1776 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Thomas Dekker

John Nichols, Note in Original Works of William King (1776) 3:301n.



Thomas Decker was contemporary with Ben Jonson, and contended with that celebrated Laureate for the bays. Though his writings are in small estimation, he had in that age many friends amongst the Poets, particularly with the ingenious Richard Brome. He wrote eight plays; clubbed with Webster in writing three more; and with Rowley and Ford in another. That which was in most esteem was "The Untrussing the humorous Poet," published in 1602, in his own defence, against "The Poetaster" of Jonson, in which he was lashed under the title of Crispinus. Though far inferior to his antagonist, Decker gained some applause, and retaliated on the Laureate under the name of Horace Junior.