To The True Patronesse Of All Poetrie,
IT is a statute in deepe wisdomes lore,
by Francis Beaumont
That for his lines none should a patro[n] chuse
By wealth or pouerty, by lesse or more,
But who the same is able to peruse;
Nor ought a man his labours dedicate,
Without a true and sensible desert,
To any power of such a mighty state,
And such a wise Defendresse as thou art.
Thou great and powerfull Muse, then pardon mee,
That I presume the Mayden-cheeke to stayne,
In dedicating such a work to thee,
Sprung from the issue of an idle brayne.
I vse thee as a woman ought to be:
I consecrate my idle howres to thee.