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same signature Ignoto, in that collection, is an imitation of Marlow's beginning thus:
"COME live with me, and be my dear,
Upon the whole I am inclined to attribute them to Marlow, and Raleigh; notwithstanding the authority of Shakspeare's Book of Sonnets. For it is well known that as he took no care of his own compositions, so was he utterly regardless what spurious things were fathered upon him. Sir John Oldcastle, The London Prodigal, and The Yorkshire Tragedy, were printed with his name at full length in the titlepages, while he was living, which yet were afterwards rejected by his first editors Heminge and Condell, who were his intimate friends (as he mentions both in his will,) and therefore no doubt had good authority for setting them aside.*
The following sonnet appears to have been (as it deserved) a great favourite with our carlier poets: for, besides the imitation above mentioned, another is to be found among DONNE's Poems, entitled "The Bait," beginning thus:
"COME live with me, and be my love,
"And we will some new pleasures prove
As for Chr. Marlow, who was in high repute for his Dramatic writings, he lost his life by a stab received in a brothel, before the year 1598. See A. Wood, i. 138.
Since the above was written, Mr. MALONE, with his usual discernment, hath rejected the stanzas in question from the other sonnets, &c. of Shakspeare, in his correct edition of the PASSIONATE PILGRIM, &C. See his Shaksp. vol. x. p. 3
COME live with me, and be my love,
There will we sit upon the rocks,
There will I make thee beds of roses
With a thousand fragrant posies,
A cap of flowers, and a kirtle
Imbrodered all with leaves of mirtle;
A gown made of the finest wool,
A belt of straw, and ivie buds,
And if these pleasures may thee move,
The shepherd swains shall dance and sing
THE NYMPH'S REPLY.
If that the World and Love were young,
But time drives flocks from field to fold,
The flowers do fade, and wanton fields
To wayward winter reckoning yield:
A honey tongue, a heart of gall,
Is fancies spring, but sorrows fall.
Thy gowns, thy shoes, thy beds of roses,
Thy cap, thy kirtle, and thy posies,
Soon break, soon wither, soon forgotten,
In folly ripe, in reason rotten.
Thy belt of straw, and ivie buds,
But could youth last, and love still breed,
Had joyes no date, nor age no need;
TITUS ANDRONICUS'S COMPLAINT.
The Reader has here an ancient ballad on the same subject as the play of Titus Andronicus, and it is probable that the one was borrowed from the other: but which of them was the original, it is not easy to decide. And yet, if the argument offered above in page 227, for the priority of the ballad of the Jew of Venice may be admitted, somewhat of the same kind may be urged here; for this ballad differs from the play in several particulars, which a simple Balladwriter would be less likely to alter than an inventive Tragedian. Thus in the ballad is no mention of the contest for the empire between the two brothers, the composing of which makes the ungrateful treatment of Titus afterwards the more flagrant: neither is there any notice taken of his sacrificing one of Tamora's sons, which the tragic poet has assigned as the original cause of all her cruelties. In the play Titus loses twenty-one of his sons in war, and kills another for assisting Bassianus to carry off Lavinia: the reader will find it different in the ballad. In the latter she is betrothed to the emperor's son: in the play to his brother. In the tragedy only Two of his sons fall into the pit, and the Third being banished returns to Rome with a victorious army, to avenge the wrongs of his house in the ballad all Three are entrapped and suffer death. In the scene the Emperor kills Titus, and is in return stabbed by Titus's surviving Here Titus kills the Emperor, and afterwards
Let the Reader weigh these circumstances and some others wherein he will find them unlike, and
then pronounce for himself.-After all, there is reason to conclude that this play was rather improved by Shakspeare with a few fine touches of his pen, than originally written by him; for, not to mention that the style is less figurative than his others generally are, this tragedy is mentioned with discredit in the Induction to Ben Jonson's Batholomew Fair, in 1614, as one that had then been exhibited "five-andtwenty or thirty years:" which, if we take the lowest number, throws it back to the year 1589, at which time Shakspeare was but 25: an earlier date than can be found for any other of his pieces:* and if it does not clear him entirely of it, shows at least it was a first attempt.t
The following is given from a copy in "The Golden Garden" entitled as above; compared with three others, two of them in black letter in the Pepys collection, entitled, "The Lamentable and Tragical "History of Titus Andronicus, &c.-To the tune of "Fortune. Printed for E. Wright."-Unluckily none of these have any dates.
You noble minds, and famous martiall wights,
* Mr. MALONE thinks 1591 to be the ara when our author commenced a writer for the stage. See in his Shaksp, the ingenious "Attempt to ascertain the order in which the plays of "Shakespeare were written."
† Since the above was written, Shakspeare's memory has been fully vindicated from the charge of writing the above play by the best critics. See what has been urged by STEE VENS and MALONE in their excellent editions of Shakspeare, &c.