1834 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Michael Drayton

Robert Aris Willmott, in Lives of Sacred Poets (1834) 205-06.



Drayton lived "at the bay-window house, next the east end of St. Dunstan's church, in Fleet-Street," and was generally beloved for the gentleness and amiability of his manners. The puritan and the papist united in his praise; and it has been remarked by his biographer, that if his morals had been worse, his fortune would have been better. His sacred poems, like all his longer productions, are tedious and diffuse; but they are the offspring of an humble and religions mind, and many fine thoughts, bold images, and much commanding versification, are buried in Noah's Flood, Moses, his Birth and Miracles, and David and Goliah. He also composed, during the reign of Elizabeth, a volume of spiritual songs, not included in any edition of his works.