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ance, ‘apparelled like a ruler or magistrate’, to whom Sin, the Vice, acts as servant. All his suitors and clients come before him—Gregory Graceless, Moneyless-and-friendless, Williamwith-the-two-wives, Nichol-never-out-of-the-law, Sir Laurence Livingless," and finally, Mother Croote, who, being a hundred years old, and very rich, wishes to purchase a young husband of twenty-three. Moneyless-and-friendless is kicked out ; but to all the rest, on receiving, certain presents, All-for-money makes liberal promises. This brings us to the catastrophe, or enforcement of the moral, showing the consequences of avarice:—‘Judas commeth in like a damned soule in blacke, painted with flames of fire, and with a fearefull vizard'; and he is followed by Dives, “with such like apparel as Judas hath'. Damnation pursues them, and drives them before him, while they make ‘a pitiefull noyse'. Godly Admonition moralizes on all that has been represented, and being joined by Virtue, Humility, and Charity, the wearisome and complicated piece concludes. It would be easy to enumerate more productions of this class, and to extend to a much greater length the analysis of them, without exhausting the subject, however it might try the reader's patience. The Three Ladies of London, 1584.”
• A short quotation from what is said by Sir Laurence Livingless, a Roman Catholic priest, will farther show the protestant tendency of A// for Money. Sin asks him how many Epistles St. Paul wrote, and Sir Laurence thus answers:—
“By the masse, he writ to manie. I would they were all burned;
* This performance seems to have been popular, and it is mentioned & 5
and The Three Lords and Three Ladies of London, 1590, are among the latest specimens of the kind, and in which an attempt is made to diversify the performance by a good deal of temporary allusion and general satire. The moral of the first of these productions, as it is stated on the title-page, precisely explains the nature of it: ‘wherein is notablie declared and set forth how, by meanes of Lucar, Love and Conscience is so corrupted, that the one is married to Dissimulation, the other fraught with all Abhomination.” An illustration of the temporal allusions may be taken from The Three Lords and Three Ladies of London: the Clown of the performance is named Simplicity, and he carries a basket full of wares, ballads, and prints. Among the ballads he enumerates, ‘Chipping Norton, a mile from Chappell o' the heath’—‘a lamentable ballad of the burning of the Pope's dog'—‘the sweet ballade of the Lincolnshire bagpipes'—and ‘Peggy and Willy', with the mournful burden—
“But now he is dead and gone,
One of the allegorical characters, afterwards takes a ‘picture' out of the Clown's basket, and asks whom it represents Simplicity replies that it is Tarlton, which is followed by the question, ‘What was that Tarlton P’ Simplicity then informs him that Tarlton was originally a water-bearer, adding—
‘O, it was a fine fellow as ere was borne !
in more than one tract of the time: after the publication of The Three Lordes, etc., of London, in 1590, Zhe Zhree Ladies of London was reprinted in 1592.
But it was the merriest fellow, that had such jestes in store, That if thou hadst seene him, thou wouldst have laughed thy hart sore.’ This Moral was printed two years subsequent to Tarlton's death, which happened on the 3rd of September 1588;" and it was probably first acted soon after that event. It is to be observed also, with reference to this production, that the greater part of it is in blank verse, a circumstance that does not belong to any other Moral that we are aware of. A still later, and a duller performance of this class is The Contention between Liberality and Prodigality, I6O2, which, as
* The Prologue to Cuck-yueames Errant and Cuckold's Errant, is supposed to be spoken by Tarlton's Ghost, and he there mentions his own death in the year of the defeat of the Armada. This play is in MS. in a volume containing five others by the same author (William Percy, writer of Sommets to the Fairest Caelia, 1594). The name of W. Percy is now, for the first time, connected with our dramatic literature, but his productions of this kind, like his sonnets, have little merit; as, however, they importantly illustrate the condition of the stage at the period when they were written (soon after the year 1600), we may have occasion to refer to them hereafter. They are all in the peculiar handwriting of the author, who subscribes most of them in the following manner:—
His name is nowhere inserted at length, but his authorship has been clearly ascertained. He was of the old Northumberland family. One of the latest notices of Richard Tarlton occurs in a tract printed in 1642, called The Pigge's Corantoe, or Mewes from the AVorth, where the following lines are attributed to him, which have since often received a different application:— ‘The King of France, with forty thousand men, Went up a hill, and so came downe agen.’ This is called in the tract of 1642 “old Tarlton's Song’.
is stated on the title-page, and as appears by the epilogue, was acted before Queen Elizabeth. The forty-third year of her reign is mentioned in the body of the piece; but it possesses few of the improvements which, towards the close of the sixteenth century, were introduced into Moral-plays. Our only reason for mentioning it is, that it was one of the last, as well as one of the worst, of its kind. It has been attributed to the celebrated Robert Greene, and he might, possibly, have had some concern in it prior to 1592. We ought, perhaps, to have noticed earlier, among dramas of in some respects a comic character, but of decidedly a religious tendency, a manuscript preserved in the library of Trinity College, Dublin, which contains some peculiar features. It is a religious play of a date, probably, not much anterior to the reign of Henry VIII, the avowed object of which is to enforce the doctrine of the divinity of the Sacrament of the Eucharist. Certain Jews have obtained possession of a portion of the holy wafer, and determine to expose it to every species of torture and trial, to ascertain its power and divinity—whether, in fact, the doctrine of ‘the real presence' were true or false. We need not enter into detail regarding the trials to which the Host is exposed by its enemies; but we may mention that, for the sake merely of what, in the language of the stage, is called ‘comic business', a Dutch or German Doctor is introduced, and figures very prominently near the conclusion of the performance, though he does not in any way contribute to what may be considered the catastrophe that catastrophe is thus brought about. The Jews having failed in all their attempts by force and fire to destroy the holy wafer, at last resolve to put it into an oven in which they light a blazing fire ; into this fire they throw the wafer, shut the door, and await the result. Presently they are alarmed, and, indeed, struck down by a tremendous noise, followed by an awful ex
268 THE HISTORY OF DRAMATIC POETRY.
plosion: the oven bursts, the fire blazes, and in the smoke the Saviour is seen to ascend to Heaven where he is received by a chorus of Angels. It need hardly be added, that the Jews are supposed to be converted on the spot, and the drama ends with the triumph of the holy wafer. The dialogue of the piece is of the usual description in Miracle-plays, as handed down from times anterior to the period when this production was, probably, last performed, and it may be conjectured that the Doctor of Medicine was a late introduction for the better amusement of spectators. It is purely a Miracle-play, and it is obvious that some portions of it are more modern than others; and that various passages, and even entire speeches, were inserted, from time to time, containing temporary allusions, with an especial view to the gratification of spectators. No portion, however, can have been much older than a period when protestant doctrines on the question of the Eucharist began to prevail : against these it was especially directed. The Doctor is a mere piece of comic characterism, in no way contributing to support the dogma of the divine presence in the Sacrament, and all the other characters are supposed to be malignant and incredulous Israelites.