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Mere. nice, thou art right-of anything but a cold
Wind in my stomach.
Johp. And a kind of whimsie
Mere. Here in my head that puts me to the staggers,
What mean the brethren of the Rosy-cross, Whether there be that brotherhood or no. So to desert their votary?
Mere. Have I both in my lodging and my diet,
My clothes, and every other solemn charge, Observed them, made the naked boards my bed,
A faggot for my pillow, hungred sore !
Mere. Who's that? Yes, and outwatched,
Yea, and outwalked any ghost alive
Johp. Ran on the score !
Mere. That have I—who suggests that? -and for more
Than I will speak of to abate this flesh,
Johp. Nay, scarce the sense.
studies (which is seldom my lot), to be the result of laborious and excursive reading. In the Alchemist, for example, the directions given to Abel, for insuring the prosperity of his shop
"On the east side of your shop, aloft, Write Mathlai, Tarmiel, and Baraborat; Upon the north part, Rael, Velel, Thiel." Vol. ii. p. 17 a.
have probably been regarded as a mere play of fancy; but they appear to be derived from the very depths of magical science. "Angeli secundi cœli regnantes die Mercurii, quos advocari oportet a quatuor mundi partibus:
Mathlai, Tarmiel, Baraborat.
Thiel, Rael, Velel, &c
Elem. Magica Petri de Albana.
1 Outis! who is he?] Outis is Greek for nobody; here is an allusion to the trick Ulysses put on Polyphemus when he had shut him in his cave, and asked him what his name was, which Ulysses said was Outis.-WHAL.
Where Julian de Campis
Johp. Believe, frail man, they be, and thou shalt see.
Mere. What shall I see?
Mere. Thee! where?
Johp. [comes forward.] Here, if you
Mere. Sir, our name is Merryfool,
The wight I seek; and, sir, my name is
Intelligence to the sphere of Jupiter,
Mere. Outis ! who is he?1
Johp. Know you not Outis? then you know nobody:
The good old hermit that was said to dwell
Holds out the brandished blade.
knowledge of this person, I am indebted to the kindness and activity of my friend, F. Cohen, [afterwards better known as Sir F. Palgrave,1 who rummaged him out from a world of forgotten lumber in the old German language.
"Send Brieff oder Bericht an alle welche von der Newen Brüderschafft des Ordens vom Rozen Creutz gennant, etwas gesehen oder von andern per modum discursus der sachen beschaffenheit vernommen.
"Es sind viel die im schranken lauffen, etliche aber gewinnen nur das kleinot, darumb ermahne ich,
Julianus de Campis, OGDCRFE,
dass diejenigen welche von einer glücklichen direction und gewünschtes impression guberniret worden, sich nicht durch ihrer selbst eigenen diffidens oder uppigheit unartiges judiciren wendig lassen.
'Milita bonam militiam, servans fidem, et accipies coronam gloriæ.
"Gedruckt im Jahr 1615."
"A Letter Missive, or account addressed to all those who have [as yet] read anything con
Holds out the brandished blade.] For my cerning the New Fraternity, entitled the order
warn all who wish to be guided by a happy di-
To shew your strength? march over heads of armies,
Or points of pikes, to shew your lightness? force
All doors of arts with the petard of your wit?
Read at one view all books? speak all the languages
Of several creatures? master all the learnings
Were, are, or shall be? or, to shew your
Open all treasures hid by nature, from
Sir, you shall do it.
Mere. But how?
Joph. Why, by his skill,
Of which he has left you the inheritance,
Of tincture, high rose tincture. There's
You will have your collar sent you ere't be long.
Mere. I looked, sir, for a halter. I was
Johp. Reach forth your hand.
For that I do commend you; you must be
With all your wealth and learning. When you have made
Your glasses gardens in the depth of winter,
Where you will walk invisible to mankind,
tury. It seems not unreasonable to conjecture that the folly had birth in one of those hot-beds, so prolific of
"All monstrous, all prodigious things Gorgons and hydras, and chimeras dire,
a German lodge of Freemasons: thus much, at least, is certain, that they pretend to the bran dished blade, which is even now one of their hieroglyphics.
A curious disquisition, I will not say a proIt is probable that this Julian de Campis (anfitable one, might be written on this subject, on assumed name) was among the earliest writers which nothing satisfactory has hitherto apon this fantastic subject, and that Jonson de- peared. The Count de Gabalis wisely broke off rived some information from his Letter Missive. just in time to hide his utter ignorance of it; Mr. Cohen, however, assures me that there is indeed he only refines upon the rude visions of nothing in it respecting "the brandished blade." Paracelsus; and Gabriel Naudé, who wrote It is somewhat singular that the origin of the expressly on the Rosicrucians, is loose and deRosicrucians should not have been discovered. clamatory, and has little to the purpose. Neither Paracelsus nor Agrippa (daring dreamers notices, however, a work entitled "Speculum as both were) has any approaches to this singular Sophisticum Rhodostauroticum," which our sect, which, as far as can be discovered, did not poet had perhaps seen. But I forget-satque spring to light till the end of the sixteenth cen- | superque. VOL. III.
Talked with all birds and beasts in their
When you have penetrated hills like air, Dived to the bottom of the sea like lead, And riss' again like cork, walked in the fire,
Or think but any other in mean time,
Mere. Then Hermes Trismegistus.
An 'twere a salamander, passed through all | A fine hard name! Or him, or whom you
In some three minutes with the antipodes, And in five more negotiate the globe over; You must be poor still.
Mere. By my place I know it. Johp. Where would you wish to be now, or what to see,
Without the Fortunate Purse to bear your charges,
Or Wishing Hat? I will but touch your temples,
The corners of your eyes, and tinct the tip, The very tip o' your nose, with this collyrium,
And you shall see in the air all the ideas, Spirits, and atoms, flies that buzz about This way and that way, and are rather admirable
Than any way intelligible.
Mere. O, come, tinct me,
As I said to you afore. Or what do you think
Of Howleglass, instead of him?
I have a mind to.
Johp. O, but Ulen-spiegle Were such a name
but you shall have
What luck is this, he should be busy too! He is weighing water but to fill three hour-glasses,
And mark the day in penn'orths like a cheese,
And he has done. 'Tis strange you should name him
Of all the rest! there being Jamblicus,
Mere. Let me see Pythagoras.
Mere. Or Plato.
Johp. Plato is framing some ideas
Tinct me; I long; save this great belly, I Are now bespoken at a gront a dozen,
But shall I only see?
Johp. See, and command
As they were all your varlets or your footboys:
But first you must declare, (your Greatness must,
For that is now your style,) what you 2 would see,
Mere. Is that my style? my Greatness, then,
Would see King Zoroastres.
Johp. Why, you shall;
Or any one beside. Think whom you please; Your thousand, your ten thousand, to a million:
All's one to me, if you could name a myriad.
Mere. Ay, I have reason;
Three gross at least and for Pythagoras, He has rashly run himself on an employ
Of keeping asses from a field of beans,
Mere. Then Archimedes.
Hold your first man, a good man, Archimedes,
And worthy to be seen; but he is now Inventing a rare mouse-trap with owl's wings
And a cat's-foot, to catch the mice alone :
And ask in season; things asked out of
Because he's said to be the father of con- A man denies himself. At such a time
Methinks you should inquire now after Skelton,
Or Master Skogan.
Mere. Skogan! what was he?
Joph. O, a fine gentleman, and master of arts,
Of Henry the Fourth's time, that made disguises
For the king's sons, and writ in ballad-royal Daintily well.
Mere. But wrote he like a gentleman ? Joph. In rhyme, fine tinkling rhyme, and flowand verse,
With now and then some sense! and he
was paid for't,
Johp. That, Master Skogan, I dare you
Skog. Then, son, our acquaintance is like to endure.
Mere. A pretty game! like Crambo; Master Skogan,
Give me thy hand: thou art very lean, methinks.
Is't living by thy wits?
Skog. If it had been that,
My worshipful son, thou hadst ne'er been so fat.
Johp. He tells you true, sir. Here's a gentleman,
My pair of crafty clerks of that high caract
Regarded and rewarded; which few poets As hardly hath the age produced his like,
Mere. And why?
Joph. 'Cause every dabbler
In rhyme is thought the same :—but you
shall see him.
Hold up your nose.
[Anoints his eyes and temples. Mere. I had rather see a Brachman
Or a Gymnosophist yet.
Johp. You shall see him, sir,
Is worth them both and with him Domine Skelton,
The worshipful poet laureat to King Harry, And Tityre tu of those times. Advance quick Skogan,
And quicker Skelton, shew your crafty heads
Before this heir of arts, this lord of learning, This master of all knowledge in reversion! Enter SKOGAN and SKELTON, in like habits as they lived.1
Skog. Seemeth we are called of a moral intent,
If the words that are spoken as well now
Enter Skogan and Skelton in like habits as they lived.] i.e. in the dress they wore while they were alive. This puts an end to the grave difficulties and graver doubts of M. Mason, Steevens, and Malone, as to the exclamation of Hamlet,
"My father, in like habit as he lived,"
meaning, in the clothes which he usually wore. The idea of Steevens, that a ghost who once puts on armour can never exchange it afterwards for anything more light and comfortable, is very good.
In the lines which follow, Jonson imitates the language of Skogan and Skelton. The former (Henry Skogan) lived in the time of Henry IV., and, as Stow says, sent a ballad to the young
Who not content with the wit of his own
Is curious to know yours, and what hath been.
Mere. Or is, or shall be.
Is, should he ask a sight now, for his life,
Or with an Howleglass?
With feathers upright
To see 'em come skipping in, all at a mess!
To make up the mumming;1
Skog. Or, what do you say to Ruffian
Johp. An excellent sight, if he be not too
But then we can mix him with modern
The child of tobacco, his pipes, and his
Mere. You talked of Elinor Rumming, I had rather
See Ellen of Troy. Johp. Her you shall see :
But credit me,
1 With Elinor Rumming,
To make up the mumming, &c.] These are Skelton's own verses in his ballad on Eleanor Rumming, the old ale-wife.-WHAL.
That Mary Ambree
The ANTIMASQUE follows,
They DANCE, and withdraw. Mere. What, are they vanished! where is skipping Skelton ?
Yet what greater sense or better matter can be, than is in this ragged rhyme contayned? Or who would have hearde his fault so playnely told him, if not in such gibyng sorte ?"-The Golden Aphroditis.
2 [When Jonson makes Merefool ask to see "Ellen of Troy," he was doubtless thinking of the exquisite lines of Marlowe in The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus.-F. C.]
As the ballad doth vaunt.] The ballad, of which the first stanza follows, is republished in Percy's Reliques, vol. ii. p. 218.
"When captains courageous, whom death colde not daunte,
Jonson was evidently fond of Skelton, and frequently imitates his short titupping style, which is not his best. I know Skelton only by the modern edition of his works, dated 1736. But from this stupid publication I can easily discover that he was no ordinary man. Why Warton and the writers of his school rail at him so vehemently, I know not; he was perhaps the best scholar of his day, and displays on many occasions strong powers of description, and a vein of poetry that shines through all the rubbish which ignorance has spread over it. He flew at high game, and therefore occasionally called in the aid of vulgar ribaldry to mask the direct attack of his satire. This was seen centuries ago, and yet we are now instituting a process against him for rudeness and indelicacy! "By what means," says Grange (who wrote about the beginning of Elizabeth's reign), "could Skelton, that laureat poet, have uttered his mind so well at large as thorowe his cloke of mery conceytes, as in his Speake Parrot, Ware the Hawke, The Tunning of Elinor Rumming, Why come ye not to the Court, &c. | her gravestone.
Did march to the siege of the cittye of Gaunte, They mustred their souldiers by two and by three,
And foremost in battle was Mary Ambree.”
Or Westminster Meg. There is a penny story-book of this tremendous virago, who performed many wonderful exploits about the time that Jack the Giant-killer flourished. She was buried, as all the world knows, in the cloisters of Westminster Abbey, where a huge stone is still pointed out to the Whitsuntide visitors as