« הקודםהמשך »
And ever close the burden of the song,
Still to have such a Charles, but this Charles long. The wish is great; but where the prince is such, What prayers, people, can you think too much!
ON THE RIGHT HONOURABLE AND VIRTUOUS LORD WESTON, LORD HIGH TREASURER OF ENGLAND,
UPON THE DAY HE WAS MADE EARL OF
FEB. 17, MDCXXXII.
TO THE ENVIOUS.
thou seed of envy, and still bring Thy faint and narrow eyes to read the king In his great actions : view whom his large
8 To the Envious.] Weston had many enemies, and his sudden rise was not seen without jealousy. Charles appears to have entertained an extraordinary regard for him, probably on account of his being warmly recommended by the duke of Buckingham, whose favour, however, he is said to have outlived. The treasurer seems to have been an imprudent, improvident man; with considerable talents for business, but fickle and irresolute. He died, lord Clarendon says, without being lamented, “ bitterly mentioned by those who never pretended to love him, and severely censured by those who expected most from him and deserved best of him.”
Dream thou couldst hurt it, but before thou wake To effect it, feel thou'st made thine own heart ache.
TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE HIEROME, LORD WESTON,9
AN ODE GRATULATORY,
FOR HIS RETURN FROM HIS EMBASSY, MDCXXXII.
UCH pleasure as the teeming earth
Doth take in easy nature's birth,
And in a dew of sweetest rain,
The rivers in their shores do run,
The clouds rack clear before the sun, The rudest winds obey the calmest air;
Rare plants from every bank do rise,
And every plant the sense surprise, Because the order of the whole is fair! The
very verdure of her nest, Wherein she sits so richly drest, As all the wealth of season there was spread,
Doth shew the Graces and the Hours?
Have multiplied their arts and powers, In making soft her aromatic bed.
The eldest son of the earl of Portland; a young man of amiable manners, and of talents and worth.
Doth shew the Graces and the Hours.] The Hours are the poetical goddesses, which in common language mean only the seasons ; but our poet has the authority of his Greek and Roman predecessors. WHAL.
I do not quite understand what was meant to be said in this note; but I will venture to add to it, that there is a great deal of grace and beauty in this little compliment.
Such joys, such sweets, doth your return
your friends, fair lord, that burn With love, to hear your modesty relate,
The business of your blooming wit,
With all the fruit shall follow it,
O how will then our court be pleas'd,
Shoot up an olive, fruitful, fair,
To be a shadow to his heir,
Celebrating the NUPTIALS of that noble Gentleman, Mr. HIEROME WESTON, son and heir of the lord WESTON, Lord High Treasurer of England, with the lady FRANCES STEWART, daughter of ESME duke of Lenox, deceased, and sister of the surviving duke of the same name.
EPITHALAMION, &c.] Jerome returned from his embassy in 1632, and became earl of Portland in 1634, so that this poem was probably written in the intermediate year. This marriage was much forwarded by Charles, in compliment (lord Clarendon says) to the treasurer; the bride, who was distantly related to the king, was the youngest daughter of Esme, third duke of Lenox, the friend and patron of Jonson; she is celebrated for her beauty and amiable qualities, and was happy in a husband, altogether worthy of her. In her issue she was less fortunate; her only son, whom lord Clarendon mentions (in his “Life”) as a young man of excellent parts, being killed in the action with the Dutch fleet under Opdam in 1665. “He died fighting very bravely.” The title fell to his uncle, who died without issue, when it became extinct: and thus was verified the pious and prophetic hope of that rancorous puritan sir Antony Weldon, that “God would reward Weston, and that he and his posterity, which, like a Jonah's gourd, sprang up suddenly from a beggarly estate to much honour and great fortunes, would shortly wither!” Court of King Charles, p. 43.