Written in Latine by ENEAS SYLVIVS; And translated into English by Charles Allen, Gent.


Printed at London by Tho. Cotes, for William Cooke, and are to be sold at his shop neere Furnivalls Inne Gate in Holborne. 1639.

EN EAS SYLVIVS To Marianu's Sozinus, Health.


YOur suit is unproper for my age, but to your owne repug­nant. For in an argu­ment of love, what can I who am almost fortie write, or you who are fiftie with conveni­ence heare? It is a thing which delights young spirits, and tires upon tender brests; but old men are as unfit auditors of Loves, as [Page] young men are of Moralls. Nor is there any thing more ugly than age, which shall serve Venus with an impotent devotion. Yet shall you finde some of these old ones in love, but not relo­ved, for they are equallie con­temptible both to maid and matron, nor was Woman ever taken but by the flourish of our yeares. If you shall bee taught otherwise, it is but a covert illu­sion. But I know that an amou­rous tractate doth extreamely misbecome mee, who having passed the Meridian of my time doe now post to my evening; yet is it not a greater indecencie for me to write than for you to sol­licite [Page] me. It is my dutie to obey, let it bee your care to see what you impose; for as there is the greater ripenesse of yeares in you, so it will be the great requi­tie in mee to subscribe to the Lawes of friendship: which if your justice feares not to violate by an injunction, my follie shall not doubt to transgresse by an obedience. Your good graces to mee have beene so many, that I cannot dare to deny you, al­though some looser wantonnes were implyed in the request, I shall therefore condiscend to your petition so often reitera­ted, nor any longer oppose that which hath beene sollicited [Page] with so much vehemencie. Yet shall I not, as your desire was faigne any thing, nor will I there be a Poet where I may bee an Historian. For who is so mad as to make use of a lie, who hath a truth can justifie him? Because your selfe have beene amorous, and have not yet that fire extinct, it is your pleasure I should com­pose the History of two Lovers.

This game somnesse doth hold
You from being reckond old.

I shall submit my selfe to your desires, but will not present you with fiction in so great a varie­tie of truths. For what hath the World so universally common? What Cittie, Hamlet or Family [Page] is barren of examples? What man arrived to thirtie hath not exploited something for love? I ground this conjecture in my selfe, whom love hath a thousand times ingaged, and Heaven hath disingaged a thousand times; in that happier than Mars whom Vulcan captivated in an Iron Net, & exposed a scorned spectacle to the Gods; but I shall rather touch at others loves than mine owne, least while I stirre up the Em­bers of my antient fire, I disco­ver a sparke still living. Yet will I give you the relation of a strange and almost incredible love, with which a noble paire were mutually inflamed, nor [Page] will I make use of old, and obso­lete examples, but discourse of the wanton fires of our owne age, which I will demonstrate to you in our owne Cittie, not Babylon or Troy, although one of the lovers was borne in a Nor­therne Climate. And perchance the story may furnish us with this benefit. For sithence the Lady which is our Theame, when shee had lost her love, breath'd out her soule in a mixt passion of sadnesse and indigna­tion, and the Knight was never after the master of any true con­tentment, it may bee a faire ad­vertisement to youth to desist from such vanities. And the ten­der [Page] virgin may bee informed by this accident not to lose her selfe in the pursuit of another. The narration may tutour young Gallants, that they ad­dresse not themselves to this kinde of war, where the Gall is so much predominant over the Hony, but that renouncing lasci­viousnesse which doth infatuate them, they would rather make vertue their designe, which is the onely possession that can make its possessour happy. If any man be a stranger to that infinitie of miseries Wch lie conceal'd in love, let him from hence correct his ignorance. Farewell Sr, and with attention heare that story which I by compulsion write.

THE HISTORIE OF Eurialus and Lucretia.

WHen Sigismund kept his Court at Sienna, it fortuned that upon the way to his Palace, which was adjoyning to S. Marthas Chap­pell, hee encountred foure Ladies whom feature and nobilitie, age and habit had almost made equalls, and in the generall repute not mortalls but Goddesses: Had there beene but three of them it had beene a pardonable er­rour to judge them for those, whom fame hath made Paris see in a vision. [Page 2] Sigismund, although old in yeares, yet young in desires was much addicted to the courting of Ladies, nor did any ob­ject beget in him a delight equall to that of an elegant beautie. At this sight al­lighting from his Horse he was enter­teined in their armes, and turning to his Courtiers asked if they had ever be­held such delicate peeces: professing that it was his doubt whether they were humane faces, for that their lookes were heavenly if not Angeli­call. The Ladies fixing their eyes up­on the ground by their modestie gave an addition to their beautie. For the red diffused in their Cheekes rendered such a colour, as the Ivorie of India distained with Vermilion, or the snow of Lilie married to the purple of a Rose. But among these Lucretia spark­led with greatest lustre, a Lady not yet twentie married in the family of the Camilli to Menelaus a rich Lord, unwor­thy to be the Gaoler of such precious­nesse, yet worthy to bee deceived by [Page 3] his wife, and to bee taught the note of Aprill; her stature taller then the rest, her haire thicke, which shee had not cast backe like a Virgin, but bound up in the rich imprisonment of Gold and Pearle, her forehead high, and of a comely largenesse, nor drawne through with a wrinkle, her browes daintily ar­ched with blacke, and few haires di­stracted from themselves with a just di­stance. Her eyes lightning with such a splendor that they put out the behol­ders; with these shee slew and made alive: her straight nose made an equall division betweene her checkes; nothing more amiable than these cheekes, no­thing more delicious, which with her smile were dimpled: Her mouth small, her lippes Corall, her teeth Christall, and when shee talked, it was not so much speech as harmonie. What should I speake of her chin or neck, see­ing that in the whole frame there was nothing but excellencie. Her exteri­our parts did speake her inward beau­tie, [Page 4] and so oft as shee was seene, so oft was her husband envied; besides shee was very facetious, and spoke like the mother of the Gracchi, or the daughter of Hortensius, and in her di­scourses modestie and sweetnesse stood competitours, shee made not a shew of honestie with a severe brow, but of modestie with a cheerefull one; nor bold, nor timerous, but attempted with a civill bashfulnesse; shee car­ried a masculine spirit in a feminine brest. Lucretia was the Theame of every discourse, and the Argument up­on which Cææsar and the whole Court imployed their Oratorie. When shee turned, the eyes of the spectatours tur­ned, as if they had no motion but what they borrowed from her: for her looks were as attractive as the ftraines of the Thracian Lyre, and led all in triumph after them. But Eurialus a Lord of Frankenland was transported with a desire more violently than any other a man most fit for love, whether you [Page 5] looked upon his face, or fortunē. His age two and thirtie, and his stature ra­ther comely than tall, his eyes shining and full, and his other parts graced with a kinde of majestie, answered each other with a most exquisite symmetrie. The other Courtiers were all impo­verished by the war: but Eurialus, who was rich both in his owne reve­new, and his Princes favour, saluted every day with a new bravery: his traine of followers great, richly appa­reled and gallantly mounted, so that he wanted nothing but leasure to awa­ken that gentle heate of the soule, Wch men call love. Let posteritie cease now to admire the tale of Thisbe & Pyramus.

For they were neighbours and th' adjoy­ning wall,
Might easily be their loves originall.

Eurialus is now no more his owne Master; he no sooner saw, but hee was set on more with what he saw, and his thoughts dwell no where but in Lucre­tia. But he meta reciprocall love; and [Page 6] this is the wonder, that in so great a raritie of perfections and choise of beauties, Eurialus should pitch upon none but Lucretia, and Lucretia fasten upon none but Eurialus: yet at the first either of them being ignorant of the others flame, either of them thought they were in vaine inflamed.

But neither of these had any know­ledge of the other, either by the eye or care: He was of Germany, the Lady of Thuscanie, and wanting the com­merce of Language, they discoursed onely with their eyes: Lucretia there­fore wounded with heavie paine and fed upon with hidden fires, forgetting now that she is a wife: and the memo­ry of husband lives onely in her hate; Thus cherishing her wound, and car­rying the figure of Eurialus deepely imprinted in her brest shee enters into this soliloquie with herselfe;

How is it that I now nauseate at my former diet: The imbraces of my hus­band are but hated confinements, and [Page 7] his kisses as the arrests of death: the Idea of that stranger who stood next Cæsar doth ever present it selfe to my imagination, yet if thou canst (poore Lucretia)

Out of thy brest which is yet chast,
Let such notions be effac'd.

O happy I if could, but a sweet violence leads me captive; judgement prompts one thing, but desire countermands it with another suggestion: I see what is best by the light of my reason, but pursue the contrary by the instigation of my passion. But what? nothing but a stranger rellish my pallate? must ano­ther world be the boundure of my ex­orbitancie? But alas, whom doth not that forme take, certainely it doth me: and I cannot, will not live if mercy be not the chicfe ingredient in his con­stitution, but shall I conforme my selfe to the appetite of a Travelour, who when he hath plentifully feasted shall rise and goe away without giving thankes:

[Page 8]
But now his worth nor sweetnesse of aspect
Doe threaten or oblivion or neglect.

Let me therefore dispell these mists of doubts and feares, and confident in the powerfull assistance of my owne beautie, presume him to bee my priso­ner, as I am his.

But shall I forsake mother, husband, & countrey? why not? shee is cruell, and he unworthy, and that is my countrey where I delight to live: but my repu­tation will suffer. But why should the buzze of fameawe me, since I shall not heare it: they dare do nothing who are so anxiously studious of their credit: nor am I alone in this kinde of love; Helen, Medea, and Ariadne are my precedents, and crimes passe unnoted in the uni­versalitie of the offenders. Thus di­sputed the Lady with her selfe, and poore Eurialus is melted with an equall fire.

Lucretia had a house adjoyning to the Court, so that Eurialus could [Page 9] not come to the Pallace, but he recei­ved a gentle influence shot by Lucre­tia from out some window: but so oft as shee saw him, so oft did shee blush, so that the Emperour read her love in those red letters, and passing by her house, he would sometimes pull downe Eurialus his hat in his eyes, as if hee envied him the fruition of so daintie a spectacle.

Lucretia being alone by herself would resolve to extinguish this new flame, yet his presence ever rekindled it, for his sight was both the fire and fewell.

As a dry field, once set on fire,
If the winds blow it, flameth higher.

So did Lucretia burne. True is that opinion of the wise, that chastitie is most religiously enshrined in a humble cottage; and lust the inscparable asso­ciate of great fortune inhabiteth the stateliest buildings. Lucretia having now often observed Eurialus, and una­ble to give her passion the checke, shee sate in counsel with her owne thoughts, [Page 10] what Cabinet to choose where shee might safely lay them up: For

He doth most torture feele,
That doth his flame conceale.

Shee had an old servant, by his name Sosias, by his countrey a high German; him shee intendeth to assault, not so much trusting the man as his nation. Cesar was then going through the Citie with a great traine, and when shee knew Eurialus was neare the house, shee called Sosias, and commanding him to looke downe, asked if the world would not bee posed to produce such another troope of young gallants, their compositions so strong, and yet so love­ly, somewhat troubled her faith to be­leeve, if they were men of that kind, which her native Thuscanie bred.

They are of immortall birth
And sent from heaven to earth.

Had fortune drawne me a husband out of this Lottery of men, although blind, yet could shee not have erred; should you have told mee thus much of your [Page 11] countrimen, I had given no credit to your relation, but now my eyes come in and confute my unbeleefe; I suppose that lying Northerly they are behol­den to the cold for much of their faire­nesse. But know you any of them said the Lady, he told her many; but Lu­cretia not willing to be long at Rovers, but to come more speedily to her marke, asked if hee knew Eurialus of Frankenland, as my self said Sosias; but why make you that question? I shall tell thee said Lucretia, and I know my secret will be under seale, for thy good­nesse bespeakes my confidence. It is hee in whom my soule mooveth, nor will my thoughts give any truce to my sufferings, untill I bee made knowne to him, let it bee your errand to tell him I languish for him; I aske you but this, and for this aske you what you please; what is this said Sosias that I heare? can I act, nay can I think such a villanie? shall I betray my master, and bee a knave now I am old, a name I trem­bled [Page 12] at when I was young; rather dis­possesse your brest of so uncleane a spirit, and follow not the counsells of your deluding hope: Love hath easily the repulse, if you make head against his first sallies: but who by flattering them­selves shall give ground to this sweete mischiefe, they sell their libertie to a most insolent master, and bind them­selves to one who will never give them backe their Indentures: your fire cannot be hid with so much secrecy, but my master will smell the smoke, and then the greatnes of the fault may give your expectatiō assurance what your punish­ment will be. Peace foole said Lucretia, in a heart prepossest with love there is no roome for terror: she feares no­thing, who feares not death, and is resol­ved to stand the malice of the extrea­mest event. But (replied Sosias) will you sullie the splendour of your fami­lie, or do you thinke it an honour to be the first adultresse of your house? nor must you imagine you can sinne, and [Page 13] securelie sinne. You have the guard of a thousand eyes about you, besides your husbands two, which have a faculty to discover secrets above that thousand; Your servants are but so many spies, and if you bribe them into a silence, yet may your little dog bark, and reveale the fact with his inarticulate Dialects: The bed, which was opprest with your lascivious weight shall bee a plaintive against you, and the curtaines will dis­close that lust which they did once conceale so closely. For it is a curse attending high crimes, not to finde where they may put affiance. But ad­mit you deceive the diligent observati­on of Espialls, yet you cannot bee mask'd from the vindictive eye of Hea­ven, which will penetrate into the most abstruse recesses. In your owne bo­some shall you carry your owne tor­menter, & the light of your conscience will ever waite upon the darkenesse of your sinne. I confesse these truths said Luerelia, but by the furious concitati­on [Page 14] of my spirits I am hurried to their contrary: I see the precipice, yet wit­tingly doe I precipitate. Love and fu­ry have usurped upon me, and will not suffer reason to bee interressed in their possession: Oft have I wrastled but in vaine, and therefore conclude to exe­cute loves Imperious mandates: by these white haires (said groaning Sosias) by this loyall brest, by my faithfull ser­vices I conjure you to curbe this passi­on, and in that bee your selfe your selfes best Physition: for the first de­gree of cure consisteth in your willing­nesse to be cured. Well Sosias (said Lib­cretia) modestie commands me to em­brace your counsell: I have but one refuge left, by death to prevent this mischiefe. Collatines wife with her dagger vindicated the fact committed, but by a nobler course of justice I will anticipate the commission. I shall never permit that, replied Sosias. But who (said Lucretia) can hinder a minde re­solved to dye? The noble Portia, de­prived [Page 15] of all instruments of death, swal­lowed downe burning coales, and by fire made a way to follow the ghost of her beloved Brutus. Nay (said So­sias) if you are possessed with so reso­lute a furie, my studies shall bee rather to provide for your life than your re­putation; for this fame is but a coun­terfeit glosse: the worst man may have a very faire one, and the best bee pub­lished with a harsh comment. I shall therefore assay Eurialus, and expresse all dilligence in the service: with these words her flame advanced, and her wa­vering minde anchord upon stronger hopes: but his purpose went not with his tongne; for he only intended to ex­tenuate her heat by delayes, and put her off with false loves, untill either the Emperour should leave the Citie, or she her resolution: Least upon her refu­sall, she might get her death, or a new a­gent, he often feigned to have bin with Eurialus, and that hee thought himselfe infinitely happie in her love, and laid [Page 16] waite for all occasion to have some conference with her: sometime he told her hee could have no accesse to him: sometime upon pretence of businesse, hee absented himselfe from home, and so frustrated her ficke soule with dila­torie evasions. But that hee might have one truth among so many lies, he once gave Eurialus a light intimation; O said hee, how extremely are you beloved? Then sodainely withdrew himselfe, and left the poore Gentleman unsatisfi­ed: but certainely Eurialus could give himselfe no rest, a stealthy fire consu­ming his veines, which did incinerate his marrow; yet little did hee know Sosias, and lesse did hee thinke that hee came from Lucretia. So incident is it to man never to have his hopes planted in so high a mounture as his desires: but at last seeing himselfe to be indeede in love, he severely beganne thus to call his judgement into question. Thou knowest Eurialus how Tyrannicall the Scepter of love is; a fit of laughter, [Page 17] with the penance of many a teare, a minute of joy bought at the deare ex­pence of a moneths feare, and a conti­nuall dying without a death; but at last instructed with many a triall, how vaine it was to struggle with his passion, hee cried for quarter and yeelded; comsorting himselfe with the conside­ration of the company, who before him had sought under the banner of Love. Hee remembers some of the great Masters in Phylosophy admitted in his Schoole, and Princes made sub­ject to his Empire, denying that asser­tion which denies,

That Majestie and Love,
In the same spheare can move.

Hercules (said hee) the indubiate seede of the Gods, disarmed himselfe at the command of his Mistresse, and chan­ging his Clubbe for a Distaffe, drew a thread with the same hand with which hee drew blood: for it is a passion na­turally implanted in all; the airie regi­ments are galled with this arrow,

[Page 18]
For the Turtle's lov'd, they say,
Of the greene Poppinjay.

And the cold inhabitants of the water have this hie[?], Bores by whetting their teeth, Lyons by shaking their manes, and the Harts by their bellowings give signalls of this furie: nothing is love­proofe, nothing impregnable to love. Why then should I rebelliously oppose a prescript of nature? No, since love is so universall a Conquerour, I am content to be his spoile; being now confirmed, his Quære is for some good old woman, that might carry a paper to the Lady, one at last by the assistance of Nisas (an excellent professour in that Science) was procured to convey his Letter, which spake thus.

Eurialus to Lucretia.

Lady, these lines should bring you health, if the Writer had any, but his health, and the hope of it, have a ne­cessary dependance upon your good­nesse. Above life I love you, nor can I thinke you a stranger to this truth, for [Page 19] you might see my love in my teares, and heare it in my sighes. Take it gra­ciously if I give you the Table of my thoughts: That beautie which hath seated you above comparison, hath surprised mee, and the Venus of your face hath brought mee into captivitie. I haue beene ever ignorant of this same love, untill you taught mee the lesson, and although I long contended to de­fend my selfe from this servitude, yet were my attempts ever subdued by your splendour, and the beames of your eyes more powerfull than those of the Sunne, mollified mee to an obedi­ence. I am therefore your Captive, and follow the triumphant Chariot of your excellencies: you have taken from me the use of repose, and repast; nay my selfe from my selfe: you are the subject of my meditations and the center of all my passions, it is you whom I feare and love, hope, and weepe for: you have al that I am, so that whilst I am divided from my selfe, I [Page 20] am undivided in you; you sit upon my life and death; let not your sentence be more cruell, than your eyes seeme mercifull: my letters begge onely this favour to have the honour to speake with you: the grant will bee my hap­pinesse, but the deniall my ruine; fare­well, Soule of my being.

These Letters, when his seale had en­joyned them secrecie, were by this woman dispatched with all speede to Lucretia, whom shee sound without any company, but that of her thoughts; Lady (said shee) this missive comes to kisse your hands at the directions of the noblest love in Cæsars Court, who humbly begs that you would be but as mercifull as you are faire. Lucretia knowing her to be a noted queane, was highly offended, not so much at the message, as the messenger. Thou fil­thy bawd (said shee) what boldnesse, or madnesse rather could counsell you to profane the threshold of a Magnifi­co's Pallace, and bring with you a lit­tle [Page 21] silent bawd, (a letter forsooth) to scale the chast brest of a ma­tron, and negotiate the violation of religious wedlocke. Were it not that I had my owne honour, in a higher esteeme than your desert, you should bid farewell to all Let­ters, and bee no longer the divells footpost. Be gone therefore with your packet: but no matter give me the Letters, and by their entertaine­ment let your hot gallant bee instru­cted how coldly his suit advanceth. The paper shee presently tore in peeces, and spitting upon it (for her teeth watred) threw it upon the ground, where shee kicked it up and downe, as if the very conceit would not let her hold her heeles still. and thus (said she) lewd woman shouldst thou bee used: but bee gone, and shew thy love to thy selfe, in thy care not to meete my husband, who will pay thee my debt with interest. [Page 22] The Bawd might have feared to have miscarried in the action, had not her experience taught her, that the strong desires of women were inseparable from their strong deni­alls. For the present shee ask'd the Lady mercie, and if shee had offen­ded, begd a pardon for her sinne of ignorance, but withall advising her not to commit the greater sinne of contempt, shee tooke her leave. So returning to Eurialus, Happie lover said shee, take up your Passion, and give your sorrow leave to breath. Time would not give her leave to vie Letters with you, but shee out­vies you with her love. I found her in a great fit of melancholie, but the powerfull name of Eurialus conjured her up, and the soveraigne receipt of your letters, which shee often kissed, miraculously restored her to her selfe. With that shee de­parted, and conscious of the foule [Page 23] play shee had showne him resolv'd to come no more upon that stage. Soone as the old Hag was gone, Lucretia finding the fragments of the Letter, set the dislocated parts, and with much questing retrived the lost words: so that shee made a legi­ble copie which a thousand times shee read, and kis'd a thousand times; then wrapping it up in a fine cloth, shee layd it up with her Iewels, but prizd it above them: and repeating now one word, now another, shee drunke love in deepely, and deter­mined to write to him: the minde of her letter was this:

Eurialus, Teach your hopes a lower ambition than to fly at a game which is not feasible: trou­ble not your selfe to trouble mee, but save the charge both of Letters, and messengers, which imply that you conceit me to be of their trade, who sell themselves, and are both [Page 24] their owne shoppes, and wares. Be disdeceived Sir, I am not shee for whom your errour mistooke mee, nor a woman to bee sued to by the mediation of a Bawd. Seeke to prostitute some other, I will bee the mistresse onely of an honorable love, doe with others as your plea­sure shall counsaile you. Farewell Sr. and let your requests to mee be both advis'd, and noble.

Although this Epistle seemed harsh to him, and of a straine diffe­rent from the Bawds relation, yet it opened a way to their mutuall commerce of Letters, for he could not but trust her, who had adventu­red to trust him: his ignorance of the Italian was a principall impedi­ment, but love made him so inge­nious, and so industrious, that in a short time hee arrived to a compe­tencie in the Language, so that ina­bled to bee his owne Secretary hee [Page 25] answerd to this purpose;

Lady; It is an act of injustice to be so highly offended with mee for that my Letters were presented to you by a hand so infamous: for seeing I was a stranger and knew it not, by the law my fact may bee excused by my ignorance. That I did send to you let, it be an imputa­tion upon my love, and such a love, as harbours nothing but honorable intentions. Let my confidence of your chastitie beget in you an assu­rance of my love: for I detest a woman that is prodigall of her ho­nour, of which being once despoi­led, shee is not the subject of any thing which can bee the subject of a commendation. Beautie is a good, no lesse corruptible than lovely, and if it wants modesty, it wants too ma­ny graines to bee current. But shee who hath joyned chastitie to her forme, hath inrolled her selfe in the [Page 26] list of the Gods. In you faire Lady is met this admirable union, the sole cause which hath Sainted you in his devotion, who would sollicite nothing that might prejudice your fame. Deigne me onely the libertie to speake with you, that my words may give you a full display of that affection, which cannot be bounded in the narrow limits of my Letter. This Epistle was accompanied with a present, rich for the materialls, and curious for the worke, and thus re­plied upon by Lucretia.

Sr. I received your Letters, and admit of your Apologie. That you love me is none of my wonders, for you are neither the first, nor the onely man that hath homaged to my beautie. Many have, and yet doe court me, but their travailes were frustrated, and doe not promise to your selfe any better event. To speake with you I neither can, nor [Page 27] will: to finde me alone is impossible unlesse you could assume the shape of a Bird, which is no lesse impossi­ble; for my lodgings are high, and a guard hath made all the entries in­accessible. I accept your token, and am wonne to that onely by the ele­gancie of the workemanship. But to let you know I will neither be in your debt, nor take it as a pledge of your love, I returne you a Ring with a stone in it of such a valew, that what you sent mee was rather sold than given. Farewell.

Eurialus returned this answer.

Excellent Lady, Your mercy hath set a Period to your complaints a­gainst the Bawd[?]: and in that is my joy: but you will not give entertain­ment to my disesteemed love, and in that is my torment. For although you are beleagred with a multiplici­tie of loves, yet none of them dare stand forth to parallell mine. Yet [Page 28] will not you beleeve this, which infidelitie ariseth from your severe refusall of conference; but were that permitted, it would beget faith in you and rectifie your opinion of my worth I could wish to bee un­mand into a bird, or rather (if wishes were effectuall[?]) to bee transformed into a Flea, and so not to bee exclu­ded by the narrowest crevis. But (deare Lucretia) Why say you, you will not speake with him, whose All is yours, and whose profession it is to bee such a servant as shall antici­pate your injunctions by his obedi­ence? O forget that same word I will not: and carry not[?] death in your mouth, and life in your lookes. Let not that sentence bee irrevocable, which pronounced that to love you was but to abuse my selfe and my time. Abandon this crueltie, and [...]urne your stile, or conclude to bee my murderer: for be confident that [Page 29] to mee your breath is more inevita­bly mortall, than anothers weapon. Love is the totall of my desires; but say, you love, and make mee really happie. How that meane present stands in your esteeme, I dispute not, seeing your acceptance hath set a price upon it above its first va­lue. Your Ring shall never from my finger, which supplies the place of your lips, and is kist for them. Fare­well my delight, and doe not envie me those joyes, which you may conferre upon mee with such faci­litie:

Having thus often bandied one to another, at last Lucretia tooke a pa­per, in which shee drew the coun­terfeit of her minde with these lines.

Eurialus, I could willingly entitle you to what I am, for your worth doth challenge love, and your gal­lant qualities command it. I speake [Page 30] not how I am surprizd with your beautie, and extasied with your face so full of Loves, and Cupids: Yet I dare not love, for were I once en­terd into those amorous lists I should observe neither measure nor meane: you cannot be here long, and I, if I once come into play, must alway be in action. The examples of those so many, forsaken by forreine loves, are my so many advertisements not to prosecute your love. Iason trea­cherously cosened Medea, by whose alone assistance hee finished the adventure of the golden Fleece: And Theseus whom Ariadne did ex­tricate out of the fatall Labyrinth, ignobly left that distressed Lady in an unhabited Iland, the worse La­byrinth of the two. I know what an inconveniencie it is to imbrace a strangers love, and untill I shall bee of the forlorne hope will not engage my selfe in so certaine a danger: [Page 31] you men are of a spirit more con­firmed, and have a greater com­mand over your passions: but poore impotent women! if they once take this fit of raging, nothing but death can bee Physicke to their phrensie: They are rather out of themselves than in love, and if they meete not a correspondent returne of affection, nothing so dreadfull as a woman in that furie: when this fire hath once insinuated, we respect neither fame, nor fate, and must ei­ther enjoy our love, or not live. The greatnesse of the want of what wee would have, addes degrees to the greatnesse of our desires: and wee expose our brests to the mena­ces of destruction, so wee may sate the impatient longings of our appe­tites. But I, who am as nobly mar­ried, as I was nobly descended, have decreede with my selfe to barri­cado all passages, and make good [Page 32] the place against the forcible entrie of love: and of yours in chiefe, who being a stranger may give mee as unworthy a farewell, as Demophoon did to the unfortunate Phyllis. Bee therefore over intreated not to sollicite my love, and to can­cell your owne, and if you doe love, make demonstration of that truth in desisting from a suit which inferres my ruine, as it's necessary consequent. Fare­well.

Eurialus not cool'd but heate with these Letters called for a Pen, and contrived this answer. All happi­nesse to my life Lucretia; you have restored mee to Health with the Dose of your Letter; yet was it not all Cordiall, but blended with some gall, which I hope shall be no ingredient in the next. I read it of­ten, and kist it oftner: but it seemes to intimate something contrary to [Page 33] your former overtures. It counsai­me not to love, because it is not ex­pedient for you to doe so, and this you would evince by the instances of some Ladies who have beene be­trayed by strangers; which you have done with such Rhetorick that you rather teach me to admire than to forget you; whilst you command me not to love you with eloquence, which commands mee to love you. The more I reade the more my flames advanced to see that delicate conjunction of wit, and beautie. To bid me not love is to bid a streame recoile into its first head, and to command a mountaine to hum­ble it selfe to a vallie. If Scythia can bee without Snow, or Hea­ven without motion; then can Eurialus bee, and his love not bee. It is not so easie for men to rake up their flames as you imagine, for what you [Page 34] ascribe to our sex, many have im­puted to yours. But I shall not re­ply upon you, rather answer to your induction, which from the treache­rie of some few strangers would de­finitively conclude mee false. You have musterd up some few authori­ties, but I could give you a Cata­logue of more forlorne soules, who have beene deserted and ruind by Ladies. Trotlus deluded by Chry­seis, Deiphobus undone by Hetena.

Ana Circe with her charmes, her lovers suits,
In skins of Swine, and hides of other bruites.

But it is bad Logicke to conclude universally from particular premis­ses: and if for the falsehood of two or three men you shall unjustly quar­rell all mankinde, by as good a con­sequence, for the perjuries of as few women, may I bid defiance to the whole sex. Some others love [Page 35] may supply us with a better coppie after which to write our owne: That of Antonie and Cleopatra was a love contracted betweene strangers, and yet inviolable.

How many of the Græcians at Troy were taken by those Ladies whom they had taken, and so powerfully deteined by those forreine loves, that by a miraculous kind of oblivi­on, they did forget their countrey, before they could forget their Mi­stresses. Deare Lucretia let these be your precedents, seeing he that now sueth for you will ever love, and ever be yours. Nor call mee a stranger, for I am Citizen of this place, by a better title than a Na­tive: for hee was made one by his fortune, but I by my choise. No countrey shall bee mine, but where you are, for your presence can make mee a free Denison of any place. When I goe from hence, my re­turne [Page 36] shall be speedy, for my jour­ney into Germany is but to settle my estate that my stay with you may bee the longer. I shall casily finde pretenses to reside here, for Cæsar hath many affaires of state in these parts, and I shall so prevaile with him, that their dispatch may bee commended to my care: some­times I will bee here in some Em­bassage, sometimes upon some other imployment: befides he must have a deputie in Thuscanie, and I dare give my selfe the promise of that charge. Therefore doubt not sweet Lucretia, the rather because you and my heart are convertible, and if I can be without one, I can bee with­out the other. At last therefore ex­tend your pitty to one,

Who like Snow dissolves away
Exposed to the sunny ray.

Take my languishment into your noble consideration, and at last set a happie period to my miserie. Looke [Page 37] upon my pale and extenuated body, and wonder that my soule remooves not out of so ruinous a habitation. Had I killed your father, your ingenious crueltie could not invent more exquisite tor­ments. Ah my Lucretia, how severe would you be against the prophane con­temners of your beautie, who thus trample upon your prostrate votaries. No longer continue my sufferings, but receive me into your grace, that I may be, and in that happy, the servant of Lu­cretia. Farewell.

As a Tower which broken within see­meth outwardly impregnable, suddainly falleth with the batterie of the Ram, so did Lucretia fall at this assault. And con­fident of his loyall integritie, shee re­veal'd her dissembled love, and un­mask'd her selfe in this Letter.

Eurialus, I can no longer make good the place against you, nor any longer de­ny you a place in the brest of Lucretia. You have won the field, and I am yours. I have made my selfe obnoxious to too [Page 38] many dangers, if I bee not secured by your providence, and fidelitie. Faithful­ly observe what you have written, for I come now to give you livery, and seisin of my love, and if you shall ever surren­der this possession you are a villaine, and a Traitour. It is an easie thing to over­reach a poore Gentlewoman, but the facilitie of the fact addes to the foule­nesse of it. As yet there is no hurt, and if you thinke me worthy of a desertion let me know so much before my flame bee enraged by the addition of a new vio­lence: and let us not at all beginne that which must bee concluded with repen­tance. In all actions the end is principal­ly attended by the agent: I have but little foresight the true character of my sex: but you are a man, and assuming to your selfe a double charge, must bee a guardian to us both. I present you with the dedication of my selfe, and honour your faith, to whose bosome I have let my love for terme of life, and not as te­nant at will. Farewell guide of my life, [Page 39] and starre of my course.

After this, many ejaculations passed betweene them, and never did Eurialus write so ardently, but Lucretia answered with an ardencie as equall. There was nothing wanting now but conveniencie of meeting, which seemed to be joyn'd with a kind of impossibilitie, the Lady being guarded with the observation of so many eyes. Argus kept not a stricter watch over the Heifer at the command of the jealous goddes, than Menelaus had set over Lucretia. It is the nationall sinne of Italy to immure and locke up their wives as they doe their mony, which wife men have thought to bee none of the best pollicies. For women doe most violently long after forbidden fruits: what you will, they reject, and your severest prohibitions are their hot­test pursuits: had they but the reines in their neck, they would not trip so often: If a woman be not chast out of her owne free and noble inclination, bolts, and keepers are but impertinent vanities.

For who is't, can those keepers keepe, for them
Finely to win, is her first stratagem.

Lucretia had a brother, who was of her counsell, and the faithfull Mercurie betweene her selfe and Eurialus. Hee is entrusted with all privacy to receive Eu­rialus into the house, which hee might doe, for he lived with Lucretias mother, whom Lucretia did often visit. The plot was this; That, Eurialus being shut up in some closet, after the old Lady was gone to her devotions, Lucretia should come in to Eurialus, colouring her love with the pretext of a dutifull visit. The terme of two dayes was the time prefix­ed for this amorous designe, which were as so many yeares to the longing cou­ple: for although to men in feare time hath a winged heele; yet to men in hope it walkes with leaden sockes. But for­tune shined not upon the desires of the Lovers, for Lucretias mother had smelt out the conspiracie, and upon the day assigned, she went from home, but lockt [Page 41] out her sonne in law, who presently car­ried the sad newes to Eurialus, which was no lesse grievous to Lucretia: who seeing that the plot was detected, well said shee, since I cannot arrive at my wished Port by this passage, I will at­tempt a new one, nor shall my mother glory, that shee could stop the eddie of my impetuous affections. There was one Pandalus, a Gentleman allied to her husband, him shee called to the Table, and made of her counsell, for her minde once enfired was uncapable of rest. She signified to Eurialus by letter that hee might confidently impart his counsells to him, as a man of experienced fidelitie, and the fittest instrument to contrive their meetings. But Eurialus, who had observed this Pandalus never to be from Menelaus his side, doubted his honestie, and suspected some treason. While he is in this demurre, hee is dispatched away to Rome to treat with his Holinesse about the Coronation of Sigismund: which cast both the lovers into an Ago­nie, [Page 42] but Casars authoritie must be obey­ed. For the space of two moneths (for so long he was absent) Lucretia confined herselfe to her Chamber, and put on mourning weeds, as if he had beene de­parted the world, who was but departed Thuscanie. All wonderd, but none knew the cause of it, which indeede was the reason why they wonderd, for igno­rance is the cause of admiration. The whole family thought it self in darkenes as if the Sunne had bin eclipsed, for the light of her beautie was commonly overcast with her curtaines, and the light of her smiles was never seene. In this state shee continued, till shee heard newes of Eurialus his returne, and that Cæsar was gone to meete him. Then as if awaked out of sleepe, shee stripped off her mourning apparell, and resu­ming her former dresse she, opened the window, and joyously expected him. So soone as Cæsar saw her, O (said he) Eu­rialus no longer deny a truth so evi­dent; this Sun was set, while you were [Page 43] gone, but you have brought us the mor­ning, and the Sunne is againe risen. Love hath no boundures, and it can bee con­cealed no morethan the Cough. It is your pleasure Sr. (said Eurialus) to bee merry, and to amaze mee with riddles. Perchance the noyse, and neighing of the Horses brought her to the window: with that he stole a looke, and constel­lated his eyes with hers: and this was their first parley, but a silent one. Not many dayes were passed, before Nisus (a trustie servant to Eurialus, and a great favourer of the cause) had spied out a Victuling house, which being situated on the backe side of Menelaus his Pal­lace, had the prospect of Lucretias Chamber. Hee quickly had won the Victuler to secrecie, and then brought his master thither, where hee sate pri­vately expecting when fortune would present herselfe to his sight, nor was his expectation deceived: for at last shee appeared; and Eurialus no sooner saw her, but (said he) how faires the gover­nesse [Page 44] of my life, turne thy aspect hither, and make me happie with its influence. Art thou there my deare Eurialus (said Lucretia) I have now the happinesse to heare thee speake, but this accursed di­stance envieth me the happinesse of thy embraces. A Ladder (said Eurialus) shall remove that difficultie, doe you but make fast your Chamber doore, for wee have too long procrastinated our joyes. O my Eurialus said shee, if you tender my safetie be more circumspect; here is a very suspicious window, and a worse neighbour; as for that Victuler, a little mony will purchase him to be­tray us both: we will walke in a securer tract, and for the present acquiet our selves, that wee have had this libertie of conference. After they had drawne out their discourse to some length, and by a reede mutually enterchanged favours, they sadly tooke their leaves, Sosias ha­ving now sounded their purposes, in vaine (said he to himselfe) doe I oppose their attempts; if I doe not intervene [Page 45] with some devise, my Lady will be rui­ned, and my Mistresse defamed. Of these mischiefes it shall be my province to avert one. Let my Mistresse love; if her love bee secret it cannot but bee secure. But her passion hath blinded her, and put out her providence. If therefore wee cannot bridle that, wee will labour to muzzle report, and keepe the house inviolate from the aspersions ofinfamie. I have hitherto resisted the commission of this unlawfull act, but since I can make head no longer, it shall now be my last care, that, that bee se­cretly done, which I see will be done. For it little differs, eyther not to doe, or so to doe, that no man knowes the do­ing. Sensualitie is generally implanted in all, nor is hee a man whom this fury doth not haunt, and he is most chast, that is most cautious. Whilst hee thus rea­sons with himselfe, Lucretia came out of her chamber, to whom having addres­sed himselfe, hee humbly demanded the reason, why shee thought his bosome a [Page 46] casket too unworthy for her secrets of love? I know said he you love Eurialus, and without my privitie would love him, but bee circumspect whom you make a sharer in your counsels, for you are a servant to him, who is the master of your secret. The first degree of wise­dome is not at all to love: The second to love closely, and to blind the world, as your passion hath blinded you. This you cannot doe alone without the assi­stance of a third: my heart hath beene prooved true to you by the Test of time, and the Index of a long experi­ence. If you shall please to encharge me with any thing, command with all assurance: it shall bee my studie that your love bee not unmasked, and your selfe exposed to punishment, and your husband to obloquie, and scorne. Ho­nest Sosias (replied Lucretia) I confesse this truth, and confidently repose my trust in you, presuming that my affiance will oblige your fidelitie, but you were me thought, somewhat cold in secon­ding [Page 47] my desires, or rather hot in oppo­sing them, yet since I see you undertake my cause as a voluntary, I shall enter­taine your service, nor suspect any trea­chery, an improvident act of many who have taught others to deceive them by seeming fearefull to be deceived. You know, that I burne extreamely, and therefore cannot burne long, for the violence of a motion is an enemie to its continuance. Eurialus languisheth for love, and I dye: and to oppose our Passi­ons is to advance them. One meeting would rebate our edge, and rectifie our loves to a moderation. Goe therefore to Eurialus and informe him that the povertie of our fortune will afford us but one way of accesse, if foure dayes hence, when our Peasants bring the Corne home, he will humble himselfe into the habit of a Porter: the gods are his precedents who have masked under more inglorious disguises. Thus dissem­bling his person, and our purpose under a Frocke let him carrie Wheate into the [Page 48] Granarie. Give him a punctuall situation of my Chamber, where I shall attend him at the day prefixed: and when courteous opportunitie shall leave him alone, let him enter my lodging, where I will be found with no more companie than himselfe brings with him: Sosias al­though sensible of the danger, yet ap­prehensive of a greater imbarkes for the action: and finding Eurialus, he delivers him those instructions hee had in com­mission from his Lady, which although in themselves very weightie, yet they seemed light in the seale of his estima­tion: hee hugges the attempt, and ad­dresses himselfe to the adventure, and complaines of nothing but those same foure ages, which Sosias had cald by the name of foure dayes.

So insensate is the brest of an Inamo­rato, and so desperatly is the eye of his judgement seeld up, that his heart takes no impression from the justest cause of terrour, and the apprehension of a dan­ger was never there. His Optickes are [Page 49] so irregular, that all objects lose the truth of what they are, their Ideas be­ing defaced by his abused imagination. What is most inaccessible presenteth a smooth surface in a lovers Glasse, and the greatnesse of any underta­king is lessen'd in his perspective. The anxious watches of a jealous hus­band, are in his valuation as vaine as his dreames, which proceedes from the want of feare, which was never one of Cupids retinue, and contempt of love, which in his judgement is but a Goblin to awe simplicity. Such an invincible Rascall is that same blinde Lad, that he can Cow the bravest spirit beneath the lowest servitude. Eurialus high in the favour of his Prince, and Fortune, but so high in the impregnable tower of his owne judgement, that it is not imagin­able that hee should finke to an humility so base: yet this Eurialus exchanged Scarlet with Sackcloath, and hee that grew up in the delicacie of all softnesse, did now harden his shoulders to the pa­tience [Page 50] of a burden. Since our ownē age hath enabled us to give evidence of a transformation so prodigious, wee will not dispute the realitie of those famous metamorphoses, which were transmit­ted to posteritie by the most delicate of the Romane wits: for although those changes were not naturall by the as­sumption of shapes, yet they were mo­rall by the harmony of Conditions: so that where the nobler operations of the discursive parts are drowned in a Le­thargie of sensualtie, you must looke for such a creature in the History of Beasts; for the inquirie would be ridi­culous, should you search in the defini­tion of man. The morning did now leave old Tithons bed, to doe a courte­sie to a yonger lover: and the Sun ren­dring all things in their colours, could not but give Eurialus a fresh one; who by his owne sentence then pronounced himselfe happie (such corrupt judges are wee of felicitie) when a childe new come from the Arch of his Cradle, [Page 51] would have doomed him misera­ble: when hee was mingled with the contemptible croud of Porters: where hee accounted that his glory, which is the opposite to glory, to lie obscur'd and unknowne. Thus our gallant Porter jogges on to the house, where hee lear­nedly filleth his sacke, and having emp­tied it in the Granarie, as being puney in this fraternitie, came last downe. In his way (as his instructions taught him) he gently opened her chamber doore, of which, by the description of Sosias, hee had a Mathematicall knowledge: which hee as suddenly shut, as hee had entred privily; there hee findes Lucre­tia alone busie with a needle, in expe­ctation of other imploiment. Advan­cing neare: Thou great Tresurer of my spirits, said he, which art president of my life, and hopes; I have now found thee aloncout of the danger of any House informers, and shall be initiated in thy chast embraces, which hath beene the summarie of my desires. No [Page 52] interposed wall can now eclipse thy beauties, nor the tyranny of distance any longer usurpe upon my eyes. Lu­cretia, although her selfe the Proje­ctresse was astonished at the first en­counter, imagining that shee saw some spirit, and not Euralius, and thinking it incredible, that so great a man should runne so great an hazzard, shee stood a­mazed at her owne workemanshippe, and her invention almost put her out of her wits[?]. But Eurialus was a very good womans Doctor, and with some kisses well applied restored her to her senses, and selfe. Poore heart, said shee, art thou hee? Art thou my Euralius? And having her cheekes double died (for the tincture of a blush was added to their Roses) shee gave him such an embrace, as if shee intended an union of soules. His forehead shee sweetely prest with her lippes, and in­termingling words with kisses; ah, said shee, upon what a doubtfull cast hast thou plaid: it shall be to mee an indu­biat [Page 53] argument of thy loyaltie, and I were Infidell, should I require a second de­monstration. Thou hast made an unde­ceiveable experiment of thy love, and my faith, shall bee found a prize wor­thy the adventure,

Fate prosper what we have designd,
And fan us with auspicious winde.

While I live, not any man but thy selfe, shall by the least colour entitle himselfe to mee: no, not my husband, if hee may boast that name, who never had my heart, and my hand onely which was forced, and therefore not obligatorie. Come on thou extract of my delight, and pleasures, cast off this Frocke, and let me see thee as thou art, not persona­ting another in a disguise. Put off the Porter, and put on Eurialus. Then un­casing himselfe of those fordid weedes, he appeard in the lustre of an unclouded Sunne, and by the forwardnesse of his defires, as well as the bravery of his ap­parrell, he spake himselfe to bee what shee expected. But now Sosias who [Page 54] stood sentre knocked at the doore, and warned the gentle lovers to provide for their safetie; for Menelaus, in great hast was comming for something in that Chamber. You must said hee play the jugler to cast a mist before his eyes, and gull him with some fallacie. Said Lu­cretia suddainly, by that bed there is a blind Closset, in which are all my lew­ells of price, of which I value you to be the richest, and will put you up in the same Cabinet. You may remember what I have writ to you, if wee should be at any time faire to bee taken by my husband, Dammage faisant,[?] Goe in boldly, the darkenesse will be your se­curitie: so that you neither move, nor spit. Eurialus was in some doubt what to doe, but finding that time could spare no place for consultation, hee resolved upon execution, and concluded to take her advise: with that shee opened the doore, and returned to her needle. Me­nelaus and Betus with him are now en­tred to search for some records apper­taining [Page 55] to the State: but not finding them in any of the Deskes, they are without question said Menelaus in that Closset, and command Lucretia to bring a light to looke there. Eurialus terrifi­ed at the word, his blood discomfited in his face made a retreat to his heart. And now beginning to hate Lucretia, he severely declaimed against his owne lightnesse, the alone cause of his pre­sent captivitie. I shall now, said hee, be publickly traduced: the losse of my Princes favour is inevitable, and that of my life is too faire a possibilitie. What power created, or can safetie herselfe rescue me from destruction? O the sim­plest of what ever was called man, who have made my owne ruine my Option. At what intollerable rates are these pleasures of love sold, for the buyer is often the price of his own ware? Yet for loves cause, which like smoake, then va­nisheth when it is at the highest, we will skrue our selves into the most inextrica­ble streights. I am my selfe an example [Page 56] of this sad Truth, for humane reason cannot furnish me with so much thread, as will cleare me of this Labyrinth. If pittying fate would send mee a gracious Liberate, love should never make mee another Mittimus. Kind Heavens re­deeme me hence, and dispense with this youthfull errour: doe not severely mea­sure my ignorances in all their dimensi­ons, but reserve me till repentance hath made an atonement for my delinquen­cies; for it wil be your greater glory that I live a monument of your mercie, than die a sacrifice to your justice. It was Lucretias purpose not to love, but to be­tray, and to bring mee like a poore Hart into the Toile. This day is the period of my life if the date bee not extended by the power of an omnipotent hand. I have often heard of the impostures of women, & never had the wit to decline them, but if I come off now, I will bid defiance to all their future stratagems.

Lucretia her self was in as great an ago­nie, distracted with a double feare, both [Page 57] for her lovers safetie, and her owne. But as it happens in unexpected occurren­ces, the conceit of a woman, is more present than that of a man (the sudden­nesse of the danger setting an edge upon her wit) shee had instantly contrived a remedy. Husband, said shee, there is a box in the window, where I remember you used to put some of your records, let us see if these you now looke for bee not there: and with that running hastily to the Box with a pretense to open it, shee thrust it out at the window with such art, that they supposed, it had been by chance, and not her intention. O hus­band, said shee, haste that we suffer not: the Box is fallen downe, make all speede least either Iewels, or writings be lost: for Heavens sake get you downe, and in the interim I shall watch that nothing be stollen. See the boldnesse of the wo­man; the best eye hath beene deluded by their false apparitions. Hee onely was never deceived, whom his wife never attempted to deceive: but hee [Page 58] that hath escaped, and yet hath beene layd at, let him ascribe his felicitie to his Stars, and not to his Providence. Menelaus and Betus mooved with this accident so much concerning them, run speedily downe into the streete. The house being built high after the Thuscan manner had many stares to bee descen­ded, which favour'd Eurialus with time to provide for his better securitie: who by the counsell of Lucretia tooke a new covert. Having now gathered up the Iewels and writings but not finding those they came for, they returned to search those Boxes, which were in the Closset, where Eurialus first tooke sanctuary. There they met with the papers, and having taken leave of Lu­cretia they departed. Then did she open the doore to her sweet prisoner, and in­vite him forth with the delicate com­pellations of, Thou living sourse of my delights, and summarie wherein all my joyes, are abbreviated, and yet not lessend by the contraction: wee have [Page 59] now libertie to discharge our minds by conference, and to let our selves loose to the freedome of uncontrol'd embra­ces. Our pleasure will be more endeard, and fined by this difficultie of the be­ginning, which though the perversnesse of fortune would have nipped, and bla­sted, yet some favourable power, un­willing to see so loyall a paire aban­don'd to destruction, kept life in our love by a gentler Influence. Here is now neither place nor cause for feare, let mee therefore embrace thee, thou armefull of Roses, and Lillies: why dost thoustand? Why dost thou doubt? I am thy Lucretia, dost thou abhorre her touch? (Eurialus his shaking sit ha­ving scarse left him) mustred up his spi­rits, and in his armes closely entwined his Mistresse: never, said he, was I ar­rested with so terrible an expectation of death. But the greatnesse of worth makes the sufferings, and deservings of thy servants inferiour to the acquist: and if things beratable to their valew, [Page 60] then it is a breach of commutative ju­stice, that such kisses, and embraces should be banished away Gratis. And my selfe (for ingenuity will speak truth) have bought this good at an under rate, having paid nothing for it but the feare of danger. Could I so dye, as to live a­gaine, and enjoy thee: a thousand times would I dye, to revive and enjoy thee a thousand times. O the felicity that I am estated in! Doe I see a vision, or is my joy a reall one? Doe I indeed em­brace thee, or am I deluded with a phantasme? No surely, here is no ap­parition, for this is flesh, not spirit. Lu­cretia was arrayed in a vcty thinne Pall, which did fticke to her so close, and without wrinkle, that it rendred her brests, and hippes in their true figure, and dissembled not her most private motions. Her necke was purely white; and her eyes did flame strongly: but to say white like the snow, or flaming like the funne, were to dishonour her with the beggerlinesse of the similitude. A [Page 61] cheerefull looke, a lively face: the Lilly, and Rose are but the obscure types and shadowes of those delicate tinctures laid on her cheeke by the pencill of Nature. Her laughter was free, but modest, her brest full, and her paps like two Pome­granates, did rise up on either fide with a gentle, and tempting swelling: which as they did beate, gave both a signall, and a challenge to the encounter, Euri­alus his continency was too weake, any longer to abide the Triall: and the poore Gentleman was not mortified enough to combate so violent a temptation: but having already left his feare, he resolv'd to leave his modesty too, and so boar­ding the Lady, Now, said hee, let us make our selves one, in each others re­ciprocall fruition, she (resisted, it seemes it is an old fashion) telling him a tale of the great care forsooth shee had of her reputation, & that she imagined that his love would be limited within the boun­dures of kisses, and pretty talking. At that Eurialus smiling assaulted her with [Page 62] this Dilemma. Either it is knowne, said he, that I am here, or not: ifit bee knowne, who will not suspect the rest? and it will bee a simple thing in you to undergoe such an imputation, and doe nothing for it: but if it be unknowne, then this likewise shall no man know: it is the earnest of my Love, and to want it, is to dye. It is a sinne, said Lucretia, Nay, said Eurialus, it is a sinne not to make use of a good thing, when you may. To refuse this occasion so freely vouchsafed by your selfe, and so dili­gently laboured for by mee, were to slight your noble favour, and to give the lye to my owne endeavours. And with that taking hold of her wrist, hee easily overcame her, who did but pre­vacilate in her resistance, and fight with a purpose to bee overthrowne. Nor did the fruition of her bring any satiety to his appetite, although usually such desires are emptied, and evaporated in the enjoying; it did rather adde a thirst to his dropsie. But Eurialus having an [Page 63] eye upon his danger, after hee had re­freshed himselfe with a banquet tooke leave of the most unwilling Lucretia: from whom he went, unsuspected, and unobserved, being onely taken for what hee was not, a Porter, walking homeward, hee beginnes to wonder at himselfe, being by himselfe almost put out of his owne knowledge: and pen­sively considers, what the event might bee, if Cæsar should meete, and know him. Into what a jealousie (said hee to himselfe) would this confused habit put him: I should be the common Table­talke, and the best helpe to discourse; I should never be at quiet, till hee had extorted from mee the mystery of this clownish disguise. But I should be bold to acquaint his Highnesse with a very little of the Truth: he should not know that Menelaus his house was the scene, and that I personated the Porter upon that stage: for Cæsar is privately my Rivall, and it would prove a matter of dangerous consequence, were there but [Page 64] the least whisper abroad, that the man had beene in the saddle, before the Ma­ster could put his foote in the stirrup. Lucretia must not be discovered, she en­tertained me, she saved me: and my si­lence is the least reward I can pay her, for her fidelity. While hee thus talked with himselfe, he espyed Palinurus, and his trusty Achates; but was at home before they could discover him: then having doft his frocke, he told them all the passages of his adventure. His passi­ons had so strongly continued their im­pressions in him; that in the relation of his feare, and joy, hee seemed to the spectators really still to feare, and real­ly still to joy. Foole, said I to my selfe, to consigne my safety, to the faith of a woman, and adventure my life in so weake a vessell, whose contrary hath beene so often commanded by my Fa­ther, that to have perished in the fact, had been the merit of my disobedience. He would discourse to me of their incli­nations, and manners, in so hated a lan­guage, [Page 65] that hee offered violence to my eares: for not any name which imply­ed vice, but with him was an Epithite, worthy that sexe. I was thus taught, but I forgat my lesson. If I had beene knowne by any man, sweating[?] under my burden, the dishonour would have been traduced to my posterity; and it would seeme an abatement in my Coat, when my Heire should be told that his Father bore a sacke in his Armes. I had beene lost to Cæsar, who would have thought my Levity fitter for a Bedlam, than a Court. But to interpret favourably for my selfe, admit my Master had passed it for a jest; what if her husband when he was hunting for his papers, had star­ted me? The Law of Italy is severe e­nough against the violaters of the marri­age bed, but the griefe of a wronged husband enlargeth it selfe to a venge­ance, that will not be limited, nor mi­tigated by Law.

One Husband whips th' Adultrer dead,
Another stabs him in his bed.

[Page 66] But suppose hee had spared my life, hee would send mee to the Gaole, or which is worse, to Cæsar: And grant that I had delivered my selfe from him, hee being disarmed, and I having an approved sword secretly by my side, yet there were others with him, and the roome had weapons to furnish them. Besides in the house were many tall fel­lowes, who would presently have shut the doores, and then tortured me with such an extremity, as would have ex­tinguished the memory of the persecu­tions. But chance, not cunning, re­deemed me from this slaughter-house. Yet why should I call that chance which was the dexteritie of Lucretia's wit, and so unjustly robbe her the ho­nour of my delivery. Singular is this love, and this Lady goes alone. Deare Lucretia, thy selfe art Argument enough to confute my Fathers invectives, and to vindicate thy whole kinde from the imputation of an in constancie. Why should I doubt then to lay my life in thy [Page 67] faire hands, and dedicate it to the pro­tection of so pure a faith. Had I a thou­sand neckes, I would render them all to thy custody: for thy vertues are fideli­tie and circumspection, from whence a prudence is derived, by which thou know'st how to love, and how to save thy Lover. Invention it selfe could not have contrived a neater tricke to divert those importunate searchers: whom thou didst delude with so much Art, as if thou hadst bin born for this end alone to be recorded the Author of so memora­ble an escape. Thou wert the preserver of my life, be pleased to be the disposer of it; and what it was first thy favour to save, be it now thy Grace to accept. I am thy creature, and my breath is from thy benevolence, which in thy service I shall be as ready to lose, as thou wert ready to save; for both my life and death are thy Prerogative. I am ravi­shed with the speculation of the pecu­liar rarities of thy wit and beautie, and shall my selfe be sicke, unlesse I give [Page 68] them another visite. When shall I make the second impression of my love, upon thy yeelding lippes, and with my fin­gers make so many dimples upon thy tender pappes? That which thou hast seene Achates, is not enough to make thee truely say, thou sawest her. There be degrees of activitie in her lookes, for at a distance they wound, and at hand they murder. Hadst thou beene with mee, thou hadst beene strooke with a more confounding sight, then Tantalus his friend, when that Lydian King, in a pretty frollicke, shewed him his wife naked: And had I power, my faithfull Achates, I would present thee with the like spectacle: for neither can I with all the flourish of Rhetoricke give you the description of her features: nor canst thou by all the vigour of meditati­on comprehend the plenitude of my joyes. Congratulate therefore with me, and content thy selfe with this small portion of knowledg, seeing that words are too narrow interpreters to expresse [Page 69] her many graces, and that my pleasure had something in it more copious, and significant than language. Thus Eurialus talked with Achates, and Lucretia tal­ked as much with her selfe. Yet was her joy lesse for want of a partner. Griefe, indeed a passion contracting the heart, is lessoned by communication, because it is a motion opposite to that contracti­on: But joy, a Passion distending the heart, is augmented by communicati­on, because it is a motion concurring with that distention. But Eurialus must not love alone; for to love Lucretia, and to love without a Rivall, is in the number of impossibles: it being a for­tune attending great beauties, to have a multitude of flies to court their flames.

Baccarus a Knight of Hungary, a man both noble by his birth, and by his nearenesse to Cæsars person, fell ex­treamely in love with her: his hope perswaded that she loved him by an ar­gument drawne from his face, which he knew lovely: but his feare disswaded [Page 70] the contrary, by an argument drawne from her breast, which hee thought chaste.

Lucretia, after the manner of the Thus­can Ladyes, dispensed the smiles of her browes upon the Courtiers, with so fine an impartiality, that while none of them saw others preferd, every one by a flat­tering application made himselfe the man. It is an Art, or rather a tricke which our Ladies practise whereby to dissemble their love. Baccarus is in a manner dispossessed of the state of his Reason, and no counsell can reestablish him in it, untill he hath some acquain­tance with Lucretia's minde, which was thus attempted. The Gentlewomen of Sienna, have a custome to visite our Ladies Chappell, about a mile from the City. Thither went Lucretia atten­ded with two Maides, and an old Wo­man, Baccarus followed, with a posee of Violets in his hand, very delicately guilded, in whose leaves there was a Letter of love, with fine subtilty inclo­sed. [Page 71] And let us stay our wonder at this, since the Oratour hath avouched that himselfe saw the Iliads of Homer com­prehended in the narrow capacity of a nut-shell. After some humble recom­mendations, he tenderd both himselfe, and Violet to Lucretia, and she rejects both: But at the importunity of the Hungarian, and by the assistance of the old woman, shee was wrought to ac­cept it: for why, Madam (said shee) should you faigne to your selfe a feare, and frame a danger in your imagination to tremble at. But Lucretia had not long kept it, before shee gave it one of her Maydes, who soone after encountring two Students was easily over-entreated to part with it, who being naturally in­quisitive, had suddainely unutiled the Mystery, and discovered the Paper. Men of this profession, have been here­tofore principally in the grace of our women: but since Cæsars Court came hit her, they are but their sport, and contempt; for instructed by so faire a [Page 72] precedent as that of Venus and Mars, they prefer armes to artes, and hold, that a pen is not so substantiall a weapon as a Lance. The schollers proud of an op­portunitie to vindicate themselves of the swordmen, deliver the letter to Mene­laus, and wish him to peruse the tenour of his injuries. Presently the good man was filld with indignation, and the house with noyse. Lucretias innocencie plead her not guiltie, and the narration of the fact, & the old womans evidence, did un­deniably confirme the plea. Complaint is made to Cæsar, and Bacarus conven­ted: who ingeniously confessed a truth so apparent, and gave his majestie an oath never to make new attempts upon his vertue. But he had too much of that heresie, that Iupiter frownes not, but smiles upon the perjuries of lovers. This animates him to reenforce his determi­nation, and the rather because it was forbidden: it being a humour original­ly traduced, most irregularly to prose­cute that, which is provided against [Page 73] with the greatest caution, and commi­nation. It was now winter, and Zephire resigned to a ruder breath, now the women threw Snowballs into the streets, and from thence the youth of the Cittie bandied them as fast into their windowes. Baccarus will now take an occasion from the winter, as be­fore from the spring: then a violet was his messenger, and now a ball of Snow, in which with much cunning hee had in­closed a letter, and with no lesse dexte­ritie directed it into Lucretias window. Who will not then confesse (before the racke bee presented him) that there is no bearing of saile which is not of for­tunes trimming, and that shee is Lady Regent of all sublunaries.

One howre of gentle fate's more preva­lent
Then thy commands to Mars from Ve­nus sent.

There is a wilde kind of sect, which hath forced this principle, Fortune hath no interesse in wise men. A sort of Stoi­call [Page 74] wits, who if they were put in Pha­laris his Bull, would not rore but sing. Yet certainly in the managing of the common affaire shee hath a double stroke, uphill and downe hill; to ad­vance a hope, and ruine it. Shee over­whelmed this poore Gentleman even when his hopes did almost touch upon the cape of happinesse. Hee was not well advised to enclose his love-letter in a posie of violets, nor at this time to the same purpose to chuse no surer con­vay then a Snowball. But had Fortune crowned this devise of his with wished successe, then had his subtiltie and wise­dome bin extolled by all men above the skies. But see the ill chance, the Snow­ball falling out of Lucretias hand, ran toward the fire, and it selfe and the Seale being dissolved by the heate, the letter lay open to view; which Mene­laus then in presence presently snatched up, & as greedily perused. The contents occasioned a great combustion, but Baccazus thought it his safer course to trust [Page 75] to a faire paire of heeles then to apolo­gies in a fact so evident.

This love of his stood Eurialus in good stead, for the jealous husband ta­ken up in watching Baccarus steps and actions, gave Eurialus faire advantage to put his plots in execution.

To keepe to ones proper use askes mickle paine,
What many seeke by love or force to gaine.

Betweene Lucretias and the adjacent house went a narrow alley, the neare posture of the walls afforded an easie ascent into Lucretias Chamber; but this was to bee attempted by night onely. Menelaus was to goe into the countrey, and to lodge from home. The lovers thought this joyful day long a comming. He takes his journey, Eurialus chang­ing his habit hies him to the alley[?]. There Menelaus had a stable whereinto Euri­alus got by Socias directions, and there under the Hay tooke up his lodg­ing. Dromo that was Menelaus groome [Page 76] in the morning came to the Hayloft with his Pitchforke, which hee strucke well nie into Eurialus sides, and had certainly murdered him had not Sosias by good fortune come that way: who knowing the danger Eurialus was in, called to Dromo: Prethee brother let me alone to give the Horses meate, and in the meane while see what good cheere is providing for dinner. Let us bee frollicke while our Lord is away. Wee live a better life with my Lady in his absence: shee is merry and freehan­ded: he peevish, unquiet, convetous, and never pleas'd. Seest thou not what a miserable house hee keepes, how hee lockesup the victualls from day to day wretched catiffe! that seekes by this sordid penury to heape up riches; for is it not the height of foolery to live poore all a mans life time, to die rich. What a good Lady have wee that ima­gining beefe and mutton not sufficient, feasts us with hollow foule, and denies [Page 77] us not plentie of the rarest wines. Pre­thee Dromo provide good junkets. Let me alone for that quoth Dromo, I have more minde to bee in the Kitchin then the Stable. I brought my Master out of towne, he gave mee not one word all the live-long day, but at evening he bad me tell my Lady hee should lie abroad all night. I commend thee Sosia that abhor­rest our Masters conditions, and I had long ere now given him the bag if my Ladies hadnot retained me by her liberall breakefasts. If you'll agree to it wee'll not sleepe a winke to night, wee'll eate and drinke till day appeare, and waste more in one mcale, then our Master shall have in a whole moneth.

Eurialus was glad to heare them thus in discourse, yet observed the conditions of servants, and imagined that his owne in his absence ser­ved him with the same sawce. So when Dromo was gone Eurialus rising up: what a happie night (quoth hee) [Page 78] Sosia shall I enjoy by thy courtesie that hast directed mee hither, and by an ex­cellent wile kept mee from being dis­closed. Thou art an honest man, and thy deserts challenge my affection, nor will I proove ungratefull, this good turne shall not goe unrewarded.

The appointed houre drew onjoyfull Eurialus, although hee had twice esca­ped narrowly with life, climbes the wall, and the window being open, findes Lucretia by the fire with her junkets a­bout her, expecting his comming. Shee knowing him to bee her sweet heart a­rose and imbraced him. They kisse, and after salutation, with wine and dainties refresh their tired spirits. How momen­tany are our joyes! how durable our greefe! Eurialus had not had one houres fruition of content when Sosia brought the sad tidings of Menelaus returne and blasted all their joy. Eurialus is fright­ed and bethinkes himselfe how to make escape. Lucretia having hid the junkets goes to welcome her husband home. [Page 79] husband (quoth shee) thou art wel­come: but prethee why staydst thou so long in the countrey? take heed I smell out no peece of waggery: why dost thou not reside at home? why dost thou excruciate me by thy absence? but pre­thee lets sup here, and then wee'll goe to bed. They were then in the Hall where the houshold used to sit at meales, there shee endeavoured to stay her husband that Eurialus might more opportunely make escape. But Mene­laus had supt abroad and made haste to his bed chamber. Then said Lucretia I am no body in your regard: why chose you not rather to sup at home with me; I because you were absent have neither eate nor drunke all this day. Some coun­trey men brought mee wine affirming it most neate and terse, my greefe would not permit me to taste one drop. Now you bee come home please you let us goe into the Celler, and let us ex­periment if the wine bee sutable to their report. Having thus said, with her right [Page 80] hand shee snatcht a light and tooke her husband by the left and so descended the Celler and spun the time out untill shee thought Eurialus had shifted for himselfe, and then against her will shee went to bed with her husband; Eurialus in the dead of the night returned into the house againe.

Next morning Menelaus (whether through provident care or jealousie I wot not) commanded the window to be made up: I verily beleeve (for our countrey men are shrewd conjecturists and wonderously jealous) that Menela­us suspected the fitting situation of the place, and having none of the best con­ceits of his wife, was willing to remove the occasion, for though he could nottax her with false play, yet hee saw her fol­lowed by many sutors, and knew a wo­mans minde was sickle, having as many changes as a tree, leaves: the feminine sex being great lovers of noveltie and sated with the fruition, set naught by their owne husbands. Hee therefore trackt the path that all jealous hus­bands [Page 81] goe, who strongly conceit that watchfull observation may keepe their wives from treading awry. By this meanes their meeting was debarred, & their entercourse by letters was likewise stopt, for by Menelaus perswasions the governour put downe the Vint­ner, out of whose roomes (situated on the backe side of Lucretias house) Eu­rialus was wont to talke unto Lucretia, and by a Reede reach letters to her. They had nothing left them but an in­terview onely, and unspeakable was their griefe that were unable to desist, yet knew not how to make progression in their amorous negotiation.

Eurialus thus musing what way to take, he remembred Lucretias counsell con­cerning Pandalus a Gentleman allyed to her husband: and in imitation of learned Phisitions that in dangerous diseases ra­ther experiment some doubtfull dose & perilous potion then desert their patient for incurable: he resolves to assay Panda­lus & make triall of a remedy wch he had formerly refused. Having cald him and [Page 82] being withdrawne into a private roome, he thus bespake him:

Friend, I desire you to sit, I have a weightie businesse to disclose to you. It requires diligence, trust and secrecie with all which I acknowledg you are in­dued: I would long since have intima­ted the same unto you, had not the ten­der growth of your acquaintance re­tarded me; I now both know you, and for your approved fidelity love and ho­nour you: but if you were a meere stranger to me, your countrey mens ge­nerall good report were sufficient; and those friends of mine with whom you be familiar, have let mee know your rare qualities, and what great esteeme you merit; by whose insinuations I am informed that you are desirous of my favour whereof I now deliver you sei­son, your merits as much as mine clai­ming an enterchange of our mutuall af­fections. But to the point. There shall not neede many words betweene friends, you are not ignorant what im­perious [Page 83] sway love, either vertuous or sensuall, beares in the hearts of mortall men; no heart that is not made of Ada­mant, but hath felt the force thereof. From this passion I have not read of any man could claime immunitie. This phrensie can bee no otherwise cured but by the fruition of the partie beloved, our times and former ages afford plentifull examples of both sexes, who prizing love at as high rate as life it selfe, de­ny'd the one, have disdained to retaine the other. My drift in this relation is to acquaint you with my love and what I would request at your hands. I will not conceale from you what profit will redound hence; because I esteeme you as my most intrinsecall friend. I love Lucretia; nor am I (my Pandalus) to be blamed, but Fortune the Lady Regent of this lower world we all adore. I knew not the customes of this Citie, your wo­men dissemble with their lookes what their hearts meane not. Hence grew my errour Lucretias smiles made mee [Page 84] thinke my selfe belov'd, and can any ac­cuse me for setting my affection on so worthy an object. But finding my hopes beguiled, I not being able to retreate, I left no meanes unassayed till I won Lu­cretia to my love: now our flames have equall vigor, and without your assistance we are both of us undone. Her husband and brother watch her narrowly: the golden Fleece was not so attended by the restlesse Dragon, or Hell gates by Cerberus as shee is. I know your linage: your noblenesse, riches, power, would I had never knowne this woman. But who can stand against destiny. Fortune, not my election made her my mistresse. In this posture matters now stand. Our love is concealed as yet, but once brought to light will produce some hi­deous mischiefe, which I pray heaven avert. Haply I could master my desires by departing this Citie, which I would doethough to my great greefe for your house sake, if I thought it would doe any good: But I know the height of her [Page 85] passion is such shee would either follow me or forc'd to stay, by her owne hands rid her loathed life, which would bee an everlasting staine to your family. For the removall of these evills I desired this meeting. To your care I commend the management of this important af­faire. It lies in you by procuring our congresse to asswage our mutual[?] flames, you know the severall accesses of the house, what time her husband is away, and know how to introduce mee. Your helpe is needefull to beguile her hus­bands brother that keepes so strict a watch over her. Bee diligent and give me inkling at what time her husband is absent. Vse some sleight to remoove the brother, and that he may surrender that charge to your selfe alone, which I pray Heaven may so fall out, then by your admission of me by night while all are in a deepe slumber all things will sort to a happie conclusion. It cannot bee unknowne to your wisedome what sundry commodities will hence ensue. [Page 86] The honour of your house will be kept untainted: our love concealed which if it should be knowne would be an infamy to your family, you shall preserve your kinswomans life. Menelaus shall be ob­lig'd to you for his wives safetie; of two evills the lesse is to bee chosen. What course soever bee taken there will bee danger in it: but this expedient hath the least. Nor would I have you thinke your paines shall goe unrequited, you know my favour with Cæsar; you shall obtaine whatsoever you will aske. And this I will promise you, you shall bee made a Count Palatin to you and your heires for ever. Then bestirre your selfe. I commend to your care and fide­litie Lucretia: my selfe, our love, our reputation, the honour of your family; they are all in your power; it lies in your hands to ruine all or to preserve all.

Having heard all this, Pandalus smi­led, and pausing a while. O Euralius, said he; All this I knew and wish things [Page 87] had beene otherwise, but you have said no more then truth, things are now at that passe that I must of necessitie helpe, or great infamie will light upon our fa­mily. Lucretia is so farre ingag'd in love, that if I succour not, shee will either stab her selfe, or throw her selfe head­long out at windowes: shee regards nei­ther her life nor honour. Her selfe hath disclos'd her love to mee. I dehorted her, chid her, sought to extinguish the flame, but could not prevaile; shee re­gards nothing but you, shee thinkes on nothing else but you. Calling often to mee shee sayes, dost heare Eurialus. Love has so chang'd her that shee is not like herselfe. The whole Cittie had not a chaster, a wiser dame. What a won­derfull thing it is that love should beare such rule in humane mindes. You have hit on the right way of cure. I will a­bout this businesse, nor will I exact any reward at your hands, knowing it is not the part of an honest man to aske any boone where no recompence is de­served. [Page 88] What I doe is to remove the scandall threatned our family. But quoth Eurialus, if you doe not disdaine it I will procure you the stile and digni­tie of a Count Palatine. I scorne it not (quoth Pandalus) but I would not have it by way of bargaine, but would have it conferr'd on mee freely and uncondi­tionally. It would have more sorted to my desires to have promov'd your wi­shes, and brought you into Lucretia's presence, and you not to have knowne the author of so good a turne. Fare­well. And fare you well quoth Euria­lus: set all your wits a worke to bring us together.

Away goes Pandalus rejoycing with acquisition of so great a mans favour, and with the hopes of being made a Count; which dignitie the lesse hee seem'd to desire, the more he coveted; many men in this being like women who the more they say nay, the more intensely desire what seemingly they refuse. This man by playing the Pan­dar [Page 89] is honoured with an Earledome and his posteritie ennobled for ever after.

O Marianus there are many degrees in noblenesse, and if you search the ori­ginall thereof, in my opinion you will finde very few that can rightly boast a lawfull propagation. The rich they commonly are ennobled; but riches & vertue seldome move in one spheare; therefore such noblenes flowes from an impure fountaine. It is a wonder to see a man grow ritch by honest courses. All approve that verse,

None aske how wealth's attaind but it must be had;

After the bags are well lin'd, then no­blenesse is the thing next sought after; I say,

Vertue alone does make a noble man.

Not many dayes after, there grew a broyle amongst Menelaus tenants, many whereof being much gone in drinke lost their lives. For composing whereof Me­nelaus presence was held requisite.

[Page 90] Vpon this occasion it was concluded that Eurialus about the houre of five in the evening should draw towards the house, and if hee heard Pandalus sing should hope the best. Eurialus came at the houre prefixt, and listned attentive­ly for the watchword, but hee could heare no musick, nor so much as any whispering noise at all.

Achates as soone as the appointed houre was past counselled Eurialus to depart, telling him that they meant no­thing else but to gull and delude him. It liked not Eurialus to remove, alledging many reasons one after another for a longer stay. The brother of Menelaus was left behind, whose vigilancie and suspicious scrutiny up and downe in eve­ry corner hindered Pandalus singing. Quoth Pandalus shall wee not goe to bed to night, I can no longer hold open my eyes. I wonder that being in your tender yeares you should so sympathise with the nature of old men, that depri­ved of their youthfull moysture fel­dome [Page 91] fal asleepe till morning, when it is time for others to rise. Its high time, pray lets goe to rest. I marvell you sit up so late; Lets goe then quoth Aga­memnon if you'll needs have it so; yet first lets see that all bee sure, so going to the gate hee double lockt and bol­ted it very strong. A huge barre of Iron there was which two men were not able to lift, which Agamemnon finding him­selfe unable to weild, Pandalus (quotl­hee) lets make fast the dore with this barre, and then wee'll goe to bed. Eu­rialus heard these words and whispe­red with a soft voice: If they had done with this barre once then all were done. Come, come (quoth Pandalus) what a quoile keepe you? if it be theeves one­ly you feare, all is cocksure; if enemies, all the ammunition in this house is not able to keepe them out. He lift no bar to night, or doe it your selfe, or it shall bee undone for mee. Well it matters not greatly quoth Agamemnon, and so went to rest. Then said Eurialus He [Page 62] watch here for an houre to see if any will open. Achates was so tired that in his heart he curst Eurialus for kee­ping him out of his bed so late. They had not stayd long but at a chinke they might perceive Lucretia with a small Taper in her hands. Eurialus pressing as neare as hee could possibly: Sweet heart Lucretia (quoth hee) all health to you. At first shee began to flie, but presently better bethinking her selfe, shee askes who's there? Quoth Eurialus, I thy Euralius am here. Open the dore my joy; I have wat­ched here till midnight for thy com­ming. Shee knew the voyce, yet for more surenesse and prevention of any false dissimulation shee forbore to open till shee heard the by-word which they two privily gave each other. Then with much adoe shee opened the dore a little way, and Eurialus made as hard shift to creepe in at so straight a pas­sage, and embrac'd her in his armes. [Page 93] Achates hee stood sentinell without dores.

I am not able to say whether it were feare or excesse of joy that was the cause, but Lucretia falling into a pale swoon in Eurialus his armes seemed like a livelesse creature; her speech failing, and her eye lids being closed up, some warmth remain'd, and her pulses beat faintly. Eurialus knew not which way to turne him; if I leave her I am accessary to her death that left her in so dangerous extremitie: if I stay Agamemnon or one or other of the house will finde us, and I shall bee sure to die. Oh unfortunate love, more bitter then gall! for thee to how many dangers have I beene obnoxious? How many deaths have awayted mee for thy sake. Was this a crosse that thou keptst for mee in store to extinguish my dearest love, within my owne embra­ces? But, love oversway'd all other respects, and nought regarding his [Page 94] owne safetie hee abode with his deare, and being dissolved into teares, oft kis­sing her speechlesse corps: hee cryed out: Woe's me Lucretia where art thou? Why doest not heare? Why makest thou no answer? open thy eyes and behold mee, and smile on mee as thou wast wont. I thy Eurialus am here. O my Deare, it is thy Eurialus that em­braces thee. O why dost not returne me one, for so many hundred kisses? Is this thy entertainement? Are these the joyes thou invitest mee to? I conjure thee arise, looke on thy Eurialus, it is I thy Eurialus that am here.

Having ended these exclamations, a cataract of scalding teares, hee let fall upon her face and temples, whereby as one by strong waters helpe resusci­tated, seeming like one raised out of a dead Lethargye of sleepe, and behol­ding her Beloved: Ah mee, Eurialus, said shee, where have I beene? Why didst thou not rather suffer me to expire [Page 95] it as a happy death, to dye in thy armes. Would heaven I had departed so be­fore thou depart this City. Conferring after this manner, they set forward to­wards her chamber, where bathing themselves in Venerian delights: Now quoth Eurialus, my toyle and danger are changed into joyes beyond expres­sion. O Summary of all beauty, am I now possessed of thee? It were best dying now whilest this blisse endures, least intervenient misery, againe blast our contentments. My Happinesse is incomparable. But alas, how swiftly doe the houres flye away? O malig­nant night, what makes thee make such haste. This verily is the shortest night in all the yeare. This spake Eurialus nor was Lucretia behind, they vyed kisses, and for amorous phrases were neither in others debt. At the peepe of day our Lovers depart asunder.

Cæsar having now wrought his peace with Pope Eugenius, hastens his jour­ney [Page 96] towards Rome. Lucretia was not without some inkling hereof, for what is it that Love perceives not? Thus therefore upon this ground wrote Lu­cretia to Eurialus.

Lucretia to Eurialus.

Had I power to be angry with thee, it should bee now, that being ready to depart canst so cunningly dissemble with mee. But my heart is more affecti­onate to thee then it selfe, and can by no cause bee drawne to conceive dis­pleasure against thee. My deare heart why didst thou not acquaint mee that Cæsar will shortly bee gone? Hee pre­pares for his journey, and I know thou wilt not stay behind. What I prethee will become of mee? Wretch that I am, what shall I doe? Where can I en­joy tranquilitie? If thou forsake mee I shall not live two dayes. I conjure [Page 97] thee by these lines moystned with my teares, by thy hand and faith given unto me if ever I have deserved ought at thy hands, or if ever my acquaintance won thy acceptation, take pitty on a forlorne Lover. I make no boone that you would still reside here, but that you would make mee the companion of your travell. I will some evening give it out that I desire to walke to Bethle­hem, attended by one old woman, there let two or three of your traine lie in waite that may receive mee; It is no hard taske to carry one away that is willing to goe. Nor thinke not the attempt will prove your disparagement, for King Priams sonne accounted it no disgrace to wed a stollen Lady. My husband shall hereby suffer no wrong, for however things goe, he shall be sure to lose mee; for if you carry mee not away, death shall separate mee from him. But by your crueltie leave mee not to die, who have ever prized [Page 98] you dearer then my owne heart.

Eurilus Answer.

I kept it from thee till this houre my Lucretia, that thou mightest not torment thy selfe before the time were come. I know thy nature, and that every light occasion causes thee to fret too too bad. Nor is Cæsar to depart hence for ever; when wee returne from Rome our way lies through this Cittie into our native Country; should Cæsar make choice of another way, if I doe not returne to thee, may I never see my owne home againe, but like Vlisses spend the remnant of my dayes in forraigne peregrination. Give not thy selfe over to Melancholy, my dearest, but cheare up thy selfe. For the rape you speake of, all the world affords not such a con­tent as that would bee to mee, but I more value thy honour then my owne delight. The confidence you have re­posed [Page 99] in mee awakens a provident care of your well-doing. You are deseen­ded of a right noble house, and your re­putation is extolled not at home onely but in farre remote regions. Should I commit this act: I speake not of mine owne, what disgrace would it bee to your Family? What a heart-breake to your mother, what a scandalous ru­mour throughout all the Cittie. Behold will they say, Lncretia that was impu­ted so chaste a Dame is turned a whore, and run away from her husband. Hi­therto you have conserved your credit unstained, this rape would sully your reputation with an indelible disgrace. But to let passe fame, though shee wor­thily deserve our regard, this way wee can never attaine the fruition of our love. I depend on Cæsar; if I forsake him, my meanes are too short to main­taine thee after thy degree: if on the otherside I follow the Court, there's no repose, wee daily remoove from [Page 100] place to place, Cæsar never made so long abode any where as hee has now at Sienna, enforced through necessi­tie of Warre. What infamie were it to us both, should I use thee in the Campe as a common prostitute? I con­jure thee my Lucretia upon these grounds alter thy determination, take my advise in good part, and regard not thy passion above thy welfare. Haply another lover would have perswaded thee otherwise, and beene the first that would have counsell'd thee to make escape, to the end hee might abuse thee at his pleasure, never forecasting for the future, but greedy to satisfie his pre­sent Just; but such a one deserves not the stile of a true lover, that preferres the fulfilling of his lust before a care of reputation; I (my deare Lucretia ad­vise thee for the best, I prethee abide here, and diffide not my returne; I will so contrive it that Cæsar shall send mee agent into these parts, and free of all [Page 101] discommoditie will compasse our mu­tuall fruition. Farewell; live happy, and love thy Eurialus, and wrong mee not by thinking my love lesse servent then thine owne, or that I am willing to depart: O no more my sweet adew.

Lucretia acquieted by these perswa­sions writ him backe word that shee would follow his counsell.

Few dayes after Eurialus set for­ward with Cæsar toward Rome, and shortly after his arrivall fell into a Fea­ver. Vnfortunate man that burning in love was never the lesse seised by agu­ish inflammations. Love had brought his body low, and his disease brought him even to deaths dore; in so much that he was more beholden for life to Phisitians than nature. Cæsar visi­ted him day by day, and was as ten­der over him as he had beene his owne child, and commanded to send for all the prime Phisitions. But a Letter [Page 102] sent him from Lucretia, whereby he un­derstood that she was both living and in good health, did him more good then all the Doctors Receipts. It drove a­way his Ague, and made him strong enough to walke abroad, in so much as he was present at Cæsars coronation, and honoured with the addition of knighthood.

When Cæsar went to Perusium hee stayed behind at Rome, as not yet per­fectly recovered. From thence hee came to Sienna, very feeble and ma­cilent: he might see his Lucretia, but might not conferre with her. Letters past mutually, and the businesse about her rape is againe had in agitation.

Here Eurialus stayd three dayes, but finding it impossible to gaine ac­cesse unto her, hee intimated unto her his departure. Their greefe at their se­paration exceeded their joy in their mutuall societie.

Lucretia stood at the window when [Page 103] Eurialus rode through the street, they cast their blubbered eyes on one another, and were so opprest with sorrow, as they that felt their hearts even violently rent out of their bo­somes; who but a lover like them­selves is able to draw the portrature of their resentments. Laodemia when her husband Prothesilaus went to the Trojan Warres fell into an extasie and dyed at report of her husbands slaughter. Queene Dido slew her­selfe after Aeneas stole away, and Portia would live no longer her Bru­tus being dead. Our Lucretia when Eurialus was out of her sight fell downe in a swoone, and was by the servants got up and had to bed till shee came to her selfe. But after, sui­ting herselfe in meane habit, shee was never heard sing, never seene to laugh, nor could never be made mer­ry by all the meanes that ever could be used.

[Page 104] Thus persevering for some space of time, and living heartlesse and insus­ceptible of comfort, in the armes of her weeping mother that in vaine sought her consolation, shee expired her latest gaspe.

Eurialus having lost the sight of Lucretia spake not one word as hee travelled, had Lucretia onely in his heart, and his thoughts were whether hee should ever bee able to returne unto her.

At last hee came to Cæsar keeping his Court at Perusium, whom hee at­tended into divers countries: but as he followed Cæsar, so Lucretias ghost pursued him, and suffer'd him not to take any quiet repose.

This faithfull lover understanding that shee was dead, strucke to the heart with sorrow hee put himselfe in mourning. At last Cæsar made up a match for him, and hee espoused a beautious, chast, and prudent Virgin of Princely linage.

[Page 105] Deare Marianus you have heard a true narration of the sad Catastrophe of a paire of unfortunate lovers; let the reader hereof by others harmes learne to beware, and not be inebriated with the potions of love which have ever a greater mixture of Gall then Hony.

Farewell. From Vienna the fift of the Nones of Iuly, 1444.


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