The Queen's Progress: And Other Elizabethan Sketches

The Queen's Progress: And Other Elizabethan Sketches

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The Queen's Progress: And Other Elizabethan Sketches

The Queen's Progress: And Other Elizabethan Sketches

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Excerpt

The following sketches -- for they claim to be no more -- are some of the lighter matters that have floated on a stream of reading and study which has already carried, let it be hoped, a somewhat weightier freight. It is one thing to taste the charm and flavor of an age; it is another to convey it. The days of Elizabeth and James were nothing if not multiform. Their trivialities even have their place, and their power to complete the picture, whether historical or literary: a power not always apprehended in view of the number and variety of the important figures that crowd the spacious canvas of that incomparable time. When Ben Jonson jotted in his commonplacebook the things which took his fancy as he read or the thoughts which rose in his mind touching certain human actions, he called his notes "discoveries made upon men and matter." Later came the appraiser with his stylus and inventory of good things and of bad. Here is neither appraisement nor discovery; but the object simply written down as it appears to him who writes to-day; more truly seen, let us trust, than yesterday: perchance in need of more light from a clearer to-morrow.

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