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Yet Aubrey could persuade himself that Hoskins "polished" Ben Jonson, and that Jonson himself confessed it! I believe Gifford's terse summary of Aubrey's character will stand for honest truth:-"In short, Aubrey thought little, believed much, and confused every thing." (Life of Jonson, p. xx. note.)

I may mention here, that among Donne's Poems there is a somewhat similar Dialogue between himself and Wotton, p. 186, ed. 1669.]






BOBLE, lovely, vertuous Creature,
Purposely so fram'd by Nature
To enthral your servants wits:
Time must now unite our hearts,
Not for any my deserts,

But because (me thinks) it fits.

Ho. Dearest treasure of my thought,
And yet wert thou to be bought

With my life, thou wert not dear:
[10] Wo. Secret comfort of my mind,
Doubt no longer to be kind,
But be so, and so appear.

Ho. Give me love for love again;

Let our loves be clear and plain,—

Heaven is fairest, when 'tis clearest :
Wo. Lest in clouds, and in differring,
We resemble Seamen erring,

Farthest off, when we are nearest.


Ho. Thus, with numbers interchanged,
Wotton's Muse and mine have ranged;
Verse and Journey both are spent:
Wo. And if Hoskins chance to say,
That we well have spent the day,
I, for my part, am content.

H. W.

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["LET not our readers mistake this excellent little poem for an effusion of the tender passion. [They would be very odd readers if they did.] Sir Henry Wotton was never accused of being a platonic lover, and at the time of its composition was a grave diplomatist of the age of fifty-two. It proceeded from a feeling of chivalrous loyalty; and when connected, as it always should be, with the anecdote of the jewel, forms altogether a trait in his character, which the mind may contemplate with unmixed delight.” (Freeman's Kentish Poets, i. 215.) The " anecdote of the jewel" is well-known to all Izaak Walton's readers. Many state-papers and similar documents, connected with Wotton's employments on the affairs of the Queen of Bohemia, are preserved in Rel. Wotton. as well as some of his letters to the Queen,—one of which begins as follows: "Most resplendent Queen, even in the Darkness of Fortune. That was wont to be my Style unto Your Majesty, which you see I have not forgotten. For though I have a great while forborn to trouble You with any of my poor Lines; yet the Memory of Your sweet and Royal Vertues is the last thing that will die in me." (p. 336.)

In another, which is commenced in the same way, occurs this passage:-"The last and inwardest Consolation that I can represent unto your Majesty, is your self, your own Soul, your own Virtues, your own Christian constancy and magnanimity: Whereby your Majesty hath exalted the glory of your Sex, conquered your Affections, and trampled upon your adversities. To conclude, you have shewed the World, that though you were born within the chance, yet without the power of fortune." (p. 556. He often repeats these expressions. Cf. pp. 129, 222, 450.) I believe the date assigned by Freeman to the Poem (1620) is nearly correct; for the Elector Palatine was not chosen King of Bohemia till September, 1619: and if it had been written long after that time, the lines would have contained some allusion to the Queen's misfortunes. It was set to music and printed

as early as 1624.*

The Variations are now given from three copies of this Poem; viz. A=one in Archbishop Sancroft's Collection, MS. Tann. 465, fol. 43. B one in MS. Malone 19, p. 23. Title, "To the Spanish Lady." (What this title means, I do not pretend to determine. The tune known as "the Spanish Lady" would not suit the metre of this piece. See Percy's Reliques, ii. 246, ed. 1839, and Chappell's Nat. Eng. Mel. No. 24, (bis) and Notes, pp. 44, 188.) C=one in Percy's Reliques, ii. 335, where it is "printed from the Reliquiæ

* Namely, in Est's Sixt Set of Bookes, &c. with several variations, which are given in Mr. Dyce's edit, of Wotton's Poems. The copy is also mentioned by Haslewood, Pref. to Anc. Crit. Essays, vol. ii. p. xi. Mr. Dyce remarks, that "it is found also, much altered for the worse, and with a wretched Second Part, in Songs and Fancies, &c. Aberdeen, 1682." I do not know whether the additional verses which I have extracted from the MSS. form any portion of that "Second Part," but they are very inferior to the rest. In Park's copy of Rel. Wotton. is inserted "The Disparity, from a hint of Sir Henry Wotton," by Aaron Hill; but the writer has taken rather more than "a hint," and has completely spoiled the piece. Cleveland evidently had it in view in the commencement of his "General Eclipse;"-Poems, p. 72, ed. 1677.

Wottoniana, 1651, with some corrections from an old MS. copy." Percy's readings have been previously given by Mr. Dyce.]




OU meaner Beauties of the Night,
That poorly satisfie our Eyes,

More by your number, than your light,
You Common people of the Skies;
What are you when the [Moon] shall rise?

You curious Chanters of the Wood,
That warble forth Dame Natures lays,
Thinking your [Passions] understood
By your weak accents; what's your praise,
When Philomel her voice shall raise?

You Violets that first appear,
By your pure purple mantles known,
Like the proud Virgins of the year,
As if the Spring were all your own;
What are you when the Rose is blown?

So, when

my Mistriss shall be seen
In Form and Beauty of her mind,
By Vertue first, then Choice, a Queen,
Tell me if she were not design'd

Th' Eclipse and Glory of her kind?
H. W.

[VARIATIONS.—1. 'Ye'—B.—2. ' Which’—B.‘mens eyes'— A. (afterwards corrected.) 4. Like common'— A B. — 5. moon' is the reading of A

6 What' altered in A to 'Where'-.

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