Chester, Sir Robert

(?1566-?1640)
   Not much is known about this poet. His wife was Anne Capell, daughter of Sir Henry Capell of Essex; they had one child, Sir Edward, and he was knighted in 1603. His long poem, Love's Marty: or, Rosalin's Complaint, allegorically shadowing the truth of Love in the constant Fate of the Phenix and Turtle, was published in 1601. The Phoenix and the Turtle-an allegorical poem on the mystical nature of love by William Shakespeare, was appended to Chester's Love's Martyr. Two other poems are credited to him: "The Authour's request to the Phenix," "To the Kind Reader" (which, in 1611, was reissued as The Anuals of Great Brittaine; parts of the poem are thought to relate to Queen Elizabeth and the Earl of Essex). Some of his poems (many of them short): "A poore sheapheards profecye," "And if my loue shall be releeu'd by thee," "Diana in thy bosome plast her bower," "I haue no loue, but you my Doue," "Seeing that my hart made choise of thee," and "Though death from life my bodie part."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition, 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Elizabethan Lyrics. Norman Ault, ed. William Sloane Associates, 1949. English Poetry: Author Search. Chadwyck-Healey Ltd., 1995 (http://www.lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/epoetry/author. html). The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The complete Love's Martyr, is on http://phoenixandturtle.net/loves_martyr.htm.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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