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Homer of Moly, and Nepenthe sings,
Moly the Gods most sovereign herb divine;
Nepenthe Hekens drink with gladness brings,
Heart's grief expels, and doth the wits refine.
But this our age another world hath found,
From whence an herb of heavenly power is brought,
Moly is not so sovereign for a wound,
Nor hath Nepenthe so great wonders wrought.
It is tobacco, whose sweet substantial fume,
The hellish torment of the teeth doth ease,
By drawing down, and drying up the rheum,
The mother and the nurse of each disease.
It is tobacco which doth cold expel,
And clears the obstructions of the arteries,
And surfeits threat'ning death digesteth well,
Decocting all the stomach's crudities.
It is tobacco which hath power to clarify,
The cloudy mists before dimn eyes appearing,
It is tobacco, which hath power to rarify
The thick gross humour which dotlı stop the hearing,
The wasting hectic and the quartan fever,
Which doth of physic make a mockery:
The gout it cures, and helps ill breaths for ever,
Whether the cause in teeth or stomach be:
And though ill breaths, were by it but confounded,
Yet that medicine it doth far excel,
Which by Sir Thomas Moore hath been propounded,
For this is thought a gentleman-like smell.
O that I were one of these mountebanks,
Which praise their oils, and powders which they sell,
My customers would give me coin with thanks!
I for this ware, forsooth a tale would tell;
Yet would I use none of these terms before,
I would but say, that it the pox will cure;
This were enough, without discoursing more,
All our brave gallants in the town t'allure.
IN CRASSUM. 37.
Crassus's lies are not pernicious lies,
But pleasant fictions, hurtful unto none
But to himself, for no man counts him wise,
To tell for truth, that which for false is known.
He swears that Caunt is threescore miles about,
And that the bridge at Paris on the Seine,
Is of such thickness, length and breadth, throughout,
That six-score arches can it scarce sustain :
He swears he saw so great a dead man's scull,
At Canterbury digged out of the ground,
That would contain of wheat three bushels full,
And that in Kent are twenty yeomen found,
Of which the poorest every year dispends
Five thousand pound: these and five thousand moe,
So oft he hath recited to his friends,
That now himself persuades himself 'tis so.
But why doth Crassus tell his lies so rife,
Of bridges, towns, and things that have no life :
He is a lawyer, and doth well espy,
That for such lies an action will not lie.
Philo the lawyer and the fortune-teller,
The school-master, the midwife and the bawd,
The conjurer, the buyer and the seller
Of painting which with breathing will be thaw'd,
Doth practise physic, and his credit grows,
As doth the ballad-singer's auditory,
Which hath at Temple Bar his standing chose,
And to the vulgar sings an ale-house story.
First stands a porter, then an oyster wife
Doth stint her cry, and stay her steps to hear him,
Then comes a cutpurse ready with a knife,
And then a country client passeth near him :
There stands the constable, there stands the whore, And harkening to the song, mark not each other; There by the serjeant stands the debtor poor,
And doth no more mistrust him than his brother: Thus Orpheus to such hearers giveth music, And Philo to such patients giveth physic.
Fuscus is free, and hath the world at will,
Yet in the course of life that he doth lead,
He's like a horse which turning round a mill,
Doth always in the self-same circle tread :
First he doth rise at ten, and at eleven
He goes to Gill's, where he doth eat till one ;
Then sees he a play till six, and sups at seven,
And after supper, straight to bed is gone.
And there till ten next day be doth remain,
Aud then he dines, then sees a comedy;
And then he sups, and goes to bed again,
Thus round he runs without variety :
Save that sometimes he comes not to the play,
But falls into a whore-house by the way.
IN AFRUM. 40.
The small feast after, travels to the Burse
Twice every day the flying news to hear,
Which when he hath no money in his purse,
To rich men's tables he doth often bear:
He tells how Gronigen is taken in,
By the brave conduct of illustrious Vere;
And how the Spanish forces Brest would win,
But that they do victorious Norris fear.
No sooner is a ship at sea surprised,
But straight he learns the news and doth disclose it;
Fair written in a scroll he hath the names,
Of all the widows which the plague hath made;
And persons, times and places, still he frames,
To every tale, the better to persuade:
We call him fame, for that the wide-mouth slave,
Will eat as fast as he will utter lies;
For Fame is said an hundred mouths to have,
And he eats more than would five score suffice.
By lawful mart, and by unlawful stealth,
Paul's in spite of envy fortunate,
Derives out of the oceans so much wealth,
As he may well maintain a lord's estate :
But on the land a little gulf there is,
Wherein he drowneth all the wealth of his.
Lycus which lately is to Venice gone,
Shall if he do return, gain three for one :
But ten to one, his knowledge and his wit,
Will not be bettered or increased a whit.'
Publius, student at the common law,
Oft leaves his books, and for his recreation,
To Paris garden doth himself withdraw,
Where he is ravished with such delectation
As down amongst the bears and dogs he goes ;
Where whilst he skipping cries to head, to head,
His sattin doublet and his velvet hose,
Are all with spittle from above be-spread.
When he is like his father's country hall,
Stinking with dogs, and muted all with hawks;
And rightly too on him this filth doth fall,
Which for such filthy sports his books forsakes;
Leaving old Plowden, Dyer and Brooke alone,
To see old Harry Hunkes and Sacarson.