« הקודםהמשך »
“ of wit and mirth by scholars and gentlemen.” This piece, which probably was not without its temporary ridicule, and which yet mantains a popularity in the nursery, was, I think, first printed by Wynkyn de Worde. Hearne was of opinion, that these idle pranks of the men of Gotham, a town in Lincolnshire, bore a reference to some customary law-tenures belonging to that place or its neighbourhood, now grown obsolete; and that Blount might have enriched his book on ANTIENT TENURES with these ludicrous stories. He is speaking of the political design of REYNARD The Fox, printed by Caxton. " It was an admi“ rable Thing. And the design, being political, and to represent 66- a wise
government, was equally good. So little reason is there “to look upon this as a poor despicable book. Nor is there more 6 reason to esteem THE MERRY TALES OF THE MAD Men “ OF GOTHAM (which was much valued and cried up in Henry " the eighth's time tho now sold at ballad-singers stalls) as alto
gether a romance: a certain skillfull person having told me “ more than once, that he was assured by one of Gotham, that they
formerly held lands there, by such Sports and Customs as are “ touched upon in this book. For which reason, I think par" ticular notice should have been taken of it in Blount's TE“ NURES, as I do not doubt but there would, had that other
wise curious author been apprised of the matter. But 'tis frange to see the changes that have been made in the book of “ REYNARD The Fox, from the original editions 8!”
Borde's chief poetical work is entitled, “ The first Boke of " the INTRODUCTION OF KNOWLEDGE, the which doth teach
a man to speake parte of al maner of languages, and to knowe " the usage and fashion of al maner of countryes : and for to • knowe the most parte of al maner of coynes of money,
* Arh. Oxon. i. 74. There is an edi. oldest I have seen, is London, 1630, tion in duodecimo by Henry Wikes, without date, but about 1568, entitled, Merie & Hearne's Not. Er Spicileg, ad Gul. Tales of the madmen of Gotam, gathered Neubrig. vol. iii. p. 744. See also Betogether by A. B. of phyficke doctour. The NEDICT, ABB, ut supr. p. 54.
whych is currant in every region. Made by Andrew Borde “ of phisyk doctor.” It was printed by the Coplands, and is dedicated to the king's daughter the princess Mary.
Mary. The dedication is dated from Montpelier, in the year 1542. The book, containing thirty-nine chapters, is partly in verse and partly in prose; with wooden cuts prefixed to each chapter. The first is a satire, as it appears, on the fickle nature of an Englishman : the symbolical print prefixed to this chapter, exhibiting a naked man, with a pair of sheers in one hand and a roll of cloth in the other, not determined what sort of a coat he shall order to be made, has more humour, than any of the verses which follow ". Nor is the poetry destitute of humour only; but of every embellishment, both of metrical arrangement and of expression. Borde has all the baldness of allusion, and barbarity of versification, belonging to Skelton, without his strokes of satire and severity. The following lines, part of the Englishman's speech, will not prejudice the reader in his favour.
What do I care, if all the world me faile?
For I will go to learning a whole summers day. In the seventh chapter, be gives a fantastic account of his travels', and owns, that his metre deserves no higher appellation than ryme dogrell. But this delineation of the fickle Englishman is perhaps to be restricted to the circumstances of the author's
Harrison, in his DESCRIPTION OP: ENGLAND, having mentioned this work by Borde, adds, " Suche is our mutabi. litie, that to daie there is none [equal]
to the Spanish guise, to morrow the “ French toies are most fine and delectable, “ yer [ere) long no such apparel as that “ which is aiter the Almaine fashion ; by " and by the Turkish maner otherwise the
“ Morisco gowns, the Barbarian Neves, the 46 mandilion worne to Collie Weston ward, " and the shorte French breeches, &c.” B. ii. ch. 9. p. 172.
i Prefixed to which, is a wooden cut of the author Borde, standing in a sort of pew or stall, under a canopy, habited in an academical gown, a laurel-crown on his head, with a book before him on a desk.
age, without a respect to the national character : and, as Borde was a rigid catholic, there is a probability, notwithstanding in other places he treats of natural dispositions, that a satire is defigned on the laxity of principle, and revolutions of opinion, which prevailed at the reformation, and the easy compliance of many of his changeable countrymen with a new religion for lucrative purposes.
I transcribe the character of the Welshman, chiefly because he speaks of his harp.
I am a Welshman, and do dwel in Wales,
In tellyng of prophyces which be not in ryme '. k That is, toasted cheefe, next mentioned. Wales he says, there are many beautiful · Ch. ii. In the prose description of and strong castles standing yet.
I have before mentioned " A ryght pleasant and merry History «c of the Mylner of ABINGTON ", with his wife and his “ faire, daughter and of two poor scholars of Cambridge,” a meagre epitome of Chaucer's MILLER'S TALE. In a blank leaf of the Bodleian copy, this tale is said by Thomas Newton of Cheshire, an elegant Latin epigrammatist of the reign of queen Elisabeth, to have been written by Borde". He is also supposed to have published a collection of filly stories called Scogin's Jests, fixty in number. Perhaps Shakespeare took his idea from this jeft-book, that Scogan was a mere buffoon, where he says that Falstaffe, as a juvenile exploit,
« broke Sco“ gan's head at the court-gate o.” Nor have we any better authority, than this publication by Borde, that Scogan was a graduate in the university, and a jefter to a king? Hearne, at the end of Benedictus Abbas, has printed Borde’s ITINERARY, as it may be called ; which is little more than a string of names, but is quoted by Norden in his SpecuLUM BRITANNIÆ ?. Borde's circulatory peregrinations, in the quality of a quack-doctor, might have furnished more ample materials for an English topo
“ castels and the countre of Wales, and the “ people of Wales, be much lyke to the “ caftels and the country of the people of “ Castyle and Biscayn.” In de cribing Galcony, he says, that at Bordeaux, “ in
the cathedrall church of Saint Andrews, " is the fairest and the greatest payre of “ orgyns (organs) in al Chrystendome, in “ the which orgins be many instrumentes “and vyces (devices] as gians [giants] so heads and starres, the which doth move “ and wagge with their jawes and eis “ [eyes) as fast as the player playeth.' ch. xxiii.
m A village near Cambridge.
It is hard to say whence Jonson got his account of Scogan, Masque OF THE FORTUNATE Isles, vol. iv. p. 192.
Merefcol. Skogan? What was he?
Jobphiel. O, a fine gentleman, and a
Master of Arts
Merefcol. But wrote he like a gentleman ?
ard flowand verse,
was paid for’t, Regarded and rewarded, which few poets Are now adays. See Tyrwhitt's CHAUCER, vol. v. An AcCOUNT, &c. p. xx. And compare what I have said of Scogan, supr. vol. ii. p. 135. Drayton, in the Preface to his ECLOGUES, says, “ the COLIN CLOUT or SKOGGAN “ under Henry the seventh is pretty." He must mean Skelton. 9 Pag. 13. MIDDLESEX. i. P.
graphy. Beside the BREVIARY OF HEALTH, mentioned above, and which was approved by the university of Oxford, Borde has left the DIETARIE OF HEALTH, reprinted in 1576, the PROMPTUARIE OF Medicine, the DOCTRINE OF URINES, and the PRINCIPLES OF ASTRONOMICAL PROGNOSTICATions': which are proofs of attention to his profession, and shew that he could sometimes be serious S. But Borde's name would not have been now remembered, had he wrote only profound systems in medicine and astronomy. He is known to posterity as a buffoon, not as a philosopher. Yet, I think, some of his astronomical tracts have been epitomised and bound up with Erra Pater's Almanacs.
Of Borde's numerous books, the only one that can afford any degree of entertainment to the modern reader, is the DieTARIE OF HelTHE: where, giving directions as a physician, concerning the choice of houses, diet, and apparel, and not suspecting how little he should instruct, and how much he might amuse, a curious posterity, he has preserved many anecdotes of the private life, customs, and arts, of our ancestors! This work is dedicated to Thomas duke of Norfolk, lord treasurer under Henry the eighth. In the dedication, he speaks of his
The Princyples of Afronamye the whiche diligently perfcrutyd is in a maner a prognofticacyon to the worldes ende. In thirteen chapters. For R. Copland, without date, 12mo. It is among bishop More's collection at Cambridge, with some other of Borde's books.
- See Ames, Hist. Print. p. 152. Pitf. p. 735•
i In his rules for building or planning a House, he supposes a quadrangle. The Gate-house, or Tower, to be exactly opposite to the Portico of the Hall. The Privy Chamber to be annexed to the Chamber of State. A Parlour joining to the Buttery and Pantry at the lower end of the Hall. The Pastry-house and Larder annexed to the Kitchen. Many of the cham. bers to have a view into the Chapel, In
the outer quadrangle to be a stable, but
an aly, when al this is finished, and the “ mansyon replenished with implements." Ch. iv, Sign. C. ib. Dedication dated 1542.