"He likewise said, 'that there was a petition at the Quarter
Sessions, disavowed by all the Justices there, which he tore.'
"Sir William Boteler was likewise called in, [and] asked when he
was at Yorke.
"[He] answered, 'On Wednesday last was sevennight, he came from
Yorke, and came to his house in London.
"'He heard of a petition that was never delivered.
"'He never heard of any censure of the Parliament.
"'He heard that a paper was burnt for being irregularly burnt
"'He had heard that the Petition, that went under the name of
the Kentish Petition, was burnt by the hands of the common hangman.
"'He never heard of any order of either, [or] of both, the Houses
concerning [the Petition].
"'He was at Hull on Thursday or Friday was a sevennight: as he
came from Yorke, he took Hull in the way. He had heard, that
Sir Roger Twisden was questioned for the like Petition.
"'He was yesterday at BLACKHEATH.'
"Resolved, upon the question, that Captain Lovelace shall be
presently Committed prisoner to the Gatehouse.
"Resolved, upon the question, that Sir William Boteler shall be
presently committed prisoner to the Fleet.
"Ordered, that the sergeant shall apprehend them, and carry them
in safe custody, and deliver them as prisoners to the several
On the 4th May, 1642, the House of Commons ordered Mr. Whittlock
and others to prepare a charge against Mr. Lovelace and Sir William
Boteler with all expedition; but nothing further is heard of the
matter till the 17th June, When Lovelace and Boteler
petitioned the House separately for their release from custody.
Hereupon Sir William was discharged on finding personal bail to the
extent of 10,000, with a surety for 5000; and in
the case of his companion in misfortune it was ordered, on the
question, that "he be forthwith bailed upon GOOD security." This
"good security," surely, did not reach the sum mentioned by Wood,
namely, 40,000; but it is likely that the author of the
ATHENAE is ONLY wrong by a cypher, and that the amount fixed was
4000, as it has been already suggested. Thus Lovelace's
confinement did not exceed seven weeks in duration, and the
probability, is that the sole inconvenience, which he subsequently
experienced, was the loss of the bail.
The description left by Wood and Aubrey of the end of Lovelace
can only be reconciled with the fact, that his daughter and heiress
conveyed Kingsdown, Hever, and a moiety of Chipsted,
to the Cokes by marriage with Mr. Henry Coke, by presuming that
those manors were entailed; while Lovelace Place, as well perhaps
as Bayford and Goodneston, not being similarly secured, were sold
to defray the owner's incumbrances. At any rate it is not,
upon the whole, very probable that he died in a hovel, in a state
of absolute poverty; that he received a pound a week
(equal to about 4 of our money) from two friends,
Cotton and another, Aubrey himself admits; and we may rest
satisfied that, however painful the contrast may have been between
the opening and close of that career, the deplorable account given
in the ATHENAE, and in the so-called LIVES OF EMINENT MEN, is much
exaggerated and overdrawn.
It has not hitherto been remarked, that among the Kentish gentry
who, from time to time, elected to change the nature of their
tenure from gavelkind to primogeniture, were the Lovelaces
themselves, in the person of Thomas Lovelace, who, by Act of
Parliament 2 and 3 Edw. VI. obtained, concurrently with several
other families, the power of conversion. This Thomas Lovelace was
not improbably the same, who was admitted a student of Gray's Inn
in 1541; and that he was of the Kentish Lovelaces there is not much
reason to doubt; although, at the same time, I am unable to fix the
precise degree of consanguinity between him and Serjeant William
Lovelace of Gray's Inn, who died in 1576, and who was great-grandfather
to the author of LUCASTA. The circumstance that the real property
of Thomas Lovelace aforesaid, situated in Kent, was released by Act
of Parliament, 2 and 3 Edw. VI. from the operations of gavelkind tenure
(assuming, as is most likely to have been the case, that he was of the
same stock as the poet, though not an immediate ancestor,) seems to
explain the following allusion by Dudley Lovelace in the verses
prefixed by him to LUCASTA, 1649: -
"Those by the landed have been writ,
Mine's but a younger-brother wit."
As well as the subjoined lines by Lovelace in the poem entitled,
"To Lucasta, from Prison," (see p. 44 of present edition): -
"Next would I court my LIBERTY,
And then my birthright, PROPERTY."
There is evidence to prove that Lovelace was on intimate terms
with some of the wits of his time, and that he had friendly
relations with many of them - such as Hall, Rawlins, Lenton, and
particularly the Cottons. John Tatham, the City Poet, and author
of THE FANCIES THEATER, 1640, knew him well, and addressed to him
some stanzas, not devoid of merit, during his stay abroad.
In 1643, Henry Glapthorne, a celebrated dramatist and poet
of the same age, dedicated to Lovelace his poem of WHITEHALL,
printed in that year in a quarto pamphlet, with elegies
on the Earls of Bedford and Manchester. The pages
of LUCASTA bear testimony to the acquaintance of the author
with Anthony Hodges of New College, Oxford, translator of
CLITOPHON AND LEUCIPPE from the Greek of Achilles Tatius
(or rather probably from a Latin version of the original),
and with other members of the University.
Although it is stated by Wood that LUCASTA was prepared for the
press by Lovelace himself, on his return from the Continent in
1648, it is impossible to believe that any care was bestowed on the
correction of the text, or on the arrangement of the various pieces
which compose the volume: nor did his brother Dudley Posthumus, who
edited the second part of the book in 1659, perform his task in any
degree better. In both instances, the printer seems to have been
suffered to do the work in his own way, and very infamously he has
done it. To supply all the short-comings of the author and his
literary executor at this distance of time, is, unfortunately, out
of the power of any editor; but in the present republication I have
taken the liberty of rearranging the poems, to a certain extent in
the order in which it may be conjectured that they were written;
and where Lovelace contributed commendatory verses to other works,
either before or after the appearance of the first portion of
LUCASTA, the two texts have been collated, and improved readings
been occasionally obtained.
The few poems, on which the fame of Lovelace may be said to rest,
are emanations not only of the stirring period in which he lived,
but of the peculiar circumstances into which he was thrown
at different epochs of his life. Lovelace had not the melodious
and exquisite taste of Herrick, the wit of Suckling, or the power
of Randolph (so often second only to his master Jonson).
Mr. Singer has praised the exuberant fancy of Lovelace; but,
in my thinking, Lovelace was inferior in fancy, as well as in
grace, both to Carew and the author of HESPERIDES. Yet Lovelace
has left behind him one or two things, which I doubt if any of
those writers could have produced, and which our greatest poets
would not have been ashamed to own. Winstanley was so far right in
instituting a comparison between Lovelace and Sydney, that it is
hard to name any one in the entire circle of early English
literature except Sydney and Wither, who could have attempted, with
any chance of success, the SONG TO ALTHEA FROM PRISON; and how
differently Sydney at least would have handled it! We know what
Herrick would have made of it; it would have furnished the theme
for one more invocation to Julia. From Suckling we should have had
a bantering playfulness, or a fescennine gaiety, equally unsuited
to the subject. Waller had once an opportunity of realizing the
position, which has been described by his contemporary in immortal
stanzas; but Waller, when he was under confinement, was thinking
too much of his neck to write verses with much felicity, and
preferred waiting, till he got back to Beaconsfield (when his
inspiration had evaporated), to pour out his feelings to Lady
Dorothy or Lady Sophia. Wither's song, "Shall I wasting in
Despair," is certainly superior to the SONG TO ALTHEA. Wither was
frequently equal to Lovelace in poetical imagery and sentiment, and
he far excelled him in versification. The versification of
Lovelace is indeed more rugged and unmusical than that of any other
writer of the period, and this blemish is so conspicuous throughout
LUCASTA, and is noticeable in so many cases, where it might have
been avoided with very little trouble, that we are naturally led to
the inference that Lovelace, in writing, accepted from indolence or
haste, the first word which happened to occur to his mind. Daniel,
Drayton, and others were, it is well known, indefatigable revisers
of their poems; they "added and altered many times," mostly
for the better, occasionally for the worse. We can scarcely
picture to ourselves Lovelace blotting a line, though it would
have been well for his reputation, if he had blotted many.
In the poem of the LOOSE SARABAND (p. 34) there is some resemblance
to a piece translated from Meleager in Elton's SPECIMENS OF CLASSIC
POETS, i. 411, and entitled by Elton "Playing at Hearts."
"Love acts the tennis-player's part,
And throws to thee my panting heart;
Heliodora! ere it fall,
Let desire catch swift the ball:
Let her in the ball-court move,
Follow in the game with love.
If thou throw me back again,
I shall of foul play complain."
And an address to the Cicada by the same writer, (IBID. i. 415)
opens with these lines: -
"Oh, shrill-voiced insect that, with dew-drops sweet
Inebriate, dost in desert woodlands sing."
In the poem called "The Grasshopper" (p. 94), the author speaks
of the insect as
"Drunk ev'ry night with a delicious tear,
Dropped thee from heaven." - -
The similarity, in each case, I believe to have been entirely
accidental: nor am I disposed to think that Lovelace was under any
considerable or direct obligations to the classics. I have taken
occasion to remark that Lovelace seems to have helped to furnish
a model to Cleveland, who carried to an extraordinary length that
fondness for words and figures derived from the alchymist's
vocabulary; but as regards the author of LUCASTA himself, it may
be asserted that there are few writers whose productions exhibit
less of book-lore than his, and even in those places, where he has
employed phrases or images similar to some found in Peele,
Middleton, Herrick, and others, there is great room to question,
whether the circumstance can be treated as amounting to more than
a curious coincidence.
The Master of Dulwich College has obligingly informed me,
that the picture of ALTHEA, as well as that of Lovelace himself,
bequeathed by Cartwright the actor to Dulwich College in 1687,
bears no clue to date of composition, or to the artist's name,
and that it does not assist in the identification of the lady.
This is the more vexatious, inasmuch as it seems probable that
ALTHEA, whoever she was, became the poet's wife, after LUCASTA'S
marriage to another. The CHLOES, &c. mentioned in the following
pages were merely more or less intimate acquaintances of Lovelace,
like the ELECTRA, PERILLA, CORINNA, &c. of Herrick. But at the
same time an obscurity has hitherto hung over some of the persons
mentioned under fictitious names in the poems of Lovelace,
which a little research and trouble would have easily removed.
For instance, no one who reads "Amarantha, a Pastoral,"
doubts that LUCASTA and AMARANTHA are one and the same person.
ALEXIS is Lovelace himself. ELLINDA is a female friend of
the poet, who occasionally stayed at her house, and on one
occasion (p. 79) had a serious illness there. ELLINDA marries
AMYNTOR, under which disguise, I suspect, lurks the well known
Maecenas of his time, Endymion Porter. If Porter be AMYNTOR, of
course ELLINDA must be the Lady Olivia Porter, his wife. ARIGO
(see the poem of AMYNTOR'S GROVE) signifies Porter's friend,
Henry Jermyn. It may be as well to add that the LETTICE mentioned
at p. 121, was the Lady Lettice Goring, wife of Lovelace's friend,
and third daughter of Richard Boyle, first Earl of Cork. This lady
died before her husband, to whom she brought no issue.
The following lines are prefixed to FONS LACHRYMARUM, &c.
by John Quarles, 1648, 8vo., and are subscribed, as will be seen,
R. L.; they may be from the pen of Lovelace; but, if so,
it is strange that they were not admitted, with other productions
of a similar character, into the volume published by the poet
himself in 1649, or into that edited by his brother in 1659.
TO MY DEAR FRIEND THE AUTHOR.
The Son begins to rise, the Father's set:
Heav'n took away one light, and pleas'd to let
Another rise. Quarles, thy light's divine,
And it shall teach Darkness it self to shine.
Each word revives thy Father's name, his art
Is well imprinted in thy noble heart.
I've read thy pleasing lines, wherein I find
The rare Endeavors of a modest mind.
Proceed as well as thou hast well begun,
That we may see the Father by the Son.
Arms of Lovelace of Bethersden: Gules, on a chief indented argent,
three martlets sable.
Pedigree of the family of Richard Lovelace, the poet.
Richard Lovelace, of Queenhithe (temp. Hen. VI.).
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
! ! !
Richard Lovelace, William Lovelace John (ancestor of the
d. s. p. (ob. 1501). Lords Lovelace, of
! Hurley (co. Berks).
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
John William Lovelace.
William Lovelace, Serjeant at Law, ob. 1576.
- - - - - - - - - - - -
Sir William Lovelace, ob.1629===Elizabeth, daughter of
(according to Berry). ! Edward Aucher, Esq., of
- - - - - - - - - - -
Sir William Lovelace===Anne, daughter and heir of
! Sir William Barnes, of Woolwich.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
! ! ! ! ! !
Richard===? Althea. ! William. ! Dudley.===Mary Johanna===Robert
Lovelace,! ! ! ! Lovelace, ! Caesar
born ! Francis. Thomas. ! (? his ! Esq.
1618 ! ! cousin). !
! ! !
! A daughter, !
! b. 1678. !
Margaret===Henry Coke, Esq. 5th - - - - - - - - - -
! son of the Chief ! ! !
! Justice, and ancestor Anne. Juliana. Johanna.
! of the Earls of Leicester.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
! ! ! !
Richard. Ciriac. . . . . . . . .
The above has been partly derived from a communication to the
GENTLEMAN'S MAGAZINE for Dec. 1791, by Sir Egerton Brydges,
who chiefly compiled it from Hasted, compared with Berry's
KENT GENEALOGIES, 474, where there are a few inaccuracies.
It is, of course, a mere skeleton-tree, and furnishes no
information as to the collateral branches, the connexion between
the houses of Stanley and Lovelace, &c. Sir Egerton Brydges'
series of articles on Lovelace in the GENTLEMAN'S MAGAZINE, with
the exception of that from which the foregoing table is taken,
does not contain much, if anything, that is new. On the 3rd of
May, 1577, Henry Binneman paid "vi and a copie" to the
Stationers' Company for the right to print "the Briefe Course of
the Accidents of the Deathe of Mr. Serjeant Lovelace;" and on the
30th of August following, Richard Jones obtained a licence to print
"A Short Epitaphe of Serjeant Lovelace." This was the same person
who is described in the pedigree as dying in 1576. His death
happened, no doubt, like that of Sir Robert Bell and others, at the
Oxford Summer assizes for 1576. See Stow's ANNALES, fol. 1154.
In 1563, Barnaby Googe the poet dedicated his EGLOGS, EPITAPHES,
AND SONNETTES, NEWLY WRITTEN, to "the Ryght Worshypfull M. Richard
Lovelace, Esquier, Reader of Grayes Inne."
The following is a list of the members of the Lovelace family
who belonged to the Honourable Society of Gray's Inn from 1541
to 1646: -
Thomas Lovelace, admitted 1541.
William Lovelace, " 1548. Called to the bar in 1551.
Richard Lovelace, " 1557. Reader in 1563. Barnaby Googe's
Lancelot Lovelace, " 1571.
William Lovelace, " 1580.
Lancelot Lovelace, " 1581. Recorder of Canterbury,
ob. 1640, aet. 78.
Francis Lovelace, " 1609. Perhaps the same who was Recorder
of Canterbury in 1638.
Francis Lovelace " 1640. Probably the poet's younger
(of Canterbury), brother.
William Lovelace, " 1646.
For these names and dates I am indebted to the courtesy
of the Steward of Gray's Inn.
Sir William Lovelace, the poet's grandfather who, according to
Berry, died in 1629, was a correspondent of Sir Dudley Carleton
(see CALENDARS OF STATE PAPERS, DOMESTIC SERIES, 1611-18, pp. 443,
521, 533; Ibid. 1618-23, p. 17). It appears from some Latin lines
before the first portion of LUCASTA, that the poet's father served
with distinction in Holland, and probably it was this circumstance
which led to Lovelace himself turning his attention in a similar
direction: for the latter was on service in the Low Countries,
perhaps under his father (of whose death we do not know the date,
though Hasted intimates that he fell at the Gryll), when his friend
Tatham, afterwards the city poet, addressed to him some verses
printed in a volume entitled OSTELLA (printed in 1650).
Mr. A. Keightley, Registrar of the Charterhouse, with his
usual kindness, examined for me the books of the institution,
in the hope of finding the date of Lovelace's admission, &c.,
but without success. Mr. Keightley has suggested to me that
perhaps Lovelace was not on the foundation, which is of course
highly probable, and which, as Mr. Keightley seems to think,
may account for the omission of his name from the registers.
"He was matriculated at Gloucester Hall, June 27, 1634, as
"filius Gul. Lovelace de Woolwich in
Com. Kant. arm. au. nat. 16.'" - Dr. Bliss,
in a note on this passage in his edition of the ATHENAE.
Bethersden is a parish in the Weald of Kent, eastward
of Smarden, near Surrenden. "The manor of Lovelace," says Hasted
(HISTORY OF KENT, iii. 239), "is situated at a very small distance
SOUTH-WESTWARD from the church [of Bethersden]. It was in early
times the property of a family named Grunsted, or Greenstreet,
as they were sometimes called; the last of whom, HENRY DE GRUNSTED,
a man of eminent repute, as all the records of this county testify,
in the reigns of both King Edward II. and III., passed away this
manor to KINET, in which name it did not remain long; for WILLIAM
KINET, in the 41st year of King Edward III., conveyed it by sale
to JOHN LOVELACE, who erected that mansion here, which from hence
bore his name in addition, being afterwards styled BETHERSDEN-LOVELACE,
from which sprang a race of gentlemen, who, in the
military line, acquired great reputation and honour, and by their
knowledge in the municipal laws, deserved well of the Commonwealth;
from whom descended those of this name seated at BAYFORD in
SITTINGBORNE, and at KINGSDOWN in this county, the Lords Lovelace
of Hurley, and others of the county of Berks." The same writer,
in his HISTORY OF CANTERBURY, has preserved many memorials
of the connexion of the Lovelaces from the earliest times
with Canterbury and its neighbourhood. William Lovelace,
in the reign of Philip and Mary, died possessed of the mansion
belonging to the abbey of St. Lawrence, near Canterbury;
after the death of his son William, it passed to other hands.
In 1621, Lancelot Lovelace, Esq., was Recorder of Canterbury;
in 1638, Richard Lovelace, Esq., held that office; and in the
year of the Restoration, Richard Lovelace, the poet's brother, was
Recorder. In the Public Library at Plymouth, there is a folio MS.
(mentioned in Mr. Halliwell's catalogue, 1853), containing
"Original Papers of the Molineux and LOVELACE Families." I regret
that I have not had an opportunity of inspecting it. Mr. Halliwell
does not seem to have examined the volume; at all events, that
gentleman does not furnish any particulars as to the nature of the
contents, or as to the period to which the papers belong. This
information, in the case of a MS. deposited in a provincial library
in a remote district, would have been peculiarly valuable. It is
possible that the documents refer only to the Lovelaces of Hurley,
"The Humble Petition of the Gentry, Ministers, and
Commonalty, for the county of Kent, agreed upon at the General
Assizes for that county." See JOURNALS OF THE HOUSE OF LORDS, iv.
675-6-7. The "framers and contrivers" of this petition were Sir
Edward Dering, Bart., of Surrenden-Dering; Sir Roger Twysden, the
well-known scholar; Sir George Strode, and Mr. Richard Spencer. On
the 21st May, 1641, Dering had unsuccessfully attempted to bring in
a bill for the ABOLITION of church government by bishops,
archbishops, &c., whereas one of the articles of the petition of
1642 (usually known as DERING'S PETITION) was a prayer for the
restoration of the Liturgy and the maintenance of the episcopal
bench in its integrity. A numerously signed petition had also
been addressed to both Houses by the county in 1641, in which
the strongest reasons were given for the adoption of Dering's
proposed act. From 1641 to 1648, indeed, the Houses were
overwhelmed by Kentish petitions of various kinds. This portion
of Wood's narrative is confirmed by Marvell's lines prefixed to
LUCASTA, 1649: -
"And one the Book prohibits, because Kent
Their first Petition by the Authour sent."
"Sir William Boteler, of Kent, returning about the beginning of
APRIL 1642, from his attendance (being then Gentleman Pentioner)
on the king at YORKE, then celebrating St. GEORGE'S feast,
was by the earnest solicitation of the Gentry of Kent ingaged
to joyn with them in presenting the most honest and famous Petition
of theirs to the House of Commons, delivered by Captain RICHARD
LOVELACE, for which service the Captain was committed Prisoner to
the GATE HOUSE, and SIR WILLIAM BOTELER to the Fleet, from whence,
after some weeks close imprisonment, no impeachment in all that
time brought in against him [Boteler], many Petitions being
delivered and read in the House for his inlargement, he was at last
upon bail of 20,000 [15,000] remitted to his house
in LONDON, to attend DE DIE IN DIEM the pleasure of the House." - MERCURIUS
RUSTICUS, 1646 (edit. 1685, pp. 7, 8). The fact was
that, although on the 7th of April, 1642, the Kentish petition in
favour of the Liturgy, &c. had been ordered by the House of Commons
to be burned by the common hangman (PARLIAMENTS AND COUNCILS
OF ENGLAND, 1839, p. 384), Boteler and Lovelace had the temerity,
on the 30th of the same month, to come up to London, and present it
again to the House. It was this which occasioned their committal.
In the VERNEY PAPERS (Camd. Soc. 1845, p. 175) there is the