Saturday, November 24, 2012



Anonymous, "Nights first song," in Luminalia, or The Festivall of Light. Personated in a Masque at Court, by the Queenes Majestie, and her Ladies. On Shrovetuesday Night, 1637 (London: Printed by Iohn Haviland for Thomas Walkley, 1637), pp. 5-6:
In wet and cloudy mists, I sloowly rise,
    As with mine owne dull weight opprest,
To close with sleep the jealous lovers eyes,
    And give forsaken Virgins rest.

Th' adventrous Merchant and the Mariner,
    (Whom stormes all day vex in the deep)
Beginne to trust the windes when I appeare,
    And lose their dangers in their sleep.

The studious that consume their brains and sight,
    In search where doubtfull knowledge lies,
Grow wearie of their fruitlesse use of light,
    And wish my shades to ease their eyes.

Th' ambitious toyling Statesman that prepares
    Great mischiefes ere the day begins,
Not measures day by houres, but by his cares;
    And night must intermit his sinnes.

Then why, when my slow Chariot us'd to clime,
    Did old mistaking Sages weepe?
As if my Empire did usurpe their time,
    And houres were lost when spent in sleep.

I come to ease their labours and prevent
    That wearinesse which would destroy:
The profit of their toyles are still miss-spent
    Till rest enables to enjoy.

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