Now then goe we to the most important
imputations laid to the poore Poets, for ought I can
yet learne, they are these. First that there beeing
manie other more frutefull knowledges, a man
might better spend his time in them, then in this.
Secondly, that it is the mother of lyes. Thirdly, that
it is the nurse of abuse, infecting vs with many pestilent desires, with a Sirens sweetnesse, drawing the
minde to the Serpents taile of sinfull fansies ; and
herein especially Comedies giue the largest field to
eare, as Chawcer saith, how both in other nations and
in ours, before Poets did soften vs, we were full of
courage giuen to martial exercises, the pillers of manlike libertie, and not lulled a sleepe in shadie idlenes,
with Poets pastimes. And lastly and chiefly, they cry
out with open mouth as if they had ouershot Robin-hood,
that Plato banished them out of his Commonwealth.