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vestures white, his socks yellow, a yellow veil of silk on his left arm, his head crowned with roses and marjoram, in his right hand a torch of pine-tree." 17. 126. taper. See Hymn Nat. 202.
127. Pomp, &c. These were various forms of entertainment highly popular in the early part of the seventeenth century. They were all the rage at the court. Inigo Jones, Ben Jonson, and others, each in his way, assisted in the “getting-up” of them. The Queen of James I. delighted to take a part in them. See especially Jonson's Entertainments. See also Shakspere, Tempest, IV. i. ; Henry VIII. I. iv. ; Romeo and Juliet, I. iv. ; Winter's Tale, IV. iv. “The King,” says Armado, in Love's Labour Lost, V. i. 117, “would have me present the princess, sweet chuck, with some delightful ostentation, or show, or pageant, or antique, or firework." See also Milton's own Comus and Arcades.
Revelry. Revels was both a special and a generic term. In the general sense, “a master of the revels was appointed at the court in 1546.” Todd quotes Minshen's definition of revels: “ sports of dauncing, masking, comedies, tragedies, and such like, used in the king's house, the houses of court or of other great personages.”
128. See Warton's Hist. Eng. Poet, ii.
132. Jonson, educated at Westminster School, and for a time at Cambridge, and much given to classical studies subsequently, was held in high esteem for his learning. He had attempted to introduce into the English drama the observance of the so-called unities, so great was his affection for the classical drama. His learning is not unfrequently so lavishly displayed as to render him liable to the charge of pedantry. At the time L'Allegro was written, he had outlived his popularity as a play-writer. His New Inn, brought out in 1630, was received with derision. But he was still the leading figure in the world of letters. He died in 1637. sock. Lat. soccus.
Contrast “ buskin'd stage,” Il Pens. 102. “ Or when thy socks were on” occurs, as Warton notes, in Ben Jonson's recommendatory verses prefixed to the Shakspere Folio of 1623.
133. Gray writes in the same strain. See Progress of Poesy, 1. 84. The one recognised form of learning in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was the classical. Shakspere, having comparatively little of that, was regarded as altogether unlearned. He was “ Fancy's child." The romantic drama, of which he was the supreme master, differed much from that drama which the scholarship of Milton's day admired: it seemed lawless and rude. Hence “his native wood-notes wilde" are spoken of. At the same time, that Milton admired him profoundly appears from his Epitaph on the admirable dramatic poet William Shakspeare. See also what is said of Shakspere in the Theatrum Poetarum, by Milton's nephew, who was probably assisted by his uncle, 1675. See Pope's Imitat. of Horace's Ep. II. i.:
“Not one but nods and talks of Jonson's art,
Of Shakespear's nature, and of Cowley's wit.”
Lydian nires. Of the three prevailing Greek “modes,” or musical styles (the Lydian, the Phrygian, the Dorian), the Lydian was soft and voluptuous. See Dryden's Alexander's Feast, l. 79. Spenser's Faerie Queene, III. i. 40:
“And all the while sweet Musicke did divide
Her looser notes with Lydian harmony."
137. Comp. Horace's “Verba loquor socianda chordis” (Od. IV. ix. 4).
= bend, turn: here a musical passage. 140. (What part of the sentence is long ?]
141. [How would you explain the apparent contradiction between "heed,” between “giddy” and “cunning ?”]
17. 143. In every soul-indeed in all creation-there is harmony, but for the most part it lies imprisoned and bound, so that it cannot be heard. The sweetness of the music described in the text is to be such that it shall set free this prisoner, and make its voice audible. See Hooker's Eccles. Pol. v. 38: “Touching musical harmony, whether by instrument or voice, it being but of high and low in sounds a due proportionable disposition, such notwithstanding is the force thereof, and so pleasing effects it hath in that very part of man which is most divine, that some have been hereby induced to think that the soul itself by nature is, or hath in it, harmony." By "some ” Hooker means Plato. See Phæd. cap. xxxviii. Merchant of Venice, V. i. 61:
“ There's not the smallest orb which thou behold'st
But in his motion like an angel sings,
Doth grossly close it, we cannot hear it.”
heave his head. Samson Agonistes, 197 ; Paradise Lost, i. 211 ; Comus, 885149. In our older English writers, as in our modern colloquial language, the perfect infinitive is used to express a result or a purpose which has not been attained. See Hamlet, V. i. 268 :
“ I thought thy bride-bed to have deck’d, sweet maid.” Paradise Lost, i. 40:
“ He trusted to have equall'd the most High,
If he opposed." Ivanhoe : It was his purpose to have rendered the experiment as complete as possible.”
150. Eurydice. See Il Pens. The story is exquisitely told by Virgil in Georg. iv. It is prettily retold by some old late medieval poet in a strange romantic form.
151. Comp. close of Marlowe's Passionate Shepherd to his Love, in the Golden Treasury.
1. BOWLE quotes from Sylvester, the translator of Du Bartas:
"Hence, hence, false pleasures, momentary joyes,
Mocke us no more with your illuding toyes. 2. That is, the offspring of unmixed folly. So in Hesiod's Theogony the brood born of Night have no father : “She bare loathed Fate and black Destiny, and Death; and she bare Sleep, and ever and anon the tribe of Dreams."
ούτινι κοιμηθείσα θεά τέκε Νυξ έρεβεννή.” (Theog. 211-13.) She bare others also ; and so too, it would seem, one of her daughters, Eris, bare children, having neither husband nor paramour.
3. bested. This word is usually a participle, as in Isaiah viii. 21: “They shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry.” So in Chaucer, Gower, Spenser, Shakspere, &c. See Bible Word-Book. In the sense of it the simple verb also is commonly used, as in Shakspere, Two Gentlemen of Verona, II. i. 119; Measure for Measure, I. iv. 18, &c. ; or to stand instead, as in i Henry VI. IV. vi. 31 :
“ The help of one stands me in little stead."
Except in certain phrases, stead, both as a substantive and a verb, has fallen out of use. It survives in compos. in steadfast, homestead, steady, instead, Hampstead, bedstead. 17. 4. fixed. See Faerie Queene, IV. vii. 16. 6. fond = foolish, as usually in Old English, and still in the North.
“ Thou fond mad woman.” (Richard 11. V. ii. 95.) So Coriol. IV. i. 26. “Fondling " is used both as a term of endearment, and for a fool. In Wickcliffe and in Chaucer occurs the form fonned, which is the participle of fonnen, to be foolish (found in Chaucer, the Townley Mysteries, &c. Scotch fon). Then fond = foolishly affectionate, “loving not wisely.” In our present usage the word has acquired a better meaning, the idea of folly originally so predominant in it being diminished. The first meaning of dote is to be silly. “Most loving mere folly,” sings Amiens, in As You Like It, II. vii. 181. As to the passive participle being used (i.e. fonned, not fonnend, or fonning), comp. “doted ignorance,” in Faerie Queene, I. viii. 34. On the other hand, from “mad," = to be mad, we have“ madding,” as in Paradise Lost, vi. 210; Gray's Elegy, &c.
shapes. See L'Allegro, 4. 18. 7. Warton refers to Sylvester's Cave of Sleep in Du Bartas.
thick. Comp. Knolles apud Johnson : “They charged the defendants with their small shot and Turkey arrows as thick as hail.” (What other meanings has thick ?]
9. likest. Like, though a monosyllable, does not in our present English form its degrees of comparison by inflection.
10. Morpheus. See Class. Dict.
Morpheus train = what Ovid calls “populus natorum mille suorum” (Metam.
pensioners. See Midsummer Night's Dream, II. i. 10.
12. Bowle thought that Milton took the idea of his Melancholy from Albert Dürer's design of Melancholia.
15. Comp. Exod. xxxiv. 29-35.
18. Prince Memnons sister: i.e. some beautiful Ethiopian princess. Another son of Tithonus and Eos, viz. Emathion, is mentioned, but, it would seem, no daughter. Memnon was iamcus for his beauty.
Cassiepea, Cassiopea, or Cassiope, as the name is variously written. The usual story is that it was her daughter Andromeda's beauty that she declared to surpass that of the Nereides, for which presumption her country was visited with a deluge and a sea monster, and these curses withdrawn only on the condition that Andromeda should be given up to the monster.
See Ovid. Met. iv. 670: “The unpitying Ammon had bidden that innocent Andromeda should there pay the penalty for her mother's tongue.” The story, as told by Milton, is given by Apollodorus. For so boasting of herself “she was represented, when placed among the stars, as turning backwards.” Manilius, in his Astronomics (i. 352), speaks of her punishment, not of her crime :
In penas signata suas. starrd, not star-crowned, but made or transformed into stars. Aratus describes this constellation. See Cicero's translation, 187 et seq.
22. higher far. (What part of speech is higher here? Comp. “high-born.")
of yore. Comp. “of late," " of old," &c. 25. Solitary Saturn. According to the old story he made himself so, as a father, by devouring his offspring.
Hesiod, in his Theogony, 454, mentions Histia as one of his children by Reia. 29. Ida. See Class. Dict. There were several mountains of this name. (Which one is meant here?)
30. yet. In our present Englishwhen yet, in the sense it has here, (what is that? and
what other senses has yet ?] is placed before the verb of its sentence, we qualify it by prefixing as. We could say either “while there was not yet any fear of Jove,” or “while as yet there was no fear of Jove." This as serves to distinguish the sense of yet. (In the other case the position of the word distinguishes its sense.) For the older English usage, comp. with this passage, Taming of the Shrew, Induct. i. 96: “For yet his honour never heard a play,” &c. So A. Phillips to Charlotte Pulteney (apud Golden Treas.):
Simple maiden, void of art,
18. 30. i.e. during the Golden Age. Comp. Paradise Lost, x. 584. For a picture of Saturn after the fear of Jove had been realized, see Keats' Hyperion.
32. stedfast. See notes on bested, Il Pens. 3; shamefact, H. Nat. III.
demure. Comp. Spenser's “With countenance demure and modest grace." In form and derivation, comp. debonair. See note, L'All. 24. The root of the latter part of the word appears in “moral,” &c. It is quite distinct from that of “demur.” See Trench's Select Gloss.
33. all may be an adjective here : comp. Horace's “totus in illis” (1 Sat. ix. 2): or it may be an adverb (see note, p. 66), qualifying the adjectival phrase in a robe of. darkest grain
not, as Webster supposes, a mourning black, or a dull neutral tint, but the violet shade of purple.” See especially Marsh's Lect. on the Eng. Lang. ist Ser. Grain originally = a seed, or kernel, then a small seed-like object, then any minute thing, then an insect of the genus coccus, “the dried body or rather ovarium of which furnishes a variety of red dyes,” then one of the dyes so procured. Hence grain is used by Milton and other English poets for Tyrian purple. See Paradise Lost, xi. 240-4:
“ Over his lucid arms
1b. v. 285, Com. 750 ; Chaucer's “scarlet en grayn ; " Shakspere's “purple in grain" (Midsummer Night's Dream, I. ii. 95). As "the colour obtained from kermes, or grain, was peculiarly durable, or, as it is technically called, a fast or fixed dye,” in grain was used for deep-dyed, “fast,” fixed. 35. stole,
The stola was the characteristic robe of the Roman lady. Exactly, it was a “tunic,” short-sleeved, flounced, made so long that it reached the ground, and also fell in a broad fold over the girdle. (Under it was worn the tunica interior, over it, out of doors, the palla.) But Spenser, as Mr. Keightley remarks, uses stole for hood or veil (see Faerie Queene, I. i. 4; Colin Clout's come Home again, 495 ; and in that sense, probably, Milton uses it here. He has already mentioned a robe “flowing with majestic train. The ecclesiastical stole was, and is, something very different-“a long narrow scarf, with fringed ends.” (See Morte D'Arthur, Globe Edition, p. 373: “And then the good man and Sir Launcelot went into the chapel, and the good man took a stole about his neck,” &c.) The robe which the priests of Isis wore was the Roman stola. Comp. Hymn Nat. 220.
Cipres lawn = crape. Crape may not be derived from “ Cipres ” ( = Cyprus), as some say (but rather from Fr. crêpe, Lat. crispus), but the two words seem to have denoted the same thing. See Twelfth Night, III. i. 132. “Both black and white were made, as at present, but the black was more common, and was used for mourning, as it is still” (Nares). See Jonson's Every Man in his Humour, I. iii, &c. See Webster's Malcontent, III, i.:
Why, dost think I cannot mourn, unless I wear my hat in cipres, like an alderman's heir ?” Shirley's Love Tricks :
Gong. Goddess of Cyprus
hatbands of her.” Lawn is here used generally, not in its technical sense. It is often distinguished from cyprus, as in Autolycus' song, Winter's Tale, IV. iv. 220:
“ Lawn as white as driven snow,
Cyprus black as e'er was crow.' “ Cobweb lawn, or the very finest lawn,” says Nares, “is often mentioned with Cyprus, and, what is singular, Cotgrave has made crespe signify both.” See Jonson's Epig. 73. Comp. at a later time Pope's Mor. Ess. i. 135-6:
“ 'Tis from high life high characters are drawn,
A saint in crape is twice a saint in lawn;"
lawn being used for bishops, crape for the other clergy.
18. 36. [What is meant by decent?] Comp. Horace's gratiæ decentes” (Od. I. iv. 6), “decentes malas” (Od. III. xxvii. 53).
39. Comp. Cicero's Tusc. Disp. V. xxiii. 65: “Quis est omnium qui modo cum Musis, id est cum humanitate et cum doctrina, habeat aliquod commercium, qui se non hunc mathematicum (Archimedem] malit quam illum tyrannum (Dionysium].” Ovid's Tristia, V. x. 35 :
“ Exercent illi socia commercia linguæ;
Per gestum res est significanda mihi.”
41. [What part of speech is still here?)
“ With leaden eye that loves the ground." Spenser's Epithal. 234.
19. 50. See Bacon's Essay on Gardens: “God Almighty first planted a garden ; and indeed it is the purest of human pleasures ; it is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man.” In Marvell's Thoughts in a Garden (given in the Golden Treasury), one seems to see Retired Leisure recreating in its garden. Comp. Com. 375-80.
his. See note, Hymn Nat. 106.
52. yon. Here an adverb. The A.-S. form is gcond. Shakspere uses the form yond in Tempest, I. ii. 409, Fol. 1623 :
what thou see'st yond.” The usual form, both adverb and adjective, is now"yonder.” In Shakspere and Milton yon as an adjective is about as common as yonder. Spenser has “that yond same,” in Faerie Queene, VI. xii. 18. For the dropping off of the d, comp. “fon,” a form for “fond.”
The vision is described at greater fulness in Paradise Lost, vi. 750-9. For the original, see Ezek. x.
54. Spenser's Contemplation is an old man. See Faerie Queene, I. x. 46.
59. Cynthia. See Class. Dict. Spenser's Faerie Queene, VII. vii. 50.