Page images
PDF
EPUB

written, I think, in his early manhood. The conceits with which they abound, and a certain crude richness of diction, wherein maturity and immaturity struggle for mastery, determine their date.”

MRS. C. F. ASHMEAD WINDLE.

[Address to the New Shakspere Society of London. Discovery of Lord

Verulam's Undoubted Authorship of the “Shakspere” Works. San
Francisco, 1881.]

In the “Shakspere" plays, Bacon expresses an ENIGMA under a VEILED ALLEGORY. The key to the running allegory is contained in the mystery of the Sonnets. An “absolute divineness of ideality underlies their mere outward form, as well as a plaintive autobiographical information of the poet's consciousness.” Mrs. Windle illustrates her discovery by the play of Cymbeline, where Posthumu symbolizes the posthumous fame of Bacon, Cloten (clothing) his living bodily personality, and Morgan (my organ) the Novum Organum. Posthumus is the son of Sicilius : now the sonnet-form is of Sicilian origin. Sicilius therefore signifies the poetic genius invoked in the sonnets of Bacon as a “lovely boy,” and besought to beget “copies” of itself, which should gain an enduring fame. Hence Posthumus represents the posthumous fame promised in the Sonnets. Tenantius, by whom Sicilius had his titles” of beauty, grace, and honour, was the writer or dweller in the Sonnets, who gained the sur-addition Leonatus, and he, of course, signifies the author of the dramas, Francis Bacon. “I feel," writes Mrs. Windle, “that my penetration into, and unfolding of the inmost mind and heart of these plays, is a realization of the deepest reach of sympathetic intuition of which the human intellect and soul are capable-only short of that attained by the immortal dramatist himself.”

SONNETS.

TO THE · ONLIE · BEGETTER. OF.

THESE . INSVING . SONNETS .

M. W. H. ALL. HAPPINESSE.

AND. THAT. ETERNITIE.

PROMISED.

BY.

OVR. EVER-LIVING · POET.

WISHETH.

THE WELL-WISHING .

ADVENT VRER . IN.

SETTING.

FORTH.

T. T.

I.

From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty's rose might never die,
But as the riper should by time decease,
His tender heir might bear his memory :
But thou, contracted to thine own bright eyes,
Feed'st thy light's flame with self-substantial fuel,
Making a famine where abundance lies,
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.
Thou that art now the world's fresh ornament
And only herald to the gaudy spring,
Within thine own bud buriest thy content,
And, tender churl, makest waste in niggarding.

Pity the world, or else this glutton be,
To eat the world's due, by the grave and thee.

II.

When forty winters shall besiege thy brow
And dig deep trenches in thy beauty's field,
Thy youth's proud livery, so gazed on now,
Will be a tatter'd weed, of small worth held:
Then being ask'd where all thy beauty lies,
Where all the treasure of thy lusty days,
To say, within thine own deep-sunken eyes,
Were an all-eating shame and thriftless praise.
How much more praise deserved thy beauty's use,
If thou couldst answer, “ This fair child of mine
Shall sum my count and make my old excuse,”
Proving his beauty by succession thine!

This were to be new made when thou art old,
And see thy blood warm when thou feel'st it cold.

I

« PreviousContinue »