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The posies of George Gascoigne esquire. Jocasta: a tragedie written in Greeke by Euripides, translated and digested into acts by George Gascoigne and Francis Kinwelmersh of Grayes Inne, and there by them presented, 1566.
George Gascoigne (1535-1577) & Francis Kinwelmersh (1538-?1580)
The order of the laste [fifth] dumbe shewe.
First the stillpipes sounded a very mournful melody, in which time came upon the stage a woman clothed in a white garment, on hir head a piller, double faced, the formost face fair and smiling, the other behinde blacke and louring, muffled with a white laune about hir eyes, hir lap ful of jewelles, sitting in a charyot, hir legges naked, hir fete set upon a great round bal, and beyng drawen in by iiii noble personages : she led in a string on hir right hand, ii kings crowned, and in hir lefte hand ii poore slaves very meanly attyred. After she was drawen about the stage, she stayed a litle, changing the kings unto the left hande and the slaves unto the right hand; taking the crownes from the kings heads she crowned therwith the ii slaves, and casting the vyle clothes of the slaves upon the kings, she despoyled the kings of their robes, and therwith apparelled the slaves. This done, she was drawen eftsones about the stage in this order, and then departed, leaving unto us a plaine type or figure of unstable fortune, who dothe oftentimes raise to heigthe of dignitie the vile and unnoble, and in like manner throweth downe from the place of promotion even those whom before she hir selfe had thither advaunced : after hir departure came in Duke Creon with foure gentlemen wayting upon him, and lamented the death of Meneceus his sonne in this maner.
Each act of
is preceded by a a dumb show, the music for which is indicated. Here the 'stillpipes' may have indicated recorders.
This is actually a translation from Lodovico Dolce's Italian version of the
Francis Kinwelmersh translated only Acts I and IV of
, neither of which concern us here.
First published in 1573 under the title
A Hundredth Sundry Flowres bound up in one small Posie. Gathered partly (by translation) in the fyne outlandish Gardens of Euripides, Ovid, Petrarch, Ariosto and others; and partly by Invention out of our owne fruitfull Orchardes in Englande, Yelding Sundrie Savours of tragical, comical and moral discourse, bothe pleasaunt and profitable, to the well-smelling noses of learned readers
, by London printer Richarde Smith.
Gascoigne was an English poet, soldier and unsuccessful courtier. Kinwelmersh (Kynwelmarsh, Kindlemarsh) was a minor Elizabethan poet and dramatist.
Welch (1911/1916: 131).
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