The Scholars Petition for Play­dayes, in stead of Holy-dayes: Exhibited To the right Worshipfull, the Master, Wardens, and Assistants of the right Worshipfull Company of Merchant-Tailors, by the Scholars of their School, in the Parish of Laurence Pountney LONDON, Martii 21. an. 1644. being the day of their publick Examination.

After divers other Exercises in Latine, Greek, and lastly in English, the Peti­tioner, in behalf of himself and his fellowes, thus ad­dressed himself to the Company:

—yet one word more wee crave, to shew what griev's us,
Wherein wee pray your Goodnesse to relieve us.
SInce mis-call'd Holy-dayes, profanely spent,
Are justly now cashier'd by Parliament;
For that the Scarlet garment which they wore,
Was but a rubrick't-badge o'th' ROMANE WHORE;
Which therefore now must mourn in sable black,
Changing her colour i'th' next ALMANACK;
Guilty before of scandalous abuses:
Which notwithstanding yet the harmelesse Muses
Us'd only for their sportfull intermission
Of toylesome Studies; not for Superstition.
"For hee that made all things, did not make Man
"Of stone, or steel, or brasse CORINTHIAN;
"But lodg'd our Soules in a frail earthen mass,
"Thinner then water, britler then the glass.
"Hoe know's our lives are by nought sooner spent,
"Then having still our Soules and Bodies bent.
"A Field, left fallow some few yeares, will yield
"The richer crop, when it again is till'd.
"A River, stopped by a sluce, a space,
"Run's after rougher, and a swifter pace.
"A Bow, a while unbent, will after cast
"His shafts the farther▪ and them fix more fast.
"A Souldier, that a season still hath lain,
"Com's with more fury to the field again.
"Even so our Body, while, to gather breath,
"From paines sometimes at rest it sojourneth;
"It recollect's its powers, and with more cheere
"Fall's fresh again unto its first cariere.
To you therefore we make our Common Prayer,
That, weighing the premisses, you would repair
This dolefull dammage; and, in compensation
Of this sad loss, appoint, for recreation,
Some equipollent seasons, as will fit
Seem to your Wisedomes best for to permit.
Thus your poor Orators devoutly pray,
* That you sequester would some times for Play.
O let not then our Masters be our Jailors!
So shall we ever pray for MERCHANT-TAILORS.
This our Petition is, which you shall see
Subscrib'd with hands two hundred seventy three.

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