Prudence usher'd by the Host, takes her Seat of Judicature,
Nurse, Frank, the Two Lords, Beaufort, and Latimer,
assist of the Bench: The Lady and Lovel are brought in,
and sit on the Two sides of the Stage, confronting each the other.
Pru. Here set the hour; but first produce the parties;
And clear the Court. The time is now of price.
Host. Jug, get you down, and Trundle get you up,
You shall be Crier. ferret, here, the Clerk.
Jordan, smell you without, till the Ladies call you;
Take down the Fiddlers too, silence that noise,
Deep, i' the Cellar, safe. Pru. Who keeps the Watch?
Host. Old Sheelinin here, is the Madam Tell-clock.
Nur. No fait and trot, sweet maister, I shall sleep;
I fait I shall. Bea. I prithee do then, Scrich-owl.
She brings to mind the Fable o' the Dragon,
That kept the Hesperian Fruit. Would I could charm her.
Host. Trundle will do it with his Hum. Come Trundle.
Precede him ferret, i' the form.
Fer. O yes, O yes, | Tru. O yes, &c.
Whereas there hath been awarded, | Whereas, &c.
By the Queen Regent of Love. | By the Queen, &c.
In his high Court of Soveraignity, | In this high, &c.
Two special hours of Address, | Two special, &c.
To Herbert Lovel, Appellant, | To Herbert, &c.
Against the Lady frampul, Defendant. | Against the, &c.
Herbert Lovel, Come into the Court, | Herbert Lov. &c.
Make challenge to thy first hour, | Make, &c.
And save thee and thy Bail. | And save, &c.
Host. Lo, louting where he comes into the Court!
Clerk of the Soveraignty take his appearance.
And how accoutred, how design'd he comes!
Fer. T's done. Now Cryer, call the Lady Frampul,
And by the name of,
Frances, Lady Frampul, Defendant, | Tru. Francis &c.
Come into the Court, | Come into the, &c.
Make answer to the Award, | Make asnwer, &c.
And save thee and thy Bail. | And save thee, &c.
Host. She makes a noble, and a just Appearance.
Set it down likewise, and how arm'd she comes.
Pru. Usher of Loves Court give 'em their Oath,
According to the Form, upon Loves Missal.
Host. Arise and lay you hands upon the Book.
Herbert Lovel, Appellant, and Lady Frances Frampul,
Defendant, you shall swear upon the Liturgy of Love,
Ovid de arte amandi, That you neither have, ne will
have, nor in any wise bear about you, thing, or things,
pointed, or blunt, within these lists, other than what
are natural and allow'd by the Court: No inchanted
Arms, or Weapons, Stones of Vertue, Herb of Grace,
Charm, Character, Spell. Philtre, or other Power than
Loves only, and the justness of your Cause. So help you
Love, his Mother, and the Contents of this Book: Kiss
it. Return unto your Seats. Crier bid silence.
Tru. O yes, O yes, O yes.
Fer. I' the name o' the Soveraign of Love, | Tru. I' the &c.
Notice is given by the Court, | Notice is, &c.
To the Appellant, and Defendant, | To the Ap. &c.
That the first hour of Address proceeds. | That the, &c.
And Love save the Soveraign. | And love, &c.
Tru. Every man or woman keep silence pain of imprisonment.
Pru. Do your endeavours in the name of Love.
Lov. To make my first Approaches, then, in Love.
Lad. Tell us what love is, that we may be sure
There is such a thing, and that it is in nature.
Lov. Excellent Lady, I did not expect
To meet an Infidel! much less an Atheist!
Here in Love's lists! of so much unbelief!
To raise a Question of his being -- Host. Well charg'd!
Lov. I rather thought, and, with Religion, think,
Had all the Character of Love been lost,
His Lines, Demensions, and whole Signature
Raz'd and defac'd, with dull humanity:
That both his Nature, and his Essence might
Have found their mighty instauration here,
Here where the confluence of Fair and Good,
Meets to make up all Beauty. For, what else
Is Love, but the most noble, pure affection
Of what is truly Beautiful and Fair?
Desire of union with the thing beloved?
(Bea. Have the Assistants of the Court their Votes,
And writ of Priviledge, to speak them freely?)
Pru. Yes, to assist; but not to interrupt.
Bea. Then I have read somewhere, that man and woman,
Were, in the first Creation, both one piece,
And being cleft asunder, ever since,
Love was an appetite to be rejoin'd.
As for Example -- Nur. Cramo-cree! what mean'sh tou?
Bea. Only to kiss, and part. Host. So much is lawful.
Lat. And stands with the Prerogative of Loves Court!
Lov. It is a Fable of Plato's, in his Banquet,
And uttered there by Aristophanes.
Host. 'Twas well remembred here, and to good use.)
But on with your Description, what Love is.
Desire of union with the thing belov'd.
Lov. I meant a Definition. For I make
The efficient cause, what's Beautiful, and Fair.
The formal cause, the appetite of Union.
The final cause of union it self.
But larger, if you'll have it, by description:
It is a flame and ardour of the mind,
Dead, in the proper Corps, quick in another's:
Transfers the Lover into the Loved.
That he or she, that loves, engraves, or stamps
Th' Ideea of what they love, first in themselves:
Or, like to Glasses, so their minds take in
The Forms of their belov'd, and them reflect.
It is the likeness of Affections,
Is both the parent and the nurse of Love.
Love is a spiritual coupling of two Souls,
So much more excellent, as it least relates
Unto the Body; circular, eternal;
Not fain'd, or made, but horn: And then, so precious,
As nought can value it, but it self. So free
As nothing can command it but it self.
And in it self so round, so liberal,
As where it favours in, it bestows it self.
(Bea. And that I do; here my whole self I tender,
According to the practice o' the Court.
Nur. I'tish a naughty practish, a lewd Practish,
Be quiet man, dou shalt not leip her here.
Bea. Leap her? I lip her foolish Queen at Arms,
Thy Balzon's false: wilt thou blaspheme thine Office?)
Lov. but we must take and understand this Love
Along still as a name of Dignity:
Not pleasure. (Host. Mark you that, my light young Lord?)
Lov. True love hath no unworthy thought, no light,
Loose unbecoming Appetite, or Strain.
But fixed, constant, pure, immutable.
(Bea. I relish not these Philosophical Feasts;
Give me a Banquet o' Sense, like that of Ovid:
A Form to take the Eye; a Voice mine Ear;
Pure Aromaticks, to mine Scent; a soft,
Smooth, dainty Hand to touch; and, for my taste,
Ambrosiack Kisses to melt down the Palat.)
Lov. They are the earthly, lower form of Lovers,
Are only taken with what strikes the Senes!
And love by that loose scale. Altho I grant,
We like what's fair and graceful in an Object,
And (true) would use it, in them all we tend to,
Both of our civil and domestick deeds,
In ordering of an Army, in our Stile,
Apparel, Gesture, Building, or what not?
All arts and actions do affect their BEauty.
But put the case, in travel I mey meet
Some gorgeous Structure, a brave Frontispiece,
Shall I stay Captive i' the outer Court,
Surpiz'd with that, and not advance to know
Who dwells there, and inhabiteth the House?
There is my Friendship to be made, within;
With what can love me again: not with the Walls,
Doors, Windows, Architrabes, the Frieze, and Coronice.
My End is lost in loving of a Face,
An Eye, Lip, Nose, Hand, Foot, or other part,
Whose all is but a Statue, if the Mind
Move not, which only can make the return.
The End of Love is, to have Two made One
In will, and if affection, that the Minds
Be first inoculated, not the Bodies.
Bea. Gi' me the Body, if it be a good one.
Fra. Nay, sweet, my Lord, I must appeal the Soveraign
For better Quarter, if you hold your practice.
Tru. Silence, pain of imprisonment: Hear the Court.
Lov. The Bodies Love is frail, subject to change,
And alter still with it: The Mind's is firm,
One and the same, proceedeth first from weighing,
And well examining what is fair and good;
Then what is like in Reason, fit in Manners;
That breeds good will: good will desire of Union.
So Knowledge first begets Benevoloence,
Benevolence breeds Friendship, Friendship loves:
And where it starts or steps aside from this,
It is a meer degenerous appetite,
A lost, oblique, deprav'd affection,
And bears no mark of character of Love.
Lad. How am I changed! By what Alchemy
Of Love, or language, am I thus translated!
His Tingue is tip'd with the Philosophers Stone,
And that hath touch'd me through every Vein!
I feel that transmutation o' my Blood,
As I were quite become another creature,
And all he speaks, it is Projection!
Pru. Well feign'd, my Lady: now her Parts begin!
Lat. And she will act 'em subtily.
Pru. She fails me else.
Lov. Nor do they trespass within bounds of pardon,
That giving way, and license to their love,
Divest him of his noblest Ornaments,
Which are his Modesty, and Shamfac'dness:
And so they do, that have unfit designs
Upon the Parties they pretend to love.
For what's more monstruous, more a Prodigy,
Than to hear me protest truth of affection
Unto a person that I would dishonour?
And what's more dishonour, than defacing
Another's good with forfeiting mine own?
And drawing on a Fellowship of sin;
From note of which, tho (for a while) we may
Be both kept safe, by caution, yet the Conscience
Cannot be cleans'd. For what was hitherto
Call'd by the Name of Love, becomes destroy'd
Then, with the Fact; the Innocency lost,
The bating of affection soon will follow:
And Love is never true that is not lasting.
No more than any can be pure or perfect,
That entertains more than one Object, Dixi.
Lad. O speak, and speak for ever! let min' ear
Be feasted still, and filled with this Banquest!
No sense can ever surfeit on such truth!
It is the Marrow of all lovers Tenents!
Who hath read Plato, Heliodore, or Tatius,
Sidney, D'Urse or all Lovers fathers, like him?
He, is there the Master of the Sentences,
Their School, their Commentary, Text, and Gloss,
And breathes the true Divinity of Love!
Pru. Excellent Actor! how she hits this Passion!
Lad. Where have I liv'd, in Heresie, so long
Out o' the Congregation of Love,
And stood irregular, by all his Canons?
Lat. But do you think she plays?
Pru. Upo' my Soveraignty,
Mark her anon.
Lat. I shake, and am half jealous.
Lad. What Penance shall I do to be receiv'd,
And reconcil'd to the Church of Love?
Go on Procession, bare-foot, to his Image,
And say some hundred penitential Verses,
There, out of Chaucers Troilus, and Cresside?
Or to his Mothers Shrine, vow a Wax-Candle
As large as the Town May-Pole is, and pay it!
Enjoyn me any thing this Court thinks fit,
For I have trespass'd, and blasphemed Love:
I have, indeed, despis'd his Deity,
Whom (till this Miracle wrought on me) I knew not.
Now I adore Love, and would kiss the Rushes
That bear this Reverend Gentleman, his Priest,
If that would expiate -- but I fear it will not.
For, tho he be somewhat struck in years, and old
Enough to be my Father, he is wise,
And only wise men love, the other covet.
I could begin to be in love with him,
But will not tell him yet, because I hope
T' enjoy the other Hour with more delight,
And prove him farther.
Pru. Most Socratick Lady!
Or, if you will Ironick! gi' you joy
O' your Platonick Love here, Mr. Lovel.
But pay him his first Kiss, yet, i' the Court,
Which is a Debt, and due: for the Hour's run.
Lad. How swift is Time, and slily steals away
From them would hug it, value it, embrace it?
I should have thought it scarce had run ten minutes,
When the whole Hour is fled. Here, take your Kiss, Sir,
Which I most willing tender you in Court.
(Bea. And we do imitate -- )
Lad. And I could wish,
poor narrow Nature had decreed it so --
But that is past, irrevocable , now:
She did her kind, according to her latitude --
Pru. Beware, you do not conjure up a Spirit
You cannot lay.
Lad. I dare you, do your worst,
Shew me but such an injustice: I would thank you
To alter your award.
Lat. Sure she is serious!
I shall have another fit of Jealousie!
I feel a grudging!
Host. Chear up, Noble Ghest,
We cannot guess what this may come to yet;
The Brain of Man, or Woman, is uncertain!
Lov. Tut, she dissembles! all is personated,
And counterfeit comes from her! If it were not,
The Spanish Monarchy, with both the Indies,
Could not buy off the treasure of this Kiss,
Or half give balance for my happiness.
Host. Why, as it is yet, it glads my light Heart
To see you rouz'd thus from a sleepy humor
Of drouzy, accidental melancholy;
And all those brave parts of your Soul awake,
That did before seem drown'd, and buried in you!
That you express your self, as you had back'd
The Muses Horse! or got Belerophons arms!
What news with Fly?
Fly. News of a newer Lady,
A finer, fresher, braver, bonnier Beauty,
A very bona Roba, and a Bouncer!
In yellow, glistering, golden Satten. Lad. Pru,
Adjourn the Court.
Pru. Cry, Trundle -- Tru. O yes,
Any Man, or Woman, that hath any personal attendance
To give unto the Court; Keep the Second Hour,
And Love save the Sov'raign.