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Goldsmith's minor poetry, the relationship will be apparent :—

My conscience is my crown,

Contented thoughts my rest;
My heart is happy in itself;

My bliss is in my breast.
Enough, I reckon wealth;

A mean, the surest lot;
That lies too high for base contempt,

Too low for envy's shot.
My wishes are but few,

All easy to fulfil:
I make the limits of my power

The bounds unto my will.
I have no hopes but one,

Which is of heavenly reign:
Effects attained, or not desired,

All lower hopes refrain.

I feel no care of coin;

Well-doing is my wealth:
•J My mind to me an empire is,

While Grace affordeth health.
I wrestle not with rage,

While fury's flame doth burn;
It is in vain to stop the stream,

Until the tide doth turn.
But when the flame is out,

And ebbing wrath doth end;
I turn a late enraged foe

Into a quiet friend;
And taught with often proof,

A tempered calm I find
To be most solace to itself,

Best cure for angry mind.

No change of fortune's calms

Can cast my comforts down:
When fortune smiles, I smile to think

How quickly she will frown;

And when in froward mood,

She moved an angry foe:
Small gain I found to let her come,

Less loss to let her go.

If the moral tone of Southwell remind us of Goldsmith, his serious and unornamented strains of devotion present an equal resemblance to the Canticles of Racine. In the dedication of St. Peter's Complaint, he objects to the "idle fancies" of poets, and limits his ambition to the weaving " a new web in his own loom," for which purpose he laid " a few coarse threads together." Some of these threads have wound themselves round the heart. Jonson expressed, to Drummond of Hawthornden, his admiration of Southwell, and preferred the Burning Babe to many of his own compositions.

The admirers of Southwell's poetry will not withhold their sympathy from the Divine Centurie of Spiritual Sonnets, by his contemporary Barnabe Barnes. This little collection of poems, originally published in 1595, has been reprinted by Mr. Park in his Heliconia, but, owing to the very expensive form of the work, without adding much to their popularity. Barnes, upon whom the flattery of friendship bestowed the appellation of Petrarch's scholar, while it elevated him to an equality with Spenser, was the subject of frequent satire during his life. Few particulars of his history have been preserved. He was a younger son of Dr. Richard Barnes, bishop of Durham, and was born about the year 1569. At the age of seventeen he became a student of Brazen-nose College, Oxford, but left the university without a degree. "What became of him afterwards," says Wood, " I know not." He appears, however, to have accompanied the expedition sent to France by Elizabeth, in 1591, under the command of Devereux, Earl of Essex. He was then in his twenty-second year, and he probably remained in that country until 1594.

Nash accuses him of running away from battle, and of subsequently disgracing himself still more, by robbing a nobleman's steward of a gold chain. But these charges rest upon no foundation, and were probably the result of


malignity on the part of Nash, who remembered that Barnes had sided with Gabriel Harvey in one of the numerous quarrels which, at that period, agitated, in no very decorous manner, the literary public*.

The sonnets, we are told by the author, were composed during his travels in France, and seem to have been viewed by him in the light of religious exercises. He speaks of them as "prescribed tasks." No person can read them, I think, without feeling his thoughts calmed, and his faith strengthened. The piety of the writer does not chill us with the austerity of its features; it is humble, joyful, and confident, though expressed with some of the affectation of the age.

O benigne Father, let my suits ascend

And please thy gracious ears, from my soul sent;

Even as those sweet perfumes of incense went,
From our forefathers' altars, who didst lend
Thy nostrils to that myrrh which they did send;

Even as I now crave thine ears to be lent.

My soul, my soul is wholly wholly bent
To do thee condignet service, and amend;

To flee for refuge to thy wounded breast,
To suck the balm of my salvation thence,

In sweet repose to take eternal rest,
As thy child folded in thy arms' defence.
But then my flesh, methought, by Sathan fired,
Said—my proud sinful soul in vain aspired.

* Thomas Nash was the contemporary of Greene, the dramatic poet, at Cambridge, and took his B. A. degree at St. John's, in 1585. His name is familiar to all students of our old poetry, as the bitter antagonist of Gabriel Harvey. This singular man, who united to ripe scholarship a very ridiculous propensity for writing verses, enjoyed considerable popularity in his day. He was the friend of Spenser, with whom he became acquainted at Cambridge, and to whose Faery Queen he prefixed the sweetest lines he ever wrote. But Harvey's vanity surpassed all his other qualifications, Upon his return from Italy he dressed himself in the Venetian costume, and was remarkable for the uncommon richness and costliness of his attire. The circumstance, however, of his father having been a rope-maker at Saffron Walden, seems to have imhittered his life. Hence arose his enmity to the unhappy Greene, who some weeks before his death published a tract containing reflections upon rope-makers in general.—See the works of RobertGreene, vol. i. p. 84,&c. t Worthy.

The next sonnet is more vigorous and poetical; while Barnes wrote with an almost constant reference to the Italian model, he frequently continues the sense beyond the termination of the line; a practice applauded by Warton. Ben Jonson compared a sonnet to that "tyrant's bed," where they who were too short were stretched by the rack, and they who were too long were compressed into the proper size.

Unto my spirit lend an angel's wing,

By which it might mount to that place of rest,

Where Paradise may me relieve opprest:

Lend to my tongue an angel's voice to sing

Thy praise my comfort; and for ever hring

My notes thereof from the bright East to West;

Thy mercy lend unto my soul distrest,

Thy grace unto my wits; then shall the sling

Of Righteousness that monster Sathan kill,

Who with dispair my dear salvation dared;

And, like the Philistine, stood breathing still

Proud threats against my soul for heaven prepared.

At length I like an angel shall appear

In spotless white, an angel's robe to wear.

When Dr. Bliss published his edition of Wood's, Athenae, the address to Content was the only poem by Barnes with which he was acquainted, but it certainly justified his desire to know more.

Ah! sweet Content, where is thy mild abode?
Is it with shepherds and light-hearted swains,
Which sing upon the downs and pipe abroad,

Leading their flocks and calling unto plains!

Ah! sweet Content, where dost thou safely rest?
In heaven with angels which the praises sing
Of Him that made, and rolls at his behest,

The minds, and parts of every living thing!

Ah! sweet Content, where doth thine harbour hold?
Is it in churches with religious men
Which praise the Gods with prayers manifold,

And in their studies meditate it then?

Whether thou dost in heaven or earth appeare,

Be where thou wilt, thou wilt not harbour here.

A passing notice may be taken of Henry Constable, another rhymer belonging to this period. His Spiritual Sonnets to the Honour of God and his Saints have been printed in the Heliconia. Of the author little is known. Sir John Harrington calls him "a well-learned gentleman, and noted sonnet-writer." Malone thinks that he was a member of St. John's College, Cambridge, and took his Bachelor's degree in 1579*; and Dr. Birch supposes him to have been a zealous Roman Catholic, and compelled, on account of his religious tenets, to reside abroad during a considerable portion of the reign of Elizabeth. This opinion is countenanced by the general tone of his poems, and by several letters addressed, during his absence, to his friends in England. He was a favourite of Ben Jonson, who speaks of "Constable's ambrosiack musicand Boltont mentions him in the same sentence with Sackville. His style abounds in conceits, without being enriched by fancy :—

To Saint Mary Magdalen.

Such as retired from sight of men, like thee,
By penance seek the joys of heaven to win,
In deserts make their paradise begin,

And even amongst wild beasts do angels see;

In such a place my soul doth seem to be,
When in my body she laments her sin,
And none but brutal passions finds therein,

Except they be sent down from heaven to me.

Yet if these praises God to me impart,
Which He inspired thy blessed heart withall,

I may find heaven in my retired heart!

And if thou change the object of my love,
The wing'd Affection, which men Cupid call,

May get his sight, and like an angel prove.

* Malone's Shakspeare, vol. x. p. 74. t" Noble Henry Constable was a great master in English tongue, nor had any gentleman of our nation a more pure, quick, or higher delivery of conceit.''—Bolton's Hypercritica. Unfortunately, the sonnet instanced by the worthy critic in support of his good opinion, is almost the worst ever written by the author.

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