1606
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Monsieur D'Olive. A Comedie.

Monsieur D'Olive. A Comedie, as it was sundrie Times acted by her Majesties Children at the Blacke-Friers. By George Chapman.

George Chapman


Act IV Scene 1 parodies the lament in Spenser's November in Shepheardes Calender.

Charles Lamb: "Of all the English Play-writers, Chapman perhaps approaches nearest to Shakspeare in the descriptive and didactic, in passages which are less purely dramatic. Dramatic Imitation was not his talent. He could not go out of himself, as Shakspeare could shift at pleasure, to inform and animate other existences, but in himself he had an eye to perceive and a soul to embrace all forms" Specimens of Dramatic Poets (1808) in Works, ed. Lucas (1904) 4:83n.

C. H. Timperley: "He was the author of sixteen plays, and is also distinguished as the first translator of Homer into English verse. He has a high philosophical vein in his tragedies, and a very lively humour in his comedies, but wants passion and imagination. His All Fools, Widows' Tears, and Eastward Hoe, are his most esteemed plays of the latter kind; the last contains the first idea of Hogarth's Idle and Industrious Apprentices" Encyclopaedia of Literary and Typographical Anecdote (1842) 2:487.

E. Felix Schelling: "Vendome, a French gentleman returned from his travels, finds that his mistress — that is, the lady to whom he has vowed honorable service after the chivalric ideals of the time — has shut herself up, making day of night and night of day, because of the jealousy which she imagines her husband has of her. Vendome learns too, that his sister, whom he dearly loved, is dead, and that her bereaved husband, his friend, has had her body embalmed, and, distracted with grief, remains beside it. These two false conditions Vendome sets straight with much cleverness, drawing the widower forth to speak to the sister of 'his mistress' in his friend's (Vendome's) behalf, though ultimately it turns out in the widower's own; and enticing the lady to give up her seclusion on a feigned report of her husband's danger from the designs of a lady at court on his affections" Elizabethan Drama (1908) 1:399-400.

Edwin Greenlaw finds a passing allusion to the Faerie Queene in Chapman's Euthymiae Raptus (1609) Wells, Spenser Allusions (1972) 118.



ENTER RHODERIQUE.
Rhod. S'foote (my Lord) al's dasht, your voyage is over-throwne.
D'Ol. What ayles the franticke Tro?
Pac.: Dido is dead, and wrapt in lead.
Di.: O heavy herse!
Pac. Your Lordships honor must waite upon her.
Dig. O scurvy verse! Your Lordship's welcome home: pray let's walke your horse my Lord.

[Sig. G]