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Where with her best nurse Contemplation
She plumes her feathers, and lets grow her wings,
That in the various bustle of resort
Were all to ruffled, and sometimes impair’d.


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Examynacyon of A. Askew, p. 24. “ there plant." And in other “ Hath not he moche nede of places. Pope says, helpe who seketh to soche a

Contemplation prunes her rufflid surgeon ?" So also in Isaiah,

wings. ii. 10. • To it shall the Gentiles

See On the Marks of Poetical Imi. seek.T. Warton. 377. She plumes her feathers,] however, in Hughes's Thought

tation, 12mo. 1757. p. 43. I find, I believe the true reading to be prunes, which Lawes ignorantly edit. 1735. vol. i. 12mo. p. 171.

in a Garden, written 1704; Poems,

p altered to plumes, afterwards imperceptibly continued in the Here Contemplation prunes her wings. poet's own edition. To prune

T. Warton. wings, is to smooth, or set them 380. Were all to ruffled,] So in order, when ruffled. For this read as in editions 1637, 1645, is the leading idea. Spenser, and 1673. Not too, nimis. All

, F. Q. ii. iii. 36.

to, or al-to, is, intirely. See She gins her feathers foule disfigured Tyrwhitt's Gl. Chaucer, v. Too. Proudly to prune.

Various instances occur in ChauAnd in the M. M. of Thestylis,

cer and Spenser, and in later

writers. "O how the coate of At their brightest beams “ Christ that was withoui seam Him proynd in lovley wise.

" is all to rent and torn.” HomiThat is, he pruned his wetted lies, b. i. i. See Hearne's Gl. “ and disordered wings.” Water

Langtoft, p. 663. Observat. on fowl, at this day, are said to Spenser's F. Q. ii. 225. and Uppreene, when they sleek or re- ton's Spenser, Notes, p. 391. 594. place their wet feathers in the 625. And the fifteenth general sun. See commentators on Shake- rule for understanding G. Douspeare, P. I. Henry IV. act i. glass's Virgil, prefixed to Ruddi

man's Glossary in the capital

edition of that translation. And Which makes him prune himself, &c.

Upton's Gloss. v. All. The corWhere Dr. Warburton and Han- ruption, supposed to mer substituted plume. Upton emendation, "all too ruffled," derives the word from the French began with Tickell, who had no brunir, to polish. Nolęs on Spen- knowledge of our old language, ser, p. 446. col. 2. Prune her and has been continued by Fentender wing is in Pope. Prune, ton, and Dr. Newton. Tonson amputo, is sometimes written has the true reading, in 1695, proine, as in Drayton, Polyolb. and 1705. T. Warton. vol. ii. s. iii. p.714. (But see fol. I have restored the old readedit. 1613.) “Here proine, and ing. E.


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He that has light within his own clear breast
May sit i' th centre, and enjoy bright day:
But he that hides a dark soul and foul thoughts,
Benighted walks under the mid-day sun;
Himself is his own dungeon.


'Tis most true,
That musing meditation most affects
The pensive secrecy of desert cell,
Far from the cheerful haunt of men and herds,
And sits as safe as in a senate-house;
For who would rob a hermit of his weeds,
His few books, or his beads, or maple dish,
Or do his


violence ? But beauty, like the fair Hesperian tree



gray hairs

381. He that has light &c.] This 388. of men and herds,] It whole speech is a remarkably fine was at first, men or herds. encomium on the force of virtue: 389. And sits as safe as in a but there is something so vastly senate house ;] Not many years afstriking and astonishing in these ter this was written, Milton's last five lines, that it is impossible friends shewed that the safety of to pass them over without stop- a senate-house was not invioping to admire and enjoy them. lable. But, when the people turn I do not know any place in the legislators, what place is safe whole circle of his poetical per- from the tumults of innovation, formances, where dignity of and the insults of disobedience? sentiment and sublimity of ex- T. Warton. pression are so happily united. 390. For who would rob &c.] Thyer.

These two lines at first stood 384. Benighted walks &c.) In- thus in the Manuscript. stead of these two lines the poet

For who would rob a hermit of his had written at first,

beads, Walks in black vapours, though the

His books, his hairy gown, or maple

dish, noontide brand Blaze in the summer solstice.

393. But beauty, &c.] These Afterwards he blotted them out, sentiments are heightened from and made this alteration much the Faithful Shepherdess, act i. for the better.

$. 1.


Laden with blooming gold, had need the guard
Of dragon-watch with uninchanted eye,
To save her blossoms, and defend her fruit
From the rash hand of bold incontinence.
You may as well spread out the unsunn'd heaps
Of miser's treasure by an out-law's den,
And tell me it is safe, as bid me hope
Danger will wink on opportunity,
And let a single helpless maiden pass
Uninjur'd in this wild surrounding waste.
Of night, or loneliness it recks me not;
I fear the dread events that dog them both,



the eye

gaze, &c.

-can such beauty be

Uninjur'd in this wide surrounding Safe in its own guard, and not drawe

waste : Of him that passeth on, to greedy and I know not whether wide is

not better than wild, which seems Compare also Shakespeare, As to be sufficiently implied in

waste. you like it, act i. s. 3. And see

404. it recks] I care not for, below, the note v. 982.

T. Warton.

&c. So “ what recks it them?"

Lycid. v. 122. and Par. L. ix. 395. Of dragon-watch with un

173.“ Let it, I reck not." And inchanted eye,] That is, which

ii. 50.“ Of god, or hell, or worse, cannot be inchanted. Here is

« he recked not." See Note on v. more flattery; but certainly such 836. infr. From reck comes retchas no poet in similar circumstances could resist the oppor- Thirty-nine Articles, where the

lessness, or recklessness, in the tunity of paying. T. Warto 400. -as bid me hope] The

common reading is, “ into wretchfirst reading was,

« lessness of most unclean living."

Artic. xvii. As if, yet with a -as bid me think.

manifest perversion of terms, a 403. Uninjur'd in this wild wretched profligacy was intended. surrounding waste.] The verse was

The precise meaning is, a careat first,

lessness, a confident negligence,

consisting “ of the most abanUninjur'd in this vast and hideous

“ doned course of life.” Reck, wild :

with its derivatives, is the lanand at present it stands in the guage of Chaucer and Spenser. Manuscript,

T. Wurton.


Lest some ill-greeting touch attempt the person
Of our unowned Sister.


I do not, Brother,
Infer, as if I thought my Sister's state

Secure without all doubt, or controversy :
Yet where an equal poise of hope and fear
Does arbitrate th' event, my nature is
That I incline to hope, rather than fear,
And gladly banish squint suspicion.
My Sister is not so defenceless left
As you imagine; she' has a hidden strength

remember not.

What hidden strength,
Unless the strength of heav'n, if you mean that?

I mean that too, but yet a hidden strength,
Which if heav'n gave it, may be term’d her own :

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409. Secure without all doubt, first passado, and for hope and or controversy :

fear, hopes and fears. Yet where an equal poise &c.] 413. ---squint suspicion.] AlInstead of these lines are the fol- luding probably in this epithet lowing in the Manuscript. to Spenser's description of SusSecure without all doubt or question; picion in his Mask of Cupid,

Faery Queen, b. iii. cant. 12. st. I could be willing though now i th' 15.

dark to try A tough encounter with the shaggicst

For he was foul, ill-favoured, and ruffian,

grim, That lurks by hedge or lane of this

Under his eye-brows looking still rdead circuit,

scaunce &c. To have her by my side, though I were


415. As you imagine ; &c.] This She might be free from peril, where she is.

verse is redundant in the ManuBut where an equal poise of hope script, and fear &c.

As you imagine, Brother; she has a For encounter he had written at hidden strength.



'Tis chastity, my Brother, chastity:
She that has that, is clad in complete steel,
And like a quiver'd nymph with arrows keen

Hamlet ap

420. 'Tis chastity, my Brother, Where through the sacred awe of chastity;

chastity, She that has that, is clad in

No savage fierce, bandite, or moun.

taineer complete steel,

Shall dare to soil her virgin purity. And like a quiver'd nymph with arrows keen, &c.]

421. The phrase " complete

“ steel” was, I rather think, a Perhaps Milton remembered a stanza in Fletcher's Purple Is

common expression for “ armed

« from head to foot.” It occurs land, published but the pre- in Dekker's Untrussing of the ceding year, b. x. st. 27. It is in a personification of Virgin- Humorous Poet, which was acted chastitie.

by the Lord Chamberlain's ser

vants, and the choir-boys of St. With her, her sister went, a warlike maid,

Paul's, in 1602. Parthènia, all in steele and gilded peared at least before 1598. arms,

Again, in The weakest goeth to In needle's stead, a mighty spear she the wall, of which the first edisway'd, &c.

tion was in 1600. Hence an exSee El. iv. 109. T. Warton. pression in our author's Apology,

421. She that has that, is clad which also confirms what is here in complete steel, &c.] He has said, s. 1. “ Zeal, whose subfinely improved here upon Ho- “ stance is ethereal, arming in race, Od. i. xxii. 1.

complete diamond, ascends his

“ fiery chariot, &c." Pr. W. i. Integer vitæ, scelerisque purus &c.

114. T. Warton. and the phrase of complete steel 422. And like a quiver'd nymph is borrowed from Shakespeare. with arrows keen] I make no Hamlet speaking to the Ghost, doubt but Milton in this passage act i, sc. 7.

had his eye upon Spenser's Bel-What may this mean,

phæbe, whose character, arms, That thou, dead corse, again in com. and manner of life perfectly cor

plete steel Revisitst thus the glimpses of the respond with this description.

it moon ?

is, that Spenser intended under And the lines following, before that personage to represent the they were corrected, were thus virtue of chastity. Thus in the in the Manuscript,

introduction to the third book of She that has that; is clad in complete his Faery Queen, complimentsteel,

ing his virgin sovereign Queen And may on every needful accident,

Elizabeth, he says, Be it not done in pride or wilful tempting,

But either Gloriana let her choose, Walk through huge forests, and un- Or in Belphæbe fashioned to be: harbour'd heaths,

In th' one her rule, in th other her Infamous hills, and sandy perilous

rare chastity. wilds,

Thyer. VOL. IV.


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