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A PINDARICODE, &c.) In that MS. volume, which I have supposed to be compiled by order of the earl of Newcastle, there is a letter to him from Jonson, enclosing a few poems on himself. “My noblest lord, (he says,) and my patron by excellence, I have here obeyed your commands, and sent you a packet of mine own praises, which I should not have done, if I had any stock of modesty in store —“but obedience is better than sacrifice;’ and you command it.”
Two of the inclosures are from (lord Falkland) sir Lucius Cary. The first he calls “An Anniversary Epistle on sir Henry Morison, with an Apostrophe to my father Jonson.”
... “Noble Father, * * * * “I must imitate master Gamaliel Du: both in troubling - you with ill verses, and the intention of professing my service to ‘. . . you by them. It is an Anniversary to sir Henry Morison, in which, because there is something concerns some way an antagonist of your's,” I have applied it to you. Though he may be angry at it, I am yet certain that tale temperamentum seguar ut de iis queri non poterit side se bene sentiat. What is ill in them (which I fear is all) belongs only to myself: if there be any thing tolerable, it is somewhat you dropt negligently one day at the Dog, and I took up.
“‘Tu fantum accipies ego te legisse putabo
“Sir, I am,
It appears that this was the third “Anniversary” which sir Lucius had written; and as Jonson's letter is fortunately dated, (Feb. 4th, 1631,) we are authorised to place the death of young Morison in 1629, which must also be the date of the Ode.
Nothing can exceed the affectionate warmth with which sir Lucius speaks of his friend, who appears, indeed, to have deserved all his kindness.
“He had an infant's innocence and truth,
1 This antagonist is Quarles. It does not appear why he was hostile to Jonson. Sir Henry says little more than that the subdued and careless tone of his divine poetry is suitable to the expression of sorrow.
Among other topics of praise, his friendship and respect for our author are noticed:
“And next his admiration fix'd on thee,
The second inclosure of sir Lucius is a poetical “Epistle to his noble father Ben.” In this he gives the commencement of their acquaintance, in an elegant application to himself of the fable of the fox, who first feared the lion, then grew familiar with him, &c.
“I thought you proud, for I did surely know,
and he adds a wish, which was probably accompanied with some token of his kindness:
“I wish your wealth were equal to them both;
At what period the acquaintance of this “noble pair” begun I know not. They seem to have travelled together. Not long after the return of sir Lucius Cary to England, their intimacy was still more closely cemented by his growing attachment to Letitia, the sister of sir Henry Morison, and the daughter of sir Richard MoriSon of Tooley Park, in Leicestershire, whom, to the displeasure of his father (for the lady had no fortune) he subsequently married. The amiable youth did not live to witness this event, which took place in 1630, when Lucius was in his twentieth year. “She was a lady” (lord Clarendon says) “ of a most extraordinary wit (sense) and judgment, and of the most signal virtue, and exemplary life, that the age produced, and who brought him many hopeful children in which he took great delight.”
The life and death of this most distinguished nobleman are familiar to every reader of English history. Lord Clarendon, who knew him well, having lived, as he says, “on terms of the most unreserved friendship with him from the age of twenty to the hour of his death,” has given in the History of the Rebellion, a delineation of his character replete with grace, elegance, strength, and beauty, warm with truth, and glowing with genuine admiration; which yet does not go beyond what was said and thought of him by his
. . Of ingenuity, i. e. of ingenuousness, candour, frankness : ingine (wit) is used in the large sense of genius and talents; the common acceptation of the word in that age.
contemporaries: and it is quite amusing to find Horace Walpole
with the low scribblers whose flattery he purchased with praise,
(for he gave nothing else, except the hope of a legacy, which he never intended to realize”) in splenetic sneers at kings and cour
* On this point Mr. Pinkerton is peculiarly affecting, in the Preface to his Wa/po/iana.
tiers: he called himself a republican, and uttered many grievous complaints of the loss of liberty, &c., and yet went crying out of the world because the French were putting his hopeful maxims of reform into practice.
A Pindaric Ode, &c.] In the edition of 1640, in 12mo, this poem is called A Pindaric Ode; a title left out in all subsequent editions, and which I have now restored. For this ode is a true and regular Pindaric, and the first in our language, that hath a just claim to that title. Jonson was perfectly acquainted with the manner of Pindar, and hath followed it with great exactness in the structure of this poem. The terms of art, denoted by the turn, the aunter-turn, and the stand, are a translation of the strophē, the antistrophe, and epode, which divided the Greek odes. The English reader may possibly be desirous to have them more particularly explained; what I have to say therefore on this point, I shall take the liberty to borrow from the learned Mr. West's preface to his elegant translation of the Odes of Pindar. It is chiefly built upon a passage in the Scholia on Hephæstion. “The ancients, says the scholiast, in their odes framed two larger stanzas, and one less : the first of the large stanzas they call strophè, singing it on their festivals at the altars of their gods, and dancing at the same time. The second they called antistrophè, in which they inverted the dance: the lesser stanza was named the epode, which they sung standing still. From this passage, (continues Mr. West,) it appears evident, that these odes were accompanied with dancing, and that they danced one way while the strophē was singing, and then danced back again while the antistrophē was sung: which shews why these two parts consisted of the same length and measure: then when the dancers were returned to the place whence they set Out, before they renewed the dance, they stood still while the pode was sung. Such was the structure of the Greek ode, in which the strophe and antistrophè, i. e. the first and second stanzas, contained always the same number, and the same kind of verses: the epode was of a different length and measure: and if the ode ran out into any length, it was always divided into triplets of stanzas ; the two first being constantly of the same length and measure; and all the opodes in like manner corresponding exactly with each other: from all which the regularity of this kind of compositions is sufficiently evident.” Thus far this ingenious gentleman. There is one remark, however, to be made upon the scholiast of Hephaestion; who supposeth the epode to be always the lesser stanza, or to contain fewer verses than either the strophē or antistrophè; but this is not true in fact: the epodes of Pindar are various; some of them fall