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, • X^'-^^^V^-^v^ "^^-^^ " 



Charles C. Kalbflelsch 
June 1, 1933 


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A 1083 L 


Richard Clay &» Sohs^ LimiUd, 
London 6* Bungay. 


John Donne's Poems were originally under- 
taken for Tke Muses Library by Dr. Brinslcy 
Nicholson. They were handed over to me 
shortly after his death in 189 1. I have had the 
advantage of the material which Dr. Nicholson 
had brought together; but for the book as it 
stands, with the exception of the Introduction^ 
which Mr. Saintsbury has kindly contributed, 
I am alone responsible. 

The bulk of the text is based upon the 
principal seventeenth-century editions, those of 
1633, 1635, 1650 and 1669. No one of these is 
of supreme authority, and therefore I have had 
no choice but to be eclectic. But at the same 
time I have endeavovired to give all variants, 
other than obvious misprints, in the footnotes. 
Here and there one or other of the innumerable 
MS. copies has been of service. I have 
modernized the spelling and corrected the 
exceptionally chaotic punctuation of the old 

VOL. I. b 


editions. And so, though much remains obscure, 
I trust that I have provided a more intelligible 
version of the Poems than any that has yet 

It should be understood that a reading attri- 
buted to any one of the printed editions in the 
footnotes is retained in the later editions, imless 
it is otherwise stated. 

My thanks are due for various help to Dr. 
Grosart, to Mr. J. T. Brown of Edinburgh, 
and to Mr. A. H. Bullen. Dr. Nicholson's 
notes contain abundant evidence of the similar 
debt which he owed to Mr. J. M. Thomson of 

E. iv. C. 



A K£f aCS ••• t>t •%• •■• ••• V 

Table op Contents vii 

Introduction xi 

Bibliographical Note xxxv 

The Printer to the Understanders xIv 
To the Right Honourable Williasc 

Lord Craven xlix 

Hexastichon Bibliopolae li 

Hexastichon ad Bibliofolam ... li 

To John Donne Hi 

Songs and Sonnets— 

Jl UC f ICn ... ••• ... ... ,,. I 

The Good-Morrow 3 

Song : Go and catch a falling star ... 4 

Woman's Constancy 5 

The Undertaking 6 

The Sun Rising 7 

The Indifferent 9 

Love's Usury lo 

The Canonization 12 

The Triple Fool 14 

Lovers' Infiniteness 15 

Song : Sweetest love, I do not go ... 16 

The Legacy 18 

** " ever ... ... ,, , ... ... 20 

Air and Angels ^i 

Break of Day 

lAtioiher of ihe same] 

The Anniversary 

A Valediction of n; Name, a 

Twlckenhim Cirden 
ValedicticHi (o bis Book 


Love's Growth 

Love's Exchange 

Confined Love 

The Dream 

A Valediction of Weeping ... 

Love's Alchemy 

The Curse 

The Message 

A Nocturnal upon St. Lucy's Day, I 

the Shortest Daj 
Witchccafl by a Picture ... 

The Bait 

The Apparition 

Tie Broken Heart 

A Valediction Forbidding Mourning 


Love's Ddty 

Love's Diet 

The Will 


Th« Blossom 

The Primrose 

The Relic 

The Damp 

The Dissolution 



The Prohibition 

The Eipiration 

The Computation ... 



The Paradox ... .^ 74 

Song : Soul's joy, now I am gone ... 75 

Farewell to Love 76 

A Lecture upon the Shadow 78 

A Dialogue between Sir Henry Wotton 

and Mr. Donne ... 79 

The Token ... ... ••• ... ... 80 

Self-love .•• •.• ... •.• •.. 81 

Epithalamions, or Marriage Songs — 

On the Lady Elizabeth and Count Palatine 83 
Eclogue : at the Marriage of the Earl of 

Somerset ••• ... ... ••• 88 

Epithalamion Made at Lincoln's Inn ••• 98 


i : Jealousy 102 

ii : The Anagram ... 103 

ill : Change ..• ... 106 

iv : The Perfume 107 

v: His Picture Iio 

VI • ••« #*• •.. Ill 


vii • ..( •.« •«• 1*3 

viii : The Comparison 114 


• »• 

• •• 



• *• 

• •• 

• •• 

ix : The Autumnal 117 

X : The Dream 119 

xi : The Bracelet 120 

xii . ... •«« ... ^'3 

xiii : His Parting from Her 128 

XIV .juiia.a. ... *•* ... ... 13 

XV : A Tale of a Citizen and his Wife ... 133 

xvi : The Expostulation 136 

xvii : Elegy on his Mistress 139 

xviii : ... ••' ... 141 

AiA • •#• #«• ••• Ai|^ 

XX : To his Mistress Going to Bed ... 148 



Divine Poems — 

To the E[arl] of D[oncaster], with Six 

Holy Sonnets 

I* La Corona ... ... ... 

2. Annunciation 

3. Nativity 

4. Temple ... ... ... 

5. Crucifying ... ... ... 

6. Resurrection 

7* Ascension 

To the Lady Magdalen Herbert 

Holy Sonnets : i. — ^xvL 

The Cross ... ... ... 


The Annunciation and Passion 

Good Friday, 16 131 Riding Westward 

«^ j^iiany ... ... ... ... 

Upon the Translation of the Psalms by Sir 
Philip Sidney and the Countess of 
Pembroke ... ... ... 

Ode : Vengeance will Sit above our Faults 

To Mr. Tilman after he had Taken Orders 

A Hymn to Christ ... 

The Lamentations of Jeremy 

Hjonn to God, my God, in my Sickness ... 

A Hymn to God the Father 

To George Herbert 

A.Sheaf of Snakes Used heretofore to be 
roy iseai ... ... ^.f ■«• ... 

Translated out of Gazaeus 

Notes to Vol. I. 



















There is hardly any, perhaps indeed there is 
not any, English author on whom it is so hard 
to keep the just mixture of personal appreciation 
and critical measure as it is on John Donne. 
It is almost necessary that those who do not 
like him should not like him at all; should 
be scarcely able to see how any decent and 
intelligent human creature can like him. It is 
almost as necessary that those who do like him 
should either like him so much as to speak 
unadvisedly with their lips, or else curb and 
restrain the expression of their love for fear that 
it should seem on that side idolatry. But these 
are not the only dangers. Donne is eminently 
of that kind which lends itself to sham liking, 
to coterie worship, to a false enthusiasm ; and 
here is another weapon in the hands of the 
infidels, and another stumbling-block for the 
feet of the true believers. Yet there is always 



something stimulating in a subject of this kind, 
and a sort of temptation to attempt it 

To write anything about Donne's life, after 
Walton, is an attempt which should make even 
hardened icrivailleurs and dcrivassiers nervous. 
That the good Izaak knew his subject and its 
atmosphere thoroughly; that he wrote but a 
very few years after Donne's o\¥n death ; and 
that he was a writer of distinct charm, are dis- 
couraging things, but not the most discourag- 
ing. It is perhaps only those who after being 
familiar for years with Donne's poems, of which 
Walton says very little, make subsequent ac- 
quaintance with Walton's presentment of the 
man, who can appreciate the full awkwardness 
of the situation. It is the worst possible case 
of pereant qui ante nos. The human Donne 
whom Walton depicts is so exactly the poetical 
Donne whom we knew, that the effect is uncanny. 
GeneraUy, or at least very frequently, we find 
the poet other than his form of verse : here we 
find him quite astoimdingly akin to it. 

The attempt however has to be made, and 

it shall be made with as little expenditure of art 

on matter * as possible. John Donne, the son 

of a London merchant and a lady, who was the 

^ It should be observed that the matter is still to a great 
extent inaccessible. The dates and facts in the next three 
pages have been kindly corrected by the Editor, in ac- 
cordance with researches later than Walton's. G. S. 



daughter of John Heywood, and of the house 
of Sir Thomas More, was bom in or about the 
year 1573. It is thought, but not certainly 
known, that aU his secular poetry, satiric and 
erotic, was written before the end of the century, 
and probably most of it before he was five-and- 
twenty. His education, both in secular and 
religious matters, appears to have been peculiar. 
His family were of the old faith, and it is said 
to have been for this reason that he took no 
degree at either Oxford or Cambridge, though 
he was a member of both Universities, entering 
Hart Hall at Oxford in his eleventh year, and, so 
Walton tells us, removing to Cambridge in his 
fourteenth. His father soon died, and he, in- 
heriting no inconsiderable portion, was trans- 
ferred to Lincoln's Inn, perhaps after an experi- 
ence of foreign travel. Walton will have it 
that before he was twenty, he, having never 
actually professed the Romish faith, argued 
himself out of his tendency to it by study. But 
this is perhaps rather questionable. What is 
certain, though vaguely certain, is, that he was 
for some years a traveller and a man of pleasure, 
if not actually a soldier. He went with Essex 
to Cadiz in 1596, and visited the Azores, 
journeying also in Italy, and in Spain. He 
is thought to have spent his fortune in these 


The institution of great men's households, 
which then prevailed, provided a kind of addi- 
tional liberal profession for men of parts and 
gentle but not distinguished birth ; and Donne, 
on his return to England, joined the household 
of Chancellor Sir Thomas Egerton, afterwards 
Lord Ellesmere. Here he met Anne More, Lady 
Egerton's niece and daughter of Sir George 
More, Lieutenant of the Tower. A clandestine 
marriage (1601) followed, with the result of 
great wrath on Sir George's part, the dismissal 
of Donne from Egerton's service, and his in- 
carceration with his two friends, Samuel and 
Christopher Brooke (both poets, and the first 
afterwards Master of Trinity), who had helped \ 
his love-affairs. These troubles he won through, 
and at last was re-united to his wife with Sir 
George's blessing, but none of his money. So 
the pair had to take up their abode with a 
certain Francis Wolley of Pirford, at whose 
death, after a short residence at Peckham and 
Mitcham, Donne transferred his family to the 
house of Sir Robert Drury in London. He 
also accompanied Sir Robert on an embassy to 
France. It is this journey in reference to which 
a fiEunous apparition story is told. There is 
no positive evidence to show why Donne, 
whose strong theological leanings must have 
been obvious to everybody, and who had, ac- 


cording to Walton, received in the middle of 
his troubles the offer of a considerable prefer- 
ment from Dean, afterwards Bishop, Morton, 
did x(ot take orders earlier. But he told Mortem 
that the irregularities of his early life prevented 
him, and the tenor both of his sacred and pro- 
^me woiks makes it probable that this was af 
vera causa. Still there are other facts which 
show that he had not abandoned the hope of 
secular office, legal or other, until he reached 
middle life. At any rate it was not till 1615 that 
the express desire of the king (coupled with his 
sacred Majest/s equally express refusal, even at 
Somerset's desire, to make him anything dse) 
induced him to take orders. James at once 
made him his chaplain, but for a time did not 
confer any benefice on him ; and the heaviest 
calamity of his life, the death of his wife, to whom 
he was passionately attached, fell on him in 
1617. But Lincoln's Inn made him its preacher 
(Cambridge had conferred the degree of D.D. 
on him two years earlier), and he again went 
on a diplomatic expedition, this time with Lord 
Hay to Germany. At last, in Nov. 162 1, he was 
made Dean of St Paul's, and other preferments 
felling in, he became a comparatively rich man. 
But he held these offices not quite ten years, 
and died, after a long illness (in the coiurse of 
fdiich he had the strange but characteristic 


fancy of being painted in his shroud), on March 
31, 1 63 1. Broken health, the loss of his wife, 
the bitterness to a man who must have known 
himself to be one of the greatest intellects of 
the age, of hopes delayed till long past middle 
life, and no doubt also sincere repentance for 
and reaction from youthful follies, will account 
for much of the almost imparalleled melancholy 
which appears in his later works, and seems to 
have characterized his later life. But a con- 
siderable residue remains for natural idiosyn- 
crasy, and for the influence of the Renaissance, 
the peculiar pessimism of which was perfectly 
different from that of classical times, and from 
that of our own day, and can only be paralleled 
by the spirit of Egclesiastes. 

The circumstances of his life however do 
not greatly concern us here ; nor does that part 
—an eminent and admirable part--of his work 
which is not in verse. But it does concern us 
that there is a strange, though by no means 
unexampled, division between the two periods 
of his life and the two classes of his work. 
Roughly speaking, almost the whole of at least 
the secular verse belongs to the first division of 
the life, almost the whole of the prose to the 
second. Again, by far the greater part of the 
verse is animated by what may be called a 
spiritualized worldliness and sensuality, the 


whole of the prose by a spiritualism which has 
left worldliness far behind. The conjunction is, 
I say, not unknown : it was specially prevalent 
in the age of Donne's birth and early life. It 
has even passed into something of a common- 
place in reference to that Renaissance of which, 
as it slowly passed from south to north, Donne 
was one of the latest and yet one of the most 
perfect exponents. The strange story which 
Brantdme tells of Margaret of Navarre summon^' 
ing' a lover to the church under whose flags his 
mistress lay buried, and talking with him of her, 
shows, a generation before Donne's birth, the 
influence which in his day had made its way 
across the narrow seas as it had earlier across 
the Alps, and had at each crossing gathered 
gloom and force if it had lost lightness and 
colour. Always in him are the two conflicting 
forces of intense enjoyment of the present, and 
intense feeling of the contrast of that present 
with the future. He has at once the tran- 
scendentalism which saves sensuality and the 
passion which saves mysticism. Indeed the 
two currents run so full and strong in him, they 
dash and chum their waves so boisterously, that 
this is of itself sufficient to accoimt for the 
obscurity, the extravagance, the undue quaint- 
ness which have been charg*ed against him. 
He was ** of the first order of poets " ; but he was 


not of the first amongst the first Only Dante 
perhaps among these greatest of all had such a 
conflict and ebullition of feeling to express. 
For, as far as we can judge, in Shakespeare, even 
in the Sonnets, the poetical power mastered to 
some extent at the very first the rough material 
of the poetic instinct, and prepared before ex- 
pression the things to be expressed. In Dante 
we can trace something of the presence of slag 
and dross in the ore ; and even in Dante we can 
perhaps trace £eLintly also the difficulty of smelt- 
mg it Donne, being a lesser poet than Dantei 
shows it everywhere. It is seldom that even for 
a few lines, seldomer that for a few stanzas, the 
power of the furnace is equal to the volumes of 
ore and fuel that are thrust into it But the fire 
is always there — over-tasked, over-mastered for 
a time, but never choked or extinguished ; and 
ever and anon fi'om gaps in the smouldering mass 
there breaks forth such a sudden flow of pure 
molten metal, such a flower of incandescence, as 
not even in the very greatest poets of all can be 
ever surpassed or often rivalled. 

For critical, and indeed for general purposes, 
the poetical works of Donne may be divided 
into three parts, separated from each other by 
a considerable difference of character and, in 
one case at least, of time. These are the Satires, 
which are beyond aU doubt very early; the 


El^es and other amatory poems, most of 
which are certainly, and all probably, early like- 
wise ; and the Divine and Miscellaneous Poems, 
some of which may not be late, but most of 
which certainly are. All three divisions have 
certain characteristics in common ; but the best 
of these characteristics, and some which are not 
common to the three, belong to the second and 
third only. 

It was the opinion of the late seventeenth 
and of the whole of the eighteenth century that 
Donne, though a clever man, had no ear. 
Chalmers, a very industrious student, and not 
such a bad critic, says so in so many words ; 
Johnson undoubtedly thought so ; Pope demon- 
strated his belief by his fresh ''tagging'' of the 
Satires. They all to some extent no doubt 
really believed what they said ; their ears had 
fallen deaf to that particular concord. But 
they all also no doubt founded their belief to a 
certain extent on certain words of Dryden's 
which did not exactly import or comport what 
Mr. Pope and the rest took them to mean. 
Dryden had the knack, a knack of great value 
to a critic, but sometimes productive of sore 
misguiding to a critic's readers — of adjusting 
his comments solely to one point of view, to a 
single scheme in metric and other things. 
Now, from the point of view of the scheme 


which both his authority and his example made 
popular, Donne wtu rather formless. But 
nearly all the eighteenth-century critics and 
criticasters concentrated their attention on the 
Satires; and in the Satires Donne certainly 
takes singular liberties, no matter what scheme 
be preferred. It is now, I believe, pretty 
well admitted by all competent judges that the 
astonishing roughness of the Satirists of the 
late sixteenth century was not due to any 
general ignoring of the principles of melodious 
English verse, but to a deliberate intention 
arising from the same sort of imperfect erudition 
which had in other ways so much effect on the 
men of the Renaissance generally. Satiric verse 
among the ancients allowed itself, and even went 
out of its way to take, licences which no poet in 
other styles would have dreamt of taking. The 
Horace of the impeccable odes writes such a 
hideous hexameter as — 

*' Non ego, namque parabilem amo Venerem fadlemque, 

and one of the Roman satirists who was then 
very popular, Persius, though he could rise to 
splendid style on occasion, is habitually as harsh, 
as obscure, and as wooden as a Latin poet well 
can be. It is not probable, it is certain, that 
Donne and the rest imitated these licences of 
malice prepense. 


But it must be remembered that at the 
time when they assumed this greater licence, 
the normal structure of English verse was 
anjrthing but fixed. Horace had in his con- 
temporaries, Persius and Juvenal had still more 
in their forerunners, examples of versifica- 
tion than which Mr. Pope himself could do 
nothing more "correct"; and their licences 
could therefore be kept within measure, and still 
be licentious enough to suit any preconceived 
idea of the ungirt character of the Satiric muse. 
In Donne's time the very precisians took a good 
deal of licence : the very Virgils and even Ovids 
were not apt to concern themselves very greatly 
about a short vowel before s with a consonant, 
or a trisyllable at the end of a pentameter. If 
therefore you meant to show that you were sans 
gine^ you had to make demonstrations of the 
most unequivocal character. Even with all this 
explanation and allowance it may still seem 
probable that Donne's Satires never received 
any formal preparation for the press, and are in 
the state of rough copy. Without this allowance, 
which the eighteenth century either did not 
fare or did not know how to give, it is not 
siuprising that they should have seemed mere 

The satiric pieces in which these peculiarities 

are chiefly shown, which attracted the attention 
vou I. c 


of Pope, and which, through his recension, 
became known to a much larger number of 
persons than the work of any other Elizabethan 
Satirist, have the least share of Donne's poet- 
ical interest But they display to the full his 
manly strength and shrewd sense, and they 
are especially noticeable in one point. They 
exhibit much less of that extravagant exagger- 
ation of contemporary vice and folly which makes 
one of their chief contemporaries, Marston's 
Scourge of Villainy^ almost an absurd thing, 
while it is by no means absent from Hall's 
Virgidentiarum, We cannot indeed suppose 
that Donne's satire was wholly and entirely 
sincere, J^ut a good deal in it clearly was. Thus 
his handling of the perennial subjects of satire 
is far more fresh, serious, and direct than is 
usual with Satirists, and it was no doubt this 
judicious and direct quality which conmiended 
it to Pope. Moreover, these poems abound 
in fine touches. The Captain in the first 
Satire — 

*' Bright parcel-gilt with forty dead men's pay — ^" 

the ingenious evildoers in the second — 

" for whose sinful sake, 
Schoolmen new tenements in hell must make — " 

the charming touch at once so literary and so 
natural in the fifth — 


*' so controverted lands 
'Scape, like Angelica, the striver's hands," 

are only a few of the jewels ^\^ words long that 
might be produced as specimens. But it is not 
here that we find the true Donne : it was not this 
provmce of the imiversal monarchy of wit that 
he ruled with the most unshackled sway. The 
provinces that he did so rule were quite other : 
strange frontier regions, uttermost isles where 
sensuality, philosophy, and devotion meet, or 
where separately dwelling they rejoice or mourn 
over the conquests of each other. I am not so 
sure of the Progress of the Soul as some writers 
have been — interesting as it is, and curious as is 
the comparison with Prior's Alma^ which it of 
necessity suggests, and probably suggested. As 
a whole it seems to me uncertain in aim, imac- 
complished in execution. But what things there 
are in it ! What a line is — 

"Great Destiny, the Commissary of God 1 " 

What a lift and sweep in the fifth stanza — 
" To my six lustres almost now outwore I ** 

What a thought that— 

"This soul, to whom Luther and Mahomet were 
Prisons of flesh 1 " 

And the same miraculous pregnancy of thought 


and expression runs through the whole, even 
though it seems never to have found full and 
complete delivery in artistic form. How fer 
this curious piece is connected with the still 
more famous * Anniversaries,' in which so dif- 
ferent a stage of " progress " is reached, and 
which ostensibly connect themselves with the 
life and death of Mrs. Elizabeth Drury, is a 
question which it would be tedious to argue out 
in any case, and impossible to argue out here. 
But the successive stages of the * Anatomy of the 
World/ present us with the most marvellous 
poetical exposition of a certain kind of devotional 
thought yet given. It is indeed possible that 
the union of the sensual, intellectual, poetical, 
and religious temperaments is not so very rare ; 
but it is very rarely voicefuL That it existed in 
Donne's pre-eminently, and that it found voice 
in him as it never has done before or since, no 
one who knows his life and works can doubt. 
That the greatest of this singular group of poems 
is the ' Second Anniversary,' will hardly, I think, 
be contested. Here is the famous passage — 

" Her pure and eloquent blood 
Spoke in her cheeks and so distinctly wrought, 
That one might almost say her body thought "^- 

which has been constantly quoted, praised, 
and imitated. Here, earlier, is what I should 
choose if I undertook the perilous task of 




singling out the finest line in English sacred 

poetry — 

*' so lon^ 
As till God's great VeniU change the song—" 

a Dies Ira and a VeniU itself combined in ten 
English syllables. 

Here is that most vivid and original of Donne's 
many prose and verse meditations on death, as — 

** A groom 
That brings a taper to the outward room." 

Here too is the singular undemote of " she " 
repeated constantly in different places of the 
verse, with the effect of a sort of musical accom- 
paniment or refrain, which Dryden (a great 
student of Donne) afterwards imitated on the 
note "you" in Astrcea Recluse^ and the Coro- 
nation. But these, and many other separate 
verbal or musical beauties, perhaps yield to 
the wonder of the strange, dreamy atmo- 
sphere of moonlight thought and feeling which 
is shed over the whole piece. Nowhere is 
Donne, one of the most full-blooded and yet 
one of the least earthly of English poets, quite 
so unearthly. 

The Elegies, perhaps better known than any 
of his poems, contain the least of this un- 
earthliness. The famous * Refusal to allow his 
young wife to accompany him as his page,' 
though a very charming poem, is, I think, one 


of the few pieces of his which have been praised 
enough, if not even a little overpraised. As a 
matter of taste it seems to me indeed more open 
to exception than the equally famous and much 
"fie-fied** *To his mistress going to bed,* a 
piece of frank naturalism redeemed from coarse- 
ness by passion and poetic completeness. The 
Elegies again are the most varied of the divisions 
of Donne's works, and contain next to the Satires 
his liveliest touches, such as — 

'* The grim, eight-foot-high, iron-bound, serving-man. 
That oft names God in oaths, and only than" 
(i. e, then)— 

or as the stroke — 

" Lank as an unthrift's purse." 

In Epithalamia Donne was good, but not con- 
summate, falling far short of his master, Spenser, 
in this branch. No part of his work was more 
famous in his own day than his * Epistles' 
which are headed by the * Storm * and ' Calm,* 
that so did please Ben Jonson. But in these 
and other pieces of the same division, the mis- 
placed ingenuity which is the staple of the 
general indictment against Donne, appears, to 
my taste, less excusably than anywhere else. 
Great passion of love, of grief, of philosophic 
meditation, of religious awe, had the power to 


master the fantastic hippogriff of Donne's 
imagination, and make it wholly serviceable; 
but in his less intense works it was rather un- 
manageable. Yet there are very fine things here 
also; especially in the Epistle to Sir Henry 
Goodyere, and those to Lucy Countess of Bed- 
ford, and Elizabeth Countess of Huntingdon. 
The best of the * Funeral Elegies ' are those 
of Mrs. Boulstred. In the Divine Poems there is 
nothing so really divine as the astonishing verse 
from the 'Second Anniversary' quoted above. 
It must always however seem odd that such a 
poet as Donne should have taken the trouble to 
tag the Lamentations of Jeremiah into verse, 
which is sometimes much more lamentable in 
form than even in matter. The epigram as to 
Le Franc de Pompignan's French version, and 
its connection, by dint of Jeremiah's prophetic 
power, with the fact of his having lamented, 
might almost, if any Englishman had had the 
wit to think of it, have been applied a century 
earlier to parts of this of Donne. The * Litany * 
is fax better, though it naturally suggests Her- 
rick's masterpiece in divine song-writing ; and 
even the * Jeremiah' ought not perhaps to be 
indiscriminately disapproved. The opening 
stanzas especisdly have a fine melancholy clang 
not unknown, I think, as a model to Mr. 


But to my fancy no division of Donne's poems 
—the * Second Anniversary * always excepted — 
shows him in his quiddity and essence as do 
the Lyrics. Some of these are to a certain 
eictent doubtfuL One of the very finest of the 
whole, * Absence, hear thou my protestation,' 
with its unapproached fourth stanza, appeared 
first in Davison's Poetical Rhapsody imsig^ed. 
But all the best authorities agree (and for my 
part I would almost go to the stake on it) that 
the piece is Donne's. In those which are 
undoubtedly genuine the peculiar quality of 
Donne flames through and perfumes the dusky 
air which is his native atmosphere in a way 
which, though I do not suppose that the French 
poet had ever heard of Donne, has always 
seemed to me the true antitype and fulfilment 
by anticipation of Baudelaire's 

** Encensoir oubli^ qui fume 
En silence k travers la nuit." 

Everybody knows the 

'* Bracelet of bright hair about the bone *' 

of the late discovered skeleton, identifying the 
lover : everybody the perfect fancy and phrase 
of the exordium — 

*' I long to talk with some old lover's ghost, 
Who died before the god of Love was bom. 



But similar touches are almost everywhere. 
The enshrining once for all in the simplest 
words of a universal thought — 

" I wonder by my troth what thou and I 
Did tiU we loved?" 

The selection of single adjectives to do the 
duty of a whole train of surplusage — 

. " Where can we find two better hemispheres 

Without sharp north, without declining west?"— 

meet us, and tell us what we have to expect in 
all but the earliest In comparison with these 
things, such a poem as ' Go and catch a falling 
star,' delightful as it is, is perhaps only a 
delightful quaintness, and 'The Indifferent' 
only a pleasant quip consunmiately turned. In 
these perversities Donne is but playing tours de 
farce. His natural and genuine work re-appears 
in such poems as * Canonization,' or as /The 
Legacy.' It is the fashion sometimes, and that 
not always with the worst critics, to dismiss 
this kind of heroic rapture as an agreeable but 
conscious exaggeration, partly betrayed and 
partly condoned by flouting-pieces like those 
just mentioned. The gloss does not do the 
critic's knowledge of human nature or his honesty 
in acknowledging his knowledge much credit. 
Both moods and both expressions are true ; but 
the rapture is the truer. No one who sees in 


these mere literary or fashionable exercises, 

can ever appreciate such an aubade as ' Stay, O 

Sweet, and do not rise,' or such a midnight piece 

as * The Dream,* with its never-to-be-forgotten 

couplet — 

** I mast confess, it could not choose bat be 
Profane to think thee anything but thee." 

If there is less quintessence in * The Message,' 
for all its beauty, it is only because no one can 
stay long at the point of rapture which character- 
izes Donne at his most characteristic, and the 
relaxation is natural — as natural as is the pretty 
fancy about St Lucy — 

** Who but seven hours herself unmasks"— 

the day tmder her invocation being in the depths 
of December. But the passionate mood, or 
that of mystical reflection, soon returns, and in 
the one Donne shall sing with another of the 
wondrous phrases where simplicity and perfection 
meet — 

" So to engraft our hands as yet 

Was sul our means to make us one, 
And pictures in our eyes to get 
Was all our propagation. 

Or in the other dwell on the hope of buried 

lovers — 

*' To make their souls at the last busv day, 
Meet at this grave, and make a little stay." 

I am not without some apprehension that I 


shall be judged to have fallen a victim to my 
own distinction, drawn at the beginning of this 
paper, and shown myself an unreasonable lover 
of this astonishing poet. Yet I think I could 
make good my appeal in any competent critical 
coiut. For in Donne's case the yea-nay fashion 
of censorship which is necessary and desirable 
in the case of others is quite superfluous. His 
faults are so gross, so open, so palpable, that 
they hardly require the usual amount of critical 
comment and condenmation. But this very 
peculiarity of theirs constantly obscures his 
beauties even to not unfit readers. They open 
him ; they are shocked, or bored, or irritated, or 
puzzled by his occasional nastiness (for he is 
now and then simply and inexcusably nasty), 
his frequent involution and eccentricity, his not 
quite rare indulgence in extravagances which go 
near to silliness ; and so they lose the extras 
ordinary beauties which lie beyond or among 
these fjEiults. It is true that, as was said above, 
there are those, and many of them, who can 
never and will never like Donne. No one who 
thinks Don Quixote a merely funny book, no 
one who sees in Aristophanes a dirty-minded 
fellow with a knack of Greek versification, no 
one who thinks it impossible not to wish that 
Shakespeare had not written the Sonnets, no 
one who wonders what on earth Giordano Bruno 


meant by Gli eroici Furoriy need trouble him- 
self even to attempt to like Donne. ^ He will 
never have done with that attempt," as our Dean 
himself would have unblushingly observed, for 
he was never weary of pimning on his name. 

But for those who have experienced, or who 
at least understand, the ups-and-downs, the ins- 
and-outs of human temperament, the alterna- 
tions not merely of passion and satiety, but of 
passion and laughter, of passion and melancholy 
reflection, of passion earthly enough and spiritual 
raptiu^ almost heavenly, there is no poet and 
hardly any writer like Donne. They may even 
be tempted to see in the strangely mixed and 
flawed character of his style, an index and 
reflection of the variety and the rapid changes 
of his thought and feeling. To the praise of the 
highest poetical art he cannot indeed lay dainu 
He is of course entitled to the benefit of the pleas 
that it is uncertain whether he ever prepared 
definitely for the press a single poetical work 
of his ; that it is certain that his age regarded 
his youth with too much disapproval to bestow 
any critical care on his youthful poems. But it 
may be retorted that no one with the finest sense 
of poetry as an art, could have left things so 
formless as he has left, that it would have been 
intolerable pain and grief to any such till he had 
got them, even in MS., into shape. The retort 


is valid. But if Donne cannot receive the praise 
due to the accomplished poetical artist, he has 
that not perhaps higher but certainly rarer, of 
the inspired poetical creator. No study could 
have bettered — I hardly know whether any 
study could have produced — such touches as 
the best of those which have been quoted, and 
as many which perforce have been left out And 
no study could have given him the idiosyncrasy 
which he has. Nos passions^ says Bossuet, ant 
quelque chose d*infini. To express infinity no 
doubt is a contradiction in terms. But no poet 
has gone nearer to the hinting and adumbra- 
tion of this infinite quality of passion, and of 
the relapses and reactions from passion, than 
the author of *The Second Anniversary' and 
•The Dream,' of *The Relique' and *The 

George Saintsbury. 




These is no doabt that, during his lifetime, John 
Donne enjoyed an extraordinary reputation as a poet. 
Nevertheless it does not appear that, with the exception 
of the Anatomy of the Worlds the Elegy on rrince 
Henry, and two or three sets of commendatory and 
other verses, any of his poetry was printed before the 
posthumous quarto of 16^3. I am aware that Dr. 
C^osart has a mare's-nest theory of one or perhaps two, 
earlier "now-missing privately-printed" collections, but 
this theory is built on the flimsiest of evidence; Dr. 
Grosart quotes in support of it — 

{a) The entry of "Jhone Done's Lyriques" among the 
books read by Drummond of Hawthomden in 16x3 
{ArcJiaeotogia Scotua, vol. iv.). 

{d) An epigram of Freeman's published in 1614, of 
which he says, " Freeman in 1614, in his J^ntte and a 
Great Cast, has an epigram to Donne, in which he 
odebrates his Storme and Calme, and two 'short' 
satires." As a matter of fact, the epigram is in Runne 
and a Great Cast, which is the second part, as Rubbe 
and a Great Cast is the first, of Freeman's book, and it 
does not speak of two short Satires, but of Satires which 
are too short, a very different thing. 

Ep, 84. 

To John Dunne. 

" The Storm described hath set thy name afloat ; 
Thy Calm a gale of famous wind hath got ; 
Thy Satires short, too soon we them o'erlook ; 
I prithee, Peisius, write a bigger book." 


(r) The well-known lines from Ben Tonaon's R^igrawit 
(x6i6). entitled To Lucy^ Countess ofBedford^ wM Mr, 
Donnis Satins, and beginning — 

" Lucy, you brightness of our Sphere, who are 
Life of the Muses' day, their morning Star." 

{d) A letter by Donne to his friend Geoige Qamid, 
dated April 14, z6z3, in which, speaking ot the Ammi' 
versaries, he says: '*Of my Anniversaries, the fegif 
that I acknowledge in myself is to have descended to 
print anything in verse, which, though it have eicoae 
even in our times, by men who profess and practiae nmcfa 
gravity; jret I confess I wonder how I dedined to it, 
and do not pardon myself" (Alford, vol vL p. 353). 
Almost precisely similar expressions occur in two SSn 
letters written about the same date. One of tbeae has 

no heading (Alford, vol vL p. 338) ; the other is 
••To Sir G. F." (Alford. yoL yTp. 333). 

To my mind tne clear implication of these letters ISa 
not that there were •• other things printed " of Donne's 
besides the Anniversaries, but Uiat the Anniversaries 
were in 16x2 the only things he had printed. WithYes^urd 
to Dr. Grosart's three other pieces of evidence, there is 
nothing to show that they refer to anything but verses 
circulated in manuscript It is quite clear that manu^ript 
• ' books " or collections of Donne's pieces, as distinguished 
from scattered poems, were in existence. And amongst 
Donne's letters is one to Sir Robert Karr, written in 16x9 
(Alford, vol vi. p. 37^3), in which he sends him a copy en 
his poems, together with •' another booki^the^M/^jvoite, 
which he definitely states had not been and was not to be 
published. A short MS., probaJtAv resembling that which 
Freeman saw, is to be found in Queen's Cdfege, Oxford 
(MS. 216, f. 198). It contains only the first five Satires, 
the Storm and calm, and one lyrical poem, TAe Curse^ 
there called Dirae, 

I come now to a point which Dr. Grosart has alto- 
gether overlooked. In a letter to Sir Heniy Goodvere, 
written just before Donne took orders, and dated Vigilia 
St Thomas, December 90, 1614 (Alford, vol. vi p. 
367), occurs the following passage— 

•• One thing more I must tell you ; but so softly, that 



I fiun loth to hear myself: and so sofUy, that if that good 
lady were in the room, with yon and this letter, she 
might not hear. It is, thi^t I am brought to a necessity 
of printing my poems, and addressing them to my Lord 
Chamberlain. Ihis I mean to do forthwith; not for 
much public view, bat at mine own cost, a few copies. 
I apprehend some incongruities in the resolution ; and 
I Imow what I shall suffer from many interpretations ; 
but I am at an end, of mudi considering that ; and, if I 
were as startling in that kind, as I ever was, yet in this 
particidar, I am under an unescapable neoe»ity, as I 
shall let yon perceive when I see you. By this occasion 
I am made a rfaapsodist of mine own rags, and that cost 
me more diligence, to seek them, than it did to make 
them. This made me ask to borrow that old book of 
you, which it will be too late to see, for that use, when 
I see yon: for I must do this as a valediction to the 
world, before I take orders. But this is it, I am to ask 
jrou : whedier you ever made any such use of the letter 
m verse, d nostrt comtesa chit tfous, as that 1 may not 

fit it in, amongst the rest to persons of that rank ; for 
desire it very much, that something should bear her 
name in the book, and I woukl be just to my written 
words to my Lord Harrington to write nothing after 
that. I pray tell me as soon as you can, if I be at 
liberty to insert that : for if you have by any occasion 
applied any pieces to it, I see not, that it will be discerned, 
when it appears in the whole piece. Though this be 
a little matter, I would be sony not to have an ac- 
count of it, within as little after New YearVtide, as you 

This letter is, I think, sufficient proof that Donne had 
not printed his poems before the end of 16x4 ; in the 
absence of any extant copy it is probable that bis intention 
to print them then was never realized. Just such anothor 
intention, indeed, he must already have had in z6oi, 
when he wrote the E^tU to his Process of the SouL 
That Is evidently intended to follow uie portrait-frontis- 
pieoe of a printed book. It begins, "Others at the 
porches and entries of their buildings set their arms ; I, 
my picture." But it is still more u^ikely that he printed 
them after he had taken orders. As to this we have 
the evidence both of Ben Jonson and of Walton. Ben 
Jonson said to Drummond in 26x8-19 (CanvtrsoHons, 
VOL, I. d 



ed. LAing, Shakespeare Society, p. 9), that Donne, 
' ' since be was made Doctor, repenteth highly and seelceth 
to destroy all his poems." Walton perhaps in his Lift 
(ed. 1640) represents Donne's state ex mind more aocur> 
atdy. He writes — 

" The recreations of his yoath were poetry, in whidi he 
was so happy as if Nature and all her varieties had been 
made only to exercise his sharp wit and high fieuicy ; and 
in those pieces which were laoetioasly composed and 
carelessly scattered — most of them being written before 
the twentieth year of his age— it may appear by his choice 
metaphors that both Nature and all the arts joined to 
assist him with their utmost skilU It is a truth that in 
his penitential years, viewing some of those pieces that 
bad been loosely— God knows, too loosel y s c at tered 
in his youth, he wished they had been abortive, or so 
short-lived that his own eyes had witnessed their 
funerals; but, though he was no firiend to them, he 
was not so fiedlen out with heavenly poetry as to forsake 
that ; no, not in his declining age, witnessed then by 
many (Uvine sonnets, and other high, holy and harmonious 

But if Donne's poems were not printed, they had at 
any rate a wMe circulation in MS& among the wits and 
literary men of the age. This is evident, firstly, from 
bis letters, many of which accompanied a copy c^ verses 
to some friend or patron ; secondly, from ue frequent 
and admiring mention of his contemporaries; and, thirdly, 
from the commonplace-books of the period, in which he 
figures very prominently. One result of this popularity 
appears to have been the ascription to him of a numbor 
of poems really by other men. If the author of k 
particular poem was unknown, it came very naturally to 
the compiler of a commonplace-book to append to it the 
initials J. D. (See the Appendices to this edition, 
passim. ) There is an apparent allusion to this esoteric 
reputation, which Donne enjoyed, in Drayton's Epistle to 
Henry Reynolds, Cf Poets and Poesy (published m 1627, 
but perhaps written earlier). After giving a catalogue, 
whidi includes nearly all the writers of the day except 
Donne, Drayton continues — 

*' For such whose poems, be they ne'er so rare. 
In private chambers that endoister'd are, 


And by tianscription daintily must go, 
As though thfi world unworthy were to know 
Their rich composures, let those men that keep 
These wondrous relics in their judgment deep, 
And cry them up so, let such pieces be 
Spoke of by those that shall come aftei me, 
I pass not for them." 

I am afraid that Drayton was not allowed to have a 

llie passage from Walton's Life which I have quoted 
above is of service also in helfung to determine the date 
of Donne's work in the fidd of poetry. As here too Dr. 
Grosart has gone wrong, it is worth while to put together 
some additional testimony of Walton and others on the 
matter. It all points to the fiact that on the whole, al- 
though they overlap conaderaUy, the secular are earlier 
in date than the sacaied poems. 

(a) There are the lines bv Walton, printed beneath the 
p^rait frontispiece by Marshall to the Poewu of 1635. 
The portrait is dated " Aimo D"* 1591, aetatis suae z8.' 

"This was, for youth, strength, mirth, and wit, that 
Most count theh* golden age ; but 'twas not thine. 
Thine was thy later years, so much refined 
From youth's dross, mirth, and wit, as thy pure mind 
lliought (like the angels) nothing but the praise 
Of thy Creator in those last best days. 
Witness this book, thy Emblem, which begins 
With Love ; but ends with sighs and tears for sins." 

{b) There is the following passage in Walton's EUgy, 
wntten April 7, 1631, first printed together with the Life 
in the LX XX Sermons of z64a 

*' Did his youth scatter poetry, wherein 
Lay Love's philosophy ? was every sin 
Pictured in his sharp satires, made so foul. 
That some have fear'd sin's shapes, and kept their soul 
Safer by reading verse ; did he give days, 
F^t marble monumenti, to those whose praise 
He would perpetuate? Did he — I fear 
Envy will doubt— Ifaese at his twentieth year? 


Bat, more matured, did his rich soul oonoeive 
And in harmonious holy numbers weave 
A crown of sacred sonnets, fit to adorn 
A dying martyr's brow, or to be worn 
On that blest head of Mary Magdalen, 
After she wiped Christ's feet, but not till then ; 
Did he — ^fit for such penitents as she 
And he to use— leave us a Litany, 
Which all devout men love, and doubtless shallf 
As times grow better, grow more classical ? 
Did he write hymns, for piety and wit, 
Equal to those great grave Pnidentius writ? ' 


{c) Drummond of Hawthomden made the foUown 
note of a remark of Ben Jonson's to him, hi i6z8- 
(Conversaiiimst ed. Laing, p. 8) — 

" He esteemeth John Done the first poet in the worid 

some things : his verses of the Lost Chain he hath ] 

heart; and that passage of the Calm, That dust at 

ftathirs doe not sHrr^ all toas so quiet, Affirmeth Do 

to have written all his best pieces ere he was 8^ yean old 

(d) The evidence of Walton and Jonson is supports 
by John Chudleigh in his Elegy ^ printed with the Poei 

" Long dnce this task of tears from yon was diM 
Long since, O Poets, he did die to you. 
Or Idft you dead, when wit and he took flight 
On divine wings, and soar'd out of your sight. 
Preachers, 'tis you must weep ; the wit he taught 
You do enjoy ; the Rebeis which he brought 
From ancient discord, Giant faculties. 
And now no more religious enemies ; 
Honest to knowing, unto virtuous sweet. 
Witty to good, and learned to discreet. 
He reconciled, and bid the usurper go ; 
Dullness to vice, religion ought to flow ; 
He kept his loves, but not his objects ; wit 
He did not banish, but transplanted it, 
Taught it his place and use, and brought it home 
To Piety, which it doth best become ; 
He shew'd us how for sins we ought to sigh. 
And how to sing Christ's Epithalamy : " 


Donne was born in 1573, so that if we take Walton's 
•* twentieth year " and Jonson's ** twenty-five years" liter- 
ally, we get 1593 or 1598 as the date before which most 
of his secular poetry was written. It will be seen, how- 
ever, from the few poems which I have been able to give 
a date to in the notes, that no inconsiderable portion even 
of this division of his work belongs to periods later than 
x6oa 1 have not, however, been able to find that any of 
k, with the e3cception of one or two Funeral Elegies 
whidi can tiaiely be called secular, is subsequent to his 
ordination in 1615. On the other hand, the ascertained 
dates of the sacred poetry entirely confirm the statement 
that this was written during the latter part of his life, for 
tliese range fipom 1607 to 1631. Considering the whole 
matter, I have come to the following probable conclusion. 
The StUires and the Love-Paems (Songs and Sonnets and 
Elegies) belong to the beginning of his life. But even 
here, I think, it is possible to detect an earlier stratum of 
cynicism and ethical laxity, and a later stratum marked 
by intenser and more constant emotions, and by a grow- 
ing spirituality of thought. I see no reason why we should 
not date the change from the years which separated his 
first acquaintance with Anne More (1596?) from his 
marriage with h6r in x6oz. The Divine Poems^ as has 
been said, come last. The Verse Letters^ Funeral Elegies 
and Epiihalamia, both in date and in subject-matter, 
bridge the gulf between the two. Some of the Verse 
Letters^ such as the Storm and the Calm, belong to the 
earlier period, but a good many of them belong to 16x0 
or thereabouts, and in many ways they show Donne's 
poetic powers at their ripest. 

The first edition of the Poems was entered thus upon 
the Stationers' Registers (Arber, vol. iv.) — 

X3** Septembris, 1632. 
John Marriott Entered for his copy under the hands 

of Sir Henry Herbert and both the 
Wardens, a book of verse and Poems 
(the five Satires, the first, second, tenth, 
eleventh and thirteenth Elegies being 
excepted), and these before excepted to 
be his, when he brings lawful authority. 


written by Doctor John Dunn. 


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ence of the younger Donne himself. It has the follow- 
ing title-page — 

Poems | By J. D. | with | Elegies | on the 
author's death. I To WHICH I Is added divers 
copies under his own hand \ never be/ore in print, | 
London. | Printed for yohn Marriott and are | to 
be sold by Richard Marrioi at his shop | by Oitfit- 
ury Lane end over against the Inner | Temple gate, 

The Printer to the Understanders is replaced by the 
dedication to Lord Craven ; and this is foUowed by the 
Hexastichon Bibliopolae^ the Hexastichon ad BibliO' 
polam, and Ben Jonson's lines beginning "Donne, the 
delight oi Phoebus and each Muse." At the end of the 
Dhdne Poems is inserted a kind of appendix, containing, 
besides some additional poems, two other sets of verses 
on Donne from Ben Jonson's Epigrams of 1616, a prose 
sketch entitled News from the very Country, already 
prhited in the sixth edition of Sir Thomas Overbury^ 
Ckaaracters (1615), a burlesque Latin Catalogus Lib^ 
rorum (see Appendix D), and what appears to be a 
Latin address to Convocation. Mr. Hazlitt. in the first 
araries di his Collections, catalogues a copy of this edition, 
with the date 1649, and the same date is given by 
Anthony Wood in his Athenae (s. v. Donne). 

In this and the two following editions the El^ by 
Tha Browne was omitted, and three were added, signed 
Kspecdvely by Daniel Damelly, Sidney Godolphin, and 
J. Chudkigh. The fifth edition of 1654 resembles that 
of 1^, except that it is •* Printed by J, Flesher, and 
are to be sold by John Sweeting at the Angel in Popes- 
head iUley, 1654. 

The sixth and last of the seventeenth-century editions 
ii that of z66o. This again has a new title-page, on 
wfaidi the author's name appears for the first time in 

POEMS, etc. I ByJ John Donne, | late Dean of 
St Pauls I WITH I ELEGIES I on the | author's 
DEATH. I To which is added f Divers Copies under 
his own hand, | Never before printed. | In the 
SA yOY, I Printed by T. N, ioi Henry Herringman, 


at the Sign of | the Anchor^ in the lower-walk of 
Uie I New Exchange, 1669. 

Mr. Hazlitt {Handbook\ states that pages 95 to 98 of 
this edition, containing Elegies XIX. and XX., were sup- 
pressed. All the editions contain, as well as the poems, 
thirteen prose letters, of which eight are to Sir Henry 
Groodyere, one to La[dy] Gfoodvere ?]. one to the Countess 
of Bedford, and three to Mr. C7[eorge] 6[arrard]. 

The book evidently underwent considerable revision in 
1635, X650, and again in 1669. Not only were additional 
poems printed from time to time, but also there exists 
great divergence of reading between the various copies. 
Even Uie editions of 1639 and 1654, though they differ 
very slightly from those of 16^5 and 1650 respectively, 
cannot oe said to be altogether identical with them. 
These variations, which are especially noticeable in the 
Songs and Sonnets and in the Satires, are not merely 
due to the printers. In all probability most of Donne's 
poems existed in several more or less revised forms, and 
It was something a matter of chance which form was 
used for printing a particular edition. Nor can it be said 
that any one ^ition always gives the best text ; even 
for a single poem, sometimes one, sometimes another is 
to be preferred, though, as a rule, the edition of 1633 
is the most reliable, and the readings of 1669 are m 
many cases a return to it. 

Certain unpublished poems of Donne's, together with 
others which are not really his, were collected by Waldron 
in his Collection of Miscellanwus Poetry (i8g^), and by 
Sir John Simeon in one of the Philobiblon Society's tracts 
(1856). A few others may be gathered from various 
printed and manuscript sources. These will be found in 
the appendices to this edition. The eighteenth-century 
and modem editions are mostiv of littie value. That by 
Dr. Grosart, privately printed in the Fuller Worthies 
Library, 1873, is a work of much zeal, industry and learn- 
ing. I have derived benefit from it in many ways. 
But in contains many inaccuracies, and the text is 
spoilt throughout by being taken from bad MSS. instead 
of from the printed copies. 

E. K. C* 





For this ti ine I must speak only to you : at 
another, Readers may perchance serve my turn ; 
and I think this a way very free from exception, 
in hope that very few will have a mind to confess 
themselves ignorant. 

If you look for an Epistle, as you have before 
ordinary publications, I am sorry that I must 
deceive you; but you will not lay it to my 
charge, when you shall consider that this is not 
ordinary, for if I should say it were the best in 
this kind, that ever this kingdom hath yet seen ; 
he that would doubt of it must go out of the 
kingdom to inform himself, for the best judg- 
ments within it take it for granted. 

You may imagine (if it please you) that I 
could endear it unto you, by saying, that impor- 

< From the edition of 1633. 




baron of iiamfsted-marsham.^ 

My Lord, 

Many of these poems have, for sereral impres* 

sions, wandered up and down, trusting (as well they 

might) upon the author's reputation ; neither do they 

now complain of any injury but what may proceed 

either from the kindness'of the printer, or the courteiiy 

of the reader ; the one by adding something too much, 

lest any spark of this sacred fire might perish undis- 

cemed, the other by putting such an estimation upon 

the wit and fancy they find here, that they are content 

to use it as their own t as if a man should dig out the 

stones of a royal amphitheatre to build a stage for a 

country show. Amongst all the monsters this unlucky 

age has teemed with, I find none so prodigious as 

the poets of these later times, wherein men, as if they 

would level understandings too as well as estates, 

acknowledging no inequality of parts and judgment!<, 

^ From the edition of 1650. 


pretend as indifferently to the chair of wit as to the 
pulpit, and conceive themselres no less inspired with 
the spirit of poetiy than with that of religion : so it 
is not only the noise of dmms and trumpets which 
have drowned the Muses' harmony, or the fear that 
the Church's ruin will destroy their priests likewise, 
that now frights them from this country, where they 
have been so ingenuously received; but these rude 
pretenders to excellencies they unjustly own, who 
profonely rushing into Minerva's temple, with noisome 
airs blast the laurel which thunder cannot hurt In 
this sad condition these learned sisters are fled over 
to beg your lordship's protection, who have been so 
certain a patron both to arts and arms, and who in 
this general confusion have sp entirely preserved 
your honour, that in your lordship we may still read 
a most perfect character of what £ngland was in all 
her pomp and greatness, so that although these poems 
were formerly written upon several occasions, and to 
several persons, they now unite themselves, and are 
become one pyramid to set your lordship's statue 
upon, where you may stand like armed Apollo the 
defender of the Muses, encouraging the poets now 
alive to celebrate your great acts by affording your 
countenance to his poems that wanted only so noble 
a subject 

My Lord, 

Your most humble servant 

John Donne. 



I see in his last preached and printed book^ 
His picture in a sheet ; in Pouts Jlook^ 
And see his statue in a sheet of stone. 
And sure his body in the gra^je hath one; 
Those sheets present him dead; these if you buy. 
You have him living to eternity. 

Jo. Mar[riot]. 


In thy impression of Donn^ s poems rare. 
For his eternity thou hast tcCen care : 
' Ttoas well, and pious ; and for ever may 
He live; yet show I thee a better way ; 
Print but his sermons, and if those we buy, 
He, we^ and thou shall live f eternity. 

* From the edition of 1633. 
s From the edition of 1635. 




DofifUf tki dilight of Phalmi^ and each Mus€^ 
Who^ to thy one^ dU other brains refuse; 
Whose every tvorh, of thy most early wit. 
Came forth example^ and remains so, yet; 
Longer a knowing, than most wits do live ; 
And which no*n a fiction praise enough can give I 
To itf thy language, letters, arts, best life. 
Which might with half mankind maintain a strife ; 
All which I mean to praise, and yet, I would ; 
But leave, because I cannot as /should. 


^ From the edition of i6yx 



Mark but this flea, and mark in this, 
How little that which thou deniest me is ; 
It suck*d me first, and now sucks thee, 
And in this flea our two bloods mingled be. 
Thou know'st that this cannot be said 
A sin, nor shame, nor loss of maidenhead ; 

Yet this enjoys before it woo. 

And pamper*d swells with one blood made of two ; 

And this, alas ! is more than we would do. 

O stay, three lives in one flea spare, lo 

Where we almost, yea, more than married are. 
This flea is you and I, and this 
Our marriage bed, and marriage temple is. 

1. 3. 1669, Me it sucUd first and novo it sucks thee, 
I 5. 1669, Confess it. This 
1. 6. 166^, or shame , , , or 1. 9. 1669, could 
L II. iw)t nay 



Though parents grudge, and you, we're met. 
And cloister'd in these living walls of jet. 
Though use make you apt to kill me, 
Let not to that self-murder added be, 
And sacrilege, three sins in killing three. 

Cruel and sudden, hast thou since 

Purpled thy nail in blood of innocence? 20 

Wherein could this flea guilty be, 

Except in that drop which it suck'd from thee ? 

Yet thou triumph'st, and say'st that thou 

Find'st not thyself nor me the weaker now. 
'Tis true ; then learn how false fears be ; 
Just so much honour, when thou yield'st to me. 
Will waste, as this flea's death took life from thee. 

\, 22. i66g, that blood 



I WONDER, by my troth, what thou and I 

Did, till we loved? were we notwean'd till then? 

But suck'd on country pleasures, childishly ? 

Or snorted we in the Seven Sleepers* den ? 

'Twas so ; but this, all pleasures fancies be ; 

If ever any beauty I did see. 

Which I desired, and got, 'twas but a dream of thee. 

And now good-morrow to our waking souls, 

Which watch not one another out of fear ; 

For love all love of other sights controls, lo 

And makes one little room an everjrwhere. 

Let sea-discoverers to new worlds have gone ; 

Let maps to other, worlds on worlds have shown ; 

Let us possess one world ; each hath one, and is one. 

My face in thine eye, thine in mine appears. 

And true plain hearts do in the faces rest ; 

Where can we find two better hemispheres 

"Without sharp north, without declining west ? 

Whatever dies, was not mix'd equally ; 

If our two loves be one, or thou and I . 20 

Love so alike that none can slacken, none can die. 

L 3. 1669, childish pleasures, sillily 

1. 4. 1669, slumbered 1. 5. 1669, but as 

1. 13. 1669, to other worlds our world 

1. 17. 1635, ^//!w 1. 19. 1669, is not 

1. 20. 1635 both thou and I 

Love just alike in all, none of these loVes can die. 



- Go and catch a falling star, 

Get with child a mandrake root. 
Tell me where all past years are, 

Or who cleft the devil's foot, 
Teach me to hear mermaids singing, 
Or to keep off envy's stinging. 
And find 
What wind 
Serves to advance an honest mind. 

If thou be'st bom to strange sights, lo 

Things invisible to see, 
Ride ten thousand days and nights, 
Till age snow white hairs on thee, 
Thou, when thou retum'st, wilt tell me. 
All strange wonders that befell thee. 
And swear, 
No where 
Lives a woman true and fair. 

If thou find'st one, let me know ; 

Such a pilgrimage were sweet. 20 

Yet do not, I would not go, 

Though at next door we might meet. 

1. 3. 1669, tinuspatt L zz. 1(169, go su 


Though she were true when you met her. 
And last till you write your letter, 

Yet she 

Will be 
False, ere I come, to two or three. 

woman's constancy. 

Now thou hast loved me one whole day, 
To-morrow when thou leavest, what wilt thou say ? 
Wilt thou then antedate some new-made vow ? 

Or say that now 
We are not just those persons which we were ? 
Or that oaths made in reverential fear 
Of Love, and his wrath, any may forswear ? 
Or, as true deaths true marriages imtie. 
So lovers' contracts, images of those, 
Bind but till sleep, death's image, them unloose ? lo 

Of, your own end to justify. 
For having purposed change and falsehood, you 
Can have no way but falsehood to be true ? 
Vain lunatic, against these 'scapes I could 

Dispute, and conquer, if I would ; 

Which I abstain to do. 
For by to-morrow I may think so too. 

1. 37. 1669, ere she came 

I. 8. So 1633, 1669 ; 163S, For as, lines 8-10 being in 



I HAVE done one braver thing 

Than all the Worthies did ; 
And yet a braver thence doth spring. 

Which is, to keep that hid. 

It were but madness now to impart 

The skill of specular stone, 
When he, which can have leam'd the art 

To cut it, can find none. 

So, if I now should utter this, 

Others — ^because no more lO 

Such stuff to work upon, there i»— 

Would love but as before. * 

But he who loveliness within 
Hath found, all outward loathes, 

For he who colour loves, and skin, 
Loves but their oldest clothes. 

If, as I have, you also do 

Virtue in woman see. 
And dare love that, and say so too, 

And forget the He and She ; 20 

1. 18. So 1635 ; 1633, Virtut aiiirtd im woman si4 



And if this love, though placM so. 
From profane men you hide, 

Which will no faith on this bestow, 
Or, if they do, deride ; 

Then you have done a braver thing 
Than all the Worthies did ; 

And a braver thence will spring, 
Which is, to keep that hid. 


Bust old fool, unruly Sun, 
Why dost thou thus, 
Through windows, and through curtains, call on us ? 
Must to thy motions lovers* seasons run ? 
Saucy pedantic wretch, go chide 
Late school-bo3rs and sour prentices, 
Go tell court-huntsmen that the king will ride. 
Call country ants to harvest offices ; 
Love, all alike, no season knows nor clime, 
Nor hours, days, months, which are the rags of lo 

L 3. 1669. look onus L 6. 1669, or sour 



Thy beams so reverend, and strong 

Why shooldst thoa think ? 
I could eclipse and cloud them with a wink, 
But that I would not lose her sight so long. 

If her eyes have not blinded thine. 

Look, and to-morrow late tell me^ 
Whether both th' Indias of spice and mine 
Be where thou leftist them, or lie here with me. 
Ask for those kings whom thou saw'st yesterday, 
And thou shalt hear, " All here in one bed lay." 20 

She's all states, and all princes I ; 

Nothing else is ; 
Princes do but play us ; compared to this, 
All honour's mimic, all wealth alchemy. 

Thou, Sun, art half as happy as we^ 

In that the world's contracted thus ; 
Thine age asks ease, and since thy duties be 
To warm the world, that's done in warming us. 
Shine here to us, and thou art everywhere ; 
This bed thy centre is, these walls thy sphere. 30 

1. II. 163s, 

Thy beams so reverend^ and strong 

Dost thou not think 
I could eclipse and cloud them with a winh. 
But that I would not lose her sij^ht so long 9 
L 18. 1635, left them 



I CAN love both £a,ir and brown ; 

Her whom abundance melts, and her whom want 

betrays ; 
Her who loves loneness best, and her who masks and 

Her whom the country form'd, and whom the town ; 
Her who believes, and her who tries ; 
Her who still weeps with spongy eyes, 
And her who is dxy cork, and never cries. 
I can love her, and her, and you, and you ; 
I can love any, so she be not true. 

Will no other vice content you ? lo 

Will it not serve your turn to do as did your mothers? 
Or have you all old vices spent and now would find 

out others ? 
Or doth a fear that men are true torment you ? 
O we are not, be not you so ; 
ILet me — and do you — twenty know ; 
Rob me, but bind me not, and let me go. 
Must I, who came to travel thorough you, 
Grow your fix'd subject, because you are true ? 

L 3. 1669, Her who loves lovers best, and her who 
sports and plays 

L 12. i66g, vices worn 

l> 17. So 163s ; 1633 travaiU 


Vemn heard me sigh this soi^ ; 

And bj lore's sweetest put, yariety, she swore, 20 

She heard not this till now \ it shosld be so no more. 

She went, examined, and letam'd ere long. 

And said, " Alas 1 lome two or three 

Poor heretics in loie there be, 

Whidi think to stablish dangerous constancy. 

But I haTe told them, ' Since joa will be tme. 

You shall be true to them who're fiodse to you.' ** 

love's usury. 

Foe. every hour that thou w3t spare me now, 

I will allow, 
Usurious god of love, twenty to thee, 
When with my brown my grey hairs equal be. 
Till then, Love, let my body range, and let 
Me travel, sojourn, snatch, plot, have, forget. 
Resume my last year's relict ; think that yet 

We'd never met 

1. 19. 1669, sing this song 

L 2a 1669, sweetest stoeet 

1. 31. So 1635 ; 1633, and that it 

1. 5. So 163s ; 1633, raigne 

1. 6. So 1633, 1669 ; 163s, maicht plot, have, forget 

L 7. 1669, relique 


Let me think any rival's letter mine, 

And at next nine lo 

Keep midnight's promise ; mistake by the way 
The maid, and tell the lady of that delay ; 
Only let me love none ; no, not the sport 
From country grass to confitures of court. 
Or city's quelque-choses ; let not report . 

My mind transport 

This baigain's good ; if when I'm old, I be 

Inflamed by thee. 
If thine own honour, or my shame and pain. 
Thou covet most, at that age thou shalt gain. 20 

Do thy will then ; then subject and degree 
And fruit of love, Love, I submit to thee. 
Spare me till then ; I'll bear it, though she be 

One that love me. 

1. la. 1669, her delay 

1. 15. So 1635 ; 1633, 1669 omit not 

1. 19. 1669, or pain 

1. 24. So 1635 ; 1633, 1669, loves ms 



For God's sake hold jour tongue^ and let me love ; 
Or chide my palsy, or my gout ; 
My five grey hairs, or ruin'd fortune float ; 
With wealth your state, your mind with arts improre ; 
Take you a course, get you a place,. 
Observe his Honour, or his Grace ; 
Or the king's real, or his stamp'd face 
Contemplate ; what you will, approye» 
So you will let me love. 

Alas ! alas 1 who's injured by my love ? lo 

What merchant's ships have my sighs drown'd ? 
Who says my tears have overflow'd his ground ? 
When did my colds a forward spring remove ? 
When did the heats which my veins fill 
Add one more to the plaguy bill ? 
Soldiers find wars, and lawyers find out still 
Litigious men, which quarrels move. 
Though she and I do love. 

Call's what you will, we are made such by love ; 
Call her one, me another fly, 20 

We're tapers too, and at our own cost die, 

And we in us find th' eagle and the dove. 

1. 3. So 1633, 163s, true grey hairs ; 1669, five . , . 

1. 14. 1669, reins L 15. 1669, one man 

1 17. 1669, whom 1. z8. 1669, While 


The phoenix riddle hath more wit 
By US ; we two being one, are it ; 
SOy to one neutral thing both sexes fit. 
We die and rise the same, and prove 
M)rsterious by this love. 

We can die by it, if not live by love, 
And if unfit for tomb or hearse 
Our legend be, it will be fit for verse ; 30 

And if no piece of chronicle we prove, 
We'll build in sonnets pretty rooms ; 
As well a well-wrought urn becomes 
The greatest ashes, as half-acre tombs. 
And by these hjrmns all shall approve 
Us canonized for love ; 

And thus invoke us, "You, whom reverend love 
Made one another's hermitage ; 
You, to whom love was peace, that now is rage ; 
Who did the whole world's soul contract, and 
drove 40 

Into the glasses of your eyes ; 
So made such mirrors, and such spies. 
That they did all to you epitomize — 
Countries, towns, courts beg from above 
A pattern of your love." 

1. 29. So 1669 ; 1633, ^o^^s ^^^ 

1. 35' 1635. those 

L 45. So 1669 ; 1633, cur love 



I AM two fools, I know, 

For loving, and for saying so 
In whining poetry ; 
But Where's that wise man, that would not be I, 

If she would not deny ? 
Then as th' earth's inward narrow crooked lanes 

Do purge sea water's fretful salt away, 
I thought, if I could draw my pains 

Through rhyme's vexation, I should them allay. 
Grief brought to numbers cannot be so fierce, lo 
For be tames it, that fetters it in verse. 

But when I have done so. 

Some man, his art and voice to show, 
Doth set and sing my pain ; 
And, by delighting many, frees again 

Grief, which verse did restrain. 
To love and grief tribute of verse belongs. 

But not of such as pleases when 'tis read* 
Both are increasM by such songs. 

For both theiciriumphs so are published, 20 
And I, which was two fools, do so grow three. 
Who are a little wise, the best fools be. 

L 4. 1669, the wiser man 
1. 10. 1669, Hunger 1. 13. 1669, or voice 



If yet I have not all thy love. 
Dear, I shall never have it all ; 
I cannot breathe one other sigh, to move, 
Nor can intreat one other tear to fall ; 
And all my treasiire, which should purchase thee. 
Sighs, tears, and oaths, and letters I have spent ; 
Yet no more can be due to me, 
Than at the bargain made was meant 
If then thy gift of love were partial. 
That some to me, some should to others fall, 10 
Dear, I shall never have thee all. 

Or if then thou gavest me all, 
All was but all, which thou hadst then ; 
But if in thy heart since there be or shall 
New love created be by other men. 
Which have their stocks entire, and can in tears, 
In sighs, in oaths, and letters, outbid me, 
This new love may beget new fears, 
For this love was not vow'd by thee. 
And yet it was, thy gift being general ; 20 

The ground, thy heart, is mine ; what ever shall 
Grow there, dear, I should have it all. 

1.9. 1669, was I. II. 1635, // all 

1. 12. 1669, givest L 17. 1635, in letters 

L ai. So 1633, 1669 ; 1635, was mine 

i6 />e>AiVZ*5 POEMS. 

Yet I would not Iutc all ycL 

He that hath all can hate no more ; 

And since m j lore doth ereiy daj admit 

New growth, thoa shonldst haTe new rewards ir 

Thoa canst not ererx daj ghre me th j heart. 
If thoa canst giTe it, then thoa nerer gavest it ; 
Lore's riddles are, that thoogh thj heart depart. 
It stays at home, and thoa widi losing savest it ; 50 
But we will have a way more liberal. 
Than changing hearts, to join them ; so we shall 
Be one, and one another^s alL 


Sweetest love, I do not go, 

For weariness of thee, 
Nor in hope the world can show 

A fitter love for me ; 
Bat since that I 
At the last most part, 'tis best. 
Thus to use myself in jest 

By feigned deaths to die. 

L 31. 1669, wUlicvt L 3a. Z669, jam ms 

U. 6-8. §0 163s ; 

1633— il/«j/ dU at last, 'tis btst. 
To use myse^injtst 
Thus by feigned deaths to die* 

1669 — Must die at last, 'tis best. 
Thus to use myself in jest 
By feigned death to die* 


Yesternight the sun went hence. 

And yet is here to-day ; 10 

He hath no desire nor sense. 

Nor half so short a way ; 
Then fear not me. 
But believe that I shall make 
Speedier journeys, since I take 

More wings and spurs than he. 

O how feeble is man's power, 

That if good fortune fall, 
Cannot add another hour, 

Nor a lost hour recall ; 20 

But come bad chance. 
And we join to it our strength, 
And we teach it art and length, 

Itself o'er us to advance. 

When thou sigh'st, thou sigh*st not wind. 

But sigh'st my soul away ; 
When thou weep*st, unkindly kind. 

My life's blood doth decay. 
It cannot be 
That thou loyest me as thou say'st, 30 

If in thine my life thou waste, 

That art the best of me. 

1. 15. 1669, Hastier 
L 35. 1635, HO wind 

L 33. So 163s ; 1633, Thou art; 1669, Which art the life 
VOL. I. 2 


Let not thy divining heart 

Forethink me any ill ; 
Destiny may take thy party 

And may thy fears fulfil. 
But think tliat we 
Are but tum*d aside to sleep. 
They who one another keep 

Alive, ne'er parted be. 40 


When last I died, and, dear, I die 

As often as from thee I go. 

Though it be but an hour ago 

— And lovers* hours be full eternity— 

I can remember yet, that I 

Something did say, and something did bestow ; 

Though I be dead, which sent me, I might be 

Mine own executor, and legacy. 

1. 36. So 1633. 1669 ; 163s. make 
1. 38. 1669, laid aside 
1. I. So 1669 ; 1633, / died last 
1. 7. So 1669; 1633, / should be; 1635, which meant 
met I should be 



I heard me say, ** Tell her anon, 

That myself," that is you, not I, lo 

** Did kill me," and when I felt me die, 

I bid me send my heart, when I was gone ; 

But I alas 1 could there find none ; 

When I had ripp'd, and searched where hearts should 

It kiird me again, that I who still was tru« 
In life, in my last will should cozen you. 

Yet I found something like a heart, 

But colours it, and comers had ; 

It was not good, it was not bad. 

It was entire to none, and few had part ; 20 

As good as could be made by art 

It seemed, and therefore for our loss be sad. 

I meant to send that heart instead of mine, 

But O ! no man could hold it, for 'twas thine. 

L 14. So 1635 ; 1633, ripp'd me , , , did lie 
L as. So 1669; 1633, lossa sad 



O ! DO not die, for I shall hate 
All women so, when thou art gone^ 

That thee I shall not celebrate, 
When I remember thou wast one. 

But yet thou canst not die, I know ; 

To leave this world behind, is death ; 
But when thou from this world wilt go, 

The whole world vapours with thy breath. 

Or if, when thou, the world's sool, go'st. 
It stay, 'tis bat thy carcase then ; lo 

The fairest woman, but thy ghost. 
But corrupt worms, the worthiest men. 

O wrangling schools, that search what fire 
Shall bum this world, had none the wit 

Unto this knowledge to aspire. 
That this her fever might be it ? 

And yet she cannot waste by this, 
Nor long bear this torturing wrong. 

For more corruption needful is, 
To fuel such a fever long. 20 

L 8. 1669, ift tky breath L 18. 1669, endure 


These burning fits but meteors be. 
Whose matter in thee is soon spent ; 

Thy beauty, and all parts, which are thee. 
Are anchangeabl«_finnament. 

Yet 'twas of my mind, seizing thee, 
Though it in thee cannot pers^ver ; 

For I had rather owner be 
Of thee one hour, than all else ever. 2S 


Twice or thrice had I loved thee. 

Before I knew thy face or name ; 

So in^a voice, so in a shapeless flame^ 
Angels affect us oft, and worshipped be. 

Still when, to where thou wert, I came, 
Some lovely glorious nothing did I see. 

But since my soul, whose child love is. 
Takes limbs of flesh, and else could nothing do, 

More subtle than the parent is 
Love must not be, but take a body too ; 10 

And therefore what thou wert, and who, 
I bid love ask, and now * 

That it assume thy body, I allow. 
And fix itself in thy lips, eyes, and brow. 

L 23. 1669, soon is 1. 24. 1669, An 

L 25. 1669, And here as L 27. 1669, Yet, 

L 6. So 1669 ; Z633, 1 did L 14. So 1669 ; 1633, lip, eye 


Wliilst thus to ballast love I thought, 

And so more steadily to have gone, 

With wares which would sink admiration, 
I saw I had love's pinnace overfiaught ; 

Thy every hair for love to work upon 
Is much too much ; some fitter must be sought ; 20 

For, nor in nothing, nor in things 
Extreme, and scattering bright, can loire inhere ; 

Then as an angel fiaice and wings 
Of air, not pure as it, yet pure doth wear. 

So thy love may be my love's sphere ; 
Just such disparity 
As is 'twixt air's and angels' purity, 
^wixt women's love, and men's, will ever bew 


Stay, O sweet, and do not rise ; 
The light that shines comes from thine eyes ; 
The day breaks not, it is my heart, 
Because that you and I must part 

Stay, or else my joys will die 

And perish in their infancy. 

1. 19. So 1669 ; 1633, Every thy 
L 27. So 1669 ; 1633, air 


[another of the same.] 

Tis trae, 'tis day ; what though it be ? 

O, wilt thoa therefore rise from me ? 

Why should we rise because 'tis light ? 

Did we lie down because 'twas night ? 

Love, which in spite of darkness brought us hither, 

Should in despite of light keep us together. 

Light hath no tongue, but is all eye ; 

If it could speak as well as spy, 

This were the worst that it could say, 

That being well I fain would stay, lo 

And that I loved my heart and honour so. 

That I would not from him, that had them, go. 

Must business thee from hence remove ? 

O ! that's the worst disease of love, 

The poor, the foul, the false, love can 

Admit, but not the busied man. 

He which hath business, and makes love, doth do 

Such wrong, as when a married man doth woo. 

L 6. So 1633, 1669 ; 1635, spiU 

1. la. 1669, from her 

L 18. So 1633, 1669 ; 1635, should woo 



All kings, and all their favoarites, 

All glory of honours, beauties, wits. 
The sun itself, which makes timei as they pass. 
Is elder by a year now than it was 
When thou and I first one another saw. 
All other things to their destruction draw. 

Only our love hath no decay ; 
This no to-morrow hath, nor yesterday ; 
Running it never runs from us away, 
But truly keeps his first, last, everlasting day. lo 

Two graves must hide thine and my corse ; 

If one might, death were no divorce. 
Alas ! as well as other princes, we 
— Who prince enough in one another be^ 
Must leave at last in death these eyes and ears. 
Oft fed with true oaths, and with sweet salt tears ; 

But souls where nothing dwells but love « 

— All other thoughts being inmates — ^then shall prove 
This or a love increasM there above, 
When bodies to their graves, souls fix)m their graves 
remove. 20 

And then we shall be throughly blest ; 
But now no more than all the rest. 

L 3. So 1633, 1669 ; 163s, <u these pass; 1650, times 


Here upon earth we're kings, and none but we 
Can be such kings, nor of such subjects be. 
Who is so safe as we ? where none can do 
Treason to us, except one of us two. 
True and false fears let us refrain, 
Let us love nobly, and live, and add again 
Years and years unto years, till we attain 
To write threescore; this is the second of our reign. 30 



My name engraved herdn 
Doth contribute my firmness to this glass. 
Which ever since that charm hath been 
As hard, as that which graved it was ; 
Thine eye will give it price enough, to mock 
The diamonds of either rock. 


Tis much that glass should be 
As all-confessing, and through-shine as I ; 
Tis more that it shows thee to thee. 
And dear reflects thee to thine eye. 10 

But all such rules love's magic can undo ; 
Here you see me, and I am you. 

l 23. 1669 omits non$ 1. 24. 1669, Nont are 
L Z2. Z669, and I su you 



As no one point, nor dash, 
Which are but accessories to this name, 
The showers and tempests can outwash 
So shall all times find me the same ; 
Vou this entireness better may fulfill. 
Who have the pattern with you still. 


Or if too hard and deep 
This learning be, for a scratched name to 
teach, 20. 

It as a given death's head keep. 
Lovers' mortality to preach ; 
Or think this ragged bony name to be 
My ruinous anatomy. 


Then, as all my souls be 
Emparadised in you — in whom alone 
I understand, and grow, and see-^ 
The rafters of my body, bone, 
Being still with you, the muscle, sinew, and 
Which tile this house, will come again. 30 



Till my return repair 
And recompact my scatter*d body so, 
As all the virtuous powers which are 
Fix'd in the stars are said to flow 
Into such characters as gravM be 

When these stars have supremacy, 


So since this name was cut, 
When love and grief their exaltation had. 
No door 'gainst this name's influence shut. 
As much more loving, as more sad, 40 

Twill make thee ; and thou shouldsti till I re- 
Since I die daily, daily mourn. 


When thy inconsiderate hand 
Flings ope this casement, with my trembling 
To look on one, whose wit or land 
New battery to thy heart may frame. 
Then think this name alive, and that thou thus 
In it offend'st my Genius. 

1. 36. 1669, thost stars had 1. 48. 16691 offends 



And when thy melted maid, 
Corrupted by thy lover's gold and page, 50 

His letter at thy pillow hath laid, 
Disputed it, and tamed thy rage, 
And thou begin'st to thaw towards him, for this, 
May my name step in, and hide his. 

And if this treason go 
To an overt act and that thou write again. 
In superscribing, this name flow 
Into thy fancy from the pane ; 
So, in forgetting thou rememb'rest right. 

And unaware to me shalt write. 60 


But glass and lines must be 

No means our firm substantial love to keep ; 

Near death inflicts this lethargy. 

And this I murmur in my sleep ; 

Impute this idle talk, to that I go. 

For dying men talk often so. 

I. 5a 1669, or page 
1. 52. 1669. Disputed thou it, and tame thy rage 
1. 53. 1669, If thou to him begin* st to thaw 
1. 57. 1669, my 1. 58. Z635, pern L 64. 1635, thus 



Blasted with $ighs, and surrounded with teais. 

Hither I come to seek the spring, 
And at mine eyes, and at mine ears, 

Receive such halms as else cure erery thing. 

But O ! self-traitor, I do hring 
The spider Love, which transubstantiates all, 
And can convert manna to gall ; 
And that this place may thoroughly he thought 
True paradise, I have the serpent brought. 

Twere wholesomer for me that winter did 10 

Benight the glory of this place, 
And that a grave frost did forbid 

These trees to laugh and mock me to my face ; 

But that I may not this disgrace 
Endure, nor yet leave loving. Love, let mp 
Some senseless piece of this place be ; 
Make me a mandrake, so I may grow here, 
Or a stone fountain weeping out my year. 

1. 4« 1635, balm as elsi cures 

L 6. 1669, spider* s Love 

L 14. 1669, since I cannot 

1. 15. 1635, nor leave this garden 

I. x8. So 1633, 1669 ; 163s, the year 


Hither with crystal phials, lovers, come, 
And take my tears, which are love's wine» 20 

And try your mistress' tears at home. 
For all are false, that taste not jost like mine. 
Alas ! hearts do not in eyes shine. 

Nor can you more judge women's thoughts by teiu:s, 

Than by her shadow what she wears. 

O perverse sex, where none is true but she, 

Who's therefore true, because her truth kills me. 


Tll tell thee now (dear love) what thou shalt do 
To anger destiny, as she doth us ; 
How I shall stay, though she eloign me thus, 
And how posterity shall know it too ; 
How thine may out-endure 
Sibyl's glory, and obscure 
Her who from Pindar could allure. 
And her, through whose help Lncan is not lame, 
And her, whose book (they say) Homer did find, and 

Study our manuscripts, those myriads 10 

Of letters, which have past 'twixt thee and me ; 
Thence write our annals, and in them will be 
To all whom love's subliming fire invades 
Rule and example found ; 
There the faith of any ground 
No schismatic will dare to wound, 


That sees, how Love this grace to ns affords, 
To make, to keep, to nse^ to be these his records. 

This book* as long-lived as the elements, 
Or as the world's form, this all-gravH tome 20 
In cypher writ, or new made idiom ; 
We for Love's deigy only are instruments ; 
'When this book is made thus, 
Shonld again the ravenous 
Vandals and the Goths invade as, 
Learning were safe ; in this our universe. 
Schools might learn sciences^ spheres music, angels 

Here Love's divines— since all divinity 
Is love or wonder — may find all they seek, 
Whether abstract spiritual love they like, 30 

Their souls exhaled with what they do not see ; 
Or, loth so to amuse 
Faith's infirmity, they choose 
Something which they may see and use ; 
For, though mind be the heaven, where love doth sit, 
Beauty a convenient type may be to figure it. 

Here more than in their books may lawyers find, 
Both by what titles mistresses are ours, 
And how prerogative these states devours, 

Transferred from Love himself to womankind ; 40 

1. 20. 163s, all-graved to me ; 1669, all-graved tomb 
L 30. 1650, abstracted L 33. 1669, infirmities 


Who, though from heart and eyes. 
They exact great subsidies, 
Forsake him who on them relies ; 

And for the cause, honour, or conscience give ; 

Chimeras vain as they or their prerogative. 

Here statesmen — or of them, they which can read- 
May of their occupation find the grounds ; 
Love, and th^ir art, aliVe it deadly wounds. 
If to consider what 'tis, one proceed. 

In both they do excel, 50 

Who the present govern well, 
Whose weakness none doth, or dares tell ; 
In this thy book, such will there something see, 
As in the Bible some can find out alchemy. 

Thus vent thy thoughts ; abroad I'll study thee. 
As he removes far off, that great heights takes ; 
How great love is, presence best trial makes. 
But s^bs^nce tries how long this love will be i 
To take a latitude 

Sun, or stars, are fitliest view'd 60 

At their brightest, but to conclude 
Of longitudes, what other way haye we, 
But to mark when and where the dark eclipses be ? 

1. 53. So 1633, 1669 : 1635, their tiothing 
I. 55. So 1633, 1669 : 1635, Tvent 



Good we must love, and must hate ill. 
For ill is ill, and good good still ; 

But there are things indifferent, 
Which we may neither hate, nor love, 
But one, and then another prove. 

As we shall find our fancy bent. 

If then at first wise Nature had 
Made women either good or bad, 

Then some we might hate, and some choose ; 
But since she did them so create, 10 

That we may neither love, nor hate. 

Only this rests, all all may use. 

If they were good, it would be seen ; 
Good is as visible as greep. 

And to all eyes itself betrays. 
If they were bad, they could not last ; 
Bad doth itself and others waste ; 

So th«y deserve nor blame, nor praise. 

But they are ours as fruits are ours ; 

He that but tastes, he that devours, 20 

And he that leaves all, doth as well ; 
Changed loves are but changed sorts of meat ; 
And when he hath the kernel eat, 

"Who doth not fling away the shell ? 

1. 4. So 1635 J i^SSi ^^^^ ^^^ 
1. 12. 1669, all men 
VOL. I. 3 



love's growth. 

I SCARCE believe my love to be so pure 

As I had thought it was» 

Because it doth endure 
Vicissitude, and season, as the grass ; 
Methinks I lied all winter, when I swore 
My love was infinite, if spring make it more. 

But if this medicine, love, which cures all sorrow 
With more, not only be no quintessence, 
But mix'd of all stuf&, vexing soul, or sense, 
And of the sun his active vigour borrow, lo 

Love's not so pure, and abstract as they use 
To say, which have no mistress but their Muse ; 
But as all else, being elemented too, 
Love sometimes would contemplate, sometimes do. 

And yet no greater, but more eminent. 

Love by the spring is grown ; 

As in the firmament 
Stars by the sun are not enlarged, but shown. 
Gentle love deeds, as blossoms on a bough, 
From love's awaken'd root do bud out now. 20 

1. 9. So 1635 ; 16^^, paining 

]» 10. So 1635 ; 1633, working vigour 


If, as in water stirr*d more circles be 
Prodaced by one, love such additions take, 
Those like so many spheres bat one heaven make, 
For they are all concentric nnto thee ; 
And though each spring do add to love new heat, 
As princes do in times of action get 
New taxes, and remit them not in peace, 
No winter shall abate this spring's increase. 

love's exchange. 

Lo\'E, any devil else but you 

Would for a given soul give something too. 

At court your fellows every day 

Give th' art of rhyming, huntsmanship, or play, 

For them which were their own before ; 

Only I have nothing, which gave more, 

But am, alas 1 by being lowly, lower. 

I ask no dispensation now, 

To falsify a tear, or sigh, or vow ; 

I do not sue from thee to draw 10 

A non obstante on nature's law ; 

These are prerogatives, they inhere 

In thee and thine ; none should forswear 

Except that he Love's minion were. 

1 28. So 163s : 1633, the springs 
L 9. 1669, a sight a vow 


Give me thy weakness, make me blind, 

Both ways, as thou and thine, in eyes and mind ; 

Love, let me never know that this 

Is love, or, that love childish is ; 

Let me not know that others know 

That she knows my pains, lest that so 20 

A tender shame make me mine own new woe. 

If thou give nothing, yet thou 'rt just, 

Because I would not thy first motions trust ; 

Small towns which stand stiff, till great shot 

Enforce them, by war's law condition not ; 

Such in Love's warfare is my case i 

I may not article for grace. 

Having put Love at last to show this face. 

This face, by which he could command 

And change th* idolatry of any land, 30 

This face, which, wheresoever it comes. 

Can call vow'd men from cloisters, dead from tombs. 

And melt both poles at once, and store 

Deserts with cities, and make more 

Mines in the earth, than quarries were before. 

For this Love is enraged with me, 

Yet kills not ; if I must example be 

To future rebels, if th* unborn 

Must learn by my being cut up and torn. 

Kill, and dissect me. Love ; for this 40 

Torture against thine own end is ; 

Rack'd carcasses make ill anatomies. 

1. 28 1669, his face 



Some man unworthy to be possessor 
Of old or new love, himself being false or weak, 

Thought his pain and shame would be lesser. 
If on womankind he might his anger wreak ; 
And thence a law did grow, 
One might but one man know ; 
But are other creatures so ? 

Are sun, mooi^or stars by law forbidden 
To smile where they list, or lend away their light ? 
Are birds divorced or are they chidden 10 

If they leave their mate, or lie abroad a night ? 
Beasts do no jointures lose 
Though they new lovers choose ; 
But we are made worse than those. 

"Whoe'er rigg'd fair ships to lie in harbours, 
And not to seek lands, or not to deal with all ? 

Or built fair houses, set trees, and arbours. 
Only to lock up, or else to let them fall ? 
Good is not good, unless 
A thousand it possess, 20 

But doth waste with greediness. 

L 3. 1669, this pain 1. 9. 1669, bend away 

1. II. 1650, meatit 1669, meat 1. 11. 1669, all night 
1. 15. So 1669 : 1633, ship 

L 16. 1669, to seek new lauds 1. 17. 1650, build 



Dear love, for nothing less than thee 
Would I have broke this happy dream ; 

It was a theme 
For reason, much too strong for fentasy. 
Therefore thou waked'st me wisely ; yet 
My dream thou brokest not, but continued'st it. 
Thou art so true that thoughts of thee suffice 
To make dreams truths, and fables histories ; 
Enter these arms, for since thou thought*st it best. 
Not to dream all my dream, let's act the rest. lo 

As lightning, or a taper*s lighty 

Thine eyes, and not thy noise waked me ; 

Yet I thought thee 
— For thou lovest truth — an angel, at first sight ; 
But when I saw thou saw'st my heart. 
And knew'st my thoughts beyond an angeFs art. 
When thou knew'st what I dreamt, when thou knew'st 

Excess of joy would wake me, and camest then, 
I must confess, it could not choose but be 
Profane, to think thee any thing but thee. 2q 

1. 6. 1669, break*st . • • conHnuest 
1. 7. So 163s ; 1633, so truth 
L 17. Z669, th€n thou kneuis$ 


Coming and stajring show'd thee, thee, 
But rising makes me doubt, that now 

Thou art not thou. 
That love is weak where fear*s as strong as he ; 
*Tis not all spirit, pure and brave. 
If mixture it of fear, shame, honour have ; 
Perchance as torches, which must ready be, 
Men light and put out, so thou deal'st with me ; 
Thou camest to kindle, go'st to come ; then I 
Will dream that hope again, but else would die. 30 


Let me pour forth 
My tears before thy face, whilst I stay here, 
For thy face coins them, and thy stamp they bear. 
And by this mintage they are something worth. 

For thus they be 

Pregnant of thee ; 
Fruits of much grief they are, emblems of more ; 
When a tear falls, that thou fall'st which it bore ; 
So thou and I are nothing then, when on a divers 

L 24. i(^, fears are 1. 29. 1669, cofn*st 


On a round ball lo 

A workman, that hath copies by, can lay 
An Europe, Afric, and an Asia, 
And quickly make that, which was nothii^ alL 

So doth each tear. 

Which thee doth wear, 
A globe, yea world, by that impression grow. 
Till thy tears mix'd with mine do overflow 
This world, by waters sent from thee, my heaven 
dissolved so. 

O ! more than moon, 
Draw not up seas to drown me in thy sphere ; 20 
Weep me not dead, in thine arms, but forbear 
To teach the sea, what it may do too soon ; 

Let not the wind 

Example find 
To do me more harm than it purposeth ; 
Since thou and I sigh one another's breath, 
Whoe'er sighs most is cruellest, and hastes the other's 

1. 2a 1669, thy seas 


love's alchemy. 

Some that have deeper digg'd love's mine than I, 
Say, where his centric happiness doth lie. 

I hav6 loved, and got, and told. 
But should I love, get, tell, till I were old, 
I should not find that hidden mystery. 

O ! 'tis imposture all ; . 
And as no chemic yet th' elixir got, 

But glorifies his pregnant pot. 

If by the way to him befall 
Some odoriferous thing, or medicinal, 10 

So, lovers dream a rich and long delight, 
But get a winter-seeming summer's night. 

Our ease, our thrift, our honour, and our day. 
Shall we for this vain bubble's shadow pay ? 

Ends love in this, that my man 
Can be as happy as I can, if he can 
Endure the short scorn of a bridegroom's play ? 

That loving wretch that swears, 
'Tis not the bodies marry, but the minds. 

Which he in her angelic finds, 20 

Would swear as justly, that he hears. 
In that day's rude hoarse minstrelsy, the spheres. 
Hope not for mind in women ; at their best, 
Sweetness and wit they are, but mummy, possess'd. 



Whoever guesses, thinks, or dreams, he knows 
Who is my mistress, wither by this curse ; 
Him, only for his purse, 
May some dull whore to love dispose, 
And then yield unto all that are his foes ; 
May he be scom'd by one, whom all else scorn, 
Forswear to others, what to her he hath sworn, 
With fear of missing, shame of getting, torn. 

Madness his sorrow, gout his cramps, may he 
Make, by but thinking who hath made them such ; lo 
And may he feel no touch 
Of conscience, but of fame, and be 
Anguish'd, not that 'twas sin, but that 'twas she ; 
Or may he for her virtue reverence 
One that hates him only for impotence, 
And equal traitors be she and his sense. 

1. 3. So 1669 ; 1633, His only, and only kis purse 

1. 4. So 1669 ; 1633, dull heart 

1. 5. So 1669 ; 1633, she yield then to 

1. 9. So 1669 ; 1633, cramp 

1. 10. So 1669 ; 1633, him such 

IL 14-17- So 163s ; 1633, 

In early and long scarceness may he rot, 
For land which had heen his, if he had not 
Himself incestuously an heir begot. 


May he dream treason, and believe that he 
Meant to perform it, and confess, and die. 
And no record tell why ; 
His sons, which none of his may be, 20 

Inherit nothing but his infamy ; 

Or may he so long parasites have fed, 

That he would fain be theirs whom he hath bred, 

And at the last be circumcised for bread. 

The venom of all stepdames, gamesters* gall» 
What tyrants and their subjects interwish. 

What plants, mine, beasts, fowl, fish» 
Can contribute, all ill, which all 
Prophets or poets spake, and all which shall 
Be annex'd in schedules unto this by me, 30 

Fall on that man ; for if it be a she 
Nature beforehand hath out-cursed me. 


Send home my long stray'd eyes to me. 
Which, O ! too long have dwelt on thee ; 
Yet since there they have leam*d such ill, 
Such forced fashions. 
And false passions. 
That they be 
Made by thee 
Fit for no good sight, keep them stilL 

I 3. 1669, But if 


Send home my harmless heart again. 
Which no unworthy thought could stain ; lo 
But if it be taught by thine 
To make jestings 
Of pretestings, 

And break both 

Word and oath, 

Keep it, for then 'tis none of mine. 

Yet send me back my heart and eyes. 
That I may know, and see thy lies, 
And may laugh and joy, when thou 

Art in anguish 20 

And dost languish 
For some one 
That will none. 
Or prove as false as thou art now. 

1. i6. 1669, Keep it still, Uis 
L 24. 1669, dost now 



'Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's, 
Lucy*s, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks ; 
The sun is spent, and now his flasks 
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays ; 
The world's whole sap is sunk ; 
The general balm th' hydroptic earth hath drunk, 
Whither, as to the bed's-feet, life is shrunk, 
Dead and interred ; yet all these seem to laugh. 
Compared with me, who am their epitaph. 

Study me then, you who shall lovers be 10 

At the next world, that is, at the next spring ; 
For I am a very dead thing. 
In whom Love wrought new alchemy. 
For his art did express 
A quintessence even from nothingness. 
From dull privations, and lean emptiness ; 
He ruin'd me, and I am re-begot 
Of absence, darkness, death — things which are 

1 12. So 1635 ; 1633, every dead thing 


All others, from all things, draw all that's good, 
Life, soul, form, spirit, whence they being have ; 20 

I, by Love's limbec, am the grave 

Of all, that's nothing. Oft a flood 
Have we two wept, and so 
Drown'd the whole world, as two ; oft did we grow, 
To be two chaoses, when we did show 
Care to aught else ; and often absences 
Withdrew our souls, and made us carcasses. 

But I am by her death — ^which word wrongs her — 
Of the first nothing the elixir grown ; 

Were I a man, that I were one 30 

I needs most know ; I should prefer, 
If I were any beast. 
Some ends, some means ; yea plants, yea stones detest, 
And love ; all, all some properties invest. 
If I an ordinary nothing were. 
As shadow, a light, and body must be here. 

But I am none ; nor will my sun renew. 
You lovers, for whose sake the lesser sun 

At this time to the Goat is run 

To fetch new lust, and give it you, 40 

Enjoy your summer all. 
Since she enjo3rs her long night's festival. 
Let me prepare towards her, and let me call 
This hour her vigil, and her eve, since this 
Both the year's and the day's deep midnight is. 



I FIX mine eye on thine, and there 

Pity my picture burning in thine eye ; 
My picture drown'd in a transparent tear, 

When I look lower I espy ; 
Hadst thou the wicked skill 
By pictures made and marr'd, to kill, 
How many ways mightst thou perform thy will ? 

But now I've drunk thy sweet salt tears, 
And though thou pour more, I'll depart ; 

My picture vanished, vanish all fears lo 

That I can be endamaged by that art ; 
Though thou retain of me 

One picture more, yet that will be. 

Being in thine own heart, from all malice free. 


Come live with me, and be my love. 
And we will some new pleasures prove 
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks, 
With silken lines and silver hooks. 

L 9, 1669, Although 

1. 10. So 1635 ; 1633. My picture vanished, vanish 
fears 1669, My picture vanish^ vanish fears 


There will the river whisp*ring ran 
Warm'd by thy eyes, more than the sun ; 
And there th' enamoor'd fish will stay, 
Begging themselves they may betray. 

When thon wilt swim in that live bath, 
Each fish, which every channel hath, lo 

Will amorously to thee swim, 
Gladder to catch thee, than thou him. 

If thou, to be so seen, be'st loth, 
By sun or moon, thou dark'nest both, 
And if mj^self have leave to see, 
I need not their light, having thee. 

Let others freeze with angling reeds. 

And cut their legs with shells and weeds, 

Or treacherously poor fish beset. 

With strangling snare, or windowy net 2Q 

I^t coarse bold hands from slimy nest 
The bedded fish in banks out-wrest ; 
Or curious traitors, sleeve-silk flies* 
Bewitch poor fishes' wand'ring eyes. 

1. 6. 1669, ihiiu L 7. Walton, enamelled 

1. 7. 1669, play 

1. II. Walton. Most amorously to thee will swim 

h 15. Walton, mine eyes 

I 18. So 1635, Walton ; 1633, which shells 

1. 20. 1669, winding 1. 20. Walton, snares 

L 23. Walton, Let 

1. 23. So 1635 ; 1633, sleeve sick 

1. 24. Walton, To witch poor wand ring fishes' eyes 


For thee, thou need'st no such deceit, 
For thou thyself art thine own bait : 
That fish, that is not catch'd thereby, 
Alas ! is wiser far than I. 


When by thy scorn, O murd'ress, I am dead. 

And that thou think'st thee free 

From all solicitation from me. 

Then shall my ghost come to thy bed, 

And thee, feign'd vestal, in worse arms shall see : 

Then thy sick taper will begin to wink, 

And he, whose thou art then, being tired before, 

Will, if thou stir, or pinch to wake him, think 

Thou call'st for more, 
Andy in false sleep, will from thee shrink : 10 

And then, poor aspen wretch, neglected thou 
Bathed in a cold quicksilver sweat wilt lie 

A verier ghost than I. 
What I will say, I will not tell thee now, 
Lest that preserve thee ; and since my love is spent, 
I'd rather thou shouldst painfully repent, 
Than by my threatenings rest still innocent. 

1. 28. Walton, Is wiser far, alas 
1. 2. 1669, thoushalt think L 7. 1669 omits then 
1. 10. 1635, in false sleep, from thee, 1669, in a false 
sleep, even from thee ' 

VOL. I. 4 



He is stark mad, whoever sajrs, 

That he hath been in love an hour, 
Yet not that love so soon decays, 

But that it can ten in less space devour ; 
Who will believe me, if I swear 
That I have had the plague a year ? 

Who would not laugh at me, if I should say 

I saw a flash of powder bum a day? 

Ah, what a trifle is a heart, 

If once into love's hands it oome ! lo 

All other griefe allow a part 

To other grie&, and ask themselves bat some ; 
They come to us, but us love draws ; 
He swallows us and never chaws ; 

By him, as by chained shot, whole ranks do die ; 

He is the tyrant pike, our hearts the fry. 

If 'twere not so, what did become 

Of my heart when I first saw thee ? 
I brought a heart into the room. 

But from the room I carried none with me. 20 
If it had gone to thee, I know 
Mine would have taught thine heart to show 

More pity imto me ; but Love, alas 1 

At one first blow did shiver it as glass. 

1. 8. So 1635 ; 163s, Jlask 
L 16. 1669, and we thefiy 



Yet nothing can to nothing fall, 

Nor any place be empty quite ; 
Therefore I thiuk my breast hath all 

Those pieces still, though they be not unite ; 
And now, as broken glasses show 
A hundred lesser faces, so 30 

My rags of heart can like, wish, and adore, 

But after one such love, can lov« no more. 


As virtuous men pass mildly away, 

And whisper to their souls to go. 
Whilst some of their sad friends do say, 

" Now his breath goes," and some say, " No.'* 

So let us melt, and make no noise, 
No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move ; 

Twere profanation of our joys 
To tell the laity our love. 

Moving of th' earth brings harms and fears ; 

Men reckon what it did, and meant ; 10 

But trepidation of the spheres, 

Though greater far, is innocent. 

1. 4. So 1669 ; 1633, The breath goes new 


Dull sablonary lovers' love 
— Whose soul IS sense— cannot admit 

Of absence, 'cause it doth remove 
The thing which demented it 

But we by a love so for refined, 
That ourselves know not what it iSi^ 

Inter-assurM of the mind. 
Care less eyes, lips and hands to miss. 20 

Our two souls therefore, which are one. 
Though I must go, endure not yet 

A breach, but an expansion. 
Like gold to airy thinness beat. 

If they be two, they are two so 

As stiff twin compasses are two'; 
Thy soul, the fix'd foot, makes no show 

To move, but doth, if th' other do, 

And though it in the centre sit. 

Yet, when the other for doth roam, 30 

It leans, and hearkens after it, 

And grows erect, as that comes honie. 

Such wilt thou be to me, who must, 
Like th' other foot, obliquely run ; 

Thy firmness makes my circle just. 
And makes me end where I begun. 

1. 15. So 1669 ; 1^33, Absence, hecause 
1. 16. So 1669 ; 1633, Those things 
1. 17. So 1669 ; 1633, so much 
1. 20. So 1669 ; 1633, eyeSf l^s, hands 



Where, like a pillow on a bed, 

A pregnant bank swell'd up, to rest 
The violet's redining head. 

Sat we two, one another's best. 

Our hands were firmly cemented 
By a fast balm, which thence did spring ; 

Our eye-beams twisted, and did thread 
Our eyes upon one doable string. 

So to engraft our hands, as yet 

Was all the means to make us one ; 10 

And pictores in our eyes to get 

Was all our propagation. 

AS| 'twixt two equal armies, Fate 

Suspends uncertain victory. 
Our souls— which to advance their state, 

Were gone out — ^hung 'twixt her and me. 

And whilst our souls negotiate there, 

We like sepulchral statues lay ; 
All day, the same our postures were, 

And we said nothing, all the day. 20 

L 3. Z669, declining 
L 4. 1669, on one anothet's breasts 
L 9. So 1635 ; 1633, to inttrgrafi 
L 15. Z635, oitrstaU 


If any, so by love refined, 

That he soul's language imdeistood» 
And by good love were grown all mind. 

Within convenient distance stood. 

He — though he knew not which soul spake. 
Because both meant, both spake the same--* 

Might thence a new ooacoction take. 
And part far purer than he came. 

This ecstacy doth nnperplez 

(We said) and tell hs what we love ; 30 

We see by this, it was not sex ; 

We see, we saw not, what did move t 

But as all several souls contain 
Mixture of things they know not what. 

Love these mix'd souls doth mix again, 
And makes both one, each this, and that« 

A single violet transplant. 

The strength, the colour, and the size — 
All which before was poor and scant— 

Redoubles still, and multiplies. 40 

When love with one another so 

Interanimates two souls. 
That abler soul, which thence doth flow, 

Defects of loneliness controls. 

L 25. So 1635 ; 1633 knows not L 29. i669» da 

I 44. i66g, kviliwss 


We then, who are this new soul, know. 
Of what we axe composed, and made, 

For th' atomies of which we grow 
Are souls, whom no change can invade. 

But, O alas I so long, so far, 

Our bodies why do we forbear ? 50 

They are ours, though not we ; we are 

Th' intelligences, they the spheres. 

We owe them thanks, because they thus 

Did us, to us, at first convey, 
Yielded their senses' force to us. 

Nor are dfoss to us, but allay. 

On man heaven's influence works not so, 

But that it first imprints the air ; 
For soul into the soul may flow. 

Though it to body first repair. 60 

As our blood labours to beget 

Spirits, as like souls as it can ; 
Because such fingers need to knit 

That subtle knot, which makes us man ; 

So must pure lovers' souls descend 

To affections, and to faculties, 
Which sense may reach and apprehend. 

Else a great prince in prison lies. 

L 48. 1650, sotd 

5^ DOSy^S POEJiS. 

To yea bodict tarn wt Uhb, that » 

\t«mk aca on love veveai'd wbk§ look ; 70 

\jiim% fliyvefm ia sools do sranr* 

But y«t tltt body k 1m book. 

Attil il *^m« lowt sich o we, 

tUve heard thii dialo^ne of one^ 
Let him *tUI mark osi he diaU see 

^maU change whcB we're to bodiei gone. 


1 LONG to talk wUh sonie old lover's shoit» 
Who died before the god of love was boriL. 

1 caimoC think that he» who then loved most. 
Stink to low as to love one which did acom. 

flut ntnce this god produced a destiny. 

And that vice-natnre, cnstooi, leu it bc^ 
1 must love her that loves not me. 

Sure, they which made htm god| meant not so much. 
Nor he in his yoong godhead practised it. 

But when an even flame two hearts did touch, 10 
His office was indulgently to fit 

Actives to passives. Correspondency 

Only his subject was ; it cannot be 
Love, till I love her, who loves me. 

1. 79. 1669, tki book L 76. 1635, groum 

\. 14. 1635, if I kve, who kvts not wu; 1669^ HU I 
lavt htr, thai loves mi 


But every modem god Mrill now extend 

His vaayt prerogative as far as Jove. 
To rage, to lust, to write to, to commend, 

All is the purlieu of the god of love. 
O ! were we waken'd by this t3rranny 
To ungod this child again, it could not be 20 

I should love her, who loves not me. 

Rebel and atheist too, why murmur I, 
As though I felt the worst that love could do ? 

Love may make me leave loving, or might^ry 
A deeper plague^ to make her love me too ; 

Which, since she loves before, I'm loth to see. 

Falsehood is worse than hate ; and that must be. 
If she whom I love, should love me. 

love's diet. 

To what a cumbersome unwieldiness 

And burdenous corpulence my love had grown, 

But that I did, to make it less, 

And keep it in proportion, 
Give it a diet, made it feed upon 
That which love worst endures, discretion. 

L 19. 1669, Were wt not weakened 


Above one sigh a day I allow'd him not. 

Of which my fortune, and my &ttlts had part ; 

And' if sometimes by stealth he got 

A she sigh from my mistress' heart, lo 

And thought to feast on that, I let him see 
Twas neither very soond^ nor meant to me; 

If he wmng from me a tear, I brined it so 
With scorn or shame, that him it nonrish'd not ; 

If he sttck'd hers, I let him know 

'Twas not a tear which he had got ; 
His drink was counterfeit, as was his meat ; 
For eyes, which roE towards all, weep not, but 

Whatever he would dictate I writ that, 

But burnt her letters when she writ to me ; 20 

And if that favour made him &t, 

I said, " If any title be 
Convey'd by this, ah I what doth it avail. 
To be the fortieth name in an entail ? " 

L 18. 1669, Her eyes 

1. 19. So 1633,1669; 1650, WheUiifnU^kimdiS' 
tasUt I still writ that 

1. 2a So 1635; 1633, my Utters; 1669, my letters 
which she writ 

1. 21. So 163s ; 1633, that that 

I 84. i66g, fortieth man 


Thus I reclaimed my biuxaxd lore, to flie 

At what, and when, and how, and where I choose. 

Now negligent of sports I lie^ 

And now, as other fidconers use, 
I spring a mistress, swear, write, sigh, and weep ; 
.And the game kill'd, or lost, go talk or sleep. 30 


Before I sigh my last gasp, let me breathe, 
Great Love, some legacies ; I here bequeath 
Mine eyes to Argus, if mine eyes can see ; 
If they be blind, then. Love, I give them thee ; 
My tongue to Fame ; to ambassadors mine ears ; 

To women or the sea, my tears : 
Thou, Love, hast taught me heretofore 
By making me serve her who had twenty more. 
That I should give to none, but such as had too 

much before. 

My constancy I to the planets give ; lo 

My truth to them who at the court do live ; 
Mine ingenuity and openness. 
To Jesuits ; to buffoons my pensiveness ; 
My silence to any, who abroad hath been ; 
My money to a Capuchin : 
Thou, Love, taught'st me, by appointiog me 
To love there, where no love received can be. 
Only to give to such as have an incapacity. 

1. 27. 1635, s^ori I 3a So 163s ; 1633, and sleep 

I 14. i66g, hav4 L x8, 1669, no good capacity 



My faith I give to Roman Catholics ; 
All my good works mito the Schismatics 20 

Of Amsterdam ; my best dTility 
And courtship to an University ; 
My modesty I give to soldiers bare ; 
My patience let gamesters share : 
Thou, Love, tanght'st me, by making me 
Love her that holds my love disparity. 
Only to give to those that count my gifts indignity. 

I give my reputation to those 

Which were my friends ; mine industry to foes ; 

To schoolmen I bequeath my doubtiulness ; 30 

My sickness to physicians, or excess ; 

To nature all that I in rhyme have writ ; 

And to my company my wit ; 
Thou, Love, by making me adore 
Her, who b^ot this love in me before, 
Taught'st me to make, as though I gave, when I do 

but restore. 

To him for whom the passing-bell next tolls, 
I give my physic books ; m^ written rolls 
Of moral counsels I to Bedlam give ; 
My brazen medals unto them which live 40 

In want of bread ; to them which pass amo^ 
All foreigners, mine English tongue : 
Thou, Love, by making me love one 
Who thinks her friendship a fit portion 
For younger lovers, dost my gifts thus disproportion. 

L 36b So 1635 ; 1633, did but 


Therefore 1*11 give no more, but I'll undo 
The world by dying, because love dies too. 
Then all your beauties will be no more worth 
Thap gold in mines, where none doth draw it forth ; 
And all your graces no more use shall have, 50 
Than a sun-dial in a grave : 

Thou, Love, taughfst me by making me 
Love her who doth neglect both me and thee. 
To invent, and practise this one way, to annihilate 



Whoever comes to shroud me, do not ham). 

Nor question much. 
That subtle wreath of hair, which crowns my arm ; 
The mystery, the sign you must not touch ; 

For 'tis my outward soul. 
Viceroy to that, which unto heaven being ^one, 

Will leave this to control 
And keep these limbs, her provinces, from dissolu* 

For if the sinewy thread my brain lets fall 

Through every part jo 

Can tie those parts, and make me one of all, 
Those hairs which upward grew, and strength and art 

L 54. 1669, to annihilate thee 
L 3. 1669, about mine arm 
l 13. 1650, grow 


Haye from a better brain. 
Can better do 't ; except she meant that I 

By this should know my pain. 
As prisoners then are manaded, when they're con- 
demned to die. 

\Vhate*er sh^ meant by it» bury it with me^ 

For since I am 
Love's martyr, it might breed idolatry, 
If into other hands these relics came. 20 

As 'twas humility 
To afford to it all that a soul can do, 

So *tis some bravery, 
That since you would have none of me, I bury some ^ 
of you. 




LiTTLS think'st tfaon, poor flower, 

Whom I've watdi'd six or seven days, 
And seen thy birth, and seen what every hour 
Gave to thy growth, thee to this height to raise. 
And now dost langfa and triumph on this bough. 

Little think'st thou. 
That it will freeze anon, and that I shall 
To-morrow find thee Mien, or not at all. 

Little think'st thou, poor heart, 

That laboorest yet to nestle thee, 10 

And think'st by hovering here to get a port 
In a forbidden or forbidding tree, 
And hopest her stiffness by long siege to bow, 

Little think'st thou, 
That thou to-morrow, ere that sun doth wake. 
Most with this sun and me a journey take. 

But thou which lovest to be 

Subtle to plague thjrself, wilt say, 
Alas ! if you must go, t^hat's that to me ? 
Here lies my business, and here I will stay ; 20 

You go to friends, whose love and means present 

Various content 
To your eyes, ears, and taste, and every part ; 
If then your body go, what need your heart ? 

L la So 1635 ; 1633, labours 
L 15. 1635, /^Jfr» 


Well then, stay here ; but know, 

When thou hast stay'd and done thy most, 

A naked thinkmg heart, that makes no show, 

Is to a woman bat a kind of ghost. 

How shall she know my heart ; or having none. 

Know thee for one ? 30 

Practice may make her know some other part ; 

But take my word, she doth not know a heart 

Meet me at London, then. 
Twenty days hence, and thou shalt see 
Me fresher, and more fat, by being with men, 
Than if I had stay'd still with her and thee. 
For God's sake, if you can, be you so too ; 

I will give you 
There to another friend, whom we shall find 
As glad to have my body as my mind. 40 


Upon this Primrose hill. 
Where, if heaven would distil 
A shower of rain, each several drop might go 
To his own primrose, and grow manna so ; 
And where their form, and their infinity 
Make a terrestrial galaxy. 
As the small stars do in the sky ; 
I walk to find a true love ; and I see 
That 'tis not a mere woman, that is she, 
^ut must or more or less than woman be. 10 


Yet know I not, which flower 

I wish ; a six, or four ; 
For should my true-love less than woman be, 
She were scarce anything ; and then, should she 
Be more than woman, she would get above 

All thought of sex, and think to move 

My heart to study her, and not to love. 
Both these were monsters ; since there must reside 
Falsehood in woman, I could more abide. 
She were by art, than nature falsified. 20 

Live, primrose, then, and thrive 

With thy true number five ; 
And, woman, whom this flower doth represent, 
With this mysterious number be content ; 
Ten is the farthest number ; if half ten 

Belongs unto each woman, then . 

Each woman may take half us men'; 
Or — if this will not serve their turn — since all 
Numbers are odd, or even, and they fall 
First into five, women may take us all. 30 

L 28. 1650, the turn 1. 29. 1635, since they fall 

L 30. So 163s ; 1633, this Jive 

VOL. I. 



When my grave is broke ap again 
Some second guest to entertain, 
— For graves have leam*d that woman-head, 
To be to more than one a bed— 
And he that digs it, spies 
A bracelet of bright hair about the bone. 

Will not he let us alone, 
And think that there a loving couple lies, 
Who thought that this device might be some way 
To make their souls at the last busy day lo 

Meet at this grave, and make a little stay ? 

If this fall in a time, or land. 
Where mass-devotion doth command, 
Then he that digs us up will bring 
Us to the bishop or the king, 
To make us relics ; then 
Thou shalt be a Mary Magdalen, and I 

A something else thereby ; 
All women shall adore us, and some men. 
And, since at such time miracles are sought, 20 

I would have that age by this paper taught 
What miracles we harmless lovers wrought. 

L 13. So 1669 ; 1633, mis-devotion 
L 15. So i659 ; 1633, and the, king 



First we loved well and faithfully, 
Yet knew not what we loved, nor why ; 
Difference of sex we never knew, 
No more than guardian angels do ; 
Coming and going we 
Perchance might kiss, but not between those 
Our hands ne'er touch'd the seals, 
Which nature, injured by late law, sets free. 30 
These miracles we did ; but now alas ! 
All measure, and all language, I should pass. 
Should I tell What a miracle she was. 


When I am dead, and doctors know not why, 

And my friends' curiosity 
Will have me cut up to survey each part, 
When they shall find your picture in my heart, 
You think a sudden damp of love 
Will thorough all their senses move. 
And work on them as me, and so prefer 
Your murder to the name of massacre, 

1. 25. So 1635 ; 1633, no more we knew 

L 26. So 1635 ; 1633, Than our 

1. 28. 1669, yet between 1. 3a 1669, set free 

1. 4. 1669, And 


Poor Yictories ; bat if you dare be braye, 

And pleasure in your conquest have, lo 
First kill th' enormous giant, your Disdain ; 
And let th' enchantress Honour, next be slain ; 

And like a Goth or Vandal rise, 

Deface records and histories 
Of your own arts and triumphs over men. 
And without such advantage kill me then. 

For I could muster up, as well as you. 

My giants, and my witches too, 
"Which are vast Constancy and Secretness } 
But these I neither look for nor profess ; 
Kill me as woman, let me die 
As a mere man ; do you but try 
Your passive valour, and you shall find then, 
Naked you have odds enough of any max^ 


L lo. 1669, the conquest 

L 24. So 1635 ; X633, In thai 



Shs's dead ; and all which die 
To their first elements resolve ; 
And we were mutual elements to us. 
And mode of one another. 
My body then doth hers involve, 
And those things whereof I consist hereby 
In me abundant grow, and burdenous. 
And nourish not, but smother. 
My fire of passion, sighs of air. 
Water of tears, and earthy sad despair, 10 

Which my materials be, 
But near worn out by love's security. 
She, to my loss, doth by her death repain 
And I might live long wretched so, 
But that my fire doth with my fuel grow. 
Now, as those active kings 
Whose foreign conquest treasure brings, 
Receive more, and spend more, and soonest break, 
This — which I am amazed that I can speak — 

This death, hath with my store 20 

My use increased. 
And so my soul, more earnestly released, 
Will outstrip hers \ as bullets flown before 
A later bullet may overtake, the powder being more. 

L 13. So 1635 ; 1633, ne'r 



Thou art not so black as my heart, 
Nor half so brittle as her heart, thou art ; 
What wouldst thou say ? shall both our properties by 
thee be spoke, 
— Nothing more excess, nothing sooner broke? 

Marriage rings are not of this stuff; 
Oh, why should ought less precious, or less tough. 
Figure our loires ? except in thy name thou have bid 

it say 
" — ^I'm cheap, and nought hot fiishion; fling me 

Yet stay with me since thou art come, 
Circle this finger's top, which didst her thumb ; lo 
Be justly proud, and gladly safe, that thou dost dwell 

with me ; 
She that, O I broke her faith, would soon break thc«. 




I NEVER stoop'd SO low, OS they 

Which on an eye, cheek, lip, can prey ; 
Seldom to them which soar no higher 
Than virtue, or the mind to admire. 

For sense and miderstanding may 
Know what gives fuel to their fire ; 

My love, though silly, is more brave ; 

For may I miss, whene'er I crave, 

If I know yet what I would have. 

If that be simply perfectest, 10 

Which can by no way be expressed 

But negatives, my love is so. 

To all, which all love, I say no. 
If any who deciphers best. 

What we know not— ourselves — can know, 
Let him teach me that nothing. This 
As yet my ease and comfort is, 
Though I speed not, I cannot miss. 

L II. 1669, no means 


THE fkohibitiob;» 

Takx heed of loriiig me ; 
At lemtf remember, I forfaade it thee ^ 
Nat that I ^lall repair my mithxifiy wiBte 
Of breath and blood, upon thy sgha and fpgrs 
By being to thee then what to me thoa wast i 
But so great joy our life at anoe ontiieaa^ 
Then, lest thy love by my death flnsjiale be. 
If thoa krre me, take heed of loving ne. 

Take h ffd of ^gtrwg me^ 
Or too mnch triumph in the victary ; lo 

Not that I shall be mine own ufluan. 
And hate with hate again retaCate ; 
But thou wilt lofe the style of conqoeror. 
If I, thy conquer perish by thy hate. 
Then, lest my being nothing lesiexi thee. 
If thoa hate me, take heed of hating 

Yet lore and hate me too ; 
So these extremes shall ne'er their office do ; 
Love me, that I may die the gentler way ; 
Hate me, because thy love's too great for me ; ao 

1. 3. 1669, repay in unthrifiy a wasU 

L 5. So 1635 ; 1633, to mi then that wkick tkom wast 


Or let these two, themselves, not me, decay ; 
So shall I live thy stage, not triumph he. 
Lest thou thy love and hate, and me undo, 
O let me live, yet love and hate me too. 


So, so^ break off this last lamenting kiss, 
which sucks two souls, and vapours both away ; 

Turn, thou ghost, that way, and let me turn this. 
And let ourselves benight our happiest day. 

We ask none leave to love ; nor will we owe 
Any so dieap a death as saying, " Go.*' 

Go ; and if that word have not quite killed thee, 
Ease me with death, by bidding me go too. 

Or, if it have, let my word work on me. 
And a just office on a murderer do. lo 

Except it be too late, to kill me so, 
Being double dead, going, and bidding, ''Ga" 

L 22. So 163s ; 1633, thy stay 

1. 23. 1635, Then Ust thou thy Icvt hate and nu thou 
undo; 1669, Lest thou thy love, and hate, and me thou undo 
I. 24. So 163s ; 1633, 0/ love and hate 
1. z. 1669, So go 




For my first twenty yeais, since yesterday^ 

I scarce beliered thoa coaldst be gone away ; 
For forty more I fed on faTOurs past, 

And forty on hopes, that thoa wonldst they might 
Tears drown'd one htmdred, and sighs blew out two ; 

A thousand, I did neither think, nor do. 
Or not divide, all being one thought of jKm. ; 

Or in a thousand more, forgot that toa 
Yet call not this long life ; but think that I 
Am, by being dead, immortal ; can ghosts die ? xo 


No lover saith, I love, nor any other 

Can judge a perfect lover ; 
He thinks that else none can <x will agree. 

That any loves but he ; 
I cannot say I loved, for who can say 

He was kill*d yesterday. 
Lore with excess of heat, more young than old. 

Death kills with too much cold ; 

L I. 1669, From 

L 3. 1669, And 

L 7. So 1633, 1669 ; 1635, Or not deemed 

L 8. i66gt forget 


We die bnt once, and who loved last did die, 

He that saith, twice, doth lie ; iq 

For though he seem to move, and stir a while, 

It doth the sense begnile. 
Such life is like the light which bideth yet 

When the life's light is set. 
Or like the heat which fire in solid matter 

Leaves behind, two hours after. 
Once I loved and died ; and am now become 

Mine epitaph and tomb ; 
Here dead men speak their last, and so do I ; 

Love-slain, lo 1 here I die. 2Q 


Soul's joy, now I am gone, 
And you alone, 
— Which cannot be. 
Since I must leave myself with thee. 
And carry thee with me— 
Yet when unto our eyes 
Absence denies 
Each other's sight. 
And makes to us a constant night, 

When others change to light ; 10 

O give no way to gritf^ 
But let belief 

Of mutual love 
This wonder to the vulgar prove ^ 
Our bodies^ not we move* 

I I, Lansd. MS. 777, when 

76 DONN£:s POEMS. 

Let not thy wit beweq> 

Words but sense deep ; 
For when we miss 
l)y distance our hope's joining bliss, 

Even then our souls shall kiss ; 20 

Fools have no means to meet, 
But by their feet ; 
Why should our clay 
Over our spirits so much sway, 
To tie us to that way ? 

give no way to griefs ^c. 


Whilst yet to prove 
I thought there was some deity in love, 

So did I reverence, and gave 
Worship ; as atheists at their dying hour 
Call, what they cannot name, an unknown power, 

As ignorantly did I crave. 
Thus when 
Things not yet known are coveted by men, 

Our desires give them fashion, and so 
As they wax lesser, fall, as they size, grow. 10 

1. 17. Lansd. MS., 777, Wounds 

1. z8. Lansd. MS., 777, whiU 

1. 19. Lansd. MS., 777, our lives 

1. a6. Lansd. MS., 777 omits the second refrain 


But, from late fair, 
His highness sitting in a golden chair 

Is not less cared for after three days 
By children, than the thing which lovers so 
Blindly admire, and with such worship woo ; 

Being had, enjoying it decays ; 
And thence. 
What before pleased them all, takes but one sense. 

And that so lamely, as it leaves behind 
A kind of sorrowing dullness to the mind* ^o 

Ah, cannot we. 
As well as cocks and lions, jocmid be 

After such pleasures, unless wise 
Nature decreed — since each such act, they say, 
Diminisheth the length of life a day — 

This ; as she would man should despise 
The sport. 
Because that other curse of being short, 

And only for a minute made to be 
Eager, desires to raise posterity. 30 

Since so, my mind 
Shall not desire what no ipan else can find ; 

I'll no more dote and run 
To pursue things which had endamaged me ; 
And when I come where moving beauties be, 

As men do when the summer's sun 
Grows great, 
Though I admire theur greatness, shun their heat. 

Each place can afford shadows ; if all fail, 
'Tis but applying worm-seed to the tail. 40 



Stand still, and I will read to thee 
A lecture, Lore, in Love's philosophy. 

These three hours that we have spent, 

Walking here, two shadows went 
Along with us, which we ourselves produced. 
But, now the sun is just above our head, 

We do those shadows tread. 

And to brave clearness all things are reduced. 
So whilst our inhnt loves did grow, 
Di^uises did, and shadows, flow, lo 

From us and our cares ; but now 'tis not so. 

That love has not attained the highest degree, 
Which is still diligent lest others see. 

Except our loves at this noon stay, 

We shall new shadows make the other way. 

As the first were made to blind 

Others, these which come behind 
Will work upon ourselves, and blind our eyes. 
If our loves faint, and westwardly decline, 

To me thou, falsely, thine 20 

And I to thee mine actions shall disguise. 
The morning shadows wear away, 
But these grow longer all the day ; 
But O ! love's day is short, if love decay. 

Love is a growings or lull constant light. 
And his short minute, after noon, is night 

1. 9. 1669, Iffve 





If her disdain least change in you can move, 

You do not love. 
For when that hope gives fuel to the fire, 
Yon sell desire. 
Love is not love, but given free ; 
And so is mine ; so should yours be. 


Her heart, that weeps to hear of others* moan, 

To mine is stone. 
Her eyes, that weep a stranger's eyes to see, 

Joy to wound me. 10 

Yet I so well affect each part, 
As — caused by them — I love my smart 


Say her disdainings justly must be graced 

With name of chaste ; 
And that she frowns lest longing should exceed, 
And raging breed ; 
So her disdains can ne'er offend, 
Unless self-love take private end. 

1. 3. So Z669 ; Z635, the hope 


"Tislore breeds love in me» and cold disdain 

EjUs that again, 20 

As water canseth fire to fipet and fiune. 
Till all consume. 
Who can of love more rich gift make, 
Than to Lore's self for love's own sake ? 

I'll never dig in quarry of an heart 

To have n» part, 
Nor roast in fieiy eyes, which always are 
Who this way would a lover prove. 
May show his patience, not his love. 30 

A frown may be sometimes for physic good. 

But not for food ; 
And for that raging humour there is sure 
A gentler cure. 
Why bar you love of private end, 
Which never should to public tend ? 


Send me some tokens, that my hope may live 
Or that my easeless thoughts may sleep and rest ; 

Send me some honey, to make sweet my hive, 
That in my passions I may hope the best 

L 24. So 1669 ; 163s, Than to Icve self for love's sake 
1650, Than to love self-love for l^e's sake 
1. 27. So 1669 ; 1635, rest 


I beg nor ribbon wrought with thine own hands, 

To knit our loves in the £Eintastic strain 
Of new-touch'd youth ; nor ring to show^the stands 

Of our affection^ that, as that's round and plain, 
So should our loves meet in simplicity ; 

No, nor the corals, which thy wrist enfold, lo 

Laced up together in congruity, 

To show our thoughts should rest in the same hold ; 
No, nor thy picture^ though most gracious. 

And most desired, 'cause 'tis like the best 
Nor witty lines, which are most copious, 

Within the writings which thou hast address'd. 
Send me nor this nor that, to increase my score. 
But swear thou think'st I love thee, and no more. 


He that cannot choose but love, 

And strives against it still, 

Never shall my fancy move, 

For he loves against his will ; 

Nor he which is all his own. 

And cannot pleasure choose ; 

When I am caught he can be gone, 

And when he list refuse ; 

Nor he that loves none but fair, 

For such by all are sought ; lo 

1. 14. So 1669 ; 1650, like thu best 
VOL. I. 6 


Nor ht tint cm for isiil ones care, 
For his jvdgnent then b nought ; 
Nor he that hith wit, for he 
Win make me his jest or slaTc ; 

Nor a fool when othen 

He can neither 

Nor he that still his mistress prays» 

For she b thnOl'd therefore ; 

Nor be tint pajs, not, for he says 

Within, she's worth no more. 20 

Is there then no kind of men 

Whom I may freely prove ? 

I will Tent that homoiir then 

In mine own s^-k>?e. 






Hail Bishop Valenttne, whose day this is ; 

All the air is thy diocese, 

And all the chirping choristers 
And other birds are thy parishioners ; 

Thou marriest every year 
The lyric lark, and the grave whispering dove, 
The yarrow that neglects his life for love, 
The household bird with the red stomacher ; 

Thou makest the blackbird speed as soon, 
As doth the goldfinch, or the halcyon ; lo 

The husband cock looks out, and straight is sped, 
And meets his wife, which brings her feather-bed. 
This day more cheerfully than ever shine ; 
This day, which might inflame thyself, old Valentine. 


Till now, thon warm'd'st with multiplying loves 

Two larks, two sparrows, or two doves ; 

All that is nothing unto this ; 
For thou this day couplest two phoenixes 9 

Thou makst a taper see 
What the sun never saw, and what the ark 20 

— Which was of fowls and beasts the cage and park — 
Did not contain, one bed contains, through thee ; 

Two phoenixes^ whose joined breasts 
Are unto one another mutual nests, 
Where motion kindles such fires as shall give 
Young phoenixes, and yet the old shall live ; 
Whose love and courage never shall decline. 
But make the whole year through, thy day, O 



Up then, fair phoenix bride, frustrate the sun ; 

Thyself from thine aifection 30 

Takest warmth enough, and from thine eye 
All lesser birds will take their jollity. 

Up, up, fair bride, and call 
Thy stars from out their several boxes, take 
Thy rubies, pearls, and diamonds forth, and make 
Thyself a constellation of them all \ 

And by their blazing signify 
That a great princess frdls, but doth not die. 
Be thou a new star, that to us portends 
Ends of much wonder ; and be thou those ends. 40 


Since thou dost this day in new glory shine, 

May all men date records from this day, Valentine. 

Come forth, come forth, and as one glorious flame 

Meeting another grows the same, 

So meet thy Frederick, and so 
To an inseparable union go, 

Since separation 
Falls not on such things as are infinite. 
Nor things, which are but one, can disunite. 
You're twice inseparable, great, and one ; 50 

Go then to where the bishop stays, 
To make you one, his way, which divers ways 
Must be effected ; and when all is past. 
And that you're one, by hearts and hands made fast, 
You two have one way left, yourselves to entwine, 
Besides this bishop's knot, of Bishop Valentine. 


But O, what ails the sun, that here he stays. 

Longer to-day than other days? 

Stays he new light from these to get? 
And finding here such stars, is loth to set ? 60 

And why do you two walk. 
So slowly paced in this procession ? 
Is all your care but to be look'd upon. 
And be to others spectacle and talk? 

L 43. So 1669 ; 1633, ^<ww this thy 

L 56. So 1669 ; 1633, O Bishop Valentine 

J. 6a So Z635 ; 2633, such store 


The feast with gluttonoos delays 
Is eaten, and too long their meat they praise ; 
The masquers come late, and I think, will stay. 
Like fairies, till the cock crow them away. 
Alas ! did not antiquity assign 
A night as well as day, to thee, old Valentine ? 70 


They <^d, and night is come ; and yet we see 

Formalities retarding thee. 

What mean these ladies, which — as though 
They were to take a clock in pieces — go 

So nicely about the bride ? 
A bride^ before a *' Good-night " could be said. 
Should vanish from her clothes into her bed. 
As souls from bodies steal, and axe not spied. 

But now she's laid ; what though she be ? 
Yet there are more delays, for where is he ? 80 

He comes and passeth through sphere after sphere ; 
First her sheets, then her arms, then anywhere. 
Let not this day, then, but this night be thine ; 
Thy day was but the eve to this, O Valentine. 


Here lies a she sun, and a he moon there ; 

She gives the best light to his sphere ; 

Or each is both, and all, and so 
They unto one another nothing owe ; 

1. 70. So 1669 ; 1633, O Valentine 
L 81. So 1650 ; 1633, passes 
L 85. So 1650 ; 1633, heri 



And yet they do, bat are 
So just and rich ih that coin which they pay, 90 

That neither would, nor needs forbear, nor stay ; 
Neither desires to be spared nor to spare. 

They quickly pay their debt, and then 
Take no acquittances, but pay again ; 
They pay, they give, they lend, and so let fall 
No such occasion to be liberal. 
More truth, more courage in these two do shine, 
Than all thy turtles have and sparrows, Valentine. 


And by this act of these two phoenixes 

Nature again restored is ; 100 

For since these two are two no more. 
There's but one phoenix still, as was before* 

Rest now at last, and we — 
As satyrs watch the sun's uprise — ^will stay 
Waiting when your eyes opened let out day. 
Only desired because your face we see. 

Others near yon shall whispering speak, 
And wagers lay, at which side day will break, 
And win by observing, then, whose hand it is 
That opens first a curtain, hers or his : no 

This will be tried to-morrow after nine. 
Till which hour, we thy day enlarge, O Valentine. 

1. 94. So 1635 ; 1633 acquittance 
1. 96. 1669 omits such 



I613, DECEMBER 26. 



Unseasonable man, statue of ic'e^ 

What could to countiys solitude entice 

TheC) in this year's cold and decrepit time ? 

Nature's instinct draws to the warmer clime 

Even smaller birds, who by that courage dare 

In numerous fleets sail through their sea, the air. 

What delicacy can in fields appear, 

Whilst Flora herself doth a frieze jerkin wear ? 

Whilst winds do all the trees and hedges strip 

Of leaves, to furnish rods enough to whip 10 

Thy madness from thee, and all springs by frost 

Have taken cold, and their sweet murmurs lost? 

If thou thy feults or fortunes wouldst lament 

>yith just solemnity, do it in Lent 

* So 1635 ; 1633, absence thence 
1. 5. So 1635 ; 1633, Even sni^U 
1. 12. 1635, Having 



At court the spring already advanced is, 

The sun stays longer up ; and yet not his 

The glory is ; &r other, other fires. 

First, zeal to prince and state, then love's desires 

Bum in one breast, and like heaven's two great 

The first doth govern days, the other, nights. 20 

And then that early light which did appear 
Before the sun and moon created were, 
The prince's ftivonr, is difiused o'er all. 
From which all fortunes, names, and natures fall. 
Then from those wombs of stars, the bride's bright 

At every glance, a constellation flies. 
And sows the court with stars, and doth prevent 
In light and power, the all-eyed firmament. 
First her eyes kindle other ladies' eyes. 
Then from their beams their jewels' lustres rise, 30 
And from their jewels torches do take fire, 
And all is warmth, and light, and good desire. 
Most other courts, alas 1 are like to hell, 
Where in dark places, fire without light doth 

dwell ; 
Or but like stoves ; for lust and envy get 
Continual, but artificial heat 
Here zeal and love grown one all clouds digest. 
And make our court an everlasting east. 
And canst thou be from thence ? 

L 39. So 1635 ; 1633, kindUs 
L 3? 1635, dark plots 



IDIOS. No, I am there ; 

As heaven — to men disposed— is everywhere^ 40 
So are those courts, whose princes animate 
Not only all their house but all their state. 
Let no man think, because he's full, he hath alL 
Kings — as their pattern, God — ^are liberal 
Not only in fullness, but capacity, 
Enlarging narrow men to feel and see. 
And comprehend the blessings they bestow. 
So, reclused hermits oftentimes do know 
More of heaven's glory than a worldling can. 
As man is of the world, the heart of man 50 

Is an epitome of God's great book 
Of creatures, and man need no farther look ; 
So is the country of courts, where sweet peace doth, 
As their own common soul, give life to both ; 
And am I then from court? 

ALbOPHANES. Dreamer, thou art t 

Think'st thou, fimtastic, that thou hast a part 
In the Indian fleet, because thou hast 
A little spice or amber in thy taste ? 
Because thou art not frozen, art thou warm ? 
Seest thou all good, because thou seest no harm ? 60 
The earth doth in her inner bowels hold 
Stuff well-disposed, and which would fain be gold; 
But never shall, except it chance to lie 
So upward, that heaven gild it with his eye. 
As, for divine things, faith comes fh>m above, 
So, for best civil use, all tinctures move 

I 55. So 163s ; J633, / am not then from court 


From higher powers ; from God religion springs. 
Wisdom and honour from the use of kings : 
Then ufibeguile thyself^ and know with me. 
That angels, though on earth employed they be, 70 
Are still in heaven, so he is still at home 
That doth abroad to honest actions come. 
Chide thyself then, O fool, which yesterday 
Mightst have read more than all thy booka 

bewray J 
Hast thou a history, which doth present 
A court, where all affections do assent 
Unto the king's, and that that king's are just ; 
And where it is no levity to trust ; 
Where there is no ambition, but to obey ; 
Where men need whisper nothing, and yet may ; 80 
Where the king's favours ^e so placed, that all 
Find that the king therein is liberal 
To them, in him, because his favours bend 
To virtue, to the which they all pretend ? 
Thou hast no such ; yet here was this, and more. 
An earnest lover, wise then, and before, 
Our little Cupid hath sued livery,^ 
And is no more in his minority ; 
He is admitted now into that breast 
Where the king's counsels and his secrets rest. 9q 
What hast thou lost, Q ignorant man ? 

IDIOS. I knew 

All this, and only therefore I withdrew. 
To know and feel all this, and not to have 
Words to express it, makes a man a grave 


Of his own thoughts ; I would not therefore stay 

At a great feast, having no grace to say. 

And yet I 'scaped not here ; for being come, 

Full of the common joy, I atter'd some. 

Read then this nuptial song, which .was not made 

Either the court or men's hearts to invade ; loo 

But since I'm dead and buried, I could frame 

No epitaph, which might advance my fame 

So much as this poor song, which testifies 

I did unto that day some sacrifice. ^ 



Thou art reprieved, old year, thou shalt not die ; 

Though thou upon thy death-bed lie, 

And should'st within five days expire, 
Yet thou art rescued by a mightier fire, 

Than thy old soul, the sun. 
When he doth in his largest circle run. i lo 

The passage of the west or east would thaw. 
And open wide their easy liquid jaw 
To all our ships, could a Promethean art 
Either unto the northern pole impart 
The fire of these inflaming eyes, or of this loving 


2. 108. i6^Jrom 




But andiscerning Muse, which heart, which eyes, 

In this new couple, dost thou prize, 

When his eye as inflaming is 
As hers, and her heart loves as well as his ? 

Be tried by beauty, and then 120 

The bridegroom is a maid, and not a man ; 
If by that manly courage they be tried, 
Which scorns unjust opinion ; then the bride 
Becomes a man. Should chance or envy's art 
Divide these two, whom nature scarce did part, 
Since both have the inflaming eye, and both the 

loving heart? 



Though it be some divorce to think of you 

Single, so much one are you two. 

Let me here contemplate thee, 
First, cheerful bridegroom, and first let me see, 130 

How thou prevent'st the sun. 
And his red foaming horses dost outrun ; 
How, having laid down in thy Sovereign's breast 
All businesses, from thence to reinvest 
Them when these triumphs cease, thou forward art 
To show to her, who doth the like impart. 
The fire of thy inflaming eyes, and of thy loving heart. 



Bat now to thee, fair bride, it is some wrong. 
To think thon wert in bed so long. 
Since soon thou liest down first, 'tis fit 140 
Thou in first rising shooldst allow for it 

Powder thy radiant hair. 
Which if withont snch ashes thon wonldst wear, 
Thou which, to all which come to look upon, 
Wert meant for Phoebus, wouldst be Phaeton. 
For our ease, give thine eyes th* unusual part 
Of joy, a tear; so quench'd, thou mayst impart, 
To us that come^ thy inflaming eyes ; to him, thy 
loving heart. 



Thus thou descend'st to our infirmity. 

Who can the sun in water see. 150 

So dost thou, when in silk and gold 

Thou cloud'st thyself; since we which do behold 
Are dust and worms, 'tis just. 

Our objects be the fruits of worms and dust 

Let every jewel be a glorious star, 

Yet stars are not so pure as their spheres are ; 

And though thou stoop, to appear to us, in part. 

Still in that picture thou entirely art, 

Which thy inflaming eyes have made within his 
loving heart. 

L 150. Addl MS. 18,647, in vnnter 



Now from joiv euts yon imue forth, and w«, i6o 
A* men, wbich through « cypresa lee 
The lising ion, do think it two ; 
So, as 70U go to church, do think of ;ou j 

But that veil being gone. 
By the church rites yon are from thenceforth one. 
lite church triumphant made ibis match before, 
And now the militant doth strive no more. 
Then, reverend priest, who God's Recorder art. 
Bo, from hit dictates, to these two impart 
All blessings which are seen, or thought, by angel's 
eye or heart 170 


Blest pair of swans, O may yon intetbring 

Baily new joys, and nerer sing ; 

live, till all grounds of wishes f^l, 
Till honour, yea, till wisdom grow so stale. 

That new great heights to try. 
It must serve your ambition, to die ; 
Raise heirs, and may here, to the worid's end, live 
Heirs from this king, to take thanks, you, to give. 
Nature and grace do all, and nothing art ; 
May never age or error overlhwart 180 

With any west these radiant eyes, with any north 
this heart. 

95 J)0NN£:S POEMS. 


But you are OTer-biest Plenty this day 

Injures ; it causeth time to stay ; 

The tables groan, as though this feast 
Would, as the flood, destroy all fowl and beast. 

And were the doctrine new 
That the earth moved, this day would make it true ; 
For every part to dance and revel goes. 
They tread the air, and fidl not where they rose. 
Though six hours since the sun to bed did part, 190 
The masks and banquets will not yet impart 
A sunset to these weary eyes, a centre to this heart, 

THE bride's going TO BED. 

What mean*st thou, bride, this company to keep? 

To sit up, till thoQ fain wouldst sleep ? 

Thou mayst not, when thou'rt laid, do so ; 
Thyself must to him a new banquet grow ; 

And you must entertain 
And do all this day's dances o'er again. 
Know that if sun and moon together do 
Rise in one point, they do not set so toa 200 

Therefore thou mayst, fair bride, to bed depart ; 
Thou art not gone, being gone ; where'er thou art, 
Thou leavest in him thy watchful eyes, in him thy 
loving heart. 



THE bridegroom's COMING. 

As he that sees a star fall, runs apace, 
And finds a jelly in the place, 
So doth the bridegroom haste as much. 
Being told this star is fallen, and finds her such. 

And as friends may look strange, 
By a new fashion, or apparel's change, 209 

Their souls, though long acquainted they had been. 
These clothes, their bodies, never yet had seen. 
Therefore at first she modestly might start. 
But must forthwith surrender every part, 
As freely as each to each before gave either eye or 



Now, as in Tullia's tomb, one lamp burnt clear, 
Unchanged for fifteen hundred year. 
May these love-lamps we here enshrine, 

In warmth, light, lasting, equal the divine. 
Fire ever doth aspire, 

And makes all like itself, turns all to fire, 220 

But ends in ashes ; which these cannot do, 

For none of these is fuel, but fire too. 

This is joy's bonfire, then, where love's strong arts 

Make of so noble individual parts 

One fire of four inflaming eyes, and of two loving hearts. 

IDIOS. As I have brought this song, that I may do 

A perfect sacrifice, I'll bum it too. 
VOL. I. 7 


AIXOPHANES. No^ sir. This paper I have justly 
For, in bomt incense, the perfume is not 
His only that presents it, bat of all ; 230 

Whatever celebrates this festival 
Is common, since the joy thereof is sa 
Nor may yourself be priest ; but let me go 
Back to the couxt, and I will lay it upon 
Such altais, as prize your devotion. 



The sunbeams in the east are spread ; 
Leave, leave, hSx bride, your solitary bed ; 

No more shall you return to it alone ; 
It nurseth sadness, and your body's print. 
Like to a grave, the yielding down doth dint ; 

You, and your other you, meet there anon. 

Put forth, put forth, that warm balm-breathing 
thigh, V 
Which when next time you in these sheets will smother. 

There it must meet another, 9 

Which never was, but must be, oft, more nigh. 
Come glad from thence, go gladder than you came ; 
To-day put on perfection, and a woman's name. 

Daughters of London, you which be 
Our golden mines, and fiimish'd treasury ; 
You which are angels, yet still bring with you 


Thousand^ of angels on your marriage days ; 
Help with your presence, and devise to praise 

These rites, which also unto you grow due ; 

Conceitedly dress her, and be assign'd 
By you 6t place for every flower and jewel ; 20 

Make her for love fit fuel, 
As gay as Flora and as rich as Ind ; 
So may she, &ir and rich, in nothing lame. 
To-day put on perfection, and a woman's name. 

And you frolic patricians. 

Sons of those senators, wealth's deep oceans ; 

Ye painted courtiers, barrels of other's wits ; 
Ye countrymen, who but your beasts love none ; 
Ye of those fellowships, whereof he's one, 

Of study and play made strange hermaphrodites, 30 

Here shine ; this bridegroom to the temple bring. 
Lo, in yon path which store of strew'd flowers graceth. 

The sober virgin paceth ; 
Except my sight fail, 'tis no other thing. 
Weep not, nor blush, here is no grief nor shame, 
To-day put on perfection, and a wofban's name. 

Thy two-leaved gates, fair temple, unfold. 
And these two in thy sacred bosom hold, 

Till mystically join'd but one they be ; 
Then may thy lean and hunger-starvM womb 40 
Long time expect their bodies, and their tomb. 

Long after their own parents fatten thee. 

L 26. So 2635 ; 1633, thes€ 

663720 A 


tor I>OJi*X£'S POEMS. 

K\\ cl4«r daini^ wA all cold barrenness. 
All vkiMii^ lA new k>fieS| be fiur for ever, 

XA'hioh mi^bl tbese two disserer ; 

ATwuys afi tli^Mher mikj cscfa one possess ; 
T<t( n>^ bcM bndo, best worthy of praise and fame, 
T^-«}K9' pat» ^« peHectioa, and a woman's name. 

>!^*iDfAr di^yt briiC v^*^ deUght» 

X«v ic^ T^hfwmkv^ bnt lor they aoon bring night ; 50 

<»icr ««^N*«it wah thee than these diverse meats, 
<'^:>>n vli>q-vMt« than dancing jollities, 
^^lhM )ov<^«-icrks than glancing with the eyes, 

1^1 ihat iW can still in cor half sphere sweats ; 
lU AiM i«i wint«r« but ht now stands still. 
\ <^ «^ha4^w« (am ; noon point he hath attained ; 

UtiL >i^NHibt mill be restrain'dt 
)^i galk)|> lit«(y down the western hilL 
TH«>4) sHalu w-lvm W* hath ran the heaten's half frame, 
T.^nii^hi }Nai on )>erfcction, aid a woman's name. 60 

11) r* AAuM\>tt» tr^ning star b rose^ 

\V h> (h<^) «KottKi not our amorous star inclose 

I lcr»eU in h<Hr wi«h\i bed ? Release your strings, 
MuiioiAus ; and danceis take some truce 
Wuh thcj« >\>ar (^leasing labours, for great use 

As much weariness as perfection brings. 

Vou, and not only you, but all toil'd beasts 
Rest duly ; at night all their toils are dispensed ; 

But in their beds commenced 
Are other labours, and more dainty feasts. 70 

I 59. So 1635 ; 1635, €9m$ tki v>orld*s ka^ frame 


She goes a maid, who, lest she turn the same, 
To-night puts on perfection, and a woman's name. 

Thy virgin's girdle now untie, 

And in thy nuptial bed, love's altar, lie 

A pleasing sacrifice ; now dispossess 
Thee of these chains and robes, which were put on 
To adorn the day, not thee ; for thou, alone, 

Like virtue and truth, art best in nakedness. 

This bed is only to virginity 
A grave, but to a better state, a cradle. So 

Till now thou wast but able 
To be, what now thou art ; then, that by thee 
Ko more be said, •* I may be," but ** I am," 
To-night put on perfection, and a woman's name. 

Even like a faithful man content, 

That this life for a better should be spent, 

So she a mother's rich stile doth prefer, 
And at the bridegroom's wish'd approach doth lie, 
Like an appointed lamb, when tenderly 

The priest comes on his knees, to embowel her. 90 

Now sleep or watch with more joy ; and, O light 
Of heaven, to-morrow rise thou hot, and early ; 

This sun will love so dearly 
Her rest, that long, long we shall want her sight. 
Wonders are wrought, for she, which had no maim, 
To-night puts on perfection, and a woman's name. 

L 9$. 1635, no name 




Fond woman, which wouldst have thy husband die» 

And 3ret complain'st of his great jealousy ; 

If, swollen with poison, he lay in his last bed. 

His body with a sere bark covered. 

Drawing his breath as thick and short as can 

The nimblest.crocheting musician. 

Ready with loathsome vomiting to spew 

His soul out of one hell into a new. 

Made deaf with his poor kindred's howling cries. 

Begging with few feign*d tears great legacies,-^ lo 

Thou wouldst not weep, but jolly, and frolic be. 

As a slave, which to-morrow should be free. 

Yet weep'st thou, when thou seest him hungerly 

Swallow his own death, heart's-bane jealousy ? 

O give him many thanks, he's courteous, 

That in suspecting kindly wameth us. 

We must not, as we used, flout openly, 

In scoffing riddles, his deformity ; 

L 4. 1669, sen-clotht AddL MS. 25,707, sore bark 


Nor at his board together being sat, 

With words, nor touch, scarce looks, adulterate. 20 

Nor when he, swollen and pamper'd with great 

Sits down and snorts, caged in his basket chair. 
Must we usurp his own bed any more, 
Nor kiss and play in his house, as before. 
Now I see many dangers ; for it is 
His realm, his castle, and his diocese. 
But if — as envious men, which would revile 
Their prince, or coin his gold, themselves exile 
Into another country, and do it there — 
We play in another house, what should we fear ? 30 
There we will scorn his household policies, 
His silly plots, and pensionary spies. 
As the inhabitants of Thames' right side 
Do London's mayor, or Germans the Pope's pride. 



Marrt, and love thy Flavia, for she 
Hath all things, whereby others beauteous be ; 
For, though her eyes be small, her mouth is great ; 
Though they be ivory, yet her teeth be jet ; 

L 31. 1669, high fart 

L 35. 1669, New do I set my danger 

L 3a 1669, attothtr'St AddL MS. 25,707, other 

L 4. 1669, theirs bt ivory 


Though they be dim, yet she is light enough ; 

And though her harsh hair fall, her skin is tough ; 

What though her cheeks be yellow, her hair's red, 

Give her thine, and she hath a maidenhead. 

These things are beauty's elements ; where these 

Meet in one, that one must, as perfect, please. lo 

If red and white, and each good quality 

Be in thy wench, ne'er ask where it doth lie. 

In bu3ring things perfumed, we ask, if there 

Be musk and amber in it, but not where. 

Though all her parts be not in th' usual place. 

She hath yet an anagram of a good face. 

If we might put the Vetters but one way, 

In that lean dearth of words, what could we say ? 

When by the gamut some musicians make 

A perfect song, others will undertake, 20 

By the same gamut changed, to equal it. 

Things simply good can never be unfit ; 

She's fair as any, if all be like her ; 

And if none be, then she is singular. 

All love is wonder ; if we justly do 

Account her wonderful, why not lovely too ? 

Love built on beauty, soon as beauty, dies ; 

Choose this face, changed by no deformities. 

Women are all like angels ; the fair be 

Like those which fell to worse ; but such as she, 30 

Like to good angels, nothing can impair : 

'Tis less grief to be foul, than to have been fair. 

L 6. 1669, hair's foul L 6. So 1635 ; 1633, 1669, rough 
L z6. 1669, (ht atKigrams 


For one night's revels, silk and gold we choose, 
But, in long journeys, cloth, and leather use. 
Beauty is barren oft ; best husbands say 
There is best land, where there is foulest way. 
Oh, what a sovereign plaster will she be. 
If thy past sins have taught thee jealousy I 
Here needs no spies, nor eunuchs ; her commit 
Safe to thy foes, yea, to a marmoset. 40 

like Belgians cities the round country drowns, 
That dirty foulness guards and arms the towns, 
So doth her face guard her ; and so, for thee, 
Which forced by business, absent oft must be. 
She, whose face, like clouds, turns the day to night ; 
Who, mightier than the sea, makes Moors seem white ; 
Who, though seven years she in the stews had laid, 
A nunnery durst receive, and think a maid ; 
And though in childbed's labour she did lie, 
Midwives would swear, 'twere but a tympany ; 50 
Whom, if she accuse herself, I credit less 
Than witches, which impossibles confess ; 
One like none, and liked of none, fittest were ; 
For things in fashion every man will wear. 

1. 41-3. 163J— 

When BelgicCs cities the round countries drown 
That dirty foulness guards and arms the down 


Like Belgia*s cities when the country is drowned. 
That dirty foulness guards and arms the towns, 

I. 45. St. MS., lihe the clouds^ turns day to night, 
1. 46. Farmer-Cbetham MS. thi sun, 
I 49. Z669, childbirth! s 



A tikr hamd and baA^ and good works too, 
Hsve xsTd thj Icve vbkh ■ntb ja g should undo^ 
YcB» ti^o^ tkia hR hmdt^ dttt ^postasj 
Cdafiem tikf kfc; ]ret BBid^ HBch I fear thee. 
Woscs sre Ske tihe aiti^ ioned vnto nooe^ 
OpcA to aU sencber^ mf t u e d , if mknown. 
If I b»« ooc^ a fand. aad left km llf, 
Aaodher favlcr «siog these Beans^ as It 
Maj catch tbe SUM bud ; aad. as these things be, 
Woaaea are Bade fcr bmb, boI haa nor me. lo 

when they 

Shan woaea, note Int, wily, wild than thes^ 

Be boand to one aiaii, and did natwe then 

Idl^ make them apCer toendarethan men? 

They're our dogs, not their own ; if a man be 

Chain'd to a galley, yet the galley's free. 

VTbo hath a ploogh-land, casts all his seed com there. 

And yet allows his groond more com should bear ; 

Thoogh Danaby into die sea most flow. 

The sea receiTcs the Rhine, Volga, and Pa 20 

By nature, which gave it, thb liberty 

Thou loTcst, bat O ! canst thou love it and me? 

t t. 1669, good word }. 4, 1669, eom/irtms 

L 8. 1669, fjkou L II. J669, amd ieofts 

L i^ Nd natMtx 


Likeness glues love ; and if that thou so do, 

To make us like and love, must I change too ? 

More than thy hate, I hate it ; rather let me 

Allow her change, then change as oft as she. 

And so not teach, but force my opinion, 

To love not any one, nor every one. 

To live in one land is captivity. 

To run all countries a wild roguery. 30 

Waters stink soon, if in one place they bide, 

And in the vast sea are more putrified ; 

But when they kiss one bank, and leaving this 

Never look back, but the next bank do kiss. 

Then are they purest ; change is the nursery 

Of music, joy, life, and eternity. 



Once, and but once, found in. thy company, 

All thy supposed escapes are laid on me ; 

And as a thief at bar is questioned there 

By all the men that have been robb'd that year, 

So am I — ^by this traitorous means surprized— 

By thy hydroptic father catechized. 

Though he had wont to search with glazM eyes. 

As though he came to kill a cockatrice ; 

L 31. Z669, they ahidi I 3a. 1669, worn purified 

L 3. Z669, scapes 


Though he hath oft sworn that he would remove 
Thy beaat/s beauty, and food of our love, lo 

Hope of his goods, if I with thee were seen. 
Yet close and secret, as our souls, we've been. 
Though thy immortal mother, which doth lie 
Still buried in her bed, yet will not die, 
Takes this advantage to sleep out daylight. 
And watch thy entries and returns all night ; 
And, when she takes thy hand, and would seem kind. 
Doth search what rings and armlets she can find ; 
And kissing notes the colour of thy face ; 
And fearing lest thou'rt swollen, doth thee em- 
brace; 20 
And to try if thou long, doth name strange meats ; 
And notes thy paleness, blushing, sighs, and sweats ; 
And politicly will to thee confess 
The sins of her own youth's rank lustiness ; 
Yet love these sorceries did remove, and move 
Thee to gull thine own mother for my love. 
Thy little brethren, which like fiury sprites 
Oft skipp'd into our chamber, those sweet nights, 
And kiss'd, and ingled on thy father's knee. 
Were bribed next day to tell what they did see ; 30 
The grim-eight-foot-high-iron-bound serving-man, 
That oft names God in oaths, and only then. 
He that, to bar the first gate, doth as wide 
As the great Rhodian Colossus stride 

1. 21. So 163s ; 1633 omits And 

1. 22. 1669, blushes I. 24. St MS., wantonness 

L 29. 1669, dandled 


— Which, if in hell no other pftini there weie, 

Makei me fear hell, beoiue he mnit be thete — 

Though bj thy father be were hired to thii, 

Could never witneu any touch or kiu. 

But O ! too common ill, I brought with me 

That, which betray'd me to mine enemy, 40 

A loud perfume, which at my enlrance cried 

E'en at thy btber** noie ; lo were we (pied. 

When, like a tyiaat king, that in hU bed 

Smelt gunpowder, the pale wretch shivered. 

Had it been lome bad imell, he would have thought 

That hii own feet, or breath, that imell bad wrought ; 

But as we in our isle imprisoned. 

Where cattle only and diven dogs ate bred. 

The precious nnicom* itrange monsters call, 

So thought he good strange, that bad none at all. 50 

I taught my allies thrir wbistlii^ to forbear ; 

Even my oppreai'd shoes dumb and ipeecblets were ; 

Only thou bitter-sweet, whom I bad laid 

Next me, me traitorously hast betray'd. 

And unsaip«ated hait invisibly 

At once fled unto him, and stay'd with me. 

Base excrement of earth, which dost confound 

Sense from distinguishing the sick from sound I 

By tbee the silly amorous nicks his death 

By drawing in a leprous harlot's breatli ; 60 

By thee, the greatest stain to man's estate 

Falls on as, to be calt'd eOeminate ; 

I. 40. So 163s ; 1633, my L 44. i66g, itaitls 

L 46. 1669, tht inuU 

L sa 1669, thought kt mat ttraagi 




^^ _ _ % , ^ ^^^*3^^^^^^^^ ^iSl ^.^^^^^ A^^^^^^ ai^^^MMkB^ »^^ 

poegoodt ymrfpodl dotksooD dfccsj; 
Aad ynac or; thai tttkes^ke food avsf: 70 
Aad mf pgfc—ei I pie it wilfioflj' 
To cbUb Iky fr&o^ coipoe ; vlt? vin be die ? 


Hku take ay pictare ; Ao^B^ I lid fnevd], 

m mf heut, lAeve ay sal dweUs^ siiall 

Tis fike ae mm, lat I dad, Ywffl be bor^ 
Wben we are shadows bodi, tbaii Ywas belbve. 
'When veatbobeaten I oome bade ; mj band 
Pobaps with rade oais toon, or son-beams tann'd, 
Mjfiice and breast of bahdotb. and mj bead 
With care's baisb sodden boariness o'enprend. 
My bodj a sadc of bones, broken within. 
And powder's Une stains scattered oo my ddn ; 10 
If riral fools tax thee to have lored a man. 
So foul and ooazse^ as, O ! I may seem then, 

1. a So X635 ; X633, Wilk car^s nui suddm stonms 
being d^erspread. 


This shall say what I was ; and thou shaft say, 
" Do his hurts reach me ? doth my worth decay ? 
Or do they reach his judging mind, that he 
Should now love less, what he did love to see ? 
That whidi in him was fair and delicate. 
Was but the milk, which in love's childish state 
Did nurse it ; who now is grown strong enough 
To feed on that, which to weak tastes seems 
tough," -^20 


0, LET me not serve so, as those men serve. 

Whom honour's smokes at once fatten and starve. 

Poorly enrich'd with great men's words or looks ; 

Nor so write my name in thy loving books 

As those idolatrous flatterers, which still 

Their princes' style with many realms fulfil, 

Whence they no tribute have, and where no sway. 

Such services I offer as shall pay 

Themselves ; I hate dead names. O, then let me 

Favourite in ordinary, or no favourite be. lo 

When my soul was in her own body sheathed. 

Not yet by oaths betroth'd, nor kisses breathed 

Into my purgatory, faithless thee. 

Thy heart seemed wax, and steel thy constancy. 

L 2a So 1650 ; 1633, disused tastes 
L 6. So St MS., and Addl MS. 25.707 ; 1633, styles 
which many realms ; 1669, styles which many names 
1. 7. X669, bear no sway 



So aurdes floweis strew*d en the water's £ice 

The called whiripook sack, smack, and embrace, 

Yet drown them ; so the taper^s beamy eye 

Amorously twinkling beckons the giddy fly, 

Yet boms his wings ; and sach the devil is. 

Scarce risitii^ them who are entirely his. 20 

When I behold a stream, which from the spring 

Doth with doabtfol melodious munnoring. 

Or in a speediless slomber, calmly ride 

Her wedded channel's bosom, and there chide, 

And bend her brows, and swell, if any bough 

Do bat stoop down to kiss her utmost brow ; 

Yet, if her often gnawing kisses win 

The tndtorons banks to gape, and let her in, 

She msheth violently, and doth divorce 

Her from her native and her long-kept coarse, 30 

And roars, and braves it, and in gallant scorn, 

In flattering eddies promising retam. 

She flouts her channel, whidi thenceforth is dry ; 

Then say I ; <* That is she, and this am I." 

Yet let not thy deep bitterness beget 

Careless despair in me, for that will whet 

My mind to scorn ; and O, love duU'd with pain 

Was ne'er so wise, nor well arm'd, as disdain. 

Then with new eyes I shall survey thee, and 

Death in thy cheeks, and darkness in thine eye, 40 

L 24. So 1635 ; 1633, then chide 

L 37. 1669, ah 

L 39.. 1669, survey^ and spy 



Though hope bred faith and love ; thus taught, I shall, 
As nations do from Rome, from thy love fall ; 
My hate shall outgrow thine, and utterly 
I will renounce thy dalliance ; and when I 
Am the recusant, in that resolute state 
What hurts it me to be ezconununicate ? 


Nature's lay idiot, I taught thee to love. 

And in that sophistry, O ! thou dost prove 

Too subtle ; fool, thou didst not understand 

The mystic language of the eye nor hand ; 

Nor couldst thou judge the difference of the air 

Of sighs, and say, " This lies, this sounds despair" ; 

Nor by th' eye's water cast a malady 

Desperately hot, or changing feverously. 

I had not taught thee then the alphabet 

Of flowers, how they, devisefuUy being set 10 

And bound up, might with speechless secrecy 

Deliver errands mutely, and mutually. 

Remember since all thy words used to be 

To every suitor, ** Ay, if my friends agree ; " 

Since household charms, thy husband's name to teach, 

Were all the love-tricks that thy wit could reach ; 

L 41. 1669, Through ; 1635, breed 
L 2. 1669, Oh, how thou dost prove 
L 7. St. MS. ; 1633, call a malady; 1635, kmno a 

VOL. I. 8 


*s diaujuis e ooold scarce hinre made 
dM, asBd dttt in anmT'd 

la Imikea pnwcni^ and ton leutaaces. 

TViaitBfltbyaomnydatig his 20 

^oa th' irarid's wnmoa lumag sever'd thee, 
tnee^ mitiM!! to be smb^ nor see— ^ 

As mine ; mlio have with amoroos delicacies 

Kc&ied tbee iaito a bKsslbl pomdise. 

Tiiy places aad ^ood woris wj creatures be j 

I pbaDned LDowiIeilee aad life's tree in tibee ; 

VrbkhO! sbanstnageB taste? Must I, alas! 

Fiame and euuud platc^ aad drink in ^ass? 

Chafe wax fcr other's seals? break a colt's force, 

And lea^ him thei^ beiQg made a ready hoise? 30 


As the sweet sweat of rases in a atill. 

As that whidi from chafed mvdc cat's pores doth trill. 

As the almighty bafan of th' eari^ east, 

Sodi are die sweat draps of my mistress' breast ; 

And en her nedc her skin sodi lustre sets. 

They seem no sweat drops, but peari careanets. 

Rank sweaty froth thy mistress^ brow defiles, 

lake spermatic issoe of ripe menstmons bcnls, 

L 25. So 1669 ; 1633, goodwords 

L 6. St MS. and AddL MSw, 25.707 text ; 1633, coroHets 

\. 8. AddL MSb aST^* mansitngms 


Or like the scum, which, by need's lawless law 
Enforced, Sanserra's starvM men did draw 10 

From parboil'd shoes and boots, and all the rest 
Which were with any sovereign fatness blest; 
And like vile lying stones in safTron'd tin, 
Or warts, or wheals, it hangs upon her skin. 
Round as the world's her head, on every side^ 
Like to the fatal ball which fell on Ide ; 
Or that whereof God had such jealousy, 
As for the ravishing thereof we die. 
Thy head is like a rough-hewn statue of jet. 
Where marks for eyes, nose, mouth, are yet scarce 
set; 20 

Like the first chaos, or flat seeming face 
Of C3mthia, when th' earth's shadows her embrace. 
Like Proserpine's white beauty-keeping chest. 
Or Jove's best fortune's urn, is her fair breast 
Thme's like worm-eaten trunks, clothed in seal's skin, 
Or grave, that's dust without, and stink within. 
And like that slender stalk, at whose end stands 
The woodbine quivering, are her arms and hands. 
Like rough-bark'd elm-boughs, or the russet skin 
Of men late scourged for madness, or for sin, 30 

Like sun-parch'd quarters on the dty gate, 
Such is thy tann'd skin's lamentable state ; 
And like a bunch of ragged carrots stand 
The short swollen fingers of thy gouty hand. 

I 13. So 163s ; 1633, 1669, vile stones, lying 
L 54. So 1635 ; 1633, her gouty hand; 1669, thy 
mistresses hand 


Then like the chemic's masculine equal fire» 

Which in the limbec's warm womb doth inspire 

Into th' earth's worthless dirt a soul of gold. 

Such cherishing heat her best loved part doth hold. 

Thine's like the dread mouth of a fired gun. 

Or like hot liquid metals newly run 40 

Into clay moulds, or like to that ^tna, 

Where round about the grass is burnt away. 

Are not your kisses then as filthy, and more. 

As a worm sucking an enyenom'd sore? 

Doth not thy fearful hand in feeling quake. 

As one which gathering flowers still fears a snake ? 

Is not your last act harsh and violent. 

As when a plough a stony ground doth rent ? 

So kiss good turtles, so devoutly nice 

Are priests in handling reverent sacrifice, 50 

And nice in searching wounds the surgeon is, 

As we, when we embrace, or touch, or kiss. 

Leave her, and I will leave compaiii^ thus. 

She and comparisons are odious. 

i 5a 1669, A priest is in his handlitig^ 




No spring, nor summer beauty hath such grace 

As I have seen m one autumnal face ; 

Young beauties force our love, and that's a rape ; 

This doth but counsel, yet you cannot scape. 

If 'twere a shame to love, here 'twere no shame ; 

Affections here take reverence's name. 

Were her first years the Golden Age ? that's true. 

But now the/re gold oft tried, and ever new. 

That was her torrid and inflaming time ; 

This is her tolerable tropic clime. lo 

Fair eyes ; who asks more heat than comes from hence^ 

He in a fever wishes pestilence. 

Call not these wrinkles, graves ; if graves they were. 

They were Love's graves, for else he is nowhere. 

Yet lies not Love dead here, but here doth sit, 

Vow'd to this trench, like an anachorite, 

And here, till hers, which must be his death, come. 

He doth not dig a grave, but build a tomb. 

Here dwells he ; though he sojourn everywhere 

In progress, yet his standing house is here ; 20 

L 1. 1635, summers 

!• 3» 1635, your love; 1669, our laves 

L 8. 1635, she's gold 1. 10. 1635, habitable 

L 14. 1635, or else 


Here, where still evening is, not noon, nor night ; 

Where no voluptuousness, yet all delight 

In all her words, unto all hearers fit, 

You may at revels, you at council, sit. 

This is love's timber ; youth his underwood ; 

There he, as wine in June, enrages blood ; 

Which then comes seasonablest, when our taste 

And appetite to other things is past. 

Xerxes' strange Lydian love, the platane tree, 

Was loved for age, none being so large as she ; 30 

Or else because, being young, nature did bless 

Her youth with age's glory, barrenness. 

If we love things long sought, age is a thing 

Which we are fifty years in compassing ; 

If transitory things, which soon decay, 
Age must be loveliest at the latest day. 
But name not winter faces, whose skin's slack. 
Lank as an unthrift's purse, but a soul's sack ; 
Whose eyes seek light within, for all here's shade ; 
Whose mouths are holes, rather worn out, than 
made ; 40 

Whose every tooth to a several place is gone, 
To vex their souls at resurrection ; 
Name not these living death-heads unto me, 
For these, not ancient, but antique be. 

L 24. 1669, councils 

I 3a 1635, io old 

L 38. So 1633, 1669 ; 163s, but a foots sack, 

L 42. 1669, lAe soul 

h 44. 1635, nol ancients, bui onHqms 


I hate extremes ; yet I had rather stay 

With tombs than cradles, to wear out a day. 

Since such love's motion natural is, may still 

My love descend, and journey down the hill. 

Not panting after growing beauties ; so 

I shall ebb out with them who homeward ga 50 



Image of her whom I love, more than she. 

Whose fair impression in my faithful heart 
Makes me her medal, and makes her love me. 

As kings do coins, to which their stamps impart 
The value ; go, and take my heart from hence. 

Which now is grown too great and good for me. 
Honours oppress weak spirits, and our sense 

Strong objects dull ; the more, the less we see. 
When you are gone, and reason gone with you. 

Then £euitasy is queen and soul, and all ; 10 

She can present joys meaner than you do, 

Convenient, and more proportionaL 
So, if I dream I have you, I have you, 

For all our jo3rs are but fantastical ; 
And so I 'scape the pain, for pain is true ; 

And sleep, which locks up sense, doth lock out all. 

L 46. 1669, the day 

L 47. 1635, natural station 

1. 5a 1635, ehh on 



Alter a sach fruition I shall wake, 

And, but the waking, nothing shall repent ; 
And shall to love more thankful sonnets make, 

Than if more honour, tears, and pains were 
spent. 20 

But, dearest heart and dearer image, stay ; 

Alas ! true joys at best areHream enough ; 
Though you stay here, you pass too fast away. 

For even at first life's taper is a snuff. 
Fill'd with her love, may I be rather grown 

Mad with much heart, than idiot with none. 




Not that in colour it was like thy hair. 

For armlets of that thou mayst let me wear ; 

Nor that thy hand it oft embraced and kiss'd. 

For so it had that good, which oft I miss'd ; 

Nor for that silly old morality. 

That, as these links were knit, our love should be, 

1. 17. 1669, such a fruition 

L 22. 1669, dreams 

L 2. 1669, Armlets of that thou mayst still 

L 6. 1669, loves 


Mourn I that I thy levenfold chain have lost ; 

Nor for the luck take ; but the bitter cott. 

0» f hall twelve righteous angeli , which at yet 

No leaven of vile solder did admit i zo 

Nor yet by any way have stray'd or gone 

From the first state of their creation ; 

Angels, which heaven commanded to provide 

All things to me, and be my faithful guide ; 

To gain new friends, to appease great enemies ; 

To comfort my soul, when I lie or rise ; 

Shall these twelve innocents, by thy severe 

Sentence, dread judge, my sin's great burden bear ? 

Shall they be damn'd, and in the furnace thrown, 

And punish'd for offences not their own ? ao 

They save not me, they do not ease my pains, 

When in that hell they're burnt and tied in chains. 

Were they but crowns of France, I carM not, 

For most of these their country's natural rot, 

I think, possesseth ; they come here to us 

So pale, so lame, so lean, so ruinous. 

And howsoe'er French kings most Christian be, 

Their crowns are circumcised most Jewishly. 

Or were they Spanish stamps, still travelling. 

That are become as Catholic as their king ; 30 

Those unlick'd bear-whelps, unfiled pistolets, 

That — more than cannon shot— avails or lets ; 

Which, negligently left unrounded, look 

Like many-angled figures in the book 

1. 1$. 1669, old enemies 
I 34. 1669, /or most ofikun tfieir natural country rot 


Of some great ccmjurer that would enforce 
Nature, as these do justice^ from her course ; 
Which, as the soul quickens head, feet and heart. 
As streams, like veins, run through th' earth's every 

Visit all countries, and have silly made 
Gorgeous France, ruin'd, ragged and decay'd, 40 
Scotland, which knew no state, proud in one day. 
And mangled seventeen-headed Belgia. 
Or were it such gold as that wherewithal 
Almighty chemics, from each mineral 
Having by subtle fire a soul out-pull'd. 
Are dirtily and desperately gull'd ; 
I would not spit to quench the fire they're in. 
For they are guilty of much heinous sin. 
But shall my harmless angels perish ? Shall 
I lose my guard, my ease, my food, my all ? 50 

Much hope which they should nourish will be dead ; 
Much of my able youth, and lustihead 
Will vanish ; if thou love, let them alone. 
For thou wilt love me less when they are gone ; 
And be content that some loud squeaking crier, 
Well-pleas'd with one lean thread-bare groat for 

May like a devil roar through every street. 
And gall the finder's consdence, if he meet 
Or let me creep to some dread conjurer. 
That with fantastic scenes fills full much paper ; 60 

1« 35> 1669, dread conjurer 
I 58. 1669, if they meet 


Which hath divided heaven in tenements, 

And with whores, thieves, and murderers sttififd his 

So fall, that though he pass them all in sin. 
He leaves himself no room to enter in. 
But % when all his art and time is spent, 
He say 'twill ne'er be found ; yet be content ; 
Receive from him that doom ungrudgingly. 
Because he is the mouth of destiny. 
Thou sa/st, alas ! the gold doth still remain. 
Though it be changed, and put into a chain. 70 

So in the first fallen angels resteth still 
Wisdom and knowledge, but 'tis tum'd to ill ; 
As these should do good works, and should provide 
Necessities ; but now must nurse thy pride. 
And they are still bad angels ; mine are none ; 
For form gives being, and their form is gone. 
Pity these angels yet ; their dignities 
Pass Virtues, Powers, and Principalities. 
But thou art resolute ; thy will be done ; 
Yet with such anguish, as her only son So 

The mother in the hungry grave doth lay^ 
Unto the fire these martjrrs I betray. 
Good souls — ^for you give life to everything—* 
Good angels — ^for good messages you bring— 
Destined you might have been to such an one, 
As would have loved and worshipp'd you alone ; 
One that would suffer hunger, nakedness. 
Yea death, ere he would make your number less ; 

L 63. 1669, flace them all 1. 67. 1669, thi doom 


Bnt, I am guilty of your sad decay ; 

May 3rour few fellows longer with me stay. 90 

But O I thou wretched finder whom I hate 

So, that I almost pity thy estate, 

Gold being the heaviest metal amongst all, 

Biay my most heavy curse upon thee &IL 

Here fetter'd, manaded, and hang'd in chains, 

First majrst thou be ; then chain'd to hellish pains ; 

Or be with foreign gold bribed to betray 

Thy country, and^£ul both of it and thy pay. 

May the next thing thou stoop'st to reach, contain 

Poison, whose nimble fiime rot thy moist brain ; 100 

Or libels, or some interdicted thing, 

Which negligently kept thy ruin bring. 

Lust-bred diseases rot thee ; and dwell with thee 

Itching desire, and no ability. 

May all the evils that gold ever wrought ; 

All mischief that all devils ever thought ; 

Want after plenty, poor and gouty age. 

The plagues of travellers, love, marriage 

Afflict thee, and at thy life's last moment. 

May thy swollen tins themselves to thee present. 1 10 

But, I forgive ; repent thee, .honest man t 
Gold is restorative ; restore it then : 
But if from it thou be'st loth to depart. 
Because 'tis cordial, would 'twere at thy heart. 

L 98. 1669 omits thy 

L 108. Z669, love and marriage 

L 113. 1669, But if that from it thou bc'st loth to part 



Come, Fates ; I fear you not ! All whom I owe 
Are paid, but you ; then 'rest me ere I go. 
But Chance from you all sovereignty hath got ; 
L>ove woundeth none but those whom Death dares 

True if you were, and just in equity, 
I should have vanquished her, as you did me ; 
Else lovers should not brave Death's pains, and live ; 
But 'tis a rule, " Death comes not to relieve." 
Or, pale and wan Death's terrors, are they laid 
So deep in lovers, they make Death afraid ? 10 

Or — the least comfort — ^have I company? 
O'ercame she Fates, Love, Death, as well as me ? 

Yes, Fates do silk unto her distaff pay. 
For ransom, which tax they on us do lay. 
Love gives her youth — ^which is the reason why 
Youths, for her sake, some wither and some die. 
Poor Death can nothing give ; yet, for her sake. 
Still in her turn, he doth a lover take. 
And if Death should prove false, she fears him not ; 
Our Muses, to redeem her, she hath got. 20 

L 5. So 1669 ; 1635, Else^ if you were 

1. 12. So Haslewood-Kingsborough MS. (giving 

Fates, Lovet Death, in a different order) ; 1635, Or cuk 

the Fates Ijve death 





SiNCB she must go, and I must mourn, come night, 

Environ me with darkness, whilst I write ; 

Shadow that hell unto me, which alone 

I am to suffer when my love is gone. 

Alas ! the darkest magic cannot do it. 

And that great hell, to boot, are shadows to it. 

Should Cynthia quit thee, Venus, and each star, 

It would not form one thought dark as mine are. 

I could lend them obscureness now, and say 

Out of myself, there should be no more day. lo 

Such is already my self-want of s^ht, 

Did not the fire within me force a light 

O Love, that fire and darkness should be mix'd. 

Or to thy triumphs such strange torments fix*d ! 

Is it because thou thyself art blind, that we, 

Thy martyrs, must no more each other see ? 

Or takest thou pride to break us on thy wheel. 

And view old Chaos in the pains we feel? 

Or have we left undone some mutual rite. 

That thus with parting thou seek'st us to spite? 20 

No, no. The fault is mine, impute it to me, 

Or rather to conspiring destiny, 

L 4. So 1669 ; 1635, my soul 

L 5. Editions before 1669 omit IL 5—44 


Which, since I loved in jest before, decreed 

That I should suffer, when I loved indeed ; 

And therefore, sooner now than I can say, 

I saw the golden fruit, 'tis rapt away ; 

Or as I'd watched one drop in the vast stream. 

And I left wealthy only in a dream. 

Yet, Love, thouVt blinder than myself in this, 

To vex my dove-like friend for my amiss ; 30 

And where one sad truth may expiate 

Thy wrath, to make her fortune run my fate. 

So blinded justice doth, when favourites fall, 

Strike them, their house^ their friends, their favourites 

Was't not enough that thou didst dart thy fires 
Into our bloods, inflaming our desires. 
And madest us sigh, and blow, and pant, and bum. 
And then thyself into our flames didst turn ? 
Was't not enough that thou didst hazard us 
To paths in love so dark and dangerous, 40 

And those so ambush'd round with household spies. 
And over all thy husband's towering eyes. 
Inflamed with th' ugly sweat of jealousy ; 
Yet went we not still on in constancy ? 
Have we for this kept guards, like spy on spy ? 
Had correspondence whilst the foe stood by ? 
Stolen, more to sweeten them, our many blisses 
Of meetings, conference, embracements, kisses ? 

L 23. So Haslewood-Kingsborough MS. ; 1669, 
loved for me before 

1. 45. So 1669 ; 163s, o*er spy 
VOL, I. 9 


Shadow'd with Diligence onr best respects ? 
Varied oar language through all dialects 50 

Of becks, winks, looks, and often under boards 
Spoke dialogues with our feet far from our words ? 
Have we proved all the secrets of our art, 
Yea, thy pale inwards, and thy panting heart ? 
And, after all this passed purgatory. 
Must sad divorce make us the vulgar story? 
First let our eyes be riveted quite through 
Our turning brain, and both our lips grow to ; 
Let our arms clasp like ivy, and our fear 
Freeze us together, that we may stick here, 60 

Till Fortune, that would ruin us with the deed, 
Strain his eyes open, and yet make them bleed. 
For Love it cannot be, whom hitherto 
I have accused, should such a mischief do. 
O Fortune, thou'rt not worth my least exclaim. 
And plague enough thou hast in thy own name. 
Do thy great worst ; my friend and I have charms, 
Though not against thy strokes, against thy harms. 
Rend us in sunder ; thou canst not divide 
Our bodies so, but that our souls are tied, 70 

And we can love by letters still and gifts. 
And thoughts and dreams ; love never wanteth 

1. 49. So 1669 ; 1635, most respects 
L 52. So 1669 ; 1635 omits our 
L ^7. Editions before 1669 omit U. 57 — 66 
L 67. So Haslewood-Kingslx>rough MS. ; 1635, 
Fortune, do thy worst, my friend and I have arms 
L 69. So 1669 ; 1635, Bend us in sunder 



I will not look upon the quickening sun, 

But straight her beauty to my sense shall run ; 

The air shall note her soft, the fire, most pure ; 

Waters suggest her clear, and the earth sure. 

Time shall not lose our passages ; the spring, 

How fresh our love was in the beginning ; 

The summer, how it ripen'd in the year ; 

And autumn, what our golden harvests were ; 80 

The winter I'll not think on to spite thee, 

But count it a lost season ; so shall she. 

And dearest friend, since we must part, drown 

With hope of day — ^burdens well borne are light — ; 
The cold and darkness longer hang somewhere, 
Yet Phoebus equally lights all the sphere ; 
And what we cannot in like portion pay 
The world enjojrs in mass, and so we may. 
Be then ever yourself, and let no woe 
Win on your health, your youth, your beauty ; so 90 
Declare yourself base Fortune's enemy. 
No less be your contempt than her inconstancy ; 
That I may grow enamoured on your mind. 
When mine own thoughts I here neglected find. 
And this to the comfort of my dear I vow, 
My deeds shall still be what my deeds are now ; 

L 79. 1639, iiinripened 
1. 83. Editions before 1669 omit 11. 83—94 
L 87. Haslewood-Kingsborough MS., And what he 
ean*t in like proportion pay 

L 92. Haslewood-Kingsborough MS., than conUancy 


The poles shall more to teach me ere I start ; 
And when I change my loTe, 111 change my heart. 
Nay, if I wax but cold in my desire^ 
Think, heaven hath motion lost, and the world, 
fire. ICO 

Much more I could, bat many words have made 
That (rft suspected which men most persuade. 
Take therefore all in this ; I lore so tme^ 
As I will nerer look for less in yon. 



Hark, news, O envy ; thon shalt hear descried 

My Julia ; who as yet was ne'er envied. 

To vomit gall in slander, swell her veins 

With calumny, that hell itself disdains. 

Is her continual practice ; does her best^ 

To tear opinion e'en out of the breast 

Of dearest firiends, and — ^which is worse than vile — 

Sticks jealousy in wedlock ; her own child 

Scapes not the showers of envy. To repeat 

The monstrous £eishions how, were alive to eat lo 

Dear reputation ; would to God she were 

But half so loth to act vice, as to hear 

My mild reproo£ Lived Mantuan now again 

That female Mastix to limn with his pen, 

L I03. So 1669 ; 1635, would persuade 


This she Chimera that hath eyes of fire, 
Burning with anger — anger feeds desire — 
Tongued like the night crow, whose ill boding cries 
Give out for nothing but new injuries ; 
Her breath like to the juice in Tsenarus, 
That blasts the springs, though ne'er so prosper- 
ous ; ao 
Her hands, I know not how, used more to spill 
The food of others than herself to fill ; 
But O ! her mind, that Orcus, which includes 
Legions of mischief, countless multitudes 
Of formless curses, projects unmade up, 
Abuses yet unfashion'd, thoughts corrupt. 
Misshapen cavils, palpable untroths. 
Inevitable errors, self-accusing loaths. 
These, like those atoms swarming in the sun, 
Throng in her bosom for creation. 30 
I blush to give her half her due ; yet say. 
No poison's half so bad as Julia. 



I SING no harm, good sooth, to any wight, 
To lord or fool, cuckold, beggar, or knight. 
To peace-teaching lawyer, proctor, or brave 
Reformed or reducM captain, knave, 

L a8. Haslewood-Kingsborough MS., oaiht 
L a. 1669, to fool 


Officer, juggler, or justice of peace, 

Juror or judge ; I touch no fat sow's grease ; 

I am no libeller, nor will be any. 

But — ^like a trae man — say there are too many. 

I fear not ore tenus ; for my tale 

Nor count nor counsellor will look red or pale. lo 

A citizen and his wife the other day 
Both riding on one horse, upon the way 
I overtook ; the wench, a pretty peat. 
And — ^by her eye — well fitting for the feat. 
I saw the lecherous citizen turn back 
His head, and on his wife's lip steal a smack ; 
Whence apprehending that the man was kind. 
Riding before to kiss his wife behind. 
To get acquaintance with him I began 
To sort discourse fit for so fine a man ; 20 

I ask'd the number of the plaguing bill ; 
Ask'd if the custom farmers held out still ; 
Of the Virginian plot, and whether Ward 
The traffic of the island seas had marr'd ; 
Whether the Britain Burse did fill apace. 
And likely were to give th' Exchange disgrace. 
Of new-built Aldgate, and the Moor-field crosses, 
Of store of bankrupts, and poor merchants* losses 
I urgM him to speak ; but he — as mute 
As an old courtier worn to hb last suit— 30 

L 5. 1650, Officer^ ptctge L za 2669 omits look 

I 21. 1669, plaguy t 24. x66g. Midland uas 

ELEGIES. * 135 

Replies with only yeas and najrs ; at last 

— To fit his element — my theme I cast 

On tradesmen's gains ; that set his tongue a-^oing. 

'* Alas ! good sir," quoth he, '* there is no doing 

In court or city now " ; she smiled, and I, 

And, in my conscience, both gave him the lie 

In one met thought ; but he went on apace. 

And at the present time with such a face 

He rail'd, as fray'd me ; for he gave no praise 

To any but my Lord of Essex* days ; 40 

Call'd that the age of action—" True ! ** quoth I— 

** There's now as great an itch of bravery. 

And heat of taking up, but cold lay down, 

For, put to push of pay, away they run ; 

Our only city trades of hope now are 

Bawds, tavern-keepers, whores, and scriveners. 

The much of privileged kinsmen and store 

Of fresh protections make the rest all poor. 

In the first state of their creation 

Though many stoutly stand, yet proves not one 50 

A righteous pay-master." Thus ran he on 

In a continued rage ; so void of reason 

Seem'd his harsh talk, I sweat for fear of treason. 

And — troth — how could I less ? when in the prayer 

For the protection of the wise Lord Mayor, 

L 38. 1669, tinui 

1. 41. 1669, those 

L 41. 1669, quoth he 

L 46. 1669, whore and scrivener 

L 47. 1669, kingsmen and the store 


And his wise farethien's worships, when one prayeth. 

He swoie that none oonld say amen with faith. 

To get off him from what I glow'd to hear. 

In hi^ypy time an angel did appear, 

The bright sign of a lored and well-tried inn, 60 

"Where many citizens with their wives had been 

Well used and often ; here I pray'd him stay. 

To take some doe refreshment by the way. 

Look, how he look'd that hid the gold, his hope, 

And at return found nothing bat a rope, 

So he at me ; refused and made away. 

Though willing she pleaded a weary stay. 

I found my miss, struck hands, and pra/d him tell — 

To hold acquaintance still—where he did dwell. 

He barely named the street, promised the wine, 70 

But his kind wife gave me the very sign. 



To make the doubt clear, that no woman's true. 
Was it my fate to prove it strong in you ? 
Thought I, but one had breathM purest air ; 
And must she needs be false, because she's fair? 
Is it your beauty's mark, or of your youth. 
Or your perfection, not to study truth ? 

L 58. So 1669 ; 1635 omits off 

L 64. 1669, his gold L 65, 1669, afs 

L 66. 1669, Off 0M 1. 67. 1669, a weary day 


Or think you heaven is deaf, or hath no eyes, 

Or those it hath smile at your perjuries? 

Are vows so cheap with women, or the matter 

Whereof they're made, that they are writ in wateri 10 

And blown away with wind ? Or doth their breath, 

Both hot and cold, at once make life and death? 

Who could have thought so many accents sweet 

Form'd into words, so many sighs should meet 

As from our hearts, so many oaths, and tears 

Sprinkled among, all sweeten'd by our fears. 

And the divine impression of stolen kisses. 

That seal'd the rest, should now prove empty blisses ? 

Did you draw bonds to forfeit? sign to break? 

Or must we read you quite from what you speak, 20 

And find the truth out the wrong way? or must 

He first desire you false, would wish you just? 

O ! I profane 1 though most of women be 

This kind of beast, my thoughts shall except thee. 

My dearest love ; though froward jealousy 

With circumstance might urge thy inconstancy, 

Sooner I'll think the sun will cease to cheer 

The teeming earth, and that forget to bear ; 

Sooner that rivers will run back, or Thames 

With ribs of ice in June will bind his streams ; 30 

Or nature, by whose strength the world endures, 

Would change her course, before you alter yours. 

But 01 that treacherous breast, to whom weak 

Did drift our counsels, and we both may ruci 

1. 34. 1669, Did trust 




Haying his fidsehood found too late ; 'twas he 
That made me cast you guilty, and you me ; 
Whilst he, black wretch, betray'd each simple 

We spake, onto the cunning of a third. 
Cursed may he be, that so our love hath slain, 
And wanderon the earth, wretched as Cain, 40 

Wretched as he, and not deserve least pity. 
In plaguing him, let misery be witty ; 
Let all eyes shun him, and he shun each eye. 
Till he be noisome as his infamy ; 
May he without remorse deny God thrice. 
And not be trusted more on his soul's price ; 
And, after all self-torment, when he dies. 
May wolves tear out his heart, vultures his eyes, 
Swine eat hb bowels, and his falser tongue 
That utter'd all, be to some raven flung; 50 

And let his carrion corse be a longer feast 
To the king's dogs, than any other beast. 
Now have I cursed, let us our love revive ; 
In me the flame was never more alive. 
I could b^n again to court and praise, 
And in that pleasure lengthen the short days 
Of my life's lease ; like painters that do take 
Delight, not in made work, but whiles they make. 
I could renew those times, when first I saw 
Love in your eyes, that gave my tongue the law 60 
To like what you liked ; and at masks and plays 
Comipend the self-same actors, the same ways ; 

L 53; 1669, 1 hav9 



Ask how you did, and often with intent 

Of being officious, be impertinent ; 

All which were such soft pastimes, as in these 

Love was as subtly catch'd as a disease. 

But being got, it is a treasure sweet. 

Which to defend is harder than to get ; 

And ought not be profaned, on either part. 

For though 'tis got by chance, 'tis kept by art. 70 



By our first strange and fatal interview. 

By all desires which thereof did ensue. 

By our long starving hop>es, by that remorse 

Which my words masculine persuasive force 

Begot in thee, and by the memory 

Of hurts, which spies and rivals threatened me, 

I calmly beg. But by thy father's wrath. 

By all pains, which want and divorcement hath, 

I conjure thee, and all the oaths which I 

And thou have sworn to seal joint constancy, 10 

Here I unswear, and overswear them thus ; 

Thou shalt not love by ways so dangerous. 

1. 3. 1669, stHving 

1. II. 1669, I here unswear 

1. 12. 1669, dy means 


Temper, O £giir love, love's impetnoos r^e ; 

Be my true mistress still, not mj feign'd page. 

Ill go, axxl, by thy kind leave, leave behind 

Thee, only worthy to muse in my mind 

Thirst to come back ; O ! if thon die before. 

My soul from other lands to thee shall soar. 

Thy else almighty beanty cannot move 

Rage from the seas, nor thy love teach them love, ao 

Nor tame wild Boreas' harshness ; thoa hast read 

How roughly he in pieces shivered 

Fair Orithea, whom he swore he loved. 

Fall ill or good, 'tis madness to have proved 

Dangers unnrged ; feed on this flattery, 

That absent lovers one in th' other be. 

Dissemble nothing, not a boy, nor change 

Thy body's habit, nor mind ; be not strai^ 

To thyself only. All will spy in thy faaot 

A blushing womanly discovering grace. 30 

Richly clothed apes are call'd apes, and as soon 

Eclipsed as bright, we call the moon the moon. 

Men of France, changeable chameleons, 

Spitals of diseases, shops of fashions, 

Love's faellers, and the rightest company 

Of players, which upon the world's stage be. 

Will quickly know thee, and no less, alas 1 

Th' indi£ferent Italian, as we pass 

1 14. 1669, my true mistress ^ not myfeignkd 

L 23. 1669, The fair 

1. 35. 1669, Lives 

L 37. Z669, Will too too quickly know tkee^ and alas! 



His wann land, well content to think thee page, 
Will hunt thee with such lust, and hideous rage, 40 
As Lot's fair guests were vex*d. But none of these. 
Nor spongy hydroptic Dutch shall thee displease, 
If thou stay here. O stay here, for for thee 
England is only a worthy galleiy. 
To walk in expectation, till from thence 
Our greatest king call thee to his presence. 
When I am gone, dream me some happiness ; 
Nor let thy looks our long-hid love confess ; 
Nor praise, nor dispraise me, nor bless nor curse 
Openly love's force, nor in bed fright thy nurse 50 
With midnight's startings^ crying out, O ! O ! 
Nurse, O ! my love is slain ; I saw him go 
O'er the white Alps alone ; I saw him, I, 
Assail'd, fight, taken, stabb'd, bleed, fall, and die. 
Augur me better chance, except dread Jove 
Think it enough for me to have had thy love. 


The heavens rejoice in motion ; why should I 

Abjure my so much loved variety, 

And not with many youth and love divide ? 

Pleasure is none, if not diversified. 

The sun that, sitting in the chair of light. 

Sheds flame into what else so ever doth seem bright. 

Is not contented at one sign to inn. 

But ends his year, and with a new begin. 


All thiogs do willingly in change delight, 

The fruitful mother of our appetite ; lo 

Rivers the clearer and more pleasing are, 

Where their fair-spreading streams ran wide and 

And a dead lake, that no strange bark doth greet, 
Corrupts itself, and what doth live in it 
Let no man tell me such a one is fair. 
And worthy all alone my love to share. 
Nature in her hath done the liberal part 
Of a kind mistress, and employed her art. 
To make her lovable, and I aver 
Him not humane, that would turn back from her. 20 
I love her well, and would, if need were, die. 
To do her service. But follows it that I 
Must serve her only, when I may have choice ? 
The law is hard, and shall not have my voice. 
The last I saw in all extremes is fair. 
And holds me in the sunbeams of her hair ; 
Her nymph-like features such agreements have, 
That I could venture with her to the grave. 
Another's brown ; I like her not the worse ; 
Her tongue is soft and takes me with discourse. 30 
Others, for that they well descended were. 
Do in my love obtain as large a share ; 
And though they be not fair, 'tis much with me 
To win their love only for their degree. 
And though I fail of my required ends. 
The attempt is glorious and itself commends. 
How happy were our sires in ancient time. 
Who held plurality of loves no crime. 


With them it was accounted charity 
To stir up race of all indifferently ; 40 

Kindred were not exempted from the bands, 
Which with the Persian still in usage stands. 
Women were then no sooner ask'd than won, 
And what they did was honest and well done. 
But since this little Honour hath been used, 
Our weak credulity hath been abused ; 
The golden laws of nature are repealed, 
Which our first fathers in such reverence held ; 
Our liberty reversed and charters gone ; 
And we made servants to Opinion 5 50 

A monster in no certain shape attired, 
And whose original is much desired, 
Formless at first, but growing on its fashions, 
And doth prescribe manners and laws to nations. 
Here love received immedicable harms, 
And was despoiled of his daring arms ; 
A greater want than is his daring eyes. 
He lost those awful wings with which he flies. 
His sinewy bow and those immortal darts. 
With which he is wont to bruise resisting 
hearts. 60 

Only some few, strong in themselves and free, 
Retain the seeds of ancient liberty. 
Following that part of love although depress^. 
Yet make a throne for him within their breast, 
In spite of modem censures him avowing 
Their sovereign, all service him allowing 
Amongst which troop although I am the least. 
Yet equal in perfection with the best, 


I glory in subjection of his hand. 

Nor ever did decline his least command ; yo 

For in whatever form the message came 

My heart did open and receive the same, 

But time will in his course a point descry 

When I this lovM service must deny ; 

For our allegiance temporary is ; 

With firmer age returns our liberties. 

What time in jrears and judgment we reposed, * 

Shall not so easily be to change disposed, 

Nor to the art of several eyes obeying, 

But beauty with true worth securely weighing ; 8q 

Which being found assembled in some one 

We'll leave her ever, and love her alone. 


Whoever loves, if he do not propose 

The right true end of love, he's one that goes 

To sea for nothing but to make him sick. 

Love is a bear-whelp bom ; if we o*er-lick 

Our love, and force it new strange shapes to take. 

We err, and of a lump a monster make. 

Were not a calf a monster, that were grown 

Faced like a man, though better than his own ? 

Perfection is in unity ; prefer 

One woman first, and then one thing in her. lo 

L 82. Query ? love ker ever 

L 5. So 1661 ; 1669, strong shapes 



I, when I value gold, may think upon 
The ductileness, the application. 
The wholesomeness, the ingenuity. 
From rust, from soil, from fire ever free ; 
But if I love it, 'tis because 'tis made 
By our new nature, use, the soul of trade. 

All this in women we might think upon, 
— If women had them — and yet love but one. 
Can men more injure women than to say 
They love them for that, by which they're not 
they? 20 

Makes virtue woman ? must I cool my blood 
Till I both be, and find one wise and good ? 
May barren angels love so. But if we 
Make love to woman, virtue is not she. 
As beauty is not, nor wealth. He that strays thus 
From her to hers is more adulterous 
Than if he took her maid. Search every sphere 
And firmament, our Cupid is not there. 
He's an infernal God, and undei^;round 
With Pluto dwells, where gold and fire abound. 30 
Men to such gods their sacrificing coals 
Did not on altars lay, but pits and holes. 
Although we see celestial bodies move 
Above the earth, the earth we till and love. 
So we her airs contemplate, words and heart, 
And virtues, but we love the centric part. 

Nor is the soul more worthy, or more fit 
For love, than this, as infinite as it. 

I 25. So 1661 ; 1669, beauties no nor wealth 
VOL. I. 10 


Bat in attaining this desired place 

How much they err, that set out at the face? 40 

The hair a forest is of ambushes, 

Of springes, snares, fetters, and manacles ; 

The brow becalms us when 'tis smooth and plain. 

And when 'tis wrinkled, shipwrecks us again ; 

Smooth, 'tis a paradise, where we would have 

Immortal stay, but wrinkled 'tis a g^ve. 

The nose, like to the first meridian, runs 

Not 'twixt an east and west, but 'twixt two sans ; 

It leaves a cheek, a rosy hemisphere. 

On either side, and then directs us where 5^ 

Upon the islands fortunate we &I1, 

Not faint Canaries, but ambrosial. 

Her swelling lips, to which when we are come, 

We anchor there, and think ourselves at home, 

For they seem all ; there Siren's songs and there 

Wise Delphic oracles do fill the ear. 

There, in a creek where chosen pearls do swell, 

The remora, her cleaving tongue, doth dwell 

These and the glorious promontory, her chin, 

O'erpast, and the straight Hellespont between 60 

The Sestos and Abydos of her breasts. 

Not of two lovers, but two loves, the nests, 

1. 41. So 1661 ; 1669, a fount 

L 47. So 1661 ; 1669, a sweet meridian 

t 53. So 1661 ; 1669, C/nto her swelling lips when 

we are come 

L 57. So 1661 ; 1669, Then 

L 60. So z66i ; 1669, Being past, the Straits of 



Succeeds a boundless sea, but yet thine eye 

Some island moles may scattered there descry ; 

And sailing towards her India, in that way 

Shall at her fair Atlantic navel stay. 

Though there the current be the pilot made. 

Yet, ere thou be where thou shouldst be embay*d. 

Thou shalt upon another forest set. 

Where many shipwreck, and no further get. 70 

When thou art there, consider what this chase 

Misspent by thy beginning at the face. 

Rather set out below ; practise thy art; 
Some symmetiy the foot hath with that part 
Which thou dost seek, and is thy map for 

Lovsly enough to stop, but not stay at. 
Least subject to disguise and change it is ; 
Men say the devil never can change his ; 
It is the emblem that hath figured 
Firmness ; 'tis the first part that comes to bed. 80 
Civility we see refined ; the kiss, 
Which at the face began, transplanted is. 
Since to the hand, since to the imperial knee. 
Now at the papal foot delights to be. 
If kings think that the nearer way, and do 
Rise from the foot, lovers may do so too ; 
For, as free spheres move faster far than can 
Birds, whom the air resists, so may that man 
Which goes this empty and ethereal way, 
Than if at beauty's elements he stay. 90 


L 90. So z66z ; 1669, beauty t etumia 



Ridi Natvre m women wisely made 
Two pume^ and their mouths aversely bid. 
They dien, which to the lower tribute owe, 
Tliat wsy which that exchequer looks must go ) 
He whidi doth aot, his error is as great. 
As who by dyster gives the fitOTnarh meat. 



CoMl, madam, come, all rest my powers defy ; 

Until I labour, I in labour lie. 

The foe ofltimes, having the foe in sight. 

Is tired with standing, though he never fight 

Off with that girdle, like heaven's zone glittering. 

But a fiir fiurer world encompassing. 

Unpin that spangled breast-plate, which yon wear. 

That th' eyes of busy fools may be stopp'd there. 

Unlace yoursdf, for that harmonious chime 

Tells me from you that now it is bed-time. lo 

Off with that happy busk, which I envy. 

That still can be, and.still can stand so nigh. 

Your gown going off such beauteous state revealS) 

As when firom floweiy meads th' hill's shadow steals. 

Off with your wiry coronet, and show 

The hairy diadems which on you do grow. 

1. i6. So Stephens MS. ; 1669, The hairy diadem 
which on your head doih grow 

ELEGIES. • 149 

Off with yonr hose and shoes ; then softly tread 
In this love's hallow'd temple, this soft bed. 
In such white robes heaven's angels used to be 
Revealed to men ; thou, angel, bring'st with thee 20 
A heaven-like Mahomet's paradise ; and though 
111 spirits walk in white, we easily know 
By this these angels from an evil sprite ; 
Those set our hairs, but these our flesh upright. 

Licence my roving hands, and let them go 
Before, behind, between, above, below. 
Oh, my America, my Newfoundland, 
My kingdom, safest when with one man mann'd. 
My mine of precious stones, my empery ; 
How am I blest in thus discovering thee ! 30 

To enter in these bonds, is to be free ; 
Then, where my hand is set, my soul shall be. 

Full nakedness ! All joys are due to thee ; 
As souls unbodied, bodies unclothed must be 
To taste whole joys. Gems which you women 

Are like Atlanta's ball cast in men's views ; 
That, when a fool's eye lighteth on a gem. 
His earthly sSul might court that, not them. 
Like pictures, or like books' gay coverings made 
For laymen, are all women thus array'd. 40 

Themselves are only mjrstic books, which we 
— Whom their imputed grace will dignify — 

L 17. So Stephens MS. ; 2669, Now of with those 
1. 22. Query? All spirits 

2MfeIXF^ ^ZJ. 


T^Bsc s aft peBBOise <£ixic is nmicssis i 




See, sir, how, as the sun*s hot masculine flame 
Begets strange creatures on Nile's dirty slime, 
In me your fatherly yet lusty rhyme 
— For these songs are their fruits — have wrought the 

But though th' engendering force from which they 
Be strong enough, and Nature doth admit 
Seven to be bom at once ; I send as yet 
But six; they say the seventh hath still some 
I choose your judgment, which the same degree 
Doth with her sister, your invention, hold, zo 

As fire these drossy rhymes to purify, 
Or as elixir, to change them to gold. 
You are that alchemist, which always had 
Wit, whose one spark could make good things 
of bad. 



1. Deign at my hands this crown of prayer and praise^ 
Weaved in my lone devout melancholy, 

^Thou which of good hast, yea, art treasury, 
All changing unchanged Ancient of days. 
But do not with a vile crown. of frail bays 
Reward my Muse's white sincerity ; 
But what Thy thorny crown gain'd, that give me, 
A crown of glory, which doth flower always. 
The ends crown our works, but Thou crown'st our 

For at our ends begins our endless rest. lo 

The first last end, now zealously possessed, 
With a strong sober thirst my soul attends. 
'Tis time that heart and voice be lifted high ; 
Salvation to all that will is nigh, 


2. Salvation to all that will is nigh ; 

That All, which always is all everywhere, 
Which cannot sin, and yet all sins must bear. 
Which cannot die, yet cannot choose but die, 
Lo ! &ithful Virgin, yields Himself to lie 
In prison, in thy womb ; and though He there 
Can take no sin, nor thou give, yet He'll wear. 
Taken from thence, flesh, which death's force may 

I. 1. 2. So 1635 ; 1633, low 
L 10. So 1635 ; 1633, our end 


Ere by the spheres time was created thou 
Wast in His mind, who is thy Son, and Brother ; lo 
Whom thou conceivest, conceived; yea, thou art now 
Thy Maker's maker, and thy Father's mother. 
Thou hast light in dark, and sbutt'st in little room 
Immensity f doisUi^d in thy dear womb. 


3. Immensity^ cloistef'd in thy dear womh^ 
Now leaves His well-beloved imprisonment. 
There he hath made himself to his intent 
Weak enough, now into our world to come. 

But O ! for thee, for Him, hath th* inn no room ? 
Yet lay Him in this stall, and from th' orient, 
Stars, and wise men will travel to prevent 
The effects of Herod's jealous general doonu 
See'st thou, my soul, with thy faith's eye, how He 
Which fills all place, yet none holds Him, doth lie ? 
Was not His pity towards thee wondrous high, 1 1 
That would have need to be pitied by thee ? 
Kiss Him, and with Him into Egypt go, 
With His kind mother^ who partakes thy woe, 


4. With His kind mother ^ who partakes thy woe^ 
Joseph, turn back ; see where your child doth sit. 
Blowing, yea blowing out those sparks of wit, 
Which Himself on the doctors did bestow. 

3. 1. 6. 1669, his stall . L 8. 1669, effect 

L 9. So 163s ; X633. eyes 


The Word bat lately could not speak, and lo ! 
It suddenly speaks wonders ; whence comes it, 
That all which was, and all which should be 

A shallow seeming child should deeply know ? 
His Godhead was not soul to His manhood. 
Nor had time i&elloVd Him to this ripeness ; lo 
But as for one which hath a long task, 'tis good. 
With the sun to begin His business. 
He in His age's morning thus began. 
By miracles exceeding pcwer of man* 


5. By mircules exceeding power of man^ 
He faith in some, envy in some begat. 
For, what weak spirits admire, ambitious hate ; 
In both affections many to Him ran. 
But O ! the worst are most, they will and can, 
Alas ! and do, unto tV Immaculate, 
Whose creature Fate is, now prescribe a fate, 
Measuring self-life's infinity to span. 
Nay to an inch. Lo ! where condemned He 
Bears His own cross, with pain, yet by and by 10 
When it bears him. He must bear more and 

Now Thou art lifted up, draw me to Thee, 
And at Thy death giving such liberal dole. 
Moist vnth one drop of Thy blood my dry soul, 

5. I 8. Z669, inJinU* 1. a. St MS., a span 




6. Moist with one drop of Thy bloody my dry 
Shall — ^though she now be in extreme degree 
Too stony hard, and yet too fleshly — be 
Freed by that drop, from being starved, hard or foul, 
And life by this death abled shall control 
Death, whom Thy death slew ; nor shall to me 
Fear of first or last death bring misery. 
If in Thy life-book my name thou enrolL 
Flesh in that long sleep is not patrified. 
But made that there, of which, and for which it was ; 
Nor can by other means be glorified. 1 1 

May then sin's sleep and death soon firom me pass. 
That waked firom both, I again risen may 
Salute the last and everlasting day. 


7. Salute the last and everlasting day^ 
Jay at th' uprising of this Sun, and Sqd» 
Ye whose true tears, or tribulation 
Have purely wash'd, or burnt your drossy clay. 
Behold, the Highest, parting hence away, 
Lightens the dark clouds, which He treads upon ; 
Nor doth He by ascending show alone. 
But first He, and He first enters the way. 

6. L a So 1635 ; X633, little book 
L zz. Si. IAS., purified 

7. L 3. So 1635; 1^^ just tears 


O strong Ram, which hast batter'd heaven for me ! 
Mild Lamb which with Thy Blood hast mark'd the 

path! 10 

Bright Torch, which shinest, that I the way may see ! 
Of with Thy own Blood quench Thy own just 

And if Thy Holy Spirit my Muse did raise, 
Dtiffn at my hands this crown of prayer and praise. 



Her of your name, whose fair inheritance 

Bethina was, and jointure Magdalo, 
An active faith so highly did advance. 

That she once knew, more than the Church did 
The Resurrection ; so much good there is 

Deliver'd of her, that some Fathers be 
Loth to believe one woman could do this ; 

But think these Magdalens were two or three. 
Increase their number. Lady, and their fame ; 

To their devotion add your innocence ; lo 

Take so much of th' example as of the name, 

The latter half; and in some recompense, 
That they did harbour Christ Himself, a guest. 

Harbour these hymnsi to His dear Name addressed. 




Thou hast made me, and shall Thy work decay ? 

Repair me now, for now mme end doth haste ; 

I run to death, and Death meets me as fast, 

And all my pleasures are like yesterday. 

I dare not move my dim eyes any way ; 

Despair behind, and Death before doth cast 

Such terror, and my feeble flesh doth waste 

By sin in it, which it towards hell doth weigh. 

Only Thou art above, and when towards Thee 

By Thy leave I can look, I rise again ; 10 

But our old subtle foe so tempteth me. 

That not one hour myself I can sustain. 

Thy grace may wing me to prevent his art 

And thou like adamant draw mine iron heart. 


As due by many titles I resign 

Myself to thee, O God. First I was made 

By Thee ; and for Thee, and when I was decayed 

Thy blood bought that, the which before was Thine. 

I am Thy son, made with Thyself to shine, ' 

Thy servant, whose pains Thou hast still repaid, 

Thy sheep. Thine image, and — till I betray'd 

Myself— a temple of Thy Spirit divine. 


Why doth the devil then usurp on me ? 

Why doth he steal, nay ravish, that's Thy right ? lo 

Except Thou rise and for Thine own work fight^ 

O I I shall soon despair, when I shall see 

That Thou lovest mankind well, yet wilt not choose 

And Satan hates me, yet is loth to lose me. 


O ! might those sighs and tears return again 

Into my breast and eyes, which I have spent. 

That I might in this holy discontent 

Mourn with some fruit, as I have moum'd in vain. 

In mine idolatry what showers of rain 

Mine eyes did waste? what griefs my heart did rent ? 

That sufferance was my sin, I now repent ; 

'Cause I did suffer, I must suffer pain. 

Th' hydroptic drunkard, and night-scouting thief, 

The itchy lecher, and self-tickling proud lo 

Have the remembrance of past joys, for relief 

Of coming ills. To poor me is allowed 

No ease ; for long, yet vehement grief hath been 

Th' effect and cause, the punishment and sin. 


O, my black soul, now thou art summoned 
By sickness. Death's herald and champion ; 
Thou'rt like a pilgrim, which abroad hath done 

ii. 1. 12. So Z635 ; 1633, do see 


Treason, and durst not tarn to whence he's fled ; 

Or like a thief, which till death's doom be read, 

Wisheth himself deliver'd from prison. 

But damn'd and haled to execution, 

Wisheth that still he might be imprisoned. 

Yet grace, if thou repent, thou canst not lack ; 

But who shall give thee that grace to begin ? 10 

O, make th3rself with holy mourning black, 

And red with blushing, as thou art with sin ; 

Or wash thee in Christ's blood, which hath this 

That being red, it dyes red souls to white. 


I am a little world made cunningly 

Of elements, and an angelic sprite ; 

But black sin hath betray'd to endless night 

My world's both parts, and, O, both parts must die. 

You which beyond that heaven which was most high 

Have found new spheres, and of new land can write, 

Pour new seas in my eyes, that so I might 

Drown my world with my weeping earnestly, 

Or wash it if it must be drown'd no more. 

But, O, it must be burnt ; alas ! the fire zo 

Of lust and envy burnt it heretofore, 

And made it fouler ; let their flames retire, 

And bum me, O Lord, with a fiery zeal 

Of Thee and Thy house, which doth in eating heal. 

V. 1. 7. 1669, he might 



This is my play's last scene ; here heavens appoint 

My pilgrimage's last mile ; and my race 

Idly, yet quickly ran, hath this last pace ; 

My span's last inch, my minutes' latest point ; 

And gluttonous Death will instantly unjoint 

My body and soul, and I shall sleep a space ; 

But my ever-waking part shall see that face, 

Whose fear already shakes my every joint. 

Then, as my soul to heaven her first seat takes flight. 

And earth-bom body in the earth shall dwell, lo 

So £adl my sins, that all may have their right. 

To where they're bred and would press me to hell. 

Impute me righteous, thus purged of evil. 

For thus I leave the world, the flesh, the devil. 


At the round earth's imagined comers blow 

Your trampets, angels, and arise, arise 

From death, you numberless infinities 

Of souls, and to your scattered bodies go ; 

All whom the flood did, and fire shall o'erthrow, 

All whom war, death, age, agues, tyrannies. 

Despair, law, chance hath slain, and you, whose 

Shall behold God, and never taste death's woe. 

vi. 1. 6. So 163s ; 1633, and my soul 


But let them sleep, Lord, and me mourn a space ; 

For, if above all these my sins abound, lo 

'Tis late to ask abundance of Thy grace. 

When we are there. Here on this lowly ground. 

Teach me how to repent, for that's as good 

As if Thou hadst seal'd my pardon with Thy blood. 


If faithful souls be alike glorified 

As angels, then my father's soul doth see, 

And adds this even to full felicity. 

That valiantly I hell's wide mouth o'erstride. 

But if our minds to these souls be descried 

By circumstances, and by signs that be 

Apparent in us not immediately, 

liow shall my mind's white truth by them be 

They see idolatrous lovers weep and mourn. 
And stile blasphemous conjurers to call lo 

On Jesu's name, and pharisaical 
Dissemblers feign devotion. Then turn, 
O pensive soul, to God, for He knows best 
Thy grief, for He put it into my breast 

vii. L 14. 1669, my blood 

VOL. I. 1 1 



If poisonous minerals, and if that tree, 
Whose fruit threw death on (else immortal) us. 
If lecherous goats, if serpents envious 
Cannot be damn'd, alas ! why should I be ? 
Why should intent or reason, bom in me. 
Make sins, else equal, in me more heinous ? 
And, mercy being easy, and glorious 
To God, in His stem wrath why threatens He ? 
But who am I, that dare dispute with Thee ? 

God, O ! of Thine only worthy blood, lo 
And my tears, make a heavenly Lethean flood. 

And drown in it my sin's black memory. 

That Thou remember them, some claim as debt ; 

1 think it mercy if Thou wilt forget. 


Death, be not proud, though some have called thee 
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so ; 
For those, whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow. 
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me. 
From rest and sleep, which but thy picture be, 
Much pleasure, then from thee much more must flow. 
And soonest our best men with thee do go, 
Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery. 

ix. I z. So 1633, 1669 ; 1639, poisons 


Thou'rt slave to Fate, chance, kings, and desperate 

And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell, 10 
And poppy, or charms can make us sleep as well. 
And better than thy stroke; why swell'st thou 

One short sleep past, we wake eternally. 
And Death ^all be no more; Death, thou shalt 



Spit in my face, you Jews, and pierce my side. 

Buffet, and scoff, scourge, and crucify me. 

For I have sinn'd, and sinn*d, and only He, 

Who could do no iniquity, hath died. 

But by my death can not be satisfied 

My sins, which pass the Jews' impiety. 

They kill'd once an inglorious man, but I 

Crucify him daily, being now glorified. 

O let me then His strange love still admire ; 

Kings pardon, but He bore our punishment; 10 

And Jacob came clothed in vile harsh attire. 

But to supplant, and with gainful intent ; 

God clothed Himself in vile man's flesh, that so 

He might be weak enough to suffer woe. 

z. L zo. So 1635 : 1633, doik 



Why are we by all creatures waited on ? 

Why do the prodigal elements supply 

Life and food to me, being more pure than I, 

Simpler and further from corruption ? 

Why brook'st thou, ignorant horse, subjection ? 

Why dost thou, bull and boar, so sillily 

Dissemble weakness, and by one man's stroke die. 

Whose whole kind you might swallow and feed upon ? 

Weaker I am, woe's me, and worse than you ; 

You have not sinn'd, nor need be timorous. lo 

But wonder at a greater, for to us 

Created nature doth these things subdue ; 

But their Creator, whom sin, nor nature tied. 

For us, His creatures, and His foes, hath died. 


What if this present were the world's last night ? 
Mark in my heart, O soul, where thou dost dwell. 
The picture of Christ crucified, and tell 
Whether His countenance can thee affright. 
Tears in His eyes quench the amazing light ; 
Blood fills his frowns, which from His pierced head 

And can that tongue adjudge thee unto hell, 
Which pray'd forgiveness for His foes' fierce spite ? 

xil I iz. So 1635 ; 1633, wonder at a greater wonder 


No, no ; but as in my idolatry 

I said to all my profane mistresses, 10 

Beauty of pity, foulness only is 

A sign of rigour ; so I say to thee, 

To wicked spirits are horrid shapes assigned ; 

This beauteous form assumes a piteous miud« 


Batter my heart, three-person'd God ; for you 

As yet but knock ; breathe, shine, and seek to mend ; 

That I may rise, and stand, overthrow me, and bend 

Your force, to break, blow, bum, and make me new. 

I, like an usurped town, to another due, 

Labour to admit you, but O, to no end. 

Reason, your viceroy in me, me shotild defend. 

But is captived, and proves weak or untrue. 

Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain. 

But am betroth'd unto your enemy ; 10 

Divorce me, untie, or break that knot again. 

Take me to you, imprison roe, for I, 

Except you enthrall me, never shall be free, 

Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me. 


Wilt thou love God as He thee? then digest. 
My soul, this wholesome meditation. 
How God the Spirit, by angels waited on 
In heaven, doth make His temple in thy breast 

ziv. 1. 7. Z669, toe should 


The Father having begot a Son most blest. 
And still begetting — for he ne*er begun — 
Hath deign'd to choose thee by adoption, 
Co-heir to His glory, and Sabbath's endless rest. 
And as a robb'd man, which by search doth find 
His stolen stuff sold, must lose or buy it again, k> 
The Sun of glory came down, and was slain. 
Us whom He had made, and Satan stole, to unbind. 
'Twas much, that man was made like God before. 
But, that God should be made like man, much 


Father, part of His double interest 

Unto Thy kingdom Thy Son gives to me ; 

His jointure in the knotty Trinity 

He keeps, and gives to me his death's conquest 

This Lamb, whose death with life the world hath 

Was from the world's beginning slain, and He 
Hath made two wills, which with the legacy 
Of His and Thy kingdom do thy sons invest. 
Yet such are these laws, that men argue yet 
Whether a man those statutes can fulfil. lo 

None doth ; but thy all-healing grace and Spirit 
Revive again what law and letter kill. 
Thy law's abridgement, and Thy last command 
Is all but love ; O let this last Will stand ! 

XV. 1. 12. So 163s ; 1633, Satan stoTn 
xvl 1. 8. 1635 omits da 




Since Christ embraced the cross itself dare I 

His image, th^ image of His cross, deny ? 

Would I have profit by the sacrifice. 

And dare the chosen altar to despise ? 

It bore all other sins, but is it fit 

That it should bear the sin of scorning it ? 

Who from the picture would avert his eye. 

How would he fly his pains who there did die ? 

From me no pulpit, nor misgrounded law. 

Nor scandal taken, shall this cross withdraw, 10 

It shall not, for it cannot ; for the loss 

Of this cross were to me another cross. 

Better were worse, for no affliction. 

No cross is so extreme, as to have none. 

Who can blot out the cross, which th' instrument 

Of God dew'd on me in the Sacrament ? 

Who can deny me power, and liberty 

To stretch mine arms, and mine own cross to be ? 

Swim, and at every stroke thou art thy cross j 

The mast and yard make one, where seas do toss; 20 

Look down, thou spiest out crosses in small things ; 

Look up, thou seest birds raised on crossed wings ; 

All the globe's frame, and spheres, is nothing else 

But the meridians crossing parallels. 

Material crosses then good physic be. 

But yet spiritual have chief dignity. 

These for extracted chemic medicine serve, 

And core much better, and as well preserve. 


Then are you your own physic, or need none, 
When still'd or purged by tribulation ; 30 

For when that cross ungrudged unto you sticks, 
Then are you to yourself a crucifix. 
As perchance carvers do not faces make, 
But that away, which hid them there, do take ; 
Let crosses, so, take what hid Christ in thee, 
And be His image, or not II is, but He. 
But, as oft alchemists do coiners prove. 
So may a self-despising get self-love ; 
And then, as worst surfeits of best meats be, 
So is pride, issued from humility, 40 

For 'tis no child, but monster ; therefore cross 
Your joy in crosses, else 'tis double loss. 
And cross thy senses, else both they and thou 
^Tust perish soon, and to destruction bow. 
For if the eye seek good objects, and will take 
No cross from bad, we cannot 'scape a snake. 
So with harsh, hard, sour, stinking ; cross the rest ; 
Make them indifferent ; call, nothing best 
But most the eye needs crossing, that can roam. 
And move ; to th* others th' objects must come 
home. 50 

And cross thy heart ; for that in man alone 
Pants downwards, and hath palpitation. 
Cross those dejections, when it downward tends, 
And when it to forbidden heights pretends. 

1. 45. 1650, see L 48. 1635, all, nothing best 

1. 50. 1635, To th' others objects 
L 53. 1635, detorsions 


And as the brain through bony walls doth vent 

By sutures, which a cross's form present, 

So when thy brain works, ere thou utter it, 

Cross and correct concupiscence of wit. 

Be covetous of crosses ; let none fall ; 

Cross no man else, but cross thyself in all. 60 

Then doth the cross of Christ work faithfully 

Within our hearts, when we love harmlessly 

The cross's pictures much, and with more care 

That cross's children, which our crosses are. 


Sleep, sleep, old sun, thou canst not have repass'd. 

As yet, the wound thou took'st on Friday last ; 

Sleep then, and rest ; the world may bear thy stay ; 

A better sun rose before thee to-day ; 

Who — not content to enlighten all that dwell 

On the earth's face, as thou — enlighten'd hell, 

And made the dark fires languish in that vale. 

As at thy presence here our fires grow pale ; 

Whose body, having walk'd on earth, and now 

Hasting to heaven, would — that He might allow 10 

Himself unto all stations, and fill all — 

For these three days become a mineral. 

He was all gold when He lay down, but rose 

All tincture, and doth not alone dispose 

Leaden and iron wills to good, but is 

Of power to make e'en sinful flesh like his. 

1. 15. Query, to gold 


Had one of those, whose credalous piety 

Thought that a sool one might discern and see 

Go from a body, at this septdchre been, 

And, issuing from the sheet, this body seen, 20 

He would have justly thought this body a soul, 

If not of any man, yet of the whole. 

Desunt Catttra* 

Tamely, frail body, abstain to-day ; to-day 

My soul eats twice, Christ hither and away. 

She sees Him man, so like God made in this. 

That of them both a circle Emblem is, 

Whose first and last concur ; this doubtftd day 

Offcast or fast, Christ came, and went away ; 

She sees Him nothing, twice at once, who's all ; 

She sees a cedar plant itself, and fall ; 

Her Maker put to making, and the head 

Of life at once not yet alive, yet dead ; xo 

She sees at once the Virgin Mother stay 

Reclused at home, public at Golgotha ; 

Sad and rejoiced she's seen at once, and seen 

At almost fifty, and at scarce fifteen ; 

At once a son is promised her, and gone ; 

Gabriel gives Christ to her. He her to John ; 

Not fully a mother, she's in orbity ; 

At once receiver and the legacy. 

L I. 1635, /rtff7^«A 

L I. 1650 omits the second to-day 

L zo. 1635, and dead 


All this, and all between, this day hath shown, 

Th* abridgement of Christ's story, which makes one — 

As in plain maps, the furthest west is east — 21 

Of th' angels ^z/^, and Consummatum est. 

How well the Church, God's Court of Faculties, 

Deals, in sometimes, and seldom joining these. 

As by the self-fix'd Pole we never do 

Direct our course, but the next star thereto, 

Which shows where th'other is, and which we say 

— Because it strays not far — doth never stray. 

So God by His Church, nearest to him, we know. 

And stand firm, if we by her motion go. 30 

His Spirit, as His fiery pillar, doth 

Lead, and His Church, as cloud ; to one end both. 

This Church by letting those dajrs join, hath shown 

Death and conception in mankind is one ; 

Or 'twas in Him the same humility. 

That He wotdd be a man, and leave to be ; 

Or as creation He hath made, as God, 

With the last judgment but one period. 

His imitating spouse would join in one 

Manhood's extremes ; He shall come, He is gone ; 40 

Or as though one blood drop, which thence did £Edl, 

Accepted, would have served. He yet shed all. 

So though the least of His pains, deeds, or words. 

Would busy a life, she all this day affords. 

This treasure then, in gross, my soul, uplay. 

And in my life retail it every day. 

L 31. 163s, and His fiery pillar 
L 33. 1635, those feasts 1. 34. 1635, are one 



Let man's soul be a sphere, and then, in this, 
TW intelligence that moves, devotion is ; 
And as the other spheres, by being grown 
Subject to foreign motion, lose their own. 
And being by others hurried every day. 
Scarce in a year their natural form obey ; 
Pleasure or business, so, our souls admit 
For their first mover, and are whirled by it. 
Hence is't, that I am carried towards the west, 
This day, when my soul's form bends to the East 10 
There I should see a Sun by rising set, 
And by that setting endless day beget. 
But that Christ on His cross did rise and fall. 
Sin had eternally benighted alL 
Yet dare I almost be glad, I do not see 
That spectacle of too much weight for me. 
Who sees God*s face, that is self-life, must die ; 
What a death were it then to see God die ? 
It made His own lieutenant. Nature, shrink. 
It made His footstool crack, and the sun wink. 20 
Could I behold those hands, which span the poles 
And tune all spheres at once, pierced with those 
holes ? 

L lo. So 1635 ; 1633, towards the East 
L 13. So 163s ; 1633, this cross 


Could I behold that endless height, which is 
Zenith to us and our antipodes, 
Humbled below us ? or that blood, which is 
The seat of all our sotds, if not of His, 
Made dirt of dust, or that flesh which was worn 
By God for His apparel, ragg'd and torn ? 
If on these things I durst not look, durst I 
On His distressed Mother cast mine eye, 30 

Who was God's partner here, and fumish*d thus 
Half of that sacrifice which ransomed us ? 
Though these things as I tide be from mine eye, 
They're present yet unto my memory. 
For that looks towards them ; and Thou look'st 
towards me, 

Saviour, as Thou hang'st upon the tree. 

1 turn my back to Thee but to receive 
Corrections till Thy mercies bid Thee leave. 
O think me worth Thine anger, punish me, 

Bum off my rust, and my deformity ; 40 

Restore Thine image, so much, by Thy grace, 
That Thou mayst know me, and I'll turn my face. 

L 30. So 1635 ; 1633, Upon his miserable mother 
L 40. So 1635 ; 1633, rusts 




Father of Heayen, and Him, by whom 
It, and us for it, and all else for us, 

Thou madest and govem'st ever, come 
And re-create me, now grown ruinous. 
My heart is by dejection, clay. 
And by self-murder, red. 
From this red earth, O Father, purge away 
All vicious tinctures, that new-fashioned 
I may rise up from death, before I*m dead. 


the son. 

O Son of God, who, seeing two things, lo 

Sin and Death, crept in, which were never made. 

By bearing one, tried'st with what stings 
The other could Thine heritage invade ; 
O be Thou nail'd unto my heart. 
And crucified again ; 
Part not from it, though it from Thee would part. 
But let it be by applying so Thy pain, 
Drown'd in Thy blood, and in^hy passion slain. 




O Holy Ghost, whose temple I 
Am, but of mud walls, and condensM dust, 20 

And being sacril^ously 
Half wasted with youth's fires of pride and lust. 
Must with new storms be weather-beat. 
Double in my heart Thy flame, 
Which let devout sad tears intend, and let — 
Though this glass lanthom, flesh, do suffer maim — 
Fire, sacrifice, priest, altar be the same. 


O blessed glorious Trinity, 
Bones to philosophy, but milk to faith, 

Which, as wise serpents, diversely 30 

Most slipperiness, yet most entanglings hath, 
As you distinguished, undistinct, 
By power, love, knowledge be, 
Give me a such self different instinct, 
Of these let all me elemented be. 
Of power, to love, to know you unnumbered three. 

1. 34. 1635, omits a 



For that fair blessed mother-maid, 
Whose flesh redeem'd us, that she-chenibin, 

Which milock'd paradise, and made 
One claim for innocence, and disseizM sin, 40 

Whose womb was a strange heaven, for there 
God clothed Himself, and grew. 
Our zealous thanks we pour. As her deeds were 
Our helps, so are her prayers ; nor can she sue 
In vain, who hath such titles unto you. 



And since this life our nonage is, 
And^we in wardship to Thine angels be. 

Native in heaven's fair palaces 
Where we shall be but denizen'd by Thee ; 

As th* earth conceiving by the sun, 50 

Yields fair diversity. 
Yet never knows what course that light doth run ; 
So let me study that mine actions be 
Worthy their sight, though blind in how they see. 



And let Thy patriarchs' desire, 
— Those great grandfathers of Thy Church, which saw 

More in the cloud than we in fire, 
Whom nature dear'd more, than us grace and law, 
And now in heaven still pray, that we 
May use our new helps right— 60 

Be satisfied, and fructify in me ; 
Let not my mind be blinder by more light, 
Nor faith by reason added lose her sight. 


Thy eagle-sighted prophets too, 
— Which were Thy Church's oxgans, and did sound 

That harmony which made of two 
One law, and did unite, but not confound ; 
Those heayenly poets which did see 
Thy will, and it express 
In rhythmic feet — ^in common pray for me, 70 

That I by them excuse not my excess 
In seeking secrets, or poeticness. 

1. 61. So 1635 ; 1633, Bi sanctijitd 
VOL.L 12 




And thy illastrioas zodiac 
Of twelve apostles, which engirt this All, 
— FromVhom whosoever do not take 
Their light, to dark deep pits throw down and &11 ; — 
As through their prayers Thou'st let me know 
That their books are divine. 
May they pray still, and be heard, that I go 
Th' old broad way in applying ; O decline 80 

Me, when my comment would make Thy word mine. 


And since Thou so desirously 
Didst long to die, that long before Thou couldst* 

And long since Thou no more couldst die^ • 
Thou in thy scatter'd mystic body wouldst 
In Abel die, and ever since 
In Thine ; let their blood come 
To beg for us a discreet patience 
Of death, or of worse life ; forO, to some 
Not to be martyrs, is a martyrdom. ^q 

L 76. 1635, thrown dawn do fall 



Therefore with Thee triumpheth there 
A virgin squadron of white confessors, 

Whose bloods betroth'd not married were, 
Tendered, not taken by those ravishers. 

They know, and pray that we may know. 
In every Christian 
Hourly tempestuous persecutions grow ; 
Temptations martyr us alive ; a man 
Is to himself a Diocletian. 



The cold white snowy nunnery, lOO 

Which, as Thy Mother, their high abbess, sent 

Their bodies back again to Thee, 
As Thou hadst lent them, clean and innocent ; 

Though they have not obtained of Thee, 
That or Thy Church or I 
Should keep, as they, our first int^;rity. 
Divorce Thou sin in us, or bid it die. 
And call chaste ¥ridowhead virginity. 

i8o J>ONN£:S POEMS. 


The sacred academy above 
Of doctors, whose paios have undasp'd, and 
tanght I lo 

Both books of life to us — for lore 
To know Thy scriptures tells us, we are wrote 
In Thy other book — pray for us there. 
That what they have misdone 
Or missaidf we to that may not adhere. 
Their zeal may be our sin. Lord, let us run 
Mean ways, and call them stars, but not the sun. 


And whilst this uniyersal quire. 
That Church in triumph, this in warfare here, 

WarmM with one all-partaking fire 120 

Of love, that none be lost, which cost Thee dear. 
Prays ceaselessly, and Thou hearken too 
^-Since to be gracious 
Our task is treble, to pray, bear, and do«- 
Hear this prayer. Lord ; Lord, deliver us 
From trusting in those prayers, though ponr'd out 

L 109. 1635, acadim 



From being aiudoiis, or secure. 
Dead dods of sadness, or light sqnibs of mirth. 

From thinking that great courts immure 
All, or no happiness, or that this earth I jo 

Is only for our prison framed. 
Or that Thou*rt covetous 
To them whom Thou lovest, or that they are maim'd 
From reaching this world's sweet who seek Thee 

With all their might, good Lord, deliver us. 


From needing danger, to be good. 
From owing Thee yesterday's tears to-day. 

From trusting so much to Thy blood 
That in that hope we wound our soul away. 

From bribing Thee with alms, to excuse 140 
Some sin more bnrdenous. 
From light affecting, in religion, news, 
From thinking us all soul, n^lecting thus 
Our mutual duties. Lord, deliver us. 

L 128. 1635, cUmds 1. 134, 1635, sweefs 

L 137. 1669, anmimg L 139^ 1669, souls 



From tempting Satan to tempt us, 
By our connivance, or slack company, 

From measuring ill by vicious 
Neglecting to choke sin's spawn, vanity, 
From indiscreet humility, 
Which might be scandalous 150 

And cast reproach on Ciiristianity, 
From being spies, or to spies pervious, 
From thirst or scorn of fame, deliver us. 


Deliver us through Thy descent 
Into the Virgin, whose womb was a place 

Of middle kind ; and Thou being sent 
To ungracious us, stay'dst at her full of grace ; 

And through Thy poor birth, where first Thou 
Glorified'st poverty ; 
And yet soon after riches didst allow, 160 

By accepting kings' gifts in th' Epiphany ; 
Deliver us, and make us to both wajrs free. 

L 153. So 1635; i6^t flarm 



And through that bitter agony, 
Which is still th' agony of pious wits, 

Disputing what distorted Thee, 
And interrupted evenness with fits ; 

And through Thy free confession, 
Though thereby they were then 
Made blind, so that Thou mightst firom them have gone ; 
Good Lord, deliver us, and teach us when 170 

We may not, and we may, blind unjust men. 


Through Thy submitting all, to blows 
Thy face, Thy robes to spoil. Thy feme to scorn. 

All ways, which rage, or justice knows. 
And by which Thou couldst show that Thou wast 
bom ; 

And through Thy gallant humbleness 
Which Thou in death didst show. 
Dying before Thy soul they could express ; 
Deliver us fix)m death, by dying so 
To this world, ere this world do bid us go. 180 

L 164. 1635, still is 



When senses, which Thy soldiers are, 
We arm against Thee, and they fight for sin ; 

When want, sent bat to tame, doth war, 
And work despair a breach to enter in ; 

When plenty, God's image, and seal. 
Makes us idolatrous, 
And love it, not him, whom it should reveal ; 
When we are moved to seem religious 
Only to vent wit ; Lord, deliver us. 


In churches, when th' infirmity 190 

Of him which speaks, diminishes the word ; 

When magistrates do misapply 
To us, as we judge, lay or ghostly sword ; 

When plague, which is Thine angel, 

Or wars, Thy champions, sway ; 
When heresy. Thy second deluge, gains ; 
In th' hour of death, th' eve of last Judgment day ; 
Deliver us from the sinister way. 



Hear us, O hear ns, Lord ; to Thee 
A sinner is more music, when he prays, 200 

Than spheres' or angels' praises be, 
In panegyric alleluias ; 

Hear us, for till Thou hear us, Lord, 
We know not what to say ; 
Thine ear to our sighs, tears, thoughts, gives Toice 

and word ; 
O Thou, who Satan heard'st in Job's sick day, 
Hear Thyself now, for Thou in us dost pray. 


That we may change to evenness 
This intermitting aguish piety ; 

That snatching cramps of wickedness aio 

And apoplexies of fast sin may die ; 

That music of Thy promises. 
Not threats in thunder may 
Awaken us to our just offices ; 
What in Thy book Thou dost, or creatures say, 
That we may hear. Lord, hear us when we pray. 



That onr ears' sickness we may core. 
And rectify those labjrrinths aright, 

That we by heark'ning not procure 
Our praise, nor others' dispraise so invite ; 220 

That we get not a slipp'riness 
And senselessly decline, 
From hearing bold wits jest at kings' excess. 
To admit the like of majesty divine ; 
That we may lock our ears, Liord, open Thine. 


That living law, the magistrate^ 
Which to give us, and make us physic, doth 

Our vices often aggravate ; 
That preachers taxing sin, before her growth ; 
That Satan, and envenom'd men — 
"Which will, if we starve, dine — 
"When they do most accuse us, may see then 
Us to amendment hear them. Thee decline ; 
That we may open our ears, Lord, lock Thine. 

I. 217. 1635, m€ may cun 



That learning, Thine ambassador. 
From Thine allegiance we nerer tempt ; 

That beauty, paradise's flower 
For physic made, from poison be exempt ; 

That wit — bom apt high good to do— 
By dwelling lazily 240 

On nature's nothing be not nothing too ; 
That our affections kill us not, nor die ; 
Hear us, weak echoes, O, Thou Ear and Eye. 


Son of God, hear us, and since Thou 
By taking our blood, owest it us again. 

Gain to Thyself, and as allow ; 
And let not both us and Thyself be slain ; 

O Lamb of God, which took'st our sin. 
Which could not stick to Thee, 
O let it not return to us again ; 250 

But patient and physician being free, 
As sin is nothing, let it nowhere be. 

L 243. So St. MS. : Z633, and cry 



Eternal God — for whom who eyer dare 

Seek new expressions, do the circle square. 

And thrust into straight comers of poor wit 

Thee, who art comerless and infinite — 

I would but bless Thy name, not name Tliee now 

— And Thy gifts are as infinite as Thou— 

Fix we oar praises therefore on this one. 

That, as thy blessed Spirit fell upon 

These Psalms' first author in a cloven tongiie 

— For 'twas a double power by which he stmg lo 

The highest matter in the noblest form — 

So Thou hast cleft that Spirit, to perform 

That work again, and shed it here, upon 

Two, by their bloods, and by Thy Spirit one ; 

A brother and a sister, made by Thee 

The organ, where Thou art the harmony. 

Two that make one John Baptist's holy voice, 

And who that Psalm, *' Now let the Isles rejoice^'' 

Have both translated, and applied it too, 

Both told us what, and taught us how to do. 20 

They show us islanders our Joy, our King ; 

They tell us why, and teach us how to sing. 

Make all this all three choirs, heaven, earth, and 

spheres ; 
The first, Heaven, hath a song, but no man hears ; 


The spheres have music, bat they have no tongue, 

Their harmony is rather danced than sung ; 

But our third choir, to which the first gives ear 

— For angels learn by what the Church does here — 

This choir hath all. The organist is he 

Who hath tuned, God and man, the organ we ; 30 

The songs are these, which heaven's high holy 

Whisper'd to David, David to the Jews ; 
And David's successors in holy zeal, 
In forms of joy and art do re-reveal 
To us so sweetly and sincerely too, 
That I must not rejoice as I would do. 
When I behold that these Psalms are become 
So well attired abroad, so ill at home, 
So well in chambers, in Thy Church so ill, 
As I can scarce call that reform'd until 40 

This be reformed ; would a whole state present 
A lesser gift than some one man hath sent ? 
And shall our Church unto our Spouse and King 
More hoarse, more harsh than any other, sing ? 
For that we pray, we praise Thy name for this, 
Which, by this Moses and this Miriam, is 
Already done ; and as those Psalms we call, 
— Though some have other authors — David's all. 
So though some have, some may some Psalms 

We Thy Sidneian psalms shall celebrate, 50 

L 28. So 1669 : 1635, does hear 

L 46. So Dr. Grosart ; 1635, thy Moses 


Andt till we come th' extemponl song to sing 
— Learn'd the first hour that we see the King, 
Who hath translated those translators — vaxf 
These their sweet learned labours all the waj 
Be as our tuning, that when hence we part. 
We may iiedl in with them, and sing our part I 


1. Vbngeance will sit above our faults ; but till 

She there do sit, 
We see her not, nor them. Thus, blind, yet still 
We lead her way ; and thus, whilst we do ill. 

We suffer it 

2. Unhappy he whom youth makes not beware 

Of doing ill. 
Enough we labour under age, and care ; 
In number, th' errors of the last place are 

The greatest stilL lo 

3. Yet we, that should the ill we now begin 

As soon repent. 
Strange thing 1 perceive not ; our faults are not 

But past us ; neither felt, but only in 

The punishment. 

I. a. So 1650 : 1635, doth 


4. But we know ourselves least; mere outward 


Our minds so store, 
That our souls no more than our eyes disclose 
But form and colour. Only he who knows 

Himself, knows more. 20 


Thou, whose diviner soul hath caused thee now 

To put thy hand unto the holy plough* 

Making lay-scomings of the ministry 

Not an impediment, but victory ; 

What bring'st thou home with thee? how is thy mind 

Affected since the vintage ? Dost thou find 

New thoughts and stirrings in thee ? and, as steel 

Touch'd with a loadstone, dost new motions feel ? 

Or, as a ship after much pain and care 

For iron and cloth brings home rich Indian ware, 10 

Hast thou thus traffick'd, but with fisur more gain 

Of noble goods, and with less time and pain ? 

Thou art the same materials, as before. 

Only the stamp is changed, but no more. 

And as new crowned kings alter the face, 

But not the money's substance, so hath grace 

Changed only God's old image by creation. 

To Christ's new stamp, at this thy coronation ; 

Or, as we paint angels with wings, because 

They bear God's message and proclaim His laws, 20 

193 D0NNB:S POEBiS. 

Since thon must do the like and so most move^ 

Art thon new feather'd with celestial love ? 

Dear, tell me where thy porchase lies, and show 

What thy advantage is above, below. 

Bat if thy gainings do sormoont ex p ression. 

Why doth the foolish world scorn that profession. 

Whose joys pass speech ? Why do they think unfit 

That gentry should join families with it ? 

As if their day were only to be spent 

In dressing, mistressing and compliment. 30 

Alas ! poor joys, but poorer men, whose trust 

Seems richly placH in sublimM dust, 

—For such are clothes and beauty, wluch though 


Are, at the best, but of snblimM day- 
Let then the world thy calling disrespect. 
But go thou on, and pity their neglect. 
What function is so noble, as to be 
Ambassador to God, and destiny ? 
To open life ? to give kingdoms to more 
Than kings give dignities ? to keep heaven's door ? 40 
Mary's prerogative wa3 to bear Christ, so 
'Tis preachers* to convey Him, for they do. 
As angels out of clouds, from pulpits speak ; 
And bless the poor beneath, the lame, the weak. 
If then th' astronomers, whereas they spy 
A new-found star, their optics magnify. 
How brave are those, who with their engine can 
Bring man to heaven, and heaven again to man ? 
These are thy titles and pre-eminences. 
In whom must meet God's graces, men's offences ; 50 


And so the heftveni which beget all things here, 
And th' earthy our mother, which these things doth 

Both these in thee, are in thy calling knit 
And make thee now a blest hermaphrodite* 


In what torn ship so ever I embark. 
That ship shall be my emblem of Thy ark ; 
What sea soever swallow me, that flood 
Shall be to me an emblem of Thy blood ; 
Though Thou with clouds of anger do disguise 
Thy face, yet through that mask I know those eyes, 
Which, though they turn away sometimes. 
They never will despise. 

I sacrifice this island unto Thee, 
And all whom I love there, and who love me ; 10 
When I have put our seas 'twixt them and me, 
Put thou Thy seas betwixt my sins and Thee. 
As the tree's sap doth seek the root below 
In winter, in my winter now I go. 
Where none but Thee, the eternal root 
Of true love, I may know. 

L xo. X635, hir€ 1. xx. X635, ihisjlood 

I X3. X63S, Thy hhod 
VOL. I. 13 


Nor Thoa nor Thy religum dott control 
The amonmsnest of an haimonions aool ; 
But Thou wouldst have that loye Thyself; as Thou 
Art jealous, Lord, so I am jealous now ; 20 

Thou lovest not, till from loving more Thou free 
My soul ; Who ever gives, takes liberty ; 
Oh, if Thou carest not whom I love, 
Alas 1 Thou lovest not me. 

Seal then this bill of my divorce to all. 
On whom those fainter beams of love did fall ; 
Marry those loves, which in youth scatter'd be 
On fame, wit, hopes — felse mistresses — to Thee. 
Churches are best for prayer, that have least light ; 
To see God only, I go out of sight ; 30 

And to escape stormy days, I choose 
An everlasting night 



I. How sits this city, late most populous. 
Thus solitary, and like a widow thus ? 
Amplest of nations, queen of provinces 
She was, who now thus tributary is ? 

L 28. 1635, y&^« 


3. Still in the night she weeps, and her tears fall 
Down by her cheeks along, and none of all 
Her lovers comfort her ; perfidiously 
Her friends have dealt, and now are enemy. 

3. Unto great bondage, and afflictions, 

Judah is captive led ; those nations 10 

With whom she dwells, no place of rest afford ; 
In straits she meets her persecutors' sword. 

4. Empty are the gates of Sion, and her ways 
Mourn, because none come to her solemn days. 
Her priests do groan, her maids are comfortless ; 
And she's unto herself a bitterness. 

5. Her foes are grown her head, and live at peace. 
Because, when her transgressions did increase. 
The Lord strook her with sadness ; the enemy 
Doth drive her children to captivity. 20 

6. From Sion*s daughter is all beauty gone ; 
Like harts which seek for pasture, and find 

Her princes are ; and now before the foe 
Which still pursues them, without strength they 


7. Now in their days of tears, Jerusalem 

—Her men slain by the foe, none succouring them — 
Remembers what of old she esteemed most. 
Whiles her foes laugh at her, for what she hath 


8. Jernsilem hath sinn'd, therefore is she 
RemoYed, as women in ondeanness be ; 30 
Who honour'd, scorn her, for her foulness they 
HaTe seen ; herself doth groan, and turn away. 

9. Her foulness in her skirts was seen, yet she 
Remembered not her end ; miracolously 
Therefore she fell, none comforting ; behold, 
O Lord, my affliction, for the foe grows bold. 

10. Upon all things where her delight hath been. 
The foe hath stretch'd his hand, for she hath seen 
Heathen, whom thou command'st should not do 

Into her holy sanctuary go. 40 

1 1 . And all her people groan, and seek for bread ; 
And they have given, only to be fed. 

All precious things, wherein their pleasure lay ; 
How cheap I'm grown, O Lord, behold, and 

12. AH this concerns not yon, who pass by me ; 
O see, and mark if any sorrow be 

Like to my sorrow, which Jehovah hath 
Done to me in the day of His fierce wrath? 

13. That fire, which by Himself is governed. 

He hath cast firom heaven on my bones, and 
spread 50 

A net before my feet, and me o'erthrown, 
And made me languish all the day alone. 


14. His hand hath of my sini framM a yoke 
Which wreathed, and cast upon my neck, hath 

My strength ; the Lord unto those enemies 
Hath given me, from whom I cannot rise. 

15. He under foot hath trodden in my sight 
My strong men ; He did company accite 

To break my young men ; He the winepress hath 
Trod upon Judah*s daughter in His wrath. 60 

16. For these things do I weep ; mine eye, mine eye 
Casts water out ; for He which should be nigh 
To comfort me, is now departed far ; 

The foe prevails, forlorn my children are. 

17. There's none, though Sion do stretch out her 

To comfort her ; it is the Lord's command 
That Jacob's foes girt him ; Jerusalem 
Is as an unclean woman amongst them. 

18. But yet the Lord is just, and righteous still ; 

I have rebeird against His holy will ; 70 

O hear all people, and my sorrow see, 
My maids, my young men in captivity* 

19. 1 called for my lovers then, but they 

Deceived me, and my priests, and elders lay 
Dead in the city ; for they sought for meat 
Which should refresh their soulsi and none could 



2a Because I am in straits, Jehovah, see ! 
My heart o'ertum'd, my bowels maddy be ; 
Because I have rebelled so much, as fiist 79 

The sword without, as death within, doth waste. 

21. Of all which here I mourn, none comforts me ; 
My foes have heard my grief, and glad tliej be. 
That Thou hast done it ; but Thy promised day 
Will come, when, as I suffer, so shall they. 

22. Let all their wickedness appear to Thee ; 
Do unto them, as Thou hast done to me. 
For all my sins ; the sighs which I have had 
Are very many, and my heart is sad. 


1. How over Sion*s daughter hath God hung 

His wrath's thick cloud ? and from heaven hath 
flung 90 

To earth the beauty of Israel, and hath 
Forgot His foot-stool in the day of wrath? 

2. The Lord unsparingly hath swallowed 
All Jacob's dwellings, and demolished 

To ground the strength of Judah, and profaned 
The Princes of the kingdom, and the land. 

3. In heat of wrath the horn of Israel He 
Hath clean cut off, and lest the enemy 

Be hinder'd. His right hand He doth retire. 

But is towards Jacob all-devouring fire. 100 


4. Like to an enemy He bent His bow ; 
His right hand was in posture of a foe^ 
To kill what Sion's daughter did desire, 
'Gainst whom His wrath He poured forth like 


5. For like an enemy Jehovah is, 
Devouring Israel, and his palaces, 
Destro3ring holds, giving additions 
To Judah's daughters' lamentations. 

6. Like to a garden hedge He hath cast down 

The place where was His congregation, 1 10 

And Sion's feasts and sabbaths are forgot ; 
Her King, her Priest, His wrath regardeth not. 

7. The Lord forsakes His altar, and detests 
His sanctuary, and in the foes' hands rests 
His palace, and the walls, in which their cries 
Are heard, as in the true solemnities. 

8. The Lord hath cast a line, so to confound 
And level Sion's walls unto the ground ; 

He draws not back His hand, which doth o'ertum 
The wall, and rampart, which together mourn. 120 

9. Their gates are sunk into the ground, and He 
Hath broke the bar ; their king and princes be 
Amongst the heathen, without law, nor there 
Unto their prophets doth the Lord appear. 

1. zai. 1635, Tfu 


la There Skm's elden on tbe groniid are placed. 
And silence keep ; dost on their heads they cast ; 
In sackcloth have they girt themselves, and low 
The Tiigins towards ground their bends do tiirow. 

11. My bowels are grown muddy, and mine eyes 

Are £unt with weeping ; and my li^er lies 130 
Poured out upon the ground, for misery 
That sucking children in the streets do die. 

12. When they had cried unto their mothers, " Where 
Shall we have bread, and drink?" they tainted 

And in the street like wounded persons lay. 
Till 'twixt their mothers' breasts they went away. 

13. Daughter Jerusalem, O what may be 
A witness, or comparison for thee? 

Sion, to ease thee, what shall I name like thee ? 
Thy breach is like the sea ; what help can be ? 140 

14. For thee vain foolish things thy prophets sought ; 
Thee, thine iniquities they hare not taught. 
Which might disturb thy bondage ; but for thee 
False burthens, and 6dse causes they would see. 

15. The passengers do clap their hands, and hiss 
And wag their head at thee, and say, " Is this 
That city, which so many men did call 

Joy of the earth, and perfectest of all ? " 


i6, Thy Um do gape upon tbM^ and they biff, 
And piuh tbftir Uttb, Md Mf, ^'Dtroor w« 
tbU, 150 

For thU U etrtetnlr tb« d*y wblch wt 
Expectedi and which now wa tnA, And«4e." 

17. Tho Lord hath done that which Ho purpodbd i 
FuiaU'd HU word of olddotarmin^ I 

Ut hath thrown down, and not fparad, and thy 


Mado glad abova thea, and advancad him 10, 

18. But now thalr heartf unto tba Lord do call 1 
Thare(ore, O walU of Sion, lat taan (ail 
Down Ilka a rlveri day and night \ taka tbaa 

No re«t, but let thlna ty^ Incattant ba, 160 

19. Arifa, cry In tba night, pour out tbyilnf, 
Thy haart, Ilka water, whan tba wateb bagim 1 
Lift up thy handi to God, leit children die, 
Which, faint for hunger. In the itreetf do lie. 

80. Behold, O Lord, eoniider unto whom 

Thou bait done tbU { what, fball the women come 
To eat their children of a ipan ? fball Thy 
Prophet and prieet be slain in lanctuary } 

21. On ground in street! the young and old do lla 1 
My virgina and young men by sword do die \ 170 
Them in the day of Thy wrath Thou haet slain \ 
Nothing did Tbaa from killing tbam contain. 


22. As to a solemn feast, all whom I fear'd 

Thoa caU*st about me ; when Thy wrath appear'd, 
None did remain or scape, for those which I 
Brought up, did perish by mine enemy. 

CHAP. in. 

1. 1 AM the man which have affliction seen. 
Under the rod of God's wrath having been ; 

2. He hath led me to darkness, not to light, 

3. And against me all day, His hand doth fight 180 

4. He hath broke my bones, worn out my flesh and 


5. Built up agunst me ; and hath girt me in 

With hemlock, and with labour ; 6. And set me 
In dark, as they who dead for ever be. 

7. He hath hedged me lest I 'scape, and added more 
To my steel fetters heavier than before. 

8. When I cry out He outshuts my prayer ; 9. And 

Stopp'd with hewn stone my way, and tnm'd my 

10. And like a lion hid in secrecy, 

Or bear which lies in wait. He was to me. 190 

1 1. He stops my way, tears me, made desolate ; 

12. And He makes me the mark He shooteth at. 


13. He made the children of His quiver pass 
Into my reins. 14. I, with my people, was 
All the day long, a song and .mockery. 

15. He hath filled me with bitterness, and He 

Hath made me drunk with wormwood. 16. He 

hath burst 
My teeth with stones, and cover'd me with dust 

17. And thus my soul far off from peace was set, 
And my prosperity I did forget 200 

18. My strength, my hope — ^unto myself I said — 
Which from the Lord should come, is perished ; 

19. But when my mournings I do think upon, 
My wormwood, hemlock, and affliction, 

20. My soul is humbled in remembering this ; 

21. My heart considers, therefore, hope there is. 

22. *Tis God's great mercy we're not utterly 
Consumed, for His compassions do not die ; 

23. For every morning they renewed be. 

For great, O Lord, is Thy fidelity. 210 

24. The Lord is — saith my soul — my portion. 
And therefore in Him will I hope alone. 

25. The Lord is good to them, who on Him rely. 
And to the soul that seeks Him earnestly. 

26. It is both good to trust, and to attend 
The Lord's salvation unto the end. 


27. *Tis good for one His ]roke in youth to bemr. 
2S. He sits alone, and doth all speech forbear. 

Because he hath borne it 29. And his month 
he lays 

Deep in the dust, yet then in hope he stays. 220 

50. He gives his cheeks to whosoever will 
Strike him, and so he is reproached stilL 

31. For not for ever doth the Lord forsake ; 

32. But when He hath struck with sadness, He doth 


Compassion, as His mercy 's infinite ; 

33. Nor is it with Hb heart, that He doth smite^ 

34. That underfoot the prisoners stamped be, 

35. That a man's right the judge himself doth see 

To be wrung from him ; 36. That he subverted is 
In his just cause, the Lord allows not this. 230 

37. Who then will say, that aught doth come to pass, 
But that which by the Lord commanded was? 

38. Both good and evil from His month proceeds ; 

39. Why then grieves any man for his misdeeds ? 
4a Turn we to God, by trying out our wajrs ; 

41. To Him in heav'n our hands with hearts upraise. 


42. We have rebelled, and fallen away from Thee ; 
Thou pardon'st not ; 43. Usest no clemency ; 
Pursuest us, kill'st us, cover'st us with wrath ; 

44. Cover*st Thyself with clouds, that our prayer 
hath 240 


Ko power to fOii* 45. And Thon l)«t madeatfikU 
At fefbs^ and oft-tcoanng to tliem all. 
46, All ottr ioet gape at of* 47. Fear and a snare 
With nan, and wtth watte apon m are. 

4S. With watery riiren doth mine eye overflow 

For rain of my peoi>le'f danghtert to ; 
49u Mine eye doth drop down tean ince< ea nt ly» 

50, Until the Lord look down frcn heair' a to tec. 

51, And for my city das|^ktert' take, mine eye 
Doth hreak mine heart. $2, Ca nee l ei e mine 

enemy 250 

Like a bird chased me. 53. In a dongeon 
They've shot my life, and cast me 00 a stone. 

54. Waten flowed o'er my head ; then thought I, I am 
Destroyed ; 55, 1 called, Lord, npon Thy name 
Oatofthepit; 5& And Thoa my Tolee didst hear; 
O from my sigh and cry, stop not Thine ear. 

57, Then when I call'd i^on Thee, Thoa drew'sc 

Unto me, and said'st mito me, '' I>o not £ear.'' 
5S, Thoa, Lordy my soaTs canse handled hast, tod 

Rescneet my lile. 59. O Lord, do Tho«j«dge 

now. a^ 

L 9S^, i6$», m/ Hgki 


Thoa heardst my wrong, 60. Their Tengeance^ all 
thcy'TC wrought ; 

61. How they reproach'd, Thou'st heard, and what 

they thought ; 

62. What their lips utter'd, which against me rose, 
And what was ever whisper'd by my foes. 

63. 1 am their song, whether they rise or sit ; 

64. Give them rewards, Lord, for their working fit, 

65. Sorrow of heart. Thy curse ; 66. And with Thy 

Follow, and from under heaven destroy them 


1. How is the gold become so dim ? How is 
Purest and finest gold thus changed to this ? 270 
The stones which were stones of the sanctuary. 
Scattered in comers of each street do lie. 

2. The precious sons of Sion, which should be 
Valued at purest gold, how do we see 
Low rated now, as earthen pitchers, stand, 
Which are the work of a poor potter's hand ? 

3. Even the sea-calfe draw their breasts, and give 
Suck to their young ; my people's daughters live. 
By reason of the foes' great crudness. 

As do the owls in the vast wilderness. 280 

L 274. x6so» asfurtstgpld 


4. And when the sacking child doth strive to draw, 
His tongue for thirst cleaves to his upper jaw ; 
And when for bread the children cry, 

There is no man that doth them satisfy. 

5. They which before were delicately fed. 
Now in the streets forlorn have perished ; 
And they which ever were in scarlet clothed, 

Sit and embrace the dunghills which they loathed. 

6. The daughters of my people have sinn'd more, 
Than did the town of Sodom sin before ; 290 
Which being at once destroy'd, there did remain 
No hands amongst them to yex them again. 

7. But heretofore, purer her Nazarite 

Was than the snow, and milk was not so white ; 
As carbuncles did their pure bodies shine, 
And all their polish'dness was sapphirine. 

8. They're darker now than blackness ; none can 

Them by the face, as through the street they go ; 
For now their skin doth cleave unto their bone. 
And withered, is like to dry wood grown. 300 

9. Better by sword than famine 'tis to die ; 

And better through-pierced, than through penury. 
10. Women, by nature pitiful, have eat 

Their children— dress'd with their own hand— fi>r 


1 1. JehoTth here folly accomplish'd hath 

His indignatioii, and pour'd forth His wrath ; 
Kindled a fire in Sion, which hath power 
To eat, and her foundations to deYOtir* 

12. Nor would the kings of th' earth, nor all which 

In the inhabitable world belieye, 310 

That any adversary, any foe, 
Into Jerusalem should enter so. 

13. For the priests* sins, and prophets', which have 

Blood in the streets and the just murdered ; 

14. Which, when those men whom they made blind 

did stray 
Thorough the streets, defilM by the way 

Vnth blood, the which impossible it was 
Their garment should 'scape touching, as they 

15. Would cry aloud, "Depart, defilM men. 
Depart, depart^ and touch not us 1 " and then 320 

They fled, and stray'd, and with the Gentiles were ; 
Yet told their friendSi they should not long dwell 

16. For this they're scatter'd by Jehovah's face. 
Who never will r^ard them more; no grace 


Unto their old men shall the foe afford ; 
Nor, that the/re priests, redeem them from the 

17. And we as yet, for all these miseries 
Desiring our vain help, consume our eyes. 

And such a nation as cannot save. 

We in desire and speculation have ; 330 

18. They hunt our steps, that in the streets we fear 
To go ; our end is now approached near. 

Our days accomplished are ; this the last day ; 
Eagles of heav'n are not so swift as they 

19. Which follow us ; o*er mountain tops they fly 
At us, and for us in the desert lie. 

20. Th' Anointed Lord, breath of oar nostrils, He 
Of whom we said, under His shadow we 
Shall with more ease under the heathen dwell, 
Into the pit which these men digged, felL 340 

21. Rejoice, O Edom*s daughter, joyful be 
Thou that inhabit'st Uz, for unto thee 

This cup shall pass, and thou with drunkenness 
Shalt fill thyself, and show thy nakedness. 

22. Then thy sins, O Sion, shall be spent, 

The Lord will not leave thee in banishment 
Thy sins, O Edom's daughter. He will see, 
And for them, pay thee with captivity. 
VOL. I. 14 


1. Remember, O Lord, what is &ll'n on us ; 

See, and mark how we are reproached thus ; 350 

2. For unto strangers our possession 

Is tum'd, our houses unto aliens gone. 

3. Our mothers are become as widows ; we 
As orphans all, and without fathers be ; 

4. Waters which are our own, we drink and pay ; 
And upon our own wood a price they lay. 

5. Our persecutors on our necks do at ; 
They make us travail, and not intermit ; 

6. We stretch our hands unto th' Egyptians 

To get us bread ; and to th' Assyrians. 3^ 

7. Our fathers did these sins, and are no more ; 
But we do bear the sins they did before. 

8. They are but serrants, which do rule us thus. 
Yet from their hands none would deliyer us. 

9. With danger of our life our bread we gat ; 
For in the wilderness the sword did wait 

10. The tempests of this famine we lived in. 
Black as an oven coloured had our skin. 

1 1. In Judah's cities they the maids abused 

By force, and so women in Sion used. 370 

12. The princes with their hands they hung ; no grace 
Nor honour gave they to the elder's £»ce. 


13. Unto the mill our young men carried are, 
And children fell under the wood they bare. 

14. Elders the gates, youth did their songs forbear ; 
Gone was our joy ; our dancings, mournings were. 

15. Now is the crown fall'n from our head ; and woe 
Be unto us, because we've sinnM so. 

16. For this our hearts do languish, and for this 
Over our eyes a cloudy dimness is. 380 

17. Because Mount Sion desolate doth lie^ 
And foxes there do go at liberty ; 

18. But Thou, O Lord, art ever, and Thy throne 
From generation to generation. 

19. Why shouldst Thou forget us eternally ? 
Or leave us thus long in this misery ? 

20. Restore us. Lord, to Thee, that so we may 
Return, and as of old, renew our day. 

21. For oughtest Thou, O Lord, despise us thus, 
And to be utterly enraged at us ? 390 


Since I am coming to that Holy room. 
Where, with Thy choir of saints for evermore, 

I shall be made Thy music ; as I come 
I tune the instrument here at the door, 
And what I must do then, think here before ; 

L 3. So Walton (1670) ; 1650, the 
I 4. Walt, my instrument 


Whilst my physicians by their love are grown 
CosmographerSy smd I their map, who lie 

Flat on this bed, that by them may be shown 
That this is my south-west discovery, 

« Perjrttumfebris, by these straits to die ; lo 

I joy, that in these straits I see my west ; 

For, though those currents yield return to none. 
What shall my west hurt xne ? As west and east 

In all flat maps — ^and I am one — ^are one. 

So death doth touch the resurrection. 

Is the Pacific sea my home? Or are 
The eastern riches ? Is Jerusalem ? 

Anyan, and Magellan, and Gibraltar ? 
All straits, and none but straits, are vrzj^ to them 
Whether where Japhet dwelt, or Cham, or 
Shem. 20 

We think that Paradise and Calvaiy, 
Christ's cross and Adam's tree, stood in one place ; 

Look, Lord, and find both Adams met in me ; 
As the first Adam's sweat surrounds my &ce. 
May the last Adam's blood my soul embrace. 

So, in His purple wrapp'd, receive me. Lord ; 
By these His thorns, give me His other crown ; 

And as to others' souls I preach'd Thy word, 
Be this my text, my sermon to mine own, 
"Therefore that He may raise, the Lord throws 
down." 30 

L 6. Walt., Sinfie ioves I «8. Walt, other 

1. 30. Walt., That he may raise, therefore 



Wilt Thou forgive that sin where I begun. 

Which was my sin, though it were done before ? 
Wilt Thou forgive that sin, tlirough which I run. 
And do run still, though still I do deplore? 
When Thou hast done, Then hast not done^ 
For I have more. 


Wilt Thou forgive that sin which I have won 
Others to sin, and made my sin their door? 
Wilt Thou forgive that sin which I did shun 
A year or two^ bat wallowed in a score ? 10 

When Thon hast done. Thou hast not done. 
For I have more. 


I have a sin of fear, that when I have spun 

My last thread, I shall perish on the shore ; 
But swear by Thyself, that at my death Thy Son 
Shall shine as he shines now, and heretofore ; 
And, having done that, Thon hast done ; 
I fear no more. 

1. 8. 1650, my situ 




Qui piias assaetus serpentam fasce tabellas 

Signare, hsec nostne sjrmbola parva domusy 
Adsdtus domui Domini, patrioque rdicto 

Stemmate, nanciscor stemmata jure nova. 
Hinc mihi Crux primo quae fronti impiessa lavacro, 

Finibus extensis, anchora facta patet. 
Anchone in effigiem Crux tandem desinit ipsam, 

Anchora fit tandem Crux tolerata diu. 
Hoc tamen nt fiat, Christo vegetatnr ab ipso 

Crux, et ab afl^o est Anchora facta Jeso. xo 

Nee natalitiis penitns serpentibus orbor, 

Non ita dat Deos, ut auferat ante data. 
Qua sapiens, dos est, qua terram lambit et ambit, 

Pestis, at in nostra sit medicina Cmce 
Serpens fixa Cruci si sit natura, Crndque 

A fixo nobis gratia tota fluat. 
Omnia cum Crux sint. Crux Andiora fixa, sigillum 

Non tam dicendum hoc^ qnam catechismns erit. 
Mitto, nee exigua, exigna sub imagine, dona, 

Pignora amicitise, et munera Yota preces. 20 

Plura tibi accnmulet sanctus cognominis Ille 

Regia qui flavo dona sigillac equo. 

L X. Walton (1658). /?/^« 



Adopted in God's femily and so 

Our old coat lost, unto new arms I go. 

The Cross — ^my seal at baptism — spread below 

Does, by that form, into an Anchor grow. 

Crosses grow Anchors ; bear, as thou shouldest do 

Thy Cross, and that Cross grows an Anchor too. 

But He that makes our Crosses Anchors thus. 

Is Christ, who there is crucified for us. 

Yet may I, with this, my first serpents hold ; 

God gives new blessings, and yet leaves the old ; lo 

The serpent may, as wise, my pattern be ; 

My poison, as he feeds on dust, that's me. 

An^ as he rounds the earth to murder sure. 

My death he is, but on the Cross, my cure. 

Crucify nature then, and then implore 

AU grace from Him, crucified there before ; 

Then all is Cross, and that Cross Anchor grown ; 

This seal's a catechism, not a seal alone. 

Under that little seal great gifts I send. 

Works, and pra3rers, pawns, and firuits of a friend. 20 

And may that saint which rides in our great seal. 

To you who bear his name, great bounties deal ! 

1, a. Walton (1658). My old coat lost, into new arms I go 
1. 3. Walt., in baptism 
1. 9. Walt, Yttwith tkis, I may 
1. 14. Walt., He'is my doath L 17. Walt, Wkem 

L 90. Walt, Both works L az. Walt, that rides om 
1. 89. Walt, To you tkat bear his name large bounty 


FACTA,** FOL. l60. 

God grant thee thine own wish, and grant thee mine. 
Them who dost, best friend, in best things oatshine ; 
May thy soul, erer cheerfiil, ne'er know cares^ 
Nor thy life, erer lively, know grey hairs. 
Nor thy hand, ever open, know base holds. 
Nor thy purse, ever plump, know pleats, or folds. 
Nor thy tongue, ever trae, know a fidse thing. 
Nor thy word, ever mild, know quarrelling, 
Nor thy works, ever equal, know disguise. 
Nor thy £une, ever pure^ know contumelies, lo 

Nor thy prayers know low objects, still divine ; 
God grant thee thine own wish, and grant thee mine. 



fx. zhr. This pre£ioe ooctm in the editkms of 163^, 
Z635, and 16391 


p. zfiz. This prefiaoe replaces 7^ Printer U tki 
Understanders in the editions of z6qo and 1669. WHliam 
Craven, created Baron Craven of Hampsted-Maniiam 
in 1627, and Eail Craven in 1664, is best known as a 
devoted adherent of Elizabeth, Queen of Bohemia. He 
was bdieved to have been privatdj married to her. His 
onlj connection with literature appears to be in setenl 
dedications On a poem written to him bj Doone^ or, 
more likdj, by his ton, see Appendix C 

John Donne, D.CL., the writer of the pre&ee to die 
edition of 1650, was a son of the poet. Hewas bom Z604, 
and died \(Aat. He cannot, therefore, have had anything 
todowiththeeditionof 1669. as Dr. Grosart thinks. He 
was a freethinker, and a man of kx>se literary and per- 
sonal diaracter. After his father's denth he got hold of 
the papen left to Dr. King, and appeared as the editor of 
the LXXX Sermomi li6ic>), the Biatkamaios (1648), the 
Essays in Divinity (1051), the Letters to Several renons 
of Honour (1651), and other posthumous woiks. He 
also edited Sir T. Matthews^ Collection of Letters (1660), 
and Pembroke and Ruddier's Poewu (1660). His own 
productions are trifling, and mostly indecent Most of 
them exist only in MS. ; afew areto be found in a volume 
called ZV»«/i5tf/fr( 1662). A ccpy of his Will, printed 
as a broadsheet, is in the British Mnsenm. 

2i8 NOTES. 

Hexastichon Bibliopolab. 

p. 1L The book alluded to is the DeaOCs Dmel of 
1632. It is described on the title-page as ** Delivered in 
a sermon at Whitehall before the King's Majesty in the 
banning of Lent. 16^1]. Being his last sermon, and 
called by his Majesty s household, 'The Dean's own 
Funeral sermon.' It has for frontispiece an engraving 
by Martin Drfoeshout], a half-length figure of Donne in a 
shroud, Mrith the motto Corporis haec animae sit Symdtm 
Syndon lesu. Two anonjfmous elegies, banning re- 
spectively "To have lived eminent in a degree, and 
** I cannot blame those men, that knew thee well," are 
appended at the end of the volume. These were reprinted 
in the 163Q Poems with the signatures H[enry] K^g] 
and Edw. Hvde. Walton (1640) gives an account of the 
preaching of the sermon, and also, in his 1658 editioa, 
describes the painting of the portrait, as follows— 

*' A monument being resolved upon. Dr. Donne sent 
for a carver to make for him in wood the figure of an 
urn, giving him directions for the compass and height of 
it, and to oring with it a board, of the just height of his 
body. These being got, then without delay a dioioe 
painter was got to be in readiness to draw nis picture, 
which was tsucen as followeth : — Several charcoal fires 
being first made in his large stud^, he brought with him 
faito that place his winding-sheet m his hand, and having 
put ofif all his clothes, had this sheet put on him, and so 
tied with knots at his head and feet, and his hands so 
placed as dead bodies are usually fitted, to be shrouded 
and put into their coffin or grave. Upon this um he 
thus stood, with his eyes shut, and with so much of the 
sheet turned aside as might show his lean, pale, and 
death-like face, which was purposely turned towards the 
East, from whence he expected the second coming of his 
and our Saviour Jesus. In this posture he was drawn at 
his just height ; and when the picture was fully finished, 
he caused it to be set by his bedside, where it continued, * 
and became his hourly object till his death, and was then 
given to his dearest friend and executor Dr. Henry King, 
then chief residentiary of Paul's, who caused him to be 
thus carved in one entire piece of white marble« as it now 

NOTES, 219 

itandi In that church." Thii "itatue In a iheet of 
stone " If itiU to be leen In St. Paul's : it wai one of the 
few relict preserved from the Great Fire. A writer in 
Notes and Qusria (ist Series, vl 393) mentions other 
examples of * ' emaciated ' ' images. They appear to have 
been a favourite whimsicality of the Middle Ageip 

Hbxaitickon ad Bibliopolam. 

p. !L Scattered sermons of Donne's were published 
in his lifetime. After the date of the 1633 Poems, his 
son issued three folio collect ionii of them ; a first Install 
roent of LXXX Sirmoms, for which Icaalc Walton wrote 
his Life In 1640 ; a second of Afty in 1649, and a third oi 
twenty-fotir (twenty-six nominally, but two were carcloisly 
printed in duplicate) in x66o. 


p. lii. Another poem by Ben Jonson To yohn 
DonHi Is printed in the 1650 edition (p. 387), together 
with a set of lines To Lucy, Countess ofSea/oraiwith 
Mr, Donne's Satyres (p. 386). All three poems had 
previouslv appeared amonjnt the Epigrams In the x6z6 
folio of J onson's works. &onne*s Latin comnnendatory 
verses to nis friend's Volpone will be found In vol. ii. p. 71. 
There are several allusions to Donne in Jonson's Conver* 
sations with Drummond (ed. Laing, for the Shakespeare 
Society, Z843). Jonson told Drummond that he loeant 
Donne by (Jriticus in the lost dialogue version of hit Art 
of Poisie (Laing, pp. 6, 29). Mr. Fleay thinks that 
Donne may also be Ovid in The Poetaster, and Cordatus 
in Bvery Man out of his Humour, See his Biogra^hieal 
Chronicle of the English Drama, s.v. Jonson, 


The majority of the lyrics included in this section 
appeared in various parts of the 1633 Poems. In 1635 
were added Farewell to Love (p. 76), A Lecture upotg ike 
Shadow (p. 78), and A Dialogue betweeu Sir Henry 
WotUm and Mr, Donne (p. 79) ; in 1650 Tke Token {p, 
80), and Self-Love (p. 81) ; and in 1669 the first of the 
two Break of Day poems (p. sa). A reference to the 
notes that foUow will show tnat hardly anv of the Songs 
and Sonneu can be definitely dated. The only excep- 
tions are A Valediction forbidding Mourning (pi 51), 
and the song ^* Sweetest Love, fdo not go^ m. z6), 
which were probably written in the autumn of z6zi. 
Several other songs appear to have been written to mnsic, 
which has not in most cases been identified. All Donne's 
Love-poems, — and the majority of the Songs and Sonnets 
are concerned with love, — seem to me to foil into two 
divisions. There is one, marked by cynicism, ethicad 
laxity, and a somewhat deliberate profession of incon- 
stancy. This I believe to be his earliest style, and ascribe 
the poems marked by it to the period before 1596. About 
that date he became acquainted with Anne More, whom 
he evidently loved devotedly and sincerely ever lifter. 
And therefore from 1596 onwards I place the second 
division, with its emphasis of the spiritual, and deep in- 
sight into the real things of love. About 1615, when he 
took orders, Donne practically ceased from writing secular 
poetry altogether. This gives a range for his fyrics of, 
say twentv-five years, from 1590 to 1615. The earlier 
pcntion of this time, up to his marriage in z6oz, was, 
however, probably the most prolific. 


p. z. The Flea. 

The bad taste of the editor or publisher of the 1635 
edition must be responsible for the appearance of this 
poem at the beginning of the volume. In 1633 it occu« 
pied a much less conspicuous position. Another similar 
one has been ascribed to Donne by Sir John Simeon 
(see Appendix A). Two others may be found in the 
works of Wm. Drummond of Hawthomden (ed. W. C. 
Ward, vol. L p. 173), and a fifth in John Davies of 
Hereford's Scourge 0/ Folly (1611), 

p. 3. The Good-Morrow. 

1. 4. The Seven Sleepers' den. The Seven Sleepers of 
Ephesus, said by Gregory of Tours to have been seven 
noble Christian youths, who fled to escape martyrdom 
during the Decian persecution (a.d. 250) to a cave in 
Mt. Celion, and remained there asleep for 230 years. 
Other versions of the legend are given in the Koran and 

p. 4. Song. 

The first two stanzas of this song, with the heading A 
Baritie, are printed in the 1653 edition of Francis Beau- 
mont's Poems. Th^ are not in the 1640 edition, where, 
however, may be found another poem of similar character, 
beginning — 

" Catch me a star that's falling from the sky.*' 

This is also in Mennis and Smith's Wit Restored (1658). 

I'he second stanza of Donne's poem was printed in one 
of the editions of Wifs Recreations (cf. the reprint in 
Musarum Deliciae^ i8i7)« The poem, or part of it, also 
occurs, set to music by an unknown composer in E^. 
MS. 2013, f. 58. 

Habington has a poem, evidently referring to this of 
Donne's Against them who lay Unchastity to the Sex gf 
Women, It begins^- 

223 NOTES. 

** They meet but with unwholesome spfii^[s» 
And summen which infectkNis are ; 
They hear but when the mermaid sings. 
And only see the falling star : 

Who ever dare 
Affirm no woman chaste and fsir.** 

t X. Compare the Efitkalamium mi Ltrd Soturui, 
line ao4, and the different use of the same metaiAor in 
these lines from Lord Strand's Mtditatunu (Hannah, 
Courtly Poets, p. 194)1 

** How each admires 
Heaven's twinkling fires, 
Whilst from their glorious seat 
Their influence gives light and beat ; 
But O how few there are, 
Though danger from the act be far. 
Will run to catch a falling star I *' 

t 8* ^ mandraii root. The mamlragora, or man-^ 
drake, partly from its name, partly from the shape of its 
foriced root, was looked upon as a link between the animal 
or human and vegetable worlds. It was supposed to 
shriek when it was torn up out of the earth. 

p. 6t The Undertaking. 

The heading is not in the 1633 edition. It was added 
in 1635. 

1. 3. tke Worthies, llie Nine Worthies were three 
Gentiles, Hector, Alexander, Julius Caesar ; three Jews, 
Joshua, David, Judas Maccabaeus; three Christians, 
Arthur, Charlemagne, Godfrey of Bouillon. Cf. the 
pafeant of the Nine Worthies in Love's Labours Lost, 

L 6. ^ecular stone. This appears to be an allusion 
to the umous magic mirrors or "show-stones" of Dr. 
Dee. Dee was a man of great learning, a mathematician 
and astrologer, and an original Fellow of Trinity CoUq^, 
Cambridge. He took to alchemy, and was said to have 
found the philosopher's stone in the ruins of Glastonbury 
Abbey. In 158 1 appeared the first of these mysterious 
*' show-stones," which when gazed upon by a propedy 



sifted penoD, presented apparitions. A seoond. said by 
Dee to have been given to him by an angel, was pro- 
duced in 1582. Both of these are in existence ; one, a 
piece of poUshed eannd coal, is in the possession of Lord 
Londesborough ; the other, a smoky quartz crystal, is in 
the British Museum. Dee earned an unenviable reputa- 
tion for the black art, but he appears to have been in 
large measure the dupe of others. Many of his writings 
GO occult subjects remain, most of them in MS. 

pu 7. The Sun Rising. 

In Addl. MS. 25,707, f. 20, this poem is headed Ad 
Solem: A Song, 

p. 9. The Indifferent. 

Compare with the subject of this poem that of Elegy 

p. 10. Love's Usury. 

1. 15. quelquts chasiSt kickshaws, dainties, trifles. In 
a letter to Sir Henry Goodyere, written i6o6~i6io 
(AVord, vi 301), Donne says, *' These, sir. are the salads 
and onions of Micham, sent to you with as wholesome 
afifection as your other friends send melons and quelqui' 
ekoses from Court and London." 

pu Z2. The Canonization. 

L 15. the plaguy bill, the weekly bill or list of deaths 
from me plague. 

p. 15. Lovers' Infiniteness. 

This poem is headed Mon Tout m AddL MS. 
25,707, t x6. 

p. z6. Song. 

I have little doubt that this poem, Uke the Valediction 
on p. 51, and perhaps Elegy xvii., was written at the time- 

224 NOTES. 

of Donne^s departure for Flmioe with Uie Dnuys in i6xx. 
The phrase used in the last stansa — 

•* Let not thT divining heart 
Forethink me any ill '*— 

should be compared with what Walton (1670) says of 
this journey, "She professed an unwillingness to allow 
him any absence from her ; sajring, ' Her divining soul 
boded her some ill in his absence' ; and therefore desired 
him not to leave her." 

p. aa A Fever. 

This occurs twice in T. C. Dublin MS. G. s. ai. On 
f. 143 it is found unsigned amongst a numbo' of Donne's 
poems, also unsigned : on f. 430 it is ascribed to John 

p. 22. Break of Dai: 

This first appeared in i66p. not as a separate 
but as a first stansa to the following, whioi had 
in previous editions with, *''Tls true, 'tis day; 
though it be." The two are, however, obviously of 
different metrical structure. In Addl. MS. 25,707, f. z8, 
the additional stanza has been inserted by a difibrent 
hand. It occurs also by itself, set to music and with 
no author's name given, in Orlando Gibbons' XVi 
Madrigals and Mottets (1612). Here it b^ns, "Ah, 
dear heart, why do you rise? ' It also occurs in John 
Dowland's A Pilgrim' i Solace (1612). Here it begins 
"Sweet, stay awhile, why will you rise," and is followed 
by a second verse. Probably the initials J. D. led to its 
being ascribed to Donne. \ 

For the sentiment, compare Romeo andyulieit Act III. 
Sc v., the passage in which Gervinus finds the influence 
of the Aubade or dawn-song. 

p. 23. [Another of the Same.] 

This is in WilUam Corkine's Second Booh of Airs 


p. 25. A Valediction of my Name, in the 


1. 6. the diamonds of either rock; L e. from the East or 
West Indies, Golconda or Brazil. 

L 8. through-shine, translucent. 

1. fli. The fashion of wearing death's-heads in rings, by 
leay of Memento Mori, is said to have been set by Diana 
of Poitiers: cf. 2 Hen, IV,, II. iv. 254, "Peace, good 
DoU 1 do not speak like a death's-head ; do not bid me 
remember mine end " ; and Beaumont and Fletcher, The 
Chances, Act I. Sc. v. — 

** As they keep death's-heads in rings, 
To cry 'memento' to me." 

L 33. It is unnecessary to multiply quotations illus- 
trating the belief in the influence of stars upon the 
character of those bom when they are, as astrologers 
say, in the ascendant : cf. e. g. Beatrice's explanation of 
her mercurial temperament in Much Ado About Nothing, 
II. i. 346 — 

** Don Pedro . , • Out of question, you were bom in 
a merry hour. 

Beatrice, No, sure, my lord, my mother cried : but 
then there was a star danced, and under that was I 

And Pericles^ L I 8^ 

"At whose conception, till Lucina reigned, 
Nature this dowry gave, to glad her presence ; 
The senate-house of planets all did sit, 
To knit in her their best perfections." 

1. 48. my Genius, A Genius is properly a tutelar 
spirit, but it comes to have very much the sense of 
"temperament, personality": cf. Macbeth, III. I 55 — 

"under him. 
My Genius is rebuked ; as, it is said, 
Mark Antony's was by Caesar." 

p. 29. Twickenham Garden. 

This was the residence of the Countess of Bedford. 
VOL. I. 15 

326 NOTES. 

In m prose letter to her (Alford, yL 903), Donne speaks 
of some verses "jonr Ladyship did me the honour to 
see in Twickenhiam garden." Lysons lEmvinms of 
Lomdtm, iiL 56c) states that a rerersion 01 the lease of 
Twickenham rark, fonnerlj the home of Francis Bacon, 
came into the hands of Sir Heniy Goodyere and Edward 
Woodward in 1607. and that both the existing lease and 
the reversioo were transfened in 1608 to Geocge, Lord 
Carew and George Croke in trust for Lady Bedford, 
who lived there until 1618. Cf. also the Verse Letter to 
lier(iL 90) — 

" The mine, the magazine, the ooramon-weal. 
The story of beauty, in Twickenham is, and yon "^ 

and the note upon Mrs. Boulstred (vol. H. p. 89). 

L 6. the spider Laue. The spider was believed to be 
fiill of poison. CC Rich. I/., IIL ii 14 — 

" But let thy spiders, that suck up thy yenom. 
And heaTy-gaited toads lie in their way." 

p. jx Valediction to his Book. 

I suspect that the title of this poem is a mistake of 
Donne's editor. It does not appear to have been written 
as an Envoi; the " manuscripts" spoken of were not for 
the press, but only the love-letters which had passed 
between Donne and his mistress. A similar heading 
appears, ho%irever, in several independent MSSw 

1. 3. eloign, banish, the French Hoigner, 

1. 6. Sifytsglory. This was the Cumaean Sibyl, who 
offered King Tarquin successively nine, six and three 
books of prophecies for the same sum. 

I 7. her who from Pindar could allure, "Corinna 
the l*heban, Pindar's instructress in poetry, and successful 
rival" (Grosart). 

I. 8. her, through whose help Lucan is not lame, 
" Probably Argentaria Polla, Lucan' s wife and widow " 

p. 33. COMMUNITr, 

The heading was added hi 1635. 


p. 34. Love's Growth. 

1. 03. sphires. The modern conception of the so'er 
lystem was only slowly becoming known in Donne's 
time. See the letter to Lady Bedford (vol. ii. p. 33)— 

" New philosophy arrests the sun, 
And bids the passive earth about it run." 

The theory was first suggested bv Copemleui In 
1543, and afterwards preached by Galileo (z6zo~z6x6). 
According to the "Ptolemaic" system which preceded 
it, the Earth was the centre of ten concentric spheres, or 
revolving rings of space. Seven of these were the orbits 
of the Sun, Moon, and the five great planets ; an eighth 
held the Fixed Stars; the ninth was known as the 
Crystalline sphere, the tenth as the Primum MolUt, 
CC Paradise Lost t ill. 481— 

"They pass the planets seven, and pass the fix^d, 
And that crystalline sphere whose balance weiglis 
The trepidation talked, and that first moved." 

p. 37. Confined Love. 
The heading was added in 1635. 

p. 4z. Lovb'8 Alchemy. 

L 7. M* tlixir. The goals of the alchemist's research 
were the philosopher's stone, and the red tincture or great 
elixir. Sometimes the first of the^ie was credited with 
the property of transmuting baser metals to gold, the 
second with that of renewing life ; at other times the two 
are treated as practically identical. 

p. 43. The Message. 

The heading was added in 1635. 

A writer under the signature Cpl. in Notes and Quiries 
(4th Series, ii. 614) speaks of a MS. In which thix and 
tome other of Donne's lyrics are included as "Songs 
which were made to certain airs which were made before." 
This same heading occurs in Harl. 4955. The songs 


228 NOTES. 

induded under it are, besides the present one, " Sweetest 
love, I do not go" (p. z6),and "Come live with me, and 
be mr love" (p. 47). It is also found in T. C. Dublin 
lis. G. a. ax, t z6o. 


St. Lucy's Daj, December the Z3th. was, according to 
the old style of reckoning, the ''shortest day " in the year. 

L az. limbu. This word is a corruption of olemHc, a 
term of Arabian alchemy for the *' still or vessel in which 
chemicals were vaporixed. 

p. 47. The Bait. 

The headiBjg was added in x63^ 

This poem is one of the several imitations of Marlowe's 
famous "Come live with me, and be my love," printed 
successively in TJU Passionate Pilgrim (1599). Et^latuTs 
Helicon (z6oo), and The Compleat Angler (Z653). Donne's 
poem also appears in The Compleat Angler\L6$3^\ where 
it is introduced as follows — 

*' Viator. Yes. Mister, I wiU speak you a copy of 
verses that were made bv Dr. Donne, and made to show 
the world that he coulcl make soft and smooth verses, 
when he thought them fit and worth his labour ; and I 
k)ve them the better because they allude to rivers, and 
fish, and fishing. They be these. 

Another poem was added by Cotton in the second part 
of the Compleat Angler, called An Invitation to Phillis, 
and also beginning, ' ' Come live with me, and be my love." 
Other verses on the same theme maybe found in EnglancTs 
Helicon (1600), " If all the world and love was young " 
(Ignoto, but ascribed by Walton, who quotes this &o 
in the Compleat Angler, to Sir Walter Raleigh; cf. 
Hannah, Courtly Poets, p. 11), and " Come live with 
me, and be my dear" (Ignoto) ; in Herrick's Hesperides, 
under the title To Phillis " Live, live with me, and thou 
shalt see " ; in Pembroke and Rudyard's Poems (1660), 
"Dear, leave thy home, and come with me." There 
are doubtless others. The Bait is ascribed to Sir Henry 
Wotton in AddL MS. Z9,268, f. 19, but this is a MS. 
of no great credit. Sec also note to p. 43. 


p. 51. A Valediction forbidding Mousnino. 

This poem was printed with several variants in the 
fourth ^ition of Walton's Life 0/ Donne (i&j^. It is 
not in the 1640, nor the 1658, nor the 1670 edition. 
Walton states that it was given by Donne to his wife 
when he left her to go to France and Belgium, with Sic 
Robert Drury in 161 1. He continues, "And I beg leave 
to tell that I have heard some critics, learned ^th in 
languages and poetry, say that none of the Greek or 
Latin poets did ever equal them." It was during this 
mbsenoe that Donne had a sudden vision of his wife at a 
moment when she was in great danger. See Walton's 
Life of Donne, and cf. notes to pp. z6, 139. 

A copy of the Valediction, unsigned and with many 
trifling variants, is to be found in Dr. Grosart's edition 
of the Farmer-Chetham MS. 

I. zi. trepidation of the spheres, Cf. Paradise Lost, 
iii. 483, quoted in the note to page 34. 

The ' ' trepidation " was the precession of the equinoxes, 
supposed, according to the Ptolemaic astronomy, to be 
caused by the movements of the Ninth or Crystalline 

p. 64. The Primrose, being at Montgomery 


In 1633, the heading is simply The Primrose, The 
rest was added in 1635. 

Montgomery Castle was the home of Lady Herbert, 
mother of Lord Herbert of Cherbury and of George 
Herbert. All three appear to have been among Donne's 
intimate friends. See pp. Z17, 156; vol. ii. pp. 20. 
43, with notes. In 1607 Montgomery Castle was taken 
from its possessors by Tames I., and transferred to their 
kinsman Philip, Earl or Pembroke, who was created Earl 
of Montgomery. It was bought back by Sir Edward 
Herbert for £soo in 1613. Donne visited him there in 
that year (cf. note to the Good Friday poem, p. 173), but 
probably this poem was written before 1607. 

\, 12. a six, or four. The normal number of seg- 
ments in the corolui of a primrose is five ; occasionally 
specimens are found in which it is divided into four or 

ajo NOTES. 

six. The latter Tarietj was held as a symbol of trne loTe. 
CL W. Browne, Br itannia *! PastortJs, bk. ii. song 3 — 

"The primrose when with six leaves gotten grace. 
Holds as a true-love in their bosoms place. ' 

L 99^ they fall first into five; that is, the first even 
numbor, two, added to the fint odd number, three — one^ 
the unit, of course not counting— makes five. 

p. 70. A Jet Ring sent. 

1. Ta her thufkb, Thumb^in^ were a common 
ornament for well-to-do cititens. I^taff, in z Hen, I K, 
II. iv. 364, boasts that he was once so slender that he 
could have crept into any alderman's thumt>-ring. This 
passage seems to show that they were worn by women 

72. Negative Lots. 

In AddL MSL 25,707, f. z8, this poem is headed TAe 

p. 75. Song. Soul's Jot. 

This poem occurs in all the editions of Donne except 
2633, and I have therefore included it here. I have very 
little doubt that it is his ; the central idea — that the lovers* 
souls are together, though their bodies may be apart — is 
characteristic of him (cf. A Valediction forbidding 
Mourning, p. 51). So is the contemptuous^* 

'* Fools have no means to meet, 
But by their feet" 

It is however printed, in an inferior version, with the 
initial *' P," in the Eari of Pembroke and Sir Benjamin 
Ruddier's Poems (1660), and it is also ascribed to the 
Earl of Pembroke in Lansd. MS. 777, a very good 
authorit]^. The testimony of the Pembroke and Ruddier 
volume is not of much value. It was edited by the 
younger Donne, who admits in the preface that some 
surreptidous verses may have crept in. As a matter of 
Cact It contains poems by Carew, Dyer and others. It 


must be remembered that the youngs Donne was also 
editor of the 16^0 edition of his father's poems, and 
allowed Soul's Joy to stand there. For other poems in 
the Pembroke and Ruddier volume, which have been 
claimed for Donne, see note to p. 79, and the Appendices. 

I have printed in the footnotes the variant readings of 
Lansd. MS. 777. Wounds for words in line 17 seems to 
me to improve the sense. 

In George Herbert's The Temple (16^3) is included 
A Parodie, of which the following is the nrst verse— 

"Soul's joy, when thou art gone, 

And I alone. 

Which cannot be, 
Because Thou dost abide with me, 
And I depend on Thee ; " 

There is also an apparent reference to SouVs Joy in a 
poem by Sir K. DigBy, written probably after the death 
of Lady Digby in 1633 (see Mr. Bright's Roxburghe Club 
edition of Digby's Poems, page 8). The following are 
the lines in point — 

"And I see those books are false which teach 
That absence works between two souls no breach, 

When they with love 

To each other move. 
And that they (though distant) may meet, kiss and 

For our body doth so clog our mind, 
That here no means of working it can find 

On things absent. 

Or judging present. 
Till the corporal senses first do lead the way." 

There is another protest against the theories of presence 
in absence as expounded by Donne here and in the 
Valediction forbidding Mournings to be found in Cart- 
wright's No Platonic Lave, It begins — 

*' Tell me no more of minds embracing minds. 
And hearts exchanged for hearts ; 
That spirits spirits meet, as winds do winds. 
And mix their subtlest parts ; 

232 NOTES. 

That two unbodied essences may kiss. 

And then, like angels, twist and feel one bliss.** 

p. 7d Farewell to Love. 

First printed in the edition of 1635. 
L 12. Presumably his kigbness was made of gilt ginger- 

p. 78. A Lecture upon the Shadow. 

First printed in the edition of 1635. under the heading 
Song, The present heading was added in 1650. 

p, 79. A Dialogue between Sir Henry 


This poem was first printed in the edition of 163c, on 
p. 195, among the Verse Letters, from which 1 nave 
transferred it. It is printed, with the initial *' P," in Pem- 
broke and Rnddiers Poems (1660) ; but on the small 
authority of this collection, see note to SouFs Joy^ p. 75. 
In HarL MS. 3910, f. 2a, and in HarL MS. 4064, f. 252, 
the first three verses are ascribed to the Eari of Pem- 
broke, and the second three to Sir Benjamin Ruddier. 
In AdcU. MS. 23,229, the first three verses are also given 
to Pembroke, and the second three headed The Answer, 
In T. C Dublin MS. G. 2. 21, ff.424, 426, the first three 
verses are given to Dr. Corbet, and the second three to 
Donne and Rudyard jointly. No division of the Verses 
between the two authors is given in any of the editions 
of Donne. I have attempted to supply one, conjecturally. 

On Sir Henry Wotton and his friendship with Donne, 
see the note to vol ii p. 7. 

p. 8a The Token. 

First printed in 1650, on p. 264, after the Funeral 

p. 8x. Self-Love. 

First printed in 1650, p. 391, without any title. It 
occurs together with Elegy xviii. , between Ben Jonson's 
verses and the Elegies upon Donne, 



The three poems included in this section were all first 
printed in 1633, and appear, with little textual variation, 
m the later editions. As to the dates, the Princess 
Elizabeth was married on Feb. 14, 1613, and the Earl of 
Somerset on Dec. 26, 1613. The Epithalamion made 
at Lincoln's Inn probably dates from Donne's residence 
there in 1592—1596. 

p. 83. An Epithalamion, or Marriage Song on 
THE Lady Elizabeth and Count Palatine being 


In 1669, the heading is An Epitkallalmum on Fred- 
erick Count Palatine of the Rhene, and the Lady Elina^ 
betht being married on St. Valentintfs day, 

Elizabeth, daughter of James I. and Anne of Denmark, 
was bom in 15961 s^nd brought up in ardent Protestant 
principles by Lord Harrington at Combe Abbey. In 
x6i2 she was betrothed to the Elector Palatine Frederick 
V. as an incident of the alliance between England and 
the Protestant Union of Germany. The marriage was 
delayed by the death of Henry, Prince of Wsdes, in 
Nov. x6i2, but it took place on the following Feb. 14 
with great ceremony. A description of the festivities 
may be found in Nichols' Progresses of James /. After 
a few years of gaiety Elizabeth fell on troublous days. 
In 1619 Frederick was chosen King of Bohemia. In the 
inevitable religious conflict which followed the election 
of the Emperor Ferdinand, he lost bis domimons, and 

234 NOTES. 

the rest of his life and the queen's were spent in unsac- 
oessful efforts to recover them. Frederick died in 1632, 
and in 1661 Elizabeth moved to England, where she died 
in the following vear. Her beauty, her wit, and her 
misfortunes ear^d her the title of the ' ' Queen of Hearts,*' 
and the generous devotion of the cavaliers and poets of 
the time. Lord Craven and Sir Henry Wotton were 
among her special admirers : the former was believed to 
have been secretly married to her (see note on page 
xlix) ; the latter wrote in her honour his best verses, 
those beginning, "Ye meaner beauties of the night." 

L 7. On t^ sparrow cf. The Progress of the Soul, 
Stanza xx (vol. ii. p. 158). 

1. 105. It was a commonEIizabethan custom to seren- 
ade a bride and bridegroom on the morning after a 
wedding. Cotgrave states that the song sung on such 
an occasion was called the Hunts up. 

p. 88. Eclogue. 

Robert Carr, or Ker, was a Scotchman who came 
over with Tames I. ; he was knighted in 1607, created 
Viscount Rochester in x6iz. and Earl of Somerset in 
Z613. He fell in love with the Countess of E^ex, who 
obtained a decree of nullity in order to marry him. This 
marriage was vehemently opposed by Carrs friend. Sir 
Thomas Overbury, chiefly on political grounds, since 
the Countess, by birth Frances Howard, was of the 
Spanish or pro-Catholic party. In revenge she got 
Overbury thrown into the Tower, and subsequently had 
him poisoned, probably with Carr's connivance. The 
crime remained a secret, and the marriage took place on 
December 26, 1613. Besides Donne's Epithalamum, 
Campion celebrated the occasion with a masque, and 
Jonson with a set of verses. He had already written his 
masque of Hymenaei for the bnde's former wedding. 
Afterwards Carr fell into disfavour with James : the ' 
murder was discovered in 1615 ; the murderers were 
prosecuted by Bacon, condemned, reprieved, committed 
to the Tower until 162a, and then allowed to live in 
retirement. Their career forms the subject of Marston's 
Insatiate Countess. The following is a postscript to a 
letter to Sir Robert Drury (Alford, vl 349} : " I cannot 


tell you so much, as you tell me, of anything from my 
Lord of Somerset, since the Epithalamium, for I he^rd 
nothing." There is another Sir Robert Carr, afterwards 
Earl of Ancrum, who was a friend and frequent corre- 
spondent of Donne's, and must not be confused with the 
Earl of Somerset. See a letter to him in vol. ii. p. 97, 
and the note there. 

L 87. sued livery. Land held by feudal tenure lapsed 
to the lord at the death of a tenant, until it was ascer- 
tained if the heir was of age ; if so he took possession at 
once, on payihent of a year's profits, known as primer 
seisin; if not, the estate remained in the lord's hands, 
as his guardian, until he became so, when he could claim 
livery t or delivery, of wardship, by suing for a writ of 
ouster le main and paying half a year's profits. 

1. 161. a cypress, a crape veil. 

1. 204. Cf. with the opening of this stanza the Song, 
" Go and catch a falling star," on p. 4. 

L 215. Cf. Sir T. Browne, Pseudodoxia Epidemical 
iii. 21, *^ Why some lamps included in close bodies have 
burned many hundred years, as that discovered in the 
sepulchre of Tullia, the sister of Cicero, and that of 
Olibius many years after, near Padua?" Browne's 
editor refers to Hutton, Ozananis Philosophical Recrt^ 
ationSt vol i. p. 496. 

p. 98. Epithalamion made at Lincoln's Inn. 

Donne became a student at Lincoln's Inn on May 6, 
Z592, and the Epithalamion was probably written within 
the next two or three years. It is less likely that it 
belongs to the period 1616-1622, when Dr. Domie was 
reader to the same learned society. 



Ths Elegies nambered in this edition i. to z. and zv. 
first appeared in 1653 (cf. BibUographical Note, p.zzxv) ; 
Elegies 3d. to ziy. zvl and xviL were added m 1635 ; 
El^y zyiii. in z6^ ; Elegies xix. and zx. in 1669. Oke 
the Songs and bonnets, the Elegies deal mainly with 
love, and represent Donne's earlier and later attitude of 
mind on the subject Most of them are probably earlier 
than z6oo, all earlier than 16x4. I have shown reason in 
the notes that follow for giving approximate dates to 
Elegy V. (1596?), Elegy iz. ( iso^-idoo), Elegy zi. (before 
1508), Elegy ZVL (16G9-1610), Elegy zviL (1611). 

Ezoept where otherwise stated, the headings to the 
Elegies appear only in 1635-1654, not in 1633, or 1669. 

p. Z03. Elegt I. 

L 4« a urt hark, Cf. Hamlet^ I. v.— 

*' And a most instant tetter bark'd about. 
Most lazar-like, with foul and loathsome crust, 
All my smooth body." 

p. 103. Elegy ii. 

n. 41, 42. I have attempted to make sense out of the 
various readings of the editions and MSS. 

L 5a a tympany^ an abdominal swelling. 

1. 52. The following two lines are inserted after this 
in 1669 — 

" Whom dildoes, bed-staves, and her velvet glass 
Would be as loth to touch as Joseph was." 

They occur also in the Farmer-Chetham and other 


p. 107. Elegy iv. 

1.8. a cockatrice; i. e. a basilisk; whereof it was 
believed that all who caught its eye should die presently ; 
cf. among many possible illustrations, Rich, II L^ IV. i.*- 

*' A cockatrice hast thou hatched to the world. 
Whose unavoided eye is murderous." 

p. xia Elegy ▼. 

Apparently written before some voyage ; possibly that 
of 159(5 or 1597. but possibly also an unrecorded earlier one. 
Several portraits of Donne are mentioned in Bromley's 
Catalogue of Engraved Portraits, The * ' pictu re " of this 
Elegy may have been the original of one of these, perhaps 
Na 4. 

z. By M. Dro[eshout] ; 4to: This is the "winding- 
sheet" portrait, prefixed to the Deaths Duel of 1632, and 
described in the note to page IL 

a. By Loggan. 

3. By Lombart ; 4to. This belongs to the Letters of 
1651 and 1654, but is occasionally found inserted in the 
Poems of 1633. 

4. By Marshall ; 8vo ; dated " Oct. 18, 1591." This is 
found with the 1635 and subsequent editions of the 
Poems, and some copies, in quarto, appear to have 
originally belonged to the 1633 edition. 

5. By M. Merian, jun., foL This is part of the title- 
page to the Sermons of 1640. It is used again, with the 
date ' ' Aet. 43 " (i. e, 1615), in the 1658 edition of Walton's 

In addition to these, Dr. Grosart has engraved, in 
the large paper copies of his edition, a miniature by 
Oliver, and an allied Vandyke. 

p. 114. Elegy vin. 

t a. chafed musk cats pores. The civet cat, or Hyena 
odorifera : cf. Sir Thomas Browne, Pseudodoxia Epi- 
demua, iii. 4. 

L za Sanserra, Sancerre, near Bourges, a stronghold 

238 NOTES, 

of the Hnmnots, wms besieged by the Catholics hi 1573. 
The siege lasted nine montln. 

L 23. Prostr^iiu's wAtie htoMty-hee^ing chest. In the 
story of Cufiiand PsycJU told in Apuleius* Golden Ass 
(transL ^^^Uiam AdKngton, x^66), Venus sends Psyche on 
a message to Proserpina, saying, " Take this box and go 
to Hdl to Proserpina, and desire her to send me a little 
of her beanty, as mnch as will serve me the space of 
one day.** Actually, however, the " mystical secret " of 
** divine beanty ** put by Pr(»erpina in the box proves to 
be ** an inficmal and dttdly sleep." 

pi 1x7. Elect iz. 

The heatfing first appeared in 1633. 

In the Stephens MS. thb E]e|y is headed, A Paradox 
tfan old Womum, In Lansd. MS. 740, f. 86, the words 
** Widow Herbert ** are prefixed to it. This is explained 
by Walton, in his Lift of George Herbert (1670), where 
be speaks of a friendship that grew up between Donne 
and Lady Herbert, mother of the poet, when she was 
residing with her eldest son, Edward Hai)ert, at Oxford, 
in about i596-i6oa He adds, '* It was that John Donne, 
who was alter Dr. Donne, and Dean of St Pauls, Lon- 
don, and he, at his leaving Oxford, writ and left there, 
in verse, a character of the beauties of her body and 
mind." Of the first he says — 

" No Spring nor Summer beauty has such grace 
As I have seen in an Autumnal Caoe." 

Of the latter he says^ 

" In an her words to every hearer fit, 
You may at revels or at councils sit." 

The rest of her character may be read in his printed 
poems, in that elegy which bears the name of the 
"Autumnal Beauty. For both he and she were then 
past the meridian of man's life. There is some confusion 
m Walton's chronology. It appears from Edward, Lord 
Herbert of Cherbui^'s Autobiography ^ that he originally 
went up to Oxford in 1593-4. He did not matriculate, 
however, according to the University Registers, until May 


^595* f^d Wood gives this date for his entry as a 

fentleman-commoner at University College. Soon after 
e was recalled home by his father's death in 1597 ; he 
married on Feb. 28, 159^, and then, he says. " not long 
after my marriage I went again to Oxford, together with 
my wife and mother, who took a house, and lived for 
some time there." This brings the date of the Elegy to 
1598 , or two or three years after, and as Donne was 
t>om in 1573, and Magdalen Newport in 1568, they were 
hardly " past the meridian of man's life." Walton also 
states that Donne was " near the fourtieth year of his 
age (which was some vears before he entered into 
sacred orders)." This also cannot be correct. Donne 
was not 40 until 1613. He was ordained in i6z|. 
Other poems from Donne to this lady will be found on 

!). 156, and vol. ii. p. 43. The poem on The Primrose 
p. £() was written at her castle near Montgomery. On 
ler life, see the note to p. 156. 

1. 29. Xerxei strange Lydiam Icve, the platane tree. 
Dr. Grosart refers to Pliny, Nat. Hist., xii. 1-3; xvi 44. 
In the 1635' 1669 editions, there comes between the 
present Elegies x. and xi. the poem "Language, thou 
art too narrow and too weak," which will be now found 
among the Epicedes and Obsequies (vol. ii. p. 93). 

p. Z2a Elegy xi. 

First printed in 1635, with the heading The BraciUt, 
The heading in the text appeared in 1650. 

The following note is taken from Ben Sanson's Con' 
versations with William Drummond (ed. D. Laing, 
Shakespeare Society, 1843)— 

" He esteemeth John Done the first poet in the world 
for some things : his verses of the Lost Chain he hath by 
heart ; and that passage of the Calme, That dust and 
feathers do not stir, all was so quiet, Affirmeth Done 
to have written all his best pieces ere he was 35 years 

I 59. some dread conjurer. The loss of a chain and 
its recovery by the aid of a conjurer is an incident in 
The Puritan, 

1. 77. An allusion to the mediaeval ninefold classifica- 
tion of angels invented by Pseudo-Dionysius, De Coelesti 

249 NVTES, 

rjt€f^ixhttu lab tiiVBfr Qcticfs vn ScTAphtiiit ChcntbiiB* 
and ThroBM; DniitMiiiMifc Virtnea* Powea ; PrinnipiilK' 

pw 13$. Elbgt xn. 

Ftm priBted in 1635. 

^ 57^ TbeM lines are not found itt the printed 
copiee. Tbey were added by Dr. Grosert in his editioa 
from the British Museum MSSu (AddL 10^309, f. 46^ 
liarL 391a f. 18. Hari. 4o64» L 249). Lanad. MS. 74a L 
105, in which the poem also oocncs» is w ith o ut them, but 
on the whole there appeats to be no reaaoit to doubt 
their amheatidty. 

p. laSk Bz«BGT xnu 

This Etesy appeared in an i mp erfee t font in 163^- 
165a Some sixty lines, indicated in the footnotes to this 
editioB, were added in 166^ In T. C. Dublin MS. G. 2. 
2i< f. 46(V this £l«y is aachbed to Sir Fraada Wnotbestar. 

p. i3Sk Elegt sit* 

FlisC printed in z6!3S- 

1. 13. Manitmi^ I suppose tiw aQnaiMS to be to the 
' ' tbunmisquearraata Oiimaera'' of Viipi» /Ijmoc^, vi 2B9» 
and not to the Carmelite Baptisia Spagooli* the " E^xid 
old Mantuan " of Love's Labour's Lost^ IV. iL 97. Both 
p)oets were bore at Mantua. 

1. 14. MasHx, Scourge: d the titieof Dekkei's pfaqr» 
the ScUiromastix^ and of Prynne's pamphhat, the Histrio^ 

p. 133. Elegy xr. 

First printed in 1635* '^^ ^'^^ appears, from the 
allusions in lines ax-ay, to be about 1609-xa 

L 21. ihg pia^img HU: cf. p. 12. The weekly bill 
of deaths by the plai;ue reached 40, during parts of every 
year from 1606 to 1610. 

I. 23. /!Ac VirgimoMpki. Espeditioiis wen sent out 
to reNOokmise Vir^pnia on Jan. i, 1607, and again in 1609. 

WartL This pirate is mentioned in Capt John Smith's 
Troveis amd Odstrvahamt (16^9, ed. Ari)er, pu 9x4) as 
"a poor Enghsh saikx," wltt *' llYcd iika a fi^ahaw in 


Barbary," some time after 1603. Daborne has a play. 
A Christian turned Turk, or the Tragical Lives and 
Deaths of the two famous Pirates, Ward and Dansiker 
(x6x3), which is taken from an account of these two 
pirates by Andrew Barker (1609). It appears from 
Etairker that Ward was notorious during 1007-9. ^^ 
head-quarters were at Tunis. He is alluded to as " that 
ocean terror" in Randolph's Epithalamium to Air. F, If, 
(Works, ed. Hazlitt, p. 571.) 

L 35. the Britain Burse, or the "New Exchange." 
opened as a rival to the Rojral Exchange, on April iz, 
1609. For some time it had very little success. 

L 37. Aldgate, The rebuilding was completed in z6oo. 

Moor-field, fields to the north of the City ; laid out in 
walks in z6o6. 

p. 156. Elegy xvi. 

This poem was included in the collection of verses 
called Underwoods, which first appeared in the second 
folio edition (1641) of Ben Jonson s works. It is No. 58 
in Cunningham's edition. I see no reason, however, to 
take it from Donne. It appeared in two editions, 1633 
and 1635, during Jonson's life; the Underwoods is 
posthumous, and of no great authority ; and both style 
and sentiment are characteristic of Donne. Many points 
in the Elegy, for histance, may be paralleled from 
Elegy xi, L 91, sqq,, from WomatCs Constancy (p. 5), 
and from The Curse (p. 43). It is signed j. D. in 
William Drammond's Hawthomden MS. 15. 

p. Z39. Elegy xvn. 

This appeared in Z635-Z660 among the Epicedes and 
Obsequies. In 1669 it is simply headed Elegy. It belongs 
more properly to the present section. It may perhaps 
be referred to 1611, with the Ijrrical poem to his wife 
headed, A Valediction forbidding Mourning {ip, 51), and 
the Song "Sweetest Love" (p. z6). See the notes to 
those poems, and compare the close of the present Elegy 
with what Walton says about Mrs. Donne's " divining 

p. Z4Z. Elegy xviil 

First printed in the Appenduc to the edition of z65a 
vol. I. 16 


242 NOTES. 

p. X44. ELVGT XIX. 

Ffartt printed with the heading among Donne's Poems 
in 1669. Bm it had previously appealed in " Wit and 
Drolkry. BNr Sir J. M.. T. &, Sir W. D., J. D. and the 
moft refined MHts of the Age. i66z." I have only given 
in the text and foot-notes the more important of the 
many variant readings of the z66z version. 

Mr. W. C Hailitt tUtes in his Handbook that pages 
95-98 of the 1669 Poems, containing Elegy six, all but 
the first two lines, and Elegy zx. , aUtxit the last ten lines, 

p. Z48. Elegy xx. 
First printed with the heading in 2669. 



Thb larffer number of these poems appeared in 1633. 
The Holy Sonnets, I, iii., v., and viii., the lines Upon the 
Translation of the Psalms (p. z88), the Ode (p. 190), the 
lines To Mr, Tilman, and the Hymn to God, my God 
(p. 9iz), were added in 1635 ; the poems to George 
lierbcrt (p. 3x4) and the translation from Gazaeus (p. 
ai6) in 1050. llie Sonnet to Lady Herbert (p. 156) is 
printed from Walton's Life of George Herbert (1670). 
This is the latest group of Donne's poems. Some at 
least of the Sonnets were probably written before 1607, 
and from them he appears to have occasionally written 
religious poems up to the last year of his life. It is 
possible to more or less definitely date a |^ood many 
of them; vis. the Annunciation and Passton (p. 170) 
in 1609, the Litany (p. 174) in i6zo, the Good Friday 
(p. X7a| in 16x3, the translation of the Lamentations 
(p. X94) in x6z7 (?), the Hymn to Christ (p. 193) in 
i6x9i tne lines Upon the Translation of the Psalms 
(p. x88) after x6ax, the Hymn to God the Father {p. 213) 
In x6a7, and the Hymn to God, my God (p. 211) in x63i. 

p. XSX. To THE E[ARL] op D[0NCASTER], 

This poem is fotmd in all the seventeenth-century editions 
amongst the l^erse Letters, headed •• To E. of D." The 
Mi title is taken from the Stephens MS. I have trans- 
ferred it to the present section. It evidently refers to the 
" La Corona" Sonnets which follow, although only six 
of them appear to have been finished when it was 

a44 NOTES. 

The beading is not quite correct, for there was no Earl 
of DoDcaster. James Hay was a Scotch gentleman who 
came to England with James, and was high in favour at 
court. He was knighted, and created successively Lord 
Hay in the Scotch peerage (1606), Lord Hay of Sawley 
Ii6z5|. Viscount Doncaster (1618), and Earl of Carlisle 
(1639). He was a courtier, at once shrewd and extrava- 
gant, rather than a statesman, but he was employed on 
several important missions, amongst them one to France 
in i6z6, and another to Germany to support the Elector 
Pabuioe in 16x9. On the latter of these occasions Donne 
accompanied him. (See notes to the Hymn to Christ, 
p. Z93. ) Hav married, firstly, Honora, daughter of Lord 
Denny (1607) ; secondly, Lucy Percy, Strsufford's Lady 
Carlisle (1617). 

La. Ct Antony and CleopatrCt IL vil 39: "Your 
serpent of Egypt is bred now of your mqd t>y the opera- 
tion of your sun : so is your crocodile." 

p. 156b To THS Lady Magdalbn Hubert* 

' Lady Herbert was by Ixrth Magdalen Newport, and 
married Sir Richard Herbert of Montgomery Oistle. 
Her husband died early, in 1597, and she devoted herself 
to the care of her children, amongst whom Edward Lord 
Herbert of Cherbury, George Herbert, and Sir Henry 
Herbert, Master of the Revels, attained distinction. On 
her friendship with Donne, see note to Elegy ix. A letter 
of Donne's preserved at Loseley ends as follows, '* From 
Sir John Danvers' house a( Chelsey (of which house and 
my lord Carlils at Han worth I mal^e up my Tusculum), 
13. JuUL 1625." In 1608 she took, as her second husband. 
Sir John Danvers. In 1637, Donne preached her funeral 
sermon, which was afterwards published with some Greek 
and Latin verses by her son George. 

This sonnet is not in any of the seventeenth-centuiy 
editions of Donne, but it is given in WaJton's Life of 
George Herbert (1670), vdth ^is accompanying letter : 


" Your favours to me are every where ; I use 
them, and have them. I enjoy them at London, and 
leave them there, and yet find them at Mitcham. Such 



riddles as these become thin^ unexpressible ; and such 
is your goodness. I was almost sorry to find your 
servant here this day, because I was loth to have any 
witness of my not coming home last night, and indeed 
of my coming this morning : but mv not coming was ex- 
cusable, because earnest business cietained me, and my 
coming this day is by the example of your S. Mary 
Magdalen, who ruse early upon Sunday to seek that 
which she loved most, and so did I. And, from her and 
myself, I return such thanks as are due to one to whom 
we owe all the good opinion that they whom we need 
most have of us. By this messenger, and on this good 
dav, I commit the enclosed holy hymns and sonnets 
(which for the matter, not the workmanship, have yet 
escaped the fire) to your judgment, and to vour protec- 
tion too, if you think them worthy of it, and I have ap- 
pointed this enclosed sonnet to usher them to your happy . 

*' Your unworthiest servant, 
" Unless your accepting him 
" Have mended him, 

••Jo. DONNB. 
•*Mit€hamtJuiy xx, X607." 

Walton adds: "These hymns are now lost to us, bat 
doubtless they were such as they two now sing in heaven." 
This would seem to imply that the •• Holy Sonneu" 
which follow were not those sent to Ladv Herbert, but 
some later ones. But Walton may be reierring to some 
lost hymns, as distinguished from the sonnets ; and in 
any case, this poem will serve as a preface to Uie rest of 
Donne's religious verse. In Harl. 4955, the divine 
sonnets (Holy^ Sonnets and La Corona) are said to have 
been " made 90 years since." The MS. includes a poem 
dated z6^. 

1. 3. oethinat Bethany: Magdalo^ the castle of 
Mi^dol, from which the name Magdalene may have been 

1. 8. It is not a question whether there was more than 
one Magdalen, but rather whether Mary Magdalene, 
•'out of whom Jesus cast seven devils," is identical with 
Mary of Bethanyi the tinner who anointed his feet and 

I N 

246 NOTES. 

wiped them with the hair of her head in the house of 
Simon Uie leper. They are treated as one in Vaughan's 
poem, St, Mary Magdalene, 

p. 157. Holy Sonnet& 

Of these Holy Sonnets, i., iii., ▼., viiL, and zL were first 
printed in 1635, the rest in 1633. 

p. 163. Sonnet x. 

1. X. This sonnet is probably earlier than the palinode 
in the Elegy on Mrs, Bimlstred (vol. ii. p. 89) — 

" Death, I recant, and say, ' Unsaid by me, 
Whate'er bath slipp'd, that might diminish thee.' 

Some have called thee so, Cf. the address to ' ' eloquent, 
just, and mighty Death," at the close of Sir Walter 
Raleigh's History of the World, This however is prob- 
ably later than Donne's sonnet 

p. Z69. Resurrection. 

I. 14. tincture. Cf. the note to elixir (page 41) ; and 
the following stanxa from George Herbert's poem The 
Elixir — 

'* All may of thee partake : 
Nothing can be so mean 
Which with this tincture, for Thy sake. 
Will not grow bright and clean." 

A variant reading is " His tincture." 

p. zja The Annunciation and Passion. 

The Stephens MS. has for title, " Upon the Annunci- 
ation and Passion falling upon one day 1608." The date 
of the poem will therefore be March 35, z6o). Sir John 
Beaumont has a poem " Upon the two great feasts of 
the Annunciation and Resurrection falling on the same 
day, March 25, 1627," and George Herbert one in Latin, 
In Natales et Pascha concurrentes. I observe that Dr. 
Grosart translates Natales by *' Annunciation," and 



Paseha by " Pas^on/' and states that Donne's poem and 
Geoi^e Herbert's "probably were both written on the 
same occasion." See his editions both of Donne and 

p. Z72. Good-Fridat, 1613, RiDiNQ Westward. 

In Addl. MS. 25,707, f. 36, this poem is headed—** Mr. 
J, Dim, going from Sir HfenryJ Gfoodyere] : on Good- 
"Friday sent him back this Meditation on the way." In 
HarL MS. 4955, f. no, it is " Riding to Sir Edward 
Herbert in Wales." Sir Henry Goodyere's house was at 
Polesworth in Warwickshire. 

p. X74. A LiTANT. 

Dr. Grosart tries to make out that this Litany was one 
of Donne's earliest poems. As a matter of fact its date 
can be more or less precisely fixed by Donne's corr^ 
spondence. In a letter to Sir Henry Goodyere (Alford, vi. 
3x1) he speaks of it as follows — 

" Since my imprisonment in my bed, I have made a 
meditation in verse, which I call a Litany ; the word you 
know imports no other than supplication, but all churches 
have one form of supplication, by that name. Amongst 
ancient annals, I mean some eight hundred years, I have 
met two Litanies in Latin verse, which gave me not the 
reason of my meditations, for in good faith I thought not 
upon them then, but they give me a defence, if any man, 
to a layman, and a private, impute it as a fault, to take 
such divine and public names, to his own little Uioughts. 
The first of them was made by Ratpertus, a moi^ of 
Suevia ; and the other by S. Notker, of whom I will 
give you this note by the way, that he is a private saint, 
lor a few parishes ; they were both but monks, and the 
Litanies poor and barbarous enough ; yet Pope Nicholas 
V. valued their devotion so much, that he canonized 
both their poems, and commanded them for public 
service in their churches : mine is for lesser chapels, 
which are my friends, and though a copy of it were due 
to you, now, yet I am so unable to serve myself with 
writing it for you at this time (being some thirty staves 
of nine lines), that I must entreat you to take a promise 

348 NOTES. 

that ton shall have the first, for a testimony of that duty 
whicn I owe to jrour love, and to inyself, who am bound 
to cherish it by my best offices. That by which it will 
deserve best acceptation, is that neither the Roman 
diurch need call it defective, because it abhors not the 
particohur mention of the blessed triumphers in heaven ; 
nor the Reformed can discreetly accuse it, of attritxiting 
more than a rectified devotion ought to do." 

The letter can be dated by the mention of a book of 
his, apparently the Pseudo-Martyr ^ as still in MS. It 
was printed in z6ia 

p. z88. Upon the Translation of the Psalms 

BT Six Philip Sidney and the Countess of 

Pembroke, His Sister. 

Fhst printed in 1635. These Psalms, of which i. — 
xliiL are by Sir Philip Sidney, the rest by Lady Pem- 
broke, remained in MS. until 1823, when they were pub- 
lished from a copy in the autograph of John Davies of 
Hereford. They are also to be found m BodU Rawl. 
Poet MS. 35, Brit Mus., AddL MSS. 12,047 ^ci 
13,048, and a MS. in Trin. ColL Camb. It appears from 
L 53 that Donne's verses were written after LiEuly Pem- 
broke's death in 1621. 

p. Z9a Ode. 

First printed in 1635. In Rawl. Poet. MS. 31, f. 13, 
it is said to have been written to George Herbert. 

p. Z9Z. To Mr. Tilman, after he had taken 


First printed in 1635. 

p. 193. A Hymn to Christ, at the Author's 
last going into Germany. 

This going into Germany was on a mission with the 
Eari of Doncaster, after the elecdon of the Palsgrave as 
King of Bohemia, in 16x9. 


p, Z94. The Lamentations of Jeremt, for the 


This poem probably dates from the death of Donne's 
wife in 1617. Walton ( 1658) speaks of the great grief into 
which he fell. *' Thus, as the Israelites sat mourning by 
the waters of Babylon, when they remember«l Sion, so 
he gave some ease to his oppressed heart by thus vent- 
ing his sorrows : thus he began the day and ended the 
night, ended the restless night and began the weary day 
in lamentations." Ife adds : " His first motion from his 
house to preach where his beloved wife lay buried, in St. 
Clement's Church, near Temple Bar, London ; and his 
text was a part of the prophet Jeremy's LamentatioD, 
' Lo, I am the man that have seen afiUction,' " 

p. 21 z. Hymn to God, my God, in my Sicknessl 

First printed in 1635. 

Walton iLife^ ed. 1670) states that this hymn was 
written on Donne's death^bed. He quotes stanzas z and 
6, and the first two and a half lines of stanza 2, with the 
date March 23, 1637. A copy amongst Sir Julius 
Caesar'r papers (AddL MS. 34,324, f. 316) is endorsed 
" D. Dun, Dean of Paul's, his verses in fajs great sickness 
in December 1623." 

Tremellius : Emanuel Tremellius (15ZO-Z580) pub- 
lished a Latin translation of the Bible at Frankfort,, in 


p. 213. A Hymn to God the Father. 

This hymn is quoted by Walton, not in the Z640, but 
in the 1670 edition of the Life. Walton says : " Even on 
his former sickbed [in 1623] he wrote this heavenly hymn, 
expressing the great joy that then possessed his soul, in 
the assurance of God's favour to him when he composed 

He adds : " I have the rather mentioned this hymn, for 
that he caused it to be set to a most grave and solemn 
tune, and to be often sung to the organ by the choristers 
of St. Paul's Church in his own hearing ; especially at 

aso NOTES. 

the evening tenrioe. and at his return from his customary 
devotions In that place did occasionally say to a friend : 
' The WQids of this hymn have restored to me the same 
thougfati of joy that possessed my soul in my sickness 
when I composed it. And, O the power of church 
nmsic I that harmony added to this hymn has raised the 
affections of my heart and quickened my graces of seal 
and gradtude ; and I observe that I always return from 
payii^^ this public duty of prayer and i»aise to God, with 
an ttnezpnBBsible tranquillity of mind, and a willingness 
to leave the world."* 

This poem appears In Brit Mus. Eg. MS. 2013, 1 13, 
aet to music by John Hillton, and beginning, " Wut thou 
forgive the sins where I begun." I do not imow whether 
this was the setting used at St Fanl's The date of the 
MS. is probably before 1644. 

The ' ' former sickbed " mentioned by Walton is doubt- 
less that of the fifty-fourth year of his a^e, 1623, upon 
wluch he also composed his Book of Devotions, 

p. 8x4. To George Herbert. 

First printed in x65a 

Walton (Ltfe, 167^) has a passage on the friendship 
b e tw een Donne and George Herbert He says— 

** Betwixt this Geofge Herbert and Dr. Donne, there 
was a long and dear friendship, made up by such a 
■ympathy of inclinations that thc^ coveted and joyed to 
lie in each other^s company ; and this happy friendship 
was still maintained l^ many sacred endearments, of 
which that which foUoweth may be some testimony." 
He then eoes on to quote the first two and a half lines of 
Donne's Latin poem, and the whole of the English one ; 
together with portions of answering poems by George 
Herbert, which are printed in full in the 1650 edition of 
Donne. I add them hece— 

In Sacram Anchoram Piscatoris G, Herbert* 

Quod crux nequibat fixa, davique addita~> 
TcBcre Christum sdlioet, ne asoenderet— 



Toive Christum devocans faaindia 
Ultra loquendi tempus ; addit Andiom : 
Nee hoc abunde est tibi, nisi certae ancfaorae 
Addas Sigillum ; nempe symbolum suae 
Tibi debet unda et terra certitudinis. 
Quondam fessus Amor, loquens amatOb 
Tot et tanta loquens arnica, scripsit : 
Tandem et fessa manus dedit SigilhmL 

Soavis emt, qui scripta, dolens, lacerando redudi, 
Sanctius in resno magni credebat Amoris, 
In quo fas nimi est rumpi, donare Sigillum I 

Munde, fluas fiigiasque licet, nos nostiaque fixi : 
Deridet motus sancta catena tuoSb 

This is followed by an Engiidi venion. 

Although the Cross could not Christ here detain, 
Though nail'd unto it, tmt He ascends acain, 
Nor yet thy eloouence here ken> Him stul, 
But only while tnou speakest, this Anchor will. 
Nor canst thou be content, unless thou to 
This certain Anchor add a Seal ; and so 
The water and the earth both unto thee 
Do owe the symbol of their certainty. 

When Love, being weary, made an end 
Of kind expressions to his friend, 
He writ ; when 's hand could write no more, 
He gave the Seal, and so left o'er. 

How sweet a friend was he. who, being grieved 
His letters were broke rudely up, believed 
'Twas more secure in great Love's commonweal 
Where nothing should be broke, to add a Seal \ 

Let the world reel, we and all ours stand sure ; 
This holy cable 's of all storms secure. 

The following is from Walton's Life of George Herbert 
(1670) — "I shall therefore add only one testimony to 
what is also mentioned in the Life of Dr, Donne, umiy* 

252 NOTES. 

that a little before his death he caused many seals to be 
made, and in them to be en^ven the figure of Christ 
crucified on an anchor — ^which is the emblem of hope 
— 4md of which Dr. Donne would often say Crux miki 
OMckara. These seals he sent to most of those friends on 
which he put a value ; and at Mr. Herbert's death these 
verses were found wrapped up with that seal which was 
by the Doctor given to him : 

When my dear fiiend could write no more, 
He gave this Seal, and so gave o'er. 
When winds and waves rose highest, I am sure, 
This Anchor keqM my faith, that, me secure. 

Some of these seals, including that given to Walton 
himself, have been handed down to our day. See Noies 
and Queries (and Series, viii 170^ 216 ; 6th Series, x. 

426, 473)- 

The uuin versioo of George Herbert's verses is also 
found with the Jacula Prudentum (1651), a volume con- 
sisting mostly of "Outlandish Proverbs" collected by 
Herbert, and reprinted from the 1640 edition of Wifs 
RecreaHons. It is also in Herbert's Poems. Doubtless 
the English version is his alsa 

p. 2x6. Translated out of Gazasus, " Vota 
Amxco Facta,'* fol. z6a 

First printed in i6^a 

Ente de Gaza, at the end of the fifth century, wrote a 
dialogue on Immortality and the Resurrection, called 
Theophrastus, An edition was published at Zurich in 



.y. /•"