Michael Drayton.

The complete works of Michael Drayton, now first collected (Volume 2) online

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suit to him, and kind entertainment for his skill in physic,
and prophecy ; justifiable in general, as well as to make
I'rtjplion their surgeon, which our excellent Spenser hath
done ; and in particular cause, upon the most respected and

> In Beva .ad Cyg. Cant. « JJe Pontiticib. lib. 4.

* Because tlie oM sohlicrs of Julius his legions resided there.
^ Conjeetiua in Malniesljuriensem.

* llitiuf. Llaiid. in Dreviario. f A great legion.


divinely honored name of Salt ; of which, if you observe it
used in all sacrifices by express commandment^ of the true
God, the r^^-si nSo* in Holy Writ, the religion of the Salt,
set first, and last taken away as a symbol- of perpetual
friendship, that in Horner^ lidaai 6' aXog diioio,\ the title of
'AyvirmX given it by Lycophron,^ and passages of the Ocean's
medicinable epithets^ because of his saltness, you shall see
apparant and apt testimony.

174. From Woden, hy which name they stylid Mercury.
Of the Britons' descent from Jove, if you remember but
j^neas son to Anchises and Venus, with her derivation of
blood from Jiqjiter's parents, sufficient declaration will offer
itself. For this of IFoden, see somewhat to the Third
Song. To what you read there, I here more fitly add this : .
Woden, in Saxon genealogies, is ascended to as the chief
ancestor of their most royal progenies; so you may see in
Nennius, Bede, Ethelwerd, Florence of JVorcester, a.n Anoaymus
de Rerjali Prosapid, Huntingdon, and Horeden, yet in such
sort that in some of them they go beyond him, through
Frithwald, Frealaf, Frlthulf, Fin, Godtdph; Getcc, and others,
to Seth; but with so much uncertainty, that I imagine
many of their descents were just as true as the Theogony in
Hcslod, ApoUodoms, or that of Prester John's sometimes de-
riving himself' very near from the loins of Salomon. Df
this IVoden, beside my authors named, special mention
is found in Paul Warnfred,'^ who makes Frea his wife (others
call her Fricco, and by her understand Venus) and Adam of
Breme,^ wliich describe him as 3Iars, but in Geffrey of Mou-

^ Levit. 2. comm. 13. et Num. 18. * Salt of the Covenant.

* Ciel. ilhoJigin. Antiq. Lect. 12. cap. 1. vid. Plutarch. Symijos. e.
cap. 10. * Iliad, t. vid. Lips. Saturual. 1. cap. 2.

t He sprinkled it with divine Salt. :;: A Cleanser.

■* In Cassandra. ' Gael. Ant. Lect. U. cap. 22.

^ Daniian a (roes de Morib. ..-Ethiupum.
^ De Luugobard. L cap. S. ^ iiist. Eccleaiast. lib. 4. cap. iH .


mouth, and FlorUcrjus, in Hengisfs own person, he is affirmed
the same with Mercury, who by Tacitus' report was their
chief Deity ; and that also is warranted in the denomination
of our JVodensday (according to the Dutch SiiEtolintstlft'igh)
for the fourth day of the week, titled by the ancient plane-
tary account witli name of Mercury. If that allusion in the
Illustrations of the Third Song to Merc allow it him not,
tlien take the other first taught me by Lipsius^ fetching
Jf^ochi.n from SliSllott or SUtn, which is to gain, and so make
his name IFondan expressing in that sense the self name^
'EffjtA^s xs^buiog* used by the Greeks. But without this in-
(juiry you understand the Author.

178. Here put the German names upon the weekly days.

From their Sunnan for the Sun, Monan for the Moon,
Tuisco, or Tuisto (of whom see to the Fourth Song) for Mars,
Woden for Mercury, Thor for Jupiter, Fre, Frie, or Frlgo for
Venus, Sceturn for Saturn, they styled their days Sunnan-
hciej, Monan-hsej, tuij-cons-basj, pobenf-bsej, ])opj"-b?e5, ppij-
biej, Sa?tepnf-boej: thence came our days now used, Sunday,
Munday, Tuesday, JVodensday, Thursday, Friday, Satiirday;
which planetary account was very ancient among the
yEgyptians^ (having much Hebrew discipline), but so super-
stitious, that, being great astronomers and very observant
of mysteries produced out of ^umber and quantity, they
l)egan on the Jewish Sabbath and imposed the name of
Saturn, on the next the Sun, then the Moon, as we now
reckon, omitting two planets in every nomination, as you
easily conceive it. One might seek, yet miss the reasons of
that form; but nothing gives satisfaction equal to that of
all-penetrating Joseph Scaliger,* whose intended reason for it

' Ad. Tacit. Oerm. not. 32. ^ Liician. in Tinione.

* Mirrurii president oi (/ain. ^ Dion. Hist. Itom. X^.

* ])e Eniendat. 1'emj). 1. Eundcm de hiic re Prolegoui. et lib. 7.
doctorem merito agnoscimus.



is thus. In a circle describe an heptagonal and equilateral
figure; from whose every side shall fall equilateral triangles,
and their angles respectively on the corners of the inscribed
figure, which are noted with
the planets after their not in-
terrupted order. At the right
side of any of the bases begin
your account, from that to the
oppositely noted planet, thence
to his opposite, and so shall
you find a continued course in
that order (grounded perhaps
among the ancients upon
mysteries of number, and in-




those superior bodies over this habitable orb) which some
have sweated at, in inquiry of proportions, music distances,
and referred it to planetary hours : whereas they (the very
name of hour for a twenty-fourth part of a day, being un-
usual till about the Peloponnesiac war) had their original of
later time than this hebdomadal account, whence the hourly
from the morning of every day had his breeding, and not the
other from this, as pretending and vulgar astrologers receive
in supposition. At last, by Condantine the Great, and Pope
Sylvester, the name of Sun-day was turned into the Lord's-
day^ ; as it is styled Dominicus et Kvoiaxri ; of Saturday, into
the Sabbath; and the rest not long afterward named accord-
ing to their numeral order, as the First, Second, or Third
Feria (that is Holiday, thereby keeping the remembrance of
Easter-week, the beginning of tlie Ecclesiastic year, which
was kept every day holy) for Sunday, Munday, Tuesday.
You may note here that Ccesar"^ was deceived in telling us,

1 Nicephor. Callist. Eccles. Hist. K. cap. fiT. Polyd. Invent. Ker.
6. cap. 5. " Coiumeut. Gallic. 0.


the Germans worshipped no other Gods but cpAos cermmt,
et quorum opihus aperth jiivantur,* Solem, Vulcanum, and
Lunam, rellquus ne famd quidem accepisse ; for you see more
than those thus honoured by them, as also they had^ their
eofceji Monach for Api'll, dedicated to some adored Power
of that name : but blame him not ; for the discovery of tlie
Northern parts was but in weakest infancy, when he de-
livered it.

197. Good Ethelbert of Kent first Christ'ned English King.

About the year 600 Christianity was received among the
Saxons ; this Etkclhcrt (being first induced to taste that hap-
piness by Berta his Queen, a Christian, and daughter to IHI-
peric (or Lothar the II.) King of France) was afterward bap-
tized by Augustine a Monk sent hither, with other workmen
for such a harvest, by Pope Gregory the I. zealously being
moved to conversion of the English nation : so that after
the first coming of Hengist they had lived here one hundred
and fifty years by the common account without tincture of
true religion : nor did the Britons who had long before (as
you see to the Eiglith Song) received it, at all impart it by
instruction, which Gildas imputes to them for merit of
divine revenge. JFIiite of Basingstoke'^ (I must cite his name,
you would laugh at me if I affirmed it) refers to Kent's
Paganism, and British Christianitg before this conversion, the
original of our vulgar by-word, Nor in Christeiulom, Nor in

207. 'f/uU ahstinence from fiesh for forty days hegan.^

Began it here. So understand him ; for plainly that fast-
ing-time was long before in other Churches, as ajjpears in

* Whom thoy see and have daily use of, as the Sun, Moon, and
the F'Q-f, Ijy name of Vulcan. ' JJed. Lib. de Temi)oribus.

- Hist. /. not. -'4. 3 (540.


the Decreeing Epistle^ of Pope Tehsphorus, constituting that
the Clergy should fast from Qulu'piageshiKC (that is, Shrwe-
sundaij) to Easter, whereas the Laity and they both were
before bound but to six weeks accounted, as now, from the
first Sunday in Lent ; so that, even from the first^ of Chris-
tianity, for remembrance of our Saviour, it seems, it hath
been observed, although I know it hath been referred to
Telesijhonis, as hrst author. He died in 140 of Christ. But
if you compare this of him with that of Pope Mekhiades^
(some hundred and seventy years after) taking away the
fast upon Sunday, and Thursday, you will lose therein
forty days, and the common name of Qiuidragesime ; but
again lind it thus. S. Gregory"^ (after both these) makes Lent
to be so kept, that yet no fasting be upon Sundays ; because
(among other reasons) he would have it as the tenth of
time consecrated to God in prayer and abstinence (and the
Canonists,^ how justly I argue not, put it in their division
of Personal Tithes) then, in this form, after the exception,
calculates out his number. From the first Sunday in Lent
to Easier are six weeks, that is, forty-two days, whence
six Sundays subtracted, remain thirty-six, which (fractions
avoided) is the quotient of three hundred and sixty-five,
being the number of the common year divided by ten. But
seeing that holy number (as he calls it) of forty, which our
Saviour honoured with His fasting, is by this reckoning ex-
cluded, he adds, to the first week, the four last days of the
QuinquagesiriM, that is, A sli- Wednesday, 'Thursday, Friday, and
Saturday ; so keeping both his conceit of tithing, and also
observation of that number, which we remember only (not
able to imitate) in our assayed abstinence. For proof of

1 Dist. 4. c. 4. statuimus et il)i(l. D. Ambrosias.

2 Ita etiaux Barouius, sod et viilc Eusebii C'hrouic. in sixto. 1.

3 Dist 4. de Cousecrat. o. 14. Iciuuiuiu.
* 111 Hdinil. JJist. "). do Cousecrat. c. 1(5.

5 KebuUTruct. de Dwim C^iucst. 3. uum. 31.


this in Erconbert, both £ede and Mahneshary, beside tlieir
later followers, are witnesses. Their Saxon name near ours
was Lenjcceu-paej-cen/ as the other Four Fasts ymbpeu

210. So Ella coming in soon from the Britons won.

Near forty years after the Saxons' first arrival, ^lla (of
the same nation) with his sons Pleucing, or Pleting, Cimen,
and Cissa landed at Cimenshore in the now Sussex (it is sup-
jiosed to be near the IVitterings by Chichester-) and having
his forces increased by supply, after much bloodshed twixt
him and the Britons, and long siege of the City Andred-
ceaster, now Neioenden in Kent (as learned Camden conjectures)
got supreme dominion of those Southern parts, with title of
King of Sussex, whose son and successor Cissn's name, is yet
there left in Cii-j-a-ceajxeji* for Chichester and in a Hill en-
circled with a deep trench for military defence, called Ciss-
hurie, by Offington. The Author fitly begins with him after
the Kentish ; for he was the first that made the number of
the Saxon Kings plural, by planting and here reigning over
the South Saxons'" : and as one was always in the Heptarchy,
which had title of First, or Chief King of the Angles and
Saxons, so this ^lla not only was honoured with it,* but
also the prerogative by priority of time, in first enjoining
it, before all other Princes of his nation : But his dominion
afterward was for the most part still under the Kentish and
Jf'est Saxon Kings.

210, Saint Wilfrid sent from York into his realm received.
This JFilfrid Archbishop of York expelled that See by

^ Canut. Leg. 16.

* Ex antiq. ('hartil Eccles. Selesens. ap. Camden.

* So is it called in Floreut. Wigorn. page 331.
^ Kingdom of Smotex.

* Ethfhvcrd. Hist. 3. cap. 2. ; Bed. Hist. 2. cap. 5.


Egfrkl King of Northumberland, was kindly received by
Edilwahh (otherwise Ethelwalch, being before Christened
through religious persuasion of his godfather Wulplur King
of Mercland) and converted the Smth Saxons to the Gospel.
He endowed this JFilfrid with Selsey a cherronese in Sussex,
and was so founder of a Bishopric, afterward translated,
under the Norman Conqueror, to Chichester, whose Cathedral
Church in public Monuments honours the name of CeduvUii
(of whom see to the Ninth Song) King of West Sex for her
first creator : but the reason of that was rather because
Cedivalla after death of Edilwalch (whom he slew) so
honoured JFilfrid,^ ut* Magistrum et Domhium omni Pro-
vincice eum pra'fecit, nihil in totd Provincid sine illius assen.m
faciendum arbitratus; whereupon it was, as it seems, thought
fit (according to course of yielding with the sway of fortune)
to forget Edilwalch, and acknowledge Cedwalla (then a
Pagan) for first Patron of that Episcopal dignity. It is
reported that three years, before this general receipt there
of Christ's profession, continued without rain ; insomuch
that Famine, and her companion Pestilence, so vexed the
Province, that in multitudes of forty or fifty at a time, they
used, hand in hand, to end their miseries in the swallowing
waves of their neighbouring Ocean : But, that all ceased
upon JFilfrid's preaching ; who taught them also first (if
Henry of Riintingdons teaching deceive me not) to catch all
manner of fish, being before skilled only in taking of eels.^
I know, some^ make Eadbert Abbot of the Monastery in
Selseij, under King Ine, first Bishop there, adding, that be-
fore his time the Province was subject to JFinchester ; but
that rightly understood discords not ; that is, if you refer

1 Malniesb. de Gest. Pontifie. 3.

* Tliat he committed the supreme government of that Province to

■■* Sussex men taught to catch fish,

* Matth. Westmonastericnsis.


it to instauration of what was discontinued by JVUfri^s
return to his Archbishopric.

26S. Adopting for his heir young Edmund

Penda King of Merdand had slain Sigebert (or Sebert) and
Anna Kings of East-Angles, and so in dominion might be
said to have possessed that Kingdom ; But Anna had divers
successors of his blood, of whom, Ethclhirth was traitorously
slain in a plot dissembled by Offa King of Merdand, and
this part of the Heptarchy confounded in the Mercian
Crown. Then did Offa adopt this S. Edmvnd a Saxon, into
name of successor in that kingdom : which he had not long
enjoyed but that through barbarous cruelty, chiefly of one
Ilingiiar a Dane (Foh/dore will needs have his name Agner)
he was with miserable torture martjTed upon the lOtli of
November,^ wliither his Canonization directeth us for holy
memory of him.

305. And slew a thousand ]\Ionks as they devonily jjray^d.

You may add two hundred to the Author's number.
This Ethelfrid or Edilfrid King of Korthumherland, aspiring
to increase his territories, made war against the bordering
Britons. But as he was in the field, by Chester, near the on-
set, he saw, with wonder, a multitude of Monks assembled
in a place by, somewhat secure j demanded the cause, and
was soon informed that they were there ready to assist his
enemies' swords vdth their devout orisons, and had one
called Brocmail, professing their defence from the English
forces. The King no sooner heard this, but Ergo (saith
he, being a heathen) si adrersus nos ad Dominum sumn
daniant, 2>rofccto ei ipsi quamvis arma non ferant, contra nos
jmgiiant, qui adversis nos im2}recationihus persequuntur* ; pre-

1 870.

* If they pray to their God against us, then plainly they fight
agaiuiit us.


sently commands tlieir spoil : whicli so was performed by
his soldiers, that twelve hundred were in their devotions
put to the sword. A strange slaughter of Religious persons,
at one time and place ; but not so strange as their whole
number in this one Monastery, which was two thousand one
hundred, not such idle lubberly sots as later times pestered
the world withal, truly pictured in that description^ of (their
character) Sloth.

2jKtth thjo slttttB cone

f- must stt sailj the ^rggc, or rise i must ncrlis nap,
{• man not stontj nt 5touj;f, nr boithout mi stoic feneele,
S^Ocic {• Ijrought abcU (but tf mg taknljc tt maUe)
^houlJJ nt ringing tjo mr rise, or jj lucre ri|»c to tiiur.
%]t began Benedicite baith a belfee, anti his brcst hnoltellf
SntJ rasfeleij, antj rorctr, anti rut at the last ;
if {■ shoultj tine bo this tJaie, me Inste not to lohe.
i can not |jcrfitln mn Pater nost, as the i3riest it singeth
53ut i can rimes of Eobin Hod, anU Randall of Chester,
23ut of our ^orij or our ILatJn i lerne nothing at all*
{■ am occu))icti cberie Ijan, holn Ijaw anU other,
tlJltith xQlt talcs at the ^llc, anU other hjhile in Churches*
(CoUs })aine anti his passion full seltrc thinhe f thereon
i- bisitetf nebcr fcblemcn, ne fettrcU folhe in jjittcs,
i- habe Icber here an lilarlotric, or a somcrs game,
©r Icasings to laugli at antj bilwe mn neighbours,
Ti\\t\\ all that cbcr j\larke maUe, Math, lohn antJ Lucas.
SlnlJ <Stgilrs antj fasting tiaics all these let £■ ^asse,
SlntJ lie in bctJ in ient, anij mi ILcmman in mine armes.
i habe ben Priest anU I'arson jiassing thnrtie bjinter,
Set can {■ nether ^ol fe ne sing, ne Saints libes reaU,
But ^. can ft'nU in a feilU, or in a furlong an hare
iSetter then i\\ Beatus Vir, ©r in Beati Omnes.

^ Rob. de Lafiglauil, sive Joannes Malverne, Pass, 5.


Not such were those Bangor Monks : but they Omnes de
lahore mammm suarum vivere solebant* Observe here the
difference twixt the more ancient times and our corrupted
neighbour ages, M'hich have been so branded, and not un-
justly, with dissembled bestial sensualities of Monastic pro-
fession, that in the universal Visitation under Hen. VIII.
every Monastery afforded shameful discovery of Sodomites
and incontinent Friars ; in Canterbury Priory of Benedictins
nine Sodomites ; in Battell Abbey fifteen and, in many other,
like proportion ; larger reckoning will not satisfy if you
account their Wenches, which married and single (for they
affected that variety) supplied the wants of their counter-
feited solitariness, so that, hereupon, after an account of
six hundred Convents of Monks and Friars, with Mendi-
cants, in this kingdom, when time endured them, Je laisserai/,
saith one,^ mainienard au Ledeur calculer comUen pii^r le moins
devo'mt estre de Jils de imtains en Angletere, je dl seulement fih
de Moines et de Putames.f These were they who admired
all for Ilehrew or Greek which they understood not, and had
at least (as many of our now professing Formalists) Latin
enough to make such a speech as Eahlais hath to Gargantua
for Paris Bells, and call for their Vinum Cos ; which, in one
of them personated, receive thus from a noble poet i^

Fac extrb, : mliil hoc : extra totum sit ojm-tet,
Sobrih enimjusth atque jpih potare juhet Lex.
Vinum Imtificat cor hominis, prcecipv^ Cos.
Ch-atia sit Doniino, Vinum Cos, inguit, habemus.

How my reader tastes this, I know not ; therefore I will-

* All lived of handy labour.

' H. .Stcphcu eu I'Eutroduct. au Traits de la Conformity, etc. 1.
chap. 21.

t I leave it to the reader to guess, how many Bastards the Monks
and I'^riars got for the Laity.

" Jan. Duuz. iSatyr. 5.


ingly quit liim ; and add only, that William of Malmesbunj
grossly errs in affirming that this Bangor^ is turned into a
Bishopric ; but pardon him, for he lived in his Cloister and
perhaps was deceived by equivocation of name, there being
in Caernarvaji a Bishopric of the same title to this day,
which somebody later hath on the other side ill taken for

314. TFJio re-ordainM Yorke a Bishop's government.

For in the British times it had a Metropolitic See (as is
noted to the Ninth Song) and now by Eclwine (converted to
Christian discipline both through means of his wife Ethel-
burg, daughter to Ethelbert King of Kent, and religious per-
suasion of God's Ministers) was restored to the former
dignity, and Paulinus, in it, honoured with name of Arch-
l)ishop, being afterwards banished that Province, and made
Bishop of Bochester, which some have ignorantly made him

321. Nor tJwse that in the stem of Saxon Crida came.

Most of our Chronologers begin the Mercian race-royal
with Penda ; But Henri/ of Huntingdon (not without his
proofs and followers) makes Crida (grandfather to Penda)
first in that Kins-dom.


334. Confirmed in Christ's helkf by tJtat most reverend Chad.

This JVulpher, son to Penda restored to his father's King-
dom, is reported^ with his own hands to have slain his two
sons, lP\ilphald and Bufin, for that they privily withdrew
themselves to that famous S. Chad, or Cedda, Bishop of
Lichfield, for instruction in the Christian Faith ; and all this

1 In Hist, et Lib. 4. de Pontiticib. in Dorcecestrensibus.
^ Ant. lib. Aca<lem. ])er Europ. edit. ir)i>0.

^ ll()l)ert. de Simipham in Hist, retroburgens. ap. Camd. in
Stafford, et Korthamptou. et J. Stovuium.

VOL. II. 7


is supposed to be done where the now Stone in Staffordshire
is seated. Hereupon the Author relies. But, the credit of
it is more than suspicious, not only for that in Classic
authority I find his issue only to be Kenrcd, and S. JFerhurge
(by £rmengild daughter to Erconhert of Kent) but withal
that he was both Christian, and a great Benefactor to the
Church. For it appears by consent of all, that Peada, Weda,
or Fenda (all these names he hath) eldest son of the first
Ferula, first received in Middle Emjh (part of Merdan<\l) the
Faith, and was baptized by Finnan Bishop of Lindisfarne* :
after whose violent death, in spite of Osicy King of Northum-
herlarul, Lnmin, Elba, and Edherth, gentlemen of power in
Mercland, saluted JVidplur (brother to Feada) King of all
that Province, who was then, as it seems (by Florence of
Worcester and Bede's reporting of four Bishops in succession
preferred by him) of Christian name : But howsoever he
was at that time, it is certain that in the second or third
years of his reign, he was godfather to King Edilwalch of
Sussex, and bestowed on him as a gift in token of that
spiritual adoption, the Isle of Wight with another territory
in West Saxony, and gave also to S. Cedda (made, by con-
sent of him and King Oswi/, Bishop of Lindisfarnc) fifty
Hides of land (a Hide,f a, lAonghdand, or a Carue, I hold
clearly equivalent) towards foundation of a Monastery.
All this compared, and his life, in our Monks, observed,

* It is that now called Nob/ Island, by East the utmost parts of
NorDiumhtrland, whence the Bishopric about 995 was translated to

t Ita enim a]!n<l Matth. Paris, Huntingdon. Th. Walsinghani.
docemur, licet aiii 100 Acris, alii aliter detiniunt. Cateriim quod nie
maximo movet, et abstjue hiusitatione in banc sententiam pedibus ire
cogit, en tibi ex Dumtaui Charta (An. 9(53) qui Terrre. partem con-
reclit spjitf-m Arntronim tjvod Ainjlice (licit ur sfptevi fiidas. Nee
immeniorem hie te vcllcm vocabuli illius apud Jur. Cons, nostros,
liitjc ft Gainc; quod Arvum restibile iuterpretari haiit ignorat
JJiipeudius quiapiam.


hardly endures this note of persecution ; which in respect
of his foundership of Peterborough Abbey, Robert of Su:aj_'-
ham a Monk there reporting it, or those from whom he had
it, might better in silence have buried it, or rather not so
ungratefully feigned it. I only find one thing notably ill
of him : that he, first of the English Kings, by Simony
made a Bishop, which was Wine of London, as Malmesbiiri/
is author.

350. And {through his Rule) the Church from Taxes stronghj


Ethelbald King of Mercland, Founder of Croidand Abbey
in Lincolnshire, a great, martial, and religious Prince, in a
Synod held (Cuthbcrt then Archbishop of Canterbury) en-
larged Ecclesiastic liberty in this form, Donationem meam me
vivente concedo, ut omnia Momisteria et Ecclesice Regni mei a
publicis Vectigalibus, Operibus, et Omribus absolvantur, nisi In-
structionibus Arcium vel Pontium, quce minquam tdli possunt
relaxari ; «.g.. He discharged all Monasteries and Churches
of all kind of taxes, works, and imposts, excepting such as
were for building of Forts and Bridges, being (as it seems the
law was then) not releasable. For, beside the authority of
this Statute of Ethelbald, it appears frequent in Charters of
the Saxon times, that, upon Endowment, and Donations, to
Churches with largest words of exemption, and liberty fi'om
all secular charges, the conclusion of the Ilahenduin, was,
Exceptis istis tribus, Expeditione, Pontis, Arcisve const ructionc*

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