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all the gentlemen heard him; did he not, gentle Mrs. Mer. Hark, my husband! he's singing men? did not Ralph tell him on't?'

and hoiting;and I'm fain to cark? and care, George. Right courteous and raliant Knight of and all little enough. – Husband ! Charles ! the Burning Pestle, here is a distressed damsel, to Charles Merrythought! have a halfpenny-worth of pepper.

Enter Old MERRYTHOUGHT. • Wife. That's a good boy! See, the little boy can hit it. By my troth, it's a fine child.'

Mer. (Singizg. ) Nutmegs and ginger, cinnamon and Ralph. Relieve her with all courteous language.

cloves: Now shut up shop; no more my 'prentice, but

And they gave me this jolly red nose. My trusty squire and dwarf. I must bespeak Mrs. Jer. If you would consider your state, My shield, and arming Pestle.

you would have little lust to sing. I wiş. Cit. Go thy ways, Ralph! As I am a true Jer. It should never be considered, while it man, thou art the best on 'em all.

were an estate, if I thought it would spoil my • Wife. Ialph, Ralph!

singing Ralph. What say you, mistress?

Jlrs. Jler. But how wilt thou do, Charles ? Wife. I pr’ythee come again quickly, sweet Thou art an old man, and thou canst not work, Ralph.

and thou hast not forty shillings left, and thou Ralph. By and by.'

[Exit. eatest good meat, and drinkest good drink, and


Jer. And will do.

Jrs. Jer. But how wilt thou come by it,


Jer. How? Why, how have I done hitherto

these forty years? I never came into my diningEnter JASPER and Mrs. MERRYTHOUGHT.

room, but, at eleven and six o'clock,3 I found Mrs. Mer. Give thee my blessing? No, I'll excellent meat and drink o'th' table; my clothes ne'er give thee my blessing; I'll see thee hang'd were never worn out, but next morning a tailor first; it shall ne'er be said I gave thee my bless brought me a new suit; and without question it ing. Thou art thy father's own son, of the right will be so ever! Use makes perfectness; if all blood of the Merrythoughts; I may curse the time should fail, it is but a little straining myself extrathat e'er I knew iby father; he hath spent all his ordinary, and laugh myself to death. own, and mine too; and when I tell him of it, he • Wife. It's a foolish old man this; is not he, laughs, and dances, and sings, and cries, 'A merry George? heart lives long-a.' And thou art a wastethrift,

Cit. Yes, conyand art run away from thy master, that loved • Wife. Give me a penny i th' purse while I thee well, and art come to me, and I have laid live, George. up a little for my younger son Michael, and thou Cit. Ay, by'r lady, cony, hold thee there! think'st to 'bezzle that, but thou shalt never be Mrs. der. Well, Charles, you promised to proable to do it.

vide for Jasper, and I have laid up for Michael. Enter MICHAEL,

I pray you pay Jasper his portion; he's come

home, and he shall not consume Michael's stock. Come hither, Michael; come, Michael ; down on

He says his master turned him away, but I prothy knees: thou shalt have my blessing.

mise you truly I think he ran away. Mich. [kneels.] I pray you, mother, pray to Wife. No, indeed, Mistress Merrythought, God to bless me!

though he be a notable gallows, yet i'll assure Mrs. Mer. God bless thee! but Jasper shall

you his master did turn him away, even in this never have my blessing; he shall be hanged first place; 'twas, i'faith, within this half-hour, about shall he not, Michael? How say'st thou?

his daughter; my husband was by. Mich. Yes, forsooth, mother, and grace of God.

Cit. Hang him, rogue! he served him well Mrs. Mer. That's a good boy!

enough. Love his master's daughter? By my • Wife. l'faith, it's a fine spoken child !'

troth, cony, if there were a thousand boys, thou Jasp. Mother, though you forget a parent's love, wouldst spoil them all, with taking their parts; I must preserve the duty of a child.

let his mother alone with him. I ran not from my master, nor return

• Wife. Ay, George, but yet truth is truth.' To have your stock maintain my idleness.

Ver. Where is Jasper? he's welcome, however. • Wife. Ungracious child, I warrant him! hark,

Call him in; he shall have his portion. Is he how he chops logic with his mother. Thou hadst merry ? best tell her she lies; do, tell her she lies.

Mis. Mer. Ay, foul chive 4 him, he is too merry. Cit. If he were my son, I would hang him up Jasper! Michael! by the heels, and flay him, and salt him, whoreson halter-sack !!!

Enter Jasper and MICHAEL Jasp. My coming only is to beg your love, Mer. Welcome, Jasper! though thou runn'st Which I must ever, though I never gain it;

a way, welcome!

God bless thee! 'Tis thy And, howsoever you esteem of me,

mother's mind thou shouldst receive thy portion : There is no drop of blood hid in these veins, thou hast been abroad, and I hope last learn'il But I remember well belongs to you,

experience enough to govern it; thou art of suffiThat brought me forth, and would be glad for you cient years; hold thy hand: one, two, three, four, To rip them all again, and let it out.

Mrs. Jer. l'faith, I had sorrow enough for theo (God knows), but I'll hamper thee well enough.

1 hoiting. To hoił is to caper, to indulge in riotous Get thee in, thou vagabond, get thee in, and learn and noisy mirth. We still speak of a hoity-toity person. of thy brother Michael.


? cark-care. Mer. (Singing within.) Nose, nose, jolly red nose, 3 These were the dinner and supper hours in our And who gave thcc this jolly red nose?

author's time.

* chire. Weber thinks this may be a Somersetshiro

contraction for shall hare him. However, it may be 1 haller-sack--gallows-bird.

connected with cheran, to run away precipitately.


five, six, seven, eight, nine, there is ten shillings Hum. Right worshipful, and my beloved friend for thee; thrust thyself into the world with that, And father dear, this matter's at an end. and take some settled,course. If Fortune cross Vent. 'Tis well; it should be so: I'm glad tho thee, thou hast a retiring place; come home to girl me; I have twenty shillings left. Be a good Is found so tractable. husband; that is, wear ordinary clothes, eat the Hum. Nay, she must whirl best meat, and drink the best drink; be merry, From hence (and you must wink; for so, I say, and give to the poor, and, believe me, thou hast The story tells) to-morrow before day. no end of thy goods.

Wife. George, dost thou think in thy conJasp. Long may you live free from all thought science now 'twill be a match ? tell me but what of ill,

thou think'st, sweet rogue. Thou seest the poor And long have cause to be thus merry still! gentleman(dear heart!) how it labours and throbs, But, father

I warraut you, to be at rest. I'll go move the Mer. No more words, Jasper; get thee gone! | father fort. Thou hast my blessing; thy father's spirit upon • Cit. No, no; I pr’ythee sit still, honeysuckle; thee! Farewell, Jasper!

thou'lt spoil all. If he deny him, I'll bring half

a dozen good fellows myself, and in the shutting But yet, or ere you part (oh, cruel!) Kiss me, kiss me, sweeting, mine own dear jewel!

of an evening knock it up, and there's an end.

• Wife. I'll buss thee for that, i'faith, boy! So; now begone; no words! [Exit JASPER. Well, George, well, you have been a wag in your

Mrs. Mer. So, Michael; now get thee gone too. days, I warrant you; but God forgive you, and

Mich. Yes, forsooth, mother; but I'll have my I do with all my heart.' father's blessing first.

Vent. How was it, son? you told me that toMrs. Mer. No, Michael ; 'tis no matter for his blessing; thou hast my blessing; be gone.

I'll Before day-break, you must convey her hence. fetch my money and jewels, and follow thee. I'll Hum. I must, I must; and thus it is agreed: stay no longer with him, I warrant theo.—Truly, Your daughter rides upon a brown-bay steed, Charles, I'll be gone too.

I on a sorrel, which I bought of Brian, Mer. What! you will not?

The honest host of the red roaring Lion, Mrs. Mer. Yes, indeed will I.

In Waltham situate. Then if you may,

Consent in seemiy sort; lest by delay, Mer. [Sings.] Hey-ho, farewell, Nan!

The fatal sisters come, and do the office, I'll never trust wench more again, if I can.

And then you'll sing another song. Mrs. Mer. You shall not think (when all

Vent. Alas,

your own is gone) to spend that I have been scraping Why should you be thus full of grief to me, up for Michael.

That do as willing as yourself agree Mer. Farewell, good wife! I expect it not; all

To anything, so it be good and sair? I have to do in this world, is to bo merry; which

Then steal her when you will, if such a pleasure I shall, if the ground bo not taken from me; aud

Content you both; I'll sleep and never see it, if it be,


To make your joys more full. But tell me why

You may not here perform your marriage ? When earth and seas from me are reft,

• Wife. God's blessing o' thy soul, old man! The skies aloft for me are left.

[Exeunt. I'faith, thou art loath to part true hearts. I see

a' has her, George; and I'm as glad on't!— Well,

go thy ways, Humphrey, for a fair-spoken man ; • Wife. I'll be sworn he's a merry old gentle; walls of London; an I should say the suburbs

I believe thou hast not thy fellow within the man, for all that. Hark, hark, husband, bark! fiddles, fiddles! [Music.] Now surely they go

too, I should not lie. Why dost not rejoice with finely. They say 'tis present death" for these me, George? fiddlers to tune their rebecks' before the great

"Cit. If I could but see Ralph again, I were as Turk's grace; is't not, George! [Boy danceth.] | merry as mine host, i'faith.' Bnt look, look! here's a youth dances! Now,

Ilum. Tho cause you seem to ask, I thus

declare : good youth, do a turn o' th' toe. Sweetheart, i faith i'll have Ralph come and do some of his (Help me, oh, muses nino!) Your daughter gambols; he'll ride the wild-mare, gentlemen, 'twould do your hearts good to see him. I thank

A foolish oath, the moro it was the pity; you, kind youth; pray, bid Ralph come.

Yet no ono but myself within this city Cit

. Peace, cony !-Sirrah, you scurvy boy, Shall dare to say so, but a bold defiance bid the players send Ralph; or, by God's wounds,

Shall meet him, were ho of the noble science. an they do not, I'll tear some of their periwigs And yet she sware, and yet why did she swear?

Truly I cannot tell, unless it were beside their heads; this is all riff-raff.'

For her own ease; for sure sometimes an oath,
Being sworn thereafter, is like cordial broth:
And this it was she swore, never to marry,
But such a one whose mighty arm could carry

(As meaning me, for I am such a one)

ìler bodily away, through stick and stone,

Till both of us arrive at her request, A Room in the House of VENTERWELS. Some ten miles off, in the wild Waltham Forest.

Vent. If this be all, you shall not need to fear Enter VEXTERWELS and Master HUMPHREY.

Any denial in your love: proceed; Vent. And how, i'faith, how goes it now, son

I'll neither follow, nor repent the deed. Humphrey ?

Hum. Good night, twenty good nights, and

twenty more,

And twenty more good nights, that makes three1 A rebeck was an instrument of three strings some

score ! what like a modern fiddle.




Ralph. Lace on my helm again! What noise is ACT II.-SCENE II.


A gentle lady, flying the embrace
Night. Waltham Forest.

Of some uncourteous kinght? I will relieve her. Enter Mrs. MERRYTHOUGHT and MICHAEL.

Go, squire, and say, the knight that wears this

Pestle Mrs. Mer. Come, Michael ; art thou not weary,

In honour of all ladies, swears revenge boy?

Upon that recreant coward that pursues her; Mich. No, forsooth, mother, not I.

Go, comfort her, and that same gentle squiro Mrs. Mer. Where be we now, child ?

That bears her company: Mich. Indeed, forsooth, mother, I cannot tell,

Tim. I go, brave knight. unless we be at Mile-Eud. Is not all the world Ralph. My trusty dwarf and friend, reach me Milo-End, mother?

my shield; Mrs. Mer. No, Michael, not all the world, boy; And hold it while I swear: First, by my knightbut I can assure thee, Michael, Mile-End is a

hood; goodly matter. There has been a pitchfield, my

Then by the soul of Amadis de Gaul, child, between the naughty Spaniels and the Eng. My famous ancestor; then by my sword, lishmen; and the Spaniels ran away, Michael,

The beauteous Brionella girt about mo; and the Englishmen followed. My neighbour By this bright burning Pestle, of mine honour Coxstone was there, boy, and killed them all

The living trophy; and by all respect with a birding-piece.

Due to distressed damsels, here I vow Mich. Mother, forsooth!

Never to end the quest of this fair lady, Mrs. Mer. What says my white? boy?

And that forsaken squire, till by my valour Mich. Shall not my father go with us too ?

I gain their liberty !

[Exit. Mrs. Mer. No, Michael, let thy father

Geo. Heaven bless the knight snick

go up, he shall never come between a pair of sheets That thus relieves poor errant gentlewomen! with me again, while he lives ; let him stay at

[Erit. home and sing for his supper, boy.-Come, child,

'Wife. Ay marry, Ralph, this has some savour sit down, and I'll show my boy fine knacks, in- in't; I would see the proudest of them all offer to deed. [Takes out a casket. Look here, Michael;

carry his books after him. But, George, I will here's a ring, and here's a brooch, and here's a

not have him go away so soon; I shall be sick bracelet, and here's two rings more, and here's if he go away, that I shall. Call Ralph again, money and gold, by th' eye, my boy!

George, call Ralph again; I pr’ythoe, sweet tebart, Mich. Shall I have all this, mother?

let him come fight before me, and let's ha' some Mrs. Mer, Ay, Michael, thou shalt have all, drums, and some trumpets, and let him kill all Michael.

that comes Dear him, an thou lov'st me, George! "Cit. How lik'st thou this, wench?

Cit. Peace a little, bird! He shall kill them Wife. I cannot tell; I would have Ralph, all, an they were twenty more on 'em than thoro George; I'll see no more else, indeed-la; and I are.' pray you let the youths understand so much by

Enter JASPER. word of mouth; for I tell you truly, I'm afraid o' my boy. Come, come, George, let's be merry and Show me thy better face, and bring about

Jasp. Now, Fortune (if thou be'st not only ill), wise ; the child's a fatherless child, and say they Thy desperate wheel, that I may climb at length, should put bim into a strait pair of gaskins,

And stand ; this is our place of meeting, 'twere worse than knot-grass;s he would never

If love bave any constancy. O age, grow after it.

Where only wealthy men are counted happy! Enter RALPH, TIM, and GEORGE.

How shall I please thee, how deserve thy smiles, 'Cit. Here's Ralph, here's Ralph.

When I ain only rich in misery?
Wife. How do you, Ralph? you are welcome, Is my inheritauce; a strong revenue !

My father's blessing, and this little coin,
Ralph, as I may say. It's a good boy! hold up
thy head, and be not afraid ; we are thy friends, There grow and multiply, whilst freshur air

From earth thou art, and to the earth I give theo: Ralph. The gentlemen will praise thee, Ralph, Breeds me a fresher fortune.-How! illusion! if thou play'st thy part with audacity. Begin,

[Spies the casket. Ralph, a' God's name!' Ralph. My trusty squire, unlace my helm; give 'Tis

metal good: it rings well; I am waking:

What! hath the devil coin'd himself besore me? me my hat.

And taking too, I hope. Now, God's dear blessing Where are we, or what desert may this be?

Upon his heart that left it bere! 'tis mine ; George. Mirror of knighthood, this is, as I take it, the perilous Waltliam Down, in whose bottom

These pearls, I take it, were not loft for swine. stands the enchanted valley.

[Ezil. Mrs. Mer. Oh, Michael, we are betrayed, we

• Wife. I do not like that this unthrifty youth

should embezzle away the money; the poor are betrayed! here be giants! Fly, boy, tly, boy, gentlewoman his mother will have a heavy fly! (Exit with MICHAEL, leaving the casket.

heart for it, God knows.

Cit. And good reason, sweetheart,

• Wife. But let him go. I'll tell Ralph a tale 1 There has been a pitchfield, &c. This must relate to in's ear, shall fetch him again with a waunion,' I ! some mock fight which was fought at Mile-End, where the train-bands of the city were often exercised. - George, here are a number of sufficient gentlewes

warrant him, if he be above ground; and besides, WEBER.

2 white was then a common term of endearment. can witness, and myself, and yourself, and tho 3 snick-up or sneck-up-hang himself, gaskins, gascoynes, or galliguskins, generally denoted wide hose, but was also used generally for trousers; the 1 with a wannion–3 common proverbial expression, article is supposed to have been introduced from Gas the precise meaning of which bas never bred explained

Nares thuks it is equivalent to with a veryxxnx, or kit s knot-grass was anciently supposed to prevent the a plaque, and to be derived from Anglo-Saxon Saw growth of a child.

detriment, or wuneun, to bewall.



musicians, if we be call'd in question. But here Luce. 'Faith, an' you say the word, we'll e'en comes Ralph; George, thou shalt hear himn speak And take a nap.

[sit down, an' he were an emperal.'

Hum. 'Tis better in the town,

Where we may nap together; for, believe me,

To sleep without a snatch would micklegrieve me. Ralph. Comes not Sir Squire again?

Luce. You're merry, Master Humphrey. Geo. Right courteous kuight,

Hum. So I am, Your squire doth come, and with him comes the And have been ever merry from my dam. lady.

Luce. Your nurse had the less labour.

Hum. 'Faith, it may be,
Enter Mrs. MERRYTHOUGHT, MICHAEL, and TIM. Unless it were by chance I did bewray me.
Ralph. Fair! and the Squire of Damsels as I

Madam, if any service or devoir

(take it! Of a poor errant-knight may right your wrongs, Jasp. Luce! dear friend Luce! Command it; I am prest' to give you succour;

Luce. Here, Jasper. For to that holy end I bear my armour.

Jasp. You are mine. Mrs. Mer. Alas, sir, I am a poor gentlewoman,

Hum. If it bo so, my friend, you use me fine; and I have lost my money in this forest.

What do you think I am ? Ralph. Desert, you would say, lady; and not lost Jasp. An arrant noddy. Whilst I have sword and lauce. Dry up your tears,

Ilum. A word of obloquy! Now, by God's body, Which ill befit the beauty of that face,

I'll tell thy master, for I know thee well. And tell the story, if I may request it,

Jasp. Nay, an' you be so forward for to tell, Of your disastrous fortune.

Tako that, and that; and tell him, sir, I gave it; Mrs. Mer. Out, alas! I left a thousand pound, And say I paid you well.

[Beats him. a thousand pound, e'en all the money I had laid Hum. Oh, sir, I have it, up for this youth, upon the sight of your master And do confess the payment. Pray be quiet! ship, you look'd so grim, and, as I may say it, Jasp. Go, get you to your nightcap, and the saving your presence, more like a giant than a To cure your beaten bones.

[diet, mortal man.

Luce. Alas, poor Humphrey ! Ralph. I am as you are, lady; so are they, Get thee some wholesome broth, with sage and All mortal. But why weeps this gentle squire ? A little oil of roses, and a feather (cumfry;

Mrs. Mer. Has he not cause to weep, do you To 'noint thy back withal. think, when he hath lost his inheritance ?

Hum. When I came hither, Ralph. Young hope of valour, weep not; I am 'Would I bad gone to Paris with John Dory! here

Luce. Farewell, my pretty nump:? I'm very That will confound thy foe, and pay it dear

I cannot bear thee company.

(sorry Upon his coward head, that dares deny

Hum. Farewell! Distressed squires and ladies equity.

The devil's dam was ne'er so banged in hell. I have but one horse, upon which shall ride

[Excunt LUCE and JASPER. This lady fair behind me, and before

Wife. This young Jasper will prove me anThis courteous squire. Fortune will give us more other things, a' my conscience, an' he may be Upon our next adventure. Fairly speed suffered. George! dost not see, George, how a' Beside us, Squire and Dwarf, to do us need! swaggers, and tlies at the very heads a' folks, as

[Lxeunt. he were a dragon? Well, if I do not do his Cit. Did not I tell you, Nell, what your man lesson for wronging this poor gentleman, I am would do ? By the faith of my body, wench, for

His friends that brought him clean action and good delivery, they may all cast up might have been better occupied, I wis, than their caps at him.

have taught him these fegaries. He's e'en in the • Wife. And so they may, i'faith; for I dare highway to the gallows, God bless him! speak it boldly, the twelve companies of London Cit. You're too bitter, cony; the young man cannot match him, timber for timber. Well, may do well enough for all this. George, an he be not inveig led by some of these Wife. Come hither, Master Humphrey. Has paltry players, I ha' much marvel; but, George, he hurt you ? Now beshrew his fingers fort ! we ba' done our parts if the boy have any grace Here, sweetheart, here's some green ginger for to be thankful.

thee. Now, beshrew my heart, but a' has *Cit. Yes, I warrant thee, duckling.'

pepper-nel' in's head, as big as a pullet's egs!

Alas, sweet lamb, how thy temples beat! Take Enter Master HUMPHREY and LUCE.

the peace on him, sweetheart, take the peace on Hum. Good Mistress Luce, however I in fault him.

Enter Boy.
For your lame horse, you're welcome unto

Cit. No, no; you talk like a foolish woman!

I'll ha' Ralph fight with him, and swinge him But which way now to go, or what to say, I know not truly, till it be broad day.

up well-favouredly.-Sirrah, boy, come hither. Luce. Oh, fear not, Masier Humphrey; I am

Let Ralph come in and fight with Jasper. For this place good enough.


*Wife. Ay, and beat him well; he's an unhappys Hum. Then up and ride;

boy. Or, if it please you, walk for your repose;

* Boy.' Sir, you must pardon us ; the plot of Or sit, or, if you will, go pluck a rose;

our play lies contrary; and 'twill hazard the Either of which shall be indifferent

spoiling of our play. To your good friend and Humphrey, whose

consent Is so entangled ever to your will,

John Dory was a character in a popular song of the

time. As the poor harmless horse is to the mill.

2 nump-blockhead, numskull.

pepper-nel--apparently a lump or swelling.--NARES. prest—eady:


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no true woman.


3 4 3

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Cit. Plot me no plots! I'll ha' Ralph como a fire-drake? I am afraid my boy's miscarried; out: I'll make your house too hot for you else. if he be, though he were Master Merrythought's

Boy. Why, sir, he shall; but if anything fall son a thousand times, if there be any law in out of order, the gentlemen must pardon us. England, I'll make some of them smart for't.

Cit. Go your ways, goodman boy! I'll hold Cit. No, no; I have found out the matter, him a penny, he shall have his bellyful of fight- sweetheart; Jasper is enchanted; as sure as we ing now.-Ho! here comes Ralph! no more!' are here, he is enchanted: ho could no more bave Enter RALPH, Mrs. MerryTHOUGHT, MICHAEL, Jord-mayor's.

stood in Ralph's hands, than I can stand in my

I'll bave a ring to discover all enTim, and GEORGE.

chantments, and Ralph shall beat him yet Be Ralph. What knight is that, squire ? Ask him no more vexed, for it shall be so.'

if he keep
The passage, bound by love of lady fair,
Or else but prickant."

Hum. Sir, I am no knight,
But a poor gentleman that this same night

Before the Bell Inn at Wallham.
Had stolen from me, upon yonder green,
My lovely wife, and suffer'd (to be seen

Enter RALPH, Tim, GEORGE, Mrs. MERRYYet extant on my shoulders) such a greeting,

THOUGHT, and MICHAEL. That whilst I live I shall think of that meeting. • Wife. Oh, husband, here's Ralph again!

• Wife. Ay, Ralph, he beat him unmercifully, Stay, Ralph, let me speak with thee. How dost Ralph; an' thou sparest him, Ralph, I would thou, Ralph ? Art thou not shrewdly hurt? thou wert banged.

The foul great lungieslaid unmercifully op Cit. No more, wife, no more!'

thee; there's some sugar-candy for thee. ProRalph. Where is the caitiff wretch hath done ceed ; thou shalt have another bout with him. this deed ?

. Cit. If Ralph had him at the fencing-school, Lady, your pardon! that I may proceed

if he did not make a puppy of him, and drive Upon the quest of this injurious knight.

him up and down the school, he should ne'er And thou, fair squire, repute me not the worse, come in my shop more.' In leaving the great venture of the purse,

Mrs. Mer. Truly Master Knight of the Burg. And the rich casket, till some better leisure. ing Pestle, I am weary.

Mich. Indeed-la, mother, and I am Very Enter JASPER and LUCE.

hungry: Hum. Here comes the broker hath purloined Ralph. Take comfort, gentle dame, and you, my treasure.

fair squire! Ralph. Go, squire, and tell him I am here, For in this desert there must needs be placed An errant knight-at-arms, to cravo delivery Many strong castles, held by courteous knights ; Of that fair lady to her own knight's arms. And till I bring you safe to one of those, If he deny, bid him take choice of ground,

I swear by this my order ne'er to leave you. And so defy him.

• Wife. 'Well said, Ralph! George, Ralph was Tim. From the knight that bears

ever comfortable, was he not? The Golden Pestle, I defy thee, knight!

Cit. Yes, duck. Unless thou make fair restitution

Wife. I shall ne'er forget him: when we had Of that bright lady.

lost our child (you know it was strayed almost, Jasp. Tell the knight that sent theo

alone, to Puddle Wharf, and the criers were He is an ass; and I will keep the wench,

abroad for it, and there it had drowned itself, And knock his headpiece.

but for a sculler), Ralph was the most comfort. Ralph. Knight, thou art but dead,

ablest to me! Peace, mistress," says he, " let If thou recall not thy uincourteous terms.

it go! I'll get another as good.” Did he Role Wife. Break his pate, Ralph, break his pate, George, did he not say so? Ralph, soundly!'

Cit. Yes, indeed did he, mouse.' Jasp. Come, knight, I'm ready for you.—Now

Geo. I would we had a mess of pottage, and [Snatches away his Pestle. a pot of drink, equire, and were going to bed. Shall try what temper, sir, your mortar's of. Tim. Why, we are at Waltham-town's end, and With that he stood upright in his stirrups, and that's the Bell Inn. gave the knight of the calves-skin such a knock,

Geo. Take courage, valiant knight, damsel, that he forsook his horse, and down he fell; and

and squire! then he leaped upon him, and plucking off his I have discovered, not a stone's cast off, helmet

[Knocks him down. An ancient castle held by the old knight Hum. Nay, an' my noble knight be down so

Of the most holy order of the Bell, soon,

Who gives to all knights-errant entertain : Though I can scarcely go, I needs must run.

There plenty is of food, and all prepared

[Exit. By the white hands of his own lady dear. Wife. Run, Ralph, run, Ralph; run for thy He bath three squires that welcome all his guests: life, boy; Jasper comes, Jasper comes !'

The first, hight Chamberlino ; who will see [Erit Ralph, taking up the Pestle. Our beds prepared, and bring us snowy sbeets, Jasp. Come, Luce, we must have other arms Where never footman stretch'd his butter'd hans

The second, bight Tapstero; who will see Humphrey and Golden Pestle, both adieu ! Our pots full filled, and no froth therein,


The third, a gentle squire, Ostlero hight, • Wife. Sure the devil (God bless us!) is in this springald!? Why George, didst ever see such

lungiesma long, awkward fellow, ? Where neuer footman, &c. This alludes to the run

ning footmen, who, like the jockeys, were put upon I prickant-pricking or spurring along on a journey. particular diet; and, in order to presunt «Tumps the

calves of their legs were greased, and to this ibe lai 2 springald-youth.


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