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Title: Kemps Nine Daies Wonder - Performed in a Daunce from London to Norwich
Author: Kemp, William
Language: English
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{Transcriber's notes:

Footnotes are marked thus: [xiv:2] for footnote 2 on page xiv. All
other square brackets are as in the original text. The notation {19:1}
indicates that the line note for page 19, line 1, refers to the
word or phrase so marked.

Spelling and punctuation are idiosyncratic in the original. They have
not been changed.}






  ELECTED MAY 2, 1839.


  THOMAS AMYOT, ESQ. F.R.S. Treas. S.A. _Director_.
  THE REV. PHILIP BLISS, D.C.L., F.S.A., Registrar of the University
    of Oxford.
  JOHN BRUCE, ESQ. F.S.A. _Treasurer_.
  SIR HENRY ELLIS, K.H., F.R.S., Sec. S.A.
  WILLIAM J. THOMS, ESQ. F.S.A. _Secretary_.


William Kemp was a comic actor of high reputation. Like Tarlton, whom he
succeeded "as wel in the fauour of her Maiesty as in the opinion and
good thoughts of the generall audience,"[v:1] he usually played the
Clown, and was greatly applauded for his buffoonery, his extemporal
wit,[v:2] and his performance of the Jig.[v:3]

That at one time,--perhaps from about 1589 to 1593 or later--he
belonged to a Company under the management of the celebrated Edward
Alleyn, is proved by the title-page of a drama[vi:1] which will be
afterwards cited. At a subsequent period he was a member of the Company
called the Lord Chamberlain's Servants, who played during summer at the
Globe, and during winter at the Blackfriars. In 1596, while the
last-mentioned house was undergoing considerable repair and enlargement,
a petition was presented to the Privy Council by the principal
inhabitants of the liberty, praying that the work might proceed no
further, and that theatrical exhibitions might be abolished in that
district. A counter petition, which appears to have been successful, was
presented by the Lord Chamberlain's Servants; and, at its commencement,
the names of the chief petitioners are thus arranged:--Thomas Pope,
Richard Burbadge, John Hemings, Augustine Phillips, William Shakespeare,
_William Kempe_, William Slye, and Nicholas Tooley.[vi:2]

When _Romeo and Juliet_ and _Much ado about Nothing_ were originally
brought upon the stage, Kemp acted Peter and Dogberry;[vi:3] and it has
been supposed that in other plays of Shakespeare,--in _The Two Gentlemen
of Verona_, _As you like it_, _Hamlet_, _The Second Part of Henry the
Fourth_, and _The Merchant of Venice_, he performed Launce, Touchstone,
the Grave-digger, Justice Shallow, and Launcelot. On the first
production of Ben Jonson's _Every Man in his Humour_, a character[vii:1]
was assigned to him; and there is good reason to believe that in _Every
Man out of his Humour_, by the same dramatist, he represented Carlo

In 1599 Kemp attracted much attention by dancing the morris from London
to Norwich; and as well to refute the lying ballads put forth concerning
this exploit, as to testify his gratitude for the favours he had
received during his "gambols,"[vii:2] he published in the following year
the curious pamphlet which is now reprinted. A _Nine daies wonder_ was
thus entered in the Stationers' Books:

                     "22 Aprilis [1600]

  "Mr. Linge   Entered for his copye vnder the  }
               handes of Mr. Harsnet & Mr.      } vi^d."
               Man warden a booke called Kemps  }
               morris to Norwiche.[vii:3]       }

Ben Jonson alludes to this remarkable journey in _Every Man out of his
Humour_, originally acted in 1599, where Carlo Buffone is made to
exclaim "Would I had _one of Kemp's shoes_ to throw after you!"[viii:1]
and again in his _Epigrams_:--

                                    "or which
    Did dance the famous morris unto Norwich."[viii:2]

So also William Rowley in the prefatory Address to a very rare tract
called _A Search for Money_, &c., 1609, 4to.:--"Yee haue beene either
eare or eye-witnesses or both to many madde voiages made of late yeares,
both by sea and land, as the trauell to Rome with the returne in
certaine daies, _the wild morrise to Norrige_," &c. And Brathwait in
_Remains after Death_, &c. 1618, 12mo. has the following lines:--

    "_Vpon Kempe and his morice, with his Epitaph._

    "Welcome from Norwich, Kempe! all ioy to see
    Thy safe returne moriscoed lustily.
    But out, alasse, how soone's thy morice done!
    When Pipe and Taber, all thy friends be gone,
    And leaue thee now to dance the second part
    With feeble nature, not with nimble Art;
    Then all thy triumphs fraught with strains of mirth
    Shall be cag'd vp within a chest of earth:
    Shall be? they are: th'ast danc'd thee out of breath,
    And now must make thy parting dance with death."[viii:3]

Towards the end of a _Nine daies wonder_, Kemp announces his intention
of setting out shortly on a "great journey;"[ix:1] but as no record of
this second feat has come down to us, we may conclude that it was never

The date of his death has not been determined. Malone, in the
uncertainty on this point, could only adduce the following passage of
Dekker's _Guls Horne-booke_, 1609, from which, he says, "it may be
presumed"[ix:3] that Kemp was then deceased: "Tush, tush, Tarleton,
_Kemp_, nor Singer, nor all the litter of fooles that _now_ come
drawling behinde them, neuer plaid the Clownes more naturally then the
arrantest Sot of you all."[ix:4] George Chalmers, however, discovered an
entry in the burial register of St. Saviour's, Southwark--"1603,
November 2d _William Kempe, a man_;"[ix:5] and since the name of Kemp
does not occur in the license granted by King James, 19th May, 1603, to
the Lord Chamberlain's Company (who in consequence of that instrument
were afterwards denominated his Majesty's Servants) there is great
probability that the said entry relates to the comedian, and that he had
been carried off by the plague of that year.

Two scenes of two early dramas, which exhibit Kemp _in propria persona_,
must necessarily form a portion of the present essay. _The Retvrne from
Pernassvs: Or The Scourge of Simony. Publiquely acted by the Students in
Saint Johns Colledge in Cambridge_, 1606,[x:1] 4to. furnishes the first

     "Act 4. Scen. 5. [3.]

     _[Enter] Burbage [and] Kempe._

     "_Bur._ Now, Will Kempe, if we can intertaine these schollers at a
     low rate, it wil be well; they haue oftentimes a good conceite in a

     "_Kempe._ Its true indeed, honest Dick; but the slaues are somewhat
     proud, and, besides, it is a good sport, in a part to see them
     neuer speake in their walke but at the end of the stage, iust as
     though in walking with a fellow we should neuer speake but at a
     stile, a gate, or a ditch, where a man can go no further. I was
     once at a Comedie in Cambridge, and there I saw a parasite make
     faces and mouths of all sorts on this fashion.

     "_Bur._ A little teaching will mend these faults, and it may bee,
     besides, they will be able to pen a part.

     "_Kemp._ Few of the vniuersity pen plaies well; they smell too
     much of that writer Ouid, and that writer Metamorphosis,[xi:1] and
     talke too much of Proserpina and Juppiter. Why, heres our fellow
     Shakespeare puts them all downe, I,[xi:2] and Ben Jonson too. O
     that Ben Jonson is a pestilent fellow! he brought vp Horace giuing
     the Poets a pill,[xi:3] but our fellow Shakespeare hath giuen him a
     purge that made him beray his credit.

     "_Bur._ Its a shrewd fellow indeed. I wonder these schollers stay
     so long; they appointed to be here presently that we might try
     them: oh, here they come.

     [_Enter Philomusus and Studioso._]

     "_Stud._ Take heart, these lets[xi:4] our clouded thoughts refine;
              The sun shines brightest when it gins decline.

     "_Bur._ M[aster] Phil. and M. Stud., God saue you.

     "_Kemp._ M. Pil. and M. Otioso, well met.

     "_Phil._ The same to you, good M. Burbage. What, M. Kempe, how doth
     the Emperour of Germany?

     "_Stud._ God saue you, M. Kempe; welcome, M. Kempe, from dancing
     the morrice ouer the Alpes.[xi:5]

     "_Kemp._ Well, you merry knaues, you may come to the honor of it
     one day: is it not better to make a foole of the world as I haue
     done, then to be fooled of the world as you schollers are? But be
     merry, my lads: you haue happened vpon the most excellent vocation
     in the world for money; they come North and South to bring it to
     our playhouse; and for honours, who of more report then Dick
     Burbage and Will Kempe? he is not counted a Gentleman that knowes
     not Dick Burbage and Wil Kempe; there's not a country wench that
     can dance Sellengers Round[xii:1] but can talke of Dick Burbage and
     Will Kempe.

     "_Phil._ Indeed, M. Kempe, you are very famous, but that is as well
     for workes in print as your part in kue.

     "_Kempe._ You are at Cambridge still with sice kue,[xii:2] and be
     lusty humorous poets; you must vntrusle:[xii:3] I road this my last
     circuit purposely, because I would be iudge of your actions.

     "_Bur._ M. Stud., I pray you take some part in this booke, and act
     it, that I may see what will fit you best. I thinke your voice
     would serue for Hieronimo:[xii:4] obserue how I act it, and then
     imitate mee.

     "_Stud._ 'Who call[s] Hieronomo from his naked bed,
              And,' &c.

     "_Bur._ You will do well after a while.

     "_Kemp._ Now for you, me thinkes you should belong to my tuition,
     and your face me thinkes would be good for a foolish Mayre or a
     foolish iustice of peace. Marke me.[xii:5] 'Forasmuch as there be
     two states of a common wealth, the one of peace, the other of
     tranquility; two states of warre, the one of discord, the other of
     dissention; two states of an incorporation, the one of the
     Aldermen, the other of the Brethren; two states of magistrates, the
     one of gouerning, the other of bearing rule; now, as I said euen
     now, for a good thing cannot be said too often, Vertue is the
     shooing-horne of iustice, that is, vertue is the shooing-horne of
     doing well, that is, vertue is the shooing-horne of doing iustly,
     it behooueth mee and is my part to commend this shooing-horne vnto
     you. I hope this word shooing-horne doth not offend any of you, my
     worshipfull brethren, for you, beeing the worshipfull headsmen of
     the towne, know well what the horne meaneth. Now therefore I am
     determined not onely to teach but also to instruct, not onely the
     ignorant but also the simple, not onely what is their duty towards
     their betters, but also what is their dutye towards their
     superiours.' Come, let me see how you can doe; sit downe in the

     "_Phil._ 'Forasmuch as there be,' &c.

     "_Kemp._ Thou wilt do well in time, if thou wilt be ruled by thy
     betters, that is by my selfe, and such graue Aldermen of the
     playhouse as I am.

     "_Bur._ I like your face and the proportion of your body for
     Richard the 3; I pray, M. Phil., let me see you act a little of it.

     "_Phil._ 'Now is the winter of our discontent
              Made glorious summer by the sonne of Yorke.'

     "_Bur._ Very well, I assure you. Well, M. Phil. and M. Stud., wee
     see what ability you are of: I pray walke with vs to our fellows,
     and weele agree presently.

     "_Phil._ We will follow you straight, M. Burbage.

     "_Kempe._ Its good manners to follow vs, Maister Phil. and Maister

     [_Exeunt Burbage and Kempe._]"[xiii:1]

The other drama in which Kemp personally figures is of great rarity,
and has escaped the notice of those writers who have touched on his
biography. It was the joint work of Day, William Rowley, and
Wilkins;[xiv:1] and is entitled _The Travailes of The three English
Brothers. Sir Thomas, Sir Anthony, Mr. Robert Shirley. As it is now
play'd by her Maiesties Seruants_, 1607,[xiv:2] 4to. Sir Anthony Shirley
having been sent to Italy as ambassador from the Sophy, the following
scene is supposed to take place at Venice.

     "_Enter seruant._

     "_Ser._ Sir, heres an Englishman[xiv:3] desires accesse to you.

     "_Sir Ant._ An Englishman? whats his name?

     "_Ser._ He calls himselfe Kempe.

     "_Sir Ant._ Kemp! bid him come in. [_Exit Seruant_]. _Enter Kempe._
     Welcome, honest Will; and how doth all thy fellowes in England?

     "_Kemp._ Why, like good fellowes, when they haue no money, liue
     vpon credit.

     "_Sir Ant._ And what good new Plays haue you?

     "_Kemp._ Many idle toyes; but the old play that Adam and Eue[xiv:4]
     acted in bare action vnder the figge tree drawes most of the

     "_Sir Ant._ Jesting, Will.

     "_Kemp._ In good earnest it doth, sir.

     "_S. Ant._ I partly credit thee; but what Playe[s] of note haue

     "_Kemp._ Many of name, some of note; especially one, the name was
     called _Englands Ioy_;[xv:1] Marry, hee was no Poet that wrote it,
     he drew more Connies in a purse-nette, then euer were taken at any
     draught about London.

     "_[Re]Enter Seruant._

     "_Seru._ Sir, heres an Italian Harlaken come to offer a play to
     your Lord-ship.

     "_Sir Ant._ We willingly accept it. [_Exit Seruant._] Heark, Kempe:
                 Because I like thy iesture and thy mirth,
                 Let me request thee play a part with them.

     "[_Enter Harlaken and Wife._]

     "_Kem._ I am somewhat hard of study, and like your honor, but if
     they well inuent any extemporall meriment, ile put out the small
     sacke of witte I ha' left in venture with them.

     "_S. Ant._ They shall not deny 't. Signior Harlaken, he is content.
     I pray thee question him. _Whisper._

     "_Kemp._ Now, Signior, how many are you in companie?

     "_Harl._ None but my wife and my selfe, sir.

     "_Kemp._ Your wife! why, hearke you; wil your wife do tricks in

     "_Harl._ My wife can play.

     "_Kemp._ The honest woman, I make no question; but how if we cast a
     whores part or a courtisan?

     "_Harl._ Oh, my wife is excellent at that; she's practisd it euer
     since I married her, tis her onely practise.

     "_Kemp._ But, by your leaue, and she were my wife, I had rather
     keepe her out of practise a great deale.

    "_Sir Anth._ Yet since tis the custome of the countrie,
                 Prithe make one, conclude vpon the proiect:
                 We neither looke for Schollership nor Arte,
                 But harmlesse mirth, for thats thy vsuall part.

     "_Kemp._ You shall finde me no turne-coate. _[Exit Sir Anth.]_ But
     the proiect, come; and then to casting of the parts.

     "_Harl._ Marry, sir, first we will haue an old Pantaloune.

     "_Kemp._ Some iealous Coxcombe.

     "_Harl._ Right, and that part will I play.

     "_Kemp._ The iealous Cox-combe?

     "_Harl._ I ha plaid that part euer since--

     "_Kemp._ Your wife plaid the Curtizan.

     "_Harl._ True, and a great while afore: then I must haue a peasant
     to my man, and he must keepe my wife.

     "_Kemp._ Your man, and a peasant, keepe your wife! I haue knowne a
     Gentleman keepe a peasants wife, but 'tis not vsuall for a peasant
     to keepe his maisters wife.

     "_Harl._ O, 'tis common in our countrey.

     "_Kē._ And ile maintaine the custome of the coūtry. _Offer to
     kisse his wife._

     "_Harl._ What do you meane, sir?

     "_Kemp._ Why, to rehearse my part on your wiues lips: we are
     fellowes, and amongst friends and fellowes, you knowe, all things
     are common.

     "_Harl._ But shee shall bee no common thing, if I can keepe her
     seuerall: then, sir, wee must haue an Amorado that must make me

     "_Kemp._ Oh, for loue sake let me play that part!

     "_Harl._ No, yee must play my mans part, and keepe my wife.

     "_Kemp._ Right; and who so fit to make a man a Cuckold, as hee that
     keepes his wife?

     "_Harl._ You shall not play that part.

     "_Kemp._ What say you to my boy?

     "_Harl._ I, he may play it, and you will.

     "_Kemp._ But he cannot make you iealous enough?

     "_Harl._ Tush, I warrant you, I can be iealous for nothing.

     "_Kemp._ You should not be a true Italian else.

     "_Harl._ Then we must haue a Magnifico that must take vp the matter
     betwixt me and my wife.

     "_Kemp._ Any thing of yours, but Ile take vp nothing of your wiues.

     "_Harl._ I wish not you should: but come, now am I your Maister.

     "_Kemp._ Right, and I your seruant.

     "_Harl._ Lead the way then.

     "_Kemp._ No, I ha more manners then so: in our countrie 'tis the
     custome of the Maister to go In-before his wife, and the man to
     follow the maister.

     "_Harl._ In--

     "_Kemp._ To his Mistresse.

     "_Harl._ Yee are in the right--

     "_Kemp._ Way to Cuck-holds-hauen; Saint Luke bee your speede!


When, in the former of these scenes, Kemp is said to be "famous for
_workes_ in print," I understand the ironical compliment as an allusion
to his _Nine daies wonder_ only; for I feel assured that all the other
pieces which I now proceed to notice, have been erroneously attributed
to his pen.

_A Dvtifvl Invective, Against the moste haynous Treasons of Ballard and
Babington: with other their Adherents, latelie executed. Together with
the horrible attempts and actions of the Q. of Scottes: and the Sentence
pronounced against her at Fodderingay. Newlie compiled and set foorth,
in English verse: For a Newyeares gifte to all loyall English subiects,
by W. Kempe. Imprinted at London by Richard Jones, dwelling at the signe
of the Rose and crowne, neere Holborne bridge_, 1587. 4to. (four leaves)
is assigned to our comedian in Ritson's _Bibl. Poet._, Collier's _Hist.
of Engl. Dram. Poet._[xviii:1] &c., &c. The writer calls it "the first
fruites of his labour," and dedicates it "To the right honorable my very
good Lord, George Barne, L. Maior of the Cittie of London." It opens

    "What madnes hath so mazd mens minds, that they cānot forsee
    The wretched ends of catiues vile, which work by treacherie,
    To ouerthrowe the blessed state of happie common wealth,
    Or to depriue their soueraigne prince of her long wished health.
    If feare of God and of his lawes were clearlie out of minde,
    If feare of death (by Princes lawes) might not their dueties binde,
    If vtter ruine of the Realme, and spoile of guiltlesse blood,
    Might not suffice to stay the rage of traitors cruell moode,
    Yet might they well consider howe treasons come to nought,
    But alwaies worke their ouerthrowe by whom they first were wrought,"

Towards the end, the loyalty of the author becomes so extravagant, that
in a prayer for Queen Elizabeth, he exclaims:--

    "Prolong her daies we pray thee, Lord, and if it be thy will,
    Let vs not ouerliue her raigne, but let vs haue her still!"

As the comedian expressly declares that the _Nine daies wonder_ was the
"first Pamphlet that euer Will Kemp offred to the Presse,"[xix:1] there
can be no doubt that this _Dvtiful Invective_ was written by some other
individual of the name; perhaps by the William Kempe who published in
the following year a book entitled _The Education of Children in
learning_, and who is supposed to have been a schoolmaster at

During the earlier period of the English stage, after the play was
concluded, the audience were commonly entertained by a _Jig_. As no
piece of that kind is extant, we are unable to ascertain its nature with
precision; but it appears to have been a ludicrous metrical composition,
either spoken or sung by the Clown, and occasionally accompanied by
dancing and playing on the pipe and tabor. More persons than one were
sometimes employed in a jig; and there is reason to believe that the
performance was of considerable length, occupying even the space of an
hour.[xx:1] The following entries are given verbatim from the
Stationers' Books:

                            "28 December [1591]

  "Thomas Gosson      Entred for his copie vnder thand      }
                      of M^r Watkins, the Thirde and last   } vi^d."
                      parte of Kempes Iigge, soe yt         }
                      apperteyne not to anie other."[xx:2]  }

                            "ii^do die Maii [1595]

  "William Blackwall  Enterd for his copie vnder M^r warden }
                      Binges hande, a ballad, of M^r        }
                      Kempes Newe Jigge of the              } vi^d."
                      Kitchen stuffe woman.[xx:3]           }

                            "21 October [1595]

  "Tho. Gosson        Entred for his copie vnder thande of  }
                      the Wardenes, a Ballad                }
                      called Kemps J[xxi:1] newe Jygge      }  vi^d."
                      betwixt a souldior and a Miser        }
                      and Sym the clown.[xxi:2]             }

These entries are quoted (imperfectly) by several antiquarian writers
who have enumerated the comedian's "works;" but his own express
declaration, which has already[xxi:3] removed the _Dvtiful Invective_
from the list, can only be evaded, in the present case, by weakly
arguing--that he did not consider a Jig as a _pamphlet_, or that the
preceding entries relate to pieces which had been conveyed to the
printer without his permission. My belief is that the Jigs in question
were composed by regular dramatists, and that they were called "Kemp's"
merely because he had rendered them popular by his acting, and probably
by flashes of extemporal wit. He tells us that he had "spent his life in
mad Jigges[xxi:4]"; and to one of those many entertainments Marston
alludes in _The Scovrge of Villanie_, 1599:

    "Praise but Orchestra and the skipping Art,
    You shall commaund him; faith, you haue his hart
    Even capring in your fist. A hall, a hall,
    Roome for the spheres! the orbes celestiall
    Will daunce _Kempes Jigge_."[xxii:1]

I may also remark, that, if Kemp had been a practised jig-maker, he
would hardly have required the assistance of a friend to furnish him
with verses for the _Nine daies wonder_.[xxii:2]

_A most pleasant and merie new Comedie, Intituled, A Knacke to knowe a
Knaue. Newlie set foorth, as it hath sundrie tymes bene played by Ed.
Allen and his Companie. With Kemps applauded Merrimentes of the men of
Goteham, in receiuing the King into Goteham_, was printed in 1594, 4to.,
having been entered in the Stationers' Books[xxii:3] to Rich. Jones, 7th
January of the preceding year. The accounts of Henslowe shew that it was
performed, not as a new piece, 10th June, 1592[xxii:4]; and there is no
doubt that it was originally produced several years before that date.
The name of its author has not been ascertained. That portion of it
which the title-page distinguishes as "Kemps applauded Merrimentes of
the men of Goteham" is comprehended in the following scene:

     _"Enter mad men of Goteham, to wit, a Miller, a Cobler, and a

     "_Miller._ Now let vs constult among our selues how to misbehaue
     our selues to the Kings worship, Iesus blesse him! and when he
     comes, to deliuer him this peticion. I think the Smith were best to
     do it, for hees a wise man.

     "_Cobler._ Naighbor, he shall not doe it as long as Jefferay the
     Translater is Maior of the towne.

     "_Smith._ And why, I pray? because I would haue put you from the

     "_Miller._ [_Cobler._] No, not for that, but because he is no good
     fellow, nor he will not spend his pot for companie.

     "_Smith._ Why, sir, there was a god of our occupation; and I charge
     you by vertue of his godhed to let me deliuer the petition.

     "_Cob._ But soft you; your God was a Cuckold, and his Godhead was
     the horne; and thats the Armes of the Godhead you call vpon. Go,
     you are put down with your occupation; and now I wil not grace you
     so much as to deliuer the petition for you.

     "_Smith._ What, dispraise our trade?

     "_Cob._ Nay, neighbour, be not angrie, for Ile stand to nothing
     onlie but this.

     "_Smith._ But what? bear witnesse a giues me the But, and I am not
     willing to shoot. Cobler, I will talke with you: nay, my bellowes,
     my coletrough, and my water shall enter armes with you for our
     trade. O neighbour, I can not beare it, nor I wil not beare it.

     "_Mil._ Heare you, neighbour; I pray conswade yourself and be not
     wilful, and let the Cobler deliuer it; you shal see him mar all.

     "_Smith._ At your request I will commit my selfe to you, and lay
     myselfe open to you lyke an Oyster.

     "_Mil._ Ile tell him what you say. Heare you, naighbor: we haue
     constulted to let you deliuer the petition; doe it wisely for the
     credite of the towne.

     "_Cob._ Let me alone; for the Kings Carminger was here, he sayes
     the King will be here anon.

     "_Smith._ But heark, by the Mas he comes.

     "_Enter the King, Dunston, and Perin._

     "_King._ How now, Perin, who haue we here?

     "_Cob._ We the townes men of Goteham,
             Hearing your Grace would come this way,
             Did thinke it good for you to stay--
             But hear you, neighbours, bid somebody ring the bels--
             And we are come to you alone,
             To deliuer our petition.

     "_Kin._ What is it, Perin? I pray thee reade.

     "_Per._ Nothing but to haue a license to brew strong Ale thrise a
     week, and he that comes to Goteham and will not spende a penie on a
     pot of Ale if he be a drie, that he may fast.

     "_Kin._ Well, sirs, we grant your petition.

     "_Cob._ We humblie thanke your royall Maiesty.

     "_King._ Come, Dunston, lets away. _Exeunt omnes._"[xxiv:1]

Like the pieces already noticed, "Kemps applauded Merrimentes of the
men of Goteham" have been inserted in the catalogue of his
"works."[xxiv:2] But surely the words of the title-page mean nothing
more than 'merriments in which Kemp had been applauded;' and since it is
not easy to imagine that the scene, as preserved in the printed copy,
could have been received with any unusual degree of approbation even by
the rudest audience, the probability is, that he enlivened his
part,[xxv:1] not only by his ever-welcome buffoonery, but also by sundry
speeches of extemporal humour: see a passage in _The Travailes of The
three English Brothers_, cited at p. xv. There can be no doubt that Kemp
figured in other "merrimentes" besides those "of the men of Goteham,"
though they have not descended to our times: "But," says Nash to Gabriel
Harvey, "by the meanes of his [Greene's] death thou art depriued of the
remedie in lawe which thou intendedst to haue had against him for
calling thy Father Ropemaker. Mas, thats true, what Action will it
beare? _Nihil pro nihilo_, none in law; what it will doe vpon the stage
I cannot tell, for there a man maye make action besides his part, when
he hath nothing at all to say: and if there, it is but a clownish action
that it will beare; for what can bee made of a Ropemaker more than a
Clowne? Will Kempe, I mistrust it will fall to thy lot for a _merriment_
one of these dayes." _Strange Newes, Of the intercepting certaine
Letters_, &c. 1592.[xxv:2]

I have only to add, that the present edition of the _Nine daies wonder_
exhibits faithfully the text of the original 4to, which is preserved in
the Bodleian Library,[xxvi:1] and which Gifford declared to be "a great
curiosity, and, as a rude picture of national manners, extremely well
worth reprinting."[xxvi:2]

  A. DYCE.


[v:1] Heywood's _Apology for Actors_, Sig. E 2, 1612, 4to.--Tarlton died
in Sept. 1588. A tract by Nash, entitled _An Almond for a Parrat_, n. d.
but published about 1589, is dedicated "To that most Comicall and
conceited Caualeire Monsieur du Kempe, Jestmonger and Vice-gerent
generall to the Ghost of Dicke Tarlton."


    "_Letoy._--But you, Sir, are incorrigible, and
             Take licence to yourselfe to adde unto
             Your parts your owne free fancy; and sometimes
             To alter or diminish what the writer
             With care and skill compos'd; and when you are
             To speake to your coactors in the Scene,
             You hold interloquutions with the Audients.

    _Byplay._--That is a way, my Lord, has bin allow'd
             On elder stages to move mirth and laughter.

    _Letoy._--Yes, in the dayes of Tarlton and _Kempe_,
             Before the stage was purg'd from barbarisme,
             And brought to the perfection it now shines with;
             Then fooles and jesters spent their wits, because
             The Poets were wise enough to save their owne
             For profitabler uses."

    --Brome's _Antipodes_, 1640, Act ii. sc. 1, Sig. D. 3.

The passage on this subject in _Hamlet_, Act iii. sc. 2, must be
familiar to every reader.

[v:3] The term _Jig_ will be afterwards explained.

[vi:1] _A Knack to know a Knaue._--Alleyn was concerned in several
theatres: the Company mentioned above seems to have acted at the Rose.

[vi:2] Collier's _Hist. of Engl. Dram. Poet._ i. 297, 298.

[vi:3] In the second 4to. of the former play, 1599, and in the only 4to.
of the latter, 1600, "_Kemp_" is prefixed to some speeches of Peter and

[vii:1] What character is uncertain: see the names of "The principall
Comœdians" at the end of the play in B. Jonson's _Workes_, 1616, fol.

[vii:2] See pp. 1, 2, 19.

[vii:3] Liber C. fol. 58 b.

[viii:1] Act iv. sc. 4.--_Works_, ii. 165, ed. Gifford.

[viii:2] _On the Famous Voyage_, Ibid. viii. 242.

[viii:3] Sig. F. 8.--In Dekker's _Owles Almanacke_, 1618, 4to, under "A
memoriall of the time sithence some strange and remarkeable Accidents
vntill this yeare 1617," we find "Since the horrible dance to Norwich
... 14 [years]." Sig. B. 4,--a mistake either of the author or printer.
Allusions to Kemp's morris may also be found in Dekker and Webster's
_Westward Ho_, 1607, Act v. sc. 1,--see my ed. of Webster's _Works_,
iii. 103; and in _Old Meg of Herefordshire for a Mayd Marian, and
Hereford Towne for a Morris Daunce_, &c. 1609, 4to.,--see p. 10 of
reprint in _Miscell. Ant. Anglic._ 1816.

[ix:1] P. 20.

[ix:2] The passages in _The Retvrne from Pernassus_ (see p. xi.) "What,
M. Kempe, how doth the Emperour of Germany?" and "Welcome, M. Kempe,
from dancing the morrice ouer the Alpes," are, I conceive, only sportive
allusions to his journey to Norwich.

[ix:3] Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by Boswell), iii. 198.

[ix:4] Sig. B. 2.--Malone chose to read "played the clownes _part_ more
naturally," &c.

[ix:5] Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by Boswell), iii. 490--Yet the name
_William Kemp_ appears to have been not uncommon; for Chalmers (_ubi
supra_) mentions that he found "in the parish register of St.
Bartholomew the Less, the marriage of William Kempe unto Annis Howard,
on the 10th of February, 1605-6;" and I shall presently shew that
another individual so called has been confounded with the actor.

[x:1] It was probably written about 1602,--certainly before the death of
Queen Elizabeth.

[xi:1] George Chalmers, who cites the present passage, observes, that
Kemp "was as illiterate, probably, as he was certainly jocose. The
Cambridge scholars laughed at his _gross illiterature_." Malone's
_Shakespeare_ (by Boswell), iii. 491. What folly to take the measure of
Kemp's acquirements from such a scene as this! He may have had no
classical learning; but assuredly, as the _Nine daies wonder_ shews, he
was not grossly illiterate.

[xi:2] i. e. ay.

[xi:3] An allusion to B. Jonson's _Poetaster_, _Works_, ii. 525, _seq._
ed. Gifford: the words "Shakespeare hath given him a purge," &c. have
occasioned considerable discussion; see Gifford's _Memoirs of Jonson_,
p. lx. and p. cclv.

[xi:4] i. e. hindrances.

[xi:5] See note p. ix.

[xii:1] i. e. St. Leger's Round, an old country dance.

[xii:2] Terms used in the Buttery Books at the universities: see Minsheu
in v. v. _Size_ and _Cue_.

[xii:3] An allusion to Dekker's _Satiromastix, or The Vntrussing of the
Humorous Poet_.

[xii:4] A character in Kyd's _Spanish Tragedy_. The speech here given by
Studioso from that celebrated piece (and which Burbage of course ought
previously to recite), begins in the earlier 4tos.

    "_What outcries pluck me_ from _my_ naked bed;"

and in the later--

    "_What outcry calls_," &c.

See Dodsley's _Old Plays_, iii. 130, last ed.

[xii:5] From this passage it has been conjectured that Kemp acted
Justice Shallow.

[xiii:1] Sigs. G. 2, 3.

[xiv:1] Their names are attached to the Dedication.

[xiv:2] It must have been produced, however, at an earlier date. It is
not divided into Acts.

[xiv:3] As early as 1589, in the Dedication to a tract already cited (p.
v.), Nash had fabled that Kemp was known by reputation in
Italy:--"Comming from Venice the last Summer, and taking Bergamo in my
waye homeward to England, it was my happe soiourning there some foure or
fiue dayes, to light in felowship with that famous Francatrip'
Harlicken, who, perceiuing me to bee an English man by my habit and
speech, asked me many particulars of the order and maner of our playes,
which he termed by the name of representations: amongst other talke he
enquired of me if I knew any such Parabolano here in London as Signior
Chiarlatano Kempino. Very well (quoth I), and haue beene oft in his
company. He hearing me say so, began to embrace me a new, and offered me
all the courtesie he colde for his sake, saying, although he knew him
not, yet for the report he had hard of his pleasance, hee colde not but
bee in loue with his perfections being absent."--_An Almond for a
Parrat_, Sig. A. 3.

[xiv:4] Dr. W. Marriott, the editor of _A Collection of English Miracle
Plays_, &c. Basel, 1838, has been led into a strange mistake by this
passage, which, in his Introductory Essay, p. lxii. he cites from
_Bibliographical Memoranda_, Bristol, 1816. After observing that
according to the stage direction in one of the Chester Plays, Adam and
Eve _stabunt nudi et non verecundabuntur_, he continues, "Perhaps our
forefathers thought it no indecency to give such representations,
considering they had the authority of Scripture for such exhibitions;
but it must, nevertheless, strike us as not a little extraordinary, that
at least as late as the close of the sixteenth century such scenes were
to be found in England. We learn this fact [!!] from a play entitled
_The Trailes of The three English Brothers_, 1607," &c.

[xv:1] This piece was an allegorical representation of some of the chief
events of the reign of Elizabeth, who was personated under the character
of _England's Joy_: the author was named Vennard: see Collier's _Hist.
of Eng. Dram. Poet._ iii. 405. _The Plot of the Play called England's
Joy. To be playd at the Swan this 6. of Nov. 1602_, is reprinted (from a
broadside) in _The Harl. Miscell._ x. 198, ed. Park.

[xvii:1] Sigs. E. 4., F.

[xviii:1] iii. 28.

[xix:1] P. 19.

[xix:2] "_The Education of Children in learning; declared by the
dignitie, vtilitie, and methode thereof, by W. K._ (Wm. Kempe, who seems
to have been a schoolmaster at Plymouth). Dedicated to Maister Wm.
Hawkins, Esq. maior of Plymouth, &c. Quarto, 1588." Ames's _Typ. Antiq._
by Herbert, ii. 1242.

I may here observe that Herbert (ii. 1046) has given by mistake the
following prose piece to "W. Kempe," in consequence, probably, of having
seen it bound up with the "Dvtiful Invective," in a volume of the Royal
Library: _The Censure of a loyall Subiect: Vpon certaine noted Speach
and behauiours, of those fourteene notable Traitors, at the place of
their executions, the xx. and xxi. of September last past. Wherein is
handled matter of necessarye instruction for all dutifull Subiectes:
especially, the multitude of ignorant people. Feare God: be true to thy
Prince: and obey the Lawes. At London. Printed by Richarde Jones,
dwelling at the Signe of the Rose and Crowne, neere Holborne bridge_,
1587, 4to. The author was George Whetstone. An Address to the Reader
signed T. C. [Thomas Churchyard] sets forth that "my good friend M. G.
W. at his departure into the Country, left this most honest work to be
censured by me; being right well assured, by the continuance of our true
friendshippes, that I would not deceiue him with a flattering iudgement:
and (trust me) vpon a considerate reading, I found it a little booke,
containing a large testimony of his loyaltie to his prince and
countrie," &c. Then follows the Dedication "To the Right honorable, Sir
William Cicill, knight, Baron of Burleigh," &c. signed G. W., who trusts
that this piece "will merite the acceptance of my former bookes."

[xx:1] See Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by Boswell) iii. 135, seq., Collier's
_Hist. of Engl. Dram. Poet._ iii. 378, seq.

[xx:2] Liber B. fol. 282 b.

[xx:3] Liber B. fol. 132.

[xxi:1] So in MS.

[xxi:2] Liber C. fol. 3 b.

[xxi:3] P. xix.

[xxi:4] P. 2.

[xxii:1] Lib. iii. Sat. xi. p. 225. ed. 1764.--"Orchestra" is an
allusion to Sir J. Davies's poem of that name.

Augustine Phillips, an actor contemporary with Kempe, has also been
mentioned as "an author," in consequence of the following entry in the
Stationers' Books:

                           "xxvi^to Maii [1595]

  "Raffe Hancock     Entred for his copie vnder the   }
                     handes of the Wardens, Phillips  } vi^d."
                     his gigg of the slyppers....     }

  (_Liber_ B. fol. 132 b.)

George Chalmers erroneously makes the date of this entry "1593,"
Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by Boswell), iii. 469.

[xxii:2] Pp. 10. 13.

[xxii:3] Liber B. fol. 304. As this entry is nearly in the words of the
title-page, I have not cited it at length. In Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by
Boswell), iii. 197, and Collier's _Hist. of Engl. Dram. Poet._ iii. 27,
the date is wrongly given "_Sept._ 7."

[xxii:4] Malone's _Shakespeare_ (by Boswell), iii. 299.

[xxiv:1] Sig. F.--This play is not divided into acts.

[xxiv:2] Ritson (vide _Bibl. Poet._) was evidently not aware that these
"Merriments" formed part of an extant drama.

[xxv:1] He played, I presume, the Cobler.

[xxv:2] Sig. E. 4.--Mr. Collier's conjecture (_Hist. of Engl. Dram.
Poet._ iii. 33) that Nash "refers possibly" to the "Merrimentes of the
men of Goteham" was thrown out, I think, somewhat hastily.

[xxvi:1] Among the books given to it by Robert Burton. No other copy is
extant. Blomefield mistook it for a MS.: "In 1599 ... one Kemp came
dancing the whole Way from London to Norwich, and there is a MSS. in the
Bodleian Library containing an Account of it."--_Hist. of Norf._ ii.

[xxvi:2] Note on B. Jonson's _Works_, ii. 166.

  Kemps nine daies vvonder.
  Performed in a daunce from
  London to Norwich.

  _Containing the pleasure, paines and kinde entertainment_
  of _William Kemp_ betweene _London_ and that Citty
  in his late Morrice.

  Wherein is somewhat set downe worth note; to reprooue
  the slaunders spred of him: many things merry,
  nothing hurtfull.

  _Written by himselfe to satisfie his friends._



  Printed by _E. A._ for _Nicholas Ling_, and are to be
  solde at his shop at the west doore of Saint
  Paules Church 1600.

  To the true Ennobled Lady, and his most bountifull Mistris, Mistris
    Anne Fitton, Mayde of Honour to the most sacred Mayde, Royall Queene

Honorable Mistris, in the waine of my litle wit I am forst to desire
your protection, else euery Ballad-singer will proclaime me bankrupt of
honesty. A sort{1:6} of mad fellows, seeing me merrily dispos'd in a
Morrice, haue so bepainted mee in print since my gambols began from
London to Norwich, that (hauing but an ill face before) I shall appeare
to the world without a face, if your fayre hand wipe not away their
foule coulors. One hath written _Kemps farewell_ to the tune of Kery,
mery, Buffe;{1:11} another, His desperate daungers in his late trauaile;
the third, His entertainement to New-Market; which towne I came neuer
neere by the length of halfe the heath. Some sweare, in a
Trenchmore{1:14} I haue trode a good way to winne the world; others that
guesse righter, affirme, I haue without good help daunst my selfe out of
the world; many say many thinges that were neuer thought. But, in a
word, your poore seruant offers the truth of his progresse and profit to
your honorable view: receiue it, I beseech you, such as it is, rude and
plaine; for I know your pure iudgement lookes as soone to see beauty in
a Blackamoore, or heare smooth speech from a Stammerer, as to finde any
thing but blunt mirth in a Morrice dauncer, especially such a one as
Will Kemp, that hath spent his life in mad Iigges{2:2} and merry iestes.
Three reasons mooue mee to make publik this iourney: one to reproue
lying fooles I neuer knew; the other to cōmend louing friends, which
by the way I daily found; the third to shew my duety to your honorable
selfe, whose fauours (among other bountifull friends) makes me (dispight
of this sad world) iudge my hart Corke and my heeles feathers, so that
me thinkes I could flye to Rome (at least hop to Rome, as the olde
Prouerb is) with a morter on my head.{2:8} In which light conceite I
lowly begge pardon and leaue, for my Tabrer strikes his huntsup{2:11}, I
must to Norvvich: Imagine, noble Mistris, I am now setting from my Lord
Mayors, the houre about seauen, the morning gloomy, the company many, my
hart merry.

  Your worthy Ladiships most
  vnworthy seruant,



  Wherein euery dayes iourney is pleasantly set downe, to satisfie
    his friends the truth against all lying Ballad-makers; what he did,
    how hee was welcome, and by whome entertained.

       *       *       *       *       *

The first daies iourney, being the first Munday in cleane Lent, from the
right honorable the Lord Mayors of London.

The first mundaye in Lent, the close morning promising a cleere day,
(attended on by Thomas Slye{3:10} my Taberer, William Bee my seruant,
and George Sprat, appointed for my ouerseer, that I should take no other
ease but my prescribed order) my selfe, thats I, otherwise called
Caualiero Kemp, head-master of Morrice-dauncers, high Head-borough of
heighs, and onely tricker of your Trill-lilles and best
bel-shangles{3:15} betweene Sion and mount Surrey,[3:1] began frolickly
to foote it from the right honorable the Lord Mayors of London towards
the right worshipfull (and truely bountifull) Master Mayors of Norwich.

My setting forward was somewhat before seauen in the morning; my Taberer
stroke up merrily; and as fast as kinde peoples thronging together would
giue mee leaue, thorow London I leapt. By the way many good olde people,
and diuers others of yonger yeers, of meere kindnes gaue me bowd
sixepences and grotes, blessing me with their harty prayers and

Being past White-chappell, and hauing left faire London with all that
North-east Suburb before named, multitudes of Londoners left not me: but
eyther to keepe a custome which many holde, that Mile-end is no walke
without a recreatiō at Stratford Bow with Creame and Cakes, or else
for loue they beare toward me, or perhappes to make themselues merry if
I should chance (as many thought) to giue over my Morrice within a Mile
of Mile-end; how euer, many a thousand brought me to Bow; where I rested
a while from dancing, but had small rest with those that would haue
vrg'd me to drinking. But, I warrant you, Will Kemp was wise enough: to
their ful cups, kinde thanks was my returne, with Gentlemanlike
protestations, as "Truely, sir, I dare not," "It stands not with the
congruity of my health." Congruitie, said I? how came that strange
language in my mouth? I thinke scarcely that it is any Christen worde,
and yet it may be a good worde for ought I knowe, though I neuer made
it, nor doe verye well understand it; yet I am sure I have bought it at
the word-mongers at as deare a rate as I could haue had a whole 100 of
Bauines{4:18} at the wood-mongers. Farwell, Congruitie, for I meane now
to be more concise, and stand upon eeuener bases; but I must neither
stand nor sit, the Tabrer strikes alarum. Tickle it, good Tom, Ile
follow thee. Farwell, Bowe; haue ouer the bridge, where I heard say
honest Conscience was once drownd: its pittye if it were so; but thats
no matter belonging to our Morrice, lets now along to Stratford Langton.

Many good fellows being there met, and knowing how well I loued the
sporte, had prepared a Beare-bayting; but so unreasonable were the
multitudes of people, that I could only heare the Beare roare and the
dogges howle; therefore forward I went with my hey-de-gaies{4:30} to
Ilford, where I againe rested, and was by the people of the towne and
countrey there-about very very wel welcomed, being offred carowses in
the great spoon,[4:1] one whole draught being able at that time to haue
drawne my little wit drye; but being afrayde of the olde Prouerbe (He
had need of a long spoone that eates with the deuill), I soberly gaue my
boone Companyons the slip.

From Ilford, by Moone-shine, I set forward, dauncing within a quarter of
a myle of Romford; where, in the highway, two strong Iades (hauing
belike some great quarrell to me vnknowne) were beating and byting
either of other; and such through Gods help was my good hap, that I
escaped their hoofes, both being raysed with their fore feete ouer my
head, like two Smithes ouer an Anuyle.

There being the end of my first dayes Morrice, a kinde Gentleman of
London lighting from his horse, would haue no nay but I should leap into
his saddle. To be plaine with ye, I was not proud, but kindly tooke his
kindlyer offer, chiefely thereto vrg'd by my wearines; so I rid to my
Inne at Romford.

In that towne, to giue rest to my well-labour'd limbes, I continued two
dayes, being much beholding to the townsmen for their loue, but more to
the Londoners that came hourely thither in great numbers to visite me,
offring much more kindnes then I was willing to accept.

The second dayes iourney, beeing Thursday of the first weeke.

Thursday being Market day at Burnt-wood, Tom Slye was earlyer up then
the Lark, and sounded merrily the Morrice: I rowsed my selfe, and
returned from Romford to the place wher I tooke horse the first night,
dauncing that quarter of a myle backe againe thorow Romford, and so
merily to Burnt-wood. Yet, now I remember it well, I had no great cause
of mirth, for at Romford townes end I strained my hip, and for a time
indured exceeding paine; but being loath to trouble a Surgeon, I held
on, finding remedy by labour that had hurt mee, for it came in a turne,
and so in my daunce I turned it out of my seruice againe.

The multitudes were so great at my comming to Burntwood, that I had much
a doe (though I made many intreaties and staies) to get passage to my

In this towne two Cut-purses were taken, that with other two of their
companions followed mee from Lōdon (as many better disposed persons
did): but these two dy-doppers{6:9} gaue out when they were apprehended,
that they had laid wagers and betted about my iourney; wherupon the
Officers bringing them to my Inne, I iustly denyed their acquaintance,
sauing that I remembred one of them to be a noted Cut-purse, such a one
as we tye to a poast on our stage, for all people to wonder at, when at
a play they are taken pilfring{6:13}.

This fellow, and his half-brother, being found with the deed, were sent
to Iayle: their other two consorts had the charity of the towne, and
after a dance of Trenchmore{6:18} at the whipping crosse, they were sent
backe to London, where I am afraide there are too many of their
occupation. To bee short, I thought myselfe well rid of foure such
followers, and I wish hartily that the whole world were cleer of such

Hauing rested well at Burntwood, the Moone shining clearely, and the
weather being calme, in the euening I tript it to Ingerstone, stealing
away from those numbers of people that followed mee; yet doe I what I
could, I had aboue fiftie in the company, some of London, the other of
the Country thereabout, that would needs, when they heard my Taber,
trudge after me through thicke and thin.

The third dayes iourney, being Friday of the first weeke.

On Friday morning I set forward towardes Chelmsford, not hauing past two
hundred, being the least company that I had in the day-time betweene
London and that place. Onward I went, thus easily followed, till I come
to Witford-bridge, where a number of country people, and many Gentlemen
and Gentlewomen were gathered together to see mee. Sir Thomas Mildmay,
standing at his Parke pale{7:7}, receiued gently a payre of garters of
me; gloues, points{7:9}, and garters, being my ordinary marchandize,
that I put out to venter for performance of my merry voyage{7:9}.

So much a doe I had to passe by the people at Chelmsford, that it was
more than an houre ere I could recouer my Inne gate, where I was faine
to locke my selfe in my Chamber, and pacifie them with wordes out of a
window insteed of deeds: to deale plainely, I was so weary, that I could
dance no more.

The next morning I footed it three myle of my way toward Braintree, but
returned backe againe to Chelmsford, where I lay that Satterday and the
next Sunday. The good cheere and kinde welcome I had at Chelmsford was
much more than I was willing to entertaine; for my onely desire was to
refraine drinke and be temperate in my dyet.

At Chelmsford, a Mayde not passing foureteene yeares of age, dwelling
with one Sudley, my kinde friend, made request to her Master and Dame
that she might daunce the Morrice with me in a great large roome. They
being intreated, I was soone wonne to fit her with bels{7:26}; besides
she would haue the olde fashion, with napking on her armes{7:26}; and to
our iumps we fell. A whole houre she held out; but then being ready to
lye downe I left her off; but thus much in her praise, I would haue
challenged the strongest man in Chelmsford, and amongst many I thinke
few would haue done so much.

The fourth dayes iourney, beeing Munday of the second weeke.

On Munday morning, very early, I rid the 3 myles that I daunst the
satterday before; where alighting, my Taberer strucke up, and lightly I
tript forward; but I had the heauiest way that euer mad Morrice-dancer
trod; yet,

    With hey and ho, through thicke and thin,
      The hobby horse quite forgotten{8:8},
    I follow'd, as I did begin,
      Although the way were rotten.

This foule way I could finde no ease in, thicke woods being on eyther
side the lane; the lane likewise being full of deep holes, sometimes I
skipt vp to the waste; but it is an old Prouerb, that it is a little
comfort to the miserable to haue companions, and amidst this miry way I
had some mirth by an vnlookt for accident.

It was the custome of honest Country fellows, my vnknowne friends, upon
hearing of my Pype (which might well be heard in a still morning or
euening a myle), to get vp and beare mee company a little way. In this
foule way two pretty plaine youthes watcht me, and with their kindnes
somewhat hindred me. One, a fine light fellow, would be still before me,
the other euer at my heeles. At length, comming to a broad plash{8:23}
of water and mud, which could not be auoyded, I fetcht a rise, yet fell
in ouer the anckles at the further end. My youth that follow'd me tooke
his iump, and stuck fast in the midst, crying out to his companion,
"Come, George, call yee this dauncing? Ile goe no further," for, indeede
hee could goe no further, till his fellow was faine to wade and help him
out. I could not chuse but lough to see howe like two frogges they
laboured: a hartye farwell I gaue them, and they faintly bad God speed
me, saying if I daunst that durtie way this seauen yeares againe, they
would neuer daunce after me.

Well, with much a doo I got unto Braintree by noone, tarried there
Munday night and the next day; onely I daunst three miles on Tewsday, to
ease my Wednesdaies iourney.

If I should deny that I was welcome at Braintree, I should slander an
honest crew of kind men, among whome I far'd well, slept well, and was
euery way well usde.

The fift dayes iourney, being Wednesday of the second weeke.

Taking aduantage of my 3 miles that I had daunst y^e day before, this
wednesday morning I tript it to Sudbury; whether came to see a very
kinde Gentleman, Master Foskew, that had before trauailed a foote from
London to Barwick, who, giuing me good counsaile to obserue temperate
dyet for my health, and other aduise to bee carefull of my company,
besides his liberall entertainment, departed, leauing me much indebted
to his loue.

In this towne of Sudbury there came a lusty, tall fellow, a butcher by
his profession, that would in a Morrice keepe mee company to Bury: I
being glad of his friendly offer, gaue him thankes, and forward wee did
set; but ere euer wee had measur'd halfe a mile of our way, he gaue me
ouer in the plain field, protesting, that if he might get a 100 pound,
he would not hold out with me; for indeed my pace in dauncing is not

As he and I were parting, a lusty Country lasse being among the people,
cal'd him faint hearted lout, saying, "If I had begun to daunce, I would
haue held out one myle though it had cost my life." At which wordes many
laughed. "Nay," saith she, "if the Dauncer will lend me a leash of his
belles, Ile venter to treade one mile with him my selfe." I lookt vpon
her, saw mirth in her eies, heard boldnes in her words, and beheld her
ready to tucke vp her russet petticoate; I fitted her with bels, which
[s]he merrily taking, garnisht her thicke short legs, and with a smooth
brow bad the Tabrer begin. The Drum strucke; forward marcht I with my
merry Maydemarian, who shooke her fat sides, and footed it merrily to
Melfoord, being a long myle. There parting with her, I gaue her (besides
her skinfull of drinke) an English crowne to buy more drinke; for, good
wench, she was in a pittious heate: my kindnes she requited with
dropping some dozen of short courtsies, and bidding God blesse the
Dauncer. I bad her adieu; and to giue her her due, she had a good eare,
daunst truely, and wee parted friendly. But ere I part with her, a good
fellow, my friend, hauin writ an odde Rime of her, I will make bolde to
set it downe.

    A Country Lasse, browne as a berry,
    Blith of blee{10:15}, in heart as merry,
    Cheekes well fed, and sides well larded,
    Euery bone with fat flesh guarded,
    Meeting merry Kemp by chaunce,
    Was Marrian in his Morrice daunce.
    Her stump legs with bels were garnisht,
    Her browne browes with sweating varnish[t];
    Her browne hips, when she was lag
    To win her ground, went swig a swag;
    Which to see all that came after
    Were repleate with mirthfull laughter.
    Yet she thumpt it on her way
    With a sportly hey de gay{10:27}:
    At a mile her daunce she ended,
    Kindly paide and well commended.

At Melford diuers Gentlemen met mee, who brought me to one Master
Colts, a very kinde and worshipfull Gentleman, where I had vnexpected
entertainment till the Satterday. From whose house, hauing hope somewhat
to amend my way to Bury, I determined to goe by Clare, but I found it to
be both farther and fouler.

The sixt dayes iourney, being Satterday of the second weeke.

From Wednesday night til Satterday hauing bin very troublesome but much
more welcome to master Colts, in the morning I tooke my leaue, and was
accompanied with many Gentlemen a myle of my way. Which myle master
Colts his foole would needs daunce with me, and had his desire, where
leauing me, two fooles parted faire in a foule way; I keeping on my
course to Clare, where I a while rested, and then cheerefully set
forward to Bury.

Passing from Clare towards Bury, I was inuited to the house of a very
bountifull widdow, whose husband during his life was a Yeoman of that
Countrie; dying rich no doubt, as might well appeare, by the riches and
plentie that abounded in euery corner of the house. She is called the
widdow Eueret.

At her house were met aboue thirty Gentlemen. Such, and so plentifull
variety of good fare I haue very sildome seene in any Commoners house.
Her behauiour being very modest and freendly, argued her bringing vp not
to be rude. She was a woman of good presence, and, if a foole may iudge,
of no smal discretion.

From this widdowes I daunst to Bury, comming in on the Satterday in the
afternoone, at what time the right Honorable the Lord Chiefe
Justice{11:25} entred at an other gate of the towne. The wondring and
regardles multitude making his honor cleere way, left the streetes where
he past to gape at me; the throng of them being so great that poore Will
Kemp was seauen times stayed ere hee could recouer his Inne. By reason
of the great snow that then fell, I stayd at Bury from Satterday in the
second week of my setting foorth til Thursday night the next weeke

The seauenth dayes iourney, being Friday of the third weeke.

Vpon Fryday morning I set on towardes Thetford, dauncing that tenne mile
in three houres; for I left Bury somewhat after seauen in the morning,
and was at Thetford somewhat after ten that same forenoone. But, indeed,
considering how I had been booted the other iourneys before, and that
all this way, or the most of it, was ouer a heath, it was no great
wonder; for I far'd like one that had escaped the stockes, and tride the
vse of his legs to out-run the Constable: so light was my heeles, that I
counted the ten mile no better than a leape.

At my entrance into Thetford the people came in great numbers to see
mee; for there were many there, being Size time. The noble Gentleman,
Sir Edwin Rich{12:13}, gaue me entertainment in such bountifull and
liberal sort, during my continuance there Satterday and Sunday, that I
want fitte words to expresse the least part of his worthy vsage of my
vnworthines; and to conclude liberally as hee had begun and continued,
at my departure on Munday his worship gaue me fiue pound.

The eyght dayes iourney, being Munday of the fourth weeke.

On Munday morning I daunst to Rockland ere I rested, and comming to my
Inne, where the Hoast was a very boone companion, I desired to see him;
but in no case he would be spoken with till he had shifted himselfe from
his working dayes sute. Being armed at all poyntes, from the cap to the
codpeece, his blacke shooes shining and made straght with copper buckles
of the best, his garters in the fashion, and euery garment fitting
Corremsquandam (to use his owne word), hee enters the Hall, with his
bonnet in his hand, began to crye out:

"O Kemp, deere Master Kemp! you are euen as welcome as--as--as--," and
so stammering he began to study for a fit comparison, and, I thanke him,
at last he fitted me; for saith he, "thou art euen as welcome as the
Queenes best grey-hound." After this dogged yet well-meaning salutation,
the Carrowses were called in; and my friendly Hoast of Rockland began
withall this, blessing{13:5} the houre vppon his knees, that any of the
Queenes Maiesties well-willers or friends would vouchsafe to come within
his house; as if neuer any such had been within his doores before.

I tooke his good meaning, and gaue him great thankes for his kindenesse;
and hauing rested mee well, began to take my course for Hingham, whether
my honest Hoast of Rockland would needs be my guide: but, good true
fat-belly, he had not followed mee two fieldes, but he lyes all along,
and cryes after me to come backe and speake with him. I fulfild his
request: and comming to him, "Dauncer," quoth hee, "if thou daunce a
Gods name, God speede thee! I cannot follow thee a foote farther; but
adieu, good dauncer; God speed thee, if thou daunce a Gods name!"

I, hauing haste of my way, and he being able to keep no way, there wee
parted. Farewell he: he was a kinde good fellow, a true Troyan; and if
euer be my lucke to meete him at more leasure, Ile make him full amendes
with a Cup full of Canarie. But nowe I am a little better aduis'd, wee
must not thus let my madde Hoast passe; for my friend, late mentioned
before, that made the odde rime on my Maide-marian, would needes
remember my Hoast. Such as it is, He bluntly set downe.

    He was a man{13:26} not ouer spare;
    In his eyebals dwelt no care.
    "Anon, anon," and "Welcome{13:28}, friend,"
    Were the most words he vsde to spend,
    Saue sometime he would sit and tell
    What wonders once in Bullayne fell{13:31},
    Closing each Period of his tale
    With a full cup of Nut-browne Ale.
    Turwin and Turneys siedge were hot{14:1},
    Yet all my Hoast remembers not:
    Kets field{14:3} and Muscleborough{14:3} fray
    Were battles fought but yesterday.
    "O, 'twas a goodly matter then
    To see your sword and buckler men!
    They would lye heere, and here and there,
    But I would meete them euery where:
    And now a man is but a pricke;
    A boy, arm'd with a poating sticke{14:10},
    Will dare to challenge Cutting Dicke{14:11}.
    O 'tis a world{14:12} the world to see!
    But twill not mend for thee nor mee."
    By this some guest cryes "Ho, the house!"
    A fresh friend hath a fresh carouse:
    Still he will drinke, and still be dry,
    And quaffe with euery company.
    Saint Martin send him merry mates,
    To enter at his hostree gates!
    For a blither lad than he
    Cannot an Inkeeper be.

Well, once againe farewell mine Hoast at Rockland. After all these
farewels, I am sure to Hingham I found a foule way, as before I had done
from Thetford to Rockland.

Yet, besides the deep way, I was much hindred by the desire people had
to see me. For euen as our Shop-keepers will hayle and pull a man with
"Lack ye? what do you lack, Gentlemen?"{14:27} "My ware is best," cryes
one, "Mine best in England," sayes an other, "Heere shall you haue
choyse," saith the third; so was the dyuers voyces of the young men and
Maydens, which I should meete at euerie myles ende, thronging by
twentie, and sometime fortie, yea, hundreths in a companie; one crying
"The fayrest way was thorow their Village," another, "This is the
nearest and fayrest way, when you haue past but a myle and a halfe;" an
other sort{15:2} crie "Turne on the left hand," some "On the right
hand;" that I was so amazed I knewe not sometime which way I might best
take; but haphazard, the people still accompanying me, wherewith I was
much comforted, though the wayes were badde; but as I said before at
last I ouertooke it.

The ninth dayes iourney, being Wednesday of the second weeke.

The next morning I left Hingham, not staying till I came to
Barford-bridge, fiue young men running all the way with me, for
otherwise my pace was not for footemen.

From Barford bridge I daunst to Norwich; but comming within sight of the
Citty, perceiuing so great a multitude and throng of people still
crowding more and more about me, mistrusting it would be a let{15:15} to
my determined expedition and pleasurable humour, which I long before
conceiued to delight this Citty with (so far as my best skill and
industry of my long trauelled sinewes could affoord them), I was
aduised, and so tooke ease by that aduise, to stay my Morrice a little
aboue Saint Giles his gate, where I tooke my gelding, and so rid into
the Citty, procrastinating my merry Morrice daunce through the Citty
till better opportunitie.

Being come into the Citty, Master Roger Wiler the Maior{15:23}, and
sundry other of his worshipfull Brethren, sent for me; who perceiuing
howe I intended not to daunce into the Cittye that nyght, and being well
satisfied with the reasons, they allotted me time enough not to daunce
in till Satterday after; to the end that diuers knights and Gentlemen,
together with their wiues and children (who had beene many dayes before
deceyued with expectation of my comming), might nowe haue sufficient
warning accordingly by satterday following.

In the meane space, and during my still continuaunce in the Cittye
afterwardes, they not onely very courteously offered to beare mine owne
charges and my followers, but very bountifully performed it at the
common charges: the Mayor and many of the Aldermen often times besides
inuited vs priuately to theyr seuerall houses.

To make a short end of this tedious description of my entertainment;
Satterday no sooner came but I returned without the Citty through Saint
Giles his gate, and beganne my Morrice where I left at that gate, but I
entred in at Saint Stephens gate, where one Thomas Gilbert in name of
all the rest of the Cittizens gaue me a friendly and exceeding kind
welcome; which I haue no reason to omit, vnlesse I would condemne my
selfe of ingratitude, partlye for the priuate affection of the writer
towardes me, as also for the generall loue and fauour I found in them
from the highest to the lowest, the richest as the poorest. It followes
in these few lynes.

      Master Kemp his welcome to Norwich.

    W With hart, and hand, among the rest,
    E Especially you welcome are:
    L Long looked for as welcome guest,
    C Come now at last you be from farre.
    O Of most within the Citty, sure,
    M Many good wishes you haue had;
    E Each one did pray you might indure,
    W With courage good the match you made.
    I Intend they did with gladsome hearts,
    L Like your well willers, you to meete:
    K Know you also they'l doe their parts,
    E Eyther in field or house to greete
    M More you then any with you came,
    P Procur'd thereto with trump and fame.
                              your well-willer,
                                    T. G.

Passing the gate, Wifflers{17:1} (such Officers as were appointed by
the Mayor) to make me way through the throng of the people which prest
so mightily vpon me, with great labour I got thorow that narrow
preaze{17:4} into the open market place; where on the crosse, ready
prepared, stood the Citty Waytes, which not a little refreshed my
wearines with toyling thorow so narrow a lane as the people left me:
such Waytes (under Benedicite be it spoken) fewe Citties in our Realme
haue the like, none better; who, besides their excellency in wind
instruments, their rare cunning on the Vyoll and Violin, theyr voices be
admirable, euerie one of thē able to serue in any Cathedrall Church
in Christendoome for Quiristers.

Passing by the Market place, the presse still increasing by the number
of boyes, girles, men and women, thronging more and more before me to
see the end; it was the mischaunce of a homely maide, that, belike, was
but newly crept into the fashion of long wasted peticotes tyde with
points{17:17}, and had, as it seemed, but one point tyed before, and
comming vnluckily in my way, as I was fetching a leape, it fell out that
I set my foote on her skirts: the point eyther breaking or stretching,
off fell her peticoate from her waste, but as chance was, thogh hir
smock were course, it was cleanely; yet the poore wench was so ashamed,
the rather for that she could hardly recouer her coate againe from
vnruly boies, that looking before like one that had the greene
sicknesse, now had she her cheekes all coloured with scarlet. I was
sorry for her, but on I went towards the Maiors, and deceiued the people
by leaping ouer the church-yard wall at S. Johns, getting so into M.
Mayors gates a neerer way; but at last I found it the further way about,
being forced on the Tewsday following to renew my former daunce, because
George Sprat, my ouer-seer, hauing lost me in the throng, would not be
deposed that I had daunst it, since he saw me not; and I must confesse I
did not wel, for the Cittizens had caused all the turne-pikes to be
taken vp on Satterday that I might not bee hindred. But now I returne
againe to my Jump, the measure of which is to be seene in the Guild-hall
at Norwich,{18:2} where my buskins, that I then wore and daunst in from
London thither, stand equally deuided, nailde on the wall. The plenty of
good cheere at the Mayors, his bounty and kinde vsage, together with the
general welcomes of his worshipful brethren, and many other knights,
Ladies, Gentlemen and Gentlewomen, so much exceeded my expectation, as I
adiudg'd my selfe most bound to them all. The Maior gaue me fiue pound
in Elizabeth angels{18:10}; which Maior (faire Madame, to whom I too
presumptuously dedicate my idle paces) is a man{18:11} worthy of a
singuler and impartiall admiration, if our criticke humorous mindes
could as prodigally conceiue as he deserues, for his chast life,
liberality, and temperance in possessing worldly benefits. He liues
vnmarried, and childlesse; neuer purrchased house nor land, the house he
dwels in this yeere being but hyred: he liues vpon marchandies, being a
Marchant venturer. If our marchants and gentlemen wold take example by
this man, Gentlemen would not sell their lands to become banckrout
Marchants, nor Marchants liue in the possessions of youth-beguiled
gentlemen, who cast themselues out of their parents heritages for a few
out-cast commodities{18:22}. But, wit, whither wilt thou?{18:22} What
hath Morrice tripping Will to do with that? it keeps not time w^t his
dance; therefore roome, you morral precepts, giue my legs leaue to end
my Morrice, or, that being ended, my hands leaue to perfect this
worthlesse poore tottered{18:26} volume.

Pardon me, Madame, that I am thus tedious; I cannot chuse but cōmend
sacred liberality, which makes poore wretches partakers of all
comfortable benefits: besides the loue and fauour already repeated, M.
Weild the mayor{18:30} gaue me 40.s. yeerely during my life, making me a
free man of the marchant venterers. This is the substance of al my
iourney; therefore let no man beleeue, how euer before by lying ballets
and rumors they haue bin abused, y^t either waies were laid open for me,
or that I deliuered gifts to her Maiesty. Its good being merry, my
masters, but in a meane, and al my mirths, (meane though they be) haue
bin and euer shal be imploi'd to the delight of my royal Mistris; whose
sacred name ought not to be remēbred among such ribald rimes as these
late thin-breecht lying Balletsingers haue proclaimed it.

It resteth now that in a word I shew what profit I haue made by my
Morrice. True it is I put out some money to haue threefold gaine at my
returne{19:8}: some that loue me, regard my paines, and respect their
promise, haue sent home the treble worth; some other at the first sight
haue paide me, if I came to seek thē; others I cannot see, nor wil
they willingly be found, and these are the greater number. If they had
al usd me wel, or al ill, I would haue boldly set downe the true sum of
my smal gain or losse; but I wil haue patience, some few daies lōger:
at y^e end of which time, if any be behinde, I wil draw a cattalogue of
al their names I ventur'd with; those y^t haue shewne thēselues
honest men, I wil set before them this Caracter, H. for honesty; before
the other Bench-whistlers{19:19} shal stand K. for ketlers and
keistrels{19:19}, that wil driue a good companion without need in them
to contend for his owne; but I hope I shall haue no such neede. If I
haue, your Honourable protection shall thus far defend your poore
seruant, that he may, being a plain man, call a spade a spade. Thus
fearing your Ladyship is wearier with reading this toy then I was in all
my merry trauaile, I craue pardon; and conclude this first Pamphlet that
euer Will Kemp offred to the Presse, being thereunto prest on the one
side by the pittifull papers, pasted on euery poast, of that which was
neither so nor so, and on the other side vrg'd thereto in duety to
expresse with thankefulnes the kind entertainment I found.

  Your honors poore seruant,
  W. K.

  Kemps humble request to the impudent generation of Ballad-makers
    and their coherents; that it would please their rascalities to
    pitty his paines in the great iourney he pretends{20:3}, and not
    fill the country with lyes of his neuer done actes, as they did in
    his late Morrice to Norwich.

To the tune of Thomas Delonies Epitaph.

My notable Shakerags, the effect of my sute is discouered in the Title
of my supplication; but for your better vnderstandings, for that I know
you to be a sort{20:9} of witles beetle-heads that can understand
nothing but what is knockt into your scalpes, These are by these
presentes to certifie vnto your block-headships, that I, William Kemp,
whom you had neer hand rent in sunder with your vnreasonable rimes, am
shortly, God willing, to set forward as merily as I may; whether I my
selfe know not. Wherefore, by the way, I would wish ye, imploy not your
little wits in certifying the world that I am gone to Rome, Jerusalem,
Venice, or any other place at your idle appoint. I knowe the best of ye,
by the lyes ye writ of me, got not the price of a good hat to couer your
brainles heads: if any of ye had come to me, my bounty should haue
exceeded the best of your good masters the Ballad-buiers, I wold haue
apparrelled your dry pates in party coloured bonnets, and bestowd a
leash of my cast belles to haue crown'd ye with cox-combs. I haue made a
priuie search what priuate Jigmonger{20:24} of your jolly number hath
been the Author of these abhominable ballets written of me. I was told
it was the great ballet-maker T. D., alias Tho. Deloney, Chronicler of
the memorable liues of the 6. yeomen of the west, Jack of Newbery, the
Gentle-craft{20:26}, and such like honest mē, omitted by Stow,
Hollinshead, Graftō, Hal, froysart, and the rest of those wel
deseruing writers; but I was giuen since to vnderstand your late
generall Tho. dyed poorely, as ye all must do, and was honestly buried,
which is much to bee doubted of some of you. The quest of inquiry
finding him by death acquited of the Inditement, I was let to wit y^t
another Lord of litle wit, one whose imployment for the Pageant was
vtterly spent, he being knowne to be Eldertons immediate heyre{21:7},
was vehemently suspected; but after due inquisition was made, he was at
that time knowne to liue like a man in a mist, hauing quite giuen ouer
the mistery{21:11}. Still the search continuing, I met a proper vpright
youth, onely for a little stooping in the shoulders, all hart to the
heele, a penny Poet, whose first making{21:14} was the miserable stolne
story of Macdoel, or Macdobeth{21:15}, or Macsomewhat, for I am sure a
Mac it was, though I neuer had the maw to see it; and hee tolde me there
was a fat filthy ballet-maker, that should haue once been his Journeyman
to the trade, who liu'd about the towne, and ten to one but he had thus
terribly abused me and my Taberer, for that he was able to do such a
thing in print. A shrewd presumption! I found him about the
bankside{21:21}, sitting at a play; I desired to speake with him, had
him to a Tauerne, charg'd a pipe with Tobacco, and then laid this
terrible accusation to his charge. He swels presently, like one of the
foure windes; the violence of his breath blew the Tobacco out of the
pipe, and the heate of his wrath drunke dry two bowlefuls of Rhenish
wine. At length hauing power to speake, "Name my accuser," saith he, "or
I defye thee, Kemp, at the quart staffe." I told him; and all his anger
turned to laughter, swearing it did him good to haue ill words of a
hoddy doddy{21:29}, a habber de hoy{21:30}, a chicken, a squib, a
squall{21:30}, one that hath not wit enough to make a ballet, that, by
Pol and Aedipol, would Pol his father, Derick{21:32} his dad, doe anie
thing, how ill so euer, to please his apish humor. I hardly beleeued
this youth that I tooke to be gracious had bin so graceles; but I heard
afterwards his mother in law was eye and eare witnes of his fathers
abuse by this blessed childe on a publique stage, in a merry Hoast of an
Innes part. Yet all this while could not I finde out the true
ballet-maker, till by chaunce a friend of mine puld out of his pocket a
booke in Latine, called Mundus Furiosus{22:6}, printed at Cullen,
written by one of the vildest and arrantest lying Cullians{22:7} that
euer writ booke, his name Jansonius, who, taking vpon him to write an
abstract of all the turbulent actions that had beene lately attempted or
performed in Christendome, like an vnchristian wretch, writes onely by
report, partially, and scoffingly of such whose pages shooes hee was
vnworthy to wipe, for indeed he is now dead: farewell he! euery dog must
haue a day. But see the luck on't: this beggerly lying busie-bodies name
brought out the Ballad-maker{22:13}, and, it was generally confirmd, it
was his kinsman: he confesses himselfe guilty, let any man looke on his
face; if there be not so redde a colour that all the sope in the towne
will not washe white, let me be turned to a Whiting as I passe betweene
Douer and Callis. Well, God forgiue thee, honest fellow, I see thou hast
grace in thee; I prethee do so no more, leaue writing these beastly
ballets, make not good wenches Prophetesses, for litle or no profit, nor
for a sixe-penny matter reuiue not a poore fellowes fault thats hanged
for his offence; it may be thy owne destiny one day; prethee be good to
them. Call vp thy olde Melpomene, whose straubery quill may write the
bloody lines of the blew Lady, and the Prince of the burning crowne; a
better subiect, I can tell ye, than your Knight of the Red Crosse. So,
farewel, and crosse me no more, I prethee, with thy rabble of bald
rimes, least at my returne I set a crosse on thy forehead that all men
may know thee for a foole.



[3:1] Sion neere Brainford, and Mount Surrey by Norwich _(Marg. note in
old ed.)_.

[4:1] A great spoone in Ilford, holding aboue a quart _(Marg. note in
old ed.)_.


Page 1, line 2, Mistris Anne Fitton, Mayde of Honour to ... Queene
Elizabeth.]--A _Mary_ Fitton, daughter to Sir Edward Fitton, of
Gawsworth, and _maid of honour to Queen Elizabeth_, is mentioned by
Ormerod, _Hist. of Cheshire_, iii. 293; and "_Mrs._ Fitton" is noticed
as holding that office in several letters of Rowland Whyte, printed
among the _Sydney Papers_. It seems unlikely that the Queen should have
had two maids of honour called Fitton; and yet we can hardly suppose
that Kemp mistook the Christian name of his patroness. I may add, that
an examination of Sir E. Fitton's will in the Prerogative Court has
proved to me that his daughter was named _Mary_.

P. 1, l. 6, sort.]--set, band.

P. 1, l. 11, Kery, mery, Buffe.]--Compare Nash's _Haue with you to
Saffron-walden_, 1596, "Yea, without _kerry merry buffe_ be it spoken,"
&c. Sig. F. 4; and Middleton's _Blurt Master Constable_, "Tricks,
tricks; _kerry merry buff_." Act i. sc. 1; _Works_, i. 235, ed. Dyce.

P. 1, l. 14. Trenchmore.]--a boisterous sort of dance to a lively tune
in triple time.

P. 2, l. 2, Jigges.]--See Introduction.

P. 2, l. 8, I could flye to Rome (at least hop to Rome, as the olde
Proverb is) with a morter on my head.]--So in Fletcher's _Fair Maid of
the Inn_, "He did measure the stars with a false yard, and may now
_travel to Rome with a mortar on 's head_, to see if he can recover his
money that way," Act v. sc. 2, _Works_, ix. 498, ed. Weber; and in
Middleton and Rowley's _Spanish Gipsy_, "A cousin of mine in _Rome,
I['ll] go to him with a mortar_," Act ii. sc. 2, Middleton's _Works_,
iv. 135, ed. Dyce.

P. 2, l. 11, huntsup.]--a tune played to rouse the sportsmen in a

P. 3, l. 10, Thomas Slye.]--A relation, probably, of William Slye,
the actor.

P. 3, l. 15, bel-shangles.]--A cant term, which is also used by Nash:
"Canonizing euerie _Bel-shangles_ the water-bearer for a Saint."--_Haue
with you to Saffron-walden_, 1596, Sig. I.

P. 4, l. 18, Bauines.]--small faggots.

P. 4, l. 30, hey-de-gaies.]--a kind of rural dance: the word is
variously written.

P. 6, l. 9, dy-doppers.]--didappers, dabchicks.

P. 6, l. 13, a noted Cut-purse, such a one as we tye to a poast on our
stage, for all people to wonder at, when at a play they are taken
pilfring.]--Mr. Collier, who has cited the present passage, observes,
that this method of treating cutpurses, when detected at theatres, is no
where else adverted to by any writer.--_Hist. of Engl. Dram. Poet._ iii.

P. 6, l. 18, Trenchmore.]--See note, p. 25.

P. 6, l. 22, companions.]--scurvy fellows--a play on the word.

P. 7, l. 7, Sir Thomas Mildmay, standing at his Parke pale.]--Sir
Thomas Mildmay, Knt., of Moulsham-hall. He married the Lady Frances,
only daughter, by his second wife, of Henry Ratcliffe, Lord Fitzwalter
and Earl of Sussex; from which marriage his descendants derived their
title and claim to the Barony of Fitzwalter. He died in 1608.--Morant's
_Hist. of Essex_, ii. 2; Dugdale's _Baron._ ii. 288.

P. 7, l. 9, points.]--tagged laces.

P. 7, l. 9, being my ordinary marchandize, that I put out to venter
for performance of my merry voyage.]--This "marchandize" was instead of
a deposit in money: but we learn from a passage towards the end of the
tract (p. 19), that our Morrice-dancer had also "put out some money to
have threefold gain at his return,"--it being then a common custom for
those who undertook expeditions to put out sums of money on condition of
receiving them back trebled, quadrupled, or quintupled, at the
completion of the voyages or journies. Kemp (_ibid._) complains that the
greater number of those with whom he had deposited money would not
"willingly be found:" compare _A Kicksey Winsey, or, A Lerry
Come-twang; Wherein John Taylor hath Satyrically suted seuen hundred and
fifty of his bad debtors, that will not pay him for his returne of his
iourney from Scotland_. Taylor the Water-poet's _Workes_, 1630, p. 36.

P. 7, l. 26, bels.]--"The number of bells round each leg of the
morris-dancers amounted from twenty to forty. They had various
appellations, as the fore-bell, the second bell, the treble, the tenor,
the base, and the double-bell. Sometimes they used trebles only; but
these refinements were of later times. The bells were occasionally
jingled by the hands, or placed on the arms or wrists of the
parties."--Douce's _Illust. of Shakespeare_, ii. 475. The same writer
mentions that in the time of Henry the Eighth the Morris-dancers had
"garters to which bells were attached," 473.

P. 7, l. 26, the olde fashion, with napking on her armes.]--"The
handkerchiefs, or napkins, as they are sometimes called, were held in
the hand, or tied to the shoulders." Douce, _ubi supra_, 475.

P. 8, l. 8, The hobby-horse quite forgotten.]--When the present tract
was written, the Puritans, by their preachings and invectives, had
succeeded in banishing this prominent personage from the Morris-dance,
as an impious and pagan superstition. The expression in our text seems
to have been almost proverbial; besides the well-known line cited in
Shakespeare's _Hamlet_, Act iii. sc. 2, (and in his _Love's Labours
Lost_, Act iii. sc. 1.)

    "For, O, for, O, the hobby-horse is forgot,"

parallel passages are to be found in various other early dramas. As the
admirable scene in Sir Walter Scott's _Abbot_, I. ch. xiv. (_Wav.
Novels_, xx.) must be familiar to every reader, a description of the
hobby-horse is unnecessary.

P. 8, l. 23, plash.]--pool.

P. 10, l. 15, blee.]--complexion, countenance.

P. 10, l. 27, hey de gay.]--See note, p. 26.

P. 11, l. 25, the Lord Chiefe Justice.]--Sir John Popham: he was
appointed Chief Justice of the King's Bench in 1592.

P. 12, l. 13, Sir Edwin Rich.]--Third son of Robert Lord Rich, was
knighted at Cadiz in June 1596: see Account of the expedition to Cadiz
in Hakluyt's _Voyages_, I. 617. ed. 1599 (where, by mistake, he is
called Sir _Edmund_), and Stow's _Annales_, p. 775. ed. 1631. About
three years after, he purchased the manor of Mulbarton in Norfolk from
William Gresham, Esq. In 1604, when Sir Anthony Shirley went as
ambassador from the Emperor of Germany to the King of Morocco, in his
suite was Sir Edwin Rich, "whose behauiour was good, and well spoken of
in euery place where he came," &c. He married Honora, daughter of
Charles Worlick, Esq.; and died, and was buried (I know not in what
year) at Hartlepool. A monument is erected to his memory, and to that of
his sons, Robert and Sir Edwin, in Mulbarton church. Collins's _Baron._
III. P. ii. 592. ed. 1741; Le Neve's _Mon. Angl._ Suppl. 113; Purchas's
_Pilgrimes_, Sec. Part. p. 863. ed. 1625; Blomefield's _Hist. of Norf._
III. 52.

P. 13, l. 5, began withall this, blessing, &c.]--Old ed. "began with.
All this: blessing," &c.

P. 13, l. 26, He was a man, &c.]--Warton thinks that this description
of the Innkeeper at Rockland, "which could not be written by Kemp, was
most probably a contribution from his friend and fellow player
Shakespeare [?]. He may vie with our Host of the Tabard." _Hist. of Eng.
Poet._ IV. 63, ed. 4to.

P. 13, l. 28, Welcome.]--"coming," apud Warton (ubi supra, 64,) by

P. 13, l. 31, What wonders once in Bullayne fell.]--At the siege of
Boulogne: on the 14th of Sept. 1544, it surrendered to Henry the Eighth,
who entered it in triumph on the 18th of the month.

P. 14, l. 1, Turwin and Turneys siedge were hot.]--After the Battle of
the Spurs, which took place August 16th, 1513, Terouenne surrendered to
Henry the Eighth on the 22nd of that month, and on the 27th its defences
were razed to the ground: Tournay surrendered to the English monarch on
the 29th of the ensuing September. Historians differ somewhat as to the
dates of these events: I have followed Lingard.

P. 14, l. 3, Kets field.]--The battle near Norwich, August 27th, 1549,
when the Earl of Warwick routed Ket and the Norfolk rebels.

P. 14, l. 3, Muscleborough fray.]--The battle of Pinkey, in which the
Protector Somerset defeated the Scots with great slaughter, September
10th, 1547.

P. 14, l. 10, poating sticke.]--Or _poking-stick_, an instrument for
setting the plaits of ruffs. Poting-sticks were originally made of wood
or bone; afterwards of steel, that they might be used hot.

P. 14, l. 11, Cutting Dicke.]--Is thus mentioned by Wither:

    "Yet this is nothing; if they looke for fame,
    And meane to haue an everlasting name
    Amongst the Vulgar, let them seeke for gaine
    With Ward the Pirat on the boisterous maine;
    Or else well mounted keepe themselues on land,
    And bid our wealthy trauellers to stand,
    Emptying their full-cram'd bags; for that's a tricke
    Which sometimes wan renoune to _Cutting Dicke_."

    _Abvses Stript and Whipt_, Lib. II. Sat. 2. Sig. P. ed. 1613.

From the following entry by Henslowe we learn that this worthy figured
in a play: "Pd. unto Thomas Hewode, the 20th of september [1602], for
the new adycions of _Cutting Dick_, the some of xxs." Malone's
_Shakespeare_, (by Boswell,) III. 333.

P. 14, l. 12, 'tis a world.]--Equivalent to--it is a wonder.

P. 14, l. 27, Lack ye? what do you lack, Gentlemen?]--The usual
address of the London tradesmen to those who passed by their shops,
which were formerly open like booths or stalls at a fair.

P. 15, l. 2, sort.]--set, band.

P. 15, l. 15, let.]--hindrance.

P. 15, l. 23, Master Roger Wiler the Maior.]--An error, it would seem,
not of the author, but of the printer, for afterwards (p. 18), the name
is given more correctly, _Weild_. In the list of Mayors of Norwich
during Elizabeth's reign, drawn up by Blomefield, we find--

  "1598, Francis Rugg, 2.
   1599, _Roger Weld_.
   1600, Alex. Thurston."

  _Hist. of Norf._ ii. 252.

P. 17, l. 1, Wifflers.]--Persons who clear the way for a procession:
see Douce's _Ill. of Shakespeare_, I. 506. I may just notice that when
Grose compiled his _Prov. Gloss._, the word _whifflers_ had not become
obsolete in the city of which Kemp is now speaking.

P. 17, l. 4, preaze.]--press.

P. 17, l. 17, points.]--tagged laces.

P. 18, l. 2, my Jump, the measure of which is to be seene in the
Guild-hall at Norwich, &c.]--It is hardly necessary to inform the
reader that no memorial of Kemp is now extant in that building.

P. 18, l. 10, angels.]--Gold coins, worth about 10s. each.

P. 18, l. 11, is a man.]--Old ed. "as _a man_."

P. 18, l. 22, commodities.]--goods, in which needy prodigals took
either part or whole of the sum they wanted to borrow, and for which
they gave a bond: these commodities (sometimes consisting of brown
paper!) they were to turn into ready money. Our early writers have
innumerable allusions to the custom.

P. 18, l. 22, wit, whither wilt thou?]--A kind of proverbial
expression, by no means unfrequent: see, for instance, Shakespeare's _As
you like it_, Act iv. sc. 1.

P. 18, l. 26, tottered.]--tattered.

P. 18, l. 30, M. Weild the mayor.]--See note, p. 29.

P. 19, l. 8, I put out some money to haue threefold gaine at my
returne.] See note, p. 26.

P. 19, l. 19, Bench-whistlers.]--perhaps, sottish idlers on ale-house
benches; see Gifford's note in B. Jonson's _Works_, i. 103.

P. 19, l. 19, ketlers and keistrels.]--The first of these terms I am
unable to explain; but it occurs in Middleton's _Black Book_, "So,
drawing in amongst bunglers and _ketlers_ under the plain frieze of
simplicity, thou mayest finely couch the wrought velvet of knavery;" and
in his _Father Hubburd's Tales_, we find "like an old cunning bowler to
fetch in a young _ketling_ gamester:" see Middleton's _Works_, v. 543,
589, ed. Dyce. _Keistrels_ are hawks of a worthless and degenerate

P. 20, l. 3, pretends.]--intends.

P. 20, l. 9, sort.]--set, band.

P. 20, l. 24, Jigmonger.]--ballad maker.

P. 20, l. 26, the great ballet-maker T. D., alias Tho. Deloney,
Chronicler of the memorable liues of the 6. yeomen of the west, Jack of
Newbery, the Gentle-craft.]--Thomas Deloney succeeded Elderton as the
most popular ballad-writer of the time: for an account of his poetical
pieces, see Ritson's _Bibl. Poet._ and Collier's _Hist. of Engl. Dram.
Poet._ iii. 100. The pleasing ballad of _Fair Rosamond_, reprinted in
Percy's _Rel. of An. Engl. Poet._ ii. 143. ed. 1794, is probably the
composition of Deloney, as it is found in more than one of his
publications. In 1596, had he not eluded the search of the Mayor of
London, he would have been punished for writing "a certain Ballad,
containing a Complaint of great Want and Scarcity of Corn within the
Realm ... bringing in the Queen speaking with her People Dialogue-wise,
in very fond and undecent sort," &c., Stow's _Survey_, B. v. 333. ed.
1720, where he is described as "an idle Fellow, and one noted with the
like Spirit in printing a Book for the Silk Weavers, wherein was found
some such like foolish and disorderly matter." Nash terms him "the
Balletting Silke-weauer," _Haue with you to Saffron-walden_, 1596, Sig.
N. 3. Deloney was no less celebrated among the vulgar for his
prose-romances than for his ballads. _Thomas of Reading, or the sixe
worthie Yeomen of the West_, is noticed in the present passage as a
well-known work, and was dramatized in 1601 (Malone's _Shakespeare_, by
Boswell, iii. 325-6; Collier's _Hist. of Engl. Dram. Poet._ iii. 99),
but no impression has been discovered earlier than the fourth, 1612,
4to: this tale is reprinted in Thoms's _Early Prose Rom._ i. Of _The
pleasant Historie of John Winchcomb, in his younguer yeares called Jack
of Newbery, the famous and worthy Clothier of England; declaring his
life and loue, together with his charitable deeds and great
Hospitalitie_, &c., the earliest edition extant is the eighth, 1619,
4to: its entry in the Stationers' Books stands thus:

                            "7 Maii [1596].

  "Tho. Millington    Entered for his copie a book          }
                      called Jack of Newbery So             }  vi^d."
                      that he haue yt lawfully aucthorised  }

  (_Liber_ C. fol. 19)

_The Gentle Craft, A most merry and pleasant History, not altogether
vnprofitable, nor any way hurtfull: very fit to passe away the
tediousnes of the long winters euenings_, in Two Parts, 1598, 4to., is
probably the first edition, for the following entry in the Stationers'
Books seems to relate to it:

                            "19^o Octobris [1597]

  "Raphe Blore        Entred for his copie vnder thande     }
                      of Mr. Dix and Mr. Man a booke        } vi^d."
                      called The gentle crafte intreatinge  }
                      of Shoomakers....                     }

  (_Liber_ C. fol. 25.)

Verses of various kinds are inserted in these novels.

P. 21, l. 7, one whose imployment for the Pageant was vtterly spent, he
being knowne to be Eldertons immediate heyre.]--An allusion to Anthony
Munday. During a long life he figured in various capacities,--as a
player, an apprentice to Allde the printer, a retainer of the Earl of
Oxford, a Messenger of her Majesty's Chamber, Poet to the City,
dramatist, writer in verse and prose, and draper. He also excited
considerable attention, and drew much trouble on himself, by his efforts
in detecting the treasonable practices of the Jesuits. According to the
inscription on his monument in the church of St. Stephen, Coleman
Street, he died in his 80th year, August 10th 1633. (Stow's _Survey_, B.
iii. 61. ed. 1720.) For a fuller account of Munday and his writings, see
Chalmers's _Biog. Dict._, Collier's _Supplementary volume to Dodsley's
Old Plays_, Warton's _Hist. of Engl. Poet._, iii., 290, _seq._ ed. 4to.,
_Ritson's Bibl. Poet._, and Lowndes's _Bibl. Man._ His _Downfall of
Robert Earl of Huntington_, and _Death of Robert_, &c. (in the latter of
which, if not in the former, he was assisted by Chettle) are reprinted
by Mr. Collier in the volume just mentioned; his _English Romayne Life;
Discovering the Lives of the Englishmen at Rome, the orders of the
English Seminarie, &c._ and his _Banquet of daintie Conceits, &c._ may
be found in _The Harl. Miscell._ VII. 136, IX. 219, ed. Park; his
_Triumphes of Reunited Britania_, _Metropolis Coronata_, and
_Crysanaleia, the Golden Fishing_, are included in Nichols's _Prog. of
K. James_, i. 564, iii. 107, 195; and extracts from his translations of
various romances are given in Sir E. Brydges's _Brit. Bibl._ i. 225,
135, ii. 561.

Gifford thinks it probable that most of the annual pageants from 1591
to the death of Elizabeth were produced by Munday (Note on B. Jonson's
_Works_, vi. 328). Though Kemp declares here that his "imployment for
the pageant was utterly spent," yet Anthony furnished the city shows for
1605, 1611, and (in spite of an attack made on him by Middleton in
1613--see my ed. of Middleton's _Works_, v. 219, note), for 1614, 1615,
and 1616.

Except a "Song of Robin Hood and his Huntesmen" in _Metropolis
Coronata_, I am not aware that any of Munday's ballads are
extant--unless indeed the "ditties" in _The Banquet of daintie Conceits_
may be regarded as such; but there is no doubt that they were numerous,
and hence, in the present passage, he is termed the "immediate heyre" of
William Elderton. This personage,--who is said to have been, at
different periods of his life, an actor, the master of a company of
players, and an attorney in the Sheriff's Court, London,--obtained great
notoriety by his ballads. See a list of his pieces in Ritson's _Bibl.
Poet._: vide also Warton's _Hist. of Engl. Poet._ iv. 40, ed. 4to. His
song "The God of love," &c. (of which a puritanical moralization still
exists) is quoted in Shakespeare's _Much ado about Nothing_, act v. sc.
2. His _Verses on the Images over the Guild-hall Gate_ may be read in
Stow's _Survey_, B. iii. 41, ed. 1720; his ballad of _The King of Scots
and Andrew Browne_, in Percy's _Rel. of An. Engl. Poet._ ii. 207, ed.
1794; his _New Yorkshyre Song_, in Evans's _Old Ballads_, i. 20, ed.
1810; and his _Newes from Northumberland_, _The Dekaye of the Duke_,
_The daungerous Shooting of the Gunne at the Court_ and _A moorning Diti
upon Henry Earl of Arundel_, in _The Harl. Miscell._ X. 267, _seq._ ed.
Park. Elderton appears to have ceased pouring forth his doggrel about
the time that Deloney began to write. In 1592 he was dead: see Nash's
_Strange Newes, Of the intercepting certaine Letters_, &c., 1592, Sig.
D. 4. He was nearly as famous for drinking as for rhyming: of two
epitaphs on him, preserved by Camden, I subjoin the first:

    "Hic situs est sitiens, atque ebrius Eldertonus;
      Quid dico, hic situs est? hic potius sitis est."

    _Remaines--Epitaphes_, 56, ed. 1605.

P. 21, l. 11, mistery.]--art, trade.

P. 21, l. 14, making.]--poetical composition.

P. 21, l. 15, Macdobeth.]--This mention of a piece anterior to
Shakespeare's tragedy on the same subject has escaped the commentators.

P. 21, l. 21, the bankside.]--In Southwark, where the Globe and other
theatres were situated.

P. 21, l. 29, hoddy doddy.]--A term of contempt, which occurs in B.
Jonson's _Every Man in his Humour_, Act iv. sc. 8, _Works_, i. 141, ed.
Gifford, and is used by a comparatively recent writer, Swift. See
Richardson's _Dict._ in v.

P. 21, l. 30, habber de hoy.]--"A _Hober-de-hoy_, half a man and half
a boy." Ray's _Proverbs_, p. 57, ed. 1768.--The word is variously
written: see Jamieson's _Et. Dict. of Scot. Lang._ in v. _Hobbledehoy_.

P. 21, l. 30, squall.]--probably, poor effeminate creature. Taylor,
the water-poet, describes the rich foolish gallant calling his harlot,

    "Ducke, Lambe, _Squall_, Sweet-heart, Cony, and his Doue."

    _A Whore_, p. 112.--_Workes_, 1630.

and Middleton, who employs the word several times, seems to use it in
the sense of wench: see his _Works_, iii. 55, v. 575. ed. Dyce.

P. 21, l. 32, Derick.]--hang,--the name of the common hangman when
this tract was written: he is frequently mentioned in our old plays.

P. 22, l. 6, Mundus Furiosus.]--_Mundi Fvriosi sive P. A. Iansonii
Narra[tio]nis Rervm Tota Europa Gestarum, Continvatio ab Anno 1597 vsque
ad annum præsentem 1600._ _Coloniæ_, 1600, 8vo.

P. 22, l. 7, Cullians.]--scoundrels.

P. 22, l. 13, this beggerly lying busie-bodies name brought out the
Ballad-maker.]--Kemp, I conceive, alludes here to Richard Johnson, who
is still remembered by his _Famous Historie of the Seuen Champions of
Christendome_, in two Parts, of which the earliest extant edition
(_what_ edition the title-page does not indicate) was printed in 1608,
4to. Ritson remarks that this celebrated romance is mentioned in Meres's
_Palladis Tamia_ (fol. 268), 1598. _Observ. on Warton's Hist. of Engl.
Poet._ p. 23; but I can produce a notice of it anterior to that date
from the Stationers' Books:

                            "20 Aprilis [1596]

  "Jo Danter          Entred for his copie vnder thande of   }
                      the Wardens, A booke Intituled the     }
                      famous Hystory of the Seven Champions  }
                      of Christiandom, St. George of         }  vi^d."
                      England, St. Dennys of Fraunce, St.    }
                      James of Spayne, St. Anthony of Italy, }
                      St. Andrewe of Scotland, St. Patrick   }
                      of Irland, and St. David of Wales,     }

                            "6 Sept. [1596]

  "Cuthbert Burby     Entred for his copie by assigment      }
                      from John Danter, Twoo                 }
                      bookes, viz. the first pte and second  }
                      pte of the vii Champions               } vii^d."
                      of Christiandom. Reservinge            }
                      the workmanship of the printinge       }
                      at all tymes to the said Jo            }
                      Danter....                             }

  (_Liber_ C. fol. 10 b., fol. 13 b.)

Johnson's _Nine Worthies of London: Explaining the honourable Exercise
of Armes, the Vertues of the Valiant, and the memorable Attempts of
magnanimous Minds, &c._ (a poem somewhat resembling the _Mirror for
Magistrates_,) is reprinted in _The Harl. Miscell._ viii. 437, ed. Park.
He was also the compiler, and probably in part the author, of _The Crown
Garland of Golden Roses_, &c. See Ritson's _Bibl. Poet._


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