MacLean, Gerald, editor. The Return of the King : An Anthology of English Poems Commemorating the Restoration of Charles II / edited by Gerald MacLean
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Cedrus Britanica

   Titlepage: CEDRUS BRITANICA / ET / LAURUS REGIA / SIVE / REX & CORONOA / A / POETICAL HEXAMERON. / Shewing, / 1. The Invention,} / 2. The Distinction,} / 3. The Designation,} / 4. The Necessity, } / 5. The Dignity,} / 6. The Perpetuity.} / [parallel to long bracket} Of Crownes. / [design: angels hold rose and thistle] / Printed, Anno Dom. 1660.

   Undated, but included here for its anticipation of the Coronation.

   Echoes of Herbert in the final verses anxiously awaiting the coronation; and possibly echoes of Marvell's "Garden" in lines 77-79?


Should Juno now (as once she did the 1 nine)
Perswade my Muse to chose a theam divine;
And dare, with the sweet Acheloiades
To sing a parode, till shee'd won the baies:
5: I'de wish her take no other theam then this,
Rex Coronatus, is a Kingdomes blisse.

Of the Invention of Crowns.

SUBTLE invention! pregnant growth of Arts!
Which mad'st the Crown of such admired parts;
And so stupendious, that 'tis hard to tell
10: Whether thou shewdst an art or miracle.
Man held the pencill, thou didst guide the hand:
His was the motion, but thine the command.
What e're of solid matter fram'd we see,
Was immaterially first wrought by thee.
Invention made the Artist merit fame:
She did the work, though he hath got the name.
Who e're it was, that found this royall art
Of making Crowns; he wisely did impart
His skill: Who would so rare an Art interre;
20: And make its womb to prove its Sepulchre?
Should not the fancy act by emanation,
An Art would prove a bodylesse Creation.
Th'idea of a Crown, that's forg'd and coyn'd
Only within the Mint-house of the mind,
25: Is little worth, unlesse it serves to be
Th'exemplar of some reall Entitie.
What honour is't to think on Crowns? since Clowns
May be Crown'd with imaginarie Crowns.
That must have reall worth, that's made to be
30: The greatest Emblem of Supremacie.
Here Art excell'd: the Crown she did ingage
To be the wonder of the golden Age.
'Tis soon resolv'd, whether more skill were shown
When Nature wrought the Gold, or Art the Crown.
35: Gold's but Mechanick trash that doth besmear
First the Refiner, then th'Artificer:
Nor is it fit for Crowns or Scepters, till
'Tis forg'd and furbisht by admired Skill.
Admired Skill! that makest Crowns to be
40: Like that Celestial-spangled Canopy,
So full of Diamonds; as if Art thence
Would cause not only light, but influence.
O rare invention! thou such Skill hast shown
In making, that thou best deserv'st the Crown.

Of the Distinction of Crowns.

45: Should Art, and Nature strive, and both disclose
Their Glory; that the Crown, and this the Rose:
The Rose no doubt would blush and shut her eyes,
As guilty of her own deformities:
Would throw her self, and all her beauty down
50: Before the golden splendor of the Crown.
Should Flora all the Glory of the Spring
Gather into one heap, and proudly bring
Her sweetest Flowrs forth; they were not meet
For Crowns, their beauty b'ing as short as sweet.
55: What though the Ancients us'd such toyes of old
For Crowns and Garlands; shall we now slight Gold?
Take all the Tulips, Roses, Lillies, Pines,
Pinkes, Poppies, Violets, and all that shines
Or casts a fragrant smell: Cut branches from
60: The Laurel, Myrtle, Olive, Ivy; some
Of these perhaps may please the wanton sense,
Yet not contain that worth and excellence,
That grace and beauty, which ('bove natures power)
Is wrought by Art in her transcendent flower.
65: Well then my Sophocles sit down; be still;
Make Crowns no more with his white Daffodill:
Sappho that famous Poetesse may now
Use Rubies 'stead of Roses: Juno's brow
May scorn the Lilly: may Diana be
70: Asham'd to wear a Crown of Myrtle tree.
Let sleeping Morpheus with his Poppy-crown
Dream ne're so much of flattering renown:
Let Meleager boast himself the man
That wore the Garland once Pancarpian:
75: Let Bacchus wear (who makes the Tun his Throne)
An Ivy Chaplet on his head, or none:
Let Gamesters strive, and think it great renown
To win the Olive, or the Laurell Crown:
But what's all this? let Natures Rosarie
80: Exhaust her richest Treasures, and out-vie
The Triumphs of those ancient Roman plaies,
Wherein the Victors wore victorious Baies:
Yet these, because they fade as fast as spring,
Are toyes and shadowes. Gold best Crowns a King.
85: Whose durable and glitt'ring matter speaks
A long and glorious reign: Whose substance breakes
Resisting metals: and whose worth and weight
Do argue weighty cares, in worthy might:
Whose All-commanding vertue lets us see
90: The power of an earthly Deitie:
Whose estimate above inferiour things
Showes what esteem is due to sacred Kings.
Gold then we see the chiefest Minerall,
Must needs be best to Crown a King withall.

Of the Designation of Crowns.

95: Crowns are for Kings, and Kings alone for Crowns:
When these two meet and joyn Rebellion frowns;
Dissention frets; and Treason stops her mouth;
The Monsters of a Kingdome lose their growth,
Go backward (that's their proper motion
To walke like Crabs kàé' à'vàãoëiâmov.) chk GK
Kings then have greatest honour, when they wear
That which commands the Subjects dread and fear.
The Motto of a Crown should alwayes be
Rex & Corona, joyn'd eternally.
105: Et, like a Gordian knot, should stand so stout
'Twixt both, that nought but death should cut it out.
For in the Union of those Delian-twins,
Concord in state, and Truth in Church begins.
Crown'd, is a concrete, proper unto none,
110: But those, whom right exalts unto the Throne.
Here Subjects are not Subjects, Kings must be
The only Subjects of this Propertie.
England hath oft been sick, but yet not dead;
Because she had a Crown to bind her head.
115: Preserve the head, wherein the senses lie,
And then no fear, the body cannot die.
Give that the Crown, and Diadem to boot:
Lesse pompous Ornaments will serve the foot.
It cannot be, but that a Kingdome reele,
120: Which takes her Crown, and wears it on her heele.
What e're is so preposterous as this
To order, carries a Antithesis.
Look round about, behold what Symmetrie,
And sweet convenience in the world we see:
125: Nature distributing her Gifts to all,
Keeps a proportion Geometricall.
And shall not man in imitation, thus
Observe a Prius and Posterius?
Should we not own some Pow'r imperiall,
130: The wild and savage beasts would shame us all:
For they consent the Lyon still should reign;
Because by nature made their Soveraign.
The Crown, which all admire, and some adore,
Is that, which none but high-born Princes wore.
135: The tallest branch upon that Royall stemme,
Is onely fit to wear the Diadem.
Should Peasants rule, and keep their Princes under, chk
'Twould put the seven wonders out of wonder.
Of all Monstrosities, not one like these
140: To see a Nation walk Antipodes;
To see the Sun devested of its light,
And made inferiour to the guide of night;
To see a Dunghill mounted to the Sky,
There plac't to be the Dayes illustrious Eye;
145: To see a Swine weare Jewels in his snout;
To see the Lillies cropt, whilst Briers sprout:
Yet these, and many more were found wrapt in
The late Apostrophe of Crown from King.
Crowns therefore are the great Prerogative
150: Of Sacred Kings: Flowers that will not thrive
Or grow on Sordid shrubs; but made to be
The highest Glory of the Cedar-tree.

Of the Necessity of Crowns.

155: When that the Sun shall cease to guide the day;
When Moon and Stars shall need no borrowed Ray:
When Kings and Government shall be no more;
Then Crownes shall cease as needlesse: not before.
The States (as Stars take from the Sun their light)
160: From Crowns receive both Majesty and might.
These only can the Kingdomes Peace defend
And make the sturdy'st Tyrants breake or bend:
These only can with their victorious Rayes,
Dispell our storms, and give us Halcyon-dayes.
165: When the late Crown did fall, such Tempests rose,
As if the Centre would it self disclose:
Such Hero-canes did then disturbe our ease,
As if Old-England were an Indies.
Cyclopian Darts did wound and kill so fast,
170: As if the World would then breath out its last.
It was an Age that well might weary out
The Cyclops, Vulcan, Mars, and all that rout.
The Sword struck off our head without controll,
And made the Palace like a Capitol.
175: And shall not future Ages weep the tale,
And story of that Monarchs Funerall?
There needs must follow darknesse, tumults, war,
When that the Sun became a falling Star.
'Twas then the Herses ran where e're they list
To fire the World, when their own guide was mist.
Posterity shall mourn to hear what fate
Hung o're this dolefull, this distrackted State.
But we may now rejoyce. There comes at last
A sweet forgetfulnesse of sorrowes past.
185: May that once Captive, now triumphant Crown
Conquer its foes, and throw Rebellion down;
Restore this Palsie-Nation to its health;
And Monarchy prefer to Common-wealth.
So shall we ever jo-p'ans sing,
190: And make the World with acclamations ring:
So shall our words with choicest accents be
Rais'd up to such Seraphick harmonie;
That ev'ry single Vowell shall rebound,
And like a Diphthong give a double sound;
195: Nothing shall passe out through our lips, that is
Not utter'd with a chearfull Emphasis.
Without the Crown all other things are toyes:
The crowning of the King crowns all our joyes.
O may it therefore never more be known
Our selves to want a King, our King a Crown.

Of the Dignity of Crowns.

Read over the Worlds Alphabet, the story
Of sage Antiquity: there't not that Glory
In all the Feats of Art, which here is shown
In this her Master-piece, the Royall Crown.
205: Those golden Apples, which brave Hercules
Took by his valour from th'Hesperides,
Were fair without, and beauteous to the Eye,
Whilst all within did rot and putrifie
The Golden Fleece, which Jason took such pain
210: To steale from Colchos, was but wooll in grain:
'Twere graines of Gold that made it such a peece,
B'ing first a Sheeps-skin, then a golden fleece.
The golden Crown hath more of worth then these,
Or any jewell from the Indian Seas.
215: It needs no varnish outwardly to hide
Its inward blemishes; it needs not pride
It self in painted showes; it needs no foile,
Unlesse it be its Diamonds to spoyle.
Which sparkling Gems, like eyes set round, do well
220: Denote a King the Kingdomes Sentinell;
Who with more care his Subjects fortifies,
Then Argus Io, with 2 his hundred eyes.
Its matter is by Chymists so refin'd,
The Quintessence is only left behind:
225: So strange and admirable is its frame,
The Artist scarce beleeves he made the same.
Who would to all its excellencies come,
Must with the golden number count their Summe.
Would'st in a word know what this Circlet is?
230: Thou canst not without a Periphrasis.
It doth in its Superlative degree,
Transcend the reach of an Hyperbole.
Ther's more contained in that one word, Crown;
Then ever was or fully can be known.
235: Crown'd, that's enough it self; there needs no more
Be said, to make the Subject to adore
His lawfull Prince; or make his Prince to be
Intitled to a just Supremacie.

Of the Perpetuity of Crowns.

If that an humble Verse could reach the Sky,
240: Or meter could mete out Eternity:
Then might perhaps to ev'ry eye be shown
The vastnesse of the Crowns duration.
Time may unglosse the Flourishes of Art,
But can't annihilate the smallest part
245: Of massie Gold. Crowns shall out-wrestle all;
Yea, time it self at last, and giv't the fall.
When these (like timely fruit from off the Tree)
Do fall away, they do not cease to be:
Nor shall they die at Natures Funerall,
250: But shall be chang'd, and made perpetuall.
O may Great Britains Monarch many yeares
Reign here below, and then above the Spheares:
And when these golden Shadowes all are gone,
May there for ever wear a reall Crown:
255: May, when his Princely Race is finisht here,
Passe from his own to Heavens Star-Chamber.
May factious Comets never more presage
To Peace a Period, Prince a Pilgrimage:
Till that time comes, when time it self shall die,
260: And shall lie buried in Eternity.


[1] the] he WF

[2] with] wih

An Ardent wish for the Coronation of his sa-
cred Majesty CHARLES II.

Are Crowns so usefull to maintain
The Peoples safety, Princes reign?
And made for none
But Kings alone?
5: Then why doth not that Royall head
With its own Crown (that is so dread)
It self adorn,
Since't must be worn?
Why do our greatest joyes come on
10: With such a slow gradation,
As if delay
Would bid us nay?
Why doth delay thus rack our hope,
Making us run beside the scope,
And happy end,
To which we tend?
Why don't our eyes behold and see
The joyfull'st Contiguitie
That e're was known
'Twixt head and Crown?
Come quickly then thou joyfull day,
Come swifter then a darted Ray
Out from the Sun
When clouds are gone.
25: Out-run our thoughts: with nimble speed
Anticipate the time decreed.
Let haste prepare
Against despair.
Our minds with expectation led
30: Would languish, if not pullyed
And still drawn up
With cords of hope.
And hope it self would fayle at last,
Should it not see that day make haste,
Which doth attend
It hoped end.
Lets wait a while. We shall ere long
Shut up all Sorrowes with a Song.
When Charles is crown'd
Joyes shal rebound.

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