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The English Rogue, Part 4 by Richard Head

 


THE PREFACE.

THE ENGLISH ROGUE: Continued in the Life of Meriton Latroon, AND OTHER EXTRAVAGANTS. PART IV.



THE English Rogue:
Continued in the Life of MERITON LATROON, AND OTHER EXTRAVAGANTS. Comprehending the most Eminent CHEATS OF BOTH SEXES.
The Fourth Part.

THE PREFACE.

Gentlemen,

We see there is a necessity for our travailing in the common road, or High-way of Prefacing; as if the Reader could neither receive nor digest the Pabulum mentis, or fatten by the mental nourishment, without a preparatory. And yet we think it savors neither of civility, nor good manners to fall on without saying something of a grace; but we do not love that it should be so tedious, as to take away your stomack from the meat, and therefore that we may not be condemned for that prolixity we mislike in others, we shall briefly tell you how little we value the favour of such Readers, who take a pride to blast the wits of others, imagining thereby to augment the reputation of their own: What unexpected success we have obtained in the publication of the former parts, will keep us from despairing, that in this we shall be less fortunate than in the other. But although our Books have been generally received with great applause, and read with much delight and satisfaction, as home and abroad, (having travailed many thousand miles) yet we do not imagine them to be without their Errata's, for which they have suffer'd very harsh correction; this is a younger brother to the former, lawfully begotten, and if you will compare their faces, you will find they resemble one another very much: Or else match this pattern with the former cloth, you will find it of the same colour, wool, and spinning, only it having passed the curious hands of of an excellent Artist, he hath by shearing and dressing it made it somewhat thinner, and withall finer, than was intended; however we hope it will prove a good lasting piece, and serviceable. You cannot imagin the charge and trouble we have been at, in raising this building, which we must acknowledg was erected upon an old foundation. From the actions of others we gather'd matter, which matereals we methodized, and so formed this structure. We challenge nothing but the order; it may be called ours, as the Bucentauro may be now called the same it was some hundred of years since, when the Pope therein first married the Duke of Venice to the Seas, having been from that time so often mended and repaired, as that it is thought, there is not left a chip of her primitive building. So what remarkable stories, and strange relations we have taken up on trust, by hear-say, or otherwise, we have so altered by augmentation, or deminution, (as occasion served) that this may be more properly called a new composition, rather than an old collection, of what witty Extravagancies are therein contained. As to the verity of those ingenious exploits, subtle contrivances, crafty projects, horrid villanies, &c. We have little to say, but though we shall not assert the truth of them all, yet there are none, which carry not circumstances enough to make apparent their probability. And you may confidently believe, that most of them have been lately acted though not by one two, three, a score, nay many more. To conclude, (least we tire your patience with tedious preambles) it is our desire that you will have a charitable opinion of us, and censure not our writings according to their desert; we are ready to condemn them, before you examine their faults, what would ye more? We are not insensible, that ours are many, and are forc't to bear the burden of the Printers too; we know the stile is mean and vulgar, so are the Interlocutors, and therefore most requisite and allowable; the subject is evil, (you say) and may vitiate the Reader; the Bee gathers honey from the worst of weeds; and the Toad poison from the best of Herbs. An ignorant young Plowman learn'd from a Sermon how to steal an Ox, by the Parsons introducing a Simile; even as the stubborn Horn is made soft, pliable, and to be shaped as you please, by laying a hot loaf thereon; so is, &c. which he trying so effectually chang'd the form of the Ox-head, that the right Owner knew not his own Beast. There is no matter so good, but may be perverted, which is worst of all, so, Corruptio optimi est pessima; and there is no subject so bad, out of which some good may not be collected; this drolling discourse, will, I question not, is the reading, prove not only facetious, but profitable, which if you find, we have obtain'd our desired end,

(Omne tulit punctum qui miscuit utile dulci.) and subscribe our selves,

Your Friends and Servants,
Richard Head. Fra. Kirkman.

THE ENGLISH ROGUE:
Continued in the Life of Meriton Latroon, AND OTHER EXTRAVAGANTS.
PART IV.

CHAP. I.

Sayling from St. Helena, &c. Landing at Messina, the Captain, Latroon, &c. sell Ship and Goods; the Seamen falling out and killing one an other, they leave them and go for Palerno; Thence they travel into the Countrey, and describe it with its Rarities and Wonders. A comical Adventure in an house supposedly haunted, as they travelled through Gergento with their Mulletteer.

Whilst we anchored at the Island of St. Helena there hapned a sad Accident, whilst we were recreating and refreshing our selves in the Island, one of our men (that brought us ashore in the Skiff) being an excellent Swimmer, stript himself, and over the side of the Boat he went, he had not been long in the water before such as stood on the shore to see him swim, perceived a Shark to make towards him; who cryed out, A Shark, a Shark, hasten to the Boat; which he did with incredible speed, and had laid his hands on her side as the Shark snapt at his Leg, and having it in his mouth turned on his back, and twisted it off from his knee. The fellow protested to me that when this was done he he felt no pain any where but under his Arm-pits; the fellow was drest and perfectly cur'd, afterwards this very Shark was taken by one of our men, fishing for him with a great piece of Raw-beef, and when his belly was ripp'd open the Leg was found whole therein. From St. Heléna, having taken in fresh water, and gotten in some other refreshment that the Island afforded, we set sail with a fresh breeze and good weather.

Our Captain getting himself into the great Cabbin, gave the word for me, I coming to him, now, said he, let you and I have a little private discourse together, to the intent that we may perfect with safety what we have enterpriz'd with hazard. You know my full intent as to the disposing of the Ship and Goods to my own use and benefit, excepting onely what is yours, and the rest of our Comrades: What your old friend in Breeches hath with great hazard ventur'd for, let her enjoy it freely since she hath deserved it, and that you may see the frankness of my Spirit, go, get our friends together that I may inform them, that though I play the Rogue with others, yet I will be just to them; your New-gate Birds will have such as wrong their own fraternity to be stigmatiz'd, and branded with a name of Infamy indelable.

I quickly got them together, and having provided for us what Meat and Liquors (the best) he had aboard, he then told us that we were all heartily welcome, and that he was now, more than ever our friend, and having taken a good lusty draught of what he had before him, seeing it go round; friends and fellow Travellers, said he, from my Childhood I have had wonderful and various vicissitudes of Fortune, in so much that though the relation of several of your lives which I have had, seems very strange and eminently remarkable to me, yet when you shall hear me giving you an account of the transactions of my life, which I shall trouble you with very speedily, you will look upon them as incredible as Mounsieur St. Serfs Voyage into the Moon, or the travels of Sir John Mandevile; In all the various windings and turnings of my life, I never was settled long in one Condition. It is true, from very low and mean beginnings I have got to the heighth of considerable employments; from a Parish-child, I was for my Rogueries condemned to be transported, by my subtle deportment and insinuating behaviour I changed my Doom, and was made Cabbin-boy, from thence I did gradually rise passing through every Office that doth belong to a Ship till I was constituted a Captain, several Voyages I have made to most parts of the known World, and have gotten great sums of mony, but no sooner did I call it my own, but it vanished by shipwrack, or I was taken Prisoner and lost it that way. I am now in my declension, and having a fairer opportunity than ever I yet had, or ever thought to have to enrich my self and sit down quietly in some remote Corner of the World, I am resolved to lay hold on it. And now coming nere the Coast of Europe I shall tell you my resolution, that I intend to make my self a voluntary Exile to my own Countrey. In order thereunto I shall shape my course for the Straights, which will harbor my design in disposing of my Goods, neither will it be prejudidial to you to accompany me thither, since from thence you may dispose your selves to the best and flourishing Countries of the World

Here he paused a while to hear our opinion, which we acquainted him with unanimously, that we were very joyful to continue longer in his company, and that we would see him anchored in his designed Port, or run what ever fortune should befal him; having assured him this, he continued his discourse: Since I know your minds, and am, and shall be obliged to you for your societies, I shall endeavor to requite your kindnesses: And that my words may not seem airy pretences without performances, I shall make this Proposition which if granted, you shall know how I have studied a way to gratifie you. It is this, Master Latroon, the Scrivener there, and Drugster, shall give each of them one hundred pounds a piece to Mistress Dorothy, and that I may not exempt my self from helping her forward into the World, I will give the like sum with this Box of rough Diamonds, which I know is worth as much more; we all consented: next, said he, every man according to his stock of money expended in the procuration of what Commodities we have aboard upon the Sale thereof shall receive it again, and his profit thereof according to proportion, with an equal dividend of what Goods was taken upon credit. You shall see me so just to you, that I will somewhat injure my self by taking no fraught from you, but instead thereof the principal Officers shall share with us, and fthe private Seamen shall have double pay out of the same Goods which we took upon trust.

Upon this we all agreed, and the noise of this Agreement running through the ship, the nicest of them all from the highest to the lowest liked so well the Knavish-generosity of our Captain, that they all caper'd for Joy, and having brought out what Brandy they had on the Decks, drinking the Captains Health, protesting to serve him with their lives, they received Commands to stand away for Scicilia , where in a little time we safely came to an Anchor.

Arriving at Scicilia an Island of the Mediterranean-Sea, seated betwixt Italy and Africk, we made choice of Messina, a City as it is the most illustrious one, that all-fruitful and ever-flourishing Island, so it is for all manner of forreign Commerce as much crowded with the great conflux of strangers as most-places in Europe; here we landed, and soon found it the onely place of the world that would best fit our purpose: The Joy that possess'd such especially that had never been there before, undoubtedly would have over-swell'd its Banks and become boundless, had nor the prudent fore-sight of some of us hindred its increase by informing there were some black threatning Clouds of danger still hung over our heads, and that we could not be safe till we had settled our affairs by the sale of our Ship and Goods, then if they would ride post to their pleasures none should stop them in their Carreer; this something qualified their exultation and rejoycing, and every one officiated in his proper function.

Our Commodities were not onely excellently good in their kind, but extraordinary rich and valuable, the knowledge whereof soon reaching the ears of the Inhabitants and Merchants of Messina, they came in Droves to us, because it was troublesome to deal with so many, we resov'd to make a quick market of the Continent and things contained, Ship and Cargo altogether. This Proposition better pleas'd those wealthy Citizens, than if we had plaid the Hucksters with our commodities, wherefore two of the most wealthy and greatest account amongst them bought all, paying us ready money without a penny Credit. After that every man had received his share or dividend proportionably, and according to a general Agreement; we divided our selves into parties as Interest or Inclination lead us. The Captain, Scrivener, Drugster, Jane, Doll, and my self were of one company, the Sea-men with the Under-officers of the ship divided themselves into several Gangs or Squadrons, who having more money now than their Great-grand-fathers ever told in their lives, fell into such an excess of Debauchery, that the Citizens thought that Hell had plotted a Conspiracy to disturb their quiet, and these were the Emissaries who should put it in execution.

Getting drunk they frequently quarrell'd about their Scicilian -wenches, and indeed to give them their due they seem by the out-side to be worth the going to Logger-heads for, sometimes they fell together by the ears in that one that deserved not to have a quarter so much as himself, yet had full as much; and now having store of money they regarded their gentility, in that manner that they stood upon every punctilio to defend it from the calumnies and aspersions of such who had but a little before been bail fellow, well met: so that now the least seeming affront would not go down with them unless it were steept in the blood that dropt from the Nose of the Affronter: when there was a cessation of Arms among themselves, then would they ramble about the streets like mad men, abusing whom ever they met, and were well chasten'd for their pains, several of them coming short home.

The City began now to mutter, and verily believed them to be a parcel of Rogues that had sold what was none of their own, and probably to the ruine of many an honest man; and was therefore resolved to endure this outrage no longer.

We hearing this, thought our selves very unsafe whilst in Messina , and therefore concluded to remove move thence to Palermo, a City in the same Island of Scicilia. By enquiry I found the most convenient and customary way of travelling thither was by Mules, which are plentiful for Hire; I bargained for as many as would conveniently carry our company which were six, and our money; and so with as much privacy as we could we departed Messina; these Mules travelled very commodiously with us, and carried us over the mountains both with speed and security; and although it was an hundred and eighty miles from the City we left behind us, to Palermo, yet we got thither in less than four days.

In this famous City of Palermo (the fairest of all others of Scicily, and at present the Metropolis and Regal Seat) we stayed some considerable time and laying aside for a while our shifting and cheating, &c. having enough, that we might imploy our wits and inventions in nothing but contriving variety of Recreations, and Pleasures, which were the novel, we cared not at what excessive rate we purchas'd them.

The Captain and my self being more than half glutted with City-delights, resolved for some few days to travel into the Countrey, and since it was so famously noted we would not leave it till we had seen those Excellencies and Rarities wherewith it enjoys with Fames Trumpet through the whole Universe. In order thereunto, taking our leave of our friends, and promising to return within five or six days, we proceeded in our Progress. In our short Itinerary we saw many brave Towns, and wonderful Places, which told, would exceed belief, as Mount Ætna, and Mongibello, Strombellow, &c. which though it belcheth inexpressible and continual fire out of its bowels, yet hath its head notwithstanding (on that part where the fire issues) covered with deep Snow till the midst of Summer In Meunenino is the Lake Nastia, where in three Eddies you may perfectly perceive boyling water, which gurgles up with an intollerable stink, and sometimes you may see it spew up flames of fire. It hath likewise in sundry other places divers other fountains of admirable nature and quality.

In some Caves and Grots we were shown by the people, we saw the vastly big and immense bodies of men in former time, which were accounted Monsters of men or Gyants, and to verifie the matter, they believe themselves that a long time since, the Cyclops inhabited their Island. We found the People generally accute, and quick witted, very facetious, and of a jolly temper, which suited well with the Nature of the Countrey. For to be brief, this Island is not inferior to any other, either for its farness or abundance; exceeding Italy in the excellency of their Grain, Saffron, Honey, Beasts-skins, and other things either for profit or pleasure, in so much that as it was call'd by Tully the Granery of the world, so Homer call'd it the Island of the Sun, and would have us believe all things grew there spontaniously of their own accord; the salubrity of the air is very excellent, as well as the abundance of terrene sustenance, and pn)nty of all things necessary for mans use, and indeed may be accounted the best, which it either affords naturally, or produceth by man's ingenuity.

Wild-oats grow there without sowing, and the Vines without planting; their Wines are most delicate, their fruit of all sorts grow with great plenty and goodness; to be short, there is nothing wanting which may not onely delight the eye, but please the most critical Palat with whatever may be accounted gustful.

Being almost tired with variety of Objects abroad, and being not willing to trust our Comrads at home too much, fearing the temptation of a too long absence, we concluded to return, which I perceived was no small trouble to our Mulletteer, whom we hired to shew us the Countrey, and the rather, because he could speak indifferently good English, intelligible at least, for this Rogue had not been accustomed to fare as we made him do, and therefore he had been well content to have travelled through the whole Universe at that Rate. Being homewards bound and the day being far spent, we came to a place called Gergento, near which is the Territory of Matharuca, a small Town in which there were but few houses; however we rode up to the best of them, and commanded our Guide to ask whither we might have entertainment there that night: The Master of the house took it as a great affront that his house should be accounted an Inn, and answered him snappishly that he might look his masters lodging where it was made a profession to accomodate Passengers on the road: he asked him where such accomodation might be had? to which the other replyed, he knew none nearer than three Leagues.

Our Guide told us what he said, which nettl'd me to some purpose, in somuch that I could not but express some passion, and a great deal of trouble that we should be exposed to the travelling so far, and so late; which the Gentleman taking notice of, seeing by my Garb I must be a Gentleman, though a stranger, and therefore could not be ignorant of the Latine tongue so ornamental and universally useful, addrest himself very civilly to me and desired me (in Latine) that I would take no exception at what ever had pass'd, that though his house was no Inn, yet he should be very glad to accommodate any Gentleman with a Lodging, especially in such an extremity, had he not been that very day deprived of the means by the arrival of some friends of his from Syracusa, which had filled his house excepting onely one Room, which if I would not think with my friend too mean and unworthy for our reception, he should gladly spare it, and with it, what the house afforded. I rendered him in the behalf of my self and the Captain a thousand thanks, in the same tongue, though not in so quaint a dialect, being some what deficient in the propriety and Idiome of that noble Language, assuring him we should nor be so forgetful as to prove ingrateful for this favor he was pleased to confer upon us; upon this we dismounted, and giving our Mules to our Guide we were conducted into a very handsom Room by this Seignior de Domo, and caressed by him and his newly arrived friends as if we had been of their antient acquaintance. I could hardly forbear laughing outright to see what a confusion the Captain was in, when they spake to him, for they spake to him in their own tongue, which is a rough Italian without any sweetness, which they perceiving he understood not, they spake Latine, and then Spanish, of all which he understood not so much as to make sense, and therefore answered them in French which none of them understood, so that when he saw the distorting of his eyes and mouth, which was shaped in a hundred forms (partly for confusion, and partly for vexation) would not interpret his meaning; he applied himself to his Fingers, telling his story after such an antick manner, that as I laught, the Company had much ado to forbear bearing me company: Seeing him grow almost angry, I thought it high time to make an Apology for him, pretending that what I said, was what he would have said, but that his language was non-intelligent in the Company.

Supper, by that time we had chatted a little longer (modo Italiano) was served to the Table, and with some Ceremony seated our selves (without his Wife or Daughters, although he had both, and as I afterwards found, had such angelical countenances, that in stead of obscuring or obsconding so great a lustre, he might have gloried in communicating their external perfections to our sight, which were illustrated by the adjuncts of so many transcendent concurrencies of beautiful Idæas.

We did not German like after this Evenings Repast, presently fall to drinking as if we had lately swallowed the Offals of half a dozen slaughter-houses, and now were pouring down liquor in abundance to sweeten the Funnel or cleanse the Common-shore that the filth had contaminated within us; but in stead thereof we entred into very pleasant and agreable discourse, every one having the liberty of inlarging it as he thought fit without interruption.

Among a great variety of several Subjects, that of Phantasms and Aparitions fell in our way, one affirming he believ'd that though Spirits might appear formerly, yet it would not enter into his belief that now there was any such thing: Nay, said another, methinks you may be easily convinc'd of the contrary by those Legions of stories to this purpose, so that I should think there should be some fire whence all this smoak comes. Said the Master of the house, if you will not believe what is contain'd in so many Volumes, written by the Pens of so many learned and pious Divines, believe yet the reports of such as now are living, have seen Phantasms in several shapes, and have heard their terrifying noise, amongst whom I am one, and shall tell you to my great trouble that this very house of mine is to this day, from a considerable time since, afflicted with horrible Apparitions. Gentlemen, said he, fear not, he confines himself to one Room onely, and so, that he that lyeth in the next shall be so far from being disturbed, that he shall neither see nor hear any thing: and this is the Room, speaking to us, which this disturbed Fiend makes his Rendezvouz, and for no other reason I refused you Lodging, all my other Rooms being prepossess'd by those Gentlemen my Amigo's. This shall not daunt us, said I, but we will lie there this night that we may resolve to morrow what is now much doubted.

Bidding them good night, several offer'd themselves to accompany us till morn, but we refus'd it, judging their proffer a Complement by the pallid hue of their countenances. It was not long after our departure e're every one in the whole house betook themselves to their respective Chambers there to take their rest. My stout Captain (as I have sufficiently made appear) had no mind to take any, either for fear he should be caught napping by the Fiend, or else seeing him by flight escape him; I was partly of his mind too, rather desiring to contend with a thousand men than one Devil: The Captain and my self sate up in our Room till we judg'd it to be about midnight, and then seeing nothing (our eyes being almost shut by sitting up so long) we went to bed, and quickly fell asleep.

Our Mulletteer (either having not fill'd his belly at supper, or the remembrance of such excellent food which he had seen not letting him sleep till he had the other Bout with it, got up where he lay, & having observed where the Servants had placed on a shelf a large Dish of most incomparable food in a small Closet accompanied with several flasks of Florence-wine, he softly crope down the stairs, and got to this Room where the delight of his heart stood, but endeavoring to take down the Dish (which proving too heavy for him to manage) slipt out of his hands, and in its fall broke down a small shelf that had a great many Pewter-plates thereon, with other rattling stuff, all which together made a fearful noise, and so great that not a person in the house but what awak'd thereat, but such was their Courage that not one of them would stir, for they now really concluded the Spirit was come, as for my own part my Captain and self were so terrified and affrighted at this hideous noise that we now believed what reports we heard, and therefore were resolved to lye abed and sweat our selves to death rather than rise in that reaking condition and endanger our lives by catching cold, as the sweat dropt from us so we trembled that the bed shook, I am sure it was not with cold.

Whilst we were in this fearful Agony, the Rogue our Mulletteer , who listning what effects this cluttring Alarm would produce, and hearing no person stirring, concluded we were all dead asleep through the whole house, fell on manfully on the Cheer that was before him, getting our some Bottles of wine interloyning every bit with a large soop of the bottle; having now stuft his gut and fill'd his head with the fumes of wine, which he drank at no aim, he gets to the stairs, but the covetous and provident Rascal fearing he should be dry before morning, steps back and takes with him a flask of that wine he had already so freely drank of, and mounts the stairs softly with it in his hand, advancing to the top of the stairs, directly against which our Chamber-door stood, he stumbled up on the head of the stairs and indeavoring to save himself and the Bottle, he raised that hand aloft wherein it was, and falling, not being able to recover himself, dasht the bottle against our door with so much fury, that I do not think there was a piece of the glass in the flask the breadth of a shilling; the suddain surpize of this dismal and horrid thump made the Captain start with such a leap that he fell out of the bed, bearing the Bed-staff with him which so rattled in his fall, that this added very much to the horror that had invaded all our spirits. This noise in our Chamber confirmed the justness of their fears throughout the house, onely that of our Mulletteers was of a different nature; for he believing his Masters (as he call'd us) were getting up to find what was the matter, endeavored to get down the same way he got up, but groaping with his hands, met with the shattered flask on the top of the stairs which tumbling down to the bottom, the noise of the fractur'd glass perfectly resembled the gingling of Chains.

It is impossible for me to characterize their fear and fright, both which together had so totally routed what courage they had within them, that a corporal Pygmie with two files of revolted Cranes would at that time have taken them all Prisoners. Our Mulletteer fearing by this second alarm that he should now infallibly wake some of the house; who finding him in that condition would undoubtedly suspect him of some vilanous Design, therefore thought it his safest way to march down again, and lay his Carkass any where till it was day. Being half way down the stairs he could hear the voice of one crying, Il Diabolo, Il Diabolo, The Devil, the Devil, repeating it often, which so affrighted him that he thought to have returned back, but hearing the noise go from him, with the trampling of feet on the stones as in flight, he boldly pursued them, and cryed out to them, Questo Diabolo, what Divel, and where, I am none, but I will see what Devil you are. These were three Rogues which had a long time design'd to rob this house, not living far off it, who were well acquainted with this house, and had heard that it was visited by Phantasms; now as they were about to mount the stairs they met with the flask and broken glass in it, which frighted them away from that enterprize as effectually, as if the Devil with the gingling his Chains had come to meet them.

Our Mulletteer had not been so long a Rogue, condemned twice to be a Gally-slave, and very narrowly escap'd from being broken on the wheel, but that he quickly smelt the plot of these three Night-walkers, that they were onely bent on mischief, so taking advantage of the fright their guilty consciences put them in, he seized one of their Swords, which he exercised so well that they found they had another sort of spirit to deal with, than what they had fled from; it being a Devil incarnate: disarming the Thieves he raised the house, but with much ado, and had not done it, had he not shown their light in their Dark-lanthorn, none yet daring to be so bold as to come down in the dark to light a Candle; and now they began to creep out of their Ghambers with as much caution as if their way had been planted with Spanish needles. The Captain and my self waited when some others would stir first, and others expected the like from us, but at length casting off this enslaveing Cowardise, we went down the stairs, meeting with the Gentleman of the house accompanied with some of his last nights Guests, and so descended into the Court-yard together, where we found our Mulletteer with swords enough to furnish us all, his Captives lying at his feet not daring to stir; these, said he, are the Devils that haunt this house, but I will lay them for you; I will conjure them far enough off if you will but say the word; leading them into the Hall, we met with one of the Menials of the house whose haste had made him (after an hours consideration what was best to be done) to leave his Doublet behind him, yet forgot not his Sword.

Upon his first examination they confest what they intended to do, that there was four more in their company who had made their escape, but were ignorant of what they carried with them. Their own confession was a sufficient conviction, and so they were secured for the present, by tying Neck and Heels together.

The old Gentleman missing some of his friends, began to condemn them for their sluggishness, and supinity; come, said he, let us take them napping and in that posture upbraid them with their sloath We hereupon followed him up stairs, and entring their Chambers found nought but the furniture therein; without speaking one word, away he ran hastily to his Daughters Chamber, but found that as empty of Lodgers as the rest; and a Cabinet which he committed to her custody gone, which was worth a very valuable sum: At the sight hereof you might have blown the old Gentleman down, had not passion animated him and kept him up from sinking, which he discharg'd so violently on those that were left behind, which were the aged Kindred of the young man that had stoln this fair Maid away, that as much as ever they could do to bear the shock, but at last unanimously protesting they were innocent and ignorant of what was done, and promising they would use their utmost assistance and endeavour in the speedy restitution of his Daughter inviolated, he believ'd them guiltless, and begg'd them to be as good as their word.

And now consulting what he should do with his Prisoners, he was advised to send his man for an Officer, and secure them in a place not far distant erected for the confinement of Felons, Murderers, &c. as he was going out he had forgot his Doublet for haste, although he had his Sword on, wherefore he was call'd back, who being ordered to fetch it first, was prevented by the Maids coming full butt as he was going in the search thereof, he would have pass'd her, had I not perceived she had not a thing like a Wastecoat on, and therefore calling to him, said, Save your self the labor, here is what you are going to seek for; coming back he found his Doublet on the maids back, I imagining whence this Mistake did arise, to make our sorrowful Landlord a little sport, Sir, said I, Do you not see your maid hath got your mans Doublet already, and will no doubt, get his Breeches too if you do not prevent it; and then looking to his leggs and seeing what a traiterous mistake he had committed; Do you Sir, said I, buy your mans Stockings of two different colours, the one is blue, you see, the other grey; hereupon the maids Stockings were examined and found to be on the one side gray, the other side true-blue. This made the Company all laugh, neither could the old Gentleman forbear to smile, but having other business to think on, commanded them to restore to each other what they had borrowed, and he would take a time to examine the cause thereof, plain enough from what was seen to outward appearance.

These Rogues being committed to a publick Goal, he could not be quiet but he must go into his Daughters Chamber again, and upon a review thereof found a Letter directed to him, to this purpose:

Sir,

You may justly blame me for leaving your House without your consent or privity, but when you shall consider it was to avoid my eternal ruine, I hope the Sentence and Punishment which my disobedience doth deserve may prove more favourably merciful; hitherto you have been the sole Monarch of both mind and body, but play not the Tyrant by making my will your eternal Slave. Sir, Youth cannot look through those Spectacles which are useful to Age, nor can my inclination suit with your choice. I am now with him whom I love more than my self, nor can I esteem of that Gentleman of Catania whom you have selected for me, otherwise than the designed Murderer of my quiet. If you will sequester me from my Choice, I will seclude my self from all in a Monastery.

Having read these lines be raved out-right, sometimes condemning his rigid destiny, then exclaiming against the perfideousness of such who under the presence of friendship should be his undoers; But having tired himself with these fruitless complaints; he soberly ask'd our advice what he should do in this intricacy. We all advised him to follow them close at heels with all imaginable expedition, the Captain and my self promising him our company in the search; the next day mounted we rode the way wherein we guest the Gentlemen were gone with the young Gentlewoman, and having rid about ten miles from Gergento, the place from whence we came, we overtook two fellows who gave us cause to suspect them by their looks and habits, whilst I was acquainting the old Gentleman with my thoughts of them, they liking not our whispering betook themselves to their heels, which so increas'd our jealousie, that with Whip and Spur I soon overtook them, they resisted me for a while, but being overpowered by number yielded, searching them we found little money, the old Gentleman viewing them strictly, saw his own Coat upon one of their backs, and now concluding that these were the Rogues that had his Cabinet too, made a very strict research but to no purpose, they denying they had ever seen such a thing; but this served not their turns, and although we should hinder our intent in prosecuting a better discovery, yet we thought it very requisite to return and secure them with the rest of their fellows.

Coming home to his own house, he understood that the maid which particularly had waited a long time on his Daughter was suddenly gone, giving to none an account why or wherefore, but she was watch'd to go such a way: We were now all verily perswaded she was gone in quest of her Mistress, and that by tracking her, we should know where she was. The advice was well resented and speedily prosecuted, with such good success, as in less than a days time we found this Gillian and her companion footing it in great haste towards Catania, but we soon stopt their Journey, and discovered they had got what the poor Gentlewoman was accused of, she had given it to her friend to carry, but they were both like to bear the weight of the burthen. Examining her, she confest when she saw her Mistress was gone from her Father, and imagining she would be suspected to carry the Cabinet with her, (which would support her should her father frown for ever) she took that opportunity to enrich her self and that friend with her.

It was well this timely discovery was made for the five Rogues in Goal, it was as good as a Pardon after condemnation past, and now the old Gentleman seeing he had lost nothing, and that his Daughter with her disobedience was unjustly suspected a thief, he franckly protested before us all, that he would never put a restriction on his Daughters choice, but would freely give his consent to whom she thought so worthy as to be her Husband; This Protestation was immediately dispatch'd away by one that knew where our Lovers were, which happy News recall'd them home to their mutual satisfactions, and that the sufferings of her Maid and Friend might not eclipse the Joy and Gladness which attended their Hymeneal Rites, she begg'd her Father to forgive them all, who to gratifie their desires prosecuted none of those notorious Offenders; and so we shall leave this joyful Couple to spin out the Thread of their delight equally to that of their lives education.



Were ever men so sear'd, did ever fright
So seize weak Mortals in the dead of night?
Could a bare noise affright when nought appear'd?
And being afraid we knew not what we fear'd:
One hid his head all underneath the cloaths,
Lest that the Fiend should take him by the Nose:
Dumb was he too, for not a word did pass,
Lest that should tell him where about he was.
My Friend, the Captain, whom I will not wrong,
Did ne're before to me smell half so strong:
My panting heart (I almost stew'd to death)
Did beat so fast I could not draw my breath.
Now comes the worst, the noise approach'd more near,
All things combin'd for to encrease our fear.
Mounting the stairs Old Nick was drunk I think,
To break his Bottle, and to spill his drink:
The rattling Flask tumbling the stairs amain,
Did make us think the Devil shook his Chain.
But now th' appearance of the Morning-light,
Gave us new life, and put our fears to flight:
For now we found for all the peoples talk,
The Sp'rite was quiet, but the Thieves did walk.
This house these haunted which were worser Evils,
Than Fiends or Goblings, Damn'd-incarnate-Devils.
This Apparition plainly did discover,
That this same night the Maid lay with her Lover.
For the Stockings and the Doublet did disclose,
The match they made had thus mismatch'd their Cloths.

CHAP. II.

 

They are ship'd from Palermo to Naples, by the way Mistress Dorothy continues the Story of her Hostess who was hanged with her Husband for a Murder, the like was never heard of, her notorious confession at the Gallows of all her former Villanies: Latroons reflections on it. Mistress Dorothy and her Companion the Soldier, return for London.

[Our Mulletteer was very well rewarded ...]

Our Mulletteer was very well rewarded by our Entertainer, for the prevention of so much mischief, which had undoubtedly befel the Gentleman had not this fellow gone down at that unseasonable time to stuff his insatiate guts. And now taking our leaves (the Gentleman and his friends being very unwilling and sorrowful to part with our Companies) away we came shaping our course for Palermo, where being arriv'd and finding out those friends we had left too long, infinite was our satisfaction of meeting thus together again, but I thought my Jinny would have been transported with joy when she saw me, but recovering her self, she check'd me severely for staying so long from her beyond my promise. Our caresses were accompanied with what choice Viands and Wine the City could produce.

Having now pleased our sight with the curiosities of this place, we concluded upon a remove; and the next place pitcht on was Naples , and to the intent we might convey our moneys with greater safety thither, we took up Bills at Palermo for 5000 pounds, drawn upon a Merchant of Naples, payable ten days after sight. Having shipp'd our selves, with all conveniences, that our Voyage might not seem tedious, I desired Mistress Dorothy to divert the Company with the continuation of her Story. Ah Master Latroon! (said she) your Request renews my grief, by putting me in mind of the loss of my dear Companion Mall, however I shall endeavor to satisfie your desire, and having given a summary account to the Captain and the rest, which had not heard any thing of her former relation, of what was before discovered, she commenc'd her following discourse where she before left off, viz. her coming acquainted with the Soldier, and then she thus proceeded.

Being rid of my great belly, and having now gotten me a good round sum of money, I took my pleasure with as much freedom as my unlimitted desires could prompt me to, I was frequently at the old womans the Hostess, alias (my Procuress) where I found conveniences for all my secret, crafty, and pleasant Designs, and indeed to give her her due, she was no Back-friend to me, this was the place which I made my general Rendezvouz; here I did use to meet with my friends, and here I did converse with my Soldier of Fortune (as I have already told you) before I make any further progress give me leave to rehearse a Copy of Verses (which I got by heart) of his own composition, which he made upon the cunning trick he found in conjuring for food for his hungry Landlord and his own half famisht worship, which were these:



Hunger's a Whetstone that so sharpens Wit,
It cuts a way for some to feed by it.
For stomacks cramm'd, with Lethargies do blind
The active wit, and hebetates the mind.
The Grammar-schools when it hath spawn'd, the Fry
Either to Oxford or to Cambridge hye:
Where lest they should by too much food grow dull,
They scarce in seven years have their belly full.
That Barresters at Bar may louder bawl,
See the short Commons that are in the Hall.
'Tis plenty rusts our Valour, when we need,
Rather than starve we there can bravely bleed:
For food we fight, for which we Centry stand,
Want makes our wit as active as our hand.
Thus did my wit shew to my wants a way
To fill its belly, and increase my pay.
Hence I may say that I do live by wit,
For I've got money, and a Wench with it.
Grammercy Wit, help and assist me still,
He ne're can want that hath but Wit at will.

This Soldier was a Gentleman of a good house, though fallen to decay, whose education might have renderd him capable of considerable employments, had not his Heroick inclination to the Wars taken his thoughts clearly off from every thing else. I appointed a day for this man of war to attend me some few miles into the Countrey, having got leave of his Captain we went together, in the mean time my hostess was spinning of Hemp, and by return had finisht a Rope for herself and Husband: and thus it was,

A single Gentleman came as a Traveller to lodge in her Inn, having set up his Horse, and his Portmantua carried to his Chamber, he knocks for his Landlady, who coming up to him he acquaints her that he thought he should make a stay for two or three days, and therefore delivers into her hands a bag of one hundred pounds, desiring her to lay it up safe for him; she took the Bag and promised to keep it safe, and so she did from him: The Devil was one of her Privy Councel, who advised her to perswade her Husband to murder the Gentleman for his money, which thus they cunningly effected as they thought, but he that did set them at work will pay them their wages.

At midnight she and her Husband entred the Gentlemans Chamber through a private door which was hid behind the Hangings, a Sally-port for a thousand Roguerie they committed; mine Host with a pillow he had brought with him, and the assistance of his wife, smothered the Gentleman as he lay in his bed, having so done and putting on his Cloaths, they laid him down into the Stable, and there with a Rope ty'd to a beam they hung him up, and so went to bed; In the morning the Hostler going into the Stable found a Gentleman there hanging, upon sight whereof he ran into the house with an Out-cry, which quickly reacht the ears of the Neighborhood, so that in an instant the house was fill'd with people, every one giving his Verdict as his imagination prompted him; the general Vogue was that for some discontent he had thus desperately made away with himself. This old Beldame had the impudence to come into the Throng of the people, and there declare her Hypocritical sorrow for the death of her Guest, protesting that she would have given an hundred pounds with all her heart, that no such thing had hapned in her house. I took notice, said the Host, of his extraordinary melancholly last night, and reproving him for his unsociableness, he clapt his hand upon his brest and with erected eyes to heaven, he groaned so loud and long that I thought it would have bin his last. This prodigious lye would have wrought wonderfully upon the belief of the people, being a strong Circumstance of his despair or great discontent, had not this unlucky boy which I told you of before, cryed out, true good people, I heard him groan too, but it was when my Master and Mistress were hanging him up in the Stable, what they had been doing with him before I know not, but I saw them as I lay under the Manger bring in his body which seem'd to me as dead, and had they seen me I believe I had not been now living, my Mistress had the chiefest hand in this work as I judge, for she got up into the Rack and stradling the beam tyed the Rope, then did my Master raise the body in his Arms for her to put the noose about his neck; this is a truth said he, for which I will rather dye than deny.

His Master hearing this, and being conscious to himself that this was no ly which the boy said, betook himself to his heels, whilst his wife with a brazen countenance was justifying her innocence. The people seeing the flight of one, and the matchless impudence of the other, concluded them guilty; and laying hands on her first, and hold of him after, they secured them with the boy till the Constable was fetched, who came immediately and carried them before a Justice, where being examined they stood out stiffly in their own vindication, maugre the boys peremptory and undaunted accusation; In fine their guilty consciences would not let them longer persist in their justification, but confest the Fact that it was an hundred pounds which was committed to their charge by the Gentleman, that first tempted them to smother him, the Devil helping them to a way they thought indiscoverable. They were committed to Goal, where they lay till Assizes, at which time they were both sentenced to dye.

Glad was I that it should come into my head to ramble into the Country at that nick of time, for my extraordinary familiarity with them might have raised a suspition to the endangering of my person, besides the boy which accused them had a spight against me for causing him to be soundly bang'd, sometimes for some Roguish trick he served me; one he play'd a little before this Murder was committed, and being basted for it, I heard him say mutterringly, he would find a time to be even, judge you whether he be not; however thus he was an unhappy Roguish boy, yet Heaven judged him a fit Instrument to discover a Deed so bloody and horribly wicked.

Coming to the place of Execution, I could not see in mine Hosts face any considerable marks of remorse or penitency, onely the fear of death had screwed his face into a hundred ugly affrighting formes: She for her part ascended the Ladder after she had seen the death of her Husband, with magnanimity and Courage; having been in prison, according to report, the greatest Penitent that ever was known to go thence and suffer as a Malefactor, I say she standing undauntedly on the Ladder, spake to the People after this manner, which I here recount as carrying some very remarkable things in it.

The Speech of a Notoriously-wicked Woman at her Execution.

Christian People, the greatness of my Sins have cry'd loud to Heaven for Vengeance a long time, but Mercy hath interceded for the prolongation of my life, to give me a long and a fair opportunity for Repentance, but this long forbearance hath but hardened my heart, and made it obdurate; so that my black and horrid Sins grew so numerous that they awakened divine Justice (which hitherto seemed to sleep) to finde me out, and bring me to this shameful and condign punishment. As I am here before you a sad spectacle of misery, so I hope you will beg of God Mercy for my poor sinful soul, which from my Cradle to this time hath been poluted not with Crimes of a common Die, but such as were conceived in the Womb of Hell, and Mid-wiv'd by me into this wicked world. What Tragical unpattern'd Mischiefs they have acted on the Theater of my native Countrey, my tongue (that cursed Accessary in the ruine of some Families) shall not conceal from you, since I cannot hide them from the knowledge of God Almighty.

When I was so young I wanted power to perpetrate Villany, I had strong inclinations to the acting thereof; I was no sooner wean'd but I had like to have kill'd that Mother who gave me life, by pricking her in the naked breast with a Bodkin I took out of her Head-cloaths, she being then half asleep, holding me in her Lap. When I arrived to the age of fifteen, the boiling of my blood would not let me rest till I had somewhat qualified its heat in the unlawful reception of a young man, after which sinfal act I found my self with Childe, to prevent the shame whereof I murdered it, thinking to hide one smaller sin by the greatness of another; the death I am about to suffer should have been the reward of that execrable murder; and now I wish it had been so, for then I had not strangled in the very birth (to obscond my whoredom from my Husband) a Child, the product of my insatiate lust with a Black-moor, who afterwards lost his own life in the destruction of my Husbands; neither had I been the cause of the death of two more, had I not been the basely obscene Prostitute to them both.

But one more remarkable murder than any yet I have related, I must not conceal, the burthen whereof lies like a mountain on my already over-loaded Conscience. Passing one time for a maid, though then a common debauched whore, this Inn-keeper (my Fellow-sufferer, and justly so, since he was my Co-partner and Complotter in a thousand Roguish Contrivances) courted me to be his Wife, being informed of his wealth I easily condescended, not regarding his goodness so much as his Goods, and left he might find what I was on our Nuptial Night; I caused a pure, but poor Virgin whom I hired to lye in my place for that time, but over-sleeping her prefixt time I had appointed for my exchanging places with her, I was forc'd to fire the house, in which confusion she running down to a Well in the Yard to get water, I pursued her, and partly to be revenged, and partly to be secured from her future discovery, I tumbled her into the Well, and there she perished: As to the last murther of this Gentleman, I must needs confess my Husband though superlatively wicked, had no inclination thereunto, had I not perswaded him; nay, upbraided him with pusilanimity and cowardize if he would not be my Coadjutor and Assistant therein. Now do I wish from the bottom of my disconsolate Soul, I had as many lives as deaths I have occasioned, to offer up as a Sacrifice which might expiate so many crying sins of murder, as I have committed in my life time, this one is too small a satisfaction for the loss of so many, and had I not forfeited it to the Law, yet I ought not to live, considering the debauched course of life I ever liv'd, being no more than a rank stinking weed, which hindred, nay choak'd the growth of wholsom herbs and flowers which otherwise might have prov'd delightful in their fragrancy.

And now to conclude, if you intend to escape this shameful punishment, and not to be made an Example to others, as I am now to you, shun all these Vices and Debaucheries which have dragg'd me to this accursed end, and do not promise to your selves a better conclusion, if from the beginning thereof you continue the prosecution of vicious and debauched Courses; I was as confident as any he or she here, that hanging was too ignominious a death for such a piece of Gallantry as I was, but assure your selves Heaven hath no respect of persons; the Sword of Justice spares no more the shining Gallant and buffing Bravo, than the meanest smutty Tinker; And so desiring the Prayers of the Spectators for her, having rendred her private Applications for her eternal concern, she gave the Sign to the Hangman, and so she was turned off.

[This Speech of the dying person ...]

This Speech of the dying person Mistress Dorothy rehearsed to me, with so much passion giving each word so becoming an accent, that I must confess to you it wrought wonderfully on me, nay it so startled me, that I now began to consider what would become of me, since laying aside murder, (having never imbrewed my hands in blood) I was more notorious in all manner of Vice than the narrowness of a female soul could be capable of imagining, much less of acting, why should I then humor my self into a fancy of escaping, since I have seen so many dismal Examples of this nature, some whereof I have told you, and more I shall of my intimates in the prosecution of my Story, who notwithstanding they have craftily endeavored to conceal their nefarious actions, and projections, yet have been found out by the Omnipotent, nay then when they thought him to sleep over their hainous transgressions, which puts me in mind of an excellent passage of Juvenal, though he be a Heathen, in his Satyr 13.



   ——Fatebere tandem.
Nec surdum, nec tiresiam, quenquam esse Deorum.

Let us confess, since we at last shall finde,
   None of the Gods are either deaf, or blinde.

Craving pardon of Mistress Dorothy, I desired her to proceed, which she did in this manner: Having staid the Execution of my old friend (which was no small trouble to me) but durst not be present left she should discover my Rogueries too, since she was so ingenious to acknowledge her own to the world; I say, I staid no longer than to get what things I had ready, and desiring the Soldier to attend me to London, he had so much favor from his Officer as to get a Furlow for eight weeks, and so away we march'd: Immediately after our arrival, I took Lodgings in Covent-Garden and having cloath'd him like a Gentleman as he was, we agreed to call each other Cousin, lodging under one and the same Roof. His company was very agreable and complaisant, which made me take a great delight in his society. He had a good command of his Mother-tongue, expressing every thing eloquently and facetely, which his invention furnished his mouth withal; when at any time we were alone, he would be continually telling me the Story or other, but chiefly a great many beyond sea Cheats, some whereof he was an eye-witness, but because they all concerned his own Sex, I desired that he would give himself the trouble to recount something of ours; undoubtedly, said I, you were acquainted with the females abroad as well as at home, and I cannot be so ignorant to believe you have not conversed with them. Yes, replyed he, or else I had bin to blame, and should have lost one of the principal ends I went for, if I had not been acquainted as well with the Madam, as the Monsieur; but, continued he, I do not think it proper to recount any of the frailties of women to one of that Sex, that discourse is more proper with men when we triumph and boast of our witty encounters, and waggish over-reachings of that Sex. But, replied I to him, as you have done all this and spent some time in these recitals, so I pray let me further engage you to acquaint me with somewhat of that nature. That you may see, replyed he, how much I am your Servant, I will obey you, and tell you two Stories of two women, who were excellent, and their Stories considerable different.

CHAP. III.

 

The Gentleman Soldier gives an account how he came acquainted with an extraordinary beautiful, yet seemingly reserved Courtezan, who slighting him having spent all upon her, he makes himself amends by cheating her of what she had gotten; he gaines acquaintance with a Mercers Wife, by a mistake, or rather by Letters accidentally falling into his hands, that were sent her by her Innamorretto, by which means he finds a sufficient reward, besides his sensual enjoyment of so lively and grateful a Mistress.

Be pleas'd to know then, continued he, that when I came first into Paris, I supposed that as I was young, handsome, and went in a very rich gentile Garb, so I did believe that it would not be long e're I should have some Message or invitation from some Madam or other, but although I waited long for this Adventure, yet I met with nothing to that purpose, but all the French-Ladies although they are in their converse open and free, yet come up close to them, and they are as cold as December, or that which is colder, Charity, they would not at all be so charitable me a stranger, as permit me to close with them, so that I thought I must have returned from thence as wise as I went, for any thing I should know of woman; I finding that of my self I could not do any thing, therefore observed those of my acquaintance what they did in that Case, and at length I found that for all their braggs they were as well furnished with Mistresses as I was, and indeed had none, or at the least none at all that they durst particularly own, but a poor common Courtesanna: I seeing there was no better to be had, was resolved rather than fail to put in there, and to play at small Game rather than stand out: wherefore I took the next opportunity of going with one of my acquaintance to one of those houses, but although I had fasted a great while yet my stomach was so squeamish that I liked nothing that was there, but onely in drinking and talking spent some time and so departed.

I was observed whilest I was there by an old grave Matrona, who two or three days after meeting me alone, told me that she had seen me at the house aforesaid, by which she could guess at my business, and finding that there was never a Dish that liked my Pallar, and being desirous to be civil to, and accommodate all strangers, she would pleasure me so far as to bring me acquainted with the most celebrated beauty of all Paris, I liked her proposition; first gave her thanks, and then told her if she would name the time and place I would gladly wait on her; She told me that she was ready at all times and in all places to serve me, and that therefore I might appoint what time I pleas'd. I who had no business but my pleasure, answered that if she would about four of the Clock in the afternoon come to the place where we then were, I would not fail to meet her, she telling me that she would come at the time, we parted; I went to sprucifie my self and put Money in my pocket, and she went as I suppose to prepare the Madam to receive me. The time being come, I went to the place appointed, where I met with my Conductress who already waited for me, I went with her, and in short time we arrived at the house intended, I was conducted up stairs, and received by the Lady with much kindness; the old woman made a Speech to us both, tending to the purpose intended, and then wine being call'd for and a Banquet, we regalled our selves and spent our time in pleasant conversation; the old woman knowing what I came for, in convenient time left me alone with the Lady, who permitted me to take the satisfaction I desired, and then I giving her a handful of Crown-peices which was the Key of the work, and she promising me a continuance of her love. The Old woman was again call'd for, when she came we renewed our discourse, which continuing for some time longer, I also giving somewhat to the old woman, and the Servants of the house, we soon after parted.

As I went to my Lodging I considered of the Adventure I had met with, and the next day enquired what this Lady was, and upon enquiry found that she was a right Bona Roba, but such an one that was not ordinary, but reserved, and onely kept company with the better sort of Monsieurs, I was well enough pleas'd, with what had hapened, and was resolved during my stay in Paris to look no further after any female, and accordingly I ofen frequented her house, and was receivd as kindly as I could expect, I commanded the house in all I pleased, and lay there when I thought good; but this my pleasure consumed and confounded my pocket, and my allowance from England being but small, was in short time so wasted that I could not hold out to spend so largely as I had done, and as the strength of my pocket decreased, so did her love diminish, and when I had no more mony, she had no more love, No longer pipe, no longer dance , and now as others had formerly been denied and kept out of her doors, to entertain me so, then the doors were shut against me for others; I was vexed at the baseness and ingratitude of this woman, and resolv'd to be revenged of her if I could, and I made it my onely study to do so. I had written into England for mony, which was in short time to come, till when I plaid the good husband and staid within doors, and so recovered my expences, so that when my mony came I was in capacity to put new Cloaths on my back, and good store of Crowns in my pocket, I likewise borrowed some Rings of some of my acquaintance, to whom I communicated my design desiring their assistance, which they accordingly promised me. Being thus well furnished, and set out with a good outside, new Clothes, I again attempted to see my quondam Mistress, but was the first time denied entrance, although I was so liberal as to give the Servant a Crown-piece, and thereby had the meanes to discover that I had more of the same in my pocket, but the next time that I came thither, I was admitted, and my Mistress pleasantly saluting me, told me that I was very welcome from my Voyage: I ask'd, what Voyage? she told me from England; I replyed I had not been there lately; she told me that then some body had abused her and me both, and told lies of me; for, said she, I did not question if you had been in these parts but I should have seen you, where you always have been welcome; for, continued she, you know that so long as I have a house you may command your welcome in it, I but thought I to little purpose, and concluded that all these terms of welcome were but the words of Dissimulation, and would last no longer than my money did in pocket, but being resolv'd to prosecute my Design, I would not so far take notice of what she said as to quarrel with her about it, but using my former wonted freedom, I sate down, and call'd for such wine and other things as I had a mind to, and spent two or three hours very pleasantly with her, and by that means renewing my acquaintance, I gave no occasion of distrust of what I intended. During my stay there I gave her the convenience of seeing a rich Gold Watch I had in my pocket, and several Rings I had on my fingers, and that my pockets were very well lyned with Silver and Gold, and drawing out as much as was sufficient, I delivered it to her Servant to provide a Supper against the next night, when I told her I would return and sup, and lye there, she telling me I should be welcome, we for that time parted. I then went to two or three of my acquaintance who were to help me in my Design, and directing them what to do; the time appointed being come, I went to her house, and knowing that my mistress was a great Lover of wine, and that it would be necessary to make her drunk, I carried some bottles with me; being arrived there she again kindly welcomed me, and pleas'd her eyes with beholding my rich Suit of Cloaths, my Watch, Rings, and the fulness of my pockets, not questioning but that I would leave a good part of these behind me, but she reckoned without her Host, as I shall presently tell you.

Supper being ready we sate down at the Table, and did eat plentifully, but did drink more abundantly; I telling her that she must be merry, she to oblige me drank off her Cups so roundly, that she fell asleep as she sate at the Table, from whence I caused her to be carried to Bed, where she was no sooner laid, but she fell a snoring. I then having given the Servants a Dose of the same Liquor caused them to go to Bed, telling them that I could undress my self, and go to Bed without their assistance.

I then being alone looked about to see wha-was to be done, I there saw a Cabinet wherin was the womans Jewels and money, and looking a little further I saw her Cloathes, and some Plate, and not long after my friends whom I had appointed being come, I began to work, first I threw down out at the window her best Cloathes, and all my own, and by the help of her Garters I let down the Cabinet, her Plate, and so much as the silver Candlesticks which we had used; this done, I left the window open, and then went to Bed to my Lady, who although she slept hard at present, yet before morning she awaked, and then we spent our time as we formerly had done; and being somewhat wearied, we again went to sleep, but about an hour after awaking and finding that it was broad day-light, I call'd out for the Servant to bring me my Clothes that I might rise, in regard (as I said) that I had some business to dispatch that morning. But the Servant looking about for them and not seeing them, nor her Mistresses, nor the Cabinets nor the Candlesticks, and missing many other things which she had over night left in the Chamber; and seeing one of the Chamber windows open, she cryed out, O Lord Madam, we are robb'd; at this cry her Mistress drawing the Curtain, ask'd what was the matter for that noise? O Lord, replyed the wench, we are robb'd, for I cannot see your Clothes, your Cabinet, your Plate, nor several other things. Heavens forbid, said the Mistress, I hope you lye; no truly Mistress, continued the wench. Where then, said I, is my Clothes? They are likewise stoln, replied the Wench, for I cannot find them. At this word I seem'd to be mightily astonished, and thereupon I said:

Madam, put these Tricks and Gulleries upon others, and not upon me, who can see through all your disguises, what do you intend, or think to chowse me in this manner? How my Love, replied she, what do you say? Now you see I am utterly ruin'd, is this all the comfort you will give me? No, no, replied I, you must sing another Song, or else 'le make you, because you saw I came hither with good Cloathes, and my pockets cramm'd with money, and Jewels, you think to catch me with this trick, making me believe that you have been robb'd, but I swear to you, continued I, that you shall not carry it thus, and that I will go to the Magistrate and have you and your Family every one of you clapt up; and having thus said, I leapt out of the Bed, and naked as I was in my shirt, I went to the window and cryed out, Thieves. This poor woman now more dead than alive seeing that besides her great Loss, she was likely to receive a great affront, leaped also out of the Bed, and falling about my neck, with lifted up hands, and tears in her eyes, begg'd of me to have pity on her, and that now after she had lost all I would not go to ruine her quite in her Reputation; I therefore seemed to be moved with her Prayers, but said to her, must I then be forced to live here for want of Cloathes to go out? No (replied she) go to Bed again, and I will send to one of my friends to borrow a Suit of Cloathes for you, and thereupon she immediately sent away to a French-Knight who was one of her Gallants, to borrow one of his best Suits of Cloathes pretending that she had a fancy to disguise her self in mans apparel. The Messenger soon returning, and bringing a fair Suit of Cloaths, and all other necessaries, I arose, dressed my self, and taking my leave of my Mistress, went to my friends, where upon examination of my Cabinet, I found that I had increas'd my stock to above twice as much treasure as I had spent upon her, and a good Suit of Cloathes into the bargain: He having finished his story (said Mistress Dorothy) I told him he was very hard hearted to use a poor Lady so, and one who had been so kind to him, and that although she had refused him admittance when all his mony was spent, there is some reason for it, for it is possible said I, you would have brought her and your self into extream want and beggary; well, replied he, I know you are not a competent Judge in this Case, and therefore I was unwilling to acquaint you with any of these matters; but, continued he, I will if you please, proceed in the other story I promised you, and so conclude.

I desiring him so to do, he went on thus: I being in this manner, said he, revenged of one Mistress, did resolve to leave her off quite, left she should in time pay me off in my own Coin, and did endeavor to get another, but could not meet with or find any to my mind; but I and one of those of my acquaintance who had assisted me in my late exploit, one day talking of our female friends, told me that indeed, although he had not gain'd so much by a Mistress at once as I had done by mine, yet he had such a Mistress as had bin not onely pleasing, but very profitable to him, for said he, I can command fifty or a hundred Crowns at any time; I marry Sir, said I, that is a good Mistress indeed, and is more than ordinary; yes, replyed he, she is no ordinary person. I hearing him say so, knew it was to no purpose to ask her Name and Quality, but did resolve so to watch him that I would find it out, I therefore usually kept him company and like his shadow still attended him, but he being as as cunning as I was crafty, so privately mannag'd his amours, that I could not possibly find him out, I therefore sometimes lay with him, and took the opportunity of searching his Pockets for Letters, but found none, so that I was very doutful of attaining my Ends, which was to discover who this unknown invisible Lady was; I finding that my acquaintance was too close to get any thing out of, was resolved to take another course, and since I could not out-wit the Master, try if my Boy could out-wit his; I therefore instructed my Boy in what he was to do, and ordered him to get in with the other, and get out of him one time or other, whether he did not carry Letters to any Persons, and to whom. My Boy was not so long about his Discovery as I had been about mine, for in a short time he told me that the Boy was often employed to carry Letters to a Mercers Maid, who lived in the next street, and also to a Carrier who conveyed Letters to an Unkle; I now partly knowing the Who, was desirous of knowing the What, and therefore ordered my Boy by one meanes or other to get one of his Letters and bring it unto me; he so well discharged himself in this employ, that it was not long e're he brought me one. I being very curious to know the Contents, soon opened it, for heating a Knife in the fire, I put it under the Seal, which melted the Wax in that place, and so it was open, wherein I found these Expressions.

Madam,

I am very sorry that I am so unfortunate, that in the term of fourteen days I have not not had the happiness of waiting on you, sure the old man is grown jealous, or which is worse, you begin to slight me, or else some expedient might have been found to have deceived him; I shall say no more at present, referring the rest of my Complaints till I see you, which happy minute I beseech you hasten, or else you will very much afflict

Your constant Friend,
S. N.

When I had read the Letter, I was almost as much to seek as I was before, because it was directed to one who was a Servant to the Mercer, but upon second thoughts I concluded, that although it was directed to the Maid, yet it might be intended to the Mistress, as indeed it was; I having read the Letter, melted some wax and sealed it again, the Impression of the old Seal remaining as fair as formerly. My Boy who brought it me, asked if he should carry it again; I first, before I answered him, enquired of him how he came by it? he told me thus, that the other boy told him he had Letters to carry for his Master; and therefore, said he, if you will go to the River and wash, I have, said he, a good excuse; I (said my boy) told him that I would go with him if he would go strait then to the River; he replied, he was commanded to carry the Letter first, but I perswaded him to go first to the River, to the end that I might serve you in what you commanded, and therefore being come to the water, I did not make so much haste as he, but let him go in, so soon as he was in the water, I searching his pockets, and finding this Letter came with all speed, and told the other boys that were there, that I would go in at a place a little further, and swim down to them; and so, Sir, said he, to me, I made all possible haste, and have here brought the Letter; I having heard his Tale, commanded him to run with all expedition, and put the Letter into the boys pocket, he did so, and was not at all discovered or suspected. I having thus gained some knowledg in my friends amours and being desirous to discover more, walked out to the Street where the Mercer dwelt, where I saw both man and wife in the Shop; there was much disparity in their years, for he seemed to be seventy, and she not above twenty four, I presently guessed that this must be she, and therefore pretending to buy, I went into the shop, where I was shewed several Stuffs by her, he sitting at the further end of the shop coughing by himself; she had such a winning way in perswading me to the goodness and cheapness of the Stuff, that although I had no intention to buy, yet I laid out some money with her, she was perfectly handsome, and it had been great pity if she had onely been tyed to that old Carcass, but I knew that she had a friend who could do her business for her, and all that I then wished, was that I might be in his place, and take his turn; and this I was resolved to do, or stretch my wit on the tenters of invention.

The next day my Boy brought me another Letter, which was from my Companions Unkle, and I having opened that as I had done the former, found that his Unkle was sick, but however intended to be in Paris in few days, and then he would supply him with the money he desired; I closed the Letter again, and the boy conveyed it to the place were he had it, viz. the other boys pocket, who gave it to his Master two hours after when he returned home, being for the present gone out; by this Letter I understood that he had his maintenance from his Unkle, and that he had lately written for some, and that this was the answer; I took exact notice of his Unkles name, and writ it down in my Table book; I being desirous to discover from himself what I partly knew already, to that end I walked out with him, and engaged him to go into that Street where the Mercer dwelt, but although we did so, and I then curiously observed him, yet he did not so much as cast an eye in to the Shop, although the woman and her Husband were both there, but I remember turning down by that Shop into a blind Lane, he looked towards a back-door, which I then perceived was belonging to that house, and which I guessed might be the way whereby he went to his Mistress.

I having made all these inspections into the matter in hand, was resolved to make some further, use of my experience. When about ten days after my boy came sweating to me, and told me that he had gotten another Letter, which the other boy received in his Masters absence, who would not be back in two hours, but then he must deliver it to him; who brought it? said I, a Porter said the Boy; I hearing this had a minde to have delivered it back again without opening, because I did suppose it came onely from his Unkle, or some other friend, about some ordinary affairs, not judging that a Letter of love would be sent by an ordinary Porter; I was in this determination, which had I followed I should have thought my self very unfortunate, but a curiosity possessing me, I resolved to see the Co tents, wherefore using my former way of heating my Knife, I opened the Letter, and therein found these Lines:

My dear Friend,

I hope at your last visit I gave you satisfaction in every thing, especially why I had not seen you for fourteen days before, I must confess it was a long time of absence and you may assure your self that I thought it so as well as you, I also hope that you have no suspition of my constancy, and that you may assure your self of my love to you, I have provided the hundred Crowns you desired; if you come on Thursday night about eleven of the Clock to our Back-door, our trusty Servant will let you in, and conduct you to a Chamber, where I will attend you, but I must engage you not to speak to me, for I am in great fear of your being overheard, by my Husbands Kinswoman, who lies the next wall to me, and is very curious over me; follow these directions and you shall engage,

Your constant Friend,
M. L.

How much was I surpriz'd in the reading of this Letter, you may easily judge, but you may be sure I was resolved not to part from it, but now I concluded I might put my Design in practice; I had not long consulted with my self what to do, but I had resolved my self in all doubts and scruples: and therfore taking Pen, Ink, and Paper, I writ this following Letter:

Sir,

Your Unkle, according to his intentions of coming to Paris, was come so far as ray house, but was there taken so sick, that he could not, neither is he able at present, to proceed in his Journey, and doubting that he will be worse, hath ordered me to send to you, that you may be acquainted with it, and withall, that you may come to him, he being not able to come to you, therefore expects you here with all the expedition you can make, this is all at present from

Your loving Friend,
though unknown,
L. T.

This Letter being thus written, I dated it two days before, and subscribed it from an Inn in a Town forty miles off from Paris, it was directed to him in the usual manner and form; and so having sealed it, I gave it my boy, who soon conveyed it to the place where he had the other. And that my Project might take effect, I went immediately to find him out, resolving to keep him continually in my fight, and oversee all his Actions, from the time he should receive his Letter, till I should see him on Horseback, on his Journey. I soon found him out, and went home with him, where the Boy gave him the Letter, he opened it, and retired, I gave him the conveniency of reading it, which he soon did, and coming up to me, told me that he had hasty News; is it private? replyed I; no, said he, but I think I must leave your company for a few days; when, said I, to morrow morning, said he; that is much! replied I, sure it is hasty News indeed, if you must be gone so soon; yes truly, said he, you may see the Letter, and then you may judge of the matter; hereupon he delivered me the Letter, which I having read over, told him that indeed if this Unkle, who was sick, was as nearly allied to him in friendship, as he was in consanguinity, that then it was necessary he should suddenly obey his Orders. He is, replied he, not onely my Unkle, but my Father, for I never knew no other Father I had, for my Father his Brother died, when I was but six months old, and left me and my Estate to his disposing; neither, continued he, hath he any Child or Relation nearer than I am; I told him that if it were so, I would advise him not to let any time slip but to take Horse and be gone that night; he was unwilling so to do; for, said he, I have another affair to dispatch that is of considerable consequence, I supposing it was his Love-business, and being resolv'd to beat him off from all proceedings therein at the present, fearing lest he should send some Letter, and so my design would be frustrate; I therefore said, that nothing whatever should hinder me from present going, if I were in his condition, and if he would communicate his other affairs to me, I would act for him all that I could to my power; he answered me that the affairs he meant were of such a quality, that none but himself could dispatch; I replyed that I then supposed they might be of some Love-concern, to this he onely laughed, and finding that he had a great inclination to do somewhat in that nature that might spoil my design; I therefore used so many rguments with him to cause him to begin his Journey, that I saw him that Evening on horseback, with a resolution to ride twenty miles onward of his Journey that night, that so he might reach the end of it the next day betimes.

And now I having dispatch'd him out of the way, did not question but I might accomplish my Design as I had determined. It was then but Tuesday night, and the time appointed by the Letter was Thursday night, so that till then I waited with some impatience, but the hour being come, I went to the place, which was the Back-door, which I had formerly taken notice of. I was so desirous of finishing the Adventure I was about, that I had made more haste than ordinary, and being come somewhat before the precise time, I was forced to wait, not daring to knock lest I should offend. But long I had not staid, before an adjoyning Clock struck eleven, and within less than a minute afterwards the door opened, and a Female looking out, and seeing me walk, beckoned me to come on; I did so, and without one words speaking, entred the house, and following my Conductress close at the heels, went up stairs, and coming to a Chamber door, she onely said, now Sir, you may enter there to your and my Mistress, and stay till I come and call you, which will be about two hours hence, but I pray be sure you talk not, lest that discover you; I listened attentively to what was told me, and promising obedience onely by a Bow which I made, the Servant left me, and I entred the Chamber; although there was no Candle, yet I could see where the Bed stood, and going thither I saw my Mistress whom I saluted, and then retiring pul'd off my Clothes and leap'd into Bed to her, I lay down by her, and during the two hours time I staid you may be sure I was not idle, I made no noise by speaking, knowing that it might be of dangerous consequence in a double manner; and the two hours being come, our Attendant came and told me it was time to rise, I, though unwilling enough, did so, and putting on my Cloths was soon dress'd, and coming once more to kiss my Mistress, she told me softly that in the window in a Purse was the hundred Crowns she promis'd; I making her a profound Reverence, and kissing her hand, went thither, and finding the Purse, put it into my Pocket, and the maid hastening me, I departed, when she came to the Back-door she told me that e're many dayes, she would find a way how I might enjoy my Mistress with more freedom; I pulling a Crown out of my pocket, put it into her hand, and bade her goodnight: And thus, said the young Gentleman, did I obtain my ends upon this Gentlewoman; and (said he) I being now entred was resolved to proceed, and therefore the next day went again by the door, and seeing none but her self in the Shop, I entred, and desired to see Silk enough for a New-suit; she shew'd it me, and I soon agreed on the price, giving her her own demands, but when I came to pay, and drew out the purse she had given me, which was a very remarkable one; she looked very wishfully on it; Nay Madam, said I, it is the same I receiv'd of you last night; how! replied she, am I betraid then? No dear Madam, said I, there is no Treachery in the Case, onely the excess of my love to you, made me run a great hazard; I hope, Sir, replied she, you are not guilty of any murder of my former friend, no Madam (said I) I have onely by a piece of Wit remov'd him at present: well, Sir, (replied she) you seem to be a Gentleman of that temper that you will not wrong a woman, I have not time or opportunity to discourse with you at large, but that I may engage you to secrecy, I not onely freely give you the money you have in possession, but also I desire you to accept this Stuff you intended to buy, and I pray, with your first conveniency let me have an account of this strange Adventure; I had hardly time to answer her (You shall Madam) but her Husbands Kinswoman came near us, all that I could do was to deliver the parcel to my boy, and making the ordinary Reverence, I departed.

CHAP. IV.

 

Mistress Dorothy finishes the Story of the Gentleman-Soldier and Mercers Wife; who being returned to England, renews his Suit to his old Mistress, though married to another, whose weakness made the match unsuitable, whose Estate depending on an Heir, and this Husband uncapable of getting one, gave the Gentleman that opportunity whereby he at once had a Wife, an Heir, and an Estate.

Thus (continued the young Gentleman) did I initiate my acquaintance with this woman, which is one of the best and pleasantest Adventures of my life, and indeed, said he, I have no cause to complain of women, for that Sex hath hitherto been very lucky to me, as you may guess by my Story of the Courtezan, whose Cabinet and other things I conveyed away; and now by this second French -adventure I was likely to gain more, and that more honorably than by the other. But, continued he, in six days after my Companion returned from his Journey; I asked him if me must not all have Sables? Why? said he; because, replied I, I suppose that your Unkle is dead, and hath left you all he hath: No such matter, replied he, but I could wish that he were hang'd that writ the Letter; why? said I, I think it was very carefully done of him, and that he deserved, not onely thanks, but a Reward; I should reward him if I knew who he was, said he; why, cannot you find him? said I; No, nor no body else, said he, there is no such Sign nor no such man, living in or near that Town, nor in all that Countrey, that I could hear off; but I hope (said I) there was and is such an Unkle; yes, reply'd he, and Heavens be praised, in health too, but I was forc'd to go further a field to finde him, for after I had spent a whole day in fruitless search for the Host, who sent the Letter, and could not hear of any Tale nor Tidings of him, I being within thirty miles of my Unkles habitation, thought it very proper to ride on thither, and so I did, but when I came I found him well, and lusty, I shewed him the Letter, and thereby he knew the occasion of my Journey, but he knew not who writ it, and he and I both concluded it was a trick put upon me, however we were joyful to see one another well, and he intended to take a journey to Paris in few days to order me some moneys, but since I was come my self, he resolved to desist from that journey, and give me Bills of Exchange; fain he would have engaged me to have staid there for some days longer, but telling him I had affairs of consequence to dispatch at Paris, that required my presence, he gave me leave to depart: and so, said he, with all possible expedition I am returned: and you are very welcome (replyed I) but this was a very strange adventure of the Letter, and I cannot tell to what purpose, nor I neither, said he, but I hope to find it out, for I preserve the Letter carefully. I gave him the hearing, and now knowing his thoughts, I believed my self obliged to mind his Actions, as for the Letter he had, and his Design of finding out the Writer of the Letter by the hand I knew he could not, for although I writ it, yet it was in such a hand as I never writ before, and which I then writ on purpose not to be discovered by it, if he should be acquainted with my hand, as hitherto he was not, wherefore I car'd not for that, but my chiefest care was in charging my Boy to watch his, and knowing that he would suddenly write a Letter to send to his Mistress, I commanded him to use all possible diligence to get it into his Custody, and bring it to me, as being a matter of very great Consequence.

My boy followed my directions so carefully, that he attained his ends but with much difficulty, for no sooner was my friend parted from me, but he writ a Letter to his Mistress, and giving it to the boy, charged him immediately to carry it: My boy who waited all his motions, seeing him running with a Letter in his hand, asked him what haste? great haste, said the boy, and would have proceeded, but my boy caught hold on him, and said, how now, what is your haste so great that you cannot spare time to drink with your friends? time enough for that anon, said the boy, and would have proceeded; but my boy knowing how strictly I had charged him about this Letter, was resolved by hook or by Crook to be Master of it, and therefore told him, that although he had not been so civil as to give him his Foy when he went out (for he had been the Journey with his Master) yet he would now give him his Welcome home. The other understanding there was Drink in the Case, and that of Free-cost, went in with him to the next Drinking-house, and my boy knowing what a work he had in hand, calling for a quart of Wine desired a Room above Stairs; so that up they went, and my boy intending to fuddle the other, cheated him in his drink, for after two or three glasses were off, and the other Boy began to be merry, my boy drank water, and the other wine, so that in short time he was knock'd down and fell asleep; and it was not long e're he took the letter out of his pocket, and that he might make all sure, he locked the Chamber door, bringing the Key with him, and thus he securing the Letter, and boy both; came to me and brought me the Letter, which I immediately opened, and read these words:

Madam,

Ever since that fortunate minute wherein I first had the happiness to be acquainted with you, my stars I thank them have been very propicious to me; and Dame Fortune (how unconstant soever she hath been to others) hath yet been to me very favourable, so that till within these few days I could boast that no malevolent Planet hath had any malign influence in my ascendant; I thought and hoped I should have lived and died in this opinion; but I now have cause enough to change my mind, for I have lately had such a cross adventure, that I yet know not what to think of it, but if all be right and well with you, I then bid defiance to Fortune; Madam, I am very unquiet and much puzzl'd, so that I know not how to begin, nor well know what to say to you, but hoping you will pardon this impertinence, and attribute it to my perplexity; I shall thus plainly begin with you, and this it is, Madam, about ten days since when I last was with you, among other Requests I desired a hundred Crowns of you for a present use, till my Unkle whom I every day expected should come to Town; in regard you never refused me any thing, I did not doubt of that, and therefore expected to hear from you accordingly; but just at that time when I expected a Letter from you, I received one from my Unkle as I thought, whereby, as that Letter inform'd me, I thought it absolutely necessary to leave Paris, and go to him forty miles, to a Town where he lay sick, I was perswaded to be gone immediately, and indeed over-ruled by an intimate friend, and one that I have so great a respect for, that I had no reason to suspect, and what he urged being as I thought reasonable: I soon mounted on horseback and departed, I must beg your pardon that I did not acquaint you with this sudden remove, but it was impossible to do it without suspition of my friend from whom I have hitherto conceal'd our amours, as I have done from all the world besides.

This Letter which I received, I found was but forged, and written on purpose to cause me to leave the City, but if in my absence I have not received some prejudice in your opinion, I account all the rest of my trouble and vexation as nothing, wherefore I pray Madam, let me know in what condition I am in with you, and whether you know anything, and what you do know of this Adventure, and I shall always remain

Your constant Friend,
S. N.

When I had read this Letter, I found that half my work was done to my hand, for I was resolved to write to this woman, and now having a fit opportunity I writ as followeth.

Madam,

Some months since, I had occasion to lay out some money in some Stuff, and my good fortune guiding me to your Shop, I there not onely saw but pitied you, for that I saw you were wedded to one more fit to be your Father than Husband; that pity begot love, and that so violent, that I knew not how to suppress it, I thought it might be possible to be favourably receiv'd by you, but knew not how to make my Addresses to you, lest your honor should be brought in question, I therefore waited all opportunities, and at length found one, the most lucky that could befal: for my friend Mounsieur N. being absent, and a Letter of yours coming into my hands, I had a great curiosity to see it, doubting that it was, what indeed, I found it to be, a Letter of Love; but when I found that it was from you, and that thereby was a particular appointment for him to come to you; I was mightily pleas'd, and you may judge the great satisfaction I receiv'd. My love towards you being so violent, I was resolv'd to hazard my friendship to him, and rather than fail, be a Traitor; and indeed, what would I not have done, to have had the happiness of enjoying you. Therefore Madam, knowing his absence would be absolutely necessary, it was I that fram'd that Letter which caused his Journey, and thereby I had the happiness in his stead to be well used by you, and now Madam, you may unfold the Riddle, but I hope you are so discreet as to conceal the truth of this Adventure, which were it discovered, would be of dangerous consequence, not onely to us both, but also to your own Reputation; I judge you will conceal it, and hope you will give me other opportunities of waiting on you, when I shall acquaint you particularly how I came by that Letter and this; Thus hoping that I may enjoy the second place if not the first in your esteem, I rest

Your most ardently affectionate
Friend
M. G.

This Letter being written, I enclosed it in the other, and gave it my boy, who ran immediately to the house where he left his drunken Companion, and opening the door he made so much noise as awaked him, wherefore my boy seeing him ready to rise, ran to him, and insensibly convey'd the Letter into his pocket.

The Boy being now pretty sober, remembred the Errant he was sent about, and doubting he should be chid would needs depart about it; my boy permitted him so to do, and so came home to me.

And thus Mistress Dorothy (said he to me) did I discover the whole intreague of this business to my Mistress, and she soon after sent a Letter to me, and another to my friend, wherein she mannag'd the Concern so tenderly and so handsomely, that she satisfied him and me both, and I having a Summons from her, waited on her three miles out of the Town, where I acquainted her with all that she was ignorant of, and I pressed her so with my affection, that she accepted me, and I think in time I had the first place in her affection: And thus said he, did I live the pleasantest life in the world, all the time that I staid in Paris; and now I hope, said he, I have satisfied you with my amours, which hitherto had been very fortunate, and I thank my Stars, Venus hath been ever my Friend, or else I had not had the happiness of your acquaintance, and thus did he fully finish his discourse.

And now, said Mistress Dorothy, I have related all that I think is convenient and necessary about my Gentleman Soldier, and therefore I shall conclude that Story; No, said I, I have some Questions to ask you, which I desire to be satisfied in, and which I believe will engage you in a little further discourse: That which I am first to desire of you is, that since you have entertained us so largely, and indeed pleasantly, with the adventures of the Gentleman Soldier, that you would tell us what becam of him, and what more you know of him? for, continued I, I am perswaded that all you can say of him is so considerable, that it is worth our hearing, and your recital. Truly, replyed mistress Dorothy, I have indeed somewhat more to say of him, which may be as pleasant as the rest, but his Stories being onely things by the by, and which do not at all concern you, and me very little, I thought what hath been said already is enough, but if you will needs hear me proceed further, I will not refuse you the satisfaction you desire.

I have already, told you of his two French-Adventures, neither did he tell me of any thing more that befel him in France which was considerable; but he having quitted that Country, and being come to England, it was not long e're I came acquainted with him, and our acquaintance proceeding to a familiarity, he not onely related to me all those adventures I have already recited, but he also told me the condition and state of his affairs at present: He told me that he left England upon a discontent, for he having been in love with a young Gentlewoman, one of his own age and Quality, and that so long and effectually, that he had won her to consent to marriage, provided her parents did so: but when they came acquainted with his pretentions, they absolutely refus'd it, for no other reason but that his estate did not equal hers, for she was the onely childe of her Parents, who were very rich, and he although he was equal to her in birth, yet in Estate he came far short, as being a younger Brother, and having but a small allowance or patrimony, nor indeed was there much probability of any encrease or addition to his Estate: This was the Consideration why he was refused, and therefore having again tryed his Ladies minde who although she loved him well, yet was resolved in her marriage to be wholy guided by her friends, and finding himself frustrated in his hopes and expectations, he therefore become melancholly and discontent, so that to throw off that indisposition which this had caused, he resolved for travel, and thereupon to France he went, where as I have told you, Venus made him some amends for the dissatisfaction he had had in England , but in time he being weary of that place, and returning home, he found his Mistress married to another, who had been more fit for a winding-sheet than so young and fair a Bride, for although he who had married her, was not very old, yet he was in a deep Consumption, and thereby wholy incapacitated to plese a Lady. That which made her friends impose this Choice upon her, was his great wealth: In this condition he found her at his return, and considering the Condition she was in, he had some hopes one day of enjoying her, either as a Wife or Mistress; to this end he made some Addresses to her but they being taken notice of by her Parents, but more especially by her Husband, she was forced to command him to forbear any more visits; with much unwillingness he did obey her, but it was but for a while, for he getting acquainted with her Chamber-maid, who was flexible enough or easie to be made so by Gifts or Presents he bestowed on her at present, and large promises of what he would do for the future, so that in short time he won her to be at his dispose, and to betray her masters secrets. Whereupon, when her Master was absent, she presently gave him notice of it, and perswaded her Mistress to walk abroad to such places where he was sure to meet her. She like a woman of much vertue and constancy, for a large time held out, and would not so much as entertain any conversation with him, but in the end by his humble and amorous Letters and fervent Protestations of a vertuous love, promising her that he designed nothing against her vertue, and since he could no enjoy her love, that he might have the first place in her esteem; she at length consented to treat with him, and now he being admitted to treat, by degrees insinuated his old love and great misfortune, he let her know his great constancy, which as it had, so it should continue with him til death, these discourses and other arguments which he us'd, were as the Bellows to blow up a flame out of the very ashes where it had long lain, so that as she could not deny but that she had formerly loved him, and that most tenderly, so she could have done so still had she not been married, but being married, she told him it was her Duty to banish all thoughts of former love: but as he had now brought her to confess a former love, so he left not off there, but by degrees perswaded her to a new friendship, not a new one but a renewing of the old; and as friendship had been the first step to their former love, so it was now, and she in a short time confessed that as she had, so she still did love him; in fine he brought her to this pass, that she confessed she lov'd him as well as ever, and were she free to choose a husband, she would chuse him before all the world; he having gained thus much upon her, by degrees proceeded further, and he promising to remain always unmarry'd, in expectation of that time, that she might be free to marry; she promised him that if ever that time came, that she would certainly marry him before all the persons in the world. At this point they continued for some moneths, and her Husbands Consumptive-distemper encreasing, there was great hope, that in short time it would send him to the other world, where he was wishd to be with all earnestness. As their converse continued, so their love encreased, and he became impatient of delays, and was so bold as to desire of her the onely thing she had refus'd him, but very angry she was when he first made the proposition; wherefore he was forced to forbear any further discourse of that nature, but her husbands lingring distemper continuing, our Lover was out of all patience, and therefore he was once again resolved to propound that to her, without the enjoyment of which, he could not be happy nor quiet, wherefore being resolved what to do, he was now to think how to do it, and believing that if he should begin any discourse to her upon a subject which she had hitherto wholly dislik'd, he should be interrupted and not heard out, and it may be she would proceed into some violent language against him, wherefore he was resolv'd to communicate his thoughts to her in writing, and there he intended to be very plain with her, whereupon he writ, and sent her this Letter.

Madam,

It is now some years since I first began to affect you, and that affection in time became so violent, that I was forc'd to discover it to you, you did not at all dislike it at first, for in little time I found a tender Esteem from you, which by my Constancy and Perseverance was so encreas'd, that I perceiv'd you did also love me, neither were you asham'd to own the affection you had for me, but made me Protestations of a love that should be lasting, and there was nothing wanting, as we thought to make us both happy, but the consent of your Parents; but that not being gained, I preferr'd your interest and quiet before my own, and not being able to live near you, and not see and love you, which by the inhumanity of your friends I was forbid to do, I entred into a voluntary banishment, and leaving all the enjoyments and pleasures of my own Countrey, went into another, hoping in time that Fortune who had been so cross to me might be more favourable, but although I staid some time in Forraign parts, and at my return heard of my misfortune, and indeed your as unfortunate marriage, yet time had not banished you out of my thoughts, I still had you perfectly in remembrance, and found that my love to you was so far from being extinguished, that it was then ready to burst out into a new flame. The obstacle of your being married and thereby of the impossibity of my attaining my ends, did not hinder me from endeavoring it, and I did so constantly persevere in my endeavors, that I brought you not onely to a mute compliance, but by degrees I brought you to acknowledge that you still loved me, and that if ever you were free to chuse, I should be the happy man whom you would have for a Husband; the constancy of my affection hath wrought this miracle, but I cannot perswade you to proceed further, and this, at present is the state of the matter between us. Now Madam, having done all this, I am perswaded you may yield to what I further desire of you: I know the strictness of your Vertue absolutely forbids you any thoughts, but I pray let me be plain with you, and pardon these expressions which I shall use to you, although you may judge them immodest: Madam, you have promised to make me your Husband when it is in your power, and I believe it is in your thoughts that one day you may do it, for he who is your present Husband, appears to me and all the world to be half dead already: He being in this condition, why will you not permit me to reap the fruits of a long affection? but anticipating that happy time that I hope must and will come; and Madam, besides these reasons, I believe and hope it will be for your profit, for I understand the Condition of your marriage runs thus, That if he dies without Issue by you, then his Estate returns to his next Heir, and thereby you will be never the better for your marriage, and all this time you have spent with him, is time ill spent and lost; but if you will permit me, I hope to prevent the losing of the Estate, for I question not but there is so great a harmony in our Affections, that a child will proceed from us, and then when you lose your Husband, you will not lose your Estate. This Madam, is good policy, and although in the strictness of your Vertue you may not entertain any such thoughts, yet I am confident you may live to repent the not doing it, Therefore hoping that these reasons will be sufficient to over-rule you, and that I offer this as much for your content as my own, I ever rest,

Your constant Lover,
M. G.

CHAP. V.

 

Mistress Dorothy having finished this last Story, relates how a woman by her own confession, at her husbands death discovered the common inconstancy of the Sex, and her disloyalty to her Husband, by being provided before hand.

This (continued Mistress Dorothy) was the Letter that our Lover sent to his Mistress, whose chast thoughts engag'd her in a great anger against him, but whether it were real or feign'd you may judge by the sequel, for it was not long e're he was admitted into her favour, and then having the liberty of converse, and being resolv'd to prosecute his intentions, he so back'd his Letters with Arguments, that caused her to give a mute compliance, and silence being the best token of consent, he by that gathered that she did yield, wherefore he again engaging the Chamber-maid in his Designs, and acquainting her that her Mistress had yielded to him in every particular but enjoyment, neither did she refuse him that, he desired her to stand his friend so far, as to be instrumental in giving him the opportunity to come to her Bed-side when she lay alone, as it was usual with her to do; The Chambermaid believing that she should not anger her Mistress, and oblige her friend, and being willing to further and not hinder any sport, was not long e're she gave our Lover his desir'd satisfaction; for she bringing him to the Chamber when her Mistress was in Bed, there left him. He who was not ignorant how to deal with a Lady soon over-rul'd her, and she seeing it was to no purpose to resist, with a kinde of willing unwillingness permitted him to come to Bed to her; what they did you may judge by the event, for in convenient time she discovered her self to be with Childe, she frequently lying with her husband also; and being with child her husband was an overjoy'd man, and did hope, that as he concluded himself able to get a Childe, so he might in time be restored to his former health: Our Lovers though they often met, yet they used all wariness and circumspection, and our Gallant to take off the opinion of his still courting his old Mistress, began a Courtship with a new one, or at lest pretended so to do, and thus the time was spent till such time as her time came to be delivered of a Childe, which proving to be a brave lusty boy, gave great joy to all parties, especially to the supposed Father, who was much joyed that he had so hopeful an Heir to enjoy his Estate, and his Wife being again strong, and having layn in her full time, he again accompanied her; but in a short time after he piqu'd off, and as he had deceived his wife in his life time, so now in his death he cheated the very worms, for they expecting a full body found nothing but a meer Skelleton to feed on, you may be sure our Lover was joyful enough at the so long wished for, and now happy News of the death of his Rival, neither was his Wife much discontented, although by her outward deportment she made the world believe that she was a most disconsolate widow, and she was so reserv'd that for some time she kept her Chamber, and much longer kept within doors, not visiting any body, nor permitting any body to visit her but her Parents, and those who were nearest related to her Husband. However, she and her intended Husband held a Correspondency, but it was but with Letters, which were interchanged by her Chambermaids assistance; In time all these Mourning Solemnities were over, and she appear'd abroad again as resplendent as the Sun, and the fame of her plentiful Estate, great vertu, and charming beauty, drew to her many Adorers, whose business was Sirreverence, Love; she who was resolved what Instrument she would play on, and what Pipe should make her musick for the future, gave them all the hearing, but was absolute in her answers.

Her Parents seeing she had so many Suiters, desired her to make choice of one of them, and again engage her self in a matrimonial Life, she replied, that in time she might again be perswaded to do so, but when ever she gave her consent to alter her condition, she intended to be more curious than she had been, and to have more freedom in her choice; They replyed, that indeed they had in a manner impos'd the former March upon her, which had been fortunate enough, but however, when she had a mind to alter her condition, she should have all possible freedom in her Choice. She being thus left to her own dispose, in short time permitted her old Sweet-heart to make one in the number of her Suiters, what he wanted of Means to carry on his busienss the more splendidly withal, we supplied him, so that for Gallantry and good Mien, he outdid all her other Suiters, and being confident of Success in his Undertaking, he baffl'd them, all who were a Company of whining obsequious Lovers, so that at his appearance in full lustre, they like stars at the Day and Suns approach, shrink back and disappear'd, leaving him to Rule, and Reign Soveraign in that heart where he already had full possession, and now she being absolutely at her own dispose, she told the world that she thought she was oblig'd to reward his great Constancy, by permitting him to be what he had so long desired to be, her Husband; and therefore he was married to her; and now both their joys were compleated, and they both thought themselves fully recompenced for their many troubles and so long stay, especially when they considered how much better their condition was now than it would have been had they been married at such time as they both at first desired; for although he concluded that his Predecessor had possest her, yet it had cost him dear, for his Estate was all given in exchange, and now lawfully invested and settled on a Child, who although he and all the world believed to be his lawful Heir, yet they knew the contrary, & our Lover was Father of a Son and Heir the first day of his marriage, and which was the greatest Paradox, such a Child as he did conclude was of his own begetting; and now she did not (I suppose) repent of the councel he had given her, and which they together had put in practice? to the great satisfaction of them both; These Considerations (said Mistress Dorothy) I think were very considerable, and conduced much to their satisfaction, and now, said she, I think you can expect no more relations of this nature, for in this condition I left our two Lovers, and here I shall put an end to all that I know of his Adventures.

I seeing that Mistress Dorothy had done, and finding that she had fully finished her discourse, told her that I wish'd all true Lovers no worse a conclusion of their amours than these two had; but, continued I, it was well that they mannag'd their affairs so privatly that neither her Parents nor frinds had any suspition of him, for if they had, it might have fallen out worse with them, and this our recital puts me in mind of a small story that I have heard, which in regard it somwhat resembles yours I shall presently relate to you, and thus it was:

A young woman had (by the over-ruling and perswasion of friends) permitted her self to be married to an old man, who lived some years with her but she was soon weary of his company, and being free in her converse and carriage, gave opportunity to several young men to court her, her Husband saw it, but without any possibility of redressing the same, for he being old and feeble, and she young, obstinate, and wilful, did rule the Roast her self, and so disturb'd and vex'd him, that it shortned his days, when he was on his Death-Bed, and believed he should die, he like a good Christian was resolv'd to be in Charity with all the world, but his wife had so cross'd and affronted him, that she who of all the world he should be most in charity with, was most out of his books, and he was resolv'd to put her out of his Will too as much as he could, she believing that he would die indeed, and that it might be to her prejudice if he should die in the mind he was then in, was resolved if possible to put him into a better mind, and therefore she attended, pleased, and humored him, in every thing that it was possible to do; he seeing so great a change in her carriage, changed his mind also, and being now very weak, and just at deaths door, made his Will, and in good and orderly manner named her his loving Wife, and making her full and sole Executrix of that his last Will and Testament, gave her all he had, and now having seal'd his Will and given it into her custody, he would also give her his blessing, and told he was in full and absolute Charity with her and all the world, onely he desired one request of her, which he praid her to grant him, and not be angry at the proposition he should make her; she promis'd him attention and obedience, and thereupon he thus began:

Although you have of late given me some Testimonies of your love and obedience, and thereby won me to a good opinion of you, yet know, till that of late I had an ill opinion of you, and that not without cause, especially to the outward appearance, and indeed I must needs tell you, I was troubled with that disease which the world calls jealousie, but your late good carriage hath cur'd me of that distemper, and now I am dying I give you free leave to marry, and conjure you so to do with all decent conveniency; but above all things, I onely beg you not to be marrid to F. K. who of all your Company-keepers I had most suspition of, and therefore have most cause to hate.

This is that which I desire of you, and which I hope you will as you have promis'd me obey me in: The good woman seeing that her husband had finished his discourse, thus replied:

Truly Husband you may, and I hope will rest satisfied that I will obey you, when I shall tell you that I must not, will not, nor cannot be married to the man you name; for I'le assure you I am so far from doing so, that I am already determined to have another, and indeed, to satisfie you farther, I'le assure you the Contract for marriage is already drawn and passed between us, and nothing is wanting to finish it but your death, and the Ceremony of the Church. The poor old man hearing her give this answer, was so troubled at the thought of it, that being almost dead already, this quite kill'd him, whereby she had the means to put her Design in execution.

Thus, said I, have I finished my discourse, and as it much resembles your Story, so I believe your Lady was of the same mind as my woman, although she had so much discretion as to conceal it from all the world; but, continued I, your story is very pleasant, it being such an expedient to get an Heir and thereby get an Estate, as I have not heard of, and indeed the young Gentleman did deserve to have somewhat considerable for the use of his Lady; for I conclude her his ever since he had took the pains to court her and gain her affections, and promise of marriage; and although his Estate was not equal to hers, yet together their Estates would have been so considerable as might have afforded them a sufficient maintenance; but now it fell out better, she not being much damag'd, he much improv'd by travel, and their Estate now being a very plentiful one. Indeed I wonder why friends should hinder marriages when both parties are agreed, onely for the deserts of a little money, when as let them do what they can if either party match otherwise, their lives are commonly miserable, and although Matches are upon that account somtimes obstructed, yet commonly in the end they take effect.

CHAP. VI.

 

A Widow that was wealthy resolv'd to marry none but such an one which should enlarge her Estate, under that Pretence she was cunningly out-witted by one dropping a Letter; she is married to one not worth a groat, instead of a Joynture he gives her a Copy of Verses. He afterwards grows jealous, the sad effects of Jealousie, and a strange Story thereupon.

I having finished my discourse, it was well approved of, but said Mistress Dorothy, oftentimes the one party being covetous, and marrying onely out of hopes of a good estate, is out-witted and deceived by the other, and since, said she, we are entred upon the discourse of marriage, I will give you an account of one who was over-reached in that manner.

There lived a woman of my acquaintance who having been once married, and her Husband dead, was resolved to have an other, but withal, she was resolv'd that she would have such an one that should enlarge her Estate, which although it was considerable enough, yet she intended now to have such a Husband as should bring an Estate equal to, if not exceeding her own. Her former marriage had been when she was very young, and then it was for love, and that Love being dead, she intended to bury all fond love with him, because she had bin so easily courted, and won by her first husband, several others put in to be her second; but, as she said, having tryed the effects of Love, and finding that it had been likely to have made her miserable, she purpos'd to have no more of that, but intendded now to have such a man as she did not hate; one accomplish'd, and likely enough to do a womans business, but all this would not do unless he were rich; and being thus resolv'd, she turned off all Suiters that came to her, that she did not know were thus accomplished.

At length came a Gentleman that was a very likely man to the outward appearance, and he professed he had a hundred pounds per annum, and it may be more: Those friends that introduced him into her acquaintance, told her that he was a plain upright honest man, and that whatever he said or should say of himself she might believe, and withal that they knew that his Estate was worth three hundred pounds per annum, he having spoken so modestly of himself a a hundred pounds per annum and his and her friends telling her of three hundred per annum; she knew not what to think of it, or which to believe, sometimes she was of the opinion that he might have the three hundred pounds per annum her friends talked of, and onely out of modesty, and to try her temper, spake but of one hundred pounds himself, because he intended after marriage to be the better esteem'd by her, because things proved better than she expected; and at other times she did not know but that he might be an Imposter, and it may be had little or nothing, and that all this was but a Trick to catch and overreach her, wherefore she was resolv'd to proceed with all caution.

He being desirous to put an end to his court ship and finish all by matrimony, asked her when the day should be wherein they should be joyned? she told him that she was not in haste, and that it was fit before marriage, to make some provision and settlement of Estate, as that afterwards there might not be any cause to repent, and therefore if he would say, what part of his Estate he would settle and ensure on her, and conclude that, the marriage might soon be concluded on.

To this he presently answered, that his Estate was a hundred pounds per annum, and somewhat more, now he would put her to her choice, whether she would have the hundred pound per annum settled on her, or leave the business to his own free will and appointment, telling her that he questioned not but she would deserve well of him, and that then it would be to her advantage not to have any certain Settlement.

To this proposition she knew not what to answer, but being covetous told him that she would for two or three days consider of it; he was content, and so they parted. The next day he took occasion to visit her again, and pulling somewhat hastily out of his pocket, he dropt a Letter which he did not miss, but going out of the Room left the Letter behind him. This Lady seeing it fall took it up, and seeing that by the Superscription it was directed to him, and being very desirous to know somewhat of his affairs, she was resolved to keep and peruse it; wherefore he soon after leaving the house, and she being retired, and having opened the Letter found these Lines:

Sir,

After due Respects to you, these are to acquaint you that although we have had the misfortune of your long absence, yet your affairs have hitherto fallen out fortunate enough, and are likely still to continue so, for of the last half years Rent due to you, I have gathered in two hundred pounds, which you know is the whole within a small matter, and there is three hundred pounds more fallen upon you by an accident which you may receive at your first arrival; for S. L. your old Tenant in your Copy-hold and his Wife are both dead, and their Son hath offered two hundred pounds for a new Lease, renewed in his and his brothers Names, besides an addition of twenty pounds per annum Rent more than formerly, and a hundred pounds more is offered by Goodman L. to put in his Sons Life into his Lease, so that I am much importuned to dispatch them, If you please to perform these two Leases (as in my opinion you may) they are so desirous of their Bargains that they will pay down the money to me, and take my promise that you will at your return seal to them, so that if you please to accept it I will send up the whole sum, five hundred pounds together, it being more safe and profitable for you to dispose it at London than here.

And now having done with your business, I beseech you pardon me, if I desire to know whether, and how you proceed in your Love Sute, for the Widow R. who you had some affection for her, is desirous that you would renew your Suit, and she is in some better capacity as to her Estate than formerly, for an Unkle lately dead, hath left her five hundred pounds; but Sir, I knowing that you do not esteem money equal to affection must be silent, and leave all to your own discretion; Thus desiring your Worships Pardon for this boldness, I rest

Your Worships Servant
and Steward,
L. T.

Our covetous Widow having greedily read over this Letter, was hugely pleas'd with the Contents thereof, and hugg'd her self for the good Fortune she was likely to have; for now she resolved that her Sweet-heart had near five hundred pound per annum, besides five hundred pounds ready mony in his Purse that she knew of, but the latter end of the Letter did not at all please her, wherein the Steward was so bold as to put him in minde of his old Love, and she was very fearful that the five hundred pounds additional Estate that she had, might incline him to renew his Suit; wherefore all these matters being considered, she was resolv'd to delay or protract the business no longer, but upon his next desires of Marriage, to accept of it, and that upon his own termes.

Wherefore two or three days being past over, wherein she had promised to consider of it, and he again desiring her Answer, and withall telling her that his occasions called him into the Countrey, she therefore tells him that she was so far perswaded of his Love and Honesty, that she was ready to be married to him so soon as he pleased, and that without any terms, leaving it to his own disposing, not doubting but as she had generously cast herself upon him, so that he would be as generous in his providence for her; he replyed that she should command all he had, and then by her consent ordering the Wedding Solemnities, they were within three days married. She hoping that by her freeness with him, he would be civil to her, gave him the Keys, and thereby the possession of all her money, Plate, and Writings, and he taking so much as he had present occasion for, returned the Keys to her again.

And thus they strived to out-do one another in kindness; but some weeks being past, and he not all speaking of his Countrey-affairs, she put him in mind of them, telling him that it would be convenient for him to visit his house in the Countrey, and that if he pleas'd she would accompany him in the Countrey, and withal, adding that she hoped he would be as good as his word, and make her a considerable Joynture; he reply'd that she had so well pleas'd him, that he would make her a Joynture of all he had, she believing that it was as considerable as the Letter express'd, gave him many thanks; and thus he fed her with good words, but still delay'd his Journey, and put her off with some odd pretence or other, but she at last becoming importunate with him for her Joynture, he told her that he was so wel skill'd in Law, that he would draw a Draught of it himself, and give it her to advise with her friends, she was now well enough content, onely she still put him in mind of the Draught of the Joynture; he told her he was about it, and had almost finish'd it, and one day told her that now it was done, and that he also had occasion to take a journey for three days, and in that time she might confer with her friends about the Draught he would leave her; she was very well content, and he taking money in his Pocket went his journey; when she taking the Paper he had left and believing it to be the draught of her Joynture, went to some of her nearest Relations to confer with, and have their Advice about it, but they opening the Paper, in stead of the expected draught of a Joynture, they found these Lines:



   Grave plodding Sirs, my Wife I have sent to you,
That you'l advise her what she'd best to do;
She's rich, and so am I, beyond controul;
For I have Lordships boundless as my soul;
She's vastly rich, what need she covet more?
Yet gaining me, she's richer than before;
I have no Lands, confest, but I have wit,
Make her such Joynture as you please of it;
I have good parts too, that she knows full well,
And may confess, if not asham'd to tell;
Both which she shall command, nor will I be
Unkinde to her that was thus kinde to me;
What would she more? having enough of Pelf,
Sh' hath all she could have, since she hath my self:
Dear Second-self, be not displeas'd, that I
Have fram'd a Letter to gain thee thereby;
Who would not rack his wits to spring a Myne
So rich, all others poor compar'd to thine;
Now here the Powers above henceforth decree,
That none may work within that Myne but me.

The Gentleman returning, found his wife in so pleasant and debonair a temper, that he thought she had complotted with her friends some satisfactory revenge, that might be equivalent to the stratagems he had laid to gain a wealthy Widdow, with the subtle pretences of a fair promising Fortune. But having discourst her to every thing, and penetrating the very recesses of her heart, found she was more satisfied with his wit in this cunning contrivance, than if he had the real enjoyment of what he so largely pretended; and now she hugg'd his soul with much more ardency than her feeble hands could do his body: great was the satisfaction on both sides, but much greater was the Gentlewomans, finding an Husband answerable to her desires, beyond all expectations; neither was the Gentleman backward in making ample acknowledgements how happy he was in that his propitious stars had by their clear shining influence lighted him to so fair a wife, with so large a Fortune: The friends and relations of this joyful Bride were all very well contented in being out-witted by a Gentleman every way compleat both as to soul and body, each wishing it had been their lucky hap to have a had a Son in Law of so worthy a person.

For a considerable time they nothing but treated one another, which was done on all sides with so much gallantry and generous freedome, as sufficiently demonstrated the greatness of the respects and friendship they had for one another. The new-married couple were like a pair of Turtles, always wooing and courting each other, with so much ardency of affection, that they were look'd upon by all, as the best Pattern of a kinde Husband and a loving Wife. After this manner they lived some years, and obtained the fruit of all their enjoyments, by having several children, Males and Females: But as it is usually and phylosophically said, that what is violent is seldome permanent, so it prov'd true in our two Lovers; for though there was no similitude in the loves of others to theirs, yet length of time made their loves so dissimular to each other by an unhappy accident that we have scarcely heard of an Example of the like kind, which produced a more dismal and lamentable Tragedy.

This Gentlewoman as I have informed you, was an extraordinary Beauty, very handsome, and of a winning carriage, very familiar where she observed any thing of merit or desert; onely to be blamed for a small matter of Avarice, which had ever ran in the veins of her Ancestors; but principally to be admired for her modest deportment and chaste disposition. In her minority when the sweet Rose-bud, her virginity, was scarce blown, she had a vast quantity of Suiters, which daily sollicited her Parents to give their consent that they might address themselves to the Daughter by the way of Marriage, some of the more wealthy sort were permitted, others for want of a Fortune suitable to hers were denied, but she for her part lookt upon them all with so much indifferency, that she gave none an occasion to boast of her extraordinary favours.

Whilst her amorous Visitants were despairing by reason of her extream coldness, a young and sprightly Gentleman hearing of her incomparable beauty and rare accomplishments, crowded in among the rest of her Adorers, and at first sight concluded what he saw, to out-strip what ever he had taken upon report, and fel passionately in love with her, and having not other Rhetorique but his eyes, he employed them so effectually, that they spake more in his behalf than if he had had the advantage of a score of eloquent tongues to have pleaded his Cause; the warming Rayes of these two little glittering Orbs thaw'd her affection with as much facility as the melting Sun dissolves an hoary frost crisping the pearly-dew'd grass in a May-morning. Thus at the first interview there was a reciprocal return of each others affections, but though there was a suitableness in their wills, yet there was a desparity in their Fortunes, which caused her friends to be utterly against any overture that should be made as to a Match with this young Gentleman and their Daughter, and left there should be any private conference between them which might more strongly cement their affections, they resolved to prevent all things of that nature by sending her to a place not onely remote, but altogether unknown to any but themselves.

What an heart-breaking this was to our two Lovers I will give you leave to imagine; for a time it was almost intollerable, but Absence the best remedy for a Love-sick heart cured her in some part; and hearing that her friend's discontent had forced him to travel with a resolution never to return, (she being call'd home to her fathers house) was induced to permit the visits of her Amorists as before; and now seeing her self incapable of holding out longer, by reason of the perswasion of her Parents, and incessant importunities of her Lover, yields to him, and so they were married, with whom she lived very happily; but her Husband dying, she lived a while a widow, in hope to hear from her first Lover, which ever makes the deepest impression on the amorous heart, but being assur'd by several credible persons (as she thought) that he was dead, she bathing his memory with some tears, resolved when opportunity should fair and advantagiously offer it self, she would throw off her Widow-hood and re-assume her former condition. To this purpose several address'd themselves to her, but she being a politick and crafty woman, gave ear to them all, but gave credit to none. And indeed for my part I cannot but applaud her prudence in not too hastily marrying after the decease of her Husband, if it were for nothing else than the daily treates a woman shall meet withal in that condition, if she be handsome; if wealthy, how will the Presents come tumbling hourly into her Lap? Not a Beauty-hunter in the Town but will endeavor to have a flurt at the Widow, and not a younger brother or decay'd Gallant but will try to sawder up his crack'd Fortunes though he spend his whole Revenue on her, that is, either what he hath about him, or what he can borrow upon a thousand Oaths and Protestations. But to return where I left off, this Widow admitted several to caress her, whom she entertained handsomely befitting their Quality; among the rest this last (Indigent) Gentleman accosted her, the greatness of whose affections with the pretence of a great Estate, carried her from all the rest; happily they lived some considerable time, and longer they might have so done, had not this Gentlewomans first Lover returned, who did so upon no other account than that he heard his dearly beloved Mistress was in a condition to receive him into her bosom, and so make him amends for all the sorrow and trouble he had sustained for her sake; but finding his expectations frustrated, he behaved himself like a man distracted, especially when he had heard from her own mouth, had he been present, of all the men in the world she would have chosen him for her Husband. This endeared expression as it would at another time have transported him into an Extasie of Joy, so now it wrought contrary effects upon him, for to think by his rash and inconsiderate absenting himself he had lost that inestimate prize he might have enjoy'd by waiting near it with patience. His madness encreas'd to that height he took his Bed, and fell into a desperate Feaver; his Mistress hearing in what a sad condition this poor Gentleman lay for her sake, could do no less than give him a visit to comfort him, and reduce him if it were possible to his former understanding, for he raved night and day, continually calling on her name, exclaiming against her cruelly, and I know not what. The ravings of this Gentleman were bruised every where some pitying him, whilst they cunningly pryed into the cause of his distemper, and by reason he was a person well known to most of the inhabitants, old stories were rapt up, and all concluded the deplorableness of his present state proceeded from this Gentlewoman.

Her Husband was not so deaf, but that he heard all these mutterings, which extreamly disturb'd his spirits, insomuch that he now began to question in his thoughts his Wifes fidelity to him, but exprest not his resentments in the least, resolving to see what the event of these things would be. The Gentlewoman on the other side fearing lest she should be the death of him she once loved equally with her own life, resolved to restore him if she could, and to that intent she judg'd the best expedient was to remove his despair, by giving him some hopes that he had a share in that heart still which was once totally his; which she did with so much assurance (though with no such intent) that he had not so lost his senses but that he understood what she said, and thereupon beg'd a repetition of those words again, which she did so sweetly and with so much seeming reality, that this remedy had like to have proved his absolute ruine, for at this he cryed out as loud as his weakned spirits would give leave, O let me die! since none more happy now than I, and so fell into a swound; there were none in the Room but these two, but the Gentlewoman with her shrieks soon fill'd the Room, who assisted all to recal him, with much difficulty they did, and now their greatest care was to get him to sleep; he was now easily perswaded to any thing, to all their admirations, and so reposing himself that night, there was by the next morning wrought so wonderful a change that all his friends were amazed. This miraculous recovery plainly appeared to proceed from his Doctress, for after this there was not a visit that she gave him which did not sensibly amend him.

At length he was restored to his perfect health, and now did this Gentlewomans Husband fall sick of a worse distemper, the Plague of Jealousie, and raved as the other had done, but in a worse manner; for now he did not stick to call that wife (which he knew with all her friends to be honest and virtuous) Whore, Strumpet, &c. It was to no purpose for her to justifie her innocency, for he was so strongly possest with an opinion of her dishonesty, that he would not hear the least Plea in her behalf, but so enrag'd he was that nothing proceeded out of his mouth but vows to be revenged on his Wife and loose Associate; several attempts he made on them both, but ineffectual; insomuch that it was now high time for their friends to advise them not to come near him till some means might be used to convince him of his misbelief, and to lay open the danger that would ensue should he persist in this misgrounded opinion.

This councel was well received and followed, this jealous Gentleman being thus deserted, and the Subjects of his revenge removed from him, ran up and down like a mad-man, but seeing at last this could not be the way to effect his purpose, desisted from raving and seemed to hearken to the councel of his friends who advised by all means to harbour no such unworthy thought of his wife, pawning their souls she was as honest as their own, with many more perswasions, which he hearkened to with great attention seemingly, and to be short, acknowledg'd his error, and if that they would be the Instruments of bringing his wife to him again, he would on his Knees beg her forgiveness, and the Gentleman whom he had wrong'd; they making him bind this promise with many Vows and Protestations, assured him they would use their utmost indeavor; in short time they prevailed with the Gentlewoman to return upon the Conditions aforesaid.

Coming home, this hypocritical jealous Devil prepared a sumptuous Dinner, and invited his supposed Rival, with many friends to rejoyce with him in this happy reconciliation between him and his wife, in the mean time he applied himself to an Apothecary, an intimate friend of his, whom he thought wicked enough for his purpose, and one that he might confidently trust, telling him that his wife was a Whore, and that he knew the Rogue her lascivious Paramour, that he was a dead man if he was not revenged on them both by death, and for that purpose he must help him to a strong dose of poyson that shall dispatch them instantly; the Apothecary after some pawses, with the proviso of never being discovered, consented, and gave him something in a paper, which with much joy he received, and carried home with all expedition. By this time dinner was ready & serv'd up, the Guests seated, and he bidding them welcome with a cheerful countenance, declar'd to the whole company that he had highly wrong'd his wife, and that Gentleman pointing to him, that if they would forgive him he would make them amends; they readily condescended to what he had propounded, and now nothing but a general jollity was observed through out the Table, the Glasses went about merrily, there being all sorts of Wine to excess; and now let me bring this Feast to its Catastrophe. The Cloth being removed, and all prepared and ready for a Grace-cup, this graceless man, the Master of the Feast, call'd for a Bottle of wine, in which before he had conveyed what he received from the Apothecary, and filling out thereof in a large Glass up to the brimm, drank an Health to his wife, wishing they might never have more difference here, his wife and all the company gladly accepted the motion; he having drank it off filled to his wife, which she drank off to her former Lover, he receives it, and drank, as the other had done, to the next; having so done, the Husband started up, saying, It was enough, it should go no further; every one admired at the humour, which he perceiving, said, you must think I love my wife and her friend better than so, then that they should drink what you do, they deserve to have something therein better than ordinary to end all differences on Earth and make them Saints in Heaven, I love them not so ill as not to bear them company; Come, come to your Prayers for a prosperous journey, our time is but short. Lord! what a confusion was all the room in when they heard him speak after this manner, knowing now that he had perfected his revenge by poysoning them and himself too. Several were dispatcht instantly for Antidote to expel the poyson, whilst the poor Gentlewoman and her friend were on their knees offering up their last petitions: having said some prayers, Husband said she, I forgive you with all my Soul, but know, I ever lov'd you too well to defile your Bed, and as these are (as I suppose) the last words I shall ever speak to you more, I am innocent as to what you unjustly suspect me with; and let me, said her friend, on the dying words of a sinful man protest, I never defiled your Bed, and do believe her from all others as chaste as the chastest Vestal-virgin: Whilst they were thus confessing, the Apothecary came in just as the Husband had kneeled to ask Heaven forgiveness for this tripple murder. The Apothecary seeing them all in this posture, he broke out into a very extravagant laughter, which made the Husband, turn about his head, who seeing the Apothecary, cryed out, Seize that Villain, it is he that hath help'd me to do this damn'd Act, it is he that hath furnished me with those hellish materials to murder murder the innocent; by this time conceit had so wrought on the other two, that by their faces it was high time the Apothecary saw to unriddle the whole matter; wherefore desiring them to rise, Gentlemen, said he, the Master of this house upon a discontent grounded on jealousie, the particulars whereof you all know, came to me, and desired assistance in his revenge by poyson, had I deny'd him he would have gone to some else who might have embraced his wicked design, but to the intent I might hinder all further attempts, I gave him nothing, but what was harmless, and assure your selvs there is no danger in what you have drank, my life for yours; this strangely amazed them all, the Gentlewoman was demanded how she felt herself, she acknowledged to have no sense of alteration, and so did the other; the Husband seeing how fouly his Plot was discovered, and being asham'd to breathe after so much intentional guilt, drew a Dagger and attempted to stabb himself three or four times, but was still prevented; being at last somewhat pacified by his good wife, he retired, and having for two years sequestred himself from the enjoyments of the world, exercising himself in all things that became a penitent man, he vowed a weekly pennance during his life, and so was throwly reconciled to his wife, and the moderate enjoyments of this life.

And thus Mistress Dorothy finished all her stories acquainting us further, that amongst these many Amorists that came to see her, her friend the Scrivener, became intimately acquainted with her, and frequenting her company often, gained so great an Interest in her, that he being bound for the East-Indies, perswaded her to go with him in mans apparel, which she did, and there found some of her old acquaintance, and one that had been too familiar with her before in England. Every one had now given an account of the most considerable passages of their lives, excepting onely the Captain, who being sollicited thereunto, freely condescended to anatomize his life without mincing the least matterial truth, and thus in the Chapters following gives you the whole relation.

CHAP. VII.

 

The Sea-Captain gives an account of his illegitimate Birth at Bristol, was left on a Stall, and maintained by the Parish. He is deluded by a Bawd, and perswaded to steal; he is taken ipso facto, committed, arraigned and condemned to be transported; the Bawd is Carted.

It's now high time for me to acknowledge the great Satisfaction I received in your relating so many witty and pleasant Passages, that have occurr'd in your lives time hitherto; nor can I (without injuring your ingenuity) but commend your generous freedom in discoursing every Remarque, and not omitting any observable, though you knew it could not choose but cut the very throat of your dying Reputations. And that I may not seem to fall short of that frankness, and gallantry, I will not so much as seem tainted of the late unpardonable sin of these Times; Men making it generally their business to censure the Lives and Actions of others, without being in the least sensible of their own, or amending those they cannot hide. Wherefore I shall not abate my self an Ace, nor shall I let a Vice escape (whereof I am, and have been plentifully stored) without letting you take notice of its shape, complexion, and constitution: Nor shall I hide this truth from you, that I came into the world by stealth; being begot in Hugger-mugger. As my Parents begot me rashly, so they left me carelesly to the world, not doubting, but that which was gotten with so much heat, would live in spight of Fate. They were the more resolute in this cruel resolution of leaving me on a Stall, having generally observed the good Fortune that generally attends Bastards. I was not long left on the Stall, (as my Nurse hath several times since informed me,) but that Hunger awakening me, I piped so shrilly, (and so unexpectedly lowd from a Child so young,) that I soon penetrated the ears of a great many pitiful minded persons that were passing by that way: but the greatest number were of the Female Sex. The Maids, you may think had fine tittering sport; whilst I poor Babby cryed for I knew not what, and well it had been if I never had known what it was to shed a Tear. At length a notable old Woman of the vulgar sort, pressing into the Crowd; Stand aside (quoth she) ye giggleting Huzzies; get ye home to your Mistreßes service; there is some of ye, for all your laughing now I warrant ye, will be putting finger in eye before these nine Months, upon the like account, and so steps to me; What (said she) the Child must not starve, though it be a By-blow; its none of the poor infants fault; and so opening her Breast, she conducted her Nipple to my mouth, which immediately quieted my bawling. Various were the Discourses and Suppositions of the People, whose Child I should be, every one giving in his verdict according to his imagination, or the suspitions he had entertained of such, and such; Some that were more curious and inquisitive than the rest, strictly survey'd me all over, and having commended me for a lusty Child (as generally such are, who are begotten by the heat of Blood and Strength, grown to full perfection) but likewise praised the proportion and promising features of my tender countenance. At last, a Paper some espyed pinn'd to my breast, which my Nurse preserving, since I was of years, she gave them me, and I committed them to my memory, which were these:



You see I'm pretty, and am cleanly clad;
Shew then more pity, than my Mother had.
But four days since, that I received breath;
O do not let me cry my self to death.
Take home your Child, this Parish is my Mother;
And what's distressed in it is my Brother.
Keep me a while, for in some time don't fear,
I'le fully recompence your cost and care.

Whilst these were reading by a fellow, that thought himself not meanly so, because he could read written hand; there was a general silence, but no sooner had he ended, but there arose a greater tattling noise in the Crowd than twenty Bake-houses, or a Fair in a Countrey town could produce. Saith one; I warrant the Father on't was no Fool, for doubtlesly he wrote the Verses: but the Mother was without question a cruel Quean, that could find in her heart to let so lovely a Babe to perish by extremity of cold; for it was then about January. The Constable was straight way informed of this accident, who readily came, and caused me to be carryed to a Church-wardens: the Woman that was so tender hearted, as to suckle me, was glad of the imployment, hoping she might be the Woman elected to be my Nurse; which fell out accordingly, she lately loosing her own Child of a quarter old. The good Woman was overjoyed that she had got another to supply the place of her own; especially since she suspected that her age would not permit her to be assisting in the getting of another, and therefore was the more tender of me; Her care and fondness made me grow a pace, so that in 12 Months I was called her chopping Boy. To pass over that age, wherein the understanding is in Embrio, and Reason and Experience have not yet consulted about the governing of the grand concerns of Mans future being; I shall only give you an account of my Life from the Ninth Year of my Age, till this present.

My Nurse could not choose, when I was but Seven years old, but take notice of many things I committed, for which she severely chastis'd me, endeavouring to stop me in my first proceedings, knowing my pretty Rogueries had their rise from an inclination to all manner of Vice. Above all things I loved all sorts of strong Liquors, not that any thing accounted pleasurable, could go amiss with me; for how could it otherwise be, since my Parents, (as I have been informed) studyed only how to enjoy their Heaven here, by enjoying what was most agreeable to sence; and therefore I could not be unlike them, who was the absolute extract of no common delights. I say I loved in an extraordinary measure, whatsoever was strong; yet being too young, and so could not drink for the sake of good company, I would greedily drink for its own sake, and that I might procure my satisfaction that way, I found frequent opportunities to steal small parcels out of my Nurses Purse when she was asleep, and then pretending that she sent me for Ale, would drink it by the way; Any small trivial thing, as a Knife, &c. in any House wherever I came, I instantly seiz'd them as my proper Goods and Chattels, and converted them to the use aforesaid: I had a very good convenience of a Bawdy-house not above a Musquet shot from our House; the well disposed Matron thereof, would not only receive what I brought, but would give me half as much Ale as it was worth, besides her blessing, (curse be upon it, I never thriv'd since I had it,) the breath of her best wishes being enough to blast the most promising hopes, that ever yet aspiring Youth entertain'd within his breast; Nay, she told me I was her white Boy, instructed and encouraged me in the Art of Theevery, telling me the welcomer I was, the oftner I came. By this means I began to know what it was to keep company, her Wenches being my initiators, by whose help and my forward endeavours, I commenced Master of Art, before I could sum up Twelve Years; I soon became Professor of that deep Mystery, and could when occasion serv'd not, swear mouthingly, (which others call gracefully) look impudently, talk impertinently, or impruden ly, drink profoundly, and smoak everlastingly. I had got a trick to laugh at every thing, because I would not be accounted morose, or phlegmatick; The melancholy Man, is a thing by it self, differing from the whole Creation; in which every individual species loves either an intercourse in converse, or amicable Society. That humour certainly was spawned by the Devil, if it be true (as it is affirmed) that all Vices take their original from Melancholy: on the contrary, what fault can he commit, whilst he is laughing, and merry, that deserves so much as the knitting of a Brow. Not that I will excuse my self; for my laughter was immoderate, and unseasonable, things so offensively ridiculous to any wise Man, (as I have considered since) that it were better to be destitute of a Mouth, than that distorted Mouth should abuse the grateful off-spring of a cheerful heart.

I could not have gone to a fitter School than this, to learn Impudence, Lies, Oaths, Drunkenness, with all other Vices and Debaucheries, which commonly flow from such like Nurseries for Hell, Factors for the Devil. My frequent ramblings after this manner abroad, and in my returns, my jolly temper and jocular humour at home, made my Nurse begin to suspect me, calling me to an account where I had been, with whom, and whether I had not tippled. I was grown so stout a Drunkard in so short a time, that my tongue and feet made a firm contract never to betray me, and therefore to all her demands I had excuses at my fingers ends, However she could not but sensibly find a decrease in her small stock; her chief livelihood depending on the sale of Apples, Nuts, Ginger-bread, Eggs, and the like, and thought all her endeavours were blasted from above: I saw her much troubled and grieved, and I could not but be a little troubled, that I should be the destruction of my Preserver; but as seldom any such perplexing thoughts came into my heads, so I was ever cautious how I entertained such disquietness. But Heaven decreed, that I should not be the ruine of this Woman, and therefore permitted me to go no longer on in my Roguery with her. For a little distance off our House, I stept into a lower room in an Ale-house, and seeing no body, I imagined the coast was clear. If I had seen any, I should have askt some blind question or other; for I was sufficiently well acquainted, not only in that Parish, but through all Bristol; that was the place of my Nativity: I say, seeing none, I catcht up a Beaker, thinking it was Silver, (but its new scouring deceived me) and clapt it into my Breeches, and so marcht off, as I thought undiscovered, endeavouring with what speed I could to repair to my old Rendezvouz. But he that observed me to steal the Beaker, did now dog me to the Bawdy-house house, which I had no sooner entred, but I was groaping in my Breeches for my purchace, which when I had pull'd out, I tendred to my Landlady, desiring her to be civil to me; ne're question (quoth the fellow behind my back, that had watcht, and now catcht me) you shall have as much civility as a whip will bestow on your back besides what kindness lies in my power to do you. Hearing him say so, I would have run a race with him, but I found him indisposed, being out of breath before, and ther fore held me fast, desiring one of those that were crowding about the dore to hear what was the matter, to go and fetch a Constable, which one more officious Rascal than the rest, presently did; and the Constable taking me in custody, and about to carry me before the Justice, (cryed) Hold good Mr. Constable, I pray Sir let me desire you to put your self to the trouble to view the House farther; which by this grave Matrons leave, I question not we shall find well furnished with variety of Goods, which by her constant care, and the indefatigable pains of others she hath got together. This fellow, with the Constable, and my own roguish Urchinship had no sooner entred the Kitchen, but he espyed a Plate with the Letters of his name on't, which I had stoln about a fortnight before from him: which taking up in his hands, sharply demanded of the good old Gentlewoman, how long it had been a sojourner in her house, and by what means it came to stray so far from home? This antiquated piece of more than common impudence, did not stick to tell him that she bought two dozen of them of such a one, that lately broke up House keeping. Where are they, quoth he? before you on the shelf quoth she, with as much ignorance, as confidence. Upon this, he made his eys the diligent and speedy Surveyors of that shelf on which the Plates stood, and of two dozen he found not two marked with one and the same Letters. Why thou illiterate fool (said he) I took thee till now to be an old crafty-Devil-ridden Hag; the very Marks (which are all several) do sufficiently evidence that each had his Master, before thou wert Mistress of the four and twenty. Hereupon he made a strict Survey over the other Utensils of the Kitchen, and found most of them of the like nature. Some trivials whereof he knew to be his own, as Spooms; Porringers, Sawcers, and other small things of light carriage, and easie conveyance, all which he seized, and committed them to the custody of the Constable. Then turning to me, Come my little-pretty-rascally thief (quoth he) as you have shewn your self ingenious, so ingeniously confess what things you have stoln from time to time, either from me, or my Neighbourhood, and in so doing I will stand your friend, and endeavour to mitigate the severity of your ensuing punishment.

I harkned diligently to his flattering words; (for so I found them) but knew not what to resolve on, thinking on the old Proverb, Confess and be hang'd, made me as silent, as a Turkish Mute, or one born dumb. Which he perceiving and finding me timerous; come, confess like a good Boy saith he, otherwise it shall be the worse for you. Hearing him say so, I trembling looking stedfastly on him, to my great sorrow could read in his angry countenance the manner and severity of my punishment. Certainly had he at the time been arraigned upon suspition of Murder, the Judge needed no other evidence than that of his monstrously cruel looks. Never did Keeper of Newgate look half so frightingly on a re-taken Fellon, having broken Prison, than he on me, and therefore without dallying with him further, I fell on my knees, and with as many salt tears, as sweet words begging his pardon, I informed him of every particular I could remember that I had stoln from him; assuring him further, that it was not my own natural disposition, but the instigation of that old Beldame (pointing to the Bawd) that induced me thereunto; encouraging me daily in this pilfering way, by receiving what I brought her, and making me drunk for it; and if I had not brought her a purchase once in two days, I had her menaces and threats; besides her upbriding me with sloath and idleness, and calling me her good for nought. Mrs. Bawd had not the patience to hold her tongue longer, but too hastily endeavouring to excuse her self, by accusing me, her lying pretences had like to have choaked her by disgorging them too fast, so that she was forced to pawse a while till she had recovered a little breath, and wiped away the froth she had so plentifully foamed at mouth; presently after she opened in this manner; Why, you young Rogue? how dare you thus abuse an honest Woman (though I say it) of my Calling? I am old enough to be your Grandmother, and therefore you might have reverenced my Age. Besides, I have paid Scot and Lot these two and thirty years where I live, and as well, or better acquainted with the Justice, than most of the Parish are with his Clerk; Sirrah, it is well known what I am; a Mother of many Children in an honest calling, and never left them to be kept by the Parish, as your Mother did you, you Whores-egg. I have had Knights and gallant Gentlemen in my House early and late, and none of them ever yet could say black was mine eye. I have had as fine handsom Gentlewomen (and young too) as any in this City, that would not have dined with their friend without me, I thank them; and as they were my Lodgers, they had so great a respect for me, that they would not stir abroad, or hardly do any thing without my approbation, and such was their esteem of me, that I am venerably called Mother by them, and others to this day.

Well Mother, (then said my Securer) let us go to this Justice you are so well acquainted with; I doubt me, that knowledge you have of him will do you no great good; it would have been more your advantage, if you had less known him. And so without further delay he charging the Constable with us, and the Constable charging others to aid and assist him, my Grandame and I were both conveyed before the Justice, where, upon examination I confessed all, not mincing the truth in the least, laying all the fault on the Bawd, who endeavoured to excuse her self, but to no purpose; for the Justice told her he know her but too well, and was glad of this opportunity to put a period to her Bawdy reign; as I had confest my self guilty of those petty thefts, so I had my mittimus immediately drawn, and so had she hers too, and the more deservedly, by how much the Receiver is worse than the Thief. We wanted not attendance (you may imagine) to the Goal: the whole Street, and the next to that being raised in an instant to see a spectacle so preposterously disagreeable. In the first place a thing so antiquated and old, that there was not one on Earth living that knew her age, neither could she tell her self, having outlived the knowledge thereof, and yet instead of minding her winding sheet, she would have stoln her own Coffin rather than lawfully buy it, had she any way of a cleanly conveyance; nay, would have cheated the Sexton of a Burying-place, if her nails, which were long enough, had they been as strong, could dig her own Grave. In the next place, a sight to be lamented, one so young, that he had no sooner skipt out of his Hanging-sleeves, but was gotten into the Highway, or ready road to be hang'd.

The Crowd, and throng of People was so great about us, that the Constable made what speed he could to Shop us So that we were forced to march apace, a thing that would vex a Horse to be on a Hand-Gallop to his own throat cutting. The Boys and Girls swarm'd about me, some calling me singly, Thief; others, theeving Bastard; which unpleasant sounds did so often beat against the Drum of my ear, that angers Heroick passion was quickly alarm'd, and did soon put it self into a posture of revenge. Though I knew my self basely born, yet I found my blood had the same heat and height of that of Princes; and though I was too sensible of the Guilt of their aspersions, yet my lofty Spirit would not brook to be upbraided therewith: wherefore, if any with his reproaches came so near, as that I could reach him with my Fist, I would not there fail to ring him a Peal. I had dasht so many in the Face, eyes, and Mouth, or wherever I could best strike, that I engaged a young Army of enemies against me, who in Front, and Rear, nay, on each wing too, did so desperately assault me, that had I had the hands of a Score of Briariuses, they would have been too few, if no stronger than mine. The Constable at last was forc't to be my Champion, who so bravely defended me, as not to deprive me of my offending my numorous Foes.

You must not imagine, that our good Matron went along more quietly than my self, who, (whilst I was so disadvantagiously fighting my way through) was pelted on all sides with rotten Apples, Addle Egs, Dirt, or whatever was filthy or loathsom; so that by that time we got to the Goal, she was now fitter for a Pest-house than a Prison, having all those stinking ingredients about her, that are the common procurers of an universal Contagion. She no sooner entred the Gate, but the Prisoners cryed out, fough, what have you brought hither? Do you think Want and Vermin will not kill us fast enough, but you must thus poyson us? Such Criminals as were so skilful as to know their own Fortunes, were in hopes that the stench of this Woman would save the Judge the trouble of Condemning; and the Sheriff the labour of hanging them. Others who knew they should not die that Sessions of a suffocating Quinsy, laid presently violent hands on her, and dragging her into the Yard, there Pumpt her sweet and clean. The next work was to Hand-cuff us, and clap Bolts betwen our Legs. My Godfathers (the Church-wardens of the Parish) hearing of their graceless God childs confinement, came to visit me, who were worse than ever Job's comforters were, for they only upbraided him of those secret Sins which had thus publickly disgraced him; but these told me shame was too mild a punishment, and hanging was too good for me. In short, that should be my end, and wisht I had saved the Parish some charges, by being hanged some years before. My Grandame hearing what a sad Sentence my Ghostly-Fathers pronounced against me, and that I must inevitably go to Pot, concluded she should be Roast-meat to bear me company at old Nicks table; for the People by her Diabolical looks, were more than half persuaded she could not be but a Witch at least.

Sessions approaching, I often meditated on the word, Hanging ; but the word struck so heavie on my imagination, that it rather benummed then any ways quickened the sence of punishment Death I lookt on then with the ignorant and misjudging eyes of a childish understanding, fancying it was but the meer privation of Life, and there is an end, and not the separation of Soul and Body for a while, till they be by the Infinity rejoin'd, never to be separated again, either in endless Joys, or Eternal Woes. But as often as I thought I should be soundly whipt, or but have as many single stripes, for every several Roguery I committed, so often would the tears trickle from my eyes, whilst my heart was ready to burst, not having the benefit to discharge its grief.

Whilst I was ruminating with my self, what would become of me, my good Nurse came to me, at whose sight I was ready to dissolve into Tears, neither was she much behind hand with me, so that it was very difficult to judge who wept fastest. But at length recovering her self, she charg'd me home with all my miscarriages, and thinking she had made me fully sensible of them (which she thought she had done by my pitiful looks) she then instructed me, how I should behave my self for the future, if I escaped this bout, and finally counselling me that I should freely confess my faults to the Judge, and then most penitently (with all submissiveness) beg his Honour not only to pardon, but pity the tenderness of my Age. I con'd my Lesson so well, that three days after, when I was carried to the Sessions-House amongst the rest of the Prisoners, and being called to the Bar, I was bid hold up my Hand, and answer to Guilty or not Guilty, to what I stood Indicted? I answered Guilty (submissa voce) with so low a voice and so much seeming shamefacedness, that the Judge I perceived took special notice of my seeming modest behaviour. He thereupon askt me how old I was? My Lord (said I) my Nurse informs me I am twelve years old. A prime youngster indeed, replyed my Lord; but why said you your Nurse inform'd you, and not your Mother? May it please your Honour, (said I) I was never so happie, either to know what she was, or where she is. At this Reply of mine, I observed his Lordship more amazed, than he was before surprized, to see so young a Felon appear before him; his wonder was so great, that he only caused me to be set aside, and so proceeded to the Trial of others. I was so kind to my Granney, that I impeacht her not, and indeed her mittimus ran (by the connivance of her old friend the Justice, who had been a good Milch Cow to him, but could now keep her off no longer) for only keeping a House of Debauchery, and rank Bawdry. At the last day of the Sessions I was sentenced to be Transported, and the Venerable Gentlewoman (out of pure love to see me aboard) had the favour to ride (by reason of her great age) in a certain thing, vulgarly called a Tumbril, being Carted through the Town, attended according to custom, with the usual Ceremonies that are duly performed on such solemn occasions.

CHAP. VIII.

 

Prisons, marr and not mend, giving growth to the seeds of Roguery. He is releast out of Goal, and sent aboard a Virginia man, in order to his transportation; he makes his escape on shore in the Cock-boat from King road, and travails on foot to Barnstable; he is entertained by an Hostler, what a notorious trick he serves his Master; and how again his Master was not ably revenged of him.

In that short time of my confinement, I had made a considerable addition to my stock of Boldness and Roguery, and was competently furnished with subtilty and craft to manage my roguish design, Nothing troubled me more, than that I had not my liberty to put in practice what I thought I very well understood. Thus you see a Prison most commonly marrs, but seldom mends any. Whilst I was wishing for, and studying how I might procure my enlargement, a Merchant came into the Prison, and enquired for the Lad which was sentenced to be Transported; I (being overjoyed with the hopes of getting loose) prevented his further enquiry by telling him, I was the person. Hereupon he fixt his eyes upon me, which seem'd well pleased at the spackness of my youth, and pleasantly askt me; whether if I were not forc'd, I had any desire to travail: I told him I fancied it above any thing, and were I left to my liberty, would make it my choice above all things. Since that you are so willing (said he,) you shall go for Virginia; and that I may be sure of you, stay here till I am ready to go, in the mean time I shall provide you necessaries, and when the time comes, pay your Fees. I presently framed a sad countenance, and begged of him for the sake of all that was Sacred, to take we with him, and I would serve him in any condition he pleased; and that if he did mistrust me, if he pleased, I would go instantly aboard. Being half perswaded I would perform what I promised, and taking compassion of my pitiful moan, called the Keeper to him, and paying my Fees, instantly sees me out before him; he would not absolutely trust me yet, and therefore bad me go straight forward till he countermanded me, which was but once in all the way, he drove me to his own house. This Gentleman was one of the most considerable Merchants in Bristol, who trading much to Virginia, questioned not but to make a considerable Return of me, being a lustie young comly Lad. By reason our Ship lay by the Key side, a lusty Vessel of three hundred Tuns, carrying twentie four Guns, he would not trust me on Board, fearing least the nearness of the Vessels lying a shore, I should have the better opportunity of making my escape: Wherefore he kept me at home with eyes enough over me; and that I might not be altogether idle, he displaced two or three old Servants of his out of their wearisome imployments, Dog-turn-Spits, I mean (a usual custom through the whole Citie) that I might take their turn. Now that my Master might not think I needed to be forced upon business, mornings and afternoons, (wherein I had some cooling hours) I voluntarily imployed in learning to Write, the sight whereof gave my Master a wonderful satisfaction; in so much, that he bought me a new Canvas Suit, with Shooes, Stockins, Hat, and two new Shirts, but yet would not suffer me to stir abroad.

But now our Ship being rigg'd, victualed, and all things ready for a Voyage, fell down into King-road, and I in a Boat the next day sent me aboard of her. There being now no hopes left for escaping, I endeavoured to please my self, by promising my thoughts things impossible, or very improbable when I Landed in Virginia. But that night there arose a great storm, the wind blowing hard at South-east, which made a very turbulent Sea, which so frightned me, that I fully resolved if I escaped this, I would never be drowned in another like it. We rode with but one Ankor, which coming home we were forc'd to drop our Shete Ankor, which held us, and so rid it out. The next Morning several of our Men went ashore to the Crock & Pill, there to refresh themselves. I would have gone with them, but could not be admitted; wherefore I resolved ere it was long to go ashore by my self. In the day time it was impossible to attempt any such enterprise; wherefore I judged the night must assist me, or nothing would; the Wind being not fair, nor likely to be, one day most of our men took. Boat, and went up to Bristol, where taking their leaves of their friends, came down to us as merry as Hawks, those that had been aboard all day, upon the return of the Ships Crew, went ashore to the Pill, where in less time, they got as considerable a Dose as the most head strong of any of the rest had done. Night coming on, Sleep needed no other Harbinger to put them to rest, than their own ebriety, which soon had lull'd four parts in five into a senseless security, snoring so lowd, that I wonder they did not wake with their own noise. Now was the time I imagined, that Providence had alotted for my escape, and so seeing the Decks in a manner clear, I got into the Steerage, designing to look for the Cock-Boat, which used to be a Stearn of us, but looking out of the Port-hole I saw two lustie fellows (that were Passengers) in the Boat, and were just putting off from the Ship side. I spake softly to them, and threatned to discover them by crying out, if they would not take me in: they seeing a necessity for so doing, consented to my proposition, and in I got; they plyed the Oars so well, that we puickly got ashore, landing at Portshead , for the Bell would have been a means to discover us; and there turning our Boat a Drift, away we travailed by Land most part of that night; in the morning by enquiry, we found our selves not far from Mineard: we left the Town on our right hand, not daring to venture through it, and kept streight on till we came within six miles of Barnstable; there we lay in a Barn that night; my two other Comerades had a mind to go to Plimouth, but I refused to go with them, having been all suspected the day before, begging on the Road; I thoughts my self more secure to be alone, imagining few would suspect a Lad so young, and therefore resolved for Barnstable. Whither being come, I addressed my self to an Inn, where begging a while, the Hostler chanc'd to take notice of me, and seeing me a notable well trussed Lad, askt me, whether I would assist him in rubbing down Horse-heels? Yes (said I) with all my heart; he never questioned my fidelity, nor what friends I had, for he thought it would be to little purpose for so small a youngster to ride away with a Horse, riding to Water, &c. The frequent falls I had (being a bad Horseman) had like to have put me by my new occupation; for I was half of the opinion it was equally as dangerous to ride a Horse-back, as to ride at Ankor: and to lift me clear out of the Saddle, my Worshipful Master did take much notice of my frequent miscarriages, and fearing least by my unskilful riding, or some other accident I should have my neck broken one time or other, and so be forced to keep me, he was resolved to turn me off; that which confirmed him in his resolution, was a scurvy trick I served him, which vvas intended for the Tapster, vvhich is as follovveth.

The Tapster of our Inn, vvhen he found me any time at leisure, vvould commonly imploy me in attending his Guests, dravving Drink, and so forrh; I seldom went down into the Cellar, but I would be sure to drench my throat; for I thought I had wronged my Mouth, if I had missed one time; by which means he could not but catch me sometimes; at first he took little notice, but finding me to make it a common practice, every time he so caught me, he made my ears pay for the injuries my mouth did him; but one time above the rest, he did beat me in the Cellar so unmercifully with a Hoop-stick, that after it I thought I needed at least twenty of them to keep my ribs together: the continual pain this beating put me to, did also rack my inventions in studying how I might be revenged of him; I could find no other way but this; observing the Tapster to be very laxative, I went and consulted the House of Office, and found the middle Board to be suitable and serviceable to my purpose; for by loosing of but two or three Nails, I could make it turn topsy turvy, like a Trencher with a Tub of water to catch Mice withall; but first I plumm'd the depth of the Vault, and found it in Golden Oar not above a yard in depth; finding that I should not hazzard his life by this enterprise, and having a brave opportunity to drink that night, (there being great store of Guests in our House) I swallowed so much for joy that my project would take, that my eyes were miskie: however all being abed, and I the last up, resolved to be the first in the morning to prevent others from dropping into the Pitfall; knowing well from former experience that our loose Tapster would be the early, and first handseller of this design. At length growing exceeding drowsie, I fell a sleep under the Manger, a wonder to me since, that the Horses by treading on me, had not spoiled my face, or some other part: about four of the Clock in the Morning I was awakened out of my sleep, by an exceeding Griping of my Guts, and found a great proness to go to Stool; the fumes that ascended from the excess of Drinking Ale the night past, had not only intoxicated my Brain, but for that time so depraved my memory, that I remembred not any thing of the Trip I had laid for the Tapster; wherefore to obey Natures commands, I ran hastily into the House of Office, with my Breeches in my hands, and treading on the Board, it slipt up, and in I dropt.

I thought once to have cried out for help, but hang it thought I, it is better punish my nose a while, than loose my revenge: wherefore placing the Board (which I could easily reach) even again, I crept up into the corner of the Vault. I waited a great while, but none came, till my patience was almost worn out; but at last I heard the tread of some ones footing, I supposing it to be the Tapsters, was even over-joyed; But it was my Master, stepping boldly into the House of Office, and treading on the same Boar, slip int as I had done before; whereupon catching him about the neck (for I was almost up to the Chin) which had like to have frightned him more than his fall; welcom said I, the welcomest man living; you might have come sooner, I have waited here an hour at least; he thinking the Devil had been in the Vault (for he could not conjecture any mortal could endure to be there so long) cri'd out as lowd as his Wind-pipe (which was Organ-Tenor size) would permit; which redoubling, he at length drew help unto him, they sent him the end of a Broom-stick (preserving their hands for a sweeter imployment) by the help of which he got out; but no sooner was he on his Feet, but without so much as thanking them, cries out, the Devil is in the Vault, and so ran distracted by into the House; The People hearing him say so, ran after him, leaving me to shift for my self. There might I have staid long enough, had not my own hands helpt me out. Being in the House he smelt stronger than twenty of Tom—Ponds put all together, and so great was his fright, that that added somewhat to the strong scent, if any addition could be made. He was perswaded first to wash, and change his habit, before they asked any questions concerning this strangely surprizing adventure, for it was impossible to entertain any discourse with him. In the mean time I having got out, ran immediately into the Horse-pond, and there rowled and washt my self all over, and coming out, finding that would not absolutely do, I uncloathed my self, taking my Doublet first, and washing that throughly, and so my Breeches, with my Shirt, and every thing else about me washed severally and distinctly from those fetid impurities, they had contracted in the House of Office.

By this time my Master the Hostler had shifted himself, and abundance of the Neighbours were gathered about him, to be informed how this disaster befell him. Why surely Sirs (said he) it must be the Devil, and no body else, that owed me a shame, and hath now paid me home; at that very instant I came into the room where my Master was, who seeing me in that manner dropping, and looking as bad, as one that had been drawn through a Common-shore; How now , (said he) whence comest thou? What hast thou been doing? Master, said I, (if I mistake not) you were talking just now of the Devil owing you a shame, pray tell me what it was, and how he paid it you home, and I shall acquaint you with his late too much familiarity with me. Hereupon my Master repeated what he had related before briefly to me, telling me, that going to the House of Office this morning early, he had no sooner stept within the dores, but the Devil, (for he was sure on't he said) unjoynted a Board, and pull'd him into the Vault, and then jear'd him by welcoming him into that stinking place. O Master (said I) as yon were served, so was me your Boy (though somewhat differing in manner) and I think by the same spightful Devil: For coming out of the Stable by 4 in the Morning, I was catcht up, and thrown upon our great Dung-mixen, there was I rowled to and fro for half an hour, and at last rowled into our Horse-pond; out of which with much difficulty I scrabbled out with my life; you see what a pickle I was in. This I feigned, that he might not think me guilty of that Plott I had laid for another, but was every whit as glad, it did light on him, for his beating me so often unmercifully.

Large was the talk of this strange accident, most not knowing what to think on't. He for his part a while did foolishly believe that some infernal Spirit owing him some ill will, had thus abused him, till by some apparent Symptomes he had discovered, he concluded me the Author. To the intent he might the more fully revenge himself on me, he took no notice of what had passed, neither did he express any dissatisfaction towards me. One night about 11 and 12 a clock, when the whole Family were most of them in Bed, he merily askt me whether I had any Money; yes said I, here is two pence. Come on said he, I will wager with thee a Pot, I will jump further at twice, than thou shalt do at five times; done said I; where shall the place be? Why here said he in this very Entry where we are. He begun first, and made three large jumps which reacht as far as the Threshold of the outer dore. Having so done, I followed him, and at the fourth, I toucht the Threshold with my Toes; and then strtining my self to shew my nimbleness and activity, I leaped a great way into the Street; he perceiving that, shut the dore against me, locking it, he spake through the Key-hole, saying, Good night, look your lodging else where, your Lordship is too nimble for me. My intreaties were many and urgent to let me in, but I found him so inexorable, that had I supplicated his Horses, I might have found as much favour, as from this Esquire of the Manger.

CHAP. IX.

 

He relates what extremities he was put to, for want of Food and Lodging. His Lodging in a Mill, lying in the Hopper, discovers a very pleasant passage between the Miller and his Wench; and by a strange accident got a very good Supper that night; with many other remarkable adventures.

I was not so much troubled that by being shut out of dores I was destitute of a lodging, as to think how basely I was turn'd off by this Yeoman of the Hempen Collar. Neither did I trouble my self at the thoughts of lying underneath a Stall, (for I had too lately been intimately acquainted with lying on the boards) but my mind was somewhat perplext, when I thought of meeting the Constable and his Watch, I fear'd no lodging so much as one of their providing. To avoid which, I crept under a Stall, and slept there that night. The Sun had lookt into our Hemisphere with half an eye, when I awaked, and glad I was I had so much light to see which way I pleased to steer my Course. I directed my Feet toward the Key, where I knew I should find diversity of Objects to please my roving mind. I walkt there so long, till my stomack grew enraged to that height that nothing could passify it but a good Breakfast, which I knew not how to obtain, or give it the least satisfaction, but by begging. Whilst I was thus plotting how to support Life, a Man in good habit steps a shore from one of the Ships which lay by the Key, and walking a turn or two with me, askt me who I belonged to, if to none, whether I wanted a Service? To whom I replyed, I was an Orphan and Master-less, and that I should be glad to hear of a good Service, and be thankful to him that should help me to one. That I will said he, if thou wilt Sail with me to the Barbadoes, thou shalt fare as I do; and since thou art a well favoured Lad, I will have a care of thee as of my own Son (it may be so, if he loved him no worse than my Father loved me) thou shalt do well ne're question. He askt me whether I would eat, or drink. I told him I was both hungry and thirsty; come aboard with me (said he) and thou shalt be satisfyed in both. I thought it no prudence, but rather very hazardous to go aboard then, and therefore beg'd his excuse; he perceived my fearfulness, insisted on that no farther, and so carried me to a Cooks Shop, where he called plentifully for Meat and Drink; and that I might not want good sawce to my meat, he recounted to me the pleasures of going to Sea, what idle lives they lived, doing nothing but imploying their thoughts in what past-time they shall next divert themselves in; Sometimes playing at Hob, (a usual Game amongst Sea men in a calm) afterwards at Cards, Dice, Tables, Talking, Walking, Smoaking, Drinking, or Fishing; and then speaking of Barbadoes, and other Islands they usually toucht upon, he told nothing but wonders of them. Though I had not the Faith to believe all he said, yet I could not but be much pleased at the Relation. He spent some hours with me to possess me with a belief of the verity of what he said; and when he had exprest himself so largely that he could not utter more without repetition, he demanded whether I would resolve to go with him; I promised faithfully I would, but desired of him respit till the next day; thinking I intended thereby to evade him, he would not consent to it, alledging I was too young to catch old Birds with chaff; this was but a trick of mine to fill my belly, and that this was not the first time I had served others so; however I will pay my share of the reckoning, and so farewell and be hang'd; there being sixteen pence to pay, he threw down his eight pence. As he was marching down the stairs, I called after him, begging him to stay, he returning, I vowed I would come to him the next day, and be absolute at his devotion; I backt this Vow with many Oaths and Protestations, the breaking of which I valued as little as Lovers do theirs in an amorous heat, if necessity should force me to it. Well said he, I will believe the for once, but if thou dost cheat me, I shall find you some time or other, and then—

Glad I was to part with him, resolving, if I could make any other shift, I would not go with him. Night drew on without any other success that day; and now wondring to and fro in the dark not knowing where to go, I arrived at the foot of Welcomb-Bridge; finding my self so near the Towns end, I resolved to get shelter under some Hay-mow, or creep into some Pig-stie. As I walkt along I saw a glimmering light, and approaching it, found it in a Mill; I lookt in, but saw no body, whereupon I boldly entred (it being late) and sat down a while by the Hopper, to the intent if any should have taken notice of my entring the Mill, I might there in view have been excused my self. Now coming, and finding my self alone, I got up into the Hopper (being a very large one) and there lay close. I had not been long there, before I heard the Miller come into the Milk, and discoursed with another, which I judged Female by her voice: not long after came his Boy with some Liquor, of what sort I know not, about to depart, the Miller charged him to bring the Capon as soon as it was ready.

By their discourse I soon perceived the intent of that their nocturnal meeting; for though the Mill stood still, the Miller was resolved to grind that night. Various was their pretty little amorous tittle tattle; but growing weary of talking, there was a cessation, and then I could hear a bustling and a puffing, as if the Miller had overcharg'd his arms by lifting too many sacks of corn at once. After this, no noise at all; then began a fresh Dialogue, but somewhat better qualified than the first; Their discourse was full of kissing Parenthesises, sometimes one with another: their controversie at length grew hot, and the arguments of these two Disputants were so powerful on each side, that they had not a word to say. In the mean time in came the Boy with the Capon, setting it down, but where is the Bottle (Sirrah) said the Miller? The Winer said the Boy won't let it go without leaving Money for it beside the Sack; whereupon giving him Mony, charg'd him to make haste, which he did accordingly. The Miller and the Wench fell to it lustily. I could hear by the swift motion of their chops, not letting three bits pass their greedy throats, without six Gulps of Wine to wash them down. I wisht them both in the Mill Dam, so that I could have had some of their good cheer. At last the Miller being indifferently satisfyed, and impatient to taste of other Flesh, than that of a Fowl, said, Come my dear, we will set aside what remains till anon, which will taste better then, than now; I did wish they would have set it up in the Hopper; After this they fell to their former dalliances; and all was hush again. I reaching up my head by degrees, resolving to see; and leaning too far over the Hopper to make the full discovery, I and the Hopper came tumbling over and over down upon the Miller, and with my foot had so dab'd him in the Pole, that half stund, up he got with his Wench, and both ran as if the Devil had been in the pursuit of them; not knowing (when they had recovered the fright) how soon they would return, I resolved not to be idle, but snatching up the remains of the Capon and the Bottle I ran too, but it was a contrary way; bing at a good distance, and having recovered the Fields, I got under a Hedge, where I made a shift to fill my Belly, though I could not see what I did eat; my Wine served to keep me warm in my new cold lodging; but I found it had not cured my bruised Bones, which troubled me so much, I cursed my curiosity, as well as the Miller, who was the cause of all this mischief, wishing I had his Stones to peck for him.

My happiness rose with the Sun, whose glorious beams having put to flight the gloomy shades of night, had also in part routed those cares and fears which had surrounded me on every side. And now I began to remember my promise to go for Barbadoes; which (after I had seriously considered with my self) concluded it to be the best expedient I could propound to my self for a future livelihood. But thought I, it would not be amiss to carry some Venture along with me; but since I had neither Parents, Friends, Credit, nor Money, there was no way to procure any such thing, but by my wits, which I was resolved to stretch, or stretch for it; I walkt the streets almost one whole day, but could not contrive a way to insinuate my self into any Shop, without much suspition, being so small an Urchin; But rather than spend a day thus fruitlessly, I purposed to hazzard all; and therefore coming by a Shooe-makers Shop, I boldly stept in, and as confidently askt the Master thereof, whether he knew my Master; who is thy Master, quoth the Shooe-maker? Capt.— said I; he replyed, he knew him not. You may then said I, for he pointed to this Shop even now, bidding me stay till he came, he intends to buy a parcel of Shooes of you, being bound to Sea in a long Voyage. The Man hearing me tell this formal and plausible tale, desired me to sit down, telling me I was heartily welcom; I told him I had been sitting all day, and therefore desired him to give me the liberty of walking in his Shop, with all my heart, said he; and with all my Soul too, thought I; for by this means I had the opportunity of Surveying the Shop, and seeing what things my hands might lay hold on with least difficulty and hazard. He not suspecting me in the least, followed what he was before about at his Cutting-board, and his back being towards me, I secured a pair of Childrens Shooes, which lay among many more carelesly on a Seat, which I securing, I stept to the Man at his Cutting-Board; sometimes looking on his work, and then stared him in the face, as if I would have given him caution by my eyes to have a care, lest I should steal the noble Trade of the Gentle-craft from him; then standing at the dore, as if I lookt every moment for my Masters coming; and then retreating inwards, would wonder, or rather mutter to my self, that if he should stay so long. Walking a turn or two backwards and forwards, I espyed a pair, that I verily believed would fit me, my heart leapt within me at the discovery, and my Fingers never left itching till I pincht them by the ears, who made no outcry, when I conveyed them into my Breeches; fearing to stay longer, (knowing too well the danger if I were taken) I came to the Master of the Shop with my Hat in my hand, telling him I would go look my Master, assuring him I should find him either at the Rose, or Kings-head Tavern, and as soon as I found him would return again instantly. Do so, my pretty Lad, quoth he, do so; which I did with such an over eager haste, that had he observed me, I might have been betrayed thereby. Overjoyed with this success I fully purposed to be couragious for the future, and bannish every base thought, that might lessen or abate a dangerous or desperate resolution. To increase my purchase, I walkt into another Street remote from that I committed my first Theft, where I buisily imploid my eyes in the search of any advantage, though ne're so inconsiderable; they quickly found out what my thoughts aimed at, and therefore drew near my intended Prey, a Hosiers Shop, the Master whereof was buisily imployed in making up of Stockins of all sorts into Papers, marking thereon the Prizes. A Loggerheaded Fellow, taller by the Head than my self, had little to do, it seems then to gape and stare on the Gentleman that was at work,; he lolling over the Stall, I came and lean'd by him, where we both gazed so long, till we had seen him make up several Parcels.

I had a great mind to have some Stockins to my Shooes, if I knew how to get them. There was no thoughts of going in after the old obsolete way of nimming them, under the pretence of cheapning, for my Habit and Age would have been incongruous to that design; I had various Projects in my head, and I verily believ'd one would take, (since there was but one Man in the Shop) if I knew but which of them would prove most infallibly effectual; for I approved them all as very good. Seeing his work almost at an end, I thought it high time that mine should begin; wherefore this Lobcock (who lookt like one, who never was, nor ever would be good for any thing) I say, I propounded him as the fittest instrument I could use for my designed good. To commence this knavish stratagem, I pincht him gently by the Ear, which he feeling, grumbling like one suddainly awakt out of his sleep, asking me, what's the matter? Nothing said I, he lolling again after his afore accustomed humour, I twek't him again, at which he grew angry, and threatned to box me; I regarding his threats, no more than the humming of a Gnat, stuck a Pin to the head in his Breech; at which he caper'd like a dancing Horse, and ney'd so lowd, that I could hardly forbear laughing; but he soon made me more serious, by lending me such a cuff on the Ear, I thought he had struck my head off my sholders; I endeavoured to defend my self as well as I could, warding his blows, and now and then returning one, creeping as near the Shop dore as I could; the Master of the Shop perceiving my Antagonist was like to be too hard for me, left off Papering his Stockins, to part two so unequally matcht; that was my politie, that I might get him on my side; with much ado, by the help of my Shop-friend, I dis-ingaged my self from him, and seemingly much afraid, I ran violently into the Shop, pretending to fly from my furious adversary; and turning hastily about, I saw the Hosier was much concerned in keeping the Looby from running in upon me; all this while his back was towards me, which favoured my exploit so rarely well, I whipt up a Paper of six pair of Stockins, and sent them into my Breeches undiscovered, to keep company with the Shooes; having finished this work, I had so cunningly plotted, I called to the Hosier, Master, Master, said I, let the cowardly Lubber come, and let me see what he dare do; I commend thee little Boy said the Hosier, and so loosing him, he ran furiously upon me, I being less by much than he, dodg'd him, and so got clear out of the dore, the Hosier holding him in the Shop, till I had clearly escap'd him; The Hosier, (as I understood afterwards) presently missing his Stockins, overtakes this Boy, that made not half the haste that I did, to be far enough from the Shop, and dragging him back, charg'd him with stealing a Paper of Stockins: who stiffly denied it, as well he might. The other told him, that though he lookt like a simple ignorant Dolt-head, yet he had found him the cunningest Knave that ever he met with: These are new tricks indeed, spick and span new, piping hot. I have heard, when Knaves fall out, honest men come by their own; but I never heard, that when two such young Rogues fall out, honest men should loose their Goods. Sirrah not only produce the Stockins, you now have stoln, but those I have lately mist, and that presently; you are like to pay for all. A young Lad (one of my confederates afterwards) stood by, all the while, and told me, that his Gestures at that time out-did all the Changlings that ever had been before him; all that the Hosier could get out of him was, that the Boy he would have beaten, had them. This would not serve the turn, but caused the Constable to carry him before the Mayor, who hearing the whole story, wondred at the subtilty of the Plot, especially proceeding from such Green Heads (concluding us Partners) and that his Worship might hinder him from the like, or worse attempts, committed him to Bridewell, there to remain one whole Month, and thrice a week to be severely lasht. I was glad to hear of his confinement, being freed from the fear of meeting him in the street, neither durst I much ramble abroad, for fear of meeting the Hosier; wherefore I was resolved to make what hast I could to get me and my Cargo aboard: to the increasing whereof, I found the acquaintance I got among young Apprentices, with my skill in Span-Farthing and Chuck, to be very instrumental; For being buisie at Play, whilst their Masters were at Dinner or Breakfast, (which were my chief Market-times) I could with ease flip into the Shop, and so whatever came to my hands was lawful Prize. What I had gotten at Chuck, Span-Farthing, and such like Juvenile Games, I found sufficient to provide me sustenance for the day, and had spare hours enough to exercise my Art of Pilfring; what each days Theft had produced, I warily carried to my Magazine, a place that I had found out, secret and secure enough for that purpose viz. a ruinated old Castle, not far distant from the Town, rarely frequented by any. In the Wall whereof, I found a large hole, where I intomb'd my Goods, I, like a Cunny with her Stop of young Rabbets, never let it lie open, when I left it.

There was not a Day wherein I did not add to my Store; so that thriving thus in my Theeving, and Success attending all my Rogueries, I grew so impudently confident, that I thought almost I could have stoll'n a mans skin from him without discovery. But Danger and Destruction are seldom nearer, then when Security lies at the Dore. I had been in many Shops, but never in a Booksellers, wherefore I was resolved to make one trial there; and studying what Book to ask for, (being acquainted with very few) I pitcht upon an Accidence; but that I thought would not suit with my Canvas habit; I then thought a Spelling-Book would be much fitter; so advancing within the Shop Dores, I demanded of the Apprentice whether he had any such Book; he answered affirmatively. Pray let me see it, said I; whilst the young man was reaching down a Bundle of stitcht Books, in which it was tyed up; I had cleanlily convey'd a Book into my Breeches, (which proved to be a Practice of Piety,) the Apprentice not finding it in that Bundle, searcht in another, which gave my hands the liberty of seizing another Book, a piece of Divinity, as well digested, and as Practical as the former, called A Help to Devotion,; his Master which lay covert this while in a place called Catch Thief, hastily called his Man to him, to tell him what he had observed, and to let me alone till I was going away, and then to detain me; giving me in the mean time all the advantagious opportunities I could wish for; and to dissemble the matter the better, the Apprentice fumbld a pretty while before he could find it; by that time I had made other purchases, but one especially, the Title whereof you shall know instantly.

Having found the Book, he delivered it into my hands; I tumbling it over, askt the Price: Two Groats said he; I that had no mind to Buy it, was resolved to bid little enough; will you take Three Pence? The Rascal snatcht the Book out of my hands so furiously, I thought he had torn it to pieces; and then griping me fast by the Arm, (a Pox on him I did not like well his looks before) Sir, said he, Your Worship is very merrily disposed to offer me as little again as my commodity cost me. What Books else do you want? Or is your Honour of all sorts well stored? So clapping his hands on the knees of my Breeches, discovered what I had been doing. This disgracing Villain makes no more ado, but bawls out aloud, Master, Master, come quickly, I have caught the Book-worm that hath devoured so many Books of late. The Grave old Seignior upon this outcry quits his covert, and in a Spanish pace advanced towards me, accosting me with the worthy title of Honoured Sir, I am glad to see you, and am much troubled you should heretofore visit my Shop, and I abroad. I understand you are a great lover of Books; insomuch (they say) you are a little walking Library: be not offended Sir, if I take the boldness to look into the Title of one or two of them: so putting his hands into my Breeches, drew out a Practice of Piety: An excellent good Book. I protest (quoth he) you are to be commended for making election of such approvedly sound Divinity, to inform you of the true principles of Christianity. diving again; he brings out M Scudders Christians daily walk; Upon the sight thereof he seem'd to be ravisht, saying, surely this is a young Angel; and if he reads and practises such precious Books as these, he will be Canoniz'd for a Saint before his decease. And then applying himself to me; said, for certain your walk and the christians daily walk differ much, for his daily walks are in the rightous paths of honesty and Justice, but you walk daily up & down to see what Thefts, Cheats, and Rogueries you can perform. But let us make a further enquiry, and then he drew out a Help to Devotion, Do you see (said he) how Devout he is? how piously studious? not one scurrilous Pamphlet, or Play-book in all his Study; What shall we call him; Religious Votary. But indeed Sir, (said he) you are highly too blame, not to put your Books (having so many) into some method or order, and not let them lie thus confusedly without shelves.

He searcht a pretty while again before he could find any more, at last he found in a blind corner a Book, and bringing it to light, what should it be, but Mr. Smiths Great Assize; Look you here (said he) what I have found at last? before which at last you must appear, and there answer for all the Villanies you have committed, and then will these very Books (thou hast stoll'n) come in as evidences against thee; but hoping thou wilt escape there, they shall convict thee here; and so presently sent his Man for a Constable, who coming, we straight way marcht to the Mayors. As ill luck would have it, we were to pass by both the Hosiers Shop, and the Shooe-makers, who enquiring of the rabble what was the matter, were informed that they were carrying a young Thief to the Mayor, for stealing Books; the Shooe-maker was the first I past by, who seeing me, knew me presently, crying out, this is the young Rogue that stole my Shooes ; and not long after the Hosier was in the same tone; this is one of the Rascals that stole my Stockins, so joyning with the multitude, we soon arrived at the Mayor's house; entring which, the Mayor being acquainted with the matter, came down into a large Hall, where my Accusers each in his order declared my guilt, not omitting any circumstance that might aggravate my crimes. The Mayor much wondred that I should be so notoriously Roguish at those years, and askt, what I had to say for my self. May it please your Worship (quoth I, bowing so low that my nose e'ne toucht the Ground) I am Fatherless, and Moneyless, Friendless, and Helpless, and being ready to starve, I begged up and down the Town, but to very little purpose; for I beg'd so long without relief, that I knew not how to prolong my Life, without falling into these indirect courses. Had not the People been thus hard-hearted, I had not been so sharp witted. What did you do with the Shooes and stockins you stoll? I sold them (said I) for Bread and Beer. Where, said he? May it please your Worship, I am a stranger in this place, and if you would hang me, I know not where the house stands now. But what did you intend to do with these Books? And it please you Sir, I intended with all diligence to enquire whether any ship was going for Barbadoes, or any other English Plantation abroad, and I would go in her; being able to read a little, (and knowing my self to be a wicked Boy) I thought to carry them along with me, to the intent I might both mend my reading; and by my reading those good Books, endeavour to mend my life. All the standers by amazed to hear me speak after this manner; but more especially the Mayor, who protested, although he was near fourscore, he had not in all his whole life time observed the like President; and withall publickly confest he knew not what to do in this business: at length (after he had pawsed a while) said he; young man, you shall have your desire, you shall go to Barbadoes; here is a ship in the Harbour now ready, only expecting a wind; but that you may not forget your Native Countrey, this Town in particular; but more especially your matchless Rogueries, you shall be sharply whipt according to your deserts, and from the House of Correction immediately shipt away. You Gentlemen, that have been sufferers by this young Rogue, see that my sentence be punctually performed; and if you please to give your selves farther satisfaction, let each person offended, give the Offender three lashes a piece, above the general number appointed. I was straightways hurried from thence to the House of Correction; not only Guarded, but regarded by half the Town; my Accusers stuck to me to the very last, neither was there wanting those (to the number of a score) that verily believ'd I had abused them too (having lost several things lately) which accompanied me, hoping to give themselves some satisfaction, by having each of them a fling at my —. The illest lookt Rogue that ever dropt out of a Carts-arse at Tybourn, was superlatively handsom to this Baboon, bare-arst, Monkey-fac'd Jerker, that was to correct my Rogueship. His eyes were of two different colours, and of as different motions; they would turn from each sometimes to the utmost Angles of his face, as if they loathing each other, would not admit of that correspondency which good eys bless themselves withal: and then again furiously return, angerly endeavouring to pry into each others Cells, how they might extinguish the malignancie of that sight, each other hated for the Neighbour-hood. The Hair of his Head and Eye-brows hung over his For-head, and part of his Face, like that of an Iceland shock; Nature when she formed him was very frollicksom, and summon'd all the faculties of her Art to make a thing appear ridiculously monstrous; for the colour of his Face appear'd less lovely than a Molotto's ; the sides of his Cheeks like two pieces of Tann'd Hide flie-bitten; his Nose about an inch longer than Mother Shipton is pictured with, and somewhat more curved; his Mouth opened as wide as an Oligators; and his Teeth within that vast Concave, alike straggling; his Chin was like the Rump of a Goose. When he did sweat (as he did rarely otherwise) his neck lookt very like a Collar of Brawn, standing in its own Pickle; his Back was borrowed from a Cammel, his Belly from a Swine, his Legs from a Crane, much longer, though not quite so small; But I believe the Devil helpt him to Arms; for my Doublet and Shirt being stript over my ears, there was an Engine brought much like a Pillorie, in which there was three holes; the middle-most for my head, and one of each side for my hands: These principal Members of mine being there fixt, he takes up a Stick in his hand with five or six Cords at the end thereof, with which, at the first blow, I thought he had cut me in two, following that with three or four more, and in the end did so lay about him, that my very Accusers were forc'd to intreat him to give over; and when that would not do, they were compell'd to hold his hands. To conclude, he had so out-done their expectations, that they had now nothing else to do, but pity me; but this was not all: for my greatest affliction was yet behind. For lest those deep furrows the Rogue had plowed up on my back should fester or rankle, he had provided a Bason of Water and Salt to wash my wounds withal, which caused a pain intollerable. The severity of that punishment, hath ever since wrought so strongly on my imagination, that it makes me tremble, when I but cast my eye on any Book of the same Volume of a Practice of Piety.

Mr. Mayor had ordered, that the place of my torment, should be that of my rest too for that night, and in the mean time had sent for the Master of the Ship that was bound for Barbadoes, (having a part in her himself) and informed him, that he had a Purchase for him; a young Lad which he should take aboard, giving him an account how he came by him: it was all one to the Master, he cared not what they were, provided strong and healthy: the Sea and Gallows refuse none . The next morning I was convey'd aboard the Master knew me at first sight, and said to me, Did not I tell you, if you were worse than your promise, I should meet with you again? Truly Master (said I,) I did not forget what I promised, the occasion of so long absence, was only a desire I had to furnish my self with some commodities suitable to our Voyage; Yesterday I what coming in all haste to you, but that taking up some odd trifles by the way, staid me a while, but I'le assure you they cost me very dear. The damn'd Dog-whipper that was with me, did cut was I was about to say in two; resolving forsooth, to have his saying, telling the Master, he need not be asham'd to entertain me in his Ship, for to his knowledge I was no less then a Lace-Merchant, and had great quantitie about me. The Master dismissing the Fellow, giving him a Tester for his care of me, took me into his Custody; first carrying me into his Cabin to divertise himself with the relation of my Adventures; perceiving that the rehearsal of but two or three gave him infinite satisfaction; I assumed the boldness (being encouraged thereunto by his intreaty) to give him a plenary relation, not only of what had lately past since my arrival at Barnstable, but gave him a true and full account of all transactions before I left the famous City of Bristol, the place which I am engaged to for my Nativity.

CHAP. X.

 

He is shipt for a Plantation. He gives an account of the Passengers aboard, relating what kind of Cattle they were, and discovers from their own mouths, things very observable, in some of their Lives and Conversations.

The soarness of my flead back had so taken me off my mettle, that for three days, I did little more then eat and sleep; but hating thus to truant away my life without action or observation; I pull'd up a good heart, resolving to make the best of a bad Market. The first thing I had to do, was to get my Cargo aboard, not knowing how, or whom to trust. I saw there was no way more feisable than to acquaint our Master herewith: wherefore one morning, seeing him enter his Cabin alone, I followed him close at the heels, and falling presently on my knees, I begg'd him in the most commiserating terms my invention would afford, that he would not only be secret in what I should discover to him, but also be assistant to me. What, Sirrah (said he) have you some new piece of Roguery to act, and would you have me be your accomplice in it? Far be it from me Sir, said I; the Fact is already done, and by what means known; but the purchase none knows but my self where it is; wherefore all that I desire, is, that discovering the place, you will lend me your assistance to bring it hither; Sir, it is a just thing I beg of you; I have suffered the Law, and therefore it is mine; The very Turks condemn that as lawfull prize to the use of the theevish Slave, that can carry it off (though but over the Threshold) without being taken notice of; so I hope, as I have been cleanly in my conveyancee, so my punishment will authorise and clear the purchase. Hearing me plead so notably, and pittying my condition, told me that none should be concern'd in the securing of my dear bought goods but himself, and therefore commanded me to tell him where they we; which accordingly I did, and he thereupon immediately fetcht them, locking them up in his own custody, and promising me as soon as were Landed, restitution; and that you shall not suspect, Sirarh (said he) that I wil embezel any of them, you shall have an Inventory of them, which was thus: Imprimis, Six pair of Worsted Stockins, one pair of Childrens shooes, five clean Pipes, two blew leather Points, one pair of Boys shooes, two Brass Thimbles, one Alchymy spoon, one sawcer, one Knitting sheath and four Needle, with it, one old Womans pair of Eyes, (Spectacles I mean) which I stole from her Nose as she slept at her own dore, two Horn-books, the pillage of two Children going to school; besides, Giggs, Bouling-stones, Marbles, and Span-Counters innumerable .

As my Master was taking in writing an exact account of my Estate, I thought he would have crackt a Gut by his excessive laughter; but when that stitch-begetting-tickling humour would give him leave, he askt me, what I intended to do with these commodities when I Landed? or what Merchant I had advised withal in the proper transportation of these Goods? Or whether (said he, laughing lowdly) have you received any Letters of Advice from your Correspondence beyond Sea ? He was not so jocundly vain as I was really serious, which so increast his laughter, that I was forc'd to exercise a great deal of patience, before I could have liberty to return him suitable Answers to his Questions. At length without the least alteration of my countenance I told him, that what I had collected to my great cost and labour, I thought were as proper for transportation to that place we were bound to, as I had consulted the principal Merchants of Europe; for there is nothing said I in all my Cargo, but what is very useful, and that to all sorts of Persons, Sexes, or Ages. For my Stockins, Pipes, Points, &c. will very well accommodate either Male or Female; the Knitting-sheath and Thimbles, for the young Wenches; the Spectacles, I guess, may serve any old Woman from Threescore to an Hundred; the Horn-Books they may teach their Children by, to read; and let me alone with the Gigs, Bowling-stones and Counters to teach them to play, I mean Sir, not to play with them, but for them, and if I win (as I know I shall) their purchasing them again, shall be my daily gain.

He seemed very well pleased to hear me make such silly Propositions to my self for my future advantage; but I propounded to my self (privately) greater advantages, laid on a more solid Basis; and I did not fear my hopes would wither, or prove ineffectual, since as I plainly perceiv'd, I had my Masters love and countenance to cherish them. Being now dismist, I walkt to and fro the Ship, making my self acquainted with the Sea-men, my childishness conversing with their bruitishness, as cheerfully as possibly I could, who seemed well pleased with me, though seldom pleased with any thing else but store of strong liquors aboard, and a lusty plump Wench ashore. From aloft, I got between Decks, and there I found a many beastly fellow Travailers, Dog-like kennell'd, higglede pigglede altogether; I was heartily welcom'd in amongst them, but I was much troubled to see them so much more in years than my self, till looking narrowly about me, I espyed a young Girl of about sixteen, as I judged. O Sister quoth I, as confidently, I am glad to see you here, but much more glad that I shall have your company in this Voyage. The Baggage at first seemed somewhat sullen and coy, but in two or three days we grew so inwardly acquainted; that if I were aloft, a head, or abaft, or wheresoever, she would be at my elbow. One day asking her the cause of being a Shipboard; She told me, her Father and Mother dyed when she was but three years old, and left her to the tutelage of an Aunt, whose cruelty increast towards her, as she increast in years, debarring her even from that convenient sustenance that supports Life, so that she was forced to steal her Belly-timber, or be half-starved. This early-forward-fruit was well complexioned, and well featured, having a good natural Genius, attended with an extraordinary boldness, both which made me love this Cockatrice, Whirligig, what shall I call her? and became at last much delighted in her conversation. Singleing her out one day, we got upon the Poop together, where, after many childish flurtings, she perceiving how inquisitive and desirous I was to know what was the cause her Aunt was thus willing to part from her, by sending her to Barbadoes; she very briskly told me, she would give me the satisfaction required, and expecting he would have made a sigh the Prologue to her following Discourse, I found it otherwise: for smilingly thus she began, to the same purpose, though not in the same words.

My Aunt doth think she hath fully revenged her self of all the injuries I have done her, by thus banishing me from her presence, and my Native Countrey, to a place I never heard of, till I was doom'd to be an Inhabitant therein; and glad I am that this slavish sentence hath freed me from a more cruel doom of living under the Tyrany of a principal She-Devil. My Father dying, left me as I am inform'd an hundred pound, which by my Mothers death soon after, was almost doubled my Aunt, before his decease, had so insinuated into her easie nature, that she wheedled her to let this Money lie in her hand for my use, promising my Mother, that if I live to be of age, or married, I should have the sum intire, without substracting a penny, under what pretence soever, and would tender me as her own Daughter: My Mother dying with the satisfaction of my being well provided for, I was taken into the use of my Aunt, and for a while was indifferently holookt after, going to school with her own Son and Daughter. But some years having past over my head, I sound my self differenced from her Children, as much as might be, slighted, and abused, and my Couzens often beaten for their too much familiarity with me: and that which was worse, I was circumscribed of neceßary provision. Having always a bold daring Spirit, I troubled my self as little as I might, but made my wit and industry supply me, with what my Aunt was defective in; neither was I the sole sufferer in this affliction the servants bearing a part with me, having other proportion at Meals, than what her niggarly hand made dividend of, not making the meat conformable to our stomacks, but our stomacks to the meat; having dined, she lockt up all fast. The servants did not half so often grumble at her, as my Gutts; and that she might know how dissatisfyed they were, I went one day with an Hammer, and nailed up the House of Office dore; she having an occasion to make use of it, could not be admitted but being in great haste, was glad to apply her self to her own Bed-chamber, which I am sure she perfumed to the purpose. Coming down in a great rage, she enquired into the cause of this odd project, and who the author should be. To be short, she was acquainted that it was I, who being summoned to appear before her; Huzzie said she, was it you that nailed up the Privy dore? I was forced to plead Guilty. And what was the reason (Mrs. Ne're be good) you did so? Why truly forsooth (quoth I) you feed well and plentifully, and therefore Nature might command and require you to give her easement; and to that purpose you have in your Chamber a Close-stool; but we your servants, as we eat little or nothing, so we seldom have occasion to go to that house, which to us is altogether useless. She knew not whether she were best be angry, or pleased; but dissembling her passion, said, well Huz if, if you complain you shall have less: the less you eat, the cleaner will be your sheets, and so left me. Seeing her ultimate resolution was to keep me short of Victuals, I resolved to try some means whereby I might feed without her knowledge. Fortune favoured me so much, that one afternoon going up into her Chamber, wherein stood a great Chest she usually laid up her Provision in, I saw the Key in it, which she by forgetfulness had left behind: I presently stept to it, and opening the Lid, found there a Turkey Pie, which I made so bold with, that I took as much as would have served me three days, if I had eaten nothing else, and that continually: I got me down the stairs with all possible speed, to prevent discovery, and secure my Provant; I soon found place for that purpose, and having hid it, I began to consider what I had done, and that my Aunt would soon know, who it was that frighted her Turkey away, none else but me daring to be so bold; while I was deeply musing with my self, our Cat came purring by me, as if she had been sent by my good Angel, to be the Sacrifice that should free me from that punishment that would inevitably attend this Crime; so taking her up in my arms, I ran up into the Chamber, and having claw'd with my Nails the Flesh, and the Crust sufficiently, I committed poor innocent Puss to answer for what I had done. My Aunt a while after mißing her Key, went hastily to her Chamber, and seeing it in the Chest, condemned her own carelessness, and looking thereinto to see whether all was well, the Cat bounc'd out into her face; the suddain surprizal made her make a noise more discordant, than if twenty Screetch-Owls had been in Consort. Being alarm'd at this bellow, I was the first that got to my Aunt, and very inquisitive I was of her to know, what was the matter. Oh! said she, a scurvy Cat I negligently shut in the Chest, hath almost frighted me out of my wits, besides what other mischief she hath done me. But when she came to see what work supposedly the Cat had done, I was in good hopes that my Aunt would have taken a lodging in Bedlam.

As I laid hold of all opportunities to fill my belly, so some I studied; as for Example; twice or thrice a week we had a baked Pudding; I bought me a little dish about the bigness of a Porringer, and out of the Pan I would fill it, a fruitful Pudding to have always a young one at the side on't. The Dow which I commonly carried to the Bake-house, never went home so much in the Loaf, for I seldom failed to have a Cake out of it; both which I practised so long till my Aunt found me out, and soundly bang'd me for so doing. For these, and such like faults, I was so often and so unmercifully beaten, that I was resolved to be revenged on her. One day she being invited abroad, I was resolved to be even with her at home in this manner. One pair of stairs she had a stately Dining-room, wherein there was a Cup-board on which (being spread with a very fine cloath) stood variety of all manner of curious Glasses, such as she valued above her Plate, and took great delight in them, being prouder of shewing those to her guests, than some are in appearing in a fine new Gown to their Sweet-hearts. These I was resolved should fall down to my revenge, and be crusht to pieces by the weight of my indignation and fury; but before I would begin to act this doleful Tragedy, I went, and made all things ready; that is to say, I took a large Spannel that we had, and leading him to the street dore, I ran out into the middle of the street, calling him after me; he followed me, and I led him a dance so long, till he had dirtyed himself sufficiently, then going in adoors, I stole up softly the back stairs, the Dog following me into the Dining-room; then did I take his feet, and make them imprint the form thereof on the Cloath; having so done, I pull'd the cloath, and down came the Glaßes to the Floor, and by the fall not one of them escaped; this being done, I got into the next room, and crept underneath the Bed; the fall of the Glasses soon came to the ears of those that were below, who coming up, sound none in the room, but the Dog, and seeing the print of his claws in the cloath, ne're examined the matter farther, but to work they went with him, who wanting words to justifie his innocence, escaped the punishment by flight; whilst they pursued him, I stept down the stairs, without being known to have a hand in in the Plot. How my Aunt resented this sad accident, I will give those leave to judge, that ever had the like loss.

But this story I am about to tell you, succeeded not so well as the former: for it fell to my own scurvie Lot, to be punished with that which might have proved a piece of Revenge, though I intended no such matter, and which was worse, detected me as the author of the former. Our Maids being in the Fields, bleaching of Cloaths, my Aunt commanded me to frie some Tripes for her Dinner, which she had brought in from Market; I laying them carelesly down upon the Dresser, whilst I was cleaning the Frying-pan, our aforesaid great Dog swallowed up one half of them at one mouthful, without chewing them, and had near dispatcht the other half, before I could come to the rescue of my Aunts Dinner; I hastily threw down the Pan, which caused my Aunt to come running in, to see what was the matter; she seeing me buisily and eagerly imployed about the Dog, stept back in a place covert from my sight, where she might both hear and see. I basted him so long, holding him fast, that he disgorged one parcel of the Tripes, which I taking up, laid them on the Dresser; come, said I, basting him the while, this is not all you thief; I must have more yet; the Dog, as if he had understood me, discharged himself of the theft, and I verily believe, did not detain one single mouthful behind, so much for his honesty. So, so, said I, 'tis well, get you gone you Rogue, as long as you did as I did bid you, break my Aunts Cupboard of Glasses, I made much of you, but when you turn thief, and steal, you must be beaten into better manners.

My Aunt all this while was exercising her patience even to a miracle, and would not speak a word, because she would see what I intended farther. Hereupon I took my Tripes, and giving them a rench or two in a pail of water, I dryed them, flowred them, and into the Pan they went and fell a frying them, with as much confidence as if they had had no mischance befaln them. Being fryed, with my sawce, and all other things ready, I was going in haste to call my Aunt to Dinner, as she met me, and seeming to take no notice, seats her self at the Table, and turning one piece, than another, then a third, she takes the Dish and twirls it round, saying, they were not fryed to her mind, and that I did this on purpose, that I might have them all my self, and so you shall, said she and that I may be sure you do not slight good victuals (being too much Corn-fed) I will give you leave to sit down by me for once.

I knew not what to say, which way to look, nor what to think, but perceived by wy Aunts eyes, which were all of a flame, that she had discovered something that had highly offended her; I would have spoken something, but she interrupted me, saying familiarly, leave off talking, and eat your meat: I being somewhat backward, and she taking notice thereof; how now Mrs. Minks, (said she) is not that good enough for you, which is too good for me? Hnzif, I will have none of your Dogs leavings; and since you would not let him eat it, you shall eat is for him your self; and then I shall talk a little further with you. Seeing there was no help, I did eat of the Tripe, at every other bit, much good may do you, quoth she, eat heartily, and spare not, I chewed it like him that was gnawing a piece of his own Boots; but down it must go. When she thought I had eaten enough for that time, she fell upon me in that manner, that I had much ado to keep what I had within me, which I was resolved to do, lest she should make me fry it again to my Supper.

Having tired her self with beating me, she told me that this was not for the breaking of her Glasses; she had another of another nature for that, since she knew it was not a Dog, but a Bitch-Fox, that had done her all that mischief. Whereupon she drove me up stairs before her, and lockt me into a room, till she had breath to talk further with me.

I was ready to die with fear to think what she intended to do with me; at nights approach, she came to me with one of her Maids, and having lockt the dore to them, they unstript me, and naked as ever I was horn, they tyed my hands to the Bed-post, and lasht me with Whip-cord, till she had made me all over of a gore blood. Her Son hearing by the Maid how cruelly I was dealt withal, adding further, that he wondred how his Mother could be so hard hearted, as to tear my skin. Natural affection enforced him to pity me, and that pity began to increase that affection, which he hath had more than these two years for me; so that, as he confest to me afterwards, there was no greater trouble to him, than that he could not condole with me in my affliction. Having been confined two or three dayes to my Chamber, my Aunt was persuaded to make further tryal of me, and if I proved not then answerable to her expectation, she should for ever discard me. Upon these terms I was released, and found my Couzen overjoyed that I was enlarged. He was somewhat younger than my self, about fifteen years old, of an inclination very prone to love what was youthful or beautiful; and finding me very flexible to entertain his amorous propositions, followed me so close, that he obtained what he desired. Thus we continued some time together, and knowing how covetous his Mother was, and not allowing him hardly any thing to spend, I studied how I might assist him in his expence abroad: I was one day in the Shop, and looking into the Counter for something, I found a board at the end of the Till, loose, vvhich taking up, I could easily put in my hand, and take out vvhat Money I pleased; having novv taken out the Board, I knevv not vvhat to do; for I fastned it but very slenderly, neither could I do othervvise, having no time to do vvhat I vvould. Wherefore in the morning early, before my Aunt vvas up, I got into the Shop, and vvith a small Perser, I boared a couple of holes quite through the end, and tvvo sides of the Box, and so vvith Wire I fastned it, to my hearts content, but not so but I could loosen it again at my pleasure. My heart leapt to think, hovv this project taking effect, neither I, nor my friend could vvant Money at any time. Could I have concealed this to my self I vvould have done it, and so supplyed (as I thought convenient) my Couzen vvith Mony, the more to engage his affection to me. But I vvas forc'd to tell him thereof, (whom I knew as forward in any sort of wickedness as any body) because he was continually in the Shop. Having given him an account of my projection, I thought he would have been transported with joy, and was restless, till he had made an experiment; which having done, and finding my contrivance, an inexhaustible Mine to him, I thought he did intend to lock me in his arms everlastingly. Now did our freedom daily increase, and nothing obstructed them but want of liberty to enjoy them. But, as what is violent, is seldom permanent; so must our delights haue an end, and so much the sooner, by how much they exceed in measure. Being not satisfyed with stealing a kiss, or so forth in the Day time, We pitcht upon a Night, when he should run the hazard of coming into his Mothers Chamber, where I lay in a Trundle-bed under her, and be with me all night: He watcht his opportunity, staying up late, and I in pursuance of the design, had left the chamber dore open, and so our desires were accomplisht. But now (a mischief on't) we were so shackled in the fetters of a lasting sleep, that notwithstanding my Aunt bawl'd to me I know not how many times, it being late in the Morning, to rise and look after her business, yet I made no answer; at last she started out of the Bed, and stepping to mine, to see if I were not dead, found her Son inclosed in my Arms both fast asleep. But she awakened us so hastily out of our sleeps, that we lookt like a couple of Bedlamites, and so confounded with shame, that we had not a word to say. To be short, she first resolved to turn me out of dores, not caring whether I went, with or without Cloaths; but then considering she should disparage her Son, by shaming of me; concluded to send for the Master of the Uessel we now are in, and after some discourse, I was commanded to go with him, glad I was to go anywhere to be out of her reach; her Son, hearing of my sad sentence, would have followed me, but was interrupted; however yesterday, attempting by the way I had sound out to supply me with Money, he was catcht in the act by his Mother, and sent immediately to Prison, where I understand he is like to lie till we set Sail.

I was so attentive in the hearing what she related befell her, that I did eat her words as they fell from her. To retaliate her kindness, I gave an account of what I had lately run through, at least wise, as much as I thought convenient; and by this time the Sea-men began to take notice of our private conference, and by our familiarity they had seen, gave their judgements openly, that they thought there would be a Westminster wedding between us, before we should arrive at our intended Port. Hereupon we broke up School, and descended straight between Decks, there we found out Comerades tongues all imployed like a Dover Court; I for my part was resolved to be silent, that I might the better gather from them what they were, and what lewd things they had acted upon the Stage of this world.

But how often did I be-Ass my Rogueship, calling my self ten thousand Fools for having so good an opinion of my Rogueries, (thinking them no other than the very quintessence of wit) when I heard them discourse of what they had done, which they all did with more freedom, than a dying-man would confess his Sins to his Ghostly Father. And so they might very well do; for being past all shame ( perit cui pudor perjit) and the Law having past sentence on them, they could not suffer again for the same, without a re-commission.

The Wind coming about fair, and we all ready, command was given to weigh the Ankor; just as it was a Peek and our Fore-top-sail loose, and seeing then that there was no help but that I must go, I fully purposed to have leapt over-board (so attractive is our native Soil) had not the consideration of my Estate aboard, with that of my Mis, which I must leave behind, pulled me back. Whilst I was thus ruminating with my self, we had spread all our Canvas, the wind blowing fresh, we spoon'd away before it like an arrow out of a bow. Coming into the Ocean, I found my self possest with a new Spirit, and if there was ever any such thing as transmigration of Souls, certainly it was at that time, some new drown'd Sea-mans Soul hovering on the Deep, took up its habitation in my body, entring in at my mouth as I gap'd for breath, which the swiftness of the Ships sailing, and tossing of the Waves together, had almost totally deprived me of. I was so nimble and so active, that if I saw any halling Sheets aft, or hoising of Sail, would be sure to be with him; which our Master taking special notice of, encouraged me therein, so far, that venturing first into the tops, I afterwards upon it grew so bold, that when occasion required, I often helpt to furl a Sail, but being not my Crafts-Master, being more bold than skilful; on day I was in the Main-top, and getting astride the Yard-arm, (to make my self the better acquainted with it) I dropt off into the Sea, and had we not been becalmed, I had been drowned irrecoverably. Throwing me out a Rope, I got aboard, no more concerned with the danger I escaped from, than if I had been that while asleep in a Cabbin. My Master lookt on this accident as a certain Omen of my being a Sea-man, and thereupon made me his Cabbin-Boy, promising me when I had served him a time according to custom, he would advance me according to my diligence and fidelity, as for my ingenuity he questioned not.

We had not been above a Month at Sea, but by imploying all the leisure time I had among my Comerades, I had gained so intimate acquaintance, and so perfect a knowledge of them, that I shall endeavour to give you a Character of them; there was nineteen of them in all, beside my Mistress, whose late adventures I have given you an account of; and therefore shall pass her by and only tell you what the rest were, but first, what their Professions are.

CHAP. XI.

 

An Account and Character of such who went with me in our Voyage to a Plantation. viz.

[One Broken Tradesman. 2 Jilts. ...]

One Broken Tradesman. 2 Jilts. 1 Pretended poor Captain. 1 Counterfeit Libertine Minister. 1 Soldier of Fortune. 1 New Exchange Girl. 2 Button-makers. 1 Orange-Wench. 2 Crackt Maid-servants. 1 Stockin mender. 4 Common Prostitutes. One whereof was large Folio two of them in octavo, and one in decimo sexto, all loose in Sheets, of the first Edition imprinted at London. I might otherwise name the first a Ship of the first Rate, an unwieldy bulky thing, which would require more men than a Kingdom can well spare to Man her, old and leaky too, and must be pumpt every hour to keep her above water. The other next two had been tight Friggots, and excellent Sailers; but length of time had so decayed their Hukls, that they were unfit for anything but Fire-ships; the last was a pretty Pinace, but dammaged much in her Rigging, and would serve for an excellent Pickeroon still, having been from her Cradle taught the Art of Land-Piracy. But to begin first with my

Broken-Tradesman.

His Father liv'd in Excester in very good fashion, being one of the principal of the City; and though he had a very good Trade of his own, yet he thought it very incomplete to that of London, and thither must his Son be sent. A Confectioner for his Master was provided him; but he had not been with him ten weeks, before the Confectioner found that he was half undone by this sweet tootht Gutling; nay he ingenuously confest to me that his Pockets were continually cram'd with all sorts of Sweet-meats, as Pomecitron, Orange and Lemmon Pill, Comfits of all sorts, or what ever Confections, as were dryed; and his reason was for so doing, least being sent on an errand he should loose any time in the indulging his Palate: he did not so much as go to bed unfurnisht, sleeping with some sweet thing or other in his mouth, that he might dream of the rest. His Master concluding that he should be absolutely undone if he kept him much longer, sent for his Father, who coming up removed him from thence, and placed him with a Vintner, knowing experimentally that those that are sweet tootht are seldom drunkards. But the Gentleman, could not make so much haste to go out of town, as his Son did to be drunk; in seven dayes that he was in this Tavern, he was but five hours perfectly sober. It was well he made so much haste to show his inclination that he might not put his aged Father to the expence and trouble of another journey. His Father seeing he could devour trades so fast, and least some such should swallow him up at last, resolved to put him to one he could not eat, (yet one, too many have worn Thread bare) a Sales-man; he seemed diligent enough till his Father was gone out of Town, and then wanting what the indulgence of a Father continually bestowed upon him, he one morning early put on a very hansom Suit that fitted him, and taking along a very good Bruxels Chamlet Cloak (which he sold) away he marcht into the Country, committing many petit larcenies by the way, resolving (if it shoul fall to his chance) to die as near his Friends, as he could. At Hunnington he was apprehended for stealing a Silver Tumbler, but being known by some Relations he had in the Town, the business was husht up, and he sent home. His Father admired to see his Son return so soon after him, askt him the reason thereof, who craftily replyed, he could not live so far from his Parents. Though the old man was troubled that his Son should disappoint his expectations, yet he could not but shew himself a Dotard in acknowledging his Sons natural affection therein.

At last it was concluded on, that he should follow his Fathers Trade of Mercery, which my young man did, till his Fathers death, which was about two years after, but how faithfully, I must leave to those Parents to consider, who have brought their Children to shameful ends, and thereby have blemisht the spotless Reputation of their ancient Families, by not endeavouring to hinder the excursions of such debaucheries, as proceed from their known vicious constitutions. His Father leaving him his House, Shop, and Goods, he so apparel'd himself, and spent so largely, as in the excess neither had the conquest. These, and his extravagant Courtship made him the whole Town-talk. He had not hours enough in eight days to visit his Mistresses in a whole week, although he should address himself to one every hour in the day. His love was so general, that he would have enjoy'd them all, but the Law bounding his boundless desires to give himself that satisfaction, he was most prone unto, he was forc'd to elect one; it is strange he could not choose one honest Woman out of so many, for she matcht his Cock, she proving more inclinable to Venery, then he to any other Vice. As he reacht at the possession of all or none, so none at all could reach her full satisfaction.

The Marriage was but just consummated, and they hardly warm in each others embraces, when he turned his poor Mother out of doors, bidding her go live else where upon her Thirds, for they would have no Overseers in their house, nor such who should continually disturb their quiet with the tedious Lectures of Crab-tree morality. The Candle is now lighted at both ends, if he spent liberally with friends abroad, she had those at home to spend with, and upon; and that she might not come short of him; if she had heard he spent a Crown, she would double it in her expence. For one half year two Taylors had nothing else to do, but make them new Garments; and when they and their Friends were together in a Tavern, all the Drawers in the house were little enough to tend them; so inconsiderately generous, that a Poetaster who could never arrive at the height of a Ballad, presenting him with a hobbling nonsensical Epithalamium, he caused my ragged Rimer uncase immediately, and clorth'd him so, that he lookt rather like a gawdy Actor, than a Poet, bestowing over and above five pieces, that in his Drunkenness he might the more freely trumpet out his bounty. By these Courses his Shop was altogether neglected, and few Commodities vended, but what his Wives Paramour; took up on an everlasting credit. Growing now weary of Excester, and such vulgar Countrey delights, (as he was pleased to call them) he furnisht his Pockets with store of Money (having converted a round sum of Silver into Gold, away he rode for London; where being come, he omitted not any time which he might imploy either in places of pleasure or pastime. And being tired here too with the variety of his delights; and finding withal not above twenty pieces left, he mounts his Horse with an intention homewards, but by the way, having some business, (as a Wench to see or so) at Malborough on the Downs, he was met with, and robb'd, and with a cut or two (for he resisted) he made a shift to get to the Town. He had behaved himself so lowdly ill, that the report came thither, and those that would in his Fathers life time have trusted him with 500 l. would not now trust him with so many farthings; so that he was forc'd to sell his Horse, and go home on foot.

His Wife in the mean time had not been idle in her expences, rioting in that shameful manner, that the whole town cryed out shame on her: those deserved reproaches they daily threw upon her, made her resolve to lay hold on the opportunity of her Husbands absence and secure what she could to her own peculiar use, and quit the town; to that intent she consulted with her chiefest favorite, (and by the way take notice there is no Whore so notoriously common, but she keeps one whom she loves above all others, that shall take the freedom to beat her, abuse her, strip her sometimes when his Pimp-ship is in the humour, and will infallibly spend what 'ere she gets if she Intends to keep her Flesh and Bones from being under the Chyrurgeons hands) I say consulting him, he advised by all means to take some speedy course for her self-preservation, it is an instinct infused into the natures of irrationals; and therefore certainly man cannot be without. He needed not use any Arguments to perswade her to that she was already resolved to put in execution; and therefore she only desired him to know how she should secure the Goods in the Shop. Let that alone to me, said he, I will take that charge upon me; and that he might charm her into a consent, they talkt that in private, which the colour of their Faces publickly discovered.

The night appointed being come, for the perfecting what they had propounded, the Gallant was ready punctually at his hour with three or four Porters, by the help of whom he quickly removed all the choice Goods, or any that were worth Porterage to a place appointed. Having so done, he advised her to secure what Mony and Plate there was in the House; this was done so silently, that the Servants of the House were not awakened by any noise they made; there was not so much Money and Plate but it was portable enough between them; having thus contributed to the robbing her self, away she trudges with her friend to another place, than where he had sent the Goods; and having provided an Horse before for their purpose, in the morning early away they rode to Plimouth; about thirty miles distant, where having lodg'd her, and promising to return speedily, takes a good quantity of Money with him, and was never by her heard of after.

Her Husband coming home, and finding all things in this condition, was about to hang himself, (and so he might, for few loved him so well as to hinder him from it, especially now seeing there was no more good to be done with him) but comforting himself, that his House was still left standing, he grieved very little; for he was so little acquainted hitherto with grief, that he knew not what it was. He had not rested in it above one night, but he sold it, and what Goods remain'd, and it was not two hours after before he was arrested, and so forced to part with above three parts of what the Sale had brought him in, to discharge the Debts he owed in that City. It was not long after that all was gone, and in that juncture of time, his Wife returned with hardly a rag to cover that nakedness, she had so often lasciviously exposed to view. What became of her afterwwards, I know not; but he to shun the daily flouts and insupportable slightings of his Relations and Quondam Friends, footed it for Barnstable , and rather than through despair destroy himself at home, he would try his fortunes by labouring in another Countrey. The next Person I am to treat of, are a couple of

Jilts,

Fellows that must run through a many other faculties of an inferior Class, before they can attain to the true knowledge of this profound Mystery; and having obtained this, they commence Master of Arts; which Arts are divided into that of High-Padding, Low-Padding, Cloy-Filing, Bung-Nipping, Prancers-Prigging, Duds-Lifting, Rhum-Napping, Cove-Cuffing, Mort-Trapping, Stamp-Flashing, Ken-milling, Jerk the Naskin, with many more of the like quality. Such were these two Jilts, who had they staid longer in London, instead of taking shipping here, they would have taken shipping at New-gate, and Sailed up Holbourn, and passing by the dangerous Rocks of St. Giles's, would irrecoverably have been cast away at Tybourn.

I did not find by their discourse any great matter of ingenuity, having not wit enough to practice any thing of their own designing; they were old seasoned Rogues, and were content to tread in the same old paths their Predecessors had trod in before, without making any new discovery. And therefore I shall give you an account only, that not daring to stay longer in London, they were constrained to betake themselves to the Countrey. The week before the Sizes they came to Excester, setting up their Horses at an Inn, they presently (not to loose time) walkt to see the City, and under that pretence to try what advantages they could make therein, went into several Taverns, and where they could not get civily into Company, they thought they might bubble, they rudely intruded, and had like to have been soundly basted for their pains; they found that Gaming would not suit their purpose in that precise place, therefore the next day they resolved to experience what Jilting would do; and that they might carry on their design with the less suspition, they bespoke a dish or two of Meat for Dinner in a Tavern, inviting the Man of the House and his Wife to eat with them; they called freely for Wine, and drank pretty smartly; at length they were left alone, one of them steps up the stairs, and gets into the Vintners Lodging-room, where seeing a large Trunk, he attempts to open it with his Picklocks, (which they have of all sorts and fises from a Street Door to a Cabinet) being too long a fumbling about his business, the Vintner came up to his Comerade the mean time, and asking where his friend was; the other replyed, he was gone up to the House of Office; Nay, that can not be, replyed he, for it is below in the Yard and thereupon (his heart mis-giving him) he ran up hastily the stairs, and looking back, saw him that he left below at the stairhead ready to go down, and the other that was above, coming out of his Chamber, not knowing how to seize them both, he cryed out, stop the thief that is coming down, and in the mean time clos'd in with him that was above and struggling with him, he was forc'd to quit an hundred Pound Bagg, that the Jilt had got under his arm, which made the Vintner then more eager to secure him: in short, they were both secured, and carryed before a Justice; there needed no other evidence to convict them, than a great bunch of those Pick-locks found about them. Upon this, they were committed, and that very Sizes (having miraculously before escaped buzzing in the fist) both sentenced to be Transported.

Now give me leave to give you an account (if it be possible) of one that is every thing, yet nothing. By his Garb, both a Gentleman, and a Soldier too, and such an one is this

Pretended (poor) Captain.

His Ancestors by the Fathers side in a continued Line to him, have been well known to be remarkable Beggers some Centuries; I know not, but that they may draw their Original from King Fergus, or some other great Irish Prince; for to this day the meaner sort of the Natives of Ireland had rather see their Children beg, than be mechanically imployed, by following some honest Trade, or Occupation. And that is the reason that so many Serving-men swarm from the middle and meaner sort of them, learning to cringe when they are young, that they may beg with the better grace when they are old. His Grand-Father by an unhappy, or happy accident, when he was a Child, fell into the Fire, and so scorcht his face, that had you seen it, you would have sworn it had been a young scorcht Devils-head half roasted; I say by that advantage, (which others would call a disadvantage) when he came to be of years, removing where he was not known, he gained daily by begging considerably, pretending that disaster came by Powder, as he was couragiously fighting in the famous Battle of Lepanto; and which to confirm the belief, he had lost a Leg by a confounded Ulcer, which he pretended he lost by a Cannon-shot, at the same time. By which means he had got sufficiently to have maintained his Son not in idle courses, if he had had the Grace to have rightly used it; but he coming of Age, spent that in a Month, which his Father had got in twenty scorching Summers, and as many cold benumming Winters, scorning to degenerate from the Ancient practice of his Predecessors; and like a Crafts-master, purchased a Sea mans old suit of Apparel, with his Red Cap, and had so rolled himself in Pitch, that he might have served a whole City for a general Antidote in a Contagion. He begg'd up and down the Countrey, (pretending to go home,) under the notion of being cast away, and had lost all; and therefore desired the charity of well minded People, that it might be a means to carry him to his friends and acquaintance. He had learn'd sea-terms of Art, and applyed them very well in all his wonderful relations. Coming to his Quarters at night, after two or three deep fetcht sighs, he would in general complain of his hard Fortune, giving some small hints of what considerable sums he lost this last Ship-wrack; then as if he corrected himself for so doing in the discovery of his misery, he would say, well, it is but a madness and a great folly to grumble at the hand of Providence, We must submit to Dispensations. These had notes coming from his Religious Organ-pipe, sounded so lowdly in the ears of his Landlady, that she tuned them so among the Neighbourhood, that the room wherein he was, fill'd presently. He had an excellent faculty in telling a doleful story, and would Limn the horrour of Ship-wrack so to the life, that the womens eyes about him dropt as fast as water out of a Cullender: after this fell a shower of two pences, single pence, half pence, &c. By this subtlety he never wanted Mony, Victuals, strong Drink, nor good Lodging. And by the help of a good memory as I am informed he travailed in and about England, begging in this manner, nine years, and never came into a Town twice.

Our poor Captain the Son of this maunding Sea-man, (that never saw the Ocean, and therefore could hardly be otherwise Shipwrackt, than against a Whipping-post, or the Gallows) had another Spirit, whose Soul had neither communication with, nor relation to the meanness of his Fathers; for from his child-hood, he begg'd as the Orphan of a wealthy Merchant, whose Estate was embezel'd by the avarice of his Guardian, and since lavishly spent by the profuse prodigality of his Son; since dead. That now having neither Parents, nor Friends left living, he was exposed to this miserable way of craving the benevolence of the charitable. He made a shift to live after this manner till he was fifteen years of age; but the People noting him to be a lusty Lad, threatned if he would not work, to send him to Bridewel; that word Work, so startled him, that he was absolutely frighted out of that begging humour. Hearing at that instant the Drums beat for Voluntiers in some forreign expedition, he lifted himself, and instead of Advance Money, had Shooes, Stockins, Hat, and Coat, Sword, and Belt, with what else was requisite for a Soldier. And now he shewed clearly what blood he had in him, and that his Mother had the greatest share in his generation. For when she was in her Ale, (as she often would be) she never gloried nor boasted of any thing more, then that her Husband was a Soldier at Tilbury Camp, and that loosing his Thumb by firing his own Musquet, her Majesty gave him a Pension of a maimed Soldier; that if he begg'd afterwards, it was no disgrace, being so miserably disenabled from working.

This sprightly young Soldier, being thus accoutred beyond his own, or any bodie's expectation else, ramm'd in the stones of the Street by his strutting to some purpose, leaving not any place of the City unvisited, that he might shew his Gallantry, especially such places he before had begg'd in. You could not have affronted him worse, than to call him by what name his Mother gave him, (for I question whether he was christian'd) and would be as ready to draw to vindicate his Honour. But the wind serving fair, and all things ready, setting sail, they arrived in safety at their Port. What service he did in that expedition, I could not gather from him, (undoubtedly it was his modesty that hindred him, rather desiring to have some other mouth to proclaim his worth than his own) but this he confest, that his often hiding himself when any Party was commanded to march out of the Garrison, occasioned his Officers to tie him so often Neck and Heels, that he thought he should go double as long as he lived, and that his Breech was grown stupidly senseless by often riding the wooden Horse. However, he was constrained to tarry here six years; but at length he grew so tired with watching once in four dayes, and so scar'd with the dangers the frequent Alarms acquainted his ears with, once in six weeks at least, that he resolved rather to venture a hanging by his own fellow Soldiers, than run the hazard of being shot by his Enemies; and so watching his opportunity, got into a Vessel bound for England , and came a way, not affording those he left behind, so much as a farewel; but being far enough off the Shore, cryed out aloud, Harm watch, Harm catch. Landing at Plimouth, he bought him an ordinary red Scarf, and made it into a Sling to carry his hand in, which had as many Plaisters on it, as are used in an Hospital a week, sowing it to his Shoulder, and tying a large bow knot on it; with his Sword by his side, and a laced Hat, that he had purchased at second hand, he walk'd the Streets, and had the impudence to address himself to the Governour of the town, in this, or the like manner.

Although I have not the Honour to be acquainted with you Great Sir, in whose Person dwells (as I hear) all the Virtue and Valour of slain English Heroes, by a Transmigration; yet I am not unknown to the African part of the Macrocosme, where my single Sword hath eaten its way through thousands, and hath afterwards drank it self into a Surfeit, with the blood of those Hell-dyed Infidels. My forward valour soon rewarded my unknown Worth, and for no other reason, than that I was thought fit to command the Destinies, having so great a power over Life and Death, I was made a Captain. At first, the great care I had to preserve my own, made me expose my self as their Target, to guard them from their enemies Arrows, so that in one Battail, (wherein there was threescore thousand men of the adverse party, there was but three hundred of them escap'd with life to inform their friends of their Countreys loss,) I say, in that barbarous conflict I returned home, as thick stuck with Arrows, as a Porcupine with Quills; afterwards my Name served to fright the Rogues, without fighting a stroak. But the long absence from my own Countrey, possest me with so great a desire of seeing that blessed Soil, that gave me breath, I resolved to acquit my Command, and happy in this opportunity of tendring my Person and Services at the feet of a Soul, so magnanimous as your self.

Having finished his Formal-bumbastical-hyperbolical Speech, the Governor was at a stand, what to do with this mighty Garagantua , having almost disenabled his tongue from speaking, by biting it e'en through, to contein himself from laughing out right; but considering with himself, promised him at last, that he would Muster him in his own Company for the present, till he could find out something more suitable to his worth and quality, and for the present gave him some Money, which our Captain getting, drunk with all that night in the company of some Officers, into which he had intruded himself, and taking the liberty of undervaluing some of them in his prodigious cracking, was soundly kick'd, for all his lame hand. But such was the fortune of War, that our Captain had not trailed a Pike above a Month, before he stole a Chamber-pot, two Quart-pots, Flaggons, with some other Pewter, and sold them at another Ale-house in the Town; with the Money, he got drunk, and coming home home to his Quarters, his Landlady taxing him with the Theft, made no more ado, but first abusing her in all the most approbrious terms that a Whore could invent, that had served three seven years Apprentiships to a Billings-gate Fish-woman, he then manfully beat her, and in that manner, that she was forc'd to cry out Murder. Neighbours coming in, seiz'd my valiant Captain, and in that pickle he was in, carried him before the Governour, who seeing him in that drunken condition, sent him to the Main-guard, where he lay all that night as round as a Ball. The next morning he was tryed by a Council of War, and finding him a Counterfeit, and that he was nothing but a commixt piece of Debauchery, and Villany, condemned him to run the Gauntlet, which he did on the Hoe of Plimouth, through his own company, and another drawn up thither for that purpose; and afterwards at the old Town-gate, had his Sword broken over his head, and so cashier'd.

This usage was enough to make any one hate to be a Soldier as it did him, for he resolved to settle to his Trade, yet he liked very well the name of Captain, and getting far enough off from this disgracing place; he so shaped his design, that he questioned not but that this Title would be very advantageous: and to make a tryal how it would prove, he applyed himself to a Gentlemans house, (at that time when Loyalty to our lawful Prince was accounted Treason against the Commonwealth) and understanding by enquiry the name of the Person, and that he was a strong Cavalier, (as they then called them) and a great lover of all such, and knock'd at the door, and ask'd to speak with the Master of the House, naming him, he being informed therewith readily came, and my Captain was as ready to address himself thus, in a low voice.

Sir, Report renders you a lover of your King, and such as have suffered for his Sacred Majesties sake. My Father was a Colonel, and his Loyalty he could not better express than by dying in his Majesties Service at Edge-hill; to revenge my Fathers death, and shew that I had the same blood running in my Veins, I have not only ventured my Youth upon any hazard, the boldest Cavalier ever yet attempted, but since, I have had my Estate sequestred too, and dare not own my name.

This Forgery took so good effect, that it produced him forty shillings, with directions to go to another Gentleman of the like Principles, about ten miles distance; where addressing himself in the same, or like terms, the pretence took effect there too. Now did he buy himself a Sword, and getting a white Cap on his Head, pretended himself sick too, as well as maimed; by which means he pickt up a great deal of money; the Rogue was grown so covetous, and was resolved not to loose his labour where ever he came; if he had not any money given him, he would infallibly steal something in lieu thereof. Coming at length to the house of a person of Quality, he addrest himself there as he had done elsewhere, the Knight after he had given him money, commanded some of his Servants to carry him into the Buttery; they knowing by the respects their Master shewed him, he must be a Royalist, drank a Health to the King, and by degrees to each of the Royal Progeny, not leaving out some of the Nobility, that had been most eminently serviceable to the King, and by that time there was none (not exempting the Butler) but had his dose; my Captain taking the advantage of their disordred senses, was not contented with a Bowl, but pickt up a silver Salt too, which one more sober than the rest observing, let him go out of the Gate before he apprehended him; and seeing that he was resolved to march off with them, seized him, and drew him back again into the Court-yard, where demanding from him what he had stoln, the Captain denyed the Fact, with many bitter imprecations, which gathered the Servants about him, who searching him found the theft, who if their Master had not interposed, they would have knockt this Impostor in the head. He knew that the Law would punish him sufficiently, and being a Justice of Peace, caused his Cleark to write his Mittimus, and so was sent to Excester -Goal, where he remained till Sizes, and then received the same Sentence, that had past upon the Jilts before. Now since I have described one counterfet that abused and robb'd the Countrey, under the pretence of Loyalty; give me leave to characterize another counterfeit (the worst of the two) who under the cloak of Religion, hid his debaucheries, whilst he deceived and deluded the ignorant, especially the Female Sex, with his lowd, long, and impertinent Praying, and false Doctrine, and that was the

Counterfeit Libertine Minister.

It is no wonder that he lived (as we do still) in a staggering age, for the fall of Adam, broke the bones of his Children, and crippled his posterity, so that we are both blind in our Judgements, and lame in our Practises. At first he was made perfect, which was intimated by being brought into the world naked, to signifie that the great Former of all things was not ashamed of his workmanship; but when the Devil sent erroneous Tenents, attended with damned Practices into the world, he advised the Brochers and Professors thereof to cover their deformity, with the mouth of tenderness of Conscience; but were their skins as tough as their Consciences, and their Flesh as hard as their Hearts, they would be both Ax and Halter-proof; they might laugh at the Block, and defie the Gallows.

This religious Proteus, this Hetereclite in Divinity, (for he was deficient in what he ought to do, or believe, and redundant in what he ought not,) when he first appeared in a Tub, or a thing like a Pulpit, he was, (as he acknowledged,) like Æsop's Jay, in a dress of borrowed Feathers, preaching the works of other men, which must needs be the worse for coming out of his defiled mouth, as a Shirt worn by a polluted Body. He mangled the modern Divines more barbarously, than an Executioner a Traytors Body; not forbearing to give old Priscian a knock on the bald crown. The height of his Eloquence consisted in railing against Popery, calling Episcopacy the Sister of the Whore of Babylon, running on in his Preachment like a mad Dog, foaming, and open-mouth'd, yelping at the Honourable Clergy in general, and biting his Brethren the Sectaries, whom he would have his Auditory believe are as mad as himself; but having run himself out of breath, what a humming, and a spitting there was, and by the blowing his Nose, made many a filthy Parenthesis; having concluded his Sermon, he Prayed, shutting his eyes, and would rather utter non-sence, and tautologies, than use any studyed Form. All being finished, he steals out demurely out of the Meeting-House with his Sword by his side (a Captain and an Independent) and though he neither obeyed Christs Commission, or wore his Livery, yet would be accounted one of his Menial Servants. Being got out, one would thank him for the great pains he took; another invited him to Dinner; a third, a fourth, a fifth, letting them all alone till the tenth made his proffer: at last, where he thought he should have the best entertainment, there he would express the acceptance of the proffer. He could not go amiss for his Supper; and to retaliate their kindness, before the Cloath was laid, he would bestow on them a sleeping Prayer of an hour and half, most commonly proportioning the time to that of Supper-dressing Certainly his design therein was like the Scribes and Pharisees, who had never been condemned for long Prayer, had they not been used as so many Graces before their cursed Meals of Orphans Estates, and Widdows Houses. He endeavoured to make his interest good amongst the Females, knowing how prevalently powerful they are commonly over their Husbands inclinations, which he practised with so much craft and cunning; first possessing them strongly with a good esteem of his Holy Life and Conversation, that they verily believed one word of his would either Saint them or Reprobate them, when he pleased; which he perceiving, resolved to play the Gypsy with them, telling good fortunes to none, but such as crost his hand with a piece of Silver; that is to say, in private Meetings and Conferences, having occasion to speak of such, and such, it lay in his power then to say that such a one to his knowledge is a precious Saint, a constant hearer of the word, having an excellent gift in Prayer, or such a one is lately fallen, she is started aside into the by-paths of Sin and Iniquity, &c. So that you see by Him, as well as by the Pope, the People might be canoniz'd for Money.

But imagining this Faction was not so powerful, nor encouraging as the Anabaptists; and finding that the fadng Gourds of his foolish hopes and expectations of preferment began to wither; he in down-right terms fell about telling his Congregation, they must be Re-baptized, or they must not hope for Salvation. He was amongst the Anabaptists so long, till (notwithstanding he was so highly cryed up for his powerful teaching,) he had gotten seven young Sisters with child in less than a year, and it was shrewdly suspected he had made three times four of his Brethren Cuckolds. Therefore he was by the voice of the whole Congregation excommunicated, and delivered unto Satan. His hand being now in, he was resolved to try all, till he might advance himself by one. So that he might not be beholding to any. In this juncture the good old Religion so long raked up in the dust, began to shew its heavenly countenance again, whose glorious light these Owls and Batts durst not look upon.

It is observed, that it hath been the fashion to wear yellow Ruffs; but after one Mrs. Turner a notoriously wicked Woman, was hang'd with one of them about her neck, that Mode not only vanisht, but became shamefully ridiculous; So this our Hypocrite seeing so many of his Brethren (who had poysoned more with their Doctrines, than Mrs. Turner with her Potions,) go to the Gallows wearing the Liveries of a Sectarian, thought it more eligible to turn Cat in the Pan, and become an A la mode Episcopalian, than let the fowl Fiend play the Hobgoblin with him, as he had done many, cumbling such in the Mire, who lately sat in the Saddle, tossing others till their necks were broken, and crippling others both in their Estates and Opinions.



Down with all such, let them no longer stand,
Base Caterpillers that consum'd the Land,
Who rent the Common-prayr-book & Lawn sleeves,
And made the house of God a den of Theeves.
And may the Sacred Pulpit e're be free,
From such Quack-salvers in Divinity.

Every one knowing how a great Changling this fellow was in Religion, no body believed a word that he said; nor would either trust or imploy him upon any account whatsoever; so that he was necessitated to take this course, or do worse, by adding one more to the number of Barbadoes Inhabitants; neither did he want a Volunteer aboard upon the same design, a lusty young sprightly fellow, a Man both of wit and courage, though of slender Fortunes, and calls himself,

A Soldier of Fortune.

He was well born, and gentilely educated, who lived in a pamper'd condition till the age of seventeen; at which time his Father dying, the Estate fell to the Elder Brother, who mounting into his Fathers (yet warm) seat, could not conceal his Turkish cruel disposition against his Brethren; yet though the Law held his hands from cutting off their Heads, his austere countenance, and severe carriage towards them, did notwithstanding cut off their hopes from ever expecting more than barely what their Father left them in Money. Two hundred Pounds was this Gentlemans Portion, who returning it to London, soon followed after, where equipping himself suitable to the Grandeur of the Place, and gallantry of the Persons he came acquainted with; he spent his time in things so agreeable to his constitution, that his thoughts never climb'd any other Heaven, than this his imaginary one, which he wisht might ever continue. He scattered his Money a pace, and how could he otherwise; for his Exchange was a Tavern, his Lodging a Brothel; his Hide-park, a Gaming-ordinary, his Study, a Play-house; his associates, Bully Ruffins; his Mistresses, Courtezana's; had his constant attendants, Pimps, Parasites, Spongers, Wheedlers, and such like. The Devil's in them all, if one was not enough to impoverish a Mint, or drain a Silver-mine, though it reacht to the Centre of the Earth.

By this you may imagine his two hundred Pounds could not last long; his Hangers on perceiving his Money was at the last gasp, fell off, being loath to see so dear a friend depart. He was now left Money-less, and Friend-less, and what came nearest his heart, he was jeered, and flouted by such he had formerly liberally expended on. As he past the streets, he hath heard his old Comerades say one to the other; There goes such a one, shall we call him, and drink a Glass of Wine together? No, no, let him go, pox on him; he hath not a Penny in his Pocket to bless himself withal; he had Money once, but like a Fool, he could not keep it; which made him often repeat this true saying of the Poet;



Non habet infoelix paupertas durius in se
Quam quod ridiculos homines facit——

Were it not for that, Poverty is a property we might pride in; nor would the Philosopher voluntarily have Shipwrackt his Fortunes, but that he might purchase thereby, that glorious Motto; Omnia mea mecum porto. Dioclesian so great an Emperour, that Lætus parallels him with Jupiter; nay, he allow'd himself to be cal'd Lord, and God, and would be sued unto, as a God; but having at last tryed sufficiently the vanity of his own vain-glory, he freely without compulsion, laid aside his Empire, and returned to a private life; being sollicited afterwards by several to resume his former Power, and Glory, he absolutely refus'd it, saying, Did you see the Herbs set with my own hands in my Garden at Salona; you would think me too good a Gardner, to become a miserable Emperour.

There was nothing grated on his Spirit more than to be slighted in this his low condition, by such he had supported from sinking into the Earth: and that he might not longer be afflicted in this manner, he projected several ways, how he might imploy himself in something, that might remove him from the scorn and reproach of the world. His credit was quite worn out, owing something in all the Taverns and Ale-houses that he was acquainted withall, through the wholCity, and would have ran farther in their Debt, but that they not only hindred from so doing, but likewise threatned him, by taking a course for what he owed already. This made him remove his Quarters to another remote quarter of the City. His Cloaths were so good, as that they gained him credit for a Months Lodging and Dyet, in which time, he wrote several Ballads, which he sold in the Old Baily, getting for the worst half a Crown or three shillings; but his Chapmen finding themselves loosers by his works, did so revile and villifie him the next time they saw him, that he was resolved to write no more, for it seems he had not writ Non-sense enough to please the Commonalty; he had taken too much pains to express his wit, and that spoiled all; soaring so high, the dim sighted vulgar could not discern him.

One day walking abroad Melancholy to think his first design was frustrated, he fell accidentally into the company of four or five, so unsuitably or antickly habited, that he verily thought they could not have cloathed themselves more out of fashion, than if for so doing, they had consulted all the Brokers in Long-lane, or Houns-ditch. At length by their toning of several scraps of Plays, and the whining out of Lovers parts, he judged them to be Players of the worst Edition, and that wanting some to compleat their number, they endeavoured to perswade him to make one of their Stroling-company. They needed not many words to perswade one, that knew not what to do with himself; wherefore, he readily consented to their Propositions. Viewing them well, and their Habits, he absolutely concluded, that their Company had been lately broken, and that they had shared household-stuff, every one taking what he could lay his hands on of the Properties, (though very improper to wear publickly) with which, necessity since hath forced them to cover their own nakedness. However, he was resolved to go through, with what he promised, and so calling for what was to pay, being one and twenty pence among them all, they made a hard shift to pay the shot within three half pence, and so marcht off. They provided him a lodging, where they all lay that night, and the next morning, their undertaker came, who summoning them all into a large Room, there appeared also three or four Women, who with the rest rehearsed their parts in Actæon and Diana. After rehearsal the Undertaker being informed what our Soldier of Fortune was, came and saluted him kindly, and welcom'd him into their Society, and giving him his part to study, carried him to the Tavern, with some of the three-quarter sharers, and made him drunk at his initiation.

Having studied Actæon and Diana, Jack Swabber, Simkin in the Chest, Miles the Miller, Simpleton the Smith, with divers other drolling farces, away they strolled into the Countrey, some in a Coach (by reason of the Properties they carried with them,) others on Foot of the meaner sort, and some on Horse-back; had the most intelligent met them, it would have puzzled him to have told what they were. The first thing they did when they came to a Town, was to acquaint the Mayor thereof with their intent, producing their Patent which authorized them. Having the grant of the Mayor, most commonly they were permitted the Town-Hall to Play in. At first, commonly they had usually such great audiences, and got so much Money, that it undid them, for it made them insolent, idle, careless; alwayes drunk, and continually quarrelling, so that the Town and Countrey growing weary of them, their poverty also made them weary of the Town. The next place they come at, it may be, there they would endeavor to regulate those disorders; but no sooner were they flusht, but they fell into the like confused Chaos. There was seldom a Rehearsal in the morning, in which there was not some scuffle; sometimes altogether by the ears, all engaged in a Quarrel, but none knowing the cause of it. Their differences most commonly did arise from ones exalting his own worth, by the undervaluing anothers, saying, that such a one had a greater share than he, though he deserved more; that such a fellow had a Noble part, when he had that of a Servant, whereas he better merited to be a Prince, than the other a Foot-boy. Damn me, said another, that fellow that speaks now hath no Soul; a Parrot would be taught to speak better, and understand more than he; a Baboon treads a Stage a thousand degrees beyond him. See but yonder Horse-fac'd Lover; is he fit to act that part with that hunting face of his? it is enough without the help of a Vizard, to fright his Mistress into Convulsion-fits, or make a young woman miscarry, that hath not half gone her time, If reviling one another, would not put them together by the ears, there was another expedient would infallibly do it. There was one well stricken in years, yet far more amorous, or salatious than the younger, and when she found not her accustomed pleasures, she judg'd that one of those three, had stoll them from her; when jealousie had possest her of that Opinion, she ne're capitulated with them otherwise, than with her hands, which she used so nimbly, together with the nails, that had not black Patches been in fashion, I know not how without shame, they could have played. The Men on the other side, being known Rivals to one another, could not forbear shewing their animosities, (as their parts permitted them) one being run into the hand, another through the Arm, making a real Tragedie of what was but pretended. Their stock of Cloaths was very small, so that a Parson was forc'd to act in a Lawyers Gown, instead of one that was Canonical; a Bishop, with a Shepherds Crook, instead of a Crozier, and a Cushion so dented, that the corners might be more perspicuous, instead of a Miter; they wanted a Target, and knew not what to do; at last, the invention of one of the wittiest, helpt them to a large wooden Tray, and nailing a piece of Tape to the sides within, served rarely well, The Actors were few, wherefore some acted three or four parts, nay one acted two parts at once upon the Stage, the King, and the Nobleman; when as a Nobleman, in a long mourning Cloak, (for they could get nothing else, that could nearer represent him by) he spake to an Indian Gown that lay in a Chair, with a Past-board Crown that lay upon it, all bedawbed with yellow, (and know not what colours) by a Countrey Sign-Painter, to make it look like. Having ended his Speech, he threw off the long Cloak, and putting on the Crown and Gown, he then as a King returned an answer to the Cloak, I mean the Nobleman, making a many changes, till the conference was over. The Nobleman, i. e. the Cloak, being taken off the Stage, that is, having made his exit, it was the Kings Cue to seat himself a while, to give audience to a Person, that had great concerns with his Majesty, whose Speech being long, and his memory treacherous, he had not gon a quarter through his Speech, but that he was irrecoverably out, past all prompting; the King not knowing how to help, and the Audience eagerly expecting his going on, at last it came into his Head, ingenuously to tell him that he had heard enough, he would hear the rest within, by which means the Play went on.

One Market day (which was the chief time they pitcht on) they Acted a Play, (by the invitation of some Gentlemen in a Tavern,) in which there were 2 which fought on the stage, which were supposed Clowns, and were to baste one another to some purpose. A Countrey Gentleman being there present, and having never seen a Play, but this Acted once before, and seeing them fight again in the same manner, as they had done before, steps hastily down stairs, and bringing up a Bottle of Wine in his hand, interposes between them; telling them they should not thus bear a grudge one to the other, but that they should be friends; and to that end he had brought a Bottle of Wine, that they should shake hands, and drink to each other, and would not stir off the place, till he had seen them so do, and go too, off a several way. That Scene was spoiled, however, they played on, and coming to the third Scene in the fourth Act, these Fellows were to enter again; the Gentleman seeing them together, and facing each other, ran from his seat to them again, swearing that he that gave the first blow, should beat him too; What, said he, cannot we be quiet here, but you two Loggerheads must spoil the Play? This put the whole audience into such laughter and confusion, that the Play was forced to be deferred till another days action.

They staid not long in a place, the People being tired with such costly novelties as they call'd them, which made them ramble every where. Coming to York, they had the same success at first, as they found else where, but had like to have been scarr'd out of their wits. For one day acting a Play, wherein the King of Scots was to be murdred barbarously by his Subjects, and having intimation of the suddain coming of the assassinates, condoled his own unhappy Fate, and condemns the treachery of his Subjects proceedings; is there no hope of Life, is there never a true Scot; that now dares stand by me? A Scot there present, seeing the murderers came in with their drawn Swords, cryed out, there is one left still, my neen sel, yar een Country-man. Let the Deel fill my wem with smaw steans, if I make not the Loons eat my Sward as smaw as Saunies durch. And thereupon drew his broad Sword, and at them he came as desperately resolved, as if they had been real enemies; and notwithstanding the King intreated him to be patient, he grew more furious, and would have prosecuted them to death, had not his supposed Majesty held him in his arms, till they had made their escape. Not long after this they were invited to act at a Gentlemans house in the Countrey, where they acted their parts so badly, by stealing several pieces of Plate, that some of them had like to have acted their last; Our Soldier of Fortune fearing by their ends, he might come to his last, fled away privately to London; where he betook himself to his Pen again, altering the Scene of his former design. Observeing what large encouragement some received from their Dedications, he resolved to make tryal of scribling too: the first that he wrote was indifferently well accepted of, it being an Hodge-podge of Translation, Transcription, Collection, and his own Composition; he Dedicating it to a Person of Quality, was largely rewarded; had he stuck here, he had done well, but being infected with the base ingratitude of Mercenary Scriblers, he presented his Book to at least twenty more, with the same Dedication, the name onely altered, which brought him into so great dis-esteem amongst such as would have been his constant Benefactors, that ever after they would never accept of his Presentations. And now poor Gentleman, not knowing what to do, walking melancholy in the New-Exchange, he took special notice of a young Trader, who eyed him as much, as he her (for he was a handsom proper young man, and had cloaths on his back, a Gentleman needed not be ashamed to wear,) they gazed at each other a pretty while at a distance, but Love quickly brought them nearer together. For having Mony in his Pocket, he approacht the Shop with a pretence to buy some Linen, where having seen some of several sorts, he bought some, the better to engage her in a discourse He askt her whether she was single, and whether that was her Shop? she answered, she was married, and therefore had nothing she could call her own. How Madam , (said he) I cannot doubt but that you have many Virtues, which you may justly call your own; you have Beauty too, and admirable outward parts. I thank your good opinion, Sir, (said she) but I look upon her as unworthy to deserve the name of an owner, that either canot, or durst not giv what is in her possession: though you cannot give, Madam, yet you may so dispose of that beautious mirrour of your Sex, your Face, or what else you have, as that the frequent loan thereof, may be esteemed equal to the gift. She was quick of apprehension, and understood his drift, and though she answered him not, yet her smiles shewed a sufficient satisfaction to his amorous discourse, and her blushes bid him do if he durst. To be short, he won her so absolutely to himself, in a little time, that she had nothing in her power, which she did not freely give him, till her Husband had almost nothing left; and suspecting the infidelity of his Wife, watcht her so narrowly, that her Enamorato enjoyed her rarely, and seldomer had his wants supplyed.

Now was he forced to look out again, but it was not long before he was informed of a Maid that was very well to pass in the world, somewhat ancient, and had she not had some few natural deformities, she had never lived a Maid so long; for she was long nos'd, thin lipt, beetle brow'd, short neckt, bunch-backt, and hopper-arst. This dismaid not him, knowing she had Money to make all good; and so with a little Courtship (she being already ravisht to think, (her hopes of marrying having long since taken leave of her) she should be joyned to a young man, and a handsom man too;) I say the Marriage was quickly huddled up: I do not hear they had many quarrels the first week; but not many weeks past over their heads, before his extravagancy, and her covetousness could not agree. Besides, she grew intolerable jealous, (as most do who are conscious of their own imperfections,) and shewed so many of her damned qualities, that he lived a hellish life with her; had he not been a fool, he might have known before what she was.

She had better been quiet, for the more unquietly he lived at home, the more jocundly he spent abroad; till in fine he spent all, so that he resolved to leave her, and return to his former Mistress, who is now abroad, I mean

The New-Exchange-Girl.

She was born in Lancashire, and coming up to London with the Carrier to get a Service, it was ten to one she had not been pickt up by some Bawd, they continually laying wait at all the Inns in the Town, for the coming up of handsom Countrey Girles It was the hap of a Semstress in the New-Exchange to meet with her, and seeing her to have a well featured, and well coloured Countenance, took so great a liking to her, that she took her home with her. She knew well enough what she did, being not ignorant, that a handsom young Girl in a Shop, will attract as many Beauty-hunters to her Shop, as sweet things will draw Flies to a Confectioners Stall. She had not lived long with her Mistress, but as she was envyed by her Neighbouring Apprentices, so she was admired and courted by many of the Gallants of that end of the Town. Her Mistress, who found the sweetness of the in-comes of her new-come Servant, gave her much more liberty and, countenance, than she had done any before, cloathing her in as good a habit, as might become such an excellent face, and the esteem that Gentlemen of Quality had for it.

She had by this time purged her self of the barbarisms and impurities of the English tongue, by the daily converse she had with the Ladies, and Gallants of the Court, and had learnt decorums in Carriage, as well as elegancies in Language. Her Mistress was much too blame in suffering her to wait upon Gentlemen at their Chambers, with Shirts, Sleeves, Cravats, &c. though it is customary, yet dangerous to those that would preserve their Honour. By which means, she had so many temptations offered to her, that the like would have taken in the Maiden Fortress of a Vestal Votaress. They courted her with those Golden showers, which infallibly conquer, (having Jove for their President,) no wonder then if she yielded to her over-comers.

This still brought in more Grist to her Mistress's Mill, who gave her good council to have a care of the Temptations of the Flesh; but she could discern by her Eyes her advice came too late: and knowing that Trade would not last long, gave her in a manner her own Freedom, asking her leave, when she went abroad; but yet her Mistress was not such a fool, but she knew well enough to whom she granted liberty to go abroad with her Servant; good Customers you may be sure. There was not a day hardly past, but she was Coacht; but at length she hackney'd it so long, that she got an ambling Nagg. Being recovered, she scorn'd to be dismaid for one hard bargain, but ventured at it again, and again; and now she was grown to that pass, she cared not, but cryed, Clap that Clap can, bearing in among them, firing Gun for Gun.

Her Mistress having reapt the utmost of her Harvest, advised her to keep in till she was well, and being so, make the best and quickest advantage she might of getting a Husband, for she told her, that she must stay with her no longer, she being so great a scandal to her Profession. My young Gentlewoman was over-ruled, courted, and a little after marryed, about two years before our Soldier of Fortune came acquainted with her: he now re-inforces his suit, and tells her withal, if she will be ruled by him, they should both march off together; it was agreed on, that she should observe her opportunity, and take what Money and Goods of her Husbands she could, and come to him; which accordingly she did: and now being both glad, that the one should be freed from a cross-grain'd impotent Husband, and the other from a jealous deformed, ill-condition'd Wife, they both went to the West of England, not intending then to leave the Kingdom; but finding a Ship ready to Sail for Barbadoes, and judging themselves not secure, till they got thither, or to some other forreign Plantation, they resolved to go, carrying Money enough to pay their Passage, and Goods to live ashore on.

But let me not forget my promise, but give you an account of the rest in order; the next are,

Two Button-makers.

They are hardly worth taking notice of, and therefore I shall not much trouble my self about them. They were brought up in London , and therefore they were capable of driving a Trade in the Countrey: and indeed they were forced to make that their refuge or Sanctuary. For in the place aforesaid, they were known to be such notorious Night-walkers, and Pick-pockets, (for which they had been so often in those two fomous Universities, New-gate and Bridewell,) that they resolved to go else where; making choice of Excester , a place so remote from their former habitations and acquaintance, that they assured themselves of a new credit, amongst a People so altogether unknown to them.

There they took a Chamber, (lying together) and went for two Sisters; the noise of two London-Button-makers coming down to inhabit in that City, quickly reacht the ears of the Shop-keepers therein, and that word, London, carried so great a sway and esteem with it, that they were presently imployed, and had much work a days. A young Mercer, newly set up, fell in love with one of them, and prosecuted his suit so closely, that though with much difficulty (she giving him many repulses to make him the more eager in the pursuit) yet he at length obtained his desires, and so fond he was of his enjoyments, that his business must needs lie at six and sevens, since all the day after, he imployed his time in her company. She like a Cunningham, at last fearing the Proverb would prove true, (Hot love grows soon cold,) she pretended her self with child, which in two months time grew so monstrously fast, that he must believe what his eyes saw so apparently. His Breech made Buttons too now, and not knowing how to save his Reputation, he consulted his best wits again, and again; at length found this the only expedient to preserve his endangered credit, that is, to give her a good sum of Money, with which he might perswade her to remove into the Country. He propounded this to her, (and although she was ready to leap out of her skin to see her design take so good effect) yet she would give no hearing to it but falling on her knees, beg'd that he would save hers, and his own Reputation, by making her an honest Woman, that is, marrying her: if he would not condescend to that, she would admit of no other terms, but what sudden death should make her the overture of.

Some days he spent in perswading her: getting her good will; he gave her a sum of Money to accommodate her lying In, in the Countrey; giving a good part to her Comrade, and ordering her to stay till her return, which should be speedy; she took leave of her Lover, as if she had been doing the like to her Soul going a Voyage to the other world. But she was no sooner out of sight, but she re-assumed her former jolly temper; coming to an Inn, (where she was to lie that night) she there miscarried of a Cushon. To carry on her project with the least suspition, the next day she went for Bristol , where staying four or five days to recreate her self, and see the curiosities of that City, she removed to another, from thence to a third, fourrh, and fifth only to prolong time, that she might not be suspected on her return. Six weeks being expired, she shap't her course homewards, where being arrived, she found her Comrade had not been idle, but had imployed those hands she sat on to a very good advantage.

Her Lover hearing of her return, play'd least in sight; and although he heard that she had cast her Colt, yet would not come nigh her, for fear of paying as dearly for his pleasures, as he had done before; and so resolved to acquit her for ever. Yet his forsaking her did not hinder other Visitants. To conclude, they had cheated so many with the pretence of being with Child, that the younger-Fry were affraid to come near them, being lookt upon by the Town, no other than a couple of subtle Trapans. Their Trade thus miserably decaying, they resolved to trie what effects Night-walking would produce. So stroling about one evening, with their white Aprons spread, as a Flagg of Truce, they walkt a long time before they could meet with any fit for the purpose; in short, when it was grown late, they met with a Gentleman coming out of a Tavern, more than half drunk, whom they pickt up, the bargain was quickly struck, and into an Entry they went, one of the Sisters standing at door as a Centinel; at length (quoth she within) Good Sir, let me go, the Watch is coming; which he hearing, stept nimbly into the street, because he would not be found with Females in so suspected a place; casting his head about, he perceived his two Wenches make more than ordinary haste, he presently suspected that they had shew'd his Pockets foul play; wherefore putting his Hands therein, found his Watch missing; he straighwayes ran after them, and just overtook them, as he met with the Watch, by whom they were secured, and being searcht, the Watch was found; the dext day they were carried before a Justice, who upon Examination, finding them guilty, committed them to Goal. At the Sizes, such a general complaint (besides this theft) came in against them by the sober Citizens, for debauching and ruinating their Servants, that they were both sentenced to be transported. The same Sizes was doom'd another after the same manner, and for the same practice, whom whosoever marries, hath got a Wife with a treble trade, a Whore, a Thief, and a Stockin-mender; but fearing, least if I handle her I shall offend your noses, I shall pass her by, and present your nostrils with the perfume of

An Orange-Wench.

Fair Oranges,—Fine Lemmons,—a cunning Slut, who by a fifteen years practice, had got her Trade to her fingers ends! She used that cry in the streets of London at first, to get her a livelihood; but her Face had so cryed her up, that her Gallants would have decryed her Trade, as too mean a thing for her to follow; but she would not be peswaded to it, fearing she should be abridged of her Liberty. For whilst she had the liberty of roving every where, she had the priviledged freedom to go boldly into a Tavern, where she not only sold her Ware, but had the convenience to truck for a Commodity of another sort. She was witty, and very well furnisht with a drolling Common-Place-Book, out of which she could suit any merry discourse whatsoever. By which means her company was so generally coveted, that she could not pass the streets, but some or other out of a Tavern-Window would call her up, who would empty her Basket, fill her skin with Wine, only that they might make some sport with her. A wealthy old Widower, an Ale-house-keeper, knowing how generally she was belov'd, cared not much to be made a Cuckold, so that he could but increase his Trade, which he knew he should do, if he married her, which he did by a very expensive Courtship, she not caring if he had spent every groat.

She lived with him some years, in which time they had got a world of Money, the house being seldom empty before, but since her coming thither, always filled for her sake. The old fool (having now gotten enough) began now to dote on her, and grew so jealous, that he could not abide to see her in any company that was younger than himself, which she not enduring, made up a good Purse of Money, and went into Yorkshire, where attiring her self like a Widdow, every one believed that she was so, and behaved her self so generously in all her deportments, that she soon had Suiters of good quality swarming about her. She was so crafty, that she never countenanced those, who had ever made the least scruple by enquiring what she was, whence she came, what she had, &c. but scorning such enquiries, would sometimes frankly say, when many of them were together; Gentlemen, I wonder you should busie your selves about me, I trouble you not, therefore trouble not me; I intend to borrow no Money of you, and leave you an Estate mortgaged for the payment; I have enough, and will lend you some upon good Security, if that you come for . An old stale Batchelor (a Semi-Usurer) hearing this, strikes in with her, telling her he had Money enough too, (which she had heard before) and that if she pleased, to make a scrutinie into the truth thereof, she might; however he would not question her Estate, but be very well contented, if she had no more than what was on her back; she desired some time to consider on so weighty a matter as Marriage was; not considering before what it meant, however she was alotted a very good Husband, and should she now marry a worse, it would be her hearts-breaking. He promised her every thing so fair, that it cleared up all her doubts, and so they joyned together in a Matrimonial tie.

The Husband she left in London, was not only Horn mad, but stark-mad for the loss of his Wife, and so diligent he was in the search of her, that like Scoggin, looking for a Hare in the Roof of a House leaded, so he sought her not only in places probable, but as unlikely to find her. His enquiry was so indefatigable, that at length he heard that she was in York-shire, and was informed of the place wherein she was. Overjoy'd at the news, he immediately takes horse, end rides away towards her, resolving to forgive her whatever she had done, if she would return with him, not knowing she was married. The old man came just to town as it was her hap to look out of the window; she knew him streight, and was ready to drop down dead, to think what would become of her; but a Womans wit, which is always best at a push, prompted her to call hastily for her Husband, who running to her; What is the matter, said he? O Husband , said she, Do you see yonder Man on Horse-back? Yes, yes, he replyed; then pray thee Sweet heart run quickly and dog him where he Inns; and having so done, return with all the speed you can possibly : never did Foot-boy dispatch a Ladies errand speedier than he; and being returned; Now my dear, said he, I will tell thee how happily things fall out; as I was looking out of that window, I saw that man you dogg'd, I have not seen him these five years before, he was indebted to my Husband in the sum of 300 l. tht Money hath been due long since, and not yet paid, it is thine now, go instantly and arrest him at thine own Suit, I will prove the Debt, his name is — This obedient Coxcomb performed what his Wife desired him to do: This Brother Starling of his being not acquainted in the place, and not being able to produce Bail, was constrained to go to Prison, where we leave him, vowing and protesting he neither knew the Man, nor ever owed in all his life half the sum. In the mean time our Orange-Woman had perswaded her Husband to give her leave to go to London with all speed, and fetch the Bond she had left in a friends hand, and if need required, bring the Witness down; there is no fear Husband, said she, of the Money, for his Estate consists solely in that, imploying it in buying Cattle in Ireland, and transporting them into England; I have laid wait for him many and many a time, but never could meet with so happy an opportunity.

Her Husband poor credulous Gentleman, believed every word she said, and consented to her motion, with much alacrity. The next day the Stage-coach was to set forth, so he went streight and bespake a place, whilst she had fixt every thing for her next dayes journey. That night, when her Husband was fast asleep, she took the Key of his Closet out of his Pocket, and opening it, she unlockt a Cabinet, and took thence a hundred pieces of old Gold, which had lain there many a year undisturbed. In the morning by time, after a great deal of seeming sorrow that she should be thus necessitated to be absent from her dearly beloved Husband, she entred the Coach, and was quickly out of sight. At the first Baiting-stage the Coath came at, she altered her resolution of going for London, telling the Coach man, she had extraordinary business some fifteen miles out of the way, and that if he would drive the Coach that way, she would reward him; he told her it was impossible to be done, (which she knew as well as himself,) But Madam, said he, you have paid the Coach, and you may do as you please.

She hired a Horse presently, and a Man to ride before her, and having rid till it was almost dark, she caused her Man to make what haste he could to the next Inn, pretending she was mistaken in the length of the way. The next morning calling for a Quart of Mull'd Sack, she drank to her Man, making him very merry, and then told him, she was resolved to go for Chester, having business of greater moment to dispatch there first; so giving him a Crown for his own pains, and half a Crown a day, for so long as they should be out, the Fellow was very glad of it, knowing his Master would be pleased with him for so doing. Coming there, she dismissed the Fellow, and hearing there were Ships ready to Sail, the next day she went to Holy-head , and there imbarqu'd for Dublin.

How her two Husbands in her absence agreed I know not; but she no sooner thought her self secure in this strong Countrey, but she appear'd as splendid in Apparel, as the greatest Court-gallant of them all, and with a new Surname, Coacht it with the best of them, and marryed again, (a thing too often practised there) and lived so long there, till she had spent what her Husband had gotten in many years labour; and now when all was gone in a manner, she falls into the acquaintance of a young huffing Blade, who not daring to stay longer in Ireland, (by reason of the many Debts he owed there) perswaded her to go for Bristol with him, where she should have what her heart could desire. Having a greater love for his Person than she had a belief, to what he promised she yielded; and without trifling away time, put their purpose into present practice. Being at Sea, they had like to have split upon the Bishop and his twelve Clerks, (Rocks so called lying to the Southward of Wales,) had she been there lost, any one that knew her life and conversasion, might have lookt on it as a just Judgement, having abused and violated those sacred Laws the Church hath injoyned her to observe by her most detestable Polygamy. However, they were hindred from putting into the Port they were bound to, and instead thereof, arrived at Barnstable; where in a little time after their arrival, he growing weary of her, took every Penny she had, not leaving her wherewithal to discharge her Quarters. She was rightly served, and may all such meet with punishments suitable to their notorious practises. The fear of her Husbands knowing where she was, and the sullenness of her own temper together, (seeing she should be thus outwitted) made her thus resolve the tryal of retrieving her misfortune in a forreign adventure. Almost on the same Basis or Ground-work was founded the desperate resolution of our two Crackt-Maiden-Servants. For the one was tollerably handsom, and thought her self meat good enough for her Master or his Son; The latter of which she liked best, but he fitted her not to her liking; for having gotten her Maiden-head, (by promising her Marriage) and with Child to boot, marryed another; She being foolish, and having no friends to advise her how to compensate her loss by suing him; she only took pet, put finger in eye, and vow'd she would never see him; a shrewd threat to one that was glad to be rid of her. Her Companion with her knowing her resolution, having staid to the age of near forty, and not one so much as proffering to kiss her, (for indeed had you seen her when she had drest her self with all the advantages her utmost Art could use, you must have turned your head aside.) I say having lived thus long a Maid, (I dare swear for her) and never expecting to have to do with any Christian, she had some hopes she might be a Subject fit enough for some barbarous Black Diabolical Infidel, to get Cannibals upon. And now having given you an account of what Cattle we had aboard, except only what I have purposely left to bring up the Reer, and they are four

Common Prostitutes.

Not to describe them particularly, but all of their Function in general; They are things of prodigious strength, which is sufficiently manifested in the ruin of the strongest Man, and backsliding of the wisest Man. I hardly know, or have heard of any whom they have not staggerd, excepting Job, who firmly stood maugre the Devil, and his Wife.

In the faces of the common Traders, by diligent search, you may find some raggs of overworn Beauty, like old Cloaths in Brokers windows, to make you believe, that there are better Wares within; Yet he that trades with them, is like to have a bad bargain, for she can sell him nothing but the Pox, or Repentance. As for their upper parts, they are the Shops of Cupid, and their lower parts are his Warehouse. Length of time makes them turn Bankrupts, spoiling their Game by wrinckling their faces, which paint must rectify, but so hardly, that with all their black Spots and Patches they look but like a resty Gamon of Bacon stuck with Cloaves, scarce so beautiful, but not half so savory; coming to this age, she is like a rotten stick, only fit to kindle green ones. In short, they are a loathsom stinking Carreon, too unclean to enter into Heaven, too diseased to continue longer on Earth; the shame and stain of her Sex, the scorn of wise-men, and utter ruine of fools. These two Brase of Whores were taken up at Excester upon the like account as the former Females were, for Whoring, Filching, and debauching, and so suffered the same doom with the rest. That famous City since it had a name, had never been so pester'd before with such a brood of Cockatrices. It is true, your London Doxies will go down into the Countrey sometimes for their pastime, with their Cullyes, but then where e're they come, it is but a touch and away; but these deluding and destroying Syrens, staid so long, till they were ready to spawn, and had not their own too publick Roguery detected them, they in a little time longer might have infected half the Countrey.

[Our Master having intelligence ...]

Our Master having intelligence of this brave booty, rode to Excester, where agreeing for this parcel of Cattle, he took them all down with him to Barnstable, shipping them immediately upon his arrival; not long after my Rogueship (being nipt in the Budd of my roguish designs, my forward prancks shewing what a dangerous fellow I might prove if I were let alone to grow up in them, was committed to the custody of the Master of the Ship, to carry me with the rest to some remote place far enough distant from England, that it might not be disturbed with the noise of our lewd and vitious Practises. I had not been many hours among them, before I began to take special notice of my new Comrades, and not many days e're I drew such remarkable observations from them all, as to give you this account of them, the major part whereof, is the extract of their own confessions; and now I shall proceed as to our Voyage.

CHAP. XII.

 

He is made a Cabbin-Boy, and shews what is the duty thereof; A pleasant drunken encounter between Himself, little Miss, and two other supposed Rivals; his Crime, and Punishment. He returns for England, and coming to Gravesend, he discovers a notable trick of a Justice in discovering one that usually stole his Wood; Also, an incomparable Adventure of a young Woman, and himself in one Hammock together.

Never had villainous Exiles such a fair Passage as we had, and to speak the truth, though nothing could have daunted me, yet the calmness of the Sea, and the clearness of the weather, did very much encourage me to be a Sea-man. My Master was a very facetious merry man, and one of no mean understanding, who seeing the freeness of my jocular humour, did not hinder the care of his business, he acknowledged to have a benefit in me, which few others received from their Servants, not only injoying my labour and pains-taking, but receiving a divertisement in the execution thereof. I waited on my Master diligently, swabb'd his Cabbin daily, made his Bed, cleansed the House of Office often, and who so ready as I to fetch the Victuals abase, and above all things minded my Masters ringing the Bell, as it was my duty, so it was my discretion and prudence; for had I at any time been playing the Rogue out of hearing the Bell, if it rang in that interval, I was assuredly drubb'd; for faults of a higher nature, I was laid over a Gun and lasht, or tyed by the Thumbs and whipt with a Cat of Nine Tails. My Lodging was in the Steerage near the Bulkhead, that I might be ready and within hearing: And though I was so very a Rogue ashore, yet I was a man of credit aboard, for my Master trusted me with all the choice comforts which concerned his Life, committing to my charge his Wines, both Spanish and French, with Brandy, and several cordial Waters, Sugar, all sorts of Spices; Tobacco, and what not, expedient for a long Voyage. Such regard he had of me, that he taught me to Write, and Cypher, which for so short a time I understood so well, as I became the wonder of every one in the Ship; Seeing me so forward, he did put me on the copying of his Journals, taught me how to take off the Log, to take the height of the Sun at twelve a Clock, by which we know what Latitude we are in; the knowledge of these things I gained not under three or four Voyages, but in this first expedition I could run up to the Main-top, and furl a Sail, though in a stress of weather.

I minded so much my business, that I seldom visited any of the Passengers I formerly described, and had almost totally forgot my little Miss, but perceiving my Masters former kindness to them, was converted in harsh and rough usage, tumbling them like Dogs into the Hold, when sometimes they offered to come upon the Decks to Air themselves, I could not but pity them; and to Buoy up their Spirits, I would frequently give them a Dramm, to be sure my Miss had a treble portion, and would often steal her fresh meat, than which I know not what is more valuable in a long run at Sea.

I acted not my business so closely, but that my Master discovered the goodness of my nature to my fellow-travellers; however finding no considerable loss and decay of his Liquors, only threatned me for that time what wonderful punnishment he would inflict upon me, if ever he catcht me in the like again: I thinking he had but jested, and trusting to my wit for the secret management of the project, and the excuse thereof when it was effected by the instigation of two lusty young fellows, I was induced to steal from my Master a Bottle of Sack, and getting into a close corner with my aforementioned Doxy, whom I had singled out, and these two fellows, we made a shift to drink it off; they prompted me to fetch another, but I would not yield, till I had first gone aloft, to see whether the Coast was clear; finding my Master asleep in the great Cabbin, I got out a Bottle of French-Wine, which we dispatcht as we had done the other; not satisfyed with this, they perswaded me by all means to fetch another, and with that they would be contented; I would not condescend in any case, till the witch my Wench (that by this time was got above half drunk) intreated me with prithee do, what will you denie me? and then I could hold out no longer; but being by the Liquor in a fit mood to do any roguery, I promised them to return with some more with all expedition; now I began to consider that what we had drank already, was not so strong as Brandy, and therefore lookt on that Liquor most convenient for our drunken purpose; I opened a Guard-de-vines, and taking out almost a Quart Bottle, I made what hast I could to my seasoned Drunkards, who were eagerly gazing for me; but finding them too petulantly familiar with my Mistress, I had once a mind to have staved the Bottle, but that I should loose my share of the Brandy, but dissembling well my passion, I drank on with them; but I by reason of the tendnrness of my age, and my Female friend being not accustomed to drinking, were not able to hold out with them; the fumes ascending into my head, I thought my self as good as any man, (judge you whether I was not a proper one at fourteen years of age?) and would not take an affront from any, and so charging them with the abuse they had done me in being too sawcy with my concerns, I made no more ado, but fell foul with them both, my little Virago seeing me ingaged, was resolved not to be idle, but with the Glass Bottle lays one of them over the Cox-comb, which breaking, cutt his pate, the fight of his blood made him more afraid than hurt, and fearing least he should bleed himself to death, acquits our company, and ran with all speed to the Chyrurgeon, in the mean time we made our party good with the other, and so pounded him, that he was glad to shoot the pit, and leave us sole Conquerors of the Field; having now no other enemy in sight to contend with us, I took my stout Amazon by the hand, and led her up aloft in triumph; the Sea-men were ready to die with laughter to see how we had mall'd those two Boobies; but their laughter increast to that excess, that it wakened my Master to see me and my Damsel strutt and reel to and fro the Decks, bidding defyance to them all, daring the best of them to touch her upon their perils; as I was thus Lording it, my Master made his appearance, who was so surprized he knew not what to say, neither was it to any purpose, for my Damsel was as merry as a Hawk, who nothing but sang whilst I Don-Drunken-Furioso was storming like a Raging Turk. My Master perceiving that nothing would appease my wrath, nor silence the harmonious tongue of my tippled Madam, commanded us to be clapt both in the Bilboes, and there to continue till we were a little more sober. We soon talkt our selves asleep, and slept as soundly as if we had lain on a Feather-bed, awaking, we wondred to see our selves in that condition, and could not imagin how we came there but by some inchantment; but our admiration and amazement were soon converted into something of another nature, by my Masters sending for us; coming before him, there did I see my two Antagonists, the sight whereof immediately informed by memory with the precedent days proceedings; my face did presently discover my guilt.



Heu quam difficile est crimen non prodere vultu? Alas how hard it is for any face
To hide a crime if it hath any Grace?

And had not our countenances betrayed us, there were too many apparent evidences for our conviction. Now did I see my quondam loving friend lay aside the pleasantness of his former looks, and assume the severe gravity of a Judges aspect, and having dismist my fighting Madam, sentenced me and my two combatants to be that instant conveyed to the Capston, which was done accordingly, and there were we seized, inclosed within a Hoop, and a Cat of nine tails delivered into each our hands; this being done, said our Master, Let me see how you will fight now? if you do not lash one another soundly, I will have those that shall; so commanding the Capston Bar to be turned round, to work we went; I laid it on gently at first on him that was before me, but finding the smart of the blows increase, and the lashes multiply in strength as well as quantity, by him that was behind me, I spared my fore-man not a jot, but as fast and as smartly as I could, I jerkt him about; this caused him to redouble his blows on the other, be again on me, and so we went round in that unmerciful manner, that our Master out of meer pity was forc'd to release us.

The severity of this punishment (for none could have had the heart to have whipt us as we whipt our selves,) cured me of my Drunken fits for that whole Voyage, and so reduced me to order and civility, that I was once more receiv'd into his favour. And now I grew so cautious in the disposal of those Liquors of life, that none participated with me in their injoyments, but my Master and his friends, who was a severe check over me in what he had committed to my charge. Immediately after our arrival at Barbadoes, having complemented the Island with the usual ceremony of firing some Guns, a swarm of Boats from thence settled about our Ship, the Planters therein boarded us on every side, as if they intended to have made lawful Prize of us. Our Commodities betwen Decks were forthwith rubbig'd, (rummig'd I mean) and exposed to the view of the Buyer; they need not question the goodness of the Ware, since it hath been sufficiently tryed, and could not want a probatum on the report of hundreds. Nothing troubled me more than to see my young Female Comrade truckt for Tobacco, the exchange of equal levity; and as the one is fit only to be burnt, so in time may the other, though so green one would imagine nor capable of entertaining a flame. They were all disposed of in a very short time, and those that despaired of ever having Husbands in England, had them here readie made to their hands; and they, with others found in this remote place a conveniency for raising a new credit and reputation, which they had irrecoverably lost elsewhere.

All the time that we lay here at Ankor I was not permitted to go ashore, a thing that griev'd me to the heart, especially having not the benefit of others, who had the freedom of going ashore and refresh themselves with fresh Provisions. Our Sea-men that were on Ship-board would have the same conveniencies as if they were where properly they might be had, but were so inhumane to me, that I must eat what the Ship afforded, or fast; this they did, that I might adventure another whipping by stealing my Masters Liquors, knowing how strongly I longed to taste of fresh meat: not a bit went down my throat but what I purchased with the hazzard aforesaid; but my Masters carowsing at the Indian Bridge, made him forget what was exhausted out of his Cabbin, and so I came off undiscovered.

Having taken in our Loading proper for our Transportation, as Tobacco, Indigo, Cotton, and Sugar, (which last sweetned all the bitter Pills of affliction which I had swallowed) we set Sail for England, and with a prosperous Gale, and good weather, we safely arrived in the Downs, where lying a small time, we came away to Graves-end, and there we staid two Tides. My Master going ashore, I begg'd him that he would let me go with him, having not set foot on Land in so long time; the consideration therof perswaded him to grant my request; and taking an opportunity to slip from my Master, I chanc'd to happen into an House, where, at that little time of my staying happen'd a remarkable passage. There was a Justice of Peace that lived not far from this House, who had a Wood-yard adjoyning hereunto: the near adjacency of this Fewel tempted my Landlord to purloin from thence, that he might save some expence in firing; but he did it so often, that he caused the Justice to suspect he was grosly abused by some or other thereabout; and that he might find out the offender, he ordered his Servants to bore large holes in some of the Loggs, and fill them with Gun-powder, plugging up the same holes very close again; which was performed according to instruction, and the design took its desired effect; for our Landlord according to his wonted custom, came into the Yard, and happened to take those very Loggs, and carryed them home to use them as he had done the rest; his Pot was over the Fire, and a Spit before it, in order to a Supper bespoke by some strangers. I was smoaking by the fire side, (that you may know I was not ill bred,) and had a Pot of Ale in my hand sitting very near the Fire, my Landlord eagerly bid me remove farther off that he might have room to supply his decaying Fire, (it was well for me;) having laid on those Logs, in a little time after came an old Woman (whose ancient and deformed withered face had made her a long time suspected for a Witch,) who begged heartily for an Alms, but such was the cruel hard heartedness of our Landlord, that he not only denyed her, but rudely thrust her from the dore, the poor helpless Woman durst not openly exclaim, but as she was muttering to her self her great discontent, the Fire got to the Powder inclosed in the Wood aforesaid, and being so straightly and throughly confin'd, burst the Logs like a Granado, tearing the Meat off the Spit, blowing the Pot off the Hooks, and broke some small matter of the Brick-work of the Chimney. My loss consisted in the dropping of my Pot of Ale with the suddain astonishment; but my Landlord lookt like a fellow distracted out of his wits; recollecting himself, and seeing what dammage was done him, concluded this Begger-woman was the cause of all this mischief, believing her now to be what she had been a long time suspected for a Witch, and therefore leaves his House confusedly, (which gave me an opportunity to trip off and leave my reckoning unpaid,) and getting a Constable, seiz'd this ignorant piece of antiquity, carrying her before the Justice that had lost his Wood from time to time; My Landlord hereupon largely acquainted his Worship the sad hap that had befallen him, and the grounds of his suspecting this Woman; which when the Justice had heard to the full, he then understood who was the Wood-stealer, and so acquitting the old Woman, but committed my Landlord, who must now pay for his Children sitting by other Peoples Fires.

I had not so much Money but that I was very glad to save my small reckoning; returning to my Master, he was very jolly, resolving to lie ashore that night in Graves-end, and commanded me to attend him; not a drop of Wine would go down with him I observed without his Landlady, which was a very lovely Woman, had she not been a little too fat: Her Husband was the absolute picture of a Cuckold; it is strange that a man should read that name so legibly in any ones face. Night coming on, my Master seem'd to be more drunk than he was, that he might the better excuse his so soon going to bed, desiring to take his repose; after I had pull'd off his Shooes and Stockins, and he had all undrest himself, being between the Sheets, I tuckt in the Bed-cloaths about him, and in so doing, took an occosiion to meet with his Breeches, and diving into the Pockets. I conveyed away two half Crowns, and so shutting the Chamber door, I left him. Going into the Kitchen, I called for Wine, some upon my Masters account, the rest upon my own charge; It was my good fortune to be alone with the Maid, all the rest of the Family (being late) were gone to bed. The Maid (like the rest of the worst of Housewives, who work in the night and play in the day,) was making at that time a Smock for her self, and as I guess sate up somewhat the later, because she would completely finish it; I had made my self familiar with her, and taking this advantage to raise some petulant discourse; Is this your Smock? said I, Yes, she replyed; then sure, said I, you are very lavish of your Cloath to make it so wide; I will lay you five shillings, and you shall hold stakes, that it will contain us both, and to spare: How, said she, I will lay you that wager if I never engage in another; But the difficulty lay in this, that she saw there was a necessity that she must uncase as well as my self, and therefore seemed very unwilling so to do; but that she must loose the Crown if she did not, so she consented having the Smock on, I crept into it, and absolutely cased my Arms in the same sleeves; hers were in before, my head peeping out of the bosom; but endeavouring to dis-ingage by the same means we had intangled our selves, we found it impossible, our Arms being extended like the wings of a Spread Eagle, nor could we contract or draw them to our bodies, in this plight we were in a good while, not knowing what to resolve on. At length with one joint consent we raised our Arms to the Tenter-hooks of the Shelf, (for though I was young I was tall, and so was she,) and hanging the Sleeve thereon, we pull'd, thinking to draw it off that way; but striving with what strength we had left, we pull'd the Shelf down, and all the Pewter ratling about our ears: This noise awakened the Man of the House, and thinking to jog his Wife, found no such thing beside him; this startled him more: however he was resolved to see what it was, and therefore struck a light; but recalling himself as he was descending the stairs, he returned, thinking it would be safer (if Theeves were below,) to take my Master with him, and therefore goes to his Chamber door, which he found open, and entring the room, found his Wife in bed with him fast asleep; whilst he was about to waken them, we below were struggling to get loose, and stumbling upon the Shelf fall'n, we fell over it upon the Dishes, which made as great a noise as the former; this hastened him to wake them, reproving his Wife more for her carelesness than looseness, and telling them there were Theeves in the House; my Master got up and went down with his Landlord to see what the matter was in the Kitchen: They had no sooner entred the door, but they were strangely amazed to see one Body with two Heads; approaching nearer, my Master knew one Head to be his mans, and the other to be his Landlords Maids: with much difficulty they shook this Flesh Pudding out of the Bagg; it being mid-night we were not examined then but deferred till the next morning: in the meantime they consulted together; and it was agreed upon between our Landlord and his Wife, that conditionally my Master would forgive me, they would their Maid, and never fooloshly proclaim their shame to the world which now lay in their powers to conceal. This adventure staid us longer ashore than we intended, but at length getting aboard, we sailed up to Eriff, where we Ankored two or three days for some private business our Master had, &c. and from thence we went directly up the River, and came to an Ankor over against Shadwel-Dock.

CHAP. XIII.

 

He buyes a Horse in Smithfield, he is basely cheated in the goodness by the Horse-Courser, the manner how; he descants on his own ill Horseman-ship as he is a Sea-man. He rides to Maiden-head, his Landlady looseth a Diamond Ring, he invents an incomparable exploit to restore it her again.

My Master being an eminent Sea-man, and faithful to his trust, had no sooner cleared his Ship, but had immediately another Voyage offered him to Virginia, returning home in safety; the next he made was to the Straights; I was three several times with him at Legorne, twice in the West Indies, and twice at the Canaries; by this time my Apprentiship was expired, which I went through with so much satisfaction to my Master, notwithstanding a thousand Rogueries I committed in that time, that in our next Voyage which was to Guinny, I was advanced to the dignity of a Cockswain. Whereupon the Long-boat was committed to my Charge, and when any occasion served I had my Crew always ready for the Skiff; I understood my place quickly, and behaved my self in it, that our Boat-Swain dying, I was constituted in his place; now was my care increased, for I had charge of all the Rigging, Masts, and Sails with many other matters of consequence. I have heard my Master say twenty times, that he had rather hear me when we were weighing Ankor (our Men being at the Capston) cry heave clearly my boys, than a noise of Musick, for I had a strong yet pleasant voice, and I tun'd it to some purpose when the Ankor was almost a peek. In this imployment I made two Voyages to Guinny, the last thereof was so successful that I was resolved upon my return to take the pleasures of the Land, and no places would serve my turn, but those wherein I had received so much disgrace and punishment.

In Smithfield London I bought an Horse, he did so caper with the fellow that rid him, that I feared this pamper'd beast would be too skittish for a Sailer, that never bestrid any living creature; the Horse cost me six Pound and a Crown, I could not get the punctuality of his rogueship to bate me the odd Money, though in three days time forty shillings prov'd the utmost value of this great bargain. It was a very fair day when I set forward in my journey towards Bristol, and because the streets were then dry, and no symptomes in the Heaven of any approaching Rain, I vainly thought there would be no occasion for Boots those intollerable clogs of a nimble footed Sea man. I mounted not without some dread and fear that this prancing Palfrey would run away with his Master, but contrary to all expectation, I found the creature calm enough, being ready to lie down as I was getting up; much ado I had to get him to go till I had almost buryed my Heel-spur in his belly, and then he made a shift to trot; but Founder-foot on a suddain running a head, I was like to have been overset. The dulness of my Horse did shew what an Ass I was to be so cheated; I might have known that within less than an hour after I had bought him, for instead of Excrements, he evacuated an Eel at his posteriors, which I believe was conveyed into him alive by the subtle Horsecourser, to make him for the present more lively and sprightful. With much difficulty I got him to Maiden-head that day; the next proving raining, my business did not require such haste, but that I might stay a day or two for fair weather.

I had Money enough, the fight whereof did strangely quicken the attendance of the Servants of the House, and my liberal expence commanded both my Landlord and Landladies company; and that I might continue their society, I was incessant in the calling for Wine. My Landlady was pre-ingaged in the company of several Gallants, so that I was like to have little of it, had it not been for an accident that befell her, which brought her into my Room where my Landlord was. It seems one of the Gentlemen espyed a Ring on her Finger with a very fair Rose of Diamonds in it, and desiring her to let him see it for the excellency thereof; she condescended, continuing her conceited discourse, which she raised on purpose, to shew what an esteem she had for her imaginary wit, and fancy; this Gentleman delivered the Ring to another, he to a third, that man conveyed it to a fourth that were troubled with the same curiosity; but at the last it came into the hands of one that was very loath it should go any further, since it had almost past round; She being this while so busie in her tittle tattle, that she neither minded how it was canvast about, or in the least mist it off her Finger: She left the room several times, and returned; but in fine she found the loss of her Ring, not knowing whether it was restored to her by that person she lent a fight thereof, and had dropt it, or if not restored, she was ignorant of the Man, and therefore durst not tax any one particularly. I have known many a thing, as a Silver Tobacco box, &c left carelesly upon a Table which hath been taken up in jest, but kept in earnest.

She was so puzzled she knew not what to do; and not knowing how to remedy her self, she was resolved to play the perfect Woman, sit down and cry; which she did in that pitiful manner, that I admired how any mans heart could be so hard, not to exchange a few inconsiderable Diamonds for so many inestimable Pearls that dropt from her eyes. Every one stiffly denyed the unworthiness of the detention, and seemed somewhat displeased that their glowing gallantry should be suspected of an act so ungentile and unhandsom. Seeing there was no help, and she could not conceal the loss from her Husband, she came where we were, that we might in her sad relation commiserate and condole her great affliction. I gave much heed to every circumstance of her doleful story; and minded it so well, that I fancy'd I had a project in my head which would give her assistance. Come Madam, said I, there is a Plot which I have just now contrived, which if it take effect, you shall give me a Bottle of Canary, if not, it will be no harm for you to make a tryal . She was very glad to hear of any proposition that might carry in it the hopes of getting her Ring again, and therefore greedily promised me any thing. Why then said I, Go into your former company, but first dry your eys, and express all seeming joy imaginable, and tell those that are inquisitive as to the cause of this suddain alteration, that you have found your Ring again, and then mark diligently that man who cunningly conveys his hand into his own Pocket, my life for you that Man hath the Ring. Following my advice, she re-entred her former Room, and counterfeiting an excessive joy; O Gentlemen your pardon, said she, I have found my Ring! Observing the company heedfully, she perceiv'd one stole down his hand into his Pocket, to feel whether the Ring was there, imagining, upon the hearing what she said, his Pocket had been pickt. Where is the Ring I pray Madam, said one, and where did you find it? Here Sirs, said she, have I found it, for this Gentleman hath now the Ring in his hand, which she forcibly drew out of his Pocket, and so the Ring appeared to his great shame and discredit. Her gratitude for my successful council did that night so Sack the Garrison of my understanding, that all my Senses pro tempore suffer'd in their general devastation.

CHAP. XIV.

 

He is like to be robb'd in Maiden head Thicket. He tells a notable story of a Tapster and another at Play in Redding. At Newberry, a Horse which he rode upon Tryal in the Streets, ran away with him unpaid for; at Bristol he ran away with a pair of Boots then wanting them; he rides for Excester, where he won a considerable sum of his Host at Play.

The great store of Rain that fell, and made the High-ways like Hasty-Pudding, by which means though I rid in Shooes & Stockins, yet I was sufficiently be booted with dirt. I rid over the Common melancholy alone, but coming to Maiden-head Thicket, there was company enough such as I liked not by any means, and now Gramercy Horse, for had not he looked as scurvily as I rid bootlesly scandalous, I had undoubtedly been rob'd; never was poor Horse, and beastly Man so survey'd before, by Devils I think, for their Faces by their Vizard-Masques seemed every whit as black. Escaping that danger, I got the second days journey to Redding, alighting, I fell all along, for I had kickt away my Leggs in riding thither. Never did I find the difference till now of riding on a Yard-arm, and on the sharp ridg'd back of a surfeited Jade; I had not so much skin left upon my Breech as would make a white patch for an Ethiopian Lady of Pleasure. Here I lay three days to recover the dammage my posteriors had sustained by riding my wooden Horse. In which time I observed but little remarkable, but a Tapsters Playing with a fellow of the Town for Money in a little By-Alehouse, where was sold incomparable Ale, which I found out by the information of a Cobler, the reflection of whose face would have afforded light enough to an Ale-house at Midnight.

I was a spectator on their Play, and glad I was of this opportunity to divert my self in a strange place. The Tapster in a little time had lost to the other the price of 2 Barrels of Beer, which so enraged him, it being his all, that nothing could perswade him but that he was cheated of his Money, that he napt on him, and I know not what, and swore that he would have every penny of his Money before he should stir from the place. The other told him that he had won it fairly, and therefore would as surely keep it; hereupon the Tapster struck up his heels, and to work he went with him; the fellow seeing his drift that he would dispossess him of his Money, got as much as he could privately out of his Pocket, and clapt it into his mouth cramming it almost full. The Tapster was amazed to find so little in his Pockets, and therefore made all the privy search he could, which was all to no purpose, so that he concluded the fellow was little less than a Conjurer; after that he had tired himself with beating and kicking his Carkass, he did let him rise; the fellow for all his seeming resolution at first took this basting very patiently, and would have been gone willingly to avoid the second part of the same tune, had not the Tapster laid hold on him, saying, Nay faith t'other box in the ears and 'tother kick on the breech, and go and be damn'd, so lifting his hand up, gave him such a cuff on the face, that by the noise of what dropt out of his mouth, I verily believed he had not only struck out all his teeth, but had also fractur'd in pieces his jaw-bones; but I soon was convinced of the contrary, when I lookt on the ground, for there lay the Money scattered which in his mouth he had secured. I never stood considering what was to be done, since I saw a little time was soon lost, so that blowing out the Candle, I fell a scrambling with the Tapster, who had got the start of me; however I made my party good with him, and was not behind with him in my share, and so slipt out leaving the poor fellow to hold his bleeding chops, which were cut through by a piece of Money, and the Tapster in tenebris to sum up his losses. Leaving this Town I found that I had more Money going out of it than I brought into it, and so I merrily rode on to Newberry. Here my jaded Beast gave up the Ghost, it was time for us to part, for we were both weary of one the other. Money soon procured me the sight of another, but exceeding different from the former, as the one was exceeding dull and heavy, this was all air, and fiery, no ground would hold him as it is usually said; this Horse was brought me to look on, the Seller riding him in my sight with all the studied advantages a double Jury of Jockies could invent; dismounting, I was desired to make tryal of him my self, which I had no mind to do, for I dislik'd that in him, which another would have liked extremely, his extraordinary mettle: however, that I might not be laught at, I adventured to cross his back, but I was scarce settled in the Saddle, when this understanding Beast knowing by my fitting him, that he had a foolsh and unskilful governour to deal withal, grew head-strong, flew away with me like lightning, for my part I thought I had got the Devil between my leggs, and that I was riding Post upon some Hellish design. I knew quickly whom I had to deal withal, a thing that would have his will, and therefore thought it a piece of imprudence to curb his extravagant cunning; knowing well that that pace would not last always.

I gave him his head, let him go which way, and as fast as he pleased; in troth he was better acquainted with the Road than his Master, and would not be perswaded out on't by any such ignorant Hawl-bowling as my self; that night my Horse, and I, (for I must give his Horseship the preheminence) came to Malbrough; entring the Town, he went directly to his Inn, and was known to the Hostler, calling him by some familiar term, I know not what now; and ask't me whether the Horse was mine, I reply'd that he was so, that I had bought him the day before at Newberry : and why should not I own him, since he intitled me to him by the running away with me, not I with him; and since by an unexpected chance I had a benefit thrown into my hands, I was resolved to make use of it, and so I did for the next day, very early I rode away with him for Bristol, never hearing of the right owner since: his heat and fury by this time were pretty well qualified, and could ride him then my own pace, where as before I would willingly condescended to have had a leg or an arm broke, to have secured the bone of me neck.

Bristol, the place of my nativity I entred with a strange confidence, if you remember how I was born, and what roguish exploits I acted during my abode in that City; but as good luck would have it, as length of time had altered my countenance, so it had quite obliterated the memory of my former nefarious actions. Here did I spend my Money in all manner of riot and excess, finding a many jovial boon blades, although for the most part very strict and precise; and though none are permitted any thing late to tipple, yet there is time enough in the day to spend the Cargo of an East India-man, especially if a man hath nothing el e to do. The natural love I had to this place made me insensibly stay much longer than I intended, and though I was some weeks there, nothing occur'd worth the taking notice of, but furnishing my self with a pair of Boots. My money began to grow somewhat low, so that I saw there was a necessity of removing thence; the inconveniencies I was put to for want of Boots, made me resolve to try how I might procure them without either money or credit; I ponder'd with my self, and took many a walk in the Marsh, yet could project no feasible way to obtain my ends. I pitcht upon this at last; evening the account with my Landlord, I caused the Hostler to saddle my Horse and bring him out, mounting, I rid him to a quite contrary part of the City, where I lay, (my lodging was near the Castle, and I rode to the higher end of Ratcliff-street,) near the Gate, I tyed my Horse, and walkt down again backward where I observed some Shooe-makers, entring one of their Shops, I askt the Master thereof to shew me some Boots, he did, and withal fitted me; having both the Boots on I talked to him about the price, I refusing to give so much since they were too dear, be protesting on the other side he would not abate a farthing, stepping to the Threshold (as if I intended to settle my feet in them) I started, though not fairly, running with all my speed, the Shooe-maker thought it was to no boot for him to stand still, whilst I was in action; wherefore leaving his Shop, he betook himself to his heels, crying out as he ran, stop him, stop him; Stop me not, stop me not, quoth I, we run for a Wager, and I give him the advantage of running in Shooes against my self in these heavy Boots; hearing me say so, they gave way, which I repeated to every one as I came near them; they encouraging me, crying out, O brave Boots, O brave Boots; Others animating the other with O brave Shooes, O brave Shooes; getting to my Horse, I mounted him, and without Spurs, for he needed none, I rode clear through Ratcliff-gate, and was soon out of sight, and never since heard of my Shooemaker.

I was resolved to cross the Countrey for my better securing my self from my Horse-merchant, and so directed my Course to Excester, where I was resolved to continue till I had increased my store. I was fearful of venturing on Robbing, and therefore my design was solely bent on cheating, having not been yet arrived to the height of understanding the ruinating Mystery of Gaming; my Landlord was a very jolly associate, and delighted much in my company in that I fitted his humour so well: we often walkt together, and by our converse abroad grew intimately familiar, insomuch that if I were in the house he was hardly out of my company. Frequently we diverted our selves with Tom Fools Games, as they call them, Dubblets, Size Ace, Back Sir Hugh, Catch Dolt, &c. For neither of us could play at any thing else with the Dice, unless Old Sim.

It was my good fortune one day to play with him for a Bottle of Wine at Sise Ace, which I won of him, and after that another, and in conclusion so many, that we were forced to call for assistance, which we could not want long, if Men in this latter age did not Apostatize by declining the powerful invitations of good Wine. These Spungers by exhausting our Liquor inflamed the Reckoning, and that still kindled in us a desire to play on: I was the sole Conquerour; and seeing that he could not deal with me for the Reckoning, he propounded to me whether I would play with him for a Tester; I seeing how vext he was that he had lost so many Bottles, consented to humour him in any thing that was reasonable, not believing but that fortune would not withdraw her wonted favours from me. He loosing still, from Six pence, we doubled the stakes, and to be short, we gradually augmented them till we playd for an Angel a Game, (may they always be tutelary to me, and be my Guardians from the insufferable torments of a despicable necessity,) from an Angel, to a Piece, till I had left him not a Piece to play with me, having won threescore and upward. Being a young Man, he begg'd of me to conceal his loss, least by the Proclaiming my good success, I detriment his credit; for he was so rational as to know that Gaming, as it surely stabs a mans Reputation, so in process of time it will cut the throat of his Estate, though very considerable.

I promised him I would do it, though to no purpose, for the Standers by were the Publishers of those ill tidings, which will spread abroad themselves like a Pestilence. Now I thought it highly requisite to put my self into a better garb, and invest my self with such ornaments as might become a Gentleman, which I intended to personate. I accommodated my self with a Sword, and did not forget Spurs to my new Boots. Being thus bravely equipt Cap a pee; I grew weary of this City, and so left it, and my Landlord to his better Fortune.

The next place I set up my Standard, was in in Salisbury; my genero s dep rtment and gallant habiliments adapted me for the best of company; and the relations of my Travails, not as a Tarpawlin, but a wealthy young Heir, did infinitely please them: So that if I were in a Coffee-house at any time, though I entred in singly, I should have it fill'd with variety of Guests to hear those admiranda wonderful things that I had observed abroad: I was the mouth of the House, and what I reported, was received as an Oracle, I made two fellows one time confidently believe that Pindennis Castle, if well mann'd and rigg'd, would make a brave Man of War of the First Rate; and that Pen name men maure in Wales, and Hoath in Ireland were near met in consultation how to prevent the turbulency of their Northern neighbourhood from incroaching on their trade of Herring-Fishing.

CHAP. XV.

 

At Salisbury he comes acquainted with a young man, who relates to him the Breviate of his Life, and instructs him in the most usual Games at Dice, with all the subtle deceivers that belong to them, and the dangers that attend them, with a short account of their Practitioners.

My Reputation in this City increased daily, so that I was now at liberty to pick and choose my company, I mean from the middle sort of people, which I knew how to delude, whereas I was not so ignorant but that men of better breeding and learning would by my discolouring Sea-faring hands and illiterate tongue find out the imposture of my crafty pretences. I had a sufficient stock of confidence to manage those natural parts which some (flatteringly I doubt) highly commended. The younger sort of People were the persons I selected to associate my self withal, and had in that little time gain'd so large an interest in them, that he offered me too little I should have thought that would think to buy my Propriety therein for an hundred a year. Hunting and Hawking were my daily Recreations; when we returned home, Drinking and Whoring were our nightly exercises, and because I was a stranger as I had the preheminence in most things, so I always paid the least share of any in the reckoning.

There was one strange Gentleman who usually accompanyed us, whom I particularly observed to have more than common qualification; quick-witted, well spoken, sung incomparably, but had the repute of a notorious Gamester, and well he might, for he had bit both City and Countrey of considerable sums, so that now being generally known for a Rook, none durst play with him, yet fancyed his company very much. This Gentleman singled out, and discourst him throughly as to every thing: And that I might engage him to a greater freedom, I forged several lies, charging him with secrecy; this seeming unbosoming my self, obliged him to give me an account of what he was, and for what reasons he came there in this manner.

Sir, said he, I was formerly an Apprentice in London, and by reason of my Masters covetous and and ill nature and severity from him, I had not served him two years e're I was upon the ramble, (a term of Art frequently used amongst us,) my Parents with some charge and much intreaty sawdred up this first crack; but this sore was not so well cured, but by reason of the inward corruption it broke out again, and now was the malady worse than ever, for my Master would not receive me on any terms notwithstanding the various perswasions of my friends for that purpose. My relations seeing this and being throughly perplext, exercised all their passions on me, and instead of reducing me, took a course to ruine and destroy me: for they seemingly cast me out of all favour, which I judged to be real, and having no other dependance than my Wits (my poverty having frighted all my former friends from coming near me,) I resolved for a sustenance to make what use I could of them.

As long as my Money hasted I frequented all places for Gaming exercises, and now and then some Bawdy-houses in which I had gotten a large acquaintance; but having spent all I had, I could get no credit among them only in one house where they had so much credulity to believe my lies to be infallible Truths, and that I should receive in a little time those several Sums were due to me abroad, and would have the honesty to pay my large account. Money not coming as they expected, laid an Action on my back, and threw me into Goal, where I suffered more than tongue can utter; but I shall not disclose the name of this Goaler, since I shall give you an account of some lines I wrote on him whilst I was his Prisoner. which were these:



This Goaler sure the Devil gave him birth,
For no such Fury hath his seat on Earth:
A Cannibal which eats the Flesh of Men,
And being gorged, spews them up again.
A Monster that the old World never knew,
Of late produc'd by a litigious crew,
Spawn of a Syren and Leviathan:
Part Fish part Fowl, part Devil, and part Man.
He Swallows down the poor, as Crows do Frogs,
And makes no more of Men, than Men of Dogs,
The Pris'ner ends his days in toil and sweat,
To fill the Cabbins of his Cabbinet.
This Cash being ravisht from his reaking brow,
Will be all spent the Devil knows not how.
His Cobler's Hell, he lives by other's sin,
And cares not who doth loose so he may win.
His Beds are dearer than a Bandy house,
There you may have a Whore, but here a Louse.
This is that Hell-bound for to sum up all,
Who is both Monster, Devil, and Canniball.

In this stinking place I stayed so long till I was almost starved, yet though I had nothing to feed on, I had daily a thousand which fed on me. The Daughter of my merciless Creditor hearing the miserableness of my condition, gave me a visit, and supplyed me with some Money for the present, and repeating her visits, pity did at last turn into affection; this Love soon seeded into Matrimony; for she was her Mothers Darling, and could persuade her to any thing, and so it proved, for she so prevailed, that I was discharged of my Debt, Fees paid, new Cloaths bought, and we incontinently married. I knew her to be a Whore, but necessity forced me to do what I did, or I must have perisht.

My Wife on the Bridal night expected no new thing from me, but a new fashioned duty; for she told me, if I expected to command, I was grosly mistaken; that she raised me not out of that Tomb I must have lain buryed in to my lives end, for that purpose, she knew how to rule her own affairs without my assistance, however she could not but acknowledge that Man was a neceßary implement in a Family, if it were but to cloak his Wives imperfections; To be short, Sir, I was only a titular Master, but a real Pimp and Cuckold; I bore all with a world of patience, still waiting an opportunity to get what I could, and march off: which fell out as happily as I could wish; for the House was noted to be a place of debauchery, and whilst my Mother in Law was condemned for a damn'd Bawd, and my Wife for an errant pice of impudence, I was pityed by all as one drawn in and undone by them both.

Officers in fine seized them; and carried them to Bridewel, being both safe from interrupting my fixed resolution, I ransackt the House, taking what Moneys I found, and selling what would yield me any, I betook my self to this place, the remoteness whereof from my former habitation affording me a very convenient refuge. Whilst I have been in these parts I have not expended my time idly; for in Goal and else where I have learned most knacks in playing I have ever heard of, and have practised them in many places very advantagiously, for I was a while of a Gang that stroled all the Countrey over to all the great Fairs in England, resorting thither as constantly, as such Tradesmen who make it their business to observe them, exercising their cheating faculties on all they can pick up fit for their company; the reasons why they go three or four in company, is that if any contest in playing should arise, or any opposition should be made, they may be the better able to defend their Roguery. Besides, if they should miss of a prize, and be smoakt as Gamesters, they are then strong enough for mischiefs of another nature, as Padding, Ken milling &c. and indeed let me tell you, there is no profest Villain which hath not a very great insight in Gaming, and know not only what advantages naturally accrue from every Game, but know how to make them when occasion shall require.

Since my coming hither I have very illy managed my succeßes; for I have won too many times without the interposition of one single loss of mine own, which hath raised in my Gamesters a suspition of me not to be taken off; by which means I have lost all future hopes of bubbling them any more; But since Sir, you stand fair in their good opinion, if you please to let me share with you, I shall inform you not only with my Art, but also furnish you with Tools which shall effect our design and increase our store. But before I shall encourage you to learn that which I now propound for your profit, give me leave to acquaint you with the inconveniencies, dangers, and perplexities which attend Gaming, least hereafter you condemn me for your rash learning that which you would have trampled under your feet, had you known the many dangerous concomitants which continually wait thereon.

To speak generally, Gaming is an enchanting Witchery, begot betwixt a couple of Devils, Idleness and Avarice: it so insatuates Man, that it renders him incapable of prosecuting his more serious affairs, and makes him to quarrel with his condition though ever so good: if he wins, the success so elevates him, that his mad joys carry him to the height of all excesses, if he looses, his misfortune plunges him to the bottom of Despair. Oh how I have seen a Man blast up his eyes, as if he intended to call Heaven to account for its injustice, in not giving him that Cast he so much desires. Nay, I heard one of no small note in Ordinary publickly invoke the Devil, (upon his throwing at all, that is all the men lies on the Table) that he would turn up Five, which was his Chance, and he should have his Soul for the next throw; an expression enough to make the hair of the vildest reprobate to stand an end.

It was said of one, that nec bonam nec malam fortunam ferre potest, that in both in good and bad fortune he was ever restless. Marcellus could neither be quiet as Conquerour, nor evercome. Thus such is the damn'd itch of Play, Gamesters are never satisfyed winning or loosing; if they win they hope to increase their store, if they loose their Money they hope to recover it again.

The question was wittily propounded by one, whether Men in a Ship at Sea were to be accounted inter mortuous, vel vivos, among the Living, or the Dead, because there were but few Inches between them and drowning. The Quære is not improper to be made of great Gamesters, though their Estates be never so considerable, whether they are to be esteemed Divites vel Pauperes, poor or rich, since there are but a few Casts at Dice betwixt a person of Fortune, (in that circumstance) and a Begger.

Now if you intend to be a Gamester, what ever your success be, you must bear it æquo animo, neither raised nor depressed; but I will assure you that it is a difficult matter so to do: for this course of life will try your patience. Would it not mad you to have so strange a fortune, as with a very small Sum to run up to Eighteen hundred pounds, and loose it again with his small stock in less than three days. I knew one with Fifty Shillings, win Five hundred pounds of his own at one time in his life, and thereupon putting himself into a Garb not misbecoming an Earl, played again, the Dice ran against him, lost every penny he had, or could borrow; hereupon he grew stark mad, and hang'd himself in his own Bed-cord. There are as many examples of this nature as would stuff a Quire of Paper, and as many as would fill a Ream of such who having had fair Estates, in few years have lost them at Play, and dyed in want and penury. I have heard it credibly reported, that a Gentleman belonging to the Six Clerks Office, who was not only well Cliented, but had a good Estate of his own, and by him always a considerable sum of Money; this Gentleman was invited to Play by some young Gallants that had a great desire to be fingring his Jacobus's, with whom he engaged, and by extraordinary fortune won two thousand pieces of Gold, was not content with that round sum, but plaid on, lost all, with his own Estate, sold his Place in the Office, and lost that too; at last, through exceßive grief, he transported himself to a Forreign Plantation, where, if his discontent dispatcht him not, he must be forced to Hoe for a livelihood. This comminly is the destiny of a decayed Gamester, if not this, he is seldom preferr'd higher than to the dignity of a Box keeper.

Lastly, before you take the Dice in your hand, think of drawing your Sword before you leave off Playing; for should you play upon the Square, you will be suspected by those that loose, you have knapt, or put the change of the Dice upon them; then right or wrong they will quarrel with you, more for the vexation of their loss, than for any just cause they had for so doing: If you do not fall together by the ears then in the very heat, you will have affronts enough to engage you in the Field next morning upon some trifling insignificant occasion, deem'd as a punctilio of Honour, or else timely put up those abuses which will occasion you to be scorn'd and slighted, and at last pist on as you walk the streets by every party caot-coloured Skip-kennel.

CHAP. XVI.

An account of Play, with several remarkable Occurrences.

Thus I have told you what you must expect, and now I shall inform you what to do; but e're you think to be compleat in this occult Art, you must by frequent trials reduce my Theory into your Practice.

In the first place, take this as a Maxim, never Play but when you are sure to win and that you might not fail thereof, have your Dice about you continually of all sorts, which you may buy in London at several places ready made to your hand, but very dear: It may be when you are in the Country you cannot be supplyed from thence so speedily as your urgent affairs require and therefore I would have you make them your self.

There are Fullams of two sorts, which you may make run high or low, that is, 6, 5, 4 or 3, 2, 1. either by drilling holes in the black spots, and load them with Quick-Silver, stopping up again the said holes again with Pitch, or filing the corners of the Dice. You may procure also, (which you must have Implements as neceßary in your intended Profeßion, as Tools are for any working occupation.) I say, there are Dice which you may get, which will run nothing but a Sise, another a Cinque, another a Quatre, &c. which are very useful at Tables; for if you want a Cinque, or so to enter at Back-gammon or Irish, hitting that Blot at an after-game, you recover again, and ten to one but you with the Game; besides, it is useful for a single Hit at Tick-tack, or for taking points, by joyning two together of a different sort.

In case of necessity if you have none of these artificial helps about you, then your hand must supply your wants, by Palming the Die, that is, having your Box in your hand, you take up both the Dice as they are thrown nimbly within the hollow of your hand, and put but one into the Box, reserving the other in your Palm, observing with a quick eye what side was upward, and so accordingly conform the next throw to your purpose, by delivering that in the Box, and the other in your hand smoothly together. You must sometimes use Topping; that is, by pretending to put both Dice into the Box whereas you have dropt but one, holding the other between your fore fingers, which you turn to your advantage. Knapping, is when you strike one Die dead, either at Tables or Hazzard let the other run a Milstone, as we use to say. Slurring, is when you throw your Dice so smoothly on the a Table that they turn not, for which purpose you must endeavour to choose your Table, or the smoothest part thereof. There are very few that can secure more than one Die, but I have known some so excellent at it, that they would slurr a Sise without turning, above a yard in length; others I have known, who could secure two Dice in three at Passage, but that is seldom seen. I have heard of some so dextrous in casting the Dice, that they would throw when they pleased less than Ames Ace through the handle of a Quart Pot.

Hazzard, In and In, and Passage are the principal Games in an Ordinary, you may find Professors enough thereof every where else, wherefore it is requisite to pass through these several Clashes for fear of being Cross-bitten or bubbled by some other dexterity, of which they have variety unimaginable. Hazzard, is a Game that maketh a quick riddance on one side or other, and therefore it hath not its name given improperly; for it ruinateth speedily, in Setting or Buttring (a term of art is used among us,) one or other is blown up immediately.

A Main at Hazzard, is that cast of the Die which is thrown first, but then it must be above Four, and less than Ten, otherwise it is no Main; so that hence you may understand there are five Mains, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9, to these Mains there are seven Chances, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10. Ames Ace, and Duce Ace are general outs or loßes to them all; Eleven is out to 5, 6, 8, or 9; Twelve is out to 5, 7, or 9; but it nicks 6, or 8, as 11, doth 7, and so doth 5, nick 5, and so on to 9; after the second throw, the cast that comes first wins. At Hazzard, the cunning Gamester will praise it may be Quatre Ace against Cinque Duce, or Tray Ace against Cinque Tray; you had need be well verst before you meddle with this, it being very hazzardous. Though twenty at a Table set you, you may knock with your Box but at one, and then all the rest draw their Money; as many as you knock to you must pay if you loose; if you throw at all, winning, you sweep all; O the sweet that is in that throw, when a man upon the success of that Nick shall boldly cry more Money Gentlemen, although the Table is covered with Half-Crowns. If you sett, and the Caster refuse you, if another cover you, and you accept thereof, it is one and the same thing.

At In and In you play with four Dice, you may drop from one shilling to a pound; In, is when any two Doublets appear: Out, when none, In and In, when three Aces, three Duces, &c. or four of one sort.

At Passage you are to play with three Dice; you cannot Pass unless you throw Doublets above Nine, less than Nine, you are out; all other throws signifying nothing you must throw on. What other criticismes and crotchets there are in these Games, you cannot understand, otherwise than by Observation in your Practice; but as I told you at first, it is best not to meddle with it at all.

Hereupon my Gentleman took several Dice out of his Pocket, and throwing them, I saw he could make them run as he listed; my fingers itched to be at the sport, so that I spent the most part of every day in consulting what advantages I could find out in Play; nay, in the very night I was never at rest for dreaming of these confounded Devils bones: the indefatigable pains I took (to find out the ready way to my destruction,( made me speedily an accomplisht Gamester; and to shew my Master how I had improv'd my self from his dictations, I engaged with him at single hand, he entring the List with me, found himself equally, if not over-matcht.

Hereupon he perswaded me to study how I might contrive an opportunity to Play, when at one bout we might both sow and reap a plentiful crop, that might help to a future maintenance. The Plott I laid at a Gentlemans house five miles distant from Salisbury, where I was invited to be merry, with orders to bring what friends I pleased with me, you may be sure I carried none but what had Money enough, otherwise no company for me. Being met together, we were very jovial, and amidst our cups, I propounded to throw with Dice, who should drink a Glass; it was agreed on; being all half boozie, I made another proposition to play at Hazzard round for a Crown and no farther; this motion took as well as the former, and to work we went.

To be short, I won all their Moneys, hardly leaving our Entertainer a penny in the House; and fearing he should recruit the next day, and so farther engage me, my new Comrade perswaded me to trip off and share, for it was reasonable he should go snips with me; I therefore caused my Horse to be brought forth, and notwithstanding the many thousand perswasions to the contrary, (rewarding the Servants,) I took my leave of them, promising to give what Revenge they pleased the next day, but that was none of our intent, for early the next morning, we, with our booty rode for London.

CHAP. XVII.

 

They go for London, one is apprehended and the other in his flight casually doth two or three mischiefs; the strange discovery of a Murther of seventeen years standing.

Here puft up with good fortune, we scattered our Moneys up and down the City, trampling the streets in terror and huffing after a strange rate: but comming along by South-Hampton building an aged Matron seized on my Elbow-shaking companion, crying out this is the Rogue that rob'd me; I hearing that betook my self to my heels fearing lest being found in his company I might be taken up for his accounts in the theft. I made more hast than good speed it seems, for in my flight I bore down all that opposed me; insomuch that a poor Woman with a basket of Eggs standing in my way I overthrew her and breaking the Eggs utterly undid the Woman her whole stock consisting in that basket. A fellow seeing this indeavoured to lay hold on me, but I strugling to disingage my self from him pusht him forward on his nose and filling fell into an old womans deep Codling Pan up to the Armpits almost it being ful of newly scalded apples, never was Codlings so handled, not Man so becodled as he was; the almost boyling water so tormented him that he roared as bad as the fellow which was inclosed in Phalarus his Bull; fearing the mischief I had done I added new Wings to my speed, but not looking before me I ran directly against a Ladder in my way on which there was a Labouring Man carrying up Morter to the top, but he was stopt in his intent for though he went up by the Ladder he came down without a Rope, his Morter falling on the heads of four finicall Gentlewomen as they past by, who now might properly be called Morter-Pieces the Ladder fell easily and gradually from the House to a Sign-Post, the Man holding fast by one of the rounds this while receiving little or no dammage to the wonder and astonishment of all the spectators. However I was detain'd, and none comming against me, nor accusing me for any thing but the Woman with her Eggs, and the old Woman for the dammage she had sustaind by the mashing of her Codlings; the fellow for being scalded by them, and this man that charged me most with supposition of loosing his life by my means I was dismist giving to each what satisfaction I Judged convenient.

What became of my Come-at seven I know not, but glad I was to be clear'd from this fright; thus it is to have a guilty Conscience a man I have heard of who flew in a Moonshine night from his own shaddow, thinking it to be a Devill that haunted his wicked carkass: Another more remarkable I have heard much talk of, who having murdered a Man in London fled into Forreign Parts, and lived to and fro eightteen years; returning home again as he walked one day through Cheap-side, he heard a cry behind him, stop him, stop him, seeing a great quantity of people making towards him, presently fell a running with all the speed he could, the rabble seeing two run as if it were for there lives, devided themselves and in their pursuit took the Thief they cheifly ran after, and seizing the Gentleman who ran they knew not for what, he cryed out pray be civil Gentlemen it is confest I am the Man; upon farther inquiry found him from his own mouth to be a murderer of near twenty years standing.

Gameing had so general a possession of me, that I could think of nothing else, and because I could not always meet in my ramble in the City with such as suited my purpose; I frequented Ordinaries where I never mist of good chear, nor variety of Company. For about one of the Clock you are sure to have an excellent dinner provided by way of Ordinary; where you shall have so many choice dishes and wine, that the Master is always a looser in his entertainment what cares he for that, the box shall make all good again. Gentlemen of quality and civility frequent this Table, and after dinner will play a while for Recreation moderately and commonly without deserving reproof, but the generallity of such as meet there are Wit-shifters. Some have frequented the house to eat only there being such excellent provision, and cheaper then they can get elsewhere, and never play at all only look on, but being once taken notice of they shall have small incouragement to come again.

Here I came acquainted, and did so commonly frequent all houses of this function, that I shall indeavor to give you an account of what I either acted or observed in the time of my converse amongst these Esquires of the Elbow.

CHAP. XVIII.

 

He here discovers the cheats of Gameing, the Nature and quality of an Ordinary, relating what manner of Persons, they are which frequent it, with many pleasant stories intermixt, with a dehortation from playing at Dice.

All the day long there is not much playing in an Ordinary, what there is, is amongst Gentlemen and the more civiliz'd sort of persons, but towards Night these Houses are thronged with people of all sorts and qualities, and then when ravenous Beasts usually seek their prey, their comes in Shoals of Hectors, Trappanners, Guilts, Pads, Biters, Priggs; Divers, Lifters, Kidnappers, Vouchers, Mill Kens, Decoys, Shop-lifters, Foilers, Bulkers, Droppers, Famblers, Dounakers and Crosbyters, &c. All these may be ranked under the general appellation of Rooks, this is the Field where the seed of Hemp is sown and grows till the Gallows groans for it, this is Tyburns Nursery, for yearly some or other of this cursed gang go thither.

The first day I entred this School of Vertue, I commenced Master of Arts, and would not easily be confuted with their Sophistry, but when young Gentlemen Prentices or Casheers come hither unskil'd in the quibbles and devices here practiced they call him a Lamb, then straitways a Rook (or more properly a Wolf) follows him close, and ingages him in advantagious betts, and at length worries him, that is he so fleeceth him as not to leave him a penny, and then the snearing dogs will laughingly say see the Lamb is bitten.

Some of these Rooks or Rogues if they perceive you to be full of Money, though they, never saw you before, will impudently and importunately strive to borrow Money of you without the least intention of repaying, if you should be so facile as to do it, or to go with you when you are playing at Hazard seven to twelve half a crown which is more then ten to one, if you deny them their unreasonable request, you shall find them sometimes very angry. Others will watch when you are serious at your Game whether your Sword hangs loose behind that they may lift that away, others will not scruple if they find an opportunity to pick your pocket directly, if these projects fail, then have at your Gold Buttons if you have any on your Cloak, or steal the Cloak it self, if it either lye loose or careless. But above all they have a trick you cannot avoid which is to throw at your Money with a dry Fist (as they term it) that is if they nick you (id est win) 'tis theirs, if they loose they owe you so much, if you demand your money they will peremptory tell you anon will serve turn, and then it may be a Rascally Boxkeeper that usually snips with him, shall excuse him, saying he is a very honest Gentleman Sir you need not mistrust him, where as he knows no body will trust him with a Newgate groat, if you chance to nick them, its ten to one but they will wait your coming out at night and beat you soundly.

I saw a couple of blades (Gentilely garb'd) enter one evening the Ordinary they were lookers on a while, at length there being a vacant Room, one of them pulls the chair and sits down as the box came still round he past it, doing it so often said one angerly if you will not throw sir what fit you there for, hereupon he snatcht up the box saying set me what you will Sir I will throw at it, the other hearing him say so, did set him two Guinneys, which he nickt, the Gentleman being vext did set him four more with a round parcel of Silver which he won also. Now did the whole Table concern themselves buttering him, that is doubling or trebbling what they did set before, yet could not turn his hand which was so successful that he held in eleven mains together, and just as he had almost broke the Table he chanc't to throw out, having got his hatful of Mony he arose from the Table and went to the fire with his Comrade, who asked him how he durst be so impudently bold to adventure after that manner knowing he had not a Cross about him to bless himself with all; how is that said one of the loosers who overheard what was said, had you no Money when you went to play, it matters not replied the winner I have enough now, had I lost having not wherewithal to pay you, why then ye must have been content to kick me so long till ye should say your selves ye were satisfied; besides Sir I am a Souldier and have past through many a brunt venturing my life hard for eight pence a day, and do you think now I would not hazard a kicking or a pumping for so many fair pounds, all that were there concerned smiled at his confidence, but he laught heartily at their folly and his own good fortune. Well may he laugh that wins.

Did you but see what passions and how divers do vary men into several postures you would absolutely conclude the place to be a Bedlam instead of an Ordinary; you may observe one loosing to gnaw the box in peices, or take the sawcer of Dice and throw it over his head, whilst the winning caster smiles and is as merry as a Bee, another you may see who hath lost all his Money, standing like Pontius Pilate in the old Primmer, or like some antick figure in a suit of hangings as motion-less and almost as liveless.

A Gentleman I took notice of one day, who loosing what monys he had about him) sate very pensively, in steps a young Blade in this interval and briskly took up the box, but it came not to his hands above thrice before he had lost all he brought in with him, which so inraged the Noddy that he behaved himself like a meer frantick Fellow swearing Damme was not I a villain in less then an hour to loose four pounds, this melancholly person hearing, him swear and fret for a sum so inconsiderable to what he had lost, Damm you (said he) Damme that have lost fourscore pounds in half an hour, it seems the greater looser thought it a peice of injustice the lesser should be damn'd before him. Frequent are the quarrels in this place occasioned by the heat of Wine before they came in or by loss made chollerick afterwards; Swords commonly drawn, or boxes and Candlesticks thrown at one anothers heads sometimes the Rooks will raise a seeming feud especially when their stocks are low) when they see a Table covered with money, which may give them an occasion to scramble; such are the usuall garboyls in this place that they form a perfect type of Hell.

I cannot forbear smiling when I think of a certain passage one time at an Ordinary. A gentleman who was well stored with gold playd high and in a little time had not one penny left; he first splits the box and then box the Box-keeper having so done takes off his own hat from his head which was black damme (said he) who dares say this hat is not white, he is a son of a whore that will not say so; the standers by seeing his loss had made him mad reply'd not a word; he perceiving on the other side that none would quarrell with him seats himself and fell fast asleep; another Gentleman who had lost as much or more then the former came to him who slept and awaking him what is that you said sir is your black hat white, its a damn'd lye I say it is blew deny it if you dare. The Gentleman was well pleased to see one madder then himself, and therefore without passion desired him to go and sleep as he had done, and on his awaking they should not differ about the colour, into what franzies do these damn'd Dice put men into.

When late at night and the company grows thin and your eyes dim with watching then is the time for false Dice to be put on the ignorant then also is there a security in Palming, Tobping, Slurring, &c.

There are a certain sort of gentle and subtle Rooks whose outside speaks as much a Gentleman as most of the first magnitude. This cunning ham seldome plays in an Ordinaty, yet will sit therein a whole evening to the intent he may observe who winns, if considerable and the winner seem plyably generous and Bubbable, he will some way or other insinuate into his acquaintance by applauding his happy hand, congratulating his success &c. and then familliarly yet civilly prompt him to a glass of Wine that they may drink to the continuance of that good fortune.

Having gotten him to the Tavern he is sure to wheadle him into play, and by hook or by crook (as we use to say) he is sure to winn some if not all his money; and that he may not be suspected for not playing squarely he will (if he be sure of his buble) loose considerably sometimes, but in the long run he is sure to recover it again. I was severall times so served but they could do no good upon me; yet notwithstanding that by my frequent practice I had gain'd a great deal of skill and crafty knowledge in the Dice, I lost spent and consumed all my moneys, and therefore I shall advise all to detest this abominable kind of life; if the most certain loss of your money will do it I do undertake to demonstrate that any one with constant play upon the square shall be a looser at the years end. I have heard it very confidently aver'd by an eye witness that three Gentlemen sate down at twelve penny Inn and Inn; each of them drew three pound a piece in two houres time the box had four pound of the money.

And that I may further perswade all men from gameing, consider how few there are if any who have gotten an Estate by play, but how many thousand antient and worthy families have been ruined and destroyed thereby. It is confest there is no constant gamester but at one time or other hath a considerable run of winning (but such is the infatuation of play that I could never hear of any that knew how to give over when they were well. I have known those have gotten many hundreds of pounds and have rested a while with an intention never to play more; but by over perswasion having broken bulk as they term it wherin again for all and lost it.

Besides if a man hath a good parcell of money 'tis extreme folly to play whether himself or another shall be the possessor thereof; if his stock be small it is downright madness to hazard that the loss whereof shall reduce a man to beggery. Moreover if you were but sensible of the anguish that is upon that mans spirit the next morning having slept upon the loss of his money now irrecoverable it would deter any one from ever medling with the accursed cause of so much vexation and trouble; what I now say is the product of wofull experience.



——Experto crede Roberto.

To conclude having lost all my money I began to grow miserably poor to prevent the further increase of my wants I sought out my old Master whom I found upon the Royall Exchange, upon our going off for joy to see me carried me to a Tavern where I acquainted him with all my Land travels since my leaving him, and assuring him I was weary of living longer ashore, he advized me to go with him, and he would make me his mate, I gladly consented and in that quality I sail'd with him for Guinney.

Our Captain had thus far proceeded in recounting the memorable passages of his Life as we were making ready to cast Anchor we being at that time not above a league from Naples overjoy'd at the successfulness of this our petty Voyage, we made our selves all ready to go a shore landing, our greatest care was to get convenient Lodgings with some difficulty we obtain'd them, and having setled our selves in them, immediately went and got our bills of Exchange accepted, till they came due we fitted our selves with all things both necessary and pleasureable, yet for some important reasons, for a while we laid an imbargo on our accustomed profest Extravagancies, keeping a strickt Reign on our head-strong wills and defiles, but having received our Money we no longer dallied with our delights, but gave them leave to court us in what pleasant shapes they judged most convenient for our satisfaction.

Every day produced its new divertisement, every hour each of us studied how we might appear Rivals to the most Epicrean critical pallated Poleanate of the Universe, for since we were sailing in the Ocean of Senseless Security under a stiff gale of Plenty , we shaped our course for the Port of Sensuallity. The time being expired we had our Money paid us to a Doit, with as much respect as if we had been the greatest Merchants in Europe, desiring our further acquaintance and correspondence, which we promised not so much to traffick with them as to play some tricks upon them.

As our Lodgings were large and sumptuous sparing no cost for their furniture, so were our habits very rich (Modo Nepolitano) wearing about us as many pretious stones daily as would have been a good return for a young Merchant after a three years sweating expectation: the gloriousness of our outward appearances made us no less a wonder to the Neopolitan Inhabitants than we were to our selves, for we now began to admire one another having totally forgotten what once we were. Mr. Goose-quill the Scrivener strutted the streets strangely whose garb and gate flourisht like the Capital T of This Indenture, the state of his present Condition made him receive many an Obligation, which he always generously cancel'd, and continually obliged others on valueable considerations. The Drugster notwithstanding all his striving to seem otherwise yet still showed himself to be a Chip of the old Block, a rasp of Log-wood, and sented strongly of his old occupation. His habit prompted him to personate the Spaniard; which he did so scurvily that never did thing appear more preposterous, had you seen him walk you would have sworn all his members were in an uprore or about to revolt from their Principal, for his Whiskers tilted his eyes, and they again being inraged to be confined within such narrow limits by their staring seemed to strive to come out that they might check the insolency of that audacious board; and as for his arms and legs there was not the least correspondency; for his hands were in continual motion being every minute imploy'd in cocking his Beaver upon one side, but his legs mov'd so slowly and stately that they seemed to be offended at their slavish Officer, showing their loathness by their slowness to be Porters to a burden of so little worth. Doll as she had been conversant amongst the Gentry, so in her deportment she behaved her self as well as any of the best education; but for Jenny I could hardly forbear laughing to see how the proud Minks would jut it as she went, her milking pail, and dragled tail, were clean out of her remembrance, so was her being a Motly-Wast-coteer , there being not the least track of her former condition discoverable, she resolved to make others esteem of her by the value she did put on her self, not rating her condition as she was the quondam off spring of Curds and Cream, but prizeing it as one of Fortunes darlings whom neither cloaths nor money could make more splendid, and as for an haughty spirit now unmatchable; I took upon me one day (as well I thought I might) to check her for giving six hundred Crowns for a Locket, she smartly took me up, what said she though I was born in the ebb of Fortune, will you now intrench and wound the liberty my better stars have confer'd upon me, to be plain I will not have my desires and pleasures circumscribed and taught me since I have enough and will injoy it. Sir if you once begin to be narrow minded you will be a Thief both to the esteem and injoyments you may have in the world, I will not be limited to please your fancy as for my delights I will pursue them in what shapes I fancy both at home and abroad, I will spare no cost that may ingage, wide mouth'd report to proclaim the boundlessness of my pleasures and gallantry; all the Wits of the City I will ingage with Sack and Money to write Panagyricks on my Gaudy and witty superfluities, not a Cavaleero in Naples, but shall vail his bonnet at my Balcony, and when I please the splendor of my habit shall fix my Gazers as Statues in the place they stand. I thought she was mad till she smilingly took me by the hand, saying you see Latroon I have a Soul as large as if Nobility had waited on my Cradle, however my will shall always be in subordination to yours.

As for the Captain he was a Man well read, and having seen the world, the novelty of a place never alter'd him, he had a good natural genious, and very facetious in discourse which appears sufficiently by the witty narrative of his Life, the relation whereof did infinitely please us, but most especially my Jenny, who would often repeat to me some passages, but one day after dinner being altogether she took occasion to speak of the Captains gaming and other Extravagancies, and having drawn several good Observations from them, she desired the Company to give her audience and she would give an account of a notable Extravagant a young Man of her acquaintance, but as an introduction to her story, she beg'd leave to speak something of his Father first, and thus she begun.

CHAP. XIX.

 

A Brewers-Clerk cheating his Master, is taken in the manner: Afterwards, he having buried his Master, by a politick Project is married to his Mistress; he buries her, and is married to a Countrey-maid; who understanding her Husbands Riches, puts him to great expences in new furnishing the House, and extravagantly fitting her against, and in her lying in.

I remember (said Mrs. Jane) when I lived in London, there was a jolly old Blade, who was then Aldermans Deputy of the Ward, and who was reported to be worth the better part of 10000 lib. that had in his youth been a notable Gamester, and many tricks he had used before his Mercury was fix'd, and became settled in the World. He had Travelled and Rambled many years by Sea and Land, and had tried and tasted all Fortunes and Conditions; and Fortune had always been so much his friend, as to bring him off without a scratch'd face, no great, no sensible disaster; at length, being somewhat weary of the Ramble, he resolved to take up and follow some imployment. He was fitted for any imployment, and yet not rightly fitted for none. But being of a good Capacity, he was entertained by a Brewer to be his desperate Clerk, that is to say, to gather up the desperate Debts. This was an imployment very fit for him, for it gave him large conveniencie to Ramble; for the Brewer, who had been a great dealer, had Money owing him by several people, some whereof lived at one end of the Town, and some at the other; so that all parts of that great City, especially the out-parts, his business lay in. He discharged this imployment indifferently well, for his Masters profit, and very well for his own; for he had power, if he could not get all, to compound with any of the Debtors for a part. And although his allowance, being three shillings in the pound, was considerable, yet he much augmented it by the tricks he had; for although he received a Debt of five pound or more, he would tell his Master, that he could get but half, and sometimes, although he received all, yet he would keep it all to himself; and by this means he raised himself a pretty Fortune; and these tricks were usual with him, especially if the people with whom he made this profitable Bargain lived remote, or at any considerable distance from his Masters habitation. Among others that he thus compounded with, there was an honest old Blade who had lived near the Tower, & had run 10 lib. in his Master the Brewers debt; and through some misfortunes that had befallen him, he left that end of the Town, and went to dwell as far as St. James's near Westminster; some while he had dwelt there without being known or inquired after; and now our Clerk being imployed to look after him, among others, was upon the hunt to find him: upon a strict and diligent inquiry, he heard that he dwelt at St. James's. Wherefore the next time his occasions call'd him that way, he there inquired for him; after much inquiring, he heard that the party had lived there, but was removed to Clarkenwel; he therefore went thither, and there, with as much trouble as before, he again heard that he had dwelt there, but he had some time since removed from thence to Lymohouse; he made the same inquiry, and still heard of another removal to Lambeth ; and I think from thence to two or three other places; but in fine, he found him, but it was in Redriff.

Having found out his Game, he strongly charged him with the Debt aforesaid, and was resolved, that as he had taken so much pains, that the poor man should pay for it; poor man you must judge him to be, for it was impossible he should be rich, that had in seven years made so many removes, The money being demanded, poverty was pleaded; but he was deaf on that ear, and was resolved not to lose his labour. In conclusion, the man being honest, was content to pay, and that all too, provided he might have time to do it; to this our Clerk was pretty willing, & an agreement was made up, to pay the mony by half a Crown a week. The man, although he sometimes missed, yet when the Clerk came and received not the money, he was to spend 4d. and when he did pay, the Clerk agreed to spend 2d. so that the Clerk seldom or never missed to come and visit his Debtor once every week; and the poor man seeing that if he did not pay him two shillings six pence, it was to his dammage 4d. seldom miss'd him; and thus, in time, the Debt was paid, and the Clerk, in his Masters behalf, gave a discharge.

But all this while his Master the Brewer knew nothing of this matter, neither did his man intend he should; for as he had taken extraordinary pains in finding him out, so he was resolved to have extraordinary gains, and indeed, all for himself; and thought, and judged that, as he had often-times kept all for himself, so he might well do so now; for he believed, although his Master should go to some Cunning-man, or the Devil himself, to finde this man who had so often removed his habitation, yet he must lose his labour; and it being usual with him when people were not to be found, to write in the Margin of the Book where their Debts were entred, Non est inventus; and when they were dead, and there was no possibility of getting any thing of them, to write, Mortuus est; so now he concluded that this fellow was so far from being found, that he might write Mortuus est, and so he did in the Book aforesaid. His Master had oftentimes looked over the Book, and seeing those fatal words in the Margin, had passed that Debt over, as he had done several others with the same mark. But as the Proverb saith, that the Pitcher goes not so often to the water, but that it comes home broken at last; so, although this our desperate Clerk had played many of these pranks, and that without discovery, yet now his time was come, and this business shewed him in his colours.

This poor man, who, I told you, lately lived at Redriff, had now made another remove, and from thence was come again to St. Katharines (which was near the Brewers habitation) and he having been so honest as to pay the old Debt, was resolved to try if his Credit would serve for a new: wherefore having taken a new House fitting for the Ale-draping-Trade, he went one Morning to the Brew-house; and having no acquaintance there with any body but our desperate Clerk, he inquired for him; but although he was there early, he was never the near, for the Clerk was gone out; and the old Fellow sauntring about the yard, at length the Brewer himself came out, and seeing one waiting there, and as he supposed about business too, he asked him if he would speak with any body; the Fellow replied, yes, with his Clerk; which of them, said the Brewer? Mr. R. said the Fellow; the Brewer telling him that he was not within, and asking him if he could not do his business; Yes, if you please, Sir, replied the fellow: Well then, what is it, said the Brewer. May it please you, Sir, I am an old Customer, saith the fellow, and have long time dealt with you; and although I have been absent a great while, yet I have been honest, and will be so still; and being come to live near you, I desire you to let me have some more drink: Well Friend, what is your name, said the Brewer: J. B. said the Fellow. How long since did you deal with me, said the Brewer: Ten years, replied the Fellow. Whereupon the Brewer calling for his Book, looked over, and at length found it, but found it marked with a Mortuus est: how now, said he then, is your name J. B. and are you alive. Yes, Sir, said the Fellow, your Clerk knows me; for I have paid him truly and honestly, and not long since he received the last.

The Brewer hearing him say so, and now discovering the whole story, and his Clerks knavery, told the man that he would send him in some drink, but withal ordred him to come the next morning about 9 a Clock. But before that time, about 8, he took his Clerk to task; and pretending to look over his Book in general, made several stopt, and asked Questions, but more particularly when he came to this Debt; and he asking if he never received any money of him; No, Sir, said the Clerk, I could never find him; and at length I did hear of him, but Mortuus est, Sir, He's dead long since. Are you sure of it, replied the Brewer: Yes, Sir, said the Clerk, I am certainly sure of it; what I have writ there is infallible. But I doubt it will not prove so, said the Master; and thereupon, seeing the Customer come in, he said, look, sure this is he, or his ghost. Our Clerk too well knowing the matter, and that it was so apparent, knew not what to say or do; but knowing that he was in a fault, and caught too, and being guilty of many more such tricks, and doubting they would all come out, cried Peccavi, and desired pardon: but his Master believing him to be more knave than he yet knew, told him his thoughts, and (withal) that he would lay him in a Jayl. The Clerk hearing that lamentable word, told his Master he would prevent him by drowning himself; and thereupon, the house being by the water-side, he ran thither, in order to his resolution. The Brewer hearing his Clerks resolution of drowning himself, and doubting that he might be so desperate as to do so, sent after him to stop and hinder him; for he not only considered that he should be somewhat guilty of his death, but also lose by it, for he had all his Books and Tallies about him; and if he should miscarry, he was not able to prove many debts that were owing to him, wherefore he not only saved his life, but told him, he forgave him that misdemeanor, and would not ask him any satisfaction, whereupon he rested contented: But this miscarriage of his was such a blot in his Scutchion, that he was called Mortuus est, to his dying day.

But thus as he had over-reached, outwitted, or, I may truly say, Cheated his Master the Brewer, so he did, after him, deal with his Mistress, but after a different manner: for his Master, soon after dying, and leaving a plentiful estate, and only a Widow to enjoy it; she knowing her Clerks abilities were sufficient, and now not doubting his honesty, gave him a very large allowance, and made him chief Clerk, and Overseer of all. He being in this high employment, was somewhat covetous, but more ambitious, and these two passions raised another, which he termed Love; and who should he be in love with but his Mistress: and as he was her Overseer, so he intended to be her Husband. Before he had the confidence to court her, he pretended to the Servants and others, that he did so, and this was out of policie to hinder the Courtships of all others. So that by that time his Mistress understood and knew of his pretensions, all others did talk of the time of his Marriage: One, in his fancie, appointing at such a time, and another at such a time; so that he letting his Mistress know his passion, as he termed it, she heard that all her Servants, nay, and some of her friends talked so freely of it, as if they seemed to allow of it.

She was much troubled at the boldness of her Servant, and forbid his prosecution of his suit, telling him, that he should lose his labour; but he, now he was in, was resolved to go through with his bold undertaking, persevered in it, and used all the Courtships that were usual on that account. It was his place to receive and pay all Moneys, so that all the Servants, both men and women, came to him for their wages; and he giving them a cast in his Office, and using them courteously, they dealt with and for him accordingly; besides this, he had bestowed some moneys & presents on the Chamber-maid, who had promised to be at his direction, & to stand his friend in everything; and indeed she used all her little Rhetorick in his behalf.

He being still refused by his Mistress, was resolved to hazard all at once, and therefore he caused the Chamber-maid to tell it as a secret, that two days after that, he was to be married to her Mistress: All the Servants told it to one another whisperingly, and together they provided a noise of Musick to welcome him up on the next Morning: he having thus laid his Plot, and the time being come, about five of the Clock of the next morning after his pretended Wedding-day, by the Chamber-maids connivance he got into his Mistresses Bed-Chamber; and he had not staid there long, but the Musick coming under the Chamber-window, tuned their instruments, and struck up a lusty measure: his Mistress being awaked at the noise, cried out, and asked, what is the matter? He being in his Night-Cap, and without a Doublet in his shirt, drawing the Curtains, told her, that the matter she should presently hear: She seeing him in the Chamber, & in that posture, wondring at the occasion, called out for the Maid; who although she was near enough, yet would not hear her; she believing that she was betrai'd, thought to cry out, and began to do so, but could not be heard for the noise of the Musick. By this time the Musitians had finished their first Tune, and then, as usual, they cried out, Good Morrow, Mr. Bride-groom; Good Morrow, Mrs. Bride, Heavens give you joy. What Bride, and Bridegroom, do they mean, said the Woman. Why, said he, they mean us two; for it having been strongly reported that we were married yesterday, the Musick are come this Morning to play us up; and truly, continued he, I was just now informed of it, and hoping it is by your appointment, and that at length you intend that it shall be so, I am come to try your disposition: and thereupon he forced a Kiss from her; and said, Madam, will you be pleased to own this Wedding? No, said she, nor you neither: Then I will, said he; and thereupon the Musick having now plaid another lesson, he in that posture threw them out of the Window fourhalf-Crown-pieces; and standing in that posture for some time, shewed himself and spake to the Servants and others that were there assembled. And now the Musick having plaid their last Lesson, saluting him with a Thank you Mr. Bridegroom, they departed. He now coming to the bed-side, sat down by his Mistress, and told her, All her people had shewed themselves joyful in his supposed happiness, and that therefore he hoped she would really make him so, by doing that in earnest, that all the World thought was so; and, said he, do you say what you will, it will be thought that it is so, and that I have lain all this Night in your Chamber.

She would not answer him one word, so pensive she was, in considering what had hapen'd; but at length she told him, that if yet he would obey her in any thing, she desired him to call her Maid; he who knew that the Maid would not prejudice him, soon called her; and she was no sooner come into her Mistresses sight, but she cried out, Oh Lord, Mistress, how joyful I am; at what, replied the Mistress; that you and Mr. R. are married; why, who tells you so, said the Mistress; All the World, said the Maid, not only our family, but al the street know it, and the Musick, too, thankt you for your liberal rewarding them. The Mistress hearing that the Maid was of this mind, did believe that she said true, and that all the Town vvould ere long be of her opinion; vvherefore chiding her Maid for leaving the door open, and telling her that although all the World did, or might believe that she vvas married, yet she could say, and swear the contrary, for that she had been her bed-fellow that night; and therefore, said she, I expect that you vvill go and undeceive them, and tell them so. The Maid replied, that although she knew vvhat she said vvas true, yet she wished it vvere otherwise; and added, that Mr. R. vvas more fit to be her bed-fellow than she vvas. Well, vvell, Gossip, replied the Mistress, then you must appoint me what to do. No, answered the Maid, but I only tell you my opinion. No more, said the Mistress, and thereupon was a great silence between them. But Mr. R. being resolved to try her a little further, made a sign to the Maid to leave the Chamber; she obeyed him; and he then again fell to wooing it with his Mistress; who although she gave him no answer for a long time, yet she thought the more, and paid it with thinking; and considering the Case truly as it stood in every respect, he over-ruled and overcame her; whether he gave her then an earnest penny (as he was like enough to do) or no, I know not; but he keeping her Company for some hours; and by her consent getting a Coach, he clapt her into it; and going to the next Church, sent for a Parson, and there that was done in earnest, that had been so well presented in jest; and the next night he did lie with her; and that he might be sure to have Witnesses of his being in bed with her, several of their Acquaintance were admitted into the Chamber.

By this device (said Mrs. Mary) did this Clerk get him a wife, and an estate to boot, and that a very considerable one, which he looked after warily & carefully; and as an old Whore-master is the fittest person to make a Justice of the Peace, to punish that in others which he by experience knows more than ordinary, or for envy that he cannot prosecute his old courses. So this Clerk having been a sinner, and having been guilty of cheating his Master, was not too cunning to suffer any of his Under-Officers to serve him in the same manner. And he so well followed this course, that he became Rich; and when his wife died, which was some years after, he had scraped such an estate together, that he was looked upon to be one of the most considerable persons in the Parish.

His Wife being dead, and he being now an old Fox, was resolved to be wary in his second choice, and to have both pleasure and profit: and not having any Children by his old wife, intended to have one that might be in possibility of bringing those that might Heir his estate. He therefore putting himself into as youthful a habit as he could, wooed several Maids of good birth and Quality; and in the end, the London Lasses not fitting his humour, as being too wantonly and tenderly bred, and therefore proud and chargeable, he went into the Countrey, where he found one, who not being above four and twenty years of age, well bred, and one who had 400 lib. to her portion, and was sufficiently handsome; to this Maiden thus qualified, he being now sixty years of age was married: she at first proved to be what he expected, an obedient and loving wife; but in short time, understanding her Husbands Quality, that he was the chiefest man in the Parish, and thereby understanding her own; and being visited by, and visiting of her Neighbours, and seeing their manners and customes, their entertainments, habits, houshold-stuff and other Ornaments for themselves and houses, and beliving that they were below her in Quality, it was not long ere she by their example desired, nay demanded the like; she would frequently tell her Husband, that she had been at such a Neighbours, and there saw that she had such a suit of Curtains and Vallence which were better and more in fashion than hers; and when by her perswasions or flattery she had obtained the like, then she complained that the Bed-stead was an old fashion'd one, and that must be changed: next, that she must have new Chairs and Stools suitable to the Curtains; and then she rested not there, until she had gotten a new suit of hangings suitable to the Curtains and Stools: and now she stopp'd in her expences that way, but exceeded in another; for this new Furniture being had, all her Neighbours, friends, and acquaintance must be invited, one after another, to her house to see what an alteration she had made, and to have their opinions how they liked them. And these Friends must be created with Wine and Junckets; & their Opinions being asked, one said, that indeed all was well, but that the Looking-glass she had was unsuitable, an old, pitiful thing, and therefore a new one must be had; another found fault with the brass Andirons in the Chimney, and that all that Furniture must be changed; & a third said, there wanted a handsom Cabinet or Chest of Drawers: and now she had the Opinion of her Neighbours, she never let her Husband rest, night or day, till all these things were done as she desired. The Chamber being thus set in order, the Kitchin was the next thing to be considered of, and there the Pewter first appeared, and that being old fashioned, and being purchased at several times, was all differently marked; wherefore all that was changed for other that was of a newer fashion; and that she might be a la mode, there must be no Letter-Marks on it, but on every piece there must be the Coat of Arms of her Husband, and hers empaled, engraven on them; and it may be, he being unacquainted with any Arms of his own or hers either, must be at the charge to search the Heralds-Office for them; and they being found out, (for money rarely misses to make any man so much a Gentleman as to have a Coat) they must also be fairly painted, to hang up in the Hall; and the affairs in the Kitchin not being yet throughly reformed, the good old Andirons are changed into a new fashioned Range or Grate; and now all the Pewter being new, the shelves and dressers must be new made and new painted, as all the Kitchin was likewise. Thus did this woman employ her self in the day time, and at night, he first giving her a grant that she should have the thing she desired, she requited him in the best manner she could; and he employed himself so well, that she was with Childe; and in short time, she being confirmed in the opinion that she was so, her stomack was very squeamish, and she must have Candles and Cordials of all sorts; for the making and ordering of which, she had the advice of an hundred Midwives, Nurses, and Gossips; and then She longed for all things She saw or heard of, especially such things as were scarce and costly, as Cherries and Straw-berries in March and April, when She was forc'd to give 12d or 18d a piece for them; but when May came, and that they were any thing cheaper, She cared not for them. And next, all her business was in making provision against the Bantling should come to Town; there must be new Blankets, Beds, Rowlers, Pilches, Clouts, Shirts, Headbands, Biggins, and a world of such kind of little Utensils provided; and the Cradle and Groaning-Chair must also be bought and made ready, and the Mantles which had served his former old wife were too much out of fashion to be used now, (it is well if the best of them will serve for an ordinary Blanket) and a new one must be bought; and not one would serve the turn, but several there must be; one for the Chamber, another for to carry the Child abroad in, in Summer; another warmer, for the Winter; and above all these, there must be one costly one, wherin the Child must be dressed to be Christned in; (for it is too mechanical and base to use that of the Midwives) and it may be another must be had to be spread upon the Bed. All these things were provided, and the Clouts and other linnen being made, several Washers and Starchers were employed to wash, starch, rub, slick, pinch, and make up this parcel, which must be laid up in sweet-powder in her new Chest of Drawers. These things being thus provided, She had not yet done, but still wanted more, but especially 2 or 3 baskets, one whereof being of fine wicker or rods, or else of Wire-work and beads; or else wire-work and Cloves, or somewhat else that is more fantastical, and by consequence more costly, and one of these She had, and with it at least 20 dozen yards of several Colours of penny-Ribons to be tied in curious knots about the Basket. All these things the good old man gave money to his Wife to provide; and these pretty things together amounted to a great sum. But all of them was nothing considerable to her next demand, & that was a Cup-boards-head of Plate: some there was in the house, viz. a beer-bowl, a Beaker, a Salt, and a dozen Apostle Spoons; but these must be changed, and others provided; viz. one large Tanckard, two smaller, of an equal size, one Plate, one Sugar-dish, two or three Porringets, two Caudle-cups, two dozen of Spoons, a couple of Candlesticks, one pair of Snuffers; and such a large Inventory of this kind of Ware she did reckon up, that it troubled her Husband, and almost broke his heart to think how to satisfie the ambitious humour of his wife; but knowing that there was no quietness without, he also bought and provided all these several parcels, and upon every piece of Plate their Coats of Arms were engraven: If I should reckon up all the other things, Sugar, Spice, Wine, and Sweet-meats to be used at the Crying out; to which was added Westphalia Hams, Neats-Tongues, Geese, and such kind of Victuals as would toll down the Liquor, and make the womens tongues run glib; but above all a groaning Cheese; and then other sorts of Provisions, as Quilts for the Bed, Sheets, Pillowbeers, Cloaks for her self to sit up in, Pinners, Gloves, and a world of such kind of trinckets,) I should not please you, but tire my self: but the time of her crying out being near at hand, She tired the Midwife, Nurse, and Servants, and her Husband too, with her continual false Alarms. But at length, her full time being come, and the fruit being ripe, it must fall: and after all this diligence in watching and attendance, and great Cost and Charges in the Provision aforesaid, She was delivered of one of the worser sort, a pitiful piss-kitchin puling-Girle: Although their expectations were all frustrated, as expecting a Son and Heir, yet it could not be, they must be content; and the woman was well enough satisfied, as being told that when a Boy is born, the Father is better pleased; and when a Girl, then the Mother; and She believing this Maxime to be true, hoped that it was a good Omen that she should, for the future, prevail over, and Command her Husband.

The Child being born, & likely enough to live, the women fell to, and in an hours time eat up, and drank off all this provision, & then their tongues ran like so many Mill-clacks; every one handling, dandling, kissing, & spending their Verdict about this Bantling. One said, it was as like the Father as if it had been spit out of his mouth; another, that it had his very Nose; a third, that it was mouth'd like the Mother; and a fourth, that it had its Fathers eyes; and thus they all spent their Verdicts: and although they all spake differently of the Child, yet all must and did conclude that it was very like the Father. He poor man was called up amongst them, and according to custome being to kiss all the women, was much puzled to do it in an orderly manner; for she that was finest, thought her self to be best, and therefore first to be saluted; she that was eldest expected the same: and accordingly several of them put themselves forwarde, so that he did not know when he had done; but a length they all having joyed him of his young Daughter, they sat down, and then he kissed his little one, but durst not do so to his wife with for the Nurses leave, lest she should exact the usual fee of a pair of Gloves; wherefore he seeing that there was Charge enough already, was resolved to avoid all that he could. His wife now having a Child must have all fitting appendixes and attendants to it; and she being resolved not to give her self the trouble of nursing it her self, and being withal too fond of her Baby to have it out of her sight, therefore Nurses were sought out, viz. a dry-Nurse, and a wet-Nurse; one to suckle the Child, and another to wash the Glouts, and rock and attend it; besides a third, to attend the woman. But although she did not resolve to suckle the Child her self, yet she had a considerable trouble to dry up her Milk; for She was forced to have a woman to draw her Breasts first; and then to use Towe. Sage-Possets, and other things, to dry it up. This was her trouble; but her Husbands trouble and Charges were intollerable. There was every day something or another wanting; and he being resolved to manage his affairs himself, and receive and pay all, had enough to do; and it almost broke his heart to see how trivially and vainly his money was drawn from him upon his wives account. He now wished his old Wife alive, or that he had not tried the troublesome effects of being married to a young woman; but this his repentance came too late; and seeing he could not help it, he was resolved to bear all patiently.

The Child and Wife being both now in a fit condition the Child was to be Christned; the trouble of getting or procuring God-Fathers and God-Mothers was little trouble to him, for he had too great an acquaintance to be unprovided of choice of them. But the charge of that Ceremony was very chargeable. There was Gloves for the Midwife, Deputy-Midwife, Nurses, Servitors, and all his Servants; and such costly Services for the women, as cost him many a sigh to consider of it. And this being over, his house was every day filled with Gossipings, who although, as is usual, they brought the meat, yet he found the sawce, which was always as chargeable as the rest. And he was used to say on these like occasions, that although the Guests brought their own Victuals, yet he that laid the Cloath paid the greatest share. There was such revelling and noise, such laughing and merry-making, this his head was so disordered, that he neglected and could not keep his accounts in their usual method.

But as all times run on and will have their period, so this time had an end, but his Charge had none; for his wife being able to sit up and appear to her Gossips, in that posture She was to be provided with a new morning-Gown, and Sattin Cloke to sit up in; and no sooner was that made, but order was given for a new Tabbee-Gown, and Sattin-Peticoat for her to go abroad in, it being, as they told him, a beggarly business to permit his wife to wear old Clothes at her first going abroad; and the Exchange was examined for all the newest fashion'd appurtenances, that in every thing she might appear like his wife; and all this, they told him, must necessarily be done for his Credit. Although he knew it was more for his profit & Credit too to be furnished with large bags full of ready money to pay people on his necessary occasions, yet he was forced to empty some of them in these extravagant vanities. A great Feast being made on that day moneth that his wife was brought to bed, and She being then Churched, and having walked abroad to shew her self in her new Clothes, at night he thought he should quietly have gone to bed to her, but he was forbidden that by the Nurse, because forsooth, all the groaning-Cheese was not eaten up; but he being willing to put an end to all these fooleries together, and hoping this was the last of them, compounded with her, and so he had admittance. And thus was all this great troublesome and chargeable business ended.

Thus (continued Mrs. Jane) was the Charge and trouble of this business over, but the continued Charge and trouble that his wife still put him to on all occasions, did not cease, but did so afflict and torment him, that he often wished himself unmarried.

CHAP. XX.

 

In short time after the Old Mans Wife is with child again, and brought to bed of a Son, to the great Charge of the Father. The Old Mans ways of getting Moneys, and his covetous humour of stealing Bricks; he is caught in the manner, and made to pay for it; also he is forced to wade through the water by his Covetousness. The extravagancies of the young Son; who being corrected by his School-Master, in revenge breaks his windows: His Mother locks him up, and he cuts her Chairs and Stools in pieces; his Father threatens to correct him, and he pretends to be drowned; he gets Money from his Father, rambles, and spends it; and coming home, his Father again threatning him, he pretends to be hanged.

Whether our Old Blade was pleased with his Nights lodging with his Wife, I know not, but I am sure he was displeased with the effects of that, or some suddenly after; for it was not long ere his wife discovered her self to be with child again; and then there was not only the second part to the same tune, but also much more trouble; for She breeding this great Belly worse than the other, was more troublesome; and concluding by this difference in her breeding, that now she should have a different birth, a Son to her Daughter, She told the Old man that she was confident of it; and so indeed it proved: for at the usual time She was brought to Bed of a Son, but he was a chargeable one to the Old Man in his birth, and a cross to him all his life after. Much provision was made to entertain their young Heir; and although the woman was well enough provided before, yet now there were additions to every thing, and all the House was altered, and turned topsie-turvy; two Rooms beat into one, to make a Hall bigg enough to entertain the Guests the more commodiously; and a suit of Tapestry-Hangings, and Turky-work Chairs, and other Furniture to adorn it; and should I run through all the several alterations and additions that were then made, I should be as troublesome to you, as this woman was to her Husbands Money-bags: wherefore I will omit all things of that nature to your imaginations, and only tell you, in general, that this woman was as profuse in her expences as she could imagine; so that her Husband, after this lying in, did give her an account of her expences, and made out clearly to her, that She had cost him, in alterations in his House, and these two Lyings in, full as much as he had with her for Portion; and therefore he knowing the virtue of ready money, was resolved not to be over-ruled by her any longer, and be led to these vain extravagancies. Although his Estate, and profit and gains of his Trade would well enough bear with these expences, yet he being naturally covetous, being now grown old, that Vice was encreased; and knowing that now he had two Children to provide for, he scrap'd up all he could, pretending to his wife it was for her and them; so that now his Purse was close shut against all her requests and entreaties; and not long after a fair opportunity of a good Customer happening, he sold off all his Stock in Trade, Utensils and House; and having an estate large enough for him to manage without Trading, he left off all imployment, and retired, taking a House a few miles off from London; thither did he carry his wife and familay: and now in this private way he designed to sve; for now there was no occasion of feasting and entertaining Friends, as before. The wife was now cut off from deceiving the old man of his Moneys, because he seldom kept any in his House, leaving that still, as it came to hand, at his Scriveners in London, and bringing home no more than would serve to keep house: and now all that She could handsomely get was by cheating him in her Marketting; for She would pretend that parcel of meat which cost her ten Shillings, did cost her twelve or thirteen, and so of the rest. So that She brought the Old man to allow her fourty Shillings per week to keep the House; and then She pinched his Guts, and made him look out abroad for Victuals; at home She would make a neck of Mutton serve for three dressings, and would give him of the worst; but he made his belly amends by visiting of Friends, who treated him; he was one of the Masters of the Company of which he was a freeman; he was one of the Masters of the Parish, where he had long dwelt; he was one of the Masters of one or two Hospitals; and as long-liv'd over-grown rich Citizens usually are, so was he in all these places, and many more; so that there was seldom a week in the year, and sometimes never a day in the week, but he was invited to one of these Assemblies; where he did eat at the cost of others, and not only eat, but carry away in his Hawking-bag, which he wore by his side on purpose, although he pretended it was to carry Papers and writings which he had occasion to use; and this Hawking-bag was seldom empty; for when he was at any of these Feasts, or at any other Treatment by a friend, he would stuff it full of such Provant as best liked him; and now having the conveniencie of carriage, he would also steal Knives; nay, rather then fail, Candles-ends, and put them into his Hawking-bag; and I have known that sometimes his Covetousness hath carried him further, to steal quarries of glass out of the windows of the House where he hath been, and thereby damage other folks windows to mend his own.

These were the effects of his Covetousness, but he was catch'd in one trick, and made to pay soundly for it, and thus it was: His house being a few miles from London, he usually went and came every day, sometimes on Horsback, but usually on foot; he had occasion for a parcel of bricks to build a small brick wall, to divide a yard; and seeing in his way between London and home that there was a Brick-kiln, and withal that it was usual with people to take one or two, he did so likewise; and still when he went home on foot, he would take 2, 3, or 4, and clapping them under his Cloak, carry them home. At times he had thus carried home as many as would neer build his wall; but the owner of the Brick-kiln being acquainted with his doings, and his covetous inclination, was resolved to catch him, and make him pay for it; wherefore he watched him, and catcht him with four bricks under his arm: How now? my friend, said the Brick-maker, What have you gotten under your Cloke? Nothing, nothing, replied our Old Dotard: I must see, said the other; and thereupon threw open his Cloak, and discovered the prize: what do you with these Bricks? said the Owner: and thereupon being resolved what to do, called his Servants, and went before a Justice of Peace with the Old man; who being thus caught, could not deny the fact; but the Owner charged him with many thousand of Bricks, which, he said, he had lost; and so ordered the matter, that he made our Old man pay more than his Brick-wall might have been honestly built for; and thus did his Covetousness bring him to shame and disgrace; but he still persevered in it, though it were sometimes to his dammage.

He being one evening going home, and passing by a River, saw two men a fishing; he not being in haste, stepp'd to a sandy-bank that was in the River, and stood there some time to see them, and that so long, that the Tide being come in, he was encompassed with water, and did not perceive it; and there he was in great care and fear how to come out; he durst not adventure to wade; but seeing a labouring-man come by, he cried out to him, for Heavens sake to come and help him out, and he would reward him very largely, and withal pulled out his purse of money, shewing him that he was furnished with that which would recompence him for his pains. The poor man seeing that attractive Metal, and hoping that he might get as much for a small job as he had gained all the day, he therefore without any more ado wades through the water to the place where our Old fellow was; and being come thither, took him in his arms and carried him through the water, and so set him down; he being now out of danger, cried, the Lord bless you, honest man, I will reward you; and thereupon drawing his Purse, fumbled in it, turning his money over and over, and finding three farthings, gave them to the poor man, telling him, if he could have found the fourth, he should have had it; he all this while stood with his Cap in hand, with a God bless your worship; but being deceived in his expectations, he was resolved to be even with the old Dotard, and therefore clapping his Cap on his head, he caught hold on the old fellow, and taking him in his arms, stept into the water, and carried him to, and set him down in the place where he had took him up, and there left him; and being come again ashore, said to the old man, Sir, since you are so bountiful in your reward, I thought it fit to earn my money by carrying you twice as far as you intended; the Old man, called out to him, desiring him for all loves to carry him out, but he was deaf to all perswasions, and therefore left him; so that the Old man doubting that he should be drowned, was enforced to wade through, as he saw the fellow had done; and so he went home dropping dry.

Thus was he sometimes catch'd, but what he lost, or what dammage soever he sustained, he made others pay for it, especially his Debtors, for he still caused them to feast him; and he was not content with what he could eat or drink, but he must carry away, not only in his Hawking-bag, but he had another Utensil, a silver Sucking-bottle, and still this was filled at other folks charges, either with Canary or strong Waters; and this the Old fellow drank off as he travelled, or else emptied out when he came home, keeping it for a reserve. And as he pinched, and scraped together from others, so his wife did from him; and that she saved She expended, or preserved for her young Son; who was no sooner come to be eight years of age, but he shewed forth the most vitious and debauched inclination of any youth in the place where he dwelt; and hir Mother cockering him, and encouraging him in his follies, it was not hard to guess at his future deportment; so that all concluded that he would use the fork in dispersing and scattering abroad, as well as his Father had used the take in gathering & scraping together; & that he would spend that under the Divels belly, which his Father had gained over the Divels back; and to manage him in his early debaucheries, his Mother supplied him with Moneys, which was like putting a Sword into a Mad-mans hand; for he employed that, to do as much mischief: by that time he come to be ten years of age, his Sister died; and now he being the only Child, was much more humoured by his Mother.

The Father prosecuted his ways of getting Money by Usury, and left the whole management of the Son to his wife; neither indeed would she permit him to be under his tuition, or be instructed by him, left, as she said, he should be infected with Covetousness, and other his ill Qualities. He being Master of moneys, was thereby Master of all the Boys that dwelt near him; and he spending money on them still, had them at his dispose; and they not being supplied by their Parents with Moneys as he was, would sometimes steal from them to keep him company; he raised a whole Company of these Boys, and became their Captain; and if he had a mind to do any mischief to any other Boys, he could presently execute it by one of these. He would not go to School to that Master that once whipped him, neither would his Mother permit that her Son, how deservedly soever, should be corrected, but strait took him away from School; and he rather went not at all to be instructed, than would admit of any correction. He being for his untowardness lashed by one of his School-masters, went away, and would, to be reveng'd of his Master, abuse and affront him, and those that took his part; the School-master hearing of it, caused a couple of the lustiest of his Scholars to catch him, and bring him into the School, where he causing him to be untrussed and horsed, lashed him soundly, giving him School-butter, & then sent him away. This affront our young man stomached exceedingly, and was resolved to revenge it; wherefore he assembled those of his Companions who were sed to assist him in any mischievous undertaking; and acquainting them with his purpose, they promised their ready assistance; and he not caring, so it were done, how it were done, took up a parcel of stones, and a Cudgel in his hand, and causing all the rest of his Company to do so too, they advanced to the School-Masters house, where they all at once discharged a whole volley of stones against the windows, and after that another; by this time the School-Master himself was alarm'd, and looking out of the School-window, had like to have had his Teeth beaten out with a stone; which however shook and loosened two or three: The Scholars seeing this affront put on their Master, all ran down to revenge it; and catching up what sticks and stones they could first meet with, began a dangerous fight, which continued till the Constable came to part them; there were several on both sides wounded, and the School-Masters windows were much dammaged; wherefore he knowing who was the Ring-leader of this Rout, had him secured, and carried before the Justice, where the School-Master made his complaint with reason enough; but our young mans father was so intimate with the Justice, that the poor School-Master could have no Justice done him; but the young man being soundly checkt, was sent home to his Mother. His father doubting that these exorbitant courses would be dangerous, was resolved to correct his Son, but his Mother would not let him come under his disciplination, but would undertake to correct him her self: He who had never yet been contradicted in any thing that was his will, was very unwilling now to take any correction; and although that which his Mother intended was but small, yet he would not endure it. All she did to him was to lock him up in a Chamber for two or three days, till she could humble him; but he was too stiff now to stoop to her or any body else; wherefore when he had been kept in one whole day, his Mother coming to visit him, she found him more stubborn than before; and he threatned, that if she kept him in, he would be even with her: she ventured him the second day, and came to him again at night, but found no amendment, but tokens of a high stomack; she told him, she must and would break him; he said, she could not, nor should not; and if she kept him within any longer she should have cause to repent it. She was resolved to try, but he was as good as his word; for getting a Knife, he had cut all her fine Chairs and Stools to pieces; she seeing this, was passionately angry, and turned him out of the Room; gave him over to be Corrected by his Father; who understanding the mischief he had done, was resolved to punish him severely, and to that end made preparations. The Servants in the House advised him to submit himself to his Father and Mother, and ask forgiveness, and that they would undertake all should be well again; but he would not yield, but was resolved to take another course; wherefore he provided himself with necessaries, and thus he did.

He went to a Pond, about a mile from his Fathers House, and putting off his Clothes, went into the Water, and staid there some time, so that he was seen, and observed by several Boys, who were there a washing; he out-staid them all, and then dressed himself, and having brought out with him two Hats, and two pair of shooes, and stockings; he threw one hat into the Pond, and left one pair of shooes, and stockings, by the Pond side, and so went to a Neighbours house near home, and hid himself in a Barn.

The Father being resolved to fetch him up the next morning, expected his coming home that Night, but to no purpose, for he came not; and although diligent inquiry was made among the Neighbour-hood, yet there was no news to be heard of him. The Father was troubled, but the Mother much more, not knowing what was become of him: early the next morning all the Servants were sent out several wayes to inquire after him; at length, some of his Companions were met withall, who, upon inquiry, told them, that they had seen him the Evening before, in such a Pond; the Servants hearing this, went thither, and there they saw the killing sight of the hat, and shooes, and stockings; they then concluded, as he had intended they should, that he was drowned; those remains of his being, as they thought, but too sure evidence of that fatal truth. They inquired no further at present, but went home, and told their Master, and Mistress, the sad news of their Sons misfortune: he was much dejected at the telling of that dismal Relation, but she was now as one distracted, exclaiming against her Husband, whose severity towards her dear Son, she said, had been the cause of this his unhappy Fate: her Friends could not comfort her, neither could her Husbands perswasions work any thing upon her, but that she would go to the place where her Son had perished. Her Husband disswaded her against this, and promised that he would have the Pond searched, and thereupon gave order to employ a couple of Fellows to rake the Pond all over, but to no purpose; for although they were paid for their pains, yet they lost their labour.

And now the Father finding that the Body of his Son was not to be found dead, was in hopes that he might yet hear of him alive; and he endeavoured to perswade his Wife into this opinion.

In the mean time our young Gentleman lay perdue in the Neighbours Barn; and being provided with sufficient Provant, was as safe as a Thief in a Mill; and although he was at that distance from home, yet he could hear of the distraction his Father and Mother were in, for it was all the news of the place; that Mr. R's Son was drowned, to the great grief of his Father & Mother: he was well pleased to hear that they were so ill pleased; and thought now he should be revenged on them that were resolved to be revenged on him; the consideration of his Mothers sorrow was great joy to him, and he hoped to reap this benefit, that he might, for the future, rule, and reign in his Roguery; hoping that his Father and Mother would leave him to his own dispose, lest he should hereafter do that in earnest, that they would now find in jest: but thinking that they had not as yet suffered enough for what they had made him suffer, a two dayes imprisonment, whereas he had not been wanting above one day; he was therefore resolved to stay there a little longer, but he was soon after discovered; for being somewhat cleanly, and leaving his Lodging, to go into the Yard to untruss, one of the Family came and saw him; he would have fled, but his Breeches being about his heels hindred him; so that, at the exclamation of that party who saw him, all the rest of the Family where he was hid came out to him; and seeming joyed to see him, asked him a hundred questions at once, to which he gave them never a word of answer; but they minded not his humour much, but being joyful of his safety, now spake of acquainting his Father and Mother therewith; he knowing they would do so, and that quickly, told them that they might do so; but withal, he desired them to enjoyn his Father and Mother both, not to ask him any Questions; for if they did, he said he would not answer them; and besides, it was likely it would be the worse for them, and him both. They hearing what he said, did not inquire into his reasons for what he had said, but went home to his Parents, and told them how it was. At this joyful news the Father was well pleased; but the Mother was so overjoyed, that she could not contain her self from running to the place where he was; and there she discovered the excess of her joy, by the excess of her passion, which hurried her on to Extravagancies, in embracing, and kissing her Graceless Son, who received her expressions of Love with much indifferency and coldness: She did not observe that, but took all at the best; and being joyed that she had him in her sight, lead him home.

The Father being acquainted with his Son's Injunction, that he must not be asked any Questions, concluded from thence the true reason of it; however, he dissembled his knowledge, and, to humour his Wife and Son, said nothing to him, but commanded that he used no more of these tricks, and that then all that had passed already should be forgotten. The Son gave him the hearing, but was resolved to take his own swinge; and by this occasion knowing the extreme love his Mother had for him, made very ill use of it, venturing to do any thing though never so debauched. For if his Mother did not give him enough, he would steal it from her, and all her locking up from him was to as little purpose, as her Husbands locking up from her; for her Son would frequently come at her money; and she would as often come at the Old mans: who was so accustomed to be dispossessed of what money he had by his wife, that sometimes the Son met with it, and disappointed his Mother; but it was all as one, for that if she did get it, it was but to bestow on him.

The Old man seeing that his Locks and Keys would not keep his money secure, found out other inventions to hide it, which he did in ordinary unsuspected places, as among the Sea-coals, or in some hole of the House, or Garden. But the Son one time met with a purse of ten pound; and that being too much to be spent in one day, he staid out a whole week; his Mother was now distracted as before, for his absence, but the father soon missing his money, and believing that his Son had met with it, was satisfied that he would stay abroad till it was spent, and so he did; for at the weeks end he came home as confidently, as if he had done no harm. Although his Mother, out of joy for the return of her Prodigal, was well enough satisfied with his theft, yet the Old man once more was resolved to correct him; and therefore getting him up into a Garret, locked him up till such time as he might prepare himself for the Correction he intended. This young Extravagant being thus incarcerated, set his wits at work how to get out; at length he found a Gutter-window, and saw that he might get out to the top of the House; this he resolved to do, but withal he intended once again to put his Mother to the fright; and thereupon searching the Garret, he found all sorts of materials and utensils fit for his design; he first took an old Doublet and Breeches, and stuffed them full of rags, straw, and such rubbish as he could find, and then he took shooes and stockings, and stuffed the stockings full of bran; & making somewhat like a head, he put his hat on it; and putting the Coat he wore over all this, he put a rope about the neck of this Scare-crow, and so hanged it on one of the beams in the Garret; when he had put his matters in this order, he sat down, and being very well pleased at his own invention, laughed as heartily now, as he knew his Mother would cry when she came to see it; and having thus bestowed this Scar-crow, he got out to the top of the house, and sat there perdue, expecting the event.

His Father being provided with all things necessary for the correction he intended him, mounted up stairs, and with him a Neighbour whom he had called to his assistance; and being come to the Garret-door, and having opened it, he cried out, where are you, Sirrah, that I may correct you: there was no answer, nor Son to be seen, (as he expected) walking; but it was not long ere he saw him, as he supposed, hanging between Heaven and Earth. Although the Old man came with a resolution to chastise his Son, yet he at this killing spectacle fell down, and appeared more dead than alive; and the man who accompanied him, seeing the Son, as he supposed, hanging, quite dead, and the Father in little better condition, he ran down and allarm'd the house with this deadly news. The Mother, although she was ready to fall down dead with grief, yet her distraction hurried her to the place of her Sons supposed execution, that she might die there; by such time as she was come thither, the Father was come to himself, but was almost killed again with the bitter words she gave him, telling him, that he was her Sons murderer, calling him wretched old Rogue, and using terms the most vile and outragious she could imagine; and then she fell into a violent fit of crying, and tearing her cloaths and hair, so that she seemed quite distracted: her Son heard all this, and laugh'd at the conceit that his project had so well taken; and the Mother, now in another fit, arising, went to catch hold of her Sons body, which she supposed was hanging; but when she came to it, thinking to grasp it, it being light, flew from her at the first touch, and the hat falling off, it was soon discovered what it was. All present were amazed at the contrivance; but the Mother still continued crying out, if this be not, where then is my Son? At this all sought about the room; and at length one looking out at the Garret-window, saw him sit on the house-top; his mother was soon acquainted with this pleasant news; to which she soon replied, Oh, bring him in: but he hearing her, replied, that if his Father did not go down and leave threatning of him, he would throw himself from the house-top, and kill himself in earnest: the Father thinking that the desperate humour might take him, was forced to be content; and so our young man descended the house, and came in at the window, to the great joy of his sorrowful Mother.

CHAP. XXI.

 

Our young Extravagant cheats his Father of more money by receiving Rent; which being spent, he returned home; and his Mother refusing to give him what money he desired, she being on Horse-back behind him, he threatens to throw her into the water, and so he obtains it of her. The Old man dies, and he prosecutes his extravagancies upon Water-men, Coach-men, and a poor Pudding-woman; he also puts a trick upon a Barber; and plays a fine freak at a Coffee-house; and being Poetical, makes Verses on Canary.

By this Project our young man escaped the correction his Father intended him; and not only so, but his Mother now looking on him as one twice risen from the dead, was so foolishly fond, as to hug and embrace him; all this he took in good part, as knowing this fond humour of his Mothers would turn to his advantage; for he having now put her twice to this fright, she was fearful that the third time would prove fatal in earnest; wherefore she now supplied him with moneys to excess; and he spent it as prodigally, as he came by it lightly. But the good Old man keeping her short, her stock was not large enough to supply him in all his excesses; and then the Old man lead a weary life with his wife, till she procured him to give her Son, who was now fifteen years of age, a certain allowance: he demanded fifty pound a year, besides his Diet; but this the Old man said was unreasonable; and he alledged, it would be more to the profit of his Son, and himself both, to put him out to be an Apprentice to a good Trade; but neither the Mother nor Son would give any hearing to this Proposition; but, in answer to it, the Mother said, what, and have I but one Child, and must he be made a servant? I scorn it; sure you intend to make some body else your Heir, some Bastards that you have abroad, or else you would not offer to desire, or think that your only Son & Heir should be an Apprentice, and make clean shooes, and sweep the street-doors; have I bred him up to this? Thus did the woman answer her Husband, and so put him by from ever making any more such offers; and she alledging that her Son was now man enough to manage an estate of five hundred pound per annum; and that therefore his Father might do well to entrust him with fifty pound per annum; but he still alledging it was too much, and it would spoil him; at last, after a long contest, fourty pound per annum was agreed on: The Old man now intending thus much for his Son, gave him two Acquittances to go to two of his Tenants to receive five pound a piece of them, it being their last Quarters Rent.

The young man supposing himself a Landlord, went among the Tenants; and intending to outwit his Father, managed his Affairs accordingly; wherefore when he came to the place where some of his Fathers Tenants dwelt, he went to a two Pot-house, and sent for three or four of them which he best knew, and telling them that his Father had ordered him to receive that Quarters Rent, withal produced the two Acquittances he had; these two paid him presently; and the rest did so likewise, he telling them, that he had left their Acquittances under his Fathers own hand at home; but that he would give them Acquittances with his hand to his Fathers use, which would do as well. This excuse went as current, and the Tenants were well pleased to pay their money to him, and thereby hoped to ingratiate themselves with their young Landlord; and thus he received twenty pound, instead of the ten pound intended; and had received more of the other Tenants, if his Father, suspecting some such matter, had not gone, and by his presence prevented it.

There he soon found what his Son had done; which however turned somewhat to his advantage: for all the Tenants hearing their young Landlord had been there, and expecting him to come again, suddenly had provided all the rent, hoping by that means to gain his good opinion, and a Treatment to boot, as the rest had done: so that now the Old man received all the rent at his first coming, whereas he was wont to come half a dozen times. And now having received his rents, he went home to his wife, telling her, how their Son had served him; to which she replied, that it was no matter, for to her knowledge he was bare, and quite out of moneys before, and that this would stock him. And now she having gained an allowance for her Son, she never left her Husband, till he increased her own, and gave her money to buy her some Clothes, as she pretended; and all this was to lay up for her unlucky-Bird, who, as his father said, staid out till all was spent; and that was within so many days as he had pounds: and he being rid of his money, returned home to pillage his Mother. He had made no spare of his money so long as it lasted, in hopes to receive more of his Fathers Tenants; but he came thither too late, his Father having been there before him; so that being disappointed, he came home, and very quietly he demeaned himself for some time.

But the humour of rambling again possessing him, he courted his Mother for money; she gave him some, but it was but sparingly, and he stomacked it, because he had no moe. A few days after, his Mother was to ride to London, to lay out some moneys in necessaries; and she being desirous of his Company caused him to ride before her; they being thus mounted together, put on very handsomely, till being come about half way, he guided the Horse into a Pond; she wondring, asked him his reason; he told her, only to water the Horse; but when the Horse was now in as far, and as deep as he could go, he shewed her another reason, told her another tale, and desired her to give him some money; she replyed, she had none for him; he answered, that he knew she had money about her, and therefore he must, and would have some; she said, that she had no more but what she was to lay out, and if she gave him any, she must lose her Journey; he cared not for that, but told her, that if she did not give him some money, he would throw her into the Pond, and thereby enforce her to lose her Journey; and he swore to it, that he would do it. She doubting he would be as good as his word, was forced to compound the matter with him, and of five pounds, which she had about her, she hardly compounded with him for fifty shillings; which he would not take her word for, but she was forced there, as she was on Horse-back, to deliver it to him, and then he rode on; but although she had her Sons Company to London , and paid so dear for it, yet she was forced to go home without him, he being there engag'd upon the Ramble for so long as that money would last, and then home he came again; and this trick he would serve her as often as he wanted money, and could get her on Horse-back behind him; and as he gained, and filched from her, so she did the same from the Old man; and all little enough to maintain her Prodigal Sons extravagancies. And this was the course of life they all lead.

The young man he spent largely, and pinched all he could from his Mother; she cheated her Husband egregiously to supply his Prodigality; and the old man he screwed all he could get, most shamefully, and penuriously, out of his Tenants, and Debtors, to supply them both. These were his Tormentors that still kept him in perplexity; and in the end, what with Age, and grief at their miscarriages, he dyed, leaving all behind him to their disposing.

The Son was joyful, neither was the Mother discontented; and the old man had, at his death, made as prudent a Will as he could devise: for knowing that what he gave to the Mother, he gave to the Son; he dividing his Estate into three parts, gave two to her, and one to him; hoping by such time as he should have spent one third part, he might take up, and be wiser, and then his Mother would be fit to give him another portion.

As soon as the Old Man was dead, order was taken for his Burial, which was by the Mother and Sons appointment splendid enough; but although the Son attended his Fathers Corps to the Grave, yet the Mother would not, as pretending to be ill, and withal that it was a thing not in fashion; under this pretence she staid at home: but there was a greater, and more urgent cause; for she had a lusty Suitor who attended her, and him she kept Company withall. The Son saw his Fathers Corps put into the ground, and was so wretched, as to command the Grave-maker to put him deep enough, lest he should rise again; and now seeing his Fathers Body fast enough, he went a Rambling, and that very night was taken in the Watch at his return home; but being known, he was passed the Watch, and coming home heard how his Mother had bestowed her time in his absence; this raised some doubts and scruples in his mind, doubting that she might, and would Marry, and then defeat him of his expectations; wherefore, although he was not yet twenty years of Age, yet he desired his Portion, but that could not be; however, such course was taken by some of his Fathers Friends, that his Portion was secured for him; and in the mean time, it was agreed, that he should have a considerable allowance. But all this did not please him; for although what was allowed him was sufficient to maintain him handsomly, yet he spent three times as much, and ran into every bodyes score that would trust him; he was soon aweary of his Mourning Apparel, and therefore in few moneths threw that off, and a Suit that cost fifty pounds was provided; in this he did vaunt it, and Rant it about the Town, and all the loose fellows of no Fortunes were his hangers on, or Companions. He spun away the time of his Non-age with all impatience; but when that happy, and long-wished-for-day came, he was the joyfullest man aiive. By that time his Mother was Married to the Suitor who had put in so early; but being cunning (as most Widdows are) she had reserved her Sons Estate entire, and not only so, but a considerable part of her own; so that her Husband had not above one third part of the whole. And now her Son without any controul, demanded, and received his full Portion; many hard words passed between Mother and Son on that account, so that they fell out in earnest; and he taking what was his due, gave her the good bu'y.

And now was the time come that he took his full swinge in all manner of voluptuousness and debauchery. Taverns were the best places he frequented, as having somewhat for his money: But that expence was not deep enough; he hunted out, and frequented all Houses of good fellowship.

All the most eminent Bona Roba's about the Town were of his acquaintance; and he was not content to have their Company in common, but searching out those that best pleased him, he took them from their publick employment, and kept them for his own private pleasures, disposing them in several places, as he had occasion to use them; and commonly keeping three or four of these at Livery; and, which was worse than all this, that he might put the sooner dispatch to his Estate, he frequented Ordinaryes, and Gaming-Houses, and there suffered himself to be cheated to some purpose.

The Mother hearing of these his exorbitant extravagancies, went, and sent to him (for he would not come to her) to disswade him from these courses; but instead of that, he returned wild and extravagant answers, upbraiding her with her sensuallity in her second Marriage; and expressed himself so rudely on that account, that I am ashamed to repeat it.

I will relate some particulars of extravagancies, because it exceeds all that I have ever heard of. He went one time to the Temple stairs, and perceiving a great many Water-men, both Oars, and Scullers, attending for fares, but more especially for the Lawyers of that place, to carry them to Westminster, it being Term time; and being resolved on a frollick, to disappoint them, he hired all of them, to carry him, and two, or three of his Companions, to the Old Swan; so that when the Lawyers came to take Boat, there was none for them; and they were forced to beat upon the hoof, or be at the charge of Coaches. Another time, he being importuned by Watermen, who usually clutter about a Fare, striving who shall earn the money; and only having occasion to cross the Water, he hired four of them to transport him just over, and gave them six pence a piece for their pains; and then they wanting other employment, he told them, that if they would fight with one another, he would give them six pence a piece more; and he, to invite them to it, caused them to quarrel with one another, and so to it they fell lustily; he standing by, and laughing at them.

Thus did he use the Water-men; and he was as Extravagant with the Coach-men; for sometimes, although he valued not his Money, yet he would, in a frollick, get out of the Coach, and leave them in the hurry to look their pay-master; but if they knew, and met with him again, and demanded it handsomly, he would pay them double.

He met with one Coach-man, a surly, dogged fellow, and he served him accordingly; for he had been hurrying about, from one place to another, to find out Company, all that Afternoon; and at night he demanded of the Coachman what he must have; he replyed, eight shillings, which was too much by three shillings; and he not being in the humour to part from his money so slightly, and being withal very well acquainted with the prices of Hackney-Coachmen, he, for that time, refused to give him his demands; and the fellow began to be surly, peremptory, and sawcy; so that he had a great mind to have beaten him: but seeing he was a rugged fellow, he would not venture on that Revenge, but bethought himself of another; which he thus effected.

Well, replyed he to the Coach-man, I will content you, before we part; but now I think on it, I must go a little further, to such a place, naming it. The Coach-man was content; and thereupon, he, and his Servant went into the Coach; it was now dark, it being Winter; and he had the better conveniency of executing his project; which he did thus. He drew out his Knife, and he, and his Man together, did cut all the leather round on the back of the Coach, leaving it hanging by the top; and by this time being come to the place he appointed, he was there set down, and gave the Coach-man his hire; who, not perceiving the dammage done to his Coach, departed; and our Gallant drinking a quart of Wine, and calling for another Coach, was carried home.

The next day, the Coach-man, after much inquiry, found out our Gentlemans Quarters; and waiting his coming out, told him, that he had done him forty shillings worth of dammage in cutting the Leather of his Coach; he denied the fact, and bid him prove it: the other told him, that he would take his oath of it before any Justice of the Peace; and if (said he) you will not give me satisfaction, I will have you before a Justice, and he will compel you to do it. Our Gentleman hearing him talk so of the Justice, was resolved to frighten the fellow, and out-wit him; and therefore he replied, Nay, then, if you talk of a Justice, you were best have a care of your self how you come there, lest I have you sent to New-Gate. For what? replied the Coach-man. You need not make so strange of it, replied our Gallant; you believe no body saw you yesterday what you did in the field near Putney, where you carried me? Why, what did I do? replied the Coach-man. Why, you buggered a Sow there, replied our Gentleman. Oh Lord! said the Coach-man. And oh Lady too! said our Gentleman, it is too true, and you will find it so to your cost; both my self, and my man saw it, and will take our oaths of it if we go before the Justice. Our Gallants man, hearing what his Master had said, justified and averred the truth of it with an oath; which put the poor Coach-man into such a dump, that he went away with a flea in his ear, and durst not insist upon our Gentlemans payment for the dammage done to his Coach. This was the course our Extravagant took; these were the tricks he plaid: and in general, there was no manner of mischief but he put in practice; and he so much prided, and gloried in doing so, that although it were well known he was wicked enough, yet he would not talk and boast of more then he had done; and there was no particular debauched action, or extravagancy done in London, but he would boast himself to be the Author of it, and imitate it to his power. He had observed, that a poor Woman sat at one of the City Gates, and sold hot pudding by the pound; he had a crotchet came in his crown, to put a trick upon this Woman; and therefore having a Companion with him, he acquainted him with his intent, and desired his assistance. He who kept him company was as ready as his Worship for any mischief; and therefore together they came to this poor woman, who was newly come with her pudding piping hot from the Bake-house, and demanded the price; she told them four pence a pound: he agreed to the price, and she weighed out a pound: she had asked him, what he would do with it? for she, seeing his gaudy clothes, and partly knowing him, said, that he would not eat it. He replied, it was no matter to her what he did with it, so long as she was paid for it. She knowing he had said true, delivered it to him in a handkerchief. He having the pudding, drew out a six pence, and throwing it on the ground, bid her take it up. She stooping so to do, his Companion turned up her coats, and he clapt the hot pudding to her naked posteriors. The woman, feeling it hot, cried out amain; but he still held it there, and pressed it hard upon her, whereupon she leapt away from them; and being sensible that she was scalded, she ran to the kennel, and taking up her coats, clapt her bare buttocks in the dirt, to cool and asswage the heat, whilst our Extravagant, and his Companion, marched off. The woman was so paid off, that she could not follow her employment; and acquainting her Husband with the matter, and the party who, he, the next day, found him out, and demanded satisfaction for the dammage he had done to his Wife. Our Young man disowned the fact, and refused all satisfaction: but the Good man was sure enough that it was he; for by this time he had (according to his usual custom) bragged of this exploit; so that the man being in earnest, and telling him, that if he would not pay for the Cure, and the dammage he sustained by his wives neglect of her business, that he would arrest him, and compel him by Law. He therefore, in a humor, gave the man twenty shillings, and so ended this frollick of the Pudding-woman.

There hardly passed a day, but he was guilty of some frollick or other; and if he had the humour of doing, he would go through with it, though it cost his pockets never so dear: Some of his frollicks were somewhat more harmless, but altogether as comical and pleasant. If he had heard of any frollicks, though never so extravagant and old, he would attempt to do the like; and many such he did only in imitation, and to renew the discourse of them. As for example: he was used to have the Barber, for the most part, come to him; and although he had no beard (for he was never known to have above five hairs on one side of his face, and seven on the other) yet he was usually shaved every day. But one day he went to a Barbers to be trim'd; and sitting down in the Chair, the Barber fell to his work. He intended to have some frollick with this Barber; and the Barber gave him a very good occasion and opportunity: for the Barber having occasion to make water, and being somewhat lazy, pissed about his shop. Our Gallant asked his reason; and told him, it was a nasty trick. To which the Barber pleaded, for excuse, that it was no great matter; for he was to leave the shop in a weeks time, and to remove to another, and therefore it would not annoy him much. This action, and answer, fell out for our Gallant, as fit as a pudding for a Friers month; and therefore he was resolved to prosecute his intended project; and he did so tickle himself with laughing at the conceit that he intended, that the Barber could hardly shave him, without indangering the cutting of his throat or chaps. But that was done in time, and our Gentleman was delivered from the imprisonment of the chair; when in prosecution of his intended project, he asked Cutbert, whether he had any sorts of sweet powder? He shewed him what he had below, and that not pleasing him, he went up stairs to fetch more: no sooner did he mount up the stairs, but down went our Gallants breeches, and there, in the middle of the shop, he laid the biggest load he could exonerate himself of. He made all the haste he could, and just as the Barber descended down stairs, up went his breeches. The Barber, although he had sweet powder in his hand, yet he could not only smell, but see that there was somewhat in the shop that was not so sweet to the scent, nor pleasant to the sight; wherefore he also asked his Customer his reason for so doing? He replied, he had the very same reason, for disburthening himself, as he had; for, said he, I am to leave the shop presently, and it will not annoy me much. The Barber seeing that he was beaten at his own weapon, made no reply, but was forced to be content; and our Gallant left the shop and the Barber, to go among his Companions, to boast of this witty exploit. This was talk enough for him for some days. But he still studied, by such time as one was stale, to project and execute another; and it was not long after ere he met with one altogether as extravagant, and much like the other.

Although he was a great drinker, yet he did fight cunningly, & would not let one drop of wine go down his belly in the morning, nor hardly admit of any Mornings-draught though never so moderate; forbearing all drinking, till the affairs of the Gut, the eating were over; and then, as he used to say, it would do your heart good to see him take off his Liquor; especially Sack, which was his chiefest delight; and he would bear it very lustily, and with the help of a Coach get to his Lodging in very good order.

But one time he had missed and omitted this custome, and drank all day without eating, so that the next morning his belly and head were both filled with aiery humours, his belly aked and croaked, and his head was giddy, wanting settlement; wherefore some friends who came to visit him, advised him to drink some Coffee; he believing that in regard it was to be drunk hot, that it might ease his Guts, and qualifie his brain; went to a Coffee-house with them; where being sat down, and having put two warm dishes full into his Guts, it made him break wind forwards and backwards both; at which unusual noise among so many people as were there together, he was more than usually stared at; he minded not their staring, but continued his drinking, and withal observed the several postures used in drinking their Coffee, some he saw laid their nose, some their eyes, nay, and some their ears to the Coffee-dish, to let the smoke, or fume of the Coffee ascend; at this unusual sight, he asked the reason of it; and it was generally replied, that it was an excellent remedy against the Cold which they had gotten in those parts: he hearing them say so, had an extravagant humour come into his brain; and I dare say, if the Company would have given him twenty pound, he would not have forborn the execution of it; but thus proceeded: He called for the largest Dish of Coffee in the house; it being filled, he set it in the middle of the Coffee -room, and letting down his Breeches, he turned up his shirt, and placed his Bum just over the Coffee-dish. All the Company wondring and laughing at this extravagancie; he cried out, Nay, Gentlemen, you need not laugh so hard, for I do no otherwise than you have directed me; for you all say, Coffee is good for a Cold, and to your knowledg my Podex hath gotten a cold, for it coughed since I came in hither; and therefore do but as I was directed, to let the fumes of the Coffee ascend to the place affected. Having now had his frollick, he put up his Breeches, and sitting down among the Company, gave them all occasion to exercise their eyes in staring on him; and he again entertained them with such fantastical Discourse, as made them believe that he was more Knave than Fool, and enough of both.

You may judge by this (said Mrs. Mary) of the rest of his Extravagancies; and this was the dayly exercise of his wit, which (as you may understand) was not barren in inventing all manner of debaucheries; and indeed, had he had somewhat to exercise his wit on that was ingenious, or good, he must have been successful enough, for he had a strong memory; for he retained all he read, he never forgot the least, or sleightest story that he had once read over: he read but little, and that was of the pleasantest sort of reading, books of Knight-Errantry; and of them he knew all, and could relate all the stories, from Tom Thumb to Amadis de Gaule, and the Mirrour of Knighthood. All the Palmerins, and Primaleons , he knew as well as if he had gone to school with them; he knew the Father, Son, and Grand-father; and frequented Booksellers shops only to inquire for more parts of those Histories. Don Bellianis of Greece was a brave Knight with him; and he was wont to say, that it was great pity that some Ingenious Pen did not prosecute the Adventures of that Honour of Chivalry in a second part: he was intended to have done it himself, if he could but have spared so much time. From this History he proceeded to Cassandra and Cleopatra; but those Hero's and Ladies were of too strict and virtuous an inclination for his converse: the loose Galaor, Brother to Sr. Amadis, was a man for his money, being one who was a general lover of all Ladies. He had also read over Orlando Furioso in verse; and was very much in love with mine Hosts Tale to Rodomant, of the loosness of Women; this he commended above any thing in the book; and in all his readings he imitated the Spider, and not the Bee, in sucking the Poison, not the Honey from them. By means of this converse with Poetical books, he was so much infected with Poetry, that he could versifie and ryme indifferently; and being in love with Canary, he bestowed some time in composing these Verses on that Divine Liquor.


An Encomium on Canary.

Thou glory of this glorius Nation,
Spains best Child, her Pride, her Reputation;
Her India, her Peru, her best Wealth;
Thou art Fortune, Pleasure, Riches, Health,
Companion to the Worthies, giving birth;
To Hector Valour, and to Cæsar Mirth:
Nay, and sometimes sole Commander
Of the Worlds All-commanding Alexander. Ye Muses guide unto the pleasant Spring,
Where you inchanting sit, and chanting sing
Such Roundelays, that those which do draw near,
Are no more fed by th'eye, but by the ear.
There is no Musick, nought that cheers the heart,
If Don Canary does not bear his part. Gazing Astronomers had never found
How the great Axle of the World wheels round
Had they not tasted Sack: 'tis Sack's the eye
Of solid Logick, and Philosophy.
Nay, be you ne're so strongly grounded,
If you contend with Sack, you'l be confounded. Your learn'd Physitians, famous for their skill,
Give Drugs to others whom they mean to kill;
But mark them who so please, in hugger-mugger,
They cure themselves meerly with Sack and Sugar.
Should we to former ages but look back,
There you should find the strange effects of Sack. Shall I ascend to Jove, the Heavens Protector?
What is that drink call'd by the Poets, Nectar?
Was't not Canary? yes, there's nothing truer,
For all men know, that Bacchus was his Brewer:
Who by Canary, as 'tis poetis'd,
Became a God, and was Immortalliz'd.

CHAP. XXII.

 

Our Extravagant uses strange ways to raise moneys; which being got in, he takes a journey into the Countrey, marries, and returns; meets with one of his Companions, who laid a wager about their footmens drinking: he being indebted to our Extravagant, and not in capacity to pay him till his Fathers death; he projects a way to kill the Father, and not come within the compass of the Law; he undertakes and performs it. This Extravagants answer to his Mother; and his getting a suit of clothes of a strange Taylor. He cheats at the water-side, and cheats Gentlemen of several clokes, which he sells to a Broker, who upon some discontent claps him in prison, where he again expresses his poetry.

Our Gallant thus exercised his wit, and spent his time; and as this Old man, the Father, had in his latter years employed his whole wit and industry in gaining of moneys, and enlarging his estate; so the Young man, the Son, employed all his in spending, and lessening it. The Fathers ways of getting money was by usury; and the Son, on the contrary, was so great a hater of that vice, and sin of usury, as he termed it, that he would not receive any; and being desirous to raise a great sum of money together, he sent to hid Debtors, and told them, that if they would by a certain time, then to come, bring him in his principal money, he would forgive them all interest. There were few of them that stood out; for the Father having been vwary in disposing his money on good security, the Son had the less trouble to gather it in; and few of the Debtors failed to bring in our Prodigals money, and take up their bonds. Some there were whose debts were considerable and large, and they could not provide their moneys by the time, but lost that advantage: but again some of them gained more considerably then the rest had done; for he by this means believing that all those debts that were not paid him were desperate and bad, he fell to selling and assigning them; which the Debtors hearing of, although they could not raise the ready money themselves, yet the Security being good, they procured Friends to lay down the moneys, and compounded the debts for some two thirds, some three quarters, some more, some less, he being willing to take, and unwilling to refuse all moneys that he could tuus bring in. And by this means being master of a considerable sum of money, and being weary of his London frollicks, he resolved for the Countrey; and providing himself with choice of Geldings, and variety of Rich Clothes for himself, and new Liveries for his two Servants, he took his journey. I cannot give you any particular account of his transactions in the Countrey, because it was at too great a distance; but in general, I heard he plaid over his old freaks, the second part to the same tune: but this I know, that passing for a man of a great estate, and being plentifully furnished with moneys, he was admitted into the Family of Persons of Quality; where, however he carried himself abroad, yet at home he was so civil, as that courting the Daughter, he obtained hers and her Friends consent to a marriage. They questioned not his estate, (which they knew had been considerable) because he demanded no portion: and thus was our wild Gallant become a staid Man, if marriage would make him so; but although it might operate somewhat at first, yet that good humour held him not long, for he was soon weary of any thing that was good; and, as I heard, his Wife being so, he was the sooner weary of her: and therefore, and because the money he had brought with him was spent and gone, he was then again for London. I suppose he ingaged himself to return speedily; but he who never kept any ingagement, was sure to break that: And now, being come to London , he visited all his old Friends; but there was not one word of the pudding; he would not own the alteration of his condition, but had a mind still to pass for a Batchelor; for under that notion he might practise his debaucheries the more freely; for he did intend to cheat any maid, that would be so easie, of the most precious Jewel they had; whether he did, and how many fell into his snare, I know not; but he boasted of many such conquests. He being now come to London, and his errand money, money he would have; and therefore he summoned all his remaining Debtors to make sudden payment.

Although he had already received several considerable sums, and that more than he had present occasion to make use of; yet not one good turn, or courtesie would he do any man, though never so near and dear to him: he had rather spend 40s. to make a man drunk, than lend him 20s. But there was one, a certain Companion of his, who was almost as debauched as himself, and would have been altogether so, had he had the means to have done it. This person having a Father alive, whom he would willingly have exchanged for a dead one; and whom he was very desirous to have kneel in Brasse, or lean in Marble: This Father was a great trouble to our young mans proceedings, and our Gallant having considered his case, as it had been formerly his own, being desirous to propagate, and assist in the work of deformation, had a several times furnished him with the sum of fifty pounds; and now he being resolved to have at all, get in all he could, he gave this Friend a summons, who failed not to meet him at the time, and place appointed; and he came well enough provided, and appointed with money for a drinking bout, though not to pay money. They set to it lustily, and drank of their Sack very stoutly; and whilst our two young Gentlemen were thus employed, their Servants were not idle. Our Gallant was now attended but by one of his two Foot-men; and the other, who had also a Foot-man, or Attendant, who was acquainted with the other; and they having been for some time separated, by reason of our Gallants Journey, and now being met again, were so joyfull to see themselves alive, that they drank off their Sack as fast as their Masters. They had leave to do so, and might call for what they pleased. Our Gallant having occasion to go into the next Room, there found his Man, and the other engaged in hot service; but observed, that his Man being the stouter drinker of the two, had the better on it, and was likely so to hold it; wherefore a conceit came into his head, and then out it must; thereupon, he call'd his Companion to him, and shewed him their Servants; he was as well pleased as the other, and encouraged his man to hold out; our Gallant hearing him say so, cryed, Bear up, Jack, for I'le hold a piece of your head ; done, said the other. But although here was a wager to be lay'd, yet there was no sound bargain, nor Witness; and they hardly understood what they intended, till the Master of the House was called up; and then he seeing there was like to be somewhat to his advantage, made this fair proposition (as he called it) that the two fellows should drink on, and he who first gave out, and was foyled, his Master should pay the Reckoning. Content, said one; content, said another; and withall, lose a piece, to be spent to Morrow: They both agreed to this motion; and drawing out their moneyes, the Land-Lord kept stakes, and the Fellows still held on their drinking, neither wre the Masters idle; and they all plyed their gears so well, that they could not remove their Quarters, but were all four inforced to stay there all night; only our Gallant had the honour of the day, for his man had quite knock'd down the other, and laid him fast asleep; and he being on the ground stradled over him, like St. George over the Dragon, and drank off three Beer-glasses of Sack in token of triumph; and then they were all carried to their beds. The next morning they found themselves more sensible then they had been the night before; but being in a Tavern, and remembring that there was 20. s. in bank, there was no remedy, but that they must of necessity take a hair of the old dog; and therefore to it they went again, but with more sobriety then the day before; for our Gallant, who commanded in chief, had no mind to drinking, it being against his custom to drink in a morning; and besides that, he intended to propose the matter of money to his Companion, so that they drank but moderately; and our Gallant broke the ice, by telling his Companion, that upon a certain accident that had lately fallen out, he had occasion to raise a sum of money, and therefore he desired the other to help him to that which he had formerly lent him. The other briskly replied with an oath, that he asked him impossibilities; and that there was not such a sum as 50. l. in Nature, nor could he expect to see so much together, till the happy day of his Fathers death; and then, said he, if that long looked for day would but come, I will not only pay that sum, but all else I have shall be at your dispose.

Our Prodigal knew well enough that he should hardly get his money till the old fellow was dead, but however he thought to urge it to see if he could perswade him to cheat his Father of such a some, but the other replying he could not and that it was impossible to out-wit him, well reply'd our Gallant since that Jest will not take let us think of somewhat else, is the old fellow good conditioned? does he give you money enough to spend? truly reply'd the other he is very kind to me, for he allows me pritty largely, knowing that besides Wine & good company; there are such transitory things as women to be had, for keeping a good Girl himself who is an old knave, he knows the necessity of those mortals for us that are young. How reply'd our blade does he keep a wench? then I have a sure expedient to make him tip off the perch in a short time. You may be deceiv'd reply'd the other, for as he is old so he is tough and hath been a long time accustomed to Venus Wars. Well that matters not reply'd our Gallant but if you will double my money (for I must be at some charge). I will undertake and warrant to send your Father into the other world in a very short time. No reply'd the other I will have no hand in murther especially, their being Parricide in the Case. I tell thee reply'd our undertaker there shall be no hazard of the Law, no nor so much guilt lye upon you nor us, whether as Physitians (who are authorized authorized to kill) are guilty of to their Patients, and shall be both safe and sure. Well how is it then reply'd our Companion. You say said our Gallant your Father is old, very old; and loves a Wench. VVhy then said our undertaker, all my business is but to know this Wench and be acquainted with her, and then the business is done, and that without fail. Thus much he told his Companion but would not (though he importuned him) tell him any thing more: And thereupon he seeing that he could not at present get any thing more out of him and withal assuring him that there was no danger in Law; the one concludes to act, and the other to assist in the enterprize. Accordingly that very afternoon our Extravagant was conducted by his Companion to the place where his Fathers Lady of Pleasure resided. This young VVoman whom he was desirous to be acquainted withall lived with one that was more antient and whom she called Aunt, and they two together with a Maid-servant that attended them both made up this little Family in regard she lived thus privately, he found it would be more difficult then ordinary to get access, but the next day an opportunity fell out very convenient. For the old Man (according to his custom) having sent in Provision for Dinner came at noon to Dine with his Mistriss, and about three of the Clock he and his Mistriss and the old VVoman resolved on a walk. Our undertaker was so dilligent that he attended them at some distance, and they going into a Publique house he also went thither and took a room next to their's. The old Man treated his Mistriss with Cakes and Ale and such other provision as the place afforded, and after they had sufficiently regalled themselves. The old Man he must go about an affair of importance, and therefore he must leave them. Our undertaker was glad to hear of that and expected the happy minute of his departure, but he found that they all left the house together, wherefore he put himself in the way that they were to come, and walking softly permitted the two VVomen to overtake him. He being a sufficient Courtier wanted not pretence sufficient to enter himself into their company, and the VVomen were not so reserved as to distaste or dislike the proffered service of a person of his meen and quality. The walk they were to take er'e they came to their quarters was considerable and thereby he had the opportunity to discourse with the young beauty, which was not only handsom but of a pleasant conversation. He knowing how far their journey reached offered them a Glass of VVine. The young woman wholly declined the proposition, wherefore he applyed himself to the Old one; and her he over ruled, so that they put in at the next Tavern, He promised them only one quart of VVine, but they drank three or four er'e they parted, he did so Court the old VVoman that she took off her liquor freely, and made her so open hearted that he discovered many of her copius secrets with the Old Man who also simpered at the writal of them, our Gallants cheif business being to win the young woman, thought that the nearest way to do it was to gain the Old, and therefore he not only plyed her with Wine but gave her some half-crown pieces at the sight of this she called him Son and told him he should be welcome.

He pulling out his money discovered some fair Medals which shewing to the young woman, and she seeming to like, he forced her to accept of them, thus he having laid the bait did not question but the Fish would in time be taken, he only waited on them to their lodgings that night, but promising to revisit them the next day, neither was he worse then his word, but before hand he sent several bottles of Wine.

And at this second converse he made so large a progress in his business, that he discovered that she was not displeased with his Company; He finding her thus easie, proceeded as far as he could with her to the main point, but she checked him there, being resolved not to be won so easily; But he resolving not to make Childrens Shoes, followed her so close that he brought her to his bent, and received the satisfaction he desired, She not distrusting the mischief that was intended her, gave him all freedom with her, and he was seldome out of her Company but when the Old Man had appointed to be with her, our undertaker still resolving on his project, ventured on one of the desperatest courses that has been heard of.

It is not to be questioned but that he who had been so Universal a Courter of Women, and that of all sorts, had met with those one time or another that had paid him off, and he was used to brag himself to be more then a Gentleman, for he had been oftner then three times at Haddum, he was so well acquainted with all the effects of that Disease, and the remedies against it that he made nothing of it, and he knew several of his quondam Ladies who were then well peppered, to one of these he went and it was not very difficult for him to purchase that of them which they would very gladly be rid off, and therefore he easily attained his desires, and being thus accompanied he went to his fresh Mistress, and made her participate in that disease which she had till then been a stranger to, and the Old Man coming soon after in his turn and thinking to have his pleasure with her, had it for the present, but was so paid off that entring into a course of Physick to cure himself of his disease, he was brought so weak that he fell into another though less troublesome yet more dangerous, which was not long in operating its desired effects, for it carried him to his Grave. And thus did our undertaker perform his undertaking, and his Companion was so much a Gentleman as to perform his promise to give the sum of Mony for his reward that had been agreed upon, and our undertaker who had only made use of this young Woman as an Instrument to bring his purpose to effect, caused the young man to give her a reward for what she had unknowingly endured and done.

His Companion was now the better man as having the more Money, but our Gallants stock held out to spend with him, and neither of them made any spare. Our Gallants Mother hearing of his lewd courses, took some of her old Husbands acquaintance and found him out, she and they perswaded him to take up before all were spent, using many arguments to induce him to good husbandry, and propounding some course for him to take to redeem himself; but he was deaf to all perswasions, and only flouted and laughed at them, telling them that he was resolved to make his dead Father a Lyar, for I remember (said he) that some friends telling him in his life time that I would spend his Estate after his death, he answered that so I might if I would, but he was certain that I would never take so much pleasure in spending it, as he had in getting it. And therefore said he I am resolved to enjoy my full swing, in all manner of pleasures that I may disprove him, and besides (continued he) do you think I am mad to preserve or keep any part of that Estate that was so unlawfully gained by penury and Usury; no such matter for I am sure it would be to no purpose to attempt it, for I know I shall never thrive while I enjoy any part of it. His Mother and Friends hearing his resolution, by this his extravagant answer, left him; and he prosecuted his old course of life so long that he began really to want Money, and had still spent his Money before he could receive it, some debts he had still oweing him, which supplyed him sometimes by fits and girds. He had dealt with a Taylor who had taken much money of him and gained well by him, but he still paid him one under another, and was still in his debt for the last, this Taylor seeing his Extravagancy, and doubting that in the winding up of the bottom he might loose as much as he had gained, waited on him very diligently for his Money, and pretended such urgent occasions for Money that he in the end got clear with him. Our Gallant then desired some more new cloaths but he gave him only good words and put him off from time to time, till one day our Gentleman meeting this Taylor in Company asked him why he was not so good as his word to make him a new suit, for said he you know I have been no ill Customer, I owe you nothing, it is confessed (replyed the Taylor) you do owe me nothing but Sir there is a reason and that a very considerable one; why, I do not care to deal with you nor no others of your temper, what reason reply'd our Gallant, this (reply'd the Taylor) you do pay me, but you call for my bill, and pay me so suddenly after I have delivered the Cloaths that I have not conveniency to gain so much by you as I do by other Gentlemen, who staying a great while after their cloaths are made, and indeed till they are worn out e're they ask for a bill, or talk of payment. I have the conveniency to enlarge what and how I please, because it is forgot what was used, and they being worn out they have not the conveniency of comparing the bill and cloaths together, this continued the Taylor is a sufficient reason why I do not care for dealing with you further, and thus did this Taylor make his excuses which reflecting rather on his own ill dealing then our Gallants, it passed very well with the Company, and our Gallant understanding that his credit was justified could not be angry, but however he knew the Taylor meant quite contrary to what he had said, and he finding his credit would go no further there, and some of his Companions hearing this discourse with him and his Taylor, thought that the Taylor had been mad, and engaged our Gentleman to make use of his, and his Taylor upon the report of this, soon provided him with such cloaths as he desired, but he did not find the discourse made good for he was forced to wait a long time after for his Money, and now he had spun a fair thread his money was almost all gone, and being monyless he was inforced to look out some melancholly place to spin away the time in upon this account he was a great frequenter of the Temple walks, which were pleasant, melancholly, and withal safe, for there he was out of danger of being arrested, which he began now to dread, and this walk, turned him to a more profitable account as I shall presently relate to you; one day he being very melancholly in his ordinary walk at the Temple, sees one who had lodgings in that house who was of his acquaintance they salute each other and so walk about for some time, at length the Gentleman tells our Extravagant, that he must beg his pardon, for he could no longer walk with him being ingaged to cross the Water about an affair of Consequence, it then happened to rain, and therefore our Extravagant told him sure Sir you will not go before the Shower is over; that matters not much replyed the Gentleman, for I will send for my Cloak, and thereupon called for a Porter and directed him to his Chamber, to command his servant to send his Cloak, the Porter went and fetched it accordingly, and so the Gentleman putting it on departed. Our Extravagant observing this accordingly, and now being in Querpo without a Cloak, thought he had a fair expedient to get one and if he were discovered it would pass for a Frolick, whereupon he calls a Porter and sends him to a chamber whose Master was of his acquaintance, and whom he saw was newly gone out, aad ordring the Porter to fetch his Cloak from thence, naming himself the Master of the Chamber, the Porter went, and the Servant who attended in the Chamber knowing that his Master was but newly gone out, and believing he might have occasion for his Cloak, delivered it to the Porter who carried it to our Extravagant, who now having a Cloak marched off, being provided for against a shower of Rain, that then happened, but withal he knowing it would be dangerous to wear that Cloak which was remarkably known among his acquaintance, having Gold Buttons, he marched to Long-Lane, and exchanged it for a Coat of a different colour, and had money to boot, and now having succeeded so well in this first attempt and being resolved to try further, he thought fit to acquaint this Broker that he had several Cloaks that he would exchange or sell to him. The Broker replyed he should be very welcome and he would deal very honestly with him, and so he left him, and the next day he plyed his business so that he in the manner aforementioned, takeing his due observations, gained three Cloaks more, and before the week was at an end he had ten or twelve, being master of so many Cloaks he dealt with his Broker, and exchanged for a very handsome suit and Cloak, and a pretty sum of money in his Pocket, and now he was set up again.

He again marches to the Gameing-House, and there in short time looses all his ill purchased Wealth, and now the loss of so many Cloaks together having been so much talked of by the Owners he thought it would be to no purpose to attempt that trick any further but knowing he had a Merchant his Broker, who would deal with him for any thing of Cloaths, he went to the Play-house, and there he nim'd off the Gold Buttons from Cloaks, and the Gold and Silver Lace from Gentlewomens Pettycoats, nay sometimes he would cut off great part of the Petticoats, and this trade he did drive a long time, and as fast as he was Master of any such purchase he sold it to the Broker who received all that came, and although he knew our Extravagant could not come honestly by these purchases yet he still encouraged him to bring him more.

And was so kind to him that being arrested by his Landlord for five pound for Lodging and Diet he furnished him with the some, and set him at liberty, he promising to repay him in a short time, by such things as he should bring in. But he being at liberty and following his old trade, and finding that although he brought much grist to the Mill, still carried some of his Comodities to the Broker, yet he had but little money of him, for in the first place he gave him less price, and then withall stop'd most part of the money for the old debt, he considering of this was resolved to leave the Broker and make the best of his markets else where, and so he did; but the Broker soon discovered him, and in revenge caused him to be arested and clapt up into the Counter, from whence he had lately redeemed him. Our Extravagant being close enough sent to his Mother, but she was as deaf to him as he had been to her, and was resolved to let him bite on the bridle, wherefore he being weary of that Prison, and understanding that Ludgate was far better, resolved to remove himself thither but first he again tryed what his Mother would do, but she although the debt was but four pound would not pay it, but if he could get off for forty shillings, she gave him some hopes that she would disburse it, but the Broker was inexecrable would have all or none which he understanding, in a humor writ these Lines.



Oh how with misery, I my Mothers Darling
To be thus chackled but for four pound Starling,
By a base Broker who I know's a thief
And merits Newgate, and I want relief,
And now i'm forc'd to go Guds Dud
To the dwelling of that old King Lud,
If e're I pay him I am soundly cheated;
If I ne're pay him then he is defeated,
But if he will take half the debt for whole,
My Mother then i'm sure will pay the Cole.

CHAP. XXIII.

 

Our Extravagants wild humors whilst he is in the Compter, from whence he being released falls into the Company of House-Breakers, and by their assistance robs a Milliners Shop where the Constable kept his Watch.

Thus did necessity cause our Extravagant to be witty, and he shewing these Verses to some friends they promised to assist him with his Mother, but she rather chose to maintain him in Prison then pay the debt, all the small moveables, as Cloak, sword and belt, half-shirts, bands Carevats, and all other things that he could spare, he parted from and converted them into Ale. Some friends one Fast day went to see him, and he being glad of Company caused them to stay most part of the day but it being a Fast-day, the Parson belonging to the Compter, according to custom gave the Prisoners a Sermon, and during that time the Cellar door was shut up, no drink was delivered out, all were ingaged to assist and hear the Parson, our Extravagant was very much troubled at this obstruction in his drinking, and his friends could not perswade him to any patience, but he when the Parson was in the middle of his Sermon, looking out at a Window near the Pulpit, heard him say I have two or three points more and then I conclude, I would you would said our Extravagant that we might have some drink. The Parson stared at him, and so did the people who were near him and heard his words, but he seeing the Parson went on, turned away, saying come since we can have no drink, lets take Tobacco till we can, and so went away. The Parson after he had done preaching, came to our Extravagant to examine him privately, but his answers were so Extravagant that there was no good to be done with him, and now not having any employment he gave himself wholly to fudling, and when he had not money, and his Mothers allowance was spent, he would spunge with all Companies, and get acquainted with all the Prisoners that came into the house, and this his Imprisonment did make him worse, for he conversed with all the debauched persons that were there, and now he could not act, he gloried in the Relation of his former lewd debaucheries, so that at length his Mother at the perswasion of friends agreed and paid his Debt and Charges, and took him home to her house. By reason of his confinement, he had contracted a disease wherefore it was necessary for him to stay within doors for some time, and take Physick, but he being restored to his former health, was a suitor to his Mother for new Cloaths and money in his Pocket, she refused him both for the present, not thinking it fit as yet to trust him wherefore he gave her very ill words.

Thus you may see what a hopeful amendment here was, and as he was debauched himself, so I believe it was his desire that his Son should be so; for as I told you he had been married in the Country to a person of quality, but he had basely left her and rambled about the town, and although he heard soon after his coming to London that she was brought to bed of a boy, he took no heed nor care about it, but when he was asked by any friends whether he had not a desire to see his young Son he replyed no he cared not to see him till he was about thirteen or fourteen years of age, and then he only desired that he might see him to enter him at a Baudy-house.

By this discourse you may judge of his inclination, and his Mother now refusing him money, he would purloyn a silver Spoon or some other piece of plate, and convert it into Pocket mettle, and being once furnished with money he would go seek out company. Those that had any grace or honesty would refuse to accompany him, and therefore he got into the company of such Bulkers and Pick-pockets as he had known whilst he was in the Counter, and how he employed his industry in contriving ways with them to get a purchase & being one day at a Milliners or Haberdashers shop who was related to him, he asked the Master to lend him half a piece he refused him the money, but gave him very good counsell if he had had the grace to receive it and make use of it as he ought. But it was to as little purpose to speak to him at that rate, as it had been to endeavour to wash the Black-amore white, both labour in vain, and our Extravagant was so angery at his friend for it; that he told him that he might have found somwhat else to do, and since he had not, he would e're long find him some other imployment, somwhat else to talke about and so left him; and now being resolved what to do, he went and found out some of his forementioned accquaintance, Bulkers or House-breakers, and telling them he had a great desire to assist them in robbing of the Milliners Shop, which he told them was very well furnished with good ready mony, Commodities, Silk and Silk-ribboning, Gloves and such like wares, they liked the design well-enough, and now they asked him the place where, but here appeared a very great obstacle; for this Milliners shop was in such a place as was very difficult to be rob'd, it being the very next door to the Watch-house, where the Constable and watch generally sat. This they told him would be dangerous to attempt, but he affirming the more danger the more honor, and that he was resolved it should be done, and he knew how to do it handsomly if they would be ruled by him; they promised their assistance to the execution of this design. It was necessary there should be five or six persons wherefore they making up that company and he being one of that number and all things provided according to his order and directions, about ten of the Clock at night they set forwards. They divided themselves into two parts or companies and our Extravagant and two others went into an Ale-house at some small distance from the Watch-house. There they called for drink, and soon began their work, which was to quarrel with one another, they were armed with Swords which they drew and began a scufle, one of the three runs up to the VVatch, and cries out Murther, Murther; The Constable hearing the noise; and doubting there might be sufficient cause, took all his Watch-men to attend Him, but he found no great trouble to appease this quarrel, which being ended, he with his VVatch returned to his Rendezvous: In this time the other three had not been idle, but so soon as ever the Constables back was turned, they broke open the Shop Door they intended to rob, and it was not very difficult so to do, for it was not so strongly barricado'd, as otherwise it might have been, because of the safety the Owner thought he was in, by reason of the Constables sitting there. The Shop being opened they laid about them, and knowing where the best Commodities lay, they soon removed them, and not packing them up so handsomly as the Owner would have done for his Customer, they only threw them together into two Sacks they had brought, which being filled, away they marched; so that by such time as the Constable and VVatch returned, they had dispatched their business and were gone. The Constable before morning discovered the Shop Door to be open, but did suppose it had been left so, by the negligence of them that shut it up, wherefore he left two VVatch-men at the Door to guard it. The next Morning the Master came and wondering to see a Guard upon his Door, asked the reason, They told him what they supposed, but he found it much otherwise, and although there were his Drawers and Boxes, yet they were empty there were the Nests but the Birds were flown, immediately a Hue and Cry went out against those parties they could describe, but to little purpose, for they escaped, and were far enough off from being discovered. The next day they shared their prize, and converting it into Mony, our Extravagant's share came to above 25 l. and now that he was possessed of so considerable a Sum of Mony, he was desirous that all the world should know it, and therefore it being inconvenient to carry so much about him in Silver, he changed 20 l. into Gold.

CHAP. XXIV.

 

Our Extravagant puts a notable cheat upon a Merchant for 100 l. He and one of his Companions being at a Washerwomans, see Her handsomely revenged of a Bayliff.

Our Extravagant being Master of this Mony, and knowing the difficulty of getting more, was resolved to look out betimes. He was drinking with some friends at a Tavern neer the Exchange, London , and it being the busie time of the day, Exchange time, several companies were put into one Room though at several Tables: He was not so busie in attending the discourse of his own Company, but that he gave great attention to what was said by that Company who sat at the next Table. He soon understood that their discourse was about Mony, and that one of the Company expected Two Hundred Pounds to be paid him by and by. He hearing that there was business of that consequence, began to contrive within himself, how he might be Master of some of it; many contrivances he had, and many fancies ran in his brain, but none would do, none would take at present, however he and his Company stil drank on, and that so long, that the promised 200 l. was brought thither, and paid to the Person, who was there ready to receive it. The Mony being paid, he who was now Master of it, delivers it to a servant that attended him, and ordered him to carry it home, and deliver it to his Mistriss, he further observed that this Mony was intended to be suddenly paid away again, for part of a Ship, which he then agreed with one of the Company to buy of him; and also he observed that the next day all the Company were to meet there again to participate of a Collation that the Person who had received the Mony was to bestow on the rest. All these passages, and several others, as their names, and the qualities of most of the Persons there present, he gained from the discourse he had heard. He being thus instructed, was resolved to try his wits to the utmost, and if possible be Master of some of this Mony, and that without the help, advice or assistance of any other. He beat his brains about it all that night, and the next day making himself as spruce and fine as he could and being laden with the rich Cargoe of Twenty Pieces of Gold, and sufficient spending Mony besides, he sailed on to the Exchange, and there knowing several of the Yesterdays Company both by sight and name, he soon found out the Person who was to sell the part of the Ship, and understanding that he was a Sea-Captain, who wanted Owners, he bore up to him, and tels him that he was willing to hold a part with him, whereupon the Captain invites him to their intended Dinner, and he accepting the invitation, and being come thither upon a farther discourse, he seemed pretty well content with the bargain, and told the Captain that at the next Days Exchange he would resolve him about it. Their discourse being ended, Dinner was called for, but it not being yet ready, he who was the invitor seemed to be very angry for the delay, for said he, I commanded it to be ready between One and Two, and now by my Watch it is between Two and Three, our Merchant seeing a Watch drawn, said, I pray Sir let me see it, and having it in his hand, highly commended it for its richness and good workmanship, for it had two Gold Cases, and desired to know the Price what it did cost, the Owner replyed Twenty Pound , I like it so well, replyed our Merchant, that I wish I had such another for the Price, and (continued he to the Owner) I shal be much obliged to you, if you will lend it me for One Hour or Two, to shew it to my VVatchmaker, who is now in hand with One for me; and, Sir, that you may assure your self of the return of it to you, here is Twenty Pieces of good old Gold, I will leave in your hands: VVhen would you have it, replyed the Owner, even just now, said our Merchant, for I must needs step home instantly, and I can call on my VVatchmaker by the way, and when I return to you hither, which I promise you shal be within Two Hours I will bring it and return it you. I, but Sir, said the Captain, I hope you will not leave us, but stay and Dine here, indeed I cannot, said our Merchant, you must pardon me at present, an urgent affair calls me, but in Two Hours I shall have dispatched it, and then I will return and drink a Glass of VVine with you. The Owner of the Watch seeing that he made these excuses & not distrusting his Watch , as he had little reason to do, because he had more than the worth in his hands, delivered the Watch to our Counterfeit, who takes his leave, and Calling a Coach, caused the Coachman to drive directly to the House of the Owner of the Watch; when he came there, he asked for the good Wooman, and without any circumstantial discourse, tels her that he left her Husband in such a Tavern, with such Company, and that he had gone through with his bargain about the Sixteenth part of such a Ship; that the Sum agreed greed upon was 100 l. that the Captain who was to receive it, had ordered it to him, who was now come for it; and Mistriss (said he) I should give you such sufficient tokens for the delivery of it, as I hope you will do it without any distrust. Therefore in the first place, said he, the 100 l. I must have, is part of 200 l. your husband did receive yesterday, and sent home to you by your Servant, and to convince you of the truth of all, as an infallible token, I have here brought your Husband's Watch, and thereupon he drew it out, and shewed it to her. She knowing that all he had said was true, and viewing the Watch, and knowing that to be the same, and finding that he told his tale without any hesitation, stopping or stammering, did not at all distrust him, but went up Stairs and fetcht down the Mony. He ordered the Coachman to drive him to his Quarters, and there he secured the Mony, and thanked his Stars for thus favourably assisting him in this affair, where he had come off without so much as a Rub, and that better than he expected, for he did suppose that to purchase this 100 l. it would have cost him the Twenty Pieces of Gold, for he expected that the good Woman would have desired him to leave the Watch behind with her, as her warrant for delivery of the Mony which if she had, he could not have refused it, and now he had Mony and Watch too, wherefore having had so good success, he was resolved to try his good fortune a little further, and therfore away he went to the Tavern, where he had left the Captain and Owner of the Watch. They had hardly Dined, so that he had part of a good Dinner, was welcomed by all the Company, who in his absence had enquired of one another, who this unknown Merchant was, and seeing him so full of Gold, they doubted not his ability, but were resolved to treat him handsomly, which they did, and the Dinner being ended, he re-delivered the Watch, and received back his Gold, with a Complement from the Owner, that he begg'd his pardon for taking any thing as an engagement, and desiring his further acquaintance, but Dinner being ended, and a good quantity of Wine brush'd off, they promising to meet the next day at the Exchange, departed, I suppose they all did meet, especially the Owner of the Watch, to enquire of the Captain for his Merchant, and also the Captain, to conclude his begun bargain with our Counterfeit Merchant, but he, although he had made them a fair promise to meet, yet he came not there, he had other Eggs on the Spit, his affairs lay now at the other end of the Town, and although he had made as profitable a bargain the last Exchangetime, as most Merchants that came thither, yet he had no mind to return thither in hast. But with all the hast he could, he removed his Money and Quarters to the other end of the Town, and that he might pass the more securely undiscovered, he left off his civil Merchant-like habit, wherein he had performed his exploit, and put on Cloaths more modish and gallant, with a Sword and Belt, and large Perriwig, in this disguise he passed without any discovery, by those who sought out for him, but one of his Extravagant acquaintance meeting him, although thus accoutred, soon knew him, and believing that some extraordinary adventure had fallen out, was very desirous to be acquainted with it, wherfore that they might compare notes together, they put in to the next Tavern, our Extravagant's Companion saw by this disguisement, that there was somewhat in the wind, somewhat extraordinary had befallen him, and withall that he was shy in declaring it, wherefore to th'end that he might induce him, to tell him how squares went with him, he told him that he had had very good luck since they parted last; for, said he, I met w th a brave Prize within these two days, which I carried off with very little hazard or danger, and this it was, I was sauntring about the streets, to see and observe where I might get a Purchase, and at length I observed a Coach was called for, it was neer Allgate, and it was just about the dusk of the Evening, I having nothing else to do, reso ved to see what Company was to go in the Coach and therefore waited not long, but saw it was only a Woman and a Child, and withall there was two Bundles of Linnen. I seeing there was no more Company, was resolved to be Master of one of those bundles, neither did I question to do it with ease enough, I observed which way the Coach drove, and went along with it. There was so many Passengers with Lanthorns, Links and Torches walking backwards and forwards, that I was forced to Lackquy this Woman, til the Coach had brought her to the Stocks in the Poultry, there observing it to be a narrow dark place, and no lights neer me and having my purchase in my eye, I soon had it in my hand and slapt it under my Coat. The Woman saw me seize it, and therefore cryed out immediatly, but the Coachman not presently hearing of her, and he driving on towards Cheapside , I thought it would be necessary for me to march off another way, and so I did, returning back again, but not the very same way we had come, for we had come up Cornhill, and I now returned back by Lombarstreet, I did hear the VVoman cry out, Hold Coachman, I am rob'd! but I suppose he driving one way, and I running another, I was got to Gracious-street, and he to Cheapside before he stopt, and so then it was to no purpose to look after me, for I soon crossed London Bridg, and went to my old Quarters in Southwark, when I came there I undid my fardle, but it was filled with such a parcel, as I understood very little, I think there was 100 several pieces of fowl Linnen, which upon examination, I found to be Child-bed Linnen, and withall there was Blankets and Mantles, but above all there was the Unum necessarium, a parcel of good ready money, Ten Pieces of good old Gold, and Five Pounds in Silver, the sight of this pleased my eyes, and I thanked my stars for my good fortune. Although (continued he) I knew not so well what to do with the Linnen, as I did with the money, yet I knew it was too good to be thrown away, and that it would yield good ready money, but in the pickle it was in, I thought it was not convenient to offer it to sell, wherefore I resolved to have it washed, and in order thereto, said he, I am now going to an old acquaintance, a VVoman who gets the best part of her living by washing and startching, and I intend to intrust her not only to wash and starch, but also to sell this Commodity for me. And (this concluded he) is my business at present, and now I have told you mine, I pray acquaint me with yours. Our Extravagant understanding from his acquaintance, that he had lately gained a Prize, and by that concluding that he was not in want of money, so that he was not obliged to impart any of his Prize to him, which is a customary thing beween Persons of that quality, he therefore without much perswasions acquainted him with his late good fortune in the adventure of the 100 l. This discourse us'd, the business of drinking being over, our Extravagant's Companion desired him to go with him a little way to the old Laundresses, he spake off, that he might deliver his Pack of small things to her ordering, and dispose, he was not hard to be entreated, wherefore away they went together. But, when they came there, they found the old VVoman all in tears, for she being indebted a Sum of Mony, that she was not able to pay, and an Attachment having been brought against her Goods, she not having Mony or skill to manage and defend the Suit, her adversary had obtained Judgment against her, and thereupon the Execution was deliver'd into the Bayliffs hands, who at this very minute that our Extravagants came, was come also to seize the Goods, and this was the occasion of the old VVomans Lamentation. She gave the Bayliff all the good words she could, and they not prevailing, she fell to railing and scolding, but it was all as one to him, he minded her not, but proceeded in executing his Office, and delivered out to his Man all the poor VVomans goods, one piece after an other, and there was nothing now remaining, but a little which stood on a Trevet over the Fire, and the Utensels of the Chimney. He told her he must have the Kettle, but she might take out the Cloaths, she saying they were none of hers, but she refusing to empty the Kettle, he took it off from the Fire, and threw the water and cloaths that was in it about the house: The old VVoman seeing this, and being resolved to be revenged on him, took the Tongs in her hands, and with them took up the Trevet, which was red hot, and lifting it up, clapt it about the Bayliffs neck, saying, Since you will have all, then you shal have all. He was quickly so sensible of the fire, that he roared and cryed out like a Mad-man, and believing that it would burn him to death, for it had already made his flesh fry, to save his Neck and Shoulders, was forced to take it hot as it was, into his hands, so to throw it off: This adventure was like to have proved Tragical to the hard-hearted Bayliff, who with much difficulty disingaged himself. But our two Extravagants were extreamly well-pleased with the VVasher-womans Revenge, as we hope the Reader will be; and now we shall put an end to this Fourth Part: And, if (as we hope) you are pleased with what is already written, we shall in short time give you greater pleasure and satisfaction in the Continuation of our Extravagants adventures, which shall be fully finished in a fifth and last Part.


FINIS.

 
 
 

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