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Time VINDICATED, &c.] This Entertainment, which forms a kind of retort courteous to the scurrilous satires now dis. persed with mischievous activity, appears only in the second folio. The light parts of it are composed with great gaiety and humour; and the singing and dancing must have been given with great effect among the rich and beautiful concomi. tants of scenery, &c. that surrounded them.
In the Dulwich College MS. this is called the Prince's Masque ; its unusual splendor seems to have induced the Master of the Revels (Sir John Astley) to enter into a more particular mention of it than is common with these costive gentlemen.
“ Upon New-year's day at night, the Alchemist was acted by the King's players.
“Upon Sonday, being the 19th of January, (1623) the Princes Masque appointed for Twelfe daye, was performed. The speeches and songs composed by Mr. Ben Johnson, and the scene made by Mr. Inigo Jones, which was three times changed during the tyme of the Masque, wherein the first that was discovered was a prospective of Whitehall, with the Banqueting House ; the second was the Masquers in a cloud; and the third a forest. The French embassador was present,
" Antemasques were of tumblers and jugglers. The Prince did lead the measures with the French embassadors wife.
" The measures, braules, corrantos, and galliards being ended, the Masquers with the ladies did daunce two contrey daunces, where the French embassadors wife and Mademoysal St. Luke did daunce." Malone's Hist. of the Eng. Stage.
The Court being seated, a Trumpet sounded, and
Fame entered, followed by the Curious, the EYED, the EARED, and the Nosed.'
Fame. Give ear, the worthy, hear what Fame
proclaims. Ears. What, what ? is't worth our ears? Eyes, Or eyes ?
Nose. Or noses?
Eyes. We come to spy.
Fame. More than you understand, my hot inquisitors.
Nose. We cannot tell,
meant. Nose. And nose the thing you scent not. First,
whence come you? Fame. I came from Saturn. Ears. Saturn ! what is he? Nose. Some Protestant, I warrant you, a time
server, As Fame herself is.
The Eyed, &c.] It appears, from the sequel, that the masks of the performers were furnished with numerous eyes, ears, and noses, respectively.
Fame. You are near the right. Indeed, he's Time itself, and his name Chronos. Nose. How ! Saturn ! Chronos! and the Time
itself! You are found: enough. A notable old pagan! Ears. One of their gods, and eats up his own
children. Nose. A fencer, and does travel with a scythe, 'Stead of a long sword,
Eyes. Hath been oft call'd from it,
Ears. As Cincinnatus
Nose. O, we shall have his Saturnalia.
To be their lord of Misrule.] “ In the feast of Christmass, there was in the king's house, wheresoever he was lodged, a lord of misrule, or master of merry disports ; and the like had ye in the house of every noble inan of honour, or good worship, were he spiritual or temporal.” Stow. In the following verses the poet alludes to that liberty which reigned amongst the Romans during the Saturnalia, or feasts of Saturn. These were appointed to remind them of the general equality between all men in the first age. WHAL.
Ears. It was a brave time that!
Eyes. This will be better: I spy it coming, peace! All the impostures, The prodigies, diseases, and distempers, The knaveries of the time, we shall see all now. Ears. And hear the passages, and several
humours Of men, as they are sway'd by their affections : Some grumbling, and some mutining, some
scoffing, Some pleased, some pining; at all these we
laughing. Nose. I have it here, here, strong, the sweat
Eyes. My four eyes itch for it.
Nose. That's the fear.
Chro. What, what, my friends, will not this
room receive ? Eyes. That which the Time is presently to
shew us. Chro. The Time! Lo, I, the man that hate the
Fame. Who's this?
His forehead tipt with bays, do you not know him? Eyes. Yes, Fame must know him, all the town
admires him. Chro. If you would see Time quake and shake,
but name us, It is for that, we are both beloved and famous. Eyes. We know, sir : but the Time's now come
about. Ears. And promiseth all liberty. Nose. Nay, license. Eyes. We shall do what we list. Ears. Talk what we list. Nose. And censure whom we list, and how we
list. Chro. Then I will look on Time, and love the
same, And drop my whip: who's this? my mistress,
Fame ! The lady whom I honour, and adore ! What luck had I not to see her before ! Pardon me, madam, more than most accurst, That did not spy your ladyship at first; T' have given the stoop, and to salute the skirts Of her, to whom all ladies else are flirts. It is for you, I revel so in rhyme, Dear mistress, not for hope I have, the Time Will grow the better by it: to serve Fame Is all my end, and get myself a name. Fame. Away, I know thee not, wretched im
postor, Creature of glory, mountebank of wit, Self-loving braggart, Fame doth sound no trumpet To such vain empty fools : ’tis Infamy Thou serv'st, and follow'st, scorn of all the Muses! Go revel with thine ignorant admirers, Let worthy names alone.
Chro. O, you, the Curious,