1615
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Penardo and Laissa. Caput. V.

The First booke of the famous Historye of Penardo and Laissa other ways callid the Warres, of Love and Ambitione. Doone in Heroik Verse, by Patrik Gordon.

Patrick Gordon


In Thessaly dwells the redoubtable Prince Penardo, son of Andromadan and grandson of the great Jason. The Achaian ambassadors arrive at the palace and are entertained for three days amidst splendid tapestries displaying mythological scenes. They explain how the heir and only child of Achaia had been slain by Sigismund; the king of Thessaly vows that he will avenge them.



ARGUMENT.
Peenardo Prince of Thessalye
Is heir unto yow showne
Whoes buried deids so long in grave
Shall to the world be knowne
Achaias great Embassadour
Requyrs Thessaliane ayde
The wich is granted and anone
For warre provisione made.

Into the mightie land of Thessalye
Their regn'd a King that Grodane heght to name
By mightie force he conquerd Arabie
Throw Greciane land so famous grew his fame
Earthes terrour, Europs tour, and Africks woe
Bulwark of freends, and buriell of his foe.

This Grodane had to wyfe a noble Dame
That Sister wes unto the Spanishe King
Whoes lyfe governd with such a spotles name
Old fame throw emptie aer this song did sing;
The yee happie Prince of Jasons lyne that regn's
And to the world an other Jason breng's.

Those tuo wer lov'd with such a lust regarid
She lov'd, he feird, she praisd, and he renound
The famous citie Eregon he reird
And built the princelie Palace Pitemuond
And their his royall court he intertain'd,
Million's of knights and Ladyes their remaind.

He had no children but a Sone alone
Whoes beautie and proportione of his face
Bewrayd his royall Progenie anone
His persone Princelye and his comelie grace
Most rair, most wyse, most valorous, most fair
Most lov'd, most loath'd, still croc'd, with Fortuns snair.

Penardo cald the object of disdain
The skorne of love, the monument of lothe
The mirrour of mischeif, the map of paine,
The marck of daunger, and the mold of wrath
The Seat of sorrow, and the tombe of care
The winges of wrack, the Burtio of dispair.

Yet was he well traind up in featt's of armes
Tilt's, turnayes, and all war-lyk exercise
Whoes brave undanted Spright espyes no harmes
Whoes mightie force his fame doeth eternize
So lov'd of all, and yet that all so feird him
That Heavne, and Earth, and Hell, to much admird him.

And had his grand-Syre (Jason valorous)
Bein now alyve he hade not cron'd the Maine
For that his dangling tresses pretious
Surmunts the goldin fleece whiche he did gaine
His looks, his gesture, and his countenance
Would chaistest Phoebe move to dalliance

Dame Nature followed him with sad laments
Compleining of her treasurs emptie coffers
Proportioune beautie vertues excrements
Was left to her and cheirfullie she offers
To quyt all those if he would prove so kynd
To runder back perfections of the mynd

And yet sumtyme she (stairing' in his face)
Wold seeme to love him wowing him with swyll's
And proud of this her handie work whoes grace
She swoir the glorye of the gods beguyl's
And other whills complaining in a rage
She lak'd materiall's for ensueing age.

Which true did prove for Nature was undone
The earth was lost, and mankynd was forlorne
Th' ensewing ages monster's prov'd too soone
Some reasone wants some but proportione borne
Some dum, some deaf, some blind, some leam'd ar seene
Some sensles, witles, strenghtles, hartles bein.

Now whill the Earthe was rap't with admiratione
Of this fair youthe so muche admeir'd of all
(One contrarie remov'd) the confirmatione
He seem'd to have of all that grace men call
He that in loves despight him self had showen
Yet lov'd at last and loath'd was overthrowen,

For who can shunn his fortune or his fate
All to loves live tho' lyfe wer but a night
Cear, traveel woe, with pleasure does debait
Greif sorow, paine, with pastyme, joy, delight.
The truest happines one earthe remaine
Wheir croce is mixt with confort, joy with paine.

But whil fair fame (this royall court to show)
Throuw spatious Earthe and oceane took her flight
Adventrous Knight's hade (many year's ag'oe)
Sleep't in dark silence of eternall night
Desyre of honor (to the worlds vew)
Calls furthe one Youth, deip Danger to persue,

Penardo as ane Gallant would obey
Whoes brave heroick spright surpast so farre
All youths of Greece that he would oft essay
The most and best approved Knight's of warre
When tuo at once he caus'd for to effront him
They could not find the meins for to dismont him

Yet whill he sleip't at home in silent pace
Th' Embassadours come to the court in haist
Frome out Achaia whom it pleasd his grace
To entertaine with many royall feast
Who muche admeird the great magnifience
Of his fair court and of his excellence

Thrie dayes wer spent in feasting or repast
When they desyr'd for to be hard of all
The King and counsell being set at last
They wer convay'd unto a princelie hall
Yea to unfold that costlie court so fyne
Should pas the might of such a Muse as myne.

The pillers wer of purest yvorie fram'd
With pearle and pretious stone in gold embost
Whoes glistring beam's continuall light inflamd
That sable Night her entrance their had lost
The stones to wall's their glances consecrat's
Which ritchest mantles still reverberat's

Whoes majeste was staitlie to behold
For round about the walls the tapestrie
Was goodlie arace wrought with Indiane gold
With purple silk and sylver gloriouslie
So vivelie wrought unto the humane eye
Majestick purtreats lyvelie seemd to be,

Their Cupid painted in his glistring pryd
His eyes wer shut, yet in his crewell fist
An goldin bow and arrowes did abyd
Wheir with he shot at randone when he list
He bends, he draw's, he shoots no shaft in vaine
He hitt's the Hart, and yet no marks remaine.

Ther Jove and their the Thebane Semale
Their jealous Juno lyke her Nurse appeirs
And caus'd her seik that Jove in majestie
Wold come with thundring darts and lightning fyr's
Their might you sie when he performd ye same
Her birne in heavenlie fyre and schoarcking flamme

Their Leucothea, their was Phoebus bright
In sheape of old Eurimine her mother
Their Orchamus her father tacks her streght,
And eard's her quick (til Phoebus coming hither)
Unto a lamp a starre a flamming light
He chang'd her for to chace from thence ye night

Ther Mars and Venus at ther dallying sports
Their Vulcans artificiall yrone nett
Wherin he wrapt these lovers, their resorts
Feir Danaes Sone whome Jove did erst beget
Who cutts Medusa's heid and their the fontane
Wheir he had chang'd King Athlas in a montan.

Their also feghts he with the monster wyld
That persecutes the fair Andronad ever
Their Cephey and Cassiope bewayld
Their daughters hap, and yet could help her never
Whom thundring Jove injustlie their detaind
She weip't, she murnt, she sigh't, she pray'd, she plan'd

All these yow might have sein so perfectlie
That nothing els but vitall breath they wanted
Whil as they seem'd to lurk so prively
Sum heir sum their in pairs together hanted
They seemd to blushe when curious eyes did sie them
And shrow'd their yvorie limms in fowlds to flie them

So Cynthia does shrood her self frome sight
Of wearie Travelers that wandring strayes
Wrapt up in darkest cloud's of silent night
Yet through thin clouds oft shoots out sylver rayes
So seem'd they in those fowlds, to creip un knowne
Yet shew them self unwilling to be showen.

Or as the stream's of crooked wynding brooks
Now heighe then low, now ryse, then falls againe
In darkest corners holes and privie crooks
Will steall unseene yet can not skaip the maine
Each tumbling in hudge heap's their homage does
Compleaning on the Earths unkynd refuse

Evne so those mantles glorious riche and rair
If strurd will alter chainge and turne in vaine
Trembling and wafting mov'd whith shaples aer
Heir low their heighe their low heir hyeghe again
Whiche maks sum portrats show and sum reteir
Sum heighe sum low and sum unwar's appeir

Those strangers stoode amazed at that sight
The King to brek their silence low did move him
Upon a bench of gold that grave great light
A Pale lyk heavens-starrd'd canoby above him
The cheifest bow'd to ground and then began
To show the King (who heght Andromadan.)

O thouw most mightie Prince of Jasons race
Thou skourge of Paganes and of Persians pryd
O thow who did by mightie strength deface
Arabia foelix and the spoyls devyd
Amongst the Souldours with a princelie mynd
Thy servants come from far, thy help to fynd

Know that we ar Achaian's mightie Prince
Of antient Greciane bloode we ar discendit
Against the Paganes we have made defence
Our realme lost our royall blood is endit
Our King our countray kingdome croune and all
Arrest and forc'd before our Foes to fall

By Sigismund great King of Datia
Of Transylvania and Moldavia Prince
Of Servia and of Valachia
He holds the septure and the governance
With armies great to mak his valour knowne
Our contrey, tours, and tounes has overthrowne

This was the caus, Ill hap our Prince let out
One day the mont Parnassus for to vew
Well arm'd he was both loftie strong and stout
Well favord fair and of a heavenly hew
Our King of Children had no more at all
Ther was he lost, and their our strength did fall.

For their he chanc'd to vew a sacred Muse
Enamourd thus he fondlie fell in love
Presing her devyne deitie to abus
Whose mynd from chaist desyrs he could not move
By chance a Knight arryv'd and sought withall
His paine, his greif, his lose, his death, his fall

And thus they both in combat fought a space
Untill ther fatall howre approched neir
And then they both wer slaine into that place
Evne then began our woe, our wrack our care
This Knight was Prince of Datia and was Sone
To Sigismund for him this warre begane,

When he had done in silence still he stoode
Abyding answer from the King who sayde
(In greattest ire) he wold revenge their bloode
And willinglie wold lend his freindlie ayde
Live happie Prince (sayd thay) in whoes sweitt eyes
Wrath, terrour, dreid, revenge, and glorie lyes.

[sigs C8v-D5]

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