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Robes loosely flowing, hair as free;
The Silent Woman.
Da mi basia mille, deinde centum,' &c.
Kiss me, sweet, the wary lover
* An imitation of the Ode of Catullus :
Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus,' &c.
PRINCIPAL WORKS: The Maid's Tragedy (written conjointly with his friend Beaumont); a fine tragedy characterised by the fashionable licence of thought and diction.— The Faithful Shepherdess, a pastoral drama, besides its own intrinsic beauties, interesting as the model, in some measure, of the Comus of Milton. Beaumont and Fletcher are names almost inseparably linked together in the history of literature. Between them they produced fifty-two dramatic pieces. Of all the dramatists succeeding Shakespeare, they approach nearest to him in richness of fancy and picturesque description. More irregular than Jonson's, their style possesses more of the luxuriance of 'Fancy's child.' Their title to be ranked amongst the few great names who have contributed to form the English language, and in the number of English classics, Dryden has pointed out in asserting that the English language in them arrived to its highest perfection. What words have since been taken in are rather superfluous than ornamental. And he states that in his time, the latter half of the seventeenth century, so great was the popularity of Beaumont and Fletcher, that two of their plays were put upon the stage for one of Shakespeare's or Jonson’s. A partiality which, considering the character of the age and the literary productions chiefly patronised, may perhaps be more justly attributed to the voluptuous painting than to the more solid merits of the authors of The Maid's Tragedy.
CLORINDA AND SATYR.
Have I trotted without rest, To get him fruit: for at a feast He entertains, this coming night, His paramour the Syrinx brightBut behold a fairer sight! By that heavenly form of thine, Brightest fair, thou art divine, Sprung from great immortal race Of the gods, for in thy face Shines more awful majesty Than dull weak mortality Dare with misty eyes behold, And live: therefore on this mould Lowly do I bend my knee In worship of thy deity. Deign it, goddess, from my hand To receive whate'er this land From her fertile womb doth send Of her choice fruits; and but lend Belief to that the Satyr tells. Fairer by the famous wells To this present day ne'er grew, Never better, nor more true. Here be grapes whose lusty blood Is the learned poet's good, Sweeter yet did never crown The head of Bacchus; nuts more brown Than the squirrel whose teeth crack them: Deign, O fairest fair, to take them : For these, black-eyed Dryope Hath oftentimes commanded me With my clasped knee to climb. See how well the lusty time Hath decked their rising cheeks in red,
Such as on your lips is spread.
(Clorinda loq.) And all my fears go with thee. What greatness, or what private hidden power, Is there in me to draw submission From this rude man and beast ?-sure I am mortal, The daughter of a shepherd; he was mortal, And she that bore me mortal : prick my hand And it will bleed; a fever shakes me,
and The self-same wind that makes the young lambs shrink Makes me a-cold : my fear
I am mortal.
To make me follow, and so tole me on
The Faithful Shepherdess.
AMORET AND PERIGOT APPOINT TO MEET AT
THE VIRTUOUS WELL.
to that holy wood is consecrate