Infomotions, Inc.Epicoene: Or, the Silent Woman / Jonson, Ben, 1573-1637

Author: Jonson, Ben, 1573-1637
Title: Epicoene: Or, the Silent Woman
Publisher: Project Gutenberg
Tag(s): cler; daup; daw; ott; mor; jonson; dauphine; hau; master truewit; ben jonson; john daw; mistress otter; jack daw
Versions: original; local mirror; HTML (this file); printable
Services: find in a library; evaluate using concordance
Rights: GNU General Public License
Size: 51,397 words (really short) Grade range: 7-9 (grade school) Readability score: 68 (easy)
Identifier: etext4011
Delicious Bookmark this on Delicious

Discover what books you consider "great". Take the Great Books Survey.

The Project Gutenberg Etext of Epicoene:  Or, The Silent Woman
by Ben Jonson
(#4 in our series by Ben Jonson)

Copyright laws are changing all over the world, be sure to check
the laws for your country before redistributing these files!!!

Please take a look at the important information in this header.
We encourage you to keep this file on your own disk, keeping an
electronic path open for the next readers.

Please do not remove this.

This should be the first thing seen when anyone opens the book.
Do not change or edit it without written permission.  The words
are carefully chosen to provide users with the information they
need about what they can legally do with the texts.

**Welcome To The World of Free Plain Vanilla Electronic Texts**

**Etexts Readable By Both Humans and By Computers, Since 1971**

*****These Etexts Are Prepared By Thousands of Volunteers!*****

Information on contacting Project Gutenberg to get Etexts, and
further information is included below, including for donations.

The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation is a 501(c)(3)
organization with EIN [Employee Identification Number] 64-6221541

Title: Epicoene:  Or, The Silent Woman

Author: Ben Jonson

Release Date: May, 2003  [Etext #4011]
[Yes, we are about one year ahead of schedule]
[The actual date this file first posted = 10/10/01]

Edition: 10

Language: English

The Project Gutenberg Etext of Epicoene:  Or, The Silent Woman
by Ben Jonson
******This file should be named eotsw10.txt or******

Corrected EDITIONS of our etexts get a new NUMBER, eotsw11.txt
VERSIONS based on separate sources get new LETTER, eotsw10a.txt

This Project Gutenberg Etext Prepared by:^M
Amy E Zelmer <>^M
Robert Prince <>^M
Sue Asscher  <>^M

Project Gutenberg Etexts are usually created from multiple editions,
all of which are in the Public Domain in the United States, unless a
copyright notice is included.  Therefore, we usually do NOT keep any
of these books in compliance with any particular paper edition.

We are now trying to release all our books one year in advance
of the official release dates, leaving time for better editing.
Please be encouraged to send us error messages even years after
the official publication date.

Please note neither this listing nor its contents are final til
midnight of the last day of the month of any such announcement.
The official release date of all Project Gutenberg Etexts is at
Midnight, Central Time, of the last day of the stated month.  A
preliminary version may often be posted for suggestion, comment
and editing by those who wish to do so.

Most people start at our sites at:

Those of you who want to download any Etext before announcement
can surf to them as follows, and just download by date; this is
also a good way to get them instantly upon announcement, as the
indexes our cataloguers produce obviously take a while after an
announcement goes out in the Project Gutenberg Newsletter.

Or /etext02, 01, 00, 99, 98, 97, 96, 95, 94, 93, 92, 92, 91 or 90

Just search by the first five letters of the filename you want,
as it appears in our Newsletters.

Information about Project Gutenberg (one page)

We produce about two million dollars for each hour we work.  The
time it takes us, a rather conservative estimate, is fifty hours
to get any etext selected, entered, proofread, edited, copyright
searched and analyzed, the copyright letters written, etc.  This
projected audience is one hundred million readers.  If our value
per text is nominally estimated at one dollar then we produce $2
million dollars per hour this year as we release fifty new Etext
files per month, or 500 more Etexts in 2000 for a total of 3000+
If they reach just 1-2% of the world's population then the total
should reach over 300 billion Etexts given away by year's end.

The Goal of Project Gutenberg is to Give Away One Trillion Etext
Files by December 31, 2001.  [10,000 x 100,000,000 = 1 Trillion]
This is ten thousand titles each to one hundred million readers,
which is only about 4% of the present number of computer users.

At our revised rates of production, we will reach only one-third
of that goal by the end of 2001, or about 4,000 Etexts unless we
manage to get some real funding.

The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation has been created
to secure a future for Project Gutenberg into the next millennium.

We need your donations more than ever!

As of July 12, 2001 contributions are only being solicited from people in:
Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho,
Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota,
Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North
Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota,
Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia,
Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

We have filed in about 45 states now, but these are the only ones
that have responded.

As the requirements for other states are met,
additions to this list will be made and fund raising
will begin in the additional states.  Please feel
free to ask to check the status of your state.

In answer to various questions we have received on this:

We are constantly working on finishing the paperwork
to legally request donations in all 50 states.  If
your state is not listed and you would like to know
if we have added it since the list you have, just ask.

While we cannot solicit donations from people in
states where we are not yet registered, we know
of no prohibition against accepting donations
from donors in these states who approach us with
an offer to donate.

International donations are accepted,
but we don't know ANYTHING about how
to make them tax-deductible, or
even if they CAN be made deductible,
and don't have the staff to handle it
even if there are ways.

All donations should be made to:

Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation
PMB 113
1739 University Ave.
Oxford, MS 38655-4109

The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation is a 501(c)(3)
organization with EIN [Employee Identification Number] 64-6221541,
and has been approved as a 501(c)(3) organization by the US Internal
Revenue Service (IRS).  Donations are tax-deductible to the maximum
extent permitted by law.  As the requirements for other states are met,
additions to this list will be made and fund raising will begin in the
additional states.

We need your donations more than ever!

You can get up to date donation information at:


If you can't reach Project Gutenberg,
you can always email directly to:

Michael S. Hart <> forwards to and
if your mail bounces from, I will still see it, if
it bounces from, better resend later on. . . .

Prof. Hart will answer or forward your message.

We would prefer to send you information by email.


Example command-line FTP session:

login: anonymous
password: your@login
cd pub/docs/books/gutenberg
cd etext90 through etext99 or etext00 through etext02, etc.
dir [to see files]
get or mget [to get files. . .set bin for zip files]
GET GUTINDEX.??  [to get a year's listing of books, e.g., GUTINDEX.99]
GET GUTINDEX.ALL [to get a listing of ALL books]

**The Legal Small Print**

(Three Pages)

Why is this "Small Print!" statement here?  You know: lawyers.
They tell us you might sue us if there is something wrong with
your copy of this etext, even if you got it for free from
someone other than us, and even if what's wrong is not our
fault.  So, among other things, this "Small Print!" statement
disclaims most of our liability to you.  It also tells you how
you may distribute copies of this etext if you want to.

By using or reading any part of this PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm
etext, you indicate that you understand, agree to and accept
this "Small Print!" statement.  If you do not, you can receive
a refund of the money (if any) you paid for this etext by
sending a request within 30 days of receiving it to the person
you got it from.  If you received this etext on a physical
medium (such as a disk), you must return it with your request.

This PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm etext, like most PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm etexts,
is a "public domain" work distributed by Professor Michael S. Hart
through the Project Gutenberg Association (the "Project").
Among other things, this means that no one owns a United States copyright
on or for this work, so the Project (and you!) can copy and
distribute it in the United States without permission and
without paying copyright royalties.  Special rules, set forth
below, apply if you wish to copy and distribute this etext
under the "PROJECT GUTENBERG" trademark.

Please do not use the "PROJECT GUTENBERG" trademark to market
any commercial products without permission.

To create these etexts, the Project expends considerable
efforts to identify, transcribe and proofread public domain
works.  Despite these efforts, the Project's etexts and any
medium they may be on may contain "Defects".  Among other
things, Defects may take the form of incomplete, inaccurate or
corrupt data, transcription errors, a copyright or other
intellectual property infringement, a defective or damaged
disk or other etext medium, a computer virus, or computer
codes that damage or cannot be read by your equipment.

But for the "Right of Replacement or Refund" described below,
[1] Michael Hart and the Foundation (and any other party you may
receive this etext from as a PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm etext) disclaims
all liability to you for damages, costs and expenses, including

If you discover a Defect in this etext within 90 days of
receiving it, you can receive a refund of the money (if any)
you paid for it by sending an explanatory note within that
time to the person you received it from.  If you received it
on a physical medium, you must return it with your note, and
such person may choose to alternatively give you a replacement
copy.  If you received it electronically, such person may
choose to alternatively give you a second opportunity to
receive it electronically.


Some states do not allow disclaimers of implied warranties or
the exclusion or limitation of consequential damages, so the
above disclaimers and exclusions may not apply to you, and you
may have other legal rights.

You will indemnify and hold Michael Hart, the Foundation,
and its trustees and agents, and any volunteers associated
with the production and distribution of Project Gutenberg-tm
texts harmless, from all liability, cost and expense, including
legal fees, that arise directly or indirectly from any of the
following that you do or cause:  [1] distribution of this etext,
[2] alteration, modification, or addition to the etext,
or [3] any Defect.

You may distribute copies of this etext electronically, or by
disk, book or any other medium if you either delete this
"Small Print!" and all other references to Project Gutenberg,

[1]  Only give exact copies of it.  Among other things, this
     requires that you do not remove, alter or modify the
     etext or this "small print!" statement.  You may however,
     if you wish, distribute this etext in machine readable
     binary, compressed, mark-up, or proprietary form,
     including any form resulting from conversion by word
     processing or hypertext software, but only so long as

     [*]  The etext, when displayed, is clearly readable, and
          does *not* contain characters other than those
          intended by the author of the work, although tilde
          (~), asterisk (*) and underline (_) characters may
          be used to convey punctuation intended by the
          author, and additional characters may be used to
          indicate hypertext links; OR

     [*]  The etext may be readily converted by the reader at
          no expense into plain ASCII, EBCDIC or equivalent
          form by the program that displays the etext (as is
          the case, for instance, with most word processors);

     [*]  You provide, or agree to also provide on request at
          no additional cost, fee or expense, a copy of the
          etext in its original plain ASCII form (or in EBCDIC
          or other equivalent proprietary form).

[2]  Honor the etext refund and replacement provisions of this
     "Small Print!" statement.

[3]  Pay a trademark license fee to the Foundation of 20% of the
     gross profits you derive calculated using the method you
     already use to calculate your applicable taxes.  If you
     don't derive profits, no royalty is due.  Royalties are
     payable to "Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation"
     the 60 days following each date you prepare (or were
     legally required to prepare) your annual (or equivalent
     periodic) tax return.  Please contact us beforehand to
     let us know your plans and to work out the details.

Project Gutenberg is dedicated to increasing the number of
public domain and licensed works that can be freely distributed
in machine readable form.

The Project gratefully accepts contributions of money, time,
public domain materials, or royalty free copyright licenses.
Money should be paid to the:
"Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation."

If you are interested in contributing scanning equipment or
software or other items, please contact Michael Hart at:

[Portions of this header are copyright (C) 2001 by Michael S. Hart
and may be reprinted only when these Etexts are free of all fees.]
[Project Gutenberg is a TradeMark and may not be used in any sales
of Project Gutenberg Etexts or other materials be they hardware or
software or any other related product without express permission.]


This Project Gutenberg Etext Prepared by:^M
Amy E Zelmer <>^M
Robert Prince <>^M
Sue Asscher  <>^M




THE greatest of English dramatists except Shakespeare, the first
literary dictator and poet-laureate, a writer of verse, prose,
satire, and criticism who most potently of all the men of his time
affected the subsequent course of English letters: such was Ben
Jonson, and as such his strong personality assumes an interest to
us almost unparalleled, at least in his age.

Ben Jonson came of the stock that was centuries after to give to
the world Thomas Carlyle; for Jonson's grandfather was of
Annandale, over the Solway, whence he migrated to England.
Jonson's father lost his estate under Queen Mary, "having been cast
into prison and forfeited."  He entered the church, but died a
month before his illustrious son was born, leaving his widow and
child in poverty.  Jonson's birthplace was Westminster, and the
time of his birth early in 1573.  He was thus nearly ten years
Shakespeare's junior, and less well off, if a trifle better born.
But Jonson did not profit even by this slight advantage.  His
mother married beneath her, a wright or bricklayer, and Jonson was
for a time apprenticed to the trade.  As a youth he attracted the
attention of the famous antiquary, William Camden, then usher at
Westminster School, and there the poet laid the solid foundations
of his classical learning.  Jonson always held Camden in
veneration, acknowledging that to him he owed,

"All that I am in arts, all that I know;"

and dedicating his first dramatic success, "Every Man in His
Humour," to him.  It is doubtful whether Jonson ever went to either
university, though Fuller says that he was "statutably admitted
into St. John's College, Cambridge."  He tells us that he took no
degree, but was later "Master of Arts in both the universities, by
their favour, not his study."  When a mere youth Jonson enlisted as
a soldier, trailing his pike in Flanders in the protracted wars of
William the Silent against the Spanish.  Jonson was a large and
raw-boned lad; he became by his own account in time exceedingly
bulky.  In chat with his friend William Drummond of Hawthornden,
Jonson told how "in his service in the Low Countries he had, in the
face of both the camps, killed an enemy, and taken opima spolia
from him;" and how "since his coming to England, being appealed to
the fields, he had killed his adversary which had hurt him in the
arm and whose sword was ten inches longer than his."  Jonson's
reach may have made up for the lack of his sword; certainly his
prowess lost nothing in the telling.  Obviously Jonson was brave,
combative, and not averse to talking of himself and his doings.

In 1592, Jonson returned from abroad penniless.  Soon after he
married, almost as early and quite as imprudently as Shakespeare.
He told Drummond curtly that "his wife was a shrew, yet honest";
for some years he lived apart from her in the household of Lord
Albany.  Yet two touching epitaphs among Jonson's "Epigrams," "On
my first daughter," and "On my first son," attest the warmth of the
poet's family affections.  The daughter died in infancy, the son of
the plague; another son grew up to manhood little credit to his
father whom he survived.  We know nothing beyond this of Jonson's
domestic life.

How soon Jonson drifted into what we now call grandly "the
theatrical profession" we do not know.  In 1593, Marlowe made his
tragic exit from life, and Greene, Shakespeare's other rival on the
popular stage, had preceded Marlowe in an equally miserable death
the year before.  Shakespeare already had the running to himself.
Jonson appears first in the employment of Philip Henslowe, the
exploiter of several troupes of players, manager, and father-in-law
of the famous actor, Edward Alleyn.  From entries in "Henslowe's
Diary," a species of theatrical account book which has been handed
down to us, we know that Jonson was connected with the Admiral's
men; for he borrowed 4 pounds of Henslowe, July 28, 1597, paying
back 3s. 9d. on the same day on account of his "share" (in what is
not altogether clear); while later, on December 3, of the same
year, Henslowe advanced 20s. to him "upon a book which he showed
the plot unto the company which he promised to deliver unto the
company at Christmas next."  In the next August Jonson was in
collaboration with Chettle and Porter in a play called "Hot Anger
Soon Cold."  All this points to an association with Henslowe of
some duration, as no mere tyro would be thus paid in advance upon
mere promise.  From allusions in Dekker's play, "Satiromastix," it
appears that Jonson, like Shakespeare, began life as an actor, and
that he "ambled in a leather pitch by a play-wagon" taking at one
time the part of Hieronimo in Kyd's famous play, "The Spanish
Tragedy."  By the beginning of 1598, Jonson, though still in needy
circumstances, had begun to receive recognition.  Francis Meres --
well known for his "Comparative Discourse of our English Poets with
the Greek, Latin, and Italian Poets," printed in 1598, and for his
mention therein of a dozen plays of Shakespeare by title -- accords
to Ben Jonson a place as one of "our best in tragedy," a matter of
some surprise, as no known tragedy of Jonson from so early a date
has come down to us.  That Jonson was at work on tragedy, however,
is proved by the entries in Henslowe of at least three tragedies,
now lost, in which he had a hand.  These are "Page of Plymouth,"
"King Robert II. of Scotland," and "Richard Crookback."  But all of
these came later, on his return to Henslowe, and range from August
1599 to June 1602.

Returning to the autumn of 1598, an event now happened to sever for
a time Jonson's relations with Henslowe.  In a letter to Alleyn,
dated September 26 of that year, Henslowe writes: "I have lost one
of my company that hurteth me greatly; that is Gabriel [Spencer],
for he is slain in Hogsden fields by the hands of Benjamin Jonson,
bricklayer."  The last word is perhaps Henslowe's thrust at Jonson
in his displeasure rather than a designation of his actual
continuance at his trade up to this time.  It is fair to Jonson to
remark however, that his adversary appears to have been a notorious
fire-eater who had shortly before killed one Feeke in a similar
squabble.  Duelling was a frequent occurrence of the time among
gentlemen and the nobility; it was an impudent breach of the peace
on the part of a player.  This duel is the one which Jonson
described years after to Drummond, and for it Jonson was duly
arraigned at Old Bailey, tried, and convicted.  He was sent to
prison and such goods and chattels as he had "were forfeited."  It
is a thought to give one pause that, but for the ancient law
permitting convicted felons to plead, as it was called, the benefit
of clergy, Jonson might have been hanged for this deed.  The
circumstance that the poet could read and write saved him; and he
received only a brand of the letter "T," for Tyburn, on his left
thumb.  While in jail Jonson became a Roman Catholic; but he
returned to the faith of the Church of England a dozen years later.

On his release, in disgrace with Henslowe and his former
associates, Jonson offered his services as a playwright to
Henslowe's rivals, the Lord Chamberlain's company, in which
Shakespeare was a prominent shareholder.  A tradition of long
standing, though not susceptible of proof in a court of law,
narrates that Jonson had submitted the manuscript of "Every Man in
His Humour" to the Chamberlain's men and had received from the
company a refusal; that Shakespeare called him back, read the play
himself, and at once accepted it.  Whether this story is true or
not, certain it is that "Every Man in His Humour" was accepted by
Shakespeare's company and acted for the first time in 1598, with
Shakespeare taking a part.  The evidence of this is contained in
the list of actors prefixed to the comedy in the folio of Jonson's
works, 1616.  But it is a mistake to infer, because Shakespeare's
name stands first in the list of actors and the elder Kno'well
first in the dramatis personae, that Shakespeare took that
particular part.  The order of a list of Elizabethan players was
generally that of their importance or priority as shareholders in
the company and seldom if ever corresponded to the list of

"Every Man in His Humour" was an immediate success, and with it
Jonson's reputation as one of the leading dramatists of his time
was established once and for all.  This could have been by no means
Jonson's earliest comedy, and we have just learned that he was
already reputed one of "our best in tragedy."  Indeed, one of
Jonson's extant comedies, "The Case is Altered," but one never
claimed by him or published as his, must certainly have preceded
"Every Man in His Humour" on the stage.  The former play may be
described as a comedy modelled on the Latin plays of Plautus.  (It
combines, in fact, situations derived from the "Captivi" and the
"Aulularia" of that dramatist).  But the pretty story of the
beggar-maiden, Rachel, and her suitors, Jonson found, not among the
classics, but in the ideals of romantic love which Shakespeare had
already popularised on the stage.  Jonson never again produced so
fresh and lovable a feminine personage as Rachel, although in other
respects "The Case is Altered" is not a conspicuous play, and, save
for the satirising of Antony Munday in the person of Antonio
Balladino and Gabriel Harvey as well, is perhaps the least
characteristic of the comedies of Jonson.

"Every Man in His Humour," probably first acted late in the summer
of 1598 and at the Curtain, is commonly regarded as an epoch-making
play; and this view is not unjustified.  As to plot, it tells
little more than how an intercepted letter enabled a father to
follow his supposedly studious son to London, and there observe his
life with the gallants of the time.  The real quality of this
comedy is in its personages and in the theory upon which they are
conceived.  Ben Jonson had theories about poetry and the drama, and
he was neither chary in talking of them nor in experimenting with
them in his plays.  This makes Jonson, like Dryden in his time, and
Wordsworth much later, an author to reckon with; particularly when
we remember that many of Jonson's notions came for a time
definitely to prevail and to modify the whole trend of English
poetry.  First of all Jonson was a classicist, that is, he believed
in restraint and precedent in art in opposition to the prevalent
ungoverned and irresponsible Renaissance spirit.  Jonson believed
that there was a professional way of doing things which might be
reached by a study of the best examples, and he found these
examples for the most part among the ancients.  To confine our
attention to the drama, Jonson objected to the amateurishness and
haphazard nature of many contemporary plays, and set himself to do
something different; and the first and most striking thing that he
evolved was his conception and practice of the comedy of humours.

As Jonson has been much misrepresented in this matter, let us quote
his own words as to "humour."  A humour, according to Jonson, was a
bias of disposition, a warp, so to speak, in character by which

"Some one peculiar quality
Doth so possess a man, that it doth draw
All his affects, his spirits, and his powers,
In their confluctions, all to run one way."

But continuing, Jonson is careful to add:

"But that a rook by wearing a pied feather,
The cable hat-band, or the three-piled ruff,
A yard of shoe-tie, or the Switzers knot
On his French garters, should affect a humour!
O, it is more than most ridiculous."

Jonson's comedy of humours, in a word, conceived of stage
personages on the basis of a ruling trait or passion (a notable
simplification of actual life be it observed in passing); and,
placing these typified traits in juxtaposition in their conflict
and contrast, struck the spark of comedy. Downright, as his name
indicates, is "a plain squire"; Bobadill's humour is that of the
braggart who is incidentally, and with delightfully comic effect, a
coward; Brainworm's humour is the finding out of things to the end
of fooling everybody: of course he is fooled in the end himself.
But it was not Jonson's theories alone that made the success of
"Every Man in His Humour."  The play is admirably written and each
character is vividly conceived, and with a firm touch based on
observation of the men of the London of the day.  Jonson was
neither in this, his first great comedy (nor in any other play that
he wrote), a supine classicist, urging that English drama return to
a slavish adherence to classical conditions.  He says as to the
laws of the old comedy (meaning by "laws," such matters as the
unities of time and place and the use of chorus): "I see not then,
but we should enjoy the same licence, or free power to illustrate
and heighten our invention as they [the ancients] did; and not be
tied to those strict and regular forms which the niceness of a few,
who are nothing but form, would thrust upon us."  "Every Man in His
Humour" is written in prose, a novel practice which Jonson had of
his predecessor in comedy, John Lyly.  Even the word "humour" seems
to have been employed in the Jonsonian sense by Chapman before
Jonson's use of it.  Indeed, the comedy of humours itself is only a
heightened variety of the comedy of manners which represents life,
viewed at a satirical angle, and is the oldest and most persistent
species of comedy in the language.  None the less, Jonson's comedy
merited its immediate success and marked out a definite course in
which comedy long continued to run.  To mention only Shakespeare's
Falstaff and his rout, Bardolph, Pistol, Dame Quickly, and the
rest, whether in "Henry IV." or in "The Merry Wives of Windsor,"
all are conceived in the spirit of humours.  So are the captains,
Welsh, Scotch, and Irish of "Henry V.," and Malvolio especially
later; though Shakespeare never employed the method of humours for
an important personage.  It was not Jonson's fault that many of his
successors did precisely the thing that he had reprobated, that is,
degrade "the humour: into an oddity of speech, an eccentricity of
manner, of dress, or cut of beard.  There was an anonymous play
called "Every Woman in Her Humour."  Chapman wrote "A Humourous
Day's Mirth," Day, "Humour Out of Breath," Fletcher later, "The
Humourous Lieutenant," and Jonson, besides "Every Man Out of His
Humour," returned to the title in closing the cycle of his comedies
in "The Magnetic Lady or Humours Reconciled."

With the performance of "Every Man Out of His Humour" in 1599, by
Shakespeare's company once more at the Globe, we turn a new page in
Jonson's career.  Despite his many real virtues, if there is one
feature more than any other that distinguishes Jonson, it is his
arrogance; and to this may be added his self-righteousness,
especially under criticism or satire.  "Every Man Out of His
Humour" is the first of three "comical satires" which Jonson
contributed to what Dekker called the poetomachia or war of the
theatres as recent critics have named it.  This play as a fabric of
plot is a very slight affair; but as a satirical picture of the
manners of the time, proceeding by means of vivid caricature,
couched in witty and brilliant dialogue and sustained by that
righteous indignation which must lie at the heart of all true
satire -- as a realisation, in short, of the classical ideal of
comedy -- there had been nothing like Jonson's comedy since the
days of Aristophanes.  "Every Man in His Humour," like the two
plays that follow it, contains two kinds of attack, the critical or
generally satiric, levelled at abuses and corruptions in the
abstract; and the personal, in which specific application is made
of all this in the lampooning of poets and others, Jonson's
contemporaries.  The method of personal attack by actual caricature
of a person on the stage is almost as old as the drama.
Aristophanes so lampooned Euripides in "The Acharnians" and
Socrates in "The Clouds," to mention no other examples; and in
English drama this kind of thing is alluded to again and again.
What Jonson really did, was to raise the dramatic lampoon to an
art, and make out of a casual burlesque and bit of mimicry a
dramatic satire of literary pretensions and permanency.  With the
arrogant attitude mentioned above and his uncommon eloquence in
scorn, vituperation, and invective, it is no wonder that Jonson
soon involved himself in literary and even personal quarrels with
his fellow-authors.  The circumstances of the origin of this
'poetomachia' are far from clear, and those who have written on the
topic, except of late, have not helped to make them clearer.  The
origin of the "war" has been referred to satirical references,
apparently to Jonson, contained in "The Scourge of Villainy," a
satire in regular form after the manner of the ancients by John
Marston, a fellow playwright, subsequent friend and collaborator of
Jonson's.  On the other hand, epigrams of Jonson have been
discovered (49, 68, and 100) variously charging "playwright"
(reasonably identified with Marston) with scurrility, cowardice,
and plagiarism; though the dates of the epigrams cannot be
ascertained with certainty.  Jonson's own statement of the matter
to Drummond runs: "He had many quarrels with Marston, beat him,
and took his pistol from him, wrote his "Poetaster" on him; the
beginning[s] of them were that Marston represented him on the

[footnote] *The best account of this whole subject is to be found
in the edition of "Poetaster" and "Satiromastrix" by J. H. Penniman
in "Belles Lettres Series" shortly to appear.  See also his earlier
work, "The War of the Theatres," 1892, and the excellent
contributions to the subject by H. C. Hart in "Notes and Queries,"
and in his edition of Jonson, 1906.

Here at least we are on certain ground; and the principals of the
quarrel are known.  "Histriomastix," a play revised by Marston in
1598, has been regarded as the one in which Jonson was thus
"represented on the stage"; although the personage in question,
Chrisogonus, a poet, satirist, and translator, poor but proud, and
contemptuous of the common herd, seems rather a complimentary
portrait of Jonson than a caricature.  As to the personages
actually ridiculed in "Every Man Out of His Humour," Carlo Buffone
was formerly thought certainly to be Marston, as he was described
as "a public, scurrilous, and profane jester," and elsewhere as the
grand scourge or second untruss [that is, satirist], of the time"
(Joseph Hall being by his own boast the first, and Marston's work
being entitled "The Scourge of Villainy").  Apparently we must now
prefer for Carlo a notorious character named Charles Chester, of
whom gossipy and inaccurate Aubrey relates that he was "a bold
impertinent fellow...a perpetual talker and made a noise like a
drum in a room.  So one time at a tavern Sir Walter Raleigh beats
him and seals up his mouth (that is his upper and nether beard)
with hard wax.  From him Ben Jonson takes his Carlo Buffone
['i.e.', jester] in "Every Man in His Humour" ['sic']."  Is it
conceivable that after all Jonson was ridiculing Marston, and that
the point of the satire consisted in an intentional confusion of
"the grand scourge or second untruss" with "the scurrilous and
profane" Chester?

We have digressed into detail in this particular case to exemplify
the difficulties of criticism in its attempts to identify the
allusions in these forgotten quarrels.  We are on sounder ground of
fact in recording other manifestations of Jonson's enmity.  In "The
Case is Altered" there is clear ridicule in the character Antonio
Balladino of Anthony Munday, pageant-poet of the city, translator
of romances and playwright as well.  In "Every Man in His Humour"
there is certainly a caricature of Samuel Daniel, accepted poet of
the court, sonneteer, and companion of men of fashion.  These men
held recognised positions to which Jonson felt his talents better
entitled him; they were hence to him his natural enemies.  It seems
almost certain that he pursued both in the personages of his satire
through "Every Man Out of His Humour," and "Cynthia's Revels,"
Daniel under the characters Fastidious Brisk and Hedon, Munday as
Puntarvolo and Amorphus; but in these last we venture on quagmire
once more.  Jonson's literary rivalry of Daniel is traceable again
and again, in the entertainments that welcomed King James on his
way to London, in the masques at court, and in the pastoral drama.
As to Jonson's personal ambitions with respect to these two men, it
is notable that he became, not pageant-poet, but chronologer to the
City of London; and that, on the accession of the new king, he came
soon to triumph over Daniel as the accepted entertainer of royalty.

"Cynthia's Revels," the second "comical satire," was acted in 1600,
and, as a play, is even more lengthy, elaborate, and impossible
than "Every Man Out of His Humour."  Here personal satire seems to
have absorbed everything, and while much of the caricature is
admirable, especially in the detail of witty and trenchantly
satirical dialogue, the central idea of a fountain of self-love is
not very well carried out, and the persons revert at times to
abstractions, the action to allegory.  It adds to our wonder that
this difficult drama should have been acted by the Children of
Queen Elizabeth's Chapel, among them Nathaniel Field with whom
Jonson read Horace and Martial, and whom he taught later how to
make plays.  Another of these precocious little actors was
Salathiel Pavy, who died before he was thirteen, already famed for
taking the parts of old men.  Him Jonson immortalised in one of the
sweetest of his epitaphs.  An interesting sidelight is this on the
character of this redoubtable and rugged satirist, that he should
thus have befriended and tenderly remembered these little
theatrical waifs, some of whom (as we know) had been literally
kidnapped to be pressed into the service of the theatre and whipped
to the conning of their difficult parts.  To the caricature of
Daniel and Munday in "Cynthia's Revels" must be added Anaides
(impudence), here assuredly Marston, and Asotus (the prodigal),
interpreted as Lodge or, more perilously, Raleigh.  Crites, like
Asper-Macilente in "Every Man Out of His Humour," is Jonson's
self-complaisant portrait of himself, the just, wholly admirable,
and judicious scholar, holding his head high above the pack of the
yelping curs of envy and detraction, but careless of their puny
attacks on his perfections with only too mindful a neglect.

The third and last of the "comical satires" is "Poetaster," acted,
once more, by the Children of the Chapel in 1601, and Jonson's only
avowed contribution to the fray.  According to the author's own
account, this play was written in fifteen weeks on a report that
his enemies had entrusted to Dekker the preparation of
"Satiromastix, the Untrussing of the Humorous Poet," a dramatic
attack upon himself.  In this attempt to forestall his enemies
Jonson succeeded, and "Poetaster" was an immediate and deserved
success.  While hardly more closely knit in structure than its
earlier companion pieces, "Poetaster" is planned to lead up to the
ludicrous final scene in which, after a device borrowed from the
"Lexiphanes" of Lucian, the offending poetaster, Marston-Crispinus,
is made to throw up the difficult words with which he had
overburdened his stomach as well as overlarded his vocabulary.  In
the end Crispinus with his fellow, Dekker-Demetrius, is bound over
to keep the peace and never thenceforward "malign, traduce, or
detract the person or writings of Quintus Horatius Flaccus [Jonson]
or any other eminent man transcending you in merit."  One of the
most diverting personages in Jonson's comedy is Captain Tucca.
"His peculiarity" has been well described by Ward as "a buoyant
blackguardism which recovers itself instantaneously from the most
complete exposure, and a picturesqueness of speech like that of a
walking dictionary of slang."

It was this character, Captain Tucca, that Dekker hit upon in his
reply, "Satiromastix," and he amplified him, turning his abusive
vocabulary back upon Jonson and adding "an immodesty to his
dialogue that did not enter into Jonson's conception."  It has been
held, altogether plausibly, that when Dekker was engaged
professionally, so to speak, to write a dramatic reply to Jonson,
he was at work on a species of chronicle history, dealing with the
story of Walter Terill in the reign of William Rufus.  This he
hurriedly adapted to include the satirical characters suggested by
"Poetaster," and fashioned to convey the satire of his reply.  The
absurdity of placing Horace in the court of a Norman king is the
result. But Dekker's play is not without its palpable hits at the
arrogance, the literary pride, and self-righteousness of
Jonson-Horace, whose "ningle" or pal, the absurd Asinius Bubo, has
recently been shown to figure forth, in all likelihood, Jonson's
friend, the poet Drayton.  Slight and hastily adapted as is
"Satiromastix," especially in a comparison with the better wrought
and more significant satire of "Poetaster," the town awarded the
palm to Dekker, not to Jonson; and Jonson gave over in consequence
his practice of "comical satire."  Though Jonson was cited to
appear before the Lord Chief Justice to answer certain charges to
the effect that he had attacked lawyers and soldiers in
"Poetaster," nothing came of this complaint.  It may be suspected
that much of this furious clatter and give-and-take was pure
playing to the gallery.  The town was agog with the strife, and on
no less an authority than Shakespeare ("Hamlet," ii. 2), we learn
that the children's company (acting the plays of Jonson) did "so
berattle the common stages...that many, wearing rapiers, are afraid
of goose-quills, and dare scarce come thither."

Several other plays have been thought to bear a greater or less
part in the war of the theatres.  Among them the most important is
a college play, entitled "The Return from Parnassus," dating
1601-02.  In it a much-quoted passage makes Burbage, as a
character, declare: "Why here's our fellow Shakespeare puts them
all down; aye and Ben Jonson, too.  O that Ben Jonson is a
pestilent fellow; he brought up Horace, giving the poets a pill,
but our fellow Shakespeare hath given him a purge that made him
bewray his credit."  Was Shakespeare then concerned in this war of
the stages?  And what could have been the nature of this "purge"?
Among several suggestions, "Troilus and Cressida" has been thought
by some to be the play in which Shakespeare thus "put down" his
friend, Jonson.  A wiser interpretation finds the "purge" in
"Satiromastix," which, though not written by Shakespeare, was
staged by his company, and therefore with his approval and under
his direction as one of the leaders of that company.

The last years of the reign of Elizabeth thus saw Jonson recognised
as a dramatist second only to Shakespeare, and not second even to
him as a dramatic satirist.  But Jonson now turned his talents to
new fields.  Plays on subjects derived from classical story and
myth had held the stage from the beginning of the drama, so that
Shakespeare was making no new departure when he wrote his "Julius
Caesar" about 1600.  Therefore when Jonson staged "Sejanus," three
years later and with Shakespeare's company once more, he was only
following in the elder dramatist's footsteps.  But Jonson's idea of
a play on classical history, on the one hand, and Shakespeare's and
the elder popular dramatists, on the other, were very different.
Heywood some years before had put five straggling plays on the
stage in quick succession, all derived from stories in Ovid and
dramatised with little taste or discrimination.  Shakespeare had a
finer conception of form, but even he was contented to take all his
ancient history from North's translation of Plutarch and dramatise
his subject without further inquiry. Jonson was a scholar and a
classical antiquarian.  He reprobated this slipshod amateurishness,
and wrote his "Sejanus" like a scholar, reading Tacitus, Suetonius,
and other authorities, to be certain of his facts, his setting, and
his atmosphere, and somewhat pedantically noting his authorities in
the margin when he came to print.  "Sejanus" is a tragedy of
genuine dramatic power in which is told with discriminating taste
the story of the haughty favourite of Tiberius with his tragical
overthrow.  Our drama presents no truer nor more painstaking
representation of ancient Roman life than may be found in Jonson's
"Sejanus" and "Catiline his Conspiracy," which followed in 1611.  A
passage in the address of the former play to the reader, in which
Jonson refers to a collaboration in an earlier version, has led to
the surmise that Shakespeare may have been that "worthier pen."
There is no evidence to determine the matter.

In 1605, we find Jonson in active collaboration with Chapman and
Marston in the admirable comedy of London life entitled "Eastward
Hoe."  In the previous year, Marston had dedicated his
"Malcontent," in terms of fervid admiration, to Jonson; so that the
wounds of the war of the theatres must have been long since healed.
Between Jonson and Chapman there was the kinship of similar
scholarly ideals.  The two continued friends throughout life.
"Eastward Hoe" achieved the extraordinary popularity represented in
a demand for three issues in one year.  But this was not due
entirely to the merits of the play.  In its earliest version a
passage which an irritable courtier conceived to be derogatory to
his nation, the Scots, sent both Chapman and Jonson to jail; but
the matter was soon patched up, for by this time Jonson had
influence at court.

With the accession of King James, Jonson began his long and
successful career as a writer of masques.  He wrote more masques
than all his competitors together, and they are of an extraordinary
variety and poetic excellence.  Jonson did not invent the masque;
for such premeditated devices to set and frame, so to speak, a
court ball had been known and practised in varying degrees of
elaboration long before his time.  But Jonson gave dramatic value
to the masque, especially in his invention of the antimasque, a
comedy or farcical element of relief, entrusted to professional
players or dancers.  He enhanced, as well, the beauty and dignity
of those portions of the masque in which noble lords and ladies
took their parts to create, by their gorgeous costumes and artistic
grouping and evolutions, a sumptuous show.  On the mechanical and
scenic side Jonson had an inventive and ingenious partner in Inigo
Jones, the royal architect, who more than any one man raised the
standard of stage representation in the England of his day.  Jonson
continued active in the service of the court in the writing of
masques and other entertainments far into the reign of King
Charles; but, towards the end, a quarrel with Jones embittered his
life, and the two testy old men appear to have become not only a
constant irritation to each other, but intolerable bores at court.
In "Hymenaei," "The Masque of Queens," "Love Freed from Ignorance,"
"Lovers made Men," "Pleasure Reconciled to Virtue," and many more
will be found Jonson's aptitude, his taste, his poetry and
inventiveness in these by-forms of the drama; while in "The Masque
of Christmas," and "The Gipsies Metamorphosed" especially, is
discoverable that power of broad comedy which, at court as well as
in the city, was not the least element of Jonson's contemporary

But Jonson had by no means given up the popular stage when he
turned to the amusement of King James.  In 1605 "Volpone" was
produced, "The Silent Woman" in 1609, "The Alchemist" in the
following year.  These comedies, with "Bartholomew Fair," 1614,
represent Jonson at his height, and for constructive cleverness,
character successfully conceived in the manner of caricature, wit
and brilliancy of dialogue, they stand alone in English drama.
"Volpone, or the Fox," is, in a sense, a transition play from the
dramatic satires of the war of the theatres to the purer comedy
represented in the plays named above.  Its subject is a struggle of
wit applied to chicanery; for among its dramatis personae, from
the villainous Fox himself, his rascally servant Mosca, Voltore
(the vulture), Corbaccio and Corvino (the big and the little
raven), to Sir Politic Would-be and the rest, there is scarcely a
virtuous character in the play.  Question has been raised as to
whether a story so forbidding can be considered a comedy, for,
although the plot ends in the discomfiture and imprisonment of the
most vicious, it involves no mortal catastrophe.  But Jonson was on
sound historical ground, for "Volpone" is conceived far more
logically on the lines of the ancients' theory of comedy than was
ever the romantic drama of Shakespeare, however repulsive we may
find a philosophy of life that facilely divides the world into the
rogues and their dupes, and, identifying brains with roguery and
innocence with folly, admires the former while inconsistently
punishing them.

"The Silent Woman" is a gigantic farce of the most ingenious
construction.  The whole comedy hinges on a huge joke, played by a
heartless nephew on his misanthropic uncle, who is induced to take
to himself a wife, young, fair, and warranted silent, but who, in
the end, turns out neither silent nor a woman at all.  In "The
Alchemist," again, we have the utmost cleverness in construction,
the whole fabric building climax on climax, witty, ingenious, and
so plausibly presented that we forget its departures from the
possibilities of life.  In "The Alchemist" Jonson represented, none
the less to the life, certain sharpers of the metropolis, revelling
in their shrewdness and rascality and in the variety of the
stupidity and wickedness of their victims.  We may object to the
fact that the only person in the play possessed of a scruple of
honesty is discomfited, and that the greatest scoundrel of all is
approved in the end and rewarded.  The comedy is so admirably
written and contrived, the personages stand out with such lifelike
distinctness in their several kinds, and the whole is animated with
such verve and resourcefulness that "The Alchemist" is a new marvel
every time it is read.  Lastly of this group comes the tremendous
comedy, "Bartholomew Fair," less clear cut, less definite, and less
structurally worthy of praise than its three predecessors, but full
of the keenest and cleverest of satire and inventive to a degree
beyond any English comedy save some other of Jonson's own.  It is
in "Bartholomew Fair" that we are presented to the immortal
caricature of the Puritan, Zeal-in-the-Land Busy, and the
Littlewits that group about him, and it is in this extraordinary
comedy that the humour of Jonson, always open to this danger,
loosens into the Rabelaisian mode that so delighted King James in
"The Gipsies Metamorphosed."  Another comedy of less merit is "The
Devil is an Ass," acted in 1616.  It was the failure of this play
that caused Jonson to give over writing for the public stage for a
period of nearly ten years.

"Volpone" was laid as to scene in Venice.  Whether because of the
success of "Eastward Hoe" or for other reasons, the other three
comedies declare in the words of the prologue to "The Alchemist":

"Our scene is London, 'cause we would make known
No country's mirth is better than our own."

Indeed Jonson went further when he came to revise his plays for
collected publication in his folio of 1616, he transferred the
scene of "Every Man in His Humour" from Florence to London also,
converting Signior Lorenzo di Pazzi to Old Kno'well, Prospero to
Master Welborn, and Hesperida to Dame Kitely "dwelling i' the Old

In his comedies of London life, despite his trend towards 
caricature, Jonson has shown himself a genuine realist, drawing
from the life about him with an experience and insight rare in any
generation.  A happy comparison has been suggested between Ben
Jonson and Charles Dickens.  Both were men of the people, lowly
born and hardly bred.  Each knew the London of his time as few men
knew it; and each represented it intimately and in elaborate
detail.  Both men were at heart moralists, seeking the truth by the
exaggerated methods of humour and caricature; perverse, even
wrong-headed at times, but possessed of a true pathos and largeness
of heart, and when all has been said -- though the Elizabethan ran
to satire, the Victorian to sentimentality -- leaving the world
better for the art that they practised in it.

In 1616, the year of the death of Shakespeare, Jonson collected his
plays, his poetry, and his masques for publication in a collective
edition.  This was an unusual thing at the time and had been
attempted by no dramatist before Jonson.  This volume published, in
a carefully revised text, all the plays thus far mentioned,
excepting "The Case is Altered," which Jonson did not acknowledge,
"Bartholomew Fair," and "The Devil is an Ass," which was written
too late.  It included likewise a book of some hundred and thirty
odd "Epigrams," in which form of brief and pungent writing Jonson
was an acknowledged master; "The Forest," a smaller collection of
lyric and occasional verse and some ten "Masques" and
"Entertainments."  In this same year Jonson was made poet laureate
with a pension of one hundred marks a year.  This, with his fees
and returns from several noblemen, and the small earnings of his
plays must have formed the bulk of his income.  The poet appears to
have done certain literary hack-work for others, as, for example,
parts of the Punic Wars contributed to Raleigh's "History of the
World."  We know from a story, little to the credit of either, that
Jonson accompanied Raleigh's son abroad in the capacity of a tutor.
In 1618 Jonson was granted the reversion of the office of Master of
the Revels, a post for which he was peculiarly fitted; but he did
not live to enjoy its perquisites.  Jonson was honoured with
degrees by both universities, though when and under what
circumstances is not known.  It has been said that he narrowly
escaped the honour of knighthood, which the satirists of the day
averred King James was wont to lavish with an indiscriminate hand.
Worse men were made knights in his day than worthy Ben Jonson.

From 1616 to the close of the reign of King James, Jonson produced
nothing for the stage.  But he "prosecuted" what he calls "his
wonted studies" with such assiduity that he became in reality, as
by report, one of the most learned men of his time.  Jonson's
theory of authorship involved a wide acquaintance with books and
"an ability," as he put it, "to convert the substance or riches of
another poet to his own use."  Accordingly Jonson read not only the
Greek and Latin classics down to the lesser writers, but he
acquainted himself especially with the Latin writings of his
learned contemporaries, their prose as well as their poetry, their
antiquities and curious lore as well as their more solid learning.
Though a poor man, Jonson was an indefatigable collector of books.
He told Drummond that "the Earl of Pembroke sent him 20 pounds every
first day of the new year to buy new books."  Unhappily, in 1623,
his library was destroyed by fire, an accident serio-comically
described in his witty poem, "An Execration upon Vulcan."  Yet even
now a book turns up from time to time in which is inscribed, in
fair large Italian lettering, the name, Ben Jonson.  With respect
to Jonson's use of his material, Dryden said memorably of him:
"[He] was not only a professed imitator of Horace, but a learned
plagiary of all the others; you track him everywhere in their
snow....But he has done his robberies so openly that one sees he
fears not to be taxed by any law.  He invades authors like a
monarch, and what would be theft in other poets is only victory in
him."  And yet it is but fair to say that Jonson prided himself,
and justly, on his originality.  In "Catiline," he not only uses
Sallust's account of the conspiracy, but he models some of the
speeches of Cicero on the Roman orator's actual words.  In
"Poetaster," he lifts a whole satire out of Horace and dramatises
it effectively for his purposes.  The sophist Libanius suggests the
situation of "The Silent Woman"; a Latin comedy of Giordano Bruno,
"Il Candelaio," the relation of the dupes and the sharpers in "The
Alchemist," the "Mostellaria" of Plautus, its admirable opening
scene.  But Jonson commonly bettered his sources, and putting the
stamp of his sovereignty on whatever bullion he borrowed made it
thenceforward to all time current and his own.

The lyric and especially the occasional poetry of Jonson has a
peculiar merit.  His theory demanded design and the perfection of
literary finish. He was furthest from the rhapsodist and the
careless singer of an idle day; and he believed that Apollo could
only be worthily served in singing robes and laurel crowned.  And
yet many of Jonson's lyrics will live as long as the language.  Who
does not know "Queen and huntress, chaste and fair."  "Drink to me
only with thine eyes," or "Still to be neat, still to be dressed"?
Beautiful in form, deft and graceful in expression, with not a word
too much or one that bears not its part in the total effect, there
is yet about the lyrics of Jonson a certain stiffness and
formality, a suspicion that they were not quite spontaneous and
unbidden, but that they were carved, so to speak, with
disproportionate labour by a potent man of letters whose habitual
thought is on greater things.  It is for these reasons that Jonson
is even better in the epigram and in occasional verse where
rhetorical finish and pointed wit less interfere with the
spontaneity and emotion which we usually associate with lyrical
poetry.  There are no such epitaphs as Ben Jonson's, witness the
charming ones on his own children, on Salathiel Pavy, the
child-actor, and many more; and this even though the rigid law of
mine and thine must now restore to William Browne of Tavistock the
famous lines beginning: "Underneath this sable hearse."  Jonson is
unsurpassed, too, in the difficult poetry of compliment, seldom
falling into fulsome praise and disproportionate similitude, yet
showing again and again a generous appreciation of worth in others,
a discriminating taste and a generous personal regard.  There was
no man in England of his rank so well known and universally beloved
as Ben Jonson.  The list of his friends, of those to whom he had
written verses, and those who had written verses to him, includes
the name of every man of prominence in the England of King James.
And the tone of many of these productions discloses an affectionate
familiarity that speaks for the amiable personality and sound worth
of the laureate.  In 1619, growing unwieldy through inactivity,
Jonson hit upon the heroic remedy of a journey afoot to Scotland.
On his way thither and back he was hospitably received at the
houses of many friends and by those to whom his friends had
recommended him.  When he arrived in Edinburgh, the burgesses met
to grant him the freedom of the city, and Drummond, foremost of
Scottish poets, was proud to entertain him for weeks as his guest
at Hawthornden.  Some of the noblest of Jonson's poems were
inspired by friendship.  Such is the fine "Ode to the memory of Sir
Lucius Cary and Sir Henry Moryson," and that admirable piece of
critical insight and filial affection, prefixed to the first
Shakespeare folio, "To the memory of my beloved master, William
Shakespeare, and what he hath left us," to mention only these.  Nor
can the earlier "Epode," beginning "Not to know vice at all," be
matched in stately gravity and gnomic wisdom in its own wise and
stately age.

But if Jonson had deserted the stage after the publication of his
folio and up to the end of the reign of King James, he was far from
inactive; for year after year his inexhaustible inventiveness
continued to contribute to the masquing and entertainment at court.
In "The Golden Age Restored," Pallas turns the Iron Age with
its attendant evils into statues which sink out of sight; in
"Pleasure Reconciled to Virtue," Atlas figures represented as an
old man, his shoulders covered with snow, and Comus, "the god of
cheer or the belly," is one of the characters, a circumstance which
an imaginative boy of ten, named John Milton, was not to forget.
"Pan's Anniversary," late in the reign of James, proclaimed that
Jonson had not yet forgotten how to write exquisite lyrics, and
"The Gipsies Metamorphosed" displayed the old drollery and broad
humorous stroke still unimpaired and unmatchable.  These, too, and
the earlier years of Charles were the days of the Apollo Room of
the Devil Tavern where Jonson presided, the absolute monarch of
English literary Bohemia.  We hear of a room blazoned about with
Jonson's own judicious "Leges Convivales" in letters of gold, of a
company made up of the choicest spirits of the time, devotedly
attached to their veteran dictator, his reminiscences, opinions,
affections, and enmities.  And we hear, too, of valorous potations;
but in the words of Herrick addressed to his master, Jonson, at the
Devil Tavern, as at the Dog, the Triple Tun, and at the Mermaid,

"We such clusters had
As made us nobly wild, not mad,
And yet each verse of thine
Outdid the meat, outdid the frolic wine."

But the patronage of the court failed in the days of King Charles,
though Jonson was not without royal favours; and the old poet
returned to the stage, producing, between 1625 and 1633, "The
Staple of News," "The New Inn," "The Magnetic Lady," and "The Tale
of a Tub," the last doubtless revised from a much earlier comedy.
None of these plays met with any marked success, although the
scathing generalisation of Dryden that designated them "Jonson's
dotages" is unfair to their genuine merits.  Thus the idea of an
office for the gathering, proper dressing, and promulgation of news
(wild flight of the fancy in its time) was an excellent subject for
satire on the existing absurdities among newsmongers; although
as much can hardly be said for "The Magnetic Lady," who, in her
bounty, draws to her personages of differing humours to reconcile
them in the end according to the alternative title, or "Humours
Reconciled."  These last plays of the old dramatist revert to
caricature and the hard lines of allegory; the moralist is more
than ever present, the satire degenerates into personal lampoon,
especially of his sometime friend, Inigo Jones, who appears
unworthily to have used his influence at court against the
broken-down old poet.  And now disease claimed Jonson, and he was
bedridden for months.  He had succeeded Middleton in 1628 as
Chronologer to the City of London, but lost the post for not
fulfilling its duties.  King Charles befriended him, and even
commissioned him to write still for the entertainment of the court;
and he was not without the sustaining hand of noble patrons and
devoted friends among the younger poets who were proud to be
"sealed of the tribe of Ben."

Jonson died, August 6, 1637, and a second folio of his works, which
he had been some time gathering, was printed in 1640, bearing in
its various parts dates ranging from 1630 to 1642.  It included all
the plays mentioned in the foregoing paragraphs, excepting "The
Case is Altered;" the masques, some fifteen, that date between 1617
and 1630; another collection of lyrics and occasional poetry called
"Underwoods, including some further entertainments; a translation
of "Horace's Art of Poetry" (also published in a vicesimo quarto in
1640), and certain fragments and ingatherings which the poet would
hardly have included himself.  These last comprise the fragment
(less than seventy lines) of a tragedy called "Mortimer his Fall,"
and three acts of a pastoral drama of much beauty and poetic
spirit, "The Sad Shepherd."  There is also the exceedingly
interesting "English Grammar" "made by Ben Jonson for the benefit
of all strangers out of his observation of the English language now
spoken and in use," in Latin and English; and "Timber, or
Discoveries" "made upon men and matter as they have flowed out of
his daily reading, or had their reflux to his peculiar notion of
the times."  The "Discoveries," as it is usually called, is a
commonplace book such as many literary men have kept, in which
their reading was chronicled, passages that took their fancy
translated or transcribed, and their passing opinions noted.  Many
passages of Jonson's "Discoveries" are literal translations from the
authors he chanced to be reading, with the reference, noted or not,
as the accident of the moment prescribed.  At times he follows the
line of Macchiavelli's argument as to the nature and conduct of
princes; at others he clarifies his own conception of poetry and
poets by recourse to Aristotle.  He finds a choice paragraph on
eloquence in Seneca the elder and applies it to his own
recollection of Bacon's power as an orator; and another on facile
and ready genius, and translates it, adapting it to his
recollection of his fellow-playwright, Shakespeare.  To call such
passages -- which Jonson never intended for publication --
plagiarism, is to obscure the significance of words.  To disparage
his memory by citing them is a preposterous use of scholarship.
Jonson's prose, both in his dramas, in the descriptive comments of
his masques, and in the "Discoveries," is characterised by clarity
and vigorous directness, nor is it wanting in a fine sense of form
or in the subtler graces of diction.

When Jonson died there was a project for a handsome monument to his
memory. But the Civil War was at hand, and the project failed.  A
memorial, not insufficient, was carved on the stone covering his
grave in one of the aisles of Westminster Abbey:

"O rare Ben Jonson."



The following is a complete list of his published works: --

Every Man in his Humour, 4to, 1601;
The Case is Altered, 4to, 1609;
Every Man out of his Humour, 4to, 1600;
Cynthia's Revels, 4to, 1601;
Poetaster, 4to, 1602;
Sejanus, 4to, 1605;
Eastward Ho (with Chapman and Marston), 4to, 1605;
Volpone, 4to, 1607;
Epicoene, or the Silent Woman, 4to, 1609 (?), fol., 1616;
The Alchemist, 4to, 1612;
Catiline, his Conspiracy, 4to, 1611;
Bartholomew Fayre, 4to, 1614 (?), fol., 1631;
The Divell is an Asse, fol., 1631;
The Staple of Newes, fol., 1631;
The New Sun, 8vo, 1631, fol., 1692;
The Magnetic Lady, or Humours Reconcild, fol., 1640;
A Tale of a Tub, fol., 1640;
The Sad Shepherd, or a Tale of Robin Hood, fol., 1641;
Mortimer his Fall (fragment), fol., 1640.

To Jonson have also been attributed additions to Kyd's Jeronymo,
and collaboration in The Widow with Fletcher and Middleton, and
in the Bloody Brother with Fletcher.

Epigrams, The Forrest, Underwoods, published in fols., 1616, 1640;
Selections: Execration against Vulcan, and Epigrams, 1640;
G. Hor. Flaccus his art of Poetry, Englished by Ben Jonson, 1640;
Leges Convivialis, fol., 1692.
Other minor poems first appeared in Gifford's edition of Works.

Timber, or Discoveries made upon Men and Matter, fol., 1641;
The English Grammar, made by Ben Jonson for the benefit of
Strangers, fol., 1640.

Masques and Entertainments were published in the early folios.

Fol., 1616, volume. 2, 1640 (1631-41);
fol., 1692, 1716-19, 1729;
edited by P. Whalley, 7 volumes., 1756;
by Gifford (with Memoir), 9 volumes., 1816, 1846;
re-edited by F. Cunningham, 3 volumes., 1871;
in 9 volumes., 1875;
by Barry Cornwall (with Memoir), 1838;
by B. Nicholson (Mermaid Series), with Introduction by
C. H. Herford, 1893, etc.;
Nine Plays, 1904;
ed. H. C. Hart (Standard Library), 1906, etc;
Plays and Poems, with Introduction by H. Morley (Universal
Library), 1885;
Plays (7) and Poems (Newnes), 1905;
Poems, with Memoir by H. Bennett (Carlton Classics), 1907;
Masques and Entertainments, ed. by H. Morley, 1890.

J. A. Symonds, with Biographical and Critical Essay,
(Canterbury Poets), 1886;
Grosart, Brave Translunary Things, 1895;
Arber, Jonson Anthology, 1901;
Underwoods, Cambridge University Press, 1905;
Lyrics (Jonson, Beaumont and Fletcher), the Chap Books,
No. 4, 1906;
Songs (from Plays, Masques, etc.), with earliest known
setting, Eragny Press, 1906.

See Memoirs affixed to Works;
J. A. Symonds (English Worthies), 1886;
Notes of Ben Jonson Conversations with Drummond of Hawthornden;
Shakespeare Society, 1842;
ed. with Introduction and Notes by P. Sidney, 1906;
Swinburne, A Study of Ben Jonson, 1889.











My hope is not so nourished by example, as it will conclude,
this dumb piece should please you, because it hath pleased
others before; but by trust, that when you have read it,
you will find it worthy to have displeased none. This makes
that I now number you, not only in the names of favour, but
the names of justice to what I write; and do presently call
you to the exercise of that noblest, and manliest virtue;
as coveting rather to be freed in my fame, by the authority
of a judge, than the credit of an undertaker. Read,
therefore, I pray you, and censure. There is not a line, or
syllable in it, changed from the simplicity of the first
copy. And, when you shall consider, through the certain
hatred of some, how much a man's innocency may be endangered
by an uncertain accusation; you will, I doubt not, so begin
to hate the iniquity of such natures, as I shall love the
contumely done me, whose end was so honourable as to be
wiped off by your sentence.

Your unprofitable, but true Lover,



MOROSE, a Gentleman that loves no noise.

SIR DAUPHINE EUGENIE, a Knight, his Nephew.

NED CLERIMONT, a Gentleman, his Friend.

TRUEWIT, another Friend.

SIR JOHN DAW, a Knight.

SIR AMOROUS LA-FOOLE, a Knight also.

THOMAS OTTER, a Land and Sea Captain.

CUTBEARD, a Barber.

MUTE, one of MOROSE's Servants.



EPICOENE, supposed the Silent Woman.

Ladies Collegiates.

LADY HAUGHTY'S Woman, Pretenders.

Pages, Servants, etc.



Truth says, of old the art of making plays
Was to content the people; and their praise
Was to the poet money, wine, and bays.

But in this age, a sect of writers are,
That, only, for particular likings care,
And will taste nothing that is popular.

With such we mingle neither brains nor breasts;
Our wishes, like to those make public feasts,
Are not to please the cook's taste, but the guests'.

Yet, if those cunning palates hither come,
They shall find guests' entreaty, and good room;
And though all relish not, sure there will be some,

That, when they leave their seats, shall make them say,
Who wrote that piece, could so have wrote a play,
But that he knew this was the better way.

For, to present all custard, or all tart,
And have no other meats, to bear a part.
Or to want bread, and salt, were but course art.

The poet prays you then, with better thought
To sit; and, when his cates are all in brought,
Though there be none far-fet, there will dear-bought,

Be fit for ladies: some for lords, knights, 'squires;
Some for your waiting-wench, and city-wires;
Some for your men, and daughters of Whitefriars.

Nor is it, only, while you keep your seat
Here, that his feast will last; but you shall eat
A week at ord'naries, on his broken meat:
  If his muse be true,
  Who commends her to you.


The ends of all, who for the scene do write,
Are, or should be, to profit and delight.
And still't hath been the praise of all best times,
So persons were not touch'd, to tax the crimes.
Then, in this play, which we present to-night,
And make the object of your ear and sight,
On forfeit of yourselves, think nothing true:
Lest so you make the maker to judge you,
For he knows, poet never credit gain'd
By writing truths, but things (like truths) well feign'd.
If any yet will, with particular sleight
Of application, wrest what he doth write;
And that he meant, or him, or her, will say:
They make a libel, which he made a play.

ACT 1. SCENE 1.1.



CLER: Have you got the song yet perfect, I gave you, boy?

PAGE: Yes, sir.

CLER: Let me hear it.

PAGE: You shall, sir, but i'faith let nobody else.

CLER: Why, I pray?

PAGE: It will get you the dangerous name of a poet in town, sir;
besides me a perfect deal of ill-will at the mansion you wot of,
whose lady is the argument of it; where now I am the welcomest
thing under a man that comes there.

CLER: I think, and above a man too, if the truth were rack'd out
of you.

PAGE: No, faith, I'll confess before, sir. The gentlewomen play with
me, and throw me on the bed; and carry me in to my lady; and she
kisses me with her oil'd face; and puts a peruke on my head; and
asks me an I will wear her gown? and I say, no: and then she
hits me a blow o' the ear, and calls me Innocent! and lets me go.

CLER: No marvel if the door be kept shut against your master, when
the entrance is so easy to you--well sir, you shall go there no
more, lest I be fain to seek your voice in my lady's rushes, a
fortnight hence. Sing, sir.

PAGE [SINGS]: Still to be neat, still to be drest--


TRUE: Why, here's the man that can melt away his time and never
feels it! What between his mistress abroad, and his ingle at
home, high fare, soft lodging, fine clothes, and his fiddle; he
thinks the hours have no wings, or the day no post-horse. Well,
sir gallant, were you struck with the plague this minute, or
condemn'd to any capital punishment to-morrow, you would begin
then to think, and value every article of your time, esteem it
at the true rate, and give all for it.

CLER: Why what should a man do?

TRUE: Why, nothing; or that which, when it is done, is as idle.
Harken after the next horse-race or hunting-match; lay wagers,
praise Puppy, or Pepper-corn, White-foot, Franklin; swear upon
Whitemane's party; speak aloud, that my lords may hear you;
visit my ladies at night, and be able to give them the character
of every bowler or better on the green. These be the things
wherein your fashionable men exercise themselves, and I for

CLER: Nay, if I have thy authority, I'll not leave yet. Come,
the other are considerations, when we come to have gray heads
and weak hams, moist eyes and shrunk members. We'll think on
'em then; and we'll pray and fast.

TRUE: Ay, and destine only that time of age to goodness, which our
want of ability will not let us employ in evil!

CLER: Why, then 'tis time enough.

TRUE: Yes; as if a man should sleep all the term, and think to
effect his business the last day. O, Clerimont, this time, because
it is an incorporeal thing, and not subject to sense, we mock
ourselves the fineliest out of it, with vanity and misery
indeed! not seeking an end of wretchedness, but only changing the
matter still.

CLER: Nay, thou wilt not leave now--

TRUE: See but our common disease! with what justice can we complain,
that great men will not look upon us, nor be at leisure to give
our affairs such dispatch as we expect, when we will never do it
to ourselves? nor hear, nor regard ourselves?

CLER: Foh! thou hast read Plutarch's morals, now, or some such
tedious fellow; and it shews so vilely with thee! 'fore God, 'twill
spoil thy wit utterly. Talk me of pins, and feathers, and
ladies, and rushes, and such things: and leave this Stoicity
alone, till thou mak'st sermons.

TRUE: Well, sir; if it will not take, I have learn'd to lose as
little of my kindness as I can. I'll do good to no man against his
will, certainly. When were you at the college?

CLER: What college?

TRUE: As if you knew not!

CLER: No faith, I came but from court yesterday.

TRUE: Why, is it not arrived there yet, the news? A new foundation,
sir, here in the town, of ladies, that call themselves the
collegiates, an order between courtiers and country-madams,
that live from their husbands; and give entertainment to all the
wits, and braveries of the time, as they call them: cry down, or
up, what they like or dislike in a brain or a fashion, with most
masculine, or rather hermaphroditical authority; and every day
gain to their college some new probationer.

CLER: Who is the president?

TRUE: The grave, and youthful matron, the lady Haughty.

CLER: A pox of her autumnal face, her pieced beauty! there's no man
can be admitted till she be ready, now-a-days, till she has
painted, and perfumed, and wash'd, and scour'd, but the boy here;
and him she wipes her oil'd lips upon, like a sponge. I have made
a song, I pray thee hear it, on the subject.


Still to be neat, still to be drest,
As you were going to a feast;
Still to be powder'd, still perfum'd;
Lady, it is to be presumed,
Though art's hid causes are not found,
All is not sweet, all is not sound.

Give me a look, give me a face,
That makes simplicity a grace;
Robes loosely flowing, hair as free:
Such sweet neglect more taketh me,
Then all the adulteries of art;
They strike mine eyes, but not my heart.

TRUE: And I am clearly on the other side: I love a good dressing
before any beauty o' the world. O, a woman is then like a
delicate garden; nor is there one kind of it; she may vary every
hour; take often counsel of her glass, and choose the best. If
she have good ears, shew them; good hair, lay it out; good
legs, wear short clothes; a good hand, discover it often;
practise any art to mend breath, cleanse teeth, repair eye-brows;
paint, and profess it.

CLER: How? publicly?

TRUE: The doing of it, not the manner: that must be private. Many
things that seem foul in the doing, do please done. A lady
should, indeed, study her face, when we think she sleeps; nor,
when the doors are shut, should men be enquiring; all is sacred
within, then. Is it for us to see their perukes put on, their
false teeth, their complexion, their eye-brows, their nails? You
see guilders will not work, but inclosed. They must not discover
how little serves, with the help of art, to adorn a great deal.
How long did the canvas hang afore Aldgate? Were the people
suffered to see the city's Love and Charity, while they were rude
stone, before they were painted and burnish'd? No: no more should
Servants approach their mistresses, but when they are complete and

CLER: Well said, my Truewit.

TRUE: And a wise lady will keep a guard always upon the place, that
she may do things securely. I once followed a rude fellow into a
chamber, where the poor madam, for haste, and troubled, snatch'd
at her peruke to cover her baldness; and put it on the wrong way.

CLER: O prodigy!

TRUE: And the unconscionable knave held her in complement an hour
with that reverst face, when I still look'd when she should talk
from the t'other side.

CLER: Why, thou shouldst have relieved her.

TRUE: No, faith, I let her alone, as we'll let this argument, if you
please, and pass to another. When saw you Dauphine Eugenie?

CLER: Not these three days. Shall we go to him this morning? he is
very melancholy, I hear.

TRUE: Sick of the uncle? is he? I met that stiff piece of
formality, his uncle, yesterday, with a huge turban of night-caps
on his head, buckled over his ears.

CLER: O, that's his custom when he walks abroad. He can endure no
noise, man.

TRUE: So I have heard. But is the disease so ridiculous in him as it
is made? They say he has been upon divers treaties with the
fish-wives and orange-women; and articles propounded between
them: marry, the chimney-sweepers will not be drawn in.

CLER: No, nor the broom-men: they stand out stiffly. He cannot
endure a costard-monger, he swoons if he hear one.

TRUE: Methinks a smith should be ominous.

CLER: Or any hammer-man. A brasier is not suffer'd to dwell in the
parish, nor an armourer. He would have hang'd a pewterer's prentice
once on a Shrove-tuesday's riot, for being of that trade, when the
rest were quit.

TRUE: A trumpet should fright him terribly, or the hautboys.

CLER: Out of his senses. The waights of the city have a pension of
him not to come near that ward. This youth practised on him one
night like the bell-man; and never left till he had brought him
down to the door with a long-sword: and there left him
flourishing with the air.

PAGE: Why, sir, he hath chosen a street to lie in so narrow at both
ends, that it will receive no coaches, nor carts, nor any of these
common noises: and therefore we that love him, devise to bring him
in such as we may, now and then, for his exercise, to breathe him.
He would grow resty else in his ease: his virtue would rust without
action. I entreated a bearward, one day, to come down with the
dogs of some four parishes that way, and I thank him he did;
and cried his games under master Morose's window: till he was
sent crying away, with his head made a most bleeding spectacle to
the multitude. And, another time, a fencer marchng to his prize, had
his drum most tragically run through, for taking that street in his
way at my request.

TRUE: A good wag! How does he for the bells?

CLER: O, in the Queen's time, he was wont to go out of town every
Saturday at ten o'clock, or on holy day eves. But now, by reason of
the sickness, the perpetuity of ringing has made him devise a
room, with double walls, and treble ceilings; the windows close
shut and caulk'd: and there he lives by candlelight. He turn'd away
a man, last week, for having a pair of new shoes that creak'd.
And this fellow waits on him now in tennis-court socks, or slippers
soled with wool: and they talk each to other in a trunk. See, who
comes here!


DAUP: How now! what ail you sirs? dumb?

TRUE: Struck into stone, almost, I am here, with tales o' thine
uncle. There was never such a prodigy heard of.

DAUP: I would you would once lose this subject, my masters, for my
sake. They are such as you are, that have brought me into that
predicament I am with him.

TRUE: How is that?

DAUP: Marry, that he will disinherit me; no more. He thinks, I and
my company are authors of all the ridiculous Acts and Monuments are
told of him.

TRUE: S'lid, I would be the author of more to vex him; that purpose
deserves it: it gives thee law of plaguing him. I will tell thee
what I would do. I would make a false almanack; get it printed:
and then have him drawn out on a coronation day to the Tower-wharf,
and kill him with the noise of the ordnance. Disinherit thee! he
cannot, man. Art not thou next of blood, and his sister's son?

DAUP: Ay, but he will thrust me out of it, he vows, and marry.

TRUE: How! that's a more portent. Can he endure no noise, and will
venture on a wife?

CLER: Yes: why thou art a stranger, it seems, to his best trick,
yet. He has employed a fellow this half year all over England to
hearken him out a dumb woman; be she of any form, or any
quality, so she be able to bear children: her silence is dowry
enough, he says.

TRUE: But I trust to God he has found none.

CLER: No; but he has heard of one that is lodged in the next street
to him, who is exceedingly soft-spoken; thrifty of her speech; that
spends but six words a day. And her he's about now, and shall have

TRUE: Is't possible! who is his agent in the business?

CLER: Marry a barber; one Cutbeard; an honest fellow, one that
tells Dauphine all here.

TRUE: Why you oppress me with wonder: a woman, and a barber, and
love no noise!

CLER: Yes, faith. The fellow trims him silently, and has not the
knack with his sheers or his fingers: and that continence in a
barber he thinks so eminent a virtue, as it has made him chief of
his counsel.

TRUE: Is the barber to be seen, or the wench?

CLER: Yes, that they are.

TRUE: I prithee, Dauphine, let us go thither.

DAUP: I have some business now: I cannot, i'faith.

TRUE: You shall have no business shall make you neglect this, sir;
we'll make her talk, believe it; or, if she will not, we can give
out at least so much as shall interrupt the treaty; we will break
it. Thou art bound in conscience, when he suspects thee without
cause, to torment him.

DAUP: Not I, by any means. I will give no suffrage to't. He shall
never have that plea against me, that I opposed the least phant'sy
of his. Let it lie upon my stars to be guilty, I'll be innocent.

TRUE: Yes, and be poor, and beg; do, innocent: when some groom of
his has got him an heir, or this barber, if he himself cannot.
Innocent!--I prithee, Ned, where lies she? let him be innocent

CLER: Why, right over against the barber's; in the house where
sir John Daw lies.

TRUE: You do not mean to confound me!

CLER: Why?

TRUE: Does he that would marry her know so much?

CLER: I cannot tell.

TRUE: 'Twere enough of imputation to her with him.

CLER: Why?

TRUE: The only talking sir in the town!	Jack Daw! and he teach her
not to speak!--God be wi' you. I have some business too.

CLER: Will you not go thither, then?

TRUE: Not with the danger to meet Daw, for mine ears.

CLER: Why? I thought you two had been upon very good terms.

TRUE: Yes, of keeping distance.

CLER: They say, he is a very good scholar.

TRUE: Ay, and he says it first. A pox on him, a fellow that
pretends only to learning, buys titles, and nothing else of
books in him!

CLER: The world reports him to be very learned.

TRUE: I am sorry the world should so conspire to belie him.

CLER: Good faith, I have heard very good things come from him.

TRUE: You may; there's none so desperately ignorant to deny that:
would they were his own! God be wi' you, gentleman.


CLER: This is very abrupt!

DAUP: Come, you are a strange open man, to tell every thing thus.

CLER: Why, believe it, Dauphine, Truewit's a very honest fellow.

DAUP: I think no other: but this frank nature of his is not for

CLER: Nay, then, you are mistaken, Dauphine: I know where he has been
well trusted, and discharged the trust very truly, and heartily.

DAUP: I contend not, Ned; but with the fewer a business is carried,
it is ever the safer. Now we are alone, if you will go thither, I
am for you.

CLER: When were you there?

DAUP: Last night: and such a Decameron of sport fallen out! Boccace
never thought of the like. Daw does nothing but court her; and the
wrong way. He would lie with her, and praises her modesty; desires
that she would talk and be free, and commends her silence in
verses: which he reads, and swears are the best that ever man
made. Then rails at his fortunes, stamps, and mutines, why he is
not made a counsellor, and call'd to affairs of state.

CLER: I prithee let's go. I would fain partake this. Some water,


DAUP: We are invited to dinner together, he and I, by one that came
thither to him, sir La-Foole.

CLER: O, that's a precious mannikin.

DAUP: Do you know him?

CLER: Ay, and he will know you too, if e'er he saw you but once,
though you should meet him at church in the midst of prayers. He is
one of the braveries, though he be none of the wits. He will salute
a judge upon the bench, and a bishop in the pulpit, a lawyer when
he is pleading at the bar, and a lady when she is dancing in a
masque, and put her out. He does give plays, and suppers, and
invites his guests to them, aloud, out of his window, as they
ride by in coaches. He has a lodging in the Strand for the purpose:
or to watch when ladies are gone to the china-houses, or the
Exchange, that he may meet them by chance, and give them presents,
some two or three hundred pounds' worth of toys, to be laugh'd at.
He is never without a spare banquet, or sweet-meats in his chamber,
for their women to alight at, and come up to for a bait.

DAUP: Excellent! he was a fine youth last night; but now he is much
finer! what is his Christian name? I have forgot.


CLER: Sir Amorous La-Foole.

PAGE: The gentleman is here below that owns that name.

CLER: 'Heart, he's come to invite me to dinner, I hold my life.

DAUP: Like enough: prithee, let's have him up.

CLER: Boy, marshal him.

PAGE: With a truncheon, sir?

CLER: Away, I beseech you. 
I'll make him tell us his pedegree, now; and what meat he has to
dinner; and who are his guests; and the whole course of his
fortunes: with a breath.


LA-F: 'Save, dear sir Dauphine! honoured master Clerimont!

CLER: Sir Amorous! you have very much honested my lodging with your

LA-F: Good faith, it is a fine lodging: almost as delicate a lodging
as mine.

CLER: Not so, sir.

LA-F: Excuse me, sir, if it were in the Strand, I assure you. I am
come, master Clerimont, to entreat you to wait upon two or three
ladies, to dinner, to-day.

CLER: How, sir! wait upon them? did you ever see me carry dishes?

LA-F: No, sir, dispense with me; I meant, to bear them company.

CLER: O, that I will, sir: the doubtfulness of your phrase, believe
it, sir, would breed you a quarrel once an hour, with the terrible
boys, if you should but keep them fellowship a day.

LA-F: It should be extremely against my will, sir, if I contested
with any man.

CLER: I believe it, sir; where hold you your feast?

LA-F: At Tom Otter's, sir.

PAGE: Tom Otter? what's he?

LA-F: Captain Otter, sir; he is a kind of gamester, but he has had
command both by sea and by land.

PAGE: O, then he is animal amphibium?

LA-F: Ay, sir: his wife was the rich china-woman, that the courtiers
visited so often; that gave the rare entertainment. She commands
all at home.

CLER: Then she is captain Otter.

LA-F: You say very well, sir: she is my kinswoman, a La-Foole by the
mother-side, and will invite any great ladies for my sake.

PAGE: Not of the La-Fooles of Essex?

LA-F: No, sir, the La-Fooles of London.

CLER: Now, he's in. [ASIDE.]

LA-F: They all come out of our house, the La-Fooles of the north, the
La-Fooles of the west, the La-Fooles of the east and south--we are
as ancient a family as any is in Europe--but I myself am descended
lineally of the French La-Fooles--and, we do bear for our coat
yellow, or or, checker'd azure, and gules, and some three or four
colours more, which is a very noted coat, and has, sometimes, been
solemnly worn by divers nobility of our house--but let that go,
antiquity is not respected now.--I had a brace of fat does sent me,
gentlemen, and half a dozen of pheasants, a dozen or two of
godwits, and some other fowl, which I would have eaten, while they
are good, and in good company:--there will be a great lady, or two,
my lady Haughty, my lady Centaure, mistress Dol Mavis--and they come
o' purpose to see the silent gentlewoman, mistress Epicoene, that
honest sir John Daw has promis'd to bring thither--and then, mistress
Trusty, my lady's woman, will be there too, and this honourable
knight, sir Dauphine, with yourself, master Clerimont--and we'll
be very merry, and have fidlers, and dance.--I have been a mad wag
in my time, and have spent some crowns since I was a page in
court, to my lord Lofty, and after, my lady's gentleman-usher, who
got me knighted in Ireland, since it pleased my elder brother to
die.--I had as fair a gold jerkin on that day, as any worn in
the island voyage, or at Cadiz, none dispraised; and I came over in
it hither, shew'd myself to my friends in court, and after went
down to my tenants in the country, and surveyed my lands, let
new leases, took their money, spent it in the eye o' the land
here, upon ladies:--and now I can take up at my pleasure.

DAUP: Can you take up ladies, sir?

CLER: O, let him breathe, he has not recover'd.

DAUP: Would I were your half in that commodity!

LA-F.: No, sir, excuse me: I meant money, which can take up any
thing. I have another guest or two, to invite, and say as much to,
gentlemen. I will take my leave abruptly, in hope you will not
fail--Your servant.


DAUP: We will not fail you, sir precious La-Foole; but she shall,
that your ladies come to see, if I have credit afore sir Daw.

CLER: Did you ever hear such a wind-sucker, as this?

DAUP: Or, such a rook as the other! that will betray his mistress
to be seen! Come, 'tis time we prevented it.



ACT 2. SCENE 2.1.



MOR: Cannot I, yet, find out a more compendious method, than by
this trunk, to save my servants the labour of speech, and mine
ears the discord of sounds? Let me see: all discourses but my
own afflict me, they seem harsh, impertinent, and irksome. Is
it not possible, that thou should'st answer me by signs, and I
apprehend thee, fellow? Speak not, though I question you. You have
taken the ring off from the street door, as I bade you? answer me
not by speech, but by silence; unless it be otherwise 
--very good. And you have fastened on a thick quilt, or flock-bed,
on the outside of the door; that if they knock with their
daggers, or with brick-bats, they can make no noise?--But with
your leg, your answer, unless it be otherwise,
--Very good. This is not only fit modesty in a servant, but good
state and discretion in a master. And you have been with Cutbeard
the barber, to have him come to me?
--Good. And, he will come presently? Answer me not but with your
leg, unless it be otherwise: if it be otherwise, shake your
head, or shrug.
--So! Your Italian and Spaniard are wise in these: and it is a
frugal and comely gravity. How long will it be ere Cutbeard come?
Stay, if an hour, hold up your whole hand, if half an hour, two
fingers; if a quarter, one;
--Good: half a quarter? 'tis well. And have you given him a key,
to come in without knocking?
--good. And is the lock oil'd, and the hinges, to-day?
--good. And the quilting of the stairs no where worn out, and
--Very good. I see, by much doctrine, and impulsion, it may be
effected: stand by. The Turk, in this divine discipline, is
admirable, exceeding all the potentates of the earth; still waited
on by mutes; and all his commands so executed; yea, even in the
war, as I have heard, and in his marches, most of his charges
and directions given by signs, and with silence: an exquisite
art! and I am heartily ashamed, and angry oftentimes, that the
princes of Christendom should suffer a barbarian to transcend
them in so high a point of felicity. I will practise it hereafter.
--How now? oh! oh! what villain, what prodigy of mankind is that?
--Oh! cut his throat, cut his throat! what murderer, hell-hound,
devil can this be?


MUTE: It is a post from the court--

MOR: Out rogue! and must thou blow thy horn too?

MUTE: Alas, it is a post from the court, sir, that says, he must
speak with you, pain of death--

MOR: Pain of thy life, be silent!


TRUE: By your leave, sir;--I am a stranger here:--Is your name
master Morose? is your name master Morose? Fishes! Pythagoreans
all! This is strange. What say you, sir? nothing? Has Harpocrates
been here with his club, among you? Well sir, I will believe you
to be the man at this time: I will venture upon you, sir. Your
friends at court commend them to you, sir--

MOR: O men! O manners! was there ever such an impudence?

TRUE: And are extremely solicitous for you, sir.

MOR: Whose knave are you?

TRUE: Mine own knave, and your compeer, sir.

MOR: Fetch me my sword--

TRUE: You shall taste the one half of my dagger, if you do, groom;
and you, the other, if you stir, sir: Be patient, I charge you,
in the king's name, and hear me without insurrection. They say, you
are to marry; to marry! do you mark, sir?

MOR: How then, rude companion!

TRUE: Marry, your friends do wonder, sir, the Thames being so near,
wherein you may drown, so handsomely; or London-bridge, at a low
fall, with a fine leap, to hurry you down the stream; or, such a
delicate steeple, in the town as Bow, to vault from; or, a braver
height, as Paul's; Or, if you affected to do it nearer home, and a
shorter way, an excellent garret-window into the street; or, a
beam in the said garret, with this halter
which they have sent, and desire, that you would sooner commit your
grave head to this knot, than to the wedlock noose; or, take a
little sublimate, and go out of the world like a rat; or a fly,
as one said, with a straw in your arse: any way, rather than to
follow this goblin Matrimony. Alas, sir, do you ever think to
find a chaste wife in these times? now? when there are so many
masques, plays, Puritan preachings, mad folks, and other strange
sights to be seen daily, private and public? If you had lived
in king Ethelred's time, sir, or Edward the Confessor, you might,
perhaps, have found one in some cold country hamlet, then, a dull
frosty wench, would have been contented with one man: now, they
will as soon be pleased with one leg, or one eye. I'll tell you,
sir, the monstrous hazards you shall run with a wife.

MOR: Good sir, have I ever cozen'd any friends of yours of their
land? bought their possessions? taken forfeit of their mortgage?
begg'd a reversion from them? bastarded their issue? What have I
done, that may deserve this?

TRUE: Nothing, sir, that I know, but your itch of marriage.

MOR: Why? if I had made an assassinate upon your father, vitiated
your mother, ravished your sisters--

TRUE: I would kill you, sir, I would kill you, if you had.

MOR: Why, you do more in this, sir: it were a vengeance centuple,
for all facinorous acts that could be named, to do that you do.

TRUE: Alas, sir, I am but a messenger: I but tell you, what you
must hear. It seems your friends are careful after your soul's
health, sir, and would have you know the danger: (but you may do
your pleasure for all them, I persuade not, sir.) If, after you are
married, your wife do run away with a vaulter, or the Frenchman
that walks upon ropes, or him that dances the jig, or a fencer
for his skill at his weapon; why it is not their fault, they have
discharged their consciences; when you know what may happen. Nay,
suffer valiantly, sir, for I must tell you all the perils that
you are obnoxious to. If she be fair, young and vegetous, no sweet-
meats ever drew more flies; all the yellow doublets and great
roses in the town will be there. If foul and crooked, she'll be
with them, and buy those doublets and roses, sir. If rich, and
that you marry her dowry, not her, she'll reign in your house
as imperious as a widow. If noble, all her kindred will be your
tyrants. If fruitful, as proud as May, and humorous as April; she
must have her doctors, her midwives, her nurses, her longings every
hour; though it be for the dearest morsel of man. If learned,
there was never such a parrot; all your patrimony will be too
little for the guests that must be invited to hear her speak
Latin and Greek; and you must lie with her in those languages
too, if you will please her. If precise, you must feast all the
silenced brethren, once in three days; salute the sisters;
entertain the whole family, or wood of them; and hear long-winded
exercises, singings and catechisings, which you are not given to,
and yet must give for: to please the zealous matron your wife, who
for the holy cause, will cozen you, over and above. You begin to
sweat, sir! but this is not half, i'faith: you may do your
pleasure, notwithstanding, as I said before: I come not to persuade
--Upon my faith, master servingman, if you do stir, I will beat

MOR: O, what is my sin! what is my sin!

TRUE: Then, if you love your wife, or rather dote on her, sir: O, how
she'll torture you! and take pleasure in your torments! you shall
lie with her but when she lists; she will not hurt her beauty, her
complexion; or it must be for that jewel, or that pearl, when she
does: every half hour's pleasure must be bought anew: and with the
same pain and charge you woo'd her at first. Then you must
keep what servants she please; what company she will; that friend
must not visit you without her license; and him she loves most, she
will seem to hate eagerliest, to decline your jealousy; or, feign
to be jealous of you first; and for that cause go live with her
she-friend, or cousin at the college, that can instruct her in all
the mysteries of writing letters, corrupting servants, taming
spies; where she must have that rich gown for such a great day; a
new one for the next; a richer for the third; be served in silver;
have the chamber fill'd with a succession of grooms, footmen,
ushers, and other messengers; besides embroiderers, jewellers,
tire-women, sempsters, feathermen, perfumers; whilst she feels not
how the land drops away; nor the acres melt; nor foresees the
change, when the mercer has your woods for her velvets; never
weighs what her pride costs, sir: so she may kiss a page, or a
smooth chin, that has the despair of a beard; be a stateswoman,
know all the news, what was done at Salisbury, what at the Bath,
what at court, what in progress; or, so she may censure poets, and
authors, and styles, and compare them, Daniel with Spenser, Jonson
with the t'other youth, and so forth: or be thought cunning in
controversies, or the very knots of divinity; and have often in
her mouth the state of the question: and then skip to the
mathematics, and demonstration: and answer in religion to one,
in state to another, in bawdry to a third.

MOR: O, O!

TRUE: All this is very true, sir. And then her going in disguise to
that conjurer, and this cunning woman: where the first question is,
how soon you shall die? next, if her present servant love her? 
next, if she shall have a new servant? and how many? which of her
family would make the best bawd, male, or female? what precedence
she shall have by her next match? and sets down the answers, and
believes them above the scriptures. Nay, perhaps she will study the

MOR: Gentle sir, have you done? have you had your pleasure of me?
I'll think of these things.

TRUE: Yes sir: and then comes reeking home of vapour and sweat,
with going a foot, and lies in a month of a new face, all oil and
birdlime; and rises in asses' milk, and is cleansed with a new
fucus: God be wi' you, sir. One thing more, which I had almost
forgot. This too, with whom you are to marry, may have made a
conveyance of her virginity afore hand, as your wise widows do of
their states, before they marry, in trust to some friend, sir: who
can tell? Or if she have not done it yet, she may do, upon the
wedding-day, or the night before, and antedate you cuckold. The
like has been heard of in nature. 'Tis no devised, impossible
thing, sir. God be wi' you: I'll be bold to leave this rope with
you, sir, for a remembrance. Farewell, Mute!


MOR: Come, have me to my chamber: but first shut the door.
O, shut the door, shut the door! is he come again?


CUT: 'tis I, sir, your barber.

MOR: O, Cutbeard, Cutbeard, Cutbeard! here has been a cut-throat
with me: help me in to my bed, and give me physic with thy counsel.


SCENE 2.2.



DAW: Nay, an she will, let her refuse at her own charges: 'tis
nothing to me, gentlemen: but she will not be invited to the like
feasts or guests every day.

CLER: O, by no means, she may not refuse--to stay at home, if you
love your reputation: 'Slight, you are invited thither o' purpose
to be seen, and laughed at by the lady of the college, and her
shadows. This trumpeter hath proclaim'd you.

DAUP: You shall not go; let him be laugh'd at in your stead, for
not bringing you: and put him to his extemporal faculty of fooling
and talking loud, to satisfy the company.

CLER: He will suspect us, talk aloud.--'Pray, mistress Epicoene,
let us see your verses; we have sir John Daw's leave: do not
conceal your servant's merit, and your own glories.

EPI: They'll prove my servant's glories, if you have his leave so

DAUP: His vain-glories, lady!

DAW: Shew them, shew them, mistress, I dare own them.

EPI: Judge you, what glories.

DAW: Nay, I'll read them myself too: an author must recite his
own works. It is a madrigal of Modesty.
Modest, and fair, for fair and good are near
Neighbours, howe'er.--

DAUP: Very good.

CLER: Ay, is't not?

DAW: No noble virtue ever was alone,
But two in one.

DAUP: Excellent!

CLER: That again, I pray, sir John.

DAUP: It has something in't like rare wit and sense.

CLER: Peace.

DAW: No noble virtue ever was alone,
But two in one.
Then, when I praise sweet modesty, I praise
Bright beauty's rays:
And having praised both beauty and modesty,
I have praised thee.

DAUP: Admirable!

CLER: How it chimes, and cries tink in the close, divinely!

DAUP: Ay, 'tis Seneca.

CLER: No, I think 'tis Plutarch.

DAW: The dor on Plutarch, and Seneca! I hate it: they are mine own
imaginations, by that light. I wonder those fellows have such
credit with gentlemen.

CLER: They are very grave authors.

DAW: Grave asses! mere essayists: a few loose sentences, and that's
all. A man would talk so, his whole age: I do utter as good things
every hour, if they were collected and observed, as either of

DAUP: Indeed, sir John!

CLER: He must needs; living among the wits and braveries too.

DAUP: Ay, and being president of them, as he is.

DAW: There's Aristotle, a mere common-place fellow; Plato, a
discourser; Thucydides and Livy, tedious and dry; Tacitus, an
entire knot: sometimes worth the untying, very seldom.

CLER: What do you think of the poets, sir John?

DAW: Not worthy to be named for authors. Homer, an old tedious,
prolix ass, talks of curriers, and chines of beef. Virgil of
dunging of land, and bees. Horace, of I know not what.

CLER: I think so.

DAW: And so Pindarus, Lycophron, Anacreon, Catullus, Seneca the
tragedian, Lucan, Propertius, Tibullus, Martial, Juvenal,
Ausonius, Statius, Politian, Valerius Flaccus, and the rest--

CLER: What a sack full of their names he has got!

DAUP: And how he pours them out! Politian with Valerius Flaccus!

CLER: Was not the character right of him?

DAUP: As could be made, i'faith.

DAW: And Persius, a crabbed coxcomb, not to be endured.

DAUP: Why, whom do you account for authors, sir John Daw?

DAW: Syntagma juris civilis; Corpus juris civilis; Corpus juris
canonici; the king of Spain's bible--

DAUP: Is the king of Spain's bible an author?

CLER: Yes, and Syntagma.

DAUP: What was that Syntagma, sir?

DAW: A civil lawyer, a Spaniard.

DAUP: Sure, Corpus was a Dutchman.

CLER: Ay, both the Corpuses, I knew 'em: they were very corpulent

DAW: And, then there's Vatablus, Pomponatius, Symancha: the other
are not to be received, within the thought of a scholar.

DAUP: 'Fore God, you have a simple learned servant, lady,--
in titles. [ASIDE.]

CLER: I wonder that he is not called to the helm, and made a

DAUP: He is one extraordinary.

CLER: Nay, but in ordinary: to say truth, the state wants such.

DAUP: Why that will follow.

CLER: I muse a mistress can be so silent to the dotes of such a

DAW: 'Tis her virtue, sir. I have written somewhat of her silence

DAUP: In verse, sir John?

CLER: What else?

DAUP: Why? how can you justify your own being of a poet, that so
slight all the old poets?

DAW: Why? every man that writes in verse is not a poet; you have of
the wits that write verses, and yet are no poets: they are poets
that live by it, the poor fellows that live by it.

DAUP: Why, would not you live by your verses, sir John?

CLER: No, 'twere pity he should. A knight live by his verses? he
did not make them to that end, I hope.

DAUP: And yet the noble Sidney lives by his, and the noble family
not ashamed.

CLER: Ay, he profest himself; but sir John Daw has more caution:
he'll not hinder his own rising in the state so much. Do you
think he will? Your verses, good sir John, and no poems.

DAW: Silence in woman, is like speech in man,
Deny't who can.

DAUP: Not I, believe it: your reason, sir.

DAW: Nor, is't a tale,
That female vice should be a virtue male,
Or masculine vice a female virtue be:
You shall it see
Prov'd with increase;
I know to speak, and she to hold her peace.
Do you conceive me, gentlemen?

DAUP: No, faith; how mean you "with increase," sir John?

DAW: Why, with increase is, when I court her for the common cause of
mankind; and she says nothing, but "consentire videtur": and in
time is gravida.

DAUP: Then this is a ballad of procreation?

CLER: A madrigal of procreation; you mistake.

EPI: 'Pray give me my verses again, servant.

DAW: If you'll ask them aloud, you shall.


CLER: See, here's Truewit again!--Where hast thou been, in the
name of madness! thus accoutred with thy horn?

TRUE: Where the sound of it might have pierced your sense with
gladness, had you been in ear-reach of it. Dauphine, fall down
and worship me: I have forbid the bans, lad: I have been with thy
virtuous uncle, and have broke the match.

DAUP: You have not, I hope.

TRUE: Yes faith; if thou shouldst hope otherwise, I should repent me:
this horn got me entrance; kiss it. I had no other way to get in,
but by faining to be a post; but when I got in once, I proved none,
but rather the contrary, turn'd him into a post, or a stone, or
what is stiffer, with thundering into him the incommodities of a
wife, and the miseries of marriage. If ever Gorgon were seen in
the shape of a woman, he hath seen her in my description: I have
put him off o' that scent for ever.--Why do you not applaud and
adore me, sirs? why stand you mute? are you stupid? You are not
worthy of the benefit.

DAUP: Did not I tell you? Mischief!--

CLER: I would you had placed this benefit somewhere else.

TRUE: Why so?

CLER: 'Slight, you have done the most inconsiderate, rash, weak
thing, that ever man did to his friend.

DAUP: Friend! if the most malicious enemy I have, had studied to
inflict an injury upon me, it could not be a greater.

TRUE: Wherein, for Gods-sake? Gentlemen, come to yourselves again.

DAUP: But I presaged thus much afore to you.

CLER: Would my lips had been solder'd when I spake on't. Slight,
what moved you to be thus impertinent?

TRUE: My masters, do not put on this strange face to pay my
courtesy; off with this visor. Have good turns done you, and thank
'em this way!

DAUP: 'Fore heav'n, you have undone me. That which I have plotted
for, and been maturing now these four months, you have blasted in a
minute: Now I am lost, I may speak. This gentlewoman was lodged
here by me o' purpose, and, to be put upon my uncle, hath profest
this obstinate silence for my sake; being my entire friend, and
one that for the requital of such a fortune as to marry him,
would have made me very ample conditions: where now, all my hopes
are utterly miscarried by this unlucky accident.

CLER: Thus 'tis when a man will be ignorantly officious, do
services, and not know his why; I wonder what courteous itch
possest you. You never did absurder part in your life, nor a
greater trespass to friendship or humanity.

DAUP: Faith, you may forgive it best: 'twas your cause principally.

CLER: I know it, would it had not.


DAUP: How now, Cutbeard! what news?

CUT: The best, the happiest that ever was, sir. There has been a
mad gentleman with your uncle, this morning,
--I think this be the gentleman--that has almost talk'd him out
of his wits, with threatening him from marriage--

DAUP: On, I prithee.

CUT: And your uncle, sir, he thinks 'twas done by your procurement;
therefore he will see the party you wot of presently: and if he
like her, he says, and that she be so inclining to dumb as I
have told him, he swears he will marry her, to-day, instantly,
and not defer it a minute longer.

DAUP: Excellent! beyond our expectation!

TRUE: Beyond our expectation! By this light, I knew it would be

DAUP: Nay, sweet Truewit, forgive me.

TRUE: No, I was ignorantly officious, impertinent: this was the
absurd, weak part.

CLER: Wilt thou ascribe that to merit now, was mere fortune?

TRUE: Fortune! mere providence. Fortune had not a finger in't. I saw
it must necessarily in nature fall out so: my genius is never false
to me in these things. Shew me how it could be otherwise.

DAUP: Nay, gentlemen, contend not, 'tis well now.

TRUE: Alas, I let him go on with inconsiderate, and rash, and what
he pleas'd.

CLER: Away, thou strange justifier of thyself, to be wiser than thou
wert, by the event!

TRUE: Event! by this light, thou shalt never persuade me, but I
foresaw it as well as the stars themselves.

DAUP: Nay, gentlemen, 'tis well now. Do you two entertain sir John
Daw with discourse, while I send her away with instructions.

TRUE: I will be acquainted with her first, by your favour.

CLER: Master True-wit, lady, a friend of ours.

TRUE: I am sorry I have not known you sooner, lady, to celebrate
this rare virtue of your silence.


CLER: Faith, an you had come sooner, you should have seen and
heard her well celebrated in sir John Daw's madrigals.

TRUE [ADVANCES TO DAW.]: Jack Daw, God save you! when saw you

DAW: Not since last night, master Truewit.

TRUE: That's a miracle! I thought you two had been inseparable.

DAW: He is gone to invite his guests.

TRUE: 'Odso! 'tis true! What a false memory have I towards that
man! I am one: I met him even now, upon that he calls his delicate
fine black horse, rid into a foam, with posting from place to
place, and person to person, to give them the cue--

CLER: Lest they should forget?

TRUE: Yes: There was never poor captain took more pains at a
muster to shew men, than he, at this meal, to shew friends.

DAW: It is his quarter-feast, sir.

CLER: What! do you say so, sir John?

TRUE: Nay, Jack Daw will not be out, at the best friends he has,
to the talent of his wit: Where's his mistress, to hear and applaud
him? is she gone?

DAW: Is mistress Epicoene gone?

CLER: Gone afore, with sir Dauphine, I warrant, to the place.

TRUE: Gone afore! that were a manifest injury; a disgrace and a
half: to refuse him at such a festival-time as this, being a
bravery, and a wit too!

CLER: Tut, he'll swallow it like cream: he's better read in Jure
civili, than to esteem any thing a disgrace, is offer'd him from
a mistress.

DAW: Nay, let her e'en go; she shall sit alone, and be dumb in her
chamber a week together, for John Daw, I warrant her. Does she
refuse me?

CLER: No, sir, do not take it so to heart; she does not refuse you,
but a little neglects you. Good faith, Truewit, you were to blame,
to put it into his head, that she does refuse him.

TRUE: Sir, she does refuse him palpably, however you mince it. An I
were as he, I would swear to speak ne'er a word to her to-day

DAW: By this light, no more I will not.

TRUE: Nor to any body else, sir.

DAW: Nay, I will not say so, gentlemen.

CLER: It had been an excellent happy condition for the company, if
you could have drawn him to it. [ASIDE.]

DAW: I'll be very melancholY, i'faith.

CLER: As a dog, if I were as you, sir John.

TRUE: Or a snail, or a hog-louse: I would roll myself up for this
day, in troth, they should not unwind me.

DAW: By this pick-tooth, so I will.

CLER: 'Tis well done: He begins already to be angry with his teeth.

DAW: Will you go, gentlemen?

CLER: Nay, you must walk alone, if you be right melancholy, sir

TRUE: Yes, sir, we'll dog you, we'll follow you afar off.


CLER: Was there ever such a two yards of knighthood measured out by
time, to be sold to laughter?

TRUE: A mere talking mole, hang him! no mushroom was ever so fresh.
A fellow so utterly nothing, as he knows not what he would be.

CLER: Let's follow him: but first, let's go to Dauphine, he's
hovering about the house to hear what news.

TRUE: Content.


SCENE 2.3.



MOR: Welcome Cutbeard! draw near with your fair charge: and in her
ear softly entreat her to unmasthey.
--So! Is the door shut?
--Enough. Now, Cutbeard, with the same discipline I use to my
family, I will question you. As I conceive, Cutbeard, this
gentlewoman is she you have provided, and brought, in hope she
will fit me in the place and person of a wife? Answer me not, but
with your leg, unless it be otherwise:
--Very well done, Cutbeard. I conceive, besides, Cutbeard, you
have been pre-acquainted with her birth, education, and qualities,
or else you would not prefer her to my acceptance, in the weighty
consequence of marriage.
--This I conceive, Cutbeard. Answer me not but with your leg, unless
it be otherwise.
--Very well done, Cutbeard. Give aside now a little, and leave me to
examine her condition, and aptitude to my affection.
--She is exceeding fair, and of a special good favour; a sweet
composition or harmony of limbs: her temper of beauty has the
true height of my blood. The knave hath exceedingly well fitted me
without: I will now try her within. Come near, fair gentlewoman:
let not my behaviour seem rude, though unto you, being rare, it
may haply appear strange.
--Nay, lady, you may speak, though Cutbeard and my man, might not;
for, of all sounds, only the sweet voice of a fair lady has the
just length of mine ears. I beseech you, say, lady; out of the
first fire of meeting eyes, they say, love is stricken: do you
feel any such motion suddenly shot into you, from any part you see
in me? ha, lady?
--Alas, lady, these answers by silent curtsies from you are too
courtless and simple. I have ever had my breeding in court: and
she that shall be my wife, must be accomplished with courtly and
audacious ornaments. Can you speak, lady?

EPI: [softly.] Judge you, forsooth.

MOR: What say you, lady? speak out, I beseech you.

EPI: Judge you, forsooth.

MOR: On my judgment, a divine softness! But can you naturally,
lady, as I enjoin these by doctrine and industry, refer yourself
to the search of my judgment, and, not taking pleasure in your
tongue, which is a woman's chiefest pleasure, think it plausible
to answer me by silent gestures, so long as my speeches jump
right with what you conceive?
--Excellent! divine! if it were possible she should hold out thus!
Peace, Cutbeard, thou art made for ever, as thou hast made me, if
this felicity have lasting: but I will try her further. Dear lady,
I am courtly, I tell you, and I must have mine ears banqueted with
pleasant and witty conferences, pretty girls, scoffs, and 
dalliance in her that I mean to choose for my bed-phere. The
ladies in court think it a most desperate impair to their
quickness of wit, and good carriage, if they cannot give
occasion for a man to court 'em; and when an amorous discourse is
set on foot, minister as good matter to continue it, as himself:
And do you alone so much differ from all them, that what they,
with so much circumstance, affect and toil for, to seem
learn'd, to seem judicious, to seem sharp and conceited, you
can bury in yourself with silence, and rather trust your graces
to the fair conscience of virtue, than to the world's or your own

EPI [SOFTLY]: I should be sorry else.

MOR: What say you lady? good lady, speak out.

EPI: I should be sorry else.

MOR: That sorrow doth fill me with gladness. O Morose, thou art
happy above mankind! pray that thou mayest contain thyself. I
will only put her to it once more, and it shall be with the utmost
touch and test of their sex. But hear me, fair lady; I do also
love to see her whom I shall choose for my heifer, to be the
first and principal in all fashions; precede all the dames at
court by a fortnight; have council of tailors, lineners,
lace-women, embroiderers, and sit with them sometimes twice a day
upon French intelligences; and then come forth varied like
nature, or oftener than she, and better by the help of art, her
emulous servant. This do I affect: and how will you be able, lady,
with this frugality of speech, to give the manifold but
necessary instructions, for that bodice, these sleeves, those
skirts, this cut, that stitch, this embroidery, that lace, this
wire, those knots, that ruff, those roses, this girdle, that
fanne, the t'other scarf, these gloves? Ha! what say you, lady?

EPI [SOFTLY]: I'll leave it to you, sir.

MOR: How, lady? pray you rise a note.

EPI: I leave it to wisdom and you, sir.

MOR: Admirable creature! I will trouble you no more: I will not
sin against so sweet a simplicity. Let me now be bold to print on
those divine lips the seal of being mine.--Cutbeard, I give thee
the lease of thy house free: thank me not but with thy leg
--I know what thou wouldst say, she's poor, and her friends
deceased. She has brought a wealthy dowry in her silence, Cutbeard;
and in respect of her poverty, Cutbeard, I shall have her more
loving and obedient, Cutbeard. Go thy ways, and get me a minister
presently, with a soft low voice, to marry us; and pray him he will
not be impertinent, but brief as he can; away: softly, 
--Sirrah, conduct your mistress into the dining-room, your now
--O my felicity! how I shall be revenged on mine insolent kinsman,
and his plots to fright me from marrying! This night I will get an
heir, and thrust him out of my blood, like a stranger; he would be
knighted, forsooth, and thought by that means to reign over me;
his title must do it: No, kinsman, I will now make you bring me
the tenth lord's and the sixteenth lady's letter, kinsman; and it
shall do you no good, kinsman. Your knighthood itself shall come
on its knees, and it shall be rejected; it shall be sued for its
fees to execution, and not be redeem'd; it shall cheat at the
twelvepenny ordinary, it knighthood, for its diet, all the term-
time, and tell tales for it in the vacation to the hostess; or it
knighthood shall do worse, take sanctuary in Cole-harbour, and fast.
It shall fright all its friends with borrowing letters; and when
one of the fourscore hath brought it knighthood ten shillings, it
knighthood shall go to the Cranes, or the Bear at the Bridge-foot,
and be drunk in fear: it shall not have money to discharge one
tavern-reckoning, to invite the old creditors to forbear it
knighthood, or the new, that should be, to trust it knighthood. It
shall be the tenth name in the bond to take up the commodity of
pipkins and stone jugs: and the part thereof shall not furnish it
knighthood forth for the attempting of a baker's widow, a brown
baker's widow. It shall give it knighthood's name, for a stallion,
to all gamesome citizens' wives, and be refused; when the master
of a dancing school, or how do you call him, the worst reveller in
the town is taken: it shall want clothes, and by reason of that,
wit, to fool to lawyers. It shall not have hope to repair itself by Constantinople, Ireland, or Virginia; but the best and last fortune
to it knighthood shall be to make Dol Tear-Sheet, or Kate Common a
lady: and so it knighthood may eat.


SCENE 2.4.



TRUE: Are you sure he is not gone by?

DAUP: No, I staid in the shop ever since.

CLER: But he may take the other end of the lane.

DAUP: No, I told him I would be here at this end: I appointed him

TRUE: What a barbarian it is to stay then!

DAUP: Yonder he comes.

CLER: And his charge left behind him, which is a very good sign,


DAUP: How now Cutbeard! succeeds it, or no?

CUT: Past imagination, sir, omnia secunda; you could not have
pray'd to have had it so well. Saltat senex, as it is in the
proverb; he does triumph in his felicity, admires the party! he
has given me the lease of my house too! and I am now going for a
silent minister to marry them, and away.

TRUE: 'Slight, get one of the silenced ministers, a zealous brother
would torment him purely.

CUT: Cum privilegio, sir.

DAUP: O, by no means, let's do nothing to hinder it now: when it
is done and finished, I am for you, for any device of vexation.

CUT: And that shall be within this half hour, upon my dexterity,
gentlemen. Contrive what you can in the mean time, bonis avibus.


CLER: How the slave doth Latin it!

TRUE: It would be made a jest to posterity, sirs, this day's mirth,
if ye will.

CLER: Beshrew his heart that will not, I pronounce.

DAUP: And for my part. What is it?

TRUE: To translate all La-Foole's company, and his feast thither,
to-day, to celebrate this bride-ale.

DAUP: Ay marry; but how will't be done?

TRUE: I'll undertake the directing of all the lady-guests thither,
and then the meat must follow.

CLER: For God's sake, let's effect it: it will be an excellent comedy
of affliction, so many several noises.

DAUP: But are they not at the other place already, think you?

TRUE: I'll warrant you for the college-honours: one of their faces
has not the priming colour laid on yet, nor the other her smock

CLER: O, but they'll rise earlier then ordinary, to a feast.

TRUE: Best go see, and assure ourselves.

CLER: Who knows the house?

TRUE: I will lead you: Were you never there yet?

DAUP: Not I.

CLER: Nor I.

TRUE: Where have you lived then? not know Tom Otter!

CLER: No: for God's sake, what is he?

TRUE: An excellent animal, equal with your Daw or La-Foole, if not
transcendant; and does Latin it as much as your barber: He is his
wife's subject, he calls her princess, and at such times as these
follows her up and down the house like a page, with his hat off,
partly for heat, partly for reverence. At this instant he is
marshalling of his bull, bear, and horse.

DAUP: What be those, in the name of Sphynx?

TRUE: Why, sir, he has been a great man at the Bear-garden in his
time; and from that subtle sport, has ta'en the witty denomination
of his chief carousing cups. One he calls his bull, another his
bear, another his horse. And then he has his lesser glasses, that
he calls his deer and his ape; and several degrees of them too;
and never is well, nor thinks any entertainment perfect, till
these be brought out, and set on the cupboard.

CLER: For God's love!--we should miss this, if we should not go.

TRUE: Nay, he has a thousand things as good, that will speak him
all day. He will rail on his wife, with certain common places,
behind her back; and to her face--

DAUP: No more of him. Let's go see him, I petition you.


ACT 3. SCENE 3.1.



OTT: Nay, good princess, hear me pauca verba.

MRS. OTT: By that light, I'll have you chain'd up, with your
bull-dogs, and bear-dogs, if you be not civil the sooner. I will
send you to kennel, i'faith. You were best bait me with your bull,
bear, and horse! Never a time that the courtiers or collegiates
come to the house, but you make it a Shrove-tuesday! I would have
you get your Whitsuntide velvet cap, and your staff in your hand,
to entertain them: yes, in troth, do.

OTT: Not so, princess, neither; but under correction, sweet
princess, give me leave.--These things I am known to the courtiers
by: It is reported to them for my humour, and they receive it so,
and do expect it. Tom Otter's bull, bear, and horse is known all
over England, in rerum natura.

MRS. OTT: 'Fore me, I will na-ture them over to Paris-garden, and
na-ture you thither too, if you pronounce them again. Is a bear a
fit beast, or a bull, to mix in society with great ladies? think in
your discretion, in any good policy.

OTT: The horse then, good princess.

MRS. OTT: Well, I am contented for the horse: they love to be
well horsed, I know. I love it myself.

OTT: And it is a delicate fine horse this. Poetarum Pegasus. Under
correction, princess, Jupiter did turn himself into a--taurus,
or bull, under correction, good princess.


MRS. OTT: By my integrity, I will send you over to the Bank-side,
I will commit you to the master of the Garden, if I hear but a
syllable more. Must my house or my roof be polluted with the
scent of bears and bulls, when it is perfumed for great ladies?
Is this according to the instrument, when I married you? that I
would be princess, and reign in mine own house: and you would be my
subject, and obey me? What did you bring me, should make you thus
peremptory? do I allow you your half-crown a day, to spend where
you will, among your gamsters, to vex and torment me at such
times as these? Who gives you your maintenance, I pray you? who
allows you your horse-meat and man's meat? your three suits of
apparel a year? your four pair of stockings, one silk, three
worsted? your clean linen, your bands and cuffs, when I can get
you to wear them?--'tis marle you have them on now.--Who graces you
with courtiers or great personages, to speak to you out of their
coaches, and come home to your house? Were you ever so much as
look'd upon by a lord or a lady, before I married you, but on the
Easter or Whitsun-holidays? and then out at the banquetting-house
window, when Ned Whiting or George Stone were at the stake?

TRUE: For Gods sake, let's go stave her off him.

MRS. OTT: Answer me to that. And did not I take you up from thence,
in an old greasy buff-doublet, with points, and green velvet
sleeves, out at the elbows? you forget this.

TRUE: She'll worry him, if we help not in time.


MRS. OTT: O, here are some of the gallants! Go to, behave yourself
distinctly, and with good morality: or, I protest, I will take
away your exhibition.

TRUE: By your leave, fair mistress Otter, I will be bold to enter
these gentlemen in your acquaintance.

MRS. OTT: It shall not be obnoxious, or difficil, sir.

TRUE: How does my noble captain? is the bull, bear, and horse in
rerum natura still?

OTT: Sir, sic visum superis.

MRS. OTT: I would you would but intimate them, do. Go your ways
in, and get toasts and butter made for the woodcocks. That's a fit
province for you.


CLER: Alas, what a tyranny is this poor fellow married to!

TRUE: O, but the sport will be anon, when we get him loose.

DAUP: Dares he ever speak?

TRUE: No Anabaptist ever rail'd with the like license: but mark
her language in the mean time, I beseech you.

MRS. OTT: Gentlemen, you are very aptly come. My cousin, sir
Amorous, will be here briefly.

TRUE: In good time lady. Was not sir John Daw here, to ask for
him, and the company?

MRS. OTT: I cannot assure you, master Truewit. Here was a very
melancholy knight in a ruff, that demanded my subject for somebody,
a gentleman, I think.

CLER: Ay, that was he, lady.

MRS. OTT: But he departed straight, I can resolve you.

DAUP: What an excellent choice phrase this lady expresses in.

TRUE: O, sir, she is the only authentical courtier, that is not
naturally bred one, in the city.

MRS. OTT: You have taken that report upon trust, gentlemen.

TRUE: No, I assure you, the court governs it so, lady, in your

MRS. OTT: I am the servant of the court and courtiers, sir.

TRUE: They are rather your idolaters.

MRS. OTT: Not so, sir.


DAUP: How now, Cutbeard? any cross?

CUT: O, no, sir, omnia bene. 'Twas never better on the hinges;
all's sure. I have so pleased him with a curate, that he's gone
to't almost with the delight he hopes for soon.

DAUP: What is he for a vicar?

CUT: One that has catch'd a cold, sir, and can scarce be heard six
inches off; as if he spoke out of a bulrush that were not pick'd,
or his throat were full of pith: a fine quick fellow, and an
excellent barber of prayers. I came to tell you, sir, that you
might omnem movere lapidem, as they say, be ready with your

DAUP: Gramercy, honest Cutbeard! be thereabouts with thy key,
to let us in.

CUT: I will not fail you, sir: ad manum.


TRUE: Well, I'll go watch my coaches.

CLER: Do; and we'll send Daw to you, if you meet him not.


MRS. OTT: Is master Truewit gone?

DAUP: Yes, lady, there is some unfortunate business fallen out.

MRS. OTT: So I adjudged by the physiognomy of the fellow that came
in; and I had a dream last night too of a new pageant, and my lady
mayoress, which is always very ominous to me. I told it my lady
Haughty t'other day; when her honour came hither to see some
China stuffs: and she expounded it out of Artemidorus, and I have
found it since very true. It has done me many affronts.

CLER: Your dream, lady?

MRS. OTT: Yes, sir, any thing I do but dream of the city. It
stain'd me a damasque table-cloth, cost me eighteen pound, at one
time; and burnt me a black satin gown, as I stood by the fire,
at my lady Centaure's chamber in the college, another time. A
third time, at the lord's masque, it dropt all my wire and my
ruff with wax candle, that I could not go up to the banquet. A
fourth time, as I was taking coach to go to Ware, to meet a
friend, it dash'd me a new suit all over (a crimson satin
doublet, and black velvet skirts) with a brewer's horse, that
I was fain to go in and shift me, and kept my chamber a leash
of days for the anguish of it.

DAUP: These were dire mischances, lady.

CLER: I would not dwell in the city, an 'twere so fatal to me.

MRS. OTT: Yes sir, but I do take advice of my doctor to dream
of it as little as I can.

DAUP: You do well, mistress Otter.

MRS. OTT: Will it please you to enter the house farther,

DAUP: And your favour, lady: but we stay to speak with a knight,
sir John Daw, who is here come. We shall follow you, lady.

MRS. OTT: At your own time, sir. It is my cousin sir Amorous his

DAUP: I know it, lady.

MRS. OTT: And mine together. But it is for his honour, and
therefore I take no name of it, more than of the place.

DAUP: You are a bounteous kinswoman.

MRS. OTT: Your servant, sir.


CLER [COMING FORWARD WITH DAW.]: Why, do not you know it, sir
John Daw?

DAW: No, I am a rook if I do.

CLER: I'll tell you then, she's married by this time. And, whereas
you were put in the head, that she was gone with sir Dauphine, I
assure you, sir Dauphine has been the noblest, honestest friend to
you, that ever gentleman of your quality could boast of. He has
discover'd the whole plot, and made your mistress so acknowledging,
and indeed so ashamed of her injury to you, that she desires you
to forgive her, and but grace her wedding with your presence
to-day--She is to be married to a very good fortune, she says, his
uncle, old Morose: and she will'd me in private to tell you, that
she shall be able to do you more favours, and with more security
now, than before.

DAW: Did she say so, i'faith?

CLER: Why, what do you think of me, sir John? ask sir Dauphine.

DAUP: Nay, I believe you.--Good sir Dauphine, did she desire me to
forgive her?

CLER: I assure you, sir John, she did.

DAW: Nay, then, I do with all my heart, and I'll be jovial.

CLER: Yes, for look you, sir, this was the injury to you. La-Foole
intended this feast to honour her bridal day, and made you the
property to invite the college ladies, and promise to bring her:
and then at the time she should have appear'd, as his friend, to
have given you the dor. Whereas now, Sir Dauphine has brought her
to a feeling of it, with this kind of satisfaction, that you shall
bring all the ladies to the place where she is, and be very
jovial; and there, she will have a dinner, which shall be in your
name: and so disappoint La-Foole, to make you good again, and, as
it were, a saver in the main.

DAW: As I am a knight, I honour her; and forgive her heartily.

CLER: About it then presently. Truewit is gone before to confront
the coaches, and to acquaint you with so much, if he meet you.
Join with him, and 'tis well.--
See; here comes your antagonist, but take you no notice, but be
very jovial.

LA-F: Are the ladies come, sir John Daw, and your mistress?
--Sir Dauphine! you are exceeding welcome, and honest master
Clerimont. Where's my cousin? did you see no collegiates, gentlemen?

DAUP: Collegiates! do you not hear, sir Amorous, how you are abus'd?

LA-F: How, sir!

CLER: Will you speak so kindly to sir John Daw, that has done you
such an affront?

LA-F: Wherein, gentlemen? let me be a suitor to you to know, I
beseech you!

CLER: Why, sir, his mistress is married to-day to sir Dauphine's
uncle, your cousin's neighbour, and he has diverted all the ladies,
and all your company thither, to frustrate your provision, and stick
a disgrace upon you. He was here now to have enticed us away from
you too: but we told him his own, I think.

LA-F: Has sir John Daw wrong'd me so inhumanly?

DAUP: He has done it, sir Amorous, most maliciously and
treacherously: but, if youll be ruled by us, you shall quit him,

LA-F: Good gentlemen, I'll make one, believe it. How, I pray?

DAUP: Marry sir, get me your pheasants, and your godwits, and your
best meat, and dish it in silver dishes of your cousin's presently,
and say nothing, but clap me a clean towel about you, like a sewer;
and bare-headed, march afore it with a good confidence, ('tis but
over the way, hard by,) and we'll second you, where you shall set
it on the board, and bid them welcome to't, which shall shew 'tis
yours, and disgrace his preparation utterly: and, for your cousin,
whereas she should be troubled here at home with care of making and
giving welcome, she shall transfer all that labour thither, and be
a principal guest herself, sit rank'd with the college-honours, and
be honour'd, and have her health drunk as often, as bare and as
loud as the best of them.

LA-F: I'll go tell her presently. It shall be done, that's


CLER: I thought he would not hear it out, but 'twould take him.

DAUP: Well, there be guests and meat now; how shall we do for

CLER: The smell of the venison, going through the street, will
invite one noise of fiddlers or other.

DAUP: I would it would call the trumpeters hither!

CLER: Faith, there is hope: they have intelligence of all feasts.
There's good correspondence betwixt them and the London cooks:
'tis twenty to one but we have them.

DAUP: 'Twill be a most solemn day for my uncle, and an excellent
fit of mirth for us.

CLER: Ay, if we can hold up the emulation betwixt Foole and Daw,
and never bring them to expostulate.

DAUP: Tut, flatter them both, as Truewit says, and you may take
their understandings in a purse-net. They'll believe themselves
to be just such men as we make them, neither more nor less. They
have nothing, not the use of their senses, but by tradition.


CLER: See! sir Amorous has his towel on already. Have you persuaded
your cousin?

LA-F: Yes, 'tis very feasible: she'll do any thing she says, rather
than the La-Fooles shall be disgraced.

DAUP: She is a noble kinswoman. It will be such a pestling device,
sir Amorous; it will pound all your enemy's practices to powder,
and blow him up with his own mine, his own train.

LA-F: Nay, we'll give fire, I warrant you.

CLER: But you must carry it privately, without any noise, and take
no notice by any means--


OTT: Gentlemen, my princess says you shall have all her silver
dishes, festinate: and she's gone to alter her tire a little,
and go with you--

CLER: And yourself too, captain Otter?

DAUP: By any means, sir.

OTT: Yes, sir, I do mean it: but I would entreat my cousin sir
Amorous, and you, gentlemen, to be suitors to my princess, that I
may carry my bull and my bear, as well as my horse.

CLER: That you shall do, captain Otter.

LA-F: My cousin will never consent, gentlemen.

DAUP: She must consent, sir Amorous, to reason.

LA-F: Why, she says they are no decorum among ladies.

OTT: But they are decora, and that's better, sir.

CLER: Ay, she must hear argument. Did not Pasiphae, who was a
queen, love a bull? and was not Calisto, the mother of Arcas,
turn'd into a bear, and made a star, mistress Ursula, in the

OTT: O lord! that I could have said as much! I will have these
stories painted in the Bear-garden, ex Ovidii metamorphosi.

DAUP: Where is your princess, captain? pray, be our leader.

OTT: That I shall, sir.

CLER: Make haste, good sir Amorous.


SCENE 3.2.



MOR: Sir, there is an angel for yourself, and a brace of angels
for your cold. Muse not at this manage of my bounty. It is fit we
should thank fortune, double to nature, for any benefit she
confers upon us; besides, it is your imperfection, but my solace.

PAR [SPEAKS AS HAVING A COLD.] I thank your worship; so is it
mine, now.

MOR: What says he, Cutbeard?

CUT: He says, praesto, sir, whensoever your worship needs him, he
can be ready with the like. He got this cold with sitting up late,
and singing catches with cloth-workers.

MOR: No more. I thank him.

PAR: God keep your worship, and give you much joy with your fair
spouse.--[COUGHS.] uh! uh! uh!

MOR: O, O! stay Cutbeard! let him give me five shillings of my
money back. As it is bounty to reward benefits, so is it equity
to mulct injuries. I will have it. What says he?

CUT: He cannot change it, sir.

MOR: It must be changed.

CUT [ASIDE TO PARSON.]: Cough again.

MOR: What says he?

CUT: He will cough out the rest, sir.

PAR: Uh, uh, uh!

MOR: Away, away with him! stop his mouth! away! I forgive it.--


EPI: Fie, master Morose, that you will use this violence to a man
of the church.

MOR: How!

EPI: It does not become your gravity, or breeding, as you pretend,
in court, to have offer'd this outrage on a waterman, or any more
boisterous creature, much less on a man of his civil coat.

MOR: You can speak then!

EPI: Yes, sir.

MOR: Speak out, I mean.

EPI: Ay, sir. Why, did you think you had married a statue, or a
motion, only? one of the French puppets, with the eyes turn'd with
a wire? or some innocent out of the hospital, that would stand
with her hands thus, and a plaise mouth, and look upon you?

MOR: O immodesty! a manifest woman! What, Cutbeard!

EPI: Nay, never quarrel with Cutbeard, sir; it is too late now. I
confess it doth bate somewhat of the modesty I had, when I writ
simply maid: but I hope, I shall make it a stock still competent
to the estate and dignity of your wife.

MOR: She can talk!

EPI: Yes, indeed, sir.


MOR: What sirrah! None of my knaves there? where is this impostor,


EPI: Speak to him, fellow, speak to him! I'll have none of this
coacted, unnatural dumbness in my house, in a family where I


MOR: She is my regent already! I have married a Penthesilea, a
Semiramis, sold my liberty to a distaff.


TRUE: Where's master Morose?

MOR: Is he come again! Lord have mercy upon me!

TRUE: I wish you all joy, mistress Epicoene, with your grave and
honourable match.

EPI: I return you the thanks, master Truewit, so friendly a wish

MOR: She has acquaintance, too!

TRUE: God save you, sir, and give you all contentment in your fair
choice, here! Before, I was the bird of night to you, the owl; but
now I am the messenger of peace, a dove, and bring you the glad
wishes of many friends to the celebration of this good hour.

MOR: What hour, sir?

TRUE: Your marriage hour, sir. I commend your resolution, that,
notwithstanding all the dangers I laid afore you, in the voice of
a night-crow, would yet go on, and be yourself. It shews you are
a man constant to your own ends, and upright to your purposes,
that would not be put off with left-handed cries.

MOR: How should you arrive at the knowledge of so much!

TRUE: Why, did you ever hope, sir, committing the secrecy of it to
a barber, that less then the whole town should know it? you might
as well have told it the conduit, or the bake-house, or the
infantry that follow the court, and with more security. Could
your gravity forget so old and noted a remnant, as lippis et
tonsoribus notum? Well, sir, forgive it yourself now, the fault,
and be communicable with your friends. Here will be three or four
fashionable ladies from the college to visit you presently, and
their train of minions and followers.

MOR: Bar my doors! bar my doors! Where are all my eaters? my
mouths now?--
Bar up my doors, you varlets!

EPI: He is a varlet that stirs to such an office. Let them stand
open. I would see him that dares move his eyes toward it. Shall I
have a barricado made against my friends, to be barr'd of any
pleasure they can bring in to me with their honourable


MOR: O Amazonian impudence!

TRUE: Nay, faith, in this, sir, she speaks but reason: and,
methinks, is more continent than you. Would you go to bed so
presently, sir, afore noon? a man of your head and hair should
owe more to that reverend ceremony, and not mount the marriage-bed
like a town-bull, or a mountain-goat; but stay the due season; and
ascend it then with religion and fear. Those delights are to be
steeped in the humour and silence of the night; and give the day
to other open pleasures, and jollities of feasting, of music, of
revels, of discourse: we'll have all, sir, that may make your
Hymen high and happy.

MOR: O, my torment, my torment!

TRUE: Nay, if you endure the first half hour, sir, so tediously,
and with this irksomness; what comfort or hope can this fair
gentlewoman make to herself hereafter, in the consideration of so
many years as are to come--

MOR: Of my affliction. Good sir, depart, and let her do it alone.

TRUE: I have done, sir.

MOR: That cursed barber.

TRUE: Yes, faith, a cursed wretch indeed, sir.

MOR: I have married his cittern, that's common to all men. Some
plague above the plague--

TRUE: All Egypt's ten plagues.

MOR: Revenge me on him!

TRUE: 'Tis very well, sir. If you laid on a curse or two more,
I'll assure you he'll bear them. As, that he may get the pox
with seeking to cure it, sir; or, that while he is curling another
man's hair, his own may drop off; or, for burning some male-bawd's
lock, he may have his brain beat out with the curling-iron.

MOR: No, let the wretch live wretched. May he get the itch, and his
shop so lousy, as no man dare come at him, nor he come at no man!

TRUE: Ay, and if he would swallow all his balls for pills, let not
them purge him.

MOR: Let his warming pan be ever cold.

TRUE: A perpetual frost underneath it, sir.

MOR: Let him never hope to see fire again.

TRUE: But in hell, sir.

MOR: His chairs be always empty, his scissors rust, and his combs
mould in their cases.

TRUE: Very dreadful that! And may he lose the invention, sir, of
carving lanterns in paper.

MOR: Let there be no bawd carted that year, to employ a bason of
his: but let him be glad to eat his sponge for bread.

TRUE: And drink lotium to it, and much good do him.

MOR: Or, for want of bread--

TRUE: Eat ear-wax, sir. I'll help you. Or, draw his own teeth,
and add them to the lute-string.

MOR: No, beat the old ones to powder, and make bread of them.

TRUE: Yes, make meal of the mill-stones.

MOR: May all the botches and burns that he has cured on others
break out upon him.

TRUE: And he now forget the cure of them in himself, sir: or, if
he do remember it, let him have scraped all his linen into lint
for't, and have not a rag left him to set up with.

MOR: Let him never set up again, but have the gout in his hands
for ever! Now, no more, sir.

TRUE: O, that last was too high set; you might go less with him,
i'faith, and be revenged enough: as, that he be never able to
new-paint his pole--

MOR: Good sir, no more, I forgot myself.

TRUE: Or, want credit to take up with a comb-maker--

MOR: No more, sir.

TRUE: Or, having broken his glass in a former despair, fall now
into a much greater, of ever getting another--

MOR: I beseech you, no more.

TRUE: Or, that he never be trusted with trimming of any but

MOR: Sir--

TRUE: Or, may he cut a collier's throat with his razor, by
chance-medley, and yet be hanged for't.

MOR: I will forgive him, rather than hear any more. I beseech you,


DAW: This way, madam.

MOR: O, the sea breaks in upon me! another flood! an inundation!
I shall be overwhelmed with noise. It beats already at my shores.
I feel an earthquake in my self for't.

DAW: 'Give you joy, mistress.

MOR: Has she servants too!

DAW: I have brought some ladies here to see and know you.
My lady Haughty--
this my lady Centaure--mistress Dol Mavis--mistress Trusty,
my lady Haughty's woman. Where's your husband? let's see him:
can he endure no noise? let me come to him.

MOR: What nomenclator is this!

TRUE: Sir John Daw, sir, your wife's servant, this.

MOR: A Daw, and her servant! O, 'tis decreed, 'tis decreed of me,
an she have such servants.

TRUE: Nay sir, you must kiss the ladies; you must not go away, now:
they come toward you to seek you out.

HAU: I'faith, master Morose, would you steal a marriage thus, in
the midst of so many friends, and not acquaint us? Well, I'll kiss
you, notwithstanding the justice of my quarrel: you shall give me
leave, mistress, to use a becoming familiarity with your husband.

EPI: Your ladyship does me an honour in it, to let me know he is
so worthy your favour: as you have done both him and me grace to
visit so unprepared a pair to entertain you.

MOR: Compliment! compliment!

EPI: But I must lay the burden of that upon my servant here.

HAU: It shall not need, mistress Morose, we will all bear, rather
than one shall be opprest.

MOR: I know it: and you will teach her the faculty, if she be to
learn it.


HAU: Is this the silent woman?

CEN: Nay, she has found her tongue since she was married, master
Truewit says.

HAU: O, master Truewit! 'save you. What kind of creature is your
bride here? she speaks, methinks!

TRUE: Yes, madam, believe it, she is a gentlewoman of very absolute
behaviour, and of a good race.

HAU: And Jack Daw told us she could not speak!

TRUE: So it was carried in plot, madam, to put her upon this old
fellow, by sir Dauphine, his nephew, and one or two more of us:
but she is a woman of an excellent assurance, and an extraordinary
happy wit and tongue. You shall see her make rare sport with Daw
ere night.

HAU: And he brought us to laugh at her!

TRUE: That falls out often, madam, that he that thinks himself
the master-wit, is the master-fool. I assure your ladyship, ye
cannot laugh at her.

HAU: No, we'll have her to the college: An she have wit, she
shall be one of us, shall she not Centaure? we'll make her a

CEN: Yes faith, madam, and mistress Mavis and she will set up a

TRUE: Believe it, madam, and mistress Mavis she will sustain her

MAV: I'll tell you that, when I have talk'd with her, and tried

HAU: Use her very civilly, Mavis.

MAV: So I will, madam.


MOR: Blessed minute! that they would whisper thus ever!


TRUE: In the mean time, madam, would but your ladyship help to vex
him a little: you know his disease, talk to him about the wedding
ceremonies, or call for your gloves, or--

HAU: Let me alone. Centaure, help me. Master bridegroom, where are

MOR: O, it was too miraculously good to last!


HAU: We see no ensigns of a wedding here; no character of a
bride-ale: where be our scarves and our gloves? I pray you, give
them us. Let us know your bride's colours, and yours at least.

CEN: Alas, madam, he has provided none.

MOR: Had I known your ladyship's painter, I would.

HAU: He has given it you, Centaure, i'faith. But do you hear, 
master Morose? a jest will not absolve you in this manner. You
that have suck'd the milk of the court, and from thence have
been brought up to the very strong meats and wine, of it; been
a courtier from the biggen to the night-cap, as we may say, and
you to offend in such a high point of ceremony as this, and let
your nuptials want all marks of solemnity! How much plate have
you lost to-day, (if you had but regarded your profit,) what
gifts, what friends, through your mere rusticity!

MOR: Madam--

HAU: Pardon me, sir, I must insinuate your errors to you; no
gloves? no garters? no scarves? no epithalamium? no masque?

DAW: Yes, madam, I'll make an epithalamium, I promise my mistress;
I have begun it already: will you ladyship hear it?

HAU: Ay, good Jack Daw.

MOR: Will it please your ladyship command a chamber, and be private
with your friend? you shall have your choice of rooms to retire
to after: my whole house is yours. I know it hath been your
ladyship's errand into the city at other times, however now you
have been unhappily diverted upon me: but I shall be loth to
break any honourable custom of your ladyship's. And therefore, good

EPI: Come, you are a rude bridegroom, to entertain ladies of
honour in this fashion.

CEN: He is a rude groom indeed.

TRUE: By that light you deserve to be grafted, and have your horns
reach from one side of the island, to the other. Do not mistake me,
sir; I but speak this to give the ladies some heart again, not
for any malice to you.

MOR: Is this your bravo, ladies?

TRUE: As God [shall] help me, if you utter such another word,
I'll take mistress bride in, and begin to you in a very sad cup;
do you see? Go to, know your friends, and such as love you.


CLER: By your leave, ladies. Do you want any music? I have brought
you variety of noises. Play, sirs, all of you.


MOR: O, a plot, a plot, a plot, a plot, upon me! this day I shall
be their anvil to work on, they will grate me asunder. 'Tis worse
then the noise of a saw.

CLER: No, they are hair, rosin, and guts. I can give you the

TRUE: Peace, boys!

CLER: Play! I say.

TRUE: Peace, rascals! You see who's your friend now, sir: take
courage, put on a martyr's resolution. Mock down all their
attemptings with patience: 'tis but a day, and I would suffer
heroically. Should an ass exceed me in fortitude? no. You betray
your infirmity with your hanging dull ears, and make them insult:
bear up bravely, and constantly.
--Look you here, sir, what honour is done you unexpected, by your
nephew; a wedding-dinner come, and a knight-sewer before it, for
the more reputation: and fine mistress Otter, your neighbour, in
the rump, or tail of it.

MOR: Is that Gorgon, that Medusa come! hide me, hide me.

TRUE: I warrant you, sir, she will not transform you. Look upon
her with a good courage. Pray you entertain her, and conduct your
guests in. No!--Mistress bride, will you entreat in the ladies?
your bride-groom is so shame-faced, here.

EPI: Will it please your ladyship, madam?

HAU: With the benefit of your company, mistress.

EPI: Servant, pray you perform your duties.

DAW: And glad to be commanded, mistress.

CEN: How like you her wit, Mavis?

MAV: Very prettily, absolutely well.

MRS. OTT: 'Tis my place.

MAV: You shall pardon me, mistress Otter.

MRS. OTT: Why, I am a collegiate.

MAV: But not in ordinary.

MRS. OTT: But I am.

MAV: We'll dispute that within.


CLER: Would this had lasted a little longer.

TRUE: And that they had sent for the heralds.
--Captain Otter! what news?

OTT: I have brought my bull, bear, and horse, in private, and
yonder are the trumpeters without, and the drum, gentlemen.


MOR: O, O, O!

OTT: And we will have a rouse in each of them, anon, for bold
Britons, i'faith.


MOR: O, O, O!

OMNES: Follow, follow, follow!

ACT 4. SCENE 4.1.



TRUE: Was there ever poor bridegroom so tormented? or man,

CLER: I have not read of the like in the chronicles of the land.

TRUE: Sure, he cannot but go to a place of rest, after all this

CLER: He may presume it, I think.

TRUE: The spitting, the coughing, the laughter, the neezing, the
farting, dancing, noise of the music, and her masculine and
loud commanding, and urging the whole family, makes him think he
has married a fury.

CLER: And she carries it up bravely.

TRUE: Ay, she takes any occasion to speak: that is the height on't.

CLER: And how soberly Dauphine labours to satisfy him, that it was
none of his plot!

TRUE: And has almost brought him to the faith, in the article.
Here he comes.
--Where is he now? what's become of him, Dauphine?

DAUP: O, hold me up a little, I shall go away in the jest else. He
has got on his whole nest of night-caps, and lock'd himself up in
the top of the house, as high as ever he can climb from the noise.
I peep'd in at a cranny, and saw him sitting over a cross-beam of
the roof, like him on the sadler's horse in Fleet-street, upright:
and he will sleep there.

CLER: But where are your collegiates?

DAUP: Withdrawn with the bride in private.

TRUE: O, they are instructing her in the college-grammar. If
she have grace with them, she knows all their secrets instantly.

CLER: Methinks the lady Haughty looks well to-day, for all my
dispraise of her in the morning. I think, I shall come about to
thee again, Truewit.

TRUE: Believe it, I told you right. Women ought to repair the
losses time and years have made in their features, with dressings.
And an intelligent woman, if she know by herself the least defect,
will be most curious to hide it: and it becomes her. If she be
short, let her sit much, lest, when she stands, she be thought to
sit. If she have an ill foot, let her wear her gown the longer,
and her shoe the thinner. If a fat hand, and scald nails, let her
carve the less, and act in gloves. If a sour breath, let her never
discourse fasting, and always talk at her distance. If she have
black and rugged teeth, let her offer the less at laughter,
especially if she laugh wide and open.

CLER: O, you shall have some women, when they laugh, you would
think they brayed, it is so rude, and--

TRUE: Ay, and others, that will stalk in their gait like an estrich,
and take huge strides. I cannot endure such a sight. I love measure
in the feet, and number in the voice: they are gentlenesses, that
oftentimes draw no less than the face.

DAUP: How camest thou to study these creatures so exactly? I would
thou would'st make me a proficient.

TRUE: Yes, but you must leave to live in your chamber, then, a
month together upon Amadis de Gaul, or Don Quixote, as you are
wont; and come abroad where the matter is frequent, to court, to
tiltings, public shows and feasts, to plays, and church sometimes:
thither they come to shew their new tires too, to see, and to be
seen. In these places a man shall find whom to love, whom to play
with, whom to touch once, whom to hold ever. The variety arrests
his judgment. A wench to please a man comes not down dropping
from the ceiling, as he lies on his back droning a tobacco pipe.
He must go where she is.

DAUP: Yes, and be never the nearer.

TRUE: Out, heretic! That diffidence makes thee worthy it should
be so.

CLER: He says true to you, Dauphine.

DAUP: Why?

TRUE: A man should not doubt to overcome any woman. Think he can
vanquish them, and he shall: for though they deny, their desire
is to be tempted. Penelope herself cannot hold out long. Ostend,
you saw, was taken at last. You must persever, and hold to your
purpose. They would solicit us, but that they are afraid.
Howsoever, they wish in their hearts we should solicit them.
Praise them, flatter them, you shall never want eloquence or
trust: even the chastest delight to feel themselves that way
rubb'd. With praises you must mix kisses too: if they take them,
they'll take more--though they strive, they would be overcome.

CLER: O, but a man must beware of force.

TRUE: It is to them an acceptable violence, and has oft-times the
place of the greatest courtesy. She that might have been forced,
and you let her go free without touching, though then she seem to
thank you, will ever hate you after; and glad in the face, is
assuredly sad at the heart.

CLER: But all women are not to be taken all ways.

TRUE: 'Tis true; no more than all birds, or all fishes. If you
appear learned to an ignorant wench, or jocund to a sad, or witty
to a foolish, why she presently begins to mistrust herself. You
must approach them in their own height, their own line: for the
contrary makes many, that fear to commit themselves to noble and
worthy fellows, run into the embraces of a rascal. If she love
wit, give verses, though you borrow them of a friend, or buy them,
to have good. If valour, talk of your sword, and be frequent in
the mention of quarrels, though you be staunch in fighting. If
activity, be seen on your barbary often, or leaping over stools,
for the credit of your back. If she love good clothes or dressing,
have your learned council about you every morning, your French
tailor, barber, linener, etc. Let your powder, your glass, and
your comb be your dearest acquaintance. Take more care for the
ornament of your head, than the safety: and wish the commonwealth
rather troubled, than a hair about you. That will take her. Then,
if she be covetous and craving, do you promise any thing, and
perform sparingly; so shall you keep her in appetite still. Seem
as you would give, but be like a barren field, that yields little,
or unlucky dice to foolish and hoping gamesters. Let your gifts
be slight and dainty, rather than precious. Let cunning be above
cost. Give cherries at time of year, or apricots; and say they
were sent you out of the country, though you bought them in
Cheapside. Admire her tires: like her in all fashions; compare her
in every habit to some deity; invent excellent dreams to flatter
her, and riddles; or, if she be a great one, perform always the
second parts to her: like what she likes, praise whom she praises,
and fail not to make the household and servants yours, yea the
whole family, and salute them by their names: ('tis but light cost
if you can purchase them so,) and make her physician your
pensioner, and her chief woman. Nor will it be out of your gain to
make love to her too, so she follow, not usher her lady's
pleasure. All blabbing is taken away, when she comes to be a part
of the crime.

DAUP: On what courtly lap hast thou late slept, to come forth so
sudden and absolute a courtling?

TRUE: Good faith, I should rather question you, that are so
harkening after these mysteries. I begin to suspect your
diligence, Dauphine. Speak, art thou in love in earnest?

DAUP: Yes, by my troth am I: 'twere ill dissembling before thee.

TRUE: With which of them, I prithee?

DAUP: With all the collegiates.

CLER: Out on thee! We'll keep you at home, believe it, in the
stable, if you be such a stallion.

TRUE: No; I like him well. Men should love wisely, and all women;
some one for the face, and let her please the eye; another for
the skin, and let her please the touch; a third for the voice, and
let her please the ear; and where the objects mix, let the senses
so too. Thou would'st think it strange, if I should make them all
in love with thee afore night!

DAUP: I would say, thou had'st the best philtre in the world, and
couldst do more than madam Medea, or doctor Foreman.

TRUE: If I do not, let me play the mountebank for my meat, while I
live, and the bawd for my drink.

DAUP: So be it, I say.


OTT: O Lord, gentlemen, how my knights and I have mist you here!

CLER: Why, captain, what service? what service?

OTT: To see me bring up my bull, bear, and horse to fight.

DAW: Yes, faith, the captain says we shall be his dogs to bait

DAUP: A good employment.

TRUE: Come on, let's see a course, then.

LA-F: I am afraid my cousin will be offended, if she come.

OTT: Be afraid of nothing. Gentlemen, I have placed the drum and
the trumpets, and one to give them the sign when you are ready.
Here's my bull for myself, and my bear for sir John Daw, and my
horse for sir Amorous. Now set your foot to mine, and yours to
his, and--

LA-F: Pray God my cousin come not.

OTT: Saint George, and saint Andrew, fear no cousins. Come,
sound, sound.
Et rauco strepuerunt cornua cantu.


TRUE: Well said, captain, i'faith: well fought at the bull.

CLER: Well held at the bear.

TRUE: Low, low! captain.

DAUP: O, the horse has kick'd off his dog already.

LA-F: I cannot drink it, as I am a knight.

TRUE: Ods so! off with his spurs, somebody.

LA-F: It goes against my conscience. My cousin will be angry with it.

DAW: I have done mine.

TRUE: You fought high and fair, sir John.

CLER: At the head.

DAUP: Like an excellent bear-dog.

CLER: You take no notice of the business, I hope?

DAW: Not a word, sir; you see we are jovial.

OTT: Sir Amorous, you must not equivocate.
It must be pull'd down, for all my cousin.

CLER: 'Sfoot, if you take not your drink, they will think you are
discontented with something: you'll betray all, if you take the
least notice.

LA-F: Not I; I'll both drink and talk then.

OTT: You must pull the horse on his knees, sir Amorous: fear no
cousins. Jacta est alea.

TRUE: O, now he's in his vein, and bold. The least hint given him
of his wife now, will make him rail desperately.

CLER: Speak to him of her.

TRUE: Do you, and I will fetch her to the hearing of it.


DAUP: Captain He-Otter, your She-Otter is coming, your wife.

OTT: Wife! buz! titivilitium! There's no such thing in nature.
I confess, gentlemen, I have a cook, a laundress, a house-drudge,
that serves my necessary turns, and goes under that title: but
he's an ass that will be so uxorious to tie his affections to one
circle. Come, the name dulls appetite. Here, replenish again:
another bout.
Wives are nasty sluttish animalls.

DAUP: O, captain.

OTT: As ever the earth bare, tribus verbis. Where's master

DAW: He's slipt aside, sir.

CLER: But you must drink, and be jovial.

DAW: Yes, give it me.

LA-F: And me too.

DAW: Let's be jovial.

LA-F: As jovial as you will.

OTT: Agreed. Now you shall have the bear, cousin, and sir John
Daw the horse, and I will have the bull still. Sound, Tritons of
the Thames.
Nunc est bibendum, nunc pede libero--

MOR [ABOVE]: Villains, murderers, sons of the earth, and traitors,
what do you there?

CLER: O, now the trumpets have waked him, we shall have his

OTT: A wife is a scurvy clogdogdo, an unlucky thing, a very
foresaid bear-whelp, without any good fashion or breeding: mala


DAUP: Why did you marry one then, captain?

OTT: A pox!--I married with six thousand pound, I. I was in love
with that. I have not kissed my Fury these forty weeks.

CLER: The more to blame you, captain.

TRUE: Nay, mistress Otter, hear him a little first.

OTT: She has a breath worse than my grandmother's, profecto.

MRS. OTT: O treacherous liar! kiss me, sweet master Truewit, and
prove him a slandering knave.

TRUE: I will rather believe you, lady.

OTT: And she has a peruke that's like a pound of hemp, made up in

MRS. OTT: O viper, mandrake!

OTT: A most vile face! and yet she spends me forty pound a year
in mercury and hogs-bones. All her teeth were made in the
Black-Friars, both her eyebrows in the Strand, and her hair in
Silver-street. Every part of the town owns a piece of her.

MRS. OTT [COMES FORWARD.]: I cannot hold.

OTT: She takes herself asunder still when she goes to bed, into
some twenty boxes; and about next day noon is put together again,
like a great German clock: and so comes forth, and rings a tedious
larum to the whole house, and then is quiet again for an hour,
but for her quarters. Have you done me right, gentlemen?

MRS. OTT [FALLS UPON HIM, AND BEATS HIM.]: No, sir, I will do you
right with my quarters, with my quarters.

OTT: O, hold, good princess.

TRUE: Sound, sound!


CLER: A battle, a battle!

MRS. OTT: You notorious stinkardly bearward, does my breath smell?

OTT: Under correction, dear princess: look to my bear, and my
horse, gentlemen.

MRS. OTT: Do I want teeth, and eyebrows, thou bull-dog?

TRUE: Sound, sound still.


OTT: No, I protest, under correction--

MRS. OTT: Ay, now you are under correction, you protest: but you
did not protest before correction, sir. Thou Judas, to offer to
betray thy princess! I will make thee an example--


MOR: I will have no such examples in my house, lady Otter.

MRS. OTT: Ah!--


OTT: Mistress Mary Ambree, your examples are dangerous. Rogues,
hell-hounds, Stentors! out of my doors, you sons of noise and
tumult, begot on an ill May-day, or when the galley-foist is
afloat to Westminster!
A trumpeter could not be conceived but then!

DAUP: What ails you, sir?

MOR: They have rent my roof, walls, and all my windows asunder,
with their brazen throats.

TRUE: Best follow him, Dauphine.

DAUP: So I will.

CLER: Where's Daw and La-Foole?

OTT: They are both run away, sir. Good gentlemen, help to pacify
my princess, and speak to the great ladies for me. Now must I go
lie with the bears this fortnight, and keep out of the way, till
my peace be made, for this scandal she has taken. Did you not see
my bull-head, gentlemen?

CLER: Is't not on, captain?

TRUE: No; but he may make a new one, by that is on.

OTT: O, here it is. An you come over, gentlemen, and ask for Tom
Otter, we'll go down to Ratcliff, and have a course i'faith,
for all these disasters. There is bona spes left.

TRUE: Away, captain, get off while you are well.


CLER: I am glad we are rid of him.

TRUE: You had never been, unless we had put his wife upon him.
His humour is as tedious at last, as it was ridiculous at first.


SCENE 4.2.



HAU: We wonder'd why you shriek'd so, mistress Otter?

MRS. OTT: O lord, madam, he came down with a huge long naked
weapon in both his hands, and look'd so dreadfully! sure he's
beside himself.

HAU: Why, what made you there, mistress Otter?

MRS. OTT: Alas, mistress Mavis, I was chastising my subject,
and thought nothing of him.

DAW: Faith, mistress, you must do so too: learn to chastise.
Mistress Otter corrects her husband so, he dares not speak but
under correction.

LA-F: And with his hat off to her: 'twould do you good to see.

HAU: In sadness, 'tis good and mature counsel: practise it,
Morose. I'll call you Morose still now, as I call Centaure and
Mavis; we four will be all one.

CEN: And you will come to the college, and live with us?

HAU: Make him give milk and honey.

MAV: Look how you manage him at first, you shall have him ever

CEN: Let him allow you your coach, and four horses, your woman,
your chamber-maid, your page, your gentleman-usher, your French
cook, and four grooms.

HAU: And go with us to Bedlam, to the china-houses, and to the

CEN: It will open the gate to your fame.

HAU: Here's Centaure has immortalised herself, with taming of her
wild male.

MAV: Ay, she has done the miracle of the kingdom.


EPI: But, ladies, do you count it lawful to have such plurality
of servants, and do them all graces?

HAU: Why not? why should women deny their favours to men? are
they the poorer or the worse?

DAW: Is the Thames the less for the dyer's water, mistress?

LA-F: Or a torch for lighting many torches?

TRUE: Well said, La-Foole; what a new one he has got!

CEN: They are empty losses women fear in this kind.

HAU: Besides, ladies should be mindful of the approach of age,
and let no time want his due use. The best of our days pass

MAV: We are rivers, that cannot be call'd back, madam: she that
now excludes her lovers, may live to lie a forsaken beldame, in
a frozen bed.

CEN: 'Tis true, Mavis: and who will wait on us to coach then?
or write, or tell us the news then, make anagrams of our names,
and invite us to the Cockpit, and kiss our hands all the play-time,
and draw their weapons for our honours?

HAU: Not one.

DAW: Nay, my mistress is not altogether unintelligent of these
things; here be in presence have tasted of her favours.

CLER: What a neighing hobby-horse is this!

EPI: But not with intent to boast them again, servant. And have
you those excellent receipts, madam, to keep yourselves from
bearing of children?

HAU: O yes, Morose: how should we maintain our youth and beauty
else? Many births of a woman make her old, as many crops make the
earth barren.


MOR: O my cursed angel, that instructed me to this fate!

DAUP: Why, sir?

MOR: That I should be seduced by so foolish a devil as a barber
will make!

DAUP: I would I had been worthy, sir, to have partaken your
counsel; you should never have trusted it to such a minister.

MOR: Would I could redeem it with the loss of an eye, nephew, a
hand, or any other member.

DAUP: Marry, God forbid, sir, that you should geld yourself, to
anger your wife.

MOR: So it would rid me of her! and, that I did supererogatory
penance in a belfry, at Westminster-hall, in the Cock-pit, at the
fall of a stag; the Tower-wharf (what place is there else?)--
London-bridge, Paris-garden, Billinsgate, when the noises are at
their height, and loudest. Nay, I would sit out a play, that were
nothing but fights at sea, drum, trumpet, and target.

DAUP: I hope there shall be no such need, sir. Take patience, good
uncle. This is but a day, and 'tis well worn too now.

MOR: O, 'twill be so for ever, nephew, I foresee it, for ever.
Strife and tumult are the dowry that comes with a wife.

TRUE: I told you so, sir, and you would not believe me.

MOR: Alas, do not rub those wounds, master Truewit, to blood again:
'twas my negligence. Add not affliction to affliction. I have
perceived the effect of it, too late, in madam Otter.

EPI: How do you, sir?

MOR: Did you ever hear a more unnecessary question? as if she did
not see! Why, I do as you see, empress, empress.

EPI: You are not well, sir; you look very ill; something has
distemper'd you.

MOR: O horrible, monstrous impertinencies! would not one of these
have served, do you think, sir? would not one of these have

TRUE: Yes, sir, but these are but notes of female kindness, sir;
certain tokens that she has a voice, sir.

MOR: O, is it so? Come, an't be no otherwise--What say you?

EPI: How do you feel yourself, sir?

MOR: Again that!

TRUE: Nay, look you, sir: you would be friends with your wife upon
unconscionable terms; her silence--

EPI: They say you are run mad, sir.

MOR: Not for love, I assure you, of you; do you see?

EPI: O lord, gentlemen! lay hold on him, for God's sake. What
shall I do? who's his physician, can you tell, that knows the
state of his body best, that I might send for him? Good sir,
speak; I'll send for one of my doctors else.

MOR: What, to poison me, that I might die intestate, and leave
you possest of all?

EPI: Lord, how idly he talks, and how his eyes sparkle! he looks
green about the temples! do you see what blue spots he has?

TRUE: Ay, 'tis melancholy.

EPI: Gentlemen, for Heaven's sake, counsel me. Ladies;--servant,
you have read Pliny and Paracelsus; ne'er a word now to comfort a
poor gentlewoman? Ay me, what fortune had I, to marry a distracted

DAW: I will tell you, mistress--

TRUE: How rarely she holds it up!

MOR: What mean you, gentlemen?

EPI: What will you tell me, servant?

DAW: The disease in Greek is called mania, in Latin insania,
furor, vel ecstasis melancholica, that is, egressio, when a
man ex melancholico evadit fanaticus.

MOR: Shall I have a lecture read upon me alive?

DAW: But he may be but phreneticus yet, mistress? and phrenetis
is only delirium, or so.

EPI: Ay, that is for the disease, servant: but what is this to
the cure? we are sure enough of the disease.

MOR: Let me go.

TRUE: Why, we'll entreat her to hold her peace, sir.

MOR: O no, labour not to stop her. She is like a conduit-pipe,
that will gush out with more force when she opens again.

HAU: I will tell you, Morose, you must talk divinity to him
altogether, or moral philosophy.

LA-F: Ay, and there's an excellent book of moral philosophy,
madam, of Raynard the fox, and all the beasts, called Doni's

CEN: There is, indeed, sir Amorous La-Foole.

MOR: O misery!

LA-F: I have read it, my lady Centaure, all over, to my cousin,

MRS. OTT: Ay, and 'tis a very good book as any is, of the moderns.

DAW: Tut, he must have Seneca read to him, and Plutarch, and the
ancients; the moderns are not for this disease.

CLER: Why, you discommended them too, to-day, sir John.

DAW: Ay, in some cases: but in these they are best, and Aristotle's

MAV: Say you so sir John? I think you are decived: you took it upon

HAU: Where's Trusty, my woman? I'll end this difference. I prithee,
Otter, call her. Her father and mother were both mad, when they put
her to me.

MOR: I think so. Nay, gentlemen, I am tame. This is but an exercise,
I know, a marriage ceremony, which I must endure.

HAU: And one of them, I know not which, was cur'd with the Sick
Man's Salve; and the other with Green's Groat's-worth of Wit.

TRUE: A very cheap cure, madam.


HAU: Ay, 'tis very feasible.

MRS. OTT: My lady call'd for you, mistress Trusty: you must decide a

HAU: O, Trusty, which was it you said, your father, or your mother,
that was cured with the Sick Man's Salve?

TRUS: My mother, madam, with the Salve.

TRUE: Then it was the sick woman's salve?

TRUS: And my father with the Groat's-worth of Wit. But there was
other means used: we had a preacher that would preach folk asleep
still; and so they were prescribed to go to church, by an old woman
that was their physician, thrice a week--

EPI: To sleep?

TRUS: Yes, forsooth: and every night they read themselves asleep on
those books.

EPI: Good faith, it stands with great reason. I would I knew where
to procure those books.

MOR: Oh!

LA-F: I can help you with one of them, mistress Morose, the
Groat's-worth of Wit.

EPI: But I shall disfurnish you, sir Amorous: can you spare it?

LA-F: O, yes, for a week, or so; I'll read it myself to him.

EPI: No, I must do that, sir: that must be my office.

MOR: Oh, oh!

EPI: Sure he would do well enough, if he could sleep.

MOR: No, I should do well enough, if you could sleep. Have I no
friend that will make her drunk? or give her a little laudanum?
or opium?

TRUE: Why, sir, she talks ten times worse in her sleep.

MOR: How!

CLER: Do you not know that, sir? never ceases all night.

TRUE: And snores like a porpoise.

MOR: O, redeem me, fate; redeem me, fate! For how many causes may
a man be divorced, nephew?

DAUP: I know not, truly, sir.

TRUE: Some divine must resolve you in that, sir, or canon-lawyer.

MOR: I will not rest, I will not think of any other hope or comfort,
till I know.


CLER: Alas, poor man!

TRUE: You'll make him mad indeed, ladies, if you pursue this.

HAU: No, we'll let him breathe now, a quarter of an hour or so.

CLER: By my faith, a large truce!

HAU: Is that his keeper, that is gone with him?

DAW: It is his nephew, madam.

LA-F: Sir Dauphine Eugenie.

HAU: He looks like a very pitiful knight--

DAW: As can be. This marriage has put him out of all.

LA-F: He has not a penny in his purse, madam.

DAW: He is ready to cry all this day.

LA-F: A very shark; he set me in the nick t'other night at

TRUE: How these swabbers talk!

CLER: Ay, Otter's wine has swell'd their humours above a spring-tide.

HAU: Good Morose, let us go in again. I like your couches exceeding
well; we will go lie and talk there.


EPI [FOLLOWING THEM.]: I wait on you, madam.

TRUE [STOPPING HER.]: 'Slight, I will have them as silent as
signs, and their post too, ere I have done. Do you hear, lady-bride?
I pray thee now, as thou art a noble wench, continue this discourse
of Dauphine within; but praise him exceedingly: magnify him with all
the height of affection thou canst;--I have some purpose in't: and
but beat off these two rooks, Jack Daw and his fellow, with any
discontentment, hither, and I'll honour thee for ever.

EPI: I was about it here. It angered me to the soul, to hear them
begin to talk so malepert.

TRUE: Pray thee perform it, and thou winn'st me an idolater to
thee everlasting.

EPI: Will you go in and hear me do't?

TRUE: No, I'll stay here. Drive them out of your company, 'tis all
I ask; which cannot be any way better done, than by extolling
Dauphine, whom they have so slighted.

EPI: I warrant you; you shall expect one of them presently.


CLER: What a cast of kestrils are these, to hawk after ladies,

TRUE: Ay, and strike at such an eagle as Dauphine.

CLER: He will be mad when we tell him. Here he comes.


CLER: O sir, you are welcome.

TRUE: Where's thine uncle?

DAUP: Run out of doors in his night-caps, to talk with a casuist
about his divorce. It works admirably.

TRUE: Thou wouldst have said so, if thou hadst been here! The
ladies have laugh'd at thee most comically, since thou went'st,

CLER: And ask'd, if thou wert thine uncle's keeper.

TRUE: And the brace of baboons answer'd, Yes; and said thou wert
a pitiful poor fellow, and didst live upon posts: and hadst
nothing but three suits of apparel, and some few benevolences that
lords gave thee to fool to them, and swagger.

DAUP: Let me not live, I will beat them: I'll bind them both to
grand-madam's bed-posts, and have them baited with monkies.

TRUE: Thou shalt not need, they shall be beaten to thy hand,
Dauphine. I have an execution to serve upon them, I warrant thee,
shall serve; trust my plot.

DAUP: Ay, you have many plots! so you had one to make all the
wenches in love with me.

TRUE: Why, if I do not yet afore night, as near as 'tis; and
that they do not every one invite thee, and be ready to scratch
for thee, take the mortgage of my wit.

CLER: 'Fore God, I'll be his witness thou shalt have it,
Dauphine: thou shalt be his fool for ever, if thou doest not.

TRUE: Agreed. Perhaps 'twill be the better estate. Do you observe
this gallery, or rather lobby, indeed? Here are a couple of
studies, at each end one: here will I act such a tragi-comedy
between the Guelphs and the Ghibellines, Daw and La-Foole--which
of them comes out first, will I seize on:--you two shall be the
chorus behind the arras, and whip out between the acts and
speak--If I do not make them keep the peace for this remnant of
the day, if not of the year, I have failed once--I hear Daw
coming: hide,
and do not laugh, for God's sake.


DAW: Which is the way into the garden trow?

TRUE: O, Jack Daw! I am glad I have met with you. In good faith,
I must have this matter go no further between you. I must have it
taken up.

DAW: What matter, sir? between whom?

TRUE: Come, you disguise it: sir Amorous and you. If you love me,
Jack, you shall make use of your philosophy now, for this once,
and deliver me your sword. This is not the wedding the Centaurs
were at, though there be a she one here.
The bride has entreated me I will see no blood shed at her bridal,
you saw her whisper me erewhile.

DAW: As I hope to finish Tacitus, I intend no murder.

TRUE: Do you not wait for sir Amorous?

DAW: Not I, by my knighthood.

TRUE: And your scholarship too?

DAW: And my scholarship too.

TRUE: Go to, then I return you your sword, and ask you mercy; but
put it not up, for you will be assaulted. I understood that you
had apprehended it, and walked here to brave him: and that you
had held your life contemptible, in regard of your honour.

DAW: No, no; no such thing, I assure you. He and I parted now,
as good friends as could be.

TRUE: Trust not you to that visor. I saw him since dinner with
another face: I have known many men in my time vex'd with losses,
with deaths, and with abuses; but so offended a wight as sir
Amorous, did I never see, or read of. For taking away his guests,
sir, to-day, that's the cause: and he declares it behind your back
with such threatenings and contempts--He said to Dauphine, you
were the arrant'st ass--

DAW: Ay, he may say his pleasure.

TRUE: And swears you are so protested a coward, that he knows you
will never do him any manly or single right, and therefore he will
take his course.

DAW: I'll give him any satisfaction, sir--but fighting.

TRUE: Ay, sir: but who knows what satisfaction he'll take? blood
he thirsts for, and blood he will have: and whereabouts on you he
will have it, who knows but himself?

DAW: I pray you, master Truewit, be you a mediator.

TRUE: Well, sir, conceal yourself then in this study till I
Nay, you must be content to be lock'd in: for, for mine own
reputation, I would not have you seen to receive a public
disgrace, while I have the matter in managing. Ods so, here he
comes; keep your breath close, that he do not hear you sigh.
In good faith, sir Amorous, he is not this way; I pray you be
merciful, do not murder him; he is a Christian, as good as you:
you are arm'd as if you sought revenge on all his race. Good
Dauphine, get him away from this place. I never knew a man's
choler so high, but he would speak to his friends, he would hear
reason.--Jack Daw, Jack! asleep!

DAW [within]: Is he gone, master Truewit?

TRUE: Ay; did you hear him?

DAW: O lord! yes.

TRUE: What a quick ear fear has!

DAW [COMES OUT OF THE CLOSET.]: But is he so arm'd, as you say?

TRUE: Arm'd? did you ever see a fellow set out to take possession?

DAW: Ay, sir.

TRUE: That may give you some light to conceive of him: but 'tis
nothing to the principal. Some false brother in the house has
furnish'd him strangely; or, if it were out of the house, it was
Tom Otter.

DAW: Indeed he's a captain, and his wife is his kinswoman.

TRUE: He has got some body's old two-hand sword, to mow you off
at the knees; and that sword hath spawn'd such a dagger!--But
then he is so hung with pikes, halberds, petronels, calivers and
muskets, that he looks like a justice of peace's hall: a man of
two thousand a-year, is not cess'd at so many weapons as he has on.
There was never fencer challenged at so many several foils. You
would think he meant to murder all Saint Pulchre parish. If he
could but victual himself for half a year in his breeches, he is
sufficiently arm'd to over-run a country.

DAW: Good lord! what means he, sir? I pray you, master Truewit, be
you a mediator.

TRUE: Well, I 'll try if he will be appeased with a leg or an arm;
if not you must die once.

DAW: I would be loth to lose my right arm, for writing madrigals.

TRUE: Why, if he will be satisfied with a thumb or a little finger,
all's one to me. You must think, I will do my best.


DAW: Good sir, do.


CLER: What hast thou done?

TRUE: He will let me do nothing, he does all afore; he offers
his left arm.

CLER: His left wing for a Jack Daw.

DAUP: Take it, by all means.

TRUE: How! maim a man for ever, for a jest? What a conscience hast

DAUP: 'Tis no loss to him; he has no employment for his arms, but
to eat spoon-meat. Beside, as good maim his body as his reputation.

TRUE: He is a scholar, and a wit, and yet he does not think so.
But he loses no reputation with us; for we all resolved him an ass
before. To your places again.

CLER: I pray thee, let me be in at the other a little.

TRUE: Look, you'll spoil all: these be ever your tricks.

CLER: No, but I could hit of some things that thou wilt miss, and
thou wilt say are good ones.

TRUE: I warrant you. I pray forbear, I will leave it off, else.

DAUP: Come away, Clerimont.



TRUE: Sir Amorous!

LA-F: Master Truewit.

TRUE: Whither were you going?

LA-F: Down into the court to make water.

TRUE: By no means, sir; you shall rather tempt your breeches.

LA-F: Why, sir?

TRUE: Enter here, if you love your life.


LA-F: Why? why?

TRUE: Question till you throat be cut, do: dally till the enraged
soul find you.

LA-F: Who is that?

TRUE: Daw it is: will you in?

LA-F: Ay, ay, I will in: what's the matter?

TRUE: Nay, if he had been cool enough to tell us that, there had
been some hope to atone you, but he seems so implacably enraged!

LA-F: 'Slight, let him rage! I'll hide myself.

TRUE: Do, good sir. But what have you done to him within, that
should provoke him thus? You have broke some jest upon him, afore
the ladies.

LA-F: Not I, never in my life, broke jest upon any man. The bride
was praising sir Dauphine, and he went away in snuff, and I
followed him, unless he took offence at me in his drink erewhile,
that I would not pledge all the horse full.

TRUE: By my faith, and that may be, you remember well: but he walks
the round up and down, through every room o' the house, with a
towel in his hand, crying, Where's La-Foole? Who saw La-Foole?
and when Dauphine and I demanded the cause, we can force no
answer from him, but--O revenge, how sweet art thou! I will
strangle him in this towel--which leads us to conjecture that the
main cause of his fury is, for bringing your meat to-day, with a
towel about you, to his discredit.

LA-F: Like enough. Why, if he be angry for that, I'll stay here
till his anger be blown over.

TRUE: A good becoming resolution, sir; if you can put it on o'
the sudden.

LA-F: Yes, I can put it on: or, I'll away into the country

TRUE: How will you get out of the house, sir? he knows you are in
the house, and he will watch you this se'ennight, but he'll have
you. He'll outwait a serjeant for you.

LA-F: Why, then I'll stay here.

TRUE: You must think how to victual yourself in time then.

LA-F: Why, sweet master Truewit, will you entreat my cousin Otter
to send me a cold venison pasty, a bottle or two of wine, and a

TRUE: A stool were better, sir, of sir Ajax his invention.

LA-F: Ay, that will be better, indeed; and a pallet to lie on.

TRUE: O, I would not advise you to sleep by any means.

LA-F: Would you not, sir? why, then I will not.

TRUE: Yet, there's another fear--

LA-F: Is there! what is't?

TRUE: No, he cannot break open this door with his foot, sure.

LA-F: I'll set my back against it, sir. I have a good back.

TRUE: But then if he should batter.

LA-F: Batter! if he dare, I'll have an action of battery against

TRUE: Cast you the worst. He has sent for powder already, and what
he will do with it, no man knows: perhaps blow up the corner of
the house where he suspects you are. Here he comes; in quickly.
I protest, sir John Daw, he is not this way: what will you do?
before God, you shall hang no petard here. I'll die rather. Will
you not take my word? I never knew one but would be satisfied.--
Sir Amorous,
there's no standing out: He has made a petard of an old brass
pot, to force your door. Think upon some satisfaction, or terms
to offer him.

LA-F [WITHIN.]: Sir, I will give him any satisfaction: I dare
give any terms.

TRUE: You'll leave it to me, then?

LA-F: Ay, sir. I'll stand to any conditions.

think you, sirs? were't not a difficult thing to determine
which of these two fear'd most.

CLER: Yes, but this fears the bravest: the other a whiniling
dastard, Jack Daw! But La-Foole, a brave heroic coward! and is
afraid in a great look and a stout accent; I like him rarely.

TRUE: Had it not been pity these two should have been concealed?

CLER: Shall I make a motion?

TRUE: Briefly: For I must strike while 'tis hot.

CLER: Shall I go fetch the ladies to the catastrophe?

TRUE: Umph! ay, by my troth.

DAUP: By no mortal means. Let them continue in the state of
ignorance, and err still; think them wits and fine fellows, as
they have done. 'Twere sin to reform them.

TRUE: Well, I will have them fetch'd, now I think on't, for a
private purpose of mine: do, Clerimont, fetch them, and discourse
to them all that's past, and bring them into the gallery here.

DAUP: This is thy extreme vanity, now: thou think'st thou wert
undone, if every jest thou mak'st were not publish'd.

TRUE: Thou shalt see how unjust thou art presently. Clerimont, say
it was Dauphine's plot.
Trust me not, if the whole drift be not for thy good. There is a
carpet in the next room, put it on, with this scarf over thy face,
and a cushion on thy head, and be ready when I call Amorous.
John Daw!

DAW: What good news, sir?

TRUE: Faith, I have followed and argued with him hard for you. I
told him you were a knight, and a scholar, and that you knew
fortitude did consist magis patiendo quam faciendo, magis ferendo
quam feriendo.

DAW: It doth so indeed, sir.

TRUE: And that you would suffer, I told him: so at first he
demanded by my troth, in my conceit, too much.

DAW: What was it, sir.

TRUE: Your upper lip, and six of your fore-teeth.

DAW: 'Twas unreasonable.

TRUE: Nay, I told him plainly, you could not spare them all.
So after long argument pro et con as you know, I brought him
down to your two butter-teeth, and them he would have.

DAW: O, did you so? Why, he shall have them.

TRUE: But he shall not, sir, by your leave. The conclusion is this,
sir: because you shall be very good friends hereafter, and this
never to be remembered or upbraided; besides, that he may not
boast he has done any such thing to you in his own person: he is
to come here in disguise, give you five kicks in private, sir, take
your sword from you, and lock you up in that study during pleasure:
which will be but a little while, we'll get it released presently.

DAW: Five kicks! he shall have six, sir, to be friends.

TRUE: Believe me, you shall not over-shoot yourself, to send him
that word by me.

DAW: Deliver it, sir: he shall have it with all my heart, to be

TRUE: Friends! Nay, an he should not be so, and heartily too, upon
these terms, he shall have me to enemy while I live. Come, sir, bear
it bravely.

DAW: O lord, sir, 'tis nothing.

TRUE: True: what's six kicks to a man that reads Seneca?

DAW: I have had a hundred, sir.

TRUE: Sir Amorous!
No speaking one to another, or rehearsing old matters.

DAW [AS DAUPHINE KICKS HIM.]: One, two, three, four, five. I
protest, sir Amorous, you shall have six.

TRUE: Nay, I told you, you should not talk. Come give him six,
an he will needs.
--Your sword.
Now return to your safe custody: you shall presently meet
afore the ladies, and be the dearest friends one to another.
--Give me the scarf now, thou shalt beat the other bare-faced.
Stand by:
--Sir Amorous!

LA-F: What's here? A sword?

TRUE: I cannot help it, without I should take the quarrel upon
myself. Here he has sent you his sword--

LA-F: I will receive none on't.

TRUE: And he wills you to fasten it against a wall, and break
your head in some few several places against the hilts.

LA-F: I will not: tell him roundly. I cannot endure to shed my
own blood.

TRUE: Will you not?

LA-F: No. I'll beat it against a fair flat wall, if that will
satisfy him: if not, he shall beat it himself, for Amorous.

TRUE: Why, this is strange starting off, when a man undertakes
for you! I offer'd him another condition; will you stand to that?

LA-F: Ay, what is't.

TRUE: That you will be beaten in private.

LA-F: Yes, I am content, at the blunt.


TRUE: Then you must submit yourself to be hoodwinked in this
scarf, and be led to him, where he will take your sword from
you, and make you bear a blow over the mouth, gules, and tweaks
by the nose, sans nombre.

LA-F: I am content. But why must I be blinded?

TRUE: That's for your good, sir: because, if he should grow
insolent upon this, and publish it hereafter to your disgrace,
(which I hope he will not do,) you might swear safely, and
protest, he never beat you, to your knowledge.

LA-F: O, I conceive.

TRUE: I do not doubt but you will be perfect good friends upon't,
and not dare to utter an ill thought one of another in future.

LA-F: Not I, as God help me, of him.

TRUE: Nor he of you, sir. If he should
--Come, sir.
--All hid, sir John.


LA-F: O, sir John, sir John! Oh, o--o--o--o--o--Oh--

TRUE: Good, sir John, leave tweaking, you'll blow his nose off.
'Tis sir John's pleasure, you should retire into the study.
--Why, now you are friends. All bitterness between you, I hope,
is buried; you shall come forth by and by, Damon and Pythias
upon't, and embrace with all the rankness of friendship that can
be. I trust, we shall have them tamer in their language hereafter.
Dauphine, I worship thee.--Gods will the ladies have surprised us!


HAU: Centaure, how our judgments were imposed on by these
adulterate knights!

Nay, madam, Mavis was more deceived than we, 'twas her
commendation utter'd them in the college.

MAV: I commended but their wits, madam, and their braveries.
I never look'd toward their valours.

HAU: Sir Dauphine is valiant, and a wit too, it seems.

MAV: And a bravery too.

HAU: Was this his project?

MRS. OTT: So master Clerimont intimates, madam.

HAU: Good Morose, when you come to the college, will you bring
him with you? he seems a very perfect gentleman.

EPI: He is so, madam, believe it.

CEN: But when will you come, Morose?

EPI: Three or four days hence, madam, when I have got me a coach
and horses.

HAU: No, to-morrow, good Morose; Centaure shall send you her coach.

MAV: Yes faith, do, and bring sir Dauphine with you.

HAU: She has promised that, Mavis.

MAV: He is a very worthy gentleman in his exteriors, madam.

HAU: Ay, he shews he is judicial in his clothes.

CEN: And yet not so superlatively neat as some, madam, that have
their faces set in a brake.

HAU: Ay, and have every hair in form!

MAV: That wear purer linen then ourselves, and profess more
neatness than the French hermaphrodite!

EPI: Ay, ladies, they, what they tell one of us, have told a
thousand; and are the only thieves of our fame: that think to
take us with that perfume, or with that lace, and laugh at us
unconscionably when they have done.

HAU: But, sir Dauphine's carelessness becomes him.

CEN: I could love a man for such a nose.

MAV: Or such a leg!

CEN: He has an exceeding good eye, madam.

MAV: And a very good lock.

CEN: Good Morose, bring him to my chamber first.

MRS. OTT: Please your honours to meet at my house, madam.

TRUE: See how they eye thee, man! they are taken, I warrant thee.


HAU: You have unbraced our brace of knights here, master Truewit.

TRUE: Not I, madam; it was sir Dauphine's ingine: who, if he have
disfurnish'd your ladyship of any guard or service by it, is able
to make the place good again, in himself.

HAU: There is no suspicion of that, sir.

CEN: God so, Mavis, Haughty is kissing.

MAV: Let us go too, and take part.


HAU: But I am glad of the fortune (beside the discovery of two
such empty caskets) to gain the knowledge of so rich a mine of
virtue as sir Dauphine.

CEN: We would be all glad to style him of our friendship, and see
him at the college.

MAV: He cannot mix with a sweeter society, I'll prophesy; and
I hope he himself will think so.

DAUP: I should be rude to imagine otherwise, lady.

TRUE: Did not I tell thee, Dauphine? Why, all their actions are
governed by crude opinion, without reason or cause; they know not
why they do any thing: but, as they are inform'd, believe, judge,
praise, condemn, love, hate, and in emulation one of another, do
all these things alike. Only they have a natural inclination sways
them generally to the worst, when they are left to themselves.
But pursue it, now thou hast them.

HAU: Shall we go in again, Morose?

EPI: Yes, madam.

CEN: We'll entreat sir Dauphine's company.

TRUE: Stay, good madam, the interview of the two friends, Pylades
and Orestes: I'll fetch them out to you straight.

HAU: Will you, master Truewit?

DAUP: Ay, but noble ladies, do not confess in your countenance,
or outward bearing to them, any discovery of their follies, that
we may see how they will bear up again, with what assurance and

HAU: We will not, sir Dauphine.

CEN. MAV: Upon our honours, sir Dauphine.

TRUE [GOES TO THE FIRST CLOSET.]: Sir Amorous, sir Amorous!
The ladies are here.

LA-F [WITHIN.]: Are they?

TRUE: Yes; but slip out by and by, as their backs are turn'd,
and meet sir John here, as by chance, when I call you.
[goes to the other.]
--Jack Daw.

DAW: What say you, sir?

TRUE: Whip out behind me suddenly, and no anger in your looks to
your adversary. Now, now!


LA-F: Noble sir John Daw, where have you been?

DAW: To seek you, sir Amorous.

LA-F: Me! I honour you.

DAW: I prevent you, sir.

CLER: They have forgot their rapiers.

TRUE: O, they meet in peace, man.

DAUP: Where's your sword, sir John?

CLER: And yours, sir Amorous?

DAW: Mine! my boy had it forth to mend the handle, e'en now.

LA-F: And my gold handle was broke too, and my boy had it forth.

DAUP: Indeed, sir!--How their excuses meet!

CLER: What a consent there is in the handles!

TRUE: Nay, there is so in the points too, I warrant you.


MRS. OTT: O me! madam, he comes again, the madman! Away!


MOR: What make these naked weapons here, gentlemen?

TRUE: O sir! here hath like to have been murder since you went;
a couple of knights fallen out about the bride's favours! We were
fain to take away their weapons; your house had been begg'd by
this time else.

MOR: For what?

CLER: For manslaughter, sir, as being accessary.

MOR: And for her favours?

TRUE: Ay, sir, heretofore, not present--Clerimont, carry them
their swords, now. They have done all the hurt they will do.


DAUP: Have you spoke with the lawyer, sir?

MOR: O, no! there is such a noise in the court, that they have
frighted me home with more violence then I went! such speaking
and counter-speaking, with their several voices of citations,
appellations, allegations, certificates, attachments,
intergatories, references, convictions, and afflictions indeed,
among the doctors and proctors, that the noise here is silence
to't! a kind of calm midnight!

TRUE: Why, sir, if you would be resolved indeed, I can bring you
hither a very sufficient lawyer, and a learned divine, that shall
enquire into every least scruple for you.

MOR: Can you, master Truewit?

TRUE: Yes, and are very sober, grave persons, that will dispatch
it in a chamber, with a whisper or two.

MOR: Good sir, shall I hope this benefit from you, and trust myself
into your hands?

TRUE: Alas, sir! your nephew and I have been ashamed and oft-times
mad, since you went, to think how you are abused. Go in, good sir,
and lock yourself up till we call you; we'll tell you more anon,

MOR: Do your pleasure with me gentlemen; I believe in you: and that
deserves no delusion.


TRUE: You shall find none, sir: but heap'd, heap'd plenty of

DAUP: What wilt thou do now, Wit?

TRUE: Recover me hither Otter and the barber, if you can, by any
means, presently.

DAUP: Why? to what purpose?

TRUE: O, I'll make the deepest divine, and gravest lawyer, out
of them two for him--

DAUP: Thou canst not, man; these are waking dreams.

TRUE: Do not fear me. Clap but a civil gown with a welt on the
one; and a canonical cloak with sleeves on the other: and give
them a few terms in their mouths, if there come not forth as able
a doctor, and complete a parson, for this turn, as may be wish'd,
trust not my election: and, I hope, without wronging the dignity
of either profession, since they are but persons put on, and for
mirth's sake, to torment him. The barber smatters Latin, I

DAUP: Yes, and Otter too.

TRUE: Well then, if I make them not wrangle out this case to his
no comfort, let me be thought a Jack Daw or La-Foole or anything
worse. Go you to your ladies, but first send for them.

DAUP: I will.


ACT 5. SCENE 5.1.



LA-F: Where had you our swords, master Clerimont?

CLER: Why, Dauphine took them from the madman.

LA-F: And he took them from our boys, I warrant you.

CLER: Very like, sir.

LA-F: Thank you, good master Clerimont. Sir John Daw and I are
both beholden to you.

CLER: Would I knew how to make you so, gentlemen!

DAW: Sir Amorous and I are your servants, sir.


MAV: Gentlemen, have any of you a pen and ink? I would fain write
out a riddle in Italian, for sir Dauphine, to translate.

CLER: Not I, in troth lady; I am no scrivener.

DAW: I can furnish you, I think, lady.


CLER: He has it in the haft of a knife, I believe.

LA-F: No, he has his box of instruments.

CLER: Like a surgeon!

LA-F: For the mathematics: his square, his compasses, his brass
pens, and black-lead, to draw maps of every place and person
where he comes.

CLER: How, maps of persons!

LA-F: Yes, sir, of Nomentack when he was here, and of the Prince of
Moldavia, and of his mistress, mistress Epicoene.


CLER: Away! he hath not found out her latitude, I hope.

LA-F: You are a pleasant gentleman, sir.

CLER: Faith, now we are in private, let's wanton it a little, and
talk waggishly.--Sir John, I am telling sir Amorous here, that you
two govern the ladies wherever you come; you carry the feminine
gender afore you.

DAW: They shall rather carry us afore them, if they will, sir.

CLER: Nay, I believe that they do, withal--but that you are the
prime men in their affections, and direct all their actions--

DAW: Not I: sir Amorous is.

LA-F: I protest, sir John is.

DAW: As I hope to rise in the state, sir Amorous, you have the

LA-F: Sir John, you have the person, and the discourse too.

DAW: Not I, sir. I have no discourse--and then you have activity

LA-F: I protest, sir John, you come as high from Tripoly as I do,
every whit: and lift as many join'd stools, and leap over them,
if you would use it.

CLER: Well, agree on't together knights; for between you, you
divide the kingdom or commonwealth of ladies' affections: I see
it, and can perceive a little how they observe you, and fear you,
indeed. You could tell strange stories, my masters, if you would,
I know.

DAW: Faith, we have seen somewhat, sir.

LA-F: That we have--velvet petticoats, and wrought smocks, or so.

DAW: Ay, and--

CLER: Nay, out with it, sir John: do not envy your friend the
pleasure of hearing, when you have had the delight of tasting.

DAW: Why--a--do you speak, sir Amorous.

LA-F: No, do you, sir John Daw.

DAW: I'faith, you shall.

LA-F: I'faith, you shall.

DAW: Why, we have been--

LA-F: In the great bed at Ware together in our time. On, sir

DAW: Nay, do you, sir Amorous.

CLER: And these ladies with you, knights?

LA-F: No, excuse us, sir.

DAW: We must not wound reputation.

LA-F: No matter--they were these, or others. Our bath cost us
fifteen pound when we came home.

CLER: Do you hear, sir John? You shall tell me but one thing
truly, as you love me.

DAW: If I can, I will, sir.

CLER: You lay in the same house with the bride, here?

DAW: Yes, and conversed with her hourly, sir.

CLER: And what humour is she of? Is she coming, and open, free?

DAW: O, exceeding open, sir. I was her servant, and sir Amorous was
to be.

CLER: Come, you have both had favours from her: I know, and have
heard so much.

DAW: O no, sir.

LA-F: You shall excuse us, sir: we must not wound reputation.

CLER: Tut, she is married now, and you cannot hurt her with any
report; and therefore speak plainly: how many times, i'faith?
which of you led first? ha!

LA-F: Sir John had her maidenhead, indeed.

DAW: O, it pleases him to say so, sir, but sir Amorous knows what
is what, as well.

CLER: Dost thou i'faith, Amorous?

LA-F: In a manner, sir.

CLER: Why, I commend you lads. Little knows don Bridegroom of
this. Nor shall he, for me.

DAW: Hang him, mad ox!

CLER: Speak softly: here comes his nephew, with the lady Haughty.
He'll get the ladies from you, sirs, if you look not to him in

LA-F: Why, if he do, we'll fetch them home again, I warrant you.



HAU: I assure you, sir Dauphine, it is the price and estimation
of your virtue only, that hath embark'd me to this adventure; and
I could not but make out to tell you so; nor can I repent me of
the act, since it is always an argument of some virtue in our
selves, that we love and affect it so in others.

DAUP: Your ladyship sets too high a price on my weakness.

HAU: Sir, I can distinguish gems from pebbles--

DAUP [ASIDE.]: Are you so skilful in stones?

HAU: And howsover I may suffer in such a judgment as yours, by
admitting equality of rank or society with Centaure or Mavis--

DAUP: You do not, madam; I perceive they are your mere foils.

HAU: Then, are you a friend to truth, sir; it makes me love you
the more. It is not the outward, but the inward man that I affect.
They are not apprehensive of an eminent perfection, but love flat,
and dully.

CEN [within.]: Where are you, my lady Haughty?

HAU: I come presently, Centaure.--My chamber, sir, my page shall
shew you; and Trusty, my woman, shall be ever awake for you: you
need not fear to communicate any thing with her, for she is a
Fidelia. I pray you wear this jewel for my sake, sir Dauphine.--
Where is Mavis, Centaure?

CEN: Within, madam, a writing. I'll follow you presently:
I'll but speak a word with sir Dauphine.

DAUP: With me, madam?

CEN: Good sir Dauphine, do not trust Haughty, nor make any credit
to her, whatever you do besides. Sir Dauphine, I give you this
caution, she is a perfect courtier, and loves nobody but for her
uses: and for her uses she loves all. Besides, her physicians give
her out to be none o' the clearest, whether she pay them or no,
heaven knows: and she's above fifty too, and pargets! See her in
a forenoon. Here comes Mavis, a worse face then she! you would
not like this, by candle-light.
If you'll come to my chamber one o' these mornings early, or late
in an evening, I will tell you more. Where's Haughty, Mavis?

MAV: Within, Centaure.

CEN: What have you, there?

MAV: An Italian riddle for sir Dauphine,--you shall not see it
i'faith, Centaure.--
Good sir Dauphine, solve it for me. I'll call for it anon.


CLER [COMING FORWARD.]: How now, Dauphine! how dost thou quit
thyself of these females?

DAUP: 'Slight, they haunt me like fairies, and give me jewels
here; I cannot be rid of them.

CLER: O, you must not tell though.

DAUP: Mass, I forgot that: I was never so assaulted. One loves
for virtue, and bribes me with this;
--another loves me with caution, and so would possess me; a
third brings me a riddle here: and all are jealous: and rail each
at other.

CLER: A riddle! pray let me see it.
Sir Dauphine, I chose this way of intimation for privacy. The
ladies here, I know, have both hope and purpose to make a
collegiate and servant of you. If I might be so honoured, as to
appear at any end of so noble a work, I would enter into a fame
of taking physic to-morrow, and continue it four or five days,
or longer, for your visitation. Mavis.
By my faith, a subtle one! Call you this a riddle? what's their
plain dealing, trow?

DAUP: We lack Truewit to tell us that.

CLER: We lack him for somewhat else too: his knights reformadoes
are wound up as high and insolent as ever they were.

DAUP: You jest.

CLER: No drunkards, either with wine or vanity, ever confess'd
such stories of themselves. I would not give a fly's leg, in
balance against all the womens' reputations here, if they could
be but thought to speak truth: and for the bride, they have made
their affidavit against her directly--

DAUP: What, that they have lain with her?

CLER: Yes; and tell times and circumstances, with the cause why,
and the place where. I had almost brought them to affirm that they
had done it to-day.

DAUP: Not both of them?

CLER: Yes, faith: with a sooth or two more I had effected it.
They would have set it down under their hands.

DAUP: Why, they will be our sport, I see, still, whether we will
or no.


TRUE: O, are you here? Come, Dauphine; go call your uncle
presently: I have fitted my divine, and my canonist, dyed
their beards and all. The knaves do not know themselves, they
are so exalted and altered. Preferment changes any man. Thou
shalt keep one door and I another, and then Clerimont in the
midst, that he may have no means of escape from their cavilling,
when they grow hot once again. And then the women, as I have
given the bride her instructions, to break in upon him in the
l'enuoy. O, 'twill be full and twanging! Away! fetch him.
Come, master doctor, and master parson, look to your parts now,
and discharge them bravely: you are well set forth, perform it
as well. If you chance to be out, do not confess it with standing
still, or humming, or gaping one at another: but go on, and talk
aloud and eagerly; use vehement action, and only remember your
terms, and you are safe. Let the matter go where it will: you
have many will do so. But at first be very solemn, and grave like
your garments, though you loose your selves after, and skip out
like a brace of jugglers on a table. Here he comes: set your
faces, and look superciliously, while I present you.


MOR: Are these the two learned men?

TRUE: Yes, sir; please you salute them.

MOR: Salute them! I had rather do any thing, than wear out time so
unfruitfully, sir. I wonder how these common forms, as God save
you, and You are welcome, are come to be a habit in our lives:
or, I am glad to see you! when I cannot see what the profit can
be of these words, so long as it is no whit better with him whose
affairs are sad and grievous, that he hears this salutation.

TRUE: 'Tis true, sir; we'll go to the matter then.--Gentlemen,
master doctor, and master parson, I have acquainted you
sufficiently with the business for which you are come hither; and
you are not now to inform yourselves in the state of the question,
I know. This is the gentleman who expects your resolution, and
therefore, when you please, begin.

OTT: Please you, master doctor.

CUT: Please you, good master parson.

OTT: I would hear the canon-law speak first.

CUT: It must give place to positive divinity, sir.

MOR: Nay, good gentlemen, do not throw me into circumstances. Let
your comforts arrive quickly at me, those that are. Be swift in
affording me my peace, if so I shall hope any. I love not your
disputations, or your court-tumults. And that it be not strange to
you, I will tell you: My father, in my education, was wont to
advise me, that I should always collect and contain my mind, not
suffering it to flow loosely; that I should look to what things
were necessary to the carriage of my life, and what not; embracing
the one and eschewing the other: in short, that I should endear
myself to rest, and avoid turmoil: which now is grown to be
another nature to me. So that I come not to your public pleadings,
or your places of noise; not that I neglect those things that make
for the dignity of the commonwealth: but for the mere avoiding
of clamours and impertinencies of orators, that know not how to be
silent. And for the cause of noise, am I now a suitor to you. You
do not know in what a misery I have been exercised this day, what
a torrent of evil! my very house turns round with the tumult! I
dwell in a windmill: The perpetual motion is here, and not at

TRUE: Well, good master doctor, will you break the ice? master
parson will wade after.

CUT: Sir, though unworthy, and the weaker, I will presume.

OTT: 'Tis no presumption, domine doctor.

MOR: Yet again!

CUT: Your question is, For how many causes a man may have
divortium legitimum, a lawful divorce? First, you must understand
the nature of the word, divorce, a divertendo--

MOR: No excursions upon words, good doctor, to the question briefly.

CUT: I answer then, the canon-law affords divorce but in a few
cases; and the principal is in the common case, the adulterous
case: But there are duodecim impedimenta, twelve impediments, as
we call them, all which do not dirimere contractum, but irritum
reddere matrimonium, as we say in the canon-law, not take away the
bond, but cause a nullity therein.

MOR: I understood you before: good sir, avoid your impertinency of

OTT: He cannot open this too much, sir, by your favour.

MOR: Yet more!

TRUE: O, you must give the learned men leave, sir.--To your
impediments, master Doctor.

CUT: The first is impedimentum erroris.

OTT: Of which there are several species.

CUT: Ay, as error personae.

OTT: If you contract yourself to one person, thinking her another.

CUT: Then, error fortunae.

OTT: If she be a begger, and you thought her rich.

CUT: Then, error qualitatis.

OTT: If she prove stubborn or head-strong, that you thought

MOR: How! is that, sir, a lawful impediment? One at once, I pray
you gentlemen.

OTT: Ay, ante copulam, but not post copulam, sir.

CUT: Master Parson says right. Nec post nuptiarum benedictionem.
It doth indeed but irrita reddere sponsalia, annul the contract:
after marriage it is of no obstancy.

TRUE: Alas, sir, what a hope are we fallen from by this time!

CUT: The next is conditio: if you thought her free born, and she
prove a bond-woman, there is impediment of estate and condition.

OTT: Ay, but, master doctor, those servitudes are sublatae now,
among us Christians.

CUT: By your favour, master parson--

OTT: You shall give me leave, master doctor.

MOR: Nay, gentlemen, quarrel not in that question; it concerns not
my case: pass to the third.

CUT: Well then, the third is votum: if either party have made a
vow of chastity. But that practice, as master parson said of the
other, is taken away among us, thanks be to discipline. The fourth
is cognatio: if the persons be of kin within the degrees.

OTT: Ay: do you know what the degrees are, sir?

MOR: No, nor I care not, sir: they offer me no comfort in the
question, I am sure.

CUT: But there is a branch of this impediment may, which is
cognatio spiritualis: if you were her godfather, sir, then the
marriage is incestuous.

OTT: That comment is absurd and superstitious, master doctor: I
cannot endure it. Are we not all brothers and sisters, and as much
akin in that, as godfathers and god-daughters?

MOR: O me! to end the controversy, I never was a godfather, I
never was a godfather in my life, sir. Pass to the next.

CUT: The fifth is crimen adulterii; the known case. The sixth,
cultus disparitas, difference of religion: have you ever examined
her, what religion she is of?

MOR: No, I would rather she were of none, than be put to the
trouble of it!

OTT: You may have it done for you, sir.

MOR: By no means, good sir; on to the rest: shall you ever come
to an end, think you?

TRUE: Yes, he has done half, sir. On, to the rest.--Be patient,
and expect, sir.

CUT: The seventh is, vis: if it were upon compulsion or force.

MOR: O no, it was too voluntary, mine; too voluntary.

CUT: The eight is, ordo; if ever she have taken holy orders.

OTT: That's supersitious too.

MOR: No matter, master parson: Would she would go into a nunnery

CUT: The ninth is, ligamen; if you were bound, sir, to any other

MOR: I thrust myself too soon into these fetters.

CUT: The tenth is, publica honestas: which is inchoata quaedam

OTT: Ay, or affinitas orta ex sponsalibus; and is but leve

MOR: I feel no air of comfort blowing to me, in all this.

CUT: The eleventh is, affinitas ex fornicatione.

OTT: Which is no less vera affinitas, than the other, master

CUT: True, quae oritur ex legitimo matrimonio.

OTT: You say right, venerable doctor: and, nascitur ex eo, quod
per conjugium duae personae efficiuntur una caro--

MOR: Hey-day, now they begin!

CUT: I conceive you, master parson: ita per fornicationem aeque
est verus pater, qui sic generat--

OTT: Et vere filius qui sic generatur--

MOR: What's all this to me?

CLER: Now it grows warm.

CUT: The twelfth, and last is, si forte coire nequibis.

OTT: Ay, that is impedimentum gravissimum: it doth utterly annul,
and annihilate, that. If you have manifestam frigiditatem, you
are well, sir.

TRUE: Why, there is comfort come at length, sir. Confess yourself
but a man unable, and she will sue to be divorced first.

OTT: Ay, or if there be morbus perpetuus, et insanabilis; as
paralysis, elephantiasis, or so--

DAUP: O, but frigiditas is the fairer way, gentlemen.

OTT: You say troth, sir, and as it is in the canon, master

CUT: I conceive you, sir.

CLER: Before he speaks!

OTT: That a boy, or child, under years, is not fit for marriage,
because he cannot reddere debitum. So your omnipotentes--

TRUE [ASIDE TO OTT.]: Your impotentes, you whoreson lobster!

OTT: Your impotentes, I should say, are minime apti ad
contrahenda matrimonium.

TRUE: Matrimonium! we shall have most unmatrimonial Latin with
you: matrimonia, and be hang'd.

DAUP: You put them out, man.

CUT: But then there will arise a doubt, master parson, in our
case, post matrimonium: that frigiditate praeditus--do you
conceive me, sir?

OTT: Very well, sir.

CUT: Who cannot uti uxore pro uxore, may habere eam pro sorore.

OTT: Absurd, absurd, absurd, and merely apostatical!

CUT: You shall pardon me, master parson, I can prove it.

OTT: You can prove a will, master doctor, you can prove nothing
else. Does not the verse of your own canon say,
Haec socianda vetant connubia, facta retractant?

CUT: I grant you; but how do they retractare, master parson?

MOR: O, this was it I feared.

OTT: In aeternum, sir.

CUT: That's false in divinity, by your favour.

OTT: 'Tis false in humanity to say so. Is he not prorsus inutilis
ad thorum? Can he praestare fidem datam? I would fain know.

CUT: Yes; how if he do convalere?

OTT: He cannot convalere, it is impossible.

TRUE: Nay, good sir, attend the learned men, they will think you
neglect them else.

CUT: Or, if he do simulare himself frigidum, odio uxoris, or so?

OTT: I say, he is adulter manifestus then.

DAUP: They dispute it very learnedly, i'faith.

OTT: And prostitutor uxoris; and this is positive.

MOR: Good sir, let me escape.

TRUE: You will not do me that wrong, sir?

OTT: And, therefore, if he be manifeste frigidus, sir--

CUT: Ay, if he be manifeste frigidus, I grant you--

OTT: Why, that was my conclusion.

CUT: And mine too.

TRUE: Nay, hear the conclusion, sir.

OTT: Then, frigiditatis causa--

CUT: Yes, causa frigiditatis--

MOR: O, mine ears!

OTT: She may have libellum divortii against you.

CUT: Ay, divortii libellum she will sure have.

MOR: Good echoes, forbear.

OTT: If you confess it.

CUT: Which I would do, sir--

MOR: I will do any thing.

OTT: And clear myself in foro conscientiae--

CUT: Because you want indeed--

MOR: Yet more?

OTT: Exercendi potestate.


EPI: I will not endure it any longer. Ladies, I beseech you,
help me. This is such a wrong as never was offered to poor
bride before: upon her marriage day, to have her husband
conspire against her, and a couple of mercenary companions
to be brought in for form's sake, to persuade a separation!
If you had blood or virtue in you, gentlemen, you would not
suffer such ear-wigs about a husband, or scorpions to creep
between man and wife.

MOR: O the variety and changes of my torment!

HAU: Let them be cudgell'd out of doors, by our grooms.

CEN: I'll lend you my foot-man.

MAV: We'll have our men blanket them in the hall.

MRS. OTT: As there was one at our house, madam, for peeping
in at the door.

DAW: Content, i'faith.

TRUE: Stay, ladies and gentlemen; you'll hear, before you proceed?

MAV: I'd have the bridegroom blanketted too.

CEN: Begin with him first.

HAU: Yes, by my troth.

MOR: O mankind generation!

DAUP: Ladies, for my sake forbear.

HAU: Yes, for sir Dauphine's sake.

CEN: He shall command us.

LA-F: He is as fine a gentleman of his inches, madam, as any
is about the town, and wears as good colours when he listS.

TRUE: Be brief, sir, and confess your infirmity, she'll be a-fire
to be quit of you, if she but hear that namEd once, you shall not
entreat her to stay: she'll fly you like one that had the marks
upon him.

MOR: Ladies, I must crave all your pardons--

TRUE: Silence, ladies.

MOR: For a wrong I have done to your whole sex, in marrying this
fair, and virtuous gentlewoman--

CLER: Hear him, good ladies.

MOR: Being guilty of an infirmity, which, before I conferred
with these learned men, I thought I might have concealed--

TRUE: But now being better informed in his conscience by them,
he is to declare it, and give satisfaction, by asking your public

MOR: I am no man, ladies.

ALL: How!

MOR: Utterly unabled in nature, by reason of frigidity, to
perform the duties, or any the least office of a husband.

MAV: Now out upon him, prodigious creature!

CEN: Bridegroom uncarnate!

HAU: And would you offer it to a young gentlewoman?

MRS. OTT: A lady of her longings?

EPI: Tut, a device, a device, this, it smells rankly, ladies.
A mere comment of his own.

TRUE: Why, if you suspect that, ladies, you may have him

DAW: As the custom is, by a jury of physicians.

LA-F: Yes faith, 'twill be brave.

MOR: O me, must I undergo that?

MRS. OTT: No, let women search him, madam: we can do it

MOR: Out on me! worse.

EPI: No, ladies, you shall not need, I will take him with all
his faults.

MOR: Worst of all!

CLER: Why then, 'tis no divorce, doctor, if she consent not?

CUT: No, if the man be frigidus, it is de parte uxoris, that we
grant libellum divortii, in the law.

OTT: Ay, it is the same in theology.

MOR: Worse, worse than worst!

TRUE: Nay, sir, be not utterly disheartened; we have yet a
small relic of hope left, as near as our comfort is blown
out. Clerimont, produce your brace of knights. What was that,
master parson, you told me in errore qualitatis, e'en now?--
Dauphine, whisper the bride, that she carry it as if she were
guilty, and ashamed.

OTT: Marry, sir, in errore qualitatis (which master doctor did
forbear to urge,) if she be found corrupta, that is, vitiated or
broken up, that was pro virgine desponsa, espoused for a maid--

MOR: What then, sir?

OTT: It doth dirimere contractum, and irritum reddere too.

TRUE: If this be true, we are happy again, sir, once more. Here
are an honourable brace of knights, that shall affirm so much.

DAW: Pardon us, good master Clerimont.

LA-F: You shall excuse us, master Clerimont.

CLER: Nay, you must make it good now, knights, there is no remedy;
I'll eat no words for you, nor no men: you know you spoke it to

DAW: Is this gentleman-like, sir?

TRUE [ASIDE TO DAW.]: Jack Daw, he's worse then sir Amorous;
fiercer a great deal.
[ASIDE TO LA-FOOLE.]--Sir Amorous, beware, there be ten Daws in
this Clerimont.

LA-F: I'll confess it, sir.

DAW: Will you, sir Amorous, will you wound reputation?

LA-F: I am resolvEd.

TRUE: So should you be too, Jack Daw: what should keep you off?
she's but a woman, and in disgrace: he'll be glad on't.

DAW: Will he? I thought he would have been angry.

CLER: You will dispatch, knights, it must be done, i'faith.

TRUE: Why, an it must, it shall, sir, they say: they'll ne'er
go back.
--Do not tempt his patience.

DAW: It is true indeed, sir?

LA-F: Yes, I assure you, sir.

MOR: What is true gentlemen? what do you assure me?

DAW: That we have known your bride, sir--

LA-F: In good fashion. She was our mistress, or so--

CLER: Nay, you must be plain, knights, as you were to me.

OTT: Ay, the question is, if you have carnaliter, or no?

LA-F: Carnaliter! what else, sir?

OTT: It is enough: a plain nullity.

EPI: I am undone, I am undone!

MOR: O, let me worship and adore you, gentlemen!

EPI [WEEPS.]: I am undone!

MOR: Yes, to my hand, I thank these knights.
Master parson, let me thank you otherwise. [GIVES HIM MONEY.]

HAU: And have they confess'd?

MAV: Now out upon them, informers!

TRUE: You see what creatures you may bestow your favours
on, madams.

HAU: I would except against them as beaten knights, wench,
and not good witnesses in law.

MRS. OTT: Poor gentlewoman, how she takes it!

HAU: Be comforted, Morose, I love you the better for't.

CEN: so do I, I protest.

CUT: But, gentlemen, you have not known her since matrimonium?

DAW: Not to-day, master doctor.

LA-F: No, sir, not to-day.

CUT: Why, then I say, for any act before, the matrimonium is good
and perfect: unless the worshipful bridegroom did precisely,
before witness, demand, if she were virgo ante nuptias.

EPI: No, that he did not, I assure you, master doctor.

CUT: If he cannot prove that, it is ratum conjugium,
notwithstanding the premisSes. And they do no way impedire. And
this is my sentence, this I pronounce.

OTT: I am of master doctor's resolution too, sir: if you made
not that demand, ante nuptias.

MOR: O my heart! wilt thou break? wilt thou break? this is worst
of all worst worsts that hell could have devised! Marry a whore,
and so much noise!

DAUP: Come, I see now plain confederacy in this doctor and this
parson, to abuse a gentleman. You study his affliction. I pray
be gone companions.--And, gentlemen, I begin to suspect you for
having parts with them.--Sir, will it please you hear me?

MOR: O do not talk to me, take not from me the pleasure of dying
in silence, nephew.

DAUP: Sir, I must speak to you. I have been long your poor
despised kinsman, and many a hard thought has strengthened
you against me: but now it shall appear if either I love you
or your peace, and prefer them to all the world beside. I will
not be long or grievous to you, sir. If I free you of this
unhappy match absolutely, and instantly, after all this
trouble, and almost in your despair, now--

MOR: It cannot be.

DAUP: Sir, that you be never troubled with a murmur of it more,
what shall I hope for, or deserve of you?

MOR: O, what thou wilt, nephew! thou shalt deserve me, and have

DAUP: Shall I have your favour perfect to me, and love hereafter?

MOR: That, and any thing beside. Make thine own conditions. My
whole estate is thine; manage it, I will become thy ward.

DAUP: Nay, sir, I will not be so unreasonable.

EPI: Will sir Dauphine be mine enemy too?

DAUP: You know I have been long a suitor to you, uncle, that
out of your estate, which is fifteen hundred a-year, you
would allow me but five hundred during life, and assure the
rest upon me after: to which I have often, by myself and
friends tendered you a writing to sign, which you would never
consent or incline to. If you please but to effect it now--

MOR: Thou shalt have it, nephew: I will do it, and more.

DAUP: If I quit you not presently, and for ever of this
cumber, you shall have power instantly, afore all these, to
revoke your act, and I will become whose slave you will give
me to, for ever.

MOR: Where is the writing? I will seal to it, that, or to a
blank, and write thine own conditions.

EPI: O me, most unfortunate, wretched gentlewoman!

HAU: Will sir Dauphine do this?

EPI: Good sir, have some compassion on me.

MOR: O, my nephew knows you, belike; away, crocodile!

HAU: He does it not sure without good ground.


MOR: Come, nephew, give me the pen. I will subscribe to any
thing, and seal to what thou wilt, for my deliverance. Thou
art my restorer. Here, I deliver it thee as my deed. If there
be a word in it lacking, or writ with false orthography, I
protest before [heaven] I will not take the advantage.

DAUP: Then here is your release, sir.
You have married a boy, a gentleman's son, that I have
brought up this half year at my great charges, and for this
composition, which I have now made with you.--What say you,
master doctor? This is justum impedimentum, I hope, error

OTT: Yes sir, in primo gradu.

CUT: In primo gradu.

DAUP: I thank you, good doctor Cutbeard, and parson Otter.
You are beholden to them, sir, that have taken this pains for
you; and my friend, master Truewit, who enabled them for the
business. Now you may go in and rest; be as private as you
will, sir.
I'll not trouble you, till you trouble me with your funeral,
which I care not how soon it come.
--Cutbeard, I'll make your lease good. "Thank me not, but with
your leg, Cutbeard." And Tom Otter, your princess shall be
reconciled to you.--How now, gentlemen, do you look at me?

CLER: A boy!

DAUP: Yes, mistress Epicoene.

TRUE: Well, Dauphine, you have lurch'd your friends of the
better half of the garland, by concealing this part of the
plot: but much good do it thee, thou deserv'st it, lad. And,
Clerimont, for thy unexpected bringing these two to
confession, wear my part of it freely. Nay, sir Daw, and sir
La-Foole, you see the gentlewoman that has done you the
favours! we are all thankful to you, and so should the
woman-kind here, specially for lying on her, though not
with her! you meant so, I am sure? But that we have stuck it
upon you to-day, in your own imagined persons, and so lately,
this Amazon, the champion of the sex, should beat you now
thriftily, for the common slanders which ladies receive from
such cuckoos as you are. You are they that, when no merit or
fortune can make you hope to enjoy their bodies, will yet
lie with their reputations, and make their fame suffer. Away,
you common moths of these, and all ladies' honours. Go,
travel to make legs and faces, and come home with some new
matter to be laugh'd at: you deserve to live in an air as
corrupted as that wherewith you feed rumour.
Madams, you are mute, upon this new metamorphosis! But here
stands she that has vindicated your fames. Take heed of such
insectae hereafter. And let it not trouble you, that you
have discovered any mysteries to this young gentleman: he is
almost of years, and will make a good visitant within this
twelvemonth. In the mean time, we'll all undertake for his
secrecy, that can speak so well of his silence.
--Spectators, if you like this comedy, rise cheerfully, and
now Morose is gone in, clap your hands. It may be, that noise
will cure him, at least please him.



ABATE, cast down, subdue.

ABHORRING, repugnant (to), at variance.

ABJECT, base, degraded thing, outcast.

ABRASE, smooth, blank.

ABSOLUTE(LY), faultless(ly).

ABSTRACTED, abstract, abstruse.

ABUSE, deceive, insult, dishonour, make ill use of.

ACATER, caterer.

ACATES, cates.

ACCEPTIVE, willing, ready to accept, receive.

ACCOMMODATE, fit, befitting.  (The word was a fashionable
one and used on all occasions.  See "Henry IV.," pt. 2,
iii. 4).

ACCOST, draw near, approach.

ACKNOWN, confessedly acquainted with.

ACME, full maturity.

ADALANTADO, lord deputy or governor of a Spanish province.

ADJECTION, addition.

ADMIRATION, astonishment.

ADMIRE, wonder, wonder at.

ADROP, philosopher's stone, or substance from which obtained.

ADSCRIVE, subscribe.

ADULTERATE, spurious, counterfeit.

ADVANCE, lift.

ADVERTISE, inform, give intelligence.

ADVERTISED, "be --," be it known to you.

ADVERTISEMENT, intelligence.

ADVISE, consider, bethink oneself, deliberate.

ADVISED, informed, aware; "are you --?" have you found that out?

AFFECT, love, like; aim at; move.

AFFECTED, disposed; beloved.

AFFECTIONATE, obstinate; prejudiced.

AFFECTS, affections.

AFFRONT, "give the -- ," face.

AFFY, have confidence in; betroth.

AFTER, after the manner of.

AGAIN, AGAINST, in anticipation of.

AGGRAVATE, increase, magnify, enlarge upon.

AGNOMINATION.  See Paranomasie.

AIERY, nest, brood.

AIM, guess.

ALL HID, children's cry at hide-and-seek.

ALL-TO, completely, entirely ("all-to-be-laden").

ALLOWANCE, approbation, recognition.

ALMA-CANTARAS (astronomy), parallels of altitude.

ALMAIN, name of a dance.

ALMUTEN, planet of chief influence in the horoscope.

ALONE, unequalled, without peer.

ALUDELS, subliming pots.

AMAZED, confused, perplexed.

AMBER, AMBRE, ambergris.

AMBREE, MARY, a woman noted for her valour at the
siege of Ghent, 1458.

AMES-ACE, lowest throw at dice.

AMPHIBOLIES, ambiguities.

AMUSED, bewildered, amazed.

AN, if.

ANATOMY, skeleton, or dissected body.

ANDIRONS, fire-dogs.

ANGEL, gold coin worth 10 shillings, stamped with the
figure of the archangel Michael.

ANNESH CLEARE, spring known as Agnes le Clare.

ANSWER, return hit in fencing.

ANTIC, ANTIQUE, clown, buffoon.

ANTIC, like a buffoon.

ANTIPERISTASIS, an opposition which enhances the quality
it opposes.

APOZEM, decoction.

APPERIL, peril.


APPLY, attach.

APPREHEND, take into custody.

APPREHENSIVE, quick of perception; able to perceive and appreciate.

APPROVE, prove, confirm.

APT, suit, adapt; train, prepare; dispose, incline.

APT(LY), suitable(y), opportune(ly).

APTITUDE, suitableness.

ARBOR, "make the --," cut up the game (Gifford).

ARCHES, Court of Arches.

ARCHIE, Archibald Armstrong, jester to James I. and Charles I.

ARGAILE, argol, crust or sediment in wine casks.

ARGENT-VIVE, quicksilver.

ARGUMENT, plot of a drama; theme, subject; matter in question;
token, proof.

ARRIDE, please.

ARSEDINE, mixture of copper and zinc, used as an imitation of

ARTHUR, PRINCE, reference to an archery show by a society who
assumed arms, etc., of Arthur's knights.

ARTICLE, item.


ASCENSION, evaporation, distillation.

ASPIRE, try to reach, obtain, long for.

ASSALTO (Italian), assault.

ASSAY, draw a knife along the belly of the deer, a
ceremony of the hunting-field.

ASSOIL, solve.

ASSURE, secure possession or reversion of.

ATHANOR, a digesting furnace, calculated to keep up a
constant heat.

ATONE, reconcile.

ATTACH, attack, seize.

AUDACIOUS, having spirit and confidence.

AUTHENTIC(AL), of authority, authorised, trustworthy, genuine.

AVISEMENT, reflection, consideration.

AVOID, begone! get rid of.

AWAY WITH, endure.

AZOCH, Mercurius Philosophorum.

BABION, baboon.

BABY, doll.

BACK-SIDE, back premises.

BAFFLE, treat with contempt.

BAGATINE, Italian coin, worth about the third of a farthing.

BAIARD, horse of magic powers known to old romance.

BALDRICK, belt worn across the breast to support bugle, etc.

BALE (of dice), pair.

BALK, overlook, pass by, avoid.

BALLACE, ballast.

BALLOO, game at ball.

BALNEUM (BAIN MARIE), a vessel for holding hot water
in which other vessels are stood for heating.

BANBURY, "brother of --," Puritan.

BANDOG, dog tied or chained up.

BANE, woe, ruin.

BANQUET, a light repast; dessert.

BARB, to clip gold.

BARBEL, fresh-water fish.

BARE, meer; bareheaded; it was "a particular mark of state
and grandeur for the coachman to be uncovered" (Gifford).

BARLEY-BREAK, game somewhat similar to base.

BASE, game of prisoner's base.

BASES, richly embroidered skirt reaching to the knees, or

BASILISK, fabulous reptile, believed to slay with its eye.

BASKET, used for the broken provision collected for prisoners.

BASON, basons, etc., were beaten by the attendant mob when
bad characters were "carted."

BATE, be reduced; abate, reduce.

BATOON, baton, stick.

BATTEN, feed, grow fat.

BAWSON, badger.

BEADSMAN, prayer-man, one engaged to pray for another.

BEAGLE, small hound; fig. spy.

BEAR IN HAND, keep in suspense, deceive with false hopes.

BEARWARD, bear leader.

BEDPHERE.  See Phere.

BEDSTAFF, (?) wooden pin in the side of the bedstead for
supporting the bedclothes (Johnson); one of the sticks or
"laths"; a stick used in making a bed.

BEETLE, heavy mallet.

BEG, "I'd -- him," the custody of minors and idiots was
begged for; likewise property fallen forfeit to the Crown
("your house had been begged").

BELL-MAN, night watchman.

BENJAMIN, an aromatic gum.

BERLINA, pillory.

BESCUMBER, defile.

BESLAVE, beslabber.

BESOGNO, beggar.

BESPAWLE, bespatter.

BETHLEHEM GABOR, Transylvanian hero, proclaimed King of Hungary.

BEVER, drinking.

BEVIS, SIR, knight of romance whose horse was equally celebrated.

BEWRAY, reveal, make known.

BEZANT, heraldic term: small gold circle.

BEZOAR'S STONE, a remedy known by this name was a
supposed antidote to poison.

BID-STAND, highwayman.

BIGGIN, cap, similar to that worn by the Beguines; nightcap.

BILIVE (belive), with haste.

BILK, nothing, empty talk.

BILL, kind of pike.

BILLET, wood cut for fuel, stick.

BIRDING, thieving.

BLACK SANCTUS, burlesque hymn, any unholy riot.

BLANK, originally a small French coin.

BLANK, white.

BLANKET, toss in a blanket.

BLAZE, outburst of violence.

BLAZE, (her.) blazon; publish abroad.

BLAZON, armorial bearings; fig. all that pertains to
good birth and breeding.

BLIN, "withouten --," without ceasing.

BLOW, puff up.

BLUE, colour of servants' livery, hence "-- order,"
"-- waiters."

BLUSHET, blushing one.

BOB, jest, taunt.

BOB, beat, thump.

BODGE, measure.

BODKIN, dagger, or other short, pointed weapon; long
pin with which the women fastened up their hair.

BOLT, roll (of material).

BOLT, dislodge, rout out; sift (boulting-tub).

BOLT'S-HEAD, long, straight-necked vessel for distillation.

BOMBARD SLOPS, padded, puffed-out breeches.

BONA ROBA, "good, wholesome, plum-cheeked wench" (Johnson)
-- not always used in compliment.

BONNY-CLABBER, sour butter-milk.

BOOKHOLDER, prompter.

BOOT, "to --," into the bargain; "no --," of no avail.

BORACHIO, bottle made of skin.

BORDELLO, brothel.

BORNE IT, conducted, carried it through.

BOTTLE (of hay), bundle, truss.

BOTTOM, skein or ball of thread; vessel.

BOURD, jest.

BOVOLI, snails or cockles dressed in the Italian manner

BOW-POT, flower vase or pot.

BOYS, "terrible --," "angry --," roystering young bucks.
(See Nares).


BRACH, bitch.

BRADAMANTE, a heroine in "Orlando Furioso."

BRADLEY, ARTHUR OF, a lively character commemorated in

BRAKE, frame for confining a horse's feet while being
shod, or strong curb or bridle; trap.

BRANCHED, with "detached sleeve ornaments, projecting
from the shoulders of the gown" (Gifford).

BRANDISH, flourish of weapon.

BRASH, brace.

BRAVE, bravado, braggart speech.

BRAVE (adv.), gaily, finely (apparelled).

BRAVERIES, gallants.

BRAVERY, extravagant gaiety of apparel.

BRAVO, bravado, swaggerer.

BRAZEN-HEAD, speaking head made by Roger Bacon.

BREATHE, pause for relaxation; exercise.

BREATH UPON, speak dispraisingly of.

BREND, burn.

BRIDE-ALE, wedding feast.

BRIEF, abstract; (mus.) breve.

BRISK, smartly dressed.

BRIZE, breese, gadfly.

BROAD-SEAL, state seal.

BROCK, badger (term of contempt).

BROKE, transact business as a broker.

BROOK, endure, put up with.

BROUGHTON, HUGH, an English divine and Hebrew scholar.

BRUIT, rumour.

BUCK, wash.

BUCKLE, bend.

BUFF, leather made of buffalo skin, used for military
and serjeants' coats, etc.

BUFO, black tincture.

BUGLE, long-shaped bead.

BULLED, (?) bolled, swelled.

BULLIONS, trunk hose.

BULLY, term of familiar endearment.

BUNGY, Friar Bungay, who had a familiar in the shape of a dog.

BURDEN, refrain, chorus.

BURGONET, closely-fitting helmet with visor.

BURGULLION, braggadocio.

BURN, mark wooden measures ("--ing of cans").

BURROUGH, pledge, security.

BUSKIN, half-boot, foot gear reaching high up the leg.

BUTT-SHAFT, barbless arrow for shooting at butts.

BUTTER, NATHANIEL ("Staple of News"), a compiler of general
news.  (See Cunningham).

BUTTERY-HATCH, half-door shutting off the buttery, where
provisions and liquors were stored.

BUY, "he bought me," formerly the guardianship of wards
could be bought.

BUZ, exclamation to enjoin silence.

BUZZARD, simpleton.

BY AND BY, at once.

BY(E), "on the __," incidentally, as of minor or secondary
importance; at the side.

BY-CHOP, by-blow, bastard.

CADUCEUS, Mercury's wand.

CALIVER, light kind of musket.

CALLET, woman of ill repute.

CALLOT, coif worn on the wigs of our judges or
serjeants-at-law (Gifford).

CALVERED, crimped, or sliced and pickled.  (See Nares).

CAMOUCCIO, wretch, knave.

CAMUSED, flat.

CAN, knows.

CANDLE-RENT, rent from house property.

CANDLE-WASTER, one who studies late.

CANTER, sturdy beggar.

CAP OF MAINTENCE, an insignia of dignity, a cap of state
borne before kings at their coronation; also an heraldic term.

CAPABLE, able to comprehend, fit to receive instruction,

CAPANEUS, one of the "Seven against Thebes."

CARACT, carat, unit of weight for precious stones, etc.;
value, worth.

CARANZA, Spanish author of a book on duelling.

CARCANET, jewelled ornament for the neck.

CARE, take care; object.

CAROSH, coach, carriage.

CARPET, table-cover.

CARRIAGE, bearing, behaviour.

CARWHITCHET, quip, pun.

CASAMATE, casemate, fortress.

CASE, a pair.

CASE, "in --," in condition.

CASSOCK, soldier's loose overcoat.

CAST, flight of hawks, couple.

CAST, throw dice; vomit; forecast, calculate.

CAST, cashiered.

CASTING-GLASS, bottle for sprinkling perfume.

CASTRIL, kestrel, falcon.

CAT, structure used in sieges.

CATAMITE, old form of "ganymede."

CATASTROPHE, conclusion.

CATCHPOLE, sheriff's officer.

CATES, dainties, provisions.

CATSO, rogue, cheat.

CAUTELOUS, crafty, artful.

CENSURE, criticism; sentence.

CENSURE, criticise; pass sentence, doom.

CERUSE, cosmetic containing white lead.

CESS, assess.

CHANGE, "hunt --," follow a fresh scent.

CHAPMAN, retail dealer.

CHARACTER, handwriting.

CHARGE, expense.

CHARM, subdue with magic, lay a spell on, silence.

CHARMING, exercising magic power.

CHARTEL, challenge.

CHEAP, bargain, market.

CHEAR, CHEER, comfort, encouragement; food, entertainment.

CHECK AT, aim reproof at.

CHEQUIN, gold Italian coin.

CHEVRIL, from kidskin, which is elastic and pliable.

CHIAUS, Turkish envoy; used for a cheat, swindler.

CHILDERMASS DAY, Innocents' Day.

CHOKE-BAIL, action which does not allow of bail.


CHRYSOSPERM, ways of producing gold.

CIBATION, adding fresh substances to supply the waste
of evaporation.

CIMICI, bugs.

CINOPER, cinnabar.

CIOPPINI, chopine, lady's high shoe.

CIRCLING BOY, "a species of roarer; one who in some way
drew a man into a snare, to cheat or rob him" (Nares).

CIRCUMSTANCE, circumlocution, beating about the bush;
ceremony, everything pertaining to a certain condition;
detail, particular.

CITRONISE, turn citron colour.

CITTERN, kind of guitar.

CITY-WIRES, woman of fashion, who made use of wires
for hair and dress.

CIVIL, legal.

CLAP, clack, chatter.

CLAPPER-DUDGEON, downright beggar.

CLAPS HIS DISH, a clap, or clack, dish (dish with a
movable lid) was carried by beggars and lepers to show
that the vessel was empty, and to give sound of their

CLARIDIANA, heroine of an old romance.

CLARISSIMO, Venetian noble.

CLEM, starve.

CLICKET, latch.

CLIM O' THE CLOUGHS, etc., wordy heroes of romance.

CLIMATE, country.

CLOSE, secret, private; secretive.

CLOSENESS, secrecy.

CLOTH, arras, hangings.

CLOUT, mark shot at, bull's eye.

CLOWN, countryman, clodhopper.

COACH-LEAVES, folding blinds.

COALS, "bear no --," submit to no affront.

COAT-ARMOUR, coat of arms.

COAT-CARD, court-card.

COB-HERRING, HERRING-COB, a young herring.

COB-SWAN, male swan.

COCK-A-HOOP, denoting unstinted jollity; thought to
be derived from turning on the tap that all might
drink to the full of the flowing liquor.

COCKATRICE, reptile supposed to be produced from a
cock's egg and to kill by its eye -- used as a term
of reproach for a woman.

COCK-BRAINED, giddy, wild.

COCKER, pamper.

COCKSCOMB, fool's cap.

COCKSTONE, stone said to be found in a cock's
gizzard, and to possess particular virtues.

CODLING, softening by boiling.

COFFIN, raised crust of a pie.

COG, cheat, wheedle.

COIL, turmoil, confusion, ado.

COKELY, master of a puppet-show (Whalley).

COKES, fool, gull.

COLD-CONCEITED, having cold opinion of, coldly
affected towards.

COLE-HARBOUR, a retreat for people of all sorts.

COLLECTION, composure; deduction.

COLLOP, small slice, piece of flesh.

COLLY, blacken.

COLOUR, pretext.

COLOURS, "fear no --," no enemy (quibble).

COLSTAFF, cowlstaff, pole for carrying a cowl=tub.

COME ABOUT, charge, turn round.

COMFORTABLE BREAD, spiced gingerbread.

COMING, forward, ready to respond, complaisant.

COMMENT, commentary; "sometime it is taken for a lie
or fayned tale" (Bullokar, 1616).

COMMODITY, "current for --," allusion to practice of
money-lenders, who forced the borrower to take part of
the loan in the shape of worthless goods on which the
latter had to make money if he could.


COMPASS, "in --," within the range, sphere.

COMPLEMENT, completion, completement; anything
required for the perfecting or carrying out of
a person or affair; accomplishment.

COMPLEXION, natural disposition, constitution.

COMPLIMENT, See Complement.

COMPLIMENTARIES, masters of accomplishments.

COMPOSITION, constitution; agreement, contract.

COMPOSURE, composition.

COMPTER, COUNTER, debtors' prison.

CONCEALMENT, a certain amount of church property
had been retained at the dissolution of the monasteries;
Elizabeth sent commissioners to search it out, and the
courtiers begged for it.

CONCEIT, idea, fancy, witty invention, conception, opinion.

CONCEIT, apprehend.

CONCEITED, fancifully, ingeniously devised or conceived;
possessed of intelligence, witty, ingenious (hence well
conceited, etc.); disposed to joke; of opinion, possessed
of an idea.

CONCEIVE, understand.

CONCENT, harmony, agreement.

CONCLUDE, infer, prove.

CONCOCT, assimilate, digest.

CONDEN'T, probably conducted.

CONDUCT, escort, conductor.


CONFECT, sweetmeat.

CONFER, compare.

CONGIES, bows.

CONNIVE, give a look, wink, of secret intelligence.

CONSORT, company, concert.

CONSTANCY, fidelity, ardour, persistence.

CONSTANT, confirmed, persistent, faithful.

CONSTANTLY, firmly, persistently.

CONTEND, strive.

CONTINENT, holding together.

CONTROL (the point), bear or beat down.

CONVENT, assembly, meeting.

CONVERT, turn (oneself).

CONVEY, transmit from one to another.

CONVINCE, evince, prove; overcome, overpower; convict.

COP, head, top; tuft on head of birds; "a cop" may
have reference to one or other meaning; Gifford and
others interpret as "conical, terminating in a point."

COPE-MAN, chapman.

COPESMATE, companion.

COPY (Lat. copia), abundance, copiousness.

CORN ("powder --"), grain.

COROLLARY, finishing part or touch.

CORSIVE, corrosive.

CORTINE, curtain, (arch.) wall between two towers, etc.

CORYAT, famous for his travels, published as "Coryat's

COSSET, pet lamb, pet.

COSTARD, head.

COSTARD-MONGER, apple-seller, coster-monger.

COSTS, ribs.

COTE, hut.

COTHURNAL, from "cothurnus," a particular boot worn by
actors in Greek tragedy.

COTQUEAN, hussy.

COUNSEL, secret.

COUNTENANCE, means necessary for support; credit, standing.

COUNTER.  See Compter.

COUNTER, pieces of metal or ivory for calculating at play.

COUNTER, "hunt --," follow scent in reverse direction.

COUNTERFEIT, false coin.

COUNTERPANE, one part or counterpart of a deed or indenture.

COUNTERPOINT, opposite, contrary point.

COURT-DISH, a kind of drinking-cup (Halliwell); N.E.D.
quotes from Bp. Goodman's "Court of James I.": "The
king...caused his carver to cut him out a court-dish,
that is, something of every dish, which he sent him as
part of his reversion," but this does not sound like
short allowance or small receptacle.

COURT-DOR, fool.

COURTEAU, curtal, small horse with docked tail.

COURTSHIP, courtliness.

COVETISE, avarice.

COWSHARD, cow dung.

COXCOMB, fool's cap, fool.

COY, shrink; disdain.

COYSTREL, low varlet.

COZEN, cheat.

CRACK, lively young rogue, wag.

CRACK, crack up, boast; come to grief.

CRAMBE, game of crambo, in which the players find
rhymes for a given word.

CRANCH, craunch.

CRANION, spider-like; also fairy appellation for a
fly (Gifford, who refers to lines in Drayton's

CRIMP, game at cards.

CRINCLE, draw back, turn aside.

CRISPED, with curled or waved hair.

CROP, gather, reap.

CROPSHIRE, a kind of herring.  (See N.E.D.)

CROSS, any piece of money, many coins being stamped
with a cross.

CROSS AND PILE, heads and tails.

CROSSLET, crucible.

CROWD, fiddle.

CRUDITIES, undigested matter.

CRUMP, curl up.

CRUSADO, Portuguese gold coin, marked with a cross.

CRY ("he that cried Italian"), "speak in a musical
cadence," intone, or declaim (?); cry up.

CUCKING-STOOL, used for the ducking of scolds, etc.

CUCURBITE, a gourd-shaped vessel used for distillation.

CUERPO, "in --," in undress.

CULLICE, broth.

CULLION, base fellow, coward.

CULLISEN, badge worn on their arm by servants.

CULVERIN, kind of cannon.

CUNNING, skill.

CUNNING, skilful.

CUNNING-MAN, fortune-teller.

CURE, care for.

CURIOUS(LY), scrupulous, particular; elaborate,
elegant(ly), dainty(ly) (hence "in curious").

CURST, shrewish, mischievous.

CURTAL, dog with docked tail, of inferior sort.

CUSTARD, "quaking --," " -- politic," reference to
a large custard which formed part of a city feast
and afforded huge entertainment, for the fool jumped
into it, and other like tricks were played.  (See
"All's Well, etc." ii. 5, 40.)

CUTWORK, embroidery, open-work.

CYPRES (CYPRUS) (quibble), cypress (or cyprus) being
a transparent material, and when black used for mourning.

DAGGER (" -- frumety"), name of tavern.

DARGISON, apparently some person known in ballad or tale.

DAUPHIN MY BOY, refrain of old comic song.

DAW, daunt.

DEAD LIFT, desperate emergency.

DEAR, applied to that which in any way touches us nearly.

DECLINE, turn off from; turn away, aside.

DEFALK, deduct, abate.

DEFEND, forbid.

DEGENEROUS, degenerate.

DEGREES, steps.

DELATE, accuse.

DEMI-CULVERIN, cannon carrying a ball of about ten pounds.

DENIER, the smallest possible coin, being the twelfth
part of a sou.

DEPART, part with.

DEPENDANCE, ground of quarrel in duello language.

DESERT, reward.


DESPERATE, rash, reckless.

DETECT, allow to be detected, betray, inform against.

DETERMINE, terminate.

DETRACT, draw back, refuse.

DEVICE, masque, show; a thing moved by wires,
etc., puppet.

DEVISE, exact in every particular.

DEVISED, invented.

DIAPASM, powdered aromatic herbs, made into balls
of perfumed paste.  (See Pomander.)

DIBBLE, (?) moustache (N.E.D.); (?) dagger (Cunningham).

DIFFUSED, disordered, scattered, irregular.

DIGHT, dressed.

DILDO, refrain of popular songs; vague term of low meaning.

DIMBLE, dingle, ravine.

DIMENSUM, stated allowance.

DISBASE, debase.

DISCERN, distinguish, show a difference between.

DISCHARGE, settle for.

DISCIPLINE, reformation; ecclesiastical system.

DISCLAIM, renounce all part in.

DISCOURSE, process of reasoning, reasoning faculty.

DISCOURTSHIP, discourtesy.

DISCOVER, betray, reveal; display.

DISFAVOUR, disfigure.

DISPARAGEMENT, legal term applied to the unfitness
in any way of a marriage arranged for in the case
of wards.

DISPENSE WITH, grant dispensation for.

DISPLAY, extend.

DIS'PLE, discipline, teach by the whip.

DISPOSED, inclined to merriment.

DISPOSURE, disposal.

DISPRISE, depreciate.

DISPUNCT, not punctilious.


DISSOLVED, enervated by grief.

DISTANCE, (?) proper measure.

DISTASTE, offence, cause of offence.

DISTASTE, render distasteful.

DISTEMPERED, upset, out of humour.

DIVISION (mus.), variation, modulation.

DOG-BOLT, term of contempt.

DOLE, given in dole, charity.

DOLE OF FACES, distribution of grimaces.

DOOM, verdict, sentence.

DOP, dip, low bow.

DOR, beetle, buzzing insect, drone, idler.

DOR, (?) buzz; "give the --," make a fool of.

DOSSER, pannier, basket.

DOTES, endowments, qualities.

DOTTEREL, plover; gull, fool.

DOUBLE, behave deceitfully.

DOXY, wench, mistress.

DRACHM, Greek silver coin.

DRESS, groom, curry.

DRESSING, coiffure.

DRIFT, intention.

DRYFOOT, track by mere scent of foot.

DUCKING, punishment for minor offences.

DUILL, grieve.

DUMPS, melancholy, originally a mournful melody.

DURINDANA, Orlando's sword.

DWINDLE, shrink away, be overawed.

EAN, yean, bring forth young.

EASINESS, readiness.

EBOLITION, ebullition.

EDGE, sword.

EECH, eke.

EGREGIOUS, eminently excellent.

EKE, also, moreover.

E-LA, highest note in the scale.

EGGS ON THE SPIT, important business on hand.

ELF-LOCK, tangled hair, supposed to be the work of elves.

EMMET, ant.

ENGAGE, involve.

ENGHLE.  See Ingle.

ENGHLE, cajole; fondle.

ENGIN(E), device, contrivance; agent; ingenuity, wit.

ENGINER, engineer, deviser, plotter.

ENGINOUS, crafty, full of devices; witty, ingenious.

ENGROSS, monopolise.

ENS, an existing thing, a substance.

ENSIGNS, tokens, wounds.

ENSURE, assure.

ENTERTAIN, take into service.

ENTREAT, plead.

ENTREATY, entertainment.

ENTRY, place where a deer has lately passed.

ENVOY, denouement, conclusion.

ENVY, spite, calumny, dislike, odium.

EPHEMERIDES, calendars.

EQUAL, just, impartial.

ERECTION, elevation in esteem.

ERINGO, candied root of the sea-holly, formerly
used as a sweetmeat and aphrodisiac.

ERRANT, arrant.

ESSENTIATE, become assimilated.


ESTRICH, ostrich.

ETHNIC, heathen.

EURIPUS, flux and reflux.

EVEN, just equable.

EVENT, fate, issue.

EVENT(ED), issue(d).

EVERT, overturn.

EXACUATE, sharpen.

EXAMPLESS, without example or parallel.

EXCALIBUR, King Arthur's sword.

EXEMPLIFY, make an example of.

EXEMPT, separate, exclude.

EXEQUIES, obsequies.

EXHALE, drag out.

EXHIBITION, allowance for keep, pocket-money.

EXORBITANT, exceeding limits of propriety or law,

EXORNATION, ornament.

EXPECT, wait.

EXPIATE, terminate.

EXPLICATE, explain, unfold.

EXTEMPORAL, extempore, unpremeditated.

EXTRACTION, essence.

EXTRAORDINARY, employed for a special or temporary purpose.

EXTRUDE, expel.

EYE, "in --," in view.

EYEBRIGHT, (?) a malt liquor in which the herb of
this name was infused, or a person who sold the same

EYE-TINGE, least shade or gleam.

FACE, appearance.

FACES ABOUT, military word of command.

FACINOROUS, extremely wicked.

FACKINGS, faith.

FACT, deed, act, crime.

FACTIOUS, seditious, belonging to a party, given to party feeling.

FAECES, dregs.

FAGIOLI, French beans.

FAIN, forced, necessitated.

FAITHFUL, believing.

FALL, ruff or band turned back on the shoulders; or, veil.

FALSIFY, feign (fencing term).

FAME, report.

FAMILIAR, attendant spirit.

FANTASTICAL, capricious, whimsical.

FARCE, stuff.

FAR-FET.  See Fet.

FARTHINGAL, hooped petticoat.

FAUCET, tapster.

FAULT, lack; loss, break in line of scent; "for --," in default of.

FAUTOR, partisan.

FAYLES, old table game similar to backgammon.

FEAR(ED), affright(ed).

FEAT, activity, operation; deed, action.

FEAT, elegant, trim.

FEE, "in --" by feudal obligation.

FEIZE, beat, belabour.

FELLOW, term of contempt.

FENNEL, emblem of flattery.

FERE, companion, fellow.

FERN-SEED, supposed to have power of rendering invisible.

FET, fetched.

FETCH, trick.

FEUTERER (Fr. vautrier), dog-keeper.

FEWMETS, dung.

FICO, fig.

FIGGUM, (?) jugglery.

FIGMENT, fiction, invention.

FIRK, frisk, move suddenly, or in jerks; "-- up,"
stir up, rouse; "firks mad," suddenly behaves like
a madman.

FIT, pay one out, punish.

FITNESS, readiness.

FITTON (FITTEN), lie, invention.

FIVE-AND-FIFTY, "highest number to stand on at
primero" (Gifford).

FLAG, to fly low and waveringly.

FLAGON CHAIN, for hanging a smelling-bottle (Fr.
flacon) round the neck (?).  (See N.E.D.).

FLAP-DRAGON, game similar to snap-dragon.

FLASKET, some kind of basket.

FLAW, sudden gust or squall of wind.

FLAWN, custard.

FLEA, catch fleas.

FLEER, sneer, laugh derisively.

FLESH, feed a hawk or dog with flesh to incite
it to the chase; initiate in blood-shed; satiate.


FLIGHT, light arrow.


FLOUT, mock, speak and act contemptuously.

FLOWERS, pulverised substance.

FLY, familiar spirit.

FOIL, weapon used in fencing; that which
sets anything off to advantage.

FOIST, cut-purse, sharper.

FOND(LY), foolish(ly).

FOOT-CLOTH, housings of ornamental cloth which
hung down on either side a horse to the ground.

FOOTING, foothold; footstep; dancing.

FOPPERY, foolery.

FOR, "-- failing," for fear of failing.

FORBEAR, bear with; abstain from.

FORCE, "hunt at --," run the game down with dogs.

FOREHEAD, modesty; face, assurance, effrontery.

FORESLOW, delay.

FORESPEAK, bewitch; foretell.

FORETOP, front lock of hair which fashion
required to be worn upright.

FORGED, fabricated.

FORM, state formally.

FORMAL, shapely; normal; conventional.

FORTHCOMING, produced when required.

FOUNDER, disable with over-riding.

FOURM, form, lair.

FOX, sword.

FRAIL, rush basket in which figs or raisins
were packed.

FRAMPULL, peevish, sour-tempered.

FRAPLER, blusterer, wrangler.

FRAYING, "a stag is said to fray his head when he
rubs it against a tree to...cause the outward coat
of the new horns to fall off" (Gifford).

FREIGHT (of the gazetti), burden (of the newspapers).


FRICACE, rubbing.

FRICATRICE, woman of low character.

FRIPPERY, old clothes shop.

FROCK, smock-frock.

FROLICS, (?) humorous verses circulated at a feast
(N.E.D.); couplets wrapped round sweetmeats (Cunningham).

FRONTLESS, shameless.

FROTED, rubbed.

FRUMETY, hulled wheat boiled in milk and spiced.

FRUMP, flout, sneer.

FUCUS, dye.

FUGEAND, (?) figent: fidgety, restless (N.E.D.).

FULLAM, false dice.

FULMART, polecat.

FULSOME, foul, offensive.

FURIBUND, raging, furious.

GALLEY-FOIST, city-barge, used on Lord Mayor's Day,
when he was sworn into his office at Westminster

GALLIARD, lively dance in triple time.

GAPE, be eager after.

GARAGANTUA, Rabelais' giant.

GARB, sheaf (Fr. gerbe); manner, fashion, behaviour.

GARD, guard, trimming, gold or silver lace, or other

GARDED, faced or trimmed.


GAVEL-KIND, name of a land-tenure existing chiefly in
Kent; from 16th century often used to denote custom
of dividing a deceased man's property equally among
his sons (N.E.D.).

GAZETTE, small Venetian coin worth about three-farthings.

GEANCE, jaunt, errand.

GEAR (GEER), stuff, matter, affair.

GELID, frozen.

GEMONIES, steps from which the bodies of criminals
were thrown into the river.

GENERAL, free, affable.

GENIUS, attendant spirit.

GENTRY, gentlemen; manners characteristic of gentry,
good breeding.

GIB-CAT, tom-cat.

GIGANTOMACHIZE, start a giants' war.

GIGLOT, wanton.

GIMBLET, gimlet.

GING, gang.

GLASS ("taking in of shadows, etc."), crystal or beryl.

GLEEK, card game played by three; party of three, trio;
side glance.

GLICK (GLEEK), jest, gibe.

GLIDDER, glaze.

GLORIOUSLY, of vain glory.

GODWIT, bird of the snipe family.

GOLD-END-MAN, a buyer of broken gold and silver.

GOLL, hand.

GONFALIONIER, standard-bearer, chief magistrate, etc.

GOOD, sound in credit.

GOOD-YEAR, good luck.

GOOSE-TURD, colour of.  (See Turd).

GORCROW, carrion crow.

GORGET, neck armour.

GOSSIP, godfather.

GOWKED, from "gowk," to stand staring and gaping like
a fool.

GRANNAM, grandam.

GRASS, (?) grease, fat.

GRATEFUL, agreeable, welcome.

GRATIFY, give thanks to.

GRATITUDE, gratuity.

GRATULATE, welcome, congratulate.

GRAVITY, dignity.

GRAY, badger.

GRICE, cub.

GRIEF, grievance.

GRIPE, vulture, griffin.

GRIPE'S EGG, vessel in shape of.

GROAT, fourpence.

GROGRAN, coarse stuff made of silk and mohair, or of
coarse silk.

GROOM-PORTER, officer in the royal household.

GROPE, handle, probe.

GROUND, pit (hence "grounded judgments").

GUARD, caution, heed.

GUARDANT, heraldic term: turning the head only.

GUILDER, Dutch coin worth about 4d.

GULES, gullet, throat; heraldic term for red.

GULL, simpleton, dupe.

GUST, taste.

HAB NAB, by, on, chance.

HABERGEON, coat of mail.

HAGGARD, wild female hawk; hence coy, wild.

HALBERD, combination of lance and battle-axe.

HALL, "a --!" a cry to clear the room for the dancers.

HANDSEL, first money taken.

HANGER, loop or strap on a sword-belt from which the
sword was suspended.

HAP, fortune, luck.

HAPPILY, haply.

HAPPINESS, appropriateness, fitness.

HAPPY, rich.

HARBOUR, track, trace (an animal) to its shelter.

HARD-FAVOURED, harsh-featured.

HARPOCRATES, Horus the child, son of Osiris, figured
with a finger pointing to his mouth, indicative of

HARRINGTON, a patent was granted to Lord H. for the
coinage of tokens (q.v.).

HARROT, herald.

HARRY NICHOLAS, founder of a community called the
"Family of Love."

HAY, net for catching rabbits, etc.

HAY! (Ital. hai!), you have it (a fencing term).

HAY IN HIS HORN, ill-tempered person.

HAZARD, game at dice; that which is staked.

HEAD, "first --," young deer with antlers first
sprouting; fig. a newly-ennobled man.

HEADBOROUGH, constable.

HEARKEN AFTER, inquire; "hearken out," find, search out.

HEARTEN, encourage.

HEAVEN AND HELL ("Alchemist"), names of taverns.

HECTIC, fever.

HEDGE IN, include.

HELM, upper part of a retort.

HER'NSEW, hernshaw, heron.

HIERONIMO (JERONIMO), hero of Kyd's "Spanish Tragedy."

HOBBY, nag.

HOBBY-HORSE, imitation horse of some light material,
fastened round the waist of the morrice-dancer, who
imitated the movements of a skittish horse.


HOIDEN, hoyden, formerly applied to both sexes (ancient
term for leveret?  Gifford).

HOLLAND, name of two famous chemists.

HONE AND HONERO, wailing expressions of lament or discontent.

HOOD-WINK'D, blindfolded.

HORARY, hourly.

HORN-MAD, stark mad (quibble).

HORN-THUMB, cut-purses were in the habit of wearing a horn
shield on the thumb.

HORSE-BREAD-EATING, horses were often fed on coarse bread.

HORSE-COURSER, horse-dealer.

HOSPITAL, Christ's Hospital.

HOWLEGLAS, Eulenspiegel, the hero of a popular German
tale which relates his buffooneries and knavish tricks.

HUFF, hectoring, arrogance.

HUFF IT, swagger.

HUISHER (Fr. huissier), usher.

HUM, beer and spirits mixed together.

HUMANITIAN, humanist, scholar.

HUMOROUS, capricious, moody, out of humour; moist.

HUMOUR, a word used in and out of season in the time
of Shakespeare and Ben Jonson, and ridiculed by both.

HUMOURS, manners.

HUMPHREY, DUKE, those who were dinnerless spent the
dinner-hour in a part of St. Paul's where stood a
monument said to be that of the duke's; hence "dine
with Duke Humphrey," to go hungry.

HURTLESS, harmless.

IDLE, useless, unprofitable.

ILL-AFFECTED, ill-disposed.

ILL-HABITED, unhealthy.

ILLUSTRATE, illuminate.

IMBIBITION, saturation, steeping.

IMBROCATA, fencing term: a thrust in tierce.

IMPAIR, impairment.

IMPART, give money.

IMPARTER, any one ready to be cheated and to part
with his money.

IMPEACH, damage.

IMPERTINENCIES, irrelevancies.

IMPERTINENT(LY), irrelevant(ly), without reason or purpose.

IMPOSITION, duty imposed by.

IMPOTENTLY, beyond power of control.

IMPRESS, money in advance.

IMPULSION, incitement.

IN AND IN, a game played by two or three persons
with four dice.

INCENSE, incite, stir up.

INCERATION, act of covering with wax; or reducing
a substance to softness of wax.

INCH, "to their --es," according to their stature,

INCH-PIN, sweet-bread.

INCONVENIENCE, inconsistency, absurdity.

INCONY, delicate, rare (used as a term of affection).

INCUBEE, incubus.

INCUBUS, evil spirit that oppresses us in sleep, nightmare.

INCURIOUS, unfastidious, uncritical.

INDENT, enter into engagement.

INDIFFERENT, tolerable, passable.

INDIGESTED, shapeless, chaotic.

INDUCE, introduce.

INDUE, supply.

INEXORABLE, relentless.

INFANTED, born, produced.

INFLAME, augment charge.

INGENIOUS, used indiscriminantly for ingenuous;
intelligent, talented.

INGENUITY, ingenuousness.

INGENUOUS, generous.

INGINE.  See Engin.

INGINER, engineer.  (See Enginer).

INGLE, OR ENGHLE, bosom friend, intimate, minion.

INHABITABLE, uninhabitable.

INJURY, insult, affront.

IN-MATE, resident, indwelling.

INNATE, natural.

INNOCENT, simpleton.

INQUEST, jury, or other official body of inquiry.


INSTANT, immediate.

INSTRUMENT, legal document.

INSURE, assure.

INTEGRATE, complete, perfect.

INTELLIGENCE, secret information, news.

INTEND, note carefully, attend, give ear to, be
occupied with.

INTENDMENT, intention.

INTENT, intention, wish.

INTENTION, concentration of attention or gaze.

INTENTIVE, attentive.

INTERESSED, implicated.

INTRUDE, bring in forcibly or without leave.

INVINCIBLY, invisibly.

INWARD, intimate.

IRPE (uncertain), "a fantastic grimace, or contortion
of the body: (Gifford).

JACK, Jack o' the clock, automaton figure that strikes
the hour; Jack-a-lent, puppet thrown at in Lent.

JACK, key of a virginal.

JACOB'S STAFF, an instrument for taking altitudes and

JADE, befool.

JEALOUSY, JEALOUS, suspicion, suspicious.

JERKING, lashing.

JEW'S TRUMP, Jew's harp.

JIG, merry ballad or tune; a fanciful dialogue or
light comic act introduced at the end or during an
interlude of a play.

JOINED (JOINT)-STOOL, folding stool.

JOLL, jowl.

JOLTHEAD, blockhead.

JUMP, agree, tally.

JUST YEAR, no one was capable of the consulship until
he was forty-three.

KELL, cocoon.

KELLY, an alchemist.

KEMB, comb.

KEMIA, vessel for distillation.

KIBE, chap, sore.

KILDERKIN, small barrel.

KILL, kiln.

KIND, nature; species; "do one's --," act according
to one's nature.

KIRTLE, woman's gown of jacket and petticoat.

KISS OR DRINK AFORE ME, "this is a familiar expression,
employed when what the speaker is just about to say is
anticipated by another" (Gifford).

KIT, fiddle.

KNACK, snap, click.

KNIPPER-DOLING, a well-known Anabaptist.

KNITTING CUP, marriage cup.

KNOCKING, striking, weighty.

KNOT, company, band; a sandpiper or robin snipe (Tringa
canutus); flower-bed laid out in fanciful design.

KURSINED, KYRSIN, christened.

LABOURED, wrought with labour and care.

LADE, load(ed).

LADING, load.

LAID, plotted.

LANCE-KNIGHT (Lanzknecht), a German mercenary foot-soldier.

LAP, fold.

LAR, household god.

LARD, garnish.

LARGE, abundant.

LARUM, alarum, call to arms.

LATTICE, tavern windows were furnished with lattices of
various colours.

LAUNDER, to wash gold in aqua regia, so as imperceptibly
to extract some of it.

LAVE, ladle, bale.

LAW, "give --," give a start (term of chase).

LAXATIVE, loose.

LAY ABOARD, run alongside generally with intent to board.

LEAGUER, siege, or camp of besieging army.

LEASING, lying.

LEAVE, leave off, desist.

LEER, leering or "empty, hence, perhaps, leer horse,
a horse without a rider; leer is an adjective meaning
uncontrolled, hence 'leer drunkards'" (Halliwell);
according to Nares, a leer (empty) horse meant also a
led horse; leeward, left.

LEESE, lose.

LEGS, "make --," do obeisance.

LEIGER, resident representative.

LEIGERITY, legerdemain.

LEMMA, subject proposed, or title of the epigram.

LENTER, slower.

LET, hinder.

LET, hindrance.

LEVEL COIL, a rough which one hunted
another from his seat.  Hence used for any noisy
riot (Halliwell).

LEWD, ignorant.

LEYSTALLS, receptacles of filth.

LIBERAL, ample.

LIEGER, ledger, register.

LIFT(ING), steal(ing); theft.

LIGHT, alight.

LIGHTLY, commonly, usually, often.

LIKE, please.

LIKELY, agreeable, pleasing.

LIME-HOUND, leash-, blood-hound.

LIMMER, vile, worthless.

LIN, leave off.

Line, "by --," by rule.

LINSTOCK, staff to stick in the ground, with forked
head to hold a lighted match for firing cannon.

LIQUID, clear.

LIST, listen, hark; like, please.

LIVERY, legal term, delivery of the possession, etc.

LOGGET, small log, stick.

LOOSE, solution; upshot, issue; release of an arrow.

LOSE, give over, desist from; waste.

LOUTING, bowing, cringing.

LUCULENT, bright of beauty.

LUDGATHIANS, dealers on Ludgate Hill.

LURCH, rob, cheat.

LUTE, to close a vessel with some kind of cement.

MACK, unmeaning expletive.

MADGE-HOWLET or OWL, barn-owl.

MAIM, hurt, injury.

MAIN, chief concern (used as a quibble on heraldic
term for "hand").

MAINPRISE, becoming surety for a prisoner so as to
procure his release.

MAINTENANCE, giving aid, or abetting.

MAKE, mate.

MAKE, MADE, acquaint with business, prepare(d), instruct(ed).

MALLANDERS, disease of horses.

MALT HORSE, dray horse.

MAMMET, puppet.

MAMMOTHREPT, spoiled child.

MANAGE, control (term used for breaking-in horses);
handling, administration.

MANGO, slave-dealer.

MANGONISE, polish up for sale.

MANIPLES, bundles, handfuls.

MANKIND, masculine, like a virago.

MANKIND, humanity.

MAPLE FACE, spotted face (N.E.D.).

MARCHPANE, a confection of almonds, sugar, etc.

MARK, "fly to the --," "generally said of a goshawk
when, having 'put in' a covey of partridges, she takes
stand, marking the spot where they disappeared from
view until the falconer arrives to put them out to her"
(Harting, Bibl. Accip. Gloss. 226).

MARLE, marvel.

MARROW-BONE MAN, one often on his knees for prayer.

MARRY! exclamation derived from the Virgin's name.

MARRY GIP, "probably originated from By Mary Gipcy =
St. Mary of Egypt, (N.E.D.).

MARTAGAN, Turk's cap lily.

MARYHINCHCO, stringhalt.

MASORETH, Masora, correct form of the scriptural text
according to Hebrew tradition.

MASS, abb. for master.

MAUND, beg.

MAUTHER, girl, maid.

MEAN, moderation.

MEASURE, dance, more especially a stately one.

MEAT, "carry -- in one's mouth," be a source of money
or entertainment.

MEATH, metheglin.

MECHANICAL, belonging to mechanics, mean, vulgar.

MEDITERRANEO, middle aisle of St. Paul's, a general
resort for business and amusement.

MEET WITH, even with.

MELICOTTON, a late kind of peach.

MENSTRUE, solvent.

MERCAT, market.

MERD, excrement.

MERE, undiluted; absolute, unmitigated.

MESS, party of four.

METHEGLIN, fermented liquor, of which one ingredient
was honey.

METOPOSCOPY, study of physiognomy.

MIDDLING GOSSIP, go-between.

MIGNIARD, dainty, delicate.

MILE-END, training-ground of the city.

MINE-MEN, sappers.

MINION, form of cannon.

MINSITIVE, (?) mincing, affected (N.E.D.).

MISCELLANY MADAM, "a female trader in miscellaneous
articles; a dealer in trinkets or ornaments of various
kinds, such as kept shops in the New Exchange" (Nares).

MISCELLINE, mixed grain; medley.

MISCONCEIT, misconception.

MISPRISE, MISPRISION, mistake, misunderstanding.

MISTAKE AWAY, carry away as if by mistake.

MITHRIDATE, an antidote against poison.

MOCCINIGO, small Venetian coin, worth about ninepence.

MODERN, in the mode; ordinary, commonplace.

MOMENT, force or influence of value.

MONTANTO, upward stroke.

MONTH'S MIND, violent desire.

MOORISH, like a moor or waste.

MORGLAY, sword of Bevis of Southampton.

MORRICE-DANCE, dance on May Day, etc., in which
certain personages were represented.


MORT-MAL, old sore, gangrene.

MOSCADINO, confection flavoured with musk.

MOTHER, Hysterica passio.

MOTION, proposal, request; puppet, puppet-show;
"one of the small figures on the face of a large
clock which was moved by the vibration of the
pendulum" (Whalley).

MOTION, suggest, propose.

MOTLEY, parti-coloured dress of a fool; hence
used to signify pertaining to, or like, a fool.

MOTTE, motto.

MOURNIVAL, set of four aces or court cards in a hand;
a quartette.

MOW, setord hay or sheaves of grain.

MUCH! expressive of irony and incredulity.

MUCKINDER, handkerchief.

MULE, "born to ride on --," judges or serjeants-at-law
formerly rode on mules when going in state to Westminster

MULLETS, small pincers.

MUM-CHANCE, game of chance, played in silence.

MUN, must.

MUREY, dark crimson red.


MUSE, wonder.

MUSICAL, in harmony.

MUSS, mouse; scramble.

MYROBOLANE, foreign conserve, "a dried plum, brought
from the Indies."

MYSTERY, art, trade, profession.

NAIL, "to the --" (ad unguem), to perfection, to the
very utmost.

NATIVE, natural.

NEAT, cattle.

NEAT, smartly apparelled; unmixed; dainty.

NEATLY, neatly finished.

NEATNESS, elegance.

NEIS, nose, scent.

NEUF (NEAF, NEIF), fist.

NEUFT, newt.

NIAISE, foolish, inexperienced person.

NICE, fastidious, trivial, finical, scrupulous.

NICENESS, fastidiousness.

NICK, exact amount; right moment; "set in the --,"
meaning uncertain.

NICE, suit, fit; hit, seize the right moment, etc.,
exactly hit on, hit off.

NOBLE, gold coin worth 6s. 8d.

NOCENT, harmful.

NIL, not will.

NOISE, company of musicians.

NOMENTACK, an Indian chief from Virginia.

NONES, nonce.

NOTABLE, egregious.

NOTE, sign, token.

NOUGHT, "be --," go to the devil, be hanged, etc.

NOWT-HEAD, blockhead.

NUMBER, rhythm.

NUPSON, oaf, simpleton.

OADE, woad.

OBARNI, preparation of mead.

OBJECT, oppose; expose; interpose.

OBLATRANT, barking, railing.

OBNOXIOUS, liable, exposed; offensive.

OBSERVANCE, homage, devoted service.

OBSERVANT, attentive, obsequious.

OBSERVE, show deference, respect.

OBSERVER, one who shows deference, or waits upon another.

OBSTANCY, legal phrase, "juridical opposition."

OBSTREPEROUS, clamorous, vociferous.

OBSTUPEFACT, stupefied.

ODLING, (?) "must have some relation to tricking and
cheating" (Nares).

OMINOUS, deadly, fatal.

ONCE, at once; for good and all; used also for additional

ONLY, pre-eminent, special.

OPEN, make public; expound.

OPPILATION, obstruction.

OPPONE, oppose.

OPPOSITE, antagonist.

OPPRESS, suppress.

ORIGINOUS, native.

ORT, remnant, scrap.

OUT, "to be --," to have forgotten one's part;
not at one with each other.

OUTCRY, sale by auction.

OUTRECUIDANCE, arrogance, presumption.

OUTSPEAK, speak more than.

OVERPARTED, given too difficult a part to play.

OWLSPIEGEL.  See Howleglass.

OYEZ!  (O YES!), hear ye! call of the public crier
when about to make a proclamation.

PACKING PENNY, "give a --," dismiss, send packing.

PAD, highway.

PAD-HORSE, road-horse.

PAINED (PANED) SLOPS, full breeches made of strips
of different colour and material.

PAINFUL, diligent, painstaking.

PAINT, blush.

PALINODE, ode of recantation.

PALL, weaken, dim, make stale.

PALM, triumph.

PAN, skirt of dress or coat.

PANNEL, pad, or rough kind of saddle.

PANNIER-ALLY, inhabited by tripe-sellers.

PANNIER-MAN, hawker; a man employed about the inns of
court to bring in provisions, set the table, etc.

PANTOFLE, indoor shoe, slipper.

PARAMENTOS, fine trappings.

PARANOMASIE, a play upon words.

PARANTORY, (?) peremptory.

PARCEL, particle, fragment (used contemptuously); article.

PARCEL, part, partly.

PARCEL-POET, poetaster.

PARERGA, subordinate matters.

PARGET, to paint or plaster the face.

PARLE, parley.

PARLOUS, clever, shrewd.

PART, apportion.

PARTAKE, participate in.

PARTED, endowed, talented.

PARTICULAR, individual person.

PARTIZAN, kind of halberd.

PARTRICH, partridge.

PARTS, qualities, endowments.

PASH, dash, smash.

PASS, care, trouble oneself.

PASSADO, fencing term: a thrust.

PASSAGE, game at dice.

PASSINGLY, exceedingly.

PASSION, effect caused by external agency.

PASSION, "in --," in so melancholy a tone, so pathetically.

PATOUN, (?) Fr. Paton, pellet of dough; perhaps the
"moulding of the tobacco...for the pipe" (Gifford); (?)
variant of Petun, South American name of tobacco.

PATRICO, the recorder, priest, orator of strolling
beggars or gipsies.

PATTEN, shoe with wooden sole; "go --," keep step with,

PAUCA VERBA, few words.

PAVIN, a stately dance.

PEACE, "with my master's --," by leave, favour.

PECULIAR, individual, single.

PEDANT, teacher of the languages.

PEEL, baker's shovel.

PEEP, speak in a small or shrill voice.

PEEVISH(LY), foolish(ly), capricious(ly); childish(ly).

PELICAN, a retort fitted with tube or tubes, for
continuous distillation.

PENCIL, small tuft of hair.

PERDUE, soldier accustomed to hazardous service.

PEREMPTORY, resolute, bold; imperious; thorough, utter,

PERIMETER, circumference of a figure.

PERIOD, limit, end.

PERK, perk up.

PERPETUANA, "this seems to be that glossy kind of stuff
now called everlasting, and anciently worn by serjeants
and other city officers" (Gifford).

PERSPECTIVE, a view, scene or scenery; an optical device
which gave a distortion to the picture unless seen from a
particular point; a relief, modelled to produce an
optical illusion.

PERSPICIL, optic glass.

PERSTRINGE, criticise, censure.

PERSUADE, inculcate, commend.

PERSWAY, mitigate.

PERTINACY, pertinacity.

PESTLING, pounding, pulverising, like a pestle.

PETASUS, broad-brimmed hat or winged cap worn by Mercury.

PETITIONARY, supplicatory.

PETRONEL, a kind of carbine or light gun carried by horsemen.

PETULANT, pert, insolent.

PHERE.  See Fere.

PHLEGMA, watery distilled liquor (old chem. "water").

PHRENETIC, madman.

PICARDIL, stiff upright collar fastened on to the coat

PICT-HATCH, disreputable quarter of London.

PIECE, person, used for woman or girl; a gold coin
worth in Jonson's time 20s. or 22s.

PIECES OF EIGHT, Spanish coin: piastre equal to eight

PIED, variegated.

PIE-POUDRES (Fr. pied-poudreux, dusty-foot), court held
at fairs to administer justice to itinerant vendors and

PILCHER, term of contempt; one who wore a buff or leather
jerkin, as did the serjeants of the counter; a pilferer.

PILED, pilled, peeled, bald.

PILL'D, polled, fleeced.

PIMLICO, "sometimes spoken of as a person -- perhaps
master of a house famous for a particular ale" (Gifford).

PINE, afflict, distress.

PINK, stab with a weapon; pierce or cut in scallops for

PINNACE, a go-between in infamous sense.


PISTOLET, gold coin, worth about 6s.

PITCH, height of a bird of prey's flight.

PLAGUE, punishment, torment.

PLAIN, lament.

PLAIN SONG, simple melody.

PLAISE, plaice.

PLANET, "struck with a --," planets were supposed to
have powers of blasting or exercising secret influences.

PLAUSIBLE, pleasing.

PLAUSIBLY, approvingly.

PLOT, plan.

PLY, apply oneself to.

POESIE, posy, motto inside a ring.

POINT IN HIS DEVICE, exact in every particular.

POINTS, tagged laces or cords for fastening the breeches
to the doublet.

POINT-TRUSSER, one who trussed (tied) his master's
points (q.v.).

POISE, weigh, balance.

POKING-STICK, stick used for setting the plaits of ruffs.

POLITIC, politician.

POLITIC, judicious, prudent, political.

POLITICIAN, plotter, intriguer.

POLL, strip, plunder, gain by extortion.

POMANDER, ball of perfume, worn or hung about the
person to prevent infection, or for foppery.

POMMADO, vaulting on a horse without the aid of stirrups.

PONTIC, sour.

POPULAR, vulgar, of the populace.

POPULOUS, numerous.

PORT, gate; print of a deer's foot.

PORT, transport.

PORTAGUE, Portuguese gold coin, worth over 3 or 4

PORTCULLIS, "-- of coin," some old coins have a
portcullis stamped on their reverse (Whalley).

PORTENT, marvel, prodigy; sinister omen.

PORTENTOUS, prophesying evil, threatening.

PORTER, references appear "to allude to Parsons, the king's
porter, who was...near seven feet high" (Whalley).

POSSESS, inform, acquaint.

POST AND PAIR, a game at cards.

POSY, motto.  (See Poesie).

POTCH, poach.

POULT-FOOT, club-foot.

POUNCE, claw, talon.

PRACTICE, intrigue, concerted plot.

PRACTISE, plot, conspire.

PRAGMATIC, an expert, agent.

PRAGMATIC, officious, conceited, meddling.

PRECEDENT, record of proceedings.

PRECEPT, warrant, summons.

PRECISIAN(ISM), Puritan(ism), preciseness.

PREFER, recommend.

PRESENCE, presence chamber.

PRESENT(LY), immediate(ly), without delay; at the
present time; actually.

PRESS, force into service.

PREST, ready.

PRETEND, assert, allege.

PREVENT, anticipate.

PRICE, worth, excellence.

PRICK, point, dot used in the writing of Hebrew and
other languages.

PRICK, prick out, mark off, select; trace, track;
"-- away," make off with speed.

PRIMERO, game of cards.

PRINCOX, pert boy.

PRINT, "in --," to the letter, exactly.


PRIVATE, private interests.

PRIVATE, privy, intimate.

PROCLIVE, prone to.

PRODIGIOUS, monstrous, unnatural.

PRODIGY, monster.

PRODUCED, prolonged.

PROFESS, pretend.

PROJECTION, the throwing of the "powder of projection"
into the crucible to turn the melted metal into gold or

PROLATE, pronounce drawlingly.

PROPER, of good appearance, handsome; own, particular.

PROPERTIES, stage necessaries.

PROPERTY, duty; tool.

PRORUMPED, burst out.

PROTEST, vow, proclaim (an affected word of that time);
formally declare non-payment, etc., of bill of exchange;
fig. failure of personal credit, etc.

PROVANT, soldier's allowance -- hence, of common make.

PROVIDE, foresee.

PROVIDENCE, foresight, prudence.

PUBLICATION, making a thing public of common property (N.E.D.).

PUCKFIST, puff-ball; insipid, insignificant, boasting fellow.

PUFF-WING, shoulder puff.

PUISNE, judge of inferior rank, a junior.


PUMP, shoe.

PUNGENT, piercing.

PUNTO, point, hit.

PURCEPT, precept, warrant.

PURE, fine, capital, excellent.

PURELY, perfectly, utterly.

PURL, pleat or fold of a ruff.

PURSE-NET, net of which the mouth is drawn together
with a string.

PURSUIVANT, state messenger who summoned the persecuted
seminaries; warrant officer.

PURSY, PURSINESS, shortwinded(ness).

PUT, make a push, exert yourself (N.E.D.).

PUT OFF, excuse, shift.

PUT ON, incite, encourage; proceed with, take in hand, try.


QUAINT, elegant, elaborated, ingenious, clever.

QUAR, quarry.

QUARRIED, seized, or fed upon, as prey.

QUEAN, hussy, jade.

QUEASY, hazardous, delicate.

QUELL, kill, destroy.

QUEST, request; inquiry.

QUESTION, decision by force of arms.

QUESTMAN, one appointed to make official inquiry.

QUIB, QUIBLIN, quibble, quip.

QUICK, the living.

QUIDDIT, quiddity, legal subtlety.

QUIRK, clever turn or trick.

QUIT, requite, repay; acquit, absolve; rid; forsake,

QUITTER-BONE, disease of horses.

QUODLING, codling.

QUOIT, throw like a quoit, chuck.

QUOTE, take note, observe, write down.

RACK, neck of mutton or pork (Halliwell).

RAKE UP, cover over.

RAMP, rear, as a lion, etc.

RAPT, carry away.

RAPT, enraptured.

RASCAL, young or inferior deer.

RASH, strike with a glancing oblique blow, as a
boar with its tusk.

RATSEY, GOMALIEL, a famous highwayman.

RAVEN, devour.

REACH, understand.

REAL, regal.

REBATU, ruff, turned-down collar.

RECTOR, RECTRESS, director, governor.

REDARGUE, confute.

REDUCE, bring back.

REED, rede, counsel, advice.

REEL, run riot.

REFEL, refute.

REFORMADOES, disgraced or disbanded soldiers.

REGIMENT, government.


REGULAR ("Tale of a Tub"), regular noun (quibble) (N.E.D.).

RELIGION, "make -- of," make a point of, scruple of.

RELISH, savour.

REMNANT, scrap of quotation.

REMORA, species of fish.

RENDER, depict, exhibit, show.

REPAIR, reinstate.

REPETITION, recital, narration.


RESIANT, resident.

RESIDENCE, sediment.

RESOLUTION, judgment, decision.

RESOLVE, inform; assure; prepare, make up one's mind;
dissolve; come to a decision, be convinced; relax, set
at ease.

RESPECTIVE, worthy of respect; regardful, discriminative.

RESPECTIVELY, with reverence.

RESPECTLESS, regardless.

RESPIRE, exhale; inhale.

RESPONSIBLE, correspondent.

REST, musket-rest.

REST, "set up one's --," venture one's all, one's
last stake (from game of primero).

REST, arrest.

RESTIVE, RESTY, dull, inactive.

RETCHLESS(NESS), reckless(ness).

RETIRE, cause to retire.

RETRICATO, fencing term.

RETRIEVE, rediscovery of game once sprung.

RETURNS, ventures sent abroad, for the safe return of
which so much money is received.

REVERBERATE, dissolve or blend by reflected heat.

REVERSE, REVERSO, back-handed thrust, etc., in fencing.

REVISE, reconsider a sentence.

RHEUM, spleen, caprice.

RIBIBE, abusive term for an old woman.

RID, destroy, do away with.

RIFLING, raffling, dicing.

RING, "cracked within the --," coins so cracked were
unfit for currency.

RISSE, risen, rose.

RIVELLED, wrinkled.

ROARER, swaggerer.

ROCHET, fish of the gurnet kind.

ROCK, distaff.

RODOMONTADO, braggadocio.

ROGUE, vagrant, vagabond.

RONDEL, "a round mark in the score of a public-house"
(Nares); roundel.

ROOK, sharper; fool, dupe.

ROSAKER, similar to ratsbane.

ROSA-SOLIS, a spiced spirituous liquor.

ROSES, rosettes.

ROUND, "gentlemen of the --," officers of inferior rank.

ROUND TRUNKS, trunk hose, short loose breeches reaching
almost or quite to the knees.

ROUSE, carouse, bumper.

ROVER, arrow used for shooting at a random mark at
uncertain distance.

ROWLY-POWLY, roly-poly.

RUDE, RUDENESS, unpolished, rough(ness), coarse(ness).

RUFFLE, flaunt, swagger.

RUG, coarse frieze.

RUG-GOWNS, gown made of rug.

RUSH, reference to rushes with which the floors were
then strewn.

RUSHER, one who strewed the floor with rushes.

RUSSET, homespun cloth of neutral or reddish-brown colour.

SACK, loose, flowing gown.

SADLY, seriously, with gravity.

SAD(NESS), sober, serious(ness).

SAFFI, bailiffs.

ST. THOMAS A WATERINGS, place in Surrey where criminals
were executed.

SAKER, small piece of ordnance.

SALT, leap.

SALT, lascivious.

SAMPSUCHINE, sweet marjoram.

SARABAND, a slow dance.

SATURNALS, began December 17.

SAUCINESS, presumption, insolence.

SAUCY, bold, impudent, wanton.

SAUNA (Lat.), a gesture of contempt.

SAVOUR, perceive; gratify, please; to partake of the nature.

SAY, sample.

SAY, assay, try.

SCALD, word of contempt, implying dirt and disease.

SCALLION, shalot, small onion.

SCANDERBAG, "name which the Turks (in allusion to
Alexander the Great) gave to the brave Castriot, chief
of Albania, with whom they had continual wars.  His
romantic life had just been translated" (Gifford).

SCAPE, escape.

SCARAB, beetle.

SCARTOCCIO, fold of paper, cover, cartouch, cartridge.

SCONCE, head.

SCOPE, aim.

SCOT AND LOT, tax, contribution (formerly a parish

SCOTOMY, dizziness in the head.

SCOUR, purge.

SCOURSE, deal, swap.

SCRATCHES, disease of horses.

SCROYLE, mean, rascally fellow.

SCRUPLE, doubt.

SEAL, put hand to the giving up of property or rights.

SEALED, stamped as genuine.

SEAM-RENT, ragged.

SEAMING LACES, insertion or edging.

SEAR UP, close by searing, burning.

SEARCED, sifted.

SECRETARY, able to keep a secret.

SECULAR, worldly, ordinary, commonplace.

SECURE, confident.

SEELIE, happy, blest.

SEISIN, legal term: possession.

SELLARY, lewd person.

SEMBLABLY, similarly.

SEMINARY, a Romish priest educated in a foreign seminary.

SENSELESS, insensible, without sense or feeling.

SENSIBLY, perceptibly.

SENSIVE, sensitive.

SENSUAL, pertaining to the physical or material.

SERENE, harmful dew of evening.

SERICON, red tincture.

SERVANT, lover.

SERVICES, doughty deeds of arms.

SESTERCE, Roman copper coin.

SET, stake, wager.

SET UP, drill.

SETS, deep plaits of the ruff.

SEWER, officer who served up the feast, and brought
water for the hands of the guests.

SHAPE, a suit by way of disguise.

SHIFT, fraud, dodge.

SHIFTER, cheat.

SHITTLE, shuttle; "shittle-cock," shuttlecock.

SHOT, tavern reckoning.

SHOT-CLOG, one only tolerated because he paid the shot
(reckoning) for the rest.

SHOT-FREE, scot-free, not having to pay.

SHOVE-GROAT, low kind of gambling amusement, perhaps
somewhat of the nature of pitch and toss.

SHOT-SHARKS, drawers.

SHREWD, mischievous, malicious, curst.

SHREWDLY, keenly, in a high degree.

SHRIVE, sheriff; posts were set up before his door for
proclamations, or to indicate his residence.

SHROVING, Shrovetide, season of merriment.

SIGILLA, seal, mark.

SILENCED BRETHERN, MINISTERS, those of the Church or
Nonconformists who had been silenced, deprived, etc.

SILLY, simple, harmless.

SIMPLE, silly, witless; plain, true.

SIMPLES, herbs.

SINGLE, term of chase, signifying when the hunted stag
is separated from the herd, or forced to break covert.

SINGLE, weak, silly.

SINGLE-MONEY, small change.

SINGULAR, unique, supreme.

SI-QUIS, bill, advertisement.

SKELDRING, getting money under false pretences; swindling.

SKILL, "it --s not," matters not.

SKINK(ER), pour, draw(er), tapster.

SKIRT, tail.

SLEEK, smooth.

SLICE, fire shovel or pan (dial.).

SLICK, sleek, smooth.

'SLID, 'SLIGHT, 'SPRECIOUS, irreverent oaths.

SLIGHT, sleight, cunning, cleverness; trick.

SLIP, counterfeit coin, bastard.

SLIPPERY, polished and shining.

SLOPS, large loose breeches.

SLOT, print of a stag's foot.

SLUR, put a slur on; cheat (by sliding a die in some way).

SMELT, gull, simpleton.

SNORLE, "perhaps snarl, as Puppy is addressed" (Cunningham).


SNUFF, anger, resentment; "take in --," take offence at.

SNUFFERS, small open silver dishes for holding snuff,
or receptacle for placing snuffers in (Halliwell).

SOCK, shoe worn by comic actors.

SOD, seethe.

SOGGY, soaked, sodden.

SOIL, "take --," said of a hunted stag when he takes
to the water for safety.

SOL, sou.

SOLDADOES, soldiers.

SOLICIT, rouse, excite to action.

SOOTH, flattery, cajolery.

SOOTHE, flatter, humour.

SOPHISTICATE, adulterate.

SORT, company, party; rank, degree.

SORT, suit, fit; select.

SOUSE, ear.

SOUSED ("Devil is an Ass"), fol. read "sou't," which
Dyce interprets as "a variety of the spelling of "shu'd":
to "shu" is to scare a bird away."  (See his "Webster,"
page 350).

SOWTER, cobbler.

SPAGYRICA, chemistry according to the teachings of Paracelsus.

SPAR, bar.

SPEAK, make known, proclaim.

SPECULATION, power of sight.

SPED, to have fared well, prospered.

SPEECE, species.

SPIGHT, anger, rancour.

SPINNER, spider.

SPINSTRY, lewd person.

SPITTLE, hospital, lazar-house.

SPLEEN, considered the seat of the emotions.

SPLEEN, caprice, humour, mood.

SPRUNT, spruce.

SPURGE, foam.

SPUR-RYAL, gold coin worth 15s.

SQUIRE, square, measure; "by the --," exactly.

STAGGERING, wavering, hesitating.

STAIN, disparagement, disgrace.

STALE, decoy, or cover, stalking-horse.

STALE, make cheap, common.

STALK, approach stealthily or under cover.

STALL, forestall.


STAPLE, market, emporium.

STARK, downright.

STARTING-HOLES, loopholes of escape.

STATE, dignity; canopied chair of state; estate.

STATUMINATE, support vines by poles or stakes; used
by Pliny (Gifford).

STAY, gag.

STAY, await; detain.

STICKLER, second or umpire.

STIGMATISE, mark, brand.

STILL, continual(ly), constant(ly).

STINKARD, stinking fellow.

STINT, stop.

STIPTIC, astringent.

STOCCATA, thrust in fencing.

STOCK-FISH, salted and dried fish.

STOMACH, pride, valour.

STOMACH, resent.

STOOP, swoop down as a hawk.

STOP, fill, stuff.

STOPPLE, stopper.

STOTE, stoat, weasel.

STOUP, stoop, swoop=bow.

STRAIGHT, straightway.

STRAMAZOUN (Ital. stramazzone), a down blow, as opposed
to the thrust.

STRANGE, like a stranger, unfamiliar.

STRANGENESS, distance of behaviour.

STREIGHTS, OR BERMUDAS, labyrinth of alleys and courts
in the Strand.

STRIGONIUM, Grau in Hungary, taken from the Turks in

STRIKE, balance (accounts).

STRINGHALT, disease of horses.

STROKER, smoother, flatterer.

STROOK, p.p. of "strike."

STRUMMEL-PATCHED, strummel is glossed in dialect dicts.
as "a long, loose and dishevelled head of hair."

STUDIES, studious efforts.

STYLE, title; pointed instrument used for writing on wax

SUBTLE, fine, delicate, thin; smooth, soft.

SUBTLETY (SUBTILITY), subtle device.

SUBURB, connected with loose living.

SUCCUBAE, demons in form of women.

SUCK, extract money from.

SUFFERANCE, suffering.

SUMMED, term of falconry: with full-grown plumage.

SUPER-NEGULUM, topers turned the cup bottom up when
it was empty.

SUPERSTITIOUS, over-scrupulous.

SUPPLE, to make pliant.

SURBATE, make sore with walking.

SURCEASE, cease.

SUR-REVERENCE, save your reverence.

SURVISE, peruse.

SUSCITABILITY, excitability.

SUSPECT, suspicion.

SUSPEND, suspect.

SUSPENDED, held over for the present.

SUTLER, victualler.

SWAD, clown, boor.

SWATH BANDS, swaddling clothes.

SWINGE, beat.

TABERD, emblazoned mantle or tunic worn by knights
and heralds.

TABLE(S), "pair of --," tablets, note-book.

TABOR, small drum.

TABRET, tabor.

TAFFETA, silk; "tuft-taffeta," a more costly silken fabric.

TAINT, "-- a staff," break a lance at tilting in an
unscientific or dishonourable manner.

TAKE IN, capture, subdue.

TAKE ME WITH YOU, let me understand you.

TAKE UP, obtain on credit, borrow.

TALENT, sum or weight of Greek currency.

TALL, stout, brave.

TANKARD-BEARERS, men employed to fetch water from the

TARLETON, celebrated comedian and jester.

TARTAROUS, like a Tartar.

TAVERN-TOKEN, "to swallow a --," get drunk.

TELL, count.

TELL-TROTH, truth-teller.

TEMPER, modify, soften.

TENDER, show regard, care for, cherish; manifest.

TENT, "take --," take heed.

TERSE, swept and polished.

TERTIA, "that portion of an army levied out of one
particular district or division of a country" (Gifford).

TESTON, tester, coin worth 6d.

THIRDBOROUGH, constable.

THREAD, quality.

THREAVES, droves.

THREE-FARTHINGS, piece of silver current under Elizabeth.

THREE-PILED, of finest quality, exaggerated.

THRIFTILY, carefully.

THRUMS, ends of the weaver's warp; coarse yarn made from.

THUMB-RING, familiar spirits were supposed capable of
being carried about in various ornaments or parts of dress.

TIBICINE, player on the tibia, or pipe.

TICK-TACK, game similar to backgammon.

TIGHTLY, promptly.

TIM, (?) expressive of a climax of nonentity.

TIMELESS, untimely, unseasonable.

TINCTURE, an essential or spiritual principle supposed
by alchemists to be transfusible into material things;
an imparted characteristic or tendency.

TINK, tinkle.

TIPPET, "turn --," change behaviour or way of life.

TIPSTAFF, staff tipped with metal.

TIRE, head-dress.

TIRE, feed ravenously, like a bird of prey.

TITILLATION, that which tickles the senses, as a perfume.

TOD, fox.

TOILED, worn out, harassed.

TOKEN, piece of base metal used in place of very small
coin, when this was scarce.

TONNELS, nostrils.

TOP, "parish --," large top kept in villages for
amusement and exercise in frosty weather when people
were out of work.

TOTER, tooter, player on a wind instrument.

TOUSE, pull, rend.

TOWARD, docile, apt; on the way to; as regards; present,
at hand.

TOY, whim; trick; term of contempt.

TRACT, attraction.

TRAIN, allure, entice.

TRANSITORY, transmittable.

TRANSLATE, transform.

TRAY-TRIP, game at dice (success depended on throwing
a three) (Nares).


TREEN, wooden.

TRENCHER, serving-man who carved or served food.

TRENDLE-TAIL, trundle-tail, curly-tailed.

TRICK (TRICKING), term of heraldry: to draw outline of
coat of arms, etc., without blazoning.

TRIG, a spruce, dandified man.

TRILL, trickle.

TRILLIBUB, tripe, any worthless, trifling thing.

TRIPOLY, "come from --," able to perform feats of agility,
a "jest nominal," depending on the first part of the word

TRITE, worn, shabby.

TRIVIA, three-faced goddess (Hecate).

TROJAN, familiar term for an equal or inferior; thief.

TROLL, sing loudly.

TROMP, trump, deceive.

TROPE, figure of speech.

TROW, think, believe, wonder.

TROWLE, troll.

TROWSES, breeches, drawers.

TRUCHMAN, interpreter.

TRUNDLE, JOHN, well-known printer.

TRUNDLE, roll, go rolling along.

TRUNDLING CHEATS, term among gipsies and beggars for
carts or coaches (Gifford).

TRUNK, speaking-tube.

TRUSS, tie the tagged laces that fastened the breeches
to the doublet.

TUBICINE, trumpeter.

TUCKET (Ital. toccato), introductory flourish on the

TUITION, guardianship.

TUMBLER, a particular kind of dog so called from the
mode of his hunting.

TUMBREL-SLOP, loose, baggy breeches.

TURD, excrement.

TUSK, gnash the teeth (Century Dict.).

TWIRE, peep, twinkle.


TYRING-HOUSE, attiring-room.

ULENSPIEGEL.  See Howleglass.

UMBRATILE, like or pertaining to a shadow.

UMBRE, brown dye.

UNBATED, unabated.

UNBORED, (?) excessively bored.

UNCARNATE, not fleshly, or of flesh.

UNCOUTH, strange, unusual.

UNDERTAKER, "one who undertook by his influence in the
House of Commons to carry things agreeably to his
Majesty's wishes" (Whalley); one who becomes surety for.

UNEQUAL, unjust.

UNEXCEPTED, no objection taken at.

UNFEARED, unaffrighted.

UNHAPPILY, unfortunately.

UNICORN'S HORN, supposed antidote to poison.

UNKIND(LY), unnatural(ly).

UNMANNED, untamed (term in falconry).

UNQUIT, undischarged.

UNREADY, undressed.

UNRUDE, rude to an extreme.

UNSEASONED, unseasonable, unripe.

UNSEELED, a hawk's eyes were "seeled" by sewing the
eyelids together with fine thread.

UNTIMELY, unseasonably.

UNVALUABLE, invaluable.

UPBRAID, make a matter of reproach.

UPSEE, heavy kind of Dutch beer (Halliwell); "-- Dutch,"
in the Dutch fashion.

UPTAILS ALL, refrain of a popular song.

URGE, allege as accomplice, instigator.

URSHIN, URCHIN, hedgehog.

USE, interest on money; part of sermon dealing with the
practical application of doctrine.

USE, be in the habit of, accustomed to; put out to interest.


USURE, usury.

UTTER, put in circulation, make to pass current; put forth for sale.

VAIL, bow, do homage.

VAILS, tips, gratuities.

VALL.  See Vail.

VALLIES (Fr. valise), portmanteau, bag.

VAPOUR(S) (n. and v.), used affectedly, like "humour,"
in many senses, often very vaguely and freely ridiculed
by Jonson; humour, disposition, whims, brag(ging),
hector(ing), etc.

VARLET, bailiff, or serjeant-at-mace.

VAUT, vault.

VEER (naut.), pay out.

VEGETAL, vegetable; person full of life and vigour.

VELLUTE, velvet.

VELVET CUSTARD.  Cf. "Taming of the Shrew," iv. 3, 82,
"custard coffin," coffin being the raised crust over a pie.

VENT, vend, sell; give outlet to; scent, snuff up.

VENUE, bout (fencing term).

VERDUGO (Span.), hangman, executioner.

VERGE, "in the --," within a certain distance of the court.

VEX, agitate, torment.

VICE, the buffoon of old moralities; some kind of
machinery for moving a puppet (Gifford).

VIE AND REVIE, to hazard a certain sum, and to cover
it with a larger one.

VINCENT AGAINST YORK, two heralds-at-arms.

VINDICATE, avenge.

VIRGE, wand, rod.

VIRGINAL, old form of piano.

VIRTUE, valour.

VIVELY, in lifelike manner, livelily.

VIZARD, mask.

VOGUE, rumour, gossip.

VOICE, vote.

VOID, leave, quit.

VOLARY, cage, aviary.

VOLLEY, "at --," "o' the volee," at random (from a
term of tennis).

VORLOFFE, furlough.

WADLOE, keeper of the Devil Tavern, where Jonson and his
friends met in the 'Apollo' room (Whalley).

WAIGHTS, waits, night musicians, "band of musical
watchmen" (Webster), or old form of "hautboys."

WANNION, "vengeance," "plague" (Nares).

WARD, a famous pirate.

WARD, guard in fencing.

WATCHET, pale, sky blue.

WEAL, welfare.

WEED, garment.

WEFT, waif.

WEIGHTS, "to the gold --," to every minute particular.

WELKIN, sky.

WELL-SPOKEN, of fair speech.

WELL-TORNED, turned and polished, as on a wheel.

WELT, hem, border of fur.

WHER, whether.

WHETSTONE, GEORGE, an author who lived 1544(?) to 1587(?).

WHIFF, a smoke, or drink; "taking the --," inhaling the
tobacco smoke or some such accomplishment.

WHIGH-HIES, neighings, whinnyings.

WHIMSY, whim, "humour."

WHINILING, (?) whining, weakly.

WHIT, (?) a mere jot.

WHITEMEAT, food made of milk or eggs.

WICKED, bad, clumsy.

WICKER, pliant, agile.

WILDING, esp. fruit of wild apple or crab tree (Webster).

WINE, "I have the -- for you," Prov.: I have the
perquisites (of the office) which you are to share

WINNY, "same as old word "wonne," to stay, etc." (Whalley).

WISE-WOMAN, fortune-teller.

WISH, recommend.

WISS (WUSSE), "I --," certainly, of a truth.

WITHOUT, beyond.

WITTY, cunning, ingenious, clever.

WOOD, collection, lot.

WOODCOCK, term of contempt.

WOOLSACK ("-- pies"), name of tavern.

WORT, unfermented beer.

WOUNDY, great, extreme.

WREAK, revenge.

WROUGHT, wrought upon.

WUSSE, interjection.  (See Wiss).

YEANLING, lamb, kid.

ZANY, an inferior clown, who attended upon the chief
fool and mimicked his tricks.

End of The Project Gutenberg Etext of Epicoene:  Or, The Silent Woman
by Ben Jonson


This file was acquired from Project Gutenberg, and it is in the public domain. It is re-distributed here as a part of the Alex Catalogue of Electronic Texts ( by Eric Lease Morgan (Infomotions, Inc.) for the purpose of freely sharing, distributing, and making available works of great literature. Its Infomotions unique identifier is etext4011, and it should be available from the following URL:

Infomotions, Inc.

Infomotions Man says, "Give back to the 'Net."