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These Platonic doctrines are closed with a beautiful application of Virtue personified, and introduced in her irresistible charms of visible beauty. For those who deviate into vain and vicious pursuits,
None other payne pray I for them to be,
Even as she is, so goodly fayre and bright!
That wboso joyes such kind of life to hold,
In prison joyes, fettred with chaines of gold.“ Wyat may justly be deemed the first polished English satirist. I am of opinion, that he mistook his talents when, in compliance with the mode, he became a sonnetteer; and, if we may judge from a few instances, that he was likely to have treated
any other subject with more success than that of love. His abilities were seduced and misapplied in fabricating fine speeches to an obdurate mistress. In the following little ode, or rather epigram, on a very different occasion, there is great simplicity and propriety, together with a strain of poetic allusion. It is on his return from Spain into England.
Tagus farewell, that westward with thy stremes
And to the town that Brutus sought by dreames”,
Like bended mooner that leanes her lustys side;
Among Wyat's poems is an unfinished translation, in Alexandrine verse, of the Song of Iopas in the first book of Virgil's Eneidu. Wyats and Surrey's versions from Virgil are the first regular translations in English of an antient classic poet: and they are symptoms of the restoration of the study of the Roman writers, and of the revival of elegant literature. A version of David's Psalms by Wyat is highly extolled by lord Surrey and Leland. But Wyat's version of the PENITENTIAL Psalms seems to be a separate work from his translation of the whole Psaltery, and probably that which is praised by Surrey, in an ode above quoted, and entitled, Praise of certain Psalmes of David, translated by Sir T. Wyat the elder. They were printed with this title, in 1549. “Certayne Psalmes chosen out of the Psalter of David commonly called the vij penytentiall Psalmes, drawen into Englyshe meter by sir Thomas Wyat knyght, whereunto is added a prologe of the auctore before every Psalme very pleasant and profettable to the godly reader. Imprinted at London in Paules Churchyarde at the sygne of thee starre by Thomas Raynald and John Harryngton, cum previlegio ad imprimendum solum, MDXLIX.” Leland seems to speak of the larger version.
Transtulit in nostram Davidis carmina linguam,
reddidit arte pares. Non morietur OPUS tersum, SPECTABILE, sacrum.* 9 a tradition in Geoffrey of Mon- &c. &c. they were inscribed by John mouth.
Harrington (the father probably of Sir " The old city from the river appeared John H.), who determined to print in the shape of a crescent.
them, “that the noble fame of so worthy strong, flourishing, populous, &c. a knight as was the author hereof, Sir tFol. 44.
Thomas Wyat, should not perish, but Fol. 16. (See supr. p. 304.) [These remayne.” Before each psalm is inPsalms were reprinted by Bishop Percy serted an explanatory “ Prologe of the with his ill-fated impression of Lord Auctor," in eight-line stanzas: the transSurrey's poems, which perished in the lation is throughout in alternate verse. warehouse of Mr. John Nicholls, 1808. - PARK.] To William Marquis of Northampton,
* NÆx. ut supr.
u Fol. 49.
But this version, with that of Surrey mentioned above, is now losty: and the pious Thomas Sternhold and John Hopkins are the only immortal translators of David's Psalms.
A similarity, or rather sameness of studies, as it is a proof, so perhaps it was the chief cement, of that inviolable friendship which is said to have subsisted between Wyat and Surrey. The principal subject of their poetry was the same: and they both treated the passion of love in the spirit of the Italian poets, and as professed disciples of Petrarch. They were alike devoted to the melioration of their native tongue, and an attainment of the elegancies of composition. They were both engaged in translating Virgil *, and in rendering select portions of Scripture into English metre.
y See Hollinsh. Chron. iii. p. 978. with Dr. Nott, that Warton intended col. 2. (Dr. Nott is of opinion that by this expression a larger portion of Wyatt translated no more of the Psalter Virgil than the Song of Iopas mentioned than the Penitential Psalms.-Edit.] above.-Edit.]
* (There seems no reason for inferring
To the poems of Surrey and Wyat are annexed, as I have before hinted, in Tottell's editions, those of “Uncertain Authors a.” This latter collection forms the first printed poetical miscellany in the English language; although very early manuscript miscellanies of that kind are not uncommon. Many of these pieces are much in the manner of Surrey and Wyat, which was the fashion of the times. They are all anonymous; but probably, sir Francis Bryan, George Boleyn earl of Rochford, and lord Vaulx, all professed rhymers and sonnet-writers, were large contributors *
Drayton, in his elegy Cepistle] To his dearly loved friend Henry REYNOLDS OF POETS AND POESIE, seems to have blended all the several collections of which Tottell's volume consists. After Chaucer he
On many dainty passages of with.
and Harrington likewise have dormant • (CHURCHYARD must also be added claims to the honourable distinction of to this list of contributors on the follow- coadjutorship. Vid. infra, p. 332. and ing averment: “Many things in the Nugæ Antiquæ, vol. i. p. 95. and ü. booke of Songs and Sonets printed then 256. ed. 1775.-Park.] (in queen Mary's time) were of my mak Works, vol. iv. p. 1255. edit. ing. See notices of his works prefixed Lond. 1759. 8vo. to his “Challenge" 1593. Heywood
Sir Francis Bryan was the friend of Wyat, as we have seen; and served as a commander under Thomas earl of Surrey in an expedition into Brittany, by whom he was knighted for his bravery. Hence he probably became connected with lord Surrey the poet. But Bryan was one of the brilliant ornaments of the court of king Henry the Eighth, which at least affected to be polite: and from his popular accomplishments as a wit and a poet, he was made a gentleman of the privy-chamber to that monarch, who loved to be entertained by his domestics d. Yet he enjoyed much more important appointments in that reign, and in the first year of Edward the Sixth; and died chief justiciary of Ireland, at Waterford, in the year 1548€. On the principle of an unbiassed attachment to the king, he wrote epistles on Henry's divorce, never published; and translated into English from the French, Antonio de Guevara's Spanish Dissertation on the life of a courtier, printed at London in the year last mentioned'. He was nephew to John Bourchier, lord Berners, the translator of Froissart; who, at his desire, translated at Calais from French into English, the GOLDEN BOKE, or Life of Marcus Aurelius, about 15838. Which are Bryan's pieces I cannot ascertain.
George Boleyn, viscount Rochford, was son of sir Thomas Boleyn, afterwards earl of Wiltshire and Ormond; and at Oxford discovered an early propensity to polite letters and poetry. He was appointed to several dignities and offices by king Henry the Eighth, and subscribed the famous declaration sent to Pope Clement the Seventh. He was brother to queen Anne Boleyn, with whom he was suspected of a criminal familiarity. The chief accusation against him seems to have been, that he was seen to whisper with the queen one morning while she was in bed. As he had been raised by the exaltation, he was involved
Dugd. Bar. ii. 273. a.
mol. Oxon. [Printed again in 1575, • Rymer, Foed. xiv. 380.
small 8vo.- Park.] e Hollinsh, Chron, i. 61. And Ibid. 8 See the Colophon. It was printed Hooker's Contin. tom. ii. P. ii. pag. by Thomas Berthelett, in 1536, quarto. 110. See also Fox, MARTYR. p. 991. Often afterwards. Lord Berners was de
Cod. Impress. A. Wood, Mus. Ash- puty general of Calais, and its Marches.