1687 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

George Chapman

William Winstanley, Lives of the Most Famous English Poets (1687) 113.



George Chapman was one in his time much famed for the Fluency of his Muse; gaining a great repute for his Translation of Homer and Hesiod, which in those times passed as Works done without compare; and indeed considering he was one of the first who brake the Ice in the Translation of such learned Authors, reading the highest conception of their Raptures into a neat polite English, as gave the true meaning of what they intended, and rendred it a style acceptable to the Reader; considering, I say, what Age he lived in, it was very well worthy praise; though since the Translation of Homer is very far out-done by Mr. Ogilby. He also continued that excellent Poem of Hero and Leander, begun by Christopher Marlow, and added very much to the Stage in those times by his Dramatick Writings; as his Blind Beggar of Alexandria, All Fools, the Gentleman Usher, Humorous Days Mirth, May-Day, Monsieur D'Olive, Eastward ho, Two wise men, and all the rest Fools, Widows Tears, Comedies; Bussy D'Amboys, Byron's Tragedy, Bussy D'Amboy's Revenge, Caesar and Pompey, Revenge for Honour, Tragedies; the Temple, Masque of the Middle Temple and Lincoln's Inn, Masques; and Byron's Conspiracy, a History; in all seventeen.