THE WHORES PETITION To the London Prentices.

CLear was the day though it prov'd blustring weather
When the rude Rout in Tumults got together,
When little Boys would prove the first Beginners
To vend their fury upon poor frail Sinners.
Moor-fields the Stage on which they Act their Fury,
Making themselves both Plaintiffes, Judge and Jury.
Arriving soon unto that desperate height,
By crooked ways to seek to make things streight.
Sure little good can on their Actions border,
Who by Confusion will put things in Order.
Much harm by such Acts evermore Commences,
Sinners always will have Saints pretences.
When first by hallowing their Mis-rule was budding,
They'd play the Fools too as well as Jack Pudding:
Though their designs did not together hit,
The one fool'd for Money, th'others for want of Wit,
Sad was the Omen of their furious hope
First thing they meddle with to be a Rope,
It is bad jesting with edge-tools we say,
A Rope began, a Rope may end the Fray.
When they had spoil'd the Vaulters of their Tools,
They then must go to pull down Vaulting-Schools,
The Whores Dark Actions then must come to Light,
And by wrong doings, they will set things Right.
Houses by Moor-fields, and Whetstones Park them,
They were not Noble to them, so to Mark them
Angels of darkness did inhabite in them,
And they were routed as the Devil had been them.
Those Feather-beds which had been instrumental
For acting Lust, to ruine then were bent all.
The Sheets themselves did Pennance, Curtains and Valence,
Were open shown for hiding Leacherous Dalliance.
Chairs and Windows broken; work was made
Both for the Joyners; and the Glaziers Trade:
Such alterations did this mischief bring,
Summer Houses were made in time of Spring.
Thus when the Rout takes on them to bear sway,
The weaker must perforce the strong obey.
The Whores did to their Ruiners yeeld submission,
And humbly offer to them this Petition.

The PETITION.

WE do desire you to use fairer-Play,
Then turn us out of Doors 'fore Quarter-day;
And that which unto us is much more harming,
Thus to Eject us and to give no warning.
Had you told us before of your intention
We should not now our grievance to you mention;
We would have eased you of all your trouble,
And all this storm should but have prov'd a Bubble.
Our charges (tis well known) are very great
For gallant Clothes to make us seem Compleat;
Besides our Paint doth us some Money cost,
Shall all our charges thus by you be lost?
How shall the Broker, and the Brewer be paid?
Think you the Strong-water man will be delay'd?
They for to hunt us out will never lin,
Can we pay Out and have no comings IN?
No, we'r resolv'd although they nere so mind us,
Togo where neither they nor you shall finde us.
What think you then does all your stir arrive at,
If publick we can't trade, we'l do it private.
Yet let us wish you to forbear such storming,
Least it to you as well as us prove mourning.
The pulling down our houses were pretences,
Onely to colour your more soul offences,
When you had ruin'd us, we soon should see,
Others should in like manner ruin'd be;
And so this City (glory of our Nation)
By this might have been brought to desolation.
Ye rail on us because we fouly deal,
Yet take upon you for to rob and steal.
Was not our Plate and Linnen too the price
Purchas'd from us by your soul Avarice.
Yet would not that have serv'd your turn, when grown
To a more head, and no resistance shown.
Ist not a fine age that we do live in,
When Vice shall undertake to punish Sin,
We do not justifie our selves, yet must
Account that Theft's a sin as well as Lust.
We know our crimes are bad, and tis a curse,
To punisht be, by them which commit worse.
Does not this Mazanello's Acts revive?
To think that he in London were a live.
To see a Rout without all sence or Order
Run madding up and down in every border?
Can evil May-day be so quite forgot
To think this was not such another Plot!
What sullen Planet you so fouly led,
That such dire mischiefs should by you be bred?
Then leave such tricks which unto mischiefs tends,
And for our Councell henceforth count us friends.

London, Printed 1668.

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