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and of his way of speech in both of these old plays, “ The First Part of the Contention " and the “ True Tragedy." *
* Mr. Dyce, in his edition published in 1850 of Marlowe, whose works no contemporary had attempted to collect,--there was, indeed, no collection of them before that made by George Robinson in 1826,Mr. Dyce included “The First Part of the Contention” and “The True Tragedie" among plays of which Marlowe probably was the chief author. “Greene,” he said, “may have contributed his share, so also may Lodge, and so may Peele have done ; but in both pieces there are scenes characterised by a vigour of conception and expression, to which, as their undisputed works demonstrably prove, neither Greene, nor Lodge, nor Peele could possibly have risen. Surely, therefore, we have full warrant for supposing that Marlowe was very largely concerned in the composition of 'The First Part of the Contention and • The True Tragedie,' and the following instances of their occasional close resemblance to his “Edward the Second' are confirmative of that supposition, however little such parallels might be thought to weigh if they formed the only grounds for it "I tell thee, Poull, when thou didst runne at tilt And stol'st away our ladaies hearts in France.'
-"* First Part of Contention.'
« • Tell Isabel, the queen, I looked not thus When for her sake, I ran at tilt in France.'
_". Edward II.' " " Madame, I bring you newes from Ireland;
The wild O'Nele, my lord, is vp in armes,
-". First Part of Contention.'
"" The wild O'Nele, with swarms of Irish kerns,
_"Edward II. “Stern Fawconbridge commands the narrow seas.'
-“True Tragedie.' "• The haughty Dane commands the narrow seas.'
-" ' Edward II.' " Thus yields the cedar to the axes edge, Whose armes gave shelter to the princlie eagle.'
-" True Tragedie.'
Other writers have found good grounds for a presumption that Robert Greene had a hand in the writing of these plays. It is noticeable that when Greene in his last days wrote the often-quoted passage of complaint against actors who dealt as they pleased with work of poets, and indicated Shakespeare as a chief offender in that way, he levelled at Shakespeare as an “upstart crow beautified with our feathers," a parody of a line in this “ Third Part of King Henry VI.,” “O, tiger's heart, wrapped in a woman's hide”
-reading it “player's hide.” In that context of complaint against Shakespeare as an actor meddling with the works of poets, Greene showed that he had this play present to his mind. The line that put a tiger's heart into a woman's hide is in the old play, and, so far, does not seem to have been added by Shakespeare, although Greene may have accounted it Shakespearean bombast.
Greene died on the third of September, 1592. Before that date, therefore, all the Three Parts of “King Henry VI.” were in existence. My conjecture is that Shakespeare's retouching grew bolder as its worth obtained more recognition, and that some part of his revision of the “ True Tragedie ”—work very recent in September, 1592, and, therefore, a fresh grief to Greene—became inseparable from the play, and remained in it when it was first printed in
" What, will the aspiring blood of Lancaster
-"*True Tragedie.' “' Frown'st thou thereat, aspiring Lancaster?'
_" · Edward II.' “ [And), highly scorning that the lowly earth Should drink his blood, mounts up into the air.'
-" Edward II.'”
1595. I do not suppose there were any touches by Shakespeare in the “ First Part of the Contention ”—at least three years old when printed in 1594. But the “True Tragedie" was, I think, printed in 1595 with passages at the close which Shakespeare had made inseparable from it, and which were designed by him as preparation for his treatment of the history of Richard III. Upon that sequel of civil war he then went on to shape, himself alone, a fourth and last play for the completion of the series. When the play of “Richard III.” was in existence—as it was in 1595—the “True Tragedy” would be acted or read with the passages indicating the dramatic motive of the next and best play of the set. These passages I can ascribe only to Shakespeare, though they do occur in the old play.
EXEUNT LODGE, PEELE, AND GREENE.
DURING his voyage with Captain Clarke to the Canary Islands, Thomas Lodge * wrote for his own pastime the tale of “Rosalynde," first published in 1590, upon which Shakespeare founded afterwards his play "Rosa; of “As You Like It.” Lodge's tale had for its full title, “Rosalynde ; Euphues Golden Legacie : found after his Death in his Cell at Silexedra. Bequeathed to Philautus Sonnes, noursed up with their father in England.” The style follows the fashion of the Euphuists, and draws aid from antithesis, alliteration, similes, and all ingenious subtleties that then were in favour. Even the story is, as its title shows, directly associated with Lyly's book, by being set forth as a bequest of the moralising Euphues to the sons of his friend Philautus. But that fashionable daintiness of speech was not without its grace on the lips of a poet. Lodge was a true poet, though his path was on the lower slopes of Parnassus, and his "Rosalynde ” has much natural beauty that is in some sense heightened by the artifices of its style. So the extravagances of Elizabethan dress do, in some sense, make a pleasant part of our impression of the vigorous men and women who did strenuous work the better for not turning their imaginations out of doors. Of Lodge's “Rosalynde” more will be said when we speak of the play
The Last Voyage of Thomas Cavendish.
Shakespeare founded upon it, with two characteristic changes in the action of the story.
In the year before “Rosalynde,” Lodge had published “Scillaes Metamorphosis : enterlaced with the Unfortunate Love of Glaucus, whereunto is annexed the 'Delectable Discourse of the discontented Satyre, with sundrie other most absolute Poems and Sonnets.'” In the year after “Rosalynde " appeared Lodge's “Catharos, Diogenes in his singularities.”
Lodge had then gone to sea with Thomas Cavendish in his last voyage. Cavendish—the second Englishman who
had sailed round the globe ---set out from Plymouth on the twenty-sixth of August, 1991, with two barks and three tall ships, one of them
his own old ship The Desire, now commanded by John Davis, the explorer of the Arctic seas. They were bound for the South Seas, the Philippines, and the coast of China. After many sufferings, parted from Davis, Cavendish died at sea on the voyage home of his ship, The Leicester. Davis, having spent time in endeavours to find Cavendish, reached the coast of Ireland, at Bearhaven, on the eleventh of June, 1593, with only fifteen survivors of the seventy-six who sailed from England with him, and they so weak that they could not heave or take in a sail.
Lodge's friend, Robert Greene, published for him, in 1592, “ Euphues Shadow ; the Battle of the Senses.” Lodge
himself, after his return, published, in 1593, Other Writings “Phillis, honoured with Pastoral sonnets, eleof Lodge.
gies, and amorous delights,” and in the same year, “The Life and death of William Longbeard, the most famous and witty English traitor, born in the City of London. Accompanied with many other the most pleasant and prettie Histories." He had already produced a “Life of Robert, Duke of Normandy, surnamed Robin the Devil.” His two plays-one wholly his own, the other written in