The compleat gentleman fashioning him absolute in the most necessary & commendable qualities concerning minde or bodie that may be required in a noble gentleman. By Henry Peacham, Mr. of Arts sometime of Trinity Coll: in Cambridge.
Peacham, Henry, 1576?-1643?, Delaram, Francis, 1589 or 90-1627, engraver.
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TO THE TRVLY NO∣BLE AND MOST HOPE∣FVLL MR. WILLIAM HOVVARD, third and youngest Sonne to the Right Ho∣norable THOMAS Earle of Arundell and Surrey, Earle Marshall of England, &c.

WHat Motiue (Noble Sir) may induce others in their Dedi∣cations, I know not: sure I am none other hath incited me, then the regard of your owne worth, and that natiue inge∣nuitie and goodnesse of Spirit, I haue euer perceiued in you, since it was my good hap to enioy your acquaintance, and to spend some houres with you at your Booke in Norwich; where at this present you haue your education vnder the Reuerend, Religious, and my Honorable good Lord, the now Lord Bishop of Norwich. And indeed, to whom rather of right should appertaine these my Instructions, in regard of their subiect, which is the fashioning of Page  [unnumbered] Nobilitie after the best Presidents, then to your selfe euery way so Nobly descended. Beside, it is affirmed, that there are certaine sparkes and se∣cret seeds of vertue innate in Princes, and the Children of Noble personages; which (if che∣rished, and carefully attended in the blossome) will yeild the fruit of Industry and glorious Acti∣on, not onely aboue the strength of the vulgar, but euen in the scient, and before the time Nature hath appointed.* So Achilles, while hee was yet very young, vndertooke to shoote the fiercest Li∣ons and Boares, and was so nimble on foote, that he was able to take a wilde Beast without either oyle or Dogge.*Alexander also, when an E∣gyptian Priest saluted him, being very young, by the names of Son and Child, replyed; But you shall finde me a Man before the walls of Athens. But to omit Heathenish examples,*Salomon wee reade, when he was but euen a child, begged wis∣dome of God, and grace to gouerne well: and Ignatius,* that holy Martyr writeth, Salomon was scarce 12. years of age, when he decided that hard controuersie betweene the two Harlots: so Iosias was but eight years old, when he walked religi∣ously before God. And mee thinkes (Sir) as in that Cornelian Stemme (whereof Scipio was said to be the top, and In quo (vt plura genera in vnam arborem) videtur infita multorum illuminata sapi∣entia:*) already you grow apace, reflecting as from a faire Glasse, that Princely Moderation and Ho∣nesty of heart, of the good Duke your great Grand-father, the Honourably disposed mind of Page  [unnumbered] my Lord, your Noble Father, together with his loue and admiration, of whatsoeuer is honest or excellent: so that verily you need no other pat∣terne to the absolute shaping of your selfe, then the Images of your fore-fathers.* But as Aristotle saith of the Vine, by how much it is laden with Clusters, by so much it hath need of props: so say I of Greatnesse and Nobilitie, euer fruitfull, and apt to abundance, it hath hourely need of support and helpe, by all timely aduice and instru∣ction, to guide and vphold it from lying along.

Wherefore, since the Fountaine of all Coun∣sell and Instruction, next to the feare of God, is the knowledge of good learning, whereby our affections are perswaded, and our ill manners mol∣lified, I heere present you with the first and plai∣nest Directions (though but as so many keies to leade you into far fairer roomes) and the readiest Method I know for your studies in general, and to the attaining of the most commendable qualities that are requisite in euery Noble or Gentle-man. Nothing doubting, but that after you haue here∣in seene the worth and excellence of Learning, how much it addeth to Nobilitie; what errors are hourely comitted through Ignorance; how sweet a thing it is to conuerse with the wisest of all Ages by Historie; to haue in-sight into the most pleasing and admirable Sciences of the Mathema∣tiques, Poetrie, Picture, Heraldrie, &c. (where∣of I heere intreat, together with the most com∣mendable exercise of the body, with other gene∣rall directions for Carriage, Trauaile, &c.) you Page  [unnumbered] will entertaine this Discourse, as Vlysses did Mi∣nerua at his elbow your guide to knowledge; the ground, not onely of the sweetest, but the hap∣piest life. And though I am assured there are num∣bers, who (notwithstanding all the Bookes and Rules in the world) had rather then behold the face of heauen, burie themselues in earthly sloath, and basest idlenesse; yet Mr. William Howard at the least, let vs recouer you from the tyrannie of these ignorant times, and from the common Edu∣cation; which is, to weare the best cloathes, eate, sleepe, drinke much, and to know nothing. I take leaue, from my house at Hogsdn by London, May 30.

Who is, and shall be euer yours, HENRY PEACHAM.