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us not to regard him as a religious poet; but he has told us, that his life was unspotted by the licence of his rhymes. Let us hope that when, in his touching words (to God in his sickness), he made his home in darkness and sorrow, the mercy of Him in whom he trusted, did indeed renew him, even although "a withered flower *."

Thomas Heywood was one of the most prolific dramatists of an age abounding in works of that description. He says, in the preface to the English Traveller, that he had "an entire hand, or at least a main finger," in two hundred and twenty plays. His copiousness was not the result of weakness. Charles Lamb has commended, in fitting terms, that tearful pathos which cuts to the heart. But his name is only admitted into these pages in the more honourable character of a Sacred Poet. The Hierarchie of the Blessed Angels was published in 1635, and dedicated to Charles the First. It was the produce of his old age, and he cautions the reader in the preface "not to expect any new conceits from old heads," or to look for "green fruit from withered branches." The melody and grace of his dramas will be sought for in vain; unlike Sir Philip Sidney's poet, he does not present the reader at the entrance of the vineyard with a bunch of grapes, so that "full of the delicious flavour he may long to pass in further:" his manner, on the contrary, is somewhat harsh and unpolished, and he

* His Prayer for Absolution is full of piety.—
For these my unbaptized rhymes,
Writ in my wild unhallowed times,
For every sentence, clause, and word,
That's not inlaid with thee, O Lord,
Forgive me, God, and blot each line
Out of my book that is not thine;
But if 'mongst all thou findest one
Worthy thy benediction,
That one of all the rest shall be
The glory of my work, and me.

leads them through difficult and abrupt places; but the rugged path frequently ends in a garden. The poem is divided into nine books, to each of which is appended a commentary, evincing the writer's intimate acquaintance with the abstruser studies of theology. Modern students will hardly be persuaded to turn to this ponderous volume, yet it would well repay the trouble of perusal*. Some of the meditations possess a stern and solemn severity; and the Search after God rises into sublimity:—

I sought thee round about, O thou, my God!

In thine abode.
I said unto the earth, " Speak, art thou He?"

She answered me,
"I am not."—I inquired of creatures all,
In general,

Contained therein;—they with one voice proclaim,
That none amongst them challenged such a name.

I asked the seas, and all the deeps below,

My God to know.
I asked the reptiles, and whatever is,

In the abyss;
Even from the shrimp to the Leviathan,

Inquiry ran:
But in those deserts which no line can sound
The God I sought for was not to be found.

I asked the air, If that were He? but, lo!

It told me, No.
I, from the towering Eagle to the Wren,

Demanded then,
If any feather'd fowl 'mongst them were such;

But they all, much
Offended with my question, in full quire
Answered,—" To find thy God thou must look higher.

I ask'd the heavens, sun, moon, and stars, but they

Said,« We obey
The God thou seek'st."—I ask'd what eye or ear

Could see or hear;

* See some very curious extracts from this Poem in the first volume o! Brydges' Restituta, p. 240.

What in the world I might descry or know,

Above, below:
With an unanimous voice all these things said,
"We are not God, but we by him were made."

I ask'd the world's great universal mass

If that God was?
Which with a mighty and strong voice replied,

As stupified,
"I am not he, O man! for know that I

By him on high
Was fashioned first of nothing, thus instated
And swayed by him, by whom I was created."

I sought the court; but smooth-tongued flattery there

Deceiv'd each ear:
In the thronged city there was selling, buying,

Swearing, and lying;
I' the country, craft in simpleness array'd:

And then I said,
"Vain is my search, although my pains be great—
Where my God is, there can be no deceit."

A scrutiny within myself I then

Even thus began:
"O Man, what art thou ?"—What more could I say,

Than dust and clay?
Frail, mortal, fading, a mere puff, a blast

That cannot last;
Enthroned to-day, to-morrow in an urn;
Formed from that earth to which I must return.

I asked myself, what this great God might be

That fashioned me?
I answered—the all-potent, solely immense,

Surpassing sense;
Unspeakable, inscrutable, eternal,

Lord over all;
The only terrible, strong, just and true,
Who hath no end, and no beginning knew.

He is the well of life, for he doth give

To all that live,
Both breath and being: he is the Creator

Both of the water,
Earth, air, and fire. Of all things that subsist,

He hath the list;
Of all the heavenly host, or what earth claims,
He keeps the scroll, and calls them by their names.

And now, my God, by thine illumining grace

Thy glorious face,
(So far forth as it may discovered be,)

Methinks I see;
And though invisible and infinite,—

To human sight,
Thou, in thy mercy, justice, truth, appearest;
In which to our weak sense thou comest nearest.

O make us apt to seek, and quick to find,

Thou God, most kind!
Give us love, hope, and faith in thee"

To trust, thou God, most just i
Remit all our offences, we entreat;

Most good, most great! Grant that our willing, though unworthy quest May, through thy grace, admit us 'mongst the blest.

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