Henry Peacham (1638) The Valley of Varietie, Epistles Dedicatory and To the Reader, unnumbered pages i-vi
And truly Noble,
Earle of DOVER, &c.
I have beene heretofore very much ingaged to your Honour, aswell for many noble Courtesies conferred upon mee, as your respect, and ever well-wishing towards mee, altogether unworthie, I confesse, so great a favour. I must heereunto adde that Dutie, wherein I stand obliged unto your Religious and Honorable COUNTESSE, since my last being at your house in Broad-street, for her really expressed favour to mee and mine: As also, to my Lord of Rochford, the hope of your ancient and renowned Family.
But since I am not able,1 Cum tota mea suppellex, sit Chartacea, as Erasmus saith of himself, To requite you with any thing but Paper; I offer unto your Honour, these selected Collections of mine, not altogether (at your houres of leisure) unworthie your view and perusall, since for ought I know, not any one of them hath spoken English before: beside, they are compact of Rarities, to enable Ingenious and Schollerly discourse. But howsoever, such as they are, I humbly present them to your Honours Patronage (whom I know ( as many more beside2) to be a true lover of the Church of God, as also of Learning, and all vertuous Parts:) And with them, my service to your Honour, and my most Noble Ladie; who shall ever be
To the Ingenious and
READER whosoever, these are Collections which I have, at leasureable houres, collected out of Pancirolla and other Authors, having intended a good while since, to have wholly translated that Booke into English; but having little leasure, and expecting lesse gaine for so great a labour, in these unthankfull times; wherein to be ignorant, is accounted by too many, to be a Gentleman-like Qualitie. I resolved to give the world a taste of the Fruit, before I opened the Basket; and if what I have done shall not dislike thee, I will proceed, and goe on with the Remainder: which doubtlesse cannot but (as all Varietie doth) please thee, since thou shalt see what the Ancients had, which are lost and unknowne of us; and what wee have which they never knew. Although I confesse, in this Booke I hae intermixed many other things for Varietie, and pleasures sake, which hereafter may be Methodically disposed; but as I find this accepted, so will I proceed.
1. In Farrag. Epistola.
2. The text has "as many more be- /
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