« ZurückWeiter »
printed, &c. 1792) is a curious specimen of the ancient moralities, and forms a most entertaining commentary on the manners of the times in which it was written. The scenes of “ the poor man and “ the pardoner,” (beginning at page 61) and of “ the parliament of correction," p. 141, are, perhaps, the most striking.
But the most pleasing of all this author's works is certainly the “ History of Squire Meldrum,” contained in Mr. Pinkerton's re-publication, (Vol. I. p. 147). The romantic and singular, but authentic, character of the hero, is painted with great strength and simplicity; and the versification possesses a degree of facility and elegance at least equal to the most polished compositions of Drayton. Of this the reader will judge from the following specimen, which is taken from the beginning of the second book. (Pink. Scot. Poems, Vol. I. p. 179, &c.)
And as it did approach the night,
Of this triumphant pleasant place,
This squyer, and the lady gent,
He found his chamber well array’d, With dornick-work 5 on board display'd.
* Lady Gleneagles. (Vide Lindsay's Hist. of Scot. p 200.) · Adventures. Fr. 3. Tedious. Sax. 4 Since, afterwards. • Damasked ? (Pink. Gloss.) Ornicle, in La Combe's
Of venison he had his wale ;'
So, to hear more of his narration,
That night he sleeped never a wink,
The adventure which follows, nearly resembles
Dict, du Vieux Lang. is interpreted “ sorte d'etoffe fort 66 riche;" and linen imitating the patterns of such stuff, might be called travail d'ornicle. In Dutch, doornick is the name for tournay; the word, therefore, may be synonimous with Flemish linen.
1 Choice. Ruddiman's Gloss. • Jelly. 3 Fared.
that of Dido and Æneas; but Lindsay, though more circumstantial, is less delicate than Virgil in relating the good fortune of his hero; which is the more to be lamented, because his description contains some curious particulars respecting the customs and fashions of the age.
Sir David Lindsay has enumerated no less than seven contemporary poets, of whom, however, we have no remains, excepting three pieces composed by one of the Stewarts, and inserted in p. 146, 148, and 151, of lord Hailes's extracts from the Bannatyne MSS. They are principally remarkable for the freedom with which they censure the conduct of king James V.
But the finest specimen of Scotch poetry, during this period, is a piece which is quoted by Mr. Tyrwhitt, from the Maitland MSS. under the title of the “ Mourning Maiden,” and printed by Mr. Pinkerton. (Anc. Scot. Poems, 1786, p. 205.)
The Mourning Maiden.
Still under the leavis green,
This hinder day I went alone;
To the king of love she made her moan.
· Virgin. Sax.
• Moan, complain.
She sighed sely? sore;
As red gold wire shined her hair,
And all in green the may she glaid ; ;
Under her belt were arrows braid.4
“Wan-weird !”7 she said,“ what have I wrought, . “ 'That on me kyth 8 has all this care? “ True love, so dear I have thee bought !
“ Certes, so shall I do no mair, 9
· Wonderfully? sellie. Saxi • Endured; dreogan. Sax. 3 Glided along.
4 Broad. 6 After that noble maid. Free, in Old English, is almost constantly used in the sense of noble or gentcel, 6 Abode.
7 Misfortune. • Cast.