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- The Poetaster - 30/49 -


Pol. That all your writing is mere railing.

Aut. Ha? If all the salt in the old comedy Should be so censured, or the sharper wit Of the bold satire termed scolding rage, What age could then compare with those for buffoons? What should be said of Aristophanes, Persius, or Juvenal, whose names we now So glorify in schools, at least pretend it?--- Have they no other?

Pol. Yes; they say you are slow, And scarce bring forth a play a year.

Aut. 'Tis true. I would they could not say that I did that ! There' s all the joy that I take in their trade, Unless such scribes as these might be proscribed Th' abused theatres. They would think it strange, now, A man should take but colts-foot for one day, And, between whiles, spit out a better poem Than e'er the master of art, or giver of wit, Their belly, made. Yet, this is possible, If a free mind had but the patience, To think so much together and so vile. But that these base and beggarly conceits Should carry it, by the multitude of voices, Against the most abstracted work, opposed To the stuff'd nostrils of the drunken rout! O, this would make a learn'd and liberal soul To rive his stained quill up to the back, And damn his long-watch'd labours to the fire, Things that were born when none but the still night And his dumb candle, saw his pinching throes, Were not his own free merit a more crown Unto his travails than their reeling claps. This 'tis that strikes me silent, seals my lips, And apts me rather to sleep out my time, Than I would waste it in contemned strifes With these vile Ibides, these unclean birds, That make their mouths their clysters, and still purge From their hot entrails. But I leave the monsters To their own fate. And, since the Comic Muse Hath proved so ominous to me, I will try If TRAGEDY have a more kind aspect; Her favours in my next I will pursue, Where, if I prove the pleasure but of one, So he judicious be, he shall be alone A theatre unto me; Once I'll say To strike the ear of time in those fresh strains, As shall, beside the cunning of their ground, Give cause to some of wonder, some despite, And more despair, to imitate their sound. I, that spend half my nights, and all my days, Here in a cell, to get a dark paleface, To come forth worth the ivy or the bays, And in this age can hope no other grace--- Leave me! There's something come into my thought, That must and shall be sung high and aloof, Safe from the wolfs black jaw, and the dun ass's hoof

Nas. I reverence these raptures, and obey them. [The scene closes---

------------------------------------------------

GLOSSARY

ABATE, cast down, subdue.

ABHORRING, repugnant (to), at variance.

ABJECT, base, degraded thing, outcast.

ABRASE, smooth, blank.

ABSOLUTE(LY), faultless(ly).

ABSTRACTED, abstract, abstruse.

ABUSE, deceive, insult, dishonour, make ill use of.

ACATER, caterer.

ACATES, cates.

ACCEPTIVE, willing, ready to accept, receive.

ACCOMMODATE, fit, befitting. (The word was a fashionable one and used on all occasions. See "Henry IV.," pt. 2, iii. 4).

ACCOST, draw near, approach.

ACKNOWN, confessedly acquainted with.

ACME, full maturity.

ADALANTADO, lord deputy or governor of a Spanish province.

ADJECTION, addition.

ADMIRATION, astonishment.

ADMIRE, wonder, wonder at.

ADROP, philosopher's stone, or substance from which obtained.

ADSCRIVE, subscribe.

ADULTERATE, spurious, counterfeit.

ADVANCE, lift.

ADVERTISE, inform, give intelligence.

ADVERTISED, "be--," be it known to you.

ADVERTISEMENT, intelligence.

ADVISE, consider, bethink oneself, deliberate.

ADVISED, informed, aware; "are you--?" have you found that out?

AFFECT, love, like; aim at; move.

AFFECTED, disposed; beloved.

AFFECTIONATE, obstinate; prejudiced.

AFFECTS, affections.

AFFRONT, "give the--," face.

AFFY, have confidence in; betroth.

AFTER, after the manner of.

AGAIN, AGAINST, in anticipation of.

AGGRAVATE, increase, magnify, enlarge upon.

AGNOMINATION. See Paranomasie.

AIERY, nest, brood.

AIM, guess.

ALL HID, children's cry at hide-and-seek.

ALL-TO, completely, entirely ("all-to-be-laden").

ALLOWANCE, approbation, recognition.

ALMA-CANTARAS (astronomy), parallels of altitude.

ALMAIN, name of a dance.

ALMUTEN, planet of chief influence in the horoscope.

ALONE, unequalled, without peer.

ALUDELS, subliming pots.

AMAZED, confused, perplexed.

AMBER, AMBRE, ambergris.

AMBREE, MARY, a woman noted for her valour at the siege of Ghent, 1458.

AMES-ACE, lowest throw at dice.

AMPHIBOLIES, ambiguities.

AMUSED, bewildered, amazed.

AN, if.

ANATOMY, skeleton, or dissected body.

ANDIRONS, fire-dogs.

ANGEL, gold coin worth 10 shillings, stamped with the figure of the archangel Michael.

ANNESH CLEARE, spring known as Agnes le Clare.

ANSWER, return hit in fencing.

ANTIC, ANTIQUE, clown, buffoon.

ANTIC, like a buffoon.

ANTIPERISTASIS, an opposition which enhances the quality


The Poetaster - 30/49

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