Sir John Harington (1560-1612) is well known to students of Elizabethan and Jacobean history and literature as a courtier and wit, and as the author of an unusually diverse oeuvre, including a translation of Ariosto; letters; epigrams; and a satirical discourse on a primitive kind of water-closet of his own invention. The Sixth Book of Virgil's Aeneid shows him in more serious vein, and throws new light on his abilities in translation, criticism,
theological discussion, and social comment. The original manuscript was prepared for the use of Prince Henry in 1604. Long thought to be lost, it is here published for the first time, and forms an important and interesting addition to the canon of Harington's published writings. The manuscript consists of 162 neatly
written pages, containing an epistle to King James I, parallel English and Latin texts (the latter added, after the first eight lines, by a scribe), marginal explanatory notes, and a `comment' in seven chapters. Dr Cauchi has prepared a critical old-spelling edition, with an introduction and commentary.
`Simon Cauchi has produced an elegant and helpful volume; transcription, Latin text, information on the manuscript, introduction and notes. The work is a curious one and well worth publishing.
Times Literary Supplement
`Now we have Cauchi's meticulous, intelligently annotated edition of an effort that had been thought largely lost.
Translation and Literature, 1 (1992)
`an unexpectedly engrossing text which has never been printed before, and forms a useful addition to our knowledge of Renaissance classicism ... Dr Cauchi's own introduction and notes are helpful at every turn, and the book is beautifully produced.
English Studies, Volume 73, Number 6, December 1992
`a rewarding work to which Simon Cauchi has responded splendidly ... It is ... prefaced by a scholarly introductory section, with flashes of humour which are the most fitting epitaphs to the author.
Conal Condren, University of New South Wales, Paragon, Vol. 9, No. 2, December 1991
`superbly edited ... The lengthy introduction is a model of good sense, good English, learning, and precision ... The editor seems totally sound on his primary material, and his editorial procedures also appear beyond reproach. His notes, too, strike one as massively learned and accurate. Such respect for matters of fact and history is refreshingly unfashionable and totally praiseworthy.
Joost Daalder, Flinders University of South Australia, Review of English Studies, Vol. 44, No. 175, Aug '93
`outstanding scholar ... The punctiliousness of Cauchi's scholarship is evident ... Such respect for matters of fact and history is refreshingly unfashionable and totally praiseworthy. However, one hopes that Cauchi's formidable skills will soon be used in the service of enterprises more substantially appealing to most of us. Cauchi's own comments on Harington show that he can distinguish between texts which are of literary interest and those which are
Joost Daalder, Flinders University of South Australia, Review of English Studies, XLIV (175) August 1993
Abbreviations; Introduction; Text: The Epistle; The Translation; The Comment; Of enchauntments, and prophecies; Of funerals; Of hel and the state of the damned; Of Paradise and the state of the godly; Of the sowl of man and the original thearof; Of the Citty and Empyre of Room; Of reeding poetry; Appendix: The Latin Text of Aeneid VI; Notes; Bibliography; Index