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Title: Bartholomew Fair - A Comedy
Author: Jonson, Ben
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Bartholomew Fair - A Comedy" ***

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Archive, the University of California, and Christopher



Acted in the Year, 1614
By the Lady Elizabeth's Servants

And then dedicated to King James,
of most Blessed Memorie




JOHN LITTLEWIT, _a Proctor._
WINWIFE, _his rival, a Gentleman._
TOM QUARLOUS, _companion to WINWIFE, a Gamester._
BARTHOLOMEW COKES, _an Esquire of Harrow._
ADAM OVERDO, _a Justice of Peace._
LANTHORN LEATHERHEAD, _a Hobby-Horse Seller_ (_Toyman_).
NIGHTINGALE, _a Ballad-Singer._
MOONCALF, _Tapster to URSULA._
DAN. JORDAN KNOCKEM, _a Horse-Courser, and a Ranger of Turnbull._
VAL. CUTTING, _a Roarer, or Bully._
TROUBLE-ALL, _a Madman._
           } _Watchmen._
POCHER, _a Beadle._
           } _Door-keepers to the Puppet-Show._
NORTHERN, _a Clothier_ (_a Northern Man_).
PUPPY, _a Wrestler_ (_a Western Man_).

DAME PURECRAFT, _her Mother, and a Widow._
JOAN TRASH, _a Gingerbread-Woman._
URSULA, _a Pig-Woman._
ALICE, _Mistress o' the game._

Costard-Monger, Mousetrap-Man, Corn-Cutter, Watch, Porters,
Puppets, Passengers, Mob, Boys, _etc._



Your Majesty is welcome to a Fair;
Such place, such men, such language, and such ware
You must expect: with these, the zealous noise
Of your land's faction, scandalised at toys,
As babies, hobby-horses, puppet-plays,
And such-like rage, whereof the petulant ways
Yourself have known, and have been vext with long.
These for your sport, without particular wrong,
Or just complaint of any private man,
Who of himself, or shall think well, or can,
The maker doth present: and hopes, to-night
To give you for a fairing, true delight.



_Enter the Stage-keeper._

STAGE. Gentlemen, have a little patience, they are e'en upon coming,
instantly. He that should begin the play, master Littlewit, the
proctor, has a stitch new fallen in his black silk stocking; 'twill be
drawn up ere you can tell twenty: he plays one o' the Arches that
dwells about the hospital, and he has a very pretty part. But for the
whole play, will you have the truth on't?--I am looking, lest the poet
hear me, or his man, master Brome, behind the arras--it is like to be
a very conceited scurvy one, in plain English. When't comes to the
Fair once, you were e'en as good go to Virginia, for any thing there
is of Smithfield. He has not hit the humours, he does not know them;
he has not conversed with the Bartholomew birds, as they say; he has
ne'er a sword and buckler-man in his Fair; nor a little Davy, to take
toll o' the bawds there, as in my time; nor a Kindheart, if any body's
teeth should chance to ache in his play; nor a juggler with a
well-educated ape, to come over the chain for a king of England, and
back again for the prince, and sit still on his arse for the pope and
the king of Spain. None of these fine sights! Nor has he the
canvas-cut in the night, for a hobby-horse man to creep into his
she-neighbour, and take his leap there. Nothing! No: an some writer
that I know had had but the penning o' this matter, he would have made
you such a jig-a-jog in the booths, you should have thought an
earthquake had been in the Fair! But these master poets, they will
have their own absurd courses; they will be informed of nothing. He
has (sir reverence) kick'd me three or four times about the
tiring-house, I thank him, for but offering to put in with my
experience. I'll be judged by you, gentlemen, now, but for one conceit
of mine: would not a fine pomp upon the stage have done well, for a
property now? and a punk set under upon her head, with her stern
upward, and have been soused by my witty young masters o' the Inns of
Court? What think you of this for a show, now? he will not hear o'
this! I am an ass! I! and yet I kept the stage in master Tarleton's
time, I thank my stars. Ho! an that man had lived to have played in
Bartholomew Fair, you should have seen him have come in, and have been
cozen'd in the cloth-quarter, so finely! and Adams, the rogue, have
leaped and capered upon him, and have dealt his vermin about, as
though they had cost him nothing! and then a substantial watch to have
stolen in upon them, and taken them away, with mistaking words, as the
fashion is in the stage-practice.

_Enter the Bookholder with a Scrivener._

BOOK. How now! what rare discourse are you fallen upon, ha? have you
found any familiars here, that you are so free! what's the business?

STAGE. Nothing, but the understanding gentlemen o' the ground here
ask'd my judgment.

BOOK. Your judgment, rascal! for what? sweeping the stage, or
gathering up the broken apples for the bears within? Away, rogue, it's
come to a fine degree in these spectacles, when such a youth as you
pretend to a judgment. [_Exit Stage-keeper._]--And yet he may, in the
most of this matter, i'faith: for the author has writ it just to his
meridian, and the scale of the grounded judgments here, his
play-fellows in wit.--Gentlemen, [_comes forward_] not for want of a
prologue, but by way of a new one, I am sent out to you here, with a
scrivener, and certain articles drawn out in haste between our author
and you; which if you please to hear, and as they appear reasonable,
to approve of; the play will follow presently.--Read, scribe; give me
the counterpane.

SCRIV. _Articles of agreement, indented, between the spectators or
hearers, at the Hope on the Bankside in the county of Surry, on the
one party; and the author of _Bartholomew Fair,_ in the said place and
county, on the other party: the one and thirtieth day of _October,
1614,_ and in the twelfth year of the reign of our sovereign lord
_JAMES,_ by the grace of God, king of England, France, and Ireland,
defender of the faith; and of Scotland the seven and fortieth._

  Imprimis. _It is covenanted and agreed, by and between the parties
aforesaid, and the said spectators and hearers, as well the curious
and envious, as the favouring and judicious, as also the grounded
judgments and understandings, do for themselves severally covenant and
agree to remain in the places their money or friends have put them in,
with patience, for the space of two hours and an half, and somewhat
more. In which time the author promiseth to present them by us, with a
new sufficient play, called _Bartholomew Fair,_ merry, and as full of
noise, as sport: made to delight all, and to offend none; provided
they have either the wit or the honesty to think well of themselves._

  _It is further agreed, that every person here have his or their
free-will of censure, to like or dislike at their own charge, the
author having now departed with his right: it shall be lawful for any
man to judge his sixpen'worth, his twelvepen'worth, so to his
eighteen-pence, two shillings, half a crown, to the value of his
place; provided always his place get not above his wit. And if he pay
for half a dozen, he may censure for all them too, so that he will
undertake that they shall be silent. He shall put in for censures
here, as they do for lots at the lottery: marry, if he drop but
six-pence at the door, and will censure a crown's-worth, it is thought
there is no conscience or justice in that._

  _It is also agreed, that every man here exercise his own judgment,
and not censure by contagion, or upon trust, from another's voice or
face, that site by him, be he never so first in the commission of wit;
as also that he be fixed and settled in his censure that what he
approves or not approves to-day, he will do the same to-morrow; and if
to-morrow, the next day, and so the next week, if need be: and not to
be brought about by any that sits on the bench with him, though they
indite and arraign plays daily. He that will swear, _Jeronimo_ or
_Andronicus,_ are the best plays yet, shall, pass unexcepted at here,
as a man whose judgment shews it is constant, and hath stood still
these five and twenty or thirty years. Though it be an ignorance it is
a virtuous and staid ignorance; and next to truth, a confirmed error
does well; such a one the author knows where to find him._

  _It is further covenanted, concluded, and agreed, That how great
soever the expectation be, no person here is to expect more than he
knows, or better ware than a fair will afford: neither to look back to
the sword and buckler age of Smithfield, but content himself with the
present. Instead of a little Davy to take toll o' the bawds, the
author doth promise a strutting horse-courser, with a leer drunkard,
two or three to attend him, in as good equipage as you would wish. And
then for Kindheart the tooth-drawer, a fine oily pig-woman with her
tapster, to bid you welcome, and a consort of roarers for musick. A
wise justice of peace meditant, instead of a juggler with an ape. A
civil cutpurse searchant. A sweet singer of new ballads allurant: and
as fresh an hypocrite, as ever was broached, rampant. If there be
never a servant-monster in the fair, who can help it, he says, nor a
nest of antiques? he is loth to make nature afraid in his plays, like
those that beget tales, tempests, and such-like drolleries, to mix his
head with other men's heels; let the concupiscence of jigs and dances
reign as strong as it will amongst you: yet if the puppets will please
any body, they shall be intreated to come in._

  _In consideration of which, it is finally agreed, by the aforesaid
hearers and spectators, That they neither in themselves conceal, nor
suffer by them to be concealed, any state-decypherer, or politic
pick-lock of the scene so solemnly ridiculous, as to search out, who
was meant by the gingerbread-woman, who by the hobby-horse man, who by
the costard-monger, nay, who by their wares. Or that will pretend to
affirm on his own inspired ignorance, what Mirror of Magistrates is
meant by the justice, what great lady by the pig-woman, what concealed
statesman by the seller of mouse-traps, and so of the rest. But that
such person, or persons, so found, be left discovered to the mercy of
the author, as a forfeiture to the stage, and your laughter aforesaid.
As also such as shall so desperately, or ambitiously play the fool by
his place aforesaid, to challenge the author of scurrility, because
the language somewhere savours of Smithfield, the booth, and the
pigbroth, or of profaneness, because a madman cries, _God quit you,_
or _bless you!_ In witness whereof, as you have preposterously put to
your seals already, which is your money, you will now add the other
part of suffrage, your hands. The play shall presently begin. And
though the Fair be not kept in the same region that some here,
perhaps, would have it; yet think, that therein the author hath
observed a special decorum, the place being as dirty as Smithfield,
and as stinking every whit._

  _Howsoever, he prays you to believe, his ware is still the same,
else you will make him justly suspect that he that is so loth to look
on a baby or an hobby-horse here, would be glad to take up a commodity
of them, at any laughter or loss in another place._



SCENE I.--_A Room in LITTLEWIT'S House._

_Enter LITTLEWIT with a license in his hand._

LIT. A pretty conceit, and worth the finding! I have such luck to spin
out these fine things still, and, like a silk-worm, out of my self.
Here's master Bartholomew Cokes, of Harrow o' the Hill, in the county
of Middlesex, esquire, takes forth his license to marry mistress Grace
Wellborn, of the said place and county: and when does he take it
forth? to-day! the four and twentieth of August! Bartholomew-day!
Bartholomew upon Bartholomew! there's the device! who would have
marked such a leap-frog chance now! A very . . . less than ames-ace,
on two dice! Well, go thy ways, John Littlewit, proctor John
Littlewit: one of the pretty wits of Paul's, the Littlewit of London,
so thou art called, and something beside. When a quirk or a quiblin
does 'scape thee, and thou dost not watch and apprehend it, and bring
it afore the constable of conceit, (there now, I speak quib too,) let
them carry thee out o' the archdeacon's court into his kitchen, and
make a Jack of thee, instead of a John. There I am again la!--


Win, good-morrow, Win; ay, marry, Win, now you look finely indeed,
Win! this cap does convince! You'd not have worn it, Win, nor have had
it velvet, but a rough country beaver, with a copper band, like the
coney-skin woman of Budge-row; sweet Win, let me kiss it! And her fine
high shoes, like the Spanish lady! Good Win, go a little, I would fain
see thee pace, pretty Win; by this fine cap, I could never leave
kissing on't.

MRS. LIT. Come indeed la, you are such a fool still!

LIT. No, but half a one, Win, you are the t'other half: man and wife
make one fool, Win. Good! Is there the proctor, or doctor indeed, in
the diocese, that ever had the fortune to win him such a Win! There I
am again! I do feel conceits coming upon me, more than I am able to
turn tongue to. A pox o' these pretenders to wit! your Three Cranes,
Mitre and Mermaid men! not a corn of true salt, not a grain of right
mustard amongst them all. They may stand for places, or so, again the
next wit-fall, and pay two-pence in a quart more for their canary than
other men. But give me the man can start up a justice of wit out of
six shillings beer, and give the law to all the poets and poet-suckers
in town:--because they are the player's gossips! 'Slid! other men have
wives as fine as the players, and as well drest. Come hither, Win!

[_Kisses her._

_Enter WINWIFE._

WINW. Why, how now, master Littlewit! measuring of lips, or moulding
of kisses? which is it?

LIT. Troth, I am a little taken with my Win's dressing here: does it
not fine, master Winwife? How do you apprehend, sir? she would not
have worn this habit. I challenge all Cheapside to shew such another:
Moorfields, Pimlico-path, or the Exchange, in a summer evening, with a
lace to boot, as this has. Dear Win, let master Winwife kiss you. He
comes a wooing to our mother, Win, and may be our father perhaps, Win.
There's no harm in him, Win.

WINW. None in the earth, master Littlewit.

[_Kisses her._

LIT. I envy no man my delicates, sir.

WINW. Alas, you have the garden where they grow still! A wife here
with a strawberry breath, cherry lips, apricot cheeks, and a soft
velvet head, like a melicotton.

LIT. Good, i'faith! now dulness upon me, that I had not that before
him, that I should not light on't as well as he! velvet head!

WINW. But my taste, master Littlewit, tends to fruit of a later kind;
the sober matron, your wife's mother.

LIT. Ay, we know you are a suitor, sir; Win and I both wish you well:
By this license here, would you had her, that your two names were as
fast in it as here are a couple! Win would fain have a fine young
father-i'-law, with a feather; that her mother might hood it and chain
it with mistress Overdo. But you do not take the right course, master

WINW. No, master Littlewit, why?

LIT. You are not mad enough.

WINW. How! is madness a right course?

LIT. I say nothing, but I wink upon Win. You have a friend, one master
Quarlous, comes here sometimes.

WINW. Why, he makes no love to her, does he?

LIT. Not a tokenworth that ever I saw, I assure you: but--

WINW. What?

LIT. He is the more mad-cap of the two. You do not apprehend me.

MRS. LIT. You have a hot coal in your mouth, now, you cannot hold.

LIT. Let me out with it, dear Win.

MRS. LIT. I'll tell him myself.

LIT. Do, and take all the thanks, and much good do thy pretty heart,

MRS. LIT. Sir, my mother has had her nativity-water cast lately by the
cunning-men in Cow-lane, and they have told her her fortune, and do
ensure her, she shall never have happy hour, unless she marry within
this sen'night; and when it is, it must be a madman, they say.

LIT. Ay, but it must be a gentleman madman.

MRS. LIT. Yes, so the t'other man of Moorfields says.

WINW. But does she believe them?

LIT. Yes, and has been at Bedlam twice since every day, to inquire if
any gentleman be there, or to come there mad.

WINW. Why, this is a confederacy, a mere piece of practice upon her by
these impostors.

LIT. I tell her so; or else, say I, that they mean some young madcap
gentleman; for the devil can equivocate as well as a shop keeper: and
therefore would I advise you to be a little madder than master
Quarlous hereafter.

WINW. Where is she, stirring yet?

LIT. Stirring! yes, and studying an old elder come from Banbury, a
suitor that puts in here at meal tide, to praise the painful brethren,
or pray that the sweet singers may be restored; says a grace as long
as his breath lasts him! Some time the spirit is so strong with him,
it gets quite out of him, and then my mother, or Win, are fain to
fetch it again with malmsey or aqua coelestis.

MRS. LIT. Yes, indeed, we have such a tedious life with him for his
diet, and his clothes too! he breaks his buttons, and cracks seams at
every saying he sobs out.

LIT. He cannot abide my vocation, he says.

MRS. LIT. No; he told my mother, a proctor was a claw of the beast,
and that she had little less than committed abomination in marrying me
so as she has done.

LIT. Every line, he says, that a proctor writes, when it comes to be
read in the bishop's court, is a long black hair, kemb'd out of the
tail of Antichrist.

WINW. When came this proselyte?

LIT. Some three days since.


QUAR. O sir, have you ta'en soil here? It's well a man may reach you
after three hours' running yet! What an unmerciful companion art thou,
to quit thy lodging at such ungentlemanly hours! none but a scattered
covey of fidlers, or one of these rag-rakers in dunghills, or some
marrow-bone man at most, would have been up when thou wert gone
abroad, by all description. I pray thee what ailest thou, thou canst
not sleep? hast thou thorns in thy eye-lids, or thistles in thy bed?

WINW. I cannot tell: it seems you had neither in your feet, that took
this pain to find me.

QUAR. No, an I had, all the lime hounds o' the city should have drawn
after you by the scent rather. Master John Littlewit! God save you,
sir. 'Twas a hot night with some of us, last night, John: shall we
pluck a hair of the same wolf to-day, proctor John?

LIT. Do you remember, master Quarlous, what we discoursed on last

QUAR. Not I, John, nothing that I either discourse or do; at those
times I forfeit all to forgetfulness.

LIT. No! not concerning Win? look you, there she is, and drest, as I
told you she should be: hark you, sir, [_whispers him._] had you

QUAR. By this head I'll beware how I keep you company, John, when I
[am] drunk, an you have this dangerous memory: that's certain.

LIT. Why, sir?

QUAR. Why! we were all a little stained last night, sprinkled with a
cup or two, and I agreed with proctor John here, to come and do
somewhat with Win (I know not what 'twas) to-day; and he puts me in
mind on't now; he says he was coming to fetch me. Before truth, if you
have that fearful quality, John, to remember when you are sober, John,
what you promise drunk, John; I shall take heed of you, John. For this
once I am content to wink at you. Where's your wife? come hither, Win.

[_Kisses her._

MRS. LIT. Why, John! do you see this, John? look you! help me, John.

LIT. O Win, fie, what do you mean, Win? be womanly, Win; make an
outcry to your mother, Win! master Quarlous is an honest gentleman,
and our worshipful good friend, Win; and he is master Winwife's friend
too: and master Winwife comes a suitor to your mother, Win; as I told
you before, Win, and may perhaps be our father, Win: they'll do you no
harm, Win; they are both our worshipful good friends. Master Quarlous!
you must know master Quarlous, Win; you must not quarrel with master
Quarlous, Win.

QUAR. No, we'll kiss again, and fall in.

[_Kisses her again._

LIT. Yes, do, good Win.

MRS. LIT. In faith you are a fool, John.

LIT. A fool-John, she calls me; do you mark that, gentlemen? pretty
Littlewit of velvet? a fool-John.

QUAR. She may call you an apple-John, if you use this. [_Aside._

[_Kisses her again._

WINW. Pray thee forbear, for my respect, somewhat.

QUAR. Hoy-day! how respective you are become o' the sudden? I fear
this family will turn you reformed too; pray you come about again.
Because she is in possibility to be your daughter-in-law, and may ask
you blessing hereafter, when she courts it to Totenham to eat cream!
Well, I will forbear, sir; but i'faith, would thou wouldst leave thy
exercise of widow-hunting once; this drawing after an old reverend
smock by the splay-foot! There cannot be an ancient tripe or trillibub
in the town, but thou art straight nosing it, and 'tis a fine
occupation thou'lt confine thyself to, when thou hast got one;
scrubbing a piece of buff, as if thou hadst the perpetuity of
Pannier-ally to stink in; or perhaps worse, currying a carcass that
thou hast bound thyself to alive. I'll be sworn, some of them that
thou art, or hast been suitor to, are so old, as no chaste or married
pleasure can ever become them; the honest instrument of procreation
has forty years since left to belong to them; thou must visit them as
thou wouldst do a tomb, with a torch or three handfuls of link,
flaming hot, and so thou may'st hap to make them feel thee and after
come to inherit according to thy inches. A sweet course for a man to
waste the brand of life for, to be still raking himself a fortune in
an old woman's embers! We shall have thee, after thou hast been but a
month married to one of them, look like the quartan ague and the black
jaundice met in a face, and walk as if thou hadst borrow'd legs of a
spinner, and voice of a cricket. I would endure to hear fifteen
sermons a week for her, and such coarse and loud ones, as some of them
must be! I would e'en desire of fate, I might dwell in a drum, and
take in my sustenance with an old broken tobacco-pipe and a straw.
Dost thou ever think to bring thine ears or stomach to the patience of
a dry grace as long as thy table-cloth; and droned out by thy son here
(that might be thy father) till all the meat on thy board has forgot
it was that day in the kitchen? or to brook the noise made in a
question of predestination, by the good labourers and painful eaters
assembled together, put to them by the matron your spouse; who
moderates with a cup of wine, ever and anon, and a sentence out of
Knox between? Or the perpetual spitting before and after a sober-drawn
exhortation of six hours, whose better part was the hum-ha-hum? or to
hear prayers, groaned out over thy iron chests, as if they were charms
to break them? And all this for the hope of two apostle-spoons, to
suffer! and a cup to eat a caudle in! for that will be thy legacy.
She'll have convey'd her state safe enough from thee, an she be a
right widow.

WINW. Alas, I am quite off that scent now.

QUAR. How so?

WINW. Put off by a brother of Banbury, one that, they say, is come
here, and governs all already.

QUAR. What do you call him? I knew divers of those Banburians when I
was in Oxford.

WINW. Master Littlewit can tell us.

LIT. Sir!--Good Win go in, and if master Bartholomew Cokes, his man,
come for the license, (the little old fellow,) let him speak with me.
[_Exit Mrs. Littlewit._]--What say you, gentlemen?

WINW. What call you the reverend elder you told me of, your Banbury

LIT. Rabbi Busy, sir; he is more than an elder, he is a prophet, sir.

QUAR. O, I know him! a baker, is he not?

LIT. He was a baker, sir, but he does dream now, and see visions; he
has given over his trade.

QUAR. I remember that too; out of a scruple he took, that, in spiced
conscience, those cakes he made, were served to bridals, may-poles,
morrices, and such profane feasts and meetings. His christian-name is

LIT. Yes, sir; Zeal-of-the-land Busy.

WINW. How! what a name's there!

LIT. O they have all such names, sir; he was witness for Win
here,--they will not be call'd godfathers--and named her
Win-the-fight: you thought her name had been Winnifred, did you not?

WINW. I did indeed.

LIT. He would have thought himself a stark reprobate, if it had.

QUAR. Ay, for there was a blue-starch woman of the name at the same
time. A notable hypocritical vermin it is; I know him. One that stands
upon his face, more than his faith, at all times: ever in seditious
motion, and reproving for vainglory; of a most lunatic conscience and
spleen, and affects the violence of singularity in all he does: he has
undone a grocer here, in Newgate-market, that broke with him, trusted
him with currants, as arrant a zeal as he, that's by the way:--By his
profession he will ever be in the state of innocence though, and
childhood; derides all antiquity, defies any other learning than
inspiration; and what discretion soever years should afford him, it is
all prevented in his original ignorance: have not to do with him, for
he is a fellow of a most arrogant and invincible dulness, I assure
you.--Who is this?

_Re-enter MRS. LITTLEWIT with WASPE._

WASPE. By your leave, gentlemen, with all my heart to you; and God
give you good morrow!--master Littlewit, my business is to you: is
this license ready?

LIT. Here I have it for you in my hand, master Humphrey.

WASPE. That's well: nay, never open or read it to me, it's labour in
vain, you know. I am no clerk, I scorn to be saved by my book,
i'faith, I'll hang first; fold it up on your word, and give it me.
What must you have for it?

LIT. We'll talk of that anon, master Humphrey.

WASPE. Now, or not at all, good master Proctor; I am for no anons, I
assure you.

LIT. Sweet Win, bid Solomon send me the little black-box within in my

WASPE. Ay, quickly, good mistress, I pray you; for I have both eggs on
the spit, and iron in the fire. [_Exit Mrs. Littlewit._]--Say what you
must have, good master Littlewit.

LIT. Why, you know the price, master Numps.

WASPE. I know! I know nothing, I: what tell you me of knowing? Now I
am in haste, sir, I do not know, and I will not know, and I scorn to
know, and yet, now I think on't, I will, and do know as well as
another; you must have a mark for your thing here, and eight-pence for
the box; I could have saved two-pence in that, an I had brought it
myself; but here's fourteen shillings for you. Good Lord, how long
your little wife stays! pray God, Solomon, your clerk, be not looking
in the wrong box, master proctor.

LIT. Good i'faith! no, I warrant you Solomon is wiser than so, sir.

WASPE. Fie, fie, fie, by your leave, master Littlewit, this is scurvy,
idle, foolish, and abominable, with all my heart; I do not like it.

[_Walks aside._

WINW. Do you hear! Jack Littlewit, what business does thy pretty head
think this fellow may have, that he keeps such a coil with?

QUAR. More than buying of gingerbread in the cloister here, for that
we allow him, or a gilt pouch in the fair?

LIT. Master Quarlous, do not mistake him; he is his master's
both-hands, I assure you.

QUAR. What! to pull on his boots a mornings, or his stockings, does

LIT. Sir, if you have a mind to mock him, mock him softly, and look
t'other way: for if he apprehend you flout him once, he will fly at
you presently. A terrible testy old fellow, and his name is Waspe too.

QUAR. Pretty insect! make much on him.

WASPE. A plague o' this box, and the pox too, and on him that made it,
and her that went for't, and all that should have sought it, sent it,
or brought it! do you see, sir.

LIT. Nay, good master Waspe.

WASPE. Good master Hornet, turd in your teeth, hold you your tongue:
do not I know you? your father was a 'pothecary, and sold clysters,
more than he gave, I wusse: and turd in your little wife's teeth
too--here she comes--

_Re-enter MRS. LITTLEWIT, with the box._

'twill make her spit, as fine as she is, for all her velvet custard on
her head, sir.

LIT. O, be civil, master Numps.

WASPE. Why, say I have a humour not to be civil; how then? who shall
compel me, you?

LIT. Here is the box now.

WASPE. Why, a pox o' your box, once again! let your little wife stale
in it, an she will. Sir, I would have you to understand, and these
gentlemen too, if they please--

WINW. With all our hearts, sir.

WASPE. That I have a charge, gentlemen.

LIT. They do apprehend, sir.

WASPE. Pardon me, sir, neither they nor you can apprehend me yet. You
are an ass.--I have a young master, he is now upon his making and
marring; the whole care of his well-doing is now mine. His foolish
schoolmasters have done nothing but run up and down the county with
him to beg puddings and cake-bread of his tenants, and almost spoil'd
him; he has learn'd nothing but to sing catches, and repeat _Rattle
bladder, rattle!_ and _O Madge!_ I dare not let him walk alone, for
fear of learning of vile tunes, which he will sing at supper, and in
the sermon-times! If he meet but a carman in the street, and I find
him not talk to keep him off on him, he will whistle him and all his
tunes over at night in his sleep! He has a head full of bees! I am
fain now, for this little time I am absent, to leave him in charge
with a gentlewoman: 'tis true she is a justice of peace his wife, and
a gentlewoman of the hood, and his natural sister; but what may happen
under a woman's government, there's the doubt. Gentlemen, you do not
know him; he is another manner of piece than you think for: but
nineteen years old, and yet he is taller than either of you by the
head, God bless him!

QUAR. Well, methinks this is a fine fellow.

WINW. He has made his master a finer by this description, I should

QUAR. 'Faith, much about one, it is cross and pile, whether for a new

WASPE. I'll tell you, gentlemen--

LIT. Will't please you drink, master Waspe?

WASPE. Why, I have not talk'd so long to be dry, sir. You see no dust
or cobwebs come out o' my mouth, do you? you'd have me gone, would

LIT. No, but you were in haste e'en now, master Numps.

WASPE. What an I were! so I am still, and yet I will stay too; meddle
you with your match, your Win there, she has as little wit as her
husband, it seems: I have others to talk to.

LIT. She's my match indeed, and as _little wit_ as I, good!

WASPE. We have been but a day and a half in town, gentlemen, 'tis
true; and yesterday in the afternoon we walked London to shew the city
to the gentlewoman he shall marry, mistress Grace; but afore I will
endure such another half day with him, I'll be drawn with a good
gib-cat, through the great pond at home, as his uncle Hodge was. Why,
we could not meet that heathen thing all the day, but staid him; he
would name you all the signs over, as he went, aloud: and where he
spied a parrot or a monkey, there he was pitched, with all the little
long coats about him, male and female; no getting him away! I thought
he would have run mad o' the black boy in Bucklersbury, that takes the
scurvy, roguy tobacco there.

LIT. You say true, master Numps; there's such a one indeed.

WASPE. It's no matter whether there be or no, what's that to you?

QUAR. He will not allow of John's reading at any hand.


COKES. O Numps! are you here, Numps? look where I am, Numps, and
mistress Grace too! Nay, do not look angerly, Numps: my sister is here
and all, I do not come without her.

WASPE. What the mischief do you come with her; or she with you?

COKES. We came all to seek you, Numps.

WASPE. To seek me! why, did you all think I was lost, or run away with
your fourteen shillings' worth of small ware here? or that I had
changed it in the fair for hobby-horses? S'precious--to seek me!

MRS. OVER. Nay, good master Numps, do you shew discretion, though he
be exorbitant, as master Overdo says, and it be but for conservation
of the peace.

WASPE. Marry gip, goody She-justice, mistress Frenchhood! turd in your
teeth, and turd in your Frenchhood's teeth too, to do you service, do
you see! Must you quote your Adam to me! you think you are madam
Regent still, mistress Overdo, when I am in place; no such matter. I
assure you, your reign is out, when I am in, dame.

MRS. OVER. I am content to be in abeyance, sir, and be governed by
you; so should he too, if he did well; but 'twill be expected you
should also govern your passions.

WASPE. Will it so, forsooth! good Lord, how sharp you are, with being
at Bedlam yesterday! Whetstone has set an edge upon you, has he?

MRS. OVER. Nay, if you know not what belongs to your dignity, I do yet
to mine.

WASPE. Very well then.

COKES. Is this the license, Numps? for love's sake let me see't; I
never saw a license.

WASPE. Did you not so? why, you shall not see't then.

COKES. An you love me, good Numps.

WASPE. Sir, I love you, and yet I do not love you in these fooleries:
set your heart at rest, there's nothing in it but hard words;--and
what would you see it for?

COKES. I would see the length and the breadth on't, that's all; and I
will see it now, so I will.

WASPE. You shall not see it here.

COKES. Then I'll see it at home, and I'll look upon the case here.

WASPE. Why, do so; a man must give way to him a little in trifles,
gentlemen. These are errors, diseases of youth; which he will mend
when he comes to judgment and knowledge of matters. I pray you
conceive so, and I thank you: and I pray you pardon him, and I thank
you again.

QUAR. Well, this dry nurse, I say still, is a delicate man.

WINW. And I am, for the cosset his charge: did you ever see a fellow's
face more accuse him for an ass?

QUAR. Accuse him! it confesses him one without accusing. What pity
'tis yonder wench should marry such a Cokes!

WINW. 'Tis true.

QUAR. She seems to be discreet, and as sober as she is handsome.

WINW. Ay, and if you mark her, what a restrained scorn she casts upon
all his behaviour and speeches!

COKES. Well, Numps, I am now for another piece of business more, the
Fair, Numps, and then--

WASPE. Bless me! deliver me! help, hold me! the Fair!

COKES. Nay, never fidge up and down, Numps, and vex itself. I am
resolute Bartholomew in this; I'll make no suit on't to you; 'twas all
the end of my journey indeed, to shew mistress Grace my Fair. I call
it my Fair, because of Bartholomew: you know my name is Bartholomew,
and Bartholomew Fair.

LIT. That was mine afore, gentlemen; this morning. I had that,
i'faith, upon his license, believe me, there he comes after me.

QUAR. Come, John, this ambitious wit of yours, I am afraid, will do
you no good in the end.

LIT. No! why, sir?

QUAR. You grow so insolent with it, and over-doing, John, that if you
look not to it, and tie it up, it will bring you to some obscure place
in time, and there 'twill leave you.

WINW. Do not trust it too much, John, be more sparing, and use it but
now and then; a wit is a dangerous thing in this age; do not over-buy

LIT. Think you so, gentlemen? I'll take heed on't hereafter.

MRS. LIT. Yes, do, John.

COKES. A pretty little soul, this same mistress Littlewit, would I
might marry her!

GRACE. So would I; or any body else, so I might 'scape you. [_Aside._

COKES. Numps, I will see it, Numps, 'tis decreed: never be melancholy
for the matter.

WASPE. Why, see it, sir, see it, do, see it: who hinders you? why do
you not go see it? 'slid see it.

COKES. The Fair, Numps, the Fair.

WASPE. Would the Fair, and all the drums and rattles in it, were in
your belly for me! they are already in your brain. He that had the
means to travel your head now, should meet finer sights than any are
in the Fair, and make a finer voyage on't; to see it all hung with
cockle shells, pebbles, fine wheat straws, and here and there a
chicken's feather, and a cobweb.

QUAR. Good faith, he looks, methinks, an you mark him, like one that
were made to catch flies, with his sir Cranion-legs.

WINW. And his Numps, to flap them away.

WASPE. God be wi' you, sir, there's your bee in a box, and much good
do't you.

[_Gives Cokes the box._

COKES. Why, your friend, and Bartholomew; an you be so contumacious.

QUAR. What mean you, Numps?

[_Takes Waspe aside as he is going out._

WASPE. I'll not be guilty, I, gentlemen.

MRS. OVER. You will not let him go, brother, and lose him?

COKES. Who can hold that will away? I had rather lose him than the
Fair, I wusse.

WASPE. You do not know the inconvenience, gentlemen, you persuade to,
nor what trouble I have with him in these humours. If he go to the
Fair, he will buy of every thing to a baby there; and household stuff
for that too. If a leg or an arm on him did not grow on, he would lose
it in the press. Pray heaven I bring him off with one stone! And then
he is such a ravener after fruit!--you will not believe what a coil I
had t'other day to compound a business between a Cather'nepear woman,
and him, about snatching: 'tis intolerable, gentlemen.

WINW. O, but you must not leave him now to these hazards, Numps.

WASPE. Nay, he knows too well I will not leave him, and that makes him
presume: Well, sir, will you go now? if you have such an itch in your
feet, to foot it to the Fair, why do you stop, am I [o'] your
tarriers? go, will you go, sir? why do you not go?

COKES. O Numps, have I brought you about? come, mistress Grace, and
sister, I am resolute Bat, i'faith, still.

GRACE. Truly, I have no such fancy to the Fair, nor ambition to see
it: there's none goes thither of any quality or fashion.

COKES. O Lord, sir! you shall pardon me, mistress Grace, we are enow
of ourselves to make it a fashion; and for qualities, let Numps alone,
he'll find qualities.

QUAR. What a rogue in apprehension is this, to understand her language
no better!

WINW. Ay, and offer to marry her! Well, I will leave the chase of my
widow for to-day, and directly to the Fair. These flies cannot, this
hot season, but engender us excellent creeping sport.

QUAR. A man that has but a spoonful of brain would think
so.--Farewell, John.

[_Exeunt Quarlous and Winwife._

LIT. Win, you see 'tis in fashion to go to the Fair, Win; we must to
the Fair too, you and I, Win. I have an affair in the Fair, Win, a
puppet-play of mine own making, say nothing, that I writ for the
motion-man, which you must see, Win.

MRS. LIT. I would I might, John; but my mother will never consent to
such a profane motion, she will call it.

LIT. Tut, we'll have a device, a dainty one: Now, Wit, help at a
pinch, good Wit, come, come, good Wit, an it be thy will! I have it,
Win, I have it i'faith, and 'tis a fine one. Win, long to eat of a
pig, sweet Win, in the Fair, do you see, in the heart of the Fair, not
at Pye-corner. Your mother will do any thing, Win, to satisfy your
longing, you know; pray thee long presently; and be sick o' the
sudden, good Win. I'll go in and tell her; cut thy lace in the mean
time, and play the hypocrite, sweet Win.

MRS. LIT. No, I'll not make me unready for it: I can be hypocrite
enough, though I were never so strait-laced.

LIT. You say true, you have been bred in the family, and brought up
to't. Our mother is a most elect hypocrite, and has maintained us all
this seven year with it, like gentlefolks.

MRS. LIT. Ay, let her alone, John, she is not a wise wilful widow for
nothing; nor a sanctified sister for a song. And let me alone too, I
have somewhat of the mother in me, you shall see: fetch her, fetch
her--[_Exit Littlewit._] Ah! ah!

[_Seems to swoon._


PURE. Now, the blaze of the beauteous discipline, fright away this
evil from our house! how now, Win-the-fight, child! how do you? sweet
child, speak to me.

MRS. LIT. Yes, forsooth.

PURE. Look up, sweet Win-the-fight, and suffer not the enemy to enter
you at this door, remember that your education has been with the
purest: What polluted one was it, that named first the unclean beast,
pig, to you, child?

MRS. LIT. Uh, uh!

LIT. Not I, on my sincerity, mother! she longed above three hours ere
she would let me know it.--Who was it, Win?

MRS. LIT. A profane black thing with a beard, John.

PURE. O, resist it, Win-the-fight, it is the tempter, the wicked
tempter, you may know it by the fleshly motion of pig; be strong
against it, and its foul temptations, in these assaults, whereby it
broacheth flesh and blood, as it were on the weaker side; and pray
against its carnal provocations; good child, sweet child, pray.

LIT. Good mother, I pray you, that she may eat some pig, and her belly
full too; and do not you cast away your own child, and perhaps one of
mine, with your tale of the tempter. How do you do, Win, are you not

MRS. LIT. Yes, a great deal, John, uh, uh!

PURE. What shall we do? Call our zealous brother Busy hither, for his
faithful fortification in this charge of the adversary. [_Exit
Littlewit._] Child, my dear child, you shall eat pig; be comforted, my
sweet child.

MRS. LIT. Ay, but in the Fair, mother.

PURE. I mean in the Fair, if it can be any way made or found lawful.--

_Re-enter LITTLEWIT._

Where is our brother Busy? will he not come? Look up, child.

LIT. Presently, mother, as soon as he has cleansed his beard. I found
him fast by the teeth in the cold turkey-pie in the cupboard, with a
great white loaf on his left hand, and a glass of malmsey on his

PURE. Slander not the brethren, wicked one.

LIT. Here he is now, purified, mother.


PURE. O brother Busy! your help here, to edify and raise us up in a
scruple: my daughter Win-the-fight is visited with a natural disease
of women, called a longing to eat pig.

LIT. Ay, sir, a Bartholomew pig; and in the Fair.

PURE. And I would be satisfied from you, religiously-wise, whether a
widow of the sanctified assembly, or a widow's daughter, may commit
the act without offence to the weaker sisters.

BUSY. Verily, for the disease of longing, it is a disease, a carnal
disease, or appetite, incident to women; and as it is carnal and
incident, it is natural, very natural: now pig, it is a meat, and a
meat that is nourishing and may be longed for, and so consequently
eaten; it may be eaten; very exceeding well eaten; but in the Fair,
and as a Bartholomew pig, it cannot be eaten; for the very calling it
a Bartholomew pig, and to eat it so, is a spice of idolatry, and you
make the Fair no better than one of the high-places. This, I take it,
is the state of the question: a high-place.

LIT. Ay, but in state of necessity, place should give place, master
Busy. I have a conceit left yet.

PURE. Good brother Zeal-of-the-land, think to make it as lawful as you

LIT. Yes, sir, and as soon as you can; for it must be, sir: you see
the danger my little wife is in, sir.

PURE. Truly, I do love my child dearly, and I would not have her
miscarry, or hazard her firstfruits, if it might be otherwise.

BUSY. Surely, it may be otherwise, but it is subject to construction,
subject, and hath a face of offence with the weak, a great face, a
foul face; but that face may have a veil put over it, and be shadowed
as it were; it may be eaten, and in the Fair, I take it, in a booth,
the tents of the wicked: the place is not much, not very much, we may
be religious in the midst of the profane, so it be eaten with a
reformed mouth, with sobriety and humbleness; not gorged in with
gluttony or greediness, there's the fear: for, should she go there, as
taking pride in the place, or delight in the unclean dressing, to feed
the vanity of the eye, or lust of the palate, it were not well, it
were not fit, it were abominable, and not good.

LIT. Nay, I knew that afore, and told her on't; but courage, Win,
we'll be humble enough, we'll seek out the homeliest booth in the
Fair, that's certain; rather than fail, we'll eat it on the ground.

PURE. Ay, and I'll go with you myself, Win-the-fight, and my brother
Zeal-of-the-land shall go with us too, for our better consolation.

MRS. LIT. Uh, uh!

LIT. Ay, and Solomon too, Win, the more the merrier. Win, we'll leave
Rabbi Busy in a booth. [_Aside to Mrs. Littlewit._]--Solomon! my

_Enter SOLOMON with the cloak._

SOL. Here, sir.

BUSY. In the way of comfort to the weak, I will go and eat. I will eat
exceedingly, and prophesy; there may be a good use made of it too, now
I think on't: by the public eating of swine's flesh, to profess our
hate and loathing of Judaism, whereof the brethren stand tax'd. I will
therefore eat, yea, I will eat exceedingly.

LIT. Good, i'faith, I will eat heartily too, because I will be no Jew,
I could never away with that stiff-necked generation: and truly, I
hope my little one will be like me, that cries for pig so in the
mother's belly.

BUSY. Very likely, exceeding likely, very exceeding likely.



SCENE I--_The Fair._

A number of Booths, Stalls, etc., set out.

_LANTHORN LEATHERHEAD, JOAN TRASH, and others, sitting by their

_Enter JUSTICE OVERDO, at a distance, in disguise._

OVER. Well, in justice name, and the king's, and for the commonwealth!
defy all the world, Adam Overdo, for a disguise, and all story; for
thou hast fitted thyself, I swear. Fain would I meet the Linceus now,
that eagle's eye, that piercing Epidaurian serpent (as my Quintus
Horace calls him) that could discover a justice of peace (and lately
of the Quorum) under this covering. They may have seen many a fool in
the habit of a justice; but never till now, a justice in the habit of
a fool. Thus must we do though, that wake for the public good; and
thus hath the wise magistrate done in all ages. There is a doing of
right out of wrong, if the way be found. Never shall I enough commend
a worthy worshipful man, sometime a capital member of this city, for
his high wisdom in this point, who would take you now the habit of a
porter, now of a carman, now of the dog-killer, in this month of
August; and in the winter, of a seller of tinder-boxes. And what would
he do in all these shapes? marry, go you into every alehouse, and down
into every cellar; measure the length of puddings; take the gage of
black pots and cans, ay, and custards, with a stick; and their
circumference with a thread; weigh the loaves of bread on his middle
finger; then would he send for them home; give the puddings to the
poor, the bread to the hungry, the custards to his children; break the
pots, and burn the cans himself: he would not trust his corrupt
officers, he would do it himself. Would all men in authority would
follow this worthy precedent! for alas, as we are public persons, what
do we know? nay, what can we know? we hear with other men's ears, we
see with other men's eyes. A foolish constable or a sleepy watchman,
is all our information; he slanders a gentleman by the virtue of his
place, as he calls it, and we, by the vice of ours, must believe him.
As, a while agone, they made me, yea me, to mistake an honest zealous
pursuivant for a seminary; and a proper young bachelor of musick, for
a bawd. This we are subject to that live in high place; all our
intelligence is idle, and most of our intelligencers knaves; and, by
your leave, ourselves thought little better, if not arrant fools, for
believing them. I, Adam Overdo, am resolved therefore to spare
spy-money hereafter, and make mine own discoveries. Many are the
yearly enormities of this Fair, in whose courts of Pie-poudres I have
had the honour, during the three days, sometimes to sit as judge. But
this is the special day for detection of those foresaid enormities.
Here is my black book for the purpose; this the cloud that hides me;
under this covert I shall see and not be seen. On, Junius Brutus. And
as I began, so I'll end; in justice name, and the king's, and for the

[_Advances to the booths, and stands aside._

LEATH. The Fair's pestilence dead methinks; people come not abroad
to-day, whatever the matter is. Do you hear, sister Trash, lady of the
basket? sit farther with your gingerbread progeny there, and hinder
not the prospect of my shop, or I'll have it proclaimed in the Fair,
what stuff they are made on.

TRASH. Why, what stuff are they made on, brother Leatherhead? nothing
but what's wholesome, I assure you.

LEATH. Yes, stale bread, rotten eggs, musty ginger, and dead honey,
you know.

OVER. Ay! have I met with enormity so soon? [_Aside._

LEATH. I shall mar your market, old Joan.

TRASH. Mar my market, thou too-proud pedlar! do thy worst, I defy
thee, I, and thy stable of hobby-horses. I pay for my ground, as well
as thou dost: an thou wrong'st me, for all thou art parcel-poet, and
an inginer, I'll find a friend shall right me, and make a ballad of
thee, and thy cattle all over. Are you puft up with the pride of your
wares? your arsedine?

LEATH. Go to, old Joan, I'll talk with you anon; and take you down
too, afore justice Overdo: he is the man must charm you, I'll have you
in the Pie-poudres.

TRASH. Charm me! I'll meet thee face to face, afore his worship, when
thou darest: and though I be a little crooked o' my body, I shall be
found as upright in my dealing as any woman in Smithfield, I; charm

OVER. I am glad to hear my name is their terror yet, this is doing of
justice. [_Aside._]

[_A number of people pass over the stage._

LEATH. What do you lack? what is't you buy? what do you lack? rattles,
drums, halberts, horses, babies o' the best, fiddles of the finest?


COST. Buy any pears, pears, fine, very fine pears!

TRASH. Buy any gingerbread, gilt gingerbread!

NIGHT. Hey, [_Sings._

  _Now the Fair's a filling!
  O, for a tune to startle
  The birds o' the booths here billing,
  Yearly with old saint Bartle!
  The drunkards they are wading,
  The punks and chapmen trading;_

Buy any ballads, new ballads?

_Enter URSULA, from her Booth._

URS. Fie upon't: who would wear out their youth and prime thus, in
roasting of pigs, that had any cooler vocation? hell's a kind of cold
cellar to't, a very fine vault, o' my conscience!--What, Mooncalf!

MOON. [_within._] Here, mistress.

NIGHT. How now, Ursula? in a heat, in a heat?

URS. My chair, you false faucet you; and my morning's draught,
quickly, a bottle of ale, to quench me, rascal. I am all fire and fat,
Nightingale, I shall e'en melt away to the first woman, a rib again, I
am afraid. I do water the ground in knots, as I go, like a great
garden pot; you may follow me by the SS. I make.

NIGHT. Alas, good Urse! was Zekiel here this morning?

URS. Zekiel? what Zekiel?

NIGHT. Zekiel Edgworth, the civil cutpurse, you know him well enough;
he that talks bawdy to you still: I call him my secretary.

URS. He promised to be here this morning, I remember.

NIGHT. When he comes, bid him stay: I'll be back again presently.

URS. Best take your morning dew in your belly, Nightingale.--

_Enter MOONCALF, with the Chair._

Come, sir, set it here, did not I bid you should get a chair let out
o' the sides for me, that my hips might play? you'll never think of
any thing, till your dame be rump-gall'd; 'tis well, changeling:
because it can take in your grasshopper's thighs, you care for no
more. Now, you look as you had been in the corner of the booth,
fleaing your breech with a candle's end, and set fire o' the Fair.
Fill, Stote, fill.

OVER. This pig-woman do I know, and I will put her in, for my second
enormity; she hath been before me, punk, pinnace, and bawd, any time
these two and twenty years upon record in the Pie-poudres. [_Aside._

URS. Fill again, you unlucky vermin!

MOON. 'Pray you be not angry, mistress, I'll have it widen'd anon.

URS. No, no, I shall e'en dwindle away to't, ere the Fair be done, you
think, now you have heated me: a poor vex'd thing I am, I feel myself
dropping already as fast as I can; two stone o' suet a day is my
proportion. I can but hold life and soul together, with this, (here's
to you, Nightingale,) and a whiff of tobacco at most. Where's my pipe
now? not fill'd! thou arrant incubee.

NIGHT. Nay, Ursula, thou'lt gall between the tongue and the teeth,
with fretting, now.

URS. How can I hope that ever he'll discharge his place of trust,
tapster, a man of reckoning under me, that remembers nothing I say to
him? [_Exit Nightingale._] but look to't, sirrah, you were best.
Three-pence a pipe-full, I will have made, of all my whole half-pound
of tobacco, and a quarter of pound of colt's-foot mixt with it too, to
itch it out. I that have dealt so long in the fire, will not be to
seek in smoke, now. Then six and twenty shillings a barrel I will
advance on my beer, and fifty shillings a hundred on my bottle-ale; I
have told you the ways how to raise it. Froth your cans well in the
filling, at length, rogue, and jog your bottles o' the buttock,
sirrah, then skink out the first glass ever, and drink with all
companies, though you be sure to be drunk; you'll misreckon the
better, and be less ashamed on't. But your true trick, rascal, must
be, to be ever busy, and mistake away the bottles and cans, in haste,
before they be half drunk off, and never hear any body call, (if they
should chance to mark you,) till you have brought fresh, and be able
to forswear them. Give me a drink of ale.

OVER. This is the very womb and bed of enormity! gross as herself!
this must all down for enormity, all, every whit on't. [_Aside._

[_Knocking within._

URS. Look who's there, sirrah: five shillings a pig is my price, at
least; if it be a sow pig, sixpence more; if she be a great-bellied
wife, and long for't, sixpence more for that.

OVER. _O tempora! O mores!_ I would not have lost my discovery of this
one grievance, for my place, and worship o' the bench. How is the poor
subject abused here! Well, I will fall in with her, and with her
Mooncalf, and win out wonders of enormity. [_Comes forward._]--By thy
leave, goodly woman, and the fatness of the Fair, oily as the king's
constable's lamp, and shining as his shooing-horn! hath thy ale
virtue, or thy beer strength, that the tongue of man may be tickled,
and his palate pleased in the morning? Let thy pretty nephew here go
search and see.

URS. What new roarer is this?

MOON. O Lord! do you not know him, mistress? 'tis mad Arthur of
Bradley, that makes the orations.--Brave master, old Arthur of
Bradley, how do you? welcome to the Fair! when shall we hear you
again, to handle your matters, with your back against a booth, ha? I
have been one of your little disciples, in my days.

OVER. Let me drink, boy, with my love, thy aunt, here; that I may be
eloquent: but of thy best, lest it be bitter in my mouth, and my words
fall foul on the Fair.

URS. Why dost thou not fetch him drink, and offer him to sit?

MOON. Is it ale or beer, master Arthur?

OVER. Thy best, pretty stripling, thy best; the same thy dove
drinketh, and thou drawest on holydays.

URS. Bring him a sixpenny bottle of ale: they say, a fool's handsel is

OVER. Bring both, child. [_Sits down in the booth._] Ale for Arthur,
and Beer for Bradley. Ale for thine aunt, boy. [_Exit Mooncalf._]--My
disguise takes to the very wish and reach of it. I shall, by the
benefit of this, discover enough, and more: and yet get off with the
reputation of what I would be: a certain middling thing, between a
fool and a madman. [_Aside._

_Enter KNOCKEM._

KNOCK. What! my little lean Ursula! my she-bear! art thou alive yet,
with thy litter of pigs to grunt out another Bartholomew Fair? ha!

URS. Yes, and to amble a foot, when the Fair is done, to hear you
groan out of a cart, up the heavy hill--

KNOCK. Of Holbourn, Ursula, meanst thou so? for what, for what, pretty

URS. For cutting halfpenny purses, or stealing little penny dogs out
o' the Fair.

KNOCK. O! good words, good words, Urse.

OVER. Another special enormity. A cut-purse of the sword, the boot,
and the feather! those are his marks. [_Aside._

_Re-enter MOONCALF, with the ale, etc._

URS. You are one of those horse-leaches that gave out I was dead, in
Turnbull-street, of a surfeit of bottle-ale and tripes?

KNOCK. No, 'twas better meat, Urse: cow's udders, cow's udders!

URS. Well, I shall be meet with your mumbling mouth one day.

KNOCK. What! thou'lt poison me with a newt in a bottle of ale, wilt
thou? or a spider in a tobacco-pipe, Urse? Come, there's no malice in
these fat folks, I never fear thee, an I can scape thy lean Mooncalf
here. Let's drink it out, good Urse, and no vapours!

[_Exit Ursula._

OVER. Dost thou hear, boy? There's for thy ale, and the remnant for
thee.--Speak in thy faith of a faucet, now; is this goodly person
before us here, this vapours, a knight of the knife?

MOON. What mean you by that, master Arthur?

OVER. I mean a child of the horn-thumb, a babe of booty, boy, a

MOON. O Lord, sir! far from it. This is master Daniel Knockem Jordan:
the ranger of Turnbull. He is a horse-courser, sir.

OVER. Thy dainty dame, though, call'd him cut-purse.

MOON. Like enough, sir; she'll do forty such things in an hour (an you
listen to her) for her recreation, if the toy take her in the greasy
kerchief: it makes her fat, you see; she battens with it.

OVER. Here I might have been deceived now, and have put a fool's blot
upon myself, if I had not played an after game of discretion!

_Re-enter URSULA, dropping._

KNOCK. Alas, poor Urse! this is an ill season for thee.

URS. Hang yourself, hackney-man!

KNOCK. How, how, Urse! vapours? motion breed vapours?

URS. Vapours! never tusk, nor twirl your dibble, good Jordan, I know
what you'll take to a very drop. Though you be captain of the roarers,
and fight well at the case of piss-pots, you shall not fright me with
your lion-chap, sir, nor your tusks; you angry! you are hungry. Come,
a pig's head will stop your mouth, and stay your stomach at all times.

KNOCK. Thou art such another mad, merry Urse, still! troth I do make
conscience of vexing thee, now in the dog-days, this hot weather, for
fear of foundering thee in the body, and melting down a pillar of the
Fair. Pray thee take thy chair again, and keep state; and let's have a
fresh bottle of ale, and a pipe of tobacco; and no vapours. I'll have
this belly o' thine taken up, and thy grass scoured, wench.--


Look, here's Ezekiel Edgworth; a fine boy of his inches, as any is in
the Fair! has still money in his purse, and will pay all, with a kind
heart, and good vapours.

EDG. That I will indeed, willingly, master Knockem; fetch some ale and

[_Exit Mooncalf.--People cross the stage._

LEATH. What do you lack, gentlemen? maid, see a fine hobby-horse for
your young master; cost you but a token a-week his provender.


CORN. Have you any corns in your feet and toes?

MOUSE. Buy a mousetrap, a mousetrap, or a tormentor for a flea?

TRASH. Buy some gingerbread?

NIGHT. Ballads, ballads! fine new ballads:

  _Hear for your love, and buy for your money.
  A delicate ballad o' the ferret and the coney.
  A preservative again' the punk's evil.
  Another of goose-green starch, and the devil.
  A dozen of divine points, and the godly garters:
  The fairing of good counsel, of an ell and three-quarters._

What is't you buy?

  _The windmill blown down by the witch's fart.
  Or saint George, that, O! did break the dragon's heart._

_Re-enter MOONCALF, with ale and tobacco._

EDG. Master Nightingale, come hither, leave your mart a little.

NIGHT. O my secretary! what says my secretary?

[_They walk into the booth._

OVER. Child of the bottles, what's he? what's he?

[_Points to Edgworth._

MOON. A civil young gentleman, master Arthur, that keeps company with
the roarers, and disburses all still. He has ever money in his purse;
he pays for them, and they roar for him; one does good offices for
another. They call him the secretary, but he serves nobody. A great
friend of the ballad-man's, they are never asunder.

OVER. What pity 'tis, so civil a young man should haunt this debauched
company? here's the bane of the youth of our time apparent. A proper
penman, I see't in his countenance, he has a good clerk's look with
him, and I warrant him a quick hand.

MOON. A very quick hand, sir.


EDG. [_whispering with Nightingale and Ursula._] All the purses, and
purchase, I give you to-day by conveyance, bring hither to Ursula's
presently. Here we will meet at night in her lodge, and share. Look
you choose good places for your standing in the Fair, when you sing,

URS. Ay, near the fullest passages; and shift them often.

EDG. And in your singing, you must use your hawk's eye nimbly, and fly
the purse to a mark still, where 'tis worn, and on which side; that
you may give me the sign with your beak, or hang your head that way in
the tune.

URS. Enough, talk no more on't: your friendship, masters, is not now
to begin. Drink your draught of indenture, your sup of covenant, and
away: the Fair fills apace, company begins to come in, and I have
ne'er a pig ready yet.

KNOCK. Well said! fill the cups, and light the tobacco: let's give
fire in the works, and noble vapours.

EDG. And shall we have smocks, Ursula, and good whimsies, ha!

URS. Come, you are in your bawdy vein!--the best the Fair will afford,
Zekiel, if bawd Whit keep his word.--

_Re-enter MOONCALF._

How do the pigs, Mooncalf?

MOON. Very passionate, mistress, one of 'em has wept out an eye.
Master Arthur o' Bradley is melancholy here, nobody talks to him. Will
you any tobacco, master Arthur?

OVER. No, boy; let my meditations alone.

MOON. He's studying for an oration, now.

OVER. If I can with this day's travail, and all my policy, but rescue
this youth here out of the hands of the lewd man and the strange
woman, I will sit down at night, and say with my friend Ovid,

  _Jamque opus exegi, quod nec Jovis ira, nec ignis,_ etc. [_Aside._

KNOCK. Here, Zekiel, here's a health to Ursula, and a kind vapour;
thou hast money in thy purse still, and store! how dost thou come by
it? pray thee vapour thy friends some in a courteous vapour.

EDG. Half I have, master Dan. Knockem, is always at your service.

[_Pulls out his purse._

OVER. Ha, sweet nature! what goshawk would prey upon such a lamb?

KNOCK. Let's see what 'tis, Zekiel; count it, come, fill him to pledge


WINW. We are here before them, methinks.

QUAR. All the better, we shall see them come in now.

LEATH. What do you lack, gentlemen, what is't you lack? a fine horse?
a lion? a bull? a bear? a dog? or a cat? an excellent fine
Bartholomew-bird? or an instrument? what is't you lack?

QUAR. 'Slid! here's Orpheus among the beasts, with his fiddle and all!

TRASH. Will you buy any comfortable bread, gentlemen?

QUAR. And Ceres selling her daughter's picture, in ginger-work.

WINW. That these people should be so ignorant to think us chapmen for
them! do we look as if we would buy gingerbread, or hobby-horses?

QUAR. Why, they know no better ware than they have, nor better
customers than come: and our very being here makes us fit to be
demanded, as well as others. Would Cokes would come! there were a true
customer for them.

KNOCK. [_to Edgworth._] How much is't? thirty shillings? Who's yonder!
Ned Winwife and Tom Quarlous, I think! yes: (give me it all, give it
me all.)--Master Winwife! Master Quarlous! will you take a pipe of
tobacco with us?--Do not discredit me now, Zekiel.

[_Edgworth gives him his purse._

WINW. Do not see him: he is the roaring horse-courser, pray thee let's
avoid him: turn down this way.

QUAR. 'Slud, I'll see him, and roar with him too, an he roared as loud
as Neptune; pray thee go with me.

WINW. You may draw me to as likely an inconvenience, when you please,
as this.

QUAR. Go to then, come along; we have nothing to do, man, but to see
sights now.

[_They advance to the booth._

KNOCK. Welcome, master Quarlous, and master Winwife; will you take any
froth and smoke with us?

QUAR. Yes, sir; but you'll pardon us if we knew not of so much
familiarity between us afore.

KNOCK. As what, sir?

QUAR. To be so lightly invited to smoke and froth.

KNOCK. A good vapour! will you sit down, sir? this is old Ursula's
mansion; how like you her bower? Here you may have your punk and your
pig in state, sir, both piping hot.

QUAR. I had rather have my punk cold, sir.

OVER. There's for me: punk! and pig! [_Aside._

URS. [_within._] What, Mooncalf, you rogue!

MOON. By and by, the bottle is almost off, mistress; here, master

URS. [_within._] I'll part you and your play-fellow there, in the
garded coat, an you sunder not the sooner.

KNOCK. Master Winwife, you are proud, methinks, you do not talk, nor
drink; are you proud?

WINW. Not of the company I am in, sir, nor the place, I assure you.

KNOCK. You do not except at the company, do you! are you in vapours,

MOON. Nay, good master Daniel Knockem, respect my mistress's bower, as
you call it; for the honour of our booth, none o' your vapours here.

_Enter URSULA with a fire-brand._

URS. Why, you thin, lean polecat you, an they have a mind to be in
their vapours must you hinder 'em? What did you know, vermin, if they
would have lost a cloke, or such trifle? must you be drawing the air
of pacification here, while I am tormented within i' the fire, you
weasel? [_Aside to Mooncalf._

MOON. Good mistress, 'twas in behalf of your booth's credit that I

URS. Why! would my booth have broke, if they had fallen out in't, sir?
or would their heat have fired it? In, you rogue, and wipe the pigs,
and mend the fire, that they fall not, or I'll both baste and roast
you 'till your eyes drop out like them.--Leave the bottle behind you,
and be curst awhile!

[_Exit Mooncalf._

QUAR. Body o' the Fair! what's this? mother of the bawds?

KNOCK. No, she's mother of the pigs, sir, mother of the pigs.

WINW. Mother of the furies, I think, by her fire-brand.

QUAR. Nay, she is too fat to be a fury, sure some walking sow of

WINW. An inspired vessel of kitchen stuff!

QUAR. She'll make excellent geer for the coach-makers here in
Smithfield, to anoint wheels and axletrees with.

[_She drinks this while._

URS. Ay, ay, gamesters, mock a plain plump soft wench of the suburbs,
do, because she's juicy and wholesome; you must have your thin pinched
ware, pent up in the compass of a dog-collar, (or 'twill not do) that
looks like a long laced conger, set upright, and a green feather, like
fennel in the joll on't.

KNOCK. Well said, Urse, my good Urse! to 'em, Urse!

QUAR. Is she your quagmire, Daniel Knockem? is this your bog?

NIGHT. We shall have a quarrel presently.

KNOCK. How! bog! quagmire? foul vapours! humph!

QUAR. Yes, he that would venture for't, I assure him, might sink into
her and be drown'd a week ere any friend he had could find where he

WINW. And then he would be a fortnight weighing up again.

QUAR. 'Twere like falling into a whole shire of butter; they had need
be a team of Dutchmen should draw him out.

KNOCK. Answer 'em, Urse: where's thy Bartholomew wit now, Urse, thy
Bartholomew wit?

URS. Hang 'em, rotten, roguy cheaters, I hope to see them plagued one
day (pox'd they are already, I am sure) with lean playhouse poultry,
that has the bony rump, sticking out like the ace of spades, or the
point of a partizan, that every rib of them is like the tooth of a
saw; and will so grate them with their hips and shoulders, as (take
'em altogether) they were as good lie with a hurdle.

QUAR. Out upon her, how she drips! she's able to give a man the
sweating sickness with looking on her.

URS. Marry look off, with a patch on your face, and a dozen in your
breech, though they be of scarlet, sir. I have seen as fine outsides
as either of yours, bring lousy linings to the brokers, ere now, twice
a week.

QUAR. Do you think there may be a fine new cucking-stool in the Fair,
to be purchased; one large enough, I mean? I know there is a pond of
capacity for her.

URS. For your mother, you rascal! Out, you rogue, you hedge-bird, you
pimp, you pannier-man's bastard, you!

QUAR. Ha, ha, ha!

URS. Do you sneer, you dog's-head, you trendle-tail! you look as you
were begotten a top of a cart in harvest time, when the whelp was hot
and eager. Go, snuff after your brother's bitch, mistress Commodity;
that's the livery you wear, 'twill be out at the elbows shortly. It's
time you went to't for the t'other remnant.

KNOCK. Peace, Urse, peace, Urse;--they'll kill the poor whale, and
make oil of her. Pray thee, go in.

URS. I'll see them pox'd first, and piled, and double piled.

WINW. Let's away, her language grows greasier than her pigs.

URS. Does it so, snotty-nose? good lord! are you snivelling? You were
engendered on a she-beggar in a barn, when the bald thrasher, your
sire, was scarce warm.

WINW. Pray thee let's go.

QUAR. No, faith; I'll stay the end of her now; I know she cannot last
long: I find by her smiles she wanes apace.

URS. Does she so? I'll set you gone. Give me my pig-pan hither a
little: I'll scald you hence, an you will not go.


KNOCK. Gentlemen, these are very strange vapours, and very idle
vapours, I assure you.

QUAR. You are a very serious ass, we assure you.

KNOCK. Humph, _ass!_ and _serious!_ nay, then pardon me my vapour. I
have a foolish vapour, gentlemen: Any man that does vapour me the ass,
master Quarlous--

QUAR. What then, master Jordan?

KNOCK. I do vapour him the lie.

QUAR. Faith, and to any man that vapours me the lie, I do vapour that.

[_Strikes him._

KNOCK. Nay then, vapours upon vapours.

[_They fight._

_Re-enter URSULA, with the dripping-pan._

EDG. NIGHT. 'Ware the pan, the pan, the pan! she comes with the pan,
gentlemen! [_Ursula falls with the pan._]--God bless the woman.

URS. Oh!

[_Exeunt Quarlous and Winwife._

TRASH. [_runs in._] What's the matter?

OVER. Goodly woman!

MOON. Mistress!

URS. Curse of hell! that ever I saw these fiends! oh! I have scalded
my leg, my leg, my leg, my leg! I have lost a limb in the service! run
for some cream and sallad-oil, quickly. Are you under-peering, you
baboon? rip off my hose, an you be men, men, men.

MOON. Run you for some cream, good mother Joan. I'll look to your

[_Exit Trash._

LEATH. Best sit up in your chair, Ursula. Help, gentlemen.

KNOCK. Be of good cheer, Urse; thou hast hindered me the currying of a
couple of stallions here, that abused the good race-bawd of
Smithfield; 'twas time for them to go.

NIGHT. I' faith, when the pan came,--they had made you run else. This
had been a fine time for purchase, if you had ventured. [_Aside to

EDG. Not a whit, these fellows were too fine to carry money.

KNOCK. Nightingale, get some help to carry her leg out of the air:
take off her shoes. Body o' me! she has the mallanders, the scratches,
the crown scab, and the quitter bone in the t'other leg.

URS. Oh, the pox! why do you put me in mind of my leg thus, to make it
prick and shoot? Would you have me in the hospital afore my time?

KNOCK. Patience, Urse, take a good heart, 'tis but a blister as big as
a windgall. I'll take it away with the white of an egg, a little honey
and hog's grease, have thy pasterns well roll'd, and thou shalt pace
again by to-morrow. I'll tend thy booth, and look to thy affairs the
while: thou shalt sit in thy chair, and give directions, and shine
Ursa major.

[_Exeunt Knockem and Mooncalf, with Ursula in her chair._

OVER. These are the fruits of bottle-ale and tobacco! the foam of the
one, and the fumes of the other! Stay, young man, and despise not the
wisdom of these few hairs that are grown grey in care of thee.

EDG. Nightingale, stay a little. Indeed I'll hear some of this!

_Enter COKES, with his box, WASPE, Mistress OVERDO, and GRACE._

COKES. Come, Numps, come, where are you? Welcome into the Fair,
mistress Grace.

EDG. 'Slight, he will call company, you shall see, and put us into
goings presently.

OVER. Thirst not after that frothy liquor, ale; for who knows when he
openeth the stopple, what may be in the bottle? Hath not a snail, a
spider, yea, a newt been found there? thirst not after it, youth;
thirst not after it.

COKES. This is a brave fellow, Numps, let's hear him.

WASPE. 'Sblood! how brave is he? in a garded coat! You were best truck
with him; e'en strip, and truck presently, it will become you. Why
will you hear him? because he is an ass, and may be a-kin to the

COKES. O, good Numps.

OVER. Neither do thou lust after that tawney weed tobacco.

COKES. Brave words!

OVER. Whose complexion is like the Indian's that vents it.

COKES. Are they not brave words, sister?

OVER. And who can tell, if before the gathering and making up thereof,
the Alligarta hath not piss'd thereon?

WASPE. 'Heart! let 'em be brave words, as brave as they will! an they
were all the brave words in a country, how then? Will you away yet,
have you enough on him? Mistress Grace, come you away; I pray you, be
not you accessary. If you do lose your license, or somewhat else, sir,
with listening to his fables, say Numps is a witch, with all my heart,
do, say so.

COKES. Avoid in your satin doublet, Numps.

OVER. The creeping venom of which subtle serpent, as some late writers
affirm, neither the cutting of the perilous plant, nor the drying of
it, nor the lighting or burning, can any way persway or assuage.

COKES. Good, i'faith! is it not, sister?

OVER. Hence it is that the lungs of the tobacconist are rotted, the
liver spotted, the brain smoked like the backside of the pig-woman's
booth here, and the whole body within, black as her pan you saw e'en
now, without.

COKES. A fine similitude that, sir! did you see the pan?

EDG. Yes, sir.

OVER. Nay, the hole in the nose here of some tobacco-takers, or the
third nostril, if I may so call it, which makes that they can vent the
tobacco out, like the ace of clubs, or rather the flower-de-lis, is
caused from the tobacco, the mere tobacco! when the poor innocent pox,
having nothing to do there, is miserably and most unconscionably

COKES. Who would have missed this, sister?

MRS. OVER. Not any body but Numps.

COKES. He does not understand.

EDG. [_picks Cokes's pocket of his purse._] Nor you feel. [_Aside._

COKES. What would you have, sister, of a fellow that knows nothing but
a basket-hilt, and an old fox in't? the best musick in the Fair will
not move a log.

EDG. [_gives the purse aside to Nightingale._] In, to Ursula,
Nightingale, and carry her comfort: see it told. This fellow was sent
to us by Fortune, for our first fairing.

[_Exit Nightingale._

OVER. But what speak I of the diseases of the body, children of the

COKES. That's to us, sister. Brave, i'faith!

OVER. Hark, O you sons and daughters of Smithfield! and hear what
malady it doth the mind: it causeth swearing, it causeth swaggering,
it causeth snuffling and snarling, and now and then a hurt.

MRS. OVER. He hath something of master Overdo, methinks, brother.

COKES. So methought, sister, very much of my brother Overdo: and 'tis
when he speaks.

OVER. Look into any angle of the town, the Streights, or the Bermudas,
where the quarrelling lesson is read, and how do they entertain the
time, but with bottle-ale and tobacco? The lecturer is o' one side,
and his pupils o' the other; but the seconds are still bottle-ale and
tobacco, for which the lecturer reads, and the novices pay. Thirty
pound a week in bottle-ale! forty in tobacco! and ten more in ale
again. Then for a suit to drink in, so much, and, that being slaver'd,
so much for another suit, and then a third suit, and a fourth suit!
and still the bottle-ale slavereth, and the tobacco stinketh.

WASPE. Heart of a madman! are you rooted here? will you never away?
what can any man find out in this bawling fellow, to grow here for? He
is a full handful higher sin' he heard him. Will you fix here, and set
up a booth, sir?

OVER. I will conclude briefly--

WASPE. Hold your peace, you roaring rascal, I'll run my head in your
chaps else. You were best build a booth, and entertain him; make your
will, an you say the word, and him your heir! heart, I never knew one
taken with a mouth of a peck afore. By this light, I'll carry you away
on my back, an you will not come.

[_He gets Cokes up on pick-back._

COKES. Stay, Numps, stay, set me down: I have lost my purse, Numps. O
my purse! One of my fine purses is gone!

MRS. OVER. Is it indeed, brother?

COKES. Ay, as I am an honest man, would I were an arrant rogue else! a
plague of all roguy damn'd cut-purses for me.

[_Examines his pockets._

WASPE. Bless 'em with all my heart, with all my heart, do you see!
now, as I am no infidel, that I know of, I am glad on't. Ay, I am,
(here's my witness,) do you see, sir? I did not tell you of his
fables, I! no, no, I am a dull malt horse, I, I know nothing. Are you
not justly served, in your conscience, now, speak in your conscience?
Much good do you with all my heart, and his good heart that has it,
with all my heart again.

EDG. This fellow is very charitable, would he had a purse too! but I
must not be too bold all at a time. [_Aside._

COKES. Nay, Numps, it is not my best purse.

WASPE. Not your best! death! why should it be your worst? why should
it be any, indeed, at all? answer me to that, give me a reason from
you, why it should be any?

COKES. Nor my gold, Numps; I have that yet, look here else, sister.

[_Shews the other purse._

WASPE. Why so, there's all the feeling he has!

MRS. OVER. I pray you, have a better care of that, brother.

COKES. Nay, so I will, I warrant you; let him catch this that catch
can. I would fain see him get this, look you here.

WASPE. So, so, so, so, so, so, so, so! very good.

COKES. I would have him come again now, and but offer at it. Sister,
will you take notice of a good jest? I will put it just where the
other was, and if we have good luck, you shall see a delicate fine
trap to catch the cut-purse nibbling.

EDG. Faith, and he'll try ere you be out o' the Fair. [_Aside._

COKES. Come, mistress Grace, prithee be not melancholy for my
mischance; sorrow will not keep it, sweet-heart.

GRACE. I do not think on't, sir.

COKES. 'Twas but a little scurvy white money, hang it! it may hang the
cut-purse one day. I have gold left to give thee a fairing yet, as
hard as the world goes. Nothing angers me but that no body here look'd
like a cut-purse, unless 'twere Numps.

WASPE. How! I, I look like a cut-purse? death! your sister's a
cut-purse! and your mother and father, and all your kin were
cut-purses! and here is a rogue is the bawd o' the cut-purses, whom I
will beat to begin with.

[_They speak all together; and Waspe beats Overdo._

OVER. Hold thy hand, child of wrath, and heir of anger, make it not
Childermass day in thy fury, or the feast of the French Bartholomew,
parent of the massacre.

COKES. Numps, Numps!

MRS. OVER. Good master Humphrey!

WASPE. You are the Patrico, are you? the patriarch of the cut-purses?
You share, sir, they say; let them share this with you. Are you in
your hot fit of preaching again? I'll cool you.

OVER. Murther, murther, murther!



SCENE I.--_The Fair._

_LANTHORN LEATHERHEAD, JOAN TRASH, and others, sitting by their wares,
as before._


WHIT. Nay, tish all gone, now! dish tish, phen tou wilt not be phitin
call, master offisher, phat ish a man te better to lishen out noyshes
for tee, and ton art in an oder orld, being very shuffishient noyshes
and gallantsh too? one o' their brabblesh would have fed ush all dish
fortnight, but tou art so bushy about beggersh still, tou hast no
leshure to intend shentlemen, and't be.

HAG. Why, I told you, Davy Bristle.

BRI. Come, come, you told me a pudding, Toby Haggise; a matter of
nothing; I am sure it came to nothing. You said, let's go to Ursula's,
indeed; but then you met the man with the monsters, and I could not
get you from him. An old fool, not leave seeing yet!

HAG. Why, who would have thought any body would have quarrell'd so
early; or that the ale o' the fair would have been up so soon?

WHIT. Phy, phat a clock toest tou tink it ish, man?

HAG. I cannot tell.

WHIT. Tou art a vish vatchman, i' te mean teem.

HAG. Why, should the watch go by the clock, or the clock by the watch,
I pray?

BRI. One should go by another, if they did well.

WHIT. Tou art right now! phen didst tou ever know or hear of a
shuffishient vatchment, but he did tell the clock, phat bushiness
soever he had?

BRI. Nay, that's most true, a sufficient watchman knows what a clock
it is.

WHIT. Shleeping or vaking: ash well as te clock himshelf, or te Jack
dat shtrikes him.

BRI. Let's enquire of master Leatherhead, or Joan Trash here.--Master
Leatherhead, do you hear, master Leatherhead?

WHIT. If it be a Ledderhead, tish a very tick Ledderhead, tat sho mush
noish vill not piersh him.

LEATH. I have a little business now, good friends, do not trouble me.

WHIT. Phat, because o' ty wrought neet-cap, and ty phelvet sherkin,
man? phy! I have sheene tee in ty ledder sherkin, ere now, mashter o'
de hobby-horses, as bushy and stately as tou sheemest to be.

TRASH. Why, what an you have, captain Whit? he has his choice of
jerkins, you may see by that, and his caps too, I assure you, when he
pleases to be either sick or employed.

LEATH. God-a-mercy, Joan, answer for me.

WHIT. Away, be not sheen in my company, here be shentlemen, and men of

[_Exeunt Haggise and Bristle._


QUAR. We had wonderful ill luck, to miss this prologue o' the purse:
but the best is, we shall have five acts of him ere night: he'll be
spectacle enough, I'll answer for't.

WHIT. O creesh, duke Quarlous, how dosht tou? tou dosht not know me, I
fear: I am te vishesht man, but justish Overdo, in all Bartholomew
Fair now. Give me twelve-pence from tee, I vill help tee to a vife
vorth forty marks for't, and't be.

QUAR. Away, rogue; pimp, away.

WHIT. And she shall shew tee as fine cut orke for't in her shmock too
as tou cansht vish i'faith; vilt tou have her, vorshipful Vinvife? I
vill help tee to her here, be an't be, into pig-quarter, gi' me ty
twelve-pence from tee.

WINW. Why, there's twelve-pence, pray thee wilt thou begone?

WHIT. Tou art a vorthy man, and a vorshipful man still.

QUAR. Get you gone, rascal.

WHIT. I do mean it, man. Prinsh Quarlous, if tou hasht need on me, tou
shalt find me here at Ursla's, I vill see phat ale and punque ish i'
te pigsty for tee, bless ty good vorship.


QUAR. Look! who comes here: John Littlewit!

WINW. And his wife, and my widow, her mother: the whole family.

QUAR. 'Slight, you must give them all fairings now.

WINW. Not I, I'll not see them.

QUAR. They are going a feasting. What schoolmaster's that is with 'em?

WINW. That's my rival, I believe, the baker.


BUSY. So, walk on in the middle way, fore-right, turn neither to the
right hand nor to the left; let not your eyes be drawn aside with
vanity, nor your ear with noises.

QUAR. O, I know him by that start.

LEATH. What do you lack, what do you buy, mistress? a fine
hobby-horse, to make your son a tilter? a drum to make him a soldier?
a fiddle to make him a reveller? what is't you lack? little dogs for
your daughters? or babies, male or female?

BUSY. Look not toward them, hearken not; the place is Smithfield, or
the field of smiths, the grove of hobby-horses and trinkets, the wares
are the wares of devils, and the whole Fair is the shop of Satan: they
are hooks and baits, very baits, that are hung out on every side, to
catch you, and to hold you, as it were, by the gills, and by the
nostrils, as the fisher doth; therefore you must not look nor turn
toward them.--The heathen man could stop his ears with wax against the
harlot of the sea; do you the like with your fingers against the bells
of the beast.

WINW. What flashes come from him!

QUAR. O, he has those of his oven; a notable hot baker, 'twas when he
plied the peel; he is leading his flock into the Fair now.

WINW. Rather driving them to the pens: for he will let them look upon

_Enter KNOCKEM and WHIT from URSULA'S booth._

KNOCK. Gentlewomen, the weather's hot; whither walk you? have a care
of your fine velvet caps, the Fair is dusty. Take a sweet delicate
booth, with boughs, here in the way, and cool yourselves in the shade;
you and your friends. The best pig and bottle-ale in the Fair, sir.
Old Ursula is cook, there you may read; [_points to the sign, a pig's
head, with a large writing under it._] the pig's head speaks it. Poor
soul, she has had a string-halt, the maryhinchco; but she's prettily

WHIT. A delicate show-pig, little mistress, with shweet sauce, and
crackling, like de bay-leaf i' de fire, la! tou shalt ha' de clean
side o' de table-clot, and di glass vash'd with phatersh of dame
Annesh Cleare.

LIT. [_gazing at the inscription._] This is fine verily. _Here be the
best pigs, and she does roast them as well as ever she did_, the pig's
head says.

KNOCK. Excellent, excellent, mistress; with fire o' juniper and
rosemary branches! the oracle of the pig's head, that, sir.

PURE. Son, were you not warn'd of the vanity of the eye? have you
forgot the wholesome admonition so soon?

LIT. Good mother, how shall we find a pig, if we do not look about
for't: will it run off o' the spit, into our mouths, think you, as in
Lubberland, and cry, _wee, wee!_

BUSY. No, but your mother, religiously-wise, conceiveth it may offer
itself by other means to the sense, as by way of steam, which I think
it doth here in this place--huh, huh--yes, it doth. [_He scents after
it like a hound._] And it were a sin of obstinacy, great obstinacy,
high and horrible obstinacy, to decline or resist the good titillation
of the famelic sense, which is the smell. Therefore be bold--huh, huh,
huh--follow the scent: enter the tents of the unclean, for once, and
satisfy your wife's frailty. Let your frail wife be satisfied; your
zealous mother, and my suffering self, will also be satisfied.

LIT. Come, Win, as good winny here as go farther, and see nothing.

BUSY. We scape so much of the other vanities, by our early entering.

PURE. It is an edifying consideration.

MRS. LIT. This is scurvy, that we must come into the Fair, and not
look on't.

LIT. Win, have patience, Win, I'll tell you more anon.

[_Exeunt, into the booth, Littlewit, Mrs. Littlewit, Busy, and

KNOCK. Mooncalf, entertain within there, the best pig in the booth, a
pork-like pig. These are Banbury-bloods, o' the sincere stud, come a
pig-hunting. Whit, wait, Whit, look to your charge.

[_Exit Whit._

BUSY. [_within._] A pig prepare presently, let a pig be prepared to


MOON. 'Slight, who be these?

URS. Is this the good service, Jordan, you'd do me?

KNOCK. Why, Urse, why, Urse? thou'lt have vapours i' thy leg again
presently, pray thee go in, it may turn to the scratches else.

URS. Hang your vapours, they are stale, and stink like you! Are these
the guests o' the game you promised to fill my pit withal to-day?

KNOCK. Ay, what ail they, Urse?

URS. Ail they! they are all sippers, sippers o' the city; they look as
they would not drink off two pen'orth of bottle-ale amongst 'em.

MOON. A body may read that in their small printed ruffs.

KNOCK. Away, thou art a fool, Urse, and thy Mooncalf too: in your
ignorant vapours now! hence! good guests, I say, right hypocrites,
good gluttons. In, and set a couple o' pigs on the board, and half a
dozen of the biggest bottles afore 'em, and call Whit. [_Exit
Mooncalf._] I do not love to hear innocents abused; fine ambling
hypocrites! and a stone puritan with a sorrel head and beard! good
mouth'd gluttons; two to a pig, away.

URS. Are you sure they are such?

KNOCK. O' the right breed, thou shalt try 'em by the teeth, Urse;
where's this Whit?

_Re-enter WHIT._

WHIT. _Behold, man, and see,
  What a worthy man am ee!
  With the fury of my sword,
  And the shaking of my beard,
  I will make ten thousand men afeard._

KNOCK. Well said, brave Whit! in, and _fear_ the ale out o' the
bottles into the bellies of the brethren, and . . . the sisters drink
to the cause, and pure vapours.

[_Exeunt Knockem, Whit, and Ursula._

QUAR. My roarer is turn'd tapster, methinks. Now were a fine time for
thee, Winwife, to lay aboard thy widow, thou'lt never be master of a
better season or place; she that will venture herself into the Fair
and a pig-box, will admit any assault, be assured of that.

WINW. I love not enterprises of that suddenness though.

QUAR. I'll warrant thee, then, no wife out of the widow's hundred: if
I had but as much title to her, as to have breathed once on that
straight stomacher of hers, I would now assure myself to carry her,
yet, ere she went out of Smithfield; or she should carry me, which
were the fitter sight, I confess. But you are a modest undertaker, by
circumstances and degrees; come, 'tis disease in thee, not judgment; I
should offer at all together.--

_Enter OVERDO._

Look, here's the poor fool again, that was stung by the Waspe

OVER. I will make no more orations, shall draw on these tragical
conclusions. And I begin now to think, that by a spice of collateral
justice, Adam Overdo deserved this beating; for I, the said Adam, was
one cause (a by-cause) why the purse was lost; and my wife's brother's
purse too, which they know not of yet. But I shall make very good
mirth with it at supper, that will be the sport, and put my little
friend, master Humphrey Waspe's choler quite out of countenance: when,
sitting at the upper end of my table, as I use, and drinking to my
brother Cokes, and mistress Alice Overdo, as I will, my wife, for
their good affection to old Bradley, I deliver to them, it was I that
was cudgeled, and shew them the marks. To see what bad events may peep
out o' the tail of good purposes! the care I had of that civil young
man I took fancy to this morning, (and have not left it yet,) drew me
to that exhortation, which drew the company indeed; which drew the
cut-purse; which drew the money; which drew my brother Cokes his loss;
which drew on Waspe's anger; which drew on my beating: a pretty
gradation! and they shall have it in their dish, i'faith, at night for
fruit; I love to be merry at my table. I had thought once, at one
special blow he gave me, to have revealed myself; but then (I thank
thee, fortitude) I remembered that a wise man, and who is ever so
great a part of the commonwealth in himself, for no particular
disaster ought to abandon a public good design. The husbandman ought
not, for one unthankful year, to forsake the plough; the shepherd
ought not, for one scabbed sheep, to throw by his tar-box; the pilot
ought not, for one leak in the poop, to quit the helm; nor the
alderman ought not, for one custard more at a meal, to give up his
cloke; the constable ought not to break his staff, and forswear the
watch, for one roaring night; nor the piper of the parish, _ut parvis
componere magna solebam_, to put up his pipes for one rainy Sunday.
These are certain knocking conclusions; out of which, I am resolved,
come what come can, come beating, come imprisonment, come infamy, come
banishment, nay, come the rack, come the hurdle, (welcome all,) I will
not discover who I am, till my due time; and yet still, all shall be,
as I said ever, in justice name, and the king's, and for the

[_Exit Overdo._

WINW. What does he talk to himself, and act so seriously, poor fool!

QUAR. No matter what. Here's fresher argument, intend that.

_Enter COKES, Mistress OVERDO, and GRACE WELLBORN, followed by WASPE,
loaded with toys._

COKES. Come, mistress Grace, come, sister, here's more fine sights
yet, i'faith. Od's 'lid, where's Numps?

LEATH. What do you lack, gentlemen? what is't you buy? fine rattles,
drums, babies, little dogs, and birds for ladies? what do you lack?

COKES. Good honest Numps, keep afore, I am so afraid thou'lt lose
somewhat; my heart was at my mouth, when I mist thee.

WASPE. You were best buy a whip in your hand to drive me.

COKES. Nay, do not mistake, Numps; thou art so apt to mistake! I would
but watch the goods. Look you now, the treble fiddle was e'en almost
like to be lost.

WASPE. Pray you take heed you lose not yourself; your best way were
e'en get up and ride for more surety. Buy a token's worth of great
pins, to fasten yourself to my shoulder.

LEATH. What do you lack, gentlemen? fine purses, pouches, pincases,
pipes? what is't you lack? a pair o' smiths to wake you in the
morning? or a fine whistling bird?

COKES. Numps, here be finer things than any we have bought by odds!
and more delicate horses, a great deal; good Numps, stay, and come

WASPE. Will you scourse with him? you are in Smithfield, you may fit
yourself with a fine easy-going street-nag, for your saddle, again
Michaelmas term, do: has he ne'er a little odd cart for you to make a
caroch on, in the country, with four pied hobby-horses? Why the
measles should you stand here, with your train, cheapning of dogs,
birds, and babies? you have no children to bestow them on, have you?

COKES. No, but again I have children, Numps, that's all one.

WASPE. Do, do, do, do; how many shall you have, think you? an I were
as you, I'd buy for all my tenants too, they are a kind of civil
savages, that will part with their children for rattles, pipes, and
knives. You were best buy a hatchet or two, and truck with 'em.

COKES. Good Numps, hold that little tongue o' thine, and save it a
labour. I am resolute Bat, thou know'st.

WASPE. A resolute fool you are, I know, and a very sufficient coxcomb;
with all my heart;--nay, you have it, sir, an you be angry, turd in
your teeth, twice; if I said it not once afore, and much good do you.

WINW. Was there ever such a self-affliction, and so impertinent?

QUAR. Alas, his care will go near to crack him; let's in and comfort

[_They come forward._

WASPE. Would I had been set in the ground, all but the head on me, and
had my brains bowled at, or threshed out, when first I underwent this
plague of a charge!

QUAR. How now, Numps! almost tired in your protectorship? overparted,

WASPE. Why, I cannot tell, sir, it may be I am; does it grieve you?

QUAR. No, I swear does't not, Numps; to satisfy you.

WASPE. Numps! 'sblood, you are fine and familiar: how long have we
been acquainted, I pray you?

QUAR. I think it may be remembered, Numps, that; 'twas since morning,

WASPE. Why, I hope I know't well enough, sir; I did not ask to be

QUAR. No! why, then?

WASPE. It's no matter why; you see with your eyes now, what I said to
you to-day: you'll believe me another time?

QUAR. Are you removing the Fair, Numps?

WASPE. A pretty question, and a civil one! yes faith, I have my
lading, you see, or shall have anon; you may know whose beast I am by
my burden. If the pannier-man's jack were ever better known by his
loins of mutton, I'll be flayed, and feed dogs for him when his time

WINW. How melancholic mistress Grace is yonder! pray thee let's go
enter ourselves in grace with her.

COKES. Those six horses, friend, I'll have--


COKES. And the three Jew's-trumps; and half a dozen o' birds, and that
drum, (I have one drum already) and your smiths; I like that device of
your smiths, very pretty well; and four halberts--and, let me see,
that fine painted great lady, and her three women for state, I'll

WASPE. No, the shop; buy the whole shop, it will be best, the shop,
the shop!

LEATH. If his worship please.

WASPE. Yes, and keep it during the Fair, Bobchin.

COKES. Peace, Numps.--Friend, do not meddle with him, an you be wise,
and would shew your head above board; he will sting thorough your
wrought night-cap, believe me. A set of these violins I would buy too,
for a delicate young noise I have in the country, that are every one a
size less than another, just like your fiddles. I would fain have a
fine young masque at my marriage, now I think on't: But I do want such
a number of things!--And Numps will not help me now, and I dare not
speak to him.

TRASH. Will your worship buy any gingerbread, very good bread,
comfortable bread?

COKES. Gingerbread! yes, let's see.

[_Runs to her shop._

WASPE. There's the t'other springe.

LEATH. Is this well, goody Joan, to interrupt my market in the midst,
and call away my customers? can you answer this at the Pie-poudres?

TRASH. Why, if his mastership has a mind to buy, I hope my ware lies
as open as another's; I may shew my ware as well as you yours.

COKES. Hold your peace; I'll content you both: I'll buy up his shop,
and thy basket.

WASPE. Will you, i'faith?

LEATH. Why should you put him from it, friend?

WASPE. Cry you mercy! you'd be sold too, would you? what's the price
on you, jerkin and all, as you stand? have you any qualities?

TRASH. Yes, good man, angry-man, you shall find he has qualities if
you cheapen him.

WASPE. Od's so, you have the selling of him! What are they, will they
be bought for love or money?

TRASH. No indeed, sir.

WASPE. For what then, victuals?

TRASH. He scorns victuals, sir; he has bread and butter at home,
thanks be to God! and yet he will do more for a good meal, if the toy
take him in the belly; marry then they must not set him at lower ends,
if they do, he'll go away, though he fast; but put him a-top o' the
table, where his place is, and he'll do you forty fine things. He has
not been sent for, and sought out for nothing, at your great
city-suppers, to put down Coriat and Cokely, and been laughed at for
his labour; he'll play you all the puppets in the town over, and the
players, every company, and his own company too; he spares nobody.

COKES. I'faith?

TRASH. He was the first, sir, that ever baited the fellow in the
bear's skin, an't like your worship: no dog ever came near him since.
And for fine motions!

COKES. Is he good at those too? can he set out a masque, trow?

TRASH. O lord, master! sought to far and near for his inventions; and
he engrosses all, he makes all the puppets in the Fair.

COKES. Dost thou, in troth, old velvet jerkin? give me thy hand.

TRASH. Nay, sir, you shall see him in his velvet jerkin, and a scarf
too at night, when you hear him interpret master Littlewit's motion.

COKES. Speak no more, but shut up shop presently, friend, I'll buy
both it and thee too, to carry down with me; and her hamper beside.
Thy shop shall furnish out the masque, and her's the banquet: I cannot
go less, to set out any thing with credit. What's the price, at a
word, of thy whole shop, case and all as it stands?

LEATH. Sir, it stands me in six and twenty shillings seven-pence
halfpenny, besides three shillings for my ground.

COKES. Well, thirty shillings will do all, then! and what comes yours

TRASH. Four shillings and eleven-pence, sir, ground and all, an't like
your worship.

COKES. Yes, it does like my worship very well, poor woman; that's five
shillings more: what a masque shall I furnish out, for forty
shillings, twenty pound Scotch, and a banquet of gingerbread! there's
a stately thing! Numps? sister?--and my wedding gloves too! that I
never thought on afore! All my wedding gloves gingerbread? O me! what
a device will there be, to make 'em eat their fingers' ends! and
delicate brooches for the bridemen and all! and then I'll have this
poesie put to them, _For the best grace_, meaning mistress Grace, my
wedding poesie.

GRACE. I am beholden to you, sir, and to your Bartholomew wit.

WASPE. You do not mean this, do you? Is this your first purchase?

COKES. Yes, faith: and I do not think, Numps, but thou'lt say, it was
the wisest act that ever I did in my wardship.

WASPE. Like enough! I shall say any thing, I!

_Enter EDGWORTH, NIGHTINGALE and People, followed, at a distance, by

OVER. I cannot beget a project, with all my political brain yet: my
project is how to fetch off this proper young man from his debauched
company. I have followed him all the Fair over, and still I find him
with this songster, and I begin shrewdly to suspect their familiarity;
and the young man of a terrible taint, poetry! with which idle disease
if he be infected, there's no hope of him, in a state-course. _Actum
est_ of him for a commonwealth's-man, if he go to't in rhyme once.

EDG. [_to Nightingale._] Yonder he is buying of gingerbread; set in
quickly, before he part with too much of his money.

NIGHT. [advancing and singing.] _My masters, and friends, and good
people, draw near--_

COKES. [_runs to the ballad-man._] Ballads! hark! hark! pray thee,
fellow, stay a little; good Numps, look to the goods. What ballads
hast thou? let me see, let me see myself.

WASPE. Why so! he's flown to another lime-bush, there he will flutter
as long more; till he have ne'er a feather left. Is there a vexation
like this, gentlemen? will you believe me now, hereafter, shall I have
credit with you?

QUAR. Yes, faith shalt thou, Numps, and thou art worthy on't, for thou
sweatest for't. I never saw a young pimp-errant and his squire better

WINW. Faith, the sister comes after them well too.

GRACE. Nay, if you saw the justice her husband, my guardian, you were
fitted for the mess, he is such a wise one his way--

WINW. I wonder we see him not here.

GRACE. O! he is too serious for this place, and yet better sport then
than the other three, I assure you, gentlemen, wherever he is, though
it be on the bench.

COKES. How dost thou call it? _A caveat against cut-purses!_ a good
jest, i'faith, I would fain see that demon, your cut-purse you talk
of, that delicate-handed devil; they say he walks hereabout; I would
see him walk now. Look you, sister, here, here [_he shews his purse
boastingly_], let him come, sister, and welcome. Ballad-man, does any
cut-purses haunt hereabout? pray thee raise me one or two; begin, and
shew me one.

NIGHT. Sir, this is a spell against them, spick and span new; and 'tis
made as 'twere in mine own person, and I sing it in mine own defence.
But 'twill cost a penny alone, if you buy it.

COKES. No matter for the price; thou dost not know me, I see, I am an
odd Bartholomew.

MRS. OVER. Has it a fine picture, brother?

COKES. O, sister, do you remember the ballads over the nursery chimney
at home o' my own pasting up? there be brave pictures, other manner of
pictures than these, friend.

WASPE. Yet these will serve to pick the pictures out of your pockets,
you shall see.

COKES. So I heard them say! Pray thee mind him not, fellow; he'll have
an oar in every thing.

NIGHT. It was intended, sir, as if a purse should chance to be cut in
my presence, now, I may be blameless though; as by the sequel will
more plainly appear.

COKES. We shall find that in the matter: pray thee begin.

NIGHT. To the tune of Paggington's pound, sir.

COKES. [sings.] _Fa, la la la, la la la, fa, la la la!_ Nay, I'll put
thee in tune and all; mine own country dance! Pray thee begin.

NIGHT. It is a gentle admonition, you must know, sir, both to the
purse-cutter and the purse-bearer.

COKES. Not a word more out of the tune, an thou lov'st me; _Fa, la la
la, la la la, fa, la la la._ Come, when?

NIGHT. [sings.] _My masters, and friends, and good people, draw near,
  And look to your purses, for that I do say;_

COKES. Ha, ha, this chimes! Good counsel at first dash.

NIGHT. _And tho' little money in them you do bear,
  It costs more to get, than to lose in a day._

COKES. Good!

NIGHT. _You oft have been told,
     Both the young and the old,
  And bidden beware of the cut-purse so bold;_

COKES. Well said! he were to blame that would not, i'faith.

NIGHT. _Then if you take heed not, free me from the curse,
  Who both give you warning, for, and the cut-purse.
  Youth, youth, thou had'st better been starved by thy nurse,
  Than live to be hanged for cutting a purse._

COKES. Good, i'faith; how say you, Numps, is there any harm in this?

NIGHT. _It hath been upbraided to men of my trade,
  That oftentimes we are the cause of this crime;_

COKES. The more coxcombs they that did it, I wusse.

NIGHT. _Alack and for pity, why should it be said?
  As if they regarded or places or time!
     Examples have been
     Of some that were seen
  In Westminster-hall, yea the pleaders between;
  Then why should the judges be free from this curse,
  More than my poor self, for cutting the purse?_

COKES. God a mercy for that! why should they be more free indeed?

NIGHT. _Youth, youth, thou had'st better been starved by thy nurse,
  Than live to be hanged for cutting a purse._

COKES. That again, good ballad-man, that again. [_He sings the burden
with him._] O rare! I would fain rub mine elbow now, but I dare not
pull out my hand.--On, I pray thee; he that made this ballad shall be
poet to my masque.

NIGHT. _At Worc'ster, 'tis known well, and even in the jail,
  A knight of good worship did there shew his face,
  Against the foul sinners, in zeal for to rail,
  And lost _ipso facto_ his purse in the place._

COKES. Is it possible?

NIGHT. _Nay, once from the seat
     Of judgment so great,
  A judge there did lose a fair pouch of velvéte._

COKES. I'faith?

NIGHT. _O Lord for thy mercy, how wicked or worse,
  Are those that so venture their necks for a purse!
  Youth, youth, thou had'st better been starv'd by thy nurse,
  Than lived to be hanged for cutting a purse._

COKES. [sings after him.] _Youth, youth, etc._--Pray thee, stay a
little, friend. Yet o' thy conscience, Numps, speak, is there any harm
in this?

WASPE. To tell you true, 'tis too good for you, less you had grace to
follow it.

OVER. It doth discover enormity, I'll mark it more: I have not liked a
paltry piece of poetry so well a good while. [_Aside._

COKES. _Youth, youth, etc.;_ where's this youth now? a man must call
upon him for his own good, and yet he will not appear. Look here,
here's for him; [_shews his purse._] handy dandy, which hand will he
have? On, I pray thee, with the rest; I do hear of him, but I cannot
see him, this master youth, the cut-purse.

NIGHT. _At plays, and at sermons, and at the sessions,
  'Tis daily their practice such booty to make.
  Yea under the gallows at executions,
  They stick not the stare-abouts' purses to take.
     Nay one without grace,
     At a [far] better place,
  At court, and in Christmas, before the king's face._

COKES. That was a fine fellow! I would have him now.

NIGHT. _Alack then for pity must I bear the curse,
  That only belongs to the cunning cut-purse?_

COKES. But where's their cunning now, when they should use it? they
are all chain'd now, I warrant you. [_Sings._] _Youth, youth, thou
had'st better_--The rat-catchers' charms are all fools and asses to
this: a pox on them, that they will not come! that a man should have
such a desire to a thing, and want it!

QUAR. 'Fore God I'd give half the Fair, an 'twere mine, for a
cut-purse for him, to save his longing.

COKES. Look you, sister [_shews his purse again_], here, here, where
is't now? which pocket is't in, for a wager?

WASPE. I beseech you leave your wagers, and let him end his matter,
an't may be.

COKES. O, are you edified, Numps!

OVER. Indeed he does interrupt him too much: there Numps spoke to
purpose. [_Aside._

COKES. Sister, I am an ass, I cannot keep my purse! [_Shews it again,
and puts it up._]--On, on, I pray thee, friend.

NIGHT. _Youth, youth, thou hadst better been starv'd by thy nurse,
  Than live to be hanged for cutting a purse._

[_As Nightingale sings, Edgworth gets up to Cokes, and tickles him in
the ear with a straw twice to draw his hand out of his pocket._

WINW. Will you see sport? look, there's a fellow gathers up to him,

QUAR. Good, i'faith! O he has lighted on the wrong pocket.

WINW. He has it! 'fore God, he is a brave fellow: pity he should be

NIGHT. _But O, you vile nation of cut-purses all,
  Relent and repent, and amend and be sound,
  And know that you ought not, by honest men's fall,
  Advance your own fortunes, to die above ground;
     And though you go gay
     In silks, as you may,
  It is not the highway to heaven (as they say).
  Repent then, repent you, for better, for worse,
  And kiss not the gallows for cutting a purse.
  Youth, youth, thou had'st better been starv'd by thy nurse,
  Than live to be hang'd for cutting a purse._

ALL. An excellent ballad! an excellent ballad!

EDG. Friend, let me have the first, let me have the first, I pray you.

[_As Nightingale reaches out the ballad, Edgworth slips the purse into
his hand._

COKES. Pardon me, sir; first come first serv'd; and I'll buy the whole
bundle too.

WINW. That conveyance was better than all, did you see't? he has given
the purse to the ballad-singer.

QUAR. Has he?

EDG. Sir, I cry you mercy, I'll not hinder the poor man's profit; pray
you, mistake me not.

COKES. Sir, I take you for an honest gentleman, if that be mistaking;
I met you to-day afore: ha! humph! O Lord! my purse is gone, my purse,
my purse, my purse!

WASPE. Come do not make a stir, and cry yourself an ass thorough the
Fair afore your time.

COKES. Why, hast thou it, Numps? good Numps, how came you by it, I

WASPE. I pray you seek some other gamester to play the fool with; you
may lose it time enough, for all your Fair wit.

COKES. By this good hand, glove and all, I have lost it already if
thou hast it not; feel else, and mistress Grace's handkerchief too,
out of the t'other pocket.

WASPE. Why, 'tis well, very well, exceeding pretty and well.

EDG. Are you sure you have lost it, sir?

COKES. O Lord! yes; as I am an honest man, I had it but e'en now, at
_Youth, youth._

NIGHT. I hope you suspect not me, sir?

EDG. Thee! that were a jest indeed! dost thou think the gentleman is
foolish? where hadst thou hands, I pray thee? Away, ass, away!

[_Exit Nightingale._

OVER. I shall be beaten again, if I be spied. [_Aside, retiring._

EDG. Sir, I suspect an odd fellow, yonder, is stealing away.

MRS. OVER. Brother, it is the preaching fellow: you shall suspect him.
He was at your t'other purse, you know! [_Seizes Overdo._]--Nay, stay,
sir, and view the work you have done; an you be beneficed at the
gallows, and preach there, thank your own handy-work.

COKES. Sir, you shall take no pride in your preferment, you shall be
silenced quickly.

[_They seize Overdo._

OVER. What do you mean, sweet buds of gentility?

COKES. To have my pennyworths out on you, bud. No less than two purses
a day serve you! I thought you a simple fellow, when my man Numps beat
you in the morning, and pitied you.

MRS. OVER. So did I. I'll be sworn, brother; but now I see he is a
lewd and pernicious enormity, as master Overdo calls him.

OVER. Mine own words turn'd upon me like swords! [_Aside._

COKES. Cannot a man's purse be at quiet for you in the master's
pocket, but you must entice it forth, and debauch it!

[_Overdo is carried off._

WASPE. Sir, sir, keep your debauch, and your fine Bartholomew terms to
yourself, and make as much on 'em as you please. But give me this from
you in the mean time; I beseech you, see if I can look to this.

COKES. Why, Numps?

WASPE. Why! because you are an ass, sir, there's a reason the shortest
way, an you will needs have it: now you have got the trick of losing,
you'd lose your breech an 'twere loose. I know you, sir, come, deliver
[_takes the box from him_], you'll go and crack the vermin you breed
now, will you? 'tis very fine; will you have the truth on't? they are
such retchless flies as you are, that blow cut-purses abroad in every
corner; your foolish having of money makes them. An there were no
wiser than I, sir, the trade should lie open for you, sir, it should,
i'faith, sir. I would teach your wit to come to your head, sir, as
well as your land to come into your hand, I assure you, sir.

WINW. Alack, good Numps!

WASPE. Nay, gentlemen, never pity me. I am not worth it: Lord send me
at home once to Harrow o' the Hill, again, if I travel any more, call
me Coriat with all my heart.

[_Exeunt Waspe, Cokes, and Mrs. Overdo, followed by Edgworth._

QUAR. [_stops Edgworth._] Stay, sir, I must have a word with you in
private. Do you hear?

EDG. With me, sir! what's your pleasure, good sir?

QUAR. Do not deny it, you are a cut-purse, sir, this gentleman here
and I saw you: nor do we mean to detect you, though we can
sufficiently inform ourselves toward the danger of concealing you; but
you must do us a piece of service.

EDG. Good gentlemen, do not undo me; I am a civil young man, and but a
beginner indeed.

QUAR. Sir, your beginning shall bring on your ending for us: we are no
catchpoles nor constables. That you are to undertake is this: you saw
the old fellow with the black box here?

EDG. The little old governor, sir?

QUAR. That same: I see you have flown him to a mark already. I would
have you get away that box from him, and bring it us.

EDG. Wou'd you have the box and all, sir, or only that that is in't?
I'll get you that, and leave him the box to play with still, which
will be the harder of the two, because I would gain your worship's
good opinion of me.

WINW. He says well, 'tis the greater mastery, and 'twill make the more
sport when 'tis mist.

EDG. Ay, and 'twill be the longer a missing, to draw on the sport.

QUAR. But look you do it now, sirrah, and keep your word, or--

EDG. Sir, if ever I break my word with a gentleman, may I never read
word at my need. Where shall I find you?

QUAR. Somewhere i' the Fair, hereabouts: dispatch it quickly. [_Exit
Edgworth._] I would fain see the careful fool deluded! Of all beasts,
I love the serious ass; he that takes pains to be one, and plays the
fool with the greatest diligence that can be.

GRACE. Then you would not choose, sir, but love my guardian, justice
Overdo, who is answerable to that description in every hair of him.

QUAR. So I have heard. But how came you, mistress Wellborn, to be his
ward, or have relation to him at first?

GRACE. Faith, through a common calamity, he bought me, sir; and now he
will marry me to his wife's brother, this wise gentleman that you see;
or else I must pay value o' my land.

QUAR. 'Slid, is there no device of disparagement, or so? talk with
some crafty fellow, some picklock of the law: would I had studied a
year longer in the Inns of court, an't had been but in your case.

WINW. Ay, master Quarlous, are you proffering! [_Aside._

GRACE. You'd bring but little aid, sir.

WINW. I'll look to you, in faith, gamester. [_Aside._]--An unfortunate
foolish tribe you are fallen into, lady, I wonder you can endure them.

GRACE. Sir, they that cannot work their fetters off must wear them.

WINW. You see what care they have on you, to leave you thus.

GRACE. Faith, the same they have of themselves, sir. I cannot greatly
complain, if this were all the plea I had against them.

WINW. 'Tis true: but will you please to withdraw with us a little, and
make them think they have lost you. I hope our manners have been such
hitherto, and our language, as will give you no cause to doubt
yourself in our company.

GRACE. Sir, I will give myself no cause; I am so secure of mine own
manners, as I suspect not yours.

QUAR. Look where John Littlewit comes.

WINW. Away, I'll not be seen by him.

QUAR. No, you were not best, he'd tell his mother, the widow.

WINW. Heart! what do you mean?

QUAR. Cry you mercy, is the wind there? must not the widow be named?


_Enter LITTLEWIT from URSULA'S booth, followed by MRS. LITTLEWIT._

LIT. Do you hear, Win, Win?

MRS. LIT. What say you, John?

LIT. While they are paying the reckoning, Win, I'll tell you a thing,
Win; we shall never see any sights in the Fair, Win, except you long
still, Win: good Win, sweet Win, long to see some hobby-horses, and
some drums, and rattles, and dogs, and fine devices, Win. The bull
with the five legs, Win; and the great hog. Now you have begun with
pig, you may long for any thing, Win, and so for my motion, Win.

MRS. LIT. But we shall not eat of the bull and the hog, John; how
shall I long then?

LIT. O yes, Win: you may long to see, as well as to taste, Win: how
did the pothecary's wife, Win, that longed to see the anatomy, Win? or
the lady, Win, that desired to spit in the great lawyer's mouth, after
an eloquent pleading? I assure you, they longed, Win; good Win, go in,
and long.

[_Exeunt Littlewit and Mrs. Littlewit._

TRASH. I think we are rid of our new customer, brother Leatherhead, we
shall hear no more of him.

LEATH. All the better; let's pack up all and begone, before he find

TRASH. Stay a little, yonder comes a company; it may be we may take
some more money.

_Enter KNOCKEM and BUSY._

KNOCK. Sir, I will take your counsel, and cut my hair, and leave
vapours: I see that tobacco, and bottle-ale, and pig, and Whit, and
very Ursla herself, is all vanity.

BUSY. Only pig was not comprehended in my admonition, the rest were:
for long hair, it is an ensign of pride, a banner; and the world is
full of those banners, very full of banners. And bottle-ale is a drink
of Satan's, a diet-drink of Satan's, devised to puff us up, and make
us swell in this latter age of vanity; as the smoke of tobacco, to
keep us in mist and error: but the fleshly woman, which you call
Ursla, is above all to be avoided, having the marks upon her of the
three enemies of man; the world, as being in the Fair; the devil, as
being in the fire; and the flesh, as being herself.


PURE. Brother Zeal-of-the-land! what shall we do? my daughter
Win-the-fight is fallen into her fit of longing again.

BUSY. For more pig! there is no more, is there?

PURE. To see some sights in the Fair.

BUSY. Sister, let her fly the impurity of the place swiftly, lest she
partake of the pitch thereof. Thou art the seat of the beast, O
Smithfield, and I will leave thee! Idolatry peepeth out on every side
of thee.

[_Goes forward._

KNOCK. An excellent right hypocrite! now his belly is full, he falls a
railing and kicking, the jade. A very good vapour! I'll in, and joy
Ursla, with telling how her pig works; two and a half he eat to his
share; and he has drunk a pailful. He eats with his eyes, as well as
his teeth.


LEATH. What do you lack, gentlemen? what is't you buy? rattles, drums,

BUSY. Peace, with thy apocryphal wares, thou profane publican; thy
bells, thy dragons, and thy Tobie's dogs. Thy hobby-horse is an idol,
a very idol, a fierce and rank idol; and thou, the Nebuchadnezzar, the
proud Nebuchadnezzar of the Fair, that sett'st it up, for children to
fall down to, and worship.

LEATH. Cry you mercy, sir; will you buy a fiddle to fill up your

_Re-enter LITTLEWIT and his Wife._

LIT. Look, Win, do, look a God's name, and save your longing. Here be
fine sights.

PURE. Ay, child, so you hate them, as our brother Zeal does, you may
look on them.

LEATH. Or what do you say to a drum, sir?

BUSY. It is the broken belly of the beast, and thy bellows there are
his lungs, and these pipes are his throat, those feathers are of his
tail, and thy rattles the gnashing of his teeth.

TRASH. And what's my gingerbread, I pray you?

BUSY. The provender that pricks him up. Hence with thy basket of
popery, thy nest of images, and whole legend of ginger-work.

LEATH. Sir, if you be not quiet the quicklier, I'll have you clapp'd
fairly by the heels, for disturbing the Fair.

BUSY. The sin of the Fair provokes me, I cannot be silent.

PURE. Good brother Zeal!

LEATH. Sir, I'll make you silent, believe it.

LIT. I'd give a shilling you could, i'faith, friend. [_Aside to

LEATH. Sir, give me your shilling, I'll give you my shop, if I do not;
and I'll leave it in pawn with you in the mean time.

LIT. A match, i'faith; but do it quickly then.

[_Exit Leatherhead._

BUSY. [_to Mrs. Purecraft._] Hinder me not, woman I was moved in
spirit, to be here this day, in this Fair, this wicked and foul Fair;
and fitter may it be called a Foul than a Fair; to protest against the
abuses of it, the foul abuses of it, in regard of the afflicted
saints, that are troubled, very much troubled, exceedingly troubled,
with the opening of the merchandise of Babylon again, and the peeping
of popery upon the stalls here, here, in the high places. See you not
Goldylocks, the purple strumpet there, in her yellow gown and green
sleeves? the profane pipes, the tinkling timbrels? a shop of relicks!

[_Attempts to seize the toys._

LIT. Pray you forbear, I am put in trust with them.

BUSY. And this idolatrous grove of images, this flasket of idols,
which I will pull down--

[_Overthrows the gingerbread basket._

TRASH. O my ware, my ware! God bless it!

BUSY. In my zeal and glory to be thus exercised.

_Re-enter LEATHERHEAD, with BRISTLE, HAGGISE, and other Officers._

LEATH. Here he is, pray you lay hold on his zeal; we cannot sell a
whistle for him in tune. Stop his noise first.

BUSY. Thou canst not; 'tis a sanctified noise: I will make a loud and
most strong noise, till I have daunted the profane enemy. And for this

LEATH. Sir, here's no man afraid of you, or your cause. You shall
swear it in the stocks, sir.

BUSY. I will thrust myself into the stocks, upon the pikes of the

[_They seize him._

LEATH. Carry him away.

PURE. What do you mean, wicked men?

BUSY. Let them alone, I fear them not.

[_Exeunt Officers with Busy, followed by Dame Purecraft._

LIT. Was not this shilling well ventured, Win, for our liberty? now we
may go play, and see over the Fair, where we list ourselves: my mother
is gone after him, and let her e'en go, and lose us.

MRS. LIT. Yes, John; but I know not what to do.

LIT. For what, Win?

MRS. LIT. For a thing I am ashamed to tell you, i'faith; and 'tis too
far to go home.

LIT. I pray thee be not ashamed, Win. Come, i'faith, thou shalt not be
ashamed: is it any thing about the hobby-horse man? an't be, speak

MRS. LIT. Hang him, base Bobchin, I scorn him; no, I have very great
what sha' call 'um, John.

[_Whispers him._

LIT. O, is that all, Win? we'll go back to captain Jordan, to the
pig-woman's, Win, he'll help us, or she, with a dripping-pan, or an
old kettle, or something. The poor greasy soul loves you, Win; and
after we'll visit the Fair all over, Win, and see my puppet-play, Win;
you know it's a fine matter, Win.

[_Exeunt Littlewit and Mrs. Littlewit._

LEATH. Let's away; I counsell'd you to pack up afore, Joan.

TRASH. A pox of his Bedlam purity! He has spoiled half my ware; but
the best is, we lose nothing if we miss our first merchant.

LEATH. It shall be hard for him to find or know us, when we are
translated, Joan.



SCENE I.--_The Fair._

Booths, Stalls, a pair of Stocks, etc.

_Enter COKES, BRISTLE, HAGGISE, and POCHER, with OVERDO, followed by

TRO. My masters, I do make no doubt, but you are officers.

BRI. What then, sir?

TRO. And the king's loving and obedient subjects.

BRI. Obedient, friend! take heed what you speak, I advise you; Oliver
Bristle advises you. His loving subjects, we grant you; but not his
obedient, at this time, by your leave; we know ourselves a little
better than so; we are to command, sir, and such as you are to be
obedient. Here's one of his obedient subjects going to the stocks; and
we'll make you such another, if you talk.

TRO. You are all wise enough in your places, I know.

BRI. If you know it, sir, why do you bring it in question?

TRO. I question nothing, pardon me. I do only hope you have warrant
for what you do, and so quit you, and so multiply you.


HAG. What is he?--Bring him up to the stocks there. Why bring you him
not up?

[_Overdo is brought forward._

_Re-enter TROUBLEALL._

TRO. If you have justice Overdo's warrant, 'tis well; you are safe:
that is the warrant of warrants. I'll not give this button for any
man's warrant else.

BRI. Like enough, sir; but let me tell you, an you play away your
buttons thus, you will want them ere night, for any store I see about
you; you might keep them, and save pins, I wuss.

[_Exit Troubleall._

OVER. What should he be, that doth so esteem and advance my warrant?
he seems a sober and discreet person: It is a comfort to a good
conscience to be followed with a good fame in his sufferings. The
world will have a pretty taste by this, how I can bear adversity; and
it will beget a kind of reverence towards me hereafter, even from mine
enemies, when they shall see, I carry my calamity nobly, and that it
doth neither break me, nor bend me. [_Aside._

HAG. Come, sir, here's a place for you to preach in. Will you put in
your leg?

OVER. That I will, cheerfully.

[_They put him in the stocks._

BRI. O' my conscience, a seminary! he kisses the stocks.

COKES. Well, my masters, I'll leave him with you; now I see him
bestowed, I'll go look for my goods, and Numps.

HAG. You may, sir, I warrant you; where's the t'other bawler? fetch
him too, you shall find them both fast enough.

[_Exit Cokes._

OVER. In the midst of this tumult, I will yet be the author of mine
own rest, and not minding their fury, sit in the stocks in that calm
as shall be able to trouble a triumph. [_Aside._

_Re-enter TROUBLEALL._

TRO. Do you assure me upon your words? May I undertake for you, if I
be asked the question, that you have this warrant?

HAG. What's this fellow, for God's sake?

TRO. Do but shew me Adam Overdo, and I am satisfied.


BRI. He is a fellow that is distracted, they say; one Troubleall: he
was an officer in the court of Pie-poudres here last year, and put out
of his place by justice Overdo.

OVER. Ha! [_Aside._

BRI. Upon which he took an idle conceit, and is run mad upon't: so
that ever since he will do nothing but by justice Overdo's warrant; he
will not eat a crust, nor drink a little, nor make him in his apparel
ready. His wife, sir-reverence, cannot get him make his water, or
shift his shirt, without his warrant.

OVER. If this be true, this is my greatest disaster. How am I bound to
satisfy this poor man, that is of so good a nature to me, out of his
wits! where there is no room left for dissembling. [_Aside._

_Re-enter TROUBLEALL._

TRO. If you cannot shew me Adam Overdo, I am in doubt of you; I am
afraid you cannot answer it.


HAG. Before me, neighbour Bristle,--and now I think on't
better,--justice Overdo is a very parantory person.

BRI. O, are you advised of that! and a severe justicer, by your leave.

OVER. Do I hear ill o' that side too? [_Aside._

BRI. He will sit as upright on the bench, an you mark him, as a candle
in the socket, and give light to the whole court in every business.

HAG. But he will burn blue, and swell like a boil, God bless us, an he
be angry.

BRI. Ay, and he will be angry too, when he lists, that's more; and
when he is angry, be it right or wrong, he has the law on's side ever;
I mark that too.

OVER. I will be more tender hereafter. I see compassion may become a
justice, though it be a weakness, I confess, and nearer a vice than a
virtue. [_Aside._

HAG. Well, take him out o' the stocks again; we'll go a sure way to
work, we'll have the ace of hearts of our side, if we can.

[_They take Overdo out._

_Enter POCHER, and Officers with BUSY, followed by DAME PURECRAFT._

POCH. Come, bring him away to his fellow there.--Master Busy, we shall
rule your legs, I hope, though we cannot rule your tongue.

BUSY. No, minister of darkness, no; thou canst not rule my tongue; my
tongue it is mine own, and with it I will both knock and mock down
your Bartholomew abominations, till you be made a hissing to the
neighbouring parishes round about.

HAG. Let him alone, we have devised better upon't.

PURE. And shall he not into the stocks then?

BRI. No, mistress, we'll have them both to justice Overdo, and let him
do over 'em as is fitting: then I, and my gossip Haggise, and my
beadle Pocher, are discharged.

PURE. O, I thank you, blessed honest men!

BRI. Nay, never thank us; but thank this madman that comes here! he
put it in our heads.

_Re-enter TROUBLEALL._

PURE. Is he mad? now heaven increase his madness, and bless it, and
thank it.--Sir, your poor handmaid thanks you.

TRO. Have you a warrant? an you have a warrant, shew it.

PURE. Yes, I have a warrant out of the word, to give thanks for
removing any scorn intended to the brethren.

[_Exeunt all but Troubleall._

TRO. It is justice Overdo's warrant that I look for; if you have not
that, keep your word, I'll keep mine. Quit ye, and multiply ye.


EDG. Come away, Nightingale, I pray thee.

TRO. Whither go you? where's your warrant?

EDG. Warrant! for what, sir?

TRO. For what you go about, you know how fit it is; an you have no
warrant, bless you, I'll pray for you, that's all I can do.


EDG. What means he?

NIGHT. A madman that haunts the Fair; do you not know him? It's marvel
he has not more followers after his ragged heels.

EDG. Beshrew him, he startled me: I thought he had known of our plot.
Guilt's a terrible thing. Have you prepared the costard-monger?

NIGHT. Yes, and agreed for his basket of pears; he is at the corner
here, ready. And your prize, he comes down sailing that way all alone,
without his protector; he is rid of him, it seems.

EDG. Ay, I know; I should have followed his protectorship, for a feat
I am to do upon him: but this offered itself so in the way, I could
not let scape: here he comes, whistle; be this sport call'd Dorring
the Dotterel.

_Re-enter COKES._

NIGHT. Wh, wh, wh, wh, etc.


COKES. By this light, I cannot find my gingerbread wife, nor my
hobby-horse man, in all the Fair now, to have my money again: and I do
not know the way out on't, to go home for more. Do you hear, friend,
you that whistle? what tune is that you whistle?

NIGHT. A new tune I am practising, sir.

COKES. Dost thou know where I dwell, I pray thee? nay, on with thy
tune; I have no such haste for an answer: I'll practise with thee.

_Enter COSTARD-MONGER, with a basket of Pears._

COS. Buy any pears, very fine pears, pears fine!

[_Nightingale sets his foot afore him, and he falls with his basket._

COKES. Ods so! a muss, a muss, a muss, a muss!

[_Falls a scrambling for the pears._

COS. Good gentlemen, my ware, my ware; I am a poor man. Good sir, my

NIGHT. Let me hold your sword, sir, it troubles you.

COKES. Do, and my cloke an thou wilt, and my hat too.

EDG. A delicate great boy! methinks he out-scrambles them all. I
cannot persuade myself, but he goes to grammar-school yet, and plays
the truant to-day.

NIGHT. Would he had another purse to cut, Zekiel.

EDG. Purse! a man might cut out his kidneys, I think, and he never
feel 'em, he is so earnest at the sport.

NIGHT. His soul is half way out on's body at the game.

EDG. Away, Nightingale; that way.

[_Nightingale runs off with his sword, cloke, and hat._

COKES. I think I am furnish'd for cather'ne pears, for one under-meal:
Give me my cloke.

COS. Good gentleman, give me my ware.

COKES. Where's the fellow I gave my cloke to? my cloke and my hat; ha!
ods 'lid, is he gone? thieves, thieves! help me to cry, gentlemen.

[_Exit hastily._

EDG. Away, costard-monger, come to us to Ursula's.

[_Exit Costard-Monger._]

Talk of him to have a soul! 'heart, if he have any more than a thing
given him instead of salt, only to keep him from stinking, I'll be
hang'd afore my time, presently: where should it be, trow? in his
blood? he has not so much toward it in his whole body as will maintain
a good flea! and if he take this course, he will not have so much land
left as to rear a calf, within this twelvemonth. Was there ever green
plover so pull'd! that his little overseer had been here now, and been
but tall enough to see him steal pears, in exchange for his beaver-hat
and his cloke thus! I must go find him out next, for his black box,
and his patent, it seems, he has of his place; which I think the
gentleman would have a reversion of, that spoke to me for it so


_Re-enter COKES._

COKES. Would I might lose my doublet, and hose, too, as I am an honest
man, and never stir, if I think there be any thing but thieving and
cozening in this whole Fair. Bartholomew Fair, quoth he! an ever any
Bartholomew had that luck in't that I have had, I'll be martyr'd for
him, and in Smithfield too. I have paid for my pears, a rot on 'em!
I'll keep them no longer; [_throws away his pears._] you were
choke-pears to me: I had been better have gone to mum-chance for you,
I wuss. Methinks the Fair should not have used me thus, an 'twere but
for my name's-sake; I would not have used a dog o' the name so. O,
Numps will triumph now!--


Friend, do you know who I am, or where I lie? I do not myself, I'll be
sworn. Do but carry me home, and I'll please thee; I have money enough
there. I have lost myself, and my cloke, and my hat, and my fine
sword, and my sister, and Numps, and mistress Grace, a gentlewoman
that I should have married, and a cut-work handkerchief she gave me,
and two purses, to-day; and my bargain of hobby-horses and
gingerbread, which grieves me worst of all.

TRO. By whose warrant, sir, have you done all this?

COKES. Warrant! thou art a wise fellow indeed: as if a man need a
warrant to lose any thing with.

TRO. Yes, justice Overdo's warrant, a man may get and lose with, I'll
stand to't.

COKES. Justice Overdo! dost thou know him? I lie there, he is my
brother-in-law, he married my sister: pray thee shew me the way; dost
thou know the house?

TRO. Sir, shew me your warrant: I know nothing without a warrant,
pardon me.

COKES. Why, I warrant thee; come along: thou shalt see I have wrought
pillows there, and cambric sheets, and sweet bags too. Pray thee guide
me to the house.

TRO. Sir, I'll tell you; go you thither yourself first alone, tell
your worshipful brother your mind, and but bring me three lines of his
hand, or his clerk's, with Adam Overdo underneath, (here I'll stay
you,) I'll obey you, and I'll guide you presently.

COKES. 'Slid, this is an ass, I have found him: pox upon me, what do I
talking to such a dull fool! farewell! you are a very coxcomb, do you

TRO. I think I am; if justice Overdo sign to it, I am, and so we are
all: he'll quit us all, multiply us all.


SCENE II.--_Another part of the Fair._

_Enter GRACE, QUARLOUS, and WINWIFE, with their swords drawn._

GRACE. Gentlemen, this is no way that you take; you do but breed one
another trouble and offence, and give me no contentment at all. I am
not she that affects to be quarrell'd for, or have my name or fortune
made the question of men's swords.

QUAR. 'Sblood, we love you.

GRACE. If you both love me, as you pretend, your own reason will tell
you, but one can enjoy me: and to that point there leads a directer
line, than by my infamy, which must follow, if you fight. 'Tis true, I
have profest it to you ingenuously, that rather than to be yoked with
this bridegroom is appointed me, I would take up any husband almost
upon any trust; though subtlety would say to me, I know, he is a fool,
and has an estate, and I might govern him, and enjoy a friend beside:
but these are not my aims; I must have a husband I must love, or I
cannot live with him. I shall ill make one of these politic wives.

WINW. Why, if you can like either of us, lady, say, which is he, and
the other shall swear instantly to desist.

QUAR. Content, I accord to that willingly.

GRACE. Sure you think me a woman of an extreme levity, gentlemen, or a
strange fancy, that, meeting you by chance in such a place as this,
both at one instant, and not yet of two hours' acquaintance, neither
of you deserving afore the other of me, I should so forsake my modesty
(though I might affect one more particularly) as to say, this is he,
and name him.

QUAR. Why, wherefore should you not? what should hinder you?

GRACE. If you would not give it to my modesty, allow it yet to my wit;
give me so much of woman and cunning, as not to betray myself
impertinently. How can I judge of you, so far as to a choice, without
knowing you more? You are both equal, and alike to me yet, and so
indifferently affected by me, as each of you might be the man, if the
other were away: for you are reasonable creatures, you have
understanding and discourse; and if fate send me an understanding
husband, I have no fear at all but mine own manners shall make him a
good one.

QUAR. Would I were put forth to making for you then.

GRACE. It may be you are, you know not what is toward you: will you
consent to a motion of mine, gentlemen?

WINW. Whatever it be, we'll presume reasonableness, coming from you.

QUAR. And fitness too.

GRACE. I saw one of you buy a pair of tables, e'en now.

WINW. Yes, here they be, and maiden ones too, unwritten in.

GRACE. The fitter for what they may be employed in. You shall write
either of you here a word or a name, what you like best, but of two or
three syllables at most; and the next person that comes this way,
because Destiny has a high hand in business of this nature, I'll
demand which of the two words he or she doth approve, and, according
to that sentence, fix my resolution and affection without change.

QUAR. Agreed; my word is conceived already.

WINW. And mine shall not be long creating after.

GRACE. But you shall promise, gentlemen, not to be curious to know
which of you it is, taken; but give me leave to conceal that, till you
have brought me either home, or where I may safely tender myself.

WINW. Why, that's but equal.

QUAR. We are pleased.

GRACE. Because I will bind both your endeavours to work together
friendly and jointly each to the other's fortune, and have myself
fitted with some means, to make him that is forsaken a part of amends.

QUAR. These conditions are very courteous. Well, my word is out of the
Arcadia, then; _Argalus._

WINW. And mine out of the Play _Palemon._

[_They write._


TRO. Have you any warrant for this, gentlemen?


TRO. There must be a warrant had, believe it.

WINW. For what?

TRO. For whatsoever it is, any thing indeed, no matter what.

QUAR. 'Slight, here's a fine ragged prophet dropt down i' the nick!

TRO. Heaven quit you, gentlemen!

QUAR. Nay, stay a little: good lady, put him to the question.

GRACE. You are content then?

WINW. QUAR. Yes, yes.

GRACE. Sir, here are two names written--

TRO. Is justice Overdo one?

GRACE. How, sir! I pray you read them to yourself; it is for a wager
between these gentlemen; and with a stroke, or any difference, mark
which you approve best.

TRO. They may be both worshipful names for aught I know, mistress; but
Adam Overdo had been worth three of them, I assure you in this place,
that's in plain English.

GRACE. This man amazes me: I pray you like one of them, sir.

TRO. [_marks the book._] I do like him there, that has the best
warrant, mistress, to save your longing, and (multiply him) it may be
this. But I am still for justice Overdo, that's my conscience; and
quit you.

WINW. Is it done, lady?

GRACE. Ay, and strangely, as ever I saw: what fellow is this, trow?

QUAR. No matter what, a fortune-teller we have made him; which is it,
which is it?

GRACE. Nay, did you not promise not to inquire?


QUAR. 'Slid, I forgot that, pray you pardon me.--Look, here's our
Mercury come; the license arrives in the finest time too! 'tis but
scraping out Cokes his name, and 'tis done.

WINW. How now, lime-twig, hast thou touch'd?

EDG. Not yet, sir; except you would go with me and see it, it is not
worth speaking on. The act is nothing without a witness. Yonder he is,
your man with the box, fallen into the finest company, and so
transported with vapours! they have got in a northern clothier, and
one Puppy, a western man, that's come to wrestle before my lord mayor
anon, and captain Whit, and one Val. Cutting, that helps captain
Jordan to roar, a circling boy; with whom your Numps is so taken, that
you may strip him of his clothes, if you will. I'll undertake to geld
him for you, if you had but a surgeon ready to sear him. And mistress
Justice there, is the goodest woman! she does so love them all over in
terms of justice and the style of authority, with her hood upright
that--I beseech you come away, gentlemen, and see't.

QUAR. 'Slight, I would not lose it for the Fair; what will you do,

WINW. Why, stay hereabout for you: mistress Wellborn must not be seen.

QUAR. Do so, and find out a priest in the mean time; I'll bring the
license.--Lead, which way is't?

EDG. Here, sir, you are on the back o' the booth already; you may hear
the noise.


SCENE III.--_Another part of the Fair._

URSULA'S Booth as before.

discovered, all in a state of intoxication._

KNOCK. Whit, bid Val. Cutting continue the vapours for a lift, Whit,
for a lift. [_Aside, to Whit._

NOR. I'll ne mare, I'll ne mare; the eale's too meeghty.

KNOCK. How now! my galloway nag the staggers, ha! Whit, give him a
slit in the forehead. Chear up, man; a needle and thread to stitch his
ears. I'd cure him now, an I had it, with a little butter and garlick,
long pepper and grains. Where's my horn? I'll give him a mash
presently, shall take away this dizziness.

PUP. Why, where are you, zurs? do you vlinch, and leave us in the zuds

NOR. I'll ne mare, I is e'en as vull as a paiper's bag, by my troth,

PUP. Do my northern cloth zhrink i' the wetting, ha?

KNOCK. Why, well said, old flea-bitten; thou'lt never tire I see.

[_They fall to their vapours again._

CUT. No, sir, but he may tire if it please him.

WHIT. Who told dee sho, that he vuld never teer, man?

CUT. No matter who told him so, so long as he knows.

KNOCK. Nay, I know nothing, sir, pardon me there.

_Enter behind, EDGWORTH with QUARLOUS._

EDG. They are at it still, sir; this they call vapours.

WHIT. He shall not pardon dee, captain: dou shalt not be pardoned.
Pre'dee, shweet-heart, do not pardon him.

CUT. 'Slight, I'll pardon him, an I list, whosoever says nay to't.

QUAR. Where's Numps? I miss him.

WASPE. Why, I say nay to't.

QUAR. O, there he is.

KNOCK. To what do you say nay, sir?

[_Here they continue their game of vapours, which is nonsense. Every
man to oppose the last man that spoke, whether it concern'd him, or

WASPE. To any thing, whatsoever it is, so long as I do not like it.

WHIT. Pardon me, little man, dou musht like it a little.

CUT. No, he must not like it at all, sir: there you are i' the wrong.

WHIT. I tink I bee; he musht not like it indeed.

CUT. Nay, then he both must and will like it, sir, for all you.

KNOCK. If he have reason, he may like it, sir.

WHIT. By no meensh, captain, upon reason, he may like nothing upon

WASPE. I have no reason, nor I will hear of no reason, nor I will look
for no reason, and he is an ass that either knows any, or looks for't
from me.

CUT. Yes, in some sense you may have reason, sir.

WASPE. Ay, in some sense, I care not if I grant you.

WHIT. Pardon me, thou ougsht to grant him nothing in no shensh, if dou
do love dyshelf, angry man.

WASPE. Why then, I do grant him nothing; and I have no sense.

CUT. 'Tis true, thou hast no sense indeed.

WASPE. 'Slid, but I have sense, now I think on't better, and I will
grant him any thing, do you see.

KNOCK. He is in the right, and does utter a sufficient vapour.

CUT. Nay, it is no sufficient vapour neither, I deny that.

KNOCK. Then it is a sweet vapour.

CUT. It may be a sweet vapour.

WASPE. Nay, it is no sweet vapour neither, sir, it stinks, and I'll
stand to it.

WHIT. Yes, I tink it dosh shtink, captain: all vapour dosh shtink.

WASPE. Nay, then it does not stink, sir, and it shall not stink.

CUT. By your leave it may, sir.

WASPE. Ay, by my leave it may stink, I know that.

WHIT. Pardon me, thou knowesht nothing, it cannot by thy leave, angry

WASPE. How can it not?

KNOCK. Nay, never question him, for he is in the right.

WHIT. Yesh, I am in de right, I confesh it, so ish de little man too.

WASPE. I'll have nothing confest that concerns me. I am not in the
right, nor never was in the right, nor never will be in the right,
while I am in my right mind.

CUT. Mind! why, here's no man minds you, sir, nor any thing else.

[_They drink again._

PUP. Vriend, will you mind this that we do?

[_Offering Northern the cup._

QUAR. Call you this vapours! this is such belching of quarrel as I
never heard. Will you mind your business, sir?

EDG. You shall see, sir.

[_Goes up to Waspe._

NOR. I'll ne mare, my waimb warkes too mickle with this auready.

EDG. Will you take that, master Waspe, that nobody should mind you?

WASPE. Why, what have you to do? is't any matter to you?

EDG. No, but methinks you should not be unminded, though.

WASPE. Nor I wu' not be, now I think on't. Do you hear, new
acquaintance? does no man mind me, say you?

CUT. Yes, sir, every man here minds you, but how?

WASPE. Nay, I care as little how as you do; that was not my question.

WHIT. No, noting was ty question, tou art a learned man, and I am a
valiant man, i'faith la, tou shalt speak for me, and I will fight for

KNOCK. Fight for him, Whit! a gross vapour, he can fight for himself.

WASPE. It may be I can, but it may be I wu' not, how then?

CUT. Why then you may choose.

WASPE. Why, then I'll choose whether I choose or no.

KNOCK. I think you may, and 'tis true; and I allow it for a resolute

WASPE. Nay then, I do think you do not think, and it is no resolute

CUT. Yes, in some sort he may allow you.

KNOCK. In no sort, sir, pardon me, I can allow him nothing. You
mistake the vapour.

WASPE. He mistakes nothing, sir, in no sort.

WHIT. Yes I pre dee now, let him mistake.

WASPE. A turd in your teeth, never pre dee me, for I will have nothing

KNOCK. Turd! ha, turd? a noisome vapour: strike, Whit. [_Aside to

[_They fall together by the ears, while Edgworth steals the license
out of the box, and exit._

MRS. OVER. Why, gentlemen, why, gentlemen, I charge you upon my
authority, conserve the peace. In the king's name, and my husband's,
put up your weapons, I shall be driven to commit you myself, else.

QUAR. Ha, ha, ha!

WASPE. Why do you laugh, sir?

QUAR. Sir, you'll allow me my christian liberty; I may laugh, I hope.

CUT. In some sort you may, and in some sort you may not, sir.

KNOCK. Nay, in some sort, sir, he may neither laugh nor hope in this

WASPE. Yes, then he may both laugh and hope in any sort, an't please

QUAR. Faith, and I will then, for it doth please me exceedingly.

WASPE. No exceedingly neither, sir.

KNOCK. No, that vapour is too lofty.

QUAR. Gentlemen, I do not play well at your game of vapours, I am not
very good at it, but--

CUT. [_draws a circle on the ground._] Do you hear, sir? I would speak
with you in circle.

QUAR. In circle, sir! what would you with me in circle?

CUT. Can you lend me a piece, a Jacobus, in circle?

QUAR. 'Slid, your circle will prove more costly than your vapours,
then. Sir, no, I lend you none.

CUT. Your beard's not well turn'd up, sir.

QUAR. How, rascal! are you playing with my beard? I'll break circle
with you.

[_They all draw and fight._

PUP. NOR. Gentlemen, gentlemen!

KNOCK. [_aside to Whit._] Gather up, Whit, gather up, Whit, good

[_Exit, while Whit takes up the swords, clokes, etc., and conceals

MRS. OVER. What mean you? are you rebels, gentlemen? shall I send out
a serjeant at arms, or a writ of rebellion, against you? I'll commit
you upon my woman-hood, for a riot, upon my justice-hood, if you

[_Exeunt Quarlous and Cutting._

WASPE. Upon my justice-hood! marry shite o' your hood: you'll commit!
spoke like a true justice of peace's wife indeed, and a fine female
lawyer! turd in your teeth for a fee, now.

MRS. OVER. Why, Numps, in master Overdo's name, I charge you.

WASPE. Good mistress Underdo, hold your tongue.

MRS. OVER. Alas, poor Numps!

WASPE. Alas! and why _alas_ from you, I beseech you? or why _poor_
Numps, goody Rich? Am I come to be pitied by your tuft-taffata now?
Why, mistress, I knew Adam the clerk, your husband, when he was Adam
Scrivener, and writ for two-pence a sheet, as high as he bears his
head now, or you your hood, dame.--

_Enter BRISTLE and other Watchmen._

What are you, sir?

BRI. We be men, and no infidels; what is the matter here, and the
noises, can you tell?

WASPE. Heart, what ha' you to do? cannot a man quarrel in quietness,
but he must be put out on't by you! what are you?

BRI. Why, we be his majesty's watch, sir.

WASPE. Watch! 'sblood, you are a sweet watch indeed. A body would
think, an you watch'd well a nights, you should be contented to sleep
at this time a day. Get you to your fleas and your flock-beds, you
rogues, your kennels, and lie down close.

BRI. Down! yes, we will down, I warrant you: down with him, in his
majesty's name, down, down with him, and carry him away to the

[_Some of the Watch seize Waspe, and carry him off._

MRS. OVER. I thank you, honest friends, in the behalf o' the crown,
and the peace, and in master Overdo's name, for suppressing

WHIT. Stay, Bristle, here ish anoder brash of drunkards, but very
quiet, special drunkards, will pay de five shillings very well.
[_Points to Northern and Puppy, drunk, and asleep, on the bench._]
Take 'em to de, in de graish o' God: one of hem do's change cloth for
ale in the Fair, here; te toder ish a strong man, a mighty man, my
lord mayor's man, and a wrastler. He has wrashled so long with the
bottle here, that the man with the beard hash almosht streek up hish

BRI. 'Slid, the clerk o' the market has been to cry him all the Fair
over here, for my lord's service.

WHIT. Tere he ish, pre de taik him hensh, and make ty best on him.
[_Exeunt Bristle and the rest of the Watch with Northern and
Puppy._]--How now, woman o' shilk, vat ailsh ty shweet faish? art tou

MRS. OVER. A little distempered with these enormities. Shall I entreat
a courtesy of you, captain?

WHIT. Entreat a hundred, velvet voman, I vill do it, shpeak out.

MRS. OVER. I cannot with modesty speak it out, but--

[_Whispers him._

WHIT. I vill do it, and more and more, for de. What Ursla, an't be
bitch, an't be bawd, an't be!

_Enter URSULA._

URS. How now, rascal! what roar you for, old pimp?

WHIT. Here, put up de clokes, Ursh; de purchase. Pre de now, shweet
Ursh, help dis good brave voman to a jordan, an't be.

URS. 'Slid call your captain Jordan to her, can you not?

WHIT. Nay, pre de leave dy consheits, and bring the velvet woman to

URS. I bring her! hang her: heart, must I find a common pot for every
punk in your purlieus?

WHIT. O good voordsh, Ursh, it ish a guest o' velvet, i'fait la.

URS. Let her sell her hood, and buy a spunge, with a pox to her! my
vessel is employed, sir. I have but one, and 'tis the bottom of an old
bottle. An honest proctor and his wife are at it within; if she'll
stay her time, so.


WHIT. As soon as tou cansht, shweet Ursh. Of a valiant man I tink I am
te patientsh man i' the world, or in all Smithfield.

_Re-enter KNOCKEM._

KNOCK. How now, Whit! close vapours, stealing your leaps! covering in
corners, ha!

WHIT. No, fait, captain, dough tou beesht a vishe man, dy vit is a
mile hence now. I vas procuring a shmall courtesie for a woman of
fashion here.

MRS. OVER. Yes, captain, though I am a justice of peace's wife, I do
love men of war, and the sons of the sword, when they come before my

KNOCK. Say'st thou so, filly? thou shalt have a leap presently, I'll
horse thee myself, else.

URS. [_within._] Come, will you bring her in now, and let her take her

WHIT. Gramercy, good Ursh, I tank de.

MRS. OVER. Master Overdo shall thank her.


_Re-enter URSULA, followed by LITTLEWIT, and MRS. LITTLEWIT._

LIT. Good ga'mere Urse, Win and I are exceedingly beholden to you, and
to captain Jordan, and captain Whit.--Win, I'll be bold to leave you,
in this good company, Win; for half an hour or so, Win; while I go and
see how my matter goes forward, and if the puppets be perfect; and
then I'll come and fetch you, Win.

MRS. LIT. Will you leave me alone with two men, John?

LIT. Ay, they are honest gentlemen, Win, captain Jordan and captain
Whit; they'll use you very civilly, Win. God be wi' you, Win.


URS. What, is her husband gone?

KNOCK. On his false gallop, Urse, away.

URS. An you be right Bartholomew birds, now show yourselves so: we are
undone for want of fowl in the Fair, here. Here will be Zekiel
Edgworth, and three or four gallants with him at night, and I have
neither plover nor quail for them: persuade this between you two, to
become a bird o' the game, while I work the velvet woman within, as
you call her.

KNOCK. I conceive thee, Urse: go thy ways. [_Exit Ursula._]--Dost thou
hear, Whit? is't not pity, my delicate dark chestnut here, with the
fine lean head, large forehead, round eyes, even mouth, sharp ears,
long neck, thin crest, close withers, plain back, deep sides, short
fillets, and full flanks; with a round belly, a plump buttock, large
thighs, knit knees, strait legs, short pasterns, smooth hoofs, and
short heels, should lead a dull honest woman's life, that might live
the life of a lady?

WHIT. Yes, by my fait and trot it is, captain; de honest woman's life
is a scurvy dull life indeed, la.

MRS. LIT. How, sir, is an honest woman's life a scurvy life?

WHIT. Yes fait, shweet-heart, believe him, de leef of a bond-woman!
but if dou vilt hearken to me, I vill make tee a free woman and a
lady; dou shalt live like a lady, as te captain saish.

KNOCK. Ay, and be honest too sometimes; have her wires and her tires,
her green gowns and velvet petticoats.

WHIT. Ay, and ride to Ware and Rumford in dy coash, shee de players,
be in love vit 'em: sup vit gallantsh, be drunk, and cost de noting.

KNOCK. Brave vapours!

WHIT. And lie by twenty on 'em, if dou pleash, shweet-heart.

MRS. LIT. What, and be honest still! that were fine sport.

WHIT. Tish common, shweet-heart, tou may'st do it by my hand: it shall
be justified to thy husband's faish, now: tou shalt be as honesht as
the skin between his hornsh, la.

KNOCK. Yes, and wear a dressing, top and top-gallant, to compare with
e'er a husband on 'em all, for a foretop: it is the vapour of spirit
in the wife to cuckold now a days, as it is the vapour of fashion in
the husband not to suspect. Your prying cat-eyed citizen is an
abominable vapour.

MRS. LIT. Lord, what a fool have I been!

WHIT. Mend then, and do every ting like a lady hereafter; never know
ty husband from another man.

KNOCK. Nor any one man from another, but in the dark.

WHIT. Ay, and then it ish no disgrash to know any man.

URS. [_within._] Help, help here!

KNOCK. How now? what vapour's there?

_Re-enter URSULA._

URS. O, you are a sweet ranger, and look well to your walks! Yonder is
your punk of Turnbull, ramping Alice, has fallen upon the poor
gentlewoman within, and pull'd her hood over her ears, and her hair
through it.

_Enter ALICE, beating and driving in MRS. OVERDO._

MRS. OVER. Help, help, in the king's name!

ALICE. A mischief on you, they are such as you are that undo us and
take our trade from us, with your tuft-taffata haunches.

KNOCK. How now, Alice!

ALICE. The poor common whores can have no traffic for the privy rich
ones; your caps and hoods of velvet call away our customers, and lick
the fat from us.

URS. Peace, you foul ramping jade, you--

ALICE. Od's foot, you bawd in grease, are you talking?

KNOCK. Why, Alice, I say.

ALICE. Thou sow of Smithfield, thou!

URS. Thou tripe of Turnbull!

KNOCK. Cat-a-mountain vapours, ha!

URS. You know where you were taw'd lately; both lash'd and slash'd you
were in Bridewell.

ALICE. Ay, by the same token you rid that week, and broke out the
bottom of the cart, night-tub.

KNOCK. Why, lion face, ha! do you know who I am? shall I tear ruff,
slit waistcoat, make rags of petticoat, ha! go to, vanish for fear of
vapours. Whit, a kick, Whit, in the parting vapour. [_They kick out
Alice._] Come, brave woman, take a good heart, thou shalt be a lady

WHIT. Yes fait, dey shall all both be ladies, and write madam: I vill
do't myself for dem. Do is the word, and D is the middle letter of
madam, D D, put 'em together, and make deeds, without which all words
are alike, la.

KNOCK. 'Tis true: Ursula, take them in, open thy wardrobe, and fit
them to their calling. Green gowns, crimson petticoats, green women,
my lord mayor's green women! guests o' the game, true bred. I'll
provide you a coach to take the air in.

MRS. LIT. But do you think you can get one?

KNOCK. O, they are common as wheelbarrows where there are great
dunghills. Every pettifogger's wife has 'em; for first he buys a coach
that he may marry, and then he marries that he may be made cuckold
in't: for if their wives ride not to their cuckolding, they do them no
credit. [_Exeunt Ursula, Mrs. Littlewit, and Mrs. Overdo._]--_Hide,
and be hidden, ride and be ridden,_ says the vapour of experience.


TRO. By what warrant does it say so?

KNOCK. Ha, mad child o' the Pie-poudres! art thou there? fill us a
fresh can, Urse, we may drink together.

TRO. I may not drink without a warrant, captain.

KNOCK. 'Slood, thou'lt not stale without a warrant shortly. Whit, give
me pen, ink, and paper, I'll draw him a warrant presently.

TRO. It must be justice Overdo's.

KNOCK. I know, man; fetch the drink, Whit.

WHIT. I pre dee now, be very brief, captain, for de new ladies stay
for dee.

[_Exit, and re-enters with a can._

KNOCK. O, as brief as can be, here 'tis already. [_Gives Troubleall a
paper._] Adam Overdo.

TRO. Why now I'll pledge you, captain.

KNOCK. Drink it off, I'll come to thee anon again.


SCENE IV.--_The back of URSULA'S Booth._

OVERDO in the stocks. People, etc.

_Enter QUARLOUS with the license, and EDGWORTH._

QUAR. Well, sir, you are now discharged; beware of being spied

EDG. Sir, will it please you, enter in here at Ursula's, and take part
of a silken gown, a velvet petticoat, or a wrought smock; I am
promised such, and I can spare a gentleman a moiety.

QUAR. Keep it for your companions in beastliness, I am none of them,
sir. If I had not already forgiven you a greater trespass, or thought
you yet worth my beating, I would instruct your manners, to whom you
made your offers. But go your ways, talk not to me, the hangman is
only fit to discourse with you; the hand of beadle is too merciful a
punishment for your trade of life. [_Exit Edgworth._]--I am sorry I
employ'd this fellow, for he thinks me such; _facinus quos inquinat,
æquat._ But it was for sport; and would I make it serious, the getting
of this license is nothing to me, without other circumstances concur.
I do think how impertinently I labour, if the word be not mine that
the ragged fellow mark'd: and what advantage I have given Ned Winwife
in this time now of working her, though it be mine. He'll go near to
form to her what a debauched rascal I am, and fright her out of all
good conceit of me: I should do so by him, I am sure, if I had the
opportunity. But my hope is in her temper yet; and it must needs be
next to despair, that is grounded on any part of a woman's discretion.
I would give, by my troth now, all I could spare, to my clothes and my
sword, to meet my tatter'd soothsayer again, who was my judge in the
question, to know certainly whose word he has damn'd or saved; for
till then I live but under a reprieve. I must seek him. Who be these?

_Enter BRISTLE and some of the Watch, with WASPE._

WASPE. Sir, you are a Welsh cuckold, and a prating runt, and no

BRI. You say very well.--Come, put in his leg in the middle roundel,
and let him hole there.

[_They put him in the stocks._

WASPE. You stink of leeks, metheglin, and cheese, you rogue.

BRI. Why, what is that to you, if you sit sweetly in the stocks in the
mean time? if you have a mind to stink too, your breeches sit close
enough to your bum. Sit you merry, sir.

QUAR. How now, Numps?

WASPE. It is no matter how; pray you look off.

QUAR. Nay, I'll not offend you, Numps; I thought you had sat there to
be seen.

WASPE. And to be sold, did you not? pray you mind your business, an
you have any.

QUAR. Cry you mercy, Numps; does your leg lie high enough?

_Enter HAGGISE._

BRI. How now, neighbour Haggise, what says justice Overdo's worship to
the other offenders?

HAG. Why, he says just nothing; what should he say, or where should he
say? He is not to be found, man; he has not been seen in the Fair here
all this live-long day, never since seven a clock i' the morning. His
clerks know not what to think on't. There is no court of Pie-poudres
yet. Here they be return'd.

_Enter others of the Watch with BUSY._

BRI. What shall be done with them, then, in your discretion?

HAG. I think we were best put them in the stocks in discretion (there
they will be safe in discretion) for the valour of an hour, or such a
thing, till his worship come.

BRI. It is but a hole matter if we do, neighbour Haggise; come, sir,
[_to Waspe._] here is company for you; heave up the stocks.

[_As they open the stocks, Waspe puts his shoe on his hand, and slips
it in for his leg._

WASPE. I shall put a trick upon your Welsh diligence perhaps.

BRI. Put in your leg, sir. [_To Busy._

QUAR. What, rabbi Busy! is he come?

BUSY. I do obey thee; the lion may roar, but he cannot bite. I am glad
to be thus separated from the heathen of the land, and put apart in
the stocks, for the holy cause.

WASPE. What are you, sir?

BUSY. One that rejoiceth in his affliction, and sitteth here to
prophesy the destruction of fairs and May-games, wakes and
Whitson-ales, and doth sigh and groan for the reformation of these

WASPE. [_to Overdo._] And do you sigh and groan too, or rejoice in
your affliction?

OVER. I do not feel it, I do not think of it, it is a thing without
me: Adam, thou art above these batteries, these contumelies. _In te
manca ruit fortuna_, as thy friend Horace says; thou art one, _Quem
neque pauperies, neque mors, neque vincula, terrent._ And therefore,
as another friend of thine says, I think it be thy friend Persius,
_Non te quæsiveris extra._

QUAR. What's here! a stoic in the stocks? the fool is turn'd

BUSY. Friend, I will leave to communicate my spirit with you, if I
hear any more of those superstitious relics, those lists of Latin, the
very rags of Rome, and patches of popery.

WASPE. Nay, an you begin to quarrel, gentlemen, I'll leave you. I have
paid for quarrelling too lately: look you, a device, but shifting in a
hand for a foot. God be wi' you.

[_Slips out his hand._

BUSY. Wilt thou then leave thy brethren in tribulation?

WASPE. For this once, sir.

[_Exit, running._

BUSY. Thou art a halting neutral; stay him there, stop him, that will
not endure the heat of persecution.

BRI. How now, what's the matter?

BUSY. He is fled, he is fled, and dares not sit it out.

BRI. What, has he made an escape! which way? follow, neighbour

[_Exeunt Haggise and Watch._


PURE. O me, in the stocks! have the wicked prevail'd?

BUSY. Peace, religious sister, it is my calling, comfort yourself; an
extraordinary calling, and done for my better standing, my surer
standing, hereafter.

_Enter TROUBLEALL, with a can._

TRO. By whose warrant, by whose warrant, this?

QUAR. O, here's my man dropt in I look'd for.


PURE. O, good sir, they have set the faithful here to be wonder'd at;
and provided holes for the holy of the land.

TRO. Had they warrant for it? shew'd they justice Overdo's hand? if
they had no warrant, they shall answer it.

_Re-enter HAGGISE._

BRI. Sure you did not lock the stocks sufficiently, neighbour Toby.

HAG. No! see if you can lock them better.

BRI. They are very sufficiently lock'd, and truly; yet something is in
the matter.

TRO. True, your warrant is the matter that is in question; by what

BRI. Madman, hold your peace, I will put you in his room else in the
very same hold, do you see?

QUAR. How, is he a madman?

TRO. Shew me justice Overdo's warrant, I obey you.

HAG. You are a mad fool, hold your tongue.

[_Exeunt Haggise and Bristle._

TRO. In justice Overdo's name, I drink to you, and here's my warrant.

[_Shews his can._

OVER. Alas, poor wretch! how it yearns my heart for him! [_Aside._

QUAR. If he be mad, it is in vain to question him. I'll try him
though.--Friend, there was a gentlewoman shew'd you two names some
hours since, Argalus and Palemon, to mark in a book; which of them was
it you mark'd?

TRO. I mark no name but Adam Overdo, that is the name of names, he
only is the sufficient magistrate; and that name I reverence, shew it

QUAR. This fellow's mad indeed: I am further off now than afore.

OVER. I shall not breathe in peace till I have made him some amends.

QUAR. Well, I will make another use of him is come in my head: I have
a nest of beards in my trunk, one something like his.

_Re-enter BRISTLE and HAGGISE._

BRI. This mad fool has made me that I know not whether I have lock'd
the stocks or no; I think I lock'd them.

[_Tries the locks._

TRO. Take Adam Overdo in your mind, and fear nothing.

BRI. 'Slid, madness itself! hold thy peace, and take that.

[_Strikes him._

TRO. Strikest thou without a warrant? take thou that.

[_They fight, and leave open the stocks in the scuffle._

BUSY. We are delivered by miracle; fellow in fetters, let us not
refuse the means; this madness was of the spirit: the malice of the
enemy hath mock'd itself.

[_Exeunt Busy and Overdo._

PURE. Mad do they call him! the world is mad in error, but he is mad
in truth: I love him o' the sudden (the cunning man said all true) and
shall love him more and more. How well it becomes a man to be mad in
truth! O, that I might be his yoke-fellow, and be mad with him, what a
many should we draw to madness in truth with us!


BRI. How now, all 'scaped! where's the woman? it is witchcraft! her
velvet hat is a witch, o' my conscience, or my key! the one.--The
madman was a devil, and I am an ass; so bless me, my place, and mine

[_Exeunt, affrighted._


SCENE I.--_The Fair, as before._

A Booth.

_LANTHORN LEATHERHEAD, dressed as a puppet-show man, FILCHER, and
SHARKWELL with a flag._

LEATH. Well, luck and Saint Bartholomew! out with the sign of our
invention, in the name of wit, and do you beat the drum the while: all
the foul i' the Fair, I mean all the dirt in Smithfield,--that's one
of master Littlewit's carwhitchets now--will be thrown at our banner
to-day, if the matter does not please the people. O the motions that I
Lanthorn Leatherhead have given light to, in my time, since my master
Pod died! Jerusalem was a stately thing, and so was Nineveh, and the
city of Norwich, and Sodom and Gomorrah, with the rising of the
prentices, and pulling down the bawdy-houses there upon
Shrove-Tuesday; but the Gun-powder plot, there was a get-penny! I have
presented that to an eighteen or twenty pence audience, nine times in
an afternoon. Your home-born projects prove ever the best, they are so
easy and familiar; they put too much learning in their things now o'
days: and that I fear will be the spoil of this. Littlewit! I say,
Micklewit! if not too mickle! look to your gathering there, goodman

FILCH. I warrant you, sir.

LEATH. An there come any gentlefolks, take two-pence apiece,

SHARK. I warrant you, sir, three-pence an we can.


SCENE II.--_Another part of the Fair._

_Enter OVERDO, disguised like a Porter._

OVER. This latter disguise, I have borrow'd of a porter, shall carry
me out to all my great and good ends; which however interrupted, were
never destroyed in me: neither is the hour of my severity yet come to
reveal myself, wherein, cloud-like, I will break out in rain and hail,
lightning and thunder, upon the head of enormity. Two main works I
have to prosecute: first, one is to invent some satisfaction for the
poor kind wretch, who is out of his wits for my sake, and yonder I see
him coming, I will walk aside, and project for it.

_Enter WINWIFE and GRACE._

WINW. I wonder where Tom Quarlous is, that he returns not: it may be
he is struck in here to seek us.

GRACE. See, here's our madman again.

_Enter QUARLOUS, in TROUBLEALL'S clothes, followed by DAME PURECRAFT._

QUAR. I have made myself as like him, as his gown and cap will give me

PURE. Sir, I love you, and would be glad to be mad with you in truth.

WINW. How! my widow in love with a madman?

PURE. Verily, I can be as mad in spirit as you.

QUAR. By whose warrant? leave your canting. Gentlewoman, have I found
you? [_To mistress Grace._] save ye, quit ye, and multiply ye! Where's
your book? 'twas a sufficient name I mark'd, let me see't, be not
afraid to shew't me.

GRACE. What would you with it, sir?

QUAR. Mark it again and again at your service.

GRACE. Here it is, sir, this was it you mark'd.

QUAR. _Palemon!_ fare you well, fare you well.

WINW. How, Palemon!

GRACE. Yes, faith, he has discovered it to you now, and therefore
'twere vain to disguise it longer; I am yours, sir, by the benefit of
your fortune.

WINW. And you have him, mistress, believe it, that shall never give
you cause to repent her benefit: but make you rather to think that in
this choice she had both her eyes.

GRACE. I desire to put it to no danger of protestation.

[_Exeunt Grace and Winwife._

QUAR. Palemon the word, and Winwife the man!

PURE. Good sir, vouchsafe a yoke-fellow in your madness, shun not one
of the sanctified sisters, that would draw with you in truth.

QUAR. Away, you are a herd of hypocritical proud ignorants, rather
wild than mad; fitter for woods, and the society of beasts, than
houses, and the congregation of men. You are the second part of the
society of canters, outlaws to order and discipline, and the only
privileged church-robbers of Christendom. Let me alone: _Palemon_ the
word, and Winwife the man!

PURE. I must uncover myself unto him, or I shall never enjoy him, for
all the cunning men's promises. [_Aside._] Good sir, hear me, I am
worth six thousand pound, my love to you is become my rack; I'll tell
you all and the truth, since you hate the hypocrisy of the
party-coloured brotherhood. These seven years I have been a wilful
holy widow, only to draw feasts and gifts from my entangled suitors: I
am also by office an assisting sister of the deacons, and a devourer,
instead of a distributor of the alms. I am a special maker of
marriages for our decayed brethren with our rich widows, for a third
part of their wealth, when they are married, for the relief of the
poor elect: as also our poor handsome young virgins, with our wealthy
bachelors or widowers; to make them steal from their husbands, when I
have confirmed them in the faith, and got all put into their
custodies. And if I have not my bargain, they may sooner turn a
scolding drab into a silent minister, than make me leave pronouncing
reprobation and damnation unto them. Our elder, Zeal-of-the-land,
would have had me, but I know him to be the capital knave of the land,
making himself rich, by being made a feoffee in trust to deceased
brethren, and cozening their heirs, by swearing the absolute gift of
their inheritance. And thus having eased my conscience, and utter'd my
heart with the tongue of my love; enjoy all my deceits together, I
beseech you. I should not have revealed this to you, but that in time
I think you are mad, and I hope you'll think me so too, sir?

QUAR. Stand aside, I'll answer you presently. [_He walks by._] Why
should I not marry this six thousand pound, now I think on't, and a
good trade too that she has beside, ha? The t'other wench Winwife is
sure of; there's no expectation for me there. Here I may make myself
some saver yet, if she continue mad, there's the question. It is money
that I want, why should not I marry the money when 'tis offer'd me? I
have a license and all, it is but razing out one name, and putting in
another. There's no playing with a man's fortune! I am resolved: I
were truly mad an I would not!--Well, come your ways, follow me, an
you will be mad, I'll shew you a warrant!

[_Takes her along with him._

PURE. Most zealously, it is that I zealously desire.

OVER. [_stopping him._] Sir, let me speak with you.

QUAR. By whose warrant?

OVER. The warrant that you tender, and respect so; Justice Overdo's. I
am the man, friend Troubleall, though thus disguised (as the careful
magistrate ought) for the good of the republic in the Fair, and the
weeding out of enormity. Do you want a house, or meat, or drink, or
clothes? speak whatsoever it is, it shall be supplied you; what want

QUAR. Nothing but your warrant.

OVER. My warrant! for what?

QUAR. To be gone, sir.

OVER. Nay, I pray thee stay; I am serious, and have not many words,
nor much time to exchange with thee. Think what may do thee good.

QUAR. Your hand and seal will do me a great deal of good; nothing else
in the whole Fair that I know.

OVER. If it were to any end, thou shouldst have it willingly.

QUAR. Why, it will satisfy me, that's end enough to look on; an you
will not give it me, let me go.

OVER. Alas! thou shalt have it presently; I'll but step into the
scrivener's here by, and bring it. Do not go away.


QUAR. Why, this madman's shape will prove a very fortunate one, I
think. Can a ragged robe produce these effects? if this be the wise
justice, and he bring me his hand, I shall go near to make some use

_Re-enter OVERDO._

He is come already!

OVER. Look thee! here is my hand and seal, Adam Overdo; if there be
any thing to be written above in that paper that thou want'st now, or
at any time hereafter, think on't, it is my deed. I deliver it so; can
your friend write?

QUAR. Her hand for a witness, and all is well.

OVER. With all my heart.

[_He urges her to sign it._

QUAR. Why should not I have the conscience to make this a bond of a
thousand pound now, or what I would else? [_Aside._

OVER. Look you, there it is, and I deliver it as my deed again.

QUAR. Let us now proceed in madness.

[_Exeunt Quarlous and Dame Purecraft._

OVER. Well, my conscience is much eased; I have done my part, though
it doth him no good; yet Adam hath offered satisfaction. The sting is
removed from hence! Poor man, he is much altered with his affliction,
it has brought him low. Now for my other work, reducing the young man,
I have followed so long in love, from the brink of his bane to the
centre of safety. Here, or in some such-like vain place, I shall be
sure to find him. I will wait the good time.


SCENE III.--_Another part of the Fair._

The Puppet-show Booth, as before.

_Enter SHARKWELL and FILCHER, with bills, and COKES in his doublet and
hose, followed by the Boys of the Fair._

COKES. How now! what's here to do, friend? art thou the master of the

SHARK. 'Tis a motion, an't please your worship.

_Enter OVERDO behind._

OVER. My fantastical brother-in-law, master Bartholomew Cokes!

COKES. A motion! what's that! [_Reads._] _The ancient modern history
of Hero and Leander, otherwise called the Touchstone of true Love,
with as true a trial of friendship between Damon and Pythias, two
faithful friends o' the Bank-side._--Pretty, i'faith, what's the
meaning on't? is't an interlude, or what is't?

FILCH. Yes, sir, please you come near, we'll take your money within.

COKES. Back with these children; they do so follow me up and down!


LIT. By your leave, friend.

FILCH. You must pay, sir, an you go in.

LIT. Who, I! I perceive thou know'st not me; call the master of the

SHARK. What, do you not know the author, fellow Filcher? You must take
no money of him; he must come in gratis: master Littlewit is a
voluntary; he is the author.

LIT. Peace, speak not too loud, I would not have any notice taken that
I am the author, till we see how it passes.

COKES. Master Littlewit, how dost thou?

LIT. Master Cokes! you are exceeding well met: what, in your doublet
and hose, without a cloke or a hat?

COKES. I would I might never stir, as I am an honest man, and by that
fire; I have lost all in the Fair, and all my acquaintance too; didst
thou meet any body that I know, master Littlewit? my man Numps, or my
sister Overdo, or mistress Grace? Pray thee, master Littlewit, lend me
some money to see the interlude here; I'll pay thee again, as I am a
gentleman. If thou'lt but carry me home, I have money enough there.

LIT. O, sir, you shall command it; what, will a crown serve you?

COKES. I think it will; what do we pay for coming in, fellows?

FILCH. Two-pence, sir.

COKES. Two-pence! there's twelve-pence, friend: nay, I am a gallant,
as simple as I look now; if you see me with my man about me, and my
artillery again.

LIT. Your man was in the stocks e'en now, sir.

COKES. Who, Numps?

LIT. Yes, faith.

COKES. For what, i'faith? I am glad o' that; remember to tell me on't
anon; I have enough now. What manner of matter is this, master
Littlewit? what kind of actors have you? are they good actors?

LIT. Pretty youths, sir, all children both old and young; here's the
master of 'em--


LEATH. [_aside to Littlewit._] Call me not Leatherhead, but Lantern.

LIT. Master Lantern, that gives light to the business.

COKES. In good time, sir! I would fain see them, I would be glad to
drink with the young company; which is the tiring-house?

LEATH. Troth, sir, our tiring-house is somewhat little; we are but
beginners yet, pray pardon us; you cannot go upright in't.

COKES. No! not now my hat is off? what would you have done with me, if
you had had me feather and all, as I was once to-day? Have you none of
your pretty impudent boys now, to bring stools, fill tobacco, fetch
ale, and beg money, as they have at other houses? Let me see some of
your actors.

LIT. Shew him them, shew him them. Master Lantern, this is a gentleman
that is a favourer of the quality.

[_Exit Leatherhead._

OVER. Ay, the favouring of this licentious quality is the consumption
of many a young gentleman; a pernicious enormity. [_Aside._

_Re-enter LEATHERHEAD, with a basket._

COKES. What! do they live in baskets?

LEATH. They do lie in a basket, sir, they are o' the small players.

COKES. These be players minors indeed. Do you call these players?

LEATH. They are actors, sir, and as good as any, none dispraised, for
dumb shows: indeed, I am the mouth of them all.

COKES. Thy mouth will hold them all. I think one tailor would go near
to beat all this company with a hand bound behind him.

LIT. Ay, and eat them all too, an they were in cake-bread.

COKES. I thank you for that, master Littlewit; a good jest! Which is
your Burbage now?

LEATH. What mean you by that, sir?

COKES. Your best actor, your Field?

LIT. Good, i'faith! you are even with me, sir.

LEATH. This is he, that acts young Leander, sir: he is extremely
beloved of the womenkind, they do so affect his action, the green
gamesters, that come here! and this is lovely Hero: this with the
beard, Damon; and this pretty Pythias: this is the ghost of king
Dionysius in the habit of a scrivener; as you shall see anon at large.

COKES. Well, they are a civil company, I like 'em for that; they offer
not to fleer, nor jeer, nor break jests, as the great players do: and
then, there goes not so much charge to the feasting of them, or making
them drunk, as to the other, by reason of their littleness. Do they
use to play perfect? are they never fluster'd?

LEATH. No, sir, I thank my industry and policy for it; they are as
well govern'd a company, though I say it----And here is young Leander,
is as proper an actor of his inches, and shakes his head like an

COKES. But do you play it according to the printed book? I have read

LEATH. By no means, sir.

COKES. No! how then?

LEATH. A better way, sir; that is too learned and poetical for our
audience: what do they know what _Hellespont_ is, _guilty of true
love's blood?_ or what _Abydos_ is? or _the other, Sestos hight?_

COKES. Thou art in the right; I do not know myself.

LEATH. No, I have entreated master Littlewit to take a little pains to
reduce it to a more familiar strain for our people.

COKES. How, I pray thee, good master Littlewit?

LIT. It pleases him to make a matter of it, sir; but there is no such
matter, I assure you: I have only made it a little easy, and modern
for the times, sir, that's all. As for the Hellespont, I imagine our
Thames here; and then Leander I make a dyer's son about Puddle-wharf:
and Hero a wench o' the Bank-side, who going over one morning to Old
Fish-street, Leander spies her land at Trig-stairs, and falls in love
with her. Now do I introduce Cupid, having metamorphosed himself into
a drawer, and he strikes Hero in love with a pint of sherry; and other
pretty passages there are of the friendship, that will delight you,
sir, and please you of judgment.

COKES. I'll be sworn they shall: I am in love with the actors already,
and I'll be allied to them presently.--They respect gentlemen, these
fellows:--Hero shall be my fairing: but which of my fairings?--let me
see--i'faith, my fiddle; and Leander my fiddlestick: then Damon my
drum, and Pythias my pipe, and the ghost of Dionysius my hobby-horse.
All fitted.

_Enter WINWIFE and GRACE._

WINW. Look, yonder's your Cokes gotten in among his play-fellows; I
thought we could not miss him at such a spectacle.

GRACE. Let him alone, he is so busy he will never spy us.

LEATH. Nay, good sir! [_To Cokes, who is handling the puppets._

COKES. I warrant thee I will not hurt her, fellow; what, dost thou
think me uncivil? I pray thee be not jealous; I am toward a wife.

LIT. Well, good master Lantern, make ready to begin that I may fetch
my wife; and look you be perfect, you undo me else, in my reputation.

LEATH. I warrant you, sir, do not you breed too great an expectation
of it among your friends; that's the hurter of these things.

LIT. No, no, no.


COKES. I'll stay here and see: pray thee let me see.

WINW. How diligent and troublesome he is!

GRACE. The place becomes him, methinks.

OVER. My ward, mistress Grace, in the company of a stranger! I doubt I
shall be compell'd to discover myself before my time. [_Aside._

supporting MRS. OVERDO, masked._

FILCH. Two-pence apiece, gentlemen, an excellent motion.

KNOCK. Shall we have fine fire-works, and good vapours?

SHARK. Yes, captain, and water-works too.

WHIT. I pree dee take care o' dy shmall lady there, Edgworth; I will
look to dish tall lady myself.

LEATH. Welcome, gentlemen, welcome, gentlemen.

WHIT. Predee mashter o' the monshtersh, help a very sick lady here to
a chair to shit in.

LEATH. Presently, sir.

[_A chair is brought in for Mrs. Overdo._

WHIT. Good fait now, Ursula's ale and acqua-vitæ ish to blame for't;
shit down, shweet-heart, shit down and sleep a little.

EDG. [_to Mrs. Littlewit._] Madam, you are very welcome hither.

KNOCK. Yes, and you shall see very good vapours.

OVER. Here is my care come! I like to see him in so good company: and
yet I wonder that persons of such fashion should resort hither.

EDG. There is a very private house, madam.

LEATH. Will it please your ladyship sit, madam?

MRS. LIT. Yes, goodman. They do so all-to-be-madam me, I think they
think me a very lady.

EDG. What else, madam?

MRS. LIT. Must I put off my mask to him?

EDG. O, by no means.

MRS. LIT. How should my husband know me then?

KNOCK. Husband! an idle vapour; he must not know you, nor you him:
there's the true vapour.

OVER. Yea! I will observe more of this. [_Aside._] Is this a lady,

WHIT. Ay, and dat is anoder lady, shweet-heart; if dou hasht a mind to
'em, give me twelve-pence from tee, and dou shalt have eder oder on

OVER. Ay, this will prove my chiefest enormity: I will follow this.

EDG. Is not this a finer life, lady, than to be clogg'd with a

MRS. LIT. Yes, a great deal. When will they begin, trow, in the name
o' the motion?

EDG. By and by, madam; they stay but for company.

KNOCK. Do you hear, puppet-master, these are tedious vapours, when
begin you?

LEATH. We stay but for master Littlewit, the author, who is gone for
his wife: and we begin presently.

MRS. LIT. That's I, that's I.

EDG. That was you, lady; but now you are no such poor thing.

KNOCK. Hang the author's wife, a running vapour! here be ladies will
stay for ne'er a Delia of them all.

WHIT. But hear me now, here ish one o' de ladish ashleep, stay till
shee but vake, man.

_Enter WASPE._

WASPE. How now, friends! what's here to do?

FILCH. Two-pence apiece, sir, the best motion in the Fair.

WASPE. I believe you lie; if you do, I'll have my money again, and
beat you.

MRS. LIT. Numps is come!

WASPE. Did you see a master of mine come in here, a tall young 'squire
of Harrow o' the Hill, master Bartholomew Cokes?

FILCH. I think there be such a one within.

WASPE. Look he be, you were best: but it is very likely: I wonder I
found him not at all the rest. I have been at the Eagle, and the Black
Wolf, and the Bull with the five legs and two pizzles:--he was a calf
at Uxbridge fair two years agone--and at the dogs that dance the
morrice, and the hare of the Tabor; and mist him at all these! Sure
this must needs be some fine sight that holds him so, if it have him.

COKES. Come, come, are you ready now?

LEATH. Presently, sir.

WASPE. Hoyday, he's at work in his doublet and hose! do you hear, sir,
are you employ'd, that you are bare-headed and so busy?

COKES. Hold your peace, Numps; you have been in the stocks, I hear.

WASPE. Does he know that! nay, then the date of my authority is out; I
must think no longer to reign, my government is at an end. He that
will correct another must want fault in himself.

WINW. Sententious Numps! I never heard so much from him before.

LEATH. Sure master Littlewit will not come; please you take your
place, sir; we'll begin.

COKES. I pray thee do, mine ears long to be at it, and my eyes too. O
Numps, in the stocks, Numps! where's your sword, Numps!

WASPE. I pray you intend your game, sir, let me alone.

COKES. Well then, we are quit for all. Come, sit down, Numps; I'll
interpret to thee: did you see mistress Grace? It's no matter,
neither, now I think on't, tell me anon.

WINW. A great deal of love and care he expresses!

GRACE. Alas, would you have him to express more than he has? that were

COKES. Peace, ho! now, now.

LEATH. _Gentles, that no longer your expectations may wander,
  Behold our chief actor, amorous Leander.
  With a great deal of cloth, lapp'd about him like a scarf,
  For he yet serves his father, a dyer at Puddle-wharf;
  Which place we'll make bold with, to call it our Abydus,
  As the Bank-side is our Sestos; and let it not be deny'd us.
  Now as he is beating to make the dye take the fuller,
  Who chances to come by, but fair Hero in a sculler;
  And seeing Leander's naked leg and goodly calf,
  Cast at him from the boat a sheep's eye and an half.
  Now she is landed, and the sculler come back,
  By and by you shall see what Leander doth lack._

PUP. LEAN. _Cole, Cole, old Cole!_

LEATH. _That is the sculler's name without controul._

PUP. LEAN. _Cole, Cole, I say, Cole!_

LEATH. _We do hear you._

PUP. LEAN. _Old Cole._

LEATH. _Old Cole! is the dyer turn'd collier? how do you sell?_

PUP. LEAN. _A pox o' your manners, kiss my hole here, and smell._

LEATH. _Kiss your hole and smell! there's manners indeed._

PUP. LEAN. _Why, Cole, I say, Cole!_

LEATH. _Is't the sculler you need?_

PUP. LEAN. _Ay, and be hanged._

LEATH. _Be hang'd! look you yonder.
  Old Cole, you must go hang with master Leander._

PUP. COLE. _Where is he?_

PUP. LEAN. _Here, Cole: what fairest of fairs,
  Was that fare that thou landedst but now at Trig-stairs?_

COKES. What was that, fellow? pray thee tell me, I scarce understand

LEATH. _Leander does ask, sir, what fairest of fairs,
  Was the fare he landed but now at Trig-stairs?_

PUP. COLE. _It is lovely Hero._

PUP. LEAN. _Nero?_

PUP. COLE. _No, Hero._

LEATH. _It is Hero
  Of the Bank-side, he saith, to tell you truth without erring,
  Is come over into Fish-street to eat some fresh herring.
  Leander says no more, but as fast as he can,
  Gets on all his best clothes, and will after to the Swan._

COKES. Most admirable good, is't not?

LEATH. _Stay, sculler._

PUP. COLE. _What say you?_

LEATH. _You must stay for Leander,
  And carry him to the wench._

PUP. COLE. _You rogue, I am no pander._

COKES. He says he is no pander. 'Tis a fine language: I understand it

LEATH. _Are you no pander, goodman Cole? here's no man says you are;
  You'll grow a hot cole, it seems; pray you stay for your fare._

PUP. COLE. _Will he come away?_

LEATH. _What do you say?_

PUP. COLE. _I'd have him come away._

LEATH. _Would you have Leander come away? why, pray, sir, stay.
  You are angry, goodman Cole; I believe the fair maid
  Came over with you a' trust: tell us, sculler, are you paid?_

PUP. COLE. _Yes, goodman Hogrubber of Pickthatch._

LEATH. _How, Hogrubber of Pickthatch?_

PUP. COLE. _Ay, Hogrubber of Pickthatch. Take you that._

  [Strikes him over the pate.

LEATH. _O, my head!_

PUP. COLE. _Harm watch, harm catch!_

COKES. _Harm watch, harm catch_, he says; very good, i'faith: the
sculler had like to have knock'd you, sirrah.

LEATH. Yes, but that his fare call'd him away.

PUP. LEAN. _Row apace, row apace, row, row, row, row, row._

LEATH. _You are knavishly loaden, sculler, take heed where you go._

PUP. COLE. _Knave in your face, goodman rogue._

PUP. LEAN. _Row, row, row, row, row._

COKES. He said, knave in your face, friend.

LEATH. Ay, sir, I heard him; but there's no talking to these watermen,
they will have the last word.

COKES. Od's my life! I am not allied to the sculler yet; he shall be
_Dauphin my boy._ But my fiddle-stick does fiddle in and out too much:
I pray thee speak to him on't; tell him I would have him tarry in my
sight more.

LEATH. I pray you be content; you'll have enough on him, sir.
  _Now, gentles, I take it, here is none of you so stupid,
  But that you have heard of a little god of love call'd Cupid;
  Who out of kindness to Leander, hearing he but saw her,
  This present day and hour doth turn himself to a drawer.
  And because he would have their first meeting to be merry,
  He strikes Hero in love to him with a pint of sherry;
  Which he tells her from amorous Leander is sent her,
  Who after him into the room of Hero doth venture._

  [Puppet Leander goes into Mistress Hero's room.

PUP. JONAS. _A pint of sack, score a pint of sack in the Coney._

COKES. Sack! you said but e'en now it should be sherry.

PUP. JONAS. _Why, so it is; sherry, sherry, sherry._

COKES. _Sherry, sherry, sherry!_ By my troth he makes me merry. I must
have a name for Cupid too. Let me see, thou might'st help me, now, an
thou would'st, Numps, at a dead lift: but thou art dreaming of the
stocks still.--Do not think on't, I have forgot it; 'tis but a nine
days' wonder, man; let it not trouble thee.

WASPE. I would the stocks were about your neck, sir; condition I hung
by the heels in them till the wonder were off from you, with all my

COKES. Well said, resolute Numps! but hark you, friend, where's the
friendship all this while between my drum Damon, and my pipe Pythias?

LEATH. You shall see by and by, sir.

COKES. You think my hobby-horse is forgotten too; no, I'll see them
all enact before I go; I shall not know which to love best else.

KNOCK. This gallant has interrupting vapours, troublesome vapours;
Whit, puff with him.

WHIT. No, I pree dee, captain, let him alone; he is a child, i'faith,

LEATH. _Now, gentles, to the friends, who in number are two,
  And lodged in that ale-house in which fair Hero does do.
  Damon, for some kindness done him the last week,
  Is come, fair Hero, in Fish-street, this morning to seek:
  Pythias does smell the knavery of the meeting,
  And now you shall see their true-friendly greeting._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _You whore-masterly slave, you._

COKES. Whore-masterly slave you! very friendly and familiar, that.

PUP. DAMON. _Whore-master in thy face,
  Thou hast lain with her thyself, I'll prove it in this place._

COKES. Damon says, Pythias has lain with her himself, he'll prove't in
this place.

LEATH. _They are whore-masters both, sir, that's a plain case._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _You lie like a rogue._

LEATH. _Do I lie like a rogue?_

PUP. PYTHIAS. _A pimp and a scab._

LEATH. _A pimp and a scab.
  I say, between you, you have both but one drab._

PUP. DAMON. _You lie again._

LEATH. _Do I lie again?_

PUP. DAMON. _Like a rogue again._

LEATH. _Like a rogue again?_

PUP. PYTHIAS. _And you are a pimp again._

COKES. And you are a pimp again, he says.

PUP. DAMON. _And a scab again._

COKES. And a scab again, he says.

LEATH. _And I say again, you are both whore-masters, again.
  And you have both but one drab again._

PUP. DAMON AND PYTHIAS. _Dost thou, dost thou, dost thou?_

  [They fall upon him.

LEATH. _What, both at once?_

PUP. PYTHIAS. _Down with him, Damon._

PUP. DAMON. _Pink his guts, Pythias._

LEATH. _What, so malicious?
  Will ye murder me, masters both, in my own house?_

COKES. Ho! well acted, my drum, well acted, my pipe, well acted still!

WASPE. Well acted, with all my heart.

LEATH. _Hold, hold your hands._

COKES. Ay, both your hands, for my sake! for you have both done well.

PUP. DAMON. _Gramercy, pure Pythias._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _Gramercy, dear Damon._

COKES. Gramercy to you both, my pipe and my drum.

PUP. PYTHIAS AND DAMON. _Come, now we'll together to breakfast to

LEATH. _'Tis well you can now go to breakfast to Hero.
  You have given me my breakfast, with a hone and honero._

COKES. How is't, friend, have they hurt thee?

LEATH. O no:
  Between you and I, sir, we do but make show.--
  _Thus, gentles, you perceive, without any denial,
  'Twixt Damon and Pythias here, friendship's true trial.
  Though hourly they quarrel thus, and roar each with other.
  They fight you no more than does brother with brother;
  But friendly together, at the next man they meet,
  They let fly their anger, as here you might see't._

COKES. Well, we have seen it, and thou hast felt it, whatsoe'er thou
sayest. What's next, what's next?

LEATH. _This while young Leander with fair Hero is drinking,
  And Hero grown drunk to any man's thinking!
  Yet was it not three pints of sherry could flaw her,
  Till Cupid distinguished like Jonas the drawer,
  From under his apron, where his lechery lurks,
  Put love in her sack. Now mark how it works._

PUP. HERO. _O Leander, Leander, my dear, my dear Leander,
  I'll for ever be thy goose, so thou'lt be my gander._

COKES. Excellently well said, Fiddle, she'll ever be his goose, so
he'll be her gander; was't not so?

LEATH. Yes, sir, but mark his answer now.

PUP. LEAN. _And sweetest of geese, before I go to bed,
  I'll swim over the Thames, my goose, thee to tread._

COKES. Brave! he will swim over the Thames, and tread his goose
to-night, he says.

LEATH. Ay, peace, sir, they'll be angry if they hear you
eavesdropping, now they are setting their match.

PUP. LEAN. _But lest the Thames should be dark, my goose, my dear
  Let thy window be provided of a candle's end._

PUP. HERO. _Fear not, my gander, I protest I should handle
  My matters very ill, if I had not a whole candle._

PUP. LEAN. _Well then, look to't, and kiss me to boot._

LEATH. _Now here come the friends again, Pythias and Damon,
  And under their clokes they have of bacon a gammon._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _Drawer, fill some wine here._

LEATH. _How, some wine there!
  There's company already, sir, pray forbear._

PUP. DAMON. _'Tis Hero._

LEATH. _Yes, but she will not to be taken,
  After sack and fresh herring, with your Dunmow-bacon._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _You lie, it's Westfabian._

LEATH. _Westphalian_ you should say.

PUP. DAMON. _If you hold not your peace, you are a coxcomb, I would

  [Leander and Hero kiss.

  _What's here, what's here? kiss, kiss, upon kiss!_

LEATH. _Ay, wherefore should they not? what harm is in this?
  'Tis mistress Hero._

PUP. DAMON. _Mistress Hero's a whore._

LEATH._ Is she a whore? keep you quiet, or, sir, knave, out of door._

PUP. DAMON. _Knave out of door?_

PUP. HERO. _Yes, knave out of door._

PUP. DAMON. _Whore out of door._

  [They fall together by the ears.

PUP. HERO. _I say, knave out of door._

PUP. DAMON. _I say, whore out of door._

PUP. PYTHIAS. _Yea, so say I too._

PUP. HERO. _Kiss the whore o' the arse._

LEATH. _Now you have something to do:
  You must kiss her o' the arse, she says._

PUP. DAMON AND PYTHIAS. _So we will, so we will._

  [They kick her.

PUP. HERO. _O my haunches, O my haunches, hold, hold._

LEATH. _Stand'st thou still!
  Leander, where, art thou? stand'st thou still like a sot,
  And not offer'st to break both their heads with a pot?
  See who's at thine elbow there! puppet Jonas and Cupid._

PUP. JONAS. _Upon 'em, Leander, be not so stupid._

PUP. LEAN. _You goat-bearded slave!_

PUP. DAMON. _You whore-master knave!_

  [They fight.

PUP. LEAN. _Thou art a whore-master._

PUP. JONAS. _Whore-masters all._

LEATH. _See, Cupid with a word has tane up the brawl._

KNOCK. These be fine vapours!

COKES. By this good day, they fight bravely; do they not, Numps?

WASPE. Yes, they lack'd but you to be their second all this while.

LEATH. _This tragical encounter falling out thus to busy us,
  It raises up the ghost of their friend Dionysius;
  Not like a monarch, but the master of a school,
  In a scrivener's furr'd gown, which shews he is no fool:
  For therein he hath wit enough to keep himself warm.
  O Damon, he cries, and Pythias, what harm
  Hath poor Dionysius done you in his grave,
  That after his death you should fall out thus and rave,
  And call amorous Leander whore-master knave?_

PUP. DAMON. _I cannot, I will not, I promise you, endure it._

_RABBI BUSY rushes in._

BUSY. Down with Dagon! down with Dagon! 'tis I, I will no
longer endure your profanations.

LEATH. What mean you, sir?

BUSY. I will remove Dagon there, I say, that idol, that heathenish
idol, that remains, as I may say, a beam, a very beam,--not a beam of
the sun, nor a beam of the moon, nor a beam of a balance, neither a
house-beam, nor a weaver's beam, but a beam in the eye, in the eye of
the brethren; a very great beam, an exceeding great beam; such as are
your stage-players, rimers, and morrice-dancers, who have walked hand
in hand, in contempt of the brethren, and the cause; and been born out
by instruments of no mean countenance.

LEATH. Sir, I present nothing but what is licensed by authority.

BUSY. Thou art all license, even licentiousness itself, Shimei!

LEATH. I have the master of the revels' hand for't, sir.

BUSY. The master of the rebels' hand thou hast. Satan's! hold thy
peace, thy scurrility, shut up thy mouth, thy profession is damnable,
and in pleading for it thou dost plead for Baal. I have long opened my
mouth wide, and gaped; I have gaped as the oyster for the tide, after
thy destruction: but cannot compass it by suit or dispute; so that I
look for a bickering, ere long, and then a battle.

KNOCK. Good Banbury vapours!

COKES. Friend, you'd have an ill match on't, if you bicker with him
here; though he be no man of the fist, he has friends that will to
cuffs for him. Numps, will not you take our side?

EDG. Sir, it shall not need; in my mind he offers him a fairer course,
to end it by disputation: hast thou nothing to say for thyself, in
defence of thy quality?

LEATH. Faith, sir, I am not well-studied in these controversies,
between the hypocrites and us. But here's one of my motion, puppet
Dionysius, shall undertake him, and I'll venture the cause on't.

COKES. Who, my hobby-horse! will he dispute with him?

LEATH. Yes, sir, and make a hobby-ass of him, I hope.

COKES. That's excellent! indeed he looks like the best scholar of them
all. Come, sir, you must be as good as your word now.

BUSY. I will not fear to make my spirit and gifts known: assist me
zeal, fill me, fill me, that is, make me full!

WINW. What a desperate, profane wretch is this! is there any ignorance
or impudence like his, to call his zeal to fill him against a puppet?

QUAR. I know no fitter match than a puppet to commit with an

BUSY. First, I say unto thee, idol, thou hast no calling.

PUP. DION. _You lie, I am call'd Dionysius._

LEATH. The motion says, you lie, he is call'd Dionysius in the matter,
and to that calling he answers.

BUSY. I mean no vocation, idol, no present lawful calling.

PUP. DION. _Is yours a lawful calling?_

LEATH. The motion asketh, if yours be a lawful calling.

BUSY. Yes, mine is of the spirit.

PUP. DION. _Then idol is a lawful calling._

LEATH. He says, then idol is a lawful calling; for you call'd him
idol, and your calling is of the spirit.

COKES. Well disputed, hobby-horse.

BUSY. Take not part with the wicked, young gallant: he neigheth and
hinnieth; all is but hinnying sophistry. I call him idol again; yet, I
say, his calling, his profession is profane, it is profane, idol.

PUP. DION. _It is not profane._

LEATH. It is not profane, he says.

BUSY. It is profane.

PUP. DION. _It is not profane._

BUSY. It is profane.

PUP. DION. _It is not profane._

LEATH. Well said, confute him with _Not_, still. You cannot bear him
down with your base noise, sir.

BUSY. Nor he me, with his treble creeking, though he creek like the
chariot wheels of Satan; I am zealous for the cause--

LEATH. As a dog for a bone.

BUSY. And I say, it is profane, as being the page of Pride, and the
waiting-woman of Vanity.

PUP. DION. _Yea! what say you to your tire-women, then?_

LEATH. Good.

PUP. DION. _Or feather-makers in the Friers, that are of your faction
of faith? are not they with their perukes, and their puffs, their
fans, and their huffs, as much pages of Pride, and waiters upon
Vanity? What say you, what say you, what say you?_

BUSY. I will not answer for them.

PUP. DION. _Because you cannot, because you cannot. Is a bugle-maker a
lawful calling? or the confect-makers? such you have there; or your
French fashioner? you would have all the sin within yourselves, would
you not, would you not?_

BUSY. No, Dagon.

PUP. DION. _What then, Dagonet? is a puppet worse than these?_

BUSY. Yes, and my main argument against you is, that you are an
abomination; for the male, among you, putteth on the apparel of the
female, and the female of the male.

PUP. DION. _You lie, you lie, you lie abominably._

COKES. Good, by my troth, he has given him the lie thrice.

PUP. DION. _It is your old stale argument against the players, but it
will not hold against the puppets; for we have neither male nor female
amongst us. And that thou may'st see, if thou wilt, like a malicious
purblind zeal as thou art._

[Takes up his garment.

EDG. By my faith, there he has answer'd you, friend, a plain

PUP. DION. _Nay, I'll prove, against e'er a Rabbin of them all, that
my standing is as lawful as his; that I speak by inspiration, as well
as he; that I have as little to do with learning as he; and do scorn
her helps as much as he._

BUSY. I am confuted, the cause hath failed me.

PUP. DION. _Then be converted, be converted._

LEATH. Be converted, I pray you, and let the play go on!

BUSY. Let it go on; for I am changed, and will become a beholder with

COKES. That's brave, i'faith, thou hast carried it away, hobby-horse;
on with the play.

OVER. [_discovering himself._] Stay, now do I forbid; I am Adam
Overdo! sit still, I charge you.

COKES. What, my brother-in-law!

GRACE. My wise guardian!

EDG. Justice Overdo!

OVER. It is time to take enormity by the forehead, and brand it; for I
have discovered enough.

_Enter QUARLOUS in TROUBLEALL'S clothes, as before, and DAME

QUAR. Nay, come, mistress bride; you must do as I do, now. You must be
mad with me, in truth. I have here justice Overdo for it.

OVER. Peace, good Troubleall; come hither, and you shall trouble none.
I will take the charge of you, and your friend too; you also, young
man [_to Edgworth_] shall be my care; stand there.

EDG. Now, mercy upon me.

KNOCK. Would we were away, Whit, these are dangerous vapours; best
fall off with our birds, for fear o' the cage.

[_They attempt to steal away._

OVER. Stay, is not my name your terror?

WHIT. Yesh fait, man, and it ish for tat we would be gone, man.


LIT. O, gentlemen! did you not see a wife of mine? I have lost my
little wife, as I shall be trusted; my little pretty Win. I left her
at the great woman's house in trust yonder, the pig-woman's, with
captain Jordan, and captain Whit, very good men, and I cannot hear of
her. Poor fool, I fear she's stepp'd aside. Mother, did you not see

OVER. If this grave matron be your mother, sir, stand by her, _et
digito compesce labellum;_ I may perhaps spring a wife for you anon.
Brother Bartholomew, I am sadly sorry to see you so lightly given, and
such a disciple of enormity, with your grave governor Humphrey: but
stand you both there, in the middle place; I will reprehend you in
your course. Mistress Grace, let me rescue you out of the hands of the

WINW. Pardon me, sir, I am a kinsman of hers.

OVER. Are you so! of what name, sir?

WINW. Winwife, sir.

OVER. Master Winwife! I hope you have won no wife of her, sir; if you
have, I will examine the possibility of it, at fit leisure. Now, to my
enormities: look upon me, O London! and see me, O Smithfield! the
example of justice, and Mirrour of Magistrates; the true top of
formality, and scourge of enormity. Hearken unto my labours, and but
observe my discoveries; and compare Hercules with me, if thou dar'st,
of old; or Columbus, Magellan, or our countryman Drake, of later
times. Stand forth, you weeds of enormity, and spread. First, Rabbi
Busy, thou superlunatical hypocrite;--[_to Leatherhead._] Next thou
other extremity, thou profane professor of puppetry, little better
than poetry:--[_to Whit._] Then thou strong debaucher and seducer of
youth; witness this easy and honest young man, [_pointing to
Edgworth._]--[_to Knockem._] Now, thou esquire of dames, madams, and
twelve-penny ladies.--Now, my green madam herself of the price; let me
unmask your ladyship.

[_Discovers Mrs. Littlewit._

LIT. O my wife, my wife, my wife!

OVER. Is she your wife? _Redde te Harpocratem!_

_Enter TROUBLEALL, with a dripping-pan, followed by URSULA and

TRO. By your leave, stand by, my masters, be uncover'd.

URS. O stay him, stay him, help to cry, Nightingale; my pan, my pan!

OVER. What's the matter?

NIGHT. He has stolen gammar Ursula's pan.

TRO. Yes, and I fear no man but justice Overdo.

OVER. Ursula! where is she? O the sow of enormity, this! welcome,
stand you there; you, songster, there.

URS. An't please your worship, I am in no fault: a gentleman stripped
him in my booth, and borrowed his gown, and his hat; and he ran away
with my goods here for it.

OVER. [_to Quarlous._] Then this is the true madman, and you are the

QUAR. You are in the right: I am mad but from the gown outward.

OVER. Stand you there.

QUAR. Where you please, sir.

MRS. OVER. [_waking_] O, lend me a bason, I am sick, I am sick!
where's master Overdo? Bridget, call hither my Adam.

OVER. How!

[_He is shamed and silenced._

WHIT. Dy very own wife, i'fait, worshipful Adam.

MRS. OVER. Will not my Adam come at me? shall I see him no more then?

QUAR. Sir, why do you not go on with the enormity? are you oppressed
with it? I'll help you: hark you, sir, in your ear--Your innocent
young man, you have ta'en such care of all this day, is a cut-purse,
that hath got all your brother Cokes' things, and helped you to your
beating and the stocks; if you have a mind to hang him now, and shew
him your magistrate's wit, you may: but I should think it were better
recovering the goods, and to save your estimation in him. I thank you,
sir, for the gift of your ward, mistress Grace; look you, here is your
hand and seal, by the way. Master Winwife, give you joy, you are
_Palemon_, you are possessed of the gentlewoman, but she must pay me
value, here's warrant for it. And, honest madman, there's thy gown and
cap again; I thank thee for my wife. Nay, I can be mad, sweet-heart,
[_to Mrs. Purecraft_] when I please still; never fear me; and careful
Numps, where's he? I thank him for my license.


QUAR. 'Tis true, Numps.

WASPE. I'll be hang'd then.

QUAR. Look in your box, Numps.--Nay, sir, [_to Overdo._] stand not you
fix'd here, like a stake in Finsbury, to be shot at, or the
whipping-post in the Fair, but get your wife out o' the air, it will
make her worse else; and remember you are but Adam, flesh and blood!
you have your frailty, forget your other name of Overdo, and invite us
all to supper. There you and I will compare our discoveries; and drown
the memory of all enormity in your biggest bowl at home.

COKES. How now, Numps, have you lost it? I warrant 'twas when thou
wert in the stocks: Why dost not speak!

WASPE. I will never speak while I live again, for aught I know.

OVER. Nay, Humphrey, if I be patient, you must be so too; this
pleasant conceited gentleman hath wrought upon my judgment, and
prevail'd: I pray you take care of your sick friend, mistress Alice,
and my good friends all--

QUAR. And no _enormities._

OVER. I invite you home with me to my house to supper: I will have
none fear to go along, for my intents are _ad correctionem, non ad
destructionem; ad ædificandum, non ad diruendum_: so lead on.

COKES. Yes, and bring the actors along, we'll have the rest of the
play at home.



_Your Majesty hath seen the play, and you
Can best allow it from your ear and view.
You know the scope of writers, and what store
Of leave is given them, if they take not more,
And turn it into license: you can tell
If we have us'd that leave you gave us well;
Or whether we to rage or license break,
Or be profane, or make profane men speak:
This is your power to judge, great sir, and not
The envy of a few. Which if we have got,
We value less what their dislike can bring,
If it so happy be, t' have pleased the King._

Transcriber's Note

The text of this transcription is from the second volume of the
"Everyman's Library" edition of Jonson's plays which was first
published in 1910 by J.M. Dent in London. Images of a reprint of this
edition are posted at:


As a reference, a copy of the 1640 edition (i.e., the "Folio") made
available by the University of California was also consulted. Images
of this copy are posted at:


Any transcription of a 1910 edition of a Jacobean text will run into
some minor problems, and "Bartholomew Fair" poses its own special set
of challenges. The goal of the Everyman's Library edition was to
create a readable text, but editorial standards have changed since it
was first published. Certain words from the Folio were censored. For
example, "t--" is substituted for "turd". The Everyman's Library
edition frequently spells out words that are contractions in the
Folio, for example, substituting _in_ for _i'_ and _have_ for _ha'_.
The Folio includes many stage directions, but there are
inconsistencies, errors, and apparent omissions. As a corrective, the
editor of the 1910 edition added more stage directions than more
recent editors would. In the Folio, stage directions are printed in
the margins to indicate that the action happens during the dialogue,
and some lines are printed to the right of others to indicate
simultaneous dialogue, for example, during Nightingale's song in Act
III. The 1910 edition prints the text without columns or margins.
Consequently some stage directions were changed, and the dialogue is
printed sequentially, making it harder for the reader to get a sense
of the stage action.

In general, this transcription retains the text of the Everyman's
Library edition. Censored words have been restored, and a few errors
have been corrected. Inconsistencies in the character titles have
been corrected, and character names in stage directions have been
spelled out. Following the Folio's conventions, the 1910 text
italicizes text to set off songs or lines from the play within a play,
though somewhat inconsistently. This use of italics has been made
consistent. In the 1910 text, character titles preceding dialogue in a
regular typeface are italicized, and character titles preceding the
italicized text of songs or the play within the play are printed in a
regular typeface. The html-based files of this transcription retain
this use of contrasting regular and italicized typefaces. In the text
version of this transcription, all character titles preceding dialogue
and in stage directions for entrances are capitalized. The character
titles of the puppets in Act V have been adjusted to help clarify
which lines are part of the play within a play.

The following changes to the Everyman's Library text are noted:

- Cover: The cover has been edited from the original dust jacket.

- Title page: The 1910 text, which is part of an anthology of Jonson's
plays, only has a title page for the collection. The text included in
the title page for this etext is based on the text of the Folio's
title page.

- p. 189: WASPE. Good master Hornet, t--in your teeth--Changed "t--in"
to "turd in" as in the Folio.

- p. 189: and t--in your little wife's teeth too--Changed "t--in" to
"turd in".

- p. 190: WASPE. Marry gip, goody She-justice, mistress Frenchhood!
t--in your teeth, and t--in your Frenchhood's teeth too--Changed
"t--in" to "turd in".

- p. 191: MRS. LIT. And I am, for the cosset his charge--Assigned this
line to Winwife in keeping with the Folio.

- p. 192: OVER. You will not let him go, brother, and lose him?--For
consistency, changed the character title "OVER." to "MRS. OVER."

- p. 193: GRA. Truly, I have no such fancy to the Fair--For
consistency, changed the character title "GRA." to "GRACE."

- p. 195: For consistency with the rest of the text, changed the
character title "BUS." to "BUSY."

- p. 197: The text of the song beginning with the line "Now the Fair's
a filling!" has been italicized in keeping with the Folio and the
convention elsewhere in the text of italicizing songs.

- p. 198-99: and a quarter of pound of colt's-foot mixt with it too,
to [eke] it out.--The Everyman's Library edition substituted "[eke]"
for "itch" in the Folio. The original word has been restored.

- p. 206: because he is an ass. and may be a-kin to the
Cokeses?--Changed period after "ass" to a comma.

- p. 209: [_Beats Overdo._--Changed the stage direction to "[_They
speak all together; and Waspe beats Overdo._" based on the stage
direction in the Folio and deleted a second stage direction ("[_Beats
Overdo again._"), which is not in the Folio. In the Folio, the
dialogue is printed in two columns, with Cokes', Mrs. Overdo's, and
most of Waspe's lines in one column, and Justice Overdo's line in the
other. The stage direction is printed in the right margin.

- p. 209: _Enter VAL, WHIT, HAGGISE, and BRISTLE._--Deleted "VAL" from
the list of characters entering. In the Folio, Jonson usually lists at
the beginning of a scene who is to speak in that scene and often uses
these lists to indicate an entrance. This character was not listed at
the beginning of this scene in the Folio and has no lines.

- p. 210: HAD. Why, should the watch go by the clock--Corrected the
character title abbreviation to "HAG." in keeping with the Folio.

- p. 214: in justice name, and the king's, and for the
commonwealth.--Inserted "[_Exit._" at the end of Overdo's speech. On
p. 217, a stage direction indicates that Overdo re-enters, but the
Everyman's Library edition does not indicate his exit after his
speech. The Folio implies he exits before Cokes, Mistress Overdo, and
Grace enter.

- p. 215: nay, you have it, sir, an you be angry, t--in your teeth,
twice;--Changed "t--in" to "turd in".

- p. 218: Look you, sister, here, here, [_he shews his purse
boastingly_], let him come--Deleted the comma after the second "here"
for consistency.

- p. 218: COKES. _So I heard them say!_--In keeping with the Folio,
the text "So I heard them say!" is not italicized, and consequently
the character title "Cokes" is italicized in the html-based files.

- p. 223: WINW. I'll look to you, in faith, gamester.--[_Aside._] An
unfortunate foolish tribe--Reversed the order of the em dash and the
stage direction to clarify that the first sentence is an aside.

- p. 224: _Enter MRS. PURECRAFT._--Changed "MRS." to "DAME" for

- p. 228: _Enter POCHER, and Officers with BUSY, followed by MRS.
PURECRAFT._--Changed "MRS." to "DAME" for consistency.

- p. 234: After Knockem's line "To what do you say nay, sir?",
inserted the stage direction from the Folio describing the game of

- p. 236: WASPE. A t-- in your teeth, never pre dee me, for I will
have nothing mistaken.--Changed "t--" to "turd".

- p. 236: KNOCK. T--! ha, t--? a noisome vapour: strike,
Whit.--Changed "T--" and "t--" to spell the word "turd."

- p. 237: marry s-- o' your hood--Changed "s--" to "shite" using the
spelling in the Folio.

- p. 237: t-- in your teeth for a fee, now.--Changed "t--" to "turd".

- pp. 253-60: In keeping with the Folio, the character titles of the
puppets have been changed so that "PUP." precedes the abbreviated
name. For example, "LEAN." (short for "LEANDER") has been changed to

- p. 254: LEATH. _How, Hogrubber of Pickthatch._--In keeping with the
Folio, changed the period at the end of the sentence to a question

- p. 257: Italicized Leatherhead's speech beginning "How, some wine
there!" for consistency in italicizing text that is part of the puppet

- p. 257: PUP. HERO. _Kiss the whore o' the a--._--Changed "_a--_" to

- p. 257: _You must kiss her o' the a--, she says._--Changed "_a--_"
to "_arse_".

- p. 260: you also, young man [_to Edgeworth_] shall be my care; stand
there.--Changed "_Edgeworth_" to "_Edgworth_" for consistency.

- p. 261: witness this easy and honest young man, [_pointing to
Edge_]--[_to Knock._] Now, thou esquire of dames--Changed "_Edge_" to
"_Edgworth._" and "_Knock_" to "_Knockem_".

- p. 261: _redde te Harpocratem._--Capitalized the "_r_" in "_redde_"
and changed the period to an exclamation mark in keeping with the
Folio. Overdo is pompously ordering Littlewit to be quiet. An English
translation is: "Turn yourself into Harpocrates!" (i.e., the god of

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