The Entertainment of Queen Elizabeth at Elvetham

anonymous: Honorable Entertainement at Elvetham, Newly Corrected
anonymous: Honorable Entertainement at Elvetham


pp 1–30

The Proeme.

BEfore I declare the iuste time or manner of her Maiesties arriuall and entertainment at Eluetham, it is needfull (for the Readers better vnderstanding of euerie part & proces in my Discourse) that I set downe as well the conueniencie of the place, as also the suffising, by art and labour, of what the place in it selfe could not affoord on the sodain, for receipt of so great a Maiestie, and so honourable a traine.

Eluetham house being situate in a parke but of two miles in compasse or thereabouts, and of no great receipt, as beeing none of the Earles chiefe mansion houses; yet for the desire he had to shewe his vnfained loue, and loyal duetie to her most gracious Highnesse, purposing to visite him in this her late progresse, whereof he had to vnderstand by the ordinarie Gesse, as also by his honourable good friendes in the Court, neare to her Majestie: his Honor with all expedition set artificers a worke, to the number of two hundred or therabouts, many days before her Maiesties arriuall, to inlarge his house with newe roomes and offices. Whereof I omit to speake how manie were destined to the offices of | the Queenes houshold, & will onlie make mention of other such buildinges, as were raised on the sudden, fourteene score off from the house, on a hill side, within the said park, for entertainment of Nobles, Gentlemen, and others whatsoeuer.

First there was made a roome of Estate for the Nobles, and at the end thereof a withdrawing place for her maiestie. The outsides of the walles were al couered with boughes, and clusters of ripe Hasell nuttes, the inside with Arras, the roofe of the place with workes of Iuie leaues, the floore with sweete herbes, and greene rushes.

Neare adioining vnto this, were many other offices newlie conuerted; as namelie, Spicerie, Larderie, Chaundrie, Wine-seller, Ewerie, and Panterie: all which were tiled.

Not farre off was erected a large Hale for entertainment of Knights, Ladies, and Gentlewomen of chiefe account.

There was also a seuerall place for her Maiesties footemen, and their friends.

Then was there a long Bowre for her Maiesties Guard.

An other for other seruants of her Maiesties house.

An other for the Earles Steward, to keepe his table in.

An other for his Gentlemen that waited.

Most of these foresaid roomes were furnished with tables, and the tables carried three and twentie yardes in length.

Moreouer, on the same hill there was raysed a great common buttrey.|

A pitcher house.

A large pasterie, with fiue ouens new built, some of them fourteen foote deepe.

A great kitchen with foure ranges, and a boyling place for small boild meates.

An other kitchen with a very long range, for the waste, to serue all commers.

A boyling house, for the great boiler.

A roome for the scullerie.

An other roome for the Cookes lodgings.

Some of these were couered with canuas,
and other some with bordes.

Betweene the Earles house and the foresaide hill, where these roomes were raised, there had beene made in the bottome by handie labour, a goodlie ponde, cutte to the perfect figure of a halfe moone. In this pond were three notable grounds, wherehence to present her Maiestie with sportes, and pastimes. The first was a Ship Ile, of one hundred foote in length, and fortie foote broad: bearing three trees orderlie set for three mastes. The second was a Fort, twentie foote square euery way, and euery flanker arbored with willows. The third and last was a Snayl-mount, rising to foure circles of greene Priuie hedges, the whole in height twentie foote, and fourscore foote broad at the bottome. These three places were equallie distant from the sides of the ponde, and euerie one by a iust measured proportion distant from other, and from the endes of the ponde. In the said water were diuers boates prepared for Musicke; but especially there was a Pinnace, full furnished with mastes, yardes, | sailes, anchors, cables, and all other ordinarie tackling, and with iron peeces: and lastlie, with flagges, streamers, and pendants, to the number of twelue, all painted with diuers colours, and sundry deuises. To what vse these particulars serued, it shall euidentlie appeare by that which followeth. And therefore I am to requeste the gentle Reader, that when any of these places are brieflie specified in the sequele of this discourse, it will please him to haue reference to this fore- description; that, in auoiding reiterations, I may not seem to them obscure, whom I studie to please with my plainnesse. For Proeme this may suffise: now to the matter it selfe: that it may be vltimum in executione (to vse the old phrase) quod primum fuit in intentione, as is vsual to good carpenters, who intending to builde a house, yet first lay their foundation, & square many a post, & fasten manie a rafter, before the house bee set vp: what they first purposed, is last done. And thus much for excuse of a long foundation to a short building.


On the twentie day of September being Mundaie, the Earle of Hertford ioyfullie expecting her Majesties comming to Eluetham, to supper, as her Highnesse had promised: the same morning, about nine of the clock, when euerie other needful place or point of seruice, was established and set in order, | for so great an entertainment, called for, and drewe all his seruants into a chiefe thicket of the parke: where in fewe wordes, he put them in minde what quietnes, and what diligence, or other duetie, they were to vse at that present: that their seruice might first work her Maiesties content, and thereby his honor, and lastly their own credit, with the increase of his love and fauour toward them. This done, after dinner, with his Traine well mounted, to the number of two hundred and vpwardes, and most of them wearing chaines of golde about their neckes, he rode toward Odeham, and leauing his traine and companie orderlie placed, to attende her Maiesties comming out of Odeham Parke, three miles distant from Eluetham: himselfe wayted on her Maiestie from Odeham house.

As the Earle in this first action shewed himselfe duetifull, so her Maiestie was to him and his most gracious, as also in the sequel, between fiue & sixe of the clock, when her Highnes being most honorablie attended, entred into Eluetham parke: where (to her Maiesties great liking) were by estimat, neer tenne thousand people, from sundrie places, & was more then halfe way betweene the parke gate & the house, a Poet saluted her with a Latin Oration in Heroicall verse, I meane Veridicus vates, a Sooth-saying Poet, nothing inferior for trueth, & little for deliuerie of his minde, to an ordinarie Orator. This Poet was clad in greene, to signifie the ioye of his thoughts: at her entrance a Laurell garland on his head, to expresse that Apollo was patron of his studies: an Oliue branch in his hand, to declare what | continuall peace and plentie he did both wish and aboade her Maiestie: and lastly booted, to betoken that he was Vates cothurnatus, and not a loose or lowe creeping prophet, as Poets are interpreted by some idle or enuious ignorants.

This Poets boy offered him a cushion at his first kneeling to her Maiesty, but he refused it, saying as followeth.

The Poet to his boy offering him
a Cushion.

Non iam puluillis opus est, sed corde sereno:

Nam plusquám solitis istic aduoluimur aris.

Nvper ad Aönium flexo dum poplite fontem

Indulsi placido, Phoebi sub pectine, somno,

Veridicos inter vates, quos Entheus ardor

Possidet, & virtus nullis offusa lituris,

Talia securo cantabant carmina Musæ.

Aspicis insueto tingentem lumine coelum

Anglorum nostro maiorem nomine Nympham

Os, humerósque Deæ similem, dum tuta Semeri

Tecta petit, qualis dilecta Philæmonis olim

Cannea cœlicolûm subijt magalia rector?

Olli tu blandas humili dic ore salutes:

Nos dabimus numeros, numeros dabit ipsus Apollo|

Sed metues Tantæ summas attingere laudes:

Nam specie Solem, Superos virtutibus æquans,

Maiestate locum, sacrisque timoribus implet.

Doctior est nobis, & nobis præsidet vna:

Ditior est Ponto, Pontum quoque temperat vna:

Pulchrior est nymphis, et nymphis imperat vna

Dignior est Diuis, et Diuos allicit vna.

En supplex adsum, Musarum numine ductus,

Et meritis (Augusta) tuis, ô dulcis Elisa,

Fronte serenata modicum dignare poëtam,

Né mea vernantem deponant tempora laurum,

Et miser in cantu moriar. Se námque Semeri

Obsequiosa meis condit persona sub vmbris:

Qui fert ore preces, oculo fœcundat oliuam;

Officium precibus, pacem designat oliua;

Affectum docet officijs, et pace quietem;

Mentes affectu mulcebit, membra quiete.

Hi mores, hæc veratui persona Semeri,

Cui lætum sine te nihil, illætabile tecum

Est nihil. En rident ad vestros omnia vultus

Suauiter, immensum donec fulgoribus orbem

Elisabetha nouis imples: nox inuidet vna:

Astra sed inuidiæ tollunt mala signa tenebras.

Cætera, qua possunt, sacræ gratantur Elisæ

Lætitia, promptósque ferunt in gaudia vultus.

Limulus insultat per pictos hoedus agellos

Passibus obtortis; et toruum bucula taurum|

Blanda petit; tremulus turgescit frondibus arbos,

Graminibus pratum, generosa pampinus vua:

Et tenui latices in arena dulce susurrant,

In suetúmque melos: Te, te dulcissima Princeps,

Terra, polus, fluuij, plantæ, pecudésque salutant:

Dúmque tuam cupide mirantur singula formam,

Infixis hærent oculis, nequeuntque tuendo

Expleri; solitis sed nunc liberrima curis,

In placidos abeunt animos: non semina vermes,

Non cerui metuunt casses, non herba calorem,

Non viscum volucres, non fruges grandinis ictum.

Oistos (Augusta) dies, ô profer in annos;

Et lustrum ex annis, è lustris sæcula surgant;

E sæclis æuum, nullo numerabile motu:

Vt nostros dudum quotquot risere dolores,

Gaudia iam numerent, intabescántque videndo.

En, iter obiecto quà clauserat obice Liuor,

Virtutis famulæ Charites, castríque superni

Custodes Horæ, blandissima numina, iunctim

Iam tollunt remoras, vt arenam floribus ornent.

Ergò age, supplicibus succede penatibus hospes

Et nutu moderare tuo: Tibi singula parent,

Et nisi parêrent Tibi singula, tota perirent.

Dicite Iö Paean, et Iö ter dicite Pæan,

Spargite flore vias, & mollem cantibus auram.

Because all our Countriemen are not Latinistes, I thinke it not amisse to set this downe in English, | that all may bee indifferentlie partakers of the Poets meaning.

The Poets speech to his boy of-
fering him a Cushion

Now let us vse no Cushions, but faire hearts:
For now we kneel to more then vsuall Saints.

The Poets speech to her Maiestie.

While at the fountaine of the sacred hill,

Vnder Apollos lute I sweetlie slept,

Mongst Prophets full possest with holy furie,

And with true vertue, void of all disdaine:

The Muses song, and wak'd me with these wordes.

Seest thou that English Nimph, in face and shape

Resembling some great Goddesse, and whose beames

Doe sprinkle heau'n with vnacquainted light,

Whilest shee doeth visite Semers fraudlesse house,

As Iupiter did honour with his presence

The poore thatcht cottage, where Philæmon dwelt?

See thou salute her with an humble voice;

Phoebus, and we, will let thee lack no verses.

But dare not once aspire to touch her praise,

Who, like the Sunne for shew, to Gods for vertue,

Filles all with Maiestie, and holy feare.

More learned then our selues, shee ruleth vs:

More rich then seas, she doth commaund the seas:

More fair then Nimphs, she governs all the Nimphs

More worthie then the Gods, she wins the Gods.|

Behold (Augusta) thy poore suppliant

Is here, at their desire, but thy desert.

O sweet Elisa, grace me with a looke,

Or from my browes this Lawrell wreath will fall,

And I vnhappie, die amidst my song.

Vnder my person Semer hides himselfe,

His mouth yeeldes pray'rs, his eye the Oliue branch;

His praiers betoken duetie, th' Olive peace;

His duetie argues loue, his peace faire rest;

His loue will smooth your minde, faire rest your bodie.

This is your Semers heart and qualitie:

To whom all things are ioyes while thou art present,

To whom nothing is pleasing in thine absence.

Behold, on thee how each thing sweetlie smiles,

To see thy brightnes glad our hemisphere:

Night only enuies: whom faire starres doe crosse.

All other creatures striue to shew their ioyes.

The crooked-winding Kid trips ore the lawnes;

The milke-white Heafer wantons with the Bull;

The trees shew pleasure with the quiuering leaues,

The medow with new grasse; the vine with grapes,

The running brookes with sweet and siluer sound.

Thee, thee (Sweet Princes), heau'n, & earth, & fluds,

And plants, and beasts, salute with one accord:

And while they gaze on thy perfections,

Their eyes desire is neuer satisfied.

Thy presence frees each thing, that liu'd in doubt:

No seedes now feare the biting of the worme;

Nor deere the toyles; nor grasse the parching heate;

Nor birdes the snare; nor corne the storme of haile.

O Empresse, ô draw foorth these daies to yeeres,

Yeeres to an age, ages to æternitie:|

That such as lately ioyde to see our sorrowes,

May sorrow now, to see our perfect ioyes.

Behold where all the Graces, Vertues maides,

And light-foote Howers, the guardians of heau'ns gate,

With ioyned forces doe remoue those blocks,

Which Enuie layd in Maiesties highway.

Come, therefore, come vnder our humble roofe,

And with a beck commaund what it containes:

For all is thine, each part obeys thy will;

Did not each part obey, the whole should pearish.

Sing songs, faire Nymphs, sing sweet triumphal songs,

Fill waies with flowers, and th'ayr with harmonie.

While the Poet was pronouncing this oration, sixe Virgins were behinde him, busilie remoouing blockes out of hir maiesties way; which blockes were supposed to be laid there by the person of Enuie, whose condition is, to enuy at euery good thing, but speciallie to malice the proceedings of Vertue, and the glorie of true maiesty. Three of these Virgins represented the three Graces, and the other three, the Howres, which by the Poets are fained to be the guardians of heauen gates. They were all attired in gowns of taffata sarcenet of diuers colours, with flowrie garlands on their heads, & baskets full of sweet hearbs & flowers vpon their armes. When the Poets speech was happily ended, and in a scroul deliuered to her maiestie (for such was her gratious acceptance, that shee deined to receiue it with hir owne hand) then these sixe Virgins, after perfourmance of their humble reuerence to hir highnesse, walked on before hir towards the house, strewing | the way with flowers, and singing a sweet song of six partes to this dittie, which followeth.

The song sung by the Graces and the Howres at hir maiesties first arriuall.

VVIth fragrant flowers we strew the way,

and make this our chiefe holliday:

Although this clime were blest of yore,

yet neuer was it proud before.

O beauteous Queene of second Troy,

Accept of our vnfained ioy.

Now ayer is sweeter then the balme,

and Satyres sing about the palme:

Now earth in colours newly dight,

yeeldes perfect signe of hir delight

O beauteous Quene &c.

Now birdes record sweete harmonie,

and trees doe whisper melodie:

Now euery thing that nature breedes,

doth decke it selfe in pleasant weedes.

O beauteous Queene &c.

This song ended with hir Maiesties entrance into the house: and hir maiesty alighted from horsbacke at the hall dore, the Countesse of Hertford, accompanied with diuers honourable Ladies and Gentlewoemn, moste humbly on hir knees welcomed hir highesse to that place: who most graciously imbracing hir, tooke hir vp, and kissed hir, vsing manie comfortable a d princely speeches, as wel to hir, as to the Earle of Hertford standing hard by, to the great reioysing of manies beholders. And | after hir maiesties entrance into the house, where she had not rested hir a quarter of an houre: but from the Snail-mount, & the Ship-Ile in the Pond (both being neere vnder the prospect of hir Gallerie window) there was a long volley of chambers, and two brasse peeces discharged. After this supper was serued in, first to hir maiestie, and then to the Nobles and others. Were it not that I would not seeme to flatter the honourable minded Earle: or, but that I feare to displease him, who rather desired to expres his loyall dutie in his liberall bountie, then to heare of it againe, I could heere willingly particulate the store of his cheare and prouision, as likewise the carefull and kinde diligence of his seruants, expressed in their quiet seruice to hir maiestie, and the Nobilitie, and by their louing entertainment to all other, frends, or strangers. But I leaue the bountie of the one, and the industrie of the others, to the iust report of such as beheld, or tasted the plentifull abundance of that time and place.

After supper was ended, her Maiestie gratiously admitted vnto her presence a notable consort of six Musitions, which the Earle of Hertford had prouided to entertaine hir maiestie withal, at hir good wil and pleasure, and when it should seeme good to hir highnesse. Their musicke so highly pleased hir, that in grace and fauour therof, she gaue a newe name vnto one of their Pauans, made long since by maister Thomas Morley, then Organist of Pauls Church.

These are the chiefe pointes, which I noted in the first daies entertainment. Now therefore it followeth, that I proceed to the second.|


ON the next day following, being Tuesday, and S. Mathewes festiuall, there was in the morning presented to hir maiesty a faire and rich gift from the Countesse of Hertford which greatly pleased and contented hir highnesse. The forenoone was so wet and stormie, that nothing of pleasure could be presented hir maiesty. Yet it held vp a litle before dinner time, and all the day after: where otherwise faire sportes would haue beene buried in foule weather.

This day hir maiestie dined, with hir Nobles about hir, in the room of Estate, new builded on the hill side, aboue the Pondes head. There sate below hir, many Lords, Ladies, and Knightes. And as hir maiestie sate at dinner, there was a dore set wide open for ayer, whereby the people might (to their great comfort) behold hir Maiesties presence in open view. The manner of seruice, and abundance of dainties, I omit vpon iust consideration, as also the ordinance discharged in the beginning of dinner, and variety of consorted musick al dinner time.

Presently after dinner, the Earle of Hertford caused a large Canapie of Estate to bee set at the pondes head, for hir maiesty to sit vnder, & to view some sportes prepared in the water. The Canapie was of greene satten, lined with greene taffata sarcenet; euerie seame couered with a broad siluer lace; valenced about, and fringed with greene silke and | siluer, more then a handbredth in depth; supported with four siluered pillers moueable; & dekt aboue head with foure white plumes, spangled with siluer. This Canapie being vpheld by foure worthie Knightes, (Sir Henrie Greie, Sir Walter Hungerford, Sir Iames Maruin, and Sir George Caro,), and tapestry spred all about the pondes head, hir maiestie about four of the clocke came, and sate vnder it, to expect the issue of some deuise, being aduertised that there was some such thing towards.

At the further end of the ponde, there was a Bower, close built to the brinke therof; out of which there went a pompous araie of sea- persons, which waded brest-high, or swam, till they approached neere the seate of hir maiestie. Nereus, the prophet of the sea, attired in redde silke, & hauing a fower cornerd-cappe on his curld-head, did swimme before the rest, as their pastor and guide. After him came fiue Tritons brest-high in the water, all with grisly heades, and beards of diuers colours and fashions, and all fiue cheerefully sounding their trumpets. After them went two other gods of the Sea, Neptune & Oceanus, and after them, Phorcus and Glaucus, leading betweene them that Pinnace, whereof I spake in the beginning of this Treatise.

In the pinnace were three Virgines, which with their Cornets played Scottish Gigges, made three parts in one. There was also in the saide pinnace an other nymph of the sea, named Neæra, the olde supposed loue of Syluanus, a God of the woods. Neere to hir were placed three excellent voices, to sing to one lute, & in two other boats hard by, other lutes | and voices to answere by maner of Eccho: after the pinnace, and two other boats, which were drawne after it by other Sea- gods, the rest of the traine followed brest-high in the water, all attired in ouglie marine suites, and euerie one armed with a huge woodden squirt in his hand: to what end it shal appeare hereafter. In their marching towardes the pond, all along the middle of the current, the Tritons sounded one halfe of the way, and then they ceasing, the Cornets plaid their Scottish gigs. The melodie was sweet, and the shew stately.

By the way it is needful to touch heere manie things abruptly, for the better vnderstanding of that which followeth.

First, that in the Pinnace are two Iewelles to be presented to hir maiesty: the one by Nereus, the other by Neæra.

Secondly, that the Fort in the pond is round, enuironed with armed men.

Thirdly, that the Snaile-mount nowe resembleth a monster, having hornes of bul-rushes full of wild- fire, continually burning.

And lastly, that the God Siluanus lieth with his traine not farre off in the woodes, and will shortly salute hir maiestie, and present hir with a holly scutchion, wherein Apollo had long since written hir praises.

All this remembred and considered, I nowe returne to the Sea-gods, who hauing vnder the conduct of Nereus brought the Pinnace neere before hir maiesty, Nereus made his oration, as followeth; but before he began, hee made a priuie signe vnto | one of his traine, which was gotten vp into the Ship-Ile, directly before hir maiestie, and hee presently did cast himselfe downe, doing a summer. sawt from the Ile into the water, and then swamme to his companie.

The Oration of Nereus to hir Maiestie.

FAire Cinthia the wide Oceans Empresse,

I waterie Nereus houered on the coast

To greete your maiestie with this my traine

Of dancing Tritons, and shrill singing Nimps.

But all in vaine: Elisa was not there;

For which our Neptune grieu'd, and blam'd the star

Whose thwarting influence dasht our longing hope,

Therefore impatient, that this worthlesse earth

Should beare your Highnesse weight, and we Sea-gods

(Whose iealous waues haue swallowd vp your foes,

And to your Realme are walles impregnable)

With such large favour seldome time are grac'd,

I from the deepes haue drawne this winding flud,

Whose cressent forme figures the rich increase

Of all that sweet Elisa holdeth deare.

And with me came gold brested India,

Who daunted at your sight, leapt to the shore,

And sprinckling endlesse treasure on this Ile,

Left me this Iewell to present your Grace,

For him, that vnder you doth hold this place.

See where hir shippe remaines, whose silkewouen tackling

Is turnd to twigs, and threefold mast to trees,

Receiuing life from verdure of your lookes;

(For what cannot your gracious looks effect?)

You vglie monster creeping from the South,|

To spoile these blessed fields of Albion,

By selfe-same beams is chang'd into a Snaile,

Whose bul-rush-hornes are not of force to hurt.

As this Snaile is, so be thine enemies,

And neuer yet did Nereus wish in vaine.

That Fort did Neptune raise for your defence;

And in this Barke, which Gods hale neere the shore,

White-footed Thetis sends her Musick-maides,

To please Elisæs eares with harmonie.

Heare them, fair Queene: and when their Musick ends,

My Triton shall awake the Syluane Gods,

To doe their homage to your Majestie.

This Oration being deliuered, and withall the present whereof hee spake, which was hidden in a purse of greene rushes, cunningly woauen together: immediatly the three voices in the Pinnace sung a song to the Lute with excellent diuisions, and the end of every verse was replied by Lutes and voices in the other boate somewhat a farre off, as if they had beene Ecchoes.

The song presented by Nereus on the water, sung dialogue
wise, euerie fourth verse answered with two Ecchoes.

Dem. HOw haps it now, when Prime is done,

another Spring-time is begun?

Resp. Our happie Soile is ouerrunne,

with beautie of a second sunne./

Eccho. a second sunne./

Dem. What heauenlie lampe with holie light,

doeth so increase our Climes delight?

Resp. A lampe whose beames are euer bright

and neuer feares approching night.

Eccho. approching night.|

Dem. Why sing we not eternall praise,

to that faire shine of lasting daies?

Resp. He shames himselfe that once assaies

to fould such wonder in sweete laies.

Eccho. in sweet laies.

Dem. O yet deuoid of enuious blame,

thou maist vnfold hir sacred name.

Resp. Tis dread Eliza that faire Dame,

who filles the golden Trump of fame.

Eccho. Trump of fame.

Dem. O neuer may so sweete a Queene,

see dismall daies or deadly teene.

Resp. Graunt heauens hir daies may stil be greene,

for like to hir was neuer seene.

Eccho. Was neuer seene.

This song being ended, Nereus commanded the five Tritons to sound. Then came Siluanus with his attendants from the wood: himselfe attired from the midle downwards to the knee, in kids skinnes, with the haire on, his legges, body and face naked, but died ouer with saffron, and his head hooded with a goates skinne, and two little hornes ouer his forehead, bearing in his right hand an Oliue tree, & in his left a scutchion, whereof I spake somewhat before. His followers were all couered with Iuy leaues, and bare in their hands bowes made like dartes. At their approch neere hir maiestie, Syluanus spake as followeth, and deliuered vp his scutchion, ingrauen with golden characters, Nereus and his traine still continuing neere hir Highnesse.|

The Oration of Siluanus.

Siluanus comes from out the leauie groues,

To honor her whom all the world adores,

Faire Cinthia, whom no sooner Nature fram'd,

And deckt with Fortunes, & with Vertues dower,

But straight admiring what hir skill had wrought,

She brake the mould: that neuer sun might see

The like to Albions Queene for excellence.

Twas not the Tritons ayr-enforsing shell,

As they perhaps would proudly make their vaunt,

But those faire beames, that shoote from Maiestie,

Which drew our eies to wonder at thy worth.

That worth breedes wonder; wonder holy feare;

And holy feare unfained reuerence.

Amongest the wanton daies of golden age,

Apollo playing in our pleasant shades,

And printing Oracles in euerie leafe,

Let fall this sacred scutchion from his brest,

Wherein is writ, Detur dignissimæ.

O therfore hold, what heauen hath made thy right

I but in duetie yeeld desert hir due.


But see Siluanus, where thy loue doth sit,


My sweet Neæra was hir care so neere?

O set my heartes delight vpon this banke,

That in compassion of old sufferance,

She may relent in sight of Beauties Quene.


On this condition shall she come on shoare,

That with thy hand thou plight a solemne vow,|

Not to prophane hir vndefiled state.


Here, take my hand, and therewithall I vowe,


That water will extinguish wanton fire.

Nereus, in pronouncing this last line, did plucke Siluanus ouer head and eares into the water, where all the Sea-gods laughing, did insult ouer him. In the meane while her Maiestie perused the verses written in the scutchion, which were these.

Aönijs prior, & Diuis es pulchrior alti
Equoris, ac Nymphis es prior Idalijs.
Idalijs prior es Nymphis, ac æquoris alti
Pulchrior & Diuis, & prior Aönijs.

Ouer these verses was this poesie written. Detur dignissimæ.

After that the sea-gods had sufficiently duckt Siluanus, they suffered him to creep to the land, where he no sooner set footing, but crying Reuenge, revenge, hee and his begun a skirmish with those of the water, the one side throwing their darts, and the other vsing their squirts, and the Tritons sounding a point of warre. At the last Nereus parted the fraie with a line or two, grounded on the excellence of hir maiesties presence, as being a friend alwaies to peace, and enemie to warre. Then Siluanus, being so vgly, and running toward the Bower at the ende of the pond, affrighted a number of the countrey people, that they ran from him for feare, & thereby moued great laughter. His followers retired to the woods, and Neæra his faire loue in the Pinnace, presenting | her Maiesty a Sea Iewel, bearing the forme of a fan, spake vnto her as followeth.

The oration of faire Neæra.

When Neptune late bestowed on me this Barke,

And sent by me this present to your Grace:

Thus Nereus song, who neuer sings but trueth.

Thine eyes (Neæra) shall in time behold

A sea-borne Queene, worthie to gouerne Kings,

On her depends the fortune of thy boate,

If she but name it with a blisfull word.

And view it with her life-inspiring beames.

Her beames yeeld gentle influence, like faire starres,

Her siluer sounding word is prophesie.

Speake sacred Sybill, geue some prosperous name,

That it may dare attempt a golden fleece,

Or diue for pearles, and lay them in thy lap.

For winde and waues, and all the world besides,

Will make her way whom thou shalt doome to blisse,

For what is Sybils speech, but Oracle?

Here her maiestie named the Pinnace the Bon-
adventure, and Neæra went on with her speech,
as followeth.

Now Neæraes Barke is fortunate,

And in thy seruice shall imploy her sayle,

And often make returne to thy auaile.

O liue in endlesse ioy, with glorious fame,

Sound Trumpets, sound, in honor of her name.

Then did Nereus retire back to his Bower, with all his traine following him, in selfesame order as they came foorth before, the Tritons sounding their Trumpets one halfe of the way, and the Cornets playing the other halfe. And here ended the | second daies pastime; to the so great liking of hir Maiestie, that hir gracious approbation thereof, was to the Actors more then a double reward: and yet withall, hir Highnesse bestowed a largesse vppon them the next daie after, before she departed.


ON Wednesday morning, about nine of the clock, as hIr Maiestie opened a Casement of hir Gallerie window, ther were three excellent Musitians, who being disguised in ancient Countrey attire, did greet her with a pleasant song of Coridon and Phillida, made in three partes of purpose. The song, as well for the worth of the dittie, as for the aptnesse of the note thereto applied, it pleased hir Highnesse, after it had beene once sung, to commaund it again, and highly to grace it with her cheerefull acceptance, and commendation.

The three mens song sung the third morning, vnder hir
Maiesties Gallerie window.

IN the merrie moneth of May,

In a morne by breake of day,

Foorth I walked to the wood side,

Where as May was in their pride.|

There I spied all alone

Phyllida and Corydon.

Much good sport there was got wot,

He would loue, and she would not

She said, neuer man was true:

He said, none was false to you.

He said, he had loued hir long:

She said, loue should haue no wrong.

Corydon would kisse hir then:

She said, maides must kisse no men,

Till they did for good and all.

Then she made the shepheard call

All the world to witnesse trueth;

Neuer lov'd so true a youth.

Thus with manie a prettie oath,

Yea and nay, faith and troath,

Such as silly shepheards vse,

When they will not loue abuse;

Loue that had beene long deluded:

Was with kisses sweet concluded:

And Phyllida with garments gay,

Was made the Ladie of the May.

The same day after dinner, about three of the clocke, tenne of the Earle of Hertfords seruants, all Somersetshire men, in a square greene court, before hir Maiesties windowe, did lay lines, squaring out the forme of a Tennis-court, and making a crosseline in the midle. In this square they (being stript out of their dublets) plaied fiue to fiue with the hand-ball, at bord and cord (as they tearme it) to so great liking of hir Highnesse, that she | graciously deined to behold their pastime more then an houre and an halfe.

After supper there were two delights presented vnto hir maiestie: curious fire-workes; and a sumptuous banket. The first from the three Ilands in the pond: the second, in a low Gallerie in hir maiesties priuie Garden. But I will first briefly speake of the fire-workes.

First, there was a peale of an hundred chambers discharged from the Snaile-mount: in counter whereof, a like peale was discharged from the Ship-Ile, and some great ordinance withall. Then was there a castle of fire-works of all sorts, which plaied in the Fort. Answerable to that, there was in the Snaile-mount a Globe of all maner of fire-workes, as big as a barrell. When these were spent on either side, there were manie running rockets vpon lines which past betweene the Snaile-mount, and the castle in the Fort. On either side were many fire-wheeles, pikes of pleasure, and balles of wild-fire, which burned in the water.

During the time of these fireworks in the water, there was a banket serued al in siluer and glasse, into the lowe Gallerie in the Garden, from a hill side foureteene score off, by two hundred of my Lord of Hertfordes Gentlemen, euerie one carrying so manie dishes, that the whole number amounted to a thousand: and there were to light them in their way, an hundred torch-bearers.|


ON Thursday morning, hir Maiestie was no sooner readie, and at hir Gallerie window, looking into the Garden, butthere began three Cornets to play certain fantastike dances, at the measure whereof the Fayerie Queene came into the Garden, dancing with hir maides about hir. She brought with hir a garland made in forme of an imperiall crown, which in the sight of hir maiestie, she fixed vpon a siluered staffe, and sticking the staffe into the ground, spake as followeth.

The speech of the Fairy Queene
to hir Maiestie.

I That abide in places vnder ground,

Aureola, the Queene of Fairy land,

That euerie night in rings of painted flowers

Turne round, and carroll out Elisaes name:

Hearing that Nereus and the Syluane Gods

Haue lately welcomde your Imperiall Grace,

Opend the earth with this enchanting wande,

To doe my duetie to your Maiestie.

And humblie to salute you with this Chaplet,

Geuen me by Auberon, the Fairy King.

Bright-shining Phœbe, that in humane shape,

Hid'st heauens perfection, vouchsafe t'accept it:|

And I Aureola, belou'd in heauen,

(For amarous starres fall nightly in my lappe)

Will cause that heauens enlarge thy goulden daies,

And cut them short, that enuie at thy praise.

After this speech, the Fairy Queene and hir maids danced about the Garden, singing a song of sixe partes, with the musicke of an exquisite consorte, wherein was the Lute, Bandora, Base-violl, Cittern, Treble-viol, and Flute, & this was the Fairies song.

The Queene of Fairies song, dansed and sung
before hir Maiestie, the morning be-
fore she went.

ELisa is the fayrest Queene,

That euer trode vpon this Greene.

Elisaes eyes are blessed starres,

Inducing peace, subduing warres.

Elisaes hand is christall bright:

hir wordes are balme, hir lookes are light.

Elisaes brest is that faire hill,

where vertue dwels, and sacred skill.

O blessed bee ech day and hower,

where sweete Elisa buildes hir Bower.

This spectacle and Musicke so delighted hir Maiestie, that she commanded to heare it sung and to be danced three times ouer, and called for diuers Lords and Ladies to behold it: and then dismist the actors with thankes, and with a gracious larges, which of hir exceeding goodnesse she bestowed vppon them.|

Within an houre after, hir Maiestie departed, with hir Nobles, from Eluetham. On the one side of hir way as she past through the Parke, there was placed sitting on the Pond side, Nereus and all the Sea-gods in their former attire: on hir left hand, Syluanus and his companie: in the way before hir, the three Graces, and the three Howres: al of them on euerie side wringing their handes, and shewing signe of sorow for hir departure. While she beheld this dum shew, the Poet made hir a short Oration, as followeth.

The Poets speech at hir Maiesties departure, he
being attired as at the first, sauing that his cloake
was now black, and his garland mixed
with vgli branches, to signifie sorrow.

O See, sweete Cynthia, how the watery Gods,

Which ioy'd of late to view thy glorious beames,

At this retire doe waile, and wring their hands,

Distilling from their eies salt showers of teares;

To bring in Winter with their wet lament:

For how can Summer stay, when Sunne departs?

See where Syluanus sits, and sadly mournes,

To thinke that Autumn with his withered winges,

Will bring in tempest when the beames are hence:

For how can Summer stay when sunne departes?

See where those Graces, & those Howers of heauen,

VVhich at thy comming sung triumphall songs,

And smooth'd the way, and strewd it with sweet flowers;

Now, if they durst, would stop it with greene bowes,

Least by thine absence the yeares pride decay:

For how can Summer stay when sunne departs?|

Leaves fall, grasse dies, beasts of the wood hang head,

Birdes cease to sing, and euery creature wayles,

To see the season alter with this change:

For how can Summer stay when sunne departs?

O, eyther stay, or soone returne againe,

For Summers parting is the Countries paine.

Then Nereus approching from the ende of the Pond, to hir Maiesties Coach, on his knees thanked hir Highnesse for hir late largesse, saying as followeth.

THankes gracious Goddesse for thy bounteous largesse,
VVhose worth, although it yeelds vs sweet Content,
Yet thy depart giues vs a greater sorrow.

After this, as hir Maiestie passed through the Park gate, there was a consort of Musitions hidden in a Bower, to whose playing this dittie of Come againe was sung, with excellent diuision by two, that were cunning.

The song sung at the gate, when hir Maie-

COme againe faire Natures Treasure,

VVhose lookes yeeld ioyes exceeding measure.

Come againe worlds Starre-bright eye,

VVhose presence bewtifies the skie.

Come againe worlds chiefe Delight,

VVhose absence makes eternall Night.


Come againe sweete liuely Sunne,

When thou art gone our ioyes are done.

Hir Maiestie was so highly pleased with this and
the rest, that she openly said to the Earle of Hert-
, that the beginning, processe, and end of this
his entertainment, was so honourable, that shee
would not forget the same. And many, and most
happie yeares may hir gratious Maiestie conti-
nue, to fauour and foster him, and all others
which do truely loue and
honor hir.


  • Marginalia
    • It was a most extreame rain and yet it pleased hir Maiestie with great patience to behold and heare the whole action.
    • As this song was sung, hir Maiestie notwithstanding the great raine, staied his Coach. and pulled off hir mask giuing great thanks.
  • Footnotes
    • BEfore: B rendered as large ornamental woodcut six lines high
    • Gesse: ie, 'jest' rather than 'guess,' as this word has been glossed by some editors; Davies identifies the 'ordinarie Gesse' as an 'itinerary, drawn up by the lord chamberlain, listing the places at which the Queen intended to reside during her progress' ('Queen's Entertainment,' p 570)
    • vltimum … executione: 'last in execution'
    • quod … intentione: 'that was first in intention'
    • On: O rendered as large ornamental woodcut six lines high
    • The Poet … aris: the four centred lines are enclosed within a rectangular border of leaves, fish, and other ornaments; the first two lines are in the same italic typeface as the poem, and the last two lines are in a smaller roman typeface
    • The … Saints.: the four centred lines are enclosed within a rectangular border the same size as the one above but composed only of leaves and flowers; the first two lines are in the same italic typeface as the poem, and the last two lines are in a smaller roman typeface
    • a d: for and
    • THE … EN-TERTAINMENT: horizontal, braided line spans the top of this page, indicating a section break from the description of the first day's entertainment
    • ON: O rendered as large ornamental woodcut 3 lines high
    • Sir Henrie Greie: Sir Henry Grey (later first Baron Grey of Groby); the progress had previously visited Grey's father-in-law, Anthony Browne, Viscount Montagu, at his house at Cowdray, Sussex.
    • Sir Walter Hungerford: Sir Walter Hungerford had an estate at Heytesbury, Wiltshire, near Warminster
    • Sir Iames Maruin: Sir James Mervyn had an estate at Fonthill Gifford, Wiltshire, 15 miles west of Salisbury
    • Sir George Caro: Sir George Carey had been MP for Hampshire in 1584, 1586, and 1589 and captain of the Isle of Wight since 1583
    • The song … Ecchoes: the second line is in a much smaller font than the first line
    • Detur dignissimæ: 'Let it be given to her who is most worthy'
    • Aönijs … Aönijs: 'You are superior to the Muses and more beautiful/ than the goddesses of the deep sea,/ and you are superior to the Idalian nymphs./ You are superior to the Idalian nymphs and more beautiful than the goddesses of the deep sea and superior to the Muses'
    • Detur dignissimæ: 'Let it be given to her who is most worthy'
    • ON: O rendered as large ornamental woodcut 6 lines high
    • THE FOVRTH DAIES: in much larger type
    • ON: O rendered as large ornamental woodcut 6 lines high
    • butthere: for but there; no space between the words in print text
    • ELisa: E two lines high
    • O: two lines high
    • THankes: T two lines high
    • COme: C two lines high
  • Collation Notes
    • two hundred or therabouts] three hundred Q1
    • other offices newlie conuerted] offices new builded Q1
    • Gentlewomen] Gentlemen Q1
    • seruants] Officers Q1
    • house] followed in Q1 by An other to entertaine all commers, suiters, and such like.
    • the Earles] my Lords Q1
    • the Earles] my Lords Q1
    • fortie] fourscore LPL, 40. Q1
    • arbored] ouergrown Q1
    • fourscore] fortie Q1
    • and from ... ponde] not in Q1
    • reiterations] tantilogies, or reiterations Q1, for tautologies etc
    • this] these Q1
    • twentie] twentith Q1
    • the Earle] my Lord Q1
    • the same ... clock] after dinner Q1
    • called ... seruants] about three of the clocke his Honor seing all his Retinevv vvell mounted and ready to attend his pleasure, hee drevv them secretly Q1
    • in fewe wordes] in fevv vvords, but vvell couched to the purpose Q1
    • after dinner ... Odeham house] my Lord with his traine (amounting to the number of 3. hundred, and most of them vvearing chaines of gold about their necks, and in their hats Yellow and Black feathers) met vvith her Maiestie tvvo miles off, then comming to Eluetham from her ovvne house of Odiham, four miles from thence. Q1
    • the Earle] my Lorde Q1
    • where ... sundrie places] not included in Q1
    • aris] following aris. in Q1 is the centred heading The Poets Speach to her Maiestie.
    • song] sung Q1
    • Whilest] While Q1
    • The song ... arriuall.] THe Dittie of the six Virgins song. Q1
    • Although] For though Q1
    • were] was Q1
    • neuer was it] was it neuer Q1
    • ayer is sweeter then the] th'ayre is sweeter then sweet Q1
    • sing] daunce Q1
    • in colours] with verdure Q1
    • yeeldes] Giues Q1
    • sweete] new Q1
    • whisper] whistle Q1
    • decke] clad Q1
    • And ... house] this passage is not in Q1; it may have been added to describe a significant moment in the queen's visit, but it is also possible that the compositor of Q1 skipped over this passage because of the repetition of the phrase, 'hir maiesties entrance into the house'
    • and ... peeces] not in Q1
    • the Earle] my Lord Q1
    • good] not in Q1
    • there ... highnesse] not in Q1
    • And as ... view] not in Q1
    • and variety ... dinner time] not in Q1
    • the Earle] my Lord Q1
    • worthie Knightes ... Sir George Caro,)] of my Lordes chiefe Gentlemen Q1
    • fower] not in Q1
    • and after ... Glaucus] not in Q1
    • of bul-rushes] not in Q1
    • You] Yon Q1; the Q1 reading appears to be the correct one here
    • The song ... Ecchoes] The Sea Nymphes Dittie Q1
    • it] that Q1
    • happie Soile] hemisphere Q1
    • What heauenlie lampe ... seene] What second Sun hath raies so bright,/ to cause this vnaquainted light?/ Tis faire Elisaes matchless Grace,/ Who with her beames doth blesse the place,/ Eccho. Doth blesse the place. Q1
    • approch] reproche Q1
    • care] eare Q1
    • a friend alwaies] alwaies friend Q1
    • Then Siluanus, ... followers] Then Syluanus with his followers Q1
    • song] sung Q1
    • Now] Q1 has a large 'I' to the left of the first two lines of this speech
    • The three ... window.] The Plovvmans Song. Q1
    • Foorth ... to] Forth I walked by Q1
    • their] his Q1
    • Much ... sport] Much adoe Q1
    • got] for God, Q1 reading
    • world] heauens Q1
    • so true a] a truer Q1
    • faith] and faith Q1
    • that] , which Q1
    • garments] garlands Q1
    • the Earle] my Lorde Q1
    • lay] hang vp Q1
    • an] a Q1
    • siluer and glasse] glasse and siluer Q1
    • an] a Q1
    • which in] within Q1
    • siluered] siluer Q1
    • Garden] garland Q1
    • The Queene ... went.] not in Q1
    • commanded to heare ... behold it] desired to see and hear it twise ouer Q1
    • It ... action.] marginale not in Q1
    • he being ... signifie sorrow] not in Q1; the last line of this title is in a much smaller typeface than the preceding lines.
    • the] thy Q1
    • Then Nereus ... sorrow.] not in Q1
    • As this song ... great thanks.] not in Q1
    • The song ... departed.] not in Q1
    • COme] Q1 has O come at the beginning of this stanza, and each succeeding stanza
    • bewtifies] doth adorne Q1
    • worlds] heau'ns Q1
    • VVhose] Thine Q1
    • Come againe worlds Starre-bright ... Night.] the second and third stanzas are in reverse order in Q1
    • liuely] beauties Q1
    • said] protested Q1
    • the Earle] my Lord Q1
    • that shee ... same] as hereafter hee should finde the rewarde thereof in her especiall favour. Q1
  • Glossed Terms
    • aboade v inf to presage, foretell; typically used to denote an ominous foretelling, but here used in a positive sense [OEDO abode v]
    • amarous adj amorous
    • bowe n bough
    • canapie n in phr canapie of estate a canopy in a design or colour representative of a particular household, title, etc [OEDO estate n 4.c]
    • grisly adj grizzly, grey
    • larges n largesse
    • nimp n nymph
    • summer sawt n phr somersault
  • Endnote

    The Seymour family was resident at Elvetham Hall.

    Q1 includes the following at the end of the description of the third day's entertainment:

    '...To satisfie the curious, I will here set downe some particulars in the banket.

    Her Maiesties Armes in sugar-worke.

    The severall Armes of all our Nobilitie in sugar-worke.

    Many men and women in sugar-worke, and some inforst by hand.

    Castles, Forts, Ordinance, Drummers, Trumpeters, and soldiors of all sorts in sugar-worke.

    Lions, Vnicorns, Beares, Horses, Camels, Buls, Rams, Dogges, Tygers, Elephants, Antelops, Dromedaries; Apes, and all other beasts in sugar- worke.

    Egles, Falcons, Cranes, Bustardes, Heronshawes, Bytters, Pheasants, Partridges, Quailes, Larkes, Sparrowes, Pigeons, Cockes, Oules, and all that flie, in sugar-worke.

    Snakes, adders, vipers, frogs, toades, and all kind of wormes, in sugar-worke.

    Mermaides, whales, dolphins, cungars, sturgions, pikes, carps, breams, and all sortes of fishes, in sugar-worke.

    All these were standing dishes of sugar-work. The selfe same deuices were also there all in flat-worke. Moreouer these particulars following, and many such like, were in flat sugar-worke, and sinamond.

    March-panes, grapes, oisters, muscles, cockles, periwinckles, crabs, lobsters.

    Apples, peares, and plums, of all sorts.

    Preserues, suckats, jellies, leaches, marmelats, pasts comfits, of all sorts.'

  • Document Description

    Record title: The Entertainment of Queen Elizabeth at Elvetham
    Author: anonymous
    Work title: Honorable Entertainement at Elvetham, Newly Corrected

    Queen Elizabeth visited Edward Seymour (1539–1621), 9th earl of Hertford, at Elvetham, Hampshire, from 20–3 September 1591, where she enjoyed elaborate pageantry prepared by the earl. The proem tells us that Elvetham was 'none of the Earles chiefe mansion houses,' so one may wonder why Hertford chose to entertain the queen there. His principal residence was Tottenham Lodge in Wiltshire, near Marlborough (Davies, 'Looking Again at Elvetham,' pp 211–12), but Elizabeth's 1591 progress was confined to Surrey, Sussex, and Hampshire. In Hampshire it reached only as far west as Southampton and Winchester before curving back east toward Basingstoke, Odiham, and Elvetham, and then returning to the London area by early October. The queen visited, among others, Sir William More (1520–1600) at Loseley on 5–9 August; Anthony Browne (1528–92), 1st Viscount Montagu, at Cowdray – where another elaborate entertainment had been performed on 14–20 August; Henry Wriothesley (1573–1624), 4th earl of Southampton, at Titchfield on 2–3 September; Sir Henry Wallop (1568–1642) at Farleigh Wallop on 12–13 September; William Paulet (1532–98), 3rd marquess of Winchester, at Basing on 13–16 September; and Edward More (c 1555–1623) at Odiham on 19–20 September (Cameron Louis (ed), Sussex, REED (Toronto and Buffalo, 2000), 188–95; Chambers, Elizabethan Stage, vol 4, pp 105–6). Odiham had long been a royal residence, so the fact that Hertford's small house and lands at Elvetham lay only four miles from Odiham meant Elvetham would have to serve if Hertford were going to have the chance to entertain the queen in 1591. Many of the two hundred artificers employed at Elvetham must have come from Tottenham, as did one Edmund Pike, who wrote the churchwardens of Great Bedwyn, Wiltshire, explaining that he could not meet with them on 25 August 1591, as he was aiding his master, the earl of Hertford, with his preparations 'agaynst her maiesties commynge to his Lordship howse at Elvetham' (Wiltshire and Swindon Archives: D5/28/6, f 133).

    A description of the pageantry at Elvetham was entered in the Stationer's Register on 1 October by the printer John Wolfe of London and issued as a quarto pamphlet: 'THE HONORABLE Entertainment gieuen to the Quenes Maiestie in Progresse, at Eluetham in Hampshire, by the right Honorable the Earle of Hertford.' No author is named on the title page, but the description of the events appears to have been written by a member of Hertford's household: he consistently refers to Hertford as 'my Lord' in the first printed version of the text (Q1; see below) and the substantive changes made in the later, corrected printing (Q2) reflect first-hand knowledge of the event. Some of the songs are known from other sources to have been written by Thomas Watson, while the Phyllida and Coridon song is known to be by Nicholas Breton. Earlier editors have offered a number of other names as authors of part or all of the text, but their arguments are highly speculative. Thomas Morley is credited in the text as composer of one of the pavanes performed on the first evening, and William Byrd is among those who may have contributed to the music (Davies, 'Queen's Entertainment at Elvetham,' pp 568–9).

    Four copies of the pamphlet have survived. Three copies are similar: BL: C.33.c.7.(9.), Cambridge University Library: Bb.11.50 (E), and Lambeth Palace Library: ZZ.1593.28.97. In his edition of the entertainment for the new edition of Nichols' Progresses, Davies designates these three copies as Q1 and details the minor differences between them ('Queen's Entertainment at Elvetham,' pp 563–4). The copy in the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle (RCIN 1024755) differs substantially from the other three, so Davies has designated it Q2. The differences suggest that most of Q1 was written before the events it describes, and it represents Hertford's plans for the queen's visit, although it does mention the rain on the second day that delayed and altered some of the planned entertainments. Q2 has been more heavily corrected to represent what actually happened, and adds marginal notes to the description of the fourth day that tell us that the queen displayed great patience in enduring more rain in order to witness the pageantry for her departure. Q2 also adds details in a number of places in the text, though it leaves out one extended description of the third day's banquet that appears in Q1 (which can be found here in the endnote). Q2 also includes a more elaborate version of the foldout illustration of the artificial lake setting for the entertainments than the ones included in the Cambridge and Lambeth copies of Q1.

    The edition of the Elvetham entertainment included by Nichols had many inaccuracies, as he originally based his text on Q1 and then created a composite version after he encountered Q2, which appears in the 1823 edition of Nichols' Progresses. Q2 then disappeared from scholarly view for two centuries, until Davies located it at Windsor. In the interim, scholars used Nichols' botched composite, or attempted to sort out what Q2 must have contained by comparing Nichols' version with one or more copies of Q1. Moreover, the illustration of the artificial lake and other set-pieces included by Nichols and frequently reproduced in theatre histories was not in fact the original foldout woodcut, but an eighteenth-century engraving that adds a conjectural lower section to the Q2 illustration (for a fuller analysis of earlier editions of the Elvetham entertainment, see Davies, 'Queen's Entertainment at Elvetham,' pp 562–95.) The edition included here takes Q2 as its copy text throughout, both because it has been corrected and because REED's emphasis is on what was performed, rather than what was originally written. Variant readings in Q1 are given in the textual notes; accidental variants of spelling, punctuation, and typography have been ignored.

    THE | HONORABLE | Entertainement geuen to the | Queenes Maiestie in Progresse, at Elue- | tham in Hampshire, by the right | Honorable the Earle | of Hertford. | 1591 | Newlie corrected, and amended. | [woodcut of a coat of arms, presumably royal or that of the earl, with the following motto: 'A.LAMY FIDELE . POVR .JAMAIS.' A unicorn and lion flank a shield divided into six sections. The shield is topped by a crown, and above that an armoured helm with a crown above that, both in front of a fleur-de-lis. This is not the coat of arms of the earl of Hertford, though it resembles that of Jane Seymour, which however lacks the motto and upper section.] | LONDON. | Printed by Iohn Wolfe, and are to bee | sold at the little Shop ouer against the great South | doore of Paules. 1591. Italics are used for the speeches and songs, though proper names within the speeches are often in normal type. Italics are also used in the descriptive text for Latin phrases and some classical names.

    Record title: The Entertainment of Queen Elizabeth at Elvetham
    Author: anonymous
    Work title: Honorable Entertainement at Elvetham

    THE | HONORABLE | Entertainement gieuen to the | Queenes Maiestie in Progresse, at Elue- | tham in Hampshire, by the right | Honorable the Earle | of Hertford. | 1591 | [woodcut of a coat of arms, presumably royal or that of the earl, with the following motto: 'A.LAMY FIDELE . POVR .JAMAIS.' A unicorn and lion flank a shield divided into six sections. The shield is topped by a crown, and above that an armoured helm with a crown above that, both in front of a fleur-de-lis. This is not the coat of arms of the earl of Hertford, though it resembles that of Jane Seymour, which however lacks the motto and upper section.] | LONDON. | Printed by Iohn Wolfe, and are to bee | sold at the little Shop ouer against the great South | dore of Paules. 1591. STC: 7583.

Back To Top
Back to top