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an English author, who lived in the reigns of James I. and Charles

, an English author, who lived in the reigns of James I. and Charles I. but whose private history is involved in much obscurity, was son of Robert Markham, esq. of Gotham, in the county of Nottingham. He bore a captain’s commission under Charles I. in the civil wars, and was accounted a good soldier, as well as a good scholar. One piece of dramatic poetry which he has published will shew, says Langbaine, that he sacrificed to Apollo and the muses, as well as to Mars and Pallas. This play is extant under under the title of “Herod and Antipater,” a tragedy, printed in 1622. Markham published a great many volumes upon husbandry and horsemanship: one upon the latter, printed in quarto, without date, he dedicated to prince Henry, eldest son to James I. In husbandry he published “Liebault’s La Maison rustique, or the country -farm,” in 1616. This treatise, which was at first translated by Mr. Richard Surfleit, a physician, Markham enlarged, with several additions from the French books of Serris and Vinet, the Spanish of Albiterio, and the Italian of Grilli. He published other books of husbandry, particularly “The English Husbandman, in two parts,” Lond. 1613 1635, with the “Pleasures of Princes in the Art of Angling.” Granger mentions “The whole Art of Angling,1656, 4to, in which he says Markham very gravely tells us that an angler should “be a general scholar, and seen in all the liberal sciences; as a grammarian, to know how to write or discourse of his art in true and fitting terms. He should have sweetness in speech to entice others to delight in an exercise so much laudable. He should have strength of argument to defend and maintai n his profession against envy and slander,” &c. Markham also wrote a tract entitled “Hunger’s prevention, or the whole Art of Fowling,1621, 8vo. In military discipline he published “The Soldier’s Accidence and Grammar,” in 1635. But he appears to have been earliest distinguished by his talents for poetry. In 1597 he published “Devereux Vertues tears for the loss of the most Christian king Henry, third of that name king of France, and the untimely death of the most noble and heroical Walter Devereux, who was slain before Roan, in Fraunce,” a translation from the French, 4to. He was the author also of “England’s Arcadia, alluding his beginning from sir Philip Sydney’s ending,1607, 4to. The extracts from Markham in “England’s Parnassus,” are more numerous than from any other minor poet. The most remarkable of his poetical attempts appears to have been entitled “The Poem of Poems, or Sion’s Muse, contaynyng the diuine Song of king Salomon, deuided into eight eclogues,” J 596, 16mo. This is dedicated to “the sacred virgin, divine mistress Elizabeth Sydney, sole daughter of the everadmired sir Philip Sydney.” Bishop Hall, who was justly dissatisfied with much of the spiritual poetry with which his age was overwhelmed, alludes to this piece in his “Satires” (B. I. Sat. VIII.); and says that in Markham’s verses Solomon assumes the character of a modern sonneteer, and celebrates the sacred spouse of Christ with the levities and in the language of a lover singing the praises of his mistress. For this censure, Marston in his “Certayne Satires” (Sat. IV.) endeavours to retort upon Hall.