AND WORTHELY HONORED
LADY, THE LADY WALSINGHAM,
one of the Ladies of her Majesties Bed-chamber.
I present your Ladiship with the last affections of the first two
Lovers that ever Muse shrinde in the Temple of Memorie; being drawne
by strange instigation to employ some of my serious time inso trifeling
a subject, which yet made the first Author, divine Musaeus, eternall.
And were it not that wee must subject our accounts of these common
received conceits to servile custome; it goes much against my hand to
signe that for a trifling subject, on which more worthines of soule hath
been shewed, and weight of divine wit, than can vouchsafe residence in
the leaden gravitie of any Mony-Monger; in whose profession all
serious subjects are concluded. But he that shuns trifles must shun the
world; out of whose reverend heapes of substance and austeritie, I can,
and will, ere long, single, or tumble out as brainles and passionate
fooleries, as ever panted in the bosome of the most ridiculous Lover.
Accept it therfore (good Madam) though as a trifle, yet as a serious
argument of my affection: for to bee thought thankefull for all free and
honourable favours, is a great summe of that riches my whole thrift
Such uncourtly and sillie dispositions as mine, whose contentment
hath other objects than profit or glorie; are as glad, simply for the
naked merit of vertue, to honour such as advance her, as others that
are hired to commend with deepeliest politique bountie.
It hath therefore adjoynde much contentment to my desire of your
true honour to heare men of desert in Court, adde to mine owne know-
ledge of your noble disposition, how glady you doe your best to preferre
their desires; and have as absolute respect to their meere good parts,
as if they came perfumed and charmed with golden incitements. And
this most sweet inclination, that flowes from the truth and eternitie of
Nobles; assure your Ladiship doth more suite your other Ornaments,
and makes more to the advancement of your Name, and happines of
your proceedings, then if(like others) you displaied Ensignes of state
and sowrenes in your forehead; made smooth with nothing but sensualitie
This poore Dedication (in figure of the other unitie betwixt Sir
Thomasand your selfe) hath rejoynd you with him, my honoured best
friend, whose continuance of ancient kindnes to my still-obscured
estate, though it cannot encrease my love to him, which hath ever been
entirely circulare; yet shall it encourage my deserts to their utmost
requitall, and make my hartie gratitude speake; to which the
unhappines of my life hath hetherto been
uncomfortable and painfull dumbnes. By your Ladiships vowd in
most wished service:
THE ARGUMENT OF THE THIRD SESTYADLeander to the envious light
Resignes his night-sports with the night,
And swims the Hellespont againe;
Thesme the Deitie soveraigne
Of Customes and religious rites
Appeares, improving his delites
Since Nuptiall honors he neglected;
Which straight he vowes shall be effected.
Faire Hero left Devirginate
Waies, and with furie wailes her state:
But with her love and womans wit
She argues, and approveth it.
New light gives new directions, Fortunes new
To fashion our indevours that ensue,
More harsh (at lest more hard) more grave and hie
Our subject runs, and our sterne Muse must flie.
Loves edge is taken off, and that light flame,
Those thoughts, joyes, longings, that before became
High unexperienst blood, and maids sharpe plights,
Must now grow staid, and censure the delights,
That being enjoyd aske judgement; now we praise,
As having parted: Evenings crowne the daies.
And now ye wanton loves, and yong desires,
Pied vanitie, the mint of strange Attires;
Ye lisping Flatteries, and obsequious Glances,
Relentfull Musicks, and attractive Dances,
And you detested Charmes constraining love,
Shun loves stolne sports by that these Lovers prove.
By this the Soveraigne of Heavens golden fires,
And yong Leander, Lord of his desires,
Together from their lovers armes arose:
Leander into Hellespontus throwes
His Hero-handled bodie, whose delight
Made him disdaine each other Epethite.
And as amidst the enamourd waves he swims,
The God of gold of purpose guilt his lims,
That this word guilt, including double sence,
The double guilt of his Incontinence,
Might be exprest, that had no stay t'employ
The treasure which the Love-god let him joy
In his deare Hero, with such sacred thrift,
As had beseemd so sanctified a gift:
But like a greedie vulgar Prodigall
Would on the stock dispend, and rudely fall
Before his time, to that unblessed blessing,
Which for lusts plague doth perish with possessing.
“Joy graven in sence, like snow in water wasts;”
“Without preserve of vertue, nothing lasts.”
What man is he that with a welthie eie,
Enjoyes a beautie richer than the skie,
Through whose white skin, softer then soundest sleep,
With damaske eyes, the rubie blood doth peep,
And runs in branches through her azure vaines,
Whose mixture and first fire, his love attaines;
Whose both hands limit both Loves deities,
And sweeten humane thoughts like Paradise;
Whose disposition silken is and kinde,
Directed with an earth-exempted minde;
Who thinks not heaven with such a love is given?
And who like earth would spend that dower of heaven,
With ranke desire to joy it all at first?
What simply kils our hunger, quencheth thirst,
Clothes but our nakednes, and makes us live,
Praise doth not any of her favours give:
But what doth plentifully minister
Beautious apparell and delicious cheere,
So orderd that it still excites desire,
And still gives pleasure freenes to aspire,
The palme of Bountie, ever moyst preserving:
To loves sweet life this is the courtly carving.
Thus Time, and all-states-ordering Ceremonie
Had banisht all offence: Times golden Thie
Upholds the flowne bodie of the earth
In sacred harmonie, and every birth
Of men, and actions makes legitimate,
Being usde aright; “The use of time is Fate.”
Yet did the gentle flood transfer once more,
This prize of Love home to his fathers shore;
Where he unlades himselfe of that false welth
That makes few rich; treasures composde by stelth;
And to his sister kinde Hermione,
(Who on the shore kneeld, praying to the sea
For his returne) he all Loves goods did show
In Hero seasde for him, in him for Hero.
His most kinde sister all his secrets knew,
And to her singing like a shower he flew,
Sprinkling the earth, that to their tombs tooke in
Streames dead for love to leave his ivorie skin,
Which yet a snowie fome did leave above,
As soule to the dead water that did love;
And from thence did the first white Roses spring,
(For love is sweet and faire in every thing)
And all the sweetned shore as he did goe,
Was crownd with odrous roses white as snow.
Love-blest Leander was with love so filled,
That love to all that toucht him he instilled.
And as the colours of all things we see,
To our sights powers communicated bee:
So to all objects that in compasse came
of any sence he had, his sences flame
Flowd from his parts, with force so virtuall,
It fir'd with sence things meere insensuall.
Now (with warme baths and odours comforted)
When he lay downe he kindly kist his bed,
As consecrating it to Heros right,
And vowd thereafter that what ever sight
Put him in minde of Hero, or her blisse,
Should be her Altar to prefer a kisse.
Then laid he forth his late inriched armes,
In whose white circle Love writ all his charmes,
And made his characters sweet Heros lims,
When on his breasts warme sea she sideling swims.
And as those armes (held up in circle) met,
He said; see sister, Heros Carquenet,
Which she had rather weare about her neck,
Then all the jewels that dot Juno deck.
But as he shooke with passionate desire,
To put in flame his other secret fire,
A musick so divine did pierce his eare,
As never yet his ravisht sence did heare:
When suddenly a light of twentie hews
Brake through the roofe, and like the Rainbow views
Amazd Leander; in whose beames came downe
The Goddesse Ceremonie, with a Crowne
Of all the stars, and heaven with her descended.
Her flaming haire to her bright feete extended,
By which hung all the bench of Deities;
And in a chaine, compact of eares and eies,
She led Religion; all her bodie was
Cleere and transparent as the purest glasse:
For she was all presented to the sence;
Devotion, Order, State, and Reverence,
Her shadowes were; Societie, Memorie;
All which her sight made live, her absence die.
A rich disparent Pentackle she weares,
Drawne full of circles and strange characters:
Her face was changeable to everie eie;
One way lookt ill, another graciouslie;
Which while men viewd, they cheerfull were and holy:
But looking off, vicious, and melancholy:
The snakie paths to each observed law,
Did Policie in her broad bosome draw:
One hand a Mathematique Christall swayes,
Which gathering in one line a thousand rayes
From her bright eyes, Confusion burnes to death,
And all estates of men distinguisheth.
By it Morallitie and Comelinesse,
Themselves in all their sightly figures dresse.
Her other hand a lawrell rod applies,
To beate back Barbarisme, and Avarice,
That followd eating earth, and excrement
And humane lims; and would make proud ascent
To seates of Gods, were Ceremonie slaine;
The Howrs and Graces bore her glorious traine,
And all the sweetes of our societie
Were Spherde, and treasurde in her bountious eie.
Thus she appeard, and sharply did reprove
Leanders bluntnes in his violent love;
Tolde him how poore was substance without rites,
Like bils unsignd; desires without delites;
Like meates unseasond; like ranke corne that growes
On Cottages, that none or reapes or sowes:
Not being with civill forms confirm'd and bounded,
For humane dignities and comforts founded:
But loose and secret all their glories hide,
Feare fils the chamber, darknes decks the Bride.
She vanisht, leaving pierst Leanders hart
With sence of his unceremonious part,
In which with plaine neglect of Nuptiall rites,
He close and flatly fell to his delites:
And instantly he vowd to celebrate
All rites pertaining to his maried state.
So up he gets and to his father goes,
To whose glad eares he doth his vowes disclose:
The Nuptials are resolv'd with utmost powre,
And he at night would swim to Heros towre.
From whence he ment to Sestus forked Bay
To bring her covertly, where ships must stay,
Sent by his father throughly rigd and mand,
To waft her safely to Abydus Strand.
There leave we him, and with fresh wing pursue
Astonisht Hero, whose most wished view
I thus long have forborne, because I left her
So out of countuance, and her spirits bereft her.
“To looke of one abasht is impudence,”
“When of sleight faults he hath too deepe a sence.”
Her blushing het her chamber: she lookt out,
And all the ayre she purpled round about,
And after it a foule black day befell,
Which ever since a red morne doth foretell,
And still renewes our woes for Heros wo:
And foule it prov'd, because it figur'd so
The next nights horror, which prepare to heare;
I faile if it prophane your daintiest eare.
Then thou most strangely-intellectuall fire,
That proper to my soule hast power t'inspire
Her burning faculties, and with the wings
Of thy unspheared flame visitst the springs
Of spirits immortall; Now (as swift as Time
Doth follow Motion) finde th'eternall Clime
Of his free soule, whose living subject stood
Up to the chin in the Pyerean flood,
And drunke to me halfe this Musean stone,
Inscribing it to deathles Memorie:
Confer with it, and make my pledge as deepe,
That neithers draught be consecrate to sleepe.
Tell it how much his late desires I tender,
(If yet it know not) and to light surrender
My soules darke ofspring, willing it should die
To loves, to passions, and societie.
Sweet Hero left upon her bed alone,
Her maidenhead, her vowes, Leander gone,
And nothing with her but a violent crew
Of new come thoughts that yet she never knew,
Even to her selfe a stranger; was much like
Th'Iberian citie that wars hand did strike
By English force in princely Essex guide,
When peace assur'd her towres had fortifide;
And golden-fingred India had bestowd
Such wealth on her, that strength and Empire flowd
Into her Turrets; and her virgin waste
The wealthie girdle of the Sea embraste:
Till our Leander that made Mars his Cupid,
For soft love-sutes, with iron thunders chid:
Swum to her Towers, dissolv'd her virgin zone;
Lead in his power, and made Confusion
Run through her streets amazd, that she supposde
She had not been in her owne walls inclosde:
But rapt by wonder to some forraine state,
Seeing all her issue so disconsolate:
And all her peacefull mansions possest
With wars just spoyle, and many a forraine guest
From every corner driving an enjoyer,
Supplying it with power of a destroyer.
So far'd fayre Hero in th'expugned fort
Of her chast bosome, and of every sort
Strange thoughts possest her, ransacking her brest
For that that was not there, her wonted rest.
She was a mother straight and bore with paine,
Thoughts that spake straight and wisht their mother slaine;
She hates their lives, and they their own and hers:
Such strife still growes where sin the race prefers.
“Love is a golden bubble full of dreames,”
“That waking breakes, and fils us with extreames.”
She mus'd how she could looke upon her Sire,
And not shew that without, that was intire.
For as a glasse is an inanimate eie,
And outward formes imbraceth inwardlie:
So is the eye an animate glasse that showes
In-formes without us. And as Phoebus throwes
His beames abroad, though he in clowdes be closde,
Still glancing by them till he finde opposde,
A loose and rorid vapour that is fit
T'event his searching beames, and useth it
To forme a tender twentie-coloured eie,
Cast in a circle round about the skie.
So when our fine soule, Our bodies starre,
(That ever is in motion circulare)
Conceives a forme; in seeking to display it,
Through all Our clowdie parts, it doth convey it
Forth at the eye, as the most pregnant place,
And that reflects it round about the face.
And this event uncourtly Hero thought,
Her inward guilt would in her lookes have wrought:
For yet the worlds stale cunning she resisted
To beare foule thoughts, yet forge what lookes she listed,
And held it for a very sillie sleight,
To make a perfect mettall counterfeit:
Glad to disclaime her selfe; proud of an Art,
That makes the face a Pandar to the hart.
Those be the painted Moones, whose lights prophane
Beauties true Heaven, at full still in their wane.
Those be the Lapwing faces that still crie,
Here tis, when that they vow is nothing nie.
Base fooles, when every moorish fowle can teach
That which men thinke the height of humane reach.
But custome that the Apoplexie is
Of beddred nature and lives led amis,
And takes away all feeling of offence,
Yet brazde not Heros brow with impudence;
And this she thought most hard to bring to pas,
To seeme in counmance other then she was.
As if she had two soules; one for the face,
One for the hart; and that they shifted place
As either list to utter, or conceale
What they conceiv'd: or as one soule did deale
With both affayres at once, keeps and ejects
Both at an instant contrarie effects:
Retention and ejection in her powrs
Being acts alike: for this one vice of ours,
That forms the thought, and swaies the countenance,
Rules both our motion and our utterance.
These and more grave conceits toyld Heros spirits:
For though the light of her discoursive wits
Perhaps might finde some little hole to pas
Through all these worldly cinctures; yet (alas)
There was a heavenly flame incompast her;
Her Goddesse, in whose Phane she did prefer
Her virgin vowes; from whose impulsive sight
She knew the black shield of the darkest night
Could not defend her, nor wits subtilst art:
This was the point pierst Hero to the hart.
Who heavie to the death, with a deep sigh
And hand that languisht, tooke a robe was nigh,
Exceeding large, and of black Cypres made,
In which she sate, hid from the day in shade,
Even over head and face downe to her feete;
Her left hand made it at her bosome meete;
Her right hand leand on her hart-bowing knee,
Wrapt in unshapefull foulds twas death to see:
Her knee stayd that, and that her falling face,
Each limme helpt other to put on disgrace.
No forme was seene, where forme held all her sight:
But like an Embrion that saw never light:
Or like a scorched statue made a cole
With three-wingd lightning: or a wretched soule
Muffled with endles darknes, she did sit:
The night had never such a heavie spirit.
Yet might an imitating eye well see,
How fast her deere teares melted on her knee
Through her black vaile, and turnd as black as it,
Mourning to be her teares: then wrought her wit
With her broke vow, her Goddesse wrath, her fame,
All tooles that enginous despayre could frame:
Which made her strow the floore with her torne haire,
And spread her mantle peece-meale in the aire.
Like Joves sons club, strong passion strooke her downe,
And with a piteous shrieke inforst her swoune:
Her shrieke, made with another shrieke ascend
The frighted Matron that on her did tend:
And as with her owne crie her sence was slaine,
So with the other it was calde againe.
She rose and to her bed made forced way,
And layd her downe even where Leander lay:
And all this while the red sea of her blood
Ebd with Leander: but now turnd the flood,
And all her fleete of sprites came swelling in
With childe of saile, and did hot fight begin
With those severe conceits, she too much markt,
And here Leanders beauties were imbarkt.
He came in swimming painted all with joyes,
Such as might sweeten hell: his thought destroyes
All her destroying thoughts: she thought she felt
His heart in hers, with her contentions melt:
And chid her soule that it could so much erre,
To check the true joyes he deserv'd in her.
Her fresh heat blood cast figures in her eyes,
And she supposde she saw in Neptunes skyes
How her star wandred, washt in smarting brine
For her loves sake, that with immortall wine
Should be embat'd, and swim in more hearts ease,
Than there was water in the Sestian seas.
Then said her Cupid prompted spirit; shall I
Sing mones to such delightsome harmony?
Shall slick-tongde fame patcht up with voyces rude,
The drunken bastard of the multitude,
(Begot when father Judgement is away,
And gossip-like, sayes because others say,
Takes newes as if it were too hot to eate,
And spits it slavering forth for dog-fees meate)
Make me for forging a phantastique vow,
Presume to beare what makes grave matrons bow?
Good vowes are never broken with good deedes,
For then good deedes were bad: vowes are but seedes,
And good deeds fruits; even those good deedes that grow
From other stocks than from th'observed vow.
That is a good deede that prevents a bad:
Had I not yeelded, slaine my selfe I had.
Hero Leander is, Leander Hero:
Such vertue love hath to make one of two.
If then Leander did my maydenhead git,
Leander being my selfe I still retaine it.
We breake chast vowes when we live loosely ever:
But bound as we are, we live loosely never.
Two constant lovers being joynd in one,
Yeelding to one another, yeeld to none.
We know not how to vow, till love unblinde us,
And vowes made ignorantly never binde us.
Too true it is that when t'is gone men hate
The joyes as vaine they tooke in loves estate:
But that's, since they have lost the heavenly light
Should shew them way to judge of all things right.
When life is gone death must implant his terror,
As death is foe to life, so love to error.
Before we love how range we through this sphere,
Searching the sundrie fancies hunted here:
Now with desire of wealth transported quite
Beyond our free humanities delight:
Now with ambition climing falling towrs,
Whose hope to scale our feare to fall devours:
Now rapt with pastimes, pomp, all joyes impure;
“In things without us no delight is sure.”
But love with all joyes crownd, within doth sit;
O Goddesse pitie love and pardon it.
This spake she weeping: but her Goddesse eare
Burnd with too sterne a heat, and would not heare.
Aie me, hath heavens straight fingers no more graces
For such as Hero, then for homeliest faces?
Yet she hopte well, and in her sweet conceit
Waying her arguments, she thought them weight:
And that the logick of Leanders beautie,
And them together would bring proofes of dutie.
And if her soule, that was a skilfull glance
Of Heavens great essence, found such imperance
In her loves beauties; she had confidence
Jove lov'd him too, and pardond her offence.
“Beautie in heaven and earth this grace doth win,”
“It supples rigor, and it lessens sin.”
Thus, her sharpe wit, her love, her secrecie,
Trouping together, made her wonder why
She should not leave her bed, and to the Temple?
Her health sayd she must live; her sex, dissemble.
She viewd Leanders place, and wisht he were
Turnd to his place, so his place were Leander.
Aye me (sayd she) that loves sweet life and sence
Should doe it harme! my love had not gone hence,
Had he been like his place. O blessed place,
Image of Constancie. Thus my loves grace
Parts no where but it leaves some thing behinde
Worth observation: he renowmes his kinde.
His motion is like heavens Orbiculer:
For where he once is, he is ever there.
This place was mine: Leander now t'is thine;
Thou being my selfe, then it is double mine:
Mine, and Leanders mine, Leanders mine.
O see what wealth it yeelds me, nay yeelds him:
For I am in it, he for me doth swim.
Rich, fruitfull love, that doubling selfe estates
Elixer- likecontracts, though separates.
Deare place I kisse thee, and doe welcome thee,
As from Leander ever sent to mee.
The end of the third Sestyad.
THE ARGUMENT OF THE FOURTH SESTYADHero, in sacred habit deckt,
Doth private sacrifice effect.
Her Skarfs description wrought byfate,
Ostents, that threaten her estate.
The strange, yet Phisicall events,
Leanders counterfeit presents.
In thunder, Ciprides descends,
Presaging both the lovers ends.
Ecte the Goddesse of remorce,
With vocall and articulate force
Inspires Leucote, Venus swan,
T'excuse the beautious Sestian.
Venus, to wreake her rites abuses,
Creates the monster Eronusis;
Enflaming Heros Sacrifice,
With lightning darted from her eyes:
And thereof springs the painted beast,
That ever since taints every breast.
Now from Leanders place she rose, and found
Her haire and rent robe scattred on the ground:
Which taking up, she every peece did lay
Upon an Altar; where in youth of day
She usde t'exhibite private Sacrifice:
Those would she offer to the Deities
Of her faire Goddesse, and her powerfull son,
As relicks of her late-felt passion:
And in that holy sort she vowd to end them,
In hope her violent fancies that did rend them,
Would as quite fade in her loves holy fire,
As they should in the flames she ment t'inspire.
Then put she on all her religious weedes,
That deckt her in her secret sacred deedes:
A crowne of Isickles, that sunne nor fire
Could ever melt, and figur'd chast desire.
A golden star shinde in her naked breast,
In honour of the Queene-light of the East.
In her right hand she held a silver wand,
On whose bright top Peristera did stand,
Who was a Nymph, but now transformd a Dove,
And in her life was deare in Venus love:
And for her sake she ever since that time,
Chusde Doves to draw her Coach through heavens blew clime.
Her plentious haire in curled billowes swims
On her bright shoulder: her harmonious lims
Sustainde no more but a most subtile vaile
That hung on them, as it durst not assaile
Their different concord: for the weakest ayre
Could raise it swelling from her bewties fayre:
Nor did it cover, but adumbrate onelie
Her most heart-piercing parts, that a blest eie
Might see (as it did shadow) fearfullie,
All that all-love-deserving Paradise:
It was as blew as the most freezing skies,
Neere the Seas hew, for thence her Goddesse came:
On it a skarfe she wore of wondrous frame;
In midst whereof she wrought a virgins face,
From whose each cheeke a fine blush did chace
Two crimson flames, that did two waies extend,
Spreading the ample skarfe to either end,
Which figur'd the division of her minde,
Whiles yet she rested bashfully inclinde,
And stood not resolute to wed Leander.
This serv'd her white neck for a purple sphere,
And cast it selfe at full breadth downe her back.
There (since the first breath that begun the wrack
of her free quiet from Leanders lips)
She wrought a Sea in one flame full of ships:
But that one ship where all her wealth did passe
(Like simple marchants goods) Leander was:
For in that Sea she naked figured him;
Her diving needle taught him how to swim,
And to each thred did such resemblance give,
For joy to be so like him, it did live.
“Things senceles live by art, and rationall die,”
“By rude contempt of art and industrie.”
Scarce could she work, but in her strength of thought
She feard she prickt Leander as she wrought:
And oft would shrieke so, that her Guardian frighted,
Would staring haste, as with some mischiefe cited.
“They double life that dead things griefs sustayne:”
“They kill that feele not their friends living payne.”
Sometimes she feard he sought her infamie,
And then as she was working of his eie,
She thought to pricke it out to quench her ill:
But as she prickt, it grew more perfect still.
“Trifling attempts no serious acts advance;”
“The fire of love is blowne by dalliance.”
In working his fayre neck she did so grace it,
She still was working her owne armes t'imbrace it:
That, and his shoulders, and his hands were seene
Above the streame, and with a pure Sea greene
She did so queintly shadow every lim,
All might be seene beneath the waves to swim.
In this conceited skarfe she wrought beside
A Moone in change, and shooting stars did glide
In number after her with bloodie beames,
Which figur'd her affects in their extreames,
Pursiung Nature in her Cynthian bodie,
And did her thoughts running on change implie:
For maids take more delights when they prepare
And thinke of wives states, than when wives they are.
Beneath all these she wrought a Fisherman,
Drawing his nets from forth that Ocean;
Who drew so hard ye might discover well,
The toughned sinewes in his neck did swell:
His inward straines drave out his blood-shot eyes,
And springs of sweat did in his forehead rise:
Yet was of nought but of a Serpent sped,
That in his bosome flew and stung him dead.
And this by fate into her minde was sent,
Not wrought by meere instinct of her intent.
At the skarfs other end her hand did frame,
Neere the forkt point of the devided flame,
A countrie virgin keeping of a Vine,
Who did of hollow bulrushes combine
Snares for the stubble-loving Grashopper,
And by her lay her skrip that nourisht her.
Within a myrtle shade she sate and sung,
And tufts of waving reedes about her sprung:
Where lurkt two Foxes, that while she applide
Her trifling snares, their theeveries did devide:
One to the vine, another to her skrip,
That she did negligently overslip:
By which her fruitfull vine and holesome fare,
She suffred spoyld to make a childish snare.
These omenous fancies did her soule expresse,
And every finger made a Prophetesse,
To shew what death was hid in loves disguise,
And make her judgement conquer destinies.
O what sweet formes fayre Ladies soules doe shrowd,
Were they made seene and forced through their blood,
If through their beauties like rich work through lawn,
They would set forth their minds with vertues drawn,
In letting graces from their fingers flie,
To still their yas thoughts with industrie:
That their plied wits in numbred silks might sing
Passions huge conquest, and their needels leading
Affection prisoner through their own-built citties,
Pinniond with stories and Arachnean ditties.
Proceed we now with Heros sacrifice;
She odours burnd, and from their smoke did rise
Unsavorie fumes, that ayre with plagues inspired,
And then the consecrated sticks she fired.
On whose pale flame an angrie spirit flew,
And beate it downe still as it upward grew.
The virgin Tapers that on th'altar stood,
When she inflam'd them burnd as red as blood:
All sad ostents of that too neere successe,
That made such moving beauties motionlesse.
Then Hero wept; but her affrighted eyes
She quickly wrested from the sacrifice:
Shut them, and inwards for Leander lookt,
Searcht her soft bosome, and from thence she pluckt
His lovely picture: which when she had viewd,
Her beauties were with all loves joyes renewd.
The odors sweetned, and the fires burnd deere,
Leanders forme left no ill object there.
Such was his beautie that the force of light,
Whose knowledge teacheth wonders infinite,
The strength of number and proportion,
Nature had plaste in it to make it knowne
Art was her daughter, and what humane wits
For studie lost, intombd in drossie spirits.
After this accident (which for her glorie
Hero could not but make a historie)
Th'inhabitants of Sestus, and Abydus,
Did every yeare with feasts propitious,
To faire Leanders picture sacrifice,
And they were persons of especiall prize
That were allowd it, as an Ornament
T'inrich their houses; for the continent
of the strange vertues all approv'd it held:
For even the very looke of it repeld
All blastings, witchcrafts, and the strifes of nature
In those diseases that no hearbs could cure.
The woolfie sting of Avarice it would pull,
And make the rankest miser bountifull.
It kild the feare of thunder and of death;
The discords that conceits ingendereth
Twixt man and wife, it for the time would cease:
The flames of love it quencht, and would increase:
Held in a princes hand it would put out
The dreadfulst Comet: it would ease all doubt
of threatned mischiefes: it would bring asleepe
Such as were mad: it would enforce to weepe
Most barbarous eyes: and many more effects
This picture wrought, and sprung Leandrian sects,
Of which was Hero first: For he whose forme
(Held in her hand) cleerd such a fatall storme,
From hell she thought his person would defend her,
Which night and Hellespont would quickly send her.
With this confirmd, she vowd to banish quite
All thought of any check to her delite:
And in contempt of sillie bashfulnes,
She would the faith of her desires professe:
Where her Religion should be Policie,
To follow love with zeale her pietie:
Her chamber her Cathedrall Church should be,
And her Leander her chiefe Deitie.
For in her love these did the gods forego;
And though her knowledge did not teach her so,
Yet did it teach her this, that what her hart
Did greatest hold in her selfe greatest part,
That she did make her god; and t'was lesse nought
To leave gods in profession and in thought,
Than in her love and life: for therein lies
Most of her duties, and their dignities.
And raile the brain-bald world at what it will;
Thats the grand Atheisme that raignes in it still.
Yet singularitie she would use no more,
For she was singular too much before:
But she would please the world with fayre pretext;
Love would not leave her conscience perplext.
Great men that will have lesse doe for them, still
Must beare them out though th'acts be nere so ill.
Meannes must Pandar be to Excellence,
Pleasure attones Falshood and Conscience:
Dissembling was the worst (thought Hero then)
And that was best now she must live with men.
O vertuous love that taught her to doe best,
When she did worst, and when she thought it lest.
Thus would she still proceed in works divine,
And in her sacred state of priesthood shine,
Handling the holy rites with hands as bold,
As if therein she did Joves thunder hold;
And need not feare those menaces of error,
Which she at others threw with greatest terror.
O lovely Hero, nothing is thy sin,
Wayd with those foule faults other Priests are in;
That having neither faiths, nor works, nor bewties,
T'engender any scuse for slubberd duties;
With as much countnance fill their holie chayres,
And sweat denouncements gainst prophane affayres,
As if their lives were cut out by their places,
And they the only fathers of the Graces.
Now as with setled minde she did repaire,
Her thoughts to sacrifice her ravisht haire,
And her torne robe which on the altar lay,
And only for Religions fire did stay;
She heard a thunder by the Cyclops beaten,
In such a volley as the world did threaten,
Given Venus as she parted th'ayrie Sphere,
Discending now to chide with Hero here:
When suddenly the Goddesse waggoners,
The Swans and Turtles that in coupled pheres,
Through all worlds bosoms draw her influence,
Lighted in Heros window, and from thence
To her fayre shoulders flew the gentle Doves,
Gracefull Aedone that sweet pleasure loves,
And ruffoot Chreste with the tufted crowne,
Both which did kisse her, though their Goddes frowne.
The Swans did in the solid flood, her glasse,
Proyne their fayre plumes; of which the fairest was
Jove- lov'd Leucote, thatpure brightnes is;
The other bountie-loving Dapsilis.
All were in heaven, now they with Hero were:
But Venus lookes brought wrath, and urged feare.
Her robe was skarlet, black her heads attire,
And through her naked breast shinde streames of fire,
As when the rarefied ayre is driven
In flashing streames, and opes the darkned heaven.
In her white hand a wreath of yew she bore,
And breaking th'icie wreath sweet Hero wore,
She forst about her browes her wreath of yew,
And sayd; now minion to thy fate be trew,
Though not to me, indure what this portends;
Begin where lightnes will, in shame it ends.
Love makes thee cunning; thou art currant now,
By being counterfeit: thy broken vow,
Deceit with her pide garters must rejoyne,
And with her stampe thou countnances must coyne,
Coynes, and pure deceits for purities:
And still a mayd wilt seeme in cosoned eies,
And have an antike face to laugh within,
While thy smooth lookes make men digest thy sin.
But since thy lips (lest thought forsworne) forswore,
Be never virgins vow worth trusting more.
When Beauties dearest did her Goddesse heare
Breathe such rebukes gainst that she could not cleare;
Dumbe sorrow spake alowd in teares, and blood
That from her griefe-burst vaines in piteous flood,
From the sweet conduits of her favor fell:
The gentle Turtles did with moanes make swell
Their shining gorges: the white black-eyde Swans
Did sing as woflill Epicedians,
As they would straightwaies dye: when pities Queene
The Goddesse Ecte, that had ever beene
Hid in a watrie clowde neere Heros cries,
Since the first instant of her broken eies,
Gave bright Leucote voyce, and made her speake,
To ease her anguish, whose swolne breast did breake
With anger at her Goddesse, that did touch
Hero so neere for that she usde so much.
And thrusting her white neck at Venus, sayd;
Why may not amorous Hero seeme a mayd,
Though she be none, as well as you suppresse
In modest cheekes your inward wantonnesse?
How often have wee drawne you from above,
T'exchange with mortals, rites for rites in love?
Why in your preist then call you that offence
That shines in you, and is your influence?
With this the furies stopt Leucotes lips,
Enjoynd by Venus; who with Rosie whips
Beate the kind Bird. Fierce lightning from her eyes
Did set on fire faire Heros sacrifice,
Which was her torne robe, and inforced hayre;
And the bright flame became a mayd most faire
For her aspect: her tresses were of wire,
Knit like a net, where harts all set on fire,
Strugled in pants and could not get releast:
Her armes were all with golden pincers drest,
And twentie fashiond knots, pullies, and brakes,
And all her bodie girdled with painted Snakes.
Her doune parts in a Scorpions taile combinde,
Freckled with twentie colours; pyed wings shinde
Out of her shoulders; Cloth had never die,
Nor sweeter colours never viewed eie,
In scorching Turkie, Cares, Tartarie,
Than shinde about this spirit notorious;
Nor was Arachnes web so glorious.
Of lightning and of shreds she was begot;
More hold in base dissemblers is there not.
Her name was Eronusis. Venus flew
From Heros sight, and at her Chariot drew
This wondrous creature to so steepe a height,
That all the world she might command with sleight
of her gay wings: and then she bad her hast,
Since Hero had dissembled, and disgrast
Her rites so much, and every breast infect
With her deceits; she made her Architect
Of all dissimulation, and since then
Never was any trust in maides nor men.
O it spighted,
Fayre Venus hart to see her most delighted,
And one she chusde for temper of her minde,
To be the only ruler of her kinde,
So soone to let her virgin race be ended:
Not simply for the fault a whit offended;
But that in strife for chastnes with the Moone,
Spitefull Diana bad her shew but one,
That was her servant vowd, and liv'd a mayd,
And now she thought to answer that upbrayd,
Hero had lost her answer; who knowes not
Venus would seeme as farre from any spot
Of light demeanour, as the very skin
Twixt Cynthias browes; Sin is asham'd of Sin.
Up Venus flew, and scarce durst up for feare
Of Phoebes laughter, when she past her Sphere:
And so most ugly clowded was the light,
That day was hid in day; night came ere night,
And Venus could not through the thick ayre pierce,
Till the dales king, god of undanted verse,
Because she was so plentifull a theame,
To such as wore his Lawrell Anademe:
Like to a fine bullet made descent,
And from her passage those fat vapours rent,
That being not throughly rarefide to raine,
Melted like pitch as blew as any vaine,
And scalding tempests made the earth to shrinke
Under their fervor, and the world did thinke
In every drop a torturing Spirit flew,
It pierst so deeply, and it burnd so blew.
Betwixt all this and Hero, Hero held
Leanders picture as a Persean shield:
And she was free from feare of worst successe;
The more ill threats us, we suspect the lesse;
As we grow haples, violence subtle growes,
Dumb, deafe, and blind, and comes when no man knowes.
The end of the fourth Sestyad.
THE ARGUMENT OF THE FIFT SESTYAD.Day doubles her accustomd date,
As loth the night, incenst by fate,
Should wrack our lovers; Heros plight,
Longs for Leander, and the night:
Which, ere her thirstie wish recovers,
She sends for two betrothed lovers,
And marries them, that (with their crew,
Their sports and ceremonies due)
She covertly might celebrate,
With secret joy her owne estate.
She makes a feast, at which appeares
The wilde Nymph Teras, that still beares
An Ivory Lute, tels Omenous tales,
And sings at solemne festivales.
Now was bright Hero weary of the day,
Thought an Olympiad in Leanders stay.
Sol and the soft-foote Howrs hung on his armes,
And would not let him swim, foreseeing his harmes:
That day Aurora double grace obtainde
Of her love Phoebus; she his Horses rainde,
Set on his golden knee, and as she list
She puld him back; and as she puld, she kist
To have him turne to bed; he lov'd her more,
To see the love Leander Hero bore.
Examples profit much: ten times in one,
In persons full of note, good deedes are done.
Day was so long, men walking fell asleepe,
The heavie humors that their eyes did steepe,
Made them feare mischiefs. The hard streets were beds
For covetous churles, and for ambitious heads,
That spight of Nature would their busines plie.
All thought they had the falling Epilepsie,
Men groveld so upon the smotherd ground,
And pittie did the hart of heaven confound.
The Gods, the Graces, and the Muses came
Downe to the Destinies, to stay the frame
Of the true lovers deaths, and all worlds teares:
But death before had stopt their cruell eares.
All the Celestials parted mourning then,
Pierst with our humane miseries more then men.
Ah, nothing doth the world with mischiefe fill,
But want of feeling one anothers ill.
With their descent the day grew something fayre,
And cast a brighter robe upon the ayre.
Hero to shorten time with merriment,
For yong Alcmane, and bright Mya sent,
Two lovers that had long crav'd mariage dues
At Heros hands: but she did still refuse,
For lovely Mya was her consort vowd
In her maids state, and therefore not allowd
To amorous Nuptials: yet faire Hero now
Intended to dispence with her cold vow,
Since hers was broken, and to marrie her:
The rites would pleasing matter minister
To her conceits, and shorten tedious day.
They came; sweet Musick usherd th'odorous way,
And wanton Ayre in twentie sweet forms danst
After her fingers; Beautie and Love advanst
Their ensignes in the downles rosie faces
Of youths and maids, led after by the Graces.
For all these, Hero made a friendly feast,
Welcomd them kindly, did much love protest,
Winning their harts with all the meanes she might,
That when her fault should chance t'abide the light,
Their loves might cover or extenuate it,
And high in her worst fate make pittie sit.
She married them, and in the banquet came
Borne by the virgins: Hero striv'd to frame
Her thoughts to mirth. Aye me, but hard it is
To imitate a false and forced blis.
Ill may a sad minde forge a merrie face,
Nor hath constrained laughter any grace.
Then layd she wine on cares to make them sinke;
“Who fears the threats of fortune, let him drinke.”
To these quick Nuptials entred suddenly
Admired Teras with the Ebon Thye,
A Nymph that haunted the greene Sestyan groves,
And would consort soft virgins in their loves,
At gaysome Triumphs, and on solemne dayes,
Singing prophetike Elegies and Layes:
And fingring of a silver Lute she tide,
With black and purple skarfs by her left side.
Apollo gave it, and her skill withall,
And she was term'd his Dwarfe she was so small.
Yet great in vertue, for his beames enclosde
His vertues in her: never was proposde
Riddle to her, or Augurie, strange or new,
But she resolv'd it: never sleight tale flew
From her charmd lips, without important sence,
Shewne in some grave succeeding consequence.
This little Silvane with her songs and tales,
Gave such estate to feasts and Nuptiales,
That though oft times she forewent Tragedies,
Yet for her strangenes still she pleasde their eyes,
And for her smalnes they admir'd her so,
They thought her perfect borne and could not grow.
All eyes were on her: Hero did command
An Altar deckt with sacred state should stand,
At the Feasts upper end close by the Bride,
On which the pretie Nymph might sit espide.
Then all were silent; every one so heares,
As all their sences climbd into their eares:
And first this amorous tale that fitted well
Fayre Hero and the Nuptials she did tell:
The tale of Teras.Hymen that now is god of Nuptiall rites,
And crownes with honor Love and his delights,
Of Athens was, a youth so sweet of face,
That many thought him of the femall race:
Such quickning brightnes did his deere eyes dart,
Warme went their beames to his beholders hart.
In such pure leagues his beauties were combinde,
That there your Nuptiall contracts first were signde.
For as proportion, white and crimsine, meet
In Beauties mixture, all right deere, and sweet;
The eye responsible, the golden haire,
And none is held without the other, faire:
All spring together, all together fade;
Such intermixt affections should invade
Two perfect lovers: which being yet unseene,
Their vertues and their comforts copied beene,
In Beauties concord, subject to the eie;
And that, in Hymen, pleasde so matchleslie,
That lovers were esteemde in their full grace,
Like forme and colour mixt in Hymens face;
And such sweete concord was thought worthie then
Of torches, musick, feasts, and greatest men:
So Hymen lookt, that even the chastest minde
He mov'd to joyne in joyes of sacred kinde:
For onely now his chins first doune consorted
His heads rich fleece, in golden curles contorted;
And as he was so lov'd, he lov'd so too,
So should best bewties, bound by Nuptialls doo.
Bright Eucharis, who was by all men saide
The noblest, fayrest, and the richest maide,
Of all th'Athenian damzels, Hymen lov'd,
With such transmission, that his heart remov'd
From his white brest to hers; but her estate
In passing his, was so interminate
For wealth and honor, that his love durst feede
On nought but sight and hearing, nor could breede
Hope of requittall, the grand prise of love;
Nor could he heare or see but he must prove
How his rare bewties musick would agree
With maids in consort: therefore robbed he
His chin of those same few first fruits it bore,
And clad in such attire, as Virgins wore,
He kept them companie, and might right well,
For he did all but Eucharis excell
In all the fayre of Beautie: yet he wanted
Vertue to make his owne desires implanted
In his deare Eucharis; for women never
Love beautie in their sex, but envie ever.
His judgement yet (that durst not suite addresse,
Nor past due meanes presume of due successe)
Reason gat fortune in the end to speede
To his best prayers: but strange it seemd indeede,
That fortune should a chast affection blesse,
“Preferment seldome graceth bashfulnesse.”
Nor grast it Hymen yet; but many a dart
And many an amorous thought enthrald his hart,
Ere he obtaind her; and he sick became,
Forst to abstaine her sight, and then the flame
Rag'd in his bosome. O what griefe did fill him:
Sight made him sick, and want of sight did kill him.
The virgins wondred where Diatia stayd,
For so did Hymen terme himselfe a mayd.
At length with sickly lookes he greeted them:
Tis strange to see gainst what an extreame streame
A lover strives; poore Hymen lookt so ill,
That as in merit he increased still,
By suffring much, so he in grace decreast.
Women are most wonne when men merit least:
If merit looke not well, love bids stand by,
Loves speciall lesson is to please the eye.
And Hymen soone recovering all he lost,
Deceiving still these maids, but himselfe most,
His love and he with many virgin dames,
Noble by birth, noble by beauties flames,
Leaving the towne with songs and hallowed lights,
To doe great Ceres Eleusina rites
Of zealous Sacrifice; were made a pray
To barbarous Rovers that in ambush lay,
And with rude hands enforst their shining spoyle,
Farre from the darkned Citie, tir'd with toyle.
And when the yellow issue of the skie
Came trouping forth, jelous of crueltie
To their bright fellowes of this under heaven,
Into a double night they saw them driven,
A horride Cave, the theeves black mansion,
Where wearie of the journey they had gon,
Their last nights watch, and drunke with their sweete gains,
Dull Morpheus entred, laden with silken chains,
Stronger then iron, and bound the swelling vaines
And tyred sences of these lawles Swaines.
But when the virgin lights thus dimly burnd;
O what a hell was heaven in! how they mournd
And wrung their hands, and wound their gentle forms
Into the shapes of sorrow! Golden storms
Fell from their eyes: As when the Sunne appeares,
And yet it raines, so shewd their eyes their teares.
And as when funerall dames watch a dead corse,
Weeping about it, telling with remorse
What paines he felt, how long in paine he lay,
How little food he eate, what he would say;
And then mixe mournfull tales of others deaths,
Smothering themselves in clowds of their owne breaths;
At length, one cheering other, call for wine,
The golden boale drinks teares out of their eine,
As they drinke wine from it; and round it goes,
Each helping other to relieve their woes:
So cast these virgins beauties mutuall raies,
One lights another, face the face displaies;
Lips by reflexion kist, and hands hands shooke,
Even by the whitenes each of other tooke.
But Hymen now usde friendly Morpheus aide,
Slew every theefe, and rescude every maide.
And now did his enamourd passion take
Hart from his hartie deede, whose worth did make
His hope of bounteous Euckaris more strong;
And now came Love with Proteus, who had long
Inggl'd the little god with prayers and gifts,
Ran through all shapes, and varied all his shifts,
To win Loves stay with him, and make him love him:
And when he saw no strength of sleight could move him
To make him love, or stay, he nimbly turnd
Into Loves selfe, he so extreamely burnd.
And thus came Love with Proteus and his powre,
T'encounter Eucharis: first like the flowre
That Junos milke did spring, the silver Lillie,
He fell on Hymens hand, who straight did spie
The bounteous Godhead, and with wondrous joy
Offred it Eucharis. She wondrous coy
Drew back her hand: the subtle flowre did woo it,
And drawing it neere, mixt so you could not know it.
As two deere Tapers mixe in one their light,
So did the Lillie and the hand their white:
She viewd it, and her view the forme bestowes
Amongst her spirits: for as colour flowes
From superficies of each thing we see,
Even so with colours formes emitted bee:
And where Loves forme is, Love is, Love is forme;
He entred at the eye, his sacred storme
Rose from the hand, Loves sweetest instrument:
It stird her bloods sea so, that high it went,
And beate in bashfull waves gainst the white shore
Of her divided cheekes; it rag'd the more,
Because the tide went gainst the haughtie winde
Of her estate and birth: And as we finde
In fainting ebs, the flowrie Zephire hurles
The greene-hayrd Hellespont, broke in silver curles,
Gainst Heros towre: but in his blasts retreate,
The waves obeying him, they after beate,
Leaving the chalkie shore a great way pale,
Then moyst it freshly with another gale:
So ebd and flowde the blood in Eucharis face,
Coynesse and Love striv'd which had greatest grace.
Virginitie did fight on Coynesse side;
Feare of her parents frownes, and femall pride,
Lothing the lower place, more then it loves
The high contents, desert and vertue moves.
With Love fought Hymens beautie and his valure,
Which scarce could so much favour yet allure
To come to strike, but fameles idle stood,
“Action is firie valours soveraigne good.”
But Love once entred, wisht no greater ayde
Then he could find within; thought, thought betrayd.
The bribde, but incorrupted Garrison,
Sung Io Hymen; there those songs begun,
And Love was growne so rich with such a game,
And wanton with the ease of his free raigne,
That he would turne into her roughest frownes
To turne them out; and thus he Hymen crownes
King of his thoughts, mans greatest Emperie:
This was his first brave step to deitie.
Home to the mourning cittie they repayre,
With newes as holesome as the morning ayre,
To the sad parents of each saved maid:
But Hymen and his Eucharis had laid
This plat, to make the flame of their delight
Round as the Moone at full, and full as bright.
Because the parents of chast Eucharis
Exceeding Hymens so, might crosse their blis;
And as the world rewards deserts, that law
Cannot assist with force: so when they saw
Their daughter safe, take vantage of their owne,
Praise Hymens valour much, nothing bestowne:
Hymen must leave the virgins in a Grove
Farre off from Athens, and go first to prove
If to restore them all with fame and life,
He should enjoy his dearest as his wife.
This told to all the maids; the most agree:
The riper sort knowing what t'is to bee
The first mouth of a newes so farre deriv'd,
And that to heare and beare newes brave folks liv'd,
As being a carriage speciall hard to beare
Occurrents, these occurrents being so deare,
They did with grace protest, they were content
T'accost their friends with all their complement,
For Hymens good: but to incurre their harme,
There he must pardon them. This wit went warme
To Adolesches braine, a Nymph borne hie,
Made all of voyce and fire, that upwards flie:
Her hart and all her forces nether traine
Climbd to her tongue, and thither fell her braine,
Since it could goe no higher, and it must go:
All powers she had, even her tongue, did so.
In spirit and quicknes she much joy did take,
And lov'd her tongue, only for quicknes sake,
And she would hast and tell. The rest all stay,
Hymen goes one, the Nymph another way:
And what became of her Ile tell at last:
Yet take her visage now: moyst lipt, long fa'st,
Thin like an iron wedge, so sharpe and tart,
As twere of purpose made to cleave Loves hart.
Well were this lovely Beautie rid of her,
And Hymen did at Athens now prefer
His welcome suite, which he with joy aspirde:
A hundred princely youths with him retirde
To fetch the Nymphs: Chariots and Musick went,
And home they came: heaven with applauses rent.
The Nuptials straight proceed, whiles all the towne,
Fresh in their joyes might doe them most renowne.
First gold-lockt Hymen did to Church repaire,
Like a quick offring burnd in flames of haire.
And after, with a virgin firmament,
The Godhead-proving Bride, attended went
Before them all; she lookt in her command,
As if forme-giving Cyprias silver hand
Gripte all their beauties, and crusht out one flame;
She blusht to see how beautie overcame
The thoughts of all men. Next before her went
Five lovely children deckt with ornament
Of her sweet colours, bearing Torches by,
For light was held a happie Augurie
Of generation, whose efficient right
Is nothing else but to produce to light.
The od disparent number they did chuse,
To shew the union married loves should use,
Since in two equall parts it will not sever,
But the midst holds one to rejoyne it ever,
As common to both parts: men therfore deeme,
That equall number Gods does not esteeme,
Being authors of sweet peace and unitie,
But pleasing to th'infernall Emperie,
Under whose ensignes Wars and Discords fight,
Since an even number you may disunite
In two parts equall, nought in middle left,
To reunite each part from other reft:
And five they hold in most especiall prise,
Since t'is the first od number that doth rise
From the two formost numbers unitie
That od and even are; which are two, and three,
For one no number is: but thence doth flow
The powerfull race of number. Next did go
A noble Matron that did spinning beare
A huswifes rock and spindle, and did weare
A Weathers skin, with all the snowy fleece,
To intimate that even the daintiest peece,
And noblest borne dame should industrious bee:
That which does good disgraceth no degree.
And now to Junos Temple they are come,
Where her grave Priest stood in the mariage rome.
On his right arme did hang a skarlet vaile,
And from his shoulders to the ground did traile,
On either side, Ribands of white and blew;
With the red vaile he hid the bashfull hew
Of the chast Bride, to shew the modest shame,
In coupling with a man should grace a dame.
Then tooke he the disparent Silks, and tide
The Lovers by the wasts, and side to side,
In token that thereafter they must binde
In one selfe sacred knot each others minde.
Before them on an Altar he presented
Both fire and water: which was first invented,
Since to ingenerate every humane creature,
And every other birth produ'st by Nature,
Moysture and heate must mixe: so man and wife
For humane race must joyne in Nuptiall life.
Then one of Junos Birds, the painted Jay,
He sacrifisde, and tooke the gall away.
All which he did behinde the Altar throw,
In signe no bitternes of hate should grow
Twixt maried loves, nor any least disdaine.
Nothing they spake, for twas esteemd too plaine
For the most silken mudnes of a maid,
To let a publique audience heare it said
She boldly tooke the man: and so respected
Was bashfulnes in Athens: it erected
To chast Agneja, which is Shamefastnesse,
A sacred Temple, holding her a Goddesse.
And now to Feasts, Masks, and triumphant showes,
The shining troupes returnd, even till earths throwes
Brought forth with joy the thickest part of night,
When the sweet Nuptiall song that usde to cite
All to their rest, was by Phemonoe sung:
First Delphian Prophetesse, whose graces sprung
Out of the Muses well, she sung before
The Bride into her chamber: at which dore
A Matron and a Torch-bearer did stand;
A painted box of Confits in her hand
The Matron held, and so did other some
That compast round the honourd Nuptiall rome.
The custome was that every maid did weare,
During her maidenhead, a silken Sphere
About her waste, above her inmost weede,
Knit with Minervas knot, and that was freede
By the faire Bridegrome on the manage night,
With many ceremonies of delight:
And yet eternisde Hymens tender Bride,
To suffer it dissolv'd so sweetly cride,
The maids that heard, so lov'd, and did adore her,
They wisht with all their hearts to suffer for her.
So had the Matrons, that with Confits stood
About the chamber, such affectionate blood,
And so true feeling of her harmeles paines,
That every one a showre of Confits raines.
For which the Brideyouths scrambling on the ground,
In noyse of that sweet haile her cryes were drownd.
And thus blest Hymen joyde his gracious Bride,
And for his joy was after deifide.
The Saffron mirror by which Phoebus love,
Greene Tellus decks her, now he held above
The dowdy mountaines: and the noble maide,
Sharp-visag'd Adolesche, that was straide
Out of her way, in hasting with her newes,
Not till this houre th'Athenian turrets viewes:
And now brought home by guides, she heard by all
That her long kept occurrents would be stale,
And how faire Hymens honors did excell
For those rare newes, which she came short to tell.
To heare her deare tongue robd of such a joy,
Made the well-spoken Nymph take such a toy,
That downe she sunke: when lightning from above,
Shrunk her leane body, and for meere free love,
Turnd her into the pied-plum'd Psittacus,
That now the Parrat is surnam'd by us,
Who still with counterfeit confusion prates,
Nought but newes common to the commonst mates.
This tolde, strange Teras toucht her Lute and sung
This dittie, that the Torchie evening sprung.
Epithalamion Teratos.Come come deare night, Loves Mart of kisses,
Sweet close of his ambitious line,
The fruitfull summer of his blisses,
Loves glorie doth in darknes shine.
O come soft rest of Cares, come night,
Come naked vertues only tire,
The reaped harvest of the light,
Bound up in sheaves of sacred fire.
Love cals to warre,
Sighs his Alarmes,
Lips his swords are,
The field his Armes.
Come Night and lay thy velvet hand
On glorious Dayes outfacing face;
And all thy crouned flames command,
For Torches to our Nuptiall grace.
Love cals to warre,
Sighs his Alarmes,
Lips his swords are,
The field his Armes.
No neede have we of factious Day,
To cast in envie of thy peace,
Her bals of Discord in thy way:
Here beauties day doth never cease,
Day is abstracted here,
And varied in a triple sphere.
Hero, Alcmane, Mya, so outshine thee,
Ere thou come here let Thetis thrice refine thee.
Love cals to warre,
Sighs his Alarmes,
Lips his swords are,
The field his Armes.
The Evening starre I see:
Rise youths, the Evening starre
Helps Love to summon warre,
Both now imbracing bee.
Rise youths, Loves right claims more then banquets, rise.
Now the bright Marygolds that deck the skies,
Phoebus celestiall flowrs, that (contrarie
To his flowers here) ope when he shuts his eie,
And shut when he doth open, crowne your sports:
Now love in night, and night in love exhorts
Courtship and Dances: All your parts employ,
And suite nights rich expansure with your joy,
Love paints his longings in sweet virgins eyes:
Rise youths, Loves right claims more then banquets, rise.
Rise virgins, let fayre Nuptiall loves enfolde
Your fruitles breasts: the maidenheads ye holde
Are not your owne alone, but parted are;
Part in disposing them your Parents share,
And that a third part is: so must ye save
Your loves a third, and you your thirds must have.
Love paints his longings in sweet virgins eyes:
Rise youths, Loves right claims more then banquets, rise.
Herewith the amorous spirit that was so kinde
To Teras haire, and combd it downe with winde,
Still as it Comet-like brake from her braine,
Would needes have Teras gone, and did refraine
To blow it downe: which staring up, dismaid
The timorous feast, and she no longer staid:
But bowing to the Bridegrome and the Bride,
Did like a shooting exhalation glide
Out of their sights: the turning of her back
Made them all shrieke, it lookt so ghastly black.
O haples Hero, that most haples clowde,
Thy soone-succeeding Tragedie foreshowde.
Thus all the Nuptiall crew to joyes depart,
But much-wrongd Hero stood Hels blackest dart:
Whose wound because I grieve so to display,
I use digressions thus t'encrease the day.
The end of the fift Sestyad.
THE ARGUMENT OF THE SIXT SESTYAD.Leucote flyes to all the windes,
And from the fates their outrage bindes,
That Hero and her love may meete.
Leander (with Loves compleate Fleete
Mand in himselfe) puts forth to Seas,
When straight the ruthles Destinies,
With Ate stirre the windes to warre
Upon the Hellespont: Their jarre
Drownes poore Leander. Heros eyes
Wet witnesses of his surprise,
Her Torch blowne out. Griefe casts her downe
Upon her love, and both doth drowne.
In whose just ruth the God of Seas
Transformes them to th'Acanthides.
No longer could the day nor Destinies
Delay the night, who now did frowning rise
Into her Throne; and at her humorous brests,
Visions and Dreames lay sucking: all mens rests
Fell like the mists of death upon their eyes,
Dayes too long darts so kild their faculties.
The windes yet, like the flowrs to cease began:
For bright Leucote, Venus whitest Swan,
That held sweet Hero deare, spread her fayre wings,
Like to a field of snow, and message brings
From Venus to the Fates, t'entreate them lay
Their charge upon the windes their rage to stay,
That the sterne battaile of the Seas might cease,
And guard Leander to his love in peace.
The Fates consent, (aye me dissembling Fates)
They shewd their favours to conceale their hates,
And draw Leander on, least Seas too hie
Should stay his too obsequious destinie:
Who like a fleering slavish Parasite,
In warping profit or a traiterous sleight,
Hoopes round his rotten bodie with devotes,
And pricks his descant face full of false notes,
Praysing with open throte (and othes as fowle
As his false heart) the beautie of an Owle,
Kissing his skipping hand with charmed skips,
That cannot leave, but leapes upon his lips
Like a cock-sparrow, or a shameles queane
Sharpe at a red-lipt youth, and nought doth meane
Of all his antick shewes, but doth repayre
More tender fawnes, and takes a scattred hayre
From his tame subjects shoulder; whips, and cals
For every thing he lacks; creepes gainst the wals
With backward humblesse, to give needles way:
Thus his false fate did with Leander play.
First to black Eurus flies the white Leucote,
Borne mongst the Negros in the Levant Sea,
On whose curld head the glowing Sun doth rise,
And shewes the soveraigne will of Destinies,
To have him cease his blasts, and downe he lies.
Next, to the fennie Notus, course she holds,
And found him leaning with his armes in folds
Upon a rock, his white hayre full of showres,
And him she chargeth by the fatall powres,
To hold in his wet cheekes his clowdie voyce.
To Zephire then that doth in flowres rejoyce.
To snake-foote Boreas next she did remove,
And found him tossing of his ravisht love,
To heate his frostie bosome hid in snow,
Who with Leucotes sight did cease to blow.
Thus all were still to Heros harts desire,
Who with all speede did consecrate a fire
Of flaming Gummes, and comfortable Spice,
To light her Torch, which in such curious price
She held, being object to Leanders sight,
That nought but fires perfilm'd must give it light.
She lov'd it so, she griev'd to see it burne,
Since it would waste and soone to ashes turne:
Yet if it burnd not, twere not worth her eyes,
What made it nothing, gave it all the prize.
Sweet Torch, true Glasse of our societie;
What man does good, but he consumes thereby?
But thou wert lov'd for good, held high, given show:
Poore vertue loth'd for good, obscur'd, held low.
Doe good, be pinde; be deedles good, disgrast:
Unles we feede on men, we let them fast.
Yet Hero with these thoughts her Torch did spend.
When Bees makes waxe, Nature doth not intend
It shall be made a Torch: but we that know
The proper vertue of it make it so,
And when t'is made we light it: nor did Nature
Propose one life to maids, but each such creature
Makes by her soule the best of her free state,
Which without love is rude, disconsolate,
And wants Loves fire to make it milde and bright,
Till when, maids are but Torches wanting light.
Thus gainst our griefe, not cause of griefe we fight,
The right of nought is gleande, but the delight.
Up went she, but to tell how she descended,
Would God she were not dead, or my verse ended.
She was the rule of wishes, summe and end
For all the parts that did on love depend:
Yet cast the Torch his brightues further forth;
But what shines neerest best, holds truest worth.
Leander did not through such tempests swim
To kisse the Torch, although it lighted him:
But all his powres in her desires awaked,
Her love and vertues cloth'd him richly naked.
Men kisse but fire that only shewes pursue,
Her Torch and Hero, figure shew, and vertue.
Now at opposde Abydus nought was heard,
But bleating flocks, and many a bellowing herd,
Slaine for the Nuptials, cracks of falling woods,
Blowes of broad axes, powrings out of floods.
The guiltie Hellespont was mixt and stainde
With bloodie Torrents, that the shambles raind;
Not arguments of feast, but shewes that bled,
Foretelling that red night that followed.
More blood was spilt, more honors were addrest,
Then could have graced any happie feast.
Rich banquets, triumphs, every pomp employes
His sumptuous hand: no misers nuptiall joyes.
Ayre felt continuall thunder with the noyse,
Made in the generall manage violence.
And no man knew the cause of this expence,
But the two haples Lords, Leanders Sire,
And poore Leander, poorest where the fire
Of credulous love made him most rich surmisde.
As short was he of that himselfe he prisde,
As is an emptie Gallant full of forme,
That thinks each looke an act, each drop a storme,
That fals from his brave breathings; most brought up
In our Metropolis, and hath his cup
Brought after him to feasts; and much Palme beares,
For his rare judgement in th'attire he weares;
Hath seene the hot Low Countries, not their heat,
Observes their rampires and their buildings yet.
And for your sweet discourse with mouthes is heard
Giving instructions with his very beard.
Hath gone with an Ambassadour, and been
A great mans mate in travailing, even to Rhene,
And then puts all his worth in such a face,
As he saw brave men make, and strives for grace
To get his newes forth; as when you descrie
A ship with all her sayle contends to flie
Out of the narrow Thames with windes unapt,
Now crosseth here, then there, then this way rapt,
And then hath one point reacht; then alters all,
And to another crooked reach doth fall
Of halfe a burdbolts shoote; keeping more coyle,
Then if she danst upon the Oceans toyle:
So serious is his trifling companie,
In all his swelling ship of vacantrie.
And so short of himselfe in his high thought,
Was our Leander in his fortunes brought,
And in his fort of love that he thought won.
But otherwise he skornes comparison.
O sweet Leander, thy large worth I hide
In a short grave; ill favourd stormes must chide
Thy sacred favour; I, in floods of inck
Must drowne thy graces, which white papers drink,
Even as thy beauties did the foule black Seas:
I must describe the hell of thy disease,
That heaven did merit: yet I needes must see
Our painted fooles and cockhorse Pessantrie
Still still usurp, with long lives, loves, and lust,
The seates of vertue, cutting short as dust
Her deare bought issue; ill, to worse converts,
And tramples in the blood of all deserts.
Night close and silent now goes fast before
The Captaines and their souldiers to the shore,
On whom attended the appointed Fleete
At Sestus Bay, that should Leander meete.
Who fainde he in another ship would passe:
Which must not be, for no one meane there was
To get his love home, but the course he tooke.
Forth did his beautie for his beautie looke,
And saw her through her Torch, as you beholde
Sometimes within the Sunne, a face of golde,
Form'd in strong thoughts, by that traditions force,
That saies a God sits there and guides his course.
His sister was with him, to whom he shewd
His guide by Sea: and sayd; Oft have you viewd
In one heaven many starres, but never yet
In one starre many heavens till now were met.
See lovely sister, see, now Hero shines
No heaven but her appeares: each star repines,
And all are clad in clowdes, as if they mournd,
To be by influence of Earth out-burnd.
Yet doth she shine, and teacheth vertues traine,
Still to be constant in Hels blackest raigne:
Though even the gods themselves do so entreat them
As they did hate, and Earth as she would eate them.
Off went his silken robe, and in he leapt;
Whom the kinde waves so licorously cleapt,
Thickning for haste one in another so,
To kisse his skin, that he might almost go
To Heros Towre, had that kind minuit lasted.
But now the cruell fates with Ate hasted
To all the windes, and made them battaile fight
Upon the Hellespont, for eithers right
Pretended to the windie monarchie.
And forth they brake, the Seas mixt with the side,
And tost distrest Leander, being in hell,
As high as heaven; Blisse not in height doth dwell.
The Destinies sate dancing on the waves,
To see the glorious windes with mutuall braves
Consume each other: O true glasse to see,
How ruinous ambitious Statists bee
To their owne glories! Poore Leander cried
For help to Sea-borne Venus; she denied:
To Boreas, that for his Atthoeas sake,
He would some pittie on his Hero take,
And for his owne loves sake, on his desires:
But Glorie never blowes cold Pitties fires.
Then calde he Neptune, who through all the noise,
Knew with affright his wrackt Leanders voice:
And up he rose, for haste his forehead hit
Gainst heavens hard Christall; his proud waves he smit
With his forkt scepter, that could not obay,
Much greater powers then Neptunes gave them sway.
They lov'd Leander so, in groanes they brake
When they came neere him; and such space did take
Twixt one another, loth to issue on,
That in their shallow furrowes earth was shone,
And the poore lover tooke a little breath:
But the curst Fates sate spinning of his death
On every wave, and with the servile windes
Tumbled them on him: And now Hero findes
By that she felt, her deare Leanders state.
She wept and prayed for him to every fate,
And every winde that whipt her with her haire
About the face, she kist and spake it faire,
Kneeld to it, gave it drinke out of her eyes
To quench his thirst: but still their cruelties
Even her poore Torch envied, and rudely beate
The bating flame from that deare foode it eate:
Deare, for it nourisht her Leanders life,
Which with her robe she rescude from their strife:
But silke too soft was, such hard hearts to breake,
And she deare soule, even as her silke, faint, weake,
Could not preserve it: out, O out it went.
Leander still cald Neptune, that now rent
His brackish curles, and tore his wrinckled face
Where teares in billowes did each other chace,
And (burst with ruth) he hurld his marble Mace
At the sterne Fates: it wounded Lachesis
That drew Leanders thread, and could not misse
The thread it selfe, as it her hand did hit,
But smote it full and quite did sunder it.
The more kinde Neptune rag'd, the more he raste
His loves lives fort, and kild as he embraste.
Anger doth still his owne mishap encrease;
If any comfort live, it is in peace.
O theevish Fates, to let Blood, Flesh, and Sence
Build two fayre Temples for their Excellence,
To rob it with a poysoned influence.
Though soules gifts starve, the bodies are held dear
In ugliest things; Sence-sport preserves a Beare.
But here nought serves our turnes; O heaven and earth,
How most most wretched is our humane birth?
And now did all the tyrannous crew depart,
Knowing there was a storme in Heros hart,
Greater then they could make, and skornd their smart.
She bowd her selfe so low out of her Towre,
That wonder twas she fell not ere her howre,
With searching the lamenting waves for him;
Like a poore Snayle, her gentle supple lim
Hung on her Turrets top so most downe right,
As she would dive beneath the darknes quite,
To finde her Jewell; Jewell, her Leander,
A name of all earths Jewels pleasde not her,
Like his deare name: Leander, still my choice,
Come nought but my Leander; O my voice
Turne to Leander: hence-forth be all sounds,
Accents, and phrases that shew all griefes wounds,
Analisde in Leander. O black change!
Trumpets doe you with thunder of your clange,
Drive out this changes horror, my voyce faints:
Where all joy was, now shrieke out all complaints.
Thus cryed she, for her mixed soule could tell
Her love was dead: And when the morning fell
Prostrate upon the weeping earth for woe,
Blushes that bled out of her cheekes did show,
Leander brought by Neptune, brusde and torne
With Citties ruines he to Rocks had worne,
To filthie usering Rocks that would have blood,
Though they could get of him no other good.
She saw him, and the sight was much much more,
Then might have serv'd to kill her; should her store
Of giant sorrowes speake? Burst, dye, bleede,
And leave poore plaints to us that shall succeede.
She fell on her loves bosome, hugg'd it fast,
And with Leanders name she breath'd her last.
Neptune for pittie in his armes did take them,
Flung them into the ayre, and did awake them
Like two sweet birds surnam'd th'Acanthides,
Which we call Thistle-warps, that neere no Seas
Dare ever come, but still in couples flie,
And feede on Thistle tops, to testifie
The hardnes of their first life in their last:
The first in thornes of love, and sorrowes past.
And so most beautifull their colours show,
As none (so little) like them: her sad brow
A sable velvet feather covers quite,
Even like the forehead cloths that in the night,
Or when they sorrow, Ladies use to weare:
Their wings blew, red and yellow mixt appeare,
Colours, that as we construe colours paint
Their states to life; the yellow shewes their saint,
The devill Venus, left them; blew their truth,
The red and black, ensignes of death and ruth.
And this true honor from their love-deaths sprung,
They were the first that ever Poet sung.