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that he recommended some trivial alterations in them while they were yet in rehearsal ;---or that their real owners being carefully concealed, these productions were imputed to him as to one whose reputation was best able to promote their sale, or support their credit with an audience. The necessity of sheltering the plays of unpopular poets under borrowed names, was, I believe, at that period unknown, as well as the more malicious practice of fathering unsuccessful scenes on persons by whom they were never written. Neither was it then customary (as since) for distinguished authors to lend or sell their names, or to permit (like some Italian artists) the scholar to vend his paintings for those of the master. It seems, however, that it was not unusual for booksellers to issue out the works of one man under the nominal sanction of another. Hleywood, in his preface to the Brazen Age, complains, that a noted pedagogue had impudently stolen from him certain rersions of Ovid, and published them as his own. Shirley likewise claims a play which was sent into the world as Fletcher's.32 I know in deed that our ancient stationers were not very scrupulous in this particular.33 Anticipated by their rivals in procuring copies of some of Shakespeare's genuine labours, by way of retaliation they might have placed his name before the next tragedies or comedies that fell into their hands. Part of this indeed is but conjecture. I have merely started the subject, and leave it to be pursued by literary antiquarians, whose sagacity and experience are greater than mine; repeating only, that Locrine and the Puritan were possibly the works of two different academics; that Oldcastle and Cromwell (aş Dr Farmer observes) might be ranked among the almost innumerable dramas of Heywood; and that the Prodigul, having nothing characteristic in its composition, may, with equal likelihood, be ascribed to a pen distinct from all the rest. Here, however, I should observe, that Locrine, Cromwell, and the Puritan, were not publicly ascribed to our author till the appearance of the folio in 1664. What has been previously urged with relation to the Two Noble Kinsmen, Pericles, and the Yorkshire Tragedy, is submitted to every reader with that total diffidence which should always accompany imperfect knowledge, and would by no means disgrace even opinions built on more solid grounds than those of bare probability.

I cannot conclude this note without observing, how fortunate a circumstance it is for any society, and especially for one immediately subservient to learning, when an intelligent man is placed by the chance of rotation at its head. To the careful researches and liberal curiosity of Mr Lockyer Davis, the present Master of the Stationers' Company, we owe a recent discovery of the greater part of the first volume of their records, which was long supposed to have been lost through negligence, or to have been destroyed in the fire of London. The numberless dates of our earliest interludes, plays, ballads, &c. which will hereafter be ascertained by the aid of these annals, cannot fail to rank the name of the gentleman already mentioned among those of the best benefactors to the history of ancient English literature. Many of our critical or biographical performances may also in time to come be indebted to the warmth of his zeal, and the success of his investigations." At least I am sure, that the labour of turning over the memoirs which he has rescued from oblivion, will be considerably alleviated, should his successors entrust them to future authors, with a readiness and politeness like his own.--STEEVENS.

32 These particulars escaped me till after the last edition of Shakespeare was printed off. See note on Pericles. p. 176.

33 I affirm this on repeated inspection of their books, in which both their frequent frauds and invasions of each other's property, and their respective fines on discovery, are minutely recorded. The names of cight of the printers of the quarto editions of our author's plays, appear on the list of these delinquents.

GEORGE A GREENE,

THE

PINNER OF WAKEFIELD.

The author of this Play is unknown. Philips and Winstanley ascribe it to John Heywood, author of the Four P's, and other pieces which bear not the least resemblance to the present performance. The story on which it is grounded seems to have its foundation in the particular traditions of the town of Wakefield: that part which relates to Robin Hood is contained in one of the popular Bek lads concerning that celebrated outlaw, printed in the first volume of Evun's Collection of Old Bat lads, p. 99. This Ballad is mentioned by Drayton, in his Poly-olbion, Song the Twentieth-eighth :

“ It chanced she in her course on Kirkbey cast her eye,
Where merry Robin Hood, that honest tbief, doth lie;
Beholding fitly too before how Wakefield stood,
She doth not only think of lusty Robin Hood,
But of his merry man, the Pindar of the town
Of Wakefield, George a Green, whose fames so far are blown
For their so valiant fight, that every free man's song
Can tell you of the same, quoth she be talk'd on long,
For ye were merry lads, and those were merry days;" &c.

And Richard Braithwaite, in the Strappado for the Devil, 1615, 8vo. p. 205, says :

At least such places labour to make known,
As former times have honour'd with renown.
So by thy true relation 't may appear
They are no others now, than as they were
Ever esteemd by auntient times records,
Which shall be shadow'd briefly in few words.
The first whereof that I intend to show,
Is merry Wakefield, and her Pindar too :
Which Fame hath blaz'd with all that did belong,
Unto that Towne in wany gladsome song :
The Pindar's valour, and how firm he stood
In the lownes defence, gainst the rebel Robin Hood;
How stoutly he behaved himselfe, and would,
In spite of is obin bring his horse to th' fold ;
His many Maygames which were to be seene,
Yeerely presented upon Wakefield greene,
W bere lovely Jugge, and lustie T'ib would go,
To see Tom lively turne upon the toe;
Hob, Lob, and Crowde the fidler would be there,
And many more I will not speake of here :

Good God! how glad hath been this hart of mine,
To see that towne, which hath in former time
So flourish'd and so gloried in her name,
Famous by the Pindar who first raised the same;
Yea, I have paced ore that greene and ore,
And th' more I saw't, I tooke delight the more ;
For where we take contentment in a place,
A whole daies walke seemes as a cinque pace.
Unto thy taske, my muse, and now make knowne
The jolly shoo-maker of Bradford towne,
His gentle craft so raised in former time,
By princely journey-men his discipline,
Where he was wont with passengers to quaffe,
But suffer none to carry up their staffe
Upon their shoulders, whilst they past through town,
For if they did, he soon should beat them downo.
(So valiant was the Souter), and from hence,
"Twixt Robin Hood and him grew th' difference ;
Which, cause it is by most stage poets writ,
For brevity, I thought good to omit."

DRAMATIS PERSONIE.

EDWARD, King of England.
James, King of Scotland.
Earl of KENDALL.
Lord WARWICK.
Lord BONFIELD.
Lord Humes.
Sir GILBERT ARMSTRONG.
Sir NichoLAS MANNERING.
GEORGE A GREENE.
Old MUSGROVE,
Young CUDDIE, his Son.
Mr GRIME.

Bettris, his Daughter,
Robin Hood.
JENKIN, a Clown.
Wily,
Much, the Miller's Son.
Maid Marion.
SCARLET,
A Justice.
A Townsman.
Joun.
Jane A BARLEY.
A Shoemaker, Solliers, Blessengers, &c.

THE

PINNER1 OF WAKEFIELD.

Enter the Earl of Kendall, with him the Lord | And all my troops, even to my basest groom,

Bonfield, Sir Gilbert ARMSTRONG, and Courage and welcome; for the day is ours. Joun,

Our cause is good, it is for the land's avail :

Then let us fight and die for England's good. Ken. Welcome to Bradford, martial gentlemen, Omnes. We will, my lord. Lord Bonfield, and sir Gilbert Armstrong both, Ken. As I am. llenry Momford, Kendall's earl,

* Pinner, or Pindar ;-The keeper of the Pinfolds belonging to the common fields about Wakefield. Junius, in bis Etymologicon, voce Pende, says: Pende Includere ch. ab A. S. pendan pyodan idem sig. dificante. “ Hinc pinder pinner. Qui pecora ultra fines vagantia septo includit.” Mr Steevens observes, that the figure of this rustic hero is still preserved on a sign at the bottom of Gray's-Inn-Lane. VOL. I.

SK

You honour me with this assent of yours;

Enter the Justice, a Townsman, GEORGE A 2 And here upon my sword I make protest, For to relieve the poor, or die myself.

GREENE, and Sir NICHOLAS MANNERING,

with his commission. And know, my lords, that James, the king of Scots, Wars hard upon the borders of this land:

Just. M. Mannering, stand aside, whilst we Here is his post; say, John Taylor,

confer What news with king James ?

What is best to do, townsmen of Wakefield: John. War, my lord, I tell; and good news I | The earl of Kendall here hath sent for victuals; trow;

And in aiding him, we shew ourselves
For king James vows to meet you the twenty-sixth No less than traitors to the king;
Of this month, God willing; marry doth he, sir.

Therefore let me hear, townsmen,
Ken. My friends, you see what we have to win. What is your consents.
Well, John, commend me to king James, and tell Towns. Even as you please, we are all content.
him,

Just. Then M. Mannering we are resolved I will meet him the twenty-sixth of this month, Man. As how ? And all the rest; and so farewell. [Erit Joun. Just. Marry, sir, thus. Bonfield, why stand'st thou as a man in dumps ? We will send the earl of Kendall no victuals, Courage; for if I win, I'll make thee duke. Because he is a traitor to the king, I Heory Momford will be king myself,

And in aiding him we shew ourselves no less. And I will make thee duke of Lancaster,

Man. Why, men of Wakefield, are you waren And Gilbert Armstrong lord of Doncaster.

mad, Bon. Nothing, my lord, makes me amazed at all, That present danger cannot whet your wits, But that our soldiers find our victuals scant. Wisely to make provision of yourselves ? We must make bavock of those country swains ; The earl is thirty thousand men strong in power, For so will the rest tremble and be afraid, And what town soever bim resist, And humbly send provision to your camp.

He lays it fat and level with the ground : Gil. My lord Bonfield gives good advice; Ye silly men, you seek your own decay: They make a scorn and stand upon the king : Therefore send my lord such provision as he So what is brought is sent from them perforce;

wants, Ask Mannering else.

So he will spare your town, and come no nearer Ken. What sayest thou, Mannering?

Wakefield than he is. Man. Wheu as I shewed your high commission,

Just. Master Mannering, you have your answer; They made this answer,

You
may

he

gone. Only to send provision for your horses.

Man. Well, Woodroffe, for so I guess is tby Ken. Well, hie thee to Wakefield, bid the town

name, To send me all provision that I want;

I'll make thee curse thy 3 overthwart denial; Lest I, like martial Tamberlaine, lay waste And all that sit upon the bench this day Their bordering countries, leaving none

Shall rue the hour they have withstood my lord's Alive that contradicts my commission.

Commission.
Man. Let me alone, my lord, I'll make them Just. Do thy worst, we fear thee not.
Vail their p!unies; for whosoever he be,

Man. See you these seals ? before you pass tho The proudest knight, or justice, or other, that

town, gainsayeth

I will have all things my lord doth want, Your word, I clap him fast, to make the rest to

lu spite of you. fear.

Geo. Proud dapper Jack, vail bonnet to the Ken. Do so, Nick ! hie thee thither presently,

bench And let us hear of thee to-morrow.

That represents

the
person

of the king; Man. Will you not remove, my lord ? Or, sirrah, I'll lay thy head before thy feet.

Ken. No, I will lie at Bradford all this night, Mar. Why, who art thou?
And all the next. Come, Bonfield, let us go, Geo. Why, I am George a Greene,
And listen out some bonny lasses here.

True liegeman to my king,
[Ereunt. I who scorns that men of such esteem as these,

2

And here upon my sword I make protest :- It was formerly common to swear upon the sword; that is, upon the cross which the old swords always had upon the hilt. Of this custom many instances are quoted by Dr Farmer and Mr Steevens, in their Notes on Hamlet, A.I. S. 5.

Again, in Your five Gallants, by Middleton, A. 4:4" Sweare on this sword then to set spurs to your horse, not to looke back, to give no markes to any passenger.'

3 Overth wart denial :-So in Erasmus's Praise of Folie, 15,49, Sign, C 2:“ hat when the Gods are sette at bankette, he plaieth the jester, now wyth hys lymphaultynge, now with his skuflinge, and now kvith his overthwarte woords to provoke them all to laughter." Laphues und his Englund, p. 57:" As one to young to understande, or obstinate to overthwart,"

Should brook the braves of any traitorous squire. Although I have rent his large commission,
You of the bench, and you my fellow-friends, Yet of curtesy I have sent all his seals
Neighbours, we subjects all unto the king; Back again by you.
We are English born, and therefore Edward's Man. Well, sir, I will do your errand. [Erit.
friends,

Geo. Now let hiin tell his lord, that bre hath
Vow'd unto him, even in our mothers' womb, Spoke with George a Greene, right Pinner
Our minds to God, our hearts uuto our king ; Of merry Wakefield town, that hath physic for a
Our wealth, our homage, and our carcases,

fool, Be all king Edward's. Then, sirrah, we have Pills for a traitor that doth wrong his sovereign. Nothing left for traitors, but our swords,

Are you content with this that I have done? Whetied to bathe them in your bloods,

Just. Ay, content, George; And die against you, before we send you any

For highly bast thou honour'd Wakefield town, victuals.

In cutting of proud Manuering so short. Just. Well spoken, George a Greene!

Come, thou shalt be my welcome quest to-day; Towns. Pray let George a Greene speak for us. For well thou hast deserved reward and favour. Geo. Sirrah, you get no victuals bere,

[Ereunt. Not if a hoof of beef would save your lives. Man. Fellow, I stand amazed at thy presump

Enter old Musgrove, and young Cuddle, tion.

his Son. Why, what art thou that darest gainsay my lord, Cuddie. Now, gentle father, list unto thy son, Knowing his mighty puissance and his stroke? And for my mother's love, that erst was blythe Why, my friend, I come not barely of myself; And bonny in thine eye, grant one petition For see, I have a large commission.

That I shall demand. Geo. Let me see it, sirrah. Whose seals be Old Mus. What is that, my Cuddic? these?

Cuddie. Father, you know Man. This is the earl of Kendall's seal at arins; The ancient enmity of late between the Musgroves This lord Charnel Bonfield's;

And the wily Scots, whereof they have oath, And this sir Gilbert Armstrong's.

Not to leave one alive that s strides a launce. Geo. I tell thee, sirrah, did good king Edward's father, you are old, and waining age unto the

grave : Seal a commission against the king his father, Old William Musgrove, which whilom was thought Thus would I tear it in despite of bim,

The bravest horseman in all Westnyorland, [He tears the commission. Is weak, and forced to stay his arm upon a staff, Being traitor to my sovereign.

That erst could wield alaunce. Man. What! bast thou torn my lord's com- Then, gentle father, resign the hold to me; mission?

Give arins to youth, and honour unto age. Thou shalt rue it, and so shall all Wakefield. Mus. Avaunt, false-hearted boy! my joints do Geo. What, are you in choler? I will give you

quake pills

Eren with anguish of thy very words. To cool your stomach. Seest thou these seals ? Hath William Musgrove seen an hundred Now, by my father's soul, which was a yeoman, Have I been feared and dreaded of the Scois, When he was alive, * eat them, or eat

That, when they heard my name in any road, My dagger's point, proud squire.

They fled away, and posted thence amain? Mun. But thou doest but jest, I hope?

No, Cuddie, no: thus resolve I, Geo. Sare that shall you see, before we two Here have I lived, and here will Musgrove die. part.

[Erennt. Man. Well, and there be no remedy, so

Enter Lord BoNFIELD, Sir GILBERT ApmGeorge, One is gone; I pray thee, no more now.

STRONG, M. Grime, and Bettris his Daugh

ter. Geo. O sir, it one be good, the others cannot hurt.

Bon. Now, gentle Griine, god a mercy for our So, sir, now you may go tell the earl of Kendall,

good cheer,

son

years?

4 Eat them, &c.--.This incident bears so near a resemblance to a story related of Robert Greene, that it probably was taken from it. “ Had he lived, Gabriel, and thou shouldst so unartificially and odiously libelled against hiin as thou hast done, he would have thee an example of ignominy to all ages that are to come, and driven thee lo eate thy owne booke butterid, as I sawe him make an appariter once in a tavern eate his citation, ware and all, very handsomely serv'd twixt two dishes."

Nash's Apologie of Pierce Pennelesse, Ato. 1593. In the Play of Sir John Oldcastle, the Sumner is compelled to eat his citation in like manner.

Strides a launce :-i, e. not to leave even a cbild of them alive, one who equilat in grundine longa. Erst :-i, e, once, in former times. S.

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