Thomas Humphry Ward, ed. The English Poets. 18801918. Vol. II. The Seventeenth Century: Ben Jonson to Dryden Epigrams: An Epitaph on Salathiel Pavy, a Child of Queen Elizabeths Chapel
By Ben Jonson (15721637)
W EEP 1 with me, all you that read
This little story;
And know, for whom a tear you shed
Deaths self is sorry.
Twas a child that so did thrive 5
In grace and feature,
As Heaven and Nature seemed to strive
Which owned the creature.
Years he numbered scarce thirteen
When Fates turned cruel, 10
Yet three filled zodiacs had he been
The stages jewel;
And did act, what now we moan,
Old men so duly,
As, sooth, the Parcæ thought him one, 15
He played so truly.
So, by error to his fate
They all consented;
But viewing him since, alas, too late
They have repented; 20
And have sought to give new birth
In baths to steep him;
But being so much too good for earth, Heaven vows to keep him.
These children (called in the next reign Children of Her Majestys Revels) were trained up to act before the Queen. Salathiel had acted in two of Jonsons plays, in 1600, and in 1601, when he is supposed to have died. [ Note 1. back]