The Project Gutenberg eBook of Thomas Stanley: His Original Lyrics, Complete, In Their Collated Readings of 1647, 1651, 1657

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Title: Thomas Stanley: His Original Lyrics, Complete, In Their Collated Readings of 1647, 1651, 1657

Author: Thomas Stanley

Editor: Louise Imogen Guiney

Release date: June 27, 2010 [eBook #32986]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Charlene Taylor, Walt Farrell and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at (This
file was produced from images generously made available
by The Internet Archive/Canadian Libraries)


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Other changes and inconsistencies are noted in the Transcriber’s Notes at the end of the book.


Thy numbers carry weight, yet clear and terse,
And innocent, as becomes the soul of verse.  

                                James Shirley: To his honour’d
                                friend Thomas Stanley, Esquire,
                                upon his Elegant Poems.

Thomas Stanley (1625-1678)

Thomas Stanley:


1647, 1651, 1657.






C. N. G.


 Prefatory Notexi
I.Lyrics printed only in the Edition of 1647:

The Dream




The Picture



II.Lyrics printed only in the Edition of 1651:

The Cure


To the Countess of S[underland?] with The Holy Court


Drawn for Valentine by the L[ady] D[orothy] S[pencer?]

III.  Lyrics printed only in Edition of 1657 [John Gamble’s Ayres and Dialogues] having no Titles:

‘On this swelling bank’


‘Dear, fold me once more’


‘The lazy hours’

IV.Lyrics printed only in Editions of 1647 and 1651:

Love’s Innocence


The Dedication to Love


The Glow-Worm


To Chariessa, desiring her to Burn his Verses


On Mr. Fletcher’s Works


To the Lady D[ormer]


To Mr. W[illiam] Hammond


On Mr. Shirley’s Poems


On Mr. Sherburne’s Translation of Seneca’s Medea, and Vindication of the Author


On Mr. Hall’s Essays


On Sir J[ohn] S[uckling] his Picture and Poems


Answer [to ‘The Union’]

V.Lyrics printed only in Editions of 1647 and 1657 [Gamble]:

The Blush


The Cold Kiss


The Idolater


The Magnet


On a Violet in her Breast


Song: ‘Foolish Lover, go and seek’


The Parting




Expostulation with Love, in Despair


Song: ‘Faith, ’tis not worth thy pains and care’



VI.Lyrics printed in all Original Editions Of Stanley:

The Breath


The Night: a Dialogue


Unalter’d by Sickness


To Celia, Excuse for Wishing her less Fair


Celia, Sleeping or Singing




The Return


Chang’d, yet Constant


To Chariessa, Beholding Herself in a Glass


Song: ‘When I lie burning in thine eye’


Song: ‘Fool! take up thy shaft again’




The Repulse


Song: ‘Celinda, by what potent art’


The Tomb


To Celia, Pleading Want of Merit


The Kiss


The Snowball


Speaking and Kissing


The Deposition


Love’s Heretic


La Belle Confidante


La Belle Ennemie


Love Deposed


The Divorce


The Bracelet


The Farewell


The Exchange: Dialogue


The Exequies


The Silkworm




Song: ‘When, dearest Beauty, thou shalt pay’


Song: ‘I will not trust thy tempting graces’


Song: ‘No, I will sooner trust the wind’


Song: ‘I prithee let my heart alone!’


The Loss


The Self-Cruel


An Answer to a Song, ‘Wert thou much [?] fairer than thou art,’ by Mr. W. M.


The Relapse




      A Sheaf of Translations:

The Revenge [Ronsard]


Claim to Love [Guarini]


The Sick Lover [Guarini]


Time Recover’d [Casone]


Song: ‘I languish in a silent flame’ [De Voiture]


Apollo and Daphne [Marino]


Song: Torment of absence and delay [Montalvan]


A Lady Weeping [Montalvan]


To his Mistress in Absence [Tasso]


The Hasty Kiss [Secundus]


Song: ‘When thou thy pliant arms’ [Secundus]


Song: ‘’Tis no kiss’ [Secundus]


Translations from Anacreon:


  I. The Chase: ‘With a Whip of lilies, Love’


 II. ‘Vex no more thyself and me’


III. The Spring: ‘See, the Spring herself discloses’


IV. The Combat: ‘Now will I a lover be’


 V. ‘On this verdant lotus laid’


E Catalectis Vet[erum] Poet[arum]


Seven Epigrams [Plato]:


   I. Upon one named Aster


  II. Upon Aster’s Death


 III. On Dion, engraved on his Tomb at Syracuse


 IV. On Alexis


  V. On Archaeanassa


 VI. Love Sleeping


VII. On a Seal

 Textual Notes85
 A List of Editions of Thomas Stanley’s Poems and Translations101
 Index to First Lines107



Thomas Stanley’s quiet life began in 1625, the year of the accession of that King whom English poets have loved most. He came, though in the illegitimate line, from the great Stanleys, Earls of Derby. His father, descended from Edward, third Earl, was Sir Thomas Stanley of Leytonstone, Essex, and Cumberlow, Hertfordshire; and his mother was Mary, daughter to Sir William Hammond of St. Alban’s Court, Nonington, near Canterbury. Following the almost unbroken law of the heredity of genius, Stanley derived his chief mental qualities from his mother; and through her he was nearly related to the poets George Sandys, William Hammond, Sir John Marsham the chronologer, Richard Lovelace and his less famous brother; as, through his father, to a fellow-poet perhaps dearer to him than any of these, Sir Edward Sherburne.

His tutor, at home, not at College, was William Fairfax, son of the translator of Tasso. With translation in his own blood, that accomplished and affectionate gentleman succeeded in inspiring his forward charge[xii] with a taste for the same rather thankless game, and with a love of modern foreign classics which he never lost. It was thrown at Stanley, afterwards, that in courting the Muses, he had profited only too well by Fairfax’s aid: but the charge, if ever a serious one at all, was absurdly ill-founded. It may have been based on a wrong reading of that very generous acknowledgement beginning: ‘If we are one, dear friend,’ which is printed in this volume; for the muddled misconstruing mind has existed in every intellectual society. Nothing is plainer than that Stanley, both by right of natural genius and of fastidious scholarship, was more than capable of beating his music out alone.

The boy was sent to Pembroke College, Cambridge, before he was fifteen, and was entered as a gentleman commoner of that University, passing by no means unmarked among a brilliant generation; and there, in 1641 he graduated Master of Arts, being incorporated at Oxford in the same degree. He next set out, like all youths of his rank and age, upon that ‘grand tour’ which was still a perilous business. He returned to England in the full fury of the great Civil contest (his family having emigrated to France, meanwhile), and settled down to work, not forensic, but literary, in the Middle Temple. There he fell to editing Æschylus, turning Anacreon into English, and planning the beginnings of his History of Philosophy. Best of all, he wrote, at leisure and by liking, his charming verses. Contemporaries not a few practised this same notable detachment, building nests, as it were, in the cannon’s mouth. Choosing the contemplative life, Stanley,[xiii] like William Habington and Drummond of Hawthornden, was shut in with his mental activities, while many others whom they knew and whom we know, poor gay sparks of Parnassus, were dimming and blunting themselves on bloody fields. Like Habington and Drummond also in this, he was, though a passive Royalist, Royalist to the core. His Psalterium Carolinum (Eἰkων Βασιλιkή in metre), published three years before the Restoration, proves at least that if he were a non-combatant for the cause he believed in, he was no timid truckler to the power which crushed it. In London he seems to have lived throughout the war, suffering and surviving in the smallpox epidemic. He had married early, and, according to all evidence, most happily. His wife was Dorothy, daughter and co-heiress of Sir James Enyon, Baronet, of Flore, or Flower, Northamptonshire. (It is curious, one may note in passing, that Thomas Stanley in the Oxford University Register is entered as an incorporated Cantabrigian ‘of Flowre, Northants.’ This was in his seventeenth year, when it is highly improbable that any property there could have been made over to him, unless with reference to his betrothal to Dorothy Enyon, then a child.) One of Stanley’s devoted poetic circle joyfully salutes them on the birth of their second son, Sidney,

‘Ere both the parents forty summers told,’

as equal paragons. ‘You two,’ sings Hammond, ‘who are in worthiness so near allied.’ They enjoyed, together, a comfortable fortune, and gave even more[xiv] generously, in proportion, than they had received. All Stanley’s tastes and habits were humanistic. He was the loyal and helpful friend of many English men of letters. To name his familiar associates is to call up a bright and thoughtful pageant, for they include, besides Lovelace and Suckling and Sherburne, the Bromes; James Shirley; John Davies of Kidwelly; John Hall of Durham, better remembered now as the friend of Hobbes than as the prodigy his generation thought him; and the genial Edward Phillips, the nephew of Milton. Though Stanley knew how to protest manfully when the profits of his mental labours were in danger of being withdrawn from him, yet he sought none of the usual awards of life, and never increased his patrimony. Indeed, his relative William Wotton said of him long after, in a Latin notice written for Elogia Gallorum, that Stanley lived engrossed in his studies, and let his private interests run to seed. He kept his learning and his liberty, his charity and peace and good repute; and of his troubles and trials he has left, like the gallant philosopher he was, no record at all. A little brass in the chancel pavement of Clothall Church, near Baldock, witnesses to some of these: for there ‘Thomas et Dorothea, parentes moesti,’ laid two little sons to rest ... ‘sit nomen Dñi benedictum.’ They lost other children, later; but one son and three daughters survived their gentle father, when, after a severe illness, he was called away from a society which bitterly deplored him, in April, 1678. He died in Suffolk Street, London, in the parish of St. Martin-in-the-Fields.

[xv]Stanley was supposed by his contemporaries to have made himself immortal by his History of Philosophy, long a standard book, though hardly an original one. Indeed, they considered him, chiefly on account of it, ‘the glory and admiration of his time’: the phrase is that of a careful critic, Winstanley. The work went into many editions; his prose was used and read, while his verse was talked of, and passed lightly from hand to hand. As in the case of Petrarca, whose fine Latin tomes quickly perished, while his less regarded vernacular Rime rose to shine ‘on the stretched forefinger of all Time,’ so here was a little remainder of lovely English song to embalm an otherwise soon-buried name. Hardly any poet of his poetic day, to be discovered hereafter, can be appraised on a more intimate understanding, or can awaken a more endearing interest. Yet we know that save for one or two of his pieces extant here or there in anthologies; save for a private reprint in 1814 by that tireless scholar and ‘great mouser,’ Sir Egerton Brydges; save for Mr. A. H. Bullen’s valued reproduction of the Anacreontea, in 1893, Thomas Stanley’s name is utterly unknown to the modern world.

We have indeed travelled far from the ideals of the seventeenth century. Perhaps, after all, that is one of our blunders; for every hour, nowadays, we are busy breaking a backward path through the historic underbrush, in order to speak with those singing gentlemen of ‘the Warres,’ whose art and statecraft and religion some of us (who have seen the end of so much else), find incredibly attractive to our own. Their lawless[xvi] vision, like that of children, and the mysterious trick of music in all their speech, are things we love instinctively, and never can regain. Out of their political storm, their hard thought, and high spirits, they can somehow give us rest: and it is chiefly rest which we crave of them. We appeal to each of these post-Elizabethans with the invitatory line of one of them:

‘Charm me asleep with thy delicious numbers!’

The pleasure they can still give is inexhaustible, for unconscious genius like theirs, however narrow, is a deeper well than Goethe’s. Cast aside, and contemned, and left in the darkness long ago, the greater number of these English Alexandrians are as alive as the lamp in Tullia’s tomb; and of these Stanley, as a craftsman, is almost first.

He was a born man of letters; he gave his whole life to meditation, to friendship, and to art; he did his beautiful best, and cared nothing for results; and though literary dynasties have come and gone, his work has sufficient vitality to-day to leap abreast of work which has never been out of the sphere of man’s appreciation, and has deserved all the appreciation which it got. Stanley’s fastidious strength, his wayward but concentrated grace, his spirit of liberty and scorn in writing of love (which was one of the novel characteristic notes of Wither’s generation, and of Robert Jones’s before him); the sunny, fearless mental motion, like that of a bird flying not far, but high, seem to our plodding scientific wits as unnatural as a Sibyllic[xvii] intoxication. He strikes few notes; he recognises his limits and controls his range; but within these, he is for the most part as happy as Herrick, as mellow as Henry King, as free as Carew, and as capable as these were, and as those deeper natures, Crashaw and Vaughan, were not, of a short poem perfect throughout. He is the child of his age, moreover, in that his ingenuity never slumbers, and his speech must ever be concise and knotty. If he sports in the tangles of Neræa’s hair, it is because he likes tangles, and means to add to them. No Carolian poet was ever an idler!

Carew, perhaps, is Stanley’s nearest parallel. The latter shows the very same sort of golden pertness, masked in languid elegance, which goes to unify and heighten Carew’s memorable enchantment, and the same sheer singable felicity of phrase. But, unlike Carew, he has no glorious ungoverned swift-passing raptures; there is in Stanley less fire and less tenderness. Nor has he anything to repent of. His imagination, as John Hall discerningly said of it,

‘Makes soft Ionic turn grave Lydian.’

Except Habington’s, no considerable body of amatory verse in all that century, certainly not even Cowley’s more artificial sequence of 1647, is, on the whole, so free from stain. Stanley’s exemption did not pass unnoticed; and William Fairfax (‘no man fitter!’) is careful to instruct us that Doris, Celinda, and Chariessa were ‘various rays’ of ‘one orient sun,’ and further, that ‘no coy ambitious names may here imagine earthly flames,’ because the poet’s professional and deliberate[xviii] homage was really paid to inward beauty, and never to ‘roses of the cheek’ alone. Here we run up against a sweet and famous moral of Carew’s, which not Carew, but Stanley, bears out as the better symbolist of the two. Our poet does not appear to have contributed towards the religious literature of a day when the torrent of intense life in human hearts bred so much heaven-mounting spray, as well as so much necessary scum and refuse. But his was a temperament so religious that one almost expects to find somewhere a manuscript volume of ‘pious thoughts,’ the shy fruit of Stanley’s Christian ‘retirements’ at home. It will be noticed that there is one sad devotional poem in this book, ‘The lazy hours move slow’; and as it appears only in John Gamble’s book, 1657, it may fairly be inferred that it was written later than the other lyrics. In 1657 Stanley was two-and-thirty, and his singing-time, so far as we know, was over. He had discharged it well. He fails where any true artist may ever be expected to fail, in verses occasional and complimentary. But, to balance this, he is often exceptionally happy when translating.

His portrait, in middle age, by Faithorne after Lely, commends him to us all as quite worthy of the affection and applause which surrounded him from his youth, and never spoiled him. Brown-haired, hazel-eyed, fresh-cheeked, serene rather than gay, he seems the very incarnation of the ideal for which many others, less fortunate, hungered in that vexed England: the man ‘innocent and quiet,’ whose ‘mind to him a[xix] kingdom is,’ whose ‘treasure is in Minerva’s tower,’ and ‘who in the region of himself remains.’ Through the Civil struggle, the Commonwealth, the Restoration, he had followed a way of peace, without blame, and he is almost the only poet of the stormy time who is absolutely unaffected by it. He, at least, need not be discounted as a pathetic broken crystal: he can be judged on his own little plot of ground, without allowances, and by our strictest modern standards. His light bright best, his viridaria, have borne victoriously the lava-drift of nearly three centuries. An amorist of even temper and of malice prepense, a railer with a sound heart, an untyrannic master of his Muse, Stanley sings low to his small jocund lyre, and need not be too curiously questioned about his sincerity. How can it matter? He gives delight; he deserves the bays.

This little book is the first complete reprint of Stanley ever published: it is his original and inclusive output. The text is a new text, inasmuch as it represents the Editor’s choice of readings, among many variants; but variants are noted throughout, and by their number and interest tell their own tale of Stanley’s exacting and sure taste. A few translated lyrics are gathered into an Appendix. The title-pages of his few volumes will be found cited in the accompanying List of Editions.

But the only issues taken into account here, for textual purposes, are the three of 1647, 1651, and 1657, of which last a word needs to be said. (The edition of 1652 is an exact copy of 1651, therefore negligible in the[xx] preparation of this book.) The often-overlooked Ayres and Dialogues, Gamble’s and Stanley’s, appeared first privately, in 1656, then in 1657. The earlier issue is rare; it figures in the British Museum Music Catalogues, but not in those of the Bodleian Library. There is at Oxford, however, a copy of the later edition, and on this the present editor bases the readings common both to 1656 and 1657. As a general thing these readings of the Gamble Stanley are particularly satisfying, and besides having all the advantages in point of time, may have profited by the author’s careful revision. John Gamble’s music-book is devoted wholly to Stanley’s poems. It has a notably affectionate and, as it happens, a not-much-too-obsequious Preface, in which Gamble well says that he felt it ‘a bold Undertaking to compose words which are so pure Harmonie in themselves, into any other Musick’; yet that he longed to put it to the test, ‘how neer a whole life spent in the study of Musical Compositions could imitate the flowing and naturall Graces which you have created by your Fancie.’ Gamble wrote out no accompaniments to his sweet and spirited settings, nor did he leave Stanley’s titles prefixed to the numbered songs, a good proportion of which are translations, though not indicated as such.

As to the present arrangement, for simplicity’s sake, it is nothing if not frankly chronological. It is divided into six sections; the sixth contains those poems which must have appeared to Stanley to be his best, as they were included by him in every successive edition of his work. Form and method, therefore,[xxi] are both, after a fashion, novel, but not without their good inherent justification, nor without fullest obedience of spirit to the author’s individual genius and its posthumous dues. The spelling has been modernised, and particular pains have been taken with the punctuation. This reprint is a deferent attempt to set forth Thomas Stanley as a little latter-day classic, in his old rich singing-coat, made strong and whole by means of coloured strands of his own weaving.

L. I. G.

Oxford, August 31, 1905.

The Editor’s best acknowledgements are due to Mr. W. Bailey Kempling, for his painstaking copy, from the 1651 edition of Stanley in the British Museum, of a large number of the poems collated in this book.




The Dream.

That I might ever dream thus! that some power
To my eternal sleep would join this hour!
So, willingly deceiv’d, I might possess
In seeming joys a real happiness.
Haste not away: O do not dissipate5
A pleasure thou so lately didst create!
Stay, welcome Sleep; be ever here confin’d:
Or if thou wilt away, leave her behind.


No, no, poor blasted Hope!
Since I (with thee) have lost the scope
Of all my joys, I will no more
Vainly implore
[2]The unrelenting Destinies:5
He that can equally sustain
The strong assaults of joy and pain,
May safely laugh at their decrees.
Despair, to thee I bow,
Whose constancy disdains t’allow10
Those childish passions that destroy
Our fickle joy;
How cruel Fates so e’er appear,
Their harmless anger I despise,
And fix’d, can neither fall nor rise,15
Thrown below hope, but rais’d ’bove fear.

The Picture.

Thou that both feel’st and dost admire
The flames shot from a painted fire,
Know Celia’s image thou dost see:
Not to herself more like is she.
He that should both together view5
Would judge both pictures, or both true.
But thus they differ: the best part
Of Nature this is; that of Art.


Whence took the diamond worth? the borrow’d rays
That crystal wears, whence had they first their praise?
Why should rude feet contemn the snow’s chaste white,
Which from the sun receives a sparkling light,
[3]Brighter than diamonds far, and by its birth5
Decks the green garment of the richer earth?
Rivers than crystal clearer, when to ice
Congeal’d, why do weak judgements so despise?
Which, melting, show that to impartial sight
Weeping than smiling crystal is more bright.10
But Fancy those first priz’d, and these did scorn,
Taking their praise the other to adorn.
Thus blind is human sight: opinion gave
To their esteem a birth, to theirs a grave;
Nor can our judgements with these clouds dispense,15
Since reason sees but with the eyes of sense.



The Cure.


What busy cares, too timely born,
Young swain! disturb thy sleep?
Thy early sighs awake the morn,
Thy tears teach her to weep.


Sorrows, fair nymph, are full alone,5
Nor counsel can endure.


Yet thine disclose; for, until known,
Sickness admits no cure.


My griefs are such as but to hear
Would poison all thy joys;10
The pity which thou seem’st to bear
My health, thine own destroys.


How can diseased minds infect?
Say what thy grief doth move!


Call up thy virtue to protect15
Thy heart, and know—’twas love.


Fond swain!


By which I have been long
Destin’d to meet with hate.


Fie! shepherd, fie! thou dost love wrong,
To call thy crime thy fate.20


Alas! what cunning could decline,
What force can love repel?


Yet there’s a way to unconfine
Thy heart.


For pity, tell.


Choose one whose love may be assur’d25
By thine: who ever knew
Inveterate diseases cur’d
But by receiving new?


All will, like her, my soul perplex.


Yet try.


Oh, could there be30
But any softness in that sex,
I’d wish it were in thee!


Thy prayer is heard: learn now t’esteem
The kindness she hath shown,
Who, thy lost freedom to redeem,35
Hath forfeited her own.

To the Countess of S[underland?] with the Holy Court.[1:1]

Since every place you bless, the name
This book assumes may justlier claim.
(What more a court than where you shine?
And where your soul, what more divine?)
[7]You may perhaps doubt at first sight5
That it usurps upon your right;
And praising virtues that belong
To you, in others, doth you wrong.
No, ’tis yourself you read, in all
Perfections earlier ages call10
Their own; all glories they e’er knew
Were but faint prophecies of you.
You then have here sole interest, whom ’tis meant
As well to entertain, as represent.

Drawn For Valentine by the L[ady] D[orothy] S[pencer?].[2:1]

Though ’gainst me Love and Destiny conspire,
Though I must waste in an unpitied fire,
By the same deity, severe as fair,
Commanded adoration and despair;
Though I am mark’d for sacrifice, to tell5
The growing age what dangerous glories dwell
In this bright dawn, who, when she spreads her rays,
Will challenge every heart, and every praise;
Yet she who to all hope forbids my claim,
By Fortune’s taught indulgence to my flame,10
Great Queen of Chance! unjustly we exclude
Thy power an interest in beatitude,
Who with mysterious judgement dost dispense
The bounties of unerring Providence;
Whilst we, to whom the causes are unknown,15
Would style that blindness thine, which is our own.
[8]As kind, in justice to thyself, as me,
Thou hast redeem’d thy name and votary:
Nor will I prize this less for being thine,
Nor longer at my destiny repine.20
Counsel and choice are things below thy state:
Fortune relieves the cruelties of Fate.



On this Swelling Bank.

On this swelling bank, once proud
Of its burden, Doris lay:
Here she smil’d, and did uncloud
Those bright suns eclipse the day;
Here we sat, and with kind art5
She about me twin’d her arms,
Clasp’d in hers my hand and heart,
Fetter’d in those pleasing charms.
Here my love and joys she crown’d,
Whilst the hours stood still before me,10
With a killing glance did wound,
And a melting kiss restore me.
On the down of either breast,
Whilst with joy my soul retir’d,
My reclining head did rest,15
Till her lips new life inspir’d.
Thus, renewing of these sights
Doth with grief and pleasure fill me,
And the thought of these delights
Both at once revive and kill me!20

Dear, fold me once more.[10]

Dear, fold me once more in thine arms!
And let me know
Before I go
There is no bliss but in those charms.
By thy fair self I swear5
That here, and only here,
I would for ever, ever stay:
But cruel Fate calls me away.
How swiftly the light minutes slide!
The hours that haste10
Away thus fast
By envious flight my stay do chide.
Yet, Dear, since I must go,
By this last kiss I vow,
By all that sweetness which dwells with thee,[3:1]15
Time shall move slow, till next I see thee.

The Lazy Hours.

The lazy hours move slow,
The minutes stay;
Old Time with leaden feet doth go,
And his light wings hath cast away.
The slow-pac’d spheres above5
Have sure releas’d
Their guardians, and without help move,
Whilst that the very angels rest.
The number’d sands that slide
Through this small glass,10
And into minutes Time divide,
Too slow each other do displace;
The tedious wheels of light
No faster chime,
Than that dull shade which waits on night:15
For Expectation outruns Time.
How long, Lord, must I stay?
How long dwell here?
O free me from this loathed clay!
Let me no more these fetters wear!20
With far more joy
Shall I resign my breath,
For, to my griev’d soul, not to die
Is every minute a new death.



Love’s Innocence.[4:1]

See how this ivy strives to twine[4:2]
Her wanton arms about the vine,
And her coy lover thus restrains,
Entangled in her amorous chains;
See how these neighb’ring palms do bend5
Their heads, and mutual murmurs send,
As whispering with a jealous fear[4:3]
Their loves into each other’s ear.
Then blush not such a flame to own
As, like thyself, no crime hath known;10
Led by these harmless guides, we may
Embrace and kiss as well as they.

And like those blessed souls above,
Whose life is harmony and love,
Let us our mutual thoughts betray,15
And in our wills our minds display.
This silent speech is swifter far
Than the ears’ lazy species are;
And the expression it affords
(As our desires,) ’bove reach of words.20
[13]Thus we, my Dear, of these may learn[4:5]
A passion others not discern;
Nor can it shame or blushes move,
Like plants to live, like angels love:
Since all excuse with equal innocence25
What above reason is, or beneath sense.

The Dedication.[5:1]

To Love.

Thou whose sole name all passions doth comprise:
Youngest and eldest of the Deities,
Born without parents, whose unbounded reign
Moves the firm earth, fixeth the floating main,
Inverts the course of heaven, and from the deep5
Awakes those souls that in dark Lethe sleep,
By thy mysterious chains seeking t’unite,
Once more, the long-since-torn hermaphrodite!
He who thy willing prisoner long was vow’d,
And uncompell’d beneath thy sceptre bow’d,10
Returns at last in thy soft fetters bound,
With victory, though not with freedom, crown’d:
And, (of his dangers past a grateful sign,)
Suspends this tablet at thy numerous shrine.

The Glow-Worm.

Stay, fairest Chariessa, stay and mark
This animated gem,[6:1] whose fainter spark
Of fading light, its birth had from the dark:
A star thought by the erring[6:2] passenger
Which falling from its native orb, dropped here,5
And makes the earth, its centre, now its sphere.
Should many of these sparks together be,
He that the unknown light far off should see
Would think it a terrestrial galaxy.
Take ’t up, fair Saint; see how it mocks thy fright;10
The paler flame doth not yield heat, though light,
Which thus deceives[6:3] thy reason, through thy sight.
But see how quickly it, ta’en up, doth fade,
(To shine in darkness only being made),
By th’ brightness of thy light turn’d to a shade,15
And burnt to ashes by thy flaming eyes!
On the chaste altar of thy hand it dies,
As to thy greater light a sacrifice.

To Chariessa,[7:1]

Desiring her to Burn his Verses.

These papers, Chariessa, let thy breath
Condemn, thy hand unto the flames bequeath;
’Tis fit who gave them life, should give them death.
And whilst[7:2] in curled flames to heaven they rise,
Each trembling sheet shall, as it upwards flies,5
Present itself to thee a sacrifice.
Then when above[7:3] its native orb it came,
And reach’d the lesser lights o’ th’ sky, this flame,
Contracted to a star, should wear thy name,
Or falling down on earth from its bright sphere,10
Shall in a diamond’s shape its lustre bear,
And trouble (as it did before) thine ear.
But thou wilt cruel even in mercy be,
Unequal in thy justice, who dost free
Things without sense from flames, and yet not me!15

On Mr. Fletcher’s Works [1647].[8:1]

Fletcher, whose fame no age can ever waste,
(Envy of ours, and glory of the last,)
Is now alive again; and with his name
His sacred ashes wak’d into a flame
Such as before could[8:2] by a secret charm5
The wildest heart subdue, the coldest warm,
And lend the ladies’ eyes a power more bright,
Dispensing thus, to either, heat and light.
He to a sympathy those souls betray’d
Whom love or beauty never could persuade;10
And in each mov’d spectator did[8:3] beget
A real passion by a counterfeit.
When first Bellario bled, what lady there
Did not for every drop let fall a tear?
And when Aspasia wept, not any eye15
But seem’d to wear the same sad livery;
[16]By him inspir’d, the feign’d Lucina drew
More streams of melting sorrow than the true;
But then The Scornful Lady did[8:4] beguile
Their easy griefs, and teach them all to smile.20
Thus he affections could or raise or lay;
Love, grief, and mirth thus did his charms obey:
He Nature taught her passions to out-do,
How to refine the old, and create new;
Which such a happy likeness seem’d to bear,25
As if that Nature Art, Art Nature were.
Yet all had nothing been, obscurely kept
In the same urn wherein his dust hath slept;
Nor had he risen[8:5] the Delphic wreath to claim,
Had with[8:6] the dying scene expir’d his name.30
O the indulgent justice of this age,
To grant the press what it denies the stage!
Despair our joy hath doubled: he is come
Twice welcome by this post liminium.
His loss preserv’d him; they that silenc’d wit35
Are now the authors to eternize it.
Thus poets are in spite of Fate reviv’d,
And plays, by intermission, longer liv’d.

To the Lady D[ormer].[9:1]

Madam! the blushes I betray,
When at your feet I humbly lay
These papers, beg you would excuse
Th’ obedience of a bashful Muse,
Who, bowing to your strict command,5
Trusts her own errors to your hand,
[17]Hasty abortives, which, laid by,
She meant, ere they were born, should die:
But since the soft power of your breath
Hath call’d them back again from death,10
To your sharp judgement now made known,
She dares for hers no longer own;
The worst she must not: these resign’d
She hath to th’ fire; and where you find
Those your kind charity admir’d,15
She writ but what your eyes inspir’d.

To Mr. W[illiam] Hammond.

Thou best of Friendship, Knowledge, and of Art!
The charm of whose lov’d name preserves my heart
From female vanities, (thy name, which there
Till time dissolves the fabric, I must wear!)
Forgive a crime which long my soul oppress’d,5
And crept by chance in my unwary breast,
So great, as for thy pardon were unfit,
And to forgive were worse than to commit,
But that the fault and pain were so much one,
The very act did expiate what was done.10
I, who so often sported with the flame,
Play’d with the Boy, and laugh’d at both as tame,
Betray’d by idleness and beauty, fell
At last in love, love both the sin and hell:
No punishment great as my fault esteem’d,15
But to be that which I so long had seem’d.
Behold me such: a face, a voice, a lute;
The sentence in a minute execute.
[18]I yield, recant; the faith which I before
Deny’d, profess; the power I scorn’d, implore.20
Alas, in vain! no prayers, no vows can bow
Her stubborn heart, who neither will allow.
But see how strangely what was meant no less
Than torment, prov’d my greatest happiness;
Delay, that should have sharpen’d, starv’d Desire,25
And Cruelty not fann’d, but quench’d my fire.
Love bound me; now, by kind Disdain set free,
I can despise that Love as well as she.
That sin to friendship I away have thrown!
My heart thou may’st without a rival own,[10:1]30
While such as willingly themselves beguile,
And sell away their freedoms for a smile,
Blush to confess our joys as far above
Their hopes, as friendship’s longer-liv’d than love.

On Mr. Shirley’s Poems [1646].[11:1]

When, dearest Friend, thy verse doth re-inspire
Love’s pale decaying torch with brighter fire,
Whilst everywhere thou dost dilate thy flame,
And to the world spread thy Odelia’s name,
The justice of all ages must remit5
To her the prize of beauty, thee of wit.
Then, like some skilful artist, that to wonder[11:2]
Framing some[11:3] piece, displeas’d, takes it asunder,
Thou Beauty dost depose, her charms deny,
And all the mystic chains of Love untie.10
[19]Thus thy diviner Muse a power ’bove Fate
May boast, that can both make and uncreate.
Next, thou call’st back to life that love-sick boy,
To the kind-hearted nymphs less fair than coy,
Who, by reflex beams burnt with vain desire,15
Did, phœnix-like, in his own flames expire;
But should he view his shadow drawn by thee,
He with himself once more in love would be.
Echo, (who though she words[11:4] pursue, her haste
Can only overtake and stop the last,)20
Shall her first speech and human voice[11:5] obtain,
To sing thy softer numbers o’er again.
Thus, into dying poetry, thy Muse
Doth full perfection and new life infuse.
Each line deserves a laurel, and thy praise25
Asks not a garland, but a grove of bays;
Nor can ours raise thy lasting trophies higher,
Who only reach at merit to admire.
But I must chide thee, friend: how canst thou be
A patron, yet a foe to Poesy?[11:6]30
For while thou dost this age to verse restore,
Thou dost deprive the next of owning more;
} [11:7]

And hast so far all future times surpass’d,[11:8]
That none dare write: thus, being first and last,
All their abortive Muses will suppress,35
And Poetry, by this increase, grow less.

[20]On Mr. Sherburne’s Translation of Seneca’s Medea, and Vindication of the Author [1647-8].[12:1]

That wise philosopher who had design’d
To [th’] life the various passions of the mind,
Did wrong’d Medea’s jealousy prefer
To entertain the Roman theatre;
Both to instruct the soul, and please the sight,5
At once begetting horror and delight.
This cruelty thou dost once more express
Though in a strange, no less becoming dress;
And her revenge hast robb’d of half its pride,
To see itself thus by itself outvied,10
That boldest ages past may say, our times
Can speak, as well as act, their highest crimes.
Nor was’t enough to do his scene this right,
But what thou gav’st to us, with equal light
Thou wouldst bestow on him, nor wert more just15
Unto the author’s work, than to his dust.
Thou dost make good his title, aid his claim,
Both vindicate his poem and his name,
So shar’st a double wreath; for all that we
Unto the poet[12:2] owe, he owes to thee.20
Though change of tongues stol’n praise to some afford,
Thy version hath not borrow’d, but restor’d.

[21]On Mr. Hall’s Essays [Horae Vacivae, 1646].[13:1]

Wits that matur’d by time have courted praise,
Shall see their works outdone in these essays,
And blush to know thy earlier years display
A dawning clearer than their brightest day.[13:2]
Yet I’ll not praise thee, for thou hast outgrown5
The reach of all men’s praises but thine own.
Encomiums to their objects are exact:
To praise, and not at full, is to detract.
And with most justice are the best forgot;
For praise is bounded when the theme is not:10
Since mine is thus confin’d, and far below
Thy merit, I forbear it, nor will show
How poor the autumnal pride of some appears,[13:3]
To the ripe fruit thy vernal season bears!
Yet though I mean no praise, I come t’invite15
Thy forward aims still to advance their flight.
Rise higher yet; what though thy spreading wreath
Lessen, to their dull sight who stay beneath?
To thy full learning how can all allow
Just praise, unless that all were learn’d as thou?20
Go on, in spite of such low souls, and may
Thy growing worth know age, though not decay,
Till thou pay back thy theft, and live to climb
As many years as thou hast snatch’d from Time.

On Sir J[ohn] S[uckling] his Picture and Poems [1646].[14:1][22]

Suckling, whose numbers could invite
Alike to wonder and delight,
And with new spirit did inspire
The Thespian scene, and Delphic lyre,
Is thus express’d in either part,5
Above the humble reach of Art.
Drawn by the pencil, here you find
His form; by his own pen, his mind.

Answer [to “The Union,” Poem addressed to Stanley by his Friend and Tutor, William Fairfax].[15:1]

If we are one, dear Friend! why shouldst thou be
At once unequal to thyself and me?
By thy release thou swell’st my debt the more,
And dost but rob thyself to make me poor.
What part can I have in thy luminous cone,5
What flame, since my love’s thine, can call my own,
(The palest star is less the son of night,)
Who but thy borrow’d know no native light?[15:2]
Was’t not enough thou freely didst bestow
The Muse, but thou must[15:3] give the laurel too,10
And twice my aims by thy assistance raise,
Conferring first the merit, then the praise?
But I should do thee greater injury,
Did I believe this praise were meant to me,
[23]Or thought, though thou hast worth enough to spare15
T’enrich another soul, that mine should share.
Thy Muse, seeming to lend, calls home her fame,
And her due wreath doth, in renouncing, claim.



The Blush.

So fair Aurora doth herself discover
(Asham’d o’ th’ aged bed of her cold lover,)
In modest blushes, whilst the treacherous light
Betrays her early shame to the world’s sight.
Such a bright colour doth the morning rose5
Diffuse, when she her soft self doth disclose
Half drown’d in dew, whilst on each leaf a tear
Of night doth like a dissolv’d pearl appear;
Yet ’twere in vain a colour out to seek
To parallel my Chariessa’s cheek;10
Less are compar’d[16:1] with greater, and these seem
To blush like her, not she to blush like them.
But whence, fair soul, this passion? what pretence
Had guilt to stain thy spotless innocence?
Those only this feel who have guilty been,15
Not any blushes know, but who know[16:2] sin.
Then blush no more; but let thy chaster flame,
That knows no cause, know no effects of shame.

The Cold Kiss.[25]

Such icy kisses, anchorites that live
Secluded from the world, to dead skulls give;
And those[17:1] cold maids on whom Love never spent
His flame, nor know what by desire is meant,
To their expiring fathers such bequeath,5
Snatching their fleeting spirits in that breath:
The timorous priest doth with such fear and nice
Devotion touch the Holy Sacrifice.
Fie, Chariessa! whence so chang’d of late,
As to become in love a reprobate?10
Quit, quit this dulness, Fairest, and make known
A flame unto me equal with mine[17:2] own.
Shake off this frost, for shame, that dwells upon
Thy lips; or if it will not so be gone,
Let’s once more join our lips,[17:3] and thou shalt see15
That by the flame of mine ’twill melted be.

The Idolater.

Think not, pale lover, he who dies
Burnt in the flames of Celia’s eyes,
Is unto Love a sacrifice;
Or, by the merit of this pain,
Thou shalt the crown of martyrs gain!5
Those hopes are, as thy passion, vain.
[26]For when, by death, from[18:1] these flames free,
To greater thou condemn’d shalt be,
And punish’d for idolatry,
Since thou, Love’s votary before,10
(Whilst she[18:2] was kind,) dost him no more,
But, in his shrine, Disdain adore.
Nor will this fire the gods prepare
To punish scorn, that cruel Fair,
Though now from flames exempted, spare;15
But as together both shall die,
Both burnt alike in flames shall lie,
She in thy heart,[18:3] thou in her eye.

The Magnet.

Ask the empress of the night
How the Hand which guides her sphere,
Constant in unconstant light,
Taught the waves her yoke to bear,
And did thus by loving force5
Curb or tame the rude sea’s course.
Ask the female palm how she
First did woo her husband’s love;
And the magnet, ask how he[19:1]
Doth th’ obsequious iron move;10
Waters, plants, and stones know this:
That they love; not what Love is.
[27]Be not thou[19:2] less kind than these,
Or from Love exempt alone!
Let us twine like amorous trees,15
And like rivers melt in one.
Or, if thou more cruel prove,
Learn of steel and stones to love.

On a Violet in her Breast.

See how this violet, which before
Hung sullenly her drooping head,
As angry at the ground that bore
The purple treasure which she spread,
Doth smilingly erected grow,5
Transplanted to those hills of snow.
And whilst the pillows of thy breast
Do her reclining head sustain,
She swells with pride to be so blest,
And doth all other flowers disdain;10
Yet weeps that dew which kissed her last,
To see her odours so surpass’d.
Poor flower! how far deceiv’d thou wert,
To think the riches of the morn
Or all the sweets she can impart.15
Could these or sweeten or adorn,
Since thou from them dost borrow scent,
And they to thee lend ornament!


Foolish Lover, go and seek
For the damask of the rose,
And the lilies white dispose
To adorn thy mistress’ cheek;
Steal some star out of the sky,5
Rob the phœnix, and the east
Of her wealthy sweets divest,
To enrich her breath or eye!
We thy borrow’d pride despise:
For this wine to which we are10
Votaries, is richer far
Than her cheek, or breath, or eyes.
And should that coy fair one view
These diviner beauties, she
In this flame would rival thee,15
And be taught to love thee too.
Come, then, break thy wanton chain,
That when this brisk wine hath spread
On thy paler cheek a red,
Thou, like us, may’st Love disdain.20
Love, thy power must yield to wine!
And whilst thus ourselves we arm,
Boldly we defy thy charm:
For these flames extinguish[20:1] thine.

The Parting.[29]

I go, dear Saint, away,
Snatch’d from thy arms
By far less pleasing charms,
Than those I did[21:1] obey;
But if hereafter thou shalt know5
That grief hath kill’d me, come,[21:2]
And on my tomb
Drop, drop a tear or two;
Break with thy sighs the silence of my sleep,
And I shall smile in death to see thee weep.10
Thy tears may have the power
To reinspire
My ashes with new fire,
Or change me to some flower,
Which, planted ’twixt thy breasts, shall grow:15
Veil’d in this shape, I will
Dwell with thee still,
Court, kiss, enjoy thee too:
Securely we’ll contemn[21:3] all envious force,
And thus united be by death’s divorce.20


When deceitful lovers lay
At thy feet their suppliant hearts,
And their snares spread to betray
Thy best treasure[22:1] with their arts,
Credit not their flatt’ring vows:5
Love such perjury allows.
[30]When they with the[22:2] choicest wealth
Nature boasts of, have possess’d thee;
When with flowers (their verses’ stealth),
Stars, or jewels they invest thee,[22:3]10
Trust not to their borrow’d store:
’Tis but lent to make thee poor.
When with poems[22:4] they invade thee,
Sing thy praises or disdain;
When they weep, and would persuade thee15
That their flames beget that rain;
Let thy breast no baits let in:
Mercy’s only here a sin!
Let no tears or offerings move thee,
All those cunning charms avoid;20
For that wealth for which they love thee,
They would slight if once enjoy’d.
Guard thy unrelenting mind!
None are cruel but the kind.

Expostulation with Love, in Despair.

Love! what tyrannic laws must they obey
Who bow beneath thy uncontrolled sway!
Or how unjust will that harsh empire prove
Forbids to hope and yet commands to love!

Must all are to thy hell condemn’d sustain5
A double torture of despair and pain?
[31]Is’t not enough vainly to hope and woo,
That thou shouldst thus deny that vain hope too?
It were some joy,[23:2] Ixion-like, to fold
The empty air, or feed on thoughts as cold;[23:3]10
But if thou to my passion this deny,
Thou may’st be starv’d to death as well as I;
For how can thy pale sickly flame burn clear
When death and cold despair inhabit here?[23:4]
Then let thy dim heat warm, or else expire;[23:5]15
Dissolve this frost, or let that quench the[23:6] fire.
Thus let me not desire, or else possess!
Neither, or both, are equal happiness.[23:7]


Faith, ’tis not worth thy pains and care
To seek t’ensnare
A heart so poor as mine:[24:1]
Some fools there be
Hate liberty,5
Who[m] with more ease thou may’st confine.
Alas! when with much charge thou hast
Brought it at last
Beneath thy power to bow,
It will adore10
Some twenty more,
And that, perhaps, you’d[24:2] not allow.
[32]No, Chloris, I no more will prove
The curse of love,
And now can boast a heart15
Hath learn’d of thee
And cozen’d women of their art.


Chide, chide no more away
The fleeting daughters of the day,
Nor with impatient thoughts outrun
The lazy sun,
Nor[25:1] think the hours do move too slow;5
Delay is kind,
And we too soon shall find
That which we seek, yet fear to know.
The mystic dark decrees
Unfold not of the Destinies,10
Nor boldly seek to antedate
The laws of Fate;
Thy anxious search awhile forbear,
Suppress thy haste,
And know that Time at last15
Will crown thy hope, or fix thy fear.



The Breath.

Favonius, the milder breath o’ th’ Spring,
When proudly bearing on his softer wing
Rich odours, which from the Panchean groves
He steals, as by the phœnix-pyre he moves,
Profusely doth his sweeter theft dispense5
To the next rose’s blushing innocence;
But from the grateful flower, a richer scent
He doth receive[26:1] than he unto it lent.
Then, laden with his odour’s richest store,
He to thy breath hastes, to which these are poor;10
Which, whilst the amorous wind[26:2] to steal essays,
He like a wanton lover ’bout thee plays,
And sometimes cooling thy soft cheek doth lie,
And sometimes burning at thy flaming eye:
Drawn in at last by that breath we implore,15
He now[26:3] returns far sweeter than before,
And rich by being robb’d, in thee he finds
The burning sweets of pyres, the cool of winds.

The Night: A Dialogue.[34]

Chariessa.[27:1]   What if Night
Should betray us, and reveal
To the light
All the pleasures that we steal?
Philocharis.         Fairest! we5
Safely may this fear despise:
How can she
See our actions, who wants eyes?
Chariessa.           Each dim star,
And the clearer lights, we know,10
Night’s eyes are:
They were blind that thought her so!
Philocharis.         Those pale fires
Only burn to yield a light
T’ our desires;15
And, though blind, to give us sight.
Chariessa.           By this shade
That surrounds us, might our flame
Be betray’d!
And the day disclose its name.20
Philocharis.         Dearest Fair!
These dark witnesses, we find,
Silent are:
Night is dumb, as well as blind.
Then whilst these black shades conceal us,25
We will scorn
Th’ envious morn,
And the sun that would reveal us.
Our flames shall thus their mutual light betray,
And night, with these joys crown’d, outshine the day.30

Unalter’d by Sickness.

Pale envious Sickness, hence! no more
Possess her breast, too cold before.
In vain, alas, thou dost invade
A beauty that can never fade.

Could all thy malice but impair5
One o’ th’ sweets which crown her fair;[28:2]
Or steal the spirits from her eye;
Or kiss into a paler dye
The blooming[28:3] roses of her cheek;
Our suffering[28:4] hopes might justly seek10
Redress from thee, and thou mightst save
Thousands of lovers from the grave.
But such assaults are vain, for she
Is too divine to stoop to thee,
Blest with a form as much too high15
For any change, as[28:5] Destiny,
Which no attempt can violate:
For what’s her beauty is our fate.

To Celia.[36]


Why thy passion should it move
That I wished thy beauty less?
Fools desire what is above
Power of nature to express;
And to wish it had been more5
Had been to outwish her store.
If the flames within thine eye
Did not too great heat inspire,
Men might languish, yet not die,
At thy less ungentle fire,10
} [29:2]

And might on thy weaker light
Gaze, and yet not lose their sight.
Nor wouldst thou less fair appear,
For detraction adds to thee;
If some parts less beauteous were,15
Others would much fairer be;
Nor can any part we know
Best be styl’d, when all are so.
Thus this great excess of light,
Which now dazzles our weak eyes,20
Would, eclips’d, appear more bright;
And the only way to rise,
Or to be more fair, for[29:3] thee,
Celia! is less fair to be.

Celia, Sleeping or Singing.[37][30:1]

Roses, in breathing forth their scent,
Or stars their borrowed ornament;
Nymphs in the watery sphere that move,
Or angels in their orbs above;
The winged chariot of the light,5
Or the slow silent wheels of night;
The shade which from the swifter sun
Doth in a circular motion run,
Or souls that their eternal rest do keep,
Make far more[30:2] noise than Celia’s breath in sleep.10
But if the angel which inspires
This subtle frame[30:3] with active fires,
Should mould this[30:4] breath to words, and those
Into a harmony dispose,
The music of this heavenly sphere15
Would steal each soul out at the ear,
And into plants and stones infuse
A life that cherubim[30:5] would choose,
And with new powers[30:6] invert the laws of fate:
Kill those that live, and dead things animate.20


Beauty, thy harsh imperious chains
As a scorn’d weight, I here untie,
Since thy proud empire those disdains
Of reason or philosophy,
[38]That would[31:2] within tyrannic laws5
Confine the power of each free cause.
Forc’d by the potent[31:3] influence
Of thy disdain, I back return:
Thus with those flames I do dispense
Which, though they would not light, did burn,10
And rather will through cold expire,
Than languish at[31:4] a frozen fire.
But whilst I the insulting pride
Of thy vain beauty do despise,
Who gladly wouldst be deified15
By making me thy sacrifice,
May Love thy heart which to his charm
Approach’d, seem’d cold, at distance warm!

The Return.

Beauty, whose soft magnetic chains
Nor time nor absence can untie,[32:1]
Thy power the narrow bound[32:2] disdains
Of Nature or Philosophy;
Thou[32:3] canst by unconfined laws5
A motion, though at distance, cause.
Drawn by the powerful[32:4] influence
Of thy bright eyes, I back return;
And since I nowhere can dispense
With flames that[32:5] do in absence burn,10
[39]I rather choose ’twixt[32:6] them t’expire,
Than languish by a hidden fire.
But if thou th’[32:7] insulting pride
Of vulgar beauties dost despise,
Who, by vain triumphs deified,15
Their votaries do sacrifice,
Then let those flames, whose magic charm
At distance scorch’d, approach’d, but warm.

Chang’d, Yet Constant.

Wrong me no more
In thy complaint,
Blam’d for inconstancy:
I vow’d t’ adore
The fairest Saint,5
Nor chang’d whilst thou wert she:
But if another thee outshine,
Th’ inconstancy is only thine!
To be by such
Blind fools admir’d10
Gives thee but small esteem,
By whom as much
Thou’dst be desir’d,
Didst thou less beauteous seem.
Sure, why they love they know not well,15
Who why they should not, cannot tell!
[40]Women are by
Themselves betray’d,
And to their short joys cruel,
Who foolishly20
Themselves persuade
Flames can outlast their fuel;
None (though platonic their pretence),
With reason love, unless by sense.
And he,[33:1] by whose25
Command to thee
I did my heart resign,
Now bids me choose
A deity
Diviner far than thine;30
No power can Love from Beauty sever:
I’m still Love’s subject; thine was, never.
The fairest she
Whom none surpass,
To love hath only right;35
And such to me
Thy beauty was,
Till one I found more bright;
But ’twere as impious to adore
Thee now, as not to have done ’t before.40
Nor is it just
By rules of Love,
Thou shouldst deny to quit
A heart that must
[41]Another’s prove45
Even in thy right to it;
Must not thy subjects captives be
To her who triumphs over thee?
Cease, then, in vain
To blot my name50
With forg’d apostasy!
Thine is that stain
Who dar’st to claim
What others ask of thee.
Of lovers they are only true55
Who pay their hearts where hearts[33:2] are due.

To Chariessa,

Beholding herself in a Glass.[34:1]

Cast, Chariessa, cast that glass away;
Not in its crystal face thine own survey.
What can be free from Love’s imperious laws,
When painted shadows real flames can cause?
The fires may burn thee from this mirror rise,5
By the reflected beams of thine own eyes;
And thus at last fall’n with thyself in love,
Thou wilt my rival, thine own[34:2] martyr, prove.
But if thou dost desire thy form to view,
Look in my heart, where Love thy picture drew,10
And then, if pleas’d with thine own shape thou be,
Learn how to love thyself by[34:3] loving me.


When I lie burning in thine eye,
Or freezing in thy breast,
What martyrs, in wish’d flames that die,
Are half so pleas’d or blest?
When thy soft accents through mine ear5
Into my soul do fly,
What angel would not quit his sphere,
To hear such harmony?
Or when the kiss thou gav’st me last
My soul stole in its breath,10
What life would sooner be embrac’d
Than so desir’d a death?
When I commanded am by thee,
(Or by thine eye or hand,)
What monarch would not prouder be15
To serve than to command?

Then think not[35:2] freedom I desire,
Or would my fetters leave,
Since, phœnix-like, I from this fire
Both life and youth receive.20


Fool! take up thy shaft again.
If thy store
Thou profusely spend in vain,
Who can furnish thee with more?
Throw not then away thy darts5
On impenetrable hearts.
Think not thy pale flame can warm
Into tears,
Or dissolve the snowy charm
Which her frozen bosom wears,10
That expos’d unmelted lies
To the bright suns of her eyes.
But since thou thy power hast lost,
Nor canst fire
Kindle in that breast, whose frost15
Doth these flames in mine inspire;
Not to thee but her I’ll sue,
That disdains both me and you!


Delay! Alas, there cannot be
To Love a greater tyranny:
Those cruel beauties that have slain
Their votaries by their disdain,
Or studied torments sharp and witty.5
Will be recorded for their pity,
[44]And after-ages be misled
To think them kind, when this is spread.
Of deaths the speediest is despair;
Delays the slowest tortures are;10
Thy cruelty at once destroys,
But expectation starves my joys.
Time and Delay may bring me past
The power of Love to cure, at last;
And shouldst thou wish to ease my pain,15
Thy pity might be lent in vain.
Or if thou hast decreed that I
Must fall[36:1] beneath thy cruelty,
O kill me soon! Thou wilt express
More mercy, ev’n in showing less.20

The Repulse.

Not that by this disdain
I am releas’d,
And, freed from thy romantic[37:1] chain,
Do I myself think blest;
Not that thy flame shall burn5
No more; for know
That I shall into ashes turn
Before this fire doth so.
Nor yet that unconfin’d
I now may rove,10
And with new beauties please my mind;
But that thou ne’er didst love!
[45]For since thou hast no part
Felt of this flame,
I only from thy tyrant heart15
Repuls’d, not banish’d, am.
To lose what once was mine
Would grieve me more
Than those inconstant sweets of thine
Had pleas’d my soul before.20
Now I’ve not lost that[37:2] bliss
I ne’er possessed;
And, spite of Fate, am blest in this:
That I was never blest.


Celinda, by what potent art
Or unresisted charm,
Dost thou thine ear and frozen heart
Against my passion arm?
Or by what hidden influence5
Of powers in one combin’d,
Dost thou rob Love of either sense,
Made deaf as well as blind?
Sure thou as friends[38:1] united hast
Two distant deities,10
And scorn within thy heart hast plac’d,
And love within thine eyes;
[46]Or those soft fetters of thy hair,
(A bondage that disdains
All liberty,) do guard thine ear15
Free from all other chains.
Then my complaint how canst thou hear,
Or I this passion fly,
Since thou imprison’d hast thine ear,
And not confin’d thine eye?20

The Tomb.

When, cruel fair one, I am slain
By thy disdain,
And as a trophy of thy scorn
To some old tomb am borne,
Thy fetters must their power bequeath5
To those of Death;
Nor can thy flame immortal burn
Like monumental fires within an urn.
Thus freed from thy proud empire, I shall prove
There is more liberty in Death than Love.10
And when forsaken lovers come
To see my tomb,
Take heed thou mix not with the crowd,
And, as a victor, proud
To view the spoils thy beauty made,15
Press near my shade!
[47]Lest thy too cruel breath, or name,
Should fan my ashes back into a flame.
And thou, devour’d by this revengeful fire,
His sacrifice, who died as thine, expire.20
} [39:1]

Or should my dust thy pity move
That could not, love,
Thy sighs might wake me, and thy tears
Renew my life and years;
Or should thy proud insulting scorn25
Laugh at my urn,
Kindly deceiv’d by thy disdain,
I might be smil’d into new life again.
Then come not near: since both thy love and hate
Have equal power to kill[39:2] or animate.30
But if cold earth or marble must
Conceal my dust,
Whilst, hid in some dark ruins, I
Dumb and forgotten lie,
The pride of all thy victory35
Will sleep with me;
And they who should attest thy glory
Will or forget, or not believe this story.
Then, to increase thy triumph, let me rest,
(Since by thine eye slain,) buried in thy breast!40

To Celia.[48]


Dear, urge no more the killing cause
Of our divorce:
Love is not fetter’d by such laws,
Nor bows to any force.
Though thou deniest I should be thine,5
Yet say not thou deserv’st not to be mine!
Oh, rather frown away my breath
With thy disdain,
Or flatter me with smiles to death;
By joy or sorrow slain,10
’Tis less crime to be kill’d by thee,
Than I thus cause of mine[40:2] own death should be.
Thyself of beauty to divest,
And me of love,
Or from the worth of thine own breast15
Thus to detract, would prove
In us a blindness, and in thee
At best a sacrilegious modesty.
But, Celia,[40:3] if thou wilt despise
What all admire,20
Nor rate thyself at the just price
Of beauty or desire,
Yet meet my flames! and thou shalt see
That equal love knows no disparity.

The Kiss.[49][41:1]

When on thy lip my soul I breathe,
Which there meets thine,
Freed from their fetters by this death,
Our subtle forms[41:2] combine:
Thus without bonds of sense they move,5
And like two cherubim converse by[41:3] love.
Spirits to chains of earth confin’d
Discourse by sense;
But ours, that are by flames refin’d,
With those weak ties dispense.10
Let such in words their minds display:
We in a kiss our mutual thoughts convey.[41:4]
But since my soul from me doth fly,
To thee retir’d,
Thou canst not both retain; for I15
Must be with one inspir’d;
Then, Dearest,[41:5] either justly mine
Restore, or in exchange let me have thine.
Yet if thou dost return mine own,
O tak’t again!20
For ’tis this pleasing death alone
Gives ease unto my pain.
Kill me once more, or I shall find
Thy pity than thy cruelty less kind.

The Snowball.[50]

Doris, I that could repel
All those darts about thee dwell,
And had wisely learn’d to fear
’Cause I saw a foe so near;
I that my deaf ear did arm5
’Gainst thy voice’s powerful charm;
And the lightning of thine eye
Durst, by closing mine, defy;
Cannot this cold snow withstand
From the winter[42:1] of thy hand.10
Thy deceit hath thus done more
Than thy open force before:
For who could suspect or fear
Treason in a face so clear,
Or the hidden fires descry15
Wrapt in this cold outside lie?
Flames might thus, involv’d in ice,
The deceiv’d world sacrifice;
Nature, ignorant of this
Strange antiperistasis,20
Would her falling frame admire,
That by snow were set on fire!

Speaking and Kissing.

The air which thy smooth voice doth break
Into my soul like lightning flies;
My life retires whilst thou dost speak,
And thy soft breath its room supplies.
[51]Lost in this pleasing ecstasy,5
I join my trembling lips to thine,
And back receive that life from thee,
Which I so gladly did resign.
Forbear, platonic fools! t’inquire
What numbers do the soul compose:10
No harmony can life inspire,
But that which from these accents flows.

The Deposition.[43:1]

Though when I lov’d thee thou wert[43:2] fair,
Thou art no longer so:
Those glories do[43:3] the pride they wear
Unto opinion owe.
Beauties, like stars, in borrow’d lustre shine;5
And ’twas my love that gave thee thine.
The flames that dwelt within thine eye
Do now with mine expire;
Thy brightest graces[43:4] fade and die
At once, with my desire.10
Love’s fires thus mutual influence return:
Thine cease to shine when mine to burn.
Then, proud Celinda, hope no more
To be implor’d or woo’d,
Since by thy scorn thou dost restore15
The wealth my[43:5] love bestow’d;
And thy despis’d disdain too late shall find
That none are fair but who are kind.

Love’s Heretic.[52]

He whose active thoughts disdain
To be captive to one foe,
And would break his single chain,
Or else more would undergo,
Let him learn the art of me,5
By new bondage to be free!
What tyrannic mistress dare
To one beauty Love confine?
Who, unbounded as the air,
All may court, but none decline.10
Why should we the heart deny
As many objects as the eye?
Wheresoe’er I turn or move,
A new passion doth detain me:
Those kind beauties that do love,15
Or those proud ones that disdain me.
This frown melts, and that smile burns me;
This to tears, that, ashes, turns me.
Soft fresh virgins not full-blown
With their youthful sweetness take me;20
Sober matrons that have known,
Long since, what these prove, awake me;
Here, staid coldness I admire,
There, the lively active fire.
[53]She that doth by skill dispense25
Every favour she bestows,
Or the harmless innocence
Which nor court nor city knows;—
Both alike my soul inflame,
That wild beauty, and this tame.30
She that wisely can adorn
Nature with the wealth of Art,
Or whose rural sweets do scorn
Borrow’d helps to[44:1] take a heart;—
The vain care of that’s my pleasure;35
Poverty of this, my treasure.
Both the wanton and the coy
Me with equal pleasure[44:2] move;
She whom I by force enjoy,
Or who forceth me to love:40
This, because she’ll not confess,
That, not hide, her happiness.
She whose loosely flowing hair,
(Scatter’d like the beams o’ th’ morn.)
Playing with the sportive air,45
Hides the sweets it doth adorn,
Captive in that net restrains me,
In those golden fetters chains me;
[54]Nor doth she with power less bright
My divided heart invade,50
Whose soft tresses spread, like night,
O’er her shoulders a black shade;
For the starlight of her eyes
Brighter shines through those dark skies.
Black, or fair, or tall, or low,55
I alike with all can sport,
The bold sprightly Thaïs woo,
Or the frozen vestal court:
Every beauty takes my mind,
Tied to all, to none confin’d.60

La Belle Confidante.

You earthly souls that court a wanton flame,
Whose pale weak influence
Can rise no higher than the humble name
And narrow laws of sense!
Learn by our friendship to create5
An immaterial fire,
Whose brightness angels may admire
But cannot emulate.
Sickness may fright the roses from her cheek,
Or make the lilies fade,10
But all the subtle ways that Death doth seek
Cannot my love invade.
[55]Flames that are kindled by the eye
Through time and age expire,
But ours, that boast a reach far higher,15
Cannot decay or die.[45:1]
For[45:2] when we must resign our vital breath,
Our loves by Fate benighted,[45:3]
We by this friendship shall survive in death,
Even in divorce united:20
Weak love, through fortune or distrust,
In time forgets to burn,
But this pursues us to the urn,
And marries either’s dust.

La Belle Ennemie.

I yield, dear enemy, nor know
How to resist so fair a foe.
Who would not thy soft yoke sustain,
And bow beneath thy easy chain,
That with a bondage blest might be5
Which far transcends all liberty?
But since I freely have resign’d,
At first assault, my willing mind,
Insult not o’er my captiv’d heart
With too much tyranny and art,10
Lest by thy scorn thou lose the prize
Gain’d by the power of thy bright eyes;
And thou this conquest thus shalt prove,
Though got by beauty, kept by love.

Love Deposed.[56]

You that unto your mistress’ eyes
Your hearts do sacrifice,
And offer sighs or tears at Love’s rich shrine,
Renounce with me
Th’ idolatry,5
Nor this infernal power esteem divine!
The brand, the quiver, and the bow,
Which we did first bestow,
And he as tribute wears from every lover,
I back again10
From him have ta’en,
And the impostor now unveil’d discover.
I can the feeble Child disarm,
Untie his mystic charm,
Divest him of his wings, and break his arrow;15
We will obey
No more his sway,
Nor live confin’d to laws or bounds so narrow
And you, bright Beauties, that inspire
The Boy’s pale torch with fire,20
We safely now your subtle power despise,
And unscorch’d may,
Like atoms, play
And wanton in the sunshine of your eyes.
[57]Nor think hereafter by new arts25
You can bewitch our hearts,
Or raise this devil by your pleasing charm:
We will no more
His power implore,
Unless, like Indians, that he do no harm.30

The Divorce.

Dear, back my wounded heart restore,
And turn away thy powerful eyes;
Flatter my willing soul no more:
Love must not[46:1] hope what Fate denies.
Take, take away thy smiles and kisses!5
Thy love wounds deeper than disdain;
For he that sees the heaven he misses,
Sustains two hells of loss and pain.
Shouldst thou some other’s suit prefer,
I might return thy scorn to thee,10
And learn apostasy of her
Who taught me, first, idolatry.[46:2]
Or in thy unrelenting breast
Should I[46:3] disdain or coyness move,
He by thy hate might be releas’d,15
Who now is prisoner to thy love.
} [46:4]

[58]Since, then, unkind Fate will divorce
Those whom affection long united,
Be thou as cruel as this force,
And I in death shall be delighted.20
Thus whilst so many suppliants woo,
And beg they may thy pity prove,
} [46:5]

I only for thy scorn do sue:
’Tis charity here not to love.

The Bracelet.

Rebellious fools that scorn to bow
Beneath Love’s easy sway,
Whose stubborn wills no laws allow,
Disdaining to obey,
Mark but this wreath of hair, and you shall see5
None that might wear such fetters would be free.
I once could boast a soul like you,
As unconfin’d as air;
But mine, which force could not subdue,
Was caught within this snare;10
And by myself betray’d, I for this gold
Have to mine enemy my freedom sold.[47:1]
No longer now, wise Art, inquire,
(With this vain search delighted,)
How souls that human[47:2] breasts inspire15
Are to their frames united:
Material chains such spirits well may bind,
When this soft braid can tie both arm and mind.
[59]Now, Beauties, I defy your charm,
Rul’d by more powerful art:20
This mystic wreath which crowns my arm
Defends my vanquish’d heart;[47:3]
And I, subdu’d by one more fair, shall be
Secur’d from conquest by captivity.

The Farewell.

Since Fate commands me hence, and I
Must leave my soul with thee, and die,
Dear, spare one sigh, or else let fall
A tear to crown my funeral,
That I may tell my grieved heart5
Thou art unwilling we should part;
And martyrs that embrace the fire
Shall with less joy than I expire.
With this last kiss I will bequeath
My soul, transfus’d into thy breath,10
Whose active heat shall gently slide
Into thy breast, and there reside,
And may, (in spite of Fate thus blest,)
Be, in this death, of heaven possess’d.[48:1]
Then prove but kind; and thou shalt see15
Love hath more power than Destiny.

The Exchange: Dialogue.[60][49:1]

That kiss which last thou gav’st me, stole
My fainting life away;
Yet, though to thy breast fled, my soul
Still in mine own doth stay.
Weak Nature no such power doth know:5
Love only can these wonders show.
} [49:2]

And with the same warm breath did mine
Into thy bosom slide,
There dwell, contracted unto thine,
Yet still with me reside.10
Weak Nature no such power doth know:
Love only can these wonders show.
Both souls thus in desire are one,
And each is two in skill,
Doubled in intellect alone,15
United in the will.
Weak Nature no such power doth know:
Love only can these wonders show.

The Exequies.[61]

Draw near,
You lovers, that complain
Of Fortune or Disdain,
And to my ashes lend a tear.
Melt the hard marble with your groans,5
And soften the relentless stones,
Whose cold embraces the sad subject hide
Of all Love’s cruelties, and Beauty’s pride.
} [50:1]

No verse,
No epicedium, bring;10
Nor peaceful requiem sing,
To charm the terrors of my hearse;
No profane numbers must flow near
The sacred silence that dwells here.
Vast griefs are dumb: softly, oh softly mourn!15
Lest you disturb the peace attends my urn.
Yet strew
Upon my dismal grave
Such offerings as you have:
Forsaken cypress, and sad yew;20
For kinder flowers can take no birth
Or growth from such unhappy earth.
Weep only o’er my dust, and say: “Here lies
To Love and Fate an equal sacrifice.”

The Silkworm.[62]

The[51:1] silkworm, to long sleep retir’d,
The early year hath re-inspir’d,
Who now to pay to thee prepares
The tribute of her pleasing cares;
And hastens with industrious toil5
To make her ornament thy spoil.[51:2]
See with what pains[51:3] she spins for thee
The thread of her own destiny,
Then, (growing proud in death, to know
That all her curious labours thou[51:4]10
Wilt, as in triumph, deign to wear!)
Retires to her soft sepulchre.
Such, Dearest, is that hapless state
To which I am design’d by Fate,
Who, by thee willingly o’ercome,15
Work mine own fetters and my tomb.


I must no longer now admire
The coldness which possess’d
Thy snowy breast,
That can by other flames be set on fire;
Poor Love, to harsh Disdain betray’d,5
Is by Ambition thus outweigh’d.
[63]Hadst thou but known the vast extent
Of constant faith, how far
’Bove all that are
Born slaves to wealth, or honours’ vain ascent;[52:1]10
No richer treasure couldst thou find
Than hearts with mutual chains combin’d.
But Love is too despis’d a name,
And must not hope to rise
Above these ties.15
Honours[52:2] and wealth outshine his paler flame!
These unite souls, whilst true desire
Unpitied dies in its own fire.
Yet, cruel fair one, I did aim
With no less justice too,20
Than those that sue
For other hopes, and thy proud fortunes claim.
Wealth honours, honours wealth, approve;
But Beauty’s only meant for Love.


When, dearest Beauty, thou shalt pay
Thy faith and my vain hope away
To some dull soul that cannot know
The worth of that thou dost bestow;
Lest[53:1] with my sighs and tears I might5
Disturb thy unconfin’d delight,
To some dark shade I will retire,
And there, forgot by all, expire.
[64]Thus, whilst the difference thou shalt prove
Betwixt a feign’d and real love,10
Whilst he, more happy, but less true,
Shall reap those joys I did pursue,
And with those pleasures crowned be
By Fate, which Love design’d for me,
Then thou perhaps thyself wilt find15
Cruel too long, or too soon kind.


I will not trust thy tempting graces,
Or thy deceitful charms,
Nor prisoner be to thy embraces,
Or fetter’d in thy arms;
No, Celia, no: not all thy art5
Can wound or captivate my heart.
I will not gaze upon thy eyes,
Or wanton with thy hair,
Lest those should burn me by surprise,
Or these my soul ensnare;10
Nor with those smiling dangers play,
Or fool my liberty away.
Since, then, my wary heart is free
And unconfin’d as thine,
If thou wouldst mine should captiv’d[54:1] be,15
Thou must thine own resign;
And gratitude may thus move more
Than love or beauty could before.


No, I will sooner trust the wind,
When, falsely kind,
It courts the pregnant sails into a storm,
And when the smiling waves persuade,
Be willingly betray’d,5
Than thy deceitful vows or form.
Go, and beguile some easy heart
With thy vain art;
Thy smiles and kisses on those fools bestow
Who only see the calms that sleep10
On this smooth flattering deep,
But not the hidden dangers know.
They that, like me, thy falsehood prove,
Will scorn thy love,
Some may, deceiv’d at first, adore thy shrine;15
But he that as thy sacrifice
Doth willingly fall twice,
Dies his own martyr, and not thine.


I prithee let my heart alone!
Since now ’tis raised above thee:
Not all the beauty thou dost own
Again can make me love thee.
[66]He that was shipwreck’d once before5
By such a Siren’s call,
And yet neglects to shun the[55:1] shore,
Deserves his second fall!
Each flattering kiss, each tempting smile
Thou dost in vain bestow,10
Some other lovers might beguile
Who not thy falsehood know.
But I am proof against all art:
No vows shall e’er persuade me
Twice to present a wounded heart15
To her that hath betray’d me.
Could I again be brought to love
Thy form, though more divine,
I might thy scorn as justly move
As now thou sufferest mine.20

The Loss.

Yet ere I go,
Disdainful Beauty, thou shalt be
So wretched as to know
What joys thou fling’st away with me:
A faith so bright,5
As Time or Fortune could not rust,
So firm, that lovers might
Have read thy story in my dust,
[67]And crown’d thy name
With laurel verdant as thy youth.10
Whilst the shrill voice of Fame
Spread wide thy beauty and my truth.
This thou hast lost!
For all true lovers, when they find
That my just aims were crossed,15
Will speak thee lighter than the wind;
And none will lay
Any oblation on thy shrine,
But such as would betray
Their[56:1] faith to faiths as false as thine.20
Yet if thou choose
On such thy freedom to bestow,
Affection may excuse:
For love from sympathy doth flow.

The Self-Cruel.[57:1]

Cast off, for shame, ungentle maid,
That misbecoming joy thou wear’st!
For in my death (though long delay’d),
Unwisely cruel thou appear’st.
Insult o’er captives with disdain:5
Thou canst not triumph o’er the slain.
[68]No, I am now no longer thine;
Nor canst thou take delight to see
Him whom thy love did once confine
Set, though by death, at liberty;10
For if my fall a smile beget,
Thou gloriest in thy own defeat.
Behold how thy unthrifty pride
Hath murthered him that did maintain it;
And wary souls who never tried15
Thy tyrant beauty, will disdain it:
But I am softer, and, (though[57:2] me
Thou wouldst not pity,) pity thee.

An Answer to a Song, “Wert thou much [?] Fairer than thou art,” by Mr. W. M.[58:1]

Wert thou by all affections sought,
And fairer than thou wouldst be thought,
Or had thine eyes as many darts
As thou believ’st they shoot at hearts,
Yet if thy love were paid to me,5
I would not offer mine to thee.
I’d sooner court a fever’s heat,
Than her that owns a flame as[58:2] great.
She that my love will entertain
Must meet it with no less disdain;10
For mutual fires themselves destroy,
And willing kisses yield no joy.
[69]I love thee not because alone
Thou canst all beauty call thine own,
Nor doth my passion fuel seek15
In thy bright eye or softer cheek.
Then, Fairest! if thou wouldst know why:
I love thee ’cause thou canst deny.

The Relapse.[59:1]

O turn away those cruel eyes,
The stars of my undoing!
Or death, in such a bright disguise,
May tempt a second wooing.
Punish their blindly impious[59:2] pride,5
Who dare contemn thy glory!
It was my fall[59:3] that deified
Thy name, and seal’d thy story.
Yet no new sufferings can prepare
A higher praise to crown thee;10
Though my first death proclaim thee fair,
My second will unthrone thee.
Lovers will doubt thou canst entice
No other for thy fuel,
And if thou burn one victim twice,15
Both think thee poor and cruel!




The Revenge.


Fair rebel to thyself and Time,
Who laugh’st at all my tears,
When thou hast lost thy youthful prime,
And Age his trophy rears,
Weighing thy inconsiderate pride,5
Thou shalt in vain accuse it:
‘Why beauty am I now denied,
Or knew not then to use it?’
Then shall I wish, ungentle Fair,
Thou in like flames may’st burn!10
Venus, if just, will hear my prayer,
And I shall laugh my turn.

Claim to Love.[72]


Alas! alas! thou turn’st in vain
Thy beauteous face away,
Which, like young sorcerers, rais’d a pain
Above its power to lay.
Love moves not as thou turn’st thy[60:1] look,5
But here doth firmly rest:
He long ago thine[60:2] eyes forsook
To revel in my breast.
Thy power on him why hop’st thou more
Than his on me should be?10
The claim thou lay’st to him is poor
To that he owns from me.
His substance in my heart excels,
His shadow, in thy sight:
Fire where it burns more truly dwells15
Than where it scatters light.

The Sick Lover.


My sickly breath
Wastes in a double flame,
Whilst Love and Death
To my poor life lay claim;
The fever in whose heat I melt5
By her that causeth it[61:1] not felt.
[73]Thou who alone
Canst, yet wilt grant no ease,
Why slight’st thou one,
To feed a new disease?10
Unequal Fair! the heart is thine:
Ah, why then should the pain be mine?

Time Recover’d.


Come, my Dear, whilst youth conspires
With the warmth of our desires!
Envious Time about thee watches,
And some grace each minute snatches:
Now a spirit, now a ray5
From thy eye he steals away;
Now he blasts some blooming rose
Which upon thy fresh cheek grows;
Gold now plunders in a hair;
Now the rubies doth impair10
Of thy lips; and with sure haste
All thy wealth will take at last;
Only that of which thou mak’st
Use in time, from Time thou tak’st.


[De Voiture.]

I languish in a silent flame:
For she to whom my vows incline
Doth own perfections so divine,
That but to speak were to disclose her name.
[74]If I should say that she the store5
Of Nature’s graces doth comprise,
(The love and wonder of all eyes,)
Who will not guess the Beauty I adore?
Or though I warily conceal
The charms her looks and soul possess,10
Should I her cruelty express,
And say she smiles at all the pains we feel,
Among such suppliants as implore
Pity, distributing her hate,
Inexorable as their fate,—15
Who will not guess the Beauty I adore?

Apollo and Daphne.


When Phœbus saw a rugged bark beguile
His love, and his embraces intercept,
The leaves, instructed by his grief to smile,
Taking fresh growth and verdure as he wept,
‘How can,’ saith he, ‘my woes expect release,5
When these,[62:1] the subject of my tears, increase?’
His chang’d yet scorn-retaining Fair he kiss’d,
From the lov’d trunk plucking a little bough,
And though the conquest which he sought he miss’d,
With that triumphant spoil adorns his brow.10
Thus this disdainful maid his aim deceives:
Where he expected fruit he gathers leaves.

Song: Torment of Absence and Delay.[75]


Torment of absence and delay
That thus afflicts my memory!
Why dost thou kill me every day,
Yet will not give me leave to die?
Why dost thou suffer me to live5
All hope of life in life denying,
Or to my patience tortures give
Never to die, yet ever dying?
To fair Narcissa’s brighter eyes
I was by Love’s instruction guided,10
(A happiness I long did prize,)
But now am from their light divided.
Favours and gifts my suit obtain’d,
But envious Fate would now destroy them,
Which if to lose I only gain’d,15
What greater pain than to enjoy them?

A Lady Weeping.


As when some brook flies from itself away,
The murmuring crystal loosely runs astray,
And, as about the verdant plain it winds,
The meadows with a silver ribbon binds,
Printing a kiss on every flower she meets,5
Losing herself to fill them with new sweets,
[76]To scatter frost upon the lily’s head.
And scarlet on the gilliflower to spread,—
So melting sorrow, in the fair disguise
Of humid stars,[63:1] flow’d from bright Chloris’ eyes,10
Which, watering every flower her cheek discloses,
Melts into jasmines here, there into roses.

To his Mistress in Absence.


Far from thy dearest self, the scope
Of all my aims,
I waste in secret flames;
And only live because I hope.
O when will Fate restore5
The joys, in whose bright fire
My expectation shall expire,
That I may live because I hope no more!

The Hasty Kiss.


A kiss I begg’d, and thou didst[64:1] join
Thy[64:2] lips to mine;
Then, as afraid, snatch’d[64:3] back their treasure,
And mock’d[64:4] my pleasure.
Again, my Dearest![64:5]—for in this5
Thou only gav’st[64:6] desire, and not a kiss.

Song: When thou thy pliant arms.[77]


When thou thy pliant arms dost wreathe
About my neck, and gently breathe
Into my breast that soft sweet air
With which thy soul doth mine repair;
When my faint life thou draw’st away,5
(My life which scorching flames decay,)
O’ercharg’d, my panting bosom boils,
Whose fever thy kind art beguiles,
And with the breath that did inspire
Doth mildly fan my glowing fire.10
Transported, then I cry: ‘Above
All other deities is Love!
Or if a deity there be
Greater than Love, ’tis only thee.’

Song: ’Tis no kiss.


’Tis no kiss my Fair bestows!
Nectar ’tis, whence new life flows.
All the sweets which nimble bees
In their osier treasuries
With unequall’d art repose,5
In one kiss, her lips disclose.
These, if I should many take,
Soon would me immortal make,
[78]Rais’d to the divine abodes,
And the banquets of the gods.10
Be not, then, too lavish, Fair!
But this heavenly treasure spare,
’Less thou’lt, too, immortal be:
For without thy company
What to me were the abodes15
Or the banquets of the gods?

Translated from Anacreon.

I. The Chase.

With a whip of lilies, Love
Swiftly me before him drove:
On we cours’d it through deep floods,
Hollow valleys, and rough woods,
Till a snake that lurking lay5
Chanc’d to sting me by the way.
Now my soul was nigh to death,
Ebbing, flowing, with my breath,
When Love, fanning with his wings,
Back my fleeting spirit brings:10
‘Learn,’ saith he, ’another day,
Love without constraint t’obey!’


Vex no more thyself and me
With demure philosophy,
Hollow precepts, only fit
To amuse the busy wit.
[79]Teach me brisk Lyæus’ rites;5
Teach me Venus’ blithe delights.
Jove[65:1] loves water: give me wine,
That my soul ere I resign
May this cure of sorrow have.
There’s no drinking in the grave!10

III. The Spring.

See, the Spring herself discloses,
And the Graces gather roses;
See how the becalmed seas
Now their swelling waves appease;
How the duck swims; how the crane5
Comes from ’s winter home again;
See how Titan’s cheerful ray
Chaseth the dark clouds away!
Now in their new robes of green
Are the ploughman’s labours seen;10
Now the lusty teeming earth
Springs, each hour, with a new birth;
Now the olive blooms; the vine
Now cloth with plump pendants shine,
And with leaves and blossoms now15
Freshly bourgeons every bough.

IV. The Combat.

Now will I a lover be!
Love himself commanded me.
Full at first of stubborn pride,
To submit, my soul denied.20
[80]He his quiver takes, and bow,
Bids defiance: forth I go.
Armed with spear and shield we meet:
On he charges: I retreat,
Till, perceiving in the fight25
He had wasted every flight,
Into me, with fury hot,
Like a dart himself he shot.
And my cold heart melts; my shield
Useless, no defence could yield;30
For what boots an outward screen,
When, alas, the fight’s within?


On this verdant lotus laid,
Underneath the myrtle’s shade,
Let us drink our sorrows dead,
Whilst Love plays the Ganymed.
Life like to[66:1] a wheel runs round:5
And, ere long, we underground
Ta’en by death asunder, must
Moulder in forgotten dust.
Why then graves should we bedew,
Why the ground with odours strew?10
Better, whilst alive, prepare
Flowers and unguents for our hair.
[81]Come, my Fair,[66:2] and come away!
All our cares behind us lay,
That these pleasures we may know,15
Ere we come to those below.

E. Catalectis Vet[erum] Poet[arum].

A small well-gotten stock, and country seat
I have, yet my content makes both seem great.
My quiet soul to fears is not inur’d,
And from the sins of idleness secur’d.
Others may seek the camp, others the town,5
And fool themselves with pleasure or renown;
Let me, unminded in the common crowd,
Live, master of the time that I’m allow’d!

Seven Epigrams.[67:1]


I. Upon One named Aster.

The stars, my Star! thou view’st: heaven I would be,
That I with thousand eyes might gaze on thee.

II. Upon Aster’s Death.

A Phosphor ’mongst the living late wert thou,
But shin’st, among the dead, a Hesper now.

III. On Dion, engraved on his Tomb at Syracuse.[82]

Old Hecuba, the Trojan matron’s, years
Were interwoven by the Fates with tears,
But thee, with blooming hopes, my Dion! deck’d,
Gods did a trophy of their power erect.
Thy honour’d relics in thy country rest,5
Ah, Dion! whose love rages in my breast.

IV. On Alexis.

‘Fair is Alexis,’ I no sooner said,
When every one his eyes that way convey’d.
My soul, as when some dog a bone we show
Who snatcheth it,—lost we not Phaedrus so?

V. On Archaeanassa.

To Archaeanassa, on whose furrow’d brow
Love sits in triumph, I my service vow.
If her declining graces shine so bright,
What flames felt you who saw her noon of light?

VI. Love Sleeping.

Within the covert of a shady grove
We saw the little red-cheek’d god of Love:
He had nor bow nor quiver: these among
The neighbouring trees upon a bow were hung.
Upon a bank of tender rosebuds laid,5
He smiling slept; bees with their noise invade
His rest, and on his lips their honey made.

VII. On a Seal.[83]

Five oxen, grazing in a flowery mead,
A jasper seal, (done to the life,) doth hold;
The little herd away long since had fled,
Were’t not enclos’d within a pale of gold.



1:1. To the Countess of S. with ‘The Holy Court’ (p. 6).

This is most probably Dorothy Spencer, born Sidney, Countess of Sunderland, Waller’s ‘Saccharissa,’ then a widow: a woman entirely worthy of Stanley’s admiration, and within his circle of personal friends. The Holy Court, a practical and devotional treatise by Nicolas Caussin, S.J., was first translated into English by Sir Thomas Hawkins, and published in London in 1626. There was a fine five-volume edition printed in 1650. A copy of this may, very likely, have been Stanley’s gift. The poem, 1651, is preceded by ‘Madam’ in formal address.

2:1. Drawn for Valentine, etc. (p. 7).

The Editor guesses this young lady, the ‘bright dawn,’ who will ‘challenge every heart,’ later, to be the future Marchioness of Halifax, the little Dorothy, daughter of the Earl of Sunderland (who was killed at Newbury when she was three years old), and ‘Saccharissa.’ She was eleven in 1651. Waller, Sedley, and others, have left happier poems addressed to children, in the same forced tone, which was quite characteristic of the time.

Dear, fold me once more in thine arms’ (p. 10).


3:1. P. 10, line 15. A final couplet difficult to scan. If correctly printed, it has a dissyllable rhyme, with the accentual stress on ‘wi’ thee.’

Love’s Innocence (p. 12).

4:1. P. 12. The 1647 title is ‘The Innocence of Love.’

4:2. P.  ”  line 1. 1647 reads:

‘See how this ivy, Dear, doth twine.’

4:3. P.  ”  line 7. 1647: ‘To one another whispering there.’

4:4. P.  ”  lines 9-12. 1647:

‘Then blush not, Fair, that flame to show,
Which, like thyself, no crime can know.
Thus, led by those chaste guides, we may
Embrace and kiss as free as they.’

4:5. Pp. 12-13, lines 20-21. 1647:

‘As are our flames, ’bove reach of words.
Thus, Doris, we of these may learn.’

5:1. The Dedication (p. 13).

This, in the edition of 1647, is followed by twenty-seven lines of citations from the Greek poets, giving the origins of the epithets applied here to Love.

The Glow-Worm (p. 13).

6:1. P. 13, line 2. 1647 has:

‘This living star of earth.’

But Stanley’s sensitive sequence, ‘A star thought,’ etc., seems to forbid our recurring to the ‘living star’ as better than the ‘animated gem.’

6:2. P. 14, line 4. 1647: ‘deceiv’d.’

6:3. P.  ”  line 12. 1647:

‘Which doth deceive.’

7:1. To Chariessa (p. 14).

The title, 1651, is simply: ‘Desiring her to Burn his Verses.’

7:2. P. 14, line 4. 1647: ‘as.’

7:3. P. 15, line 7. 1651: ‘about.’

8:1. On Mr. Fletcher’s Works (p. 15).[87]

Title, in Stanley, 1651, reads: ‘On the Edition of Mr. Fletcher’s Works.’

8:2. P. 15, line 5. 1651: ‘did.’

8:3. P.  ”  line 11. 1651: ‘could.’

8:4. P. 16, line 19. 1647: ‘doth.’

8:5. P.  ”  line 29. 1647 has ‘ris’’; 1651, ‘rise.’

8:6. P.  ”  line 30. ‘With’ reads ‘not’ in all texts: clearly a misprint.

9:1. To the Lady D[ormer]. Sic 1651 (p. 16).

This poem, under the title, ‘To my most honour’d Aunt, the Lady Dormer,’ is the dedication of 1647. Who this lady was is not clear to the Editor, unless she was Alice, daughter to Sir Richard Molyneux, Bart., of Sefton, Lancashire, widow of Sir William Dormer, and mother of the splendid first Earl of Carnarvon, killed in the King’s cause at Newbury, 1643. It is rather noticeable that many of Stanley’s friends and kinsfolk, like the Dormers, were Catholics.

To Mr. W. Hammond (p. 17).

10:1. P. 18, line 30. 1647 reads:

‘Nor any flame but what is thine will own.’

11:1. On Mr. Shirley’s Poems (p. 18).

Title in Stanley, 1647: ‘On Mr. I. S. his Poems.’

11:2. P. 18, line 7. 1647:

‘Next like some skilful artist, who to wonder.’

11:3. P.  ”  line 8. 1651 has ‘a piece.’

11:4. P. 19, line 19. 1647: ‘speech.’

11:5. P.  ”  line 21. ‘Voice’ tentative. Original texts have ‘veil.’

11:6. P.  ”  line 30. 1651: ‘poetry.’

[88]11:7. P. 19, lines 31-32 omitted in 1647.

11:8. P.  ”  line 33. Thus, 1647. 1651, erroneously:

‘And hast so far even future aims surpass’d.’

12:1. On Mr. Sherburne’s Translation, etc. (p. 20).

In Stanley, 1647, entitled: ‘To Mr. E. S. on his Translation of Medea, with the other Tragedies of Seneca the philosopher, and vindication of the Author.’ Sherburne was not knighted until 1682, four years after Stanley’s death.

12:2. P. 20, line 20. 1647: ‘author.’

13:1. On Mr. Hall’s Essays (p. 21).

In Stanley, 1647: ‘To Mr. I. H. on his Essays.’

13:2. P. 21, line 4. Here ends the prologue-like poem, in the edition of 1647. Then, as a separate piece on another page, under a new title, ‘To Mr. I. H.,’ follow these lines:

‘I’ll not commend thee; for thou hast outgrown
The reach of all men’s praises but thine own.
Encomiums to their full objects are exact:
To praise, and not at full, is to detract.
And with most justice,’ etc.

The rest as in the present edition. ‘Full,’ in the third line just quoted, is certainly a misprint, crept up from the line below.

13:3. P. 21, line 13. 1647 has:

‘The pride of others’ autumns poor appears.’

John Hall of Durham was but nineteen years old in 1646.

14:1. On Sir John Suckling, etc. (p. 22).

Fragmenta Aurea, the posthumous collection of Suckling’s poetry, came out in 1646, with a fine portrait engraving by Marshall.

15:1. Answer.

The verses by Stanley’s tutor and friend are reproduced in the editions both of 1647 and of 1651.


Μία ψύχη, δυὸ σώματα

By Mr. William Fairfax.

As in the crystal-centre of the sight
Two subtle beams make but one cone of light,
Or, when one flame twin’d with another is,
They both ascend in one bright pyramis;
Our spirits thus into each other flow,5
One in our being, one in what we know,
In what we will, desire, dislike, approve,
In what we love; and one is that pure love.
As in a burning glass the aerial flame
With the producing ray is still the same,10
We to love’s purest quintessence refin’d,
Do both become one undivided mind.
This sacred fire into itself converts
Our yielding spirits and our melting hearts,
Till both our lines into one spirit run;15
So several lines are in their centre one.
And when thy fair idea is impress’d
In the soft tablet of my easier breast,
The sweet reflexion brings such sympathy,
That I my better self behold in thee;20
And all perfections that in thee combine,
By this resultance are entirely mine.
Thy rays disperse my shades, who only live
Bright in the lustre thou art pleas’d to give,

15:2. P. 22, line 8. i.e. ‘I [who] know no native light but light borrowed from thee.’ The rather obscure phrase is obscured the more by its slovenly original punctuation.

15:3. P. 22, line 10. ‘Wouldst’: 1651.

The Blush (p. 24).

16:1. P. 24, line 11. ‘Conferr’d’ in 1647; ‘comferd’ in Gamble’s Ayres, 1657. The right word is obvious.

16:2. P. 24, line 16. ‘Knows’: 1647.

The Cold Kiss (p. 25).[90]

17:1. P. 25, line 3. ‘These’: 1657.

17:2. P.  ”  line 12. ‘My’: 1657.

17:3. P.  ”  line 15. ‘Lip’: 1657.

The Idolater (p. 25).

18:1. P. 26, line 7. ‘By’ in other texts, but ‘from’ in Gamble, 1856.

18:2. P.  ”  line 11. ‘He’ in 1647: the later text must be right.

18:3. P.  ”  line 18. ‘Breast’: 1647.

The Magnet (p. 26).

19:1. P. 26, line 9. ‘She’: 1657.

19:2. P. 27, line 13. ‘Then’: 1647.

Song: ‘Foolish Lover’ (p. 28).

20:1. P. 28, line 24. ‘Distinguish,’ by printer’s error, in 1657.

The Parting (p. 29).

21:1. P. 29, line 4. ‘Do’: 1647.

21:2. P.  ”  lines 5-6. 1647:

‘But when hereafter thou shalt know
That grief hath slain me, come.’

21:3. P.  ”  line 19. ‘Condemn’: 1647; ‘contain’: 1657. ‘Contemn’ is Stanley’s word, if one is to judge from the context.

Counsel (p. 29).

22:1. P. 29, line 4. ‘Creature’: 1647.

22:2. P. 30, line 7. ‘Their’: 1657.

22:3. P.  ”  line 10. This line is a tangle of misprints in 1657, viz.:

‘Stars to jewels they divest thee.’

22:4. P.  ”  line 13. ‘Powers’: a misprint of 1647.

22:5. P.  ”  lines 23-24. The final couplet in 1647 is:

‘Who would keep another’s heart,
With her own must never part.’

Expostulation with Love, in Despair (p. 30).[91]

The text here given is a composite. The variants follow:

23:1. P. 30, lines 1-4. 1647:

‘Love, with what strange tyrannic laws must they
Comply, which are subjected to thy sway!
How far all justice thy commands decline
Which though they hope forbid, yet love enjoin!’

The elision of the relative pronoun between lines 3 and 4 of the present text, and again in the course of line 5, is an irritating mannerism of the time, nowhere more frequent than in Stanley.

23:2. P. 31, line 9. 1657: ‘hope.’

23:3. P.  ”  line 10. 1647: ‘hopes as cold’; 1657: ‘thoughts that’s cold.’

23:4. P. 31, line 14. 1647:

‘When death and cold despair inhabit near?’

And 1657:

‘When death and old despair inhabit here?’

23:5. P. 31, line 15. 1647:

‘Rule in my breast alone, or else retire.’

23:6. P.  ”  line 16. 1647: ‘thy.’

23:7. P.  ”  lines 17-18. The closing couplet of 1647 reads:

‘Or let me not desire, or else possess!
Neither, or both, are equal happiness.’

And 1657:

‘Thus let me ...
Either, or both ...’

Song: ‘Faith, ’tis not worth your pains’ (p. 31).

24:1. P. 31, lines 2-3. 1657, blunderingly:

‘To seek t’inspire
A heart so pure as mine.’

24:2. P.  ”  line 12. 1647: ‘you’ll.’

Expectation (p. 32).

25:1. P. 32, line 5. 1647: ‘or.’

The Breath (p. 33).[92]

26:1. P. 33, line 8. Sic in 1647 and 1657. ‘He back receives’: 1651.

26:2. P.  ”  line 11. 1647 and 1657 have: ‘Which, while he sportively.’

Gamble evidently had the 1647 copy of this song before him, as he follows it throughout, slighting Stanley’s corrections of 1651.

26:3. P. 33, line 16. 1647 and 1657: ‘back.’

The Night: a Dialogue (p. 34).

27:1. P. 34, line 1. ‘Chariessa’ is misprinted, in 1651, ‘Charissa.’ The names are placed over the speeches. 1647 has for title: ‘Amori Notturni: A Dialogue between Philocharis and Chariessa.’

Unalter’d by Sickness (p. 35).

28:1. P. 35, lines 1-4. The editions of 1647 and 1651 start off:

‘Sickness, in vain thou dost invade
A beauty that can never fade.’

The additional opening lines figure only in 1657; there, however, ‘her’ in the second line is misprinted ‘our,’ and line 4 reads:

‘Those beauties which can never fade.’

28:2. P. 35, line 6. 1647, 1651:

‘One o’ th’ sweets which crown this Fair.’

But 1657:

‘On those sweets which crown her fair.’

28:3. P. 35, line 9. ‘Blushing’ in the earlier versions.

28:4. P.  ”  line 10. ‘Drooping’ in the earlier versions.

28:5. P.  ”  line 16. ‘But’ in 1657, to the confusion of the sense.

29:1. To Celia: Excuse for Wishing her less Fair (p. 36).

‘To Celia’ is omitted in 1651.

29:2. P. 36, lines 9-10. 1647:

‘Men might languish, and not die
At thy then less scorching fire.’

29:3. P.  ”  line 23. ‘Than’: 1657.

30:1. Celia, Sleeping or Singing (p. 37).[93]

‘Celia Singing’ is the title except in 1647, and the whole is there printed as one stanza.

30:2. P. 37, line 10. By a wickedly diverting mishap, ‘more’ reads ‘less’ in 1651 and 1657!

30:3. P. 37, line 12. ‘Flame,’ by error, in 1651 and 1657.

30:4. P.  ”  line 13. ‘His’: 1647.

30:5. P.  ”  line 18. ‘Cherubins’ in all three texts.

30:6. P.  ”  line 19. ‘Power’: 1647.

31:1. Palinode (p. 37).

Not in the edition of 1651. The poem is printed in this section on account of its relation to ‘The Return,’ which follows. ‘The Return’ is possibly but another version of ‘Palinode.’

31:2. P. 38, line 5. The Editor has ventured to print ‘That would,’ though against all three texts, which give ‘That wouldst.’ The meaning seems to be that the ‘proud empire’ of Beauty is rebellions to Reason or Philosophy, the restraints of which, (‘chains’) ‘would within tyrannic laws confine,’ etc.

31:3. P. 38, line 7. ‘Powerful’: 1657.

31:4. P.  ”  line 12. ‘In’: 1657.

The Return (p. 38).

32:1. P. 38, line 2. ‘Unite,’ by a misprint: 1651.

32:2. P.  ”  line 3. ‘Bounds’: 1651, 1657.

32:3. P.  ”  line 5. ‘That’: 1647.

32:4. P.  ”  line 7. ‘Sacred’: 1647, 1651.

32:5. P.  ”  line 10. ‘Which’: 1657.

32:6. P. 39, line 11. ‘Midst’: 1647, 1651.

32:7. P.  ”  line 13. ‘Th’’ dropped out in 1651.

Chang’d, yet Constant (p. 39).

33:1. P. 40, line 25. Eros.

33:2. P. 41, line 56. May the Editor be forgiven for altering, with no explicit help from printed texts, one word of this splendid lyric, in the very best impudent spirit of the time? The second ‘hearts’ in the closing line reads ‘they’ in all editions[94] of Stanley. It is possible that this word ‘they’ has been caught from the line just before, after a fashion only too familiar to copyists and printers. Even so, it would mean not ‘lovers’ but ‘hearts.’ The word ‘hearts,’ one is tempted to think, may be the right word.

34:1. To Chariessa: Beholding herself, etc. (p. 41).

The edition of 1651 omits ‘To Chariessa.’ The Editor regrets having included it, by an oversight, in this section.

34:2. P. 41, line 8. ‘One’: 1657.

34:3. P.  ”  line 12. The reading of 1657. ‘In’: 1647.

Song: ‘When I lie burning’ (p. 42).

35:1. P. 42, lines 13-16. This stanza, probably by inadvertence, is not included in the edition of 1651. ‘Eye,’ line 14, is ‘eyes’ in 1657; and ‘than,’ line 16, is misprinted ‘them’ in 1647.

35:2. P. 42. line 17. ‘No’: 1651 and 1657.

Delay (p. 43).

36:1. P. 44, line 18. ‘Be’: 1657.

The Repulse (p. 44).

37:1. P. 44, line 3. The reading of 1657. ‘Tyrannic’: 1647, 1651.

37:2. P. 45, line 21. ‘The’: 1651, 1657.

Song: ‘Celinda, by what potent art?’ (p. 45).

38:1. P. 45, line 9. ‘Friend’: 1647, 1651.

The Tomb (p. 46).

39:1. P. 47, lines 19-20. In the version of 1647, these lines read:

‘And (thou in this flame sacrific’d to me),
We might each other’s mutual martyr be.’

The whole third stanza is reproduced from 1647; it figures neither in 1651 nor in 1657.

39:2.[95] P. 47, line 30. ‘Love’: 1647; a manifest befogging duplication of the ‘love’ in the preceding line. ‘Kill’ seems to be called for, or perhaps ‘slay,’ a word less in favour with Stanley.

40:1. To Celia, pleading want of merit (p. 48).

1647: ‘To One that pleaded her own Want of Merit.’

40:2. P. 48, line 12. ‘My’: 1647.

40:3. P.  ”  line 19. The name in 1651, 1657; but ‘Dearest’ in 1647.

41:1. The Kiss. (p. 49).

1647: ‘The Killing Kiss.’

41:2. P. 49, line 4. ‘Forms’ may be a misprint of 1651, 1657. This line in 1647 reads:

‘They both unite and join.’

41:3. P. 49, line 6. ‘And’: 1651; ‘by’ (which carries out the context) in the others.

41:4. P. 49, line 12. 1647:

‘Our lips, our tongues, each other’s thoughts betray.’

41:5. P. 49, line 17. 1647: ‘Doris.’

The Snowball (p. 50).

42:1. P. 50, line 10. ‘Whiter’ in all; but ‘winter’ must be the word.

43:1. The Deposition (p. 50).

1647: ‘A Deposition from Beauty.’

43:2. P. 51, line 1. ‘Were’: 1651.

43:3. P.  ”  line 3. ‘Do’: 1647; somewhat clearer than ‘all,’ in the texts of 1651, 1657.

43:4. P. 51, line 9. ‘Glories’: 1651.

43:5. P.  ”  line 16. ‘Which’: 1647.

Love’s Heretic (p. 52).

44:1. P. 53, line 34. ‘That’: 1647.

44:2. P.  ”  line 38. ‘Pleasures’: 1651, 1657.

La Belle Confidante (p. 54).[96]

45:1. P. 55, line 16. ‘Can nor decay nor die’: 1651.

45:2. P. 55, line 17. ‘And’: 1647.

45:3. P.  ”  lines 18, 20. 1647:

‘Even in divorce delighted,
     .     .     .     .     .
Still in the grave united.’

The Divorce (p. 57).

46:1. P. 57, line 4. 1657: ‘cannot.’

46:2. P.  ”  line 12. 1647:

‘That taught me such idolatry.’

The line as printed in this book follows 1657.

46:3. P. 57, line 14. ‘Cold’: 1647.

46:4. P.  ”  lines 15-16. 1647:

‘I by thy hate might be releas’d,
Who now am prisoner to thy love.’

46:5. P. 58, lines 21-22. 1647:

‘Thus whilst so many suppliants do
Implore thy pity they may prove.’

The Bracelet (p. 58).

47:1. P. 58, line 12. 1651 and 1657 have the line revised to its detriment:

‘A heart that many storms withstood, have sold.’

47:2. P. 58, line 15. 1647: ‘souls that do our life inspire.’ ‘Human’ in 1651, but ‘humane,’ in the commoner spelling of the time, in 1657.

47:3. P. 59, line 22. Thus in 1651, 1657. 1647 has:

‘Guards and defends my heart.’

The Farewell (p. 59).

48:1. P. 59, lines 13-14. The text as given is 1657 only. 1647 has:

‘And may, in spite of Fate, thus blest,
Be, by this death, of heaven possess’d.’

And 1651:[97]

‘And be, in spite of Fate, thus blest,
By this sad death, of heaven possess’d.’

49:1. The Exchange: Dialogue (p. 60).

‘Exchange of Souls’: 1647.

49:2. P. 60, lines 5-6. This refrain is omitted after the speeches in 1651, but figures in other editions, earlier and later.

The Exequies (p. 61).

50:1. P. 61, lines 7-8. Text as given in 1651, 1657. 1647 has:

‘Whose cold embraces do a victim hide
That, paid to Beauty, on Love’s altar died.’

The Silkworm (p. 62).

51:1. P. 62, line 1. ‘This’: 1651, 1657.

51:2. P.  ”  line 6. All editions read:

‘To make thy ornament her spoil.’

Facts, and the context, force one to reverse the possessive pronouns.

51:3. P. 62, line 7. 1651: ‘pain.’

51:4. P.  ”  line 10. 1647:

‘That her rich work and labours, thou
Wilt,’ etc.

Ambition (p. 62).

52:1. P. 63, line 10. Misspelt ‘assent’ in 1657.

52:2. P.  ”  line 16. ‘Honour,’ in all texts, obviously wrong.

Song: ‘When, dearest Beauty’ (p. 63).

53:1. P. 63, line 5. ‘Left’: 1651; ‘least’: 1657.

Song: ‘I will not trust’ (p. 64).

54:1. P. 64, line 15. ‘Captive’: 1657; the older form in 1647, 1651.

Song: ‘I prithee’ (p. 65).[98]

55:1. P. 66, line 7. ‘That,’ 1647, 1651.

The Loss (p. 66).

56:1. P. 67, line 20. This word reads ‘thy’ in all editions of Stanley. The right reading is almost certainly ‘their.’

57:1. The Self-Cruel (p. 67).

Entitled ‘Song’: 1647.

57:2. P. 68, line 17. ‘That’ in all texts: but presumably a misprint.

58:1. An Answer to a Song: ‘Wert thou much [?] Fairer’ (p. 68).

Stanley gives the title inaccurately.

Mr. W. M.’s Wither-like song (the author of which the Editor has not identified), appears only in the edition of 1651:—

Wert thou yet fairer than thou art,
(Which lies not in the power of art,)
Or hadst thou in thine eyes more darts
Than ever Cupid shot at hearts;
Yet if they were not thrown at me,5
I would not cast a thought on thee.
I’d rather marry a disease,
Than court the thing I cannot please:
She that will cherish my desires
Must meet my flames with equal fires.10
What pleasure is there in a kiss,
To him that doubts the heart’s not his?
I love thee not because thou’rt fair,
Softer than down, smoother than air;
Nor for the Cupids that do lie15
In either corner of thine eye.
Wouldst thou then know what it might be?
’Tis I love you, ’cause you love me.

58:2. P. 68, line 8. ‘So’: 1647, 1651.

59:1. The Relapse (p. 69)[99]

Entitled simply ‘Song’ in 1647.

59:2. P. 69, line 5. ‘Blind and impious’: 1647.

59:3. P. 69, line 7. ‘Fall’: 1657; in the earlier versions ‘name,’ caught up by the compositor, in error, from the succeeding line. But the 1647 copy of Stanley in the Bodleian Library, which belonged to William Fairfax, has ‘name’ erased, and ‘fall’ written, in a seventeenth-century hand, above it.


Claim to Love. Guarini. [1651, 1657] (p. 72).

60:1. P. 72, line 5. ‘To’: 1651.

60:2. P.  ”  line 7. ‘Thy’: 1651.

The Sick Lover. Guarini. [1647, 1651, 1657] (p. 72).

61:1. P. 72, line 6. ‘It’ in all texts, possibly a misprint for ‘is.’

Apollo and Daphne. Marino. [1651] (p. 74).

62:1. P. 74, line 6. ‘Tears,’ manifestly wrong, in the text; ‘these’ as relating to ‘leaves,’ is inserted at a venture, and may or may not be the right word.

A Lady Weeping. Montalvan. [1651, 1657] (p. 75).

63:1. P. 76, line 10. ‘Stars’ in both texts; but this may be in error for ‘tears.’

The Hasty Kiss. Secundus. [1647, 1651, 1657] (p. 76).

64:1. P. 76, line 1. 1647: ‘she did.’

64:2. P.  ”  line 2. 1647: ‘her.’

[100]64:3. P. 76, line 3. 1651: ‘snatch.’

64:4. P.  ”  line 4. 1651: ‘mock.’

64:5. P.  ”  line 5. 1647: ‘my Chariessa!’

64:6. P.  ”  line 6. 1651: ‘gavest.’

Translations from Anacreon. [1651, 1657.]

65:1. No. II. P. 79, line 7. ‘Love,’ in both originals, is self-contradictory.

66:1. No. V. P. 80, line 5. ‘To’ omitted in 1657.

66:2. No. V. P. 81, line 13. So 1657. ‘My fair one’ elsewhere.

67:1. Seven. Epigrams: Plato. From Laertius and the Anthology. (p. 81.)



[Note.—The present ‘List’ may be looked upon as an apology for a Stanley Bibliography, which, on the present occasion, is an impossibility to the compiler, who has, to some extent, had to satisfy himself with the sparse details of the ordinary bibliographical works; in addition, he has been aided by the Editor of the present edition of Stanley’s Poems.—J. R. Tutin.]

1. [Anonymous lines[*] to Sir John Suckling occurring beneath Marshall’s portrait of him in edd. 1646-1696 of Suckling’s Works.

[*] Commencing: ‘Suckling, whose numbers could invite.’]

2. Poems and Translation. By Thomas Stanley, Esquire. Quæ mea culpa tamen, nisi si lusisse vocari Culpa potest: nisi culpa potest & amasse, vocari? Tout vient a poinct qui peut attendre. Printed for the Author, and his friends, 1647. Collation—[13 pp.] 49 pp. [+8 pp.]

In a copy of this edition in the Bodleian Library, Oxford [Mason cc. 297], is the following Note:—

‘Privately printed for presents only; afterwards reprinted in 1649 and 1650 for sale. The only other copy of this first edition I can trace was in Isaac Reed’s Sale.’

This 1647 edition has half-titles for Europa, Cupid Crucified, and Venus Vigils; but for Oronta and for Aurora, etc., a title: Oronta, The Cyprian Virgin, by Sigr Girolamo Preti. London.[102] Printed by F. B. for Humphrey Moseley at the Signe of the Princes Armes in St. Pauls Churchyard, 1637.

Aurora, Ismenia. By Don Juan Perez de Montalvan, 1648.

3. Europa, Cupid Crucified, Venus Vigils. With Annotations by Tho: Stanley, Esq. Printed by W. W. for Humphrey Moseley, and are to be sold at his shop at the Signe of the Princes Armes in St. Pauls Churchyard. 1649 [2], 61 pp.

4. Aurora, Ismenia, and the Prince, by Don Juan Perez de Montalvan. Oronta the Cyprian Virgin, by Signr Girolamo Preti. Tout vient a poinet qui peut attendre. Translated by Thomas Stanley, Esq.; The Second Edition, with additions. London. Printed by W. Wilson for Humphrey Moseley at the Signe of Princes Armes in St. Pauls Churchyard. 1650 [8 pp.], 87 p.

Considered by bibliographers part of succeeding (i.e. Poems of 1651), though the pagination begins anew and the date is 1650.

5. Poems, By Thomas Stanley, Esquire. Quæ mea culpa tamen, nisi si lusisse vocari Culpa potest: nisi culpa potest & amasse, vocari? Printed in the Year 1651. 86 pp.

6. Anacreon, Bion, Moschus: Kisses by Secundus: Cupid Crucified by Ausonius: Venus Vigils. Incerto authore. [Translated by Thomas Stanley.] Printed in the year 1651. 164 pp.

7. Sylvias Park by Theophile, Acanthus Complaint by Tristran, Oronto by Preti, Echo by Marino, Loves Embassy by Boscan, The Solitude by Gongora. [Translated by Thomas Stanley.] Printed in the year 1651. Pp. 167-212. (Paged continuously with Anacreon, Bion, etc.)

8. A Platonick Discourse upon Love. Written in Italian by John[103] Picus Mirandula, in Explication of Sonnet by Hieronimo Benvieni. [Translated by Thomas Stanley.] Printed in the year 1651. Pp. 215-260. (Paged continuously with Sylvias Park, etc.)

9. Poems by Thomas Stanley, Esquire. Quæ mea culpa tamen, nisi si lusisse vocari Culpa potest: nisi culpa potest et amasse, vocari. London: Printed for Humphrey Moseley, and are to be sold at his Shop at the Signe of the Princes Armes in S. Pauls Church Yard, 1652.

10. Ayres and Dialogues (To be Sung to the Theorbo-Lute or Bass-Violl). By John Gamble. Horat. Od. 2. 10.—Quondam cithara tacentem Suscitat Musam, neque semper arcum Tendit Apollo. London. Printed by William Godbid for the Author. 1656. [10 pp.] 83 pp. Fo.

Containing a full-page portrait of Gamble engraved by T. Cross. The Prefaces precede the complimentary Poems.

11. Ayres and Dialogues (To be Sung to the Theorbo-Lute or Bass-Violl). By John Gamble. Horat. Ode II., 10.—Quondam cithara tacentem Suscitat Musam, neque semper arcum Tendit Apollo. London: Printed by W. Godbid for Humphry Moseley at the Princes-Arms in St. Pauls Church-yard, 1657. [10 pp.] 78 pp. [+1]. Fo.

Followed by twenty very complimentary lines by Alexander Broome [Brome] addressed ‘To His Friend Thomas Stanley, Esq., On his Odes set and Published by Mr. John Gamble’; by twenty-two lines ‘On my Friend Mr. John Gamble his Excellent Composition of the Songs and Dialogues of Thomas Stanley, Esq.,’ signed Jo: Tatham; and a Preface of Gamble’s own, reproduced herewith. Then another Preface, To the Noble Few Lovers of Musick (Gamble’s); and poems, in order, by Richard Lovelace, Jo: Redmayne, Dudley Lovelace, and Eldred Revet.

[Gamble’s Preface, 1657.][104]

To the Worthy of all Honour, Thomas Stanley, Esq.

Sir,—You have been a merciful Creditor in the trust of these inestimable Poems so long with me, a person inconsiderable. But, I beseech you, think I have been sensible of the great obligation, and alwayes thought it a lesse trespass to break with all the world, then, by the least forgetfulness, make an unhappy forfeit of myself to your displeasure. Sir, I have brought home your Principal; and though it be a thing beneath your generous expectation to look at profit, yet I thought it became my justice to tender you a small interest, the endevours of my poor Art, to wait upon it: I acknowledge it a bold Undertaking to compose your Words, (which are so pure Harmonie in themselves,) into any other Musick. But it was not in my ambition or hope to mend the least Accent or Emphasis wch they received from your own numerous Soul, but to essay how neer a whole life spent in the study of Musical Compositions could imitate the flowing and naturall Graces which you have created by your Fancie. I have onely to say, if my zeal have not stained what you have excellently made, I will not despair of your pardon; and if any thing herein, (the wel-meant tender of my service,) may obtain your smile and permission, I shalbe confirmed in my thoughts that I may stil write myself,—Sir, The most humble and faithful of your Servants,

John Gamble.

In this collection of Stanley’s verse, 1656, 1657, the lyrics have no titles of any sort, but are numbered.

12. Psalterium Carolinum: the Devotions of His Sacred Majestie in his Solitudes and Sufferings rendred in Verse [from the Eikon Basilike by T. Stanley]. Set to Musick for 3 Voices and an Organ or Theorbo by John Wilson, Dr. and Music Professor of Oxford, London. Printed for John Martin and James Allestrey, and are to be sold at the Bell in St. Pauls Church-yard. 1657. Folio.

[105]13. Psalterium Carolinum: the Devotions of His Sacred Majesty Charles the First in his Solitudes and Sufferings. Rendred in Verse. London. Printed for John Martin, James Allestry, and Thomas Dicas, and are to be sold at the Bell in St. Pauls Church-yard, 1660.

The Dedication, to King Charles the Second, is signed Tho: Stanley. The twenty-seven paraphrases here are without the music. Fo.

14. Poems, by Thomas Stanley, Esq. Quæ mea culpa tamen, nisi si lucisse [sic] vocari Culpa potest: nisi culpa potest et amasse, vocans [sic]. Reprinted from the Edition of 1651. London: From the Private Press of Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown. Printed by T. Davison, Whitefriars. 1814. Pp. xxiv. 107. crown 8vo.

Edited, with Preface, etc., by Sir Egerton Brydges.

The edition contained about 100 copies.

15. Anacreon, Bion, and Moschus, with Other Translations. By Thomas Stanley, Esq. First Printed 1651. A New Edition, with a Preface, Critical and Biographical. London: From the Private Press of Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown. Printed by T. Davison, Whitefriars. 1815. Pp. xxvii. 276. crown 8vo.

Edited by Sir Egerton Brydges; about 100 copies only.

Pp. 133-276 comprise a large number of “excitations,” by Stanley, upon the authors dealt with in these translations.

16. The Elegies of Propertius, &c. London: H. G. Bohn. 1854. cr. 8vo [Bohn’s Classical Library].

Contains The Kisses of Secundus, translated into English verse by T. Stanley.

17. The Poems of Catullus, &c. London: H. G. Bohn. 1854. cr. 8vo [Bohn’s Classical Library].

Contains The Vigil of Venus, translated into English Verse by T. Stanley.

18.[106] Anacreon: with Thomas Stanley’s Translation. Edited by A. H. Bullen. Illustrated by J. R. Weguelin. London: Lawrence & Bullen, 16 Henrietta Street, Covent Garden. MDCCCXCIII. 4to. Collation: Pp. xxix. 224. Contains twelve photogravures. 1000 copies only were printed for England and America.

[It may be here noted that many of Stanley’s Verse-Translations appeared in his History of Philosophy, of which there are many editions, dating from 1655 to 1743, the best edition of which is said to be the latter.]

19. Anacreon, Translated by Thomas Stanley. With a Preface and Notes by A. H. Bullen, and Illustrations by J. R. Weguelin. London: A. H. Bullen, 47, Great Russell Street, W.C. 1906. Pp. xxiv+92.

20. Thomas Stanley: His Original Lyrics, Complete, in their Collated Readings of 1647, 1651, 1657. With an Introduction, Textual Notes, A List of Editions, An Appendix of Translations, and a Portrait. Edited by L. I. Guiney, J. R. Tutin, Hull, 1907.

Collation. Titles, Dedication, Contents, and Prefatory Note, pp. i-xxi; Original Lyrics, pp. 1-69; Appendix of Translations, pp. 71-83; Textual Notes, pp. 85-100; List of Editions, pp. 101-105; Index to First Lines, pp. 107-110.

The present edition.



A kiss I begg’d, and thou didst join [Secundus]76
A Phosphor ’mongst the living late wert thou [Plato]81
A small well-gotten stock, and country seat [E. Cat[alectis] Vet[erum] Poet[arum.]]81
Alas! alas! thou turn’st in vain [Guarini]72
As in the crystal-centre of the sight [Fairfax]89
As when some brook flies from itself away [Montalvan]75
Ask the empress of the night26
Beauty, thy harsh imperious chains37
Beauty, whose soft magnetic chains38
Cast, Chariessa, cast that glass away41
Cast off, for shame, ungentle maid67
Celinda, by what potent art45
Chide, chide no more away32
Come, my Dear, whilst youth conspires [Casone]73
Dear, back my wounded heart restore57
Dear, fold me once more in thine arms10
Dear, urge no more the killing cause48
Delay! Alas, there cannot be43
Doris, I that could repel50
Draw near61
[108]‘Fair is Alexis,’ I no sooner said [Plato]82
Fair rebel to thyself and Time [Ronsard]71
Faith, ’tis not worth thy pains and care31
Far from thy dearest self, the scope [Tasso]76
Favonius, the milder breath o’ th’ Spring33
Five oxen, grazing in a flowery mead [Plato]83
Fletcher, whose fame no age can ever waste15
Fool! take up thy shaft again43
Foolish Lover, go and seek28
He whose active thoughts disdain52
I go, dear Saint, away29
I languish in a silent flame [De Voiture]73
I must no longer now admire62
I prithee let my heart alone65
I will not trust thy tempting graces64
I yield, dear enemy, nor know55
If we are one, dear Friend! why shouldst thou be22
Love! what tyrannic laws must they obey30
Madam! the blushes I betray16
My sickly breath [Guarini]72
No, I will sooner trust the wind65
No, no, poor blasted Hope!1
Not that by this disdain44
Now will I a lover be [Anacreon]79
O turn away those cruel eyes69
Old Hecuba, the Trojan matron’s, years [Plato]82
On this swelling bank, once proud9
On this verdant lotus laid [Anacreon]80
Pale envious Sickness, hence! no more35
[109]Rebellious fools that scorn to bow58
Roses, in breathing forth their scent37
See how this ivy strives to twine12
See how this violet, which before27
See, the Spring herself discloses [Anacreon]79
Since every place you bless, the name6
Since Fate commands me hence, and I59
So fair Aurora doth herself discover24
Stay, fairest Chariessa, stay and mark13
Such icy kisses, anchorites that live25
Suckling, whose numbers could invite22
That I might ever dream thus! that some power1
That kiss which last thou gav’st me, stole60
That wise philosopher who had design’d20
The air which thy smooth voice doth break50
The lazy hours move slow10
The silkworm, to long sleep retir’d62
The stars, my Star! thou view’st: heaven I would be [Plato]81
These papers, Chariessa, let thy breath14
Think not, pale lover, he who dies25
Thou best of Friendship, Knowledge and of Art!17
Thou that both feel’st and dost admire2
Thou whose sole name all passions doth comprise13
Though ’gainst me Love and Destiny conspire7
Though when I lov’d thee thou wert fair51
’Tis no kiss my Fair bestows [Secundus]77
To Archaeanassa, on whose furrow’d brow [Plato]82
Torment of absence and delay [Montalvan]75
Vex no more thyself and me [Anacreon]78
Wert thou by all affections sought68
Wert thou yet fairer than thou art [‘Mr. W. M.’]98
What busy cares too timely born4
What if Night34
[110]When, cruel fair one, I am slain46
When, dearest Beauty, thou shalt pay63
When, dearest Friend, thy verse doth re-inspire18
When deceitful lovers lay29
When I lie burning in thine eye42
When on thy lip my soul I breathe49
When Phœbus saw a rugged bark beguile [Marino]74
When thou thy pliant arms dost wreathe [Secundus]77
Whence took the diamond worth? the borrow’d rays2
Why thy passion should it move36
With a whip of lilies, Love [Anacreon]78
Within the covert of a shady grove [Plato]82
Wits that matur’d by time have courted praise21
Wrong me no more39
Yet ere I go66
You earthly souls that court a wanton flame54
You that unto your mistress’ eyes56

Printed by Morrison & Gibb Limited, Edinburgh

Transcriber’s Notes

  1. Obvious punctuation errors outside of the poems have been fixed without further note, but punctuation within poems remains as printed.
  2. As an aid to the reader this text uses a different style for references to the author’s textual notes than the printed edition used.

    References to the notes are marked within the text as [number:number] and within the textual notes section as "number:number." For example, [2:1] represents the first note in the second poem that has notes; [3:2] represents the second note in the third poem that has notes.

  3. Line numbers in the poems are as printed in the original book, even in cases where they may seem inconsistent.
  4. Page 36: The reference to note 2 (29:2) in ‘To Celia’ (at line 10) was missing and has been added.
  5. Page 79: In IV. The Combat,’ the line numbering should have probably restarted at 1, rather than continuing from III. The printed numbering has been retained.
  6. Page 81: The reference to note 2 (66:2) in ‘V.’ (at line 13) was missing has been added.
  7. Page 100: The reference in note 66:1 to line 5 of No. IV has been corrected to refer to No. V instead.
  8. Page 100: The note numbers in the notes for ‘Translations from Anacreon’ were inconsistent with the numbers actually used in the poems, and have been corrected.
  9. The book has a number of inconsistencies in spelling, word usage, or style of citation in the List of Editions, all of which have been retained. Some of them are noted here:
    • church yard, church-yard, and churchyard
    • Princes-Arms and Princes Armes
    • St. Pauls and S. Pauls
    • Fo. and Fo.
    • re-inspire and reinspire
    • James Allestrey and James Allestry