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Alas for pite! that Percy thus was spylt,1
O cruell Mars, thou dedly god of war!
O dolorous teusday, dedicate to thy name, When thou shoke thy sworde so noble a man to mar!
O grounde ungracious, unhappy be thy fame, Whiche wert endyed with rede blode of the same! Moste noble erle! O fowle mysuryd3 grounde Whereon he gat his fynal dedely wounde!
O Atropos, of the fatall systers thre,
Goddes mooste cruell unto the lyf of man,
O homycide, whiche sleest* all that thou kan,
That with thy sworde enharpid" of mortall drede, 125
Of this lordis dethe and of his murdrynge.
3 misused, applied to a bad purpose.
5 hooked or edged.
* Alluding to his crest and supporters. Doutted is contracted for redoubted.
Paregall' to dukis, with kings he myght compare,
What nedethe me for to extoll his fame
With my rude pen enkankerd all with rust? Whos noble actis shew worsheply his name,
Transcendyng far myne homely muse, that must Yet sumwhat wright supprisid with hartly lust,3 145 Truly reportinge his right noble astate, Immortally whiche is immaculate.
His noble blode never disteynyd was,
Trew to his prince for to defende his right,
Treytory* and treson he bannesht out of syght,
In me all onely wer sett and comprisyde,
O yonge lyon, bot tender yet of age,6
Grow and encrese, remembre thyn astate, God the assyst unto thyn herytage,
overpowered with hearty desire. 5 whole choir.
the earl's son was only eleven years old at the time of his father's death.]
And geve the grace to be more fortunate, Agayne rebellyouns arme to make debate. And, as the lyoune, whiche is of bestis kinge, Unto thy subjectis be kurteis and benyngne. I pray God sende the prosperous lyf and long, Stabille thy mynde constant to be and fast, Right to mayntein, and to resist all wronge: All flattringe faytors1 abhor and from the cast, Of foule detraction God kepe the from the blast: Let double delinge in the have no place, And be not light of credence in no case.
[1 deceivers. " although. • fine or forfeiture.
Wythe hevy chere, with dolorous hart and mynd,
Allgyf' Englond and Fraunce were thorow saught.
More specially barons, and those knygtes bold,
Whom he as lord worsheply manteynd:
To sorowfull weping they ought to be constreynd, As oft as thei call to ther remembraunce, Of ther good lord the fate and dedely chaunce.
O perlese prince of hevyn emperyalle,
That with one worde formed al thing of noughte; Hevyn, hell, and erth obey unto thi kall;
Which to thy resemblance wondersly hast wrought All mankynd, whom thou full dere hast boght, With thy blode precious our finaunce3 thou dyd pay,195 And us redemed, from the fendys pray ;*
To the pray we, as prince incomperable,
As thou art of mercy and pite the well, Thou bringe unto thy joye etermynable'
The sowle of this lorde from all daunger of hell, 200 In endles blis with the to byde and dwell In thy palace above the orient, Where thou art lorde, and God omnipotent.
O quene of mercy, O lady full of
Maiden moste pure, and goddis moder dere,
In joy triumphaunt the hevenly yerarchy,'
With all the hole sorte of that glorious place, His soule mot✶ receyve into ther company
Thorowe bounte of hym that formed all solace : Well of pite, of mercy, and of grace, The father, the son, and the holy goste In Trinitate one God of myghts moste.
ttt I have placed the foregoing poem-of Skelton's before the following extract from Hawes, not only because it was written first, but because I think Skelton is in general to be considered as the earlier poet; many of his poems being written long before Hawes's Graunde Amour.
THE TOWER OF DOCTRINE.
'HE reader has here a specimen of the descriptive powers of Stephen Hawes, a celebrated poet in the reign of Hen. VII. tho' now little known. It is extracted from an allegorical poem of his (written in 1505.) intitled, The History of Graunde Amoure and La Bel Pucell, called the Pastime of Pleasure, &c. 4to. 1555. See more of Hawes in Ath. Ox. v. 1. p. 6. and Warton's Observ. v. 2. p. 105. He was also author of a book, intitled, The Temple of Glass. Wrote by Stephen Hawes, gentleman of the bedchamber to K. Henry VII. Pr. for Caxton, 4to. no date.
The following Stanzas are taken from Chap. III. and IV. of the Hist. above-mentioned. "How Fame departed from Graunde Amoure and left him with Governaunce and Grace, and how he went to the Tower of Doctrine, &c."-As we are able to give no small lyric piece of Hawes's, the reader will excuse the insertion of this extract.
[Most readers will probably be satisfied with the seventy-four lines that Percy has extracted from Hawes's long didactic poem, but those who wish to read the whole will find it reprinted by Mr. Thomas Wright in the fifteenth volume of the Percy Society's publications. The account of Rhetorick and the other allegorical nullities is weary reading, but the chapter in commendation of Gower, Chaucer and the author's master Lydgate, "the chefe orygynal of my lernyng," is interesting from a literary point of view. The poem was very popular in its own day and passed through several editions, and it has found admirers among critics of a later age. The Rev. Dr. Hodgson in a letter to Percy, dated Sept. 22, 1800, speaks of it in very extravagant terms, and regrets that it had not then found an editor, as he regarded it " as one of the finest poems in our own or any other language." Warton describes Hawes as the only writer deserving the name of a poet in the reign of Henry VII. and says that "this poem contains no common touches of romantic and allegoric fiction." Mr. Wright however looks at it as one of those allegorical writings which were popular with our forefathers, but which can now only be looked upon as monuments of the bad taste
[1 Nichols' Illustrations of Literature, vol. viii. p. 344.]