By Sir John Davies
TO HIS GOOD FRIEND SIR ANTHONY
HERE my Chameleon Muse herself doth change
to diverse shapes of gross absurdities,
And like an Antic1 mocks with fashion strange
The fond2 admirers of lewd gulleries.
Your judgement sees with pity, and with scorn
The bastard Sonnets of the Rhymers base,
Which in this whisking age are daily born
To their own shames, and Poetry's disgrace.
Yet some praise those and some perhaps will praise
Even these of mine : and therefore these I send
To you that pass in Court your glorious days ;
Yet if some rich rash gull these Rhymes commend
Thus you may set this formal wit to school,
Use your own grace, and beg him for a fool.
1 = motley-dressed jester or fool. (Grosart).
2 = foolish. (Grosart).
Gulleries, trickeries, frauds.
Whisking, a) fast-moving; b) great.
Gull, fool, dupe.
Set. . .school, set him straight.
Beg. . .fool, show him for a fool.
Note on the text:
Transcribed, modernized, and annotated by Anniina Jokinen from
Davies, Sir John. The Complete Poems of Sir John Davies. Vol II.
Rev. Alexander B, Grosart, Ed.
London: Chatto and Windus, Piccadilly, 1876. 55.
||to Works of Sir John Davies
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Created by Anniina Jokinen on November 20, 1999. December 10, 2011.
King Henry VII
Elizabeth of York
King Henry VIII
Queen Catherine of Aragon
Queen Anne Boleyn
Queen Jane Seymour
Queen Anne of Cleves
Queen Catherine Howard
Queen Katherine Parr
King Edward VI
Lady Jane Grey
Queen Mary I
Queen Elizabeth I
Renaissance English Writers
Bishop John Fisher
Sir Thomas More
Sir Thomas Wyatt
Sir Thomas Hoby
Sir Philip Sidney
Edward de Vere
Sir Walter Ralegh
Mary Sidney Herbert
Sir John Davies
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