[ The Man in the Moone Telling Strange Fortunes; or, The English Fortune-Teller (1609) is fully reproduced from Books of Characters illustrating the Habits and Manners of Englishmen from the Reign of James I to the Restoration selected by James Orchard Halliwell and published London 1857. The page numbering from Halliwell's edition has been retained.]
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Man in the Moone
The English Fortune-Teller.
Nihil sub sole certum.
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Man in the Moone.
To his worthie friend, M. Thomas Smith of Clarkenwell, and gentleman to the Right Honorable the Lord Lesle, Lord Chamberlane to the queene's most excellent Majestie.
GENTLE SIR, to rippe up the excellent parts abiding in you might be reputed parasiticall by many, and offensive to you, whom I know no whit vaine glorious : to disclose your kindnesse towards my weake deserving would be accounted follie, that I could not receive a benefit, but make all the world acquainted therewith : to desire you secure this poore infant of my braine with your favour, as with Ajax shield, were too trite an imitation, an apes tricke : therefore leaving fawning to flatterers, and offence to him that mindes it, bequeathing follie to such as will not keepe their owne councell, and imitation to them that cannot invent, I doe plainely present this part of my love unto you. Your ever lovingTo the Reader
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GOOD fortune to you, for the fortune-teller meaneth so, whatsoever you thinke : if his attendant Opinion decipher you plainely, his fashion is not to make faire figures of deformed bodies : if his page, Mockso, gibe at your ill manners, it is to make you mend them ; and if hee himselfe, the principall, cutteth you to the quicke, know that hee is no cogging chirurgion : what false orthographie escapeth in the print, impute to the hast of the supravisor of the proofes, for I have read the spelling booke ; what blame you put on the penning lay upon mee, it will make mee wiser.
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Man in the Moone
The English Fortune-teller.
The description of the Drunkard comming in a merrie
TRAVELLING a long journey, and striving one day beyond my reach, the sudden approach of the night prevented me, so that being unexperienced in the way, and seeing no reasonable creature to direct me, I was affrighted. The starres stared upon me, beastes looked wistly after me, battes flew about mine eares, and the owle whooted over mine head : no plow-men whistling alongst the fallowes ; no shepheard singing over the downes ; the partrage was not diseased by the spaniell ; the hare stole his foode without feare of the hue and crie of hounds and hunters. Whistnesse had taken possession of the woods ; stilnes made aboad in the fieldes, and darkenes domineered in the zodiacke ; no light had I to see my footsteps ; no voice heard I to make unto. Thus / p.78 / I wandred, I knew not where ; came to a place, I knew not whether ; and had a glimsse of one sitting in a porch, I knew not whom. A while I stood aloofe, leaning on my staffe like a wearied pilgrime, and meditated with myselfe whether fortunately, or unhappily, I stumbled thither. By the solitarinesse of the house I judged it a lodge in a forrest, but there was no bawling of dogges thereabout ; by the multiplicity of barnes I thought it some farmer's tenement, but there was no grunting of swine neare it; by the moate about it seemed some gentleman's mannor, but I could espie no wagges watching, nor wantons wagging out to breath themselves when their maddam was covered ; what it was, after I had eaten a little heart a grasse, which grew at my feete, I feared not, and who was the owner I greatly cared not, but boldly accosted him, and desired house-roome ; he pried in my face, tooke me by the hand, ledde me into his house, placed me in a chaire by the fire, and without any intergatories saluted me courteously, and went into an other roome. Strange it was, and struck me in some dumpes, but considering his gentle action and gravity I a little revived ; for he was of yeares many, of stature reasonable, of complexion sanguine, no pride in his apparell, no sullennesse in his lookes, silence sate in his hall, and sobriety in his butteries, temperance in his kitchen, and chastitie in his chambers, no scoulding with his cookes, nor carousing with his serving-men. This I observed, and sat very sadly, till a striplin requested me to follow him where the old man sat at a table furnished, not superfluously, but with sufficient nourishment ; downe he bad me sit and welcome. Grace he / p.79 / said (then thought I, there is no feare in this place if there be grace), that which stood before me I fed on, and dranke when neede required : being well refreshed, as he beganne with thanksgiving, so he ended supper, and then said thus soberly unto me. "Sonne, you might marveile at your entertainement, and repute mee mute, or simple, to use no more words nor circumstances at my first view of you, but it is my fashion, as they which know me, know. For suppose I should aske you what you are ? A stranger I know you are, and being a stranger unto me you may say as well what you are not as what you are : had I demaunded whence you came, or whither you would, for the one you might have told me a contrary tale, and for the other your selfe is uncertaine : from what parentage you are descended I might question you, it is frivolous and womanish, if your qualities be degenerate ; how you were educated I might examine you, it is superfluous, your demeanour will informe me : fall to your meate I might have bidden you, it is needlesse if you had a stomacke : drinke to you I might, it may be I desire no further acquaintance of you, till I knowe your conditions further ; but howsoever if you be my friend to use you unkindly were ingratitude : are you mine enemy ? to use you friendly is charity ; if you are capable you do understand my meaning, and shall know more ere we part : if you are ignorant you may tast part of my mind by the meat, drinke, and lodging I bestowe gratis upon you." This is short and sensible, thought I, and made him this answere in his own dialect :— " Sir, if I could not gratifie your kindnesse with loving words you might deem me rusticall ; if I should not labour to / p.80 / repay your love with my kindest requitall you might esteeme mee unthankefull ; but seeing I cannot instantly performe the one, I will remaine your debter in very deede, and in one word heartily thanke you for this unexpected courtesie, and howsoever I may seeme rude and illiterate, yet was I long trained up where good manners grew and learning flourished." " I was once, myselfe, a lover of the Muses too," said hee, " but I had a running head, and would take no settled course ; many countries have I travelled, and beheld sundrie manners, but when age beganne to tame that never otherwise suppressable indomitam juventutem, I pent myselfe in this house, where I have long time beene resident : much preferment might I have mounted to, but I knew it troublesome, plus aloes quam mellis habens: choise of wives I might have made, but by the triall of others I perceived them but mala necessaria, inconvenient commodities : great riches could I have gathered, but I found them fuller of perturbations than pleasures : if I might live alwaies, perchance then I should make me a tabernacle upon earth, but considering how small a time I have allotted in the earth I respected riches as the sand I trample on ; rejected honour as a bubble, a puffe of winde, vocem populi, a meere sound, and weighed women as lightlie as fethers. No, my sonne, that which God hath bestowed upon me I am contented withall. If I am now base, my griefe is the lesse, I was never better : if I am poore, my sorrow is the fuisse fœlicem ; I was never richer, yet have I that which sufficeth nature. And this is my greatest griefe, because I have separated myselfe from the world, and labour to helpe such as want, and wil take paines / p.81 / to come to me, aut consolando aut consilio aut re, I am accounted, amongst the silly, a cunning man, a south-sayer or deviner, one that can tell fortunes."
" Beleeve me, sir," said I, " it is so bruted here about, and that tomorrow many will resort unto you to knowe their fortunes, whereof I was one, not with purpose to know my fortune, for I thinke it proper only to the Omnipotent."
" You say well, and it is my affliction that they should attribute that to me which perteineth to my Maker : yet since I am constrained I will shew them their fortunes, and what will betide them every one : but now, seeing it waxeth late and you wearie, I referre you to your rest for this part of the night, and in the morning you shall heare more." Kindly we parted, and the next day, when I was up and ready, I found the olde man seated in a chaire : who willed me to take my place as a spectator.
He sat very soberly, like Hypocrates ; his beard was reverent, and his face wrinckled, a plaine gowne, girded close about his loynes, a paire of blacke buskins upon his legges, a fur'd night-cap on his head, and a paire of thicke mittens upon his hands : on his left-side stood a pert juvinall, as readie to give the welcome to all commers as a boy in a barre, and as nimble as a parasite in an old commodie : he was called Mockso, which in mocking sort described unto Fido the fantasticallity of each man's apparell, and apishnesse of gesture, who by their apparell and gesture would give a shrewd guesse at their inclinations.
On the right-side stood another, but of riper yeares, and more stayed carriage, yet somewhat criticall and taunting ; / p.82 / he cognominated him Opinion, whom he had so throughly instructed in phisiognomie that he would anotonize any ones condition at the first sight, and so apparently display them, that Fido, his master, would tell what would betide them : thus were these three addressed as actors : Mockso described the habite and gesture ; Opinion reveiled their conditions. Fido tolde every man his fortune as he came unto him for the same intent. Long had they not seated, but one knocked at the gate, as if he meant to burst it open. " See who is there," said Fido. Mockso skipped to the doore, giving every one the fœlicem adventum, and returned, saying :
humour to know his fortune by Mockso.
" Syr, I may be glad I had never a beard, hee would have singed it with his flaming nose ; whatsoever he be hee is troubled with an horses disease, the staggers. I thinke your pales anger him, he doth justle them on both sides : oake, he saith, they are made of, and spitteth whole pottles against them ; eheu quid faciam : what a hue is his face of? and his teeth as nastie as if they laie in a grave these seven yeres : his cloake will never hide his knaverie, it is so tattered ; and his breeches will shame all if he take wide strides ; hee hath no hat-band, nor girdle, they lie in trouble for two cannes ; now he setteth his hat on the toe side, and commeth sailing in like a shippe in a tempestuous tide."
/ p.83 /The opinion of the Drunkard.
" This fellow is one of the faithfull, as they prophanelie terme him," said Opinion ; " no Heliogabalus at meat, but he will drinke many degrees beyond a Dutchman ; if you love him, pledge that health, and if you be a good fellow, make no more such snuffes : his kingdome is an alehouse, and his scepter a can, which is seldome out of his hand : you queanes, or knaves, he crieth, no attendance upon gentlemen here, though he be but a tinker : fill us the other dozen, it is but taking Ludgate one yeare sooner : then hee flingeth the glasses against the wals, as if they cost nothing, and daunceth a round about a can, as if it were a May-pole : then he doth drivell his hostesse, and will dallie with any that weareth a crosse-cloth : then hee careth not for a deare yeare, nor to pay his landlord, but all that hee can get, or borrow, goeth to the pot : to be briefe with him, hee is his master's hinderance, if he be a servant : his servants torment, if he be a master : his wife's crosse, if he be an husband : his childrens beggering, if he be a father : his owne ruine whatsoever he is, a detested drunkard."
/ p.84 /Fido, the Fortune-teller's oration to the Drunkard,
wherein he telleth him his fortune.
True is the proverbe, though fustie to fine wits, When the drinke is in, the wit is out : but seeing you have set abroach the drinke, and drawne out all the dregs too, we may gather the wit is in ; the vice you are so addicted to is drunkennesse ; the mother of all mischiefe, the fewell of filthinesse, the roote of rogeries, the distemperance of the head, the subversion of the senses, the shipwracke of honestie, the losse of time, and voluntaire madnesse ; an ignominious languor, the detestation of manners, the disgrace of life : abhorred of God, detested of angels, derided of men. Yet although it be thus horribly detestable and ridiculous to God, angels, and men ; though it be thus prejudicial to your soule, body, and substance, yet were it a more easie matter to drawe Hercules his club out of his hand then to drive you, or any of your crew, from this filthie sinne : but you would turne like the dogge to his vomite, let me, or any other, perswade you as we can : and that which causeth me to be thus opinioned, you are so delighted therewith that you preferre the pleasure thereof before all other preferment ; and now I thinke of it, I remember a prettie tale, not impertinent to the same purpose. A gentleman of good worth, as he was riding alongst the highway, mette a sturdie fellow, who requested his almes : the gentleman replied that it was shame for him to begge, being yong and lustie, he was able to worke, or fit to serve, if he were in apparell. True, sir, said the begger, / p.85 / but apparell is not so easily gotten by such a poore man as myselfe. Goe home with mee, said the gentleman, and I will suite thee new, and thou shalt waite upon mee. Sir, answered the begger, I have a good suite of apparell in the next village which lieth not for above eightpence, if you will helpe me to that first I shall thinke myselfe beholding unto you, and will tell you more. The gentleman rid him as he ledde him : who brought him to an alehouse, and request him to alight, and enter with him. The gentleman was contented, and sat down, expecting when he would call for his apparell, that he might redeeme it, and take him along with him : the beggar called to his hostesse, saying ; Hostesse, bring hither my shirt ; shee brought him a black pot of ale, which he drank off : now, said he, bring me my dublet, then she brought him another pot of ale, which he dranke off : now my breeches ; another pot she brought him, that he dranke off : now bring my hose and shooes ; then she brought him two blacke pots of ale, those he drank off : now my hat-band and cloake ; then she brought him three blacke pots of ale, which he dranke off : when he had done this, he said : Gentleman, this is the suite I told you off, and now I have it I thinke I am as well apparelled as an emperour. The gentleman, smiling, paied for this ale, and departed ; so some of you, might it advantage them never so much, will never forsake their drunkennesse. This, therefore, is your fortune; you shall spend all your money, and runne so long on the score that the very wind-pipe of your credite shall bee so choakt, that if you doe not drinke it out with readie pay your hostesse will kicke you out of her doores : your wife will / p.86 / wish you in your grave ; your friendes be ashamed of you ; your enemies triumph over you : sober men shall shunne your companie ; boyes laugh at you as you passe by them : your bodie shall bee subject to diseases : you shall live with never a penie in your purse ; never a tatter on your backe ; no man will commit any matter of trust, or secresie, unto you ; and, in fine, you shall lie and die in some ditch, under some staule, or in some prison. If you like your fortune, proceede as you have hithertoo : but if you abandon it, better fortune will betide you."
The drunkard began to come prettily well to himselfe, and walked somwhat soberlie aside : and then Mokso whipped to the gate.
The Tobackonist commeth in a bravado to the Fortune-teller :
Mockso describeth him as he approached.
" Who is that ?" said Fido. "Sir," quoth Mockso, " I know not certainlie, but I thinke he cometh to play you a fitte of mirthe, for I behelde pipes in his pockette ; now he draweth forth his tinder-boxe and his touch-wood, and falleth to his tacklings : sure his throate is on fire, the smoake flyeth so fast from his mouth : blesse his beard with a bazen of water, least he burne it: some terrible thing hee taketh, it maketh him pant and looke pale, and hath an odious taste, he spitteth so after it. A boule and a broome, some bodie ! if he holdeth on thus long hee will make / p.87 / a puddle in your porch, and keepeth such a snuffing and puffing that he maketh all smoake again."
Opinion of the Tobackonist.
"O have patience, Mockso," said Opinion, " he is at his breake-fast: it is his heaven, or rather hell: I should thinke it sendeth forth such mistes, fogges, and vapours, five chimnies, well fewel'd, vent not more smoake then his mouth and nostrils : a man were better have his house situated between two brewhouses then abut upon his mansion ; I had rather thrust my head into a Jakes then peepe into his chamber. And nothing so noisome were it to bee yeoman to a close stoole, as to continue within fortie foote of his breathing, yet is the causer of these inconveniences meat and drinke to him, and he loveth it above the love of women : it is his morning's draught, when he riseth ; his conserves or cates, when he hath well dined ; his afternoones nuncions, and when he goeth to bedde, his posset smoaking-hote ; hee will not walke farre, nor talke long without it: nay, he will lose his victuals rather then neglect it : pawne his hat-band but he will have it. To be breefe with him, he is his owne strengths enfeebler, his beauties blemisher, his wittes blunter, his memories decayer, and his appetites abater ;—a toyish tobackonist.
/ p.88 /The Oration of Fido to the Tobackonist,
shewing his fortune.
" Sir," said Fido, " if I should extract the best counsell I coulde, being disswasive from your tobacko-taking, you would take it in snuffe, custome hath so strongly combined you thereunto, that it were too indissoluble a knot for me to untye : yet this let me tell you, that it is as an incensed Atropos to a long life, clipping off the thred before it be thoroughly spun, decaying and drying up the prolonger of breath : but you are perswaded, as others few, that it doth procure the contrary : you thinke it a medicine for every maladie ; give you tobacko, and a figge for the physitian : say it were physicke, as you affirme, yet physicke is not taken at al times and seasons, continually without interim ; neither is one kind of physicke administered to all bodies, constitutions, and diseases : but tobacko may bee compared to the potion which Circe gave to Ulisses souldiers, metamorphosing them into swine ; so this pretious weede, as you esteeme it, doth so selfe-besot those which take it, that, like swine, they wallow in the myre of their admiring conceits ; that neither reason can rule them, nor experience of others harmes, sustained thereby, make them refraine. I will not denie that conceit may worke wonders : but those wonders are onely in conceite ; as I have heard of some, who through an irreformable conceit, have imagined their noses to be as bigge as pinnicles to flye in the ayre, contend and quell divels by their owne naturall strength : so you, onely by conceit, / p.89 / thinke richly of the operation of your Indian pudding, having contrarie qualities in it, a thing repugnant to philosophy and working miraculous matters, a quillit above nature : as if you be fat, then you take it to make you leane (against the walles I hope you meane): if leane, then it will make you fat, put V. and S. to fat and I will beleeve you : if dull, quicke witted ; if oblivious, revive your memories ; doing these things and many more ; and helping all manner of diseases, the poxe it will as soone. But I could easily refute these, and all your opinions, had not this texte beene thoroughly traver'st and condemned, with great judgement and learning, in a solemne disputation ; and in the booke entituled, Worke for a Chimnie-sweeper : and were there as many volumnes written concerning this subject as Didimus wrote of the Grammer, you would martyre them, leafe by leafe, and light your pipes at the flame. Nitimur in vetitum, that which wisedome doth forbid folly will follow. This, therefore, is your fortune; if you leave not taking your Indian stuffe betime, custome will so confirme you to it, that when you perceive the inconveniences, and feel the folly thereof, you cannot forsake it, though you will. You shall die before your date ; your body shall be in subjection to sundrie sicknesse, and so sooted with the smoake thereof, that it will be as foule as hell, sending forth such a filthy sent that your breath will bee death to your wife, or any that sent it, but such as yourselfe."
Aside the tobackonist stepped, and another knocked at the gate.
/ p.90 /The Prodigall commeth stalking in to know his fortune :
Mockso deciphering his apparrell and gate.
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
Mockso answered ; " Sir, I know not of what countrey, nation, sex, or fashion he is. His face is like a man's, but by the tone side of his head like a woman : some purblinde barber powled him, to cut his haire so unequally, and leave one locke a quarter of a yard longer then the other : by the blocke of his head (put them both together, and see what they spell) he should bee a Spaniard, but his dublet sheweth him a Frenchman ; now I see his breeches made like a paire of smith's bellowes, erected with the small end upwards : he seemeth a Wolloone : marrie, there is no excesse in his cloake ! he tooke the lengthe thereof by the old apes of Paris Garden : a sweete youth, no doubt, for he hath two roses on his shoes, to qualifie the heat of his feete ; he looketh very bigly, and commeth prauncing in."
Opinion of the Prodigall
" This prauncer," said Opinion, " hath beene a wilde colt, and leaped thorough many honest men's gates in his dayes : he was his father's dotage, and his mother's darling ; he hath spent more upon his paunch then the primate of belly gods : gusled downe his throate more then Cleopatra quaffed in a bravado to Marke Anthonie : layed more gold upon his backe then that which procured passage for the asse into the castle / p.91 / would defray : naturall meat will not suffice him, he feedeth artificially : native apparell will not content him, he flieth for uplandish fashions : honest matrimonie is not for his loines, hee watcheth nightly, and walketh by day, to entrappe other mens wives : he is never safe but when he is in pestilent companie : never well but when he is evill employed : whores he supporteth, vintners he advanceth, tailers he maketh gentlemen, if he be not too farre in their bookes : to be briefe, he is Lecherie, Mæcenas, idlenesse patrone, Pride's founder, Gluttonies erector, Drunkennesse good god-father : an impudent prodigall."
The Fortune-teller's oration to the Prodigall, declaring the
inconveniences of dissolute living, and his fortune.
" Sir, you are generously descended, the greater is your shame to expose yourselfe to an ignoble course of living : much riches were you bequeathed, the more is the pittie you have so little grace to misemploy them ; well are you featured, it is ill bestowed unlesse you would preserve your beautie better : for that which God and nature have ordeined for your good, by your ill using you turne to your owne overthrowe. Had your progenitors runne the race you doe, they had never wonne the golden ball which made you a gentleman : you assume it an eminence, to be rarely arrayed : others, being wise, are not so conceited : you suppose it a great glory to lash your coyne, you care not where, nor upon whom ; though they will advance you, which receive benefites thereby, / p.92 / yet such as will not profite themselves by such meanes, resemble you to a candle, which wasteth itselfe to give others light : you esteeme it an extraordinarie happinesse to be in favour with many and sundry beauties : you shall feele the contrarie, pride will procure your fall, when you wot not of it ; excesse devoure your riches ere you are aware ; variety decay your bodie when you thinke it doth most delight it ; and when your bodie is decayed, your wealth devoured, yourselfe fallen, goe to your gossips, which now will hang like goodly jewels about your necke, and come with your purse emptie : stabis, Homere, foras, you may stand like an impecunious whoremaster at their doores. Come to your tradesmen, which now cappe and cringe you, and see if you shall receive any further comfort, then monefull words, alasse, it is pittie, would wee were able (good wishes for themselves); and last of al, frequent the ordinaries, which you have in a manner enriched, and marke how they will moane their own mischances, how they sit at an unmerciful rent ; what losses they have susteined by pilfering ; how many have runne away in their debts, and a thousand such circumstances, which you never heard, nor are likely, so long as you have money or meanes.
Dum juvet et ridet vultu fortuna sereno,|
Indelibatas cuncta sequuntur opes ;
At simul intonuit fugiunt, nec noscitur ulli
Agminibus comitum qui modo cinctus erat.
" Whilst you are mounted on the throne of fortune, great men will countenance you, gallants be your associates, / p.93 / parasites flatter you, brokers borrow for you, usurers lend you, citizens cap you, lawyers plead for you, serving-men crouch to you, wantons hang like burres upon you ; but when you are dejected under the wheele of chance, great men will not greatly regard you, gallants hoist their toppes and toppe-gallants and saile from you, flatterers shun you, brokers will not brooke you, usurers use you rigorously, tradesmen treade on the to side [lit.] of the way, lawyers leave you, serving-men hang the head as they meete you, wantons wish, or worke your overthrowe. This, therefore, is your fortune ; if you proceede as you have begunne, your full feeding wil make you leane, your drinking too many healthes will take all health from you, your leaping the pale will cause you looke pale, your too close following the fashion will bring you out of all forme and fashion, your carelesse life will lead you to a miserable death : yet you may prevent your misfortunes if now you will take opportunity : you have some wealth left, husband it carefully : of a little, well ordered, will rise more profite then much carelesly disposed : yet your wit is pregnant, by industrie you may season it with wisedome : yet your bodie is not past cure, new-bred diseases are soone remedied : if you scoffe at me for my good will, you may repent when you lie like a nutmegge in a grate, or ride post with a hempen halter out of the world ; but if you accept it, much good may it doe you."
The gallant very pensively walked aside, and Mockso went to the gate.
/ p.94 /The Serving-man waiting on this gallant commeth in to know
his fortune, whom Mockso decyphereth.
" What is it ?" said Fido.
" A most courteous creature," answered Mockso, " so stroke up your fore-toppe in any case ; pish, your band hangeth right enough : what, yet more crevises in your stockings ? fie upon it, how complementall he is, and kisseth his hand as if he were in love with it.
Opinion of the Serving-man.
" This fellow," said Opinion, " though he be no drunkard, yet he is none of his owne man : he was a pretty boy, an handsome stripling, and is a proper man ; peevish in his childhood, proude in his youth, prodigall now in his best yeares : he spendeth his portion in hope of preferment, wasteth his substance in liewe of advancement, consumeth quite all in expectation of some requitall ; his greatest felicity is to court the chamber-maides in a corner, and his chiefest exercise to make his masters friends dependants drunke ; hee fawneth upon them his master favoureth, and frumpeth those his mistresse frownes on ; he was trained up in some point of a joyner's trade, to make legges ; and the best part of his rhetoricke is, ' I forsooth,' and ' no forsooth :' the injunctions he standeth bounde too is, to runne at all calles, rise at all houres, and ride in all seasons : eating that which his master left, and wearing that which his / p.95 / master left, if hee can get it : which sheweth that he is the ante-ambulo of a gentlewoman, the consequent of a gentleman, the antecedent of a port-mantua, or a cloke-bagge : a serving-man."
Fidoes oration to the Serving-man, teaching him brieflye
how to behave himselfe in service, and telling
him his fortune.
" Ingratefull and hard hearted are many of our age, respecting none but such as profite and pleasure them at the instant : industrious, therefore, ought you be to get your master's favour ; and having gotten it, circumspect to keepe the same : and, albeit, some there are respecting their services no longer then they supplie their lustes and lucre, thrusting them out of their gates, unrewarded, for the smallest trifle and displeasure conceived against them : yet the world knoweth, and thousands will acknowledge the fluent liberality of true bred gentillity extended to their followers ; who, by the raising hand of their lord's assistance, have ascended many high and loftie steppes of dignity : but such masters are not sowne everie where, neither were they swaggering drunkards or swearing Jackes, which have thus flourishingly sprowted up by service, but men of good demeanor, and well qualified : for the wise looke not only on the outsides, they prie into behaviour, integritie, and uprightnesse. It is not profound quaffing or domineering will doe you any good ; roysting and ryoting wil never raise you, unlesse up to / p.96 / the gallowes. This, therefore, is your fortune ; if you be in good service and will not with care and diligence keepe you in it, when you would have the like againe you shall goe without it : if you take time you may thrive, but, if you let him passe by, you may call your heart out, and never reclaime him ; for Time, though hee be an olde man, yet he is quicke of foote, and having gotten the start of any is never overtaken : if you gather nothing in the summer of your youth, in the winter of your age you may goe begge ; for hee that might doe well and would not, when hee wanteth shalbe unpittied, and when you become old, and poore too, then shall you be spurned with the heele of disdaine by every foote-boy ; rejected as an old woman which spent her youth wantonly ; then shall you heare of your olde vagaries, your former follies shal be laide in your dish : if in your jollity you wronged any, they will wait for revenge in the time of your want and weakenesse : when the lion was olde and toothlesse the asse revenged an inveterate injurie he had sustained long before : but now you are in place, if you demeane yourselfe honestly now you are young, preserve that you get carefully : now you are in service, performe it faithfully : you may hereafter purchase much comfort, goods, and credit."
So the creature followed his master, and another knocked at the gate.
/ p.97 /The lewde Woman commeth to knowe her fortune,
whom Mockso describeth entring.
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" One with a maske forsooth, because you may aske," said Mockso. " A woman of tall stature and upright bodie (it is wel if her life be like it), high forehead, round cheeks, dimpled chinne, sleeke necke, and slender waste ; in a light coloured hat, light coloured fanne, light coloured gown ; though she were in the darke, she would appeare a light woman."
Opinion anatomizing the conditions of the wicked Woman.
" O," said Opinion, "this is one of your lazie, liquerous, lascivious, femenine ingenderers ; more wavering then a wethercocke, more wanton then an ape, more wicked then an infidell, the very sinke of sensuality and poole of putrifaction ; a Sylla to citizens, and Caribdis to countrie-men ; a comfort for cut-purses, and a companion for cony-catchers ; a factor for many taverns, and benefactor for most barber-surgeons ; a palsie to the bodie, a canker to the soule, a consumption to the purse ; by birth commonly a bastard, by nature a caniball, by art a Puritan ; in aluring a syren, in shew a saint, in deede a divell, and, in plaine English, a whoore : of all iniquities beleeve her not, for shee liveth by lying ; touch her not, for she is pitch, inquinans omnes qui tangunt eam : proffer her nothing, for she wil pocke-eat al. And now, sir, shee appeareth in her lightnesse before you."
/ p.98 /The Fortune-teller's oration to the mercinarie wicked Woman ;
declaring the abomination of her life and fortune.
" Faire creature, as I have beene effectually informed of your conditions, so would I labour to reforme them : but I might with as great hopes undertake to make a Black-More white as to change your minde, and easier raise an olde oake from the earth with my decrepit shoulders then roote out that lust which hath so long time beene set in your heart ; yet if you would consider the inconveniences thereof, which are to effeminate the minde, weaken the bodie, endanger the soule, it might prove a motive to disswade : you would account yourselfe madd, if knowing poison to be blended in a lumpe of sugar you should for the sweetnesse of the suger swallowe the poyson : what then can you make now of yourselfe, knowing lust a pleasant poyson ; hindering your health, ingendering diseases, bringing age before his time, blemishing your beauty ere it be out of the blossome, dulling your wit before it be well grounded, and drawing your minde from all vertuous cogitations : this you know for certainty, yet you will live in sensuality, disdaining Diana, and be a votarie to Venus ; contemning Vesta, and devoting yourselfe to quotidiall daliance ; making a mock at marriage, you will not enter into the bondes thereof because you will live loosely, without controll or subjection of an husband : yet are you servile to all slaverie, and subject to the controlement of every swaggerer ; he that / p.99 / hath money may command you ; he that can dominere will insult over you, making you crouch and curvet when he pleaseth. But if no warning wil make you wise, this then will be your fortune. You shall be ferrited like a cony out of every burrow, baited like a beare, whipped like a jade ; long shall you not dare to abide in one place, authority will so closely pursue you : what you get in a quarter you shall spend in a moneth ; nothing that you get will prosper with you, and what beauty and delectation your body now containeth shall be of small continuance ; your haire, which now is fast and thick, shall fall from your head like leaves in autumne ; your forehead, which now is smooth, shall soone be wrinkled like parched parchment: your complexion, which now is sanguine, shall be of a saffron colour : your cheekes, thinne ; your nosethrils, putrifactious : your mouth, toothlesse ; your breath, noysome ; your flesh, rotten ; your bones, cankerous ; your pleasure shall be turned into paine ; your singing into sorrow : aches shall lodge in your head, anguish in your heart, diseases in every part and parcell of your body, and after all these, thy soule suffer perpetuall torments."
Aside she walked, and Mockso, without any knocking, skipped to the doore, for the wagge imagined shee could not want companions, or servants, in this age, so long as her good face lasted.
The Retainer which waited on the Woman entereth to know
/ p.100 /
his fortune, whom Mockso describeth as hee enters.
" Is there any other come ?" said Fido.
" There is one comming," answered Mockso, " he will scarce see the way in, his haire hangeth so in his light : Fatuus in facie, et leno in corpore. He looketh fat in the face, and leane in the body : how full of choler he is ! yet so long as those huge slops swagge about him, he will be in some compasse : his bootes are wrinkled, as though they were made of olde wives' faces : what ! capt on the toes ? sure he will not put off one of those caps to the best man that meeteth him, and in sober sadnesse his spurres have scaped a scouring, they looke so rustily ; whatsoever he be, I thinke he would prove an honest man if hee would wash his face and serve God."
Opinion upon the Retainer.
" Serve God !" said Opinion, " the devill he will as soone ! hee hath not seene the insides of a church these seven yeares, unlesse with devotion to pick a pocket, or pervert some honest man's wife he would on purpose be pued withall : villanie is his contemplation, ribaldrie his talke, and detestation his deedes ; cardes and his darlings, wherewith he playeth, and a paire of dice his onely Paradice : he will omit no villanie he can cleanly commit ; he will cheat his father, cosen his mother, and cony-catch his owne sister ; if he can / p.101 / imagine the meanes how, his owne wife he will make a prostitute for mony, and hold the candle to any incarnate divell whilst he committeth the deedes of darknesse with her ; sixepence will make him sweare or forsweare anything : in a word, he is a post for puncks, an harbinger for whoremongers, a bloodhound for bawdes, a perfidious pander."
Fido, his speech to the Pander, shewing his lewdnesse
" O lamentable, thy case is damnable, thy trade odious, thy selfe abominable, thou art a man whose conditions I know not by experience, neither have I reade of many such as thyselfe in auncient writers ; yet some of thy sect there were of whom I tooke little notice, because I never meant to have any commerse with them : notwithstanding, seeing I have heard so much, I could amply delate of thy sinne, but I know it needlesse, for my hope is, I have dejected the foundation whereon all thy practises are built, I meane the woman, thy mistresse, which was even now with me, and if shee fall from her former follie thou canst not stand, unlesse thou gettest some crooked prop to support thee, which cannot hold long ; expect, therefore, no other fortune then untimely death, either by the stab in some drunken fray, managed in the defence of your maintainer, or by some disease got by her, or by the halter, if you do not alter."
Away the Pander walked after his mistresse, and another knocked at the gate.
/ p.102 /The Extortioner hobleth to know his fortune, and is described
by Mockso as he entereth.
" Who is that," said Fido, " that commeth next ?"
" Vetus, vietus, veternosus senex : a wise man ile warrant him, for he can keepe himselfe warme : no friend to the barber it should seeme by his rusticall, overgrowne, and unfinified beard : his gowne is throughly foxt, yet he is sober, for hee looketh as though he quenched his thirst with whay and water rather then with wine and stout beere, and his mandilion edged round about with the stigmaticall Latine word, fur ; a ruffe about his neck, not like a ruffian, but inch broad, with small sets, as if a peece of a tobacco-pipe had beene his poking-stick ; his gloves are thrust under his girdle, that you may see how he rings his fingers, blesse his worship ; now he commeth coughing in."
Opinion of the Extortioner comming to know his fortune.
" He is," said Opinion, "miser qui nummos admiratur ; miserable, or an able miser, which maketh much of money, gold is his god, and silver his saint ; bondes are his bibles, and obligations his horizons ; scriveners are his priests, which doe his service, and cousoning brokers his Christian brethren. Security is his secretarie, and sergeants his serving-men : he liveth by use like a bawde, and dealeth deceitfully, like a cheating gamester ; he is a rare alchimist, which from a little gold or silver wil abstract a million in time : better is / p.103 / a poore gentleman to fall into the pawes of a lion then betweene his clutches, and may with more safety escape the gripe of a she beare then to be released from his leases : to be briefe with him, he is an insatiable cormorant, or rather corne-vorant, a bottomlesse Barathrum, a mercilesse mony-monger, a filthy forty in the hundreth, and unconscionable extortioner."
Fido, his oration to the Extortioner, displaying his damnable
dealing and fortune.
" Father, you are welcome, and without feare or flatterie I will breefely tell you my minde. You have long traffickt in a wicked and unlawfull trade ; wicked, I call it, because it is repugnant to the lawes of the Highest Enacter of all decrees ; unlawfull, I may avouch it, because I never knew, nor heard, of any good law maintaining it ; for the former, if you run over the booke of bookes you shall finde many fearfull judgements denounced against you, and the latter you cannot contradict it by no countrie lawes, which although they flatly denie thee to take above tenne in the hundreth, a veniall sinne in respect of thy capitall, and deadly offence, yet dooth it not authorise thee to take so much, but taxeth thee if thou usurpest any more. But what should I take this text, which hath beene throughly intreated of by better and more judicious then myselfe ? or why should I wast my breath to thee, which hath neither faith, hope, nor charity ? What doe I talke of these thinges to thee, whom the love of riches / p.104 / hath so besotted, that it is impossible to divret it? or how should I thinke to prevaile by disswading : cum te neque fervidus æstus dimoveat lucro, neque hyemps, ignis, mare, ferrum : when neither the parching heate, nor benumbing cold, neither fire, sword, nor sea can disswade.
Impulit amentes aurique cupidine cæcos|
Ire super gladios, super atque cadavera patrum.
Therefore if your future fortune (that is that which shall light upon you hereafter, will not drawe you from your daily practising the same, nothing will), which is this. You shall alwaies want, though you have never so much, semper avarus eget (Hor.) ; though thou art a master, thou shalt be alwaies a servant, moyling for a mite, and watching to save a pennie ; thou shalt live in perpetuall terrour and feare ; shee that lyeth in thy bosome shall make thee suspitious, least she steale from thee ; they which were begotten of thine owne bodie will scarre thee, least they robbe thee : all that looke neere the place where thy gold lyeth thou wilt be jealous of, least they lurke to defeate thee of it : non uxor salvum te vult, non filius, omnes vicini oderunt, noti pueri atque puellæ. Thy wife will wish the hanged, thou keepest her so barely ; thy children pray for thine end, thou maintainest them so basely ; thy neighbours and kinsfolkes speake broadly of thee, thou usest them so cruelly ; and when thou art dead, divels hurry thee to perdition, wishes damme thee to everlasting torments, and cursses consort with thy funerall. Nay, thy wife shall be enamored of some spend-all, which shall wast all / p.105 / as licentiously as thou hast heaped together laboriously : thy children never thrive with ought thou diddest bequeath them, it was so vilely gotten : and thy name either utterly blotted out, or remaine infamous to posterity. If you like your fortune, proceed ; but if you mislike it, desist from your racking and raysing, your powling and pinching the poor ; recompense them which you have wronged, or at the least injury none no more, but doe good according to the quantity of your goods, and so you may bring a blessing to yourselfe and posterity." The extortioner walked aside, and another knocked at the gate.
The Glutton entreth to know his fortune, whom
" Who is next ?" said Fido.
"Monstrum horrendum, informe, ingens : a monstrous man," said Mockso, "your gate is too little for this Grecian horse ; if you cause not part of your wall to be plucked downe, he cannot come in : God bee thanked, hee hath the witte yet to enter sideling, like a gentlewoman with an huge farthingall : how he puffeth and bloweth like a short-winded hackney : now he approacheth wallowing like a woman with childe : he might be an oxe for his joule, a bull for his necke, a cow for his belly, and a calfe for his wit, I make no question."
/ p.106 /Opinion of the Glutton.
" Bona verba, Mockso," said Opinion, "he will hate you to death if he heare you, and worke you a mischiefe, if you misuse him : he is a great man, I can tell you, and in huge request amongst no small fooles : Puago might be his grandfather, for his full feeding ; and Garagantua his sire, for his gormandizing ; he is none of your ordinarie fellowes, which will suffice nature for threepence ; give him an oxe rosted, with a pudding in his belly ; a rabbit is but a bitte with him, and he will crunch capons as fast as a beggar will cracke lice ; he is a tall man at a table, and will tosse a pike strenuously, if it be soaked in white broth ; he is none of your great talkers, but will do prettie well at a dinner, if silence be a vertue ; he is a vertuous gentleman, for at meate hee cannot entend to talke for eating, and betweene meales hee sleepeth soundly. To be briefe with him, he is a pestilence to pasties, which sweepeth many of them sheere away ; a consumption to capons, chickins, and other poultry ; a sepulchre to seafish and others in ponds, moates, and rivers ; a sharp sheepe-biter, and a marveilous mutton monger, a gorbelly glutton.
Fido, his oration to the Glutton, inveying against his sinne,
and revealing his fortune.
" Tantum cibi et potionis adhibendum est, ut reficiantur vires, non ut opprimantur : sir, I salute you with this saying / p.107 / of Cicero, because I perceive you ever ballace your belly, an ungratefull member, never thankefully repaying that which is done unto it, but daily calling for more then is needefull ; and why should man, that hath understanding to judge, and reason to rule, be so servile to filthy appetite ? a small thing will content nature, and satiety doth rather displease then pleasure her ; it maketh her unfitte to performe any agill or active thing : beside, the overplus might tend to many profitable uses, but you cannot fall too unlesse your table bee fully furnished : how did they in the old time, when they were sufficed with such sustenance as the grasse and trees afforded ; they lived longer and were stronger then they of this instant ; they had no cookes to provide them cates ; hunger was their best sawce, labour and exercise the cookes which composed that sawce ; if you would feed with the like sawce, composed by the same cookes, it would take you a button lower, and cause you looke not like Boreas, as you now doe ; if not, I cannot remedie it, neither will I speake to your deafe god, Bell, or rather bellie, anie longer. Your fortune will be this ; manie diseases wil be ingendered in you, through your immoderat eating ; fit for no countrie service will you be, neither in martiall nor domesticall affaires : a foole shall you live, and a dunce shall you die, and that sooner too then otherwise you wold, keeping a sparing and temperate diet : all the pampering of your paunch shall be to no other purpose, for you strive for all delicate creatures to feed yourselfe, and you yourselfe shall be food for the wormes."
Away the Glutton lagged, and Mockso highed to the doore, expecting, that as he was larded, so hee would / p.108 / be garded with some or other ; for rich men have manie friends, and neede not walke alone unlesse they please.
The Parasite, associating the Glutton to the gate, entereth,
Mockso describing him.
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" A finicall fellow," answered Mockso, " as full of salutations as a fidler ; his hat was off before I coulde aske him what he would, and his knee licked the superficies of your threshold, ere I bad him enter ; a crafty fellow I feare, he is so full of courtesie, and some cousoning companion, he hath such a flearing countenance ; now he eieth you, sir, his head is bare. O rare, what an excellent dumb shew is this ! thrise hath he kissed his hand and made you three lowe congies in coming three strides ; now he approacheth neere you ; I thinke he meaneth to make a pope of you, and kiss your toes."
Opinion of the Parasite.
" He is none of your cynicks, nor criticks, hee is no Momus, that snappeth vice by the shinnes as shee passeth by him ; hee respecteth not what men be, so they be rich ; he wil live when they lack : he fleareth not in your face for nothing, nor reflects his legges without some surmised / p.109 / reason ; he will fawne on you like a spaniell, follow you like a foisting hound for his commodity ; say what you wil, hee will sweare to it ; doe what you delight in, hee wil encourage you : are you adicted to drink drunke, he wil gibe at sobriety, and christen her with innumerable nick-names. Doe you love whores ? he wil scratch where it itcheth not, and tickle your eares with a tale of variable venerie : have you one sparkle of goodnesse ? he wil extoll you above measure : have you never so much ill ? he wil mitigate it : he is in tautologies of praising that you like, and extreame in discommending that you doe condemne, be it never so praiseworthie : he giveth nothing his due, or proper right, but either too much, or too little, he careth not for the meane : he wil pervert anie thing for his purpose ; if you be a coward, hee saieth you are wise and trulie valerous : if prodigall, then generouslie liberall : are you a niggard ? then frugall and provident : is your head great ? a note of policie ; is it little ? the loftiest men are so marked : is your nose long ? an excellent ornament, hee knew a great ladie that never commended other : is it short ? it is the comliest : are you high-coloured ? it is the soundest complexion : are you pale ? it is amorous and attractive : are you tall ? all that are lower than you are dwarfes : are you low ? all that are taller are lubbers, or May-poles : to bee briefe with him, he wil soothe you up in anie sinne, hugge anie hainous humor in you, foster anie follie ; wealthie men's wel-wisher, poverties deadlie enemie, a false-hearted, fawning parasite."
Fido, his oration to the Parasite, revealing his faults
/ p.110 /
" Sir," said Fido, " since your disposition is so largelie described, I shall not neede much to delate on it; but to speake freelie and compendiously unto you, I holde you to be the most venemous serpent that crawleth in a commonwealth, and would advise all men that tender their owne safetie to shunne yow as an harpie, and stop their eares at your words, as the enchanting of mermaydes : plus nocet lingua adulatoris, quam gladius persecutoris : your tongue doth more hurt then warre or pestilence, and you are the causer of more mischiefe then any impietie whatsoever ; lulling men in the sleepe of securitie, whereas if they were kept waking, and had their faults laid apparently before them, no doubt but that either shame or feare would worke a reformation in them ; guiltie therefore are you of all those crimes which they commit, and accessarie to their enormities whom you secure and sooth up in follies ; your fortune, therefore, will be full foule in the end, and though you may flourish for a time, and live in favour, yet when your assertions are found false, your friendship fained, your counsell hurtfull unto them, then may you give an ultimum vale to your happinesse : they which loved you wil loath you to death ; they which credited you will not beleeve you for a world, though then you should tell them never so truly : they that graced you wil be the first that shal publish your disgrace, and work your ruine ; because, like a trayterous / p.111 / person, you endevoured theirs by your conceiling their follies, and animating them to any villanie."
Away the parasite sneaked, and another knocked at the gate.
The Wanton Wife entreth to know her fortune,
whom Mockso describeth.
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" A sweete woman, no doubt," answered Mockso, " doe you not smell her ? a rowling eye, she turneth it with a trice ; a faire haire, if it be her owne ; an high forehead, if it be not forced : a rare face, if it be not painted : a white necke, if it be not plastered ; a straight backe, if it be not bolstered ; a slender wast, if it be not pinched ; a prettie foote, if it be not in shooe-maker's laste ; a faire and rare creature, if she be not dishonest."
Opinion of the Wanton Wife.
" O si fas dicere, she came naked into the citie and shal so returne, unlesse she doe penance with a white sheete pinned about her, as she now deserveth. Her husband married her for pure love, and had nought with her, and so hee is likely to have so long as he hath her ; yet shee will flaunt it with the finest, and gadde abroad with the giddiest ; looking for greater attendance then an empresse, and more duty then a / p.112 / dutchesse ; envying all that are more bravely trapped then herselfe, and confederate with few but such as are wantonly intrapped as she is ; no fashion can be extant, but she must have a fling at it ; no sight to be seene, but she must view it ; not a gewgaw to be heard of but she must have it ; she will buy nothing that is cheape, weare nothing that is common, eate nothing that is not costly ; her honest husband is her hobie-horse at home, and abroad, her foole ; amongst her copesmates, wanton wenches game amongst themselves, and wagges sport to point at with two fingers : who is so terrified by her that he were better in his grave ; by day he dare not meet her, she is so man'd with make-shift ; by night hee feareth to lie with her, her touch is so ambiguous : with meat he cannot please her, she is so dainty : in clothes hee cannot keepe her, she is so costly ; with words he cannot fit her, shee is so captious ; in deede hee cannot content her, for shee is a wanton. If he endevour with good counsell to disswade her, she saith he preacheth too learnedly for her to edifie ; if hee gybe and jest at her follie, then he is all wit, or a wittall ; if he keepeth her short of mony, then she rappeth out an oath that she will have coyne, though she be hanged for it : if he keepe her close within doores, the next time he stirreth out a sergeant clappeth him on the shoulder for some debt shee hath entred unknowne to him for such a purpose. To be breefe, she is her husband's affliction, her children's disgrace, her friend's scandall, roysters and rake-hels randevouce ; a wanton, wicked, well-favoured wife."
/ p.113 /Fido, his oration to the Wanton Wife, detecting the heynous-
nesse of her beastly life and fortune.
" Were your minde as richly beautified as your body you could not be too highly prized ; but seeing the beastlinesse of your behaviour blemisheth your beautie, I cannot but condemne and contemne you ; who, having plighted your faith and solemnly obliged yourselfe unto an husband, are now become most faithlesse and perfidious, leaving the fruite which was allotted you fall to the forbidden tree ; which, driving you out of Paradise, will expose you to the infamie of the world ; if you can delude your husband's eyes with demure carriage, and possesse him with a good conceit thereof, then you care not how you cousen him of his goods privily, deride him closely, abuse him behinde his backe, so all bee done caute it is well done : but if you consider the cause aright, it is yourselfe you wrong. There is an eie which seeth you, though never so closely cabined ; there is an eare that heareth you, whisper you never so softly ; there is an heart which apprehendeth you, contrive you never so cunningly, from which, if you cannot conceale your thoughts, wordes, and workes, never laugh in your sleeve how you have gulled, or bulled, your husband : nay, many are so impudent they care not who know it, they thinke it a credite to bee notorious, an honour to have gallants seeke unto them ; where / p.114 / carrion is, it is no marvell to find kites ; pleasure hath an amiable face, but a loathsome bodie ; a sweete taste, but a sowre digestion ; a delicious life, but a miserable death : looke upon that plot in my garden, you see it fresh and fragrant, if I should permit many of my neighbours to fling their garbidge on it, it would become a fulsome dunghil ; or, behold my well, the water in it is cleere and sweete ; if the sinkes here about should have passage to it, they would soone alter the clearenesse and sweetnesse of the water : so now you are sound and lovely to looke on, you may maintaine the same for a small space ; but being common, ulcers, filth, and blauches will breed upon [you] like frogges and toades in stinking pooles. And therefore I cannot blame those which are timerous of their wives, for their owne bodies safetie : one rotten sheepe corrupts a flocke, one measeled hogge smites an heard, one plagued person infects a people. Now to your fortune. If you once loose your good name, you will never recover it ; if now in youth you forsake your husband, and play false, in your age, when none respect you, he will reject you : your children may begge, or steale, wil he toile to maintaine other men's gettings ? If he decease before you, no honest man will have you, unlesse some of your deboshed companions, more for lucre then for love, who will never trust you, knowing you false to your former husband : and then, perchance, you would wish you had beene more constant to your first betrothed, and lesse confident to every cogging companion ; but it will bee then too late. Now lament your follie, and beginne a new life, abandon lewde company and idlenesse, and you / p.115 / may have many a faire day, and future felicity ; else expect nothing but miserie, shame, and many misfortunes in the end, which will fall heavily upon you if you doe not now labour to prevent them."
Away she walked, and another rapped at the gate.
The Jealous Man entereth to know his fortune,
Mockso describing him.
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" One as melancholie as a cat," answered Mockso, " and glared upon me as if he would have looked through me : sure hee lacketh something, he gazeth so about him : holde not downe thine head for shame, like a beast ; but erect thy countenance, like a man. High-ho, how he sigheth, and beteth his brest, as if there were something there angering him. Why doth he feele his forehead so often ? it is smooth enough he doubteth : I lay my life they wil sprowt out shortly, and shal soone become as huge-headed as was Acteon, after hee gazed on the goddesse bathing herselfe with her nymphs in the fountaine."
Opinion of the Jealous Man.
/ p.116 /
" He is more afraid then hurt," said Opinion, " hee macerateth his minde without cause, and troubleth his thoughts without true reason : his wife is faire, therefore hee thinketh her false ; of a wittie disposition, therefore hee deemeth her a wagge-taile : all that speake to her, hee thinketh wooe her, and every man that looketh on her, he judgeth loves her : let her speake him faire, then she faigneth : let her use him dutifully, then she doth counterfet : if she keepeth home, it is volens nolens, against her wil : let her goe abroad, then his head aketh, and his heart panteth : is shee neatly arraied, that is but to allure and please others : is she homely dressed, she knoweth he wil keepe house that day : goe they in the streetes together, if she glanceth but aside, hee knoweth her minde forsooth : courtesie in her is the loadstone of her lust : and affabilitie the cunning orator for her concupiscence : bringeth he any to his table, if she carve to them, it is in hope of some amorous requitall ; if shee drinke to them, their pledgings are but as pledges of their concealed loves : they which proffer him kindnesse, he surmiseth it pretended, for opportunitie to his wife : and they which frequent his house, be they of his neerest alliance or kindred, he suspecteth. To be briefe with him, he is his fortunes fore-staller, his mindes miserie, his bodies bane, a rejecter of his most intimate familiars, a suspitious ill liver ; for the wife would never have sought her daughter in the oven unlesse / p.117 / she herselfe had beene there in former times : an erronious hereticke in the opinion of his wife, an unreasonable and causelesse jealous man."
The Fortune-teller's oration to the Jealous Man, declaring
his folly and fortune.
" Sir, of all men I holde you most senselesse, who, without certaine ground and sure experience, should misconceit that which was never meant you. Cannot your wife be faire, but lascivious ? what say you to Lucretia ? can you not be absent but she will play foule ? how thinke you of Penelope, who, in the tenne yeares absence of her husband, lived chaste and untouched ? but suppose that which you suspect were certaine, sores past cure are past care. Quod factum est, infectum esse nequit : that which is done cannot be undone ; that which will be shall be : if she be chaste and vertuous, no beautie can tempt her, no gifts allure her, no perswasions winne her : but if she be disloyall, keepe her never so close, she will sometime or other flie out in despight of you.
Ut jam servaris bene corpus adultera mens est,|
Nec custodiri ni velit ipsa potest.
" When Jupiter loved Io, a delicious damsell, his wife being mistrustfull, dogged him to finde out his dealing ; who, to conceale his fault, turned the lady into an heifer, which Juno begged, and resigned to the custodie of Argus, who, although he was faigned to have an hundred eies, / p.118 / yet was he beguiled of the jewell he watched so narrowly : so be you never so vigilant and circumspect, if she be so disposed she will. Non caret effectu quod voluere duo : needlesse therefore will your care be if you have no cause ; and although you have good reason, of none effect : naturam expellas furca, licet usque recurret. Now to your fortune ; if you be obstinate in your beleefe, and so confirme in your false faith, you will martir yourselfe most miserably ; your body will be soone wasted, and your substance consumed ; because, when your thoughts are destracted with such frivolous matters, you can never seriously negociate your estates concerning and supporting designes ; your best way, therefore, is to thinke the best, judge the best, et modo te sanum fingito sanis eris."
Away the Jealous Man departed, and another knocked at the gate.
The Lover entering to know his fortune, Mockso
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" I know not," said Mockso, " but he looketh very pittifully upon it, and commeth sadly in ; a finicall fellow he is, and very fashionable : a stiffe necke he hath, which God hateth, and a streight dublet, which no drunkard could endure : for if he had it but one sitting, he would not / p.119 / leave it worth a button ; sure his taylor hath not done well to make it so short wasted : crie him mercie ! now I looke so low, he hath put all the waste in the knees of his breeches ; currage, man ! if she will not, another will."
Opinion of the Lover.
" As simple as he standeth there," said Opinion, " hee hath let his owne arme blood himself instead of a barber-surgeon, and quaffed an health thereof in praise of his mistresse when he had done : hee hath kneeled oftener in the honour of his sweeteheart then his Saviour : hee cruciateth himself with the thought of her, and wearieth al his friends with talking on her : he is trapt in so long contemplation of her heavenly by him surmised beauties, that sometimes missing his appointed meales, oscula dat ligno, he kisseth the post's most daintie face, supposing it his love, and imbraceth his pillow or the ayre in his armes circumference, her bodie being onely imagined present : he maketh her a deietie with his adoration, and extolleth the lustre of her eyes above the sun and moone : he is elivated into the third heaven when he dreameth of her, and will admit no sublunarie resemblances in his comparisons concerning her, though she have a negro's head, a Virginian nose, a Spanish face, a Flemish neck, and a Turkish stature : all the morning he wasteth in finifying his body to please her eye ; all the afternoone he culleth out choice and premeditate speeches to delight her eare ; all supper while, if they table together, he peereth and / p.120 / prieth into the platters to picke out dainty morsels to content her maw ; and almost all the night he watcheth and prayeth for her, sighing like a senselesse beast, and sobbing like a silly sot if he be rivald and put besides her : to be briefe, hee is his friends' pittie, his enemies' derision, his soules sorrow, his bodies decay, and his sweetheart's derision : a forsaken lover."
Fido his oration to the Lover, revealing his fondnes
" By this it seemeth you are in love ; with whom ? a woman : good, what woman ? beauteous, rich, or honourable ? so, how doth she requite your love ? with scorn, hate, derision : she is a woman the contrary to man, as one defineth the greatest pleasure that can betide a man, when he is deprived of her : witnes Galba, who, seeing his neighbour's wife hang herselfe upon a figge tree, desired a slippe thereof to graft, hoping it would beare more such fruite, meaning his wife. The toylsomest burden that combreth a man, as he certified who, when the rest of his companie cast overbord such stuffe as was most combersome unto them, being so commanded by the master of the shippe, tooke his wife in his arms with intent to fling her into the sea, had hee not beene interupted. If, then, a wife be the contrary to an husband, what concord can there be betweene them ? if a pleasure to be lost, who would sigh to be deprived of one ? if a burden and clogge to be kept, who would not skipp / p.121 / for joy to have his clogge taken from him ? But she is beauteous, rich, or honourable : what is beautie with untoward conditions, but a faire flower with an ill favour,—a painted sepulchre fil'd with putrid bones ? what are riches with wayward qualities, but golden mazers fraught with deadly poyson ? and, as the cynick likened a rich man without knowledge, to a sheepe with a golden fleece, so you may resemble a wealthy woman with wilfull manners, to a jade with golden trappings : and what is honour ? a celestiall thing, a radiant starre, you will say ; but those starrs are not all one ; some are fixæ, some errantes, some cadentes, that is, some are fixed, some wandring, some falling starres : but she you admired was none of the fixed, as her wandring and falling from you sheweth : besides, she scorneth, hateth, and derideth you : if any of your best friends should serve you so, you would renounce them, yet you will reverence her, your worst enemie : but men of your mould are like spaniels, which will creepe neerest to them that cudgell them : so the frowarder their sweetehearts are, the frowarder are they to crouch unto them : Quod licet ingratum est, quod non licet acrius urit, whereas being lesse obsequious they might fare better, novi mulierum mores; ubi velis nolunt, ubi nolis capiunt ultro. Some reason had censorius Cato to leave this precept for future times—Trust not a woman ; the dogged philosopher knew causes enough, when he said it was too late for the olde man, and too soone for the young to marrie. Yet I speake not this in disgrace of vertuous women, or to deterre you from marriage : but for a man, the king and commander of al earthly creatures, whose body is pure, / p.122 / whose minde more magnanimous, to be dejected in spirit, pale in physnomy, leane in his limmes, and all for a woman, nay, for such a woman as doth scorne, hate, and deride him : fie, it is intollerable. Were she true and faithfull unto you in lawfull and honest sort, I would kindle and combine you with the best counsell I could : but being otherwise, take these precepts, which, if you follow, will allay all lust and love in you : the first is, to abandon idlenesse, the nurse of wantonnes : the second, shunne solitarinesse, and bee eyther doing something, or discoursing and passing the time away in company : the third, to have a good conceit of yourselfe, to cheere up your spirits, and doubt not but to have her betters : the fourth is, to mince and extenuate any laudable part in her, but to display and augment whatsoever deformity you know by her, for love is feigned blinde, because he cannot judge aright, but maketh a mountain of a mole-hill, a saint of a sow : the best course, therefore, to banish him is, to contrarie him in all his asseverations, to prise at a low rate that he highly vallueth. As for instance, is the partie fatte ? fatte meate will cloy any man : is she leane ? what good stomacke careth for bones ? if she be pale of complexion, she will prove but a puler : is she high-coloured ? an ill cognizance : is she silent ? the still sow will eat up all the draugh : dooth shee talke much ? a pratling gossip she is likely to prove, and who would be troubled with a tatling tongue, and such like ? Fifthly, if shee useth you hardly either in words or deeds, or countenanceth any of your enemies or evill willers, set it downe in your table-bookes, and write it upon the wal in your bed-chamber, that you may / p.123 / at al times better remember them : and consider if she tendered you, she wold not wrong you. Many more could I expresse, but I should be over-tedious : therefore to your fortune, which now is bad enough, neither would I wish any worse, though I should wish them hanged, for hanging is the end of care, but love the enterance : but what will be hereafter, that is as your choise is : if you be advised, hope the best, if not looke for crooked fortune, as well as some of your betters have had before you."
Away the lover walked, and another came to the gate.
The Virgin entereth to know her fortune, Mockso
" Who is that ?" said Fido.
" Diana, or one of her darlings," he replied. " I am perplexed with her proportion ; the very glimse of her hath amazed me. Beauty sitteth enthronized on her browes, modesty in her eies, health in her cheekes, silence on her tongue, balsamum in her breath, immaculation on her necke, temperance on her waste, comelinesse on her whole body : Cytherea may sigh at her portraiture, Delia blush at her behaviour : her lookes turne not to and fro ; her speech is not obstreperous ; no pride in her apparell, no affectation in her gate ; the map of modestie, and picture of purenesse.
/ p.124 /Opinion of the Virgin.
" Rem tenes," said Opinion ; " now you have laid gibing aside, you have eased me of a labour. A purblinde wit may perceive what she is : an immaculate virgin."
The Fortune-tellers oration to the Virgine, encouraging her
to chastitie, and shewing her fortune.
" Amiable maid, which hitherto hast led a chast and unpolluted life, persever still as you have begun, and make no doubt but to be right happy, being enriched with so inestimable a jewell as chastitie, which is a cœlestiall beatitude, the sister of the angels, the conqueresse of concupiscence, the queene of vertues, although it vouchsafeth to inhabit the minde and body of you an earthly creature : seeing therefore it is such an inestimable jewell, how warily are you to keepe it ! such a peerlesse princesse, how loyally are you to love it ! such a victorious triumpher, how carefully are you to guard it ; so unmatchably allied, how much are you to make of it ! All which that you may the better effect, I will bestowe this flower upon you : it is a lilly, not naturall but artificially composed, like to a naturall lilly, having sixe silver leaves, containing sixe severall posies, to preserve your chastitite : the first whereof hath this posie engraven in it : Cibi et potus sobrietas: that is, temperance in eating and drinking, which is an efficient cause to quelle and conquer / p.125 / wantonnesse : whereas, exercise of both or either of them doth animate and make it rebellious, and also disfigure the party pleased with the same : for immoderate eating breedeth five blemishes in the behaviour of a virgine, which do deforme her reputation more then fifteene wheales or pimples would disgrace her face : the first is scurrility of speech, a naughtie thing in any : the second talkativeness, or much babling : the third a foolish joy or petulant kinde of gesture : the fourth vomiting, belching, or such like : the fifth, drowsinesse of body, and dulnesse of minde : which although they are slightly observed in others, yet are they sooner marked in a maiden, as blacke spots are easier espied in a white cloath, then in darke coloured vestures. Touching inordinate drinking of wine, all are forbidden it, but you especially of all others : virgo fugiat vinum ut venenum: nam vinum in adolescentia est duplex incendium voluptatis: that is, a virgine ought to reject wine, as poison, which is a twofold firebrand to kindle lust in youth : abstinence therefore is the first weapon to defend chastitie, and put the enemie to flight ; which, as it is comely in any presence, so it is commodious for any feminine personage : keeping them from fogginesse, grosnesse, and fiery faces ; as one said of virgins in his time, they pinch their bellies of meate, (a good custome,) that they might be as small as bull-rushes.
The second leafe of this lilly hath engraven in it, Asperitas vestitus, that is, coarsenesse and plainenesse of apparrell : for garish and fantasticall cloathes are speechlesse reporters of wanton mindes : therefore, said one, which had some trafique with such light stuffe, that sumptuous and soft raiments were the / p.126 / ensignes of pride ; but light and loose cloathing the index of luxurie. And as in olde time, such as solde horses were wont to put flowers or boughes upon their heads, to reveale that they were vendible : so such as trim and trick themselves with toyes and gewgawes, shew that they are willing, if any will : let therefore your apparell be plaine, yet comely, which will stop the mouth of evill report ; and as course as you can indure it, if you meane to tame your lust. The third leafe is set downe, Laboris strenuitas: labour and exercise, for if your minde be busied about any good huswifrie, or setled seriously upon any honest exercise, lust can have no power over you ; therefore wee reade . . . Penelope, a constant lady, would carde and . . . wooll herselfe, least shee should be idle, and consequently, subject to lascivious thoughts and deedes in the tenne yeeres absence of her husband : and the vestals, if at any time they had let the fire on the altar goe out, they were enjoyned to kindle it againe with the beames of the sunne. In the fourth leafe, is printed Custodia sensuum: that is, not to give your senses any scope or liberty, especially the sight or hearing, for iniquitie through the eye-lids glideth into the heart, and any have been entrapped by giving audience to the alluring songs of the sirens. In the fifth leafe, Modestia verborum: modest words you must use ; qualis homo, talis oratio, such as the woman is, such are her words ; for a proud woman will be rapping arrogant words, a foolish woman fond words, a wanton woman lascivious words, but a chast woman modest words and few. Therefore, said a grave father, that the speech of a virgine ought to be wise, civill, slow, and sparing : that she might be / p.127 /
accounted as excellent for her speech, as for her chastity : for evill words corrupt good manners. In the sixth and last leafe of this lilly, is written, Fuga opportunitatem, the eschewing of opportunity, to shunn the company and conversation of men : for, albeit I am a man myselfe, and shall be reputed foolish to bewray mine owne neast ; yet to benefit such a goodly creature as yourselfe, whom it were villany to injure, I will display the practises of some, though all use not the same, that you may take heed of any, that would goe about to rifle you of your deerest jewell, without lawe or honestie, I meane marriage. Men, generally, are wiser then women in goodnesse, yet are they sillier in wickednesse and contriving deceit then craftie and sensuall women : and as they are more simple then craftie women, so are they subtiller then well-minded maydens, who, as they are guiltlesse of effecting deceipt, so are they innocent of suspecting deceipt.
" It is no glory, I confesse, to deceive a woman ; no point of valour to overthrow the weaker vessell, yet if this weaker vessell be artificially garnished, and naturally beautified, what labour will they not take to attaine it ? what watching will they omit to steale it ? what wealth will they spare for to compasse it ? and when they have gotten it into their custody, how do some of them esteeme it ? even as children gewgaws, to dandle and play with it a while ; but as soone as they eye a new devise, they cast away the olde, and never are in quiet, till they be fingering the newe, or as warriours of olde time, which did spend much cost and paines to take a citie, and when they had brought it into subjection, rifled it, and ransackt it ; marched to another, and so to a thirde, etc. / p.128 / There was a pure virgine, as I heard, dwelling not farre from me, who had so firmely devoted herselfe to chastity, that the inhabitants thereabout did admire her ; till a lustie gallant, rich and well proportioned, wooed her, who never left battering the bulwarke of her heart with piercing oathes, vowes, and protestations, darted from his smooth tongue, till he had almost brought her to the bay. Within a while, after she had considered his actions, how hee would teare his haire, weepe in most seeming sadnesse, kisse her hand with feare and trembling, and proffer, unrequested, many servile ceremonies, fearing herselfe to breake an oath or violate a vow, trusted that hee had the same feare in him, which hee had not, condescended to his desire ; which so soone as hee had accomplished, forsooke her utterly. After him another came unto her, and served her with the same sawce ; then a third : at last she began to wax warie : a fourth came unto her, whose fashion was to try all, and if they agreed, left them incontinently ; but hee laboured in vaine, for his gifts could prevaile nothing, nor his promises perswade her ; (shee had faire warning, one would thinke) ; to be briefe, he liked, loved, and married her, and the second night, as they lay together, the good man said to her, 'Thou knowest, sweetheart, how often I tempted thee, and I protest, if thou haddest consented, I had forsaken thee utterly.' 'Tut, tut, husband,' said shee, (sure shee was halfe asleepe and halfe waking,) 'I trow I was a little wiser then so, for three had served me in the like sort before ever I beheld your face.'
" This I do not relate, that you should make the same experiment, but that you might avoid the like men, for he / p.129 / that maketh no scruple to breake the seventh commandement, will make as little conscience to keepe the third : besides, if he should keepe his promise, he would have you alwaies in jealousie : for if you feare not to displease God before you are married, who forbiddeth fornication, will not your husband be perswaded that you will have as little feare to commit adulterie when you are espoused ? Take this lilly, and think upon every word and posie engraven in it : and above all, beleeve not words im . . . . ing any dishonest request. I have a picture here, to the same purpose : looke upon this lady, it was Dido, queene of Carthage, who being too credulous in beleeving a wandering prince, fell to folly with him, and after forsaken, caused a great fire to be made, and for griefe and anguish leaped into it. This other is Phillis, queene of Rodope, a virgin before she lent an attentive eare to Demophoon, a man of royall race, who after he had gotten his purpose, never returned neere her againe ; so that for shame, and avoiding future sorrow, she hung herselfe, as this picture lively expresseth : take it with you, and think that if these two queenes were deceaved, it were an hazard for to trust. Fide, sed cui vide: it is an old saying, trie before you trust : but if maydens follow that saying, they may be trust round before, and after served as these were."
Away the virgine walked, like Juno in the empire, and others were at the gate expecting entrance, but Fido beeing weake and wearie, dismissed them till some other time, and forthwith committed hisselfe to his closet.