1806 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joshua Sylvester

Samuel Egerton Brydges, in Censura Literaria 2 (1806) 141-42.



Joshua Sylvester, many of the particulars of whose life may be found in Dunster's Letter on Milton, was a candidate, in the year 1597, for the office of Secretary to the Company of Merchant-Adventurers at Stade, of which he was a member; on which occasion the unfortunate Earl of Essex interested himself in his favour, and wrote two letters in his behalf, dated from the Court on the last of April: a private one to Mr. Ferrers, the deputy-governor, recommending Mr. Sylvester as an able and honest man; and a general one to the company, to the same purpose, in which he mentions that he had received a very good report of his sufficiency and fitness for the post of Secretary, being both well qualified with language, and many other good parts, and honest and of good conversation; two especial motives of his lordship's request in his behalf.

Ben Jonson has an epigram to Sylvester, and he is eulogized by Drayton; the latter dedicated his Miracles of Moses to Sylvester and Du Bartas. His Tobacco batter'd, &c. was reprinted with King James's Counterblast, and similar tracts, 4to. 1672.