come home againe.
THeThe shepheards boy (best knowne by that
That after Tityrus first sung his lay,
Laies of sweet louelove, without rebuke or blame,
Sate (as his custome was) vponupon a day,
Charming his oaten pipe vntounto his peres,
The shepheard swaines that did about him play:
Who all the while with greedie listfull eares,
Did stand astonisht at his curious skill,
Like hartlesse deare, dismayd with thunders sound.
At last when as he piped had his fill,
He rested him: and sitting then around,
One of those groomes (a iollyjolly groome was he,
As euerever piped on an oaten reed,
And lou’dlov’d this shepheard dearest in degree,
Hight Hobbinol) gan thus to him areed.
Colin my liefe, my life, how great a losse
Had all the shepheards nation by thy lacke?
And I poore swaine of many greatest crosse:
That sith thy Muse first since thy turning
Was heard to sound as she was wont on hye,
Hast made vsus all so blessed and so blythe.
Whilest thou wast hence, all dead in dole did lie:
The woods were heard to waile full many a sythe,
And all their birds with silence to complaine:
The fields with faded flowers did seem to mourne,
And all their flocks from feeding to refraine:
The running waters wept for thy returne,
And all their fish with languour did lament:
But now both woods and fields, and floods reviuerevive,
Sith thou art come, their cause of meriment,
That vsus late dead, hast made againe aliuealive:
But were it not too painfull to repeat
The passed fortunes, which to thee befell
In thy late voyage, we thee would entreat,
Now at thy leisure them to vsus to tell.
To whom the shepheard gently answered thus,
Hobbin thou temptest me to that I couetcovet:
For of good passed newly to discus,
By dubble vsurieusurie doth twise renew it.
And since I saw that Angels blessed eie,
Her worlds bright sun, her heauensheavens fairest light,
My mind full of my thoughts satietie,
Doth feed on sweet contentment of that sight:
Since that same day in nought I take delight.
Ne feeling hauehave in any earthly pleasure,
But in remembrance of that glorious bright,
My lifes sole blisse, my hearts eternall threasure.
Wake then my pipe, my sleepie Muse awake,
Till I hauehave told her praises lasting long:
Hobbin desires, thou maist it not forsake,
Harke then ye iollyjolly shepheards to my song.
With that they all gan throng about him neare,
With hungrie eares to heare his harmonie:
The whiles their flocks deuoyddevoyd of dangers feare,
Did round about them feed at libertie.
One day (quoth he) I sat, (as was my trade)
VnderUnder the foote of Mole that mountaine hore,
Keeping my sheepe amongst the cooly shade,
Of the greene alders by the Mullaes shore:
There a straunge shepheard chaunst to find me out,
Whether allured with my pipes delight,
Whose pleasing sound yshrilled far about,
Or thither led by chaunce, I know not right:
VVhomWhom when I asked from what place he came,
And how he hight, himselfe he did ycleepe,
The shepheard of the Ocean by name,
And said he came far from the main-sea deepe.
He sitting me beside in that same shade,
ProuokedProvoked me to plaie some pleasant fit,
And when he heard the musicke which I made,
He found himselfe full greatly pleasd at it:
Yet æmuling my pipe, he tooke in hond
My pipe before that æmuled of many,
And plaid theron; (for well that skill he cond)
Himselfe as skilfull in that art as any.
He pip’d, I sung; and when he sung, I piped,
By chaunge of turnes, each making other mery,
Neither enuyingenvying other, nor enuiedenvied,
So piped we, vntilluntill we both were weary.
There interrupting him, a bonie swaine,
That Cuddy hight, him thus atweene bespake:
And should it not thy readie course restraine,
I would request thee Colin, for my sake,
To tell what thou didst sing, when he did plaie.
For well I weene it worth recounting was,
VVhetherWhether it were some hymne, or morall laie,
Or carol made to praise thy louedloved lasse.
Nor of my louelove, nor of my losse (quoth he)
I then did sing, as then occasion fell:
For louelove had me forlorne, forlorne of me,
That made me in that desart chose to dwell.
But of my riuerriver
louelove I soong,
VVhichWhich to the shiny Mulla he did beare,
And yet doth beare, and euerever will, so long
As water doth within his bancks appeare.
Of fellowship (said then that bony Boy)
Record to vsus that louelylovely lay againe:
The staie whereof, shall nought these eares annoy,
VVhoWho all that Colin makes, do couetcovet faine.
Heare then (quoth he) the tenor of my tale,
In sort as I it to that shepheard told:
No leasing new, nor Grandams fable stale,
But auncient truth confirm’d with credence old.
Old father Mole, (Mole hight that mountain gray
That walls the Northside of Armulla dale)
He had a daughter fresh as floure of May,
gauegave that name vntounto that pleasant vale;
Mulla the daughter of old Mole, so hight
The Nimph, which of that water course has charge,
That springing out of Mole, doth run downe
ButteuantButtevant, where spreading forth at
It giuethgiveth name vntounto that auncient Cittie,
Kilnemullah cleped is of old:
VVhoseWhose ragged ruines breed great ruth and pittie,
To trauailerstravailers, which it from far behold.
Full faine she lou’dlov’d, and was belou’dbelov’d full faine,
Of her owne brother riuerriver, Bregog hight,
So hight because of this deceitfull traine,
VVhichWhich he with Mulla wrought to win delight.
But her old sire more carefull of her good,
And meaning her much better to preferre,
Did thinke to match her with the neighbour flood,
Allo hight, Broad water called farre:
And wrought so well with his continuall paine,
That he that riuerriver for his daughter wonne:
The dowre agreed, the day assigned plaine,
The place appointed where it should be doone.
Nathlesse the Nymph her former
For louelove will not be drawne, but must be ledde,
And Bregog did so well her fancie weld,
That her good will he got her first to wedde.
But for her father sitting still on hie,
Did warily still watch which way she went,
And eke from far obseru’dobserv’d with iealousjealous eie,
VVhichWhich way his course the wanton Bregog bent,
Him to deceiuedeceive for all his watchfull ward,
The wily louerlover did deuisedevise this slight:
First into many parts his streame he shar’d,
That whilest the one was watcht, the other might
Passe vnespideunespide to meete her by the way;
And then besides, those little streames so broken
He vnderunder ground so closely did conuayconvay,
That of their passage doth appeare no token,
Till they into the Mullaes water slide.
So secretly did he his louelove
Yet not so secret, but it was descride,
And told her father by a shepheards boy.
Who wondrous wroth for that so foule despight,
In great auengeavenge did roll downe from his hill
Huge mightie stones, the which encomber might
His passage, and his water-courses spill.
So of a RiuerRiver, which he was of old,
He none was made, but scattred all to nought,
And lost emong those rocks into him rold,
Did lose his name: so deare his louelove he bought.
Which hauinghaving said, him Thestylis bespake,
Now by my life this was a mery lay:
Worthie of Colin selfe, that did it make.
But read now eke of friendship I thee pray,
What dittie did that other shepheard sing?
For I do couetcovet most the same to heare,
As men vseuse most to couetcovet forreine thing.
That shall I eke (quoth he) to you declare.
His song was all a lamentable lay,
Of great vnkindnesseunkindnesse, and of vsageusage hard,
Of Cynthia the Ladie of the sea,
Which from her presence faultlesse him debard.
And euerever and anon with singulfs rife,
He cryed out, to make his vndersongundersong
Ah my louesloves queene, and goddesse of my life,
Who shall me pittie, when thou doest me wrong?
Then gan a gentle bonylasse to speake,
That Marin hight, Right well he sure did
That could great Cynthiaes sore displeasure
And mouemove to take him to her grace againe.
But tell on further Colin, as befell
Twixt him and thee, that thee did hence dissuade.
When thus our pipes we both had wearied well,
(Quoth he) and each an end of singing made,
He gan to cast great lyking to my lore,
And great dislyking to my lucklesse lot:
That banisht had my selfe, like wight forlore,
Into that waste, where I was quite forgot.
The which to leaueleave, thenceforth he counseld mee,
VnmeetUnmeet for man, in whom was ought regardfull
And wend with him, his Cynthia to see:
Whose grace was great, &and bounty most rewardfull.
Besides her peerlesse skill in making well
And all the ornaments of wondrous wit,
Such as all womankynd did far excell:
Such as the world admyr’d and praised it:
So what with hope of good, and hate of ill,
He me perswaded forth with him to fare,
Nought tooke I with me, but mine oaten quill:
Small needments else need shepheard to prepare.
So to the sea we came; the sea? that is
A world of waters heaped vponupon hie,
Rolling like mountaines in wide wildernesse,
Horrible, hideous, roaring with hoarse crie.
And is the sea (quoth Coridon) so
Fearful much more (quoth he) thẽthen hart can fear:
Thousand wyld beasts with deep mouthes gaping direfull
Therin stil wait poore passengers to teare.
Who life doth loath, and longs death to behold,
Before he die, alreadie dead with feare,
And yet would liuelive with heart halfe stonie cold,
Let him to sea, and he shall see it there.
And yet as ghastly dreadfull, as it seemes,
Bold men presuming life for gaine to sell,
Dare tempt that gulf, and in those wandring stremes
Seek waies vnknowneunknowne, waies leading down to hell.
For as we stood there waiting on the strond,
Behold an huge great vessell to vsus came,
Dauncing vponupon the waters back to lond,
As if it scornd the daunger of the same;
Yet was it but a wooden frame and fraile,
Glewed togither with some subtile matter,
Yet had it armes and wings, and head and taile,
And life to mouemove it selfe vponupon the water.
Strange thing, how bold &and swift the monster was,
That neither car’d for wynd, nor haile, nor raine,
Nor swelling waueswaves, but thorough them did passe
So proudly, that she made them roare againe.
The same aboord vsus gently did receauereceave,
And without harme vsus farre away did beare,
So farre that land our mother vsus did leaueleave,
And nought but sea and heauenheaven to vsus appeare.
Then hartlesse quite and full of inward feare,
That shepheard I besought to me to tell,
VnderUnder what skie, or in what world we were,
In which I saw no liuingliving people dwell.
Who me recomforting all that he might,
Told me that that same was the Regiment
Of a great shepheardesse, that Cynthia hight,
His liege his Ladie, and his lifes Regent.
If then (quoth I) a shepheardesse she bee,
Where be the flockes and heards, which she doth keep?
And where may I the hills and pastures see,
On which she vsethuseth for to feed her sheepe?
These be the hills (quoth he) the surges hie,
On which faire Cynthia her heards doth feed:
Her heards be thousand fishes with their frie,
Which in the bosome of the billowes breed.
Of them the shepheard which hath charge in chief,
Is Triton blowing loud his wreathed horne:
At sound whereof, they all for their relief
Wend too and fro at eueningevening and at morne.
And Proteus eke with him does driuedrive his
Of stinking Seales and Porcpisces together,
With hoary head and deawy dropping beard,
Compelling them which way he list, and whether.
And I among the rest of many least,
HaueHave in the Ocean charge to me assignd:
Where I will liuelive or die at her beheast,
And serueserve and honour her with faithfull mind.
Besides an hundred Nymphs all heauenlyheavenly borne,
And of immortall race, doo still attend
To wash faire Cynthiaes sheep, whẽwhen they be
And fold them vpup, when they hauehave made an end.
Those be the shepheards which my Cynthia
At sea, beside a thousand moe at land:
For land and sea my Cynthia doth deseruedeserve
To hauehave in her commandement at hand.
Thereat I wondred much, till wondring more
And more, at length we land far off descryde:
Which sight much gladed me; for much afore
I feard, least land we neuernever should hauehave eyde:
Thereto our ship her course directly bent,
As if the way she perfectly had knowne.
We Lunday passe; by that same name is ment
An Island, which the first to west was showne.
From thence another world of land we kend,
Floting amid the sea in ieopardiejeopardie,
And round about with mightie white rocks hemd,
Against the seas encroching crueltie.
Those same the shepheard told me, were the fields
In which dame Cynthia her landheards fed,
Faire goodly fields, then which Armulla yields
None fairer, nor more fruitfull to be red.
The first to which we nigh approched, was
An high headland thrust far into the sea,
Like to an horne, whereof the name it has,
Yet seemed to be a goodly pleasant lea:
There did a loftie mount at first vsus greet,
Which did a stately heape of stones vpreareupreare,
That seemd amid the surges for to fleet,
Much greater then that frame, which vsus did beare:
There did our ship her fruitfull wombe vnladeunlade,
And put vsus all a shore on Cynthias land.
What land is that thou meanst (then Cuddy sayd)
And is there other, then whereon we stand?
Ah Cuddy (then quoth Colin) thous a fon,
That hast not seene least part of natures worke:
Much more there is vnkendunkend, then thou doest kon,
And much more that does from mens knowledge lurke.
For that same land much larger is then this,
And other men and beasts and birds doth feed:
There fruitfull corne, faire trees, fresh herbage is
And all things else that liuingliving creatures need.
Besides most goodly riuersrivers there appeare,
No whit inferiour to thy Funchins praise,
Allo or to Mulla cleare:
Nought hast thou foolish boy seene in thy daies,
But if that land be there (quoth he) as here,
And is theyr heauenheaven likewise there all one?
And if like heauenheaven, be heauenlyheavenly graces there,
Like as in this same world where we do wone?
Both heauenheaven and heauenlyheavenly graces do much more
(Quoth he) abound in that same land, then this.
For there all happie peace and plenteous store
Conspire in one to make contented blisse:
No wayling there nor wretchednesse is heard,
No bloodie issues nor no leprosies,
No griesly famine, nor no raging sweard,
No nightly bodrags, nor no hue and cries;
The shepheards there abroad may safely lie,
On hills and downes, withouten dread or daunger:
wolueswolves the good mans hope destroy,
Nor outlawes fell affray the forest raunger.
There learned arts do florish in great honor,
And Poets wits are had in peerlesse price:
Religion hath lay powre to rest vponupon her,
AduancingAdvancing vertue and suppressing vice.
For end, all good, all grace there freely growes,
Had people grace it gratefully to vseuse:
For God his gifts there plenteously bestowes,
But gracelesse men them greatly do abuse.
But say on further, then said Corylas,
The rest of thine aduenturesadventures, that betyded.
Foorth on our voyage we by land did passe,
(Quoth he) as that same shepheard still vsus guyded,
VntillUntill that we to Cynthiaes presence came:
Whose glorie greater then my simple thought,
I found much greater then the former fame;
Such greatnes I cannot compare to ought:
But if I her like ought on earth might read,
I would her lyken to a crowne of lillies,
VponUpon a virgin brydes adorned head,
With Roses dight and Goolds and Daffadillies;
Or like the circlet of a Turtle true,
In which all colours of the rainbow bee;
Or like faire Phebes garlond shining new,
In which all pure perfection one may see.
But vaine it is to thinke by paragone
Of earthly things, to iudgejudge of things diuinedivine:
Her power, her mercy, and her wisedome, none
Can deeme, but who the Godhead can define.
Why then do I base shepheard bold and blind,
Presume the things so sacred to prophane?
More fit it is t’adore with humble mind,
The image of the heauensheavens in shape humane.
With that Alexis broke his tale
Saying, By wondring at thy Cynthiaes praise:
Colin, thy selfe thou mak’st vsus more to
And her vpraisingupraising, doest thy selfe vpraiseupraise.
But let vsus heare what grace she shewed thee,
And how that shepheard strange, thy cause
The shepheard of the Ocean (quoth he)
VntoUnto that Goddesse grace me first enhanced,
And to mine oaten pipe enclin’d her eare,
That she thenceforth therein gan take delight,
And it desir’d at timely houres to heare,
All were my notes but rude and roughly dight,
For not by measure of her owne great mynd,
And wondrous worth she mott my simple song,
But ioydjoyd that country shepheard ought could fynd
Worth harkening to, emongst that learned throng.
Why? (said Alexis then) what
That is so great a shepheardesse her selfe,
And hath so many shepheards in her fee,
To heare thee sing, a simple silly Elfe?
Or be the shepheards which do serueserve her laesie,
That they list not their mery pipes applie?
Or be their pipes vntunableuntunable and craesie,
That they cannot her honour worthylie?
Ah nay (said Colin) neither so,
For better shepheards be not vnderunder skie,
Nor better hable, when they list to blow,
Their pipes aloud, her name to glorifie.
There is good Harpalus now woxen aged,
In faithfull seruiceservice of faire Cynthia:
And there is a Corydon though meanly waged,
Yet hablest wit of most I know this day.
And there is sad Alcyon bent to mourne,
Though fit to frame an euerlastingeverlasting dittie,
Whose gentle spright for Daphnes death doth
Sweet layes of louelove to endlesse plaints of pittie.
Ah pensiuepensive boy pursue that brauebrave conceipt,
In thy sweet Eglantine of Meriflure,
Lift vpup thy notes vntounto their wonted height,
That may thy Muse and mates to mirth allure.
There eke is Palin worthie of great praise,
Albe he enuieenvie at my rustick quill:
And there is pleasing Alcon, could he raise
His tunes from laies to matter of more skill.
And there is old Palemon free from spight,
Whose carefull pipe may make the hearer rew:
Yet he himselfe may rewed be more right,
That sung so long vntilluntill quite hoarse he grew.
And there is Alabaster throughly taught,
In all this skill, though knowen yet to few,
Yet were he knowne to Cynthia as he ought,
His Eliseïs would be redde anew.
Who liueslives that can match that heroick song,
Which he hath of that mightie Princesse made?
O dreaded Dread, do not thy selfe that wrong,
To let thy fame lie so in hidden shade:
But call it forth, O call him forth to thee,
To end thy glorie which he hath begun:
That when he finisht hath as it should be,
No brauerbraver Poeme can be vnderunder Sun.
Nor Po nor Tyburs swans so much renowned,
Nor all the brood of Greece so highly
Can match that Muse
whẽwhen it with bayes is
And to the pitch of her perfection raised.
And there is a new shepheard late vpup sprong,
The which doth all afore him far surpasse:
Appearing well in that well tuned song,
Which late he sung vntounto a scornfull lasse.
Yet doth his trembling Muse but lowly flie,
As daring not too rashly mount on hight,
And doth her tender plumes as yet but trie,
In louesloves soft laies and looser thoughts delight.
Then rouze thy feathers quickly Daniell,
And to what course thou please thy selfe aduanceadvance:
But most me seemes, thy accent will excell,
In Tragick plaints and passionate mischance.
And there that shepheard of the Ocean is,
That spends his wit in louesloves consuming smart:
Full sweetly tempred is that Muse of his
That can empierce a Princes mightie hart.
There also is (ah no, he is not now)
But since I said he is, he quite is gone,
Amyntas quite is gone and lies full low,
HauingHaving his Amaryllis left to mone.
Helpe, O ye shepheards helpe ye all in this,
Helpe Amaryllis this her losse to mourne:
Her losse is yours, your losse Amyntas is,
Amyntas floure of shepheards pride
He whilest he liuedlived was the noblest swaine,
That euerever piped in an oaten quill:
Both did he other, which could pipe, maintaine,
And eke could pipe himselfe with passing skill.
And there though last not least is Aetion,
A gentler shepheard may no where be found:
Whose Muse full of high thoughts inuentioninvention,
Doth like himselfe Heroically sound.
All these, and many others mo remaine,
Now after Astrofell is dead and gone:
But while as Astrofell did liuelive and raine,
Amongst all these was none his Paragone.
All these do florish in their sundry kynd,
And do their Cynthia immortall make:
Yet found I lyking in her royall mynd,
Not for my skill, but for that shepheards sake.
Then spake a louelylovely lasse, hight Lucida,
Shepheard, enough of shepheards thou hast told,
Which fauourfavour thee, and honour Cynthia:
But of so many Nymphs which she doth hold
In her retinew, thou hast nothing sayd;
That seems, with none of thẽthem thou fauorfavor foundest,
Or art ingratefull to each gentle mayd,
That none of all their due deserts resoundest.
Ah far be it (quoth Colin Clout)
That I of gentle Mayds should ill deseruedeserve:
For that my selfe I do professe to be
Vassall to one, whom all my dayes I serueserve;
The beame of beautie sparkled from aboueabove,
The floure of vertue and pure chastitie,
The blossome of sweet ioyjoy and perfect louelove,
The pearle of peerlesse grace and modestie:
To her my thoughts I daily dedicate,
To her my heart I nightly martyrize:
To her my louelove I lowly do prostrate,
To her my life I wholly sacrifice:
My thought, my heart, my louelove, my life is shee,
And I hers euerever onely, euerever one:
One euerever I all vowed hers to bee,
One euerever I, and others neuernever none.
Then thus Melissa said; Thrise
Whom thou doest so enforce to deifie:
That woods, and hills, and valleyes thou hast made
Her name to eccho vntounto
But say, who else vouchsafed thee of grace?
They all (quoth he) me graced goodly well,
That all I praise, but in the highest place,
VrianaUriana, sister vntounto
In whose brauebrave mynd as in a golden cofer,
All heauenlyheavenly gifts and riches locked are:
More rich then pearles of Ynde, or gold of Opher,
And in her sex more wonderfull and rare.
Ne lesse praise worthie I Theana read,
Whose goodly beames though they be ouerover dight
With mourning stole of carefull wydow head,
Yet through that darksome vale do glister bright;
She is the well of bountie and brauebrave mynd,
Excelling most in glorie and great light:
She is the ornament of womankind,
And Courts chief garlond with all vertues dight.
Therefore great Cynthia her in chiefest
Doth hold, and next vntounto her selfe aduanceadvance,
Well worthie of so honourable place,
For her great worth and noble gouernancegovernance.
Ne lesse praise worthie is her sister deare,
Faire Marian, the Muses onely darling:
Whose beautie shyneth as the morning cleare,
With siluersilver deaw vponupon the roses pearling.
Ne lesse praise worthie is Mansilia,
Best knowne by bearing vpup great Cynthiaes traine:
That same is she to whom Daphnaida
VponUpon her neeces death I did complaine.
She is the paterne of true womanhead,
And onely mirrhor of feminitie:
Worthie next after Cynthia to tread,
As she is next her in nobilitie.
Ne lesse praise worthie Galathea seemes,
Then best of all that honourable crew,
Faire Galathea with bright shining beames,
Inflaming feeble eyes that her do view.
She there then waited vponupon
Yet there is not her won, but here with vsus
About the borders of our rich Coshma,
Now made of Maa the Nymph delitious.
Ne lesse praisworthie faire Neæra is,
Neæra ours, not theirs, though there she
For of the famous Shure, the Nymph she is,
For high desert, aduaunstadvaunst to that degree.
She is the blosome of grace and curtesie,
Adorned with all honourable parts:
She is the braunch of true nobilitie,
Belou’dBelov’d of high and low with faithfull harts.
Ne lesse praisworthie Stella do I read,
Though nought my praises of her needed arre,
Whom verse of noblest shepheard lately dead
Hath prais’d and rais’d aboueabove each other starre.
Ne lesse praisworthie are the sisters three,
The honor of the noble familie:
Of which I meanest boast my selfe to be,
And most that vntounto them I am so nie.
Phyllis, Charillis, and sweet Amaryllis,
Phyllis the faire, is eldest of the three:
The next to her, is bountifull Charillis.
But th’youngest is the highest in degree.
Phyllis the floure of rare perfection,
Faire spreading forth her leauesleaves with fresh delight,
That with their beauties amorous reflexion,
BereaueBereave of sence each rash beholders sight.
But sweet Charillis is the Paragone
Of peerlesse price, and ornament of praise,
Admyr’d of all, yet enuiedenvied of none,
Through the myld temperance of her goodly raies.
Thrise happie do I hold thee noble swaine,
The which art of so rich a spoile possest,
And it embracing deare without disdaine,
Hast sole possession in so chaste a brest:
Of all the shepheards daughters which there bee,
And yet there be the fairest vnderunder skie,
Or that elsewhere I euerever yet did see.
A fairer Nymph yet neuernever saw mine eie:
She is the pride and primrose of the rest,
Made by the maker selfe to be admired:
And like a goodly beacon high addrest,
That is with sparks of heauenleheavenle beautie fired.
But Amaryllis, whether fortunate,
Or else vnfortunateunfortunate may I aread,
That freed is from Cupids yoke by fate,
Since which she doth new bands aduentureadventure dread.
Shepheard what euerever thou hast heard to be
In this or that praysd diuerslydiversly apart,
In her thou maist them all assembled see,
And seald vpup in the threasure of her hart.
Ne thee lesse worthie gentle
For thy chaste life and vertue I esteeme:
Ne thee lesse worthie curteous Candida,
For thy true louelove and loyaltie I deeme.
Besides yet many mo that Cynthia
Right noble Nymphs, and high to be commended:
But if I all should praise as they deseruedeserve,
This sun would faile me ere I halfe had ended.
Therefore in closure of a thankfull mynd,
I deeme it best to hold eternally,
Their bounteous deeds and noble fauoursfavours shrynd,
Then by discourse them to indignifie.
So hauinghaving said, Aglaura him
Colin, well worthie were those goodly
Bestowd on thee, that so of them doest make,
And them requitest with thy thankfull labours.
But of great Cynthiaes goodnesse and high
Finish the storie which thou hast begunne.
More eath (quoth he) it is in such a case
How to begin, then know how to hauehave donne.
For euerieeverie gift and euerieeverie goodly meed,
Which she on me bestowd, demaunds a day;
And euerieeverie day, in which she did a deed,
Demaunds a yeare it duly to display.
Her words were like a streame of honny fleeting,
The which doth softly trickle from the hiuehive:
Hable to melt the hearers heart vnweetingunweeting,
And eke to make the dead againe aliuealive.
Her deeds were like great glusters of ripe grapes,
Which load the bunches of the fruitfull vine:
Offring to fall into each mouth that gapes,
And fill the same with store of timely wine.
Her lookes were like beames of the morning Sun,
Forth looking through the windowes of the East:
When first the fleecie cattell hauehave begun
VponUpon the perled grasse to make their feast.
Her thoughts are like the fume of Franckincence,
Which from a golden Censer forth doth rise:
And throwing forth sweet odours moũtsmounts fro thẽcethence
In rolling globes vpup to the vauted skies.
There she beholds with high aspiring thought,
The cradle of her owne creation:
Emongst the seats of Angels heauenlyheavenly wrought,
Much like an Angell in all forme and fashion.
Colin (said Cuddy then) thou hast forgot
Thy selfe, me seemes, too much, to mount so hie:
Such loftie flight, base shepheard seemeth not,
From flocks and fields, to Angels and to skie.
True (answered he) but her great excellence,
Lifts me aboueabove the measure of my might:
That being fild with furious insolence,
I feele my selfe like one yrapt in spright.
For when I thinke of her, as oft I ought,
Then want I words to speake it fitly forth:
And when I speake of her what I hauehave thought,
I cannot thinke according to her worth.
Yet will I thinke of her, yet will I speake,
So long as life my limbs doth hold together,
And when as death these vitall bands shall breake,
Her name recorded I will leaueleave for euerever.
Her name in eueryevery tree I will endosse,
That as the trees do grow, her name may grow:
And in the ground each where will it engrosse,
And fill with stones, that all men may it know.
The speaking woods and murmuring waters fall,
Her name Ile teach in knowen termes to frame:
And eke my lambs when for their dams they call,
Ile teach to call for Cynthia by name.
And long while after I am dead and rotten:
AmõgstAmongst the shepheards daughters dancing rownd,
My layes made of her shall not be forgotten.
But sung by them with flowry gyrlonds crownd.
And ye, who so ye be, that shall surviuesurvive:
When as ye heare her memory renewed,
Be witnesse of her bountie here aliuealive,
Which she to Colin her poore shepheard
Much was the whole assembly of those heards,
Moov’d at his speech, so feelingly he spake:
And stood awhile astonisht at his words,
Till Thestylis at last their silence brake,
Saying, Why Colin, since thou foundst such
With Cynthia and all her noble crew:
Why didst thou euerever
leaueleave that happie place,
In which such wealth might vntounto thee accrew?
And back returnedst to this barrein soyle,
Where cold and care and penury do dwell:
Here to keep sheepe, with hunger and with toyle,
Most wretched he, that is and cannot tell.
Happie indeed (said Colin) I him
That may that blessed presence still enioyenjoy,
Of fortune and of enuyenvy
Which still are wont most happie states t’annoy:
But I by that which little while I proouedprooved:
Some part of those enormities did see,
The which in Court continually hoouedhooved,
And followd those which happie seemd to bee.
Therefore I silly man, whose former dayes
Had in rude fields bene altogether spent,
Darest not aduentureadventure such vnknowenunknowen wayes,
Nor trust the guile of fortunes blandishment,
But rather chose back to my sheep to tourne,
Whose vtmostutmost hardnesse I before had tryde,
Then hauinghaving learnd repentance late, to mourne
Emongst those wretches which I there descryde.
Shepheard (said Thestylis) it
seemes of spight
Thou speakest thus gainst their felicitie,
Which thou enuiestenviest, rather then of right
That ought in them blameworthie thou doest spie.
Cause hauehave I none (quoth he) of cancred will
To quite them ill, that me demeand so well:
But selfe-regard of priuateprivate good or ill,
MouesMoves me of each, so as I found, to tell
And eke to warne yong shepheards wandring wit,
Which through report of that liueslives painted blisse,
Abandon quiet home, to seeke for it,
And leaueleave their lambes to losse misled amisse.
For sooth to say, it is no sort of life,
For shepheard fit to lead in that same place,
Where each one seeks with malice and with strife,
To thrust downe other into foule disgrace,
Himselfe to raise: and he doth soonest rise
That best can handle his deceitfull wit,
In subtil shifts, and finest sleights deuisedevise,
Either by slaundring his well deemed name,
Through leasings lewd, and fained forgerie:
Or else by breeding him some blot of blame,
By creeping close into his secrecie;
To which him needs, a guilefull hollow hart,
Masked with faire dissembling curtesie,
A filed toung furnisht with tearmes of art,
No art of schoole, but Courtiers schoolery.
For arts of schoole hauehave there small countenance,
Counted but toyes to busie ydle braines,
And there professours find small maintenance,
But to be instruments of others gaines.
Ne is there place for any gentle wit,
VnlesseUnlesse to please, it selfe it can applie:
But shouldred is, or out of doore quite shit,
As base, or blunt, vnmeetunmeet for melodie.
For each mans worth is measured by his weed,
As harts by hornes or asses by their eares:
Yet asses been not all whose eares exceed,
Nor yet all harts, that hornes the highest beares.
For highest lookes hauehave not the highest mynd,
Nor haughtie words most full of highest thoughts:
But are like bladders blowen vpup with wynd,
That being prickt do vanish into noughts.
EuenEven such is all their vaunted vanitie,
Nought else but smoke, that fumeth soone away,
Such is their glorie that in simple eie
Seeme greatest, when their garments are most gay.
So they themseluesthemselves for praise of fooles do sell,
And all their wealth for painting on a wall;
With price whereof, they buy a golden bell,
And purchace highest rowmes in bowre and hall:
Whiles single Truth and simple honestie
Do wander vpup and downe despys’d of all;
Their plaine attire such glorious gallantry
Disdaines so much, that none them in doth call.
Ah Colin (then said Hobbinol) the blame
Which thou imputest, is too generall,
As if not any gentle wit of name,
Nor honest mynd might there be found at all.
For well I wot, sith I my selfe was there,
To wait on Lobbin (Lobbin well thou knewest)
Full many worrhie ones then waiting were,
As euerever else in Princes Court thou vewest.
Of which, among you many yet remaine,
Whose names I cannot readily now ghesse:
Those that poore Sutors papers do retaine,
And those that skill of medicine professe.
And those that do to Cynthia expound,
The ledden of straunge languages in charge:
For Cynthia doth in sciences abound,
And giuesgives to their professors stipends large.
Therefore vniustlyunjustly thou doest wyte them all,
For that which thou mislikedst in a few.
Blame is (quoth he) more blamelesse generall.
Then that which priuateprivate errours doth pursew:
For well I wot, that there amongst them bee
Full many persons of right worthie parts,
Both for report of spotlesse honestie,
And for profession of all learned arts,
Whose praise hereby no whit impaired is,
Though blame do light on those that faultie bee,
For all the rest do most-what far amis,
And yet their owne misfaring will not see:
For either they be puffed vpup with pride,
Or fraught with enuieenvie that their galls do swell,
Or they their dayes to ydlenesse diuidedivide,
Or drownded lie in pleasures wastefull well,
In which like Moldwarps nousling still they lurke,
VnmyndfullUnmyndfull of chiefe parts of manlinesse,
And do themseluesthemselves for want of other worke,
Vaine votaries of laesie louelove professe,
Whose seruiceservice high so basely they ensew,
That Cupid selfe of them ashamed is,
And mustring all his men in Venus vew,
Denies them quite for seruitorsservitors of his.
And is louelove then (said Corylas)
In Court, and his sweet lore professed there,
I weened sure he was our God alone:
And only woond in fields and forests here,
Not so (quoth he) louelove most aboundeth there.
For all the walls and windows there are writ,
All full of louelove, and louelove, and louelove my deare,
And all their talke and studie is of it.
Ne any there doth brauebrave or valiant seeme,
VnlesseUnlesse that some gay Mistresse badge he beares:
Ne any one himselfe doth ought esteeme,
VnlesseUnlesse he swim in louelove
vpup to the eares.
But they of louelove and of his sacred lere,
(As it should be) all otherwise deuisedevise,
Then we poore shepheards are accustomd here,
And him do sue and serueserve all otherwise.
For with lewd speeches and licentious deeds,
His mightie mysteries they do prophane,
And vseuse his ydle name to other needs,
But as a complement for courting vaine.
So him they do not serueserve as they professe,
But make him serueserve to them for sordid vsesuses,
Ah my dread Lord, that doest liege hearts possesse,
AuengeAvenge thy selfe on them for their abuses.
But we poore shepheards whether rightly so,
Or through our rudenesse into errour led:
Do make religion how we rashly go,
To serueserve that God, that is so greatly dred;
For him the greatest of the Gods we deeme,
Borne without Syre or couples of one kynd,
For Venus selfe doth soly couples seeme,
Both male and female through commixture ioyndjoynd.
So pure and spotlesse Cupid forth she
And in the gardens of Adonis nurst:
Where growing he, his owne perfection wrought,
And shortly was of all the Gods the first.
Then got he bow and shafts of gold and lead,
In which so fell and puissant he grew,
himselfe his powre began to dread,
And taking vpup to heauenheaven, him godded new.
From thence he shootes his arrowes eueryevery where
Into the world, at randon as he will,
On vsus fraile men, his wretched vassals here,
Like as himselfe vsus pleaseth, sauesave or spill.
So we him worship, so we him adore
With humble hearts to heauenheaven
That to true louesloves he may vsus
Preferre, and of their grace vsus dignifie:
Ne is there shepheard, ne yet shepheards swaine,
What euerever feeds in forest or in field,
That dare with euilevil deed or leasing vaine
Blaspheme his powre, or termes vnworthieunworthie yield.
Shepheard it seemes that some celestiall rage
Of louelove (quoth Cuddy) is breath’d into thy
That powreth forth these oracles so sage,
Of that high powre, wherewith thou art possest.
But neuernever wist I till this present day
Albe of louelove I alwayes humbly deemed,
That he was such an one, as thou doest say,
And so religiously to be esteemed.
Well may it seeme by this thy deep insight,
That of that God the Priest thou shouldest bee:
So well thou wot’st the mysterie of his might,
As if his godhead thou didst present see.
Of louesloves perfection perfectly to speake,
Or of his nature rightly to define,
Indeed (said Colin) passeth reasons reach,
And needs his priest t’expresse his powre diuinedivine.
For long before the world he was y’bore
And bred aboueabove in Venus bosome deare:
For by his powre the world was made of yore,
And all that therein wondrous doth appeare.
For how should else things so far from attone
And so great enemies as of them bee,
Be euerever drawne together into one,
And taught in such accordance to agree.
Through him the cold began to couetcovet heat,
And water fire; the light to mount on hie,
And th’heauieth’heavie downe to peize; the hungry t’eat
And voydnesse to seeke full satietie.
So being former foes, they wexed friends,
And gan by litle learne to louelove each other:
So being knit, they brought forth other kynds
Out of the fruitfull wombe of their great mother.
Then first gan heauenheaven out of darknesse dread
For to appeare, and brought forth chearfull day:
Next gan the earth to shew her naked head,
Out of deep waters which her drownd alway.
And shortly after euerieeverie
Crept forth like wormes out of her slimie nature,
Soone as on them the Suns like giuinggiving light,
Had powred kindly heat and formall feature,
Thenceforth they gan each one his like to louelove,
And like himselfe desire for to beget,
The Lyon chose his mate, the Turtle DoueDove
Her deare, the Dolphin his owne Dolphinet,
But man that had the sparke of reasons might,
More then the rest to rule his passion:
Chose for his louelove the fairest in his sight,
Like as himselfe was fairest by creation.
For beautie is the bayt which with delight
Doth man allure, for to enlarge his kynd,
Beautie the burning lamp of heauensheavens light,
Darting her beames into each feeble mynd:
Against whose powre, nor God nor man can fynd,
Defence, ne ward the daunger of the wound,
But being hurt, seeke to be medicynd
Of her that first did stir that mortall stownd.
Then do they cry and call to louelove apace,
With praiers lowd importuning the skie,
Whence he them heares, &and
whẽwhen he list shew grace,
Does graunt them grace that otherwise would die.
So louelove is Lord of all the world by right,
And rules their creatures by his powrfull saw:
All being made the vassalls of his might,
Through secret sence which therto doth thẽthem draw.
Thus ought all louerslovers of their lord to deeme:
And with chaste heart to honor him alway:
But who so else doth otherwise esteeme,
Are outlawes, and his lore do disobay.
For their desire is base, and doth not merit,
The name of louelove, but of disloyall lust:
Ne mongst true louerslovers they shall place inherit,
But as Exuls out of his court be thrust.
So hauinghaving said, Melissa spake at
Colin, thou now full deeply hast divynd:
Of louelove and beautie and with wondrous skill,
Hast Cupid selfe depainted in his kynd.
To thee are all true louerslovers greatly bound,
That doest their cause so mightily defend:
But most, all wemen are thy debtors found,
That doest their bountie still so much commend.
That ill (said Hobbinol) they him
euerever one most deare:
He is repayd with scorne and foule despite,
That yrkes each gentle heart which it doth heare.
Indeed (said Lucid) I hauehave often
Faire Rosalind of diuersdivers fowly blamed:
For being to that swaine too cruell hard,
That her bright glorie else hath much defamed.
But who can tell what cause had that faire Mayd
To vseuse him so that vsedused her so well:
Or who with blame can iustlyjustly her vpbraydupbrayd,
For louingloving not? for who can louelove compell.
And sooth to say, it is foolhardie thing,
Rashly to wyten creatures so diuinedivine,
For demigods they be and first did spring
From heauenheaven, though graft in frailnesse feminine.
And well I wote, that oft I heard it spoken,
How one that fairest Helene did reuilerevile:
Through iudgementjudgement of the Gods to been ywroken
Lost both his eyes and so remaynd long while,
Till he recanted had his wicked rimes:
And made amends to her with treble praise,
Beware therefore, ye groomes, I read betimes,
How rashly blame of Rosalind ye raise.
Ah shepheards (then said Colin)
ye ne weet
How great a guilt vponupon your heads ye draw:
To make so bold a doome with words vnmeetunmeet,
Of thing celestiall which ye neuernever saw.
For she is not like as the other crew
Of shepheards daughters which emongst you bee,
But of diuinedivine regard and heauenlyheavenly hew,
Excelling all that euerever ye did see.
Not then to her that scorned thing so base,
But to my selfe the blame that lookt so hie:
So hie her thoughts as she her selfe hauehave place,
And loath each lowly thing with loftie eie.
Yet so much grace let her vouchsafe to grant
To simple swaine, sith her I may not louelove:
Yet that I may her honour paravant,
And praise her worth, though far my wit aboueabove.
Such grace shall be some guerdon for the griefe,
And long affliction which I hauehave endured:
Such grace sometimes shall giuegive me some reliefe,
And ease of paine which cannot be recured.
And ye my fellow shepheards which do see
And heare the languours of my too long dying,
VntoUnto the world for euerever witnesse bee,
That hers I die, nought to the world denying,
This simple trophe of her great conquest.
So hauinghaving ended, he from ground did rise,
And after him vproseuprose eke all the rest:
All loth to part, but that the glooming skies,
Warnd them to draw their bleating flocks to rest.