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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 10.djvu/83

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12 S.X.JAN. 28, 1922.] NOTES AND QUERIES. 61 LONDON. JANUARY 28, 1922. CONTENTS. No. 198. NOTES : Massinger and Dekker's ' The Virgin Martyr,' 61- St. Blaize Pallone, an Italian Game, 65 Principal London Coffee-houses, Taverns and Inns in the Eighteenth Century, 66 Bluebeard : Origin and Early References Bagshot and Bawwaw, 68 Buskin : Geneva Letter found Apprentices to and from Overseas Stowe House, Sal e of Contents, 1847 and 1921, 69. QUERIES : Cole, or Coale-rents Thornborough Battersea Enamel Works ' Allostree's Almanack,' 1680 V. de Veldte the Elder : Identification of Flag sought Quant Charms to be identified, 70 Spelling of " Champagne " " Water Measure," for Apples and Pears Family of Lee Andrew Barnard : Sir Frederick Augustus Barnard, K.C.H., 71 De Kemplen's Automaton Chess-player Will-o'-the wisp Mulberry- trees Bears Rain and Fishing Kynaston J. C. F. Keppel Proverbs and Phrases Authors wanted, 72. REPLIES : The Arms of Leeds, 72 Mrs. Joanna Stephens, 73 ' The Beggar's Opera ' in Dickens, 74 Title of " K.H." Baron Grant, 75 The Brighton Athenaeum (Antheum) Edward Lam plugh Launching of Ships Song-book by Tobias Hume, 76 Index Ecclesiasticus St. Christopher and the Christ Child The Troutbeck Pedigree The House of Harcourt, 77 Pharaoh as Surname Tavern Signs : " The Five Alls " The Maccabees, 78 Adah Isaacs Men- ken's ' Infelicia ' " Mata Hari's " Youth Wellington Testimonial Clock Tower Tha Abyssinian Cross " To burn one's boats " Author's Name wanted, 79. NOTES ON BOOKS : ' The Old Deeside Road ' ' Selected Polish Tales ' ' The Complete Works of Sir Philip Sidney ' ' The Elizabethans and the Empire.' Notices to Correspondents. Jlotetf. MASSINGER AND DEKKER'S 'THE VIRGIN MARTYR.' THE practice of collaboration in dramatic authorship, so prevalent in Elizabethan times, has seldom yielded a more happy result than in the case of Massinger and Dekker's ' The Virgin Martyr.' Massinger' s stately style and mastery of dramatic technique combined with Dekker's sincerity and high poetic gifts have given us as powerful and moving a tragedy as is to be found outside ohakespeare. No doubt from the point of view of the modern reader the " comic relief " afforded by those two base creatures Hircius and Spungius is a blot upon the play, but the introduction of these characters does not in any way affect its essential morality. Their conversation and behaviour, offensive though it is, is at least in keeping with their typical character, and the vices of lechery and drunkenness which they personify, far from being presented in an attractive light, are rendered as repulsive as possible. Their unutterable baseness at any rate serves as a most effective foil to the unassailable purity of the heroic Dorothea. Whether we have here a case of true collaboration, or rather as has been sup- posed the result of Massinger' s recasting of an early work of Dekker, is a question that it is scarcely possible to determine. It is, however, possible to distinguish, with a degree of certainty unusual where pro- blems of joint -author ship are concerned, the work of the two dramatists who com- posed it, for the writings of each possess clearly-marked characteristics. Not only has Massinger' s mature blank verse so distinctive a ring as to render it (in the longer speeches at least) easy of recognition, but he has also a habit of repeating images and sentiments to a degree not paralleled in the writings of any other dramatist. Many of his sentiments are to be met with, phrased in almost precisely the same way, in half a dozen or more of his plays. He has also a large number of mythological allusions drawn from a very limited stock and con- sequently frequently repeated. Dekker also has many characteristic words, phrases, allusions and tricks of speech. Some of the features most con- spicuous in his early plays e.g., his habit of repeating words two or three times in succession, of using volleys of adjectives, adverbs or synonyms are not, how r ever, particularly in evidence here, from which it is clear either that Dekker's work in the play is of a much later date than in such plays as ' Satiromastix,' ' The Shoemaker's Holiday ' and ' Westward Hoe,' or that Massinger has drastically revised Dekker's work throughout. On the whole, although some passages written by Dekker show signs of alteration by Massinger, the former conjecture seems to me the more probable. I incline to the opinion that the two authors worked upon the play together, and that ' The Virgin Martyr ' is the result of collabo- ration in the true sense of the term. Hitherto those who have discussed its authorship have treated the shares of the two authors as if they were entirely inde- pendent allotting one scene to Massinger, another to Dekker, and so on.* The

  • I should except Professor Cruickshank,

who, in Appendix X. of his ' Philip Massinger ' (published in 1920, after my analysis of the text was made) suggests that II. iii. and IV. i. are of composite authorship.