Internet Shakespeare Editions

Become a FriendSign in

About this text

  • Title: Prefatory Materials (Folio 1, 1664)

  • Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: Ben Jonson
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Prefatory Materials (Folio 1, 1664)

    Upon the Effigies of my worthy Friend, the Au-
    thour Mr. W. Shakespeare, and his Works.

    SPectator, this Lifes Shadow is; to see
    300The truer Image and a livelier he
    Turn Reader. But, observe his Comick vain,
    Laugh, and proceed next to a Tragick strain,
    Then weep; So when thou find'st two contraries,
    Two different passions from thy rapt soul rise,
    305Say, (who alone effect such wonders could)
    Rare Shakespeare to the life thou dost behold.

    To the Memory of Mr. W. Shakespeare.

    WE wonder (Shakespeare) that thou went'st so
    310From the VVorlds-Stage, to the Graves-Tyring-
    We thought thee dead, but this thy Printed worth,
    Tells thy Spectators, that thou went'st but forth
    To enter with applause. An Actors Art,
    315Can dye, and live, to act a second Part.
    That's but an Exit of Mortality;
    This, a Re-entrance to a Plaudite.
    J. M.