X [...]phons trea­tise of householde.

❧ To the reder.

☞ This boke of householde, full of high wysedome, written by the noble philoso­pher Xenophon, the scholer of Socrates, the whiche for his swete eloquēce, and in­credible facilitie, was surnamed Musa At­tica, that is to say, the songe of Athenes: is righte counnyngly translated out of the greke tonge in to Englisshe, by Gentian Heruet, [...], whiche boke for the welthe of this realme, I deme very ꝓfitable to be redde.

❧ Xenophons treatise of householde.

I Harde vpon a time the wise Socrates cōmune of the or­dryng of an house, speakynge to one Critobulus, after this maner. Tel me Critobulus, is the ordrynge of an house the name of a science, lyke wyse as phisike is, and masons & carpenters crafte? So me thinketh, said Critobulus. Whether than may we tell, what is the duetie, and the propre office, of the ordrynge of an house / like wise as we can tel of other craftes and sciences? Me thynketh, saide Critobulus, hit longeth to a good husbande, and a good ordrer of an house to guyde well and order his owne house. But yet, sayd So. If one dyd put hym in trust; & charge him to order his house, coude not he order hi [...] as well as his owne, if he wolde? For he that hath a carpenters crafte well, he can worke aswel for an other, as he can for hym selfe, & may not a good husbande, wel experte in the or­drynge of an house, do lyke wyse? Me [Page] thynketh yes, good Socrates. Than a man, sayde Socrates, that is well sene in that science, though he haue no substaunce / nor no goodes him selfe, may get his liuing, and haue good wages / if he wyll order an other mans house / as well as he that buil­deth an house. In good fayth, sayde Cri­tobulus / he were worthy to haue very good wages, if he coude take an other mās house in hande / and do euery thyng / that belōgeth to hit; / and make the house better in goodes and in substaunce. But what do we meane by the house / whether is it nothyng els but the bare house / or whether all maner of thynges, that a man hath out of the house / be belongynge to the house? Me thinketh, sayde Critobulus, that all though that that a man hath / be not within the towne / where he dwelleth / but in the coūtre / or any where els, that al dothe belonge to the house, what so euer a man hath. And is there not some men / that haue enmyes? Yes mary / and a great meiny to. And shal we say, that their enmyes be theyr goodes or substance? By my feyth it were a mery ieste, if he that hath caused vs to haue mo enmyes than we had / wolde haue a rewarde for it besyde, for by cause we haue iuged a mans house / and that that a man hath to be all one, Ye but I do [Page 3] not accompt that amonge a mans substance and goodes, that is nought and hurtful vn­to him, but that that is good and profitable.

Than, as farre as I se, ye calle that a mans goodes and substaunce, that is profi­table vnto him? Ye mary do I, and suche thinges as be hurtful, I cal them domages and not goodes. And what if a man bye a horse, that he can not ryde / but fall downe from his backe, and so do hym selfe a di­splesure, is not that hors his goodes? No by my faye, seinge those thynges be goodes that be good. Nor the grounde than shall not be called goodes vnto a man / the which occupieth it so, that he hath domage by hit. Nor the grounde shal not be called goodes, if where that a man shulde be founde and norisshed by it / he dieth for hunger. Than it fareth like wise by shepe. If a man hath any domage / by the reason that he can not guyde them, nor order them as he shulde, the shepe shall not be goodes vnto hym? Me thynketh no. Than, as farre as hit semeth by you / ye call those thīges goodes, that be profitable / and those thynges that be hurtefull be no goodes? So me thyn­keth. Than one selfe thynge shalbe called goodes vnto him that can vse it as he shuld / [...] to hym that can not / it shalbe no goodes: [Page] like wise as recorders be goodes vnto him / that can plaie on them somwhat according: but vnto hym that can not, they be no other wise good than stones, that be vnprofitable, excepte a man do selle them. And so lyke wyse by the recorders / if we sell them, they be good: but if we kepe thē, & can not occu­pie them, they be no goodes. We must nedes to agree in this tale, seinge we haue sayd a­fore, that those thinges, that be ꝓfitable be goodes. For the recorders / as lōge as we kepe them vnsolde / they be no goodes / for they do vs no good: but if they be sold, they be goodes. Ye mary, sayd Socrates, if one haue the witte to sel them well. But if one do selle them, that can not order hym selfe / euen whan they be al redy solde, they be no goodes / accordīg to your tale. Me thīketh ye say sir Socrates, that nor yet money no­ther is goodes, except a man can vse it. So me thinketh / ye haue granted all redy, that those thynges be called goodes / that a man getteth any profite by. But if a man dyd bestowe his money vpon an harlotte, & that by the reason of dayly cōuersation with hir, his body were he weker, his soule the worse disposed, and his house the worse kepte and ordered, howe shulde money be profitable vnto him? It can not be in no case / excepte [Page 4] parauēture we wil cal our goodes a poison, the whiche whan a man dothe eate of it, hit bringeth him out of his witte. But as for money / frende Critobulus / if a man can not vse it as he shulde, let him cast it away farre from him. For hit is nother profitable vnto him, nor may be called goodes. But as for frēdes, if a man can vse them, so that he get some profite of thē, what shal we say yt they be? Goodes forsoth, said Crito. & moche more thā shepe or oxen, seinge they be a gret deale more profitable. Than, accordinge to your tale, our enmis like wise be goodes vnto him / that can get profite of them. So me thinketh. And it is a point thā of a good husbande and a good ordrer of an house, to haue away to vse his enmies so, that he may gette some profette by them. In any case. For ye se well inoughe, good Critob. howe many meane mennes houses / & howe many lordes & kyngis dominiōs haue ben increa­sed and amplified by the reason of warre. Forsoth sir Socrates, me thynketh ye haue verye well spoken in this matter, but what thīke you by this, whan that we se that som men, which haue sciences, good wages / and good propreties, wherby they myght make their houses the better, if they wold put thē selfe to it: yet we may wel se & perceiue they [Page] woll not do it. And therfore we se, that the sciēces and good propreties, that they haue, auayle them nothynge: whether than shall those sciences / that they haue / be accompted for theyr goodes and substance / or for som­what els? Ye said Socrates, me thinketh, ye meane that by bonde men / and by some vile parsons. No by my feythe I: but I speake of some of them, that be honest mens sonnes and gentilmennes to / the whiche I se, that some of them, that be experte bothe in those thynges / that longe to warre and also to peace / yet they woll not put them selfes to none of them. and me thīketh, they shuld be in a better case, if they were bounde men. For I suppose, that they do not that that they shulde, for bicause they lacke mai­sters to putte them to hit. Howe can that stande, saide Socrates, that they haue no maisters, whan that they desiring to lyue in welthe and felicite, and mynded to do that that wolde be for their ꝓfette: their lordes and superiours do let them, that they shall not do it? And what be they, saide Crito­bulus, that be inuisible, and yet order them thus? Nay they be not all so inuisible, no, Iwis they be clere inoughe to euery mans sight. And ye knowe well your selfe / they be moste vngratious and moste myscheuous [Page 5] of all, if slouthfulnes, sluggardise / lacke of stomacke and quickenes, lacke of takynge hede, and also negligence may be taken for vngratiousnes. And besyde these there be other deceitfull ladies, the whiche do come in vnder the colour and name of pleasures, playenge at dice and cardes, vnprofitable triflynge and kepynge company with vn­thriftes / the whiche in proces of tyme do shewe playnlye vnto theyr adherentes, by them deceiued, that amonge pleasures there is some wo and some sorowe myngled. These ladies kepe them so in seruage and thraldome, that they can not be suffred to do nothynge, that is for theyr profite. Ye but there be some other, good Socrates, the whiche haue no suche, to let them from their busines / but rather applie them selfes well fauordly to their busines, and seke, and ima­gin al the wayes possible to gette them good with al: yet they do stroye them selfes, mi­nisshe their liuelode, & destroy their houses: And as concernynge to fynde any remedye / they be at their wittes endes. And they also, sayde Socrates, be lyke wyse bounde men / as other be, and haue ouer them very sore and cruell felowes to theyr maisters. Some of them be in the thraldome of glo­tony, some of licorousnes, some of dronken­nes, [Page] some of vayne pride / and costly vayne glorye / the whiche kepe their subiectes so sore in seruitude and bondage, that as longe as they se them yonge and lustie, and able to worke / they make them to brynge them all that euer they can gette / to bestowe it vpon theyr lustis and pleasures. But whan they perceyue they be so olde, that they can not worke, than they lette them alone with a mischiefe / to lyue wretchedly in theyr olde age, and seke other, that they may bringe in to their seruice lyke wyse. But it beboueth gentil Critobulus / to stryue and fight with them for our owne libertie, none other wyse than we wolde with them, the whiche / with naked swordes and weapons in their hādis, go aboute to brynge vs in thraldome and seruitude. Enmyes, if that they be good honest men / whan they haue brought some men in to theyr subiection, they cause many to be moche better, teachynge them to be reuly and tēperate, that afore were to high mynded and to fierce. But as for these la­dies they neuer cesse, but be euermore punis­shyng / beatyng / and turmētyng the bodies / the soules, and the houses of them, that they haue vnder: and that they do as longe as they be their maistresses. Than Critobulus sayde vnto hym after this maner. As for [Page 6] this matter me thynkethe I haue harde you speke sufficiently in it. And whan I grope and serche well my conscience, I finde, that me thynkyth / I can very well refrayne all maner of suche thynges. Wherfore if ye wyl gyue me counseyle, howe doinge I may encreace & make my house better, I thinke / I shall be nothinge let of them that ye calle ladies. And therfore tell me with a good wyl, if ye haue any goodnes in this matter. Or els ye thynke parauenture, that we be ryche inoughe, and nede no more goodes. By my faith, saide Socrates, in dede, if ye speake of me, I nede no more goodes, but I am ryche inoughe. But as for you Cri­tobulus, me thinketh ye be very poure. And by the feyth I owe to god / I haue some ty­mes great pite of you. Than Critobulus laughyng saide: And I pray you for god­dis sake, if al your goodes were solde, what sh [...]e [...]e ye haue for them? And what shuld I [...]ue for myne, if I wolde selle them? I thynke, sayde Socrates, that if I myght mete with a good byer / I shulde haue well for my house, and for all my goodes a. v. or vj. marke. But as for yours, I knowe very well, that ye shulde haue an hundred tymes more. And ye that knowe this, do ye thīke your selfe, that ye lacke no more goodes, [Page] [...] [Page 6] [...] [Page] and haue pitie of me, bycause of my pouerte. For that that I haue is sufficient inough to fynde me that that is necessarie. But for to meynteyne your state, and the worshyp, that ye haue taken vpon you, me semeth / that if ye had foure tymes as moche more as ye haue, it were not inoughe. And howe so, saide Critobulus? Than said Socrates: Fyrste of al I se, that ye muste nedes make many feastis and many great bankettes, or the people wyll skante abyde the sighte of you. More ouer ye must receyue in to your houses many straungers, and intreate them honorably, kepyng good hospitalite. Fur­thermore ye must bydde many men to diner, and do them some pleasure, or els at your nede ye shall haue no man to helpe you. More ouer I perceiue / that the cite of Athenes begynneth to put you to many greatte charges, as to fynde horses, to he [...] to builde thinges longyng to the citie, to, [...]ke musters of mē, to cause goodly pageāt [...] to be made, & goodly plaies to be plaide▪ But if there come in warre ones, I am sure, they wyll haue so moche money frō you, what in taxes, what in subsidies, and what in prea­stis, that ye shall scante be able ta beare it. And if ye seme to paye somewhat lesse than your power is, they woll punysshe you as [Page 7] sore, as thoughe they had founde you rob­bynge the cōmon treasorie. Besyde this, I se yt ye haue this opinion / that ye be riche / and that ye care not to get no more goodes / and that ye gyue your selfe to vayne and childisshe pleasures, as ye may wel do, The which thīges do moue me to haue cōpassion of you, fearyng lest ye fall in to some mys­fortune, and into great pouerte without any remedye. And as for me, if I had nede / I trowe ye knowe verye well / that there be many that wold helpe me: in so moche that if they gaue me but euery man a littell, I shulde haue more than the degree of my ly­uynge doth require. But as for your fren­des, al though they haue more to kepe them in their degree, than ye haue for yours: yet they loke, that ye shulde helpe them.

Than sayde Critobulus, I haue nothynge to say agaynst you in this matter: But it is time for you to instructe me with some good preceptes / to thintente that I be not so mi­serable in dede, that ye may haue cōpassion on me with a good cause. Than sayde Socrates: Do not ye thynke your selfe, that ye do a very strange, and a maruailous thynge / that but a pratye whyle ago, whan I sayde, that I was riche, ye lough at me / as though I knewe not what riches mened, [Page] and neuer stynted / til ye had put me to a re­buke, and made me to cōfesse, that I had not the hundreth parte of that, that ye haue, and nowe ye byd me to instructe you / and set my diligence / that ye be not poure in very dede. For I se wel good Socrates, said Critobulus, that ye haue in you the caste to make a man ryche in dede, that is to make him haue plentie and abundance. And I truste, he that of a litell thynge can make plentie and abundance, shal do hit moche more lightlier of many great thynges.

Be ye not remembred of our cōmunyng a pratye whyle ago, whan I coude in no case contrarie your sayinge: that to him that can not vse horses / horses be no goodes vnto hym / nor lande / nor shepe / nor money / nor nothing els, and yet of suche thinges a man may get great profite and vantage? But as for me, howe do ye thinke, that I can vse or order suche thinges, that hadde neuer none? But me thought, that all though a man had nother money, nor no goodis, yet there was a certaine science of gydyng and ordryng of an house. And what letteth you, that ye may not haue the same science? Loke what doth let a man to playe vpon recorders, if nother he had neuer none hym selfe / nor bo­rowed none of no body: the selfe same im­pediment [Page 8] haue I in the ordring of an house. For I nother neuer had instrumentes / that is goodes and money of myn owne to lerne by hit, nor there was neuer no bodye, that charged me with his goodes, to ouer se thē, or to order them / excepte ye parauenture be disposed so to do. But ye knowe wel, that they that lerne firste to play vpon an harpe, they spille the harpe: So if I shulde nowe lerne on your householde / howe to kepe an house / I am aferde / lest I shulde destroye your house. Ha, ye go about very busily and redily to auoyde, that ye wol not helpe me to beare, and susteyne with me parte of my busines. By my fay that do I not: I woll be glad with all myne harte to shewe you al that euer I can. But I thinke this, that if ye came to my house for some fyre, and I had none / if I brought you to an o­ther place, where ye myghte haue some, ye wolde not be displeased with me. And if ye came and asked me water, and I hadde none, if I brought you in to a place, where ye myghte drawe some, ye coude not blame me. And if ye wolde, that I shulde teache you musicke / if I dyd shewe you other men more experte in it than I am my selfe, and that wolde be gladde and fayne to teache you, what coude ye blame me, if I dyd so? [Page] I coude not do it with a good cause. Ther­fore I wyll shewe you, that these thynges, which ye desire so instantly of me, that there be other men more counnyng, and more ex­perte in them than I am. And this I grāt you, that I haue hadde a greatte mynde to knowe, whiche were the moste counnynge / and the mooste experte in all the citie. For whan I dyd some tyme considre / that in one worke, one busines, and one thynge doinge some waxed verye poure, and some verye riche, I marueiled, and me thought, it was a thynge to be well consydered / howe that shuld be. And thus consideryng, I founde, that this happened none other wyse / than the thynge it selfe and reason wolde. For I sawe, that they that behaued them selfes rasshely in their busines / had domage and losse by it: and they, that with discretion, witte, and good aduisement applied theyr busynes / broughte theyr matters to passe more quickely, more easily / and with more auantage. Of the whiche I thynke that ye may lerne / and so by the grace of god come to be a very riche man, with moche winning and lucre. Nowe by my faith I wyl neuer let you be in reste, vntyll the tyme ye shewe afore these frendes of yours / that ye speake of / that that ye haue promysed me.

[Page 9]But what wolde ye saye, if I dyd shewe you some men, the whiche haue builded for verye moche money / vnprofitable houses / without any good caste, or any good cōmo­ditie: and other that for lesse coste a great dele, haue made houses / lackynge nothyng that longeth to an house / wyll ye not saye, that I do shewe you a poynt of a good or­drer of an house? Yes veryly said Crito. What if I shewe you nexte and according to the same, that some men haue moche house­holde stouffe / and of all sortes, and whan they haue nede of it, they can not vse it, but it is to seche, and they can not tell whether hit be luste or saue leyde vp? And for this cause they be wonderslye greued in theyr myndes, and vexe & trouble their seruātes, and nothinge els. And also other men, the whiche haue no more / but rather lesse / haue euery thyng redy at hande / whan they haue nede of it. What shulde be the cause of it, gentil Socrates / but that the tone doth cast asyde euery thynge folisshelye, without any order: and the tother layth vp euery thinge in his place? There ye saide well / sayde Socrates. And he not only setteth eue­rye thynge in his place / but also in suche a place as is mete and conuenient to set hit in. [Page] Me semeth, sayd Cri. that ye say, that this also is a poynt of a good order of an house. And what if I shewe you, that in one place al the bounde men & seruantes be tyed faste, & yet they runne awaye often tymes: and in an other place they be losed / wyllyng to a­byde & labour with al theyr hartes, wyll ye not thynke this a good poynt of a house ke­per, worthy to be loked vpon? Yes mary, said Critobulus, & very worthy to be loked vpon. And what if I shewe you hous­bande men / of the whiche some complayne and saye, that they dye for hunger, for all theyr husbandry, and some that haue plen­tie / of al maner of thynges necessary, by the reason of their husbandry. Ye mary, sayd Critobulus, parauenture they bestowe their money and theyr goodes / not where they shulde / but in suche thynges as be hurtefull bothe to them and to theyr houses. In dede there be some suche / sayde Socrates / but I do not speke of them, but of those, the which cal them selfe husbande men, and yet they can scant get their meate & their drinke. And what shulde be the cause of this gentyl So? I wyll bringe you vnto them, sayde So. and whā ye se them, than shal ye lerne. Mary that wyll I, if that I can. Ye but [Page 10] first ye muste proue your selfe, if ye shall be able to knowe it, whan ye se them. It co­meth in to my mynde nowe, that ye wolde rise very yerly, and go a great waye, to se enterludes played, & that ye wolde intreate me nedes to go with you, but ye neuer had me to suche a sighte. Than ye thinke, myne owne Socrates, that I am worthye to be laughed to scorne of you. Ye but of your selfe moche more. But what if I do shewe you some men / the whiche by the reason of kepyng of horses, haue bene brought to ex­streme pouerte, and other / the whiche by the reason of hit, haue made them selfes ryche men / and haue gotten so great substāce, that they liue lyke lordes? I haue sene them, and I knowe them bothe, but I haue neuer the more vantage for that. The cause of it is, that ye beholde them lyke wyse / as ye loke vpon the plaiers of enterludes, not to thintēt that ye may be a poete, but for a pa­stime & a recreation. And parauēture ye do well in that, for ye be not mynded to be a poete, but where ye be cōpelled to kepe and fynde horses, wyll ye not iuge your selfe a foole, if ye go not aboute to studie a reme­die, that ye be not ignoraunte in that be­halfe, seinge that the selfe same thynges be [Page] good to the vse, and profitable to be solde. Your mynde is that I shulde breke horses? No by my faith it, no more than if ye wolde haue a good laborer, I wolde gyue you coū sell to bringe hym vp of a childe. But there be ages bothe of horses and of men, the whiche be immediately profitable / and do daily so growe, that they do more good one daye than an other. Furthermore I can shewe you some men, the which haue so vsed and ordred their wyues / that they comforte them and helpe them towarde the incresing of their house: and some that haue suche wyues, the which destroy vtterly the house, and so the moste parte of men haue. But who is to be blamed for this / the husbande or the wyfe / good Socrates? A shepe / if hit do not well, for the moste parte we do blame the sheperde. And a horse moste co­monly / if he be skyttisshe, and do some displesure, we blame the breker. And a wyfe lyke wyse, if her husbande teache hir well, if she do not folowe it, she is parauenture to blame. But if he do not teache her, if she be rude / vnwomanly / and witles / is not he to be blamed? Yes by my faith, sayde Cri. And seinge that we be frendes, & may speke plainly betwene our selfes, Is there euer [Page 11] any other wyse man, that ye truste & charge so moche in your busynes, as ye do your wyfe? No forsoth, sayd he. And is there any, that ye commune lesse with, than ye do with her? No by my faith, and if there be any, they be very fewe. Ye maried her ve­rye yonge / whan she had nother sene nor harde moche of the worlde. Wherfore hit were more to be maruailed at it, if she knew and dyd as she shulde / than if she dyd amisse. Crito. They, the whiche ye say, haue good wyues, haue they taughte them so in dede? Socra. It is a thynge not to stande longe vpon. For I wyll brynge you my wyfe Aspasia / the whiche shall shewe you all this better than I my selfe. But me thynkethe that a wyfe, beinge a good companion / and a good felowe to her husbande in a house, is very necessary / and within a littel as moche worthe as the husbande. For commonlye goodes and substāce do come in to the house by the labour and payne of the man, but the woman is she for the moste parte, that ke­peth and bestoweth it, where nede is. And if these two thinges stande well to gether / and be wel ordeined, the houses do increace, if not / they muste nedes decaye.

More ouer me thinketh, that I can shewe [Page] you in all sciences them, that do worke and labour, accordynge as they shulde, if ye thynke that it nedeth. But what nede you to reherse them all good Socrates / sayde Critobulus? For hit is nother possible for a man to haue worke men of all facul­ties / suche as shulde be, nor hym selfe to be experte in all. But as for suche sciences / as be mooste honorable, and maye become me well to occupie them / them I wolde ye dyd shewe me, and also those men, the which applie them selfes vnto them. And ye of your syde helpe to teache me, and further me in them as moche as ye can. Ye speke very well frende Critobulus, sayde So­crates. For suche craftes, as be called handye craftes, they be very abiecte and vile / and littell regarded and estemed in cities and cōmon welthes: For they do destroye the bodies of those, that do occupie them / whan they make them to sytte euermore at home, and to be fedde vppe alwaye in the shade, and some make them to stande all the day staryng on the fire. And whan the body is ones tender and feble / the stomacke and spirite muste nedes to waxe a greatte deale the weaker. And agayne, they haue but smalle leysure to sette theyr mynde and di­ligence [Page 12] to do theyr frendes any good, nor also the common welthe. Wherfore suche men seme to be but a smalle comforte to theyr frendes at a nede, nor no good men to succour theyr countree in tyme of ieopar­die. And for a suertie in some cities and common welthes, and specially suche as be daylye in warre / hit is not lawfull to neuer a cytesyn to occupie no handye crafte.

And what faculties wyll ye counsayle me to vse gentyll Socrates? So. Let not vs thynke scorne, nor be ashamed to folowe the kynge of the Persis. For they saye, that he / supposynge the science of warre / and also of husbandrye to be mooste hono­rable / and also necessarye amonge other faculties, dothe regarde and exercise them wondersly. And whan Critobulus harde that / he sayde: Do ye thynke, that the kynge of Persia carethe any thynge for husbandrye? If we consydre hit after this maner, sayde Socrates, we shall par­auenture come to knowlege, whether he dothe or not. For euery man graunteth, that he settethe sore his studie vpon suche thīges, as longe to warre. For it is apoin­ted to euery lieutenāt & lorde of the coūtres [Page] vnderneth hym, howe many men of armes, morispikes, bylles, archers, and crosbowes they shall haue redy in theyr wages, either to kepe his subiectes frō rebellion for feare, or to kepe the countre, if enmyes do inuade it. Beside these he layth garisons in all the towres and castels, and there is a capitayne apoynted to paye them truely theyr wages, and to se that there be no faute in hit. And the kynge causeth euery twelue monthe the musters to be made of al them that be in his wages, and be apoynted to be redye in har­neis at any tyme / and so bryngeth them all together, those reserued that be in garisons, in to a place, that they call the place of con­gregation. And suche as be nighe his ma­nour and his dwellyng place, he ouerloketh them hym selfe. But they that dwelle in farre countrees, he sendethe thyther some, that he trusteth beste to haue the ouer syghte of them. And those heedes, rulers, and ca­pitaines, whether they haue many or fewe vnder them, if they brynge forthe theyr full nombre / that is apoynted vnto them / well harneised and well horsed, and wel furnis­shed of al maner of thinges, he gyueth very great prayse and honour to the lieutenantes and to the lordes, and gyuethe them many [Page 13] great gyftes and rewardes, so that they be riche for euer. But whan he fyndeth / that his lordes, his lieutenauntes, and deputies haue no regarde to the capitaynes of his soudiours, but catche and polle, and care but onely for their owne vantage, he punissheth them sore, he putteth thē out of their officis, and setteth other in their stede. In doinge those thīges, there is no man that doubteth / but that he applieth his mynde and his stu­die very sore to warre. But beside this / al the countrey / that is therby / where he dwelleth / he rydeth aboute hym selfe / takynge hede and markynge howe hit is tylled and laboured. But whan a countrey is so farre of, that he can not come to se it hym selfe / he sendeth them, that he trustethe beste, to ouer se it. And whan he fyndeth, that his lieu­tenantes and deputies do kepe the countrey wel inhabited / the grounde wel plowed and laboured, full of suche trees as the countre wyll beare, he promoteth them to the rule of more coūtres, he gyueth them great pre­sentes, and dothe them great honour. But whan he findeth the countre deserte and vn­habited, the grounde vntilled and vnlabou­red, by cause of their negligence / wronges doinge, extorsions, & cruelties, he punissheth [Page] them, he putteth them out of theyr offices / and setteth other in theyr rowmes. In do­inge these thinges, do ye thynke, that he set­teth lesse his mynde to haue his countre wel replenysshed of dwellers, and well tylled and laboured / than that the soudiours shuld defende hit well? Moreouer of the lieu­tenantes and deputies / that he hath, One man hath not the charge of two thynges at ones. For some of them be apoynted to haue the ouersyghte of the husbande men and labourers / and to gether the tithes and tributes of them. And there be other, that haue the ouersighte of the soudiours / and of the garisons. And if the lieutenant of the garison do not his duetie in kepynge and defendynge the countree, he that is the lieu­tenaunt of the housbande men and labou­rers / accuseth the tother lieutenaunt, that they can not plie theyr worke for lacke of good defence. But if the lieutenaunt of the garyson dothe his deutye / and kepethe the countre in peace, so that they may worke at theyr pleasure / and the lieutenant of the husbande men dothe not se to the countrey / that hit be well inhabited / and that the housbande men applie theyr worke as they shulde, than the lieutenant of the garyson [Page 14] accuseth him agayne. For whan the hous­bande men do not labour well, the soudi­ours can scante gette vitayles / nor the kyng can haue his tribute. And in some coun­tres of Persia a great lorde, that they call Satrapa, occupiethe the rowme of bothe lieutenantes. Than spake Critobulus, and sayde: If the kynge dothe, as ye say / he taketh as moche hede to husbandrye, as he doth to warre. So. More ouer in what so euer countre he liethe / and where so euer he makethe his abydynge, he settethe his mynde to haue goodlye fayre gardeynes / that they calle in theyr tonge Paradise, fulle of all maner of thynges, that the erthe bryngeth forthe. And there he by­dethe for the moste parte / as longe as the tyme of the yere dothe not lette hym.

Than by my faythe, sayde Critobulus, se­inge that he bydeth there hym selfe, he must nedes do his diligence, that these gardeynes maye be as fayre and as goodly as can be / well replenisshed with trees / and all ma­ner of thynges / that the erthe can brynge forthe. And also some say, good Cri­tobulus, sayde Socrates, that whan the kynge gyueth any rewardes, that he calleth them fyrste, that haue behaued them selfes [Page] manly in the warres, bicause it were to none effecte to tylle and labour the grounde, ex­cepte there were some, that shuld defende it. And nexte to them he callethe those / that haue prouided / that the countre shulde not be ydell, but well occupied and laboured / saying, that the valiant men of warre coude not lyue, if the good labourers were not. And they say, that Cyrus, the whiche hath ben a very famous, and an excellent kynge, saide vpon a tyme vnto them, that he called vnto hym to gyue them rewardes, that he hym selfe was well worthy to haue the re­wardes of them bothe. For he saide, that he was verye good bothe to se the countrey wel laboured, and also to kepe & defende it. Forsothe, saide Critobulus, if Cirus dyd say so, he dyd shewe plainly, that he had as greatte pleasure / that the countre shulde be wel occupied, as to haue good mē of warre. So. By my faithe, if Cirus had lyued, he wold haue proued a very noble prince: and of that he shewed many great and euident tokens at diuers tymes, and amonge the tother / whan he came forthe agaynste his brother to trie by batayle, who shulde be kynge. For they say / that from Cirus no man fled to the kyng / but many thousandes [Page 15] lefte the kynge to come and serue Cirus. And me thynketh this is a great argument of a princis vertue / whan men do obey hym with their owne good wyll, and be glad to abyde with hym in tyme of ieopardie. For Cirus frendes stode fightynge aboute hym whiles he was yet alyue, and whan he was slayne / they fightyng moste valiantly were slayne all beside hym, excepte Arieus, the whiche was set in the lefte wynge.

This gentyll Cirus, whan Lysander came to hym, to brynge hym presentes from the cities of Grece confederated vnto him, they say, as Lysāder shewed hym selfe to a frēde of his in the towne of Megara / that he re­ceiued him with moche humanite, & amonge other thynges he shewed hym a gardeyne, that was called the Paradis of Sardis. But whan Lysander beganne to maruayle at it, by cause the trees were so faire and so egally sette / and the orders of the trees lay streyghte one agaynst an other, and made goodly angles & corners well ꝓporcioned / and many swete and pleasant sauours came to theyr noses, whan they were walkynge, he wondrynge therupon sayde thus: For­sothe Cirus the great beautifulnes of these thinges is a greatte maruayle to me, but I [Page] wonder moche more of him, that hath mea­sured and sette them thus in order. Than Cirus, whan he herde this dyd reioyce and saye: All these that ye se I haue measured them, and sette them in order, and I can shewe you some trees, that I haue set with myne owne handes. And Lysander whan he had loked vpon hym, and beholden his goodly apparell, and felte the good fauour that came from it / and the estimable fayre­nes of his golden chaynes / his rynges, and his precious stones, sayde: What saye ye Cirus, haue ye sette any of these with your owne handes? Than Cirus answered. Do ye maruayle of this Lysander? By the faythe that I owe to god, whan I am well at ease / I neuer go to dyner vnto the time I haue done somwhat, outher in feates of armes, or in some poynte of husbandrye tyl I swete. Than, whan Lysander herde this, he toke hym by the hande and sayde: Me thynkethe Cirus, ye be fortunate not without a cause. For ye be fortunate beinge a good man.

And this I reherse vnto you myne owne Critobulus, sayd Socrates, for this cause, that ye maye se / that they that be ryche and fortunate, can not well kepe them frome [Page 18] husbandrye. For hit is suche an exercise, and suche a busynes / that a man maye haue pleasure in hit, bothe to encreace and mul­tiplie his goodes, and also to exercise the bodye so / that hit shall be able to do all maner of thynges, that longethe for an honest man to do. For fyrste of all, the grounde bryngeth forthe all suche maner of thynges, that a man is fedde and nou­rysshed with, and hit bryngeth forthe also suche thynges, that a man may haue plea­sure by hit. Moreouer, hit gyuethe vs all suche thynges, as we nede to trymme and dresse the auters and ymages withall, and that with mooste pleasaunt syghtes and sauours. Furthermore of meates necessa­rye for mannes vse, some hit bryngethe by hit selfe, and some hit nourysshethe. For the crafte of kepynge of sheepe is an­nexed to husbandrye, so that we maye vse them at our owne pleasure. And though hit gyuethe vs plentye of all maner of thynges / yet hit dothe nat suffre vs together them with softenes and tendernes / but vsethe vs to be harde and stronge / in wynter by the reason of the colde, and in somer by the reason of the heate. [Page] And as for them, the which do labour with theyr owne handes, hit maketh them bygge and myghtye, and they that occupie husban­drye but onely with ouer lokynge & takinge hede to other mennes warkes, it quickeneth and maketh them lyke men / makynge them to ryse yarely in the mornynge, and causyng them to walke a great waye. For bothe in the feldes and also in the cities, euery thyng that a man doth to any purpose, muste nedes be done in tyme and in season. Moreouer if he wyll be a horse man, and defende his countre on horsebacke, a horse may no wher be better fedde than in the countre. And if he wyll be a footeman, housbandry maketh a man stronge bodied, and causethe hym to exercise hym selfe goinge a huntyng, whan it gyueth lyghtly meate to the dogges, and the grounde bryngeth vppe and nourissheth wylde beastis. And the horses / and lyke wyse the dogges / thus holpen by the waye of husbandry, do agayne some seruice to the grounde. For the horse beareth hym yerly in the mornynge, that wyll se the grounde be nat let alone vntylled & vntrymmed / and at nyghte beareth hym home agayne, if he tarye neuer so late. And the dogges kepe away wylde beastis / that they spille not the [Page 17] frute, and kylle the shepe, and make a man to be sure in a wyldernes. More ouer, it comforteth and styrreth husbande men to be bolde, and to stande manly to defende theyr countre, seinge it leaueth the frutes abrode in the playne to be vsurped of hym that is stronger. And what facultie wyll make a man more apte to runne, to shote / and also to leape, than husbandrye? What science yeldeth more againe to thē that do labour? What science receiueth him, that is studious, with greatter pleasure, seinge whan he co­meth / it gyueth hym leaue to take what he wyll? Where shall a straunger be better welcomed to make hym good chere? Wher shall a man haue better commoditie to kepe his wynter with fire inoughe and hotte ba­thes? And where is more pleasant dwel­lynge for goodly waters / gentyll wyndes and shadowe, than in the feldes? Where may a man make better feastis / and more triumphant bankettes?The praise of husban­drye. What other place do seruātes loue better? What other place doth a wyfe lyke more? Where do childrē desire more to be? Where be frendes bet­ter receyued / and gladder to be? Forsoth me thynketh it a maruaylous thynge / if any honest man can fynde any substance, that he [Page] deliteth more in, or if he can fynde any oc­cupation outher more pleasant than this is, or more profitable for his lyuynge. And moreouer, the grounde techeth men Iustice, if they haue the witte to lerne it. For they that do for it, and haue care for it / it rewar­deth them with farre moche more.

And if they / that haue bene brought vppe in husbandrye, by some sodayne chance of en­myes, they that be lordes of the countre can not tyll the grounde, they may go in to their enmies countres / seinge they haue ben well and hardly broughte vp, and gette there as moche, if god be not agaynst them, as wyll suffice them to lyue with. And hit is often tymes more sure to seke for his lyuynge, in tyme of warre / with weapons of warre / than with instrumentes of husbandry.

Husbandry also teacheth men to helpe one an other. If we wyl go to warre, we must haue men, nor the grounde can not be la­boured without men. And therfore he that wyll be a good husbande man / he must get hym good lustye worke men, and wyllynge to do after hym / and obeye hym. And the selfe same thyng he must go about to bringe to passe, that leadeth an armie to fyghte a­gaynst his enmies, gyuyng great rewardes [Page 18] vnto them, that behaue thē selfes like good valiant men, and punisshe them that be sto­burne / and wyll not be ordred. And he that is a good husbāde, must as often times cal vpon his labourers, and comfort them, as the capitayne doth his soudiours. And bounde men haue as great nede to be com­forted, and meynteyned with good hope, as other fre men / yea and rather more, to thēde they runne not away, but be gladde to byde stylle. And surely he sayde verye well, that called husbandrye the mother and the nource of all other sciences. For if husban­drye dothe stande well, all other sciences & faculties do the better. But if the groūde be barayne / and can beare no frute, al other sciences be all moste spilled both by see and by lande.

Whan Critobulus hadde harde this / he spake after this maner. Me thinketh, good Socrates, ye speke very wel in this matter. But ye knowe very wel, that the most parte of suche thinges / as longe to husbandrye / a man can not caste them afore hande. For often tymes hayle stones, drought, or con­tinuall rayne, myste, or vermyne, that eate vp the sede that is in the grounde / do put vs beside our intēt and purpose, if it were neuer [Page] so good. And shepe lyke wyse / if they be in neuer so good pasture / there comethe a sickenes, that destroyeth thē al. Socrates, whan he harde that / said agayne. I thought that ye knewe well, that god is aboue all / as well in husbandry as he is in warre. We se that they that wyll make warre, that afore they begynne, they make their vowes, prayers / and sacrifices, desyryng to knowe, what is best to do / and what is not beste. And thynke ye, that in those thynges, that longe to husbandry / we shulde haue lesse re­course to god? Be ye sure of this, that good and honest men do worshyp almighty god with oblations / and prayers, for all theyr frutes, theyr oxen, theyr shepe, and theyr horses, and generally for al that they haue. Me thynketh good Socrates, said Critobulus, that ye speke very well in this matter, whan ye byd to begyn euery thinge with the trust of the helpe / and of the grace of god / seinge that god is aboue al thinges / as well in warre as in peace. And therfore we wyll endeuour vs to do so. But seinge your purpose was to speake here of the or­dryng of an house / the whiche ye haue lefte, and be entred in to an other tale, endeuour your selfe to shewe vs a littell more, what [Page 19] foloweth nexte to that that ye lefte. For nowe that I haue harde you saye that that ye haue spokē, me semeth I se moche better than afore / what a man must do for to lyue. Wherfore Socrates sayde: But wyll ye, that we reherse all that we haue spoken a­fore, and agreed in, to thintent that we may, if we can, go forth in this matter / bringyng suche thīg as we shal like wise agree vpō? Me thynketh that lyke wyse / as hit wolde be a great pleasure, whan two men haue lente money one to an other, to agree vpon the rekeninge: So nowe in our cōmunica­tion / vttrynge our myndes one to an other, if we myght gree in one tale.

Well than, sayd Socrates, we agreed vpon this, that the ordrynge of an house is the name of a science, and that semeth to be the science, to order and increace the house. And we toke the house for all a mans pos­sessions and goodes. And we sayde, that was truely the possession and goodes of a man, the whiche was profitable vnto hym for his lyuynge / and we founde al that profitable / that a man coude vse and order. And therfore we thoughte impossible for a man to lerne all maner of sciences. And as for all the handye craftes, we thoughte [Page] beste to expelle them from vs / lyke wyse as many cities and common welthes dyd. For they seme bothe to distroye a mannes body, and to breke a mannes harte and stomacke. And herof / we sayde, that this myghte be an euident token. For if the enmyes dyd inuade the countres, and one dyd sette the husbande men and the artificers a syde diui­ded in two partes, and asked them, whether they had leuer to come forthe and pitche the felde to fighte with their enmyes, or els to gyue vp the feldes / and kepe and defende the cities: They that haue bene vsed in the feldes and husbandrye wolde be gladde to fighte, to delyuer the countre. But on the tother side, the artificers wolde do that that they haue bene broughte vp in, that is to sytte stylle / neuer labourynge, nor neuer puttynge them selfes in preace, nor in ieo­pardie. More ouer we commended hous­bandrye for a good exercise and a good oc­cupation for a good and an honest man / by the whiche mē may haue al that is necessarie for them. For it is an occupation very sone lerned, and very pleasant to be occupied in it: the whiche also maketh a mannes bodye myghty, stronge / well complexioned / and well fauoured / his stomacke and his spirite [Page 20] to be alwaye lustye and redye to do for his frendes / and for his countre.

More ouer, we iugged that hit gaue men harte and courage to be valiant and hardy / seinge the frutes,why hus­bandry is moste ho­norable. that the grounde brought forthe, laye abrode in the playne, without trenches, boulwarkes, or fortresses. And therfore that kynde of lyuynge semed to be moste honorable, and beste estemed in cities and common welthes / bicause hit makethe good men / well disposed, and well mynded to do good for the common welthe.

Than sayde Critobulus, I am after my mynde sufficiently perswaded / that a man may haue a very good, an honest, and a pleasant lyuynge in occupienge husbandry. But where ye sayd, that ye knewe the cause, that some dyd so vse and occupie husbandrye / that they had by hit plentie of all maner of thinges, that they neded: and some agayne, that so ordred them selfes in hit, that hit a­uayled them nothynge, these two thynges wolde I gladly here of you, to thentent we may do that that is good, and eschewe that that is contrarye.

But what if I do tel you swete Critobulus, sayde Socrates, euen from the begynnyng, what cōmunication I had ones with a man, [Page] the whiche might be called truely / & in dede a good honest man? That wolde I here verye fayne sayde Critobulus. For I my selfe do greatly desyre / that I may be wor­thy of that goodly name. Than wyll I tell you / howe I came fyrste to the conside­ration of this. For as touchynge good carpenters, good ioyners, good peynters, good ymagers, me thought, that I myghte in a littel tyme se and beholde their warkes moste allowed and best accepted / that made them to be so called. But to thēde I might se and beholde, howe they that hadde that goodly and honorable name of a good and an honest man, dyd behaue them selfes to be worthy of it, my mynde dyd coueyte greatly to talke with one of them. And firste of all for bicause Good and Honest, wente to gether, whan so euer I sawe any goodly man, I drewe to hym / and wente aboute to knowe of hym, if I myghte se Good and Honest, in a goodly man. But it wold nat be. For me thoughte that I founde / that there were many with goodlye bodies and fayre visages / that hadde but yuell dispo­sed and vngratious soules.

Than me thought it best to enquere no fur­ther of goodly bodies / but to get me to one [Page 21] of them / that were called good and honest men. And for bicause I harde, that Ischo­machus was generally, bothe of men, wo­men, citezins and straungers, called and ta­ken for a good honeste man, me thoughte I coude do no better, than to proue howe I myghte cōmune with hym. And vpon a tyme, whan I sawe hym sittyng in a porche of a churche, for bicause me thought he was at leyser, I came to hym, and set me downe by hym, and saide: What is the cause good Ischomachus, that ye, whiche be wonte to be euer more occupied, syt here nowe after this maner, for I haue sene you for the most parte euermore doinge some what, & lightly neuer ydell, excepte hit were very littell? Nor ye shulde not nowe haue seene me good Socrates, said he, sytting after this maner, if I had not apoynted with certaine straun­gers to tarye here for them. And if ye were not here, where wolde ye haue bene, or howe wolde ye haue ben occupied, sayde I to hym? For I wolde knowe of you very fayne, what thyng ye do, that maketh you to be called a good and an honest man? The good cōplection of your body sheweth well ynough, that ye byde not alway sloug­ginge at home. And than Ischomachus, [Page] laughynge at that that I sayde, what do ye, that makethe you to be called a good and an honeste man, and reioysynge in his harte / as me thoughte by hym / sayde? I can not telle if any man callethe me so / whan you and he talke of me, but whan I muste paye money / or for taxes, preastis / or subsidies, they calle me playnelye by my name Ischomachus. And in dede good Socrates, I do nat alwaye byde at home, for my wyfe can order well inoughe suche thynges as I haue there. Yea but this wolde I knowe of you very fayne, Dyd ye your selfe brynge your wyfe to this; or els had her father and her mother brought her vppe, sufficiently to order an house a­fore she came to you? Ischo. Howe coude she haue bene so, whan she was but fyftene yere olde, whan I maryed her? and afore she had ben so negligētly brought vppe / that she had but very littell seene, ve­ry littell harde, and very littell spoken of the worlde. And I trowe ye wolde not thynke it sufficient in her, if she coude do no­thynge but spynne and carde / and sette the hande maydens to worke. As for suche thynges as concerne the lower partes of the bely, good Socrates, sayde he, she had [Page 22] bene very well broughte vp, the whiche is no smalle poynte of good bryngynge vppe, bothe in a man and in a woman. And dyd ye teache your wyfe all the remenant, saide I, so that she is able to take hede to all ma­ner of thynges? Yes, sayde he, but not a­fore I had made my prayers to all myghty god, desirynge hym, that he wolde gyue me the grace, to teache her so, and her to lerne that of me, that shulde be good & profitable to vs bothe. And dyd your wyfe make the selfe same prayer with you, sayde I? Yes mary, saide Ischomachus, and it semed in a maner, that god dyd promise euidently, and she like wise shewed with clere and ma­nifeste tokens, that she wolde very well re­garde and take hede to that that she shulde be taught. For goddis sake good Ischo­machus, sayde I, what dyd ye begynne to teache hir firste: for I had leauer here you tell me suche a thynge / than if ye shulde di­scriue me a iustynge or a turnament, though it had bene neuer so triumphant? Mary I wyl tell you Socrates, saide he. Whan we were ones so wel acqueinted, & so familiar / that we talked to gether, I examined her after this maner. Tell me good bedfelowe, did ye euer cast in your mīde, for what cause [Page] I haue taken you, and your father and your mother deliuered you vnto me? I trowe ye knowe well inoughe, that I toke you not for nede, that I had of a bedfelowe to lye with me, for I myghte haue had inowe at my commandment. But whan I had con­sidered in my mynde, and your father and your mother lyke wyse, that hit were well done, to fynde out a good one to be parte taker both of our house, and of our children̄ / I chose you afore all other, and your father and mother like wise chose me. Wherfore if here after god gyue vs the grace / that we may haue children to gether, we shall take counsayle / howe to brynge them vp and in­structe them in vertue. For it shall be for bothe our profettes to haue them, bothe to defende vs / and to helpe and nourisshe vs in our olde age. Now the house that we haue is common to vs bothe. For all that euer I haue, I haue shewed you and delyuered it vnto you to kepe for both our behoues: and ye lyke wyse haue done the same. And ye may not caste in your mynde, whiche of vs bothe broughte more. [...] good les­ [...]on for a wyfe. But this ye muste knowe for a suertie, that loke whiche of vs twayne doth behaue him selfe, and doth best in this felowshyp / that he bryngeth more / [Page 23] and his parte is the better.

Than my wyfe, good Socrates, answered here vnto after this maner. Wherin can I helpe you, saide she? or wherin maye my littell power do you any good? For truly my mother tolde me, that all to gether laye in your handes, and that hit belonged vnto me / to be sobre and lyue in chastite. Mary so it is good wyfe, sayde I, and so my fa­ther tolde me to. But hit is the poynt of a sobre husbande / and of a sobre wyfe / to do so, that that, the whiche they haue, may be well ordred and guyded / & to encreace and get more to it, by some good & rightful way. And what do ye se in me, sayde my wyfe, that I may encreace our house, if I do ap­plie it? Mary, sayd I, if ye endeuoir your selfe to do those thinges to the beste of your power / the whiche bothe god wylleth, that ye shulde do, & the lawe exhorteth you to it. And what thynges be those, sayde she? Verily, saide I, no smalle thynges, excepte ye thynke, that that Bee dothe but a littell good, the whiche remaineth styl in the hyue, to ouer se the warkes, whan the other go abrode to gether floures. And forsothe me thynketh / that god almyghty hath sette to gether for many good causes and consy­derations, [Page] that goodlye couple / that is the husbande and the wyfe, to thentente that they shulde be moste profitable one to an o­ther in that good felawshyp.why wed­locke was ordeyned. Fyrst of all to thentent that mankynd do not decaye and faile, this ioly couple lieth to gether and in­gendreth children. Than againe by reason herof, they bringe forth chyldren to helpe & soccour thē in theyr olde age. More ouer the maner and lyuyng of men, doth greatly differ from the lyfe of wylde beastis, the whiche be alway abrode in the feldes. For it is mete for men to haue houses. Wher­fore it is conuenient / that they / whiche wyll haue somwhat to brynge in to their houses / haue mē with them to do those warkes / that muste be done abrode in the feldes. For tyllynge of the grounde, sowynge of the corne / settyng of trees, & kepynge of beastis at grasse and pasture, be all done abrode. But agayne it is nedeful, whan those frutes be conueyed in to the house / to ouerse & saue them / and to do all suche thynges as muste be done at home. Babis and yonge chyl­dren muste nedes be broughte vppe within the house. Breadde muste be baked / and the meate sodde & dressed within the house. Also spynnynge / cardynge / and weauynge / [Page 24] muste be done within the house.

And where that bothe those thynges, that muste be done abrode,A house wyfes office. and those that be done within the house do require care and diligence: me thynkethe that god hathe caused nature to shewe playnlye, that a wo­man is borne to take hede of all suche thin­ges, as muste be done at home. For he hath made man of bodye / harte / and sto­macke stronge and myghtye to suffre and endure hete and colde, to iourneye, and go a warfare. Wherfore god hath in a ma­ner commaunded and charged hym with those thynges / that be done abrode oute of the house. He also remembrynge, that he hath ordeyned the woman to brynge vp yonge chyldren, he hath made her farre more tender in loue towarde her chyldren than the husbande. And where he hath ordeyned, that the woman shulde kepe those thynges, that the man getteth and bringeth home to her, and he knowynge verye well, that for to kepe a thynge surelye, hit is not the worste poynte to be doubtful and feare­full, he dealed to her a greatte deale more feare, than he dyd to the man.

And he also perceyuynge, that if any man dothe hym wronge, the whiche laboureth [Page] and worketh without, he must defende hym selfe, he distributed to the man a great deale more boldnes. And for bicause it beho­ueth, that bothe they do gyue and receyue, he hath gyuen them indifferently remem­brance and diligence, in so moche / that it is harde to discerne, whether kinde hath more of them / either the man or the woman.

He hath also graunted them indifferently to refraine them selfes from suche thinges, as is conuenient they do. And hath gyuen them power and auctorite, that loke in what thynge the either of them dothe the better / he bringeth the more away with hym. But bicause the natures and the dispositions of them bothe be not egallye so perfecte in all these thinges, they haue so moche the more nede the tone of the tother. And this couple is so moche the more profitable the tone to the tother, bicause that that the tone lacketh the tother hath. wherfore good wyfe, seinge we se that, whiche god hath ordeined for vs bothe, we muste enforce / and ende­uour our selfes to do bothe our partis in the beste wyse. The lawe semeth to comforte vs and exhorte vs to it, the whiche coupleth man & wyfe to gether. And lyke wyse as god makethe them come to gether to gette [Page 25] children, So the lawe wyll haue them liue to gether partakers one of an others goo­des in good felawshyp. Lyke wyse the lawe sheweth, and god commandeth, that it is beste for eche of them to do theyr parte. For it is more honestie for a womā to kepe her house, than to walke aboute. And it is more shame for a man to byde slouggynge at home / than to applie his mynde to suche thynges as muste be done abrode. But if any man dothe contrarye to that that he is naturally borne to / parauenture god wyll remembre, that he breaketh his statutis and decrees / and wyll punisshe hym / outher for bicause he is negligent in that that he shulde do / or elles bycause he takethe vpon hym that that belongeth to the wyfe. Me thynketh also / that the maistres bee / that kepeth the hyue, dothe lyke wyse that that god hath ordeyned her vnto. And what dothe the maistres bee, sayde she,A good en­sample of bees. wherby it may be likened to that that I muste do? For bicause, sayde he, hit bydeth alwaye in the hyue, and wyll not suffre no bees to be ydell: and they that shulde worke without / she sendeth thē to theyr worke. And what so euer any of them bryngethe home / she marketh / receyueth, and saueth it, vntyll the [Page] tyme come that hit muste be occupied. And whan the tyme cometh, that it muste be oc­cupied / than she distributeth euery thing ac­cordyng as equite requireth. And she cau­seth them that do byde within to weaue and make the faire hony comes after the beste wise, and taketh hede to the yōge bees, that they be well fedde and brought vppe. But whan they be come to that age / and to that point, that they be able to worke, she sēdeth them out with one, the whiche they folowe as their gyde and capitayne. And muste I do so to, sayde my wyfe? Ye forsothe sayde I: For ye muste alway byde within the house, and those men / the whiche muste worke abrode, ye must sende them to it: and they that muste worke within, ye must com­mande them, and be ouer them, to se them do it. And that that is brought in / ye must receiue it. And that, whiche muste be spente of it, ye muste parte and deuide it. And that that remaineth, ye muste ley it vp and kepe it safe tyl tyme of nede. And beware / that that / whiche was apoynted to be spente in a twelue monthe, be not spente in a monthe. And whan the wolle is broughte in to you, ye muste se that hit be carded and sponne / that clothe maye be made of hit. Also ye [Page 26] muste se that the corne, whiche is broughte in to you, be not so moustye and dousty / that hit maye not be eaten.Howe ser­uātes must be entreted But one thynge specially aboue all other there is, that ye muste be carefull fore, and that shall gette you great fauour and loue, that is, if any of our seruantes, happe to falle sicke, that ye endeuour your selfe the best that ye can / not onely to cherysshe them, but also to helpe that they may haue their helthe agayne. By my feythe, sayde my wyfe, hit is a verye gratious and a kynde dede. For whan they be ones holpen, and eased / they wyll cunne vs very good thanke, and be the more louynge and feythfull vnto vs.

And me thoughte, sayde Ischomachus, that hit was an answere of a good and an honeste wyfe. And by the reason of this good prouision of this maistres bee, sayde I, all the tother beare so good loue and af­fection vnto her, that whan so euer she goth out of the hyue / there wyll none tarye be­hynde, but all wayte vpon her.

Than my wyfe answered me. I do great lye maruayle / whether suche thynges, as ye saye the maistres bee dothe, do not be­longe moche more to you than to me. For my kepyng and departing within, were [Page] but a littell worthe, excepte ye dyd your diligence, that somwhat myght be brought in. And my bryngynge in, sayde I, shulde auayle but a littell, excepte there were one / that kepte & saued that, that I brought in.

Do ye not se, sayde I, howe euery man hath great pite of them, the which, they say, that their punisshement is to poure water in to tubbes full of hooles, tyll they be full. And they pite them for nothinge els, but by cause they seme to labour in vayne. By my fayth, said my wyfe, they be very miserable in dede, the which do so. There be other thynges, that belonge to you to take hede of, the whiche muste nedes be very pleasant vnto you / as whan ye haue taken one in to your seruice, that can nother spynne nor carde / if ye teache her to do it, hit shall be twyse so moche more worthe vnto you. And if ye haue a maide, the whiche is outher negligent, or is not trewe of her handes, or that can not wayte, if ye make her diligent, trustye, and a good seruant, all shall be to your great profette. And agayne, whan ye se your seruantes good and sobre felowes, and profitable for our house / ye muste do them good / and shewe them some gentilnes. But if there be any of thē knauisshe or fro­warde, [Page 27] ye muste punisshe them. And this agayne shulde be moste pleasant of all, if ye coude make your selfe better than I, and make me as it were your seruant. And ye nede not fere leste in proces of tyme, whan ye come to age, ye be lesse set by: but be ye sure of this, if ye be diligent, louynge, and tendable to me, our children, and housholde, the elder that ye waxe / the more honorable and better estemed shal ye be. For it is not the beautifulnes, and goodlye shappe, but the very vertue and goodnes that men re­garde, and fauour.

I remembre good Socrates, that my firste cōmunication with her, was after this maner. And dyd ye perceiue, good Ischomachus, saide I, that by the reason of this, she was any thynge moued to be more dili­gent? Yes verily, saide Ischomachus, And I sawe her vpon a time sore an angerd with her selfe, and greatly a shamed / that whan I asked her a thynge, that I hadde broughte home, she coude not fette hit me. And whan I sawe that hit greued her very sore / I said vnto her. Take neuer the more thoughte for the matter, if ye can not gyue me that that I aske you. For it is a token of pouerte in very dede, whan a man lacketh [Page] a thynge / that he can not haue. But this nede may be suffered a great deale better / whan a man sekethe a thynge and can not fynde it / than if at the begynnynge he dothe not seke for it / knowyng that he hath it not. But as for this ye be not to be blamed, saide I, but I my selfe / seinge I haue not apoyn­ted you a place, where to leye euery thynge that ye myghte knowe, where ye shulde set hit, and where to fette hit agayne.

The praise and profyt of order.There is nothynge, good swete wyfe, so profitable and so goodlye amonge men, as is an order in euery thynge.

In playes and enterludes, where a great company of men is assembled to playe their partes, if they shulde rasshely do and saye / what so euer felle in to theyr braynes, hit wolde be but a trouble and a busynes / and no pleasure to beholde them. But whan they do and speake euerye thynge in order / the audience hath a verye greatte pleasure bothe to beholde them, ye and also to here them.

And like wise an armie of men swete wife, said I, that is out of order, and sette out of good arraye / is a very great confusion, in daunger to be lightlye ouer come of theyr enmies, and a verye pitous and miserable [Page 28] sighte to their frendes, as whan there is together in a plumpe, asses, fotemen, cartes / baggage / and men of armes. And howe shulde they go forwarde, whan they do let one an other? He that gothe letteth hym that runnethe, he that rounneth distourbeth hym, that standeth styll, the carte letteth the mā of armes, the asse the carte / the baggage the fote man. And if they shulde come to the pointe / that they must fighte / how coude they fight beinge in that taking? For whā they be faine, by the reason of their il order, to flee their owne company, that letteth thē, howe coude they, thus fleinge, ouer come them, that set vpon them in good order of batayle, & wel weaponed? But the armie, that is wel ordred and kept in good array / is a very pleasaunt sighte to theyr frendes / and greuous to their enmies. What frende is there, but that he wyll haue a very great plesure to se the foote men marche forward in good order and arraye? What is that man, but he wyll maruayle whan he behol­deth a greatte nombre of men of armes ry­dynge in good arraye and order? And what enmie wyll not be aferde, whan he se­eth morispikes, bylles / men of armes / crosse bowes, and also archers, the whiche folowe [Page] their capitaynes in good arraye and order of bataile? And also whan they marche forwarde in good array, if they be neuer so many thousādes, yet they walke as pesibly as though there were but one man alone.

And what maketh a galey / wel furnisshed with men, feareful to the enmies, and plea­saunt to beholde vnto frendes, but that hit goth so swyftly? And what maketh them that be in it / that they do not trouble one an other / but that they do sytte in order / keke & make signes in order, lye downe in order, ryse in order, drawe the oores in order? And as for confusion & misorder / me thyn­keth hit is lyke / as if a man of the countree shuld put together on a heape, otes, wheate, barlye, and pease / and whan he had nede to occupie any of them, he shulde be fayne to trie hit out, and put hit by hit selfe agayne. Wherfore swete wyfe / ye shall lyghtlye e­schewe suche confusion, if ye putte to your good wyl to set in good order that that we haue, and take to you that that ye haue nede of / and spare not: and gyue to me that that I call for gratiously. And let vs seke out and prepare a hansome place to sette euery thynge in / accordynge as euery thinge re­quireth. And whan we haue sette it there / [Page 29] let vs shewe hit the seruante, that she maye fetche hit, and laye hit vppe there agayne. And thus we shall knowe / what we haue saued, & what we haue loste. For the place hit selfe shall lacke that that it shulde haue. And the sight wyl serche out that that hath nede of helpe / and make vs to knowe anone where liethe euery thynge, so that we shall not be to seke, whan we haue nede of hit.

I remembre good Socrates, that vpon a tyme I wente a bourde a shyppe of Phe­nicia, where I behelde the goodlyest order and the mooste perfecte that euer I sawe.The order of a shyp. I consydered howe great abundance of im­plimentes was in that smalle vessell. There were many oores, and many other thynges made of wodde: with the whiche they brynge the shyppe in to, and out of the hauen. What a sorte of shrowdes, halsers, cables, lines, and other takeling was there? With howe many ingins of warre bothe to defende it selfe, and to greue an enmie, was hit armed? What a sighte of armoure and weapons for the men / cary they about with them. More ouer, they carye with them moche vitayle and other necessaries / that men vse at home in their houses. Besyde al this, hit shas laded, with suche stouffe and [Page] goodes, as the shyppe maister gettethe by the cariage therof. And all this geare that I speake of, was stowed in so littell a rowme, that a farre greatter place wolde not haue receyued it / if hit shulde haue bene remoued. And I marked howe euerye thynge was so well sette in good order / that no one thynge dyd lette an other, nor hadde no nede to be longe soughte fore: Nor were not so scatered, and so yll com­pacte, that a man shulde tarye longe for hit / whan he shulde occupie hit quickelye. And he that wayted vpon the Patrone of the shyppe / that is to saye, he that standethe in the fore parte of the shyppe, I perceyued, that he hadde euerye place so well in his mynde, that thoughe he were not there / he wolde telle you redilye, where euerye thynge laye, none other wyse than he that is lerned, can telle howe many letters go to this worde, Socrates, and in what place euery letter is sette. More ouer, I sawe hym, whan he was serchynge and castynge in his mynde, howe many thynges a shyppe hath nede of: Than I maruay­lynge wheron he mused and studied, asked hym, what he meaned. I considre and cast afore hande good man, quod he, if any thing [Page 30] shulde chaunce / howe and in what redynes euery thynge lyeth in the shyppe / whether any thynge lieth out of his place, or if euery thynge be not trymmed to the purpose. For hit is no tyme, whan god sendeth vs a storme on the see / to be sekyng that that we nede of / nor to brynge forth that that is not hansome & well trymmed. For god thret­neth & punissheth them that boydel & negli­gent. And we may be glad, if he do not de­stroy vs, whā we do our deutie. And if he saueth them / that vse great labour and di­ligence, they oughte to thanke hym greatly. Wherfore whan I perceyued and sawe that goodly and perfecte order, I saide vnto my wyfe, that hit shulde be great slouthe and negligence vnto vs, if they, whiche be but in littell shyppes and smalle vessels, fynde feete places to stowe euery thynge in, that they carye with them, And thoughe they be sore shaken and troubled / and continu­allye in great feare, yet they kepe a good order, And we that haue so goodly places, and a house standynge stedfastlye on the lande, coude not fynde places mete and cō ­uenient for to sette euery thynge in, howe moche oughte we to be blamed of lewdnes and smalle wysedome?

[Page]We haue sufficiently spoken howe profi­table it is to sette all the implimentes of the house in good order, and to sette euery thing in suche a redines / in places mete therfore, that hit may be easye to fynde and come by whan nede requireth. But howe goodly a thynge is it to se sewtis of all a mannes ap­parel, lienge by it selfe, keuerlettes, & coun­terpoyntes by them selfes, shetes, towels, and al naprye ware by them selfes / pottes, pannes, caudrous, and other garnitures of the ketchyn by them selfe, al that longeth to the table by it selfe / and so lyke wyse of all other thinges, that longe to an house, wher at he that is vnwyse, and knoweth not good order wyll laugh. And whether it be so or not my swete wife, we may lightly proue without great cost / and with small labour. And ye muste not trouble your selfe / as though it were an harde thyng to fynde one, that coude lerne the places / and remembre where to sette euery thing. For we knowe well, that in the citie there is a thousande tymes more wave than we haue: but ye [...] what so euer seruant ye wyll commande to go and bye you somwhat / in the market / he wyll not stande styl, as though he coude not tel what to do, but by the reason that he re­membreth, [Page 31] where he hath sene of it / he goth thither streighte waye, and fetcheth hit. And surely ther is none other cause of this / said I / but that there is a place determined, where one shall haue hit. But if one se­keth a man / the whiche seketh hym to / may fortune he wyll often tymes be soner werye than he can fynde hym. And of this lyke wyse there is none other cause, but that ther is no place appointed, where the tone shulde tary for the tother. As for settyng in or­der of the householde stouffe / and of the vse of hit, I remembre I spake vnto her after this maner. And howe thoughte ye by your wyfe good Ischomachus, sayde I? Whether dyd she obeye you in that thynge / that ye taught her so busily? Isch. What shuld I say / but that she promised to applie her mynde vnto it. And me thought verily by her countinaunce / she was very gladde / that where afore she was in a great doubte and perplexitie / she had founde a good way in it, and besoughte me, that I wolde make an order of euery thing, as I had saide vnto her as soone as was possible. And what order did you shewe hir good Ischomachus said I? Ischo. What order shuld I shewe her but this? Fyrste me thought best to [Page] shewe her, what a house properly was or­deyned fore. For hit is not ordeyned to be gorgiouslye peynted with diuers faire pic­tures, but it is builded for this purpose & cō sideration, that it shulde be a ꝓfitable vessel for those thīges, that shuld be in it. Wher­fore in a maner it byddeth the dwellers, to lay vp euery thyng, where it is most mete to put it. The inner priuey chābre, bicause it standeth strongest of all / loketh for to haue the iewels, plate, and all suche thynges as be moste precious. The drye places loke for the wheate, The colde for the wyne. And bryght places do desyre suche workes and thynges, as require lightsomnes. More ouer, I shewed her howe parlers & dynyng places, wel trymmed & dressed, for men to eate & drynke in, in sommer shuld be colde, & in winter hotte. And I shewed her howe al the situation of the house was very moche southward, wherby it may be clerely vnderstāde, that in winter the sonne lighteth welfauourdly vpon it, and in somer there is goodly shadowe in it. Further, I shewed her the nourcerie & the womens lodgynge, diuided from the mens lodgynge, left there came out any thyng amisse, & our seruantes shulde get them children without our con­sentement. [Page 32] For they that be good / if they haue children throughe our permission, they woll loue vs the better. And they that be noughte, if they come ones to couple with a womā, they wil finde the more wayes / & the better shyfte to fulfyl their vngratiousnes. And after we had spoken thus, saide he, we wente and deuided the household stouffe, by sewtes and sortes after this maner. First we dyd put to gether all maner of thynges longynge to sacrifices. Nexte to that the good wyues apparell, both for holy dayes and workynge dayes, and afterwarde the good mannes apparayle bothe for the holy dayes, & also for warre, Clothes for mens chambres, and for the nourcerie, mennes showes, and womens showes, Than we appoynted out the instrumentes, that belonge to spinning & cardyng, and suche as perteine to the bake house, to the kechin, to the bathe, & to the boulting house. We dyd seperate a sonder those thinges, that shuld be occupied alwaye, from those, that be occupied but at diner & souper. And we dyd seperate that that we shulde spende in a monthes space / and that that was appoynted to serue vs a twelue monthe. For so it is the better kno­wē, in what maner it is brought to an ende. [Page] And after we had seperated all the house­holde stouffe in sewtis and sortis / we dyd set euery thynge in a place conuenient.

Afterwarde all the instrumentes that our seruātes must occupie dayly, as for the bake house, for the ketchyn / for spynnynge and cardyng, and other lyke, we dyd shewe them the place, wher they shuld put them agayne, and than deliuered them / & bade them kepe them safe. And as for suche thynges, as shulde be occupied but seldome, or vpō holy dayes, or whan there came any straungers vnto vs, or at certayne other tymes, in cer­tayne busynesse, we deliuered them vnto a woman, that we made the keper of our store house / and shewed her the place / where they shulde be sette. And whan we had made a rekenynge vnto her of all, and also written euery thynge, we bade her, that she shulde deliuer them forth as tyme and nede requi­red, and that she shulde remembre well to whom she deliuered any thynge, And whan she receyued it agayne / that she shulde lay it vppe / where she had hit before. And to be keper of our store house, we appoynted her, that semed vnto vs moste sobre and tempe­rate in eatynge, drinkyng / and slepyng, and that she coude very wel refrayne the cōpany [Page 33] of men: and that semed also to haue a very good remembrance / and that wold beware to be founde in a faute throughe her negli­gence / lest she shulde displease vs with hit / and seke the meane to do that that shulde please vs / that she myghte be praysed and rewarded for hit. More ouer we taughte her to haue a good wyll towarde vs, and to loue vs, For bicause that whan there was any thynge happened, that made vs ioyfull and gladde, we made her partaker of hit / and if we were sorowfull and heuy for any matter / we called her, and shewed her the same. Furthermore we taught her to sette her good wyll and her good mynde to en­crease our house, teachyng her the way and the maner howe. And if any thynge for­tuned well to vs / we gaue her parte of it. Also we taughte her to be iuste and trewe in her busynes, and to esteme and set more by them, that were good and rightfull, than by them that were false and vntrewe: And we shewed her howe they lyued in more welthe & more libertie, than they that were false and vntrustye. And so thus we dyd sette her in the rowme. And at the laste good Socrates, sayde he, I sayde vnto my wyfe / that all this shulde auayle nothynge / [Page] except she toke diligēt hede / that euery thīg might remaine styl in good order. I taught her also howe in cōmon welthes, & in good cites / that were wel ruled & ordred, it was not inough for the citezins and dwellers, to haue good laws made vnto thē, except that they beside chose men to haue the ouersighte of the same lawes, the whose duetie shuld be to se, that they, the which do wel, and accor­ding to the lawe, may be preysed, & he that doth the cōtrary, to be punisshed. And so I bad my wife, that she shuld thīke her selfe to be, as if it were the ouerseer of the lawes within our house: and that she shulde, whan she thought best,A good wiues duite. ouerse the stuffe, vessell / & implementes of our house / none other wyse thā the capitaine of a garison ouerseeth and proueth the sondiours, how euery thing stā ­deth: or like wise as the Senate & the coun­sell of Athenes ouerseeth & maketh a proffe both of the men of armes, and also of theyr horses. And that she shulde preise & reward hym, that were worthy, to her power / as if she were a quene, And blame, ye and pu­nisshe hym, that doth deserue it. Beside all this I taught her, that she shulde not be displeased, if I did put her to more busines, & charged her with mo thinges to be done in [Page 34] the house, than any seruant I had, shewinge her, that prentis & couenāt seruātes haue no more of their maisters goodes, but as moch as they deliuer them, to do theyr maysters seruice with all, or to bestowe it in their be­halfe, or to kepe it for them: & they may oc­cupie none of hit to theyr owne vse, excepte their maisters do giue it them. But he that is the maister / he hath all, & may vse euery thynge at his owne pleasure, wherfore he that hath moste profit by it, if his goodes be safe, hath moste losse, if they be loste or peri­shed: I shewed her, it were reason he shulde be moste diligent, & take beste hede about it. Than saide I. Good Ischomachus, whan your wife harde this, howe did she take it? what will ye haue any more of it good So­crates / but that she said: I knew her not wel if I thought it did greue her, that I shulde teache her to take hede to her goodes & sub­staūce. For it shuld haue ben more greuous vnto me a great dele, said she, if ye had bade me to take no hede to my goodes / than to bydde me to be dilygent aboute that that is myn owne. For me thinketh, that like wyse, as it is naturally giuen to a good woman, rather to be dylygent aboute her owne chyldren than not to care for them, [Page] Lyke wyse it is more pleasure for an honest woman to take hede to her owne goodes, than to set noughte by them.

And whan I harde, sayde Socrates, that his wife gaue him suche an answere, I said: By my faythe Ischomachus, ye tell me of a iolye and a manlye stomacke of a woman. Ye, sayde he, ye shall here me telle you other thynges yet, that wyl well shewe her good lustye harte, that whan she had harde but ones speake of it, streighte way she dyd after me in it. So. I pray you tel me that, for surelye I haue more pleasure a greatte deale, to lerne the vertue of a woman aliue, than if Zensis the excellent peynter shulde shewe me the picture & portrature of a faire woman. Than sayde Ischomachus, whan I had sene her vpon a tyme / that she hadde peynted her face with a certayne oyntment, that she myghte seme whitter than she was, and with an other oyntment, that she myght seme redder than she was in very dede, and that she had a peyre of highe showes on her feete, to make her seme taller woman than she was, I sayd vnto her: Tell me, good wyfe, whether wolde ye iuge me worthyer to be beloued, if our goodes and substaunce nowe beinge common one to an other, if I [Page 35] shulde shewe you that that I haue in verye dede, and make nother more of hit, nor no lesse than it is in very dede / and kept nothīg priuey from you: or if I wente aboute to deceyue you, sayinge I hadde more than I haue, and shewyng you false money, cheines of brasse in stede of golde, countrefete pre­cious stones, redde in the stede of scarlette / false purpull in the stede of pure and good? Than she answered streighte waye. God forbid ye shuld be suche one: For if ye were suche one, I coude not fynde in myn harte to loue you. I wyl tel you wyfe, We be come to gether to thintent to haue pleasure of the body one of an other, at the lest men say so: Whether than, seinge I muste gyue you my body to vse with you, were I better to be beloued after your iugement, if I studied and wente aboute to make my bodye seme the lustier, the stronger, the better coloured / the better complectioned / and shulde noynte my face with certayne oyntmētes, and so shewe me vnto you, and lie with you / and gyue you these oyntementes to se and to handle in the stede of my colour and of myne owne face? Forsoth, sayd she, I shulde neuer haue more pleasure in handlynge any oyntement in the stede of your face / nor delite more in thynge [Page] counterfeted, than in your very eies & your naturall face. Thynke lyke wyse by me good wyfe, saide Ischomachus, that I haue no more pleasure in oyntmētes, than I haue in your owne natural body and face. And like wise as god hath made horses to haue pleasure with maares, bulles with kyne, rammes with ewes, so lyke wyse men do thinke that body most plesant, that is pure. And as for suche wyles and deceites / they may parauenture begyle strangers, so that they shal neuer be spied, but they that be daily cōuersant to gether, they shal lightly perceiue, if the tone go aboute to deceiue the to­ther. For they wyll be spied, either whan they rise out of their bed, before they make them redye, or whan they sweate, or whan they wepe, or whan they wasshe and bathe them. So. And I prey you, said I, what an answere made she to it. Isch. What, said I? by my faith she wente neuer sens about no suche maters, but shewed her selfe alway pure with as good comelines as myght be. And she asked me, whether I coude giue hir any counsayle howe she shulde be fayrer in dede, & not only appere so. And thā I gaue her coūseyle, that she shuld not sit styl like a slaue or a bounde woman, but go about the [Page 36] house like a maistres, & se howe the workes of the house wēte forwarde: some tymes to the weauing womē, both to teche them that she can do better than they, & also to marke who dothe better or worse. some tymes to loke vpō her that baketh the bread. some times to loke vpon her, that kepeth the store house, to se her set vp and met that that she weaueth. some times to bestyr her selfe lo­king if eueri thing be set vp in his place. For I rekened, that this shulde be bothe a waye to take hede to the house, & also shuld serue for a good walke. Also I sayde it were a good exercise to washe, to boulte, to bake, to shake keuerlettes, hāgynges, tappessary ware, & to set thē vp againe in their places. For I said, if she did sōwhat to exercise her selfe / she shulde haue the more luste to her meate, she shuld be the more helthie, & gette better fauoured colour in very dede. And also the sight of the maistres being more clen­lier & far better apparailed, & settinge her hāde to worke, & in a maner striuīg with her seruantes who shalle do moste, is a great cōforte vnto them, that be vnder her, specially whā it lieth in them, either to do her pleaser in doing of their worke with a good wil, or to be cōpelled to do it aginst thier willes. [Page] But they that alwaye do stande stylle lyke quenes in theyr maiestie / they wyll be onely iuged of those women that be triumphantly arrayde, the whiche do deceyue them.

And nowe, sayde he, good Socrates be ye sure, she liueth euen as I haue taughte her, and as I tell you.

So. Than saide I. Good Ischomachus, me thinketh ye haue sufficiently spoken tou­chynge the behauour of your wyfe, and of you, to the great prayse of you bothe: but nowe I pray you, tell me your owne dedes, that bothe ye may reioyce in tellynge suche thynges / the whiche do gette you so good a name. And whan I haue harde and lerned the workes and dedes of a good honest mā, I may gyue you suche thākis as ye deserue, and accordynge to my power. By my faythe, sayde Ischomachus, I wyll be glad to tell you all, what so euer I do, to thin­tent ye may correcte me, if ye thynke I do not wel in some thynge. Socra. Ye but tell me, howe coude I correcte you, seinge that ye be come to this poynte to be a good honeste man, specially whan I am the man, that is taken for a trifler, that occupieth him selfe in nothynge, but in measurynge of the aier: And that that is a very sore rebuke / [Page 37] and a token of most great foly, I am called a poure man. And I assure you,The name of pouerte. that name wolde haue troubled me very sore / if I had not mette the tother daye by chaunce one Nicias hors, & sene moche people that came after to beholde him, and harde very moche talkyng of hym. And in very dede I came to the horsekeper and asked hym, whether the horse had moche money or not. And he loked vpon me as though I had ben madde to aske hym suche a pyuisshe question / and said: Howe shuld a horse haue any money? And so I turned me euen backe agayn, whā I harde / it was laufull for a poure horse to be good, if he had a good free harte and sto­macke with hym. And therfore I preye you, seinge it is lyke wise lauful for a poure man to be good, that ye wyll telle me your maner of lyuynge to the vttermoste poynte, to thentent that whan ye haue tolde me, I may endeuoir my selfe to lerne hit: & from this day forward to begynne to folowe you and do after you. For that may be called a very good daye, on the whiche a man be­gynneth to be good and vertuous. I know well ye ieste with me good Socrates, sayde Ischomachus: but yet I wyll tell you as farforthe as I can, the holle course of my [Page] life, the whiche I purpose to folowe stylle tyll the last day of my lyfe.

After that I had wel perceyued / that ex­cept a man knoweth what is to be done, and wyll set and applie his mynde and diligēce to performe the same, god granteth no man to do well. And vnto them, that be bothe wyse and diligent, god sendeth welthe and good fortune. Wherfore firste of all I be­ganne to honour and worshyp god / and to calle vpon hym with my prayers / that he wold vouchesafe to sende me the grace, that I might haue my helthe, strength of body / honour in my citie, good wyl of my frendes, to returne home againe safe from warfare / with the encreace of my riches and goodes. Socra. And whan I harde that / I sayde: And care ye so moche to waxe riche, seinge that whan ye be riche, ye haue the more trouble, in studienge howe to order and kepe your goodes? Yes mary, saide Ischoma­chus, I haue no smalle care of that that ye aske me. For me thynketh it is great pleasure bothe to worshyp god honorably, and to helpe my frendes / if they be in nede, and to se that the citie be not depriued of the or­namētes of riches, as moche as lieth in me. Socra. By my fayth that that ye say good [Page 38] Ischomachus, is good and also very hono­rable / & longynge to a man of great power & substance. Ischo. It must nedes be thus. For there be some men, the whiche can not lyue, but they muste be holpen of other men. And there be many agayne / that reken hit sufficient, if they can gette that / that is ne­cessarie for them. But those that wyll not onely order and gyde theyr houses / but also haue so great abundance, that they do bothe honour to the citie / and also helpe and ease theyr frendes: why shuld not they be called and taken for men of profounde wisedome, of great power, and of stoute stomacke? Socra. Surely there be many of vs, sayde I, that may wel praise suche maner of men. But for goddis sake telle me euen from the place, where ye beganne, howe ye go aboute to mainteine your helth, and also the strēgth of your body / howe it may be laufull to re­tourne honorably home agayne safe fro the warre. For as touching the encreasinge of goodes, we shal here of it afterwarde suffi­ciently. But me thinketh, saide Ischo, that these thīges be linked to gether, & come one after an other. For when a man hath meate & drinke sufficiently, if he do labour wel, he shal haue his helth the better and the lōger. [Page] And he that is well exercised in warre, he shall returne home safe agayne / and with more honour. And he that is diligent, and doth not coker hym selfe, nor gyue him selfe to slouthe and idelnes / he is the more likely to encreace his house. So. Forsothe good Ischomachus, I graunte you all this euen hitherto, where ye say, that he that labou­reth, taketh peyne, vseth diligence, and ex­erciseth him selfe, cometh the rather to goo­des. But what labour ye vse to meinteine a good complection, and to get you strength, and howe also ye exercise your selfe for the warre / and howe ye studie to get so moche substance and goodes / that ye maye bothe helpe your frendes / and make the citie more honorable and stronger by it, that wolde I very fayne here. Verily good Socrates saide Ischomachus, I ryse in the mornynge out of my bedde so yerly, that if I wol speke with any man, I shall be sure to fynde hym yet within. And if I haue any thynge ado in the citie, I go aboute it, and take hit for a walke. And if I haue no matter of great importance to do within the citie, my page bryngethe my horse afore in to the feldes, and so I take the way to my grounde for a walke, better parauenture than if I dyd [Page 39] walke in the galeries and walkynge places of the cite. And whā I come to my groūd, if my tenantes be eyther settynge of trees, or tyllynge or renewynge the grounde / or sowyng, or carienge in the frute, I beholde howe euery thynge is done, and caste in my mynde, howe I myghte do hit better. And afterwarde for the moste parte, I get me a horsebacke and ryde as nere as I can, as though I were in warre constrayned to do the same, wherfore I do nat spare nother croked wayes, nor no shrowde goinges vp, no ditches / waters / hedges / nor trenches / takynge hede for all that as nere as can be possible, that in this doinge, I do not maime my horse. And whan I haue thus done, the page leadeth the horse trottynge home againe, and carieth home with hym in to the citie, out of the countre that that we haue nede of. And so than I get me home again, some tymes walking, and some tymes run­nynge. Than I wasshe my handes, and so go to diner good Socrates, the whiche is ordeyned betwene bothe, so that I abyde al the day nother voyde nor yet to full. So. By my trouth good Ischomachꝰ, ye do these thynges wonders pleasantly. For in dede to vse & occupie at ones al maner of thīges, [Page] that be ordeined for helthe, for strength, for exercise of warre / for study and conueiance howe to get goodes / and all in one tyme, me thinketh a maruailous thynge. For ye do shewe euident tokens, that ye applie your minde wel & truly to al this. For we se you cōmonly, thanked be god / for the most parte helthful, stronge and lusty. More ouer we know, that ye be called one of the best horse men, and one of the richest men of the citie. Ischo. And though I thus do, as ye haue hard, yet can not I eschewe detraction: ye thoughte parauenture that I wolde haue sayde, I am therfore called a good honeste man. So. And forsothe so I was aboute to say good Ischomachꝰ, But this I thought first to enquere of you, whether ye do studie and set your mynde, howe to answere these detractours / and speake in a cause, whether it be your owne or an other mans, or to iuge it, if nede be. Ischo. Thinke yon that I do not sufficiently my parte in this matter / if I thīke by my good dedes to defēde my selfe, and do no wronge / and as moche as I may helpe and do pleasure to many men? And more ouer, thinke ye that it is not well done to accuse suche men, that do wronge both to priuate men, and also to the citie / and that [Page 40] wyll do no man good? So. But yet if ye set your mynde to suche thynges / I praye you shewe it me? Ischo. Forsoth I neuer stint, but am alway exercising my selfe in retoricke & eloquence. For whan I here one of my seruantes compleyne on an other / or answere in his owne cause, I seke to knowe the trouthe. Agayne / I either blame some man to my frendes, or els praise him, or els I go aboute to brynge at one some men of min acqueintance, that be at variāce, endeuorynge my selfe to shewe them / howe hit is more for their profette to be frendes / than yl wyllers and enmies. And before the high rulers I vse both to commēde and defende hym, that is oppressed by wronge and iniurie / and before the lordes of the cost seile I accuse hym, that I se promoted vn­worthily, & I preise that that is done by coū saile & deliberation, & the contrary I discō ­mende. But I am nowe broughte to this point, that either it behoueth me to suffre or to punishe. So. Of whom I prey the Isch. For that do not I yet knowe.Stryffe with a wyfe. Isch Mary of my wyfe. So. But in what maner do ye stryue in your quarel? Isch. Whan she happeth to say trouth, it is very gentylly done, But whan she lieth / & erreth in her wordes, [Page] forsoth Socrates, I can not refourme her. So. May chance that, that is false, ye can not make hit trewe. But parauenture ye wold begone Ischmachus, and I do let you. Truly I wolde be lothe to tarye you, if hit please you to go hēce. Ischo. No in good fayth, good Socrates, I wyl not go hence tyl the courte breake vp. Socra. By my faythe, ye be righte circumspecte and take good hede, that ye lose not that honorable name, to be called a good honeste man. For where parauēture ye haue many great businessis and thinges to take hede to, that require great diligence, yet bicause ye pro­mysed those strāgers to tary for them here, ye wyll not deceiue them. Ischo. As for those my businesses that ye speake of So­crates, I haue prouided for thē wel inough. For I haue in the feldes my baillies of husbandrye, and my deputies. So. But sine we be fall in this communication, I praye you Ischomachus tel me / whan ye haue nede of a good bayllie, do ye inquere, whether there be any that can do it well, and so finde the meane to haue hym: lyke wyse as whā ye haue nede of a carpenter, whan ye knowe where is one / that can good skylle therof / ye wil desire to haue hym, or els do ye make [Page 41] your bayllies and deputies your selfe, and teache them to do hit? By my fayth,How to pr [...] paire a ba [...] lye of hus­bandrye. I in­deuour me to teache and instructe them my selfe. For he that shulde be sufficient to do those thynges for me in myne absence, that he is put to / what nedethe he to knowe any thynge, but that that I do my selfe. For if I be sufficient to sette men a worke, and commaunde them what they shall do, I trow I am able to teache an other man that that I can do my selfe. Socra. Than he that is a baylly of husbandry must owe you good wyl and fauour, and also to al yours, if he beinge present, shal be sufficient in your absence. For without loue and good wyl, what good can a bayllye do, if he be neuer so experte and connynge? By my faythe, sayd Ischomacus, neuer a whyt: but as for me / the fyrste thynge that euer I do / I go aboute to teache hym to loue me and myn, and to loue my goodes. And I praye you for goddis sake tell me / howe do ye teache hym to loue you and yours, who so euer he be that ye do this benifitte vnto? By my fayth, sayd he, by gentyl & liberall dealing whan god sendeth me plenty of any maner thinge. Socra. This ye meane I trowe, that they, the whiche be eased and holpe by [Page] your goodes or money / do loue you and de­syre that ye may do well. Surely good Socrates / sayde he / that is the beste instru­ment that can be to allure and gette a mans good wyll withall. Socra. And whan he heareth you good wyll good Ischomachus, is he therfore sufficient to be a bayllye? For we may se that al mē loue them selfes / and yet through slonggisshenes they be ne­gligent to do those thynges, the whiche for the moste parte they coueyte right moche to haue, as goodes, Ischo. Ye but whan I wol make suche men as loue me my baillies and ouerseers of my businesses, I instructe and monisshe them before howe they shulde ouerse euery thynge diligently. Socra. Can ye brynge that to passe? Forsothe me thynketh it is vnlikely, that any man coude be taught to gyde an other mans busines a­ryght. Ischo. In very dede it is impossible good Socrates to instructe and teache eue­ry man diligently to do it. Socra. And who be they that ye thinke mete to be taught and instructed? For that I desyre very greatly to knowe. Ischo. Fyrste of all they that can not refraine them selfes from dronken­nes ar excluded from this care. For drōkē ­nes bringeth in with hit forgetfullnes of al [Page 42] maner of thynges, that a man shulde do. Socra. Whether than is it impossible, but onely in them, that can not refrayne them from dronkennes, to make them diligent, or be there any other beside? Yes mary sayde Ischomachus and they also that can not refrayne them selfe from slepe. Socra. Be there any mo besyde those? Methyn­keth, sayde Ischomachus, that they, the whiche do sette theyr mynde sore to the pleasure of the flesshe / that it is imposible to teache them to haue more mynde to any thynge than to that. for they can fynde no­ther hope nor study more pleasant to them then of theyr louers. And whan they haue any thynge to do, it is harde to ima­gyne a sorer punisshement than that is to them to be kept from them they be in loue with. Therfore I let suche maner of men go nor neuer go about to teach them to be more diligēt. So. Ye but they, that do set theyr mynde sore to lucre, be not they apte to be taught that diligence / the whiche shulde be vsed and occupyed in your grounde? Ischomachus. Yes marye they / there can none be sooner brought to this dyli­gēce. For ye nede no more but only to shew them, that dylygence is verye profytable. [Page] wherfore if I chance to haue suche one, I cōmende him moche. So. And as for other men, the whiche do refrain them from suche thinges as ye do commande / and haue a metely good mynde towarde lucre / howe do ye teache them to be as diligent as ye wold haue them? Ischo. Mary very well good Socrates. For whan I se them diligent, I do bothe preyse and rewarde them. And agayne whan I se them negligent and reche lesse, I both do and say al that euer I can to anger and vexe them with. So. Ye but Is­chomachus, sauinge your tale, that is of thē that be al redy instructed to be diligent: tell me this, touchinge the instruction of them, whether it be possible for a man, that is na­turally negligent / to make other diligent? Isch. No by my fayth / no more than he that hath no skyl in musike can make other men musitians. For hit is harde for a scholer to lerne that thynge well, that his maister teacheth yll. And it is harde for a seruant to vse any dilygence, whan his mayster gy­ueth hym example of negligence.Diligente maysters make good seruantes. And shortely to speake and in generall / I do nat remembre, that euer I hard that any yll maister had any good seruauntes. Mary this haue I sene, that a good diligēt maister [Page 43] by chastisynge of dulheded seruantes / hath lightly instructed them. But he that wyll go aboute to make other diligente in theyr worke, he moste specially ought to be a pro­uident and a ware man, and ouer se and marke their workes. And whan there is any thinge wel and diligently done, he must cunne hym great thanke that dyd it / and he muste not stycke to punisshe hym sharpelye, accordyng as he deserueth, that is negligēt in his busines. And forsoth me thinketh to this purpose hit is a ryghte goodlye an­swere / that the Persian made, For whan the kyng of Perse asked hym / rydyng vpon a ryght faire horse, what thynge dyd sonest make an horse fat, he said his maisters eies.

Some thynke lyke wyse good Socrates, by all other thynges, that the maisters eie moste speciallye maketh them to be in farre better plite. So. But whan ye haue tolde and shewed hym very well & with great in­stāce / that he must take hede to suche thīges as ye wyll haue hym, and that he is verye diligent / is he than mete to be your baillye or stewarde, or els muste he lerne somwhat besyde to make hym fitte for that purpose? Ischo. No iwis man. For it behoueth him yet to lerne, what he must do, and whan, and [Page] howe he shall order euery thyng. For els what auaileth a baylye or a stewarde more without this / than a phisition / the whiche nighte and daye / yarly and laie taketh hede to a sicke man / and yet he woteth not what is profitable for the same pacient. So And whan he knoweth what is to be done / shall he nede any thinge els, or shall he than be a perfecte bailye or stewarde? Ischo. Me thinketh / that he shulde lerne also to rule the worke men. So. And do ye teache your bailie or stewarde to be able to rule? I go a­bout it at lefte, sayd Ischomachus. So. And I praye you for goddes sake, howe do ye teche men to haue the science to rule and cō ­mande? Isch. Very easily good Socrates / in so moche, that I thynke ye shall laugh at it / whan ye here it. So. Forsoth good Ischo­machus, sayde I, it is no matter to laugh at / but he deserueth & ought rather to be hygh­ly landed, that hath the wyt to teache that. For he that can teache men how to rule, he can also make them maisters, & he that can make them masters, can make them prince­lyke & able to be kinges. Ischo. Suerly all maner of bestes good Socrates do lerne to obey by the reason of these two thinges, that is to say, whan they do stryue, & wyll not be [Page 44] obedient, they be punished: and whan they do quickely that that a man byddeth them / they be cherished and well intreated. Coltis and yong horses lerne to obey their brekers and tamers: For whan they do obey them, they haue sōwhat done to them for it / that is to theyr pleasure & ease: But whan they wyl not obey, they beate and handell them very sore and roughly for it, vntyll the time they serue the breker at his wyll.

And yonge spaynels lyke wise, the which be worse than men a great dele / for lacke of reson, and for lacke of speache, yet they lerne to ren a bout / to fetche or cary / to go in to the water after the same maner. For whan they obey, they haue somwhat gyuen them, that they haue nede of, and whan they wil not nor care not for it, they be punisshed. But as for men they may be well parswa­ded and brought to obedience, if a man will shewe them, howe it shal be for theyr pro­fitte, if they do obey. Neuerthelesse vnto bonde men and vile persones that way that is vsed and occupyed towarde beastis, wyll verye well induce them for to lerne to obeye. For if ye do somewhat for theyr bealye and make them fare well, ye shall gette verye moche done of them.

[Page]But ioly stomackes and noble natures be most moued and styrred with prayse. For there be some natures, that do desyre as moche laude and preyse, as other do meate and drynke. And whan I haue taught him, that I will make my baillie or my steward / suche thynges, the whiche whan I do them my selfe / me thynketh I shall make men more obedient vnto me, I do ioyne this vn­to hit besyde. For as touchynge hoosen and showes, and other rayment, the whiche I muste gyue my laborers, I make them not a like. For ther be some better and some worse: to thentent that the beste workmen may haue the preeminence to haue the bet­ter, & the worst may be gyuen to the worst. For me thynketh it greueth good seruantes hartes very sore / whan they se that the worke that they haue done, and howe those haue euen as moche as they, that wyll no­ther labour nor take peyne, whan it beho­ueth to do it. Wherfore nother I my selfe wyll not suffre, that they that be worste / and they that be beste shulde be serued all a lyke. And whan I se that my bayllies and deputies dothe gyue the moste and the beste to them that do beste, I do preyse hym for it. But and I se him preferre any man afore [Page 45] other bicause of his flaterynge, or for some other pynishe cause, I do not suffre it so to passe, but I blame and rebuke him greately therfore, and I go aboute to teache him al­so, that that, whiche he doth, is not for his profitte nother. So. And whan he is suf­ficient thus to rule and gyde, good Ischomachus, so that he can make them to obeie him, do ye thynke that baillye perfecte on euery syde, or hath he nede of ony other thynge els? Yes mary / sayde Ischomachus, for it behoueth him to kepe his handes clene from his maysters goodes / and beware that he steale nothinge therof. For if he / that hath the frutes in his handes wolde be so bolde to conuey so moche out of the waye, that that, whiche remayned were not suffi­cient to maynteyne the worke and fynde the labourers, what profytte shulde we haue by his baylishyp, and by his diligence? So. And do you in dede take vpon you to teache them that iustice and rightfulnes? Yes ma­ry, sayde Ischomachus, but I fynde that e­uery man dothe not obeye and folowe this teachinge and instrucion of myn. Neuerthe­les I take here a pece of Dracons lawes, and here a pece af Solons, and so endeuour my selfe to bringe my seruantes to folowe [Page] iustice. For me thinketh that these men haue made many lawes to teche men iustice. For they haue wrytten, that he muste be punys­shed that steleth, and he that robbeth muste be put in prison and put to dethe. wherfore it may be clere sene, that they haue wrytten those thynges to the intent that they, the whiche do get any goodes foule and shame­fully, contrary to reason and equite, shulde haue no vantage nor no profyt by hit. And whan I haue this do / I brynge in besyde some lawes of the kynge of Perse, to make my seruauntes to deale ryghtfully in that that they be put to. For as touchynge Dra­cons and Solons lawes, they do no more but punysshe them that do amysse:Persiens [...]awes. but the kyng of Perses lawes do not only punyshe them that do wronge and vniustly / but also they do them good that be ryghtfull and deale iustly. Wherby it appereth, that many, the whiche be verye couetous / and care not what they do / so that they may winne, when they se that they, the whiche be ryghtfull and good / waxe rycher than they / the whi­che do other men wronge, they continue and prospere well in this that they do no man wronge. And whan I perceyue that any of them, vnto the whiche I haue ben good and [Page 46] shewed pleasure vnto them, wyll not leaue, but go about stylle to do wronge and deale vniustly, than whan I perceyue that he is past al remedy, I put hym out of his roume, and wyl not let hym occupy it no more. But whan I perceyue, that any of them setteth his mynde and courage to be a good / a iuste and a true seruant, and doth it not so moche bycause they thynke to haue some vaun­tage by hit, but for the desire that they haue to please me, and to be preysed of me, though they be bounde men / I vse them as free men / and for theyr ioly free hart, I do not onely promote them in goodes and ry­ches / but also preise and commende them as good and honest men. For me thynketh that and honest man / that is desyrous of honour / doth differre in this poynt from a couetous man, that for preyse and honour wyll take peyne and put hym selfe in ieoperdie / whan it is nedefull: and yet kepe hym selfe cleane from foule lucre. And thus whan ye haue ones engendred and fastned this affection in a man / that he oweth you good wylle / and beareth you good loue and fauour / and that ye haue brought hym to this poynt, that he wyll applie his mynde and diligence to do euen as ye wold your selfe, and beside that, [Page] ye haue gotten hym the science, howe euery worke that is done shalbe moste profitable / and made him also sufficiēt and able to rule, and that he wyl beside this bring and shewe you the frutes of the grounde none other­wyse than ye wolde to your selfe: whether nedeth he any thyng els or not, I wyl speke no more, for me thynketh that suche a man shulde be a verye good and a profytable stewarde and deputie. Socra. But I praye you good Ischomachus, do not leaue be­hynde that parte, whiche we haue so lightly ronne ouer. And what is that, sayd Ischo­machus? Socra. Mary ye sayde, that the greattest poynt of all was to lerne howe e­uery thynge shulde be done, to the ende that profite therby shulde ryse vnto vs, for other wyse ye sayde, that diligence coude auayle nothynge / excepte a man knewe what and howe to do. Ischo. Do ye byd me to teache you the science of husbandry? Forsoth it is it, sayd I, that maketh them ryche / that can wel occupie it / and they that can nat, though they take neuer so moche peyne / they lyue wretchedlye.

Ischo. Nowe than fyrst of al ye shall here howe gentyll a science it is. For seynge it is moste profitable and pleasant to occupye / [Page 47] moste goodlyest, best beloued of god and of men, and besyde that, moste easye to lerne, howe shulde it nat be a gentyll science? For we call all these beast is gentyll / the whiche be goodly, great, and profitable, and be nat fierce but tame amonge men. So. But me thynketh good Ischomacus / that I haue very well perceyued, that where ye sayde, howe a man muste teache a stewarde and a deputie, and that ye taught hym to owe you good loue and good wylle, and lyke wyse / that ye wente about to make hym diligent, able to rule, and also ryghtfull: but where ye sayde, that he, whiche wyll be diligent in dede in husbandry, must lerne what is to be done, howe, and in what season, me thyn­keth we haue ouer passed hit somewhat to quickely and to negligently. Lykewyse as if ye sayde / that he, the whiche wyll write that that a man speaketh, and rede that that is wrytten, muste knowe his letters. For he that dyd here this, hath harde nothyng els, but that he must lerne to knowe his letters. But whan he perceyueth, that he is neuer the nerer to knowe what letters do meane. And nowe lyke wyse I beleue very well, that he, the whiche wyl vse diligence in hus­bandry / must lerne to know wel husbandry, [Page] but though I beleue and knowe that well, yet am I neuer the wyser howe to occupye husbandry. And if I were euen now deter­mined to falle to husbandry, I wold thynke I were lyke a phisition / the whiche gothe about and loketh vpon / seke men, yet can he not tell what is good for them. And ther­fore to thende I be not suche one, teache me the very poynt and caste of husbandry. For sothe good Socrates, sayde he, it is not by this as by other craftes and sciences / that he which lerneth them must be a longe tyme about them / and bestowe moche peyne and labour in them / er he can do any thynge to get his lyuyng by. Husbandry is nothyng so harde to lerne: for ye shall lerne it euen anone lokyng vpon the labourers, and partly by herynge speke of hit / so that if ye wyl ye may teache hit vnto other. And trewely other artificers and craftes men do hyde and kepe priuey to them selfe the best poyn­tes of theyr sciences, the good husbande men, he that setteth trees beste / he wyll haue very great pleasure, if any man be­holde hym, and he that soweth after the same maner. And if ye aske hym of any thynge that is well wrought, I am sure he wyll neuer kepe from you / howe he dyd it. [Page 48] And so good Socrates, husbandry techeth them that be conuersant in it to be of gentyl maners and disposition. Soc. Forsoth this is a good begynnynge, and nowe I haue harde you tell this moche, it is vnpossible to stoppe me from inquerynge of you fur­ther therof. And therfore seynge ye saye it is a thynge so easy to lerne, do the rather shewe hit me. For it is no shame to you to teache that that is easye: but it is rather a great shame to me / if I can it not, specially whan it is so profitable.

And therfore I wyll shewe vnto you first of all sayde Ischo. that that whiche is the diffusest poynte of all husbandry, as they say whiche dispute of it moste exactly in wordes, and in dede occupie it neuer a whit, is nothynge harde at all. For they say,Knowlege of good grounde. that he that wyll be a good husbande man / must fyrste knowe the nature of the grounde. So. In dede they seme to say well: For he that doth not knowe, what the grounde wyl brynge forthe / I trowe he can not knowe nother what sede he shulde sowe / nor what trees is beste to sette. Ischo. And ther­fore a man may knowe by an other man­nes grounde, what hit wyll brynge forthe and what hit wyll not, whanne he seeth [Page] bothe the frutes and also the trees. And whan he knoweth it ones, hit is not for his profitte to stryue agaynste god and nature. For if a man doth eyther sowe or sette that that he hath nede of, he is neuer the nerer to haue that that is necessarie for hym, excepte the grounde do in a maner delyte and take pleasure bothe to brynge it forth and to no­rysshe it. But if he can nat knowe the good­nes and fertilite of the grounde by reason of the idelnes and negligence of them that haue it in hande: he shall often tymes better knowe it by some grounde that is nat farre from it, than of the neighbour that dwelleth by it. And all though the grounde be vntyl­led and vnlaboured, yet it sheweth his owne nature. For that grounde, that bereth good wylde frutes and wyedes, wyll brynge forth, if it be taken hede to and well tylled, other good frutes and herbes as well as them. So that they that be not all of the best sene in husbandry, can well discerne the nature of the grounde. Socra. Forsothe good Ischomachus, I may be bolde to byde by this, that a man nedethe not to absteyne from husbandrye, for feare leest he knowe not the nature of the grounde. For I do remembre / that fisshers, whiche be alweys [Page 49] occupied in the see, the whiche come not to beholde the grounde howe it is, nor walke not fayre and softly, but rūne euen through it, whan they se the frutes on the grounde, they wyll not stycke to shewe theyr opinion of the grounde, whiche is good, and whiche is bad / and prayse this, and disprayse that. And I se they wyll be communynge often tymes with men, that can very good skylle in husbondry, and shewe them very many thynges touchinge a good grounde. Ischo. Where than wyll ye haue me to begyn good Socrates to declare husbandry vnto you, lest I reherse somwhat that ye knowe alre­dy, for I perceyue, ye be right expert ther­in? So. This me thinketh both profitable and a very great pleasure to lerne / and also hit belongeth specially to a philosopher to knowe, howe I myght, if I wolde, by tyl­lynge and laborynge the grounde, haue ve­ry moche plentie of barly, rye, wheate, and other corne Ischo. This I trewe ye know wel inough, that falowynge and styrrynge of the grounde, helpeth very moche to the sowinge? So. Forsoth so I do. Ischo. And what if we shulde begynne to falowe and plowe the grounde in wynter? Soc. That were nought. For than the erthe shulde be [Page] all slymy. Ischo. And what thynke ye in somer? So. Than it wolde be to harde to plowgh it. Ischo. Wel than we must nedes begynne in the springe of the yere. So. Ye mary / for than it is most lykely / that the grounde openneth and spredeth his owne strengthe and vertue aboute, whan it is fa­lowed and tylled in that tyme. Ischo. Yea and beside that good Socrates the yonge wides turned vp so downe at that tyme be as good to the grounde as any dougynge: and they be not yet come to that strength / that the seede of them caste adowne can growe vp agayne. And I trowe ye knowe this well inough, that if the falowinge, and the tyllynge of the grounde shulde be good, the grounde must be clene kepte and dely­uered from wides, and wel fauourdly hea­ted and warmed of the son. So. Me thyn­keth in very dede it shulde be so. Ischo. And do ye thike, that that can be better brought to passe by any other meane / thanne if the groūde be often tymes stirred in the somer? So. I knowe very well, that the wides can neuer better wither away and drye vp, nor the grounde be better heated throughe the heate of the sonne / thanne if the grounde be ploughed and styrred in the middes of som­mer [Page 50] / and in the myddes of the day. And if any man do falowe, or dygge the grounde with his owne hādes, is it not clere inough, that he also muste seperate asonder the wi­des from the grounde, and caste the wides abrode, that they may dry vp, and turne vp so downe and styrre the grounde / that the soorenes and the rawe watrisshenes of hit may be warmed and well dryed vp? Ischo. Than ye se well good Socrates, howe we be both in one opinion touchynge falowinge and styrrynge of the grounde. So. So me thynketh. And touchynge sowinge, haue ye any other knowlege or opinion, but that is the season to sowe, the whiche bothe men of olde antiquite / approuyng it by experience / and all they, that be nowe, takynge hit of them / do iudge it best of al? For whan the somer is ones past, and Septembre cometh in, al men that be in the worlde do loke vpō almighty god, that whan it shalbe his plea­sure to sende some rayne & make the groūde wete and moysty, that they may fal to sow­inge euen as he commandeth it. Soc. And forsothe good Ischomachus all the men in the worlde haue determined by one assente / that they wyl not sowe, whan the grounde is drye. And hit is clere to euery man, that [Page] they take great lossis and damages / that wyll go aboute to sowe afore god byddeth them. Ischo. Than in these thynges al we men do agre. So. For in that that god te­cheth, it foloweth / that euery man agreeth in it: As for a similitude, Euery man thyn­keth best to weare good furred and wel ly­ned gownes in wynter / if he be able, and al so to make good fyre, if he haue wodde. Ischo. Yea but there be many, the whyche do vary in this touchinge sowinge, whether it be beste to sowe in the begynnynge, in the myddes, or at the later ende. Soc. And god dothe not sende euery yere of one lyke temperatnes of wether. For some tymes it is best to sowe in the begynnynge, some ty­mes in the myddes, some tymes at the later ende. Ischo. But what thynke ye best gen­tyll Socrates, whanne so euer a man hath chosen his sowynge tyme / or euer more in this tyme, or nowe in this and nowe in that, whether is it best to sowe moche seede or li­tel? So. Me thynketh best of all good Is­chomachus to distribute the seede, wel, ful, and truly. For I suppose it is a great deale better to take corne inough euer more, than some tymes to moche and sometymes to ly­tel. And in this poynt also good Socrates [Page 51] sayd he, you beinge the lerner do agre with me the techer, and ye haue shewed your opi­nion afore me. So. But what of that sayde I / for in the castynge of the seede there is moche counnynge? Ischo. In any case good Socrates, lette vs loke vpon that. For ye knowe wel, that it must be cast with a mans hande. So. Forsothe I haue sen it done so. Ischo. But some can caste it euen, and some can not. So. well than it lacketh nothynge els but to exercise the hāde, as harpers and luters do / that hit maye folowe the mynde. Isch. It is very wel sayde: But what if the grounde be thynner or grosser? So. what meane you by that? Do ye not take the thinner for the weaker, and the grosser for the stronger? Ischo. That same meane I. So. And this wolde I fayne know of you, whe­ther ye wyl gyue as moche seede to the tone as to the tother, or els whiche of them wyl ye gyue more vnto? Isch. In the wyne that is stronge, me thynketh hit behoueth to put the more water, and the man that is stron­ger must beare the greater burthen, if there be any thinge to be caried, and som men are fedde and nourisshed with sklēder fare, and the same herin must be obserued. So. Thike you not that the grounde wayeth stronger, [Page] if a man do put more frute in it, like wise as moyles and horses do waxe stronger with cariage / that wolde I desire you to teache me. Whan Ischomchus herde that, he sayd: what Socrates ye ieste with me. But yet, sayde he, take this for a very suretye, that whaune a man hath sowen any seede in the grounde, loke whan the grounde hath most comforte of the ayre with wete and moyst­nes, if the corne be grene newly risen out of the erthe, if he styrre and turne it in ageyne, it is as if it were a sustinance to the groūde, and getteth as moche strength by it / as if it had ben donged. But if ye suffre the groūde cōtinually to brynge forth frute of the sede, it is harde for a weake grounde to brynge forth moche frute styll: lyke wyse as hit is hard for a weake sowe to gyue sucke and sustināce to many pigges, and kepe them fatte and in good plite whan they waxe great. So. Ye sey good Ischomacus that ye muste sowe lesse seede on a weker grounde. Ischo. So I do in dede good Socrates: and ye also dyd graunte hit vnto me a littel afore, whan ye sayd, that ye thought that the weakest shuld be left charged. So. But for what reason good Ischomachus, do ye make dy­ches in the corne feldes? Ischo. Ye wotte [Page 52] wel, that in wynter are many showers. So. what therof? Ischo. Mary therof chaunce many hurtes: for a great parte of the felde is surrounded with water, and the corne coueredde in mudde, and the rootes of moche of the corne are worne and wasshed awaye with the water, and further often tymes by reason of the greate abundaunce of water, there cometh moche wides and other harlotry, that suppresseth & distroyeth the corne. So. It is lyke inough, that all this shulde be. Isc. And thynke ye than, that the corne beinge in that takinge / hath not nede to be holpe? So. Yes mary. Isch. Than if the corne be couered with mudde, what shal we do to helpe it? So. Mary ease the grounde and make it lighter. Ischo. But what if the root is be waxed thynne and almoste worne away? So. Thā ye must cast to more erthe that it maye take roote and growe agayne. Isch. But what if the wides and other har­lotry sucke vp the moysture from the corne, lyke as the drone bees, the whiche beinge them selfes vnprofitable do robbe awaye & eate vp the bees vitayles, that they had set vp for to worke with? So. Mary the wides and harlotry must be pluckte and cut away, lyke wise as the drone bees are voyded our [Page] of the hyues. Ischo. Thynke yon than that we do not make the dyches and sloughes in the feldes for a good cause? So. Forsothe so it is, but I thīke nowe in my mynde good Ischomacus, what a thynge it is to brynge in similitudes & likenessis. For ye haue mo­ued me more a greate deale / and made me more displeased ageynst these wides, whan ye spake of the drone bees, than whan ye spake of the wides them selfes. But nowe after this sayd I, haruest season wyl come / wherfore I pray you tell me if ye haue any thinge to teche me in this matter. Ischo. So I wyl, if ye do not shewe your selfe, that ye knowe it as wel as I. This ones ye knowe that the corne muste alway be reaped. Soc. What els? Isch. Whether than must ye stāde to reape it with the wynde or agaynste the wynde?To reape corne. So. Not agaynst the wynde, for it wolde be a great peyne, as I thynke bothe for the eies and also for the hādes to reape agaynste the eares blowen downe with the wynde. Ischo. And how wyl ye cutte it, at the very toppe, or euen by the groūde? So. If the stalke be short, I wyl cutte it a lowe that there maye be strawe inough: But if it be very hie, I thynke better to cutte it in the myddell, to thentent that nother the thres­shere [Page 53] nor the fanners / shal take more peyne in vayne than nedeth, and that that remay­neth, I thynke if it be burned / hit wyll do the grounde very moche good, and if it be layde with the donge it wyl fyl and encrese it. Ischomacus. Do ye se nowe frende So­crates, howe ye be taken in the very dede doinge, that ye knowe as well as I, what longeth to reapynge? So. In faythe I am aferde lest it be so in dede: And nowe wyll I se like wise whether I can thresshe or not. Ischo. This ye knowe well that horses do thresshe corne. Socra. why shulde I not,To threshe corne and not onely horses but also moyles and oxen lyke wise? Ischo. But howe can these beastis stampe well and thresshe the corne euen as they sh [...]de good Socrates? Soc. It is clere, tha [...] [...] is by the reason of them, whiche haue thecha [...]ge of the thresshynge. For they do euermore turne and styrre and put vnder theyr fee [...] that that is vnthres­shed / and so they must nedes make hit euen, and make an ende of hit as quickely as may be. Ischo. Th [...]h as for this busynes, ye knowe it as wel as I. Socra. Nowe after this good Ischomachus, lette vs clense the corne and wynnowe hit. Ischo. Telle me thā good Socrates, do ye knowe this, that [Page] if ye begynne to winnowe it in that parte of the wynowynge place, where the wynde is ageynst you, that the chaffe wyl be scatered abrode through al the winnowynge place? So. It muste nedes. Ischo. Than it muste nedes as wel fal vpon the corne. So Veri­ly it is no smal poynte to make the chaffe to go beyonde the corne in a voyde rowme of the wynowynge place. But if a man begyn to wynowe vnder the winde, or a syde halfe of hit, than it is clere, that al the chaffe wyl voyde to the place that is ordeyned for hit. Ischo. But whan ye haue clensed the corne euen to the myddyf of the wynowing place, whether than, the corne beinge thus scate­red abrode, wyl ye wynowe the remanant / or wyl ye put fyrste to gether on a heape as narowly as can be al that euer is clene? So. Forsoth I wyl first put to geder on a heape all that is clene, left parauenture the chaffe be caried about the wynowinge place, wher by I shulde be fayne to wynowe twyse one thynge. Ischo. Nowe than gentyl Socra­tes, ye may teche an other man, if ye wyll, how he shal soonest gette his corne clensed. So. In good fayth I had almost forgotte, that I coude all this a greate while ago. And nowe I caste in my mynde, whether I [Page 54] haue forgottē my selfe, that I can playe on a harpe / play vpon recorders / peynte / and carue, and other sciēces. For there was ne­uer man, that taught me these no more thā to be a husbande man. And I se as well o­ther men worke in theyr sciēces as husbāde men laboure the grounde. Ischo. And dyd not I tel you but a littel afore, that this science of husbandry is wonders pleasant and very easy to lerne? So. I knowe very wel good Ischomacus / that I vnderstode and coude al maner of thynges, that do lōge to sowinge / but I haue forgottē my selfe that I coude them. But the settynge of trees sayde I, is that any poynte of husbandry?Settynge of trees. Isch. Yes mary. So. How happeneth than that I knewe wel al suche thynges as lōge to earynge and sowyng / and am ignoraunt in that that longeth to plantynge of trees? Ischo Be ye ignorant in dede? So. I must nedis be, seinge I know not in what groūde a man shulde set a tree / nor howe depe / nor of what length / nor what breade it be sette in / nor whan it is in the groūde how it shal best growe and come vp. Ischo. Wel than lerne that that ye knowe not. I am sure ye haue seen what pyttes they make for trees that do sette them? So. That I haue very [Page] many tymes. Ischo. And dyd ye euer se any of them deper than thre fote? So. No mary I / nor yet deper than two fote and a halfe. Ischo. And as for the brede dyd you euer se any broder than thre fote? So. Forsoth and god / I neuer sawe none past two foote and a halfe brode. Isch. Now answere me this agayne, Dyd ye euer se any of lesse altitude than two foote? So. In very dede I neuer sawe none of lesse altitude thā two fote and a halfe. For if the plantes were but shalow set, they wolde soone be writhed vp. Ischo. Than it is apparāt inough to you good Socrates / that they dygge the pyttes to set in trees, no dyper than two foote and a halfe, nor no broder than two foote and a halfe. So. It must nedes be so, seinge it is so clere. Isc. But touchyng the groūde / do ye knowe which is drie & which is wete, if ye se it? So. Me thynketh the grounde, that lyeth about Licabectꝰ / or any other that is lyke vnto it, is drye grounde: And that is called a wete grounde / the whiche lieth aboute Phaleri­cus, ful of maris al aboute / and any other lyke vnto it. Ischo. Whether than wyll ye digge vp a depe pitte to sette in trees in the dry grounde or in the wete? So. In the dry groūde verily. for if ye shulde make a depe [Page 55] pytte in the wete grounde / ye shulde fynde water: and than ye coulde not sette it in the water. Isch. Me thynketh ye say very wel. And whā the pittes be dygged vp, ye know what trees be mete for both groūdes? So. Very wel. Ischo. And if ye wolde that the tree, whiche ye do sette / shulde growe and come vp well fauordly, whether thynke ye it wyl better springe and waxe mighty and strōge / if ye sette vnderneth erthe that hath ben labored and occupied afore, orels suche as hath ben alwaye vnoccupied. So. It is clere inough sayd I, that it wyl growe and come vp better by the reason of the erthe occupied than of the grounde vnoccupied. Isc. Than there muste some erthe be put vnder­neth? So. Why shulde it not? Isc. But whe­ther thynke ye, that the vyne braunche, the whiche ye sette, wyl gether rootis better if ye sette it streyght vpright, or if ye set it croked vnder the groūde, so that it be lyke this greke lettre, Y, turned vp set downe? So. Mary euen so. For than there shall be the more rootis in the erthe / wherby the plante shall stande the faster, and so many the mo branches shal springe vp. Ischo. Wel than in this matter we haue both one opiniō. But whether wyl ye no more but caste the erthe [Page] to the plante that ye set, orels wil ye treade & rāme it hard downe? So. Forsoth I wyl trede and stampe it harde to, for els it were ieoperdy lest the rayne wolde lightly perce in, and so rotte and marre the rootis / orels the sonne dryinge the erthe away from the rootis of the plante, shulde lewse and vnfa­sten it, and so kyll it. Ischo. wel than good Socrates we be bothe of one opinion tou­chynge settynge of vines. So. And shall I sette a fygge tree after the same maner? Ischo. Yes I trow, and al other trees lyke wyse. For if ye can sette vines wel, what o­ther settynge is ther but that ye may take it vpon you lyke wyse? So. But howe shulde we sette olyue trees good Ischomacus? I pray you proue afore any thynge / whether I can any skylle therin. Ischo. Ye se howe there is a good depe pytte digged for an o­lyue tree, I wote well ye coude not choose but se hit, seinge they be digged euen by the high wayes syde. Also ye se howe the very stockes of the olyues be sette in the settynge place. And farther ye se howe there is clay layde vpon the toppes of them: And howe of all trees that be planted, there are none couered aboue / but only the same. So. All this I se well. Isc. And whan ye se it / what [Page 56] shulde be the let, that ye shuld not knowe it: excepte parauenture ye can nat tell howe to clappe a shelle fast to the clay, that is set on the toppe therof? So. By my faythe, of all this that ye haue spoken, there is nothynge but I know it. And now I cast in my minde agayne, what is the cause / that whan ye asked me but a littel afore in generall, whe­ther I coude set trees, I sayde no. For me thought I coude not tell / how a man shulde set trees▪ But after ye began to enquere of me euery thynge by it selfe, I answered you according to your mynde, and to your owne opinion, the whiche be called the moste par­fecte husbande man, that is now at this day alyue. Is not my chance good, Ischomacus sayde I, askyng a maner of teachynge? For I haue lerned & can wel nowe euery thynge by it selfe / what so euer ye haue demanded of me. For ye leade me by suche thynges / as I am skilled in & vnderstande, vnto suche thynges as I perceyued not: and so ye per­swade and make me beleue that I knowe them as well as the tother. Ischo. Well, thynke ye, that if I asked you after the same maner touchinge syluer or golde / whiche is good and which is badde, that I coude per­swade you, that ye be a good trier of golde [Page] and syluer? And agayne, I coude not par­swade you, if I asked you neuer so moche, that ye can play vpon recorders, or that ye can peynte, or do any suche thynges? Soc. Parauenture yes. For ye haue parswaded me, that I haue well the science of husban­dry: and yet I knowe wel, that there was neuer any body that taught me that science. Ischo. It is not so good Socrates: For I haue tolde you a praty while ago, that hus­bandry is so pleasant and so familiar a sci­ence, that they, the whiche do eyther se hit, or here tel of hit, be euen by and by well lerned in it. And also it sheweth many thynges it selfe for a man to lerne, howe to order it best. For euen at the first the vine, the whi­che crepeth vp vpon the trees, if there be a­ny nere hande it, sheweth, that it wolde be holpen vp and susteyned. And whan it spre­deth abrode his leaues and braunches, the grapis beinge yet but veri tēder, it shewith, that in that season hit wolde haue shadowe made there vnto hit, where as the heate of the sonne lyeth soore vpon it. And whan hit is tyme for the grapis to waxe ripe & swete the which is caused only by the heate of the sonne, it letteth the leaues fal, to teache the husbāde men, that it wolde be lightned and [Page 57] eased, that the frute maye the better waxe rype. And whan that by the reason it hath brought forth moche frute, and some ar ry­pe and some not, it sheweth, that those clo­sters, that be rype, must be gedered, like as on fygge trees they muste be taken downe / that be rype and redy to be gethered. Soc. Howe can this be, good Ischomacus, if husbandry be so easy to lerne, and euery man knoweth what is to be done, as well one as an other, that they haue not a lyuinge by hit al a lyke? For some haue great plentye and lyue welthily, and other som haue scātly so moche as they nede, and be in dette to other men? Isch. Mary I wyl tel you good Socrates, hit is nother the knowelege nor lacke of knowelege of husbande men / that maketh some of them riche and som powre. For ye shal not lightly here suche a tale go about, that suche a mans house is vndone, bicause he hath not sowed euen: or bycause that he hath nat well sette and planted his trees: or bicause he knewe not what groūd was good for vynes, he hath sette his in a naughty grounde: or bicause he knewe not, that it was good to falowe the grounde be­fore he did sowe it: or bicause he knew not, that it was good to dounge hit. But this ye [Page] may here often tymes very wel, This man getteth no croppe on his grounde this yere. For he hath made no prouisyon to gette hit sowed, or to gette it dounged. And agayne: This man getteth no wyne. For he nother careth to plante any vynes in his grounde / nor seeth nothynge to those, that be alredy planted, to make them brynge forthe some frute. This man hath no oyle. This man hath no fyggis: For he wyll take no peyne nor applie his mynde to haue any. These be the causes good Socrates, that make one husbāde man to differre from an other, and to be also vnlyke in substance and in riches / a great dele more / thā if any of them semed to be experter in his workes and businessis. And of the capitaynes of warre lyke wise, there be many, the whiche haue egally good wytte and very good sight in suche thynges as do longe to warre, and yet there be some of them better and some worse / and that is throughe the diuersite of takynge hede and of diligence. For suche thynges as all capi­taynes do knowe, and also the most part of them, that were neuer in that dignite, some capitaynes do them and some not. As thus. All they knowe, that it is better for them, that shal leade an army through their enne­mies [Page 58] lande to marche forwarde in good or­der and array: that they may be alway re­dy to fight, if nede be. And yet som of them that knowe this very well do hit, and some do not. Also all they knowe / that it is beste to kepe watches and scoutwaches bothe by nyght and by day: And yet some of them se well to, that it be surely kept, and some do not. Agayne / whan they leade theyr army through narowe places / ye shall all moste fynde none, but that he knoweth, it is better to preuente theyr enemies be tymes than to late. And yet some of them do theyr dily­gēce, that they may so do, and some do not. And lyke wyse of doungynge. Euery man sayth / it is very good and necessary for the grounde to dounge hit. And they se / howe men may haue it bothe of bestis in his owne kynd, and also fynde other meanes to haue it, and make easily a very great deale ther­of. And yet some take hede, that hit be ge­tered, and some let it passe, and care not for hit. Yet god sendeth rayne from aboue, and al maner of holowe grounde receyueth hit / and kepeth it / and waxeth a pouddell with it. The groūde bryngeth forth al maner of wydes and naughty harlotry. And he that wyll sowe, muste fyrst rydde and purge the [Page] grounde, and suche wydes and thynges as he gethereth out of the lande if he cast them into the water / in proces of tyme it woll be as good and as holsome to the grounde, as any donginge. for what wydes be there, or what groūd is it, that wyl not becom doūge in very dede, if it be cast in to stādynge wa­ter? More ouer what remedy is there, if the grounde be to wete to sowe in hit? or to soore to set trees in it? Euery mā knoweth, that the water muste be voyded out by ma­kynge of dytches and sloughes pourposely therfore: and how the soorenes is minished and mitigated, if all maner of thynges / the whiche be not soore / whether they be drye or were / be myngled ther with. And some husbandes take good hede to this, and some regarde it not. But if a man knowe neuer a whitte, what the grounde wyl bringe forth, nor can se nother frute nor tree in it / nor speke with no man / that shall tell hym the trouthe of hit: is it not farre a great deale easier to haue a profe of hit, than eyther of a horse or a man? For that that it sheweth, it is not shewed falsely and colorably: but tilled it sheweth the very trouthe / without any faynynge / what it can brynge forth / and what not. And forsothe me thynketh / [Page 59] that the grounde doth best examyne, which be good / and whiche be vnthryfty husban­des, in that that it setteth forth al maner of thynge so easy to be lerned, and so soone to be knowen. For it is not in husbandry as it is in other craftes / that they, the whiche do not worke, may excuse them selfes, and sey that they can not skyyl to do it: but eue­ry man knoweth, that if the grounde be wel tylled and husbandly handled, it sheweh vs pleasure agayne for it. And surely husban­dry is it / that best proueth a mans vnlusty corage and sluggisshe disposition. For there is no man can parswade hym selfe, that a a man can lyue without suche thynges as be necessary. But he that hath no science / wherby he may gette his lyuynge, nor wyl not fall to husbandry: it is clere / he is ey­ther a starte foole / orels he purposeth to gette his lyuynge by robbinge and stelyng / orels by begginge. More ouer, sayde he, it made greatly to the matter, concernynge the gettynge or losynge by husbandry, that whan they haue many laborers and seruā ­tes, that the tone taketh good hede, that his worke men be sette to theyr worke in due season and tyme, and the tother doth not. For that man is better than ten other / that [Page] falleth to his worke in season. And that mā is farre worse than an other, the whiche suffreth his worke men to leaue theyr worke and go theyr way ouer tymely. And as for betwene hym, that suffreth his worke men and laborers to trifyll away the day, and hym that wyll not, there is as greate dife­ference, as betwene the holle worke finis­shed and the halfe of hit: Lyke wyse as in iorneyinge by the way in fyfty myle space / two men, whiche go bothe one waye, and though they be bothe as swyfte, as holle / as yonge, and as lusty the tone as the to­ther: yet the tone shall ouer go the tother. xxv. myle in a day, if the tone goth on his iourney lustily, and the tother for slouthe & cherisshinge of hym selfe, resteth by the way besydes springes and fountaynes, and se­keth for shadowes and softe wyndes to re­fresshe hym with. Lyke wyse in workynge there is greate oddes, whan a man doth applye lustyly his worke, and whan he dothe not, and rather fyndethe excuses, why he shulde not worke, and suffereth his folke e­uery daye to trifle forth the tyme. And as for to worke wel and diligētly, or to worke nought and negligently, there is as great difference betwene these two thynges, as [Page 60] is betwene hym that worketh and hym that workethe neuer a whytte. For whan they go aboute to clense the vynes from wydes and harlotry, if they dygge in suche wyse, that therby growe vp mo and greatter wi­des than dydde before, why maye it not be sayde, that they were idel and wrought ne­uer a whitte. And therfore these be the thynges, by the whiche many mens housholdes be a greatte deale rather vndone, than for lacke of science or of great knowlege. For a man that is at great costis and charges in his house, and can not gette as moche, no­ther by his rentes, nor by his husbandry, as wyl fynde hym and his meyny: it is no maruayle, if in the stede of great plenty and riches, he fall in to extreme pouertie. But vnto suche men as wyll diligentlye applye them selfe to husbandry, and increase theyr substaunce and shortely waxe riche therby, my father shewed somtyme a good precept, the whiche also he taught vnto me. He coū ­seiled me, that I shuld neuer bye that groūd the whiche hath ben well laboured and tyl­led, but suche a grounde, as remayned vn­laboured and vntilled, either through theyr negligence, that owed it, orels bicause they were not able to do it. For the groūd that is [Page] wel tylled and dight, wyl coste moche more money, and yet hit is than euen at the beste: And the grounde / that can waxe no better, can not make a man to haue so moche plea­sure, and to reioyce so moche / as the tother doth, whiche waxeth better and better. For he thought, that all maner of goodes / whether it be londe or catell, the whiche do en­creace and waxe better / causethe a man to haue more pleasure and ioye in it. And there is nothynge, that increaseth more than doth that grounde, the whiche laye before vn­tylled & vndight, and nowe is waxed good and frutefull. And be ye sure of this good Socrates, that we haue often tymes made moche lande, that we haue bought a greate deale more worthe than the price that hit was bought for at the fyrst. And this cast, that is so notable and so profitable, is so easy to lerne, that nowe ye haue ones harde it / ye can it as well as I, & ye may teche it vnto other, if ye lyst. But as for my father, he neuer lerned hit of none other man, nor neuer spente greatte studye to fynde it out: But bicause his minde was greatly set vpon husbandry, and also he had a pleasure to la­boure, he sayde, he desyred to haue suche a grounde, that both he myght haue somwhat [Page 61] to do, and also that the profite commynge of hit myght reioyce hym. For me thynketh good Socrates, that of all the Atheniens, my fathers mynde was moste set vpon hus­bandry, euen of his owne nature. Socra. And whan I harde that, I asked him: whether dyd your father kepe styll to him selfe all the lande that he occupied, or dyd he sell any of hit, if he coude get moche money for it? Isch. Yes mary he dyd selle some of it nowe and than: immediatly after he wolde bye an other pece, that laye vntylled and vndighte, bicause his mynde was so moche set to laboure and to husbandrye. So. For sothe good Ischomacus, ye shewe me here a maruailous desire and affection, that your father had to husbandrye, none other wyse as me thynkethe, than some marchauntes myndes be set vpon wheate. For marchant men by the reason that theyr hartes is sore fixed vpon wheate, where so euer they here that there is most wheate, thether wyll they in any wyse resorte, and wyll not stycke for daunger to passe any see what so euer it be. And whan they haue boughte vp as moche therof as they can get, they shyppe it in the selfe same shyp that they sayle in them selfe, and so bringe it home. And whan they haue [Page] nede of money, I trow they do not sell it a way rasshely, not carynge in what place, as though they desired to be lightly dispatched therof: but they brynge it thither to sell, where they here, that wheate is at a great price, and where as men wolde very fayne haue it. Ischo. Wel Socrates ye ieste with me: but yet me thynketh he loueth the ma­sons crafte neuer the worse, that buyldeth houses and selleth them, and maketh newe agayne afterwarde. Soc. By my faythe I swere to you good Ischomacꝰ, I beleue you very wel, in that ye thynke, that euery man loueth best, and setteth his mynde most vpō that thynge, wherby he thynkethe to gette any great profitte. But nowe I consider in my mynde, howe wel al your commynicaci­on hath serued to the purpose and groūd of this matter. For your grounde and begyn­nynge was, that the science of husbandry is soonest and best lerned of all other sciences: And now by the reason of that that ye haue sayd, I am vtterly perswaded, that it is so. Forsoth sayd Ischomacus, hit is so in very dede. But as for that thynge that is egally common to al mennes dedes, whether it be in the exercise of husbandry, or in the orde­rynge of an house, or in the gouernynge of [Page 62] a Citie, or in the knowlege and science of feates of warre, I graunte you very well that there be some men, that haue a far bet­ter witte, a farre better cast and policie, and knowe better howe to rule and commande, than some other do. Like as in a galey whā they be on the see, and muste dryue as farre with oores in a daye, as they shulde sayle, there be some, that be sette to comforte and corage them, the which haue so good grace both in their wordes and ī their dedes, that they so quicken and encorage men, that they laboure with all their verry hartes. And there be other some so grosse and so rude, that they wyl be twyse as lōge in makynge of theyr viage, as the tother were. And as for the tother, they come downe russhynge meryly sweatynge and preysynge one an o­ther. And as for these felowes they come downe leyserly, and they neuer sweate for the matter, they hate the maister of the ga­ley, and he agayne hateth them. And after the same maner there be some Capitaynes, that do differ one from an other. For there be some, that can not brynge it to passe, to make their soudiours gladde to take peyne, nor to put them selfes in ieopardie, but euen very than whan they can not chose, but they [Page] wyl rather bost them selfes, and take it for a great preyse, that they maye contrary the capitaynes mynde, nor the capitaynes can not instructe theym to be asshamed, if any thynge misfortune, that is worthye of re­buke. But there be other, whiche be good, wyse, and politike capitaynes, the whiche if they take in hand the selfe same men, or pa­rauenture other, as they do often tymes, they wyll make them to be asshamed to do any thynge, that shulde tourne to theyr re­buke, and to thynke that it is best for them, bothe to be obediente euery one of them by hym selfe, and whan nede requireth to take peyne, gladly to do hit all to gether with a very good wyll. And lyke wise as there be some priuate men, the which of theyr owne nature be gladde to take labour and peyne, So a good capitayne engendreth this affe­ction in all his hostis mynde, that they be gladde to be put to peyne, and they coueite nothynge els so moche, as to be preysed for some greatte and notable acte, done in the sight of their capitayne. And what so euer capitaynes they be, that haue suche men of warre vnder them, berynge to them warde so good mynde and fauoure, I saye they in very dede be myghty and stronge: and not [Page 63] they, the whiche haue a greate myghty bo­dy, and can throwe a darte, and shote very wel: Nor they that haue good horses, and can runne with a speare and iuste afore any man: but they that can brynge theyr soudi­ours in to suche affection and beleue, that they wolde gladly folowe them throughe fyre and water, and through all maner of daunger. Suche men maye well be called hardy and valyant, that haue so many bold men redy and preste to do what so euer they commaunde. And hit maye well be sayde, that he goth forward with a myghty strōge hande, that hath so many hādes folowynge hym redy at his pleasure. And he may be called a very great man in dede, the whiche doth very greatte actes, more by prudence and wisedome, than through the strength of his body. More ouer whether he be a de­bite or a ruler, that can make men redy and gladde to applie theyr worke, and brynge them to continue well in hit, they be those, that shall soonest get goodes and growe to great substaunce. And as for the maister, if he be suche a man that can well punisshe the laborers, that do nought, and reward them that do very wel, yet whan he cometh to the workes, if the laborers do make no shewe [Page] of it, I wyll not set greatly by hym: but he the whiche whan they do se hym, they be all moued and styrred vp, and haue a greatte corage and desire one to do better than ano­ther, and a feruente mynde to be praysed a­boue al, I say that that man hath som thīge of the disposition longynge to a kynge. And me thynketh it is a very great poynte in all maner of thynges, that be done by the helpe of men, as well as it is in husbandry. And to obteyne hit, verily I wyll not saye, as I haue done in husbandrye, that a man shall lerne it, if he ones seeth it, or hereth it tolde, but I say, he that wyll be able to do it, had nede to be very wel instructed, and eke to be of a good gentyll nature, and that is moste of all to haue a very great grace and gyfte of god. For me thynketh this grace cometh not all of man, to rule and gouerne so, that men very gladly wyll be obedient, but it is rather a special gifte of almighty god: and he graunteth it vnto them that be indowed with vertue and temperaunce. But to rule men tyrnnously against their wylles, he putteth thē vnto it (as me semeth) yt he iugeth worthy to lyue thus in the worlde, as they say, that Tantalus dryueth forth the tyme in helle, beinge alway aferde to dye twyse.


❧ Imprinted at London in Flete-strete, by Thomas Berthelet printer to the kynges most noble grace. an. M. D. xxxij. Cum priuilegio.

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