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noble Knight, Sir John Salisburie. Dignum laude virum Musa vetat mori. MDCI.'

The significance of this slight piece, which, as indicated, is signed in Shakespeare's full name, remains an unsolved problem ; but its authenticity is generally accepted. It has the air of a trifle, thrown off perhaps at the urgency of a resolute Album-maker, whose hackneyed emblematics, allegorical mystifications, and Arthurian legend-lore can have had few attractions for the Shakespeare of 1600. Critics of repute have read high romance in these cloudy symbols; and Chester himself doubtless intended to convey a very serious meaning, whether it concerned the love-affairs of Elizabeth with Essex or another, or some private history to which we have no clue ; 1 but the team of distinguished poets whom he persuaded to be yoked to his allegorical chariot regarded their enterprise, one surmises, as a pleasant jest, though they carried their parts through with appro priate decorum to the end.

1 Dr. Grosart, in his valuable Sidney's obsequies by turtleedition (New Shaks. Soc. 1878), dove, swan, phoenix, and eagle,' ardently defends the Essex- as described in Matthew Roy. theory. Mr. Lee has pointed don's elegy on Sidney appended out the resemblance between to Spenser's Colin Clout's Come the symbolism of this poem and Home again, 1595 (W. Shake• the parts figuratively played in speare, p. 184).

THE PHENIX AND THE

TURTLE

10

LET the bird of loudest lay,
On the sole Arabian tree,
Herald sad and trumpet be,
To whose sound chaste wings obey.
But thou shrieking harbinger,
Foul precurrer of the fiend,
Augur of the fever's end,
To this troop come thou not near !
From this session interdict
Every fowl of tyrant wing,
Save the eagle, feather'd king:
Keep the obsequy so strict.
Let the priest in surplice white,
That defunctive music can,
Be the death-divining swan,
Lest the requiem lack his right
And thou treble-dated crow,
That thy sable gender makest
With the breath thou givest and takest,

’Mongst our mourners shalt thou go. 14. can, is accomplished in.

lived as man. 17. treble-dated, thrice as long- 18. gender, race.

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25. as, as if. 37. Property, individual nature, personal identity.

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