Page images

the worst part of it; I was perswaded to write of such an argument, I will neuer denie that while I livei : 7. Some affirmed that I had taken this laughing libertie to grace soin that haue fauord me, and grate against some that had galled me : guiltie my Lord.

L. Alasse poore Gentleman (say the standers by) he will be condenined certainly for, this that he hath confest already, if he be not saved by his booke: let us heare what he will answere to the rest of the inditement.

8. You did meane some disgrace in the letter afore the booke and in many passages of the Booke itselfe, to Ladies and Gentlewemen. Who I? God damne me if I loue thē not, I feare more to be damned for loving them too well.

9. You did thinke to scoffe at some Gētlemen that haue serued in some honorable seruices though with no great good successe:

As I am a Gentlemā not guilty: neither do I meane any, but such as will needs be called M. Captains hauing neither carried out with them, nor brought home with them, worth, wealth, or wit.

10. You did seeke to discredit the honest meaning and laudable endevours of some zealous and honest men that seeke for reformatio and labor faithfully and fruitfully in the word. To this in all & euerie not guiltie, prouided they rayle not against bishops nor against the Comunio book,


You did intend some scorne to great Magistrats and men in authority, either alive or deceassed, under couert names to cover som knauery? no as God Judge me my Lord, not guiltie, the good yeare of all the knauerie and knaues to for me. By who will you be tryed ? By the Queene and the Ladies, by the Counsell and the Lordes. What sawcie younker will not meaner tryall serue you? No good Faith my Lord, I loued alwayes to be the worst of the companie.

Well since this is the judgement of the Court, that because there is hope you may prooue a wiser man hereafter, and that you haue some better friend then you are worthie of, you shall haue this fauour; if the inditement happen to be found you shall trauers it, and you shall chuse xij. freeholders bonos & legales homines, that shal enquire of the qualitie of your discourse, and bring in their verdict quindena Paschæ, & if they find guilty, you shall haue a hole bored in your eare. What to do? to weare my Mrs. fauour at? Now, God saue your Mrs. life, my Lord. Clarcke of the peace draw this endytemēt vpõ the foure last articles that he denied, and vpõ the Statute of Scādale, for I tel you we must teach you to learne the lawes of the Realme, as well as your rules of Poetrie Lawes? I trow I baue the law at my fingers endes.


Aures perdētes super & sint Pillory stantes,
Scandala rumantes in Regis consiliantes,
Aut in magnates noua seditiosa loquentes,
Non producentes autores verba ferentes.

Their eares must on the Pillory be nayld
That haue against her highnesse counsell rayld,
Or such as of the Peeres fowle brutes do scatter,
And cannot bring their autor for the matter.

Wherefore you shall find I will keepe me safe . enough from scandaling, And if you do, it is the better for you.

The Third Tract in the volume is “ ULYSSES UPON AJAX,

Written by Mesodiaboles to his Friend Philaretes. Printed at London, for Thomas Gubbins.

1596." This is a facetious piece of pleasantry upon the same subject as the former Tracts.

Taking the whole together, I do not know that we have any thing in the English language, which in style, manner and humour, bears greater resemblance to the performances of Rabelais.



THE Two Volumes which I now place before the public do not contain a greater literary curiosity than this which follows. No other copy is known to exist, except the original, from which this transcript was made, and which I here faithfully subjoin. The original is in his Majesty’s library

This little Poem was purchased at Mr. West's sale, and will be found in the Catalogue of his Books, Art. 4586. It is noticed in Herbert's Edition of Ames's History of Printing, v. 3. p. 1469, who describes this copy. At the back of the last page is a wooden print, representing two savages at full length, betwixt them stands a tree with many owls in it, and upon it is suspended a shield, with T. D. in cypher. Under this 'tree is printed Thomas Da..

The following note which is in manuscript prefixed to the Poem, appears to have been written in the last Century.

" This Poem is reckond a great curiosity never having seen or heard of any such Copy, besides in this it is curious, that some persons well versed in old matters printed in Scotland ownd they never saw any piece of print: well OVOL. II.



documented to be printed in Scotland older than this Poem, or any thing so old, and I am humbly of this opinion, never any thing printed in Scotland before this having occurred to me in any enquiries nor have I observed any printer in Scotland before Thomas Davidson.

“ This is thought to be printed about yē year 1525. In 1536 lle printed Bellendens translation of Hector Boece's Hist. of Scotland and is designed then, the King's printer.”


Tempora magnanimo que nunc felicia Regi

Sydera portendunt, dicere musa cupit.
Ausus ob hec nimium tenui cantare camena,

Incipiam auspitiis rex Jacobe tuis.
Puri dum tu dulce decus, concede fauorem

Edere judicio metra legenda bono.
Torpentes fracto reparcs cum pectine neruos,

Et moueas docilem per tua fila manum.
Principium bifrons anni Jam Janus apertum

Fecerit, et phebus celsius orbe micat.
Ipse potens rerum pater alta mente reponens

Omnia, fatales prospiciensq. vices,
Protinus aligerum coram subet esse ministrum,

Clausaque dat claris scripta ferenda deo.
Jussa peracturus tecto Jouis euolat alto

Nuncius, et rapidum flectitur ante denza,


« PreviousContinue »