PART III

CANTO I

THE ARGUMENT
------------------------------------------------- The Knight and Squire resolve, at once, The one the other to renounce. They both approach the Lady's Bower; The Squire t'inform, the Knight to woo her. She treats them with a Masquerade, By Furies and Hobgoblins made; From which the Squire conveys the Knight, And steals him from himself, by Night. ------------------------------------------------- 'Tis true, no lover has that pow'r T' enforce a desperate amour, As he that has two strings t' his bow, And burns for love and money too; For then he's brave and resolute, 5 Disdains to render in his suit, Has all his flames and raptures double, And hangs or drowns with half the trouble, While those who sillily pursue, The simple, downright way, and true, 10 Make as unlucky applications, And steer against the stream their passions. Some forge their mistresses of stars, And when the ladies prove averse, And a more untoward to be won 15 Than by CALIGULA the Moon, Cry out upon the stars, for doing Ill offices to cross their wooing; When only by themselves they're hindred, For trusting those they made her kindred; 20 And still, the harsher and hide-bounder The damsels prove, become the fonder. For what mad lover ever dy'd To gain a soft and gentle bride? Or for a lady tender-hearted, 25 In purling streams or hemp departed? Leap'd headlong int' Elysium, Through th' windows of a dazzling room? But for some cross, ill-natur'd dame, The am'rous fly burnt in his flame. 30 This to the Knight could be no news, With all mankind so much in use; Who therefore took the wiser course, To make the most of his amours, Resolv'd to try all sorts of ways, 35 As follows in due time and place No sooner was the bloody fight, Between the Wizard, and the Knight, With all th' appurtenances, over, But he relaps'd again t' a lover; 40 As he was always wont to do, When h' had discomfited a foe And us'd the only antique b philters, Deriv'd from old heroic tilters. But now triumphant, and victorious, 45 He held th' atchievement was too glorious For such a conqueror to meddle With petty constable or beadle, Or fly for refuge to the Hostess Of th' Inns of Court and Chancery, Justice, Who might, perhaps reduce his cause 50 To th' cordeal trial of the laws, Where none escape, but such as branded With red-hot irons have past bare-handed; And, if they cannot read one verse I' th' Psalms, must sing it, and that's worse. 55 He therefore judging it below him, To tempt a shame the Devil might owe him, Resolv'd to leave the Squire for bail And mainprize for him to the gaol, To answer, with his vessel, all, 60 That might disastrously befall; And thought it now the fittest juncture To give the Lady a rencounter, T' acquaint her 'with his expedition, 65 And conquest o'er the fierce Magician; Describe the manner of the fray, And show the spoils he brought away, His bloody scourging aggravate, The number of his blows, and weight, 70 All which might probably succeed, And gain belief h' had done the deed, Which he resolv'd t' enforce, and spare No pawning of his soul to swear, But, rather than produce his back, 75 To set his conscience on the rack, And in pursuance of his urging Of articles perform'd and scourging, And all things else, his part, Demand deliv'ry of her heart, 80 Her goods, and chattels, and good graces, And person up to his embraces. Thought he, the ancient errant knights Won all their ladies hearts in fights; And cut whole giants into fritters, 85 To put them into amorous twitters Whose stubborn bowels scorn'd to yield Until their gallants were half kill'd But when their bones were drub'd so sore They durst not woo one combat more, 90 The ladies hearts began to melt, Subdu'd by blows their lovers felt. So d Spanish heroes, with their lances, At once wound bulls and ladies' fancies; And he acquires the noblest spouse 95 That widows greatest herds of cows: Then what may I expect to do, Wh' have quell'd so vast a buffalo? Mean while, the Squire was on his way The Knight's late orders to obey; 100 Who sent him for a strong detachment Of beadles, constables, and watchmen, T' attack the cunning-man fur plunder, Committed falsely on his lumber; When he, who had so lately sack'd 105 The enemy, had done the fact; Had rifled all his pokes and fobs Of gimcracks, whims, and jiggumbobs, When he, by hook or crook, had gather'd, And for his own inventions father'd 110 And when they should, at gaol delivery, Unriddle one another's thievery, Both might have evidence enough, To render neither halter proof. He thought it desperate to tarry, 115 And venture to be accessary But rather wisely slip his fetters, And leave them for the Knight, his betters. He call'd to mind th' unjust, foul play He wou'd have offer'd him that day, 120 To make him curry his own hide, Which no beast ever did beside, Without all possible evasion, But of the riding dispensation; And therefore much about the hour 125 The Knight (for reasons told before) Resolv'd to leave them to the fury Of Justice, and an unpack'd Jury, The Squire concurr'd t' abandon him, And serve him in the self-same trim; 130 T' acquaint the Lady what h' had done, And what he meant to carry on; What project 'twas he went about, When SIDROPHEL and he fell out; His firm and stedfast Resolution, 135 To swear her to an execution; To pawn his e inward ears to marry her, And bribe the Devil himself to carry her; In which both dealt, as if they meant Their Party-Saints to represent, 140 Who never fail'd upon their sharing In any prosperous arms-bearing To lay themselves out to supplant Each other Cousin-German Saint. But, ere the Knight could do his part, 145 The Squire had got so much the start, H' had to the Lady done his errand, And told her all his tricks afore-hand. Just as he finish'd his report, The Knight alighted in the court; 150 And having ty'd his beast t' a pale, And taking time for both to stale, He put his band and beard in order, The sprucer to accost and board her; And now began t' approach the door, 155 When she, wh' had spy'd him out before Convey'd th' informer out of sight, And went to entertain the Knight With whom encount'ring, after longees Of humble and submissive congees, 160 And all due ceremonies paid, He strok'd his beard, and thus he said: Madam, I do, as is my duty, Honour the shadow of your shoe-tye; And now am come to bring your ear 165 A present you'll be glad to hear: At least I hope so: the thing's done, Or may I never see the sun; For which I humbly now demand Performance at your gentle hand 170 And that you'd please to do your part, As I have done mine, to my smart. With that he shrugg'd his sturdy back As if he felt his shoulders ake. But she, who well enough knew what 175 (Before he spoke) he would be at, Pretended not to apprehend The mystery of what he mean'd;. And therefore wish'd him to expound His dark expressions, less profound. 180 Madam, quoth he, I come to prove How much I've suffer'd for your love, Which (like your votary) to win, I have not spar'd my tatter'd skin And for those meritorious lashes, 185 To claim your favour and good graces. Quoth she, I do remember once I freed you from th' inchanted sconce; And that you promis'd, for that favour, To bind your back to good behaviour, 190 And, for my sake and service, vow'd To lay upon't a heavy load, And what 'twould bear t' a scruple prove, As other Knights do oft make love Which, whether you have done or no, 195 Concerns yourself, not me, to know. But if you have, I shall confess, Y' are honester than I could guess. Quoth he, if you suspect my troth, I cannot prove it but by oath; 200 And if you make a question on't, I'll pawn my soul that I have done't; And he that makes his soul his surety, I think, does give the best security. Quoth she, Some say, the soul's secure 205 Against distress and forfeiture Is free from action, and exempt From execution and contempt; And to be summon'd to appear In th' other world's illegal here; 210 And therefore few make any account Int' what incumbrances they run't For most men carry things so even Between this World, and Hell, and Heaven, Without the least offence to either, 215 They freely deal in all together; And equally abhor to quit This world for both or both for it; And when they pawn and damn their souls, They are but pris'ners on paroles. 220 For that (quoth he) 'tis rational, Th' may be accountable in all: For when there is that intercourse Between divine and human pow'rs, That all that we determine here 225 Commands obedience every where, When penalties may be commuted For fines or ears, and executed It follows, nothing binds so fast As souls in pawn and mortgage past 230 For oaths are th' only tests and seals Of right and wrong, and true and false, And there's no other way to try The doubts of law and justice by. (Quoth she) What is it you would swear 235 There's no believing till I hear For, till they're understood all tales (Like nonsense) are not true nor false. (Quoth he) When I resolv'd t' obey What you commanded th' other day, 240 And to perform my exercise, (As schools are wont) for your fair eyes, T' avoid all scruples in the case, I went to do't upon the place. But as the Castle is inchanted 245 By SIDROPHEL the Witch and haunted By evil spirits, as you know, Who took my Squire and me for two, Before I'd hardly time to lay My weapons by, and disarray 250 I heard a formidable noise, Loud as the f Stentrophonick voice, That roar'd far off, Dispatch and strip, I'm ready with th' infernal whip, That shall divest thy ribs from skin, 255 To expiate thy ling'ring sin. Th' hast broken perfidiously thy oath, And not perform'd thy plighted troth; But spar'd thy renegado back, Where th' hadst so great a prize at stake; 260 Which now the fates have order'd me For penance and revenge to flea, Unless thou presently make haste: Time is, time was: And there it ceas'd. With which, though startled, I confess, 265 Yet th' horror of the thing was less Than th' other dismal apprehension Of interruption or prevention; And therefore, snatching up the rod, I laid upon my back a load; 270 Resolv'd to spare no flesh and blood, To make my word and honour good; Till tir'd, and making truce at length, For new recruits of breath and strength, I felt the blows still ply'd as fast 275 As th' had been by g lovers plac'd, In raptures of platonick lashing, And chaste contemplative bardashing; When facing hastily about, To stand upon my guard and scout, 280 I found th' infernal Cunning-man, And th' under-witch, his CALIBAN, With scourges (like the Furies) arm'd, That on my outward quarters storm'd. In haste I snatch'd my weapon up, 285 And gave their hellish rage a stop; Call'd thrice upon your name, and fell Courageously on SIDROPHEL; Who, now transform'd himself a bear, Began to roar aloud, and tear; 290 When I as furiously press'd on, My weapon down his throat to run; Laid hold on him; but he broke loose, And turn'd himself into a goose; Div'd under water, in a pond, 295 To hide himself from being found. In vain I sought him; but, as soon As I perceiv'd him fled and gone, Prepar'd with equal haste and rage, His Under-sorcerer t' engage. 300 But bravely scorning to defile My sword with feeble blood and vile, I judg'd it better from a quick- Set hedge to cut a knotted stick, With which I furiously laid on 305 Till, in a harsh and doleful tone, It roar'd, O hold for pity, Sir I am too great a sufferer, Abus'd, as you have been, b' a witch, But conjur'd into a worse caprich; 310 Who sends me out on many a jaunt, Old houses in the night to haunt, For opportunities t' improve Designs of thievery or love; With drugs convey'd in drink or meat, 315 All teats of witches counterfeit; Kill pigs and geese with powder'd glass, And make it for enchantment pass; With cow-itch meazle like a leper, And choak with fumes of guiney pepper; 320 Make leachers and their punks with dewtry, Commit fantastical advowtry; Bewitch h Hermetick-men to run Stark staring mad with manicon; Believe mechanick Virtuosi 325 Can raise 'em mountains in i POTOSI; And, sillier than the antick fools, Take treasure for a heap of coals: Seek out for plants with signatures, To quack of universal cures: 330 With figures ground on panes of glass Make people on their heads to pass; And mighty heaps of coin increase, Reflected from a single piece, To draw in fools, whose nat'ral itches 335 Incline perpetually to witches; And keep me in continual fears, And danger of my neck and ears; When less delinquents have been scourg'd, And hemp on wooden anvil forg'd, 340 Which others for cravats have worn About their necks, and took a turn. I pity'd the sad punishment The wretched caitiff underwent, And left my drubbing of his bones, 345 Too great an honour for pultrones; For Knights are bound to feel no blows From paultry and unequal foes, Who, when they slash, and cut to pieces, Do all with civilest addresses: 350 Their horses never give a blow, But when they make a leg, and bow. I therefore spar'd his flesh, and prest him About the witch with many a. question. Quoth he, For many years he drove 355 A kind of broking-trade in love; Employ'd in all th' intrigues, and trust Of feeble, speculative lust: Procurer to th' extravagancy, And crazy ribaldry of fancy, 360 By those the Devil had forsook, As things below him to provoke. But b'ing a virtuoso, able To smatter, quack, and cant, and dabble, He held his talent most adroit 365 For any mystical exploit; As others of his tribe had done, And rais'd their prices three to one: For one predicting pimp has th' odds Of chauldrons of plain downright bawds. 370 But as an elf (the Devil's valet) Is not so slight a thing to get; For those that do his bus'ness best, In hell are us'd the ruggedest; Before so meriting a person 375 Cou'd get a grant, but in reversion, He serv'd two prenticeships, and longer, I' th' myst'ry of a lady-monger. For (as some write) a witch's ghost, As soon as from the body loos'd, 380 Becomes a puney-imp itself And is another witch's elf. He, after searching far and near, At length found one in LANCASHIRE With whom he bargain'd before-hand, 385 And, after hanging, entertained; Since which h' has play'd a thousand feats, And practis'd all mechanick cheats, Transform'd himself to th' ugly shapes Of wolves and bears, baboons and apes, 390 Which he has vary'd more than witches, Or Pharaoh's wizards cou'd their switches; And all with whom h' has had to do, Turn'd to as monstrous figures too. Witness myself, whom h' has abus'd, 395 And to this beastly shape reduc'd, By feeding me on beans and pease, He crams in nasty crevices, And turns to comfits by his arts, To make me relish for disserts, 400 And one by one, with shame and fear, Lick up the candy'd provender. Beside -- But as h' was running on, To tell what other feats h' had done, The Lady stopt his full career, 405 And told him now 'twas time to hear If half those things (said she) be true -- They're all, (quoth he,) I swear by you. Why then (said she,) That SIDROPHEL Has damn'd himself to th' pit of Hell; 410 Who, mounted on a broom, the nag And hackney of a Lapland hag, In quest of you came hither post, Within an hour (I'm sure) at most; Who told me all you swear and say, 415 Quite contrary another way; Vow'd that you came to him to know If you should carry me or no; And would have hir'd him, and his imps, To be your match-makers and pimps, 420 T' engage the Devil on. your side, And steal (like PROSERPINE) your bride. But he, disdaining to embrace. So filthy a design and base, You fell to vapouring and huffing 425 And drew upon him like a ruffin; Surpriz'd him meanly, unprepar'd, Before h' had time to mount his guard; And left him dead upon the ground, With many a bruise and desperate wound: 430 Swore you had broke and robb'd his house, And stole his talismanique louse, And all his new-found old inventions;. With flat felonious intentions; Which he could bring out where he had, 435 And what he bought them for, and paid. His flea, his morpion, and punese, H' had gotten for his proper ease, And all perfect minutes made, By th' ablest artist of the trade; 440 Which (he could prove it) since he lost, He has been eaten up almost; And all together might amount To many hundreds on account; For which h' had got sufficient warrant 445 To seize the malefactors errant, Without capacity of bail, But of a cart's or horse's tail; And did not doubt to bring the wretches To serve for pendulums to watches; 450 Which, modern virtuosos say, Incline to hanging every way. Beside, he swore, and swore 'twas true, That, e're he went in quest of you, He set a figure to discover 455 If you were fled to RYE or DOVER; And found it clear, that, to betray Yourselves and me, you fled this way; And that he was upon pursuit, To take you somewhere hereabout. 460 He vow' d he had intelligence Of all that past before and since; And found that, e'er you came to him,. Y' had been engaging life and limb About a case of tender conscience, 465 Where both abounded in your own sense: Till RALPHO, by his light and grace, Had clear'd all scruples in the case; And prov'd that you might swear and own Whatever's by the wicked done, 470 For which, most basely to requite The service of his gifts and light, You strove to oblige him, by main force, To scourge his ribs instead of yours; But that he stood upon his guard, 475 And all your vapouring out-dar'd; For which, between you both, the feat Has never been perform'd as yet. While thus the Lady talk'd, the Knight Turn'd th' outside of his eyes to white; 480 (As men of inward light are wont To turn their opticks in upon 't) He wonder'd how she came to know What he had done, and meant to do; Held up his affidavit-hand, 485 As if h' had been to be arraign'd; Cast t'wards the door a look, In dread of SIDROPHEL, and spoke: Madam, if but one word be true Of all the Wizard has told you, 490 Or but one single circumstance In all th' apocryphal romance, May dreadful earthquakes swallow down This vessel, that is all your own; Or may the heavens fall, and cover 495 These reliques of your constant lover. You have provided well, quoth she, (I thank you) for yourself and me, And shown your presbyterian wits Jump punctual with the Jesuits; 500 A most compendious way, and civil, At once to cheat the world, the Devil, And Heaven and Hell, yourselves, and those On whom you vainly think t' impose. Why then (quoth he) may Hell surprize -- 505 That trick (said she) will not pass twice: I've learn'd how far I'm to believe Your pinning oaths upon your sleeve. But there's a better way of clearing What you would prove than downright swearing: 510 For if you have perform'd the feat, The blows are visible as yet, Enough to serve for satisfaction Of nicest scruples in the action: And if you can produce those knobs, 515 Although they're but the witch's drubs, I'll pass them all upon account, As if your natural self had done't Provided that they pass th' opinion Of able juries of old women 520 Who, us'd to judge all matter of facts For bellies, may do so for backs, Madam, (quoth he,) your love's a million; To do is less than to be willing, As I am, were it in my power, 525 T' obey, what you command, and more: But for performing what you bid, I thank you as much as if I did. You know I ought to have a care To keep my wounds from taking air: 530 For wounds in those that are all heart, Are dangerous in any part. I find (quoth she) my goods and chattels Are like to prove but mere drawn battels; For still the longer we contend, 535 We are but farther off the end. But granting now we should agree, What is it you expect from me? Your plighted faith (quoth he) and word You past in heaven on record, 540 Where all contracts, to have and t' hold, Are everlastingly enroll'd: And if 'tis counted treason here To raze records, 'tis much more there. Quoth she, There are no bargains driv'n, 545 Or marriages clapp'd up, in Heav'n, And that's the reason, as some guess, There is no heav'n in marriages; Two things that naturally press Too narrowly to be at ease. 550 Their bus'ness there is only love, Which marriage is not like t' improve: Love, that's too generous to abide To be against its nature ty'd; Or where 'tis of itself inclin'd, 555 It breaks loose when it is confin'd; And like the soul, it's harbourer. Debarr'd the freedom of the air, Disdains against its will to stay, But struggles out, and flies away; 560 And therefore never can comply To endure the matrimonial tie, That binds the female and the male, Where th' one is but the other's bail; Like Roman gaolers, when they slept, 565 Chain'd to the prisoners they kept Of which the true and faithfull'st lover Gives best security to suffer. Marriage is but a beast, some say, That carries double in foul way; 570 And therefore 'tis not to b' admir'd, It should so suddenly be tir'd; A bargain at a venture made, Between two partners in a trade; (For what's inferr'd by t' have and t' hold, 575 But something past away, and sold?) That as it makes but one of two, Reduces all things else as low; And, at the best, is but a mart Between the one and th' other part, 580 That on the marriage-day is paid, Or hour of death, the bet is laid; And all the rest of better or worse, Both are but losers out of purse. For when upon their ungot heirs 585 Th' entail themselves, and all that's theirs, What blinder bargain e'er was driv'n, Or wager laid at six and seven? To pass themselves away, and turn Their childrens' tenants e're they're born? 590 Beg one another idiot To guardians, e'er they are begot; Or ever shall, perhaps, by th' one, Who's bound to vouch 'em for his own, Though got b' implicit generation, 595 And gen'ral club of all the nation; For which she's fortify'd no less Than all the island, with four seas; Exacts the tribute of her dower, in ready insolence and power; 600 And makes him pass away to have And hold, to her, himself, her slave, k More wretched than an ancient villain, Condemn'd to drudgery and tilling; While all he does upon the by, 605 She is not bound to justify, Nor at her proper cost and charge Maintain the feats he does at large. Such hideous sots were those obedient Old vassals to their ladies regent; 610 To give the cheats the eldest hand In foul play by the laws o' th' land; For which so many a legal cuckold Has been run down in courts and truckeld: A law that most unjustly yokes 615 All Johns of Stiles to Joans of Nokes, Without distinction of degree, Condition, age, or quality: Admits no power of revocation, Nor valuable consideration, 620 Nor writ of error, nor reverse Of Judgment past, for better or worse: Will not allow the priviledges That beggars challenge under hedges, Who, when they're griev'd, can make dead horses 625 Their spiritual judges of divorces; While nothing else but Rem in Re Can set the proudest wretches free; A slavery beyond enduring, But that 'tis of their own procuring. 630 As spiders never seek the fly, But leave him, of himself, t' apply So men are by themselves employ'd, To quit the freedom they enjoy'd, And run their necks into a noose, 635 They'd break 'em after, to break loose; As some whom Death would not depart, Have done the feat themselves by art; Like l Indian widows, gone to bed In flaming curtains to the dead; 640 And men as often dangled for't, And yet will never leave the sport. Nor do the ladies want excuse For all the stratagems they use To gain the advantage of the set, 645 And lurch the amorous rook and cheat For as the m Pythagorean soul Runs through all beasts, and fish and fowl, And has a smack of ev'ry one, So love does, and has ever done; 650 And therefore, though 'tis ne'er so fond, Takes strangely to the vagabond. 'Tis but an ague that's reverst, Whose hot fit takes the patient first, That after burns with cold as much 655 As ir'n in GREENLAND does the touch; Melts in the furnace of desire Like glass, that's but the ice of fire; And when his heat of fancy's over, Becomes as hard and frail a lover. 660 For when he's with love-powder laden, And prim'd and cock'd by Miss or Madam, The smallest sparkle of an eye Gives fire to his artillery; And off the loud oaths go; but while 665 They're in the very act, recoil. Hence 'tis so few dare take their chance Without a sep'rate maintenance; And widows, who have try'd one lover, Trust none again, 'till th' have made over; 670 Or if they do, before they marry, The foxes weigh the geese they carry; And e're they venture o'er a stream, Know how to size themselves and them; Whence wittiest ladies always choose 675 To undertake the heaviest goose For now the world is grown so wary, That few of either sex dare marry, But rather trust on tick t' amours, The cross and pile for better or worse; 680 A mode that is held honourable, As well as French, and fashionable: For when it falls out for the best, Where both are incommoded least, In soul and body two unite, 685 To make up one hermaphrodite, Still amorous, and fond, and billing, Like PHILIP and MARY on a shilling, Th' have more punctilios and capriches Between the petticoat and breeches, 690 More petulant extravagances, Than poets make 'em in romances. Though when their heroes 'spouse the dames, We hear no more charms and flames: For then their late attracts decline, 695 And turn as eager as prick'd wine; And all their catterwauling tricks, In earnest to as jealous piques; Which the ancients wisely signify'd, By th' yellow mantos of the bride: 700 For jealousy is but a kind Of clap and grincam of the mind, The natural effects of love, As other flames and aches prove; But all the mischief is, the doubt 705 On whose account they first broke out. For though n Chineses go to bed, And lie in, in their ladies stead, And for the pains they took before, Are nurs'd and pamper'd to do more 710 Our green men do it worse, when th' hap To fail in labour of a clap Both lay the child to one another: But who's the father, who the mother, 'Tis hard to say in multitudes, 715 Or who imported the French goods. But health and sickness b'ing all one, Which both engag'd before to own, And are not with their bodies bound To worship, only when they're sound, 720 Both give and take their equal shares Of all they suffer by false wares: A fate no lover can divert With all his caution, wit, and art. For 'tis in vain to think to guess 725 At women by appearances, That paint and patch their imperfections Of intellectual complexions, And daub their tempers o'er with washes As artificial as their faces; 730 Wear under vizard-masks their talents And mother-wits before their gallants, Until they're hamper'd in the noose, Too fast to dream of breaking loose; When all the flaws they strove to hide 735 Are made unready with the bride, That with her wedding-clothes undresses Her complaisance and gentilesses, Tries all her arts to take upon her The government from th' easy owner; 740 Until the wretch is glad to wave His lawful right, and turn her slave; Find all his having, and his holding, Reduc'd t' eternal noise and scolding; The conjugal petard, that tears 745 Down all portcullises of ears, And make the volley of one tongue For all their leathern shields too strong When only arm'd with noise and nails, The female silk-worms ride the males, 750 o Transform 'em into rams and goats, Like Sirens, with their charming notes; Sweet as a screech-owl's serenade, Or those enchanting murmurs made By th' husband p mandrake and the wife, 755 Both bury'd (like themselves) alive. Quoth he, These reasons are but strains Of wanton, over-heated brains Which ralliers, in their wit, or drink, Do rather wheedle with than think 760 Man was not man in paradise, Until he was created twice, And had his better half, his bride, Carv'd from the original, his side, T' amend his natural defects, 765 And perfect his recruited sex; Inlarge his breed at once, and lessen The pains and labour of increasing, By changing them for other cares, As by his dry'd-up paps appears. 770 His body, that stupendous frame, Of all the world the anagram Is of two equal parts compact, In shape and symmetry exact, Of which the left and female side 775 Is to the manly right a bride; Both join'd together with such art, That nothing else but death can part. Those heav'nly attracts of yours, your eyes, And face, that all the world surprize, 780 That dazzle all that look upon ye, And scorch all other ladies tawny, Those ravishing and charming graces Are all made up of two half faces, That in a mathematick line, 785 Like those in other heavens, join, Of which if either grew alone, T' would fright as much to look upon: And so would that sweet bud your lip, Without the other's fellowship. 790 Our noblest senses act by pairs; Two eyes to see; to hear, two ears; Th' intelligencers of the mind, To wait upon the soul design'd, But those that serve the body alone, 795 Are single, and confin'd to one. The q world is but two parts, that meet And close at th' equinoctial fit; And so are all the works of nature, Stamp'd with her signature on matter, 800 Which all her creatures, to a leaf, Or smallest blade of grass receive; All which sufficiently declare, How entirely marriage is her care, The only method that she uses 805 In all the wonders she produces: And those that take their rules from her, Can never be deceiv'd, nor err. For what secures the civil life, But pawns of children, and a wife? 810 That lie like hostages at stake, To pay for all men undertake; To whom it is as necessary As to be born and breathe, to marry; So universal all mankind, 815 In nothing else, is of one mind. For in what stupid age, or nation, Was marriage ever out of fashion? Unless among the r Amazons, Or cloister'd friars, and vestal nuns; 820 Or Stoicks, who to bar the freaks And loose excesses of the sex, Prepost'rously wou'd have all women Turn'd up to all the world in common. Though men would find such mortal feuds, 825 In sharing of their publick goods, 'Twould put them to more charge of lives, Than they're supply'd with now by wives; Until they graze, and wear their clothes, As beasts do, of their native growths: 830 For simple wearing of their horns Will not suffice to serve their turns. For what can we pretend t' inherit, Unless the marriage-deed will bear it? Could claim no right, to lands or rents, 835 But for our parents' settlements; Had been but younger sons o' th' earth, Debarr'd it all, but for our birth. What honours or estates of peers, Cou'd be preserv'd but by their heirs 840 And what security maintains Their right and title, but the banes? What crowns could be hereditary, If greatest monarchs did not marry. And with their consorts consummate 845 Their weightiest interests of state? For all the amours of princes are But guarantees of peace or war, Or what but marriage has a charm The rage of empires to disarm, 850 Make blood and desolation cease, And fire and sword unite in peace, When all their fierce contest for forage Conclude in articles of marriage? Nor does the genial bed provide 855 Less for the int'rests of the bride; Who else had not the least pretence T' as much as due benevolence; Could no more title take upon her To virtue, quality, and honour. 860 Than ladies-errant, unconfin'd, And feme-coverts t' all mankind All women would be of one piece, The virtuous matron and the miss; The nymphs of chaste s Diana's train, 865 The same with those in t LEWKNER's Lane; But for the difference marriage makes 'Twixt wives and ladies of the lakes; Besides the joys of place and birth, The sex's paradise on earth; 870 A privilege so sacred held, That none will to their mothers yield; But rather than not go before, Abandon Heaven at the door. And if th' indulgent law allows 875 A greater freedom to the spouse, The u reason is, because the wife Runs greater hazards of her life; Is trusted with the form and matter Of all mankind by careful nature; 880 Where man brings nothing but the stuff She frames the wond'rous fabric of; Who therefore, in a streight, may freely Demand the clergy of her belly, And make it save her the same way 885 It seldom misses to betray; Unless both parties wisely enter Into the liturgy indenture, And though some fits of small contest Sometimes fall out among the best, 890 That is no more than ev'ry lover Does from his hackney-lady suffer; That makes no breach of faith and love, But rather (sometimes) serves t' improve. For as in running, ev'ry pace 895 Is but between two legs a race, In which both do their uttermost To get before, and win the post, Yet when they're at their race's ends, They're still as kind and constant friends, 900 And, to relieve their weariness, By turns give one another ease; So all those false alarms of strife Between the husband and the wife, And little quarrels, often prove 905 To be but new recruits of love; When those wh' are always kind or coy, In time must either tire or cloy. Nor are their loudest clamours more, Than as they're relish'd, sweet or sour; 910 Like musick, that proves bad or good; According as 'tis understood. In all amours, a lover burns With frowns as well as smiles by turns; And hearts have been as aft with sullen 915 As charming looks surpriz'd and stolen. Then why should more bewitching clamour Some lovers not as much enamour? For discords make the sweetest airs And curses are a kind of pray'rs; 920 Too slight alloys for all those grand Felicities by marriage gain'd. For nothing else has pow'r to settle Th' interests of love perpetual; An act and deed, that that makes one heart 925 Becomes another's counter-part, And passes fines on faith and love, Inroll'd and register'd above, To seal the slippery knots of vows, Which nothing else but death can loose. 930 And what security's too strong, To guard that gentle heart from wrong, That to its friend is glad to pass Itself away, and all it has; And, like an anchorite, gives over 935 This world for th' heaven of lover? I grant (quoth she) there are some few Who take that course, and find it true But millions whom the same does sentence To heav'n b' another way -- repentance. 940 Love's arrows are but shot at rovers; Though all they hit, they turn to lovers; And all the weighty consequents Depend upon more blind events, Than gamesters, when they play a set 945 With greatest cunning at piquet, Put out with caution, but take in They know not what, unsight, unseen, For what do lovers, when they're fast In one another's arms embrac't, 950 But strive to plunder, and convey Each other, like a prize, away? To change the property of selves, As sucking children are by elves? And if they use their persons so, 955 What will they to their fortunes do? Their fortunes! the perpetual aims Of all their extasies and flames. For when the money's on the book, And, All my worldly goods -- but spoke, 960 (The formal livery and seisin That puts a lover in possession,) To that alone the bridegroom's wedded; The bride a flam, that's superseded. To that their faith is still made good, 965 And all the oaths to us they vow'd: For when we once resign our pow'rs, W' have nothing left we can call ours: Our money's now become the Miss Of all your lives and services; 970 And we forsaken, and postpon'd; But bawds to what before we own'd; Which, as it made y' at first gallant us, So now hires others to supplant us, Until 'tis all turn'd out of doors, 975 (As we had been) for new amours; For what did ever heiress yet By being born to lordships get? When the more lady sh' is of manours, She's but expos'd to more trepanners, 980 Pays for their projects and designs, And for her own destruction fines; And does but tempt them with her riches, To use her as the Dev'l does witches; Who takes it for a special grace 985 To be their cully for a space, That when the time's expir'd, the drazels For ever may become his vassals: So she, bewitch'd by rooks and spirits, Betrays herself, and all sh' inherits; 990 Is bought and sold, like stolen goods, By pimps, and match-makers, and bawds, Until they force her to convey, And steal the thief himself away. These are the everlasting fruits 995 Of all your passionate love-suits, Th' effects of all your amorous fancies To portions and inheritances; Your love-sick rapture for fruition Of dowry, jointure, and tuition; 1000 To which you make address and courtship; Ad with your bodies strive to worship, That th' infants' fortunes may partake Of love too, for the mother's sake. For these you play at purposes, 1005 And love your love's with A's and B's: For these at Beste and L'Ombre woo, And play for love and money too; Strive who shall be the ablest man At right gallanting of a fan; 1010 And who the most genteelly bred At sucking of a vizard-head; How best t' accost us in all quarters; T' our question -- and -- command new Garters And solidly discourse upon 1015 All sorts of dresses, Pro and Con. For there's no mystery nor trade, But in the art of love is made: And when you have more debts to pay Than Michaelmas and Lady-Day, 1020 And no way possible to do't, But love and oaths, and restless suit, To us y' apply to pay the scores Of all your cully'd, past amours; Act o'er your flames and darts again, 1025 And charge us with your wounds and pain; Which others influences long since Have charm'd your noses with and shins; For which the surgeon is unpaid, And like to be, without our aid. 1030 Lord! what an am'rous thing is want! How debts and mortgages inchant! What graces must that lady have That can from executions save! What charms that can reverse extent, 1035 And null decree and exigent! What magical attracts and graces, That can redeem from Scire facias! From bonds and statutes can discharge, And from contempts of courts enlarge! 1040 These are the highest excellencies Of all your true or false pretences: And you would damn yourselves, and swear As much t' an hostess dowager, Grown fat and pursy by retail 1045 Of pots of beer and bottled ale; And find her fitter for your turn; For fat is wondrous apt to burn; Who at your flames would soon take fire, Relent, and melt to your desire, 1050 And like a candle in the socket, Dissolve her graces int' your pocket. By this time 'twas grown dark and late, When they heard a knocking at the gate, Laid on in haste with such a powder, 1055 The blows grew louder still and louder; Which HUDIBRAS, as if th' had been Bestow'd as freely on his skin, Expounding, by his inward light, Or rather more prophetick fright, 1060 To be the Wizard, come to search, And take him napping in the lurch Turn'd pale as ashes or a clout; But why or wherefore is a doubt For men will tremble, and turn paler, 1065 With too much or too little valour. His heart laid on, as if it try'd To force a passage through his side, Impatient (as he vow'd) to wait 'em, But in a fury to fly at 'em; 1070 And therefore beat, and laid about, To find a cranny to creep out. But she, who saw in what a taking The Knight was by his furious quaking, Undaunted cry'd, Courage, Sir Knight; 1075 Know, I'm resolv'd to break no rite Of hospitality t' a stranger; But, to secure you out of danger, Will here myself stand sentinel, To guard this pass 'gainst SIDROPHEL. 1080 Women, you know, do seldom fail To make the stoutest men turn tail; And bravely scorn to turn their backs Upon the desp'ratest attacks. At this the Knight grew resolute 1085 As w IRONSIDE and HARDIKNUTE His fortitude began to rally, And out he cry'd aloud to sally. But she besought him to convey His courage rather out o' th' way, 1090 And lodge in ambush on the floor, Or fortify'd behind a door; That if the enemy shou'd enter, He might relieve her in th' adventure. Mean while they knock'd against the door 1095 As fierce as at the gate before, Which made the Renegado Knight Relapse again t' his former fright. He thought it desperate to stay Till th' enemy had forc'd his way, 1100 But rather post himself, to serve The lady, for a fresh reserve His duty was not to dispute, But what sh' had order'd execute; Which he resolv'd in haste t' obey, 1105 And therefore stoutly march'd away; And all h' encounter'd fell upon, Though in the dark, and all alone; Till fear, that braver feats performs Than ever courage dar'd in arms, 1110 Had drawn him up before a pass To stand upon his guard, and face: This he courageously invaded, And having enter'd, barricado'd, Insconc'd himself as formidable 1115 As could be underneath a table, Where he lay down in ambush close, T' expect th' arrival of his foes. Few minutes he had lain perdue, To guard his desp'rate avenue, 1120 Before he heard a dreadful shout, As loud as putting to the rout, With which impatiently alarm'd, He fancy'd th' enemy had storm'd, And, after ent'ring, SIDROPHEL 1125 Was fall'n upon the guards pell-mell He therefore sent out all his senses, To bring him in intelligences, Which vulgars, out of ignorance, Mistake for falling in a trance; 1130 But those that trade in geomancy, Affirm to be the strength of fancy; In which the x Lapland Magi deal, And things incredible reveal. Mean while the foe beat up his quarters, 1135 And storm'd the out-works of his fortress: And as another, of the same Degree and party, in arms and fame, That in the same cause had engag'd, At war with equal conduct wag'd, 1140 By vent'ring only but to thrust His head a span beyond his post, B' a gen'ral of the cavaliers Was dragg'd thro' a window by th' ears; So he was serv'd in his redoubt, 1145 And by the other end pull'd out. Soon as they had him at their mercy, They put him to the cudgel fiercely, As if they'd scorn'd to trade or barter, By giving or by taking quarter: 1150 They stoutly on his quarters laid, Until his scouts came in t' his aid. For when a man is past his sense, There's no way to reduce him thence, But twinging him by th' ears or nose, 1155 Or laying on of heavy blows; And if that will not do the deed, To y burning with hot irons proceed. No sooner was he come t' himself, But on his neck a sturdy elf 1160 Clapp'd, in a trice, his cloven hoof, And thus attack'd him with reproof; Mortal, thou art betray'd to us B' our friend, thy Evil Genius, Who, for thy horrid perjuries, 1165 Thy breach of faith, and turning lies, The Brethren's privilege (against The wicked) on themselves, the Saints, Has here thy wretched carcase sent For just revenge and punishment; 1170 Which thou hast now no way to lessen, But by an open, free confession; For if we catch thee failing once, 'Twill fall the heavier on thy bones. What made thee venture to betray, 1175 And filch the lady's heart away? To Spirit her to matrimony? -- That which contracts all matches -- money. It was th' inchantment oft her riches That made m' apply t' your croney witches, 1180 That, in return, wou'd pay th' expence, The wear and tear of conscience; Which I cou'd have patch'd up, and turn'd, For the hundredth part of what I earn'd. Didst thou not love her then? Speak true. 1185 No more (quoth he) than I love you. -- How would'st th' have us'd her, and her money? -- First turn'd her up to alimony; And laid her dowry out in law, To null her jointure with a flaw, 1190 Which I before-hand had agreed T' have put, on purpose in the deed; And bar her widow's making over T' a friend in trust, or private lover. What made thee pick and chuse her out, 1195 T' employ their sorceries about? -- That which makes gamesters play with those Who have least wit, and most to lose. But didst thou scourge thy vessel thus, As thou hast damn'd thyself to us? 1200 I see you take me for an ass: 'Tis true, I thought the trick wou'd pass Upon a woman well enough, As 't has been often found by proof, Whose humours are not to be won, 1205 But when they are impos'd upon. For love approves of all they do That stand for candidates, and woo. Why didst thou forge those shameful lies Of bears and witches in disguise? 1210 That is no more than authors give The rabble credit to believe: A trick of following their leaders, To entertain their gentle readers; And we have now no other way 1215 Of passing all we do or say Which, when 'tis natural and true, Will be believ'd b' a very few, Beside the danger of offence, The fatal enemy of sense. 1220 Why did thou chuse that cursed sin, Hypocrisy, to set up in? Because it is in the thriving'st calling, The only Saints-bell that rings all in; In which all churches are concern'd, 1225 And is the easiest to be learn'd: For no degrees, unless th' employ't, Can ever gain much, or enjoy't: A gift that is not only able To domineer among the rabble, 1230 But by the laws impower'd to rout, And awe the greatest that stand out; Which few hold forth against, for fear Their hands should slip, and come too near; For no sin else among the Saints 1235 Is taught so tenderly against. What made thee break thy plighted vows? -- That which makes others break a house, And hang, and scorn ye all, before Endure the plague of being poor. 1240 Quoth he, I see you have more tricks Than all your doating politicks, That are grown old, and out of fashion, Compar'd with your New Reformation; That we must come to school to you, 1245 To learn your more refin'd, and new. Quoth he, If you will give me leave To tell you what I now perceive, You'll find yourself an arrant chouse, If y' were but at a Meeting-House. -- 1250 'Tis true, quoth he, we ne'er come there, Because, w' have let 'em out by th' year. Truly, quoth he, you can't imagine What wond'rous things they will engage in That as your fellow-fiends in Hell 1255 Were angels all before they fell, So are you like to be agen, Compar'd with th' angels of us men. Quoth he, I am resolv'd to be Thy scholar in this mystery; 1260 And therefore first desire to know Some principles on which you go. What makes a knave a child of God, And one of us? -- A livelihood. What renders beating out of brains, 1265 And murder, godliness? -- Great gains. What's tender conscience? -- 'Tis a botch, That will not bear the gentlest touch; But breaking out, dispatches more Than th' epidemical'st plague-sore. 1270 What makes y' encroach upon our trade, And damn all others? -- To be paid. What's orthodox, and true, believing Against a conscience? -- A good living. What makes rebelling against Kings 1275 A Good Old Cause? -- Administrings. What makes all doctrines plain and clear? -- About two hundred pounds a year. And that which was prov'd true before, Prove false again? -- Two hundred more. 1280 What makes the breaking of all oaths A holy duty? -- Food and cloaths. What laws and freedom, persecution? -- B'ing out of pow'r, and contribution. What makes a church a den of thieves? -- 1285 A dean and chapter, and white sleeves. Ad what would serve, if those were gone, To make it orthodox? -- Our own. What makes morality a crime, The most notorious of the time; 1290 Morality, which both the Saints, And wicked too, cry out against? -- Cause grace and virtue are within Prohibited degrees of kin And therefore no true Saint allows, 1295 They shall be suffer'd to espouse; For Saints can need no conscience, That with morality dispense; As virtue's impious, when 'tis rooted In nature only, and not imputed 1300 But why the wicked should do so, We neither know, or care to do. What's liberty of conscience, I' th' natural and genuine sense? 'Tis to restore, with more security, 1305 Rebellion to its ancient purity; And christian liberty reduce To th' elder practice of the Jews. For a large conscience is all one, And signifies the same with none. 1310 It is enough (quoth he) for once, And has repriev'd thy forfeit bones: NICK MACHIAVEL had ne'er a trick, (Though he gave his name to our Old Nick,) But was below the least of these, 1315 That pass i' th' world for holiness. This said, the furies and the light In th' instant vanish'd out of sight, And left him in the dark alone, With stinks of brimstone and his own. 1320 The z Queen of Night, whose large command Rules all the sea, and half the land, And over moist and crazy brains, In high spring-tides, at midnight reigns, Was now declining to the west, 1325 To go to bed, and take her rest; When HUDIBRAS, whose stubborn blows Deny'd his bones that soft repose, Lay still expecting worse and more, Stretch'd out at length upon the floor; 1330 And though he shut his eyes as fast As if h' had been to sleep his last, Saw all the shapes that fear or wizards Do make the Devil wear for vizards, And pricking up his ears, to hark 1335 If he cou'd hear too in the dark, Was first invaded with a groan And after in a feeble tone, These trembling words: Unhappy wretch! What hast thou gotten by this fetch; 1340 For all thy tricks, in this new trade, Thy holy brotherhood o' th' blade? By sauntring still on some adventure, And growing to thy horse a a Centaure? To stuff thy skin with swelling knobs 1345 Of cruel and hard-wooded drubs? For still th' hast had the worst on't yet, As well in conquest as defeat. Night is the sabbath of mankind, To rest the body and the mind, 1350 Which now thou art deny'd to keep, And cure thy labour'd corpse with sleep. The Knight, who heard the words, explain'd, As meant to him, this reprimand, Because the character did hit 1355 Point-blank upon his case so fit; Believ'd it was some drolling spright, That staid upon the guard that night, And one of those h' had seen, and felt The drubs he had so freely dealt; 1360 When, after a short pause and groan, The doleful Spirit thus went on: This 'tis t' engage with dogs and bears Pell-mell together by the ears, And, after painful bangs and knocks, 1365 To lie in limbo in the stocks, And from the pinnacle of glory Fall headlong into purgatory. (Thought he, this devil's full of malice, That in my late disasters rallies:) 1370 Condemn'd to whipping, but declin'd it, By being more heroic-minded: And at a riding handled worse, With treats more slovenly and coarse: Engag'd with fiends in stubborn wars, 1375 And hot disputes with conjurers; And when th' hadst bravely won the day, Wast fain to steal thyself away. (I see, thought he, this shameless elf Wou'd fain steal me too from myself, 1380 That impudently dares to own What I have suffer'd for and done,) And now but vent'ring to betray, Hast met with vengeance the same way. Thought he, how does the Devil know 1385 What 'twas that I design'd to do? His office of intelligence, His oracles, are ceas'd long since; And he knows nothing of the Saints, But what some treacherous spy acquaints. 1390 This is some pettifogging fiend, Some under door-keeper's friend's friend, That undertakes to understand, And juggles at the second-hand; And now would pass for Spirit Po, 1395 And all mens' dark concerns foreknow. I think I need not fear him for't; These rallying devils do no hurt. With that he rouz'd his drooping heart, And hastily cry'd out, What art? 1400 A wretch (quoth he) whom want of grace Has brought to this unhappy place. I do believe thee, quoth the Knight; Thus far I'm sure th' art in the right; And know what 'tis that troubles thee, 1405 Better than thou hast guess'd of me. Thou art some paultry, black-guard spright, Condemn'd to drudg'ry in the night Thou hast no work to do in th' house Nor half-penny to drop in shoes; 1410 Without the raising of which sum, You dare not be so troublesome, To pinch the slatterns black and blue, For leaving you their work to do. This is your bus'ness good Pug-Robin; 1415 And your diversion dull dry-bobbing, T' entice fanaticks in the dirt, And wash them clean in ditches for't; Of which conceit you are so proud, At ev'ry jest you laugh aloud, 1420 As now you wou'd have done by me, But that I barr'd your raillery. Sir (quoth the voice) y'are no such b Sophi As you would have the world judge of ye. If you design to weigh our talents 1425 I' the standard of your own false balance, Or think it possible to know Us ghosts as well as we do you; We, who have been the everlasting Companions of your drubs and basting, 1430 And never left you in contest, With male or female, man or beast, But prov'd as true t' ye, and entire, In all adventures, as your Squire. Quoth he, That may be said as true 1435 By the idlest pug of all your crew: For none cou'd have betray'd us worse Than those allies of ours and yours. But I have sent him for a token To your Low-Country HOGEN-MOGEN, 1440 To whose infernal shores I hope He'll swing like skippers in a rope. And, if y' have been more just to me (As I am apt to think) than he, I am afraid it is as true, 1445 What th' ill-affected say of you: Y' have spous'd the Covenant and Cause, By holding up your cloven paws. Sir, quoth the voice, 'tis true, I grant, We made and took the Covenant; 1450 But that no more concerns the Cause Than other perj'ries do the laws, Which when they're prov'd in open court, Wear wooden c peccadillo's for't: And that's the reason Cov'nanters 1455 Hold up their hands like rogues at bars. I see, quoth HUDIBRAS, from whence These scandals of the Saints commence, That are but natural effects Of Satan's malice, and his sects, 1460 Those Spider-Saints, that hang by threads, Spun out o' th' intrails of their heads. Sir, quoth the voice, that may as true And properly be said of you, Whose talents may compare with either, 1465 Or both the other put together. For all the Independents do, Is only what you forc'd 'em to; You, who are not content alone With tricks to put the Devil down, 1470 But must have armies rais'd to back The gospel-work you undertake; As if artillery, and edge-tools, Were the only engines to save souls; While he, poor devil, has no pow'r 1475 By force to run down and devour; Has ne'er a Classis; cannot sentence To stools or poundage of repentance; Is ty'd up only to design, T' entice, and tempt, and undermine, 1480 In which you all his arts out-do, And prove yourselves his betters too. Hence 'tis d possessions do less evil Than mere temptations of the Devil, Which, all the horrid'st actions done, 1485 Are charg'd in courts of law upon; Because unless they help the elf, He can do little of himself; And therefore where he's best possess'd Acts most against his interest; 1490 Surprizes none, but those wh' have priests To turn him out, and exorcists, Supply'd with spiritual provision, And magazines of ammunition With crosses, relicks, crucifixes, 1495 Beads, pictures, rosaries, and pixes; The tools of working our salvation By mere mechanick operation; With holy water, like a sluice, To overflow all avenues. 1500 But those wh' are utterly unarm'd T' oppose his entrance, if he storm'd, He never offers to surprize, Although his falsest enemies; But is content to be their drudge, 1505 And on their errands glad to trudge For where are all your forfeitures Entrusted in safe hands but ours? Who are but jailors of the holes, 1510 And dungeons where you clap up souls; Like under-keepers, turn the keys, T' your mittimus anathemas; And never boggle to restore The members you deliver o're Upon demand, with fairer justice 1515 Than all your covenanting Trustees; Unless to punish them the worse, You put them in the secular pow'rs, And pass their souls, as some demise The same estate in mortgage twice; 1520 When to a legal e Utlegation You turn your excommunication, And for a groat unpaid, that's due, f Distrain on soul and body too. Thought he, 'tis no mean part of civil 1525 State prudence to cajole the Devil And not to handle him too rough, When h' has us in his cloven hoof. T' is true, quoth he, that intercourse Has pass'd between your friends and ours; 1530 That as you trust us, in our way, To raise your members, and to lay, We send you others of our own, Denounc'd to hang themselves or drown; Or, frighted with our oratory, 1435 To leap down headlong many a story Have us'd all means to propagate Your mighty interests of state; Laid out our spiritual gifts to further Your great designs of rage and murther. 1540 For if the Saints are nam'd from blood, We only have made that title good; And if it were but in our power, We should not scruple to do more, And not be half a soul behind 1545 Of all dissenters of mankind. Right, quoth the voice, and as I scorn To be ungrateful, in return Of all those kind good offices, I'll free you out of this distress, 1550 And set you down in safety, where It is no time to tell you here. The cock crows, and the morn grows on, When 'tis decreed I must be gone; And if I leave you here till day, 1555 You'll find it hard to get away. With that the Spirit grop'd about, To find th' inchanted hero out, And try'd with haste to lift him up; But found his forlorn hope, his crup, 1560 Unserviceable with kicks and blows, Receiv'd from harden'd-hearted foes. He thought to drag him by the heels, Like Gresham carts, with legs for wheels; But fear, that soonest cures those sores 1565 In danger of relapse to worse, Came in t' assist him with it's aid And up his sinking vessel weigh'd. No sooner was he fit to trudge, But both made ready to dislodge. 1570 The Spirit hors'd him like a sack Upon the vehicle his back; And bore him headlong into th' hall, With some few rubs against the wall Where finding out the postern lock'd, 1575 And th' avenues as strongly block'd, H' attack'd the window, storm'd the glass, And in a moment gain'd the pass; Thro' which he dragg'd the worsted souldier's Fore-quarters out by the head and shoulders; 1580 And cautiously began to scout, To find their fellow-cattle out. Nor was it half a minute's quest, E're he retriev'd the champion's beast, Ty'd to a pale, instead of rack; 1585 But ne'er a saddle on his back, Nor pistols at the saddle-bow, Convey'd away the Lord knows how, He thought it was no time to stay, And let the night too steal away; 1590 But in a trice advanc'd the Knight Upon the bare ridge, bolt upright: And groping out for RALPHO's jade, He found the saddle too was stray'd, And in the place a lump of soap, 1595 On which he speedily leap'd up; And turning to the gate the rein, He kick'd and cudgell'd on amain. While HUDIBRAS, with equal haste, On both sides laid about as fast, 1600 And spurr'd as jockies use to break, Or padders to secure, a neck Where let us leave 'em for a time, And to their Churches turn our rhyme; To hold forth their declining state, 1605 Which now come near an even rate.

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