Microcosmography - or, a Piece of the World Discovered; in Essays and Characters
by John Earle
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

No. XI.


No. i.

A Caueat for commen Cvr setors vulgarely called Uagabones, set forth by Thomas Harman. Esquier. for the vtiliteand proffyt of hys naturall Countrey. Newly agmented and Jmprinted Anno Domini. M.D.LXUjj.

[P] Vewed, examined, and allowed, according vnto the Queenes Maiestyes Iniunctions

[Roughly-executed wood-cut, of two persons receiving punishment at the cart's tail from the hands of a beadle.]

Imprinted at London in Fletestret at the signe of the Faulcon by Wylliam Gryffith, and are to be solde at his shoppe in Saynt Dunstones Churche yarde in the West.

[4to. black letter, containing thirty folios, very incorrectly numbered.]

I commence my list of Characters, with a volume, which, although earlier than the period I originally intended to begin from, is of sufficient curiosity and interest to warrant introduction, and, I trust, to obtain pardon from the reader for the additional trouble I am thus preparing for him.

Mr. Warton, in his History of English Poetry, (iv. 74.) has given, with some trifling errors, a transcript of the title, and says he has a faint remembrance of a Collection of Epigrams, by the author, printed about 1599: these I have never been fortunate enough to meet with, nor do they appear in the collections of Ames or Herbert, neither of whom had seen a copy of the present work, although they mention Griffith's licence to print it as dated in 1566[BV].

It is dedicated to Elizabeth, countess of Shrewsbury; Mr. Warton thinks "with singular impropriety," although the motive appears at least to justify the measure, if it does not entitle the author to commendation. He addresses this noble lady as a person of extreme benevolence, and "as also aboundantly powrynge out dayly [her] ardent and bountifull charytie vppon all such as commeth for reliefe."—"I thought it good," he continues, "necessary, and my bounden dutye, to acquaynte your goodnes with the abhominable, wycked, and detestable behauor of all these rowsey, ragged rabblement of rake helles, that vnder the pretence of great misery, dyseases, and other innumerable calamites whiche they fayne through great hipocrisye, do wyn and gayne great almes in all places where they wyly wander."—On this account, therefore, and to preserve the kindness and liberality of the countess from imposition, Harman dedicates his book to that lady.

The notorious characters mentioned, are a "ruffler[BW]; a upright man[BX]; a hoker or angglear[BY]; a roge[BZ]; a wylde roge[CA]; a prygger of prauncers; a pallyarde[CB]; a frater[CC]; a Abraham man[CD]; a fresh water mariner, or whipiacke; a counterfet cranke[CE]; a dommerar[CF]; a dronken tinckar[CG]; a swadder or pedler; a jarke man, and a patrico[CH]; a demaunder for glymmar[CI]; a bawdy basket[CJ]; a antem morte[CK]; a walking morte; a doxe; a dell; a kynchin morte; and a kynchen co."

From such a list, several instances of the tricks, as well as specimens of the language of the thieves of the day, might with ease be extracted, did not the limits of my little volume compel me to refrain from entering at large into this history of rogues; a restriction I the more regret, from its containing several passages illustrating the manners of that period, and which would be found of material use towards explaining many of the allusions met with in our early English dramas and now but imperfectly understood.

"[P] Prygger of Prauncers. (Sign. C. iii. b.)

"A prigger of Prauncers be horse stealers, for to prigge signifieth in their language to steale, and a prauncer is a horse, so beinge put together, the matter is plaine. These go commonly in jerkins of leather or of white frese, & carry little wandes in their hands, and will walke through grounds and pasturs, to search and se horses mete for their purpose. And if thei chaunce to be met and asked by the owners of the grounde what they make there, they fayne straighte that they have loste theyr waye, and desyre to be enstructed the beste way to suche a place. These will also repayre to gentlemens houses, and aske theyr charitye, and will offer theyr seruice. And if you aske them what they can doe, they wil saye that they can kepe two or three geldinges, and waite vppon a gentleman. These haue also theyr women that, walkinge from them in other places, marke where and what they see abrode, and sheweth these priggars therof, when they meete, whych is wythin a weeke or two. And loke, where they steale any thynge, they conuey the same at the leaste three score miles of, or more. There was a gentleman, a verye friende of myne, rydynge from London homewarde into Kente, hauinge within three myles of his house busynesse, alyghted of his horse, and hys man also, in a pretye village, where diuers houses were, and looked about hym where he myghte haue a conuenyent person to walke his horse, because he would speak we a farmer that dwelte on the backe side of the sayde village, little aboue a quarter of a myle from the place where he lighted, and had his man to waight vpon hym, as it was mete for his callynge: espieng a priggar there standing, thinkinge the same to dwel there, charging this prity prigginge person to walke his horse well, and that they might not stande still for takynge of colde, and at his returne (which he saide should not be longe,) he would geue him a peny to drinke, and so wente about his busines. Thys peltynge priggar, proude of his praye, walketh hys horses vp and downe, till he sawe the gentleman out of sighte, and leapes him into the saddell, and awaye be goeth a mayne. This gentleman returning, and findyng not his horses, sente his man to the one ende of the village, & he went himselfe vnto the other ende, and enquired as he went for hys horses that were walked, and began somewhat to suspecte, because neither he nor his man coulde neyther see nor fynde him. Then this gentleman diligently enquired of three or foure towne dwellers there whether any such person, declaring his stature, age, apparel, and so manye linamentes of his body as he coulde call to remembraunce. And vna voce, all sayde that no such man dwelte in their streate, neither in the parish that they knewe of, but some did wel remember that suche a one they sawe there lyrkinge and huggeringe[CL] two houres before the gentleman came thether and a straunger to them. J had thought, quoth this gentleman, he had here dwelled, and marched home mannerly in his botes: farre from the place he dwelt not. J suppose at his comming home he sente such wayes as he suspected or thought mete to search for this prigger, but hetherto he neuer harde any tidinges againe of his palfreys. J had the best gelding stolen out of my pasture that J had amogst others, while this boke was first a printing."

At the end of the several characters, the author gives a list of the names of the most notorious thieves of his day, a collection of the cant phrases used by them, with their significations; and a dialogue between an uprighte man and a roge, which I shall transcribe:—

"The vpright Cose canteth to the Roger. The vprighte man spaketh to the roge.

Man. Bene lyghtmans to thy quarromes in what lipkē hast thou lipped in this darkemanes; whether in a lybbege or in the strummell?

God morrowe to thy bodye, in what house hast thou lyne in all night whether in a bed, or in the strawe?

Roge. J couched a hogeshed in a skypper this darkemans.

I laye me down to sleepe in a barne this night.

Man. J towre ye strummell tryne vpon thy nabcher & togman.

I see the straw hange upon thy cap and coate.

Roge. J saye by the Salomon J wyll lage it of with a gage of bene bouse then cut to my nose watch.

J sweare by the masse J wyll wash it of with a quart of drinke, then saye to me what thou wilt.

Man. Why, hast thou any lowre in thy bouge to bouse?

Why, hast thou any money in thy purse to drinke?

Roge. But a flagge, a wyn, and a make.

But a grot, a penny, and a halfe-penny.

Man. Why where is the kene that hath the bene bouse?

Where is the house that hath the good drinke?

Roge. A bene mort hereby at the signe of the prauncer.

A good wyfe here by at the signe of the hors.

Man. J cutt it is quyer bouse J bousd a flagge the laste darkemans.

J saye it is small and naughtye drynke, J dranke a groate there the last night.

Roge. But bouse there a bord, and thou shalt haue beneship.

But drinke there a shyllinge, and thou shalt haue very good.

Tower ye, yander is the kene, dup the gygger, and maund that is beneshype.

Se you, yonder is the house, open the doore, and aske for the best.

Man. This bouse is as benshyp as rome bouse.

This drinke is as good as wyne.

Now J tower that bene bouse makes nase nabes.

Now J se that good drynke makes a dronken heade.

Maunde of this morte what bene pecke is in her ken.

Aske of this wyfe what good meate shee hath in her house.

Roge. She hath a cacling chete, a grunting chete, ruff pecke, cassan, and popplarr of yarum.

She hath a hen, a pyg, baken, chese and mylke porrage.

Man. That is beneshyp to oure watche.

That is very good for vs.

Now we haue well bousd, let vs strike some chete.

Nowe we haue well dronke, let vs steale some thinge.

Yonder dwelleth a quyere cuffen it were beneshype to myll hym.

Yonder dwelleth a hoggeshe and choyrlyshe man it weare very well donne to robbe him.

Roge. Nowe, bynge we a waste to the hygh pad, the ruff-manes is by.

Naye, let vs go hence to the hygh waye, the wodes is at hande.

Man. So may we happen on the harmanes and cly the jarke, or to the quyer ken and skower quyaer cramprings and so to tryning on the chates.

So we maye chaunce to set in the stockes, eyther be whypped, eyther had to prison-house, and there be shackeled with bolttes and fetters, and then to hange on the gallowes.

[Rogue.] Gerry gan the ruffian clye thee.

A corde in thy mouth, the deuyll take thee.

Man. What! stowe you bene cofe and cut benar whydds; and byng we to some vyle to nyp a bong, so shall we haue lowre for the bousing ken and when we byng back to the deuseauye, we wyll fylche some duddes of the ruffemans, or myll the ken for a lagge of dudes.

What! holde your peace, good fellowe, and speake better wordes; and go we to London to cut a purse, then shal we haue money for the ale-house, and when we come backe agayne into the countrey, we wyll steale some lynnen clothes of one hedges, or robbe some house for a bucke of clothes."

I have been induced, from the curiosity and rarity of this tract, to extend my account of it farther, perhaps, than many of my readers may think reasonable, and shall, therefore, only add a specimen of Harman's poetry, with which the original terminates.

"—> Thus J conclude my bolde beggar's booke, That all estates most playnely maye see; As in a glasse well pollyshed to looke, Their double demeaner in eche degree; Their lyues, their language, their names as they be; That with this warning their myndes may be warmed To amende their mysdeedes, and so lyue vnharmed."

Another tract of the same description is noticed in Herbert's Ames (p. 885.) as printed so early as in 1565. A copy of the second edition in the Bodleian Library, possesses the following title:—"The Fraternitye of Uacabondes. As wel of ruflyng Vacabondes, as of beggerly, of women as of men, of gyrles as of boyes, with their proper names and qualities. With a description of the crafty company of Cousoners and Shifters. Whereunto also is adioyned the xxv orders of Knaues, otherwyse called a Quartern of Knaues. Confirmed for euer by Cocke Lorell[CM], &c. Imprinted at London by Iohn Awdeley, dwellyng in little Britayne streete without Aldersgate. 1575." This, although much shorter than Harman's, contains nearly the same characters, and is therefore thus briefly dismissed. An account of it, drawn up by the editor of the present volume, may be found in Brydges' British Bibliographer, vol. ii. p. 12.

It may not be amiss to notice in this place, that a considerable part of The Belman of London, bringing to light the most notorious villanies that are now practised in the kingdom, &c. 4to. 1608, is derived from Harman's Caveat. Among the books bequeathed to the Bodleian, by Burton, (4to. G.8. Art. BS.) is a copy of the Belman, with the several passages so borrowed, marked in the hand-writing of the author of the Anatomy of Melancholy, who has also copied the canting dialogue just given, and added several notes of his own on the margin.


[BV] In the epistle to the reader, the author terms it "this second impression."

[BW] A ruffler seems to have been a bully as well as a beggar, he is thus described in the Fraternitye of Vacabondes; (see p. 228.) "A ruffeler goeth wyth a weapon to seeke seruice, saying he hath bene a seruitor in the wars, and beggeth for his reliefe. But his chiefest trade is to robbe poore way-faring men and market-women." In New Custome a morality, 1573, Creweltie, one of the characters, is termed a ruffler. See also Decker's Belman of London. Sign. C. iv.

[BX] "An upright man is one that goeth wyth the trunchion of a staffe, which staffe they cal a Flitchmā. This man is of so much authority, that meeting with any of his profession, he may cal them to accompt, and comaund a share or snap vnto himselfe of al that they have gained by their trade in one moneth." Fraternitye of Vacabondes.

[BY] This worthy character approaches somewhat near to a shop-lifter. Decker tells us that "their apparele in which they walke is commonly freize jerkins and gallye slops." Belman. Sign. C. iv.

[BZ] A rogue, says Burton, in his MS. notes to Decker's Belman of London, "is not so stoute and [hardy] as the vpright man."

[CA] A person whose parents were rogues.

[CB] "These be called also clapperdogens" and "go with patched clokes." Sign. C. iv.

[CC] A Frater and a Whipiacke, are persons who travel with a counterfeite license, the latter in the dress of a sailor. See Fraternitye, Belman, &c.

[CD] "An Abraham-man is he that walketh bare-armed, and bare-legged, and fayneth hymselfe mad, and caryeth a packe of wool, or a stycke with baken on it, or such lyke toy, and nameth himselfe Poore Tom." Fraternitye of Vacabondes.

[CE] A person who asks charity, and feigns sickness and disease.

[CF] One who pretends to be dumb. In Harman's time they were chiefly Welsh-men.

[CG] An artificer who mends one hole, and makes twenty.

[CH] A jarke man can read and write, and sometimes understands a little Latin. A patrico solemnizes their marriages.

[CI] These are commonly women who ask assistance, feigning that they have lost their property by fire.

[CJ] A woman who cohabits with an upright man, and professes to sell thread, &c.

[CK] "These antem mortes be maried wemen, as there be but a fewe: for antem, in their language is a churche—" &c. Harman. Sign. E. iv. A walking morte is one unmarried: a doxe, a dell, and a kynchin morte, are all females; and a kynchen co is a young boy not thoroughly instructed in the art of canting and prigging.

[CL] In Florio's Italian Dictionary, the word dinascoso is explained "secretly, hiddenly, in hugger-mugger." See also Reed's Shakspeare, xviii. 284. Old Plays, 1780. viii. 48.

[CM] Herbert notices Cock Lorelles Bote, which he describes to be a satire in verse, in which the author enumerates all the most common trades and callings then in being. It was printed, in black letter, Wynken de Worde, 4to. without date. History of Printing ii. 224, and Percy's Reliques, i. 137, edit. 1794.

ii. Picture of a Puritane, 8vo. 1605. [Dr. Farmer's Sale Catalogue, page 153, No. 3709.]

iii. _"A Wife novv the Widdow of Sir Thomas Overbvrye. Being a most exquisite and singular Poem of the Choice of a Wife. Wherevnto are added many witty Characters, and conceited Newes, written by himselfe and other learned Gentlemen his friends.

Dignum laude virum musa vetat mori, Caelo musa beat. Hor. Car. lib. 3.

London Printed for Lawrence Lisle, and are to bee sold at his shop in Paule's Church-yard, at the signe of the Tiger's head. 1614."_[CN]

[4to. pp. 64, not numbered.]

Of Sir Thomas Overbury's life, and unhappy end, we have so full an account in the Biographia, and the various historical productions, treating of the period in which he lived, that nothing further will be expected in this place. His Wife and Characters were printed, says Wood, several times during his life, and the edition above noticed, was supposed, by the Oxford biographer, to be the fourth or fifth[CO]. Having never seen a copy of the early editions, I am unable to fix on any character undoubtedly the production of Overbury, and the printer confesses some of them were written by "other learned gentlemen." These were greatly encreased in subsequent impressions, that of 1614 having only twenty-one characters, and that in 1622 containing no less than eighty.

A COURTIER,—(Sign. C. 4. b.)

To all men's thinking is a man, and to most men the finest: all things else are defined by the understanding, but this by the sences; but his surest marke is, that hee is to bee found onely about princes. Hee smells; and putteth away much of his judgement about the scituation of his clothes. Hee knowes no man that is not generally knowne. His wit, like the marigold, openeth with the sunne, and therefore he riseth not before ten of the clocke. Hee puts more confidence in his words than meaning, and more in his pronuntiation than his words. Occasion is his Cupid, and hee hath but one receipt of making loue. Hee followes nothing but inconstancie, admires nothing but beauty, honours nothing but fortune. Loues nothing. The sustenance of his discourse his newes, and his censure like a shot depends vpon the charging. Hee is not, if he be out of court, but, fish-like, breathes destruction, if out of his owne element. Neither his motion, or aspect are regular, but he mooues by the vpper spheres, and is the reflexion of higher substances. If you finde him not heere, you shall in Paules with a pick-tooth in his hat, a cape cloke, and a long stocking.


[CN] In 1614 appeared The Husband, a Poeme, expressed in a compleat man. See Censura Literaria, v. 365. John Davies, of Hereford, wrote A Select Second Hvsband for Sir Thomas Overbvries Wife, now a matchlesse widow. 8vo. Lond. 1616. And in 1673 was published, The Illustrious Wife, viz. That excellent Poem, Sir Thomas Overbvrie's Wife, illustrated by Giles Oldisworth, Nephew to the same Sir T. O.

[CO] It was most probably the fifth, as Mr. Capel, who has printed the Wife, in his very curious volume, entitled Prolusions, 8vo. Lond. 1760, notices two copies in 1614, one in 8vo. which I suppose to be the third, and one in 4to. stated in the title to be the fourth edition: the sixth was in the following year, 1615; the seventh, eighth, and ninth were in 1616, the eleventh in 1622, twelfth in 1627, thirteenth 1628, fourteenth, 1630, fifteenth, 1632, sixteenth, 1638, and Mr. Brand possessed a copy, the specific edition of which I am unable to state, printed in 1655. Catalogue, No. 4927.

iv. "Satyrical Essayes, Characters, and others, or accurate and quick Descriptions, fitted to the life of their Subiects. [Greek: ton ethon de phylattesthai mallon dei he tous hecheis]. Theophras.

Aspice et haec, si forte aliquid decoctius audis, Jude vaporata Lector mihi ferucat aure. IUUEN.

Plagosus minime Plagiarius.

John Stephens. London, Printed by Nicholas Okes, and are to be sold by Roger Barnes, at his Shop in St. Dunstane's Church-yard. 1615."

[8vo. pp. 321. title, preface, &c. 14 more.]

In a subsequent impression of this volume, 8vo. in the same year, and with a fresh title page, dated 1631[CP], we find the author to be "John Stephens the younger, of Lincoln's Inn:" no other particulars of him appear to exist at present, excepting that he was the author of a play entitled, Cinthia's Revenge; or, Maenander's Extasie. Lond. for Barnes, 1613, 4to. "which," says Langbaine, "is one of the longest plays I ever read, and withal the most tedious." Ben Jonson addressed some lines[CQ] to the author, whom he calls "his much and worthily esteemed friend," as did F. C. G. Rogers, and Thomas Danet.

Stephens dedicates his book to Thomas Turner, Esq. For the sake of a little variety I give one of his "three satyricall Essayes on Cowardlinesse," which are written in verse.


"Feare to resist good virtue's common foe, And feare to loose some lucre, which doth grow By a continued practise; makes our fate Banish (with single combates) all the hate, Which broad abuses challenge of our spleene. For who in Vertue's troope was euer seene, That did couragiously with mischiefes fight, Without the publicke name of hipocrite? Vaine-glorious, malapert, precise, deuout, Be tearmes which threaten those that go about To stand in opposition of our times With true defiance, or satyricke rimes. Cowards they be, branded among the worst, Who (through contempt of Atheisme), neuer durst Crowd neere a great man's elbow to suggest Smooth tales with glosse, or Enuy well addrest. These be the noted cowards of our age; Who be not able to instruct the stage With matter of new shamelesse impudence Who cannot almost laugh at innocence; And purchase high preferment by the waies, Which had bene horrible in Nero's dayes. They are the shamefull cowards, who contemne Vices of state, or cannot flatter them; Who can refuse advantage, or deny Villanous courses, if they can espye Some little purchase to inrich their chest Though they become vncomfortably blest. We still account those cowards, who forbeare (Being possess'd with a religious feare) To slip occasion, when they might erect Hornes on a tradesman's noddle, or neglect The violation of a virgin's bed With promise to requite her maiden-head. Basely low-minded we esteeme that man Who cannot swagger well, or (if he can) Who doth not with implacable desire, Follow revenge with a consuming fire. Extortious rascals, when they are alone, Bethinke how closely they have pick'd each bone, Nay, with a frolicke humour, they will brag, How blancke they left their empty client's bag. Which dealings if they did not giue delight, Or not refresh their meetings in despight, They would accounted be both weake, vnwise, And, like a timorous coward, too precise. Your handsome-bodied youth (whose comely face May challenge all the store of Nature's grace,) If, when a lustfull lady doth inuite, By some lasciuious trickes his deere delight, If then he doth abhorre such wanton ioy; Whose is not almost ready to destroy Ciuility with curses, when he heares The tale recited? blaming much his years, Or modest weaknesse, and with cheeks ful-blown Each man will wish the case had beene his own. Graue holy men, whose habite will imply Nothing but honest zeale, or sanctity, Nay so vprighteous will their actions seeme, As you their thoughts religion will esteeme. Yet these all-sacred men, who daily giue Such vowes, wold think themselves vnfit to liue, If they were artlesse in the flattering vice, Euen as it were a daily sacrifice: Children deceiue their parents with expence: Charity layes aside her conscience, And lookes vpon the fraile commodity Of monstrous bargaines with a couetous eye: And now the name of generosity, Of noble cariage or braue dignity, Keepe such a common skirmish in our bloud, As we direct the measure of things good, By that, which reputation of estate, Glory of rumor, or the present rate Of sauing pollicy doth best admit. We do employ materials of wit, Knowledge, occasion, labour, dignity, Among our spirits of audacity, Nor in our gainefull proiects do we care For what is pious, but for what we dare. Good humble men, who haue sincerely layd Saluation for their hope, we call afraid. But if you will vouchsafe a patient eare, You shall perceiue, men impious haue most feare."

The second edition possesses the following title—"New Essayes and Characters, with a new Satyre in defence of the Common Law, and Lawyers: mixt with reproofe against their Enemy Ignoramus, &c. London, 1631." It seems not improbable that some person had attacked Stephens's first edition, although I am unable to discover the publication alluded to. I suspect him to be the editor of, or one of the contributors to, the later copies of Sir Thomas Overbury's Wife, &c.: since one of Stephens's friends, (a Mr. I. Cocke) in a poetical address prefixed to his New Essayes, says "I am heere enforced to claime 3 characters following the Wife[CR]; viz. the Tinker, the Apparatour, and Almanack-maker, that I may signify the ridiculous and bold dealing of an vnknowne botcher: but I neede make no question what he is; for his hackney similitudes discouer him to be the rayler above-mentioned, whosoeuer that rayler be."


[CP] Coxeter, in his MSS. notes to Gildon's Lives of the Eng. Dram. Poets, in the Bodleian, says that the second edition was in 8vo. 1613, "Essays and Characters, Ironical and Instructive," but this must be a mistake.


"Who takes thy volume to his vertuous hand, Must be intended still to vnderstand: Who bluntly doth but looke vpon the same, May aske, what author would conceale his name? Who reads may roaue, and call the passage darke, Yet may, as blind men, sometimes hit the marke. Who reads, who roaues, who hopes to vnderstand, May take thy volume to his vertuous hand. Who cannot reade, but onely doth desire To vnderstand, hee may at length admire.

B. I."

[CR] These were added to the sixth edition of the Wife, in 1615.

v. Caracters upon Essaies, morall and diuine, written for those good spirits that will take them in good part, and make use of them to good purpose. London: Printed by Edw. Griffin for John Guillim, and are to be sold at his shop in Britaines Burse. 1615. 12mo.

[Censura Literaria, v. 51. Monthly Mirror, xi. 16.]

vi. The Good and the Badde, or Descriptions of the Worthies and Vnworthies of this Age. Where the Best may see their Graces, and the Worst discerne their Basenesse. London, Printed by George Purslowe for Iohn Budge, and are to be sold at the great South-dore of Paules, and at Brittaines Bursse. 1616.

[4to. containing pp. 40, title, dedication "to Sir Gilbert Houghton, Knight," and preface six more. A second edition appeared in 1643, under the title of England's Selected Characters, &c.]

The author of these characters[CS] was Nicholas Breton, who dedicates them to Sir Gilbert Houghton, of Houghton, Knight. Of Breton no particulars are now known, excepting what may be gained from an epitaph in Norton church, Northamptonshire[CT], by which we learn that he was the son of Captain Breton, of Tamworth, in Staffordshire, and served himself in the Low Countries, under the command of the Earl of Leicester. He married Anne, daughter of Sir Edward Legh, or Leigh, of Rushell, Staffordshire, by whom he had five sons and four daughters, and having purchased the manor of Norton, died there June 22, 1624[CU].

Breton appears to have been a poet of considerable reputation among his contemporaries, as he is noticed with commendation by Puttenhem and Meres: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges declares that his poetical powers were distinguished by a simplicity, at once easy and elegant. Specimens of his productions in verse, may be found in Percy's Reliques, Ellis's Specimens, Cooper's Muses' Library, Censura Literaria; and an imperfect list of his publications is given by Ritson, in the Bibliographia Poetica, which is augmented by Mr. Park, in the Cens. Lit. ix. 163[CV].


A worthy priuie counceller is the pillar of a realme, in whose wisedome and care, vnder God and the king, stands the safety of a kingdome; he is the watch-towre to giue warning of the enemy, and a hand of prouision for the preseruation of the state: hee is an oracle in the king's eare, and a sword in the king's hand, an euen weight in the ballance of justice, and a light of grace in the loue of truth: he is an eye of care in the course of lawe, a heart of loue in the seruice of his soueraigne, a mind of honour in the order of his seruice, and a braine of inuention for the good of the common-wealth; his place is powerful, while his seruice is faithfull, and his honour due in the desert of his employment. In summe, he is as a fixed planet mong the starres of the firmament, which through the clouds in the ayre, shewes the nature of his light.


An vnworthie counceller is the hurt of a king, and the danger of a state, when the weaknes of judgement may commit an error, or the lacke of care may give way to vnhappinesse: he is a wicked charme in the king's eare, a sword of terror in the aduice of tyranny: his power is perillous in the partiality of will, and his heart full of hollownesse in the protestation of loue: hypocrisie is the couer of his counterfaite religion, and traiterous inuētion is the agent of his ambition: he is the cloud of darknesse, that threatneth foule weather, and if it growe to a storme, it is feareful where it falls: hee is an enemy to God in the hate of grace, and worthie of death in disloyalty to his soueraigne. In summe, he is an vnfit person for the place of a counceller, and an vnworthy subject to looke a king in the face.


An effeminate foole is the figure of a baby: he loues nothing but gay, to look in a glasse, to keepe among wenches, and to play with trifles; to feed on sweet meats, and to be daunced in laps, to be inbraced in armes, and to be kissed on the cheeke: to talke idlely, to looke demurely, to goe nicely, and to laugh continually: to be his mistresse' servant, and her mayd's master, his father's love, and his mother's none-child: to play on a fiddle, and sing a loue-song, to weare sweet gloues, and look on fine things: to make purposes and write verses, deuise riddles, and tell lies: to follow plaies, and study daunces, to heare newes, and buy trifles: to sigh for loue, and weepe for kindnesse, and mourne for company, and bee sicke for fashion: to ride in a coach, and gallop a hackney, to watch all night, and sleepe out the morning: to lie on a bed, and take tobacco, and to send his page of an idle message to his mistresse; to go vpon gigges, to haue his ruffes set in print, to picke his teeth, and play with a puppet. In summe, hee is a man-childe, and a woman's man, a gaze of folly, and wisedome's griefe[CW].


Very aptly deuised by N. B. Gent.

[From "The Phoenix Nest. Built vp with the most rare and refined workes of Noble men, woorthy Knights, gallant Gentlemen, Masters of Arts, and braue Schollers," &c. "Set foorth by R. S. of the Inner Temple, Gentleman." 4to. London, by Iohn Iackson, 1593, page 28.]

A secret many yeeres vnseene, In play at chesse, who knowes the game, First of the King, and then the Queene, Knight, Bishop, Rooke, and so by name, Of euerie Pawne I will descrie, The nature with the qualitie.


The King himselfe is haughtie care, Which ouerlooketh all his men, And when he seeth how they fare He steps among them now and then, Whom, when his foe presumes to checke, His seruants stand, to giue the necke.


The Queene is queint, and quicke conceit, Which makes hir walke which way she list, And rootes them vp, that lie in wait To worke hir treason, ere she wist: Hir force is such against hir foes That whom she meetes, she ouerthrowes.


The Knight is knowledge how to fight Against his prince's enimies, He neuer makes his walke outright, But leaps and skips, in wilie wise, To take by sleight a traitrous foe, Might slilie seeke their ouerthrowe.


The Bishop he is wittie braine, That chooseth crossest pathes to pace, And euermore he pries with paine, To see who seekes him most disgrace: Such straglers when he findes astraie He takes them vp, and throwes awaie.


The Rookes are reason on both sides, Which keepe the corner houses still, And warily stand to watch their tides, By secret art to worke their will, To take sometime a theefe vnseene, Might mischiefe meane to King or Queene.


The Pawne before the King, is peace, Which he desires to keepe at home, Practise, the Queene's, which doth not cease Amid the world abroad to roame, To finde, and fall upon each foe, Whereas his mistres meanes to goe.

Before the Knight, is perill plast, Which he, by skipping ouergoes, And yet that Pawne can worke a cast, To ouerthrow his greatest foes; The Bishop's prudence, prieng still Which way to worke his master's will.

The Rooke's poore Pawnes, are sillie swaines, Which seeldome serue, except by hap, And yet those Pawnes, can lay their traines, To catch a great man, in a trap: So that I see, sometime a groome May not be spared from his roome.


The King is stately, looking hie; The Queene doth beare like maiestie: The Knight is hardie, valiant, wise: The Bishop prudent and precise. The Rookes no raungers out of raie[CX], The Pawnes the pages in the plaie.


Then rule with care, and quicke conceit, And fight with knowledge, as with force; So beare a braine, to dash deceit, And worke with reason and remorse. Forgive a fault when young men plaie, So giue a mate, and go your way.

And when you plaie beware of checke, Know how to saue and giue a necke: And with a checke beware of mate; But cheefe, ware had I wist too late: Loose not the Queene, for ten to one, If she be lost, the game is gone."


[CS] These are a king; a queen; a prince; a privy-counsellor; a noble man; a bishop; a judge; a knight; a gentleman; a lawyer; a soldier; a physician; a merchant (their good and bad characters); a good man, and an atheist or most bad man; a wise man and a fool; an honest man and a knave; an usurer; a beggar; a virgin and a wanton woman; a quiet woman; an unquiet woman; a good wife; an effeminate fool; a parasite; a bawd; a drunkard; a coward; an honest poor man; a just man; a repentant sinner; a reprobate; an old man; a young man, and a holy man.

[CT] It is by no means certain that this may not be intended to perpetuate the memory of some other person of the same names, although Mr. Gough, in a note to the second volume of Queen Elizabeth's Progresses, seems to think it belongs to our author.

[CU] Bridges' Northamptonshire, vol. ii. page 78, s. Shaw's Staffordshire, vol. i. page 422.

[CV] To these lists of Breton's productions may be added, 1. A Solemne Passion of the Soule's Loue. 4to. Lond. 1598. 2. The Mother's Blessing, 4to. Lond. 1602. 3. A True Description of vnthankfulnesse; or an enemie to Ingratitude. 4to. Lond. 1602. 4. Breton's Longing, 4to. title lost in the Bodleian copy; prefixed are verses by H. T. gent. 5. A Poste with a packet of Mad Letters, 4to. 1633, dedicated by Nicholas Breton to Maximilian Dallison of Hawlin, Kent. The last tract excepted, all the above are in a volume bequeathed by Bishop Tanner to the university of Oxford, which contains many of the pieces noticed by Ritson, and, in addition, The Passion of a discontented Minde. 4to. Lond. 1602, which I should have no hesitation in placing to Breton. At the end of the volume are The Passions of the Spirit, and Excellent Vercis worthey imitation of euery Christian in thier Conuersiation, both in manuscript, and, if we may judge from the style, evidently by the author before-mentioned. For the Figures, in the composition of which he had certainly a share, see page 198.

[CW] I am not aware that the following specimen of his versification, which is curious, has been reprinted.

[CX] Raie, for array; order, rank. So Spencer.

"And all the damzels of that towne in ray, Came dauncing forth, and ioyous carrols song:"

Faerie Queene, book v. canto xi. 34.

vii. Essayes and Characters of a Prison and Prisoners. Written by G. M. of Grayes'-Inne, Gent. (Woodcut of a keeper standing with the hatch of a prison open, in his left hand a staff, the following lines at the side;

"Those that keepe mee, I keepe; if can, will still: Hee's a true Iaylor strips the Diuell in ill.")

Printed at London for Mathew Walbancke and are to be solde at his shops at the new and old Gate of Grayes-Inne. 1618.

[4to. pp. 48. title, dedication, &c. eight more.]

A second edition appeared in 1638, and, as the title informs us, "with some new additions:" what these were I am not able to state, as my copy, although it appears perfect, contains precisely the same with that of 1618.

Of Geffray Mynshul, as he signs his name to the dedication, I can learn no particulars, but I have reason to suppose him descended from an ancient and highly respectable family, residing at Minshull, in the county of Chester[CY], during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. By what mishap he became an inmate of the King's-bench prison, from when he dates[CZ] his Essayes, it is impossible to conjecture, but as he talks of usury and extortion, as well as of severe creditors; and advises those who are compelled to borrow, to pay as soon as they can, we may suppose that imprudence and extravagance assisted in reducing him to the situation he attempts to describe.

In the dedication to his uncle, "Mr. Matthew Mainwaring[DA], of Namptwich, in Cheshire," he says:—"Since my comming into this prison, what with the strangenesse of the place, and strictnesse of my liberty, I am so transported that I could not follow that study wherein I tooke great delight and cheife pleasure, and to spend my time idley would but adde more discontentments to my troubled brest, and being in this chaos of discontentments, fantasies must arise, which will bring forth the fruits of an idle braine, for e malis minimum. It is farre better to giue some accompt of time, though to little purpose, than none at all. To which end I gathered a handfull of essayes, and few characters of such things as by my owne experience I could say Probatum est: not that thereby I should either please the reader, or shew exquisitenes of inuention, or curious stile; seeing what I write of is but the child of sorrow, bred by discontentments, and nourisht vp with misfortunes, to whosc help melancholly Saturne gaue his iudgement, the night-bird her inuention, and the ominous rauen brought a quill taken from his owne wing, dipt in the inke of misery, as chiefe ayders in this architect of sorrow."


A prisoner is an impatient patient, lingring vnder the rough hands of a cruell phisitian: his creditor hauing cast his water knowes his disease, and hath power to cure him, but takes more pleasure to kill him. He is like Tantalus, who hath freedome running by his doore, yet cannot enioy the least benefit thereof. His greatest griefe is that his credit was so good and now no better. His land is drawne within the compasse of a sheepe's skin, and his owne hand the fortification that barres him of entrance: hee is fortunes tossing-bal, an obiect that would make mirth melancholy: to his friends an abiect, and a subiect of nine dayes' wonder in euery barber's shop, and a mouthfull of pitty (that he had no better fortune) to midwiues and talkatiue gossips; and all the content that this transitory life can giue him seemes but to flout him, in respect the restraint of liberty barres the true vse. To his familiars hee is like a plague, whom they dare scarce come nigh for feare of infection, he is a monument ruined by those which raysed him, he spends the day with a hei mihi! ve miserum! and the night with a nullis est medicabilis herbis."


[CY] In the church of St. Mary, at Nantwich, in that county, is a monument erected by Geofry Minshull, of Stoke, Esq. to the memory of his ancestors. Historical Account of Nantwich, 8vo. 1774, page 33. King, in his Vale Royal of England, folio, Lond. 1656, page 74, speaks of Minshall-hall, "a very ancient seat, which hath continued the successions of a worshipfull race in its own name"—&c.

[CZ] This place of residence was omitted in the second edition.

[DA] The Mainwarings were an old family of repute, being mentioned as residing near Nantwich, by Leland, Itin. vol. 7. pt. i. fol. 43. See also the list of escheators of Cheshire, in Leycester's Historical Antiquities, folio, Lond. 1673, p. 186.

viii. Cvres for the Itch. Characters. Epigrams. Epitaphs. By H. P. Scalpat qui tangitur. London, Printed for Thomas Iones, at the signs of the Blacke Rauen in the Strand. 1626. [8vo. containing pp. 142, not numbered.]

I have little doubt but that the initials H. P. may be attributed with justice to Henry Parrot, author of Laquei ridiculosi: or, Springes for Woodcocks, a collection of epigrams, printed at London in 1613[DB], 8vo. and commended by Mr. Warton, who says, that "many of them are worthy to be revived in modern collections"[DC]. To the same person I would also give The Mastive, or Young Whelpe of the Old Dogge. Epigrams and Satyrs. Lond. (Date cut off in the Bodleian copy,) 4to.—The Mouse Trap, consisting of 100 Epigrams, 4to. 1606.—Epigrams by H. P. 4to. 1608.—and The More the Merrier: containing three-score and odde headlesse Epigrams, shot (like the Fooles bolt) amongst you, light where they will, 4to. 1608[DD].

It appears from the Preface to Cvres for the Itch, that the Epigrams and Epitaphs were written in 1624, during the author's residence in the country, at the "long vacation," and the Characters[DE], which are "not so fully perfected as was meant," were composed "of later times." The following afford as fair a specimen of this part of the volume as can be produced.

"A SCOLD. (B. 5.)

Is a much more heard of, then least desired to bee seene or knowne, she-kinde of serpent; the venom'd sting of whose poysonous tongue, worse then the biting of a scorpion, proues more infectious farre then can be cured. Shee's of all other creatures most vntameablest, and couets more the last word in scoulding, then doth a Combater the last stroke for victorie. She lowdest lifts it standing at her door, bidding, w^{th} exclamation, flat defiance to any one sayes blacke's her eye. She dares appeare before any iustice, nor is least daunted with the sight of counstable, nor at worst threatnings of a cucking-stoole. There's nothing mads or moues her more to outrage, then but the very naming of a wispe, or if you sing or whistle when she is scoulding. If any in the interim chance to come within her reach, twenty to one she scratcheth him by the face; or doe but offer to hold her hands, sheel presently begin to cry out murder. There's nothing pacifies her but a cup of sacke, which taking in full measure of digestion, shee presently forgets all wrongs that's done her, and thereupon falls streight a weeping. Doe but intreat her with faire words, or flatter her, she then confesseth all her imperfections, and layes the guilt vpon the whore her mayd. Her manner is to talke much in her sleepe, what wrongs she hath indured of that rogue her husband whose hap may be in time to dye a martyr; and so I leaue them."


Is a world of happiness, that brings with it a kingdom in conceit, and makes a perfect adiunct in societie; shee's such a comfort as exceeds content, and proues so precious as canot be paralleld, yea more inestimable then may be valued. Shee's any good man's better second selfe, the very mirror of true constant modesty, the carefull huswife of frugalitie, and dearest obiect of man's heart's felicitie. She commands with mildnesse, rules with discretion, liues in repute, and ordereth all things that are good or necessarie. Shee's her husband's solace, her house's ornament, her children's succor, and her seruant's comfort. Shee's (to be briefe) the eye of warinesse, the tongue of silence, the hand of labour, and the heart of loue. Her voice is musicke, her countenance meeknesse; her minde vertuous, and her soule gratious. Shee's a blessing giuen from God to man, a sweet companion in his affliction, and ioynt co-partner upon all occasions. Shee's (to conclude) earth's chiefest paragon, and will bee, when shee dyes, heauen's dearest creature."


[DB] Mr. Steevens quotes an edition in 1606, but the preface expressly states, that they were composed in 1611.—"Duo propemodum anni elapsi sunt, ex quo primum Epigrammata haec (qualiacunque) raptim et festinanter perficiebam"—&c.

[DC] History of English Poetry, iv. 73.

[DD] Censura Literaria, iii. 387, 388.

[DE] These consist of a ballad-maker; a tapster; a drunkard; a rectified young man; a young nouice's new yonger wife; a common fidler; a broker; a iouiall good fellow; a humourist; a malepart yong upstart; a scold; a good wife, and a selfe-conceited parcell-witty old dotard.

ix. Characters of Vertves and Vices. In two Bookes. By Ios. Hall. Imprinted at London, 1627.

The above is copied from a separate title in the collected works of Bishop Hall, printed in folio, and dedicated to James the First. The book, I believe, originally appeared in 8vo. 1608[DF]. Of this edition I have in vain endeavoured to procure some information, although I cannot fancy it to be of any peculiar rarity.

The volume contains a dedication to Edward Lord Denny, and James Lord Hay, a premonition of the title and use of characters, the proemes, eleven virtuous characters, and fifteen of a different discription. As Bishop Hall's collected works have so lately appeared in a new edition, and as Mr. Pratt[DG] proposes to add a life of the author in a subsequent volume, I shall forbear giving any specimen from the works or biographical notices of this amiable prelate, recommending the perusal of his excellent productions, to all who admire the combination of sound sense with unaffected devotion.


[DF] See Brand's Sale Catalogue, 8vo. 1807, page 115, No. 3147.

[DG] See the Gentleman's Magazine for October, 1810, LXXXI. 317.

x. Micrologia. Characters, or Essayes, of Persons, Trades, and Places, offered to the City and Country. By R. M. Printed at London by T. C. for Michael Sparke, dwelling at the blue Bible, in Greene Arbor. 1629.

[8vo. containing 56 pages, not numbered.]

The characters in this volume are "A fantasticke taylor; a player; a shooe-maker; a rope-maker; a smith; a tobacconist; a cunning woman; a cobler; a tooth-drawer; a tinker; a fidler; a cunning horse-courser; Bethlem; Ludgate; Bridewell; (and) Newgate."—

"A PLAYER.—(Sign. B. iii.)

Is a volume of various conceits or epitome of time, who by his representation and appearance makes things long past seeme present. He is much like the compters in arithmeticke, and may stand one while for a king, another while a begger, many times as a mute or cypher. Sometimes hee represents that which in his life he scarse practises—to be an honest man. To the point, hee oft personates a rover, and therein comes neerest to himselfe. If his action prefigure passion, he raues, rages, and protests much by his painted heauens, and seemes in the heighth of this fit ready to pull Ioue out of the garret, where pershance hee lies leaning on his elbowes, or is imployed to make squips and crackers to grace the play. His audience are often-times iudicious, but his chiefe admirers are commonly young wanton chamber-maids, who are so taken with his posture and gay clothes, they neuer come to be their owne women after. Hee exasperates men's enormities in publike view, and tels them their faults on the stage, not as being sorry for them, but rather wishes still hee might finde more occasions to worke on. He is the generall corrupter of spirits, yet vntainted, inducing them by gradation to much lasciuious deprauity. He is a perspicuity of vanity in variety, and suggests youth to perpetrate such vices, as otherwise they had haply nere heard of. He is (for the most part) a notable hypocrite, seeming what he is not, and is indeed what hee seemes not. And if hee lose one of his fellow stroules, in the summer he turnes king of the gipsies: if not, some great man's protection is a sufficient warrant for his peregrination, and a meanes to procure him the town-hall, where hee may long exercise his qualities, with clown-claps of great admiration, in a tone sutable to the large eares of his illiterate auditorie. Hee is one seldome takes care for old age, because ill diet and disorder, together with a consumption, or some worse disease, taken vp in his full careere, haue onely chalked out his catastrophe but to a colon: and he scarsely suruiues to his naturall period of dayes."

xi. Whimzies: Or, A new Cast of Characters. Nova, non nota delectant. London, Printed by F. K. and are to be sold by Ambrose Rithirdon, at the signe of the Bull's-head, in Paul's Church-yard. 1631.

[12mo. containing in all, pp. 280.]

The dedication to this volume, which is inscribed to sir Alexander Radcliffe, is signed "Clitus—Alexandrinus;" the author's real name I am unable to discover. It contains twenty-four characters[DH], besides "A cater-character, throwne out of a boxe by an experienced gamester[DI];" and some lines "vpon the birth-day of his sonne Iohn," of which the first-will be sufficient to satisfy all curiosity.

"God blesse thee, Iohn, And make thee such an one That I may ioy in calling thee my son.

Thou art my ninth, and by it I divine That thou shalt live to love the Muses nine."—&c. &c.


Is a state newes-monger; and his owne genius is his intelligencer. His mint goes weekely, and he coines monie by it. Howsoeuer, the more intelligent merchants doe jeere him, the vulgar doe admire him, holding his novels oracular: and these are usually sent for tokens or intermissiue curtsies betwixt city and countrey. Hee holds most constantly one forme or method of discourse. He retaines some militarie words of art, which hee shootes at randome; no matter where they hitt, they cannot wound any. He ever leaves some passages doubtfull, as if they were some more intimate secrecies of state, clozing his sentence abruptly with—heereafter you shall heare more. Which words, I conceive, he onely useth as baites, to make the appetite of the reader more eager in his next week's pursuit for a more satisfying labour. Some generall-erring relations he pickes up, as crummes or fragments, from a frequented ordinarie: of which shreads he shapes a cote to fit any credulous foole that will weare it. You shall never observe him make any reply in places of publike concourse; hee ingenuously acknowledges himselfe to bee more bounden to the happinesse of a retentive memory, than eyther ability of tongue, or pregnancy of conceite. He carryes his table-booke still about with him, but dares not pull it out publikely. Yet no sooner is the table drawne, than he turnes notarie; by which meanes hee recovers the charge of his ordinarie. Paules is his walke in winter; Moorfields[DJ] in sommer. Where the whole discipline, designes, projects, and exploits of the States, Netherlands, Poland, Switzer, Crimchan and all, are within the compasse of one quadrangle walke most judiciously and punctually discovered. But long he must not walke, lest hee make his newes-presse stand. Thanks to his good invention, he can collect much out of a very little: no matter though more experienced judgements disprove him; hee is anonymos, and that wil secure him. To make his reports more credible or, (which he and his stationer onely aymes at,) more vendible, in the relation of every occurrent he renders you the day of the moneth; and to approve himselfe a scholler, he annexeth these Latine parcells, or parcell-gilt sentences, veteri stylo, novo stylo. Palisados, parapets, counterscarfes, forts, fortresses, rampiers, bulwarks, are his usual dialect. Hee writes as if he would doe some mischiefe, yet the charge of his shot is but paper. Hee will sometimes start in his sleepe, as one affrighted with visions, which I can impute to no other cause but to the terrible skirmishes which he discoursed of in the day-time. He has now tyed himselfe apprentice to the trade of minting, and must weekly performe his taske, or (beside the losse which accrues to himselfe,) he disappoints a number of no small fooles, whose discourse, discipline, and discretion, is drilled from his state-service. These you shall know by their Mondai's morning question, a little before Exchange time; Stationer, have you any newes? Which they no sooner purchase than peruse; and, early by next morning, (lest their countrey friend should be deprived of the benefit of so rich a prize,) they freely vent the substance of it, with some illustrations, if their understanding can furnish them that way. He would make you beleeve that hee were knowne to some forraine intelligence, but I hold him the wisest man that hath the least faith to beleeve him. For his relations he stands resolute, whether they become approved, or evinced for untruths; which if they bee, hee has contracted with his face never to blush for the matter. Hee holds especiall concurrence with two philosophicall sects, though hee bee ignorant of the tenets of either: in the collection of his observations, he is peripateticall, for hee walkes circularly; in the digestion of his relations he is Stoicall, and sits regularly. Hee has an alphabeticall table of all the chiefe commanders, generals, leaders, provinciall townes, rivers, ports, creekes, with other fitting materials to furnish his imaginary building. Whisperings, muttrings, and bare suppositions, are sufficient grounds for the authoritie of his relations. It is strange to see with what greedinesse this ayrie Chameleon, being all lungs and winde, will swallow a receite of newes, as if it were physicall: yea, with what frontlesse insinuation he will scrue himselfe into the acquaintance of some knowing Intelligencers, who, trying the cask by his hollow sound, do familiarly gull him. I am of opinion, were all his voluminous centuries of fabulous relations compiled, they would vye in number with the Iliads of many forerunning ages. You shall many times finde in his Gazettas, pasquils, and corrantos miserable distractions; here a city taken by force long before it bee besieged; there a countrey laid waste before ever the enemie entered. He many times tortures his readers with impertinencies, yet are these the tolerablest passages throughout all his discourse. He is the very landskip of our age. He is all ayre; his eare alwayes open to all reports, which, how incredible soever, must passe for currant, and find vent, purposely to get him currant money, and delude the vulgar. Yet our best comfort is, his chymeras live not long; a weeke is the longest in the citie, and after their arrival, little longer in the countrey; which past, they melt like Butter, or match a pipe, and so Burne[DK]. But indeede, most commonly it is the height of their ambition to aspire to the imployment of stopping mustard-pots, or wrapping up pepper, pouder, staves-aker, &c. which done, they expire. Now for his habit, Wapping and Long-lane will give him his character. Hee honours nothing with a more indeered observance, nor hugges ought with more intimacie than antiquitie, which he expresseth even in his cloathes. I have knowne some love fish best that smelled of the panyer; and the like humour reignes in him, for hee loves that apparele best that has a taste of the broker. Some have held him for a scholler, but trust mee such are in a palpable errour, for hee never yet understood so much Latine as to construe Gallo-Belgicus. For his librarie (his owne continuations excepted,) it consists of very few or no bookes. He holds himselfe highly engaged to his invention if it can purchase him victuals; for authors hee never converseth with them, unlesse they walke in Paules. For his discourse it is ordinarie, yet hee will make you a terrible repetition of desperate commanders, unheard of exployts; intermixing withall his owne personall service. But this is not in all companies, for his experience hath sufficiently informed him in this principle—that as nothing workes more on the simple than things strange and incredibly rare; so nothing discovers his weaknesse more among the knowing and judicious than to insist, by way of discourse, on reports above conceite. Amongst these, therefore, hee is as mute as a fish. But now imagine his lampe (if he be worth one,) to be neerely burnt out; his inventing genius wearied and surfoote with raunging over so many unknowne regions; and himselfe, wasted with the fruitlesse expence of much paper, resigning his place of weekly collections to another, whom, in hope of some little share, hee has to his stationer recommended, while he lives either poorely respected, or dyes miserably suspended. The rest I end with his owne cloze:—Next weeke you shall heare more."


[DH] An almanack-maker; a ballad-monger; a corranto-coiner; a decoy; an exchange man; a forrester; a gamester; an hospitall-man; a iayler; a keeper; a launderer; a metall man; a neuter; an ostler; a post-master: a quest-man; a ruffian; a sailor; a trauller; an vnder sheriffe; a wine-soaker; a Xantippean; a yealous neighbour; a zealous brother.

[DI] This cater-character, which possesses a separate title page, contains delineations of an apparator; a painter; a pedler; and a piper.

[DJ] Moorfields were a general promenade for the citizens of London, during the summer months. The ground was left to the city by Mary and Catherine, daughters of sir William Fines, a Knight of Rhodes, in the reign of Edward the Confessor. Richard Johnson, a poetaster of the sixteenth century, published in 1607, The Pleasant Walkes of Moore-fields. Being the Guift of two Sisters, now beautified, to the continuing fame of this worthy Citty. 4to. black-letter, of which Mr. Gough, (Brit. Topog.) who was ignorant of the above, notices an impression in 1617.

[DK] This is certainly intended as a pun upon the names of two news-venders or corranto-coiners of the day. Nathaniel Butter, the publisher of "The certain Newes of this present Week," lived at the Pyde-Bull, St. Austin's-gate, and was the proprietor of several of the intelligencers, from 1622 to about 1640. Nicholas Bourne was a joint partner with Butter in The Sweedish Intelligencer, 4to. Lond. 1632.

xii. Picturae loquentes: or Pictures drawne forth in Characters. With a Poeme of a Maid. By Wye Saltonstall. Ne sutor ultra crepidam. London: Printed by T. Coles, &c. 1631. 12mo.

I have copied the above title from an article in the Censura Literaria[DL], communicated by Mr. Park, of whose copious information, and constant accuracy on every subject connected with English literature, the public have many specimens before them.

Saltonstall's[DM] Characters, &c. reached a second edition in 1635. A copy of this rare volume is in the possession of Mr. Douce, who, with his accustomed liberality, permitted my able and excellent friend, Mr. John James Park, to draw up the following account of it for the present volume.

To "The Epistle dedicatory" of this impression, the initials (or such like) of dedicatee's name only are given, for, says the dedicator, "I know no fame can redound unto you by these meane essayes, which were written, Ocium magis foventes, quam studentes gloriae, as sheapheards play upon their oaten pipes, to recreate themselves, not to get credit."

"To the Reader.—Since the title is the first leafe that cometh under censure, some, perhaps, will dislike the name of pictures, and say, I have no colour for it, which I confesse, for these pictures are not drawne in colours, but in characters, representing to the eye of the minde divers severall professions, which, if they appeare more obscure than I coulde wish, yet I would have you know that it is not the nature of a character, to be as smooth as a bull-rush, but to have some fast and loose knots, which the ingenious reader may easily untie. The first picture is the description of a maide, which young men may read, and from thence learn to know, that vertue is the truest beauty. The next follow in their order, being set together in this little book, that in winter you may reade them ad ignem, by the fire-side, and in summer ad umbram, under some shadie tree, and therewith passe away the tedious howres. So hoping of thy favourable censure, knowing that the least judicious are most ready to judge, I expose them to thy view, with Apelles motto, Ne sutor, ultra crepidam. Lastly, whether you like them, or leave them, yet the author bids you welcome.

"Thine as mine,


The Original Characters are,

1. The world. 2. An old man. 3. A woman. 4. A widdow. 5. A true lover. 6. A countrey bride. 7. A plowman. 8. A melancholy man. 9. A young heire. 10. A scholler in the university. 11. A lawyer's clarke. 12. A townsman in Oxford. 13. An usurer. 14. A wandering rogue. 15. A waterman. 16. A shepheard. 17. A jealous man. 18. A chamberlaine. 19. A mayde. 20. A bayley. 21. A countrey fayre. 22. A countrey alehouse. 23. A horse-race. 24. A farmer's daughter. 25. A keeper. 26. A gentleman's house in the countrey.

The Additions to the second Edition are,

27. A fine dame. 28. A country dame. 29. A gardiner. 30. A captaine. 31. A poore village. 32. A merry man. 33. A scrivener. 34. The tearme. 35. A mower. 36. A happy man. 37. An arrant knave. 38. An old waiting gentlewoman.


Is a time when Justice keeps open court for all commers, while her sister Equity strives to mitigate the rigour of her positive sentence. It is called the Tearme, because it does end and terminate busines, or else because it is the Terminus ad quem, that is, the end of the countrey man's journey, who comes up to the Tearme, and with his hobnayle shooes grindes the faces of the poore stones, and so returnes againe. It is the soule of the yeare, and makes it quicke, which before was dead. Inkeepers gape for it as earnestly as shelfish doe for salt water after a low ebbe. It sends forth new bookes into the world, and replenishes Paul's walke with fresh company, where Quid novi? is their first salutation, and the weekely newes their chiefe discourse. The tavernes are painted against the tearme, and many a cause is argu'd there and try'd at that barre, where you are adjudg'd to pay the costs and charges, and so dismist with 'welcome gentlemen.' Now the citty puts her best side outward, and a new play at the Blackfryers is attended on with coaches. It keepes watermen from sinking and helpes them with many a fare voyage to Westminster. Your choyse beauties come up to it onely to see and be seene, and to learne the newest fashion, and for some other recreations. Now monie that has beene long sicke and crasie, begins to stirre and walke abroad, especially if some young prodigalls come to towne, who bring more money than wit. Lastly, the tearme is the joy of the citty, a deare friend to countrymen, and is never more welcome than after a long vacation."


[DL] Vol. 5, p. 372. Mr. Park says that the plan of the characters was undoubtedly derived from that of Overbury, but, he adds, the execution is greatly superior. Four stanzas from the poem entitled, A Maid, are printed in the same volume.

[DM] An account of the author may be found in the Athenae Oxon. Vol. 1. col. 640.

xiii. London and Country corbonadoed and quartered into seuerall Characters. By Donald Lupton, 8vo. 1632.

[See British Bibliographer, i. 464; and Brand's Sale Catalogue, page 66, No. 1754.]

xiv. Character of a Gentleman, appended to Brathwait's English Gentleman, 4to. London, by Felix Kyngston, &c. 1633.

xv. "A strange Metamorphosis of Man, transformed into a Wildernesse. Deciphered in Characters. London, Printed by Thomas Harper, and are to be sold by Lawrence Chapman at his shop in Holborne, 1634."

[12mo. containing pp. 296, not numbered.]

This curious little volume has been noticed by Mr. Haslewood, in the Censura Literaria (vii. 284.) who says, with justice, that a rich vein of humour and amusement runs through it, and that it is the apparent lucubration of a pen able to perform better things. Of the author's name I have been unable to procure the least intelligence.

"THE HORSE (No. 16.)

Is a creature made, as it were, in waxe. When Nature first framed him, she took a secret complacence in her worke. He is even her master-peece in irracionall things, borrowing somewhat of all things to set him forth. For example, his slicke bay coat hee tooke from the chesnut; his necke from the rainbow, which perhaps make him rain so wel. His maine belike he took from Pegasus, making him a hobbie to make this a compleat gennet[DN], which main he weares so curld, much after the women's fashions now adayes; this I am sure of howsoever, it becomes them, [and] it sets forth our gennet well. His legges he borrowed of the hart, with his swiftnesse, which makes him a true courser indeed. The starres in his forehead hee fetcht from heaven, which will not be much mist, there being so many. The little head he hath, broad breast, fat buttocke, and thicke tayle are properly his owne, for he knew not where to get him better. If you tell him of the hornes he wants to make him most compleat, he scornes the motion, and sets them at his heele. He is well shod especially in the upper leather, for as for his soles, they are much at reparation, and often faine to be removed. Nature seems to have spent an apprentiship of yeares to make you such a one, for it is full seven yeares ere hee comes to this perfection, and be fit for the saddle: for then (as we,) it seemes to come to the yeares of discretion, when he will shew a kinde of rationall judgement with him, and if you set an expert rider on his backe, you shall see how sensiblie they will talke together, as master and scholler. When he shall be no sooner mounted and planted in the seat with the reins in one hand, a switch in the other, and speaking with his spurres in the horse's flankes, a language he wel understands, but he shall prance, curvet, and dance the canaries[DO] halfe an houre together in compasse of a bushell, and yet still, as he thinkes, get some ground, shaking the goodly plume on his head with a comely pride. This will our Bucephalus do in the lists: but when hee comes abroad into the fields, hee will play the countrey gentleman as truly, as before the knight in turnament. If the game be up once, and the hounds in chase, you shall see how he will pricke up his eares streight, and tickle at the sport as much as his rider shall, and laugh so loud, that if there be many of them, they will even drowne the rurall harmony of the dogges. When he travels, of all innes he loves best the signe of the silver bell, because likely there he fares best, especially if hee come the first, and get the prize. He carries his eares upright, nor seldome ever lets them fall till they be cropt off, and after that, as in despight, will never weare them more. His taile is so essentiall to him, that if he loose it once hee is no longer an horse, but ever stiled a curtall. To conclude, he is a blade of Vulcan's forging, made for Mars of the best metall, and the post of Fame to carrie her tidings through the world, who, if he knew his own strength, would shrewdly put for the monarchie of our wildernesse."


[DN] Mr. Steevens, in a note to Othello, explains a jennet to be a Spanish horse; but from the passage just given, I confess it appears to me to mean somewhat more. Perhaps a jennet was a horse kept solely for pleasure, whose mane was suffered to grow to a considerable length, and was then ornamented with platting, &c.—A hobby might answer to what we now term a hogged poney.

[DO] The Canaries is the name of an old dance, freqnently alluded to in our early English plays. Shakspeare uses it in All's well that ends well

——"I have seen a medicine, That's able to breathe life into a stone; Quicken a rock, and make you dance canary With spritely fire and motion;"

Sir John Hawkins, in his History of Musick, iv. 391. says that it occurs in the opera of Dioclesian, set to music by Purcell, and explains it to be "a very sprightly movement of two reprises, or strains, with eight bars in each: the time three quarters in a bar, the first pointed." I take this opportunity of mentioning, that among Dr. Rawlinson's MSS. in the Bodleian, [Poet. 108.] is a volume which contains a variety of figures of old dances, written, as I conjecture, between the years 1566 and 1580. Besides several others are the pavyan; my Lord of Essex measures; tyntermell; the old allmayne; the longe pavian; quanto dyspayne; the nyne muses, &c. As the pavian is mentioned by Shakspeare, in the Merry Wives of Windsor, and as the directions for dancing the figure have not been before discovered, I shall make no apology for offering them in the present note.


ij singles, a duble forward; ij singles syde, a duble forward; repīnce backe once, ij singles syde, a duble forward, one single backe twyse, ij singles, a duble forward, ij singles syde, prerince backe once; ij singles syde, a duble forward, reprince backe twyse."

xvi. The true Character of an untrue Bishop; with a Recipe at the end how to recover a Bishop if hee were lost. London, printed in the yeare 1641[DP].

[4to. pp. 10, besides title.]


[DP] I have a faint recollection of a single character in a rare volume, entitled "A Boulster Lecture," &c. Lond. 1640.

xvii. Character of a Projector, by —— Hogg. 4to. 1642.

xviii. Character of an Oxford Incendiary. Printed for Robert White in 1643. 4to.

[Reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, V. 469. edit. 1744.]

xix. The Reformado precisely charactered (with a frontispiece.)

[See the Sale Catalogue of George Steevens, Esq. 8vo. Lond. 1800. page 66. No. 1110.]

xx. "A new Anatomie, or Character of a Christian or Round-head. Expressing his Description, Excellencie, Happiness and Innocencie. Wherein may appear how far this blind world is mistaken in their unjust Censures of him. Virtus in Arduis. Proverbs xii. 26; and Jude 10, quoted.) Imprimatur John Downame. London, Printed for Robert Leybourne, and are to be sold at the Star, under Peter's Church in Corn-hill, 1645. 8vo. pp. 13.

[In Ashmole's Museum.]

xxi. In Lord North's Forest of Varieties, London, Printed by Richard Cotes, 1645, are several Characters, as lord Orford informs us, "in the manner of sir Thomas Overbury." Royal and Noble Authors, iii. 82. Of this volume a second edition appeared in 1659, neither of these, however, I have been able to meet with. For some account of the work, with extracts, see Brydges' Memoirs of the Peers of England, 8vo. London. 1802. page 343.

xxii. Characters and Elegies[DQ]. By Francis Wortley, Knight and Baronet. Printed in the yeere 1646." 4to.

The characters are as follow:

1. The character of his royall majestie; 2. The character of the queene's majestie; 3. The hopeful prince; 4. A true character of the illustrious James Duke of York; 5. The character of a noble general; 6. A true English protestant; 7. An antinomian, or anabaptisticall independent; 8. A jesuite; 9. The true character of a northerne lady, as she is wife, mother, and sister; 10. The politique neuter; 11. The citie paragon; 12. A sharking committee-man; 13. Britanicus his pedigree—a fatall prediction of his end; 14. The Phoenix of the Court.

Britanicus his Pedigree—a fatall Prediction of his End.

I dare affirme him a Jew by descent, and of the tribe of Benjamin, lineally descended from the first King of the Jewes, even Saul, or at best he ownes him and his tribe, in most we reade of them. First, of our English tribes, I conceive his father's the lowest, and the meanest of that tribe, stocke, or generation, and the worst, how bad soever they be; melancholy he is, as appeares by his sullen and dogged wit; malicious as Saul to David, as is evident in his writings; he wants but Saul's javelin to cast at him; he as little spares the king's friends with his pen, as Saul did Jonathan his sonne in his reproach; and would be as free of his javelin as his pen, were his power sutable to his will, as Ziba did to Mephibosheth, so does he by the king, he belies him as much to the world, as he his master to David, and in the day of adversitie is as free of his tongue as Shimei was to his soveraigne, and would be as humble as he, and as forward to meet the king as he was David, should the king returne in peace. Abithaes there cannot want to cut off the dog's head, but David is more mercifull then Shimei can be wicked; may he first consult with the witch of Endor, but not worthy of so noble a death as his own sword, die the death of Achitophel for feare of David, then may he be hang'd up as the sonnes of Saul were against the sunne, or rather as the Amelekites who slew Isbosheth, and brought tidings and the tokens of the treason to David; may his hands and his feet be as sacrifices cut off, and so pay for the treasons of his pen and tongue; may all heads that plot treasons, all tongues that speake them, all pens that write them, be so punisht. If Sheba paid his head for his tongue's fault, what deserves Britannicus to pay for his pen and trumpet? Is there never a wise woman in London? we have Abishaes.

* * * * *

Francis Wortley, was the son of Sir Richard Wortley, of Wortley, in Yorkshire, knight. At the age of seventeen he became a commoner of Magdalen College, Oxford; in 1610 he was knighted, and on the 29th of June in the following year, was created a baronet; being then, as Wood says, esteemed an ingenious gentleman. During the civil wars he assisted the royal cause, by raising a troop of horse in the king's service; but at their conclusion he was taken prisoner, and confined in the tower of London, where it seems he composed the volume just noticed. In the Catalogue of Compounders his name appears as "of Carleton, Yorkshire," and from thence we learn that he paid 500l. for his remaining property. In the Athenae Oxonienses may be found a list of his works, but I have been unable to trace the date of his decease. Mr. Granger says that "Anne, his daughter, married the second son of the first Earl of Sandwich, who took the name of Wortley," and adds that the late Countess of Bute was descended from him. Biographical History, ii. 310.


[DQ] The Elegies, according to Wood, are upon the loyalists who lost their lives in the king's service, at the end of which are epitaphs.

xxiii. The Times anatomiz'd, in severall Characters. By T. F[ord, seruant to Mr. Sam. Man[DR].] Difficile est Satyram non scribere. Juv. Sat. 1. London, Printed for W. L. Anno 1647."

[12mo. in the British Museum.]

The Contents of the severall Characters.

1. A good king. 2. Rebelion. 3. An honest subject. 4. An hypocritical convert of the times. 5. A souldier of fortune. 6. A discontented person. 7. An ambitious man. 8. The vulgar. 9. Errour. 10. Truth. 11. A selfe-seeker. 12. Pamphlets. 13. An envious man. 14. True valour. 15. Time. 16. A newter. 17. A turn-coat. 18. A moderate man. 19. A corrupt committee-man. 20. A sectary. 21. Warre. 22. Peace. 23. A drunkard. 24. A novice-preacher. 25. A scandalous preacher. 26. A grave divine. 27. A selfe-conceited man. 29. Religion. 30. Death.


Are the weekly almanacks, shewing what weather is in the state, which, like the doves of Aleppo, carry news to every part of the kingdom. They are the silent traytors that affront majesty, and abuse all authority, under the colour of an Imprimatur. Ubiquitary flies that have of late so blistered the eares of all men, that they cannot endure any solid truth. The ecchoes, whereby what is done in part of the kingdome, is heard all over. They are like the mushromes, sprung up in a night, and dead in a day; and such is the greedinesse of men's natures (in these Athenian dayes) of new, that they will rather feigne then want it."


[DR] (MS. interlineation in a copy among the King's pamphlets.)

xxiv. Character of a London Diurnal, 4to. 1647. [This was written by Cleveland, and has been printed in the various editions of his poems.]

xxv. Character of an Agitator. Printed in the Yeare 1647. 4to. pp. 7.

This concludes with the following epitome—"Hee was begotten of Lilburne (with Overton's helpe) in Newgate, nursed up by Cromwell, at first by the army, tutored by Mr. Peters, counselled by Mr. Walwin and Musgarve, patronised by Mr. Martin, (who sometimes sits in counsell with them, though a member) and is like to dye no where but at Tyburne, and that speedily, if hee repent not and reforme his erronious judgement, and his seditious treasonable practises against king, parliament, and martiall discipline itselfe. Finis."

xxvi. In Mr. Brand's Sale Catalogue, No. 1754, we have The Surfeit to A.B.C. 8vo. Lond. 1656, which is there represented to consist of Characters.

xxvii. Characters of a Temporizer and an Antiquary. [In "Naps upon Parnassus," 8vo. 1658. See the Censura Literaria, vol. vi. p. 225; vol. vii. p. 341.]

xxviii. Satyrical Characters, and handsom Descriptions, in Letters, 8vo. 1658. [Catalogue of Thomas Britton the Small Coal Man, 4to, p. 19. No. 102.]

xxix. A Character of England, as it was lately presented in a Letter to a Noble-man of France. With Reflections upon Gallus Castratus. The third Edition. London. Printed for John Crooke, and are to be sold at the Ship in St. Paul's Church-Yard, 1659.

(12mo. pp. 66, title and preface 20 more.)

This very severe satire upon the English nation was replied to in the following publication.

xxx. A Character of France, to which is added Gallus Castratus, or an Answer to a late slanderous Pamphlet, called the Character of England. Si talia nefanda et facinora quis non Democritus? London, Printed for Nath. Brooke, at the Angel in Cornhill, 1659.

xxxi. A perfect Description of the People and Country of Scotland. London. Printed for J. S. 1659.

(12mo. pp. 21. besides the title.)

xxxii. A brief Character of the Low Countries under the States, being Three Weeks Observation of the Vices and Vertues of the Inhabitants. Non seria semper. London, printed for H. S. and are to be sold by H. Lowndes, at the White Lion in St. Paul's Church Yard, neer the little North Door, 1659.

(12mo. pp. 500. title, &c. 6 more.)

Written by Owen Feltham, and appended to the several folio editions of his Resolves.

xxxiii. The Character of Italy: Or, The Italian Anatomiz'd by an English Chirurgion. Difficile est Satyram non scribere. London: Printed for Nath. Brooke, at the Angel in Cornhil. 1660.

[12mo. pp. 93, title and preface 12 more.]

xxxiv. The Character of Spain: Or, An Epitome of Their Virtues and Vices.

—— Adeo sunt multa, loquacem Ut lassare queant Fabium.

London: Printed for Nath. Brooke, at the Angel in Cornhil. 1660.

[12mo. pp. 93, title, &c. 12 more.]

xxxv. Essayes and Characters, by L. G. 8vo. 1661.

[See Brand's Sale Catalogue, No. 1754.]

xxxvi. The Assembly-man. Written in the Year 1647. London: Printed for Richard Marriot, and are to be sold at his shop under St. Dunstan's Church, in Fleet-street, 1662-3[DS].

[4to. pp. 22.]

Sir John Birkenhead was the author of this character, which was printed again in 1681, and in 1704 with the following title, "The Assembly-man. Written in the Year 1647; but proves the true character of (Cerberus) the observator, MDCCIV." It was also reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, v. 93. For an account of the author, see the Biographia Britannica, edit. Kippis, ii. 324.


[DS] With a very curious and rare frontispiece.

xxxvii. Fifty-five[DT] Enigmatical Characters, all very exactly drawn to the Life, from several Persons, Humours, Dispositions. Pleasant and full of Delight. By R. F. Esq.; London: Printed for William Crook, at the sign of the Three Bibles on Fleet-bridge. 1665[DU]."

[8vo. pp. 135, title, index, &c. not numbered, 11 more.]

Richard Flecknoe, the author of these characters, is more known from having his name affixed to one of the severest satires ever written by Dryden, than from any excellence of his own as a poet or dramatic writer. Mr. Reed conceives him to have been a Jesuit, and Pope terms him an Irish priest. Langbaine says, that "his acquaintance with the nobility was more than with the muses, and he had a greater propensity to rhyming, than a genius to poetry." As a proof of the former assertion the Duke of Newcastle prefixed two copies of verses to his characters, in which he calls Flecknoe "his worthy friend," and says:

"Flecknoe, thy characters are so full of wit And fancy, as each word is throng'd with it. Each line's a volume, and who reads would swear Whole libraries were in each character. Nor arrows in a quiver stuck, nor yet Lights in the starry skies are thicker set, Nor quills upon the armed porcupine, Than wit and fancy in this work of thine.

W. Newcastle."

To confirm the latter, requires only the perusal of his verses, which were published in 1653, under the title of Miscellania. Besides these, he wrote five[DV] dramatic pieces, the titles of which may be found in the Biographia Dramatica; a collection of Epigrams, 8vo. 1670; Ten Years Travels in Europe.—A short Discourse of the English Stage, affixed to Love's Dominion, 8vo. 1654; The Idea of his Highness Oliver, late Lord Protector, &c. 8vo. 1659. &c. &c.[DW]


"He is onely a man; your coward and rash being but tame and savage beasts. His courage is still the same, and drink cannot make him more valiant, nor danger lesse. His valour is enough to leaven whole armies, he is an army himself worth an army of other men. His sword is not alwayes out like children's daggers, but he is alwayes last in beginning quarrels, though first in ending them. He holds honour (though delicate as chrystall) yet not so slight and brittle to be broak and crackt with every touch; therefore (though most wary of it,) is not querilous nor punctilious. He is never troubled with passion, as knowing no degree beyond clear courage, and is alwayes valiant, but never furious. He is the more gentle i' th' chamber, more fierce he's in the field, holding boast (the coward's valour,) and cruelty (the beast's,) unworthy a valiant man. He is only coward in this, that he dares not do an unhandsome action. In fine, he can onely be evercome by discourtesie, and has but one deffect—he cannot talk much—to recompence which he dos the more."


[DT] I omit to particularize these characters, as many of the titles are extremely long—"of a lady of excellent conversation. Of one that is the foyle of good conversation." &c. &c.

[DU] Mr. Reed possessed a copy, dated in 1658. See his Catalogue, No. 2098.

[DV] Langbaine notices a prologue intended for a play, called The Physician against his Will, which he thinks was never published. A MS. note in my copy of the Dramatic Poets, says it was printed in 1712.

[DW] The Bodleian library contains "The Affections of a pious Soule, unto our Saviour-Christ. Expressed in a mixed treatise of verse and prose. By Richard Flecknoe." 8vo. 1640. This I can scarcely consent to give to Mac Flecknoe, as in the address "To the Town Reader," the author informs us that, "ashamed of the many idle hours he has spent, and to avoid the expence of more, he has retired from the town"—and we are certain that Mac resided there long after.

xxxviii. The Character of a Coffee-house, with the symptoms of a Town-witt. With Allowance. April 11, 1673. London, Printed for Jonathan Edwin, at the Three Roses in Ludgate-street, 1673.

[Folio, reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, with an answer to it, vol. vi. 429-433.]

xxxix. Essays of Love and Marriage: Being Letters written by two Gentlemen, one dissuading from Love, the other an Answer thereunto. With some Characters, and other Passages of Wit.

—— Si quando gravabere curis, Haec lege, pro moestae medicamine mentis habeto.

London, Printed for H. Brome, at the Gun in St. Paul's Church-yard, 1673.

[12mo. pp. 103, title, &c. 4 more.]

xl. The Character of a Fanatick. By a Person of Quality. London. 1675.

[4to. pp. 8. Reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, vii. 596.]

xli. Character of a Towne Gallant } of a Towne Miss } of an honest drunken Curr } of a pilfering Taylor } of an Exchange Wench } of a Sollicitor } 1675. of a Scold } of an ill Husband } of a Dutchman } of a Pawnbroker } of a Tally Man }

[4to. See Sale Catalogue of George Steevens, Esq. 8vo. London, 1800, page 66, No. 1110.]

xlii. A Whip for a Jockey: or, a Character of an Horse-courser. 1677. London, Printed for R. H. 1677.

[8vo. pp. 29.]

xliii. Four for a Penny, or Poor Robin's Character of an unconscionable Pawnbroker, and Ear-mark of an oppressing Tally-man; with a friendly Description of a Bum-bailey, and his merciless setting cur, or follower. With Allowance. London, Printed for L. C. 1678.

[4to. reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, vol. iv. p. 141.]

xliv. Character of an ugly Woman: or, a Hue and Cry after Beauty, in prose, written (by the Duke of Buckingham) in 1678. See Lord Orford's Royal and Noble Authors, by Park, iii. 309.

xlv. Character of a disbanded Courtier. Ingenium Galbae male habitat. 1681.

[Folio, pp. 2. Reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, i. 356.]

xlvi. Character of a certain ugly old P——. London, Printed in the Year 1684.

[In Oldham's Works, 8vo. London, 1684.]

xlvii. Twelve ingenious Characters: or pleasant Descriptions of the Properties of sundry Persons and Things, viz.

An importunate dunn; a serjeant or bailiff; a paunbroker; a prison; a tavern; a scold; a bad husband; a town-fop; a bawd; a fair and happy milk-maid; the quack's directory; a young enamourist.

Licensed, June the 2d, 1681. R. P. London, printed for S. Norris, and are to be sold by most booksellers, 1686.

[12mo. pp. 48.]

xlviii. Character of a Trimmer. By Sir William Coventry. 1689.

[4to. See Bibliotheca Harleiana, v. 4278.]

This was written long before publication, as is proved by the following.

xlix. Character of a Tory in 1659, in answer to that of a Trimmer (never published) both written in King Charles's reign.

[Reprinted in the Works of George Villiers, second Duke of Buckingham. 4to. Lond. 1721.]

l. Characters addressed to Ladies of Age. 8vo. Lond. 1689.

[Brand's Sale Catalogue, p. 66, No. 1747.]

li. The Ceremony-monger, his Character, in six Chapters, &c. &c. By E. Hickeringill, Rector of the Rectory of All-Saints, in Colchester. London, Printed and are to be sold by George Larkin, at the Two Swans, without Bishopsgate. 1689.

[4to. pp. 66.]

lii. Character of a Jacobite. 1690.

[4to. See Bibl. Harl. v. No. 4279.]

* * * * *

The following are without date, but were probably printed before 1700[DX].


[DX] In Butler's Remains, published by Thyer, 2 vols. 8vo. 1759, are several Characters by the author of Hudibras, and consequently written previously to this date, but as they do not appear to have been printed so early, they cannot, with propriety, be included in this list.

liii. Character of an Ill-court-favourite, translated from the French.

[4to. reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, ii. 50.]

liv. Character of an honest and worthy Parliament-Man.

[Folio, reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, ii. 336.]

lv. Characterism, or the Modern Age displayed.

[Brand's Sale Catalogue, No. 1757.]

Character of the Presbyterian Pastors and People of Scotland.

[Bibl. Harleiana, v. No. 4280.]

vii. Character of a compleat Physician or Naturalist[DY].

[Bibl. Harleiana, v. No. 4304.]


[DY] In the extracts made from the foregoing series of Characters, the original orthography has been most scrupulously attended to, in order to assist in shewing the progress and variation of the English language.


Page 2, line 18, for ports read sports.

4, line 9, "table-book." The custom of writing in table-books, or, as it was then expressed, "in tables," is noticed, and instances given in Reed's Shakspeare, vi, 13. xii, 170. xviii, 88. Dr. Farmer adduces a passage very applicable to the text, from Hall's character of the hypocrite. "He will ever sit where he may be seene best, and in the midst of the sermon pulles out his tables in haste, as if he feared to loose that note," &c. Decker, in his Guls Hornebooke, page 8, speaking to his readers, says, "out with your tables," &c.

6, note 6.—This is also mentioned in Whimzies, 8vo. 1631, p. 57. "Hee must now betake himself to prayer and devotion; remember the founder, benefactors, head, and members of that famous foundation: all which he performes with as much zeale as an actor after the end of a play, when hee prayes for his majestie, the lords of his most honourable privie councell, and all that love the king."

13, note 10.—From a subsequent edition, obligingly pointed out to me by the rev. Mr. arch-deacon Nares, I find that this also is a translation: Regimen Sanitatis Salerni. This booke teachyng all people to gouerne the in health, is translated out of the Latine tongue into Englishe, by Thomas Paynell, whiche booke is amended, augmented, and diligently imprinted. 1575. Colophon. [P] Jmprynted at London, by Wyllyam How, for Abraham Ueale. The preface says, that it was compiled for the use "of the moste noble and victorious kynge of England, and of Fraunce, by all the doctours in Phisicke of the Uniuersitie of Salerne."

17, line 17, "door-posts."—It was usual for public officers to have painted or gilded posts at their doors, on which proclamations, and other documents of that description, were placed, in order to be read by the populace. See various allusions to this custom, in Reed's Shakspeare, v. 267. Old Plays, iii. 303. The reformation means that they were, in the language of our modern churchwardens, "repaired and beautified," during the reign of our alderman.

45, line 11, for Gollobelgicus read Gallobelgicus.

47, line 15. "post and pair" was a game at cards, of which I can give no description. The author of the Compleat Gamester notices it as "very much played in the West of England." See Dodsley's Old Plays, 1780. vii. 296.

48, line 12—"guarded with more gold lace." The word guarded is continually used by the writers of the sixteenth century for fringed or adorned. See Reed's Shakspeare, vii. 272. Old Plays, iv. 36.

59, line 15, "clout." Shakspeare (Cymbeline, act iv. scene 2.) uses the expression of clouted brogues, which Mr. Steevens explains to be "shoes strengthened with clout or hob-nails."

63, line 9, "dragon that pursued the woman." Evidently an allusion to Revelations, xii. 15.

91, note 8, line 15, for Styla read Hyla in both instances.

92, note 10, line 5, for Leiden read Leyden.

117, line 3, "Their humanity is a leg to the residencer." A leg here signifies a bow. Decker says, "a jewe neuer weares his cap threedbare with putting it off; neuer bends i' th' hammes with casting away a leg, &c." Guls Hornebooke. p. 11.

182, note 1, for spunge read sponge.

208, line 4, for spera read spero.

ib. line 30, for conjesta read congesta.

ib. line 31, for susuperavit read superavit.

231, line 11, for Jude read Inde: for ferucat read ferueat.

245, line 7, for whosc read whose.

Several errors and inaccuracies of less consequence than those here pointed out, will probably be discovered. These were occasioned by the editor's distance from the press, and he requests the gentle reader to pardon and correct them.

The Inscription, No. x. of the Appendix, should have been entirely omitted. The following extract from Guillim's Heraldry, shews that Bishop Earle could not have been connected with the Streglethorp family, since, if he had, there would have been no occasion for a new grant of armorial bearings.

"He beareth ermine, on a chief indented sable, three eastern crowns or, by the name of Earles. This coat was granted by Sir Edward Walker, garter, the 1st of August, 1660, to the Reverend Dr. John Earles, son of Thomas Earles, gent, sometime Register of the Archbishop's Court at York. He was Dean of Westminster, and Clerk of the Closet to his Majesty King Charles the Second; and in the year 1663, made Bishop of Salisbury."

Guillim's Heraldry, folio. Lond. 1724. p. 282.

It is almost unnecessary to add that I was not aware of this grant, when I compiled the short account of Earle, at page 186, and spoke of my inability to give any information relative to his parents.


Abishaes, 266.

Abithaes, 266.

Abraham-man, 221.

Achitophel, 266.

Acquaintance, Character of, 144.

Aeneas, 147.

Affected man, character of, 169.

Affections of a pious Soule, by Richard Flecknoe, 273.

Alderman, character of, 16.

Aleppo, 268.

Alexis of Piedmont, 12.

Alfred, king, 4.

Allmayne, 262.

All's well that ends well, by Shakspeare, 262.

Allot, Robert, li.

Almanack in the bones, 37.

Alresford, Hampshire, 211.

Ames, Mr. lx, 220, 228.

Amsterdam, 90.

Anatomy of Melancholly, by Burton, 46, 73, 228.

Angglear, 221.

Antem-morte, 222.

Antiquary, character of, 20.

Aristophanes, 205.

Aristotle, 9, 30.

Arminian, 30.

Arminius, 114.

Ashmole's Museum, Oxford, 198, 264.

Atkinson, Mr. 211.

Atkyns, Sir Robert, 40.

Athenae Oxonienses, by Wood, l, 212, 257, 267.

Attorney, character of, 93.

Austin, 113.

Awdeley, John, 228.

Baal, priests of, 87.

Babel, tower of, 21, 104.

Bagster, Richard, 213.

Baker, character of a, 111.

Bales, Peter, 5.

Bardolph, 105.

Barnes, John, 74.

Barnes, Juliana, 50.

Barrington, Daines, 32.

Barton, Elizabeth, 109.

Barwick, Dr. 191. Life of, 191.

Bawdy-basket, 222.

Bayle, 91.

Beaumont, Francis, 197, 203, 204, 205.

Beau's Duel, by Mrs. Centlivre, 82.

Bedford, Earl of, 12.

Bellarmine, Cardinal, 6, 90.

Belman of London, by Decker, 221. Copy, with Burton's MS. notes, 228.

Benar, 227.

Bene, 225.

Benjamin, 265.

Benjamin's mess, 109.

Bessus, 205.

Bethlem, 249.

Bible, printed at Geneva, 3.

Bibliographia Poetica, by Ritson, 237.

Bibliotheca Harleiana, 276, 277, 278.

Biographia Britannica, 271.

Biographia Dramatica, 272.

Birkenhead, Sir John, 271.

Bishopstone, 188, 190.

Blackfriar's, play at, 259.

Blomefield's History of Norfolk, 217.

Blount, Edward, xlix, l, li, lx.

Blount, Ralph, lx.

Blunt man, character of, 119.

Bobadil, 105.

Bodleian Library, Oxford, 73, 198, 199, 228, 231, 262, 273.

Boke of hawkynge, huntynge, and fysshinge, 50.

Bold forward man, character of, 108.

Bong, 227.

Books, mode of placing them in old libraries, 66.

Bord, 226.

Borgia, 79.

Bouge, 225.

Boulster, Lecture, 263.

Bourne, Nicholas, 255.

Bouse, 225, 226.

Bousing-ken, 227.

Bowl-alley, character of, 76.

Brachigraphy, 5.

Brand, Mr. 230, 260, 269, 271, 277, 278.

Bread used in England in the sixteenth century, 47.

Breeches, 3.

Breton, captain, 237.

Breton, Nicholas, 14, 198, 236, 237. Life of, 237

Breton's Longing, 237.

Bridewell, 249.

Britannicus, his pedigree, 265.

British Bibliographer, by Brydges, 228, 260.

British Museum, li, 267.

British Topography, by Gough, an addition to, 253.

Britton, Thomas, 269.

Brownist, 87.

Brydges, Sir Samuel Egerton, 228, 237, 264.

Bucephalus, 262.

Bukingham, duke of, 199, 276, 277.

Bullen, earl of, 163.

Burford, Oxfordshire, 211.

Burroughs, Sir John, 197. Lines on, 199, 200.

Burton, Robert, 46, 73, 228.

Butler, Samuel, 277.

Butter, Nathaniel, 255.

Buttery, 127.

Byng, 227.

C. F. 232.

Caeling cheat, 226.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5     Next Part
Home - Random Browse