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1638) and The Jealous Lovers (published 1632); and in all his work he drew freely from Plautus, Terence, and Aristophanes. He died of smallpox at the early age of twentynine.

SAMUEL ROWLEY, the probable author of The Noble Spanish Soldier (1631), deserves mention, but chiefly in order to distinguish him from WILLIAM ROWLEY (1585?-1642?), the very powerful and unequal dramatist whose hand is to be seen in Middleton's Changeling and A Fair Quarrel. Rowley's tragedy, All's Lost by Lust, points to a very distinct tragic power, and gives considerable reason for the favourable attitude which recent criticism, in revising its opinion of Middleton, has taken towards him as well. However, he did much strong, coarse work in farcical comedy, and the very unhumorous comic scenes in Shakespeare's Pericles, that work of several authors, are supposed by some critics to be his. Samuel Rowley certainly wrote When you see me, you know me, or the History of Henry VIII (published 1605).

SIR JOHN SUCKLING (1609-1642), of whom more in the next chapter, wrote three rather dull tragedies called Aglaura, Brennoralt, and the unfinished Sad One, and a comedy called The Goblins (1638). Suckling's writing is frigid, and its tone is post-Restoration rather than Elizabethan. His plays form part of his posthumous Fragmenta Aurea (1646); but The Sad One did not appear in print till 1658.

ROBERT TAYLOR, an early dramatist, wrote a play called The Hog hath lost his Pearl, which is familiar to most readers from the admirable specimen cited by Charles Lamb.

JOHN WILSON (1627 ? - 1696) brought out, in post-Restoration times, two noteworthy comedies, The Cheats (1664) and The Projec tors (1665), and two other plays, in avowed imitation of Ben Jonson. His work, late as it is in date, is very excellent of its kind, and one is tempted to regret that the Elizabethan spirit-of which a gleam is seen in Nathanjel Lee-did not

revive more successfully, instead of succumbing to French dramatic fashions.

In addition to these writers should be mentioned the anonymous author of Nero, published in 1624 and 1633, one of the best of the classical tragedies of the era, after Shakespeare's, and possessing more liveliness and

spirit than Ben Jonson's Roman plays, with a certain degree, at the same time, of rhetorical stateliness. Nero has been edited once or twice of recent years (by Mr. A. H. Bullen, and in the " Mermaid" series by Mr. H. P. Horne), but the author's name has never been satisfactorily conjectured.




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§ 1. THE seventeenth century is one of the most momentous epochs in English history. Á large portion of it is occupied by an immense political and religious fermentation, out of which came many of those institutions to which Poetry of the the country owes its present grandeur and happiness. century. In its literary aspect this agitated epoch, although not marked by that marvellous outburst of creative power which dazzled us in the reigns of Elizabeth and James I, has nevertheless left obvious traces on the turn of thought and expression of the English people; and in poetry alone, excluding the solitary example of Milton as a poet of the first order, we may say that this period produced a class of admirable writers in whom intellect and fancy were more powerful than sentiment or passion. In these poets, whom Johnson called the metaphysical class, ingenuity predominates over feeling, and, while Milton owed much to many of them, they had nevertheless far more to do in generating the so-called correct and artificial manner of the age of William III, Anne, and George I. We propose to pass in rapid review, and generally according to chronological order, the most distinguished names among these poets from 1640 to 1700.


§ 2. GEORGE WITHER and FRANCIS QUARLES are a pair of poets, typical, in some ways, of the best and worst work of this Wither was born at Bentworth, near Alresford, and was educated at Magdalen College, Oxford. GEORGE His family were not very well off, and, after leaving (1588-1667). college, he had to take up farming. Subsequently,


he entered at Lincoln's Inn; and, during the Civil War, changed sides from Royalist to Roundhead. At the Restora

tion, he had to undergo severe persecution and a long imprisonment, which seem to have been no more than he deserved. His most important works are the collection of semi-pastoral poems called The Shepherd's Hunting (1615), and the fanciful narrative of The Mistress of Philarete (1622); but, in addition to these, he wrote a great deal of religious poetry-in 1623, the fine Hymns and Songs of the Church, and, in 1641, a collection called Hallelujah-while almost his earliest work was a satire, Abuses Stript and Whipt (1613). His rural descriptions show an exquisite sense of beauty, and his moral tone is sweet and pure without being brought obtrusively into notice. His vice, in common with most of his contemporaries, was a Defects of passion for ingenious turns of phrase and unexpected conceits, which bear the same relation to really beautiful thoughts that plays upon words bear to wit. He was also often singularly deficient in taste: his lyric utterance fails, and he deforms graceful images by placing them side by side with what is merely quaint and sometimes even ignoble. Many of his detached lyrics are extremely beautiful, and his verse is generally flowing and melodious; but, in reading his best passages, we always feel a nervous apprehension that we shall come, at any moment, upon something that will jar upon our sympathy. Among other works, he wrote a series of Emblems, in which his puritanical enthusiasm revels in a system of moral and theological analogies as far-fetched as poetical.

Wither's poetry.


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Quarles, a Royalist as ardent as Wither was a devoted Republican, exhibits many points of intellectual resemblance to Wither, but was far his inferior in poetical sentiment. He was born at Romford and educated at Christ's College, Cambridge, and, having filled the offices of cup-bearer to Elizabeth of Bohemia, the Queen of Hearts," of secretary to Archbishop Ussher, and of Chronologer to the City of London, died in 1644, leaving his fortune much impaired by his fidelity to the King's cause. He wrote an immense amount; but his best-known work, which has enjoyed a considerable degree of popularity, is the collection of Divine Emblems (1635). In these verses he inculcated moral and religious principles in a style quaint and conceited beyond endurance. He illustrated them also with engravings which show the tendency to pictorial allegory run mad. For example, the text, "Who will deliver me from the body of this death?" is accompanied by a Superfluous cut representing a diminutive human figure, typical quaintness of of the human soul, peeping through the ribs of a verse. skeleton as from behind the bars of a dungeon. This taste for extravagant, yet prosaic, allegory, was borrowed from the laborious ingenuity of the Dutch and Flemish moralists and divines. Quarles, indeed, borrowed the last three books of the Emblems, with their illustrations, from the Pia

Desideria Emblematis (1624) of Hermann Hugo, a Jesuit divine. However, in spite of his quaintness, Quarles is not destitute of the feeling of a true poet, and many of his pieces breathe an intense spirit of religious fervour. Towards the end of his life he published a book of pious aphorisms called Enchiridion (1640), which is so full of beauty and religious aspiration that it deserves a place higher than any of his poems. There is a shade of unfairness in mentioning Wither and this distinctly inferior contemporary in the same breath ; but, speaking roughly, Quarles may be said to have been, in spirit, the most Roundhead of the Cavaliers, and Wither the most Cavalier of the Roundheads.

§ 3. A far more reasonable comparison, without doubt, exists between GEORGE HERBERT, the most devout of Anglican writers, and RICHARD CRASHAW, one of the most illustrious Englishmen who have devoted their talents to the service of the Roman faith. Herbert was born at Montgomery Castle; and, at Trinity College, Cambridge, showed himself both courtier and scholar, and filled the! GEORGE' HERBERT office of public orator in the University. His name (1593-1633). is chiefly connected, however, with his life as parish priest of Bemerton, near Salisbury, where he showed himself a living example of the virtue and piety he recommended in his treatise, A Priest to the Temple. He was attached to those great ideals of Churchmanship which excited so strongly the devotion of his age; and he occupies, side by side with Lancelot Andrewes and Thomas Ken, the highest place in the English calendar of post-Reformation saints. His principal, and, indeed, with the exception of A Priest to the Temple, now his sole remembered work, was The Temple Sacred Poems and Private Ejaculations, published in 1633, very shortly after his death. These poems are mainly short lyrics, full of pious aspiration and admirable pictures of Temple" nature. They are not devoid of the strange and perverted ingenuity which disfigures Quarles' and Wither's work; but the wonderful piety which reigns throughout them serves as an antidote to the poison of perpetual conceits. In his most successful pieces he has almost attained the perfection of devotional poetry: they glow with the ardent fervour of devotion, and are yet free from that sentimentalism into which religious poets are too often apt to fall. He died before the troubles of the Civil War; and his prose treatise, A Priest to the Temple, was not brought out until 1652.



Crashaw's short life was passed in a perpetual glow of religious enthusiasm. His father was William Crashaw, preacher at the Inner Temple and prebendary in Ripon and York Minsters, a scholar and poet, but a theologian RICHARD of the Puritan type, whose Protestant prejudice pro- (16137-1649). bably was unbending enough to direct his son in quite the opposite line. The young Crashaw went to Charter


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