When Mr. J. Payne COLLIER edited his reprint of "The Ghost of Richard the Third" for the Shakespeare Society, he was unable to give the slightest biographical information concerning its Author — CHRISTOPHER BROOKE: and so it has been since as before, with trivial exceptions. I am glad to be enabled to state that a Yorkshire antiquary has for some time been engaged in researches on the Brookes of York, and expects speedily to publish the results through one of the county-societies. I have myself obtained a number of scattered data — mainly through my indefatigable friend COLONEL CHESTER. But inasmuch as there are missing links, I shall postpone their presentation until the above has been published, recognizing that in the groupe of friends of DR. DONNE that will fall to be sketched by us for our edition of his Poems, I shall have fitting opportunity of recording such life-facts as have come down.
I propose now and here mainly to limit myself to a faithful reproduction of our Worthy's very remarkable Will — never before printed.
Preparatory to it I may add in a sentence, that CHRISTOPHER BROOKE was one of several sons of Robert Brooke, Alderman and Mayor of the city of York, called in the register "venerabilis vir" — that in the Parish Register there is this entry of his marriage.
"Married at St. Martin in the Fields, co. Midd. 1619, December 18th, Christoferus Brooke, Ar., & Dnam Mariam Jacob."
And this of his burial in the Parish-Register of St. Andrew's Holborn: "1627/28, Feb. 7. CHRISTOPHER BROOKE, Gent, of Lincoln's Inn: buried there." He was one of that brilliant circle that turned the "Inns of Court" into arenas for the display of the wit of the foremost wits of that foremost age — as still to be read of in BEN JONSON and BACON and FULLER — and in many ways seems to have been prominent. To have had the "Storm" and "Calm" of DR. DONNE addressed to him, and to have been his chosen friend and fellow-sufferer on a critical occasion of his life, were enough to immortalize any name. But with every abatement, the present Poems of themselves will vindicate the contemporary estimate of him, if only the Reader will in patience and kindliness work his way through their Cromwellian-stammering yet also Cromwellian thought-laden verse. The Will is exactly as follows:
Statutum est omnibus Semel mori.
Therefore This is the last will and testament of me Christopher Brooke of Lincolns Inn in the Countie of Middlesex Esquier, by which I revoke and repeale all other and former wills and by this doe appoint and ordaine my onelie sonne John Brooke whom I had by my wife the ladie Jacob, now at Schoole at Edmondton and of the age of eight yeares and more, to be my sole and onelie Executor. Howbeit I hartelie praie my worthie and loving brother Mr. Doctor Brooke and my deere Sister the ladie Marshall to take care of him and of his education in learneinge and in the feare of God, and that they will take letters of administration for the manageinge of my poore estate and the gettinge in of such debtts and rents as are and shalbe due and owinge unto me for his my said childes use and benefitt untill he shall accomplishe the age of seventeene yeares. Item I give and devise unto my said sonne John Brooke and to the heires of his bodie lawfully begotten, the greate howse at yorke wherein my father sometimes dwelt, and for default of such issue, then to William Brooke eldest sonne of my brother Robert Brooke and to his heires for ever. Item I give unto the said William Brooke to and for his education,
and for some small amendment of his fortune in this world, my howse uppon the pavement in Yorke, which I bought of mine unckle Percivall Brooke, and now in the tenure and occupation of Jeffray Dent, Haberdasher, to have and to hold unto him the said William Brooke and his heires forever. Item my tenn akcers of Marsh ground scittuate and lyinge in Purley marsh in Eastham in the countie of Essex now in the tenure and occupation of my good tennant Toby Dixon of Eastham yeoman, for which is reserved and yearelie payeable by him the rent of ffowerteene poundes per annum. I give and devise unto my said sonne John and to the heires of his bodie lawfully begotten and for default of such issue then to my said brother Doctor and the heires of his bodie, and for default of such issue, Then to my said Nephews William Brooke and his heires forever. Item for the howses and land of Inheritance in Southampton which was my wives and by her and my selfe by fine in her lifetyme conveyed to the use of herselfe for Sixtie yeares if she lived so long, and after to me and my heires forever with a trust for mainetaining her children, as by the said fine and wrightinge leadinge the uses of the same may appears: they are six howses and a small parcell of meadowe ground called Lillibone vizt two of them the best howses with two stables and Haylofts in the tenure and occupacion of Mr. ffrancis Knowles of the towne of Southampton marchant or his assignes ffor which twenty pounds rent per annum is reserved, two other of them in the tenure and occupacion of Edward Knowler and James Parker, for which three poundes a peece rent is reserved, but ffiftie shillinges a peece onelie by agreement received and the other two in the tenure and occupation of John Marlowe and Owen Sharfe, and the said meadowe ground in lease to one Elenor Hart widdowe, for ye yeerlie rent of ffower poundes tenne shillinges. Now in performance of the said trust (one of ye children intended being dead) I doe give and devise all the said howses with their and everie of their appurtennances and the said parcell of meadowe ground and the revercon and revercons of the same with the severall rents thereuppon reserved as followeth, that is to saie unto Mary Jacob my said wives daughter and her assignes for tearme of her naturall life and after her decease to my said sonne John Brooke and the heires of his body and for default of such issue then to the right heires of the said Dame Mary Jacob, my said late wife forever, and my will is, that the said Mary Jacob shall also for so manie yeares as she shall happen to live, have the rent of ffyve poundes reserved uppon a lease made unto one Gregory Syms, Carpenter, of a howse in Southampton in the parishe of St. Maries which was her mothers. But if she die during the said tearme, Then my will is that my said sonne John Brooke shall have the same for the howse of Kirbymooresyde and the moytie of the Park, Booforth Leys and the west Ings with their appurtnnances which I have for a good number of yeares yet to come, if my brother Bowes and my sister Bowes (for whose lives and mine owne, the lease was granted from the Crowne) doe so long live with the revercon and rent of an underlease made by me to William Cartwright gent deceased, all my estate terms and interest therein I give and bequeath unto my said sonne John Brooke and his assignes, and whereas there was in the life time of the said William Cartwright one hundred poundes due unto me for his rent for the same, whereof ffowerscore had been long deteyned in his handes for which he from tyme to tyme p'mised to p'cure from the Duke of Buckingham his Grace by the meanes of Mr. ffotherley his Graces servant the exchange of one life, that is to saie that a new lease should be had and obtained from the said Duke whereinto the life of the said John Brooks should be put in steade of the life of the said Richard Bowes or of the said Mary his wife, Now my hope is that my Cosen Ursula Cartwright widdowe and relict of the said William Cartwright will for the one hundred poundes restinge in her handes as administrix of her said husband uppon the Surrender of the originall lease procure the exchange of the said life as aforesaid, and then my will is, that out of the rent of seaventie poundes which (havinge remitted tenn poundes of the rent of ffowerscore poundes for a long time formerlie paid) is now onely payable, there be answered and paid to the eldest sonne of my sister Hesketh, towards his education every yeere so long as the ladie Crewe wife of Sir Randall Crewe late Cheife Justice of the Kings bench shall live, the some of Tenn poundes per annum at Ester and Michaelmas by even porcons and the firste paiement to begin and be at that of the said ffeastes which shall first happen after my death, But if the said life be not changed as aforesaid by the said Mrs. Cartwright within five yeares after my death, But that the estate in the said manner howse and premisses depend onely uppon the lives of my said brother and sister Bowes, Then my will is, that after the said five yeares all the rents and profitts of the said lease and tearme, together with the said debt of one hundred poundes be Collected received and sued for, and made a stock and meanes of lyveliehood and mainetenance for my said sonne John, in regard he maie happen to overlive my said brother and sister Bowes for manie yeares. Item whereas I have an estate in the howse in Drurie Lane in which I and my wife dwelt for the terms of eleven yeares or thereabouts yet to come, for which I paie the rent of £xx per annum and haveinge leased the same unto Sir William Bamfeild knight, receive the rent of ffiftie poundes per annum, my will is that the overplus of the said rent shalbe paid and disposed of as followeth vim twentie poundes thereof yeerelie and everie yeare duringe the said terme paid unto Charles Johnes my godsonne one of the fellowes of Trinitie Colledge in Cambridge, whom I have maynteyned and brought upp from a child, the said summe of Twentie poundes to be a stay and help unto him, untill by the grace of god, and by his owne industrie and learneinge he shall or may obteyne some better meanes of livielihood, and the residue of the overplus of the said rent during the said terme whatsoever it shall be, I give unto John Crispin my servant, together with all my shirtes wastcoates, and all my weareing apparrell whatsoever I have not by this my will p'ticularly bequeathed. Item for the howses and shopps in Chancerie Lane and Whites alley in which I have a lease for the tearme of about one or two and twentie yeares yet to come and paie for the same tenn poundes per annum and doe or should receive uppon the said severall demises thereof the some of threescore poundes and more, over and above the said rent of Tenn poundes, Besides that the howse in Chancerie lane at the signe of the ffryer now lett for Tenn poundes per annum will about six yeares hence whence the lease shall end, be worth thirtie poundes per annum or thereabouts, my will is that my Nephew Arthure Marshall and my nephews the youngest sonne of my sister Bowes, shall have paid unto them everie yeare towards their education the severall somes of Tenn poundes a peece, to be paid unto them and either of them respectively duringe the said terms, if they or either of them shall live so long, and all the rest howsoever ariseinge to be received and husbanded amongst other thinges for my said sonne and executor John Brooke, as I trust my good brother Doctor and my Sister Marshall will doe or cause to be done: ffor himselfe my said brother Doctor I have bin so ill an husband of myne owne fortunes which god in his goodnes sent me, that I cannot by any legacie of moment testifie my love unto him or to anie other of my brothers, or to anie my deere sisters. Howbeit whereas he and I made meanes to lend unto my Nephewe Robert Wadsworth Marchant, one hundred poundes to make him a stock, whereof he my said brother was to paie ffiftie poundes for his part, and myselfe other fiftie for myne, I have taken such order with the Creditor, that he my said brother shall never be troubled for the same, Neither would I have my said Nephewe called uppon for the same or his band putt in suite, unlesse he shall happen to prove rich and well able to paie the said one hundred poundes, and in such case I leave him and the said debt to my said brother Doctor and my sister Marshall and to my said Executor when he shall come to the age of one and twenty yeares either to sue for or to forbeare to sue for the same. Item I give unto my said sister Marshall my rings with the Amathist in it which I used to weare at my bandstringe and my silver kann and to my sister Bowes my ringe with seven small Dymondes in it, which I used to weare on my litle finger and my silver porringer and to my sister Hesketh my two silver drincking bowles and my fower plane spoones and to my sister Brooke my brother Roberte's wife, my silver salt, and my litle trencher salt, and to my brother Henry's wife my fine silver spoones with the knopps at the ends and my od greater silver bowls. Item I give to the poore of that parishe where I shall happen to die, the some of five poundes, Item I give unto my deere and noble Cosen Sir John Brooke my pictures, the one of my lord of Southampton and the other of Mr. Richard Martin, And if I die at yorke, and my other pictures be in Sir Arthure Ingrams howse, then I give them all unto him. Item my marble table and frame, and the presse for clothes which are in Drurye Lane howse, and what els is there of mine, I give unto my good Tennant and Cosen the ladie Barnfeild, unto my nephews and godsonne Charles Bowes I give my silke Grograine Cloake lined with pincked satten and my blacke Cloth Cloaks lyned with velvett and my silke stockinges, and to my brother Hesketh my Turkie grograine Cloake lyned with plushe and my best sute of apparrell and my best beaver hatt and to my brother Henry, my Chamber or studdy gowns and my worser Beaver hatt and my Reader's gowne of Cloth with all the rest of my apparrell and I pray my brother Doctor that all my bookes aswell manuscripts as printed of all sortes may be kept and preserved for my said sonne John. for my funerall charges and blacks, my estate being so small as it is, I know not what to saie, but leave it to the direccon of my brother Doctor, and my sister Marshall or in his absence to my said sister and my brother Hesketh, ffor my expences have been of late so greate, and my gettinges so small, that it will hardlie beare blacks save to my brothers and sisters, in which number I account my brother and sister Towrie. And now that I have done with this my poore worldlie estate, let me likewise have done with this vayne world it selfe, which to the happiest man, is but as a glasse, brighte and britle, and evermore in feare and danger of breakeinge, and lett me turne myne eyes to heaven where my redeemer liveth forever, by whose grace, mercies and mediation I who was a wicked Rebell, am now through faith repentance and teares reconciled to God, and am well contented to make an end of this frayle and Mortall life, becawse I stronglie hope that this end and passage from this transitory life will bring me to that eternall kingdome of which there nether is nor ever shalbe anie end at all. Amen Lord Jesu Amen, This eight daie of December 1627. Anno Regni Charoli Regis Angliae &c. Tertio.
"A Codicill of Addicon and alteration of and unto some part of the will aforesaid as followeth.
"ffirst for that my sicknes and inflimitie increaseinge, it maie well fall out that I may die before I come to yorke. Therefore my will is that my pictures and some other thinges, shalbe disposed of in manner followinge, ffirst the pictures of the Earle of Southampton and Mr. Martin, I will and devise unto Sir John Brooke as I formerlie have devised the same. The picture of our ladie and Christ in her lapp with Joseph looking over them, I give and bequeath unto my good neighbor and freind William Ravenscrofte of Lincolnes Inne Esqr., my pictures of the birth of our blessed saviour and of his passion and death and of his being knowne after his resurrection by breakeinge of bread and my picture of Mr. Justice Clinch being a good peeiece, my Cypres chest and my Caskett for botles of strong water, and all my lyninge and beddinge with the Chaier and stooles and long Cushion stoole now in Mr. Ravenscrofte's chamber, (except the bed wherein I ly which I will shall be kept for th' use of my sonne John, together with the bedstead and furniture) I give unto my good brother Mr. Doctor Brooke, my pictures of my selfe and my wife and two lantskipps, I give unto my deare Sister the ladie Marshall, my picture of Mary Magdaline and my night shadowed picture and peece of Appollo and the Muses, being an originall of an Italian Mrs. hand as I have bin made beleeve, I give unto my deere ancient and worthie freind Doctor Dunn the Deane Pawles [sic] my picture of the ladie, Elizabeth her grace the Countesse of Southampton, my lady Anne Wallop, and my lady Isabella Smith I give unto my good freind Mrs. Mary ffulwood wife unto Mr. Adam ffulwood of Edmonton in the Countie of Middlesex gent, with whom my sonne John is at board, my lesser Cabonett and the stoole frame for it, I give unto my loving neice Ingram wife of Mr. Hugh Ingram, my greater Cabonett with the frame thereunto which was my wifes, and oftentimes affirmed to have bene by her given unto Mr. ffrancis KnowIls of Southampton Alderman, her Cosen, I give unto him the said Mr. Knowles, and by that token I intreate him, that he would be pleased to be carefull of those howses and landes in Southampton that neither my wives daughter Mary Jacob nor my sonne John maie be deceived in the number of the said howses or the viewe of the same This Codicill was added to the will the second of January 1627.
"1st, Admon 15 Dec. 1628 to Samuell Brooke, S. T. P. brother of the defunct, John Brooke, testator's son being a minor
"2nd. Admon 2 Dec. 1631 to Jane Ingram niece of the defunct, of goods unadminstered by said Samuel Brooke, S. T. P. now also deceased.
"3rd. Admon 29 Apr. 1633 to Tho. Hesketh uncle by the mother's side of 3d Jane Ingram now also deceased
"4th. Admon 28 Aug. 1634 to Tho. Hesketh esq. of goods unadministered by the aforesaid Tho. Hesketh now deceased"
"The will was finally proved 19 Nov. 1638 by John Brooke, the son of testator, and the Executor named, he having arrived at the age prescribed in the will.
"Prerogative Court of Canterbury, Doctors Commons 112 Barrington.
There are various items and names in this quaint old Will — which curiously resembles that of the Puritan THOMAS BROOKES as set forth in our Life of him introductory to our edition of his Works (6 vols. 8vo.) — inviting commentary. We must, meanwhile, refrain, save to note the life-long fidelity of the friendship that existed between DR. DONNE (spelled "Dunn" as in the early days) and our Worthy, as evidenced by the "picture" of the Lady Elizabeth, left to his "deere ancient and worthie freind." Alas! that the Dean himself only survived a very few years. One misses the name of WILLIAM BROWNE the "sweet Singer" of "Britannia's Pastorals," whose glowing admiration and affection for our Brooke, recurs almost pathetically. I cannot allow myself to think any shadow fell on their "fellowship."
Leaving these hitherto unknown memorials of CHRISTOPHER BROOKE, as our present contribution to his Life, we have now to turn to his Poetry herein collected and re-printed for the first time.
"The Ghost of Richard the Third" naturally claims our chief attention, and we begin with it. In his Introduction to the Shakespeare Society edition of "The Ghost" Mr. COLLIER thus summarizes the things bearing on its authorship: "Who was the author of 'The Ghost of Richard the Third'? No name or initials are found in the title-page, but the letters C. B. are appended to the dedication: these may belong to Charles Best who was a writer in Davison's 'Poetical Rhapsody,' 1602, or to Christopher Brooke, the author of some 'Eglogues dedicated to his much loved friend Mr. William Browne,' printed in the same year as the poem before us. It will be observed that Browne has lines in commendation of his 'worthy and ingenious friend, the author,' prefixed to 'The Ghost of Richard the Third,' as well as similar poems by George Chapman, George Wythers (or Wither), Robert Daborne, and Ben Jonson, and four Latin verses by Fr. Dynne, of the Inner Temple. We are, therefore, more disposed to assign 'The Ghost of Richard the Third' to Brooke than to Best, to whom we formerly thought it might be attributed. We owe the suggestion that Christopher Brooke was the author of 'The Ghost of Richard the Third' to Mr. Rodd" (pp. xiii-xiv).
The assignation to BEST was a mere hap-hazard guess from the initials C. B., — his trifles in Davison's "Poetical Rhapsody" giving no evidence whatever of the kind of man to win the praise of such men as Chapman and Ben Jonson, not to say that he was altogether outside of the circle of the "Inns of Court." So that independent of other evidence Best ought never to have been named as a possible author of "The Ghost of Richard the Third."
Onward a little, Mr. COLLIER after quoting Browne's verse-tribute to BROOKE in his "Britannia's Pastorals" — of which more anon — remarks further, "There was therefore, an obvious and probably intimate connexion between Christopher Brooke and William Browne; and perhaps the fact of his authorship was so well understood at the time, that Brooke did not consider it necessary to put more than his initials to the poem contained in the ensuing pages" (p. xv). In confirmation of the "obvious and [certainly not probably] intimate connexion" between Brooke and Browne and specifically preparing us for the after-production of such a poem as "The Ghost of Richard the Third" I would now quote from the "Shepheard's Pipe," — the lines being strangely overlooked by Mr. COLLIER. The fifth eclogue is addressed to BROOKE, and in the dialogue, based, self-revealingly on an actual conversation between the two friends, Browne seekes to incite Brooke to attempt higher flights than any hitherto in poetry. Brooke disclaims, at first, such ambitious ideas as
—to search the hidden mistery
Of tragicke scenes
but eventually promises to comply with his brother poet's counsel. Here is the passage, with italicized lines for special pondering:
Cease, Cutty, cease to feed these simple flockes,
"And for a trumpet change thine oaten-reeds;
O're looke the vallies as aspiring rockes;
And rather march in steele then shepheards weeds."
Beleeve me, Cutty! for heroike deeds
Thy verse is fit, not for the lives of swaines,
(Though both thou cans't do well) and nowe proceeds
To leave high pitches for the lowly plaines:
Take thou a harpe in hand, strive with Apollo;
Thy Muse was made to lead, then scorne to follow.
Willy, to follow sheepe I ne're shall scorne,
Much lesse to follow any deity;
Who 'gainst the sun (though weakned by the morne)
Would vie with lookes, needeth an eagle's eye:
"I dare not search the hidden mistery
Of tragicke scenes;" nor in a buskin'd stile
Through death and horror march, nor their height fly
Whose pens were fed with blood of this faire Ile.
It shall content me on these happy downes
To sing the strife for garlands, not for crownes.
O who would not aspire, and by his wing
Keep stroke with fame, and of an earthly jarre
Another lesson teach the spheres to sing?
Who would a shepheard that might be a star?...
"Willy, by thy incitement I'le assay
To raise my subject higher than tofore,"
And sing it to our swaines next holy-day,
Which (as approv'd) shall fill them with the store
Of such rare accents; if dislik'd, no more
Will I a higher straine then shepheards use,
But sing of woods and rivers, as before.
Other things being equal, few will hesitate in recognizing in "The Ghost of Richard Third" the "higher strain" promised. It is also to be remembered that Brooke along with the same Writers whose verses preface "The Ghost," wrote lines to BROWNE before his "Britannia's Pastorals."
Mr. COLLIER concludes: "We thought at one time of printing Brooke's "Eglogues" and scattered poems with "The Ghost of Richard the Third," but they are totally unconnected in style and manner, and do not in any way illustrate each other" (p. xv). It is plain the (now) venerable Bibliographer had never read either Brooke's "Eclogue" (there are not "Eglogues" of Brooke, the others being by Davies of Hereford and Wither) or his scattered poems: for our notes call attention to words of an unusual kind in themselves and in their use, common to "The Ghost of Richard the Third," and Brooke's (fully) avowed productions, and so in every way illustrative of the other. This, in addition to what I have adduced, settles the authorship of the "Ghost." Take these examples, among numerous: "percell guylt" (page 60, line 14) in the "Ghost" and in the poem, in honor of Sir Arthur Chichester: "working head" (page 88, line 14) and in "Eclogue" (page 161, line 3) — a frequent word: — "soundlesse" (page 79, line 17) and in Elegy on Prince Henry: (page 185, line 1) — a very noticeable word, being = fathomless (not "without sound" as in Mrs. Norton's Lady of Garaye "where the soundless feet of angels pass" (page 103): Pegase (page 140, line 21) in the spelling same in Elegy on Prince of Wales (page 177, line 15): and so with "praeludium," "impt," "rebate," and other words — all duly noted in their places. It is observable too that as in "The Ghost of Richard the Third" there is the Shakespeare reminiscence [Julius Caesar v. 5.]
The humors and the elements combin'd
To forme in them, the abstract of perfection
(p. 113, l. 11)
so in the Elegy on Prince of Wales, we have identically the same line, save one word, viz: "The humours and the elements combin'd" (page 180, line 11). I invite critical attention to these words common to "The Ghost" and to the other Poems of our re-print, as well as observation of the whole make and style and way of putting things so as to satisfy of oneness of authorship.
Mr. COLLIER has very aptly noticed the bearing of our poem of "The Ghost of Richard the Third" on Shakespeare's great tragedy, and pointed out the laudatory allusions to "gentle Will" in the opening of the "Legend" (page 79, stanza i.) — of whose Tragedy Brooke must have been an earnest student. He has also re-called that the form of "The Ghost of Richard the Third" is that of the historical legends in "The Mirror for Magistrates" and Niccol's "Winter Night's Vision," both of which consist of tragic poems of the same kind, put into the mouths of the Characters intended to be portrayed. Dr. GILES FLETCHER'S "Rise of Richard the Third" and SIR JOHN BEAUMONT'S "Bosworth," will yield interesting grounds for comparison to the Reader: the former in our edition of Dr. Fletcher's Poems in our Miscellanies (Vol. III), the latter in our edition of Beaumont's complete Poems.
BROOKE in "The Ghost" makes Richard refer to a "vile play" on JANE SHORE. Mr. COLLIER gives references to several: and also on Richard the Third (pp. xi-xiii.) One item must be recorded, to wit, that "on the 22d June, 1602, Ben Jonson was paid £10 by Henslowe in earnest of a play to be called "Richard Crook-back," and of some additions to Kyd's "Spanish Tragedy" (p xii).
Of "The Ghost of Richard the Third," — with admission of an occasional lack of taste in a conceit and halting of the verse (though the verse on the whole is not inharmonious) a painstaking student will form a high estimate. It has some very vivid portraitures and some noble sentiments nobly and even fearlessly expressed, as thus "If reason rul'd men, then what need of kings?" and "They that no ill commit, no ill need feare." The remorse of Richard is powerfully uttered and the circumstances weirdly painted in. Thus on the eve of the murder of the young princes "Shame did appeare; dead pittie rose to light." Then the truly grand stanzas, each commencing with the famous Raleigh"Methought" (pp 136-7) It is infinitely superior to the "True Tragedy of Richard the Third" (1594) as well as to Dr. Legge's Latin drama — reprinted for the Shakespeare Society.
The "Eclogue" and "Epithalamium" have fine touches, if the latter be over-warm: the "Elegy on Henry Prince of Wales" is laboured, but has fine lines that stick to the memory: the long poem on SIR ARTHUR CHICHESTER is now fortunately rescued from the peril of a single MS. copy by the great kindness of its possessor the Rev. Thomas Corser, M.A , of Stand Rectory: the short scattered pieces I have with great difficulty brought together from unique copies of the respective volumes and MSS.
I cannot better close our little Introduction than with BROWNE'S tribute to Brooke in "Britannia's Pastorals" (Booke 2. Song 2: Hazlitt, Vol. II. pp. 10-11).
Well-languag'd Danyel: Brooke, whose polish't lines
Are fittest to accomplish high designes,
Whose pen (it seemes) still young Apollo guides,
Worthy the forked hill; for ever glides
Streames from thy braine, so faire, that Time shall see
Thee honour'd by thy verse, and it by thee.
And when thy temple's well-deserving bayes,
Might impe a pride in thee to reach thy praise;
As in a crystall glasse, fill'd to the ring
With the cleare water, of as cleare a spring,
A steady hand may very safely drop
Some quantity of gold, yet o're the top
Not force the liquor run: although before
The glasse (of water) could containe no more:
Yet so, all-worthy Brooke, though all men sound
With plummets of just praise thy skill profound,
Thou in thy verse those attributes canst take,
And not apparent ostentation mike,
That any second can thy vertues raise,
Striving as much to hide as merit praise.
ALEXANDER B. GROSART.
POSTSCRIPT. — HAZLITT in his "Handbook" (s.n.) refers to Academiae Oxoniensis Pietas erga ser. et pot. Jacobum Angliae &c. (1603) for Verses contributed by our Brooke. This proves a mistake. The two lines (for these are all) are signed "Christophorus Brooke, Gloucestercensis": and the Matriculation Register shows him to have matriculated at Gloucester Hall 5 Nov. 1602, aged 17, and describes him as "generosus fil" and of co. Sussex. Our Brooke was of York and his father a "merchant," ergo not "generosus."
Further — in the sad absence of memorials of Christopher Marlowe of "the mighty line," it is worth-while to note here the occurrence of a John Marlowe in the Will of our Worthy, as "tenant." The name is so rare that it is just possible an examination of the Southampton Registers might yield fresh data on the author of "Doctor Faustus." "John" was his father's Christian name, but he died in 1605. He had a brother "John."
It is also noticeable that Mr. Richard Martin's name is in the Will. He was doubtless the same with Sir John Davies' friend and after-enemy. (See our edition of Sir John Davies.) G.