The nine Worthies of London Explayning the ho­nourable exercise of Armes, the vertues of the valiant, and the memorable attempts of magnanimious minds. PLEASANT FOR GENTLE­men, not vnseemly for Magistrates, and most profitable for Prentises.

Compiled by Richard Iohnson.


Imprinted at London by Thomas Orwin for Humfrey Lownes, and are to be sold at his shop at the west doore of Paules. 1592.

To the right Honourable sir Wil­liam Webbe Knight, Lord Maior of the famous Citie of London, Ri­chard Iohnson, wisheth health, with increase of honour.

BEING not altogether (right honorable) vnac­quainted with the fame of this wel gouerned ci­tie, the heade of our English florishing com­mon wealth: I thought nothing (considering it somewhat tou­ched my dutie) could be more accepta­ble to your Honour, then such principles as first grounded the same as well by do­mesticall policie of peace, as forraine ex­cellence in resolution of warre. This cau­sed me to collect from our London gar­dens, such especiall flowers, that sauoured as well in the wrath of Winter, as in the pride of Sommer, keeping one equiuo­lence at all kinde of seasons. Flowers of chiualrie (right honorable I meane) some that haue sucked honie frō the Bee, sweet­nesse [Page] from warre, and were possessed in that high place of prudence, wherof your Lordship now partaketh. Other some that haue beene more inferiour members, and yet haue giuen especial ayde to the head, beene buckler to the best, and therby rea­ched to the aspiring toppe of armes: If your Lordship shall but like of it, procee­ding from the barren braine of a poore apprentice, that dare not promise moul­hils, much lesse mountaines, I shall thinke this by-exercise, which I vndertooke to expell idlenesse, a worke of worth, what­soeuer the gentle cauld kind, that are vn­gently inkindled, shall with ostentation inueigh. These (right Honorable) the nine VVorthies of London, now vnable to defend themselues, seeke their protection vnder your gracious fauour: and the Authour pricked on by Fame, to be patronagde for his willing labour, whereof not misdoub­ting, I humbly commit your Honour to the defence of heauen, and the guider of all iust equalitie:

Your L in all humble dutie to be commaunded. Richard Iohnson.

To the Gentlemen Readers, as well Prentices as others.

AL is not gold (Gentlemen) that glisters, nor all drosse that makes but a darke shew: so should copper some time be currant, & pearles of no price. Aesope for all his crutchback, had a quick wit. Cleanthes, though in the night he caried the watertankard, yet in the day would dispute with Philosophers. A meane man may look vp­on a king, and a wren build her nest by an Egle. In the games of Olympus, any man might trie his strength: and when Apelles liued others were not forbid to paint: So gentlemen, though now a dayes many great Poets flourish (from whose eloquent workes you take both pleasure and profite) yet I trust inferiours (whose pens dare not compare with Apollos) shall not bee contemned or put to silence. Euery weede hath his vertue, & studious trauaile (though with­out skill) may manifest good will. Vouchsafe then intertainment to this new come guest, his simple truth shewes he is without deceyte, and his plaine speech proues, he flatters not. He can [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page] not beast of Art, nor claime the priuiledge of scholasticall cunning: what he sayth is not cu­rious, being without any great praemeditation, or practise, more then his necessarie affaires would permit. If his vnpollished discourses may merit the least motion of your good liking, let the enuious fret, and the captious malice melt themselues, neither the obiection of Me­chanicall, by such as are themselues diaboli­call, whose vicious basenesse in a selfe con­ceyte presuming aboue the best, is in deede but the dregges and refuse of the worst, nor the re­proch of prouerbiall scoffes as (Ne sutor vltra crepidam) shall discorage me from proceeding to inuent how further to content you. And so trusting to my fortune, and ending in my hap, neither dispairing of your censures, nor fearing what the maleuolent can inflict.

Yours to commaund as he may. Richard Iohnson.

A Catalogue or briefe Table, declaring the names of these worthie men, and when they liued.

  • First. SIr VVilliam VValworth Fishmonger, in the time of Richard the second.
  • Second. Sir Henrie Pitchard Vintener, in the time of Edward the third.
  • Third. Sir VVilliam Seuenoake Grocer, in the time of Henrie the fift.
  • Fourth. Sir Thomas VVhite Marchant-tailer, in the time of Queene Marie.
  • Fift. Sir Iohn Bonham Mercer, in the time of Ed­ward the first.
  • Sixt. Sir Christopher Croker Vintener, in the time of Edward the third.
  • Seuenth. Sir Iohn Haukwood Marchant-tailer, in the time of Edward the third.
  • Eight. Sir Hugh Cauerley Silke-weauer, in the time of Edward the third.
  • Ninth. Sir Henrie Maleueret Grocer, in the time of Henrie the fourth.

To the Gentlemen Readers.

GEntlemen, being incouraged through your gentle acceptance of my Cynthia, I haue once more aduen­tured on your Curtesies: hoping to finde you (as I haue done hertofore) friendly. Being determined to write of somthing, & yet not resolued of any thing, I considered with my selfe, if one should write of Loue (they will say) why, euery one writes of Loue: if of Vertue, why, who re­gards Vertue? To be short, I could thinke of nothing, but either it was common, or not at all in request, At length I bethought my selfe of a Subiect, both new (as hauing neuer beene written vp­on before) and pleasing (as I thought) because Mans Nature (commonly) loues to heare that praised, with whose pressence, hee is most pleased.

Erasmus (the glory of Netherland, and the refiner of the Latin Tongue) wrote a whole Booke, in th [...] prayse of Folly. Then if so excellent a Scholler, writ in praise of Vanity, why may not I write in praise of that which is profitable? There are no two Countreys where Gold is esteemed, lesse than in India, and more then in Eng­land: the reason is, because the Indians are barbarous and our Na­tion ciuill.

I haue giuen Pecunia the title of a Woman Both for the termi­nation of the Word, and because (as Women are) shee is lov'd of men. The brauest Voyages in the World, haue beene made for Gold: for it, men haue venterd (by Sea) to the furthest part of the [Page] Earth: In the Pursute wherof, Englands Nestor and Neptune (Hau­kins and Drake) lost their liues. Vpon the Deathes of the which two, of the first I writ this:

The Waters were his Winding sheete, the Sea was made his Toome;
Yet for his fame the Ocean Sea, was not sufficient roome.

Of the latter this:

England his hart; his Corps the Waters haue:
And that which raysd his fame, because his grave.

The Praetorians (after the death of Pertinax) in the election of a new Emperour, more esteemed the money of Iulianus, then either the vertue of Seuerus, or the Valour of Pessennius. Then of what great estimation and account, this Lady Pecunia, both hath beene in the Worlde, and is at this present, I leaue to your Iudgement. But what speake I so much of her praise in my Epistle, that haue commended her so at large, in my Booke? To the reading wherof, (Gentlemen) I referre you.

The nine worthies of London, explaying the honourable exercise of Armes, the vertues of the valiant, and the innumerable attemptes of Magnanimious mindes.

WHat time Fame began to feather her selfe to flie, and was winged with the lasting memorie of mar­tiall men, the Oratours ceast per­swasiue Orations, the Poets neglected the pleasures of their Poems, and Pallas her self would haue nothing painted vpon her shield but Mottoes of Mars, and short emblemes in honour of noble atchiuements. Then the ashes of auncient Uictors without scruple or disdaine had sepulture in rich and golden monuments: and they that reacht the height of honour by worthie déedes, had their former basenesse, shadowed by deserts. Fame then fearing that her honour would faint, and her armour rust (for though she fauoured all professions, yet she chiefly dignified armes) on a sodaine, mounted into the ayre, and neuer stayed the swiftnesse of her flying course, vntill she pitched her feete vpon Parnassus forked toppe, whose springing Lawrels gaue shade, & shelter to her wearinesse. This was the fruitfull place where she plotted her flowrie garlands, to crown the temples of vertuous followers, and wreathes of renowme to illustrate vndaunted courages. Here like­wise remained her chiefe secretaries the ix. Muses, as in a seate of most pleasure best befitting their diuine perfecti­ons, whose necessarie aydes she alwayes craued, when occa­sion [Page] ministred any thing worthy record: and though the wholesome freshnesse of the ayre, the gréenenesse of the valleys, the comfortable odours of sundry sorts of flowers, the pride and bewtie of the trées, the harmonious layes of Nightingales & other birds, the variable delights of artifi­ciall bowers, and the musicall murmures of Christall run­ning fountaines, might wel haue inchaunted the roughest Cyaink, or crabbedst Malecontent to cheare vp his spirits, and banish melancholy passions, yet this Goddesse preten­ding businesse of importance, had such a care to effect it, as that she would not be ouercome with pleasure, nor yeeld to ease, (though in reason her laborious trauell did require rest) but painfully passing vp and downe, was not moued with the one, nor maistred with the other. At last as her busie eye pried euery way, she espied a path of Uiolets, whose tops were pressed downe with the steps of such as had lately passed that way: by this she coniectured the Nymphes were not farre off, and therefore following the tract their féete had made vpon the flowers, she was quick­ly brought to the head of Hellicon, where, in an arbour of Eglantine, aud damaske Rose trees, one twisted so cun­ningly within another, as hard it was to iudge whether nature or arte had bestowed most to the bewtifying of that bower. She found the Muses euery one seriously applying their seuerall exercises, whom when they saw (hauing salu­ted her with a dutifull reuerence) stoode attentiue (being well assured her comming was not without cause) what charge she would giue, or what shee would commaund to be registred. To whome Fame, to the intent they might not long bee in suspence about her sodaine approch, as well for that her businesse was impatient of delay, as to resolue their earnest expectation, spake in this ma­ner.

You néed not muse (gracious nurces of learning) at my presence in this place, because I vse not oftentimes to visit you, nor trouble your minds wt ambiguous imaginations concerning my purpose, since I seldome craue your furthe­rance [Page] but for memorable accidents: notwithstanding, for the varietie of matter requires not alwayes one forme, and still with processe of time as mens maners change, our me­thod alters, you shall perceyue I am not now to begin: but to reuiue what ignorance in darknes seemes to shadow, & hatefull obliuion hath almost rubbed out of the booke of ho­nour. It is not of Kinges and mightie Potentates, but such whose vertues made them great, and whose renowne sprung not of the noblenes of their birth, but of the notab [...]e towardnesse of their well qualified mindes, aduaunced not with loftie titles, but praysed for the triall of their heroycal truthes: of these must you indite, who though their states were but meane, yet dooth their worthie prowesse match superiours, and therefore haue I named them Worthies. Nine were they in number, their Countrie England, the Citie they liued in famous London, famous in deede for such men, and yet forgetfull to celebrate the remembrance of their names, and negligent, (I may say) in performing the like attempts, hauing for imitation such goodly presi­dents as these to supplie them that want, with wisedome, and with better instruction. I am determined to discourse againe what I haue often bruted, thereby to stirre vp sluggards, and to giue secure worldlings to vnderstande (who extends no further then for wealth, and whose hearts suppose a heape of coine the greatest happines) that the cen­sure of honour ought to increase, when as by substance they arise to authoritie, and none so abiect but may be made a subiect of glorie and magnanimitie, if so thereunto they will bend their endeuours.

For performance hereof, I knowe my theame so large, and copious, as all your wits might ingenerall be imployed to dilate and expresse the same, yet onely Clio shall be suf­ficient, whome alone I make choise off, the rather because it chiefly concernes hir, and so beckning towards her with her head, made an end of her speach.

She had no sooner sayd, but all the rest as satisfied in that they desired to know, presently cast down their lookes, [Page] that were before stedfastly fixed vpon the browes of Fame, and began to turne to their labours, which all this while by reason of her talke they had intermitted, onely Clio clasping vp her booke of famous hystories, and taking her golden pen in hand, rose from the seate where she sate, and leauing her sisters with due reuerēce, was readie to folow Fame where so euer she would conduct her.

At the doore of the enterance into the Arbour, there stoode a siluer chariot drawne by the force of Pegasus, which Fame of purpose had prouided, because Clio therein might the bet­ter keepe wing with her. Into the which she was no sooner mounted, but straightway as swift as the burning dartes of Iupiter, they made their passage through the subtle ayre, vntill they soared ouer the hollow vault, through which the way leadeth down to the rule of vnder earth: there Clio pul­led her rayne, and with a headlong fall (according to her guides direction) neuer staied vntill the stéely house of Pe­gasus did beate against the gates of Tartara, where being receyued in, they left the crooked thornie way smoking with sulpher, and neuer ceasing contagious vapours, and kept directly on the other side, which delighted their eyes with so many glorious sights, that before they knew it, they were arriued vnder the Elesian shades: where when the Goddes had remained a while, discoursing with her companion the seuerall habitations, as that of louers in swéete groues of muske she spide at last the place where Electrum growes, swéetned continually with burning baulme boughes, with which braue souldiours, and warlike cauilliers cured their ranck scatres. There did shee shake her bright immortall wings, and with the melodious noyse, and with the sweet breath was fanned frō those Phoenix feathers she awaked nine comely knights, yt arme in arme vpon a greene banke, strewed with Rose buddes, had laid their conquering heads to rest in peace.

This, quoth she is the farthest end of our iourney, here must we take our stations for a while, and those whom thou seest eleuating their bodies from the ground, from whose [Page] browes sparkle gleames of immortall glorie, are the nine worthy Champions I told you of, whom, as by my power I haue awaked: so will I cause to speake and declare their owne fortunes, onely be thou attentiue, and set down with thy pen, what thou shalt heare them speake: and so cōming, to the first, which was a tall aged man, his haire as white as snow, vpon his backe a scarlet robe, his temples bound about with baulme, and in his hand a bright shining blade: she toucht his lippes with her finger, and straightway his tongue began to vtter these words.

Sir William Wallworth Fishmon­ger, sometime Maior of London.

WHat I shall speake, suppose it is not vaine,
Nor thinke Ambition tunes my sounding voyce;
It bootes not clay to stand on glorious gayne,
An other place bereaues vs of that choyce:
For when the Pompe of earthlie pleasures gone,
Our goasts lie buried vnderneath a stone.
Nor when I liu'd carpt I at Phoebus light
My deeds did passe without comparing pride,
Who shone the least (mee thought apear'd more bright)
I wisht it secret what the world discride,
Nor would now shewe (fayre Goddesse but for thee,)
The charge beseemes an other and not mee.
To ouerpasse then how I was instaul'd
To weare the purple robe of Maiestrate,
It shall suffice I su'de not, but was calde,
Of Fortunes gifts let baser minds relate:
[Page] In such a time it was my chaunce to sway,
When riches quaild, and Vertue wonne the day.
In Richards Raygne the second of that name
Of Londons weale Liefetenant to his Grace,
Wallworth was chose vnworthie of the same
Within his hand to beare the Cities mace:
To Fishmongers the honour did redownd,
Whose brotherhood was my preferments grownd.
These were not dayes of peace but broyling warre,
Dissention spred hir venom through the land,
And stird the Prince and subiect to a iarre
Hated loue, Rigor dutie did withstand:
In such a tempest of vnbridled force,
As manie lost their liues without remorse.
For by a taxe the King requirde to haue,
The men of Kent and Essex did rebell,
Their first Decree concluded none to saue
But hauocke all, a heauie tale to tell:
And so when they were gatherde to a head,
Towards London were these gracelesse Rebels ledd.
What spoyle they made in Countries as they came,
How they did rob and tyrranize in pride,
The widowes cries were patterns of their shame,
And sanguin streames of infants blood beside:
For like the sea when it hath caught a breach,
So rusht these Traytors, past compassions reach.
So desperate was their rage as they preuailde,
And entered the Citie by the sword,
The towre wals were mightely assayld,
And prisoner there made headlesse at a word:
Earles manner houses were by them destroyd,
The Sauoy and S. Iones, by Smithfield spoyld.
All men of law that fell into their hands
They left them breathlesse weltering in their blood,
Ancient records were turn'd to firebrands,
Anie had fauour sooner then the good:
So stout these cutthrotes were in their degree,
That Noblemen must serue them on their knee.
In burning and in slaughter long they toyld,
That made the King and all his traine agast,
Such rancour had their stomackes ouerboyld
They hopte to get the Soueraignitie at last:
In deede his Maiestie was young in yeares,
Which brought distresse to him and to his Peeres.
Yet with a loyall guard of bils and Bowes
Collected of our tallest men of trade,
I did protect his person from his foes,
Where there presumption trembled to inuade:
It yerkt my soule to see my Prince abusde,
In whose defence no danger I refusde.
In these extreames it was no boote to fight,
The Rebbels marched with so huge an host,
The King crau'd Parley by a noble Knight
Of sterne Wat Tiler ruler of the rost:
A countrie Boore, a goodlie proper swayne,
To put his Countrie to such wretched payne.
This Rustick scoft at first the Kings request
Yet at the last he seem'd to giue consent,
Aleaging he would come when he thought best:
T'is well (quoth he) is all their courage spent:
Ile make them on their bended knees intreat,
Or cast their bodies in a bloodie sweat,
Begirt with steele, our gownes were laid apart,
Age hindred not, though feeble were my ioynts.
[Page] T'would make a fearefull coward take a heart
When Prince opprest a Countries cause appoynts:
Who would refuse, and death or grieuous paine
To follow him that is his Souenaygne?
The place appoynted where to meete these mates
(That like audatious pessants did prepare,
As if their calling did concerne high states,
With brasen lookes deuoyd of awfull care)
Was Smithfeeld, where his Maiesty did stay,
An howre ere these Rebels found the way.
At last the leaders of that brutish rowt
Iacke Straw, Wat Tiler, and a number more,
Aproacht the place with such a yelling showt,
As seldome had the like been heard before:
The King spake faire, and bad them lay downe armes,
And he would pardon all their former harmes.
But as fierce Lions are not tam'd with words,
Nor sauage Monsters conquered but by force,
So gentlenesse vnshethes a Traitors sword,
And fayre perswasions makes the wicked worse:
His clemencie prouoake, and not dismaide,
Because of them, they thought the King affraide.
And as a witnesse of their inward vice
Their tongues beganne to taunt in sawsie sort,
Obedience blusht, and Honour lost her price,
A modest shame forbids the fowle report:
How Presumption made these Caitifes swell,
As if the Diuels did bellowfoorth of Hell.
Their loathsome talke inkindle, angers fire
And fretting passions made my sinewes shake,
T'was death to me to see the Base aspire:
Such woundes would men in deadlie slumber wake.
[Page] Yet I refrainde, my betters were in place,
It were no maners Nobles to disgrace.
But when I saw the Rebels pride encrease,
And none controll and counterchecke thier rage,
T'were seruice good (thought I) to purchase peace,
And malice of contentious brags asswage:
With this conceyt all feare had taken flight,
And I alone prest to the traitors sight.
Their multitude could not amaze my minde,
Their bloudie weapons did not make me shrinke,
True valour hath his constancie assignde,
The Eagle at the Sunne will neuer winke:
Amongst their troupes incenst with mortall hate,
I did arest Wat Tiler on the pate.
The stroke was giuen with so good a will,
It made the Rebell coutch vnto the earth,
His fellowes that beheld (t'is strange) were still
It mard the manor of their former mirth:
I left him not, but ere I did depart,
I stabd my dagger to his damned heart.
The rest perceiuing of their captaine slaine,
Soone terrified did cast their weapons downe,
And like to sheepe began to flie amaine,
They durst not looke on Iustice dreadfull frowne.
The king pursude, and we were not the last,
Till furie of the fight were ouerpast.
Thus were the mangled parts of peace recurde;
The Princes falling state by right defended;
From common weale all mischiefe quite abiurde,
With loue and dutie vertue was attended.
And for that deed that day before t'was night,
My king in guerdon dubbed me a knight.
Nor ceast he so to honour that degree.
A costly hat his highnesse likewise gaue,
That Londons maintenance might euer be,
A sword also he did ordaine to haue,
That should be caried still before the Maior,
Whose worth deserude succession to that chaire,
This much in age when strength of youth was spent,
Hath Walworth by vnwonted valour gaind,
T'was all he sought, his countrey to content.
Successe hath fortune for the iust ordaind,
And when he died, this order he began,
Lord Maiors are knights their office being done.

WOrthily had this father of his Countrie the for­most place in this discourse, whose valerous at­tempts may be a light to all ensuing ages, to lead them in the darkenesse of all troublesome times, to the resurrection of such a constant affection as will not faulter or refuse any perill to profite his Countrey and purchase honour. Such was his desert, as euen then when good men dispaired of their safetie, and the verie pillars of the common wealth tottered: his courage redéemed the one, and vnderpropped the other: Martialists and patrones of magnanimitie, trembled at that which he beyond all expec­tation aduentured. Let enuie therefore retract the malice of her blistring tongue, which heretofore (and now not a litle) striueth by her contentious and ripening nature to obscure the brightnesse of their praise, and scoffe at their ingenious dispositions, whose education promiseth small: But yet when occasion hath required, haue performed more then they whose brags haue vapord to ye clouds. I wish the like mind, and the like loyaltie in all those that make the Citie the Nurse of their liues, and subiect of their fortunes, that London may continue stil that credite to be called the great chamber of her kings, and the key of her Countreys blisse. But to procéede, Fame hauing marked the grauitie, elo­quence, [Page] and orator-like gesture of this good knight during the continuance of his talke, was so well pleased as shee vowed to erect his stature, where in spight of al contrarious and maleuolent blasts of vertues carpers, it should stande immoueable: and Clio that had pend his speach, grieued she had not leysure (as she desired, and he deserued) to set down his actions in better and more ample maner: for alreadie another of the knightly crew stood vp readie to delate what Fame expected: therefore she was forced to let it somewhat rawly passe, hoping that the excellency of the matter, would excuse the rudensse of the rime.

The next being a man whom nature had likewise bew­tified with the colour and badge of wisedome and autho­ritie, as one on whom a greater power then Fortunes faig­ned deitie had bestowed, the fulnesse of worldly treasure, and heauens perfection, beganne accordingly to frame his tale.

Sir Henrie Pitchard Knight.

THe potter tempers not the massie golde,
A meaner substance serues his simple trade,
His workemanship consistes of slimie molde,
Where any plaine impression soone is made:
His Pitchards haue no outward glittering pompe,
As other mettels of a finer stampe.
Yet for your vse as wholsome as the rest,
Though their beginning be but homely found,
And sometime they are taken for the best,
If that be precious that is alwayes sound.
[Page] From gould corrupting poysons do infect,
Where earthen cups are free from all suspect.
So censure of the Pitchard you behould,
Whose glorie springes not of his lowlie frame,
Though he be clay he may compare with gould
His properties nere felt reproachfull shame:
For when I first drew breath vpon the earth,
My mind did beawtifie creations byrth.
I dare not sing of Mars his bloodie scarres,
It is a stile too high for my conceipt,
Yet in my youth I serued in the warres,
And followde him that made his foes entreat:
Edward the third the Phoenix of his time,
For life and prowes spotted with no crime.
From France returnd, so well I thriu'd at home,
As by permission of celestiall grace,
I rose by that men termd blind Fortunes dome
To such a loftie dignitie of place:
As by election then it did appeare,
I was Lord Maior of London for a yeare.
I vsde not my promotion with disdaine,
Nor suffred heapes of coyne to fret withrust,
I knew the ende of such a noble gaine,
And saw that riches were not giuen for lust:
But for reliefe and comfort of the poore,
Against the straunger not to shut my doore.
I could repeate perhaps some liberall deedes,
But that I feare vaine-glories bitter checke,
His plenties want, his haruest is but weedes,
That doth in wordes his proper goodnesse decke:
It shall suffice he hath them in recorde,
That keepes in store his stewards iust reward.
Yet for aduauncement of faire Londons fame,
I will omit one principall regarde,
That such as heare may imitate the same,
When auarice by bountie shall be barde:
Rich men should thinke of honour more then pelfe,
I liu'd as well for others as my selfe.
When Edward triumpht for his victories,
And helde three crownes within his conquering hand,
He brought rich Trophies from his enemies,
That were erected in this happie land:
We all reioyc'd and gaue our God the praise,
That was the authour of those fortunate dayes.
And as from Douer with the prince his sonne,
The King of Cypres, France, and Scots did passe,
All captiue prisoners to this mightie one,
Fiue thousand men, and I the leader was,
All well preparde, as to defend a fort,
Went foorth to welcome him in martiall sort.
The riches of our armour, and the cost▪
Each one bestowd in honour of that day,
Were here to be exprest but labour lost,
Silke coates and chaines of golde bare little sway.
And thus we marcht accepted of our King,
To whom our comming seemd a gracious thing.
But when the Citie pearde within our sights,
I crau'd a boune submisse vpon my knee,
To haue his Grace, those Kings, with Earles and knights,
A day or two to banquet it with me:
The king admirde, yet thankefully replide,
Vnto thy house both I and these will ride.
Glad was I that so I did preuaile,
My heart reuiud, my parts (me thought) were young,
[Page] For cheare and sumptuous cost no coine did faile,
And he that talkt of sparing did me wrong:
Thus at my proper charge I did retaine
Foure kings, one prince, and all their royalltraine.
Yet lo this pompe did vanish in an houre,
There is no trusting to a broken staffe,
Mans carefull life doth wither like a flower,
The destenies do stroy what we do graffe:
For all his might, my gold wherewith I pleasde,
Death tooke vs both and would not be appeasde.
Of all there now remaines no more but this,
What vertue got by toyling labours paine,
To shrine our spotlesse soules in heauenlie blisse,
Till to our bodies they returne againe.
What else we find is vaine and worthlesse drosse,
And greatest getting but the greatest losse.

AFter that Clio had writ what this famous knight had tolde, shee no little wondred at his modest audacitie. Therefore she sayde this to Fame, Renowmed Goddesse enemie to the fatall sisters, aud onely friend to the good de­seruers: it were beséeming thy excellencie to procéede al­togither with the honourable acts of these memorable men, and onely touch their vertuous endeuours, whereunto the Goddesse condiscended: and séeing another lift vp his head, as if he were desirous to speake: Fame heartned him on with smiling countenance to say as followeth.

Sir William Seuenoake.

MY harmelesse byrth misfortune quite contemd,
And from my pappe did make my youth a pray,
So scarcely budd, my branches were vnstemd;
My byrth howre was Deathes blacke and gloomie day:
Had not the highest stretched forth his might
The breake of day had beene the darkest night.
Some Monster that did euie Natures worke
(When I was borne in Kent) did cast me foorth
In desert wildes, where though no Beast did lurke
To spoyle that life, the Heauens made forwoorth:
Vnder seauen Oakes yet mischiefe flung me downe,
Where I was found and brougha vnto a towne.
Behold an ebbe that neuer thought to flowe;
Behold a fall vnlikelie to recouer;
Behold ashrub, a weed, that grew full lowe;
Behold a wren that neuer thought to houer:
Behould yet how the highest can commaund,
And make a sand foundation firmelie stand.
For when my infants time induste more yeares
After some education in the schoole,
And some discretion in my selfe appeares
With labor to be taught with manuall toole:
To learne to liue, to London thus being found,
Apprentise to a Groser I was bound.
To please the honest care my master tooke,
I did refuse no toyle nor drudging payne,
[Page] My handes no labor euer yet for sooke
Whereby I might encrease my masters gayne:
Thus Seuenoake liud (for so they cald my name,)
Till Heauen did place mee in a better frame.
In time my prentise yeares were quite expirde,
And then Bellona in my homelie brest,
My Countries honour with her flames had firde,
And for a Souldior made my fortune prest:
Henry the fifi my King did warre with France,
Then I with him his right to readuance.
There did couragious men with loue compare
And striue by armes to get their Prince renowne,
There sillie I like thirstie soule did fare
To drinke their fill, would venter for to drowne:
Then did the height of my inhaunst desire,
Graunt me a little leasure to aspire.
The Dolphyne then of Fraunce a comelie Knight,
Disguised, came by chaunee into a place,
Where I well wearied with the heare of fight,
Had layd me downe (for warre had ceast his chace)
And with reproachfull words, as layzie swaine,
He did salute me ere I long had layne.
I knowing that he was mine enemie
A bragging French-man (for we tearmd them so,
Ill brookt the proud disgrace he gaue to me,
And therefore lent the Dolphyne such a blow:
As warmd his courage well to lay about,
Till he was breathlesse (though he were so stout.)
At last the noble Prince did aske my name,
My birth, my calling, and my fortunes past,
With admiration he did heare the same,
And so a bagge of crownes to me he cast:
[Page] And when he went away he saide to mee,
Seauenoake be prowd the Dolphyn fought with thee.
When English had obtainde the victorie,
We crossed backe the grudging seas againe,
Where all my friends supposed warre to be
For vice and follie, virtues onelie bane:
But see the simple how they are deceaude,
To iudge that honour, Honour hath bereaud.
For when my Souldiors fame was laid aside,
To be a Grocer once againe I framde,
And he which rules aboue my steps did guide,
That through his wealth Seuenoake in time was famde
To be Lord Maior of London by degree,
Where iustice made me sway with equitie.
Gray haires made period vnto honours call,
And frostie death had furrowed in my face,
Colde Winter gashes, and to Sommers fall,
And fainting nature left my mortall place:
For with the date of flesh my life decayde,
And Seuenoake dide: (for euery flower must fade.)
By Testament in Kent I built a towne,
And briefly calde it Seuenoake, from my name,
A free schoole to sweete learning, to renowne
I placde for those that playde at honours game:
Both land and liuing to that towne I gaue,
Before I tooke possession of my graue.
Thither I bare my flesh, but leaue my fame,
To be a president for London wights,
And you that now beholde faire Vertues maime,
Thinke he is happie for his Countrey fights,
For, for my guerdon to this pleasant field,
My carkas did my dying spirit yeeld.

[Page] BY that time this famous man had thus innobled his name by telling his nature, the pitifull and louely Muse had delated at large his eternall honour, hauing in no part béene nigardly of his prodigall prayse: but Fame dismissing him to his former rest, hard by a still siluer streame that beate warbling Ecchoes into the vaultie bankes, whereas deceassed Sea-nymphes vse to sport, pres­sing his manlike paulme vpon the ground, hee bent his comely bodie to the earth: where not as possessed with heauinesse, but with Paradice-like ioy he safely and swéettly reposed his comely limbes: like as the woonted Martia­lists of former memorie were accustomed to doe, when re­turning from hot encountred broyles, they vnbuckled their steeld enclosures to enioy the fresh and delightsome breath of peace. There they yt woonted to be of Pans musical Parliament, fayre Forresters and carrolling shéepheards, delighted, and almost inchaunted with this Champions storie, thought to present him with some short recreation, therefore vpon a bush of Iuniper brambles where Philo­melie had set her speckled breast, they all at once did beate with siluer wings: then from this swéete sauouring thic­ket rowsed the tripping Deare, and after them the nimble footed Fawne, wrestling together, once ouertaken with pleasing and delectable sport, rubbing their horned browes vpon their sweete twined bowers, this did they do in fauour of his birth, being cōmitted to their gouernments before his mothers milke had made him blithe.

This pastime put the famous Seuenoake in minde of his beginning, how Nature first had inniciated her worke in miserie, and ended it in miracles, not arguing herein her vnconstant kinde, but her prouident foresight to withstand the mischiefe of all misfortunes: and whilest Fame with her admiring Muse was busied in posing the rest, this me­ritorious man did please himselfe with this Poem.

WHere Fortune had her birth the Sunne sate downe,
Yet gaue no liuing glorie to the childe,
[Page] She grew and gaue the God a golden crowne,
It pleased him not, for he was euer milde:
Yet drew she disposition from his throne,
That without her no wight can moue alone.

Then he betooke him to his former meditation, from whom he was first awaked: when another knight of that aduaunced crew, was by Fame assigned to speake, called sir Thomas White, the Goddesse cleaped him, who lifting vp his aged limmes, yet not decayed, sayd as followeth.

Sir Thomas White.

WHyte is my name, and milke white are my haires,
White were my deedes, though vaine is proper praise,
White for my countrie were my kind affayres,
White was the rule that measurd all my dayes:
Yet blacke the mould that coutcht me in my graue,
By which more pure my present state I haue.
I cannot sing of armes and blood-redwarres,
Nor was my colour mixt with Mars his hew:
I honour those that ended Countrey iarres,
For therein subiects shew that they are trew.
But priuately at home I shewde my selfe,
To be no louer of vaine worldly pelfe.
My deedes haue tongues to speake though I surcease,
My Orator the learned striue to bee,
Because I twined paulmes in time of peace,
And gaue such gifts that made faire learning free:
My care did build them bowers of sweete content,
Where many wise their golden time haue spent.
A noyse of gratefull thankes within mine eares,
Descending from their studies (glads my heart)
That I began to wish with priuate teares,
There liued more that were of Whites desert:
But now I looke and spie that time is balde,
And Vertue comes not, being seldome calde.
But sith I am awaked not to waile,
But to vnfolde to Fame my former life.
I must on forward with my single tale,
For sorrow will but breake the heart with strife,
White is no warriour (as I sayd before,)
Nor entred euer into daungers doore.
The English Cities and incorporate townes,
Doe beare me witnesse of my Countreys care,
Where yearely I doe feede the poore with crownes,
For I was neuer niggard yet to spare,
And all chiefe Burrowes of this blessed land,
Haue somewhat tasted of my liberall hand.
He that did lend to me the grace of wealth,
Did not bestow it for to choake with store,
But to maintaine the needie poore in health,
By which expence my wealth encreased more,
The oyle of gladnesse euer chear'd my hart,
Why should I not then pitie others smart.
Lord Maior of London I was cal'd to bee,
And Iustice ballance bare with vpright hand:
I iudg'd all causes right in each degree,
I neuer partiall in the law did stand:
But as my name was White so did I striue,
To make my deedes whilest yet I was aliue.
But my prefixed fate had twinde my thread,
And White it was, and therefore best she like it,
[Page] She set her web within a loome of lead,
And with her baulme of grace she sweetly dight it:
And with consent her sisters gaue this grace,
That White should keepe his colour in this place.

WHen this aged knight had peaceably (obseruing de­corum with his passed state) tolde his plame and vn­polished tale, in all points like himselfe, clothed with the fashion of his minde, vpon a bed of Lillies hee layde him downe, whose colour answerable to his snowie beard, made them take especiall delight in the simpathie of their quali­tie. Then sayde Clio, thou faire and swift foote Goddesse, winged with the Doue, and eyed with the Eagle, let me bee boldned (with thy fauour) to demaunde one question, which of all this noble companie, shall next dilate his life. Sweete Muse (quoth Fame) this knight, pointing to sir Iohn Bonham, sometimes apprentice to a Marchant in Lon­don. Your deitie, sayde Clio then (vnder correction) will mistake the placing. For this gallant liued in England in the time of Edward the first, & we are alreadie come downe so farre as Quéene Marie. Therein, sayde Fame, wee doe preferre their age, and the honour of their calling, before the obseruation of time which derogates from no other course then that which sometimes our Poets haue vsed, placing e­uer the worthiest formost, as to induce the rest by example, not to be starke for want of courage. Therefore it shall not be vncomly or preposterous when the yonger knights shall speake after those that bare the honour of the Maioraltie.

This excuse wel contented the labouring Muse, who fra­ming her golden pen in her fingers, fixed it ready to her me­moriall leaues, whilest Fame did rouse this worthie from his rest. A man of stature meane, in countenance milde, in speach man-like, and in performance couragious: his beard Abron, and his bodie bigge, and thus he began, when Fame had giuen him caueat to speake.

Sir Iohn Bonham knight.

LEt them that pull their quils from Griffons wings,
And dippe them in the bloud of Pagans bane,
Let them describe me from the brest that sings,
A Poem of bloudie showers of raigne:
And in my tale a mournefull Eleagie,
To such as do the lawes of God denie.
A gentleman I am of gentle blood,
A Knight my Father was, yet thought no scorne
To place his sonne within a prentise hood,
For nature will appeare as she was borne:
A Deuonshire man to London loe I came,
To learne to traffique of a Marchant man.
Shortelie from thence to Denmarke was I bound,
Well shipt with ware my master gaue in charge,
I deemd the water better then the ground,
And on the seas a man might see at large:
Me thought that Fortune there might flie her fill,
And pitch and light vpon what place she will.
Ariud at last, in Denmarke was I sett,
Where Bonham did demeane himselfe sowell,
That though some strangers there had pitcht a nett
To catch my feete, themselues therein soone fell:
And such dishonour dropt vpon their head,
As they their natiue Countrie quicklie fled.
My worthlesse Fame vnto the King was brought,
Who shewd himselfe both mild and debonare,
[Page] A cause of gracious kindnes still he sought,
And for my Countrey did commend my care:
And though I say it, that might better cease,
Bonham did purchase fame, and loues encrease.
A vertuous Ladie, and a curteous prince,
This famous king vnto his daughter had,
Hir countenance did the baser sort conuince,
Yet did she bare her gently to bad:
Such was her beautie, such was her grace and fauour,
That watchfull Enuy no way could depraue her.
Excepting still the praise of Proserpine,
I may a little glance vpon her grace,
The words shee spake did euer seeme diuine,
And Nature chose her alters in her face:
Where in the day her golden flames do burne,
And they that gaze shall frie except they turne.
There bodies once consum'd, loue tooke their soules,
And there satte binding them within her haire,
She neede not frowne, her smoothest lookes controles,
See how shee slayes, yet dooth the guiltlesse spare:
Guiltlesse they are that dare not stay so long,
To heare the musick of inchaunting song.
Should I but speake the words vnto her face,
Perhaps you would suppose I flatter her,
If so I haue too long vpheld the chace,
And negligentlie spard the pricking spurre:
In whose sweete praise I end not yet begunne,
Because my lame conceipt wants feete to runne.
Who will not iudge the brauest Denmarke Knights,
Will cracke their Lances in her proud defence,
And now by this a troope of worthie wights
Prepared Iustes, her beawtie to incence:
[Page] And vnto me vnworthie me she gaue,
A fauour to adorne my courage braue.
I know your ielouslie will iudge me nowe,
And say I prais'd her for her fauours sake,
Alas he lookes not vp, is bound to bowe,
A Ceader neuer springeth from a Brake:
It pleasd her well age not displeased mee,
Why then should Enuie still with Honour bee.
They that haue guiders cannot chuse but runne,
Their Mistresse eyes doe learne them Chiualrie,
With those commaunds these Turneys are begunne,
And shiuerd Launces in the ayre do flie:
No more but this, there Bonham had the best,
Yet list I not to vaunt how I was blest.
Each Knight had fauour bound to his desart,
And euerie Ladie lent her loue a smile,
There boldly did I not my selfe insert,
Nor secret practise did my pride compile.
But of her selfe the gentle Princesse gaue
Rewarde of Honour vnto me her slaue.
In fine my Masters shippe with goods were fraught,
And I desirous to returne agayne,
For all the fauours that my Fortune wrought,
Vnto my Masters businesse was no mayne:
But so occasion trusty friend to time,
Prepard me steps, and made mee way to clime.
Great Solimon the Turkish Emperor,
Made sodaine warres against the Danish King,
And most vnlike a noble Emperour
Did spoyle and ruine to his confines bring:
A thing vnlike, yet truth to witnesse call,
And you shall finde hee made mee Generall.
A puissant armie then was le [...]ted straight,
And skilfull pilars sent to guide my ship,
Imagin but a Christians deadly hate,
Against the heathen that our blood doth sip.
Then thinke how Bonham bent against the Turke,
Wrought wonders by the high almighties worke.
Halfe of his armie smouldred with the dust,
Lay slaughtred on the earth in gorie blood,
And he himselfe compeld to quell his lust,
By composition for his peoples good
Then at a parlie he admirde me so,
He made me knight, and let his armie go.
He gaue me costly robes, and chaines of golde,
And garded with his Gallies sent me backe:
For Fame vnto the Danish King had tolde,
My gotten glorie, and the Turkish wracke:
He gaue me gifts in guerdon of my fight,
And sent me into England like a knight.
How I was welcomd there t'were vaine to tell,
For shortly after life had runne his race,
And hither was I summoned to dwell,
My other fellow Worthies to embrace:
Thus gently borne, a Marchant by my trade,
And in the field Bonham a knight was made.

CLio with the straungenesse of this report, was wrapt so much into admiration (both in respect of his feature, fortune and faire tongue) as she séemed cast into a traunce, neuer remoouing her eyes from of his youthfull face, till Fame perceyuing her déepe cogitations, put herforth of her dumps, by asking her why she pawsed so long, her chast eyes (it appeared) hauing all this while séene no other but such, whose countenance resembled winters frosts, began now with the chearefull heate of this flowring spring, to [Page] waxe warme with secrete working of some amorous pas­sion to excuse with suspition (for it stoode with her cre­dite not to bée faultie in any such idle toy) shee answe­red, it was not the inticement of any misbeseeming phan­tasie that allured her to that sodaine silence, but onelie a kinde of conceyte shee fostered, howe it coulde be possible that the Turke being a man of nature barbarous and cru­ell, and especially towardes Christians) should nowe bee so much mollifyed, and brought from his wonted fierce­nesse, to fauour and honour one, whome by by nature hee loathed and detested. For what though Bonhams valour had gotten that aduantage, as by reason and law of armes he might inforce the Turke confesse, the safegarde of his life depended on his clemeneie, yet since the brutishnesse of that nature esteemeth of vertue but to serue their owne lust and profite, I sée no argument of likelihoode, why the Turke hauing his aduersarie in his Court, that a little before had made him bowe, not with gentle per­swasions, bue with downe-right strokes, should not ra­ther bée incensed to cutte off his head, then doe him the least good in the world: so seuere is the regarde of honour, as rather then it will be vpbrayded with disgrace (though that disgrace were cause of many incomparable plea­sures) no hatefull, vnnaturall, or vngratefull practise shall be attempted, til the eyesore of their grudging heart be re­moued, and Princes if they cannot heare words, much lesse will put vp wounds, and that was it (quoth she) that trou­bled my serious Muse.

As these wordes Fame began to frowne, her pacience was prouoked, that one so well instructed in the know­ledge of such matters as shée was (her whole studie con­sisting of nothing else but of ciuill discipline) should make a doubt in so slender a contrarietie, yet to cutte off fur­ther protraction of time, shee replyed her this resolution: that shee was sure shée could not be ignoraunt, howe that it was the affect of vertue that wrought such an altera­tion in the Turke, which, as it is diuine, descended from [Page] the Goddes: so it worketh beyonde the expectation of men. And for proofe thereof, alreadie sundrie authori­ties were alledged, as that of Dyonisius whose murthe­rous minde coulde not but reuerence Plato, although hee continually inueighed bitterly agaynst his tyrannie, and that of Alexander, who loued Darius for his fortitude, although hee was his enemie. Therefore it ought not seeme miraculous vnto her, when vsually such accidents, as those followe Vertues fauourites: But (quoth she) I rather thinke you were amazed to heare such rare exploits procéede from a Prentice, and one of no more experience: but let not that seeme straunge, hee spake no more then truth, nor all that might be sayd concerning his ha [...]htie endeuours: the other foure whom you see on his left hand, will (if you seeme incredulous) confirme a possibilitie in his speaches: they are of the like condition and qualitie as he was, prentices that purchased estimation by the sworde. Clio blushed that shee had beene so inquisitiue: but as it may be coniectured, it was not so much for her owne satis­faction, as to take away hereafter all controuersie, and néedlesse cauillation as might concurre by the curious view of such as shoulde fortune to haue the reading of her lines. By this sir Iohn Bonham had coucht himselfe againe in the bedde of his secure rest, when another gay knight, sterne in his lookes, and strong set in his limmes, carying in his browes the picture of Mars, and in his maners the maiestie of a Prince, with a lowe salutation made himselfe knowne by this briefe oration.

Sir Christopher Croker knight of London Vintner.

IT is not birth that makes a man renownde,
Nor treasures store that purchaseth our fame,
[Page] Bigge words are but an emptie vessels found,
And death is better then a life with shame.
This proueth Croker in his trauailes made,
Of London once a Vintner by his trade.
In Gracious-streete there was I bound to serue,
My masters name hight Stodie in his time,
From whom in dutie I did neuer swarue,
Nor was corrupted with detested crime:
My education taught me so to liue,
At by my paines my maisters purse might thrine.
My fellow seruants lou'd me with their hearts;
My friends reioyc'd to see me prosper so,
And kind Doll Stodie (though for small deserts)
On me vouchsaft affection to bestow:
Whose constancie was such that for her sake,
No toyle was grieuous I did vndertake.
Such was my state as I my selfe could wish,
Deuoid of care, not toucht with egr [...] want,
My sleepe secure, my foode choise bewties dish,
Onely in this my pleasure seemed scant,
That I vnable was her state to raise,
That was the lengthner of my happie dayes.
Whilst thus I was perplexed owth that thought,
Behold how Fortune fauourde my desire,
Of sodaine warres the ioyfull newes was brought,
And Edward ayde of Souldiers did require,
Amongst the rest it fell vnto my chaunce,
That I was prest to follow him to Fraunce.
My master would haue sewd for my discharge,
His daughter with her teares gan me assaile,
On euery side they prayd and promist large,
But nothing could in that respect preuaile:
[Page] Such thirst of honour spurd my courage on,
I would to warres although I went alone.
My forwardnesse perceyu'd, my valour knowne,
Ouer a band of Souldiors I was chiefe,
Then sproute the seedes that were but lately sowne,
My longing soule had quickly found reliefe:
I sparde no cost, nor shrunke for any paine,
Because I ment my Loue should reape the gaine.
To proue my faith vnto my Countries stay,
And that a prentice (though but small esteemd,)
Vnto the stoutest neuer giueth way,
If credite may by triall be redeemd:
At Burdeaux siege when other came too late,
I was the first made entrance through the gate.
And when Don Peter driuen out of Spaine,
By an vsurping Bastard of his line,
He crau'd some helpe his crowne to reobtaine,
That in his former glorie he might shine:
Our king ten thousand seuerd from his host,
My selfe was one, I speake it not in boast.
With these Don Peter put the Bastard downe,
Each Citie yeelded at our first approch,
It was not long ere he had got the crowne,
And taught his wicked brother to encroch:
In these affaires so well I shewd my might,
That for my labour I was made a knight.
Thus labour neuer looseth his reward,
And he that seekes for honour sure shall speed,
What crauen mind was euer in regard?
Or where consisteth manhood but in deed?
I speake it that confirmd it by my life,
And in the end Doll Stodie was my wife.

[Page] This Worthie hauing finished his taske sette downe by Fame, to confirme the order of his first honour, reposed himselfe amongst the rest, where he found a sweete mur­muring of priuate and secrete conference what had passed by the seuerall annotations of euerie ones prayse, where they beganne (contemning the order of enuie) to colaude the endeuours of one anothers actions, none particularly arrogating in arrogancie the prayse of himselfe, to him that did most, they gaue most applause, and so swéetly concor­ded in simpathie, that all the Elesian harmonie might haue liberally commended their conditions: the hushing riuers were caulme without murmur or contempt: the leaues stood still to admire these famous enterprises, and excellent at­chieuements: the windes bound themselues vp in the con­tentation of voluntarie stilnesse, that they might be at liber­tie to hearken to these meritorious men, and yeelded them praise condescending to their paines. The Goddesse of darknesse (for enuie approched not the place, so that it was by that meanes continually day) whereby the Sunne was euer glorious in the pride of his height without grudging or any shew of declining: the bright shining of whose allu­ring countenance inticed another up, called sir Iohn Hauk­wood, or sit Iohn Sharpe, from the Italians, Iohn Acute, and from thence indéed he brought backe into England both his name and his noblenesse. The pictures of his renowne, for as an emblem of endlesse honour, the Venecians wrought vnderneath his stature, set vp in the citie, Giouanno Acuto Caualiero. This Iohn Haukwood knight, he liued likewise in the time of Edward the third, that Prince of famous me­morie: when he plesantly looked about him, being a man of a most couragious countenance, and an ingenious na­ture, thus he beganne to speake, as who should say he had wrong to be deferred so long.

Sir Iohn Haukwood knight.

WHo knowes my ofspring, doth not know my prime,
Who knowes my birth, perhaps will scorne my deedes,
My valour makes my vertue more then slime,
For that suruiues though I weare deaths pale weedes:
Ground doth consume the carkas vnto dust,
Yet cannot make the valiants armour rust.
After that eighteene yeares had toucht my head.
Being a Printice boy in Lumbard streete,
A Taylor by my trade, and I had lead
A few wilde yeares for striplings farre vnmeete:
A Souldior I was prest to serue in Fraunce,
The Prince of Wales mine honour to inhaunce.
I serude as priuate souldiour for a while,
Till courage made me greedie of renowne,
And causde me giue a noble man the foile,
That though with sturdie Launce did beare me downe,
On foot that day my selfe did keepe in chace,
Some worthie knights that feard to shew their face.
That day the Prince of Wales surnamde the blacke,
Did mount me on a gallant English steed.
Where I bestirde me so vpon his backe,
That none incountred me that did not bleed,
It was not I, nor Fortune, nor my fate,
His hand it was that seldome helpes to late.
His be the honour then, and his the prayse,
Yet haue I leaue to speake what Haukwood did,
When noble Edward had disperst the rayes,
And by his prowes of the French was rid.
[Page] Three more then If my selfe did make the fourth)
The gentle Princes then du [...] knights of worth.
His knights he tearmd [...]s still amongst the rest,
And gaue vs honour fitting our estate,
For England to be bound it seemd him best,
Because the French had swallowed Edwards baite:
I tooke my leaue, and begged on my knee,
That I might wander other parts to see.
The Prince inkindled with my honours heate▪
Discharging me, bestowde on me a chaine,
For still fresh courage on my heart did beate,
Which made me loue, and womens acts refraine▪
Hearing the Duke of Millaine was distrest,
To Italie my voyage their was prest.
The Seas I quickly past, and came to shore,
With me were fifteene hundred English men,
We marcht to Millaine walles, where we had more
Of other nations to conioyne with them,
There did the Italians tearme me Iohn Acute▪
Because I had their foes in such pursute.
Castels and towers I had for my reward,
And got enough to pay my men withall:
But I to hired pay had no regarde,
That prickt me on which climbs the highest wall,
Honour and Fame, whereof they gaue me store,
Which made me more audacious then before.
Millaine thus peac'd, the Pope oppressed Spaine,
Then thither was I sent to quell his pride:
Which being done I did returne againe,
And stoopt with age, in Padua Palace did▪
And he that yet will heare of Iohn Acute.
In Millaine shall not find the people [...]
All warres you see do ende as well as peace,
And then remaineth but a tumbe of dust,
A voyce of Fame, a blacke and mourning hearce,
To what then may we like this worldly lust:
It is an euill vapouring smoke that fumes,
Breaths in the braine, and so the life consumes.

WHen sir Iohn Haukwood had boldly presumed by Fames authoritie to speake, be layde him dawne like one that wreaked no guerdon for this grace, but as if Na­ture brought him foorth of dutie to performe these deedes. So ought euery martiall minde imagine, that he is borne for his Countrey, as the custome of the ancient and famous Romains was in all their actions, to studie to redounde the honour of their déedes to their Countrey. If this were am­bition and pride, it would be laid flat in the dust, magnani­mitie extolled to the highest tip of dignitie, and such a sweet concord and vnitie amongst men, that be would be counted most happie that liued longest, for the profite of his friend: when sit Iohn Haukwood of this perfection of minde had layde him downe againe, another of the same stampe cal­led sir Hugh Caluerley, as little ambitious as his fellowe, and as resolute in euerie degrée, arose, looking about him, being ignoraunt what to doe: but Fame iogging him on the elbowe soone awaked him from his maze, whose sup­pose was his desert, which made him couet to bee ob­surde. Therefore the Goddesse was faine to antimate him on further, before he would be perswaded to speake. Gentle he was and full of humanitie, insomuch that hee might haue wunne all the powers of that place to admire the basenesse of his profession being a weauer. But they that haue honour harbouring in their breasts, cannot but giue him the right of his due, except the traine of enuie see vpon the traine of honour, as commonly it doth if it do see he that shal for himselfe, and appeale to the most precise, whose wits being more busie then beautified with moral maners, thrust boldly, yet ignorantly vpon the well trained sort, ap­proching [Page] famous perswasion he began as sodainly as hee arose sodainly, as if now life had newly reuiued, began to breath this gentle breath from out his mouth.

Sir Hugh Caluerey knight.

WHo feares to swim a riuer dreads the sea,
But he that's best resolu'd dare venture both,
The greatest lumpe doth not the greatest die,
Base mettals to compare with golde are loth:
And why my quiet wit refraines to speake,
Is this because the tallest ship may leake.
In England late yong Cauerley did liue,
Silke-weauers honour merited by deedes,
In forraine broyles continually I striue
Of lasting memorie to sow the seedes:
As by experience they in Poland may
Expresse my English valour euery way.
After my Princes seruice done in France,
I was entreated to the Polish King,
Where as the Frizeland horse doth breake the launce,
And tamelesse beasts a valiant race doth bring:
There Maximilian hunted with his Lords,
Entangling mankind Beares in toyling cords.
There did I bring a Boare vnto the bay,
That spoyld the pleasant fields of Polonie,
And ere the morning parted with her gray
The foming beast as dead as clay did lie:
The Ladies cheekes lookt red with chearefull blood,
And I was much commended for that good.
Some sayd I looked like Olympian Ioue,
When as he crackt in two the Centaurs bow,
As swiftly footed as the God of Loue,
Or greene Syluanus when he chast the Roe:
They brought me crownes of Lawrell wreathd with gold,
The sweet and daintiest tongues my prayses told.
These fauours fronted me with courage frowne,
That like the yong Alcides I did looke,
When he did lay the greedie Lion downe.
No beast appeard when I the woodes forsooke,
So that the King supposd I was some wight,
Ordaind by heauen to expell their flight.
In scarlet and in purple was I clad,
And golden buskins put vpon my feete,
A casket of the richest pearles I had,
And euery Noble gently did me greete.
So with the King I rode vnto the court,
Where for to see me many did resort.
At Iustes I euer was the formost man,
In field still forward, Fame can witnesse it,
And Cauerley at tilt yet neuer ran,
But foming Steed so champed on the bit:
But still my horse his masters valour shewd,
When through my Beavir I with heat had blood.
Yet men of armes, of wit, and greatest skill,
Must die at last when deaths pale sisters please,
But then for honour Fame remaineth still,
When dead delights in graue shall find their ease:
Ye long to know the truth in Fraunce I d [...]e,
When from the valiant Polands I did ri [...].
Now honour let me lay me downe againe,
And in thy pillow rest my wearie head,
[Page] My passed prayse commaunds my soule remaine,
Wheerin these rosie bowers, with sweet dew fed:
Though I was valiant, yet my guiltlesse blood,
In crueltie of warre I neuer stood.

THus this aduenturous Martialist hauing exprest the zeale of his conscience towards his Countrey, the toyle and labour hee sustained to better the tredite of his first cal­ling, and the perils he waded through to patronage the an­cient name of Citizens, he reposed himselfe againe downe by the sides of his noble warre-fellowes.

Thus Fame and Clio (the one hauing marked his amiable partes and knightly gesture, the other delineated with her pen the eloquence of his oratour-like Oration) questioning togither some fewe poynts, concerning the force of va­lour, & the vertuous inclination of many obscure persons, that although they like sepultured (as it were) without re­garde, yet if oportunitie fitte them to reuiue their courage, will (like the Diamond racked out of clay) excell, or at least compare with the brightnesse of glories. Rarest iewels concluded that there was no pernition but by vertue, no climbing to honour but by Fortitude, and none base, abiect and ignoble but the vicious slouthfull, & faintharted milke­sops. They were not wearyed, nor séemed these former knights tales tedious vnto them, although many would thinke it a paine to bee tied to the hearing of so large a cir­cumstance, and verie few but would exclaime it were plaine slauerie to write such and so many seuerall conceytes from the mouthes of the speakers. Yet such was their desire to publish these mens deserts, and the delight they tooke to sée the increase spring of the seedes of vertue, for they would not take the finallest recreation, till euery one of the nine had fully finished their discourses, and therefore they atten­ded when the last would breath the secrets of his breast.

This was a Printice as the rest, and a Grocer, sometime dwelling in Cornehill, his face was not effeminate, or his parts of a slender or weake constitution, but by his lookes [Page] be seemed couragious, and in the height, strength▪ and faire proportion of his body, victorious. Thus being in al points armed like a champion, the verie aspect of his outwarde a­bite, made semblance both of manhood and curtesie, wise­dome and valour, knit in such a simpathie of opmyeration, that be séemed as much to bee loued for peace, as praysed for prowes: and thus with a voyce neyther too meane like a child, nor too big like a gyant, but indifferent betwixt both, he spake as followeth.

Henry Maleueret Grocer, surna­med Henrie of Cornhill.

A Precious cause hath still a rare effect,
And deedes are greatest when the daungers most,
It is no care that trauels dooth neglect,
Nor loue that hath respect to idle cost:
A Bramble neuer bringeth forth a Rose,
Where fields are fruitfull there the Lillie growes.
By this coniecture what may be the end,
Of his defensiue force that fought for Christ,
It is no common matter if we spend
Both life and goods in quarrell of the hiest:
The least desert dooth merit his reward,
And best employde should haue not worst regard.
No vaine presumption followes my deuise,
For of my actions t'is in vaine to boast,
Yet with the Pagans I encountred twise▪
To winne againe faire Sion that was lost:
Vnto which warre I was not forst to go,
T'was honours fire that did incense me so.
For when the Iewes opprest with heathens pride,
Of Christian princes craude some friendly ayd,
In euery Countrey they were flat denide
Saue that in England here their sute preuailde:
Such was the furie of intestiue strife,
All Europe sought to spoyle each others life.
And as in London there was order tane
To make prouision for the holy land,
My youthfull mind that fearde no forraine bane,
Was so admirde by might of conquering hand:
As for a single combate they did see,
Th'ambassadours made speciall choyse of mee.
Then for the Tankerd I did vse to beare
And other things belonging to mine art,
Mine hand did weeld Bellonas warlike speare,
For I was armde in steele to play my part:
A long we went to beard our daring foes,
That soone were queld with terrour of our blowes.
I neuer left the field, nor slept secure,
Vntill I sawe Hierusalem regainde,
To watch and labour I did still endure,
What ist that diligence hath not obtainde?
Yet grudging enuie valour to deface▪
By treasons malice brought me indisgrace.
The good that I had done was cleane forgot,
Ingratitude preuailde agaynst my life,
And nothing then but exile was my lot,
Or else abide the stroke of fatall knife:
For so the ruler of the Iewes concluded,
His Grace by [...] reports was much deluded.
There was no striuing in a forraine soyle,
I tooke it patient though t'were causelesse done,
[Page] And to auoyde the staine of such a foyle,
That slaunderous tongues had wickedly begunne,
Where to the holy well of Iacobs name,
I found a caue to shroude me from their blame.
And though my bodie were within their power,
Yet was my minde vntouched of their hate.
The valiant faint not, though that fortune lower,
Nor are they fearefull at controlling fate:
For in that water none could quench their thirst,
Except he ment to combate with me first.
By that occasion for my pleasures sake,
I gaue both Knights and Princes heauie strokes,
The proudest did presume a draught to take
Was sure to haue his passeport seald with knocks:
Thus liu'd I till my innocence was knowne,
And then returnde, the king was pensiue growne.
And for the wrong which he had offerd me,
He vowde me greater friendship than before,
My false accusers lost their libertie,
And next their liues, I could not chalenge more:
And thus with loue, with honour, and with fame,
I did returne to London whence I came.

THis valerous champion (hauing here made an end) bowed himselfe. Then Fame with her owne hand gent­ly laid his head vpon a soft downy pillow wrought with gold, and set with pearle, and so leauing him and the rest to the happinesse of their swéete sléepe, commanded Clio to claspe vp the booke, wherein she had wri [...] the deedes of these nine Worthies, and as her leysure [...] her [...] pub­lish it to the viewe of the world, the [...] read their honourable actions, and take exam [...] vp them to fol­low vertue, and aspire to honour, and the rather (quoth she) because I would haue malicious mindes that enuye at the [Page] deserts of noble Citizens, by proofe of these mens worthi­nesse to repent their contempt, and amend their captious dispositions, séeing that from the beginning of the world, and in all places of the world, Citizens haue flourished and béene famous, as in Rome, Caesar, in Athens, Themistocles, and in Carthage, Hannibal, with an infinite number more, that were by byrth Citizens, vp nature martiall, and by in­dustrie renowned: and so they departed from Elisian: and within a while after, Clio according to the charge was giuen her, sent forth this pamphlet of her Poems.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.