A Pleasant and VVitty COMEDY: Called, A New Tricke to Cheat the Divell.


Written by R. D. Gent.

LONDON: Printed by Iohn Okes, for Humphrey Blunden, and are to be sold at his Shop in Corne-hill, next to the Castle Taverne. 1639.

To the Courteous Reader, and gentle peruser.

TO make too long an explanation of the worth of the Author, or to commend the Worke with Eloquent words, were but to delay the time, and dull thy expectation: It is a Comedy which hath bin often acted, and so well approved; that I hope none will dislike of it now in the reading: But the Poem it selfe, being now an Orphant, and wanting the Father which first begot it, craves a Patronage from thy gentle acceptance: my hopes are, it will prove no lesse pleasing to the Reader, than it hath formerly beene to the Spectators; and so I leave it to thy charitable Censure.


Dramatis Persona.

  • The young Lord Skales.
  • Treatwell. His Man.
  • Master Changeable.
  • Master Slightall. A young Gentleman.
  • Roger. His Men.
  • Geffrey. His Men.
  • Fryer Bernard.
  • Fryer John.
  • Ʋsurer.
  • Scrivener.
  • Host.
  • Hostesse.
  • Mristris Changeable.
  • Anne, her Daughter.
  • Two Maides.
  • Constable.
  • Two Gentlemen.

A New Tricke to Cheat the Divell.

Actus primus,

Scaena prima.

Enter Slightall, and Mistresse Anne.

I doe protest.


Come, you flatter mee.

May I perish then, if ever thought was
Harbour'd in this brest,
That did intend you harme;
Your Father hath consented you shall be mine;
Your Mother still holds off: but having yours,
I care not who withstands;
I am fixt your Servant and true Lover.
And I thine, in spight of Father, Mother, kinsfolkes,
Friends; thy Anne will ne're forsake thee.
Then here my dearest, doe I plight a vow,
And sweare by thy owne vertuous grace and sweetnesse,
By those intrammell'd Raies, those star-like eyes
Endymion blushes on; those Ruby lippes,
[Page]Where a red Sea of kisses is divided
By rocks of pearle, by these joyn'd hands, and all things
That have tyed my love to thine; Ile ne're forsake thee.

Slightall, My vow is fix'd, no more, my Father.

Enter Changeable.
I have over-heard all,
My blessing on you both:
Slightall, I love thee, and am glad th'hast sped;
How I have pleaded for thee, Minion, you know.
Father I doe, pray you for a while
Conceale it from my Mother.
Feare not that wench, how I have labour'd with her
You know well, but no consent from her, it is impossible:
What I have stor'd for thee high Heaven does know,
But 'tis my love, which stil continues to this wayward Girle
Who never could have pleas'd her Father better
Then in this mutuall and conjoyn'd assent.
Ent. Mrs. Changable, & Mr. Treatwell.
Further I would proceed, but see, my wife
Consorted with a stranger.
Sir, here's a gentleman (Slightall so neere?)
Desires your conference (no devise at all
To shift him hence?) His businesse craves dispatch,
And is of serious urgence; 'twould become
Your modesty to spare us some few minutes,
Since it no whit concernes you.
He shall stay, hee's now ingraft ascien in our Family:
Therefore what us concernes must needs touch him,
Sonne, sonne, be constant to your place I charge you.



Remove for no man, now sir speake your mind.


What in a place so publique?


Yes, even here.

A place more private would become my message,
And give it gentle hearing.

Pray with draw, it comes from a great man.

Came it from on of the Guard, from Sir Iohn Falstaffe?
Nay, Hercules himselfe; with bumbast limbes
It should have publique audience.

Daughter, a word.


Now your bigge man, name him I pray.


From the yong Lord Skales.

I cry you mercy, my honourable friend, I pray
What service will't please him to command us?

Listen unto't, 'tis all for your preferment.


Feare and doubt perplex me equally.

The Lord my Master, to whom the fame of
Your faire Daughters beauty hath throng'd by infinite
Tongues, hath in his breast
Tooke such a strong impression, that hee's pleas'd
(So your consent and his may paralell)
To make her his faire Bride.

How spake you that?


You shall be a great Lady.


His faire Bride?


And take place of al Knights wives in the Shiere.

Sir, I have full Commission from his mouth
To treat so much; and what I undertake
He hath engag'd his honour to make good.
His honour? so you shall be honourable,
Be every day Caroach'd; and ride in state.

A Lady, and Caroach'd?


Pray sir, your answer.

I wish his Lord ship had not sent so late,
My word is pass'd unto this gentleman;
Which to my power I will not change, nor breake
For any King or Keisar.
But you shall sir, and send his Lordship satisfaction
Even to his best desire; tell him from me
She shall attend his pleasure: you shall, Nan,
Vse him with all obsequious reverence,
And gladly embrace his motion; Girle, you shall.

Without our approbation?

Forward sir, if you withstand the fortune of your Daughter
In this tract of preferment without yours.
Send him faire humble language, doe my wench
Accept his noble pleasure, and returne him
Courteous and loving thankes; thinke what it is
To be attended, honoured, and advanc'd.
[Page]My Lady Anne you shall.

My Lady Anne?


How poore and slightly Mistresse Slightall sounds?


Good troth and so it doth.

But Donna Anne, Madona, Madam, Lady,
What breadth those Titles beare?

And so they doe.

Mistris? thou shalt have such to be thy servants,
And curchy to thee when thou turn'st thy head;
Bow at each nod, and make their Farthingales,
At every word thou speak'st, to kisse their heeles.

Well pleaded Grannam Eve.

What should I say? or how in equall
Ballance beare my selfe?
Footmen, Pages, and your gentlemen Ushers,
Walke bare before you.

Bare before me? well.

For all the stiles of honour in the World,
I would not breake my faith.
Where I was wont to call thee baggage, Nan,
And paltry Girle, I must not dare to speake to your
Honour, without a Prologue of some halfe an houre long,
Which must begin, an't please your Ladiship.

'Tis passing good an't please my Ladiship.

Son Slightall, for that Title Ile still fasten
Upon thy name, advise me' what shall we doe?
Me thinkes the motion might be faire and even,
To make her mistresse of her owne free thoughts
And chuse where she best likes.

Weele stand to that, let it be put to her.


Son, what say you?

In her knowne love I am so confident,
And of her faith so constantly assur'd,
So void of all distrust; that I give backe
All interest, Title, claime, and Ceremony
T'attend a second Censure. Mristris Changeable,
You now are your owne woman.

Madam, may it please you take a second choise?

Here's Gentry, and here's Honour, Mrs. or Madam.
A single ambling Nag, or a Caroach
With foure, foure great Dutch Mares; a private Gentle­woman
Or a great Lady, my worship, or my honour;
To be a Wife to a Squire of low Degree,
Or a Lord Baron: Gentry shall give place,
And in a puff'd stile his Lordship Ile embrace.
Thus, Slightall, I thy Title will out-strip,
That all may say, there goes my Ladyship.
You have your answer Slightall, and good sir,
Returne this to my Lord.

Sir be my witnesse, I have no hand in this.

Exeunt all but Slightall.
All come to this? shone the Sun bright i'th' morne
To be ere Noone envelopp'd in this Cloud?
To be forsooke, despised, and disgrac'd
All for a verball Title? shall I avenge me
On the proud Don, or this his changeable stuffe?
Whose name and disposition suite so well:
Something I must, but in the interim
Never to fixe a constant thought againe
Upon that Moone-like sexe: Ile weigh them all,
Poore, rich, old, yong, and middle Age alike;
Make no distinction 'twixt the loose and chast,
The Matron and the wanton, women kind;
For the so base inconstancy of one,
Henceforth Ile forme my selfe alike to all:
Licentiousnesse shall be my Mistresse now,
Voluptuous pleasure, riot and excesse
My future study; Ile let loose desire
And appetite unbridled; and the more
Of that intemperate Sexe I can corrupt
Count it my greatest deede of Charity:
And for thy sake, thou falsest faire; I vow
Affection and all loyall Love t'abjure,
Striving to make the clearest streames impure.

Act. 1. Scaen. 2.

Enter Ʋsurer, and his Scrivener.

HOw goes the newes o'th'Change?

Faith never worse, Merchants are wary,
Tradsmen provident, Artificers turn'd frugall, and I thinke
All the World will prove good husbands.
Better they, with halfe a number of that thrifty world
Were three parts hang'd; but so much for the City:
What newes in Holborne, Fleet-street, and the Strand?
In th'Ordinaries among Gallants, no young Heires
There to be snapp'd?
Th'have bin so bit already
With taking up Commodities of browne paper,
Buttons past fashion, silkes, and Sattins,
Babies, and Childrens Fiddles, with like trash
Tooke up at a deare rate, and sold for trifles
That now scarce one will bite.

What a world's this? what will't grow to in th'end?

Faith sir Heaven knowes,
We Scriveners fare the worse by't.
How smart wee then?
We Mony Masters, from whose bagges you feede,
And without whom your Pens would cast no Inke?
Nor your VVaxe take impression: none in chace?
Yes, sir, I have one Spung that could you squeeze him,
Would yeeld good substance.

Is he well possess'd?

Yes sir, he hath in Acres glebe and medow,
Upland, and Dale, in woods and arrable;
And though in name a private Gentleman,
Yet hath he three faire Lordships, besides Sheepe-walkes,
Parkes, and other large Demesnes.

And will he fell?

I have dealt closely with a man of his
To undermine him, one that soothes him up
In all his riots, quarrells with his thrifty,
Leades him to Game and guzzle in Vaulting houses,
[Page]And places of bad fame.
An honest fellow, Ile warrant him;
Can hee doe ought in this?
Hee's one to whom he trusts his whole Estate,
And can doe all things with him: In these Lands
I promis'd him, if when they were in sayle
That I might bring his Chapman; a round summe,
To which he seem'd to listen.
'Twas well scented,
Nor shalt thou lose by't: there's a share for thee;
Acquaint me with the further Circumstance,
In which I would be perfect.
Enter Roger and Geffrey, 2. Servingmen.

I doe not like this shufling.


What Roger, al amort, me thinkes th'art off o'th'hookes?

Yes faith, and Henges too, I'me almost desperate,
And care not how I am.
Faith I was never on a merrier pinn,
Nor my breast lighter hearted.

More Rogue thou.



So, and if thou beest not pleas'd with that,
Thou must prepare for worse.

Thou wilt not swagger, Hodge?

Faith scarce with thee, thou art not worth my anger

Are we not of one House?

Yes, but I hope we ne're shall be of one heart,
My fellow no better than a Pander?


Yes, would that were all, a Traytor to that House
Where thou hadst thy first Bread, and almost thy being;
Thy making I am sure, but ne're that poyson
That swells so in thy bosome: My good old Master,
Heaven rest his soule, uprising, and downe lying,
Kept twenty stout tall fellowes, whom thy basenesse
Hath shrunke to two already; if this Ryot
To which thou still perswad'st the young man hold,
We shall be none, he nothing.
I could answer thee, but that I spy two Gentlemen,
[Page]With whom I have businesse of my Masters.

That's the man.


And to me none more welcome.


Is it done?

All's plotted, we want money, sell we must,
The rate we live at must have fresh supply;
Ile give you the whole project.
Get you together, for a true-love knot
Tyed by the Divell, may his Dam unloose it,
For I shall never: a Scrivener, an Ʋsurer, and a Pimpe,
All joyn'd in one, to ruine a yong hopefull Gentleman.
Now are they turning an old three mens Song,
We be knaves all three, mount your notes aloft;
For he that I nam'd last will beare the burthen;
A load best fitting him, you'le find him one day
A fellow of excellent carriage, hee'le beare with you,
Because he loves you so: So now all's plotted
Exeunt all three.
And there's a Lordship, or a Mannour at least
Gone at one lift: but what to doe with money,
Of which the least is like to come to him
That hath most interest in't; some to the Pot,
Part to the Pipe, not least share to the smocke:
And what remaines to gaudifie the backe,
Must fill the Cheaters pocket; oh my old Master,
Should thy soule see this, it would suffer for't,
As my heart bleedes to thinke of't.
Enter Slightall, & 2. Gentlemen.
Gen. 1.

But did she breake so with you?

Worse than a shop-keeper, that hath
Run long behind hand.
Gen. 2.

Slight you so?

S' foot, like a puffe, a Feather▪ 'tis my Lord
Must deale in whole-sale with her Lady ware,
And I am quite casheir'd.
Gen. 1.
Troth I commend you, that, so loving her,
You doe not tak't to heart.
A heart? at heele; that poore worme, Love,
Which some doe stile a God;
I thus tread underfoot, stampe on his shaft,
[Page]And trample on his Quiver: I must confesse
I once lov'd beyond thought, but when I saw
My troth so bafled, and my faith despis'd;
I set it at defiance, and I now
Will be for all, or any.
Gen. 1.
What, so generall, I pray? is't possible
One that hath lov'd sincerely, as you say
You once did, should with such an easinesse
Change his affection?

I can teach thee do't.

Gen. 2.

Good, prompt us that.

I love all fashions, features, formes and faces,
Proportions, sexes, ages, and degrees,
Discretions, wits, disposures, callings, places,
Indowments, faculties, and all alike;
Since one hath fail'd, I affect all as any, any as one.
Gen. 1.

This is not possible.


I pitty the young Monster.

For example, Ile teach thee how to love
The loathed'st Creature; Marry I must turne Poeticall.
Gen. 1.

Prompt us that.


Nay I must be in rime too.

Gen. 2.

All is pardon'd.

Then, thus I doe begin;
Dissemble every fault in their Complexions.
And take no notice of their imperfections:
Andromeda was belly, sides, and backe
To Perseus seene, he did not tearme her blacke;
Andromache was of too large a stature,
One loving Hector prais'd her gifts of nature.
To her whose skin was blacke as Ebone was
I have said ere now, Oh, 'tis a Nut-browne Lasse.
Or if she lookt a squint (as I am true
So Venus look'd) if she be bleake of hew;
Pale, for the World, like Pallas; be she growne
By Iove, Minerva up and downe.
If she be tall, then for her height commend her,
If she be leane, like envy terme her slender.
[Page]She that is puff'd like Boreas in the cheeke,
Is but full fat, and Daphne she is like.
She that is Dwarfish, name her light, and quicke;
And call her well set, this is grubbed thicke.
Is this your Lesson? curse upon that Tutor
That read you this damn'd Lesson.

This was Ovid; how approve you these his precepts?

Gen. 2.

Excellent Tutor.


Or rather excellent Divell.

I could instruct you in a Thousand such▪
And never trouble Memory.
To what the poxe, will this your practise bring you?
In these dayes men doe sell their Lands, their Fortunes,
And their Estates to purchase them diseases.




Provide me a good lusty Lasse to night,
I purpose to be merry.

Sir, not I.

I care not of what humour, face, or feature,
So thou canst find one impudent enough;
Search all the Allyes, Spittle, or Pickt-hatch,
Turnball, the Banke side, or the Minories,
White Fryers, St. Peters Street, and Mutton Lane,
So thou canst find one to disgrace her sexe,
She best shall please my Pallat,

He hath ill tast, that loves to feede on Carrion.

Get me likewise a noise of Fidlers, and a supper too,
Equall with that which old Vitellius made,
When Art would exceed Nature; had I beene he
And had his rich Exchequor, I would have fed
On nothing but Earths choisest rarities,
Drunke nought but Pearle dissolv'd.
Pray sir a word:
Can this world last ever? you sell, and sell,
But when the mony is spent, are you resolv'd
To feede on Huskes, and Acornes? I am plaine,
How many monthes did your old Fathers spend
[Page]To purchase that you in few houres consume?
Ha, doth this startle you? I am trusty Roger,
And so you still shall find me: did he compasse
That competent Estate he left to you
By Fidlers whores, and Cheaters? looke you big?
Nay sir, I can affront you; where be now
Those furnish'd Tables, whose long backes bid bend
With Chines of Beefe, and Chargers, feasting both
Neighbours and strangers? are they
Ryotted on lifts and whiflers?
Gen. 1.

Name you any here?

If none be gall'd, you have no cause to wince,
But if you be, then Figo.
Gen. 2.

Here's none such.

Then doe not interrupt me: Baudes and Whores,
Panders and Pimpes, did he keepe such about him?
I hope none here are touch'd; call him to mind, sir,
And thinke upon his worthy memory,
And how you loose your selfe.

My servants servant? slave, fetch me straight a Whore.

An Office fit for none but slaves, I am none;
You had best bid these that are acquainted with them.

These are Gentlemen, my friends, and my Companions.

If they be Gentlemen, let them shew them such,
That is t'abhorre those vices you are wrapt with.
Ile have Musicke, and the choisest Cates the Citty can
Afford, and wine in abundance.

And pay all.


Yes, all and some.

But some must sure repent it, when all is gone and wasted
Pox upon you, we shall have you turne Puritan,
Leave big mouth'd Oathes to sweare by yea and nay:
Th'art not for me, give me a man can roare,
Shew hackes upon his Sword, bristle, looke big,
Knowes all the Postures of a true Duello;
Give and retort the lye in his full nature:
Can weigh and drinke by measure all, or halfe
To a rundle, or the circuit of a haire,
[Page]Can weigh his drinke as well as measure it,
And without frownes or grumbling still attend
Ent. Geffry
On my free humours: Geffrey, well return'd, the newes?

I have gone through sir.


So would my sword had thee.


We shall have money then?


A Thousand pounds brought in to night.


On what conditions, Geffrey?

Trifles sir, acknowledging a Statute, nothing else;
'Tis finisht in a moment.
And Ile doe it; In th'interim goe, bespeake us delicates
The best and choicest, the dearer they shall prove
The better they will taste; Wenches too, Geffrey,
Thou know'st my mind, thou see'st our number.

Three sir.

Unlesse thy selfe wilt make a fourth with us,
And bring (with thee for thine owne appetite)
Some courser stuffe to keepe thee Company,
And sit at the buy Table.

It shall be done, Ile be your Mercury.


And Musicke Geffrey.

If any thing to whet dull appetite,
To heighten pleasure, and inflame delight
Be this night wanting, ere Sun rise to morrow
Cashiere me from your service.
Here's a fellow, whose industry doth merit double hire,
Of a free Countenance and a light appetite,
When this still frowning grim and surly sir,
Has nothing in his face but melancholly,
And in his tongue repining.

You'le one day find the difference.

Come Gentlemen, shall we to Cardes,
And spend an houre at Gleeke?
Gen. 1.

No better motion.


Game too, all will helpe to send a man a going.

Gen. 2.

Sixe penny Gleeke?


Faith Twelve pence if you please.

Gen. 2.

I am content.


And so is he too, to be gleek'd of all.

What, will you please to attend us some few houres,
In absence of your fellow?
Yes, so there be no whores in Company,
But rather then feast where they shall domineere,
And bold Rampalian like, sweare and drinke drunke,
Ile feede on Cheese, and Onions; and in stead
Of healthing, quench my thirst with frighted water.

Well sir, will you follow?

I will not haunt him as the Divell doth,
But for once I will dogge him.
Exeunt all.

Actus Secundus,

Scaene. 1.

Enter Changable, his Wife, and Anne.

CRoss'd at these yeares?

Unlesse your wit were gray as wel as your haires;
You grow in yeares, and so you should in wisedome.

Taxe my wit? a woman too, to do't?

Did you never see a bare face teach a beard?
It is no newes in this so pregnant age.
An Age indeed, when smockes must read to britches;
Goe to wife, thou seek'st to make us two that should be one,
Instead of me, th'art wedded to thy will;
I feare we shall repent it.

Well, well, man.


But I say, ill, ill woman.

Why I pray?
Because I seeke the advancement of our house?
I would not build so many stories high
On such a weake foundation, lest the Garret
Rear'd on such thin supporters sinke it selfe into the Celler.
One of your gravity? I am asham'd, a Justice by
[Page]Your place, and can appeare so partiall to your owne;
Whom should your providence devise to raise,
If not your owne? will you be twice a Child?
And now, in this your second infancy,
Not take care for your Cradle?

Thou art a shrew.


Why then I am no sheepe.


An angry woman.


It should be then your care to see me better pleas'd.


I pray, good mother, nay, sir.

Sir me no sirs, I am no Knight nor Church-man,
There is a third, make me not that by breaking of my faith.
Thinke what it is to have a great Lord call you
Father in Law, and so your Daughter a great Lady.
So; I had rather see her a good Gentlewoman,
Lawfully great in belly and in purse,
Than swell'd with poyson'd Titles; it to me
Appeares no better than a Timpany,
A griefe not easily cur'd.
His Lordship will be here, give him good face,
And curteous Language, or Ile make your boord
As loud as a perpetuall Gossips feast,
Or a discourse of Fish-wives; and your Bed
As if you were to lodge in Loth-bury
Where they turne brazen Candlestickes.

So, so.


So you are like to finde it.

Gentle wife, have patience, and be quiet, Ile give way;
I never heare thy tongue in this high Key,
But I still thinke of the Tower Ordnance,
Or of the peale of Chambers, that's still fir'd
When my Lord Major takes Barge, I will doe any thing,
Good wife please thy selfe, and I am contented.
Why well then: Might not this time much better
Have bin spent, t' have taught your Daughter rudiments
Of State? her postures, and decorums, fine French Congees,
And quaint out-landish Garbes? one that hath bin
A Courtier in his youth, and brought nought thence?
[Page]Fye, fye; I am asham'd of't.

Looke to the Gate there; me thought I heard one knock.


His Lordship sure?

And comes, it seemes, to see my Ladyship;
I feele state come upon me; speake good Mother,
How shall I beare my selfe?
Why such at first, as you must be hereafter; like a Lady.
Proud, but not too perverse; Coy, not disdainefull;
Strange, but yet not too straight; like one that would,
Were she well woed, but yet not to be won,
Without some formall Court-ship; had it beene
My case, my wench, when I was yong like thee,
Enter Lord Treatwell.
I could have borne it bravely. See, hee's come,
Husband, your Duty; Girle, your modest blush,
Mixt with a kind of strange, but loving welcome;
Were I as young as once: Your Lordship Sir,
Hath done my House much honour.

This the Mistris?


Your Mother sir, that must be.

I make bold,
And like a rude intruder, presse upon you
Sudden, and unawares.

Is this your Lord?

Sir, I desire your more familiar love,
Whom I shall study hereafter to respect
According to your worth and gravity.

You crave his love whose service you Command.

I have seene a Thousand private Gentlemen
Both better fac'd and featur'd.

Mrs. Anne, for so your name was given me.

Nay kisse better,
Besides, he hath the marke of an ill liver,
He hath not a Nose strong enough.
You see sir, what homely entertainement,
And how course our poore House can afford you.
Were it base,
But 'tis much better then I yet deserve,
That face alone would make and dignify't;
[Page]Your Welcome I approve, good sir, a word:
Nay, Master Treatwell, you may witnesse it,
We doe not trade in secrets.

At your service.


Mother, a word I pray.


What sayes my Child?


Which is his Lord-ship?


He that kiss'd you last.

Troth I felt no more honour from his lippes
Than from another man, nay scarce so much;
For Slightall kisses better.

Minion, how?

I tell you as I finde; his Lordship? good now
Tell me, in what place of his body lyes it?
If in the face or foot, the Crowne or Toe,
The Body, arme, or legge, the backe, or bosome,
Without him, or within? I see no more
In him than in another Gentleman.
Part of it lyes in what he left behind,
Observance, state, retinue, and attendance,
Of which you must partake.
Lord, who'de have thought it?
Would he had sent that part of his Lordship hither,
And stay'd himselfe behind; but where's his honour?

Do'st thou not see him there?


Him, but not it.

How cast thou foole? his Nobility lyes in his blood,

'Tis that I faine would see.


His Blood?

Yes, if his Lordship live in that▪
Would you match me to a thing invisible?
Where I bestow my selfe Ile see and feele,
And chuse to my owne liking.

Art thou mad?

So you would make me; this is but a man,
And I can find a man to my owne liking and never trouble him.

This foolish baggage will crosse all we would com­passe.

I am plaine sir;
I have not much to give, yet I would stretch
My utmost, to my poore ability,
To shew my selfe a Father, what she wants
In meanes she hath in Gentry; that my blood
Can witnesse for her: something too besides
Though not sufficient to ennoble her,
Yet still to make her a good Gentlewoman,
And that's all my ambition.

And that's all I can demand.


His Lordship askes no more.

Provided still, all be with her consent,
For Ile force nothing, wer't from a stranger,
Much lesse from my Childe.
There's no condition you have yet propos'd
But warrants grant, they are so reasonable.
Till now I had thought, your Lords, and Noble men
Had bin possess'd of many worthier parts,
Where meaner men are scanted; but I see
All's one, or little difference.
Mistris Anne, it were superfluous to begin a Suite
Which hath before beene entred; and I know
Made knowne to you ere this; I come not now
For motion, but for answer: All those honours
Titles, and Dignities conferr'd on me
We likewise doe communicate with you.

Which she is ready to accept.

Good mother, 'tis me, not you, whom this affaire concernes:
You gave your owne free answer to my Father,
So give me leave to doe where I affect,
The good or bad is mine; not touches you
That are dispos'd already.

My good wench, I doe commend thee for't.


Will you still prate?


No more wife, I have done.


Or I shall but begin. My Lord, proceed.

Court Ladies I have often seene and tryed,
Faire Country Damsels, Virgins of choice beauty,
[Page]Bred from the City Scarlet, and 'mong these
I might have made my choise, but all relinquish'd
To place affection here; what comfort▪ Lady?
Faith little in that name:
Title my Lord, is a cold Bed-fellow,
And many study stile that marry cares;
Can honour helpe in Child-birth? or Nobility
Us priviledge from throwes?

Why no such thing.


What is this honour then?

Why Ceremony;
The gift of Princes, and the pride of States,
Regard in the Weale publicke, and imployment▪
Respect, and duty.
Which from his preheminence
Must by meere consequence redownd to you.
You talke like an old woman, not like one
That should make her first choise, as I must now;
When I am griev'd, can honour cure my heart?
If discontent, can my Nobility
Give ease unto my Corsives? when your Lordship
Is with your Trulls and Concubines abroad,
Where is my loving Husband then at home
To keepe me warme at midnight?

I am hee.


Sir, that's the thing I doubt.


Why, I intreat you?


You are a man?


I am so.


A Lord too?


It is confess'd.

Could you not lend your Lordship to a friend,
And keepe the man your selfe?

To whom I pray?

To a poore Gentleman, one Master Slightall,
Who, had he but that slight Addition,
I gladly would embrace.

You trifle with me.

Therefore to shew me serious, Noble man,
[Page]I take my leave thus gently.
That's no answer; Why Nan, why Minion, good your
Lordship, take nought in ill part; a peevish thing,
God wot, that wants a little tutering.
Slightall quoth a? if she slight all as she hath slighted me,
Shee'le fright hence all her Suters.

This I told you.

Still will you prate? wil't please your honour, take
Such cheere as this our suddainenesse affords?
And there's no question but ere dinner's done
This Tempest will blow over.
Ile take your kindnesse,
Hee's no good Souldier that at first repulse
Will leave the Breach; belike she's fasting now,
Ile take her in full stomacke.
Please you enter?
Attendance for his Lordship.

Act. 2. Scaen. 2.

Enter Ʋsurer, and Scrivener, with writings.

'Tis sign'd, seal'd, and delivered?


As fast as waxe and witnesse can make good.


And to my use?


Yes, and as great an use as e're you lent out mony on.


Is there no hope he will redeeme't at all?

Redeeme this did you say? tush, had he more,
More he would soone send after; why hee's all expence and riot.
I shall love expence and riot while I live;
Not in my selfe, I must confesse, but in such prodigalls
By whom we Usurers profit.

He spends all.

So let him, what he hath;
But this Ile looke to safe as my life.

He minds nor cares for nothing.


For this he minds not, my care is tooke already.


Troth hee's sinking, hee's up to the necke already.


May he drowne for him that holds him by the Chin.

Alas poore sheepe, each Bramble shares his wooll.
[Page]Till hee bee fleec'd quite.
What makes he then 'mongst Bryers? this be his comfort,
His flesh will shew the better when hee's shorne,
Hee'le make sale for the Shambles.

Oh these Dice, Drabbs, and Drinke?

Excellent sokers, brave pills to purge the purse:
But for my part, I will take no such Physicke.

What will you doe, sir?

Marry, first home, and safely locke up these,
Then seeke some other new come to his Lands,
To make like prey on him.
I am your Scrivener, and sir, I hope
You'le not forget my paines?
Forget thee? no, not whilst thy Parchment lasts:
I doe remember thee by thy shop, thy signe,
Yes, thou hast Labells hanging at thy doore;
Thou writ'st a good faire hand, and hast in Horne,
Sixe severall Seales with sundry strange inscripts
All joyn'd together; thee? not remember thee?
I can call thee by thy name.

But sir, my money.

Money from me, thy writings are all paid for,
It came from Slightalls purse.

I, but my Brokage?

Brokage indeed hath some dependance still
On Usury, and Usury on that,
Th'are Relatives; one is not called a Son
That hath no Father, and no Father's he
That hath no Son; yet money doth goe hard.

Yet let me have my due.

Yes, give the Divell that,
For he will have't at length; ha, let me see,
Come, let us once be mad, we'le to the next Taverne,
And there debate the businesse.

At your owne charge?


Yes, for this once, not use't.


A Gallon sir, betwixt us two?

An Usurers Gallon, that's just halfe a pint,
[Page]'Tis none of Slightalls measure, 'tis too great,
And come, good Scrivener, write it in Record,
That I am now thus liberall.

Sir, I shall.


Act 2. Scaen. 3.

Enter Slightall, Roger, and Geffrey.

You have serv'd me long, what have you got by me?

Good Wine, good Victualls, Liveries;
And the countenance of a good Master.

And pray what's all this?


That's as your worship shall be pleased to call it.


Nay, name it you.

So please you sir, I shall;
That which I thinke y'are brought to now your selfe,
Or within little of't.

And what's that?



Thy plaines I commend, thee and thy wit,
That canst give nothing name, such is my state;
Yet out of this confused lumpe of nought,
That which no man of sence can say it is,
Or Title by the name of any thing,
Something I have extracted, and reserved
For you, for you my servants; take this Gold.

All this sir?


Why, all this alas is nothing.


What call you something then?

To me it is not, for now it is yours,
And may it ever after something prove
To you and your succession, as a Stocke
To thrive and prosper by; I onely was,
But am not now; however be you still,
And may this give you Essence.
Pray keepe mine,
Your service sir is all the heritage that I expect from you.
Thou never wast one that did seeke to husband my estate,
Which I have vainely wasted; just, and honest,
In all my loose designes did'st counsell well,
[Page]And still perswadest me to providence,
That thrift of which I was uncapable,
Employ it to thy owne ends; had it bin more,
Greater had bin thy stocke.
Ile keepe it sir, as Steward to your use, but
Alwaies ready to furnish your least wants.

And how for mine?

Though thou wast ever Pander to my lusts,
And gav'st me Spurres to all my vanities,
Fedd'st on my riots, and my loose excesse,
Encourag'st still to surfeits, prayd'st not for me
But still prey'st on me Geffery; yet, because
Thou once did'st claime dependance on my love,
And did'st me some slight service; still report
Thou had'st a bounteous Master; so farewell both.
If this he all, as where no more is left
What more can be expected? this's my portion,
Ile husband't for my selfe; he that gets this,
Or part of this, must have more share in me
Than either man or Master.
Adieu good fellowes, report y'have left a cleane
Gentleman, without or meanes, or mony.

'Tis my sorrow.

And my neglect; so I be stor'd my selfe,
Which hand with him goes forward.
A woman; that inconstant Feminine Sex,
Exit Rog. & Geffry.
That changes humours oftner than the Moone
Waynes, or supplyes his Orbe: that moving Creature
Hath beene my quicke subversion:
Had she prov'd firme; for her I had husbanded
All that I now have lavish'd; but too late,
What shall I now doe! travell? who shall furnish me?
What comfort can there be to beg abroad?
Or make my selfe a storme to forraigne Nations,
After I too much have bin toss'd at home?
Ile prove my kindred; kindred he hath none
That hath not in his purse to ranke with them.
My Kindred wasted, as I spent my meanes,
[Page]Want makes me a meere stranger: then my friends,
There's no such name for him whom need compells
To such extreames as I am newly falne:
Reliefe from them, such as in Cakes of Ice
To him, whose Nerves and Arteries are shrunke up
By bitter winters fury: then behold,
I here expose me to the fate, and force
Of all disasters threaten me; I am ready
With a pinch'd stomacke, and cold Arctos breath,
With a bare breast, armed with patience
Against the sharpest storme, and thin necessity;
T'encounter with the keene and piercing fangs
Of what want can inflict on my poore Carkesse.
Enter Anne
Let Father frowne, or movingly intreat,
My Mother chide, or threaten menaces,
Raile till her Tongue, that yet was never tyr'd,
Cleave to her Roofe in midd'st of her exclaimes:
Let my spruce Lord cogge in his courtly termes,
And woe me with a thousand vaine protests;
Not all my Fathers hate, my Mothers fury,
Nor all his Alphabet of Stiles and Names,
Could they a Sheep-skin fill, shall me divert
From that which I have vow'd, to seeke him out
And prostrate my first love.
The Divell, hee
My mind suggests when all my meanes else faile;
That Bug-beare will supply me.

Have I found thee?

I am not yet provided friend, not yet;
Thou tak'st me on a sudden.

Doe you not love me?

For a She-divell; but I meant not her,
My businesse lyes with him that's Lord and Captaine
Of all the Fiends and fire-brands; haunt me not,
Thou canst doe me no pleasure.

Sure hee's Mad?

There can be no more terrour in his looke
[Page]Than in the face of my extreame distresse:
His Visage cannot be so horrible
As my despaire; what should I feare then, ha?
An Usurer may weare Hornes, a Scrivener too,
Should I be more affraide of his then theirs?
I know no reason for't.

Good sir, take comfort.

Man can no sooner thinke upon the Divell,
But a woman is at's Elbow; trust me not
I've no affaires with thee.
Leave those vaine thoughts
As Fantasies of a distracted braine;
I come with sorrow, and repentant teares;
To bring you backe your owne.
Not possible,
That's all in Hucksters handling, and canst thou
Bring it from thence? why the great Divell himselfe
Can never do't; some is distribued
'Mong Baudes, and Whores; here Panders have a part,
And Cheaters there a share; Tavernes, and Ordinaries:
But the prime part the Usurer hath in's Chest,
I would 'twere in his Belly: and the choise
Of all I had, for which these were reserv'd,
Priz'd by me but as triviall ornaments
T'adorne one Jewell, rated above them,
Higher than gold above the basest drosse,
And that the Lord hath seiz'd.

The Lord? what Lord?

Lord of this Soyle; which I will ne're repurchase
After his so base sullying.

Oh, but sir.

What sayes my Donna Anne, my Lady Serpent
Armed in her golden scales? What sayes Madona?
That I preferre thy basest poverty
Before all glorious Titles; give me eare,
And Ile redeeme thy former injuries
With ample satisfaction.
Heare mee first;
Backe to your Lord, and if you want reparations,
[Page]First fall into his hands.
It was my folly,
My appetite too childish novelty,
Of which I now crave pardon.
Oh woman, woman,
Thou hast undone me, spent me to my Shirt,
Nay beyond that, even almost to my soule;
For I am circled in with blacke despaire,
And know not how to free me.
I can doe't,
And to that end I come; wants thy soule comfort?
Behold, I bring you comfort: Is your state
Decayed and wasted? see, I offer thee
A second making, all my hopes and fortunes,
I throw on thee; I am possest of nothing
Of which thou art not Lord.
Lord? there it goes;
And get thee to him, for in rifling thee
He hath robb'd my braine of sence, my life of meanes,
My soule of solace, and my dayes of rest;
Henceforth Ile be a Mad-man, turne as Savage
As thou to me was't brutish: Ile seeke out
Some fine familiar Divell, and with him
Converse, when I have left mans company;
Ile make my selfe companion with the Night,
And Traffique with her servants like the Owle;
Ile take my Lodging in some hollow Cave,
Till I be growne so out of name and knowledge,
That if I chance but to appeare by day,
Men, Beasts, and Birds shall all stand wondring at me;
As at some progedy, and point at thee
For this my transformation.

Iealousie, oh what a fury art thou?

Fury, where? kept it within my bosom I would cherish it,
And hugg't as one that I accounted most:
Lay't in this hand I'de brandish't 'gainst my starres
And dare them to encounter: lodg'd it here,
Within my eyes, I would out-stare the Divell,
[Page]The Divell, I the Divell.
That foule fiend,
Why doe you name so oft? oh study better thoughts,
And set him at defiance.
Canst not endure his name, yet com'st thy selfe
To tempt me with his Sattin? oh those eyes,
That once appear'd like to those glorious Tapers
That spangle Heaven, shew like blacke funeralls
The Sisters beare, that blast where ere they burne:
Farewell my ruine, my decay and fall,
And what sinister Fate so ere I have.
May thy false pride b'insculpt upon my grave.
Curse on that pride, that such a hopefull Gentleman
Should in his prime be lost by that and me;
But who was cause? who first traduc'd me to't?
My Mother, and that Lord; the sin be theirs:
Offend they, and must scape due punishment?
Then let me loose, what womankind best armes,
My use of Tongue; if but this Pipe hold cleare,
Ile make both curse them taught me first to speake,
And wish I from my Cradle had bin dumbe:
My hate to him shall in his charge and cost,
Redeeme the love that I to this have lost.

Actus Tertius,

Scaene. 1.

Enter old Frier Bernard, and young Frier Iohn.
NOw we have pass'd our more retired houres
To holy uses as our vowes compell;
In zealous and Religious exercises,
In Visitation of the weake and sicke,
To strengthen those that stagger with our prayers,
And ghostly counsell; now night calls us home
Unto our Cloyster, there to spend the rest
Of our late houres in thoughts contemplative,
[Page]And sacred Meditations.
Holy Father, I am affraid time hath prevented us,
'Tis now past Eight, and, but I much mistake,
I heard the warning of the Cloyster Bell,
Which tells us, if we reach not instantly
W'are for this night excluded.

Mercy Heaven how swift time runs?

W'are now at Islington,
What hope have we to get to Crutched Friers
Before the Gates be shut, and the Keyes carried
Up to the Abbots Chamber?

Thou say'st true, how shall we spend the night then?

We'le knocke here
At the next signe, the good man I know well,
Of honest conversation, of good life,
And yet a boone companion; one that loves
Good company, and to be merry with them.
He, if he be at home, will bid us welcome:
My Hostesse too, a sweet and smooth-fac'd wench,
Courteous and kind, and wondrous well belov'd
Of all her Neighbours; liberall to the Church,
And much commended for her Charity.
Let us not bauke her house.

Knocke good Frier Iohn, and begge us a nights lodging.

Enter Woman.

Who's that abroad so late?


For Charity those that would be admitted.


Charity should be in bed at Mid-night.

But Devotion should alwayes wake;
Where's the good man your Husband?
Hee's gone from home, and that's a reason too
We shut up doores thus early; say, what are you?

Frier Bernard, and Frier Iohn.


Religious men, and keepe unlawfull houres?

'Tis no vaine pleasure,
Or evill purpose that hath kept us out,
But Christian zeale to visite and confirme
Them, for his sake to whom our lives are vow'd;
[Page]Grant us reliefe and harbour.
'Twere suspitious for me, but a lone woman, he abroad,
To entertaine men of your ranke and place,
VVhose lusts have all bin question'd, and have drawne
Good women of best rumour and report,
Into foule scandall; therefore pardon me,
This night you get no entrance.
My good Dame,
You see me aged, and farre spent in yeares,
Decrepit, and unfit for dalliance,
And should my youthfull Novice strive t' exceed
His Lawfull bounds, I am neere to counsell him,
But he was never guilty of such thoughts.

'Las my kind Dame, not I.

Then grant us the least shelter, any place,
By or remote, to keepe us from the cold;
Stable, or Barne, if you be so provided,
Or any out Roome where's but hay, or straw
To wrap us in till Morning.

Good, excuse mee.

Can you be so hard-hearted unto men
Of our so knowne Devotion?
Grant us this, and you shall have the assistance of our prayers
In all our Trentalls, Masses, Dirges, Orisons,
Your soule shall be remembred; but if we
Should by your rude remorcelesse cruelty
Miscarry in our persons, in this raw
And so bleake cold; the price of our two lives
Must be of you exacted.
Curse upon them,
No night but this to trouble me in? being ingaged
To better fare by appointment.
Gentle Dame, for reverence of my yeares and gravity,
And for my Covents Order; for my Name
And my profession, grant Frier Bernard this
Harbour from Frost and Snow.
VVell Frier, you shall,
But this provided, I will locke you up
[Page]In a close Garret, and my selfe keepe the Key
To avoid suspition; you shall have fresh straw,
But other Bedding none, no fire nor Candle,
Beere, Ale, nor any such commodity,
Now in my Husbands absence; so, pray enter,
And this I doe for Charity.
Now Heavens Benison fall on thy head, that two
Religious men art so obsequious; gentle Novice, be
Civill and much observant, 'tis a courtesie
We scarce can find else where.
My holy Father,
I know it well; I am prescrib'd my limits,
Which I am willing with all zeale t'observe;
I would we knew our Lodging.
All necessities are ever to bee pardon'd, once, like Horses,
Let's lodge in our owne Litter; I commend
The womans modesty, that is so curious,
Her Husband being from home, to avoyd scandall,
And mens base imputations.
So doe I,
'Tis one of our best Dames; but see, she comes
To give us entertainement
Enter the Woman.
I have onely a Cock-loft, please you gentle Friers,
To make best use of that and some fresh straw,
Best harbour that my Husbands absence yeelds
Y'are welcome to.
We entertaine it gladly,
And thanke you my good Dame, I am for sleepe,
That's this my nights ambition.
Please you enter, but yet no further then Ile locke you in
Ile keepe the Key my selfe.

At your best pleasure.

Enter Constable, with a Bottle of Wine, and Manchets.
My Watch is set, charge given, and all at peace,
But by the burning of the Candle blew,
Which I by chance espyed through the Lanthorne,
[Page]And by the dropping of the Beadles Nose,
I smell a Frost; now to prevent this cold,
To which I am subject, I have made my Deputy,
Given up my staffe and power into his hands;
My selfe intending to spend all this night
Here, at an honest Neighbours; some provision
I have sent in, and some I have brought along,
A cast of Manchets, and a Bottle to
Of the best Wine in Turnball, which, they say
All London cannot better: Silent all,
None stirring neere, Ile knocke but softly for feare
Of waking Neighbours.

Whose there?


'Tis I.


Not Master Constable?


The same faire love.


Have you dispos'd your Watch?


Yes, at you further Corner.

Not too loud, meane time I softly will sneake downe
The Staires, and softly let you in.
Gramercy wench; the kindest loving Neighbour the
Towne yeelds, the Hamlet cannot match her; a smug Lasse,
And one that knowes it too; I would not loose her
For halfe my state in the Parish, while I'me in Office,
She's safe as Mouse in Mill: Oh, are you come?
I was in feare you would have broke with me,
But now I see y'are currant.

Sweet a kisse, and harke in thine eare.

Frier Iohn peepes out above.
Frier Bernard's fast, he snores and sleepes as
Snug as any Pigge in Pease-straw; but my selfe
Cannot once close an eye, which makes me wonder
That I am growe so wakefull.
Here's to thy good fat Pullet that's within,
Two fine Cheat Loaves were sent me from the Court,
A Cup of Nipsitate briske and neate;
The Drawers call it Tickle-braine, 'twill do't,
But is the Roast-meat ready?

Piping hot, Ile goe fetch Salt and Trenchers.


Quicke, good Wench.

Dreame I? or i'st substantiall that I see?
Was this your cunning Dame, to locke us up
[Page]Like Prisoners, and afford us nought but straw
To feather our nests withall? not allow us drinke,
Food, nor a Candle, least we should fire the House,
For that is her excuse; fire on you both,
Have you these trickes? yet God a mercy cranny
That I can spy all this.
She brings in the Pullet.
Now let's be merry, but in any case
Speake not too loud, least we should wake the Friers.

The Friers? what Friers?

Two Abbey Lubbers that are lockt up fast,
Of whom I could not rid me; but I thinke
I have fitted them, they have neither light nor bed,
Nor any other Comfort.
Tush, no matter,
What's that to us? Come sweet, cut up the Pullet,
And after we'le to Bed.

Doe you't, I am no Carver.

Doe you straine curtesies? had I it in fingering
I'de make you both make but a Fridayes feast;
Oh how the steame perfumes my Nostrils.

In faith it shall be thine.


If I begin, may I ne're eate more.


Here's a third would do't, knew hee but how to come by't.

Well, since you'le force me to't,
I will make bold this once.
One knocks at the doore.

If that should be my Husband?


Ha, what then?

You were sham'd, I quite undone; he knockes againe;
Upon my life 'tis he.
What shall become of me?
Doest thou not thinke he'le spare an Officer?
But fall on the Kings Image?

So soone started?


Why Nan, asleepe or dead?


My Husbands voice, who's there?


Where, which way?


Creepe beneath the Bed.


Why do'st not open doore?

Now to convey these victuals hence, and put out the fire,
Lord Husband is it you? who lookt for you so late?
These shall into the Cupboord, if the smell
Betray's not w'are safe.

I, if my swell betray me not.


Why do'st not rise?

I have got such a cold, a cough withall,
I thought I should have dyed; stay but a little
Till I have cast my Petticoate about me,
Ile quickely let you in; the fire's quite out,
No signe of any Feast.

I'me almost starved, prethee make hast.

I am comming, good lye close, and if I can get him
Once to bed, I have a tricke to shift you.

I doe feele I had need of shift already.

Here's brave juggling?
For this night, Constable, I am your Watch;
Oh but the smoaking pullet.
Enter Host, and Hostesse.
Lord Husband that you'le venter whom so late,
So many Knaves abroad?
I feare no robbing, and for my Carkasse, I still beare
About me to defend that, I've travell'd hard to day,
And am very hungry prethee wife see what thou hast in the house?

What, talke of Victuals now? is this a time of night?


I by my faith, for one that could come by't.


Talke not to me, something I must and will have.

Had I knowne
But of your comming home I had provided,
But now I pray to bed, this cold so troubles me.

Cold troubles me, lay me some Faggots on.


You see the fire's quite out.


Ile have't reviv'd.


You're such another man?


See how she stirres?

Would house and all were fir'd,
So some of us were out on't.

I for one.

I would have had some company, I had not
[Page]Such an appetite to be merry for an houre this seven yeare;
That I could tell where to call up some good fellow
That I knew, we would not part these two houres.
Frier Iohn makes a noise in the Garret.

That's my Qu.


Now blesse us wife, what noise is in the Garret?


No hurt man; nay, pray will you to bed?


Bed me no bedds, Ile know the reason of't.

Two Friers shut from their Covents, wanting harbour,
Begg'd lodging with such importunity
They would not be deny'd; at length I pittied them,
And yet to make them sure, I lockt them fast
Up in the Straw-loft, and see, here's the Key,
Th'are fast enough for starting.

Do'st thou know them?


Frier Bernard, and Frier Iohn.

Frier Bernard, and Frier Iohn? th'onely good Ladds
That I desir'd to meet with; I beshrew thee
They had no better welcome; goe, unlocke,
Intreat them hither, we will have one cup
To th'health of all their Covent.

Call them up? what time shall we to bed then?

Time enough, early betimes, nay, quick Nan, Frier Iohn there?
The bonniest Lad e're wore portace in a string,
Or mumbled Masse, or Mattins; I but wish'd
And see, 'tis come to passe; the other to,
Though he be strict of life, yet will sometimes
Be merry, if he like his company;
But my kind honest bald-pate, Frier Iacke,
Enter woman and Friers.
I shall be glad to see him; welcome faith,
With reverence, Father, to your gravity,
Be not offended if Frier Iohn and I
Be, not exceeding compasse, a little merry,
And play with the Pot; fill some in.

To your bellies pots and all.

Excesse, my Host, can purchase no excuse,
But modest mirth, transgressing not his true
And lawfull bounds, is good and commendable;
[Page]Now give us leave to bid you welcome home.
Thankes good Frier Bernard,
Now as I live, would I had some good cheere,
No better then I would pay for; but she tells me
There's nothing to be compass'd.

The worse lucke; and yet I smell a supper.

Not so much as a cantell of Cheese, or crust of bread,
That can this night be come by (for your throates,
Ile rather see you choakt.)

But any fare that would content the stomacke.


Say you so? Ile try what I can doe.


What a leering eye the Frier cast towards the Cupbord?


Bid my Dame provide Cloath, Salt, and Trenchers.


But Frier Iohn, how shall we come by meate?


For such provision trust to my Art.


By Art, can that be done?


Yes, by Art Magicke.

Oh prophane, and fearefull!
Art Magicke! didst thou ever study that?
It is against our Order.

But not as I will order it, feare it not.


Can Frier Iohn Conjure?

For a Supper, or so, but never durst deale further;
Will you furnish a Table fit for meate?

Nan, when I say?


We shall have now some fooling.


What doth my Novice meane?


Good Father peace, no hurt to you nor me.


Nor any heere?

That's furnish'd with a stomacke.
Doemones, et Cacodoemones conjuro vos, surgite et venite.
No man stirre, is the Cloth laid, and all things fit for meat?

You see to please you, we can doe any thing.

Now let me see,
What Christian Climate yeelds us the best bread?
Oh, the best wheat's in Spaine; what say you now
To a couple of Cheat Loves bak'd in Madrid,
And brought into this Chamber?

Would we might see them.

All vostro comando, Ast [...]rothe, il pane in h [...]c camera presto.
Oh, now 'tis done; mine Host, put but your hand
Into that Corner and pull forth two Loaves.

Are you in earnest?


But see what Art can doe.


Pox on the Frier, have you these trickes?


Two fine and delicate Manchets.

The best in Spaine, or Frier Iohn much mistakes:
Place them good mine Host, behind the Salt.

I shall.


There's more behind.


Not possible in Art.

Peace Father, more will be done anon;
What Climate yeelds the best French Grape?
My Spirit whispers Orleance Grape's the best,
What sayes mine Host to a pure Cup of Orleance?

Faith I say, would I might see't.

Ie vou pre Monsieur Asterothe, once more
A Cup of Divine Claret; no, a Bottle of some two quarts▪
Gramercy, thou hast done't, mine Host, but cast your eye
Upon that place, and you shall find it there.

Most admirable, see, here's a Bottle full.


But taste mine Host, and try if it be right.


Your Divells take you; you know where's the best liquor.


Excellent stuffe, I ne're dranke better Clarret.


How comes this?


No hurt to you still, Father.


Bread and Drinke? how shall we come by Meate?

Let me see, there is a Midnight supper now served in
At Prague in Germany, where the Emperours Court
Lyes for the most part, and seldome is he absent;
Among all all other dainties, speake, what dish
Desire you from the Table?

Any thing.

What say you to a Pullet piping hot,
Now standing on the Dresser?

Nothing better.


The Divell take all such smell-feasts.

But once more Ile employ thee, Asterothe,
For this night no more trouble thee. Veni, assiste,
& in hac re succurre; I smell the Pullet
Smoaking, and Sauce unto't.

I, but where?

Somewhere about this Roome, who hath the Key
Of that same Cupboord?

Marry Nan, my Wife.

Call for it, good mine Host,
You see I come neere nothing, use faire play,
Saw neither fire nor candle to provide this,
Toucht neither Locke nor Key within your house,
But was asleepe i'th'straw; unlocke mine Host,
See what the Cupboord yeelds.
A poyson on thee, would it might prove so to thee,
It was never provided for those chopps.
What finde you there?
A hot fat Pullet, newly dress'd and sauc'd.
I never heard the like,

'Tis above wonder.


You see what Art can doe.

Tell me, Frier Iohn?
Ile talke with you anon, in the meane time
Eate while 'tis hot, 't hath come a pretty Iourney,
And marvell 'tis not cold.
Good wine, good bread, good victuals, stomacke good,
And all to meete together? nay fall to,
And he be thank'd that sent it.
This to me appeares beyond imagination,
Nay, gentle Hostesse sit.
Many provide good Cates that tast them not,
Now blessing on their hearts.

But curse on thine, and on thy stomacke too.


I pray Frier Iohn, what spirit doe you deale with?


Aestroth, did you not heare me name him?


And what's hee?

One of the foure great Spirits, that have Dominion
O're the foure quarters of the Earth: good Dame,
Me thinkes you doe not eate.

I could eate thee.

Could you not shew your Divell for a need,
[Page]To one that faine would see him?

In what shape?


Why in his owne.


Oh 'tis too terrible, it would fright us all.


Yet would I see him.

What, in his terrors? he would make you mad,
Distracted and amaz'd, yet, good mine Host,
To give you all content, I could be willing
To shew him but in some familiar shape,
Such as should not affright you.

With all my heart.

Have you no Neighbour whom you best affect, whose
Shape he might assume t'appeare lesse terrible?

Yes, twenty I could name.

Soft, let me pause;
It must be some that still wake at these houres,
We have no power o're sleepers; say I bring him
In person of some Watchman?

No shape better.


Or in the habit of your Constable?


Why hee's my honest Gossip.


Why then his.


More scurvy trickes Frier Iohn, I may live to cry quit­tance with you.

But mine Host, resolve me one thing; should great
Asterothe appeare to you in your Gossips shape,
How would you deale with him?

Why as my friend, my Neighbour, and my Gossip.

No such thing; you must imagine him what he appeares,
An evill spirit, to kicke him, and defie him,
As you would doe the Divell, otherwise
When you are late abroad, and we gone hence,
He'le haunt your house hereafter.
Feare not that,
If kickes and spurnes will drive the Divell hence,
Ile helpe to send him packing.
I must tell you, 'tis meerely for your owne good,
Appeare Asteroth, Asteroth appeare from underneath the bed
In shape of Master Constable; do't when I say't, Not yet?
Excruciabo te Asteroth, in jam jam jam apparebis.
[Page]Now mine Host, either with zeale expell the Divell hence,
Or have your house still haunted.
Will kickes do't?
Let me alone to conjure him, pox on the Divell,
He hath put me in a sweat.
Ile after him▪ and least he should beare downe part
Of the house, Ile let him out of doores.
Yes, doe good Nan; I thinke Frier Iohn
I have bumbasted the Devill; thankes for our Supper,
French wine, and Spanish Loaves, I never tasted meat
That more contented me.

But how came this?

Ile tell you by the way; no questions now:
Now good mine Host we see the night quite spent
And the bright day starre rising in the East;
We'le take our leaves; make much of our good Dame,
And thinke no worse of your good Officer,
Your Gossip and your Neighbour, in whose forme
Asteroth so late appear'd.

Good night Frier Iohn, and holy Father Bernard.


Rather good morrow.

Onely commend us to my Dame your wife,
And thanke her for our Lodging.

Act. 3. Scaen. 2

Enter Lord Skales, Treatwell, Roger, and Geffrey.

My Rivall so dejected?

'Tis most true, you never saw a man so strang debauch't;
He hath not onely run out all his fortune,
But even his sences; I had once my Lord,
Some small dependance on him, but his riot
Hath almost ruin'd me.

And what's thy Suite?


Your Lordships Cloth and countenance.

Thou shalt have't
See, Master Treatwell, that his name b'inrold
Among my other Servants; let my Steward
[Page]Receiye such notice from you.

Sir, I shall.

Preferr'd already? may I live to see thee
Advanc'd some few steps higher, to the Gallowes.

What fellow's that?


One of my fellowes once.


And will he serve?

Yes, one that he did never, nor I thinke ne're will,
Yet a Lord too.

Wil't thou depend on me?

I thanke you, no; were there no other Masters
On the Earth, I am no man for you.

Thy reason friend?

Because the last I had, I lost by you, a Man, that
Save his Title, better'd you, or any of your blood.

Brave my Lord?

Long you to have your Teeth pickt? Ile find time
To talke with you hereafter.

A bold fellow; give him scope, my Lord.

He was a Gentleman descended well,
As ancient as your selfe, as well endow'd
With all the gifts of Nature; better tuter'd,
For he could write true Scholler, which few Lords
In these dayes practise; not ambitious,
Nor yet base thoughted, for he kept the meane,
And aimed but at his equall; you in this
Come short of; for you, lesse noble breasted,
Have stoop'd to your inferiour.

Suffer this?


Nay good my Lord have patience; heare him speake.

Thinke you, you could have better'd him in valour?
He was too full of fire, witnesse his spirit,
Most worthy of a Roman Character;
That being oppress'd, and onely crost in her,
He lost himselfe in all things; and shall I
Serve him, by whom a graft of his faire hope
Is by his Whale-like Title swallow'd up?
And feede at his Boord that hath famish'd him
That was my Master? let such Sycophants doe't,
That to their Lords affections suite their service,
[Page]Not to their fames and honours: that can fawne,
Lye, cogge, and flatter, Pimpe, and Pandarise,
And so farewell, good fellow.

Is he such?

I speake sir of my fellow, he's now none
For he attends your Lordship.
This fellowes bluntnesse
Doth somewhat better than at first,
Whom wilt thou follow now?
Him, to his Grave, or to his better fortunes;
Blesse your Lordship.
I doe not thinke but under that rough brow
Is lodg'd an honest heart; they are best servants
Whom want, penurious neede, and poverty
Cannot fright from their Masters.
Ent. Chan. and his Wife.

Oh Master Changeable, how is't with your Daughter?


Nought, nought.

Peace you, all will be well, I hope; yet peevish, but
It will bring plyantnes: 'tis comming on a pace.

You heare that newes of M. Slightals frenzy, and his un­doing?

And yet your wisedome would have match'd your
Daughter unto that spend-thrift Begger.

This his servant, since entertain'd by me hath told me al.


And nothing more than truth.

Vse you your humours,
And jest at his distresse; but when I thinke
What he hath bin of late, what come to now,
I cannot chuse but sorrow; and the more
When I Record the ground of his distresse;
But my soule's cleare of all.
Enter Anne.

You are a Noble Theife.




You are a gentle foole.




I am as cold as Ice, and you a scold.


Minion. how?


You are a Trencher friend.


That meant by mee?


And thou a slave and Pander.


Speake it not, Ile not beleeve it Mistris.


This Ile prove.


Why Daughter, daughter?


Sure the Girle's growne franticke.


Faith mother a mad wench, I thanke my starres.


Star me no starrs.


Why mother, can you scold?


Yes for a need.


But Mistris Changeable, why did you call me these?

Stand but in row, and as I am a woman
Ile make all this good; you here, you there,
And every one in order: First, in particuler,
And next in generall I will goe over you.

I pray you doe.

A noble Thiefe, that was your Character,
Some by the high way robbe; some are Sea Theeves,
We commonly call'em Pirats; some breake houses,
And others snap at stals; some cunningly
Dive into Pockets, whistlers, others lifts;
Some are Poeticall Theeves, and steale by wit,
One from another plots, and projects, cheates,
And decoyes; but all these under Theeves,
And steale but petty trash: but you more great,
Under pretext of your Nobility,
And countenance in Court, have from a Husband
Stolne a contracted and a married Wife;
For Contract upon Earth, in Heaven is marriage;
And celebrate by Angels.

But why foole?

A gentle foole, such are your patient Husbands,
That yeeld their wives the Breeches.
Is he such? how now bold huswife, baggage, peevish
Thing, rude, disobedient, apish, and perverse,
Irregular, hare brain'd, harsh and obstinate?
You see, she need not put me to my proofe,
Her tongue will do't it selfe.

But Trencher friend?


I pray your name?

Tre. Treatwell.
Take but the two first letters from your name,
I tak't, 'tis Eate-well.

But all this Mistris, makes not me a Pander.

No, but when thou first was't base Baud to the riots
Of thy first Master, thou mad'st thy selfe such.
But now in generall let me see;
The Prince is not without his flatterer,
The Noble man his Secretary,
The Lawyer his Attourney,
The Justice his Clarke,
The Physitoan his Apothecary,
The Usurer his Scrivener,
The Extortioner his Broker,
Nor the Lady cannot be without her Gentleman Usher;
Your Citizens Wife her Iourney-man,
Your Country Wench her Sweet-heart,
Your Tobacco woman her Pipe-maker,
And every Whore her Pander.
Farewell Geffry; God be with you Gentle-folkes.

Oh wife, wife, wife.

Nay good sir spare your teares,
She hath hit us all alike; this her ingeniousnesse
Adds to her beauty, not detracts at all;
I love her nere the worse, nor any here
Whom her discourse hath touch't: 'tis witty frenzy,
And no malicious cancor; so I take it:
Nay grieve not you good woman, whom e're long
I hope to Title Mother; doubt it not, all shall be well.

But eate well.

Let not that sticke in thy stomacke, never could'st thou
Light on a more faire and sweet Godmother,
To give thee a name; Ile have all friends, let's in,
And comfort the sad Gentleman, and after to supper.
Where I'le try how neere of Kin I am to this
Gentleman, and shew my selfe an Eate-well.

Actus Tertius,

Scaene. 1.

Enter Slightall Melancholy.
APistoll, Poniard, Poison, or a Cord,
The least of these would doe't; nay, my owne want
[Page]Had I the patience but to stay,
The time would end me, for since Charity late is dead,
How can beggers live? Death is the easiest
Of any thing on Earth for man to compasse;
Almost no object but doth offer it:
Fire, Water, not a Stone we stumble at;
Our very meat and drinke but surfeit of't,
It would dispatch one quickly: I have read
Of one choak'd with a flye; another drinking,
Strangled with the berry of a bruised grape,
Another with an haire; what's this life then
We men doe make so much of? if a Pin,
A very Haire hath power to take it hence?
Curs'd fall of man, in whose first disobedience
All things on Earth rebell'd, and warre with him:
How many thousand things hath Fate ordain'd
To stop weake natures course? and among them,
How few which can preserve it? which apprehension
Makes me that now I more desire to live,
The more my life's oppos'd: If there be Divills,
As all Religion tells us, I desire
To have converse and conference with some one
The greatest fiend among them, for by him
My Genius prompts me, either I shall raise
My ruin'd hopes, revenge me on my foes,
Or end my wretched dayes in this despaire.
I could turne Sorcerer, Witch, or any thing
Might I but blast her beauty, brave that Lord;
And shew some power o're my ingratefull friends;
The Divell, I, the Divell; what Musicke's this?
Descends it from the Spheares?
Hangs it in the Aire?
Or issues it from Hell? Come where it can
I will attend the Novell.
[Page] Enter an Anticke habited in Parchment Indentures, Bills, Bonds, Waxe Seales, and Pen, and Inkhornes, on his breast writ, I am a Scrivener. Dances a straine, and stands right before him.
Ha? What art thou?
I am a Scrivener.
The Divell thou art.
Enter dauncing another straine, one written o're his breast,
I am a knave.
Stands as the other.
Why point'st thou to thy breast, I am a Knave?
The Proverbe were not true else, for it sayes, The Divell's a Knave.
Enter a third with this word,
I am a Prodigall.
I am am a Prodigall? I was indeed, and thou dost well to
Mocke me; what fury sends Hell next?
Enter a fourth with this,
I am a Begger.
I am a Begger? yes, I am indeed,
But how the Divell cam'st thou by my stile.
Enter a fifth with this,
I am a Puritan.
I am a Puritane? one that will eate no Porke,
Doth use to shut his shop on Saterdayes,
And open them on Sundayes: A Familist;
And one of the Arch limbes of Belzebub,
A Iewish Christian, and a Christian Iew;
Now fire on thy sweet soule.
Enter a sixt with this,
I am a Whore.
I am a Whore? yes, and a hot one too,
And had'st a helping hand in my confusion:
Now the same blessing on thee.
Enter a seventh with money Bagges, and this Motto,
I am an Usurer.
I am an Usurer, Satans eldest Son,
And Heire to all his torments; thou hast swallow'd
Yong heires, and Hell must one day swallow thee.
Enter an eighth with this,
I am a Divell.
I am a Divell? good, 'tis the blacke Lad I so long wish'd to meete.
The Daunce continued, in the conclusion whereof, &c.
The Scrivener beares away the Knave; good Morrall.
The Prodigall the Begger; ever so;
The Familist the Strumpet, not amisse;
Oh but the Usurer still the Divell and all,
[Page]Whom I so faine would speake with; Belzebub,
If thou hast any sufferance here on Earth,
Or limited power o're man, once more appeare
And offer me free language.
Enter the Divell like a Gentleman, with glasse eyes.

Did you call?


Why, what art thou?

The Divell Belzebub, whom thou so late so loud didst invocate

How cam'st thou by this shape of Gentleman?

As if all habits, fashions, and attires
Were not with me familiar? I sometimes
Into a Lawyer can transforme my selfe
To delay Causes; then to a Divine,
To devise new Sects, Scismes, and Heresies:
To a Taylor for new fashions: to a Sempster,
I was first Father for this yellow Sterch,
Which did succeed the blew; to a Feather-maker
For Gentlewomans Fans, mens spriggs, and falls;
Sometimes I am a Page, and daily attend
Upon my Lords luxurious appetites:
Then can I play the Master, Knight, and Lord,
And then coyne strange varieties of riots,
Lusts, and excesses, never heard before.
Indeed, what can I not?

Bee good thou canst not?


It never was my study, and of all things I onely except that.


Thou canst not pray?


Yes, both on soule and body, where I am suffered.


Thou canst not Preach.

How then came all those Pulpit Heresies
That have with Christians, Christians set at odds?
I read to that great Doctor Arius,
That poyson'd three parts of the Christian World;
There's not a Sectary, nor a Scismaticke,
To whom I am not Tutor.

Can I then taske thee in nothing?



Thou canst not — stay?
Thou canst not change affection, nor invert the passions of
The soule; turne hate to love, and love to hate.

Tush, that with ease I can.

And revenge wrongs?

At pleasure.

One thing more, and I conclude;
Thou canst not raise a man of desperate hopes
To a full furnish'd palme; to pay his debts,
And to give freely where he please to distribute?
Am I not Titled Prince of all the World?
And lyes there that in this great Universe
Excepted from my large Dominion?
Am I not Mammon too, the god of gold,
Soveraigne of all Exchequors, treasures, mints,
And those rich Mines that set the World at odds?
In search of which men hazard dangerous Seas,
Expose them to diseases, and strange Climates,
Above their natures: Gold? I am Father of it,
And have it in abundance.
Then from can, I come to will; wilt thou, great
Belzebub, so much of thy huge surplusage make mine
As shall doe all that I have here propos'd?

I will; but on condition.


Make thine owne.

That when thy wishes have attain'd effect,
Thou art full handled, hast paid all thy debts,
And nothing ow'st to any, I may then
Most freely claime thy soule.
Come, strike me lucke; it is a bargaine:
Wee shall neede no witnesse.
Thy conscience is a Thousand, that shall serve;
Let me but have't confirm'd beneath thy hand,
And my Exchequor's open.
'Tis confirm'd; I see the Divell yet hath more honesty
Then hath his Son, the Usurer; for to him
A man may pawne his soule a thousand times
Ere he can get a penny: but the Father's,
Of a farre more free nature.
Come, withdraw, we'le
Have't confirm'd within.

Act 4. Scaen. 2.

Enter Lord Skales, Treatwell, 2. Gentlemen, Geffery, and Mistris Changeable.

But is your house so haunted?




How long hath it bin so?

Ten daies, no more,
Part of that time that Slightall hath bin Mad,
My daughter past her sences.
Gen. 1.

The whole house?

No, onely one by Chamber stands remote,
And in that after Midnight there's a noise,
That troubles the whole house of howlings, shrickes,
Fire-workes and Crackers, as if the great squib-maker
Were new come from beyond Sea.
Gen. 2.

Hath none seene the Vision?

Onely my desperate Husband, who, one night,
Would be so foolish venturous as lodge there,
But did returne so frighted, told such wonders,
Still fright me to remember.
'Tis most strange: sure 'tis some vex'd spirit that hath
Deceas'd of late from out the house: who dyed last in that Chamber?

Heaven rest her soule, my mother.

Perhaps hers; who having hid some treasure in her
Life time must, till that be discovered, walke of force,
The like I have read in Legends.
Gen. 1.
It hath bin common, though not in these dayes
Frequent, might I advise, I would seeke out for some
Religious man to exorcise the Spirit, and by that meanes
To banish thence the vision.

Counsail'd well; there are in towne 4. severall sorts of Friers, white and blacke Friers, Gray Friers and crutched Friers.

Gen. 2.
Good, you call to my remembrance
Among them, one expert in the Art of Necromancy,
His Name Frier Iohn, whom Islington hath
Made famous through London.

Him I saw but now crosse by the doore.

Good Geffrey finde him out, and gently intreat him hither,
But acquaint him not with the cause.

Sir I shall doe't.


But hath he done such strange things?

Gen. 2.
Wondrous sir; he can transhape his spirits, if fame
[Page]Lye not, into what forme he please, to imitate me,
Or personate you; he could produce a Divell
In shape of this good ancient Gentlewoman.

A Divell sir like me?

Gen. 2.
H'hath done't in habite of a Constable,
And may doe't in a Gentlewomans; for his commons
In the Friers he cares not, he can for a need
Conjure his bread from Spaine, from France his wine,
His dyet from the utmost of the Earth,
Thus hath his fame given out.
Gen. 1.

Would we might see him to make proofe of his cunning.

Enter Changeable, and his daughter Anne.
And as I told thee Nan, be swayed by mee,
Ile make him thine, employ my industry,
Counsell and paines, to weane him by degrees
From his wild course of desperate Melancholy:
Ile seeke him out, perswade him, lay thy love
As open as the mid-day: hope in me
And doubt not to prevaile.

Sir, I am yours.

Thou knowest he loves me; I was still his friend,
And friend with friend what cannot he performe?
Make thy selfe mine, Ile crosse thy Mothers workings,
And foole that Lords attempts; onely be you of a more
Temperate humour, and more stay'd, observing but what I
Shall project for you, and doubt not my performance.
You in all things
Have prov'd your selfe a Father: Ile henceforth
Strive to expresse a Daughter.

Then enough.


Here's now my Husband, he can speake it all.

But ere I question that, of you, faire Mistris,
Let me be first resolv'd; is your Braine yet
In a more setled temper?
Sir, it is; me thinkes I am new wakened from a
Dreame, in which I long have slumbering lost my selfe.

And now art found.

I am, thanke Heaven, and my good
Fathers counsell and advice.

I held it wife, a deed of charity, & did it for the Lords sake.


Sir, henceforth I shall observe you better.


You now have wreath'd me with a Crowne of hopes.

Made me againe thy Mother, and this worke,
Your ever patient and obedient wife.
Marry Heaven continue it wife, 'tis but need;
In conscience thou hast bin froward long enough.
These things so well succeeding, pray resolve us
In what forme doth this Divell haunt your house.

A womans sure.


So I told you, sure your Mothers.

Troth she was somewhat shrewish like my wife,
But yet I thinke not hers.

Your reason sir?


This apparition was the full portract of a young beautious Lady.

Gen. 1.

On my life Acadna then.


Acadna? what's Acadna?

Gen. 1.
A harmelesse Spirit fashion'd from the Aire,
And yet assuming substance, shape and forme,
That where she loves, doth all the Offices
Of a faire Lady: can supply with gold.
Gen. 2.

And all things to man usefull.

So I have heard; but this cannot be she,
For this had with her beauty so much terrour,
So much affright and horrour in her lookes,
Such a confused noyse, with hellish sounds
Able to drive the sences retrograde;
Turne reason into madnesse, and invert
Capacity to fury; that, I vow
I would not to be heire of all the World
Endure like night againe.
Enter Geffrey & Frier Iohn.
Gen. 2.

Here comes the Frier, the man can best instruct us.

Haile Gentlemen, this man that stands at Livery
And saith he doth belong to a great Lord.
Hath partly by intreates, part by command,
Enforc'd me from my meditations backe
To know his Lordships pleasure.
Welcome Frier, 'tis told us thou canst exorcise a spirit,
[Page]We have employment for thee.
Expect you such things from religious men,
And of our holy Order?
Gen. 2.
Come, we know you are an Artist in that hidden skill,
And have commerce with mighty Asterothe,
That great Arch Divell.

Now mercy Heaven who hath seduc'd you thus?

Gen. 1.
Come, come we know it,
And this withall; in what men are most expect,
In that they are most dainty, and so you;
In Dauncers and Musitions 'tis found true;
Of all men, where they are most excellent,
They are most curious to expresse their skill,
So no question, you.
Remember Islington, my Host, my Hostesse, and the Constable,
Should we be silent, every Oyster-wife,
Fish-wife, and those cry Milke and Orenges
Can speake of your rare supper; fye, Frier Iohn,
And so dainty to your friends?
Either I must take upon my selfe, and by some tricke evade it,
Or else shame that which I have done before.

Nay gentle Frier.


For reverence of your Order.


As you would purchase us your lasting friends.

Gen. 1.
Or make us at our deaths,
Give Legacies unto your holy Couent.
Gen. 2.

Come, we know what you can doe, good Frier.


What, you make me a Conjurer?


A man of Art, no more; so much we know you are.


Well, what's the businesse?


This Gentleman, you know him.


My good Master.

His house is haunted by a wicked spirit
Which we would have you by your Art remove.

As how?

To lodge one night within the Chamber,
And know of it the cause of its disturbance,
Or what might be the will of the deceass'd,
Which knowne, and being performed, the troubled Ghost
[Page]Might rest in peace.
Lodge where the foule fiend walkes?
A propper jest t'expose me to such danger,
So I might come to justifie the Proverbe,
Where had the Divell the Frier, but where he was;
But I must face it out: Pray Gentlemen, which of you all
Hath seene that Vision? in what shape walkes it?
Like a woman sir, but with such horrour
And astonishment, I tremble once to speake't.
And I to heare't.
What a shee Divell now? for all the World
I would not once affront her; bring me hither
Ten thousand male Fiends, I could charme their tongues
Before one Female fury.

Sure this Frier is wittily conceited?

Had it bin great Belioth, Asteroth, or Belzebub,
I durst affront them, and confront them too,
Oh but the Divells Dam; why against her
There is no Prayer, no Spell, no Exorcisme;
No Circle that can hold her: But appear'd she
Wrinckled in Brow or faire and beautifull?
As lovely to the view as flourishing May,
Clad in the pride of Spring.
So much the worse,
Well wot you that our Order is by Oath
Confin'd from any meeting with that Sex,
Especially at Midnight; and so late;
Scarce in the day-time durst I meet a face
Of such Temptation, but in dead of rest
'Twould scandalize my Order.

Presse him not, if he be so precise.

Heavens Benison and mine light on you till I meet you next;
But to lye there where a she Divell haunts,
(Lesse with my Hostes by at Islington)
May the Grand Divell fetch me, blesse you all.
Tush, Schollers still are Cowards, let him passe,
Daughter, you still are mine?

Else not my owne.

Enough; will any of you Gentlemen,
In that my last: nights lodging second me?

'Tis too full of terrour; Geffrey wilt thou?

Offer my selfe to the Divill before my time?
You might accuse my folly.

Or any heere?

Gen. 1.

Not I.

Gen. 2.

N or I.

It shall be then my care to finde out one
To conjure downe this spirit, and doubt it not.
So much for that: But Mistris, what from me,
Except you to expresse my gratitude
For this so late a favour?
Onely this; t'avoyd all imputation fame may cast
Upon my honour touching Slightalls fall,
In which the World may thinke I had chiefe hand:
'Tis but to find him out, and on his poverty
Bestow some small reliefe.
Now as I live, Ile doe't with a full and
Plentious hand if that be all.
Ile aide him in the search to make
That sweet conclusion.
In the meane time't shall be my providence
To have my house unhaunted; come my Lord,
Leade you the way, my wife and I will follow.
Remember Nan.

Act. 4. Scaen. 3.

Enter Roger.
Want whil'st I have, or heare my pockets chide?
While his are silent? there's no justice in't:
And if he doe while my Exchequor lasts,
May I be held a Proverbe made to cast
In every false Groomes teeth?

Is this the day?


It is.


Art sure?

Upon my—

What? thy faith?


Upon my Eares 'tis true.

I will not trust to heare-say, let thine eyes
Proclaime what's written in this Almanack,
If this be the set Day.

Quindecem Michaelis, certainely the same.

If't be not tendred then 'twixt Sun and Sun,
The Morgage is my owne.

If you have the conscience to take the forfeit.

Conscience? what in that is wanting he shall find
Made good in Law.
Enter Slightall Gallant, and his Page with Mony-baggs.
I see the Divell yet is good to some,
Though it repents me of the Bargaine seal'd,
Yet am I glad and proud of my supply;
Which the more precious is, being infinite,
Not capable of end; for Mammons treasure,
A prodigall hand may wast, but ne're consume.
What sudden change is this? doe my eyes mock me,
Or must I call him Master?
Roger? a hand; I know thou art in want, as one some
Weekes that hath bin out of service, take that gold
And spend it freely, when thou want'st here's more.

And you are both in cash and sence likewise?

Why man, 'tis want of mony makes men mad,
For that disease here's Physicke: honest Hodge,
Goe thou and summon all my Creditors,
Leave not a man to whom I owe, uncall'd,
And pay them to the utmost they demand;
Be so farre from bating of the Principall,
As pay them all arrerages; 'tis our will
And doe thou see't perform'd.

From whence came this sir?

What's that to thee? have we not here to doe't?
Those Debts that reckoned were meere desperate
First see discharg'd, unlesse some certaine Morgage tyed to a day.

What Schreich-owles voice was that?

Monsieur Damnation? what, are you so neere?
I know you sir, a Thousand pounds and th'use,
Tender the summe, there's gold, and bring me backe
The Morgage of my Mannour.
I'me undone then: no hast good
Master Slightall, why to morrrow,
Or the next day will serve, some fortnight hence,
Nay, were't a moneth, I could forbeare the money.
Quindecem Michaelis, you remember that,
I prethee see this man first satisfied,
And doe't without delay: if he deny
The tender of't Ile have it done in Court;
With such we must not dally, quicke, good Hodge:
That once dispach'd, affaires of greater consequence
Attend thy trust and care.

Come, will you walke sir?

If needs I will, we Usurers are like women
Who conceive with great pleasure, and are delivered
With great paine; so we get our wealth with infinite joy▪
And part with the least of it with infinite torment.
To any man that can but shew my hand,
Or witnesse where I have but pass'd my word,
Pay ready downe, about it, and returne.
And have we liv'd to see the golden age once more?
Now Geffrey, if I meete you I dare affront you boldly.
Exeunt. Manet Slightall.
How want dejects, and plenty cherishes?
What a new change perceive I in my selfe?
Yet not so much in habite as in heart!
The sight of gold hath shooke off all those dumps,
Whose Leaden weights were hung upon my soule,
To keepe it downe from mounting; and I now
Finde in my selfe a free and dexterous spirit,
Uncapeable of cloudy Melancholy.
Ent. Lo. Treatwell, & Geffery.
I must, as did my Mistris late enjoyne,
Passe in the search of this sad Gentleman, and to
His low dejected poverty cast some few peeces.
If his pockets lining suite but to the out-side
Of his Cloaths, he hath small need of them.

What, growne so brave? he hath sure lighted on some cheate?

'Twas her injunction, and doubtlesse
Ile accost him; save you sir.

I would be so, but 'tis not you can doe't.


I understood that you were late in want?

Not of a Wife; but for your Lord ships curtesie
I had had one too many, thanke you for it.

I came to seeke you.

For another? no,
Now much good doe't you with the thing you have,
[Page]I have no more to part with.
Leaving that; I understand you are a Gentleman
Nobly derived; but withall, y'are poore.

You will not sell your Lordship?


Who should buy't?

Why he that askes the question, I, my Lord;
If you will walke by Land I'me your first man,
Ile bid as faire as any.

He's mad still, leave him.

A Bankerupt idle fellow brave your Lordship?
Beate him to's wits, or let me kicke him for you.
Ha, what's that? who, Geffery Codpeice, Iohn Boe Peepe,
Is't you that prate so freely? my young Iudas,
Have you conspir'd against me?

Endure this?

Stay, first we will debate in friendly tearmes,
Before you grow to out-rage.
Done most Lordly; your tongue will grace you
Better than your Sword, 'tis the most Noble fashion.
I'le be briefe, I understood your state was much
Decay'd, which in my honour I commiserating,
My purpose was in some sort to relieve you;
And would you better understand your selfe,
It might appeare a noble courtesie.
Because it came so free and uncompell'd
Such as one Neighbour to another doth
To get his wife with Child, a courtesie, and so it fitly may
Be call'd because it brings him to his Knees.
Still, still misprision; might I advise you, proffer
What you purpose, and if refus'd, so leave him.

Counsail'd well: there's twenty pieces for you.

For a wife? Her Ladyship is yours for nought already,
And should I sell her twice?
This saucy fellow usurpes upon our patience,
Which we'le punish be our strong hand.

A punisher, my Lord? what beg the Beadles Office?


Dash out's braines.


I doubt his Lord ships warrant is not currant, therefore Ile not obey.

As they strive to oppresse him, Ent. Rog. They 2. beate of the other 3.
Sir, all's dispatcht, but by my faith I lye,
Here's something here to doe.
Why God a mercy Master, I perceive
[Page]Your spirits not all spent.

Thankes to thy Sword, or I had bin oppress'd else.


But how differ'd you? to be assail'd by such a shamefull odds.

They scoff'd at my supposed poverty,
And my great Lord forsooth, as I had begg'd,
Would have bestowed his guerdon on my want,
Which taking in foule scorne, the valiant sir
Assail'd me at these base advantages:
But hast thou done as I enjoyn'd?

Most carefully; all's to the full dispatch'd.

If with the Divell▪ I could dispence as well,
I should have ease within.
Ha, sirra Geffrey, I
Thinke you plaid at leape Frog?

You are sad sir?

Enter the Divell, and claps Slightall on the shoulder.
Doe not demand thy debt before the day;
Thy forfeit is not due yet.
No such thing; the businesse that I come to treat with thee
Is of another nature.

Sir, what's he?

To hot for thy acquaintance, doe not aske,
Attend me to my Chamber, whether anon, I will not faile to come.
Too hot, and why? he may be honest, but he hath the
Countenance of an old subtle knave; well, Ile attend you.

Now what to me?


Have I not kept my word?


Thou hast.

Stor'd thee with all the suppliments
Mans use can aske.

It cannot be deny'd.

Nay, was not I assistant in this quarrell, prompting thy
Man to come to thy release, just at the instant danger:

His approach was fortunate and happy.

Then speake freely,
Did'st ever in thy life time meete a friend,
Whose word, assured trust, and constancy
Could ranke with mine in all things?

Never any; but what may this inferre?


Proofe of thy gratitude, or to be term'd unthankefull.


Speake wherein.

Wilt thou in meere

Requitall of so many, doe to me one faire Office?


First propose it, and then expect an answer.

There's a house haunted with a she spirit, one of my
Servants, and Kitchin maides in Hell, employ'd by me
For some knowne causes, who hath play'd such prankes there
[Page]No man's so bold dares lodge within the roome,
This bed would I have thee to undertake.

To send me to Hell before my day? your plot is too apparant.

Still amisse; have not I power o're al my creatures there
To limit and command them? art not thou
One of our house by Indenture? though to them
Shee appear'd gastly, horrid, and deform'd,
To thee she shall seeme faire and beautifull,
No whit inferiour to that Graecian Queene,
That launcht 1 [...]000. Ships from Aulis Gulfe,
And brought them to the fatall siege of Troy.

Make but this good, Ile do't.

And so confirme thee
A Minyon to the mighty Belzebub,
And great in our blacke Kingdome.

Actus Quintus,

Scaene. 1.

Enter Lord, Changables Wife, and Geffrey.

BUt was he so perverse and peremptory?

He brav'd necessity, and outfac'd want,
And tooke my proffer'd largesse in such scorne,
As he had bin some great Kings Treasurer;
My bounty he defy'd with shaking pockets,
The noise whereof deafned and seem'd to drowne
The sound of my despised Charity;
Some pieces I would willingly have given.

Which would he not receive?

Meerely refus'd,
And with a haughty and contemplative smile,
Instead of gratefull thankes, proudly demanded if I would
Sell my Lordship.

Did you suffer it?

While I could limit patience I forbore,
To chastise him with an ungentle hand;
But when I found no bounds in his distast,
But that it still exceeded Law and compasse,
I thought to chastise his ingratitude;
And did it with my Sword.

'Twas bravely done.

I thinke we made him fly, for I am sure some there
Gave shamefull ground.
But leaving that,
[Page]How doth my Daughter relish you of late?
Doe you not finde her comming?
Affible, as any courteous maid alive can be,
To whom I did discover these proceedings,
Which she seem'd well to relish.
Doubt not then, all will be to our wishes;
One thing onely, which sadds me when I thinke of't.

Pray what's that?

To thinke my house should be so strangely troubled
In dead of Night.

It is prodigious sure.

And that I feare it is my Mothers Spirit,
Who for some unknowne causes restlesse walkes,
As one not sleeping in her quiet grave;
'Tis this that moves me deepely.
I have sent
To one Frier Bernand, a Religious man,
And Tutor to Frier Iohn, to learne from him the depth of
This concealement; and see, in happy time
Treatwell's return'd
Ent Treatwell.

Sir, I had conference with him.


Will he do't?

By no entreaty or perswasive skill,
Nay were he press'd by menace or command,
He vowes to have no hand in these designes;
I could not make him thinke such things can be;
He counts them meere impostures, falacyes,
Or, let a man receive them at the best,
Illusions of the Divell; that Ghosts walke
He saith directly 'tis impossible,
And in that faith he'le dye; further discourse
I could by no meanes get him listen to, but halfe displeas'd he left me.
That's his faith, but we are froc'd to credit
Otherwise by lamentable proofe.
Ent. M. Changeable.
Here comes your husband, he hath perhaps some newes
I have bin labouring, toyling and moyling,
To finde the cause of this so strange distemperature,
Question'd Divines, and talkt with cunning men,
With Fortune-tellers, skill'd in Palmistry,
Not a tain'd Gipsey can escape my search, but I with such
Have Trafficke.

And what comfort?

Troth small, or none yet, most in this conclude,
That pretend Iudgement; that till we finde some one
[Page]To lodge without companion in that Bed,
And in the dead of darkenesse question it,
Why, to what end, and for what cause it walkes,
The Vision shall continue: this they said,
But none amongst them all so resolute as to
Attempt th'adventure.

Then 'tis desperate?

Not so; for comming from the Friery late,
I met a man by chance that cross'd my way,
Whom rather too much spirit had possess'd,
Or too much folly made meere desperate;
Would willingly attempt it, and indeed
He did intreat it of me as a Suite.

What reason mov'd him to't?

Because he's mad:
For who of understanding, or of sence,
Would willingly confront great Belzebub,
Perhaps despaire, distraction, discontent
Or fury hath possest him; be't what will,
VVhat's that to us? his is the certaine danger,
Ours the assured gaine.

What might he be?

One like enough, were Hurcules alive,
With him in Thesius stead to enter Hell;
A mad companion whom you all well know,
One that was once a Suter to my Daughter.

Not Slightall?




My Rivall?


Even the same.

Of all men living I am loath that he should lodge
Beneath my Roofe; were there none such he'de play the
Divell himselfe.
But wee have those
Within, can tame him were he twice so wild.
But he to be receiv'd? of all men living
I doe not love that fellow.
See your errour,
What better way, more secret, and more safe
Can we devise to be reveng'd, than this?
To have him peece-meale torne by Haggs and Fiends;
He hath no prayer to arme him 'gainst their assault,
His Oathes will be assistant to their fury,
And further not repell it: You by this
Are from a Rivall freed; my daughter Nan,
From an importunate Suter, Begger too;
We all from a disturber, and a man
That wrong'd our common quiet.
He sayes true sir,
[Page]Let all your anger then conclude in this,
And bid the Divell take him.

A good riddance.

I know not how you could dispose him better
And empty all your wishes.
Well, I am pleas'd,
Employ your best discretions.

But where's Nan?

Sicke in her Chamber, where she keepes her Bed,
And dares not thence remove.
The worse for her,
Yet for our purpose better, as it happes,
Because she shall not see him, nor he her;
Harke, there's one knocks, 'tis Slightall on my life;
Disperse I doe entreat, Ile answer him.
Where's this Three-headed Dog that keeps Hell gates?
He knockes that faine would enter.
'Tis the same,
I know him by his roaring.
Enter Slightall.
If this, as many men give out, be Hell,
Shew me the Master? he that keepes the house:
Pluto that great grim sir.
I am the Lord
Of this poore Mannour; now, I cannot tell
By what hard Fate distress'd.
Oh, you keepe lodgings,
And as I understand, the Divell here hath late tooke up his Inne.

My greater griefe sir.

I would for one night be his Chamber-fellow,
Shall I have entertainment, good mine Host?

I would not wish you sir.

Wish me no wishes,
I am the Knight adventurer that would doe't:
One thing resolve me; hath the Divell your Guest
A Horse in the Stable?

None sir, I assure you.

Then make him pay for's Bed; it is the custome
Of every Inne through England.
Sir, I know you,
And ever wish'd you to your hearts desire,
How well you may remember; if forgot,
In you 'tis errour, and no fault in me.
Which love I thus have studied to requite,
To conjure hence your Divell; how appeares it?
In Feminine shape?

Yes, like a womans sure.

But not like Madam Proserpine your wife?
No shape else can affright me.
I must confesse
A Divell of her tongue, but no way else sir.

Shew me my Chamber.




My lodging.

Command me two faire Tapers, that may last
[Page]And burne out this nights hell.


Those, my good sword, this Booke, and my bold heart
Are Guards sufficient 'gainst a thousand shadowes
Of no Corporeall essence capable.

Here be your Lights.

Some wine too, I entreat,
'Tis the best armour to a fainting soule,
And then no further trouble.

It shall be done.

Whom am I to encounter? singly too?
Without a second? spirits, or Fantasmes?
Ghosts being, or imaginary dreames?
Not in the comfortable day, and view
Of judging eyes, but in the solitude
Of melancholy darkanesse? Ile not thinke of't, before
I find the truth, or mockery.
Ent. with Wine, Chan.

I have brought your Livery.

Indeed I must thank you for't? indeed I am your man; now, if you please,
Leave me to my adventure.
Rest may your Body,
And peace possesse your thoughts.
What e're betide me.
Good night to you: see the doores lockt and bolted,
That's all I shall enjoyne you; till we meete
A faire and prosperous Morning: did I know
What object I should meet with, I could then
Fit me unto the plunge accordingly,
And arme me for the Grapple; but of this
I nothing can conjecture: oh but that Parchment
By which I am oblig'd to pay a soule,
The memory of that is horrible,
And strikes me with affright: what can I ghesse,
But that this is my divells Stratagem,
To have his Serjeant death arrest me heere;
And beare me to that cursed Dungeon, Hell?
An Usurer would doe't; any fat Serjeant
That lookes as plumpe in cheekes as th'other leane;
Then why not these? their gaine's but petty trash,
But these the precious riches of a soule;
Yet in these Hell-hounds have I greater trust
Than in those Doggs of th'Earth, for I am sure
The Divell himselfe can be no Usurer,
He is so free of his purse; and hitherto
Hath lent his money gratis: Ile to Bed,
[Page]And yet I will not; I'me no whit dismay'd,
Nor yet at peace within; disquieted
With sudden feares, nor yet well reconcil'd:
Ile try if I can sleepe; and yet not so,
Lest I be taken napping; yet Ile throw me
Upon the Bed and reade.
Ent. Divells dauncing, with Fire wokes, and Crackers.
Hey, hey, the Divells daunce, sure Hell's broke loose?
And this is their Shrove Tuesday; hornes upon you,
And that's the Cuckolds curse; yet this was sport,
Though somewhat fearefull: had they proffer'd violence,
This should have thrash'd among them, but it seemes
These were no quarreling spirits; yet howsoe're,
I am glad they are gone: what object shall be next?
Musicke? yet this sounds sweeter than the first,
For that was all of discords.
Ent. two Maides with Banquet and Lights; after courtesies to him, they fetch in Anne, and place her at the Table against him.
What, in Hell are there white Divells, Angels are
These of Light, or but light Angels? Banquet too?
And Feast? the furies in the lower World
I thought till now had fed on hot meates all;
On parboyl'd Murtherers, Usurers roasted flesh,
Whores cheekes for dainties, Carbonado'd o're
Red sulphurous Gridions, and a thousand such:
But what's she enters now? to whom the rest
Doe such obeysance? place her in her State,
As if she were the Queene grim Pluto stole,
And great Alcides once redeem'd from Hell?
Be'st thou Ghost, shadow, Fuery, Fiend, or Hag,
Introth thou art a faire one; In Heavens name
What art thou? speake, do'st answer me in smiles?
Why do'st thou beckon me? point to those shadowes,
As were the meates essentiall! had I a stomacke,
With thee I durst not eate: do'st laugh at me?
Oh hadst thou but a substance to that presence
I'de dare on thee, wert thou th' infirnall Dam.
Temptation still? Ile thinke her what she seemes,
For no affright can lodge in her faire looke,
And venture somewhat neere; she's left alone,
[Page]And single; I will to her, what would you have me
Sit there? I will; eate? but begin Ile do't:
Faine would I take her by the hand, but feare
Hers rather would melt mine, than melt in mine:
Why should my sence of touching thus turne Coward?
My eyes being so valiant, can you speake?
Oh such a wife through all the world I'de wish,
That would be ever Tongue-ty'd; reach your hand?
I would and gladly too; s'foot I will venture,
No danger, a white, soft, and delicate palme,
That nigh dissolves in touching: you feele well,
Sweet, can you kisse? most sweet and excellent;
Againe, againe; were there no worse in Hell,
And this the place, here would I wish to dwell.
Nay you that can both touch and lip it too,
Sure can doe something else: be'st thou a Lamia,
Or Incubus, thou canst not scape me so;
I have a spirit in me great as thine:
Th'hast boorded it, Ile see if thou [...]anst Bed,
And try if thou hast mettle to thy shape;
Dumbe spirits cannot clamour out for helpe,
Ile now try Masteries.
Thundering and howling, Ent. Chan. like the Divell

Thinke upon thy Bond.


Ha? when is't due?



Hellish Fiend thou lyest;
But ere thou claim'st that debt, shew me that beauty
I am so much entranc'd with.

'Tis vanisht into Aire, whence it was form'd.


Great Belzebub, yet once more let me see't.

Not possible, untill you meet in Hell; so neere
Thy Fate, and cannot now the terrour of that place
Coole thy hot courage? see the forfeiture,
And here I doe arrest thee.
Angels bale mee,
Or I am ever lost.

Canst thou deny thy deed?

That hand I cannot, yet be not Judge and
Accuser too; Ile put my cause to censure.

Who shall doe't.


The next we meete.

I am content, 'tis done; how ere thy soule
I'me confident is won.

Act. 5. Scaen. 2.

Enter Usurer, and Scrivener.
Oh, curse on that supply that snatcht from me
So rich a Morgage.
You look'd not in the Almanack
For good and evill dayes.
Yes, but too late:
For when 'twas past, I counsail'd with the day.

And pray what was the Motto.


Ghesse I pray thee.

Alas poore man, all to no purpose, be better advis'd,
Or it may be, kept out of his clutches; these, if we may
Beleeve th'Astronomer, are omenous dayes.

Tush, none of these.


What then?


Nihil in Bag.

Nihil in Bag? a scurvy criticall Embleme,
Presaging empty pockets, Why no Cutpurse
Will trade when that's in power; then why would you
Lend money in that unlucky houre?
It shall be a warning to me: in th'meane time
Would it were raz'd out of the Kalender quite,
It is a day prodigious.
Enter Changeable and Slightall.
If I can prove that all thy debts be paid
Thou art my owne, was't not, and speake thy conscience,
Our joynt condition?

I confesse it was.

That Usurer's one of thy maine Creditors,
But when thou wast so free to pay thy debts, thou ne're
Dream'st of thy forfeit; propose to him thy question.
And I will, I bid thee that thy money
Ne're shall doe, save thee.
Beshrow you sir, you made me start,
What is your will with me?
I speake to thee
As to the Drawer at the Vintners Barre:
What is all paid?
And like the Bar-boy I
When you bring ready mony, and keepe touch
All's pay'd sir, and y'are welcome.

'Tis confess'd.


What's he that lookes so gastly?


'Tis the Divell.


My Pen and Inkhorne blesse me.

All those crosses that I have figur'd on the
Princes Coyne, stand still betwixt me and danger,
Exeunt Vsu. and Scri.
These are discharg'd, what refuge hast thou now?
Nay bring me unto all thy Creditors;
Ile prove thy debts discharg'd.
I pray how many
[Page]Of our best London Gallants that hope Heaven,
Can say the like? merit I Hell for that?

But I must have my bargaine.


Two words to't.

Enter two Gentlemen.

Hast thou not ow'd to these?


Most true, I have.

Resolve me friends, as you are Gentlemen,
In what knowne summes did this man stand ingag'd to
Each of you?
Gen. 1.
I know not why you aske sir,
But the time was he ought me some few peeces,
I thought them desperate once, but nobly, since
He to the full hath seene me satisfied.
Gen. 2.
I never met with a more generous debtor,
I onely trusted him with some few summes,
And he hath paid me use and principall,
A thing I ne're expected.
That's all Gentlemen—morow
Gen. 1.
The like to you; I wonder what the Divell
Slightall ayles, he lookes so strangely on us?
Gen. 2.

Sparkes no doubt, of his first madnesse.


Doe but name the man, to whom thou canst appeale.

I must confesse I'me gone by th'common Law,
The Chancery too, because of thee, my conscience,
If to any, I appeale to the Church.

And to whom there?


To any reverent Father.

Ent. Frier. Ber. and Frier Iohn.

Then to these, to both, or either, freely take thy choice.

Holy Frier Bernard then, my parting breath
Could not desire a better confessor.

Reade there, and tell me what thou think'st of that.

Give me but leave to take my second eyes,
I will resolve you presently.

In th'interim, what's the best newes in the parish?


Where I live?



Ile tell thee all I know,
We are better to the Suburbes than they planted
Within the City; thereon holy dayes
The taverne doores are ever shut till sixe,
Else is the Vintner fin'd; but there where wee
Keepe rendevous may be let in at three, and never stir
The Informers.

Horrible; what tremour this begets?


Is that the Divell?


So this Indenture speakes.

Ten thousand Creeds, as many Pater-nosters,
Ave Maries stand betweene me and harme.
In these conditions, I like a cunning Lawyer find a
Clause to cheate the Divell, and to save a soule;
Be'st thou the greatest fell with Lucifer,
Nay he himselfe, I now am arm'd for thee: what claim'st
Thou of this man?

I claime a soule.


Which is not forfeit.


Shew me reasons why.

By helpe of Heaven I shall: this deede thus runs;
When all his Creditors are satisfied,
His Bonds discharg'd and cancell'd, debts full paid,
His Morgages call'd in, his words redeem'd,
This Bond is then in vertue; not till then.
All this I grant, and call to witnesse none
Save his owne Conscience; art thou not at freedome,
And cleare from all the world?
Most true, I am,
Nor can I name that party under Heaven
To whom I owe one farthing; a brasse token
Will cancell all my scores.

'Tis a plaine case.


Yes, but against the Divell.


Speake, how that?


What were the summes for which he stood ingag'd?

Some fifteene thousand pounds, which I have pay'd,
And now the man owes nothing; therefore duely I
Claime both soule and body.
Both are quit,
As thou thy selfe shalt to thy griefe confesse;
For I will prove him more indebted now
Than e're he was before.

To whom?

To thee,
Whom till he have discharg'd the utmost penny,
The Bond's of no effect.

And am I tripp'd?

The Divell hath bragg'd he hath caught many a Frier,
Now one hath caught the Divell.

Am I cleare then?

Yes, till thou pay'st him all his money downe,
Which when thou doest th'art worthy to be damn'd.
Insert but that condition'mongst the rest,
And I'le againe subscribe; Gramercy Frier.
Nay then I see vainely we Divells stand against the
Church, they have still the upper hand,
I yeeld me vanquish'd; in the meame time Frier read
And conceale.
Gives him another paper to reade.
What, by a quid d it freed? by a quirke in the Law? by
This I see the Divell's no good Lawyer: give me my deed,
That I may see it cancell'd and undone:
[Page]Ile teare it small as Atomes, that no memory
Of the least Letter be reserv'd as witnesse
Against my soule when I shall resurvive;
Nor shall I be at patience till I see
This Parchment ashes, and this horrid Writ
Dissolv'd to smoake and aire.
Yet for my love,
For all the good thou hast receiv'd by me,
For all my cost and charges, large expence,
As I acquit thee truely, so thou freely
Lend me thine eare.
Thy bounty hath deserv'd it▪
To save a soule I know no Scrivener here
That would not onely lend but give an eare.
I am inform'd to th'full; if this be true,
Divell, th' art honest, and shalt have thy due:
Associate me Frier Iohn.
With all my heart,
If this be Asteroth I so late invoakt, I never shall desire
His company, but on an empty stomacke.
Ex. Friers.

And shall I meet her there?


Presume thou shalt.


The selfe same spirit?

And enjoy her to:
Doe thou but hazard as thou did'st before
And doubt not, she's thine owne.



As a contracted Bride and Bed-fellow.


No difference in her shape and ornament?



Thou canst doe much with me, nor doe I
Know beyond what bounds thy credence to extend: thou
May'st prove false, but th'hast bin yet my friend.
Exeunt all.

Act. 5. Scaen. 3.

Enter Anne in Bed, Mistris Changeable, Lord Skales, Treatwell and Geffery.

Run for the Doctor Geffery.

Let him stay,
Deaths Image cannot shew so gastly to me
As would the shape of Doctor, Ile have none.

Nay sweet Nan be perswaded.

If he come
Good faith Ile live no longer.
Sooth her up,
Or she will grow to frenzy.

How doth my sweet heart?

Sicke, oh sicke at heart, and you keepe such a buzzing
In my eares, that I can take no rest;
Would you would leave mee.

See here's my Lord.

From whom, if't
Be his will, the Lord deliver me.

The maid talkes idly.


What would my honey have?

Your absence,
[Page]Mother, and yours, and all of you; I am but dead
Unlesse you give me rest; oh sicke, sicke, sicke,
Your tongues like untun'd Bells, sound in my eares,
Nothing but Grave and Church-yard.
Whom wilt have
To watch with thee all night?
None but my Father,
All tongues are noise and discords saving his;
But his like charming Musicke, quietly
Summons my eyes to rest; and could I sleepe once
I hope I should be better, oh.

'Tis best to humour her.

I shall disclaime all friendship with that tongue
That speakes another sillable; this prating
It strikes quite through my head, and makes it beate
As it would fall in peeces.

Silence all.


Mother, you talke of silence, and yet speake; how can that be?



if you were sicke at heart as I, you'de
Say mum were a word, Mum sounds to me, being sicke,
Loud as a Cannon; why so? I thanke you all, indeed you
Doe me now a wondrous kindnesse; I pray, pray for me, I
shall be well at midnight, well at heart;
And at head too I hope: and Mother, nay reply not,
I'me like the man that could endure no noise
In'th silent woman, answer all in signes;
Mother I hope ere morning I shall find
Some more hearts ease; remember when you see't,
I told you of't before hand: I would sleepe:
Hand in my bed, Ile turne to the wall, and try if I can
Sleepe, so good night all.
The Bed pull'd in
So, softly as you can; some little rest
Will bring her to her temper, for this night
We will commit her to her Fathers charge, since she so
Much desires it.

Any thing to give her least content.

Enter old Changeable and Roger.
Thou knowst my mind, what thou hast undertooke
Mannage with good discretion.
'Tis as safe
Here in my breast as under bolts and lockes,
The cunning'st pick-locke tongue that ever spake
Shall turne these springs to ope them; farewell sir.
Farewell good Roger, but no word to' your Master
Of what I have reveal'd thee kept from him.
As I would doe a kindnesse, lay't in me,
[Page]From my old fellow Geffery.
Now my Lord; I am still labouring for the generall
Good, to have my house at peace, and you content;
But Wife, how is't with Nan?
Sir, wondrous ill,
She will endure no counsell, physicke, language,
All tongues are clamour to her, saving yours,
Harsh as a blacke Sant, or a grating Wheele;
And I much feare without some providence, she scarce
Will live till morning.

'Las poore Girle.

But she entreats in midd'st of all extreames
That you would take the paines to watch with her,
No other she'le endure.
And sir, I'le doe't,
No other tongue this night shall trouble her, nor presence
Save my owne; shall I entreate your Lordship, you good
Wife, and those you thinke best to associate you,
To stand in sight of all such Apparitions
As shall in this roome be made visible?
My life shall for your safety be [...]ngag'd, in it can be no

What assurance can you produce for that?

The word and faith of some approv'd religious,
Who have promis'd, at my great intercession, that this
Night shall be the last of all my progidies
That thus afflict my house.

I am but one and I my selfe will venture.

And I.
I do not think wife but there will be visions
Worthy both sight and observation to;
What will you say if Slightall be this night
Contract to a she fury? but no words,
Ile not tell you all I know; he's past his sence
And apt for any stratagem of Hell: I am promis'd
Much faire hope; will you ascend and guide my Lord to a
Convenient place, where you may view this object?

In th'meane time, how will you dispose your selfe?

To watch with Nan,
And in her great dispaire to comfort her;
Nought but the dangerous sicknesse of my Girle
Could keepe me from you, but the houre drawes on,
Which Ghosts ever are tyed to.
Mauger spirits, Ile
Once take spirit into me.
A woman lead?
They ascend.
'Twere basenesse not to follow.
My Girle's my
[Page]Charge, she hath bin ever so, and therefore ought
This night; and since one Divell some
Few dayes since began to haunt my house
She ne're had peace of thought, health, nor content,
Or least essentiall comfort; which to compasse,
All Art, wit, learning, this night Ile implore
To drive him hence, shall haunt my house no more.
Enter above Lord, Wife, Treatwell, and Geffery.
The Larum's given;
For at that watch word still the rufling noyse begins.

Would I were hence.


Now sweeter Musicke strikes.


There's no affright in this.

Enter Fryers, Bernard and Iohn at severall doores, as hallowing the Roome.

My lord these Friers I know.

But whether
They, or but their shadowes by Art Magicke rais'd we
Cannot yet presume.
But this I'me sure.
They are exceeding like.
Frier Bernard fetches in at his doore Slightall, and Roger, Frier Io. at his, Anne and the Divell.

That can be none but Slightall.

My Lord see, my
Fellow Roger's damn'd, for he's got in
Among the Fiends and Furies.
Were I not certaine my daughter Nan were desperately
Sicke, and kept both Bed and Chamber, I durst sweare
That were my Girle.
Is she not dead to night, and
Now her Ghost there walkes?
What might we
Thinke of't? the Friers prepare for Marriage; but what, he
Stands for the Father, whom they beckon to, to give
Her hand to Slightall.
Now I have't;
Upon my life the Divell can be no better; she the illusive
Spirit by whom this roome was haunted, contracted
Now unto yon desperate Ruffian.
But this troubles me, the Fury should assume no other
Shape but her faire Angell beauty.

Even for that, great reason too, would I could under­stand it.

Because he was enamoured first on her,
The more to tempt him, she assum'd that shape,
[Page]Whom else could she so fitly personate?
Nay goe together, you have my consent,
Ile ne're forbid the Banes.

Much joy unto you, good troth nor I.


The Divell give you good of't.

And so the
Divell doth, for your kind consent my Lord I thanke you,
And gentle wife for yours.
And, next my Father,
I hold it my fit duty, thankes to both.
Let me leape downe the next way, for the contract
I vow to breake.
But Mistris, that's the next way
To breake your necke, and keepe the contract firme;
The Staire-case will doe better.

Thus o're reach'd?

Fool'd and deluded? give me way my Lord,
For I will downe among them.

Hye to shelter, for there's a storme comming.

That you are man, this woman, I am rapt
And extasy'd in braine, but cannot yet
Unwrappe my sences from this wondrous maze;
This suddaine light of knowledge so much dazels,
That in my judgement I am blinded quite,
And know not how to free me.
That anon, my Daughter making knowne your
Deepe dispaire, your helpe I studied both of purse and braine,
And fearing a lost soule, I then turn'd Divell,
To prove your better Angell; talke with her,
For I must arme for thunder.
Enter Lord, Wife, Treatwell, and Geffery.

Was this a marriage in the Divells name?


Yes, and his Dam in presence; she lookt on.


That your shee Lamia?


Yes, my sweet wench Nan.


Were you sicke with a vengeance?

But I told you I should be well by Midnight;
So good Mother I feele my selfe I am well, never better
Shall I be plaine, my Lord? I crave your pardon,
Wife, for your rage I am arm'd, yes,
If thou could'st encounter with
[Page]Flesh-hookes, and with Fire-brands; for I tell thee
I am practis'd in the Divell: but to you, my Lord,
I pass'd my faith unto this Gentleman,
Had it beene done to you I ne're had broke it.
Sir you speake nobly;
What must bee, must be: it is in the will of Heaven,
And I am well pleas'd with it.
And am I over-reach'd? well Slightall,
My blessing on thee, she's thine.
Mother, my Knee in duty bowes thus low:
My Lord, your hand, I hope no
Malice harbours in your heart.

I hope you'le not imagine't.


Sir I doe not; and all I hope are pleas'd.


Wee are.

If these be so, we then are happy,
We are new wedded, you are our chiefe Guest,
Though once my Rivall, now you are my friend:
My fortune thus all malice hath defeated,
And by a new trike the Grand Divell cheated.
Exeunt Omnes.

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