And the vision told me, sister Taby∣tha, that this same day, the twelfth of March, in the yeer of grace 1641, at this same holy place, by a holy man, we two, who are both holy vessels, should be joyned together in the holy band of Matrimony.
My mother will be angry, I'm af∣feard.
Your mother will rejoyce. I would not for a world that you should do it, but that we were commanded from above; yea, I may say commanded: for, to do things without a divine warrant, is like unto the building of a fire without a bottom cake.
I (God knows) that it is.
Very well, sister. Now when my eyes were opened in the morning, I awoke: for it was morning-tide, and my eyes were opened; and I looked into my pockets; for my breeches lay upon a joyn'd stool not far from the beds side: and in my pockets, even made with leather, I looked (I say) and found; What did I finde? marry a License written with ink and pen: Where did I finde it? in no other place, but even in a godly Catechism which I had wrapt and folded up long-ways, even in that very pocket.
I wou'd my mother knew it. But I'll not resist, God willing.
There is a godly Teacher within, that never was defiled with the Cap and Surplice, never wore that gambol call'd the Hood; even he shall joyn our hands. Shall we enter, sister?
Brother, I'll not resist.
Act. 5. Scaen. 2.
Faith, Sir, I would not willingly be a man, if they be all like you.
Our sex is little beholding to you, Sir; I would your mother were alive to hear you. But pray, Mr. Truman, what shall we do when we are married?
We may do this, me thinks, and ne∣ver marry for the business.
Sure. Sir, you knew, when you were a suitor to my cousin Lucia.
Why here's a husband for a wench of clouts! May I never laugh again, if his company has not made me duller then Ale and butter'd cakes wou'd ha' done. I marry him? the old men must excuse me. I'll sooner chuse a fellow that lies bed-rid, and can do nothing a-nights but cough. Well, if I don't teach 'um what 'tis to force a wench that has wit, may my husband beat me when I have one, and I sit still and cry. I like this very well—It shall be so. Iane, come hi∣ther, Iane.
Act. 5. Scaen. 3.
O Iane, that's well; little think you what good's towards you; 'tis that you have wisht for, I dare say, th•se five yeers; a good handsome husband. What think you of young Truman?
Nay saith thou shalt e'en have him Page [unnumbered] thy self for better or worse. He's too han∣some indeed, unless he could make better use of his beauty; for by my troth, wench, I'm afraid thou'lt finde thy pillow as good a bed-fellow.
I pray do not mock your servant.
Thou shalt see, Iane, I do not; come in, wench, and I'll tell thee all my plot.
Act. 5. Scaen. 4.
Well, Sir, is the Cook doing accor∣ding to my directions?
Yes, Sir, he's very hard at his busi∣ness i'the kitchin: h' has been a swearing and cursing at the scullions at least this hour, Sir.
'Tis such an over-wasted Coxcomb; an other wedding dinner would make him a S. Lau•ence: bid him be sure the Venison be well season'd
Troth, Sir, I dare not speak to him now, unless I put on the armor in the hall: he had like to have spitted me next to a goose, for saying that he look'd like an ox that was roasted whole at S. Iame's fayre.
You have invited a•l the guests to dinner you talk•d of?
And the widdows round-headed kin∣dred?
They'l come i'their garded petticoats, will they not? You should have bid 'um eat no por•ige at home, to seem more mannerly here at dinner. The widdow will be angry at their charges, but I'll please her at night. Go bid the Butler look to his plate, and not be drunk till he sees it all in again. Whose at the door there?
Act. 5 Scaen. 5.
Faith, Sir, you know as well as I; some charitable beast come to be drest here. Shall I call the Cook, Sir?
Why this is my house here, Iohn: ha! ha! little thought I to have seen my house in Fleet-street again. Where's my brother Blade?
They call me Captain Blade.
Is this he Iohn? Let me see
'Tis now just seven, Sir.
Seven! me think's I was here but yesterday: How the what-d'ye-call-'um runs? What do ye call it?
I, I, Time. What was't I was say∣ing? O, I was telling you brother, that I had quite forgot you: was I not telling him so Iohn?
By my troth, Sir, we are both quits then; for I have forgot you too. Why, you were dead five yeers ago.
Was I so? I ha' quite forgot it. Iohn, was I dead five yeers ago? My memo•ry failes me very much of late▪
We were worse then dead I'm sure; we were taken by a barbarous kind of Nati∣on, and there made slaves these five yeers. Iohn quoth he! I was poor Iohn indeed: I'm sure they fed us three whole yeers with nothing but Acorns and water: we lookt like wicker-bottles.
How, Sirrah? Did your Master look like a wicked boat-man?
Where did they take you prisoners?
Nay ask Iohn, he can tell you I warrant you. 'Twas in—tell him, Iohn, where it was.
In Guiny, Sir.
By what Country-men were you taken?
Why they were call'd—I know not Page [unnumbered] what they call'd 'um 'twas an odde kinde of name; but Iohn can tell you.
'Slife, who I Sir? d'ye think I can remember all things?
'Tis in my book here; I remember well the name of any Country under the Sun.
I know their names, Sir, well enough; but I onely tri'd my Masters memory. They 're call'd Tartarians.
How say you? what were they?
I, I, these were the men
How, Iohn! why all the world, man, lies between 'um: they live up i' the North.
I, the very North, Iohn.
That's true indeed: but these were another nation of the Tartarians that liv'd by us.
Well, how escap'd you, Iohn, at last?
Why 'faith, Sir, to tell you the truth, for I love not to tell a lye, the Kings daugh∣ter fell in love with me, and for my sake there set us free. My master has it all in his book; 'tis a fine story.
Strange! In what ship did you come back?
What ship? why 'twas call'd—a thing that swims—How d'ye call it?
What? the Mermaid?
No, no, no, let me see—
What? was't the Triton?
No, no—it swims, I tell you.
No, no— I have forgot what 'twas.
What say you, Iohn?
(Pox take him.) I, Sir? O God, my Master, Sir, can tell as well as I.
He says he has forgot.
Tis his pleasure to say so, Sir: he may say what he pleases. (A plague upon him.) You can't conceive the misery we have past, Sir.
Well, brother, I'll make bold to ask one question more of you. Where did you leave your Will when you went away?
'Slife, now he's pos'd again.
I'll tell you presently, brother; let me see.
In what place you left your Will?
I, that was it indeed; you're i' the right; 'twas the very thing you askt me; and yet see how quickly I forgot it. My memo∣ry's short, alas, God help me.
This is no answer to my question, yet.
'Tis true indeed. What was your question, pray?
Where you left your Will.
Good lord• I had forgot you askt me this; I had forgot, i'faithlaw, that I had: you'll pardon my infirmity, I hope, brother; for alas—alas—I ha' forgot what I was going to say to you; but I was a saying somthing, I am sure.
Did not you know us, Will? prithee tell's true.
No, by this light: why, you're grown as black as the chimney-stock.
That's the nature of the Country where we liv'd. O the stories that I shall tell you! And how does Nell, and little bonny Bess? are they as merry grigs as e'er they were?
No; Bess, poor wench, is married to a Chandler; but she's true blue still, as right as my leg, I'll warrant you.
What is't, Iohn? what was I going to say, Iohn, to my brother?
I know not, Sir; was't not about your daughter?
I, I, my daughter—What d'ye call her?
'Tis true indeed; my daughter Lu∣cia, brother.
Pray walk into the parlour; I'll come to you presently, and tell you all.
Well, Iohn, put me in minde o' my daughter Lucia. (A plague o' your Tarta∣rians.)
(And o' your what-d'ye-call ums.)
If these be rogues, they are as impu∣dent as Mountebanks and Juglers: and if I Page [unnumbered] finde 'um to be rogues, (as I see nothing yet to the contrary) how I will exercise my rogues! The tyranny of a new Beadle over a beggar, shall be nothing to mine. Come hither, Will, what think you of these two fellows?
'Faith, Sir, I know not: but if you think it be not my old Master, I'll beat 'um worse then the Tartarians did.
No, no, let's try um first. Thou wast wont to be a very precious knave, and a great acter too, a very Roscius. Didst not thou once act the Clown in Musidorus?
No, Sir; but I plaid the Bear there.
The Bear? why that's a good part; th'art an acter then, I'll warrant thee. The Bear's a well pen'd part. And you remem∣ber my brothers humour, don't you? They have almost hit it.
Yes, Sir, I know the shortness of my Masters memory; he would forget some∣times to pay me my wages till he was put in minde on't.
Well said. I'll dress thee within in his own chamber; and all the servants shall acknowledge you. But who shall do trusty Iohn?
O, Ralph the Butler, Sir; he's an old actor, Sir, h'has plaid a King he says. I have heard him speak a Play ex tempore in the Buttry, Sir.
O Ralph, excellent Ralph, incompa∣rable Ralph, Ralph against the world! Come away, William; I'll give you instructions within. It must be done in the twinkling of an eye.
Act. 5. Scaen. 6.
Now, Mistress Tabytha Cutter, let me kiss thee.
Pray God my mother be not angry.
Think not o' thy mother, Spouse; I tell thee, Spouse, thou shalt be a mother thy self, within these nine months.
Is that a Psalm, brother husband, that you sing?
No, no, a short ejaculatory. Sirrah boy, are the things within that I spoke for?
Go fetch 'um in.
What? do these cloathes befit Queen Tabytha▪s husband? this hat with a chimny-crown, and brims no broader then a mode∣rate hat-band? Give me the Periwig, boy. What? shall Empress Tabytha's husband go as if his head were scalded? or with the seam of a shirt for a band? Shall I walk without a sword, and not dare to quarrel i' the streets, and thrust men from the wall? Will the Fidlers be here presently, boy?
Pish, I can't abide these doings. Are you mad? O lord! what will my mother say? There shall come no Fidlers here.
Be peaceable, gentle Tabytha; they will not bring the Organs with 'um. I say be peaceable; he vision bid me do thus. Wilt thou resist the vision?
An' these be your visions—Little did I think 'twere—Is this your religion and praying? Which of all the Prophets wore such a map about his head, or such a sheet about his neck? What shall I do? I am undone.
What shalt thou do? Why, thou shalt dance, and sing, and drink, and laugh; thou shalt go with thy brests open, and thy hair braided; thou shalt put fine black stars upon thy face, and have great bobs for thy ears. Nay, if thou dost begin to look rusti∣ly, I'll have thee paint thy face like the whore of B•bylon.
O that ever I was born to see this day!
What? dost thou weep, Queen Did•? Thou shalt have Sack to drive away thy sor∣row. Come hither, boy, fetch me a quart of Canary.
O art thou come, boy— Well said, fill a brimmer; nay fuller yet, yet a little fuller. So. Here's to the Lady-Spouse; to our good sport to night.
Drink it your self, if you will; I'll not touch it.
By this hand, thou shalt pledge me, seeing the vision said so. Drink, or I'll take a Coach and carry thee to a Play immedi∣ately.
I can't abide—
Why, this will clear thy heart, wench: Sack, and an husband, wench, are both com∣fortable things. Have at you again.
I'll pledge you no more. not I.
Here, take this glass, and take it off too, or else I'll swear an hundred oathes in a breathing-time. Here—
Well, you're the strangest man—
Why this is right now. Nay off with it. So. But the vision said that whatsoever we left of this same wine, would turn to poison straight. There, here's to you, Taby∣tha, once again: 'tis the visions will.
What? must I drink again, then? Well, I'll not resist. You're such another brother-husband.
How was't? Twas a pretty one.
O divine Tabytha! Here come the Fidlers too. Strike up, you rogues.
What? must we dance now? is not that the fashion? I could have danc'd the Coranto when I was a girl. The Coranto's a curious dance.
We'll dance out the disease of the Tarantula: but first we'll have a health to my pretty Tabytha.
I'll begin't my self. Here, Duck, here's to all that love us.
A health, you eternal scrapers sound a health. Bravely done, Tabytha: what thinkst thou now o' thy mother?
A fig for my mother; I'll be a mother my self. Come, Duckling, shall we go home?
Go home? the Bride and the Bride∣groom go? We'll dance home. Afore us, squeakers: that way, and be hang'd. So. O brave Queen Tabytha! excellent Empress Tabytha! On, you rogues
Act. 5. Scaen. 7.
I must not be fob'd off thus about my daughter: I remember not your excuse; but Iohn can tell well enough, I warrant you.
I have told you the plain truth: you'll not be angry, I hope.
I shall have cause to be angry, I fear: Did not I leave her to his charge, Iohn? Brother, I tell you—
I must not answer, brother—
I know you put me out, that I might forget what I said to you before: remember, Iohn: I'll be as cunning as you're crafty: remember, John. How now? what's the matter?
Ho, my old Master's come; he's lighted now at the door with his man John: he's asking for you; he longs to see you: my Master, my old Master.
This fellow's mad.
If you wo'n't believe me, go in and see, Sir: he's not so much alter'd, but you'll quickly know him. I knew him as soon as I saw him. Pray, Sir, go in.
Why this is strange.
If this be true, what course shall we take, Dogrel? I begin to shake like a plum-tree-leaf.
We'll shift some way or other, I war∣rant you.
How, Dogrel? prithee how?
Let the worst come, we can be but whipt, or burnt in the hand, a• the most.
Ho, our best way will be to hang our selves—'Slife, here's John.
Act. 5. Scaen 8.
Give me thy hand i'faith, boy: is't possible that thou shouldst be alive still?
Ha rogue! art thou come i'faith? I have a pottle o' Sack to welcome thee.
Why you'll not look upon your poor friends, John Give me thy golls, John. How hast thou done this great while?
I thank you all heartily for your love; thank you with all my heart-law. What? my old bed-fellow Robin? how dost do? when shall we steal Apricocks ag•in? d'ye remem∣ber, Robin?
A murrain take you; you'll never forget your roguery.
A murrain take you all: this was your plot, and be hang'd▪ Would I were Puny the Wit again.
Come, John, let's go to the Buttry and be merry: Ralph longs to see you, I'm sure.
And how does Ralph? good honest Ralph? That Ralp's as honest a fellow, though I say't my self; I love him with all my heart-law, that I do; and there's no love lost, I dare say for him.
Come, my masters, will you go in? I'll prevail with the Cook for a slice or two of Beef; and we'll have a cup of Stingo, the best in the ce•lar.
Well said, steel to the back still; that was your word, you know. My master•s com∣ing in: go. I'll follow you straight.
Make haste, good John, for I can't stay.
Here's a company of as honest fel∣lows a•sa ma• would with to live i' the house withal; all, no man excepted▪
Would I were out of the house, as honest as they are. Here they come, John.
John, quoth he, with a pox.
Act. 5. Scaen. 9.
Thank you good brother. Truly we ha' past through many dangers; my man shall tell you all, I'm old and crasy, and forget these things.
Pox on't, the Widow's come already; keep 'um here John, till I come back. O are you here sweet-heart?
Who have you yonder, I pray?
O you should not ha' seen 'um yet, they are Maskers.
Not vagrant players, I hope?
No, no, they can onely tumble, and dance upon the rope, you shall see 'um after dinner. Let•s away sweet-heart, the Parson stays for us, he has blown his fingers this hour.
I'm glad the Captain's gone, now will I sneak away, like one that has stolen a silver-spoone.
I'll be your man and follow you.
Who are these Iohn? By your leave, Sir; would you speak with any here?
The Captain, Sir. But I'll take some other time to wait on him, my occasi∣ons call me now.
Nay, pray, Sir, stay. Whom did you say you would speak withall?
The Captain, Sir. But another time will serve. I ha' some haste of busi∣ness.
Whom would he speak with, Iohn? I forget still.
The Captain Sir.
Captain? What Captain Sir?
Your brother I suppose he is.
'Ti, true indeed, I had forgot that my brother was a Captain. I cry you mer∣cy, Page [unnumbered] Sir, he'll be here presently. Are you an English-man, Sir?
Where were you born I pray?
In London, Sir. I must leave you—
In London? y'are an English-man then I see, Sir. Would you have spoke with me Sir?
No, with your brother, but my busi∣ness with him requires not haste, and there∣fore—
You're not in haste you say; pray sit down then: may I crave your name, Sir?
My name's not worth your know∣lede, Sir; but my mans name's Iohn.
(If I be John any more I'll be hang'd) No my name's Timothy, Sir.
Mr. John Timothy? Very well, Sir. You seem to Be a Travellor.
We're newly come out of Affrick, and therefore have some business that re∣quires us
Of Affrick? Law you there now. What Country pray?
Prester John's Country. Fare you well, Sir. now.
Marry God forbid. What come from Prester John, and we not drink a cup of Sack together?
(What shall I do?) Friend, shall I trouble you to shew me where your house of office is?
You'll stay here Mr.—what's your name, pray?
Gods me, 'tis true indeed Mr. John Timothy.
Ill only make water, and come to you.
The door, Sir, is lockt; the Cap∣tain has lockt us all in here, if you•ll be pleas'd to stay, Sir, till he comes—
(I'd as live stay to meet the Devil, or a Sargeant.)
(Would I were hid like maggot in a pescod; we shall be abused I see, oh, oh, oh,)
What makes you quake so, Sir?
Nothing, onely I have an extream list to make water: 'Tis nothing else by this light.
My brother would not have you gone it seems. Your names Mr. John Ti∣mothy, is it?
No, that's my mans name.
O, your mans name; 'tis true, 'tis very true indeed, that's your man's name. You'll pardon me, Sir?
Pray, friend, do you know the great City call'd Astervadil, where my name-sake Prester-Iohn keeps his Court?
Know't? I, very well; I have liv'd there a great while, I have cause to know't.
Ther's a brave Castle of three miles long.
I, and many stately building too.
The noble mens houses are all built of Marble.
They make indeed a glorious show. I ha' seen 'um.
It may be so. But to my knowledg, friend, there is no such City there.
It may be the names are alter'd since I was there. (Here's the Captain, I'll sneak behind the hangings.)
Act. 5. Scaen. 10.
I like this Person well, h' has made short work on't, he had appointed sure some meetting at an Ale-house. Welcome wife, welcome home now. But I ha' two brethren which you must know.
Marry, Heav'ns for•sheild, Sir.
Brethren in God sweet-heart, no o∣therwise. Come hither Guiny brother; what say you?
This Gentleman, Brother, has stay'd for you here; pray use him kindly, he's a Traveller: where did you say you travell'd Sir?
O yes! How do you, brother?
I your brother? what d'ye mean?
Why, are not you my brother Blade that was taken captive by the Tartars? Ha!
You're merrily dispos'd, Sir: I your brother! I taken captive by the Tartars! Ha, ha, ha! I understand not your meaning, Sir.
What an impudent slave's this! Sir∣rah monster, didst not thou come with thy man Iohn?
I, my man Iohn? here's no such fellow here, you see: how you're mistaken, Sir! you mean some other man. This is the strangest humour.
Sirrah, dost thou see this fist? dost thou see this foot? I'll wear these out upon thee—
Hold, pray Sir, hold. I remember now indeed that I was Blade the Merchant; but I had quite forgot it. You must pardon me; my memory's very weak.
I like the humour. But I must know, Sir, who you are, now you ha' left being my brother.
Who, I? don't you know me? I'm Dogrel the Poet, and Puny was my man Iohn. Lord that you should not know▪ me all this while! not know Poet Dogrel!
O thank you, M. Dogrel; Can you dance upon the ropes, and tumble? Truely I never knew it before, not I.
Where's that fool, Puny? Is he slipt away?
(He was wise enough to do so, I'll warrant you.)
I will beat him so, that he shall not finde a similitude for himself. As for you, Dogrel, because you came off pretty hand∣somely, with the best at the last, like an Epi∣gram, I may chance to pardon you; but up∣on this condition, that you make no Epitha∣lamiums upon my marriage.
Well said, Will; bravely done,
How's this? I plainly see I'm an Ass then: 'twas this damn'd Puny's fearful∣ness spoil'd all.
(A pox o' this coward Dogrel: I thought they were not the right ones.)
I see my Players had more wit then my Poet. Here's something for you to drink. Go in now: this is your Cue of Exit; and see all things there in a readiness.
Nay, let the Master go first. Follow me, Iohn.
What, husband? Ha' you giv'n 'um any thing? Indeed, Love, you're too la∣vish.
'Twas very wittily put off o' me, howsoever.
Act. 5. Scaen. 11.
How now? what ha' we here? ano∣ther Puppet-play? Any thing now but bro∣thers, and I'm for 'um. Who? Cutter? What's the matter, Poet? Come, what de∣vice is this? like one o' yours?
Stay at the door, ye sempiternal squeakers. Come, Queen o' fame.
Lord, I'm so weary with dancing as passes. Yonder's my mother. Oh mother! what d'ye think I ha' been doing to day?
Why what, childe?
Nay nothing: I have onely been married a little; and my husband and I ha' so danc'd it since!
Brave Tabytha still! Never be an∣gry, Widow; you know where Marriages are made. How now, Captain? If I turn Tapster now, 'twill be happie for you: for I shall be rich enough to trust you, Captain.
'Twas Gods will, I see, and there∣fore there's no resisting. But what d'ye mean, son? I hope you'll not turn swag∣gerer?
'Tis for special reasons, gentle mo∣ther. Why how now, Dogrel? M. Blade the Merchant looks as if he were broke: he has turn'd away his servant too.
Who's that? M. Dogrel i' these Players clothes? Can M. Dogrel dance too, husband?
Prithee, Cutter, what hath exalted Tabytha thus?
What? this good fortune she has got by me: You know what a dull creature she was before; her soul was in her body, like butter in a hot cake; now she's as full of Spirits as Hell it self. My counsel and two cups o' Sack, have wrought this miracle.
Act. 5. Scaen. 12.
Well said! You are joyn'd then now, my blessing on you both; come in to your father Blade. Nay, daughter Aurelia, off with your veil now. Ha! Whom ha' you married here?
I know not, Sir. She was Aurelia when we went to Church.
This is my daughters maid. Where's the wench? Ho! Aurelia?
Act. 5. Scaen. 13.
Here, Sir? Why do you make your husband lead your maid in thus?
My husband, Sir? what's that?
Why, huswife is not Mr. Truman your husband?
No, by my troth, Sir, I thank God.
These are fine tricks; delicate, dainty tricks. Sirrah, how durst you Sir∣rah?—and for your minion—marry come up, marry a Chamber-maid? Well, Cap∣tain, this was your plotting. You said in∣deed you'd make a Iethron o' me: y' ha' don't indeed; I thank you, Captain Blade, 'tis well. Out o' my sight, Sir, with your minion there, I say out o' my sight. Ha! am I fool'd thus? I shall make some repent it, I hold a groate on't.
D'ye hear, Mr. Truman—
Yes, Sir, I do hear; and I will not hear if it please me, Sir; but some body shall hear o' this Captain. But, Captain, you're deceived, this is not a lawful mar∣riage.
Ha, ha, ha! To see how things are come about! I thought Dick would not Page [unnumbered] be such a fool as to marry one that he knew not. He knew her well enough, I'll war∣rant you. How do you, Captain? I was somewhat rash: I'm an old man, alas.
(I'll venture out amongst 'um.)
What? my son Iohn? d'ye know this Gentlewoman?
D'ye know this piece of gold, Sir, which you broke?
Hum? Yes 'faith, 'tis the same: thou art my Cynthia, wench, my Endymion: we'll be married presently. O for a witty Parson to marry us two Wi•s!
Slife, one, two, three, i'faith four matches here at one time! What accursed fortune•s this! there's three feasts lost: they'll dine all together.
I will not kiss thee, my little maga∣zine, till I have washt my face Ha, M. Do∣grel, hast thou got no Spouse too?
The thrice three Sisters are my wives.
Well, because thou art a Poet, and my Jews-trump and I are Wits, thou shalt eat and drink at my pavilion always.
You shall ha' wine and serge. D'ye remember, Dogrel?
Thank you: but I'll ne'er lye for you again.
Come, let's all in to dinner.