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commission, till the prince, coming personally to the siege of Middleburgh, gave him an opportunity of displaying his zeal and courage, when the prince rewarded him with 300 guelders beyond his regular pay, and a promise of future promotion. He was, however, surprised by 3000 Spaniards, when commanding, under Captain Sheffield, 500 Englishmen lately landed; but he retired in good order at night, under the walls of Leyden. The jealousy of the Dutch was now openly displayed by their refusing to open their gates ; and our military bard and his band were, in consequence, made captives. At the expiration of twelve days his men were released; and the officers, after an imprisonment of four months, were sent back to England. Gascoigne then betook himself once more to Gray's Inn, and thence, in 1575, to “his poore house at Walthamstowe,” where he collected and published his poems; having previously printed the Complaynt of Phylomene (begun as early as 1562), and written a satire called the „Steele Glasse. In the summer of this year he accompanied Queen Elizabeth in her progress, and supplied part of the entertainment at Kenilworth Castle and at Woodstock. He is supposed to have died in 1578, at Walthamstow. Gascoigne's works are thus enumerated in the title-page to the collective edition of them printed in 1587: “ The Pleasauntest Workes of George Gascoigne, Esquyre ; newlye compyled into one volume ; that is to say : his Flowers, Hearbes, Weedes; the Fruites of Warre; the Comedy called Supposes; the Tragedy of Jocasta ; the Steele Glasse:; the Complaynt of Phylomene; the Story of Ferdinando Jeronimi; and the Pleasure at Kenilworth Castle.” To the edition of his Steele Glasse printed in 1576 is prefixed the author's portrait, in armour, with a ruff and a large beard. On his right hang a musket and bandoliers ; on his left stands an ink-horn and some books; and underneath is the byno-means diffident motto, Tam Marti quam Mercurio.
(Circa 1530.) Alexander Scot, a contemporary and friend of Alexander Montgomery, appears to have lived at Dalkeith, to have been a layman (one of his odes is addressed to his wife), and a friend to the Reformation. His poems, a large number of which are printed in the collections of Lord Hailes, Allan Ramsay, and Mr. Sibbald, may be classed among the most elegant metrical effusions of the sixteenth century. They are generally founded on subjects of an amatory kind, and discover a considerable degree of fancy and harmony. His lyric measures are chosen with sufficient skill; and his language, when compared with that of contemporary poets, will be found to possess an uncommon share of terseness and precision. The longest of his productions is Ane Newe-Yere Gift to the Quene, when sche came first hame; which is less valuable for its poetry than for the light it reflects on an important era of Scottish history. His Justing between William Adamson and John Syme is an imitation of Christe's Kirk on the Green; and although inferior to the admirable original, is distinguished by many happy strokes of humorous description. Several of the Scottish poets have exercised their satirical powers on subjects of this kind. Scot's Justing is undoubtedly superior to the similar attempts of Dunbar and Lindsay.
(Circa 1530.) This poet, descended from a family of considerable note in Dorsetshire, was a younger son of Nicholas Turberville of Whitchurch,
left the University without taking a degree, and resided for some time in one of the inns of court. He appears to have accumulated a stock of classical learning, and to have been well acquainted with modern languages. He formed his ideas of poetry partly on the classics, and partly on the study of the Italian school. His poetical pursuits, however, did not interfere with more important business; and his abilities recommended him to the post of secretary to Thomas Randolph, who was appointed Queen Elizabeth's ambassador to the court of Russia.
While in this situation he wrote three poetical epistles to as many friends,—Edward Davies, Edmund Spenser (not the poet), and Parker, -describing the manners of the Russians. After his return he was much courted as a man of accomplished education and manners; and the first edition of his Songs and Sonnets, published in 1567, seems to have added considerably to his fame.
His other works were translations of the Heroical Epistles of Ovid, and of the Eclogues of B. Mantuan. Another very rare production, although twice printed, is entitled Tragical Tales translated by Turberville, in time of his troubles, out of sundrie Italians, with the argument and l'envoye to each tale. What his troubles were, we are not told. To the latter edition of these tales were annexed, Epitaphs and Sonnets, with some other broken pamphlettes and epistles, sent to certain of his friends in England, at his being in Moscovia.
Our author was living in 1594, and in great esteem ; but we have no account of his death. His Essays, politic and moral, were published in 1608, together with the Booke of Falconrye and Hawking.
THOMAS SACKVILLE, LORD BUCKHURST,
EARL OF DORSET.
(Circa 1530-1607.) Thomas, son and heir to Mr. Richard Sackville, chancellor and sub-treasurer of the Exchequer, &c., was born about 1530, at Buckhurst, in the parish of Witham, Sussex, the seat of that ancient family. He was from childhood distinguished for wit and manly behaviour. From domestic tuition he was removed to Hart Hall (now Hertford College), Oxford ; spending some time also at Cambridge, where he became a master of arts. At both universities he was celebrated as a Latin and English poet; and he carried THOMAS SACKVILLE, EARL OF DORSET.
his love of poetry, which he seems to have almost solely cultivated, to the Inner Temple. Here he composed, with the assistance of Thomas Norton, and for the honour and entertainment of his fellow-students, the play of Gorboduc, the first ascertained specimen in our language of a heroic tale written in blank verse, divided into acts and scenes, and clothed in all the formalities of a regular tragedy. It was first exhibited in the great hall of the Inner Temple, by the students of that society, as part of the grand entertainment of a grand Christmas, on the 18th of January, 1561. It was never intended for the press; but being surreptitiously and very carelessly printed in 1565, an exact edition, with the consent and under the inspection of the authors, appeared in 1571, under the title of “The Tragedie of Ferrex and Porrex :” whereas the edition of 1565 was entitled “The Tragedie of Gorboduc; whereof three actes were wrytten by Thomas Nortone, and the two laste by Thomas Sackvyle.” “The tragedy,” writes Hazlitt, “as the first in our language, is certainly a curiosity, and in other respects it is also remarkable ; though, perhaps, enough has been said about it. As a work of genius, it may be set down as nothing, for it contains hardly a memorable line or passage ; as a work of art, and the first of its kind attempted in the language, it may be considered as a monument of the taste and skill of the authors. Its merit is confined to the regularity of the plot and metre — to its general good sense, and strict attention to common decorum. If the poet has not stamped the peculiar genius of his age upon this first attempt, it is not an inconsiderable proof of strength of mind and conception, sustained by its own sense of propriety alone, to have so far anticipated the taste of succeeding times as to have avoided any glaring offence against rules and modes which had no existence in his day: or perhaps a truer solution might be, that there were as yet no examples of a more ambiguous and irregular kind to tempt him to err; and as he had not the impulse or resources within himself to strike out a new path, he merely attended with modesty and caution to the classical models with which, as a scholar, he was well acquainted. The language of the dialogue is clear, unaffected, and intelligible, without the smallest difficulty even to this day. It has no figures nor no fantasies' to which the most fastidious critic can object; but the dramatic power is nearly none at all. It is written expressly to set forth the dangers and mischiefs that arise from the division of sovereign power; and the several speakers dilate upon the different views of the subject in turn, like clever schoolboys set to compose a thesis, or declaim upon the fatal consequences of ambition, and the uncertainty of human affairs. The author, in the end, declares for the doctrine of passive
obedience and non-resistance; a doctrine which, indeed, was seldom questioned at that time of day.”
In the year 1559 had appeared the first edition of The Mirroure for Magistrates ; “wherein may be seen, by example of others, with how grevous plages Vices are punished, and how frayle and unstable worldlie Prosperitie is founde, even of those whom Fortune seemeth most highlie to favoure.” The connexion of our author with this work commenced only with the second edition, in 1563, to which he 'contributed that beautifully descriptive and highly-polished poem called The Induction, which served to envelop all the other contributors in the shade of secondary characters. It is a poem which sometimes reminds one of Chaucer, and at others seems like an anticipation, in some degree, both of the measure and manner of Spenser.
The high birth and ample patrimony of our author soon advanced him to important situations and employments. His eminent accomplishments and abilities having acquired the confidence and esteem of Queen Elizabeth, the poet was soon lost in the statesman, and negotiations and embassies extinguished for a time the milder ambitions of the muse. In the fourth and fifth year of Queen Mary, his name is found on the parliamentary lists, and again in the fifth of Elizabeth. Not long after, he went abroad to travel, and was detained some time prisoner at Rome, but was liberated, and returned to take possession of a patrimonial inheritance which devolved to him in 1566. He was knighted by the Duke of Norfolk, in the queen's absence, in 1567, and at the same time promoted to the dignity of the peerage, by the title of Baron Buckhurst. In 1573 his royal mistress sent him ambassador to Charles IX. of France, where he was treated with all due distinction. In 1574 he sat as one of the peers on the trial of Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk, at which time he was also in the Privy Council. He was nominated one of the commissioners for the trial of Mary Queen of Scots; and although it does not appear he was present at her condemnation at Fotheringay Castle, yet, after the confirmation of her sentence, he was the person made choice of, on account of his address and tenderness of disposition, to bear the unhappy tidings to her, and to see the sentence carried into execution. He was next employed on an embassy to the States-General, to accommodate a difference in regard to some remonstrances made against the conduct of Lord Leicester. This commission he executed with fidelity and honour; but he incurred the displeasure of Lord Burleigh, whose influence with the queen occasioned him not only to be recalled, but to be confined to his house for nine months. On the death of Lord Leicester, in 1588, his interest at court was renewed. He was made a knight of the Garter; was joined with Lord Burleigh