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The FRANCISCANS, [Greek: Ptôchoplousioi], or RICH BEGGARS.


The Franciscans, or rich poor Persons, are not admitted into the House of a Country Parson. Pandocheus jokes wittily upon them. The Habit is not to be accounted odious. The Life and Death of the Franciscans. Of the foolish Pomp of Habits. The Habits of Monks are not in themselves evil. What Sort of Persons Monks ought to be. The Use of Garments is for Necessity and Decency. What Decency is. Whence arose the Variety of Habits and Garments among the Monks. That there was in old Time no Superstition in the Habits.

CONRADE, a Bernardine Monk, a Parson, an Inn-Keeper and his

Con. Hospitality becomes a Pastor.

Pars. But I am a Pastor of Sheep; I don't love Wolves.

Con. But perhaps you don't hate a Wench so much. But what Harm have we done you, that you have such an Aversion to us, that you won't so much as admit us under your Roof? We won't put you to the Charge of a Supper.

Pars. I'll tell ye, because if you spy but a Hen or a Chicken in a Body's House, I should be sure to hear of it to-Morrow in the Pulpit. This is the Gratitude you shew for your being entertain'd.

Con. We are not all such Blabs.

Pars. Well, be what you will, I'd scarce put Confidence in St. Peter himself, if he came to me in such a Habit.

Con. If that be your Resolution, at least tell us where is an Inn.

Pars. There's a publick Inn here in the Town.

Con. What Sign has it?

Pars. Upon a Board that hangs up, you will see a Dog thrusting his Head into a Porridge-Pot: This is acted to the Life in the Kitchen; and a Wolf sits at the Bar.

Con. That's an unlucky Sign.

Pars. You may e'en make your best on't.

Ber. What Sort of a Pastor is this? we might be starv'd for him.

Con. If he feeds his Sheep no better than he feeds us, they must needs be very lean.

Ber. In a difficult Case, we had Need of good Counsel: What shall we do?

Con. We must set a good Face on't.

Ber. There's little to be gotten by Modesty, in a Case of Necessity.

Con. Very right, St. Francis will be with us.

Ber. Let's try our Fortune then.

Con. We won't stay for our Host's Answer at the Door, but we'll rush directly into the Stove, and we won't easily be gotten out again.

Ber. O impudent Trick!

Con. This is better than to lie abroad all Night, and be frozen to Death. In the mean Time, put Bashfulness in your Wallet to Day, and take it out again to-Morrow.

Ber. Indeed, the Matter requires it.

Innk. What Sort of Animals do I see here?

Con. We are the Servants of God, and the Sons of St. Francis, good Man.

Innk. I don't know what Delight God may take in such Servants; but I would not have many of them in my House.

Con. Why so?

Innk. Because at Eating and Drinking, you are more than Men; but you have neither Hands nor Feet to work. Ha, ha! You Sons of St. Francis, you use to tell us in the Pulpit, that he was a pure Batchelor, and has he got so many Sons?

Con. We are the Children of the Spirit, not of the Flesh.

Innk. A very unhappy Father, for your Mind is the worst Part about you; but your Bodies are too lusty, and as to that Part of you, it is better with you, than 'tis for our Interest, who have Wives and Daughters.

Con. Perhaps you suspect that we are some of those that degenerate from the Institutions of our Founder; we are strict Observers of them.

Innk. And I'll observe you too, that you don't do me any Damage, for I have a mortal Aversion for this Sort of Cattle.

Con. Why so, I pray?

Innk. Because you carry Teeth in your Head, but no Money in your Pocket; and such Sort of Guests are very unwelcome to me.

Con. But we take Pains for you.

Innk. Shall I shew you after what Manner you labour for me?

Con. Do, shew us.

Innk. Look upon that Picture there, just by you, on your left Hand, there you'll see a Wolf a Preaching, and behind him a Goose, thrusting her Head out of a Cowl: There again, you'll see a Wolf absolving one at Confession; but a Piece of a Sheep, hid under his Gown, hangs out. There you see an Ape in a Franciscan's Habit, he holds forth a Cross in one Hand, and has the other Hand in the sick Man's Purse.

Con. We don't deny, but sometimes Wolves, Foxes and Apes are cloathed with this Habit, nay we confess oftentimes that Swine, Dogs, Horses, Lions and Basilisks are conceal'd under it; but then the same Garment covers many honest Men. As a Garment makes no Body better, so it makes no Body worse. It is unjust to judge of a Man by his Cloaths; for if so, the Garment that you wear sometimes were to be accounted detestable, because it covers many Thieves, Murderers, Conjurers, and Whoremasters.

Innk. Well, I'll dispense with your Habit, if you'll but pay your Reckonings.

Con. We'll pray to God for you.

Innk. And I'll pray to God for you, and there's one for t'other.

Con. But there are some Persons that you must not take Money of.

Innk. How comes it that you make a Conscience of touching any?

Con. Because it does not consist with our Profession.

Innk. Nor does it stand with my Profession to entertain Guests for nothing.

Con. But we are tied up by a Rule not to touch Money.

Innk. And my Rule commands me quite the contrary.

Con. What Rule is yours?

Innk. Read those Verses:

Guests at this Table, when you've eat while you're able. Rise not hence before you have first paid your Score.

Con. We'll be no Charge to you.

Innk. But they that are no Charge to me are no Profit to me neither.

Con. If you do us any good Office here, God will make it up to you sufficiently.

Innk. But these Words won't keep my Family.

Con. We'll hide ourselves in some Corner of the Stove, and won't be troublesome to any Body.

Innk. My Stove won't hold such Company.

Con. What, will you thrust us out of Doors then? It may be we shall be devour'd by Wolves to Night.

Innk. Neither Wolves nor Dogs will prey upon their own Kind.

Con. If you do so you will be more cruel than the Turks. Let us be what we will, we are Men.

Innk. I have lost my Hearing.

Con. You indulge your Corps, and lye naked in a warm Bed behind the Stove, and will you thrust us out of Doors to be perish'd with Cold, if the Wolves should not devour us?

Innk. Adam liv'd so in Paradise.

Con. He did so, but then he was innocent.

Innk. And so am I innocent.

Con. Perhaps so, leaving out the first Syllable. But take Care, if you thrust us out of your Paradise, lest God should not receive you into his.

Innk. Good Words, I beseech you.

Wife. Prithee, my Dear, make some Amends for all your ill Deeds by this small Kindness, let them stay in our House to Night: They are good Men, and thou'lt thrive the better for't.

Innk. Here's a Reconciler for you. I'm afraid you're agreed upon the Matter. I don't very well like to hear this good Character from a Woman; Good Men!

Wife. Phoo, there's nothing in it. But think with your self how often you have offended God with Dicing, Drinking, Brawling, Quarrelling. At least, make an Atonement for your Sins by this Act of Charity, and don't thrust these Men out of Doors, whom you would wish to be with you when you are upon your Death-Bed. You oftentimes harbour Rattles and Buffoons, and will you thrust these Men out of Doors?

Innk. What does this Petticoat-Preacher do here? Get you in, and mind your Kitchen.

Wife. Well, so I will.

Bert. The Man softens methinks, and he is taking his Shirt, I hope all will be well by and by.

Con. And the Servants are laying the Cloth. It is happy for us that no Guests come, for we should have been sent packing if they had.

Bert. It fell out very happily that we brought a Flaggon of Wine from the last Town we were at, and a roasted Leg of Lamb, or else, for what I see here, he would not have given us so much as a Mouthful of Hay.

Con. Now the Servants are set down, let's take Part of the Table with them, but so that we don't incommode any Body.

Innk. I believe I may put it to your Score, that I have not a Guest to Day, nor any besides my own Family, and you good-for-nothing ones.

Con. Well, put it up to our Score, if it has not happened to you often.

Innk. Oftner than I would have it so.

Con. Well, don't be uneasy; Christ lives, and he'll never forsake his Servants.

Innk. I have heard you are call'd evangelical Men; but the Gospel forbids carrying about Satchels and Bread, but I see you have great Sleeves for Wallets, and you don't only carry Bread, but Wine too, and Flesh also, and that of the best Sort.

Con. Take Part with us, if you please.

Innk. My Wine is Hog-Wash to it.

Con. Eat some of the Flesh, there is more than enough for us.

Innk. O happy Beggars! My Wife has dress'd nothing to Day, but Coleworts and a little rusty Bacon.

Con. If you please, let us join our Stocks; it is all one to us what we eat.

Innk. Then why don't you carry with you Coleworts and dead Wine?

Con. Because the People where we din'd to Day would needs force this upon us.

Innk. Did your Dinner cost you nothing?

Con. No. Nay they thanked us, and when we came away gave us these Things to carry along with us.

Innk. From whence did you come?

Con. From Basil.

Innk. Whoo! what so far?

Con. Yes.

Innk. What Sort of Fellows are you that ramble about thus without Horses, Money, Servants, Arms, or Provisions?

Con. You see in us some Footsteps of the evangelical Life.

Innk. It seems to me to be the Life of Vagabonds, that stroll about with Budgets.

Con. Such Vagabonds the Apostles were, and such was the Lord Jesus himself.

Innk. Can you tell Fortunes?

Con. Nothing less.

Innk. How do you live then?

Con. By him, who hath promised.

Innk. Who is he?

Con. He that said, Take no Care, but all Things shall be added unto you.

Innk. He did so promise, but it was to them that seek the Kingdom of God.

Con. That we do with all our Might.

Innk. The Apostles were famous for Miracles; they heal'd the Sick, so that it is no Wonder how they liv'd every where, but you can do no such Thing.

Con. We could, if we were like the Apostles, and if the Matter requir'd a Miracle. But Miracles were only given for a Time for the Conviction of the Unbelieving; there is no Need of any Thing now, but a religious Life. And it is oftentimes a greater Happiness to be sick than to be well, and more happy to die than to live.

Innk. What do you do then?

Con. That we can; every Man according to the Talent that God has given him. We comfort, we exhort, we warn, we reprove, and when Opportunity offers, sometimes we preach, if we any where find Pastors that are dumb: And if we find no Opportunity of doing Good, we take Care to do no Body any Harm, either by our Manners or our Words.

Innk. I wish you would preach for us to Morrow, for it is a Holy-Day.

Con. For what Saint?

Innk. To St. Antony.

Con. He was indeed a good Man. But how came he to have a Holiday?

Innk. I'll tell you. This Town abounds with Swine-Herds, by Reason of a large Wood hard by that produces Plenty of Acorns; and the People have an Opinion that St. Antony takes Charge of the Hogs, and therefore they worship him, for Fear he should grow angry, if they neglect him.

Con. I wish they would worship him as they ought to do.

Innk. How's that?

Con. Whosoever imitates the Saints in their Lives, worships as he ought to do.

Innk. To-morrow the Town will ring again with Drinking and Dancing, Playing, Scolding and Boxing.

Con. After this Manner the Heathens once worshipped their Bacchus. But I wonder, if this is their Way of worshipping, that St. Antony is not enraged at this Sort of Men that are more stupid than Hogs themselves. What Sort of a Pastor have you? A dumb one, or a wicked one?

Innk. What he is to other People, I don't know: But he's a very good one to me, for he drinks all Day at my House, and no Body brings more Customers or better, to my great Advantage. And I wonder he is not here now.

Con. We have found by Experience he is not a very good one for our Turn.

Innk. What! Did you go to him then?

Con. We intreated him to let us lodge with him, but he chas'd us away from the Door, as if we had been Wolves, and sent us hither.

Innk. Ha, ha. Now I understand the Matter, he would not come because he knew you were to be here.

Con. Is he a dumb one?

Innk. A dumb one! There's no Body is more noisy in the Stove, and he makes the Church ring again. But I never heard him preach. But no Need of more Words. As far as I understand, he has made you sensible that he is none of the dumb Ones.

Con. Is he a learned Divine?

Innk. He says he is a very great Scholar; but what he knows is what he has learned in private Confession, and therefore it is not lawful to let others know what he knows. What need many Words? I'll tell you in short; like People, like Priest; and the Dish, as we say, wears its own Cover.

Con. It may be he will not give a Man Liberty to preach in his Place.

Innk. Yes, I'll undertake he will, but upon this Condition, that you don't have any Flirts at him, as it is a common Practice for you to do.

Con. They have us'd themselves to an ill Custom that do so. If a Pastor offends in any Thing, I admonish him privately, the rest is the Bishop's Business.

Innk. Such Birds seldom fly hither. Indeed you seem to be good Men yourselves. But, pray, what's the Meaning of this Variety of Habits? For a great many People take you to be ill Men by your Dress.

Con. Why so?

Innk. I can't tell, except it be that they find a great many of you to be so.

Con. And many again take us to be holy Men, because we wear this Habit. They are both in an Error: But they err less that take us to be good Men by our Habit, than they that take us for base Men.

Innk. Well, so let it be. But what is the Advantage of so many different Dresses?

Con. What is your Opinion?

Innk. Why I see no Advantage at all, except in Processions, or War. For in Processions there are carried about various Representations of Saints, of Jews, and Heathens, and we know which is which, by the different Habits. And in War the Variety of Dress is good, that every one may know his own Company, and follow his own Colours, so that there may be no Confusion in the Army.

Con. You say very well: This is a military Garment, one of us follows one Leader, and another another; but we all fight under one General, Christ. But in a Garment there are three Things to be consider'd.

Innk. What are they?

Con. Necessity, Use, and Decency. Why do we eat?

Innk. That we mayn't be starv'd with Hunger.

Con. And for the very same Reason we take a Garment that we mayn't be starv'd with Cold.

Innk. I confess it.

Con. This Garment of mine is better for that than yours. It covers the Head, Neck, and Shoulders, from whence there is the most Danger. Use requires various Sorts of Garments. A short Coat for a Horseman, a long one for one that sits still, a thin one in Summer, a thick one in Winter. There are some at Rome, that change their Cloaths three Times a Day; in the Morning they take a Coat lin'd with Fur, about Noon they take a single one, and towards Night one that is a little thicker; but every one is not furnish'd with this Variety; therefore this Garment of ours is contriv'd so, that this one will serve for various Uses.

Innk. How is that?

Con. If the North Wind blow, or the Sun shines hot, we put on our Cowl; if the Heat is troublesome, we let it down behind. If we are to sit still, we let down our Garment about our Heels, if we are to walk, we hold or tuck it up.

Innk. He was no Fool, whosoever he was, that contriv'd it.

Con. And it is the chief Thing in living happily, for a Man to accustom himself to be content with a few Things: For if once we begin to indulge ourselves with Delicacies and Sensualities, there will be no End; and there is no one Garment could be invented, that could answer so many Purposes.

Innk. I allow that.

Con. Now let us consider the Decency of it: Pray tell me honestly, if you should put on your Wife's Cloaths, would not every one say that you acted indecently?

Innk. They would say I was mad.

Con. And what would you say, if she should put on your Cloaths?

Innk. I should not say much perhaps, but I should cudgel her handsomly.

Con. But then, how does it signify nothing what Garment any one wears?

Innk. O yes, in this Case it is very material.

Con. Nor is that strange; for the Laws of the very Pagans inflict a Punishment on either Man or Woman, that shall wear the Cloaths of a different Sex.

Innk. And they are in the Right for it.

Con. But, come on. What if an old Man of fourscore should dress himself like a Boy of fifteen; or if a young Man dress himself like an old Man, would not every one say he ought to be bang'd for it? Or if an old Woman should attire herself like a young Girl, and the contrary?

Innk. No doubt.

Con. In like Manner, if a Lay-Man should wear a Priest's Habit, and a Priest a Lay-Man's.

Innk. They would both act unbecomingly.

Con. What if a private Man should put on the Habit of a Prince, or an inferior Clergy-Man that of a Bishop? Would he act unhandsomely or no?

Innk. Certainly he would.

Con. What if a Citizen should dress himself like a Soldier, with a Feather in his Cap, and other Accoutrements of a hectoring Soldier?

Innk. He would be laugh'd at.

Con. What if any English Ensign should carry a white Cross in his Colours, a Swiss a red one, a French Man a black one?

Innk. He would act impudently.

Con. Why then do you wonder so much at our Habit?

Innk. I know the Difference between a private Man and a Prince, between a Man and a Woman; but I don't understand the Difference between a Monk and no Monk.

Con. What Difference is there between a poor Man and a rich Man?

Innk. Fortune.

Con. And yet it would be unbecoming a poor Man to imitate a rich Man in his Dress.

Innk. Very true, as rich Men go now a-Days.

Con. What Difference is there between a Fool and a wise Man?

Innk. Something more than there is between a rich Man and a poor Man.

Con. Are not Fools dress'd up in a different Manner from wise Men?

Innk. I can't tell how well it becomes you, but your Habit does not differ much from theirs, if it had but Ears and Bells.

Con. These indeed are wanting, and we are the Fools of this World, if we really are what we pretend to be.

Innk. What you are I don't know; but this I know that there are a great many Fools that wear Ears and Bells, that have more Wit than those that wear Caps lin'd with Furs, Hoods, and other Ensigns of wise Men; therefore it seems a ridiculous Thing to me to make a Shew of Wisdom by the Dress rather than in Fact. I saw a certain Man, more than a Fool, with a Gown hanging down to his Heels, a Cap like our Doctors, and had the Countenance of a grave Divine; he disputed publickly with a Shew of Gravity, and he was as much made on by great Men, as any of their Fools, and was more a Fool than any of them.

Con. Well, what would you infer from that? That a Prince who laughs at his Jester should change Coats with him?

Innk. Perhaps Decorum would require it to be so, if your Proposition be true, that the Mind of a Man is represented by his Habit.

Con. You press this upon me indeed, but I am still of the Opinion, that there is good Reason for giving Fools distinct Habits.

Innk. What Reason?

Con. That no Body might hurt them, if they say or do any Thing that's foolish.

Innk. But on the contrary, I won't say, that their Dress does rather provoke some People to do them Hurt; insomuch, that oftentimes of Fools they become Mad-Men. Nor do I see any Reason, why a Bull that gores a Man, or a Dog, or a Hog that kills a Child, should be punish'd, and a Fool who commits greater Crimes should be suffered to live under the Protection of his Folly. But I ask you, what is the Reason that you are distinguished from others by your Dress? For if every trifling Cause is sufficient to require a different Habit, then a Baker should wear a different Dress from a Fisherman, and a Shoemaker from a Taylor, an Apothecary from a Vintner, a Coachman from a Mariner. And you, if you are Priests, why do you wear a Habit different from other Priests? If you are Laymen, why do you differ from us?

Con. In antient Times, Monks were only the purer Sort of the Laity, and there was then only the same Difference between a Monk and a Layman, as between a frugal, honest Man, that maintains his Family by his Industry, and a swaggering Highwayman that lives by robbing. Afterwards the Bishop of Rome bestow'd Honours upon us; and we ourselves gave some Reputation to the Habit, which now is neither simply laick, or sacerdotal; but such as it is, some Cardinals and Popes have not been ashamed to wear it.

Innk. But as to the Decorum of it, whence comes that?

Con. Sometimes from the Nature of Things themselves, and sometimes from Custom and the Opinions of Men. Would not all Men think it ridiculous for a Man to wear a Bull's Hide, with the Horns on his Head, and the Tail trailing after him on the Ground?

Innk. That would be ridiculous enough.

Con. Again, if any one should wear a Garment that should hide his Face, and his Hands, and shew his privy Members?

Innk. That would be more ridiculous than the other.

Con. The very Pagan Writers have taken Notice of them that have wore Cloaths so thin, that it were indecent even for Women themselves to wear such. It is more modest to be naked, as we found you in the Stove, than to wear a transparent Garment.

Innk. I fancy that the whole of this Matter of Apparel depends upon Custom and the Opinion of People.

Con. Why so?

Innk. It is not many Days ago, since some Travellers lodg'd at my House, who said, that they had travelled through divers Countries lately discovered, which are wanting in the antient Maps. They said they came to an Island of a very temperate Air, where they look'd upon it as the greatest Indecency in the World, to cover their Bodies.

Con. It may be they liv'd like Beasts.

Innk. Nay, they said they liv'd a Life of great Humanity, they liv'd under a King, they attended him to Work every Morning daily, but not above an Hour in a Day.

Con. What Work did they do?

Innk. They pluck'd up a certain Sort of Roots that serves them instead of Bread, and is more pleasant and more wholsome than Bread; and when this was done, they every one went to his Business, what he had a Mind to do. They bring up their Children religiously, they avoid and punish Vices, but none more severely than Adultery.

Con. What's the Punishment?

Innk. They forgive the Women, for it is permitted to that Sex. But for Men that are taken in Adultery, this is the Punishment, that all his Life after, he should appear in publick with his privy Parts covered.

Con. A mighty Punishment indeed!

Innk. Custom has made it to them the very greatest Punishment that is.

Con. When I consider the Force of Persuasion, I am almost ready to allow it. For if a Man would expose a Thief or a Murderer to the greatest Ignominy, would it not be a sufficient Punishment to cut off a Piece of the hinder Part of his Cloaths, and sow a Piece of a Wolf's Skin upon his Buttocks, to make him wear a party-colour'd Pair of Stockings, and to cut the fore Part of his Doublet in the Fashion of a Net, leaving his Shoulders and his Breast bare; to shave off one Side of his Beard, and leave the other hanging down, and curl one Part of it, and to put him a Cap on his Head, cut and slash'd, with a huge Plume of Feathers, and so expose him publickly; would not this make him more ridiculous than to put him on a Fool's Cap with long Ears and Bells? And yet Soldiers dress themselves every Day in this Trim, and are well enough pleased with themselves, and find Fools enough, that like the Dress too, though there is nothing more ridiculous.

Innk. Nay, there are topping Citizens too, who imitate them as much as they can possibly.

Con. But now if a Man should dress himself up with Birds Feathers like an Indian, would not the very Boys, all of them, think he was a mad Man?

Innk. Stark mad.

Con. And yet, that which we admire, savours of a greater Madness still: Now as it is true, that nothing is so ridiculous but Custom will bear it out; so it cannot be denied, but that there is a certain Decorum in Garments, which all wise Men always account a Decorum; and that there is also an Unbecomingness in Garments, which will to wise Men always seem unbecoming. Who does not laugh, when he sees a Woman dragging a long Train at her Heels, as if her Quality were to be measured by the Length of her Tail? And yet some Cardinals are not asham'd to follow this Fashion in their Gowns: And so prevalent a Thing is Custom, that there is no altering of a Fashion that has once obtain'd.

Innk. Well, we have had Talk enough about Custom: But tell me now, whether you think it better for Monks to differ from others in Habit, or not to differ?

Con. I think it to be more agreeable to Christian Simplicity, not to judge of any Man by his Habit, if it be but sober and decent.

Innk. Why don't you cast away your Cowls then?

Con. Why did not the Apostles presently eat of all Sorts of Meat?

Innk. I can't tell. Do you tell me that.

Con. Because an invincible Custom hinder'd it: For whatsoever is deeply rooted in the Minds of Men, and has been confirm'd by long Use, and is turn'd as it were into Nature, can never be remov'd on a sudden, without endangering the publick Peace; but must be remov'd by Degrees, as a Horse's Tail is pluck'd off by single Hairs.

Innk. I could bear well enough with it, if the Monks had all but one Habit: But who can bear so many different Habits?

Con. Custom has brought in this Evil, which brings in every Thing. Benedict did not invent a new Habit, but the same that he wore himself and his Disciples, which was the Habit of a plain, honest Layman: Neither did Francis invent a new Dress; but it was the Dress of poor Country-Fellows. Their Successors have by new Additions turned it into Superstition. Don't we see some old Women at this Day, that keep to the Dress of their Times, which is more different from the Dress now in Fashion, than my Dress is from yours?

Innk. We do see it.

Con. Therefore, when you see this Habit, you see only the Reliques of antient Times.

Innk. Why then, has your Garment no Holiness in it?

Con. None at all.

Innk. There are some of you that make their Boasts that these Dresses were divinely directed by the holy Virgin Mother.

Con. These Stories are but meer Dreams.

Innk. Some despair of being able to recover from a Fit of Sickness, unless they be wrapp'd up in a Dominican's Habit: Nay, nor won't be buried but in a Franciscan's Habit.

Con. They that persuade People of those Things, are either Cheats or Fools, and they that believe them are superstitious. God will know a wicked Man as well in a Franciscan's Habit, as in a Soldier's Coat.

Innk. There is not so much Variety in the Feathers of Birds of the Air, as there is in your Habits.

Con. What then, is it not a very good Thing to imitate Nature? But it is a better Thing to out-do it.

Innk. I wish you would out-do it in the Variety of your Beaks too.

Con. But, come on. I will be an Advocate for Variety, if you will give me Leave. Is not a Spaniard dressed after one Fashion, an Italian after another, a Frenchman after another, a German after another, a Greek after another, a Turk after another, and a Sarazen after another?

Innk. Yes.

Con. And then in the same Country, what Variety of Garments is there in Persons of the same Sex, Age and Degree. How different is the Dress of the Venetian from the Florentine, and of both from the Roman, and this only within Italy alone?

Innk. I believe it.

Con. And from hence also came our Variety. Dominic he took his Dress from the honest Ploughmen in that Part of Spain in which he liv'd; and Benedict from the Country-Fellows of that Part of Italy in which he liv'd; and Francis from the Husbandmen of a different Place, and so for the rest.

Innk. So that for aught I find, you are no holier than we, unless you live holier.

Con. Nay, we are worse than you, in that; if we live wickedly, we are a greater Stumbling to the Simple.

Innk. Is there any Hope of us then, who have neither Patron, nor Habit, nor Rule, nor Profession?

Con. Yes, good Man; see that you hold it fast. Ask your Godfathers what you promis'd in Baptism, what Profession you then made. Do you want a human Rule, who have made a Profession of the Gospel Rule? Or do you want a Man for a Patron, who have Jesus Christ for a Patron? Consider what you owe to your Wife, to your Children, to your Family, and you will find you have a greater Load upon you, than if you had professed the Rule of Francis.

Innk. Do you believe that any Inn-Keepers go to Heaven?

Con. Why not?

Innk. There are a great many Things said and done in this House, that are not according to the Gospel.

Con. What are they?

Innk. One fuddles, another talks bawdy, another brawls, and another slanders; and last of all, I can't tell whether they keep themselves honest or not.

Con. You must prevent these Things as much as you can; and if you cannot hinder them, however, do not for Profit's Sake encourage or draw on these Wickednesses.

Innk. Sometimes I don't deal very honestly as to my Wine.

Con. Wherein?

Innk. When I find my Guests grow a little too hot, I put more Water into the Wine.

Con. That's a smaller Fault than selling of Wine made up with unwholsome Ingredients.

Innk. But tell me truly, how many Days have you been in this Journey?

Con. Almost a Month.

Innk. Who takes Care of you all the While?

Con. Are not they taken Care enough of, that have a Wife, and Children, and Parents, and Kindred?

Innk. Oftentimes.

Con. You have but one Wife, we have an hundred; you have but one Father, we have an hundred; you have but one House, we have an hundred; you have but a few Children, we have an innumerable Company; you have but a few Kindred, we have an infinite Number.

Innk. How so?

Con. Because the Kindred of the Spirit extends more largely, than the Kindred of the Flesh: So Christ has promised, and we experience the Truth of what he has promised.

Innk. In Troth, you have been a good Companion for me; let me die if I don't like this Discourse better than to drink with our Parson. Do us the Honour to preach to the People to-morrow, and if ever you happen to come this Way again, know that here's a Lodging for you.

Con. But what if others should come?

Innk. They shall be welcome, if they be but such as you.

Con. I hope they will be better.

Innk. But among so many bad ones, how shall I know which are good?

Con. I'll tell you in a few Words, but in your Ear.

Innk. Tell me.


Innk. I'll remember it, and do it.

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