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may read actions of antiquity discoursed; in this abridgement, find the actors themselves discoursing; in some kind practised as well what to speak, as speaking why to do. Your lordship is a most competent judge, in expressions of such credit; commissioned by your known ability in examining, and enabled by your knowledge in determining, the monuments of times. Eminent titles may, indeed, inform who their owners are, not often what. To your's the addition of that information in both, cannot in any application be observed flattery; the authority being established by truth. I can only acknowledge the errours in writing mine own; the worthiness of the subject written being a perfection in the story, and of it. The custom of your lord. ship's entertainments (even to strangers) is rather an example than a fashion: in which consideration I dare not profess a curiosity ; but am only studi, ous that your lordship will please, amongst such as best honour your goodness, to admit into your no: ble construction,

John FORD,


STUDIES have, of this nature, been of late
So out of fashion, so unfollowed, that
It is become more justice, to revive
The antic follies of the times, than strive
To countenance wise industry: no want
Of art doth render wit, or lame, or scail,
Or slothful, in the purchase of fresh bays;
But want of truth in them who give the praise
To their self-love, presuming to out-do
The writer, or (for need) the actors too.
But such this author's silence best befits,
Who bids them be in love with their own wits.
From him, to clearer judgments, we can sa
He shows a history, couched in a play:
A history of noble mention, known,
Famous, and true: most noble, 'cause our own;
Not forged from Italy, from France, from Spain,
But chronicled at home; as rich in strain
Of brave attempts, as ever fertile rage
In action could beget to grace the stage.
We cannot limit scenes, for the whole land
Itself appeared too narrow to withstand
Competitors for kingdoms: nor is here
Unnecessary mirth forced, to endear
A multitude : on these two rests the fate
Of worthy expectation, truth and state.


Henry VII., King of England.
Sir WILLIAM STANLEY, Lord Chamberlain.
Earl of OxFORD.
Earl of SURREY.
Fox, Bishop of Durham.
Urswick, Chaplain to the King.
Hialas, a Spanish Agent.

JAMES IV., King of Scotland.
Earl of HUNTLEY.
MARCHMONT, a Herald.

STEPHEN FRION, his Secretary.
John A-WATER, Mayor of Cork.
HERON, a mercer.
SKETON, a tailor.
ASTLEY, a scrivener.


Lady KATHERINE Gordon, wife to PERKIN.
Countess of CRAWFORD.
Jane Douglas, Lady KATHERINE's maid.

Sheriff, Constable, Officers, Serving-men, Masquers,

and Soldiers.

Scene, Great Britain.

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