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James Russell Lowell, Among my books, Spenser (search)
y seem valid to any one who knows the poet. It is that it obliged him to dilate the thing to be expressed, however unimportant, with trifling and tedious circumlocutions, namely, Faery Queen, II. II. 44:— Now hath fair Phoebe with her silver face Thrice seen the shadows of this nether world, Sith last I left that honorable place, In which her royal presence is enrolled. That is, it is three months since I left her palace. Observations on Faery Queen, Vol. I. pp. 158, 159. Mr. Hughes also objects to Spenser's measure, that it is closed always by a fullstop, in the same place, by which every stanza is made as it were a distinct paragraph. (Todd's Spenser, II. XLI.) But he could hardly have read the poem attentively, for there are numerous instances to the contrary. Spenser was a consummate master of versification, and not only did Marlowe and Shakespeare learn of him, but I have little doubt that, but for the Faery Queen, we should never have had the varied majesty of