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Then heauenly branches did I see arise Out of the fresh and lustie Lawrell tree, Amidst the yong greene wood: of Paradise Some noble plant I thought my selfe to see: Such store of birds therein yshrowded were, Chaunting in shade their sundrie melodie, That with their sweetnes I was rauish't nere. While on this Lawrell fixed was mine eie, The skie gan euerie where to ouercast, And darkned was the welkin all about, When sudden flash of heauens fire out brast, And rent this royall tree quite by the roote, Which makes me much and euer to complaine: For no such shadow shalbe had againe.

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Within this wood, out of a rocke did rise A spring of water, mildly rumbling downe, Whereto approched not in anie wise The homely shepheard, nor the ruder clowne; But manie Muses, and the Nymphes withall, That sweetly in accord did tune their voyce To the soft sounding of the waters fall, That my glad hart thereat did much reioyce. But while herein I tooke my chiefe delight, I saw (alas) the gaping earth deuoure The spring, the place, and all cleane out of sight.

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Which yet aggreeues my hart euen to this houre,

And wounds my soule with rufull memorie, To see such pleasures gon so suddenly.

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I saw a Phoenix in the wood alone, With purple wings, and crest of golden hewe; Strange bird he was, whereby I thought anone, That of some heauenly wight I had the vewe; Vntill he came vnto the broken tree, 61 And to the spring, that late deuoured was. What say I more? each thing at last we see Doth passe away: the Phoenix there alas

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Daphnaïda.

An Elegie vpon the

death of the noble and vertuous
Douglas Howard, Daughter and
heire of Henry Lord Howard, Vif-
count Byndon, and wife of Ar-
thure Gorges Efquier.

Dedicated to the Right honorable the Lady
Helena,Marqueffe of Northampton.

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Printed for William Ponsonby,dwelling in Paules Churchyard at the figne of the Bishops head 1591.

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TO THE
THE RIGHT
HONORABLE AND VER-
tuous Lady Helena Marquesse of
North-hampton.

Haue the rather presumed humbly to offer vnto your Honour the dedication of this little Poëme, for that the noble and vertuous Gentlewoman of whom it is written, was by match neere alied, and in affection greatly deuoted vnto your Ladiship. The occasion why I wrote the same, was aswell the great good fame which I heard of her deceassed, as the particular goodwill which I beare vnto her husband Master Arthur Gorges, a louer of learning and vertue, whose house, as your Ladiship by mariage hath honoured, so doe I find the name of them by many notable records, to be of great antiquitie in this Realme; and such as haue euer borne themselues with honourable reputation to the world, and unspotted loyaltie to their Prince and Countrey: besides

so lineally are they descended from the Howards, as that the Lady Anne Howard, eldest daughter to Iohn Duke of Norfolke, was wife to Sir Edmund, mother to Sir Edward, and grandmother to Sir William and Sir Thomas Gorges Knightes. And therefore I doe assure my selfe, that no due honour done to the white Lyon but will be most gratefull to your Ladiship, whose husband and children do so neerely participate with the bloud of that noble family. So in all dutie I recommende this Pamphlet, and the good acceptance thereof, to your honourable fauour and protection. London this first of Ianuarie. 1591. Your Honours humbly euer.

Daphnaïda.

Ed. Sp.

W Wat euer man he be, whose heauieminde I walk abroad to breath the freshing ayre

With griefe of mournefull great mishap | In open fields, whose flowring pride opprest

opprest,

II

With early frosts, had lost their beautie faire.

There came vnto my minde a troublous thought,
Which dayly dooth my weaker wit possesse,
Ne lets it rest, vntill it forth haue brought 31
Her long borne Infant, fruit of heauinesse,
Which she conceiued hath through meditation
Of this worlds vainnesse and lifes wretched-
nesse,

That yet my soule it deepely doth empassion.

Fit matter for his cares increase would finde:
Let reade the rufull plaint herein exprest
Of one (I weene) the wofulst man aliue;
Euen sad Alcyon, whose empierced brest
Sharpe sorrowe did in thousand peeces riue.
But who so else in pleasure findeth sense,
Or in this wretched life dooth take delight,
Let him be banisht farre away from hence:
Ne let the sacred Sisters here be hight,
Though they of sorrowe heauilie can sing;
So as I muzed on the miserie,
For euen their heauie song would breede delight: In which men liue, and I of many most,
But here no tunes, saue sobs and grones shall ring. Most miserable man; I did espie
In stead of them, and their sweete harmonie,
Where towards me a sory wight did cost,
Let those three fatall Sisters, whose sad hands Clad all in black, that mourning did bewray:
And Jaakob staffe in hand deuoutlie crost, 41
Doo weaue the direfull threds of destinie,
And in their wrath breake off the vitall bands, Like to some Pilgrim come from farre away.
Approach hereto: and let the dreadfull Queene His carelesse locks, vncombed and vnshorne,
Of darkenes deepe come from the Stygian Hong long adowne, and beard all ouer growne,
strands,
20 That well he seemd to be sum wight forlorne;
Downe to the earth his heauie eyes were

And grisly Ghosts to heare this dolefull teene.
In gloomie euening, when the wearie Sun
After his dayes long labour drew to rest,
And sweatie steeds now hauing ouer run
The compast skie, gan water in the west,

throwne

As loathing light: and euer as he went,
He sighed soft, and inly deepe did grone,
As if his heart in peeces would haue rent.

Approaching nigh, his face I vewed nere, 50
And by the semblant of his countenance,
Me seemd I had his person seene elsewhere,
Most like Alcyon seeming at a glaunce;
Alcyon he, the iollie Shepheard swaine,
That wont full merrilie to pipe and daunce,
And fill with pleasance euery wood and plaine.
Yet halfe in doubt because of his disguize,
I softlie sayd Alcyon? There with all
He lookt a side as in disdainefull wise,
Yet stayed not: till I againe did call.
Then turning back he saide with hollow sound,
Who is it, that dooth name me, wofull thrall,
The wretchedst man that treades this day on
ground?

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Then stay Alcyon, gentle shepheard stay,
(Quoth I) till thou haue to my trustie eare
Committed, what thee dooth so ill apay.
Cease foolish man (saide he halfe wrothfully)
To seeke to heare that which cannot be told:
For the huge anguish, which dooth multiplie
My dying paines, no tongue can well vnfold:
Ne doo I care, that any should bemone
My hard mishap, or any weepe that would,
But seeke alone to weepe, and dye alone.
Then be it so (quoth I) that thou art bent
To die alone, vnpitied, vnplained,
Yet ere thou die, it were conuenient
To tell the cause, which thee theretoo con-
strained:

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Least that the world thee dead accuse of guilt, And say, when thou of none shalt be maintained, That thou for secret crime thy blood hast spilt. Who life dooes loath, and longs to bee vnbound From the strong shackles of fraile flesh (quoth he) Nought cares at all, what they that liue on ground

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Deeme the occasion of his death to bee:
Rather desires to be forgotten quight,
Than question made of his calamitie,
For harts deep sorrow hates both life and light.
Yet since so much thou seemst to rue my griefe,
And carest for one that for himselfe cares nought,
(Signe of thy loue, though nought for my reliefe:
For my reliefe exceedeth liuing thought)
I will to thee this heauie case relate.
Then harken well till it to ende be brought,
For neuer didst thou heare more haplesse fate.

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And flowrie bancks with siluer liquor steepe: Nought carde I then for worldly change or chaunce,

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For all my ioy was on my gentle sheepe,
And to my pype to caroll and to daunce.
It there befell, as I the fields did range
Fearelesse and free, a faire young Lionesse,
White as the natiue Rose before the chaunge,
Which Venus blood did in her leaues impresse,
I spied playing on the grassie playne
Her youthfull sports and kindlie wantonnesse,
That did all other Beasts in beawtie staine.
Much was I moued at so goodly sight;
Whose like before mine eye had seldome seene,
And gan to cast, how I her compasse might,
And bring to hand, that yet had neuer beene:
So well I wrought with mildnes and with paine,
That I her caught disporting on the grene,
And brought away fast bound with siluer chaine.
And afterwards I handled her so fayre,
That though by kind shee stout and saluage

were,

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For being borne an auncient Lions haire,
And of the race, that all wild beastes do feare;
Yet I her fram'd and wan so to my bent,
That shee became so meeke and milde of cheare,
As the least lamb in all my flock that went.
For shee in field, where euer I did wend,
Would wend with me, and waite by me all day:
And all the night that I in watch did spend,
If cause requir'd, or els in sleepe, if nay,
Shee would all night by mee or watch, or sleepe;
And euermore when I did sleepe or play,
She of my flock would take full warie keepe.
Safe then and safest were my sillie sheepe,
Ne fear'd the Wolfe, ne fear'd the wildest beast:
All were I drown'd in carelesse quiet deepe:
My louelie Lionesse without beheast
So carefull was for them and for my good,
That when I waked, neither most nor least
I found miscaried or in plaine or wood.
Oft did the Shepeheards, which my hap did
heare,

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And oft their lasses which my luck enuide,
Daylie resort to me from farre and neare,
To see my Lyonesse, whose praises wide
Were spred abroad; and when her worthinesse
Much greater than the rude report they tri'de,
They her did praise, and my good fortune blesse.

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Long thus I ioyed in my happinesse,
And well did hope my ioy would haue no end:
But oh fond man, that in worlds ficklenesse
Reposedst hope, or weenedst her thy frend,
That glories most in mortall miseries,
And daylie doth her changefull counsels bend
To make new matter fit for Tragedies.
For whilest I was thus without dread or dout,
A cruell Satyre with his murdrous dart,
Greedie of mischiefe ranging all about,
Gaue her the fatall wound of deadlie smart:
And reft fro me my sweete companion,
And reft fro me my loue, my life, my hart:
My Lyonesse (ah woe is mee) is gon.

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I

What man henceforth, that breatheth vitallayre,
Will honour heauen, or heauenlie powers adore?
Which so vniustlie doe their iudgments share;
Mongst earthlie wightes, as to afflict so sore
The innocent, as those which do transgresse,
And do not spare the best or fayrest, more
Than worst or fowlest, but doe both oppresse.
If this be right, why did they then create
The world so fayre, sith fairenesse is neglected?
Or whie be they themselues immaculate,
If purest things be not by them respected?
She faire, shee pure, most faire most pure shee
was,

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Yet was by them as thing impure reiected:
Yet shee in purenesse, heauen it selfe did pas.
In purenesse and in all celestiall grace,
That men admire in goodlie womankinde,
Shee did excell, and seem'd of Angels race,
Liuing on earth like Angell new diuinde,
Adorn'd with wisedome and with chastitie:
And all the dowries of a noble mind,.
Which did her beautie much more beautifie.
No age hath bred (since fayre Astræa left
The sinfull world) more vertue in a wight,
And when she parted hence, with her she reft
Great hope; and robd her race of bountie
quight:

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Well may the shepheard lasses now lament,
For dubble losse by her hath on them light;
To loose both her and bounties ornament.
Ne let Elisa royall Shepheardesse
The praises of my parted loue enuy,
For she hath praises in all plenteousnesse
Powr'd vpon her like showers of Castaly
By her own Shepheard, Colin her owne Shepherd,
That her with heauenly hymnes doth deifie,
Of rustick muse full hardly to be betterd. 231
She is the Rose, the glorie of the day,
And mine the Primrose in the lowly shade,
Mine, ah not mine; amisse I mine did say:
Not mine but his, which mine awhile her made:
Mine to be his, with him to liue for ay:
O that so faire a flower so soone should fade,
And through vntimely tempest fall away.
She fell away in her first ages spring,
Whil'st yet her leafe was greene, and fresh her
rinde,

240 And whil'st her braunch faire blossomes foorth did bring,

She fell away against all course of kinde:
For age to dye is right, but youth is wrong;
Shefelaway like fruit blowne downe with winde:
Weepe Shepheard weepe to make my vndersong.

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