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66 This is both a lively and amusing picture, to which let me subjoin Holinshed's description of the Yeomen in Elizabeth's time, taken from Harrison.”

YEOMEN. “ This sort of people have a certaine preheminence, and more estimation than labourers and the common sort of artificers, and these commonlie live wealthilie, kéepe good houses, and travell to get riches. They are also for the most part farmers to gentlemen, or at the leastwise artificers, and with grazing, frequenting of markets, and keeping of servants (not idle servants, as the gentlemen doo, but such as get both their owhe and part of their masters living) do come to great welth, in somuch that manie of them are able and doo buie the lands of unthriftie gentlemen, and often setting their sonnes to the schooles, to the universities, and to the Ins of the court; or otherwise leaving them sufficient lands whereupon they may live without labour, doo make them by those meanes to become gentlemen : these were they that in times past made all France afraid. And albeit they be not called master, as gentlemen are, or sir as to knights apperteineth, but onelie John and Tho. mas, &c. : yet have they beene found to have doone verie good service : and the kings of England in foughten battels, were woont to remaine among them (who were their footmen) as the French kings did amongst their horssemen: the prince thereby shewing where his chiefe strength did consist.”

them that in times called más but onelieve doone veror

66 These notes, you see,” continued Egeria, “ are very curious illustrations of national history, and will prove highly useful to you, when, inspired by me, you undertake to write a historical novel; but the following is still better. It is also by Harrison,

who, speaking of the additional splendour of gentlemen's houses in Elizabeth's time, remarks"

THE GROWTH OF LUXURY. In times past the costlie furniture staied there, whereas now it is descended yet lower, even unto manie farmers, who, by vertue of their old and not of their new leases, have for the most part learned also to garnish their cupbords with plate, their ioined beds with tapistrie and silke hangings, and their tables with carpets and fine naperie, whereby the wealth of our countrie (God be praised therefore, and give us grace to imploie it well) dooth infinitlie appeare. Neither doo I speake this in reproch of anie man, God is my judge, but to shew that I do rejoise rather, to see how God hath blessed us with his good gifts; and whilest I behold how that in a time wherein all things are growen to most ex. cessive prices, and what commoditie so ever is to be had, is daily plucked from the commonaltie by such as looke in to everie trade, we doo yet find the means to obtein and atchive such furniture as here to fore hath beene unpossible. There are old men yet dwelling in the vil. lage where I remaine, which have noted three things to be marvellouslie altered in England within their sound remembrance; and other three things too too much encreased.” One is, the multitude of chimnies latelie erected, whereas in their yoong daies there were not above two or three, if so manie, in most uplandish townes of the realme, (the religious houses and manor places of their lords alwaies excepted, and peradventure some great personages) but ech one made his fire against a rere dosse in the hall, where he dined and dressed his meat.

“ The second is the great (although not generall) amendment of lodging, for (said they) our fathers (yea and wee ourselves also) have lien full oft upon straw

pallets, on rough mats covered onlie with a shéet, under coverlets made of dagswain or hop harlots (I use their owne termes) and a good round log under their heads instead of a bolster or pillow. If it were so that our fathers, or the good man of the house, had within seven yeares after his mariage purchased a matteres or flockebed, and thereto a sacke of chaffe to rest his head upon, he thought himselfe to be as well lodged as the lord of the towne, that peradventure laie seldome in a bed of downe or whole fethers; so well were they contented, and with such base kind of furniture: which also is not. verie much amended as yet in some parts of Bedfordshire, and elsewhere further off from our southerne parts. Pillowes (said they were thought meet onelie for women in child bed. As for servants, if they had anie sheet above them it was well, for seldome had they anie under their bodies, to keepe them from the pricking straws that ran oft through the canvas of the pallet, and rased their hardened hides.

“ The third thing they tell of, is the exchange of vessell, as of treene platters into pewter, and wodden spoones into silver or tin. For so common was all sorts of tréene stuff in old time, that a man should hardlie find four péeces of pewter, (of which one was peradventure a salt,) in a good farmer's house, and yet for all this frugalitie (if it may so be justly called) they were scarce able to live and paie their rents at their daies without selling of a cow, or an horsse, or more, although they paid but foure pounds at the uttermost by the yeare. Such also was their povertie, that if some ,one od farmer or husbandman had béene at the alehouse, a thing greatlie used in those daies, amongst six or seven of his neighbours, and there in a braverie to shew what store he had, did cast downe his purse, and therein a noble or six shillings in silver unto them (for few such men then cared for gold, because it was not so readie paiment, and

they were oft inforced to give a 'penie for the exchange of an angell) it was verie likelie that all the rest could not laie downe so much against it: whereas in my time, although peradventure foure poundes of old rent be im. proved to fortie, fiftie, or an hundred pounds, yet will the farmer as another palme or date trée thinke his gaines verie small toward the end of his terme, if he have not six or seven yeares rent lieing by him, therewith to purchase a new lease, beside a faire garnish of pewter on his cupbord, with so much in od vessell going about the house, thrée or foure feather beds, so manie coverlids and carpets of tapistrie, a silver salt, a bowle for wine (if not an whole neast) and a dozzen of spoones to furnish up the sute.”

“ To this let me add a quotation from a pastoral of a shepherd youth, which is in itself not only a choice morsel of poetry, but an historical portrait.”

“ Sweet growte, or whig, his bottle had

As much as it might hold:

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And whil'st his py-bald curre did sleepe,

And sheep-hooke lay him by,
On hollow quilles of oten strawe

He piped melody :- .

- - - - - . With the sun

He doth his flocke unfold,
And all the day on hill or plaine

He merrie chat can hold :

And with the sun doth folde againe ;

Then jogging home betime,
He turnes a crab, or tunes a round,

Or sings some merrie ryme :

Nor lackes he gleeful tales to tell,

Whil'st round the bole doth trot;
And sitteth singing care away,

Till he to bed hath got.

Theare sleeps he soundly all the night,

Forgetting morrow cares,
Nor feares he blasting of his corne,

Nor uttering of his wares,

Or stormes by seas, or stirres on land,

Or cracke of credite lost,
Not spending franklier than his flocke

Shall still defray the cost.

Wel wot I, sooth they say that say:

More quiet nightes and daies
The shepheard sleepes and wakes than he

Whose cattel he doth graize." “ As a contrast to this picture of the shepherd lad, let me read to you his companion, from Bishop Earle's work, which I have already quoted.”

THE CLOWN. “ The plain country fellow is one that manures his ground well, but lets himself lye fallow and untilled. He has reason enough to do his business, and not enough to be idle or melancholy. He seems to have the punishment of Nebuchadnezzar, for his conversation is among beasts, and his tallons none of the shortest, only he eats

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