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and do compare them with other, whiche diete, and kepyng of his hauke from all lacked or had nat so moche of doctrine. sickenes, also how he can reclaime her and Verily they be ferre from good raison, in prepare her to flyght. And to suche a cooke myne opinion, whiche couaite to haue their or fauconer, whom he findeth expert, he children goodly'in stature, stronge, deliuer, spareth nat to gyue moche wages with other well synging, wherin trees, beastes, fysshes, bounteous rewardes. But of Schole and byrdes, be nat only with them equall, maister, to whom he will committe his childe, but also ferre do excede them. And to be fedde with lernynge and instructed in connynge, wherby onely man excelleth all
vertue, whose lyfe shall be the principall other creatures in erthe, they reiecte, and monument of his name and honour, he neuer accounte unworthy to be in their children. maketh further enquirie but where he may What unkinde appetite were it to desyre to haue a schole maister; and with howe litel be father rather of a pece of flesshe, that charge; and if one be perchance founden, can onely meue and feele, than of a childe well lerned, but he will nat take paynes to that shuide have the perfecte fourme of a teache without he may haue a great salary, man? What so perfectly expresseth a man he than speketh nothing more, or els saith, as doctrine? Diogines the philosopher seing What shall so moche wages be gyuen to a one without lernynge syt on a stone, sayde schole maister whiche wolde kepe me two to them that were with him, beholde where seruantes? to whom maye be saide these one stone sytteth on an other; whiche wordes, that by his sonne being wel lerned wordes, well considered and tried, shall ap- he shall receiue more commoditie and also pere to contayne in it wonderfull matter for worship than by the seruice of a hundred the approbation of doctrine, wherof a wyse cokes and fauconers.
maye accumulate ineuitable argu- The thirde cause of this hyndrance is negmentes, whiche I of necessite, to auoide ligence of parentes, whiche I do specially tediousnes, must nedes passe ouer at this note in this poynt; there haue bene diuers, tyme.
as well gentillmen as of the nobilitie, that The seconde occasion wherfore gentylmens deliting to haue their sonnes excellent in children seldome haue sufficient lernynge is lernynge haue prouided for them connynge Lauarice. For where theyr parentes wyll nat maysters, who substancially haue taught aduenture to sende them farre out of theyr them gramer, and very wel instructed them propre countrayes, partely for feare of to speake latine elegantly, wherof the pardethe, whiche perchance dare nat approche entes haue taken moche delectation; but them at home with theyr father; partely for whan they haue had of grammer sufficient expence of money, whiche they suppose and be comen to the age of xiiii yeres, and wolde be lesse in theyr owne houses or in a do approche or drawe towarde the astate of village, with some of theyr tenantes or man, whiche age is called mature or ripe, frendes; hauyng seldome any regarde to (wherin nat onely the saide lernyng conthe teacher, whether he be well lerned or tinued by moche experience shal be perfectly ignorant. For if they hiare a schole maister digested, and confirmed in perpetuall reto teche in theyr houses, they chiefely en- membrance, but also more seriouse lernyng quire with howe small a salary he will be contayned in other lyberall sciences, and also contented, and neuer do inserche howe philosophy, wolde than be lerned) the parmoche good lernynge he hath, and howe entes, that thinge nothinge regarding, but amonge well lerned men he is therin es- being suffised that their children can onely temed, usinge therin lasse diligence than in speke latine proprely, or make verses with takynge seruantes, whose seruice is of moche out mater or sentence, they from thens forth lasse importance, and to a good schole mais- do suffre them to liue in idelues, or els, putter is nat in profite to be compared. A ting them to seruice, do, as it were, banisshe gentilman, er he take a cooke in to his them from all vertuous study or exercise of seruice, he wyll firste diligently examine that whiche they before lerned; so that we hym, howe many sortes of meates, potages, may beholde diuers yonge gentill men, who and sauces, he can perfectly make, and howe in their infancie and childehode were wonwell he can season them, that they may be dred at for their aptness to lerning and bothe pleasant and nourishynge; yea and if prompt speakinge of elegant latine, whiche it be but a fauconer, he wyll scrupulously nowe, beinge men, nat onely haue forgotten enquire what skyll he hath in feedyng, called their congruite, (as in the commune worde),
and unneth can speake one hole sentence in true latine, but, that wars is, hath all lernynge in derision, and in skorne therof wyll, of wantonnesse, speake the moste barberously that they can imagine.
Nowe some man will require me to shewe myne opinion if it be necessary that gentilmen shulde after the age of xiiii yeres continue in studie. And to be playne and trewe therein, I dare affirme that, if the elegant speking of latin be nat added to other doctrine, litle frute may come of the tonge; sens latine is but a naturall speche, and the frute of speche is wyse sentence, whiche is gathered and made of sondry lernynges.
And who that hath nothinge but langage only may be no more praised than a popiniay, a pye, or a stare, whan they speke featly. There be many nowe a dayes in famouse scholes and uniuersities whiche be so moche gyuen to the studie of tonges onely, that whan they write epistles, they seme to the reder that, like to a trumpet, they make a soune without any purpose, where unto men do herken more for the noyse than for any delectation that therby is meued. Wherefore they be moche abused that suppose eloquence to be only in wordes or coulours of Rhetorike, for, as Tulli saith, what is so furiouse or mad a thinge as a vaine soune of wordes of the best sort and most'ornate, contayning neither connynge nor sentence? Undoubtedly very eloquence is in euery tonge where any mater or acte done or to be done is expressed in wordes clene, propise, ornate, and comely: whereof sentences be so aptly compact that they by a vertue inexplicable do drawe unto them the mindes and consent of the herers, they beinge therwith either perswaded, mened, or to delectation induced. Also euery man is nat an oratour that can write an epistle or a flatering oration in latin: where of the laste, (as god helpe me,) is to moche used. For a right oratour may nat be without a moche better furniture. Tulli saienge that to him belongeth the explicating or unfoldinge of sentence, with a great estimation in gyuing counsaile concerninge maters of great importaunce, also to him appertaineth the steringe and quickning of people languisshinge or dispeiringe, and to moderate them that be rasshe and unbridled. Wherfore noble autours do affirme that, in the firste infancie of the worlde, men wandring like beastes in woddes and on mountaines, regardinge neither the religion due unto god,
nor the office pertaining unto man, ordred all thing by bodily strength: untill Mercurius (as Plato supposeth) or some other man holpen by sapience and eloquence, by some apt or propre oration, assembled them to geder and perswaded to them what commodite was in mutual conuersation and honest maners. But yet Cornelius Tacitus describeth an oratour to be of more excellent qualities, saynge that, an oratour is he that can or may speke or raison in euery question sufficiently elegantly: and to persuade proprely, accordyng to the dignitie of the thyng that is spoken of, the oportunitie of time, and pleasure of them that be herers. Tulli, before him, affirmed that, a man may nat be an oratour heaped with praise, but if he haue gotten the knowlege of all thynges and artes of greatest importaunce. And howe shall an oratour speake of that thynge that he hath nat lerned? And bicause there may be nothynge but it may happen to come in praise or dispraise, in consultation or iugement, in accusation or defence: thorfore an oratour, by others instruction perfectly furnisshed, may, in euery mater and lernynge, commende or dispraise, exhorte or dissuade, accuse or defende eloquently, as occasion hapneth. Wherfore in as moche as in an oratour is required to be a heape of" all maner of lernyng: whiche of some is called the worlde of science, of other the circle of doctrine, whiche is in one worde of greke Encyclopedia: therfore at this day may be founden but a very few oratours. For they that come in message from princes be, for honour, named nowe oratours, if they be in any degre of worshyp: onely poore men hauyng equall or more of lernyng beyng called messagers. Also they whiche do onely teache rhetorike, whiche is the science wherby is taught an artifyciall fourme of speykng, wherin is the power to persuade, moue, and delyte, or by that science onely do speke or write, without any adminiculation 1 of other sciences, ought to be named rhetoriciens, declamatours, artificiall spekers, (named in Greeke Logodedali), or any other name than oratours. Semblably they that make verses, expressynge therby none other lernynge but the craft of versifyeng, be nat of auncient writers named poetes, but onely called versifyers. For the name of a poete, wherat nowe, (specially in this realme,) men haue suche indignation, that they use onely poetes and poetry in the contempte of elo
1 prop, support
quence, was in auncient tyme in hygh esti- after a semblable signification, and the permation: in so moche that all wysdome was sones were called gentilmen, more for the supposed to be therin included, and poetry remembraunce of their vertue and benefite, was the first philosophy that euer than for discrepance of astates. Also it knowen: wherby men from their childhode fortuned by the prouidence of god that of were brought to the raison howe to lyue those good men were engendred good chilwell, lernynge therby nat onely maners and dren, who beinge brought up in vertue, and naturall affections, but also the wonderfull perceiuinge the cause of the aduauncement werkes of nature, mixting serious mater of their progenitours, endeuoured them with thynges that were pleasaunt: as it shall
selfes by imitation of vertue, to be equall to be manifest to them that shall be so fortu
them in honour and autoritie; by good emunate to rede the noble warkes of Plato and lation they retained stille the fauour and Aristotle, wherin he shall fynde the autoritie reuerence of people. And for the goodof poetes frequently alleged: ye and that nesse that proceded of suche generation the more is, in poetes was supposed to be
state of them was called in greke Eugenia, science misticall and inspired, and therfore
whiche signifiethe good kinde or lignage, in latine they were called Vates, which worde
but in a more briefe maner it was after signifyeth as moche as prophetes. And
called nobilitie, and the persones noble, therfore Tulli in his Tusculane questyons
whiche signifieth excellent, and in the analosupposeth that a poete can nat abundantly
gie or signification it is more ample than expresse verses sufficient and complete, or gentill, for it containeth as well all that that his eloquence may flowe without labour
whiche is in gentilnesse, as also the honour wordes wel sounyng and plentuouse, without
or dignitie therefore received, whiche be so celestiall instinction, whiche is also by Plato
annexed the one to the other that they can ratified.
nat be seperate.
It wold be more ouer declared that where
vertue ioyned with great possessions or dig. “THE RANK IS BUT THE GUINEA'S STAMP"
nitie hath longe continued in the bloode or house of a gentilman, as it were an inherit
aunce, there nobilitie is mooste shewed, and [From The Boke of the Governour, 1534]
these noble men be most to be honored; for
as moche as continuaunce in all thinge that Nowe it is to be feared that where maies- is good hath euer preeminence in praise and tie approcheth to excesse, and the mynde is comparison. But yet shall it be necessary obsessed with inordinate glorie, lest pride, to aduertise those persones, that do thinke of al vices most horrible, shuld sodainely that nobilitie may in no wyse be but onely entre and take prisoner the harte of a gen- where men can auaunte them of auncient tilman called to autoritie. Wherfore in as lignage, an auncient robe, or great possesmoche as that pestilence corruptethe all sions, at this daye very noble men do supsences, and makethe them incurable by any pose to be moche errour and folye. Wherof persuation or doctrine, therfore suche per- there is a familiare example, whiche we beare sones from their adolescencie (which is the euer with us, for the bloode in our bodies age nexte to the state of man) oughte to be beinge in youthe warme, pure, and lustie, it persuaded and taughte the true knowlege of is the occasion of beautie, whiche is euery very nobilitie in fourme folowing or like. where commended and loued; but if in age
Fyrst, that in the begynnyng, whan pri- it be putrified, it leseth his praise. And the uate possessions and dignitie were gyuen by goutes, carbuncles, kankers, lepries, and the consent of the people, who than had all other lyke sores and sickenesses, whiche do thinge in commune, and equalitie in degree procede of bloode corrupted, be to all men and condition, undoubtedly they gaue the detestable. one and the other to him at whose vertue And this persuasion to any gentilman, in they meruailed, and by whose labour and whom is apte disposition to very nobilitie, industrie they received a commune benefite, wyll be sufficient to withdrawe hym from as of a commune father that with equall suche vice, wherby he maye empayre his affection loued them. And that promptitude owne estimation, and the good renoume of or redinesse in employinge that benefite was his auncetours. than named in englisshe gentilnesse, as it If he haue an auncient robe lefte by his was in latine benignitas, and in other tonges auncetor, let him consider that if the first
SIR THOMAS ELYOT
owner were of more vertue than he is that whiche he shewed agayne his enemies? If succedeth, the robe beinge worne, it min- it were only in his dignitie, it therwith issheth his praise to them whiche knewe or cessed, and he was (as I mought say) efthaue herde of the vertue of him that firste sones unnoble; and than was his prowesse owed it. If he that weareth it be viciouse, unrewarded, whiche was the chiefe and origiit more detecteth howe moche he is unworthy nall cause of that dignitie: whiche were into weare it, the remembraunce of his noble congruent and without reason. If it were quncetour makynge men to abhorre the re- in his prowesse, prowesse consistynge of proche gyuen by an iuell successour. If the valiant courage and martiall policie, if they firste owner were nat vertuouse, hit con- styll remaine in the persone, he may neuer demneth him that weareth it of moche fol- be without nobilitie, whiche is the commendaishenesse, to glorie in a thinge of so base tion, and as it were, the surname of vertue. estimation, whiche lacking beautie or glosse, The two Romanes called bothe Decii, were can be none ornament to hym that weareth of the base astate of the people, and nat of it, nor honorable remembrance to hym that the great blode of the Romanes, yet for the first owed it.
preseruation of their countray they auowed But nowe to confirme by true histories, to die, as it were in a satisfaction for all that accordynge as I late affirmed, nobilitie their countray. And so with valiant hartes is nat onely in dignitie, auncient lignage, they perced the hoste of their enemies, and nor great reuenues, landes, or possessions. valiuntly fightynge, they died there honorLete yonge gentilmen haue often times toldeably, and by their example gaue suche auto them, and (as it is vulgarely spoken) dacitie and courage to the residue of the layde in their lappes, how Numa Pompilius Romanes, that they employed so their was taken from husbandry, whiche he exer- strengthe agayne their enemies, that with cised, and was made.kynge of Romanes by litle more losse they optained victorie. election of the people. What caused it sup- Ought nat these two Romanes, whiche by pose you but his wisedome and vertue? their deth gaue occasion of victorie, be called whiche in hym was very nobilitie, and that noble? I suppose no man that knoweth nobilitie broughte hym to dignitie. And if what reason is will denie it. that were nat nobilitie, the Romanes were More ouer, we haue in this realme coynes meruailousely abused, that after the dethe which be called nobles; as longe as they be of Romulus their kynge, they hauynge seene to be golde, they be so called. But if amonge them a hundred senatours, whom they be counterfaicted, and made in brasse, Romulus did sette in autoritie, and also the coper, or other vile metal, who for the print blode roiall, and olde gentilmen of the Sa- only calleth them nobles? Wherby it apbynes, who, by the procurement of the wiues pereth that the estimation is in the metall, of the Romanes, beinge their doughters, in- and nat in the printe or figure. And in a habited the citie of Rome, they wolde nat of horse or good grehounde we prayse that we some of them electe a kynge, rather than se in them, and nat the beautje or goodnesse aduance a ploughman and stranger to that of their progenie. Whiche proueth that in autoritie.
estemyng of money and catell we be ladde Quintius hauyng but xxx acres of lande, by wysedome, and in approuynge of man, and beinge ploughman therof, the Senate to whom beastis and money do serue, we be and people of Rome sent a messager to only induced by custome. shewe him that they had chosen him to be Thus I conclude that nobilitie is nat after dictator, whiche was at that time the highest the vulgare opinion of men, but is only the dignitie amonge the Romanes, and for thre prayse and surname of vertue; whiche the monethes had autoritie roiall. Quintius lenger it continueth in a name or lignage, herynge the message, lette his ploughe the more is nobilitie extolled and meruailed stande, and wente in to the citie and pre- at. pared his hoste againe the Samnites, and
OF VIRTUOUS AND GENTLE DISCIPLINE vainquisshed them valiauntly. And that done, he surrendred his office, and beinge discharged of the dignitie, he repaired
[The Letter to Sir Walter Raleigh, setting agayne to his ploughe, and applied it diligently.
forth the purpose of The Faerie Queene] I wolde demaunde nowe, if nobilitie were Sir, knowing how doubtfully all Allegoonly in the dignitie, or in his prowesse, ries may be construed, and this booke of
mine, which I have entituled the Faery the one, in the exquisite depth of his, judgeQueene, being a continued Allegory, or ment, formed a Commune welth, such as it darke conceit, I haue thought good, as well should be; but the other in the person of for avoyding of gealous opinions and mis- Cyrus, and the Persians, fashioned a govconstructions, as also for your better light ernement, such as might best be: So much in reading thereof, (being so by you com- more profitable and gratious is doctrine by manded,) to discover unto you the general ensample, then by rule. So have I laboured intention and meaning, which in the whole to doe in the person of Arthure: whome I course thereof I have fashioned without ex- conceive, after his long education by Timon, pressing of any particular purposes, or by to whom he was by Merlin delivered to be accidents, therein occasioned. The generall brought up, so soone as he was borne of the end therefore of all the booke is to fashion Lady Igrayne, to have seene in a dream or a gentleman or noble person in vertuous vision the Faery Queen, with whose exceland gentle discipline: Which for that I lent beauty ravished, he awaking resolved conceived shoulde be most plausible and to seeke her out; and so being by Merlin pleasing, being coloured with an historicall armed, and by Timon throughly instructed, fiction, the which the most part of men de- he went to seeke her forth in Faerye land. light to read, rather for variety of matter In that Faery Queene I meane glory in my then for profite of the ensample. I chose generall intention, but in my particular I the historye of King Arthure, as most fitte conceive the most excellent and glorious perfor the excellency of his person, being made son of our soveraine the Queene, and her famous by many mens former workes, and kingdome in Faery land. And yet, in some also furthest from the daunger of envy, and places els, I doe otherwise shadow her. For suspition of present time. In which I have considering she beareth two persons, the one followed all the antique Poets historicall; of a most royall Queene or Empresse, the first Homere, who in the Persons of Aga- other of a most vertuous and beautifull memnon and Ulysses hath ensampled a good Lady, this latter part in some places I doe governour and a vertuous man, the one in expresse in Belphabe, fashioning her name his Ilias, the other in his Odysseis; then according to your owne excellent conceipt of Virgil, whose like intention was to doe in Cynthia, (Phæbe and Cynthia being both the person of Aeneas: after him Ariosto names of Diana). . So in the person of comprised them both in his Orlando: and Prince Arthure I sette forth magnificence in lately Tasso dissevered them againe, and particular; which vertue, for that (accordformed both parts in two persons, namely ing to Aristotle and the rest) it is the perthat part which they in Philosophy call fection of all the rest, and conteineth in it Ethice, or vertues of a private man, coloured them all, therefore in the whole course I in his Rinaldo; the other named Politice in mention the deedes of Arthure applyable to his Godfredo. By ensample of which excel- that vertue, which I write of in that booke. lente Poets, I, labour to pourtraict in Ar- But of the xii. other vertues, I make xii. thure, before he was king, the image of a other knights the patrones, for the more vabrave knight, perfected in the twelve private riety of the history: Of which these three morall vertues, as Aristotle hath devised; bookes contayn three. the which is the purpose of these first twelve The first of the knight of the Rederosse, bookes: which if I finde to be well accepted, in whome I expresse Holynes: The seconde I may be perhaps encoraged to frame the of Sir Guyon, in whome I sette forth Temother part of polliticke vertues in his per- peraunce: The third of Britomartis, a Lady son, after that hee came to be king.
Knight, in whome I picture Chastity. But, To some, I know, this Methode will seeme because the beginning of the whole worke displeasaunt, which had rather have good dis- seemeth abrupte, and as depending upon cipline delivered plainly in way of precepts, other antecedents, it needs that ye know the or sermoned at large, as they use, then thus occasion of these three knights seuerall adclowdily enwrapped in Allegoricall devises. ventures. For the Methode of a Poet hisBut such, me seeme, should be satisfide with torical is not such, as of an Historiographer. the use of these dayes, seeing all things ac- For an Historiographer discourseth of afcounted by their showes, and nothing es- fayres orderly as they were donne, accountteemed of, that is not delightfull and pleas- ing as well the times as the actions; but a ing to commune sence.
For this cause is Poet thrusteth into the middest, even where Xenophon preferred before Plato, for that it most concerneth him, and there recours