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Part of an Entertainment presented to the Countess
Dowager of Derby at Harefieldt, by some noble perSons of her family, who appear on the scene in pastoral habit, moving toward the seat of state,
with this song
LOOK nymphs, and shepherds look,
* This poem is only part of an Dowager
of Derby being married Entertainment, or Mask, as it is to John Earl of Bridgwater, bealso entitled in Milton's Manu- fore whom was presented the script, the rest probably being of Mask at Ludlow, we may cona different nature, or composed ceive in some measure how Milby a different hand. The Count- ton was induced to compose the ess Dowager of Derby, to whom one after the other. The alliance it was presented, must have been between the families naturally Alice, daughter of Sir John and easily accounts for it: and Spenser of Althorp in Northamp- in all probability the Genius of tonshire, Knight, and the widow the wood in this poem, as well of Ferdinando Stanley, the fifth as the attendant Spirit in the Earl of Derby: and Harefield is Mask, was Mr. Henry Lawes, in Middlesex, and according to who was the great master of Camden lieth a little to the north music at that time, and taught of Uxbridge, so that I think we most of the young nobility. may certainly conclude, that Mil- + Part of an entertainment
preton made this poem while he re- sented to the Countess of Derby at sided in that neighbourhood with Harefield, &c.] We are told by his father at Horton near Cole- Norden, an accurate topographer brooke. It should seem too, who wrote about the year 1590, that it was made before the Mask in his Speculum Britannie, under at Ludlow, as it is a more im- Harefield in Middlesex, “ There perfect essay: and Frances the
“ Sir Edmond Anderson, Knight, second daughter of this Countess “ Lord Chief Justice of the
This, this is she
Fame, that her high worth to raise,
Less than half we find exprest,
“ Common Pleas, hath a faire taynment at Altrope, 1603. Works, “ house standing on the edge of 1616. p. 874. o the hill. The river Colne pass
This is shee, ing neare the same, through
This is shee, “the pleasantmeadows and sweet
In whose world of grace, &c. pastures, yielding both delight We shall find other petty imita“ and profit.”. Spec. Brit. p. i. tions from Jonson. Milton says, page 21. I viewed this house a few years ago, when it was for Though Syrinx your Pan's mistress the most part remaining in its original state. It has since been Yet Syrinx well might wait on her. pulled down : the porter's lodges So Jonson, ibid. p. 871. Of the on each side the gateway are queen and young prince, converted into a commodious That is Cyparissus' face, dwelling-house. T. Warton.
And the dame has Syrinx' grace ; 1. Look nymphs, and shep
O, that Pan were now in place, &c.
46. herds look, &c.] See the ninth Again, Milton says, v. division of Spenser's Epithala
And curl the grove mion. And Spenser's Aprill, in
In ringlets quaint. praise of Queen Elizabeth. So Jonson, in a Masque at Wel
beck, 1633. v. 15. See, where she sits upon the grassie
When was old Sherwood's head more See also Fletcher's Faithful Shep. But see below, at v. 46. And
quaintly curld? herdess, a. i. s. 1. vol. iii. p. 150. T. Warton.
Obserrat. on Spenser's F. Q. vol. 5. This, this is she.] Milton ii. 256, T. Warton. had here been looking back to &c.] These lines were thus at
10. 'We may justly now accuse Jonson, the most eminent maskwriter that had yet appeared,
first in the Manuscript. and had fallen upon some of his
Now seems guilty of abuse
And detraction from her praise formularies and modes of address.
Less than half she hath exprest, For thus Jonson, in an Enter- Envy bid her hide the resta
Mark what radiant state she spreads,
Sitting like a Goddess bright,
In the centre of her light. Might she the wise Latona be, Or the tow'red Cybele, Mother of a hundred Gods; Juno dares not give her odds ;
Who had thought this clime had held A deity so unparalleld?
[As they come forward, the Genius of the wood appears, and
turning toward them, speaks.]
18. Sitting like &c.] It was through your eyes ;] Dr. Symat first,
mons, Life of Milton, p. 98. refers Seated like a goddess bright, &c. to Shakespeare, Alls well that
ends well, 23. Juno dares not &c.] The Manuscript had at first,
The honour, Sir, which flames in
your fair eyes. Ceres dares not give her odds ;
E. Who would have thought this clime had held &c.
30. Divine Alpheus, &c.] A 23. - give her odds;] Too famous river of Arcadia, that lightly expressed for the occasion. sinking under ground passeth Hurd.
through the sea without mixing 27. I see bright honour sparkle his stream with the salt waters,
Stole under seas to meet his Arethuse;
ye, the breathing roses of the wood,
ye may more near behold
grove With ringlets quaint, and wanton windings wove.
and riseth at last with the foun- 44. – I am the Power] It was tain Arethuse near Syracuse in at first," Sicily. Virg. Æn. iii. 694.
-I have the power. -Alpheum fama est huc Elidis am
46. -and curl the grove] So nem, Occultas egisse vias subter mare, qui Drayton, Polyolb. s. vii. vol. ii
. p. 789. “ Banks crown'd with Ore, Arethusa, tuo Siculis confunditur
curled groves." And so in undis.
several other places; and in a 34. this quest] Inquiry, line which Jonson perhaps research, P. L. ii. 830. “ To search membered, ibid. s. xxxii. vol. ii. with wandering quest.” And so p. 1111. also P. L. ix. 414. Ode F. Inf.
Where Sherwood her curl'd front into 18. Comus, 321. T. Warton.
the cold doth shove. 41. What shallow-searching Jonson also and Browne apply Fame &c.] At first the verse run the same epithet frequently to thus,
the woods or the tops of trees. Those virtues which dull Fame hath Compare note on P. R. ii. 289. left untold,
T. Warton. 44. -by lot] Allotment, Com. 47. With ringlets quaint,] It 20. Took in by lot. T. Warton. was at first, In ringlets quaint.
And all my plants I save from nightly ill
66 We fet a
47. Quaint is here in the sense And from the leaves brush off &c.
54. I fetch my round,] So in
Cymbeline, a. i. s. 2. “I'll fetch
a turn, &c." And in the Acts
compass.” But the phrase is
57. -tasselld horn) Spenser,
Faery Queen, b. i. cant. viii. st. 3.
-an horn of bugle small,
Which hung adown his side in twisted
And tassels gay.
58. See L'Allegro, 56."Through
“ the high wood echoing shrill.”
59. Number my ranks, and visit
every sprout.] Tasso, Gier. Lib.
c. xiii. 8. But there the inchanted
forest is consigned to bad demons.
Piante, che numerate a voi conseg-