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The reader will observe, that what is now spelt Grace Church Street, is in the above Tract, as well as in other works of this time, written Gratious Street. This Tract is in black letter..
5. " THE ENGLISH APE, THE ITALIAN IMT 4TION,The Foot E-STEPPES OF FRAUNCE.
Wherein is explaned the wilful Blindnesse of subtill Mischiefe, the striving for Starres, the catching of Moonshine, and the secrete Sound of many hollow Hearts.
By W. R.
Nulla Pietas Pravis.
At London. Imprinted by Robert Robinson, and are to be sold by Richard Jones, dwelling at Holbourne Conduit, at the Signe of the Rose and Crowne. 1588."
This singular Tract is in black letter, and inscribed
“ To the Right Honorable, and my singular good Lord, Syr Christopher Hatton, Knight, Lord Chauncellor of England, Knyght of the most noble Order of the Garter, and one of her Najesties most honorable Privie Counsell.”
This appears to be a severe satire on the manners of the times, particularly as they relate to dress. The Author is very harsh indeed, when speaking of his countrywomen.
* It is a woonder more than ordinary to beholde theyr perewigs of sundry collours, theyr paynting potts of perlesse perfumes, theyr bớxes of slobber sause, the fleaking of theyr faces, theyr strayned modesty, and theyr counterfayte coy
In so much that they rather seeme curtyzans of Venyce, then matrones of Englande, monsters of Ægypt, then modest maydens of Europe, inchaunting syrens of Syrtes, then diligent searchers of vertue; these inchauntments charme away theyr modesty, and entrap fooles in folly. Bewitcheth them selves wyth wanton wyles, and be setteth other with these bitter smyles.”
The conclusion is an extravagant compliment to the Queen, whom the Author calls “ The Phenix of the World."
6. “ THE COMMENDATION OF COCKES AND COCKFIGHTING,
Wherein is shewed that Cockefighting was before the coming of Christ.
London. Printed for Henrie Tomes, and are to be sold at his Shop, over against Graies Inne Gate, in Holburne. 1607."
This is in black letter, and I do not remember to have seen any earlier publication than this on the subject of this barbarous sport.
7. “ THE REPENTANCE OF ROBERT GREENL, MAISTER OF ARTES, &c. &c.”
I have elsewhere given a detailed account of this curious Pamphlet, which is so rare, that I S 3
doubt not, if produced .. an auction for sale, it would fetch several guineas.
B. “A REMEMBRANCE OF THE HONORS DUE TO THE LIFE AND DEATH OF Robert EARLE OF SALISBURY, LORD TREASURER OP ENGLAND, &c.
Imprinted at London, for John Wright, and are to bee sold at his Shop, neere Christ Church Doore. 1612."
This tribute to the memory of the Earl of Salisbury is in black letter. The Author's name is Richard Johnson. It is partly in prose and partly in verse, but unfortunately is imperfect.
A portrait of the Earl is prefixed, of the value of which I am not competent to judge.
The Bishop of Rochester purchased all the above Tracts for, I believe, half-a-crown. They would now produce a great many guineas.
THE book which I am about to describe is represented to me by Mr. Reed, as one of the scarceșt in the English language.
At p. 79, we are informed that only one hundred copies were printed. That which belongs to the British Museum has a long manuscript of Dr. Dee's writing annexed to it, which seems to be a kind of continuation of the subject.
It is certainly the most rational and methodical that this singular character ever composed. The title page may be thus described :
Within an oblong scroll, at each angle of which are two roses as supporters, and in the center the crown and arms of England, are these words:
" GENERAL AND RARE MEMORIALS, PERTAYNING TO THE PERFECT ARTE OF
NAVIGATION. Annexed to the PARADOXAL Cumpas, in Playne.
Now first published: 24 Yeres after the first Invention thereof."
Round the scroll is
The remainder of the frontispiece, which is engraved on wood, appears to be a representation of the Triumph of England over the Armada of Spain.
On account of the extreme rareness of the book, and the whimsicality of the thing itself, I have transcribed the whole of the Advertisement and Introduction,
A necessary Aduertisement, by an unknown freend, giuen to the modest, and godly readers; who also carefully desire the prosperous state of the Commonwealth of this British KingDOM, and the politicall SecVRITIE thereof,
Lamentable and irkesome * are these our drery dayes: (my welbeloued cuntriinan) seeing the conditions of to to inany, are become such, as, to be to to curious of other † mens dooings : as though they themselues were superhabundantly perfect, or dwelt in security, of not beyng at any tyme hereafter, either surueyed, or controlled for their own.
* Veritas (vt fertur) Odium parit, Ast, tantum id fit, apud veritatis osores : ipsi etiam omnipotentis exosos Deo,
+ Cur quidem vides festucam, quæ est in oculo fratris tui, trabem autem, quæ est in oculo tuo, non animaduertis ? Math. 7.