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these, especially the former, the MIRRou R of MAG 1st RATEs. is cited at large, and has a conspicuous share *. At the latter end of the reign of queen Elisabeth, as I am informed from some curious manuscript authorities, a thin quarto in the black letter was published, with this title, “ The MIRRour of “ MIRRow Rs, or all the tragedys of the Mirrovr for Magis-“trates abbreuiated in breefe histories in prose. Very necessary “ for those that haue not the Cronicle. London, imprinted for “ James Roberts in Barbican, 1598'.” This was an attempt
* Allot's is much the most complete performance of the two. The method is by far more judicious, the extracts more coW. and made with a degree of taste.
ith the extracts he respectively cites the names of the poets, which are as follows. Thomas Achelly. Thomas BAs TARD. George CHAP MAN. Thomas ChurchYARD. Henry Constable. Samuel DANiel. John DAvias. Michael DRAY ton. Thomas Dekka R. Edmund FA 1Rf Ax. Charles F 1 r z - J E f f R. E. Y. Abraham Fraunce. George Gasco 16 NE. Edward Gilpin. Sir John HARRING Ton. John Higgins. Thomas Hudson. JA Mes King of Scots. [i. e. James the First. J Benjamin Jonson. Thomas Kyd. Thomos Lodge. [M. M. i. e. M I R Rou R of Magistrates.] Christopher MARLowe. Jarvis Markh AM. John MAR ston. Christopher Middleton. Thomas Nashe. [Vaulx] Earl of Oxford. George Peele. Matthew Ray Don. Mafter Sackvile. William Shakespeare. Sir Philip SIPNEY. Edmund SP ENs ER. Thomas Sto RER. [H. Howard] Earl of Sur Rex. John Sylvester. George Turb ERville. William WARNER. Thomas WAT so N. John, and William, Weeve R. Sir Thomas Wyat. I suspect that Wood, by mistake, has attributed this collection by Allot, to Charles Fitz-jeffrey abovementioned, a poet before and after 16oo, and author of the Aff an Ire. But I will quote Wood's words. “Fitz-jeffrey hath also made, as “tis said, A Collection of choice Flowers and “Descriptions, as well out of his, as the “works of several others the most renown
“ed poets of our nation, collečted about “the beginning of the reign of King “James I. But this tho I have been years “seeking after, yet I cannot get a fight of “it.” Arh. Oxon. p. 606. But the most comprehensive and exact CoM Mon-Pi Ace of the works of our most eminent poets throughout the reign of queen Elisabeth, and afterwards, was published about forty years ago, by Mr. Thomas Hayward of Hungerford in Berkshire, viz. “The BR1“t is H Muse, A Collection of Thoughts, ** MoRAL, N.At U R Al, and SU BL 1 ME, of “our ENG l is H. Poets, who flourished in “ the sixteenth and seventeenth Centuries. “With several curious Topicks, and beau“tiful Passages, never before extracted, “from Shakespeare, Jonson, Beaumont, “Fletcher, and above a Hundred more. “The whole digested alphabetically, &c. “In three volumes. London, Printed for “F. Cogan, &c. 1738.” 12mo, The PREF Ace, of twenty pages, was written by Mr. William Oldys, with the supervisal and corrections of his friend doctor Campbell. This aneodote I learn from a manuscript insertion by Oldys in my copy of Allot's ENGLAND's PARNAs sus, abovementioned, which once belonged to Oldys.
" From manuscripts of Mr. Coxeter, of Trinity college Oxford, lately in the hands of Mr. Wise Radclivian Librarian at Oxford, containing extracts from the copyrights of our old printers, and registers of the Stationers, with several other curious notices of that kind. Ames had many of Coxeter's papers. He died in London about 1745.
to familiarise and illustrate this favorite series of historic soliloquies: or a plan to present its subjećts, which were now become universally popular in rhyme, in the dress of prose. It is reasonable to suppose, that the publication of the MIRRou R of MAGISTRATEs enriched the stores, and extended the limits, of our drama. These lives are so many tragical speeches in chara&ter. We have seen, that they suggested scenes to Shakespeare. Some critics imagine, that Historical Plays owed their origin to this colle&tion. At least it is certain, that the writers of this MIRRour were the first who made a poetical use of the English chronicles recently compiled by Fabyan, Hall, and Hollinshed, which opened a new field of subjećts and events ; and, I may add, produced a great revolution in the state of popular knowledge. For before those elaborate and voluminous compilations appeared, the History of England, which had been shut up in the Latin narratives of the monkish annalists, was unfamiliar and almost unknown to the general reader.
N tracing the gradual accessions of the MIRRouR of MAGISTRATEs, an incidental departure from the general line of our chronologic series has been incurred. But such an anticipation was unavoidable, in order to exhibit a full and uninterrupted view of that poem, which originated in the reign of Mary, and was not finally completed till the beginning of the seventeenth century. I now therefore return to the reign of queen Mary. To this reign I assign Richard Edwards, a native of Somersetshire about the year 1523. He is said by Wood to have been a scholar of Corpus Christi college in Oxford : but in his early years, he was employed in some department about the court. This circumstance appears from one of his poems in the PAR ADise of DAINTIE Devises, a miscellany which contains many of his pieces.
* Edit, 1585. 4*. CARM, 7. there
there is a small set of manuscript sonnets signed with his initials, addressed to some of the beauties of the courts of queen Mary, and of queen Elisabeth". Hence we may conjećture, that he did not long remain at the university. About this time he was probably a member of Lincoln’s-inn. In the year 1561, he was constituted a gentleman of the royal chapel by queen Elisabeth, and master of the finging boys there. He had received his musical education, while at Oxford, under George Etheridge . When queen Elisabeth visited Oxford in 1566, she was attended by Edwards, who was on this occasion employed to compose a play called PAL AMon AND AR cite, which was aéted before her majesty in Christ-church hall". I believe it was never printed. Another of his plays is DAMon AND PYTHIAs,
which was ačted at court. It is a mistake, that the first edition of this play is the same that is among Mr. Garrick's collection,
printed by Richard Johnes, and dated 1571 °. The first edition was printed by William How in Fleet-street, in 1570, with this title, “The tragical comedie of DAM on AND PITHIAs, “ newly imprinted as the same was playde before the queenes “ maiestie by the children of her graces chapple. Made by “ Mayfter Edward then being master of the children".” There is some degree of low humour in the dialogues between Grimme the collier and the two lacquies, which I presume was highly pleafing to the queen. He probably wrote many other dramatic pieces now lost. Puttenham having mentioned lord Buckhurst and Master Edward Ferrys, or Ferrers, as most eminent in tragedy, gives the prize to Edwards for Comedy and Interlude". The word Interlude is here of wide extent. For Edwards, besides that he was a writer of regular dramas, appears to have been a contriver of masques, and a composer of poetry for pageants. In a word, he united all those arts and accomplishments which minister to popular pleasantry: he was the first fiddle, the most fashionable sonnetteer, the readiest rhymer, and - the most facetious mimic, of the court. In consequence of his love and his knowledge of the histrionic art, he taught the choristers over which he presided to act plays ; and they were formed into a company of players, like those of saint Paul's cathedral, by the queen's licence, under the superintendency of Edwards ". The most poetical of Edwards's ditties in the PARADI’s E of DAINTIE Devises is a description of May'. The rest are moral sentences in stanzas. His SouL-KNELL, supposed to
* Quarto. Bl. lett. subscribed M. S. ibid. CARM. 29. This
* Quarto. Bl, lett. The third edition is among Mr. Garrick's Plays. 4to. Bl. L. dated 1582. * Arte of English Poet RY. fol. 51. * See supr. vol. ii. 393. * CARM. 6. edit. 1585. It seems to have been a favorite, and is complimented in another piece, A reply to M. Edwardes May,
miscellany, of which more will be said hereafter, is said in the title to “be de“vised and written for the most parte by “ M. Edwardes sometime of her maiesties “Chappell.” Edwards however had been dead twelve years when the first edition appeared, viz, in 1578.