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IN THE REIGN OF JAMES I.-A.D. 1603 TO A.D. 1625.



ROM its highest It increasing now to the third time of my being used in

point, reached in these services to Her Majesty's personal presentations, with the reign of James the ladies whom she pleaseth to honour; it was my first and I., the English special regard, to see that the nobility of the invention should drama, before that be answerable to the dignity of their persons. For which reign was at an

reason I chose the argument to be, A celebration of honourable

and true Fame, bred out of Virtue : observing that rule of the end, began to fall.

best artist, to suffer no object of delight to pass without his A mastery acquired under

mixture of profit and example. And because Her Majesty Elizabeth was

(best knowing that a principal part of life, in these spectacles,

lay in their variety) had commanded me to think on some brought into the

dance, or shew, that might precede hers, and have the place reign of James

of a foil, or false masque; I was careful to decline, not only by Shakespeare

from others, but mine own steps in that kind, since the last

and Ben Jonson. From a Polio of Ben Jonson's Works (1641).

year, I had an anti-masque of boys; and therefore now deThe company of vised, that twelve women, in the habit of hags, or witches, Lord Chamber

sustaining the persons of Ignorance, Suspicion, Credulity, lain's players, to which Shakespeare belonged, became

&c., the opposites to good Fame, should fill that part; not as after change of reign the King's players. Shake

a masque, but a spectacle of strangeness, producing multispeare was at that time thirty-nine years old, Ben plicity of gesture, and not unaptly sorting with the current, Jonson thirty. Shakespeare's "Othello” was pro- and whole fall of the device. duced at court on the 1st of November, 1604, and His Majesty, then, ng set, and the whole company in “Measure for Measure" a few weeks later. “Mac- full expectation, the part of the scene which first presented beth” and “ King Lear” were acted in 1606. itself was an ugly Hell; which flaming beneath, smoked unto “Julius Cæsar," " Antony and Cleopatra,” “Cymbe- the top of the roof. And in respect all evils are morally said line,” “ Coriolanus,” are all masterpieces of the reign to come from hell; as also from that observation of Torrentius of James I., produced before the date of the earliest upon Horace's Canidia, que tot instructa venenis, ex Orci notice of a performance of “The Tempest,” which is faucibus profecta videri possit :: these witches, with a kind in 1611. With that play, or with "

or with "King Henry

of hollow and infernal music, came forth from thence. First VIII.,” which was being acted when the Globe

one, then two, and three, and more, till their number increased Theatre was burnt down in 1613, Shakespeare's

to eleven; all differently attired : some with rats on their work as a dramatist ended. In his latter years

heads, some on their shoulders ; others with ointment-pots he had retired to Stratford, where he died at the

at their girdles; all with spindles, timbrels, rattles, or other age of fifty-two, on the 23rd of April, 1616.

venefical instruments, making a confused noise, with strange Ben Jonson having produced his “Sejanus," written

gestures. The device of their attire was Master Jones's, in the last days of Elizabeth's reign, turned to comedy with the invention, and architecture of the whole scene

, again, but did not continue the line of the three

and machine. 3 Only I prescribed them their properties of humorous dramatic homilies which had followed his

vipers, snakes, bones, herbs, roots, and other ensigns of their true comedy of “Every Man in his Humour." He

magic, out of the authority of ancient and late writers, returned to comedy proper, with the humours of men

wherein the faults are mine, if there be any found; and for shown through the skilful development of an ingenious

that cause I confess them. and well-considered plot. Three of his best comedies

These eleven witches beginning to dance (which is an usual “ Volpone, or the Fox,” in 1605 ; “ Epicene, or the

ceremony at their convents or meetings, where sometimes also Silent Woman,” in 1609; and “The Alchemist,” in

they are vizarded and masked), on the sudden one of them 1610-came between “Sejanus," and his one other

missed their chief, and interrupted the rest with this speech. tragedy, “Catiline,” in 1611. In 1605, he was also Hag. Sisters, stay, we want our Dame; fellow-worker with Marston and Chapman upon

Call upon her by her name, “ Fastward Hoe.” He had produced also Court

And the charm we use to say ; Masques—“The Masque of Blackness." in 1605;"

That she quickly anoint, and come away. “ The Masque and Barriers," represented in 1606 at

i Charm. Dame, dame! the watch is set: Whitehall, in the Christmas celebration of the mar

Quickly come, we all are met.riage of the Earl of Essex ;” “ The Masque of

From the lakes, and from the fens, Beauty," in 1608; in 1609, the third of the masques

From the rocks, and from the dens, in which the Queen herself took part,

From the woods, and from the caves,
From the church-yards, from the graves,



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THE MASQUE OF QUEENS; “ celebrated from the House of Fame, by the Queen of Great Britain, with her Ladies, at Whitehall, Feb. 2nd, 1609.”

1 A rule followed by every great English poet.

· Canidia, who, instructed in so many poisons, might seem to have come from the throat of Orcus. (A note on Horace, Epode 5.)

3 Inigo Jones, who became architect to the Queen in 1606, shared honours in the construction of these masques.

And lead on Murmur, with the cheeks deep hung;
She, Malice, whetting of her forkéd tongue;
And Malice, Impudence, whose forehead 's lost ;
Let Impudence lead Slander on, to boast
Her oblique look; and to her subtle side,
Thuu, black-mouth'd Execration, stand applied;
Traw to thee Bitterness, whose pores sweat gall;
She, flame-ey'd Rage; Rage, Mischief.

Hags. Here we are all.

Dame. Join now our hearts, we faithful opposites
To Fame and Glory. Let not these bright nights
Of honour blaze, thus to offend our eyes:
Shew ourselves truly envious, and let rise
Our wonted rages : do what may beseem
Such names,

and natures; Virtue else will deem
Our powers decreas'd, and think us banish'd earth,
No less than heaven. All her antique birth,
As Justice, Faith, she will restore; and, bold
Upon our sloth, retrieve her age of gold.
We must not let our native manners, thus,
Corrupt with ease. Ill lives not, but in us.
I hate to see these fruits of a soft peace,
And curse the piety gives it such increase.
Let us disturb it then, and blast the light;
Mix hell with heaven, and make nature fight
Within herself ; loose the whole hinge of things;
And cause the ends run back into their springs.

Hags. What our Dame bids us do,
We are ready for.

Dame. Then fall to.
But first relate me, what you have sought,
Where you have been, and what you have brought.

1 Hag. I have been all day, looking after
A raven, feeding upon a quarter;
And, soon, as she turn’d her beak to the south,
I snatch'd this morsel out of her mouth.

2 Hag. I have been gathering wolves' hairs,
The mad dog's foam, and the adder's ears;
The spurging of a dead man's eyes,
And all since the evening star did rise.

3 Hag. I last night lay all alone
On the ground, to hear the mandrake groan;
And pluck'd him up, though he grew full low;
And, as I had done, the cock did crow.

4 Hag. And I have been choosing out this skull,
From charnel houses, that were full;
From private grots, and public pits :
And frighted a sexton out of his wits.

5 Hag. Under a cradle I did creep,
By day; and when the child was asleep,
At night, I sucked the breath; and rose,
And pluck'd the nodding nurse by the nose.

6 Hag. I had a dagger: what did I with that?
Kill'd an infant to have his fat."
A piper it got, at a church-ale,
I bade him again blow wind in the tail.

7 Hag. A murderer, yonder, was hung in chains,
The sun and the wind had shrunk his veins;
I bit off a sinew; I clipp'd his hair ;
I brought off his rags that danced in the air.

8 Hag. The screech-owl's eggs, and the feathers bla: k, The blood of the frog, and the bone in his back,

***** mod, bare. Ne, ne folded bukle pul a dead

To whom "-", a sng, by way


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2 Infants' fat boiled was said to be the chief ingredient in the ointment which enabled witches to ride in the air. It was misel with poppy and narcotic drugs. The witches anointed themselves with it, and also sometimes their broomsticks, Killing of infants was also one of a witch's occasional recreations.

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I have been getting; and made of his skin
A purset, to keep sir Cranion in.

9 Hag. And I have been plucking, plants among,
Hemlock, henbane, adder's-tongue,
Night-shade, moon-wort, libbard's-bane;
And twice, by the dogs, was like to be ta'en.

10 Hag. I, from the jaws of a gardener's bitch,
Did snatch these bones, and then leap'd the ditch :
Yet went I back to the house again,
Killed the black cat, and here's the brain.

11 Hag. I went to the toad breeds under the wall,
I charmed him out, and he came at my call ;
I scratch'd out the eyes of the owl before,
I tore the bat's wing; what would you have more ?

Dame. Yes, I have brought, to help our vows,
Hornéd poppy, “ypress boughs,
The fig-tree wild that grows on tombs,
And juice that from the larch-tree comes,
The basilisk's blood, and the viper's skin :

And now our orgies let us begin.
Here the Dame put herself in the midst of them, and began her

follow ing Invocation :
You fiends and furies (if yet any be
Worse than ourselves), you that have quaked to see
These knots untied, and shrunk, when we have charmed;
You, that to arm us, have yourselves disarmed,
And to our powers resign’d your whips and brands
When we went forth, the scourge of men and lands;
You that have seen me ride, when Hecaté
Durst not take chariot; when the boisterous sca,
Without a breath of wind, hath knock'd the sky,
And that hath thundered, Jove not knowing why:
When we have set the elements at wars,
Made midnight see the sun, and day the stars ;
When the wing'd lightning, in the course hath staid,
And swiftest rivers have run back, afraid,
To see the corn remove, the groves to range,
Whole places alter, and the seasons change;
When the pale moon, at the first voice down fell
Poisoned, and durst not stay the second spell :
You, that have oft been conscious of these sights;
And thou, three-formed star, that on these nights
Art only powerful, to whose triple name
Thus we incline, once, twice, and thrice the same;
If now with rites profane, and foul enough,
We do invoke thee; darken all this roof,
With present fogs: exhale earth's rot'nest vapours,
And strike a blindness through these blazing tapers !

Come, let a murmuring charm resound,
The whilst we bury all i' the ground.
But first, see every foot be bare;

And every knce.

Hag. Yes, Dame, they are.
4 Charm. Deep, 0 deep we lay thee to sleep;

We leave thee drink by, if thou chance to be dry;
Both milk and blood, the dew and the flood.
We breathe in thy bed, at the foot and the head;
We cover thee warm, that thou take no harm:
And when thou dost wake,

Dame carth shall quake,
And the houses shake,
And her belly shall ake,
As her back were brake,
Such a birth to make,
As is the blue drake:
Whose form thou shalt take.

Dame. Never a star yet shot! Where be the ashes ?

Hag. Here in the pot.

Dame. Cast them up; and the flint-stone
Over the left shoulder-bone;
Into the west.

Hag. It will be best.
5 Charm. The sticks are across, there can be no loss,

The sage is rotten, the sulphur is gotten
Up to the sky, that was in the ground,
Follow it then with our rattles, round;
Under the bramble, over the brier,
A little more heat will set it on fire:
Put it in mind to do it kind,
Flow water and blow wind.
Rouncy is over, Robble is under,
A flash of light, and a clap of thunder,
A storm of rain, another of hail.
We all must home in the egg-shell sail ;
The mast is made of a great piri,
The tackle of cobweb, the sail as thin,

And if we go through and not fall in
Dame. Stay, all our charms do nothing win
Upon the night; our labour dies,
Our magic feature will not rise-
Nor yet the storm! we must repeat
More direful voices far, and beat
The ground with vipers, till it sweat.
6 Charm. Bark dogs, wolves howl,

Seas roar, woods roll,
Clouds crack, all be black,

But the light our charms do make.
Dame. Not yet! my rage begins to swell;
Darkness, Devils, Night and Hell,
Do not thus delay my spell.
I call you once, and I call you twice;
I beat you again, if you stay my thrice:
Thorough these crannies where I peep,
I'll let in the light to see your sleep.
And all the secrets of your sway
Shall lie as open to the day,
As unto me. Still are you deaf!
Reach me a bough, that ne'er bare leaf,
To strike the air: and Aconite,
To hurl upon this glaring light;
A rusty knife to wound mine arm;
And as it drops I'll speak a charm,
Shall cleave the ground, as low as lies
Old shrunk-up Chaos, and let rise,
Once more, his dark and reeking head,
To strike the world, and nature dead,

Until my magic birth be bred.
7 Charm. Black go in, and blacker come ont;
At thy going down, we give thee a shout.

At thy rising again, thou shalt have two,
And if thou dost what we would have thee do,
Thou shalt have three, thou shalt have four,
Thou shalt have ten, thou shalt have a score.

Hoo! Har! Har! Hoo! 8 Charm. A cloud of pitch, a spur and a switch,

To haste him away, and a whirlwind play,
Before and after, with thunder for laughter,
And storms for joy of the roaring boy;

His head of a drake, his tail of a snake. 9 Charm. About, about, and about,

Till the mists arise, and the lights fly out,

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Nor on my arm advanced with Pallas' shield,
(By which, my face aversed, in open field
I slew the Gorgon) for an empty name :
When Virtue cut off Terror, he gat Fame.
And if, when Fame was gotten, Terror died,
What black Erynnis, or more hellish Pride,
Durst arm these hags, now she is grown and great,
To think they could her glories once defeat ?
I was her parent, and I am her strength,
Heroic Virtue sinks not under length
Of years, or ages; but is still the same
While he preserves as when he got good fame.
My daughter, then, whose glorious house you see
Built all of sounding brass, whose columns be
Men-making poets, and those well-made men,
Whose strife it was to have the happiest pen
Renown them to an after-life, and not
With pride to scorn the muse, and die forgot;
She, that enquireth into all the world,
And hath about her vaulted palace hurled
All rumours and reports, or true or vain,
What utmost lands or deepest seas contain,
But only hangs great actions on her file;
She, to this lesser world, and greatest isle,
To-night sounds honour, which she would have seen
In yond' bright bevy, each of them a queen.
Eleven of them are of times long gone.
Penthesilea, the brave Amazon,
Swift-foot Camilla, queen of Volscia,
Victorious Thomyris of Scythia,
Chaste Artemisia, the Carian dame,
And fair-hair'd Berenice, Egypt's fame,
Hypsicratea, glory of Asia,
Candace, pride of Ethiopia,
The Britain honour, Boadicea,
The virtuous Palmyrene, Zenobia,
The wise and warlike Goth, Amalasunta,
The bold Valasca of Bohemia;
These, in their lives, as fortunes, crown'd the choice
Of womankind, and 'gainst all opposite voice
Made good to time, had, after death, the claim
To live eterniz'd in the House of Fame.
Where hourly hearing (as what there is old :)
The glories of Bell-anna so well told,
Queen of the Ocean; how that she alone
Possest all virtues, for which one by one
They were so fam’d: and wanting then a head
To form that sweet and gracious pyramid

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columns, he chose the statues of the most excellent poets, as Homer, Virgil, Lucan, &c., as being the substantial supporters of Fame, For the upper, Achilles, Æneas, Cæsar, and those great heroes, which these poets had celebrated. All which stood as in massy gold. Between the pillars, underneath, were figured land-battles, sea-fights, triumphs, loves, sacrifices, and all magnificent subjects of honour, in brass, and heightened with silver. In which he profest to follow that noble description made by Chaucer of the place. Above were sited the masquers, over whose heads he devised two eminent figures of Honour and Virtue for the arch. The friezes, both below and above, were filled with several-coloured lights, like emeralds, rubies, sapphires, carbuncles, &c., the reflex of which, with our lights placed in the concave, upon the masquers' habits, was full of glory. These babits had in them the excellency of all device and riches; and were worthily varied by his invention, to the nations whereof they were queens. Nor are these alone his due ; but divers other accessions to the strangeness and beauty of the spectacle : as the hell, the going about of the chariots, and binding the witches, the turning machine, with the presentation of Fame. All which I willingly acknowlelo for him: siuce it is a virtue planted in good natures, that what respects they wish to obtain fruitfully from others, they will give ingenuously themselves."

Hem Nom Niven in a note the following description of Inigo Inson for this scene :-" There rests only that we give the

spose we promined of the scene, which was the house of Fame. Himne mud ornament of which (as is profest before) was medy mastor Jonon's invention and design. First, for the lower

Wherein they sit, it being the sov’reign place
Of all that palace, and reserved to grace
The worthiest queen: these, without envy' on her,
In life, desired that honour to confer,
Which, with their death, no other should enjoy.
She this embracing with a virtuous joy,
Far from self-love, as humbling all her worth
To him that gave it, hath again brought forth
Their names to memory; and means this night,
To make them once more visible to light:
And to that light, from whence her truth of spirit
Confesseth all the lustre of her merit;
To you, most royal and most happy king,
Of whom Fame's house in every part doth ring
For every virtue, but can give no increase :
Not, though her loudest trumpet blaze your peace.
Lo you, that cherish every great example
Contracted in yourself; and being so ample
A field of honour, cannot but embrace
A spectacle, so full of love, and grace
Unto your court: where every princely dame
Contends to be as bounteous of her fame
To others, as her life was good to her ;
For by their lives they only did confer
Good on themselves; but, by their fame, to yours,
And every age, the benefit endures.

griffons, with their torch-bearers, and four other hags. Then the last, which was drawn by lions, and more eminent (wherein Her Majesty was), and had six torch-bearers more, peculiar to her, with the like number of hags. After which, a full triumphant music, singing this song, while they rode in state about the stage:

Help, help, all tongues, to celebrate this wonder:
The voice of Fame should be as loud as thunder.
Her house is all of echo made,

Where never dies the sound;
And as her brow the clouds invade,

Her feet do strike the ground.
Sing then, good Fame, that 's out of Virtue born :
For, who doth Fame neglect, doth Virtue scorn.

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Here the throne wherein they sat, being machina versatilis,

suddenly changed; and in the place of it appeared Fama bona, as she is described (in Iconolog. di Cesare Ripa) attirer in white, with white wings, having a collar of gold about her neck, and a heart hanging at it: which Orus Apollo, in his hierogl., interprets the note of a good Fame.

In her right hand she bore a trumpet, in her left an olire-branch : and for her state, it was, as Virgil describes her, at the full, her feet on the ground, and her head in the clouds. She, after the inusic had done, which waited on the turning of the machine, called from thence to Heroic l'irtue, and spake this following speech.

Here they lighted from their chariots, and danced forth their first dance: then a second, immediately following it : both right curious, and full of subtle and excellent changes, and seemed performed with no less spirits, than of those they personated. The first was to the cornets, the second to the violins. After which, they took out the men, and danced the measures; entertaining the time, almost to the space of an hour, with singular variety: when, to give them rest, from the music which attended the chariots, by that most excellent tenor voice, and exact singer (her Majesty's servant, master Jo. Allen) this ditty was sung:

When all the ages of the earth
Were crown'd, but in this famous birth;
And that, when they would boast their store
Of worthy queens, they knew no more :
How happier is that age, can give

A queen, in whom all they do live! After it, succeeded their third dance; than which, a more numerous composition could not be seen: graphically disposed into letters, and honouring the name of the most sweet and ingenious prince, Charles duke of York. Wherein, beside that principal grace of perspicuity, the motions were so even and apt, and their expression so just, as if mathematicians had lost proportion, they might there have found it. The author was master Thomas Giles. After this, they danced galliards and corrantos. And then their last dance, no less elegant in the place than the rest, with which they took their chariots again, and triumphing about the staye, had their return to the House of Fame celebrated with this last song; whose notes (as the former) were the work and honour of my excellent friend, Alfonso Ferrabosco.

Who, Virtue, can thy power forget,
That sees these live, and triumph yet?
Th’ Assyrian pomp, the Persian pride,
Greeks' glory, and the Romans' died :

And who yet imitate
Their noises tarry the same fate.
Force greatness all the glorious ways

You can, it soon decays;
But so good Fame shall never :

Her triumphs, as their causes, are for ever. To conclude which, I know no worthier way of cpilogue, than the celebration of who were the celebraters.

Virtue, my father and my honour; thou
That mad'st me good as great; and dar'st avow
No Fame for thine but what is perfect : aid,
To-night, the triumphs of thy white-wing'd maid.
Do those renowned queens all utmost rites
Their states can ask. This is a night of nights.
In mine own chariots let them, crowned, ride;
And mine own birds and beasts, in gears applied
To draw them forth. l'nto the first car tie
Far-sighted eagles, to note Fame's sharp eye.
into the second, griffons, that design
Swiftness and strength, two other gifts of mine.
Unto the last, our lions, that imply
The top of graces, state, and majesty.
And let those hags be led as captives, bound
Before their wheels, whilst I my trumpet sound.
At which the loud music sounded as before, to give the

masquers timo of descending. By this time, imagine the masquers descended; and again mounted into three triumphant chariots, ready to come forth. The first four were drawn with eagles (whereof I gave the reason, as of the rest, in Fame's speech), their four torchbarers attending on the chariots' sides, and four of the hags bund before them. Then followed the second, drawn by

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