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I cannot eat but little meat
My stomach is not good;
With him that wears a hood.
I nothing am a cold,
skin so full within
go But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
Whether it be new or old.
I love no roast but a nut-brown toast,
And a crab laid in the fire;
Much bread I nought desire.
Can hurt me if I wold,
Of jolly good ale and old. Back and side, &c.
And Tib, my wife, that as her life
Loveth well good ale to seek, Full oft drinks she, till ye may see
The tears run down her cheek: Then doth she troul to me the bowl,
Even as a malkworm should, And saith,“ Sweetheart, I took my part
“ Of this jolly good ale and old." Back and side, &c.
Now let them drink till they nod and wink,
Even as good fellows should do; They shall not miss to have the bliss
Good ale doth bring men to. And all poor souls that have scoured bowls,
Or have them lustily trould, God save the lives of them and their wives,
Whether they be young or old. Back and side, &c.
In the new edition of “ Phillips's Theatrum Poetarum,” this
author is said to have been a surgeon at Maidstone in Kent, and to have written many tracts on the subject of his profession. Besides his Court of Virtue, he published, in 1550, “ Certain chapters taken out of the Proverbs of Solomon, “ &c. &c." His birth may perhaps be placed about 1520.
THE COURT OF VIRTUL.
The just and true man complaineth that flattery and
falsehood are more regarded than truth, and rejoiceth that he is hated for the truth.
IF Truth may take no trusty hold,
Nor cleave so fast as flattering sense,
For then is gone all sure defence.
If meaning well may take no place,
Nor dealing just have no regard,
To feign such things as may be heard.
Shall virtue dwell in such disdain ?
And honesty be had in hate?
Or else remain in vile estate.
But, if there be none other way,
To purchase favour and good-will, Better it were, I dare well say,
In vile estate to tarry still.
Yet if wisdom were nobleness,
As noble birth and riches is,
And flattery should of favour miss.
« Blamed but not shamed,” the proverb is,
And truth can have none other wrong: So may they hap their mark to miss,
That think themselves in falsehood strong.
Then hated, lo, I must rejoice,
And fond-regard despise as vain: Closing my mouth, stopping my voice
From speech in presence of disdain.
Named “ Blame not my Lute;" which under that
title toucheth, replieth, and rebuketh, the wicked state and enormities of most people in these present miserable days.
BLAME not my lute, though it do sound
The rebuke of your wicked sin;
To know what case that ye are in.
If my lute blame the covetise,
The gluttons, and the drunkards vile,
And how falsehood doth truth exile :
Blame not my lute.
Though wrong in justice' place be set,
Committing great iniquity,
That maintain still idolatry,