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The learned doctor Farmer has restored to the public 'notice a compilation of this class, unmentioned by any typographic annalist, and entitled, “ The ORATOR, handling a hundred seue“ rall Discourses in form of Declamations : fome of the Ar

guments being drawne from Titus Liuius, and other an“ cient writers, the rest of the author's own Invention. Part “ of which are of matters happened in our age. Written in “ French by Alexander Silvayn, and Englished by L. P. [or “ Lazarus Pilot.] London, printed by Adam Ilip, 1596'.” The subject of the ninety-fifth DECLAMATION is, Of a few who would for his debt haue a pound of the flesh of a Christian?. We have here the incident of the Bond, in Shakespeare's MERCHANT of Venice, which yet may be traced to a much higher source a. This Alexander Sylvain compiled in French Epitomes de cent Histoires Tragiques partie extraictes des Artes des Romains et autres, a work licenced to Iip to be translated into English in 1596 6. Perhaps the following passage in Burton's MelanCHOLY, may throw light on these DeCLAMATIONS. " In the “ Low Countries, before these warres, they had many


says, that being at sea four years before with M. Cavendish, he found this history in the Spanish tongue in the library of the Jesuits i f Sanctum ; and that he translated it in the ship, in pafling through the Straits of Magellan. Many fonnets and metrical inscriptions are intermixed. One of the fonnets is said to be in imitation of Dolce the Italian. SIGNAT. C. Again, SIGNAT. K 3. About the walls of the chamber of prince Protomachus, “in curious imagerie

were the Seuen Sages of Greece, set “ forth with their feuerall vertues elo. “ quently discouered in Arabicke verses." The arch of the bed is of ebonie sett with pretious stones, and depictured with the Itages of man's life from infancy to oldage. SIGNAT. B 3. The chamber of Margarite, in the fame castle, is much more fumptuous. Over the portico were carved in the whiteft marble, Diana blushing at the sudden intrusion of Acteon, and her “ naked Nymphes, who with one hand “ couering their owne secret pleasures with “ blushes, with the other cast a beautifull “ vaile ouer their mitresse daintie nakedness. The two pillars of the doore were “ beautified with the two Cupides of Ana

creon, which well-shaped Modestie often “ seemed to whip, left they should growe

ouer-wanton." Within, * All the chaste « Ladies of the world inchased out of fil“ uer, looking through faire mirrours of “ chrisolites, carbuncles, fapphires, and greene emeraults, fixed their eyes on the “ picture of Eternitie, &c." In the tapertry, was the story of Orpheus, &c. Sign.


A sonnet of “ that excellent poet of “ Italie Lodouico Pascale,” is introduced, SIGNAT. L. Another, “ in imitation of

Martelli, hauing the right nature of an “ Italian melancholie," SIGNAT. L. He mentions “ the sweet conceites of Philip “ du Portes, whose poeticall writings be“ing alreadie for the most part Englished, “ and ordinarilie in euerie man's hands," are not here translated. SIGNAT. L 2.

I think I have also seen in Italian “ The

Araunge and wonderfull aduentures of “ Simonides a gentilman Spaniarde. Con“ teyning uerie pleafaunte discourse. Ga« thered as well for the recreation of our “noble yong gentilmen as our honourable

courtly ladies. By Barnabe Riche gentil. “man. London, for Robert Walley, 1581." Bi. Lett. 4to. Much poetry is intermixed. A recommendatory poem in the octave stanza is prefixed by Lodge, who says he corrected the work, and has now laid his muse aside. There is another in the same stanza by R. W. But it would be endless to pursue publications of this fort. I only add, that Barnabe Riche abovementioned wrote in prose The HONESTIE OF THIS Age, &c. Lond. 1615. 4to. A curious picture of the tinies. Also “ the PATHWAY

TO MILITARY Practice, with a ka. "lendar for the ymbattallinge of men, "newly written by Barnabie Riche," entered to R. Walley, 22 March, 1586. REGISTR. STATION. B. fol. 216. b. Riche in the title-page to his Irish HUBBUB (Lond. 1617. 4to.) calls that book his twenty-fixth. I have seen most of them.

6 Lazarus y I know not exactly what connection this piece may have with an entry, under the year 1590, to Aggas and Wolfe,“ Cer“ ten tragicall cases conteyninge Lv Hyr“ tories with their seuerall declamations “ both accusative and defensive, written “ in ffrenshe by Alexander Vandenbrygt “ alias Silvan, translated into Englishe by “ R. A.” REGISTR. STATION. B. fol. 263. b. Perhaps R. A. is Robert Allot, the publisher of ENGLAND'S PARNASSUS in 1600. See supr. p. 280. And add, that he has some Latin hexameters prefixed to Christopher Middleton's LEGEND OF DUKE HUMPHREY, Lond. 1600. 410.

solemne “ feastes, playes, challenges, artillery [ archery ) gardens, col

ledges of rimers, rhetoricians, poets, and to this day, such “ places are curiously maintained in Amsterdam. In Italy, they o have solemne Declamations of certaine select yonge gentlemen “ in Florence, like these reciters in old Rome, &c."

In 1582, a suite of tales was published by George Whetstone, a sonnet-writer of some rank, and one of the most passionate among us to bewaile the perplexities of love", under the title of HEPTAMERON, and containing some novels from Cinthio'. Shakespeare, in MEASURE FOR MEASURE, has fallen into great improprieties by founding his plot on a history in the Hepta

Jul. 15. REGISTR. C. fol. 12. a. c P. ii. §. 2. p. 229. edit. 1624.

• Meres, ubi fupr. fol. 284. W. Webbe, a cotemporary, calls him “ A man fingu

larly well skilled in this faculty of poetry.”

e 'This title adopted from the queen of Navarre was popular. There is entered to Jones, Jan. 11, 1581, “ An HEPTAME“ RON of civill discourses vnto the Chrift

mas exercises of sundry well courted “gentlemen and gentlewomen.''Registr. STATION. B. föl 185. b. I suppose a book of tales. There is also, August 8, 1586, to E. White, “ MORANDO, the “ TRITAMERON Of Love,” Ibid. fol.

z See fol. 401.

* See supr. Diss. Gest. Roman. Ixxxiii.

209. b.

3 P 2


MERON, imperfectly copied or translated from Cinthio's original'. Many faults in the conduct of incidents for which Shakespeare's judgement is arraigned, often flowed from the casual book of the day, whose mistakes he implicitly followed without looking for a better model, and from a too hasty acquiescence in the present accommodation. But without a book of this sort, Shakespeare would often have been at a loss for a subject. Yet at the fame time, we look with wonder at the structures which he forms, and even without labour or deliberation, of the basest materials .

Ames recites a large collection of novels in two volumes, dedicated to fir George Howard master of the armory,

and printed for Nicholas England in 1567. I have never seen them, but presume they are translations from Boccace, Cinthio, and Bandello'. In 1589, was printed the Chaos OF HISTORYES K. And in 1563,

“ A boke called Certaine noble storyes contaynynge rare and worthy matter'.” These pieces are perhaps to be catalogued in the same class.


r See Whetstone's RIGHT EXCELLENT

FAMOUS HISTORYE OF PROMOS AND CASSANDRA, Divided into Commi. cal DISCOURSES, printed in 1578. Entered to R. Jones, 31 Jul. 1578. REGISTR. STATION. B. fol. 150. b.

11. Lond. 1600. Printed by V, S. 4to.
Go, bid the poets ftuddie better matter,
Than Mars and Venus in a tragedie.

: In the Prologue to a comedy called Cupid's WHIRLIGIG, As it hath bene fundrie times acted by the Children of his Maiefries Reuels, written by E. S. and printed in quarto by T. Creede in 1616, perhaps before, an oblique stroke seems intended at some of Shakespeare's plots.

h Pag. 328.
i Cont. 856 leaves. 8vo.

k Registr. Station. B. fol. 246. a. Jul. 28, to Abell Jeffes.

| To Berys. RegistR. A. fol. 89. b. I have here thrown together many pieces of the same fort, before 1585, from the registers of the Stationers. Mar. 10,1594, to T. Creede, “ Mother RedD-CAPPE “ her last will and teftament, conteynyng « sundrye conceipted and pleasant tales “ furnished with muche varyetie to move

delighte.” REGISTR. B. fol. 130. a.Nov. 3, 1576, to H. Bynneman, “ MERY “ Tales, wittye questions, and quicke an“ swers." Ibid fol. 135. b. — April 2, 1577, to R. Jones,

" A FLORISHE UPON Fancie, as gallant a glose of suche a

triflinge texte as euer was written, compiled by N. B. gent. To which are

« annexed

Our author's pen loues not to swimme in

He dips no inke from oute blacke Acheron :
Nor crosses seas to get a forraine plot. -
Nor doth he touch the falls of mighty kings,
No ancient hystorie, no shepherd's love,
No statesman's life, &c.

He blames some other dramatic writers for
their plots of heathen gods. So another,
but who surely had forgot Shakespeare, in

In the year 1590, fir James Harrington, who will occur again in his place as an original writer, exhibited an English version of Ariosto's ORLANDO Furioso " : which, although executed without fpirit or accuracy, unanimated and incorrect, enriched our poetry by a communication of new stores of fiction and imagination, both of the romantic and comic species, of Gothic machinery and familiar manners.

Fairfax is commonly supposed to be the first translator of Taffo. But in 1593, was licenced “ A booke called Godfrey of

Bolloign an heroycall poem of S. Torquato Tasso, Englished “ by R. E. esquire"." In consequence of this version, appeared the next year “ An enterlude entituled Godfrey of Bol

"e annexed manie pretie pamphlets for “ pleafaunte heades to passe away idell time " withall compiled by the fame author.” Ibid, fol. 138. b. And by the same author, perhaps Nicholas Breton, Jun. 1, 1577, to Watkins, afterwards T. Dawson, “ The woorkes of a yong witte trufte up, “ with a fardell of pretie fantasies pro“ fitable to yong poets, compiled by N. B. “ gent.” Ibid. fol. 139. b.-Jun. 5, 1577, to R. Jones, “ A HANDEFULL OF HIDDEN “ SECRETS, conteyninge therein certayne " Sonnettes and other pleasaunte devises,

pickt out of the closet of sundrie wor“thie writers, and collected by R. Wil. “ liams.” [N. B. This is otherwise en. titled, The GALLERY OF GALLANT VENTIONS.] Ibid. fol. 140. a. -Jun. 23, 1584, to T. Hacket, two books, " A DIALL for daintie darlings,” and “ the

BANQUET of daintie conceipts.” Ibid. fol. 200. b.-" The parlour of pleafaunte “delyghtes," to Yarret James, Jan. 13, 1580. Ibid. fol. 177. b. " A ballad of " the traiterous and vnbrideled crueltye of

one Lucio a knyght executed ouer Eri“phile daughter to Hortensia Castilion of “Genoway in Italy,” to H. Carre, Sept. 3, 1580. Ibid. fol. 171. b.-" The de.

ceipts in loue discoursed in a Comedie “ of ij Italyan gentlemen and translated “ into Englische,” to S. Waterson, Nov.


10, 1584. Ibid. fol. 202. a. Most of these
pieces I have seen : and although perhaps
they do not all exa&ly coincide with the
class of books pointed out in the text,
they illustrate the general subject of this
m At least in that


Feb. 26, was entered to Richard Field, under the hands of the archbishop of Canterbury and the bishop of London, “ A booke entituled John Harrington's Orlando Furioso, &c.” RegistR. STATION. B. fol. 271. b. But there is entered to Cuthbert Burbye, to be printed by Danter, May 28, 1594, “ The “ Historie of Orlando Furioso.” Ibid. fol. 306. b. See also fol. 303. a. And Ariorto's story of Rogero and Rhodomont, translated from the French of Philip de Portes, by G. M. (Gervis Markham) is entered to N. Linge, Sept. 15, 1598. Ibid. C. fol. 41. b.

* To Christopher Hunt, Jan. 25. Re. GISTR. Station. B. fol. 304. b. The fame version of Tasto is again entered Nov. 22, 1599. REGISTR. C. fol. 54. a. Among Rawlinson's manuscripts are two fair copies in large folio of a translation of Tasso in octave stanzas, by fir G. T. An inserted note says this is George Turberville, the poet of queen Elisabeth's reign, and that he was knighted by the queen while ain bassador.



loigne with the Conquest of Jerusalem °." Hall in his Satires published in 1597, enumerates among the favorite stories of his time, such as, Saint George, Brutus, king Arthur, and Charlemagne,

What were his knights did SALEM's SIEGE maintayne, To which he immediately adds Ariosto’s Orlando P.

By means of the same vehicle, translation from Italian books, a precise and systematical knowledge of the antient heathen theology seems to have been more effectually circulated among the people in the reign of queen


Among others, in 1599 was published, “ The FOUNTAINE OF ANTIENT Fic“ Tion, wherein is depictured the images and statues of the “ gods of the antients with their proper and particular expo“ fitions. Done into Englishe by Richard Linche gentleman'.

Tempe è figliuola di verità. London, imprinted by Valentine

Sims, 1599?” This book, or one of the same fort, is censured in a puritanical pamphlet, written the same year, by one H. G. a painfull minister of God's word in Kent, as the Spaune of Italian Gallimawfry, as tending to corrupt the pure and unidolatrous worship of the one God, and as one of the deadly snares of popish deception'. In the history of the puritans, their

apprehenfions that the reformed faith was yet in danger from paganism, are not sufficiently noted. And it should be remembered, that a PANTHEON had before appeared ; rather indeed with a view of exposing the heathen superstitions, and of thewing their conformity to the papistic, than of illustrating the religious fable of antiquity. But the scope and design of the writer will ap

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• To John Danter, Jun. 19. Ibid. fol.

309. b.

P B. vi. Sat. i.

9 In quarto. From some other book of
the kind, says John Marston in his Sa-
TYRES, Lond. for E. Matts, 1593. 12mo.
Sat. ii.
Reach me some poets Index that will thew
IMAGINES DEORUM. Booke of Epithites,

Natalis Comes, thou, I know, recites,
And mak'st anatomie of poefie.
With this might have been bound up “A
" treaforie and storehouse of similis," for
T. Creede, 1600.

In 1599 was published by G. Potter, A commendacion of true poetry and a “ discommendacion of all baudy, pybald, “ and paganizde (paganised) poets, &c." See REGISTR. STATION, C. fol. 55. b.


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