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TO THE SACRED
MAJESTIE OF MY
LORD THE KING
These Verses present in your Royall view,
Presumed not to presse into this roome:
But brought as prisoners to receive from you,
Of Death, or Life, as likes you best, the doome.
Thus th’Author and his rimes both prostrate lie,
And as your Highnesse saies, say they, and I.
Your Majesties most humble
and faithfull Subject and Servant:
The Song of Peace it is a copious theame, (Peace, a copious Theame.
Whereon a Poet learned, and at leisure,
Of royall paper well might fill a reame,
And do it without labour at his pleasure.
I have nor learning, neither Poets skill,
Yet out of zeale will utter my good will.
The God of peace (There to begin it’s best)
So guide aright my slender oaten quill;
That what I write, the greatest and the least,
May take it well, as I intend none ill.
My theame is Peace, and Peace is my desire,
Else would my rimes were flaming in the fire.
Peace may be understood more waies then one, (Peace, a word.
The word is full of ambiguitie:Ambiguous
And yet in each sence good: ere I have done,
That shall appeare to every pearcing eye.
Marke all the branches springing from this root,
You’l grant my words, and somwhat more to boot.
At Christ the Sonne of God his happy birth,
It is recorded in the sacred story: Luke 2. 13.
A Quire of Angels sang with heavenly mirth,
Peace be on earth, and unto God be glory.
If peace of blessed Angels be the song, ( Peace, the Song of Angels.
The note of discord doth to divels belong.
So sweet a Song was never heard before,
No Chanters such in no Cathedral Quire:
Some thousands were of Quiristers and more,
Their theame was Peace, there could not be a higher.
If ye aske, Where was pen’d this blessed Dittie?
In new Jerusalem that holy Cittie.
Three parts were of that Song, Gods glory first:
Next, Peace on earth: Then, Unto men good will:
I hold them of all other people worst,
That sever these through hate, or lacke of skill.
Peace and good will among the folke of Christ,
Redoundeth to the glory of the High’st.
In elder Writ, though God be named oft
The Lord of Hosts, none can be so but he,
For cause he brings the greatest Kings to nought,
And where he pleaseth doth give victorie:
Yet in the new (as I can call to minde)
That title seild, or never doe I finde.
His pow’r and might is as it was before,
All Lords on earth to him are but as Flies:
And yet it seemes it was his pleasure more,
Since Christ came downe, to set before our eyes
His mercy shadow’d from his Majestie,
So yeelding comfort t’our mortalitie.
The God of Peace, by this name is he knowne, (1. Thes. 5. 23. Phil. 4. 7.
His Peace all understanding doth surmount:
Then those whom he vouchsafeth for his owne,
If they to dwell with him doe make account,
Must live in Peace, and perfect Unity:
Else if they say th’are his, I'le sweare, they lye. 1. John 4. 20.
Peace, Love and Concord, Christian badges be, (Peace the badge of
By them are Christs disciples knowne from others: Christians.
But such as live voyd of all charitie, 1. John 2. and 3.10
Are not his servants, much lesse then his brothers:
They to another master doe retaine,
And he must pay them wages for their paine.
Sweet is the name of Peace, but sweeter farre
The thing it selfe, experience prooves it true:
An Adage old doth tell me, Sweet is Warre. (Dulce bellum inexperte.
To whom? To him that Warre yet never knew.
If any list to try before he trust,
Such will approove my saying true and just.
If men did understand what joy of heart,
What inward comfort to a soule distrest,
What ease of griefe, and what release from smart
Gods peace doth bring, and how it makes men blest;
They would sell all they have to get that treasure,
Placing therein their only joy and pleasure.
Of Peace God is the Author and the giver, (1. Thes. 5.
A King so great and bountifull, as he
Bestowes not trifles on his true beleever:
Then Peace, Gods gift, must needs a good one be. (Peace is Gods gift.
All Monarchs upon earth, though joyn’d in one,
May not compare their gifts with his alone.
Christ when he came brought peace, & when he parted, (Joh. 6. 33.
Left that behind to his Disciples deere: (Joh. 14. 27.
Their doctrine, unto those whom they converted,
Was full of peace: And whil’st they lived heere, (Christ left Peace.
They taught us still to pray, Da pacem nobis, His Disciples taught Peace.
As Christ at parting sayd to them, Pax vobis.
Christ is our Peace, what can be spoke more full, ( Ephes. 2. 14.
In praise of that which needs none other glosing? (Christ is our peace.
Yet are our wits, in things divine, so dull,
As rather leane on humane sense reposing,
Then on the truth: whereon he that doth rest,
(Say worldlings what they list) is surely blest.
Well spake the Hebrewes, when they wished good (Peace, all blessings.
Unto their neighbour whom they passed by:
Peace be to thee, which rightly understood, (Gen. 43. 23.
Implies all blisse, and all felicity. (1. Sam. 25. 6.
That Sacred tongue in briefe expresseth to us,
What good Peace (if we it imbrace) will doe us.
Men of meeke spirit shall the Land possesse, (Psal. 37. 11. and 37.
Peace in abundance shall refresh their hearts:
Of innocence and perfect uprightnesse,
Peace is the end: (good pay for high deserts.)
The hauty-hearted, wicked, and unjust,
Some other thing for hire, expect they must.
Tell, Who began to breake the sacred band
Of blessed Peace, wherein man liv’d at first?
Was’t not that Cain who lifted up his hand, (Gen. 4.
And with a murthrous mind (O wretch accurst)
Brake peace, and foully slue his onely brother,
Though they had both one father, & one mother?
This was the first of men that so transgressed, (Cain the first Peace
Yet long before the divell led the dance: breaker.
When Adam and his wife stood in state blessed
In Paradise: it fell not out by chance,
But by suggestion of the wicked fiend,
That man made God his foe, which was his friend.
The divell was a make-bate, and man-slayer (John 8. 44.
From the beginning, so continues still:
All that be such, must unto him repaire,
Where they shall finde of brawles and stirs their fill.
Let them not looke for Peace, ther’s none in hell,
“Nay hel’s on earth, wheras Peace doth not dwell.
“In heaven is Peace, earth’s heaven where peace dwelleth,
A man within himselfe may be at bate:
The Peace of Conscience all peace else excelleth, (Peace of.
What so disquiets that, well maist thou hate. (Rom. 5. 1.
This, both with God, and with our selves doth set us
At perfect rest, and then can nothing fret us.
O what a hell is’t in a countrey Cot, (Peace in a House.
Where dwels not Peace, but harsh debate and strife?
All plenties there, they are not worth a groat,
Jarres being only ’twixt the man and wife:
If they alone doe love, and live as friends,
For all defects besides, that makes amends.
Children th’example of their parents follow,
Good servants doe their masters imitate:
Ther’s none (but if he have his heart all hollow)
That joyes not in beholding such a state.
Such is the power of gracious unity,
Makes earthly men, as heavenly Angels be.
Proceed yet further to a stately towne, (Peace in a Towne.
Where Peace & concord swayes ’mongst all degrees,
Riches and plenty doe their labours crowne,
They live together like a swarme of Bees.
Both great and small bring honey to the hive,
A drone is he that knowes not there to thrive.
Of Kingdomes and of Empires large and great, (Peace in a Kingdome.
Like may be said and more, if it were need:
“’Tis Peace that doth adorne a Princes seat,
“Making it glorious like Gods throne in deed.
“As Kings are Gods Lieutenants, so should shine
“Their thrones, in sort resembling the divine.
In heavens kingdome there is no contending, (No Peace breach in Heaven.
Those subjects know, and doe their duties right:
All is so well, that there needs no amending,
There God and King is ever in their sight.
That’s not for terror, but t’increase their blisse,
For in his presence all contentment is. (Psalm. 16.
Once yet, above there was a foule rebelling, (Since the fall of Lucifer.
When factious troupes of Angell-mutiners, Revel. 7.
Joyn’d with great Lucifer in damn’d pride swelling,
Were tumbled downe as vilde conspiraters,
From highest Heaven, into that burning lake,
Which once to thinke on, any heart would quake.
But since that time, there never chanced more
The least disorder: never will againe:
Those Angels that were true to God before,
Had this free charter, That whil’st he did raigne,
(Which is for aye) they never should decline,
Not the least jot from his good will divine.
And so they live in Peace, (there needs be spoken
No more) that is, in a most blessed state:
Such peace as henceforth never can be broken,
Such love, as never can give way to hate.
With Psalms, and hymnes, and heavenly melodie,
Yeelding laud to the glorious Trinitie.
Suppose there might be found but one great towne,
Or one small kingdome in this Universe;
Where some resemblance of the state laid downe,
Were well observ’d: who would not there converse,
Wishing himselfe a member to that head,
Which with such peace the body governed?
Blest were that people, blessed were that King,
As blest as on this center men may be:
All freely thither would their tributes bring,
And count that service greatest Libertie,
To live in Peace, life, lands and goods secure:
What man but such a service would endure?
Such kingdomes hardly can be found on earth,
Ambition swaies too much mongst men of State:
Of Peacefull Princes, there is so great dearth,
For One I know, I cannot finde a mate:
That One must be the Phœnix of this age;
To him the Muses flie for Patronage.
Or nothing or enough before is writ,
To give content unto each man of reason:
Yet some there be, to shew their straine of wit,
Will have their spoke, be’t ne’re so out of season.
I partly guesse what they meane to object,
Their shafts once shot, shall on themselves reflect.
They’le say, What tell you us a tale of Peace? (Objection.
You are a Clerke (it seemes) bound to your booke:
Goe sit you downe, command your Muse to cease,
And now a while upon those triumphes looke,
Of Kings and Keisars, which doe eternize
Their names, and raise them up above the skies.
Th’Assyrian Monarch hight Nebuchadnezzar, (The fame of great
That famous Greekish King, surnamed Great: warriours.
Romes worthy warriour, stout Julius Cæsar,
And he that made proud Bajazet to eate
Crums at his feet: Never were men so high
Plac’t in Fames chaire, crown’d with eternity.
That Carthaginean Chiefetaine, Hannibal,
(A better souldier never liv’d before him)
Which wel-neere brought great Rome unto her fall:
And famous Scipio that over-bore him.
What say you of these Nobles, and their deeds?
It joyes his heart that onely of them reeds.
A thousand Worthies else, as well as these,
Recorded are in Writers old and new:
Who following warres, regarded not their ease,
But over Hils, through Woods, and Rivers drew
Millions of men, to seeke out unknowne Lands,
And reare them Trophies with victorious hands.
All these by warres great victories obtained,
Slue mighty Kings, and took their Crownes of gold:
O’re-ran whole Countries where they after raigned,
And waxing powerfull, did even what they would.
Both life and death lay in their conquering hands,
The world was all subject to their commands.
These honours got they, not by sitting still,
And hearing Schoole-men prate of Sophistry:
They scorn’d to scribble paper with a quill,
Or beat their braines about Philosophy.
Their joy was in their Armour and their Swords,
Their exercise was sturdy blowes, not words.
Who ever liv’d on earth with such delight,
As did those Worthies, and their valiant bands?
They got them glorious names with honours bright,
Riches and pleasures, houses, wives, and lands.
They could not lacke: for all the world was theirs,
And when they dyed, left it to their heires.
Well spoke, and like a man at Armes indeed, (The Objection answered.
You can (it seemes) get Kingdomes in a trice:
He wins that hath so sure a card at need,
Yet hazzards all, that trusts to cards or dice:
“Sure play is best, so say old gamsters oft:
“The Mault is sweetest when the fire burnes soft.
Strange is it to behold the vulgar sort,
And some of better ranke, borne with the tide
Into this gaping gulfe: Nay, it’s a sport,
To see them tickled with a foolish pride
Of others Acts: They, only full of words,
When most of them scarce ever drew their swords.
What got those great ones by their feats of warre? ( The miserable
How long injoy’d they their felicity? ends of great warriours.
Did not swift downe-falles all their triumphs marre?
And leave just nought to their Posterity?
Some liv’d and dy’d exil’d; Some had their ends
By violence, as they had us’d their friends.
He that upon a Stage should once behold (A comparison, expressing
Those gallant fellowes in their jollity, the instability of mans estate.
Seeing them looke up big, all clad in gold,
Attended on with brave Nobility,
Would thinke no men on earth so blest as they,
Nor that their limbs (like ours) were made of clay.
But shortly after in another Scene,
At the Catastroph’ of the Tragedie,
Bereft of state, and rich attendance cleane,
Led to the whip, or else to Butcherie,
Or drinking poyson, stab’d with knife, or sword,
Might (envylesse) their late joyes them affoord.
“Ther’s no assurance got by shedding bloud,
“No honour wonne by spoyle and robberie:
“Those be the fruits of Warre, which like a floud
“Sweepes all away, and leaves but miserie.
“One of Gods rods it is to chastise sinners; (1. Sam. 24.
“Strike where it will, shall neither side be winners.
Here am I ledde into a long digression,
To free my Muse from idle opposition:
Such Phantasies have left so deepe impression
In some mens braines, as scant the best Physicion
Can purge the humor, or the men restore,
Submitting their conceits to reasons lore.
Mistake me not: I am no man of State, (A Caveat of the Author.
Nor dive I into hidden Mysteries
Of Kings, or Common-weales: My country pate
Had never practice in such secresies.
Nor am I so ill bred, but that I know,
To beare me to the high, as to the low.
To Kings and Princes sure it doth belong, (Kings have Power to war.
By lawes of God, and man, and natures guiding,
To keepe their Persons, Subjects, States from wrong,
The care hereof is left to their providing.
“Faire meanes are best, try all such: if they misse,
“Then make no doubt, the sword as lawfull is.
“Gods Vice-royes (holy Writ hath made it known) (Rom. 13.
“Beare not the sword in vaine; nor dull, as treene:
“Sometimes of force it must be naked showne,
“And us’d to proove how that the edge is keene.
“The tree that wil not bow, must needs be broke,
“Be it an Hazell, Shrub, or sturdy Oke.
A Poet speaking like a man of State,
And in the greatest State that ever sway’d, (A meane in peace.
When Rome no equall had with it to mate,
Yet fearing grosse security, thus said:
“Roman, rule thou thy Realmes with Empire just, (Virgil.
“Be wise, too much on peace set not thy lust.
“Spare subjects, Rebels proud lay in the dust:
A golden rule the greatest Kings to guide: (Basilicon Doron. lib. 3.
Though loth they are, yet somtimes strike they must,
To curbe injustice, or to master pride.
“Wrongs to repell, but none to doe, is Princelike;
“A man may too long beare, as too soone strike.
It is their charge, and they are tyed to it
By God, who sent them in his roome to sit:
He bids them strike sometimes, and they must doe it; (Rom. 13.
They have their warrant in the holy Writ.
“He doth the wrong (I heard mine elders say)
“Who hinders not wrong-doing when he may.
A holy King complain’d of his abode
’Mong men that loathed Peace even in their hearts: (Dissembling
He spake to them of peace, like mind they show'd, (Psal. 120.
Yet meant not plainly, but us’d cunning arts.
For when of peace they openly did prattle,
Then under-hand prepared they for battle.
A man of warre, of Peace may be the child, (A warriour may be
If so he seeke and wish it from his heart; child of Peace.
He may be stout, and yet he may be mild,
On either Scene fitted to act his part.
“War being just, and waged by constraint,
“May well agree with any earthly Saint.
Old Abraham the friend of God: Though he (Jam. 2.
Most faithfull were, and full of honesty: (Abraham.
(That’s no disparagement to his dignity)
Yet stirred up by former injurie,
To rescue Lot, did foure Kings pursue, (Gen. 14.
Their goods tooke, them, and all their people slue.
Holy King David, (none else will I name, (David
I must be briefe, and shun prolixity)
If ever victories did purchase fame,
Never was King more glorious then he.
He vanquish’t all; all that he sought, he wonne,
And left it wholly to his Princely Sonne.
He fought Gods battels, fought against Gods foes, (David forbid by God
Advanced Truth, supprest Idolatry; to build the Temple.
By Gods appoyntment to the field he goes,
Well so might he his quarrels justifie.
“Few by such warrant can approove their fights,
“Yet all that bangle doe pretend like rights.
What man would thinke so good a King, so just,
So prest to fight as he was by his God,
Should be debarred of his holy lust:
And when he wished, should be flat forbod
To build Gods Temple, having so decreed,
And gotten all things that thereto did need.
He was forbid: But well observe the cause, (1 Chron. 22. The
For that he in his time had shed much blood: cause why, note.
O this should make the greatest Monarches pause,
And well advize, if so their cause be good,
Ere they set on their men of warre to kill,
Or mans blood, water-like, on earth to spill.
This was indeed a mystery of State,
(If I mistake not) in Gods highest Court:
I could say somewhat, but I list not prate.
If Doctors teach aright, it doth import,
“That men of Peace whose hands from blood are free,
“To build and rule Gods Church the fittest be.
Such was wise Salomon, the King of Peace, (Salomon.
By God appoynted to that worke so holy: (2 Sam. 7.
All warres in those times God did make to cease, (Eccles. 47. 13.
That to the building he might ply him soly.
All neighbour Kings and Princes him assisted,
And he had from them gifts, such as he listed.
The stones for that faire Temple had been squar’d, (1. King. 6.
And ready hewne, ere they were thither brought:
Of Hammer, Axe, or Iron toole was heard
No noyse at all. Whereby w’are plainly taught,
“That in Gods House, the least harsh stirre, or jarre
“Doth hinder Piety, and devotion marre.
Augustus Cæsar peaceably possessed (Aug. Cæsar.
The Romane Empire, great as ’twas of old,
When as the Sonne of God, our Saviour blessed
Came downe, his sheepe to gather to his fold,
And to lay of his Church the sure foundation,
To be elected out of every Nation.
Then slept the Wolfe and gentle Lambe together, Isa. 11.
The Leopard fierce with the wanton Kid, (A prophecie of the .
The Lion with the harmelesse Oxe, yet neither great peace birth.
(A matter strange) least hurt to other did.at Christ's birth.
A little child might leade them in a string,
Such was the pleasure of our heavenly King.
Thus both the Temple and the Church were founded (The Temple and
By men, and in the dayes of greatest rest: Church founded in peaceable
Not one Alarum in those times was sounded,times.
With Peace the world, totally then was blest:
Blest was that world, so mought this be agen,
If Christian Princes all would say, Amen.
Long was it not, before that old Deceiver (Tyranny against the
Which shifted Adam out of Paradise, Primitive Church
Began to stirre. (Alas, he resteth never
From plotting mischiefe!) First he did devise,
And moove the Kings of every Heathen Nation,
To pluck up cleane this new-begun foundation.
With might & maine they strove, & strongly strock,
Thinking to raze this worke quite with the ground:
They were deceiv’d, it stood upon a rock,
The more they beat, the faster was it found.
The Master-builder grounded it so sure,
As he would have it ever to indure.
So went the building forwards and grew higher,
Untill the Tyrants all of them were wasted:
Nor flouds, nor tempests, sword, nor rage of fire
Could hurt the house: Then soon much people hasted
To harbour there, and set their helping hands,
It to inrich with treasure, fields, and lands.
Great grew this house, and great the family, (The growth of the church.
The like was never on the earth before:
One Father made all one fraternity,
One Law to all alike was, and no more:
One badge at entring in, like food, like hire,
They all meant, and did all one thing desire.
That old make-bate hereat his teeth did grinde, (The divell plots
Swelling with envie till he neere was burst: against the Church.
And where might faild, another way did finde
To execute his malice most accurst.
“When battery wil not serve, mines must be used;
This lesson to his scholers he infused,
To breake that bond of Peace, wherby those friends
Had been so linked one unto the other,
That all did walke one way, aim’d at like ends,
Each tooke his fellow-servant for his brother:
He rais’d a faction in the Family,
That greatly troubled their tranquillity.
Some Rulers of the house were first infected, (Arch-heretiks.
And sucked poyson from the Serpent fell:
An heedlesse rabble shortly were detected,
Misliking some thing, (what they knew not well)
The Founders Lawes and ordinances brake,
And turne-coates false, their Master did forsake.
Yet would they not the place abandon quite,
Nor yeeld to be discarded of their roomes:
Pretending still to have as good a right
As any else: (Fie on them pelting groomes!)
The house by such was oftentimes disturbed,
New started up still, as the old were curbed.
My Muse doth scorne her verses so to wrong,
Which she hath vow’d to pure Divinity;
As once to name those varlets in her song,
Unmeet for place in meere humanity:
“A Renegado more should be detested,
“Then Gentile, never in the Church invested.
One must I name (though worst of all the rest) (Arrius.
Foule Arrius, the divels damned brat:
Whose venome wrought from East unto the West,
None spred so farre, nor lasted like to that.
And though it burst the guts of that vilde wretch,
Yet did th’infection eft soone further stretch.
Th’old Serpents sweetest sonne, Arabian borne (Mahomet
Of bastard seed, much like a filthy Spider:
Suck’t of those dregs (’mongst others) neer out-worne
And spitting made it flye a great deale wider.
His vermine fled the house, and it defied;
All her lawes scorn’d, the founder flat denyed.
Others desir’d, though not deserv’d the name
Of Brotherhood, in that society:
These rave, and curse and ban, voyd of all shame,
Delighting with extreme hostility
To spoyle the House, break lawes, kill young & old,
The Founders name to raze out, if they could.
Alas, too long that hell-hound, Mahound curst,
Hath triumph’d in the ruines of Gods House:
Hee’s swolne up big, (I hope ere long hee’le burst)
Crept from a little hole much like a Mouse:
Now Lion-like he raves, and spoyles the flocke
Of Christ, and of his Person makes a mocke.
More shame it is to those that might redresse it, (Quarrels among
Christ being one in might, and mercy still Christians, reprehended.
Would surely helpe, if we sought to represse it:
But we each others blood had rather spill,
And be at deadly feud for little trifles;
Nay, if I should say right, for very nifles.
Trifles, most part, (my words may be maintained) (The grounds of
Compared with the grounds of Christian faith: them greater in shew,
In speeches scandalous, and slanders fained, then in substance.
Did not deprave what either party saith.
The most, each other doe not understand;
And some that doe, beare not an even hand.
If learned men of temp’rate disposition,
Would reason mildly, rancour laid aside:
They might draw poynts of faith to composition:
But we are led with pre-conceit, or pride.
Some of us call the rest Pelagians,
Who quit them backe with Solifidians.
A fault on both sides, as I doe conceive:
“Faire words (men say) makes friends. Ill must hee heare
“That evill speakes. Such railings us bereave
“Of charity: a vertue that doth beare
“With neighbours faults; and whom wee cannot mend,
“Teacheth us pray for them unto the end.
I looke here to be tax’t by some Divine, (Prevention of a scandall.
As though I tended to newtrality,
And care not on which side the Sunne doth shine,
So we may live lul’d in security.
He doth me wrong if any shall so deeme me,
As I am knowne, so let my friends esteeme me.
I never learnd of Tamberlane to hold, (Tamberlanes opinion of
That God, being one, yet was content each Nation, diversity in
So they liv’d well, might serve him as they would, Religion.
This way, or that, after their Countrey fashion.
My Muse will shortly make you know me better,
Beleeve her, shee’l not falsifie one letter.
To be luke-warme, that is, nor hot, nor cold, (Rev. 3
Is surely naught. Such shall be spewed out:
Yet of extremes, to say I am as bold,
They both are bad, hereof no man makes doubt.
“Excesse of cold, devotion stupifies:
“And too much heate, Loves gentle oyle up dries.
Some of both sides precise, will here extoll (Precisians.
The zeale of Phineas, in the Scripture praised: (Phineas. Numb. 25.
Th’example no man (doubtlesse) dare controll
God for that act, the Actor highly raised.
Who this example to me reades, or cites,
I answere him, Here be no Moabites.
The man which on the Sabbath gath’red stickes, (The stick-gatherer
Was ston’d to death. This cannot be gain-said, stoned.
The best of’s all use more unlawfull trickes
On that high Day. If so we should be paid,
We would be milder to our Christian Brothers,
And as we wish our selves, would doe to others.
One precedent, the precept justifies,
So is the Law taken in it’s full vigour:
Yet was not still the practice so precise,
Nor hath been alwayes used with that rigour:
Examples many might be cited heere,
But that were needlesse, sith the case is cleere.
It grieves my heart (needs must I tell it out) (Rayling among Christians
To reade and heare the raylings of some hot-spurs, taxed.
How shamelesly, among the simple rout,
They bite their neighbours, much like Mastife Curs:
Fie on the Heretike, one cries: Sayes t’other,
Pox o’the Papist, though he were my brother.
Yet most of these, if they were bid to tell
The difference ’twixt Protestant and Papist:
Could say but; T’one side, in the Church I dwell;
T’other, with Pope to live I have no list:
Whereas it’s knowne, as well one side, as th’other,
Call and esteeme the holy Church their mother.
Th’ Apostles, and great Athanasius Creed, (Our concordance
The Pater-noster, and Gods Precepts Ten, in the maine points.
We all beleeve, as in the Church Clarks reade,
And to each Article, we say, Amen.
The holy undivided Trinitie,
We all adore in perfect unitie.
Of Faith and Works, though Volumes large are pen’d Faith and Works.
On either side, full of distinctions subtill;
Yet late great *Doctors, so the matter mend, (*Propter incertitudinem
As neere they reconcile us by their skill. & periculum inanis gloriæ,
“’Tis safest to doe well, yet claime no hire, fiduciam totam in sola Dei “
But waving Merit, Mercy to desire. misericordia & benignitate reponere.
Bellar. 1. 5. de Iustific. c. 7.
And so doe all, when they draw neere their end:
The holiest man that in the Church doth dwell,
What-ever doctrine earst he did defend,
Will say at last: ’Tis comfort t’have done well:
Yet our assurance is, that we relie
On him, who for us on the Crosse did die.
The termes of Trans and Con-substantiation, (The Sacrament.
In matter of the holy Sacrament:
By Schoole-men stampt, to maintaine disputation,
True Christian concord have so rudely rent;
That Christ his coate is thereby all to torne,
Which gloriously was wont his Spouse t’adorne.
What need? Nay, who at first durst be so bold,
To coyne words, by the Scriptures never taught,
Nor in the Prime-Church, or by Doctors old
Once spoken of? Assuredly ’twas naught.
This might suffice to say, and soundly thinke,
That we Christs Body eate, and his Blood drinke.
So spake the Truth; So speakes each true beleever, (Joh. 6.
And so beleeves he, else beleeves in vaine:
Yet must referre the maner to the Giver,
Whose power surpasseth depth of humane braine.
“Faith is the stronger, where no reason leadeth,
“But so beleeves, because so written readeth.
One maine point more of faith that I can see, (Idolatry.
Doth strongly hold the parties both asunder:
That is, the foulest sinne, Idolatry,
Which imputation one side goes-under:
A crime, so full of grosse impiety;
Men that know God, would not commit, say I.
I am not on that side, I doe confesse,
(If siding may be nam’d with charity.)
Yet in this place, sure I can doe no lesse,
Then purge their hearts from such impiety.
I know so many good, devout and pious;
I’me sure th’are not so sacrilegious.
Doubtlesse they doe the power Divine adore,
And know there is none other God but hee;
His heavenly ayde they daily doe implore,
And sticke to him in their necessitie.
To Saints (it seemes) they attribute too much.
Idolatry? I may not say ’tis such:
Not as learn’d men intend it. Be it so,
That skilfull Doctours by strong inference,
Doe urge, that needs it must amount thereto,
And that it can admit none other sense:
“What rightly they distinguish in their heart,
“No Doctor can make one by all his Art.
Yet sure those worships such resemblance have,
And the distinction ’twixt them is so nice;
As never can the vulgar sort behave
Themselves uprightly: nay, all seeming-wise,
Can hardly shun their Shipwrack on these shelves:
God give them grace to looke well to themselves.
Some differences yet there are beside, (Smaller differences
But not so much of Faith, as Policie: of State and Policie.
And those would never keepe us off so wide,
If we were well dispos’d to charity.
The Court, more then the Church of Rome doth grieve,
That we doe not some other points beleeve.
A word’s enough: Shall men of Christians bore,
And rightly in a Christian Church baptized,
Holding those Creeds and points confes’t before,
By any Priest be Anathematized,
For not beleeving jump as Schoole-men teach,
Or ’cause in some slight points he makes a breach?
Those devilish damned Heresies of old (Old damnable Heresies.
That did the Church disquiet in her prime:
When, some Christs God-head; some, his manhood, bold
Were to deny: (A most detested crime:)
Nor none such (thankes to God) with us are found,
We all doe stand upon a better ground.
So many as of one foundation hold, (1. Cor. 3.
And build thereon, though some lay on but wood;
Some hay, or stubble; some againe, pure gold:
These builders are not equall, yet all good.
“He cannot fall that on this Rocke doth bide;
“He may be shaken, but he cannot slide.
Ye Princes great, and Prelates reverend, (To Princes and Prelates.
The chiefest Pillars in the House of God:
Beare with the weake, doe gently them amend,
Be not too sharpe in striking with the rod.
“Though some excel, & some come short of others,
“That hinders not, but we may all call Brothers.
W’are Christians all, and glory in that Name, (Wee are all Christians.
As did our Grandsires many hundred yeeres:
Except some late ones (more they are to blame)
Who rather would be called, Jesus pheers.
“Christs person to divide, is worse, God wote,
“A great deale, then to rent his seamelesse coate.
Can factions singularity be good? (1. Cor. 1. 12.
Did Christ or his Apostles teach us so?
Such lessons yet I never understood,
And many learned Doctors tel me, No.
“Faith, Meekenesse, Love, and true Humility,
“The farest markes of soundest Christians be.
I write in zeale, but not in bitternesse,
As wishing peace and concord with my heart;
If Church-men shew I erre in more or lesse,
I shall be glad to learne, it is my part.
“Force is no meane, mens consciences to win;
“Perswasion opes the doore that lets faith in.
Once more I’me bold t’addresse my speech to you,
Princes and Prelates, ruling Church and State:
O bid your private quarrells all adue,
And cause your people bury all their hate.
Command and teach ’mong Brethren unitie,
That in one quarrell all may live and die.
Peace-makers; blessed so ye shall be named, (Mat. 5.
(And be indeed) Gods children to him deare: Peace-makers blessed.
Like motive can by no mans wit be framed
As this; In Scripture ’tis a promise cleare,
Doe you the deed, the promise hee’l fulfill,
Who never brake his word, nor never will.
This Peace once settled (would mine eyes might see't) (An Invitation
And discord, all deepe buried under ground: to a most holy warre
We might intend a Quarrell farre more meet, against the Turke.
Where Victory should worthily be crown’d
With true Renowne, and Immortality;
In such a Quarrell ’twere a ioy to die.
A holy Quarrell ’gainst Christs greatest Foe,
Invites us all to hasten to the field:
Into that Quarrell, he that would not goe
In Armory, deserves not beare a shield:
Nor to be ranged under Christ his Banner,
Or stil’d his Souldier in any manner.
Heere would I wish our zeale to burne as fire, (Heere let zeale sway.
And that no smoake the flame of it should smother:
Let old incourage yong; the aged Sire
His lustie Sonne, and each good man his brother.
Men would be had, & meanes. Who will not give
With a free heart, those Legions to relieve?
I have a’State, though small, of sonnes good store;
These would I tender at my Soveraignes feet;
Give gladly after my degree, or more,
Thousands besides, I’me sure would doe the like.
James, Brittaines King, of Christian Faith Defender,
In Christ his cause, his utmost aide would render.
So Spaine and France, and other Kings about,
Princes and States holding Christen beliefe;
Would shew themselves as forward, ther’s no doubt,
The meanest (to his power) as the chiefe.
And were not such a warre against the Turke,
Of Christian unity, a blessed worke?
A blessed worke indeed, and better farre,
Then be the workes wherein we stand ingaged:
It seemes some adverse Planet, or crosse Starre,
The hearts and wits of Christians hath inraged:
Nay, of Gods Justice, it doth all proceed.
Who can avoyd the things he hath decreed?
What’s past cannot be holpen; That's most sure,
Th’event doth shew, that God would have it so:
In future contingents we may procure
Redresse, and shun some things would work our woe.
“Though God doe all by his ore-ruling will, (God worketh
“Yet we must move and strive, and not sit still. by his Instruments.
Who knows his will, till things be come to passe?
His working no way doth our wills inthrall:
Though he be Author, yet we nathelasse
Be instruments, and so doe worke withall.
“Most wondrous in his providence he is,
“Against our wills, we ought accomplish his.
As when a Ship swift driven by the winde, (An apt simile.
With full swolne sailes doth hasten to the East,
A Ship-man (casting matters in his minde)
Goes stalking on the decke towards the West:
Anon perhaps he turnes, and walkes againe
Slowly, that way the Ship doth drive amaine.
Walke he which way he list, or talke, or sleepe,
The Pilot close at helme his course holds on;
The Ship skuds forward swiftly in the deepe,
And so comes safely to the Port anon:
The Master-Pilot he doth all he will,
Yet worke the Saylors too, and sit not still.
Gods Judgements, holy David likeneth well (Gods Judgements are
To the great Deepe: An apt similitude. deepe and unsearchable.
What man so rash, will take on him to tell Psal. 36.
The doings of the watrie multitude,
In th’Oceans boundles bottome? Or what matter
Lies underneath that deepest brinish water?
A foole, or mad man, well he might be thought,
That would his knowledge vaunt of things so hid:
More fooles that to beleeve him would be brought:
Yet farre more mad, who prate of things forbid,
In Gods deepe secret providence Divine,
The search whereof, he wills us to decline.
Revealed things, to us and to our seed (Deut. 29. 29.
Belong of right; so holy Writ doth teach:
In them must be our exercise indeed,
At unrevealed things we may not reach.
“The Fly is burnt that flutters in the flame,
“And pride that soares too high, must fall with shame.
An earthly King, if he be wise in heart, (Pro. 25. 3.
Is deepe withall, not easie to be sounded:
For Regall ruling is no common Art,
Kings Councels upon secrecie are grounded.
Therein the King of Heaven they resemble,
That’s to be wise (in truth) not to dissemble.
The King of Kings, whose Wisedome farre excels (A comparison.
Mans wit and cunning, more by much, then all
The waters of the Sea, when most it swells,
One drop that from a deawie bunt doth fall:
He will not have that Ashes, Earth, and Clay,
Should further search then he hath said we may.
His pleasure is to hold us in suspence,
And make us doubtfull rest ’twixt feare and hope:
That we may leane all on his providence,
Setting his will and pleasure for our scope.
“Some crosse befalls us, tending to our good, (Evils sometimes turne
“Though not of us (at first) so understood. to good: and on the contrary.
Againe, on th’other side it may fall out,
That things esteem’d to be for our good hap:
Before some months or yeeres doe wheele about,
Bring on our pates an heavy after-clap.
“Abuse of good things makes them turne to evill,
“Through mans owne fault, & malice of the devill.
Haman growne great in favour of the King, (Examples.
Bent to destroy the Jewes all in one day: Haman.
Furnish’t with power, and with the Royall ring, Hest. 3. 10.
Set up a gallowes for poore Mordocay.
Then were Gods people neere unto confusion,
Expecting of their lives a sad conclusion.
But God the prayers of his servants heard,
And sent them succour in their greatest neede;
The honest Jewe to honour was prefer'd, (Mordocay.
Haman attending on his royall Steed,
Was forc’t himselfe to ride that curtoll Jade,
Which lately he for Mordocay had made.
The Princes seeking Daniel to entrap, (Daniel, and the
When once they had him in the Lyons Denne: Princes. Chap. 6.
Thought themselves seated in good Fortunes lap,
And next the King, to be the chiefest men.
“(So may it fare with men of like condition
“Who trouble States through envie or ambition).
The Sinne of Adam brought on him and his (Adam.
Gods heavie curse, and lost him Paradise:
Then was he cleane deprived of all blisse,
And from true Justice, subject made to vice.
As he had falne from God, the creatures all
From their obeysance due to him, did fall.
The Woman likewise Actor in the Crime, (Eve.
With paines in childbirth (heavie doome) was paid:
Yet see how God vouchsaft in after time,
To have that sharpe, with gentle sweets allayd.
That’s made a meane to save her soule from hell, (1. Tim. 2.
So shee ’bide faithful, striving to doe well.
The Blessed Seede was promis’d to restore,
What man by his owne wickednesse had lost:
Ten times more blest then Adam stood before,
Are Gods Elect: Though for a season tost
With surges on this Sea of Miseries:
Heav’ns joyes exceede far th’earthly Paradise.
Those foolish builders of the Babel Towre, (Babel.
Amazed at their Speeches strange confusion, Gen. 11.
Suppos’d the world t’have ended in that howre,
Or that they were abus’d by some Illusion.
A whiles they stood astonied at the matter,
Th’one mused much to heare the other chatter.
Had Bacchus Liquor bin as rife that time
As when th’Apostles spake in wondrous sort: (Act. 2.
Each would have thought his mate full of new wine,
And of that change (at first) have made a sport.
But when they found the uncouth alterations,
The sundry tongues, grew into sundry nations.
They parted friendly, not for lacke of ground,
As Lot and Abraham in some ages after: (Gen. 13.
But, for one kenned not the others sound,
Their talke would stir up choller, or move laughter.
A gentle way acquaintance old to sever,
And closer knit like Languagers together.
Belike those that were neerest joyn’d in blood,
In speech were then divided most asunder:
No Father his owne sonne there understood,
No sister, brother Greater was the wonder,
Fitter the worke: That so Affinitie
Might not meete with neere consanguinity.
Thus sooner was the World inhabited,
In Regions more remote from Shinar plaine:
Therin the will of God accomplished, (Gen. 11. 8, 9.
Albeit those People had another ayme. Vers. 4.
This Chaos-like confusion was meant,
And turned to th’worlds greater ornament.
Had God beene pleas’d, a thousand waies beside,
He could have stop’t the raising of that Steeple,
He lack’t not other meanes t’abate the pride,
And dash the purpose of that braine-sicke People.
This lik’t him best; To them it was a crosse.
Though after-ages finde thereby no losse.
Bee’t so, that th’Hebrew doth without compare, (The Hebrew Tongue
Exceed each other Language of mankind, excelleth any one.
As learned Clerks, noting the myst’ries rare,
Doe cleerly prove to all that be not blind.
Yet for some purpose, other Tongues doe well:
That, may one, but not joyntly all, excell.
The sacred tongue for sacred use was best,
Fit to expresse the worlds strange Creation,
Natures of plants, herbes, Angels, men, and beast,
Sun, Moone, the Stars, world-dwellers propagation:
With such like matters in that Language pend,
And so (’t may be) ’twas framed to that end.
Not, that it should promiscuously b’applyde
To every science and humane profession;
God (haply) other Language did provide,
Foreseeing man by his most vaine digression,
From sacred stories would decline to fabling,
He sent him tongues fit for such idle babbling.
In Hebers line the holy tongue and seed
Were solely settled; all the rest profane,
To Gods true service tooke but little heed,
Their thoughts, their tongues, their studies all were vaine.
So whil’st Gods Church was to one Nation bound,
In other men, and tongues, small grace was found,
Till Peter by a vision taught us cleere, (Act. 10.
No Nation on the earth uncleane to call: All Nations & al Tongues,
And that the holy Ghost vouchsaft t’appeare sanctified at one time.
In cloven tongues, guiding th’Apostles all,
With Gentile-language, as with Hebrew speech,
The sacred myst’ries of Gods Word to teach.
Thinke, how those builders all amaz’d did stare,
When each heard other prate he knew not what:
Thinke likewise, how these last confounded were,
How wist they look’t, how much they mus’d thereat,
To heare one mouth at once all tongues expresse:
Both sorts were like distracted, as I ghesse.
A miracle, the great’st for wonderment,
That after Christs Ascension hath been wrought:
It strucke the hearers with astonishment,
And to the Church store of beleevers brought.
All Nations and all tongues were sanctifide,
The curse of Babel-builders nullifide.
Since then, the Artes, the Sciences humane,
The workes of Poets, and Philosophers,
The learned writings of great Scribes profane,
Historians Greeke, and Latine Orators,
With all professors in humanity,
Are meet attendants on Divinity.
What doth this world more grace and beautifie, (In variety, is Beautie,
Then change of fashions, multiplicitie and Delight.
Of Languages pleasing variety,
Which sweetly seasons loath’d saciety?
“The man well skil’d in tongues of sundry lands,
“High in esteem with Church & States-men stands.
That famous King of Pontus, Mithridate, (Mithridates spake
Who ruled severall Nations twenty twaine: 22. languages.
When they Embassies to him did relate,
In their owne tongues could answere all againe.
And was not this a greater grace, thinke ye,
Then to have knowne but’s mothers A.B.C?
Amongst the best Divines that lately wrote,
Esteemed by chiefe Church-men of our age:
I have not knowne one of more speciall note,
Then he that deckt Gods Booke in euery Page, (Arias Montanus.
With seven severall tongues; each yeelding light,
The sacred sense (somewhere) to hit aright.
Thus, sundry tongues and their interpretation, (1. Cor. 10. 12.
A speciall gift is of the holy Spirit:
Th’Apostle notes it for a commendation,
Thankes God, that he himselfe excelled in it. (1 Cor. 14. 18.
“Loe, God a curse can turne into a blessing,
“For those of men, his holy faith professing.
This drives men more Gods wisedome to admire, (Gods providence
And wonder at his forme of government: wonderfull.
Instructs us, that we ought not once aspire
To search, but waite vpon experiment.
“The rarenesse of events falne out in fine,
“Makes us both feare, and love the power Divine.
The frequent, set, and ordinary sway
Of things in nature strange and admirable:
All deepe regard thereof drives cleane away,
Onely (perhaps) we see them amiable.
“Hence Providence procures more admiration,
“Then doth Gods wondrous work of the Creation.
Suns course and Moones; Seas ebbs & floods, though strange,
Yet obvious unto all peoples eyes;
Mooves us much lesse, then doth the sudden change
Of States or Kingdomes: When the low doth rise,
The high falls downe, ere men can fully learne,
Or causes whence it comes to passe, discerne.
To thinke of Saul, and royall Salomon, (Saul, Salomon, &c.
Great Kings, once highly seated in Gods favour:
So of Nabuchodonosor for one,
And him, who hanging, turn’d unto our Saviour.
The different lives, and ends of these, and like,
Into a strange amazement doth me strike.
Who sayes he is not heerewithall confounded,
And beaten cleane from reasons fraile defence:
I say, of flesh and blood hee’s not compounded;
Or if he be, hath lost all humane sense.
As well as others, one thing I can see,
That is, in this point nothing doe I see.
O boundlesse, groundlesse, bottomlesse, broad Sea,
Of Gods Almighty Wisedome, and Judgements!
Inscrutable, Ineffable they bee;
No forecast, what he hath decreed prevents.
Blest be his Name, his will fulfilled bee;
So sing the Saints in heaven: so say wee.
Of Kingdomes and of Empires, all that bee, (The bounds of all Kingdomes
Or were, or shall be, God hath set them bounds: set by God.
The times likewise and seasons, none save hee
Can let; but sometimes they must dance their rounds.
What need I cite examples? every child
Step’t out of Grammar, store of such can yeeld.
Who knowes the causes why God first did raise
That barbarous Tyrant to so huge a height:
As now the best part of our world he swayes,
And crushes all his neighbours with his waight?
“With modestie to ghesse, is none offence;
“And with mistakes herein, men may dispence.
Perhaps (yet) some fore-promise made of old (Conjecturall causes of
By God, to some of Abrahams by-borne sonnes, the Turks greatnesse.
Or Nephews; (to say sooth, I am not bold,
Yet this ’mong other ghesses currant runnes) 1.
Might be extended to these people fierce,
And give the power through many lands to pierce.
Alb’it out of the Covenant they were throwne,
And to Gods people ever stood adverse:
Yet that they should be Princes great, ‘twas showne, (Gen. 16. 10.
And that their Off-spring should grow numberlesse.
None vexed Israel more then such By-broods,
So these doe Christians in their angry moods.
What if God would, these people fierce and fell, (2
On wildest Mountaines of the world y bred,
Should be remoov’d in milder climes to dwell;
That being there with gentler ayre long fed,
Their native fiercenesse might weare out in time,
And they grow milder in a milder clime!
Or graft upon the stocks of civill plants, (3.
From them should some civility derive:
Or’mongst them dwelling, find out their own wants; (4.
And by example, or by Precept thrive.
“(Of secrecies in Gods deepe providence,
“We ghesse, but not define, without offence.)
So the good Husband-man from out his crops, (An apt comparison.
Grubs Up some gribbles of a Crabbish kinde
Set in his Orchard, there he proynes and lops,
And fits them, as seemes best unto his minde.
From fruitlesse Shrubs, & stubbed Stocks, as these,
They grow at length to pleasant fruitfull trees.
What ere they were, or what so was the cause
Of their great growth: (belike not one alone)
I boldly say, and neither feare nor pause,
The sinnes of Christians, without doubt was one. (5.
“Contempt of God, neglecting of his Word, (Sinnes of Christians.
“Weake faith, ill maners, still draw on the sword.
So far’d it alwayes with the stubborne Jewes,
As we may see and reade in holy Writ:
Therefore to us it ought not seeme as newes,
If for like sinnes, we with like rods be smit.
“God changeth not, his Justice is the same,
“Lay not on him, but on our selves, the blame.
Yet as to them, so to us hee’s a Father;
Though he correct, let us observe the end:
“We should not faint, but take it kindly rather; (Job 5. 17
“He beateth not to hurt us, but to mend,
“Sometimes to try how we will take his rod,
“And cause us flie to him, as to our God.
A sea of matter swimmeth in my braine,
Whereon once lanched I might saile so long,
As hard it were by steering backe againe
To reach the Harbour: Therefore left my Song,
Beyond my scope should to a volume rise,
The summe of all in few words i’le comprise.
Of one cause lastly, and no more I’le write, (6.
(I hold it firmely next unto my Creed) (The last cause by the
And if herein I hit the marke aright, Author conjectured.
I hope the better in my wish to speed:
“Turks pow’r is rais’d so great, therby to make us,
“Unto a Christian concord to betake us.
If brothers chance to fall at bate together, (An apt similitude inducing
As in their choller oft times it doth hap: xto Christian unity.
Though friends intreating can prevaile with neither,
Till each on other hath bestow’d a rap:
Yet if a stranger strike one, they’le soone gree,
And both fall on that stranger lustily.
This circumcised miscreant is he, (Incouragement
That strikes and beates us while we be at strife: against the Turke
Let us like brothers, (as in Christ we be)
Fall both upon him, rid him of his life,
Or send him packing over Hellespont,
And thence pursue him unto Acheront.
Ther’s one lookes for him, and provides a chaire
To set him in, it flameth all with fire:
Of that vast kingdome he is like be heire;
There shall he have what here he did desire.
Strange griping torments, these were his delight:
Cymmerian darknesse, as he hated light.
Topheth of old was made for such as he, (Isa. 30.
Tyrants that hate Gods truth, and vexe his Saints;
He cannot scape Gods just severity,
That scornes the Orphans, and the Widowes plaints.
“Good Kings in heaven on highest thrones shal sit:
“Fell tyrants low’st lye in the boundlesse pit.
Our Fathers rowz’d these Tigers from their dens,
And sought them out even at Jerusalem:
We sit at home not much unlike brood-hens,
And now are bearded at our dores by them.
“A little dog (men say) at his owne dore,
“Will bite a Mastiffe, though he dye therefore.
O how are we become degenerate!
Where is that ancient vertue of our Sires!
How can we suffer checks by such a mate!
Or let him in our houses kindle fires!
“First quench at home, then set flames in their tow’rs:
“That is the safest way to secure ours.
I long to see this businesse set on foot,
And thinke each yeere till it begin, mispent:
Better it is the sooner we goe too’t,
And give him not long leisure to prevent.
“The matter once begun well, were halfe ended.
“Best shal they speed, that best with God are friended.
My Genius tels me ’tis our Fathers will
It should be so, and so ’twill be in fine:
Yet I confesse it goes beyond my skill,
Of times and seasons rightly to divine.
“I wish, the child already borne should see it,
“And him unborne, that will not say, So be it.
Pardon my Muse for striking on this note, (The Authour craves
She is so much delighted in the tune: pardon for his zeale.
Nor pen, nor inke needs, she sings all by rote,
As merrily as any bird in June.
She may crave, leave while she doth neither flatter,
Nor chide, but closely keepes her to the matter.
Once more I will be bold to speake a word (To the Kings Majesty.
(I hope without offence) to my dread Lord;
Here is a cause wherein to draw your Sword,
Whereby your memory shall be deeply mor’d,
Bud and beare branches ever fresh and greene,
Whil’st men on earth, or Stars in heaven been.
I thinke I doe perswade not much awry,
Nor greatly straying from your Princely minde:
If so, then sure the better hope have I,
Acceptance of my zealous wish to finde.
“He that perswades a man to what he meant,
“May hope for his good will not to be shent.
Would other Kings and Princes bore like mind,
And were so forwards to this holy warre:
The cause should soone a glorious passage finde,
And not be check’t by any private Jarre.
I cleerly see, if you be not the meane,
For one whole age it must be dashed cleane.
A word to you, ye worthy men at Armes, (To men at Armes.
Commanders great, that Armies know to rule,
And other Chieftaines train’d oft in Alarm’s;
Bold in attempts, not-used to recule:
Shew readinesse unto this sacred Battle,
Brandish your Swords, & let your Armours rattle.
I am perswaded, some such live abroad
Among Christs people, like those worthy wights,
Huniades, and Scanderbeg that rode
Attended on with many matchlesse Knights,
Over the neckes of Mahometan bands,
And slue whole hundreds with their proper hands.
Long is’t not when that Transilvanian Prince, (Transilvanian Sigismond.
Hight Sigismond, came little short of those:
And yet much later, even scarce one yeere since,
The hardy Polaiks chast their doughty foes: Polanders.
Making them glad, sit still and keepe their bounds,
E’re while incroching on their neighbors grounds.
At Agria the last great battell fought, (Agria Battell. Ann. 1596.
Wherein the Turkish Monarch shew’d his head:
Our victors on base pillage turn’d their thought,
And gave new heart to them who hartlesse fled,
Leaving their Great Lord neere captivity,
Onely our foule covetice made him scape free.
Lepantoes service may not be let slip, (Lepanto.
Where John of Austrich taught them to their cost,
That in Sea-fight, with Galley or with Ship,
The Christians their old courage had not lost.
There came no hundred thousand fresh supplies,
In such (I reade) their chiefest boldnesse lies.
Looke backe, observe how first they entred Greece, (Greece.
And wan that Countrey fairest under skie:
Brought in by some their neighbours for to fleece:
Which done, they skinned both sides easily.
Th’Imperiall City won through martiall might,
By Mahomet, great Souldier, doe him right.
No more such Mahomets I hope they’l have, (Tokens of the Turkes
Their Great Lords, exercise of Armes neglect: declining.
Their Janisaries larger license crave,
By them both Lords, and Leaders oft are check’t.
Good tokens that their State will grow no higher, (Verified by their
But that their utter downefall drawes the nigher. deposing and
murthering Osman their Late Emperour.
Of Asiatike warres ther’s lesse account,
Their Veni, Vidi, Vici, fell out right:
Our Europeans those folke farre surmount,
In all respects, as best Historians write.
On Europes ayde he sets his chiefest rest,
He may have more elsewhere, but these are best.
What great atchievemets have they wrought of late, (Hungary.
Since first they set their foot in Hungarie?
Exposed to them thorough private hate,
And kept by fraud, and Turkish trechery:
Protectors to defend an Infants right,
Brought in by guile, and holding fast by might.
There are they held at bay by handfuls small
Of Christian Princes, private quarrels plying:
They hold their ground (and that I thinke is all)
I trust it shewes their Empire lyes a dying;
Yet will not breath it’s last without more helpe,
Joyne all good men to strangle such a whelpe.
What may the power of Christian Kings united,
Princes and States (thinke ye) be able doe;
All to this sacred warre at once excited,
Imploring meekly Christ his aide thereto?
All’s in Gods hand: But in mans judgement sure,
They could not such assaylants long indure.
Their numbers great should not be greatly feared,
Too many may doe harme, like as too few:
Forces enow of Christians will be reared,
Men fit to doe, and not to make a shew.
Next under God, good leaders doe the deed;
Such, ever make good Souldiers at a need.
Their name is greater then their puisance,
Yet this in no wise should be fondly slighted:
“Counsell is it great actions doth advance,
“The best advis’d, is commonly best righted.
Plenty of both sorts Christian Countries yeeld,
As well for Councell-tables, as for field.
Our cause is Gods, and will not want good-speed, (Our cause is Gods.
Unlesse we marre it by our owne defaults:
We are assured of his helpe at need,
If counsell guide: and if in all assaults
“We courage have, it boots not cry for ayd,
“If we like cowards shrinke, or be dismayd.
At Joshuahs entrance to the holy Land, (Joshua
Though God did promise to goe with him than;
Yet oft he laid upon him this command,
Be strong, have courage, see thou play the man. (Josh. 1. 6,7.
He said not, Sit thou still, I will doe all:
“We must lift up our selves, else must we fall.
God is not pleased wonders still to show,
Nor worke without fit meanes (take that for Gospel)
Yet is it meet againe, all men should know
Who tyes him to the meanes, doth not doe well.
“The Kings high way is best for us to keepe,
“We may be drowned if we wade too deepe.
When Moses brought the people neere the Sea, (Moses.
And they shut in ’twixt it and Wildernesse,
Pursu’d by Pharo: They began this plea,
Why hast thou been to us so mercilesse? (Exod. 14. 10.
Better we had in Egypt dig’d our graves,
Then in this Desart dye, or be made slaves.
Stand still (said he) feare not, but be ye bold, (Vers. 13. 14.
Your God himselfe anon will for you fight:
You need doe nought, if ye your tongues can hold,
The Lord on your behalfe, shall shew his might.
So did he in the Churches Infancy, (Miracles in the Churches infancy.
To shew his power, and faith beget thereby.
This may not alwayes be. For were it so, (They are not ordinary,
Faith were a vertue of the lesse regard, and why.
Confirmed daily by new wonders mo:
Such faith deserved but a poore reward.
“Then as for our parts, let us doe our best,
“And with good comfort leave to God the rest.
Our warre with them I hold to be as just, (The justnesse of this
As that of Abram, when he rescu’d Lot: war. Gen. 14.
Robbed we are by them, and needs they must,
Restore us what they wrongfully have got.
’Tis shame to let them hold that, and seeke more,
’Twill not be well, untill we cleere the skore.
Of Lands and Countries they have dispossest us,
And tooke our goods away by violence:
Our houses faire, where we were wont to rest us,
And Churches where we us’d with reverence
To worship God: There do they serve the devill,
And their false prophet, author of this evill.
The bodies of our brothers, friends, and kinne,
Under most servile bondage they detaine:
Their soules (alas) they drowne in deadly sinne,
To seeke of them release, it is but vaine.
If all this cannot rowze us out of sleepe,
Let good men pray, and women fall to weepe.
“Prescription’s no good warrant to doe wrong,
“It rather makes the injurie the worse:
They have usurped Christ his rights too long,
So they deserve of him the greater curse.
They must be scourged with his Rod: and we
His instruments to execute, must be.
They have already had on us their fill,
We take it as the guerdon of our sinne:
God rais’d them up his purpose to fulfill,
When they have done, I hope we shall begin.
We wish them good, for th’evils all they did us,
Because our Saviour in his Gospell bid us. (Math. 5. 44.
We wish their good, but they will not be taught,
Like Adders deafe, they will not heare our charmes:
To their owne good by force they must be brought,
Instead of tongues, we must apply our Armes.
“When arms shal cause the yeeld, the tongues may teach,
“The way wherby their soules shall heaven reach.
That worke becommeth Christian Kings indeed,
And Christians all, if ever any other:
Win more beleevers to the Christen Creed,
Make of a wretched Infidell, a Brother:
Inlarge Christs Kingdom, wicked livers mending:
Lift soules to heaven, late to hell-ward tending.
How many thousand Christian hearts will dance
Within their captive bodies, when they heare
The holy Legions, ready to advance,
And when it’s surely bruted, they draw neere?
He knows, that long hath fettered laine in chaines,
And free’d doth walk, inlarged from those paines.
“There is no greater worke of Pietie, (A worke of Piety.
“Wherein a Christian can his faith expresse,
“Then ridding Christians from captivity,
“And yeelding comfort to the comfortlesse.
Admit there were no motive but this one,
It were enough to moove an heart of stone.
But there be many more, that would require
A Volume, if they should be written all:
This onely is my scope and my desire,
To touch a few: thereby (perhaps) to call
Some man of deeper judgement to goe on,
And finish that which I have but begun.
Heere zeale (I see) transports me somewhat farre,
(I to those miscreants beare a Christian hate)
As when a Captaine, Victor in the warre,
Pursues in chase, the vanquish’t to their gate.
I cannot leave them, ’tis against my heart;
But wish them tam’d by might, or else by Art.
I doe behold, as plaine as in a Vision,
The progresse and event of this great worke;
“Ther’s nothing else but our unkind division, (Our division
“That doth uphold the Empire of the Turke. upholds the Turke.
Breake off this prop, their Kingdomes you shal see,
’Mong Christian Princes soone divided bee.
Some man (perhaps) will say, I doe but dreame, (The Author prevents
Or growing old, doe now begin to dote: a cavill.
What should I meane to handle such a theame?
Out of my Element, I speake at rote.
A Scholler never trained in the field,
In such exploits can slender reasons yeeld.
True Sir, I never serv'd but in my Studie;
For acting much I have no cause to boast:
And yet I feele my braine nothing so muddie,
But that I partly see who rules the roast:
The plots, the lets, the aymes at other ends,
And so ’twill be till Christians all be friends.
Friends if we were, it might be made appeare,
My speech bewrayes nor dreaming, neither dotage:
Yet truely never was’t my meaning heere
Ought to prescribe, but onely to incourage.
This may be granted to a Christian Scholler,
And put no man of State in any choller.
That good old Hermite Peter, (whom I name (Peter the Hermite.
For honours sake) by his strong perswasion,
(Would I could doe the like) Author became
Of that most famous Christian invasion;
When Godfrey marched to the Holy Land,
And tooke it from the Mahometans hand.
Faire Isabell, that famous Queene of Spaine, ( Q. Isabell of Spaine.
In zeale to Christian Faith, and pure devotion,
When small appearance was of worldly gaine,
At her owne charge imbrac’t that happy motion,
Which two wise Salomons before rejected. (K. Henry 7.
Who knowes not what thereby hath bin effected? (K. Ferdinand.
Dame Margaret, for pious deeds renown’d, (La. Margaret Countesse
Great, by the greatnesse of her Royall Sonne: of Richmond.
In Court, as glorious as a Princesse crown’d,
With Robes and Jewels shining like the Sunne;
Exceeded all that age in Pietie,
And zeale t’affurther Christianity.
Loathing foule warres among the flocke of Christ:
So those might be compos’d and quarrels ended:
Her selfe (of subjects greatest and the high’st)
Vow'd to leave State; yea, thus low she descended; ( Expressed
A Lawndresse for the Christian Campe to worke, in an ancient Table
And spare nor paines, nor cost against the Turke. at her Picture.
Example rare, exceeding imitation!
Yet if chiefe Rulers in Christs Common-weale
Did once begin; a pious emulation
Would soone produce a common Christian zeale.
The hearts of many good men are inflam’d,
To see that Monster overcome and tam’d.
A Bishop great, and holy Martyr old, (Cam. Brit.
(I must esteeme him more then all know why) (Glamorgan.
Of whom, a little Modicum I hold,
As have done divers of mine Ancestry:
Me thinkes he bids me mind that holy place,
Where some of them received Knightly grace.
Thousands have like incouragements, and more;
But some stand up and make another motion:
What shall we gaine? And let us heare wherefore (An objection.
We should ingage us in this hot commotion?
We must be well maintained, well regarded,
Well furnished, and lastly well rewarded.
Favour of Kings and Princes, doth infuse
Into great Leaders, spirits to begin:
Honour attending, makes the Gentry choose,
T’ adventure lives, that they may Trophies win.
The Souldiers gape for gold and silver store;
So they have that, most of them seeke no more.
Heer’s for you all (my friends) of every ranke, (Answere.
Your Victories shall stretch beyond your scopes:
No man his lot shall draw out with a blanke,
You shall be lifted all above your hopes.
Fame, Honour, Riches, Countreys, Citties stately,
Shall all be yours, that were your foe-mens lately.
Silver and gold, which they in ravenous sort,
Have scrapt and hoorded up for many a yeere,
Shall be dispers’d abroad to make you sport,
Your labours will returne you that good cheere.
In Armory, Shields shall ye all deserve,
If so the rules of Gentry you observe.
Among the greatest you shall have your share
In Townes, and Fields, you need not fall to bate:
Each one may take enough, and much to spare,
No good man shall have cause t’envie his mate.
“Ill borne and bred is he that cannot tell
“How t’hold himselfe content when he is well.
Glory of Countreys, Greece, Europes faire Garden, (Greece.
And that renowned Seate of Constantine:
There to be seated, were a Souldiers guerdon,
And to beare rule, meet for a Royall Line.
Pittie it is fierce Wolves should there inhabite,
To hunt the thence, each Shepherds dog shuld bite.
Nor list we all repose our selves in Greece,
To new atchivements, great hearts would aspire:
As did Greekes Worthies for the Golden fleece,
Through water working passage, and through fire.
The Holy Land and Citie daily cry, (The holy Land
For Christians there to live, where Christ did die.
His blessed and most comfortable birth, (Motives thither.
His wonders there in great abundance wrought,
His conversation yeelding heavenly mirth,
His holy Doctrine in those Regions taught,
His fastings and his prayers practis’d there,
His stripes & suffrings, which most painefull were,
His death, and his soule-saving Passion,
His Sepulcher wherein his Body lay,
His most illustrious Resurrection,
His conquest over death on the third day;
All these move zealous Christians with their hearts,
To chase those Infidels from out those parts.
As in a Forrest thicke I am enwrap’t,
Run in with ease, but know not how get out:
My Soule (it seemes) is with a fury rapt,
And I, as in a whirle-poole wheel’d about.
Floods of new matter would me overwhelme,
Wer’t not for one that sitteth at the helme.
Peace, Period of my Song commands me stay,
And doe to her the rights that I have vowed:
Therewith she points, and sets me in the way,
So I (as bound) of her advice allowed.
And thus my wandring Spirits recollecting,
I bend to her, all by-discourse rejecting.
Peace Universall that just warre will breed, (Peace Universall and
(A worke aym’d at by each good Christian man) Perpetual, the end
Perpetuall to us, and to our seed, of that warre.
And what will be the state of Christians than?
I leave you to your owne conjectures free,
’Twere folly t’utter all one doth foresee.
Who is so blind, that doth not see th’ effects?
Or who so dull, doth not compre’nd the blisse?
Who is so gracelesse, that such grace neglects?
Or to reject it, who so devilish is?
Blind, dull, ungracious, devilish, I them call;
Although I hope few such there be at all.
Fewer the better, yet there is no ground
So good by nature, so manur’d by skill;
But ’mongst the wheate some cockle will be found,
The Husband-man may weed them if he will.
Such weeds pluck up, Grand-masters of great fields,
Your land thereby the better burthen yeelds.
Your Kingdomes are your fields, where Peace well sowne,
Shall cast a crop will give you full content;
The workemen and the Reapers are your owne,
They cannot bring you in a better rent:
Such Justment ’tis (take this advice of mine)
You need not raise the rent, nor aske a fine.
Blest be the Plow-Swaines which such seed do sowe,
Blest be the grounds that bring us such increase,
Blest be the workemen, reape they, either mowe,
Blest be the Garners, stored with such Peace:
Blest altogether Owners, fields, and Swaines,
The greediest need not gape for greater gaines.
Ther’s choice of seed in every sort of graine; (A simile. Good and
Some light, some worme-eate, some bruiz’d with the flaile, bad
Some good; Take that, for feare you sowe in vaine, seed of Peace.
Or at your Harvest, hopes may hap to faile.
“All is not gold, that like to gold doth show,
“The touch-stone teacheth true from false to know.
Peace true, and such as Christians should imbrace, (Peace true
The fruit of love and blessed charity, and Christian.
Must rule our hearts, and not make shew in face, (Col. 3. 15.
When cancred hatred lurketh inwardly.
“Fie on dissembling, ’tis a loathsome crime,
“Yet growne the common fault of this our time.
Peace, Jacobs sonnes, Simeon and Levi, (Gen. 34
Spake to the Shechemites like brethren seeming: (False or counterfeit
When as their hearts were bent to Trecherie, Peace.
The others no such falshood once misdeeming.
Their Father for that fact gave them a curse,
For punishment there could not be a worse.
“Peace in the mouth, oft harbours hate in heart,
“’Tis hard to know a friend by outward lookes,
“A wise man must beware: There is an Art
Of fayning Peace, some write it in their Bookes.
Joab kist, kindly spake; How fares my Brother? (Joab. 2.
Imbrac’t with one hand, stabbed with the other. (Sam. 20.
Peace, false Antiochus and his wicked bands (Antiochus. 1.
Spake to the Jewes, though they sad mischief meant; (Mac. 1. 29.
For when the Citie fell into their hands,
They murthred some, and some to bondage sent.
“Bad men sticke not to falsifie their oath,
“Good men, on their bare word, wil speak but troth.
Peace, (Fained worship) Herod did pretend (Herod. Mat. 2.
Unto the Wise-men, hoping to o’re-reach them:
When as our Saviours murther was his end,
As God by th’Angel in a dreame did teach them.
“A murthrous mind cloak’t with a faire pretence,
“Doth not diminish, but increase th’offence.
Peace, or (Hayle Master) Judas, caytife wretch (Judas. Mat. 26.
Spake, when his Lord he purpos’d to betray:
That friendlike glozing was a cunning fetch,
His Person unto strangers to bewray. Vers 48.
“Judas disciples hath, had, will have still;
“Their end must be as his, for all their skill.
Peace, Machiavell grand master of deceits (Machiavell.
Taught his disciples closely to pretend;
Using faire glozes as most subtil baits,
Thereby t’entrap their true-plaine-meaning Friend.
Such Juggling tricks blear’d most mens eyes at first;
Now, better knowne to all, th’ave done their worst.
Peace, thus; My Lord, welcome with all my heart, (K. Richard 3.
Spake Tyrant Richard to that gentle Child, By Sr. Th. More.
For whom he had prepar’d a deadly dart,
Shaddowing rancour with a count’nance mild.
This man might well have Mach’vels master bin:
“Greater the person, greater is the sin.
Peace, that great Rich man (boasting of his wealth, (The great Rich
And taking pride of his abundant store) (Luk. 12.
Thought himselfe sure of, being in good health,
And furnish’t for some doozen yeeres, or more.
Eate, drinke (sayes he) take rest, and live at ease:
He thought he did injoy a happy Peace.
Peace Atheists, Worldlings, loosest Libertines, (Atheists, &c.
That live in bestiall sensuality,
Faine to themselves, and promise to bad hynes,
So drawing them to grosse security.
Such Peace, destruction sudden soone drawes on,
And leades them headlong to perdition.
These all are bad seeds, keep them from your ground,
The rankest weeds doe not so much offend:
Their semblance makes them harder to be found,
Weeds may be sooner nypt, as sooner kend.
They take the name of Peace b’equivocation,
Yet worse then warre, by due examination.
The world doth oft her darlings deere deceave
With such false peace: Christ did expresse it plaine;
When Peace to his Disciples he did leave,
And putting difference, said to them againe, (Christs Peace not as
Not as the world gives, So give I to you; the worlds.
For that gives false peace, I bestow the true. Joh. 14. 27.
Strive for this Peace, it is a precious Jewell:
(Fondlings, worldlings, hunting after muck,
Of discord, warre, and bloodshed chiefest fewell)
Get it by purchase, or by lawfull trucke.
Both Indies yeeld you not so rich a treasure:
Why scorne ye t’one, seeke t’other out of measure?
Soule-slaying peace worlds children fondly seeke, (Peace of this world,
Such as with God sets them at enmity: enmity with God.
They dare not with their hand at vice to strike, (Jam. 4. 4.
But yeeld themselves to it’s base slavery.
Christ comming brought a sword, and his must fight
Against such foes, with courage and with might.
As did his servants in the Churches prime,
Against old Tyrants that withstood his Word:
With Patience, Meeknesse, Weapons meere divine,
With spirituall Armour, and with spirituall sword.
They wan more by their patient suffering,
Then others doe by bloody bickering.
Thus having winnowed with the wind, or fan,
Good seed from bad, and sowne that to your mind:
Next duty of a carefull husbandman,
Is to plucke up the weeds of every kinde. (Weeds in the field of Peace.
I’le poynt at them: they be but few in number,
The growth of Peace, yet greatly they do cumber.
Of differences in Divinity,
Choking the fruit of Peace in Christes field:
My Muse with naked ingenuity,
And faire intent, hath spoke as she was skil’d.
She must touch gently some professing Law,
Who in the shield of Peace doe make a flaw.
Peace is not onely broke by shedding blood, ( Peace broken by
(Though thereby most) but by unchristian striving: striving and
Contending, brabbling, lawing, are not good, rrabbling.
All such as use it, seldome see I thriving.
"In troubled waters some men find best angling,
"That makes them pleas’d to see their neighbours wrangling.
A poore man seised of a little Land,
And having had neere forty yeeres possession: (Wrangling at Law.
Fees an Atturney dwelling nigh at hand,
As one thought cunning in his owne profession;
And shewes his Deed, for some cause to be tryed,
His Feed-man errour in the writing spyed.
To th’other side he goes, and takes a fee:
(Somtimes, though seld’, such tricks have been discover’d)
And saies, Sir, if ye will be rul’d by me,
The Land for you ere long shall be recover’d.
He gives not over till the seely lowt,
Wrapt in the briers, knowes not how come out.
With Ejectione firmè he begins,
Therein he tugs at least one yeere and halfe:
Then non sint falu', a Writ of Right he brings,
There two or three yeeres longer leades the Calfe
And failing therein, for his last dead lift,
Perswades him strongly to this cunning shift.
I doubt not but I’le force him to compound,
So you will onely follow my direction:
Or else Ile make him spend five hundred pound,
And never draw you to the Size nor Session.
Give me the chinkes, and you shall see him tamer;
I’le frame ’gainst him a Bill in the Star-chamber.
It shall containe matter of Perjurie,
And thereto will we put in Subornation:
I’le not forget charge him with forgerie,
It would doe well to lay downe combination.
This Bill will cause him yeeld you halfe the land,
Or else I care not if I lose this hand.
Some such professe the Law (rather hang on)
Who raise their fortunes by the fall of others:
They hold their Clyents in their causes long,
All’s one to them, if ’twere betweene two brothers.
These be the skum of that grave learned Calling,
Which doth uphold each civill State from falling.
What Kingdom or what Common-wealth stood ever, (The Law
Not propped with the pillar of the Law? commended.
Which doth protect each man, how high soever,
Which keepes seditious Rebels under awe,
Which gives to every faithfull Subject right,
Which sees poore men be not opprest by might.
That State (some say) stands in a wofull case,
Where Lawyers and Physicians doe abound.
The Law and Physicke hold a reverend place,
And in best Kingdomes alwayes have been found
Professors of those Sciences, whose skill
Hath done their Countrey good, and ever will.
Yet, where there needeth neither Law nor Physicke,
More happy are that people, and more blest.
Wher’s that? Forsooth where men are never sicke; Utopia.
Where each one holds his owne, and lives at rest:
Where no man offers wrong, all keepe good diet,
No surfetting, no violence, no riot.
“Peace, and the Law, goe hand in hand as twins,
“Each interchangeably upholds her fellow:
“In peacefull times the Law most credit wins:
“So while Lawes flourish, peace growes ripe & mellow.
“A meane is good in both: I learn’d a lesson,
“One may have too much of his mothers blessing.
Though Paul rebuked sharpely in his time, (1. Cor. 6.
The faithfull lawing ’fore an Heathen Judge:
It seemes a matter wholly voyd of crime,
And whereat best Divines should never grudge;
A man by Law in peacefull wise to keepe,
What lawlesly others would from him sweepe.
The Magistrate is placed to that end,
By sword, or lawfull sentence (as it haps)
To curbe wrong-doers, Innocents defend,
As mothers doe their children in their laps,
Else Justicers, and Judges might sit still,
And suffer wrangling fellowes have their will.
Sure, wrongs we ought to suffer, none to offer,
Yea give our cloake to him that takes the coat: (Math. 5.
This is no doctrine for an Atheist scoffer,
Hee’l sooner take a pound, then give a groat.
Such high perfections Evangelicall,
Few can aspire to, none attaine at all.
One weed yet stands, and needs must be cut downe, (The worst weed
It is a Cutter in it’s proper kind: in the field of Peace.
Fighting and stabbing, knocking on the crowne,
We may not leave this weed untouch’t behind.
Too oft by these is Peace directly broke,
For Peace by no meanes can indure a stroke.
Man was not fram’d to fighting by his nature, (Man framed to Peace.
But borne without offensive weapons any:
So is it not with every other creature,
For they are furnish’t, if not all, yet many.
Some hornes, some hoofes, some cruell teeth, some pawes,
Som have their stings, & som their griping clawes.
Man after Gods owne Image was created, (Gen. 1.
That Image who presumeth to deface,
Of God and men he doth incurre the hatred,
And vengeance lights on him, or on his race.
“He that the blood of man doth shed, saith God, (Gen. 9.
“By man the blood of him shall eft be shod. (Blood for Blood.
The rule is peremptory, strict and strong,
The Judge that gave it, not to be intreated:
His Under-officers must do no wrong,
Such is his wisedome, he cannot be cheated.
“All thing are open to his piercing sight,
“The darke to him as cleere is as the light.
Yet that high Judge kept some reserved cases (Cases reserved.
Unto himselfe, wherein he might dispence:
He may, and doth in certaine times and places,
Or pardon, or reprieve for this offence.
The Law is subject to the Makers will,
That may be proved even by reasons skill.
Examples cleere the best. Assoone as Cain Cain.
His brother slue, seeking the fact to hide, Gen. 4.
(It would not be, his shift therein was vaine,
The blood from-out the earth for vengeance cry’d)
His conscience told him he deserv’d to dye,
And fearing all he saw, began to flye.
Ere Moses wrote, the Law was just the same.
God wrote it in the heart of man at first.
Else had not Cain incurred so great blame,
Nor for his fact had been so much accurst.
But since he knew the Law graven in his hart,
The sinne he could not hide with any art.
He feared death, and certainly he knew,
(For all the shifts and cunning he could use)
That punishment unto his sinne was due,
To God he so confest, he could not chuse.
Yet God was pleas’d to set on him a marke,
And spare his life: as our Law doth a clarke.
That reades his neck-verse. Burning in the hand
Acquits his life, the Law hath so decreed:
Such burning is to him a marke or brand:
The necke is spared, if the tongue can reed.
Somtimes of punishments ther’s commutation,
Sometimes reprivall, or procrastination.
When David was reprov’d for Uryes death, David.
And humbly did confesse his grievous sinne:
The Prophet comforts him, and kindly saith, (2. Sam. 12. 13.
Thou shalt not dye. Implying plaine therein,
That death was due: yet God to him was milde,
And sparing David, onely tooke the child.
As God himselfe, sometimes his deputies
Upon occasions great, to them well knowne,
May (sparingly) use their prerogatives,
Not suffring Lawes full rigour to be showne.
They may commute, deferre, or pardon quite,
And leave to God, wherein they misse, to right.
Provided that the Law be never wrested,
Nor due proceedings stopt by might or meed:
For, such injustice is of God detested,
As in his Word we commonly doe reed.
“Kings may not legall courses change at pleasure,
“But when Law hath run on, dispence with measure.
Joah two hainous murthers did commit, (Joah.
For each of them he well deserv’d to dye:
King David for a time did winke at it,
And let him live: (Onely the King knew why)
Yet lastly charged Salomon his sonne, (1. King. 2.
To slay him for those murthers long since done.
Man-quellers then by rule of Law must dye,
Blood cryes for blood, as Abels did long since:
Hand for hand, foot for foot, and eye for eye, Exod. 21.
This is Gods Law, he onely can dispence;
And they to whom his power he doth impart.
But take ye heed, for God doth know the hart.
A beast that kils a man, must dye the death, (A beast that
Though reasonlesse, and meerly led by sense: kills a man.
It may no longer live, nor draw the breath, (Exod. 21.
But life for life must be the recompence.
Learne thou how much God doth this sin detest,
Revenging it even in (no sinning) beast.
Nay, he who kept a beast which us’d to gore,
If it did after, chance a man to kill:
The owner knowing of that use before,
Must answere for the blood his beast did spill.
The flesh of such an Oxe might not be eaten,
Death to them both, the Law of God doth threaten.
To slay a man in sudden passions heat, ( Man slaughter
And not upon fore-thought deliberation: is bestiall.
Is not unlike the fury of bruit Neat,
And yet deserveth greater castigation.
The man had reason passion to amend;
The beast not having it, doth lesse offend.
The poorest slave that grindeth at the Mill,
Or toyleth in the most abject condition:
The greatest hath not warrant him to kill,
Nor may he doe it without Gods commission,
His substitutes can doe it in his roome,
All men are bound be subject to their doome.
We ought not strike, much lesse blood may we spill,
Strokes breake the peace, by law of Christian land;
For he that striketh, oftentimes doth kill,
And for that striking must hold up his hand.
Yea, though twelve men say, non cul, there doth lie
Appeale of murther in a Court more hie.
Where needs no Jury, nor no evidence,
The Judge the matter fully understands:
The witnesse are th’offenders conscience,
The Gailor prest to doe his office stands.
No priviledge of Booke, nought but just guerdon,
Save only heavens Kings most gracious pardon.
That’s seldome had for murther, divelish crime: (Murther
Yet by mediation of Gods onely Sonne, is Diabolicall.
If one with true repentance turne by time,
And not despaire, Gods favour may be wonne.
“His Justice and his mercy stretch more farre,
“Then lowest center from the highest starre.
O hate-bred murther, deepest damned sinne, (Murther described.
“Proceeding from the devils Instigation!
“God’s not before their eyes when they begin,
“But malice worketh by premeditation.
The wicked Fiend delighteth most in this,
The Actors of it commonly are his.
For some man-slayers God assign’d a place (Sanctuary.
Of refuge, and to be a Sanctuary; (Deut. 19.
That flying thither, there they might finde grace,
And learn thenceforth to beare theselves more wary.
“The Altar was no fence for wilfull murther, (1. King. 2.
“A man might kill him there, and goe no further.
What may be thought of such as teach the way, (Kill. Kings detested.
To murther those whom Scripture calleth Gods? (Psal. 82.
Yea Subiects, bound their Soveraignes to obey,
And with all meekenesse to endure their rods?
To write downe what I thinke, I lacke a letter:
Devils, though not; I hold them little better.
If heathen people should such lessons teach,
’Twere no great marvell, unto Christen men:
They know not God, nor have they higher reach
Then by the light of nature they can ken:
And yet to Nations lawes it’s cleane contrary,
And from the course of nature it doth vary.
But when I thinke of Christ, and of that Name,
So glorious, where, when, and how began:
I cannot choose but turne my head for shame,
And blush to thinke there should be found a man
Of that high calling, and most blest profession,
Would let such thought take in his hart possession.
David, of Israel, that most holy King, (Davids reward to him
Whom Saul pursued with a deadly hate: that killed Saul.
Rewarded him that did the tydings bring, 3. Sam. 1.
And brag’d that he had slaine King Saul but late.
If kill-Kings all were sure to have like hire,
They would not to such wicked deeds aspire.
But they are taught it is a worke of merit,
And rest on hope (escaping) to be graced:
Yea, that at least heavens Kingdome they inherit,
And on the bead-roll of great Saints be laced.
Monsters of men! If these in heaven dwell,
Who then (i’the devils name) shall furnish hell!
Well, God amend them, worse they cannot be,
Some sorts besides of these same weeds remaine,
The Husband-man must looke about and see,
And by all meanes remoove them from the graine.
The growth of Peace, I wish no weed should marre,
No not so much as strife, debate, or jarre.
A man unto himselfe is ever neerest, ( Manslaughter,
His neighbour ought to be esteemed next: se defendendo.
Ones owne life God hath made to each man dearest,
I trow this Glosse doth not corrupt the Text.
“To save himselfe, he that another slayes,
“Ought not therefore be shortned of his dayes.
So he that minds a man none ill at all, (Chance, or Misadventure.
But shoots a shaft, or carelesse throwes a stone;
If on his neighbours pate it hap to fall,
And take the life, where purpose such was none.
To these mishaps a Pardon freely given,
I thinke, doth not displease the King of heaven.
But what of him that on himselfe layes hands, (Of such as kill
And cursed wretch, cuts oft his loathed life? themelves
How hopelesse he before Gods Judgement stands;
The case is cleere, and need not come in strife.
“We ought judge no man in particular;
“Yet judging such, a man doth seldome erre.
The heathen people tooke it for a glory ( A common practice
To kill themselves, once brought into a straite: with the heathen.
So may we reade in every ancient Story,
Their foe-mens sword they seldome would awaite;
As fearing torture, shame, or slavery;
They chose themselves to end their misery.
True, were it not for breach of Law Divine,
And feare of damning never-dying soule:
He that would such a speedie death decline,
Deserved to be marked with a cole.
One stab or draught, to end a thousand woes,
Were better then be tyranniz’d by foes.
But Lawes of heaven doe forbid that fact, Forbid by Gods Word.
As God hath taught us in his holy Word:
“In heavens high Parliament there past an Act,
“Decreed by all with uniforme accord:
“That he which on himselfe did violence,
“Should be exiled evermore from thence.
The Lawes of Medes and Persians might not change, (Dan. 6.
They stood so strict upon their governments:
But farre lesse liberty men have to range
From Lawes Divine; And greater punishments
For breach of these, then those provided are:
As God all earthly Princes passeth farre.
I heare some Jolly fellow make a motion; ( Prevention of cavil,
You Scholler, Sir, pray answere me a word: by Swaggerers, Combatants,
Since you so much doe leane upon devotion, Duellists.
Tell me, Is’t lawfull that I weare a sword?
Your pen to you, is as to me my pike;
As well as you may scribble, may n’t I strike?
I’le not be led into fooles Paradise,
Nor bind my selfe to bookish Propositions:
I scorne to follow your Precepts so nice,
I care not for your subtill oppositions:
If I be wrong’d, mine honour stands upon’t,
I’le be revenged, though my life lie on’t.
Whoso my reputation dares once touch,
Or offer me the stab-deserving lie:
I’le fight, and make him with my sword to crouch,
I’le kill him, were I sure for it to die.
If like a man hee’l meete, and with me fight,
I’le seek nought but my sword, my wrongs to right.
This hath bin long the practice of our age,
And these men valiant, vulgarly were thought:
Who egged on by choller, or by rage,
Their owne revenges by their sword have sought
A course adverse to Lawes of God and man,
It’s cleere to him that will the matter scan.
I list not stand to make a declamation,
Or largely to dilate upon this case:
Nor answere every wranglers allegation,
Gods Word shall only checke them to their face.
If that will not suffice, I must forbeare,
And with meere pittie, leave them as they were.
The Magistrate, as in Gods seate doth sit, ( Vengeance belongeth to God
He takes revenge from-out all private hands: and his Magistrates.
He with the sword must strike, when it is fit, Rom. 12.
And take the life, as well as goods or lands.
Vengeance is mine, saith God, I will repay:
As he, his lawfull Deputies so may.
And so they must, else they shall beare the blame,
Blood spilt will be required at their hand:
It’s plainely written (oft I reade the same)
“There is no way from blood to purge the land,
“But only by the Blood of Him that shead, (Num. 35.33.
“It’s He must make atonement with his Head.
If head and heart would fully cleere the score,
And leave no after-reckonings in the Booke,
The matter were the lesse: But there is more,
The slayer to an higher Court must looke:
His soule must run the hazzard of her doome:
A Pardon serves not from the Sea of Rome.
“A man should looke before he rashly leape,
“And cast the danger of foole-hardinesse:
“For as he sowes, he must account to reape,
“Repentance comes too late to yeeld redresse.
In quarrels he that hath another slaine,
Would lose a lim to make him live againe.
Many such haue I knowen in my dayes, (Combates for trifles.
( Who for some trifle, falling out at Tables;
Or for some word, or oversight, at plaies
With Cardes or Dice, or such like childish brables,
Have fought, and left both bodies in the place,
Their soules departing in a wofull case.
This to prevent, to higher powers pertaines, (Magistrates Office.
It’s not enough to punish such faults done;
A carefull Pilot wisely beates his braines, A simile.
How he the shelves and Rockes’ forehand may shun.
“’Tis better so, then touch, and spring a planke,
“And then with skill to make the Vessell stanke.
Great Pilot of Great Brittaines floting Ile, (To the King.
Worthy to steere the Arke, wherein mankinde
Is carried wandring in his long exile,
Untill the wished Haven he can finde:
Heerein thy wisedome, as in other things,
Shewes thou exceedest former-living Kings.
Thou hast not only stopped all the Leakes,
And calk’t the gaping joynts of thy great Hulke;
But so forecast, that she no longer breakes,
Abiding stanch in hatches and in bulke.
Long guide this Ship, & teach thy Princely Son,
To rule hereafter as thou hast begun.
I well remember numbers slaine by duell
Within this Land, before thy wise prevention:
One Combate, of another was the fewell,
Now (happy change!) I seldome heare such mention.
Blessing light on his head, by whose good meane,
That Caine-like custome is abolish’t cleane.
Somewhat forespoke, a caution doth admit, (A caution.
I must explane, for feare I be mistaken:
I meane not that a man should sottish sit,
And never moove, till he be all to shaken.
Ther’s time and place wherein I wish to fight
With courage bold, as best beseemes a Knight.
In Countries cause, and Soveraignes defence, ( When, and in what
Led to the warre by good authority: quarrell one may fight.
For dastard minds, there lurketh no pretence;
We must be stout, resolv’d to kill or die.
The Souldiers calling, John did not repre’nd, (Luk. 3. 14.
But taught them lessons how their faults to mend.
That shamelesse Towne-clerke, the devils Pen-man, (Machiavell no
Amongst his maximes teaching knavery; Christian.
Hath one, wherein he labours what he can, Max. 3.
And sets it out with heath’nish bravery:
That Christian faith doth take from men their spright,
And makes them cowards, all unapt to fight.
Hush, foule-mouth’d Florentine, and blush for shame,
The lye is given thee in thy Ravens throate;
A cudgell wanted such a Curre to tame,
I thinke he was a Turke when this he wrote.
Nay, Turks have felt the waight of Christian swords,
And have just cause to give them better words.
Christs Doctrine, teaching Peace, Humilitie, ( Humility, no let to
Love, Softnesse, Meekenesse, workes fit for a Saint: Magnanimity.
Doth no way hinder Magnanimitie,
Nor in the battell gives us cause to faint;
“He fights more bold that hath God on his side:
“God stands with meekenesse, but withstandeth pride. (Jam. 4
Pride is a vice, link’t to an unbeleever, (Pride, the vice
What’s due to God, unto himselfe he claimes: of Infidels.
He lookes not up to him that is the giver,
But at his owne selfe-soothing glory aimes.
“Christs Souldier sets Gods glory for his marke,
“Then his owne vertue cannot bide in darke.
Ye noble Champions of the Christian faith, ( To Christian
Prest with your hearts and hands it to maintaine: Champions.
Marke what this idle prating fellow saith,
And by your deeds, proove his words to be vaine.
And so I doubt not, ’twill appeare at last,
As hath beene fully prov’d in ages past.
Were Constantine the Great, or Charlemaine, (Constantine.
Stout Christian Chieftaines, tainted with the crime (Charlemayne.
Of Cowardize? Or he that once did raigne (K. Richard I.
In this faire Ile, surnamed in his time,
Coeur de Lyon, Jerusalems crown’d King,
Whose praises lowd o’re all the world doe ring?
Godfrey of Boleyn with his warlike traine, (Godfrey of Boleyne.
Robert of Normandy, and such like Knights: (Robert Short-thigh.
Who Pagans fury strongly did restraine,
And beat them downe continually in fights?
Could they and theirs with cowardize be stayn’d,
Who with lesse numbers, on the greater gain’d?
Of later Worthies I have writ afore,
I feare t’offend with idle repetition:
In this cleere cause, I need to say no more,
All wise men know that Slanderers condition.
From him some Christians sucking poysoned arts,
In all our Tragedies have play’d their parts.
What? Cowardize with Christianity:
I never heard it coupled but by him:
He was a teacher of all villany,
His Prince with such faire Jewels he doth trim?
His scholers (like the master) still infect,
The Christian world with their damned sect.
’Mongst Christian Knights, I find in Heraldry, ( A Christian
They are obliged not to turne their face Knight sworne
From Pagans, if they have but one for three. not to fle
And may not this give credit to our case, from three Turks.
That Christian Knights abhor the shamefull blot,
Falsly cast on them by that mongrell sot?
No, no, ’tis neither cowardize in us,
Nor courage in the unbeleeving crue
That beats us downe, makes them presumptuous:
I told you oft, and all men finde it true,
Our discord lifts them up, and keepes us low. (Our discord
Who sees not that which every child may know? lifteth up the Turks.
“A ioyfull thing ’tis brethren to agree; (Psal. 133.
“Like Hermons dew, drop’t downe on Sion Hill:
“All blessings follow gracious unity;
“The house of Peace with plenties God doth fill.
“A Realme divided in it selfe must fall, (Math. 12. 25.
“Were it inviron’d with a brazen wall.
Why then should Christians fight against their fellowes, Exhortation
And with fell hatred one consume the other? to Christian unity.
What fury puffes up those who are the bellowes
That blow the coles, to burn the church their mother
They’l say (forsooth) ’tis zeale vnto our Saviour.
I never read he taught them such behaviour.
Lend not your eares (great Princes) to those teachers, (To Christian
Their doctrine swarves from Christianity: Princes.
Th’enemie of mankind sends forth such Preachers,
To breake all bands of meere humanity.
These, masking fury with the cloke of zeale,
Disturbe the Church, & spoyle the Comon-weale
Christs Doctrine is all Peace; they make debate.
He wil’d us to forgive: Revenge, say these.
He charg’d us love our foes: These bid us hate,
Spoyle, rob, and kill, and say it doth him please.
They sow the tares of discord ’mongst Christs Seed:
O cleanse your lands from such a lothsome weed.
Foule discord, ruine of each Empire great: Discord.
(The Romane great’st of all doth serve for proofe)
Foule discord, downfall of each kingly seat:
(I need not seeke examples farre aloofe.)
Foule discord, canker of each civill State,
Experience teacheth when it is too late.
Concord the bond of Peace, none tyes so fast: (Concord.
Concord the badge of brothers, livery faire:
Concord the fruit of love, which aye doth last:
Concord Gods blessing, making heavens haire.
Compare the both, then chuse which likes you best;
The first, or last: the cursed, or the blest
Now fairely ’gins the field of Peace to flourish, (The Authour,
Weeds all cleane rooted up that did offend: by contemplation takes a
Now fertile soyle, the seed doth solely nourish, survey of the heavenly
And Peace in every bud and branch doth mend. Jerusalem.
I long to see it as described heere,
I would be glad it might be so this yeere.
My soule is all inflam’d with chast desire,
Of this faire Virgin Peace, in full perfection:
It makes her to an higher place aspire,
To view her neerly, not by bare reflection.
Shee’l slip out of her prison for a while,
She knowes a way the Keeper to beguile.
My thoughts now lift me farre above earths station,
And lend me Eagles wings to mount on high:
Conveyes me up beyond the azure skye.
There doe I with my nobler part behold,
Things fitter to be thought on, then be told.
Tell them I must, yet onely to the best,
They are acquainted with like thoughts divine,
Vulgars of such hid mysteries make a jest,
And so it’s like they will esteeme of mine.
Take each one as he list, or as he may,
I will not stick, what I shall see, to say.
I see Jerusalem, new City, holy,
The seat of God, and of the Lambe his Sonne:
Mother of faithfull, Saints there dwelling solely,
Shining farre brighter then the cleerest Sunne.
Angels in number numberlesse still flying,
The service of great heavens King applying.
Father of all mankind, without a father,
The eldest Sonne of God, so by creation, (Luk. 3. 38.
Adam, and Abel, who came there the rather, (Adam.
Through Cains accursed murdrous indignation. (Abel.
Th’one, first that liv’d; the other first that dyed;
Both living there, and joying I espyed.
Henoch, the same who in his time is said (Henoch.
T’have walk’t with God, and pleased him aright: Gen. 5.
Methuselah his sonne, that longest stay’d (Methuselah.
A pilgrim on this Globe, stood in my sight.
And Noah, who through faith that great Arke builded, (Noah.
Where man and beast, fro drowning all were shielded. (Heb. 11.
Father of faithfull, Abraham, Gods friend, (Abraham.
That tendred him his sonne in sacrifice: Gen. 22.
With all the holy Patriarks I kend, (Patriarks.
Sitting on stately seats in glorious wise.
Grac’t with the favour of the power Divine,
The sight would dazell sharpest mortall eyne.
And so did mine. But soone I felt a change,
The priviledge of that place affoorded strength:
Then greedily mine eyes about ’gan range,
Till bent upon a settled course at length,
They fixed stood on that magnifike traine,
Where they began reflecting there againe.
Moses sate next, that mighty man of God: (Moses.
Then Aaron in his Priestly vestments dight, (Aaron.
With Urim, Thummim, and his famous Rod,
Which Pharo and his folke did often fright.
These two sate somewhat sever’d from the rest;
That, as he rul’d: This, ev’n as if he blest.
A ranke of Prophets followed on a row, (Prophets.
With Kings and Princes all of elder Law:
David was first: The next I did not know, (David.
To aske his name (forsooth) I stood in awe.
He look’t like Salomon, yet I durst not sweare, (Salomon.
To erre upon my oath, I stand in feare.
Among the Prophets upmost in the ranke,
A Crowne of gold hung, set with precious stone:
None in that Seat sate, onely ’twas a blanke
Ordained for a King, but I saw none.
For Saul I thinke, sith Samuel looked sad, (1 Sam. 15. 35.
As oft as to that Seat an eye he had.
It seem’d to me that Samuel once did start, (Samuel.
As though somewhat affrighted he had been.
’Twas my mistake; for certes all the art (1. Sam. 28.
Of Endors Witch could doe no scath to him.
At first I thought him troubled with her charme,
But I did erre, and he did feele no harme.
Of Prophets more a double rank did sit,
All had been Pen-men of the sacred Booke:
Twelve (I perceiv’d) some little volumes writ, (The 12 lesser Prophets.
I did not long upon their writings looke.
Yet read there, blessings to such as doe well;
And to the wicked, threats of plagues in hell.
Foure others somewhat higher sate before, (The 4 greater Prophets.
Messias plainely they describe at full:
The Jewes they threaten with Gods vengeance sore,
And teach the Gentiles (then a people dull)
That they at length shall come into Gods favour,
And knowledge the Messias for their Saviour.
I joy’d at sight of lovely Daniel, (Daniel.
That in expounding dreames did once excell,
That stopt the Lyons mouthes, as with a spell,
That kil’d the Dragon, and confounded Bell,
That of the Monarchies did things foretell,
And as he spake, so it to them befell.
Like as on earth with Kings he had beene great,
So here in heaven a crowned King (me thought)
Attending him where e’re he went, did waite;
Who thither by his guiding had beene brought.
A Lady chaste likewise, whose innocence (Susanna.
He cleered from false Judges foule pretence.
Two Prophets more, like man and Master walked, (Elias.
A mantle of great worth the Master wore: (Elizeus.
A firie Chariot parts them as they talked,
Resembling what once hapned them before. (2. King. 2.
In works of wonder none came neere these twaine,
Just as it’s written, heere I saw all plaine.
A brace of noble Warriours shined bright, (Joshua. .
Among the Hebrew-Worthies rightly placed; (Judas Maccabeus.
With Shields and Armours they seem’d richly dight,
That glorious Court, their presence greatly graced.
Th’one set Gods people in the Holy Land:
Th’other, long after, fenc’t them with strong hand.
Ten thousand times ten thousand, ten times told,
And millions more there stood, and sate together;
These all I knew were of the Hebrewes old,
Or such as led by them, had got up thither.
But when I cast mine eyes another way,
Halfe what I saw, I am not able say.
All Kings on earth should they agree in one, (A comparison, describing
To make a Court in shew majesticall: the new Jerusalem.
From Indies East and West if each rich stone,
Polish’t by skill most artificiall,
Were got and set to furnish up one roome,
’Twere but a lodging for a simple groome,
Compared with Gods high Imperiall Chamber,
Still grac’t with presence of the Deity,
When Rubies, Diamonds, Silver, Gold, and Amber,
Are base materials for Eternity.
Onely to fit our weake capacity,
It must be shadowed by Analogie.
The walles and streets are Pearle and precious stone,
The waters Nectar, trees with fruit still stor’d:
The Sun nor Moone in that place never shone, (Rev. 22. 5.
Those lights are dim’d with brightnes of their Lord,
A candle at high noone gives farre more light, (Another comparison.
Then cleerest Sun in this great Monarchs sight.
I kneeling, humbly praid to that great King, (The Authors
Whose traine is Angell-like Nobility: Prayer.
Pardon (dread Lord) that I presume to sing
Of thy high Court, with rusticke melody:
One drop of heavenly Nectar please thee give
My fainting spirit, somewhat to relieve.
I felt new vigour, therewithall proceed,
And make description of another hoste:
Their number man nor Angell can areed, (Revel. 7.
They are of every Nation tongue, and coste
From under heaven, making up one fold
Of Sheep and Lambs, joynd with that flock of old.
The Shepheard chiefe a Lambe slaine and alive, (Revel. 5.
Did leade and guide this flocke by power divine:
They walked gently as he did them drive,
All teares he wiped from their tender eyne. (Revel. 7.
Of Woolfe or hireling there no feare they had,
The Shepherds presence ever made them glad
For he is Sonne and heire unto the King,
And King himselfe as is his heavenly Father:
A person third there is, yet all one thing,
One Divine Essence, I should terme it rather.
These all in one, and one in all agree,
The flocke to him and them obedient be.
Mother of God, faire Virgin, she shone cleerest, (The blessed Virgin.
Among that blessed glorious heavenly crue:
For to her Sonne I alway saw her neerest,
And from his Person greater splendor drew.
Blest above women, 'cause she God-man bore,
Yet by beleeving in him, blessed more. (Luk. 11. 28.
One of a comely presence I might see, (S. John Baptist.
Walke here and there, as to him seemed best:
I boldly ask’t an Angell, What is he,
That keepes alone divided from the rest?
He seemes to be a Saint of speciall note,
Me thinks I might have knowne him by his cote. (Math 3. 4
The Harbinger of the Messias hight, (Mat. 3. 1.
Of wondrous birth, in life all sanctitie;
Elias, not in person, but in spright, (Luk 1. 17.
’Mong womens children none more great then he: (Mat. 11. 11.
For Gods deare Sonne, the way he did prepare,
And of his God-head cleerest witnesse bare. (Joh. 1. 29.
Apostles twelve the second place supplied, (Apostles.
For they most soules unto that Kingdome brought:
Peter and Paul, the foremost I espied,
And yet that blessed Virgin, as I thought,
Next to her person us’d to have another, (S. John.
Who by the Crosse had tane her for his mother. (Ioh 19. 26.
Foure others ranged sate like beasts in show, (Evangelists.
All full of eyes, sharpe-sighted to descry: (Revel. 6.
Gods praises still they sounded on a rowe,
Winged they were, prepared for to flie.
These truly writ the Story of Christs Birth,
His Life, his Death, his Actions on the Earth
Martyrs succeeded, marching Souldier-like, (Martyrs.
Such valiant Legions never were led forth,
By any Chieftaine, Barbarous or Greeke,
Nor ever any shewed halfe that worth:
Through patience, all their foes they overcame,
And freely gave their lives for Jesus Name.
With Angell-face, the foremost of them all ( S. Stephen,
Shone, as unto the Jewes he seem’d of yore, Protomartyr.
Set in the Councell, when that yong man Saul, Act. 6. 15.
The rayment kept of them that falsly swore.
Now Paul and he live Martyrs both together,
The first the higher, though come later thither.
Of all the heavenly troopes, these triumphs most,
And have the stile of the Victorious Band:
The victory their dearest hearts blood cost,
Now beare they palmes in their triumphant hand.
The seed of Christ his Church their blood became,
More glorious therefore is become their name.
One regiment of these (sweet company) (The holy Innocents.
I saw lie neere the Altar of their Lord: Revel. 6. 9.
Slaine by false Herods gracelesse tyrannie,
They never cease to cry with one accord,
Vengeance (good Lord) returne upon the head
Of those, who care not guiltlesse blood to shead.
If Tyrants in the world did heare that cry,
Or credit give to those that tell them troath:
I thinke (so they hold Christianity)
To spill blood innocent they would be loath.
Remember well that you shall once appeare,
To answere for such deeds as ye doe heare.
Among that noble Martyr-Army, one
Above the rest, I wished to behold: (S. Donatus
Him, looking well about I spi’d anon, ( B. and M.
And pressing neerer to him, I was bold
To tender homage for the slender fee,
Which under him I hold by Chivalrie
There stood one by himselfe, well to be noted; ( The Thiefe.
A Thiefe he had been, hanged for his crime: Luk. 23. 39.
Yet, ’cause when all the world (almost) doted,
His faith was firme in that perfidious time:
The worlds Saviour freed him in a trice,
And brought him forthwith up to Paradise.
Not one Saint grudg’d to see him thither rais’d
From wretched state, and ready bound for hell:
Nay, all the goodnesse of their Saviour prais’d,
For quitting his short-strong beliefe so well.
He in the Vineyard wrought scarce halfe an houre,
And rests for ever in heavens glorious Bowre.
This one example shewes two lessons cleere, (No man may despaire.
That no man ever should despaire of grace;
If he have sure faith in his Saviour deare,
And turne, whil’st for repentance there is space.
“Ev’n with the first the last come hath his hire; ( Mat. 20.
“God freely gives his owne, if wee desire.
Yet may we not presume on this mans case, (No man may presume.
Nor post off our amendment to the last:
For none is certaine he shall have like grace,
Then, to repentance best it were make haste.
“Better late then never, too late is never;
“Foole-virgins come too late, were kept out ever. (Mat. 25.
Of blessed Saints, besides in each degree,
Kings, Princes, Prelates, Lay and Learned men,
The number came neere to infinitie:
They may be yet as many moe agen
E’re day of doome. (Then judge ye what a Court
Of state is this, where wonneth such resort!)
Heere saw I roomes and seates in order placed,
For other Saints ascending daily thither:
Peace-makers, ’mongst them all were chiefly graced, (Peace-makers.
Peace-haters, none I could percive come thither:
Those are Gods Childre: whose the be these others?
Satans sonnes (I feare) must call them brothers.
Yet have I left the chiefest traine untold, ( Angels.
Of this great Kings Attendants, Angels bright:
In number farre surmounting new and old
Of earth-bred Saints, and ten times more of might.
They alwayes prest to doe their Makers will,
And his commands most readily fulfill.
Whether it be, his servants to protect Their Office.
From Tyrants raging fury: Or to strike
Such wicked worldlings as he doth reject,
Which never cease against his Lawes to kicke:
Or to correct unto amendement,
His Chosen, when he leads them to repent.
The order of this Court is ineffable, (Their degrees
Degrees of dignities I well did note, and orders ineffable.
Which rightly to distinguish I’me not able,
Nor no man else, but if he speake by rote.
Yet some, who never have beene in the place, (The curiositie
Seeme to tell all, and not to bate an ace. of some, taxed.
I only doe in some sort here describe,
Some orders and degrees, as I did note them:
Yet I confesse there's no man need be tide
To this my bead-roll, well I could not quote them.
As much as I could marke, and beare away,
That I am bold (blamelesse I hope) to say.
Some starres in brightnesse others doe excell, (1. Cor. 15.
So is it with this holy Company:
They are not shuffled up, as ’twere pell-mell,
Their government endures no Anarchie.
As to their joyes, they all have what they will:
The pinte, as well as Pottle-pot, is full. (Psal. 23.
Nor can I solve you of another doubt, (An idle question
Whereof I often heard Doctors dispute: unsolved.
If each know other in that heavenly rout,
For feare to erre, I rather will be mute.
They know as much as breeds their perfect blisse,
Of further knowledge there no reckoning is.
The language of these blessed Citizens, (Another idle
(I well remember when I us’d the Schooles) question taxed
Great Clerks were bold to scribble with their pens,
But for their labour, most account them fooles.
I say not so, I owe them more respect;
And yet herein, I am not of their sect.
Of this I’me sure: Each other understands,
I heard no diffrence in pronuntiation:
The King no sooner by a becke commands,
But they perceive as ’twere by Proclamation.
He that taught men al tongues with one breath t’utter, (Act. 2.
Can doe as much, though lips doe never mutter.
I feare lest I have erred in this place,
In touching questions curious, forbode (1. Tim. 6. 20.
By Gentiles great Apostle: I beg grace, (2. Tim. 2. 23.
And am content, for meddling, to be chode:
Yet sith in nothing rashly I define,
I hope thereby sharpe censures to decline.
To heare the sweet soule-pleasing harmony, (All worldly delights base,
Of all sorts singing in this heavenly Quire: in comparison of heavenly.
Would drive a mortall into extasie,
And make him cleane abandon base desire
Of worldly trash and paltry childish pelfe,
Yea, wholly to forsake and leave himselfe.
Heere heard I no confused noise or cry,
Heere saw I no disordered libertie,
Heere no contesting for proprietie,
Heere no contending for prioritie.
Hallelujah, all at once did sing,
A pleasing Dittie to their Soveraigne King.
Heere found I what on Earth I never saw,
Love without hatred, friendship without faining:
No jarre in concord, courage without awe,
In all this Court, nor envie, nor disdaining.
Gods glory, to themselves; Peace, is their aime:
All joyntly this, and nothing else doe claime.
Peace, here in her full perfection shined, (Peace in her
I sought it long below, but found it not: full perfection.
Peace, all heere to maintaine are close combined,
They keepe it sure, not failing in one jot.
When I returne, and make hereof relation,
Earth-dwellers may be brought to imitation.
Oh how was I o’re-joyed with the sight,
And longed heere to make my habitation?
I never thought of any vaine delight,
I nought esteem’d all other recreation.
Yet, more to proove the goodnesse of this place,
One bid me looke on devils wofull case.
(Things by their contraries are cleerest showne) A short survey
He made me at a little hole to peepe, of hell.
Feare not (said he) for to thee be it knowne,
The fiends and soules that lie with them in deepe, (The blessed and
Can neither to us come, nor may we goe damned come not together.
To them: Our God hath well provided so. Luc. 16.
Be sure thou pittie none whom thou see’st there The blessed doe not
Heavens Lawes unchangeable doe so decree: pittie the damned.
For, to our God an injury that were,
And some mayme to our owne felicitie.
“Gods will must serve us for a full content;
“For what he doth, we ought not to relent.
Then voyd of feare, I did as I was taught,
And there beheld an horrible confusion
Of soules, that in the world had lived naught,
Led thereunto by Satans slie delusion.
It’s no delight to harpe upon this string,
Yet I of these a Verse or two must sing.
Blasphemous Atheists held the highest place, (Atheists.
Who once thought hell, and heaven to be fables:
There doe they find how altered is the case,
Now are they fed at devils damned tables.
If any such hap reade these Gospel-Rimes,
Recant for feare, and turne to God betimes.
Curs’t Infidels (Idolaters th’are all) Infidels.
That serve the creature, in the Creators stead:
False Prophets, teaching men from Christ to fall, False prophets.
Who for their sakes upon the Crosse did bleed.
Heere Mahomet and Sergius his Scribe, (Mahomet. Sergius. Arrius.
Both chayn’d with Arrius chiefest of their tribe.
Next t’Infidels, false Christians I behold, (False christians.
That use Religion onely for a cloake:
The Traytor Judas, who his Master sold, (Judas.
Ev’n when he kist him, and most kindly spoke:
False Machiavell, that taught men to beguile, Machiavell.
Could not deceive the devill with his wile.
These all, and millions more foule sprites tormented
In furious flames, with pitch and brimstone fed:
The divels, daily tortures new invented,
Whereto the wretched soules they fiercely led.
There heard I weeping, howling, wofull crying,
Desiring death, and yet were still a dying.
Among them all I spide a damned crue (Murtherers, Manslayers,
Of murthrers, cut-throats, hacksters smear’d with blood, Make-
Seditious make-bates, such as others drue, bates, &c.
To kill and murther all whom they thought good.
All these detested Peace in former dayes,
With their owne weapons them the divell payes.
Th’are whip’t and lash’t with rods of knotted wyer,
Some cut with knives and swords, their flesh all tore:
They have the same which once they did desire,
They cry, Oh spare, but they are whipt the more.
They hated Peace, here peace from them doth flye;
There stabbing shall they find, and never dye.
The furies most doe wreake their wrath on those, (The Devils delight
Ther’s nothing wherein they take more delight: in murthering and killing.
’Tis sport with them to see how this world goes,
That Christians with such blooddy fury fight.
Proud Lucifer, and his black traine all dance,
To see these broyles in Germany and France.
My soule amazed stood that newes to heare,
For when from bodies prison she slipt out,
And mounted up to this celestiall Spheare,
She thought Peace had been towards out of doubt:
Now frustrate of her hope, faine would she stay!
Whereas she is: But th’Angell tels her nay.
Thou must a while goe downe to see the end
Of these hot quarrels ’mongst thy Christen mates:
Weepe, fast, and pray, so God will all amend.
Therewith his former speech he iterates:
Goe, gentle soule, thy bodies prisoner be,
Untill the King of heaven set thee free.
Thus back return’d with an exact Idea
Of Perfect-Peace, which she above had seene:
I seem’d afresh launch’t into a broad sea
Of Peace, whereon before I had not been:
As likewise of debate, strife, foule confusion,
That long might keepe me from a full conclusion.
Me thought I had but newly heere begun,
And onely at my Theame t’have made a glance:
Ten times as much as is already done,
Might yet be added to hold on the dance.
Few words content the wise, them would I please;
Much talke likes others, I write not to these.
My Muse would more, but more she shall not sing;
Inough is held as good as any feast:
Thus much, she hopes may not displease a King.
Her last words to her Patron are exprest,
With Christian heart, in sweetest Hebrew phrase,
Peace be to thee, and unto God be praise.
F I N I S
TO THE REVE-
REND FATHER IN
GOD, Theophilus, LORD BISHOP
of Landaff; sent with the Booke, and craving
his judicious censure.
My Lord, since you were here, I writ a Song,
I know not how to like it, ’cause ’tis mine:
Ballad you may not call it; ’tis too long:
Nor bawble, sith the subject is divine.
Not as a Friend, but as a Judge, reade right:
May it deserve the darknesse, or the Light?
THE LORD BISHOPS CENSURE
The Song you writ, since I was late your ghest,
I look’t through, lik’t the better, ’cause ’twas yours:
Call it, The Song of Songs, A Hymne at least,
The worthy worke of many well-spent houres.
Not as a partiall friend, I’le iudge aright:
It is no deed of darknesse, but of Light.
Sir Raleigh Bussie, Knight,
his Censure of the Booke, subscribed
and returned to the Author,
upon perusall thereof.
While Janus Temple stood, it did declare,
When it was closed, Peace: when open, war.
This booke if clos’d (such is the mist of sight,
Eclips’t from knowledge) we in warres delight:
But when it opens, (as the Sunne doth cleare
All foggy mists) the rayes of Peace appeare.
That earth-built Temple felt the common rage
’Gainst earthly things, foes force, and fading age:
But this Soule-issue while a mortall breathes,
Shall live, and flourish, crown’d with Olive wreathes.
Another of the same, by way of Reply, To the Author.
Whereas you write, my censure savours rather,
Of friend, then Judgment: though i’le not deny
That title holds in me Supremacy:
Yet, as I flew, with judgement I did gather
Those honey-sweets, that had a stranger writ,
I would have prais’d the worth I found in it.
Your Subiect, Peace: your Object, Peace: your aime,
Peace to good men, exprest in peacefull vaine,
A smooth-delighting, and perswasive straine.
And shall not then your peacefull Poem claime
The fruit of Peace? Eternitie is due,
As birth-right unto Peace, and so to you.
Both men of Peace and Warre will reade your Layes,
And gather thence the hony of delight:
Captaines from causelesse warres you doe affright,
Yet so, as that, Warre breeding Peace, you praise.
Shall all men reade, and Peace her birthright give,
And may not I pronounce, Your Layes shall live?
I will not then. Your pleasant Hymne shall cease,
When that the Spring of Helicon is drie,
The Muses losing skill of Poesie;
And bloodie Warre triumpheth over peace.
Till then, my former censure I averre,
So perfect Criticke, that it cannot erre.
WALTER MANSELL, Esquire,
to the Authour.
Gods sacred Charter, to Peace-makers grants
A blessing, that mans thoughts surmonteth farre:
Well may he then, who so divinely chants
Of blessed Peace, among th’alarm’s of warre;
An ample share of blessing claime with these, *Poet and Maker,
Sith he so sweet a *Maker is of Peace. words of one sense
To his worthily esteemed Kinsman, Sir
John Stradling, Knight and Baronet.
Sir, I have seene your Letter, where your love
Did shine upon me, with so cleare a beame
That it my sorrow-clouded thoughts did moue,
From griefe to joy, to feele the each extreame:
I read your Booke, wherein faire peace I finde,
The glew of soules; the knot of bodie and minde.
Having receiv’d an Olive branch from you:
I send you backe the Laurell, as your due.
In laudem Authoris.
Ni tua Hos Equitum mens Caeli arderet amore.
Nique edocta simul Caelitus illa foret
Non sic flagrares tu pacis amore nec Hymnus
Sic bona tot Pacis promeret iste tuus
Quo ceu rite Deo Pacis sine thure litasti
Pacifico Regi sic quoque iure places.
Classica qui cantis Præcones munere pacis.
Pacis Eques praeco vos agit ecce reos.
The same in English.
Except thy minde, with flames of heav’nly love
Did burne, most worthy Knight, and from above
Inlightned, thou could’st not be so inflam’d
With love of Peace, nor yet could’st thou have fram’d
A Poeme, so divinely setting foort,
Of blessed Peace, the plenteous fruits, and worth:
Whereby much do’st thou please the God of Peace,
(Who thee to blesse therefore will never cease:)
And a Peace-making, wise, and pious King;
From whom, through Peace, our earthly blisse doth spring.
Loe how a Martiall Knight, who Peace proclaims,
And at all Christians good, so doing aim’s,
Convinceth you, that of Peace being Preachers
By function, are of strife and discord teachers.
Sweet is the name of Peace, sweeter the thing;
Bless’d be our Halcyon dayes, our peacefull King:
From Englands Peace, as from a fountaine pure,
May Christendome draw Peace that may indure.
Let swords be turn’d to sithes, the blood that's spilt,
Is too too much; too haynous is the guilt.
Repentance fits both sides: both sides had fits;
God send these calmer times more temp’rate wits.
Were worthy Stradlings spirit, in heart or braine
Of arming Germanie, or armed Spaine,
Or France; that swelters in her owne deare blood,
Whil’st Jesuites laugh, and sing, and cry, Good, Good:
Then may our Baronets, Bannerets of alliance,
Joyfully hold, not Banners of Defiance:
And English Trumpets, sound to Nations farre,
Musicke for Peace, not onsets for the Warre.