1610 ca.
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Upon my Brother, Mr. G. F. his Book entituled Christs Victorie and Triumph.

The Purple Island, or the Isle of Man: together with Piscatorie Eclogs and other Poeticall Miscellanies. By P. F.

Rev. Phineas Fletcher


Three irregular Spenserians (abababcC) in which Phineas Fletcher lauds his brother's choice of a sacred subject for his poem: "But thou, (most neare, most deare) in this of thine | Hast prov'd the Muses not to Venus bound; | Such as thy matter, such thy Muse divine: | Or thou such grace with Mercie's self hast found, | That she her self deignes in thy leaves to shine." Christs Victorie was published in 1610.



Fond lads, that spend so fast your posting time,
(Too posting time, that spends your time as fast)
To chant light toyes, or frame some wanton rhyme,
Where idle boyes may glut their lustfull taste;
Or else with praise to clothe some fleshly slime
With virgin roses, and fair lilies chaste:
While itching blouds, and youthful eares adore it;
But wiser men, and once your selves will most abhorre it.

But thou, (most neare, most deare) in this of thine
Hast prov'd the Muses not to Venus bound;
Such as thy matter, such thy Muse divine:
Or thou such grace with Mercie's self hast found,
That she her self deignes in thy leaves to shine;
Or stoll'n from heav'n, thou brought'st this verse to ground,
Which frights the nummed soul with fearfull thunder,
And soon with honeyed dews thawes it 'twixt joy and wonder.

Then do not thou malicious tongues esteem;
(The glasse, through which an envious eye doth gaze,
Can eas'ly make a mole-hill mountain seem)
His praise dispraises; his dispraises praise;
Enough, if best men best thy labours deem,
And to the highest pitch thy merit raise;
While all the Muses to thy song decree
Victorious Triumph, Triumphant Victorie.

[pp. 82-83]