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SHAKERLEY MARMION was born at Aynho*, near Brackley, in the county of Northampton, where his father was lord of the manor, and in possession of a considerable estate. He received the early part of his education at the free-school, at Thame, in the county of Oxford, under the care of Richard Boucher, commonly called Butcher, the master thereof. In the year 1617, he became a gentleman commoner of Wadham college, in Oxford, and in 1624', took the degree of master of arts. Anthony Wood 2 says,
that he was a “goodly proper gentleman, and had once in his pos“ session seven hundred pounds per annum,
at least.” The whole of this ample fortune he dissipated ; after which he went into the Low Countries; but not meeting with promotion according to his expectation, he returned to England, and was admitted one of the troop raised by Sir John Suckling, for the use of King Charles the First, in his expedition against the Scots, in the year 1639; but falling sick at York, he returned to London, where he died in the same years. Besides several poems, scattered about in different publications, he wrote three playst, viz.
* Sume authorities state that he was born “ about the beginning “ of January, 1602 ;” and this date seems consistent with the time wben he was entered at Wadham College. C.
1 Langbaine, p. 345.
* Athena Oxoniensis, vol. 2. p. 19. Oldys, in his MS. notes on Langbaine, says, it was our author's father who squandered away his fortune : but as he quotes no authority for this assertion, I have followed Wood's account.
Oldys. MS. notes to Langbaine. + The Crafty Merchant, or the Soldier'd Citizen, has also been attributed to Shakerley Marmion, but on no sufficient evidence, as well as a Pastoral, called The Faithful Shepherd, which Phillips assigns to him. The first of these, which evidently was a comedy, was never printed. C.
1. “ Hollands Leaguer, an excellent comedy, as it “ hath bin lately and often acted with great applause " by the high and mighty Prince Charles his servants, “ at the private house in Salisbury-court, 1632.” 4to.
To the Dramatis Personæ of this play, the names of the several performers are added*
Oldys, in his MS. notes on Langbaine, says, there is a tract in prose called Hollands Leaguer, or an historical discourse of the life and actions of Donna Britannicat, the arch mistress of the wicked women of Eutopia ; wherein is detected the notorious sin of Pandarism, and the execrable life of the lururious impudent. 4to. 1632.
2. “ A Fine Companions, acted before the king and
* They may be worth subjoining in a note: they were, William Browne, Ellis Worth, Andrew Keyne, Matthew Smith, James Sneller, Henry Gradwell, Thomas Bond, Richard Fowler, Edward May, Robert Huyt, Robert Stafford, Richard Godwin, John Wright, Richard Fouch, Arthur Savill, and Samuel Mannery. The last six played the female parts in the play. C.
+ Oldys seems to have omitted one of the names of this distinguished lady, who is called in the title-page of the tract, Dona Britanica Hollandia. It was printed in London, for Richard Barnes. C.
# The Prologue is a short conversation between a Critic and the Author, which contains the following hit, perhaps at Ben Jonson:
“ Critic. Are you the author of this play?
Critic. Out o' this poetry! I wonder what
Author. What say you, sir ?
Critic. Oh, you are deaf to all
Author. What if I do?
Critic. By my consent, I'll have you Banish'd the stage, proscrib’d and interdicted Castalian water, and poetical fire." C.'