By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: Narcissus - A Twelfe Night Merriment
Author: Unknown
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Narcissus - A Twelfe Night Merriment" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Transcriber's note

Variable, archaic or unusual spelling and punctuation have been retained
apart from minor punctuation inconsistencies which have been silently
corrected. A list of other changes made can be found at the end of the
book. Line numbers and sidenotes are placed within [square brackets].

For this text version, text in superscript is placed within curly
brackets preceded by a carat character like ^{this}. Diacritical marks
that cannot be represented in plain text are shown in the following

  [=a] a with macron
  Ligature [oe] is encoded as oe.

  Mark up: _italics_

The Tudor Library.


_Five hundred copies of this Edition are printed._


  ANNO 1602.

















  6. ECCHO.
  9. CLOIS.
  10. THE WELL.
  11. PORTER.


IN editing the hitherto unpublished play of _Narcissus_, together with
the three speeches and the letter composed for Francis Clarke, porter of
S. John's, I have retained throughout the very irregular spelling of the
MS. The punctuation and use of capital letters have, however, been
modernized, the contractions employed for _the_, _which_, _with_,
_what_, and certain prefixes, expanded, and a few obviously scribal
errors corrected in the text, the notes supplying in every such case the
original MS. reading.

In bringing to its conclusion a work which now seems even less
satisfactorily performed than I once hoped it might be, there is at
least a pleasure in recording thanks to all those who have interested
themselves on my behalf, and aided me with suggestions and criticisms,
or--as in the case of the editors of the _N. E. D._--with valuable
references. Indeed, were it not for the direct and indirect help of
friends--and amongst those who have given me the former I must make
special and grateful mention of Professor Ker, Professor Napier, and Mr.
Madan--_Narcissus_ would have been left to find a worthier editor.




THIS play, which for want of a ready-made title I have called
_Narcissus_, dates from a period of peculiar interest in the history of
that class of dramatic composition to which it belongs.

So vast a phenomenon as the rise and fall of the complete English drama
could not but be attended by widely-spread symptoms of the popular love
for stage representation; a tendency which, though it would never have
produced a Shaksperian tragedy, yet alone rendered possible the work of
a Shakspere. These lesser manifestations of the feeling that pervaded
Elizabethan England may be compared to the small fissures on the side of
a volcano, through which the same lava as fills the molten crater
emanates in slender and perhaps hardly perceptible channels. It may
chance that the activity of these side-streams presages the final
eruption at the summit; yet afterwards they are scarcely noticed, and
their effects are too puny to attract attention. So it is with the
abortive forms of drama, heralding, accompanying, and in some cases
outliving, the culmination of English dramatic art under Shakspere. They
are not, as a rule, the product of those great intellects which helped
in the rearing of the main structure; but rather of such lesser writers
as were either possessed by the dramatic spirit while ignorant of the
formative and restraining rules of art, or else imbued with a desire to
follow those rules, as they had been drawn up by Aristotle and Horace
and exemplified in French and Italian literature, whilst themselves
wanting in originality, and oblivious of the superiority of a native
growth over the best of importations. The latter class of would-be
English dramatists, in especial, found a natural field for action
amongst the scholarly societies which constituted a mediæval university.
Though as early as 1584 and 1593 statutes are found enacting that no
players shall perform within five miles of Oxford, it must be remembered
that these refer to professional, not to academical actors, and that the
regulations controlling the former were of much greater stringency than
those which concerned the latter.

Nor were plays imitated from Greek and Latin writers the only ones to be
performed by undergraduates and others before select audiences in the
college halls. Youthful players would probably demand the introduction
of something more or less witty; and the fact that theatrical
representations generally took place on the occasion of a royal visit,
or at times of special rejoicing, accounts in some degree for the
casting aside of the strictly classical models, and the employment of
masques, or of such looser forms of comedy as were the outcome of
Heywood's _Interludes_, into either of which contemporary allusions and
jests could be readily introduced. Nevertheless, the majority of such
pieces continued to deal with subjects taken from Roman and Greek
mythology, the various anachronisms and absurdities which arose from
this method of treatment only contributing to heighten the amusement of
the spectators.

I have already implied that _Narcissus_ belongs to the class of
University plays, inasmuch as it was acted at S. John's College, Oxford,
on Twelfth Night, 1602. It does not, however, approximate in any way to
the classical form of comedy; it is rather to be regarded as a Christmas
piece, an imitation of the Yule-tide mummeries acted by disguised
villagers or townsfolk at the houses of such wealthier persons as would
afford them hospitality.

The following list of Oxford plays--compiled, with additions, from W. L.
Courtney's article in _Notes and Queries_ for December 11th, 1886, and
W. Carew Hazlitt's _Manual of English Plays_--may be of interest, as
showing the frequency of dramatic entertainments at the various colleges
between 1547 and the Restoration. The dates appended are in most cases
those of presentation; but when these are either unknown, or impossible
to distinguish from dates of entry at Stationers' Hall, I have
substituted the latter.

  1547.   _Archipropheta_, sive _Joannes Baptista_, by Nicholas Grimald,
          in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1566.   _Marcus Geminus_, by (?) in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1566.   _Palæmon and Arcyte_, by Richard Edwards, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1566.   _Ariosto_, by Geo. Gascoigne, at Trin. Coll.

  1566.   _Progne_, by Dr. James Calfhill, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  ? 1580. _Ulysses Redux_, by William Gager, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1581.   _Meleager_, by William Gager, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1582.   _Supposes_, translated from Ariosto, by Geo. Gascoigne, at
          Trin. Coll.

  1582.   _Julius Cæsar_, by Dr. Geddes, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1583.   _Rivales_, by William Gager, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1583.   _Dido_, by William Gager, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  ?       _Tancred_, by H. Wotton, at Queen's Coll.

  ?       _Kermophus_, by George Wild (?) at (?)

  1591.   _Kynes Redux_, by William Gager, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1592.   _Bellum Grammaticale_, sive _Nominum Verborumque Discordia
          Civilis_, by (?) at Ch. Ch.

  ? 1602. _Hamlet_, by W. Shakspere, at (?).

  1602.   _Narcissus_, by (?) at S. John's College.

  1605.   _Ajax Flagellifer_, by (?) at (?).

  1605.   _Alba_, by (?) in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1605.   _Vertumnus_, sive, _Annus Recurrens Oxonii_, by Dr. Matthew
          Gwinne, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1606.   _The Queen's Arcadia_, by Samuel Daniel, in Ch. Ch. Hall.

  1607.   _Cæsar and Pompey_, by (?) at Trin. Coll.

  1607.   _The Christmas Prince_, by divers hands, at S. John's Coll.

  1608.   _Yule-tide_, by (?) at Ch. Ch.

  1614.   _Spurius_, by Peter Heylin, at Hart Hall.

  1617.   _Technogamia_, by Barten Holiday, at Ch. Ch.

  1617-8. _Philosophaster_, by R. Burton, at Ch. Ch.

  1631.   _The Raging Turk_, by Thomas Goffe, at Ch. Ch.

  1632.   _The Courageous Turk_, by Thomas Goffe, at Ch. Ch.

  1633.   _Fuimus Troes_, by Dr. Jasper Fisher, at Magd. Coll.

  1633.   _Orestes_, by Thomas Goffe, at Ch. Ch.

  ? 1634. _The Sophister_, by R. Zouch, at (?).

  1634-5. _Euphormus_, sive, _Cupido Adultus_, by Geo. Wilde, at S. John's

  1636.   _Stonehenge_, by John Speed, at S. John's Coll.

  1636.   _The floating Island_, by William Strode, at Ch. Ch.

  1636.   _Love's Hospital_ (or, _The Hospital of Lovers_), by Geo. Wilde,
          at S. John's Coll.

  1636.   _The Royal Slave_, by William Cartwright, at Ch. Ch.

  1637.   _The Converted Robber_, by Geo. Wilde, at S. John's College.

  ? 1640. _Pharamus_, sive, _Libido Vindex_ (also published under the
          title of _Thibaldus_, sive _Vindictæ Ingenium_), by Thomas
          Snelling, at (?).

  1648.   _Stoicus Vapulans_, by (?) at S. John's Coll.

  1648.   _Amorous War_, by Jasper Maine, D.D., at (?).

  ?       _The Scholar_, by Richard Lovelace, at Gloucester Hall.
          (Prologue and Epilogue appear in _Lucasta_, 1649.)

  1651.   _The Lady Errant_, by William Cartwright, at (?).

  1653.   _The Inconstant Lady_, by Arthur Wilson, at Trin. Coll. (?)

  1654.   _The Combat of Love and Friendship_, by Robt. Mead, at Ch. Ch.

  1660.   _The Christmas Ordinary_, by W. R., M.A., at Trin. Coll.

  1660.   _The Guardian_, by (?) at "new dancing-school against S.
          Michael's Church." (Wood, iii. 705.)

  1663.   _Flora's Vagaries_, by Richard Rhodes, at Ch. Ch.

This catalogue does not, of course, pretend to be exhaustive. An
examination of the various college archives would doubtless afford
further material. There exists, for instance, the record of performances
at Merton; cf. G. C. Brodrick's _Memorials of Merton College_ (Oxford
Hist. Soc., 1885), p. 67: "In January and February, 1566-7, two dramatic
performances were given in the Warden's lodgings by members of the
foundation ... the one being an English comedy, and the other Terence's
_Eunuchus_.... Again, in 1568, a play of Plautus was acted in the hall."

It will be seen that of the above-mentioned plays six, besides
_Narcissus_, were performed at the College of S. John the Baptist, the
first recorded being the _Christmas Prince_ in 1607, the succeeding ones
taking place after an interval of twenty-six years; and to these we
should very probably add _Pharamus_, the writer of which, Thomas
Snelling, "became Scholar of S. John's in 1633, aged 19, and afterwards
fellow ... and was esteemed an excellent Latin poet." (Wood, _Ath. Ox._,
vol. iii., p. 275.)

A passage from Wake's _Rex Platonicus_ (ed. 1, p. 18) is also worthy of
note in this connection: "Quorum primos jam ordines dum principes
contemplantur, primisque congratulantium acclamationibus delectantur,
Collegium Diui Iohannis, nobile literarum domicilium (quod Dominus
Thomas Whitus Prætor olim Londinensis, opimis reditibus locupletârat)
faciles eorum oculos speciosæ structuræ adblanditione invitat; moxque et
oculos & aures detinet ingeniosâ nec injucundâ lusiunculâ quâ
clarissimus præses cum quinquaginta, quos alit Collegium studiosis,
magnaque studentium conuiventium cateruâ prodeuns, principes in transitu
salutandos censuit.

"Fabulæ ansam dedit antiqua de Regia prosapia historiola apud
Scoto-Britannos celebrata, quæ narrat tres olim Sibyllas occurrisse
duobus Scotiæ proceribus Macbetho & Banchoni, & illum prædixisse Regem
futurum, sed Regem nullum geniturum, hunc Regem non futurum, sed Reges
geniturum multos. Vaticinii veritatem rerum eventus comprobavit:
Banchonis enim è stirpe Potentissimus Iacobus oriundus. Tres
adolescentes concinno Sibyllarum habitu induti, è Collegio prodeuntes, &
carmina lepida alternatim canentes, Regi se tres esse illas Sibyllas
profitentur, quæ Banchoni olim Sobolis imperia prædixerant, jamque
iterum comparere, vt eâdem vaticinij veritate prædicerent Iacobo, se
iam, & diu regem futurum Britanniæ felicissimum & multorum Regum
parentem, vt ex Banchonis stirpe nunquam sit hæres Britannico diademati
defuturus. Deinde tribus Principibus suaves felicitatum triplicitates
triplicatis carminum vicibus succinentes veniamque precantes, quòd
alumni ædium Divi Iohannis (qui præcursor Christi) alumnos Ædis Christi
(quo tum Rex tendebat) præcursoriâ hâc salutatione antevertissent,
Principes ingeniosâ fictiunculâ delectatos dimittunt; quos inde vniversa
astantium multitudo, felici prædictionum successui suffragans, votis
precibusque ad portam vsque civitatis Borealem prosequitur."

       *       *       *       *       *

The _Christmas Prince_ is, properly speaking, not a single play, but a
collection of performances consequent on the revival of the old custom,
left in abeyance since 1577, of choosing a prince, or master of the
revels, who should exercise undisputed authority during the festive
season, and in whose honour the company at large should indulge freely
in various sorts of pastimes. The account given of this revival, in
1607, seems to imply that there had been of late years no Christmas
festivities at S. John's. In 1602 the college porter, pleading for the
admission of players on Twelfth Night, could say:

    "Christmas is now at the point to bee past;
    'Tis giving vp the ghost and this is the last;
    And shall it passe thus without life or cheere?
    This hath not beene seene this many a yeere."

Without laying too much stress upon a single allusion, it is safe to
assert that the discovery of the comedy of _Narcissus_, played five
years earlier than the performances of which an account is given in the
_Christmas Prince_, must be of considerable interest in the history of
S. John's, and indeed in that of Oxford play-acting generally.

The MS. containing this comedy is one of the Rawlinson collection, now
in the possession of the Bodleian Library. The volume, which is 5½ × 4
inches in size, with 156 leaves, appears to have been the commonplace
book of an Oxford man. It contains a variety of English poems and prose
pieces, written at the end of the sixteenth and beginning of the
seventeenth century; amongst them several pages of extracts from the
essays of Bacon and of his less-known contemporary Robert Johnson. Sir
H. Wotton's poem, "How happy is he borne or taught," also finds a place
in the collection. But the majority of the contents are of small
literary value, and, so far as I am aware, have never been published.
Perhaps the most interesting pieces in the volume are certain "English
Epigrammes much like Buckminster's Almanacke ... calculated by John
Davis of Grayes Inne ... 1594" of the character of which the following
lines, occurring early in the series, may give some idea.

_Of a Gull._

    "Oft in my laughinge rimes I name a gull,
    But this new tearme will many questions breed,
    Therefore at first I will describe at full
    Who is a true & perfect gull indeede.

    "A gull is hee that weares a velvett gowne,
    And when a wench is brave dare not speake to her;
    A gull is hee that traverseth the towne,
    And is for marriage knowne a common wooer.

    "A gull is hee that, when he proudly weares
    A silver hilted rapier by his side,
    Endures the lye and knocks about the eares,
    Whilst in his sheath his sleepinge sword doth bide.

    "A gull is hee that hath good handsome cloaths,
    And stands in presence stroking vpp his haire,
    And fills vpp his imperfecte speech with oathes,
    But speaks not one wise woord throughout the yeere.
    But, to define a gull in tearms precise,
    A gull is hee that seemes, and is not, wise."

That the play now under consideration is the work of some member or
members of the college of S. John's there can be no doubt. It is, as the
Prologue affirms, "Ovid's owne Narcissus," _i.e._, the story of
Narcissus as told in the third book of the _Metamorphoses_, which forms
the basis of the plot; and the resemblance to the Latin is in parts so
close as necessarily to imply a knowledge of that language on the part
of the writer. There is, indeed, one passage of literal and yet graceful
translation (see ll. 494-505) which especially betokens a scholarly

But it has been already hinted that the chief interest of the comedy
lies in another direction. The arrangement and methods are those of the
rough-and-ready English stage of the period; and as in the Pyramus and
Thisbe interlude of the _Midsummer Night's Dream_, and the Nine Worthies
of _Love's Labour's Lost_, the writer imitates and ridicules that naïve
realism which appertained to native comedy in its rude embryonic forms.
The absurdities with which the _Narcissus_ abounds are obviously
intentional; it is, in fact, a burlesque, not skilful nor humorous
enough to take its place beside the immortal parodies of Shakspere,
which in aim and scope it resembles, but a good average specimen of its
class, doubtless provocative of intense delight in the minds of a
contemporary audience. It is, of course, with a view to heightening the
reality of the effect that the Porter is made to plead on behalf of
certain "youths of the parish," who are waiting, armed with their
wassail-bowl, for admittance into the hall, and who, besides a song,
have "some other sporte too out of dowbt" for the delectation of the
assembled guests. Then follows, first the song, and afterwards an
altercation in prose between the Porter and the Players, who assume an
air of bashfulness when called upon to exercise their dramatic talent.
Finally, the Prologue enters, and the play is begun; the general
smoothness of the versification standing out in contrast to the
intentional doggerel of the Porter's introductory speech and epilogue.

The mention of "youths of the parish" is probably not serious; but as an
allusion to a real play of the kind here imitated, the following extract
from the _Christmas Prince_ (ed. 1816, p. 25) may be of interest: "S.
Steevens day was past over in silence, and so had S. John's day also;
butt that some of the princes honest neighbours of S. Giles presented
him with a maske or morris, which though it were but rudely performed,
yet itt being so freely & lovingly profered it could not but bee as
lovingly received."

       *       *       *       *       *

I shall now pass on to the consideration of the play itself, and, first,
of the characters which make up the list of _dramatis personæ_. Five of
these, namely, Tiresias, Cephisus, Narcissus, Echo, and Liriope, appear
in the story of Narcissus as told by Ovid. Cephisus, son of Pontus and
Thalassa, and divinity of the river whence he derives his name, is the
father of the hero; the nymph Liriope is his mother. Tiresias, the blind
prophet of Thebes, and Echo, the unhappy victim of the anger of Juno and
the contempt of Narcissus, are well-known figures in classical
mythology. Neither Dorastus and Clinias, who attend Narcissus as
youthful friends, nor Florida and Clois, nymphs enamoured of his beauty,
have any actual counterparts in the _Metamorphoses_.

Most curious and interesting is the inclusion of "The Well" in the list
of characters. We have here no mere stage property, or piece of scenery,
but an actual personification of an inanimate object, closely resembling
that of Wall and Moonshine in Peter Quince's company. Just as Moonshine
carries a lantern to represent more vividly the actual moon, so the
personage called The Well aids the imagination of his audience by the
visible sign of a water-bucket. The fact of his being enumerated amongst
the _dramatis personæ_ shows that the part was played by a separate
artist, and not doubled with that of any other character. Of the Porter,
Francis, more will be said in Section II.

       *       *       *       *       *

The play of _Narcissus_, though it can boast of no artificial divisions,
falls naturally into twelve different portions, which for want of a
better term I will call scenes. Whilst using this word it is necessary
to bear in mind that no change of _scenery_ is implied, and probably
none was intended.

_Scene I._ reveals Cephisus, Liriope, and Narcissus, awaiting the
prophet Tiresias. It consists of 132 lines, amplified from _Met._ iii.
341, 346-348:

    "Prima fide vocisque ratæ tentamina sumsit
    Cærula Liriope ...
    ... De quo consultus, an esset
    Tempora maturæ visurus longa senectæ
    Fatidicus vates--'Si se non viderit' inquit."

The introduction of Cephisus, the conversation between Narcissus and his
parents, the telling of the youth's fate _by the aid of chiromancy_, and
Liriope's scornful comment on the prophecy, are the materials used by
the English writer to form an effective scene.

_Scene II._ is wholly an interpolation. Dorastus and Clinias also try
their fate with Tiresias; he prophesies their early death, and they jest
upon the subject.

_Scene III._, in which Dorastus and Clinias flatter Narcissus for his
beauty, has no counterpart in Ovid. Probably, however, it was suggested
by _Met._ iii. 353-355:

    "Multi illum juvenes, multæ cupiere puellæ;
    Sed fuit in tenera tam dira superbia forma;
    Nulli illum juvenes, nullæ tetigere puellæ."

_Scene IV._ pursues a like theme; the nymphs Florida and Clois are in
their turn repulsed by the scornful youth, and relate their woes to
Dorastus and Clinias.

The hint for this is given in _Met._ iii. 402:

    "Sic hanc, sic alias undis aut montibus ortas
    Luserat hic Nymphas."

And likewise the suggestion of Florida's revengeful wish:

    "Inde manus aliquis despectus ad æthera tollens
    'Sic amet ipse licet, sic non potiatur amato!'

_Scene V._ Echo enters, and gives an account of herself, amplified--with
a very free use of the English vernacular--from _Met._ iii. 356-368.

_Scene VI._, which has no counterpart in Ovid, consists of a spirited
hunting-song in five stanzas, sung (presumably) while Narcissus,
Dorastus, and Clinias chase a supposed hare over the stage.

_Scene VII._ introduces the "one with a bucket," _i.e._, The Well. The
first twelve lines of his speech are a literal and smoothly-versified
translation of _Met._ iii. 407-412. In Ovid, however, this description
of the well comes after the conversation between Echo and Narcissus, and
the account proceeds at once (l. 413) with:

    "Hic puer, et studio venandi lassus et æstu,

It is doubtful why the English writer should have preferred to introduce
the Well thus early. With Ovid's lines may be compared those in the
translation of the _Romaunt of the Rose_ attributed to Chaucer:

    "----Springyng in a marble stone,
    Had nature set the sothe to tel
    Under that pyne tree a wel.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Aboute it is grasse springyng
    For moyste so thycke and wel lykyng,
    That it ne may in wynter dye
    No more than may the see be drye.

           *       *       *       *       *

    For of the welle this is the syne,
    In worlde is none so clere of hewe,
    The water is euer fresshe and newe
    That welmeth vp with wawes bright."

_Scene VIII._ consists of a dialogue between Dorastus and Echo.

_Scene IX._ continues the same theme, Clinias being substituted for
Dorastus. Both these scenes are interpolations, introduced evidently for
the amusement of the audience rather than for any bearing on the main

_Scene X._ Here Narcissus delivers himself of a soliloquy, suggested by
_Met._ iii. 479:

    "Forte puer, comitum seductus et agmine fido,

He is answered by Echo, who wishes to proffer him her affection. The
conversation, gathered from Ovid, runs as follows:

    "Ecquis adest?
    Quid me fugis?
    Quid me fugis?
    Huc Coëamus!

This, with various amplifications, is followed in ll. 602-630 of the

Here, however, there is no reproduction of Ovid's account:

    "Et verbis favet ipsa suis, egressaque silvis
    Ibat, ut injiceret sperato brachia collo.
    Ille fugit, fugiensque manus complexibus aufert."

which leads on to and explains the next speech of Narcissus:

    "'Ante' ait 'emoriar, quam sit tibi copia nostri.'"

rendered in the English by:

    "Let mee dye first ere thou meddle with mee."

This terminates the interview; Echo does not seem to make any appearance
on the stage. The few lines which, in Ovid, describe the effect of her
hopeless love, are partly followed in ll. 740-747 of the English play.

_Scene XI._ Dorastus and Clinias abuse, fight with, and finally kill
each other.

_Scene XII._ Narcissus enters, _fleeing from Echo_ (a connecting touch
not found in Ovid). His speech, on discovering the well, is a mixture of
the description of his transports in the _Metamorphoses_, and of the
soliloquy there attributed to him. ll. 697-707 of the _Narcissus_
correspond word for word to _Met._ iii. 442-450.

It is remarkable that the use of the name of the goddess of corn instead
of bread itself ("Cereris," l. 437) should have suggested to the English
writer a similar metaphorical use of the names of Morpheus and Bacchus.
Another small point worthy of note is the introduction of a jest into
the midst of this mournful scene; Ovid's:

    "Et, quantum motu formosi suspicor oris,
    Verba refers aures non pervenientia nostras"

being irreverently rendered by:

    "And by thy lippes moving, well I doe suppose
    Woordes thou dost speake, may well come to our nose;
    For to oure eares I am sure they never passe."

Ovid's Narcissus discovers his own identity with the vision (_Met._ iii.
463), which the English version ignores; while, on the other hand, the
prophecy of ll. 730-731:

                        "I, which whilome was
    The flower of youth, shalbee made flower againe"

finds no counterpart in Ovid.

Many of the reflections and entreaties ascribed to Narcissus in the
Latin version are omitted in the English; neither is there any mention
of the beating of the breast (_Met._ iii. 480-485). The final
conversation with Echo is given thus by Ovid:

    Heu frustra dilecte puer!
    Heu frustra dilecte puer!

The English writer somewhat amplifies this, Echo being always a
favourite stage-character. The rising up of Narcissus after death is an
English expedient; so is Echo's return to give a final account of
herself, the matter of which is suggested, as has been said, by _Met._
iii. 393-401.

So much for the classical basis of the play; it remains to notice
briefly the points in which it resembles an English comedy, or shows
traces of the influence of other English writers. Most remarkable in the
latter connection is the frequent coincidence of expressions between the
_Narcissus_ and Shakspere's _Henry IV._ (Part 1.). Amongst these are the

  L. 78. Ladds of metall. Cf. 1 _Henry IV._, ii. 4, 13.
     80. No vertue extant               "    ii. 4, 132.
    111. I tickle (them) for            "    ii. 4, 489.
    422. Never ioyd (it) since          "    ii. 1, 13.
    575. Kee (= quoth) pickpurse        "    ii. 1, 53.
    734. (My) grandam earth             "   iii. 1, 34.

See also the notes on ll. 282, 396, and 683.

As _Henry IV._ was entered at Stationers' Hall February 25th, 1597, and
the first quarto appeared in 1598, it is quite possible that these may
be direct borrowings on the part of the writer of the _Narcissus_.

A common trick of English burlesque at this time (cf. _Midsummer Night's
Dream_, v. 1, 337, etc.) was the inversion of epithets, producing
nonsensical combinations; an expedient which, if we condemn it as poor
wit, we must at least allow to fall under the definition of humour as
"the unexpected." A good example of this occurs in ll. 360, 361:

    "So cruell as the huge camelion,
    Nor yet so changing as small elephant."

And another in ll. 677, 678:

    "But oh, remaine, and let thy christall lippe
    No more of this same cherrye water sippe."

Sarcastic allusions are also not wanting; see, for instance, the
cheerful inducement held out to Narcissus:

    "As true as Helen was to Menela,
    So true to you will bee thy Florida."

And cf. the notes on ll. 337, 342.

There are several facetious mistakes in the forms of words, such as
_spoone_ for moon (l. 350), _Late-mouse_ for Latmus (l. 279), and
_Davis_ for Davus (l. 400); of which the first recalls Ancient Pistol's
"Cannibals" (2 _Henry IV._ ii. 4, 180), or the contrary slip in _Every
Man in his Humour_, iii. 4, 53, and the two latter, Bottom's "Shafalus"
and "Procrus," and the blunders of Costard.

The naïve devices by which the players seem to have made up for some
paucity of accoutrements and stage appliances, and their direct appeals
to the intelligence of the audience to excuse all defects, are highly
edifying. There is, as I have before remarked, no indication of any
scenery; and the only characters whom we know to have worn a special
dress are Tiresias and Liriope. The prophets of classical history were
often converted into bishops by English writers; so, for example,
Helenus, son of Priam, in the fourteenth century alliterative _Gest
Hystoriale of Troy_. This is why Tiresias wears a bishop's rochet. It is
unfortunate that the collection of robes now in the possession of St.
John's College does not include a garment of this description.

Liriope has a symbolical costume, which she very carefully interprets to

    "And I thy mother nimphe, as may bee seene
    By coulours that I weare, blew, white, and greene;
    For nimphes ar of the sea, and sea is right
    Of coulour truly greene and blew and white.
    Would you knowe how, I pray? Billowes are blew,
    Water is greene, and foome is white of hue."

Cephisus is content to carry the emblems of his origin, which he
emphasizes at the same time by representative action:

    "Thy father I, Cephisus, that brave river
    Who is all water, doe like water shiver.
    As any man of iudgment may descrye
    By face, hands washt, and bowle, thy father I."

In the same way Narcissus, rising up after his supposed death, bears a
daffodil as a sign of his metamorphosis, addressing the audience after a
manner more brusque than polite:

    "If you take mee for Narcissus y'are very sillye,
    I desire you to take mee for a daffa downe dillye;
    For so I rose, and so I am in trothe,
    As may appeare by the flower in my mouthe."

Echo gives her reasons somewhat confidentially:

    "But ho, the hobby horse, youle think't absurde
    That I should of my selfe once speake a woord.
    'Tis true; but lett your wisdomes tell me than,
    How'de you know Eccho from another man?"

And at the conclusion of the play she kindly directs the imagination of
the spectators into the right channel:

    "Now auditors of intelligence quicke,
    I pray you suppose that Eccho is sicke"----

and craves their applause by a skilful ruse.

Tiresias makes his exit at an early stage in the play, addressing
congratulations to himself:

    "Goe, thou hast done, Tyresias; bidd adieu;
    Thy part is well plaid and thy wordes are true."

As a last instance of this naïve custom, Florida's words at the end of
the short part assigned to herself and Clois may be cited:

    "Looke you for maids no more, our parte is done,
    Wee come but to be scornd, and so are gone."

Both the songs contained in the play have a considerable amount of
vivacity and vigour, though they fall short of actual lyrical beauty.
The first and longer of the two is a drinking-song with a refrain of
eight lines, written in a lively and irregular, but not ill-handled
metre; the second, a hunting-song of five stanzas, with the chorus
"Yolp" in imitation of the cry of the dogs. Besides these, which may
very possibly have been in existence before the play was written, the
effusion of Dorastus on meeting Narcissus ("Cracke eye strings cracke,"
l. 305) is lyrical in character.

Taken as a whole, it will be seen that the comedy of _Narcissus_ is
rather interesting for its quaintness, its humour, and its apparent
borrowings from, and undoubted resemblances to, Shakspere, than for any
intrinsic literary value. In spite of this, I cannot but hope that those
who now study it for the first time, though they may have "seene a
farre better play at the theater," will not find reason to condemn it as
wholly dull and unprofitable.


It only remains to say a few words with regard to the four pieces which
I have included in the present volume.

These occur in the same MS. as the _Narcissus_, and taken with it appear
to form a united group, by virtue of their common connection with S.
John's College. It is true that the Porter who acts so prominent a part
in the admission of the supposed players reveals to us only his
Christian name, Frances (see last line of Epilogue), but it is hardly
possible to doubt his identity with the Francke (or Francis) Clarke, the
porter of S. John's, to whom the remarkable productions above-mentioned
are attributed. After several vain attempts to discover the record of
this man's tenure of office, I have chanced upon his name in Mr. A.
Clark's _Register of the University of Oxford_, vol. ii. (1571-1622),
pt. 1, p. 398, where it occurs in the list of "personæ privilegiatæ," a
term including, in its widest sense, all persons who enjoyed the
immunities conferred by charter on the corporation of the University,
but technically used to describe certain classes to whom these
immunities were granted by special favour; as, for example, the college
servants, of whom the manciple, cook, and porter or janitor, were
amongst the chief.

The entry is as follows:

    "8 May 1601, S. Jo., Clark, Francis; Worc., pleb. f., 24; 'janitor.'"

From this we gather that Francis Clark had not been long appointed to
his office; that he was twenty-four years of age, a Worcestershire man,
and of humble birth.

Judging by the internal evidence of the MS. now under consideration, we
may very naturally suppose that the porter, a worthy possessed of a
shrewd wit and somewhat combative temperament, enjoyed high favour
amongst the undergraduates, though often in disgrace with their
superiors; and that for his benefit (in the case of the first and fourth
pieces), and for their own (in the case of the third), the wags of the
college composed certain apologies, which Francis Clarke was clever
enough to commit to memory, and confident enough to pronounce before the
Head in the character of a privileged humourist. The last of the pieces
seems to have been written down and delivered as a letter; and some or
all may be the products of the same pen as wrote the _Narcissus_. That
they were not written by the porter himself is evident; for over and
above the mere improbability that a college servant would be capable of
such frequent reference to Lilly, we have the testimony of the headings,
two of which bear mention of "a speech _made for_ the foresaid porter,"
and "a letter _composed for_ Francke Clarke." It is very possible that
the porter's part in the _Narcissus_ may have been specially designed
for, and entrusted to, the worthy Francis.

       *       *       *       *       *

Of these four pieces, the apology addressed to "Master President, that
had sconc't him 10 groates for lettinge the fidlers into the hall at
Christmas," occurs next to the play in the MS., and was probably the
result of some mock trial and sentence forming a part of the Christmas
festivities. If we could suppose the "fidlers" to have been the same as
the players, a still closer connection would be established between
this speech and the comedy; but there is no mention of any dramatic
entertainment in the circumstantial account of their entrance and exit
given by the porter.

The other pieces have no apparent connection with Christmas time, and
the last, being addressed to Laud during the year of his proctorship,
fixes its own date as 1603-4. The speech _To the Ladie Keneda_ is the
most puzzling of the group, inasmuch as it bears no reference to
collegiate life, and deals with a subject of some obscurity. _Kennedy_
was the family name of the earls of Cassilis; and the fifth earl, then
living, had married in 1597 Jean, daughter of James, fourth Lord
Fleming, and widow of Lord Chancellor Maitland. But whether she is the
"Ladie Keneda" to whom Francis Clarke pleads on behalf of her cook
Piers, it is impossible to say. Neither have I found out anything
concerning the annual holiday for cooks, to which allusion seems to be
made. Here, however, as in the other speeches, a wide margin must be
allowed for euphuism, and bare facts are difficult to deduce.

I have refrained from supplying references to the numerous classical
quotations with which the speeches are embellished, for the simple
reason that a contemporary edition of Lilly's Grammar will be found to
include them all. Doubtless the youthful composers derived a special
delight from the process of making "Lilly leape out of his skinne," with
a "muster of sentences" of which the porter's supposed use and
interpretation is, if not always scholarly, at least decidedly


ANNO 1602.

_Enter the_ Porter _at the end of supper._


    MASTER and Mistris with all your guests, [F. 81v rev.]
    God save you, heerin the matter rests;
    Christmas is now at the point to bee past,
    'Tis giving vp the ghost & this is the last;
    And shall it passe thus without life or cheere?
    This hath not beene seene this many a yeere.
    If youl have any sporte, then say the woord,
    Heere come youths of the parish that will it affoord,
    They are heere hard by comminge alonge,
    Crowning their wassaile bowle with a songe:                     [10]
    They have some other sport too out of dowbt,
    Let mee alone, & I will finde it out.
    I am your porter & your vassaile,
    Shall I lett in the boyes with their wassaile?
    Say: they are at doore, to sing they beginne,
    Goe to then, Ile goe & lett them in!

_Enter the wassaile, two of them bearinge the bowle, & singinge the
songe, & all of them bearing the burden._

_The Songe._

    Gentills all
    Both great & small,
    Sitt close in the hall
        And make some roome,                                        [20]
    For amongst you heere
    At the end of your cheere
    With our countrey beare
        Wee ar bold to come.
            Heers then a full carowse,
            Let it goe about the house,
            While wee doe carrye it thus
                'Tis noe great labour.
            Heave it vpp merilye, [F. 81r rev.]
            Let care & anger flye,                                  [30]
            A pinne for povertye;
                Drinke to your neighbour.

    Those that are wise,
    Doe knowe that with spice
    God Bacchus his iuyce
        Is wholsome & good.
    It comforts age,
    It refresheth the sage,
    It rebateth rage,
        And cheereth the bloud.                                     [40]
            Heeres then a full, &c.

    Take it with quicknes,
    Tis phisicke for sicknes,
    It driveth the thicknes
        Of care from the harte;
    The vaynes that are empty
    It filleth with plenty,
    Not one amongst twenty
        But it easeth of smarte.
            Heers then a full, &c.                                  [50]

    Are you sadd,
    For fortune badd,
    And would bee gladd
        As ever you were,
    If that a quaffe
    Doe not make you laffe,
    Then with a staffe
        Drive mee out of dore.
            Heers then a full, &c.

    To tell you his merritts,                                       [60]
    Good thoughts it inherites,
    It raiseth the spirritts
        And quickens the witt;
    It peoples the veyns,
    It scoureth the reynes,
    It purgeth the braines
        And maks all things fitte.
            Heers then a full, &c.

    It makes a man bold,
    It keepes out the cold;                                         [70]
    Hee hath all things twice told
        Vnto his comforte,
    Hee stands in the middle,
    The world, hey dery diddle,
    Goes round without a fiddle
        To make them sporte.
            Heers then a full carowse, &c.

    _Por._ Why well said, my ladds of mettall, this is [F. 80v rev.]
    somwhat yett, 'tis trimlye done; but what sporte, what merriment,
    all dead, no vertue extant?                                     [80]

    _Pri[mus]._ Pray, sir, gett our good Mistris to bestowe something on
    us, & wee ar gone.

    _Por._ Talke of that _tempore venturo_; there's no goinge to any
    other houses now, your bowle is at the bottome, & that which is left
    is for mee.

    _Sec[undus]._ Nay, good Master Porter.

    _Por._ Come, come, daunce vs a morrice, or els goe sell fishe; I
    warrant youle make as good a night of it heere as if you had beene
    at all the houses in the towne.

    _Ter[tius]._ Nay, pray letts goe, wee can doe nothinge.         [90]

    _Por._ Noe! What was that I tooke you all a gabling tother day in
    mother Bunches backside by the well there, when Tom at Hobses ranne
    vnder the hovell with a kettle on's head?

    _Pri._ Why, you would not have a play, would you?

    _Por._ Oh, by all meanes, 'tis your onely fine course. About it,
    ladds, a the stampe, I warrante you a reward sufficient; I tell you,
    my little windsuckers, had not a certaine melancholye ingendred with
    a nippinge dolour overshadowed the sunne shine of my mirthe, I had
    beene I pre, sequor, one of your consorte. But [F. 80r rev.]   [100]
    wheres gooddy Hubbardes sonne--I saw him in his mothers holliday
    cloaths eennow?

    _Sec._ Doe you heere, Master Porter, wee have pittifull nailes in
    our shooes; you were best lay something on the grounde, els wee
    shall make abhominable scarrs in the face on't.

    _Por.  Rem tenes_; well, weele thinke on't.

    _Ter._ It is a most condolent tragedye wee shall move.

    _Por.  Dictum puta; satis est quod suffocat._                 [110]

    _Sec._ In faith, I tickle them for a good voice.

    _Por.  Sufficiente quantitate_, a woord is enough to the wise.

    _Pri._ You have noe butterd beare in the house, have yee?

    _Por._ No, no, trudge, some of the guests are one the point to bee

    _Sec._ Have you ere a gentlewomans picture in the house, or noe?

    _Por._ Why?                                                    [120]

    _Sec._ If you have, doe but hange it yonder, & twill make mee act in

    _Por._ Well then, away about your geere.


_Enter Prologue._

    Wee are noe vagabones, wee ar no arrant
      Rogues that doe runne with plaies about the country.
    Our play is good, & I dare farther warrant [F. 79v rev.]
      It will make you more sport then catt in plum tree.
        Wee are no saucye common playenge skipiackes,
        But towne borne lads, the kings owne lovely subiects.

    This is the night, night latest of the twelve,                 [130]
      Now give vs leave for to bee blith & frolicke,
    To morrow wee must fall to digg & delve;
      Weele bee but short, long sittinge breeds the collicke.
        Then wee beginne, & lett none hope to hisse vs,
        The play wee play is Ovid's owne Narcissus.


    [_Cep._] Open thine eares, my sonne, open I bidd
    To heare the sound saw which the sage shall reed,
    I meane the sage Tyresias, my ducke,
    Which shall lay ope to thee thy lott, thy lucke.
    Thy father I, Cephisus, that brave river                       [140]
    Who is all water, doe like water shiver.
    As any man of iudgment may descrye
    By face, hands washt, & bowle, thy father I.

    _Lyr._ And I thy mother nimphe, as may bee seene
    By coulours that I weare, blew, white, & greene;
    For nimphes ar of the sea, & sea is right
    Of colour truly greene & blew & white;
    Would you knowe how, I pray? Billowes are blew,
    Water is greene, & foome is white of hue.

    _Cep._ Wee both bidd the, Narcisse, our dearest child,         [150]
    With count'nance sober, modest lookes & milde,
    To prophett's wisest woords with tention harken; [F. 79r rev.]
    But Sunne is gonne & welkin gins to darken,
    Vulcan the weary horses is a shooinge,
    While Phebus with queene Thetis is a doinge:
    Prophett comes not, letts goe both all & some,
    Wee may goe home like fooles as wee did come.

    _Lyr._ O stay deare husband, flowe not away bright water,
    The prophett will come by sooner or later.

    _Cep._ Why stand wee heere, as it were cappes a thrumming,     [160]
    To look for prophett? Prophett is not comminge.

    _Nar._ Sweete running river which Cephisus hight,
    Whose water is so cleare, whose waves so bright,
    Gold is thy sand and christall is thy current,
    Thy brooke so cleare that no vile wind dare stirre in't;
    Thou art my father, & thou, sweetest nimphe,
    Thou art my mother, I thy sonne, thy shrimpe.
    Agree you in one point, to goe or tarrye,
    Narcissus must obey, aye, must hee, marye.

    _Cep._ Gush, water, gush! runne, river, from thy channell!     [170]
    Thou hast a sonne more lovinge then a spanniell;
    With watry eyes I see how tis expedient
    To have a sonne so wise & so obedient.
    Most beauteous sonne, yet not indeede so beautifull
    As thou art mannerly & dutifull!

    _Lyr._ See, husband, see, O see where prophett blind
    In twice good time is comming heere behind.

    _Cep._ O heere hee is, and now that hee's come nye vs,
    Lye close, good wife & sonne, least hee espye vs.


    All you that see mee heere in byshoppes rochett, [F. 78v rev.] [180]
    And I see not, your heads may runne on crotchett,
    For ought I knowe, to knowe what manner wight
    In this strange guise I am, or how I hight;
    I am Tyresias, the not seeing prophett,
    Blinde though I bee, I pray lett noe man scoffe it:
    For blind I am, yea, blind as any beetle,
    And cannot see a whitt, no, nere so little.
    Heere ar no eyes, why, they ar in my minde,
    Wherby I see the fortunes of mankind;
    Who made mee blind? Jove? I may say to you noe;                [190]
    But it was Joves wife & his sister Juno.
    Juno & Jove fell out, both biggest gods,
    And I was hee tooke vpp the merrye oddes.
    You knowe it all, I am sure, 'tis somewhat common,
    And how besides seven yeares I was a woman;
    Which if you knowe you doe know all my state:
    Come on, Ile fold the fortune of your fate.

    _Lyr._ Tremblinge, Tyresias, I pray you cease to travell,
    And rest a little on the groundy gravell.

    _Tyr._ Who ist calls? Speake, for I cannot see.                [200]

    _Cep._ Poore frends, sir, to the number of some three.

    _Tyr._ What would you have?

    _Cep._ Why, sir, this is the matter,
    To bee plaine with you & not to flatter;
    I am the stately river hight Cephise,
    Smoother then glasse & softer farre then ice; [F. 78r rev.]
    This nimphe before you heere whom you doe see
    Is my owne wife, yclipt Lyriope.
    Though with the dawbe of prayse I am loath to lome her,
    This Ile assure you, the blind poett Homer                     [210]
    Saw not the like amongst his nimphes and goddesses,
    Nor in his Iliads, no, nor in his Odysses.
    Thinke not, I pray, that wee are come for nought;
    Our lovely infant have wee to you brought.
    The purple hew of this our iolly striplynge
    I would not have you thinke was gott with tiplinge;
    Hee is our sonne Narcisse, no common varlett,
    Nature in graine hath died his face in skarlett.
    Speak then, I pray you, speake, for wee you portune
    That you would tell our sunnfac't sonne his fortune.           [220]

    _Lyr._ Doe not shrink backe, Narcissus, come & stand,
    Hold vpp & lett the blind man see thy hand.

    _Tyr._ Come, my young sonne, hold vp & catch audacitye;
    I see thy hand with the eyes of my capacitye.
    Though I speake riddles, thinke not I am typsye,
    For what I speake I learnde it of a gipsye,
    And though I speak hard woords of curromanstike,
    Doe not, I pray, suppose that I am franticke.
    The table of thy hand is somewhat ragged,
    Thy mensall line is too direct and cragged,                    [230]
    Thy line of life, my sonne, is to, to breife,
    And crosseth Venus girdle heere in cheife,
    And heere (O dolefull signe) is overthwarte
    In Venus mount a little pricke or warte. [F. 77v rev.]
    Besides heere, in the hillocke of great Jupiter,
    Monnsieur la mors lyes lurking like a sheppbiter;
    What can I make out of this hard construction
    But dolefull dumpes, decay, death, & destruction?

    _Cep._ O furious fates, O three thread-thrumming sisters,
    O fickle fortune, thou, thou art the mistres                   [240]
    Of this mishapp; why am I longer liver?
    Runne river, runne, & drowne thee in the river.

    _Tyr._ Then sith to thee, my sonne, I doe pronounce ill,
    It shall behove thee for to take good counsell,
    And that eft soone; wisdoome they say is good,
    Your parents ambo have done what they coode,
    They can but bringe horse to the water brinke,
    But horse may choose whether that horse will drinke.

    _Lyr._ Oh say, thou holy preist of high Apollo,
    What harme, what hurt, what chaunge, what chaunce, will        [250]
    That if wee can wee may provide a plaster
    Of holsome hearbes to cure this dire disaster.

    _Tyr._ If I should tell you, you amisse would iudge it;
    I have one salve, one medecine, in my budgett,
    And that is this, since you will have mee tell,
    If hee himselfe doe never knowe; farewell. [_Exit_ TYR.

    _Lyr._ Mary come out, is his ould noddle dotinge?
    Heere is an ould said saw well woorth the notinge;
    Shall hee not know himselfe? Who shall hee then? [F. 77r rev.]
    My boy shall knowe himselfe from other men,                    [260]
    I, & my boy shall live vntill hee dye,
    In spight of prophett & in spight of pye.
    It is an ould sawe: That it is too late
    When steede is stolne to shutt the stable gate;
    Therfore take heed; yet I bethinke at Delph,
    One Phibbus walls is written: Knowe thyselfe.
    Shall hee not know himselfe, and so bee laught on,
    When as Apollo cries, gnotti seauton? [_Exeunt._


    Come, prethy lett vs goe: come, Clinias, come,
    And girt thy baskett dagger to thy bumme;                      [270]
    Lett vs, I say, bee packinge, and goe meete
    The poore blind prophett stalking in the streete:
    Lett us be iogginge quickly.

    _Cli._ Peace, you asse,
    I smell the footinge of Tyresias.


    _Dor._ O thou which hast thy staffe to bee thy tutor,
    Whose head doth shine with bright hairs white as pewter,
    Like silver moone, when as shee kist her minion
    In Late-mouse mont, the swaine yclipt Endimion,
    Who, beeing cald Endimion the drowsye,                         [280]
    Slept fifty yeers, & for want of shift was lowsye; [F. 76v rev.]
    O thou whose breast, I, even this little cantle,
    Is counsells capcase, prudences portmantle,
    O thou that pickest wisdome out of guttes
    As easy as men doe kernells out of nuttes,
    Looke in our midriffs, & I pray you tell vs
    Whether wee two shall live & dye good fellowes.

    _Tyr._ How doe you both?

    _Dor._ Well, I thanke you.

    _Tyr._ Are you not sicklye?                                    [290]

    _Cli._ Noe, I thanke God.

    _Tyr._ Yet you shall both dye quicklye.
    Goe, thou hast done, Tyresias; bidd adiew; [_Exit._
    Thy part is well plaid & thy wordes are true.

    _Dor._ Shall wee dye quickly, both? I pray what coulour?
    Ile bee a diar, thou shalt be a fuller;
    Weele cozin the prophett, I my life will pawne yee,
    Thou shalt dye whyte, & Ile dye oreng tawnye.

_Enter_ NARCISSUS _walkinge_.

    _Cli._ O eyes, what see you? Eyes, bee ever bloud shedd
    That turne your Master thus into a codshead.                   [300]
    O eyes, noe eyes, O instruments, O engines,
    That were ordain'd to worke your Master's vengeance!
    His huge orentall beawty melts my eyeballs
    Into rayne dropps, even as sunne doth snowballes.

     _Dor._ Cracke eye strings, cracke, [F. 76r rev.]
      Runne eyes, runne backe,
        My lovely brace of beagles;
      Looke no more on
      Yon shininge sunne,
        For your eyes are not eagles.                              [310]
      Leave off the chace
      My pretty brace,
        And hide you in your kennell,
      And hunt no more,
      Your sight is sore;
        Oh that I had some fennell!

    _Nar._ Leave off to bragg, thou boy of Venus bredd,
    I am as faire as thou, for white & redd;
    If then twixt mee & thee theres no more oddes,
    Why I on earth & thou amongst the goddes?                      [320]

    _Cli._ Thy voice, Narcisse, so softly & so loude,
    Makes in mine eares more musicke then a crowde
    Of most melodious minstrells, & thy tonge
    Is edged with silver, & with iewells strunge;
    Thy throate, which speaketh ever & anan,
    Is farre more shriller then the pipe of Pan,
    Thy weasand pipe is clearer then an organ,
    Thy face more faire then was the head of Gorgon,
    Thy haire, which bout thy necke so faire dishevells,
    Excells the haire of the faire queene of devills,              [330]
    And thy perfumed breath farr better savours
    Then does the sweat hot breath of blowing Mavors;
    Thy azur'd veynes blewer then Saturne shine,
    And what are Cupids eyes to those of thine? [F. 75v rev.]
    Thy currall cheeks hath a farre better lustre
    Then Ceres when the sunne in harvest bust her;
    Silenus for streight backe, & I can tell yee,
    You putt downe Bacchus for a slender bellye.
    To passe from braunch to barke, from rine to roote,
    Venus her husband hath not such a foote.                       [340]

    _Dor._ O thou whose cheeks are like the skye so blewe,
    Whose nose is rubye, of the sunnlike hue,
    Whose forhead is most plaine without all rinkle,
    Whose eyes like starrs in frosty night doe twinkle,
    Most hollowe are thy eyelidds, & thy ball
    Whiter then ivory, brighter yea withall,
    Whose ledge of teeth is farre more bright then jett is,
    Whose lipps are too, too good for any lettice,
    O doe thou condiscend vnto my boone,
    Graunt mee thy love, graunt it, O silver spoone,               [350]
    Silver moone, silver moone.

    _Cli._ Graunt mee thy love, to speake I first begunne,
    Graunt mee thy love, graunt it, O golden sunne.

    _Nar._ Nor sunne, nor moone, nor twinkling starre in skye,
    Nor god, nor goddesse, nor yet nimphe am I,
    And though my sweete face bee sett out with rubye,
    You misse your marke, I am a man as you bee.

    _Dor._ A man, Narcisse, thou hast a manlike figure;
    Then bee not like vnto the savage tiger, [F. 75r rev.]
    So cruell as the huge camelion,                                [360]
    Nor yet so changing as small elephant.
    A man, Narcisse, then bee not thou a wolfe,
    To devoure my hart in thy mawes griping gulfe,
    Bee none of these, & lett not nature vaunt her
    That shee hath made a man like to a panther;
    A man thou art, Narcisse, & soe are wee,
    Then love thou vs againe as wee love thee.

    _Nar._ A man I am, & sweare by gods above
    I cannot yett find in my heart to love.

    _Dor._ Cannott find love in hart! O search more narrowe,       [370]
    Thou well shalt knowe him by his ivory arrowe;
    That arrowe, when in breast, my bloud was tunninge,
    Broacht my harts barrell, sett it all a runninge,
    Which with loves liquor vnles thou doe staunch,
    All my lifes liquor will runne out my paunche.

    _Nar._ Why would you have mee love? You talke most oddlye,
    Love is a naughty thinge & an ungodlye.

    _Cli._ Is love ungodlye? Love is still a god.

    _Nar._ But in his nonage allwaies vnder rodde.

    _Amb._ O love, Narcissus, wee beseech thee, O love.            [380]

    _Nar._ Noe love, good gentiles, Ile assure you, noe love.

[_Exeunt_ DORASTUS _et_ CLINIAS, _ambulat_ NARCISSUS.


    Clois, what ist I wis that I doe see, [F. 74v rev.]
    What forme doth charme this storme within my breast,
    What face, what grace, what race may that same bee,
    So faire, so rare, debonaire, breeds this vnrest?
    How white, how bright, how light, like starre of Venus
    His beames & gleames so streames so faire between vs!

    _Clo._ 'Tis Venus sure, why doe wee stand and palter?
    Lett vs goe shake our thighes vpon the altar.

    _Flo._ Most brightest Hasparus, for thou seemst to mee soe,    [390]
    I, and in very deed thou well maist bee soe,
    For as bigg as a man is every plannett,
    Although it seemes a farre that wee may spanne it,
    Shine thou on mee, sweet plannet, bee soe good
    As with thy fiery beames to warme my bloud;
    Ile beare thee light, and thinke light of the burthen,
    And say, light plannett neare was heavy lurden.

    _Nar._ To speake the truth, faire maid, if you will have vs,
    O Oedipus I am not, I am Davus.

    _Clo._ Good Master Davis, bee not so discourteous              [400]
    As not to heare a maidens plaint for vertuous.

    _Nar._ Speake on a Gods name, so love bee not the theame.

    _Flo._ O, whiter then a dish of clowted creame,
    Speake not of love? How can I overskippe
    To speake of love to such a cherrye lippe?

    _Nar._ It would beseeme a maidens slender vastitye
    Never to speake of any thinge but chastitye.

    _Flo._ As true as Helen was to Menela
    So true to thee will bee thy Florida. [F. 74r rev.]

    _Clo._ As was to trusty Pyramus truest Thisbee                 [410]
    So true to you will ever thy sweete Clois bee.

    _Flo._ O doe not stay a moment nor a minute,
    Loves is a puddle, I am ore shooes in it.

    _Clo._ Doe not delay vs halfe a minutes mountenance
    That ar in love, in love with thy sweet countenance.

    _Nar._ Then take my dole although I deale my alms ill,
    Narcissus cannot love with any damzell;
    Although, for most part, men to love encline all,
    I will not, I, this is your answere finall.
    And so farwell; march on doggs, love's a griper,               [420]
    If I love any, 'tis Tickler & Piper.
    Ah, the poore rascall, never ioyd it since
    His fellow iugler first was iugled hence,
    Iugler the hope; but now to hunte abraode,
    Where, if I meete loves little minitive god,
    Ile pay his breech vntill I make his bumme ake,
    For why, the talke of him hath turnd my stomacke. [_Exit._

    _Flo._ And is hee gone? Letts goe & dye, sweet Cloris,
    For poets of our loves shall write the stories.

_Enter_ CLINIAS, DORASTUS, _meeting them_.

    _Cli._ Well mett, faire Florida sweete, which way goe you?     [430]

    _Flo._ In faith, sweete Clinias, I cannot knowe you. [F. 73v rev.]

    _Dor._ Noe, knowe, but did you see the white Narcisse?

    _Clo._ The whitest man alive a huntinge is;
    Hee that doth looke farre whiter then the vilett,
    Or moone at midday, or els skye at twilight.

    _Cli._ That is the same, even that is that Narcissus,
    Hee that hath love despis'd, & scorned vs.

    _Flo._ Not you alone hee scornes, but vs also;
    O doe not greive when maids part stakes in woe.
    O, that same youthe's the scummer of all skorne,               [440]
    Of surquedry the very shooing horne,
    Piller of pride, casting topp of contempt,
    Stopple of statelines for takinge vente.
    Many youthes, many maids sought him to gaine,
    Noe youthes, noe maids could ever him obtaine:
    Then thus I pray, & hands to heaven vpp leave,
    So may hee love & neare his love atcheive.
    Looke you for maids no more, our parte is done,
    Wee come but to bee scornd, & so are gone. [_Exeunt_.

    _Dor._ But wee have more to doe, that have wee perdie,         [450]
    Wee must a fish & hunt the hare so hardye,
    For even as after hare runnes swiftest beagle,
    So doth Narcissus our poore harts corneagle. [_Exeunt_.

_Enter_ ECCHO.

    Who, why, wherfore, from whence or what I am, [F. 73r rev.]
    Knowe, if you aske, that Eccho is my name,
    That cannott speake a woord, nor halfe a sillable,
    Vnles you speake before so intelligible.
    But ho, the hobby horse, youle think 't absurde
    That I should of my selfe once speake a woord.
    'Tis true; but lett your wisdomes tell me than                 [460]
    How'de you know Eccho from another man?
    I was a well toung'd nimphe, but what of that?
    My mother Juno still to hold in chatte,
    With tales of tubbes, from thence I ever strove,
    Whiles nimphes abroad lay allwaies vnder Jove.
    But oh, when drift was spied, my angry grammer
    Made ever since my tottering tongue to stammer;
    And now, in wild woods, & in moist mountaines,
    In high, tall valleys, & in steepye plaines,
    Eccho I live, Eccho, surnam'd the dolefull,                    [470]
    That, in remembrance, now could weepe a bowlfull;
    Or rather, if you will, Eccho the sorrowfull,
    That, in remembrance, now could weepe a barrowfull.
    (_Within. Yolp! yolpe!_) [_Exit clamans Yolpe!_



    Harke, they crye, I heare by that
    The doggs have putt the hare from quatte,
    Then woe bee vnto little Watt, [F. 72v rev.]
      Yolp, yolp, yolp, yolp!

    Hollowe in the hind doggs, hollowe,
    So come on then, solla, solla,
    And lett vs so blithly followe,                                [480]
      Yolp, &c.

    O, the doggs ar out of sight,
    But the crye is my delight;
    Harke how Jumball hitts it right,
      Yolp, &c.

    Over briars, over bushes;
    Whose affeard of pricks & pushes,
    Hee's no hunter woorth two rushes,
      Yolp, &c.

    But how long thus shall wee wander?                            [490]
    O, the hares a lusty stander,
    Follow apace, the doggs are yonder,
      Yolp, &c.                       [_Exeunt._

_Enter one with a buckett and boughes and grasse._

    A well there was withouten mudd,
    Of silver hue, with waters cleare,
    Whome neither sheepe that chawe the cudd,
    Shepheards nor goates came ever neare;
    Whome, truth to say, nor beast nor bird,
    Nor windfalls yet from trees had stirrde.
          [_He strawes the grasse about the buckett._
    And round about it there was grasse, [F. 72r rev.]             [500]
    As learned lines of poets showe,
    Which by next water nourisht was; [_Sprinkle water._
    Neere to it too a wood did growe, [_Sets down the bowes._
    To keep the place, as well I wott,
    With too much sunne from being hott.
    And thus least you should have mistooke it,
    The truth of all I to you tell:
    Suppose you the well had a buckett,
    And so the buckett stands for the well;
    And 'tis, least you should counte mee for a sot O,             [510]
    A very pretty figure cald _pars pro toto_. [_Exit._

_Enter_ DORASTUS, ECCHO _answeringe him within_.

    _Dor._ Narcissus?
        _Ecc._ Kisse us.
    Kisse you; who are you, with a botts take you?
        Botts take you.
    Botts take mee, you rogue?
        You rogue.
    Slidd, hee retortes woord for woord.
        Woord for woord.
    Clinias, prethy, where art thou, Clinias?                      [520]
        In, yee asse.
    In where--in a ditch?
    What is his businesse? [F. 71v rev.]
        At his businesse.
    You don't tell mee trulye.
        You lye.
    Say so againe, ile cudgell you duely.
        You doe lye.
    Of your tearmes you are very full.                             [530]
        Your a very foole.
    Doe you crowe, I shall cracke your coxcombe.
    I shall make you whine & blubber.
    Youle make an end & dispatch.
    Goe to, youle let these woordes passe.
    If I come to you Ile make you singe a palinodye.               [540]
    Foole, coxcombe, lubber, patch, & noddye,
    Are these good woords to give a bodye?
    Doe not provoke me, I shall come.
    Meete mee if you dare.
        If you dare.
    I come, despaire not.
        Spare not. [_Exit._

_Enter_ CLINIAS, ECCHO _answeringe within_. [F. 71r rev.]

    _Cli._ Dorastus, where art thou, Dorastus?                     [550]
        _Ecc._ Asse to vs.
    Asse to you, whose that's an asse to you?
    Know mee for what I am, as good as your selfe.
    Elfe! Why I hope you ben't so malaparte.
        All a parte.
    All apart, yes, wee ar alone; but you doe not meane to fight,
      I trust in Jove?
        Trust in Jove.                                             [560]
    Jove helpes then if wee fight, but wee trust to our swoordes.
    Woordes; why, doe you thinke tis your woordes shall vs affright?
    'Tis noe such matter, you are mightely out.
    Lout, dost abuse mee so? Goe to, y'are a scall scabbe.
        Rascall scabbe.                                            [570]
    Rascall scabbe, why thou groome base & needye!
    Slidd, if I meete you Ile bange you.
        Hange you.
    Ist so; nay then, Ile bee at hand, kee pickpurse. [F. 70v rev.]
    Dare you vse mee thus to my face, spidar?
        I dare.
    But will you stand too't & not flintch?
        Not flinch.                                                [580]
    Well, meete mee, I am like iron & steele, trustye.
    Rusty, what, mocke mee to my face againe?
        Asse againe.
    Out of dowbt, if wee meete I shall thee boxe.
    Why, the foole rides mee, I am spurrgald & iolted.
    Jolthead! this is more then I can brooke.
        Rooke.                                                     [590]
    Rooke too, nay then, as farr as a knockinge goes I am yours to
      commaund, sir.
        Come on, sir. [_Exit._


    O, I am weary; I have runne to daye
    Ten miles, nay, 10 & a quarter I dare saye.
    You may beleeve it, for my ioyntes are numme,
    And every finger truly is a thumbe.
    For my younge hunters, Clinias & Dorastus,
    Surely so farre to day they have out past vs, [F. 70r rev.]
    That heere I am encompast round about,                         [600]
    And doe not knowe the way nor in nor out.
    What Holla, holla!
      _Ecc._ Holla, holla.
    Is any body nye?
    Come neere.
        Come neere.
    I prethy helpe mee foorth, els I am the rude woods forfeiture. [610]
        Faire feature.
    O lord, sir, tis but your pleasure to call it soe.
        Its soe.
    I had rather have your counsell how to gett out of this laborinthe.
        Labour in't.
    Labour in't, why soe I doe, sore against my will, but to labour out
      of it what shall I doe?
        Doe.                                                       [620]
    Nay, pray helpe mee out if you love mee.
        Love mee.
    Come neere, then, why doe you flye?
        Why doe you flye?
    Where b'ye?
        [F. 69v rev.] Heerbye.
    Let vs come together.
        Let vs come together.
    I prethy come.
        I come.                                                    [630]
    Let mee dye first ere thou meddle with mee.
        Meddle with mee. [_Exit._

_Enter_ DORASTUS, CLINIAS, _at_ 2 _doores_.

    _Cli._ Wast you, Dorastus, mockt mee all this season?

    _Dor._ Pray, Clinias, hold your tounge, y'haue little reason
    To make a foole of mee & mocke mee too.

    _Cli._ Nay, sir, twas you that mockt mee, so you doe;
    While heere I cald for you by greenwood side,
    You gibde on mee, which you shall deare abide.

    _Dor._ Nay, you did call mee, that I was loath to heare,
    Truly such woords as a dogg would not beare.                   [640]
    But as I scorne so to bee ast & knaved,
    Soe truly doe I scorne to bee outbraved.

    _Cli._ O frieng panne of all fritters of fraud,
    My scindifer, that longe hath beene vndrawde,
    Shall come out of his sheath most fiery hott,
    And slice thee small, even as hearbes to pott.

    _Dor._ Thou huge & humminge humblebee, thou hornett,
    Come doe thy worst, I say that I doe scorne it.

    _Cli._ O with thy bloud Ile make so redd my whineard,
    As ripest liquor is of grapes in vineyearde. [F. 69r rev.]     [650]

    _Dor._ And with thy bloud Ile make my swoord so ruddye,
    As skye at eventide shall not bee soe bloudye.
                                           [_They fight & fall._

    _Cli._ O, O, about my harte I feele a paine;
    Dorastus, hold thy handes, for I am slaine.

    _Dor._ This shall thy comfort bee when thou art dead,
    That thou hast kild mee too, for I am spedd.

    _Cli._ O, I am dead, depart life out of hand,
    Stray, soule, from home vnto the Stingian strand.

    _Dor._ Goe thou, my ghost, complaine thee vnto Rhadamant
    That the 3 sisters hartes are made of adamant.                 [660]

    _Cli._ Since wee must passe ore lake in Charons ferry,
    Had wee Narcissus wee should bee more merrye.

    _Dor._ My soule doth say that wee must goe before,
    Narcisse will overtake vs at the shore;
    And that that mockt vs both, deformed dwarfe,
    Will er't bee long arive at Charons wharfe.

    _Cli._ Lett us, Dorastus, die, departe, decease;
    Wee lovd in strife, & lett vs dye in peace.

    _Dor._ Stay, take mee with you, letts togither goe.

    _Am._ Vild world adieu, wee die, ô ô ô ô!                      [670]


    Does the hagg followe? Stay for her never durst I;
    Sh'as made mee runne so longe that I am thurstye,
    But O, yee gods immortall, by good fortune [F. 68v rev.]
    Heere is a well in good time & oportune;
    Drinke, drinke, Narcissus, till thy belly burst,
    Water is Rennish wine to them that thirst.
    But oh remaine & let thy christall lippe
    Noe more of this same cherrye water sippe;
    What deadly beautye or what aerye nimphe
    Is heare belowe now seated in the limphe?                      [680]
    Looke, looke, Narcissus, how his eyes are silver,
    Looke, least those eyes thy hart from thee doe pilfer,
    Yet O looke not, for by these eyes so headye,
    Thy hart from thee is filcht away allreadye;
    O Well, how oft I kisse thy wholsome liquor,
    While on my love kisses I heape a dicker.
    O love, come foorth accordinge to my mind,
    How deepe I dive yet thee I cannott find;
    O love, come foorth, my face is not so foule
    That thou shouldst scorne mee; pittye mee, poor soule.         [690]
    Well, dost thou scorne mee? Nimphes they did not soe,
    They had a better thought of mee I trowe.
    Not care of Ceres, Morpheus, nor of Bacchus,
    That is meate, drinke, & sleepe from hence shall take vs;
    Heere will I dye, this well shall bee my tombe,
    My webb is spunne; Lachesis, loppe thy loome.
                          [_Lye downe & rise vpp againe._ [F. 68r rev.]
    Tell mee, you woods, tell mee, you oakes soe stronge,
    Whether in all your life, your life so longe,
    So faire a youth pinde thus, & tell mee trulye
    Whether that any man ere lov'd so cruellye.                    [700]
    The thinge I like I see, but what I see
    And like, natheles I cannot find perdie,
    And that that greives my liver most, no seas
    Surging, mountaines, monstrous or weary ways,
    Nor walls with gates yshutt doe mee remove;
    A little water keepes mee from my love.
    Come out, come out, deare boye.

    _Ecc._ Come out, deare boye.

    [_Nar._] Thy frend I am, O doe not mee destroye;
    Thou dost putt out thy hand as I doe mine,                     [710]
    And thou dost pinke vpon mee with thine eyen,
    Smile as I smile; besides I tooke good keepe,
    And saw thee eke shedd teares when I did weepe,
    And by thy lippes moving, well I doe suppose
    Woordes thou dost speake, may well come to our nose;
    For to oure eares I am sure they never passe,
    Which makes me to crye out, alas!

    _Ecc._ Alas!

    [_Nar._] O delicate pretty youth,
        Pretty youth;                                              [720]
    Take on my woes pittye, youthe!
        Pittye, youthe!
    O sweetest boy, pray love mee! [F. 67v rev.]
        Pray love mee!
    Or els I dye for thee,
        I dye for thee!

    [_Nar._] Colour is gone & bloud in face is thinne,
    And I am naught left now but bone & skinne;
    I dye; but though I dye it shall come to passe,
    Certes it shall, that I which whilome was                      [730]
    The flower of youth, shalbee made flower againe.
    I dye; farewell, O boy belov'd in vaine.

    [_Ecc._] O boy belov'd in vaine.
                                         [NARCISSUS _risinge vp againe._
    And so I died & sunke into my grandam,
    Surnamde old earth: lett not your iudgments randome,
    For if you take mee for Narcissus y'are very sillye,
    I desire you to take mee for a daffa downe dillye;
    For so I rose, & so I am in trothe,
    As may appeare by the flower in my mouthe.

    _Ecc._ Now auditors of intelligence quicke,                    [740]
    I pray you suppose that Eccho is sicke;
    Sicke at the hart, for you must thinke,
    For lacke of love shee could nor eate nor drinke;
    Soe that of her nothinge remainde but bone,
    And that they say was turn'd into a stone.
    Onely her voice was left, as by good happe [F. 67r rev.]
    You may perceive if you imparte a clappe. [_Exit._

_Enter the_ Porter _as Epilogue_.

    Are those the ladds that would doe the deede?
    They may bee gone, & God bee their speede;
    Ile take vpp their buckett, but I sweare by the water,         [750]
    I have seene a farre better play at the theater.
    Ile shutt them out of doores, 'tis no matter for their larges;
    Thinke you well of my service, & Ile beare the charges.
    If there bee any that expecte some dances,
    'Tis I must perform it, for my name is Frances.




    _A speech made for the foresaid porter, who [F. 84r rev.]
      pronounc't it in the hall before most of the house and Master
      Præsident, that had sconc't him 10 groates for lettinge the fidlers
      into the hall at Christmas._

Ille ego qui quondam, I am hee that in ould season have made Lilly leape
out of his skinne, & with a muster of sentences out of his syntaxis have
besieged the eares of the audience in the behalfe of the wretched. But
alas!--Mihi isthic nec seritur nec metitur; it is to mee neither a
sorrye turne nor a merrye turne. I have sifted out for other mens sakes
the flower of my fancye, that I have left nothing but the branne in my
braine. And yet who is there amongst them that in the depth of my
distresse will speake for the poore porter, who meltes [10] the muses
into mourninge or turnes Parnassus into plaintes, Hellicon into
heavines, Apollo into an apollogie, for my sake? My learninge goeth not
beyond Lillye, nor my reading beyond my rules, yet have I for them so
canvast their concavitye that I have opened their entraills, so dived
into the depth of them that I have manifested their marrowe, soe pried
into their profunditye that I have plac't the verye pith of them before
you. And, alas that I should [F. 83v rev.] now speake for my
selfe, what remaines for mee but the rinde & the barke, when I have
given the roote & [20] the bodye to others? What remaines for mee but
the shell, when I have given others the substaunce, what remaines for
mee but the curdes, when I have given others the creame? Yea, what is
left for mee but the paringes, when I have given others the peares? But
I therin made knowen my valour, for you knowe, Aliorum vitia cernere
oblivisci suorum, to supplye other mens wants & to forgett his owne,
proprium est stultitiæ, is the parte of a stoute man; since then I must
speake for my selfe, Stat mihi casus renovare omnes; you shall [30]
heare the whole cause, case, and the course of it.

Sub nocte silenti, (i) in nocte vel paulo ante noctem, cum spectatur in
ignibus aurum; when you might have seene gold in the fier, the fier
shin'de so like gold, Ecce per opaca locorum, came the fidlers creeping
alonge, densa subter testudine casus, their instruments vnder their
arms, in their cases, & at lenghe, Itum est in viscera terræ, broke open
into the harte of the hall; neither when they were there could they bee
content to [F. 83r rev.] warme their fingers by the fier and bee gone,
though I [40] would have persuaded them thereto, but Iuvat vsque morari
et conferre gradum; they would needes staye & the youth daunce; but oh
to see, woe to see, that pleasure is but a pinch and felicitye but a
phillippe; when as Juvat ire per altum, some were cutting capers aloft
in the ayre, canit similiter huic, and they likewise with their
minstrelsey fitting it to their footing, all on a suddaine, Subito I may
say to them, but Repente to mee, their sporte was spoild, their musicke
marrd, their dauncinge dasht with a vox hominem sonat, with a voyce,
[50] with an awefull voice, Hæccine fieri flagitia; ar these the fruites
of the fires; statur a me, (i) sto, statur ab illis, (i) stant; they
that even now scrap't so fast with their stickes fell now to scraping
faster with their leggs; their fum fum was turn'd to mum mum, and their
pleasaunt melodye to most pittifull making of faces; but when they
look't that their fiddles should have flyen about their eares, their
calveskin cases about their calveshead pates, as the sunne shines
brightest through a shower, so did softnes in the midst of severitye:
[F. 82v rev.] there was noe more [60] said to them but, Teque his ait
eripe flammis; they were best, since they had made many mens heeles
warme with shakinge, to coole their owne by quaking without doore. But
the more mercy was shewed before, the lesse was left for mee. Had I
beene dealt with soe mercifullye, I had not neede to have come with this
exclamation, or had it beene but gratia ab officio, but a groat out of
mine office, I should not have stonied the stones nor rented the rockes
with my dolorous outcryes.

But when it shall come to denarii dicti quod denos, [70] when tenn
groats shall make a muster togeather and sitte heavy on my head, actum
est ilicet, the porter periit. O weathercoke of wretchednes that I am,
seated on the may-pole of misfortune; whither shall I turne, or to whome
shall I looke for releife? Shall I speake to my minstrells for my money?
Why, they have allready forsaken mee, to the verifieng of the ould
proverbe; Quantum quisque sua nummorum servat in arc[=a], tantum habet
et fidei; as long as a man hath money in his purse, so long hee shall
have the fidlers. What is to bee looked [80] for of them that will doe
nothing without pay, and hard-mony for their harmonye? Shall I speake to
my frends? Why: nullus ad amissas ibit amicus opes. [F. 43r rev.] Oh,
then, lett mee runne to the speare of Achilles (recorded by auncient
philosophers) which first hurt mee and last can heale mee: lett my
penitencye find pittye, and my confession move compassion; if you will
live according to rule, ever after penitet, tædet, lett miseret,
miserescit succeede.

That they came in, it was a fault of oversight in not overseeing my
office: if any should slinke by Cerberus [90] out of hell, it weare a
thing to bee wondred at, & yet wee see there doth, ther are so many
spirritts walking. If any should steale by Janus into heaven, it weare
much woorthy of marvaile, and yet wee see there doth, there are soe many
of Jupiters lemmans: if anye should skippe in or out by mee it is not to
bee admired: for why? Cerberus the porter of hell hath 3 heads, Janus
hath two, & I your poore colledg porter have but one. That they weare
not putt out of the colledge when they weare in, it was a fault; but a
fault of curtesie; for who could [100] find in his hart, when hee seeth
a man accompanied with musicke, musis comitantibus, to bidd him, Ibis
Homere foras, gett you home for an asse?

But though my breast (I must confesse) weare then somewhat [F. 42v rev.]
moved with their melodye, yet heerafter my breast shall bee marble when
they warble: Nemo sibi Mimos accipere debet favori, I will never lett in
minstrells againe vpon favour; for your selves I can say no more but
profit; & when (after this Christmas cheere is ended) you fall againe to
your studdies, I could wish that [110] Hippocrene may bee Hippocrise,
the muses Muskadine, & the Pierides pies every day for your sakes; and
as for my tenn groates, if it will please you to remitte it, I will give
you decies decem mille gratiarum. Dixi.


    _A speech delivered by Francis Clarke to the Ladie Keneda._
    [F. 46r rev.]

Noble ladye, give him leave that hath beene so bolde as to take leave,
to speake before your ladyshipp, and out of the prognosticks, not of
profound pond or deepe dale, but out of the candlesticke of mine owne
observation, to give your ladyshipp some lightning of a great thunder
that will happen in the morning.

The reason of it is a flatt, slimye, & sulphureous matter exhaled out of
the kitchins & enflamed in the highest region of the dripping pannes,
which will breed fiery commetts with much lightning and thunder. And
[10] the influence of it will so domineere in the cooks heads, that are
brought vpp under the torridd zone of the chimney, that few of them will
take rest this night, & suffer as few to take rest in the morning. They
have sett a little porch before so great an house, and have called their
show the flye. Some say because a maide comming to towne with butter was
mett by a cooke & by him deceaved in a wood neare adioyning, whose
laments the dryades and hamadriades of the place, pittieng, turned her
into a butterflie; & ever since the cooks are bound to this [20]
anniversary celebration of her metamorphosis; but soft, if the cooks
heare that the porridgpott of my mouth [F. 45v rev.] runnes over soe,
they will keele it with the ladle of reprehension; therfore I will make
hast away, onely asking this boone, which wilbee as good as a bone to
the cookes; that your ladyshipps servaunt Monsieur Piers may ride
to-morrowe with the fierye fraternitye of his fellowe cookes, & make
vpp the worthy companye of the round table, which they are resolvd not
to leave till the whole house goe rounde with them. [30]


     _A Speech spoken by Francis Clarke in the behalfe of the freshmen._

Ne sævi, magne sacerdos, bee not so severe, great session [F. 44v rev.]
holder; lett pittie prevaile over the poenitent, lett thy woords of
woormwood goe downe againe into thy throate, & so by consequence into
thy belly, but lett not those goe to the place from whence they came, &
so by cohærence to the place of exequution: and though these bee, as it
is rightly said in the rule, Turba gravis paci placidæque inimica
quieti, yet thinke what goes next before, Sis bonus ô felixque tuis: and
although I must needes say I am sorry for it that Fertur atrocia
flagitia [10] designasse, yet remember what followes immediatlye in the
place; Teque ferunt iræ poenituisse tuæ.

Your lordshipp is learned as well as I (it is bootles & I should offer
you the bootes), you knowing the Latine to expounde.

I am heere the jaylor, the Janus, the janitor; you are the judge, the
justice, the Jupiter, to this miserable companye; yet beare I not two
faces under a hoode, neither deale I doubly betweene your lordshipp &
the lewde; for though Janus & the jaylor goe together, vt bifrons, [20]
custos, yet Bos stands for a barre to distinguish the jaylor from the
theefe, vt bifrons, custos, bos, fur.

O that you weare Jupiter, to bee a helping father to these sonnes of
sorrow, or I weare Janus indeed, that I might have two tongues to
intreate for this pittifull crew. [F. 44r rev.] Looke, O thou flower of
favour, thou marigold of mercye and columbine of compassion, looke, O
looke on the dolorous dew dropps distilld from the limbecks or
loope-holes of their eyes, and plentifully powred on the flower of their
faces; O see in these (O thou most exalted [30] eldest sonne of Justice)
a lamentable example; consider that homo bulla, honor is but a blast;
pittie, O pitty the cause of these hopeles, helples, hartles and indeed
half-hanged young men; if they have erred, humanum est, they are men;
looke not thou for that of them which you can but expect of gods. Have
they spoken against the lawes of your court, why, Dolet dictum
imprudenti adolescenti et libero: has their tongue tript, why, Lingua
percurrit, it was too quicke for the witt, quicknes is commendable.
Pectora percussit, have they fought with [40] your highnes servaunts,
have they beene obstinate? Why, they have had their punishment, and
toties quoties, went either wett skind or dry beaten to bedd. Quid est
quod, in hac caus[=a] defensionis egeat; take pittie (O thou peerles
patterne of equity) if on nothing els, yet on their youth.

Some of them are heires, all of good abilitye; I beseech your lordshipp
with the rest of the ioynd stooles, I would say the bench, take my
foolish iudgment, & lett them fine for it, merce them according to their
merritts [50] [F. 43v rev.] and their purses, wee shall all fare the
better for it.

As for other punishments (I speake it with weeping teares) they have
suffered no small affliction in my keeping; Est locus in carcere quod
dungeanum appellatur; there they lay, noctes atque dies, at no great
charge, for, Constat parvo fames; but so laded with irons that I made
them Livida armis brachia, & now, see, they are come foorth after all,
Trepidus morte futura.

O miseresce malis, take pitty on the poore prisners, Patres æquum esse
censent nos iam iam; you may very [60] well remember, since yourselfe
weare in the same case. Cutt not off for some few slippes those younge
plantes of such towardnes; make not mothers weepe, winke at small
faultes, rovoke your sentence, lett the common good have their fines,
mee have my fees, they have their lives, and all shalbee well pleased.


    _A letter composd for Francke Clarke, the porter of [F. 84v rev.]
      S. John's, who in his brother's behalfe did breake one's head with
      a blacke staffe._


Worshipfull and woorthy Master Proctor, wheras I, your poore vassaile,
in charitye towardes my afflicted brother, have stepped over the shooes
of my duetye in participatinge or accommodatinge my blacke staffe to the
easinge of his over-charged artickles & members, wherby I have iustlye
plucked the oulde house, or rather the maine beame of your indignation,
upon my impotent and impudent shoulders, I doe now beseech you upon the
knees of my sorrowfullnes and marybones of repentance to forgive mee all
delictes & crimes as have beene [10] formerly committed.

And wheras you, contrary to my desertes, have out of the bottomles pitt
of your liberalitye restored mee out of the porters lodge of miserye
into the tower of fælicitie, by giving that which was due from mee
(silly mee) vnto your worshippfull selfe, I meane my ladye pecunia; lett
mee intreate you that I may burden the leggs of your liberalitie so
much farther, as to deliver mee the afore-said blacke staffe, without
which I am a man & noe beast, a wretch & no porter. But wheras it is
thus [20] by my most vnfortunate fate, that so woorthy a President [F.
85r rev.] hath seene so vnworthy a present, I cannott but condole my
tragedies, committing you to the profunditye or abisse of your
liberalitie, & my selfe to the 3 craues of my adversitie. Dixi.



Line 1. _Master and Mistris._--Doubtless the President of S. John's and
his wife. The office was held at this time by Ralph Hutchinson, who had
been elected to it in 1590, after holding for some years the college
living of Charlbury, Oxon. Little seems to be known of Mrs. Hutchinson
beyond the fact that after her husband's death in 1606 she placed his
effigy in the college chapel.

Line 39. _Rebateth._--To rebate, to blunt or disedge; see _Measure for
Measure_, i. 4, 60--"Doth rebate and blunt his natural edge."

Line 55. _Quaffe._--The substantival use of this word is not uncommon in
contemporary writings. Cf., in 1579, L. Tomson, Calvin's _Sermons on
Timothy, &c.,_ p. 512, col. 2: "Now they thinke that a sermon costeth no
more then a quaffe wil them."

Line 78. _Ladds of mettall._--Cf. 1 _Henry IV._ ii. 4, 13.

Line 80._ No vertue extant._--Cf. 1 _Henry IV._ ii. 4, 132, where virtue
= bravery, physical courage. The porter's use of the phrase sounds like
a quotation.

Line 97. _A the stampe._--Halliwell gives "Stamp, a tune," and quotes
from MS. Fairfax, 16, "Songes, stampes, and eke daunces." Cf. also
_Midsummer Night's Dream_, iii. 2, 25.

Line 98. _Windsuckers._--This old name for the kestrel, or wind-hover,
is of tolerably frequent occurrence. It is used metaphorically of a
person ready to pounce on anything. "There is a certain envious
windsucker that hovers up and down" (Chapman).

Line 101. _I pre, sequor._--Literally, "Go before, I follow." The porter
supplies a free translation in the words "one of your consorte." Cf.
the use of the phrase "to be hail-fellow-well-met with anyone."

Line 109. _Condolent_ here means _expressing sorrow_. For this sense see
Wood, Ath. Oxon. (R)--"His vein for ditty and amorous ode was deemed
most lofty, condolent, and passionate."

Line 110. _Suffocat._--The porter's substitute for _sufficit_; though,
strictly speaking, the _o_ should be long.

Line 111. _I tickle them for a good voice._--Besides the ordinary
metaphorical meaning of to flatter, _tickle_ sometimes = to serve one
right, to make one pay for a thing. For this sense see 1 _Henry IV._ ii.
4, 489, "I'll tickle ye for a young prince, i' faith;" and cf. _Ibid._
ii. 1, 66. Probably the expression has a similar force here.

Line 114. _Butterd beare._--Ale boiled with lump-sugar, butter, and

Line 122. _Act in conye._--The adjective _incony_, with the apparent
sense of fine, delicate, is used twice by Costard in _Love's Labour's
Lost_ (iii. 136, iv. 1, 144) and also in Marlowe's _Jew of Malta_, iv.
5--"While I in thy incony lap do tumble." Other examples are rare, and I
have not found any instance of an adverbial use. A second, though much
less probable interpretation of the passage is suggested by the frequent
use of _cony_ as a term of endearment to a woman (cf. Skelton's _Eleanor
Rummyng_, 225--"He called me his whytyng, his nobbes, and his conny").
If, however, "act in conye" were equivalent to "act as woman," _i.e._
take a female part, examples of analogous constructions should be

Line 129. _Lovely._--Here used in the sense of loving, tender. Cf.
_Taming of the Shrew_, iii. 2, 125--"And seal the title with a lovely

Line 156. _All and some._--An expression meaning everyone, everything,

    "For which the people blisful, _al and somme_,
    So cryden" ...

      (CHAUCER, _Anelida and Arcite_, i. 26.)

    "Thou who wilt not love, do this;
    Learne of me what Woman is.
    Something made of thred and thrumme;
    A meere botch of all and some."

      (HERRICK, _Hesperides_, i. 100.)

Line 160. _Cappes a thrumming._--Cf. _Knight of the Burning Pestle_, iv.

    "And let it ne'er be said for shame that we, the youths of London,
    Lay thrumming of our caps at home, and left our custom undone."

To _thrum_ = to beat in the Suffolk dialect.

Line 167. _Shrimpe._--This use of the word in the sense of child,
offspring (or possibly as a term of endearment, "little one") is not
common. It was generally employed contemptuously, and meant a dwarfish
or stunted creature, as in 1 _Henry VI._ ii. 3, 23. See, however,
_Love's Labour's Lost_, v. 2, 594.

Line 193. _Oddes_ here = contention, quarrel. For this sense compare--

                  "I cannot speak
    Any beginning to this peevish odds."

      (_Othello_, ii. 3, 185.)

and also _Henry V._ ii. 4, 129, and _Timon of Athens_, iv. 3, 42.

Line 195. _Seven yeares I was a woman._--The blindness of Tiresias is
most frequently ascribed, either to his having, when a child, revealed
the secrets of the gods, or to his having gazed upon Athenè bathing, on
which occasion the goddess is said to have deprived him of sight.
Another tradition, however (adhered to by Ovid, _Met._ iii. 516, etc.),
relates that Tiresias beheld two serpents together; he struck at them,
and, happening to kill the female, was himself changed into a woman.
Seven years later he again encountered two serpents, but now killed the
male, and resumed the shape of man. Zeus and Hera, disputing over the
relative happiness of man and woman, referred the matter to Tiresias, as
having a practical knowledge of both conditions. He favoured Zeus's
assertion that a woman possessed the more enjoyments; whereupon Hera,
indignant, blinded him, while Zeus bestowed on him, in compensation, the
power of prophecy.

Line 197. _Fold._--The omission of a prefix to suit the exigencies of
metre, common enough in verbs such as defend, defile, becomes remarkable
when the force of the prefix itself is such as to change entirely the
meaning of the verb. Examples of omission in such cases are comparatively
rare, but they are not confined to our own language. See Vergil, _Aen._
i. 262--

    "Longius et volvens fatorum arcana movebo"--

and cf. also _Aen._ v. 26, and Cicero's _Brutus_, 87.

Line 223. _Catch audacitye._--For the old metaphorical use of catch cf.
Wyclif's Bible (1 Tim. vi. 12), "Catche euerlastyng lyf."

Line 227. _Curromanstike_, chiromantic, _i.e._ pertaining to chiromancy;
the rhyme being probably responsible for the use of the adjective rather
than the noun.

Line 229. _The table_, etc.--"The table-line, or line of fortune, begins
under the mount of Mercury, and ends near the index and middle
finger.... When lines come from the mount of Venus, and cut the line of
life, it denotes the party unfortunate in love and business, and
threatens him with some suddain death" (_The True Fortune-teller, or
Guide to Knowledge_, 1686).

Line 236. _Sheppbiter._--A malicious, surly fellow; according to Dyce,
"a cant term for a thief." See _Twelfth Night_, ii. 5, 6, "The
niggardly, rascally sheep-biter."

Line 246. _What._--MS. has the abbreviation w^{th}, usually denoting
_with_, but evidently substituted here, by a copyist's error, for w^{t}
= _what_.

Line 247. _They can but bring_, etc.--W. Carew Hazlitt (_English
Proverbs_, p. 28) quotes from Heywood, 1562--"A man maie well bring a
horse to the water, but he can not make him drinke without he will." He
also mentions that the proverb is ascribed (probably falsely) to Queen
Elizabeth, in the _Philosopher's Banquet_ (1614).

Line 261. _I_ = ay.--Both spellings occur in the MS. For the common use
of the capital _I_ in this sense, see Juliet's play upon the word--

    "Hath Romeo slain himself? Say thou but 'I,'
    And that bare vowel 'I' shall poison more
    Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice;
    I am not I, if there be such an I."

      (_Romeo and Juliet_, iii. 2, 45, etc.)

Line 262. _In spight of ... pye._--Alluding to the common belief in the
pie, or magpie, as a bird of ill-omen.

Line 266. _Phibbus._--The same spelling as in _Midsummer Night's Dream_,
i. 2, 37.

Line 270. _Baskett dagger._--Doubtless a weapon resembling the
basket-_sword_, which had a hilt specially designed to protect the hand
from injury. Cf. 2 _Henry IV._ ii. 4, 141.

Line 275. _Footinge_, step, tread; cf. _Merchant of Venice_, v. 24.

Line 279.--_Late-mouse._--A facetious spelling of Latmus, the "mount of

Line 281. _Shift_ originally meant simply change, substitution of one
thing for another. Cf. _Timon of Athens_, i. 1, 84--"Fortune, in her
shift and change of mood." Wotton writes--"My going to Oxford was not
merely for shift of air." From this arose the later sense of a change of
clothing, in which the word is here used; and which has now become
further limited, _shift_ amongst the lower classes being equivalent to
an under-garment.

Line 282. _Cantle._--A corner, angle, small point. Cf. 1 _Henry IV._
iii. 1, 100; _Antony and Cleopatra_, iii. 10, 6. See also under _cantle_
in N. E. D.

Line 283. _Portmantle._--The older and commoner form of _portmanteau_,
occurring, for example, in Howell's _Familiar Letters_ (1623). Early
instances of _portmanteau_ are, however, to be found.

Line 296. _Ile bee a diar,_ etc.--The joke is on the double meaning of
_diar_; there seems to be no special significance in the choice of the
colour orange-tawny.

Line 300. _Codshead_ = stupid-head, foolish fellow. Cf. in 1607,
Drewill's _Arraignm_. in Harl. Misc. (Malh.) iii. 56:--"Lloyd
(threatning he) woulde trye acquaintance with the other codsheade."
Also, in 1594, Carew Huarte's _Exam. Wits_, i. (1596), 2:--"His
(Cicero's) sonne ... prooued but a cods-head."

Line 301. _O eyes, noe eyes._--The common tag from Hieronymo, in Kyd's
_Spanish Tragedy_, Act iii.:

    "O eyes! No eyes, but fountains fraught with tears;
    O life! No life, but lively form of death."

The line was a frequent subject of ridicule amongst contemporary
writers; cf. _Every Man in his Humour_, i. 5, 58, etc.

Line 316. _Fennell._--Foeniculum vulgare, considered as an inflammatory
herb, and used as an emblem of flattery. Cf. _Hamlet_, iv. 5, 180.

Line 320. _Thou._--MS. has _though_.

Line 327. _Weasand._--This word is generally used as a noun, and itself
means wind-pipe. Cf. _Tempest_, iii. 2, 99.

Line 328. _Thy face more faire, etc._--According to some legends, Gorgon
or Medusa was a beautiful maiden before Athenè, in anger, changed her
hair into serpents, thereby rendering her so hideous that all who saw
her became petrified. Possibly, however, the allusion here is merely

Line 329. _Dishevells._--Spreads in disorder (an intransitive use).
"Their hair, curling, dishevels about their shoulders." (Sir T.

Line 330. _Queene of devills._--Probably Persephone, the wife of Pluto,
who ruled amongst the shades of the departed.

Line 332. _Mavors_ or _Mavers_ is the form from which _Mars_ is

Line 337. _Silenus for streight backe._--Silenus is usually depicted as
a fat, jovial old man, intoxicated and requiring support. The comparison
is of course ironical.

Line 339. _Rine_ = rind or bark. The O. E. form was rinde; but for a
similar omission of _d_ in the literary language cf. _lime_ (O. E.
linde) and _lawn_ (M. E. launde).

Line 342. _Whose nose, etc._--Cf. _Midsummer Night's Dream_, v. 338. A
similar jest occurs in Peele's "Old Wives' Tale": "Her corall lippes,
her crimson chinne."

Line 345. _Thy._--MS. has _they_.

Line 360. _Cruell_, _huge_, are the epithets properly belonging to
_elephant_; _changing_, _small_, to _chameleon_. See Introduction.

Line 396. _Ile beare thee light._--If this expression be an idiom, I can
find no other instance of it; cf., however, the analogous phrase "to
bear hard," _i.e._ to take ill (_Julius Cæsar_, ii. 1, 215; 1 _Henry
IV._ i. 3, 270). The punning character of the passage makes it difficult
to determine what exact meaning Florida wishes to convey. A not
improbable sense would be obtained by supplying a comma after _thee_,
and thus turning _light_ into a nominative of address.

Line 397. _Lurden_, a clown, sluggard, ill-bred person (Halliwell).

    "And seyde, lurden, what doyst thou here?
    Thou art a thefe, or thefys fere."

      (MS. _Cantab_, Ff. ii. 38, f. 240.)

The word occurs in _Piers Plowman_.

Line 399. _O Oedipus I am not, I am Davus._--A quotation from Terence,
_Andria_, i. 2, 23: "Davus sum, non Oedipus."

Line 400. _Master Davis._--Evidently an intentional anglicizing of the
classical name.

Line 406. _Vastitye._--So MS., possibly for _vastilye_.

Line 408. _As true as Helen, etc._--Cf. the professions of Pyramus and
Thisbe (where, however, no irony is intended), _Midsummer Night's
Dream_, v. 1, 200-203.

Line 413. _Loves._--So MS. for _love_.

Line 413. _I am ore shooes in it._--Cf. _Two Gentlemen of Verona_, i. 1,

    "That's a deep story of a deeper love,
    For he was more than over shoes in love."

Line 414. _Mountenance_, quantity, amount. The translation of the
_Romaunt of the Rose_, attributed to Chaucer, has--"The mountenance of
two fynger hight."

Line 422. _Never ioyd it since._--Cf. 1 _Henry IV._ ii. 1, 13: "Poor
fellow, never joyed since the price of oats rose; it was the death of

Line 426. _Pay_ = beat (still used dialectically):

     "They with a foxe tale him soundly did pay."

       (_The King and a poore Northerne Man_, 1640.)

Line 440. _Scummer._--The meanings of this word appear to be either
various or obscure. Halliwell gives "_Scummer_, wonder; Somerset." In
Elworthy's _West Somersetshire Wordbook_ the definitions stand thus: (1)
row, disturbance; (2) confusion, upset; (3) mess, dirty muddle. Wright,
in his _Provincial Dictionary_, gives the meaning as ordure, without
referring the word to any special locality. Obviously, this _scummer_ is
not to be confounded with M. E. _scumer_, a rover or pirate.

Line 441. _Surquedry_, presumption, arrogance, conceit. Chaucer
has--"Presumpcion is he whan a man taketh an emprise that him ought not
to do, or ellis he may it not do & that is called surquidrie" (_Parson's
Tale_, Corpus MS.).

Line 441. _Shooing-horne._--Metaphorically, anything which helps to draw
something else on: a tool. Cf. _Troilus and Cressida_, v. 1, 61: "A
thrifty shoeing-horn in a chain, hanging at his brother's leg." The
expression "shoeing horn of surquedry" is thus equivalent to "chosen
implement of personified arrogance."

Line 442. _Casting topp_, a peg-top. See W. Coles (1657), _Adam in
Eden_, 169--"The fruit is in forme like a casting-top."

Line 443. _Stopple._--The older form of stopper. Cotgrave has--"Tampon,
a bung or stopple."

Line 446. _Vpp leave._--So MS. for _vpp heave_, possibly by confusion
with _vpp lift_.

Line 453. _Corneagle._--I can find no instances whatever of this very
puzzling word; neither does it seem to be closely analogous to any known
form. Can _corneagle_ be a corrupt spelling of _co-niggle_, to niggle
both (our hearts) together? _Niggle_ was used formerly for deceive,
steal (still in the dialects), make sport of, mock; but is not, to my
knowledge, compounded elsewhere with this prefix. Or is "harts
corneagle" a substitution for "harts' core niggle"? (Heart's core occurs
in _Hamlet_.) Both explanations have been suggested to me only as a last
resource, and are too far-fetched to be at all convincing. Moreover, the
context seems to require the sense of pursue, persecute, rather than of

Line 464. _Tales of tubbes._--A characteristic rendering into
Elizabethan English of Ovid's "Illa Deam longo prudens sermone tenebat."
The earliest instances of the expression "tales of tubs" seem to occur
about the middle of the sixteenth century.

_Notes and Queries_, series v. vol. xi. p. 505, quotes amongst "curious
phrases in 1580"--"To heare some Gospel of a distaffe and tale of a
tubbe" (_Beehive of the Romish Church_, fo. 275b). See also Holland's
"Plutarch," p. 644, and (for further references) Dodsley-Hazlitt's _Old
Plays_, ii. 335.

Line 475. _Quatte._--A corruption of _squat_, sometimes used
substantively for the sitting of a hare:

        "Procure a little sport
    And then be put to the dead quat."

      (_White Devil_, 4to, H.)

That the word in this sense was not general may be gathered from the
fact that George Turberville, in his full description of the various
methods of hunting the hare (_Noble Art of Venerie_, 1575), makes no use
of it, but speaks constantly of the hare's form. _Quat_ for _squat_
(non-substantival) is still frequent in some of the dialects, and is the
word specially used of a hare or other game when flattening itself on
the earth to escape observation. In West Somersetshire it is used in
connection with the verb to go--"The hare went quat" (Elworthy). This
is the modern use most nearly approximating to that of the present

Line 476. _Watt_, the old name for a hare; hence metaphorically used of
a wily, cautious person (Halliwell).

Line 478. _Hollowe in the hind doggs._--Turberville, describing the
hunting of hares, writes,--"One of the huntesmen shall take charge to
rate & beate on _such doggs as bide plodding behinde_; and the other
shall make them seeke and cast about."

Line 518. _Slidd_, God's lid, a mean oath. See _Merry Wives of Windsor_,
iii. 4, 24; _Twelfth Night_, iii. 4, 427; _Every Man in his Humour_, i.
1, 56.

Line 537. _Patch._--A term of contempt, generally supposed to have been
first applied to professional fools, by reason of their parti-coloured
dress. See _Tempest_, iii. 2, 71; _Comedy of Errors_, iii. 1, 32, 36.

Line 556. _Malaparte_, forward, saucy. See _Twelfth Night_, iv. 1, 47,
and 3 _Henry VI._ v. 5, 32.

Line 569. _Scall scabbe._--A scall = a scab; scald = scabby. See _Merry
Wives of Windsor_, iii. 1, 123; _Twelfth Night_, ii. 5, 82; _Troilus and
Cressida_, ii. 1, 31.

Line 571. _Groome._--In M. E. this word meant simply boy, youth; hence
(at a later period) serving-lad. See _Taming of the Shrew_, iii. 2, 215,
and _Titus Andronicus_, iv. 2, 164.

Line 573. _Bange_, beat. Cf. _Othello_, ii. 1, 21, and _Julius Cæsar_,
iii. 3, 20.

Line 575. _Kee pickpurse._--This expression seems to be a quotation from
1 _Henry IV._ ii. 1, 53:

    "_Gads._ What, ho! Chamberlain!

    _Cham. (within)._ At hand, quoth pick-purse."

I am told that the colloquial use of _kee_, or _quy_, for _quoth_, is
frequent in certain parts of Scotland; but I can find no literary
example of the form, and it is hard to account for its presence in this
passage. The scribal substitution of _quy_ for the abbreviated _quoth_
might easily occur, the thorn-letter being erroneously transcribed by
_y_, as in _the_; but this cannot have given rise to any M. E. phonetic
change such as the spelling _kee_ certainly implies.

Line 587. _Spurrgald._--Cf. _Richard II._ v. 5, 94.

Line 588. _Jolthead_, blockhead, dunce. See _Two Gentlemen of Verona_,
iii. 1, 290,--"Fie on thee, jolt-head! Thou canst not read." Also
_Taming of the Shrew_, iv. 1, 169.

Line 590. _Rooke_ = cheat or sharper, and is used as a general term of
contempt. See _Every Man in his Humour_, i. 5, 89,--"Hang him, rook!"
The host of the Garter frequently addresses his familiars as
"bully-rook." See _Merry Wives of Windsor_, i. 3, 2; ii. 1, 200, 207,

Line 611. _Forfeiture._--Properly, something lost on engagement, or in
consequence of the breach of an obligation. Cf. _Merchant of Venice_, i.
3, 165; iv. 1, 24, 122. Here the word is used in a modified and more
general sense.

Line 641. _Ast._--Cf., in 1592, G. Harvey's _Pierces Superer_, 57,--"He
... bourdeth, girdeth, asseth, the excellentest writers."

Line 644. _Scindifer._--So MS., possibly for _scimitar_.

Line 649. _Whineard_, a sword or hanger (Halliwell):--

    "His cloake grew large and sid
    And a faire whinniard by his side."

      (_Cobler of Canterburie_, 1608, sig. E, ii.)

Line 658. _Stingian._--So MS. for _Stygian_.

Line 668. _Lovd._--So MS., possibly for _livd_.

Line 670. _Vild._--So MS. for _vile_ or _wild_.

Lines 677, 678. _Christall_ and _cherrye_ reversed.

Line 683. _Headye_, rash, impetuous. See 1 _Henry IV._ ii. 3, 58, and
_Henry V._ i. 1, 34.

Line 686. _Dicker._--Ten of any commodity, as ten hides of leather, ten
bars of iron, etc. This word comes from the late Latin _dicra_ (_dicora,
decora, dacra, dacrum_), classical Latin _decuria_, meaning ten hides,
occasionally ten of other things. "Also that no maner foreyn sille no
lether in the seid cite, but it be in the yelde halle of the same,
paying for the custom of every _dyker_ i.d." (_English Guilds_, ed. by
Toulmin Smith, p. 384). For the wide use of the word in Western and
Northern Europe, cf. O. Norse _dekr_, ten hides, M. H. G. _decker_, ten
of anything, especially hides. Modern German _decker_ = ten hides.

Line 688. _How_ here = however, as in _Venus and Adonis_, 79; 1 _Henry
IV._ v. 2, 12; and _Much Ado about Nothing_, iii. 1, 60.

Line 703. _Seas._--MS. has _sea_.

Line 711. _Pinke._--A word found in the northern dialects for "to peep
slyly." Cf. the adjective _pink_, winking, half-shut; "Plumpy Bacchus
with pink eyne" (_Antony and Cleopatra_, ii. 7, 121).

Line 734. _My grandam ... earth._--Cf. 1 _Henry IV._ iii. 1, 34.

Line 735. _Randome._--The verb random, to stray wildly, is more
frequently found with the original spelling _randon_ (French _randoner_,
to run rapidly), which became altered, possibly by analogy with _whilom_
and _seldom_, possibly by a process of change similar to that which
converted _ranson_ to _ransom_. Sackville writes:--"Shall leave them
free to randon of their will."



Line 32. (_i_) is here equivalent to _id est_. Lilly gives the examples
of lines 52, 53 (in which the same abbreviation here occurs) with the
words written in full.

Line 48. _Repente._--A play on the meaning of the English and the form
of the Latin word _repente_ is clearly intended.

Line 70. "Denarii dicti, quod denos æris valebant; quinarii, quod
quinos" (Varro).

Line 93. _Janus_ is frequently, though not invariably, represented in
mythology as guardian of the entrance to heaven; in which capacity he
holds in his right hand a staff, and in his left a key, symbolical of
his office (Ovid, _Fast._ i. 125). The names of Jupiter and Janus were
usually coupled in prayer, as the divinities whose aid it was necessary
to invoke at the beginning of any undertaking. Jupiter gave by augury
the requisite sanction; but it was the part of Janus to confer a
blessing at the outset.

Line 111. _Hippocrise._--A beverage composed of wine, with spices and
sugar, strained through a cloth; said to have been named from
Hippocrates' sleeve, the term given by apothecaries to a strainer

Line 111. _Muskadine._--A well-known rich wine.

    "And I will have also wyne de Ryne
    With new maid clarye, that is good and fyne,
    Muscadell, terantyne, and bastard,
    With Ypocras and Pyment comyng afterwarde."

      (_MS. Rawl._ C. 86.)

Though _muscadell_ is the usual form (for instances see Furnivall, _The
Babees Book_, p. 205), the spelling _muscadine_ occurs in Beaumont and
Fletcher's _Loyal Subject_, iii. 4.

Line 112. _The Pierides pies._--The reference is not to the Muses
themselves (sometimes called Pierides from Pieria, near Olympus), but to
the nine daughters of Pierus, who for attempting to rival the Muses were
changed into birds of the magpie kind. For a full account of the
transformation see Ovid, _Met._ v. 670, etc. There is a play here on the
double meaning of _pie_, namely a bird (Latin pica), and an article of


Line 23.--_Keele_, to cool, from O. E. cêlan, M. E. kelen. See _Love's
Labour's Lost_, v. 2, 930--"While greasy Joan doth keel the pot."
Usually, however, the verb bore the derived sense of "to keep from
boiling over by stirring round." _A Tour to the Caves_, 1781,
gives--"_Keel_, to keep the pot from boiling over." This is evidently
the meaning which should be adopted here.


Line 13. _It is bootles_, etc.--Puns on the different meanings of the
word _boot_ are very common in Elizabethan writers, and the relevant use
of the one frequently entails the irrelevant introduction of the other.
See, for example, _Two Gentlemen of Verona_, i. 1, 27, etc.:

    "_Pro._ Over the boots? Nay, give me not the boots.

    _Val._ No, I will not, for it boots thee not."

And _Every Man in his Humour_, i. 3, 30, etc.:

    "_Brai._ Why, you may ha' my master's gelding, to save your longing,

    _Step._ But I ha' no boots, that's the spite on't.

    _Brai._ Why, a fine wisp of hay roll'd hard, Master Stephen.

    _Step._ No, faith, it's no boot to follow him now."

"Give me not the boots" = "do not make a laughing-stock of me."

Line 48. _Ioynd stooles._--The word joint-stool, meaning a seat made
with joints, a folding-chair, is sometimes spelt _join'd stool_ in old
editions of Shakespeare. The porter's use of this form is probably
intended to convey a jest; _ioynd stooles_ is here equivalent to stooles
joined to one another, and the term is used as a facetious synonym for


Line 6. _Oulde._--So MS., possibly for _whole_.

Line 19. _A man & noe beast._--An inversion, probably intentional.

Line 22. _Condole my tragedies._--_Condole_ is here used in the now
obsolete transitive sense, and is equivalent to bewail, grieve over,
lament. See (in 1607) Hieron, _Works_, i. 179--"How tender-hearted the
Lord is, and how he doth ... condole our miseries." Cf. also Pistol's
use of the verb, _Henry V._ ii. 1, 133.

Line 24. _Craues._--The substantive crave, = craving, is not in general
use, but appears to be considered rather as a new formation than as an
obsolete word. Thus the earliest of the three examples given in the N.
E. D. dates from 1830--"His crave and his vanity so far deluded him"
(_Fraser's Magazine_, i. 134). This is a clear instance of a previous

The sentence as it stands presents some difficulty, inasmuch as the
porter has made in the course of his speech only two distinct petitions,
namely that he may be forgiven "all delictes and crimes" (l. 10), and
that his black staff may be restored to him (l. 18). Perhaps the
delicate hint concerning "my ladye pecunia," coupled with the appeal to
"the profunditye or abisse" of the President's liberality, is to be
considered as constituting a third.



The first line indicates the original, the second the correction:

p. 18:

  [F. 72r. rev.]
  [F. 72r rev.]

p. 30:

  [F. 43r. rev.]
  [F. 43r rev.]

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Narcissus - A Twelfe Night Merriment" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.