PART THE FIRST.
edited by R. H.
Tom's Birth and Parentage.
In the reign of William the Conqueror, having read in
ancient records, there lived in the Isle of Ely, in Cambridgeshire,
a man named Thomas Hickathrift, a poor labourer,
yet he was an honest, stout man, and able to do as much
work in a day as two ordinary men. Having only one son,
he called him after his own name, Thomas. The old man
put his son to school, but he would not learn anything.
It pleased God to call the old man aside, and his mother
being tender of her son, she maintained him by her own
labour as well as she could; but all his delight was in the
corner; and he ate as much at once as would serve five
At ten years old he was near six feet high, and three in
thickness; his hand was much like to a shoulder of mutton,
and every other part proportionable; but his great strength
was yet unknown.
How Thomas Hickathrift's Great Strength
Came to be Known.
Tom's mother, being a poor widow, went to a rich farmer's
house to beg a bundle of straw to shift herself and her son
Thomas. The farmer, being an honest charitable man, bid
her take what she wanted. She going home to her son
Thomas, said, "Pray go to such a place, and fetch me a bundle
of straw; I have asked leave." He swore he would not go.
"Nay, prithee go," said the good old mother. He again swore
he would not go, unless she would borrow him a cart rope.
She being willing to please him, went and borrowed one.
Then taking up the cart rope, away he went, and coming
to the farmer's house, the master was in the barn, and two
other men threshing.
Said Tom, "I am come for a bundle of straw." "Tom," said
the farmer, "take as much as thou can'st carry." So he laid
down his cart rope, and began to make up his bundle.
"Your rope, Tom," said they, "is too short," and jeered
him. But he fitted the farmer well for his joke; for when
he had made up his burden, it was supposed to be near a
thousand weight. "But," said they, "what a fool thou art;
for thou can'st not carry the tithe of it." But, however, he
took up his burden, and made no more of it than we do of
an hundred pounds weight, to the great astonishment of
both master and men.
Now Tom's strength beginning to be known in the town,
they would not let him lie basking in the chimney corner,
every one hiring him to work, seeing he had so much
strength, all telling him it was a shame for him to lie idle
as he did from day to day; so that Tom finding them bait
at him as they did, went first to one to work and then to
One day a man came to him, desiring him to bring a tree
home. So Tom went with him and four other men.
Now when they came to the wood they set the cart by
the tree, and began to draw it by pulleys; but Tom seeing
them not able to stir it, said, "Stand aside, fools," and so set
on the one end, and then put it into the cart. "There,"
said he, "see what a man can do!" "Marry," said they,
"that is true indeed."
Having done, and coming through the wood, they met the
woodman; and Tom asked him for a stick to make his
mother a fire with.
"Aye," says the woodman, "take one."
So Tom took up a bigger than that on the cart, and
putting it on his shoulder, walked home with it faster than
the six horses in the cart drew the other.
Now this was the second instance of Tom showing his
strength; by which time he began to think that he had
more natural strength than twenty common men, and from
that time Tom began to grow very tractable; he would
jump, run, and take delight in young company, and would
ride to fairs and meetings, to see sports and diversions.
One day going to a wake where the young men were met,
some went to wrestling, and some to cudgels, some to
throwing the hammer, and the like.
Tom stood awhile to see the sport, and at last he joined
the company in throwing the hammer: at length he took
the hammer in his hand, and felt the weight of it, bidding
them stand out of the way, for he would try how far he could
"Ay," says the old smith, "you will throw it a great way,
I warrant you."
Tom took the hammer, and giving it a swing, threw it
into a river four or five furlongs distant, and bid them go
and fetch it out.
After this Tom joined the wrestlers, and though he had no
more skill than an ass, yet by main strength he flung all he
grasped with; if once he but laid hold they were gone;
some he threw over his head, and others he laid gently down.
He did not attempt to look or strike at their heels, but
threw them two or three yards from him, and sometimes on
their heads, ready to break their necks. So that at last none
durst enter the ring to wrestle with him, for they took
him to be some devil among them.
Thus was the fame of Tom's great strength spread more
and more about the country.
How Tom became a Brewer's Servant; how he killed a
Giant, and came to be called Mr. Hickathrift.
Tom's fame being spread, no one durst give him an angry
word; for being foolhardy, he cared not what he did, so
that those who knew him would not displease him. At last
a brewer of Lynn, who wanted a lusty man to carry beer to
the Marsh and to Wisbeach, hearing of Tom, came to hire
him; but Tom would not hire himself till his friends
persuaded him, and his master promised him a new suit of
clothes from top to toe, and also that he should be his man;
and the master showed him where he should go, for there
was a monstrous giant who kept part of the Marsh, and
none dared to go that way; for if the giant found them he
would either kill them or make them his servants.
But to come to Tom and his master, Tom did more in one
day than all the rest of his men did in three: so that his
master seeing him so tractable and careful in his business,
made him his head man, and trusted him to carry beer by
himself, for he needed none to help him. Thus Tom went
each day to Wisbeach, a journey of near twenty miles.
Tom going this journey so often, and finding the other
road the giant kept nearer by the half, and Tom having
increased his strength by being so well kept, and improving
his courage by drinking so much strong ale; one day as he
was going to Wisbeach, without saying anything to his
master or any of his fellow servants, he resolved to make the
nearest road or lose his life; to win the horse or lose the
saddle; to kill or be killed, if he met with this giant.
Thus resolved, he goes the nearest way with his cart,
flinging open the gates in order to go through; but the giant
soon spied him, and seeing him a daring fellow, vowed to
stop his journey and make a prize of his beer; but Tom
cared not a groat for him, and the giant met him like a roaring
lion, as though he would have swallowed him up.
"Sirrah," said he, "who gave you authority to come this
way? Do you not know that I make all stand in fear of
my sight? and you, like an impudent rogue, must come and
fling open my gates at pleasure. Are you so careless of your
life that you do not care what you do? I will make you an
example to all rogues under the sun. Dost thou not see
how many heads hang upon yonder tree that have offended
my laws? Thine shall hang higher than any of them all."
"A tod in your teeth," said Tom, "you shall not find me
"No," said the giant; "why, you are but a fool if you
come to fight me, and bring no weapon to defend thyself."
Cries Tom, "I have got a weapon here that shall make
you know I am your master."
"Aye, say you so, sirrah," said the giant, and then ran to
his cave to fetch his club, intending to dash his brains out
at a blow.
While the giant was gone for his club, Tom turned his
cart upside down, taking the axle tree and wheel for his
sword and buckler; and excellent weapons they were on
such an emergency.
The giant coming out again began to stare at Tom, to see
him take the wheel in one of his hands and the axle tree in
"Oh, oh!" said the giant, "you are like to do great things
with those instruments; I have a twig here that will beat
thee, thy axle tree, and wheel to the ground."
Now that which the giant called a twig was as thick as a
mill post; with this the giant made a blow at Tom with
such force as made his wheel crack.
Tom, not in the least daunted, gave him as brave a blow
on the side of the head, which made him reel again.
"What," said Tom, "have you got drunk with my small
beer already?" The giant recovering, made many hard
blows at Tom; but still as they came he kept them off with
his wheel, so that he received but very little hurt.
In the meantime Tom plied him so well with blows that
sweat and blood ran together down the giant's face, who,
being fat and foggy, was almost spent with fighting so long,
so begged Tom to let him drink, and then he would fight
"No," said Tom, "my mother did not teach me such wit.
Who is fool then?" Whereupon, finding the giant grew
weak, Tom redoubled his blows till he brought him to the
The giant, finding himself overcome, roared hideously,
and begged Tom to spare his life and he would perform anything
he should desire, even yield himself unto him and be
But Tom, having no more mercy on him than a dog upon
a bear, laid on him till he found him breathless, and then
cut off his head, after which he went into his cave, and there
found great store of gold and silver, which made his heart
leap for joy.
When he had rummaged the cave, and refreshed himself a
little, he restored the wheel and axle tree to their places, and
loaded his beer on his cart, and went to Wisbeach, where he
delivered his beer, and returned home the same night as
Upon his return to his master, he told him what he had
done, which, though he was rejoiced to hear, he could not
altogether believe, till he had seen if it were true.
Next morning Tom's master went with him to the place,
to be convinced of the truth, as did most of the inhabitants
When they came to the place they were rejoiced to find
the giant quite dead; and when Tom showed them the
head and what gold and silver there was in the cave, all of
them leaped for joy; for the giant had been a great enemy
to that part of the country.
News was soon spread that Tom Hickathrift had killed
the giant, and happy was he that could come to see the
giant's cave; and bonfires were made all round the
country for Tom's success.
Tom, by the general consent of the country, took possession
of the giant's cave and riches. He pulled down the cave,
and built himself a handsome house on the spot. He gave
part of the giant's lands to the poor for their common, and
the rest he divided and enclosed for an estate to maintain
him and his mother.
Now Tom's fame was spread more and more through the
country, and he was no longer called plain Tom, but Mr.
Hickathrift, and they feared his anger now almost as much
as they did that of the giant before.
Tom now finding himself very rich, resolved his neighbours
should be the better for it. He enclosed himself a park and
kept deer; and just by his house he built a church, which he
dedicated to St. James, because on that saint's day he killed
How Tom kept a pack of Hounds, and of his being attacked
by some Highwaymen.
Tom not being used to such a stock of riches, could hardly
tell how to dispose of it; but he used means to do it, for he
kept a pack of hounds and men to hunt them; and who but
Tom; he took much delight in sports and exercises, and he
would go far and near to a merry making.
One day as Tom was riding he saw a company at football,
and dismounted to see them play for a wager; but he spoiled
all their sport, for meeting the football, he gave it such a
kick that they never found it more; whereupon they began
to quarrel with Tom, but some of them got little good by it;
for he got a spar, which belonged to an old house that had
been blown down, with which he drove all opposition before
him, and made a way wherever he came.
After this, going home late in the evening, he was met by
four highwaymen, well mounted, who had robbed all the
passengers that travelled on that road.
When they saw Tom, and found that he was alone, they
were cock sure of his money, and bid him stand and deliver.
"What must I deliver?" cries Tom. "Your money,
sirrah," said they. "Aye," said Tom, "but you shall give
me better words for it first, and be better armed too."
"Come, come," said they, "we came not here to prate, but
for your money, and money we must have before we go."
"Is it so?" said Tom; "then get it and take it."
Whereupon one of them made at him with a rusty sword,
which Tom immediately wrenched out of his hand, and
attacked the whole four with it, and made them set spurs
to their horses; but seeing one had a portmanteau behind
him, and supposing it contained money, he more closely
pursued them, and soon overtook them and cut their
journey short, killing two of them and sadly wounding the
other two, who, begging hard for their lives, he let them go,
but took away all their money, which was about two
hundred pounds, to bear his expenses home.
When Tom came home he told them how he had served
the poor football players and the four thieves, which produced
much mirth and laughter amongst all the company.
Tom, meets with a Tinker and of the Battle
Some time afterwards, as Tom was walking about his
estate to see how his workmen went on, he met upon the
skirts of the forest a very sturdy tinker, having a good staff
on his shoulder and a great dog to carry his budget of tools.
So Tom asked the tinker from whence he came and
whither he was going, as that was no highway? Now the
tinker being a very sturdy fellow, bid him go look, what
was that to him? But fools must always be meddling.
"Hold," said Tom, "before you and I part I will make
you know who I am."
"Aye," says the tinker, "it is three years since I had a
combat with any man; I have challenged many a one, but
none dare face me, so I think they are all cowards in this
part of the country; but I hear there is a man lives hereabouts
named Thomas Hickathrift, who has killed a giant,
him I'd willingly see to have a bout with him."
"Aye," said Tom, "I am the man. What have you to say
"Truly," said the tinker, "I am very glad we are so
happily met, that we may have one touch."
"Surely," said Tom, "you are but in jest."
"Marry," said the tinker, "but I am in earnest."
"A match," said Tom.
"It is done," said the tinker.
"But," said Tom, "will you give me leave to get me a
"Aye," said the tinker, "I hate him that fights with a
So Tom stepped to a gate and took a rail for a staff. So
to it they fell. The tinker at Tom, and Tom at the tinker,
like two giants. The tinker had a leather coat on, so that
every blow Tom gave him made it roar again, yet the tinker
did not give way an inch till Tom gave him such a bang on
the side of the head that felled him to the ground.
"Now, tinker, where art thou?" said Tom. But the
tinker being a nimble fellow, leaped up again, and gave Tom
a bang, the which made him reel, and following his blows,
took Tom on the other side, which made him throw down
his weapon and yield the mastery to the brave tinker.
After this Tom took the tinker home to his house, where
we shall leave them to improve their acquaintance, and get
themselves cured of the bruises they gave each other. And
for a further account of the merry pranks of Tom and the
tinker, the reader is referred to the Second Part, which is
far more entertaining than this.
PART THE SECOND.
Tom Hickathrift and the Tinker conquer Ten Thousand
In and about the Isle of Ely, many disaffected persons, to
the number of ten thousand or upwards, drew themselves
together in a body, pretending to contend for their rights
and privileges, which they said had been greatly infringed;
insomuch that the civil magistrates of the country thought
themselves in great danger of their lives.
Whereupon the sheriff by night came to the house of Mr.
Thomas Hickathrift, as a secure place of refuge in so
eminent a time of danger, where he laid open to Mr.
Hickathrift the unreasonableness of the complaint of these
rebels, and begged his protection and assistance.
"Sheriff," said Tom, "what service my brother," meaning
the tinker, "and I can perform shall not be wanting."
This said, in the morning, by break of day, with trusty
clubs, they both went out, desiring the sheriff to be their
guide in conducting them to the place where the rebels
When they came there, Tom and the tinker marched
boldly up to the head of them, and demanded the reason
why they disturbed the government? To which they
replied, "That their will was their law, and by that only we
will be governed."
"Nay," said Tom, "if it be so, these are our weapons, and
by them ye shall be chastised." These words were no
sooner out of his mouth, but the tinker and he threw themselves
both together into the crowd, where with their clubs
they beat down all before them. Nay, remarkable it was,
the tinker struck a tall man upon the neck with such force
that his head flew off and was carried ten yards from him,
and struck the chief leader with such violence as levelled
him to the ground.
Tom, on the other hand, pressing forward, beat down all
before him, making great havoc, till by an unfortunate blow
he broke his club; yet he was not in the least dismayed, for he
presently seized a lusty, stout, raw-boned miller, and so made
use of him for a weapon, till at last they cleared the field,
that not one of them durst lift up their hand against them.
Shortly after Tom took some of them and exposed them
to public justice; the rest being pardoned at the request of
Tom and the tinker.
Tom Hickathrift and the Tinker are sent for up to Court;
and of their kind Entertainment.
The king being truly informed of the faithful services performed
by these his loving subjects, Tom Hickathrift and
the tinker, he was pleased to send for them and the nobility.
Now after the banquet the king said, "These are my
trusty and well-beloved subjects, men of known courage and
valour, who conquered ten thousand persons who were met
together to disturb the peace of my realm.
"According to the characters given of Thomas Hickathrift
and Henry Nonsuch, persons here present, which cannot be
matched in the world; all were it possible to have an army
of 20,000 such, I durst immediately venture to act the part
of great Alexander.
"As a proof of my favour, kneel down and receive the order
of knighthood, Mr. Hickathrift; and as for Henry Nonsuch
I will settle upon him a reward of forty pounds a year
So said, the king withdrew, and Sir Thomas Hickathrift
and Henry Nonsuch, the tinker, returned to their home.
But, to the great grief of Sir Thomas Hickathrift, he found
his mother dead and buried.
Tom, after the Death of his Mother, goes a-wooing; and of
a Trick he served a Gallant, who had offended him.
Tom's mother being dead, and he left alone in a spacious
house, he found himself strange; therefore began to consider
with himself that it would not be amiss to seek a wife; so,
hearing of a rich and young widow in Cambridge, he goes
to her and makes his addresses, and at the first coming she
seemed to show him much favour; but between that and
his coming again she gave entertainment to an airy, brisk,
and young spark that happened to come in while Tom was
there a second time.
He looked very wistfully at Tom, and Tom stared as
fiercely at him again; so at last the young spark began to
abuse Tom with very affronting language, saying he was a
lubberly welp and a scoundrel.
"A scoundrel!" said Tom. "Better sayings would
become you; and if you do not instantly mend your
manners, you will meet with correction."
At which the young man challenged him; so to the yard
they went—the young man with his sword, and Tom with
neither stick nor staff.
Said the spark, "Have you nothing to defend yourself?
Then I shall the sooner despatch you."
So he made a pass at Tom, but that he butt by; and then,
wheeling round unto his back, Tom gave him such a nice
kick in the breech as sent the spark like a crow up in
the air, whence he fell upon the ridge of a thatched house,
and came down into a fish-pond, where he had certainly been
drowned if it had not been for a poor shepherd, who was
walking by that road, and, seeing him floating on the water,
dragged him out with his hook, and home he returned like a
drowned rat; whilst Tom enjoyed the kind embraces of his
How Tom served Two Troopers, whom the Spark had
hired to beset him.
Now the young gallant vexed himself to think how Tom
had conquered him before his new mistress, so was resolved
on speedy revenge, and, knowing he was not able to cope
with Tom, he hired two lusty troopers, well mounted, to lie
in ambush under a thicket, which Tom was to pass on his
way home, and so accordingly they both attempted to set
"How now, rascals!" said Tom; "what would you be
at? Are you indeed so weary of your lives that you so
unadvisedly set upon one who is able to crush you like a
cucumber?" The two troopers, laughing at him, said they
were not to be daunted at his high words. "High words!"
said Tom; "nay, now I will come to action," and so ran
between them, catching them in his arms, horses and men,
as easy as if they had been but two baker's bavins.
In this manner he steered homewards, but, as he passed
through a company of haymakers, the troopers cried, "Stop
him! stop him! He runs away with two of the king's
troopers." But they laughed to see Tom hugging them,
frequently upbraiding them for their baseness, saying he'd
make mince meat of them for crows and jackdaws.
This was a dreadful lecture to them, and the poor rogues
begged he would be merciful to them, and they would discover
the whole plot, and who was the person that employed
them, which they accordingly did, and gained favour in the
sight of Tom, who pardoned them on promise that they
would never be concerned in so villainous an action as that
was for the future.
Tom, going to be Married, is set upon by Twenty-one
Ruffians; and of the Havock he made.
In regard Tom had been hindered hitherto by the troopers,
he delayed his visit to his lady and love till the next day,
and, coming to her, he gave her a full account of what had
She was much pleased at this relation, and received him
with joy and satisfaction, knowing it was safe for a woman
to marry with a man who was able to defend her against any
assault whatever; and so brave a man as Tom was found to be.
The day of marriage being appointed, and friends and
relations invited, yet secret malice, which is never satisfied
but with revenge, had like to have prevented it; for, having
near three miles to go to church, the aforementioned gentleman
had provided one-and-twenty ruffians to destroy Tom,
for to put them to consternation.
Howbeit, it so happened in a private place, all bolted out
upon Tom, and with a spear gave him a slight wound,
which made his sweetheart shriek out lamentably. Tom
endeavoured to pacify her, saying, "Stand you still, and I
will soon show you some pleasant sport."
Here he catched hold of a broad-sword from the side of
one of the company, and behaved so gallantly with it that
at every stroke he took off a joint. He spared their lives,
but lopped off their legs and arms, that in less than a
quarter of an hour there was not one in the company but
had lost a limb. The grass was all stained with a purple
gore, and the ground was covered with legs and arms.
His lover and the rest of the company were all this while
standing by and admiring his valour, crying out, "O, what
a sight of cripples has he made in a short time!"
"Yes," said Tom, "I verily believe that for every drop of
blood I have lost I have made the rascals pay me a limb,
as a just tribute."
This said, he steps to a farmer's house, and hired a
servant, by giving him twenty shillings to carry the several
cripples home to their respective habitations in his cart,
and then posted to church with his love, when they were
heartily merry with their friends after this encounter.
Tom provides a Feast for all the poor Widows in the
adjacent Towns; and how he served an Old
Woman who Stole a Silver Cup.
Now Tom, being married, made a plentiful feast, to which
he invited all the poor widows in the parish, for the sake of
his mother, who had been lately buried.
This feast was carried on with the greatest solemnity,
and, being ended, a silver cup was missing, and being asked
about it they all denied it.
At last, all being searched, the cup was found on an old
woman named Strumbelow. Then all the rest were in a
rage; some were for hanging her, others for chopping the
old woman in pieces for ingratitude to such a generous
But he entreated them all to be quiet, saying they should
not murder a poor old woman, for he would appoint a
punishment for her, which was this:—He bored a hole
through her nose, and put a string in it, and then ordered
her to be stripped; so commanding the rest of the old
women to lead her through all the streets and lanes in
Cambridge, which comical sight caused a general laughter.
This being done, she had her clothes again, and so was
Sir Thomas and his Lady are sent for up to Court;
and of what happened at that Time.
Now, tidings of Tom's wedding was soon raised at court,
insomuch that they had a royal invitation there, in order
that the king might have a sight of his newly-married lady.
Accordingly, they came, and were received with much joy
Whilst they were in the midst of their mirth news was
brought the king by the Commons of Kent that a very
dreadful giant was landed in one of the islands, and had
brought with him a great number of bears, and also young
lions, with a dreadful dragon, upon which he always rode,
which said monster and ravenous beasts had much frighted
all the inhabitants of the said island. And, moreover, they
said, if speedy course was not taken to suppress them in due
time, they would destroy the country.
The king, hearing of this relation, was a little startled;
yet he persuaded them to return home, and make the best
defence they could for the present, assuring them that he
would not forget them, and so they departed.
Tom is made Governor of East Angles, now called the Isle
of Thanet; and of the wonderful Achievements
he there performed.
The king, hearing these dreadful tidings, immediately sat
in council to consider what was best to be done for the
conquering this giant and wild beasts.
At length Tom Hickathrift was pitched upon as being a
stout and bold subject, for which reason it was judged
necessary to make him Governor of that island, which place
of trust he readily accepted; and accordingly he went down
with his wife and family to take possession of the same,
attended by a hundred and odd knights and gentlemen at
least; they taking leave of him, and wishing him all health
Many days he had not been there before it was his
fortune to meet this monstrous giant, for thus it was:—Sir
Thomas, looking out at his own window, espied this giant
mounted on a dreadful dragon, and on his shoulder he bore
a club of iron. He had but one eye, which was in the
middle of his forehead, and was as large as a barber's basin,
and seemed like flaming fire, the hair of his head hanging
down like snakes, and his beard like rusty wire.
Lifting up his eye, he saw Sir Thomas, who was viewing
him from one of the windows of the castle. The giant
then began to knit his brows, and to breathe forth some
threatening words to the Governor, who, indeed, was a little
surprised at the approach of such a monstrous and ill-favoured
The monstrous giant, finding that Tom did not make
much haste to get down to him, alighted from his
dragon, and chained him to an oak tree, then marched to
the castle, setting his broad shoulders against the corner of
the wall as if he intended to overthrow the whole bulk of
the building at once. Tom, perceiving it, said, "Is this the
game you would be at? Faith, I shall spoil your sport, for
I have a tool to pick your teeth with."
He then took the two-handed sword the king gave
him, down he went, and, flinging open the gate, he
there finds the giant, who, by an unfortunate slip in his
thrusting, was fallen along, and there lay, not able to defend
"How now!" said Tom; "do you come here to take up
your lodging? This is not at all to be suffered." And
with that he ran his long broad sword between the giant's
tawny buttocks, and made the brute give a groan almost as
loud as thunder.
Then Sir Thomas, pulling out his sword again, and at six
or seven blows he severed his head, which, when cut off,
seemed like the root of a great oak; then, turning to the
dragon, which was all this time chained to a tree, without
any more ado, at a few blows cut off that also.
This adventure being over, he sent for a waggon and
horses, and loaded them with the heads, and then summoned
all the constables of the county for a safeguard, and sent
them to the court, with a promise to his Majesty that in a
short time he would clear the island of all the bears, lions,
The Tinker, hearing of Tom's Fame, he goes to his Partner;
and of his being unfortunately slain by a Lion.
Tom's victories rang so loud that they reached the ears of
his old acquaintance the tinker, who, being desirous of
honour, resolved to go down and visit him in his government;
and coming there he was kindly entertained.
After a few days' pleasure, Tom told him he must go in
search of some bears and lions in the island.
"Then," said the tinker, "I will go with you."
"With all my heart," said Tom, "for I must own I shall
be glad of your company." On this they went forward—Tom
with his great sword and the tinker with his pike staff.
After they had travelled four or five hours, it was their
fortune to meet all the wild beasts together, being in number
fourteen, six of which were bears, the other eight young
lions. When these creatures had set their eyes on them
they ran furiously, as if they would have devoured them at
a mouthful, but Tom and the tinker stood side by side, with
their backs against an oak, until the lions and bears came
within their reach. Tom, with his sword, clave all their
heads asunder, until they were all destroyed, except one
young lion, who, seeing the rest of his fellow-creatures dead,
he was making his escape; but the tinker, being too venturous,
ran hastily after him, and gave the lion a blow.
The beast turned upon him, and seized him with such
violence by the throat as soon ended his life.
Tom's joy was now mingled with sorrow, for, though he
had cleared the island of those ravenous beasts, yet his grief
was intolerable for the loss of his friend.
Home he returned to his lady, where, in token of joy for
the success he'd had in his dangerous enterprizes, he made
a very noble and splendid feast, to which he invited all his
friends and acquaintances, and then made the following
"My friends, while I have strength to stand,
Most manfully I will pursue
All dangers, till I clear the land
Of lions, bears, and tigers too."