Sedley’s Faithless Phillis

After yesterday’s nod towards the Yeats Day celebrations I have moved in a rather frivolous direction and have a short poem from a Restoration poet, Sir Charles Sedley (1639-1701). This is one of the poems I mentioned as being in my little mini red book called Come Live with Me, along with Christopher Marlowe’s Passionate Shepherd.

text of poem by Charles Sedley

Faithless Phillis

One of the things I love about this book are the decorated front and end papers and this is a scan of the front of the book, showing a dedication to a previous owner. So, not only do I wonder who the faithless Phillis might have been; I also wonder who Gwen was, who once owned this book and then gave it away at some point.

Frontspiece illustration of a poet and lady

Poet and his Lady

You might also be interested in knowing a little more about Sir Charles who was one of Charles II’s ministers, ending up as the Speaker of the House of Commons.  He also got up to various activities of a roistering nature as I discovered courtesy of a lovely history blog Two Nerdy History Girls. Look away now if you’re easily shocked. I believe Samuel Pepys had something to say on the subject, so I must look that reference up. Pepys also lives on the Landing Book Shelves and is a very old resident on the TBR Pile. Tackling his diaries would be a Reading Challenge all by itself so I will probably save him for another year.

I’ll now go away and work on an idea for tomorrow’s choice of poem for #PoetryinJune. Any favourites so far? Let me know if you have one.