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Of victory! our ends, and Warwick's head,
Innocent Warwick's head, (for we are prologue
But to his tragedy) conclude the wonder
Of Henry's fears;” and then the glorious race
Of fourteen kings, Plantagenets, determines
In this last issue male; Heaven be obey'd !
Impoverish time of its amazement, friends,
And we will prove as trusty in our payments,
As prodigal to nature in our debts.
Death ? pish! 'tis but a sound; a name of air ;
A minute's storm, or not so much; to tumble
From bed to bed, be massacred alive
By some physicians, for a month or two,
In hope of freedom from a fever's torments,
Might stagger manhood; here the pain is past
Ere sensibly 'tis felt. Be men of spirit!
Spurn coward passion ! so illustrious mention
Shall blaze our names, and stile us Kings o'er

death. [Exeunt Sheriff and Officers with the Prisoners. Daw. Away-impostor beyond precedent! No chronicle records his fellow.

Hunt. I have
Not thoughts left: 'tis sufficient in such cases
Just laws ought to proceed.

? Our ends, and Warwick's headconclude the wonder

Of Henry's fears.] This poor prince, as Lord Bacon calls him, was undoubtedly sacrificed to the barbarous policy of the king. He was brought to trial almost immediately after Warbeck’s death, condemned, and executed for conspiring with the former to raise sedition ! He made no defence, and probably quitted, without much regret, a life that had never known one happy day.

Enter King HENRY, DURHAM, and Hialas.

K. Hen. We are resolv’d.
Your business, noble lords, shall find success,
Such as your king importunes.

Hunt. You are gracious.
K. Hen. Perkin, we are inform’d, is arm’d to

die;

In that we'll honour him. Our lords shall follow
To see the execution; and from hence
We gather this fit use ;*—that public states,
As our particular bodies, taste most good
In health, when purged of corrupted blood.

[Exeunt.

We gather this fit use.] The poet seems to apply this word in the Puritanical sense (then sufficiently familiar) of doctrinal or practical deduction. See Mass. vol. iji. p. 293. and Jonson, vol. vi. p.55.

I cannot dismiss this “ Chronicle History," as Ford calls it, without observing that it has been much under-rated. That the materials are borrowed from Lord Bacon is sufficiently clear; but the poet bas arranged them with skill, and conducted bis plot with considerable dexterity to the fatal catastrophe. Perkin is admirably drawn; and it would be unjust to the author to overlook the striking consistency with which he has marked his character. Whatever might be his own opinion of this person's pretensions, he has never suffered him to betray his identity with the Duke of York in a single thought or expression. Perkin has no soliloquies, no side speeches, to compromise bis public assertions; and it is pleasing to see with what ingenuity Ford has preserved him from the contamination of real history, and contrived to sustain his dignity to the last with all imaginable decorum, and thus rendered him a fit subject for the Tragic Muse.

Of Huntley, the noble Huntley, and Dalyell, I have already spoken :--the author seems, in truth, to have lavished most of his care on the Scotch characters, and with a success altogether proEPILOGUE.

1

Here has appear'd, though in a several fashion,
The threats of majesty; the strength of passion;
Hopes of an empire; change of fortunes; all
What can to theatres of Greatness fall,
Proving their weak foundations. Who will please,
Amongst such several sights, to censure these
No births abortive, not a bastard-brood,
(Shame to a parentage, or fosterhood,)
May warrant, by their loves, all just excuses,
And often find a welcome to the Muses.

portioned to his exertions. Of his English personages much cannot be said, except, indeed, that he has given a most faithful portraiture of the cold, calculating, stern, shrewd, and avaricious Henry.

It is observable that the style of this piece, though occasionally deficient in animation, is more equable, clear, and dignified than that of any other of his works. It is such as the historic drama ought to appear in, and may justly excite some regret that the author had not more frequently taken his plots from our domestic struggles. Another thing too may be noticed. In most of his tragedies, the trivial and comic personages are poorly drawn: if they attempt to be witty, they usually fall into low buffoonry; and if they aim at a scene of mirth, are sure to create sadness or disgust. The low characters of this play do neither. They are uniformly sustained; their language, though technical, is not repulsive, and the style of that wise piece of formality, the mayor of Cork, who does not venture on one positive expression from first to last, is not only supported with undeviating skill, but rendered really amusing

THE

FANCIES, CHASTE AND NOBLE.

VOL. II.

K

THE FANCIES, CHASTE AND NOBLE.

The title-page of this Comedy, of wbich there is but one edition, stands thus in the 4to. “ The Fancies, Chast and Noble: Presented by the Queenes Majesties Servants, at the Phænix in Drury Lane. Fide Honor. London, printed by E. P. for Henry Seile, and are to be sold at his shop, at the Tyger's Head in Fleet Street, over against Saint Dunstan's Church, 1638.” It was probably licensed for the stage in 1637, as Ford brought out a new piece (The Lady's Trial) this year.

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