The Garden, or The Contention of Flowers

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The Garden, or The Contention of Flowers

Poem #12

Original Source

Hester Pulter, Poems breathed forth by the nobel Hadassas, University of Leeds Library, Brotherton Collection, MS Lt q 32

Versions

  • Facsimile of manuscript: Photographs provided by University of Leeds, Brotherton Collection

  • Transcription of manuscript: By Leah Knight and Wendy Wall.
  • Elemental edition: By Leah Knight and Wendy Wall.

How to cite these versions

Conventions for these editions

The Pulter Project: Poet in the Making

  • Created by Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
  • Encoded by Katherine Poland, Matthew Taylor, Elizabeth Chou, and Emily Andrey, Northwestern University
  • Website designed by Sergei Kalugin, Northwestern University
  • IT project consultation by Josh Honn, Northwestern University
  • Project sponsored by Northwestern University, Brock University, and University of Leeds
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Index of Poems

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X (Close panel)Notes: Transcription
Unnumbered line
Title note

 Physical note

double strike-through; the left half of the “A” is not struck through.
Unnumbered line
Title note

 Physical note

whole word blotted, but remaining visible ascenders (and final “er”) suggest “Pulter”

 Editorial note

In these transcriptions we preserve as many details of the original material, textual, and graphic properties of Hester Pulter’s manuscript verse as we have found practical. Whenever possible, for instance, original spelling, punctuation, capitalization, lineation, insertions, deletions, alterations, spacing between words and lines, and indentation are all maintained; abbreviations and brevigraphs are not expanded; and superscript and subscript representations are retained. See full conventions for the transcriptions here.
Line number 4

 Physical note

“watr’d” inserted directly above “Diamon’d”
Line number 6

 Physical note

corrected from “That”, with initial “e” over “a”; final “t” imperfectly erased; additional “e” crowded into space before next word
Line number 6

 Physical note

unclear correction of spelling mid-word
Line number 12

 Physical note

“y” appears crowded into space before next word
Line number 12

 Physical note

“would” appears imperfectly erased, with apostrophe and “d” of “I’d” written over “w”
Line number 17

 Physical note

quadruple strike-through
Line number 24

 Physical note

ascending straight line beneath
Line number 25

 Physical note

in left margin between this line and next: “The Woodbine 1:st
Line number 31

 Physical note

initial “I” scribbled out; final “a” altered to “e”
Line number 33

 Physical note

“their” in different hand from main scribe; double strike-through on “that”
Line number 49

 Physical note

in left margin, between this line and next: “The Tulip 2d
Line number 58
a sizeable space follows this word, with room for perhaps another two-letter word.
Line number 63

 Physical note

spaces between lines on this page are greater and hand alters slightly
Line number 69

 Physical note

insertion marks and “nor,” directly above “not,” in different hand from main scribe
Line number 74

 Physical note

multiple strike-through of “y”
Line number 78

 Physical note

in left margin: “The Wallflower or Hartseaſe 3d
Line number 82

 Physical note

scribbled out
Line number 103

 Physical note

small blot obscures the “c”; possibly a deliberate cancellation
Line number 103

 Physical note

“s” cancelled with a blot
Line number 108

 Physical note

in left margin “The Lilly 4:th
Line number 136

 Physical note

appears crowded into space between surrounding words, possibly in different hand from main scribe
Line number 137

 Physical note

two or three letters, starting with “H,” scribbled out
Line number 144

 Physical note

in left margin: “The Rose 5:th
Line number 168

 Physical note

the “c” is crowded between the “s” and “k”
Line number 184

 Physical note

in left margin
Line number 202

 Physical note

“y” imperfectly erased
Line number 208

 Physical note

in left margin: “The Poppy 6:th
Line number 211

 Physical note

multiple strike-through
Line number 213

 Physical note

“t” is written over a “d”
Line number 214

 Physical note

“Or” in different hand from main scribe; “Or” blotted
Line number 215

 Physical note

“ff” written over another letter, possibly an “S”
Line number 215

 Physical note

“y” blotted
Line number 246

 Physical note

“of” struck-through twice horizontally; “from” in H2.
Line number 247

 Physical note

“Such” blotted; “ſuch,” inserted directly above, in different hand from main scribe
Line number 257

 Physical note

in left margin: “The Violet 7:th
Line number 300

 Physical note

doubly struck-through, scribbled cancellation of two words, possibly “none is”
Line number 307

 Physical note

to left, in margin: “The Helitropia 8:th”; beneath, “Sunflower” and curved, doubly-crossed flourish, with indiscernible pen markings to left
Line number 307

 Physical note

superscript “u” written over other letter
Line number 314

 Physical note

imperfectly erased “ne” visible afterward, and dot over “y” signalling alteration of earlier “i”
Line number 324

 Physical note

“S” in lighter ink
Line number 335

 Physical note

“u” corrects earlier “i”
Line number 338

 Physical note

“t” is superscript to superscript “y”
Line number 358

 Physical note

In left margin: “The Auricola 9:th
Line number 358

 Physical note

the “u” is cramped between the “A” and “r”
Line number 359

 Physical note

insertion marks and “w” in different hand from main scribe; first “e” written over “a”
Line number 362

 Physical note

“H” imperfectly erased; first “a” appears written over prior “e”
Line number 365

 Physical note

in left margin: “Why”
Line number 376

 Physical note

after this line, half a blank page, with poem continuing on next page
Line number 377

 Physical note

in left margin: “The fflower Deluce 10:th
Line number 396

 Physical note

“r” and insertion marks in different hand from main scribe
Line number 399

 Physical note

apostrophe and “s” appear crowded between surrounding words in different hand from main scribe
Line number 403

 Physical note

“d” written over “t”
Line number 406

 Physical note

second “e” blotted
Line number 415

 Physical note

In left margin: “The July-flower 11:th”
Line number 418

 Physical note

final “t” crowded between surrounding words
Line number 420

 Physical note

“n” crowded between surrounding words
Line number 451

 Physical note

dots beneath, with some in blank space after (represented in main text)
Line number 469

 Physical note

after this line, half a blank page, with poem continuing on next page
Line number 470

 Physical note

in left margin: “The Adonis 12:th
Line number 470

 Physical note

“b” written over “p”
Line number 485

 Physical note

“[?]" may be “t”; “ans” appears crowded in before next word
Line number 507

 Physical note

initial “i” imperfectly erased; apostrophe added possibly in different hand from main scribe
Line number 510

 Physical note

originally written “Sorcirus” with the “u” changed to an “i”
Sorry, but there are no notes associated with any currently displayed witness.
X (Close panel)Transcription
Transcription

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The Garden, or
The Contention of fflowers, To my Deare Daughter Mris
Physical Note
double strike-through; the left half of the “A” is not struck through.
Anne
Physical Note
whole word blotted, but remaining visible ascenders (and final “er”) suggest “Pulter”
[?]
, at her deſire written
Physical Note
In the manuscript, the title originally continued: “To My Dear Daughter Mistress Anne Pulter, At Her Desire Written”; “Anne” has been crossed out, but is still legible, while “Pulter” is fairly thoroughly blotted out. Anne Pulter, 1635-1666 (Eardley), was one of Hester Pulter’s daughters. While Pulter refers to her children at several points in the manuscript, this is the only poem in which she explicitly indicates her family’s awareness that she is a writer and their participation in her poetic production. A “contention” is a contest or competition.
The Garden, or The Contention of Flowers
AE TITLE
In these transcriptions we preserve as many details of the original material, textual, and graphic properties of Hester Pulter’s manuscript verse as we have found practical. Whenever possible, for instance, original spelling, punctuation, capitalization, lineation, insertions, deletions, alterations, spacing between words and lines, and indentation are all maintained; abbreviations and brevigraphs are not expanded; and superscript and subscript representations are retained. See full conventions for the transcriptions here.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
The aim of the elemental edition is to make the poems accessible to the largest variety of readers, which involves modernizing spelling and punctuation as well as adding basic glosses. Spelling and punctuation reflect current standard American usage; punctuation highlights syntax which might otherwise be obscure. Outmoded but still familiar word forms (“thou,” “‘tis,” “hold’st”) are not modernized, and we do not modernize grammar when the sense remains legible. After a brief headnote aimed at offering a “way in” to the poem’s unique qualities and connections with other verse by Pulter or her contemporaries, the edition features a minimum of notes and interpretative framing to allow more immediate engagement with the poem. Glosses clarify synonyms or showcase various possible meanings in Pulter’s time. Other notes identify named people and places or clarify obscure material. We rely (without citation) primarily on the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the Oxford Reference database, and the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. When we rely on Alice Eardley’s edition of Pulter’s work, we cite her text generally (“Eardley”); other sources are cited in full. The result is an edition we consider a springboard for further work on Pulter’s poetry. See full conventions for this edition here.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall


— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
Lying in her garden, Pulter finds herself the chosen umpire of a contest among a dozen flowers in this, her longest poem. Before she will choose a winner, she exhorts the disputants to describe their “virtues”—a word encompassing both moral and botanical meanings in a period when plants were key medicinal ingredients. As the garden members readily comply, Pulter is able to show off her extensive knowledge of botany (drawn from classical and contemporary natural histories and gardening manuals), especially its links to mythology. In addition to their role in health care, the plants concern themselves with their “color, beauty, fashion, smell”—alternately, as they speak in turn, vaunting themselves and mocking the other flowers’ grandiose claims about each other. As well as a spirited contribution to the poetic genre of the debate, Pulter’s poem quietly critiques a parliamentary system in which representatives devote themselves to self-promotion and mud-slinging more than any larger truth. No wonder the umpire’s discreet choice, in the end, is to cut short this mockery of a parliament—perhaps a particularly happy ending for a royalist like Pulter, whose country’s parliament cut short her king’s life and the monarchy itself, leaving her party to take solace in rural retreats. This garden, ironically, provides little peace or quiet, instead subjecting weary humans to the energetic quarreling that they might go there to escape.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall


— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
1
Once in my Garden as a lone I lay
Once in my garden as alone I lay,
2
Some Solitary howres to paſs away
Some solitary hours to pass away,
3
My fflowers most faire and fresh w:thin my view
My flowers most fair and fresh within my view,
4
New
Physical Note
“watr’d” inserted directly above “Diamon’d”
Diamon’d watr’d
over with Aurora’s dew
New
Gloss Note
diamonded; made to glitter like a diamond
diamoned
, watered o’er with
Gloss Note
goddess of the dawn’s
Aurora’s
dew—
5
Theire names in or^der I er’e long will mention
Their names in order I
Gloss Note
before
ere
long will mention—
6
Physical Note
corrected from “That”, with initial “e” over “a”; final “t” imperfectly erased; additional “e” crowded into space before next word
There
hap^ened amongst them this
Physical Note
unclear correction of spelling mid-word
contenition
There happened amongst them this contention:
7
Which of them did theire fellowes all excell
Which of them did their fellows all excel
8
In vertue, Couloure, Bevty, ffashion, Smell
In
Gloss Note
not just moral goodness or general superiority but, in this botanical context, beneficial or specifically healing power
virtue
, color, beauty, fashion, smell;
9
And mee they choſe for Umpire in this play
And me they chose for umpire in this play.
10
Then up I roſe, Sad thoughts I laid away
Then up I rose, sad thoughts I laid away,
11
And unto them I inſtantly Replied
And unto them I instantly replied
12
That this theire
Physical Note
“y” appears crowded into space before next word
controversy
I’d
Physical Note
“would” appears imperfectly erased, with apostrophe and “d” of “I’d” written over “w”
[?]
decide
That this their controversy I’d decide,
13
Soe they would Stand to my arbitrement
Gloss Note
if
So
they would stand to my
Gloss Note
power to decide for others; decision or sentence of an authority; settlement of a dispute
arbitrament
.
14
They Smileing Anſwer’d they were all content
They, smiling, answered they were all content.
15
I gave them leave theire virtues to declare
I gave them leave their virtues to declare
16
That I the better might theire worth compare
That I the better might their worth compare.
and

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17
And now I
Physical Note
quadruple strike-through
doe
humbly doe implore the Ayde
And now I humbly do implore the aid
18
Of that most Debonare delicious Maide
Of that most
Gloss Note
gentle; gracious; courteous; affable
debonair
,
Gloss Note
highly pleasing or delightful; affording amusement or enjoyment; characterized by or tending to sensuous indulgence; pleasing to the taste or smell
delicious
maid,
19
Louely Erato Crow^n’d with fragrant fflowers
Lovely
Gloss Note
the muse of lyric (especially love) poetry and hymns; Greek for “lovely”
Erato
, crowned with fragrant flowers,
20
Who with her virgin Sisters Spend their howres
Who with her virgin sisters spend their hours
21
By Cleare Pereus, Cristall Hippocreen,
By clear
Gloss Note
Pieria was a district on the slopes of Mount Olympus associated with the Muses and with springs that provided poetic inspiration.
Pereus
, crystal
Gloss Note
a fountain on Mount Helicon, where the Muses lived
Hippocrene
,
22
Sweet Hellicon or Tempes fflowery green
Sweet
Gloss Note
Helicon was a mountain associated with the Muses and with fountains believed to give inspiration to those who drank them. Tempe refers to the valley between Mount Olympus and Mount Ossa, which was dedicated to the cult of Apollo and thus associated with music and beauty.
Helicon or Tempe’s flowery green
:
23
ffaire Thesbian Ladyes all I aske of you,
Fair
Gloss Note
associated with the dramatic arts (from the sixth-century Thespis, founder of Greek tragedy)
Thespian
ladies, all I ask of you,
24
Is, that I give to every flower
Physical Note
ascending straight line beneath
her due
,
Is that I give to every flower her due.
The Woodbine
The Woodbine
25
Physical Note
in left margin between this line and next: “The Woodbine 1:st
ffirst
spoake the Double Woodbine wondro:s faire
First spoke the
Gloss Note
honeysuckle, a flowering climbing shrub
Double Woodbine
wondrous fair,
26
Whose Aromatick Breath perfum’d the Ayre
Whose aromatic breath perfumed the air,
27
Saying I am confident all that can Smell
Saying: “I am confident all that can smell
28
Or See will say that I the Rest excell
Or see will say that I the rest excel.
29
Why am I placed elce ’bout Princely Bowers
Why am I placed else ’bout princely
Gloss Note
dwellings; chambers; shaded garden retreats
bowers
,
30
Shadeing theire Arbours and theyre statly Towers
Shading their
Gloss Note
garden features, often shaded and enclosed by intertwined shrubs and lattice work
arbors
and their stately towers?
31
I did about
Physical Note
initial “I” scribbled out; final “a” altered to “e”
[I]Idalies
Arbour grow
I did about
Gloss Note
Venus’s
Idalia’s
arbor grow,
32
Her bower of Loue, when youthfull Blood did flow
Her bower of love, when youthful blood did flow
33
In old Anchises veins
Physical Note
“their” in different hand from main scribe; double strike-through on “that”
^their ^that
hee did Rest
In old
Gloss Note
Venus’s lover, father of Aeneas
Anchises’s
veins; there he did rest
34
His Rosey Cheeks upon her Lilly brest
His rosy cheeks upon her lily breast,
35
Whos loue produced the happy Julyan Race
Whose love produced the happy
Gloss Note
The Roman emperor Julius Caesar claimed to be descended from Aeneas
Julian race
.
36
Therefore (of all) give mee the chiefest place
Therefore (of all) give me the chiefest place.
37
Oft hath Diana underneath my Shade
Oft hath
Gloss Note
goddess of chastity
Diana
underneath my shade
38
To inrich ſome fountaine her unready made
To enrich some fountain
Gloss Note
undressed herself
her unready made
,
diſcloſeing

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39
Diſcloſeing ^then to my admireing eye
Disclosing then to my admiring eye
40
Thoſe bevties which who ſoe doth prie
Those beauties which whoso doth pry
41
Into, (let him) Ô let him) Still beware
Into, let him—O let him—still beware,
42
Least in Acteons Punniſhment hee Share
Lest in
Gloss Note
The mythological hunter Actaeon accidentally came upon Diana bathing naked with her maid. To punish him, Diana transformed him into a deer and he was torn apart by his own hunting hounds.
Actaeon’s punishment
he share.
43
Doe but obſerve the Amezonian Bee
Do but observe the
Gloss Note
Bees lived in a matriarchy, like Amazons, a mythical group of separatist female warriors.
Amazonian bee
44
Com to this Garden, Shee noe flower can See
Come to this garden: she
Gloss Note
implied: no other flower
no flower
can see
45
That can with Mell, and Necter her Supplie
That can with
Gloss Note
Latin for honey
mel
and nectar her supply;
46
My Cornucopie doth her Satisfie
My
Gloss Note
the horn of plenty symbolizing fruitfulness and plenty, represented in art as a goat’s horn overflowing with flowers, fruit, and corn
cornucopia
doth her satisfy.
47
Then of precedencie I need not doubt
Then of precedency I need not doubt,
48
Cauſe I perfume your goeing in and out
Gloss Note
This line is possibly an allusion to the tradition of growing honeysuckle around the doors of houses (Eardley).
’Cause I perfume your going in and out
.”
The Tulip
The Tulip
49
Physical Note
in left margin, between this line and next: “The Tulip 2d
The
Tulip to the Woodbine then Replyed
The Tulip to the Woodbine then replied:
50
I am Amazed at thy infinite Pride
“I am amazed at thy infinite pride.
51
Dost thou preſume or canst thou once Suppose
Dost thou presume, or canst thou once suppose,
52
To lead impartiall Justice by the Noſe
Gloss Note
To lead by the nose was to cause to obey submissively or to guide by persuasion
To lead impartial Justice by the nose
?
53
Becauſe thou yieldest a pleasſant Spicie Smell
Because thou yieldest a pleasant spicy smell,
54
Therefore all other flowers thou must excell
Therefore all other flowers thou must excel?
55
What though thy limber dangling flowers hover
What though thy
Gloss Note
flexible; limp, flaccid, or flabby (physically or morally)
limber
, dangling flowers hover,
56
Hideing Som wanton and her wanton lover
Hiding some wanton and her wanton lover—
57
Though Venus and her Paramore it bee
Though Venus and her paramour it be?
58
A
a sizeable space follows this word, with room for perhaps another two-letter word.
Micurella
bee alone for mee
Gloss Note
A “maquerella” was a term for a female pimp or procuress (see note for this line by Frances E. Dolan, “The Garden” [Poem 12], Amplified Edition). The tulip seems to dismissively order the woodbine to perform that role (to “be” a maquerella) “alone”—that is, to be a maquerella without her (the tulip’s) help—before going on to declare that she refuses the office of pimp. In the manuscript, a blank space after “Micurella,” a lack of punctuation in these lines (as in most of Pulter’s poems), and potentially unusual syntax (as in our proposed editing) makes this passage difficult to parse.
A maquerella be, alone; for me
,
59
I Scorn that office as I doe thy Pride
I scorn that
Gloss Note
a position with certain duties, here the Woodbine’s hiding of lovers
office
as I do thy pride.
60
Yet am I in a Thouſand Coulours Died
Yet am I in a thousand colors dyed,
61
And though my Seed bee Sown a Hundred yeare
And though my seed be sown a hundred year
62
Yet Still in Newer Coulours I apeare
Gloss Note
John Gerard describes the tulip’s annual proliferation and variety of its colors (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 140).
Yet still in newer colors I appear
;
And

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63
Physical Note
spaces between lines on this page are greater and hand alters slightly
And
if of other flowers there were none
And if of other flowers there were none,
64
A Garden might be made of me alone
A garden might be made of me alone,
65
And floros Mantle might imbroidred bee
And
Gloss Note
Flora is the mythological goddess of flowers and personification of nature's power in producing flowers; a mantle is a cloak or covering.
Flora’s mantle
might embroidered be,
66
As rich as now it is by none but mee
As rich as now it is, by none but me.
67
That Glorious King that had w:ts heat deſir’d
Gloss Note
The king is the biblical king of Israel, Solomon, known for his wealth and wisdom; “what’s” signifies “what his.” See Matthew 6:28-29: “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
That glorious king that had what’s heart desired
68
Was never in his Thrown Soe rich attird
Was never in his throne so rich attired
69
As I,
Physical Note
insertion marks and “nor,” directly above “not,” in different hand from main scribe
\ not nor \
in Such various Coulours drest
As I, nor in such various colors dressed;
70
Therefore I well may Queen bee of ye Rest
Therefore I well may queen be of the rest.
71
The Turkiſh Turbants doe inlarg o:r fames
The
Gloss Note
In his Herbal, John Gerard claimed that Turkish people named the tulip because it resembled the headdress that Muslims wore (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 146).
Turkish turbans
do enlarge our fames,
72
And wee are honour’d by A Thousand names
And
Gloss Note
Hundreds of tulip cultivars were named in the early seventeenth century as part of the Dutch phenomenon known as “tulipmania” (Anne Goldgar, Tulipmania: Money, Honor, and Knowledge in the Dutch Golden Age [University of Chicago Press, 2008], p. 107).
we are honored by a thousand names
73
Which would vain Glory bee here to Rehearſe
Which would vainglory be here to rehearse,
74
Seing they are known thoughout
Physical Note
multiple strike-through of “y”
they
Univerſ
Seeing they are known throughout the universe.
75
Beſides my beuty I haue vertue Store
Besides my beauty, I have virtue
Gloss Note
in abundance or reserve
store
;
76
My roots decay’d Nature doth Restore
Gloss Note
Tulips are perennials which restore themselves from their root-like bulbs. Tulip bulbs or roots were also understood to be nutritive: “The roots preserved with sugar, or otherwise dressed, may be eaten, and are no unpleasant nor any way offensive meat, but rather good and nourishing” (John Gerard, The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 147). In View But This Tulip (Emblem 40) [Poem 105] Pulter describes a more technical process by which the tulip’s chemically treated ashes could regenerate the plant itself. If the latter meaning, then “roots” would be a possessive (“roots’”).
My roots decayed nature doth restore
.
77
Then let another Speak that can say more
Then let another speak that can say more.”
The Wallflower or Heartsease
The Wallflower or Heartsease
78
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Wallflower or Hartseaſe 3d
Then
said the Walflower neither Show nor Smel
“Then,” said the Wallflower, “Neither show nor smell
79
Alone (by my content) but vertue bears ye bell
Gloss Note
to my satisfaction
(By my content)
but virtue
Gloss Note
takes the first place, has foremost position, or is the best
bears the bell
;
80
ffor certainly if Sweetnes bore the Sway
For certainly, if sweetness
Gloss Note
ruled or governed; held the highest authority or power
bore the sway
,
81
Then am I Sure to bear the priſe away
Then am I sure to bear the prize away.
if

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82
If Shew,
Physical Note
scribbled out
thy
^my flowers are Statly to behold
If show, my flowers are stately to behold:
83
Som Red, Some White, and Som like burnisht Gould
Some red, some white, and some like burnished gold.
84
But if yo’l give to vertue all her due
But if you’ll give to virtue all her due,
85
My worth doth fare excell my Golden hew
My worth doth far excel my golden hue.
86
Such Rare inherent vertue doth inherrit
Such rare inherent virtue doth
Gloss Note
obtain; succeed as heir; dwell, take up abode
inherit
87
Within my smell by chearing of Mens spirit
Within my smell, by cheering of men’s spirit,
88
All turbulent Paſſions I am known to apeaſe
All turbulent passions I am known to appease,
89
My vulgar nomination being Hearts ease
My
Gloss Note
vernacular (i.e., English) name
vulgar nomination
being
Gloss Note
a name applicable at this time to the wallflower as well as pansy
“Heartsease.”
90
Beſides I doe not for a fitt apeare
Besides, I do not for
Gloss Note
a short period; a sudden and transitory state of activity
a fit
appear,
91
As doth the Tulip but I all the yeare
As doth the Tulip, but I all the year
92
Perfume the Aire to Gardens ad Such grace
Perfume the air, to gardens add such grace
93
That I without preſumption may take place
That I without presumption may take place
94
Aboue the Rest, though not like Tulips painted
Above the rest (though not like tulips
Gloss Note
colored or ornamented, as with paint; sometimes with derogatory connotations related to pretence and deception; sometimes applied to plants (like tulips) with variegated coloring
painted
).
95
ffor beuty never yet made Woman Sainted
For beauty never yet made woman sainted;
96
Tis vertue doth imortalize theire name
’Tis virtue doth immortalize their name,
97
And makes an Aromatick Splendent fame
And makes an aromatic,
Gloss Note
shining brightly; gorgeous, magnificent, beautiful
splendent
fame.
98
About this Orb her numerous names Shee Rings
About
Gloss Note
the earth
this orb
Gloss Note
the Tulip, who “rings” or sounds loudly her multiple names
her
numerous names she rings;
99
So may Euphratus boast her Thousand Springs
So may
Gloss Note
major river in Western Asia, which received water from many sources and rivers
Euphrates
boast her thousand springs.
whilst

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100
Whilst Nil’s head is Ocult, one ownly name
Whilst
Gloss Note
The source of the Nile River in Egypt was not known at this time.
Nile’s head is occult
, one only name
101
Shee glories in yet of Emergent fame
She glories in; yet of emergent fame
102
Shee vapouring, brags that shee is Stuck about
Gloss Note
the Tulip
She
,
Gloss Note
talking in a blustering or bragging manner; in this context, the word hints at the secondary meaning, “an evaporation of moisture”
vaporing
, brags that she is stuck about
103
The
Physical Note
small blot obscures the “c”; possibly a deliberate cancellation
wretched
Turbant of ye
Physical Note
“s” cancelled with a blot
Pagans
Rowt
Gloss Note
The Tulip bragged, above, that she is made famous by being associated with the turbans of Turkish people, whom the Wallflower derides as a heathen “rout” (assembly or crowd).
The wretched turban of the pagan rout
.
104
Such Honor: as diſhonor: I Should Scorn
Such honor as dishonor I should scorn,
105
And Rather choose as I am to bee worn
And rather choose as I am to be worn
106
Upon Som lovely modest, virgins breast
Upon some lovely modest virgin’s breast,
107
Where all the graces doe triumphant Rest
Where all the
Gloss Note
three goddesses who represented intellectual pleasures: beauty, grace, and charm
Graces
do triumphant rest.”
The Lily
The Lily
108
Physical Note
in left margin “The Lilly 4:th
The
lilly Smiled, and Said Shee did admire
The Lily smiled and said she did admire
109
The Walflowers boldnes, and her bold deſire
The Wallflower’s boldness and her bold desire.
110
Becauſe Shee breaths a Suffocateing fume
“Because she breathes a suffocating fume,
111
Must Shee (Ô Strange) aboue the rest peſume
Must she (O strange!) above the rest presume?
112
I am amazed at her arrogance
I am amazéd
Physical Note
“at” in the manuscript
that
her arrogance,
113
Proceeding from her Sorded Ignorance
Proceeding from her sordid ignorance
114
Of others worth makes her extoll her own
Of others’ worth, makes her extol her own;
115
ffor noble vertues trust mee Shee has non
For noble virtues, trust me, she has none.
116
Her colour doth proclaim her Jealoſie
Gloss Note
The Lily argues that the Wallflower’s color, yellow, is associated with jealousy.
Her color doth proclaim her jealousy
,
117
But I’m an Embleme of pure Inocie
But I’m an emblem of pure
Gloss Note
shortened form of “innocency”
inno’cy
.

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118
Spotles my thoughts as Spotles are my leaves
Gloss Note
free from blemish or (figuratively) sin, guilt, or disgrace
Spotless
my thoughts, as spotless are my leaves,
119
While Chastitie her Lover ne’r deceives
While
Gloss Note
The lily was the emblem of chastity and purity.
Chastity
her lover ne’er deceives;
120
And what I wonder were a Virgins due
And what, I wonder, were a virgin’s due,
121
Had not her Skin my Lillies lilly Hue
Had not her skin my lily’s lily hue?
122
Even as the Woodbine wittyly exprest
Gloss Note
Just as
Even as
the Woodbine wittily expressed
123
When Shee compar’d mee to Idalias breast
When she compared me to Idalia’s breast.
124
White are my leaves as Albians Snowey Cliffe
White are my leaves, as
Gloss Note
Albion is an alternative name for England, where the White Cliffs of Dover are located (albus is Latin for white).
Albion’s snowy cliff
,
125
Or higher Alps, or highest Tenerif,
Or
Gloss Note
Mt. Blanc (or “White Mountain”) is the highest mountain in the Alps range of Central Europe. Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands, off West Africa, is dominated by Mt. Teide, Spain’s tallest peak.
higher Alps, or highest Tenerife
;
126
White as the Swans on sweet Hibernias Streams
White as the swans on sweet
Gloss Note
Hibernia is the Latin name for Ireland (where Pulter was born).
Hibernia’s streams
,
127
Or Cinthias bright, or Delias brighter beames
Or
Gloss Note
Cynthia is goddess of the moon and Delius of the sun. “The Oyster and the Mouse” (Emblem 48) [Poem 113] refers to Apollo and Diana as the “Delian twins”; throughout the manuscript, Pulter refers to the male sun god (from Delos) as “Delia,” a name that conventionally identifies the female moon goddess; we have changed to Delius here for clarity.
Cynthia’s bright, or Delius’s brighter beams
.
128
ffor white all other Colours doth excell
For white all other colors doth excel
129
As much as Day doth Night or Heaven doth Hell
As much as day doth night, or Heaven doth Hell.
130
ffor it is chiefly Heavens privation
For it is chiefly Heaven’s privation
131
Makes men in a Hell of desperation
Makes men in a hell of desperation.
132
What are the horrid gloomey Shades of Night
What are the horrid gloomy shades of night
133
But the departure of all quickning Light
But the departure of all-
Gloss Note
life-giving; accelerating
quick’ning
light?
134
And what are coulours reaſon Sa’s not I
And what are colors? Reason says, not I,
135
Nothing but want of my white puritie
Gloss Note
In answer to the preceding question, Reason replies that colors are nothing but the lack (“want”) of whiteness.
Nothing but want of my white purity
.
I

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136
I here could
Physical Note
appears crowded into space between surrounding words, possibly in different hand from main scribe
I
brag but ^will not of the feast
I here could brag, but will not, of the feast
137
The Percians
Physical Note
two or three letters, starting with “H,” scribbled out
[H?d]
^make this Hono:rs mee ye least
Gloss Note
The Persian duke of Shiraz held an annual feast of lilies lasting 180 days (Eardley).
The Persians make
: this honors me the least
138
Of all the Rest: of vertues I may boast
Of all
Gloss Note
all her other honors
the rest
. Of virtues I may boast,
139
ffor if my Roots they doe but boyl or Roast
For if my roots they do but boil or roast,
140
And them to pestilenciall Sores apply
And them to
Gloss Note
plague-infected
pestilential
sores apply,
141
Probatum est, it cures them instantly
Gloss Note
This Latin phrase (“it is proven”) was commonly attached to medical recipes, indicating that they were effective.
Probatum est
: it cures them instantly.
142
But my Antagonest here of the Wall
But
Gloss Note
the Wallflower
my antagonist here of the wall
143
In such a time’s away thrown flowers & all
In such a time’s away thrown, flowers and all.”
The Rose
The Rose
144
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Rose 5:th
At
this ye Blood flush’d in ye Roſes face
At this, the blood flushed in the Rose’s face
145
To heare the Lilly Speake in her diſgrace
To hear the Lily speak in
Gloss Note
The phrasing is ambiguous: the Rose can mean that the Lily has disgraced herself in making prideful and false claims, or that the Lily has dishonored the Rose by declaring superiority over other flowers.
her
disgrace.
146
As Shee then Said, whoſe pride was grown So high
As she then said, “Whose pride was grown so high
147
That Shee preſumes to boast Virginitie
That she presumes to boast virginity,
148
Though Scorn’d by all, dareing to Shew her face
Though scorned by all? Daring to show her face
149
And plead precedencie and I in place
Gloss Note
The sense here continues from the last sentence: the rose castigates the lily, universally scorned, for claiming superiority when the rose is present.
And plead precedency (and I in place)
,
150
When in each lovly Maid and Cloris cheek
When in each lovely maid and
Gloss Note
Chloris is the goddess of flowers and spring. Here the Rose refers to the common poetic description of beautiful women as having cheeks like roses.
Chloris’s
cheek
151
I conquer her, her leaves I know are sleek
I conquer her? Her leaves I know are sleek,
and

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152
And Soe are mine, shee brags ^on Such a fashion
And so are mine! She brags on such a fashion
153
As if Light, Vertue, Joy, were but privation
As if light, virtue, joy, were but
Gloss Note
The rose critiques the lily’s claim that her whiteness–which the rose sees as a lack or “privation” of color–embodies the ideals of light, virtue, and joy.
privation
,
154
As if an unwrit Volume were the best
As if an unwrit volume were the best,
155
Before Heavens loue were in the leaves expre’st
Before Heaven’s love were in the leaves expressed.
156
I’me Sleighted now but in the former Age
I’m
Gloss Note
treated with indifference or disrespect
slighted
now, but in the former age
157
I conſecrated was to Epic^rage
I consecrated was to
Gloss Note
epicureanism, the philosophy of Epicurus, a Greek thinker who held that the senses provided the sole criterion of truth and who saw pleasure as the highest human goal
epic’rage
;
158
When liber paters wine and wit ore flowes
When
Gloss Note
Italian god of wine and fertility (associated with Bacchus)
Liber Pater’s
wine and wit o’erflows,
159
Non dares to speak but underneath the Roſe
None dares to speak but
Gloss Note
an expression for being sealed in silence, or sub rosa (Latin), sometimes connected to the secrecy of love
underneath the rose
.
160
And certainly my flowers were in Request
And certainly my flowers were in request
161
When those Heroyick houſes in theire crest
When
Gloss Note
the warring aristocratic “houses” (families) of York and Lancaster in England, whose symbols were, respectively the white and red rose, and whose fifteenth-century battle for power was called “The War of the Roses”
those heroic houses
in their crest
162
Did Stick my Roſe; York gloryed in the white
Did stick my rose: York gloried in the white;
163
Great Lancaster did in the Red delight
Great Lancaster did in the red delight.
164
But as my fame, Soe it increaſ’d my woe
But as my fame, so it increased my woe
165
To see or: feilds with pricely blood or’e flow
To see our fields with princely blood o’erflow.
166
Ney more thee Orient Kingdoms to my praiſe
Nay more, the Orient kingdoms to my praise
167
In Hono:r of my Birth keepe fowerteen dayes
Gloss Note
unidentified ritual or custom
In honor of my birth keep fourteen days
,
168
And in
Physical Note
the “c” is crowded between the “s” and “k”
Damasckus
yearly they diſtill
And in Damascus yearly they distill
169
As much Roſewater as will drive a Mill
Gloss Note
Damascus was a production center for rosewater, a staple in foods and medicines. Robert Burton writes of “those hot countries, about Damascus, where ... many hogsheads of Rosewater are to be sold in the market, it is in so great request with them” (The Anatomy of Melancholy [Oxford, 1621], p. 309).
As much rosewater as will drive a mill
.
170
Doe but observe when as the virgin crew
Do but observe when as the virgin crew
171
Comes to this Garden (newly Pearl’d w:th Dew)
Comes to this garden (newly pearled with dew)
to

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172
To make their Anadems they ^fill their laps
To make their
Gloss Note
flowery wreaths for the head
anadems
: they fill their laps
173
With other flowers; betwixt their Snowey paps
With other flowers; betwixt their snowy
Gloss Note
breasts
paps
174
I am triumphant, on that Ivory Throne
I am triumphant. On that ivory throne
175
I Sit envied of all uſurp’d of none
I sit envied of all, usurped of none.
176
Somtime I Slide into that milkey vale
Sometime I slide into that milky vale
177
Between those Snowey hills cal’d Cupids Dale
Between those snowy hills called Cupid’s dale.
178
There freely I those living Cherries kiſs
There freely I those living cherries kiss;
179
Lillys looke payle in envy of my Bliſs
Lilies look pale in envy of my bliss.
180
Then seeing I of all am most in grace
Then seeing I of all am most in grace
181
With your Sweet Sex give mee ye chiefest place
With your sweet sex, give me the chiefest place.
182
Here if list, to boast my Heavenly Birth
Here,
Gloss Note
if desiring or longing
if list
to boast my heavenly birth,
183
I could declare not Sprung from Dunghill Earth
I could
Gloss Note
i.e., declare myself not
declare not
sprung from dunghill earth
184
Physical Note
in left margin
as
Aborigins, I and the fruitfull Rice
As
Gloss Note
the earliest known inhabitants of a particular country; the plants or animals indigenous to a place, native flora or fauna
Aborigines
; I and the fruitful rice,
185
To inrich Mankind dropt Down frown Paradice
To enrich mankind,
Gloss Note
In Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique, Thomas Herbert recounts a legend in which Muhammad is transported to Heaven, where meeting the Almighty causes him to sweat drops of water which transform into a rose, grain of rice and four learned men (London, 1638), p. 26.
dropped down from paradise
.
186
Witnes the Alcoron where alſoe tis Said
Witness the
Gloss Note
archaic name for the Qur’an, the Islamic sacred book, believed to be the word of God as dictated to Muhammad
Alcoran
, where also, ’tis said,
187
By Smelling to a Rose that bleſſed Maid
By smelling to a rose
Gloss Note
the Virgin Mary. As Eardley notes, in A Relation of Some Years’ Travel, Thomas Herbert claims that the Virgin Mary conceived when given a rose to smell by the angel Gabriel (London, 1634), p. 153.
that blessed maid
188
Brought forth a Son, a wonder to Rehearſe
Brought forth a son, a wonder to
Gloss Note
describe
rehearse
,
189
The Sole Restorer of the Univerſ
The sole restorer of the universe.
190
Looke at those Nuptials where you may behold
Look at those nuptials where you may behold
191
The Stately Structure Shine w:th burnish’d Gold
The stately structure shine with burnished gold,
the

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192
The gorgious Chamber and the Bride ale bread
The gorgeous chamber and the
Gloss Note
A “bride ale” was a wedding banquet, where roses could be strewn on the table; Eardley amends to “bridal bed,” where roses could also be strewn.
bride ale bread
193
With Roſes, and noe other flowers is Spread
With roses and no other flowers is spread;
194
And Still injoying Lovers youthfull brow’s
And
Critical Note
The phrase is not hyphenated in the manuscript. Without the hyphen, the word “still” might indicate a sense of “always” (to indicate that joyous lovers are always rose-crowned). With the hyphen, the phrase might suggest that the lovers enjoy something (presumably, each other) on an ongoing or perpetual basis; or that the lovers enjoy stillness, signifying secrecy, quiet, or silence (perhaps especially in conjunction with the noiseless yet expressive flowers that they wear).
still-enjoying
lovers’ youthful brows
195
Are with my Roſes Crownd and Mertle Bowes
Are with my roses crowned and myrtle boughs.
196
Observe the Riſeing Lustre of the Morn
Observe the rising luster of the morn,
197
How Shee with Roſes doth her head adorn
How she with roses doth her head adorn:
198
Aboue the rest, I’m Honoured by Aurora
Above the rest I’m honored by Aurora
199
And by my Patrones faire louly fflora
And by my patroness, fair lovely Flora.
200
I’m Soe much favoured that noe flower but I
I’m so much favored that no flower but I
201
Between her Snowey breast doth dare to lye
Between her snowy breasts doth dare to lie.
202
Beſides the bevty and
Physical Note
“y” imperfectly erased
they
Sweet delight
Besides the beauty and the sweet delight,
203
My flowers yield my vertue’s infinite
My flowers yield my
Gloss Note
healing properties; as the next line indicates, roses were ingredients in numerous curatives that could affect the body, which was imagined to consist of four humors that needed to be balanced. One method of balance was purgation, or letting forth fluids; another was introducing a cooling agent.
virtues
infinite.
204
I coole, I Purge, I Comfort, and Restore
I cool, I purge, I comfort, and restore;
205
Then who I wonder can desire more
Then who, I wonder, can desire more?
206
If for the worthiest you the priſe reſerve
If for the worthiest you the prize reserve,
207
The chiefest place I’m Sure I doe deserve
The chiefest place I’m sure I do deserve.
The Poppy
The Poppy
208
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Poppy 6:th
The
Gaudy Poppy lift her head aloft
The gaudy Poppy
Gloss Note
lifted
lift
her head aloft,
209
Saying in earnest I haue wondred oft
Saying in earnest, “I have wondered oft
210
To See the Roſe Soe fild w:th pride and Scorn
To see the rose so filled with pride and scorn,
211
As if an Orient
Physical Note
multiple strike-through
Cinder
^tincture did adorn
As if an
Gloss Note
A tincture is a cosmetic coloring, figuratively, a stain, a blemish, or a specious appearance; “orient” refers to the red color of dawn.
orient tincture
did adorn
noe

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212
Noe Cheek but hers, becauſe Shees always worn
No cheek but hers, because she’s always worn
213
Oh how I
Physical Note
“t” is written over a “d”
Loth’t
betwixt the Sweaty paps
(O how I
Gloss Note
loathe it
loath’t
) betwixt the sweaty paps!
214
Physical Note
“Or” in different hand from main scribe; “Or” blotted
Or \Or\
elce Shees thrust into the Dirty laps
Or else she’s thrust into the dirty laps
215
Of wanton
Physical Note
“ff” written over another letter, possibly an “S”
fflurts
, better out Shine
Physical Note
“y” blotted
they
Day
Of wanton flirts! Better outshine the day
216
As I doe, and my bevty to diſplay
As I do, and my beauty to display
217
Unto the Gaizing wondring Paſſer by
Unto the gazing, wond’ring passerby,
218
Who Stands amazed at my variety
Who stands amazed at my variety.
219
Shee brags the Ciprian Lady loves her best
She brags the
Gloss Note
Venus, goddess of love, born in Cyprus
Cyprian lady
loves her best,
220
But did Shee ever give a Goddes Rest
But did she ever
Gloss Note
Poppies were used in treatments for inducing sleep.
give a goddess rest
,
221
As I haue don, when over watch’d w:th grief
As I have done? When
Gloss Note
fatigued with excessive watching, or wearied by being kept from sleep
overwatched
with grief
222
Great Ceris was, by Sleep I gave reliefe
Great
Gloss Note
goddess of earth, grain, and fertility
Ceres
was, by sleep I gave relief
223
Unto her tired Spirit when Shee ran after
Unto her tired spirit when she ran after
224
That black browed Knave that Stole away her ^Daughter
That
Gloss Note
scowling, frowning, or dark-faced
black-browed
Gloss Note
Pluto, who kidnapped Ceres’s daughter, Proserpina, and made her queen of the underworld
knave that stole away her daughter
.
225
If shee of Colour boast then soe may I
If she of color boast, then so may I:
226
What flowers At distance more delights ye eye
What flowers at distance more delights the eye?
227
And where Shee brags of Uſhering in Aurora
And where she brags of ushering in Aurora,
228
And dreſſing of the head of dainty fflora
And dressing of the head of dainty Flora,
229
Tis true I doe not tend upon the Morn
’Tis true I do not tend upon the morn,
230
Yet doe I Cloris ^youthfull Robe adorn
Yet do I Chloris’s youthful robe adorn
as

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231
As well as Shee, and when Nights Silence Queen
As well as she; and when Night, silent queen,
232
Triumphant in her Ebone Coach is Seen
Triumphant in her
Gloss Note
black
ebon
coach, is seen,
233
I Strow her Paths as Shee doth Conquering Ride
Gloss Note
Poppies were associated generally with sleep, rest, and dreaming. The mythological Hypnos, son of Night (or Nyx) had poppies growing outside his cave.
I strew her paths as she doth conquering ride
.
234
What flower I wonder dares doe soe beſide
What flower, I wonder, dares do so beside?
235
And when in Soft and Downey Armes
And when in soft and downy arms
236
Shee Lullabyes the World with potent Charms
Gloss Note
Night
She
lullabies the world with potent charms,
237
The vapour of my fflowers doth Slyly creep
The vapor of my flowers doth slyly creep
238
To troubled Mortals cauſing them to Sleep
To troubled mortals, causing them to sleep.
239
I would our Arbitratris would but take
I would our
Gloss Note
female arbiter or judge
arbitratrix
would but take
240
My flowers or Seed I’m confident t’would make
My flowers or seed: I’m confident ’twould make
241
Her sleep and rest ^& Dreams by fare more quiet
Her sleep and rest and dreams by far more quiet
242
Then Paracelſus rules or Leſhes Dyet
Than
Gloss Note
Paracelsus (1493–1541) was a Swiss physician and chemist who saw illness as having an external cause rather than arising as a result of an imbalance in the body's humors. He recommended chemical remedies (or “rules”) for achieving health.
Paracelsus’s rules
or
Gloss Note
Leonard Lessius (1554–1623) was a Flemish Jesuit theologian who wrote about diet and health.
Lessius’s diet
.
243
Ney more, more Seeds one of my Poppies bear
Nay, more: more seeds one of my poppies bear
244
Then in A Hundred Gardens Roſes are
Than in a hundred gardens roses are!
245
I can but laugh at that Redicalous dreame
I can but laugh at that ridiculous dream
246
Of Springing
Physical Note
“of” struck-through twice horizontally; “from” in H2.
offrom
that Grand impostors Steame
Of springing from
Gloss Note
Muhammad’s sweat, as noted above, was reputed to be the origin of the rose, according to Thomas Herbert (Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique [London, 1638], p. 26.)
that grand impostor’s steam
!
247
Physical Note
“Such” blotted; “ſuch,” inserted directly above, in different hand from main scribe
Such\ſuch \
foppiries I credit Shall as Soon
Such
Gloss Note
foolishnesses; things foolishly esteemed or venerated
fopperies
I credit shall as soon
248
As that he hollowed ^down ye Splendent Moon
Gloss Note
The Qur’an attributes Muhammad with the miracle of splitting the Moon. To “hollow” is to bend into a hollow or concave shape; “hallo,” meaning to incite by shouting (a verb Pulter uses in “The Center” [Poem 30]), could also be signified here.
As that he hollowed down the splendent Moon
.
249
O mee what Solifidien can believe
O me, what
Gloss Note
person who believes faith alone ensures salvation
solifidian
can believe
250
That hee Should ^put one halfe into his Sleeve
That
Gloss Note
Muhammad; after miraculously causing the Moon to split, Muhammad was reported to put half the Moon in his sleeve and to have sent the other half to the garden of Ali, his cousin and son-in-law, referenced in the next line. This story is recounted in Thomas Herbert’s Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique (London, 1638), p. 259.
he
should put one half into his sleeve,
the

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251
The other made A Zone for Mortis Alley
The other made a zone for
Gloss Note
Ali was Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law; “Mortis” is a title meaning “beloved by God,” derived from “Mortadi” or “Mortada.”
Mortis Ali
?
252
Thus with their ffaith these Mercerents doe ^dalley
Thus with their faith these
Gloss Note
unbelievers, infidels or scoundrels; the manuscript has “mercerents,” which Eardley amends as “miscreants.”
miscreants
do dally!
253
Then I conclude Shee vertue wants or fame
Then, I conclude,
Gloss Note
the Rose either lacks (one sense of “wants”) virtue or honor (one sense of “fame”), since she boasts of shameful things, or desires (another sense of “wants”) a bad reputation or infamy (another sense of “fame”).
she virtue wants or fame
,
254
Boasting of that which I Should count my Shame
Boasting of that which I should count my shame.
255
Let mee and mine riſe from the new plow’d earth
Let me and mine rise from the new-plowed earth
256
While Shee proclaims her excremencious birth.
While she proclaims her
Gloss Note
having to do with excreted bodily substances; here, a reference to the Rose’s Qur’an-based account of her birth from Mohammad’s sweat; see the note on “dropped down from paradise,” above
excrementous
birth.”
The Violet
The Violet
257
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Violet 7:th
The
Bashfull Violet then her head upheav’s
The bashful violet then her head upheaves,
258
Shee being vailed or’e before w:th leaves
She being veiled o’er before with leaves.
259
Then Sighing forth a coole and Sweet perfume
Then, sighing forth a cool and sweet perfume,
260
Shee Said the Poppie did too much preſume
She said the Poppy did too much presume;
261
Then trickling down a teare (ah me Shee Said)
Then, trickling down a tear, “Ah me,” she said,
262
I well Remember when I was a Maid
“I well remember when I was a maid,
263
My bevty did a deietie inflame
Gloss Note
Robert Herrick writes of a poetic tradition in which Love (Venus) was “wrangling … / Whether the violets should excel, / Or she, in sweetest scent. / But Venus having lost the day, poor girls, she fell on you; / And beat ye so (as some dare say) / Her blows did make ye blue.” Hesperides (London, 1648), p. 119.
My beauty did a deity inflame
;
264
And must I now (Ô strange) contend for fame
And must I now (O strange!) contend for
Gloss Note
good reputation, honor
fame
?
265
Let me not breath her pride doth me confound
Let me not breathe;
Gloss Note
presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
her
pride doth me confound.
266
I was a Lady once for beavty Crownd
I was a lady once, for beauty crowned,
267
Till Delia did unlooſe my virgin Zone
Till
Gloss Note
here, Apollo, the sun god (more usually called Delius, because he was from the island of Delos). René Rapin’s poem on gardens shows the violet pursued by the amorous Apollo; whether Rapin was Pulter’s source is not clear. Hortorum, first published in Latin (Paris, 1665), was first translated and printed in English in 1672 (as Of Gardens[,] Four Books First Written in Latin Verse by Renatus Rapinus; see pages 16-18 on the violet).
Delia
did
Gloss Note
i.e., the sun god loosened or removed the violet’s belt or girdle
unloose my virgin zone
;
268
Since when in Silent Shades I make my mone
Since when, in silent shades I make my moan;
yet

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269
Yet Sure for Shame my face I need not cover
Yet sure for shame my face I need not cover.
270
Who would not Glory in Soe brave a lover
Who would not glory in so brave a lover?
271
And in our Umpires love I well may rest
And in our umpire’s love I well may rest,
272
Shee uſeing oft to wear me in her breast
She using oft to wear me in her breast;
273
But as for you, you ne’r attain’d that grace
But as for
Gloss Note
presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
you
, you ne’er attained that grace
274
Her to adorn, or in her Houſe had place
Gloss Note
the “umpire” mentioned three lines earlier, who is also the poem’s first speaker
Her
to adorn, or in her house had place,
275
ffor none her Loathſom Savour can abide
For none
Gloss Note
the Poppy
her
loathsome savor can abide,
276
Unles by her they would be stupified
Unless by her they would be
Gloss Note
a reference to the Poppy’s power to put people to sleep or to dull their senses.
stupefied
.
277
Were here not others of more worth then Shee
Were here not others of more worth than she,
278
I need not strive the priſe would fall to mee
I need not strive: the prize would fall to me.
279
Nocturna favours her Shee doth pretend
Gloss Note
the goddess of night
Nocturna
favors her, she doth pretend;
280
And must Shee therefore all ye Rest transcend
And must she therefore all the rest transcend?
281
That old deformed, Purblind Slut, wants Sight
That old deforméd,
Gloss Note
The violet insults Nocturna, the goddess of night, as someone “purblind” (meaning dim-sighted or dim-witted) and a slut (a woman with slovenly habits, person of low character, or impudent girl).
purblind slut
wants sight
282
To Judg of bevty; or at least wants light
To judge of beauty, or at least wants light.
283
But I perfume the Air with fair Aurora
But I perfume the air with fair Aurora,
284
And grace the paps, and Robes of lovly fflora
And grace the paps and robes of lovely Flora.
285
Shee tels long Stories of the Ravished Queen
Gloss Note
the Poppy
She
tells long stories of the ravished queen
286
Of Eribus, in this her pride is Seen
Of
Gloss Note
Erebus is the dark classical underworld, Hades; the previous line refers to Persephone, who was abducted (or ravished) and taken to the underworld by Pluto (or Hades).
Erebus
; in this her pride is seen.
287
I wonder at her Arogance and Madnes
I wonder at her arrogance and madness,
288
To Dream of cureing our Deſiders Sadnes
To dream of curing our
Gloss Note
The speaker, who confesses her sadness near the poem’s opening, is acting as the judge or “decider” of the debate. References to “her” in the next seven lines are to the speaker.
decider’s
sadness,
when

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289
When her sad heart’s Soe overchargd w:th grief
When her sad heart’s so overcharged with grief
290
That Phisicks Art can give her noe Relief
That
Gloss Note
medicine's
physic’s
art can give her no relief.
291
ffor I haue heard her often Sighing Say
For I have heard her often, sighing, say
292
Nothing would ease her but her Dying Day
Nothing would ease her but her dying day;
293
Nothing would cure her till ye Dead did Riſe
Nothing would cure her till the dead did rise
294
In Glory, then and not before, her eyes
In glory; then and not before, her eyes
295
would ceaſe for Sin and Sorrow to or’eflow
Would cease for sin and sorrow to o’erflow.
296
But after her my Paſſsion must not goe
Gloss Note
The Violet declares that her “passion,” or zealous aim (here, to be ranked first among flowers), must not go “after” the Poppy’s, or come behind her in the ranking.
But after her my passion must not go
.
297
Although I am not like the Poppie pied
Although I am not like the poppy
Gloss Note
variable, speckled with color, flawed
pied
,
298
Yet is my vest in Princely purple dyed
Yet is my vest in princely purple dyed,
299
And in thoſe Coulours that Adorn ye Skie
And in those colors that adorn the sky,
300
Then which?
Physical Note
doubly struck-through, scribbled cancellation of two words, possibly “none is”
[?]
non is more pleasing to ye eye
Than which none is more pleasing to the eye.
301
In Sicknes and in health I am respected
In sickness and in health I am respected;
302
Then let me not (for Shame) be now neglected
Then let me not (for shame) be now neglected.
303
The Poppie Sa’s Shee Rocks ye World a Sleep
The Poppy says she rocks the world asleep,
304
And braging, Such a Racket Shee doth keep
And, bragging, such a racket she doth keep
305
That Shee forgets (I am afraid) the Duty
That she forgets (I am afraid) the duty
306
That all doe ow to vertue and to Bevty
That all do vow to virtue and to beauty.
the

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The Heliotrope
The Heliotrope
307
Physical Note
to left, in margin: “The Helitropia 8:th”; beneath, “Sunflower” and curved, doubly-crossed flourish, with indiscernible pen markings to left
The
Physical Note
superscript “u” written over other letter
Heliotropium
then began to vapour
The
Gloss Note
a name given to plants of which the flowers turn so as to follow the sun; in early times applied to the sunflower and marigold
Heliotropium
then began to
Gloss Note
to use language as light or unsubstantial as vapor; to talk fantastically, grandiloquently, or boastingly; to rise up
vapor
,
308
Saying I vow, by yonder blazing Tapor
Saying, “I vow, by yonder blazing
Gloss Note
a candle, used here as a metaphor for the sun
taper
309
Which gives to all both light and influence
Which gives to all both light and influence,
310
I am confounded at her impudence
I am confounded at
Gloss Note
the Violet’s
her
impudence!”
311
Then Stareing on the Sun, behold Shee Said
Then, staring on the sun, “Behold,” she said,
312
To view his fulgent face I’m not afraid
“To view his
Gloss Note
radiant; glittering; resplendent; bright shining
fulgent
face I’m not afraid;
313
When hee in pride and Splendour doth ariſe
When he in pride and splendor doth arise,
314
Unto the Orient I throw
Physical Note
imperfectly erased “ne” visible afterward, and dot over “y” signalling alteration of earlier “i”
my
Eyes
Unto
Gloss Note
the east; dawn
the orient
I throw my eyes;
315
And as he mounts up the Olympick Hill
And as he mounts up the
Gloss Note
Mount Olympus, the home of the gods of ancient Greece
Olympic hill
,
316
With amorous glances I pursue him Still
With amorous glances I pursue him still;
317
And when hee’s Zenith I as tis my duty
And when
Gloss Note
at his highest point
he’s zenith
, I, as ’tis my duty,
318
Am fixt admireing his Refulgent bevty
Am fixed admiring his
Gloss Note
radiant, resplendent, lustrous, glorious or sumptuous
refulgent
beauty;
319
But when he doth deſcend to Tetheus deep
But when he doth descend to
Gloss Note
Tethys was a Titan in Greek mythology who produced the Oceanides (water goddesses) with her brother, Oceanus (a personification of the ocean). In the manuscript, the name is “Tetheus.”
Tethyss’s
deep,
320
To part with him in Golden tears I weep
To part with him in golden tears I weep;
321
But Shee (poore Girle) an uregarded flower
But she (poor girl), an unregarded flower,
322
To vew his his Raidient face hath not the power
To view his radiant face hath not the power;
323
But in Som Silent, Sad, neglected Shades
But in some silent, sad, neglected shades
324
Shee (deſpic[e]able
Physical Note
“S” in lighter ink
Shee
) Buds, Blooms, & fades;
She (despicable she) buds, blooms, and fades,
325
Whilst I unto the wondring World diſplay
Whilst I unto the wondering world display
326
My beuty, createing createing either night or day
My beauty, creating either night or day;
when

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327
When I contract my leaves my love his Light
When I contract my leaves,
Gloss Note
Apollo, the sun god
my love
his light,
328
Then all this Globe’s involved in horrid Night
Then all this globe’s involved in horrid night;
329
But when wee doe our Golden Curles unfold
But when we do our golden curls unfold,
330
All are exhillerated to behold
All are exhilarated to behold
331
Our love and light, I wonder Shee Should dare
Our love and light. I wonder she should dare
332
With Phœbus famous favorite to compare
With
Gloss Note
Phœbus was another name for Apollo, the sun.
Phœbus’s
famous favorite to compare.
333
Most foolishly Shee vaunts her Birth is high
Most foolishly she vaunts her birth is high,
334
And that her Robes are dipt in Tirian die
And that her robes are dipped in
Gloss Note
a purple dye, associated with the ancient Phœnician city Tyre, where it was made
Tyrian dye
;
335
When as the vesture which my limbs
Physical Note
“u” corrects earlier “i”
unfold
When as the
Gloss Note
clothing or apparel; also, anything that grows upon the land
vesture
which my limbs unfold
336
Are Youthfull green ffring’d w:th burniſh’d Gold
Are youthful green, fringéd with burnished gold.
337
Shee Brags the female Sex esteem her best
She brags the female sex esteem her best
338
And ^
Physical Note
“t” is superscript to superscript “y”
yt
Shee Sits Triumphant on their brest
And that she sits triumphant on their breast.
339
A rush I care not for that Scornfull crue
A
Gloss Note
something of little or no value or importance (derived from common plants used to cover floors, among other uses)
rush
I care not for that scornful crew,
340
For And ^did \ I grow as fare aboue their view
For did I grow as far above their view
341
As from their Reach trust me I Should rejoyce
As from their reach, trust me, I should rejoice;
342
ffor braue Hiperion is my Souls ſole choice
For brave
Gloss Note
Hyperion is sometimes an epithet for the mythological sun god; he was the father of Helios (the Sun).
Hyperion
is my soul’s sole choice.
343
Shee says my loue her Ceston did untie
She says my love her
Gloss Note
obsolete form of “cestus,” meaning belt
ceston
did untie
344
But now he Scorns on her to cast an eye
But now he scorns on her to cast an eye,
345
Cauſe enviously Shee made Lucothia dye
’Cause enviously
Gloss Note
The Heliotrope recasts the conventional myth, in which not the violet (the “she” here) but the Heliotrope herself, in her prior form as the nymph Clytie, envied Leucothoe, for whom Helios, the sun god, had abandoned her. Leucothoe’s father made her die in the original telling.
she made Leucothoe die
ere

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346
Er’e Since he hath Refuſed her wanton Bed
E’er since he hath refused her wanton bed,
347
Since when aſhamed Shee hides her guilty Head
Since when, ashamed, she hides her guilty head.
348
Shee vaunts that Shee perfumes ye breath of fflora
She vaunts that she perfumes the breath of Flora;
349
Som dreſs the Golden Treſſes of Aurora
Some dress the golden tresses of Aurora;
350
Some of the Goddeſſes tels tedious Storyes
Some of the goddesses tells tedious stories,
351
And fondly think to Shine by others gloryes
And
Gloss Note
foolishly
fondly
think to shine by others’ glories;
352
Som of the Elucian Lady wonders tell
Some of the
Gloss Note
a reference to the Eleusinian mystery cult associated with the goddesses Demeter and Persphone, and originating with the goddess Eileithyia
Eleusian lady
wonders tell,
353
And others fetch persephone from Hell
And others fetch Persephone from Hell;
354
Som of faire Eriſinas favour brag
Some of fair
Gloss Note
Venus's
Erycina’s
favor brag,
355
And Acharons wife yt Antick black browed Hag
And
Gloss Note
In Greek mythology, Acheron’s wife is Orphne, who is associated with darkness (and thus “black-browed”).
Acheron’s wife
with
Gloss Note
grotesque, distorted
antic
Gloss Note
dark-browed or -faced; frowning, scowling
black-browed
hag;
356
Thus they for trophis rak hell and Night
Thus they for trophies
Gloss Note
“rak,” the spelling in the manuscript, might signify “rack” (to stretch, torture, or or pull apart) or “rake” (to search, gather by scraping).
rake
Hell and night
357
Whilst I Stand glorying in ye God of Light.
Whilst I stand glorying in the God of Light.
The Auricula
The Auricula
358
Physical Note
In left margin: “The Auricola 9:th
The
Physical Note
the “u” is cramped between the “A” and “r”
Auricola
in brave Thamancious hew
The Auricula, in brave
Gloss Note
“Thaumantias” was an epithet for Iris, the goddess of the rainbow, which suggests that Pulter alludes here to the Auricula’s variegated colors (see Frances E. Dolan’s Amplified Edition of this poem)
Thaumantias’s hue
,
359
Whoſe Shadowed Robes
Physical Note
insertion marks and “w” in different hand from main scribe; first “e” written over “a”
\w\ere
Di’mond ore w:th Dew
Whose shadowed robes were diamoned o’er with dew,
360
ffrom her bright eyes let fall a Shower of tears
From her bright eyes let fall a shower of tears
361
Which hung like pendent Pearls about her ears
Which hung like pendant pearls about her ears;
362
Then Shakeing of her Head Shee Said
Physical Note
“H” imperfectly erased; first “a” appears written over prior “e”
Halas
!
Then, shaking of her head, she said, “Alas!
363
Why? doe I live to See this com to pas
Why do I live to see this come to pass?
364
Why? did the impartiall Parces twist my thred
Why did the impartial
Gloss Note
Roman name for the Fates, the three goddesses of human destiny
Parcae
twist my thread?
365
Physical Note
in left margin: “Why”
ffrom
the Chaos did I lift my head
Why from the chaos did I lift my head?
wer't

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366
Were’t not for the inevitable Laws
Were’t not for the inevitable laws
367
Of Destinie, I wo’d Shrink into my cauſs
Of destiny, I would shrink into my
Gloss Note
place or material of origin
cause
,
368
And rather makt my choyce to be nighted
And rather make it my choice to be nighted
369
Eternally, then live to bee thus Sleighted
Eternally, than live to be thus slighted.
370
Ney I had rather choose Annihiliation
Nay, I had rather choose annihilation
371
Then hear the fflos Solis ostentation
Then hear the
Gloss Note
sunflower’s
Flos Solis’s
ostentation!
372
Here’s many gallant flowers conscious bee
Here’s many
Gloss Note
gorgeous, showy, attractive in appearance; fashionable; excellent, splendid
gallant
flowers conscious be
373
Of their own wants, which Silent Stand you See
Of their own
Gloss Note
lacks, shortcomings
wants
, which silent stand (you see)
374
And yet have infinitely more worth then ſhee
And yet have infinitely more worth than she!
375
Yet wee must all Stand mute to hear her prattle:
Yet we must all stand mute to hear her prattle:
376
Dear heart! How my ears tingle w:th her
Physical Note
after this line, half a blank page, with poem continuing on next page
tattle
.
Dear heart! How my ears tingle with her
Physical Note
After this line is half a blank page, with the poem continuing on the next page.
tattle
.

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The Flower-De-Luce
The Flower-De-Luce
377
Physical Note
in left margin: “The fflower Deluce 10:th
The
Calcidonian Iris then adrest
The
Gloss Note
Caledonia was the Roman name for northern Britain, later applied poetically to Scotland, which featured the fleur-de-lis (Pulter’s Flower-De-Luce) in its royal arms.
Caledonian Iris
then addressed
378
Her Selfe to Speake, being choſen by ye rest
Herself to speak, being chosen by the rest,
379
And Said I would this tryall were in ffrance
And said, “I would this trial were in France,
380
ffor there my favourets I could all advance
For there my favorites I could all advance;
381
ffor in the Kings paternall Coat I’me born
For in
Gloss Note
the old French royal coat of arms, on which the fleur-de-lis (here, the Flower-De-Luce) appears
the king’s paternal coat
I’m borne,
382
And being tranſplanted my brave fflowers adorn
And, being transplanted, my brave flowers adorn
383
And luster ad to the Emperiall race
And luster add to
Gloss Note
royal families in general
the imperial race
:
384
England, Navarr, Peadmount, my fflowers Grace
Gloss Note
territories which featured the fleur-de-lis in their arms
England, Navarre, Piedmont
my flowers grace.
385
The Callidonian Lion is protected
The
Gloss Note
on the Scottish royal arms, a lion within a border decorated with the fleur-de-lis
Caledonian lion
is protected
386
By mee alone, must I then ^be neglected
By me alone; must I then be neglected?
387
What do’th availe? y:t I from Heaven came down
What doth avail that I from Heaven came down
388
To stick my flower Deluces in the Crown:
To stick my flower-de-luces in the crown
389
Of ffamous Clodoneus if I must
Of famous
Gloss Note
Clovis (466-511), king of the Franks, who was (according to legend) given the fleur-de-lis at his baptism by Mary (mother of Jesus Christ).
Clodoneus
? If I must
390
Give place to these then let mee turn to Dust
Give place to
Gloss Note
the other flowers in the garden
these
, then let me turn to dust!
391
ffor trust mee I had rather bee Calcind
For trust me, I had rather be
Gloss Note
burnt to ash or dust; purified or refined by consuming the grosser part
calcined
392
Then live and bee by Mounteneers outſhind
Than live and be by
Gloss Note
i.e., wild flowers growing in the mountains, as the auricula (who spoke last) does; the term could also suggest ignorant or uneducated people
mountaineers
outshined.
393
What boots it mee? that all the World doth know
Gloss Note
i.e., “What does it matter to me” or “What good does it do me”
What boots it me
that all the world doth know
394
My Princely vesture’s like the Heavenly Bow
My princely vesture’s like
Gloss Note
rainbow
the heavenly bow
,
395
Great Junos Legate, on whose Shineing brest
Great
Gloss Note
Iris was the messenger (“legate”) of Juno, mythological queen of the gods
Juno’s legate
, on whose shining breast
396
Heavens Loue in Dewey
Physical Note
“r” and insertion marks in different hand from main scribe
Char\r\acters
exprest
Gloss Note
In the Bible, God created a rainbow as a covenant that he would never flood the Earth again (see Genesis 9:12-17).
Heaven’s love in dewy character’s expressed?
what

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397
What doth’t advantage mee to bear her name;
What
Gloss Note
i.e., “doth it” or “does it”
doth’t
advantage me to bear
Gloss Note
Iris’s; while “lis” in “fleur-de-lis” means “lily,” the design more closely resembles an iris
her
name,
398
If I with Such as these must Strive for ffame
If I with such as
Gloss Note
the other flowers
these
must strive for
Gloss Note
good reputation, honor
fame
?
399
What gain I? that my
Physical Note
apostrophe and “s” appear crowded between surrounding words in different hand from main scribe
root’s
a choyce perfume
What gain I that
Gloss Note
Orris root, the dried and powdered root of the iris, is a valuable ingredient in perfume.
my roots a choice perfume
,
400
If fflowers of baſe extraction thus peſume
If flowers of
Gloss Note
low birth
base extraction
thus presume,
401
And enviously my Glory thus impede
And enviously my glory thus impede,
402
And Soe audaciouſly before mee plead
And so audaciously before me plead?
403
I haue hitherto
Physical Note
“d” written over “t”
triumphd
, and must I now?
I have hitherto triumphed, and must I now,
404
fflora defend, to meaner bevties bow
Gloss Note
The expression, in reference to the classical goddess Flora, is analogous to “God forbid.”
Flora defend
, to
Gloss Note
inferior in rank or quality
meaner
beauties bow?
405
Shee from the Alps, and I from Heaven deſcended
Gloss Note
the Auricula (a mountain plant)
She from the Alps
, and I from heaven descended;
406
If Shee prevailes?
Physical Note
second “e” blotted
She’es
inifintely befriended
If she prevails, she’s infinitely
Gloss Note
promoted
befriended
.
407
Doe but behould my Strang variety
Do but behold my strange variety:
408
Somtimes my Robes are like the Azure Skie
Sometimes my robes are like the
Gloss Note
blue
azure
sky;
409
Then I in purple my faire Limbs infold
Then I in purple my fair limbs enfold;
410
Then richly wrought w:th Silver, Black, & Gould
Then richly wrought with silver, black, and gold:
411
Ney more the tears w:ch trickle down my face
Nay, more: the tears which trickle down my face
412
Or Plinie lies doth propagate my race
(Or
Gloss Note
ancient Roman author of a famous work of natural history
Pliny
lies) doth
Gloss Note
Pliny writes that white lilies propagate at times “by means of a certain tearlike gum” (Book 11, Chapter 11, in The Natural History, trans. John Bostock, Perseus Digital Library Project).
propagate my race
.
413
If those whoſe bevty doe the rest outſhine,
If those whose beauty do the rest outshine
414
Triumphant bee; the priſe is onely mine.
Triumphant be, the prize is only mine.
The

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The Gillyflower
The Gillyflower
415
Physical Note
In left margin: “The July-flower 11:th”
The
admired Julyflower did Sweetly Smile
The admired Gillyflower did sweetly smile,
416
Saying I have bin Silent all this while
Saying, “I have been silent all this while,
417
Not doubting others would extoll my Bevty
Not doubting others would extol my beauty,
418
But find
Physical Note
final “t” crowded between surrounding words
contempt
where I expected Duty
But find contempt where I expected duty.
419
Trust mee, I wonder Such High thoughts Should Sore!
Trust me, I wonder such high thoughts should soar
420
Physical Note
“n” crowded between surrounding words
In
vulgar Brains not capi^ous inough to explore
In
Gloss Note
common or ordinary
vulgar
brains not
Gloss Note
The manuscript has “capius,” which we read as an error for “copious,” meaning furnished plentifully, abounding in information, or full of matter; Eardley emends the word to “capacious.”
copious
enough t’explore
421
The worth of thoſe whom all that know adore
The worth of those whom all that know adore;
422
Yet baſe detracting wayes of pride I Scorn
Yet base detracting ways of pride I scorn
423
With others vice my vertue to adorn
With others’ vice my virtue to adorn.
424
Ladies Refuse mee, if I villipend
Ladies, refuse me, if I
Gloss Note
speak disparagingly, represent as contemptible, abuse or vilify
vilipend
425
The Simplest Simple that I may tranſcend;
The simplest
Gloss Note
a plant used for medicine, but also a humble and ordinary, or ignorant and foolish, person
simple
,
Gloss Note
so that I might rise above
that I may transcend
;
426
Nor never let mee yo:r faire Brest adorn,
Nor never let me your fair breast adorn,
427
But which I Soe abhor; let mee bee worn
But (which I so abhor) let me be worn
428
By baſe Plebeans and ye Hidrian Crew:
By base
Gloss Note
commoners
plebeians
and the
Gloss Note
crowd that multiplies when attacked; an image based on the mythological serpent that regenerated when one of its many heads were severed
Hydrian crew
:
429
Nor never let Auroras Pearly Dew
Nor never let Aurora’s pearly dew
430
Like Gemms bestud my robes at her ariſe
Like gems bestud my robes at her arise,
431
ffor which I breath and early sacrifice
For which I breathe an early sacrifice
432
Of Aromatick odours which perfume
Of aromatic odors which perfume
433
The Ambiant Air; nor let noe flower p:eſume
The ambient air; nor let no flower presume
434
Aboue her Spheire, nor yet her place Surrender
Above her sphere, nor yet her place surrender:
435
My luster is not darkned by their Splendour.
My luster is not darkened by their splendor.
like

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436
Like as the illustrious Globe the Sun
Like as th’illustrious globe, the sun,
437
Gives leave to other Orbs their ^cours to Run
Gives leave to other orbs their course to run,
438
Whilst they unceſſently did^Still trundle round
Whilst they incessantly still trundle round
439
The vast Circumference of his Glorious Mound
The vast circumference of his glorious mound,
440
They following each his own intelligence
They following each his own intelligence,
441
Whilst he to all gives Light, Life, influence
Whilst he to all gives light, life, influence:
442
Soe may each flower in her pride apear
So may each flower in her pride appear
443
And with their various bevties grace the year
And with their various beauties grace the year.
444
I not denie, they may our Queen attend
Gloss Note
I do not deny
I not deny
they may
Gloss Note
the umpire of the contest and narrator
our queen
attend
445
As well as I, yet I them all tranſcend
As well as I; yet I them all transcend.
446
Did I but doubt our Arbitris would deale
Did I but
Gloss Note
fear, suspect
doubt
our
Gloss Note
i.e., the speaker at the start of the poem
arbitress
would deal
447
Injuriously, to Cloris I would apeale
Gloss Note
wrongfully, to wrong another
Injuriously
, to Chloris I would appeal;
448
But Obivious ti’s within her constant brest
But
Gloss Note
i.e, “obvious it is that within her”
obvious ’tis within her
constant breast
449
Louely Astrea doth triumphant rest
Lovely
Gloss Note
goddess of truth and justice
Astraea
doth triumphant rest.
450
To her Il’e yield then, let her freely Judg
To her I’ll yield then: let her freely judge;
451
At her
Physical Note
dots beneath, with some in blank space after (represented in main text)
decition
. . trust me Il’e not Grudg
At her decision, trust me, I’ll not grudge.
452
Let her but mark my Sweet variety
Let her but mark my sweet variety,
453
Which Satisfies w:th out Saciety
Which satisfies without
Gloss Note
the state of having enough or too much of something
satiety
:
454
Somtimes my robes are like the Gentianell
Sometimes my robes are like the
Gloss Note
a blue flower
gentianella
;
455
Then I am paler like the Aspodell
Then I am paler like the
Gloss Note
a species of lily
asphodel
;
456
Somtimes my curious fancie takes delight
Sometimes my curious
Gloss Note
imagination; inventive design; mood or whim; inclination
fancy
takes delight
457
To mix their Azure w:th the lillys white
To mix their azure with the lily’s white;
oft

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458
Oft times in Purple I my Selfe Atire
Oft times in purple I myself attire;
459
Then Skarlet, Pynk, and Peach are my deſire
Then scarlet, pink, and peach are my desire.
460
Thus every colour in my leaves are mixt:
Thus every color in my leaves are mixed.
461
Nature such bevty in my fflowers hath fixt
Nature such beauty in my flowers hath fixed
462
That all to wear my flowers take delight
That all to wear my flowers take delight;
463
I Chear the Spirits and Refreſh the Sight
I cheer the spirits and refresh the sight.
464
Ney did I not to Sadnes give reliefe
Nay, did I not to sadness give relief,
465
Shee that Decides our Strife had fayled w:th grief
She that decides our strife had failed with grief.
466
Then Judg if I am not of Ample fame
Then judge if I am not of
Gloss Note
extending far and wide; abundant
ample
fame
467
When Sects, Mounts, Cittyes Kingdoms, bear my name
When
Gloss Note
Eardley suggests that the July flower is referring to various places named “Julian.”
sects, mounts, cities, kingdoms, bear my name
.
468
Now having Spoke noe favour I implore:
Now, having
Gloss Note
spoken
spoke
, no favor I implore:
469
Let any fflower Speake that can say
Physical Note
after this line, half a blank page, with poem continuing on next page
more
.
Let any flower speak that can say more.
then

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The Adonis
The Adonis
470
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Adonis 12:th
Then
young Adonis lapt his
Physical Note
“b” written over “p”
robe
about him
Then young
Gloss Note
an anemone reputed to have been created out of the mythological Adonis’s blood after this death
Adonis
Gloss Note
wrapped or enfolded
lapped
his robe about him
471
And said hee hop’d they wo’d chuſe noe chiefe w:thout him
And said he hoped they’d choose no chief without him:
472
ffor had I kept my Shape as well as name
“For had I kept my shape as well as name,
473
Then had I not Stood here to plead for fame
Then had I not stood here to plead for fame!
474
ffool that I was, had I not bin Soe coy
Fool that I was, had I not been so coy,
475
I had bin Still faire Aphrodite her Joy
I had been still fair
Gloss Note
i.e., Aphrodite’s
Aphrodite her
joy.
476
Great Junos Son grew Jealous and inraged
Great
Gloss Note
Mars, who was the lover of Venus (also known as Aphrodite)
Juno’s son
grew jealous and enraged
477
To See his loue to mee alone ingaged
To see his love to me alone engaged;
478
But I a foolish proud and Scornfull Boy
But I, a foolish proud and scornful boy,
479
What others long’d for I esteemd a toy
What others longed for, I esteemed a toy.
480
Oft have wee lay in the Idalia Shade
Oft have we lay in the Idalian shade,
481
Where Curious Anadems my Goddes made
Where curious anadems my goddess made,
482
Tworling w:th her white fingers Mertle bow’s
Twirling with her white fingers myrtle boughs
483
Being woven with Roſes to adorn our brows
Being woven with roses to adorn our brows
484
Of red and white the Yellow wee threw by
Gloss Note
with
Of
red and white; the yellow we threw by,
485
Cauſe perfect loue Should be
Physical Note
“[?]" may be “t”; “ans” appears crowded in before next word
S[?]ans
Jealousey
’Cause perfect love should be
Gloss Note
without (French)
sans
Gloss Note
The yellow rose is tossed aside because yellow is a symbol of jealousy.
jealousy
.
486
Somtimes Shee would Sweetly tell me Ancient^storyes
Sometimes she would sweetly tell me ancient stories,
487
Still mixing them with her Tranſcendent^glories
Still mixing them with her transcendent glories
488
Of the tranceforming to Som beast or flower
Of the transforming to some beast or flower
489
ffor their contemning of her loue or power
For their
Gloss Note
scorning, disdaining
contemning
of her love or power;
but

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490
But I her Courtſhip and her counſell Sleighted
But I her courtship and her counsel slighted
491
With hunting cruell Beasts I was delighted
With hunting cruel beasts I was delighted;
492
But (oh my fate) chaſeing the Hiddeous Boor
But (O, my fate) chasing the hideous boar,
493
Hee turn’d & w:th his Tusks my intrales tore
He turned and with his tusks my entrails tore,
494
Which my faire loue did infinitely deplore
Which
Gloss Note
Aphrodite
my fair love
did infinitely
Gloss Note
lament
deplore
.
495
The mixture of my Blood her Brackish tears
The mixture of my blood, her
Gloss Note
salty
brackish
tears,
496
And the influence of her eye my fflower uprears
And the influence of her eye
Gloss Note
In classical myth, Aphrodite transforms Adonis into a flower after Mars kills him.
my flower uprears
.
497
When Shee perceived that from my Blood it Spru^ng
When she perceived that from my blood it sprung,
498
This Scarlet Mantle Shee about mee flung
This scarlet
Gloss Note
a cloak or other covering, here in reference to the Adonis flower’s petals
mantle
she about me flung,
499
Saying my Loue this vesture were for mee
Saying, ‘My love, this
Gloss Note
garment
vesture
were for me,
500
And I between my Breasts will still wear thee
And I between my breasts will still wear thee.’
501
Thus am I proud to triumph on that Thrown
Thus am I proud to triumph on that throne
502
Which once I Scornd, & certainly th’ar none
Which
Gloss Note
Adonis refers to the fact that he once resisted Aphrodite’s advances, as he does in Shakespeare’s retelling (Venus and Adonis [London, 1593]).
once I scorned
, and certainly ther’re none
503
But envies mee, now in my Second Story
But envies me, now in my
Gloss Note
Adonis’s second life as a flower
second story
,
504
Though infinitely more in my first Glory
Though infinitely more in my first glory.
505
Thus was I metamorphiſed to a flower
Thus was I metamorphized to a flower
506
By that inamoured lovly Ladies power
By that enamored lovely lady’s power;
507
And happy
Physical Note
initial “i” imperfectly erased; apostrophe added possibly in different hand from main scribe
[i]t’is
that in a plant I Shine
And happy ’tis that in a plant I shine:
508
Others inſlav’d to her, their Shapes Resign
Others, enslaved to her, their shapes resign
to

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509
To loathsom Beasts, as wiſe Uliſſis ffreinds
To loathsome beasts, as wise Ulysses’s friends
510
By Circes
Physical Note
originally written “Sorcirus” with the “u” changed to an “i”
Sorciri\s\
then Seeing I delighted
By
Gloss Note
Circe used magic to turn Ulysses’s men into pigs.
Circe’s sorceries
. Then, seeing I delighted
511
ffair Eriſina, let mee not bee Sleighted
Fair Erycina, let me not be slighted.
512
More I could Say to magnifie my fame
More I could say to magnify my fame:
513
In Pallasteens a River of my name
Gloss Note
the Abraham/Ibrahim River (also known as the Adonis River), in modern Lebanon
In Palestine’s a river of my name
,
514
Which ^at my Annuall ffeast to blood doth turn
Which at my annual feast to blood doth turn;
515
Thoſe Cristall Waves for me in purple mourn
Those crystal waves for me in purple mourn.
516
There by the lapsed Jews I am adored
Gloss Note
Ezekiel 8:14 mentions heathen women lamenting at the festival of Thammuz (also Tammuz), mentioned in the next line; this was a Sumerian, Babylonian and Assyrian god identified with Adonis and celebrated as signifying seasonal rebirth. Syrian festivals for him coincided with the river’s annual turning red with mud, which women would lament as commemorating the god’s wound.
There by the lapséd Jews I am adored
,
517
And under Thamuze name I am deplored
And under Thammuz’s name I am deplored.
518
Then will I not prejudicate your Pietie
Then will I not
Gloss Note
judge beforehand; condemn in advance
prejudicate
your piety;
519
I am Sure all here will yield until a Deitie
I am sure all here will yield unto a deity.”
520
Now Seeing the Motion of the Sun or earth
Gloss Note
From here, the poem’s narrator, and umpire of the context, speaks all but the third last line.
Now
, seeing the motion of the sun or earth
521
Doth end the Day as it began it’s birth
Doth end the day as it began its birth,
522
Wee’l if you pleaſe prorogue this Parliam:t
We’ll (if you please)
Gloss Note
adjourn
prorogue
this parliament.
523
They bowed their gratefull heads and gave cons:t
They bowed their grateful heads and gave consent.
524
And when Aurora lends to us more light:
And when Aurora lends to us more light,
525
I will Return, till then to all good Night.
I will return; till then, to all good night.
curled line
X (Close panel)Notes: Elemental Edition
Title note

 Physical note

In the manuscript, the title originally continued: “To My Dear Daughter Mistress Anne Pulter, At Her Desire Written”; “Anne” has been crossed out, but is still legible, while “Pulter” is fairly thoroughly blotted out. Anne Pulter, 1635-1666 (Eardley), was one of Hester Pulter’s daughters. While Pulter refers to her children at several points in the manuscript, this is the only poem in which she explicitly indicates her family’s awareness that she is a writer and their participation in her poetic production. A “contention” is a contest or competition.

 Editorial note

The aim of the elemental edition is to make the poems accessible to the largest variety of readers, which involves modernizing spelling and punctuation as well as adding basic glosses. Spelling and punctuation reflect current standard American usage; punctuation highlights syntax which might otherwise be obscure. Outmoded but still familiar word forms (“thou,” “‘tis,” “hold’st”) are not modernized, and we do not modernize grammar when the sense remains legible. After a brief headnote aimed at offering a “way in” to the poem’s unique qualities and connections with other verse by Pulter or her contemporaries, the edition features a minimum of notes and interpretative framing to allow more immediate engagement with the poem. Glosses clarify synonyms or showcase various possible meanings in Pulter’s time. Other notes identify named people and places or clarify obscure material. We rely (without citation) primarily on the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the Oxford Reference database, and the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. When we rely on Alice Eardley’s edition of Pulter’s work, we cite her text generally (“Eardley”); other sources are cited in full. The result is an edition we consider a springboard for further work on Pulter’s poetry. See full conventions for this edition here.

 Headnote

Lying in her garden, Pulter finds herself the chosen umpire of a contest among a dozen flowers in this, her longest poem. Before she will choose a winner, she exhorts the disputants to describe their “virtues”—a word encompassing both moral and botanical meanings in a period when plants were key medicinal ingredients. As the garden members readily comply, Pulter is able to show off her extensive knowledge of botany (drawn from classical and contemporary natural histories and gardening manuals), especially its links to mythology. In addition to their role in health care, the plants concern themselves with their “color, beauty, fashion, smell”—alternately, as they speak in turn, vaunting themselves and mocking the other flowers’ grandiose claims about each other. As well as a spirited contribution to the poetic genre of the debate, Pulter’s poem quietly critiques a parliamentary system in which representatives devote themselves to self-promotion and mud-slinging more than any larger truth. No wonder the umpire’s discreet choice, in the end, is to cut short this mockery of a parliament—perhaps a particularly happy ending for a royalist like Pulter, whose country’s parliament cut short her king’s life and the monarchy itself, leaving her party to take solace in rural retreats. This garden, ironically, provides little peace or quiet, instead subjecting weary humans to the energetic quarreling that they might go there to escape.
Line number 4

 Gloss note

diamonded; made to glitter like a diamond
Line number 4

 Gloss note

goddess of the dawn’s
Line number 5

 Gloss note

before
Line number 8

 Gloss note

not just moral goodness or general superiority but, in this botanical context, beneficial or specifically healing power
Line number 13

 Gloss note

if
Line number 13

 Gloss note

power to decide for others; decision or sentence of an authority; settlement of a dispute
Line number 18

 Gloss note

gentle; gracious; courteous; affable
Line number 18

 Gloss note

highly pleasing or delightful; affording amusement or enjoyment; characterized by or tending to sensuous indulgence; pleasing to the taste or smell
Line number 19

 Gloss note

the muse of lyric (especially love) poetry and hymns; Greek for “lovely”
Line number 21

 Gloss note

Pieria was a district on the slopes of Mount Olympus associated with the Muses and with springs that provided poetic inspiration.
Line number 21

 Gloss note

a fountain on Mount Helicon, where the Muses lived
Line number 22

 Gloss note

Helicon was a mountain associated with the Muses and with fountains believed to give inspiration to those who drank them. Tempe refers to the valley between Mount Olympus and Mount Ossa, which was dedicated to the cult of Apollo and thus associated with music and beauty.
Line number 23

 Gloss note

associated with the dramatic arts (from the sixth-century Thespis, founder of Greek tragedy)
Line number 25

 Gloss note

honeysuckle, a flowering climbing shrub
Line number 29

 Gloss note

dwellings; chambers; shaded garden retreats
Line number 30

 Gloss note

garden features, often shaded and enclosed by intertwined shrubs and lattice work
Line number 31

 Gloss note

Venus’s
Line number 33

 Gloss note

Venus’s lover, father of Aeneas
Line number 35

 Gloss note

The Roman emperor Julius Caesar claimed to be descended from Aeneas
Line number 37

 Gloss note

goddess of chastity
Line number 38

 Gloss note

undressed herself
Line number 42

 Gloss note

The mythological hunter Actaeon accidentally came upon Diana bathing naked with her maid. To punish him, Diana transformed him into a deer and he was torn apart by his own hunting hounds.
Line number 43

 Gloss note

Bees lived in a matriarchy, like Amazons, a mythical group of separatist female warriors.
Line number 44

 Gloss note

implied: no other flower
Line number 45

 Gloss note

Latin for honey
Line number 46

 Gloss note

the horn of plenty symbolizing fruitfulness and plenty, represented in art as a goat’s horn overflowing with flowers, fruit, and corn
Line number 48

 Gloss note

This line is possibly an allusion to the tradition of growing honeysuckle around the doors of houses (Eardley).
Line number 52

 Gloss note

To lead by the nose was to cause to obey submissively or to guide by persuasion
Line number 55

 Gloss note

flexible; limp, flaccid, or flabby (physically or morally)
Line number 58

 Gloss note

A “maquerella” was a term for a female pimp or procuress (see note for this line by Frances E. Dolan, “The Garden” [Poem 12], Amplified Edition). The tulip seems to dismissively order the woodbine to perform that role (to “be” a maquerella) “alone”—that is, to be a maquerella without her (the tulip’s) help—before going on to declare that she refuses the office of pimp. In the manuscript, a blank space after “Micurella,” a lack of punctuation in these lines (as in most of Pulter’s poems), and potentially unusual syntax (as in our proposed editing) makes this passage difficult to parse.
Line number 59

 Gloss note

a position with certain duties, here the Woodbine’s hiding of lovers
Line number 62

 Gloss note

John Gerard describes the tulip’s annual proliferation and variety of its colors (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 140).
Line number 65

 Gloss note

Flora is the mythological goddess of flowers and personification of nature's power in producing flowers; a mantle is a cloak or covering.
Line number 67

 Gloss note

The king is the biblical king of Israel, Solomon, known for his wealth and wisdom; “what’s” signifies “what his.” See Matthew 6:28-29: “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
Line number 71

 Gloss note

In his Herbal, John Gerard claimed that Turkish people named the tulip because it resembled the headdress that Muslims wore (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 146).
Line number 72

 Gloss note

Hundreds of tulip cultivars were named in the early seventeenth century as part of the Dutch phenomenon known as “tulipmania” (Anne Goldgar, Tulipmania: Money, Honor, and Knowledge in the Dutch Golden Age [University of Chicago Press, 2008], p. 107).
Line number 75

 Gloss note

in abundance or reserve
Line number 76

 Gloss note

Tulips are perennials which restore themselves from their root-like bulbs. Tulip bulbs or roots were also understood to be nutritive: “The roots preserved with sugar, or otherwise dressed, may be eaten, and are no unpleasant nor any way offensive meat, but rather good and nourishing” (John Gerard, The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 147). In View But This Tulip (Emblem 40) [Poem 105] Pulter describes a more technical process by which the tulip’s chemically treated ashes could regenerate the plant itself. If the latter meaning, then “roots” would be a possessive (“roots’”).
Line number 79

 Gloss note

to my satisfaction
Line number 79

 Gloss note

takes the first place, has foremost position, or is the best
Line number 80

 Gloss note

ruled or governed; held the highest authority or power
Line number 86

 Gloss note

obtain; succeed as heir; dwell, take up abode
Line number 89

 Gloss note

vernacular (i.e., English) name
Line number 89

 Gloss note

a name applicable at this time to the wallflower as well as pansy
Line number 90

 Gloss note

a short period; a sudden and transitory state of activity
Line number 94

 Gloss note

colored or ornamented, as with paint; sometimes with derogatory connotations related to pretence and deception; sometimes applied to plants (like tulips) with variegated coloring
Line number 97

 Gloss note

shining brightly; gorgeous, magnificent, beautiful
Line number 98

 Gloss note

the earth
Line number 98

 Gloss note

the Tulip, who “rings” or sounds loudly her multiple names
Line number 99

 Gloss note

major river in Western Asia, which received water from many sources and rivers
Line number 100

 Gloss note

The source of the Nile River in Egypt was not known at this time.
Line number 102

 Gloss note

the Tulip
Line number 102

 Gloss note

talking in a blustering or bragging manner; in this context, the word hints at the secondary meaning, “an evaporation of moisture”
Line number 103

 Gloss note

The Tulip bragged, above, that she is made famous by being associated with the turbans of Turkish people, whom the Wallflower derides as a heathen “rout” (assembly or crowd).
Line number 107

 Gloss note

three goddesses who represented intellectual pleasures: beauty, grace, and charm
Line number 112

 Physical note

“at” in the manuscript
Line number 116

 Gloss note

The Lily argues that the Wallflower’s color, yellow, is associated with jealousy.
Line number 117

 Gloss note

shortened form of “innocency”
Line number 118

 Gloss note

free from blemish or (figuratively) sin, guilt, or disgrace
Line number 119

 Gloss note

The lily was the emblem of chastity and purity.
Line number 122

 Gloss note

Just as
Line number 124

 Gloss note

Albion is an alternative name for England, where the White Cliffs of Dover are located (albus is Latin for white).
Line number 125

 Gloss note

Mt. Blanc (or “White Mountain”) is the highest mountain in the Alps range of Central Europe. Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands, off West Africa, is dominated by Mt. Teide, Spain’s tallest peak.
Line number 126

 Gloss note

Hibernia is the Latin name for Ireland (where Pulter was born).
Line number 127

 Gloss note

Cynthia is goddess of the moon and Delius of the sun. “The Oyster and the Mouse” (Emblem 48) [Poem 113] refers to Apollo and Diana as the “Delian twins”; throughout the manuscript, Pulter refers to the male sun god (from Delos) as “Delia,” a name that conventionally identifies the female moon goddess; we have changed to Delius here for clarity.
Line number 133

 Gloss note

life-giving; accelerating
Line number 135

 Gloss note

In answer to the preceding question, Reason replies that colors are nothing but the lack (“want”) of whiteness.
Line number 137

 Gloss note

The Persian duke of Shiraz held an annual feast of lilies lasting 180 days (Eardley).
Line number 138

 Gloss note

all her other honors
Line number 140

 Gloss note

plague-infected
Line number 141

 Gloss note

This Latin phrase (“it is proven”) was commonly attached to medical recipes, indicating that they were effective.
Line number 142

 Gloss note

the Wallflower
Line number 145

 Gloss note

The phrasing is ambiguous: the Rose can mean that the Lily has disgraced herself in making prideful and false claims, or that the Lily has dishonored the Rose by declaring superiority over other flowers.
Line number 149

 Gloss note

The sense here continues from the last sentence: the rose castigates the lily, universally scorned, for claiming superiority when the rose is present.
Line number 150

 Gloss note

Chloris is the goddess of flowers and spring. Here the Rose refers to the common poetic description of beautiful women as having cheeks like roses.
Line number 153

 Gloss note

The rose critiques the lily’s claim that her whiteness–which the rose sees as a lack or “privation” of color–embodies the ideals of light, virtue, and joy.
Line number 156

 Gloss note

treated with indifference or disrespect
Line number 157

 Gloss note

epicureanism, the philosophy of Epicurus, a Greek thinker who held that the senses provided the sole criterion of truth and who saw pleasure as the highest human goal
Line number 158

 Gloss note

Italian god of wine and fertility (associated with Bacchus)
Line number 159

 Gloss note

an expression for being sealed in silence, or sub rosa (Latin), sometimes connected to the secrecy of love
Line number 161

 Gloss note

the warring aristocratic “houses” (families) of York and Lancaster in England, whose symbols were, respectively the white and red rose, and whose fifteenth-century battle for power was called “The War of the Roses”
Line number 167

 Gloss note

unidentified ritual or custom
Line number 169

 Gloss note

Damascus was a production center for rosewater, a staple in foods and medicines. Robert Burton writes of “those hot countries, about Damascus, where ... many hogsheads of Rosewater are to be sold in the market, it is in so great request with them” (The Anatomy of Melancholy [Oxford, 1621], p. 309).
Line number 172

 Gloss note

flowery wreaths for the head
Line number 173

 Gloss note

breasts
Line number 182

 Gloss note

if desiring or longing
Line number 183

 Gloss note

i.e., declare myself not
Line number 184

 Gloss note

the earliest known inhabitants of a particular country; the plants or animals indigenous to a place, native flora or fauna
Line number 185

 Gloss note

In Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique, Thomas Herbert recounts a legend in which Muhammad is transported to Heaven, where meeting the Almighty causes him to sweat drops of water which transform into a rose, grain of rice and four learned men (London, 1638), p. 26.
Line number 186

 Gloss note

archaic name for the Qur’an, the Islamic sacred book, believed to be the word of God as dictated to Muhammad
Line number 187

 Gloss note

the Virgin Mary. As Eardley notes, in A Relation of Some Years’ Travel, Thomas Herbert claims that the Virgin Mary conceived when given a rose to smell by the angel Gabriel (London, 1634), p. 153.
Line number 188

 Gloss note

describe
Line number 192

 Gloss note

A “bride ale” was a wedding banquet, where roses could be strewn on the table; Eardley amends to “bridal bed,” where roses could also be strewn.
Line number 194

 Critical note

The phrase is not hyphenated in the manuscript. Without the hyphen, the word “still” might indicate a sense of “always” (to indicate that joyous lovers are always rose-crowned). With the hyphen, the phrase might suggest that the lovers enjoy something (presumably, each other) on an ongoing or perpetual basis; or that the lovers enjoy stillness, signifying secrecy, quiet, or silence (perhaps especially in conjunction with the noiseless yet expressive flowers that they wear).
Line number 203

 Gloss note

healing properties; as the next line indicates, roses were ingredients in numerous curatives that could affect the body, which was imagined to consist of four humors that needed to be balanced. One method of balance was purgation, or letting forth fluids; another was introducing a cooling agent.
Line number 208

 Gloss note

lifted
Line number 211

 Gloss note

A tincture is a cosmetic coloring, figuratively, a stain, a blemish, or a specious appearance; “orient” refers to the red color of dawn.
Line number 213

 Gloss note

loathe it
Line number 219

 Gloss note

Venus, goddess of love, born in Cyprus
Line number 220

 Gloss note

Poppies were used in treatments for inducing sleep.
Line number 221

 Gloss note

fatigued with excessive watching, or wearied by being kept from sleep
Line number 222

 Gloss note

goddess of earth, grain, and fertility
Line number 224

 Gloss note

scowling, frowning, or dark-faced
Line number 224

 Gloss note

Pluto, who kidnapped Ceres’s daughter, Proserpina, and made her queen of the underworld
Line number 232

 Gloss note

black
Line number 233

 Gloss note

Poppies were associated generally with sleep, rest, and dreaming. The mythological Hypnos, son of Night (or Nyx) had poppies growing outside his cave.
Line number 236

 Gloss note

Night
Line number 239

 Gloss note

female arbiter or judge
Line number 242

 Gloss note

Paracelsus (1493–1541) was a Swiss physician and chemist who saw illness as having an external cause rather than arising as a result of an imbalance in the body's humors. He recommended chemical remedies (or “rules”) for achieving health.
Line number 242

 Gloss note

Leonard Lessius (1554–1623) was a Flemish Jesuit theologian who wrote about diet and health.
Line number 246

 Gloss note

Muhammad’s sweat, as noted above, was reputed to be the origin of the rose, according to Thomas Herbert (Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique [London, 1638], p. 26.)
Line number 247

 Gloss note

foolishnesses; things foolishly esteemed or venerated
Line number 248

 Gloss note

The Qur’an attributes Muhammad with the miracle of splitting the Moon. To “hollow” is to bend into a hollow or concave shape; “hallo,” meaning to incite by shouting (a verb Pulter uses in “The Center” [Poem 30]), could also be signified here.
Line number 249

 Gloss note

person who believes faith alone ensures salvation
Line number 250

 Gloss note

Muhammad; after miraculously causing the Moon to split, Muhammad was reported to put half the Moon in his sleeve and to have sent the other half to the garden of Ali, his cousin and son-in-law, referenced in the next line. This story is recounted in Thomas Herbert’s Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique (London, 1638), p. 259.
Line number 251

 Gloss note

Ali was Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law; “Mortis” is a title meaning “beloved by God,” derived from “Mortadi” or “Mortada.”
Line number 252

 Gloss note

unbelievers, infidels or scoundrels; the manuscript has “mercerents,” which Eardley amends as “miscreants.”
Line number 253

 Gloss note

the Rose either lacks (one sense of “wants”) virtue or honor (one sense of “fame”), since she boasts of shameful things, or desires (another sense of “wants”) a bad reputation or infamy (another sense of “fame”).
Line number 256

 Gloss note

having to do with excreted bodily substances; here, a reference to the Rose’s Qur’an-based account of her birth from Mohammad’s sweat; see the note on “dropped down from paradise,” above
Line number 263

 Gloss note

Robert Herrick writes of a poetic tradition in which Love (Venus) was “wrangling … / Whether the violets should excel, / Or she, in sweetest scent. / But Venus having lost the day, poor girls, she fell on you; / And beat ye so (as some dare say) / Her blows did make ye blue.” Hesperides (London, 1648), p. 119.
Line number 264

 Gloss note

good reputation, honor
Line number 265

 Gloss note

presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
Line number 267

 Gloss note

here, Apollo, the sun god (more usually called Delius, because he was from the island of Delos). René Rapin’s poem on gardens shows the violet pursued by the amorous Apollo; whether Rapin was Pulter’s source is not clear. Hortorum, first published in Latin (Paris, 1665), was first translated and printed in English in 1672 (as Of Gardens[,] Four Books First Written in Latin Verse by Renatus Rapinus; see pages 16-18 on the violet).
Line number 267

 Gloss note

i.e., the sun god loosened or removed the violet’s belt or girdle
Line number 273

 Gloss note

presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
Line number 274

 Gloss note

the “umpire” mentioned three lines earlier, who is also the poem’s first speaker
Line number 275

 Gloss note

the Poppy
Line number 276

 Gloss note

a reference to the Poppy’s power to put people to sleep or to dull their senses.
Line number 279

 Gloss note

the goddess of night
Line number 281

 Gloss note

The violet insults Nocturna, the goddess of night, as someone “purblind” (meaning dim-sighted or dim-witted) and a slut (a woman with slovenly habits, person of low character, or impudent girl).
Line number 285

 Gloss note

the Poppy
Line number 286

 Gloss note

Erebus is the dark classical underworld, Hades; the previous line refers to Persephone, who was abducted (or ravished) and taken to the underworld by Pluto (or Hades).
Line number 288

 Gloss note

The speaker, who confesses her sadness near the poem’s opening, is acting as the judge or “decider” of the debate. References to “her” in the next seven lines are to the speaker.
Line number 290

 Gloss note

medicine's
Line number 296

 Gloss note

The Violet declares that her “passion,” or zealous aim (here, to be ranked first among flowers), must not go “after” the Poppy’s, or come behind her in the ranking.
Line number 297

 Gloss note

variable, speckled with color, flawed
Line number 307

 Gloss note

a name given to plants of which the flowers turn so as to follow the sun; in early times applied to the sunflower and marigold
Line number 307

 Gloss note

to use language as light or unsubstantial as vapor; to talk fantastically, grandiloquently, or boastingly; to rise up
Line number 308

 Gloss note

a candle, used here as a metaphor for the sun
Line number 310

 Gloss note

the Violet’s
Line number 312

 Gloss note

radiant; glittering; resplendent; bright shining
Line number 314

 Gloss note

the east; dawn
Line number 315

 Gloss note

Mount Olympus, the home of the gods of ancient Greece
Line number 317

 Gloss note

at his highest point
Line number 318

 Gloss note

radiant, resplendent, lustrous, glorious or sumptuous
Line number 319

 Gloss note

Tethys was a Titan in Greek mythology who produced the Oceanides (water goddesses) with her brother, Oceanus (a personification of the ocean). In the manuscript, the name is “Tetheus.”
Line number 327

 Gloss note

Apollo, the sun god
Line number 332

 Gloss note

Phœbus was another name for Apollo, the sun.
Line number 334

 Gloss note

a purple dye, associated with the ancient Phœnician city Tyre, where it was made
Line number 335

 Gloss note

clothing or apparel; also, anything that grows upon the land
Line number 339

 Gloss note

something of little or no value or importance (derived from common plants used to cover floors, among other uses)
Line number 342

 Gloss note

Hyperion is sometimes an epithet for the mythological sun god; he was the father of Helios (the Sun).
Line number 343

 Gloss note

obsolete form of “cestus,” meaning belt
Line number 345

 Gloss note

The Heliotrope recasts the conventional myth, in which not the violet (the “she” here) but the Heliotrope herself, in her prior form as the nymph Clytie, envied Leucothoe, for whom Helios, the sun god, had abandoned her. Leucothoe’s father made her die in the original telling.
Line number 351

 Gloss note

foolishly
Line number 352

 Gloss note

a reference to the Eleusinian mystery cult associated with the goddesses Demeter and Persphone, and originating with the goddess Eileithyia
Line number 354

 Gloss note

Venus's
Line number 355

 Gloss note

In Greek mythology, Acheron’s wife is Orphne, who is associated with darkness (and thus “black-browed”).
Line number 355

 Gloss note

grotesque, distorted
Line number 355

 Gloss note

dark-browed or -faced; frowning, scowling
Line number 356

 Gloss note

“rak,” the spelling in the manuscript, might signify “rack” (to stretch, torture, or or pull apart) or “rake” (to search, gather by scraping).
Line number 358

 Gloss note

“Thaumantias” was an epithet for Iris, the goddess of the rainbow, which suggests that Pulter alludes here to the Auricula’s variegated colors (see Frances E. Dolan’s Amplified Edition of this poem)
Line number 364

 Gloss note

Roman name for the Fates, the three goddesses of human destiny
Line number 367

 Gloss note

place or material of origin
Line number 371

 Gloss note

sunflower’s
Line number 372

 Gloss note

gorgeous, showy, attractive in appearance; fashionable; excellent, splendid
Line number 373

 Gloss note

lacks, shortcomings
Line number 376

 Physical note

After this line is half a blank page, with the poem continuing on the next page.
Line number 377

 Gloss note

Caledonia was the Roman name for northern Britain, later applied poetically to Scotland, which featured the fleur-de-lis (Pulter’s Flower-De-Luce) in its royal arms.
Line number 381

 Gloss note

the old French royal coat of arms, on which the fleur-de-lis (here, the Flower-De-Luce) appears
Line number 383

 Gloss note

royal families in general
Line number 384

 Gloss note

territories which featured the fleur-de-lis in their arms
Line number 385

 Gloss note

on the Scottish royal arms, a lion within a border decorated with the fleur-de-lis
Line number 389

 Gloss note

Clovis (466-511), king of the Franks, who was (according to legend) given the fleur-de-lis at his baptism by Mary (mother of Jesus Christ).
Line number 390

 Gloss note

the other flowers in the garden
Line number 391

 Gloss note

burnt to ash or dust; purified or refined by consuming the grosser part
Line number 392

 Gloss note

i.e., wild flowers growing in the mountains, as the auricula (who spoke last) does; the term could also suggest ignorant or uneducated people
Line number 393

 Gloss note

i.e., “What does it matter to me” or “What good does it do me”
Line number 394

 Gloss note

rainbow
Line number 395

 Gloss note

Iris was the messenger (“legate”) of Juno, mythological queen of the gods
Line number 396

 Gloss note

In the Bible, God created a rainbow as a covenant that he would never flood the Earth again (see Genesis 9:12-17).
Line number 397

 Gloss note

i.e., “doth it” or “does it”
Line number 397

 Gloss note

Iris’s; while “lis” in “fleur-de-lis” means “lily,” the design more closely resembles an iris
Line number 398

 Gloss note

the other flowers
Line number 398

 Gloss note

good reputation, honor
Line number 399

 Gloss note

Orris root, the dried and powdered root of the iris, is a valuable ingredient in perfume.
Line number 400

 Gloss note

low birth
Line number 404

 Gloss note

The expression, in reference to the classical goddess Flora, is analogous to “God forbid.”
Line number 404

 Gloss note

inferior in rank or quality
Line number 405

 Gloss note

the Auricula (a mountain plant)
Line number 406

 Gloss note

promoted
Line number 408

 Gloss note

blue
Line number 412

 Gloss note

ancient Roman author of a famous work of natural history
Line number 412

 Gloss note

Pliny writes that white lilies propagate at times “by means of a certain tearlike gum” (Book 11, Chapter 11, in The Natural History, trans. John Bostock, Perseus Digital Library Project).
Line number 420

 Gloss note

common or ordinary
Line number 420

 Gloss note

The manuscript has “capius,” which we read as an error for “copious,” meaning furnished plentifully, abounding in information, or full of matter; Eardley emends the word to “capacious.”
Line number 424

 Gloss note

speak disparagingly, represent as contemptible, abuse or vilify
Line number 425

 Gloss note

a plant used for medicine, but also a humble and ordinary, or ignorant and foolish, person
Line number 425

 Gloss note

so that I might rise above
Line number 428

 Gloss note

commoners
Line number 428

 Gloss note

crowd that multiplies when attacked; an image based on the mythological serpent that regenerated when one of its many heads were severed
Line number 444

 Gloss note

I do not deny
Line number 444

 Gloss note

the umpire of the contest and narrator
Line number 446

 Gloss note

fear, suspect
Line number 446

 Gloss note

i.e., the speaker at the start of the poem
Line number 447

 Gloss note

wrongfully, to wrong another
Line number 448

 Gloss note

i.e, “obvious it is that within her”
Line number 449

 Gloss note

goddess of truth and justice
Line number 453

 Gloss note

the state of having enough or too much of something
Line number 454

 Gloss note

a blue flower
Line number 455

 Gloss note

a species of lily
Line number 456

 Gloss note

imagination; inventive design; mood or whim; inclination
Line number 466

 Gloss note

extending far and wide; abundant
Line number 467

 Gloss note

Eardley suggests that the July flower is referring to various places named “Julian.”
Line number 468

 Gloss note

spoken
Line number 470

 Gloss note

an anemone reputed to have been created out of the mythological Adonis’s blood after this death
Line number 470

 Gloss note

wrapped or enfolded
Line number 475

 Gloss note

i.e., Aphrodite’s
Line number 476

 Gloss note

Mars, who was the lover of Venus (also known as Aphrodite)
Line number 484

 Gloss note

with
Line number 485

 Gloss note

without (French)
Line number 485

 Gloss note

The yellow rose is tossed aside because yellow is a symbol of jealousy.
Line number 489

 Gloss note

scorning, disdaining
Line number 494

 Gloss note

Aphrodite
Line number 494

 Gloss note

lament
Line number 495

 Gloss note

salty
Line number 496

 Gloss note

In classical myth, Aphrodite transforms Adonis into a flower after Mars kills him.
Line number 498

 Gloss note

a cloak or other covering, here in reference to the Adonis flower’s petals
Line number 499

 Gloss note

garment
Line number 502

 Gloss note

Adonis refers to the fact that he once resisted Aphrodite’s advances, as he does in Shakespeare’s retelling (Venus and Adonis [London, 1593]).
Line number 503

 Gloss note

Adonis’s second life as a flower
Line number 510

 Gloss note

Circe used magic to turn Ulysses’s men into pigs.
Line number 513

 Gloss note

the Abraham/Ibrahim River (also known as the Adonis River), in modern Lebanon
Line number 516

 Gloss note

Ezekiel 8:14 mentions heathen women lamenting at the festival of Thammuz (also Tammuz), mentioned in the next line; this was a Sumerian, Babylonian and Assyrian god identified with Adonis and celebrated as signifying seasonal rebirth. Syrian festivals for him coincided with the river’s annual turning red with mud, which women would lament as commemorating the god’s wound.
Line number 518

 Gloss note

judge beforehand; condemn in advance
Line number 520

 Gloss note

From here, the poem’s narrator, and umpire of the context, speaks all but the third last line.
Line number 522

 Gloss note

adjourn
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X (Close panel)Elemental Edition
Elemental Edition

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The Garden, or
The Contention of fflowers, To my Deare Daughter Mris
Physical Note
double strike-through; the left half of the “A” is not struck through.
Anne
Physical Note
whole word blotted, but remaining visible ascenders (and final “er”) suggest “Pulter”
[?]
, at her deſire written
Physical Note
In the manuscript, the title originally continued: “To My Dear Daughter Mistress Anne Pulter, At Her Desire Written”; “Anne” has been crossed out, but is still legible, while “Pulter” is fairly thoroughly blotted out. Anne Pulter, 1635-1666 (Eardley), was one of Hester Pulter’s daughters. While Pulter refers to her children at several points in the manuscript, this is the only poem in which she explicitly indicates her family’s awareness that she is a writer and their participation in her poetic production. A “contention” is a contest or competition.
The Garden, or The Contention of Flowers
AE TITLE
In these transcriptions we preserve as many details of the original material, textual, and graphic properties of Hester Pulter’s manuscript verse as we have found practical. Whenever possible, for instance, original spelling, punctuation, capitalization, lineation, insertions, deletions, alterations, spacing between words and lines, and indentation are all maintained; abbreviations and brevigraphs are not expanded; and superscript and subscript representations are retained. See full conventions for the transcriptions here.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
The aim of the elemental edition is to make the poems accessible to the largest variety of readers, which involves modernizing spelling and punctuation as well as adding basic glosses. Spelling and punctuation reflect current standard American usage; punctuation highlights syntax which might otherwise be obscure. Outmoded but still familiar word forms (“thou,” “‘tis,” “hold’st”) are not modernized, and we do not modernize grammar when the sense remains legible. After a brief headnote aimed at offering a “way in” to the poem’s unique qualities and connections with other verse by Pulter or her contemporaries, the edition features a minimum of notes and interpretative framing to allow more immediate engagement with the poem. Glosses clarify synonyms or showcase various possible meanings in Pulter’s time. Other notes identify named people and places or clarify obscure material. We rely (without citation) primarily on the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the Oxford Reference database, and the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. When we rely on Alice Eardley’s edition of Pulter’s work, we cite her text generally (“Eardley”); other sources are cited in full. The result is an edition we consider a springboard for further work on Pulter’s poetry. See full conventions for this edition here.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall


— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
Lying in her garden, Pulter finds herself the chosen umpire of a contest among a dozen flowers in this, her longest poem. Before she will choose a winner, she exhorts the disputants to describe their “virtues”—a word encompassing both moral and botanical meanings in a period when plants were key medicinal ingredients. As the garden members readily comply, Pulter is able to show off her extensive knowledge of botany (drawn from classical and contemporary natural histories and gardening manuals), especially its links to mythology. In addition to their role in health care, the plants concern themselves with their “color, beauty, fashion, smell”—alternately, as they speak in turn, vaunting themselves and mocking the other flowers’ grandiose claims about each other. As well as a spirited contribution to the poetic genre of the debate, Pulter’s poem quietly critiques a parliamentary system in which representatives devote themselves to self-promotion and mud-slinging more than any larger truth. No wonder the umpire’s discreet choice, in the end, is to cut short this mockery of a parliament—perhaps a particularly happy ending for a royalist like Pulter, whose country’s parliament cut short her king’s life and the monarchy itself, leaving her party to take solace in rural retreats. This garden, ironically, provides little peace or quiet, instead subjecting weary humans to the energetic quarreling that they might go there to escape.

— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall


— Leah Knight and Wendy Wall
1
Once in my Garden as a lone I lay
Once in my garden as alone I lay,
2
Some Solitary howres to paſs away
Some solitary hours to pass away,
3
My fflowers most faire and fresh w:thin my view
My flowers most fair and fresh within my view,
4
New
Physical Note
“watr’d” inserted directly above “Diamon’d”
Diamon’d watr’d
over with Aurora’s dew
New
Gloss Note
diamonded; made to glitter like a diamond
diamoned
, watered o’er with
Gloss Note
goddess of the dawn’s
Aurora’s
dew—
5
Theire names in or^der I er’e long will mention
Their names in order I
Gloss Note
before
ere
long will mention—
6
Physical Note
corrected from “That”, with initial “e” over “a”; final “t” imperfectly erased; additional “e” crowded into space before next word
There
hap^ened amongst them this
Physical Note
unclear correction of spelling mid-word
contenition
There happened amongst them this contention:
7
Which of them did theire fellowes all excell
Which of them did their fellows all excel
8
In vertue, Couloure, Bevty, ffashion, Smell
In
Gloss Note
not just moral goodness or general superiority but, in this botanical context, beneficial or specifically healing power
virtue
, color, beauty, fashion, smell;
9
And mee they choſe for Umpire in this play
And me they chose for umpire in this play.
10
Then up I roſe, Sad thoughts I laid away
Then up I rose, sad thoughts I laid away,
11
And unto them I inſtantly Replied
And unto them I instantly replied
12
That this theire
Physical Note
“y” appears crowded into space before next word
controversy
I’d
Physical Note
“would” appears imperfectly erased, with apostrophe and “d” of “I’d” written over “w”
[?]
decide
That this their controversy I’d decide,
13
Soe they would Stand to my arbitrement
Gloss Note
if
So
they would stand to my
Gloss Note
power to decide for others; decision or sentence of an authority; settlement of a dispute
arbitrament
.
14
They Smileing Anſwer’d they were all content
They, smiling, answered they were all content.
15
I gave them leave theire virtues to declare
I gave them leave their virtues to declare
16
That I the better might theire worth compare
That I the better might their worth compare.
and

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17
And now I
Physical Note
quadruple strike-through
doe
humbly doe implore the Ayde
And now I humbly do implore the aid
18
Of that most Debonare delicious Maide
Of that most
Gloss Note
gentle; gracious; courteous; affable
debonair
,
Gloss Note
highly pleasing or delightful; affording amusement or enjoyment; characterized by or tending to sensuous indulgence; pleasing to the taste or smell
delicious
maid,
19
Louely Erato Crow^n’d with fragrant fflowers
Lovely
Gloss Note
the muse of lyric (especially love) poetry and hymns; Greek for “lovely”
Erato
, crowned with fragrant flowers,
20
Who with her virgin Sisters Spend their howres
Who with her virgin sisters spend their hours
21
By Cleare Pereus, Cristall Hippocreen,
By clear
Gloss Note
Pieria was a district on the slopes of Mount Olympus associated with the Muses and with springs that provided poetic inspiration.
Pereus
, crystal
Gloss Note
a fountain on Mount Helicon, where the Muses lived
Hippocrene
,
22
Sweet Hellicon or Tempes fflowery green
Sweet
Gloss Note
Helicon was a mountain associated with the Muses and with fountains believed to give inspiration to those who drank them. Tempe refers to the valley between Mount Olympus and Mount Ossa, which was dedicated to the cult of Apollo and thus associated with music and beauty.
Helicon or Tempe’s flowery green
:
23
ffaire Thesbian Ladyes all I aske of you,
Fair
Gloss Note
associated with the dramatic arts (from the sixth-century Thespis, founder of Greek tragedy)
Thespian
ladies, all I ask of you,
24
Is, that I give to every flower
Physical Note
ascending straight line beneath
her due
,
Is that I give to every flower her due.
The Woodbine
The Woodbine
25
Physical Note
in left margin between this line and next: “The Woodbine 1:st
ffirst
spoake the Double Woodbine wondro:s faire
First spoke the
Gloss Note
honeysuckle, a flowering climbing shrub
Double Woodbine
wondrous fair,
26
Whose Aromatick Breath perfum’d the Ayre
Whose aromatic breath perfumed the air,
27
Saying I am confident all that can Smell
Saying: “I am confident all that can smell
28
Or See will say that I the Rest excell
Or see will say that I the rest excel.
29
Why am I placed elce ’bout Princely Bowers
Why am I placed else ’bout princely
Gloss Note
dwellings; chambers; shaded garden retreats
bowers
,
30
Shadeing theire Arbours and theyre statly Towers
Shading their
Gloss Note
garden features, often shaded and enclosed by intertwined shrubs and lattice work
arbors
and their stately towers?
31
I did about
Physical Note
initial “I” scribbled out; final “a” altered to “e”
[I]Idalies
Arbour grow
I did about
Gloss Note
Venus’s
Idalia’s
arbor grow,
32
Her bower of Loue, when youthfull Blood did flow
Her bower of love, when youthful blood did flow
33
In old Anchises veins
Physical Note
“their” in different hand from main scribe; double strike-through on “that”
^their ^that
hee did Rest
In old
Gloss Note
Venus’s lover, father of Aeneas
Anchises’s
veins; there he did rest
34
His Rosey Cheeks upon her Lilly brest
His rosy cheeks upon her lily breast,
35
Whos loue produced the happy Julyan Race
Whose love produced the happy
Gloss Note
The Roman emperor Julius Caesar claimed to be descended from Aeneas
Julian race
.
36
Therefore (of all) give mee the chiefest place
Therefore (of all) give me the chiefest place.
37
Oft hath Diana underneath my Shade
Oft hath
Gloss Note
goddess of chastity
Diana
underneath my shade
38
To inrich ſome fountaine her unready made
To enrich some fountain
Gloss Note
undressed herself
her unready made
,
diſcloſeing

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39
Diſcloſeing ^then to my admireing eye
Disclosing then to my admiring eye
40
Thoſe bevties which who ſoe doth prie
Those beauties which whoso doth pry
41
Into, (let him) Ô let him) Still beware
Into, let him—O let him—still beware,
42
Least in Acteons Punniſhment hee Share
Lest in
Gloss Note
The mythological hunter Actaeon accidentally came upon Diana bathing naked with her maid. To punish him, Diana transformed him into a deer and he was torn apart by his own hunting hounds.
Actaeon’s punishment
he share.
43
Doe but obſerve the Amezonian Bee
Do but observe the
Gloss Note
Bees lived in a matriarchy, like Amazons, a mythical group of separatist female warriors.
Amazonian bee
44
Com to this Garden, Shee noe flower can See
Come to this garden: she
Gloss Note
implied: no other flower
no flower
can see
45
That can with Mell, and Necter her Supplie
That can with
Gloss Note
Latin for honey
mel
and nectar her supply;
46
My Cornucopie doth her Satisfie
My
Gloss Note
the horn of plenty symbolizing fruitfulness and plenty, represented in art as a goat’s horn overflowing with flowers, fruit, and corn
cornucopia
doth her satisfy.
47
Then of precedencie I need not doubt
Then of precedency I need not doubt,
48
Cauſe I perfume your goeing in and out
Gloss Note
This line is possibly an allusion to the tradition of growing honeysuckle around the doors of houses (Eardley).
’Cause I perfume your going in and out
.”
The Tulip
The Tulip
49
Physical Note
in left margin, between this line and next: “The Tulip 2d
The
Tulip to the Woodbine then Replyed
The Tulip to the Woodbine then replied:
50
I am Amazed at thy infinite Pride
“I am amazed at thy infinite pride.
51
Dost thou preſume or canst thou once Suppose
Dost thou presume, or canst thou once suppose,
52
To lead impartiall Justice by the Noſe
Gloss Note
To lead by the nose was to cause to obey submissively or to guide by persuasion
To lead impartial Justice by the nose
?
53
Becauſe thou yieldest a pleasſant Spicie Smell
Because thou yieldest a pleasant spicy smell,
54
Therefore all other flowers thou must excell
Therefore all other flowers thou must excel?
55
What though thy limber dangling flowers hover
What though thy
Gloss Note
flexible; limp, flaccid, or flabby (physically or morally)
limber
, dangling flowers hover,
56
Hideing Som wanton and her wanton lover
Hiding some wanton and her wanton lover—
57
Though Venus and her Paramore it bee
Though Venus and her paramour it be?
58
A
a sizeable space follows this word, with room for perhaps another two-letter word.
Micurella
bee alone for mee
Gloss Note
A “maquerella” was a term for a female pimp or procuress (see note for this line by Frances E. Dolan, “The Garden” [Poem 12], Amplified Edition). The tulip seems to dismissively order the woodbine to perform that role (to “be” a maquerella) “alone”—that is, to be a maquerella without her (the tulip’s) help—before going on to declare that she refuses the office of pimp. In the manuscript, a blank space after “Micurella,” a lack of punctuation in these lines (as in most of Pulter’s poems), and potentially unusual syntax (as in our proposed editing) makes this passage difficult to parse.
A maquerella be, alone; for me
,
59
I Scorn that office as I doe thy Pride
I scorn that
Gloss Note
a position with certain duties, here the Woodbine’s hiding of lovers
office
as I do thy pride.
60
Yet am I in a Thouſand Coulours Died
Yet am I in a thousand colors dyed,
61
And though my Seed bee Sown a Hundred yeare
And though my seed be sown a hundred year
62
Yet Still in Newer Coulours I apeare
Gloss Note
John Gerard describes the tulip’s annual proliferation and variety of its colors (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 140).
Yet still in newer colors I appear
;
And

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63
Physical Note
spaces between lines on this page are greater and hand alters slightly
And
if of other flowers there were none
And if of other flowers there were none,
64
A Garden might be made of me alone
A garden might be made of me alone,
65
And floros Mantle might imbroidred bee
And
Gloss Note
Flora is the mythological goddess of flowers and personification of nature's power in producing flowers; a mantle is a cloak or covering.
Flora’s mantle
might embroidered be,
66
As rich as now it is by none but mee
As rich as now it is, by none but me.
67
That Glorious King that had w:ts heat deſir’d
Gloss Note
The king is the biblical king of Israel, Solomon, known for his wealth and wisdom; “what’s” signifies “what his.” See Matthew 6:28-29: “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
That glorious king that had what’s heart desired
68
Was never in his Thrown Soe rich attird
Was never in his throne so rich attired
69
As I,
Physical Note
insertion marks and “nor,” directly above “not,” in different hand from main scribe
\ not nor \
in Such various Coulours drest
As I, nor in such various colors dressed;
70
Therefore I well may Queen bee of ye Rest
Therefore I well may queen be of the rest.
71
The Turkiſh Turbants doe inlarg o:r fames
The
Gloss Note
In his Herbal, John Gerard claimed that Turkish people named the tulip because it resembled the headdress that Muslims wore (The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 146).
Turkish turbans
do enlarge our fames,
72
And wee are honour’d by A Thousand names
And
Gloss Note
Hundreds of tulip cultivars were named in the early seventeenth century as part of the Dutch phenomenon known as “tulipmania” (Anne Goldgar, Tulipmania: Money, Honor, and Knowledge in the Dutch Golden Age [University of Chicago Press, 2008], p. 107).
we are honored by a thousand names
73
Which would vain Glory bee here to Rehearſe
Which would vainglory be here to rehearse,
74
Seing they are known thoughout
Physical Note
multiple strike-through of “y”
they
Univerſ
Seeing they are known throughout the universe.
75
Beſides my beuty I haue vertue Store
Besides my beauty, I have virtue
Gloss Note
in abundance or reserve
store
;
76
My roots decay’d Nature doth Restore
Gloss Note
Tulips are perennials which restore themselves from their root-like bulbs. Tulip bulbs or roots were also understood to be nutritive: “The roots preserved with sugar, or otherwise dressed, may be eaten, and are no unpleasant nor any way offensive meat, but rather good and nourishing” (John Gerard, The Herbal or General History of Plants [London, 1633], p. 147). In View But This Tulip (Emblem 40) [Poem 105] Pulter describes a more technical process by which the tulip’s chemically treated ashes could regenerate the plant itself. If the latter meaning, then “roots” would be a possessive (“roots’”).
My roots decayed nature doth restore
.
77
Then let another Speak that can say more
Then let another speak that can say more.”
The Wallflower or Heartsease
The Wallflower or Heartsease
78
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Wallflower or Hartseaſe 3d
Then
said the Walflower neither Show nor Smel
“Then,” said the Wallflower, “Neither show nor smell
79
Alone (by my content) but vertue bears ye bell
Gloss Note
to my satisfaction
(By my content)
but virtue
Gloss Note
takes the first place, has foremost position, or is the best
bears the bell
;
80
ffor certainly if Sweetnes bore the Sway
For certainly, if sweetness
Gloss Note
ruled or governed; held the highest authority or power
bore the sway
,
81
Then am I Sure to bear the priſe away
Then am I sure to bear the prize away.
if

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82
If Shew,
Physical Note
scribbled out
thy
^my flowers are Statly to behold
If show, my flowers are stately to behold:
83
Som Red, Some White, and Som like burnisht Gould
Some red, some white, and some like burnished gold.
84
But if yo’l give to vertue all her due
But if you’ll give to virtue all her due,
85
My worth doth fare excell my Golden hew
My worth doth far excel my golden hue.
86
Such Rare inherent vertue doth inherrit
Such rare inherent virtue doth
Gloss Note
obtain; succeed as heir; dwell, take up abode
inherit
87
Within my smell by chearing of Mens spirit
Within my smell, by cheering of men’s spirit,
88
All turbulent Paſſions I am known to apeaſe
All turbulent passions I am known to appease,
89
My vulgar nomination being Hearts ease
My
Gloss Note
vernacular (i.e., English) name
vulgar nomination
being
Gloss Note
a name applicable at this time to the wallflower as well as pansy
“Heartsease.”
90
Beſides I doe not for a fitt apeare
Besides, I do not for
Gloss Note
a short period; a sudden and transitory state of activity
a fit
appear,
91
As doth the Tulip but I all the yeare
As doth the Tulip, but I all the year
92
Perfume the Aire to Gardens ad Such grace
Perfume the air, to gardens add such grace
93
That I without preſumption may take place
That I without presumption may take place
94
Aboue the Rest, though not like Tulips painted
Above the rest (though not like tulips
Gloss Note
colored or ornamented, as with paint; sometimes with derogatory connotations related to pretence and deception; sometimes applied to plants (like tulips) with variegated coloring
painted
).
95
ffor beuty never yet made Woman Sainted
For beauty never yet made woman sainted;
96
Tis vertue doth imortalize theire name
’Tis virtue doth immortalize their name,
97
And makes an Aromatick Splendent fame
And makes an aromatic,
Gloss Note
shining brightly; gorgeous, magnificent, beautiful
splendent
fame.
98
About this Orb her numerous names Shee Rings
About
Gloss Note
the earth
this orb
Gloss Note
the Tulip, who “rings” or sounds loudly her multiple names
her
numerous names she rings;
99
So may Euphratus boast her Thousand Springs
So may
Gloss Note
major river in Western Asia, which received water from many sources and rivers
Euphrates
boast her thousand springs.
whilst

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100
Whilst Nil’s head is Ocult, one ownly name
Whilst
Gloss Note
The source of the Nile River in Egypt was not known at this time.
Nile’s head is occult
, one only name
101
Shee glories in yet of Emergent fame
She glories in; yet of emergent fame
102
Shee vapouring, brags that shee is Stuck about
Gloss Note
the Tulip
She
,
Gloss Note
talking in a blustering or bragging manner; in this context, the word hints at the secondary meaning, “an evaporation of moisture”
vaporing
, brags that she is stuck about
103
The
Physical Note
small blot obscures the “c”; possibly a deliberate cancellation
wretched
Turbant of ye
Physical Note
“s” cancelled with a blot
Pagans
Rowt
Gloss Note
The Tulip bragged, above, that she is made famous by being associated with the turbans of Turkish people, whom the Wallflower derides as a heathen “rout” (assembly or crowd).
The wretched turban of the pagan rout
.
104
Such Honor: as diſhonor: I Should Scorn
Such honor as dishonor I should scorn,
105
And Rather choose as I am to bee worn
And rather choose as I am to be worn
106
Upon Som lovely modest, virgins breast
Upon some lovely modest virgin’s breast,
107
Where all the graces doe triumphant Rest
Where all the
Gloss Note
three goddesses who represented intellectual pleasures: beauty, grace, and charm
Graces
do triumphant rest.”
The Lily
The Lily
108
Physical Note
in left margin “The Lilly 4:th
The
lilly Smiled, and Said Shee did admire
The Lily smiled and said she did admire
109
The Walflowers boldnes, and her bold deſire
The Wallflower’s boldness and her bold desire.
110
Becauſe Shee breaths a Suffocateing fume
“Because she breathes a suffocating fume,
111
Must Shee (Ô Strange) aboue the rest peſume
Must she (O strange!) above the rest presume?
112
I am amazed at her arrogance
I am amazéd
Physical Note
“at” in the manuscript
that
her arrogance,
113
Proceeding from her Sorded Ignorance
Proceeding from her sordid ignorance
114
Of others worth makes her extoll her own
Of others’ worth, makes her extol her own;
115
ffor noble vertues trust mee Shee has non
For noble virtues, trust me, she has none.
116
Her colour doth proclaim her Jealoſie
Gloss Note
The Lily argues that the Wallflower’s color, yellow, is associated with jealousy.
Her color doth proclaim her jealousy
,
117
But I’m an Embleme of pure Inocie
But I’m an emblem of pure
Gloss Note
shortened form of “innocency”
inno’cy
.

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118
Spotles my thoughts as Spotles are my leaves
Gloss Note
free from blemish or (figuratively) sin, guilt, or disgrace
Spotless
my thoughts, as spotless are my leaves,
119
While Chastitie her Lover ne’r deceives
While
Gloss Note
The lily was the emblem of chastity and purity.
Chastity
her lover ne’er deceives;
120
And what I wonder were a Virgins due
And what, I wonder, were a virgin’s due,
121
Had not her Skin my Lillies lilly Hue
Had not her skin my lily’s lily hue?
122
Even as the Woodbine wittyly exprest
Gloss Note
Just as
Even as
the Woodbine wittily expressed
123
When Shee compar’d mee to Idalias breast
When she compared me to Idalia’s breast.
124
White are my leaves as Albians Snowey Cliffe
White are my leaves, as
Gloss Note
Albion is an alternative name for England, where the White Cliffs of Dover are located (albus is Latin for white).
Albion’s snowy cliff
,
125
Or higher Alps, or highest Tenerif,
Or
Gloss Note
Mt. Blanc (or “White Mountain”) is the highest mountain in the Alps range of Central Europe. Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands, off West Africa, is dominated by Mt. Teide, Spain’s tallest peak.
higher Alps, or highest Tenerife
;
126
White as the Swans on sweet Hibernias Streams
White as the swans on sweet
Gloss Note
Hibernia is the Latin name for Ireland (where Pulter was born).
Hibernia’s streams
,
127
Or Cinthias bright, or Delias brighter beames
Or
Gloss Note
Cynthia is goddess of the moon and Delius of the sun. “The Oyster and the Mouse” (Emblem 48) [Poem 113] refers to Apollo and Diana as the “Delian twins”; throughout the manuscript, Pulter refers to the male sun god (from Delos) as “Delia,” a name that conventionally identifies the female moon goddess; we have changed to Delius here for clarity.
Cynthia’s bright, or Delius’s brighter beams
.
128
ffor white all other Colours doth excell
For white all other colors doth excel
129
As much as Day doth Night or Heaven doth Hell
As much as day doth night, or Heaven doth Hell.
130
ffor it is chiefly Heavens privation
For it is chiefly Heaven’s privation
131
Makes men in a Hell of desperation
Makes men in a hell of desperation.
132
What are the horrid gloomey Shades of Night
What are the horrid gloomy shades of night
133
But the departure of all quickning Light
But the departure of all-
Gloss Note
life-giving; accelerating
quick’ning
light?
134
And what are coulours reaſon Sa’s not I
And what are colors? Reason says, not I,
135
Nothing but want of my white puritie
Gloss Note
In answer to the preceding question, Reason replies that colors are nothing but the lack (“want”) of whiteness.
Nothing but want of my white purity
.
I

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136
I here could
Physical Note
appears crowded into space between surrounding words, possibly in different hand from main scribe
I
brag but ^will not of the feast
I here could brag, but will not, of the feast
137
The Percians
Physical Note
two or three letters, starting with “H,” scribbled out
[H?d]
^make this Hono:rs mee ye least
Gloss Note
The Persian duke of Shiraz held an annual feast of lilies lasting 180 days (Eardley).
The Persians make
: this honors me the least
138
Of all the Rest: of vertues I may boast
Of all
Gloss Note
all her other honors
the rest
. Of virtues I may boast,
139
ffor if my Roots they doe but boyl or Roast
For if my roots they do but boil or roast,
140
And them to pestilenciall Sores apply
And them to
Gloss Note
plague-infected
pestilential
sores apply,
141
Probatum est, it cures them instantly
Gloss Note
This Latin phrase (“it is proven”) was commonly attached to medical recipes, indicating that they were effective.
Probatum est
: it cures them instantly.
142
But my Antagonest here of the Wall
But
Gloss Note
the Wallflower
my antagonist here of the wall
143
In such a time’s away thrown flowers & all
In such a time’s away thrown, flowers and all.”
The Rose
The Rose
144
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Rose 5:th
At
this ye Blood flush’d in ye Roſes face
At this, the blood flushed in the Rose’s face
145
To heare the Lilly Speake in her diſgrace
To hear the Lily speak in
Gloss Note
The phrasing is ambiguous: the Rose can mean that the Lily has disgraced herself in making prideful and false claims, or that the Lily has dishonored the Rose by declaring superiority over other flowers.
her
disgrace.
146
As Shee then Said, whoſe pride was grown So high
As she then said, “Whose pride was grown so high
147
That Shee preſumes to boast Virginitie
That she presumes to boast virginity,
148
Though Scorn’d by all, dareing to Shew her face
Though scorned by all? Daring to show her face
149
And plead precedencie and I in place
Gloss Note
The sense here continues from the last sentence: the rose castigates the lily, universally scorned, for claiming superiority when the rose is present.
And plead precedency (and I in place)
,
150
When in each lovly Maid and Cloris cheek
When in each lovely maid and
Gloss Note
Chloris is the goddess of flowers and spring. Here the Rose refers to the common poetic description of beautiful women as having cheeks like roses.
Chloris’s
cheek
151
I conquer her, her leaves I know are sleek
I conquer her? Her leaves I know are sleek,
and

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152
And Soe are mine, shee brags ^on Such a fashion
And so are mine! She brags on such a fashion
153
As if Light, Vertue, Joy, were but privation
As if light, virtue, joy, were but
Gloss Note
The rose critiques the lily’s claim that her whiteness–which the rose sees as a lack or “privation” of color–embodies the ideals of light, virtue, and joy.
privation
,
154
As if an unwrit Volume were the best
As if an unwrit volume were the best,
155
Before Heavens loue were in the leaves expre’st
Before Heaven’s love were in the leaves expressed.
156
I’me Sleighted now but in the former Age
I’m
Gloss Note
treated with indifference or disrespect
slighted
now, but in the former age
157
I conſecrated was to Epic^rage
I consecrated was to
Gloss Note
epicureanism, the philosophy of Epicurus, a Greek thinker who held that the senses provided the sole criterion of truth and who saw pleasure as the highest human goal
epic’rage
;
158
When liber paters wine and wit ore flowes
When
Gloss Note
Italian god of wine and fertility (associated with Bacchus)
Liber Pater’s
wine and wit o’erflows,
159
Non dares to speak but underneath the Roſe
None dares to speak but
Gloss Note
an expression for being sealed in silence, or sub rosa (Latin), sometimes connected to the secrecy of love
underneath the rose
.
160
And certainly my flowers were in Request
And certainly my flowers were in request
161
When those Heroyick houſes in theire crest
When
Gloss Note
the warring aristocratic “houses” (families) of York and Lancaster in England, whose symbols were, respectively the white and red rose, and whose fifteenth-century battle for power was called “The War of the Roses”
those heroic houses
in their crest
162
Did Stick my Roſe; York gloryed in the white
Did stick my rose: York gloried in the white;
163
Great Lancaster did in the Red delight
Great Lancaster did in the red delight.
164
But as my fame, Soe it increaſ’d my woe
But as my fame, so it increased my woe
165
To see or: feilds with pricely blood or’e flow
To see our fields with princely blood o’erflow.
166
Ney more thee Orient Kingdoms to my praiſe
Nay more, the Orient kingdoms to my praise
167
In Hono:r of my Birth keepe fowerteen dayes
Gloss Note
unidentified ritual or custom
In honor of my birth keep fourteen days
,
168
And in
Physical Note
the “c” is crowded between the “s” and “k”
Damasckus
yearly they diſtill
And in Damascus yearly they distill
169
As much Roſewater as will drive a Mill
Gloss Note
Damascus was a production center for rosewater, a staple in foods and medicines. Robert Burton writes of “those hot countries, about Damascus, where ... many hogsheads of Rosewater are to be sold in the market, it is in so great request with them” (The Anatomy of Melancholy [Oxford, 1621], p. 309).
As much rosewater as will drive a mill
.
170
Doe but observe when as the virgin crew
Do but observe when as the virgin crew
171
Comes to this Garden (newly Pearl’d w:th Dew)
Comes to this garden (newly pearled with dew)
to

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172
To make their Anadems they ^fill their laps
To make their
Gloss Note
flowery wreaths for the head
anadems
: they fill their laps
173
With other flowers; betwixt their Snowey paps
With other flowers; betwixt their snowy
Gloss Note
breasts
paps
174
I am triumphant, on that Ivory Throne
I am triumphant. On that ivory throne
175
I Sit envied of all uſurp’d of none
I sit envied of all, usurped of none.
176
Somtime I Slide into that milkey vale
Sometime I slide into that milky vale
177
Between those Snowey hills cal’d Cupids Dale
Between those snowy hills called Cupid’s dale.
178
There freely I those living Cherries kiſs
There freely I those living cherries kiss;
179
Lillys looke payle in envy of my Bliſs
Lilies look pale in envy of my bliss.
180
Then seeing I of all am most in grace
Then seeing I of all am most in grace
181
With your Sweet Sex give mee ye chiefest place
With your sweet sex, give me the chiefest place.
182
Here if list, to boast my Heavenly Birth
Here,
Gloss Note
if desiring or longing
if list
to boast my heavenly birth,
183
I could declare not Sprung from Dunghill Earth
I could
Gloss Note
i.e., declare myself not
declare not
sprung from dunghill earth
184
Physical Note
in left margin
as
Aborigins, I and the fruitfull Rice
As
Gloss Note
the earliest known inhabitants of a particular country; the plants or animals indigenous to a place, native flora or fauna
Aborigines
; I and the fruitful rice,
185
To inrich Mankind dropt Down frown Paradice
To enrich mankind,
Gloss Note
In Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique, Thomas Herbert recounts a legend in which Muhammad is transported to Heaven, where meeting the Almighty causes him to sweat drops of water which transform into a rose, grain of rice and four learned men (London, 1638), p. 26.
dropped down from paradise
.
186
Witnes the Alcoron where alſoe tis Said
Witness the
Gloss Note
archaic name for the Qur’an, the Islamic sacred book, believed to be the word of God as dictated to Muhammad
Alcoran
, where also, ’tis said,
187
By Smelling to a Rose that bleſſed Maid
By smelling to a rose
Gloss Note
the Virgin Mary. As Eardley notes, in A Relation of Some Years’ Travel, Thomas Herbert claims that the Virgin Mary conceived when given a rose to smell by the angel Gabriel (London, 1634), p. 153.
that blessed maid
188
Brought forth a Son, a wonder to Rehearſe
Brought forth a son, a wonder to
Gloss Note
describe
rehearse
,
189
The Sole Restorer of the Univerſ
The sole restorer of the universe.
190
Looke at those Nuptials where you may behold
Look at those nuptials where you may behold
191
The Stately Structure Shine w:th burnish’d Gold
The stately structure shine with burnished gold,
the

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192
The gorgious Chamber and the Bride ale bread
The gorgeous chamber and the
Gloss Note
A “bride ale” was a wedding banquet, where roses could be strewn on the table; Eardley amends to “bridal bed,” where roses could also be strewn.
bride ale bread
193
With Roſes, and noe other flowers is Spread
With roses and no other flowers is spread;
194
And Still injoying Lovers youthfull brow’s
And
Critical Note
The phrase is not hyphenated in the manuscript. Without the hyphen, the word “still” might indicate a sense of “always” (to indicate that joyous lovers are always rose-crowned). With the hyphen, the phrase might suggest that the lovers enjoy something (presumably, each other) on an ongoing or perpetual basis; or that the lovers enjoy stillness, signifying secrecy, quiet, or silence (perhaps especially in conjunction with the noiseless yet expressive flowers that they wear).
still-enjoying
lovers’ youthful brows
195
Are with my Roſes Crownd and Mertle Bowes
Are with my roses crowned and myrtle boughs.
196
Observe the Riſeing Lustre of the Morn
Observe the rising luster of the morn,
197
How Shee with Roſes doth her head adorn
How she with roses doth her head adorn:
198
Aboue the rest, I’m Honoured by Aurora
Above the rest I’m honored by Aurora
199
And by my Patrones faire louly fflora
And by my patroness, fair lovely Flora.
200
I’m Soe much favoured that noe flower but I
I’m so much favored that no flower but I
201
Between her Snowey breast doth dare to lye
Between her snowy breasts doth dare to lie.
202
Beſides the bevty and
Physical Note
“y” imperfectly erased
they
Sweet delight
Besides the beauty and the sweet delight,
203
My flowers yield my vertue’s infinite
My flowers yield my
Gloss Note
healing properties; as the next line indicates, roses were ingredients in numerous curatives that could affect the body, which was imagined to consist of four humors that needed to be balanced. One method of balance was purgation, or letting forth fluids; another was introducing a cooling agent.
virtues
infinite.
204
I coole, I Purge, I Comfort, and Restore
I cool, I purge, I comfort, and restore;
205
Then who I wonder can desire more
Then who, I wonder, can desire more?
206
If for the worthiest you the priſe reſerve
If for the worthiest you the prize reserve,
207
The chiefest place I’m Sure I doe deserve
The chiefest place I’m sure I do deserve.
The Poppy
The Poppy
208
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Poppy 6:th
The
Gaudy Poppy lift her head aloft
The gaudy Poppy
Gloss Note
lifted
lift
her head aloft,
209
Saying in earnest I haue wondred oft
Saying in earnest, “I have wondered oft
210
To See the Roſe Soe fild w:th pride and Scorn
To see the rose so filled with pride and scorn,
211
As if an Orient
Physical Note
multiple strike-through
Cinder
^tincture did adorn
As if an
Gloss Note
A tincture is a cosmetic coloring, figuratively, a stain, a blemish, or a specious appearance; “orient” refers to the red color of dawn.
orient tincture
did adorn
noe

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212
Noe Cheek but hers, becauſe Shees always worn
No cheek but hers, because she’s always worn
213
Oh how I
Physical Note
“t” is written over a “d”
Loth’t
betwixt the Sweaty paps
(O how I
Gloss Note
loathe it
loath’t
) betwixt the sweaty paps!
214
Physical Note
“Or” in different hand from main scribe; “Or” blotted
Or \Or\
elce Shees thrust into the Dirty laps
Or else she’s thrust into the dirty laps
215
Of wanton
Physical Note
“ff” written over another letter, possibly an “S”
fflurts
, better out Shine
Physical Note
“y” blotted
they
Day
Of wanton flirts! Better outshine the day
216
As I doe, and my bevty to diſplay
As I do, and my beauty to display
217
Unto the Gaizing wondring Paſſer by
Unto the gazing, wond’ring passerby,
218
Who Stands amazed at my variety
Who stands amazed at my variety.
219
Shee brags the Ciprian Lady loves her best
She brags the
Gloss Note
Venus, goddess of love, born in Cyprus
Cyprian lady
loves her best,
220
But did Shee ever give a Goddes Rest
But did she ever
Gloss Note
Poppies were used in treatments for inducing sleep.
give a goddess rest
,
221
As I haue don, when over watch’d w:th grief
As I have done? When
Gloss Note
fatigued with excessive watching, or wearied by being kept from sleep
overwatched
with grief
222
Great Ceris was, by Sleep I gave reliefe
Great
Gloss Note
goddess of earth, grain, and fertility
Ceres
was, by sleep I gave relief
223
Unto her tired Spirit when Shee ran after
Unto her tired spirit when she ran after
224
That black browed Knave that Stole away her ^Daughter
That
Gloss Note
scowling, frowning, or dark-faced
black-browed
Gloss Note
Pluto, who kidnapped Ceres’s daughter, Proserpina, and made her queen of the underworld
knave that stole away her daughter
.
225
If shee of Colour boast then soe may I
If she of color boast, then so may I:
226
What flowers At distance more delights ye eye
What flowers at distance more delights the eye?
227
And where Shee brags of Uſhering in Aurora
And where she brags of ushering in Aurora,
228
And dreſſing of the head of dainty fflora
And dressing of the head of dainty Flora,
229
Tis true I doe not tend upon the Morn
’Tis true I do not tend upon the morn,
230
Yet doe I Cloris ^youthfull Robe adorn
Yet do I Chloris’s youthful robe adorn
as

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231
As well as Shee, and when Nights Silence Queen
As well as she; and when Night, silent queen,
232
Triumphant in her Ebone Coach is Seen
Triumphant in her
Gloss Note
black
ebon
coach, is seen,
233
I Strow her Paths as Shee doth Conquering Ride
Gloss Note
Poppies were associated generally with sleep, rest, and dreaming. The mythological Hypnos, son of Night (or Nyx) had poppies growing outside his cave.
I strew her paths as she doth conquering ride
.
234
What flower I wonder dares doe soe beſide
What flower, I wonder, dares do so beside?
235
And when in Soft and Downey Armes
And when in soft and downy arms
236
Shee Lullabyes the World with potent Charms
Gloss Note
Night
She
lullabies the world with potent charms,
237
The vapour of my fflowers doth Slyly creep
The vapor of my flowers doth slyly creep
238
To troubled Mortals cauſing them to Sleep
To troubled mortals, causing them to sleep.
239
I would our Arbitratris would but take
I would our
Gloss Note
female arbiter or judge
arbitratrix
would but take
240
My flowers or Seed I’m confident t’would make
My flowers or seed: I’m confident ’twould make
241
Her sleep and rest ^& Dreams by fare more quiet
Her sleep and rest and dreams by far more quiet
242
Then Paracelſus rules or Leſhes Dyet
Than
Gloss Note
Paracelsus (1493–1541) was a Swiss physician and chemist who saw illness as having an external cause rather than arising as a result of an imbalance in the body's humors. He recommended chemical remedies (or “rules”) for achieving health.
Paracelsus’s rules
or
Gloss Note
Leonard Lessius (1554–1623) was a Flemish Jesuit theologian who wrote about diet and health.
Lessius’s diet
.
243
Ney more, more Seeds one of my Poppies bear
Nay, more: more seeds one of my poppies bear
244
Then in A Hundred Gardens Roſes are
Than in a hundred gardens roses are!
245
I can but laugh at that Redicalous dreame
I can but laugh at that ridiculous dream
246
Of Springing
Physical Note
“of” struck-through twice horizontally; “from” in H2.
offrom
that Grand impostors Steame
Of springing from
Gloss Note
Muhammad’s sweat, as noted above, was reputed to be the origin of the rose, according to Thomas Herbert (Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique [London, 1638], p. 26.)
that grand impostor’s steam
!
247
Physical Note
“Such” blotted; “ſuch,” inserted directly above, in different hand from main scribe
Such\ſuch \
foppiries I credit Shall as Soon
Such
Gloss Note
foolishnesses; things foolishly esteemed or venerated
fopperies
I credit shall as soon
248
As that he hollowed ^down ye Splendent Moon
Gloss Note
The Qur’an attributes Muhammad with the miracle of splitting the Moon. To “hollow” is to bend into a hollow or concave shape; “hallo,” meaning to incite by shouting (a verb Pulter uses in “The Center” [Poem 30]), could also be signified here.
As that he hollowed down the splendent Moon
.
249
O mee what Solifidien can believe
O me, what
Gloss Note
person who believes faith alone ensures salvation
solifidian
can believe
250
That hee Should ^put one halfe into his Sleeve
That
Gloss Note
Muhammad; after miraculously causing the Moon to split, Muhammad was reported to put half the Moon in his sleeve and to have sent the other half to the garden of Ali, his cousin and son-in-law, referenced in the next line. This story is recounted in Thomas Herbert’s Some Years’ Travels into Diverse Parts of Asia and Afrique (London, 1638), p. 259.
he
should put one half into his sleeve,
the

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251
The other made A Zone for Mortis Alley
The other made a zone for
Gloss Note
Ali was Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law; “Mortis” is a title meaning “beloved by God,” derived from “Mortadi” or “Mortada.”
Mortis Ali
?
252
Thus with their ffaith these Mercerents doe ^dalley
Thus with their faith these
Gloss Note
unbelievers, infidels or scoundrels; the manuscript has “mercerents,” which Eardley amends as “miscreants.”
miscreants
do dally!
253
Then I conclude Shee vertue wants or fame
Then, I conclude,
Gloss Note
the Rose either lacks (one sense of “wants”) virtue or honor (one sense of “fame”), since she boasts of shameful things, or desires (another sense of “wants”) a bad reputation or infamy (another sense of “fame”).
she virtue wants or fame
,
254
Boasting of that which I Should count my Shame
Boasting of that which I should count my shame.
255
Let mee and mine riſe from the new plow’d earth
Let me and mine rise from the new-plowed earth
256
While Shee proclaims her excremencious birth.
While she proclaims her
Gloss Note
having to do with excreted bodily substances; here, a reference to the Rose’s Qur’an-based account of her birth from Mohammad’s sweat; see the note on “dropped down from paradise,” above
excrementous
birth.”
The Violet
The Violet
257
Physical Note
in left margin: “The Violet 7:th
The
Bashfull Violet then her head upheav’s
The bashful violet then her head upheaves,
258
Shee being vailed or’e before w:th leaves
She being veiled o’er before with leaves.
259
Then Sighing forth a coole and Sweet perfume
Then, sighing forth a cool and sweet perfume,
260
Shee Said the Poppie did too much preſume
She said the Poppy did too much presume;
261
Then trickling down a teare (ah me Shee Said)
Then, trickling down a tear, “Ah me,” she said,
262
I well Remember when I was a Maid
“I well remember when I was a maid,
263
My bevty did a deietie inflame
Gloss Note
Robert Herrick writes of a poetic tradition in which Love (Venus) was “wrangling … / Whether the violets should excel, / Or she, in sweetest scent. / But Venus having lost the day, poor girls, she fell on you; / And beat ye so (as some dare say) / Her blows did make ye blue.” Hesperides (London, 1648), p. 119.
My beauty did a deity inflame
;
264
And must I now (Ô strange) contend for fame
And must I now (O strange!) contend for
Gloss Note
good reputation, honor
fame
?
265
Let me not breath her pride doth me confound
Let me not breathe;
Gloss Note
presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
her
pride doth me confound.
266
I was a Lady once for beavty Crownd
I was a lady once, for beauty crowned,
267
Till Delia did unlooſe my virgin Zone
Till
Gloss Note
here, Apollo, the sun god (more usually called Delius, because he was from the island of Delos). René Rapin’s poem on gardens shows the violet pursued by the amorous Apollo; whether Rapin was Pulter’s source is not clear. Hortorum, first published in Latin (Paris, 1665), was first translated and printed in English in 1672 (as Of Gardens[,] Four Books First Written in Latin Verse by Renatus Rapinus; see pages 16-18 on the violet).
Delia
did
Gloss Note
i.e., the sun god loosened or removed the violet’s belt or girdle
unloose my virgin zone
;
268
Since when in Silent Shades I make my mone
Since when, in silent shades I make my moan;
yet

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269
Yet Sure for Shame my face I need not cover
Yet sure for shame my face I need not cover.
270
Who would not Glory in Soe brave a lover
Who would not glory in so brave a lover?
271
And in our Umpires love I well may rest
And in our umpire’s love I well may rest,
272
Shee uſeing oft to wear me in her breast
She using oft to wear me in her breast;
273
But as for you, you ne’r attain’d that grace
But as for
Gloss Note
presumably, the Poppy (who spoke last)
you
, you ne’er attained that grace
274
Her to adorn, or in her Houſe had place
Gloss Note
the “umpire” mentioned three lines earlier, who is also the poem’s first speaker
Her
to adorn, or in her house had place,
275
ffor none her Loathſom Savour can abide
For none
Gloss Note
the Poppy
her
loathsome savor can abide,
276
Unles by her they would be stupified
Unless by her they would be
Gloss Note
a reference to the Poppy’s power to put people to sleep or to dull their senses.
stupefied
.
277
Were here not others of more worth then Shee
Were here not others of more worth than she,
278
I need not strive the priſe would fall to mee
I need not strive: the prize would fall to me.
279
Nocturna favours her Shee doth pretend
Gloss Note
the goddess of night
Nocturna
favors her, she doth pretend;
280
And must Shee therefore all ye Rest transcend
And must she therefore all the rest transcend?
281
That old deformed, Purblind Slut, wants Sight
That old deforméd,
Gloss Note
The violet insults Nocturna, the goddess of night, as someone “purblind” (meaning dim-sighted or dim-witted) and a slut (a woman with slovenly habits, person of low character, or impudent girl).
purblind slut
wants sight
282
To Judg of bevty; or at least wants light
To judge of beauty, or at least wants light.
283
But I perfume the Air with fair Aurora
But I perfume the air with fair Aurora,
284
And grace the paps, and Robes of lovly fflora
And grace the paps and robes of lovely Flora.
285
Shee tels long Stories of the Ravished Queen
Gloss Note
the Poppy
She
tells long stories of the ravished queen
286
Of Eribus, in this her pride is Seen
Of
Gloss Note
Erebus is the dark classical underworld, Hades; the previous line refers to Persephone, who was abducted (or ravished) and taken to the underworld by Pluto (or Hades).
Erebus
; in this her pride is seen.
287
I wonder at her Arogance and Madnes
I wonder at her arrogance and madness,
288
To Dream of cureing our Deſiders Sadnes
To dream of curing our
Gloss Note
The speaker, who confesses her sadness near the poem’s opening, is acting as the judge or “decider” of the debate. References to “her” in the next seven lines are to the speaker.
decider’s
sadness,
when

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289
When her sad heart’s Soe overchargd w:th grief
When her sad heart’s so overcharged with grief
290
That Phisicks Art can give her noe Relief
That
Gloss Note
medicine's
physic’s
art can give her no relief.
291
ffor I haue heard her often Sighing Say
For I have heard her often, sighing, say
292
Nothing would ease her but her Dying Day
Nothing would ease her but her dying day;
293
Nothing would cure her till ye Dead did Riſe
Nothing would cure her till the dead did rise
294
In Glory, then and not before, her eyes
In glory; then and not before, her eyes
295
would ceaſe for Sin and Sorrow to or’eflow
Would cease for sin and sorrow to o’erflow.
296
But after her my Paſſsion must not goe
Gloss Note
The Violet declares that her “passion,” or zealous aim (here, to be ranked first among flowers), must not go “after” the Poppy’s, or come behind her in the ranking.
But after her my passion must not go
.
297
Although I am not like the Poppie pied
Although I am not like the poppy
Gloss Note
variable, speckled with color, flawed
pied
,
298
Yet is my vest in Princely purple dyed
Yet is my vest in princely purple dyed,
299
And in thoſe Coulours that Adorn ye Skie
And in those colors that adorn the sky,
300
Then which?
Physical Note
doubly struck-through, scribbled cancellation of two words, possibly “none is”
[?]
non is more pleasing to ye eye
Than which none is more pleasing to the eye.
301
In Sicknes and in health I am respected
In sickness and in health I am respected;
302
Then let me not (for Shame) be now neglected
Then let me not (for shame) be now neglected.
303
The Poppie Sa’s Shee Rocks ye World a Sleep
The Poppy says she rocks the world asleep,
304
And braging, Such a Racket Shee doth keep
And, bragging, such a racket she doth keep
305
That Shee forgets (I am afraid) the Duty
That she forgets (I am afraid) the duty
306
That all doe ow to vertue and to Bevty
That all do vow to virtue and to beauty.
the

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The Heliotrope
The Heliotrope
307
Physical Note
to left, in margin: “The Helitropia 8:th”; beneath, “Sunflower” and curved, doubly-crossed flourish, with indiscernible pen markings to left
The
Physical Note
superscript “u” written over other letter
Heliotropium
then began to vapour
The
Gloss Note
a name given to plants of which the flowers turn so as to follow the sun; in early times applied to the sunflower and marigold
Heliotropium
then began to
Gloss Note
to use language as light or unsubstantial as vapor; to talk fantastically, grandiloquently, or boastingly; to rise up
vapor
,
308
Saying I vow, by yonder blazing Tapor
Saying, “I vow, by yonder blazing
Gloss Note
a candle, used here as a metaphor for the sun
taper
309
Which gives to all both light and influence
Which gives to all both light and influence,
310
I am confounded at her impudence
I am confounded at
Gloss Note
the Violet’s
her
impudence!”
311
Then Stareing on the Sun, behold Shee Said
Then, staring on the sun, “Behold,” she said,
312
To view his fulgent face I’m not afraid
“To view his
Gloss Note
radiant; glittering; resplendent; bright shining
fulgent
face I’m not afraid;
313
When hee in pride and Splendour doth ariſe
When he in pride and splendor doth arise,
314
Unto the Orient I throw
Physical Note
imperfectly erased “ne” visible afterward, and dot over “y” signalling alteration of earlier “i”
my
Eyes
Unto
Gloss Note
the east; dawn
the orient
I throw my eyes;
315
And as he mounts up the Olympick Hill
And as he mounts up the
Gloss Note
Mount Olympus, the home of the gods of ancient Greece
Olympic hill
,
316
With amorous glances I pursue him Still
With amorous glances I pursue him still;
317
And when hee’s Zenith I as tis my duty
And when
Gloss Note
at his highest point
he’s zenith
, I, as ’tis my duty,
318
Am fixt admireing his Refulgent bevty
Am fixed admiring his
Gloss Note
radiant, resplendent, lustrous, glorious or sumptuous
refulgent
beauty;
319
But when he doth deſcend to Tetheus deep
But when he doth descend to
Gloss Note
Tethys was a Titan in Greek mythology who produced the Oceanides (water goddesses) with her brother, Oceanus (a personification of the ocean). In the manuscript, the name is “Tetheus.”
Tethyss’s
deep,
320
To part with him in Golden tears I weep
To part with him in golden tears I weep;
321
But Shee (poore Girle) an uregarded flower
But she (poor girl), an unregarded flower,
322
To vew his his Raidient face hath not the power
To view his radiant face hath not the power;
323
But in Som Silent, Sad, neglected Shades
But in some silent, sad, neglected shades
324
Shee (deſpic[e]able
Physical Note
“S” in lighter ink
Shee
) Buds, Blooms, & fades;
She (despicable she) buds, blooms, and fades,
325
Whilst I unto the wondring World diſplay
Whilst I unto the wondering world display
326
My beuty, createing createing either night or day
My beauty, creating either night or day;
when

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327
When I contract my leaves my love his Light
When I contract my leaves,
Gloss Note
Apollo, the sun god
my love
his light,
328
Then all this Globe’s involved in horrid Night
Then all this globe’s involved in horrid night;
329
But when wee doe our Golden Curles unfold
But when we do our golden curls unfold,
330
All are exhillerated to behold
All are exhilarated to behold
331
Our love and light, I wonder Shee Should dare
Our love and light. I wonder she should dare
332
With Phœbus famous favorite to compare
With
Gloss Note
Phœbus was another name for Apollo, the sun.
Phœbus’s
famous favorite to compare.
333
Most foolishly Shee vaunts her Birth is high
Most foolishly she vaunts her birth is high,
334
And that her Robes are dipt in Tirian die
And that her robes are dipped in
Gloss Note
a purple dye, associated with the ancient Phœnician city Tyre, where it was made
Tyrian dye
;
335
When as the vesture which my limbs
Physical Note
“u” corrects earlier “i”
unfold
When as the
Gloss Note
clothing or apparel; also, anything that grows upon the land
vesture
which my limbs unfold
336
Are Youthfull green ffring’d w:th burniſh’d Gold
Are youthful green, fringéd with burnished gold.
337
Shee Brags the female Sex esteem her best
She brags the female sex esteem her best
338
And ^
Physical Note
“t” is superscript to superscript “y”
yt
Shee Sits Triumphant on their brest
And that she sits triumphant on their breast.
339
A rush I care not for that Scornfull crue
A
Gloss Note
something of little or no value or importance (derived from common plants used to cover floors, among other uses)
rush
I care not for that scornful crew,
340
For And ^did \ I grow as fare aboue their view
For did I grow as far above their view
341
As from their Reach trust me I Should rejoyce
As from their reach, trust me, I should rejoice;
342
ffor braue Hiperion is my Souls ſole choice
For brave
Gloss Note
Hyperion is sometimes an epithet for the mythological sun god; he was the father of Helios (the Sun).
Hyperion
is my soul’s sole choice.
343
Shee says my loue her Ceston did untie
She says my love her
Gloss Note
obsolete form of “cestus,” meaning belt
ceston
did untie
344
But now he Scorns on her to cast an eye
But now he scorns on her to cast an eye,
345
Cauſe enviously Shee made Lucothia dye
’Cause enviously
Gloss Note
The Heliotrope recasts the conventional myth, in which not the violet (the “she” here) but the Heliotrope herself, in her prior form as the nymph Clytie, envied Leucothoe, for whom Helios, the sun god, had abandoned her. Leucothoe’s father made her die in the original telling.
she made Leucothoe die
ere

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346
Er’e Since he hath Refuſed her wanton Bed
E’er since he hath refused her wanton bed,
347
Since when aſhamed Shee hides her guilty Head
Since when, ashamed, she hides her guilty head.
348
Shee vaunts that Shee perfumes ye breath of fflora
She vaunts that she perfumes the breath of Flora;
349
Som dreſs the Golden Treſſes of Aurora
Some dress the golden tresses of Aurora;
350
Some of the Goddeſſes tels tedious Storyes
Some of the goddesses tells tedious stories,
351
And fondly think to Shine by others gloryes
And
Gloss Note
foolishly
fondly
think to shine by others’ glories;
352
Som of the Elucian Lady wonders tell
Some of the
Gloss Note
a reference to the Eleusinian mystery cult associated with the goddesses Demeter and Persphone, and originating with the goddess Eileithyia
Eleusian lady
wonders tell,
353
And others fetch persephone from Hell
And others fetch Persephone from Hell;
354
Som of faire Eriſinas favour brag
Some of fair
Gloss Note
Venus's
Erycina’s
favor brag,
355
And Acharons wife yt Antick black browed Hag
And
Gloss Note
In Greek mythology, Acheron’s wife is Orphne, who is associated with darkness (and thus “black-browed”).
Acheron’s wife
with
Gloss Note
grotesque, distorted
antic
Gloss Note
dark-browed or -faced; frowning, scowling
black-browed
hag;
356
Thus they for trophis rak hell and Night
Thus they for trophies
Gloss Note
“rak,” the spelling in the manuscript, might signify “rack” (to stretch, torture, or or pull apart) or “rake” (to search, gather by scraping).
rake
Hell and night
357
Whilst I Stand glorying in ye God of Light.
Whilst I stand glorying in the God of Light.
The Auricula
The Auricula
358
Physical Note
In left margin: “The Auricola 9:th
The
Physical Note
the “u” is cramped between the “A” and “r”
Auricola
in brave Thamancious hew
The Auricula, in brave
Gloss Note
“Thaumantias” was an epithet for Iris, the goddess of the rainbow, which suggests that Pulter alludes here to the Auricula’s variegated colors (see Frances E. Dolan’s Amplified Edition of this poem)
Thaumantias’s hue
,
359
Whoſe Shadowed Robes
Physical Note
insertion marks and “w” in different hand from main scribe; first “e” written over “a”
\w\ere
Di’mond ore w:th Dew
Whose shadowed robes were diamoned o’er with dew,
360
ffrom her bright eyes let fall a Shower of tears
From her bright eyes let fall a shower of tears
361
Which hung like pendent Pearls about her ears
Which hung like pendant pearls about her ears;
362
Then Shakeing of her Head Shee Said
Physical Note
“H” imperfectly erased; first “a” appears written over prior “e”
Halas
!
Then, shaking of her head, she said, “Alas!
363
Why? doe I live to See this com to pas
Why do I live to see this come to pass?
364
Why? did the impartiall Parces twist my thred
Why did the impartial
Gloss Note
Roman name for the Fates, the three goddesses of human destiny
Parcae
twist my thread?
365
Physical Note
in left margin: “Why”
ffrom
the Chaos did I lift my head
Why from the chaos did I lift my head?
wer't

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366
Were’t not for the inevitable Laws
Were’t not for the inevitable laws
367
Of Destinie, I wo’d Shrink into my cauſs
Of destiny, I would shrink into my
Gloss Note
place or material of origin
cause
,
368
And rather makt my choyce to be nighted
And rather make it my choice to be nighted
369
Eternally, then live to bee thus Sleighted
Eternally, than live to be thus slighted.
370
Ney I had rather choose Annihiliation
Nay, I had rather choose annihilation
371
Then hear the fflos Solis ostentation
Then hear the
Gloss Note
sunflower’s
Flos Solis’s
ostentation!
372
Here’s many gallant flowers conscious bee
Here’s many
Gloss Note
gorgeous, showy, attractive in appearance; fashionable; excellent, splendid
gallant
flowers conscious be
373
Of their own wants, which Silent Stand you See
Of their own
Gloss Note
lacks, shortcomings
wants
, which silent stand (you see)
374
And yet have infinitely more worth then ſhee
And yet have infinitely more worth than she!
375
Yet wee must all Stand mute to hear her prattle:
Yet we must all stand mute to hear her prattle:
376
Dear heart! How my ears tingle w:th her
Physical Note
after this line, half a blank page, with poem continuing on next page
tattle
.
Dear heart! How my ears tingle with her
Physical Note
After this line is half a blank page, with the poem continuing on the next page.
tattle
.

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The Flower-De-Luce
The Flower-De-Luce
377
Physical Note
in left margin: “The fflower Deluce 10:th
The
Calcidonian Iris then adrest
The
Gloss Note
Caledonia was the Roman name for northern Britain, later applied poetically to Scotland, which featured the fleur-de-lis (Pulter’s Flower-De-Luce) in its royal arms.
Caledonian Iris
then addressed
378
Her Selfe to Speake, being choſen by ye rest
Herself to speak, being chosen by the rest,
379
And Said I would this tryall were in ffrance
And said, “I would this trial were in France,
380
ffor there my favourets I could all advance
For there my favorites I could all advance;
381
ffor in the Kings paternall Coat I’me born
For in
Gloss Note
the old French royal coat of arms, on which the fleur-de-lis (here, the Flower-De-Luce) appears
the king’s paternal coat
I’m borne,
382
And being tranſplanted my brave fflowers adorn
And, being transplanted, my brave flowers adorn
383
And luster ad to the Emperiall race
And luster add to
Gloss Note
royal families in general
the imperial race
:
384
England, Navarr, Peadmount, my fflowers Grace
Gloss Note
territories which featured the fleur-de-lis in their arms
England, Navarre, Piedmont
my flowers grace.
385
The Callidonian Lion is protected
The
Gloss Note
on the Scottish royal arms, a lion within a border decorated with the fleur-de-lis
Caledonian lion
is protected
386
By mee alone, must I then ^be neglected
By me alone; must I then be neglected?
387
What do’th availe? y:t I from Heaven came down
What doth avail that I from Heaven came down
388
To stick my flower Deluces in the Crown:
To stick my flower-de-luces in the crown
389
Of ffamous Clodoneus if I must
Of famous
Gloss Note
Clovis (466-511), king of the Franks, who was (according to legend) given the fleur-de-lis at his baptism by Mary (mother of Jesus Christ).
Clodoneus
? If I must
390
Give place to these then let mee turn to Dust
Give place to
Gloss Note
the other flowers in the garden
these
, then let me turn to dust!
391
ffor trust mee I had rather bee Calcind
For trust me, I had rather be
Gloss Note
burnt to ash or dust; purified or refined by consuming the grosser part
calcined
392
Then live and bee by Mounteneers outſhind
Than live and be by
Gloss Note
i.e., wild flowers growing in the mountains, as the auricula (who spoke last) does; the term could also suggest ignorant or uneducated people
mountaineers
outshined.
393
What boots it mee? that all the World doth know
Gloss Note
i.e., “What does it matter to me” or “What good does it do me”
What boots it me
that all the world doth know
394
My Princely vesture’s like the Heavenly Bow
My princely vesture’s like
Gloss Note
rainbow
the heavenly bow
,
395
Great Junos Legate, on whose Shineing brest
Great
Gloss Note
Iris was the messenger (“legate”) of Juno, mythological queen of the gods
Juno’s legate
, on whose shining breast
396
Heavens Loue in Dewey
Physical Note
“r” and insertion marks in different hand from main scribe
Char\r\acters
exprest
Gloss Note
In the Bible, God created a rainbow as a covenant that he would never flood the Earth again (see Genesis 9:12-17).
Heaven’s love in dewy character’s expressed?
what

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397
What doth’t advantage mee to bear her name;
What
Gloss Note
i.e., “doth it” or “does it”
doth’t
advantage me to bear
Gloss Note
Iris’s; while “lis” in “fleur-de-lis” means “lily,” the design more closely resembles an iris
her
name,
398
If I with Such as these must Strive for ffame
If I with such as
Gloss Note
the other flowers
these
must strive for
Gloss Note
good reputation, honor
fame
?
399
What gain I? that my
Physical Note
apostrophe and “s” appear crowded between surrounding words in different hand from main scribe
root’s
a choyce perfume
What gain I that
Gloss Note
Orris root, the dried and powdered root of the iris, is a valuable ingredient in perfume.
my roots a choice perfume
,
400
If fflowers of baſe extraction thus peſume
If flowers of
Gloss Note
low birth
base extraction
thus presume,
401
And enviously my Glory thus impede
And enviously my glory thus impede,
402
And Soe audaciouſly before mee plead
And so audaciously before me plead?
403
I haue hitherto
Physical Note
“d” written over “t”
triumphd
, and must I now?
I have hitherto triumphed, and must I now,
404
fflora defend, to meaner bevties bow
Gloss Note
The expression, in reference to the classical goddess Flora, is analogous to “God forbid.”
Flora defend
, to
Gloss Note
inferior in rank or quality
meaner
beauties bow?
405
Shee from the Alps, and I from Heaven deſcended
Gloss Note
the Auricula (a mountain plant)
She from the Alps
, and I from heaven descended;
406
If Shee prevailes?
Physical Note
second “e” blotted
She’es
inifintely befriended
If she prevails, she’s infinitely
Gloss Note
promoted
befriended
.
407
Doe but behould my Strang variety
Do but behold my strange variety:
408
Somtimes my Robes are like the Azure Skie
Sometimes my robes are like the
Gloss Note
blue
azure
sky;
409
Then I in purple my faire Limbs infold
Then I in purple my fair limbs enfold;
410
Then richly wrought w:th Silver, Black, & Gould
Then richly wrought with silver, black, and gold:
411
Ney more the tears w:ch trickle down my face
Nay, more: the tears which trickle down my face
412
Or Plinie lies doth propagate my race
(Or
Gloss Note
ancient Roman author of a famous work of natural history
Pliny
lies) doth
Gloss Note
Pliny writes that white lilies propagate at times “by means of a certain tearlike gum” (Book 11, Chapter 11, in The Natural History, trans. John Bostock, Perseus Digital Library Project).
propagate my race
.
413
If those whoſe bevty doe the rest outſhine,
If those whose beauty do the rest outshine
414
Triumphant bee; the priſe is onely mine.
Triumphant be, the prize is only mine.
The

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