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methods, a recognition which was explicit in Luther and pervasively exemplified in Calvin. I do not doubt that Halewood knows this, because he knows a great deal, but he should have qualified this rather onesided argument to prevent misunderstandings on the part of less theologically versed readers. When Halewood writes that 'the connection between the human and the beautiful could scarcely be maintained under the stress of Reformation teaching' (p 19), he says something which many eminent spokesmen for the Reformed tradition would have denied: Sir Philip Sidney, himself regarded as the Reformation gentleman par excellence, would have rejected such a conception, as would also Edmund Spenser and John Milton, among others. Although readers who are not intimately familiar with Reformed doctrine and culture may be misled here, and scholars of those subjects disappointed, the strengths of Halewood's book far outweigh its weaknesses . The key observation comes when Halewood writes that 'salvation occurs through God's self-lowering rather than through man's self-raising ' (p 48), which is impeccably perceived and heuristically developed throughout this admirable book. (ROLAND MUSHAT FRYE) Alexander Brame. Poems, ed Roman R. Dubinski. University of Toronto Press. 2 vols. $75.00 This handsome edition makes available a poet of both intrinsic and historical interest: Professor Dubinski goes so far as to call Brome 'the quintessential cavalier,' while carefully noting that he was a city lawyer, not a courtier, and engaged in the Civil War only as a royalist pressman. The accuracy of Dubinski's text will have to be judged by other Brome speCialists, if they exist; certainly Dubinski has studied the welter of Brome manuscripts and editions, given a full apparatus, and added useful notes. While Brome's text is seldom hard to construe, we do need some historical elucidation, and it is also good to have the analogies Dubinski notes between poems by Brome and contemporary ones in the same conventions. Where I find myself wanting to raise questions is in the critical part of Dubinski's preface. Brome's great interest, he feels, is in showing how the 'metaphysical' poetic had been replaced by a 'neoclassical ' one - one in which 'wit,' reduced to the limited sense of fancy, was depreciated in favour of 'judgment.' This is a familiar view, and of course there is truth in it; but if we are trying to place Brome historically, perhaps it needs some modification. First a minor cavil: Dubinski might have shown how Brome has an early manner as well as a later one. The arrangement of the present edition, that of the first edition of 1661, is obviously right, having as it would seem Brome's own authority, but while it conveniently groups 414 LETTERS IN CANADA 1982 poems according to genre it obscures their sequence of composition (not that this can be determined beyond a point). Yet poems we know to be early, and others like them that must be early for that reason, are noticeably different from Brame's later work. The early verses on Henrietta Maria's flight to France in 1642 give us a fictitious pageant: moved by the royal presence the elements perform the wonderful and paradoxical, something Brame can express only with grand terms like 'transelement.' The panegyric on the Restoration has much less of this kind of thing: we are made to feel rather that Brome is setting out the facts, and in plain language. But Dubinski does give us an accurate idea of Brame's manner in general: the plainness already apparent in the early political satires becomes his most distinctive quality, especially when he is setting the ladies straight. A further question is whether the seventeenth century as a whole changed in the way Brame did; if so, was the change as simple as Dubinski indicates? If we take everything grave and cautious in the Elizabethans and jacobeans, and contrast it with everything free-wheeling about the Restoration - if, for instance, we contrast jonson's religion of decorum with Dryden's early and late partiality to boldness, even negligence - we hardly have a sense of something sobering down. If we leave jonson aside and turn to a supposed 'metaphysical' vogue we have another problem...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 413-416
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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