Sir John Davies
A Lover Out of Fashion
by Sir John Davies
Faith (wench), I cannot court thy sprightly eyes|
With the bass viol placed between my thighs.
I cannot lisp, nor to some fiddle sing,
Nor run upon a high-stretched minikin.°
I cannot whine in puling° elegies,
Entombing Cupid with sad obsequies.
I am not fashioned for these amorous times
To court thy beauty with lascivious rhymes.
I cannot dally, caper, dance and sing,
Oiling my saint with supple sonneting.
I cannot cross my arms, or sigh, Ay me,
Ay me, forlorn — Egregious foppery!
I cannot buss° thy fist, play with thy hair,
Swearing by Jove thou art most debonair.
Not I, by cock! But shall I tell the roundly,
Hark in thine ear: Zounds, I can ( )1 thee soundly.
1. Printed thus, with space for four letters.
[AJ Note: This poem was originally published with Sir John Davies' Epigrams, together with Christopher Marlowe's Ovid's Elegies. The author was attributed as "Ignoto" ("Unknown"), but it has been ascribed to Sir John Davies in the 20th century, most notably by Robert Krueger and Ruby Nemser in their edition of The Poems of Sir John Davies (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1975), and subsequently by Gordon Braden (Sixteenth-Century Poetry, Oxford: Blackwell Pub, 2005), Patrick Cheney (Reading Sixteenth-Century Poetry, Wiley-Blackwell, 2011), and others.]
Sixteenth-century Poetry. Gordon Braden, Ed.
Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2005. 513.
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Created by Anniina Jokinen on September 14, 1996. Last updated March 8, 2012.
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Persons of Interest
Field of the Cloth of Gold, 1520
Pilgrimage of Grace, 1536
The Babington Plot, 1586
The Spanish Armada, 1588
English Renaissance Drama
Images of London:
London in the time of Henry VII. MS. Roy. 16 F. ii.
London, 1510, the earliest view in print
Map of England from Saxton's Descriptio Angliae, 1579
Location Map of Elizabethan London
Plan of the Bankside, Southwark, in Shakespeare's time
Detail of Norden's Map of the Bankside, 1593
Bull and Bear Baiting Rings from the Agas Map (1569-1590, pub. 1631)
Sketch of the Swan Theatre, c. 1596
Westminster in the Seventeenth Century, by Hollar
Visscher's Panoramic View of London, 1616. COLOR