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Francis Quarles (8 May 1592 – 8 September 1644), English poet, was born in Romford, Essex, (now London Borough of Havering), and baptised there on 8 May 1592.

Francis traced his ancestry to a family settled in England before the Norman Conquest with a long history in royal service. His great-grandfather, George Quarles, was Auditor to Henry VIII, and his father, James Quarles, held several places under Elizabeth I and James I, for which he was rewarded with an estate called Stewards in Romford. His mother, Joan Dalton, was the daughter and heiress of Eldred Dalton of Mores Place, Hadham. There were eight children in the family; the eldest, Sir Robert Quarles, was knighted by James I in 1608.

Francis was entered at Christ's College, Cambridge, in 1608, and subsequently at Lincoln's Inn.[1] He was made cupbearer to the Princess Elizabeth, in 1613, remaining abroad for some years; and before 1629 he was appointed secretary to Ussher, the primate of Ireland.

About 1633 he returned to England, and spent the next two years in the preparation of his Emblems. In 1639 he was made city chronologer, a post in which Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton had preceded him. At the outbreak of the Civil War he took the Royalist side, drawing up three pamphlets in 1644 in support of the king's cause. It is said that his house was searched and his papers destroyed by the Parliamentarians in consequence of these publications.

Quarles married Ursula Woodgate in 1618, by whom he had eighteen children. His son, John Quarles (1624-1665), was exiled to Flanders for his Royalist sympathies and was the author of Fons Lachrymarum (1648) and other poems.

The work by which Quarles is best known, the Emblems, was originally published in 1635, with grotesque illustrations engraved by William Marshall and others. The forty-five prints in the last three books are borrowed from the Pia Desideria (Antwerp, 1624) of Herman Hugo. Each "emblem" consists of a paraphrase from a passage of Scripture, expressed in ornate and metaphorical language, followed by passages from the Christian Fathers, and concluding with an epigram of four lines.

The Emblems was immensely popular with the common people, but the critics of the 17th and 18th centuries had no mercy on Quarles. Sir John Suckling in his Sessions of the Poets disrespectfully alluded to him as he "that makes God speak so big in's poetry." Pope in the Dunciad spoke of the Emblems, "Where the pictures for the page atone And Quarles is saved by beauties not his own."

Works

The works of Quarles include:

  • A Feast for Wormes. Set forth in a Poeme of the History of Jonah (1620), which contains other scriptural paraphrases, besides the one that furnishes the title; Hadassa; or the History of Queene Ester (1621)
  • Job Militant, with Meditations Divine and Moral (1624)
  • Sions Elegies, wept by Jeremie the Prophet (1624)
  • Sions Sonets sung by Solomon the King (1624), a paraphrase of the Canticles
  • The Historic of Samson (1631)
  • Alphabet of Elegies upon ... Dr Aylmer (1625)
  • Argalus and Parthenia (1629), the subject of which is borrowed from Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia
  • four books of Divine Fancies digested into Epigrams, Meditations and Observations (1632)
  • a reissue of his scriptural paraphrases and the Alphabet of Elegies as Divine Poems (1633)
  • Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638)
  • Memorials Upon the Death of Sir Robert Quarles, Knight (1639), in honor of his brother
  • Enchyridion, containing Institutions Divine and Moral (1640-41), a collection of four "centuries" of miscellaneous aphorisms
  • Observations concerning Princes and States upon Peace and Warre (1642)
  • Boanerges and Barnabas--Wine and Oyle for ... afflicted Soules (1644-46), collection of miscellaneous reflections
  • three violent Royalist tracts (1644), The Loyal Convert, The Whipper Whipt, and The New Distemper, reissued in one volume in 1645 with the title of The Profest Royalist
  • his quarrel with the Times, and some elegies
  • Solomon's Recantation ... (1645), which contains a memoir by his widow
  • The Shepheards' Oracles (1646)
  • a second part of Boanerges and Barnabas (1646)
  • a broadside entitled A Direfull Anathema against Peace-haters (1647)
  • an interlude, The Virgin Widow (1649).

An edition of the Emblems (Edinburgh, 1857) was embellished with new illustrations by CH Bennett and WA Rogers These are reproduced in the complete edition (1874) of Quarles included in the "Chertsey Worthies Library" by Dr AB Grosart, who provides an introductory memoir and an appreciation of Quarles's value as a poet.

References

  1. ^ Quarles, Francis in Venn, J. & J. A., Alumni Cantabrigienses, Cambridge University Press, 10 vols, 1922–1958.

External links

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Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Francis Quarles (baptised 1592-05-08, died 1644-09-08) was a prolific English prose-writer and poet. He is now best known for his Emblems (1638) and other moral and devotional verse.

Sourced

  • No man is born unto himself alone;
    Who lives unto himself, he lives to none.
    • Esther (1621), Sec. 1, Meditation 1.
  • The way to bliss lies not on beds of down,
    And he that has no cross deserves no crown.
    • Esther (1621), Sec. 9, Meditation 9.
  • Shine Son of glory, and my sinnes are gone
    Like twinkling Starres before the rising Sunne.
    • The Authour's Dreame (1629).
  • Even such is man, whose glory lends
    His life a blaze or two, and ends.
    • Hos ego versiculos (1629).
  • He that loves thee, He that keeps
    And guards thee, never slumbers, never sleeps.
    • Good Night (1632).
  • My soul, sit thou a patient looker-on;
    Judge not the play before the play is done:
    Her plot hath many changes; every day
    Speaks a new scene; the last act crowns the play.
    • Epigram. Respice Finem (1635).
  • Thou art my life, my way, my light
    • Why dost thou Shade thy Lovely Face? (1635).
  • Let the fear of a danger be a spur to prevent it: He that fears otherwise, gives advantage to the danger.
    • Enchiridion (1640).
  • Anger, when it is long in coming, is the stronger when it comes, and the longer kept.
    • Enchiridion (1640).
  • And what's a life? - a weary pilgrimage,
    Whose glory in one day doth fill the stage
    With childhood, manhood, and decrepit age.
    • What Is Life.
  • Let all thy joys be as the month of May
    And all thy days be as a marriage day:
    Let sorrow, sickness, and a troubled mind
    Be stranger to thee.
    • To a Bride.
  • The world's an Inn; and I her guest.
    • On the World
  • Death aims with fouler spite
    At fairer marks.
    • Divine Poems (ed. 1669). Compare: "Death loves a shining mark, a signal blow", Edward Young, Night Thoughts, night v. line 1011.
  • In having all things, and not Thee, what have I?
    Not having Thee, what have my labors got?
    Let me enjoy but Thee, what farther crave I?
    And having Thee alone, what have I not?
    • Reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 609.

Emblems (1635)

  • This house is to be let for life or years;
    Her rent is sorrow, and her income tears.
    Cupid, 't has long stood void; her bills make known,
    She must be dearly let, or let alone.
    • Book I, no. 10, Epigram 10.
  • Sweet Phosphor, bring the day
    Whose conquering ray
    May chase these fogs;
    Sweet Phosphor, bring the day!

    Sweet Phosphor, bring the day!
    Light will repay
    The wrongs of night;
    Sweet Phosphor, bring the day!
    • Book I, no. 14.
  • We spend our midday sweat, our midnight oil;
    We tire the night in thought, the day in toil.
    • Book II, no. 2.
  • Be wisely worldly, be not worldly wise.
    • Book II, no. 2.
  • This house is to be let for life or years;
    Her rent is sorrow, and her income tears.
    Cupid, 't has long stood void; her bills make known,
    She must be dearly let, or let alone.
    • Book II, no. 10, Epigram.
  • The slender debt to Nature's quickly paid,
    Discharged, perchance, with greater ease than made.
    • Book II, no. 13. Compare: "To die is a debt we must all of us discharge", Euripides, Alcestis, line 418.
  • The road to resolution lies by doubt:
    The next way home's the farthest way about.
    • Book IV, no. 2, Epigram.
  • The next way home's the farthest way about.
    • Book IV, no. 2, Epigram 2. Compare: "The longest way round is the shortest way home", Bohn, Foreign Proverbs (Italian).
  • It is the lot of man but once to die.
    • Book V, no. 7.

External links

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

FRANCIS QUARLES (1592-1644), English poet, was born at Romford, Essex, and baptized there on the 8th of May 1592. His father, James Quarles, held several places under Elizabeth, and traced his ancestry to a family settled in England before the Conquest. He was entered at Christ's College, Cambridge, in 1608, and subsequently at Lincoln's Inn. He was made cupbearer to the Princess Elizabeth, Electress Palatine, in 1613, remaining abroad for some years; and before 162 9 he was appointed secretary to Ussher, the primate of Ireland. About 1633 he returned to England, and spent the next two years in the preparation of his Emblems. In 163 9 he was made city chronologer, a post in which Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton had preceded him. At the outbreak of the Civil War he took the Royalist side, drawing up three pamphlets in 1644 in support of the king's cause. It is said that his house was searched and his papers destroyed by the Parliamentarians in consequence of these publications. He died on the 8th of September in that year.

Quarles married in 1618 Ursula Woodgate, by whom he had eighteen children. His son, John Quarles (1624-1665), was exiled to Flanders for his Royalist sympathies and was the author of Forts Lachrymarum (1648) and other poems.

The work by which Quarles is best known, the Emblems, was originally published in 1635, with grotesque illustrations engraved by William Marshall and others. The forty-five prints in the last three books are borrowed from the Pia Desideria (Antwerp, 1624) of Herman Hugo. Each "emblem" consists of a paraphrase from a passage of Scripture, expressed in ornate and metaphorical language, followed by passages from the Christian Fathers, and concluding with an epigram of four lines. The Emblems was immensely popular with the vulgar, but the critics of the 17th and 18th centuries had no mercy on Quarles. Sir John Suckling in his Sessions of the Poets disrespectfully alluded to him as he "that makes God speak so big in's poetry." Pope in the Dunciad spoke of the Emblems, " Where the pictures for the page atone And Quarles is saved by beauties not his own." The works of Quarles include: A Feast for Wormes. Set forth in a Poeme of the History of Jonah (1620), which contains other scriptural paraphrases, besides the one that furnishes the title; Hadassa; or the History of Queene Ester (1621); Job Militant, with Meditations Divine and Morall (1624); Sions Elegies, wept by Jeremie the Prophet (1624); Sions Sonets sung by Solomon the King (1624), a paraphrase of the Canticles; The Historie of Samson (1631); Alphabet of Elegies upon ... Dr Aylmer (1625); Argalus and Parthenia (1629), the subject of which is borrowed from Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia; four books of Divine Fancies digested into Epigrams, Meditations and Observations (1632); a reissue of his scriptural paraphrases and the Alphabet of Elegies as Divine Poems (1633); Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638); Enchyridion, containing Institutions Divine and Moral (1640-41), a collection of four "centuries" of miscellaneous aphorisms; Observations concerning Princes and States upon Peace and Warre (1642), and Boanerges and Barnabas - Wine and Oyle for ... afflicted Soules (1644-46), both of which are collections of miscellaneous reflections; three violent Royalist tracts (1644), The Loyall Convert, The Whipper Whipt, and The New Distemper, reissued in one volume in 1645 with the title of The Profest Royalist; his quarrell with the Times, and some elegies. Solomon's Recantation ... (1645) contains a memoir by his widow. Other posthumous works are The Shepheards' Oracles (1646), a second part of Boanerges and Barnabas (1646), a broadside entitled A Direfull Anathema against Peace-haters (1647), and an interlude, The Virgin Widow (1649).

An edition of the Emblems (Edinburgh, 1857) was embellished with new illustrations by C. H. Bennett and W. A. Rogers These are reproduced in the complete edition (1874) of Quarles included in the "Chertsey Worthies Library" by Dr A. B. Grosart, who provides an introductory memoir and an appreciation which greatly overestimates Quarles's value as a poet.


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