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Giving new light on the pre-Sonnet period ; showing 
the inception of relations between Shakespeare 
and the Earl of Southampton 
and displaying 







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"THE purpose of playing, whose end, both .at 
the first and noxv, was, and is, to hold, as 
'twere, the mirror up to nature ; to shoxv virtue 
her own feature, scorn her own image, and 
the very age and body of the time his form 
and pressure." 
15ramleL Act III. Scene il. 



II. THE STRATFORD DAYS, I564-I586 . . 19 
1586-I 59I • 38 
1591-1594 • 72 
I. Dedication of Florio's Second Fruiles, I59I 223 
2. Address to the Reader from Florio's Second :ruiles, 
I591 229 
3- Dedication of Florio's bVor/de af IVordes, 1598 233 
4. Address to the Reader from Florio's IVorlde af 
kVordcs, 1598 242 
5- John Florio's Will, 1625 252 
INDEX . . . 257 







T HE most interesting and important fifteen years in 
the records of English dramatic literature are un- 
doubtedly those between 1588 and 16o3, within 
which limit all of Shakespeare's poems and the majority 
of his plays were written ; yet no exhaustive Eglish history, 
intelligently co-ordinating the social, literary, and political 
life of this period, has ever been written. 
Froude, the keynote of whose historical work îs contained 
in his assertion that "the Reformation was the root and 
source of the expansive force which has spread the Anglo- 
Saxon race over the globe," recognising a logical and 
dramatic climax for his argument in the defeat of the 
Spanish Armada in 1588, ends his history in that year; 
while Gardiner, whose historical interest was as much 
absorbed by the Puritan Revolution as was Froude's by 
the Reformation, finds a fitting beginning for his subject in 
the accession of James I. in 16o3. Thus an historical hiatus 
is left which has never been exhaustively examined. To the 

resulting lack of a clearIy defined historical background for 
those years on the part of Shakespearean critics and com- 
pilers--who are not as a rule also students of original sources 
of history--may be imputed much of the haziness which still 
exists regarding Shakespeare's relations to, and the manner 
in which his work may have been influenced by, the literary, 
social, and political lire of this period. 
The defeat of the Armada ended a long period of threat- 
cned danger for England, and the following fifteen years of 
Elizabeth's reign were passed in comparative security. The 
social lire of London and the Court now took on, by com- 
parison with the troubled past, an almost Augustan phase. 
During these years poetry and the drama flourished in 
England as thcy never did before, or since, in any such space 
of time. Within a few years of the beginning of this rime 
Shakespeare became the principal writer for, and later on a 
sharer in, a company of players which, at about the same 
tîme, was chosen as the favourite Court company ; a position 
which--under various titles--it continued to hold thereaffer- 
wards for over forty years. 
When we compare the plays of Shakespeare with those 
of his contemporaries and immediate successors, it becomes 
evident that this dominant position was maintained by his 
company largely through the superior merit of his work 
while he lived, and by the prestige he had attained for it 
after he had passed away. 
In the rime of Elizabeth the stage was one 
of the principal vehicles for the reflection of opinion con- 
cerning matters of public interest; the players being, in 
Shakespeare's phrase, "the abstract and brief chronicles of 
the time." The fact that laws were passed and Orders in 
Council issued prohibiting the representation of matters 


of Church or State upon the stage, clearly implies the pre- 
valence of such representations. It is altogether unlikely 
that the most popular dramatist of the day should, in 
this phase of his art, have remained an exception to the 
I hold it to have been impossible that such an ardent 
Englishman as Shakespeare, one also so deeply interested 
in human motive, character, and action, should bave lived 
during these fifteen years in the heart of English literary 
and political life,--coming, through his professional interests, 
frequently and closely in contact with certain of its central 
figures,--and should during this interval have written twenty 
original plays, three long poems, and over one hundred and 
fifty sonnets, without leaving in this work deciphcrable 
reflections of the characters and movements of his rime. 
That these conscious, or unconscious, reflections have hot 
long ago been recognised and interpreted I impute to 
the lack of an intimate knowledge of contemporary 
history on the part of the majority of his critics and 
Competent text critics, in their efforts to establish the 
chronological order of the dramas, bave long since displayed 
the facts that Shakespeare's earlier original plays were largely 
comedies of a joyous nature, and that, as the years pass, his 
work becomes more serious and philosophical; in time 
developing into the pessimistic bitterness of Lear and 
Timon of Atkens, but softening and lightening, at the end 
of his career, in the gravely reflective but kindly mood 
of Cymbdine, A Winter's Tale, and The Tempest; yet no 
serious attempt bas evei been ruade to trace and demonstrate 
in the personal contact of the writer with concurrent life the 
underl¥ing spiritual causes of these very palpable changes in 


his expression of it. Until this is done no adequate life 
of Shakespeare can be written. 1 
Now, in order tobe enabled to find in Shakespeare's 
personal observation and experience the well-springs of the 
plainly developing and deepening reflections of human life in 
action, so evident in his dramas when studied chronologically, 
a sound knowledge of contemporary social, literary, and 
political history is the first essential; possessing this, the 
serious student will soon remise in the likenesses between 
Shakespeare's dramatic expression, and his concurrent 
possibilities of observation and experience, that he portrayed 
life as he himself saw and felt it, and that he used the old 
and hackneyed stories and chronicles which he selected for 
lais plots, not because he lacked the power of dramatic 
construction, but in order to hide the underlying purposes 
of his plays from the public censor. While no intelligent 
student needs any other warrant for this belief than the 
plays themselves, when chronologically co-ordinated with 
even an elementary knowledge of the hîstory of the period, 
we have Shakespeare's own assertion that thîs was the 
actual method and spirit of his work. When he tells us in 
Itamlet that "the purpose of playing, whose end, both at the 
first and now, was, and fs, to hold, as 'twere, the mirror up to 
nature; to show virtue her own feature, scorn her own 
image, and the vey age and body of tke lime his form and 
pressure," he is not attempting fo describe the dramatic 
methods of ancient Denmark, but is definitely expounding 
a Dr. Georg Brandes' ICillia»t Shakespeare : 4 Critical Study, is by far the 
best attempt at an interpretation of Shakespeare's plays upon spiritual lines that 
bas yet been ruade ; but the biographical value of this excellent analysis is in- 
volved by the faet that Dr. Brandes, at the rime he wrote,--now over thirty years 
ago,--accepted Thomas Tyler's Pembroke-Fitton theory of the sonnets, and with 
it the distorted chronology for the plays of the Sonnet period, whieh it necessarily 


the functions of dramatic exposition as they prevailed in 
actual use in his own day, and as he himself had then 
exercised them for over ten years. 
Any attempt to visualise Shakespeare in his contemporary 
environment, and spiritually to link his work year by year 
with the life of his time, would be impossible unless there 
can first be attained a far clearer idea than now exists of his 
theatrical connections, the inception of his dramatic work, 
and of the literary and social affiliations he formed and 
antagonisms he aroused, during his first six or eight years in 
London. The purpose of this book is--by casting new 
light upon this period of Shakespeare's career--to show the 
inception and development of conditions and influences 
which continued from that time forward materially to affect 
his and his friends' lives, and in turn to shape and colour the 
expression of life in action which he gives us in his works. 
Though there is nothing known definitely concerning 
Shakespeare between 1587--when his naine is mentioned 
in a legal document at Stratford regarding the transfer of 
property in which he held a contingent interest and which 
possibly infers his presence in Stratford at that date--and 
 592, when Robert Greene alludes to him in his posthumously 
published A Groatswortlt of Wit, it is usually assumed that 
he left Stratford in I586 or I587 with a company of players, 
or else that he joined a company in London at about that 
As the Earl of Leicester's company is recorded as having 
visited Stratford-upon-Avon in 1587, -- some rime before 
I4th June,--and as James Burbage, the father of Richard 
Burbage, with whom we find Shakespeare closely affiliated 
in later years, was manager of the Erl of Leicester's company 
as late as I575,--the year before he built the Theatre at 


Shoreditch,--it is generally assumed that he was still 
manager of this company in I586-87, and that Shakespeare 
became connected with him by joining Leicester's company 
at this time. This assumption is, however, somewhat involved 
by another, nebulously held by some critics, i.e., that James 
Burbage severed his connection with Leicester's company in 
I583, and joined the Queen's company, and that the latter 
company played under his management at the Theatre in 
Shoreditch for several years afterwards. It is further 
involved by the equally erroneous assumption that Burbage 
managed the Curtain along with the Theatre between x585 
and :r592.1 
Certain biographical compilers also assert that Shake- 
speare, having joined the Earl of Leicester's company, 
continued to be connected with it under its supposed vary- 
ing titles until the end of his London career, and that he 
was never associated with any other company. They 
assume that Leicester's company merged with Lord Strange's 
company of acrobats in 1589, the combination becoming 
known as Lord Strange's players; and that when this 
company left James Burbage and the Theatre, in I592, for 
Philip Henslowe and the Rose Theatre, that Shakespeare 
accompanied them and worked for Henslowe both as a 
writer and an actor. They suppose that Edward Alleyn 
became the manager of a combination of the Admiral's 
company and Strange's men for a "short period," but that 
the companies "soon parted," "Strange's men continuing 
with Henslowe for a prolonged period."  It is also asserted 
that "the Rose Theatre was the first scene of Shakespeare's 
successes alike as an actor and a dramatist," and that he 
1A Life o[ IVilliam Shakes;eare, by Sir Sidney Lee, I916, p. 59- 
e lbid. 6. 


"helped in the authorship of Tire First Part of tfenry VI., 
with which Lord Strange's company scored a triumphant 
success in 1592." 1 
These assumptions, which were advanced tentatively by 
former scholars and merely as working hypotheses, have 
now, by repetition and the dogmatic dicta of biographical 
compilers, corne to be accepted by the uncritical as 
ascertained facts. 
While it is now generally accepted that Greene's "Shake- 
scene" alludes to Shakespeare, and that his parody of a line 
from Tire True Tragedie : 
" O Tyger's heart wrapt in a Player's hide" 
denotes some connection of Shakespeare's with either T]e 
True Tragedie of the Duke of York, or with The Tldrd Part 
of Henry VI. belote September I592, when Greene died, 
and while the title-page of the first issue of The True 
Traffedie of the Duke of York informs us that this play was 
acted by the Earl of Pembroke's company, and no mention 
of the play appears in the records of Henslowe, under 
whose financial management Shakespeare is supposed to 
have been working with Strange's company in 1592, notltinff 
bas ever been done to elucidate Slzakespeare's evident connection 
with t]ds play or witk the Earl of Pembroke's coaany at this 
In the saine yearmi 592mNashe refers to the performance 
by Lord Strange's company under Henslowe of Tire First 
Part of Henry VI., and praises the work of the dramatist 
who had recently incorporated the Talbot scenes, which are 
plainly the work of a different hand from the bulk of the 
remainder of the play. This also is generally accepted as a 
 A Lire of William Shakes2eare , by Sir Sidney Lee, I916, pp. 6I, 55- 

reference to Shakespeare and as indicating his connection 
with Henslowe as a writer for the stage. It is erroneously 
inferred from this supposed evidence, and from the fact that 
Richard Burbage was with Strange's company in I502, that 
Shakespeare also acted with and wrote for this company 
under Henslowe. 
No explanation has ever been given for the palpable fact 
that hot one of the plays written by Shakespeare--the com- 
position of which all competent text critics impute to the 
years ISO 1 to IS04--is mentioned in Henslowe's .Diar.y as 
having been presented upon his boards. It is generally 
agreed that The Co»zedy of Errors, Kizg ]oltn, Richard 
Love's Labour's Lost, Love's Laboul; s I['oz, The Two GentIeuen 
of Verona, Richard111., and l[idsunze 1Vht s Dreau, were 
ail produced before the end of 1594, yet there is no record 
nor mention of any one of these plays in Henslowe's 1)ia7, 
which gives a very full list of the performances at the Rose 
and the plays presented between 1 59 2 and 1594. 
During the saine years in which records of Shakespeare 
are lacking 1 they are also very limited regarding Eward 
Alleyn, whose reputation as an actor and whose leadership 
in his profession were won during these years--I586--92. 
Nothing is at present known concerning him between 1584, 
when he is mentioned in the Leicester records as a member 
of the Earl of Worcester's company, and 3rd January 1589, 
when he bought Richard Jones' share of theatrical properties, 
owned conjointly by Edward Alleyn, John Alleyn, Robert 
Browne, and Richard Jones, As Edward Alleyn, Robert 
Browne, and Richard Jones were ai1 members of Worcester's 
company in 1584, it is erroneously assumed that they were 
1 ,, ]3etween I586 and I592 we lose ail trace of Shakespeare." ITilliam 
Shakespeare : ,4 Critical Study, Georg Brandes» p. 18. 


still Worcester's men in 1589, and that it was Jones' share in 
the Worcester properties that Alleyn bought at this rime 
to take with him to the Admiral's company, which he is 
consequently supposed to have joined some rime between 
1589 and 1592. The next record we have of Alleyn is his 
marriage to Joan Woodward, Henslowe's stepdaughter, in 
October 1592. In the following May we find him managing 
Lord Strange's company in the provinces, though styling 
himself a Lord Admiral's man. lffhere, t]en, was Edward 
tlleyn between 1585 and 1589; where 3etween I589 and 
1593; and wI¢en did he 3ecome a Lord Admiral's man ? 
Worcester's company, with which Alleyn was connected 
in I584, is last mentioned in the records as appearing at 
Barnstaple in 1585 ;1 it then disappears from view for rive 
years, and is next mentioned in the provincial records as 
appearing at Coventry in 159o. 2 Between 159o and 16o 3 it 
is mentioned regularly in the provincial records. Vhere 
was I/Vorcester's coany between 1585 and 159o ? 
I propose to demonstrate by new evidence and analysis 
that James Burbage ceased to be an active member of 
Leicester's company soon after he took on the responsi- 
bilities of the management of the Theatre; but continued 
his theatrical employees under Leicester's protection as 
Lord Leicester's musicians until 1582, when he began to 
work under the licence of Lord Hunsdon, his company being 
composed of his own employees and largely of musicians, 
to act as an adjunct to the companies to whom, from rime 
to rime, he let the use of the Theatre during the absence in 
the provinces of the companies, such as Leicester's and the 

 English Dramalic Comibanies, I558-I64 I, vol. i. p. 57- 
" lbid. 

By John Tucker 


Admiral's, with which I shall give evidence he held more 
permanent aflïliations, and, seeing that he was owner and 
manager of the Theatre, that these affiliations were some- 
what similar to those maintained by Henslowe--the owner 
of the Rose Theatre--with Lord Strange's company between 
I592 and I594, and with the Lord Admiral's, and other 
companies, at the several theatres he controlled in later 
years. I shall indicate that from the rime Burbage built 
the Theatre in I576 until early in I585, he maintained such 
a connection with Leicester's company, and shall show that 
the disruption of this company in I585 by the departure of 
seven of their principal members for the Continent--where 
they remained until July I587--necessitated a similar con- 
nection with some other good company to take its place, and 
that he now secured Edward Alleyn and his fellows, who, 
ceasing to be Worcester's men at this time, and securing the 
licence of the Lord _Admiral, aflïliated themselves with the 
remnant of Leicester's men and joined Burbage and Lord 
Hunsdon's men at the Theatre. In this year the latter 
became the Lord Chamberlain's men through the elevation 
of Lord Hunsdon to that office. These companies, while 
retaining individual licences, continued to play when in 
London as one company until the end of 1588, or beginning 
of I589, when another reorganisation took place, a number 
of the old men being eliminated and new blood beîng taken 
in from the restored Leicester company and Lord Strange's 
company of youthful acrobats, who had now become men. 
I shall give evidence that this organisation continued to 
work as one company for the next three years, though the 
Admiral's men still retained their own licence, and con- 
sequently that the company as a whole is at rimes mentioned 
in both Court and provincial records under one title and at 


times under the other. The principal reason that a number 
of companies, combining at a London theatre as one com- 
pany, preserved their several licences was no doubt the 
greater protection afforded them by the patronage of 
several powerful noblemen against the hostility of puri- 
tanically inclined municipal authorities. Recorder Fleet- 
wood, who was noted as an enemy of the players, in his 
weekly reports on civic affairs to Lord Burghley, frequently 
complains of the stoppage by Court influence of his prosecu- 
tions of alleged offenders. Upon one occasion he writes: 
"When the Court is farthest from London then is the best 
justice done in England." 
Some time between the beginning of 159I and the end of 
that year, James Burbage's disfavour with certain of the 
authorities, as well as legal and financial difficulties in which 
he became involved, made it necessary for the combined 
companies, which in December 1591 had attained to the 
position of the favourite Court company, to seek more con- 
renient quarters and stronger financial backing than Burbage 
and the Theatre afforded. Under its various titles Strange's 
company continued to be the leading Court company for 
the next forty years. I shall indicate the probability that 
Strange's company in supplanting the Queen's company at 
Court at this time also suflplanted il at the Rose T/teatre, 
which was built by Henslowe in I587 as a theatre. 1 Hens- 
lowe repaired and reconstructed it late in I59I and early 
in I592 for the uses of Strange's men. I will show the 
unlikelihood that this was Henslowe's first venture in 
theatrical affairs, and the probability that the Queen's 
players, under his financial management, occupied the Rose 
i It is probable that previous to I587 the Rose was an inn used for theatrical 


Theatre from the rime it was built in  587 until they were 
superseded by Strange's men in 59I. 
I shall also give evidence that Shakespeare did not 
accompany Strange's men to Henslowe and the Rose, but 
that he remained with ]3urbage, who backed him in the 
formation of Pembroke's company, and that he and Marlowe 
wrote for this company until Marlowe was killed in 593, 
and that Shakespeare was probably its sole provider of 
plays from the time of Marlowe's death until the company 
disrupted early in 594- I shall show further that during 
the time Shakespeare and Marlowe wrote for Pembroke's 
company, and for some years later, George Peele revised old 
and wrote new plays for Henslowe and Alleyn, and that it 
was he that revised Henry VI. and introduced the Talbot 
scene in I592, and consequently that it was to Peele, and 
hot to Shakespeare, that Nashe's praises were given at this 
rime. Evidence shall be given to show that Nashe was 
antagonistic to Shakespeare and co-operated with Greene 
against him at this period. 
It shall be made clear that Titus Andronicus, which was 
acted as a new play by Sussex's company under Henslowe 
on 23rd January 1594, was also written by Peele, or re- 
written from Titus and Uesjasian, which is now lost, but 
which--being written for Strange's men in the previous 
year--we may assume was also Peele's, or else his first 
revision of a stilI older play. 
Some rime before the middle of 594 a new reorganisa- 
tion of companies took place, the Admiral's and the Lord 
Chamberlain's separating and absorbing men from Pem- 
broke's and Sussex's companies, which ceased to exist as 
active entities at this rime, though a portion of Pembroke's 
men--while working with the Admiral's men between 594 


and i597--retained their own licence and attempted to 
operate separately in the latter year, but, failing, returned 
to Henslowe and became Admiral's men. A few of their 
members whom Langley, the manager of the Swan Theatre, 
had taken from them, struggled on as Pembroke's men for a 
year or two and finally disappeared from the records. 
A consideration of the affairs of Lord Strange's men-- 
now the Lord Chamberlain's men--while under Henslowe's 
financial management between 1599. and 1594, and of Pem- 
broke's company's circumstances during the saine period, 
with their enforced provincial tours owing to the plague 
in London, will show that these were lean years for both 
organisations, and for the men conposing them; yet in 
Dccember I594--as is shown by the Court records of )[arch 
 595--Shakespeare altears as a leading" sharer in one of the 
most importaut theatrical co»anies in England. I shall 
advance evidence to show that his position in this powerful 
compan¥, and its apparent prosperit¥ at this rime, were 
due to financial assistance accorded him in 1594 b¥ his 
patron, the Earl of Southampton, to whom in this year 
he dedicated Luo'ece, and in the preceding year Uenus and 
If these hypotheses be demonstrated it shall appear that 
though Shakespeare, as Burbage's employee in the conduct 
of the Theatre, had theatrical relations with the Earl of 
Leicester's company that he was not a member of that 
company, and that if he may be regarded as having become 
a member of any company in I586-87, when he came to 
London, he was a member of the Lord Chamberlain's 
company,which was owned by James Burbage,but as a 
bonded and hired servaut or servitor to James Burbag'e for 
a terre of years which ended in about 1589; that his work 


with Burbage from the time he entered his service was of a 
general nature, and more of a literary and dramatic than of 
an histrionic character, though it undoubtedly partook of both ; 
that he worked in conjunction with both Richard Burbage 
and Edward Alleyn from the rime he came to London in 
I586-87 until I59I; that neither he nor Burbage were con- 
nected with the Queen's company, nor with the Curtain 
Theatre, during these years, and tka! the ownerski by the 
Burbage organisation of a number of old Queen's plays 
resulted from their absorption of Queen's zen in 159I, when 
Pe»ebroke's co»any was for»ed, and hot frora the supposed 
fact that James Burbage was at any rime a member or the 
zanager of the Queen's comany ; that Robert Greene's attack 
upon Shakespeare as "the onely Shake-scene," in 159-% was 
directed at him as the manager of Pembroke's company; 
that the Rose Theatre was not "the scene of Shakespeare's 
pronounced success, both as a writer and a dramatist," and 
tkat lu fact ke eever was connected witk that tkeatre, nor wit]t 
Henslowe, either as a writer or an actor ; that Nashe's lauda- 
tion of the Talbot scenes in Henry VI. was complimentary 
to his friend Peele, and that whatever additions Shakespeare 
may have ruade to this play were made after he rejoined 
the Lord Chamberlain's men in I594; that he had no hand 
in the composition of Titus Andronicus, acted by Sussex's 
company and published in I594, which is the saine as that 
now generally included in Shakespeare's plays; and finally 
that his business ability and social and dramatic prestige 
restored Burbage's waning fortunes and enabled his new 
organisation to compete successfully with the superior 
political favour and financial power of Henslowe and Alleyn, 
and started it upon its prolonged career of Court and public 


As a clear conception of Shakespeare's theatrical affilia- 
tions between I586 and I594 has hOt hitherto been realised 
so a knowledge of his relations with contemporary writers 
during his entire career still remains nebulous. Greene's 
attack in 159:2 in A Groatsworth of Wit and Chettle's 
apology are the only things regarding Shakespeare's early 
relations with other writers that have been generally 
accepted by critics. Until the publication of Shakespeare 
and the Rival Poet in 9o3, nothing was known of his pro- 
longed enmity with Chapman ; while the name of Matthew 
Roydon was unmentioned in connection with Shakespearean 
affairs until I913.1 The revelations of the present volume 
regarding the enmity between Florio and Shakespeare, and 
Shakespeare's dramatic characterisations of Florio, have 
never been anticipated, though the possibility that they may 
have corne at odds has been apprehended. The Rev. J. H. 
Halpin suggested in 856 that the "H. S." attacked by 
Florio in his Worlde of Wordes in I59O may have been 
directed at Shakespeare, but advanced no evidence to 
support his theory, which has since been relegated by the 
critics to the limbo of fanciful conjecture. I was not aware 
of Mr. Halpin's suggestion when I reached my present 
There has hitherto been no suspicion whatever on the 
part of critics that anything of the nature of a continuous 
collusion between the scholars existed against Shakespeare 
in these early years, and consequently, when at a later 
period it was manifested in plays presented upon rival 
stages, it was regarded as a new development and named 
"The War of the Theatres"; but even this open phase of 
the antagonism and the respective sides taken by its par- 
 2Iistress 23avenant, the Z)ark Lady of Shakespeare's Sonnets. 


ticipants are still misunderstood. This critical opacity is 
due largely to the fact that Shakespearean criticism has for 
many years been regarded as the province of academic 
specialists in literature who have neglected the social and 
political history of Shakespeare's day as outside their line of 
specialisation. It was probably Froude's recognition of this 
nebulous condition in Shakespearean criticism that deterred 
him from continuing his history to the end of the reign of 
Elizabeth, and prevented Gardiner beginning his where 
Froude's ended. These great historians realised that no 
adequate history of that remarkable period could be written 
that did hot include a full consideration of Shakespeare and 
his influence; yet, making no pretensions themselves to 
Shakespearean scholarship, and finding in extant knowledge 
no sure foundations whereon to build, they evaded the issue, 
confining their investigations to the development of those 
phases of history in which they were more vitally interested. 
Froude's intimate knowledge of the characters and atmo- 
sphere of Elizabethan social and political life, acquired by years 
of devoted application to an exhaustive examination of docu- 
mentai T records and the epistolatory correspondence of the 
period, convinced him that Shakespeare drew his models 
and his atmosphere from concurrent life. He writes : "We 
wonder at the grandeur, the moral majesty of some of 
Shakespeare's characters, so far beyond what the noblest 
among ourselves can imitate, and at first thought we attribute 
it to the genius of the poet who has outstripped nature in 
his creations, but we are misunderstanding the power and the 
meaning of poetry in attributing creatîveness toit in any such 
sense. Shakespeare created but only as the spirit of nature 
created around him, working in him as it worked abroad in 
those among whom he lived. The men whom he draws 


were such men as he saw and knew; the words thcy utter 
were such as he heard in the ordinary conversations in which 
he joined .... At a thousand unnamed English firesides he 
round the living originals for his Prince Hals, his Orlandos, 
his Antonios, his Portias, his Isabellas. The closer personal 
acquaintance which we can form with the English of the age 
of Elizabeth, the more we are satisfied that Shakespeare's 
great poetry is no more than the rhythmic echo of the lire 
which he depicts." 
As this book is intended as a precursor to one shortly to 
be published dealing with the sonnets and the plays of the 
Sonnet period, the only plays here critically considered are 
KingJokn and The Comedy of Errors, which I shall argue 
are the only plays--now extant--written by Shakespeare 
before the inception of his intimacy with the Earl of 
Southampton, which I date, upon good evidence, in the 
autumn of 59I. In the former we have probably the best 
example of the manner in which Elizabethan playwrights 
dramatised contemporary affairs. In this instance Shake- 
speare worked from an older play which had been composed 
with the same intention with which he rewrote it, and as the 
old play had passed the censor and been for years upon the 
public boards, he was enabled to develop his intention more 
openly than even he dared to do in later years, when, owing 
to the influence of Lord Burghley and his son, Sir Robert 
Cecil, the enforcement of the statures against the representa- 
tion of matters of State upon the stage became increasingly 
Though the political phases of Shakespeare's dramas 
become more veiled as the years pass, I unhesitatingly affirm 
that there is hOt a single play composed between the end of 
I59I and the conclusion of his dramatic career that does not, 


in some manner, intentionally reflect either the social, literary, 
or political affairs of his day. 
In order that the reader ma), approach a consideration of 
the rearranged sonnets with a clear perspective, and to 
keep the Sonnet story uninvolved by subsidiary argument, I 
now demonstrate hot only the beginning of the acquaintance 
between Shakespeare and the Earl of Southampton--which 
has hot hitherto been known--but also take a forward 
glance of several years in order definitely to establish the 
identity of John Florio as Shakespeare's original for FalstaoE 
Parolles, and Armado. His identity as the original for still 
other characters will be made apparent as this history 
develops in the Sonnet period. 



" " " " HAT porridge had John Keats ?" asks Browning. 
So may we well inquire of what blood was 
Shakespeare? What nice conjunction of racial 
strains produced this unerring judgrnent, this heaven-scaling 
imagination, this exquisite sensibility? for, however his 
rnanner of lire rnay have developed their expression, these 
qualities were plainly inherent in the man. 
The narne Shakespeare has been round to have existed 
during the thirteenth, fourteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth 
centuries in various parts of England, and has been rnost 
cornrnonly encountered in and about Warwickshire. While 
it is spelt in rnany different ways, the cornrnonest forrn is 
Shaxper or Ska:'peare, giving the a in the first syllable the 
same sound as in flax. Wherever Shakespeare familles are 
found, however, they invariably show a very great pre- 
ponderance of Christian names that are characteristically 
Norman: Richard, Gilbert, Hugh, Williarn, John, Robert, 
Anthony, Henry, Thomas, Joan, Mary, Isabella, Ann, 
Margaret, being met with frequently. It is likely then that 
the widespread and persistent use of Norrnan Christian 
names by Shakespeare familles denotes their Norman origin, 
and that this link with their past was preserved by family 
custom long after pride of ancestry--which first continued 


its use--was forgotten, as in the case of the Irish peasantry 
of Norman origin in Leinster--within what was formerly 
known as the Norman Pale--who have long forgotten their 
origin, but having Norman patronymics still preserve also 
Norman Christian names. 
The etymological origin of Shakespeare's naine is yet 
unsettled- one scholar suggests that it derives from the 
Anglo-Saxon, Saex3erkt. This would imply that the 
Anglo-Saxon prefix saex has by time been transmuted 
into Shake, and that the suffix, berht has become pear or 
pere. The instances in which the Anglo-Saxon sac have 
changed into the English s, are extremely rare. The 
modern sk in English when derived from Anglo-Saxon is 
almost invariably sc softened, or when derived from Danish 
or Norse sh, as, for instance, in the words sceadu shade, 
sceaft shaft, sceacan shake, sceal shall, sca»zu shame, sl«aa 
shape. I cannot find a single instance in the growth of 
Anglo-Saxon into English where the original berht has 
taken on thep sound and becomepearor pere. The English 
for ber[t as a rule is bert, burt, or bard. 
Shakespeare's sanity of judgment and spirituaI seif- 
rcliance are qualities which we naturally associate with the 
Norse temperament; his fine sensibility and unfettered 
imagination strike us as much more characteristically 
Gallic or Celtic. It seems probable then that in his physical 
and spiritual composition we have a rare admixture of these 
related Aryan types. Physically he was hOt a large man, 
being, in fact, rather below the middle stature; his hair was 
strong in texture and dark reddish in colour, while his eyes 
were brown; his nose was large, and his lips full, but the 
face relieved of sensuousness by the dominant majesty of 
the brow. This is hot descriptive of an Anglo-Saxon type" 


it is much more distinctly French or Norman. It is prob- 
able that the blood of the Norman tan full in Shakespeare's 
veins, and who was the Norman but the racial combination 
of the Norseman and the Gaul ? In this light, then, I suggest 
that the naine Shakespeare seems to be much closer to the 
Norman-French jracquespierre than it is to the Anglo-Saxon 
saexberht. In the gradual transition of Norman-French 
into English pronunciation, Shakespeare, or as the naine 
was pronounced in Elizabethan days, Shaxper, is exactly 
the form which the English tongue would have given to 
the naine jracquespierre. It is significant that Arden, his 
mother's naine, is also of Norman origin; that his grand- 
father's naine Richard, his father's naine John, his own 
naine William, and the names of all his brothers and 
sisters, but one, were Norman. In view of these indica- 
tions, it is not unreasonable to assume that Norman blood 
held good proportion in the veins of this greatest of all 
Exhaustive research by interested genealogists has 
failed to trace Shakespeare's forebears further into the past 
than to his grandfather, Richard Shakespeare, a substantial 
yeoman of Snitterfield, and this relationship, while generally 
accepted, is not yet definitely established. There is no 
doubt, however, that John Shakespeare, butcher, glover, 
woolstapler, or corndealer, or all of these things combined, 
of Stratford-upon-Avon, was his father, and that the poet 
was baptized in the Parish Church of that town upon 26th 
April, in the year 1564. He was born on, or shortly before, 
23rd April in the saine year. 
Shakespeare's mother was Mary Arden, the youngest of 
eight daughters--by the first wife--of Robert Arden, a 
landed gentleman of Wilmcote, related to the Ardens of 


Parkhill, at that time one of the leading families of 
On the theory that men of great intellectual capacity 
inherit their qualities from the distaff side, it might help us 
to realise Shakespeare better if we know more about his 
mother: of her personality and character, however, we know 
absolutely nothing. 
The mothers depicted by Shakespeare in his plays are, 
as a rule, devoted, strong, and noble characters, and are 
probably in some measure spiritual reflections of the model 
he knew most intimately. It is improbable that Shake- 
speare's childhood should not have shown some evidence of 
the qualities he later displayed, and impossible that such 
promise should be hidden from a mother's eye. 
The wealth of Shakespeare's productiveness in the three 
years preceding the end of 594 gives ample evidence 
that the dark years intervening between his departure from 
Stratford and the autumn of I59t had not been idly spent. 
Such mastery of his art as he displays even at this early 
period was hOt attained without an active and interested 
novitiate in his profession. It is evident that the appellation 
Johannesfactotu», which Greene in I592 slurringly bestows 
upon him, had been well earned in the six or seven pre- 
ceding years of his London life for which we possess no 
Whatever misgivings their staid and thrifty Stratford 
neighbours may have had as to the wisdom of the youthful 
Shakespeare's London adventure, we may well believe that 
Mary Arden, knowing her son's fibre, felt fair assurance 
that his success there would corne near to matching her 
desires, and that of the several spurs to his industry and 
pride of achievement the smile of her approval was hot the 


least. There is possibly a backward glance to his mother's 
faith in him in the spirit of Volumnia's hopes or the fame 
of her son: 

"When yet he was but tender-bodied, and the only 
son of my womb; when youth with comeliness plucked 
ail gaze his way; when for a da¥ of Kings' entreaties, a 
mother should not sell him an hour from her beholding; I 
--considering how honour would become such a person; 
that it was no better than picture-like to bang by the wall, 
if renown ruade it not stir,--was pleased to let him seek 
danger where he was like to find fame. To a cruel war I 
sent him; from whence he returned, his brows bound with 
oak. I tell thee, daughter--I sprang not more in joy at 
first hearing he was a man-child, than now in first seeing he 
had proved himself a man." 

Mary Arden died in I6O8, at about the time the passage 
quoted above was written, having lived long enough to see 
the fortunes of the famil¥ restored through her son's efforts, 
and also to see him become one of the most noted men in 
England, and returning to Stratford with his brows crowned, 
if not with martial oak, with more enduring laurels. 
We have no record of Shakespeare's schooldays. We 
know that a free grammar school of good standard existed 
in Stratford during his boyhood, and later. Itis usually 
assumed that it was here that Shakespeare got the elements 
of his education. Though he was in no sense a classical 
scholar, he undoubtedly had an elementary knowledge of 
Latin, and may possibly, in later years, have acquired a 
smattering of Greek. George Chapman accuses Shakespeare 
of spreading the report that his alleged translations of Homer 
from the original Greek were, in fact, made from Latin 
versions. Whatever truth there may have been in Chapman's 


accusation against Shakespeare in this connection, modern 
scholarship bas found that there were good grounds for such 
a report, and that Chapman undoubtedly ruade free use of 
the Latin of Scapula in all of his translations. Chapman's 
allegation, if true, seems to imply that Shakespeare's know- 
ledge of Latin was not so meagre but that he could, upon 
occasion, successfully combat his learned opponents with 
weapons of their own choice. 
Once at work in London, Shakespeare wrought hard, and 
in view of lais immense productiveness can have had little 
leisure in the ten or fiffeen years following. We may infer, 
then, that the wealth of knowledge of nature he displays 
was acquired in his boyhood and youth in the country round 
about Stratford. His intimate acquaintance with animate 
and inanimate life in all their forms, lais knowledge of banks 
where wild thyme grew, his love of flowers and of natural 
beauty which remained with him all through his life, were 
evidently gained at that receptive period: 

'« When meadow, grove, and stream, 
The earth and every common thing to (him) did seem, 
Appareled in celestial ]ight, 
The glory and the freshness of a dream." 

Though Shakespeare's schooldays were over long before 
he leff Stratford for London, his real education had only 
then begun. To his all-gleaning eye and hungry mind 
every day he lived brought new accretions of knowledge. 
Notwithstanding the paucity of recorded fact which exists 
regarding his material lire, and the wealth of intimate know- 
ledge we may possess regarding the lives of other writers, I 
doubt if, in the works of any other author in the entire 
history of literature, we can trace such evidence of continuous 
intellectual and spiritual growth. 


While we have no light on Shakespeare's childhood, a 
few facts have been gleaned from the Stratford records 
concerning his father's affairs and his own youth, a considera- 
tion of which may enable us to judge the underlying causes 
which led him to seek his fortunes in London. 
There is something pathetic yet dignified about the 
figure of John Shakespeare as we dimly sight it in what 
remains of the annals of his town and time. The stage he 
treads is circumscribed, and his appearances are few, but 
sufficient for us to apprehend a high-spirited but injudicious 
man, showing always somewhat superior in spirit to his 
social conditions. 
He settled in Stratford twelve years previous to the birth 
of our poet, and appears to have been recognised as a man 
of some importance soon after his arrival. We have record 
that he was elected to various small municipal offices early 
iii his Stratford career, and also of purchases of property 
from time to time, all of which evidences a growth in estate 
and public regard. At about the time of Shakespeare's 
birth, and during a season of pestilence, we find him prominent 
amongst those of his townsmen who contributed to succour 
their distressed and stricken neighbours. A year later than 
this we find him holding office as alderman, and later still as 
bailiff of Stratford ; the latter the highest office in the gift of 
his fellow-townsmen. While holding this office we catch a 
glimpse of him giving welcome to a travelling company of 
players; an innovation in the uses of his position which 
argues a broad and tolerant catholicity of mind when con- 
trasted with the growing Puritanism of the times. And so, 
for several years, we see him prosper, and living as befits one 
who prospers, and, withal, vearing his village honours with a 
kindly dignity. But fortune turns, and a period of reverses 


sets in; we do not trace them very distinctly; we find him 
borrowing moneys and mortgaging property, and, later, these 
and older obligations fall due, and, failing payment, he is 
sued, and thereafter for some years he fights a stubborn 
rearguard fight with pursuing rate in the form of truculent 
creditors and estranged relatives. 
In the onset of these troubles an event occurred which, 
we may safely assume, did hot tend to ease his worries nor 
add to his peace of mind. In 582, his son, our poet, then 
a youth of eighteen, brought to his home an added care in 
the shape of a wife who was nearly eight years his senior, 
and who (the records tell us) bore him a daughter within six 
months of the date of their betrothal. AI1 the circumstances 
surrounding the marriage lead us to infer that Shakespeare's 
family was not enthusiastically in favour of it, and was 
perhaps ignorant of it till its consummation, and that it was 
practically forced upon the youthful Shakespeare by the 
bride's friends for reasons obvious in the facts of the case. 
About two and a half years from this date, and at a period 
when John Shakespeare's affairs had become badly involved 
and his creditors uncomfortably persistent, his son's family 
and his own care were increased by the addition of the 
twins, Judith and Hamnet. The few records we have of 
this period ([585-86) show a most unhappy state of affairs ; 
his creditors are still on the warpath, and one, owning to the 
solid name of John Brown, having secured judgment against 
him, is compelled to report to the court that "the defendant 
hath no property whereon to levy." Shortly after this, John 
Shakespeare is shorn of the last shred of his civic honours, 
being deprived of his office of alderman for non-attendance 
at the councîl meetings. In this condition of things we may 
realise the feelings of an imaginative and sensitive youth of 


his son's calibre; how keenly he would feel the helplessness 
and the reproach of his position, especially ifas was no 
doubt the caseit was augmented by the looks of askance 
and wagging of heads of the sleek and thrifty wise-ones of 
his community. 
We are fairly well assured that Shakespeare did not 
leave Stratford before the end of I585, and it appears prob- 
able that he remained there as late as I586 or I587. Seeing 
that he had compromised himself at the age of eighteen with 
a woman eight years his senior, whom he married from a 
sense of honour or was induced to marry by her friends, we 
may infer that the three or four subsequent years he spent 
in Stratford were not conducive either to domestic felicity 
or peace of mind. How Shakespeare occupied himself 
during these years we may never know, though itis very 
probable that he worked in the capacity of assistant to his 
father. That these were years of introspection and remorse 
to one of his spirit, however, there can be little doubt ; there 
can be still less doubt that they were also years of formative 
growth, and that in this interval the irresponsible youth, who 
had given hostages to fortune by marrying at the age of 
eighteen, steadied by the responsibility of a growing family, 
quickly developed into some promise of the man tobe. 
No biographer has yet taken into consideration the 
effect which the circumstances of Shakespeare's life during 
these four or rive formative years must necessarily have had 
in the development of his character. That this exquisite 
poet, this builder of dreams, should in the common affairs 
of life have displayed such an effectively practical bent, has 
always appeared an anomaly; a partial explanation is tobe 
found in the incentive given to his energies by the conditions 
of his life, and of his father's affairs, at this formative period. 

To the habitually poor, poverty is a familiar ; to the patrcian 
who has had reverses, it may be a foil to his spirit: he still 
has his pride of family and caste. To the burgher class, in 
which Shakespeare moved in Stratford, the loss of money 
was the loss of caste. To provide for the future of his 
children and to restore the declining fortunes and prestige 
of his family became now his most immediate concern, if 
we may form any judgment from his subsequent activities. 
The history of literature has given us so many instances of 
poetic genius being unaccompanied by ordinary worldly 
wisdom, and so few instances of a combination of business 
aptitude with poetic genius, that some so-called biographers, 
enamoured of the conventional idea of a poet, seem almost to 
resent our great poet's practical common sense when dis- 
played in his everyday lire, and to impute to him as a 
derogation, or fault, the sound judgment in worldly matters, 
without which he never could have evolved the sane and 
unimpassioned philosophy of lire, which, like a firm and 
even warp, runs veiled through the multîcoloured weft of 
incident and accident in his dramas. 
All Shakespearean biographers now agree in dating his 
hegira from Stratford hot later than the year 1587. Early 
in I585 his twîn children, .udith and Hamnet, were born. 
The fact that no children were born to him later is usually 
advanced in favour of the assumption that he left Stratford 
shortly after this date. In the next eleven years we have 
but one mention of him in the Stratford records. Towards 
the end of 87 his naine, in conjunction with his father's, 
appears upon a legal form relating to the proposed cancella- 
tion of a mortgage upon some property in which he held 
a coutingent intercst. This, however, does not necessarily 
indicate his presence in Stratford at that time. 


At the present time the most generally accepted 
hypothesis regarding the beginning of Shakespeare's 
theatrical career is that he joined the Earl of Leicester's 
company of players upon the occasion of their visit to Strat- 
ford-upon-Avon, either in the year 1586 or I587. Upon 
the death of the Earl of Leicester in I588 , when this 
company was disrupted, it is thought probable that in 
company with Will Kempe, George Bryan, and Thomas 
Pope (actors with whom he was afferwards affiliated for 
years), he joined Lord Strange's players, with which company 
under its various later titles he continued to be connected 
during the remainder of his theatrical career. 1 shall prove 
this theory to be erroneous and adduce evidence to show 
that of whatever company, or companies, he may later have 
been an active member, his theatrical experience had its 
inception in a connection as theatrical assistant with the 
interests of the Burbages; with whose fortunes he there- 
after continued to be connected till the end of his London 
In judging of the youthful Shakespeare, of whom we can 
only conjecture, we may reasonably draw inferences ff'oin 
the character of the man we find revealed in his life's vork. 
I ara convinced that Shakespeare's departure from Stratford 
was deliberate, and that when he went to London he did so 
with a definite purpose in view. Had Shakespeare's father 
been a prosperous man of business, in all probability the 
world would never have heard of his son ; though the local 
traditions of Stratford might have been enriched by the 
proverbial wit and wisdom of a certain anonymous sixteenth- 
century tradesman. 
Unconfirmed legend, originating nearly a hundred years 
after the alleged event, is the sole basis for the report that 


-Shakespeare was forced to leave his native town on account 
of his participation in a poaching adventure. Itis possible 
that Shakespeare in his youth may have indulged in such a 
natural transgression of the Iaw, but supposing it tobe a 
fact that he did so, it does hot necessarily brand him as a 
scapegrace. A ne'er-do-well in the country would probably 
remain the same in the city, and would be likely to 
accentuate his characteristics there, especially if his life was 
cast, as was Shakespeare's, in Bohemian surroundings. 
lnstead of this, what are the facts ? Assuming that Shake- 
speare left Stratford in 1586 or  587, and became, as tradition 
reports, a servitor in the theatre at that period, let us look 
ten years ahead and see how he has fared. 
We know that he had already returned to Stratford in 
t 597 and purchased one of the most important residences in 
the town. From the fact that John Shakespeare's creditors 
from this time forward ceased to harass him, we may assume 
that he had also settled his father's affairs. We have record 
that in  596 he had, through his father, applied for the con- 
firmation of an old grant of arms, which was confirmed 
three years later, and that he thereafter was styled " William 
Shakespeare, Gentleman of Stratford-upon-Avon." At this 
period he had also produced more than one-third of his 
known literary work, and was acknowledged as the leading 
dramatist ofthe rime. Ail of this he had attained working 
in the same environment in which other men of about his 
own age, but of greater education and larger opportunities, 
had round penury, disgrace, and death. Marlowe, his con- 
frère, at the age of thirty, in I593, was killed in a tavern 
brawl. A year earlier, Greene, also a university man, would 
bave died a beggar on the street but for the charity of a 
cobbler's wife who housed him in his dying hours. Spenser, 


breathing apurer atmosphere, but lacking the business 
aptitude of Shakespeare, died broken-hearted in pover W in 
1599. George Peele, another university man, at about the 
same date, and at the age of thirty-four, we are told by 
Meres, died from the results of an irregular life. And those 
of his literary contemporaries who lived as long as, or out- 
lived, Shakespeare, what were their ends, and where are 
their memories? Unknown and in most cases forgotten 
except where they lire in his reflected light. Matthew 
Roydon lived long and died in poverty, no one knows when 
or where. George Chapman outlived his great rival many 
years, and died as he had lived, a friendless misanthropist. 
Though Shakespeare won to fame and fortune over the 
temptations and vicissitudes ofthe saine life and environments 
to which so many of his fellows succumbed, we have proof 
that this was not due to any inherent asceticism or native 
coldness of blood. 
No man in Shakespeare's circumstances could have 
attained and accomplished what he did during those early 
years living at haphazard or without a controlling purpose in 
life. Whatever may have been the immediate accident of 
fate that turned his face Londonwards, we may rest assured 
that he went there with the purpose of retrieving his good 
naine in his own community and rehabilitating the fortunes 
of his family. 
Shakespeare's literary history does not show in him any 
evidence of remarkable precocity. Keats was famous and 
already gathered to the immortals at an age at which Shake- 
speare was still in the chrysalid stage of the actual buskin 
and sock. It may reasonably be doubted that Shakespeare 
produced any of his known poems or plays previous to 
the years 159o-91. Though his genius blossomed late his 


common sense and business capacity devcloped early, forced 
into being, no doubt, by a realisation of his responsibilities, 
as well as by the deplorable condition into which his father's 
afiairs had fallen. So, between the years 1583, when he was 
married, and 1591-92, when we first begin to get some hints 
of his literary activities, his Pegasus was in harness earning 
bread and butter and, incidentally, gleaning worldly wisdom. 
" Love's young dream" is over; the ecstatic quest of the 
"not impossible she," almost at its inception, has ended in 
the cold anticlimax of an enforced marriage. 
We may dismiss the deer-stealing rumour as referring to 
this period. The patient industry, sound judgment, and 
unusual business capacity exhibited by Shakespeare from 
the time we begin to get actual glimpses of his doings until 
the end of his career, belle the stupid and belated rumour of 
his having been forced to leave Stratford as a fugitive from 
justice on account of his participation in a poaching 
adventure upon Sir Thomas Lucy's preserves. While it is 
apparent that this bucolic Justice of the Peace is caricatured 
as Justice Shallow in Henry IV., Part IL, it is still more clear 
that this play was not written until the end of the year 1598. 
When Shakespeare's methods of work are better understood 
it will become evident that he did not in I598 revenge an 
injury from ten to twelve years old. Whatever may have 
been his animus against Sir Thomas Lucy it undoubtedly 
pertained to conditions existent in the year I598. In I596 
John Shakespeare's application for arms was made, but was 
not finally granted until late in I598, or early in 599. It 
was still under consideration by the College of Heralds, 
or had very recently been granted when Shakespeare wrote 
Henry I U., Part II., late in 1598. It is not likely that such a 
grant of arms would be made even by the most friendly 


disposed authorities without consultation with, or rcference 
to, the local magistracy or gentry regarding the character 
and social standing of the applicant. Itis quite likely then 
that the rustic squire resented--what such a character would 
undoubtedly have regarded as a tradesman's presumption, 
and that Shakespeare, becoming cognizant of his objections, 
answered them in kind by caricaturing the Lucy arms. 
The critical student of Shakespeare's works will find that 
wherever a reflection of a topical nature is palpable in his 
plays, that the thing, or incident, referred tois almost 
invariably a marrer of comparatively recent experience. If 
it is a reflection of, or a reference to, another writer we may 
be assured that Shakespeare has recently corne from a 
pcrusal of the writer in question. If the allusion is of a 
social or political nature it will refer to some recent happen- 
ing or to something that is still of public interest. Should 
such an allusion be in any sense autobiographical and per- 
taining to his own personal interests or feelings, it is still 
more likely to refer to recent experience. Whatever may 
have been the reason for his caricature of Sir Thomas Lucy, 
its cause was evidently of a later date than his departure 
from Stratford. It was no shiffless runagate nor fugitive 
from justice who went to London in, or about, I585-87; 
neither was ita wrathful Chatterton, eating out his heart in 
bitter pride while firing his imagination to 

" Paw up against the light 
And do strange deeds upon the clouds," 

It was a very sane, clear-headed, and resourceful young man 
who took service with the Players, one, as yet, probably 
unconscious of literary ability or dramatic genius, but with a 
capacity for hard work; grown somewhat old for his years 


through responsibility, and with a slightly embittered and 
mildly cynical pose of mind in regard to lire. 
An early autobiographical note seems tobe sounded in 
Falconbridge's soliloquy in King" _]ohn, Act II. Scene ii., as 
follows : 
"And why rail I on this commodity ? 
But for because he hath hot woo'd me yet ; 
Not that I have the power to clutch my hand, 
When his fait angels would salute my palm; 
But for my hand, as unattempted yet, 
Like a poor beggar, raileth on the rich. 
Well, whiles I ara a beggar, I will rail 
And say there is no sin but to be rich ; 
And being rich, my virtue then shall be 
To say there is no vice but beggary. 
Since kings break faith upon comrnodity, 
Gain, be my lord, for I will worship thee." 
l have new evidence to show that this play was composed 
by Shakespeare in I59I, and though it was revised in 
about I596 ' the passage quoted above, which exhibits 
the affected cynicism of youth, pertains to the earlier 
perîod. Aside from the leading of the natural bent of his 
genius it is evident that the greater pecuniary reward to be 
attained from the writing rather than from the acting of 
plays would be quickly apparent to a youth who in this 
spirit has leff home to make London his oyster. 
As research and criticism advance and we are enabled, 
little by little, more intimately to apprehend the personality 
of Shakespeare and to construct a more definite chronology 
of his doings, the shifting lights of evidence in the form of 
tradition and legend, which in the past have dazed, or mis- 
led, searchers, either disappear or take on new values. 
When we remember that Shakespeare, when he went to 
London, was about twenty-three years old, the father of a 
family, and the son of an ex-bailiff of the hOt unimportant 


town of Stratford, we may dismiss as a fanciful distortion 
the story of his holding horses at the theatre doors for stray 
pcnnies ; and in the added embellishment of the story which 
describes this Orpheon, yet thrifty street Arab, as organising 
for this purpose a band of his mates who, to prove their 
honesty when soliciting the care of a horse, would claim to 
be "Shakespeare's boys," we may find a clue to the actual 
facts of the case. We bave hitherto had no definite record 
of, nor recognised allusion to, Shakespeare between the year 
I587, when his name is mentioned with his father's in a 
legal document, and the year I592, when we have the well- 
known allusions of Robert Greene. Greene's references in 
this latter year reveal Shakespeare as having already entered 
upon his literary career, and at the same time, in the phrases 
" upstart crow beautified with our feathers" and "the onlie 
Shake-scene in the country," seem to point to him as an 
actor ; the expression "jrohannesfactotum" seems still further 
to widen the scope of his activities and to indîcate the fact 
that Shakespeare wrought in several capacities for his 
masters during his earlier theatrical career. Part of his first 
work for his employers, ît is possible, consisted in taking 
charge of the stablîng arrangements for the horses of the 
gentlemen and noblemen who frequented the Theatre. The 
expression "rude ,roome, which Greene uses in his attack 
upon Shakespeare, is evidently used as pointing at his work 
in this capacity. The story of the youths who introduced 
themselves as "Shakespeare's boys" seems to indicate that 
he was the recognised representative of the theatrical pro- 
prietors who provided accommodations for this purpose. It 
is to be assumed then that Shakespeare, having charge of 
this work, would upon occasions corne personally in contact 
with the noblemen and gentry who frequented t3urbage's 


Theatre, which was situated in the parish of Shoreditch, then 
regarded as the outskirts of the City. 
Of the several records concerning this alleged incident 
in Shakespeare's early London experience, that which is 
simplest and latest in date seems to bear the greatest 
evidence of truth when considered in connection with 
established facts and coincident circumstantial evidence. 
Traditions preserved in the poet's own family would in 
essentials be likely to be closer to the truth than the bibulous 
gossip of Sir William Davenant, from which source all the 
other records of this stor¥ are derived. In the monthly 
magazine of February 8x8 the story is told as follows: 
" Mr. J. M. Smith said he had often heard his mother state 
that Shakespeare owed his rise in life and his introduction 
to the theatre to his accidentally holding the horse of a 
gentleman at the door of the theatre on his first arriving 
in London; his appearance led to inquiry and subsequent 
patronage." The "J. M. Smith " mentioned here was the 
son of Mary Hart, a lineal descendant of Joan Hart, 
Shakespeare's sister. While it is clearly impossible that 
Shakespeare owed his introduction to the theatre to South- 
ampton, there can be little doubt, in the light of data to 
follow, that his fise in life was much enhanced by his friend- 
ship and patronage. What truth there may be in this story 
is evidently a distorted reflection of Shakespeare's earlier 
work in the Theatre at Shoreditch and of his later acquaint- 
ance with the Earl of Southampton. We bave no record, 
hint, or suggestion of his personal acquaintance or business 
connection with any noblemen or gentlemen other than 
Southampton, and possibly Sir Thomas Heneage, at this 
early period. It shall later be shown that Southampton 
first became identified with London and Court life in 


October I59o. I am led by good evidence to the belief 
that Shakespeare's acquaintance with this nobleman had its 
inception very soon after this date, and that he, and the 
theatrical company to which he was attached at that rime, 
attended the Earl of Southampton at Cowdray House and 
at Tichfield House in August and September I59, upon 
the occasion of the Queen's progress to, and sojourn at, 
these places. 



S we have well-attested evidence that Shakespearc 
was connected with the interests of James Burbage 
and his sons from I594 until the end of his London 
career, it is usually, and reasonably, assumed that his early 
years in Lond'on were also spent with the Burbages ; but as 
nothing is definitely known regarding Burbage's company 
affiliations between I575, when we have record that he was 
still manager of Leicester's company, and I594, when the 
Lord Chamberlain's company leff Henslowe and Alleyn 
and returned to Burbage and the Theatre, knowledge of 
Shakespeare's company affiliations during these years is 
equally nebulous. Only by throwing light upon Burbage's 
activities during these years can we hope for light upon 
Shakespeare during the saine period. Much of the 
ambiguity regarding Burbage's affairs during these years 
arises from the fact that critics persist in regarding him 
as an actor and an active member of a regular theatrical 
company after I576 , instead of recognising the palpable 
fact that he was now also a theatrical manager with a large 
amount of borrowed money invested in a theatre upon 
which it would take all of his energies to pay interest and 
make a profit. Al'ter i576 Burbage's relations with com- 


panies of actors were necessari|y much the same as those of 
Henslowe's with the companies that acted at his theatres, 
though it is probable that Burbage acted at times for a few 
years after this date. He was now growing old, and his 
business responsibility increasing, it is unlikely that he con- 
tinued to act long after I584, when his son Richard entered 
upon his histrionic career. 1 
When Shakespeare came to London in I586-87, there 
were only two regular theatres,--the Theatre and the 
Curtain,--though there were usually several companies 
playing also at innyards within and about the City. Thc 
Theatre at Shoreditch, owned by James Burbage, was built 
by him in I576 , and was the first building designed in 
modern England specially for theatrical purposes. Though 
he had many troubles in later years with his brother-in-law 
and partner, John Brayne, and with his grasping landlord, 
Giles _Allen, he retained his ownership of the Theatre until 
his death in I597, and he, or his sons, maintained its 
management until the expiration of their lease in the saine 
In I57t an Act of Parliament was passed making it 
necessary for a company of players who wished to exercise 
their profession without unnecessary interference from petty 
officiais and municipal authorities, to secure a licence as the 
players, or servants, of a nobleman; lacking such licences 
members of their calling were classed before the law, and 
liable to be treated, as "vagabonds and sturdy beggars." 
Such a licence once issued to a company was regarded as 
a valuable corporate asset by its sharers. At rimes a 
company possessing a licence would diminish by attrition 
1 This interesting fact, hitherto unknown, has recently been pointed out by 
Mrs. C. C. Stope», 13trbage and Skakes2eare's Stage, London, 1913. 


until the ownership of the licence became vested in the 
hands of a few of the original sharers, who, lacking either 
the means or ability to continue to maintain themselves as 
an effective independent organisation, would form a con- 
nection with a similarly depleted company and perform as 
one company, each of them preserving their licensed identity. 
In travelling in the provinces such a dual company would 
at times be recorded under one title, and again under the 
other, in the accounts of the Wardens, Chamberlains, and 
Mayors of the towns they visited. Occasionally, however, 
the names of both companies would be recorded undcr one 
payment, and when their functions differed, they seem at 
times to have secured separate payments though evidently 
working together--one company supplyiog the musicians 
and the other the actors. 
If we find for a number of years in the provincial and 
Court records the names of two companies recorded 
separately, who from time to rime act together as one 
company, and that these companies act together as one 
company at the saine London theatre, we may infer that 
the dual company may be represented also at rimes where 
only the naine of olle of them is given in provincial or 
Court records. It is likely that the full lmmbers of such 
a dual company would not make prolonged provincial tours 
except under stress of circumstances, such as the enforced 
closing of the theatres in London on account of the plague ; 
and that while the entire combination might perform at 
Coventry and other points within a short distance of 
London, they would probably divide their forces and act 
as separate companies upoll the occasions of their regular 
provincial travels. 
Such a combination as this between two companies in 


some instances lasted for years. The provincial, and even 
the Court records, will make mention of one company, and 
at rimes of the other, in instances where two companies had 
merged their activities while preserving their respective 
titles. 1 A lack of knowledge of this fact is responsible for 
most of the misapprehension that exists at present regarding 
Shakespeare's early theatrical affiliations. 

1 A critical examination of the records of the English Dramatic Companies, 
1558-1642 , collected by Mr. John Tucker Murray, convinces me that such 
affiliations as those mentioned above existed between Lord Hunsdon's company 
and the Earl of Leicester's company from I582-83 until 1585, and between the 
remnant of Leicester's company,--which remained in England when their fellows 
went to the Continent in I S$5,--the Lord Admiral's company, and the Lord 
Chamberlain's company from 1585 until 1589, and following a reorganisation in 
that year--when the Lord Chamberlain's and Leicester's companies merged with 
Lord Strange's company--between this new Lord Strange's company and the 
Lord Admiral's company until 1591, whcn a further reorganisation took place, the 
majority of Strange's and the Admiral's men going to I Ienslowe and the Rose, 
and a portion, including Shakespeare, remaining with Burbage and reorganising 
in this year with accretions from the now disrupting Queen's company, including 
Gabriel Spencer and IIumphrey Jeffes, as the Earl of Pembroke's company; 
John Sinkler, and possibly others from the Queen's company, evidently joined 
the Strange-Admiral's men at the saine tinle. The mention of the names of 
these three men--two of them Pembroke's men and one a Strange's man af'ter 
I592--in the stage directions of The Truc Tragedy of lhe Duke of t'ork, can be 
aecounted for only by the probable faet that all three were members of the 
O ' 
eompany that originally owned the play, and that this was the ._ueen s eompany 
is generally eonceded by critics. 
In order to restore their own aeting strength the depleted Queen's company 
appears now to bave formed similar affiliations with the Earl of Sussex's company, 
eontinuing the eonnection until 1594. In this year Strange's men (now the Lord 
Chamberlain's men) returned to Burbage while the Admiral's portion of the 
eombination stayed with Henslowe as the Lord Admiral's eompany. These two 
eompanies now restored their full numbers by taking on men from the Earl of Pem- 
broke's and the Earl of Sussex's eompanies ; both of whieh now eease to work as 
independent eompanies, though the portion of Pembroke's men that retumed to 
IIenslowe, including Spencer and Jeffes, appear to bave retained their own 
lieensed identity until 1597, vhen several of them definitely joined Henslowe as 
Admiral men. Some Pembroke's and Sussex's men, hOt taken by Burbage or 
Henslowe in 1594, evidentlyjoined the Queen's eompany at that time. I Iens- 
lowe finaneed his brother Francis Henslowe in the purehase of a share in the 
Queen's company at about this rime. 


Under whatever varying licences and titles the organisa- 
tien of players to which Shakespeare attached himself upon 
his arrival in London may have performed in later years, ail 
tradition, inference, and evidence point to a connection from 
the beginning with the interests of James Burbage and his 
Though other companies played at intervals at Burbage's 
Theatre at, and shortly following, 1586-87, the period usually 
accepted as marking the beginning of Shakespeare's con- 
nection with theatrical affairs, it shall be made evident that 
the Lord Chamberlain's--recently Lord Hunsdon's--com- 
pany, of which James Burbage was at that date undoubtedly 
the manager, ruade their centre at his house when perform- 
ing in London. That this was a London company with an 
established theatrical home in the most important theatre 
in London, between the years I582 and I589, is established 
by the facts that .lames ]3urbage was its manager, and the 
infrequency of mention of it in the provincial records. It is 
probable that at this early period it was not a full company 
of actors, but that Lord Hunsdon's licence covered ]3urbage 
and his theatrical employees and musicians. 
Numerous and continuous records of provincial visits for 
a company infer that it would be better known as a provincial 
than as a London company, while the total lack of any 
record of Court performances, taken in conjunction with a 
large number of records of provincial performances, would 
imply that such a company had no permanent London 
abiding-place, such as Lord Hunsdon's company undoubtedly 
had in ]3urbage's Theatre. 
The fact that James Burbage, the leader of Leicester's 
company in its palmy daysq1574 to 1582mwas» between  582 
and I589, the leader of Lord Hunsdon's company, when 


coupled with the fact that they appeared before the Cour 
during this interval, gives added evidence that it was a 
recognised London company at this period. 
Much ambiguity regarding James ]3urbage's theatrical 
aftîliations in the years between I583 and I594 has been 
engendered by the utterly gratuitous assumption that he 
joined the Queen's players upon the organisation of that 
company by Edmund Tilney, the Master of the Revels, in 
I583, leaving the Earl of Leicester's players along with 
Robert Wilson, John Laneham, and Richard Tarleton at 
that rime. We have conclusive evidence, however, against 
this assumption. James ]3urbage worked under the patron- 
age of Lord Hunsdon and was undoubtedly the owner of 
the Theatre in  584, although Halliwell-Phillipps, and others 
who have followed him in his error have assumed, on account 
of his having mortgaged the lease of the Theatre in the year 
1579, to one John Hyde, a grocer of London, that the actual 
occupancy and use of the Theatre had also then been 
transferred. There is nothing unusual or mysterious in the 
fact that Burbage mortgaged the Theatre to Hyde. In the 
time of Elizabeth, leases of business property were bought, 
sold, and hypothecated for loans and regarded as investment 
securities. Burbage at this rime was in need of money. 
His brother-in-law, John Brayne, who had engaged with 
him to advance half of the necessary expenses for the 
building and conduct of the Theatre, defaulted in 578 in 
his payments. It is evident that Burbage borrowed the 
money he needed from Hyde, mortgaging the lease as 
security, probably agreeing to repay the loan with interest 
in instalments. It is hot unlikely that it was Giles Allen's 
l«owledge of this transaction that excited his cupidity and 
led him to demand £24 instcad of ri4 a year when Burbage 


sought an agreed upon extension of the lease in I585. As 
Hyde transferred the lease to Cuthbert Burbage in I589, it 
appears that he held a ten years' mortgage, which was a 
common terre in such transactions. In I584 Burbage was 
clearly still manager of the Theatre, and in the eyes of the 
companies playing there from rime to rime, who were hot 
likely to be cognizant of his private business transactions, 
such as borrowing of money upon a mortgage, was also still 
tire owner of the Theatre. 
In one of the witty Recorder FIeetwood's reports to Lord 
Burghley, dated I8th June 1584,1 we have the folloxving 
matter referring to the Theatre and the Curtain: " Upon 
Sondaie, my Lord sent two aldermen to the court, for the 
suppressing and pulling downe of the theatre and curten, 
for ail the Lords agreed thereunto, saving my Lord 
Chamberlayn and Mr. Vice-Chamberlayn ; but we obtayned 
a letter to suppresse them ail. Upon the saine night I sent 
for the Queen's players, and my Lord of Arundell his 
players, for they all well nighe obeyed the Lords letters. 
The chiefest of her Highnes' players advised me to send for 
the owner of the theatre, who was a stubborne fellow, and to 
bynd him. I dyd so. He sent me word that he was my 
Lord of Hunsdon's man, and that he would hot corne to me, 
but he would in the morning ride to my Lord. Then I 
sent the under-sheriff for hym, and he brought him to me, 
and at his coming he showted me out very justice. And in 
the end, I showed hym my Lord his master's hand, and 
then he was more quiet. But to die for it he wold not be 
bound. And then I mynding to send hym to prison, he 
ruade sute that he might be bounde to appeare at the oier 
and determiner, the which is to-morrowe, where he said that 
I Qucen Elizabelk aud lier Times, by Thomas Wright, 1838. 


he was sure the court wold not bynd hym, being a 
counsellor's man. And so I have graunted his request, 
where he is sure to be bounde, or else is lyke to do worse." 
The "stubborne fellow" was, without doubt, none other 
than the high-spirited and pugnacious James Burbage, who 
fought for twenty-one years over leases with his avaricious 
landlord, Giles Allen, and of whom Allen's lawyer writes in 
a Star Chamber document in I6oI" " Burbage tendered a 
new lease which he, the said Allen, refused to sign because 
it was different from the first and also because Burbage had 
assigned the Theatre to John Hyde and has also been a 
very bad and troublesome tenant to your orator." This 
document also makes mention of the fact as one of the 
reasons for Allen refusing to sign the new lease that " Hyde 
conveyed the lease to Cuthbert, son of James." The con- 
veyance here mentioned was made in I589. It is plain that 
Allen's lawyer implies that the mortgaging of the Theatre 
to Hyde and its later conveyance to Cuthbert Burbage were 
made hot alone for value received, but also for the pro- 
tection of James Burbage against legal proceedings. Here, 
then, we have good evidence that James Burbage, who, in 
the year I575, had been the manager, and undoubtedly a 
large owner, of the Earl of Leicester's company,--at that 
time the most important company of players in England,-- 
was in I584 a member of Lord Hunsdon's company, and if 
a member--in view of his past and present prominence in 
theatrical affairs--also, evidently, its manager and owner. 
As no logical reasons are given by Halliwell-Phillipps, or by 
the compilers who base their biographies upon his Outlies 
of tke £ife of Shakespeare, for declining to accept the 
reference in Fleetwood's letter to the "owner of the Theatre" 
s an allusion to Burbage, whom they admit to have been, 


and who undoubtedly was, the owner of the Theatre from 
576 until he transferred hîs property to his sons, Cuthbert 
and Richard, shortly before he died in  597,1 their refusal to 
see the light must arise from their obsession that Burbage 
at this time was a member of either Leicester's or the 
Queen's company, and as to which one they do hot seem 
to have a very clear impression. Shakespearean biography 
may be searched in vain for any other recorded facts con- 
cerning Burbage's company affiliations between I575 and 
594- In view of this general lack of knowledge of Burbage 
in these years the critical neglect of such a definite allusion 
as Recorder Fleetwood makes to the "owner of the Theatre" 
as a servant of Lord Hunsdon is difficult to understand. 
The alleged reason for the proposed suppression of the 
Theatre and the Curtain at this, and at other times, was that 
they had become public nuisances by attracting large crowds 
of the most unruly elements of the populace, which led to 
disturbances of the peace. 
In this saine report of Fleetwood's to Burghley, he 
informs him that on the previous Monday, upon his return 
to London from Kingston, he "found all the wardes full 
of watches. The cause thereof was for that neare the theatre 

 Sir Sidney Lee, who as a rule follows Halliwell-Phillipps implicitly, in 
,4 Life of William Shakes2eare , p. 59, writes: "James Burbage, in spire of 
pecuniary embarrassments, remained manager and owner of the Theatre for 
twenty-one years"; but in a footnote on p. 52, writes: "During 1584 an 
unnamed person, vaguely described as ' the owner of the Theatre,' claimed that 
he was under Lord Hunsdon's protection ; the reference is probably to one John 
Hyde, to whom the Theatre was mortgaged." There is surely nothing vague in 
the expression "owner of the Theatre," especially when we remember that it 
was used by an important legal functionary in one of his weekly reports to 
Lord Treasurer lqurghley. Recorder Fleetwood was a very exact and legal- 
minded official, and in using the term "the owner" he undoubtedly meant the 
owner and, it may be implied from the context, also the manager. ]3urbage 
was clearly manager and owner of the Theatre at this period. 


or curten, at the rime of the plays, there laye a prentice 
sleeping upon the grasse; and one Challes alias Grostock 
did turne upon the toe upon the belly of the prentice ; where- 
upon this apprentice start up, and afterwards they fell to 
playne blowes. The companie increased of both sides to 
the number of 500 at the least. This Challes exclaimed 
and said, that he was a gentleman, and that the apprentice 
was but a rascal and some there were littel better than 
roogs, that took upon them the naine of gentleman, and 
said the prentices were but the skume of the worlde. Upon 
these troubles, the prentices began the next daye, being 
Tuesdaye, to make mutinies, and assemblies, and conspyre 
to have broken the prisones, and to have taken forth the 
prentices that were imprisoned. But my Lord and I having 
intelligence thereof, apprehended four or fyve of the chier 
conspirators, who are in Newgate, and stand indicted or 
their lewd demeanours. 
"Upon Weddensdaye, one Browne a serving man in a 
blew coate, a shifting fellowe, having a perilous wit of his 
owne, intending a spoil if he could have brought it to passe, 
did at the theatre-doore quarrell vith certayn poore boyes, 
handicraft prentices, and strooke some of them ; and lastlie, 
he, with his sword, wounded and maymed one of the boyes 
.upon the leff hand. Whereupon there assembled near a 
thousand people. This Browne did very cunningly conveye 
himself away, but by chance he vas taken after and brought 
to Mr. Humprey Smithe, and because no man was able 
to charge him, he dismyssed him." 1 
1 This Browne was in all probability the notorious Ned Browne of whom 
Robert Greene wrote in I592, The t31acke tBookes 21[essenger, "Laying open 
the life and death of Ned Browne one of the worst cutpurses, crosbiters, and 
conycatchers that ever lived in England. IIerein he tells vcrie pleasantly in 
his owne person such strang¢ pranks and monstrous villanies by him and his 


Though the Council ordered the suppression of both 
the Theatre and the Curtain at this rime, Fleetwood's report 
of the disturbances seems to place the blame largely upon 
the Theatre. If the Queen's players were then performing 
at the Theatre, under the management of Burbage, it is 
most unlikely that the "chiefest of her Highnes' players "-- 
who informed Fleetwood that the owner of the Theatre 
was a "stubborne fellow," and advised that he be sent for 
and "bounde "--would have given advice and information so 
unfriendly to their own manager, and there cannot be the 
slightest doubt that Burbage was "the owner" of the 
Theatre from 576 to 596. It is apparent that the leader 
of the Queen's company was willing that the onus of the 
disturbances should be placed upon the Theatre rather than 
upon the Curtain, where the Queen's players were evidently 
performing at this time--Lord .Arundel's company tem- 
porarily occupying the Theatre, Lord Hunsdon's company 
being at that rime upon a provincial tour. The¥ are 
recorded as performing in Bath in June a584. x 
_& consideration of the records of Lord Hunsdon's 
company, and of previous companies that performed under 
this naine, gives fair evidence that James Burbage established 
this company in a582, at or before which date he severed 
his active connection as a player with the Earl of Leicester's 
players, though still continuing his own theatrical organisation 
at the Theatre under the patronage of Leicester, as the 
consorts performed as the like was yet never heard of in any of the former 
bookes of conycatching, etc. By R. G. Printed at London by John Danter 
for Thomas Nelson, dwelling in Silver Street, neere to the sign of the Red 
Crosse, I592, Quarto." Fleetwood writes later of Browne: "This Browne is 
a common cousener, a thief and a horse stealer and colloureth all his doings 
here about this town with a sure that he hath in the lawe against a brother 
of his in Staffordshire. He resteth now in Newgate." 
a English Dramatic Companies, by John Tucker Murray, vol. i. p. 


Earl of Leicester's musicians, and maintaining relations 
with Leicester's players as a theatre owner. 
Burbage's reason in 1582 for transferring from the 
patronage of Leicester for his theatrical employees to that 
of Lord Hunsdon was, no doubt, the fact of Leicester's 
departure for the Continent in tis year. The constant 
attacks being made by the puritanical authorities upon 
the London theatrical interests ruade it expedient for him 
to have the protection of a nobleman whose aid could be 
quickly invoked in case of trouble. As I will show later 
that Burbage was regarded with disfavour by Burghley in 
1589, it is likely that the opposition he met with from the 
local authorities in these earlier years was instigated by 
Burghley's agents and gossips. Recorder Fleetwood, chier 
amongst these, reports Burbage's alleged transgressions 
with such evident unction it is apparent that he knew his 
message would have a sympathetic reception. 
It shall be shown that in later years the Burbage 
theatrical organisation was anti-Cecil and pro-Essex in its 
tacit political representations; it is hot unlikely that it 
was recognised as anti-Cecil and pro-Leicester in these 
early years, and that in this manner it incurred Burghley's 
Previous to the year 1567 there existed a company 
under the patronage of Lord Hunsdon; between that date 
and 1582 there is no record of any company acting under 
this nobleman's licence. In July 1582 there is record 
that Lord Hunsdon's company acted at Ludlow, and upon 
27th December 1582 we have record that Lord Hunsdon's 
players acted before the Court, presenting A Comedy of 
Beauty and Iousewifey. The provincial records show 
a few performances by this company in the provinces in 


every year, except one, between 1582 and 1589; while 
1587 shows no provincial performance, a payment of rive 
shillings is recorded in Coventry " to the Lord Chamberlain's 
Musicians that came with the Judge at the assizes"; these 
were, no doubt, a portion of Burbage's company, Lord 
Hunsdon then being Lord Chamberlain. This entry, how- 
ever, is immediately preceded by the entry of a payment 
of twenty shillings to the Lord Admiral's players. It shall 
be shown that the Admiral's company was affiliated with 
Burbage at this time. 
The Lord Hunsdon who patronised this company from 
the rime of its inception, in I582, until we hear no more 
about it in 1589, was the saine tIenry Carey, Baron t[unsdon, 
who, in I594, still holding the office of Lord Chamberlain, 
again took Burbage and his theatrical associates under his 
In imagining James Burbage as a member of the Queen's 
company of players for several years following I583, and 
ending in about 1591, it has been customary also to assume 
that the Queen's company played regularly, when in London, 
at Burbage's Theatre during these years ; and that the Lord 
Admiral's company, between I585 and I59 I, played princi- 
pally at the Curtain. There is very slîght foundation for the 
former, and hot the slightest for the latter, assumption, both of 
which were first mooted by Halliwell-Phillipps, and in which 
he has since been followed blindly by the compilers. The 
supposition that the Queen's company ruade their London 
centre at the Theatre from 1583 onwards, is based upon the 
disproved assumption that Burbage was the manager of this 
company. This supposition has been supported by the 
argument that Tarleton, who was a member of the Queen's 
company affer I583, is mentioned in 1592 , in Nashe's 


Pierce Penniless, as having "made jests" "at the Theatre," 
° O"  
and again in Harrln,ton s )Vfetamorhosis of Ajaz in 1596, as 
follows- "Which word was after admitted into the Theatre 
by the mouth of Mayster Tarleton, the excellent comedian." 
As Tarleton died in 1588 these references cannot apply to 
the "Theatre" later than this date, and if they apply at all 
to Burbage's Theatre and the term is hot used generically, 
they apply toit in the years preceding  583, when Tarleton 
played at the Theatre as a member of Lord Leicester's 
company. The author of Marthz's lk[ont]z's 27find, in 1587, 
refers to "twittle twattle that I learned in aie-bouses and at 
the Theatre of Lanam and his fellowes." This also probably 
refers to the period preceding 583, when Laneham was a 
member and evidently the leader of Leicester's company and 
after Burbage had retired from its leadership. In lVews out 
of Purgatory, published in I587, in which the ghost of 
Tarleton appears, "the Curtaine of his Countenance" is 
mentioned, which apparentl¥ alludes to his recent connection 
with that bouse. 1 While it is possible, however, that the 
Queen's company may have performed occasionally at the 
Theatre after their formation in  582-83 and before the Rose 
was built in I587, ail evidence and logical assumption 
regarding the regular playing-places of the Queen's and the 
Admiral's companies when in London, between I586 and 
I589, infer that the Queen's company played at the Curtain, 
and after 1587, at the Rose, and the Lord Admiral's company, 
in conjunction with the Lord Chamberlain's, at the Theatre 
in summer and the Crosskeys in winter. 
Towards the end of this period a rivalry existed between 

x That Tadeton was a member of the Queen's company in I588 i$ shown by 
a refetence in his will, which is dated in this year, to "my fellow, William 


the Queen's company and the combined companies playing 
under Burbage at the Theatre, which ended in I59I in the 
supersession for Court performances of the Queen's company 
by Lord Strange's players--a new company of which Richard 
Burbage was a member, which had been organised out of the 
best actors from the defunct companies of the Lord Chamber- 
lain and Lord Leicester, and with accretions from the Lord 
Admiral's company and Lord Strange's company of boy 
acrobats; which latter had for about a year past been 
affiliated in some manner with the Lord Admiral's company, 
which, in turn, had worked in conjunction with Burbage's 
players (the Lord Chamberlain's company) since I585-86. 
For this connection between the Lord Admiral's company 
and the company of Lord Hunsdon, who was now Lord 
Chamberlain, we have record of a Court performance on 
6th January I586, which was paid for on 3Ist January- 
"The Lord Admiral's and the Lord Chamberlain's players 
were paid for a play before the Queen on Twelfth Day." 
While two companies of players, meeting accidentally in 
the provinces, might at times have combined their forces in 
an entertainment, we may assume that in Stlch cases each 
would give a short interlude from their own stock of plays, 
and not that they joined action in the saine play. A per- 
formance before the Court, however, was no haphazard 
thing, but something that had been carefillly rehearsed; 
hence, when we find--as in the case of the Lord Admiral's 
players and the Lord Chamberlain's players, mentioned 
above--members of two companies uniting in a play before 
the Court and receiving one payment for it, it is apparent 
that they must have acted in the saine play, and also that 
such a play had been previously rehearsed. Burbage's 
Theatre being the theatrical home of his company, known, 


until I585, as Lord Hunsdon's company, and after that date, 
when Lord Hunsdon became Lord Chamberlain, as the 
Lord Chamberlain's players, it becomes evident that the 
rehearsal of plays for the Court would take place at the 
Theatre in the summer or the inn used by Burbage and his 
company in the winter-tîme, and that the members of the 
Lord Admiral's company, who had acted with him in the 
Court performance mentioned, would rehearse at the same 
places. As we find Lord Strange's company preparing to 
act in the winter-time of 589 at the Crosskeys, when they 
were refused permission to do so by the Lord Mayor, and as 
we know also that--as the Lord Chamberlain's men--in 
1594, after their separation from Henslowe, they again 
sought leave to act there in the winter season, we may infer 
that Burbage's men used this saine inn for winter perform- 
ances previous to I589. Lord Hunsdon's letter to the Lord 
Mayor in December 1594, referring to the Crosskeys, reads : 
"Where my now company of players have byn accustomed 
• . . to play this winter time within the City." 
While both the Lord Admiral's and Lord Hunsdon's 
players performed occasionally in the provinces previous to 
I59I, the limited number of their provincial appearances, 
taken in conjunction with the fact that they were of sufficient 
importance to play at intervals before the Court, during the 
years that the Queen's company--which had been specially 
formed for that purposeheld sway, implies that they were 
players of recognised importance. 
While it is apparent that Burbage ceased to be an active 
member of Leicester's players at or soon after the rime he 
undertook the responsibilities of the management of the 
Theatre, he evidently continued to work under the protection 
of the Earl of Leicester, as the owner of the Theatre and of 


the organisation known as Leicester's musicians, as late as 
 582, when he secured the protection of Lord Hunsdon, and 
in transferring took with him his theatrical musicians, who 
now became Lord Hunsdon's and, later, the Lord Chamber- 
lain's musicians. The first and last mention of Lord 
Leicester's musicians as distinct from the players in any of 
the records is in r582, when they are mentioned in the 
Coventry records as accompanying Lord Leicester's players. 
These were evidently Burbage's theatrical musicians who 
accompanied Leicester's men to Coventry, as we find them 
accompanying the Admiral's men to the saine place a few 
years later under the title of the "Lord Chamberlain's 
Itis evident that Leicester's company continued tobe 
Burbage's rnost permanent customer in the use of the 
Theatre as late as I585, and that they acted there until that 
date in conjunction with Lord Hunsdon's men, who were 
Burbage's theatrical employees, and mostly musicians. 
Some rime in, or before, June I585, seven of the more 
important actors of Leicester's company sailed for the 
Continent, where they remained till July r587. In June 
t 585 the remnant of Leicester's company joined forces with 
the new Admiral's company. They are recorded as acting 
together at Dorer in this month. It is apparent that 
Leicester's men had corne to this port to see their fellows 
off for the Continent, and that they were joined there by the 
Admiral's men by pre-arrangement. This performance of 
the Admiral's men, in conjunction with the remnant of 
Leicester's men at Dover, is the first record we possess for 
many years of any company under this title. The next 
record is a performance before the Court in the following 
Christmas season, when we find them acting conjointly with 


the Lord Chamberlain's men, ¢.e. Burbage's men, recently 
Lord Hunsdon's. It is evident that they had now taken the 
place of Leicester's men as Burbage's permanent company at 
the Theatre, holding much the same relations to him as 

Lord Strange's men held 
1592 and 1594. 
Both Leicester's and 
appear from the records 

to Henslowe at the Rose between 

Lord Hunsdon's companies dis- 
at the saine date (588-89), and 

Lord Strange's players appear for the first rime as a regular 
London company of players, performing in the City of 
London and at the Crosskeys in the same year. Three 
years later, when we are enabled, for the first time, to learn 
anything of the personnel of this company, we find among 
its members Thomas Pope, George Bryan, and, later on, 
William Kempe, all of them members of Leicester's company 
before 589. We also find in Lord Strange's company, in 
592, Richard Burbage, who, without doubt, between 584 
--in which year he first began as a player--and 589, was a 
member of his father's company,--Lord Hunsdon's,--known 
as the Lord Chamberlain's company affer 585. It becomes 
apparent, then, that early in the year 589 a junction of 
forces took place between the leading actors of the com- 
panies previously known as Lord Strange's tumblers, Lord 
Itunsdon's, or, as it was then known, the Lord Chamberlain's 
company, and the Earl of Leicester's players--the new 
organisation becoming known as Lord Strange's players. 
This company continued under the patronage of Lord 
Strange, under his successive titles of Lord Strange and the 
Earl of Derby, until his death in April 594; they then, for 
a short period, passed under the patronage of his widow, the 
Countess of Derby, when they again secured the patronage 
of Lord Hunsdon--who was still Lord Chamberlain. 


Belote the combination between these companies took 
place in December 588, or January 589, it is evident that 
an alliance of some kind was formed between the leading 
men of Lord Strange's tumblers and the Lord Admiral's 
company. 1 For several years, between about 58o and 587, 
Lord Strange's company was merely a company of acrobats, 
or tumblers, composed of boys and youths. In the provincial 
records they are mentioned at rimes as "Lord Strange's 
tumblers,"" Symons and his fellowes," and as "John Symonds 
and Mr. Standleyes Boyes" (Lord Strange's naine being 
Fernando Stanley). The Lord Admiral's players, on the 
other hand, were clearly a regular company of players who 
presented plays, yet we find them paid for Court perform- 
ances in 1588 and  589, and also " For showing other feats 
of activitye and tumblinge." In the following year they are 
again paid for a Court performance where "feates of 
activitye" are also mentioned. The last performances of 
this nature given by the Lord Admiral's players were on 
27th December I59o and I6th February 59. The record 
of payment for these performances makes mention of "other 
feates of activitye then also done by them." Upon the 5th 
of Match I59I the payment for these performances is re- 
corded in the Acts of the Privy Council to the Lord Admiral's 
company, while--as Mr. E. K. Chambers has pointed out-- 
in the Pipe Rolls (542 fol. 156 ) these saine performances 
are assigned to Strange's men. It is evident, then, that late 
in 588 (the first performance of this nature being recorded 
on the 27th of December) a junction took place between 
certain members of Lord Strange's tumblers and the Lord 

t Previous to the affiliations between Strange's tumblers and the Lord 
Admiral's company they seem to have maintained intermittent relations with 
the Queen's company, and are sometimes mentioned as the Queen's tumblers. 


Admiral's men, who had been connected since 1585 with the 
Lord Chamberlain's men, and that, at the saine rime, the 
leading members of Lord Leicester's company became 
affiliated with them. 
In the following Christmas season, 1591-92,Lord Strange's 
players--now thoroughly organised into a regular company 
of playersmgave six performances before the Court, 
supplanting the formerly powerful and popular Queen's 
company, which gave only one performance in that season, 
and never afterwards appeared before the Court. There is 
no further record of a Court performance by the Lord 
Admiral's company until the Christmas season of I594-95, 
by which rime they had parted from the Lord Chamberlain's 
men and reorganised by absorbing members from other 
companies--such as the Earl of Sussex and Earl of 
Pembroke's companies, which at this rime disappear from 
the records. 
Here, then, we find, between the Christmas season of 
I588-89 and I591-92, an amalgamation into one com- 
pany of a portion ot the membership of four different 
companies, ail of which had, immediately before, been asso- 
ciated in some measure with the theatrical interests of the 
While a chance record remains which reveals official 
action in the formation of the Queen's company of players 
in I583, and no actual record of official action has yet been 
found to account for the sudden Court favour accorded the 
new and powerful Lord Strange's company in I591, # is 
very apparent that an equally authoritative flurflose existed iu 
the latter case. 
Between the years I574 aud I583 the Earl of Leicester's 
company, under the auspices of James Burbage, held the 


position of the leading company of players in London. 
During the Christmas and New Year festivities in every 
year but one in this decade, Leicester's company played 
before the Court, being supplanted by the newly formed 
Queen's company in 1583-84. 
Howes states in his Additions to Stowe's Ckronides that 
"in I583 twelve of the best players were chosen out of 
several great Lords' companies and sworn the Queen's 
servants, being allowed wages and liveries as Grooms of 
the Chamber," and among these, two players, Thomas 
(Robert) Wilson and Richard Tarleton, were chosen. As 
these players and John Laneham were taken from Lord 
Leicester's company it has been incorrectly inferred that 
James Burbage--who is known to have been the leader of 
the company as late as I575uwent with them to the 
Queen's company at this rime. 
It is apparent that changes so important in the several 
companies affected by the disruption of their memberships 
could hot be ruade in a very short rime, and that test 
performances and negotiations of some duration preceded 
the actual amalgamation of the new company. Burbage's 
reason for securing Lord Hunsdon's patronage in 582 was, 
no doubt, because of Leicester's departure for the Continent 
in this year and the disorganisation of Leicester's company, 
caused by the formation of the new Queen's company at 
the saine period. 
Between 1583 and 59o, while other companies per- 
formed occasionally at the Court, the Queen's company 
performed during the Christmas festivities every season-- 
and usually upon several occasions--in each year. In the 
Christmas season of I59-92 , however, they performed only 
once, and then for the [ast time on record, while Lord 


Strange's company appeared in this season upon six 
occasions. This company, under its various later titles, 
retained the position it had now attained--of the |eading 
Court company--for the next forty years. It is evident, 
then, that the amalgamation of the leading members of 
Lord Strange's acrobats, the Lord Chamberlain's, the Earl 
of Leicester's, and the Lord Admiral's players, which I 
have shown began in tentative Court performances in the 
Christmas season of I588-89, and which culminated in the 
success of the thoroughly organised company in the season 
of I591--92 , was--at least in its later stage--fostered by 
similar official sanction and encouragement to that which 
brought about the formation of the Queen's company in 
I582-83. Edmund Tilney, the IV[aster of the Revels, who 
chose the players for the Queen's company in I583, held 
the saine position in 159, and evidently exercised a similar 
function in forwarding the promotion .of Lord Strange's 
company, and the discarding of the Queen's company for 
Court purposes in the latter year. It is significant that 
Henslowe, the ovner of the Rose Theatre, where Lord 
Strange's players commenced to perform on I9th February 
I592 , was ruade a Groom of the Privy Chamber in that 
year, and that the weekly payments of his fees to Tilney, 
in connection with his new venture, begin at that rime. 
Henslowe became the financial backer of this company in 
I59, at which rime, it shall be shown, later on, that James 
Burbage's fortunes were at a low ebb, and that he also was 
in disfavour with the authorities. Henslowe evidently was 
brought into the ail'air by Tilney's influence, the office of 
Groom of the Privy Chamber being a reward for his com- 
pliance. It shall be indicated that Tilney and Henslowe 
had probably held similar relations in connection with the 


Queen's company, which evidently performed at the Rose 
under Henslowe between 1587 and I59 I. 
I have shown a connection between Burbage's company, 
Le. the Lord Chamberlain's, and the Lord Admiral's com- 
pany between I585 and 1589, and will now inquire into the 
previous identity of the latter company. 
A company performing under the licence of Lord Charles 
Howard of Effingham appears in the Court records between 
1574 and 1577. Between I58I and June I585 there are no 
provincial records of any company performing under this 
nobleman's licence, and, until 6th January 1586, no Court 
records. On this latter date a company licensed by this 
nobleman, who was now Lord Admiral, appeared at Court 
working in conjunction with the Lord Chamberlain's com- 
pany. The last provincial visit of Lord Howard's old 
company is at Ipswich in lç8l. The first provincial record 
of his new company--the Lord Admiral's--is at Dover in 
June 1585, when the entry reads: "Paid unto my Lord 
Admiralles and my Lord Lycestors players -o shillings." 
This seems to shoxv that the new Admiral's company had 
joined forces with the remnant of Lord Leicester's players, 
the depletion of which company at this time was occasioned 
by the departure of seven of their members, including Kempe, 
Pope, and Bryan, for Denmark. 
Their next recorded provincial visit is to Ipswich under 
date of 2oth February 1586 , when they are mentioned as the 
Lord Admiral's players. In this saine year they appear at 
Cambridge, also as the Lord Admiral's players. On I Sth 
November I586 they are recorded at Coventry as having 
been paid twenty shillings, and immediately following, 
under the same date of entry, the Lord Chamberlain's men 
are recorded as being paid three shillings and fourpence, 


and on I Sth November I587 they are again recorded at 
Coventry as receiving twenty shillings; and again, under 
the saine date, is an entry recording the payment of rive 
shillings "to the Lord Chamberlain's Musicians that came 
with the Judge at the assizes." 
The juxtaposition of the entries on these records of the 
names of these two companies in 1586 and I587, and their 
union in a performance before the Court in January I586, 
shows that a combination of some sort between them was 
formed in x 585. IVho, then, were tke men that composed the 
Lord Adniral's company from 1585 to 1589 ? 
In I592 , when Lord Strange's players left Burbage to 
perform under Henslowe at the Rose, we are assured that 
Eward Alleyn was the manager of the company, and, 
though the manager of Lord Strange's company, that he 
still styled himself a Lord Admiral's man. When, then, did 
Edward Alley n, who is mentioned in the Leicester records 
in I584 as a member of the Earl of Worcester's company, 
become a Lord Admiral's man and cease to perform under 
the licence of the Earl of Worcester? Is it not palpable 
that the change took place in I585, when all records of 
Worcester's company cease for several years and a new 
Lord Admiral's company begins? The last record of a 
provincial performance for Worcester's company is at 
Barnstaple in I585. The Court and provincial records of 
I586 show that within about eight months of its inception 
the Lord Admiral's company worked in conjunction with 
Burbage's players--the Lord Chamberlain's men. That 
this connection continued in the case of Edward Alleyn 
and a few others of the Admiral's men, who were old 
Worcester men, and that they preserved their licensed 
identity through the several changes in the title of the 


company, until they finally separated early in 1594, shall 
be ruade apparent in this history. 
Itis evident that Edward Alleyn's brother, John Alleyn, 
joined the Admiral's men at about the time of its inception, 
when his old company, Lord Sheffield's players, suddenly 
disappear from the records. Their last recorded provincial 
performance is in Coventry, under date of 15th November 
1585, lhe Lord Ad»ffral's zen and tire Lord Chazberlain's 
en beinff recorded there under the sagace dale of entry. John 
Alleyn continued his connection with the Lord Admiral's 
men at least as late as July 1589, when he is mentioned as 
"servant to me the Lord Admiral" in aletter from the 
l'rivy Council to certain aldermen. After this he is hot 
heard of again either in conncction with Lord Strange's or 
the Admiral's men. He was evidently one of the discarded 
actors in the reorganisations of 1589-91. 
Past critics, ignoring the fact that there are no records of 
either Court, London, or provincial performances for Wor- 
cester's company between I585 and I589-9o, have assumed 
that this company was in existence during theseyears, and 
that it was disrupted and reorganised in 1589, Edward 
Alleyn leaving it and joining the Lord Admiral's men at 
that period. This inference is drawn erroneously from the 
following facts: first, that Richard Jones, who is recorded 
in 1584, in the Leicester records, as a member of Lord 
Worcester's company, in January 1589, sold to Edward 
Alleyn his share in theatrical properties, consisting of play- 
ing apparel, playbooks, instruments, etc., owned by him 
conjointly with Robert Brown, Edward Alleyn, and his 
brother, John Alleyn, ail of whom are supposed to have 
been members of Worcester's company at that rime, as 
Brown and Edward Alleyn are also recorded in 1584 as 


members of that company; secondly, that John Alleyn 
is mentioned as a servant to the Lord Admiral later on in 
thîs year; and thirdly, that Edward Alleyn, when managing 
Lord Strange's company in I593, is also mentioned as a 
Lord Admiral's man. 
In the light of the foregoing facts and deductions it is 
evident that the Earl of Worcester's company, or at least a 
large portion of it, became rite Lord Md«Mral's compa 
585, and that, at about the saine time, they became 
affiliated with Burbage and the Lord Chamberlain's com- 
pany. Itis probable, however, that in making this change 
they discarded some of their old members and took on 
others, John Alleyn evidently joining them from Sheffield's 
company at that rime. 
The new licence they sought and secured in 585 was 
evidently made necessary by the disfavour and iii repute 
which the ill-regulated behaviour of some of their members-- 
whom they now discarded--had gained for them. In June 
t583 the Earl of Worcester's company was refused per- 
mission to perform in Ipswich, the excuse being given that 
they had passed through places infected by the plague. 
They were, however, given a reward on their promise to 
leave the city, but instead of doing so they proceeded to 
their inn and played thcre. The Mayor and Court ordered 
that the Earl of Worcester should be notified, that this 
company should never again receive a reward from the city, 
and that they leave at once on pain of imprisonment. 
Though the Mayor and Court, at the entreaty of the com- 
pany, agreed hot to inform the Earl of their misconduct, it 
is not unlikely that this and similar happenings came to 
his knowledge, as they seem to have had little respect 
for municipal authorities. They were again in trouble in 


March 1584, whcn they quarrelled with the Leicester 
authorities. Finding at their inn at Leicester the com- 
mission of the Master of the Revels' company, which in 
leaving Leicester three days before this company had in- 
advertently left behind, they appropriated it and presented 
it to the Leicester authorities as their own, stating that the 
previous company had stolen it from them. Not being 
belîeved, they were forced to produce their own licence, 
when they were refused permission to play, but given an 
augel to pay for their dinner. Later in the day, meeting 
the Mayor on the street, they again asked leave to play, 
and, being refused, abused the Mayor with "evyll and con- 
tcmptuous words, and said they would play whether he 
wold or hot," and went "in contempt of the Mayor with 
drum and trumpct through the town." On apologisinglater 
to the Mayor and begging him hot to inform the Earl of 
Worcester, they secured leave to play on condition that they 
prefaced their performance with an apology for their mis- 
conduct and a statement that they were permitted to pla¥ 
only by the Mayor's goodwill. 1 
If their past reputation had been good in Leicester there 
seems tobe no reason why the¥ should have wished to 
perform under another company's licence. We may infer 
that these were hot isolated instances of their misbehaviour, 
and that their change of title in 1585 was ruade necessary 
by reports of their misconduct coming to the notice of the 
old Earl of Worcester. No company of players is known to 
have acted under this nobleman's licence after I585. 
In x589, when the process of amalgamation between the 
Lord Admiral's, the Lord Chamberlain's, and Lord Leicester's 
companies, and Lord Strange's acrobats, which resulted in 
I English 19ratualic Companies, I558-t642 , p. 43, by John Tucker Murray. 


the formation of Lord Strange's company, was under way, 
discarded metnbers of their companies, including, no doubt, 
some of the players of the old Worcester company, secured 
a licence from the new Erl of Worcester and continued to 
perform--though mostly as a provincial company--until 
16o3. Other old members, including Robert Brown--the 
leader of the former Worcester companyand Richard 
Jones, formed a new company for continental performances. 
Brown and others continued to make continental trips for 
years afterwards, while Richard Jones rejoined the Lord 
Admiral's men in 1594, after they and the Lord Chamber- 
lain's men had separated. 
It was plainly, then, Richard Jones' share in the stage 
properties of the Lord Admiral's company that Eward 
Alleyn bought in I589. It is apparent that he also bought 
out his brother's and Robert Brown's shares, as neither of 
them afterwards appeared as Strange's or Admiral's men. 
This would give Edward Alleyn entire ownershilo of tke 
proioerties of the Admiral's comioany, and, consequently, an 
important share in the new amalgamation. 
It was on Burbage's stage, then, that this great actor 
between I585 and I589--after having spent several years 
touring the provinces--entered upon and established his 
metropolitan reputation, attaining in the latter year, at the 
age of twenty-three, a large, if hot the largest, share in the 
properties and holdings, and also the management of 
the strongest company of players in England, as well as 
the reputation of being the greatest actor of the rime. 
It somewhat enlarges our old conception of the beginnings 
of Shakespeare's theatrical experiences and dramatic inspira- 
tion to know, that when he entered into relations with James 
Burbage, in 1586--8, and for from four to six years afterwards, 


he had as intimate associates both Edward Alleyn and 
Richard Burbage; two young men of about his own age, 
who were alread), winning a good share of the notice and 
appreciation that later established them as the leading 
actors of the age. Which of them was the greater was one 
of the moot questions of the day eight to ten years later, 
when they had become the star actors of rival companies, 
and those the foremost two in London. 
It is now pertinent to inquire as to which of these 
companies, if to any, Shakespeare was connected previous 
to the amalgamation, and also, whether or not he became a 
member of Lord Strange's company, along with Richard 
Burbage, and acted under, or wrote for, Alleyn and 
Henslowe between I59I and I594. 
The suggestion which was first made by Mr. Fleay--in 
which he has since been followed by encyclopœedists and 
compilers--that Shakespeare joined Lord Leicester's com- 
pany upon one of its visits to Stratford-upon-Avon in I586 
or 1587, is plainly without foundation in the light of the fore- 
going facts, as is also his assumption that Lord Strange's 
company was merely a continuation of Lord Leicester's 
company under new patronage. 
Lord Leicester's company spent the greater part of the 
years between I585-86 and I589 performing in the provinces. 
The records of its provincial visits outnumber ail of those 
recorded for the other three companies concerned in the re- 
organisation of 589. If Shakespeare acted at all in these 
early years he must have done so merely incidentally. 
When we bear in mind the volume and quality of his 
literary productions, between 159I and  594, it becomes 
evident that his novitiate in dramatic affairs in the dark 
years, between x585-86 and 59z, was of a literary rather 


than of an histrionic character, though he also acted in those 
years. He would have round little rime for dramatic 
composition or stud¥ during these years had he accompanied 
Lord Leicester's company in their provincial peregrinations. 
Bearing in mind his later habit of revising earlier work it is 
hot unlikely that some of his dramatic work, which from 
internal and external evidence we now date between I59I 
and 1594, is rewritten or revised work originally produced 
belote 1591. 
It is palpable that Shakespeare had hot been previously 
affiliated with Lord Strange's acrobats, nor a member of the 
Lord Admiral's company, and evident, in view of the above 
facts and deductions, as well as of his future close and con- 
tinuous connection with James Burbage, that his inceptive 
years in London were spent in his service, working in 
various capacities in his business and dramatic interests. It 
is apparent that between 586-87 and  588-89 Shakespeare 
worked for James Burbage as a bonded and hired servant. 
In Henslowe's 1)iary there are several instances of such 
bonds with hired servants, and covenant servants, covering 
terres of years--usually from two to three--between 
Henslowe and men connected with the Lord Admiral's 
company. It shall be shown later that Nashe in his 
preface to Greene's Menahon alludes to Shakespeare in this 
The title of jrohannes factotum, which Greene, in 1592 , 
bestowed upon Shakespeare, as well as the term "rude 
groome," which he inferentially applies to him, when coupled 
with the tradition collected by Nicholas Rowe, his earliest 
biographer, who writes : " He was received into the company 
then in being, at first, in a very mean tank, but his admirable 
wit, and the natural turn of it to the stage, soon distinguished 


him, if not as an extraordinary actor, yet as an excellent 
writer," all point to a business rather than to an exclusively 
histrionic connection with the Burbages in his earlier London 
years. These evidences are confirmed by the gossip of 
William Castle, who was parish clerk of Stratford for many 
years, and who was born two years belote Shakespeare died, 
and, consequently, must bave known and talked with many 
people who had known Shakespeare. He frequently told 
visitors that Shakespeare was first received in the playhouse 
as "a servitor." When the legal usage and business customs 
of that period, as exhibited in legal records and in 
Henslowe's 1)iary, are considered it becomes apparent that 
a youth of from twenty-one to twenty-three years of age, 
newly come to London, with no previous training in any 
particular capacity, with a bankrupt father and without 
means of his own, could not very well associate himself with 
a business concern in any other capacity than that of an 
indentured apprentice or bonded and hired servant. With- 
out such a legally ratified connection with some employer, 
a youth of Shakespeare's poverty and social degree, and a 
stranger in London, would be classed before the law as a 
masterless man and a vagrant. The terre "servitor" then 
does not refer to his theatrical capacity--as stated by 
Halliwell-Phillipps--but to his legal relations with James 
Burbage, his employer. Only sharers in a company were 
classed as "servants" to the nobleman under whose 
patronage they worked; the hired men were servants to the 
sharers, or to the theatrical owner for whom they worked. 
Being connected with the Burbages between 1586-87 
to 1588-89, whatever theatrical training Shakespeare may 
bave received came undoubtedly from his association with 
the Lord Admiral's and Lord Hunsdon's companies, which 


performed at the Theatre in Shoreditch as one company 
during these years, combining in the saine manner as 
Strange's company and the Lord Admiral's company did, 
under Henslowe and Alleyn at the Rose, between 1592-94. 
Though in later life he was reputed tobe a fair actor, he 
never achieved great reputation in this capacity; it was 
plainly not to acting that he devoted himself most seriously 
during these early years. Working in the capacity of 
handy-man or, as Greene calls him, jrohannesfactotum, for the 
Burbages, besides, possibly, taking general charge of their 
stabling arrangements,--as tradition asserts,---he also, no 
doubt, took care of the theatrical properties, which included 
the MSS. and players' copies of the plays owned by the 
company. Though Shakespeare's grammar school days 
ended in Stratford he took his collegiate course in Burbage's 
Theatre. During the leisure hours of the years of his 
servitorship he studied the arts as he found them in MS. 
plays. I shall show, later, that Robert Greene, throuffh the 
pen of his coadjutor, Thonas Nashe, in an earlier attack than 
that of 1592, refers to Shakespeare's servitorship and to the 
acquisitions of knowledffe he tade durinœ his idle hours. 
That he ruade good use of his rime and his materials, how- 
ever, is demonstrated by the fact that in the four years 
intervening between the end of 159o and the end of 1594, 
he cornposed, at least, seven original plays, two long poems, 
and over sixty sonnets ; much of this work being since and 
still regarded--three hundred years after its production-- 
as a portion of the world's greatest literature. 
While itis apparent, even to those critics and biographers 
who adroit the likelihood that Shakespeare's earliest connec- 
tion with theatrical affairs was with the Burbage interests, 
that Lord Strange's company--of which they, erroneously, 


suppose that he still continued to be a member--ceased to 
perform under James 13urbage in, or before, February 1592, 
when they began to play under Alleyn and Henslowe's 
management at the Rose Theatre, no previous attempt has 
been made to explain the reasons for Lord Strange's 
company's connection with Henslowe, or to accourir for the 
fact that no plays written by Shakespeare were presented 
by this company while they performed at the Rose Theatre, 
though it is very evident, and admitted by ail critics, that 
he composed several original plays during this interval. 
As it is probable that James 13urbage, through his son 
Richard, retained some interest in Lord Strange's company 
during the period that it acted under Henslowe's and 
Alleyn's management, the question naturally arises, Why 
should Lord Strange's company, which was composed largely 
of members of Leicester's and Hunsdon's company, both 
of which, affiliated with the Admiral's men, had been 
previously associated with the 13urbage interests--why should 
this company, having Richard Burbage in its membership, 
enter into business relations with Henslowe and perform 
for two years at the Rose Theatre instead of playing under 
James 13urbage at the Theatre in Shoreditch in summer, 
and at the Crosskeys in winter, where they formerly played ? 
A consideration of the business affairs of James 13urbage 
will show that the temporary severance of his business 
relations with Strange's men was due to legal and financial 
difficulties in which he became involved at this time, when 
strong financial backing became necessary to establish and 
maintain this new company, which, I have indicated, had 
been formed specially for Court performances. It also 
appears evident that he again incurred the disfavour of Lord 
13urghley and the authorities at this rime. 


In the following chapter I analyse the reasons for the 
separation of Strange's company from Burbage at this time 
and give inceptive evidence that Shakespeare did not 
accompany Strange's men to Henslowe and the Rose, but 
that he remained with Burbage as the manager and principal 
writer for the Earl of Pembroke's company--a fact regarding 
his history which has not hitherto been suspected. 



A LMOST from the time he first began to operate 
the Shoreditch Theatre in 576, until his death in 
597, James Burbage had trouble rioto one source 
or another regarding his venture. Both the Theatre, and 
the Curtain at Shoreditch, seem to have been particularly 
obnoxious to the puritanical element among the local 
authorities, who ruade numerous attempts to have both 
theatres suppressed. There were long intervals during the 
term of Burbage's lease of the Theatre when, owing to 
various causes, both the Theatre and the Curtain were 
closed. Among the causes were--the prevalence of the 
plague, alleged rioting, and the performance of plays which 
infringed the law prohibiting the presentation of matters 
of Church and State upon the stage. Burbage's Theatre 
came into disfavour with the authorities in I589 owing to 
the performance there of plays relating to the Martin 
Marprelate controversy; and that it was the combined 
Strange's and Admiral's company that was concerned in 
these performances, and not the Queen's, as is usually 
supposed, is evident from the fact that in November, when 
they moved to their winter quarters in the City at the 
Crosskeys, the Lord Mayor, John Hart, under instructions 


from Lord Burghley, issued orders prohibiting them from 
performing in the City. It is not unlikely that their 
connection with the Martin Marprelate affair earlier in the 
year at the Theatre, and their deliberate defiance of the 
Mayor's orders in performing at the Crosskeys on the after- 
noon of the day the prohibition was issued, delayed the full 
measure of Court favour presaged for them by their recent 
drastic--and evidently officially encouragedmreorganisation. 
When they performed at Court in the Christmas seasons 
of 1589-9o and 159o-9 I, they did so as the Lord Admiral's 
men; and in the latter instance, while the Acts of the Privy 
Council credit the performance to the Admiral's, the Pipe 
Rolls assign it to Strange's men? Seeing that the Admiral's 
men had submitted dutifully to the Mayor's orders, and that 
Lord Strange's men--two of whom had been committed 
to the Counter for their contempt--were again called before 
the Mayor and forbidden to play, the company's reason for 
performing at Court at this period as the Lord Admiral's 
men is plainly apparent. It is hot unlikely that their 
transfer to Henslowe's financial management became 
necessary because of Burbage's continued disfavour with 
Lord Burghley and the City authorities, as well as his 
financial inability adequately to provide for the needs of the 
new Court company, in I59I. In the defiance of Burghley's 
and the Mayor's orders by the Burbage portion of the 
company, and the subservience of the Alleyn element at this 
time, is foreshadowed their future political bias as independent 
companies. From the rime of their separation in I594 until 
the death of Elizabeth, the Lord Admiral's company repre- 
sented the Cecil-Howard, and Burbage's company the Essex 
factional and political interests in their covert stage polemics. 
 E. K. Chambers in 3lodern Language Review, Oct. I9O6. 


Shakespcare's friendship and intimacy with Essex's fidus 
Achates, the Earl of Southampton, between 59 and I6OI, 
served materially to accentuate the pro-Essex leanings 
of his company. This phase of Shakespeare's theatrical 
career has hot been investigated by past critics, though 
Fleay, Simpson, and Feis recognise the critical and bio- 
graphical importance of such an inquiry, while the compilers 
do hot even suspect that such a phase existed. 
While the Curtain seems to have escaped trouble arising 
from its lease and its ownership, the Theatre came in for 
more than its share. The comparative freedom of the 
Curtain from the interference and persecution of the local 
authorities in these years was evidently due to the fact that 
it was the recognised summer home of the Queen's company 
between 584 and I59I. It is evident that during the 
winter months the Queen's company performed at the Rose 
between 1587--when this theatre was erected--and the end 
of 1590 ; it was superseded at Court by Lord Strange's 
company at the end of I59I , and was disrupted during 
this year--a portion of them continuing under the two 
Duttons, as the Queen's men. The Rose, being the most 
important, centrally located, theatre available for winter 
performances during these years, would naturally be used by 
the leading Court company. It is significant that Lord 
Strange's company commenced to play there when they 
finally supplanted the Queen's company at Court. It is 
probable that they played there also before it was recon- 
structed during 1591. 
The large number of old plays formerly owned by the 
Queen's company, which came into the hands of the 
companies associated with Henslowe and Burbage at this 
rime, suggests that they bought them from Henslowe, who 


had retained them, and probably other properties, in pay- 
ment for money owed him by the Queen's company which, 
having been several years affiliated with him at the Rose, 
would be likely to have a similar financial experience to 
that of the Lord Admiral's men, who, as shown by the 
Diary, got deeply into his debt between 1594 and 598. 
The Queen's company was plainly hOt in a prosperous 
financial condition in I591. It is apparent also that some 
Queen's men joined Strange's, and Pembroke's men at this 
time bringing some of these plays with them as properties. 
In building the Theatre, in 1576, Burbage had taken his 
brother-in-law, one John Brayne, into partnership, agreeing 
to give him a half-interest upon certain terres which Brayne 
apparently failed to meet. ]3rayne, however, claimed a 
moiety and engaged in a lawsuit with Burbage which 
dragged along until his death, when his heirs continued the 
litigation. Giles Allen, the landlord from whom Burbage 
leased the land on which he had built the Theatre, evidently 
a somewhat sharp and grasping ]ndividual, failed to lire up 
to the terres of his lease which he had agreed to extend, 
provided that Burbage expended a certain amount of money 
upon improvements. There was constant bickering between 
Allen and Burbage regarding this marrer, which also eventu- 
ated in a lawsuit that was carried on by Cuthbert and 
Richard Burbage after their father's death in I597. Added 
to these numerous irritations, came further trouble from a 
most unlooked-for source. In 1581, Edmund Peckham, son 
of Sir George Peckham, on the most shadowy and far- 
fetched grounds, questioned the validity of Giles Allen's title 
to the land he had leased to Burbage, and not only entered 
a legal claire upon it, but found a jury to agree with him. 
This suit also continued for years. 


In turbage and Shakespeare's Stage, which is the best 
account yet written of Burbage and his affairs, Mrs. Stopes 
evidently gives all available details regarding his legal 
ernbarrassments. Mrs. Stopes' account makes it clear that 
by the year 59I, James Burbage could not have amassed 
much wealth in the practice of his profession, though we may 
infer that he had enriched a number of lawyers. In the 
legal records examined by Mrs. Stopes, I learn that upon 
Ioth January 59 an attachment on the Theatre was 
awarded against Burbage for contempt of court on the plea 
of one Robert Miles, and though several attempts were 
ruade in the meantime to have the matter adjudicated, that 
the attachment was still in force in November 159I ; there is 
apparently no record as to when and how the marrer was 
finally settled and the attachment lifted. It evidently held 
three months later when Lord Strange's company commenced 
to perform under Henslowe at the Rose, or at least as late 
as December and January 1591-92 , in which months 
Henslowe repaired and enlarged the Rose in anticipation of 
the coming of Strange's company. I have reason to believe 
that some settlement was ruade regarding the attachment 
upon Burbage's Theatre early in  59z, and that the Earl of 
Pembroke's company played there when in London from 
that rime until we lose sight of them late in x593. In the 
spring of I594 their membership and properties were 
absorbed by the Lord Admiral's company and Lord 
Strange's company, most of the properties they had in the 
way of plays going to the latter. 
The Rose Theatre was first erected in 587. 13), the 
year I59z, when Lord Strange's players commenced to 
appear there, it evidently needed to be repaired and enlarged. 
Between the 7th of March and the end of April I59Z, 


Henslowe paid out over IOO for these repairs; the work 
paid for having been done in the few months preceding 
I9th February I592 , when Lord Strange's company com- 
menced to perform there. 
Henslowe was much too careful a business man to invest 
the large sure of money in the enlargement and repair of the 
Rose Theatre, which he did at this rime, without the assur- 
ance of a profitable return. When his other business trans- 
actions, as shown in his 1)iary, are considered it becomes 
apparent that in undertaking this expenditure he would 
stipulate for the use of his house by Lord Strange's men for 
a settled period, probably of, at least, two years, and that 
Eward Alleyn, who was the manager of Lord Strange's 
rnen at this rime, and continued to be their manager for the 
next two years,--though still remaining the Lord Admiral's 
man,--was Henslowe's business representative in the company. 
Alleyn married Henslowe's stepdaughter in October, this 
year, and continued to be his business associate until 
Henslowe's death, when, through his wife, he became his 
heir. Lord Strange's company, under this and the later 
title of the Lord Chamberlain's men, continued to perform at 
theatres owned or operated by Henslowe, and probably also 
under Alleyn's management, until the spring of 1594, when 
it appears that they returned to Burbage and resumed perform- 
ances, as in I589-9 I, at the Theatre in Shoreditch in summer, 
and at the Crosskeys in winter. 
The assumption that Shakespeare was a member of Lord 
Strange's company while it was with Henslowe, is based 
upon three things: first, the undoubted fact that his close 
friend and coadjutor, Richard Burbage, was one of the lead- 
ing members of the company at that rime; secondly, that 
Tke Firat ]art of ]-Zenry VL, in an early form, was presented 


as a revised play by Lord Strange's men at the Rose, upon 
3rd Match I592, and upon several subsequent occasions 
while they were with Henslowe; thirdly, an alleged refer- 
ence to Shakespeare's naine in Pecle's Edward L, which was 
owned by the Lord Admiral's players after 1594, and presum- 
ably written for them when Shakespeare acted with the 
company before I592. Let us examine these things in 
At first sight ît is a plausible inference, in view of Shake- 
speare's earlier, and later, connection with the Burbages, that 
he should continue to be associated with Richard Burbage 
during these two years. When the reason for the formation 
of Lord Strange's company is remembered, however, it 
becomes clear that Richard Burbage would be a member 
for the very reason that Shakespeare would hot. The 
intention in the formation of this company being to secure 
an organisation of the best actors for the services of the 
Court, it is evident that Richard Burbage--who even at this 
early date was one of the leading actors in London--would 
be chosen. Shakespeare never at any rime attained distinction 
as an actor. 
The presentation of Hnry VI., Part I., by Lord Strange's 
players, as a reason for Shakespeare's membership, infers 
that he was the author of this play, or, at least, its reviser 
in I;92, and that the Talbot scenes are his. This, conse- 
quentIy, implies that Nashe's commendatory references to 
these scenes were complimentary to work of Shakespeare's 
in 1592. It is evident that the play of l-finry VI., acted 
by Lord Strange's men in Match I;92 , and commended 
by Nashe, was much the saine play as I-Yenry Pl., Part I., 
included in all editions of Shakespeare. Textual criticism 
has long since proved, however, that this was not a new 


pla¥ in 1592-- though marked "ne" by Henslowe-- but 
merel¥ a revision. Three hands are distinctl¥ traceablc in 
it; the unknown original author who wrote the opening 
lines : 
" Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to night ! 
Comets, importing change of rimes and states, 
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky, 
And with them scourge the bad revolting stars 
That have eonsented unto Henry's death !" 

Whoever wrote these lines, it is very palpable that Shake- 
speare did hot. The second hand in the pla¥ was the 
reviser of 1592 who introduced the Talbot passages. There 
cannot be the slightest doubt that this was George l'eele, 
who in I592, and for some time before and later, was the 
principal producer and reviser of plays for the Lord 
Admiral's compan¥. The classical allusions in the Talbot 
scenes, and the manner in which they are always lugged 
in by the car, as though for adornment, plainly proclaim 
the hand of Peele, and as plainl¥ disassociate Shake- 
speare from their composition. The third hand is clearl¥ 
Shakespeare's. The "Temple Garden" scene has been 
accepted b¥ practically ail critics as unquestionabl¥ his 
work; it is not the work, either, of his "pupil pen." His 
revision was evidentl¥ not made until 1594, when the 
Lord Chamberlain's compan¥ brought the MS. with them 
as a portion of their properties, upon their return to 
Burbage. The references to red and white roses, as the 
badges of Lancaster and York, were evidentl¥ then intro- 
duced by Shakespeare in order to link together, and give 
dramatic continuit¥ to, the whole historical series connected 
with the Wars of the Roses, upon which he had already 
worked, or was then working for his company. There is 
not a single classical allusion in the "Temple Garden" 


scene, while there are twenty-seven classical allusions in 
the whole play: eight of them being in the Talbot passages. 
In Shakespeare's Rictcard I/.--which I shall give good 
evidence was written within about a year of Che time 
Chat Henry VI. was presented as a new play--there are 
two classical allusions. In any authentic play by Marlowe, 
Greene, or Peele of an equal length there will be found 
from forty to eighty classical allusions, besides, as a rule, 
a number of Latin quotations. In revising Che first part 
of Hen'y VI. in, or after, I594, it is evident that Shake- 
speare eliminated many classical allusions, and that in the 
early work which he did upon T/ce Contention, and also in 
his final revision of The Contention, into the second and 
third parts of Hen 7 [zI., he eliminated classical allusions, 
reducing the average in these plays to from thirty to 
thirty-five. In his own acknowledged historical plays, 
tichard II., King" John, Richard III., Henry IV., and 
Henry V., ttzere is hot an average of sic classical allusions. 
When the settled animus which Nashe, in conjunction 
with Greene, between 1589-92, displays against Shakespeare 
is better understood, the utter improbability of his referring 
to Shakespeare's work in a laudatory manner in the latter 
year shall readily be seen. When, also, Che high praise 
which Nashe bestows upon Peele in the saine publications 
in which he attacks Shakespeare is noted, it becomes evident 
Chat he again intends to commend Peele in his compli- 
mentary allusion to the Talbot scenes. Peele was Che 
principal writer and reviser for Henslowe at this period, 
while hot one of Shakespeare's plays is mentioned in his 
whole Diary. 
While I believe that the reference to Shakespeare's 
name in Edward Lwwhich was first noticed by Mr. Fleaym 


was actually intended by Peele, the passage in which it 
occurs pertains to an earIy form of the play, which was 
old when it was published in 1593. It was written by 
Peele for the Lord Admiral's company before their con- 
junction with Strange's men under Henslowe, and at the 
rime when they acted with Lord Hunsdon's company at 
the Theatre in Shoreditch in summer, and at the Crosskeys 
in the winter. It is significant that this play was hot acted 
by Lord Strange's men during their tenure of the Rose 
Theatre, and that in 1595, after they had separated from 
Henslowe, it was revised and presented as a new play by 
the Lord Admiral's company. It is quite likely that it 
was the property of Pembroke's company in 1592-93. The 
allusion to Shakespeare in this play is probably the first 
evidence we possess of the well-authenticated fact that as 
an actor he usually appeared in kingly parts. It is recorded 
of him that he played the part of the ghost in lamlet, and 
his friend, John Davies, the poet, writes in I6o3 : 

" Some say, good Will, which I in sport do sing, 
Hadst thou not played some kingly parts in sport, 
Thou hadst been a companion for a King." 

The reference to his name by Peele in Edward L, in which 
play Shakespeare evidently took the part of John Baliol, 
the Scottish King, is as follows : 

" Shine with thy golden head, 
Shake thy speare, in honour of his name, 
Under whose royalty thou wear'st the mme." 

Against the assumption that Shakespeare acted with 
Lord Strange's cornpany under Alleyn and Henslowe for 
two years, there is some positive, and much inferential, 
evidence, the strongest of the latter being that between 


the end of I59o and the middle of I594, at about which 
latter date the Lord Chamberlain's company parted from 
Henslowe, Shakespeare produced,--as I shall later demon- 
strate,--in addition to Veus and tdatis, Lucrece, and nearly 
half of the whole body of his Sonnets, at least seven new 
plays, not one of which was performed at the Rose by 
Lord Strange's company. The remainder of the evidence 
against this assumption shall develop in this history. 
We may infcr that Henslowe in entering into business 
relations with Lord Strange's company would make quite 
as binding a contract with them as we find him making 
a few years later with the Lord Admiral's men. In those 
contracts he binds the players to play at the Rose and 
"at no other house publicly about London"; further 
stipulating that should the London theatres be closed by 
the authorities for any reason "then to go for the rime 
into the country, then to return again to London." 
The fact that his manager, and son-in-law, Edward 
Alleyn, accompanied Lord Strange's men upon their pro- 
vincial tour in I593, when, owing to the plague, the London 
theatres were closed by order of the Council, implies a 
similar understanding with this company. 
The words "in any other house publicly about London" 
in Henslowe's contracts with players apparently infer that 
they retained the right of giving private and Court per- 
formances upon their own account and for their own profit. 
The money they received for Court performances appears 
to have belonged exclusively to the players, as the total 
amount collected by them is at rimes turned over to 
Henslowe in part payment of their corporate indebtedness 
to him, and credited to them in full. Had Henslowe shared 
in thcse payments his portion would bave been deducted 


from the credits. It is evident that he was merely the 
financial backer of, and nota sharer in, this company. 
In the apparently comprehensive list of the members 
of Lord Strange's company--as it existed early in I592-- 
which was owned by Edward Alleyn and is now preserved 
at Dulwich College, while Pope and Bryan, who came from 
Leicester's company, and Richard Burbage and others, 
no doubt, who came from Lord Hunsdon's company are 
mentioned, Shakespeare's naine does not appear. There 
is no reason why he should hot have been mentioned in 
this list had he been a member of the company at that 
time. About three years later, when Strange's men had 
separated from Henslowe and the Admiral's men, and 
returned to Burbage, Shakespeare is mentioned, with 
William Kempe and Richard Burbage, in the Court records 
as receiving payment for Court performances, from which 
we may infer that he was regarded as one of the leading 
members of, and was also a sharer in, the company at 
this rime. 
Where, then, was Shakespeare during the period of 
Henslowe's management ? What company of players per- 
formed in the plays he produced between about the end of 
1590 and the middle of I594, which are--The Cotedy of 
Errors, Zove's Zabour's Zost, Zove's Zabour's Won, The 
Two Gentle»zen of I/¥rona, King John, Richard 11., Richard 
111., and Midsum»zer Night's Z)reant? Later on I shall 
advance conclusive evidence to prove that ail of these plays 
were written in this interval, though most of them were 
materially revised in later years. 
In order to answer these questions it will be advisable to 
revert to a consideration of the drastic changes which took 
place between the end of 1588 and the beginning of 1592, in 


the comparative standing, as well as in the personnel, of 
several of the most prominent companies of players. I have 
shown that early in I589 a union took place between the 
leading members of Lord Strange's tumblers, the Lord 
Admiral's, the Lord Chamberlain's, and the Earl of Leicester's 
men. If an average of only three men were taken from each 
of these companies--forming a company of twelve players, 
which was then regarded as a large company--it would 
necessarily leave a considerable number of men free to make 
new connections, as three of the companies involved in the 
changes disappear from the records at that rime. Thereafter 
we hear no more of Lord Strange's tumblers, nor of Lord 
Leicester's, nor Lord Hunsdon's players. Itis hot unlikely, 
then, that while some of the players discarded from the three 
companies that had gone out of existence would drift into 
different existing companies, that some of them would unite 
to form a new company. The disruption of the Queen's 
company in I59O-9I would also leave some men at large. 
As most of these men had been previously connected with 
well-known companies, which performed principally in 
London, it is likely that they would endeavour to continue 
as London performers instead of forming a provincial 
That such a company for London performances was 
actually formed some time in 159I is evident in the appearance 
of a company--hitherto unheard of for sixteen yearsmunder 
the patronage of the Earl of Pembroke. Between the years 
I576 and I592 there is no mention of a company acting 
under this nobleman's licence in either the provincial or Court 
records, nor is there any mention of, or reference to, such a 
company in any London records. 
All we know about this new company is that record of it 


appeared for the first time in December 1592, when it played 
twice before the Court; that it returned to London in the 
early autumn of 593 after a disastrous tour in the provinces, 
being compelled to pawn a portion of its properties to pay 
expenses; that Marlowe wrote Edward 11. for it in about 
 593 ; that T/ze True Traed3, of tlze l?ube of York was one 
of its properties, and that Shakespeare was connected with 
either the revision or the theatrical presentation of this play 
at the period that it belonged to Pembroke's company, i.e. in 
592, as he is attacked by Greene on that score at this time. 
Owing to the prevalcnce of the plague in London in 1593, 
and early in 1594, the public performance of plays was 
prohibited. The Earl of Pembroke's company, which had 
failed to make its expenses travelling, and which was not 
allowed to play in London on account of the plague, evidently 
disrupted in the spring or summer of I594; and as some of 
its members joined Henslowe at this rime and some of the 
properties came to the Burbage organisation, we may infer 
that they were brought as properties by men who came from 
Pembroke's company to Burbage. 
Edward Alleyn, who toured the provinces in the summer 
or I593 with Lord Strange's company, and for the same 
reason that Pembroke's toured at this time, i.e. owing to the 
plague in London, wrote to Henslowe in September 593, 
from the country, inquiring as to the whereabouts of 
Pembroke's company, and was told by Henslowe that they 
had returned to London rive or six weeks before, as they 
could not make their charges travelling. He further informed 
him that he had heard that they were compelled to pawn 
their apparel. The fact that the fortunes of Pembroke's 
company should be a matter of interest to Alleyn and 
Henslowe appears to imply that it was a new theatrical 


venture of some importance, and that it probably had in its 
membership some of the Admiral's, Strange's, or Queen's 
company's old players. That a new company should play 
twice before the Court, in what was evidently the first or 
second year of its existence, speaks well for the influence of 
its management and for the quality of its plays and perform- 
ances. After this mention of Pembroke's company in 
Henslowe's letter to Alleyn in September I593, we hear 
nothing further concerning it as an independent company 
until I597. At that rime Gabriel Spencer and Humphrey 
Jeffes, who were evidently Pembroke's men in I592--93, 
became members of, and sharers in, the Lord Admiral's 
company, with which they had evident|y worked--though 
under Pembroke's licence--between 1594 and 1597. 
Itis now agreed by critics that the Admiral's and Chamber- 
lain's men, who had been united under Alleyn for the past 
two years, divided their forces and fortunes in June 1594, or 
earlier. It is evident that some of Pembroke's compan¥'s 
plays were absorbed by the Lord Chamberlain's company, 
and that a few of the Pembroke men joined the Lord 
Admiral's company at this time. As evidence of the absorp- 
tion of the plays of Pembroke's men by Lord Strange's 
players is the fact that between 3rd and I3th June I594, 
when Strange's players acted under Henslowe for the last 
rime, three of the seven plays they then presented,--ltanlet, 
Indronicts, and The Ta»zin of a Shrew,--while ail old 
plays, were new to the repertory of Strange's company 
presented upon Henslowe's stages, and furthermore, that ail 
three of these plays were rewrittenmor alleged to have been 
rewritten--by Shakespeare. At about the saine time that 
Pembroke's company ceased to exist the Earl of Sussex's 
company, which had recentl¥ played for Henslowe, was also 


disrupted. It is evident that some of these men joined the 
Lord Admiral's and the Lord Chamberlain's companies also, 
and that in this manner the Lord Chamberlain's company 
secured A,zdronicus, which had lately been played by the 
Earl of Sussex's men as well as by Pembroke's men. 
Humphrey Jeffes and Gabriel Spencer, whose names are 
mentioned in The True Tragedy of the JDul«e of York, which 
was played by Pembroke's company in I592-93, and who, 
we may therefore infer, were members of Pembroke's company 
in those years, or else were members of the company that 
previously owned this play, are mentioned as playing with 
the Lord Admiral's company as Pembroke's mon in I597. 
The naine of John Sinkler, who is mentioned as one of Lord 
Strange's men in Edward Alleyn's list, which evidently 
represents the company as it appeared in the first performance 
of Four Plays in One at the Rose Theatre upon 6th March 
I592, also appears with that of Gabriel Spencer and 
Humphrey Jeffes in The True Tra#edy of tire Duke of York. 
From this we may infer either that Sinkler left Strange's 
company and joined Pembroke's men after this date, or else 
that he, Spencer, and Jeffes, before x 592, were members of the 
company that originally owned the play. It is very evident 
that the originals of the three parts of Henry VI. were old 
plays composed at about the rime of the Spanish Armada, 
and, it is generally agreed, for the Queen's company. As 
Tke True Traedy of tlte JDuke of York in common with 
Iamlet and The Ta»zin# o fa Shrew--was also later revised 
or rewritten by Shakespeare, into the play now known as 
Hnry VI., Part III., it evidently came from Pembroke's 
company to Lord Strange's company, along with Itamlet and 
T/te Ta,1,ing of a Shrew in I594. Later on I shall adduce 
evidence showing that The Tamin# of a Skrew and ttamlet 


were owned and acted by a company, or companies, associated 
with the Burbage interests previous to the amalgamation of 
f589, and that The True Traçcdy of the Du/ce af York, which 
was an old play in I592, probably originally written by 
Greene, was revised in that year by Marlowe and Shakespeare 
for Pembroke's company, and that its final change into the 
play now known as Hezry VI., Part III., was made by 
Shakespeare in, or after, 1594, when he rejoined the Lord 
Chamberlain's company. 
Within a year of the rime that Marlowe, with Shake- 
spearc, revised The True Tragedy of the Duke of York for 
Pembroke's men in 592, Marlowe also wrote Edward IL 
for this company, Shakespeare producing Richard II. for 
the company at the same rime. The friendly co-operation 
between Shakespeare and Marlowe, which I shall show 
commenced in I588-89, and which aroused Greene's jealousy 
at that rime, was evidently continued until the death of 
Marlowe in June I593. Itis in the historical plays com- 
posed or revised between I59I-93 by Shakespeare that 
Marlowe's influence is most apparent, as also is Shake- 
speare's influence upon Marlowe in his one play which we 
know was produced at the same period. Edward Il. is 
much more Shakespearean in character than any other of 
Marlowe's plays. Itis evident that their close association 
at this rime reacted favourably upon the work of each of 
The deductions I draw from these and other facts and 
inferences still tobe developed, is, that shortly after the 
Lord Admiral's and Lord Strange's men passed under 
Alleyn's and Henslowe's management, some rime between 
Christmas I59O and Christmas I59I, Shakespeare formed 
Lord Pembroke's company, becoming its leader and also its 


principal producer of plays, and that it was through his 
influence and the reputation that certain of his early plays 
had already attained in Court circles that this new company 
was enabled to appear twice before the Court in the 
Christmas season of I592. To demonstrate this hypothesis 
it will be necessary to revert to a consideration of Shake- 
speare's status in theatrical affairs between 588-89 and 




N considcring the conditions of Shakespearc's life at the 
beginning of his career in London, and his application 
to the College of Heralds for a grant of arms in 
596, it must be borne in mind that social distinctions and 
class gradations at that rime still retained much of their 
feudal significance. At that period an actor, unless pro- 
tected by the licence of a nobleman or gentleman, was 
virtually a vagrant before the law, while felonies committed 
by scholars were still clergyable. When Ben Jonson was 
indicted for killing Gabriel Spencer in 1598, he pleaded and 
received benefit of clergy, his only legal punishment consist- 
ing in having the inside of his thumb branded with the 
Tyburn "T," and it is unlikely that even this was inflicted. 
While a university degree thus enhanced both the social 
and legal status of sons of yeomen and tradesmen, the sons 
of equally reputable people who became actors were corre- 
spondingly debased both socially and legally. 
Though the established status which the actors' profession 
attained during Shakespeare's connection with the stage-- 
and largely through his elevating influence--made these 
legal disabilities of an actor a dead letter, it stilI continued 
to militate against the social standing of its members. John 


Davies leaves record that at the accession of James I. it was 
gossiped that Shakespeare, had he hot formerly been an 
actor, instead of being appointed Groom of the Privy 
Chamber, might have received the higher appointment of 
Gentleman of the Privy Chamber. This idea owed its birth 
to Shakespeare's friendship with the Earl of Southampton, 
whose influence in the early days of the new Court--when 
he himself stood high in favour--secured the office for his 
other protégé, John Florio, one of the gentlemen by the 
grace of a university degree who joined issue with the 
"university pens" against Shakespeare, and who in conse- 
quence--as I shall later demonstrateshall be pilloried to 
far-distant ages in the character of Sir John Falstaff. 
Though Shakespeare had acquired a legal badge of gentility 
with his coat of arms in 599, the histrionic taintaccord- 
ing to Davies--proved a bar to his official promotion. 

" Some say, good Will, which I in sport do sing, 
Hadst thou not played some kingly parts in sport, 
Thou hadst been a companion to a King 
And been a King among the meaner sort." 

Arrogance towards social inferiors, as well as servility to 
superiors, is always manifested most offensively in the 
manners of those who are themselves conscious of equivocal 
social standing. I shall adduce evidence to prove that from 
the rime we first begin dimly to apprehend Shakespeare in 
his London environment, in 588-89, until his final return to 
Stratford in about 6o, he was continuously and spitefully 
attacked and vilified by a coterie of jealous scholars who, 
while lifted above him socially by the arbitrary value attach- 
ing to a university degree, were in no other sense his 
superiors either in birth or breeding. It was evidently, then, 
the contemptuous attitude of his jealous scholastic rivais, as 


well as the accruing material advantages involved, that 
impelled Shakespeare in 596 to apply, through his father, 
to the College of Heralds for official confirmation of a grant 
of arms alleged to have been ruade to his forebears. 
Shakespeare's earliest scholastic detractor was Robert 
Greene, who evidently set much store by his acquired 
gentility, as he usually signed his publications as "By 
Robert Greene, Master of Arts in Cambridge," and who, 
withal, was a most licentious and unprincipled libertine, 
going, through lais ill-regulated course of life, dishonoured 
and unwept to a pauper's grave at the age of thirty-two. 
After the dcath of Greene, when his memory was assailed 
by Gabriel Harvey and others vhom he had offended, his 
friend Nashe, who attempted to defend him, finding it 
difficult to do so, makes up for the lameness of his defence 
by the bitterness of his attack on Harvey. Nashe, in fact, 
resents being regarded as an intimate of Greene's, yet his, 
and Greene's, spiteful and ill-bred reflections upon Shake- 
speare's social quality, education, and personal appearance, 
between 589 and I592 , were received sympathetically by 
the remainder of the "gentlemen poets,"--as they styled 
themselves in contradistinction to the stage poets,--and used 
thereafter for years as a keynote to their own jealous abuse 
of him. 
John Florio, in his First Fruites, published in 59I, and 
after he had entered the service of the Earl of Southampton, 
though not yet assailing Shakespeare personally, as did 
these other scholars, appears as a critic of his historical 
dramatic work. 
In 1593 George Peele, in his Iozour of the Garter, 
re-echoes the slurs against Shakespeare voiced by Greene 
in the previous year. In the same year George Chapman, 


who thereafterwards proved to be Shakespeare's arch-enemy 
among the "gentlemen scholars," caricatures him and his 
ail'airs in a new play, which he revised, in conjunction with 
John Marston, six years later, under the title of IistriomastLv, 
or T]ze Player IV]dlt. Neither the authorship, date of pro- 
duction, nor satirical intention of the early form of the play 
bas previously been known. 
In 1594 Chapman again attacks Shakespeare in The 
Hymns to t]e S]adow of 2ViE]t , as well as in the prose 
dedication written to his colleague, Matthew Roydon. In 
the same year Roydon enters the lists against Shakespeare 
by publishing a satirical and scandalous poem reflecting 
upon, and distorting, his private affairs, entitled Willobie his 
Avisa. From this rime onward until the year I609-IO, 
Chapman, Roydon, and John Florio--who in the meantime 
had joined issue with them--continue to attack and vilify 
Shakespeare. Every reissue, or attempted reissue, of 
Villobie his .d visa was intended as an attack upon Shake- 
speare. Such reissues were ruade or attempted in 1596- 
I599-16o5 and I6O9, though some of them were prevented 
by the action of the public censor who, we have record, 
condemned the issue of 1596 and prevented the issue of 
1599. As no copies of the I6O5 or I6O9 issues are now 
extant, itis probable that they also were estopped by the 
authorities. In I598-99 these partisans (Chapman, Roydon, 
and Florio) are joined by John Marston, and a year later, 
also by Ben Jonson, when, for three or four years, Chapman, 
Jonson, and Marston collaborate in scurrilous plays against 
Shakespeare and friends who had now rallied to his side. 
In about 1598 Thomas Dekker and Henry Chettle joined 
sides with Shakespeare and answered his opponents' attacks 
by satirising them in plays. John Florio, while hot partici- 


pating in the dramatic warfare, attacks Shakespeare viciously 
in the dedication to his Worlde of Wordes, in I598, and 
comes in for his share of the satirical chastisement which 
Shakespeare, Dekker, and Chettle administer to them in 
acted, as well as in published, plays. 
As Ben Jonson's dramatic reputation became assured 
the heat of his rivalry against Shakespeare died down; 
his vision cleared and broadened and he, more plainly than 
any writer of his rime, or possibly since his rime, realised 
Shakespeare in his true proportions. Jonson, in time, rires 
of Chapman's everlasting envy and misanthropy, and 
quarrels with him and in turn becomes the object of 
Chapman's invectives. After Shakespeare's death Jonson 
made amends for his past iii-usage by defending his memory 
against Chapman, who, even then, continued to belittle his 
While various critics have from rime to rime appre- 
hended a critical attitude upon the part of certain con- 
temporary writers towards Shakespeare, they have usually 
regarded such indications as they may have noticed, merely 
as passing and temporary ebullitions, but no conception of 
the bitterness and continuity of the hostility which actually 
existed has previously been realised. Much of the evidence 
of the early antagonism of Greene and Nashe to Shakespeare 
has been entirel¥ misunderstood, while their reflections 
against other dramatists and actors are supposed to bave 
been directed against him. Past critics have been utterly 
oblivious of the fact that Florio, Roydon, and Chapman 
and others colluded for many years in active hostility to 
In publications issued between x585 and I592 Robert 
Greene vents his displeasure against various dramatic 


writers whose plays had proved more popular than his, as 
well as against the companies of actors, their managers, and 
the theatre that favoured his iivals. The wiiters and 
actor-managers whom he attacks bave been variously 
identified by past writers. Mr. Richard Simpson, one of 
the most acute, ingenious, and painstaking pioneers in 
Shakespearean research, whose School of S/taeseare was 
issued after his death in I878, supposed that all of Greene's 
attacks in these years, including those in which his friend, 
Thomas Nashe, collaborated with him, were directed 
against Shakespeare and Marlowe. Since Mr. Simpson 
wrote, however, now over forty years ago, some new light has 
been thrown upon the theatrical companies, and their con- 
nection with the writers of the period with which he dealt, 
which negatives man), of his conclusions. While itis 
evident that Greene was jealous of, and casts reflections 
upon, Marlowe, to whom he refers as " Merlin " and "the 
athiest Tamburlaine," Mr. Fleay bas since proved that 
several of Greene's veiled reflections were directed against 
others. Mr. Fleay's suggestion that Robert Wilson was the 
Roscius so frequently referred to by Greene and Nashe is, 
however, based upon incorrect inference, though he proves 
by several characteristic parallels, which he adduces between 
lines in Tire Tltree Ladies of London, The Three Lords and 
Three Ladies, and 'air Em,--the last of which is satirically 
alluded to by Greene in his Farewell to 'olly, in 159I,--that 
they were ail three either written, or revised, by the saine 
hand. While his ascription of the composition of the first 
two of these plays to Wilson is probably also correct, his 
assumption that Wilson was a writer and an actor for Lord 
Strange's company in I59I was due to lack of collected and 
compiled records concerning the Elizabethan companies of 


players at the time he wrote, which have since been ruade 
available. 1 
There is nothing whatever known of Robert Wilson 
after 583, when he is mentioned, along with Tarleton, as 
being selected by Tilney, the Master of the Revels, for the 
Queen's company. In an appended note I analyse the 
literary evidence upon which Mr. Fleay associates Robert 
Wilson with Strange's company in I589-9I.  
I English yDramatic Companies, 1558-1641, by John Tucker Murray. 
2 In 1594 Cuthbert Burbie published a play entitled The Cobbler's lroîhecy, 
the authorship of which is ascribed to " R. Wilson" on the title-page. The 
textual resemblances between this play, 7"he ledlar's l'ro2hecy, The Three 
Ladies of London, and The Three Lords and Three Ladies, and certain parallels 
between the two latter and Fait tm, all of which plays were published 
anonymously, led Mr. Fleay to credit all of them to Wilson, in which--ex- 
cluding Fait /m--he was probably correct. Ail of these plays, with the 
exception of The Pedlar's lrophecy, were either Burbage's or Admiral's pro- 
perties. The Three Lords and Three Ladies was published for Richard Jones 
in I59O , and The Cobbler's lrophecy for Cuthbert Burbie in 1594. AI1 plays 
published for Richard Jones were formerly old Admiral's properties, and nearly 
ail the early plays published for Cuthbert Burbie old Burbage properties. 
Fait tm, while hOt published until 1631 , records on the title-page that it was 
acted by Lord Strange's company. Tke lëdlar's lrophecy was, however, pub- 
lished by Thomas Creede, ail of whose publications Mr. Fleay has found were 
old Queen's properties. Admitting, then, that all of these plays were written 
by Robert Wilson, the latter play must have been written by him for 
the Queen's company later than I58Z-83, when he left Leicester's 
company. It appears probable also that the earlier plays--The Three Zadies 
and The Cobblers lrophecy--were written for Leicester's company before that 
date, and retained by Burbage when he severed his connection with Leicester's 
men, or else, that they were retained by Leicester's men as company properties 
and brought to Strange's men in x588-89 by Kempe, Pope, and Bryan, when 
their old company disbanded. It is evident, then, The Three Lords and Three 
Ladies, which Mr. Fleay admits is merely an amplification of the old play of 
The 7"hree Ladies, which he dates as being first published in I584, was a re- 
vision ruade when ail these plays became Strange's properties, and that the 
scriptural parallels between The Three Lords and Three Ladies, The Three 
Ladies, and Fait Em, which are quite absent in The ledlar's lrophecy--the 
only one of these plays ascribed in the publication itself to Wilsonware due to 
the revisionary efforts of the " theological poet" referred to by Greene as doing 
such work for Strange's company, and as having had a hand in 1rait tm, which 
was acted in about 159o , in which year The Thme Lords and Three Zadies» 


Robert Wilson must have been pass as an actor in 1589, 
if indeed he was then living, while Strange's company was 
composed of younger and rising men, all recently selected 
for their histrionic abilities from several companies, amongst 
which shows similar scriptural characteristics, was published. From a time 
reference in the earlier form of this play--The Three Ladi«s--in the first scene, 
"not much more than twenty-six years, it was in Queen Mary's time," Mr. 
Fleay arbitrarily dates from the last year of blary's reign, and concludes that it 
may have been acted by the Queen's company in x584. He admits, however, 
that it does hOt appear in the list of the Queen's men's plays for this year, and 
later on infers from other evidence that the allusion to twenty-six years from 
Queen MŒEry's rime probably referred to the first date of publication, which is 
unknown, but which he places, tentatively, in 1584. "That it was played 
by the Queen's men," he writes, "is shown under the next play,--The Three 
Lords alzd Three Zadies,--which is an amplification of the preceding play per- 
formed shortly after Tarleton's death in about I588. Mr. Fleay writes further : 
"If I rightly understand the allusions, Tarleton acted in IVt't azd IYill in 
i567-68. The ailusion to Tarleton's picture shows that Tarleton's Jesls, in 
which his picture appears, had already been published. The statement that 
Simplicity probably acted by XVilson himself), Wit, and XVill had acted with 
Tarleton, proves that the present play was acted by the Queen's men." 
In arguing to place Robert Wilson as a member of Strange's company in 
x588-$9, Mr. Fleay borrows both premises and inference from the facts to 
support his theory. He is no doubt right in dating the original composition of 
Tke Three Ladies ofLondon before 1584, and probably also in attributing all of 
these plays to Wilson, but, seeing that they were ail Burbage properties in 
1589-9 o, is it not evident that The Three Laclies of Zondon was an old Leicester 
play produced by Wilson before 158z-83, when he and Burbage left that company, 
and either that Burbage then retained possession of it, or, that it was brought 
to Strange's men by Pope, Kempe, and Bryan in  589 ? Mr. Fleay admits that 
The Three Lords and Three Ladies is merely an anaplification of TAc Three 
Mies ruade after Tarleton's death, whieh oeeurred in 1588. It seems apparent, 
then, that the scriptural phrazeology noticeable in The Three Ladies, The Three 
Zords and Three Ladies, and Fait m, whieh led Mr. Fleay to impute the last 
to Wilson's pen, and also to eonneet him as a writer and an actor with Lord 
Strange's eompany in 1589-9 o, is the work of the " theological poet" indieated 
by Greene and Nashe as having had a hand in Fait Em in 1589. It is also 
evident that the aetors who took the parts of Simplicity, Wit, and Will,--in The 
Three Lords and Three Ladies,--who had formerly acted with Tarleton, were 
Kempe, Pope, and Bryan, Strange's men, who were all formerly Leicester's men. 
It is much more likely that these old members of Leicester's company, who in 
Tarleton's rime would have been juniors in the eompany, would reeall and boast 
of their old eonneetion, than that his late associates in the Queen's eompany 
would do so within a year or two of his death. 


which, it appears evident, the Queen's company was hot 
then included, though it is likely that in 1591 some Queen's 
men joined Strange's company. That Robert Wilson was 
not the Roscius referred to by Greene and Nashe in I589 
and I59o a further examination of the evidence will fully 
The person indicated as Roscius by Nashe in his Address 
to Greene's Menaphon in I589, and iu Greene's Nver Too 
Late in 1590» was the leading actor of a new company that 
was then gaining great reputation, which, however, was 
largely due--according to Nashe--to the pre-eminent excel- 
lence of this Roscius' acting. The pride and conceit of 
this actor had risen to such a pitch, Nashe informs us in his 
A natomy of A bsurdity ( 589), that he had the "temerity to 
encounter with those on whose shoulders ail arts do lean." 
This last is a plain reference to George Peele, whom he had 
recently described in his V[enaîOhon "Address" as "The 
Atlas of Poetry." In the following year Greene refers to 
the saine encounter in the first part of his 2Vever Zoo Late. 
Pretending to describe theatrical conditions in Rome, he 
again attacks the London players and brings in Roscius-- 
who without doubt was Edward Alleyn--as contending with 
Tully, who is Peele. "Among whom," he writes, "in the 
days of Tully, one Roscius grew to be of such exquisite 
perfection in his faculty that /te offered ta contend with the 
orators of that tinte in esture as they did in doquence, boasting 
that he wouM express a passion Dt as many sundry actions 
as Tully could discourse it in a variety of phrases. Yet so 
proud he grew by the daily applause of the people that he 
looked for honour or reverence to be done him in the streets, 
which conceit when Tully entered into with a piercing in- 
sight, he quipped it in this manner: 


" It chanced that Roscius and he met at dinner both 
guests unto Archias, the poet, when the proud comedian 
dared to make comparison with Tully. Why Roscius art 
thou proud with AEsop's crow, being prankt with the glory 
of others' feathers? Of thyself thou canst say nothing and 
if the cobbler hath taught thee to say Are Cesar disdain hot 
thy tutor because thou pratest in a King's chamber. What 
sentence thou utterest on the stage flows from the censure 
of our wits, and what sentence or conceit the people applaud 
for excellence, that cornes from the secrets of our knowledge. 
I grant your acting, though it be a kind of mechanical 
labour, yet well done, 'ris worthy of praise, but you worthless 
if for so small a toy you wax proud." 
Here again Tully is ieele, and Greene is merely describ- 
ing more fully the alleged encounter between .A_lleyn and 
Peele, mentioned by Nashe the year before in 2/te AnatalioE 
of Absurdity. 
Though it has never been noticed before, in this 
connection, we possess in Edward Alleyn's own papers 
preserved at Dulwich College a remarkable confirmation of 
this emulation, which, however, Greene and Nashe distort 
to the prejudice of Alleyn, who, as shall be shown, was 
innocent in the affair. The whole thing arose from admirers 
of Alleyn's among the theatre-frequenting gentry offering 
wagers to friends who championed Peele in order to provide 
after-dinner entertainment for themselves, by putting the 
poet and the player on their mettle in "expressing a 
passion "--the one in action and the other in phrases. 
Alleyn refused the contest " for fear of hurting Peele's 
credit," but gossip of the proposed wager got abroad and 
was distorted b¥ the scholars, who affected to be insulted by 
the idea of one of their ilk contending with a player. Fail- 


ing to bring about this match, Alleyn's backers, not to be 
beaten, and in order, willy-nilly, to make a wager on their 
champion, evidently tried to get Alleyn to display his 
powers before friends who professed to admire Bentley and 

KnellX--actors of a slightly earlier date, who were now 
either retired from the stage or dead. The following letter 
and poem were evidently written in I589, as Nashe's 
reference to the "encounter," which is the first notice of it, 
was published in this year: 

"Your answer the other nighte, so well pleased the 
Gentlemen, as I was satisfied therewith, though to the 
hazarde of ye wager; and yet my meaninge was hot to 
prejudice Peele's credit ; neither wolde it, though it pleased 
you so to excuse it, but beinge now growen farther into 
question, the partie affected to Bentley (scornynge to wynne 
the wager by your deniall), hath now given you libertie to 
make choice of any one playe, that either Bentley or Knell 
plaide, and least this advantage, agree not with your minde, 
he is contented, both the plaie, and the rime, shall be 
referred to the gentlemen here present. I sec hot, how you 
canne any waie hurte your credit by this action ; for if you 
excell them, you will then be famous, if equall them; you 
wynne both the wager and credit, if short of them ; we must 
and will sale Ned Allen still.MYour frend to his power, 
Deny me hot sweete Nedd, the wager's downe, 
and twice as luuche, commande of me and myne: 
And if you wynne I sweare the hall is thyne ; 
and for an overplus, an English Cowne. 
Appoint the tyme, and stint it as you pleas, 
Vour labor's gaine ; and that will prove it case. » 

(addressed) "To Edward Allen." 

t Bentley was a Queen's player in 584, and probably came from Sussex's 
company to the Queen's upon the organisation of that company in 1583. 


This letter to Edward Alleyn from his friend "W. P." is 
finely written in an English, and the verses in an Italian, hand. 
The words, " Ned Allen," "sweete Nedd," and " English 
Crowne" are in gilt letters. 1 The occasion and its instiga- 
tion must bave been of interest to illiyn for him to bave 
preserved the letter for so many years; his reason for doing 
so evidently being to enable him to refute Greene's published 
and widely circulated misconstruction of it. It is evident 
that both the letter and poem were written while Alleyn 
was still young, when he already had ardent admirers, and 
his reputation was growing but not generally admitted, and 
at about the rime that Peele had commenced to write for 
his company. Alleyn was twenty-four years old in 589, 
and already regarded by many as the best actor in Lolldoll. 
George Peele, who had written for the Queen's company in 
the past, at about, or shortly after, this date, began to write 
for Strange's company. His Edward/., which was published 
in 593, was undoubtedly written between 589-9, when 
Shakespeare was still connected with Strange's men. 
The "cobbler" who taught Roscius to say "Ave Coesar " 
was Christopher Marlowe, whose father was a shoemaker. 
Marlowe was the principal writer for Burbage at this period, 
and continued so until his death in 1593. " Ave Coesar " and 
"a King's chamber" are references to the play of Edzvard 
III., which I shall demonstrate later was written by Marlowe, 
though revised by Shakespeare after Marlowe's death. It 
is the only known play of this period in which the expression 
" Ave Caesar" occurs. 
In many of Greene's romances the central figure has 
been recognised as a more or less fancifll autobiographical 
1 This letter and the verses are printed in I-Zc,sloate's Papers, p. 3 2, W. W. 
Greg, I9o7, and in the works of several earlier editors. 


sketch. In his last work, / Groatsworth of lVit, in the 
introduction to which he makes his well-known attack upon 
Shakespeare, the adventures of Roberto, the protagonist of 
the story, tally approximately with known circumstances 
of Greene's life. In the opening of the story, Roberto's 
marriage, his desertion of his wife, his attachment to another 
woman who deserts him when he falls into poverty, ail 
coincide with the facts in his own career. From this we 
may infer that what follows has also a substratum of truth 
regarding a temporary connection of Greene with Alleyn's 
company as playwright, though it is evident that he describes 
Alleyn's theatrical conditions as they were between I589 
and 1592 and after Alleyn had acquired the theatrical 
properties of the old Admiral's company from Richard 
Jones, Robert Browne, and his brother, John Alleyn, in 1589. 
Greene's account of Roscius' own attempts at dramatic 
composition need hot be taken very seriously, though it is 
hot at all improbable that Alleyn, who was very ambitious, 
at some time tentatively essayed dramatic composition or 
revision. It was certainly a very inexperienced playwright, 
yet one who had some idea of the style of phrase that caught 
the ear of the masses, who interpolated the tame and prosy 
lines of the old Taming" of a Slzrew so freely with selections 
from Marlowe's most inflated grandiloquence, and one, also, 
who had access to Marlowe's manuscripts. The plays from 
which these selections were taken were all Burbage pro- 
perties in 1588-89, as was also Tke Taming of a Skrew. It 
was this kind of dramatic stage-carpenter work that left an 
opening for Nashe's strictures in I589 in his 17/[enaphon 
" Address." Several of the later covert references to Alleyn 
as Roscius, by Greene and Nashe, indicate that he had tried 
his hand upon the composition and revision of dramatic 


work, in which he had the assistance of a "theological poet." 
While they undoubtedly refer to Shakespeare as one of the 
"idiot art-masters" they use the plural and include others in 
authority in Burbage's company. 
Greene, representing himself as Roberto after his mistress 
had deserted him, describes himself as sitting under a hedge 
as an outcast and bemoaning his fate. 

"On the other side of the hedge sat one that heard his 
sorrow, who, getting over, came.., and saluted Roberto... 
' Ifyou vouchsafe such simple comfort as my ability will yield, 
assure yourself that I will endeavour to do the best that . . . 
may procure your profit . . . the rather, for that I suppose you 
are a scholar ; and pity it is men of learning should lire in lack.' 
Roberto . . . uttered his present grief, beseeching his advice 
how he might be employed. 'Why, easily,' quoth he,'and 
greatly to your benefit ; for men of my profession get by 
scholars their whole living.' ' What is your profession ?' 
said Roberto. 'Truly, sir,' said he, 'I am a player.' 'A 
player!' quoth Roberto; 'I took you rather for a gentle- 
man of great living; for if by outward habit men should be 
censured, I tell you you would be taken for a substantial 
man.' ' So ara I, where I dwell,' quoth the player, ' reputed 
able at my proper cost to build a windmill. What though 
the world once went hard with me, when I was fain to carry 
my fardel a foot-back ? Te»ora mutanturI knoxv you 
know the meaning of it better than I, but I thus construe 
it--It fs ot]terzvise nozv; for my very share in playing 
apparel will not be sold for two hundred pounds.' 'Truly,' 
said Roberto, 'it is strange that you should so prosper in 
that vain practice, for that it seems to me your voice is 
nothing gracious.' 'Nay, then,' said the player,' I mislike 
your judgement; why, I am as famous for Delpkr3gus and 
The King of Fairies as ever was any of my rime; The 
Twelve Labours of Hercules have I thundered on the stage, 


and played three scenes of the Devil in The Hi/zway to 
Heaven.' 'Have ye so?' said Roberto; 'then I pray you 
pardon me.' ' Nay, more,' quoth the player, ' I can serve to 
make a pretty speech, for I was a country author, passing 
at a moral; for it was I that penned The Moral of 2k[az's 
lVit, The Dialogue of Dives, and for seven years' space was 
absolute interpreter of the puppets. But now my almanac 
is out of date : 

' «The people make no estimation 
Of morals, teaching education- 

Was this not pretty for a rhyme extempore? If ye will ye 
shall have more.' 'Nay, it is enough,' said Roberto; 'but 
how mean ye to use me?' 'Why, sir, in making plays,' 
said the other, ' for which you shall be well paid, if you will 
take the pains.' Roberto, perceiving no remedy, thought it 
best to respect lais present necessity, (and,) to try his wit, 
went with him willingly; who lodged him at the town's 
end in a house of retail . . there by conversing with bad 
company, he grew a zalo Dt pcgus, falling from one vice 
to another... But Robert(», now famoused for an arch- 
playnaking poet, his purse, like the sea, sometime swelled, 
anon, like the saine sea, fell to a low ebb; yet seldom he 
wanted, lais labours were so well esteemed. Marry this rule 
he kept, whatever he fingered beforehand, was the certain 
means to unbind a bargain; and being asked why he so 
slightly dealt with them that did him good, ' It becomes 
me; saith he, 'to be contrary to the world. For commonly 
when vulgar men receive earnest, they do perform. \Vhen 
I am paid anything aforehand, I break my promise.'" 

The player described here is the same person indicated 
by Nashe three years before in his 2k[cnathon " Address." 
Both are represented as being famous for their performance 
of £)el2phUus and Thc I(bz qf the Fairics, but the events 
narrated connecting Greene with Alleyn, and the opulent 


condition of the latter, refer to a more recent stage of 
Greene's and Alleyn's affairs than Nashe's reference. Both 
Nashe's and Greene's descriptions point to a company of 
players that between I589-91 had won a leading place 
in London theatrical affairs; that performed at the Theatre; 
that played Iamlet, T/e Taming" of a A'/)rew, Edward 
III., and Fait Em: the leader of which personally owned 
theatrical properties valued at two hundred pounds, and who 
was regarded by them as an actor of unusual ability. 
Seven years before 1592 this company performed mostly in 
the provinces, carrying their "fardels on their backs." It is 
very apparent then that it is Alleyn's old and new com- 
panies, the Worcester- Admil2al- Strange development, to 
which the allusions refer. 
While the "idiot art-masters" indicated by Nashe and 
Greene as those who chose, purchased, and reconstructed 
the plays used by Strange's company, included others beside 
Shakespeare in their satirical intention, this phase of their 
attacks upon the Theatre and its leading figures became 
centred upon Shakespeare as his importance in the conduct 
of its business increased, and his dramatic ability developed. 
It is now generally agreed by critics that Shakespeare 
cannot bave left Stratford for London belote 1585, and 
probably hot belote 1586-87, and the likelihood bas been 
shown that he then entered the service of James Burbage 
as a hired servant, or servitor, for a terre of years. XVhen 
Henslowe, in I598 , bound Richard Alleyn as a hired 
servant, he did so for a period of two years, which, we 
may judge, was then the customary terre of such service. 
Assuming that Shakespeare bound himself to Burbage in 
1586-87, his term of service would have expired in  588-89. 
Though we possess no evidence that Shakespeare had pro- 


duced any original plays at this time, the strictures of Nashe 
and Greene make it apparent that he had by then attained 
to the position of what might be called dramatic critic for 
the Burbage interests. In this capacity he helped to choose 
the plays purchased by his employers for the use of the 
companies in which they were interested. 
Greene had corne at odds with theatrical managers 
several years belote Shakespeare could have attained to the 
position of reader for the Burbages. Even some of Greene's 
earlier reflections, however, seem to be directed against the 
management of the Shoreditch Theatre. In attacking 
theatrical managers he writes in, what he calls, "mystical 
speeches," and transfigures the persons he attacks under 
fictitious characters and names. In his Planetomachia, 
published in 1585, he caricatures one actor-manager under 
the name of Valdracko, who is an actor in Uenus' TraÆedy, 
one ofthe tales of the book. Valdracko is described as an 
old and experienced actor, "stricken in age, melancholick, 
ruling after the crabbed forwardness of his doting will, 
impartial, for he loved none but himself, politic because 
experienced, familiar with none except for his profit, skillful 
in dissembling, trusting no one, silent, covetous, counting ail 
things honest that were profitable." This characterisation 
cannot possibly have referred to Shakespeare in the year 
1585. When it is noticed, however, that nearly ail of 
Greene's later attacks are directed against the Theatre 
and its fellows, it is probable that the stubborn, wilful, and 
aged James Burbage is also here scurrilously indicated. In 
writing of London and the actors in his "dark speeches," 
Greene refers to London as Rome and to the Shoreditch 
Theatre as the "theatre in Rome." In his Penelole's Web 
he writes: "They which smiled at the theatre in Rome 


might as soon scoff at the rudeness of the scene as give a 
plaudite at the perfection of the acting." While it is Bur- 
bage's Theatre that is here referred to, it is evident that 
his quarrel was not now with the actors--whom both he and 
Nashe praise in their quality--but with the plays, their 
authors, and the theatrical managers who patronised them. 
It is evident that Shakespeare had something to do with 
the acceptance b¥ the Burbages of plays by Marlowe and 
Kyd, and that Greene believed his own lack of patronage by 
the companies playing at the Theatre was due to Shake- 
speare's adverse influence. Knowing Shakespeare to be the 
son of a Stratford butcher, educated at a fframmar school and 
recently a bonded servitor to Burbage, this " Master of Arts in 
Cambridge" questions the literary and dramatic judgment 
of the grammar school youth, and late serving-man, and 
employs his fellow university scholar, Thomas Nashe, to 
ridicule him and his critical pretensions. 
Nashe returned to England in 1589, after a two years' 
absence upon the Continent, and cannot bave acquired at 
first hand the knowledge he shows of dramatic affairs in 
London during the preceding year. It is evident that this 
knowledge was gained from Greene for that purpose. Mr. 
Fleay has demonstrated that Nashe, in his preface to Greene's 
2I[enaphon, alludes satirically to Thomas Kyd as the author 
of Tire Taming of a Shrew, and of the old Ha»tlet. Both 
of these plays were owned by Lord Strange's (now the Lord 
Chamberlain's) company in 1594, when, as I have suggested, 
they had recently taken them over from t'embroke's com- 
pany, which was undoubtedly a Burbage company--using 
some of the Burbage properties and plays while under 
Shakespeare's management in I591-94. Bcing Burbage 
propcrties, these plays were acted by Lord Strange's company 


between I589 and I59I. Besides satirically indicating these 
plays and their author, Nashe goes on to criticise the "idiot 
art-masters" who make choice of such plays for the actors. 
"This affectation of actors and audience," writes Nashe-- 
meaning this suiting of plays to the crude taste of the actors 
and the cruder taste of the publicu" is all traceable to their 
idiot art-masters that intrude themselves as the alchemists of 
eloquence, who (mounted on the stage of arrogance) think 
to outbrave better pens with the swelling bombast of 
bragging blank verse, indeed it may be the ingrafted over- 
flow of some killcow conceit, etc. Among this kind of men 
that repose eternity in the mouth of a player l can but 
engross some deep read sclwol mcn or grammarians, wko bave 
no more learning" in their skull lhan will serve lo la]ce u a 
commodity, nor art in their brains than was nourished in a 
servin man's idlcness, will take upon them to be ironical 
censurers of ail when God and poetry doth know they are 
the simplest of all." 
This attack of Nashe's upon Shakespeare was recognised 
by all of the scholastic clique, and certain of its phrases are 
re-echoed in later attacks upon him by other scholars for 
several years afterwards; in fact, Nashe's diatribe proved to 
be a cue for Shakespeare's future detractors. In the expres- 
sion " killcow," Nashe alludes to Shakespeare's father's trade. 
A few years later1594Chapman refers to Shakespeare as 
"judgements butcher," and later still, in 598, Florio in his 
dedication of the lVorlde of IVordcs, and, in I6oo, Ben 
Jonson in Evey {an out of his Humour, also refer satirically 
to the supposed fact that Shakespeare's father was a butcher. 
In I593 Chapman, in attacking Shakespeare in the early 
Itistriomastia; re-echoes the terre "idiot art-toaster." The 
phrase "ingrafted overflow of a killcow conceit" refers to 


Shakespeare's additions to, or revisions of, plays owned by 
his company that were originally written by such scholars 
as Greene. "Deep read school men or grammarians" is a 
reference to Shakespeare's grammar school education. "No 
more learning than will serve to take up a commodity" refers 
to Shakespeare's business management of Burbage's affairs, 
and "a serving man's idleness" to his recently ended term 
of service with Burbage in that capacity. 
It shall be shown that in later years when Chapman, 
Roydon, Florio, Marston, and Jonson attacked Shakespeare 
in published or acted plays that he invariably answers them 
in kind. We have only inferential evidence that he answered 
Greene's and Nashe's reflections at this time by writing a 
ballad against them. Ralph Sklley, in verses prefixed to 
Greenc's 2Vever Too Laie, published in the following year 
(159o), defends Greene from the attack of a ballad or jig 
maker, whom he calls a clown. 

"The more it works, the quicker is the wit ; 
The more it writes, the better to be 'steemcd. 
By labour ought men's wills and wits be deem'd, 
Though dreaming dunces do inveigh against it. 
But write thou on, though Momus sit and frown ; 
A Carter's jig is fittest for a clown. 
onum quo co»t»tunius eo melius." 

At the end of Greene's Never Too Late in the host's tale 
a ballad maker and player is attacked under the naine of 
Mullidor; he is described as follows: " He is said to be a 
fellow that was of honest parents, but very poor: and his 
person was as if he had been cast in 2Esop's mould ; his 
back like a lute, and his face like Thersites', his eyes broad 
and tawny, his hair harsh and curled like a horse-mane, his 
lips were of the largest size in folio... The only good part 
that he had to grace his visage was his nose, and that was 


conqueror-like, as beaked as an eagle .... Into his great 
head (Nature)put little wit, that he knew rather his sheep 
by the number, for he was never no good arithmetician, 
and yet he was a proper scholar, and well seen in 
When we discount the caricature and spiteful animus of 
this description it closely matches the presentments of 
Shakespeare given by the most authoritative portraits which 
have corne down to us. His parents, as we know, were un- 
doubtedly poor, otherwise he would hOt have been in London 
as a servitor to Burbage. His eyes are invariably shown as 
hazel in colour and widely set apart; his hair heavy, curled, 
and falling to his shoulders; his lips very full, his nose 
large and "beaked," and his brow, or "great head," of 
unusual height and breadth. It is apparent, then, that this 
is a spiteful and distorted, but recognisable, description of 
Shakespeare, who, I infer from many indications in his 
opponents' plays, wore his hair in a peculiar manner, was 
hOt very tall, and was also somewhat thin-legged. The 
Chandos portrait which shows his shoulders, suggests that 
they were slightly sloping and somewhat round rather 
than square. On the whole, a physical type hot calculated 
to inspire fear in a bully. Greene, on the other hand, is 
described by Chettle as a handsome-faced and well-propor- 
tioned man, and we may judge of a rather swash-buckling 
Robert Greene died in September I592. Shortly after- 
wards Henry Chettle published Greene's Groatswart/t af Vit, 
which was his last literary effort, and appended a farewell 
letter of Greene's addressed "To those gentlemen, his 
quandam acquaintances, that spend their time in making 
plays, R. G. wisheth a better exercise and wisdom to prevent 


his extremities." In this epistle, addressing Marlowe, Nashe, 
and Peele, as well as two others at whose identity we can 
only guess, he says: 

" If wofull experience may move you, gentlemen, to 
beware, or unheard-of wretchedness intreat you to take heed, 
I doubt not but you will look backe with sorrow on your 
time past, and endevour with repentance to spend that which 
is to come. Wonder not (for with thee will I first beginne), 
thou famous gracer of tragedians, that Greene, who hath 
said with thee, like the foole in his heart,' There is no God,' 
should now give glorie unto his greatnesse; for penetrating 
is his power, his hand lyes heavy upon me, he hath spoken 
unto me with a voyce of thunder, and I have felt he is a God 
that can punish enemies. Why should thy excellent wit, his 
gift, be so blinded that thou shouldest give no glory to the 
giver? Is it pestilent Machivilian policie that thou hast 
studied ? 0 peevish follie! what are his rules but meere 
confused mockeries, able to extirpate in small time the 
generation of mankinde ? for if sic volo, sic iubeo, holde in 
those that are able to command, and if it be lawfull fas et 
nefas, to doo any thing that is beneficiall, onely tyrants should 
possesse the earth, and they, striving to exceed in tiranny, 
should each to other be a slaughterman, till, the mightyest 
outliving ail, one stroke were left for Death, that in one age 
mans life should end .... With thee I joyne young Juvenall, 
that byting satyrist, that lastly with mee together writ a 
comedie. Sweet boy, might I advise thee, be advised, and 
get not many enemies by bitter words; inveigh against 
vaine men, for thou canst doo it, no man better, no man so 
well; thou hast a libertie to reproove ail and name none; 
for one being spoken to, all are offended--none being blamed, 
no man is injured. Stop shallow water still running, it will 
rage; tread on a worme, and it will turne; then blame not 
schollers who are vexed with sharpe and bitter lines, if they 
reproove thy too much libert¥ of reproofe. 


"And thou no lesse deserving then the other two, in 
some things tarer, in nothing inferiour, driven, as myselfe, 
to extreame shifts, a little have I to say to thee; and, were 
it not an idolatrous oath, I would sweare by sweet S. George, 
thou art unworthy better hap, sith thou dependest on so 
mean a stay. Base-minded men all three of you, if by 
my misery yee bee not warned; for unto none of you, like 
me, sought those burs to cleave; those puppits, I meane, 
that speake from our mouths, those anticks garnisht in out 
colours. Is it hot strange that I to whom they have been 
beholding, is it not like that you to whom they all have 
been beholding, shall, were yee in that case that I am now, 
be both of them at once forsaken? Yes, trust them not; 
for there is an upstart crow beautified with our feathers, 
that, with his Tygres lieart wrajt in a players yde, supposes 
hce is as well able to bombast out a blanke-verse as the 
best of you; and, beeing an absolute Johannes-fac-totum, 
is in his owne conceit the onely Shake-scene in a countrey. 
Oh, that I might intreat your rare wittes to bee imployed 
in more profitable courses, and let these apes imitate your 
past excellence, and never more acquaynte them with your 
admyred inventions! I knowe the best husband of you 
all will never proove an usurer, and the kindest of them 
all will never proove a kinde nurse; yet, whilst you may, 
seeke you better maisters; for it is pitty men of such rare 
wits should bee subject to the pleasures of such rude 
" In this I might insert two more 1 that both have writte 

I ,, The two more" here indicated by Greene are, I believe, Lodge and 
Matthew Roydon, both of whom are mentioned by Nashe in his address "To 
the Gentlemen of the two Universities" prefixed to Greene's )Plena.phon. I 
have elsewhere shown that Roydon was a prolific ballad writer who invariably 
wrote anonymously, or under pen names, and have ruade evident his authorship 
of IVillobie his .4visa, as vell as its anti-Shakespearean intention. Roydon 
also wrote plays as well as ballads, and was possibly one of the '« theological 
poets" referred to by Greene in the introduction to his tZarewell to tzolly, who, 
he intimates, were averse "for their calling and gravity" to have their names 


against these buckram gentlemen; but let their owne worke 
serve to witnesse against their owne wickednesse, if they 
persever to maintaine any more such peasants. For other 
new comers, I leave them to the mercie of those painted 
monsters, who, I doubt not, will drive the best-minded to 
despise them; for the rest, it skills not though they make 
a jeast at them .... " 

It is now accepted by critics that these allusions of 
Greene's were directed against Shakespeare, and that the 
line "Tygres heart wrapt in a players hyde" refers to 
Shakespeare's revision of The True Tragedy of Richard, 
JDuke of York, a play in the original composition of which 
Greene evidently had some hand. It has hot before 
bcen suggested, however, that this play was performed 
by the Earl of Pembroke's company, under Shakespeare's 
management, in I592. It was evidently the publi- 
city given Marlowe's and Shakespeare's revision by the 
stage revival of the play by Pembroke's company at 
this rime that called forth Greene's attack. This brings 
us to the end of the year 1592 in outlining chronologi- 
cally the evidences of the antagonism of the scholars to 
In June 1593 George Peele shows animus against 
Shakespeare by echoing Greene's phrases in the introduction 
to The tfonour of the Garter. In these verses, in compli- 
menting several noblemen and "gentlemen poets," such as 
appear as the authors of ballads or plays, and so secured "some other batillus 
to set their names to their verses." Roydon's affected anonymity is referred to 
by several other contemporary writers. Robert Arnim writes of him as "a 
light that shines hot in the world as it is wished, but yet the worth of his 
lustre is known." Roydon was a curate of the Established Church. Shake- 
speare's lack of respect for Church of England curates, which is several times 
exhibited in his plays, was, no doubt, due in some degree to his dislike of 


Sidney, Spenser, Harrington, Fraunce, Campion, and others, 
he refers also to 
"ordinary grooms, 
With trivial humours to pastime the worid, 
That favour Pan and Phoebus both alike," 

This appears to be a reflection of Greene'.s "rude groomes 
of the previous September and a reference to Shakespeare's 
theatrical work and his Venus and A donis, which, though 
only recently published, had no doubt been read in MS. 
form for some rime before. 
I shall now proceed to show that at the end of 1593, 
after Lord Pembroke's company had returned from their 
unprofitable provincial tour when they were compelled to 
"pawn their apparel for their charges," George Chapman 
wrote a play satirising Shakespeare and the disastrous 
fortunes of this company. This play was revised by Marston 
and Chapman in 1599, under the title of Iistriomastix, or 
The Player Whipt, as a counter-attack upon Shakespeare in 
order to revenge the satire which he, in conjunction with 
Dekker and Chettle, directed against Chapman and Marston 
in Troilus and Cressida, and in a play reconstructed from 
Troilus and Cressida by Dekker and Chettle, called 
Affamemnon, in 1598-99. This latter phase of the matter 
shall be dealt with when I corne to a consideration of the 
literary warfare of the later period. 
It has never before been suggested that George Chapman 
had any hand in the composition of Histriomastix, though 
Mr. Richard Simpson shows clearly that it was an old 
play roughly revised in the form in which it was acted in 
1599. Mr. Simpson suggests that it might have been 
written by Peele, in its original form, owing to certain verbal 
resemblances between portions of it and Peele's dedication 


to his Honour of the Garter. He dates its original com- 
position in about I59O, but in doing so had evidently 
forgotten that he had already written: "The early 
Chrisoganus (of this play) seems to be of the time when 
the Earl of Northumberland, Raleigh, and Harriot strove 
to set up an Academy in London, and the spirit of the 
play, and even its expressions, were quite in unison with 
Peele's dedication of his Honour of t/te Garter, I593." AI1 
literary and historical references to the academical efforts 
of the Earl of Northumberland, Harriot, and others point 
to the years I591-93 as the time in which this attempt to 
establish an Academy was ruade. Chapman in his dedication 
of The Skadow of lVigltt to Roydon, in 1594, refers to the 
movement as then of comparatively recent date. "But I 
stay this spleen when I remember, my good Matthew, 
how joyfully oftentimes you reported unto me that most 
ingenious Derby, deep-searching Northumberland, and skill- 
embracîng Earl of Hunsdon had most profitably entertained 
learning in themselves to the vital warmth of freezing 
Sc,ence, etc. Peele's allusions to the movement in his 
dedication to the IZonour of the Garter, which is dated 
26th June I593, are as follows : 
" Renowned Lord, Northumberland's fait flower, 
The Muses' love, patron and favourite» 
That artisans and seholars dost embraee. 
And elothest Mathesis in rieh ornaments, 
That admirable mathematie skill, 
Familiar with the stars and Zodiac, 
To whom the heaven lies open as her book; 
By whose directions undeeeivable, 
Leaving out Schoolmen's vulgar trodden paths» 
And following the aneient reverent steps 
Of Trismegistus and Pythagoras, 
Through uneouth ways and unaeeessible, 
Doth pass into the pleasant spaeious fieids 
Of divine science and philosophy," etc. 


Shakespeare evidently reflects knowledge of this academical 
attempt and pokes fun at the scholars in his reference to 
"a little academie" in Love's LabouFs Lost: 

" Navarre shall be the wonder of the world 
Out Court shall be a little academie 
Still and contemplative in living art." 

This play was originally written late in I59I , but was 
drastically revised late in 1594, or early in 595, after 
Shakespeare had read Chapman's iymns lo lhe çhadow 
fATiffht; and again, in 1598. The reference to the Academy 
was evidently introduced at the rime of its first revision. 
Mr. Simpson recognises the fact that most of the 
Chrisoganus passages, especially those in the earlier portions 
of ]]islriomaslix', pertain to the play in its original form. 
If the reader will take the trouble to read Chapman's ij,mns 
to te Shadow of Niffh! (I594), his poem to Thomas 
Harriot, and his Tears of Peace, and compare their mental 
attitude and verbal characteristics with the "Chrisoganus" 
and "Peace " passages of iislriomastia:, Chapman's author- 
ship of the latter will become apparent. The following 
parallels from four of Chapman's poems are convincing, and 
they can be extended indefinitely : 
"Have always borne themselves in Godlike State 
With lofty foreheade higher than the stars." 
De Guiana, Carmen Epicum 
«Whose forehead knocks against the roof of stars." 
« Consume whole groves and standing fields of corn 
In thy wild rage and make the proud earth groan." 
The Shadow of Nighl-- 
"Convert the violent courses of thy floods, 
Remove whole fields of corn and highest woods." 


"Whose glory which thy solid virtues won 
Shall honour Europe while there shines a sun." 
Poe»t fo Harriot-- 
" When thy true wisdom by thy learning won 
Shall honour learning while there shines a sun." 
Chapman in several instances in this play echoes Greene's 
slurs against Shakespeare and, in the saine manner as Peele 
in the Honour of t/te Garter, repeats the actual phrases and 
epithets used by Greene and Nashe. 
"I seorn a seoffing fool abont my throne-- 
An artless idiot (that llke ,Esop's daw 
Plumes fairer feathered birds)." 
These lines evince Chapman's knowledge of Nashe's 
phrase "idiot art-toaster," and of Greene's "upstart crow 
beautified with our feathers," and clearly pertain to the play 
in its earlier form (t593) when Greene's Groatsworth of IVit 
(published late in t 592) was still a new publication. In fact, 
it is not improbable that Nashe collaborated with Chapman 
in the early form of this play. 
Again when Chapman writes the following lines: 
"0 age, when every Scriveners boy shall dippe 
Profaning quills into Thessalies spring ; 
When every artist prentice that bath read 
The pleasant pantry of conceipts shall date 
To write as confident as Hercules ; 
When every ballad-monger boldly writes," etc. 
It is apparent that he again echoes Nashe's and Greene's 
attacks upon Shakespeare and Thomas Kyd, all of which, 
however, he appears to have thought (as have later critics) 
were directed against Shakespeare. 


The lines quoted above evidently reflect Chapman's 
knowledge of Nashe's preface to Greene's .Mena;Nmn in the 
expressions "Scriveners boy," "artist prentice," and "ballad- 
monger," while the words 
"shall dippe 
Profaning quills into Thessalies spring" 
refer to Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis, and the lines from 
Ovid with which he heads that poem. 
In I593 when, as I have indicated, tIistriomastix in its 
early form was written, Shakespeare had published Venus 
and Adonis and dedicated it to the Earl of Southampton. 
In the composition of this poem Shakespeare undoubtedly 
worked from Arthur Golding's translation of Ovid's 
3Ietamohoses. He prefixed to the poem two lines from 
Ovid's fifteenth Elegy" 
"Vilia miretur vulgus; mihi flavus Apollo 
Pocula Castalia plena ministret aqua "; 
which are rendered in Marlowe's translation : 

"Let base conceited wits admire vile things, 
Fair Phoebus lead me to the Muses springs." 

In The Shadozv of Ni#ht, published in the following 
year, Chapman again resents the fact that one of Shake- 
speare's "small Latin and less Greek" should invade the 
classical preserves of the scholars for his poetical and 
dramatic subjects : . 

"Then you that exercise the virgin court 
Of peaceful Thespia, my muse consort, 
Making her drunken with Gorgonean dews, 
And therewith ail your ecstasies infuse, 
That she may reach the topless starry brows 
Of steep Olympus, crown'd with freshest boughs 
Of Daphnean laurel, and the praises sing 
Of mighty Cynthia: truly figuring 


(As she is Hecate) her sovereign kind, 
And in her force, the forces of the mind: 
An argument to ravish and refine 
An earthly soul and make it more devine. 
Sing then with ail, her palace brightness bright, 
The dazzle-sun perfection of her light ; 
Circling her face with glories, sing the walks, 
Where in her heavenly magic mood she stalks, 
Her arbours, thickets, and her wondrous game, 
(A huntress being never match'd in faine,) 
tresume hot then ye flesh-confounded so«ls, 
That cannot bear the full Castalian bowls, 
Which sever mounting spirits from the senses, 
To look into rais dee fount for thy îretenses." 
In these lines, besides indicating Shakespeare's recent 
Ovidian excursion in Venus and Adonis by his reference to 
"Castalian bowls," Chapman shows knowledge of Shake- 
speare's intention, in the composition of Love's Labour's Lost, 
of exhibiting Queen Elizabeth as a huntress. Chapman's 
Cynthia of The Shadow of NiffItt is plainly a rhapsodised 
idealisation of the Ç!ueen. Later on I shall elaborate the 
fact that Lovds Labour's Lost was written late in $9I, or 
early in I59z, as a reflection of the Queen's progress to 
Cowdray House, the home of the Earl of Southampton's 
maternal grandfather, Viscount Montague, and that the 
shooting of deer by the Princess and her ladies fancifully 
records phases of the entertainments arranged for the Queen 
during her visit. 
Assuming, then, from the foregoing evidenceand inferences 
that Chapman composed the early ttistriomastiw in 593, 
let us examine the play further in order to trace its fuller 
application to Shakespeare and his affairs in that year. 
Though Histriomastiw was revised as an attack upon 
Shakespeare in $99 by Chapman and Marston, who had 
commenced to collaborate in dramatic work in the previous 
year, its original plot and action remain practically unaltered, 


In its rcvision its early anti-Shakespearean intention was 
merely amplified and brought up to date by a few topical 
allusions, fitting circumstances in the lires of the persons 
caricatured, pertaining to the later period. The substitution 
of Troilus and Cressida for The Prodigal Chi/d, as the play 
within the play presented by Sir Oliver Owlet's company, 
is also due to the period of revision. .All of the passages 
of the play which are suggestive of the period of revision 
are palpably in the style of John Marston. 
Among the persons of the early play is Chrisoganus, a 
scholar and mathematician, who has set up an academy 
to expound the seven liberal Sciences: Grammar, Logic, 
Rhetoric, Arithmetic, Geometry, Music, and Astronomy, all 
of which are introduced as persons in the first act. Chriso- 
ganus was undoubtedly intended for Chapman's friend 
Thomas Harrîot, the mathematician and astronomer, who 
was so prominent in the academical movement of 592-93. 
The name Chrisoganus is evidently a reflection of Harriot's 
Ephemeris Chrisometra, a MS. copy of which is preserved in 
Zion College. Chapman's poem to Harriot, prefixed to his 
Achilles Shield (I599), expresses many of the same ideas 
voiced in Histriomastix and in much the same language, and 
indicates Chapman's collaboration with Marston in the 
revision of the play in that year. 
In the early Histriomastix Chapman represents himself in 
the character of Peace. When the utterances of Peace are 
compared with certain of Chapman's poems, such as his 
Euthymia Raptus, or The Tears of Peace (I6O9), his poem to 
Harriot (I598), The Shadow of Night (I594), and Oviars 
Banquet of Sense (I595), in all of which he breaks away 
from his subject-matter at intervals to extol his own virtues 
and bewail his povert¥ and his neglect by patrons, it becomes 


evident that he transfigures himself in HistriomastLr as Peace ; 
which character acts as a chorus to, or running commentary 
on, the action of the play. 
The whole spirit and purpose of this play is reproduced 
in The Tears of Peace, which is a dialogue between Peace 
and an interlocutor, who discuss at great length exactly 
the same ideas and subjects, dramatically treated, in Histrio- 
**zasli.'t; Le. the neglect of learning and the learned, and 
"the pursuit of wealth, glory, greatness, pleasure, and fashion" 
by "plebian and lord alike," as well as the unaccountable 
success of an ignorant playwright who writes plays on any 
subject that cornes into lais head" 
"And how they trot out in their lines the ring 
With idly iterating oft one thing, 
A new fought combat, an affair at sea, 
A marriage or progress or a plea. 
No news but fits them as if made for them, 
Though it be forged but of a woman's dream." 
The plays of no other dramatist of that period match the 
description of the subjects of the plays given here. The 
"progress," mentioned by Chapman, is undoubtedly a refer- 
• :: A ° ' 
ence to Love's Labour's Lost, marrlage, [idsummer 
IVight's 1)rean ; "a plea," The [erchant of UeMce ; " A new 
fought combat," Henry a reflection of the military 
services of Southampton and Essex in Ireland in I599; 
"an affair at sea," Twelfth Nigkt, The Merchant of Uenice, 
In the second scene of Histriomastix, to Peace, the Arts, 
and Chrisoganus, come Mavortius and a group of his friends 
representing the nobility whom the academicians endeavour 
to win to their attendance and support• Mavortius and his 
followers refuse to cultivate Chrisoganus and the Arts, pre- 
ferring a life of dalliance and pleasure, and to patronise 


plays and players instead. Other characters are introduced 
representing the Law, the Army, and Merchandise, who 
also neglect the Arts and lire for pastime and sport. 
The company of players patronised by Mavortius performs 
under the licence of Sir Oliver Owlet, and under the leader- 
ship of Posthaste, an erstwhile ballad maker, who writes 
plays for the company and who threatens to return to ballad 
making when playing proves unprofitable. 
One of Mavortius' followers, Landulpho, an Italian lord, 
criticises the play presented by Posthaste and his fellows, 
and lauds the Italian drama. 
A period of peace and prospcrity, during which Chriso- 
ganus and the Arts are neglected by the extravagant and 
pleasure-seeking lords and populace, is followed by war with 
an aftermath of poverty when Sir Oliver Owlet's company of 
players is disrupted, and the actors are compelled to "pawn 
their apparel for their charges." 


Master Constable, ho ! these players will not pay thek shot. 
Faith, sir, war hath so pinch'd us we must pawn. 
Alas, poor players ! Hostess, what comes it to ? 
The Sharers dinners sixpence a piece. The hkelings--pence. 
What, sixpence an egg, and two and two an egg ? 
Faith, famine affords no more. 
FelIows, bring out the hamper. Chose somewhat out o'th stock. 

Enter the tglayers. 
What will you have this cloak to pawn ? What think you its worth ? 
HOST. Some fower groats. 
ONIN. The pox is in this age ; here's a brave world fellows ! 
POST. ¥ou may see what it is to laugh at the audience. 
HOST. Well, it shall serve for a pawn. 
The further development of this narrative will make it 
evident beyond any reasonable doubt that Posthaste, the 
poet-actor, is intended to caricature Shakespeare, and Sir 


Oliver Owlet's company and its misfortunes to reflect the 
Earl of Pembroke's company in similar circumstances in 
1593 ; that Mavortius is the young Earl of Southampton, to 
whom Shakespeare dedicated Venus and Adonis in 593, 
and Lucrece in the year following; that Landulpho, the 
Italian lord, represents John Florio, who, in 1591 , in his 
Secoud Fruites, criticised English historical drama and praised 
ltalian plays, and who, at about the same time as teacher of 
languages entered into the pay and patronage of the Earl of 
Southampton, a connection which his odd and interesting 
personality enabled him to hold thereafterwards for several 
years. The part which Landulpho takes in the play was 
somewhat developed by Marston in  599, at which time it 
shall later on be shown that the relations between Florio 
and Shakespeare had reached a heated stage. The play of 
Tke Prodigal Ckild, which was the play within the play acted 
by Posthaste and his fellows in the earlier form of Histrio- 
mastix, did not, in my opinion, represent the English original 
of the translated German play of The Prodigal Son which 
Mr. Simpson presents as the possible original, but was meant 
to indicate Shakespeare's Love's Labour's Won, which was 
written late in the preceding year as a reflection of South- 
ampton's intimacy with Florio, and the beginning of his affair 
with Mistress Davenant, x the Oxford tavern keeper's wife. 
The expression The Prodigal Child differs from that of The 
Prodigal Son in meaning, in that the word "Child" at that 
period meant a young nobleman. There is nothing whatever 

 Since the publication of A/Iistress Davenant, the Dark Lady of Shakesîeare's 
Sonnets, in I913, I bave learned that John Davenant was married twice. 
Roydon's IVillobie his Avisa refers to his first wife, who was Anne Birde, 
daughter of Mayor William Birde of Bristol, whom he married belote July 
1592. I have also round that his second wife was Jane Shepherd of Durham. 
This matter will be fully elucidated in a forthcoming publication. 


suggestive of Shakespeare's work in the translatcd Gcrman 
play, and it was merely the similarity of title that led Mr. 
Simpson to propose it as the play indicated. The play 
satirised by Chapman under the title of Tke Prodigal Chi[a 
was undoubtedly written by Shakespeare, and it is no more 
likely that Chapman would use the actual naine of the play 
at which he points than that he would use the actual names 
of the various persons or of the company of players whose 
actions and work he caricatures. 
In I594 George Chapman published Hymns to the Shadow 
of Night, and in 1595 his Ovid's Banquet of So¢se and _// 
Coronet for his Mistress Philosothy, dedicating both publica- 
tions to his friend Matthew Roydon. The dedication of 
these poems to Roydon was an afterthought ; they were not 
primarily written with Roydon in mind. 1 It has been made 
evident that Chapman had first submitted these poems to 
the Erl of Southampton in an endeavour to win his patron- 
age, and failing to do so dedicated them to Roydon and attacked 
Shakespeare in the dedications, where he refers to him in the 
capacity of reader to the Earl of Southampton, and imputes 
to his adverse influence his ill-success in his attempt. In 
the dcdication to The Shadow of ZVight he writes" 

" How then may a man stay his marvailing to see passion- 
driven men reading but to curtail a tedious hour and altogether 
hidebound with affection to great men's fancies take upon 
them as killing censures as if they were judgements butchers 
or as if the lire of truth lay tottering in their verdicts. 
"Now what supererogation in wit this is to think skill so 
mightily pierced with their loves that she should prostitutely 
shew them her secrets when she will scarcely be looked upon 
by others but with invocation, fasting, watching; yea hOt 

 Shakesieare and lhe Rival Poet, I9O2. 


without having drops of their souls like an heavenly familiar. 
Why then should our Intonsi Catones with their profit ravished 
gravity esteem her true favours such questionless vanities as 
with what part soever thereof they seem to be something 
delighted they queamishly commend it for a pretty toy. 
Good Lord how serious and eternal are their idolatrous platts 
for riches." 

The expression "passion-driven," as applied by Chapman 
to Shakespeare in I594, especially in a dedication written to 
Matthew Roydon,--who in this saine year published lFillobic 
]ds ,zlvisa,--plainly refers to Shakespeare's relations at that 
rime with Mistress Davenant, who was the original for the 
figure now known as the Dark Lady of the Sonnets, as well 
as for the Avisa of 'llobie his ,zlvisa. The words "reading 
but to curtail a tedious hour and altogether hidcbound with 
affection to great men's fancies," refer to Shakespeare in the 
capacity of reader to the Earl of Southampton. In an attack 
which John Florio makes upon Shakespeare in I598, he also 
makes a similar reference to him in this capacity. The 
expression "judgements butcher," like Nashe's "killcow," 
indicates Shakespeare's father's trade of butcher. 
It was the obvious parallel between Chapman's, "whcn 
she will scarcely be looked upon by others but with invocation, 
fasting, watching; yea not without having drops of their 
souls like an heavenly familiar," and Shakespcare's allusion, 
in Sonnet 86, to a poet who attempted to supplant him in 
Southampton's favour-- 

" He nor that affable familiar ghost 
Which nightly gulls him with intelligence, 
As victors of my silence cannot boast ; 
I was hot sick of any fear from thence: 
But when your countenance filled up his line, 
Then lack'd I matter ; that enfeebled mine "-- 


that led Professor Minto to suggest Chapman as the rival 
poet of the Sonnets. In a former essay I have demonstrated 
the truth of Professor Minto's suggestion. 
Chapman's Inœeonsi Caœeones, or " Unshorn Catos," refers to 
the peculiar manner in which Shakespeare wore his hair, 
which Greene describes as "harsh and curled like a horse- 
mane," and is also a reference to his provincial breeding and, 
presumed, lack of culture. 
There are a number of indications in the few facts we 
possess of Shakespeare's life in 1594, and also in his own 
and contemporary publications, to warrant the assumption 
that the Earl of Southampton bestowed some unusual 
evidence of lais bounty upon him in this year. If ever there 
was a period in lais London career in which Shakespeare 
needed financial assistance more than at other rimes it was 
in this year. Lord Strange's company had now been acting 
under Henslowe's management for two years. The financial 
condition of both Burbage and Shakespeare must at this 
time have been at a low ebb. The plague had prevented 
Pembroke's company playing in London for nearly a year, 
and we have seen that their attempts to play in the provinces 
had resulted in failure and loss. In about the middle of 
1594, however, Lord Strange's players (now the Lord 
Chamberlain's men) return to Burbage and the Theatre, when 
Shakespeare becomes hot only a member of the company, 
but, from the fact that his naine is mentioned with that 
of Kempe and Richard Burbage in the Court records 
of the payment for performances in December 1594, it 
is evident that he was then also a leading sharer in the 
In parting from Henslowe and reorganising under 
Burbage in 1594 it is apparent that the reorganisers of the 


Lord Chamberlain's men would need considerable capital 
if we may judge the financial affairs of this company by 
those of the Lord Admiral's company (subsequently Lord 
Nottingham's men)while under Henslowe's management. 
On I3th October I599 Henslowe records in his Diary: 
" Received with the company of my Lord of Nottingham's 
men to this place, beinge the 3th of October 599, and 
it doth appeare that I have received of the debte which 
they owe unto me three hundred fifty and eight pounds." 
This was only a partial payment of this company's 
debt, which evidently was considerably in excess of this 
amount. It is unlikely, then, that Lord Strange's company 
was free of debt to him at the end of their terre under his 
Shakespeare's earliest biographer, Nicholas Rowe, records, 
on the authority of Sir William Davenant, "that my Lord 
Southampton at one rime gave him a thousand pounds to 
enable him to go through with a purchase which he heard 
he had a mind to." Whatever truth there may be as to 
the amount of money here mentioned, it is apparent that 
Southampton evidenced his bounty to Shakespeare in I594 
in some substantial manner, which quickly became noised 
abroad among the poets and writers who sought patronage. 
Several of these poets in approaching Southampton refer 
inferentially to his munificence to Shakespeare. In I594 
Barnabe Barnes writes: 

« Vouchsafe right virtuous Lord with gracious eyes 
Those heavenly lamiks which give the muses light 
To view rny muse with your judicial sight," etc, 

The words italicised evidently refer to Southampton's 
acceptance of Venus and tdonis in the preceding year. 


Later in I594, Thomas Nashe dedicated Tire Lire of Jack 
Vilto» to Southampton, and in a dedicatory Sonnet to a 
poem preserved in the Rawlinson MS. in the Bodleian 
Library, entitled T/te Ckoice of Va[entines, Nashe apologises 
for the salacious nature of the poem, and in an appended 
Sonnet cvidently refers to Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis 
in the line italicised below: 

" Thus hath my pen presumed to please my friend, 
Oh might'st thou likewise please Apollo's eye ; 
No, honor brooks no such impietie, 
Yel O;ids lVanton .Olme did hot offend, 
tIe is the fountain whence my streams do flow, 
Forgive me if I speak as I were taught." 

In 595 Gervase Markham, in a Sonnet prefixed to his 
pocm on Richard Grenville's fight in the _K'eveJzg'e, addresses 
Southampton as : 

" Thou glorious laurel of the Muses' hill, 
IVhose eyes doth crown lhe mosl rictorious pcn, 
Bright lamp of virtue, in whose sacred skill 
Lives all the bliss of ear-enchanting men." 

The line italicised not only refers to Shakespeare but 
gives evidence also of the assured standing among poets 
which he had now attained in unbiased judgments. 
In addition to these evidences of Southampton's bounty 
to Shakespeare at this time, we bave the poet's own 
acknowledgment of the recent receipt of a valuable gift in 
the Lucrece dedication : " The warrant I bave of flore" honour- 
able disiOosition, hot the worth of my untutored lines, makes it 
assured of acceiOtance." 
In his I-fymns to the Shadow of NiItt (x594) and its 
dedication, Chapman complains of his lack of patronage 
and refers to what he designates as Shakespeare's "idol- 


atrous platts for riches." 1 In the body of the poem he 
writes • 
"Wealth fawns on fools; virtues are ment for vices, 
Wisdom conforms herself to ail earth's guises, 
Good girls are often given to men past good 
And noblesse stoops sometlmes beneath his blood." 
In view of the general knowledge of Southampton's bounty 
to Shakespeare at this rime, and of the anti-Shakespearean 
intention which I have demonstrated in Chapman's poem, it 
is apparent that these lines refer to the nobleman's gift as 
well as to the intimaey between the peer and the player at 
this period. 
In this same year (I594) the seholars devised a plan to 
disrupt the intimacy between Shakespeare and Southampton 
by producing and publishing a scandalous poem satirising 
their relations, entitled l/Villobie kis A visa, or the truc picture 
of a modest maid and a chaste and constant wife. In this poem 
Henry Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton, is represented as 
"Henry Willobie a young man and a scholar of very good 
hope," while Shakespeare is indicated as "W. S.," an "old 
actor." " W. S." is depieted as aiding and abetting Henry 
Willobie in a love affair with Avisa, the wife of an Oxford 
tavern keeper who conducts a tavern described as follows" 
"See yonder house where hangs the badge 
Of England's saint when captains cry 
Victorious land to conquering rage." 
In this poem Henry Willobie is alleged to have fallen in 
love with Avisa at first sight, and to have confided in his 
friend "W. S.," "who not long before had tryed the courtesy 
of the like passion and was now newly recovered of the like 
infection." Willobie his Avisa in some measure reproduces 
but at the saine rime grossly distorts actual facts in the lires 
i A probable allusiin ti his Lu«re«e dedication. 


of Shakespeare and Southampton which are dimly adum- 
brated in Sonnets written by Shakespeare to Southampton 
and to the Dark Lady at this rime. I bave elsewhere 
demonstrated Matthew Roydon's authorship as well as the 
anti-Shakespearean intention of this poem. 
In 1595 George Chapman published his Ovid's 17anquet 
of Sense and his A Cronet for his klistress Philosopby, 
in both of which poems, as well as in the dedications, 
he again indicates and attacks Shakespeare. Shakespeare's 
cognizance of Chapman's intention, as well as the manner 
in which he answered him, have been examined in detail 
in a previous essay which is now generally accepted by 
authoritative critics as definitely establishing the fact of 
Chapman's ingrained hostility to Shakespeare as well as his 
identity as the rival poet of the Sonnets. 1 
Thus we find that, beginning with the reflections of 
Nashe and Greene in 1589, Shakespeare was defamed and 
abused by some one or more of this coterie of jealous 
scholars in every year down to 1595, and that the rancour 
of his detractors intensifies with the growth of his social 
and literary prestige. 
The one thing of ail others that served most to feed and 
perpetuate the envy of the scholars against Shakespeare was 
the friendship and patronage accorded him by the Earl of 
Past biographers and critics usually date the beginning 
of the acquaintance between Shakespeare and Southampton 
in 1593, when Venus and Adonis was published. In a later 
chapter I shall advance new evidence to show that their 
acquaintance had its inception nearly two years before that 
1 Shakespeare and the Rival Poet, John Lane, London, x9o 3. 




T HE three parts of Hnry VL and their originals 
are of interest to Shakespearean students as 
marking the beginning of a phase of English 
historical drama, afterwards developed by Shakespeare, 
Kyd, Marlowe, and others. They owed their origin to the 
demand of the theatres for material with which to cater to 
the ebullient national spirit aroused by the long-threatened 
danger of a Spanish invasion, and its happy issue in the 
destruction of the great Armada, in 1588. They were 
originally produced between I589 and I59I, and evidently 
for the Queen's players. The theatrical managers having 
found them a profitable investment, encouraged the con- 
tinued production of historical plays. Peele, who is usually 
supposed to have been the author of The First 19art of Hnry 
VI., soon affer wrote a play upon the reign of Edward L ; 
Marlowe appropriating EdwardlII. and later on EdwardlZ ; 
and Shakespeare Kinff john in 159I and Ric]zard 2r2r. in 
Shakespeare, before composing Richard II.,--in the 
composition of which he was evidently guided by the 


previous production of Madowe's Edward II.,--tried his 
"prentice hand" on Kinff John. Both this play and the 
older play of The Troublesome Raig'ne of Kin John (upon 
which it is based, and which, in fact, it practically recasts) 
owe their origin to the same influences as the other historical 
plays mentioned. The Troublesoze Raiffne of King John 
was composed for the Queen's company at, or near to, the 
date of the Spanish Armada, and at a period when religious 
animosities were acute. Its anti-Catholic spirit is very 
aggressive. We have good evidence, in the manner in which 
Shakespeare, on recasting the old play, toned down or 
eliminated this spirit, that whatever dogmatic latitude he 
allowed himself in religion, his social and religious sympathies 
at this period were Catholic rather than Protestant. He 
was, withal, in common with a large proportion, and prob- 
ably a majority, of his compatriots at that time, an English, 
as distinguished from a Roman, Catholic, and like them, 
though he outwardly acquiesced in the established religion, 
tacitly favoured the old Church in spiritual matters, while 
resenting its political activities. 
Socially and politically, Shakespeare was essentially 
conservative. He looked naturally unto the rock whence 
he was hewn and to the hole of the pit whence he was 
digged. With a deep and abiding pride of race, linking 
him spiritually with the historic past of his people, he was 
inclined to look askance at the subverting spirit of Puritan- 
ism, which was now beginning to give Merrie England 
food for serious thought. His temperamental bias against 
Puritanism was accentuated by the openly avowed hostili W 
of the Puritans to his chosen profession. Though born 
of the people, Shakespeare's social ideals were strongly 
aristocratic, and, while possessing, in an unusual degree 


that unerring knowledge of human nature in ail classes and 
conditions of men, and broad tolerance of human foibles 
and weaknesses, attainable only by spiritual sympathy, in 
the political wisdom of democracy as it could then be 
conceived he had little confidence. 
We have good evidence that Shakespeare's father was 
a Catholic, and it is more than likely that Shakespeare's 
sympathies were Catholic. His most intimate affiliations 
were Catholic. Southampton's family, the Wriothesleys, 
and his mother's family, the Browns, were adherents of the 
old faith, and though Southampton, in later life, turned to 
Protestantism he was Catholic during the early years of his 
intimacy with Shakespeare. For the clergy of the Established 
Church Shakespeare had little respect; he probably regarded 
the majority of them as trimmers and time-servers. He 
always makes his curates ridiculous; this, however, was 
probably due to his hostility to Roydon, whom he 
caricatures. On the other hand, his priests and friars, while 
erring and human, are always dignified and reverend figures. 
There is, however, no indecision in his attitude towards 
Rome's political pretensions. The most uncompromising 
Protestant of the time sounds no more defiant national note 
than he. 
In I(ing Jolm we have an ingenuous revelation of 
Shakespeare's outlook on lire while he was still comparatively 
young, and within a few years of his advent in London. 
He was yet unacquainted with the Earl of Southampton at 
the date of its composition, early in 1591. 
In the character of Falconbridge, with which one 
instinctively feels its creator's sympathy, I am convinced 
that Shakespeare portrayed the personality of Sir John 
Perrot, an illegitimate son of Henry viii., and half-brother 


to Queen Elizabeth. The immense physical proportions of 
both Perrot and Falconbridge; their characteristic and 
temperamental resemblances; their common illegitimate 
birth; the fact that both were trusted generals and relatives 
of their sovereigns ; their similar bluff and masterful manner ; 
their freedom of speech ; and the suggestîve unison between 
important incidents in their lires, all exhibit a resemblance 
much too remarkable for mere coincidence. 
In the development of certain of Shakespeare's characters 
we instinctively feel his sympathy with, or antipathy for, the 
type he represents. Like Thackeray in the case of lTarry 
Lyn(lon, he paints in Falstaff a rascal so interesting that he 
leads us almost to condone his rascality ; yet who can doubt 
in either instance the author's inherent antipathy to the 
basic character he portrays. On the other hand, in depict- 
ing Biron, Antonio, and Jacques, we feel a sympathetic 
touch. For no one of his numerous characters is his 
admiration so apparent and unreserved as for that of Falcon- 
bridge. With other characters, such as Biron, Antonio, 
Jacques, Hamlet, and Prospero in their successive stages, 
we apprehend a closer mental likeness to, and spiritual 
synthesis of, their creator; here, however, is no creature of 
the brain, but a flesh-and-blood man of action, taken bodily 
from life. An early date for the original composition of 
B2ing John is manifest in the broad strokes of portraiture, 
and lack of introspective subtlety, with which this character 
is drawn. 
Sir John Perrot was a natural son of Henry vIH. and 
Mary Berkley, afterwards wife of Thomas Perrot of Islington 
and Herrodston in Pembrokeshire. His resemblance to 
Henry VIII. was striking, although his physical proportions 
were still larger. Much as he resembled his father he more 


nearly approximated in type both temperamentally and 
physically to "Coeur-de-lion." Perrot lived about two 
hundred years too late for his own faine. Had he been 
born a couple of centuries earlier he might have lived in 
history as a paladin of romance. He was a fantastical 
recrudescence, of the most fanciful age of chivalry. He is 
reported to have possessed extraordinary strength, and in 
his youth to have been much addicted to brawling. At 
about the age of twenty he owed his introduction to 
Henry viii. to a fight in which he became engaged with 
two of the Yeomen of the Guard who endeavoured to oust 
him from the palace grounds, and whom he worsted in the 
effort. The King appearing upon the scene, Perrot is 
reported to have proclaimed himself his son. Henry 
received him favourably and promised him preferment, but 
died soon afterwards. Edward vI., upon his accession, 
acknowledged his kinship and created him Knight of the 
Bath. He was a very skilful horseman and swordsman, 
and excelled in knightly exercises. 
In I55I he accompanied the Marquis of Southampton 
to France upon the mission of the latter to negotiate a 
marriage between Edward vI. and Elizabeth, daughter of 
Henry II. The French King was so well pleased with him 
that he offered to retain him in his service. While generous 
and brave to an unusual degree, Perrot was extremely hot- 
tempered and of an arbitrary disposition. He seems to 
have inherited all of his father's mental, moral, and physical 
attributes in an exaggerated form, and to have had an ever- 
present consciousness of his kingly lineage. Money flowed 
through his fingers like water; he was rarely out of debt, 
and was relieved in this respect by both Edward vI. and 
Elizabeth. Upon the accession of Queen Mary, Perrot, 


though a Protestant, continued in royal favour; his kinship 
outweighing his religious disadvantage. He was, however, 
never without enemies at Court, created largely by his high- 
handed behaviour. During Mary's reign he was accused of 
sheltering heretics in his house in Wales, and was, in conse- 
quence, committed for a while to the Fleet, but was soon 
released. He saw service in France under the Earl of 
Pcmbroke, being present at the capture of St. Quentin. 
Later on he had a violent disagreement with his old com- 
mander, owing to his refusal to assist the latter in perse- 
cuting Welsh Protestants. A life-enduring friendship was 
later established between them by l'embroke's magnanimity 
in rallying to his support at a crucial period in his career. 
When Protestantism, at a later period, gained the upper 
hand under Elizabeth, he was equally averse to the persecu- 
tion of Catholics. Elizabeth upon her accession continued 
the favours shown him by her predecessors. He was 
selected as one of four gentlemen to carry the canopy of 
state at her Coronation, and was appointed Vice-Admiral 
of the seas about South Wales. In 157o he was made 
President of Munster, where he performed hîs duties in an 
extremely strenuous manner. He used deputies only in 
clerical maiters; where there was fighting to be done he 
was there in person, and usually in the thick of it. Much 
ag he liked to command he never could resist being in the 
actual scrimmage. He challenged James Fitmaurice Fitz- 
gerald, the rebel leader in Munster, to single combat, which 
the latter prudently refused; later on, Fitzgerald Ied him 
and a smaI1 body of men into an ambush where he was out- 
numbered ten to one; Perrot refused to surrender, and 
though he ruade great slaughter of his assailants, was saved 
only by the timely arrival of a smalI body of his own men, 


whom the rebels supposed to be the advance guard of a 
stronger force. He was as generous in victory as he was 
imprudent in action; having defeated and captured Fitz- 
gerald, he forgave him and restored him to his property. 
Such actions on his part being criticised by the Council, 
Perrot, in dudgeon, resigned his command and returned to 
England in 1573. He was received favourably by Elizabeth, 
whose goodwill he still continued to keep in spite of his 
numerous enemies at Court. Retiring to his Welsh estates 
at this rime, he told Burghley that he intended thereafter to 
lead a "countryman's life," and "to keep out of debt." 
Much of his time during the following ten years was spent 
in suppressing piracy on the seas in his capacity of Vice- 
Admiral and Warden of the Marches. In I584 he was 
appointed Viceroy of Ireland, an office which he executed 
vigorously and effectively, but in the saine dominating spirit 
and with the saine impatience of control that had marked 
his earlier Irish career. Exasperated at the delays of the 
Council in agreeing to his plans, he even went to the length 
of addressing the English l'arliament in a letter, which, 
however, was suppressed by Walsingham, who apprehended 
the resentment of Elizabeth at such an unwarranted appro- 
priation of her prerogative. 
While Perrot's physical proportions were much above 
the average he was an extremely graceful and handsome 
man. A German nobleman of the rime, visiting Ireland, 
seeing Perrot at the opening of Parliament, declared that 
though he had travelled all Europe he had never seen 
any one comparable to him for his port and majesty of 
Perrot's arbitrary and dominating manner created con- 
stant friction in his Council and aroused the enmity of his 


coadjutors and subordinates. He challenged Sir Richard 
Bingham, President of Munster, to a duel, and came to 
actual blows in the council chamber with Sir Nicholas 
Bagenal. He aroused the deadly enmity of Loftus, _Arch- 
bishop of Dublin, who set many plots on foot to work his 
undoing. One Philip Williams, a former secretary of 
I errot s, was set on by Loftus to make revelations reflecting 
on Perrot's loyalty, which gained such credence that they 
resulted in his recall to England in I588. He left behind 
him, writes Sir Henry Wallop, "a memory of such hard 
usage and haughty demeanour amongst his associates as I 
think never any before him in this place hath done." _After 
Perrot's return to England, Loffus continued his machina- 
tions against him. Informers of all l<inds were forthcoming 
to accuse him. One Denis O'Roughan, an ex-priest, offered 
to prove that he was the bearer of a letter from Perrot to 
Philip of Spain, promising that if the latter would give him 
the Principality of Wales, he would make him Master of 
England and Ireland. While this evidence was palpably 
false, the excited condition of public feeling in regard to 
the Jesuit plots and the aggressive plans of Spain lent it 
credence. _A year belote, Sir William Stanley, previously 
quite unsuspected of disloyalty, had turned the fortress of 
Deventer over to the Spaniards, and the _Armada, which had 
been in preparation for years, was expected daily on the 
English coasts. Perrot, while not yet placed under arrest, 
was treated coldly by the Court. His was hot a temper that 
could stand such treatment uncomplainingly. Knowing 
that the Queen's iii-usage of him arose largely from the 
influence of Sir Christopher Hatton, he expressed himself 
somewhat freely regarding that gentleman, and in a manner 
that reflected upon the Queen. Hatton's hatred of Perrot 


was well founded, he having seduced Hatton's niece some 
years before. The unceasing plotting of Perrot's enemies 
and his own imprudence of speech led to his arrest early in 
159I. After a short confinement in Burghley's house, he 
was removed to the Tower, where he remained for a year 
before he was brought to trial. At this period and while 
still under restraint at Burghley's house, I date the composi- 
tion of Shakespeare's King" Jolzn. He was tried for high 
treason in April 1592, being charged with using contempt- 
uous words about the Queen, relieving known traitors and 
Romish priests, and also with treasonable correspondence 
with Philip of Spain and the Duke of Parma. All of the 
evidence against him, except that relating to the use of 
disrespectful expressions regarding the Queen, fell to the 
ground. I te was found guilty on this one point and taken 
back to the Tower. Two months later--that is, on 26th 
Junemhe was brought up for judgment and condemned to 
death. "God's death," he exclaimed, on being led back to 
the Tower, "will the Queen surfer her brother to be offercd 
up as a sacrifice to the envy of his frisking adversary?" 
He died a natural death in the Tower in September 1592. 
It is probable that had he lived the Queen would have 
pardoned him. It was rumoured at the time that she 
intended to do so. While such an intention appears prob- 
able from the fact that after his death his son was restored 
to his estates, it is more likely that Perrot's death, while 
under the Queen's disfavour, softened her resentment 
toward his family. Perrot's son, Sir Thomas, who inherited 
his estates, had incurred the ill-will of Elizabeth some years 
before by his clandestine marriage to Dorothy Devereux, 
sister of the Earl of Esex. She vented her displeasure 
upon every one remotely concerncd in this transaction. 


Essex, who was entirely innocent of any complicity in it, 
was frowned upon for a rime, and Bishop Aylmer, under 
whose surreptitiously obtained licence the marriage ceremony 
was performed, was called before the Council. The Queen 
for years declined to receive Lady Perrot, and upon one 
occasion, when visiting the Earl of Essex, refused to remain 
in his house upon the arrival of his sister, and was pacified 
only when Lady Perrot removed to a distant neighbour's. 
It thus appears that the rancour of Elizabeth towards 
Sir John Perrot, which led to his imprisonment in 159I 
and his later prosecution, was intensified by the fact of his 
family connection with the Earl of Essex, who at this saine 
period was deep in her disfavour owing to his own un- 
authorised marriage to Lady Sidney. Ve may then infer 
that Court circles were divided in their attitude towards 
Perrot, and that while Sir Christopher Hatton and his 
followers were antagonistic to him, that Essex and his 
faction were correspondingly sympathetic. 
I am convinced that Shakespeare's first recast of The 
Troublesome Raiçne of King" John was made at about this 
period, at the instigation of a court of action friendly to 
Perrot and antagonistic to Hatton, with the intention of 
arousing sympathy for Perrot by presenting him inferentially 
in heroic colours in the character of Falconbridge. Whatever 
animosities his outspoken criticisms and arbitrary demeanour 
may have aroused, amongst the courtiers and politicians, 
it is likely that his romantic history, his personal bravery, 
and his interesting personality had ruade him a hero to 
the younger nobility and the masses. It is evident that 
the author of The Troublesome Raigne of King" John had 
Perrot in mind in the composition of that play, which is 
usually dated by the text critics in about I588-89. It is 


acknowledged that the old play is based almost entirely 
upon the second edition of Holinshed's Çtronicles, which 
was published in I587, and that the Falconbridge incident 
has no foundation in that source, it being transposed from 
a portion of Hall's Chrouicle« relating to French history 
of an earlier rime. If the original author's intention had 
been to dramatise the reign or character of King John, why 
should he have transposed incidents and characters from 
French history in no way connected with John's reign, and 
also have ruade one of these characters practically the 
protagonist of the action ? Bearing this fact in mind, in 
conjunction with the evident date of composition of the 
old play in or about 1588-89, at the rime when Perrot was 
recalled from Ireland and was being accused of disloyalty 
by his political enemies, it appears evident that the author, 
or authors, of The Troublesome Raig'ne had Perrot's interests 
in mind in its composition, and that its intention and 
personal point were recognised by the public upon its 
presentation, and also that it was published and rewritten 
in I59I, at the rime when Perrot was sent to the Tower, 
in order further to stir up sympathy for his cause by a 
still more palpable and heroic characterisation. 
In recasting the old play in 1591 at the most crucial 
period of Perrot's troubles, Shakespeare---evidently cognizant 
of its original intention and of the interpretation placed 
upon it by the theatre-going public--still further enhanced 
the character of Falconbridge as the protagonist of the 
drama, while he minimised the character of King John and 
quite neglected to explain the reason for much of the plot 
and action, which is quite clear in the old play. The 
neglect of historical and dramatic values, and the absence 
of analytical characterisation shown by Shakespeare in this 


play when it is considered as a dramatisation of the reign 
of King John, has been noticed by many past critics, who 
have not suspected the possibility of an underlying intention 
in its production. Mr. Edward Rose, in his excellent essay 
upon Shakespeare as an adapter, writes : 

"Shakespeare has no doubt kept so closely to the lines 
of the older play because it was a favorite with his audience 
and they had grown to accept its history as absolute fact; 
but one can hardly help thinking that, had he boldly thrown 
aside these trammels and taken John as his Hero, his great 
central figure; had he analyzed and built up before us the 
mass of power, craft, passion, and devilry which ruade up 
the worst of the Plantagenets ; had he dramatized the grand 
scene of the signing of the Charter and shown vividly the 
gloom and horror which overhung the excommunicated 
land ; had he painted John's last despairing struggles against 
rebels and invaders as he has given us the fiery end of 
Macbeth's life, we might have had another Macbeth, another 
Richard, who would by his terrible personality have welded 
the play together and carried us breathless through his 
scene of successive victory and defeat. That, by this means, 
something would be lost, 'tis true--Falconbridge, for example, 
would certainly be lesser," etc. etc. 

While regretting Shakespeare's neglect of the great 
dramatic possibilities in the reign and the character of 
King John, Mr. Rose recognised Shakespeare's evident 
interest in the character of Falconbridge. He writes: 

"In reconstructing the play the great want that struck 
Shakespeare seems to have been that of a strong central 
figure. He was attracted by the rough, powerful nature 
which he could see the Bastard must have been; almost 
like a modern dramatist writing up a part for a star actor, 
he introduced Falconbridge wherever it was possible, gave 


him the end of every act (except the third), and created 
from a rude and inconsistent sketch a character as strong 
as complete and as original as even he ever drew. Through- 
out a series of scenes not otherwise very closely connected, 
this wonderful real type of faulty combative, not ignoble 
manhood, is developed, a support and addition to the scenes 
in which he has least to say, a great power where he is 

Had Mr. Rose endeavoured briefly to describe the 
character of Sir John Perrot, he could hot have done so 
more aptly. 
Shakespeare in recasting The Troublesome Raine of 
King John did not endeavour to dramatise either the 
character or reign of that King, but purposely followed the 
story of the earlier dramatist, having the same personal 
point in view. The author of The Troublesone Raigne of 
King John intentionally subordinated or distorted the actual 
facts of history in order to match his dramatic character- 
isation to the personality of Perrot, and its action to well- 
known incidents of Perrot's career in France and England. 
A palpable instance of this is exhibited in Falconbridge's 
soliloquy in Scene i., when questioned by the King before 
the Court regarding his paternity. Here the old author 
reflects a story of Perrot's youth which his biographers 
state was frequently related by Perrot to his friends. Soon 
after the accession of Edward ri., Perrot having by his 
extravagance become deeply involved in debt purposely 
placed himself in the path of the King's daily walk and, 
hearing his footsteps and pretending hot to know of his 
presence, indulged in a soliloquy complaining of his mis- 
fortunes and lamenting his lack of wisdom and bemoaning 
the nonage of his half-brother the King, who in endeavouring 


to help him would probably be overruled by the Lord 
Protector and the Lords of the Council. He also debated 
aloud with himself other means of retrieving his fortune, such 
as retiring from the Court into the country or betaking him- 
self to the wars. His anonymous bioirapher of 1592 wrote: 
"As he was thus sadly debating the Matter unto hym- 
selfe, the Kinge came behynd hym, and overheard most of 
that which he sayd, who at length stepped before him, and 
asked him, How now Perrott (quoth the Kinge) what is the 
matter that you make this great Moane? To whom Sir 
John Perrott answered, And it lyke your Majestie, I did 
hot thinck that your Hîghness had byn there. Yes, said 
the Kinge, we heard you well inough: And have you spent 
your Livinge in out Service, and is the Kinie so younge, 
and under Government, that he cannot iive you any Thinge 
in Recompence of your Service? Spie out somewhat, and 
you shall see whether the Kinie hath hot Power to bestow 
it on you. Then he most humbly thanked his Majestie 
and shortly affer founde out a Concealment, whîch as soon 
as he sought, the Kinge bestowed it on hym, wherewith he 
paid the most part of his Debtes; and for always after he 
became a better Husband. This story Sir John Perrott 
would sometimes recounte unto his Frends, acknowledging 
it a greate Blessinge of God, that had given him Grace in 
Time to look into his decaying Estate." 
Comparison of this biographical incident with the follow- 
ing passage from Tlze TroublesoJe Raig'ne not only reveals 
the source of the dramatist's inspiration but also accounts 
for a scene that has appeared peculiar to many critics. 
K. JotIr. Ask Philip whose son he is. 
Ess.x. Philip, who was thy father ? 
PHILII'. Mass, my lord, and that's a question : and you had hot taken some 
pains with her before, I should bave desired you to ask my mother. 
K. JotN. Say, who was thy father ? 
PHILIPo Faith, my lord, to answer you sure, he is my father that was 


nearest my mother when I was gotten ; and him I think tobe Sit 
Robert Falconbridge. 
K. JOHN. Essex, for fashion's sake demand again : And so an end to this 
ROBERT. Was ever man thus wrong'd as Robert is ? 
EssEx. Philip ! Speak, I say ; who was thy father ? 
K. JOHN. Young man, how now ? what ! art thou in a trance ? 
Q. ELINOg. Phil!p, awake ! The man is in a dream. 
PII.I'. Philippus, atavis edite Regibus. (As!de.) 
What say'st thou : Phil!p, sprung of ancient Kings ? 
Quo me rapit tempestas ? 
What wind of honour blows this fury forth, 
Or whence proceed these fumes of majesty ? 
Methinks I hear a hollow echo sound, 
That Philip is the son unto a King : 
The whistling leaves upon the trembling trees 
Whistle in concert I ara Richard's son ; 
The bubbling murmur of the water's fall 
Records ihilippus Regis filius ; 
]3irds in their flight make music with their wings, 
Filling the air with glory of my birth ; 
]3irds, bubbles, leaves and mountains, echo, ail 
Ring in mine ears, that I ara Richard's son. 
Fond man, ah, whither art thou carried ? 
How are thy thoughts yrapt in Honour's heaven ? 
Forgetful what thou art, and whence thou cam'st ? 
Thy father's land cannot maintain these thoughts ; 
These thoughts are far unfitting Falconbridge ; 
And well they may ; for why this mounting mind 
Doth soar too high to stoop to Falconbridge 
Why, how now ? Knowest thou where thou art ? 
And know'st thou who expects thine answer here ? 
Wilt thou, upon a frantic madding ve!n, 
Go lose thy land, and say thyself base-bore ? 
lIo, keep thy land, though Richard were thy sire ; 
Whate'et thou think'st say thou art Falconbridge. 
K. JOHN. Speak, man ! be sudden, who thy father was. 
PHILP. Ilease it your Majesty, Sir Robert . . . 
Phil!p, that Falconbridge cleaves to thy jaws : (As!de) 
It will not out ; I cannot for my lire 
Say I ara son unto a Falconbridge. 
Let land and living go ! 'ris Honour's tire 
That makes me swear King Richard was my sire. 
Base to a King, adds title of more state, 
Than knight's begotten, though legitimate. 
Please it your Grace, I ara King Richard's son. 


While it is generally agreed by text critics that Shake- 
speare's King John was drastically revised in about I596, 
the metrical tests and the scarcity of classical allusions 
denote its composition at about the saine period as that of 
the original composition of Richard rZ; and though the 
later time revision of both of these plays has no doubt 
replaced much of Shakespeare's earlier work in them with 
matter of a later time, an early date for their original 
composition is very evident. I therefore assign the original 
composition ofKing./rohn to the early part of the year 1591 , 
and believe, that in writing this play Shakespeare worked 
from a copy of The Troublesome Raig'ne of Kin ./rohn, and 
that he followed, and still further developed, the original 
intention of that play regarding the interests of Sir John 
Perrot. It is evident that KingJohn was written at the 
time The Troublesome Raine was published in I59t, and 
that the play was Burbage property when it was published. 
A play was not as a rule published until it had outrun its 
interest upon the stage, or had been replaced by a new play 
upon the saine subject. 
While records of Henslowe's affiliations with Lord 
Strange's and the Admiral's companies do not appear in his 
1)iay until February 1592, when the Rose Theatre was 
ready for their occupancy, it is likely that their connection 
commenced in the previous year and that his affiliations 
with the Queen's company ended at the same time. The 
number of old plays formerl¥ owned by the Queen's 
company that came into the hands of Strange's, the 
Admiral's, and Pembroke's men at this rime were probably 
purchased from Henslowe, upon the reorganisation of com- 
panies in 1591-92, or else were brought to these companies 
as properties by Queen's men who joined them upon the 


disruption of this large and powerful company at this period. 
Gabriel Spencer, Humphrey Jeffes, and John Sinkler, whose 
names are mentioned in Tke Truc Tragedy of the Duke of 
York, were evidently old Queen's men, the former two joining 
Pembroke's men, and Sinkler, Strange's men at this time. 
The entry of their names as actors in this play was evidently 
ruade while it was a Queen's property and when the Queen's 
company acted under Henslowe's auspices at the Rose 
Theatre between 587 and 59- Both Jeffes and Spencer 
rejoined Henslowe upon the new reorganisation of companies 
in 594, and continued to perform with him and the Lord 
Admiral's men as Pembroke's men untîl 597, when they 
became Admiral's men. After Spencer was killed in a duel 
by Ben Jonson in  598, his widow continued tobe a protg 
or pensioner of Henslowe's for some years. 
The generally accepted belief that the old Henry VI., 
The Contention, and Tke Truc Tragedie were--like Tire 
Troublesome Raigne of King John, Tke Seven Deadly Sins, 
and other plays owned by companies with which Burbage 
was connected--originally Queen's plays, is responsible for 
the otherwise unsupported assumption that Burbage was 
a member and the manager of the Queen's company for 
several years. 
As the disruption of the old Queen's company and its 
reorganisation into a smaller company under the two 
Duttons, as well as the inception of Henslowe's connection 
with Strange's men, evidently took place some rime between 
the Christmas season of 59o-91, when the Queen's company 
performed four rimes at Court and the Admiral-Strange 
company only once, and the Christmas season of 591-92, 
when Strange's company performed six rimes and the 
Queen's only once, and then for the last rime on record, 


it is evident that Pembroke's company was formed also 
in this year. It is hot unlikely then that Shakespeare's 
recast of The Troublesome Raigze of King" John into 
I(ing John was ruade at the instigation of the Earl of 
Pembroke himself at the rime of Perrot's arrest in 59- As 
l'embroke's father was a lifelong friend of l'errot's it is 
extremely probable that he also would be his partisan and 
In every poem or play written by Shakespeare from the 
rime he ruade the acquaintance of the EarI of Southampton 
at the end of 1591, and even for some rime after the accession 
of James I. in 1603, I find some reflection of his interest in 
that nobleman or in the fortunes of the Essex party with 
which he was affiliated. I find no reflection of this interest 
in Kingjrohn nor in Tle Comedy of Errors, except in a few 
passages which palpably pertain to a period of revision in 
the former play. From this and other subjective evidence 
already advanced I date the composition of both of these 
plays in 59, and in doing so conform to the chronological 
conclusions reached by authoritative text critics whose judg- 
ments bave been formed altogether upon textual and stylistic 
While nearly all writers upon the Elizabethan drama 
recognise the topical, political, or controversial nature of 
much of the dramatic representation of that age, itis usual 
to deny for Shakespeare's plays any such topical significance. 
This attitude of the critics is due largely to neglect or 
ignorance of contemporary history, and also to the lack of a 
proper understanding of the chronological order in which 
the plays were produced, and their consequent inability to 
synchronise the characters or action of the plays, with 
circumstances of Shakespeare's life, or with matters of con- 


temporary interest, as well as to the masterly objective skill 
by which he disguised his intentions, in order to protect 
himself and his company from the stringent statutes then 
in force, prohibiting the presentation of matters concerning 
Church or State upon the stage. 




A FEW months after the publication of Greene's A 
Groatsworth of Wit, Henry Chettle issued a book 
entitled Kinde Heartes Dreame, to which he pre- 
faced an apology for publishing Greene's attack upon 
Shakespeare. He writes: " I ara as sorry as if the original 
fault had been my fault, because myselfe have seene his 
demeanour no lesse civill than he exelent in the qualitie he 
professes, besides divers of worship have reported his up- 
rightnes of dealing, which argues his honesty, and his 
facetious grace in writing that approoves his art." When 
critically examined, these references to Shakespeare take on 
a somewhat greater biographical value than has usuaIly been 
claimed for them. Agreeing with the assumption that 
Shakespeare left Stratford between  586 and  587,--that is, 
at between the ages of twenty-two and twenty-three years,-- 
we are informed by these allusions, that by the rime he had 
reached his twenty-eighth year he had attained such social 
recognition as to have enlisted in his behalf the active 
sympathies of" divers of worship,"--that is, men of assured 


social prestige and distinction,--whose protest against 
Greene's attack evidently induced Chettle's amends. 
Chettle's book was published in December I592; just four 
months later, in April  593, I/'enus cmd./Idonis was licensed 
for publication, and shortly afterwards was issued with 
the well-known dedication to Henry Wriothesley, Earl of 
Southampton. It is reasonable to assume that this poem 
and its dedication had been submitted in MS. to Southampton 
and held some rime previous to the date of the application 
for licence to publish, and that his favour was well assured 
before the poem was finally let go to press. The few months 
intervening between Greene's attack and Chettle's apology, 
and the application for licence to publish, may then easily 
be bridged by the reading in MS. form of l/'enus and ./Idonis 
by Southampton's friends. Itis lîkely also that Greene's 
public attack upon Shakespeare led this generous and high- 
spirited nobleman to acquiesce in the use of his name as 
sponsor for the publication. The nearness of these dates 
and incidents gives us good grounds for believing that the 
Earl of Southampton was included in the number referred 
to by Chettle as "divers of worship." In using the expres- 
sion "the qualitie he professes," Chettle plaînly referred to 
Shakespeare's profession as an actor-manager, and of his 
excellence in this respect bears his own record: " myselfe," 
he writes, "]ave seene his demeanour no lesse civill than he 
exelent in the qualitie he professes." Of Shakespeare's 
literary merits, however, he expresses no personal knowledge, 
but tells us that "divers of worship have reported his up- 
rightnes of dealing, which argues his honesty, and his 
facetious grace in writing that approoves his art." Had 
Chettle referred to any of Shakespeare's known dramatic 
work he could have passed his own judgment, as in fact he 


does upon his civility as manager and his excellence as an 
actor. Having seen Shakespeare act he would also, no 
doubt, ha,ge heard his lines declaimed had our poet at that 
period produced upon the iOublic boards any of his original 
dramas. The term "facetious grace" might well be applied 
to the manner and matter of Shakespeare's lighter comedies 
had any of them been iOublicly acted, but would be somewhat 
inapt if applied to the rather stilted staginess of his early 
historical work. Much argument has been advanced in 
various attempts to prove that Shakespeare produced Love's 
Labour's Lost, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Romeo and 
Juliet, and )idsummer 1Vight's Z)ream previous to the year 
591-92, but no particle of evidence, either external or 
internal, has yet been advanced in support of these assump- 
tions; much, however, has been advanced against them. If 
we may accept Shakespeare's own subscribed statement as 
evidence, and that evidence is truthful, lZenus and Adonis 
was his first acknowledged original literary effort. In the 
dedication to Southampton he distinctly names it "the first 
heir of my invention." It is probable, then, that the" facetious 
grace" in writing, ofwhich "di,gers of worship" had reported, 
referred to this poem, which had been held then for several 
months (as were his Sonnets for years) in MS. "among his 
private friends." 
At the time that Chettle published his Khtde t-feartes 
Dreame Shakespeare had already produced T/te Comedy of 
Errors and King" John, and had evidently had a hand with 
Marlowe in the revision of The True Trag'edie of the Duke 
of York. It is unlikely, however, that Chettle had witnessed 
a performance of The Comedy of Errors, which was produced 
primarily for private presentation. The True Tragedie of 
the Duke of York and The Troublesome Raine of King'John 


were both old plays by other hands, and it was for publishing 
Greene's attack upon Shakespeare for his share in the revision 
of the former, that Chettle now apologised. He would 
therefore not regard his revision of Tke Troublesome Ra[ne, 
if he knew of it, as original work. It is evident, then, Shake- 
speare's "facetious grace in writing," of which Chettle had 
heard, referred either to Venus and A donis, or The Cmedy 
of Errors, or both, neither of which were known to the 
public at this rime. 
Friendship may perhaps be too strong a term to apply 
to the relations that subsisted at this date between 
Southampton and Shakespeare, but we have good proof in 
Chettle's references to him late in 1592, in the dedication of 
Venus and Adonis in 1593, and of Lucrece in 1594, as well 
as the first book of Sonnets,--which I shall later show belongs 
to the earlier period of their connection,--that the acquaint- 
ance between these two men, at whatever period it may have 
commenced, was at least in being towards the end of the 
year I592. A brief outline and examination of the recorded 
incidents of Southampton's life in these early years may 
throw some new light upon the earliest stage of this 
acquaintance, especially when those incidents and conditions 
are considered correlatively with the s2irit and intention of 
ttœe 2oems whic[ S hakes2eare wrote for him, and dcdicated to 
hhn a little later. 
Thomas Wriothesley, second Earl of Southampton, and 
father of Shakespeare's patron, died on 4th October I 
Henry, his only surviving son, thus became Earl of South- 
ampton before he had attained his eighth birthday, and 
consequently became, and remained until his majority, a 
ward of the Crown. The Court of Chancery was at that 
period a much simpler institution than it is to-day, and 


Lord Burghley seems personally to have exercised the chief 
functions of that Court in its relation to wards in Chancery, 
and also to have monopolised its privileges. We may infer 
that this was a position by no means distasteful to that 
prudent minister's provident and nepotic spirit. Burghley 
was essentially of that type of statesmen who are better 
contented with actual power, and its accruing profits, than 
the appearance of power and the glory of its trappings. 
Leicester, Raleigh, and Essex might, in turn, pose their day 
as they willed upon the political stage so long as they 
confined themselves to subordinate or ornamental capacities ; 
but whenever they attempted seriously to encroach upon 
the reins of power, he set himself to circumvent them with 
a patience and finesse that invariably wrought their 
In this system of politics he had an apt pupil in his son, 
Sir Robert Cecil, who, viewed through the ages, while pre- 
senting a less solid figure than his father, displays a much 
more refined and Machiavellian craft. 
The attention and care which Burghley bestowed from 
the beginning upon his young ward's affairs bespeak an 
interest within an interest when his prudent and calculating 
nature is borne in mind and the later incidents of his 
guardianship are considered. 
Towards the end of 1585, at the age of twelve, South- 
ampton became a student of St. John's College, Cambridge, 
from whence he graduated as M.A. about four years later, 
i.e. in June I589. After leaving Cambridge in 1589, he 
lived for over a year with ltis motlter at Cowdray House in 
Sussea:. Early in this year, or possibly while Southampton 
was still at Cambridge, Burghley had opened negotiations 
with the Countess of Southampton with the object of 


uniting the interests and fortunes of her son with his own 
house, by consummating a marriage between this wealthy 
and promising young peer and his own granddaughter, 
Lady Elizabeth Vere, daughter of the Earl of Oxford. 
Burghley's extreme interest in the match is fully attested 
by a few letters that are still extant. In the Calendar 
State Papers we have an apologetic letter from Sir Thomas 
Stanhope (whose wife and daughter had recently visited 
Lady Southampton at Cowdray) to Lord Burghley, dated 
l Sth July 159o , assuring him that he had never sought to 
procure the young Earl of Southampton in marriage for 
his daughter, as he knew :Burghley intended marriage be- 
tween him and the Lady Vere. That an actual engagement 
of marriage had already been entered into, we have proof 
in another letter dated I9th September 159o, from Anthony 
Brown, Viscount Montague (Southampton's maternal 
grandfather), to Lord Burghley. Regarding this engage- 
ment he writes, that Southampton "is not averse from it," 
and repeats further, that his daughter, Lady Southampton, 
is hot aware of any alteration in her son's mind. The tone 
of this latter epistle does hot seem to evince any great 
enthusiasm for the match upon the part of either South- 
ampton or his mother.; its rather diffident spirit was not 
lost upon Burghley, who, within a few days of its receipt, 
commanded the attendance of his young ward at Court. 
Upon I4th October I59omthat is, less than a month after 
Viscount Montague's letter to Burghley--we have a letter 
from Lady Southampton announcing her son's departure for 
London, and commending him to Burghley, but making no 
mention of the proposed marriage. From tite fact titat site 
t]mnks 17uritley for t]ze "lon time " ]te "]zad intrusted" ]ter 
son witit /ter, we may ioEer titat kis iOresent deflarture for 


London was occasioned by Burg'ldey's order, and also tlzat 
"long" time," indicated by Lady Southampton's letter, was 
the interval between Southampton's leaving Cambridge in 
June I589 and his present departure for London in October 
I59o. We are also assured by this data that Southampton 
had not travelled upon the Continent previous to his coming 
to Court. Between the rime of his coming to London in 
October 159o and August 1591, I find no dates in con- 
temporary records referring to Southampton ; but it appears 
evident that these nine months were spent at Court. 
Some misgivings regarding the young Earl's desire for 
the match with his granddaughter seem to have arisen in 
Burghley's mind in March 1592, al which lime Southanton 
was witk the Eng'lisIt ./orces Dz France. From this we may 
judge that Southampton's departure for the wars was under- 
taken at his own initiative and not at Burghley's suggestion. 
It appears likely that a lack of marital ardour inspired his 
martial ardour at this rime, and that Burghley was conscious 
of his disinclination to the proposed marriage. In a letter 
dated 6th March I592 (new style)Roger Manners writing 
to Burghley tells him he has been at North Hall with the 
Countess of Warwick, whom he reports as "very well 
inclined to the match between the Earl of ]3edford and the 
Lady Vere." " She is desirous to know," he adds, "if your 
Lordship approves of it." While this letter shows that 
Burghley at this date had doubts regarding Southampton's 
fulfilment of his engagement, other inferences lead me to 
judge that it was hOt finally disruted until tire srin of 
We have record that outhampton's naine was entered 
as a student ofGray's Inn in July I59O,--that is, three months 
before his arrival in London,--and may therefore assume that 


some of his subsequent time in London was occupied in 
more or less perfunctory legal studies. 
As continental travel and an acquaintance with foreign 
tongues--at least Italian and French--had then corne to be 
regarded as a part of a nobleman's education, Burghley, 
soon after Southampton's coming to Court, provided him 
with a tutor of languages in the person of John Florio, who 
thereafter continued in his pay and patronage as late as, if 
not later than, 1598. Even after this date Southampton 
continued to befriend Florio for many years. 
As Florio continued in Southampton's service during the 
entire Sonnet period and played an important rôle in what 
shall hereafter be developed as The Stoy of the Sonnets, and 
as he shall also be shown to have provided Shakespeare with 
a model for several important characters in The Plays of the 
Sonnet Period, a brief consideration of his heredity and 
personal characteristics may help us to realise the manner 
in which Shakespeare held "the mirror up to nature" in 
his dramatic characterisations. 
John Florio was born before 1553 and was the son of 
Michael Angelo Florio, a Florentine Protestant, who left 
Italy in the reign of Henry VIII. to escape the persecution 
in the Valteline. Florio's father was pastor to a congrega- 
tion of his religious compatriots in London for several 
years. He was befriended by Archbishop Cranmer, and 
was patronised by Sir William Cecil during the reign of 
Edward ri.; but lost his church and the patronage of 
Cecil on account of charges of gross immorality that were 
made against him. We are informed by Anthony Wood 
that the elder Florio leff England upon the accession of 
Mary, and moved to the Continent, probably to France, 
where John Florio received his early education. The earliest 


knowledge we have of John Florio in England is that he 
lived at Oxford for several years in his youth, and that, in 
or about I576, he became tutor in Italian to a Mr. Barnes, 
son of the Bishop of Durham. In I58I, according to 
Anthon¥ Wood, Florio matriculated at Magdalen and was 
teacher and instructor to certain scholars at the University. 
In I578 he was still living at Oxford when he dedicated his 
t;irst t;ruites to the Earl of Leicester, his dedication being 
dated "From my lodginis in Worcester Place." In I58o 
he dedicated a translation from the Italian of Ramusio to 
Edward Bray, sheriff of Oxford, and two years later dedi- 
cated to Sir Edmund Dyer a MS. collection of Italian 
proverbs, which is also dated from Oxford on the I2th 
of November I582. 
Nothing definite is known concerning Florio between 
1582 and I59I ; in the latter year he published his Second 
t;ruites, dedicating it to a recent patron, Mr. Nicholas 
Saunder of Ewell. Between about I59o and I59I, and the 
end of I598 and possibly later, he continued in the pa¥ 
and patronage of the Earl of Southampton, dedicating his 
Vorlde of Vordes in the latter year "To the Right Honour- 
able Patrons of Virtue, Patterns of Honour, Roger, Earl of 
Rutland ; Henry, Earl of Southampton ; and Lucy, Countess 
of Bedford." A new and enlarged edition of this book 
containing his portrait was published in I6II. In the 
medallion surrounding this picture he gives his age as 
fifty-eight, which would date his birth in I553, the year of 
Queen Mary's accession. It is probable that Florio under- 
stated his age, as he is said to have received his earl¥ 
education in France and to have returned to England with 
his father upon the accession of Elizabeth in 1558- Anthony 
Wood gives the date of his birth as I545, and though I 


cannot find his authority am inclined to believe the earlier 
date to be correct. Florio was vain enough to prevaricate 
on a matter of this nature. In 16o3 he published his chier 
work, a translation of The Essaies of 2Vontaine. Florio 
was attached to the Court of James I. as French and 
Italian tutor to Prince Henry and the Queen, and also 
held the appointment of Gentleman of the Privy Chamber. 
Florio was married on 9th September 1617 to a Rose 
Spicer, of whom nothing earlier than the marriage record 
is known. From the facts that his daughter Aurelia was 
already married at the rime of his death in 1625, and that in 
his will he leaves her "the wedding ring wherewith I married 
her mother," itis evident that Rose Spicer was his second 
Following a suggestion made by the Rev. J. H. Halpin, 
itis supposed that his first wife was a Rose Daniel, a sister 
of Samuel Daniel, the poet, who was Florio's classfellow at 
Oxford. In the address to dedicatory verses by Daniel, 
prefixed to the 1611 edition of Florio's Vorlde of Wordes 
he calls Florio "My dear friend and brother, Mr. John 
Florio, one of the gentlemen of Her Majesties Royal Privy 
Chamber." From this it has been supposed that Florio's 
first wife was Daniel's sister, and Mr. Halpin inferred that 
she was named Rose from his assumption that Spenser 
refers to her as Rosalinde, and to Florio as Menalcas in 
The Sheioheards Calendar in 1579. Mr. Grosart, who 
carefully investigated the marrer, states that Daniel--who 
in 161I was also a Gentleman of the Privy Chamber--had 
only two sisters, neither of them being named Rose. Itis 
likely, then, that Daniel referred to his official connection 
with Florio by the terre "brother," as in I6O3, in a similar 
address to dedicatory verses prefixed to Montaigne's Essaies 


he refers to him only as " My Friend." There is no record 
of Florio's first marriage. 
It is very unlikely, however, that two women named 
Rose should have corne so intimately into Florio's lire, and 
probable, when all the evidence is considered, that Rose 
Spicer, the "dear wife Rose" mentioned in his will, was the 
" Rosalinde" of his youth, whom, it appears, he had seduced, 
and with whom he had evidently lived in concubinage in 
the intervening years; making tardy amends by marriage 
in I617, only eight years belote his death. His marriage 
to Rose Spicer was evidently brought about by the admoni- 
tions of his friend Theophilus Field, Bishop of Llandaff, 
under whose influence Florio became religious in his de- 
clining years. 
In Florio's will, in which he bequeaths nearly all of his 
small property to his "beloved wife Rose," he regrets that 
he "cannot give or leave her more in requital of her tender 
love, loving care, painful diligence, and continua/labour go me 
in all my fortunes and many sicknesses, than whom never had 
husband a more loving wife, painful nurse, and comfortable 
consort." The words I have italicised indicate conjugal 
relations covering a much longer period than the eight 
years between his formal marriage in I67 and his death 
in I625. The term "all my fortunes" certainly implies a 
connection between them antedating Florio's sixty-fourth 
We may infer that the Bishop of Llandaff and Florio's 
pastor, Dr. Cluet, whom he appointed overseers and executors 
of his will, held Florio in light esteem, as "for certain reasons" 
they renounced its execution. The Earl of Pembroke, to 
whom he bequeathed his books, apparently neglected to 
avail himself of the legacy, and probably for the saine 


reasons. An examination of Florio's characteristic will--in 
the Appendix--will suggest the nature of these reasons. 
Mr. Halpin's inference that Florio as Menalcas had 
already married "Rosalinde" in 1596 , when the last books 
of The t;aerie (ueen were published, is deduced from the 
idea that the originals for "Mirabella" and the "Carle and 
fool" of the T/ze t;aerie (2ueen are identical with those for 
"Rosalinde" and "Menalcas" of T/te S/wt/eards Calendar. 
While it is probable that Spenser had the same originals in 
mind in both cases, an analysis of his verses in The Faerie 
(2ueen shows that the "Carle and fool," who accompany 
Mirabella, represent two persons, i.e. "Disdaine" and 
"Scorne." In the following verses Mirabella speaks: 
" In prime of youthly yeares, when first the flowre 
Of beauty gan to bud, and bloosme delight, 
And Nature me endu'd with plenteous dowre 
Of ail her gifts, that pleased each living sight, 
I was belov'd of many a gentle Knight, 
And sude and sought with ail the service dew: 
Full many a one for me deepe groand and sight, 
And to the dote of death for sorrow drew, 
Complayning eut an me that would not on them rew. 
But let them love that list, or lire or die, 
Me iist not die for any loyers doole ; 
Ne list me leave my loved libertie 
To pitty him that list to play the foole ; 
To love myselfe I learned had in schoole. 
Thus I triumphed long in loyers paine. 
And sitting carelesse on the scorners stoole, 
Did laugh at those that did lament and plaine ; 
But ail is now repayd with interest againe. 
For loe t. the winged God that woundeth harts 
Causde me be called to accompt therefore ; 
And for revengement of those wrongfull smarts, 
Which I to others did inflict afore, 
&ddeem'd me to endure this penaunce sore ; 
That in lltis zoize, and lltls unmeete array, 
With these two lewd companions, and no more, 
19isdaine and Scorne, 1 throuffh the world shouM stray." 



Assuming " Mirabella" and « Rosalinde" to indicate the 
saine woman, i.e. Rose Spicer, whom Florio married in 
I617, but with whom he had been living in concubinage 
for about eighteen years when the last three books of 
The Faerie Queen were published, Mirabella's penance of 
being forced to "stray through the world" accompanied 
by "Disdaine" and "Scorne," would match her plight 
as Florio's mistress, but would not apply to her as his 
The Rosalinde indicated by Spenser was undoubtedly 
a north of England girl, while Samuel Daniel belonged to a 
Somerset family. While itis certain that Florio was married 
before I67, itis evident he did not marr¥ a Miss Daniel, and 
that Menalcas had hot married Rosalinde in t596; yet itis 
practicall¥ certain that Spenser refers to Florio as Menalcas, 
and that Shakespeare recognised that fact in I592 and 
pilloried Florio to the initiated of his da), as Parolles in 
Love's Labour's Won in this connection. Florio habitually 
signed himself "Resolute John Florio" to acquaintances, 
obligations, dedications, etc. When he commenced this 
practice I cannot learn, but the use of the word was known 
to Spenser in I579, as the Greek word Menalcas means 
Resolute. Itis not difficult to fathom Spenser's meaning 
in regard to the relations between Menalcas and Rosalinde, 
and itis clear that he had a poor opinion of the moral 
character of the former, and plainly charges him with 
"And thou, Menalcas, that by treacheree 
Didst underfong my lasse to waxe so light, 
Shouldest well be known for such thy villanee. 
But since I am hot as I wish I were, 
Ve gentle Shepheards, which your flocks do feede, 
Whether on hylls, or dales, or other where, 
Beare witnesse ail of thys so wicked deede : 


And tcll the lasse, whose flowre is woxe a weede, 
And faultlesse fayth is turned to faithlesse fere, 
That she the truest shepheards hart ruade bleede, 
That lyves on earth, and loved her most dere." 

The very unusual word "underfong" which Spenser uses in 
these verses, and the gloss which he appends to the verses 
of The Shepheards Caleudar for June, were hot lost upon 
Shakespeare. Spenser, in the glossary, writes : "Menalcas, 
the name of a shephearde in Virgile; but here is meant a 
person unknowne and secrete, against whome he often bitterly 
invayeth. Underfonge, undermyne, and deceive by false 
suggestion." The immoral flippanc}' of the remarkable 
dialogue between the disreputable Parolles and the other- 
wise sweet and maidenly ttelena, in Act I. Scene i. of All's 
IVcll that Ends IVell, has often been noticed by critics as a 
peculiar lapse in dramatic congruity on the part of Shake- 
speare. This is evidently one of several such instances in 
his plays where he sacrificed his objective dramatic art to a sub- 
jective contingency, though by doing so undoubtedly adding 
a greater interest to contemporary presentations not only b¥ 
the palpable reflection of Spenser's point at Florio in the 
pla}' on the word "undermine" in a similar connection, but 
also as reflecting the wide latitude his Italianate breeding 
and manners and his Mediterranean unmoralit}' allowed 
him and his type to take in conversing with English gentle- 
women at that period. 
The Rev. J. H. Halpin was not far from the truth in 
saying that "Florio was beset with tempers and oddities 
which exposed him more perhaps than an}, man of his 
rime to the ridicule of his contemporaries"; and that "he 
was in his literar}' career, jealous, vain, irritable, pedantic, 
bombastical, petulant, and quarrelsome, ever on the 


watch for an affront, always in the attitude of a fretful 
Florio became connected as tutor of languages with the 
Earl of Southampton some time belote the end of April 
I59I , when he issued his Second Fruites and dedicated it 
to his recent patron, Nicholas Saunder of Ewell. In this 
publication there is a passage which hot only exhibits the 
man's unblushing effrontery, but also gives us a passing 
glimpse of his early relations with his noble patron, the 
spirit of which Shakespeare reflects in Falstaff's impudent 
familiarity with l'rince Hal. This passage serres also to 
show that at the rime it was written, the last of April 
Florio had entered the pay and patronage of the Earl of 
Southampton. Fie introduces two characters as follows, and, 
with true Falstaflîan assurance, gives them his own and the 
Earl of Southampton's Christian names, Henry and John. 
Falstaffinvariably addresses the Prince as Fial. 

I 1 1 RY. Let us make a match at tennis. 
JoVlN. Agreed, this fine morning calls for it. 
HV:NRY. And after, we will go to dinner, and aftcr dinner we will see a play. 
JOHN. The plaies they play in England are neither right comedies nor right 
HENRY. But they do nothing but play every day. 
JohN. Yea : but they are neither right comedies nor right tragedies. 
IIENRY. How would ),ou naine them then ? 
JOHN. Representations of history, without any decorum. 

It shall later be shown that Chapman also noticed 
Florio's presumption in this instance, and that he recog- 
nised the fact, or else assumed as a fact, that Florio's 
stricture on English historical drama was directed against 
We mayjudge from the conversation between Henry and 
John that Southampton, in attaining a colloquial knowledge 


of French and Italian, entered into intimate relations with 
Florio, and from the interest that he displayed in dramatic 
affairs in later years, that during his first year in London he 
would be likely frequently to witness the performance of 
plays in the public theatres. It is probable, then, that he 
would have seen performances by both Pembroke's and 
Strange's companies in this year. 
It is evident that an acquaintance between the Earl of 
Southampton and Shakespeare was not formed previous to 
Southampton's coming to Court in November I590. A first 
acquaintance undoubtedly had its inception between that 
date and Southampton's departure for France early in 1592. 
I shall now develop evidence for my belief that their first 
acquaintance was made upon the occasion of the Queen's 
progress to Cowdray and Tichfield House in August and 
September 1591. 
I find no record in the State Papers concerning South- 
ampton between the date of his departure from home for the 
Court in October 159o, and 2nd March 1592 (nev style), 
when he wrote from Dieppe to the Earl of Essex. We may, 
however, infer that he was still in England on 15th August 
1591, the date of the arrival of the Queen and Court at 
Cowdray House. It is trident also that the proffress would 
hot have roceeded a week later to his own county seat, Tich- 
field Itouse, unless Ire was iOresent. We have evidence in the 
State Papers that the itineraries of the Queen's progresses 
were usually planned by Burghley; the present progress to 
Cowdray and Tichfield was undoubtedly arranged in further- 
ance of Iris n,tatriitoniaI iolatts for his ffratddaetffkter and 
Soutlza»pton. The records of this progress give us details 
concerning the entertainments for the Queen, which were 
given at some of the other noblemen's houses she visited; 


the verses, masques, and plays being still preserved in a few 
instances, even where she tarried for only a few days. The 
Court remained at Cowdray House for a full week. No 
verses nor plays recited or performed upon this occasion, nor 
upon the occasion of her visit, a week later, to the Earl of 
Southampton's house at Tichfield, have been preserved in 
the records. It is very probable, however, in the light of the 
facts to follow, that out oet and his fellow-layers attended 
the tarl of Nuthaton, both at Cowdray Huse and at 
Tichfield, during this pro¢ress. In the description of the 
Queen's entertainment during her stay at Cowdray, I find 
a most suggestive resemblance to much of the action and 
plot of Love's Labour's Lost. The Queen and Court arrived 
at Cowdray House at eight o'clock on Saturday evening, 
 5th August. That night, the records tell us, "her Majesty 
took her rest and so in like manner the next, which 
was Sunday, being most royally feasted, the proportion of 
breakfast being 3 oxen and 4o geese." "The next day," we 
are informed, "she rode in the park where a delicate bower" 
was prepared and "a nymph with a sweet song de]ivered 
her a crossbow to shoot at the deer of which she killed 
three or four and the Countess of Kildare one." In Love's 
Labour's Lost the Princess and her ladies shoot at deer from 
a coppice. 

PRINCESS. Then, forester, my friend, where is the bush 
That we must stand and play the murderer in? 
FOR. Hereby, upon the edge of yonder coppice ; 
A stand where you may make the fairest shoot. 

In Act IV. Scene il., Holofernes makes an "extemporal 
epitaph on the death of the deer," which is reminîscent 
of the "sweet song" delivered to tbe Queen by "the 

HOL. Sir Nathaniel, will you hear an extempoml epitaph on the death of the 
deer ? And, to humour the ignorant, call I the deer the princess killed a pricket. 
I will something affect the letter, for it argues facility. 

The preyful princess pierced and prick'd a pretty pleasing pricket ; 
Some sa}, a sore, but hOt a sore, till now made sore with shooting. 
The dogs did yell; put L to sore, then sorel iumps from thicket ; 
Or pricket sore, or else sorel ; the people fall a-hooting. 
If sore be sore, then L to sore makes fifty sores one sorel. 
Of one sore I an hundred make by adding but one more L. 

In a formerublication I bave shown that an antaffonism had 
developed between Shakeseare and Chapman as early as the year 
 594, and in a more recent one bave shown Matthew Roydon's 
conlicacy with Chaman in his hostility to Shakespeare, and 
also Shakespeare's cognizance of it. I have displayed Shake- 
speare's answers to the attacks of these scholars in his cari- 
cature of Chapman as Holofernes, and of the curate Roydon 
as the curate Nathaniel. Chapman's attack upon Shake- 
speare in  593 in the early Histriomasti.v and his reflection 
of the Earl of Southampton as Mavortius give evidence that 
his hostility owed its birth to Shakespeare's success in winning 
the patronage and friendship of Southampton; unless Chapman 
and Roydon had already solicited this nobleman's patronage, 
or had at least corne into contact with him in some manner, 
and considered themselves displaced by Shakespeare, both 
the virulence of their opposition to our poet, and the rnanner 
and matter of Chapman's slurs against him in Histriomasti;c, 
and in the dedications of his poems to Matthew Roydon in 
1594-95, are unaccountable. 
It is likely that Matthew Roydon was one of the theo- 
logical poets--who wrote anonymously for the stage-- 
mentioned by Robert Greene in the introduction to The 


Farewdl to Folly, which was published in 1591. It is 
probable also that Roydon is referred to as a writer for the 
stage in Greene's Groatsworth of I/Vit, where, after indicating 
Marlowe, Peele, and Nashe, he says: 

"In this I might insert two more who have both writ against (for) these 
buckram gentlemen." 

Now seeing that both Roydon and Chapman are satirised 
by Shakespeare in Love's Labour's Lost, it occurs to me that 
the "preyful Princess" verses quoted above (which display 
parody in every line) are intended by Shakespeare to carica- 
ture the known work of the author of the sweet song delivered 
to the Queen by the nymph, and consequently that this song 
was from the pen of one of this learned couple. As I have 
already noticed, in the records of the Queen's sta¥ at the other 
noblemen's houses that she visited on this progress, many 
verses and songs appear which were written specially for 
these occasions, while no songs, nor verses, have been preserved 
from the Cowdray or Tichfield festivities, occasions when 
they would be likely to have been used, considering 
Southampton's interest in literary matters and the court 
paid to him by the writers of the day. Among the poems 
which I have collected that I attribute to Roydon, I have 
elsewhere noticed one that Shakespeare makes fun of at 
a later rime in. Midsummer Nffht's Dream--that is, The 
Shepherd's Slumber. This poem deals with the exact season 
of the year when the Queen was at Covdray"peascod 
tîme "and also with the killing of deer, 

" when hound to horn gives ear till buck be killed "; 

and in one verse describes just such methods of killing deer 
as is suggested, both in Love's Labour's Lost and in Niclzols 


Progresses, which latter records the entertainment for the 
Queen at Cowdray House. 

"And like the deer, I make them fall: 
That runneth o'er the lawn. 
One drops down here: another there : 
In bushes as they groan ; 
I bend a scornful, careless ear, 
To hear them make their moan." 

May not this be the identical "sweet song" delivered by the 
nymph to the Queen, and the occasion of the progress to 
Cowdray, in 159I, indicate the entry of Roydon and Chapman 
into the rivalry between Shakespeare and the scholars 
inaugurated two years earlier by Greene and Nashe ? 
This poem which I attribute to Roydon has all the 
manner of an occasional production and is about as senseless 
as most of his other "absolute comicke inventions." The 
masque-like allegory it exhibits, introducing "Delight," 
"Wit," "Good Sport," "Honest Meaning" as persons, was 
much affected by the Queen and Court in their entertain- 
ments. At the marriage of Lord Herbert, son of the Earl of 
Worcester, in I599, a masque was given for the Queen in 
which we are told eight ladies of the Court performed. One 
of these ladies "wooed her to dawnce, her Majesty asked 
what she was, affection she said, affection, said the Queen, 
affection is false, yet her Majesty rose and dawnced." During 
the stay at Cowdray similar make-believe and allegory were 
evidently used in the entertainments given for the Queen. 
Roydon's poem may, like Love's Labour's Lost, be a reflection 
of such courtly nonsense. 
During the first three days of the Queen's stay at Cowdray 
she was feasted and entertained (the records inform us)by 
Lady Montague, but on the fourth day " she dined at the 
Priory," where Lord Montague kept bachelor's hall, and 


whither he had retired to receive and entertain the Queen 
without the assistance of Lady Montague. This reception 
and entertainment of the Queen by Lord Montague was, no 
doubt, accompanied by fantastic allegory--Lord Montague 
and his friends playing the parts of hermits, or philosophers 
in retreat, as in the case of the King of Navarre and his 
friends in Love's La3our's Lost. The paucity of plot in this 
play has been frequently noticed, and no known basis for its 
general action and plot has ever been discovered or proposed. 
At this rime (59I) Shakespeare had been in London 
only from four to rive years, and, judging from the prominence 
in his profession which he shortly afterwards attained, we 
may be assured that these were years of patient drudgery in 
his calling. Neither in his Stratford years, nor during these 
inceptive theatrical years, would he be likely to have had 
much, if any, previous experience with the social lire of the 
nobility; yet here, in what is recognised by practically all 
critical students as his earliest comedy, the original com- 
position of which is dated by the best text critics in, or about, 
1591, he displays an intimate acquaintance with their sports 
and customs which in spirit and detail most significantly 
coincide with the actual records of the Queen's progress, late 
in 159 I, to Cowdray House, the home of the mother of the 
nobleman whose fortunes, from this rime forward for a period 
of from ten to fifteen years, may be shown to have influenced 
practically every poem and play he produced. 
As the incidents of the Queen's stay at Cowdray are 
reflected in the plot and action of Love's La3our's Lost, so, 
in AlTs [Vell t/at Ends Vell, or, at least, in those portions 
of that play recognised by the best critics as the remains of 
the older play of Love's Laour's IVon, the incidents and 
atmosphere of the Queen's stay at Tichfield House are also 


suggested. The gentle and dignified Countess of Rousillon 
suggests the widowed Countess of Southampton; the wise 
and courtly Lafeu gives us a sketch of Sir Thomas Heneage, 
the Vice-Chamberlain of the Court, who married Lady 
Southampton about three years later. Bertram's insensibility 
to Helena's love, and indifference to her charms, as well as 
his departure for the French Court, coincide with the actual 
facts in the case of Southampton, who at this rime was 
apathetic to the match planned by his friends, and who also 
left home for France shortly affer the Queen's visit to 
Cowdray. Parolles is, I ara convinced, a caricature from 
lire, and in his original characterisation in Love's La3our's 
l, Von was probably a replica of the original Armado of the 
earliest form of Love's La3our's Lost. Both of these characters 
I believe I can demonstrate to be early sketches, or caricatures, 
of John Florio, the saine individual who is caricatured in 
Hmy IZ. and the )V[erry IVives of I, Vindsor as Sir John 
Falstaff. The characterisation of Parolles as we have it in 
All's rell that Ends Well is probably much more accentuated 
than the Parolles of the earlier form of the play, in which he 
would most likely have been presented as a fantastical fop, 
somewhat of the order of _Armado. By the rime the earlier 
play of 1591--92 was rewritten into its present form, in 1598, 
the original of the character of Parolles had in Shakespeare's 
opinion developed also into a "misleader of youth" ; in fact, 
into another Falstaff, minus the adipose tissue. 
As both Love's Labour's Lost and Love's Labour's l'Von 
(All's lVell that Ends Well in its early form) reflect persons 
and incidents of the Cowdray-Tichfield progress, it is evident 
that both plays were composed after the event. It is of 
interest then to consider which, if any, of Shakespeare's plays 
were likely to have been prescnted upon that occasion. 


As this narrative and argument develop, a date of com- 
position later than the date of the Cowdray progress--when 
Shakespeare first formed the acquaintance of the Earl of 
Southampton--and based upon subjective evidence regarding 
the poet's relations with this nobleman, yet coinciding with 
the chronological conclusions of the best text critics, shall be 
demonstrated for all of Shakespeare's early plays with the 
exception of King'John and The Comedy of Errors. In all 
the early plays except these two I find palpable rime reflec- 
tions of Shakespeare's interest in the Earl of Southampton 
or his affairs. I therefore date the original composition of 
both of these early plays previous to the Cowdray progress, in 
September  59x. I have already advanced my evidence for 
the original composition of Shakespeare's KingJohn early in 
59- I cannot so palpably demonstrate the composition of 
The Comedy of Errors in this year, but, following the lead of 
the great majority of the text critics who date its composition 
in this year, and finding no internal reflection of Southampton 
or his affairs, I infer that it was written after the composition 
of KingJohn, before Shakespeare had marie Southampton's 
acquaintance and intentionally for presentation before the 
Queen and Court at Cowdray or Tichfield. The fact that 
The Comedy of Errors is the shortest of all Shakespeare's 
plays, the farce-like nature of the play and its recorded 
presentation in  594 before the members of Gray's Inn, with 
which Southampton was connected, marks it as one of the 
plays originally composed for private rather than for public 
presentation. It is evident that it never proved sufficiently 
popular upon the public boards to warrant its enlargement 
to the size of the average publicly presented play. 
While I cannot learn the actual date at which 
Southampton left England, we have proof in a letter 


written by him to the Earl of Essex, that he was in 
France upon 2nd March 1592. 
When we take into consideration the fact that this visit 
of the Queen's to Cowdray and Tichfield was arranged by 
Burghley in furtherançe of his plans to marry his grand- 
daughter to the Earl of Southampton, and that Shakespeare's 
earlier sonnets (which I shall argue were written with the 
intention of forwarding this match) are of a period very 
slightly later than this, it is evident that the incidents of the 
Queen's stay at Cowdray and Tichfield would become known 
to Shakespeare by report, even though he was not himself 
present upon those occasions. The plot of the first four 
Acts of Love's Labour's Lost, such as it is, bears such a 
strong resemblance to the recorded incidents of that visit 
as to suggest reminiscence much more than hearsay. 
While Burghley in this affair was, no doubt, primarily 
seeking a suitable alliance for his granddaughter, the rather 
hurried and peremptory manner of Southampton's invitation 
to Court may partially be accounted for by other motives, 
when the conditions of the Court and its intrigues at that 
immediate period are considered. 
The long struggle for political supremacy between 
Burghley and Elizabeth's first, and most enduring favourite, 
Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, came to an end in 1588 
through the death of Leicester in that year. While 
Elizabeth's faith in Burghley's political wisdom was never 
at any time seriously shaken by the counsels of her more 
polished and courtly confidant, Leicester, there was a 
period in her long flirtation with the latter nobleman when 
the great fascination, which he undoubtedly exercised over 
her, seemed likely to lead her into a course which would 
completely alter, hOt only the political complexion of the 


Court, but possibly also the actual destinies of the Crown. 
There was never at any period of their career any love 
lost between Burghley and Leicester; the latter, in the 
heyday of his favour, frequently expressed himself in such 
plain terres regarding ]3urghley that he could have had 
little doubt of the disastrous effect upon his own fortunes 
which might ensue from the consummation of Leicester's 
matrimonial ambitions. He, withal, wisely gauged the 
character and limits of Leicester's influence with Elizabeth. 
While Leicester played upon the vanities and weakness of 
the woman, Burghley appealed to the strong mentality and 
love of power of the queen; yet though he unceasingly 
opposed Leicester's projects and ambitions, wherein they 
threatened his own political supremacy, or the good of the 
State, he seems to have recognised the impossibility of 
undermining the Queen's personal regard for her great 
favourite, which continued through all the years of his 
selfish, blundering, and criminal career, down to the day 
of his death. While Leicester also in rime appears to have 
realised the impossibility of seriously impairing ]3urghley's 
power, he, to the last, lost no opportunity of batîfling that 
minister's more cherished personal policies. In introducing 
his stepson, Essex, to Court lire and the notice of the 
Queen, in 1583, it is evident that he had in mind designs 
other than the advancement of his young kinsman. Essex, 
from the first, seems to have realised in whose shoes he 
trod, and for the first ten years of his lire at Court fully 
maintained the Leicester tradition, and seemed likely in 
time even to refine upon and enhance it. Had this young 
nobleman possessed ordinary equipoise of temper it is 
questionable if ]3urghley would later have succeeded in 
securing the succession of his own place and power to his 


son, Sir Robert Cecil. Preposterous as it may seem, when 
judged from a modern point of view, that the personal 
influence of this youth of twenty-three with the now aged 
Queen should in any serious measure have menaced the 
firm power and cautious policies of the experienced Burghley, 
we have abundance of evidence that he and his son regarded 
Essex's growing ascendancy as no light matter. From 
their long experience and intimate association with Elizabeth, 
and lnowing her vanities and weaknesses, as well as her 
strength, they apprehended in her increasing favour for 
Essex the beginning and footing of a power which might 
in time disintegrate their own solid foundations. The 
subtlety, dissimulation, and unrelenting persistency with 
which Burghley and his son opposed themselves to Essex's 
growing influence while yet posing as his confidants and 
well-wishers, fully bespeal the measure of their fears. While 
Burghley himself lacked the polished manners and graceful 
presence of the courtier, which so distinguished Raleigh, 
Leicester, and Essex, and owed his influence and power 
entirely to qualifies of the mind and his indefatigable 
application to business, he had corne to recognise the 
importance of these more ornamental endowments in 
securing and holding the regard of Elizabeth. His son, 
Sir Robert Cecil, who was not only puny and deformed, 
but also somewhat sickly ail his days, ruade, and could 
make, no pretensions to courtier-lile graces, and must depend 
for Court favour, to a yet greater degree than his father, 
upon his own powers of mind and will. To combat Essex's 
social influence at Court, these two more clerlly politicians, 
soon affer Essex's appearance, proceeded to supplement 
their own power by making an ally of the accomplished 
Raleigh; to whorn, previous to this, they had sbown little 


favour. They soon succeeded in fomenting a rivalry between 
these two courtiers which, with some short periods of truce, 
continued until their combined machinations finally brought 
Essex to the b]ock. How Sir Robert Cecil, having used 
Raleigh as a tool against Essex, in turn effected his political 
ruin shall be shown in due course. 
We shall now return to Southampton and to the period 
of his coming to London and the Court, towards the end 
of October, in the year I59o. A recent biographer of 
Shakespeare, writing of Southampton, sums up the incidents 
of this period in the following generalisation: " It was 
naturally to the Court that his friends sent him at an early 
age to display his varied graces. He can hardly have 
been more than seventeen when he was presented to his 
Sovereign. She showed him kindly notice, and the Earl 
of Essex, her brilliant favourite, acknowledged his fascination. 
Thenceforth Essex displayed in his welfare a brotherly 
interest which proved in course of rime a very doubtful 
blessing." This not only hurries the narrative but also 
misconstrues the facts and ignores the most interesting 
phases of the friendship between these noblemen, as they 
influenced Southampton's subsequent connection with Shake- 
speare. Essex may have acknowledged Southampton's 
fascination at this date, though I find no evidence that he 
did do so, but for the assertion that he "t]tenceforth" dis- 
played in his welfare a brotherly interest there is absolutely 
no basis. Ail reasonable inference, and some actual evidence, 
lead me to quite divergent conclusions regarding the 
relations that subsisted between these young noblemen at 
this early date. Southampton's interests, it is true, became 
closely interwoven with those of Essex at a somewhat 
later period when he had become enamoured of Essex's 


cousin, Elizabeth Vernon, whom he eventually married. 
The inception of this latter affair cannot, however, at the 
earliest, be dated previous to the late spring" of I594. At 
whatever date Southampton and Essex became intimate 
friends, there can be no doubt that such a conjunction was 
contray fo Burgkleys htentions in bringinff Southampton 
to the Court in October I59O. In making use of Raleigh 
to counteract Essex's influence with the Queen, the Cecils 
were well aware, as their subsequent treatment of Raleigh 
proves, that they might in him augment a power which, 
if opposed to their own, would prove even more dangerous 
than that of Essex; yet feeling the need of a friend and 
ally in the more intimately social life of the Court, whose 
interests would be identical with their own, they chose 
what appeared to them an auspicious moment to introduce 
their graceful and accomplished prot6g6, and prospective 
kinsman, to the notice of the Queen, whose predilection 
for handsome young courtiers seemed to increase with 
advancing age. 
Essex, although then but in his twenty-sixth year, had 
spent nearly six years at Court. During this period he had 
been so spoiled and petted by his doting Sovereign that he 
had already upon several occasions temporarily turned her 
favour to resentment by his arrogance and ill-humour. In 
his palmiest days even Leicester had never dared to take 
the liberties with the Queen now, at rimes, indulged in by 
this brilliant but wilful youth. In exciting Essex's hot and 
hasty retaper the watchful Cecils soon found their most 
effectual means of defence. Early in the summer of I59O, 
Essex, piqued by the Queen's refusal of a favour, committed 
what was, up till that time, his most wilful breach of Court 
decorum and flagrant instance of opposition to the Queen's 


wishes. Upon the 6th of .April in that year the office of 
Secretary of State became vacant by the death of Sir Francis 
Walsingham. Shortly afterward, Essex endeavoured to 
secure the office for William Davison, who, previous to I587, 
had acted in the capacity of assistant to Walsingham and 
was therefore presumably well qualified for the vacant post. 
Upon the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots, in I587, 
Elizabeth, in disavowing her responsibility for the act, had 
ruade a scapegoat of Davison, who, she claimed, had secured 
ber signature to the death-warrant by misrepresentation, 
and had proceeded with its immediate execution contrary 
to her commands. Though she deceived no one but herself 
by this characteristic duplicity, she never retreated from the 
stand she had taken, but, feeling conscious that she was 
doubted, to enforce belief in her sincerity, maintained her 
resentment against Davison to the last. Upon Elizabeth's 
refusal of the Secretaryship to his luckless protég, Esse×, 
in dudgeon, absented himself from the Court, and withîn 
a few weeks chose a yet more effectual means of exas- 
perating the Queen by privately espousing Sir Francis 
Walsingham's daughter, Lady Sidney, widow of the re- 
nowned Sir Philip. When knowledge of this latest action 
reached the Queen her anger was kindled to a degree that 
(to the Court gossips) seemed to preclude Essex's forgiveness, 
or the possibility of his reinstatement in favour. With the 
intention of increasing Essex's iii-humour and still further 
estranging him from the Queen, Burghley noxv proposed that 
all his letters and papers be seized. I-le also c]wse t]ds period 
of estraneme»t to introd«ce ]ds îrospective ffrandson-in-law, 
SoutIamton, to tire Court. The very eagerness of Essex's 
enemies, however, appears to bave cooled the Queen's anger, 
as we find that within a month of Southampton's arrival at 


the Court--that is, on 26th November--Essex is reported as 
"once more in good favour with the Queen." 
In the light of the foregoing facts and deductions, it does 
not seem likely that Burghley would encourage a friendship 
between Essex and Southampton. The assumption that he 
would (at least tacitly) seek rather to provoke a rivalry is 
under the circumstances more reasonable. Though I find 
no record in the State Papers of this immediate date that 
hostility was aroused between these young courtiers, in a 
paper of a later date, which refers to this rime, I find fair 
proof that such a condition of affairs did at this period 
actually exist. In the declaration of the treason of the Earl 
of Essex, I6OO-I, in the State Papers we have the following 
passage:"There was present this day at the Council, the 
Earl of Southampton, with whom in former rimes he 
(Essex) ltad been at emulations and differences at Curt, 
but after, Southampton, having married his kinswoman 
(Eizabeth Vernon), plunged himself wholly into his 
fortunes," etc. 
Though the matrimonial engagement between Burghley's 
granddaughter and Southampton never reached its consum- 
mation, and we have evidence in Roger Manners' letter ot 
6th 1V[arch I592 that some doubt in regard to its fulfilment 
had even then arisen in Court circles, we have good grounds 
for assuming that all hope for the union was hOt abandoned 
by Burghley till a later date. Lady Elizabeth Vere eventu- 
ally married the Earl of Derby in January 595. This 
marriage was arranged for in the summer of the preceding 
year, and after the Earl of Derby had corne into his titles 
and estates, through the death of his elder brother, in 
April 1594. 
Referring again to the State Papers, we have on 


I Sth August 1594 the statement of a Jesuit, named 
Edmund Yorke, who is reported as saying "]3urghley 
poisoned the Earl of Derby so as to marry his grand- 
daughter to his brother." Fernando Stanley, Earl of Derby, 
died under suspicious circumstances after a short illness, and 
it was reported at the rime that he was poisoned. As he 
had recently been instrumental in bringing about the 
execution of a prominent Jesuit, whom he had accused of 
having approached him with seditious proposais, it was 
believed at the time that an emissary of that society was 
concerned in his death. While disregarding Yorke's 
atrocious imputation against Burghley, we may safely date 
the inception of the negotiations leading to Elizabeth Vere's 
marriage somewhere after I6th April, the date of the preced- 
ing Earl's death ; ]3urghley did hot choose younger sons in 
marriage for his daughters or granddaughters. Thus we 
are fully assured that, at however earlier a date the prospects 
for a marriage between Southampton and Lady Vere were 
abandoned, they had ceased tobe entertained by the early 
summer of 1594. Shortly after this, Southampton's infatua- 
tion for Elizabeth Vernon had its inception. The intensity 
of the young nobleman's early interest in this latter affaii 
quite precludes the neiessity for Shakespeare's poetical 
incitements thereto; we may therefore refer the group of 
sonnets, in which Shakespeare urges his friend's marriage, 
to the more diffident affair of the earlîer years and to a 
period antedating the publication of Venus and Adozis in 
May 1593. A comparison of the argument of Venus and 
Adonis with that of the first book of Sonnets will indicate a 
common date of production, and that Shakespeare wrote 
both poems with the same purpose in view. 



ROBABLY the most remarkable and interesting 
oesthetic study of a single Shakespearean character 
ever produced is Maurice Morgann's Essaip ou the 
1)ramatic Çharacter of Sir Jo/zz Falstaff, which was written 
in 1774, and first published in 1777. This excellent piece 
of criticism deserves a much wider cognizance than it 
has ever attained; only three editions have since been 
Morgann's Essay was originall¥ undertaken in jest, in 
order to disprove the assertion made b¥ an acquaintance 
that Falstaff was a coward; but, inspired b¥ his subject, it 
was continued and finished in splendid earnest. As his 
analysis of the character of Falstaff becomes more intimate 
his wonder grows at the concrete human personalit¥ he 
apprehends. Falstaff ceases tobe a fictive creation, or the 
mere dramatic representation of a type, and takes on a 
distinctive individualit¥. He writes : 
"The reader will not now be surprised if I affirm that 
those characters in Shakespeare, which are seen onl¥ in part, 
are yet capable of being unfolded and understood in the 
whole; ever¥ part being in fact relative, and inferring all the 
rest. Itis true that the point of action or sentiment, which 


we are most concerned in, is always held out for our special 
notice. But who does not perceive that there is a peculiarity 
about it, which conveys a relish of the whole ? And very 
frequently, when no particular point presses, he boldly makes 
a character act and speak from those parts of the composi- 
tion, which are inferred only, and hot distinctly shewn. 
This produces a wonderful effect; it seems to carry us 
beyond the poet to nature itself, and give an integrity and 
truth to facts and character, which they would not otherwise 
obtain. And this is in reality that art in Shakespeare, 
which being withdrawn from our notice, we more emphatic- 
ally call nature. A felt propriety and truth from causes 
unseen, I take tobe the highest point of Poetic composition. 
I f the characters of Shakespeare are thus whole, and as it were 
original, while those of almost all other writers are mere 
imitation, it may be fit to consider them rather as Historic 
than Dramatic beings; and, when occasion requires, to 
account for their conduct from the whole of character, from 
general principles, from latent motives, and from policies 
hot avowed." 

Morgann was closer to the secret of Shakespeare's art 
than he realised; he had really penetrated to the truth 
without knowing it. The reason that his fine analytical 
sense had led him to feel that "it may be fit to consider 
them rather as Historic than Dramatic beings" is the fact 
that in practically every instance where a very distinctive 
Shakespearean character, such as Falconbridge, Falstaff, 
Armado, Malvolio, and Fluellen, acts and speaks "from those 
parts of the composition, which are inferred only, and not 
distinctly shewn," the characters so apprehended may be 
shown by the light of contemporary social, literary, or 
political records to have been, in some measure, a reflection 
of a living model. Shakespeare had literally, in his own 
phrase, held "the mirror up to nature "; the reflection, how- 


ever, being heightened and vivified b F the infusion of his 
own rare sensibilitF, and the power of his dramatic genius. 
With ail his genius Shakespeare was Fet mortal, and 
human creativeness cannot transcend nature. What we call 
creativeness, even in the greatest artists, is but a fineness of 
sensibilit F and cognition, or rather recognition, coupled with 
the power to express what the F see and feel in nature. 
As a large number of Shakespeare's plaFs were written 
primaril F for private or Court presentation, to edif F or amuse 
his patron and his patron's friends, or with their immediate 
political or factional interests in mind to influence the Court 
in their favour, the shadowed purposes of such plays, the 
acting or speaking of a character "from those parts of the 
composition, which are inferred onlF, and hOt distincti F 
shewn," as well as a number of hitherto supposedl F inexplic- 
able asides and allusions, such as Bottom's "reason and 
love keep little compan F together nowadaFs ; the more the 
pitF, that some honest neighbours will not make them 
friends," would give to those acquaintances who were in 
Shakespeare's confidence an added zest and interest in 
such plaFs quite lacking to the uninitiated, or to a modern 
I propose in this chapter to demonstrate the facts that 
John Florio--the translator of 2Iontai«ne's Essays and tutor 
of languages to Shakespeare's patron, the Earl of South- 
ampton--was Shakespeare's original for Sir John Falstaff 
and other of his characters; that the Earl of Southampton 
and Lady Southampton were cognizant of the shadowed 
identity, and that Florio himself recognised and angrily 
resented the characterisation when a knowledge of its 
personal application had spread among their mutual 


In preceding chapters and in former books x I have 
advanced evidence of a cumulative nature for Southampton's 
identity as the patron addressed in the Sonnets ; the identity 
of Chapman as the "rival poet," and Shakespeare's caricature 
of him as Holofernes; the identity of Matthew Roydon as 
the author of Willobie ttis Avisa, as well as Shakespeare's 
caricature of him as the curate Nathaniel ; and the identity 
of Mistress Davenant as the "dark lady" of the Sonnets. 
If, then, we find in the same plays in which these personal 
reflections are shown a certain distinctly marked type of 
character, bearing stronger pma racle evidence than the 
others of having been developed from a living original, may 
we not reasonably infer that the individual so represented 
might also have been linked in life in some manner approxi- 
mating to his relations in the play, with the lives and 
interests of the other persons shadowed forth ? 
With this idea in mind I have searched ail available 
records relating to Southampton, in the hope of finding 
among his intimates an individual whose personality may 
have suggested Shakespeare's characterisation, or caricature, 
set forth in the successive persons of Armado, Parolles, 
and Sir John Falstaf£. The traceable incidents of John 
Florio's lire, his long and intimate association with Shake- 
speare's patron, and reasonable inferences for the periods 
where actual record of him is wanting, gave probability, in 
my judgment, to his identity as Shakespeare's original for 
these and other characters. A further consideration of the 
man's personality, temperament, and mental habitude, as 
I could dimly trace them in his few literary remains 
that afford scope for unconscious self-revelation, left no 
1 Shakespeare and the Rival Poet 9o 3 ; Mistress 19avenant, the 19ark Lady 
o[ Shake(peare' s Sonnets, 1913. 


doubt in my mind as to his identity as Shakespeare's 
Supposing it tobe impossible, with out present records, 
to visualise Shakespeare more definitely in his contemporary 
environment, it has been common with biographers, in their 
endeavours to link him with the men of his rimes, to draw 
imaginative pictures of his intimate and friendly personal 
relations with such men as Sir Walter Raleigh, Bacon, 
Chapman, Marston, and others, equally improbable, forgetting 
the social distinctions, the scholastic prejudices, and still 
more, the religious or political animositîes that divided men 
in public life in those days, as they do, though in a lesser 
degree, to-day. The intimate relations of the Earl of 
Southampton with Lord Burghley, during the earliest period 
of his Court lire, when he was affianced to Burghley's grand- 
daughter, and his later intimacy with the Earl of Essex and 
with the gentlemen of the Essex faction, coupled with 
Shakespeare's sympathy with the cause of his patron and 
his patron's friends, must be borne in mind in any endeavour 
that is made to trace in the plays either Shakespeare's 
political leanlngs or his probable affiliations with, or 
antagonisms to, his early contemporaries. The natural 
jealousies that would arise between the followers, dependants, 
or protégés of a liberal patron must also be considered. 
John Florio became connected, in the capacity of Italian 
tutor, with the Earl of Southampton late in the year x59o, 
or early in I59I, shortly after his coming to Court, and 
a little before Southampton first began to show favour 
to Shakespeare. We have Florio's own statement for the 
fact that he continued in Southampton's "pay and patron- 
age" at least as late as I598, in which year he published 
his Worlde of Vordes. Whether or not he continued in 


Southampton's service after this date is uncertain, but we 
may safely impute to that nobleman's good offices the 
favour shown to him by James I. and his Queen in 6o4, 
and later. 
From the first time that Shakespeare and Florio were 
thrown together, through their mutual connection with 
Southampton, in or about I59I, down to the year I6o9, 
when the Sonnets were issued at the instigation of Shake- 
spcare's literary rivals, I find intermittent traces ofantagonism 
between them, and also of Florio's intimacy and sympathy 
with Chapman and his friends. In later years, Chapman, 
Jonson, and Marston, however, seem to have recognised in 
Florio an unstable ally, and tacitly to have regarded him as 
a selfish and shifty opportunist. Florio appears to have 
used his intimacy with Southampton, and his knowledge of 
that nobleman's relations with Shakespeare and the "dark 
lady" in 1593 to 1594, to the poet's disavantage, by imparting 
intelligence of the affair to Chapman and Roydon, the latter 
of whom exploited this knowledge in the production of 
IVillobie his A visa. 
In Chapman's dedication to Roydon of The Shctctow o] 
2Vi£h! in 1594, he shows knowledge of the fact that Shake- 
speare was practically reader to the Earl of Southampton, 
and that he passed his judgment upon literary marrer sub- 
mitted to that nobleman. Referring to Shakespeare, Chap- 
man writes: " How then may a man stay his marvailing 
to see passion-driven men, reading but to curtail a tedious 
hour, and altogether hidebound with affection to great men's 
fancies, take upon them as killing censures as if they were 
judgment's butchers, or as if the life of truth lay tottering in 
their verdicts." This reference to Shakespeare as "passion- 
driven" refers to the affair of the "dark lady," upon which 


Chapman's friend, Roydon, was then at work in Willobie kis 
A visa. Florio, in later years, as shall appear, also makes a 
very distinct point at Shakespeare as a "reader." Unless 
there was an enemy in Shakespeare's camp to report to 
Chapman and Roydon the fact of his "reading" to curtail 
tedious hours for his patron, and to convey intelligence to 
Roydon of Shakespeare's and Southampton's relations with 
the "dark lady," either by reporting the affair or b¥ bringing 
Shakespeare's earlier MS. books of sonnets to his notice, it is 
improbable that these men would have had such intimate 
knowledge of the incidents and conditions of this stage of 
Shakespeare's friendship with his patron. Florio probably 
fostered the hostility of these scholars to Shakespeare by 
imputing to his influence their ill-success in winning South- 
ampton's favour. It is not improbable that for his own pro- 
tection he secretly used his influence with Southampton in 
defeating their advances while posing as their friend and 
champion. Shakespeare distrusted Florio from the begin- 
ning of his acquaintance, and deprecated his influence upon 
his patron. 
In the earlier stages of Shakespeare's observation of Florio 
he appears to have been more amused than angered, but as 
the years pass his dislike grows, as he sees more clearl¥ into 
the cold selfishness of a character, obscured to his earlier 
and more casual view by the interesting personality and 
frank and humorous worldly wisdom of the man. However 
heightened and amplified by Shakespeare's imagination the 
characterisation of Falstaff may now appear, a consideration 
of the actual character of Florio, as we find it revealed 
between the lines of his own literary productions, and in the 
few contemporar¥ records of him that have survived, suggests 
on Shakespeare's part portrayal rather than caricature. 


Assuming for the present that Shakespeare has character- 
ised, or caricatured, Florio as Parolles, Armado, and Falstaff, 
the first and second of these characters are represented in 
plays originally produced in, or about, I592, but reflecting 
the spirit and incidents of the Cowdray and Tichfield pro- 
gress of the autumn of I59. While these plays were altered 
at a later period, or periods, of revision, it is apparent that 
both characters pertain in a large measure to the plays in 
their earlier forms. If Shakespeare used Florio as his model 
for these characters, we have added evidence that by the 
autumn of 1591 Florio had already entered the "pay and 
patronage" of Southampton, who about this period, under 
his tuition and in anticipation of continental travel, developed 
his knowledge of Italian and French. In his dedication of the 
lVorlde of Vordes to Southampton in 1598, Florio writes : 

" In truth I acknowledge an entire debt, not only of my 
best knowledge, but of all, yea of more than I know or can, 
to your bounteous Lordship, most noble, most virtuous, and 
most Honourable Earl of Southampton, in whose pay and 
patronage I have lived some years, to whom I owe and vow 
the years I have to live." 

Further on in this dedication he refers to Southampton's 
study of Italian under his tuition as follows : 

"I might make doubt least I or mine be not now of any 
further use to your self-sufficiencie, being at home so instructed 
in Italian as teaching or learning could supply that there 
seemed no need of travell, and now by travell so accomplished 
as what wants to perfection ?" 

111's Well t]zat Ends Well, in its earlier form of Love's 
Labour's Von, reflects the spirit and incidents of the Queen's 
progress to Tichfield House in September 1591 ; the widowed 


Countess of Rousillon personifies the widowed Countess of 
Southampton; the wise and courtly Lafeu the courtly Sir 
Thomas Heneage, who within three years married the 
Countess of Southampton. I have suggested that Bertram 
represented Southampton, and that his coolness towards 
Helena, and his proposed departure for the French Court, 
reflects Southampton's disinclination to the marriage with 
Elizabeth Vere, and the fact of his departure shortly after- 
wards for France. In Florio, who was at that rime attached 
to the Earl of Southampton's establishment, and presumably 
was present upon the occasion of the progress to Tichfield, 
we have the prototype of Parolles, though much of the 
present characterisation of that person, while referring to 
the saine original, undoubtedly pertains to a period of later 
rime revision, which on good evidence I date in, or about, 
the autumn of I598, at which period Shakespeare's earlier 
antipathy had grown by knowledge and experience into 
positive aversion. 
In I59t Southampton was still a ward in Chancery, and 
the management of his personal affairs and expenditures 
under the supervision of Lord Burghley, to whose grand- 
daughter he was affianced. It is evident then that when 
Florio was retained in the capacity of tutor, or bear-leader, 
and with the intention of having him accompany the young 
Earl upon his continental travels, his selection for the post 
would be ruade by Burghley--Southampton's guardian-- 
who in former years had patronised and befriended Florio's 
In Lafeu's early distrust of Parolles' pretensions, and his 
eventual recognition of his cowardice and instability, I 
believe we have a reflection of the attitude of Sir Thomas 
Heneage towards Florio, and a suggestion of his disapproval 


of Florio's intimacy with Southampton. This leads me to 
infer that though Lady Southampton and Heneage appar- 
ently acquiesced in, and approved of, Burghley's marital 
plans for Southampton, secretly they were not displeased at 
their miscarriage. 
When Southampton first came to Court he was a fresh 
and unspoiled youth, with high ideals and utterly unacquainted 
with the ethical latitude and moral laxity of city and Court 
life. In bringing him to Court and the notice of the Queen, 
and at the saine time endeavouring to unite his interests 
with his own by marriage with his granddaughter, Burghley 
hoped that--as in the case of his son-in-law, the Earl of 
Oxford, some years before--Southampton would become a 
Court favourite, and possibly supplant Essex in the Queen's 
favour, as the Earl of Oxford had for a while threatened to 
displace Leicester. The ingenuous frankness and independ- 
ence of the young Earl, however, appeared likely to defeat 
the plans of the veteran politician. Burghley now resolved 
that he must broaden his protdgd's knowledge of the world 
and adjust his îdeals to Court lire. He accordingly engaged 
the sophisticated and world-bitten Florio as his intellectual 
and moral mentor. I do not find any record of Southampton's 
departure for France immediately after the Cowdray pro- 
gress, but it is apparent either that he accompanied the Earl 
of Essex upon that nobleman's return to his command in 
France after a short visit to England in October I59I , or 
that he followed shortly afterwards. Essex was recalled 
from France in January 1592 (new style), and on 2nd March 
of the same year we have a letter dated at Dieppe from 
Southampton to Essex in England, which shows that 
Southampton was with the army in France within a few 
months of the Cowdray progress. 


Conceiving both Parolles and Falstaff to be caricatures 
of Florio I apprehend in the military functions of these 
characters a reflection of a probable quasi-military experience 
of their original during his connection with Southampton 
in the year 1592. 
An English force held Dieppe for Henry IV. in March 
I592 , awaiting reinforcements from England to move 
against the army of the League, which was encamped near 
the town. If Southampton took Florio with him at this 
rime it is quite likely that he had him appointed to a 
captaincy, though probably hot to a command. Captain 
Roger Williams, a brave and capable Welsh officer (whom 
I have reason to believe was Shakespeare's original for the 
Welsh Captain Fluellen in I-emy V.), joined the army at the 
end of this month, bringing with him six hundred men. In 
a letter to the Council, upon his departure from England, 
he writes sarcastically of the number and inefficiency of the 
captains being ruade. This letter is so characteristic of the 
man, and so reminiscent of blunt Fluellen, that I shall quote 
it in full. 

"Moste Honorables, yesterdaie it was your Lordship's 
pleasure to shewe the roll of captaines by their names. 
More then hall of them are knowen unto me sufficient to 
take charges; a greate number of others, besides the rest 
in that roll, although not knowen unto me, maie be as 
sufficient as the others, perhapps l«lowen unto menn of farr 
better judgment than myselfe. To sale truthe, no man 
ought to meddle further than his owne charge. Touching 
the three captaines that your Lordships appointed to go 
with me, I knowe Polate and Coverd, but hot the thirde. 
There is one Captaine Polate, a Hampshire man, an honest 
gentleman, worthie of good charge. There is another hOt 
worthie to be a sergeant of a band, as Sir John Norris 


knows, with many others; and I do heare by my Lord 
of Sussex itis he. Captain Coverd is worthie, but not 
comparable unto a dozen others that have no charge; but 
whatsoever your Lordships direct unto me, I muste accept, 
and will do my best endeavour to discharge my dutie 
towards the service comitted unto me. But be assured that 
the more new captaines that are ruade, the more will begg, 
I meane will trouble her Majestie after the warrs, unless the 
olde be provided for. I must confess I wrote effectual for 
one Captaine Smithe unto Sir Philipp Butler; two of the 
name Sir John Norris will confess tobe well worthie to 
commande, at the least, three hundred men a-piece. He 
that I named, my desire is that he may be one of myne. 
I protest, on my poore credytt, I never delt with her Majestie 
concerning any of those captaines, nor anything that your 
Lordships spake yesterday before me; but true itis, I spake 
before the Èarle of Essex and Sir John Norris, it was pittie 
that young captaines should be accepted and the old refused. 
True it is that I toulde them also that the lieutenants of 
the shire knew not those captaines so well as ourselves. On 
my creditt, my meaning was the deputies lieutenants, the 
which, as it was toulde me, had ruade all these captaines. 
My speeches are no lawe, nor scarce good judgment, for the 
warrs were unknowen to me 22 yeres agon. Notwith- 
standing, it shall satisfie me, that the greatest generalls 
in that rime took me tobe a souldier, for the which I will 
bring better proofs than any other of my qualitie shall deny. 
Humbly desiring your Lordships' accustomed good favor 
towards me, I reste to spend my lire alwaies at her 
Majestie's pleasure, and at your Lordships' devotion. 
(27th March 159I.)" 

Within a short period of the arrival of Sir Roger Williams 
he had dispersed the enemy and opened up the road to the 
suburbs of Paris ; which city was then held by the combined 
forces of the League and the Spanish. I cannot learn 


whether Southampton accompanied the troops in the 
proposed attack on Paris or continued his travels into the 
Netherlands and Spain. Some verses in bVillobie his Avisa 
suggest such a tour at this rime. He was back in England, 
however, by September 1592, when he accompanied the 
Queen and Court to Oxford. It is probable that Florio 
accompanied the Earl of Southampton upon this occasion, 
and that the nobldman's acquaintance with the mistress 
of the Crosse Inn, the beginning of which I date at this 
rime, was due to his introduction. Florio lived for many 
years at Oxford and was undoubtedly familiar with its 
taverns and tavern keepers, x 
In depicting Parolles as playing Pander for Bertram, and 
at the same rime secretly pressing his own suit, I ara con- 
vinced that Shakespeare caricatured Florio's relations with 
Southampton and the "dark lady." It is not unlikel¥ that 
Florio is included by Roydon in Willobie his Avisa among 
Avisa's numerous suitors. 
The literary history of All's Well that Ends fVell, aside 
from internal considerations, suggests that it was hot com- 
posed originally for public performance, nor revised with the 
public in mind. It appeared in print for the first time in 
the Folio of 1623, and it is practically certain that no earlier 
edition was issued. If we except Meres' mention of the 
play, Love's Labour's bVon, in I598, the earliest reference 
we have to All's Wdl tiret Iinds fVell is that in the 
Stationers' Registers dated 8th November I623, where it 
is recorded as a play not previously entered to other men. 
 While eorreeting proof sheets for this book I have round evidence hat Flofio 
was living in Oxford, and already married in September I585. The Register of 
St. Peter's in the Baylie in Oxford records the baptism of Joane Florio, daughter 
of John Florio, upon the 24th of September in that year. Wood's Ci O, of 
Oxford, vol. iii. p. 58. Ed. by Andrew Clark. 


There is no record of its presentation during Shakespeare's 
Though the old play of Love's Lalour's l/Von mentioned 
by Meres has been variously identified by critics, the 
consensus of judgment of the majority is in favour of its 
identification as All's IV«ll tkat Ends Well. In no other 
of Shakespeare's plays--even in instances where we have 
actual record of revision--can we so plainly recognise by 
internal evidence both the work of his "pupil" and of his 
master pen. As I have assigned the original composition 
of this play to the year 592, regarding it as a reflection 
of the Queen's progress to Tichfield House and of the 
incidents of the Earl of Southampton's life at, and following, 
that period, so I infer and believe I can demonstrate that 
its revision reflects the same personal influences under new 
phases in later years. 
In February 598 the Earl of Southampton left England 
for the French Court with Sir Robert Cecil. He returned 
secretly in August and was married privately at Essex 
House to Elizabeth Vernon, whose condition had recently 
caused her dismissal from the Court. Southampton re- 
turned to France as secretly as he had corne, but knowledge 
of his return and of his unauthorised marriage reaching the 
Queen, she issued an order for his immediate recall, and 
upon his return in November committed him, and even 
threatened to commit his wife (who was now a mother), to the 
Fleet. It is not unlikelythat Florio accompanied Southamp- 
ton to France upon this visit, and that much of Shakespeare's 
irritation at this rime arose from Southampton's neglect 
or coolness, which he supposed to be due to Florio's increas- 
ing influence, to which Shakespeare also imputed much of 
the young Erl's ill-regulated manner of life at this period. 


In the happy ending of Helena's troubles, aud in 
Bertram's recognition of his moral responsibility and marital 
obligations, and also in the significant change of the title 
of this play from Love's Labour's Won to All's Vell that 
Ends Wdl, we have Shakespeare's combined reproof and 
approval of Southampton's recent conduct towards Elizabeth 
Vernon, as well as a practical reflection of the actual facts 
in their case. 
At about this rime, in addition to the revision of All's 
lVell t/cM Ends lVell, I date the first production, though 
hot the original composition, of Troilus and Crcssida, and also 
the final revision of Love's Labour's Lost. In this latter play 
the part taken by Armado was, I believe, enlarged and revised, 
as in the case of Parolles in All's Wdl that Ends lVdl, to suit 
the incidents and characterisation to Shakespeare's developed 
knowledge of, and experience with, Florio. There are several 
small but significant links of description between the Parolles 
of 1598 and the enlarged Armado of the saine date. Both of 
these characters are represented as braggart soldiers and also 
as linguists, which evidently reflect Florio's quasi-military 
connection with Southampton and his known proficiency 
in languages. 
In Act Iv. Scene iii. Parolles is referred to as "the manifold 
linguist and armipotent soldier." In Love's Labour's Lost, 
in Act I. Scene i., in lines that palpably belong to the play in 
its earliest form, Armado is described as "a man of tire- 
new words." He is also represented as a traveller from 
Spain. In Act v. Scene il., in lines that pertain to the revision 
of 1598, he is ruade to take the soldier's part again, in giving 
him the character of Hector in The iVine Worthies. In this 
character Armado is ruade to use the peculiar word "armi- 
potent" twice. It is significant that this word is never used 


by Shakespeare except in connection with Armado and 
Parolles. In giving Armado the character of Hector, I ara 
convinced that Shakespeare again indicates Florio's military 
experience. In the lines which Armado recites in the 
character of Hector, Shakespeare intentionally makes his 
personal point at Florio more strongIy indicative by allud- 
ing to the naine Florio by the word "flower," in the inter- 
rupted line with which Hector ends his verses. 

ARM. Peace 
"The armipotent Mars, of lances the aimighty, 
Gave Heetor a gift, the heir of Ilion ; 
A man so breathed, that certain he would fight ye 
From morn till night, out of his pavillon. 
I ara that flower,----" 
l le reinforces his indication by Dumain's and Longaville's 
interpolations--" That mint," "That columbine." Florio 
undoubtedly indicated this meaning to his own naine in 
entitling his earliest publication First Fruites and a later 
publication Second Fruites. In a sonnet addressed to him 
by some friend of his who signs himself "Ignoto," his naine 
is also referred to in this sense. In his Italian-English 
dictionary, published in I598, he does not include the word 
Florio. In the edition of I6It, however, he includes it, but 
states that it means, "A kind of bird." In using the word 
"columbine" Shakespeare gives the double meaning of a 
flower and also a bird. Florio used a flower for his emblem, 
and had inscribed under his portrait in the I6I edition of 
his Worlde of kVordes : 

'« Floret adhuc et adhuc florebit 
Florius haec specie floridus optat amans." 

The frequent references to the characters of the Iliad 
in this act and scene of I.ove's Labour's I.ost link the period 


of its insertion with the date of the original composition 
of Troils and Cressida in, or about, 1598, to which rime I 
bave also assigned the revision of Zove's Zabour's Won into 
All's Well that Ends Well, and the development of Parolles 
into a misleader of youth. 
Another phase of Act v. Scene il. of Zove's Zabougs Zost 
appears to be a reflection of an affair in the lire of the 
individual whom Shakespeare bas in mind in the delineation 
of the characters of Armado and Sir John Falstaff. Costard 
accuses Armado regarding his relations with Jaquenetta. 
COST. The party is gone, fellow Heetor, she is gone ; she is two months on 
ber way. 
ARM. What meanest thou ? 
COST. Faith, unless ),ou play the honest Trojan, the poor weneh is cast 
away : she's quick ; the child brags in ber belly already : 'ris yours. 
AIM. Dost thou infamonize me among potentates ? 
Precisely similar conditions are shown to exist in the 
relations between Falstaffand Doll Tearsheet, in the Second 
Part of Hen I V., in which play there are also allusions to 
the characters of the Iliad, which link its composition with 
the saine period as Troilus and Cressida; and an allusion to 
The Nine IVorthies that apparently link it in rime with the 
final revision of Zove's Zaour's Zost late in 1598. 

Enter ]BADLES dragging in I-osless QUICKLXt and DOLL TIARSHEET. 
HOST. NO, thou arrant knave; I would to God that I might bave thee 
hanged : thou hast drawn my shoulder out of joint. 
FIRST ]IAD. The eonstables have delivered her over to me : and she 
shall have whipping-eheer enough I warrant ber : there hath been a man or two 
lately killed about her. 
DOL. Nut-hook, nut-hook, you lie. Corne on ; Fil tell thee what, thou 
damned tripe-visaged raseal, and the ehild I now go with misearry, thou wert 
better thou hadst struek thy mother, thou paper-faeed villain. 
HOST. O the Lord, that Sir John were eome ! he would make this a bloody 
day to somebody. But I pray God the fruit of her womb miscarry. 


The natural sequel to the conditions so plainly indicated 
in the passages quoted from the lately revised Love's Labour's 
Lost, regarding Jaquenetta and Armado, and from the 
recently written Henry IV. in reference to Doll Tearsheet 
and Falstaff, is reported in due time in a postscript to a letter 
written by Eizabeth Vernon, now Lady Southampton, on 
8th July 1599, to her husband, who was in Ireland with 
Essex. She writes from Chartley: 

"All the nues I can send you that I thinke will make you 
mery is that I reade in a letter from London that Sir John 
Falstaff is by his Mistress Dame l'intpot ruade father of a 
godly millers rhum a boye thats all heade and very litel 
body: but this is a secret." 

Here we have record that Shakespeare's patron, and his 
patron's wife, knew that Falstaff had a living prototype 
who was numbered among their acquaintances. That the 
birth of this child was not in wedlock is suggested by the 
concluding words of the Countess's letter "but this is a 
The identification of Florio as the original caricatured as 
l'arolles and Falstaff has never been anticipated, though 
some critics bave noticed the basic resemblances between 
these two characters of Shakespeare's. Parolles has been 
called by Schlegel, "the little appendix to the great Falstaff." 
A few slight links in the names of characters have led 
some commentators to date a revision of All's llZll l]al Ends 
IVell at about the same time as that of the composition of 
2V[easure for 2V[easure and Hamlet. While the links of 
subjective evidence I have adduced for one revision in, or 
about, the autumn of 1598, and at the saine period as that 
of the composition of the Second Part of lenr.j, llZ., of the 


final revision of Love's Labour's Lost, and shortly ai'ter the 
production of Troilus and Cressida, in I598, are fairly con- 
clusive, a consideration of the characterisation of Falstaffin 
the First Part of Henry I z. and of the evidence usually 
advanced for the date of the composition of this play will 
elucidate this idea. 
The First Part of t]eny I . in its present form belongs 
to a period shortly preceding thc date of its entry in the 
Stationers' Registers, in February I598. I am convinced 
that it was published at this rime with Shakespeare's 
cognizance, and that he revised it with this intention in 
mind. All inference and evidence assign the composition 
of the Second Part of I-Zenry l . to some part of the year 
I598. It is unlikely, however, that it was included in Meres' 
mention of I-Zenry I: in his Palladis Tamia, which was 
entered on the Stationers' Registers in September of that 
year. If the link between Doll Tearsheet's condition and 
the similar affair reported in Lady Southampton's letter in 
July 1599 be connected in intention with the same con- 
ditions reflected in the case of Armado and Jaquenetta, its 
date of production is palpably indicated, as is also the final 
revision of Love's Labou/s Lost in about December I598. 
Both of these plays were probably presented--the Second 
Part of I-Zen 7 Il/'. for the first rime, and Love's Labour's 
Lost for the first rime in its final form--for the Christmas 
festivities at Court, in 1598. While the Quarto of Love's 
Labour's Lost is dated as published in 1598, there is no 
record of its intended publication in the Stationers' Registers. 
It must be remembered, however, that all publications issued 
previous to the 25th of Match 1599 would be dated 1598. 
A comparison of the two parts of t]cnly II .z. under the 
metrical test, while clearly showing Pa't L as an earlier 


composition, yet approximates their dates so closely in time 
as to suggest a comparatively recent and thorough revision 
of the earlier portion of the play in x 597 or 1598. It is plain, 
however, that Shakespeare's ttenry IV., _Part L, held the 
boards in some form for several years before this date. The 
numerous contemporary references, under the name of Sir 
John Oldcastle, to the character now known as Falstaff, 
evidences on the part of the public such a settled familiarity 
with this same character, under the old name, as to suggest 
frequent presentations of Shakespeare's play in the earlier 
form. The Oldcastle of The Famous Victories of tte»ry V. 
has no connection whatever with the characterisation of 
Though the metrical evidences of so early a date are 
now obscured bi' the drastic revision of the autumn of 
1597, or spring of 1598, I am of the opinion that Item7 IV., 
Part L, as it was originally written, belongs to a period 
antedating the publication of Willobie kis Avisa in 1594, 
and that it was composed late in 1593 , or early in 1594 . 
I ara led to this conclusion by the underlying thread of 
subjective evidence linking the plays of this period with 
the affairs of Southampton and his connections. It is 
unlikely that Shakespeare would introduce that "sweet 
wench" mi' "Young Mistress of the Tavern" into a play 
after the publication of the scandal intended by Roydon 
in 1594, and probable that he altered the characterisation 
of the hostess to the old and widoved Mistress Quickly 
in the Second Part ofttenry IV. for this reason. 
Believing that Lovds Laboures Wonqi.e. All's Well that 
Ends Well in its earlier form--reflects Southampton in 
the person of Bertram, and Florio as Parolles, I have 
suggested that the military capacity of the latter character 


infers a temporary military experience of Florio's in the 
year 1592. It is evident that most of the marrer in this 
play following Act IV. Scene iii. belongs to the period of 
revision in I598. In Act IV. Scene iii. we bave what was 
apparently Parolles' final appearance in the old play of 
I592; here he has been exposed, and his purpose in the 
play ended. 
FIRST SOLDIiR. Vou are undone» Captain» ail but your scarf; that has 
a knot on't yet. 
PAROLLES. V/-ho cannot be crushed with a plot ? 
FIRST SOLDIER. If you could find out a country where women were 
that had received so much shame, you might begin an impudent nation. Fare 
ye well, Sir ; I am for France too ; we shall speak of you there. 
[ Exit SoMiers. 
PAROLLES. Yet am I thankful : if my heart were great, 
'Twould burst at this. Captain, l'Il be no more  
But I will eat and drink, and sleep as sort 
As captain shall : simply the thing I am 
Shall make me live. Who knows himself a braggart, 
Let him fear this, for it will corne to pass 
That every braggart shall be round an ass. 
Rust sword! cool blushes! and, l'arolles, live 
Safest in shame, being fool'd, by foolery thrive. 
There's place and means for every man alive. 
l'Il after them. 

[ Exit. 

The resolution he 
still greater moral deterioration. 
in shame; to thrive by foolery; 
his captaincy, to 
" eat and drink, and sleep as soft as captain shall." 
When Shakespeare resumed his plan of reflecting Florio's 
association with Southampton, in the I;irst Part of Henry IU. 
he recalled the state of mind and morals in which he had 
left him as Parolles in Love's Labour's lVon, and allowing 
for a short lapse of rime, and the effects of the lire he had 

here forms augurs for the future a 
He resolves to seek safety 
and, though fallen from 


resolved to live, introduces him in Henry IU., l'art I. 
Act I. Scene il., as follows: 

FAL. Now, Hal, what time of da), is it, lad ? 
PRINCE. Thou art so fat-witted, with drinking of old sack and unbuttoning 
thee after supper and sleeping upon benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten 
to demanà that truly which thou woulà'st truly know. What a devil hast thou 
to ào with the rime of the day ? Unless hours were cups of sack, and minutes 
capons, and clocks the tongues of bawds, and dials the signs of leaping-houses, 
and the blessed sun himself a fait hot wench in flame-coloured taffeta, I see no 
reason why thou should'st be so superfluous to demand the rime of day. 

In Parolles and Falstaff we have displayed the same 
lack of moral consciousness, the saine grossly sensuous 
materialism, and withal, the saine unquenchable optimism 
and colossal impudence. 
When we remember that though Shakespeare based his 
play upon the old Famous Uictories of I-Ienry U. and took 
fi'om it the name Oldcastle, that the actual characterisation 
of his Oldcastle--Falstaff--has no prototype in the original, 
the abrupt first entry upon the scene of this tavern-lounger 
and afternoon sleeper-upon-benches, as familiarly addressing 
the heir apparent as " ttal" and "lad," supplies a good in- 
stance of Shakespeare's method--noticed by Maurice Morgann 
--of making a character act and speak fi'om those 2arts of the 
composition which are inferred only and hot distinctly shown ; 
but to the initiated, including Southampton and his friends, 
who knew the bumptious self-sufficiency of Shakespeare's 
living model, and who followed the developing characterisa- 
tion from play to play, the effect of such bold dramatic 
strokes must have been irresistibly diverting. 
It is difficult now to realise the avidity with which such 
publications as Florio's First and Second Fruites were 
welcomed from the press and read by the cultured, or 
culture-seeking, public of his day. Italy being then regarded 


as the centre of culture and fashion a colloquial knowledge 
of Italian was a fashionable necessity. A reference in a 
current play to an aphorism of Florio's or to a characteristic 
passage from the proverbial philosophy of which he 
constructs his Italian-English conversations, which would 
pass unnoticed now, would be readily recognised by a 
fashionable Elizabethan audience. 
When Shakespeare, through the utterances of the prince, 
characterises Falstaff by suggestion upon his first appearance 
in the play in the following lines: 
"Thou art so fat-witted, with drinking of old sack and unbuttoning thee 
after supper and sleeping upon benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten 
to demand that truly which thou would'st truly know," 
for the benefit of his initiated friends he links up and 
continues Florio's characterisation as Parolles and Falstaff, 
and in the remainder of the passage, 
" What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the day? Unless hours 
are cups of sack» and minutes capons, and clocks the tongues of bawds, and 
dials the signs of leaping-houses, and the blessed sun himself a fair hot wench 
in flame-coloured taffeta," 
suggests Florio's character from his own utterances in the 
Second Fruites, where one of the characters holds forth as 
follows : 
"As for me, I never will be able, nor am I able, to be willing but to 
love whatsoever pleaseth women, to whom I dedicate, yield, and consecrate 
what mortal thing soever I possess, and I say, that a salad, a woman and a 
capon, as yet was never out of season." 
A consideration of certain of the divergences between 
the dmmatis personw of the First Pa't of Iemy IV. and 
the Second Part of Hem 7 I U., made in the light of the 
thread of subjective evidence in the plays of the Sonnet 
perle)d, may give us some new clues in determinilg the 
relative periods of their original composition. 


In the First Part of Henry IV. the hostess of the tavern 
is referred to as a young and beautiful woman in Act I. 
Scene ii., as follows: 





• . . And is hOt my hostess of the tavern a most sweet wench ? 
As the honey of Itybla, my old lad of the castle. 
And is hot a buffjerkin a most sweet robe of durance ? 
How now, how now, mad wag ! what, in thy quips and quiddities ? 
What a plague have I to do with a buffjerkin ? 
Why, what a pox bave I to do with my hostess of the tavern ? 
Well, thou hast called her to a reckoning many a rime and off. 
Did I ever call for thee to pay thy part ? 
No, l'Il give thee thy due, thou hast paid ail there. 
Ves, and elsewhere, so far as my coin would stretch ; and where it 
would hot, I have used my credit. 
Vea, and so used it that, were it hot here apparent that thou art 
heir apparent--but, I prithee, sweet wag, shall there be 
gallows standing in England when thou art king? And 
resolution thus fobbed as it is with the rusty curb of old father 
antic the law ? Do hot thou, when thou art king, hang a 

Falstaff's impertinent and suggestive reference to the 
prince's intimacy with the hostess, not being taken well, he 
quickly gives the conversation a turn to cover up the mis- 
take he finds he has ruade. It is palpable that the character- 
isation of the hostess in the First Part of Hen 7 IV., in its 
original form, was not the same as that presented in the 
Second Part of this play in which she is represented as 
Mistress Quickly, an old, unattractive, and garrulous widow. 
In the First Part of Hnry IV. she is mentioned only once 
as Mistress Quickly. In Act m. Scene iii. the prince 
addresses her under this name and inquires about her 

PRINCE. What sayest thou, Mistress Quickly ? How doth thy husband ? I 
love him well ; he is an honest man. 

This single mention of the hostess as Mistress Quickly 
is evidently an interpolation ruade at the period of the 


revision of this play late in 1597, or early in 1598. It is also 
probable that the revision at this rime was made with the 
intention of linking the action of the First Part to the 
Second Part of the play, the outline of which Shakespeare 
was probably planning at that rime. 
The dramatic time of the First Part of the play has been 
estimated as at the outside covering a period of three months, 
and of the Second Part, a period of two months. No long 
interval is supposed to have elapsed between the action of 
the two parts ; yet, in the First Part of the play the hostess 
is young, attractive, and has a husband. In the Second Part, 
she is old, unattractive, and is a widow. This divergence 
is evidently to be accounted for by the fact that the trirst 
Part of Henry 1V. in its earliest, and unrevised, form was 
written, not long after the composition of Love's Labour's 
IVon (All's Well that Ends IVell in its early form), and 
during the estrangement between Southampton and Shake- 
speare in I594, caused by the nobleman's relations with the 
"dark lady," that "most sweet wench," "my hostess of the 
I have indicated a certain continuity and link of character- 
isation between Parolles, as we leave him in All' Well that 
Ends Well, and Falstaff, as we first encounter him in the 
First Part of Hnry IV. I shall now demonstrate parallels 
between the characterisation of Falstaff in the trirst Part of 
Henry 1V., and the tone and spirit of the conversations 
between the imaginary characters of Florio's Second Fruites. 
Fewer resemblances are to be found between the Second 
Fruites and the Second Part of Iteny IV. From this I 
infer that when Shakespeare composed the First Part of 
Henry IV. in its original form, his personal acquaintance 
with Florio was recent and limited, and that he developed 


his characterisation of Falstaff in that portion of the play 
largely from Florio's self-revelation in the Second Fruitcs, 
and that in continuing this characterisation later on, in 
the Secend -pa't of the play, he reinforced it from a 
closer personal observation of the idiosyncrasies of his 
The Earl of Southampton, who was shadowed forth as 
Bertram in Love's La3eur's Wen, with Parolles as his factotum, 
--representing Florio in that capacity,--becomes the prince 
in Henry Il/'., while Florio becomes Falstaff. The First 
_Part of the play in its original form reflected their connection 
and thd affair of the "dark lady" in 1593-94. The t;irst 
_Part oflenry IV., in its revised form, and the S'ecend _Part 
af Hem 7 IV. reflect a resumed, or a continued, familiarity 
bctween Southampton and Florio in I598. This leads me to 
infer that Florio may again have accompanied Southampton 
when he left England with Sir Robert Cecil for the French 
Court in February 1598 , in much the saine capacity as he 
had served him on his first visit to France in 1592, when 
they were first reflected as Bertram and Parolles. 
In the original development of the characterisation of 
Parolles, Armado, and Falstaff, I am convinced that Shake- 
speare worked, hot only from observation of his prototype 
in their daily intercourse, but that he also studied Florio's 
mental and moral angles and literary mannerisms in his 
extant productions. If Armado's letters to Jaquenetta and 
to the King be compared with Florio's dedication of his 
Second Fruiteswwhich was published in 1591, several months 
preceding the original composition of Leve's Labaur's Lest-- 
and also with his "_Address to the Reader," a similitude will 
be found that certainly passes coincidence.  comparison 
of Parolles' and Falstaff's opportunist and materialistic 


philosophy with Florio's outlook on life as we find it 
unconsciously exhibited in his Second Fruites, reveals a 
characteristic unity that plainly displays intentional parody 
on Shakespeare's part. 
Didactic literature seldom presents the real character and 
workaday opinions and beliefs of a writer. The teacher 
generally speaks from a height transcending his ordinary 
levels of thought and action. In Florio's Second Fruites his 
intention is didactic only in relation to imparting a colloquial 
knowledge of Italian. In this endeavour he arranges a 
series of twelve conversations on matters of everyday life 
between imaginary characters, who are, presumably, of 
about the saine social quality as his usual pupils--the 
younger gentry of the time. In these talks his intention 
was to be entirely natural and to reproduce, what he con- 
ceived to be, ordinary conversation between gentlemen of 
fashion. In doing this he reveals ethics, manners, and 
morals of a decidedly Falstaffian flavour. The gross and 
satyr-like estimate of women he displays ; his primping enjoy- 
ment of apparel ; the gusto with which he converses of things 
to eat and drink--of aie, and wine, and capons ; his distrust 
of the minions of the law; his knowledge and horror of 
arrest and imprisonment, and his frankly animal zest of life, 
ail suggest Shakespeare's knowledge of the book as well as 
the man. 
As Florio's Second Fruites is not easily accessible to the 
general reader, a few extracts may serve to exhibit the 
characteristic resemblances to Shakespeare's delineation of 
The twelve chapters of the work are headed as follows : 
The first chapter, "Of rising in the morning and of things 
belonging to the chamber and to apparel." 


The second, "For common speech in the morning between 
friends; wherein is described a set of tennis." 
The third, "Of familiar morning communication ; wherein 
many courtesies are handled, and the manner of visiting and 
saluting the sick, and of riding, with ail that belongeth to a 
The fourth chapter, "Wherein is set down a dinner for 
six persons, between whom there fall many pleasant discourses 
concerning meat and repast." 
The fifth, "Wherein discourse is held of play and many 
things thereto appertaining, a gaine of primero and of chess." 
The sixth chapter, "Concerning many familiar and 
ceremonious compliments among six gentlemen who talk of 
many pleasant matters, but especially of divers necessary, 
profitable, civil, and proverbial receipts for a traveller." 
The seventh, "Between two gentlemen who talk of arms, 
and of the art of fencing, and of buying and selling." 
The eighth chapter, "Between James, and Lippa, his man, 
wherein they talk of many pleasant and delightsome jests, 
and in itis described an unpleasant lodging, an illformed old 
woman, also the beautiful parts that a woman ought to have 
tobe accounted fait in all perfection, and pleasantly blazoned 
a counterfeit lazy and naught-worth servant." 
The ninth, "Between Coezar and Tiberio; wherein they 
discourse of news of the Court, of courtiers of this day, and 
of many other matters of delight." 
The tenth chapter, "Between gentlemen and a servant; 
wherein they talk of going to supper, and familiar speech late 
in the evening." 
The eleventh, "Wherein they talk of going to bed, and 
many things thereto belonging." 
The twelfth, "Wherein proverbially and pleasantly dis- 
course is held of love and women." 

He makes one of his characters end this last chapter as 
follows : 


"As for me, I never will be able, nor am I able, to be 
willing but to love whatsoever pleaseth women, to whom 
I dedicate, yield, and consecrate what mortal thing soever I 
possess, and I say, that a salad, a woman, and a capon as yet 
was never out of season." 

The remarkable resemblance between the sentiments here 
expressed and the characteristics attributed to Falstaff by 
Prince Henry in the passage quoted above from Henry IV., 
suggest Shakespeare's knowledge of the 

the wardrobe of a man of fashion with 
giving a minute inventory of his shirts, 
ruffs, cuffs, towels, quoises, shoes, buskins, 
daggers, swords, gloves, doublets, jerkins, gowns, hats, caps, 
and boots. The very superabundance recalling, by contrast, 
the paucity in this regard in the cases of Armado and 
The philosophy of his conversations is selfish and worldly- 
wise to a degree, with nowhere the slightest suggestion of 
ideality or altruism. 
"T. From those that I do trust, good Lord deliver me, from such as 1 
mistrust, l'Il harmless come to be. 
G. He gives me so many good words I cannot rail but trust him. 
T. Wot you not that fait words and foui deeds are wont to make both fools 
and wise men faim 
G. I know it, but if he beat me with a sword, I will beat him again with a 
T. What, will you give him bread for cake then ? 
G. If any man wrong thee, wrong him again, or else be sure to remember it." 
In the conversation concerning meats and repast he is 
Gargantuan in his descriptions. 
"S. The meat is coming in, let us set down. 
C. I would wash first if it were not to trouble Robert. 
S. What, ho ! Bring some water to wash our hands. 
ROBIRT. Here itis fresh and good to drinke for a neede. 

Act I. Scene ii., 
Second Fruites. 
He describes 
envious unction, 


H. God hath made water for other things than to drinke. 
C. Hast thou hot heard that water rots, hOt only men, but stakes ? 
R. Ver men say that water was made to drinke, to saile, and to wash. 
M. It was good to drinke when men did eat acornes. 
T I pray ),ou set down for I bave a good'stomach. 
N. As for a good stomach, I do yield a jot unto you. 
S. My masters, the meat cooles. 
S. My masters, sit down ; every man take his place. 
N. Tush, I pray you, sit down. 
C. With obliging ),ou I shall show myself unmannetly. 
H. Of courtesie, Master M., sit here between us two. 
M. Virtue consists in the midst quothe the devil when he found himself 
between two nuns. 
S. Bring hither that salad, those steaks, that leg of mutton, that piece of beef 
with ail the boiled meats we have. 
S. I pray ),ou, every man serve himself, let everyone cut where he please, 
and seek the best morsels. 
N. Truly these meats are very well seasoned. 
S. Call for drinke when you please, and what kind of wine ),ou like best. 
N. Give me some wine but put some water in it. 
S. Vou may well enough drinke it pure, for out wines are all borne under the 
sign of Aquatius. 
M. Do you hOt know that wine watered is esteemed a vile thing ? 
C. Give me a cup of beere, or else a bowl of ale. 
S. I ptay )'ou, do hOt put that sodden water into your bellie. 
C. I like it as well as wine, chiefly this hot weather. 
T. He that drinks wine drinks blood, he that drinks water drinks fleame 
H. I love to drink wine after the Dutch fashion. 
T. How do they drinke it, I pray you ? 
H. In the morning, pure ; at dinner, without water, and at night as it cornes 
from the vessel. 
M. I like this rule ; they are wise, and God's blessing light upon them. 
H. A slice of bacon would make us taste this wine well. 
S. What, ho ! set that gammon of bacon on the board. 
1V. God be'thanked,  am ata truce with'my stoma'ch. " " 
T. In faith, I would stay until the bells do ring. 
S. You were not fasting then when you came here ? 
M. I had only drunk a little Malmslie. 
T. And I a good draught of Muscatine, and eat a little bread. 
S. Bring the meat away, in God's name. 
R. The meat is not enough yet. 


S. Take away that empty pot, set some bread upon the table and put some 
sait in the sait cellar, and make roome for the second messe. 
R. Now, cornes the toast. 
S. Welcome may with his flowers. 
T. And good speed may out barke have. 
S. The Jews do hOt look for their BIessias with more devotion than I have 
looked for the toast meat. 
S. Set that capon upon the table, and those chickens, those rabbits, and that 
hen, that goose ; those woodcock, those snipes, those larks, those quails, those 
partridges, those pheasants and that pasty of venison. 
R. Hem is everything ready. 
N. Vou bave led us to a wedding. 
S. I pray you, cut up that hen, I pray God it be tender. 
C. Alas, I think she was dam to the cock that crowed to St. Peter. 
S. I thought that so soon as I saw her. 
N. I beseech you, sir, will you carve some of that pheasant i' 
M. They be offices that I love to do. 
N. I will one day fill my bellie full of them. 
S. Master Andrew, will it please you to eat an egg ? 
A. With ail my heart, sir, so be it new laid. 
S. As new as may be ; laid this morning. 
A. I love new-laid eggs well. 
S. Sirra, go cause a couple of eggs tobe ruade readie. 
R. By and by, will you have them hard or sort ? 
A. It is no matter, I love them better raire. 
T. An egg of an hour, bread of a day, kidd of a month, wine of six, flesh of 
a year, fish of ten, a woman of fifteen, and a friend of a hundred, he must have 
that will be inertie. 
S. What aileth Master T. that he looks so sad ? 
T. I ara hot very well at ease. 
S. What feel you, where grieves it you ? 
T, I feel my stomach a little over-cloyde. 
5I. Shall I teach you a good medicine ? 
H. My mother, of happy memorie, was wont to tell me that a pill of wheat, 
of a hen the days work sweat, and some vine juice that were neat was best 
physick I could eat. 
M. Vour mother was a woman worthy to govern a kingdom. 
S. My masters, you see here the period of this poor dinner ; the best dish 
you have had hath been your welcome. 
H. As that hath fed out minds so bave the others fed our bodies well. 
S. It grieves me that you bave been put to such penance, but yet I hope you 
will excuse me. 


C. If doing such penance a man might win heaven, O sweet penance for a 
man to do every day." 

Portions of the sixth chapter, with its talk of divers 
nccessary prophetic and provcrbial preccpts for a travcller, 
evidently supplied Shakespeare with the hint for Scene iv. 
Act II. of the First Part of Henry I U., between Falstaff 
and Prince Hal, wherein Falstaff personates the prince's 

"S. Mister Peeter, whatsoever I shall tell you according to my wonted 
manner, I will speak as plainly unto you as though you were my son, and there- 
ri»re pardon me, if I shall seem eyther too familiar, or too homely with you. 
P. Say on boldly, for I shail be very proud if it please you to account me as 
your child, and that I may repute you as my father. 
S. First, my loving Mister Peeter, if you purpose to corne unto the wished 
end of your travel, have always your mind and thought on God." 

This highly moral preamble is followed by much ungodly, 
worldly wisdom. 

" S. And if you will be a traveller and wander safely through the world, 
wheresoever you corne bave always the eyes of a falcon that you may see far, 
the ears of an ass that you may hear well, the face of an ape that you may be 
ready to laugh, the mouth of a hog to eat ail things, the shoulder of a cam¢l that 
you may bear anything with patience, the legs of a stag that you may flee from 
dangers, and see that you never want two bags very full ; that is, one of patience, 
for with it a man overcomes ail things, and another of money, for, 
They that have good store of crownes, 
Are called lordes, though they be clownes ; 
and gold hath the very same virtue that charity hath, it covereth a multitude of 
faults, and golden hammers break ail locks, and golden meedes do reach ail 
heights, have always your hand on your hat, and in your purse, for, 
A purse or cap used more or less a year 
Gain many friends, and do not cost thee dear. 
Travelling by the way in winter time, honour your companion, so shall 
you avoid falling into dangerous places. In summer go before, so shall hot the 
dust corne into your eyes. Setting at board, if there be but little bread, hold it 
fast in your hand, if small store of flesh, take hold on the bone, if no store of 
wine, drink often, and unless you be required, never offer any man either 
sait, etc." 


The ninth chapter, wherein they "plausibly discourse of 
news of the Court and of courtiers of this day, and of many 
other rnatters of delight," is full of Falstaffian paradox, and re- 
miniscent of Justice Shallow's relations with Jane Nightwork. 
"C. What is become ofyour neighbour, I mean the old doating man grown 
twice a child ? 
T..As old as you see him he bas of late wedded a young wench of fifteen 
years old. 
C. Then he and she will make up the whole bible together ; I mean the old 
and new testament. 
T. To an old cat a young mouse. 
C. Old flesh makes good broth. 
T. What has become of his son that I see him not ? 
C. He was put in prison for having beatcn an enemy of his. 
T. Be wrong or right prison is a spite. 
C. A man had need look to himself in this world. 
T. What is become of his fait daughter whom he manied to what you call 
him that was sometime out neighbour ? 
C. She spins crooked spindles for her husband and sends him into Cornwall 
without ship or boat. 
T. What, does she make him wear the stag's crest then ? 
C. You have guessed right and have hit the nail on the head. 
T. His blood is of great force and virtue then. 
C. What virtue can his blood have, tell me in good faith ? 
T. It is good to break diamonds withal. 
C. Why, man's blood cannot break diamonds. 
T. Yes, but the blood of a he-goat will. 
C. Moreover, he may challenge to have part in heaven by it. 
T. What matter is it for him then to be a he-goat, or a stmnpbuck, or a 
kid, or a chamois, a stag, or a brill, a unicorn, or an elephant so he may be sale, 
but how may that be, I pray thee, tell me ? 
C. I will tell thee, do not you know that whosoever is ruade a cuckold by his 
wife, either he knows it, or he knows it not. 
T. That I know, then what will you infer upon it ? 
C. If he knows it he must needs be patient, and therefote a martyr, if he 
knows it not, he is innocent, and you know that martyrs and innocents shall be 
saved, which if you grant, it followeth that all cuckolds shall obtain paradise. 
T. Methinks then that women are not greatly to be blamed if they seek their 
husbands' eternal salvation, but are rather to be commended as causes of a noble 
and worthy effect." 
He speaks with evident feeling of one who is imprisoncd 
for debt. 


"T. Take heed of debts ; temper thy desires, and moderate thy tongue. 
C. It is a devilish thing to owe money. 
T. For ail that he is so proud that though he have need of patience he calleth 
for revenge. 
C. Could not he save himself out of the hands of those catchpoles, counter 
guardians, or sergeants ? 
T. Seeking to save himself by flight from that rascality he had almost left the 
lining of his cap behind. 
C. I am sorry for his mischance, for with his jests, toys, fooleries, and 
pleasant conceits, he would have made Heraclitus himself to burst his heart 
with laughing. 
T. Did you ever go see him ),et ? 
C. I would not go into prison to fetch one of my eyes if I had left it there. 
T. Yet there be some honest men there. 
C. And where Mil you have them but in places of persecution ? 
T. You bave reason. 
C. I would hot be painted there so much do I hate and loathe the 

Speaking of the Court and courtiers he says" 

" C. The favours of the Court are like fait weather in winter, or clouds in 
sumlner» and Court, in former rime, was counted death. 
T. It is still Court for the vicious, but death for the virtuous, learned and 
C. Seven days doth the Court regard a virtuous man, be he never so 
mannerly, well-brought up, and of gentle conditions. That is, the first day he 
makes a show of himself, he is counted gold; the second, silver ; the third, 
copper ; the fourth, tin ; the fifth, lead ; the sixth, dross ; and the seventh, 
nothing at ail, whereas the contrary happeneth of the vicious. 
T. Vet the virtuous bave sometimes got rich gifts there. 
C. Vea, but they corne as seldom as the year ofjubilee. 
T. Ver some of them are so courteous, so gentle, so kind, so liberal, so 
bountiful, that envy itself cannot choose but love them, and blame honour them, 
and, I think, there is no Court in the world that bath more nobility in it than 
T. But tell me truth, had you never the mind to become a courtier ? 
C. He that is well, let him hot stir, for if in removing he break his leg, at his 
own peril be it. 
T. Where there is lire there is means ; where means, entertainment ; where 
entertainment, hope ; where hope, there is comfort." 

How closely this last passage resembles the philosophy 


of Parolles, after his disgrace, in Act IV. Scene iii. of All's 
Well that Ends Well. 

PAR. Yet am I thankful : if my heart were great, 
'Twould burst at this. Captain, I'll be no more ; 
But I will eat and drink, and sleep as sort 
As captain shall : simply the thing I am 
Shall make me live. 
There's place and means for every man alive. 
The familiarity of the public with the character of 
Falstaff, under the naine of Sir John Oldcastle, is evidenced 
by the frequency with which both this play and character 
are referred to by the latter naine even affer the publication of 
the First Part of IVenry IV. in  598, with the naine changed to 
Falstaff. If this play was originally composed, as is usually 
suggested, in I596 or I597, the short period which it could 
bave been presented in its earlier form, and before its 
revision in the beginning of 598, would scarcely allow for 
the confirmed acquaintance of the public with the naine of 
Sir John Oldcastle in connection with the characterisation 
developed by Shakespeare. While Shakespeare took this 
name from the old play of The Famous Victories of Henry 1/-., 
there is no similarity between the characterisation of the 
persons presented under that naine in the two plays. 
Nicholas Rowe, Shakespeare's earliest biographer, is 
responsible for the report that the change of the naine of 
this character from Oldcastle to Falstaff was made by 
Shakespeare at the command of the Queen, and owing to 
the protest of Lord Cobham. It is not unlikely that there 
was some basis of truth for this report, nor improbable that 
Lord Cobham's alleged objection was caused by the mis- 
representations of Shakespeare's literary vals, including 
Florio, whose own "ox had been gored." 


In I597 the Wardenship of the Cinque Ports having 
become vacant, Sir Robert Sidney, who had been long 
absent from England as Governor of Flushing, and was 
desirous of returning, ruade application for the office, being 
aided in his suit by the Earl of Essex and others of his 
friends in Essex's party. Sir Robert Cecil, while encouraging 
Sidney and professing friendship, secretly aided Lord 
Cobham for the post. Sidney's military fitness for so 
responsible a charge was constantly urged against Cobham's 
lack of martial experience, but the Queen, after a long delay, 
during which much heat developed between the contestants 
and their friends, finally decided în favour of her relative, 
Lord Cobham. The Earl of Southampton was one of Sir 
Robert Sidney's most intimate friends and ardent admirers, 
and must have taken some interest in this long-drawn-out 
rivalry. It is possible that Shakespeare, instigated by 
Southampton, may have introduced some personal reflec- 
tions suggestive of Cobham's military inadequacy into the 
performance of the play at this crucial perîod, Cobham's 
alleged descent from the historical Oldcastle lending the 
suggestion its personal significance. 
The sixth book of Sonnets was written either late in 
I!;96, or in I597. A line in the first Sonnet of this book 
(Thorpe's 66) implies, on Shakespeare's part, a recent un- 
pleasant experience with the authorities : 
"And art ruade tongue-tied by authority." 
It is apparent that whatever was the cause, some difficulty 
arose in about I597 regarding the naine Oldcastle. Nicholas 
Rowe's report is substantiated by Shakespeare's own apolo- 
getic words in the Epilogue to t]ezry I V., Part II. : 
"If you be hot too much cloyed with fat meat, out humble author will 
çontinue the story, with Sir John in it» and make you merry with fait IoEthefine 


of France ; where» for any thing I know, Falstaff shall die of a sweat, unless 
already a' be killed with your hard opinions ; for Oldeastle died a martyr, and 
this is not the man." 

If Shakespeare was compelled to alter this name for the 
reasons reported by Nicholas Rowe, it is not unlikely that 
Florio and his literary allies helped in some manner to 
arouse the resentment of Lord Cobham. In altering the 
play in x598, and changing the naine of Sir John Oldcastle 
to Sir John Falstaff, I am convinced that Shakespeare 
intentionally made his caricature of John Florio more trans- 
parent by choosing a naine having the same initials as his, 
and furthermore, that in altering the historical naine of 
Fastolfe to Falstaff, he intended to indicate Florio's relations 
with Southampton as a false-staff, a misleader of youth. 
The Eilogue of the Second Part of Henry lU., while deny- 
ing a representation of the historical Sir John Oldcastle in 
the words "this is not the man," implies at the same rime 
tkat so»«e other personal application is intended in the charac- 
terisation of Falstaff. 
The First Part of He,y IV., with its significant allusion 
to the " Humourous Conceits of Sir John Falstaff" on the 
title-page, was entered on the Stationers' Registers under 
date of 25th February x598, and was published within a 
short period. That John Florio recognised Shakespeare's 
satire and personal intention in choosing a character with 
his own initials he shows within a month or two of this date 
in his "Address to the Reader," prefixed to his IVorhle of 
IVordes. He accuses a person, whom he indicates under 
the initials " H. S." of having made a satirical use of his 
initials "J.F." It is evident that in using the letters " H. S." 
he is not giving the actual initials of lais antagonist. 
Addressing " H. S." he says : "And might not a man, that 


can do as much as you (that is reade) finde as much matter 
out of H. S. as you did out of J.F.?" He says the person 
at whom he aires is a "reader" and a "writer" too; he also 
indicates him as a maker of plays. He says: 
" Let Aristopanes and his comedians make filmes, and 
scowre their mouthes on Socrates; those very mouthes they 
make to vilifie, shall be meanes to amplifie his verrue. And 
it was hot easie for Cato to speake evill, so was it not usuall 
for him to heare evill. It may be Socrates would not kicke 
againe, if an asse did kicke at him, yet some that cannot be 
so wise, and will not be so patient as Socrates, will for such 
jadish tricks give the asse his due burthen of bastonadas. Let 
H. S. hisse, and his complices quarrell, and ail breake their 
gals, I/zave a Kreat faction of good writers to bandie with me." 
Florio here gives palpable evidence of the fact that his 
was not an isolated case, but that he was banded with a literary 
faction in hostility to Shakespeare, which included Roydon, 
who published Villobie his Avisa in I594, again in 1596, 
and again in 1599 ; Chapman, who, in 1593, attacked Shake- 
speare in the early 1]istriomastix, and again in 599 in its 
revision, as well as in his poem to Harriot, appended to 
his ./IcMlles SMeld in the same year; and Marston, who 
joined Chapman in opposition to Shakespeare, and helped 
in the revision of 1]istriomastb;. In the words " Let H. S. 
hisse, and his complices quarrell, etc.," Florio also gives 
evidence that Shakespeare at this period had literary allies. 
In the story of the Sonnets I shall show that Dekker was 
Shakespeare's principal ally in what has been called the 
"War of the Theatres," which is supposed to have 
commenced at this rime, and, bearing in mind Chettle's 
recorded collaboration with Dekker at this same period, it is 
evident that he also sided with Shakespeare. 


A careful search of Elizabethan literature fails to bring 
to light any otker writer wko maks a satirical use of the 
initials "J. F.," or any record of a writer bearing" initials in 
ay way resembling "I. S." wko in aty mnner approximates 
to Florio's description of a "reader" and a "writer too" as 
well as a maker of iNays. 
I have already shown Chapman's references to Shake- 
speare in the dedication of The Shadow of Night. His 
allusion to Shakespeare as "passion-driven" at that date 
(1594) being a reference to his relations with the "dark 
lady." That he suggests Shakespeare, in his capacity of 
"reader" to the Earl of Southampton, and that he takes 
flings at his social quality in the expression "Judgements 
butcher," which I recognise as an allusion to his father's 
trade, and in the words " Intonsi Catones," as a reference to 
his provincial breeding as well as to the flowing manner in 
which he wore his hair. In elucidating the meaning of the 
initiais " H. S.," Florio still more coarsely indicates our 
country-bred poet, and accuses him of being a parasite, a 
bloodsucker, and a monster of lasciviousness. His abusive 
descriptions are given in Latin and Italian phrases com- 
mencing with the letters H and S. His reason for using 
the letter H no doubt being that lhere is no W in cither 
Italian or Latin, H beinff its nearest tkonetic equivalent. Let 
us consider the whole passage. 

"There is another sort of leering curs, that rather snarle 
than bite, whereof I coulde instance in one, who lighting 
upon a good sonnet of a gentlemans, a friend of mine, that 
loved better to be a Poet, then to be counted so, called the 
author a rymer, notwithstanding he had more skill in good 
Poetrie, then my slie gentleman seemed to have in good 
manners or humanitie. But my quarrell is to a tooth-lesse 


dog, that hateth where he cannot hurt, and would faine biLe 
when he hath no teeth. His name is H.S. Do hot take iL 
for the Romane H. S. for he is not of so much worth, unlesse 
iL be as H. S. is twice as much and a halle as halfe an As. 
But value you him how you will, I am sure he highly valueth 
himselfe. This fellow, this H.S. reading (for I would you 
should knowe he is a reader azd a w.iter too) under my last 
epistle to the reader J. F. ruade as familiar a word of F. as if 
I had bin his brother. Now Recte fit oculis magister Luis, 
said an ancient writer to a much-like reading gramarian- 
pedantel: God save your eie-sight, sir, or aL least your in- 
sight. And might not a man, that can do as much as you 
(that is, reade) finde as much malter out of H. S. as you did 
out of J.F.? As forexampleH. S. why may iL not stand 
as well for Haeres Stultitiae, as for Homo Simplex? or for 
Hircus Satiricus, as well as for any of them ? And this in 
Latine, besides Hedera Seguace, Harpia Subatai Humore 
Superbo, Hipocrito Simulatore in Italian. And in English 
world without end. Huffe Snuffe, Horse Stealer, Hob 
Sowter, Hugh Sot, Humphrey Swineshead, Hodge Sow- 
gelder. Now blaster H. S. if this do gaule you, forbeare 
kicking hereafter, and in the meane Lime you may make a 
plaister ofyour dried Marjoram. I have seene in my daies 
an inscription, harder to finde out the meaning, and yet 
easier for a man to picke a better meaning out of iL, if he be 
not a man of H. S. condition." 

IL will be noticed that Florio's reflections upon Shake- 
speare's breeding, morals, and manners, while couched in 
coarser terres, are of the same nature as Chapman's. Ben 
Jonson,--as shall later be shown,--in Every dfan out of 
]-dumou,-, casts similar slurs aL Shakespeare's provincial 
origin. IL is likely that the friend whose sonnet had been 
criticised and who was called a " rymer" by " H. S." was 
1 A grammar-school pedant, alluding to Shakespeare's limited education. 


none other than George Chapman. The fifth book of 
Shakespeare's Sonnets to the Earl of Southampton vas 
written against Chapman's advances upon his patron's 
favour. In the tenth Sonnet in this book, which is numbered 
as the 38th in Thorpe's arrangement, Shakespeare refers 
to Chapman as a rhymer in the lines : 

" Be thou the tenth Muse ten times more in worth 
Than those old nine which rhymers invocate." 

The few records concerning Florio, from which we may 
derive any idea of his personal appearance and manner, 
suggest a very singular individuality. Thcre was evidently 
something peculiar about his face; he was undoubtedly 
witty and worldly-wise, a braggart, a sycophant, and some- 
what of a buffoon. He was imbued with an exaggerated 
idea of his own importance, and possessed of most un- 
blushing assurance. In 1591 he signed his address "To 
the Reader," prefixed to his Second Fruites, "Resolute 
John Florio," a prefix which he persisted thereaffer in 
using in similar addresses in other publications. In I6OO 
Sir William Cornwallis (who at that time had seen Florio's 
translation of Montaigne's tssays in MS.) writes of him: 
" Montaigne now speaks good English. It is done by a 
fcllow less beholding to nature for his fortune than wit, 
yet lesser for his face than fortune. The truth is, he looks 
more like a good fellow than a wise man, and yet he is 
wise beyond either his fortune or education." 
Between the year 1598 (when Florio dedicated his 
bVorld of Wordes to the Earl of Southampton) and 16o3, 
when Southampton was released from the Tower upon the 
accession of James I., we have no record of Florio's 
connection with that nobleman. It was undoubtedly due 


to Southampton's influence in the new Court that Florio 
became reader to Queen Anna and Gentlernan of the Privy 
Chamber to James I. His native vanity and arrogance 
blossomed into full bloom in this connection, in which he 
seems to have been tolerated as a sort of superior Court 
jester. The extravagant and grandiloquent diction of his 
early dedications read like commonplace prose when com- 
pared with the inflated verbosity of his later dedications 
to Queen Anna. In I6 3 he issued a new edition of 
Montai«ne's Essays which he dedicated to the Queen. A 
comparison of the flattering sycophancy of this dedication 
with the quick transition of histone in his curt and insolent 
address "To the Reader" in the same book will give some 
idea of the man's shallow bumptiousness. 


By the grace of God, Queen of England, Scotland, France and Ireland. 
Imperial and Incomparable Majestie. Seeing with me all of me is in your 
royal possession, and whatever pieces of mine have hitherto under the starres 
passed the public view, corne now of right to be under the predomination 
of a power that both eontains ail their perfeetions and hath influences of a 
more sublime nature. I could not but also take in this part (whereof time 
had worn out the edition) whieh the woæld had long since had of mine and 
lay it at your sacred feet as a memorial of my devoted duty, and to show that 
where I ara I must be all I am and eannot stand dispersed in my observance 
being wholly (and therein happy)--Vour Saered Majesties most humble and 
Loyal servant, JOHN FLORIO. 


Enough, if not too much, hath been said of this translation, if the faults 
found even by my own selle in the first impression be now by the printer 
corrected, as he was directed, the work is much amended ; if not, know, that 
through this mine attendance on her Majestie I could not intend it: and 
blame not Neptune for thy second shipwrecke. Let me conclude with this 
worthy mans daughter of alliance 'Que l'en semble donc lecteur.' 
Still Resolute JOHN FLORIO, 
Gentleman Extraordinary and Groome of the Privy Chamber." 




SIR, in this stirring time, and pregnant prime of invention 
when everie bramble is fruitefull, when everie mol-hill hath 
cast of the winters mourning garment, and when everie 
man is busilie woorking to feede his owne fancies; some 
by delivering to the presse the occurrences & accidents 
of the world, newes from the marte, or from the mint, and 
newes are the credite of a travailer, and first question of 
an Englishman. Some like Alchimists distilling quint- 
essences of wit, that melt golde to nothing, and yet would 
make golde of nothing ; that make men in the moone, and 
catch the moon shine in the water. Some pùtting on pyed 
coates lyke calendars, and hammering upon dialls, taking 
the elevation of tancridKe Church (their quotidian walkes) 
pronosticate of faire, of foule, and of smelling weather; 


men weatherwise, that wil by aches foretell of change and 
alteration of wether. Some more active gallants ruade of 
a finer molde, by devising how to win their Mistrises 
favours, and how to blaze and blanche their passions, with 
aeglogues, songs, and sonnets, in pitifull verse or miserable 
prose, and most for a fashion: is not Love then a wagg, 
that makes men so wanton? yet love is a pretie thing to 
give unto my Ladie. Othersome with new caracterisings 
bepasting al the posts in London to the proofe, and fouling 
of paper, in twelve howres thinke to effect Calabrian 
wonders: is not the number of twelve wonderfull? Some 
with Amadysing & Martinising a multitude of out libertine 
yonlers with triviall, frivolous, and vaine vaine droleries, 
set manie mindes a gadding; could a foole with a feather 
make men better sport? I could hot chuse but apply my 
self in some sort to the season, and either proove a weede 
in my encrease without profit, or a wholesome pothearbe 
in profit without pleasure. If I prove more than I promise, 
I will impute it to the bountie of the gracious Soile where 
my endevours are planted, whose soveraine verrue divided 
with such worthles seedes, hath transformed my unregarded 
slips to medcinable simples. Manie sowe corne, and reape 
thisles; bestow three yeares toyle in manuring a barraine 
plot, and bave nothing for their labor but their travel: 
the reason why, because they leave the low dales, to seeke 
thrift in the hill countries; and dig for gold on the top 
of the Alpes, when Eso.Ps cock found a pearle in a lower 
place. For me I ara none of their faction, I love not to 
climbe high to catch shadowes; suficeth gentle Sir, that 
your perfections are the Port where my labors must anchor, 
whose manie and liberall favours have been so largely 
extended unto me, that I have long time studied how I 
might in some fort gratefully testifie my thankfulnes unto 
you. But when I had assembled ail my thoughts, & 
entred into a contrarious consultation of my utmost abilities, 
I could not find anie employment more agreeable to my 


power, or better beseeming my dutie, than this present 
Dedication, whereby the world, by the instance of your 
never entermitted benevolence towards me, should have 
a perfect insight into your vertue & bountie, (qualifies 
growne too solitary in this age) and your selle might be 
unfallibly perswaded in what degree I honor and regarde 
you. For indeede I neither may in equitie forget, nor in 
reason conceale the rare curtesies you vouchsaff me at 
Oxford, the friendly offers and great liberalitie since (above 
my hope and desert) continued at Londa,, wherewith you 
have fast bound me to beare a dutiful & grateful observance 
towards you while I live, & to honour that mind from 
which as from a spring al your friendships & goodnes 
hath ftowed: And therefore to give you some paune and 
certaine assurance of a thankfull minde, and my professed 
devotion I have consecrated these my slender endevours 
wholy to your delig]t, which shall stand for an image and 
monument of your worthines to posteritie. And though 
they serve to pleasure and profite manie, yet shall my selle 
reape pleasure, also if they please you well, under whose 
naine and cognisance they shall goe abroad and seeke 
their fortunes. How the world will entertaine them I know 
not, or what acceptance your credit may adde to their 
basenes I ara yet uncertaine; but this I dare vaunt without 
sparke of vaine-glory that I have given you a taste of the 
best Italian fruites, the Thuscane Garden could affoorde; 
but if the pallate of some ale or beere mouths be out of 
taste that they cannot taste them, let them sporte but not 
spue. The moone keeps her course for all the dogges 
barking. I have for these fruites ransackt and rifled all 
the gardens of faine throughout Italie (and they are the 
Hesperides) if translated they do prosper as they flourished 
upon their native stock, or eate them & they will be 
sweete, or set them & they will adorne your orchyards. 
The maiden-head of my industrie I yeelded to a noble 
Mecenas (renourned Lecester) the honor of England, whom 


thogh like Hector every miscreant Mirmidon dare strik being 
dead, yet sing Iomer or Firil, write friend or foe, of Troy, 
or Troyes issue, that Iectr must have his desert, the General 
of his Prince, the Paragon of his Peeres, the watchman of 
our peace, 
" Non sa se migliar Z)uce a Cavalliero" 
as Petrarke hath in his triumph of faine; and to conclude, 
the supporter of his friends, the terror of his foes, and the 
Britton Patron of the Muses. 
« Dardanias light, and Troyans faithfulst hope." 
But nor I, nor this place may halfe suffice for his praise, 
which the sweetest singer of ail out westerns shepheards 
hath so exquisitely depainted, that as Achilles by Alexander 
was counted happy for having such a rare emblazoner of 
his magnanimitie, as the Meonian ioete; so I account him 
thrice-fortunate in having such a herauld of his verrues as 
Spencer; Curteous Lord, Curteous Spencer, I knowe not 
which hath purchast more faine, either he in deserving so 
well of so famous a scholler, or so famous a scholler in being 
so thankfull without hope of requitall to so famous a Lord : 
But leaving him that dying left al Artes, and al strangers 
as Orphanes, forsaken, and friendles, I will wholy convert 
my muze to you (my second patron) who amongst many 
that beare their crests hie, and mingle their titles with 
TAMMARTI QUAM MERCURIO are an unfayned embracer of 
verrues, and nourisher of knowledge and learning. I pub- 
lished long since my first fruits of such as were but meanely 
entred in the Italian tongue, (which because they were the 
first, and the tree but young were something sower, yet at 
last digested in this cold climat) knowing well that they 
would both nourish and delight, & now I have againe after 
long toyle and diligent pruning of my orcharde brought 
forth my second fruites, (better, riper, and pleasanter than 
the first) not unfit for those that embrace the language of 
the muses, or would beautifie their speech with a not vulgar 


bravery. These two I brought forth as the daughters and 
offsprings of my care and studie: My elder (as before is 
noted) because she was ambitious (as heîres are wont) I 
narried for preferment and for honour, but this younger 
(fayrer, better nurtured, & comelier than her sister) because 
my hope of such preferment and honour as my first had, 
fayled me, I thought to have cloystred up in some solitarynes, 
which shee perceiving, with baste putting on her best 
ornaments and (following the guise of her countrie-women 
presuming very much upon the love and favour of her 
parentes) hath voluntaryly made her choyce (plainly telling 
me that she will hot leade apes in hell) and matched with 
such a one as she best liketh, and hopeth will both dearly 
love her, & make her such a joynter as shal be to thc 
comfort of her parents, and joy of her match, and therefore 
have I given ber my consent, because shee hath jumped so 
well with modesty, and hot aspired so high that shee might 
be upbraided either with ber birth or basenes when she could 
hot mend it. I know the world will smile friendlier, and 
gaze more upon a damzell marching in figured silkes (who 
are as paper bookes with nothing in them) than upon one 
being onely clad in home-spunn cloth (who are as playne 
cheasts full of treasure)yet communis error shall not have 
my company, and therefore have I rather chosen to present 
my Italian and English proverbiall sportes to such a one as 
I know joynes them both so aptly in himselfe, as I doubt 
whether is best in him, but he is best in both; who loves 
them both, no man better; and touching proverbs, invents 
them, no man finer; and aplyes them, no man fitter; and 
that taketh his greatest contentment in knowledge of 
languages (guides and instruments to perfection and 
excellency) as in Nectar and Ambrosia (meate onely for 
Gods and deyfied mindes,)I shal hot neede to trouble my 
selle or you with any commendation of the matter I deliver, 
nor to give credit by some figures and colours to proverbs 
and sentences, seeing your selfe know well (whose censure I 


most respect) both how much a proverbiall speech (namely 
in the Italian) graceth a wise meaning, and how probably 
it argueth a good conceipt, and also how naturally the 
ltalians please themselves with such materyall, short, and 
witty speeches (which when they themselves are out of 
Italy and amongst strangers, who they think hath learnt 
a little ltalian out of Castilions courtier, or Guazzo his 
dialogues, they will endevour to forget or neglect and 
speake bookish, and not as they wil doe amongst them- 
selves because they know their proverbs never came over 
the Alpes) no lesse than with the conceipted apothegmes, 
or Impreses, which never rail within the reach of a barren or 
vulgar head. What decorum I have observed in selecting 
them, I leave to the learned to consider. Thus craving the 
continuall sun-shine of your worships favour towards me, 
and that they may never decline to any west, and desiring 
your friendly censure of my travailes, I wish unto you your 
owne wishes, which are such as wisedome endites, and 
successe should subscribe.--¥our affectionate in ail he may. 




READER, good or bad, name thyself, for I know not 
which to tearme thee, unless heard thee read, and reading 
judge, or judging exercise; or curtesie the cognisance of 
a Gentleman, or malice the badge of a Momus, or exact 
examination the puritane seale of a criticall censor: to the 
first (as to my friends) I wish as gracious acceptance where 
they desire it most, as they extend where I deserve it least ; 
to the second I can wish no worse than they worke them- 
selves, though I should wish them blyndnes, deafnes, and 
dumbnes : for blynd they are (or worse) that see their owne 
vices, others vertues : deafe they are (or worse) that never 
could heare well of themselves, nor would heare well of 
others: and dumbe they are (and worse) that speake not 
but behinde mens backs (whose bookes speake to all ;) and 
speake nought but is naught like themselves, than who, 
what can be worse? As for critiks I accompt of them as 
crickets; no goodly bird if a man marke them, no sweete 
note if a man heare them, no good luck if a man have them ; 
they lurke in corners, but catch cold if they looke out ; they 
lie in sight of the furnace that tryes others, but will not 
corne neare the flame that should purifie themselves: they 
are bred of filth, & fed with filth, what vermine to call 
them I know not, or wormes, or flyes, or what worse ? The¥ 


are like cupping glasses, that draw nothing but corrupt 
blood ; like swine, that leave the cleare springs to wallow in 
a puddle: they doo hot as Plutarke and Aristarcus derive 
philosophie, and set flowers out of Homer ; but with Zoylus 
deride his halting, and pull asunder his faire joynted verses : 
they doo not seeke honie with the bee, but suck poyson with 
the spider. They will doo nought, yet ail is naught but 
what they doo; they snuff our lampes perhaps, but sure 
they add no oyle; they will heale us of the toothache, but 
are themselves sick of the fever-lourdane. Demonstrative 
rethorique is their studie, and the doggs letter they can 
snarle alreadie. As for me, for it is I, and I am an English- 
man in Italiane, I know they have a knife at command to 
cut my throate, Un Inglese Italianato, e un Diauolo in- 
carnato, lqow, who the Divell taught thee so much Italian ? 
speake me as ranch more, and take ail. Meane you the 
men, or their mindes? be the men good, and their mindes 
bad ? speake for the men (for you are one) and I will doubt 
of your minde: Mislike you the language? XVhy the best 
speake it best, and hir 5ajestie none better. I, but too 
manie tongues are naught; indeede one is too manie for 
him that cannot use it well. Mithridates was reported to 
have learned three and twentie severall languages, and 
Ennius to have three harts, because three tongues, but it 
should seeme thou hast hot one sound heart, but such a one 
as is cancred with ennui; nor anie tongue, but a forked 
tongue, thou hissest so like a shake, and yet me thinkes by 
thy looke, thou shouldst have no tongue thou gapest and 
mowest so like a frogg: I, but thou canst reade whatsoever 
is good in Italian, translated into English. And was it 
good that they translated then ? or were they good that 
translated it? Had they been like thee, they were hot 
woorth the naming; and thou being unlike them, art 
unworthie to naine them. Had they hot knowen Italian, 
how had they translated it ? had they hot translated it, where 
were not thy reading? Rather drinke at the wel-head, than 


sip at pudled streames ; rather buy at the first hand, than goe 
on trust at the hucksters. I, but thou wilt urge me with their 
manners & vices, (not remembring that where great vices are, 
there are infinit vertues) & aske me whether they be good or 
bad ? Surely touching their vices, they are bad (& I condemne 
them) like thyself; the men are as we are, (is bad, God amend 
both us & them) and I think wee may verie well mend 
both. I, but (peradventure) thou wilt say my frutes are 
wyndie, I pray thee keepe thy winde to coole thy potage. 
I, but they are rotten : what, and so greene ? that's marvell ; 
indeede I thinke the caterpiller hath newly caught them. 
If thy sight and taste be so altred, that neither colour or 
taste of mg frutes will please thee, I greatly force not, for I 
never minded to be thy fruterer. Muro bianco is paper 
good enough for everie matto: Prints were first invented 
for wise mens use, and hot for fooles play. These Proverbs 
and proverbiall Phrases, (hethertoo so peculiar to the 
Italians, that they could never find the way over the 
Apenines, or meanes to become familiar to anie other 
Nation) have onely been selected and stamped for the wise 
and not for thee, (and therefore hast thou no part in them) 
who will kindly accept of them : (though in the ordering of 
them I differ from most mens methodes, who in their 
compositions onely seeke for words to expresse their 
matter, and I have endevored to finde matter to declare 
those ltalian words & phrases, that yet never saw Albions 
cliffes) for the pleasure of which, I will shortly send into 
the world an exquisite Italian and English Dictionary, and 
a compendious Grammer. The Sunne spreading his beames 
indifferently (and my frutes are in an open orchyard, in- 
different to all) doth soften wax, and harden clay; (my 
frutes will please the gentler, but offend the clayish or 
clownish sort, whom good things scarcely please, and 1 
care not to displease). I know I have them not all, and 
you with readie (if I should say so)with Bate me an ace 
quoth Bolton, or Wide quoth Bolton when his bolt flew 


backward. Indeed here are not all, for tell me who can tell 
them; but here are the chiefs, and thanke me that I cull 
them. The Greekes and Latines thanks Erasmus, and our 
Englishmen make much of Heywood : for Proverbs are the 
pith, the proprieties, the proofs, the purities, the elegancies, 
as the commonest so the commendablest phrases of a 
language. To use them is a grace, to understand them a 
good, but to gather them a paine to me, though gain to 
thee. I, but for all that I must hot scape without some 
new flout: now would I were by thee to give thee another, 
and surely I would give thee bread for cake. Farewell if 
thou meane well; els fare as ill, as thou wishest me to fare. 
The last of April, x 591- 
Resolute I.F. 


WORDE, ç, 1598 



THIS dedication (Right Honorable and that worthily)may 
haply make your Honors muse; wellfare that dedication, 
that may excite your muse. I ara no auctorifed Herauld to 
marshall your precedence. Private dutie might perhaps give 
one the prioritie, where publike respect should prefer another. 
To choose Tullie or Ausonius Consuls, is to prefer them be- 
fore all but one; but to choose either the former of the 
twaine, is to prefer him before ail. It is saide of Atreus in a 
fact most disorderly, that may be saide of any in so ordering 
his best dutie. 
It makes no matter whether, yet he resolves of neither. 
I onely say your Honors best knowe your places: An 
Italian turne may serve the turne. Lame are we in Platoes 
censure, if we be not ambidexters, using both handes alike. 
Right-hand, or leff-hand as Peeres with mutuall paritie, 
without disparagement may be please your Honors to joyne 
hand in hand, an so jointly to lende an eare (and lende it I 
beseech you) to a poore man, that invites your Honors to a 
christening, that I and my poore studies, like Pkilemon and 


Baucis, may in so lowe a cottage entertaine so high, if not 
deities, yet dignities ; of whom the Poet testifies. 
'« Ma sopraogni altro frutto gradito 
Fu il volto allegro, e'l non bigiardo amore. 
E benchefosse pouero il conuito, 
Non lu la volonta pouera e'l core. 
But of ail other cheere most did content 
A cheerefull countenance, and a willing minde, 
Poore entertainment being richly ment, 
Pleaded excuse for that which was behinde." 

Two overhastie fruites of mine nowe some yeeres since, 
like two forwarde females, the one put her selfe in service to 
an Earle of Excellence, the other to a Gentleman of Woorth, 
both into the worlde to runne the race of their fortune. 
Now where my rawer youth brought foorth those female 
fruites, my riper yeeres affoording me I cannot say a braine- 
babe 3[i,zerva, armed at ail affales at first houre; but rather 
from my Italian Se»zele, and English thigh, a bouncing boie, 
17acc]zus-like, almost ail named: And being as the manner 
of this countrie is, after some strength gathered to bring 
it abroade; I was to entreate three witnesses to the 
entrie of it into Christendome, over-presumptuous (I grant) 
to entreate so high a preference, but your Honors so 
gracious (I hope) to be over-entreated. My hope springs 
out of three stems: your Honors naturall benignitie; your 
able employment of such servitours ; and the towardly likelie- 
hood ofthis Springall to do you honest service. The first, 
to vouchsafe ail; the second, to accept this; the third, to 
applie it selfe to the first and second. Of the first, your 
birth, your place, and your custome; of the second, your 
studies, your conceits, and your exercise : of the thirde, my 
endevours, my proceedings, and my project gives assurance. 
Your birth, highly noble, more than gentle: your place, 
above others, as in degree, so in height of bountie, and other 
vertues: your custome, never wearie of well dooing: your 
studics much i al, most in Italian excellence: your conceits, 


by understanding others to work above them in your owne: 
your exercise, to reade, what the woi'lds best wits have 
written and to speake as they write. My endevours, to 
apprehend the best, if not all: my proceedings, to impart 
my best, first to your Honors, then to all that emploie me: 
my project, in this volume to comprehend the best and all. 
In truth I acknowledge an entyre debt, not onely of my best 
knowledge, but of all, yea of more then I know or can, to 
your bounteous Lordship most noble, most vertuous, and 
most Honorable Earle of Southampton, in whose paie and 
patronage I have lived some yeeres; to whom I owe and 
vowe the yeeres I bave to lire. But as to me, and manie 
more the glorious and gracious sunne-shine of your Honor 
hath infused light and life: so may my lesser borrowed 
light, after a principall respect to your benigne aspect, and 
influence, affoorde some lustre to some others. In loyaltie I 
may averre (my needle toucht, and drawne, and held by 
such an adamant) what he in love assumed, that sawe the 
other stars, but bent his course by the Pole-starre, and two 
guardes, avowing, Aspicit unam One guideth me, though 
more I see. Good parts imparted are not empaired: Your 
springs are first to serve your selfe, yet may yeelde your 
neighbours sweete water; your taper is to light to you first, 
and yet it may light your neighbours candle. I might makc 
doubt, least I or mine be not now of any further use to your 
selfe-sufficiencie, being at home so instructed for Italian, as 
teaching or learning could supplie, that there seemed no 
neede of travell: and nowe by travell so accomplished, as 
what wants to perfection ? Wherein no lesse must be 
attributed to your embellisht graces (my most noble, most 
gracious, and most gracefull Earle of Rutland) well entred in 
the toong, ere your Honor entered Italie, there therein 
so perfected, as what needeth a Dictionarie? Naie, if I 
offer service but to them that need it, with what face seeke 
I a place with your excellent Ladiship (my most-most 
honorcd, because best-best adorned Madame) who by con- 


ceited industrie, or industrious conceite, in Italian as in 
French, in French as in Spanish, in all as in English, under- 
stand what you reade, write as you reade, and speake as you 
write; yet rather charge your minde with matter, then your 
memorie with words ? And if this present, present so small 
profit, I must confesse it brings much lesse delight : for, what 
pleasure is a plot of simples, 0 non vista, o mal note, o nal 
radite, Or not seene, or iii knowne, or ill accepted ? Yet 
heere-hence may some good accrewe, not onelie to truantlie- 
schollers, which ever-and-anon runne to P-enuti, and llunno ", 
or to new-entred novices, that hardly can construe their 
lesson ; or to well-forwarde students, that have turned over 
Guazzo and Cstifflione, yea runne through Guarini, ,4 riosto, 
Taffo, Boccace and Petrarche" but even to the most compleate 
Doctor ; yea to him that best can stande tll'erta for the best 
ltalian, heereof sometimes may rise some use : since, have he 
the memorie of Themistocles, of Seneca, of Scaliffer yet is it 
not infinite, in so finite a bodie. And I have seene the best, 
yea naturall Italians, not onely stagger, but even sticke fast 
in the myre, and at last give it over, or give their verdict 
with An ignoramus, Boccace is prettie hard, yet understood : 
Petrarche harder, but explaned: l)ante hardest, but com- 
mented. Some doubt if ail aright. llunno for his foster- 
children hath framed a worlde of their wordes, l/Cuti taken 
much paines in some verie fewe authors; and our Villiam 
Tlzomas hath done prettilie; and if ail faile, although we 
misse or mistake the worde, yet make we up the sence. 
Such making is marring. Naie ail as good; but not as 
right. And not right, is fiat wrong. One sales of Petrarche 
for ail: A thousand strappadas coulde nor compell him to 
confesse, what some interpreters will make him sale he ment. 
And a Judicious gentleman of this lande will uphold, that 
none in England understands him thoroughly. How then 
ayme we at Peter Aretine, that is so wittie, hath such 
vadetie, and frames so manie new words? At Francesco 
l)oni who is so fantasticall, & so strange? At T/tomaso 


Garzoni in his Piazaa universale ; or at .411esandro Cittolini, 
in his Typecosmia, who have more proper and peculiar words 
concerning everie severall trade, arte, or occupation for everie 
particular toole, or implement belonging unto them, then 
ever any man heeretofore either collected in any booke, or 
sawe collected in any one language? How shall we under- 
stand Itanniball Caro, who is so full of wittie jestes, sharpe 
quips, nipping tantes, and scoffing phrases against that 
grave and learned man Lodivico Castelvetri, in his .4pologia 
de' Banchi? How shall the English Gentleman corne to 
the perfect understanding of Federico Grisone, his .4rte del 
Cavalcare, who is so full of strange phrases, and unusuall 
wordes, peculiar onely to horse-manship, and proper but 
to Cavalarizzi? How shall we understand so manie and 
so strange bookes, of so severall, and so fantasticall subjects 
as be written in the Italian toong ? How shall we, naie how 
may we ayme at the Venetian, at the Romane, at the Lombard, 
at the Neapolitane, at so manie, and so much differing 
Dialects, and Idiomes, as be used and spoken in Italie, 
besides the Florentine? Sure we must sale as that most 
intelligent and grave Prelate said, when he came new out 
of the South into the North, and was saluted with a womans 
sute in Northern. Now what is that in English ? If I, who 
many yeeres have ruade profession of this toong, and in this 
search or quest of inquirie bave spent most of my studies; 
yet many times in many wordes have beene so stal'd, and 
stabled, as such sticking made me blushinglie confesse my 
ignorance, and such confession indeede ruade me studiouslie 
seeke helpe, but such helpe was not readilie to be had at 
hande. Then may your Honors without any dishonour, 
yea what and whosoever he be that thinkes himselfe a very 
good Italian, and that to trip others, doth alwaies stande 
.41l'erta, without disgrace to himselfe, sometimes be at a 
stand, and standing see no easie issue, but for issue with 
a direction, which in this mappe I hold, if not exactlie 
delineated, yet conveniently prickt out. Is all then in this 


little? Ail I knowe: and more (I know) then yet in any 
other. Though most of these you know alreadie, yet have 
I enough, if you know anie thing more then you knew, by 
this. The retainer doth some service, that now and then 
but holds your Honors styrrop, or lendes a bande over a 
stile, or opens a gappe for easier passage, or holds a torch 
in a darke waie: enough to weare your Honors cloth. Such 
then since this may proove, proove it (right Honorable) and 
reproove hot for it my rudenes, or my rashnes; rudenes in 
presuming so high, rashnes in assuming so much for it that 
yet is unaprooved. Some perhaps will except against the 
sexe, and hot allowe it for a male-broode, sithens as our 
ltalians saie, Le parole sono fe»zine, & i fatti sono 1zaschy, 
Wordes they are women, and deeds they are men. But let 
such know that 19etti and fatti, wordes and deeds with me 
are ail of one gender. And although they were commonly 
Feminine, why might hot I by strong imagination (which 
Phisicions give so much power unto) alter their sexe? Or 
at least by such heaven-pearcing devotion as transformed 
I]zis, according to that description of the Poet. 

"Et ognimembro suo plu forte e sciolto 
Sente, e volge allamadre il motto, e'l lulne. 
Corne vero fanciullo esser vede 
Iphi va con parole alme, e devote 
Altempio con la madre, e la nutrice, 
E paga il voto, e'l suo miracoldice. 

Feeling more vigor in each part and strength 
Then earst, and that indeede she was a boy. 
Towards hir mother eies and wordes at length 
She turns, and at the temple with meeke joy 
tle and his nurse and mother utter how 
The case fell out, and so he paide his vow." 

And so his strength, his stature, and his masculine vigor 
(I would, haie I coulde saie vertue) makes me assure his 
sexe, and according to his sexe provide so autenticall 
testimonies. Laie then your blisse-full handes on his head 


(right Honorable) and witnes that he by me devoted to your 
Honors, forsakes my private cell, ail retired conceites, and 
selfe-respects to serve you in the worlde, the world in you ; 
and beleeves in your Honors goodnes, in proportion as his 
service shall be of moment and effectuall ; and that you will 
not onely in due censure be his judges, but on true judgement 
his protectors ; and in this faith desires to be numbered in 
your famille; so in your studies to attend, as your least 
becke may be his dieugarde; for he hath toong to answer, 
words at will, and wants not some wit, though he speake 
plaine what each thing is. So have I crost him, and so blest 
him, your god-childe, and your servant; that you may 
likewise give him your blessing, if it be but as when one 
standes you in steede, supplies you, or pleases you, you saie, 
Gods-blessing on him. But though in the fore-front he 
beares your Honorable names, it may be demanded how 
is it, your Honors gave not him his name? Heerein (right 
Honorable) beare with the fondnes of his mother, rny 
Mistresse 2/[use, who seeing hir female Arescusa turn'd to a 
pleasing male Arescon (as Plinie tels of one) beg'd (as 
some mothers use) that to the fathers naine she might 
prefixe a naine befitting the childes nature. So cald she 
him, A worlde of wordes : since as the Univers containes all 
things, digested in best equipaged order, embellisht with 
innumerable ornaments by the universall creator. And as 
Tipocosmia imaged by Allesaudro Cttolini, and Fabrica del 
mondo, framed by Francesco Alunno, and Piazza universale 
set out by Ttwmaso Garoni tooke their names of the universall 
worlde, in words to represent things of the world: as words 
are types of things, and everie man by himselfe a little world 
in some resemblances; so thought she, she did see as great 
capacitie, and as meete method in this, as in those latter, and 
(as much as there might be in Italian and English) a modell 
of the former, and therefore as good cause so to entitle it. 
If looking into it, it looke like the Sporades, or scattered 
Ilands, rather than one well-joynted or close-joyned bodie, 


or one coherent orbe: your Honors knowe, an armie ranged 
in files is fitter for muster, then in a ring; and jewels are 
sooner found in severall boxes, then all in one bagge. If in 
these rankes the Eglish outnumber the ltalian, congratulate 
the copie and varietie of our sweete-mother toong, which 
under this most Excellent well-speaking Princesse or Ladie 
of the worlde in all languages is growne as farre beyond that 
of former rimes, as her most flourishing raigne for all happines 
is beyond the raignes of former Princes. Right Honorable, 
I feare me I have detained your Honors too long with so 
homelie entertainment, yet being the best the meanenes of 
my skill can affoorde; which intending as my childes 
christening-banquet, heereunto I presumed to invite your 
Honors: but I hope what was saide at you Honors first 
comming (I meane in the beginning of my Epistle) shall serve 
for a finall excuse. And in conclusion (most Honorable) 
once againe at your departure give me leave to commend 
this sonne of mine to your favourable protections, and advowe 
him yours, with this licence, that as ttenricus Stephanus 
dedicated his Treasure of the Greeke toong to N[aximilian 
the Emperour, to Charles the French king, and to Eliaabeth 
our dread Soveraigne, and by their favours to their Univer- 
sities: So I may consecrate this lesser-volume of little-lesse 
value, but of like import, first, to your triple-Honors, then 
under your protections to all Italian-English, or English- 
Italian students. Vouchsafe then (highlie Honorable)as of 
manie ruade for others, yet made knowne to your Honors, so 
of this to take knowledge, who was borne, bred, and brought 
foorth for your Honors chiefe service; though more service 
it may do, to many others, that more neede it; since manie 
make as much of that, which is ruade for them, as that they 
made them-selves, and of adopted, as begotten children ; yea 
Adrian the Emperour ruade more of those then these; since 
the begotten are such as fates give us, the adopted such as 
choice culs us; they oftentimes Stolti, sarbati, & inutili, 
these ever with Coro intiero, leggiadre membra, eitente sana. 


Accepting therefore of the childe, I hope your Honors wish 
as well to the Father, who to your Honors all-devoted wisheth 
meeds of your merits, renowme of your vertues, and health of 
your persons, humblie with gracious leave kissing your thrice- 
honored hands, protesteth to continue ever 
Your Honors most humble and 
bounden in true service, 





I KNOW not how I may again adventure an Epistle to the 
reader, so are these rimes, or readers in these times, most 
part sicke of the sullens, and peevish in their sicknes, and 
conceited in their peevishnes. So should I feare the tire, 
that bave felt the flame so lately, and file from the sea, that 
have ),et a vow to pay for escaping my last shipwracke. 
Then what will the world say for ventring againe? A fuo 
danno, one wiil say. Et a torto si lamenta del mare, chi due 
volte civoul toinale, will another say. Good council indeede, 
but who followeth it ? Doe we hOt daily see the contrarie in 
practise ? Who loves to be more on the sea, then they that 
have been most on it ? Whither for change if they have kept 
at a stay: or for amends if they have lost: or for increase if 
they havegotten. Of these there are ynow and wise-ynough 
to excuse me. Thelefole I haie put foiward at aventure: 
But before I recount unto thee (gentle reader) the purpose of 
my new voyage: give me leave a little to please my selfe 
and refresh thee with the discourse of my olde danger. 
Which because in some respect is a common danger, the 
discoverie thereof may happily profit other men, as much as 
please myselfe. And here might I begin with those notable 
Pirates in this out paper-sea, those sea-dogs, or lande-Critikes, 
monsters of men, if hot beastes rather than men ; whose teeth 


are Canibals, their toongs adder-forkes, their lips aspes-poyson, 
their eies basiliskes, their breath the breath of a grave, their 
wordes like swordes of Turkes, that strive which shall dive 
deepest into a Christian lying bound before them. But for 
these barking and biting dogs, they are as well knowne as 
Scylla and Charybdis. 
There is another sort of leering curs, that rather snarle 
than bite, whereof I coulde instance in one, who lighting 
upon a good sonnet of a gentlemans, a friend of mine, that 
loved better to be a Poet, then to be counted so, called the 
auctor a rymer, notwithstanding he had more skill in good 
Poetrie, then my slie gentleman seemed to have in good 
manners or humanitie. But my quarrell is to a tooth-lesse 
dog that hateth where he cannot hurt, and would faine bite, 
when he bath no teeth. His naine is H.S. Doe not take 
it for the Romane Il. S. for he is not of so much worth, 
unlesse it be as H. S. is twice as much and a halfe as halfe 
an As. But value him how you will, I ara sure he highly 
valueth himselfe. This fellow, this H. S. readîng (for I would 
you should knowe he is a reader and a writer too) under my 
last epistle to the reader I. F. ruade as familiar a word of 
F. as if I had bin his brother. Now Recte fit oculis magister 
tuis, said an ancient writer to a much-like reading gramarian- 
pedante: God save your eie-sight, sir, or at least your in- 
sight. And might not a man that can do as much as you 
(that is, reade) finde as much matter out of H. S. as you did 
out of I. F. ? As for example, H. S. why may it not stand 
as well for Haerus Stultitiae, as for Homo Simplex ? or for 
Hara Suillina, as for Hostis Studioforum ? or for Hircus 
Satiricus, as well as for any of them ? And this in Latine, 
besides Hedera Seguice, Harpia Subata, Humore Superbo, 
Hipocrito Simulatore in Italian. And in English world 
without end, Huffe Snuffe, Horse Stealer, Hob Sowter, 
Hugh Sot, Humfrey Swineshead, Hodge Sowgelder. Now 
Master H. S. if this doe gaule you, forbeare kicking here- 
after, and in the meane rime you may make you a plaister of 


your dride Maroram. I have seene in my daies an inscription, 
harder to finde out the meaning, and yet easier for a man 
to picke a better meaning out of it, if he be not a man of 
H. . condition. There is a most excellent preface to the 
excellently translated booke signed _A. B. which when I 
sawe, I effsoones conceived, could I in perusing the whole 
A B C omit the needelesse, and well order the requisite 
lctters, I should find some such thing as Admirabilis Bonîtas, 
or Amantum Beatissumus. But how long thinke you would 
H. S. have bin footing and grunting ere he could have found 
as he is Hominum Simplicissimus, or would have pickt out 
as he is Hirudo Sanguifuga, so honest a meaning? Trust 
me I cannot but marvell at the disposition of these men, who 
are so malicious as they will not spare to stab others, though 
it be through their owne bodies, and wrong other men with 
their owne double harme. Such mens wordes a wise man 
compares to boltes shot right-up against heaven, that corne 
hot neare heaven, but downe againe upon their pates that 
shot them: or a man may compare them to durt flung at 
another man, which besides it defiles his handes that flings 
it, possibly it is blowne backe againe upon his owne face: or 
to monie put out to usurie, that returnes with increase, so 
they delivered with hatred, are repaide with much more: or 
to the blasting Sereno in hot countries, rising from puddles, 
dunghils, carions, putrified dampes, poysoned lakes, that 
being detestable itselfe, makes that much more detested from 
whence it cornes. On the other side a good word is a deaw 
from heaven to earth, that soakes into the roote and sends 
forth fruite from earth to heaven: it is a precious balme, 
that hath sweetenesse in the boxe, whence it cornes, sweet- 
nesse and vertue in the bodie, whereto it cornes: it is a 
golden chaine, that linkes the toongs, and eares, and harts 
of writers and readers, each to other. They hurt hot God 
(faith Seneca) but their owne soules, that overthrowe his 
altars: Nor harme they good men, but themselves, that 
turns their sacrifice of praises into blasphemie. They that 


rave, and rage, and raile against hcaven I say hot (faith be) 
they are guiltie of sacrilcge, but at least they loose their 
labour. Let Aristophanes and his cornedians rnake plaies, 
and scowre their mouthes on Socrates; those very rnouthes 
they rnake to vilifie, shall be the rneanes to amplifie his 
vertue. And as it was hot easie for Cato to speake evill, so 
was it not usuall for hirn to hear evill : it rnay be SOÇRATES 
would not kicke againe, if an asse did ldcke at him, yet sorne 
that cannot be so wise, and will not be so patient as Socrates, 
will for such jadish tricks give the asse his due burthen of 
bastonadas. Let t l. S. hisse, and lais complices quarrell, and 
ail breake their gals, I have a great faction of good writers 
to bandie with me. 

"Think they to set their teeth on tender stuffe? 
But they shall marre their teeth, and finde lne tough." 

Conantes frangere frangam, said Victoria Collonna: 

"Those that to breake me strive, 
l'le breake them if I thrive." 

Yet had hot H. S. so causelesly, so witlesly provokcd me, 
I coulde hot have bin hired, or induced against rny nature, 
against rny rnanner thus far to have urged hirn" though 
happily heereafter I shall rather conternne hirn, then farther 
pursue hirn. He is to blarne (faith Martiall, and further he 
brandes hirn with a knavish narne) that will be wittie in 
another rnans booke. How then will scoffing readers scape 
this rnarke of a rnaledizant ? whose wits have no other worke, 
nor better worth then to flout, and fall out? It is a foule 
blernish that Paterculus findes in the face of the Gracchi. 
They had good wits, but used thern ill. But a fouler blot 
then a Jewes letter is it in the foreheads of Caelies and Curio, 
that he sets, Ingeniose nequarn, they were wittily wicked. 
Pitie it is but everrnore wit should be vertuous, vertue gentle, 
gentrie studious, students gracious. Let follie be dishonest, 
dishonestie unnoble, ignobilitie scandalous and scandall 


slanderous. Who then are they that mispend all their 
leisure, yea take their cheefe pleasure in back biting well- 
deservers ? I see and ara sorie to see a sort of men, whose 
fifth element is malediction, whose life is infamie, whose 
death damnation, whose daies are surfeitîng, whose nights 
lecherie, yea such as Nanna could never teach Pippa, nor 
Comare and Balla discourse of and whose couches are 
Spintries; whose thrift is usurie, meales gluttonie, exercise 
cousenage, whose valour bragardrie, Astolpheidas, or Rodo- 
montadas, or if it corne to action, crueltie; whose com- 
munication is Atheisme, contention, detraction, or Paillardise, 
most of lewdness, seld of vertue, never of charitie ; whose 
spare-time is vanitie or villanie: yet will I not deale by 
them, as they doe by others. I like not reproofe where it 
pertaines not to me: But if they like to see their owne 
pictures in lively colours of their own ornaments, habille- 
ments, attendants, observances, studies, amours, religions, 
gaines, travels, imployments, furnitures, let them as gentle- 
men (for so I construe Nobiles, and more the¥ be not, if 
they be no lesse) goe to the Painters shop, or looking-glasse 
of Ammianus Marcellinus, an unpartiall historian, in his 
28. booke about the middle, and blush, and amend, and 
think, that thence, and out of themselves I might well draw 
a long declamation : they that understand him, will agnise 
this; they that doe hot, let them learne: let both conceive, 
how they conforme, and both reforme their deformities ; or if 
they will hot, at least let them forbeare to blur others because 
they are blacke themselves, least it be saide to them, as 
Seneca saide to one not unfitely, Te fera scabies depascitur, 
tu naeuos rides pulchriorum? this let them construe, and 
take to them the meaning of their labour. And though I 
more then feare much detracting : for I have already tasted 
some, and that extraordinarie though in an ordinarie place, 
where my childe was beaten ere it was borne: some divining 
of his imperfectnes for his English part; some fore-speaking 
his generall weakenes, and very gentl¥ seeming to pitie his 


fathers. And one averring he could beget a better of his 
owne, which like ynough he can, and hath done many a one, 
God forgive him. But the best is, my sonne with ail his 
faultes shall approove himself no misse-begotten. And for 
those exceptions, knowing from whom they come, I were 
very weake-minded if they coulde anything moove me. And 
that husbandman might be counted very simple, that for the 
ominous shreekes of an unluckie, hoarce-voist, dead-devour- 
ing night-raven or two, or for feare of the malice of his worst 
conditioned neighbors, would neglect either to till and sowe 
his ground, or after in due time to reape and thresh out his 
harvest, that might benefite so many others with that, which 
both their want might desire, and their thankfulness would 
deserve. So did I intend my first seede, so doe I my harvest. 
The first fruites onely reserved to my Honorable iatrones, 
the rest to every woorthie Ladie and gentleman that pleases 
to come and bu:y; and though I doubt not but ravens and 
crowes both, will have a graine or two now and then in spite 
of my teeth, especially H. S. who is so many graines too 
light : yet I ara well content to repay good for evill, thinklng 
it not impossible that by the taste of the corne those very 
soules may in time have their mouthes stopt for speaking 
evill against the husbandman. And let this comparison of a 
labouring man by the way put you in minde (gentle reader) 
of his labours, that hath laboured so much, and so long to 
save you a labour, which I doubt not but he may as justly 
stand upon in this toong-work, as in Latin Sir Thomas Eliot, 
Bishop Cooper, and after them Thomas Thomas, and John 
Rider have done amongst us: and in Greeks and Latin both 
the Stephans, the father and the sonne, who notwithstanding 
the helpes each of them had, yet none of them but thought 
he might challenge speciall thankes for his special travell, to 
better purpose then any before him. And if they did so 
in those toongs, where they had so many, and so great 
helpes, and in toongs which were helpes to one another; 
they that understande, will easily acknowledge the difference 


betwixt my paines and theirs : yet I desire no pre-eminence of 
thankes; but either equall thankes, or equall excuse. And 
well may I make that comparison betwixt our labours, that 
Allessandro Cittolini maketh in his Tipocosmia: we ail 
fared indeed like sea-faring men (according to my first com- 
parison) and lanched foorth into a deepe, and dangerous sea, 
but they had this advantage of me, that they were many to 
steere a passage-boate; I was but one to turne and winde 
the salles, to use the oare, to sit at sterne, to pricke my carde, 
to watch upon the upper decke, boate-swaine, pilot, mate, and 
toaster, ail offices in one, and that in a more unruly, more 
unweildie, and more roome-some vessell, then the biggest 
hulke on Thames, or burthen-bearing Caracke in Spaine, or 
slave-tiring Gallie in Turkie, and that in a sea more divers, 
more dangerous, more stormie, and more comfortlesse then 
any Ocean. If any thinke I had great helpes of Alunno, or 
of Venuti, let him confer, and knowe I bave in two, yea 
almost in one of my letters of the Alphabet, more wordes, 
then they have in all their twentie; and they are but for a 
few auctors in the Italian toong, mine for most that write 
well, as may appeere by the Catalog of bookes that I have 
read through of purpose for the accomplishing of this 
Dictionarie. I would hot meddle with their defects and 
errors nor yet amplifie the fulnesse or perfection of my 
owne worke, farther then upon a just ground to satisfie his 
good desire that wisheth the best helpe. If any man aske 
whether ail Italian wordes be here? I answer him, it may 
be no: and yet I thinke heere be as many, as he is likely to 
finde (that askes the question) within the compasse of his 
reading; and yet he may have read well too. I should 
thinke that very few wordes could escape those auctors I 
have set downe, which I have read of purpose to the absolute 
accomplishing of this worke, being the most principall, 
choisest, and difficult in the toong; especially writing in 
such varietie hot onely of matters, but of dialects: but what 
I aske him againe, how many hundred wordes he, and 


possibly his teachers too were gravelled in ? which he shall 
finde here explaned? If no other bookes can be so well 
perfected, but still sorne thing may be added, how much 
lesse a Word-booke? Since daily both new wordes are 
invented; and bookes still found, that make a new supplie 
of olde. We see the experience in Latin, a limited toong, 
that is at his full growth: and yet if a man consider the 
reprinting of Latin Dictionaries, ever with addition of new 
store, he would thinke it were still increasing. And yet in 
these Dictionaries as in ail other that that is printed still is 
reputed perfect. And so it is no doubt after the customarie 
and possible perfection of a Dictionarie, which kinde of 
perfection if I chalenge to mine (especially considering thc 
yeerelt increase, which is as certainly in this, in French, in 
Spanish, in Dutch, &c., as we find by experience it is in 
English; and I thinke I may vell sale more in this, then in 
the rest; yea and in the rest mostly from this) I hope no 
man that shall expend the woorth of this worke in impartiall 
examination, will thinke I challenge more then is due to it. 
And for English-gentlemen me thinks it must needs be a 
pleasure to them, to see so rich a toong out-vide by their 
mother-speech, as by the manie-folde Englishes or manie 
wordes in this is manifest? The want whereof in England 
heeretofore, I might justly say in ail Europe, might more 
endeare the woorth. Though without it some knew much, 
yet none knew ail Italian, as all may do by this. That well 
to know Italian is a grace of ail graces, without exception, 
which I ever exemplifie in ber gracious Highnes; whose 
due-deserved-praises set foorth aright I may rightly say, as 
a notable Italian writer saide earst of hir most-renowmed 
father of famous memorie, Che per capir le giufte lodi della 
quale conuerrebbe o che il cieli s'inalzaffe, o ch'il mondo 
s'allargaffe; or as the moderne Italian Homer saide of a 
Queene far inferious to hir thrice-sacred Majestie, Che le 
glorie altrui si esprimono scrivendo e parlando, quelle di fua 
serenissima e sacratissirna Maesta si possono solo esprimere 


maravigliando e tacendo. Of whose innumerable excellen- 
cies, is not the fore-most, yet most famous I have heard, and 
often have had the good hap and comfort to see, that no 
Embassador or stranger hath audience of hir Majestie, but 
in his native toong ; and none hath answere but in the same ; 
or in the common toongs of Greeke and Latin, by hir sacred 
lips pronounced. That the best by hir patterne desire to 
doe as much, I doubt not; but I doubt how they can 
without such helpe, and that such helpe was to be had till 
now. I denie: yet doe I understand that a gentleman of 
worshipful account, well travelled, well conceited, and well 
experienced in the Italian, hath in this very kinde taken 
great pains, and made as great proofes of his inestimable 
worth. Glad would I be to see that worke abroad; some 
sight whereof gave me twenty yeeres since the first light to 
this. But since he suppresseth his, for private respects, or 
further perfection, nor he, nor others will (I hope) prize this 
the lesse. I could here enter into a large discourse of the 
Italian toong, and of the teachers and teachin i thereof, and 
shew the ease and facilities of it, with setting downe some 
few, yea very few observations whereunto the Italian toong 
may be reduced: which some of good sort and experience 
have merrily compared to jugling-tricks, ail which afore a 
man know or discover how they are done, one would judge 
to be very hard and difficult; but after a man hath seene 
them and knowes them, they are deemed but slight and 
easie. And I was once purposed for the benefite of ail 
learners to have done it, and to have shewed why through 
my Dictionarie I have in all verbs of the first conjugation 
onely set downe the Infinitive moode, except it be of fower 
irregular verbes, and wherefore in ail of the seconde and 
thirde conjugations I have noted besides the Infinitive 
moode, the first person singular of the present-tence of the 
Indicative moode, the first person singular of the first 
preterperfect-tence of the Indicative and the participle. 
And why in the verbes of the fourth conjugation, I have 


besides the Infinitive moode, the participle, the first person 
singular of the present-tence of the Indicative moode of 
some very few, and not of ail, and how by those fewe onely 
one may frame ail the persons of ail the tences of ail the 
verbes in the Italian toong ; without the knowledge of which, 
and of those few observations glanced at before, no man can 
or shall ever learne to speake or write true ltalian in 
England: But that I understand there be some that are 
perswaded, yea and affirme, that nothing can be set down 
either by me, or any else that they have not or knowe not 
before ; and I am informed, that some would not be ashamed 
to protest they knewe as much before : and therefore contrarie 
to my first resolution I forbeare to doe it, grieving that for 
their sakes the gentle reader and learner shall be barred of 
so necessarie a scale of the Italian toong. If these, or others 
thinke of this no such paines, little price, or lesse profit then 
I talke of, I onely wish, they felt but halfe my paines for it ; 
or let them leave this, and rie themselves to the like taske, 
and then let the fruites of our labors, and the reapers of the 
fruites judge betwixt us whose paines hath sorted to best 
perfection : which ere long (if God sende me life, and blesse 
these labors) I meane to perfect with addition of the French 
and Latine, and with the wordes of some twenty good 
Italian auctors, that I could never obtaine the sight of, and 
hope shortly to enjoy: And I intend also to publish and 
annexe unto this, an Alphabeticall English Dictionarie, that 
any man knowing but the English word, shall presently 
finde the ltalian for it. Meane-while I wish to thee, as of me 
thou shalt deserve, and wish of thee as I knowe of thee I 
have deserved. Resolute 



IN the blessed name ofGod the Father my gracious Creator 
and Maker, of God the Sonne Jesus Christ my merciful 
Savyo r and Redeemer, and of God the Iolie Ghost three 
persons and one ever liveing and omnipotent God, in unity 
and Trinity my most loving Comforter and preserver Amen. 
1 John Florio of Fulham in the Countie of Middlesex 
Eq re, being of good health and sound minde and perfect 
memory, hearty thankes bee ever ascribed and given therefore 
unto Almighty God, And well in remembering and knowing 
that nothing is more certayne unto mortall man than death 
and noe one thing more uncertayne then is the houre therof, 
doe make appoint pronounce and declare this my Testament 
therin fully contayning my last direct and unrevocable will 
and intention in manner and forme following; That is to 
say, First and principally as duty and Christianity willeth 
mee I most heartily and penitently sorrowfull for all my 
sinnes committ and recommend my soule into the mercifull 
handes of Almighty God, assuredly trusting and faithfully 
beleeving by the onely meritts bitter passion precious blood 
and glorious death of the immaculate Lambe Jesus Christ 
lais Sonne, to have full remission and absolute forgiveness of 
all my sinnes whatsoever, and after this transitory lire to 
lire and raigne xvith him in his most blessed Kingdome of 
heaven. As for my wretched Body I committe the same as 
earth to earth and dust to dust to be buried in such decent 
order as to my deare Wife and by my executors here under- 
named shalbee thought meete and convenient. And as 
touching the disposing and ordering of all and whatsoever 
such goodes cattle, chattle, Leases, monie, plate, jewells, 


bookcs, apparrell, bedding, hangings, peawter, brasse, house- 
hold stuffe moveables, immoveables and all other things 
whatsoever named or unnamed, specifide or unspecifide, 
wherwith my most gracious God hath beene pleased to 
endowe mee with or hereafter shall of his infinite mercy bee 
pleased to bestowe or conferre upon me in this transitory lire, 
I will appoint give order dispose and bequeath all and every 
part and parcel of the same firmely and unalterably to stand 
in manner and forme following, That is to say, Item, I give 
and bequeath unto my daughter Aurelia Molins the Wed- 
ding Ring wherewith I married ber mother, being aggrieved 
at my very heart that by reason of my poverty I ara hot able 
to leave ber anything els. Item, I give and bequeath as a 
poore token of my love to my sonne in law James Molins, a 
faire black velvett deske embroidered with seede pearles and 
with a silver and guilt inkhorne and dust box therin, that 
was Queen Anne's. Item, I give and bequeath unto the 
right honourable my sigulare and even honoured good Lord 
William Earle of Pembroke Lord Chamberlaine to the 
Kings most excellent maiestie and one of his royal counsell 
of state (if at my death he shall then be living) all my 
Italian, French and Spanish bookes, as well printed as un- 
printed, being in number about Three hundred and fortie, 
namely my new and perfect dictionary, as also my telme 
dialogues in Italian and English and my unbound volume of 
divers written collections and rapsodies, most heartilie 
entreating his Honorable Lordshippe (as hee once promised 
mee) to accept of them as a sign and token of my service 
and affection to his honor and for my sake to place them in 
his library, either at Wilton or else at Baynards Castle at 
London, humbly desiring him to give way and favourable 
assistance that my dictionarie and dialogues may bee printed 
and the profitt therofaccrud unto my wife. Item, I doe likewise 
give and bequeath unto his noble Lordship the Corinne Stone 
as a jewell fitt for a Prince which Ferdinando the great Duke 
of Tuscanie sent as a most precious gift (among divers 


others) unto Queen Anne of blessed memory; the use and 
vertue wherof is written in two pieces of paper, both in 
Italian and English being in a little box with the Stone, 
most humbly beseeching his honour (as I right confidently 
hope and trust hee will in charity doe if neede require) to take 
my poore and deere wife into his protection and not surfer 
her to be wrongfully molested bF any enemie of myne, and 
also in her extremity to afforde her his helpe good worde 
and assistance to my Lord Treasurer, that she may be paFed 
my wages and the arrearages of that which is unpayed or 
shall bee behind at my death. The test the residue and 
remainder of all whatsoever and singular my goods, cattles, 
chattles, jewells, plate, debts, leases, money, or monie worth, 
household stuffe, utensills, English bookes, moveables or 
immoveables, named or hOt named, and things whatsoever 
by mee belote hOt given disposed or bequeathed (provided 
that my debts bee paid and my funerall discharged). I 
wholly give, fully bequeath, absolutely leave, assigne and 
unalterably" consigne unto my deerly beloved wife Rose Florio, 
most heartily greiving and ever sorrowing that I cannot give 
or leave her more in requitall of her tender love, loving care 
painfull dilligence, and continuall labour, to me and of mee in 
all my fortunes and many sicknesses ; then whome never had 
husband a more loving wife, painfull nurce, or comfortable 
consorte, And I doe make institute, ordaine, appoint and 
name the right Reverend Father in God, Theophilus Feild 
Lord bishoppe of Landaffe and Mr. Richard Cluet Doctor 
of Divinity vicar and preacher of the word of God at 
Fulham, both my much esteemed, dearely beloved and 
truely honest good frendes, my sole and onely Executors and 
overseers; And I doe give to each of them for their paines 
an ould greene velvett deske with a silver inke and dust box 
in each of them that were sometymes Queene Annes my 
Soveraigne Mistrisse, entreating both to a«ept of them as a 
token of my hearty affection towards them, and to excuse 
my poverty which disableth mee to requite the trouble, 


paines, and courtesie, which I confidently beleeve they will 
charitably and for Gods sake undergoe in advising directing 
and helping my poore and deere wife in executing of this 
my last and unrevocable will and testament, if any should 
be soe malicious or unnaturall as to crosse or question the 
same; And I doe utterly revoke and for ever renounce, 
frustrate, disanull, cancell and make void, all and whatsoever 
former wills, legacies, bequests, promises, guifts, executors 
or overseers (if it should happen that anie bee forged or 
suggested for untill this tyme, I never writt made or finished 
any but this onely) And I will appoint and ordaine that this 
and none but this onely written all wîth mine owne hand, 
shall stand in full force and vigor for my last and unrevoc- 
able will and Testament, and none other nor otherwise. As 
for the debts that I owe the greatest and onelie is upon an 
obligatory writing of myne owne hand which my daughter 
Aurelia Molins with importunity wrested from me of about 
threescore pound, wheras the truth, and my conscience 
telleth mee, and soe knoweth her conscience, it is but thirty- 
four pound or therabouts, But let that passe, since I was 
soe unheedy, as to make and acknowledge the said writing, 
I ara willing that it bee paid and discharged in this forme 
and manner, My sonne in lawe (as daughter his wife 
knoweth full well) bath in his bandes as a pawne, a faire 
gold ring of mine, with thirteene faire table diamonds 
therein enchased; which cost Queene Anne my gracious 
Mistrisse seaven and forty pounds starline, and for which I 
might many tymes have had forty pounds readie money: 
upon the said ring my sonne in the presence of his wife lent 
me Tenne pound. I desire him and pray him to take the 
overplus of the said Ring in parte of payment, as also a leaden 
Ceasterne which hee hath of myne standing in his yard at his 
London-house that cost mee at a porte-sale fortie shillings, 
as also a silver candle cup with a cover worth about forty 
shillings which I left at his house being sicke there ; desiring 
my sonne and daughter that their whole debt may bee made 


up and they satisfied with selling the lease of my house in 
Shoe lane, and soe accquitt and discharge my poore wife 
who as yet knoweth nothing of his debt. Moreover I 
entreat my deare wife that if at my death my servant Artur 
[blank] shall chance to bee with mee and in my service, that 
for my sake she give him such poore doubletts, breeches, 
barres, and bootes as I shall leave, and therwithall one of my 
ould cloakes soe it bee not lyned with velvett. In witnesse 
whereof I the said John Florio to this my last will and 
Testament (written every sillable with myne owne hande, 
and with long and mature deliberation digested, contaynîng 
foure sheetes of pal»er, the first of eight and twenty lines, the 
second of nine and twenty, the third of nyne and twenty 
and the fourth of six lines) have putt, sert, written and 
affixed my name and usual seale of my armes. The 
twentyth day of July in the yeare of our Lord and Savyour 
Jesus Christ 1625, and in the first yeare of the raigne of our 
Soveraigne Lord and King (whom God preserve) Charles the 
First of that naine of England, Scotland, France and Ireland 
King. By mee John Florio being, thankes bee ever given 
to my most gracious God, in perfect sence and memory. 
Proved I June 1626 by Rose Florio the relict, the 
executors named in the Will for certain reasons renouncing 


FLORIO was eighty years of age at his death in I625. From significant re- 
ferences by Shakespeare, in tt«nry IV., to Falstaff's age, I ha-e long been of 
the opinion that Florio was more than forty-five years old in 1598 , when the 
b'irst Part of this play was revised and the Second 19arl written ; yet if the age of 
fifty-eight, which Florio gives himself in the medallion round his picture in the 
16x I edition of his l/Vorld« of l/Vord«s is to be believed, he was only forty-five in 
598. I have now found Anthony Wood's authority for dating his birth in 1545. 
In Reggslriuttt Universilatus Oxon., vol. ii., by Andrew Clark, I find: 
" ISt May ,58, Magd. Co., John Florio, oet. 36, serviens mei Barnes." 
In a copy of Florio's first edition of his tVorlde of tVordes in my library, which 
evidently belonged to his friend William Godolphin, as his naine is written in 
it, there is also written in an old hand, under Flofio's name on the title-page, 
"born 545." 


A(hilles Shield, 
Admiral's company, the2 Lord, 6, IO, 
I2, 5o, 51, 52, 53 ; at Dorer, 54 ; 56, 
57, 59; identity between I585 and 
t589, 60 ; 65 ; under Hcnslowe, 73 ; 
78, 81, 82, 84, 14 
Aamemnon, 114 
Allen, Giles, 39, 43, 45, 75 
Alleyn, Edward, 6, 8, 9, lO, 14, 38, 61, 
62, 65, 70; manager of Strange's 
men, 77; 82, 85; as Roscius, 98; 
Alleyn, John, 8, 62 ; servant to the 
Lord Admiral, 63 ; Io2 
Alleyn, Richard, lO 5 
All's Vell that Ends Vell, 63, 17o, 
I71 , I93, I94, I95, 2o5 
Mnalomy of Absurdily, 98, 99 
Anna, Queen, 222 
Antonio, I34 
Arden, Mary, 21, 2 3 
Arden, Robert, 21 
Arden, the naine, 21 
Ardens of Parkhill, the, 2-22 
Armada, the, 2, I3I, I32 
Armado, 18, 82, 206 
Armin, Robert, 114 n. 
Arundell's players, Lord, 44, 48 
.4ve Cresar, 99 
Avisa, I29 
Aylmer, Bishop, I4o 
Bacon, Sir Francis, I85 
Barnes, Barnabe, 127 
Barnstaple, 9 
Biron, I34 
Blacke Bookes l][essenger, Tke, 47 n. 
Bodleian Library, I28 
Brandes, Georg, 8 n. 
Brayne, John, 39, 43, 75 
Brown, John, 26 
Brown, Ned, 47 

Browne, Robert, 8, 62, 65, lO2 
Browning, Robert, 19 
Bryan, George, 29, 55, 60, 83 
Burbage, Cuthbert, 44, 45, 75 
Burbage, James, 5, 9, I I, 38 ; as theatri- 
cal manager, 38 , 42 , 43, 45, 52 , 53, 
58, 63, 65, 67, 70, 75, lO6, I26 
Burbage, Richard, 5, 8, 14, 55, 66, 70, 
75, 77, 83, 26 
Burbie, Cuthbert, 96 n. 
Burghley, Lord, II, I7, 73, I54, I55, 
I73, I74 

Carey, tlenry, Lord Hunsdon, 5 ° 
Castle, William, parish clerk of Strat- 
lord, 68 
Cecil-Howard faction, 73 
Cecil, Sir Robert, 17, 154 , 175, 194, 
Cecil, Sir William, 157 
Censor, Public, 17 
Chamberlain's company, the Lord, lO, 
12, I3, 14, .38, 42, 52, 57, 59, 84 ; 
leave Henslowe, 86 
Chamberlain's musicians, the Lord, 54 ; 
at Coventry, 5 o, 60 
Chambers, E. K., 56 
Chandos portrait, the, 11o 
Chapman, George, 15, 23, 31, 92, 93, 
lO9, 114, 115, 119, 128, 167, 184, 
185, 186 
Chettle, Henry, 93, IiO, 151 
Choice of Valenlines, The, 128 
Chrisoganus, 12o 
Classical allusions, 79 
Cobham, Lord, 215, 2I 7 
Comedy of Beauty and Igousewifery, A, 
Comedy ofErrors, The, 8, 17, 83, 148 , 
I52, 17 2 
Contention and True Tragedie, The, 
8o, 147 


Cornwallis, Sir William, 221 
Coronel for my àlislress 1-'hiloso2hy, .4, 
124, I3O 
Court performances, 82 
Court records, 13 
Coventry, 9 
Coventry records, 54 
Cowdray House, 37, 165, 166 
Cranmer, Archl»ishop, 157 
Crosskeys, the, 51, 53, 55, 70, 72, 73, 
77, Si 
Curtain Theatre, the 6, 14, 39, 44, 46, 
4S, 5o, 51, 72, 74 
CymbelDw, 3 

Dame Pintpot, 198 
Daniel, Samuel, I59 , 162 
Davenant, Mistress, 123, 125, I$4 
Davenant, Sir Wiiliam, 36, 127 
Davies, John, $I, 9o-91 
Davison, William, I78 
]ge Çuiana Carmen îicttm, 1 I6 
Dekker, Thomas, 93, 218, lO3, lO4 
Derby, Countess of, 55 
Derby, Earl of', 55, I I5, 179 
Devereux, Dorothy, I39 
1)ialque of Dives, lO 4 
Diary, Henslowe's, 7, $, 67, 68, 75, 
77, 80, I27 
Doll Tearsheet, 197 
Dulwich College, 99 
" Duttons, The Two," 74 

EdwardL, 78, 80, $I, lol 
Edward II., 85, 88, i 31 
dwardI/l., IOI, 105, 131 
Edvard VI., I35, I43 
Elizabeth, Queen, as Cynthia, 119 
En,¢lish Dramatic Coman&s, 4 n., 
96 n. 
Ephe,neffs Chrisometra, 12o 
Essaies oflontaine, 191 , 222 
Eex, Earl oÇ 14o, I54, I75-78, 
Essex faction, 73 
Eutkymia atus, 
Evey Alan out of his UttOtt 

Faerie Queen, Tke, 161 
Fair Em, 95, lO5 
Falconbridge, as Sir John Perrot, 133-34 
Falstaf; Sir John, Il, 182, 2o6, 215 

Famous icories of Henry V., 200, 
O2, 2I 5 
Farewell lo Fol&, 95, I6S 
Feis, Jacob, 74 
Field, Theophilus, ]3ishop of Llandaff, 
First Fruiles, 92, 196 
Fleay, F. G., 66, 74, $0, 95, 96, lO7 
Fleetwood, Recorder, as an enemy of 
the players, I I ; 44, 46 ; as Burghley's 
gossip, 49 
Florio, John, 15 ; as Falstaff's original, 
18 ; 9I, 92, lO8 ; as Landulpho, 
122, 123; 125, 157-6o, 183-.91 ; as 
Parolles, I71, I93; 2Ol; sgns as 
"Resolute," 22 I 
Flucllen, I$, 19I 
Four Plays in One, 87 
Froude, James Anthony, 1, 16 

Gardiner, S. R., I, I6 
Golding, Arthur, 1 I8 
Gray's Inn, 156, 172 
Greene, Robert, 5, 12, 13, 14, I5, 30, 
35, 69, 8% 85, 88, 92, 94 ; as Roberto, 
lO3; lO6, IiO, II7, I3O , 15I, I69 
Greg, W. W., loi n. 
Groatswortlz of ll'it, A, 5, 15, lO2, 
IIO, Iii, I50 
Grooms of the Privy Chamber, 5 S 

Italliwell-Phillipps, J. O., 43, 45, 5 o, 
Hall' s Chroticles, 141 
Halpin, Rev. J. Il., I5, 159, 161 
ttamlet, 4, SI, 86, lO5, IO7, 198 
Harriot, Thomas, I I 5, I2O 
Hart, Joan, 36 
Hart, John, Lord Mayor of London» 
Harvey, Gabriel, 92 
Hatton, Sir Christopher, 138-39 , I4o 
Heneage, Sir Thomas 36 ; as Lafeu, 
I7I ; I89 
Henry IV., 8% 198 
2tlenry IV., l'arl Z., I99, 200, 2og, 
203 , 204 
Henry 1, Part IL, 32, 197 , 199, 203 
Hen.y Y., 80, 121 
I-Ienry VL, Part L, 7, 14, 77, 78, 13I, 
Henry Vl., Part lII., 7, $7, $8 
Henry VIII., 134, 135 

I ND EX 259 

Henslowe, Philip, 6, 8, lO, 11, 38, 59, 
61, 69, 70, $2 
Heralds, The College of, 32, 9o, 92 
Hi,hway to Heaven, The, lO 4 
Histriomastix, 93, 1o8, 114, 116, 117, 
115, 119, 167 
Holinshed's Chronides, 141 
I-Ionour of lhe Garter, 92, 113, 115, 
tIoward of Effingham's company, Lord 
Charles, at Ipswich, I591, 6o 
Howe's 4dditions to Slowe's C]tronides, 
" H. S.," 217-18, 219 
Hunsdon, Lord, 9, IO, 43, 46, 5 ° 
Hunsdon's company, Lord, 42, 45, 
48; at Ludlow, 49; 53, 55; dis- 
appear from records, 55 
Hyde, John, 43, 45 
Hymns to the Shadow of Night, 93, 
115, 116, 118, 124, 128, 186 

lliad, Homer's, 197 
lnlonsi Catones» I25 I26 2I 9 

Jacques, 134 
Jacquespierre, 2I 
"J. F.," 217-I8, 219 
James I., 186, 221 
Jaquenetta, 2o6 
Jeffes, Humphrey, 87, 147 
Jones, Richard, 8, 62, 65, to2 
Jonson, Ben, 9 o, 93, IOS, lO9, 
186, 220 


Keats, John, 19, 3 I 
Kempc, William, 29, 55, 60, 83, I26 
Kildare, Countess of, 166 
]inde hrearles l)reame, 15 O, 15 2 
JnffJohn, 8, 17, 34, 8o, 83, 131, 132, 
133, 139, I46, 15z, I7z 
A-ing Zear, 3 
Içinff of the Fairics, The, lO3, Io4 
Kyd, Thomas, lO7, II 7, 13I 

"Lanam and his fellowes," 51 
Laneham, John, 43, 51, 58 
Langley, William, 13 
Leases, Elizabethan, 43 
Lee, Sir Sidney, 6 n., 46 n. 
Leicester's company, Earl of, 5, 9, I3 ; 
at Stratford, 29; 40, 45; 52: at 
Dorer, 54 ; disappear from records, 
55; 55, 57, 58 , 59, 66, 67, $4 

Leicester, Earl of; death, 29 ; 49, 154, 
Leicester's musicians, Earl of, 9, 54 
Leicester Records, City of, 8 
Life of Jack lfïlton, 128 
Lodge, Thomas, 114 n. 
Loftus, Archbishop, 138 
Love's Labour's Lost, 8, Sa, 116, 119, 
izi, 152 , 166, 168, i7o, 197, zo6 
Love's Labour's IVon, 8, 83, IZ3, 16¢, 
I7o, I71 
Lucrece, 10, 82; dedication, 128; I53 
Lucy, Sir Thomas, alleged deer pre- 
serves» 32 

Malvolio, I82 
Manners, Roger, 156, 179 
Markham, Gervase, 128 
Marlowe, Christopher, 12, 30, 8o, 85, 
88; as "Merlin," 95; as "the 
cobbler," IOI ; lO 7, I3I 
Marston, John, 93, I°9, I19, 185, 186 
Martin bIarprelate Controversy, 72 
larlin's z]IontA's ,][ind, 51 
Mary, Queen, I35-36 
Mary, Queen of Scots, 178 
Master of the Revels' company, the, 64 
[easure for Measure, 198 
Menalcas, 161 
l][enaflhon, Greene's, 67, 98, lO2, 107, 
3[erchant of Venice, TAe, 121 
Meres, Francis, 3 I, 193, 199 
2llerry lVives of lVindsor, 171 
2][etamorphosis of Ajax, 5 I 
z]lidsummer Night's Dream, A, 8, 83, 
121, I52 , 168 
Miles, Robert, 76 
Minto, Prof. William, 126 
" Mirabella," 16I, 162 
Montague, Lady, 169-7o 
Montague, Viscount, 155, I69-7o 
Aloral of J[an's ll'it, lO 4 
Morgann, Maurice, 181, 2o2 
Murray, John Tucker, 9 n., 4I n. 

Nashe, Thomas, 7, 12, I4, 67, 69, 78 
80, 92, 94, 98, IOO, 1o2, Io4, lO7 
lO8, I17, I28, I3o, 169 
Never loo Lale lo ci[end, 98, lO 9 
]Vews Out of 19urffatory, 51 
IVichol's 19ro, oEesses, 168-69 
Nightvork, Jane, 2I 3 
2Vine ll'orlhies, The, I95 , 197 


Northumberland, Earl of, 115 
Nottingham's company, Lord, 127 

Oldcastle, Sir John, 2o% 215, 217 
O'Roughan, Denis, 38 
Outlines for the Life of Shakes;beare, 
OvioYs Banquet of Sense, Izo, Iz4, 13o 
Ovid's Elegies, x x 8 
Oxford, Earl of, 19o 

talladis Tamia, x99 
Parolles, I8, 17 I, 206 
Peckham, Edward, 75 
l'eele, George, 12, 3I, 78, 79, 8o, 8x, 
9 z, 98; asTully, 98 , 99; lOI, I13, 
II7, I3I 
Pembroke, Earl of, I36, I48 
Pembroke's company, Earl of, 7, IZ, 
I3, I4, 57, 7I, 75, 76° 84, 85 ; pawn 
their apparel, 86 ; plays, 86 ; IO7, 
tcnelope's IVeb, lO6 
Perrot, Sir John, 34-39 ; recalled from 
Ireland, 138; death of, 39 
Perrot, Sir Thomas, 139 
Phillip II. of Spain, 138 , 139 
tierce 19enniless, 5 I 
Pipe Rolls, the, 56, 73 
Plague, the, 85 
Planetomachia, xo6 
Pope, Thomas, z 9, 55, 6o, 83 
Privy Council, Acts of the, 56, 73 
Prodtal Ckild, The, 12o, 23 
tgrodigal Son, The, 123 
Puritanism, I32 

Queen's company, Old Plays of the, 14, 
Queen's company, the, 6, x x, 43, 46, 
48, 5 ° , 5 x, 53, 5 S, 59, 75, 84, 131, 
146, 147 
Queen's progress to Cowdray and Tich- 
field, the, 37,  19, 165 
Queen's tumblers, the, 56 n. 
Quickly, Mistress, 20% 2o4 

Raleigh, Sir Walter, xlS, 154 , 175, I85 
Richard I_.r., 8, 80, 83, 88, x3i, x46 
Richard III., 8, 80, 83 
omeo andJuliet, 152 
"Rosalinde," I6O, I6I, 162 
Roscius, 98, IO2 
Rose, Edward, x42 

Rose Theatre, the, 6, lO, 11, 5 x, 59, 
61, 69, 70, 76 , 8I, I46 
Rowe, Nieholas, 67, 127,215, 216 
Roydon, Matthew, 5, 3 x, 93, lO9, 
II4n. , x24, x25, 167, x68, 184, 2o% 

Saexberht, 20 
Saunder, Nicholas, 
Scapula, -4 
Schlegel, 98 
School of Shakespeare, 95 
Second 'ruiles, I23, 64, 196, 203, 205, 
2O6 ; extracts from, 207-14 
Seven Zgeadly Sins, The, 47 
Shakespeare families, I9 ; the naine, 19 
Shakespeare, Hamnet, 6 
Shakespeare, John, I, 5 ; applies for 
grant of arms, 32 
Shakespeare, Judith, 26 
Shakespeare, Richard, of Snitterfield, 
Shakespeare, William ; as t3urbage 
servitor, 3 : brothers and sisters of, 
19 : Norman origin, x9 ; his mother, 
22 ; as Johannesfactotum, 22 ; boy- 
hood, 24 ; marriage, 26 ; leaves Strat- 
lord, 28 ; alleged poaching adventure, 
3o ; return to Stratford in x597, 3o 
grant of arms, 3 ° ; " Shakespeare's 
boys," 35; "rude groome, 35 : a 
bonded servitor, 67; early training 
with Lord Itunsdon's and the Lord 
Admiral's companies, 68; in kingly 
parts, 81 ; co-operates with Marlowe, 
88 ; leader of Pembroke's company, 
88; Groom of the Privy Chamber, 
9I ; as an "idiot art-toaster," 
alluded to as a serving man, lOS; 
as Mullidor in Never too Zate, lO9 ; 
Chandos portrait of, l XO; rejoins 
Chamberlain's company, 126 : in- 
dicated as "W. S.," an "old 
actor," 129; distrust of Florio, x87 
Shallow, Justice, 2x 3 
Shaxper, 19 
Sheffield's company, Lord, 62, 6à 
Shepkeards Calendar, T/te, x59 , 16o, 
Shepherd's Slumber, Tke, x68 
Sidley, Ralph, lO9 
Sidney, Lady, x 4o, 178 
Sidney, Sir Robert, 216 
Simpson, Richard, 74, 95, lr4, 

INDEX 261 

Sinkler, John, 87, 147 
Smith, Mr. ]. M., 36 
Smithe, Humprey, 47 
Sonnets, The, 17, 82 
Southampton, Countess of, ITI , I89 
Southampton, Earl of, i3, i7, I8, 36, 
74, 91 ; as Mavortius, 121 ; i24, I26 ; 
bounty to Shakespeare, i27; i53 , 
156, 164, 167, 172 ; early relations 
with Essex, 176 ; as Bertram, 189 ; 
194, 216 
Spencer, Gabriel, 86, 87 ; death of, 90 ; 
Spenser, Edmund, 3 o, I62 
Spicer, Rose, I59-6o 
Stanhope, Sir Thomas, I55 
Stanley, Sir William, I38 
Star Chamber, the, 45 
Stopes, Mrs. C. C., 39n., 76 
Strange, Lord, 55 
Strange's company, Lord, 6, 9, II, I2, 
52 , 53, 57, 59, 74, 82, 83, 95, lO7, 
126, 147 
Strange's tumblers, Lord, 6, 55, 56, 
59, 67, 84 
Stratford Free Grammar School, 23 
Stmtford-on-Avon, 5, 25 
Sussex's company, Earl of, 12, 14, 57 ; 
disrupted, 86-87 
Swan Theatre. the, 13 
" Symons and his fellowes," 56 

Talbot Scenes, 7, 14, 78, 80 
Taming'of a Shrew, The, 86, lO2, lO5, 
Tarleton, Richard, 43, 5 o, 96 
Tears of Peace, The, II6, I2O, 
Tempest, The, 3 
"Temple Garden" Scene, the, 79 
Theatre, the, 6, 9, I I, 36, 39, 44, 46, 
48, 5 o, 51, 52, 53, 72, 75, 77, 81, lO6 
Three Zadies of London, The, 95 
Three Lords and Three Ladies, The, 
Tichfield House, Queen's progress to, 
37, 165 
Tilney, Edmund, Master of the Revels, 
43, 59, 96 

Timon of Athens, 3 
Titus Andronicus, 12, 14, 86 
Titus and Vesasian, 12 
Troilus and Cressida, 114, 12o, 195 , 
Troublesome A'aine of Z'ing John, The, 
132, 140, 143 , 146 
True Tragedie of the 29uke of York, 7"/te, 
7, 85, 87, 88, 113, 147 
Twelfth Nigkt, I2I 
Twelve Labours of I-Iercules, The, lO 3 
Two Gentlemen of Verona, The, 8, 83, 
Tyburn « T," 9o 

Valdracko, lO6 
l/'enus and Adonis, 13, 82, 114, 118, 
119 , 127, 128, 151 , 152 , 153 , 18o 
Venus' Traedy, 106 
Vere, Lady Elizabeth, 155 , 179 
Vernon, Elizabeth, 177, 18o, 194 , 198 
Volumnia, a reflection of Shakespeare's 
mother, 23 

Wallop, Sir Ilenry, I38 
Walsingham, Sir Francis, I78 
War of the Theatres, the, I5 
Wars of the Roses, 79 
Williams, Sir Roger, as Fluellen, 191 , 
IVillobie his Avisa, 93, 125, 129, 184, 
IS6, 187 
Wilson, Robert, 43, 58, 95, 96, 98 
lIffnter's Talc, A, 3 
Wood, Anthony, 157 
Woodward, Joan, 9 
Worcester, Earl of 61, 63, 64 
Worcester's company, Earl of, 8, 9, 
IO, 61, 62 ; in trouble at Ipswich 
and Leicester, 63 
IVorldeof [Vordes, A, 15, 94, 108, 158 , 
185, 188, 196 , 217 
Wriothesley, Henry. See Earl of 
Wriothesley, Thomas, Earl of South- 
ampton, 153 

¥orke, Edmund, Jesuit, 18o