by Thomas Watson

Sonnets 81- 100


Centurie of

Transcribed by Barboura Flues.
Web version created by Robert Brazil.
copyright © 2002

Some, but not all, footnotes are derived from the original publication.
Notes that derive from Graves' The Greek Myths are marked (Graves).

Notes from the transcriber are marked (BF).
Words/phrases described in the glossary are underlined.

[Section 80 is repeated here as it is the introduction to the poems that follow.]
80 - 100


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T .

All such as are but of indifferent capacity, and have some skill in Arithmetic, by viewing this Sonnet following compiled by rule and number, into the form of a pillar, may soon judge how much art and study the Author hath bestowed in the same. Wherein as there are placed many pretty observations, so these which I will set down, may be marked for the principal, if any man have such idle leisure to look it over, as the Author had, when he framed it. First therefore it is to be noted that the whole pillar (except the basis or foot thereof) is by relation of either half to the other Antithetical or Antisyllabical. Secondly, how this poesy (Amare est infanire) runneth twice throughout ye Column, if ye gather but the first letter of every whole verse orderly (excepting the two last) and then in like manner take but the last letter of every one of the said 3 verses, as they stand. Thirdly is to be observed that every verse, but the two last, doth end with the same letter it beginneth, and yet throughout the whole a true time is perfectly observed, although not after our accustomed manner. Fourthly, that the foot of the pillar is Orchematicall that is to say, founded by transilition or over-skipping of number by rule and order, as from 1 to 3, 5, 7, and 9; the secret virtue whereof may be learned in Trithemius,(1) as namely by tables of transilition to decipher anything that is written by secret transposition of letters, be it never so cunningly conveyed. And lastly, this observation is not to be neglected, that when all the foresaid particulars as performed, the whole pillar is but just 18 verses, as will appear in the page following it, Per modum expansionis.

1. Polygraphiae suae, lib. 5.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

A Pasquine Piller erected in the despite of Love.

1     At
A   2   last, though
3   late,      farewell
4   old  well  a  day  :  A
m   5   Mirth or mischance strike
a 6   up a newe alarM, And    m
7   Cypria          la          nemica
r   8     miA   Retire   to   Cyprus   Isle,     a
e   9   and ceafeth thy waRR, Else must thou prove how   r
E   10   Reason   can   by   charmE     Enforce   to   flight   thy   e
 11    blindfold  brat  and  thee.  So frames it with me now,    E
t   12    that   I   confesS,  The   life  I   led  in  Love  deuoid   s / t
I   12   of resT,  It  was  a  Hell,  where  none  felt  more  than  I,  I
n/s    11      Nor   any   with   like   miseries   forlorN.      Since    n
a   10     therefore   now   my   woes   are   wexed   lesS,  And   s
    9    Reason       bids       me    leave    old    welladA,      a
n      8      No    longer    shall     the    world    laugh    me
i   7   to fcorN: I'le choose a path that   n
r   6   shall not lead awrie. Rest   i
   5   then with me from your
 4  blind Cupids carR  r
e.   3   Each one of
2   you, that
1   serve,
3   and would be
5   freE. H'is dooble thrall   e.
7   that liu's as Love thinks best, whose
9   hande still Tyrant like to hurt is prefte.(1)

1. Huius Columnae Basis, pro silla- barum numero et linearum proportione
est Orchematica..


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.
Expansio Columnae praecedentis.

A   At last, though late, farewell old wellada;             A
m   Mirth for mischance strike up a new alarm;          m
a   And Ciprya la nemica mia                                  a
r   Retire to Cyprus Ile and cease thy war,                  r
e   Else must thou prove how Reason can by charm   e
E   Enforce to flight thy blindfold brat and thee.          E
s   So frames it with me now, that I confess                s
t   The life I led in Love devoid of rest                        t
I   It was a Hell, where none felt more than I,             I
n   Nor any with like miseries forlorn.                         n
s   Since therefore now my woes are waxed less,       s
a   And Reason bids me leave old wellada,                a
n   No longer shall the world laugh me to scorn:         n
i    I'll choose a path that shall not lead awry.              i
r   Rest then with me from your blind Cupid's car        r
e   Each one of you that serve and would be free.       e
,,   His double thrall that Liv's as Love thinks best (1) ,,
,,   Whose hand still Tyrant-like to hurt is press't,        ,,

1. (in Greek). Sophoe, in Aia. flagell.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In this Sonnet the Author hath imitated one of Ronsard's Odes; which beginneth thus
  Les Muses lierent un iour
  De chaisnes de roses Amour,    
  Et pour le garder, le donnerent
  Aus Graces et a la Beaute:
  Qui voyans so destoyaute,
  Sus Parnase l'emprisonnerent, etc.

The Muses not long since entrapping Love
In chains of roses linked all awry,
Gave Beauty charge to watch in their behove
With Graces three, lest he should wend away:
   Who fearing yet he would escape at last,
   On high Parnassus top they clapp'd him fast.
When Venus understood her Son was thrall,
She made post-haste to have God Vulcan's aid,
Sold him her Gems, and Ceston therewithal,     [2]
To ransom home her Son that was betrayed;
   But all in vain, the Muses made no store
   Of gold, but bound him faster than before.
Therefore, all you whom Love did ere abuse,
Come clap your hands with me, to see him thrall,
Whose former deeds no reason can excuse,
For killing those which hurt him not at all:
  Myself by him was lately led awry,
   Though now at last I force my love to die.

1. Au liure de ses melanges.
2. V: Martis reuocetur amor, summique Tonantis, A te Juno petat Ceston, et ipsa Venus. Martialis.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The Author in this Sonnet expresseth his malice towards Venus and her Son Cupid, by currying favor with Diana, and by suing to have the self same office in her walks and forest, which sometimes her chaste and best-beloved Hippolytus enjoyed. Which Hippolytus (as Servius witnesseth) died by the false deceit of his Step-mother Phaedra, for not yielding over himself unto her incestuous love: whereupon Seneca writeth thus,
  Iuuenisque castus crimine incesta iacet,
 Pudicus, infons.

Diana, since Hippolytus is dead,
Let me enjoy thy favor, and his place:
My might through will shall stand thee in some stead,
To drive blind Love and Venus from thy chase:
   For where they lately wrought me mickle woe,
   I vow me now to be their mortal foe.
And do thou not mistrust my chastity
When I shall range amid'st thy virgin train:
My rains are chasten'd so through misery,
That Love with me can nere prevail again:
   [That] The child whose finger once hath felt the fire,
   [That] To play therewith will have but small desire.
Besides, I vow to bear a watchful eye,
Discov'ring such as pass along thy groan;
If Jupiter himself come loit'ring by,
I'll call thy crew and bid them fly from Jove;
   For if they stay, he will obtain at last,
   What now I loathe, because my love is past.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The chiefest substance of this Sonnet is borrowed out of certain Latin verses of Strozza, a nobleman of Italy, and one of the best Poets in all his age: who in describing Metaphorically to his friend Antonius the true form of his amorous estate, writeth thus:
   Unda hic sunt Lachrima, Venti supiriae, Remi
  Vota, Error vetum, Mens malefana Ratis;
  Spes Temo, Curae Comites, Confiantia Amoris
  Est malus, Dolor eft Anchora, Nauita Amor,

The soldier worn with wars, delights in peace;
The pilgrim in his ease when toils are past;
The ship to gain the port when storms do cease;
And I rejoice, from Love discharg'd at last;
   Whom while I serv'd, peace, rest, and land I lost,
   With grievesome wars, with toils, with storms betoss't.
Sweet liberty now gives me leave to sing,
What world it was, where Love the rule did bear;
How foolish Chance by lots rul'd everything;
How Error was mainsail, each wave a Tear;          ,,
   The master, Love himself; deep sighs were wind;  ,,
   Cares row'd with vows the ship unmerry mind,     ,,
False hope as helm oft turn'd the boat about;            ,,
Inconstant faith stood up for middle mast                ,,
Despair the cable twisted all with Doubt                    ,,
Held Griping Grief the piked Anchor fast;               ,,
   Beauty was all the rocks. But I at last,                   ,,
   Am now twice free, and all my love is past.            ,,


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The sense of this Sonnet is for the most part taken out of a letter which Aeneas Sylvius wrote unto his friend, to persuade him that albeit he lately had published the wanton love of Lucretia andEuryalus, yet he liked nothing less than such fond Love; and that he now repented him of his own labor over-idly bestowed in describing the same.

Sweet liberty restores my wonted joy,
And bids me tell how painters set to view
The form of Love. They paint him but a Boy,
As working most in minds of youthful crew:
    They set him naked all, as wanting shame
    To keep his secret parts or t'hide the same.
They paint him blind in that he cannot spy
What diff'rence is twixt virtue and default.
With Bow in hand, as one that doth defy,
And cumber heedless hearts with fierce assault:
   His other hand doth hold a brand of fire,
   In sign of heat he makes through hot desire.
They give him wings to fly from place to place,
To note that all are wav'ring like the wind,
Whose liberty fond Love doth once deface.
This form to Love old painters have assign'd:
   Whose fond effects if any list to prove,
   Where I make end, let them begin to Love.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The Author in the first staff of this Sonnet expresseth how Love first went beyond him, by persuading him that all was gold which glistered. In the second, he telleth how time brought him to truth, and Truth to Reason, by whose good counsel he found the way from worse to better, and did overgo the malice of blind Fortune. In the third staff, he craveth pardon at every man for the offenses of his youth; and to Love, the only cause of his long error, he giveth his ultimum vale.

Youth made a fault through lightness of Belief,
Which fond Belief Love placed in my breast:
But now I find that Reason gives relief;
And time shows Truth and Wit that's bought is best;
   Muse not therefore although I change my vein,
   He runs too far which never turns again.
Henceforth my mind shall have a watchful eye,
I'll scorn Fond Love, and practice of the same:
The wisdom of my heart shall soon descry
Each thing that's good, from what deserveth blame:
   My song shall be; Fortune hath spit her spite,
    And Love can hurt no more withal his might.
Therefore, all you to whom my course is known,
Think better comes, and pardon what is past:
I find that all my wildest Oats are sown,
And joy to see what now I see at last;
   And since that Love was cause I trod awry,
   I here take off his Bells, and let him fly.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

This whole Sonnet is nothing else but a brief and pithy moral, and made after the self same vein with that which is last before it. The two first staffs, (excepting only the two first verses of all) express the Author's alteration of mind and life, and his change from his late vain estate and follies in love, by a metaphor of the ship-man, which by shipwreck's chance is happily restored on a sudden unto that land which he a long time had most wished for.

I long maintained war gainst Reason's rule,
I wander'd pilgrim-like in Error's maze
I sat in Folly's ship, and play'd the fool,
Till on Repentance rock her sides did craze:
    Herewith I learn by hurts already past,
    [Till] That each extreme will change itself at last.
This shipwreck's chance hath set me on a shelf,
Where neither Love can hurt me any more,
Nor Fortune's hand, though she enforce herself;
Discretion grants to set me safe on shore,
   Where guile is fetter'd fast and wisdom rules,
    To punish heedless hearts and willful fools,
And since the heav'ns have better lot assign'd,
I fear to burn, as having felt the fire;
And proof of harms so changed hath my mind,
That wit and will to Reason do retire:
   Not Venus now, nor love with all his snares
   Can draw my wits to woes at unawares.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The two first staffs of this Sonnet are altogether sentential, and every one verse of them is grounded upon a divers reason and authority from the rest. I have thought good for brevity sake, only to set down here the authorities, with figures, whereby to apply every one of them to his due line in order as they stand. 1. Hieronimus: In delicijs difficile est seruare castitatem. 2. Ausonius: dispulit inconsultus amor etc. 3. Seneca: Amor est ociosae causa fellicitudinis. 4. Propertius: Errat, qui finem vefani querit amoris. 5. Horatius: Semper ardentes acuens sagittas. 6. Xenophon: scribit amorem esse igne, et flamma flagrantiorem, quod ignis vrat tangentes, et proxima tantum cremet, amor ex longinquo spectante torreat. 7. Calenti: Plurima Zelotipo sunt in amore mala. 8. Ovidius: Inferet arma tibi saeua rebellis amor. 9. Pontanus: Si vacuum fineret perfidiosus amor. 10. Marullus: Quid tantum lachrimis meis proterue Fusultas puer? 11. Tibullus: At lasciuis amor rixae mala verba ministrat. 12. Virgilius: Bellum foepe petit serus exitiale Cupido.

Love never LOve hath delight in sweet delicious fare; (1)
Love never takes good Counsel for his friend;            (2)
Love author is, and cause of idle care;                       (3)
Love is distraught of wit, and hath no end;                 (4)
   Love shooteth shafts of burning hot desire;             (5)
   Love burneth more than either flame or fire;            (6)
Love doth much harm through jealousy's assault;      (7)
Love once embrac'd will hardly part again;                (8)
Love thinks in breach of faith there is no fault;           (9)
Love makes a sport of others' deadly pain;             (10)
   Love is a wanton Child and loves to brawl.         (11)
   Love with his war brings many souls to thrall.       (12)
These are the smallest faults that lurk in Love.
These are the hurts which I have cause to curse,
These are those truths which no man can disprove,
These are such harms as none can suffer worse.
   All this I write, that others may beware,
   Though now myself twice free from all such care.

1. Hieron.
2. Auson.
3. Seneca.
4. Propert.
5. Horat.
6. Xenoph.
7. Calent.
8. Ovid.
9. Pont.
10. Marull.
11. Tibull.
12. Virgil, de Vino et Venere.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In this Latin passion, the Author translateth, as it were, paraphrastically the Sonnet of Petrarch, which beginneth thus.
  Tennemi Amor anni vent' uno ardendo, [1]
  Licto nel foco, e nel duel pien di speme, etc.
But to make it serve his own turn, he varieth from Petrarch's words, where he declareth how many years he lived in love, as well before as since the death of his beloved Laura. Under which name also the Author, in this Sonnet, specifieth her whom he lately loved.

ME sibi ter binos annos unumque subegit
     Divus Amor; laetusque sui, licet ignibus arsi;
     Spemque habui certam, curis licet ictus acerbis.
Iamgue duos alios exutus amore peregi,
     Ac si sydereos mea Laura volarit in orbes,
     Duxerit et secum veteris penetralia cordis.
Pertaefum tandem vitae me poenitet actae,
     Et pudet erroris pene absumpsisse sub vmbra.
     Seminxa virtutum. Sed quae pars vltima restat,
     Supplice mente tibi tandem, Deus alte, repono,
     Et male transactae deploro tempora vitae,
     Cuius agendus erat meliori tramite cursus,
     Litis in arcendae sludijs, et pace colendae.
Ergo summe Deus, per quem fum clausus in isto
Carcere, ab aeterno saluum sac esse periclo.

1. Sonnet. 313.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In the latter part of this Sonnet the Author imitateth those verses of Horace.
  Me tabula facer
  Votiva paries indicat vuida
  Suspendise potenti
  Vestimenta maris Deo.

Whom also that renowned Florentine M. Agnolo Firenzuela did imitate long ago, both in like manner and matter, as followeth.
  O miseri coloro,
  Che non prouar di donna fdee mai:
  Il pericol, ch'io corsi
  Nel tempestoso mar, nella procella
  Del lor crudel Amore
  Mostrar lo puo la tauoletta posta
  E le vesti ancor molli
  Sospese all tempio del horrendo Dio
  Di questo mar crudele.

Ye captive souls of blindfold Cyprian's boat
Mark with advice in what estate ye stand,
Your Boatman never whistles merry note,
And Folly keeping stern, still puts from land,
   And makes a sport to toss you to and fro
   Twixt sighing winds and surging waves of woe.
On Beauty's rock she runs you at her will,
And holds you in suspense twixt hope and fear,
Where dying oft, yet are you living still,
But such a life as death much better were;
   Be therefore circumspect and follow me,
   When Chance, or change of manners, sets you free.
Beware how you return to seas again:
Hang up your votive tables in the choir
Of Cupid's Church, in witness of the pain
You suffer now by forced fond desire:
   Then hang your through-wet garments on the wall,
   And sing with me, That Love is mix'd with gall.

1. Ad Pyrrham ode. 5.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

Here the Author by comparing the tyrannous delights and deeds of blind Cupid with the honest delights and deeds of other his fellow Goddesses and Gods, doth bless the time and hour that ever he forsook to follow him; whom he confesseth to have been great and forcible in his doings, though but little of stature, and in appearance weakly. Of all the names here mentioned, Hebe is seldomest read, wherefore know they which know it not already, that Hebe (as Servius writeth) is Juno's daughter, having no father, and now wife to Hercules, and Goddess of youth and youthly sporting, and was cup-bearer to Jove till she fell in the presence of all the Gods, so unhappily that they saw her privities, whereupon Jove being angry, substituted Ganymedes into her office and place.

Phoebus delights to view his Laurel Tree;
The Poplar pleaseth Hercules alone;
Melissa mother is, and votrix to the Bee,
Pallas will wear the Olive branch or none;
   Of shepherds and their flock Pallas is Queen;
   And Ceres ripes the corn, was lately green;
To Chloris ev'ry flower belongs of right;
The Dryad Nymphs of woods make chief accompt;
Oreads in hills have their delight;
Diana doth protect each bubbling Fount;
   To Hebe lovely kissing is assign'd;
   To Zephir ev'ry gentle breathing wind.
But what is Love's delight? To hurt each where;
 ,,   He cares not whom, with darts of deep desire;
 ,,   With watchful jealousy, with hope, with fear,
 ,,   With nipping cold and secret flames of fire.
         O happy hour wherein I did forego
         This little God, so great a cause of woe.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In the first and sixth line of this Passion the Author alludeth to two sententious verses in Sophocles; whereof the first is, (passage in Greek) (1)
The second (passage in Greek) (2)
In the other two staffs following, the Author pursueth on his matter, beginning and ending every line with the self same syllable he used in the first: wherein he imitateth some Italian Poets, who more to try their wits [t]han for any other conceit, have written after the like manner.

My love is past, woe worth the day and hour
When to such folly first I did incline,
Whereof the very thought is bitter sour,
And still would hurt, were not my soul divine,
   Or did not Reason teach that care in vain
   For ill once past, which cannot turn again.
My Love is past, blessed the day and hour.
When from so fond estate I did decline,
Wherein was little sweet with mickle sour,
And loss of mind, whose substance is divine.
   Or at the left, expense of time in vain,
   For which expense no Love returneth gain.
My Love is past, wherein was no good hour:
When others joy'd, to cares I did incline,
Whereon I fed, although the taste were sour,
And still believ'd Love was some pow'r divine,
   Or some instinct which could not work in vain,
   Forgetting, Time well spent was double gain.

1. In Oedipo-Colonae.
2. In Trachiniis.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In this Passion the Author hath but augmented the invention of Seraphine, where he writeth in this manner.
  Biastemo quando mai le labbra apersi
  Per dar name a costei, che accid me induce.
  Biastemo il tempo, e quanti giorni ho persi
  A seguitar si tenebrosa luce:
  Biastemo charta, inchiostre, e versi,
  Et quanto Amor per me fama gliaduce;
  Biastemo quando mai la vidi anchora,
  El mese, l'anno, e giorno, el punto, e lhora.

I Curse the time, wherein these lips of mine
Did pray or praise the Dame that was unkind:
I curse both leaf, and ink, and every line
My hand hath writ, in hope to move her mind:
   I curse her hollow heart and flatt'ring eyes,
   Whose sly deceit did cause my mourning cries:
I curse the sugar'd speech and Siren's song,
Wherewith so oft she hath bewitch'd mine ear:
I curse my foolish will, that stay'd so long,
And took delight to bide twixt hope and fear:
   I curse the hour wherein I first began
   By loving looks to prove a witless man:
I curse those days which I have spent in vain,
By serving such an one as recks no right:
I curse each cause of all my secret pain,
Though Love to hear the same have small delight:
   And since the heav'ns my freedom now restore,
   Henceforth I'll live at ease, and love no more.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

A Labyrinth is a place made full of turnings and creeks, where hence, he that is once gotten in can hardly get out again. Of this sort Pliny (1) mentioneth four in the world which were most noble. One in Crete made by Daedalus, at the commandment of king Minos, to shut up the Minotaur in: to which monster the Athenians by league were bound every year to send seven of their children, to be devoured; which was performed till at the last, by the help of Ariadne, Theseus slew the monster. Another he mentioneth to have been in Egypt, which also Pomponius Mela describeth in his first book. The third in Lemnos, wherein were erected a hundred and fifty pillars of singular workmanship. The fourth in Italy, builded by Porsenna king of Etruria, to serve for his sepulcher. But in this Passion the Author alludeth unto that of Crete only.

Though somewhat late, at last I found the way
To leave the doubtful Labyrinth of Love,
Wherein (alas) each minute seem'd a day:
Himself was Minotaur; whose force to prove
   I was enforc'd, till Reason taught my mind
   To stay the beast, and leave him there behind.
But being scaped thus from out his maze,
And past the dang'rous Den so full of doubt,
False Theseus-like, my credit shall I craze,
Forsaking her whose hand did help me out?
   With Ariadne Reason shall not say,
    I sav'd his life, and yet he runs away.
No, no, before I leave the golden rule,
Or laws of her that stood so much my friend,
Or once again will play the loving fool,
The sky shall fall, and all shall have an end:
I wish as much to you that lovers be,
Whose pains will pass, if you beware by me.

1. Lib 36. ca. 13.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

In this Passion, the Author in scoffing bitterly at Venus and her son Cupid, alludeth unto certain verses in Ovid, but inverteth them to another sense than Ovid used, who wrote them upon the death of Tibullus. These are the verses which he imitateth,
   Ecce puer Veneris sert everfamque pharetram,
  Et fractos arcus, et fine luce facem,
  A[d] spice demissis ut eat miserabilis alis,       
  Pectoraque insesta tondat aperta manu, etc.
  Nec minus est confusa Venus, etc.
  Quam inuuenis rupit cum serus inguen aper.

What ails poor Venus now to sit alone
In funeral attire, her wonted hue
Quite chang'd, her smile to tears, her mirth to moan:
As though Adonis' wounds now bled anew,
   Or she with young Julus late return'd
   From seeing her Aeneas' carcass burn'd.
Alack for woe, what ails her little Boy,
To have his tender cheeks besprent with tears,
And sit and sigh, where he was wont to toy?
How haps, no longer he his quiver wears,
   But breaks his Bow, throwing the *shivers by,
   And plucks his wings and lets his firebrand die?
No, Dame and Darling too, ye come too late,
To win me now, as you have done tofore:
I live secure and quiet in estate,
Fully resolv'd from loving any more:
   Go pack for shame from hence to Cyprus Ile,
   And there go play your pranks another while.

1. Elegiar. lib. 1

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The Author in this passion alludeth to the fable of Phineus which is set down at large in the Argonautics of Apollonius, and Valerius Flaccus. He compareth himself unto Phineus, his Mistress unto the Harpies; and his thoughts unto Zetes, and his desires unto Calais, the two twins of Boreas; and the voice of Ne plus vltra spoken from Heaven to Calais and Zetes, unto the Divine grace, which willed him to follow no further the miseries of a Lover's estate, but to profess unfeignedly that his Love is past. And last of all, the Author concludeth against the sour sauce of Love with the French proverb: Pour un plaisir mille douleurs.

The Harpy birds that did in such despite
Grieve and annoy old Phineus so sore,
Where chas'd away by Calais in flight
And by his brother Zetes for evermore;
   Who follow'd them until they heard on high
   A voice, that said, Ye Twins No further fly.
Phineus I am, that so tormented was;
My Laura here I may an Harpy name;
My thoughts and lusts be Sons to Boreas,
Which never ceas'd in following my Dame,
   Till heav'nly Grace said unto me at last,
   Leave fond Delights, and say thy love is past.
My love is past I say, and sing full glad;
My time, alas, misspent in Love I rue,
Wherein few joys, or none at all I had,
But store of woes: I found the proverb true,
   For ev'ry pleasure that in Love is found,
   A thousand woes and more therein abound.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The Author in this passion, telling what Love is, easeth his heart, as it were, by railing outright where he can work no other manner of revenge. The invention hereof, for the most part of the particulars contained, is taken out of certain Latin verses which this Author composed upon Quid Amor. Which because they may well import a passion of the writer, and aptly befit the present title of his over-passed Love, he setteth them down in this next page following, but not as accomptable for one of the hundred passions of this book.

Hark wanton youths, whom Beauty maketh blind,
And learn of me what kind a thing is Love;
Love is a Brain-sick Boy, and fierce by kind;
A Willful Thought, which Reason can not move;
A Flatt'ring Sycophant; a Murd'ring Thief;
A Poison'd choking Bait; a Ticing Grief;
A Tyrant in his Laws; in speech untrue;
A Blindfold Guide; a Feather in the wind;
A right Chameleon for change of hue;                     [1]
A Lame-limb Lust; a Tempest of the mind;
A Breach of Chastity; all virtues' Foe;
A Private war; A Toilsome web of woe;
A Fearful jealousy; a Vain Desire;
A Labyrinth; a Pleasing Misery;
A Shipwracke of man's life; a Smokeless fire;
A Sea of tears; a lasting Lunacy;
A Heavy servitude; a Dropsy Thirst;
A Hellish Gale, whose captives are accurst.

1. Vide Plin natura. Hist. lib. 28. cap. 8.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

Quid Amor?

Quid sit amor, qualisque, cupis me scire magistro?
Est Veneris proles: coelo metuendus, et Orco;
Et leuior ventis; et fulminis ocyor alis;
Peruigil excubitor; fallax comes; inuidus hospes;
Armatus puer; infanus iuuenis; novitatis
Quesitor, belli fautor; virtuti inimicus;
Splendidus ore, nocens promisso; lege tyrannus;
Dux caecus; gurges viciorum; noctus alumnus;
Fur clandestinus; mors viuida; mortua vita;
Dulcis inexpertis, expertis durus; Eremus
Stultitiae; facula ignescens; vesana libido;
Zelotypum frigus; mala mens; corrupta voluntas;
Pluma leuis; morbus iecoris; dementia prudens;
Infamis leno; Bacchi, Cererisque minister;
Prodiga libertas animae; Pruritus inanis;
Prauorum carcer; Corrupti sanguinis ardor;
Irrationalis motus; sycophanta bilinguis;
Struma pudicitiae; sumi expers flamma; patronus
Periuroe linguae; prostrato foeuus; amicus
Immeritis; animi tempestas; luxuriosus
Praeceptor, fine fine malum; fine pace duellum;
Naufragium humanie vitae; loethale venenum;
Flebile cordolium; grave calcar; acuta fagitta;
Sontica pernicies, nodofoe causa podagrae;
Natus ad infidias vulpes: pontus lachrymarum;
Virgineae Zonae ruptura; dolosa voluptas;
Multicolor serpens; vrens affectus; inermis
Bellator; fenijque caput, feniumque iuuentae?
Ante diem funus; portantis vipera; moestus
Pollinctor; syren fallax; mors proeuia morti;
Infector nemorum; erroris Labyrinthus; amara
Dulcedo; inuentor falsi; via perditionis;
Formarum egregius spectator; poena perennis;
Suspirans ventus; singultu plena querela;
Triste magisterium; multae iactura diei;
Martyrium innocui; temerarius aduena; pondus
Sisyphium; radix curarum; defidis esta;
Febris anhela; fitis moroa; hidropicus ardor;
Vis uno dicam verbo? incarnata Gehenna est.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

This passion is an imitation of the first Sonnet in Seraphine, and grounded upon that which Aristotle writeth of the Eagle, (1) for the proof she maketh of her birds, by setting them to behold the Sun. After whom Pliny hath written, as followeth:
  Aquila implumes etiamnum pullos suos percutiens, Subinde cogit
  adversos intueri Solis radios: et si conniventum humectantemque
  animadvertit, praecipitat e nido,velut adulterinum atque degenerem:
  illum, cuius acies firma contra steterit, educat.

The haughty Eagle Bird, of Birds the best,
Before the feathers of her younglings grow,
She lifts them one by one from out their nest,
To view the Sun, thereby her own to know;
Those that behold it not with open eye,
She lets them fall, not able yet to fly.
Such was my case, when Love possess'd my mind;
Each thought of mine, which could not bide the light
Of her my Sun, whose beams had made me blind,
I made my Will suppress it with Despite:
But such a thought as could abide her best,
I harbor'd still within my careful breast.
But those fond days are past and half forgot;
I practice now the quite clean contrary:
What thoughts can like of her, I like them not,
But choke them straight, for fear of jeopardy;
For thou that Love to some do seem a Toy;
I know by proof that Love is long annoy.

1. Lib. 9 Hist. animal.
2. Nat. Hist. Lib. 10. cap. 1.


M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

The Author feigneth here that Love, essaying with his brand to fire the heart of some such Lady on whom it would not work immediately, to try whether the old virtue of it were extinguished or no, applied it unto his own breast, and thereby foolishly consumed himself. This invention hath some relation unto the Epitaph of Love, written by M. Girolimo Parabosco;
  In cenere giace qui sepolto Amore,
  Colpa di quella, chemorir mi face, etc.

Resolv'd to dust entomb'd here lieth Love,
Through fault of her, who here herself should lie;
He struck her breast, but all in vain did prove
To fire the ice: and doubting by and by
   His brand had lost his force, he gan to try
   Upon himself; which trial made him die.
In sooth no force; let those lament who lust,
I'll find a carol song for obsequy;
For towards me his dealings were unjust,
And cause of all my passed misery:
   The Fates, I think, seeing what I had past,
   In my behalf wrought this revenge at last.
But somewhat more to pacify my mind,
By illing him, through whom I liv'd a slave,
I'll cast his ashes to the open wind,
Or write this Epitaph upon his grave;

   Here lieth Love, of Mars the bastard Son,
   V Vhose foolish fault to death himself hath done.

M Y   L O V E   I S   P A S T.

This is an Epilogue to the whole work, and more like a prayer than a Passion: and is faithfully translated out of Petrarch, Sonnet. 314. 2. part, where he beginneth,
    I vo piangendo i mici passati tempi
    I quai posi in amar cosa mortale,
    Senza leuarmi a volo, lauena iosempi, etc.
    Per dar forse di me non bassi essempi, etc.

Lugeo iam querulus vitae tot lustra peracta,
    Quae male consumpsi, mortalia vana secutur,
    Cum tamen alatus potue volitasse per altum,
    Exemplarque suisse aliis, nec inutile forsan.
Tu mea qui peccata vides, culpasque nefandas,
    Coeli summe parens, magnum, et venerabile numen,
    Collapsae succurre animae; mentisque caducae
    Candida defectum tua gratia suppleat omnem.
Ut, qui sustinui bellum, durasque procellas,
    In pace, et portu moriar: minimeque probanda
    Si mea cita suit, tamen ut claudatur honeste.
Tantillo vitae spacio, quod sort supersit,
    Funeribusque, meis praesentim porrige dextram;
    Ipse vides, in te quam spes mea tota reposta est.

F   I   N   I   S.

The Labor is light, where Love is the Paymistress

Continue to Hekatompathia Glossary and Appendices

Go Back to Hekatompathia Main Page
Go Back to Hekatompathia Dedications
Go Back to Hekatompathia numbers 1- 20
Go Back to Hekatompathia numbers 21- 40
Go Back to Hekatompathia numbers 41- 60
Go Back to Hekatompathia numbers 61- 80

Go Back to Elizabethan Authors HOME PAGE

Site Index

The Elizabethan Authors website is a collaborative effort by Robert Brazil & Barboura Flues
All Rights Reserved. All site contents Copyright © 2002 B. Flues and elizabethanauthors.com
Webmaster contact:    robertbrazil@juno.com