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Cant. VII.

Therein the changes infinite beholde,
Which to her creatures euery minute chaunce;
Now, boyling hot:streight, friezing deadly cold:
Now, faire sun-shine, that makes all skip and

Streight, bitterstorms and balefullcountenance, That makes them all to shiuer and to shake: Rayne, hayle, and snowe do pay them sad [quake) And dreadfull thunder-claps (that make them With flames and flashing lights that thousand changes make.



Last is the fire: which, though it liue for euer,
Wee see his parts, so soone as they do seuer,
Ne can be quenched quite; yet, euery day,
To lose their heat, and shortly to decay;
So, makes himself his owne consuming pray.
Ne any liuing creatures doth he breed:
But all, that are of others bredd, doth slay;
And, with their death, his cruell life dooth feed;
Nought leauing but their barren ashes, without


Thus, all these fower (the which the ground-work


Of all the world, and of all liuing wights)
To thousand sorts of Change we subiect see.
Yet are they chang'd (by other wondrousslights)
Into themselues, and lose their natiue mights;
The Fire to Aire, and th'Ayre to Water sheere,
And Water into Earth: yet Water fights
With Fire, and Aire with Earth approaching


Yet all are in one body, and as one appeare. 26

So, in them all raignes Mutabilitie;

How-euer these, that Gods themselues do call, Of them doe claime the rule and souerainty : As, Vesta, of the fire æthereall;

Vulcan, of this, with vs so vsuall; Ops, of the earth; and Iuno of the Ayre; Neptune, of Seas; and Nymphes, of Riuers all. And all the rest, which they vsurp, be all my For, all those Riuers to me subiect are:



Which to approuen true, as I haue told,
Vouchsafe, O goddesse, to thy presence call
The rest which doe the world in being hold:
As, times and seasons of the yeare that fall:
Of all the which, demand in generall,
Or iudge thy selfe, by verdit of thine eye,
Whether to me they are not subiect all.
Nature did yeeld thereto; and by-and-by,
Bade Order call them all, before her Maiesty.


So, forth issew'd the Seasons of the yeare; First, lusty Spring, all dight in leaues of flowres That freshly budded and new bloosmes did beare (In which a thousand birds had built their bowres

That sweetly sung, to call forth Paramours) : And in his hand a iauelin he did beare, And on his head (as fit for warlike stoures) A guilt engrauen morion he did weare; That as some did him loue, so others did him feare.


Then came the iolly Sommer, being dight
In a thin silken cassock coloured greene,
That was vnlyned all, to be more light:
And on his head a girlond well beseene
He wore, from which as he had chauffed been
The sweat did drop; and in his hand he bore
A boawe and shaftes, as he in forrest greene
Had hunted late the Libbard or the Bore,


Next came fresh Aprill full of lustyhed,
And wanton as a Kid whose horne new buds :
Vpon a Bull he rode, the same which led
Europa floting through th'Argolick fluds:
His hornes were gilden all with golden studs
And garnished with garlonds goodly dight
Of all the fairest flowres and freshest buds
Which th'earth brings forth, and wet he seem'd
in sight

With waues, through which he waded for his
loues delight.

Then came faire May, the fayrest maydon ground, Deckt all with dainties of her seasons pryde, And throwing flowres out of her lap around: Vpon two brethrens shoulders she did ride, The twinnes of Leda; which on eyther side Supported her like to their soueraine Queene. Lord! how all creatures laught, when her they spide,

And now would bathe his limbes, with labor And Cupid selfe about her fluttred all in greene. And leapt and daunc't as they had rauisht beene!

heated sore.

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Next him, September marched eeke on foote;
Yet was he heauy laden with the spoyle
Of haruests riches, which he made his boot,
And him enricht with bounty of the soyle:
In his one hand, as fit for haruests toyle,
He held a knife-hook; and in th'other hand
A paire of waights, with which he did assoyle
Both more and lesse, where it in doubt did


And lastly, came cold February, sitting
In an old wagon, for he could not ride;
Drawne of two fishes for the season fitting,
Which through the flood before did softly slyde
And swim away: yet had he by his side
His plough and harnesse fit to till the ground,
And tooles to prune the trees, before the pride
Of hasting Prime did make them burgein

And equall gaue to each as Iustice duly scann'd. So past the twelue Months forth, and their dew

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And after these, there came the Day, and Night,
Riding together both with equall pase,
Th'one on a Palfrey blacke, the other white;
But Night had couered her vncomely face
With a blacke veile, and held in hand a mace,
On top whereof the moon and stars were pight,
Andsleep and darknesse round about did trace:
But Day did beare, vpon his scepters hight,
The goodly Sun, encompast all with beames


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But you Dan Ioue, that only constant are,
And King of all the rest, as ye do clame,
Are you not subiect eeke to this misfare?
Then let me aske you this withouten blame,
Where were ye borne ? some say in Crete by


Others in Thebes, and others other-where; But wheresoeuer they comment the same, They all consent that ye begotten were, And borne here in this world, ne other can appeare. 54 Then are ye mortall borne, and thrall to me, Vnlesse the kingdome of the sky yee make Immortall, and vnchangeable to bee; Besides, that power and vertue which ye spake, That ye here worke, doth many changes take, And your owne natures change: for, each of you That vertue haue, or this, or that to make, Is checkt and changed from his nature trew, By others opposition or obliquid view.

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Then since within this wide great Vniuerse
Nothing doth firme and permanent appeare,
But all things tost and turned by transuerse:
What then should let, but I aloft should reare
My Trophee, and from all, the triumph beare?
Nowiudge then (Othou greatest goddesse trew!)
According as thy selfe doest see and heare,
And vnto me addoom that is my dew;
That is the rule of all, all being rul'd by you.

So hauing ended, silence long ensewed,
Ne Nature to or fro spake for a space,
But with firme eyes affixt, the ground still

Meane while, all creatures, looking in her face, Expecting th'end of this so doubtfull case, Did hang in long suspence what would ensew, Towhether sideshould fallthe soueraigne place: At length, she looking vp with chearefull view, The silence brake, and gaue her doome in speeches few.

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