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or rather to their factious humours and were; but I have sent as many several designs; and after their sermons, their messages, or letters, concerning the cap female flocks gossip Scripture, visiting and feathers, as I have heard a lady did to each other to confer notes and make repi- her husband, being in the chief city, and titions of the sermons, as also to explain she in the country, who sent to him to buy and expound them. For, first the minister her a hat and feather, the next week she expounds the Scripture, and then the sent to buy her a hat, but not a feather, women-hearers expound the sermon; so the third week, to buy her a feather but that there are expoundings upon expound- not a hat, the fourth week she would have ings, and preaching upon preaching, in- neither hat nor feather. But I have somuch as they make such a medley or bought a cap, and many feathers, not only hash of the Scripture, as certainly the right that they are in fashion, but for use, for and truth is so hidden and obscured that the hanging, or falling feathers shadow none can find it; and surely the Holy my face from the burning sun, and fan a Spirit, whom they talk so much of, knows gentle air on my face, that cools the sultry not what they mean or preach, being so heat, so that were it not a general fashion, much and such nonsense in their sermons, it should be my particular fashion in sumas God Himself cannot turn to sense. mer time. Indeed, feathers, in my opinBut howsoever, it works on some to a ion, become women better than men, for good effect, and causes as much devotion women are more of the nature of birds amongst many, as if they preached learn- than beasts, not only for their hopping and edly, eloquently, and interpreted rightly, dancing, which resembles flying, but and to the true sense and meaning; for because they are more useless creatures, many sorrowful and penitent tears are for most birds are of no use but to sing, shed. But whether they be bottled up and some to prate, they are neither useful in heaven, I know not: certainly Mary for labor nor war, as most beasts are; 'tis Magdalen could not weep faster for the true, vultures, ravens, crows, and such like time, or fetch deeper sighs, or stronger birds, will be at the end of a battle, but groans for her sins, than they do, which 'tis only to feed on the dead carcasses shows that they have been grievous sin- slain in the battle, like those that feed ners; but whether their sins were of the on the slanders of their sex; also feathers same kind as hers were, I cannot tell, and are light, not for shining, but in weight, I think they would not confess, for con- and so women have light natures; feathers fession they account popish. But truly, are unsteady and restless, so are women and verily, the Lady Puritan who hath both in body and mind; indeed feathers been to visit me this afternoon, hath so and muffs are not so seemly for men as for tired me with her preaching discourse, as women, for how can a man guide his horse, I think I shall not recover my weary spirits or use his sword, when his hands are in a and deafened ears, this two days, unless a muff? Yet it was all the fashion the last quiet sleep cure me. Nay, she hath so winter for men to wear muffs, tied to a filled my head with words, as I doubt it long string about their necks, the muffs will hinder my silent repose; howsoever hanging at the lower end of the string, I'll try: and so taking my leave as going and when they had an occasion to lay by to bed, I rest, Madam,
their muffs, they flung them behind their Your faithful fr. and s.
backs, which seems like as poor, beggarly
soldiers' knapsacks, or as tinkers' budgets, ON FEATHERS, MUFFS, AND
and the string about their neck seems like SWORDS
as if they were going to be hanged for MADAM, I shall not trouble you now stealing some bread and cheese, or for to buy the round of feathers that came out robbing an apple-orchard, or for stealing of France, for I have one made here in this ragged linen off the hedges, or some such town both cheaper and better than those petty, or worthless things.
axiom in philosophy. There are no groA WINTER CITY
tesques in nature; not any thing framed MADAM, If you were here in this city, to fill up empty cantons, and unnecessary now all the ground of the streets is covered spaces. In the most imperfect creatures, with snow, you would see the young men and such as were not preserved in the ark, and their mistresses ride in sleds by torch- but, having their seeds and principles in light, the women and the men dressed the womb of nature, are everywhere, where anticly, as also their horses that draw their
the power of the sun is, — in these is the sleds; and then every sled having a fair wisdom of his hand discovered. Out of lady, at least to her lover's thinking, sitting this rank Solomon chose the object of his at one end of the sled, dressed with admiration ; indeed, what reason may not feathers and rich clothes, and her courting go to school to the wisdom of bees, ants, servant like a coachman, or rather a carter, and spiders? What wise hand teacheth bravely accoutred, driving the horses with them to do what reason cannot teach us? a whip, which draw the sled upon the snow Ruder heads stand amazed at those prodigwith a galloping pace, whilst footmen ious pieces of nature, whales, elephants, run with torches to light them. But dromedaries, and camels; these, I confess, many of these lovers, not using to drive are the colossus and majestic pieces of her horses so often as court mistresses, for want hand; but in these narrow engines there of skill overturn the sled, and so tumble is more curious mathematics; and the down their mistresses in the snow, where- civility of these little citizens more neatly upon they being in a frighted haste, take sets forth the wisdom of their Maker. them up from that cold bed, and then the Who admires not Regio Montanus his fly mistress appears like a pale ghost, or dead beyond his eagle; or wonders not more body in a winding sheet, being all covered at the operation of two souls in those little with white snow; and the sled, when the bodies than but one in the trunk of a cedar? mistress is seated again, instead of a I could never content my contemplation triumphant chair, seems like a virgin's with those general pieces of wonder, the funeral herse, carried, and buried by torch- flux and reflux of the sea, the increase of light; and her feathers seem like a silver Nile, the conversion of the needle to the crown, that usually is laid thereon, also north; and have studied to match and the sled is drawn then in a slow, funeral parallel those in the more obvious and pace, for fear of a second fall.
neglected pieces of nature which, without custom and practice you may know, we farther travel, I can do in the cosmography have here recreations for every season of of myself. We carry with us the wonders the year, and as the old saying is, that pride we seek without us: there is all Africa and in winter is never cold, so it may here be her prodigies in us. We are that bold and said, that love in winter is never cold; adventurous piece of nature, which he indeed, I have heard say, that love is hot, that studies wisely learns, in a compenand to my apprehension it must be a very dium, what others labour at in a divided hot amorous love that is not cold this
piece and endless volume. weather. But leaving the hot lovers in Thus there are two books from whence I the cold snow, I rest, by the fireside, collect my divinity. Besides that written Madam,
one of God, another of his servant, nature, Your very faithful friend and servant. that universal and public manuscript, that
lies expansed unto the eyes of all. Those SIR THOMAS BROWNE
that never saw him in the one have disTHE EXCELLENCY OF NATURE
covered him in the other : this was the
scripture and theology of the heathens ; From RELIGIO MEDICI
the natural motion of the sun made them Natura nihil agit frustra, (nature makes more admire him than its supernatural nothing in vain) is the only indisputable station did the children of Israel. The
ordinary effects of nature wrought more elephant ugly; they being created in those admiration in them than, in the other, outward shapes and figures which best all his miracles. Surely the heathens knew express the actions of their inward forms; better how to join and read these mystical and having passed that general visitation letters than we Christians, who cast a of God, who saw that all that he had made more careless eye on these common hiero- was good, that is, conformable to his will, glyphics, and disdain to suck divinity from which abhors deformity, and is the rule of the flowers of nature. Nor do I so forget order and beauty. There is no deformity God as to adore the name of nature; which but in monstrosity; wherein, notwithI define not, with the schools, to be the standing, there is a kind of beauty; nature principle of motion and rest, but that so ingeniously contriving the irregular straight and regular line, that settled and parts, as they become sometimes more constant course the wisdom of God hath remarkable than the principal fabric. To ordained the actions of his creatures, speak yet more narrowly, there was never according to their several kinds. To make any thing ugly or mis-shapen, but the a revolution every day is the nature of the chaos; wherein, notwithstanding, to speak sun, because of that necessary course which strictly, there was no deformity, because God hath ordained it, from which it cannot no form ; nor was it yet impregnant by the swerve but by a faculty from that voice voice of God. Now nature is not at which first did give it motion. Now this variance with art, nor art with nature; course of nature God seldom alters or they being both the servants of his proviperverts; but, like an excellent artist, dence. Art is the perfection of nature. hath so contrived his work, that, with the Were the world now as it was the sixth day, self-same instrument, without a new crea- there were yet a chaos. Nature hath made tion, he may effect his obscurest designs. one world, and art another. In brief, all Thus he sweeteneth the water with a word, things are artificial; for nature is the art preserveth the creatures in the ark, which of God. the blast of his mouth might have as easily
JOHN SELDEN created; for God is like a skilful geometrician, who, when more easily, and with
DEVILS one stroke of his compass, he might de-'
From TABLE-TALK scribe or divide a right line, had yet rather do this in a circle or longer way, according Why have we none possessed with devils to the constituted and forelaid principles of in England? The old answer is, the his art : yet this rule of his he doth some- Protestants the Devil hath already, and times pervert, to acquaint the world with the Papists are so holy he dares not meddle his prerogative, lest the arrogancy of our with them. Why then beyond seas where reason should question his power, and a nun is possessed, when a Huguenot conclude he could not. And thus I call the comes into the Church, does not the Devil effects of nature the works of God, whose hunt them out? The priest teaches him hand and instrument she only is; and you never saw the Devil throw up a nun's therefore, to ascribe his actions unto her is coats; mark that, the priest will not to devolve the honour of the principal suffer it, for then the people will spit at agent upon the instrument; which if with him. reason we may do, then let our hammers Casting out devils is mere juggling; they rise up and boast they have built our never cast out any but what they first houses, and our pens receive the honour cast in. They do it where for reverence of our writing. I hold there is a general no man shall dare to examine it; they do beauty in the works of God, and therefore it in a corner, in a mortise-hole, not in the no deformity in any kind of species of market place. They do nothing but what creature whatsoever. I cannot tell by may be done by art; they make the Devil what logic we call a toad, a bear, or an fly out of the window in the likeness of a bat or a rat: why do they not hold him? other two likewise." So I gave him Why in the likeness of a bat or a rat or another thing to hang about his neck. some creature? That is, why not in Three days after he came to me to my some shape we paint him in, with claws chamber, and professed he was now as or horns? By this trick they gain much, well as ever he was in his life, and did gain upon men's fancies, and so are rev- extremely thank me for the great care erenced; and certainly, if the priest I had taken of him. I, fearing lest he deliver me from him that is my most might relapse into the same like distemper, deadly enemy, I have all the reason in the told him that there was none but myself world to reverence him. Objection: But, and one physician more in the whole town if this be juggling, why do they punish that could cure devils in the head, and that impostures? Answer: For great reason, was Dr. Harvey (whom I had prepared), because they do not play their part well, and wished him, if ever he found himself ill and for fear others should discover them; in my absence, to go to him, for he could and so all of them ought to be of the same cure his disease as well as myself. The trade.
gentleman lived many years and was never A person of quality came to my chamber troubled after. in the temple, and told me he had two devils in his head (I wondered what he
EDWARD HYDE, EARL OF meant), and just at that time one of them
CLARENDON bid him kill me: with that I begun to be afraid, and thought he was mad. He
A BULL-FIGHT said he knew I could cure him, and there
From the LIFE OF EDWARD HYDE fore entreated me to give him something, for he was resolved he would go to nobody HERE the place was very noble, being else. I, perceiving what an opinion he the market-place, a very large square, had of me and that 'twas only melancholy built with handsome brick houses, which that troubled him, took him in hand, had all balconies, which were adorned with warranted him if he would follow my tapestry and very beautiful ladies, Scaf. directions to cure him in a short time. I folds were built round to the first story, desired him to let me be alone about an the lower rooms being shops, and for hour and then to come again, which he was ordinary use; and in the division of those very willing to. In the meantime I got scaffolds, all the magistrates and officers a card, and lapped it up handsome in a of the town knew their places. The pavepiece of taffeta, and put strings to the ment of the place was all covered with taffeta, and, when he came gave it him gravel (which in summer time was upon to hang about his neck — withal charged these occasions watered by carts charged him that he should not disorder himself with hogsheads of water). As soon as neither with eating or drinking, but eat the king comes, some officers clear the very little of supper, and say his prayers whole ground from the common people, duly when he went to bed, and I made no so that there is no man seen upon the plain question but he would be well in three or but two or three alguazils, magistrates four days. Within that time I went to with their small white wands. Then one dinner to his house, and asked him how he of the four gates which leads into the did. He said he was much better but not streets is opened, at which the torreadors perfectly well, or in truth he had not dealt enter, all persons of quality richly clad, clearly with me. He had four devils in and upon the best horses of Spain, every his head, and he perceived two of them one attended by eight or ten or more were gone with that which I had given him, lackeys, all clinquant with gold and silver but the other two troubled him still. lace, who carry the spears, which their “Well,” said I, “I am glad two of them are masters are to use against the bulls; and gone; I make no doubt but to get away the with this entry many of the common people break in, for which sometimes they back. Sometimes, by the strength of his pay very dear. The persons on horseback neck, he raises horse and man from the have all cloaks folded upon their left ground, and throws both down, and then shoulder, the least disorder of which, much the greatest danger is another gore upon more the letting it fall, is a very great dis- the ground. In any of these disgraces, or grace; and in that grave order they march any other by which the rider comes to be to the place where the king sits, and after dismounted, he is obliged in honour to take they have made their reverences, they his revenge upon the bull by his sword, place themselves at a good distance from and upon his head, towards which the one another, and expect the bull. The standers by assist him by running after
, bulls are brought in the night before from the bull and hocking him, by which he the mountains by the people used to that falls upon his hinder legs; but before that work, who drive them into the town when execution can be done, a good bull hath nobody is in the streets, into a pen made his revenge upon many poor fellows. for them, which hath a door, which opens Sometimes he is so unruly that nobody into that large space; the key whereof is dares to attack him, and then the king sent to the king, which the king when he calls for his mastiffs, whereof two are let sees everything ready, throws to an out at a time, and if they cannot master alguazil, who carries it to the officer that him, but are themselves killed, as frekeeps the door, and he causes it to be quently they are, the king then, as a last opened, when a single bull is ready to refuge, calls for the English mastiffs, of come out. When the bull enters, the which they seldom turn above one at a common people, who sit over the door or time; and he rarely misses of taking the near it, strike him, or throw short darts bull and holding him by the nose till the with sharp points of steel, to provoke him men run in; and after they have hocked to rage. He commonly runs with all his him, they quickly kill him. In one of fury against the first man he sees on horse- those days there were no fewer than sixback, who watches him so carefully, and teen horses, as good as any in Spain, the avoids him so dexterously, that when the worst of which would that very morning spectators believe him to be even between have yielded three hundred pistoles, the horns of the bull, he avoids by the killed, and four or five men, besides many quick turn of his horse, and with his lance more of both hurt: and some men remain strikes the bull upon a vein that runs perpetually maimed: for after the horsethrough his pole, with which in a moment men have done as much as they can, they he falls down dead. But this fatal stroke withdraw themselves, and then can never be struck, but when the bull accustomed nimble fellows, to whom comes so near upon the turn of the horse, money is thrown when they perform their that his horn even touches the rider's leg, feats with skill, stand to receive the bull, and so is at such a distance that he can whereof the worst are reserved to the last : shorten his lance, and use the full strength and it is a wonderful thing to see with what of his arm in the blow. And they who are steadiness those fellows will stand a full the most skilful in the exercise do fre- career of the bull, and by a little quick quently kill the beast with such an exact motion upon one foot avoid him, and lay stroke, insomuch as in a day two or three a hand upon his horn, as if he guided him fall in that manner : but if they miss the from him; but then the next standers by, vein, it only gives a wound that the more who have not the same activity, commonly enrages him. Sometimes the bull runs pay for it, and there is no day without with so much fierceness, (for if he escapes much mischief. It is a very barbarous the first man, he runs upon the rest as they exercise and triumph, in which so many are in his way), that he gores the horse men's lives are lost, and always ventured; with his horns, and his guts come out, and but so rooted in the affections of that he falls before the rider can get from his nation, that it is not in the king's power,