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more truth. And the first writers of the mirror of magistrates, who imagine a talk for some one to speak, and according to his person frame the oration,' appear to have availed themselves of these directions, if not to have catched the notion of their whole plan from this remarkable passage.'

"He next shews the advantages of personification in enlivening a composition."

Sometimes it is good to make God, the country, or some one town, to speak; and look what we would say in our own person, to frame the whole tale to them. Such variety doeth much good to avoid tediousness. For he that speaketh all in one sort, though he speak things never so wittily, shall soon weary his hearers. Figures thereforé were invented to avoid satiety, and cause delight: to refresh with pleasure and quicken with grace the dulness of man's brain. Who will look on a white wall an hour together where no workmanship is at all? Or who will eat still one kind of meat and never desire change?

"Prolix narratives, whether jocose or seri ous, had not yet ceased to be the entertainment of polite companies: and rules for telling a tale with grace now found a place in a book

of general rhetoric. In treating of pleasant sport made by rehearsing of a whole matter,

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They that can lively tell pleasant tales and merry deeds doen, and set them out as well with gesture as with voice, leaving nothing behind that may serve for beautifying of their matter, are most meet for this purpose, whereof assuredly there are but few. And whatsoever he is, that can aptly tell his tale, and with countenance, voice, and gesture, so temper his report that the hearers may still take delight, him count a man worthy to be highly esteemed. For undoubtedly no man can do any such thing unless except that they have a great mother wit, and by experience confirmed such their comeliness whereunto by nature they were most apt. Many a man readeth histories, heareth fables, seeth worthy acts doen, even in this our age; but few can set them out accordingly, and tell them lively, as the matter self requireth to be told. The kinds of delighting in this sort are divers: whereof I will set forth many-Sport moved by telling of old tales.If there be any old tale or strange history well and wittily applied to some man living, all men love to hear it of life. As if one were called Arthur, some good fellow that were well acquainted with king Arthur's book and the knights of his round table, would

want no matter to make good sport, and for a need would dub him knight of the round table, or else prove him to be one of his kin, or else (which were much) prove him to be Arthur himself. And so likewise of other names merry panions' would make mad pastime. Oftentimes the deformity of a man's body giveth matter enough to be right merry, or else a picture in shape like another man will make some to laugh right heartily, &c.

"This is no unpleasing image of the arts and accomplishments, which seasoned the mirth and enlivened the conversations of our forefathers. Their wit seems to have chiefly consisted in mimicry."

"He thus describes the literary and ornamental qualifications of a young nobleman, which were then in fashion, and which he exemplifies in the characters of his lamented pupils, Henry duke of Suffolk, and lord Charles Brandon, his brother."

I may commend him for his learning, for his skill in the French or in the Italian, for his knowledge in cosmography, for his skill in the laws, in

1 1 companions.

the histories of all countries, and for his gift of enditing. Again, I may commend him for playing at weapons, for running upon a great horse, for charging his staff at the tilt, for vauting, for playing upon instruments, yea, and for painting, or drawing of a plat, as in old time noble princes much delighted therein. And again, such a man is an excellent fellow, saith one, he can speak the tongues well, he plays of instruments few men better, he feigneth to the lute marvellous sweetly, he endites excellently: but for all this, the more is the pity, he hath his faults, he will be drunk once a day, he loves women well, &c.


"The following passage acquaints us, among other things, that many now studied, and with the highest applause, to write elegantly in English as well as in Latin.”

When we have learned usual and accustomable words to set forth our meaning, we ought to join them together in apt order, that the ear may delight in hearing the harmony. I know some Englishmen, that in this point have such a gift in the English as few in Latin have the like; and therefore delight the wise and learned so much with their pleasant composition, that many rejoice, when they may

hear such, and think much learning is got when they may talk with them.

"But he adds the faults which were sometimes now to be found in English composition, among which he censures the excess of alliteration."

Some will be so short, and in such wise curtail their sentences, that they had need to make a commentary immediately of their meaning, or else the most that hear them shall be forced to keep counsel. Some will speak oracles, that a man cannot tell

Some will be so fine and

which way to take them. so poetical withal, that to their seeming there shall not stand one heare' amiss, and yet every body else shall think them meeter for a lady's chamber, than for an earnest matter in any open assembly-Some use over much repetition of one letter, as pitiful poverty prayeth for a penny, but puffed presumption passeth not a point, pampering his paunch with pestilent pleasure, procuring his passport to post it to hell pity there to be punished with pains perpetual

"Others, he blames for the affectation of ending a word with a vowel and beginning the next with another. Some, he says, end

' hair.

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