The first of an anonymous pair of homoerotic pastorals, which in the preface to Cynthia Richard Barnfield says are based on Virgil's second Eclogue. The complete title is given as "The Teares of an Affectionate Shepheard Sicke for Love. Or the Complaint of Daphnis for the Love of Ganimede."
George Klawitter: "Barnfield defends the love of the shepherd for the boy and attacks the suggestion by his critics that the poem means something else, but even today careful reading reveals various historical figures as the personae of 'The Affectionate Shepheard': Penelope Devereux, Charles Blount, Lord Rich, and Philip Sidney" Complete Poems (1990) 30. Guendolin, who loved one now dead, is thus "Stella," since married to the "old man," Rich, and mistress of Charles Blount.
William Beloe: "The author appears to have had in view, for imitation, the second Eclogue of Virgil, but it must be confessed that much cannot be said in favour of his poetry" Anecdotes of Literature 2 (1807) 68.
Thomas Park: "It is vain to plead the example of Virgil, in his Eclogue of Alexis: such licenses admit of no excuses" Restituta or ... English Literature Revived 4 (1816) 492.
Samuel Austin Allibone: "A copy of the Affectionate Shepherd sold in Reed's sale for £16 10s. Beloe notices a copy in Sion College Libary. In 1816 James Boswell presented to the Members of the Roxburghe Club a reprint (34 copies, 4to) of Poems by Richard Barnfield, including Remarks by the late Edmund Malone. One of these copies was disposed of at Bindley's sale for £6 16s. 6d. Boswell's sale, £45 6s" Critical Dictionary of English Literature (1858-71; 1882) 1:127.
W. Davenport Adams: "The volume consists of twenty sonnets, in the form of English hexameters, in which the author bewails his unsuccessful love for a beautiful youth called Gannymede, 'in a strain,' says Warton, 'of the most tender passion.' He calls this work 'nothing else but an imitation of Virgill, in the second eclogue of Alexis'" Dictionary of English Literature (1878) 8.
Herbert E. Cory: "Richard Barnefield, a sensitive, somewhat decadent poet, who wrote a few pretty but not very original poems in his youth, and suddenly became silent, published in 1594 The Affectionate Shepherd, two eclogues which he claimed to be 'nothing else but an imitation of Virgil in the second Eglogue of Alexis.' The poem, a rather morbid complaint because a youth beloved by the poet is infatuated with one Guendolen, is really Virgilian only in outline, and is much more full of Sidney and Spenser. It is Spenserian sensuousness grown sickly, the characteristic work of an immature and somewhat academic poet" "Spenserian Pastoral" PMLA 25 (1910) 251.
Scarce had the morning Starre hid from the light
Heavens crimson Canopie with stars bespangled,
But I began to rue th' unhappy sight
Of that faire Boy that had my hart intangled;
Cursing the Time, the Place, the sense, the sin;
I came, I saw, I viewd, I slipped in.
If it be sinne to love a sweet-fac'd Boy,
(Whose amber locks trust up in golden tramels
Dangle adowne his lovely cheekes with joy,
When pearle and flowers his faire haire enamels)
If it be sinne to love a lovely Lad;
Oh then sinne I, for whom my soule is sad.
His Ivory-white and Alabaster skin
Is staind throughout with rare Vermillion red,
Whose twinckling starrie lights doe never blin
To shine on lovely Venus (Beauties bed:)
But as the Lillie and the blushing Rose,
So white and red on him in order growes.
Upon a time the Nymphs bestird them-selves
To trie who could his beautie soonest win:
But he accounted them but all as Elves,
Except it were the faire Queene Guendolen,
Her he embrac'd, of her was beloved,
With plaints he proved, and with teares he moved.
But her an Old-Man had beene sutor too,
That in his age began to doate againe;
Her would he often pray, and often woo,
When through old-age enfeebled was his Braine:
But she before had lov'd a lustie youth
That now was dead, the cause of all her ruth.
And thus it hapned, Death and Cupid met
Upon a time at swilling Bacchus house,
Where daintie cates upon the Boord were set,
And Goblets full of wine to drinke carouse:
Where Love and Death did love the licor so,
That out they fall and to the fray they goe.
And having both their Quivers at their backe
Fild full of Arrows; Th' one of fatall steele;
The other all of gold; Deaths shaft was black,
But Loves was yellow: Fortune turnd her wheele;
And from Deaths Quiver fell a fatall shaft,
That under Cupid by the winde was waft.
And at the same time by ill hap there fell
Another Arrow out of Cupids Quiver;
The which was carried by the winde at will,
And under Death the amorous shaft did shiver:
They being parted, Love tooke up Deaths dart,
And Death tooke up Loves Arrow (for his part.)
Thus as they wandred both about the world,
At last Death met with one of feeble age:
Wherewith he drew a shaft and at him hurld
The unknowne Arrow; (with a furious rage)
Thinking to strike him dead with Deaths blacke dart,
But he (alas) with Love did wound his hart.
This was the doting foole, this was the man
That lov'd faire Guendolena Queene of Beautie;
Shee cannot shake him off, doo what she can,
For he hath vowd to her his soules last duety:
Making him trim upon the holy-daies;
And crownes his Love with Garlands made of Baies.
Now doth he stroke his Beard; and now (againe)
He wipes the drivel from his filthy chin;
Now offers he a kisse; but high Disdaine
Will not permit her hart to pity him:
Her hart more hard than Adamant or steele,
Her hart more changeable than Fortunes wheele.
But leave we him in love (up to the eares)
And tell how Love behav'd himselfe abroad;
Who seeing one that mourned still in teares
(A young man groaning under Loves great Load)
Thinking to ease his Burden, rid his paines:
For men have griefe as long as life remaines.
Alas (the while) that unawares he drue
The fatall shaft that Death had dropt before;
By which deceit great harme did then insue,
Stayning his face with blood and filthy goare.
His face, that was to Guendolen more deere
Than love of Lords, or any lordly Peere.
This was that faire and beautifull young-man,
Whom Guendolena so lamented for;
This is that Love whom she doth curse and ban,
Because she doth that dismall chaunce abhor:
And if it were not for his Mothers sake,
Even Ganimede himselfe she would forsake.
Oh would shee would forsake my Ganimede,
Whose sugred love is full of sweete delight,
Upon whose fore-head you may plainely reade
Loves Pleasure, grav'd in yvorie Tables bright:
In whose faire eye-balls you may clearely see
Base Love still staind with foule indignitie.
Oh would to God he would but pitty mee,
That love him more than any mortall wight;
Then he and I with love would soone agree,
That now cannot abide his Sutors sight.
O would to God (so I might have my fee)
My lips were honey, and thy mouth a Bee.
Then shouldst thou sucke my sweete and my faire flower
That now is ripe, and full of honey-berries:
Then would I leade thee to my pleasant Bower
Fild full of Grapes, of Mulberries, and Cherries;
Then shouldst thou be my Waspe or else my Bee,
I would thy hive, and thou my honey bee.
I would put amber Bracelets on thy wrests,
Crownets of Pearle about thy naked Armes:
And when thou sitst at swilling Bacchus feasts
My lips with charmes should save thee from all harmes:
And when in sleepe thou tookst thy chiefest Pleasure,
Mine eyes should gaze upon thine eye-lids Treasure.
And every Morne by dawning of the day,
When Phoebus riseth with a blushing face,
Silvanus Chappel-Clarkes shall chaunt a Lay,
And play thee hunts-up in thy resting place:
My Coote thy Chamber, my bosome thy Bed;
Shall be appointed for thy sleepy head.
And when it pleaseth thee to walke abroad,
(Abroad into the herds to take fresh ayre:)
The Meades with Floras treasure should be strowde,
(The mantled meaddowes, and the herds so fayre.)
And by a silver Well (with golden sands)
Ile sit me downe, and wash thine yvory hands.
And in the sweltring heate of summer time,
I would make Cabinets for thee (my Love:)
Sweet-smelling Arbours made of Eglantine
Should be thy shrine, and I would be thy Dove.
Coole Cabinets of fresh greene Laurell boughs
Should shadow us, ore-set with thicke-set Eughes.
Or if thou list to bathe thy naked limbs,
Within the Christall of a Pearle-bright brooke,
Paved with dainty pibbles to the brims;
Or cleare, wherein thyselfe thy selfe mayst looke;
Weele goe to Ladon, whose still trickling noyse,
Will lull thee fast asleepe amids thy joyes.
Or if thoult goe unto the River side,
To angle for the sweet fresh-water fish:
Arm'd with thy implements that will abide
(Thy rod, hooke, line) to take a dainty dish;
Thy rods shall be of cane, thy lines of silke,
Thy hooks of silver, and thy bayts of milke.
Or if thou lov'st to heare sweet Melodie,
Or pipe a Round upon an Oaten Reede,
Or make thy selfe glad with some myrthfull glee,
Or play them Musicke whilst thy flocke doth feede;
To Pans owne Pipe Ile helpe my lovely lad,
(Pans golden Pype) which he of Syrinx had.
Or if thou dar'st to climbe the highest Trees
For Apples, Cherries, Medlars, Peares, or Plumbs,
Nuts, Walnuts, Filbeards, Chest-nuts, Cervices,
The hoary Peach, when snowy winter comes;
I have fine Orchards full of mellowed frute;
Which I will give thee to obtaine my sute.
Not proud Alcynous himselfe can vaunt,
Of goodlier Orchards or of braver Trees
Than I have planted; yet thou wilt not graunt
My simple sute; but like the honey Bees
Thou suckst the flowre till all the sweet be gone;
And lov'st mee for my Coyne till I have none.
Leave Guendolen (sweet hart) though she be faire
Yet is she light; not light in vertue shining:
But light in her bahaviour, to impaire
Her honour in her Chastities declining;
Trust not her teares, for they can watonnize,
When teares in pearle are trickling from her eyes.
If thou wilt come and dwell with me at home;
My sheep-cote shall be strowd with new greene rushes:
Weele haunt the trembling Prickets as they rome
About the fields, along the hauthorne bushes;
I have a pie-bald Curre to hunt the Hare:
So we will live with daintie forrest fare.
Nay more than this, I have a Garden-plot,
Wherein there wants nor hearbs, nor roots, nor flowers;
(Flowers to smell, roots to eate, hearbs for the pot,)
And dainty Shelters when the Welkin lowers:
Sweet-smelling Beds of Lillies and of Roses,
Which Rosemary banks and Lavender incloses.
There growes the Gilliflowre, the Mynt, the Dayzie
(Both red and white,) the blew-veynd-Violet:
The purple Hyacinth, the Spyke to please thee,
The scarlet dyde Carnation bleeding yet;
The Sage, the Savery, and sweet Margerum,
Isop, Tyme, and Eye-bright, good for the blinde and dumbe.
The Pinke, the Primrose, Cowslip, and Daffadilly,
The Hare-bell blue, the crimson Cullumbine,
Sage, Lettis, Parsley, and the milke-white Lilly,
The Rose, and speckled flowre cald Sops in wine,
Fine pretie King-cups, and the yellow Bootes,
That growes by Rivers, and by shallow Brookes.
And manie thousand moe (I cannot name)
Of hearbs and flowers that in gardens grow,
I have for thee; and Coneyes that be tame,
Yong Rabbets, white as Swan, and blacke as Crow,
Some speckled here and there with daintie spots:
And more I have two mylch and milke-white Goates.
All these, and more, Ile give thee for thy love;
If these, and more, may tyce thy love away:
I have a Pidgeon-house, in it a Dove,
Which I Love more than mortall tongue can say:
And last of all, Ile give thee a little Lambe
To play withall, new weaned from her Dam.
But if thou wilt not pittie my Complaint,
My Teares, nor Vowes, nor Oathes, made to thy Beautie;
What shall I doo? But languish, die, or faint,
Since thou cost scorne my Teares, and my Soules Duetie:
And Teares contemned, Vowes and Oaths must faile;
For where Teares cannot, nothing can prevaile.
Compare the love of faire Queene Guendolin
With mine, and thou shalt see how she doth love thee:
I love thee for thy qualities divine,
But Shee doth Love another Swaine above thee:
I love thee for thy gifts, She for hir pleasure;
I for thy Vertue, She for Beauties treasure.
And alwaies (I am sure) it cannot last,
But sometime Nature will denie those dimples:
Insteed of Beautie (when thy Blossom's past)
Thy face will be deformed, full of wrinckles:
Then She that lov'd thee for thy Beauties sake,
When Age drawes on, thy love will soone forsake.
But I that lov'd thee for thy gifts divine,
In the December of thy Beauties waning,
Will still admire (with joy) those lovely eine,
That now behold me with their beauties baning:
Though Januarie will never come againe,
Yet Aprill yeres will come in showers of raine.
When will my May come, that I may embrace thee?
When will the hower be of my soules joying?
Why dost thou seeke in mirth still to disgrace mee?
Whose mirth's my health, whose griefe's my harts annoying.
Thy bane my bale, thy blisse my blessednes,
Thy ill my hell, thy weale my welfare is.
Thus doo I honour thee that love thee so,
And love thee so, that so doo honour thee,
Much more than anie mortall man doth know,
Or can discerne by Love or Jealozie:
But if that thou disdainst my loving ever;
Oh happie I, if I had loved never.
THE SECOND DAYES LAMENTATION OF THE AFFECTIONATE SHEPHEARD.
Next Morning when the golden Sunne was risen,
And new had bid good morrow to the Mountaines;
When Night her silver light had lockt in prison,
Which gave a glimmering on the christall Fountaines:
Then ended sleepe: and then my cares began,
Ev'n with the uprising of the silver Swan.
O glorious Sunne quoth I, (viewing the Sunne)
That lightenst everie thing but me alone:
Why is my Summer season almost done?
My Spring-time past, and Ages Autumne gone?
My Harvest's come, and yet I reapt no corne:
My love is great, and yet I am forlorne.
Witnes these watrie eyes my sad lament,
(Receaving cisternes of my ceaseles teares)
Witnes my bleeding hart my soules intent,
Witnes the weight distressed Daphnis beares:
Sweet love, come ease me of thy burthens paine;
Or els I die, or else my hart is slaine.
And thou love-scorning Boy, cruell, unkinde;
Oh let me once againe intreat some pittie:
May be thou wilt relent thy marble minde,
And lend thine eares unto my dolefull Dittie:
Oh pittie him, that pittie craves so sweetly;
Or else thou shalt be never named meekly.
If thou wilt love me, thou shalt be my Boy,
My sweet Delight, the Comfort of my minde,
My Love, my Dove, my Sollace, and my Joy;
But if I can no grace nor mercie finde,
Ile goe to Caucasus to ease my smart,
And let a Vulture gnaw upon my hart.
Yet if thou wilt but show me one kinde looke,
(A small reward for my so great affection)
Ile grave thy name in Beauties golden Booke,
And shrowd thee under Hellicons protection;
Making the Muses chaunt thy lovely prayse:
(For they delight in Shepheards lowly layes.)
And when th' art wearie of thy keeping Sheepe
Upon a lovely Downe, (to please thy minde)
Ile give thee fine ruffe-footed Doves to keepe,
And pretie Pidgeons of another kinde:
A Robbin-red-brest shall thy Minstrell bee,
Chirping thee sweet, and pleasant Melodie.
Or if thou wilt goe shoote at little Birds
With bow and boult, (the Thrustle-cocke and Sparrow)
Such as our Countrey hedges can afford's;
I have a fine bowe, and an yvorie arrow:
And if thou misse, yet meate thou shalt [not] lacke,
Ile hang a bag and bottle at thy backe.
Wilt thou set springes in a frostie Night,
To catch the long-billd Woodcocke and the Snype?
(By the bright glimmering of the Starrie light)
The Partridge, Phaesant, or the greedie Grype?
Ile lend thee Lyme-twigs, and fine sparrow calls,
Wherewith the Fowler silly Birds inthralls.
Or in a mystie morning if thou wilt
Make pit-falls for the Larke and Pheldifare;
Thy prop and sweake shall be both over-guilt:
With Cyparissus selfe thou shalt compare
For gins and wyles, the Oozels to beguile;
Whilst thou under a bush shalt sit and smile.
Or with Hare-pypes (set in a muset hole)
Wilt thou deceave the deep-earth-delving Coney?
Or wilt thou in a yellow Boxen bole,
Taste with a woodden splent the sweet lythe honey?
Clusters of crimson Grapes Ile pull thee downe;
And with Vine-leaves make thee a lovely Crowne.
Or wilt thou drinke a cup of new-made Wine
Froathing at top, mixt with a dish of Creame;
And Straw-berries, or Bil-berries in their prime,
Bath'd in a melting Sugar-Candie streame:
Bunnell and Perry I have for thee (alone)
When Vynes are dead, and all the Grapes are gone.
I have a pleasant noted Nightingale,
(That sings as sweetly as the silver Swan)
Kept in a Cage of bone; as white as Whale,
Which I with singing of Philemon wan:
Her shalt thou have, and all I have beside;
If thou wilt be my Boy, or else my Bride.
Then will I lay out all my Lardarie
(Of Cheese, of Cracknells, Curds and Clowted-creame)
Before thy male-content ill-pleasing eye:
But why doo I of such great follies dreame?
Alas, he will not see my simple Coate;
For all my speckled Lambe, nor milk-white Goate.
Against my Birth-day thou shalt be my guest:
Weele have Greene-cheeses and fine Silly-bubs;
And thou shalt be the chiefe of all my feast.
And I will give thee two fine pretie Cubs,
With two yong Whelps, to make thee sport withall,
A golden Racket, and a Tennis-ball.
A guilded Nutmeg, and a race of Ginger,
A silken Girdle, and a drawn-worke Band,
Cuffs for thy wrists, a gold Ring for thy finger,
And sweet Rose-water for thy Lilly-white hand,
A Purse of silke, bespangd with spots of gold,
As brave a one as ere thou didst behold.
A paire of Knives, a green Hat and a Feather,
New Gloves to put upon thy milk-white hand
Ile give thee, for to keep thee from the weather;
With Phoenix feathers shall thy Face be fand,
Cooling those Cheekes, that being cool'd wexe red,
Like Lillyes in a bed of Roses shed.
Why doo thy Corall lips disdaine to kisse,
And sucke that Sweete, which manie have desired?
That Baulme my Bane, that meanes would mend my misse:
Oh let me then with thy sweete Lips b' inspired;
When thy Lips touch my Lips, my Lips will turne
To Corall too, and being cold yce will burne.
Why should thy sweete Love-locke hang dangling downe,
Kissing thy girdle-steed with falling pride?
Although thy Skin be white, thy haire is browne:
Oh let not then thy haire thy beautie hide;
Cut off thy Locke, and sell it for gold wier:
(The purest gold is tryde in hottest fier).
Faire-long-haire-wearing Absolon was kild,
Because he wore it in a braverie:
So that which gracde his Beautie, Beautie spild,
Making him subject to vile slaverie,
In being hangd: a death for him too good,
That sought his owne shame, and his Fathers blood.
Againe, we read of old King Priamus,
(The haplesse syre of valiant Hector slaine)
That his haire was so long and odious
In youth, that in his age it bred his paine:
For if his haire had not been halfe so long,
His life had been, and he had had no wrong.
For when his stately Citie was destroyd
(That Monument of great Antiquitie)
When his poore hart (with griefe and sorrow cloyd)
Fled to his Wife (last hope in miserie;)
Pyrrhus (more hard than Adamantine rockes)
Held him and halde him by his aged lockes.
These two examples by the way I show,
To prove th' indecencie of mens long haire:
Though I could tell thee of a thousand moe,
Let these suffice for thee (my lovely Faire)
Whose eye's my starre; whose smiling is my Sunne;
Whose love did ende before my joys begunne.
Fond Love is blinde, and so art thou (my Deare)
For thou seest not my Love, and great desart;
Blinde Love is fond, and so thou cost appeare;
For fond, and blinde, thou greevst my greeving hart:
Be thou fond-blinde, blinde-fond, or one, or all;
Thou art my Love, and I must be thy thrall.
Oh lend thine yvorie fore-head for Loves Booke,
Thine eyes for candles to behold the same;
That when dim-sighted ones therein shall looke
They may discerne that proud disdainefull Dame;
Yet claspe that Booke, and shut that Cazement light;
Lest th' one obscurde, the other shine too bright.
Sell thy sweet breath to th' daintie Musk-ball-makers;
Yet sell it so as thou mayst soone redeeme it:
Let others of thy beauty be partakers;
Els none but Daphnis will so well esteeme it:
For what is Beauty except it be well knowne?
And how can it be knowne, except first showne?
Learne of the Gentlewomen of this Age,
That set their Beauties to the open view,
Making Disdaine their Lord, true Love their Page;
A Custome Zeale doth hate, Desert doth rue:
Learne to looke red, anon waxe pale and wan;
Making a mocke of Love, a scorne of man.
A candle light, and cover'd with a vaile,
Doth no man good, because it gives no light;
So Beauty of her beauty seemes to faile,
When being not scene it cannot shine so bright.
Then show thy selfe and know thy selfe withall,
Lest climing high thou catch too great a fall.
Oh foule Eclipser of that fayre sun-shine,
Which is intitled Beauty in the best;
Making that mortall, which is els divine;
That staines the fayre which Womens steeme not least:
Get thee to Hell againe (from whence thou art)
And leave the Center of a Womans hart.
Ah be not staind (sweet Boy) with this vilde spot,
Indulgence Daughter, Mother of mischaunce;
A blemish that doth every beauty blot;
That makes them loath'd, but never doth advaunce
Her Clyents, fautors, friends; or them that love her;
And hates them most of all, that most reprove her.
Remember Age and thou canst not be prowd,
For age puls downe the pride of every man;
In youthfull yeares by Nature tis allowde
To have selfe-will, doo Nurture what she can;
Nature and Nurture once together met,
The Soule and shape in decent order set.
Pride looks aloft, still staring on the starres,
Humility looks lowly on the ground;
Th' one menaceth the Gods with civill warres,
The other toyles till he have Vertue found:
His thoughts are humble, not aspiring hye;
But Pride looks haughtily with scornefull eye.
Humillity is clad in modest weedes,
But Pride is brave and glorious to the show;
Humillity his friends with kindnes feedes,
But Pride his friends (in neede) will never know:
Supplying not their wants, but them disdaining;
Whilst they to pitty never neede complayning.
Humillity in misery is reliev'd,
But Pride in neede of no man is regarded;
Pitty and Mercy weepe to see him griev'd
That in distresse had them so well rewarded:
But Pride is scornd, contemnd, disdaind, derided,
Whilst Humblenes of all things is provided.
Oh then be humble, gentle, meeke, and milde;
So shalt thou be of every mouth commended;
Be not disdainfull, cruell, proud, (sweet childe),
So shalt thou be of no man much condemned;
Care not for them that Vertue doo despise;
Vertue is loathde of fooles; lovde of the wise.
O faire Boy trust not to thy Beauties wings,
They cannot carry thee above the Sunne:
Beauty and wealth are transitory things,
(For all must ende that ever was begunne)
But Fame and Vertue never shall decay;
For Fame is toombles, Vertue lives for aye.
The snow is white, and yet the pepper's blacke,
The one is bought, the other is contemned:
Pibbles we have, but store of Jeat we lacke;
So white comparde to blacke is much condemned:
We doo not praise the Swanne because shees white,
But for she doth in Musique much delite.
And yet the silver-noted Nightingale,
Though she be not so white is more esteemed;
Sturgion is dun of hew, white is the Whale,
Yet for the daintier Dish the first is deemed;
What thing is whiter than the milke-bred Lilly?
Thou knowes it not for naught, what man so silly?
Yea what more noysomer unto the smell
Than Lillies are? what's sweeter than the Sage?
Yet for pure white the Lilly beares the Bell
Till it be faded through decaying Age;
House-Doves are white, and Oozels Blacke-birds bee;
Yet what a difference in the taste, we see?
Compare the Cow and Calfe, with Ewe and Lambe;
Rough hayrie Hydes, with softest downy Fell;
Hecfar and Bull, with Weather and with Ramme,
And you shall see how far they doo excell;
White Kine with blacke, blacke Coney-skins with gray,
Kine, nesh and strong; skin, deare and cheape alway.
The whitest silver is not alwaies best,
Lead, Tynne, and Pewter are of base esteeme;
The yellow burnisht gold, that comes from th' East,
And West (of late invented), may beseeme
The worlds ritch Treasury, or Mydas eye;
(The Ritch mans God, poore mans felicitie.)
Bugle and Jeat, with snow and Alablaster
I will compare: White Dammasin with blacke;
Bullas and wheaton Plumbs, (to a good Taster,)
The ripe red Cherries have the sweetest smacke;
When they be greene and young, th' are sowre and naught;
But being ripe, with eagerness th' are baught.
Compare the Wyld-cat to the brownish Beaver,
Running for life, with hounds pursued sore;
When Hunts-men of her pretious Stones bereave her,
(Which with her teeth sh' had bitten off before):
Restoratives, and costly curious Felts
Are made of them, and rich imbroydred Belts.
To what use serves a peece of crimbling Chalke?
The Agget stone is white, yet good for nothing:
Fie, fie, I am asham'd to heare thee talke;
Be not so much of thine owne Image doating:
So faire Narcissus lost his love and life.
(Beautie is often with itselfe at strife).
Right Diamonds are of a russet hieu,
The brightsome Carbuncles are red to see too,
The Saphyre stone is of a watchet blue,
(To this thou canst not chuse but soone agree too):
Pearles are not white but gray, Rubies are red:
In praise of Blacke, what can be better sed?
For if we doo consider of each mortall thing
That flyes in welkin, or in waters swims,
How everie thing increaseth with the Spring,
And how the blacker still the brighter dims:
We cannot chuse, but needs we must confesse,
Sable excels milk-white in more or lesse.
As for example, in the christall cleare
Of a sweete streame, or pleasant running River,
Where thousand formes of fishes will appeare,
(Whose names to thee I cannot now deliver:)
The blacker still the brighter have disgrac'd,
For pleasant profit, and delicious taste.
Salmon and Trout are of a ruddie colour,
Whiting and Dare is of a milk-white hiew:
Nature by them (perhaps) is made the fuller,
Little they nourish, be they old or new:
Carp, Loach, Tench, Eeles (though black and bred in mud)
Delight the tooth with taste, and breed good blud.
Innumerable be the kindes, if I could name them;
But I a Shepheard, and no Fisher am:
Little it skills whether I praise or blame them,
I onely meddle with my Ew and Lamb:
Yet this I say, that blacke the better is,
In birds, beasts, frute, stones, flowres, herbs, mettals, fish.
And last of all, in blacke there doth appeare
Such qualities, as not in yvorie;
Black cannot blush for shame, looke pale for fear,
Scorning to weare another livorie:
Blacke is the badge of sober Modestie,
The wonted weare of ancient Gravetie.
The learned Sisters sute themselves in blacke,
Learning abandons white, and lighter hues:
Pleasure and Pride light colours never lacke;
But true Religion doth such Toyes refuse:
Vertue and Gravity are sisters growne,
Since blacke by both, and both by blacke are knowne.
White is the colour of each paltry Miller,
White is the Ensigne of each comman Woman;
White, is white Vertues for blacke Vyces Piller;
White makes proud fooles inferiour unto no man:
White, is the white of Body, blacke of Minde,
(Vertue we seldome in white Habit finde.)
Oh then be not so proud because th' art fayre,
Vertue is onely the ritch gift of God:
Let not selfe-pride thy vertues name impayre,
Beate not greene youth with sharpe Repentance Rod:
(A Fiend, a Monster, and mishapen Divel;
Vertues foe, Vyces friend, the roote of evill).
Apply thy minde to be a vertuous man,
Avoyd ill company (the spoyle of youth;)
To follow Vertues Lore doo what thou can,
(Whereby great profit unto thee ensuth:)
Reade Bookes, hate Ignorance; (the Foe to Art,
The Damme of Errour, Envy of the hart).
Serve Jove (upon thy knees) both day and night,
Adore his Name above all things on Earth:
So shall thy vowes be gracious in his sight,
So little Babes are blessed in their Birth:
Thinke on no worldly woe, lament thy sin;
(For lesser cease, when greater griefes begin).
Sweare no vaine oathes; heare much, but little say;
Speake ill of no man, tend thine owne affaires,
Bridle thy wrath, thine angrie mood delay;
(So shall thy minde be seldome cloyd with cares:)
Be milde and gentle in thy speech to all,
Refuse no honest gaine when it doth fall.
Be not beguild with words, prove not ungratefull,
Releeve thy Neighbour in his greatest need,
Commit no action that to all is hatefull,
Their want with welth, the poore with plentie feed:
Twit no man in the teeth with what th' hast done;
Remember flesh is fraile, and hatred shunne.
Leave wicked things, which Men to mischiefe move,
(Least crosse mis-hap may thee in danger bring,)
Crave no preferment of thy heavenly Jove,
Nor anie honor of thy earthly King:
Boast not thy selfe before th' Almighties sight,
(Who knowes thy hart, and anie wicked wight).
Be not offensive to the peoples eye,
See that thy praiers harts true zeale affords,
Scorne not a man that's falne in miserie,
Esteeme no tatling tales, nor babling words;
That reason is exiled alwaies thinke,
When as a drunkard rayles amidst his drinke.
Use not thy lovely lips to loathsome lyes,
By craftie meanes increase no worldly wealth;
Strive not with mightie Men (whose fortune flies)
With temp'rate diet nourish wholesome health:
Place well thy words, leave not thy frend for gold;
First trie, then trust; in ventring be not bold.
In Pan repose thy trust; extoll his praise
(That never shall decay, but ever lives):
Honor thy Parents (to prolong thy dayes),
Let not thy left hand know what right hand gives:
From needie men turn not thy face away,
(Though Charitie be now yclad in clay).
Heare Shepheards oft (thereby great wisdome growes),
With good advice a sober answere make:
Be not remoov'd with every winde that blowes,
(That course doo onely sinfull sinners take).
Thy talke will shew thy fame or els thy shame;
(A pratling tongue doth often purchase blame.)
Obtaine a faithfull frend that will not faile thee,
Thinke on thy Mothers paine in her child-bearing,
Make no debate, least quickly thou bewaile thee,
Visit the sicke with comfortable chearing:
Pittie the prisner, helpe the fatherlesse,
Revenge the Widdowes wrongs in her distresse.
Thinke on thy grave, remember still thy end,
Let not thy winding-sheete be staind with guilt,
Trust not a fained reconciled frend,
More than an open foe (that blood hath spilt)
(Who tutcheth pitch, with pitch shalbe defiled)
Be not with wanton companie beguiled.
Take not a flattring woman to thy wife,
A shameles creature, full of wanton words,
(Whose bad, thy good; whose lust will end thy life,
Cutting thy hart with sharpe two edged swords:)
Cast not thy minde on her whose lookes allure,
But she that shines in Truth and Vertue pure.
Praise not thy selfe, let other men commend thee;
Beare not a flattring tongue to glaver anie,
Let Parents due correction not offend thee:
Rob not thy neighbor, seeke the love of manie;
Hate not to heare good Counsell given thee,
Lay not thy money unto Usurie.
Restraine thy steps from too much libertie,
Fulfill not th' envious mans malitious minde;
Embrace thy Wife, live not in lecherie;
Content thyselfe with what Fates have assignde:
Be rul'd by Reason, Warning dangers save;
True Age is reverend worship to thy grave.
Be patient in extreame Adversitie,
(Mans chiefest credit growes by dooing well,)
Be not high-minded in Prosperitie;
Falshood abhorre, nor lying fable tell.
Give not thy selfe to Sloth (the sinke of Shame,
The moath of Time, the enemie to Fame).
This leare I learned of a Bel-dame Trot,
(When I was yong and wylde as now thou art):
But her good counsell I regarded not,
I markt it with my eares, not with my hart:
But now I finde it too-too true (my Sonne)
When my Age-withered Spring is almost done.
Behold my gray head, full of silver haires,
My wrinkled skin, deepe furrowes in my face:
Cares bring Old-Age, Old-Age increaseth cares;
My Time is come, and I have run my Race:
Winter hath snow'd upon my hoarie head,
And with my Winter all my joys are dead.
And thou love-hating Boy, (whom once I loved)
Farewell, a thousand-thousand times farewell;
My Teares the Marble Stones to ruth have moved;
My sad Complaints the babling Ecchoes tell:
And yet thou wouldst take no compassion on mee,
Scorning that crosse which Love hath laid upon mee.
The hardest steele with fier doth mend his misse,
Marble is mollifyde with drops of Raine;
But thou (more hard than Steele or Marble is)
Doost scorne my Teares, and my true Love disdaine;
Which for thy sake shall everlasting bee,
Wrote in the Annalls of Eternitie.
By this, the Night (with darknes over-spred)
Had drawne the curtaines of her cole-blacke bed;
And Cynthia muffling her face with a clowd,
(Lest all the world of her should be too prowd)
Had taken Conge of the sable Night,
(That wanting her cannot be halfe so bright;)
When I poore forlorne man and outcast creature
(Despairing of my Love, despisde of Beautie)
Grew male-content, scorning his lovely feature,
That had disdaind my ever-zealous dutie:
I hy'd me homeward by the Moone-shine light;
Forswearing Love, and all his fond delight.