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Oxford was accompanied on his journey to Italy, including Venice, by the Englishman Nathaniel Baxter, who recalled the event in a publication he entitled Sidneys Ourania, printed in 1606 (STC 1598), two years after Oxford's death. Although the publication is dedicated to Philip Sidney's sister Mary, countess of Pembroke, a poem within the volume (on sig. A3v) is dedicated to Oxford's daughter Susan Vere, and assigns her conception to Oxford's miraculous rescue from "infamie" (here, Oxford is the "Prince" and also the "Albanian dignitie" - or British nobleman). The first three stanzas, which are an acrostic on the de Vere motto ("mot" or posy), are as follows:

To the Right Noble, and Honorable Lady Susan Vera Mongomriana.

V    Aliant whilome the Prince that bare this Mot,
E    Ngraued round about his golden Ring:
R    Oaming in VENICE ere thou wast begot,
A    Mong the Gallants of th'Italian spring.

N    Euer omitting what might pastime bring,
I    Talian sports, and Syrens Melodie:
H    Opping Helena with her warbling sting,
I    Nfested th'Albanian dignitie,
L    Ike as they poysoned all Italie.

V    Igilant then th'eternall majestie
E    Nthraled soules to free from infamie:
R    Emembring thy sacred virginitie,
I    Nduced vs to make speedie repaire,
V    Nto thy mother euerlasting faire,
S    O did this Prince begette thee debonaire.

By way of explanation it should be noted that "Hopping Helena" is a circumlocution for "prostitute" - perhaps based on the fact that many Venetian courtesans were in fact named "Helena." Similarly, a Cambridge prostitute of the time (1620) was nicknamed "Jumping Judy."

The "sting" with which this generic prostitute infected the Albanian (Baxter's poetic term for "British") dignity or nobility, was presumably some kind of venereal disease.

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