Montemayor's Diana

Page 344

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When this song in the praise of Fortune was ended, then in dispraise of time (for now as I tolde you the answere of his marriage was deferred for one moneth, and euery short hower seemed a long yeere vnto him) he sung this Sonnet. But I will goe on with my discourse, and will not tell it you, bicause I shall but trouble you (I thinke) with recitall of it, as it hath done me by seeing it so imperfect, and not ended. In faith thou art too extreme in thy opinions (said Lord Felix) and though I had diuers occasions offered me to aske thee many questions, yet I haue held my peace vnto the end, bicause thou mightest proceede without interruption, and it seemes of purpose thou seekest many digressions to depriue vs of that, wherein we take no small delight. Then doe vs so great a pleasure, as to tell vs the song that was begun, and why it was not ended, and heere we will endeuour (if we can) to supplie the wants of it. Since you offer me so faire (said Placindus) I will tell it you, but I thinke it will be somewhat hard for you. Then lend a patient eare to the vnhappie Sonnet, which I thinke will not please you so well.

ALl you that haue vnwoorthily complained
Of Loue, and Fortune, each a mighty powre:
On Time, that doth your sweete contents deuowre
Turne them: For more heereby is to be gained.
For time is false: For if content vnfained
It giueth thee, it passeth in an howre;
But still it staies if it begins to lowre.
It comes not wisht for, nor doth stay obtained:
Time hath no friend in any thing created,
For euery thing it wasteth and consumeth,
And doth not spare so much as any body &c.

The Boy was yet redoubling the foote of the last verse, when Beldanisus, who serued Marthea, came suddenly vpon Sagastes, and marred all the musicke, hauing left his brother and three of his cosins in reareward to helpe him, if any came foorth in Sagastes defence. Disteus that now, &c.
Stay a little (said Lord Felix) for it shall not be amisse (with leau of this good company) that I cut off the thread of this discourse, when as so often it hath beene broken off. And before I forget it, declare vnto me but halfe of one of those verses aboue, that begins thus:

It fittteth not my song, &c.

The meaning whereof I doe not vnderstand no more then the words. To answer your demaund Lord Felix (said Placindus) it is requisite I had beene brought vp in the Academies of the Grecian Philosophers, and (as it is in prouerbe) in the Peripa∣teticke schooles. But since you will so faine knowe the exposition of it, I will shew it you written with his owne hand, that made the verses, who at my request did it, and I carrie it alwaies about me, bicause I like it well. And heere it is. But will you heare me reade it vnto you, or reade it your selfe? Thou hast wisely asked me this question (said Lord Felix) for of this point I haue seene diuers good conceites, and from whence the cause proceedes I knowe not, but let it goe: For of conceites and opinions (they say) there is no disputing. But I take more pleasure to reade it my selfe, to stay and studie vpon that which likes me best, and to vnderstand it the better. Read it therefore aloude (said Placindus) that euerie one may vnderstand it,


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