Reference > Cambridge History > Cavalier and Puritan > Lesser Caroline Poets > Sir Edward Sherborne
  Sidney Godolphin Katherine Philips  


The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume VII. Cavalier and Puritan.

IV. Lesser Caroline Poets.

§ 13. Sir Edward Sherborne.

There are few more curious instances of the chances of books and authors than the fact that, while Godolphin remained in MS., while Kynaston was never reprinted till recently, nor Hall and Stanley till nearly a century and a half after their dates, and then in small editions only, the poems of Sir Edward Sherborne, Stanley’s cousin, found their way into the standard collections of English poetry and, therefore, have long been easily accessible. Sherborne lived a rather more public life than his relative, though, as a Roman Catholic, he was debarred from public education. Born in 1618, he obtained the post of clerk of the ordnance, earlier held by his father; but in an evil hour (1642), just at the opening of the civil war. He was not only deprived but imprisoned for a time, after which he joined the king’s forces, was appointed commissary general of artillery and made Oxford his headquarters till its surrender in 1646. After this, he suffered severely from confiscation, but was helped by Stanley, and employed by the Savile and Coventry families. He recovered his post in the ordnance at the restoration, and was unscathed by the popish plot; but he became a non-juror at the revolution and again fell into indigence. He died at a great age in 1702, the last of his poetic tribe. But, not at any time had he been of their strongest. Like Stanley, he has left a few original pieces and a great many translations; but Stanley’s unfailing elegance is wanting. Most of his translations from a miscellaneous set of authors, Coluthus and Preti, Theocritus and Casimir, are in undistinguished couplets; his original pieces are more lyrical and better; the best being religious. The love-poems are more like those of an inferior Carew than those of Stanley, Godolphin, Kynaston or Hall. But “Chloris! on thine eyes I gaze,” The Vow, “Love once love ever” and one or two others are not unworthy of a place in a full anthology of the kind at the time.   27

  Sidney Godolphin Katherine Philips  
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