Edward Farr, ed. Select Poetry of the Reign of King James the First. 1847. Invective: The Hate of Treason
XLV. Nicholas Breton
O 1 the sweet sence of loves humilitie!
Which feares displeasure in a dearest friend,
The onely note of Truths nobilitie,
Whose worthy grace is graced without end;
For who wants faith, wants little of a friend; 5
While faithfull love, in humble truth approved,
Doth euer liue, of God and man beloued.
Alas! the little time of Natures leave,
To runne the course of her allotted care,
Where idle shadowes the eie deceaue, 10
That onely hunteth after Fortunes show,
And bad must leaue it, ere it be aware:
Looke, looke at heauen, and let the world go by,
Better to die to liue, than liue to die.
Let pride be hatefull vnto euery state, 15
It is a vice with vertue not allowed;
And such a vice as vertue hath in hate,
For vertue neuer makes the spirit prowde,
And in advauncement of nobilitie
Gives greatest graces, Truths humilitie. 20
Which grace is gracious in the sight of God,
Makes men as saints and women angells seeme,
Makes sinne forgotten, mercy vse no rod,
And constant faith to prooue in great esteeme;
While wisdomes care can neuer truth misdeem, 25
But is in some a blessing of the highest, And to the nature of himself the nighest.
XLV. Nicholas Breton.This author wrote chiefly in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. The extracts in this volume are from Honest Counsaile: A merry fitte of a poetical furie; good to read, better to follow, 1605; and Invective: the Hate of Treason, 1616. [ Note 1. back]