1820 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sir John Beaumont

William Hazlitt, in Lectures chiefly on the Dramatic Literature of the Age of Elizabeth (1820; 1845) 140-41.



Sir John Beaumont (the brother of our dramatist), whose loyal and religious effusions are not worth very much, very feelingly laments his brother's untimely death in a epitaph upon him:

Thou shouldst have followed me, but Death (to blame)
Miscounted years, and measured age by fame;
So dearly hast thou brought thy precious lines,
Their praise grew swiftly; so thy life declines,
Thy Muse, the hearer's Queen, the readers Love,
All ears, all hearts (but Death's) could please and move.

Beaumont's verses addressed to Ben Jonson at the Mermaid are a pleasing record of their friendship, and of the way in which they "fleeted the time carelessly" as well as studiously "in the golden age" of our poetry.