Biography of William Strode
Born in 1602, the only son of Philip Strode, who belonged to an old Devonshire family, he was born at Plympton, Devonshire. From an early age he showed studious tendencies and was sent to Westminster School and Oxford. While at the University he began to manifest his poetic talents,and generally distinguished himself, being elected in 1629 Public Orator. He took orders and, on Richard Corbet (q.v.) becoming Bishop of Oxford, became his chaplain. Later he was Rector of E. Bredenham, Norfolk, and of Badley, Northants, and Canon of Christ Church.
On the outbreak of the Civil War he attached himself warmly to the cause of the King. He was a High Churchman, and had a reputation as "a witty and sententious preacher, an exquisite orator, and an eminent poet." Until the recovery of his poems by Mr. B. Dobell, he had fallen into absolute oblivion. As a poet he shines most in lyrics and elegies. With much of the artificiality of his age he shows gracefulness, a feeling for the country, and occasional gleams of tenderness. His play, The Floating Island, a political allegory, was produced in 1633 and played before the Court then on a visit to Oxford, where it was a subject of complaint that it had more moralising than amusement. Mr. Dobell, edited a book of his poems (The Poetical Works of William Strode) in 1907.
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William Strode Poems
A Riddle: On A Kiss
What thing is that, nor felt nor seene Till it bee given? a present for a Queene: A fine conceite to give and take the like: The giver yet is farther for to seeke;
A Song On The Baths
What Angel stirrs this happy Well, Some Muse from thence come shew't me, One of those naked Graces tell That Angels are for beauty:
These veines are nature's nett, These cords by art are sett.
On The Picture Of Two Dolphins In A Foun...
These dolphins twisting each on either side For joy leapt upp, and gazing there abide; And whereas other waters fish doe bring, Here from the fishes doe the waters spring,
Keepe On Your Maske And Hide Your Eye
Keepe on your maske, and hide your eye, For with beholding you I dye: Your fatall beauty, Gorgon-like, Dead with astonishment will strike;
A Paralell Between Bowling And Prefermen...
Preferment, like a Game at bowles, To feede our hope with diverse play Heer quick it runnes, there soft it rowles: The Betters make and shew the way.
In Commendation Of Musick
When whispering straynes doe softly steale With creeping passion through the hart, And when at every touch wee feele Our pulses beate and beare a part;
An Epitaph On Mr. Fishborne The Great Lo...
What are thy gaines, O death, if one man ly Stretch'd in a bed of clay, whose charity Doth hereby get occasion to redeeme Thousands out of the grave: though cold hee seeme
For A Gentleman, Who, Kissinge His Frien...
What mystery was this; that I should finde My blood in kissing you to stay behinde? 'Twas not for want of color that requirde My blood for paynt: No dye could be desirde
On The Life Of Man
What is our life? a play of passion; Our mirth the musick of division: Our mother's wombes the tyring houses bee Where wee are drest for tyme's short comedy:
A Translation Of The Nightingale Out Of ...
Now the declining sun 'gan downwards bend From higher heavens, and from his locks did send A milder flame, when near to Tiber's flow A lutinist allay'd his careful woe
We hugg, imprison, hang, and save, This foe, this friend, our Lord, our slave.
Consolatorium, Ad Parentes
Lett her parents then confesse That they beleeve her happinesse, Which now they question. Thinke as you Lent her the world, Heaven lent her you:
An Epitaph On Sr John Walter, Lord Cheif...
Farewell Example, Living Rule farewell; Whose practise shew'd goodness was possible, Who reach'd the full outstretch'd perfection Of Man, of Lawyer, and of Christian.
Happy Grave, thou dost enshrine
That which makes thee a rich mine:
Remember yet, 'tis but a loane;
And wee must have it back, Her owne,
The very same; Marke mee, the same:
Thou canst not cheat us with a lame
Deformed Carcase; Shee was fayre,
Fresh as Morning, sweete as Ayre:
Purer than other flesh as farre