Brom. Some of his own, I'm sure.

I must confess
Their outside look'd something like yours indeed;
But then the taste more relish'd of eternity,
The same with nectar

Your Grace is welcome
To anything I have. Nay, gentlemen (to the others),
Pray do not you spare neither.

Joc. What say these mighty peers, great Oberon?

Dor. They cannot speak this language, but in ours
They thank you; and they say they will have none.

Elves. Tititàti, Tititàti.
Joc. What say they now?

They do request you now
To grant them leave to dance a fairy ring
About your servant, and for his offence
Pinch him. Do you, the while, command the traitor
Not dare to stir, nor once presume to mutter.

Joc. Traitor, for so Prince Oberon deigns to call thee
Stir not, nor mutter.

To be thus abus'd!
Joc. Ha! mutterest thou ?

I have deserv'd bette:
Joc. Still mutterest thou ?

I see I must endure it.
Joc. Yet mutterest thou ? Now, noble lords, begin,
When it shall please your honors.

Our noble friend permits Tititatèe ;
Do you not, sir?

How should I say I do?
Dor. Tititatèe.

Tititatèe, my noble lords."

(Fairies dance about BROMIUS, and pinch and scratch him in chorus )

Quoniam per te violamur,
Ungues hic experiamur:
Statim dices tibi datam
Cutem valde variatam.

[Since by thee comes profanation
Taste thee, lo! excoriation:
Thou shalt own, that in a twinkling
Thou hast got a pretty crinkling.)

Joc. Tititàti to your lordship for this excellent music.
Brom. (aside) This 'tis to have a coxcomb for one's master.
Joc. Still mutterest thou?

(DORYLAs descends from the tree; Jocastus falls on his knees.)
Dor. Arise up, Sir Jocastus, our dear knight.
Now hang the hallow'd bell about his neck;
We call it a mellisonant tingle-tangle,
(Aside) (A sheep-bell stolen from his own fat wether)
The ensign of his knighthood. Sir Jocastus,
We call to mind we promis'd you long since
The President of our Dances' place; we are now
Pleas'd to confirm it on you. Give him there
His staff of dignity.

Your Grace is pleas'd
To honor your poor liegeman.


Joc. Farewell unto your Grace and eke to you. Tititatèe, my noble lords; farewell.

[Erit Dor. Tititatèe,-my noble fool; farewell.

Now be gone.

So we are clean got off. Come, noble Peers
Of Faery, come attend our Royal Grace;
Let's go and share our fruits with our Queen Mab,
And the other dairy-maids ; where of this theme
We will discourse amidst our cakes and cream.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]


1“ Nos beata Fauni proles,&c.—There is something very charming in these Latin rhymes. They make one wish (in spite of the danger of being charged with a Gothic taste) that Horace and Catullus,-say rather Ovid, -had written in rhyme as well as blank verse, and so given us a fairy music with some of his words, beyond the power of his lutes and lyres to hand down.

;" Immortal thief, come down,” &c.—It must be confessed that Bromius talks too well for a servant. So, for that matter, does his master, for so foolish a country-gentleman. But we are to recol. lect that the play is a pastoral with an Arcadian licence.

3Tititatèe, my noble lords,&c.—Molière himself would have enjoyed this extravagance. It is indeed quite in his manner.

"" Inter poma, lac, et vinum.”-A line that shuts up the scene in “measureless content." Thanks be to the witty scholar, Thomas Randolph, for an addition to the stock of one's pleasant fancies.


BORN, 1609—DIED, 1641.

Sir John SUCKLING, son of the Comptroller of the Household to Charles the First, was so true a wit, and hit so delightful a point between the sentiment of the age of Elizabeth and the gallantry of the Stuarts, that it is provoking to be unable to give some of his best pieces at all in a publication like the present, and only one or two short ones without mutilation. He comes among a herd of scented fops with careless natural grace, and an odor of morning flowers upon him. You know not which would have been most delighted with his compliments, the dairy.maid or the duchess. He was thrown too early upon a town life; otherwise a serious passion for some estimable woman, which (to judge from his graver poetry) he was very capable of entertaining, might have been the salvation of him. As it was, he died early, and, it is said, not happily; but this may have been the report of envy or party-spirit; for he was a great loyalist. It is probable, however, that he excelled less as a partizan than as a poet and a man of fashion. He is said to have given a supper to the ladies of his acquaintance, the last course of which consisted of milli. nery and trinkets. The great Nelson's mother was a Suckling of the same stock, in Norfolk.

Steele, in the Tatler (No. 40), not undeservedly quotes a pas. sage from Suckling, side by side with one about Eve from Mil. ton. It is in his tragedy of Brennoralt, where a lover is looking on his sleeping mistress :

“Her face is like the milky way i' the sky,

A meeting of gentle lights without a name

Feelings like these enabled his fair friends to put up with such pleasant contradictions to sentiment as the following:

Out upon it, I have lov'd

Three whole days together ;
And am like to love three more,

If it prove fair weather.
Time shall moult away his wings,

Ere he shall discover
In the whole wide world again

Such a constant lover.
But the spite on’t is, no praise

Is due at all to me;
Love with me had made no stays,

Had it any been but she.
Had it any been but she,

And that very face,
There had been at least ere this

A dozen in her place.' A aozen in her place.”—This song is the perfection of easy, witty, light yet substantial writing. There is no straining after thoughts or images, and not a word out of its place, or more words than there ought to be, unless we except the concluding verse of the third stanza; and this seems to overrun its bounds with a special propriety,besides the grace of its repetition in the stanza following. Here follows another short piece, which can also be given entire. The last line has a vivacity and novelty delightfully unexpected; but I am afraid it was suggested by a similar turn in one of our old dramatists, though I cannot recol. lect which.


Why so pale and wan, fond lover?

Prythee, why so pale ?
Will, when looking well can't move her,

Looking ill prevail ?
Prythee, why so pale?

« ElőzőTovább »