1691 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Gervase Markham

Gerard Langbaine, in Account of the English Dramatick Poets (1691) 340-41.



A Gentleman who flourisht under the Reigns of Queen Elizabeth, King James, and King Charles the First: for the later of whom he took up Arms, in the time of the Rebellion: being honour'd by His Majesty with a Captain's Commission. He was the Son of Robert Markham of Cotham, in the County of Nottingham Esq; and was eminently Famous for his numerous Volumes of Husbandry, and Horsemanship; besides what he has writ on Rural Recreations, and Military Discipline. He understood the Practick as well as the Theory of the Art of War: and was esteem'd a good Scholar, and an excellent Linguist, understanding the French, Italian, and Spanish Languages, from all which he collected Notes of Husbandry. In the enumeration of his Works the Reader will be satisfied of his excellent Parts and Abilities: and that he was tam Marti quam Mercurio, vers'd in the Employments of War and Peace: and One piece of Dramatick Poetry which he has publisht, will shew that he Sacrific'd to Apollo, and the Muses, as well as to Mars and Pallas.

Herod and Antipater, a Tragedy printed 4to. Lond. 1622. where, or when this Play was acted the imperfection of my Copy hinders my information. For the Foundation 'tis built on History. See Josephus Ant. Jud. Lib. 14, 15, 16, & 17. Torniel, Salian, Spondanus, Baronii, Ann. &c.

I shall now mention his Works, and first those which treat of Horsemanship, which have made him Famous all over England. Of these he has writ A Discourse of Horsemanship, printed 4to. without Date, and dedicated to Prince Henry Eldest Son to King James the First. Cure of all Diseases incident to Horses, 4to. 1610. English Farriar, 4to. 1649. Masterpiece, 4to. 1662. Faithful Farriar, 8vo. 1667. Perfect Horseman, 12mo. 1671. For Husbandry he publisht Liebault's Le Maison Rustique, or The Country Farm, Fol. Lond. 1616. This Treatise (which was at first translated by Mr. Richard Surflet, a Physitian) our Author enlarg'd with several Additions from the French Books of Serres and Vinet, the Spanish of Albiterio, and the Italian of Grilli, and others. The Art of Husbandry, first translated from the Latine of Conr. Heresachius, by Barnaby Googe, he revis'd and augmented, 4to. 1668. To this I may add Hunger's Prevention, or his Art of Fowling, 8vo. His Epitome, 12mo. &c. In Military Discipline, he has publisht The Souldier's Accidence, and Grammar, 4to. 1635. Besides these the second part of the First Book of The English Arcadia is said to be writ by him: insomuch that he may be accounted if not Unus in Omnibus, at least a Benefactor to the Publick, by whose Works he left behind him, which will (without doubt) eternise his Memory.