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Bure makes no mention of this spiritual romance. And Du Fresnoy only gives an account of an edition of it, not dated, but placed between two modern books of 1681 and 1729, in his Bibliotheque des Romans, tom. ii. 172. “Le voyage du Chevalier errant, par Jean de Carthemi, Dominicain, in 8vo."
Spiritual allegories of this kind, I may add, became frequent in this country, and were read with avidity. Witness - The Isle of Man; or, The Legall Proceeding in Man-fhire against Sinne. Wherein, by way of a continued Allegorie, the chiefe Malefactors disturbing both Church and Commonwealth are detected and attached; with their Arraignment, and Judiciall Trial, according to the Lawes of England. The Spirituall vse thereof, with an apologie for the manner of handling, most nem · cellary to be first read, for direction in the right use of the Allegory thorowout, is added in the end. By Rich. Bernard, Rector of Batcomb, Somerset. 1628.".. 12mo. The fifth edition of this work, is that which now lies before me. To this work I am of opinion we may attribute John Bunyan's PILGRIM's PROGRESS; and also Benjamin Keach's TRAVELS OF True GodLINESS, and his PROGRESS of Sin. Perhaps P. Fletcher had also in mind the Isle of Man, when he denominated his allegorical poem The Purple ISLAND. There is, however, an elder work, entitled “ ROOME FOR A Messe oF KNAVES," 4to. 1610, in which is “A narration of a strange but true battell fought in the little ise (or worlde) of Mun.” Man is represented as a “castle beleaguer'd by two huge armies;” the Virtues, and the Vices. And the author seems to have had his eye on the foes of Alma in the FAERIE QUEENE.
Neither M1. Spence nor Mr. Warton have made the leaf mention of Henry More's PLATONICK SONG OF THE SOUL; a poem written avowedly in imitation of Spenser, and often prefenting as just an allegory and as sweet a stanza as the original which it profeffes to follow. This poem, in three Books., was first printed in 1642, and again in 1647. Milton, I think, appears to have read it with attention. More indeed was his fellow-collegia, and friend. The criticks have also neglected to notice the PSYCHE, OR LOVE'S MYSTERIE, by Jof. Beau. mont, fol. 16.1.
It remains, hat I should mention the allegorical design of one of Spenser's citemporaries, viz. John Day, whom I suppose to be the dramatck writer of that name, and who was a member of Caius Collige, Cambridge. The work, of which I am to give an accoint, is in manuscript; and is one of the many literary curiofties which belonged to the late Duke of Bridge. water, and nav belong to his Grace's nephew, Earl Gower. Lt is entitled, PEREGRINATIO SCHOLASTICA, or, Learninges Pillgrimadge, Containeinge the straunge Aduentures, and various
Entertainements, he founde in his trauailes towerdes the shrine of
Latria. Composede, and deuided into seuerall Morrall Trac· tates, by John Daye, Cantabr.” It is not dated. In bis
dedication to Mr. Thomas Dowton, gentlemari, he calls his composition "a morall poeme;" but be could not mean a metrical composition, for the whole is in prose. The Tractates are twenty in number. The first contains “ Learninges parentage, his occasion of Trauaile, his attendants, and entertaines ment amongst the Cosmophili, or world. louers." The second, “ An inuitation froin Poneria ; his purpoffe to visit her, with the loíle of Time, &c.” The fifth, “what masques and dances Ponerias 7 champeons entertaine him withall; at which he fell in loue with Poneria." The fixth, “ Alethe incastrata, or Truthe in prisoun, discouering Poneria to be a strumpett; and her seven champeóns, the 7 deadlie fins.". The characters of the seven deadly fins are drawn with reference to Gower, Chaucer, Lydgate, &c. In the last Tractate, 16 Experience directs Learning the next and onelie way to the shrine of Latria.” This account may serve to show the fondness for allegory in Spenser's days. TODD.
SPENSER'S STANZA, VERSIFICATION, AND
ALTHOUGH Spenser's favourite Chaucer had made use of the ottava rima“, or starza of eight lines; yet it seems probable, that Spenser was principally induced to adopt it, with the addition of one line, from the practice of Ariosto and Tasso,
* Chaucer's stanza is not ftri&tly.fo. Betusti in his life of Boccace, acquaints us, that Boccace was the irventor of the ottava rima, and that the Theseide of that autho was the first poem in which it was ever applied. T: WARTO... et en
the most fashionable poets of his age. ' But Spenser, in choosing this stanza, did not suficiently confider the genius of the English language, which does not easily fall into a frequent repetition of the fame termination; a circumstance natural to the Italian, which deals largely in identical cadences. ' ... Besides, it is to be remembered, that Taffo and Ariosto did not embarrafs themselves with the neceflity of finding out fo many similar terminations as Spenser. Their ottava rima has only three similar endings, alternately rhyming. : The two last lines formed a distinct rhyme. But, in Spenfer, the second rhyme is repeated four times, and the third three. This constraint led our author into many absurdities; the most striking and obvious of which seem to be the following..
1. It obliged him to dilate the thing to be expressed, however unimportant, with triding and tedious circumlocutions, viz. F. Q. ii. ii. 44.
« Now hath fair Phæbe with her silver face : " Thrise seene the shadowes of this neather world,
“ Sith last I left that honourable place,
:“ In which her roiall presence is enrold." . That is, It is three months since I left her palace.
II. It neceffitated him, when matter failed towards the close of a stanza, to run into a ridiculous redundancy and repetition of words, as in F. Q. ii. ix. 33. i 6 "In which was nothing pourtrahed nor wrought, “ Nor wrought nor pourtrahed, but easie to be thought.”
III. It forced him, that he might make out his complement of rhymes, to introduce a puerile or impertinent idea, as in F. Q. ii. ix. 45.
See examples of the measures of the Provencial poets, in Petrarch. Spenser forms a compound of many of these.
-“ Nor that proud towre of Troy, though richly GUILT." Being here laid under the compulfion of producing a consonant word to spilt and built, which are pre ceding rhymes, he has mechanically given us an image at once little and improper."
To the difficulty of a stanza so injudicioufly chosen, I think we may properly impute the great number of his elleipses, and it may be easily conceived, how that constraint, which occafioned superfluity, should at the same time be the cause of omiffion.
Notwithstanding these inconveniencies flow from Spenser's measure, it must yet be owned, that some. advantages arise from it; and we may venture to affirm, that the fullness and fignificancy of Spenser's defcriptions, is often owing to the prolixity of his stanza, and the multitude of his rhymes. The dif- *; cerning reader is desired to consider the following ftanza, as an instance of what is here advanced. Guyon is binding FUROR, F. Q. ii. iv. 15. , ' 66 With hundred yron chaines he did him bind,'
" And hundred knots, that did him fore constraine .
Stared full wide, and threw forth sparkes of fyre; ..; “ And, more for ranck despight then for great paine,
“ Shakt his long locks colourd like copper-wyre, ". “ And þit his tawny beard to thew his raging yre." ;
In the subsequent ftanza there are some images, which perhaps were produced by a multiplicity of rhymes. F. Q. iv. V. 45.
“ He all that night, that too long night, did passe :
Dryden, I think, fomewhere remarks, that rhyme often helped him to a thought; an observation, which, probably, Spenter's experience had likewise supplied him with. Spenser, however, must have found more assistance in this respect, from writing in rhyme, than Dryden, in proportion as his stanza obliged him to a more repeated use of it. ..!
In speaking of Spenser's rhyme, it ought to be remarked, that he often new-spells a word to make it rhyme more precisely. Take these specimens,
F. Q. v. xii. 31. .:. And of her own foule entrailes makes her meat, .
“ Meat fit for such a monster's monsterous DYEAT." Again, F. Q. iii. iii. 48. ." Tho when the term is full ACCOMPLISHID, - “ Then shall a spark of fire, which hath long while
“ Bene in his ashes raked up and hid.” ? Again, F. Q. iii. iv. 42.
“ Then all the rest into their coches CLIM,
s Upon great Neptunes necke they softly swim.” Again, F. Q. iv. iii. 26.
"Mightily amate, .“ As fast as forward erst, now backward to RETRATE.” Again, F. Q. iv. ii. 27. ..." Shall have that golden girdle for reward,
" And of, &c.
“ Shall to the faireft ladie be PREFAR’D,” ? And, to be short, we meet with YCLED for yclad, DARRE for dare, PREJUDIZE for prejudice, sam for fame, LAM for lamb, DENAY for deny, PERVART for pervert, HEARE for hair, and numberless other instances of orthography destroyed for the sake of rhyme. This was a liberty which Chaucer, Gower, and Lydgate, frequently made use of; and it may