Archive for April 19th, 2018

Thursday, 19 April 2018

The Death of Shore’s Wife (Jane Shore) from “Beawtie Dishonoured Written Under the Title of Shores Wife Chascun se Plaist ou il se Trouve Mieux” by Anthony Chute

For even as looketh at the sunnes late sitting
A witherd lilly, dry’d, and saplesse quyte,
And in her weakned leaves, inwardly knitting,
Seem’s dead: and yet, retaines a perfect white:
So seem’d her face, when now her fayre did fall
That death still fear’d she would not dye at all.

He saw’t, and sigh’d, and yet he could not see,
Cause to induce his hope-perswading eye,
To thincke that there was any cause that shee,
Could be so passing fayre and yet could dye:
He thinckes the bewtious never life should loose
And yet withall he thinckes, she should not choose:

O what a combat wrought her life and death,
Both clayming interest in her end, to spill her,
Life would not that the fayre should loose her breath:
Death would not loose his right, yet would not kill her,
But lookes upon her with a curious eye,
Doubting (though she were dead) she could not dye.

At last, perswading palenesse seem’s to say,
O she is dead, her breathlesse sences fayled,
Her life hath lost her joy, her death his pray,
And now nor her life, nor her death avayled,
O then did any ever ought else trye
Then life or death that maketh us to dye.

Death tooke delight in her, untill she dyed,
Life fed upon her lookes, he did so way her,
Death and his life upon her end relied,
And greeving life likt her she was so fayre
This lent her living: that prolong’d her breath,
O then ther’s somthing else that kills then death.

For he wisht that he were not death, she might not dye,
Pittieng in this, he greeves he wanteth pietie,
Tyrant in Acte, his will doth this deny
That her death should conferme him in his diety:
And rather then of life he would bereave her
He would give leave to all, to live for ever,

Rather then she should not, he would not be,
Or to a mortall being he would bow,
So she might, all should live as well as she,
(For death did never doubt untill t’was now)
And yet by death if she might gained be,
The world should dye and none should live but she,

But as a Christall with a tender breath
Receives dim thicknesse, and doth seeme obscure
So darkt with palenesse of a breath’d on death
(If it were death that did this darke procure,)
She seem’s alive and yet ah she was gone
And then life greev’d, and death did fetch a grone.

Yet would they part the remnant of her being
Her body went to death: her fame to life
Thus life, and death, in unitie agreeing
Dated the tenor of their sonderie strife,
Death vow’d her body should be eyed never,
Yet life hath vow’d her fame should live for ever.

From: Chute, Anthony, Beawtie dishonoured written under the title of Shores wife Chascun se plaist ou il se trouve mieux, 2005, Text Creation Partnership: Ann Arbor, Michigan and Oxford, pp. 52-54.

Date: 1593

By: Anthony Chute (fl. 1590-1595)