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And, us above, noon other rove but a brake, bussh, or twayne;

Whiche sone shulde greve you, I believe, and ye wolde gladly than

That I had to the grenewode goo, alone, a banysshed man."

"Syth I have here ben partynere with you of joy and blysse,

I muste also parte of your woo endure, as reason is;

Yet am I sure of oo plesure, and shortly it is this,

That where ye bee, me semeth, perdè, I coude not fare amysse.

Wythout more speche, I you beseche that we were soon agone;

For in my mynde of all mankynde I love but you alone."

"Yef ye goo thedyr, ye must consider, whan ye have lust to dyne,

Ther shal no mete be fore to gete, nor drinke, bere, ale, ne wine,

Ne shetis clene to lye betwene, made of thred and twyne,

Noon other house but levys and bowes, to kever your hed and myn.

Loo! myn herte swete, this ylle dyet shuld make you pale and wan; Wherfore I to the wood wyl goo, alone, a banysshid man."

"Amonge the wylde dere suche an archier as men say that ye bee

Ne may not fayle of good vitayle, where is so grete plente;

And watir cleere of the ryvere shalbe ful swete to me,

Wyth whiche in hele I shal right wele endure, as ye shal see;

And, er we goo, a bed or twoo I can provide anoon;

For in my mynde of all mankynde I love but you alone."

"Loo! yet before ye must doo more, yf ye wyl goo with me,

As cutte your here up by your ere, your kirtel by the knee,

Wyth bowe in hande, for to withstonde. your enmys, yf nede be,

And this same nyght before daylyght to

woodward wyl I flee;

And if ye wyl all this fulfylle, doo it

shortely as ye can;

Than ye shal say, another day, that be my wyked dede

Ye were betrayed; wherfore, good maide, the best red that I can,

Ellis wil I to the grenewode goo, alone, Is that I too the grenewode goo, alone, a

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way of company.

banysshed man."

"Whatsoever befalle, I never shal of this thing you upbraid;

But yf ye goo and leve me so, than have ye me betraied.

Remembre you wele how that ye dele, for yf ye, as ye sayde,

Be so unkynde to leve behynde your love, the Notbrowne Maide,

Trust me truly that I shal dey sone after ye be gone;

For in my mynde of all mankynde I love but you alone."

"Yef that ye went, ye shulde repent, for in the forest now

I have purveid me of a maide, whom I love more than you,

Another fayrer than ever ye were, I dare it wel avowe;

And of you both, eche shuld be wrothe with other, as I trowe.

It is sayd of olde, 'sone hote, sone colde,' It were myn ease to lyve in pease; so

and so is a woman;

wyl I yf I can;

Wherfore I too the woode wyl goo, alone, Wherfore I to the wode wyl goo, alone, a

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banysshid man.”

"Though in the wood I undirstode ye had a paramour,

All this may nought remeve my thought, but that I wyl be your;

And she shal fynde me softe and kynde, and curteis every our,

Glad to fulfylle all that she wyl commaunde me, to my power;

For had ye, loo! an hondred moo, yet wolde I be that one;

For in my mynde of all mankynde I love but you alone."

"Myn owne dere love, I see the prove that ye be kynde and trewe;

Of mayde and wyfe, in all my lyf, the best that ever I knewe!

Be mery and glad, be no more sad, the case is chaungèd newe;

For it were ruthe that for

your trouth you shuld have cause to rewe. Be not dismayed, whatsoever I sayd, to you whan I began,

I wyl not too the grenewode goo, I am noo banysshyd man."

"Theis tidingis be more glad to me than to be made a quene,

Yf I were sure they shuld endure; but it is often seen,

When men wyl breke promyse, they speke the wordis on the splene.

Ye shape some wyle, me to begyle, and stele fro me, I wene.

Then were the case wurs than it was, and I more woo-begone;

For in my mynde of al mankynde I love but you alone."

"Ye shal not nede further to drede, I wyl not disparage

You, God defende, sith you descende of so grete a lynage.

Now understonde, to Westmerlande, whiche is my herytage,

I wyle you bringe, and wyth a rynge, be wey of maryage,

I wyl you take, and lady make, as shortly as I can;

Thus have ye wone an erles son, and not a bannysshyd man.'

Here may ye see that wymen be in love meke, kinde, and stable,

Late never man repreve them than, or calle them variable,

But rather prey God that we may to them be comfortable,

Whiche somtyme provyth suche as he loveth, yf they be charitable.

For sith men wolde, that wymen sholde be meke to them echeon,

Moche more ought they to God obey, and serve but hym alone.


DRAMA aside, the most engaging reading of the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods is the fiction, the social pamphlets, the literature of travel and exploration, the essays, and the various types of non-dramatic poetry.

The Elizabethans, with their restless hunger for life, were naturally greedy for fiction, and this taste was first gratified by William Painter's The Palace of Pleasure, of which the first edition, consisting of sixty stories or novelettes, appeared in 1566, subsequent editions bringing the number up to one hundred. These stories are retold or translated outright from Greek, Latin, Italian, and French sources, drawing upon such writers as Herodotus, Plutarch, Livy, Bandello, Boccaccio, and Queen Margaret of Navarre, the sister of Francis I, the Italian stories of manners predominating. Painter's collection was followed by four others, of which the most significant was George Pettie's Petite Palace of Pettie his Pleasure (1576), contayning many pretie Hystories by him, set foorth in comely Colours, and most delightfully discoursed. They are indeed set forth in come'y colors, for, like the erotic romances of the late Greek or Alexandrian school which they adapt, they are racy love tales, abound with extravagant adventure on land and sea, play havoc with geography and history, and riot in antithesis, alliteration, and endless illustrations from natural history and mythology. In the preface Pettie says that he wrote primarily for gentlewomen, and Antony à Wood - who, by the way, was Pettie's grandnephew states in the Athena Oxoniensis that in his day the book was "so far from being excellent or fine that it is more fit to be read by a schoolboy or an rustical amorata than by a gent. of mode and learning.' But the taste of 1576 was less fastidious than that of 1691 and the fact that three editions of the book appeared in the first year is rather conclusive evidence that "gents.," as well as women and rustic lovers, relished of it. Later, men of no less distinction than Lodge and Greene turned to this genre.

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Of the longer romances, Lyly's Euphues and Sidney's Arcadia are the most prominent. The Euphues is concerned with the adventures, conversations, and correspondence of Euphues of Athens and Philautus of Naples who are in pursuit of a strictly moral training. The action stands still to listen to endless discussions and harangues on love, morals, religion, and education, as tiresomely edifying as Sanford and Merton. Lyly pushes the mannerisms of Pettie to an extreme, so that the term euphuistic has ever since been synonymous with such literary artifice. The Arcadia is a somewhat similar pastoral and chivalric romance. Pyrocles of Macedon and Musidorus of Thessaly sue for the hands of Philoclea and Pamela, daughters of the king and queen of Arcady. The fortunes and misfortunes of the lovers, who encounter the most startling obstacles, are interspersed with tournaments and with endless moral reflections, and pastoral eclogues contrast country life and court life. It remained for Nashe to write The Unfortunate Traveller or The Life of Jack Wilton (1594), which was a forerunner of the eighteenth century Picaresque novel.

To the pamphleteers we are beholden for a deal of good reading. The first pamphleteer of distinction is Philip Stubbes (fl. 1581-1593), the Puritan. Stubbes studied at both Cambridge and Oxford, but instead of taking a degree, took to the road, his object being, "to see fashions, to acquaint myself with natures, qualities, properties, and conditions of all men, to break myself to the world, to learn nurture, good demeanour, and cyvil behaviour; to see the goodly situation of cities, towns and countries, with

their prospects and commodities; and finally to learn the state of all things in general, all which I could never have learned in one place." Whether it was the result of bad food and harsh treatment encountered in his seven years of travel, or merely the expression of an atrabilious nature, he emerged a snarling Puritan who set himself the task, by broadside and pamphlet, of lashing his countrymen for their vices. His principal work was The Anatomie of Abuses: containing a Discoverie, or Briefe Summarie of such Notable Vices and Imperfections as now raigne in many Countreyes of the World; but (especiallye) in a famous Ilande called Ailgna i.e. Anglia... together with . . . examples of God's Judgments . . . made Dialoguewise . (1583). It is indeed a harsh and querulous document, but yet of permanent value for its information on contemporary manners and customs. We could ill spare, for example, the glimpse he gives us of sixteenth century football.

There were not wanting those to take up his challenge. Notably Nashe, "Ingenious, ingenuous, fluent, facetious T. Nash," as Dekker affectionately addresses his departed spirit, "from whose abundant pen honey flowed to thy friends and mortal aconite to thy enemies"; one of those rare University wits who burned themselves out before they had fairly stepped over the threshold. But Nash is best known for Pierce Pennilesse, his Supplication to the Divell (1592), a satirical and scurrilous pamphlet, inspired by his poverty and growing sense of wrong.

But the most intimately personal of the pamphlets is Robert Greene's Groatsworth of Wit, bought with a Million of Repentance (1596), the adventures of a man who deserts his wife, falls in with dissolute companions, and wallows in dissipation, an autobiographical document written as this brilliant young Cambridge man was facing death from poverty and excess.

To Thomas Dekker (c.1570-c.1641), the ablest of the pamphleteers, we are indebted more than to any other writer for intimate pictures of London, first-hand impressions of social conditions outside of the court. For the city of his nativity Dekker felt a romantic and compassionate love that found voice in noble apostrophe: "O thou beautifullest daughter of two united monarchies, from thy womb received I my being, from thy breasts my nourishment." And again: "O London! thou' mother of my life, nurse of my being, a hard-hearted son might I be counted if here I should not dissolve all into tears, to hear thee pouring forth thy passionate condolements.

Of his life we know little aside from his writings, but these are adequate to show his magnanimity; his capacity for abundant friendship; his compassion for all who suffer and are oppressed children burning up with fever, youth with the door of opportunity closed in their faces, maidens driven to hateful marriage beds, laborers broken in body and spirit, wounded soldiers munching the dry crust of ingratitude, desolate old men and women; adequate to show his indignation at all selfishness, cruelty, false pride, and hypocrisy — at greedy monopolists who crowd out little men, at doctors who refuse their services through craven fear of the plague, at usurers who squeeze their victims dry, at Churchmen who forget the things of God, at all those who prey upon their fellows under cover of darkness; to show his love of all beautiful things, be they the creations of nature or of man; his ardor for wisdom and poetry; his reverence and his piety. "The first true gentleman that ever breathed," he calls Christ in a well-known line, and he was himself the real Christian gentleman among commoners, as Sir Philip Sidney among the nobility; a real democrat, moreover, expressing the growing democratic spirit at its best.

Withal he had a glowing imagination, a ruddy sense of humor, a feeling for the sublime, and an ear for prose, at times simple and direct, at times nervous and passionately swift.

The selection from The Gull's Horn-book (1609) shows Dekker in playfully satirical mood.

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