Friday, April 29, 2011

Lope de Vega, Shakespeare and other Monsters of Nature

Lope de Vega, Cervantes' 'Monster of Nature', wrote a short treatise on the 'New Art of Writing Plays'. In it he described why he chose to write in a popular fashion rather than sticking to classical rules of art. His liberty (or license!) is comparable to the freedom and unrestraint of Shakespeare, and around 1613, Leonard Digges did, in fact, describe Shakespeare as England's 'Lope de Vega':

Will Baker: Knowinge
that Mr Mab: was to
sende you this Booke
of sonets, wch with Spaniards
here is accounted of their
lope de Vega as in Englande
we sholde of or: Will
Shakespeare. I colde not
but insert thus much to
you, that if you like
him not, you muste neuer
neuer reade Spanishe Poet
(In 1640, Leonard Digges also provided a poem about Shakespeare for John Benson's volume)

Lope de Vega appears to have suffered many of the same criticisms as Shakespeare. Jonson had accused Shakespeare of making monstrous, ill-formed plays; and it is interesting to think of Shakespeare while reading Lope de Vega's responses to his critics. The Spanish playwright demonstrates ample knowledge of the 'rules' he disregards, claiming that audiences in Spain would never tolerate classical restraint. A number of disparaging terms are discussed - and I am particularly interested in Lope de Vega's acceptance of the opprobrious term 'barbarous'. There have been a number of times in my 'deformed' ramblings that I have tried to link the apparently paradoxical and seemingly unyokeable words 'Shakespeare' and 'barbaric' together. This treatise explains very simply how an author's refusal to submit to the constraints of classical aesthetics can be construed as evidence of his 'barbarism' and his shameless appeal to 'ignorance'.

This is how we should view Jonson's disparaging 'small Latine, less Greeke' remark. Shakespeare knew the rules (he parades them in _Hamlet_ and enacts them (pententially?) in _The Tempest_), but, happily for the world, he chose another way. It is evident that Jonson believed Shakespeare chose the wrong way. IMO, this is the indisputable significance of the Droeshout engraving's two left arms. The figure is incapable of right or dexterous (correct) writing. Shakespeare, like Lope de Vega, may have achieved popular fame and gained the applause of the multitude - but in Jonson's learned opinion it was at the expense of his artistic integrity. And, for Jonson, without virtue there could be no 'good fame'. Only those that embodied virtue should be set up as models or exemplars for others to fashion themselves after.

Lope de Vega freely admits that he has written his plays 'without art', an ironic echo of  Drummond's report that Jonson said Shakespeare "wanted art'. He admits that from a classical perspective his plays are aesthetic monsters (Minotaurs, chimaeras), and yet he suggests that in mixing elements he follows the example of Nature, for it is 'through such variety it [Nature] is beautiful.'

Brander Matthew introduction to "The New Art of Writing Play"s observes its imitation of Horace's Epistle to the Pisos - his 'Art of Poetry' - the text that also provides the main key to Jonson's overt and covert criticisms of Oxford/Shakespeare.

While I do not believe that the opinions of Lope de Vega and those of Shakespeare were identical -  I think he displays a fine, ironical understanding of the opinions of his 'learned' critics. 'Learning's' attacks on 'Ignorance' played out in English dramatic criticism as well, with Ben Jonson leading the charge against Shakespeare and other rude and unruly 'native' dramatists.


Lucius Cary, 2nd Viscount FALKLAND, Jonsonus Virbius

...How in an IGNORANT, and LEARN'D AGE he swaid,
(Of which the first he found, the second made)
How He, when he could know it, reapt his Fame,
And long out-liv'd the envy of his Name:


John Beaumont , Jonsonus Virbius

...Twas he that found (plac'd) in the seat of wit,
DULL grinning IGNORANCE, and banish'd it;
He on the prostituted stage appears
To make men hear, not by their eyes, but ears;
Who painted virtues, that each one might know,
And point the man, that did such treasure owe :
So that who could in JONSON'S lines be high
Needed not honours, or a riband buy ;
But vice he only shewed us in a glass,
Which by reflection of those rays that pass,
Retains the figure lively, set before,
And that withdrawn, reflects at us no more;
So, he observ'd the like decorum, when
*He whipt the vices, and yet spar'd the men* :
When heretofore, the Vice's only note,
And sign from virtue was his party-coat;
When devils were the last men on the stage,
And pray'd for plenty, and the PRESENT AGE.


...Thou taughtest the RUDER AGE,
To speake by Grammer; and reformd'st the Stage:
thy Comick sock induc'd such purged sense,
A Lucrece might have heard without offence.

Henry King, Jonsonus Virbius


Who first reform'd our Stage with Justest Lawes,
And was the first best Judge in your owne Cause?
Who (when his Actors trembled for Applause)

Could (with a noble Confidence) preferre
His owne, by right, to a whole Theater;
From Principles which he knew could not erre...

L.Cl. Jonsonus Virbius


...Never did so much strength, or such a spell
Of Art, and eloquence of papers dwell.
For whil'st he in colours, full and true,
Mens natures, fancies, and their humours drew
In method, order, matter, sence and grace,
Fitting each person to his time and place;
Knowing to move, to slacke, or to make haste,
Binding the middle with the first and last:
He fram'd all minds, and did all passions stirre,
And with a BRIDLE guide the Theater.

Shackerley Marmion, Jonsonus Virbius

Jonson on Shakespeare

 He was, indeed, honest, and of an open and free
nature, had an excellent phantasy, brave notions, and gentle
expressions, wherein he flowed with that facility that sometimes it
was necessary he should be *stopped*.  "Sufflaminandus erat," as
Augustus said of Haterius.  His wit was in his own power; would the
*rule* of it had been so, too.


To the Deceased Author of these Poems (William Cartwright)

Jasper Mayne

For thou to Nature had’st joyn’d Art, and skill.
In Thee Ben Johnson still *HELD* Shakespeare’s Quill:
A Quill, *RUL'D* by sharp Judgement, and such Laws,
As a well studied Mind, and Reason draws.
Thy Lamp was cherish’d with suppolied of Oyle,
Fetch’d from the Romane and the Graecian soyle.


The New Art of Writing Plays





Addressed to the Academy at Madrid. 

1. You command me, noble spirits, flow- 
er of Spain, who in this congress and re- 
nowned academy will in short space of time 
surpass not only the assemblies of Italy 
which Cicero, envious of Greece, made fa- 
mous with his own name, hard by the Lake 
of Avernus, but also Athens where in the 
Lyceum of Plato was seen high conclave of 
philosophers, to write you an art of the 
play which is today acceptable to the taste of 
the crowd. 

2. Easy seems this subject, and easy it 
would be for anyone of you who had written 
very few comedies, and who knows more 
out the art of writing them and of all these 
things; for what condemns me in this task is
that I have written them without art. 

3. Not because I was ignorant of the pre- 
cepts; thank God, even while I was a tyro in 
grammar, I went through the books which 
treated the subject, before I had seen the sun 
run its course ten times from the Ram to the 

4.  But because, in fine, I found that com- 
edies were not at that time, in Spain, as their 
first devisers in the world thought that they 
should be written; but rather as many rude 
fellows managed them, who confirmed the 
crowd in its own crudeness; and so they were 
introduced in such wise that he who now 
writes them artistically dies without fame 
and guerdon; for custom can do more 
among those who lack light of art than reason
and force.
5. True it is that I have sometimes writ- 
ten in accordance with the art which few 
know; but, no sooner do I see coming from 
some other source the monstrosities full of 
painted scenes where the crowd congregates 
and the women who canonize this sad busi- 
ness, than I return to that same barbarous 
habit; and when I have to write a comedy I 
lock in the precepts with six keys, I banish 
Terence and Plautus from my study that they 
may not cry out at me; for truth, even in 
dumb books, is wont to call aloud; and I 
write in accordance with that art which they 
devised who aspired to the applause of the 
crowd; for, since the crowd pays for the 
comedies, it is fitting to talk foolishly to it to 
satisfy its taste. 

6. Yet true comedy has its end estab- 
lished like every kind of poem or poetic art,  
and that has always been to imitate the ac-  
tions of men and to paint the customs of their 
age. Furthermore, all poetic imitation what- 
soever is composed of three things, which 
are discourse, agreeable verse, harmony, that 
is to say music, which so far was common 
also to tragedy; comedy being different from 
tragedy in that it treats of lowly and plebeian 
actions, and tragedy of royal and great ones. 
Look whether there be in our comedies few 
7. Auto was the name given to them, for 
they imitate the actions and the doings of 
the crowd. Lope de Rueda was an example 
in Spain of these principles, and today are 
to be seen in print prose comedies of his so 
lowly that he introduces into them the doings 
of mechanics and the love of the daughter 
of a smith; whence there has remained the 
custom of calling the old comedies entre- 
meses [enterludes], where the art persists in all its force, 
there being one action and that between ple- 
beian people ; for an entremes with a king has 
never been seen. And thus it is shown how 
the art, for very lowness of style, came to be 
held in great disrepute, and the king in the 
comedy to be introduced for the ignorant. 

 Davies of Hereford's epigram "To Our English Terence, Mr. Will: Shake- 
 speare", published in 1610 in Davies's The Scourge of Folly. 
Some say (good Will) which I, in sport, do sing, 
 Had'st thou not played some Kingly parts in sport, 
 Thou hadst been a companion for a King; 
 And been a King among the meaner sort. 
 Some others rail; but, rail as they think fit, 
 Thou hast no railing, but, a reigning Wit: 
     And HONESTY thou sow'st, which they do reap; 
     So, to increase their stock which they do keep. 

Author: Cooper, Thomas, 1517?-1594.
Title: Thesaurus linguae Romanae & Britannicae

  • Ludus,
  • ludi, m. g. Cic. Play in actes: mirth in wordes: sport: game: pastime.
Ludus pro ioco accipitur quandoque.
Iesting in wordes: sport.
Ludo, Ablatiuus.
In sport or pastime.

¶Ludi, in plurali.
Common games, sightes, or pageants to delight the people.
Lusus, huius lusus, m. g.
A play or sport: dalying: pastime: recreation.
 Ludius, ludij, m. g.
A player in enterludes: a dauncer.
Ludo, ludis, lusi, lusum lúdere.
To playe: to mocke, or deceyue: to laugh to scorne: to iest: to make disport: to daly: to finde pastime: to sport: to play as one doth on instrume~ts.
Ars lucra.
A dalying and tryfling art as playing with puppets and such lyke.

Jonson, Staple of News, Prologue for the Court

The P R O L O G U E for the C O U R T.

Work not smelling of the Lamp, to night,
   But fitted for your Majesty's Disport,
   And writ to the MERIDIAN of Your Court,
We bring; and hope it may produce Delight:
The rather, being offered as a Rite,
            To Scholars, that can judge, and fair report
            The Sense they hear, above the VULGAR SORT
Of Nut-crackers, that only come for SIGHT...

Lope de Vega, con't.

12. But now I perceive that you are 
saying that this is merely translating books 
and wearying you with painting this mixed- 
up affair. Believe me there has been a rea- 
son why you should be reminded of some of 
these things; for you see that you ask me 
to describe the art of writing plays in Spain, 
where whatever is written is in defiance of 
art; and to tell how they are now written 
contrary to the ancient rule and to what is 
founded on reason, is to ask me to draw on 
my experience, not on art, for art speaks 
truth which the ignorant crowd gainsays. 

13. If then, you desire art, I beseech 
you, men of genius, to read the very learned 
Robortello of Udine and you will see in what 
he says concerning Aristotle and especially 
in what he writes about comedy, as much as 
is scattered among many books; for every- 
thing of today is in a state of confusion. 

14. If you wish to have my opinion of 
the comedies which now have the upper hand 
and to know why it is necessary that the
crowd with its laws should maintain the vile 
chimera of this comic monster, I will tell you 
what I hold, and do you pardon me, since I 
must obey whoever has power to command 
me, that, gilding the error of the crowd, I 
desire to tell you of what sort I would have 
them; for there is no recourse but to follow 
art observing a mean between the two ex- 

15. "Let the subject be chosen and do not 
be amused, may you excuse these precepts ! 
if it happens to deal with kings; tho, 
for that matter, I understand that Philip 
the Prudent, King of Spain and our lord, 
was offended at seeing a king in them ; either 
because the matter was hostile to art or be- 
cause the royal authority ought not to be 
represented among the lowly and the vulgar. 

1 6. This is merely turning back to the 
Old Comedy, where we see that Plautus in- 
troduced gods, as in his 'Amphitryon' he rep- 
resents Jupiter. God knows that I have dif- 
ficulty in giving this my approbation, since 
Plutarch, speaking of Menander, does not 
highly esteem Old Comedy. But since we 
are so far away from art and in Spain do it 
a thousand wrongs, let the learned this once 
close their lips. 
17. Tragedy mixed with comedy and 
Terence with Seneca, tho it be like another 
minotaur of Pasiphae, will render one part 
grave, the other ridiculous; for this variety 
causes much delight. Nature gives us good 
example, for through such variety it is beau- 
28. But of all, nobody can I call more 
barbarous than myself, since in defiance of 
art I dare to lay down precepts, and I allow 
myself to be borne along in the vulgar cur- 
rent, wherefore Italy and France call me 
ignorant. But what can I do if I have writ- 
ten four hundred and eighty-three comedies, 
along with one which I have finished this 
week? For all of these, except six, gravely 
sin against art. Yet, in fine, I defend what I 
have written, and I know that, tho they 
might have been better in another manner, 
they would not have had the vogue which 
they have had; for sometimes that which is 
contrary to what is just, for that very reason, 
pleases the taste. 

Shakespeare may have written after his own manner to please himself and to please his audience. After all, it was the duty of the courtier to please. Jonson's strident, pedantic manner must have been an unpleasant experience for many. And yet Shakespeare was 'of the court' - and as Jonson knew and wrote in _Cynthia's Revels_ the court was the fountainhead of manners, and the whole country looked to imitate the behaviours that had their origins there.

_Cynthia's Revels_

"Princes that would their People should do well,
"Must at themselves begin, as at the Head;
"For Men, by their EXAMPLE, pattern out
"Their Imitations, and regard of Laws:
"A vertuous Court a World to Vertue draws.

At the time of _Cynthia's Revels_, Jonson seems to have been able to attack Oxford/Shakespeare/Amorphus quite openly by employing the stratagem of two 'races' at court - a 'better' race and, presumably, an inferior one. What before might have been construed as an attack on the court and possibly the Queen herself was now presented as an attempt to 'reform' certain undesirables at court whose manners and morals had the potential to bring the entire court into disrepute. If these unruly courtiers could not be reformed or restrained, Jonson/Crites has Cynthia herself declare their fate:

"Dear Arete, and Crites, to you two
We give the Charge; impose what Pains you please:
Remembring ever what we first decreed,
Since Revels were proclaim'd, let now none bleed."

The chief of these 'unauthorized' courtiers is Amorphus:

...first I'll give ye the others Character, which may
make his the clearer. He that is with him is Amorphus
a Traveller, one so made out of the mixture and shreds
of forms, that himself is truly deform'd.(Jonson)

E  P  I  G  R  A  M  S . Jonson


Poor POET-APE, that would be thought our chief,
   Whose works are e'en the frippery of wit,
From brokage is become so bold a thief,
   As we, the robb'd, leave rage, and pity it.
At first he made low shifts, would pick and glean,
   Buy the reversion of old plays ;  now grown
To a little wealth, and credit in the scene,
   He takes up all, makes each man's wit his own :
And, told of this, he slights it.  Tut, such crimes
   The sluggish gaping auditor devours ;
He marks not whose 'twas first : and after-times
   May judge it to be his, as well as ours.
Fool !  as if half eyes will not know a fleece
   From locks of wool, or shreds from the whole piece ?


Against Amorphus' and Poet-Ape's shapeless 'mixtures and shreds of forms', (mirroring the minotaurs and chimaeras  of Lope de Vega), Jonson invokes an image of rectitude and integrity - a classical 'even and proportioned body'. Jonson presents his art as virtuous and transformative,  possessing the power to  '[make men's] minds like the things he writes':

Timber, Jonson
(In the difference of wits, note 10) Not. 10.—

It cannot but come to pass that these men who commonly seek to do more than enough may sometimes happen on something that is good and great; but very seldom:  and when it comes it doth not recompense the rest of their ill.  For their jests, and their sentences (which they only and ambitiously seek for) stick out, and are more eminent, because all is sordid and vile about them; as lights are more discerned in a thick darkness than a faint shadow. Now, because they speak all they can (however unfitly), they are thought to have the greater copy; where the learned use ever election and a mean, they look back to what they intended at first, and *make all an even and proportioned body*.

The true artificer will not run away from Nature as he were afraid of her, or depart from life and the likeness of truth, but speak to the capacity of his hearers.  And though his language differ from the vulgar somewhat, it shall not fly from all humanity, with the Tamerlanes and Tamer- chains of the late age, which had nothing in them but the scenical strutting and furious vociferation to warrant them to the ignorant gapers.  He knows it is his only art so to carry it, as none but artificers perceive it.  In the meantime, perhaps, he is called barren, dull, lean, a poor writer, or by what contumelious word can come in their cheeks, by these men who, without labour, judgment, knowledge, or almost sense, are received or preferred before him. He gratulates them and their fortune.  Another age, or juster men, will acknowledge the virtues of his studies, his wisdom in dividing,his subtlety in arguing, with what strength he doth inspire his readers, with what sweetness he strokes them; in inveighing, what sharpness; in jest, what urbanity he uses; how he doth reign in men's affections; how invade and break in upon them, and makes their minds like the thing he writes.  Then in his elocution to behold what word is proper, which hath ornaments, which height, what is beautifully translated, where figures are fit, which gentle, which strong, to show the composition manly; and how he hath avoided faint, obscure, obscene, sordid, humble, improper, or effeminate phrase; which is not only praised of the most, but commended (which is worse), especially for that it is naught.


Author: Cooper, Thomas, 1517?-1594.
Title: Thesaurus linguae Romanae & Britannicae 

·  Monstrum, monstri, n. g.
A monster: that exceedeth, lacketh, or is disordred in natural forme. Any thing done against the course of nature. A token or shewing: a thing that signifieth.
Monstra narrare, siue nuntiare.
To tell meruaylous and straunge things against the course of nature and reason.
Monstróse, pen. pro. Aduerbium.
Monstrously: straungelye: contrarie to nature.
·  Monstrífice, pen. cor. Aduerbium. Monstrously: straungely: in wonderfull maner.


Jonson, _Bartholomew Fair_ (1614), Ind., ed. Herford & Simpson vi (1938), pp. 16f:

If there be never a Servant-monster I’ the Fayre; who can help it? He sayes; nor a nest of ANTIQUES? He is loth to make Nature afraid in his Playes, like those that beget Tales, Tempests, and such like Drolleries, to mixe his head with other mens heeles, let the concupiscence of Jigges and Dances, raigne as strong as it will amongst you: yet if the Puppets will please any body, they shall be entreated to come in.

Ars lucra.
A dalying and tryfling art as playing with puppets and such lyke.

"Science and the Secrets of Nature"

by William Eamon

The distinguishing mark of the courtier, according to Castiglione, was grazia, or grace, "a seasoning without which all the other properties and good qualities would be of little worth."  Essentially identical with elegance, urbanity, and refinement, grace was the highest achievement of culture.  Grazia may be displayed in any action, but the key to it was an art for which Castiglione coined the term sprezzatura, a kind of smoothness and nonchalance that hides the effort that goes into a difficult performance.  However, "nonchalance" conveys only part of the meaning of sprezzatura.  The root of this untranslatable word is the verb sprezzare, meaning to SCORN or despise.  Chen Castiglione demands that the courtier act with "una certa sprezzatura" toward what is unimportant, he implies acting with an attitude of disdain and scorn for normal human limitations or physical necessities.  Castiglione put it down as a "universal rule" of courtly behavior that to achieve gracefulness one must "practice in all things a certain sprezzatura, so as to conceal all art and make whatever is done or said appear to be without effort and almost without any thought about it."  The more difficult the performance, the greater the possibility of manifesting sprezzatura, the art that makes what is difficult seem simple and natural.  This is why, when a courtier accomplishes an action with sprezzatura, his behavior elicits another characteristic courtly response, meraviglia, or wonder: "because everyone knows the difficulty of things that are rare and well done; wherefore facility in such things causes the greatest wonder."
Courtly virtuosity, with its feigned disregard for normal limitations and the high esteem it attached to wonderment, fostered - indeed idealized - a dilettantish approach to intellectual and cultural pursuits. The accomplished courtier did not pursue learning with the diligence of a scholar, nor play the lute like a professional, nor fight like a condottiere.  He performed everything with sprezzatura, which made his actions appear as a pastime, success as a matter of course.  *Feigning his accomplishments as natural* made the courtier seem to to be the master of himself, of society's rules, and even of physical laws.  Holding himself above the common crowd, disdaining the obvious and merely useful, he turned his curiosity toward what was obscure, rare, and "marvelous."

Lineamenta animi.
The fashion and shape of the minde.

A Strange Sign:

 Ludos aliquem facere.
To dally and scoffe at one: to make a mocking stocke.


Jonson, _Every Man in his Humour_

wrong not the quality of your desert, with looking
downward, Couz; but hold up your Head, so: and
let the IDEA of what you are, be portray'd i' your FACE,
that Men may read i' your Physnomy, (Here, within
this place is to be seen the TRUE, RARE, and accomplish'd MONSTER, or
MIRACLE of Nature, which is all one.) 


All action is of the MIND and the mirror of the mind is the FACE, its index the eyes.-- Cicero

I can refell [refute] that Paradox of those, which hold the face to be the Index of the minde.
[1601 Jonson Cynthia's Revels - Amorphus the Deformed]

Cf. [Cicero Orator lx.] ut imago est animi voltus sic indices oculi, *the face is a picture of the mind* as the eyes are its interpreter; L. vultus est index animi (also oculus animi index), the face (also, eye) is the index of the mind.

Author: Cooper, Thomas, 1517?-1594.
Title: Thesaurus linguae Romanae & Britannicae

·  Prodigium, prodigij, n. g.
A thing seldome seene, which signifieth that some great good or ill shall followe: a thyng monstrous or against nature.
Prodigio simile.
A monstrous thyng: a wonderous matter.
·  Prodigiôsus, pen. prod. Adiect.
That giueth a straunge signe or token: that is monstrous contrary to the common course of nature.

Act V
Scene VIII

Macduff.  Then yield thee, coward,
And live to be the show and gaze o' the time.         
We'll have thee, as our rarer monsters are,
Painted upon a pole,  and underwrit,
"Here may you see the tyrant."


Mawson, C.O.S., ed. (1870-1938). Roget's International Thesaurus.

872. Prodigy.

NOUN:   PRODIGY, phenomenon, wonder, wonderment, marvel, miracle; freak,
freak of nature, lusus naturOE [L.], monstrosity; monster
(unconformity) [See Unconformity]; curiosity, infant prodigy, lion,
sight, spectacle; jeu -, coup- de théâtre [F.]; GAZINGSTOCK; sign; St.
Elmo's -fire, - light; portent [See Omen].
  what no words can paint; wonders of the world; annus mirabilis [L.];
dignus vindice nodus [L.].
  DETONATION; bursting of a -shell, - bomb, - mine; volcanic eruption,
peal of thunder; thunderclap, thunderbolt, thunderstone [obs. or dial.


   1. Natura il fece e poi roppe la stampa.
   2. A schoolboy's tale, the wonder of an hour!--Byron
   3. Stones have been known to move and trees to speak.--Macbeth
   4. 'Twas strange, 'twas passing strange; 'Twas pitiful, 'twas
wondrous pitiful.--Othello 
PETRUCHIO.  Were it better, I should rush in thus.

But where is Kate? where is my lovely bride?
How does my father? Gentles, methinks you frown:
And wherefore GAZE this goodly company,
As if they saw some wondrous monument,
Some comet, or unusual PRODIGY?


GAZING-STOCK - gaz'-ing-stok: This obsolete word occurs twice: (1) in Nah 3:6, as the translation of ro'i, "a sight" or "spectacle" (from ra'ah, "to look," "see," also "to look down upon," "despise,"); "I will .... make thee vile, and will set thee as a gazing-stock," as one set up to be gazed at, mocked and despised--a form of punishment in olden times; compare "mocking stock" (2 Macc 7:7), and "laughing- stock" still in use. The Hebrew word occurs only here and in Gen 16:13; 1 Sam 16:12; Job 7:8; 33:21, in which places it does not have the same bad meaning; for a similar threatening compare Isa 14:16; Jer 51:37. (2) In Heb 10:33, it is the translation of theatrizo, "to bring upon the theater," "to be made a spectacle of," "made a gazing stock both by reproaches and afflictions"; compare 1 Cor 4:9, theatron ginomai, where Paul says the apostles were "made a spectacle unto the world," the King James Version margin "(Greek) theater." The reference in both instances is to the custom of exhibiting criminals, and especially gladiators, men doomed to death, in theaters. "In the morning men are exposed to lions and bears; at mid-day to their spectators; those that kill are exposed to one another; the victor is detained for another slaughter; the conclusion of the fight is death" (Seneca, Ep. vii, quoted by Dr. A. Clarke on 1 Cor 4:9). We are apt to forget what the first preachers and professors of Christianity had to endure.
W. L. Walker

Thursday, April 28, 2011

To Deform: to disgrace: to dishonest: to disfigure: to deface

Author: Cooper, Thomas, 1517?-1594.
Title: Thesaurus linguae Romanae & Britannicae
Date: 1578

·  Deformo, deformas, deformâre.
To destroy or waste: to disfigure: to marre the fashion of: to disgrace: to dishonest: to deforme: to defile. Also to graue: to pourtray: to drawe out like a painter: to fashion: to make the forme of: to discriue.
Canitiem immundo deformat puluere.
Comas deformat arena.
Amictu se deformare.
To disfigure.
Castrorum pars incendio deformata.
Was destroyed.
Ludi deformati, inquinati, peruersi, conturbati.
Horrida vultum deformat macies.
Multos honesti ordinis, deformatos prius stigmatu~ notis, ad metalla & munitiones viarum, aut bestias condemnauit.
Disfigured or disgraced: dishonested.
Deformata ignominia imago.
Deformatus & decoloratus. Author ad
¶Deformare aliquem.
To dishonest, or disgrace.
Ornare aliquem & Deformare, contraria.
Deformatus atque ornamentis omnibus spoliatus.
Deformata ciuitas.
A citie brought cleane out of order and fashion.
Vitijs deformatus.
Dishonested or distained with vices.
Deformatus corpore, fractus animo.
Deformare genus & fortunam honestam.
To dishonest a worshipfull stocke.
Caue deformes multa bona vno vitio.
See that thou deface not many good qualities with one vice.
To pourtray, or draw.
Marmora deformata.
Images wrought in marble: or marble that is graued or wrought in.
Deformare areas.
To drawe out plattes: to fashyon quarters in a gardeine.
Vt deformare possit imitatione~ aedificiorum. That he may pourtray or draw out plattes. &c.
Deformare locum alique~ ad literariae tabulae speciem.
To make or fashion like.
Deformati parietes.
¶Certos atque deformatos fructus ostendere.
To shew fruites in their perfite forme and shape.
Quae a fortuna ita deformata sunt. Which are in such sort brought to perfite forme by fortune.
¶Deformare aliquem. To discriue and poynt out ones condicions.
Ille quem suprà deformaui.
·  Deformátio, onis, f. g.
Verbale. Liu.
A deforming, a defacing or disfiguring.
·  Deformis, & hoc deforme.
Deformed: foule: vnhonest: vncomely.
Deformis & horridus ager.
An yll fauoured grounde, out of fashion and tilth.
Animal deforme.
Arundo deformis.
Aspectus deformis.
The sight of a thing dishonest.
Cadauer deforme.
Campi deformes.
Corpus deforme.
Without shape of man.
Saeua ac deformis tota vrbe facies.
Deformis luctu laurea.
Littora deformia.
Malum deforme.
Turpiculae res & quosi deformes.
Senium· deforme.
An ill fauored sight, vncomely to behold.
Tecta deformia.
Vita deformis.
Filtie and dishonest.
·  Deformior, Comparatiuum.
Deformius nihil est ardelione sene.
Non est deforme.
It is fayre and goodly to beholde.
·  Defórmitas, pen. cor. huius deformitâtis, f. g.
Deformitie· vncomelinesse: yl fauourednesse. A blemish in ones fauour
Deformitas & corporis vitium.
Deformitas & prauitas.
Agendi deformitas.
Deformitas animi, & corporis prauitas.
Insignis ad deformitatem.
Dishonestie: vncomelinesse.
Dignitas & deformitas, pugnantia.
Deformitas fugae, negligentiaeque alicuius.
The dishonestie and reproch of ones fleeing.
·  Deformiter, pen. cor. Aduerb.
Ilfauoredly: vnhonestly.


(Harvey prints his poem Speculum Tuscanismi disclaiming it as 'a bolde Satyricall Libell lately devised at the Instauce of an old friend.' It mocks Sidney's ENEMY the Earl of Oxford (See Katherine Duncan-Jones, Sir Philip Sidney: Courtier Poet, London, 1991, pp.166-7)

'Tell me in good sooth, doth it not too evidently appeare, that this English Poet [Oxford] wanted but a good PATTERNE before his eyes, as it might be some delicate, and choyce elegant Poesie of good M. Sidneys, or M. Dyers (ouer very Castor, & Pollux for such and many greater matters) when this trimme geere was in hatching: Much like some Gentlewooman, I coulde name in England, who by all Phisick and Physiognomie too, might as well have brought forth all goodly faire children, as they have now some YLFAVOURED and DEFORMED, had they at the tyme of their Conception, had in sight, the amiable and gallant beautifull Pictures of ADONIS, Cupido, Ganymedes, or the like, which no doubt would have wrought such deepe impression in their fantasies, and imaginations, as their children, and perhappes their Childrens children to, myght have thanked them for, as long as they shall have Tongues in their heades."
Sidney: The Critical Heritage By Martin Garrett (pp.92-93)

VandA dedication - Shakespeare

 But if the first HEIRE of my inuention proue DEFORMED, I shall be sorie it had so noble a god-father : and neuer after eare so barren a land, for feare it yeeld me still so bad a haruest, 

"To My Book" by Ben Jonson

It will be looked for, book, when some but see
Thy title, Epigrams, and named of me,
Thou should'st be bold, licentious, full of gall,
Wormwood, and sulphur, sharp, and toothed withal;
Become a petulant thing, hurl ink, and wit,
As madmen stones: not caring whom they hit.
Deceive their malice, who could wish it so.
And by thy wiser temper, let men know
Thou are not covetous of least self-fame.
Made from the hazard of another's shame:
Much less with lewd, profane, and beastly phrase,
To catch the world's loose laughter, or vain gaze.
He that departs with his own HONESTY
For VULGAR PRAISE, doth it too dearly buy.

Vulgar Praise:


To draw no envy, SHAKSPEARE, on thy name,
Am I thus ample to thy book and fame ;
While I confess thy writings to be such,
As neither Man nor Muse can praise too much.
'Tis true, and all men's suffrage. But these ways
Were not the paths I meant unto thy praise ;
For seeliest ignorance on these may light,
Which, when it sounds at best, but echoes right ;
Or blind affection, which doth ne'er advance
The truth, but gropes, and urgeth all by chance ;
Or crafty malice might pretend this praise,
And think to ruin where it seemed to raise.
These are, as some infamous bawd or whore
Should praise a matron ; what could hurt her more ?
But thou art proof against them, and, indeed,
Above the ill fortune of them, or the need.
I therefore will begin: Soul of the age!
The applause ! delight ! the wonder of our stage!

Davies of Hereford's epigram "To Our English Terence, Mr. Will: Shake- speare", published in 1610 in Davies's The Scourge of Folly.

Some say (good Will) which I, in sport, do sing,
Had'st thou not played some Kingly parts in sport,
Thou hadst been a companion for a King;
And been a King among the meaner sort.
Some others rail; but, rail as they think fit,
Thou hast no railing, but, a reigning Wit:
    And HONESTY thou sow'st, which they do reap;
    So, to increase their stock which they do keep.

Jennifer Richards _Rhetoric and Courtliness in Early Modern Literature_

"Sixteenth century humanists inherited an overlapping but distinct Socratic dialogue style which informed that rival genre to the courtesy book, the husbandry manual. The figures of the courtier and the husbandman offer different styles of social and commercial exchange and also different styles of 'honesty' which are not easily translated into a modern political idiom. to understand these traditions we will nee to be more open in our thinking about where we locate 'subversive' or 'conservative' agendas. *The representation of the courtier as dissembling in much modern criticism, for example, indicates the victory of the plain husbandman as a social and cultural authority*. Yet, there are good reasons why such plain-speakers are not to be trusted, not least because there is no way of knowing whether the claim to be telling the truth, or the promise of transparency, however plainly put, is not also a rhetorical ploy which aims to occlude the interests of others. (p.5)
One idea which is examined closely (note-in Guazzo's Civile Conversation) is the virtue of 'honesty', a virtue which serves as a glue to all social relationships. In the course of his conversation with Anniball, William will learn to appreciate the greater honesty of the dissimulative courtier rather than the anti-social simplicity of the 'scholler'. For the scholar only maintains his simple lifestyle by removing himself from the rough and tumble of daily social interaction, whereas the courtier attempts to balance honestly - or DECOROUSLY - personal aspirations with social duty...I want to explore how the character of Anniball makes William honest and sociable in Civile Conversation, and also how, in the attempt, the concept of 'honesty' is defined in such a way as to make plain the potential of others. I will also explore, however, how seemingly honest conversation can equally disguise the power dynamic of intimate relationships...'Honesty' remains the crucial term here: how we define it will affect profoundly* the way in which we imagine people should relate to one another*" (p.23)


William Empson points out that 'honest' and 'honesty' are used  52 times in Othello, writing that 'in Othello, divergent uses of th(is) key word are found for all the main characters; even the attenuated clown plays upon it; the unchaste Bianca, for instance, snatches a moment to claim that she is more honest than Emilia the thief of the handkerchief; and with all the variety of use the ironies on the word mount up steadily to the end. Such is the general power of the writing that this is not obtrusive, but if all but the phrases involving honest were in the style of Ibsen the effect would be a symbolical charade. Everyone calls Iago honest once or twice, but with Othello it becomes an obsession; at the crucial moment just before Emilia exposes Iago he keeps howling the word out. (William Empson, _Honest in Othello_)



1. Your love and pity doth the impression fill,
2. Which VULGAR scandal STAMPED upon my BROW;

Jonson - Poetaster
To the Reader


 Aut. But, they that have incens'd me, can in Soul
Acquit me of that guilt. *They know, I dare
To spurn, or bafful 'em; or squirt their Eyes
With Ink, or URINE: or I could do worse,
Arm'd with Archilochus fury, write Iambicks,
Should make the desperate lashers hang themselves;
Rhime 'em to Death, as they do Irish Rats
In drumming Tunes. Or, living, I could STAMP
Their FOREHEADS with those deep, and PUBLICK BRAND,
That the whole company of Barber-Surgeons
Should not take off, with all their Art, and Plaisters.
And these my Prints should last, still to be read
In their pale Fronts*: when, what they write 'gainst me,
Shall, like a FIGURE drawn in Water, fleet,
And the poor wretched Papers be imploy'd
To clothe Tabacco, or some cheaper Drug.
This I could do, and make them infamous.
But, to what end? when their own DEEDS have MARK'd 'em
And that I know, within his guilty Breast
Each slanderer bears a WHIP, that shall torment him,
Worse, than a million of these temporal Plagues:
Which to pursue, were but a Feminine humour,
And far beneath the Dignity of Man.


O for my sake do you with Fortune chide,
The guilty goddess of my harmful deeds,
That did not better for my life provide
Than public means which PUBLIC MANNERS breeds.
Thence comes it that my name receives a BRAND,
And almost thence my nature is subdued
To what it works in, like the dyer's hand:
Pity me then, and wish I were renewed,
Whilst like a willing patient I will drink
Potions of eisel 'gainst my strong infection;
No bitterness that I will bitter think,
Nor double penance, to correct correction.
Pity me then, dear friend, and I assure ye,
Ev'n that your pity is enough to cure me. 


No,  I AM THAT I AM,  and they that level
  At my ABUSES reckon up their own:
  I may be straight, though they themselves be bevel;
  By their rank thoughts my DEEDS must not be shown;

Iago - I confess it is my nature's plague/To spy into ABUSES.

For when my outward action doth demonstrate
The native act and figure of my heart
In compliment extern, 'tis not long after
But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve
For daws to peck at: I AM NOT WHAT I AM.


Jonson - Timber

Censura de poetis. - Nothing in our age, I have observed, is more preposterous than the running judgments upon poetry and poets; when we shall hear those things commended and cried up for the best writings which a man would scarce vouchsafe to wrap any wholesome drug in; he would never light his tobacco with them.  And those men almost named for miracles, who yet are so VILE that if a man should go about to examine and correct them, he must make all they have done but one blot.  Their good is so entangled with their bad as forcibly one must draw on the other' s death with it.  A sponge dipped in ink will do all:-
" - Comitetur Punica librum
Spongia. - " {44a}
Et paulò post,
" Non possunt . . . multæ . . . lituræ
. . . una litura potest."
Cestius - Cicero - Heath - Taylor - Spenser. - Yet their VICES have not hurt them; nay, a great many they have profited, for they have been loved for nothing else.  And this false opinion grows strong against the best men, if once it take root with the IGNORANT. Cestius, in his time, was preferred to Cicero, so far as the ignorant durst.  They learned him without book, and had him often in their mouths; but a man cannot imagine that thing so foolish or rude but will find and enjoy an admirer; at least a reader or spectator.  The puppets are seen now in despite of the players; Heath' s epigrams and the Sculler' s poems have their applause.  There are never wanting that dare prefer the worst preachers, the worst pleaders, the worst poets; not that the better have left to write or speak better, but that they that hear them judge worse; Non illi pejus dicunt, sed hi corruptius judicant.  Nay, if it were put to the question of the water- rhymer' s works, against Spenser' s, *I doubt not but they would find more suffrages; because the most favour common vices, out of a prerogative the VULGAR have to lose their judgments and like that which is naught.*
Poetry, in this latter age, hath proved but a mean mistress to such as have wholly addicted themselves to her, or given their names up to her family.  They who have but saluted her on the by, and now and then tendered their visits, she hath done much for, and advanced in the way of their own professions (both the law and the gospel) beyond all they could have hoped or done for themselves without her favour.  Wherein she doth emulate the judicious but preposterous bounty of the time' s grandees, who accumulate all they can upon the parasite or fresh-man in their friendship; but think an old client or honest servant bound by his place to write and starve.
Indeed, the multitude commend writers as they do fencers or wrestlers, who if they come in robustiously and put for it with a deal of violence are received for the braver fellows; when many times their own rudeness is a cause of their disgrace, and a slight touch of their adversary gives all that boisterous force the foil.  But in these things the unskilful are naturally deceived, and judging wholly by the bulk, think rude things greater than polished, and scattered more numerous than composed; nor think this only to be true in the sordid multitude, but the neater sort of our gallants; for all are the multitude, only they differ in clothes, not in judgment or understanding.

Othello on Iago -

This fellow's of exceeding honesty,
And knows all qualities, with a LEARNED spirit
Of human dealings.

Honesty in Othello
Paul A. Jorgensen

Iago's masterwork as Honesty is proving to Othello that Cassio and Desdemona are only SEEMING-honest. In the overt part of this business he resorts, as did the morality character in uncloaking scoundrels before the King, to expertly staged strategems - the handkerchief and the overheard conversation. But more subtle and devastating is his behaviour in the famous 'temptation scene,' where he seems merely to rely on his reputation for insight in such matters. Here he gives Othello the impression that, while believing Cassio to be dishonest, he is trying to suppress his knowledge.


Beware then thou render Mens Figures truly, and teach them no less to hate their Deformities, than to love their Forms -- Jonson, _Narcissus or Cynthia's Revels_

Author: Cooper, Thomas, 1517?-1594. 
Title: Thesaurus linguae Romanae & Britannicae
Dehonestus, Adiectiuum.
·  Dehonestamentum, ti, n. g. A thing that doth dishonest, disfigure, or disgrace.
Generis dehonestamentum.
The dishonesting of his stocke.
Oris dehonestamentum.
A disfiguring of.
Dehonestamentum corporis.
A rebuke or reproch.
Eo iuber viuere in nos dehonestamento.
He byddeth him leeue with that dispite or reproch towarde vs.

Honest Ben/Honest Iago

Othello: Act 2, Scene 1
IAGO [Aside.]
167   He takes her by the palm: ay, well said,
168   whisper: with as little a web as this will I
169   ensnare as great a fly as Cassio. Ay, smile upon
170   her, do; *I will gyve thee in thine own courtship*.
171   You say true; 'tis so, indeed: if such tricks as
172   these strip you out of your lieutenantry, it had
173   been better you had not KISSED your three FINGERS so
174   oft, which now again you are most apt to play the
175   sir in. Very good; well kissed! an excellent
176   courtesy! 'tis so, indeed. Yet again your fingers
177   to your lips? would they were CLYSTER-pipes for your sake!


Iago's Clyster:
Purgation, Anality, and the Civilizing Process
Ben Saunders
In this essay I will elaborate a hermeneutic strategy that builds on the hints provided by Iago's attraction to verbal figures of purgation, evacuation, and oral/anal substitution and displacement, as witnessed in this passage. By attending to the neglected (waste) matter of bodily purgation and regulation in this play, I hope not only to say something about early modern anality but also to broaden our sense of its relation to a historically emergent racist vocabulary. In the process I will expand on the (by-now) commonplace notion that Othello generates a good deal of its aesthetic effect, and emotional affect, through "a black/white opposition" that is "built into the play at every level." Assuming the centrality of a related opposition between civilization and barbarism, which I find reinscribed and deconstructed throughout the text, I will suggest that the process of ideological invention whereby "civilized" man is distinguished from his "barbaric" other emerges in Othello quite literally from the sewer. In this account, Iago represents not only a portrait of the villain as anal-retentive artist but also as the Shakespearean figure who expresses the (disavowed) centrality of lower- body functions to the production of "civilized" Christian masculinity-- and who therefore also best reveals the violent, disciplinary force that is the (again, disavowed) foundation of that "civilizing" process.
(snip)    "I cannot imagine any spectator leaving Othello feeling cleansed."Edward Pechter
An excretory précis of the plot of Othello therefore runs as follows: Iago talks shit, pumping pestilence into Othello's ear, literally filling Othello's head with shit, until he believes that his love object smells like shit, and comes to feel that he has actually been smeared with shit--shit that can be washed away only with Desdemona's blood. Then, upon killing her, Othello discovers that he has not removed the stain but has rather become the very substance that soils: along with everything else he touches, Iago has turned Othello into shit.
To conclude by returning briefly to the "clyster-pipes" that initially inspired my inquiry: these pipes may now look more unpleasant than ever, though in the context of the foregoing arguments, their invocation is perhaps less startling. For the entire text of Othello can be read as in some sense the result of Iago's investment in violent evacuation and purgation. Iago--who restores the "natural" order in terms of normative homo-social and racially pure power relations--might even see his actions as analogous to those of the early modern physician, restoring health to what he would consider a diseased body politic, clogged as it is with unhealthful foreign excrements that have risen from the lower extremities, where they belong, to positions of power and authority: "Work on, / My medicine, work!" he cries, as the fit seizes Othello and drives him to his knees (4.1.44-45). He hatches a plot to expunge Venetian society of everything he associates with lower-body functions: women, people of color, sexual desire. Iago's "monstrous birth" is no baby, then, but rather a tremendous evacuation--the inevitable and horrific consequence of a "diet of revenge." And the complete success of Iago's enema is attested to when this masterful shitmonger has nothing left to say: "Demand me nothing. What you know, you know. / From this time forth I never will speak word" (5.2.300-301). The clyster has done its work. Othello, Desdemona, Emilia, and Roderigo lie dead, and Iago is . . . empty. Silent. Purged. But Iago's sadistic drives have already exposed the civilized impulses toward order, control, and cleanliness, impulses that provide one linguistic matrix for modern racism, as rooted in a series of paradoxical disavowals and denials: the obsessive need for order that itself produces chaos; the tremendous appetite to deny appetite; the consuming passion to be free of passion; the excessive desire to eliminate all excess; the overpowering lust to banish lust. Shakespeare has personified the civilizing process in Iago, an anal-retentive proto-racist poet devoted to the terrible logic of the purge.

Vile Ibides/Clyster

From Poetaster
T O   T H E   R E A D E R.
If, by looking on what is past, thou hast deserv'd that Name, I am willing thou should'st yet know more, by that which follows, an Apologetical Dialogue; which was only once spoken upon the Stage, and all the Answer I ever gave to sundry impotent Libels then cast out (and some yet remaining) against me, and this Play. Wherein I take no pleasure to revive the Times; but that Posterity may make a difference between their Manners that provok'd me then, and mine that neglected them ever. For, in these Strifes, and on such Persons, were as wretched to affect a Victory, as it is unhappy to be committed with them. Non annorum canities est laudanda, sed morum.

note-Non annorum canities est laudanda, sed morum. Nullus pudor est ad meliora transire 1 ; "Not the ancienty of years, but of MANNERS, is commendable. No shame it is to pass to better.")

from To the Reader

Pol. O, but they lay particular imputations —
   Author. As what?   Pol. That all your writing, is meer rayling.
   Author. Ha! If all the Salt in the old Comœdy
Should be so censur'd, or the sharper wit
Of the bold Satyr, termed scolding Rage,
What Age could then compare with those, for BUFFOONS?
What should be said of Aristophanes,
Persius, or Juvenal? whose names we now
So glorifie in Schools, at least pretend it.
Ha' they no other?   Pol. Yes: they say you are slow,
And scarce bring forth a Play a Year.   Author. 'Tis true.
I would, they could not say that I did that.
There's all the Joy that I take i' their Trade,
Unless such Scribes as they might be proscrib'd
Th' abused Theaters. They would think it strange, now,
A Man should take but Colts-foot, for one day,
And, between whiles, spit out a better Poem
Than e're the Master of Art, or giver of Wit,
Their Belly made. Yet, this is possible,
If a free Mind had but the patience,
To think so much, together, and so vile.
But, that these base and beggerly conceits
Should carry it, by the multitude of Voices,
Against the most abstracted work, oppos'd
To the stuff'd Nostrils of the drunken rout!
O, this would make a learn'd and liberal Soul,
To rive his stained Quill, up to the Back,
And damn his long-watch'd Labours to the Fire;
Things, that were born, when none but the still Night,
And his dumb Candle, saw his pinching throes:
Were not his own free merit a more Crown
Unto his Travels, than their reeling Claps?
This 'tis, that strikes me silent, seals my Lips,
And apts me rather to sleep out my time,
Than I would waste it in contemned strifes,
With these VILE IBIDES, these unclean Birds,
That make their Mouths their CLYSTERS, and still PURGE
From their hot entrails. *But, I leave the MONSTERS
To their own fate*. And, since the Comick Muse
Hath prov'd so ominous to me, I will try
If Tragœdie have a more kind aspect;
Her favours in my next I will pursue,
Where, if I prove the pleasure but of one,
So he judicious be; He shall b' alone
A Theater unto me:

Othello - An honest man [Iago] he is, and hates the slime
That sticks on filthy deeds.

Narcissus/Oxford/Amorphus of _Cynthia's Revels_. Oxford saw his greatness 'boyed' by squeaking child actors. His honesty 'uncloaked' by Jonson/Crites/Criticus/Iago.

Upon Ben: Johnson, the most excellent of Comick Poets.

Mirror of Poets! Mirror of our Age!
Which her wholE Face beholding on thy stage,
Pleas'd and displeas'd with her owne faults endures,
A remedy, like Those whom Musicke cures,
Thou not alone those various inclinations,
Which Nature gives to Ages, Sexes, Nations,
Hast traced with thy All-resembling Pen,
But all that custome hath impos'd on Men,
Or ill-got Habits, which distort them so,
That scarce the Brother can the Brother know,
Is represented to the wondring Eyes,
Of all that see or read thy Comedies.
Whoever in those Glasses lookes may finde,
The spots return'd, or graces of his minde;
And by the helpe of so divine an Art,
At leisure view, and dresse his nobler part.
*NARCISSUS conzen'd by that flattering Well,
Which nothing could but of his beauty tell,
Had here discovering the DEFORM'D estate
Of his fond minde, preserv'd himselfe with hate*,

Iago(Crites/Criticus/Jonson) - For I am nothing if not critical.



Then must you speak
Of one that loved not wisely but too well,
Of one not easily jealous but, being wrought,
Perplexed in the extreme; of one whose hand,
Like the base Indian, threw a pearl away
Richer than all his tribe; of one whose subdued eyes,
Albeit unused to the melting mood,
Drop tears as fast as the Arabian trees
Their medicinable gum. Set you down this,
And say besides that in Aleppo once,
Where a malignant and a turbaned Turk
Beat a Venetian and traduced the state,
I took by th’ throat the circumcised dog
And smote him thus. (V.ii.341-354)


O! lest the world should task you to recite
What merit lived in me, that you should love
After my death,--dear love, forget me quite,
For you in me can nothing worthy prove.
Unless you would devise some virtuous lie,
To do more for me than mine own desert,
And hang more praise upon deceased I
Than niggard truth would willingly impart:
O! lest your true love may seem false in this
That you for love speak well of me untrue,
My name be buried where my body is,
And live no more to shame nor me nor you.
For I am shamed by that which I bring forth,
And so should you, to love things nothing worth.