The forrest of fancy Wherein is conteined very prety apothegmes, and pleasaunt histories, both in meeter and prose, songes, sonets, epigrams and epistles, of diuerse matter and in diuerse manner. VVith sundry other deuises, no lesse pithye then pleasaunt and profytable.
H. C., Chettle, Henry, d. 1607?, attributed name., Cheeke, Henry, 1548?-1586?, attributed name., Constable, Henry, 1562-1613, attributed name.
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Page  [unnumbered]

The Forrest of Fancy.

¶A morrall of the misery and mischiefe that raigneth amongst wicked worldlinges, with an admonition to all true Christians, to forsake their sinne and amend their manners.

WHo so he be that silent sits,
and sets his mind to see,
The subtle slights that wily wights
doe worke in each degree.
shall surely fynd full great abuse,
In euery place committed:
And vertue boyde and out of vse,
all reason quight remitted:
Might maistereth right, the pore are pincht,
almost in euery place,
Fraude, flattery, gold, and greedy gaine,
each where doth purchase grace.
But truth and plaine simplicity.
reapes hatred euery where:
Good deedes are dead, and charity,
hath hid her head for feare.
Whores hold the place that Matrons ••lde,
doe merite moste to haue:
And flattery flockes about the Court,
in steede of fathers graue.
The couetous carle doth scrape for coyne,
the royotous sonne spendes all:
The true man cannot scape the theefe,
but in his handes must fall,
The Usurer now doth vse his trade,
The Landlord raise his rent:
The powling Lawyer playes his part,
the truth to circumuent.
Our Gentles now doe iette it out,
in brauery passing measure,
Page  [unnumbered] Till they haue lost by vaine expence,
both credite, land and treasure.
The yeomans sonne not liking of,
his fathers honest state,
Will climbe to be a gentle man,
and euery Gentles mate.
The Gentleman will be a Knight,
the Knight a Lord likewise,
The Lord an Earle, the Earle a Duke,
the Duke will higher rise,
And make himselfe a puisaunt Prince,
the Prince will Monarke be,
So no man now will be content,
To bide in his degree.
The sonne doth seeke his fathers death,
his liuing to obtaine,
Faith fayles in all, few trusty friendes,
doe any where remayne.
The mayster seekes by rygorous meanes,
his seruauntes to suppresse,
And seruaunts worke all meanes they may,
their maysters to distresse.
Now mothers trayne their Daughters vp,
In loathsome liberty:
Whereby oft times their honest names
they bring in ieoperdy.
Excesse is vsde in euery place,
the pore no whit releude,
Labour is loathde, and Idlenesse
ech where his web hath weude,
The Tauernes tiplers ply a pace,
eache alehouse hath his knightes:
In dice and dauncing, deuilish trades,
are all their whole delightes.
All law is left for liberty,
all vertue changde for vice:
Page  [unnumbered] All truth is turnde to Trecheryē,
all thinges inhaunce their price.
Eache craftes man now hath craft at will,
his neighbour to defraude,
They sweare, and oft forsweare themselues,
for euery foolish gaude.
But is it well where euery thing,
doth seeme so much amis?
No doubtlesse no: a wicked world,
and wretched state it is.
A world in deede, deuided quight,
from godlinesse and grace:
A world that greatly God abhorres,
from which he turnes his face.
A world it is, which will not last,
a world whose end is nye:
A world that shall his fury taste,
that fees our sins from hye.
A world that will full well content,
the enemy of our ioy.
A world that workes his lewd intent,
that would our soules destroy.
Therefore let each true christian hart,
his secrete sins forsake:
To God let him with speede reuert,
and meeke subiection make,
Committing all his actions still,
to his deuine protection,
So shall he surely shun all ill,
and liue without infection.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

After the death of Oedipus King of Theabes, his two sonnes Ethiocles and Polinices striuing whether of them should succeede him, in the ende it was agreede, that they should raigne by course, one yeare the one, the next yeare the other, But Ethiocles raigning fyrst, whé his yeare was expired, woulde not giue place to his brother Polinices, which caused him to write vnto him in effect as followeth.

THy cruell dealing hath prue••de,
thy Brothers trembling hand,
O Etheocles for to write,
and let thee vnderstand
what iniury thou doest offer me,
in going thus about
To breake the promise made to me,
wherein thou doest no doubt,
Both God and nature much offend,
for when we were at strife,
when deadly discord twixt vs twaine,
and enuye was so rife,
That each of vs the Kingdome craude,
our father then decest,
It was by counsayle graue decreede,
to cause our countreyes rest,
That each should yearely raigne by course,
whereto thou didst agree,
Then drawing Lots who should be fyrst,
the lot did light on thee.
I gaue thee place, as right requyrde,
thou hast a yeare and more,
Enioyde the same most peaceably
without anoy, therefore
Thou shouldst permit thy brother now,
thee therein to supply,
Page  [unnumbered] To rule as thou haste done before,
but thou doest it deny,
So much ambition doth thee blind,
and fylthy lukers lure,
That to resigne to me my right,
thou mayst now now indure,
For when I did the same demaund,
thou proudly didst refuse,
To render it, wherein thou doest
thy brother much abuse,
But doest thou thinke I will receiue,
such aunswers at thy hande
And suffer thee against my will,
to rule the Realme and land.
Which I should doe, that will I no
for all thy power and strength,
But in despight of thee I hope,
to haue the same at length.
And make thee feele the smake thy selfe,
of this thy offred wrong,
If that to yield to my request,
thou doest the time prolong.
Adrastus is a mighty King,
whose Daughter is my wife,
And for that cause wich all his power,
will aide me during life,
whose force conioyned shith mine owne,
doth farre surpasse thy might,
Therefore let reason ī me the raine,
doe yeeld to me my right,
Let vs like brethren liue and loue,
each other as we ought:
Let vs not stray from natures boundes,
and stirre vp strife for naught.
Least that Reporte reproch 〈◊〉,
on vs doe rumour raise,
Page  [unnumbered] And so the race of Oedipus,
be wicked deemde alwayes.
what though our father did offend,
in taking to his fere
Jocasta fayre vnwittingly,
that was his mother deare,
Shall that to vs a patterne be:
to teach vs to offend.
Nay rather let it be a meane,
to make vs to amend.
Shall it be sayd that we haue wrought,
the ruine of our land,
And of our selues so wilfully,
let all thinges well be scand.
Consider well what daungers great,
we may incurre thereby,
And what great mischiefe may insue
if thou this thing deny,
Thou knowest that from the mighty Ioue,
decendes our royall race,
Let vs not therefore doe the thing,
that may our byrth deface,
Let not the Thebans iustly be
compeld to curse vs both,
For thy ambitious greedy mind,
whereof I would be loth,
For what if in this cursed strife,
we both should chaunce to dye,
what great contention should there be,
who should our place supply?
what great disdaine? what priny grudge?
what tumultes then would grow?
what hurly burly would there be?
what treason then would flowe?
Through ciuill warre the countrey would,
be topsy turuy turude
Page  [unnumbered] Strong holds would then be battered downe,
whole Townes and Citties burnde,
What clamours then. what dolefull cryes,
would be throughout the land?
Now many Orphans would be made?
who should in safety stand?
Chast Uirgins would be then deflourde,
yong infantes would be slaine,
The rich men should be spoylde and robde,
the porer put to paine,
Oh what disorder then would grow?
what murder made of men?
what sacraledge, what raunsack rude,
what bloodshead would be then?
waye well these thinges, my brother deare,
which if thou doe proceede,
Is lykely for to come to passe,
therefore I say take heede,
For if thou be the cause thereof,
then truely shalt thou trye,
Their blood on thee for thy desertes,
from heauen will vengeaunce crye.
And I not to be blamde at all.
sith that I nothing craue,
But that which doth to me partaine
and I of right should haue,
Take heede in time, aduise thee well,
hereafter comes not yet,
The house can not stand long, that is
on ill foundation set,
The ship that at sure anker lyes,
is safe in euery place:
Twirt backe and tree, thrust not thy hande
beware in any case
Thou put not fyre vnto the tow,
sharpe not thy knife I say,
Page  [unnumbered] If thou therewith wilt not be hurt,
but take this by the way.
That if thou tread vpon a worme.
she will turne back againe:
Care Stede be stolne, shut stable dore,
else is it all in vaine.
For he that takes not heede before,
shall afterwardes repent it:
Wherefore I say looke to it well.
whilst that thou maist preuent it.
A man when he doth see the stroke,
may soone auoyde the same,
So thou if that to reasons lore,
thou wilt thy fancy frame.
Thou maist this mischiefee easly shun,
that hangeth ouer thee:
But who so blind the prouerb sayth,
as hee that will not see.
Thou knowest all this as well as I,
I neede not make relation
Thereof to thee, wordes are but wind,
where will hath domination.
Raine nothing profite can the corne,
which on drie stones is sowne:
Nor councell, him which doth mislike,
all counsell saue his owne,
I can and doe bide wrong ynough,
but cannot to much beare:
Looke eare you leape, for feare you catch,
awrong sow by the eare.
As by his Trumpe, the trumpiter
doth show his meaning plaine,
So bymy letters in likewise,
my purpose I explaine.
Doe therefore as you shall see cause,
the blame shall byde in you:
Page  [unnumbered] If any thing amisse do chaunce.
and so I say adue,
Finis.

A warning to yong men to flye the flattery, and shun the deceiptes of dissem∣bling dames.

WHat hard mishaps doth hamper youth,
when cursed Cupid list to frowne:
And yet he will not credite truth,
Till froward fortune fling him downe.
But when he is with dole distrest,
Then all to late he can perceiue,
what madnes did his mind mollest,
His wretched woe by wrong to weaue,
yea then he doth all Dames defy,
And vowes in vaine their fraude to flye,
Must hory heares needes make vs wise,
Discouering naked treasons hooke,
whose glittering hue by slight deuice.
Doth make them blind that thereon looke,
And till in trappe they taken be,
That turnes their pleasure all to paine,
Their folly fond they cannot see,
Such madnes moues their busy braine,
In wisdomes wayes they think they walke,
And so for chese doe champe on chalke.
If liuing wightes might playnly see,
The wily workes of womens wits,
which couered close in bosome he,
Disclosde at last by frantike fits.
Then would they learne to leaue their lookes,
And glaunce no more their glaring eyes,
Uppon those baites on hidden hookes,
Page  [unnumbered] Which whoso shall attempt to tast,
Is like for aye in woe to wast.
Where suters serue with long delay,
In dayly hope of some good hap,
Tormenting griefes at length doth pay,
Their pencion with an after clappe,
For such rewardes they dayly fynde,
That fyxe their fancy faithfully,
On any catte of Cresseds kinde.
That neuer countes of constancy,
whome Eue instructed long agoe,
To worke to man all greefe and woe.
Behold the gwerdon due to loue,
Bestowde vpon a fickle Dame,
As good of xotten redes to proue,
Some precious iem in forme to frame,
For why repentaunce comes at last,
And gripes his hart with griesly greefe,
That erst fond fancy followed fast,
which left him voyde of all reliefe:
A iust reward for rechelesse wightes,
That will not shun such vain delightes.
Youth bends his net to catch the pray,
which some inioy that take no paine,
Ht toyles, yet seeth euery day,
His labour wasted all in vaine,
He beates the bush, and in meane space,
Another beares the byrdes away,
He fiercely doth pursue the chase,
whilst others doe possesse the pray,
And so the end of louers gaine,
Is loathsome labour for their paine.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A plaine description of perfecte friendship.

TRue friendship vnfained
Doth rest vnrestrayned,
No terrour can came it:
Not gaining, nor losing.
Nor gallant gay glosing,
can euer reclaime it.
In paine, and in pleasure,
The most truest treasure.
That may be desyred,
Is loyall loue deemed.
Of wisedome esteemed,
and chefely required.
Finis.

An Inuectiue against couetous persons.

AS after Sommer winter comes,
so age doth youth insue:
And after age comes sicknes in,
then death doth life subdue,
And after death the winding sheete,
which bringes vs to the graue,
This is the state of mortall men,
this is the end they haue.
Wherefore doe men then heape vp coyne,
and hord it vp so fast,
why doe they care for worldly much,
as life would euer last.
why doe they take such paines for thee.
which they must leaue behind.
To them that will dispearse the same,
as chaffe against the winde.
Page  [unnumbered]

Of fayned friendship.

AS Swallowes doe in Sommer time appeare,
And in the winter cold cannot be seene,
So faithles friendes will vnto vs draw neare,
so long as welth doth flourish fresh and greene,
But when that fayles, then farewell friendship to,
All is for gaine, that these vile vipers do.

The commodities of Mariage.

IF mariage bring a wife,
the wife good children bringes,
Those children happy life,
of happy life loue springes,
Of loue eternall ioy,
of ioy doth health proceede,
Of health long lyfe for aye.
loe this is mariage meede,

In contrarium.

If mariage bring a wife,
the wie ill children bringes,
Those children endles strife,
of strife all hatred springes,
Of hatred care and greefe,
through care doth sicknesse come,
Through sicknesse death in breefe.
lo this is all the somme.
Finis.

Of the wickednesse of women and howe prone they are to the procatious of the flesh.

IOue on a day disposde to iest,
with Iuno for delight,
Page  [unnumbered] The wicked wiles of womens wits,
in wordes did plaine resite.
And said that they to fleshly lustes,
more subiect were then men.
Iuno denyde, to haue it tryde,
they craued iudgement then.
And for because Tiresias had,
both man and woman bin,
Supposing him the metest man,
and most expert therein,
They did elect him for their iudge,
the truth thereof to trye:
He sentence past with Iupiter.
and boldly did replye,
That women were the wantonner,
although for shame they sought,
For to conceale from open shew.
what was their secret thought.
But Iuno as the nature is,
of all the femine sect,
When as she saw Tiresias did
her wished will reiect,
In giuing so his sentence graue,
contrary to her mind,
(Inflamde with yre to worke reuenge,)
she made Tiresias blinde,
Therefore I must of force conclude,
that neither fury fell,
Nor Serpent dyre, not Tiger fierce,
nor all the fiendes in hell.
May more torment the mind of man,
or worke his wretched woe:
So much as can one wicked wench,
in whome doth fury floe.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

What small trust there is to be reposed in friendes or kinsfolkes.

SIth friendship is as rare a thing to finde,
As tis to see a Swanne all black of hue:
Wise Esope in his Fables as we finde,
Doth warne vs well to thinke no friend so true.
That will be prest, our pleasure to fulfill,
So redily as we the same require,
For why in trust is treason tried still,
And fairest lookes doe lack the best desyre:
Wherefore (saith he) let no man trust his friend,
To doe the thing which he himselfe may doe,
For feare he be deceaued in the end,
By those whome he hath leaned most vnto,
For profe whereof a Fable he resightes,
which who so notes, shall find to great effect,
The fraude of friendes he plainly there resites,
who to their promise haue but small respect.
A Larke there was vpon a certaine tyme,
That trained vp her yong ones in a feild,
Where Corne did grow, which then was euen in prime,
To be cut downe as ripe, the Larke to sheild
Her little ones from harme, when as she went
Abrode to get such meate as should suffice
To feede them with, did giue commaundement,
That they should haue regard in any wise
To that they heard, and at her back returne,
To tell her all: it hapned on a day,
whilst she was forth, that thether came the Borne,
which ought the field, which to his sonne did say,
This geare is ripe and ready to be cut,
wherefore to morrow go thou in my name,
Unto our friendes, and them in mind doe put
To come and helpe me to dispatch the same.
Page  [unnumbered] which charge his son dischargde in each respect,
whereto his friends in friendly wise did frame
Their aunswere straight, that they would not neglect,
To worke his will when night approched was,
This Larke come home her byrds did flitter fast,
About her all and shewing what did pas,
Desyred her, that she in all the haste,
wold them transport vnto some other place,
But she perswading them to be content,
Commaunded them next day to lend good eare,
To that they heard, and so awaye she went.
Next day in Field the farmer doth appeare,
with Sim his sonne, where all that day they spent,
But of his friendes there came not one of all,
wherefore vnto his sonne againe he said,
To morrow to my Cosines goe you shall,
And say that I require their friendly ayde,
To reape my corue: the yong ones hearing this,
More earnest were with their beloued damme,
To be remoued from thence, but she ywis,
Did let it slip vntill the next day came,
For why quoth she, no cosins are so kinde,
That by and by will come at kinsemans call,
To morrow therefore marke what newes you find,
And then if neede require, Ile helpe you all.
Next day the Cosins came not into place,
wherefore the good man sayd, all friendes farewell,
And kinsmen to, now will I chaunge the case,
And trust no trifling tale that they shall tell,
Trust to our selues we will, go thou my soune,
Prouide to sickles for thy selfe and me,
And by our selues it shall to morne be done.
when as the Larke hard this, nay now quoth she,
Tis time indeede to pack away from hence,
Unles we will each one destroyed be,
And so she bare her little ones from thence,
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A Letter written by a yong maiden to a Louer of hers, wherein she detecteth the trechery of many men, and their great dissimu∣lation.

THe crow would seeme a milk white swan to be,
So likewise would the pratling rooke appeare,
Like Iunos byrd, which cannot well agree,
For kind bewrayes his craft, this is most cleare
yea Copper oft in Siluer is inclosde,
In glittering gold, great store of drosse doth bide,
In purest shels, as triall hath disclosde,
Carnels corrupt, themselues 〈◊〉 often hide,
The wily wolfe we diuerse times do fynde,
In sheepes skin cloathde, and eake the dusty wall,
with hangings faire is hid, in humaine kinde,
We also see the like effect to fall,
For many a one there is, that makes a show,
Of perfect loue, when he meanes nothing lesse,
Men seeke to bring poore women to their bow,
And in the end to leaue them in distresse.
And for because I thought you one of those,
whose pleasure is pore women to deceiue,
with tatling tong you flatteringly can glose,
As by your deedes I dayly do perceaue,
I sent to you a flower for Flatterers fit,
Regarding naught how ye the same would take,
So free I am from biting on the bit,
As yet not drencht in Lady Venus lake.
If ought beside be done that you like ill,
And that the same in euill part you take,
Goe seeke your mendes you may whereas you will,
I reke you naught, this aunswere doe I make,
And though before, offence were none committed,
yet this your writing fond would it procure,
Page  [unnumbered] which hath full well with your demeanour fitted,
Being rude, and imprudent, and ill to indure,
No more I neede at this time here to say,
For well you may by this my mind perceiue,
yet of one thing I warne you by the way,
That with vaine hope your selfe you not deceiue,
And so to conclude, I bid you adue,
wishing you aduisedly my letters to view.

A yong man enamoured of a very fayre Gentlewoman, declareth the dollorous passions that he suffereth for her sake, and craueth mercy at her handes.

THe more I looke vppon her louely face,
whose like before dame nature neuer framde,
The more I like, and long to liue in grace,
Of her that may Pandora well be namde,
whose deedes as due, the highest place haue claimde,
A Phenic rale, she may be tearmed right,
That so surmountes each other earthly wight.
Of Silke and Siluer, seemes her heare to be,
Her teeth of pearle, her eyes of Christall cleare,
Her lippes of Ruby, wrought in each degree,
She doth excell, and vaunteth voide of peere,
Her like did neuer liue, that I could heare,
who would not then accompt himself in blis,
That might inioy, so rare a iem as this,
Sir Aleran as may by bookes appeare,
A sily Sacon, sought her loue to gaine
That was the Emperour Othos Daughter deare,
And did in fine his wished will obtaine,
She graunted grace to quite his carefull paine,
And fearing nought her fathers furious yre.
Page  [unnumbered] Did yield her hart all whole at his desyre.
And Acharisto he but basely borne,
Besought the loue of fayre Euphimia
who seemed nought his courtesy to scorn,
Though she were Queene of riche corinthia,
Yong Iason eke obtained Medea,
who though she knew not him nor his estate,
Forsooke her friendes to be his matched mate.
A million more I might alledge of those.
That did by seeking soone obtayne their will,
And when they were bewrapt in wretched woes.
Had speedy helpe to shield themselues from ill,
which otherwise their youthfull dayes would spill,
yea some we see from seruill state aduaunst,
By worthy dames whose grace to gaine they chaunst.
Then speake and speede, be still and want thy hyre,
For many a time and oft I haue hard say,
And sometime proude, that he that would aspire,
To that which will doth wish, the wisest way,
Is to expulse dispayre which makes men stray,
Farre from the path of perfect peace and rest,
Sith Fortune still, doth helpe the bouldest best.
For can the Leach recure his pacientes paine,
Before he see from whence his greefe doth grow,
Or can the Lawyer pleade a matter plaine,
Unles to him, his case the client show,
Then should this dainty dame on me bestow
Her loyall loue before she trye my truth,
The meetest meane to moue her mind to ruth.
Then welcome hope, and foolish feare farewell,
Farewell all care, and welcome pleasaunt ioy,
Page  [unnumbered] That guilefull gest no more with me shall dwell,
That would my helth and happy hap destroy.
What should I doubt, sith she is nothing coy,
Her gentle hart can not his hurt procure,
That for her sake would any death indure.
On her my health, on her my happy dayes,
Doe whole depend, on her my myrth or mone,
My welth or wo, my paine or pleasure stayes,
My lyfe and death doth rest in her alone,
By her I must, alas, or else by none,
Receaue releefe, and hope to haue redresse,
Of all the paines that doe my mind oppresse.
And as her bewty brane bindes me to loue,
So doth her courtious countinaunce comfort yielde,
And as the paine I feele my mind doth moue,
So hope perswades that grace shall gaine the field,
But hap what may, both loue and paine that builde
Their bower in brest, my sorrowes so renue,
That forst I am for grace to seeke and sue.
Behold therefore deare dame thy seruaunt heare,
Lies prostrate at thy feete to pleade for grace,
Oh rue my state let pittie plaine appeare,
For thou alas haste brought me in such case,
As if I find not fauour in thy face,
Like one that loathes his lyfe I wish my graue
To quench the cares which doe my health depraue.
The bale I bide, I would right happy count,
And thinke my selfe in Paradice to be,
Yea in good hap all others to surmount,
might it but please you once to deeme of me
As I deserue, and graciously agree,
To take me for your seruaunt, slaue or swayne,
Page  [unnumbered] Whose mind to please, I would refuse no payne.
Few wordes will serue a righteous cause to pleade,
If Iudge be iust, by whome it must be tryde,
How said I? what shall I her dealing dread,
No no, I know she will not shrinke aside,
From reasons rule, at any time or tide,
But render me my due deserued hyre,
Which is the somme of all my whole desyre.
Who serues, deserues, his recompence to haue,
Who truely loues, ought to be loude againe,
Whose greefes are great, must needes a medicine craue,
Or else permit himselfe to pine in paine,
Let me deare dame my guerdon then obtaine,
And doe not now in lew of lasting loue,
with deepe disdaine, my rash attempt reproue.
Finis.

Certaine Verses written in commendation of the Nut cornell.

AS late for my delight,
when dumpes opprest my minde,
I walkte abrode the pleasaunt fieldes,
in hope some helpe to fynde,
By chaunce I lighted then,
Upon a huge great wood,
whereas in rankes right goodly trees,
of sundry sortes there stoode,
There were of large and lofty Okes,
great store in euery place,
Of Aspe and Elme, with byrche and Boxe,
where euer I did trace.
Page  [unnumbered] There was great store of Holly to,
of willow asp and ew,
And all the ground was clad with flowers,
of sundry sent and hue.
Amongest the rest of Philberts fayre,
was plenty euery where,
And euery thing that hart could wish,
a man might find it there,
Then from this Philbert tree I pluct,
A cluster that were clong,
Togither fast in seemely sort,
as on the tree they hung,
And when I had them in my hand,
not knowing how to vse them,
I was at last by reason taught,
betwirt my teeth to bruse them,
which hauing done I found therein,
A Cornell fayre enclosde,
which for to be of pleasaunt tast,
I also then supposde.
And found it so, for in my life,
I neuer tasted thing,
More pleasaunt then the Cornell was,
which from that tree did spring,
The Philbert Cornel is a dish,
for any Princes meete,
And they that of the same will tast,
shall find it wondrous sweete.
Aboue all other kinds of fruite,
the philbert in my minde,
Doth seeme most pleasaunt in the tast,
as they that proue shall find,
Such vertue in this cornel is,
that I haue heard men say,
Phisitions vse it many times,
their patientes paines to stay,
Page  [unnumbered] For many thinges this cornel is,
commodious yet beside:
As they can witnesse wondrous well,
that haue the vertue tryde.
And therefore as I did begin,
euen so I will not misse,
To say that of all fruict the best,
the Philbert cornel is.
Finis.

A Louer hauing long concealed his loue, at the lastre. uealeth it, and craueth fauour at the handes, of his beloued mistres.

OFt haue I seene in others, and sometime proued it in my selfe, that want of audacity, and feare of repulse, hath broughte manye cares into the minde, and greeuous thoughtes into the head. which being reueled and manifested to the causer thereof, the party greeued hath fed on ioy, wholye bathed in plea∣sure, and receiued worthy consolation, wherefore calling to remembraunce this saying of Seneca, that hee whiche feares, and suffers opportunity to slip, when hee knoweth the wight that can cure him, may wel be accompted a wil∣full destroyer of himself.

Expulsing feare, I haue at the last aduentured to craue a remedy at your handes, on whome my helpe wholy de∣pendeth, whose wisedome and curtesy being suche as can easily by outward Iestures, perceiue the inward meaning of the mind, and by secrete signes and priuy practises, soone perceiue where good will and affection is fixed. It were superfluous to vse anye large discourse in declaring what great loue I beare vnto you, whiche by howmuche it is of longer continuaunce, by so much is it more extreame, and my tormentes thereby the more intollerable. For as fyre the longer it lyeth couered, the more forcible it is, when it Page  [unnumbered] bursteth out, and harder to be quenched, so loue the longer it is lodged in any man, and conceled, the more vehement it is, and more difficult to be suppressed. Seeing then that my lyfe being onely sustayned by the fauour of your de∣uinegraces, cannot be maintained one onely minute of an hower, without the liberall helpe of your sweetenesse and vertue, I beseech you, (if the harty prayers of any mortall tormented man, may euer haue force and power to mooue you to pitty) that it may please you of your rare clemencye and accustomed courtesy, with the dew of grace proceeding from your seemely selfe, to redeeme from henceforth youre seruauntes moste miserable and afflicted mind from death or martirdome, by reaping the fruite of his vnfayned affection, as his heartchieflye de∣syreth.

Page  [unnumbered]

A Louer whose friend for his sake was frowardlye delte withal, writeth vnto her, to perswade her with pacience, to suffer it for a season.

AS one bewrapt in wastefull wo,
in dryry dread I stand,
Least that my shippe on Rocks should rend,
or perrish in the Sand.
Least blustring blastes should drint my barke.
to vnacquainted shore,
Least swelling waues should soke it so,
as naught may it restore,
To former state and strength againe,
least foes of forrein land?
should make encounter with my men,
that may not long withstand.
Or least with song some Siren should,
the pilate so allure,
As by that meanes, his losse and mine,
vnwisely he procure,
A thousand thoughtes in head do swarme,
which will not me permit,
Ne night nor day my rest to take,
as nature deemes it fitte,
You are the ship, whose safety so,
my hart hath euer sought,
you are the Barke for whose mishaps,
my head with care is fraught.
Such craggy cliftes, such greedy gulfes,
such sundry sortes of Sandes,
Such daungers great, such perrilous portes,
am idst your passage standes,
Such whirling winds, such blustering blastes,
which cleane contrary blow,
Page  [unnumbered] Such tempestes straunge, such wallowing waues,
about you still doe flowe.
Such syrens with their subtill songes,
allure your pilate still:
I meane your mother that thereby,
she seekes to worke you ill.
Such homebred hatefull hellish hagges,
such friendly fawning foes,
whose priuie mallice prickes farre worse,
then bryre amidst the rose.
which breedes my bale, and to my mind,
doth dayly bring vnrest,
For feare least you by their despight,
should be to much opprest,
But sith as yet I see no way,
these euils to preuent,
with perfect pacience arme your selfe,
till helpe from God be sent,
And pray to him with hart and voyce,
to further my desyre,
which once obteind, doubt not to fynde,
such rest as you require,
And thereby be in such estate,
as they that now deuise,
To worke your wo, to gaine good will,
shall then all meanes deuise,
Thus leauing now for lack of time,
a long discourse to make.
I bid adue, and kisse this scroule,
that you in hand 〈◊〉 take,
Hoping it shall as thankfully,
of you receaued be,
As I desyre most willingly,
your hart from harme to free.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

An admonition to Maisters, how they should behaue themselues towardes their seruauntes.

THose whome we feare we cannot loue,
And whome we loue, not them we hate,
And whome we hate, we would remoue.
From former health and happy state,
And trapping them in traiterous snare,
In steede of ioy inioyne them care.
Let such therefore as maysters be,
And haue the charge of many men,
To them be courtious, franke and free,
And well they shall be serued then,
Loude and obayde with faithfull hart,
As they doe merite by desarte.
But such as seeke by rigorous wise,
To be obaide and fearde of all,
Their seruauntes will them much despise,
And seeke all meanes to worke their thrall,
Although for feare they doe obay,
Thus proofe shewes plainely euery day.
Finis.

A yong man finding her to whome he had plighted pro∣mise, to be fraught with another mans fruicte, wrighteth vnto her as follo∣weth.

ALl is not Gold that glistereth fayre,
Nor all thinges as it seemes to be,
Fayre hangings hide the dusty wall,
So doth the barke the hollow 〈◊〉,
Page  [unnumbered] The flower that fayrest seenes in sight,
Hath not alwayes the sweetest smel,
But time that bringes all thinges to light,
And doubtfull dread from mind expell,
Hath tryde thy treason and my truth,
Thy seeret slightes it doth detect.
Yea time hath now bewrayde thy wiles,
Thy wauering wit, thy small respect
To plighted vow, thy cloked craft,
Thy filthy life so close concealde,
Thy double dealing diuelish driftes
And 〈…〉ild desires it hath reuealde,
Unto my praise and thy reproche,
But who would looke for other gaine,
At handes of her in whome no truth
Did euer yet vouchsafe to raine,
Like as the Siren with her songs,
And Crocadile with dolefull cryes,
Procures the Pilat to approch.
The place where greatest perrill lyes,
So hast thou longled me to loue,
And like of thee aboue the rest,
By flattering wordes by fayned vowes,
And meere good will which thou profest.
But wordes are wind I well perceaue,
And womens vowes are made in vaine,
Their wauering wits delight in chaunge,
And reason neuer rules the raine,
Excuses now shall serue no more.
To bleare mine eyes as they haue done,
Thy filthy fact bewrayes thy loe,
For which great shame thou shalt not shon,
The wine another 〈…〉ioyde,
To me the dregges thou mind〈…〉 to leaue,
But thinke not so, for if thou doe,
Thou greatly doest thy selfe deceaue,
Page  [unnumbered] No mistresse, no, to yield to that,
Be sure ye shall not me compell,
I neede not one to tast my meate,
My selfe can serue the turne full well,
Let him therefore that sowde the seede,
Enioy the fr〈…〉e thereof ac will,
His last is fittest for thy foote,
To ro•• thy Barge he best can skill.
Finis.

A Letter written to a yong widdowe, that was before matched with a very olde man, perswading her to make choyse of one whose yeares weare more agreeable with her owne.

MIstresse, if I thought it necessarye for you to morne for the death of your dead Hus∣band, or if his lyfe had bene so delightfull vnto you, as his death was happy for him∣selfe, (because thereby he was not onelye cid of the great torments that his pore af∣flicted body sustayned in this world, but also attained to a more blessed life in the kingdom of heauen) I wold neither blame you for wishīg him aliue again, or perswade you frō lamenting his death (though I know it is nothing auayle¦able) but rather would exhort you thereunto, and with teares, (as an vnfayned friende) helpe you to bewayle the losse of so comfortable a Companyon. But seing he was old, angry, weake, impotent, and continually so afflic∣ted with sicknesse as he was; and you so yong and comlye a gentle woman as you are, you haue no cause to lamente his losse, or be sorry for his death; seeing it pleased God, by calling him to his mercy, both to release him of paine, and 〈…〉se yon of 〈◊〉 great trouble long sustained with him, and Page  [unnumbered] therefore I would wish you to shake of the vaine Ceremo¦nies, that in such causes are commonlye vsed, and frame your selfe againe to that blessed estate of matrimony, cha∣sing one, who as well in yeares as otherwise, may be more agreeable to your seemelye selfe, then your late husbande, whose old age, was rather & corsy then a comforte to your hart, being in nothing correspondent to your minde, or meete for your personage, for so ought euery true christian woman to doe, as well for procreation of Children, as for other necessary commidities incident therevnto, whereof by meanes of your greater yeares, and more often excercise in worldly affayres, you haue better experience then I, and as you are not ignoraunt how conuenient it is to marrye and how inconuenient to leade a single life, so am I well assured that you are not to learne what kind of person were most meete for you to match with all.

The Discommodities growing by the companye of an old man you haue already, to your paine, ouer long experi∣mented, and therefore I doubte not, but you will beware how ye light on the like againe.

And to marry with a yong man, vnlesse it bee one, of whose demanour you haue made some tryall, maye be as perrillous as the other, for if he be ritch, he will ouer rule you, if he be prodigall, he will waste your substaunce, and his owne patrimony, if he be couetous, he will keepe you bare, and withhold from you that which is necessary to be had, if he be laiu••uhe will leaue you, and like better of others: Finally, if he be viciously bent, how ritch or yong sooner he be, yet were you better to be buried then matched with him.

Let n〈…〉 them the vayne vanities of the worlde so allure you, or the perswasion of your friendes beare suche swaye with you, as you will thereby be moued to take one for his w〈…〉 whome ye cannot loue, and to refuse him whome ye well like of, for want o〈◊〉▪ considering what incon∣〈…〉 groweth by the 〈◊〉, and what pro〈…〉 may arys Page  [unnumbered] of the other, waying withall, how great an offence both to Bad and your owne conscience it is, to do a thing so con∣tracy to your own liking.

Wherefore it were best for you to make choyse of some poore yong man, whose condicions and behauioure is al∣ready partly knowen vnto you to be good; with whom you may with a contented minde, leade a quiet and peaceable lyfe, and haue all thinges at your owne desyre, without in∣terruption.

And if I thought not my selfe to sy〈…〉le, for one so wor∣thy as you are. I would both offer my selfe 〈◊〉 you, (not as a Husbande, but as a Steward, to do al thinges at your direction,) and also hazard my lyfe to obtain such fauour at your handes, assuring you, that if it might so please you, to accept of me, you should of a pore friend, finde mee so faith∣full, so conformable to your will, so carefull for your wel∣fare, so redy to please you, and so loth to offend you, as you shall not haue cause eyther to thinke your loue euill implot¦ed, or repent you of the election of so base a personage.

And although in byrth I be farre inferiour, and in wealth nothing comparable vnto those that I knowe you maye haue, if you please, yet dare I thus much vaunt of my selfe, that there is not in the whole worlde, any one that woulde more loue, esteeme, and cherish you, then I would do, if my hap might be so good to inioy you.

And if my purpose be not as my wordes doe pretend, and my deedes agreeable with my promises, I wishe the earth might gape and swallow me vp, or fyre from heauen con∣sume me, for I protest vnto you before God, from whome no secretes are concealed, that it is not so much for youre welth or liuing that I desyre you, as for your wisedome, curtesy, comly behauyour, and other commendable ver∣tues that abound in you, wherefore long before youre husbandes departure, I was so greatly enamoured, as if feare of your displeasure, and mine owne infamie had not deteined me with the raines of reason, I had long since re∣uealed Page  [unnumbered] it vnto you. But now that time hath offred mee so meete opportunity, as I maye more lawfully, and wyth lesse daunger do it, I haue presumed though peraduenture more rashly then beseemeth me, yet not withoute vrgente cause, to manifest my meaning vnto you, crauing both par¦don for my bold attempt and easemente of my sorrowe so long sustayned for the loue of you, which withoute yours grace or mine owne great perrill, cannot possible bee re∣pressed, wherefore hoping of your accustomed clemency, to find you fauourable in the furtheraunce of my desyre. I do wholy commit my health lyfe and liberty vnto you, whom I doe and will faithfully serue and obay for euer, as your moste humble seruaunt.

A pretty fancy of the fynding of a Whyte, wherein is collourablely included the course of a Captiue Lo∣uer, in purchasing his desyred purpose.

NOt long agoe with bow in hande,
and arrowes by my syde:
An Archer like I went abrode,
my cunning to haue tride,
And being entred in the field,
〈◊〉 cast mine eye a 〈◊〉,
And loc a goodly glistering whyte,
before my face did glaunce,
Which pleasaunt sight did please me so,
as to suruay the same,
Me thought it did my hart much good,
and was my greatest game,
Narcissus fond did neuer ga••,
Upon his shadow more,
Nor by the Image which he made,
Pigmallyon set such store.
As I did by that 〈…〉y wbyte,
which so reuiude my hart,
Page  [unnumbered] As whilst it was within my sight,
I felt no paine nor smart.
But if I once did turne awaye
from it my dazeling eyes,
Good Lord: what cares within my brest,
did by and by arise.
So that as one berefte of sence,
as still as any stone:
I stoode at last and could not sturre,
But stared still vppon,
This passing white, much like to those,
whome worthy Perseus made,
For to behold grim Gorgons head,
that causde their force to fade.
And turnde them all to stockes of stone,
for their outragious pride,
In seeking causelesse his decay,
whome Ioue himselfe did guide,
Then rusht in reason by and by,
in comly collours clad:
And calde alowde, to cause me heare,
that earst no hearing had,
And when I was againe reuiude.
with countinaunce graue and sad,
why standst thou sencelesse thus,
beholding of the thing,
That still the more thou lookest thereon,
the more thy paine doth spring.
Lookes will not serue, to swage thy greefe,
they rather cause thy care,
Therefore to put my wordes improofe,
see thou thy selfe prepare:
Resort with speede to pitties place,
intreate her for to wrighte,
Some piteous plaint in thy behalfe,
to shew thy painfull plight,
Page  [unnumbered] To Lady bewty, that she may,
When she hath tryde thy truth,
Receiue thee as her seruaunt iust,
and on thy wo haue ruth,
Then teaching me which way I should,
the path to pitty finde,
And how I might in eche respect,
declare to her my minde.
She went her way I know not how,
but I to gaine releefe:
And purchase that which was in deede,
my ioy and comfort cheefe.
Did euery thing as she had wild,
and when I had obtainde,
At pitties hand my bill of plaint,
Straight wayes my steppes I straind,
To bewties bower and there ariude,
and knocking at the gate,
Straight started out an ongly wighte,
whose hart did harbour hate.
He asked me what was my will,
and why I did resorte
Unto that place, to whome in breefe,
I made a true reporte
Of all my state, and why I came,
which done he sayde to me.
Alas pore Lad thou arte vnwise,
and voyde of skill I see:
what thinkest thou heare to purchase ease,
no no thou art deceaude,
Therefore depart, or else be sure,
thy wo will soone be weaude,
My mistresse she to lofty lookes,
to lende an eare to thee,
She will not harken to thy sut,
but if thou earnest be,
Page  [unnumbered] And moue her minde with many wordes,
in Dungion deepe be sure
Thou shalt be cast, and during lyfe,
with daunger there indure,
where sadnesse shall assayle thee still,
and sorrow seeke to share
Thy vitall thread, yet shalt thou liue,
and leade thy lyfe in care.
So long as destinies doe permit,
beware therefore I say,
Take heede in tyme, turne backe againe,
and seeke some surer way.
These wordes did fill my hart with feare,
and made me doubt to doe
The thing which comfort did commaund,
and fancy forst me to.
And had not hope bene hard at hande,
to harte me herein:
Dispayre had put me from that place,
such force his wordes did winne:
And in this sort sayde Hope to me,
Fond foole why doest thou flye,
The pleasaunt plot wherein thy rest,
and happy health doth lye.
Retourne againe, and feare thou nought,
thy practise put in proofe,
To Lady Bewty moue thy sete,
as best for thy behoofe.
For such her gracious goodnesse is,
as neuer will she bide,
That any suffer bale for ought,
but that when time hath tryde,
His true intent she will vouchsafe,
to him his hartes desyre
In eache respect, assure thy selfe,
then hope for happy hyre,
Page  [unnumbered] I gaue her thankes for good aduice,
and sayd I would obay:
Wherewith she brought me to desyre,
who made no longer stay.
But led me vnto Bewties bower,
and bad me there attend:
Till she with all her traine came sorth,
and meekely then to bende
My knee, in offering vp the bill,
vnto her gracious hande,
Desyring her to view the same,
my mynde to vnderstande.
Which I obserude in eache respect,
my bill she doth detaine,
God graunt it worke so good effect,
as I some hope may gaine.
To purchase that which pleaseth me,
much more then all the Golde
That Midas or King Crossus had,
my ioyes might not be tolde,
If I inioyde that Iewell rars,
That pearle, that precious whyfe,
Which though it clad my corpes with care,
doth yeeld me great delight,
And if Dame bewties curtesy,
commit the same to me,
How much I would accoumpte thereof,
she would perceiue and see,
As Diamond deare I would it set,
in collour of my hart,
And keepe it still with busy care,
till death doe cleane conuert,
My corpes to clay from whence it came,
and leaue me voyde of lyfe,
Ye heauenly powers then graunt it me,
to make my ioyes more ryfe.
Page  [unnumbered]

How Altamenes hauing vnwares slaine his owne Father Cartareus died for sorrow, when he had know∣ledge thereof.

IN Crete which now we Candie call
a fertill fruitfull Land,
One cartareus sometime raignde,
and Septure bare in band.
Who had to sonne a noble youth,
a stoute and vallyaunt knight,
In prowes proude to haue no peere,
and Altamenes highte
This yong mans name, who being then
desirous for to know
What destiny should to him betide,
the Oracle did show.
That he should cause his fathers death,
which sentence when he heard,
Desyrous for to shun the same,
with speede himselfe preparde
To go and dwell at Camiros,
which towne in Rodes doth stand,
But that which God pretended hath,
no Creature may withstande:
For after in a little space,
Cartareus for to see,
His sonne desyring very muche,
such lucklesse lotte had hee,
That he by might at Camiros,
ariued on this sorte;
But with the there inhabitauntes,
as wrighters doe reporte,
His men then falling at debate,
whereby a tumult rose,
Page  [unnumbered] In which was Altamenes then,
to cause his treble woes,
And siue his Father vnawares,
which when he vnderstoode,
A shamed sore, and halfe dismayde,
he went with heauy moode.
To wander in the wildernesse,
and daungerous desertes wide,
Where after many pittious plaintes,
at last for dole he dide.
Finis.

The Authour writeth this in commendation of his mistresse.

YOu Ladyes now leaue of your strife,
For Golden fruicte without delay,
And thou that art Vulcanus wife,
resigne the same with speede I say,
To mistresse mine, that doth deserue,
for to possesse the same by right,
From this my hest seeme not to swetue,
Least thou be forst in open sight
Perforce to yeeld it vnto her,
and so be put to open shame,
Let not thy God head make thee erre,
If thou wilt shun all blot and blame,
It is not all thy glory great,
Nor yet thy soune Cupido he,
That makes thee so with pryde replease,
Or else thy fathers high degree,
That may my mistresse once distaine
In any point, who doth thee passe
As farre as Golde doth copper plaine,
Or perfect Emrod brittle glasse.
Page  [unnumbered] As farre as Phebus doth surmount,
The starre that lendes least light of all,
Aboue thy reache then doe not mount,
Least thou receaue the greater fall,
To her good Grisell may giue place,
Though great her pacicnce were in deede,
And constant Constance in like case,
For Constance doth them both exceede,
Her name and deedes so well agree,
That they doe varry in no thing,
In sooth it is a ioye to see,
The vertues that from her doe spring,
I know when she meete time shall see,
On any one to fyxe her harte,
She will like chaste penelope,
Continue his till life depart,
That flattering wordes or fyled phrase,
Or golden giftes, or greedy gaine,
Her constant mind shall neuer crase,
Or make her chaunge her former frame,
That vallyaunt deedes done for her sake,
Nor fetured for me, nor fine deuice,
Shall cause her flye from chosen make.
Or to fond folly her intice,
That neither Fortune good nor bad,
Nor store of wealth nor wofull wante,
Nor smyling cheare, nor countinaunce sad,
Nor absence shall obliuion plance.
That neither threats nor lowring lookes,
Nor dread of daunger shall her draw,
From him whom fyrst for friend shee takes,
No man may keepe her so in awe,
No greefe can gripe her hart so sore,
No paine can pinche her so, that she
Will leaue her faithfull friend therefore,
How hase of byrth so eare he be▪
Page  [unnumbered] Though this I haue not yet seene proude,
I am right sure it will be so,
For neuer saw I her mindemoude,
With trifling tales for friend nor for,
That she would take in hande the thing.
Which was contrary cleane to right,
but euen as vnder vertues wing,
She had bine trainde, she seemes in sight,
Thrise happy therefore shall he bee,
Whose happe shall be so good to get,
This precious Iewell franke and free,
That will by him so highly set.
And will not any tyme neglect,
The duty of a louing wife,
but please hir minde in eche respecte,
Still studying to inlarge his lyfe.
And blest am I aboue the rest,
That haue obtainde to be her man,
who purpose still to doe my ett,
To please her mind in all I can
Finis.

An Exhortation to Pacience.

VVHen griping geefes do greeue the minde,
The nicetest meanes that men may finde,
which God and nature hath assignde,
Is pacience well applyde:
For pacience puts all paine to flight,
Yea pacience makes the hart delight,
And doth reuiue eche dulled spright,
by reasons rule and guyde.
For euery sore, a salue it is.
It turnes all bitter bale to blisse,
And he that hath it, shall not misse.
Page  [unnumbered]
To tast of heauenly ioyes.
Through it the miser likes his lyfe,
Through it he bydes his brawling wife,
Through it he flies all hate and stryfe,
And nothing him anoyes.
Through it he suffers false reports,
And loathes to liue in lawlesse Courtes,
Yea patience dayly him exhortes,
To hold himselfe content:
And though his happe be good or ill,
Yet being armde with patience still.
No euill once he shall fulfill,
But be to betrue bent.
Therefore for paclence let vs pray,
To driue all drowsy dumpes away,
That euery hower doth vs anndy,
Through froward frowning fate,
For ext we are on euery syde,
Not knowing safely where to yde,
And therefore lacke so good a guyde,
To better our estate.
God graunt vs euer of his grace,
That perfect pacience to imbrace,
We may be moude in euery case,
And flye all utious yre.
Let pacience put vs still in mynde,
And make vs hope good hap to fynde,
when moste with cares we are combynde,
To kindle good desyre.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A Louer writing to his chosen friend, who for his sake susteyned much sorrow, exhorteth her to conti∣nue constant, and paciently to tollerate her present aduersity in hope that better happes will insue.

MIne owne good Pamena, when on the one syde I consyder with my selfe, thy in∣comparable curtesy, in requiting my faith full and vnfained affection with the lyke, and graunting me principall possession of thy harte, and on the other side remem∣bring the sorrow thou sustainest, through ye vnnatural dea∣ling of such, as vnder shew of friendship, intende nothing but fraude.

And therewithall waying my vnhabillity at this pre∣sent, which will not serue to prouide for thee as I would, my ioy, for inioying thee that arte my onelye salace is not halfe so great, as my grefes are greeuous for the sorrowe thou sustainest, but for as much as paciēce as Cicero saith, is such a vertue as it comforteth the heauye, reioyceth the sad, contenteth the pore, helpeth the sick, easeth the payne∣full, and hurteth none, but helpeth all, I exhort you to im∣brace it, and to the vttermost of your power to vse it, com∣forting your self in this callamitie, with assured hope, that after these harde happes, will follow a more blisseful and quiet estate, considering the mutabillitie of Fortune to be such, that she neuer standeth long at one stay, but as after a moste terrible storme, alwaies insueth a more pleasaunt calme, so she seeming most extreme, will on the sodaine waxe moste fauourable, as appeareth by the Example of one Adulatia Daughter to Otho, the thyrde Emperour of that name, who firing 〈◊〉 fancy vpon one Aleran, a Gen∣tleman of small accoumpte, and the yongest of all the bre∣theren Page  [unnumbered] of the Duke of Saxony, who lykewise loued her in∣tyrely, lefte her father, friendes and countrey, for his sake, and wandring with him, vnto whome she wholy commit¦ted her selfe, into places vnknown, and in the way as they fled, being taken and spoyled by theeues, and robbers, and afterwardes forced for extreame neede, to make coles, and sell them for their owne sustenaunce, pacientlye suffering that miserable aduersity, and comforting themselues with hope of better happe in time to come, in the ende by Gods prouidence, and the vallyaunce of their yong Sonue, who by that meanes was made known to his Grandfather O∣tho, they were remoued from that miserable estate, aduan∣ced to high dignity, and made beyres to the Empyre.

By this worthy Example, it appeareth howe carefull God is for the preseruation of those, that paciently suffe∣ring aduersity, doe put their whole trust and confidence in him, nothing at all dispayring of his mercy, but hoping by his onely meanes to be deliuered from all their callamity, which hope he will not leaue frustrate, and though he suf∣fer them for a season so to be a fllieted, yet will he not giue them ouer, but in the end, when they least looke for it, will to their great ioy and comfort, bring them to a more happy and blissefull state, as he did the good Earle of Engers, and in any other that paciently suffered the Crosse that god had layde vpon them, and reposed their whole trust in his mercy, which neuer fayleth the faithfull.

By this Historye of Adulatia wee are also admonished faithfully to loue, when promise is plighted, and neither for pleasure nor paine, for ioye nor anoy, for welth nor wo, for force nor feare, for fraude nor flattery, for friend nor foe in prosperitie or aduersitie, to alter our fyrste fyrme and faithfull determination, or forsake whome wee haue once chosen, so long as life lasteth, but constantlye to continue, and faithfully to perseuer in the same so shal God blesse vs and prosper all our doinges, and after the mistes of misery if any happen to assaile vs, bring vs to the cleare lighte of Page  [unnumbered] felicitye as he did fayre Adulatia, who neither for fearro fathers displeasure, or care to continue his good will, for loue of Imperiall dignity, or dread of any daunger, no, not for the fierce assaults of froward Fortune, or for any other cause would forsake her Aleran, but preferring his loyall loue, before all worldly pleasure, and his presents before al princely Ornamentes, both in health and sicknesse; in wealth and woe, and fynally at all assayes continued hys true and faithfull companion, for tearme of lyfe. Be fyrme therefore my good Parmena, and fayle not, but as I intend stil to continue as loyal a louer to thee, as euer was Aleran to his Adulatia, so be thou as faithful a friend vnto me, as was Adulatia to her beloued Aloran. So shall no emnity but am〈…〉 no repentance but contenentment, no 〈…〉ing, but ioy be euer betweene vs, and though one friendes frown vpon vs, or hindred contemne vs, and our Parentes re∣proue vs, yet through patient 〈◊〉, in trace of time which breedeth chaunge in all thinges, we shall by Codes helpe, and our owne dilligent iudultrye, recouer all for∣mer good will and fauour, and after all the assaul〈…〉 of aduerse Fortune, attaine to the happy porte of rest and tranquillity, with which hope I purpose alwayes to com∣fort my selfe, wishing you also to doe the like, as I 〈◊〉 you will, and hartily require you to doe, so neare as you can as well for your owne releefe, as for the rest and comforte of him that loueth you, no lesse then his owne proper lyfe, Fare you well.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

The Aucthour wrighting to a friend of his, that was toward mariage, exhorteth her to make choyse of a wyse and verteous person.

THere is nothing wherein we ought to take,
So great aduise, as sayeth 〈◊〉 wise,
As when we mind a mariage for to make,
wherein we must be carefull and presise,
Or else thereby great perrill may aryse,
Because the knot once 〈◊〉 in 〈◊〉 doe,
May not be broke, whateuer chaunce in sue.
But some there are, that will without respect
Of future harmes that may to them befall,
The councell of their aged friendes reiect,
As frantick wightes, to folish fancy thrall
And harkening to the S〈…〉 s•• the call,
Procure thereby, their 〈◊〉 and decay,
Where else they might haue liude in lasting 〈◊〉.
Yet would I not that women so attend,
To friendes aduice, or so by them be led,,
That fancy fixe vppon some faythfull friend,
They should forsake the same for feare or dread.
For so they may wone bring a foole to bed,
And being linckt, to one they cannot leeke,
be moude amisse reuengement due to seeke.
Some sortes there are, that welthy husbandes chuse,
Because they should maintaine thomsine and braue,
Some sortes there are, that others all refuse,
A comely wight desyring most to haue,
A vallyaunt venterns youth some 〈◊〉,
Some like of those that be most franke and free,
Page  [unnumbered] And some of those that harde and sparing be.
The gallant gay some chiefely doe esteeme,
In one that curteous is, some moste delight,
A cunning craftes man, some for best do deeme,
But few or none esteeme the vertuous wight,
By wise and prudent men they set but light,
Few linke for loue, but all for greedy gaine,
Though in the ende it tourne them most to paine.
Bewty doth fade, when crooked age creepes in,
And like a Flower the sommer season past,
Nipt with the cold when winter doth begin,
Doth wither soone, and weare a way at last,
And sicknesse makes the mighty man agast,
And takes from him all strength and courage quighte,
But vertue still abides in perfect plight.
In welth or wo in paine or pleasure still,
Uertue remaines without reprofe at all,
Not dreadfull death that doth the Carcas kill,
The power of vertue may in ought appall.
It liues with praise; and neuer perrish shall,
For after death his glory reflech rise,
That whilst he liude, did leade a vertuous life.
Therefore my friend I friendly thee aduise,
To match with one that is to vertue bent,
For bewty brittle is and of no prise,
Money but muck, and quickly will be spent,
Strength soone destroyde, if sicknesse so consent,
But vertue still in perfect state doth stand,
It keepes his course as well by Sea as land.
Moreouer I would wish thee for to make,
Thy choyse thy selfe whereas thou likest best,
Page  [unnumbered] And though thy friendes perswade thee for to take,
Some other wight with greater wealth possest.
Yet if thy mind and fancy be not prest,
To like of him, then would I thee aduise,
To leaue that loathsome lot if thou be wise.
For whereas loue doth lack, twice man and wife,
There harred needes must harbour in their hart,
Where hatred hath his holde, is endlesse strife,
where stryfe is styrde, there pleasure hath no part,
where pleasure is displaste; eare keepes the marte,
where care doth keepe, lyfe cannot long indure,
Then eare thou linke let loue be setled sure.
Finis.

Of the great patience and clemency of King Antigonus.

WHen as Antigonus did heare,
His Souldiers cursing him apace,
Because that in an euening darke,
He led them through a myry place,
That thence they hardly could escape,
He came himselfe to them vnknowne,
And very well did helpe them out,
which friendship when he had them showne,
He sayd now curse Antigonus,
That led you lately in the myre,
But pray for him that helpt you out,
Acording to your hartes desyre.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

What misery and misfortunes mankinde is continually subiecte vnto.

WHat kinde of state can any choose,
but he there in shall fynde,
Great bitternesse and endlesse woe,
to mooue his troubled minde,
In field much toyle, at home great care,
and feare in Forrein Lande:
If ought, we haue, by fortune lent.
In youth Dome Follyes hande
Doth hold vs fast, her she imbrace,
and wisedomes lore do leaue,
In age doth sickesse vs assayle,
and so our strength bereaue.
In marry age is vnquietnesse,
in lacking of a wife
All sollitary we remaine,
and leade a loathsome lyfe.
If God to vs doe children sende,
we haue continuall care.
If none, then are we halfe dismayde,
farre worser doe we fare.
Therefore one of these twaine is best,
desyred for to be:
Not to be borne; or else to dye,
before these dayes we see.
Finis.

A louer hauing long concealed his loue, at the last re∣uealeth it and craueth grace at the handes of his beloued mistresse.

LIke as the silly soule,
That feeles himself distrest,
Page  [unnumbered] With heauy burthen on his backe,
doth seeke to be at rest.
So I whome loue longtyme,
hath led in Captiue handes,
Enforced am at last to sue
for fauour at thy handes,
That hast my hart in holde,
who onely mayst apply,
Some pleasaunt potion to a swage
the greeuous mallady,
Which long with little ease,
and most incessaunt greefe.
Hath me conserude, twixt life and death,
denoyde of all releefe.
But needes I must confesse,
There is no fault in thee:
That I doe want my wished will,
the blame doth bide in mee.
For feare, Loues mortall foe,
which caused me to hyde
My secrete sorrowes long sustainde,
from thee in whome doth byde,
The cure of all my care,
hath made me faile to finde,
The thing that most might ioy my harte,
and ease my troubled minde.
But now all feare expulst,
Loue, hope; and hote desyre,
Hath forced me in lew of paine,
to craue deserued hyre.
Which gwerdon either graunt,
else shalt then shortly see,
That life will leaue my leathsome corpes,
and all by meanes of thee,
Which loth I am should chaunce,
least to thy great reproch,
Page  [unnumbered] It blazed be, that thou art she,
that set my bale abroche,
Take pitty on my payne,
peruse my dolefull vearse.
Let trickling teares and secret sighes,
into thy intrailes pearce.
Oh rue my rufull state,
my youthfull yeares respect,
And let the tormentes I sustaine,
enforce thee to reiect
All retchlesse rigour, take, imbrace,
loue; like, and neuer leaue,
The wight that will in spight of spight,
to thee for euer cleaue,
Who heare in lew of loue,
doth vow himselfe to thee,
Thy slaue, thy seruaunt, and thy friend,
till dying day to be.
Finis.

Certaine verses written in commendation of the Rose.

AS sundry sortes of men in world there be,
So sundry mindes in them also remayne,
And in one point they sieldome do agree,
That one thinkes good, another thinketh vayne,
That one desyres, another doth disdayne,
And I that doe in Flowers great pleasure take,,
Desyre the Rose, my nosegay sweete to make.
The vallyaunt man doth most delight in warre,
The coward craues to liue at home in peace,
Thastronomer to view eche twinkling starres,
The couetous carle his substaunce to increase,
Page  [unnumbered] The prisoner pore doth couet most release.
But I that doe in Flowers great pleasure take,
Desyre the Rose my nosegay sweete to make.
The husbaudman full barnes desyre to haue,
The Faulkener doth in Faulcon most delight,
The Hunter be good houndes doth chiefely craue,
The mighty man reioiceth in his might,
The amorous Daine to shew her hewry bright,
But I that doe in Flowers great pleasure take,
Desyre the Rose my Nosegay sweete to make.
The pretty collour I commend.
Though in the same no sweetenesse restes at all.
From Basill doth a sauour sweete assend,
yet doth the same the sences sore appall.
The appetite is marred much withall.
Therefore doe I, in Flowers that pleasure take,
Desyre the Rose my Nosegay sweete to make.
Distild it makes a water wondrous sweete,
Of vertue great, and good for many thinges,
The oyle thereof, full many thinke more meete,
Because much case in them it often bringes,
The Flower is worne of Ladyes Lordes and Kinges,
And I that doe in Flowers great pleasure take,
Desyre the Rose my Nosegay sweete to make.
From point to point, to praise this pleasaunt Flower
And yeeld it that it doth deserue by right,
For learnings lacke it lyes not in my power,
Therefore to them that better can indighte,
I leaue the same to put in perfect plight,
But still I will in Flowers that pleasure take,
Desyre the Rose my nosegay sweete to make,
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

The Louer after long absence hauing onewed his loue, by beholding the bewty of his beloued mistresse, sueth vnto her for grace, for the appea∣sing of his passyons.

VVHether it were by my good of euil aduenture, that of late I beheld ye, I know not, but surely at the same time; I did so contemplate the rare bewtye and other excellent Ornamentes of nature. Where with you are most plentifully inriched, as euer since I haue 〈◊〉 in my selfe, so cruell and continuall a Combate, as I feare me withoute your speciall grace and fauour, for furtheraunce of my ser∣uent desyre, I shall not be able long to continue; loue on the one syde assayleth me, Reason on the other syde inua∣deth me, Hope pricketh me forward, and feare pulleth mee back from attempting that whiche maye eyther reaue my lyfe, or restore my libertye, according to the good or euill successe that it hath.

But loue at the last vanquishing reason, and hope aban∣doning feare, the rather by meanes of the good intertem∣ment, friendly fauiiliarity and vndeserued curtesy, which I haue hither to found in you, I am the more imboldned by these few lynes, to make you priuy to y passions, which I continually suffer for your sake, thereby to case my mind of the greefes that grow by concealing it, and to purchase remedy for the greeuons mallady that putteth me to suche importable paine, which being only in you to graunte, I hope you will not be so cruell harted as to denaye it mee. For as my loue towardes you, farre excelleth all others, and as my faithfull seruice, and true intent deserueth bet∣ter recompence, then a rashe and rigorous refusall. So am I fully perswaded to fynd your pittifull hart ready to rue my calamities, and with the balme of your beneuolence, faluing the sore that so afflicieth mee, render mee a recom∣dence worthe my deseruing, wherein referring my selfe Page  [unnumbered] wholy to your clemency I leaue to trouble you any further for this time.

Of a Souldyer who for couirousnesse of a little money, lost his owne lyfe.

WHen Prenest had bine long besiegne,
by enemyes strength:
With hunger and thyrst they were full sore,
opprest at length,
That many a one for lack of foode,
was forst to dye.
Amongst which sort there then was one,
did lykewise lye,
As did the rest in extreame payne,
vntillhe caught,
A little Mouse, which one of him,
for money bought.
A hundred pence he more esteemde,
then lyfe to saue,
Although long time the vse thereof.
he might not haue.
So conitons was this mysers mynde,
of worldly muck,
That when he might haue saude his lyfe,
such was his luck,
For loue of money he lost the same,
but was not he,
Requited with a iust rewarde,
as he should be.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

The complaint of one Sidaspo, who was imflamed with loue through the bewty of his seruaunt Aletha.

OLthsome lyfe, oh 〈…〉ning fate,
Oh Fortune most vnkinde,
Oh death come pierce my painefull brest,
to ease my troubled minde.
Oh loue, nay lust, oh foude desyre,
oh cursed blinded boye,
What meanst thou thus to worke my w,
and breede my great annoy,
I burne alas continually,
in such ercessiue heate,
That nothing may therewith compare.
it semes to me so great,
More hote it is a thousand times,
then Lothsome Limbo lake,
Or Aetna hill, whose flashing flames,
no thing hath power to slake,
And yet some time more cold then yee.
I am pore wretch againe,
Then by and by aboundantly.
the raging herte doth raine,
Whereas I was a mayster late,
and had ech thing at will,
Now must I serue as seruill slaue,
to please my seruaunt still,
What remedy, it boteth not
for me at all to striue,
Against the mighty power of loue,
or any man aliue,
The Prince for all his Princely power,
cannot his force withstand.
Page  [unnumbered] The valyauntest wight that euer liude,
durst not hold vp his hand,
Against Cupido for to striue,
or combat for to make,
The wisest can not shun his wiles.
he causeth all to quake,
yea euen the Gods themselues I fynde,
doe rest at Cupids grace,
And be but Subiectes vnto him,
in euery kinde of case,
Then how should I amortall man,
deuise to shunne the same,
Now dare I once resi•• the wight
that euery thing can tame.
Aletha oh my darling deare,
thou thou a lone art she,
which so hast laid thy snares abroade,
for to intangle me.
Thou art the dame that I desyre,
to serue and honour still,
Thou art the iewell of my ioy,
thou maist me saue or spill.
But stay: what wordes be these I speake,
shall I become a slaue,
And bondman to my seruaunt so,
her fauour shall I craue,
That should by reason still remaine,
at my desyre and will,
To doe the thing that I commaund,
though it be good or ill.
No no I rather fyrst will choose,
vnto the naked knyfe
My throte to yield, that so I might,
bereaue my lothsome lyfe,
What if I should attempt the same,
what if I should requyre,
Page  [unnumbered] The same of her, I am not sure,
to purchase my desyre,
But why doe I misdoubt the same,
before I haue it tryde,
why he that loueth feruently,
feares not to be denyde,
why should I any daungers dread,
to winne so fayre a dame,
well hoping for to gaine some grace,
my letters will I frame.
In dolefull wyse vnto my dealee,
whose splendent bewty rare,
Hath so inflamde my hart with loue,
and cloyde my mynde with care,

A Letter which the said Sidaspo sente to his seruaunt Aletha.

THy bewty braue O Aletha,
thy brestes like driuen snow,
Thy Currall lippes, thy cristall eyes,
and heare which to the show,
Appeares lyke gold, thy fyngers small,
with skinne as yuorye cleare,
And eake thy worthy quallities,
which make thee to appeare,
More lyke a Goddesse for to be,
then any earthly wight,
would sure allure a stonye harte,
in thee to haue delight.
For as the Fowler in his net,
the silly byrdes doth take,
So hath the same intrapped me,
which makes my hart to quake,
The Adamant stone would neuer draw,
the yron to it more.
Page  [unnumbered] Then hath your bewty drawne my hart,
which makes me now deplore,
For loue of you I liue in care,
my sorrowes doe abound,
And death will shortly end my dayes,
if helpe there none be found.
By you I haue receaude this harme,
which none but you can cure;
In you it restes to ease the paine,
that I doe now indure,
Therefore I craue you, shew some grace,
to cure me of my greete,
Let pittie in your hart take place,
to bring me some releefe,
Oh who is able to resist,
the feruent force of loue,
Or who once wounded with the darte,
is able to remoue
The same from him, now surely none,
though Hectors hart he haue,
Or Hercules strength it will not serue,
from Cupid him to saue.
Therefore O louing Lady deare,
howe downe thy eyes of pittie,
Consider in thy skilfull braine,
that art both wise and wittye
What tormentes for thy sake I byde,
which by no meanes will cease.
way well how like a wretch I liue,
till thou doe me release.
By graunting me my hartes desyre,
to cure my deadly smart,
whereby no harme maȳ grow to thee,
but all to ioye conuart,
My lyfe my goods and all thinges else,
shall rest at thy desyre,
Page  [unnumbered] Euen as thy owne at euery time,
if thou the same requyre:
Let reason therefore O my deare,
perswade thee for to yeelde,
To my request by meanes thereof,
from sorrowes me to shield,
Thus for this time I make an ende,
and wish thee well to fare,
In wofull wise, desyring thee,
to thinke vpon my care.
Finis

The abiect Louer complaineth of the crueltye and disdainefull lookes of his Lady.

THe moste incessaunt painefull panges,
that I haue long sustainde:
By sundry meanes my feeble hande,
to write hath now constrainde,
Thereby to let thee vnderstand;
oh stony harted Dame,
The thing that this my dolefull hart,
(to thy eternall shame)
Cannot conceale, and seeing that
thou rather seekst to be,
My mortall foe, then faithfull friend,
I doe the like by thee,
If (as I am) thou were a man,
then weapons would I vse,
For to reuenge my wrong on thee,
that doest me so abuse,
But sith the tongue the weapon is,
wherewith fond women fight,
My tongue and pen shall now suffice,
to worke the lyke despight.
Page  [unnumbered] Who striues against the streame I see,
or sailes against the winde,
Or soweth seede in barren soyle,
but little gaine shall fynde,
So he that sets his loue,
where pryde hath taken place,
shall sooner catch his bitter bane,
then winne one sparke of grace,
As I vnto my paine,
haue proude to late alas
By seruing thee, oh scornefull dame,
that nought therefore doest passe.
For when by letters I,
my meaning doe declare,
Thy aunswere seemes as bitter gall,
for to increase my care,
When as I smyle, thou frownest,
and eake when I am sad,
Then greatly seemst thou to reioyce,
as one whose hart is glad,
If I doe thee salute
in friendly wise, I see
Thou turnest then thy head asyde,
and windste away from me,
The Tyger fierce in tyme,
is made both meeke and tame.
The stone through often drops of raine,
that fall vpon the same,
Doth weare, the mountaines bye,
and strongest holds of all,
In tyme may by some casualtye,
be forst to ground to fall,
Yea Nilus may in time,
(for all his scope of streames)
Be dryed vp, and cleane consumde,
through heate of Phebus beames,
Page  [unnumbered] There is no thing on earth I thinke,
but may in tyme conuart:
Except it be in womans brest,
a hawty stubborne harte.
Which neither reason, gentle wordes
nor pittie can procure,
For to reuoke hir wilfull minde.
that setled is so sure,
My wound was wondrous deepe,
the paines I did indure,
By meanes of thy great crueltie,
my sorrowes did procure,
For thou in whome it onely lay,
to remedy the same,
In steede of salue didst poyson yielde,
my ruine for to frame,
Oh cursed wretchlesse rase,
of wicked woman kinde,
How can your hartes so cruell be,
to them that you make blynde,
what hart of flinte hath he,
who hauing hurt a man,
That is his friend, to cure his payne,
will not doe what he can.
But thou a cruell Crocadile,
Ingendred in the floode,
Of foule Onilus wilt not graunt,
to doe thy pacient good.
Few women at this day doe lyue,
that guyde themselues so well,
But if one vertue good therebe,
which in their brest doth dwell,
Two worser vices for the same,
is found in them to be,
which doe the vertues cleane deface,
and force them for to flee,
Page  [unnumbered] They can condicions chaunge,
to cause their friendes vnrest,
As the Chameleon chaungeth hue,
When as it likes him best,
If that they be disposde,
pore louers to allure,
They can as wily wayes inuent,
their purpose to procure,
As the Hiena can,
by learning of the name,
And calling them whose present death,
they purpose for to frame,
Such pittifull complaintes,
the Sirens can not make,
As can these wicked women doe,
if once they vndertake,
No beast so brute as they,
if once they fall to vice,
No asse more foolish then they are,
yet doe they thinke them wise.
If one their bewty praise,
then doe they looke so hye,
As though they straight wais would presume
to scale the lofty skye.
Yet doe I not condemne herein,
all women to be ill,
But some yea euen the greatest part,
are subiect to their will,
As I haue had iust cause to say,
who proued haue the same,
Through thy vnkindnesse shewde come,
O most disdainefull Dame,
And therefore humbly doe I craue,
of heauenly Ioue aboue.
That thou for this thy crueltye,
like greefe to myne maist proue,
Page  [unnumbered] And thus I make an ende as now,
of this my bitter vearse,
As one compeld by womans pride,
their dealinges to rehcarse.
Finis.

A commendation of the Cock.

WHo can such worthy praises giue,
vnto the Cocke as he,
Deserues to haue, now surely none,
for fyrst of all we see,
How carefull of our healthes he is,
who least we should be harmde,
At midnight with his crowing oft,
doth warne vs to be armde,
And at the dawning of the day,
to lerify our minde.
He doth the lyke, and biddeth vs,
good morrow in his kinde,
Againe were not the Cock I pray,
what Poultrie should we haue,
What other byrde or pleasaunt foule,
that we so much doe craue,
Our dainty Dames should be content
to feede on courser fare,
If that it were not for the Cock,
that dainties doth prepare.

A commendacion of the Robin redde brest.

VVHen Hyems with his hory frostes,
and blustering Boreas blaste,
Had runne his race, and Lady Ver,
his pleasaunt course had past,
Page  [unnumbered] Then Aestas entred in by course,
and Phebus golden rates,
Whose scorching heate mild Zephirus,
asswagde at all assayes,
were spread abroade through euery coste,
which causde eche thing to ioye,
Then was it pleasure great to see,
the little Fishes play,
And friscoes fetch about the bankes,
to fynde some pleasaunt baite,
whiles they vnwares intangled are.
by Fishers foule deceite,
Then euery tree is fresh and greene,
then Flora on the ground,
Her mantell spreades, and fertill fieldes,
with pleasaunt Flowers abound,
The dainty Dames from euery place,
doe thither fast resorte,
And Garlandes make of cropped flowers,
of sundry sent and sorte,
In euery streete great stirring is,
some quasse and make good cheare,
Some leape, some daunce, some sing, some play
some chase the light foote Deare,
Here Orpheus with his pleasaunt Harpe,
there Amphion with his Lute,
Doe make moste pleasaunt melodie,
and carping cares confute,
The amorous youthes doe stray the streetes,
and with their Ladies walke.
And some againe doe passe the day,
with passing pleasaunt talke,
So euery man to please his minde.
some pastime doth frequent,
To driue away all drowsy dumpes.
and sluggish sloth preuent.
Page  [unnumbered] It chaunced so this time,
that as in bed I lay,
Oppressed sore with painefull pangs,
about the breake of day
I started vp, and forth I walkte,
into the fieldes so fayre,
My selfe to solace there at will,
and take the pleasaunt ayre,
The ground that garnisht was with flowers,
did yield so sweete a smell,
That noysome sauoures none were felt,
It did them all repell,
Then past I forth with stealing steps,
and lookte about me round,
To take a view of euery thing,
wherein I pleasure found,
And by and by from farre me thought,
I seemde a sounde to heare,
which still the further that I past,
more pleasaunt did appeare,
It was so sweete a melody,
that sure I thought some muse,
Or else some other heauenly wight,
did there frequent and vse.
But as I cast mine eye asyde,
on braunche of willow tree,
A little Robin redbrest then,
there sitting did I see,
And he it was, and none but he,
that did so sweetely sing,
But sure in all my life before,
I neuer harde the thing,
That did so much delight my hart,
or causde me so to ioye,
As did that little Robins song,
that there I hard that day,
Page  [unnumbered] That did so much delight my harte.
or causde me so to ioye,
As did that little Robins song,
that there I heard that day,
The Poets faine that Orpheus made,
both stones and trees to daunce,
When he vppon his Harpe did play.
They also doe aduaunce
So muche Arion for his skill,
that when into the seas
He should be cast they said that he,
a Dolphin so did please,
That safe she brought him vnto shore,
when death he did aspect,
And from all perrils perrillous,
did him right well protect,
Mercurius made the hundred eyes,
of Argos all to sleepe,
With elsying on an Oren pipe,
his knowledge was so deape,
Yet sure I thinke their harmony,
might not coquall be,
With that this little Robin made,
it so delighted me.
Nay sure I thinke the Muses nyue,
may not with him compare,
Nor yet Apollo for his skill,
whose musick was so rare.
Full often 〈◊〉 my hart doth wishe,
this prety byrd to haue.
For more then any worldly thing,
the same I still doe craue.
And if my luck might be so good,
this Robin once to gaine.
Then greatly would my ioyes abound,
and hart should feele no paine,
Page  [unnumbered] For neuer did I see the thing,
that I so well could leeke,
Therefore aboue all other thinges,
to haue the same I seeke,
For collour and for omlinesse,
all byrdes he doth surmount,
His flesh as very delicate,
full many men accoumpt,
God graunt therefore that I may gaine,
this Robin at my will,
Then doe I hope to vse him so,
that he shall tarry still.
For rather would I lose my lyfe,
and all thinges else besyde,
Then from my Robin I woulde parte,
at any time or tide.
Finis.

The long acquainted Louer writeth to his beloued, whose grace he desyred.

LIke as no fyre doth yeeld so great a heate,
As that which longest lyes in kindling this is sure,
So can no loue so vehement be and great,
As that which doth the longest time indure,
For why the fyre that by and by doth flame,
Is straight consumde, that none may see the same.
Euen so the loue that on a sodaine growes,
Doth straight wayes waste, and vanish as a shade,
As very well this auncient Prouerbe showes.
Whote loue soone colde, and soone away doth fade,
But as a tonne doth still the taste retaine,
Of that which fyrst did in the same remaine.
So I my deare whose loue in tender age,
Hath taken roote cannot the same suppresse,
Page  [unnumbered] Or else the greefe thereof by skill asswage,
For It I can by no meanes fynd redresse,
But as your thrall I rest in wfull case,
Expecting still with great desyre some grace.
Oh Lady deare doe not therefore disdaine,
The humble sute of him that loues you best,
but arme your selfe to shew the lyke againe,
For otherwise you breede his great vnrest,
Forget not my good will thinke on your friend,
And thus with teares my humble sute I ende.
Finis.

Of one Vrbina a Virgin vestall, taken in adulterye,

VRbina a Uirgin vestall in adultry being taken,
with roddes about the cittie was whipped therefore,
And of all her friendes then being forsaken,
was buried aliue, whome none did deplore,
And of the Adulterers that did her deflower,
The one did stay himselfe that present hower,
The other the ouersecers of the temple then,
Caused to be executed in the market place,
That he might be a warning to all other men,
To teach them the path of vertue to trace.
Finis.

Of one Cianippus, who in his dronkennesse deflowred his owue daughter ciane.

OF Siracuse cianip
Behause that he did offer,
His Sacrifise to all the Gods,
and none to Bachus proffer,
was stroke with such a drunckennesse,
that meeting in the darke,
His Daughter Ciane, her deflourde,
but what did follow marke,
Page  [unnumbered] She to the end to vnderstand,
and know who did the deede,
From of his finger p〈…〉 his ring,
whereby she saw with spéede,
That it had bene her Father deare,
and after when the Citty,
was plagued all for this foule facte,
and that by sentence wittie,
Of th' oracle it wined was,
the Authour of the act,
For to be sacrifised vp,
for this foule fylthy fact,
whereas none knew who it should be,
or what did cause the same,
Ciane with afflitted minde,
remembring it die frame,
Her Fathers death, who being dead
herselfe she also 〈◊〉,
And on his corpes her corpes she 〈◊〉,
for euery man to view.
Finis.

Of one Ceselius Bassus a Carthagenian, who deceiued the Emperour Nero.

CEselius Bassus on a time,
vnto king Nero tolde,
That in a Lane within his ground,
was hid great heapes of Golde,
which he (he sayd) supposde. to be,
of Didos hiding there,
Unto which wordes he credite gaue,
and from that place to beare,
The same, he did full many send,
the Orators in meane space,
Page  [unnumbered]〈…〉ded Nero saying that,
he stoode in fortunes grace,
And that he was of all the Gods,
beloude and fauourde most,
within whose time such welth was found,
That had so long bene lost,
And hidden in the bo〈…〉le of
the earth full many a day,
Wherefore in hope of new found Wealth,
this Emperour made away,
The store he had but in the end
when they were at the place,
whereas thi〈…〉 should 〈◊〉,
〈…〉lius ma•• them trace,
From this to that place vp and downe,
to seeke the foresaid aue,
And myners many one did seeke,
by 〈◊〉 the same to haue,
If any there should hidden lye,
but laboured all in waine,
He said sorte sprite had him dertaude,,
and did a furie fayrte,
But to auoyde the present teare,
and sh〈…〉 that should arise,
He slow himselfe and N〈…〉ft,
still gaping for his prise.
Finis.

The Louer woried with long loue; taking assuraunce of succour, enduceth his Lady to receiue 〈◊〉 to her seruice.

FOr asmuch as euery thing by nature enforceth it selfe with all dilligent industry (so much as it may) to resiste Page  [unnumbered] the great enormities wherewith it is afflicted, I am now constrained (after long sufferaunce) to let you vnderstand the ardent desyre which by little and little cons〈…〉 me; as may plainely appeare by many manifest tokens, which shewe suffieiente testimonye of my true intence. And thinke not that I haue bene moued her〈…〉 at all aduen∣tures, or without some hope and assuraunce that I haue, in time to obtaine that which by the liberall helpe of your ac∣customed clemency may bring mee suche comforte as shall well content me, assuring my selfe, that from a thing of such excellency as is your seemely selfe (in whome besides your euine bowty there are assembled so many good gra∣ces and heroicall ve〈…〉) man may not expecte any o∣ther but a sincere and good inclination to immitate almost in all thinges the customes of amorous humanitys, ma∣king him to appeare pittifull in deede and word, and redye to impart his liberall fauour to all those that craue it, and by their good behauiour doe duly deserue it. This also yel∣deth some satisfactiō to my troubled mind, that my words which were of late restrained, haue now found free issue, whereby I requyre helpe at your handes, whilste I yet feele in my selfe sufficiente habillitye to receiue it, assu∣ring you that it will be to late for so sitall a benefit, if you delay the time to let me inioy the formine of your friendly ••uour, wherof being very desyrous, I attend your curte∣ous aunswere, with assured hope that your good pleasure will be to accept me for your humble seruant, that so long as any sparke of lyfe remaineth in mee, haue vowed my selfe to your seruice, and cannot but accounte you for my onely mistresse. Assure your selfe the refore that my lyfe may not long indure, if my 〈…〉 destinye doe denye me the fauour to fynde you agreeable to my affectionate desyre.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

The Louer hauing long time loued a fayre Gentlewo∣man, at whose handes he had reciued small hope of obtaining his purpose, wrighteth vn∣to her as followeth.

TO vse any long discourse my dearely beloued Parme∣nia, in the declaration of my great good will and ser∣uent affection towardes you, I coumpte it but friuotous, seing I am well assured that you haue long since percey∣ued, and from time to time made perfect ryall of my true uer towards you yet to the hope so vncertain that I haue hitherto receiued frō you, as I cannot assure my self of any further fauour at your handes, then he that hath neuer de∣serued any at all, and as it is the property of all those that loue faithfully so feare the worst, so doe I many times misdoubt least through my owne euill destenye, or the fai∣ned flattery of some false dissembler, I shal bee depriued of that comfort which doth more content me then the Con∣quest of a whole kingdome: wherefore being greatly gre∣ued with the vncertaintie of my present estate, by meanes 〈◊〉 y mutability, that many times I find to be in you, not able any longer to sustain the torments that it putteth me vnto, I haue thought good to write these few words vn∣to you most humbly beseeching you to dissolue me of this doubt without delay that if I finde not your aunswere a∣greeable with my desyre I may seeke if I can to suppresse the seruente affection that is nowe so deepelye rooted in my harft, as I feare mee I shall hardlye remooue it.

Doe this my good Parmenia, and feare not anye inconuenience that may growe thereby.

For, I hope that by graunting mee youre friendlye fauoure, you shall haue no cause to repente you of any thing that shall happen vnto you vnlesse it be because you Page  [unnumbered] haue so long lacked the company of so comfortable a com∣panyon, by whose meanes with the helpe of God you shal not only be deliurred of your long and grreuous sicknesse, which cannot be otherwise cured, but also leauing the life that now you eade be cid of all these your mallicious E∣nemies, that with their enuye on deuill dealing doe daylye vndeseruedly deuise to doe you displeasure, and withall purchase to your selfe so faithfull a friend as for anye ad∣uenture will neuer forsake you but vsing his dilligente & carefull industry to prouide for your maintenance, which neede I hope shall neuer happen vnto you, howesoeuer you esteeme my present state to be, for I know there is no¦thing so difficult, but the wit of man if wil be with it may well bring it to passe, comforting my selfe with this assu∣red hope, that God will neuer suffer them to perrishe that put their trust in him.

Thus muche my good harmena, I haue thoughte good to wryte vnto you because I coulde not finde conuenic〈…〉 tyme or mete opportunity to deliuer it vnto you in 〈◊〉 I pray you consyder of it aduisedly, that I may know your resolute aunswere therein, And so fare you well.

The Louer being promised a resolute aunswere to that he desyred, wrighteth to his beloued Mistresse, in this manner, wherein he perswadeth her, to pittie his passions.

THe pore miserable wretch that hath long continued in Captiuity, and knoweth not what shall become of him cannot be more troubled in mynde, or tossed with more in∣tollerable tormentes to increase his callamity then I am at this present, for feare to finde your aunswere contrarye to my expectation. And surelye were it not that I knowe your clemency to be such as cannot with crueltye counter∣uayle the courtesy of so faithful a frind as I to my smal po∣wer haue alwayes shewed my selfe to be towardes you, I

Page  [unnumbered] should long since rather haue bereaued my lyfe to prooue my loyaltie, then by attending the dreadful sentence of my condemnation, be adiudged to dye without deserte, by her whose welfare I haue preferred, before all worldly Trea∣sure.

The law of nature bindeth you to bend most to him that loueth you best, and bydeth moste sorrowe for your sake. Iustice also inioyneth you to render to euery one his right which if you performe accordingly, as you must needes do if you desyre to be demed worthye of the estimation which belongeth to such a one as you are, I doubt not but I shal receiue from you that comfort which I haue long tyme co∣uited, I meane your friendlye fauour and franke consente in loue, to knit with me the knot of perpetuall amitye, as with him that for his loyall loue, hath aboue all other best deserued it, and desyreth rather to dy, then liue and lack it.

The tragedy of Meliager, sonne to Oeneus King of Calcedonia.

PArthaons sonne, Oeneus King
of calcedonia lande,
To all the Gods did institute,
and offer with his hande,
His sacrifise saue onelye to
Diana dyre, whome he
For hatred or forgetfulnes
remitted, wherewith shee
Full greatly gretude, a huge great Bore,
did send to waste the lande,
That made much spoyle in many a place,
and no man might withstand,
Untill Oeneus at the last,
in mind opprest with greefe,
A generall hunt ordeyned had,
whereof his sonne was cheefe.
Page  [unnumbered] That Meliager hight, with whome,
besides his vnckles twayne,
That oxeus and Plexippus hight,
there went as bookes shew plaine,
A Uirgin fayre the Daughter,
of Iasius great of Fame,
Through alf Arcadia where he raign de,
Atlanta was her name,
who with a stroke she gaue that Bore,
Did make him fyrst co bleede,
And therefore when the Bore was slaine,
to recompence that deede,
To her the head and humbles both
did Meliager giue.
which soone from her his vnckles tooke.
so much it did them greeue,
Wherewith Meliager sore displeasde,
did therefore slay them both,
Which when his mother Althea knew,
she waxing wondrous wroth,
Into the fyre the brand did cast,
whereon his lyfe depended,
Which being wasted cleane away,
then straight his life it ended,
For whose dicease his Sisters all,
full lamentably mourned,
Till they at last amidst their wo,
to Turky Hennes were turned.

Lenuoy.

THese foresayde thinges who noteth well,
to fyre them fast in mynde,
He shall not fayle for his auayle,
good fruicte therein to fynde.
Fyrst by Oeneus are we taught,
at no time to neglect,
Page  [unnumbered] The duty which we owe to God.
but chiefely haue respect,
To honour him, and laude his name,
that leddeth lyfe to all,
which errth contines, who lifts vs vp,
and likewise lets vs fall,
whome Seas obay, whome heauens a dore
and all thinges else besyde,
who sees and knowes our secret thoughtes,
though we the same would hyde,
And as he is a God moste iust,
so iustly will he render,
His grace vnto the penitent,
although a great offender,
Deseruing death most damnable,
so mercifull is he.
That as he saith, he doth not seeke,
a sinners death to see,
For when from depth of hart we will,
our hainous crimes confesse,
And craue forgiuenesse at his handes,
we soone shall finde redresse,
But when no mendment he perceiues,
nor warninges to preuayle,
Then with his mighty hand he doth,
vs wicked wight as assayle,
And vs and all our progeny,
vnto the death pursues,
Then praise we God, and vnto him,
all reuerence let vs vse,
And you O Captaines that doe guyde,
and gouerne Armies great,
Ye Magistrates and Rulers all,
that are with pryde repleate,
Leaue of lyke lawlesse Lordes to liue,
Of Meliager learne,
Page  [unnumbered] To yield to ech his due desert,
as reason shall disearne,
Who merrits golden gaine to get,
for worthy workes committed,
In countreyes cause let his reward,
in no wise be remitted,
So shall you surely reape renoune,
and purchase peoples loue,
Yea valyaunt minds to vallyaunt actes,
thereby you soone shall moue,
you enuious sorte at prosperous state,
of men that doe repine,
That grutch to see another gaine,
with most mallicious eyne,
Forsake that foule infyrmitye,
that hurt with vertue heale,
Which vexeth euery vaine of you,
for grace to God appeale.
Else shall confusyon come to you,
and that which you did craue,
To light on others that be sure,
your selues alone shall haue,
By Meliager murtherers may
a good example see,
To cause them shun to seeke their blood,
with whome they greeued be,
Least that the same to heauenly Ioue,
from earth do vengeaunce erye.
and so their soules be damde in hell,
when corpes in graue doe lye,
For God so much a murderer hates,
that be he Priuce or peare,
yet blood craues blood, and vnto God
the Begger is as deare
In all respectes, as is the King,
that rules in regall raigne,
Page  [unnumbered] Who murdereth shall be murdered,
who slayeth shall be slaine,
What measure men to others meate,
with that they shall againe,
Be measured this finde we true,
by tryall euery day,
Now last of all let ssters learne,
where vertue beares cheefe sway,
To loue their bretheren feruently,
as nature doth requyre,
So shall they purchase praise of all,
that know their good desyre.
Finis.

A letter written by one to a ritche Widdow, wherein vsing earnest perswations he soli∣citeth his sute, and craueth to be accepted.

LIke as the Captaine maye well bee counted a Coward, and vnworthy of victorye, that for a small discomfiture at the fyrst encounter will be cleane discouraged, so may he bee deemed but a dissembling Louer, that for one denyall will bee drawne cleane awaye, neither doth he deserue to reape so greate a commoditye, as the consent of her that he loueth maye bring vnto him.

But my loue being grounded vpon good occasyons, and setled on so sure a foundation, as it cannot be easily ouer∣whelmed, so long as any sparke of lyfe abydeth in my bo∣dy, it were great crueltye to contemne me, or careleslye to cast me of, without rendring me a recompeuce worthy my deseruing, which I am fully perswaded that your curteous condicion cannot consent vnto, and therefore am the more imboldened once againe to trouble you with my Letters. And although you wordes haue hitherto giuen mee small Page  [unnumbered] hope of any further fauour then I haue already found, yet am I so blinded with affection, as I cannot but still perse∣uer in the same.

It pleased you at our laste conference amongest other thinges, to enquyre of my estate, which being in deede ve∣ry simple, in comparison of that which it hath pleased God to call you vnto. If I shoulde haue made it better then it was, when you should afterwardes haue proued the con∣trarye, you mighte well haue deemed mee a Dissembler, and worthye of greate blame, for dealing so dublely with you, and therefore I soughte rather to abase then better my selfe, as I trust youre seemelye selfe haue well per∣ceiued.

Yet would I not haue you thinke me so simple, but that I shall be able alwayes to get an honest liuing to maine∣tayne me withall, although I had none other helpes then that which God hath giuen me by nature, much more then being matched with such a one as you are, whose wealth is better knowne to others, then wished of mee for myne owne priuate profite.

For as I knowe my selfe altogither vnworthy of so great a benefite, so must I needes acknowledge the Fa∣uoure that I haue already found at your handes, farre to exceede my desartes.

And yet, if you were priuie to my purposes and knew my true intent, and the great god will and vnfayned affection that youre clemencye constrayneth mee to beare vnto you, I doubte not but I shoulde fynde that friend∣lye fauour at your hands, that otherwise were vnmete for one of my degree.

But peraduenture, because I am a yong manne, and haue but little to take vnto, you thinke I woulde if I were once possessed of you, seeke onely to liue vppon that which you haue, and not being carefull for your com∣moditye, nor respecting your person as I oughte to doe, Page  [unnumbered] would carelessely consume your substaunce, and when no∣thing remaineth to maintaine my ryots, woulde leaue you to to shifte for your selfe, (as many vyld varlets doe at this day the more is the pitty) But they be such as haue in them neither honestye nor wisedome, or will doe well.

And if you so conceiue of me (as I hope you do not,) how farre this imagination differeth from my good meaning, God and mine owne conscieuce onely knoweth, I beseech you therefore suffer no such thoughtes to sinke into youre minde, for if my derdes bee founde anye thing differente from my wordes, I wish that the earth may gape and swal low me vp, or Fyre from heauen consume me,

Diuerse are the reasons that induce me thus earnestlye to solicite my sute vnto you.

First your personage, which pleafeth me more then any that euer I sawe.

Secondly, your curteous condttions, vertues, and wis∣dome, being such, as would well content any honoste and well minded man, though the rest were wanting.

Teyrdelye, your yeares which being at the full per∣fection, neither to yong a wanton, or to olde a Dotarde, but one that are both hable for your experieuce, to minister good councell to suche an vnskilfull yong man as I am, and also sufficiently satisfye me in all other thinges requi∣site for my yong yeares.

Fowerrhlye, youre wealth to supplye my wante, whiche beeing so well ordred as I assure you it should be, if I inioyed it, it might not onelye be conserued, but also increased to the great commoditie and comforte of vs both.

These be the causes that incourage mee so effectu∣ally to prosecute my purpose, wherein if I finde you fauourable as I hope I shall, I will not onelye bee readdye to perfourme my promyses in all respectes, Page  [unnumbered] but also would be moste humbly at your commaundment, as your moste bounden and obedient seruaunt,

Finis.

The fyrst Letter written to the same widdowe, extolling her vertues, which he allegeth to be the cause of his ardent affection, he requyreth ma∣riage of her.

THe commendable quallities togither wyth the incomparable curtesy that I haue hearde and partly seene to be in you hath in incoura∣ged me thus boldly to presume to present you with my disordered Letters, therebye to lette you vnderstand the harty good will and vntained affecti∣on which I haue long tyme borne vnto you though teare to offend you haue caused me hitherto to conceale it, hoping that although my degree be farre inferiour to yours, in e∣uery respect, yet will you not scorne my curtesy, or requite my good will with crueltye.

My request is reasonable, and my desyres not dishonest and therefore deserue the rather to be fauoured, marriage is the marke I shoote at, which is a holy thing, and ordey∣ned by God, from the beginning.

And although I craue to be matched with you, yet if I might finde the fauour at your handes to be so accepted, considering our inequallity, and not desyring the Priue∣ledge which perteineth to those that inioye their equals, to were, obediēce in the wife toward her husband, I wold refer my self wholy vnto your discretion, and yeild you the preheminence in al things as reason willeth, & being but as it were your steward, woulde discharge you of those weighty and troublesome affayres, that are incidēt to your calling.

As for my quallities and condicions what they are, I will leaue tothe report of others. But in deede my welth Page  [unnumbered] is verye small, yet is that w〈…〉 so supplyed with good will, as I hope you shoulde haue no cause to re∣pent you of the choyse of so base a persouage, but rather re∣ioyce that it was your lotte, to light on so louing a friend, For I am sure that the man liueth not on earth at this ho∣wer, that would more esteeme, loue and cherrish you then I would do, & if it would please you once to make triall of me, I hope you should finde me in all things according to your hartes desyre, which considered, I doubt not but I shall finde you ready to releeue me, by recompensing my good will with the lyke, with which hope I will comforte my selfe, till I heare the contrary, and so crauing pardone for my boldenesse, I commit you to God.

A yong Gentlewoman wrighteth this for aunswere to a Gentlemans Letter, that craued her loue, and exhor∣teth her to keepe promise with him, wherein ex∣cusing her selfe, by her ouer yong yeres, and his vnhabillitye, she prayeth him to cease of his sute.

YOur Leeters syr I haue receiued,
and pondring well the same,
Haue now preparde my selfe thereto,
an aunswere fit to frome,
Though in your writ you rome and raunge,
aboute the bushe a while,
And vse huge heapes of needelesse wordes,
my sences to begyle.
I see you seeke, but all in vaine,
to winne me to your wife,
Which I may not vouchsafe to graunt,
for feare of further stryfe.
Because it is not in my power,
to doe it, though my will,
Page  [unnumbered] were wholy bent thereto: but in
their handes whose prudeut skill,
And wisedome great is such,
as knowing what for me,
Moste meetest is; to your demaund
will neuer once agree,
And as their care is very great
to doe me good, so I
(As duety binds) in all thinges will,
my selfe to them apply.
your welth likewise is very small,
as you your selfe confesse,
And mine not great, and am right sure,
it would be so much lesse,
If following fancyes flattering words,
or fained vowes, I should
Contrary doe to friendes desyre,
and that which worst I would,
Their loue and fauour lose thereby,
therefore cease of your sute,
Content yur selfe with reasons rule,
and doe no blame impute
To me at all, whose tender age,
ne wit ne welth will serue,
To take in hand so great a charge,
but I therein should swerue.
And for that cause I doe not mynde,
to match with any one.
Untill I be of ryper yeares,
nor promise plight to none,
yet when I doe, I will apply
my selfe in all I may,
To choose a wise and prudent mate,
That walkes in vertues way:
Prouiding therewithall,
that welth doe neuer want,
Page  [unnumbered] sufficient alwayes to maintaine,
the fruicte o such a plant:
For whereas liuing lacking is,
to maintaine such estate,
Their perfect loue will soone peruert,
to cruell cancred hate,
And whereas rooted rancour raignes,
all thinges to ruine runne,
yea vertue chaungde to vice most yilde,
decay they cannot shunne
That shall be matched so, wherefore,
doth wisdome alwayes will,
In time conueniente heede to take,
if we will shunne such ill,
But though I know right well, the vse
of many men to be,
With flattering wordes, and fyled phrase,
as did Aeneas he,
To Dido, and falfe Demophon
to Phillis faire his friend,
For to deceiue vs silly soules,
that neuer hurt pretend,
But credite all their cloked craft,
that beares a simple shoe,
Till we be caught in Cupids snare,
so fast, that forth to goe
We haue not power, and then vnkind
they leaue vs in the lash,
A iust reward no doubt for such,
as will be ouer rash
In that they take in hand, yet I,
not iudging so of you,
But thinking that your loue profest.
both perfect is and true,
Doe yeelde you thankes therefore,
and humbly pardon craue,
Page  [unnumbered] For that I may not giue consent,
to that you seeke to haue,
The cause and reasons tolde before,
that doe in deede deteine me,
Perswading still the contrary,
at all times doe restraine me,
As for the promise which so much,
you vrge me for to keepe,
Assuring me by breache thereof,
to runne in daunger deepe,
No promise haue I made, whereon
you may so much take holde,
I am right sure, but that I may,
to breake the same he holde,
But if I had, yet euery one
would iudge you farre vnwise,
To challenge any al my handes,
in whome it nothing lyes
For to performe the same, sith of
my selfe nothing I haue,
Nor wit to know what thing is ill,
or what is good to craue,
And therefore ayming very wyde,
and as one wanting sight,
Doth throw his staffe, so doe you shoot,
but shall not hid the whight,
And therefore now to make an ende,
I humbly you requyre,
No more to mooue me in such sort,
but brydeling your desyre,
And pondring rightly this reply,
which here to you I make,
To feede no more on foolish hope,
But this for aunswere take.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A. B. wrighting to his sister C. B. admonisheth her of such thinges as he fyndeth amuse in her, and instruc∣teth her how shee should behaue herself to preserue her good name.

WElbeloued Sister, for as much as both nature and conscience bindeth me to be carefull for your commodity I haue thought good (as a friend) to admonishe you of such thinges as I finde amisse in you, which I praye you take in good part, and iudge none euill in me for the same, for I protest vnto you before God, that it is not of any enuye or mallice that I beare vnto you, but of meere good will, and to discharge my duty both towardes God, and you,

I see and heare and am sorry to vnderstande, what re∣portes are dayly raysed against you, for that you keepe companye, and make your selfe acquainted with so manye lewde disposed persons as you doe.

In deede it is a great presumption of an euill lyfe to bee conuersaunt with those that be euill, for commonlye lyke will to lyke.

Peraduenture you thinke it a goodly grace, and great∣ly to your commendation, with friendly lookes, and curte∣ous intertainements to draw men vnto you, but it is not so, and surely if you did consider the issue that it hath, and the inconuenience that groweth thereby, you woulde ra∣ther shut your selfe vp in some secrete chamber, and lyue a sollitary lyfe for euer, then set to the shew so often as you doe, for trust to this, and surely you shall fynd it most true, that as the Fowler with his fayned notes, bringeth the the byrdes to his Net, so those subtle serpentes, whose mindes are alwayes bent to mischiefe, will with their flat∣ring speeches, and false fained fetches, allure you to theire lubidious lustes, if they can.

Page  [unnumbered] But lend no eare vnto them, nor giue no credit vnto their words, for he that amongst them maketh the gretest show of good will, wil bee the man that shal soonestdeceiue you.

It is not any honest loue that they intend, but their de∣syre is to despoyle you of that which is the Iewell, where∣in you oughte cheefelye to ioye, whereof if they fayle, they will then rayse the moste vilde and slaunderous re∣portes against you that can be deuysed, and will not sticke to reporte their pleasure of you, in euery place where they come, to your great reproch and infamy, & though it be ne∣uer so faice that they faine, yet the report thereof, entring into the eares of the common sort, (that are redier to be∣leeue leasings, then creditt the verity,) they wil sone ima∣gine it to be true, and blaze it abrode for a certainciye, in∣to the eares of all men, and so where by good gouern∣ment you might haue gotten great cōmendation, through this your disordred liberty, you grow in great defamacion. Leaue then to lend care to the lewde perswations of those corrupt Caterpillers, be not in any wise cenuersaunt with them, but flye from them, as from a most pestilent euill, so shall you preserue your good name vnspotted, and giue no occasyon to be ill thought of, which in my poore opinyon, will be more beneficiall to your selfe, and lesse hurtefull to others, then by following your former course it would be, and so fare you well.

The lamentable complaint of a louer, who not withstan∣ding his diuerse daungerous trauailes, and continual sorrow sustained coulde fynd no fauor at al at her hands that was the causer of his callamity, but cruell contemt, to counteruayle his curtesy.

OF many torments, straunge and tedious toyles,
That grisly ghostes in Limbo lake sustaine,
Of feareful facts, and bloody beastly broiles,
That there are vsde, the pleasaunt Poets fayne,
As how that Phlegias to his treble paine,
Upon a turning wheele is fixed fast,
Page  [unnumbered] which makes him lothe his lyfe, that long doth last.
How Sisiphus doth rowle the restlesse stone,
which to the top attaind, turnes back againe,
How silly Titius making mostful mone.
Unto a Rock fast tyde, doth stil sustaine,
The griping greefes that rauerring byrds constraine,
who on his entrailes dayly feede their fill,
And yet he liues, to trye these tormentes still.
How Tantalus amidst the streame that standes,
Up to the chin, is like for drouth to dye,
And goodly Apples, almost in his hand,
with hunger nipt, in extreame payne doth lye,
How Danaus daughters doe themselues apply,
with pailes that bottomes want, a tubbe to fill,
That wanteth bottome to, which passeth still.
But all their paiues may not compared be,
To that which I doe euery hower abyde.
For all at once assembled are in me,
There is no torment that I haue not tryde,
To me the heauens haue happy ha〈…〉 denyde,
The Plannets all appointed me by fate.
to liue and leade my life in lothsome state,
All day my minde with fancies fond is fraught,
which greatly wastes my witte and breakes my braine
To no effect at all, when sleepe hath caughte
Some holde of me at night, alas my paine
Growes greater farre, for dreadfull dreauies restraine
My quiet rest, all myrth is mone to me,
All pleasure paine, I loth the light to see.
Of all the wightes that euer liude in loue,
was neueralone whose 〈◊〉 was lyke〈…〉 my〈…〉,
Page  [unnumbered] though grefe thein gript, though pain they long 〈◊〉 proue
yet did they gaine their wished will in fyne,
Their Ladies liking did it loue iclyne,
And they inioyde their ioy and hartes delight,
At wished will their wretched woe to quight.
Though pastor Paris past the surging Seas,
And many perrils more for Holl〈…〉 sake,
yet he at last his heauy hart to ease,
Enioyde her loue, and reft her from her make,
which deede the Greelies so gréeuousely did take,
As Troy therefore they did to ruine bring,
The fittest fruicte that of such loue doth spring.
when Peseus had with tedsous foyle distrest,
The Monstet huge that laboured to deuoke,
Andromada, that 〈◊〉 Rock did rest
Fast bound with chaines, expecting euery hower,
For dread ull death, he cropt the costly flower,
which fancy forst him seeke, with such annoy,
And after led his life in lasting ioy.
And many more such lyke a••enge Ieoulde,
who after paine did 〈…〉hase their desyre,
I might bring in Nastagio if I would,
Hippomanes that fryde in Cupids fyre,
And Pelops to if cause did so requyre,
But these will serue my faying true to trye,
That none for loue hath led such lyfe as I.
For Ialas of all men most a〈…〉,
Haue spent much time with care and busy cure,
And when I thought me best, my ha was worst,
when safe I seemde, then sate I most vnsure,
Not deadly dole that I did long 〈◊〉,
Not trickling teares〈…〉 could serue,
Page  [unnumbered] To purchase that which I doe well deserue.
When as I glaunce my glaring eyes on her,
She bendes ger lookes vpon some other thing,
When as I would with wordes my sute preferre,
Then angry she away from me doth fling,
Saying take heede; the Siren now doth sing,
And when with pen my passyons I depaint,
She rentes my writ and scornes my pittious plaine.
If messengers I send with her to treate,
And pleade my caufe as they can best deuise.
Their wordes so set her haughty hart in heate,
who causelesse still doth meso much despise,
As when she heares me narnde, her blood doth rise,
An when my friendes doe her present with aught,
She frets and fnmes as one with fury fraught.
Through places scarcely knowne, both day and night,
through wods, through groues, & marish grounds I rode
Through Forrests, fennes and furrowes voyde of lighte,
yea ouer hautye hilles where I abode,
Full many bitter blastes before I trode
The trustlesse where I this Tiger found,
whose diuelish deedes doth cause my cares abound.
Then cursed be the hower and eake the days,
wherein I did to her my iorney frame,
I would I had bene murdered by the way,
Before I came to see that cruell Dame,
who for good will doth yield me bitter blame,
For then the death had me depriude of all,
The daungers dyre, wherein I dayly fall.
But all to late to shut the stable dore,
When, so saith the prouer be olde,
Page  [unnumbered] I wisely should haue thought of this before
I did attempt her bewty to beholde,
Who hath my heauy hart so hard in holde,
As needes I must both loue and serue her still,
Though she me lothe, and seeke my blood to spill.
you yonglinges all, where euer that you be,
That sibiect are vnto the lawes of loue,
Take hede in time, be wysely warnd by me,
On whome you looke, least lookes that liking moue,
Ingendring loue, make you more paines to proue,
Then I pore wretch, that dayly wish to dye,
And yet doe liue, these tormentes straunge to trye.
Finis.

A yong man being in loue wiih a fayre Gentlewoman, that was but his equall, desyreth to be accep∣ted for her husband.

THe passyons extreme which for your sake I haue long sustained, being now through continuaunce of tyme, so wonderfully augmented and increased, that being no lon∣ger able to collerate the extreme paine thereof, I am coac∣ted and perforce constrained in most humble wise to craue grace at your handes, which is the onely meane whereby I may be cured of this moste greeuous and in fupportable mallady: Refuse not therefore I pray you this my petiti∣on, which is both honest and reasonable let not my good will be required with disdaine, nor my curtesie with cruel∣tie, for that were a point voyde of all humanitye, and far different from all maydenlike modestie: Dido Queene of Carthage loued Aeneas a straunger and a banished man, Euphinia Daughter to the King, and heyre to the crowne of the Kingdome of Corinth, matched herselfe with Acha∣risto her fathers dondman. The Dutchesse of Malsey chose Page  [unnumbered] for her husbande, her seruaunt Virico. And Venus also, (if we may giue credite to the fixions of Poets, who for hee surpassing hewry was cauonized a Goddesse,) refused noe to be the wife of lame Vulcanus.

Much lesse neede you then, that are mortal, and but of a meane progenye in comparison of the worste of all those princely Dames before repeated, to thinke scorue of mee that am no Straunger, but your owne natiue contrey∣man, no wandring exile, but a true and faithfull Subiect, continuing in the countrey where I was first borne and fostered, neither seruaunt to you, nor slaue to any other, but vtterly free from the yoke of seruitude and bondage, vntil such time as by contemplating the bright beames of your surpassing hewry, my poore hart was so captinated, that I was constrained to commit my selfe wholy vnto your cle∣mency, nor yet so monstrous and mishapen a creature, whereby you might haue iuste occasion so mislike of mee, but God I giue him thankes for it, as plentifully enriched with the giftes of nature, as another man.

All which being well and aduisedly of you considered. I am perswaded and fullye resolued in my cogitation, that you will not refuse my gentle offer, or disdayne to electe and accepte me for your loyall louer, and lawfull husband. who (aboue all other earthly Creatures) am moste desy∣rous for tearme of lyfe to be lincked with you in league of perfecte loue, and amity.

Thus hoping that by meanes of youre bountifull henignitie, and accustomed clemencye, I shall not fayle to fynde all thinges correspondent, and according to my hartes desyre, I leaue to trouble you a ny further for this time. And so fare you well.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

C. D. Being enamored of a fayre and vertous yong Gen∣tlewoman he craueth speedy comfort.

DEarely beloued, withoute whose grace and good will, nothing seemeth sweete or pleasaunt vnto me, no not to inioy my lyfe, vnlesse I may therewith obtayn thy loue which my hart aboue all thinges terrestiall doth chiefelye couet and desyre.

Loue onely hath caused me to wright vnto you, youre surpassing bewty hath perforce procured me to loue you, and your rate and singuler vertues haue chiefely kindled my affection towardes you, which affection doth so great∣ly abound in me, and so incessaunclye tormente my poore captiue carcas, that if you in whome it onely resteth to re∣dresse the same doe not speedily render some pleasant and precious pocion, to asswage the intollerable anguishe of this my moste greeuous and painefull mallady, my lyfe is like to be put in great perrill thereby.

The plant whilst it is yet yong and tender may be ea∣sily cut downe. but if it be let alone vntouched, it will in time grow so great, as with much labour it shall be almost impossible so to roofe it out, but that some smal sprigs shal still abyde behinde in the bowels of the earth which maye afterward receiue againe the former force, and accustomed greatnesse.

The waxe whilst it is warme, may be easily redused into what forme or fashion that a man will, but being let alone till it be colde, it wareth so harde and brittle, that it wil so∣ner brea••, then be brought to any perfect proportion, or v∣niformitye.

So likewise is it in loue, for the louer that loueth fayth∣fully, being dayly fedde with fayre wordes, if he doe not in short time obtaine the full effect of his desyre, the flame al∣ready kindled in his brest, will in the eude waxe so wonder full great, as all the water in riber and Nylus, shall not Page  [unnumbered] suffice to qu•••• the same, vntill the body of the pore my∣serable louer, be dissolued into dust.

Consyder therefore I beseech you of my sorrowful state, way my good wil and faithful affection towards you, po de•• my pittious plains, and deny not grace to him that lo∣ueth you more heartlye then his owne proper lyfe, who to obtaine your loue would not feare to passe the perrilious waues of vnhappy Helispont, but as a faithfull Leander to please my beloued Hero, would be ready to attempte it how daungerous soeuer the aduenture were.

Refuse not then this my reasonable request, seing that by yielding therevnto, you can no way be pr〈…〉 a∣ny 〈◊〉 hindred, and yet by 〈◊〉 it, shall put my life in great perrill, purchase your selfe an euill reporte, and bee of all men accounted for cruell.

Thus hoping that your pittifull hart will, through this my moste humble submission be moued to take pittie and compassion vpon my sorrowfull state, I doe for this 〈◊〉 commit you to the tuition of the Almighty, whome I pray still to protect you.

Finis.

The Louer perceiuing the loue of his beloued mistresse, not to be so perfect as before time it had bene, wrighteth vnto her as follo∣weth.

BEing of late my dearely beloued Mistresse, by meanes of your comly personage adorned and garnished with so many good giftes of nature, allured or rather proc••ed to loue you, and 〈◊〉〈◊〉•••ion or •••en of disdayne∣fulnesse to appeare in you, but that rather as it seemed to me you burned with the lyke flame, and had as fyrin∣ly fixed your fancey vppon me, as I was fully determined for earme me of lyfe to loue you.

But alas, at this present, to my great griefe and conty∣nuall Page  [unnumbered] vexation both of mynde and body. I 〈◊〉 the con∣trary.

For now your mynde, vpon what occasyon I knowe not, is cleane altered on a sodaine, so that in steede of friendly lookes I finde a scowning countinaunce, and in seede of the gentle wordes, and curteous communication which before you used with me, I haue nowe nothing else but froward and vnfriendly aunsweres, vngratefull words and priuy poysoned nippes, which seemeth to mee farre more bitter then gall so is my good will requyted with disdayne and my curtesy with vnkindnesse.

Oh who would thinke that in one indued with so many 〈◊〉 vertues as you are, there shoulde bee abiding so foule a vice as is ingratitude, who woulde iudge that in so comly a body, there should remain so vnconstāt a hart, what haue I done that misliketh you; wherein haue I of∣fended you? whereby haue I deserued this great discurte∣sy at your handes? Are you intrapped with the loue of any 〈…〉 on〈◊〉 our loue in suspicion, haue you at any time bene vpbrayded with the same, or else hath some mallicious person practised by slaunderous re∣portes to raise reproch vpon me in my absence, or vitered 〈◊〉〈◊〉 wordes against me, thinking thereby to hinder our loue, and cause you to conceiue some euill opinyon of me.

If it be so, or howsoeuer it be, I pray you let me haue in∣telligence, and before the truth of the matter be thorowlye tryde, to their great shame that shall reporte it (as I hope it will fall out in the end, when my aunswere is harde,) condemne me not without desert, for certainelye to my knowledge, I neuer yet did any thing wherewith you should be offended, neither haue I offred any occasyon whereby you might be iustly moued to thinke euill of me, if I haue it was vnwittingly, and being hartily sorrye for the same, I doe moste humblye craue pardon at youre handes.

Page  [unnumbered] Great is the loue I beare vnto you, and so greeuous is the wound that I haue receiued thereby, that if you, who are the iewell of my ioye, preseruer of my health, and the very lengthner of my lingering lyfe, do not minister some comfortable consarne, or pleasaunt potion, to mittigate the intollerable torment of my moste mischieuous malla∣dye, I am not able long to abyde it, and therefore I moste humbly beseeche you to haue go••〈◊〉 to my sorow∣full state, and seing I am so fyrmely bente, for tearme of lyfe, to loue you aboue all other, cast cleane from you all disdainefulnesse, and render mee lyke loue againe, on your part.

For thereby you shall purchase to your selfe so faythful a friend, as will alwayes continue moste constant.

Needelesse it is for me to make any plainer declaration of my desyre, for I am certaine that my good meaning is already well knowne vnto you, but this I say, and I take God to witnesse, I speake it vnfaynedlie, that the woman liueth not on the earth at this hower, which I coulde so will like of, as I doe of you, or with whome I had rather matche my selfe, so greatlye haue I bene affectioned vnto you, euen from the verye firste hower that I behealde you, vntill this presente time, and therefore committing my selfe into youre handes, in whome it onelye resteth to redresse my sorrowes, and comforte my carefull hart in hope to receiue such answere from you, as shalbe gret∣ly to my contentation I leaue to trouble you any fur∣ther for this tyme.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A Louer being doubtfull of the good will of his Ladye; by meanes of the mutabillitie that many times he founde to be in her, craueth more assuraunce at her handes.

HOw great good will I haue long time borne you, my welbeloued Parmenia, both by my wordes and deedes you haue plainely perceiued and albe it that you haue diuerse tymes in plain speeche professed the like vnto me, yet haue I to my greete 〈◊〉〈◊〉 so variable in all youre actions as I knowe not bowe to conceiue of you.

I pray you deale with me as a friend, feede me not with fayre wordes vnlessedeedes doe followe accordingly, pro∣mise no more then you minde to perfourme, geue mee not hope to putme afterwardes in dispaire, nor receiue me in∣to your fauour, and afterwardes reiect me, for surely in so doing, you shall not onely deceiue me, but also greatly de∣fame your selfe, when your double dealing shalbe known to others.

If you can fancy me, then without any exceptions con∣sent to take me for him whome you determinete loue and liue with all for ouer.

If you like not of an) then answere it directlie, that I may know what to trust vnto, and so by refraining your companie, proue to represse my fund affection, which is so firmelie fixed vpon you, as I feare me, I shall hardelie re∣proue it.

Faine would I more often frequente youre companye, but fearing to purchase your displeasure, and wishing ra∣ther to suffer my selfe the greatest sorrow that may be sus∣tained, then you by any meanes should abide any blame at all for my sake I haue hitherto restrained my desire with the rule of reason, and satisfied my selfe often times with Page  [unnumbered] the onely sight of the place where you frequent, as if your selfe had bene present with me, such is the force of affecti∣on, but yet desyring rather to haue it so in deede, then to deme it so, to the end I may haue conference with you, for uerse occasyons.

I moste hartely, pray you let me either vnderstand your minde by writing or else deuise some meanes that I may haue accesse vnto you to talke with you in proper person till which time I shall neuer take rest, but bee continallye troubled with a thousand imaginations.

Thus wishing you as well to fare, as your hart would desyre, I commit you to the tuition of the Almighty whom I pray still to protecte you.

Finis.

The Auctour writing to his sister that was towardes ma∣riage, teacheth how to make choise of a husband and howe to behaue her selfe beeing a Wyfe.

DEarely beloued Sister, vnderstanding that you are dis¦posed to enter into the blessed state of Matrimony, but with whome I know not; and remembring the sage sen∣tence of that wise Emperour Marcus Aurelius, that the greatest reward which one friend may imparte to an ther is to succour him with good councell, knowing also that there is nothing wherein councell is more requisite then in marriages, for that whosoeuer falleth in the perrilles there of can finde no remedy for it, withoute farre greater perrill, I haue thought good, as far as my weake wit, and slender skill can serue me, to shewe you my simple opinion therein.

Like as fyre my welbeloued Sister, whiche lieth long in kindling, yeeldeth farre greater heate then that whiche by and by taketh flame, so loue which hath had long continu∣aunce Page  [unnumbered] is of muche more force then that whiche groweth vpon the sudain; for as fyre that flameth at y first blowing is but as a flash that by and by vanisheth, so is the loue which groweth on the sodain like vnto a shadow y whilst the sonne shineth, sheweth plain and perfit to the sight of euery man, but when it is darkened, cannot be deserned at all. So are there some men of so lewde a condicion that so long as her bewty abydeth, to whome they professe good wil, her wealth not deminished and her countinaunce see∣meth chearefull, they continue their loue, but if the contra∣ry happen, then by and by their loue waxeth-colde, for if her bewtie by sicknesse be abated, her wealth through a∣nye casualtie deminished, or her chearefull countinaunce by sorrow changed to the contrary, then forgetting her ver¦tues which stil remain perfect, they are cleane changed to a∣nother likenesse, their swete meliferons words, become as bitter as wormwood; their seeking plain misliking, & their great loue disdaine. This is the fruiet of such sodaine loue, this is the best commoditye that may thereby bee reaped, for this we see by experience, that the fruict which is sonest ripe, is sonest rotten, and the Fyre whiche is sonest kind∣led, is soonest quenched, and so likewise is the hotest loue sonest cold. wherfore I pray you, and friendly aduise you; in anye wise to take good deliberation in the choyse of your husbande, trye him thorowlye, before you trust him that shall make you anye offer of his loue.

And though his outwarde behauyoure seeme honest, though his proffers be large, his perswations greate, and his person please you neuer so well, yet till you haue well considered of the matter and consulted with youre friendes, who will neyther aduise you to doe anye thing that is hurtfull, nor perswade you from that whiche maye be profitable vnto you, yet giue not your consent in anye¦wyse to their flattering intisementes.

For as the Fowler with his fained Notes deceiues the sillye byrdes, and bringes them to their haue, so be there Page  [unnumbered] some that vnder a fayre shew of fayned friendshippe, seeke by all meanes possible to corrupte the myndes, of honeste maydens, and intice them to folly, which they shall hardly withstand, if they lend care to their lewde language. But were it so that you shoulde lighte vppon one that indeede loued you dearelye, and ment to deale plainely, and ho∣nestly with you, if you haue not respecte as well to other matters as to that, it wil in the end redo〈…〉d to your great discommodity, for although in the beginning, few marri∣ages seeme vnpleasant, yet being made only for loue with∣out further aduisement they cannot chose but haue a sadde and sorrowful ending: and therfore I would aduise you to chose such a one as should not only be wise & welthye, but also well inclined welthy to maintaine you, according to your desyre, & his degree, wise to gouern those goods that God hath sent him, with reason & discretion, and of a good conuersation to the intent that he may not onely order you as he ought to do, but also bring vp his famely vertuously and in the feare of God for so shall God blesse him the bet∣ter, and al his actions shal haue a good & prosperous end, wheras if he be vicious, & of a lewd disposition, his inferi∣ors following his example; wilbe the like, for such husband such wife, such father; such childrē, & such maisters such ser∣uants, so is it commonly seene & so were he neuerso subtle witted or indued with neuer so great abundance, one way or other al wold quickly go to wrach, & come to nothing, & for as much as the welth of y husband doth chiefely depēd vpon the good behauiour of his wife, in y disposing of his houshold affairs, I wold aduise you to be careful in all ho∣nest order to conserue & increse y which your husband shall get, & not to spend super fluously vpon such trifles & toyes as are but spurs to prouoke pride, which is the pathway to perdition, whereof the wife (being the cheefest member of her husbands body,) shall be the fyrst that shall feele the smart of it, when exchanging her gorgious garments for a pore patched cote, her sine dellicate dishes for such scraps Page  [unnumbered] as she can get for Gods sake, her soft fetherbeds, and beds of downe, for a Pallet of straw, her gorgious buildinges, for a silly sheepe cote, or such like, to be brought to that ex∣tremity, that she shall rather wish to dye then line in that miserable estate, when hauing bene a mistresse of manye seruauntes in her youth, she shall her selfe in her olde age, be faine to be a slaue and seruaunt to such as sometime she could commaund, for it is no doubt, a right miserable and wretched state, atorment intollerable, and a greefe in er∣plicable, after so great plenty, to feele such extreame penn∣ry, but it is thee meetest reward for them that wil not take heede before hande, to repent them afterward when it is to late, for when the steede is stolne, it is no time to shutte the stable dore, and it is most certaine, one far from their good, are neare to their harme, for euery man basteth the fut hog, but the leane shall burne before he be basted, my meaning is, and it is dayly seene, that he that hath enough shal haue more, he that hath a little shall haue lesse, but hee that hath nothing at all of himselfe, let him be sure that hee shall get nothing of another, wherfore (if you couet to be accounted wise and vertuous) knowing how great an ennemye shee is to her selfe, and into how many daungers she intrudeth herself that is negligent and care to conserue her husbands goods, you will rather forbeare thinges necessary then you would be any hinderaunce to your husbands profit, yea, & trauaile al that you can to increse his stock, rather then one whit to deminish it, wisely waighing that if any thing hap¦pen to her husband, otherwise then well, she is not one of the laste, as I sayde before, which shall feele the smart of it. And thus praying you to print these precepts in your hart for feare to be oe cedious, I leaue to trouble you anye more at this time.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A pore yong mau being vehemently vexed for the loue of a fyre yong Gentlewoman, craueth her fa∣uour for the conseruation of his lyfe, almost consumed.

SO rare is your bewtye, bountie and grace that as the Adamante draweth yron vnto it, so doeth the same draw the mindes of men vnto you, and like Cirses charmes, transporte them into what likenesse you list.

What maruaile is it then though manye worthy Gen∣tlemen being bleared with the bright beames thereof, be inforced for the appeasemente of their paine, to seeke all meanes possible to purchase your gracious good will and fauour.

But my good mistresse, amongst so many that haue made sute vnto you, I maruaile you make choyse of none, per∣aduenture it is because you cannot conceiue any constan∣cye or faithful fidelitye to be 〈◊〉 in them, if it be so, behold I am he that can and will, if you please, supply that wante in you, & as you shold wel know, if you made profe of me, I doubt not but you should find me such a one, as in all re∣spectes, would sufficiently satisfy your minde, yea, and so content you, as the choyse of me, shoulde not once mooue you to chaunge, the basenesse of my byrth be any blemishe to your dignitie, or your gentle accceptance to my offered curtesye, moue you to repente you of so gracious a deede. Pardon me I pray you, if in this my rude writing, I haue committed anye crime, or done that which is contrarye to duty, and impute the fault onely to loue, whose burning flames hauing long tyme boyled in my brest, not being a∣ble now, any longer to concele the same, I am thorow ve∣hemency of the paine, that thereby oppresseth my pore pen∣siue hart, enforced at the last, in hope of redresse, to reueale Page  [unnumbered] my hidden greefes vnto you, being the onely Mistresse of my health, life and libertie, without whose grace or mine owne great perrill may not possiblye be repressed, nor my paines appeased, for if they coulde, then eyther feare of youre displeasure, reason or duty woulde haue deteined me from this my present purpose, and presumptious at∣tempt, and not haue permitted mee with woe to wade so farre, in so daungerous a Sea, seing therefore that the pas∣sion which oppresseth me is so paynefull, the fyre that wasteth me so vehement, the cause proceeding from you, and the remedy resting only in your hands, I thinke you cannot be so cruell harted, but that pitty will moue you in the ende, to rue the callamitye that youre poore Ser∣uaunt hath for your sake so long sustayned, and to hasten the remedy for his releefe, that with the dewe of grace is∣suing from your moste delicate bodye, you may speedilye quenche that consuming fyre, whiche so continuallye inflameth his harte with desyre to doe suche seemelye ser∣uice as shall be acceptable vnto you, who accoumpting all payne but pleasure that hee sustaineth for your sake, yeeldeth himselfe wholye vnto your clemencye, to ren∣der him the finall sentence of lyfe or death, which her day∣ly expecteth.

Finis.

How foolish women are in the choyse of their Louers.

THe Smith whose toyling trade,
besmeard his face with sweat,
And made him like a Croyden Knight,
with working in the heate,
More lucky was in loue,
then Hercules the stonte,
The one inioyde a dainty Dame,
the other went without,
Page  [unnumbered]Vulcanus had to wife,
the Lady cheefe of loue,
Whose passing bewty peerelesse was,
as Paris plaine did proue.
But long Alsides serude,
fayre Iole at her will,
In womans weede, and yet did fayle,
to finde her fauour still,
For oft it is the trade
of women, to ellect
Lewde lumpish loutes deuoyde of wit,
and wiser wightes reiect,
A Clowne that from the Cart,
is come in court to serue,
In whome there is no kinde of cause,
good liking to deserue,
Shall catch a gallaunt gyrle,
and purchase at her handes
That others lack, whose faithfull hartes,
were scortcht with Cupids brands,
Then let him loue that list,
for I will leaue the lure,
Of those lewde Dames whose diuelish driftes,
such cursed cares procure.
Finis.

Damion wrighteth to his friend Sulippo exhorting him to seeke preferment whilst the time serueth.

SUrelye my Sulippo, when I remember the poore estate wherin thou presently standest, and cōpare it with the misery of this our age, I cannot but greatlye maruaile to see thy slacknesse in seeking preferment cōsidering how hard a time it is to attain to any thing, or to kepe y which wee haue with quietnesse, euerye one beeing readye to Page  [unnumbered] pull the meate out of an other mans mouth, that happy is he who hath any thing to stay vnto, for if he want he shall finde few friendes in his necessity that will pittie his po∣uertie or set to their handes to helpe him, be his neede ne∣uer so great, and therefore in my poore opinion, it is good (as they say) to hold open the poke whilst the pigge is pro∣fered, and taking the time whilst it serueth, to stryke whilst the yron is hote, and not with Esopes Dogge, lea∣uing the fleshe for the shadow, forgoe a thing certayne, for a hope vncertaine, least repentaunce follow, when it is to late, for better it is to haue one byrde in hande, then two in the Bushe, seeing that often times whilste the Gratie growes the steede starues, for hee that hopeth after deade mén shoes many times goeth barefoote many things hap∣pen betweene the cuppe and the lippe, and therefore di∣uerse meanes there may be hereafter to hinder that which may now without any great difficultie, be atchieued see∣ing there is nothing but onely the wante of mayster Mo∣liscus good will, to preuent your purpose, which by good perswation and earnest intreaty, may possibly be obteined the rather or yt he seeth mayster Glomerok so desyrous to doe you good, I pray you therefore finde some good time, so soone as conueniently you can, to talke with him about it, for as it greeueth me to see the life that now you leade, without either profite or pleasure, so am I very desyrous to haue you prouide in Sommer, against the extremity of the winter, and seeke somewhat in your youth, to mayne∣tain you in your age, to the end that you may be a comfort, and not a corsie, to the hartes of such your poore friendes, as wish you well, who will not fayle to do their vtturmost indeuour to further your preferment in all they may.

Thus praying you to remember what I haue written vnto you, and to put it in practise so soone as you maye, I bid you safe well.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

Varinus hauing found in the night time that which ple∣sed his fancy he commendeth it much, and craueth to be accepted for her seruant whom he intyrely loued.

THough many much mislike the long
and weary winter nights,
I cannot but commend them still,
for diuerse dere delightes,
The night we see, brings siluer sleepes,
sleepe courseth care away,
Cares being cast from out the mind,
there harboures happy ioye.
Where ioye aboundes, there helth hath place,
where happy helth doth bide,
There life lastes long, this proofe shewes plaine,
and may not be denyde:
Lo this the happy night procures,
which wrought my wished will,
Therefore I must before the day,
preferre and praise it still,
But some perhaps will maruaile much,
my fond effect to heare,
Let them not spare none knowes the cause,
why I so straunge appeare,
In this my vnacquainted verce,
such darke conceites to write,
Nor neuer shall, but onely I,
and she whose bewty bright,
Did in the darke beth bleare mine eyes,
and lend me perfect light,
She she it is that knowes full well,
from whence my Muse proceedes,
Yea she it is that both my blisse,
and hale together breedes,
Her presence doth procure my rest,
her absence workes my woe,
Page  [unnumbered] Her chearefull lokes doe cheare my hart,
her sorrow makes to flow
Whole floodes of teares from out mine eyes,
and killes my hart with care,
Whose comly grace and courtious deedes,
doe make her seeme as rare
As in the world the Phenix is,
and blessed would I count
My selfe, and say that in good luck,
all others I surmount,
Might I but once such grace obtaine
at her sweete handes, to be
Accepted as a seruaunt still,
no more is craude of me,
Which if I might atchieue, no doubt,
I would my selfe apply,
To please her so in eche respect,
as she should truely trie,
And so confesse, she neuer found
so fyrme a friend before,
Or seruaunt of such secresy,
that did esteeme her more:
What so she could commaund or will,
by day or else by night,
On sea or Land I would fulfill,
though death appeard in sight;
Or all the greefes that griefly ghostes,
in Limbo lake sustaine,
Should me assayle with furious moode,
to make me to refraine:
Yet should it not withdraw my minde,
from doing her desyre,
Hap good or ill, what so beside,
I would thereto aspyre,
And wages none at all Ieraue,
but leaue it to her will.
Page  [unnumbered] According to her curtesy,
her fancy to fulfill.
But when she hath made profe of me,
as she shall best deuise,
And sees my seruice what it is,
if she in any wise
Mislike thereof, let her withdraw
From me her fauour quight,
And vse what kinde of way she will.
to worke me more despight,
For as my health on her dependes,
So if I want her grace,
I loth my lyfe and wish for death,
to reaue my rufull race.
Finis.

A pore yong man being in loue with a ritch Gentlewo∣man, fynding it somewhat difficult to obtaine a∣ny fauoure at her handes, sought to sup∣presse his fond affection, but could not, wherfore he wrighteth vnto her in effecte as followeth.

THere is nothing in the vniuersall worlde, that maye more aptly be compared to the hatefull Hidra, then the painefull passions of lawlesse loue, for the Hidra being as∣sayled by Hercules, alwayes when he cutte of one of his heades, there sprang two in the place of it: so loue, the more it is suppressed, the more it increaseth and groweth still the greater, as is plainly proued by me, though to my payne I reporte it, for considering on howe high a place my minde was setled, wherevnto to attaine without great pertill, I found it almost impossible, I sought by reason to remooue it, if I might, but loue so abounded, that reason bare no Page  [unnumbered] sway and therefore being, ordeyned as it were by destiny to lyue and dye your loyall louer, and poore faythful Ser∣uaunte howesoeuer it shall please you to dispose of mee, yea, though I neuer gaine any grace at all at your handes, yet must I perforce still perceuer in the same, what soeuer betyde me, desyring rather to dye to confyrme my con∣stancye, then lyue and lacke your friendlye Fauoure, whereby I am onely sustayned, knowing that when my vnhappye death, shall happen to come to youre hearing, it will moue such remorce in youre harte, considering that the cause proceeded from your selfe, as you cannot but be greatly greeued, for the small regarde you hadde of so faithfull a friend, and then, when it is to late will repent you of your great ingratitude.

Be not therfore so obstinately bent (I beseech you) to seeke his confusion that woulde accoumpte all payne but pleasure, which he shoulde suffer in seeking your safetye, consyder in what case your deuine bewtye hath broughte him; and be not so carelesse of his welfare as you will suf∣fer him to perishe for wante of pittie that cannot receiue any comforte but by your clemencye, which to denye him, weare extreame crueltye, and woulde procure your per∣petuall infamy. The rather for that the remedye rested in you, and that my grefe being taken in time might be easi∣ly cured, to my comfort and your contentment, as you shal be forced in the end of your selfe to confesse, if you haue pittie vpon me, as I hope you will, wherein being fully resol∣ued, I rest for e∣uer.

Your pore faithfull friend and obe∣dient seruaunt.

Page  [unnumbered]

The great loue that Itafernes wyfe bare to her brother.

WHen I tafernes with all his famely,
Were taken captiue By Darius army,
And cast into prison with great extremity,
His wife euery day,
Came to the kings gate making pittifull mone,
That these her plaints to take pittie vpon,
At last he was moued with 〈…〉rcye alone,
As wrighters doe say,
In so much a one vnto her he sent,
Who willed hee then with right good intent,
In the Kings name to cast to lament,
And freelye to chose
The deliuery of one, and she should him haue,
Then she 〈◊〉 the rest, her Brother did craue,
Whose life and libertie she most sought to saue,
To lessen her woes.
The King then wondring that she would prefer
Her Brother before the rest that were there,
〈…〉 and children most deare,
This aunswere she gaue,
An other husband I may get quoth shee,
And other Children if Gods will it be,
But my Parentes being dead, more bretheren then he,
I neuer can haue.

A Louer that stoode at an vncertaine staye, wrighteth this for aunswere to a Letter that he recey∣ued from her whome he loued.

MYstresse 〈◊〉 I receiued your Letters whiche 〈◊〉 vnto me so 〈◊〉 as I a〈…〉 thereby broughte as it were into a 〈◊〉〈◊〉 of whiche I knowe not Page  [unnumbered] well how to winde me. Some time you giue me hope, and by and by crosse me with the contrary, your wordes are so obscure, as my simple capacitye cannot conceiue the mea∣ning of them, plaine dealing is best among friendes, good meaning must not be couered with a counterfet collour, I haue made you an honest demaund, but can receiue 〈◊〉 cer∣taine aunswere of it, if you thinke mee vnworthye of you, let me vnderstand it in plaine speeches, and I will soone seace my fute, for if you cannot fancy me, I neither maye, nor will inforce you to it.

If you like of my demaunde, driue mee not of with doubtfull delayes, for that is very daungerous.

Your vertuous education, and commendable quallityes, are the onely causes that haue constrained me to loue you. for the which I more esteeme you (being as you are) then otherwise I woulde doe, weare you neuer so welthye, you say my sute is reasonable, and yet ye reproue it as vnpro∣fitable, you confesse me to be worthy of you, and yet refuse to render your selfe vnto me, being the partie, whome a∣boue all other I chiefely desyre, and would most willingly possesse, if so it pleased you. In deede I confesse, that good deliberation and carefull consideration is to bee had in so waighty a cause which I had in remembraunce, before I made anye motion thereof vnto you, yet if there bee anye thing that I haue neglected, if you would let me vnderstād wherein, and what it is, it should be better respected, and being amisse, most willingly amended. And whereas you refuse to yeeld your consent without the counsel of others, to aske councel in any thing, it is commendable, and to fol∣low it (if it be good) is right profitable, but whose counsell you craue I know not, ••les it be your parentes, which if it be, the same I hope wil not be contrary to my conten∣tation: yet do I not so much depend vpon that, as I will thefore seeke to them, before I haue assayed you, & haue some assuraunce the thing, I seeke for, which is only in 〈◊〉 to graunt, and without you cannot be Page  [unnumbered] obteyned, or if it be, it must be by compulsion, & then were a mā better be without it, for forced mariages haue neuer good effect: But peraduenture you haue some further pur∣pose in it, then I am priuy vnto, it may be that you imagin my good will to be grounded vpon so light an occasyon, as gaining my purpose, I would quickly flie from my former professions, make more haste in the matter then reason re∣quyreth, or vse some drifte to deceiue your present expecta∣tion, but how farre my good meaning is from these ima∣ginations, God and myne own conscience only knoweth, you challenge me as if I had bene ouer lauishe of my lan∣gwage in blazing things abrode, that are not yet brought to passe which if I should doe (as I take God to witnesse. I haue not) I might worthely be condemned for a foole, & serue as a laughing stock to all men, that shal see it fal out otherwise hereafter. And therefore I beseech you put such imaginations out of your minde, and condemn me not as guiltye before you haue cause to accuse me. And in conclu∣sion I hartily beseech you, not to trifle oute the time anye longer, but to render me a ready aunswere to that whiche I demaund of you, howsoeuer it be, I care not, for I can better brooke a flat refusall, then suffer my selfe to be fedde with foolish hope, for a thing so vncertaine: and therefore where subtlely you say at the foote of your letter (yours, for so it may be) henceforward either refuse me flatly or else put downe plainely in the place of it (yours I am & wilbe) so shall you both satisfy me sufficiently, and also greatlye ease your self of the trouble that my tedious writing (if so you accoumpte it doth presentlye put you vnto, and so fare you well.

The straunge pangs of a pore passionate Louer.

NOt as I am, nor as I wish to be,
But as falce Fortune frames mytroward fate,
Page  [unnumbered] Euen so I am not bound nor fully free
Not quite forlorne, nor yet in quiet state,
I wish for death, and yet the death I hate,
This life leade I, which life is wondrous strannge,
yet for no life would I my lyfe exchaunge,
I seeke the sight of that I sigh to see,
I ioy in that which breedes my great vnrest,
Such contraries doe dayly comber me,
As in one thing I find both ioy and rest,
Which gaine he gets that is Cupidos guest,
For whome he catcheth in his cursed snare,
He giues great hope yet kils his hart with care,
Finis.

Of the thankefulnesse of a Dragon towardes a man that had brought him vp.

AS Bruson mention makes,
one Thoas in his youth
Brought vp a Dragon yong,
and of a certain truth,
when as he greater grne,
fearing his nature fell,
Conuaide him thence into a woode,
and left him there to dwell,
It hapned after Thoas was,
within that wood beset
with many Theeues, at which self time
not making stay or let,
when as the Dragon heatd his voyce,
which he remembred tho,
He rushed forth and rescued him.
from those that wisht his wo.
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

R. D. Being inflamed with the loue of a very bewtifull Gentlewoman, by a sodaine view that he tooke of her, doth colourably declare his case vnto her.

AS late I walkte abrode for my delight,
To put all oolish fancies from my minde,
It was my chaunce vpon a plot to light,
Wherein I did great cause of comfort fynde,
A goodly Garden garnisht euery where,
with fragrant flowers of sondry sort and sent.
No straunge deuice could be that wanted there,
That euer wit of man might well inuent,
A goodly christall spring ran through this place,
whose bankes with sundry trees was brauely dec••,
To shew ech thing by course, would craue long space,
And yet some part I should of force neglect,
But that which made me most of all to muse,
was to behold ech thing so well conuaide,
And could not finde that any one did vse,
To make abode therein, yet halfe afrayde
(Though cause were none) I durst not enter in,
But stoode as one amasde, this sight to see,
That whosoeuer then had present bene,
would not haue thought that life had lodgde in me,
My sences failde, my feete were fixed fast,
My sight waxt dimme, yet staring stoode I still,
But comming to my selfe againe at last,
And seing there no signe of any ill,
Nor none that would my passage once restraine,
But that the gates wide open stoode to all,
I banisht feare which earst procurde my paine,
And did determine what so should befall,
To enter in, and view it round about,
And so I did in deede without anoyt,
Page  [unnumbered] For nothing was there which I neede to doubt,
But all thinges turnde vnto my treble ioy.
when as I fully had ech thing suruaide,
And fed my fancy as it likte me best,
Into an Arbour I my selfe conuaide,
And there lay downe to take my quiet rest,
Into a heauy sleepe straight wayes I fell,
And then me thought there did appeare in place
Two gallant Dames, whose bewty did excell,
whereof the one beholding long my face,
At last with stealing steppes approcht more neare,
And drawing forth a knyfe in dreadfull wise,
Did pierce the part which I esteemde most deare,
which done from of the ground she gan to ryse,
And by and by did vanish out of sight,
which way or how, I could not well perceiue,
Wherewith I wakened (being sore afright)
So much it did my quiet rest beleaue,
And then my naked body I behilde,
To sec if any wound would there appeare,
But euery place with flesh was fully filde,
No wound was seene, ech place was fayre and cleare,
But when I rose, with mind to walke from thence,
Such grily greefe did gripe my tender hart,
As for a time it hindred my pretence,
And from that place I scarce had power to part,
yet as I could, although my pase were slowe,
I at my lodging did at last ariue,
And layde me downe in greefe which still did grow,
And greater waxe, and happy helth depriue,
I sought Phisitions helpe, my hurt to heale,
But Phisick could no whit at all preuaile,
And therefore still I must the same conceale,
And as a wight forlorne my wee bewayle,
Untill the louely Dame that did the deede.
Uouchsafe her grace to ease my present greefe.
Page  [unnumbered] In her it lyes my bitter bale to breede,
Or if she please to render me releefe,
which if she once refuse I am right sure,
My lothed lyfe that hope doth now prolong,
Shall not long time be able to indure,
But die I must, because she doth me wrong.
Finis.

An aunswere to a Letter that was not onely darke, but also so disordered, as their could no sence be perceiued in it.

VNloked for, I did receiue of late,
Such lynes as led me into double doubt,
Fyrst whence they came, and from what minyon mate,
And secondly I mused where about,
And for what cause they should to me be sent,
But when I had perusde them ouer well,
was neare the nere in knowing thy intent,
For such a sencelesse tale thou seemdste to tell,
And so confuse, as what I should couceiue.
Of any part thereof I knew not I,
To stayed Studients I the same will leaue,
By learned skill the secrete sence to trie,
Unlesse that thou that didst deuise the same,
wilt take the paines to glose vpon the text,
And set to shew the figures thou didst frame,
Whereby it seemes thy mind is much perplext,
For neither doth the matter match aright,
Nor yet the vearce but varries euery where,
I speake in sport, no cause I haue to spight,
And as thou wisht, so with thy want I beare,
Loue is a lawlesse Lord, both he and his
Are free from blame what so they doe or say,
And therefore though they sometime rome amis,
That once haue leaned to his lucklesse lay.
Page  [unnumbered] The fault is in the troward fittes they feele,
which leades their mindes to like of many thinges,
And still to turne as doth the whirling wheele,
where of the fruicte of folly freely springs,
Thy worthy worke may well compared be,
Unto A building brauely deckt without,
The inward partes whereof, who so shall see,
May finde it framde of clay and durt no doubt,
For on the same when fyrst myne eyes I bent,
The entraunce bare so braue a modesty,
That sure I thought some Muse the same had sent
From Helicon to please my fantasy,
But when I had a little further past,
Such paltrie pelfe presented was to me,
As braue me into other thoughtes at last,
So great a chaunge so sodainly to see,
But borrowed ware will beare no better show.
Au Ape's an Ape, though robes be neare so ritche,
The good from bad a man may easily know,
This makes thee claw whereas thou doest not itch,
well galdback well, although I rubde thee now,
If that thou winche, I way it not a might,
Such cloked cunning can I not allow,
Halt not henceforth when Criples are in sight,
For trust to this thy Peacockes borrowed tayle,
Cannot so craftely be coucht on thee,
But that the fine deuice thereof will fayle,
If it be matchte with those that kindly be,
In fine I wishe thee if thy mind be moude,
To beare the matter more at large set out,
which to prouoke thou hast so blindlye proude,
Then make it plaine, and cleare it cleane of doubt.
Let finenesse goe and vse no secrete slight,
To couer that which cannot be consealde,
And then will I as well pluck vp my sprightes,
To open that I haue not yet reuealde,
Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

C. L. Wrighting to a speciall Friende of his, that was somewhat greeued in minde, for certaine troubles that were happened vnto him, ge∣neth him such friendly consolation as was riquisite for one in his case.

SIr I am well assured, that in seeking to giue councell to one so wise, and consola∣on to one of such constancy as you are, I shall rather reape reproch for my rashnes then anye wayes purchase praise for my good meaning.

And although you that know what cause moued mee there vnto, doe not so conceiue it, yet they that shall heare reporte thereof, being ignoraunte of the greate good will that I heare vnto you, will be ready to imagine the worste of it.

But let them thinke what they list, I had rather that all others shoulde accuse me of presumtion, then that you should haue iust cause to condemne me of ingratitude, or thinke my friendship to be of small effect. And therefore though that I wright, be not such as should seeme to pro∣ceede from a man indued with greate learning, and wise∣dome, yet being well assured that whatsoeuer it bee, you will acceptablely receiue it, and conster it to the best, I will not fayle either by that or any other meane I may, at all times to manifest my good meaning vnto you, and the willing minde I haue to doe you good, so farre forth as my weake witte and small habillitye can reach vnto. It is not at al to be doubted, but y miseries that raine in this wretched world are very many, and very great, but as they are necessary meanes to make vs knowe our selues, and acknowledge the weakenesse of our humaine nature, so should wee pacientlye tollerate the troublesome toyles Page  [unnumbered] and cormentes thereof, as it is the part of a wyse and well disposed person alwayes to doe.

What though you be now forbidden the court whereyou haue long time liude in great estimation▪ wil you therfore so vnmeasurably vex & torment your selfe? as though your sorrow should neuer take end. It were no doubte a thing cleane contrary to your wisedome & grauitie, and would be a great disgrace to your noble nature, & the haughtinesse of your liberall hart, to be found vnable by the rule of reason to resist the fierce assaultes of froward Fortune: For as in time of prosperity you gouerned your selfe with great mo∣desty, so should you now that the contrary is happened, be armed with as great pacience to sustaine the senister and sorrowfull euents that this wretched world rendreth vnto all them that therein haue their abiding. Assure your selfe that those of your friends which now remain in the court, are well contented that you haue so forsaken it, withoute hope euer to retourne againe, not because they are willing to wante youre companye, for that is the thing they cheefely couet, but because they knowe the misery of that place to bee suche, as it shoulde rather bee shunted, then sought for by all those that loue to leade a quiet and peace∣able life.

And I am well assured, that if you had the power to en∣ter into the hartes of men to search their secrete thoughts you should find those of the Court accompanied with such continuall cares, frighted with such fearefull fancies, and fraught with such follyes, subiect to so many daungerous discommodities and perplexed with suche straunge and perrillous passions, as you your selfe since your departure from the Court neuer assayed the lyke, but would bee for∣eed to confesse that their greefes doe farre surmount your owne.

Now by how much more greeuous and difficult it is to see then to heare those thinges that molest the mynde if by meanes of the miseries & callamities of this wretched Page  [unnumbered] world, which so greatly disturbeth the quiet state of all earthly creatures, you suppose one place more painefull and troublesome to continue in then an other, by so much should you thinke the same to be in the Courte rather then any where else: for surely so it is, as your selfe know right well, what semblaunce soeuer you seeme to make to the contrary. But you wright sometime like a Gnato enforced of necessitye either to praise that whiche is praise wor∣thy, or to doe that which is not desent, but deseruing great blame: both which are cleane contrary to your natural in∣clination. Such is the wretchednesse of our age, that euery one esteemeth his owne estate to be moste miserable, what though men dispoyle you of those transitory ritches which Fortune sometime gaue you in great aboundance, yet can they not bereaue you of that rare and renowned ritches, to wete, the excellent vertues of the mynde, whiche God and Nature hath so graciously grafted in you from the begin∣ning, as they cannot by any meanes be altred or chaunged but do continually grow and increase in you, & are suffici∣ente though all thinges else were wanting, for a hart con¦ducted by honour, and gouerned by reason, to liue wel and happily withall.

Thus much haue I thought good to write vnto you to make proofe of your wisedome, to the end she should again receiue into her handes the reine of reason, which she had of late let slip, whereby you were driuen for wante of her good guiding to wander out of the right way, whiche you haue so long indueoured to follow. I pray you wright of∣tener vnto me, but let your letters conteine more myrth, then those that heretofore you haue sent mee, to the ende that I may finde for my satisfaction that my words were of the force to remoue from you al careful cogitations, and fill your mynde with ioy and gladnesse, praying the Al∣mighty to graunt you your health and hartes desyre in all things.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

A yong Gentleman whose loue was hindred by falce re∣portes, wrighteth to his Lady that had promi∣sed her good will, so her friendes would agree vnto it.

THe poore wearied Traueyler that after long sayling the Seas in no small daunger, and at the last attaineth to the wished Hauen, is blowne backe againe and brought into grea∣ter perrils then before, may most easily iudge the greatnesse of my greefes, who being raised to the toppe of all felicity by the fauour I found at your friendly hands for furtheraunce of my desyred comforte, I am nowe by myne owne euill desteny & the mallice of malicious make∣bates, who more respecting their owne priuate profit then honest reputation, the rather to preferre those that they like better of, haue raised such slaunderous reports against me, vtterly voyde of truth, as haue mooued them to mis∣lyke, that of late liked well of me, wherby I am driuen in∣to such dangerous doubtes, as if your good nature (which I know cannot conceiue any ill of them that deserue wel) did not somewhat releeue me, all hope of comforte would quickly die in me, and my cares so greatly abound, as my harte should neuer be able to harbour such ioy as is meete for my yong yeares.

Your mother as I heare, is so incensed against mee, as not withstanding the many reasons alleaged, and playne profes made to the contrary, she will not reuoke that euill opinyon which the false perswations of lewde persons hath caused her vniustly to conceiue of me, but let her or a∣ny other thinke of me what they list, so long as I knowe my self cleare of crime, and may be assured of your fauour I care not it all the world were bent against me, for as you are the first that euer my fancy coulde frame to lyke of, so I assure you, if my faithfull meaning find not good effecte Page  [unnumbered] courtesy, which was so greatly commended, hoping that at the least, you will afoord me a friendly answere, though I fayle of that which may better concent me, I know ther be many of greater wealth that you maye match withal if you will, but I am certaine that if you shoulde seeke tho∣row out the whole worlde it were not possible for you to fynde one that would so well account of you, or be more carefull for your commodity then I would be, if it mighte be my good happe to inioy you, with whome you might be assured to lead a more quiet and better contented lyfe, then with one whose parentes hath left him a large patrimony, of euill gotten goods, which is commonly as ill spent. And therefore if there be in me that may contente you, or it your fancy can frame to lyke of mee as I am, let mee finde it by your friendly aunswere, whiche I wil expect with assured hope to find it in all thinges agreeable to my good de∣syres, that greatly couet to be accoumpted.

Wholy yours, or not to be at all.

Finis.

Seigneor Francisco Vergelis, for a fayr ambling gelding, suffered one Seigneor Richardo Magniffico to talk with his wife, who gaue him no aunswere at all, but he aun∣swering for her, in such sort as if she her self had spoken it, according to the effect of his wordes, it came af∣terwards to passe.

MAny there are that conceiue so well of themselues, as in respect of their owne wisedome and knowledge, they thinke all other men to be but fooles, and voyd of vn∣derstanding, Page  [unnumbered] and yet my oftentimes see, 〈◊〉 those fiue headed followes whilst they ••deuour by their subtle deuises, to deceiue others, are in the end most deceiued themselues.

And therefore many opinyon he is worthy much blame, that goeth about by suche indirect meanes, to make more narrow 〈◊〉 of other mens wits thru is〈◊〉. And for more perfect proofe of their folly, you shall heare what happened to a Knight of Pistoy, vpon the like occasion.

In the Cittie of Pistoy hard by Florence, there was some∣time amongst the famely of the Vergelesies, a Knight cal∣led Fransisco, a man very rich, wise, and well experimen∣ted in many matters, but there withall beyonde all mea∣sure couetous. Hee hauing occasion to goe to Millan to be Potentate there, was prouided of all thinges fitte for his purpose, and agreeable to the honorable estate he was called vnto, saue onely of an 〈…〉ling Selding, for himself to ride vpon, and could get 〈◊〉 to his contentmence, but that he alwayes thoughte the price to great that he should pay for it. There was the same time in Pistoy a yong man named Richardo, decended of a base parētage, but yet very riche who for the neatnesse and brauery that he vsed in his apparrell, was of euery man cōmonly called Magniffico, & had of long time loued, & diuerse times courted (without any comforte of that he craued) the wife of Seigneor Fran∣sisco, that was exceeding fayre, & withall very honest.

Now it so happened, that this Magniffico had the fayrest ambling gelding in all Tuscan, which for the bewtye and goodnesse of it, he highly esteemed: And being manifestlye knowne, throughout the cittie, that he was enamoured of the sayde Lady, there was some that told Seigneor Fran∣sisco yt if he woulde request it in gift, he might easily obtain it for the loue he bare vnto his wife. Seigneor Fransisco burning with auirice, sent to seeke Magniffico, and reques∣ted to buy his Horse, to the end hee shoulde offer to giue it him. Magniffico hearing this, was very well pleased, and aunswered: Syr if you would giue mee all that euer you Page  [unnumbered]〈…〉 world I would not sell him, but yet you may haue him in gifte if you please, vpon the condition, that before you haue him. ••uay with your leane, & in your presence 〈…〉 to your wi〈…〉so farre from you, that none may 〈◊〉 only she, Seigneor Fransisco being led by couetousnes, and hoping to delude Magniffico, an∣swered that he was very welcontent whēsoeuer he wold, and hauing left him in the hall, hee wente to his wiues Chamber and cold her howe easilye hee might obtaine the ambling Gelding, commaunding her to come and heare what Magniffico would say, but not to answere him to a∣ny thing that hee shoulde alledge vnto her. The Ladye misliked much of this practise, but yet being bound to o∣bay her husbandes mind, she promised to do it, and follow∣ed him into the Hall, to heare what Magniffico woulde say.

Who hauing againe confyrmed the couenaunte, made with her husband, set himselfe downe by her, in one of the Corners of the hall, farre ynough from any body, and be∣gan to say in this manner.

Madame, I know your wisedome to be such, as I am wel assured, you haue long since plainely perceiued how great the loue is, that your bewty (which passeth without com∣parison all other that euer I saw) hath constrained mee to beare vnto you, I leaue to speake of the commendable quallities and rare vertues that remain in you, whiche haue power to vanquish the most hawty hart in the whole world, wherefore it is not needefull by wordes to declare vnto you, that the loue I beare you, is farre greater and more feruent, then euer man bare to any other woman liuing, whereby I am almost brought to that passe, that my miserable life is scarcely able to sustaine my poore weake∣ned members, and yet dare I be bolde to saye more vnto you, that if it be lawfull for men to loue when they are dead, as they may doe being aliue, I will loue you for euer.

Page  [unnumbered] And therefore you may well assure youre selfe, that you haue nothing whatsoeuer it be, either deare or good cheape that you may so well esteeme your owne, or make so sure accoumpt of, as of me, and of that I may be, and semblably of al that euer I inioy, and to the end you may be the more certain of that I say, I assure you I should accoumpt it for a singuler fauour that you would vonchsafe to commaund me any thing that I am able any way to performe, and may be agreeable to your good liking, for whatsoeuer it were, though all the world should saye and swere the con∣trarie I would surely put it in practise.

Now Madame being so muche youre owne, as you heare I am, I take boldnesse (not without great reason) to addresse my prayers to your highnesse, on whome onelye, and on none other, my rest welth and safety wholy depen∣deth, and as your most humble seruaunt, I humbly besech you, my dearest good & ye only hope of my loue, which nou∣risheth it selfe in the amourous fyre, hoping in you, that your good will shall be great, and your rigour (whiche you haue of long time extended towardes mee that am youre own,) so mollified, that feeling my selfe recomforted by your compassion, I may say that as by your be wyte I be∣came amourous, so doe I thereby also inioy the lyfe (which if your hauty hart incline not to my prayers) would with∣out doubt be in such sort consumed, as I shoulde shortelye dye, and so might you be called and accoumpted the Mur∣therer of me, and yet should my death be no honor at al vn∣to you, notwithstanding I beleeue that when at any time, the same should come to youre hearing, you woulde saye to your selfe.

Alas what euill haue I done, in not hauing compas∣syon of my Magniffico, and beeing then to late to repente you of any thing that is past, it will be vnto you an occasi∣on of very great greefe. Wherfore to the end that it come not so to passe, haue now some compassion vpon mee, and before I be past remedy, render me that which may releue Page  [unnumbered] me, for in you onelye doth it rest to make mee the moste contented, or most discoutented Creatureliuing, hoping alwayes that your curtesy shall be so great, as you wil not suffer me to receiue death, for recompence of suche and so great good will, as I beare vnto you, but will with a ioy∣full and gracious aunswere, recomforte my pore sprightes which altogither ouercome with feare, doe tremble at your presence.

Then Magniffico making an ende, and hauing shedde some teares, after many greeuous sighes, he began to har∣ken what the Lady wold answere, now she whom neither the long sutes made vnto her, the Iustes and Turneyes, nor lost time, or anye such like thing which Magniffico had done, for the loue of herre, had neuer before mooued anye thing at all to loue him, was nowe mooued there∣vnto by the effectuall words vttered by her moste feruente Louer, and began to feele that which she had neuer felt be∣fore, and iudged this to proceede only of loue, and though to fulfill the charge that her husbande had giuen her, shee held her peace, notwithstanding by the secret sighes which she sent forth it mighte easilye bee coniectured what aun∣swere she would willingly haue made to her beloued Mag∣niffico, if she might.

He hauing a while attended her aunswere, and per∣ceiuing that shee aunswered nothing at all, greatlye mer∣nailed, and beganne to perceiue the deceipte and sub∣tiltie of her husband, but yet in regarding her countinance and perceiuing some glaunces of her eyes cast vpon him, & besides that, remembring the sighes which shee sent foorth from the bottome of her hart, he receiued some good hope, And building herevppon bethought himselfe, and then be∣gan to aunswere her, as though she her selfe had sayde, in this manner.

Friend Magniffico, I did long since surmise that thy loue towardes me was very great and perfecte, and nowe am more certaine of it by thy words, whiche are of farre Page  [unnumbered] greater force wherewith I am as well contented as may be, notwithstanding if it seeme vnto thee, that I haue hi∣therto bene hard and cruell vnto thee, yet woulde I not haue thee to thinke that my harte hath bene suche as my countinance hath shewed me to be, but rather y I haue lo∣ued and held thee more deare then any other, but it was meete I should for y time conceale it, as well for feare of others, as to keepe my good name vnspotted, but now the time commeth, that I may make thee more plainely to vn∣derstand whether I loue thee or no, and giue thee a meete guerdon for the loue which thou, hast so long borne vnto me. Wherefore comfort thy selfe, and haue good hope, for Seigne or Fransisco must go within these fewe dayes, as Potentate to Millan (as thou thy selfe knowest) when thou for my sake hast giuen him thy good ambling Gelding, and so soone as he is gone, thou shalt be most welcome vnto me, and we wil then giue ful accomplishment to our loue, and therefore haue regarde from henceforth, when thou findest two, Kerchefes hanging out of my chamber window ouer the garden; and then in the Euening, when it is somewhat darke, repaire thou vnto me, by the garden dore, hauing good regard that no body see thee, & there thou shalt finde me ready to receiue thee, then will we take our pleasure togither, all the whole night, and make as greate cheare as we may.

When Magniffico had in the person of the Lady spoken all this; he began to aunswere for himselfe and sayde.

Deare Lady, my spirites are so much occupied by the a∣boundaunt ioy that I conceiue by your wordes, that I can hardlye frame an aunswere or vtter anye thing, to giue you condigne thankes for the same, and if I could, yet should I not finde sufficient time to gratifie youre good wil as I desyre, and as it is mere I should, and therfore I beseeche you, that what soeuer I desyre to do, (& cannot by wordes declare it) you will vouchsafe to conceiue the same in your minde. Only I assure you, that without faulte I Page  [unnumbered] will performe your charge, & order all my actions accor∣ding to your good direction, and when meete opportuni∣ty shall serue me, to receiue the fauour whiche you haue so freely promised, I wil inforce my self in all I may, to yeeld you the greatest thankes that I am able. And now hauing no more to saye vnto you at this presente, wishing you such ioy and welfare as your hart desyreth, I commit you to God.

For all this the Lady aunswered not a word wherefore Magniffico rise & began to retourne towards her husband who seeing him vp, went to meete him, and sayd O syr, what thinke you now? haue I kept promise with you? No Syr aunswered Magniffico, for you promised me that I should talk with your wife, & you haue made me to speake with an Image of stone.

This answere greatly pleased Seigneor Fransisco, who although he had a good opinion of his wife before, yet now he thought better of her then euer he did, and said: but yet the ambling gelding that was yours, is nowe myne. Wherevnto Magniffico aunswered: yea syr, but if I had thought to reape no better Fruite then this, by the fa∣uour I found at your handes, without demaunding the same, I would freely haue giuen you my Gelding.

And would to God I had done so in deede, for then had I not in selling him, bought mine owne sorrow, nor in seeking safety, lost my former liberty.

Seigne or Fransisco laughed hartely at this aunswere, and seing himself so wel prouided of an ambler, shortly af∣ter set forward on his iorney towardes Millan.

The Lady then remayning in her house all alone, thin∣king vpon the wordes that Magniffico had before time v∣sed vnto her, remembring his loue, and how he had for her sake, giuen her Husband his good ambling Gelding, seing also the sayd Magniffico diuerse times to passe to and fro before her dore, she said vnto her selfe.

What shall I doe? wherefore should I lose my youth? my Page  [unnumbered] hand is 〈◊〉 to Millan, and will not retourne again these sixe mouthes; and when will hee euer bee able to paye his arerages, what when I am old and care not for it? be∣sides that; when shall I euer finde such a friende as Mag∣niffico? I am now alone, and in feare of no body, and if it were knowne, yet is it better to doe it; and afterwarde to repent me, then not to doe it, and to be sorrye that I did it not.

And hauing thus debated with her self, in the end deter∣mining to take the time whilst it serued, she hanged one day two Kerchefes out at the Garden windowe, whiche Magniffico perceiuing (being very glad of it) he wet all se∣cretely so soone as the night was come, to the garden dore and found it open, and from thence went to an other dore which was at the entraunce of the house, where he meete with the Lady that attended his comming, who seing him come, rise vp, and went to meete him, and receiued him with great ioy, he hauing kissed and imbrased hee a hun∣dred times, followed her vp the stayres into her chamber, where bing ariued, they went by and by to bedde togither and then they knew the fynall end of their loue. And al∣though this were the firste time, yet was it not the last. For whilst Seigneor Fransisco was at Mil∣lan, and also after his retourne, Magnif∣fico, frequented the house, to the great comfort and content∣ment of them both.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

Theodore enamoured of Maister Emories daughter, that was his Maister, got her with child, for the which he was condemned to be hanged, and as he was whipped through the Stretes to the place of execution, being knowne to his Father he procured his pardon, and so Thodore married the maide whom he had before de flowred.

Whereby is signified the diuers dangerous and trouble∣some accidentes that dayelye happen vnto vs, by the power of loue, and frailty of fortune the only tormen∣ters of mans life.

AT what time the good King William go∣uerned Sicille, there was dwelling with∣in his dominions a yong Gentleman, na∣med Myster Emery the Abbot of Trap∣pani, who (amongest other wordly goo〈…〉 where with God had (inducd him) had ma∣ny fayre children, wherfore hauing great neede of Ser∣uauntes, as he came from the east partes, certaine Gallies of Genouiah Pirats, who in costing Armenia, had taken diuerse yong children, whome they ment to make money of, being aryued in the Countrey of Leuant at the same time that he passed thorow it, he bought certaine of them, thinking they had bene Infidels, amongest whom though the rest semed to be but Sheapheardes, there was one that appeared to be proceeded of a higher progenye, and to bee of more estimations, whose name highte. Theodore, who bring growne to mans state, (though he were vsed as a Slaue,) was notwithstanding brought vp, and nouri∣shed with maister Emeries owne Children, and inclining more to his naturall disposition then to his present For∣tune, he began to be very curteous, and well condicio∣ned, whereby he so much pleased mayster Emery as hee Page  [unnumbered] made him free, and for that he thought him to be an Infi∣del, caused him to be baptised, and named him Peter. And so good affiaunce he had in him, that shortly after, he com∣mitted to his charge all his most waighty affayres.

Now as Maister Emeries Children incresed, amongst the rest, a daughter of his waring very fayre and dellicat, after she had long remained vnmaried, seing her parēts so slow in bestowing her, at the last she fell very far in loue with Peter her fathers man: and as she estemed him greatly, and tooke delight in all his doings, so was she determined (if shame had not withheld her) to giue him vnderstanding of it. But loue eased her of that pain: For Peter hauing ther∣by conceiued some secrete hope, became so enamoured of her, as he neuer thought himselfe well withoute her com∣pany, notwithstanding hee was still in greate feare leaste some body should perceiue it, thinking that therein he did amisse.

The Mayde that easily perceiued his inwarde meaning, the better to imbolden him, made semblance vnto him (as it was true in deede,) that she allowed of his loue, and was well contented with it.

And in these tearmes either of them remained long time without daring to say any thing ye one to the other, though they both desired it very earnestly. But whilst they equally consumed in this amourous flame, Fortune (as if she had willed that which came to passe) found out a way to expel the feare, that so greatly hindred them. Which was, that Mayster Emery had not far from the towne of Trappani, a very fayre house, wherevnto his wife, with his Daugh∣ter and diuerse other their friends and familliers, resorted often times to passe the time, and make merrye togither, and one day amongst the rest, Peter being with her, after they had re mayned there a while, it happened, (as diuerse times it doth in the sommer season) that the wether ouer∣cast, wherefore the Gentlewoman and her company, (be∣cause the storme should not take them there) prepared them Page  [unnumbered] selues with all speede to retourne to Trappany. But Peter and Violenta that were yong and lusty (peraduenture no lesse prickt forward by loue, then for feare of the foule we∣ther) so farre out rid all the rest of their company, that they were cleane out of sight, after a little thunder, there came sodainely a great Dayle, and withall a foule foggy miste, which caused the old Gentlewoman and all her company to goe back againe with a Pessant of the countrey. But Peter and the mayde hauing none other refuge, but an old ruinate house, that was almost al faln to the ground, where no body inhabited, they were forced to enter into it, and there vnder a small conerture, that was yet remaining, they closely couched themselues, to defende the storme, which close couching was an occasion more fyrmely to v∣nite their hartes, and also the time and place aptly seruing them to discouer their amourous passions. Peter gaue the first onset, and said:

Mistresse Violenta I would to God that it woulde ne∣uer leaue hayling, and that I might still continue in this estate.

Wherevnto Violenta replied: Surelye so woulde I, and then taking ech other by the hand, and afterwards im∣brasing and sweetelye kissing (the Storme still con∣tinuing) before they departed from thence they inioyed the finall fruition of their vnfained affection, determining after that more often to take their pleasure togither.

At the last the storme ceased, and then they went to the next towne, where they attended the comming of the reste of their company, that they might go home altogither, and after this, diuerse times in a wise and secret manner, they excercised their loue, & so applyed their busines, that Vio∣lenta grew bigge, whiche greatly disliked either of them, wherefore she vsed al the meanes she might, to find reme∣dy for it, but it preuailed not.

And therefore Peter fearing to lose his lyfe, de∣termined to take his flight, and told her of it, which Vio∣lentaPage  [unnumbered] hearing, sware vnto him yt if he went away, she wold slay her self. Then Peter that loued her exceeding wel sayd vnto her. Alas my deare, why wouldst thou haue me tar∣ry, thy greatnesse will discouer our offence, which being known, thou maist easily procure thy pardon, but I poore wretth shall abide the punishment both for thy offence and mine own wherevnto Violenta aunswered, Peter my of fence must needes be known in deede, but as for thine, as∣sure thy self (if thou bewray it not) it shal neuer be known to any Seing you promise me so (said Peter,) I wil tarry, but take heede you keepe promise with me. Violenta that had couered her crime so much as she might, perceiuing yt her belly grue so bigge as she could no longer hide it, Dis∣couered the same one day to her mother (weping vitterly) & besought her to saue her life, her mother greued hereat be∣yond measure, & with a thousand threatnings demanding who was the authour of it, Violenta to the end that Peter should receiue no hurt thereby, fained an excuse altogether contrary to ye truth, which her mother beleeued, & to couer her daughters fault, sent her to a house that she had in the country, being there when the time was come yt she shold be brought a bed (crying as women vse to doe) & her mo∣ther not thinking that maister Emery (who sildom vsed to passe that way) would then come thither, it hapned that as he returned from hunting, and passed along by ye chamber where Violenta remained, he sodainly entred in, maruat∣ling to here her cry in that maner, & demaunded what the matter was. His wife seing him there, rise vp in greate gree fo{is} & told him all that was happened to their daughter, but her (not so excudulous as his wife) saide it was not possible she should be in that case, and not know who was the authour of it, & therfore would vnderstand the truth, for so (said he) she may peraduenture purchase my fa〈…〉, where otherwise, she muste make account to dye without pitty. His wife fought all he meanes she might, to satisfy her husband with that which her daughter had sayd, 〈◊〉 all Page  [unnumbered] her perswasions preuailed not, for running furiously with his naked sword in his hand to his daughter (who whilste her mother held him in talk,) brought forth her childe, and said vnto her. Tell me who is the father of this chyld, or else thou shalt presently die. His daughter dreading death, brake the promise which shee made vnto Peter, and tolde him how it happened, Mayster Emery hearing it, became so desperate through extreame anger, that hee could hard∣ly withhold his handes from killing her.

But after hee had sayde that whiche choller constrai∣ned him to speake, hee tooke his horse, and ridde to Trap∣pany.

And hauing recounted all the iniury that Peter had done him, to one Mayster Conrade, that was Liefetenant for the King in the same Towne, hee sodaynely e caused Peter to be taken, before hee doubted it, and exami∣ning him of the matter, hee confessed all that was done. And beeing within a fewe dayes after condemned by the liefetenant, to be whipped through the Towne, and after∣wards hanged.

Mayster Emery (to the ende to ridde the world at one instaunt of the two poore Louers, and their sillye infant) not hauing yet appeased his his wrath, by the death of Pe∣ter, which he had so procured, hee put poyson into a cuppe of wine, and deliuerd it to a seruaunt of his whom he most trusted, and withall a naked Sworde, saying.

Goe thy wayes with these to Violenta and will her in my name to chose one of these two deaths, either of poyson or of the Sworde, if not, I will cause her to bee burnt, in the face of the world, as she hath well deserued, and when thou haste so done, take the brate that she hath brought forth, and hauing dashed out his braines againste the wall, cast him out to be deuoured of Dogges.

When hee hadde giuen this cruell Sentence against his Daughter, and his little Nephew, the Seruaunt Page  [unnumbered] more apt to doe ill then good, went to the place where Vi∣olenta remained.

Peter being condemned as you haue harde, was drawne & whipped toward the gallowes, & so passing forward (as it pleased thē, yt were the ministers of iustice) ouer against an Inne, where at the same time were lodged three greate personages of Armenia whome the King of that country had sent to Rome as Ambassadors to the Pope, about cer∣taine necessary affayres, for a voyage that he had in hande, and being come thither to refresh and repose themselues for certaine dayes and greatly honoured of all the gentle∣men of Trappany, and especiallye of Mayster Emery.

These Embassadoures hearing them to passe by, that ledde Peter, came to the windowe to see what was the matter.

Peter that was all naked from the girdle vpward, with his handes bound behind him, being dilligentlye marked by one of them, that was a man of good yeares, and greate authority, named Phinec his blood began to rise through a certain natural motion that he felt within himselfe, which perceiuing he remembred him of his onelye sonne that a∣bout. xv. yeares before was taken from him by certaine Rouers, on the sea coste of Iasa of whome since that tyme he neuer had hard tidinges, and considering the age of the pore vnhappy wretch, whome they whipped, hee aduised him that if his sonne were liuing hee shoulde bee of the age that he seemed to be, wherefore seing his bosome, he began to suspece that it was his sonne, and thinking that if it were he, he would yet haue some remembraunce of his owne name and his Fathers, and of the Armenian tong.

wherefore when he was ouer against him, hee called him by the name of Theodore which Peter hearing, by and by lifte vp his head, and then phinee speaking to him in the Armenian tongue, sayd.

Of whence and whose sonne art thou? The Sergeaunts Page  [unnumbered] that led him, stayed in reuerence of the Ambassadoures, so that Peter aunswered, I am of Arminia, the sonne of one named Phinee, and was brought hether by certaine people. I know not of what country.

Which Phinee hearing knewe certainly that it was his sonne whom he had lost, wherfore weeping, he came down with his companyons, and ran to imbrace him, amongest all the Sergeauntes, and hauing cast ouer his shoulders a ritche mantle that he bore about him, requested them that led him to let him lose, and stay the execution, till they heard further of the matter, wherevnto they willingly ac∣corded, and led him backe againe to the place from whence he came.

Now had Phinee by this time knowledge of the cause, for the which theyled him in this sort to hanging, by the speeche of the people, wherefore he wente incontinentlye with his Companions and seruauntes, to mayster Con∣rade, and said vnto him.

Syr, he whome you sende to be executed as a Slaue, is a free man, and my sonne, and is readye to take to hys wyfe, her whome they say he hath deflowred, may it there∣fore please you to remit the execution, till it be knowne whether she will haue him to her husband, to the end it be not found (if she he content) that you haue transgressed the Lawe.

Maister Conrade hearing that hee was the sonne of this Ambassador, maruailed greatly, and imputing great fault to Fortune, confessed that which Phinee had sayde, to bee moste truet So he retourned incontinently to his house, and sent one with all speede, to seeke Maister Emery, and to tell him all that was happened, mayster Emery, that thought his Daughter and her yong sonne were alredye dead, was the heauiest man in the world, for that which he had done, knowing well that if she were not dead, all that was amis might now be amended, wherfore he sent with all speede to the place where his Daughter remained, to Page  [unnumbered] the end that if they had not fulfilled his commaundement they should not do it at all, he that went thither, found the seruant that mayster Emery had sent thither, who hauing set the sword and poyson befor his Daughter, because shee made no hast to take the one nor the other, vsed manye threatnings against her, and would haue constrained her to take one of them.

But when he heard the commaundment of his mayster, he let her alone, and retourning vnto him, tolde him howe the case stoode.

Mayster Emery very well contented with it, wente to the Ambassadour Phinee, and weeping, excused himselfe so well as he could for that which was happened, requy∣ring pardon at his handes, and promising him that if The∣odore would take her to his wife, he was right well con∣tent to bestowe her vpon him.

Phinee willingly excepted of his excuses, and aun∣swered.

It is my will and intente that my Sunne take youre Daughter: and if he will not, I am contente the sentence pronounced against him, be put in execution: Phinee and mayster Emery being agreede, they went togither to seeke Theodore, at the place where he was, yet feareful of deth, and ioyfull that hee had founde his father, who asked him what he was determined to doe in this matter.

Theodore hearing that Violenta should be his wyfe if he would, his ioy was so great, that he thought he leaped out of Hell into Paradice. And said, he would thinke him∣selfe right happy to haue it so.

They sent likewise to Violenta to knowe her intente, who hearing that which was hapned to Theodore, and what should come to passe, where before she was the hea∣uiest Creature liuing onely expecting death, after manye doubts, in the end giuing confidence to that whiche they tolde her, she receiued some comforte, and aunswered, that if she might obtaine her desyre in this behalfe, there coulde Page  [unnumbered] not happen a thing that would more content her, then to be the wife of Theodore.

But notwithstanding, shee sayd shee woulde doe that which her father had commaunded her, if so it pleased him, when this matche was thus agreede vppon on all sides, mayster Emery made a sumptious feast, to the greate con∣tentment of the whole Cittie.

The yong wife comforting herself and causing her yong chyld to be nourished, became shortly after more fresh and fayre then euer shee was. And when Phinee retourned againe from Rome, she vsed such reuerence towards him as apperteined to her Father, and he being very well con∣cent to haue so fayre and honest a Daughter, hauing cele∣brated the Nuptials with great cheare and feasting, he re∣ceiued her for his Daughter, and euer after so accoumpted her, and within a fewe dayes after, he, his sonne, his fayre Daughter, and his little Nephew tooke shipping and sayled to Laiazze where the two Louers re∣mayned so long as they liued in peace and quiet∣nesse.

Finis.
Page  [unnumbered]

¶ One named Salard, departing from Genes, came to Montferat where he transgressed three commaunde∣mentes that his Father gaue him by his last will and Testamente, and being condemned to dye, was deliue∣red, and retourned againe into his owne countrey.

RIghte happye and blessed is that chylde which with dutifull reuerence, sheweth himselfe obedient to his Parentes, For in so doing, he fulfilleth the commaunde∣ment that God hath giuen him, and shall therefore liue long vpon the earth, hauing good successe in al his affayres, where contrariwise, the dis∣obedient child, is alwayes accoumpted miserable, and moste vnhappy, for commonly his enterprises haue an e∣uel and wicked end, as you may easily perceiue by this fa∣ble following.

In Genes (which is a very auncient Cittie, and possibly as full of pleasaunt delightes as any other) there was dwelling not long since a Gentleman named Renaulde Scaille, a man truely no lesse abundant in the giftes of for∣tune, then in the graces of the minde: moreouer (being so ritch and learned as he was) he had a sonne named Salard, whome he loued most intyrely. Wherefore like a good and louing Father: he instructed and taught him, not suffering him to want any thing that was profitable or praise wor∣thy for him.

Now it happened that Renauld being well stricken in yeares, fell into a great and greeuous mallady, and per∣ceiuing himself to be at the point of deth, sent for a Scriue∣ner to make his wil, whereby he constituted Salard for his heyre, praying him as a good father, to obserue three com∣maundementes which he prescribed vnto him, without e∣uer transgressing them.

The fyrst was, that for any loue that he bare to his wyfe Page  [unnumbered] he should neuer reueale his secretes vnto her.

The second was, that he should not nourish and bring vp as his childe, or take for his heyre one that was not of his owne issue.

The thyrde was, that he should neuer subiect himselfe to anye Lorde that gouerned his countrey after his owne minde.

This done, hauing blessed him, hee tourned his heade towardes the Wall, and shortlye after yeelded vp the Ghost.

Now Salard, that after his Fathers death, remayned sole inheritour of all his goods and possessions, perceiuing himselfe to be yong, ritch, and of a good progenie (where∣as he should haue wholy applied himselfe to consyder of his fathers commaundementes, and the waighty affayres which were falne vnto him by the newe possession of his patrimony) he determined to take a wyfe, and suche a one, and of such a famely as should well content him. So well he applied his businesse, & followed the matter so effectu∣ally, that ere one whole yeare was fully expired after his fathers decease, hee matched himselfe with one Theodore, Daughter to one maister Odescale Doria, a Gentleman of Genes, and one of the chiefe in all the cittie.

This Gentlewoman being faire, and very well fauou∣red, though she were somewhat shrewish, was so well be∣loued of her husband, as neither by day nor night he could well abide to be out of her company. When they had con∣tinued a while togither, withoute hauing any issue at all betweene them, Salard with his wiues consent, was minded to chose some one for his childe Adoptiue, contra∣ry to the will and commaundement of his father, purpo∣sing to bring it vp as his own, and according to that his determination, presently putting the matter in execution, he chose for his chylde adoptiue, a yong gyrle named postu∣me that was Daughter to a poore widdowe, dwelling in the same Cittie, whome they brought vp, somewhat more Page  [unnumbered] wantonly then well besee men.

Shortly after, Salard determined to depart from Genes, & to inhabite in some other soyle, not because he had anye disliking of the place (for there was no reason he shoulde, hauing there no want of any thing that was meete for his degree or agreeable with his mind) but was moued there∣vnto by a desyre of chaunge, which is commonly incident to all those that be at their owne libertye, and not subiecte to any superiour wherefore hauing gotten a good Purse of Money, with Iewels and other great ritches, beeing also well furnished with Horse and Armoure, hee de∣parted from Genes with his wife Theodore, and his adou∣ted Daughter Postume, and passing towardes Piemont, at the last he ariued at Montferat where hée was honou∣rably receiued of the inhabitauntes, and there in shorte time growing in acquaintaunce with diuerse, hee often times rid on hunting with the townes men and cittizens, vsing with them diuerse other excersices, wherin he tooke delight. So that his magnificence beeing well knowne throughout the whole Littie, he was not onely beloued of the common sorte, but also greatly esteemed and honou∣red amongest the cheefest, which comming to the eares of the Marques, that gouerned those partes, he desyred to be acquainted with him, and perceiuing that hee was yong, rich, noblye borne, wise and apt to all thinges, hee began to beare so great affection towardes him, as hee could not suffer him one whole day togither to hee out of his company.

To be shorte, so great was the loue of the Marques to∣wards Salard at he would neuer vouchsafe his fauour to any mā, vnlesse his sute were first preferred by him. wher∣fore Salard, seeing himselfe in so greate credite with him, sought all meanes possible to please him, in doing that which might be most to his liking.

The Marques that was but yong, tooke great pleasure in Hawking and to hunte wilde Beastes, for which cause Page  [unnumbered] as it appertained to the degree of so greate a Lorde, hee kepte continuallye great store of Hawkes and Houndes, and would neuer goe abroade but he would haue Salarde with him.

It happened one day about the rest, that Salard being a∣lone in his chamber, began to thinke of the great honour that the Marques had done vnto him. Then he began to consider the good graces, honest behauiour and good ma∣ners of his adobtiue daughter Postume, and how obedient she was to him and his wyfe at al assayes, and in this sort discoursing with himselfe he sayde.

Was not my Father greatly deceiued? surely I holeeue he doted, as commonly all old men doe. I know not whe∣ther it were through follye or madnesse that hee did with such instance expresly commaunde mee not to bring vp a chylde that was not of myne owne issue, nor to subiect my selfe to will of a Lord that gouerneth his Subiects af∣ter his owne fancy.

Nowe doe I plainely perceiue that all his commaun∣dementes were vtterlye voyde of truth: For Postume that is my adopted Daughter, and not of myne owne is∣sue, is so good a chylde, so witty, gentle, well borne, and obedient, as may be required.

Besides that, is it possible that I shoulde anye where be better beloued then I am of the Marques: It is certain that in these parts he hath no superioure, neither is there any his equall and yet the loue he beareth me, and the ho∣nour that dayly he doth vnto me, is so great, that it is com∣monly saide I am his gouernour, whereat I haue greate meruale.

There are manye doting olde men, who hauing vt∣terly forgotten what they themselues were in their youth, would prescribe newe Lawes and ordinaunces to theire Children, and all in vaine doe trouble their heads to bring them to that which they themselues neuer obserued. Page  [unnumbered] whervnto they are not moued, for any loue that they be are vnto them, but onelye to trouble them long time with the obseruation of such thinges as are to no purpose. But se∣ing in two of those pointes whiche my Father prescribed vnto me (contrary to my expectation) I haue had so good successe, I minde eare long to make tryall of the thyrde, though it be nothing needefull, for I am well assured that my sweete wife, and friendly companion, will soone confirme the same by her harty good will, and loyalty to∣wardes me.

Then shall shee, whome I more esteeme then the Apple of my epe, gene the world plainely to vnderstande, with what great folly these olde men bee commonlye infected, that adde to their will such ridiculous conditions. Nowe may I well suppose that my father when he made his will was depriued of his right sence, and that as a witlesse old man, and one voide of al good iudgement, hedid the dedes of a childe.

In whome may I better haue confidence, then in myne owne wife, that hath forsaken her Father, her mother, her bretheren, her Sisters, and her owne famely, to bee made one only soule & one onely hart with me, so ye I may safely reueale my secretes vnto her of what importaunce soueuer they be: I will then make proofe of her loyalty, not for that I doe any thing misdoubt her, (being wel assured that she loueth me more then her selfe) but to followe therein the custome of other yong men that doe fondly suppose it to be a very foule offence, to breake the lewde and beastlye ordi∣naunces of their parentes, which doe continually run into some foolish fransie, as men that are beside themselues.

Thus Salard with himselfe deriding his fathers wise and profitable precepts, purposed to breake the thyrd, and therevpon, departing from his owne house, went straight to the Marques Pallace, and going to the place where his Hawkes were kept, he tooke the best of them, and that which the Marques made most account of, from the perch, Page  [unnumbered] where it stoode, and secretely conuayde it to the house of a deare friend of his named maister Frauncis, and presen∣ted the same vnto him, praying him of all loues to keepe it, vntil such time as he did further vnderstand his mind, and then retourning home againe, he secretlye sine one of his owne Hawkes, and carried it to his wife saying vnto her in this manner. By welbeloued Theodore I cannot as you may well perceiue, haue one hower of rest for the Marques. For be he a hunting hawking, excercising feats of armes, or vsing any other exploit, he always kepeth me occupied with one thing or other, in so much as I am of∣ten in the case that I know not wel whither I be deade or aliue, wherfore to preuent our dayly excercise in hawking. I haue played him such a pranke, as when hee knoweth of it, will not very well content him, and peraduenture it may be a meane to make him keepe at home for a while, & so shall we take our ease togither. Then sayd his wyse, what haue you done vnto him? he aunswered, I haue slain the best and most beloued hawke that he had, and I beleue when he misseth it, and can heare no ridinges of it, he will die for anger and despight, and therwith pulling out the dead hawke from vnder his cloke, he deliuered it vnto his wife, charging her to cause it to be dressed, saying: that hee would feede vpon it for the Marques sake. Theodore he∣ring her husbands words, and seing the dead hawke, made great mone, and turning towardes him, began to reproue him for the offence he had committed, I maruaile (qd. shee) how you could finde in your hart to commit such a trespas against my Lord Marques that beareth you so great good will, he hath alwayes bene ready to pleasure you in anye thing yt you would requyre of him, appointing you alwais the place next to his owne person: Alas husband you haue hereby wrought our vtter ruine. It by il hap the Marques haue the least inkeling in the worlde that you haue done this e〈…〉l deede, what shall become of you, surely you shalbe in great daunger of death where vnto Salard replyed, how Page  [unnumbered] should the Marques haue vnderstanding of it. There is none but onely you and I that kneweth it, wherefore I praye you for the loue that you alwayes haue borne, and yet doe beare vnto me, that you will not in anye wyse re∣ueale it, for if you doe, it will be an vtter vndoing to vs both.

Doubt you not of that (sayde she) For I had rather dye a thousand deathe then open such a secret. when ye hawke was drest and redy to be eaten, Salard and Theodore seite them down togither at the table, but Theodore notwith∣standing that he requesting her very earnestly would not eate one morsell of it, wherefore perceiuing how small ac∣coumpt she made of his wordes, as one throughly angred, he gaue her so great a blow on the face with his fist, yt her cheeke waxed very red withall, whiche shee taking moste greeuouslye fell straighte on weéping, and complayned greatlye of his hard dealing with her. And then rising from the table in a furye, m••bling the Deuils Pater noster, threatned him, and sayd, shee woulde remember that iniury all the dayes of her lyfe, and woulde bee suffici∣ently reuenged both of the time and place.

The next morning rising before her ordinarye hower, without longer lingering shee repayred to the Marques, telling him from point to point of the death of his Hawke.

Which when the Marques hearde, being inflamed with fury, not attending what Salard coulde says for himselfe, presently caused him to be apprehended, and without fur∣ther consideration of the matter, condemned him to bee hanged, and to lose all his goods, which he willed to be de∣uided in three partes.

whereof the first should remaine to his wife for accusing him, the second to his Daughter, and the thyrd to him that would doe the execution vpon him.

Now Postume that was grown to be a proper and well fauoured wench, vnderstanding what sentence was pro∣nounced against her father (for yt which she was not greatly Page  [unnumbered] greeued) went presently to her mother, and saide vnto her.

Mother were it not much better that I by doing the ex∣ecution vpon my father, should gaine the third part of his goods, then a straunger. Then her mother said surely my Daughter this is very well considered of thee, and I wold it were so, for by that meanes all his goods shall remaine vnto vs two.

Then went Postume to the Marques and made sute vn∣to him that she might be suffred to do the erecution vppon her father, to the end that (as he had ordayded) she mighte thereby be the inheritour to the thyrde parte of his goods, vnto which her request, the Marques willingly accorded. Salard hauing now secretly informed his friend Fraunces of the whole matter, intreated him that when hee was at the poynt to be led to the place of execution there to be put to Death; he would presently repayre to the Marques and intreate him that he might be brought before him, and that he would vouchsafe to heare him speake a few words vn∣to him before he was put to death, which Fraunces when time serued perfourmed accordingly.

In the meane time Salard remayning in Prison with Fetters on his feete, expecting euery hower when hee should be led to the place of execution, there to suffer a shamefull and villanous death, weeping bitterlye sayde vnto himself. Now doe I playnly perceiue but all to late that my good aged father with his long experience did councell mee to nothing but that which mighte haue bene for my health and singuler commoditye, if I hadde well wayed it.

He like a wise and graue person gaue me good preceptes, and I vnhappy and witles wretch made no accoumpte of them. Hee commaunded me for my ease and benefiete, to flye from these my domesticall ennemies, and I to offer them the occasion whereby they myghte bring mee to this shamefull ende, and to make them conceaue Page  [unnumbered] great pleasure in the same, haue yeelded my self vnto their discretion, my father lykewise knowing ye nature of Prin∣ces to be such, that in one hower they will both loue and lothe, exhault and pull downe, counsayled mee to seperate myselfe from them, and I (foole that I am) to be depriued of my goods, honour, and life, haue moste vnwisely sought after them. O Salard, Salard, how much better had it bene for thee, if thou hadst followed thy fathers steppes, suffe∣ring flatterers and lewde persons to follow the courts of princes and great Lordes. Now see I wel to what passe I am like to come, by trusting to much to my selfe, my wic∣ked wife, vngracious chylde, and aboue all by to much be∣leeuing the fained friendship of the vngrateful Marques. Now do I certainly know how well hee loued me, what might he doe worse vnto mesurely nothing, for at one in∣staunt would he take from me my liuing, lyfe, and honour, alas how soone is his great loue conuerted to cruell and bloody hatred. I see this prouerbe is not vsed in vain, that these great Lords are like vnto wine in a Bottle, which is good in ye morning, & nought at night. O vnhappy Salard, to what pas art thou come? where is thy nobillitye? where are thy deare parents? where is thy great riches? where is thy loyaltie? thy good inclination, and accustomed curtesy, O my louing father, I am sure if you were aliue againe to beholde me in this place, redy to suffer death, For noue o∣ther offence but onely for infringing your fatherlye pre∣cepts (through the dede) deferue far greter punishment thē this that is now alotted vnto me, you wold not only seke & sue to saue me from it, but wouldalso hartily pray to God to haue pitty vpon my youthful sollies, & the offences wher vnto only ignorance hath led me, and I for my part, as an vnthankfull and disobedient chyld, that haue not regarded your graue and gracious commaundements, would moste humbly beseech you to pardon me. whilst Salarde was thus debating and complayning to himselfe, his daughter Postume (like a good and wel instructed hangman) repay∣red Page  [unnumbered] to the prison where he was, and there most arrogantly presenting her selfe before him, she vsed these or such lyke wordes.

Father for as much as froward fortune hath ordayned that according to the sētence which my Lord Maques hath pronounced against you, you shall this day withoute faile suffer death, and that the third part of your goods is alot∣ted vnto them that shall doe the execution vppon you, knowing the loue that you beare vnto me, I hope you wil not be offended, if I take vpon me to discharge that office my selfe, for in so doing your goods shall not fall into the handes of straungers, but remain stil to those of your own famely, wherwith me thinketh you should be well conten∣ted. Salard yt gaue attentiue eare to his daughters wordes aunswered in this manner, God blesse thee my daughter, thy reasons are very good, and please me right well, and though before I were vnwilling to dy, now would I glad¦ly end my life, doe then thy office my daughter, and deferre the time no longer, Then Postume crauing pardon & kis∣sing him, toke the halter and put it about his neck, exhor∣ting him to take his death patiently, Salard seing ye sodain alteration of thinges, was greatly astonished, and issuing out of the prison, with his hands bound behind him, & the halter about his neck, accompanied with the bayly, & al the rest of the officers, & ministers of iustice, he passed with all speede to the place of execution, & being come thither tour∣ning his back towards the ladder that was set against the Gibbet, hee wente leyserlye from steppe to steppe till hee came to the toppe, where with a stoute courage and sta∣ble countenaunce, he behelde the people on euery syde, de∣claring treateablye and with greate deliberation, why he was brought thither and then in louing and friendlye mauer, crauing pardon for-al his faults and offences com∣mitted, earnestlye exhorted Chyldren to bée obediente to their Parents and Elders, when the people had hard the whole cause of Salards condemnation, there was not one Page  [unnumbered] in the companye but wepte, and greatelye lamented the hard hap of this pore yong man, and desyred GOD to giue them the grace to take example by him.

Whylste these thinges were a doing, his friende Frauncis (that was not vnmindefull of him,) tooke his way to the Marques Pallaice, and hauing founde fit op∣portunity, in moste humble wise besought him that Salard mighte be broughte to his presence, to aunswere for himselfe, before he were put to death, assuring him that he was not gilty of the crime for which hee had condemned him, and there vppon pleadged his lyfe: So that at the last with much adoe, the Marques caused Salard to be re∣priued, & willed he should be brought vnto him with the Haltex about his neck, and the hangman with him, which was perfourmed accordingly.

So soone as Salard was come into the Marques pre∣sence, whose face was yet in flamed with furye, he beganne with a bolde courage, and stedfast countenaunce (not be∣ing any thing troubled in his mind,) to vtter these & suche lyke wordes.

Syr, the seruice that I haue done you, and the loue that I haue borne vnto you, hath not deserued the outrage and shame that you haue done vnto me, in condemning mee to dye so shameful & villanous a death. And although the dis∣pleasure that you haue taken against my great follye, (if it may be termed olly) hath prouoked you to vse such cruel∣ty towards me, contrary to your naturall disposition, yet shoulde you not so sodainly condemne me to deth without hearing me aunswere in my owne behalfe, for the Hawke, for the which you are so much offended, (thinking that it is dead) is yet liuing, and in as good case as euer it was.

And thinke not Syr that I woulde presume to kill or hurt it by any meanes, but this that I haue done, was to make try all of certaine thinges that I was before warned of, as I will manifest vnto you.

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