Extracted from Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation, collected by Richard Hakluyt edited by Edmund Goldsmid. Volume VI.
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This work was not included in the 1598–1600 edition of Hakluyt’s Voyages. It, however, formed part of the supplement issued in 1812.
printed at london:
by ihon kingstone, and henry sutton.
THE ERLE OF ARUNDEL,
KNIGHT OF THE ORDRE,
LORDE STEWARDE OF THE QUIENES MAIESTIES MOST HONOURABLE HOUSEHOLDE
Aftre what time the barrein traueiles of longe seruice, had driuen me to thinke libertie the best rewarde of my simple life, right honorable Erle and that I had determined to leaue wrastlyng with fortune, and to giue my self wholie to liue vpon my studie, and the labours of my hand: I thought it moste fitting with the dutie that I owe to God and manne, to bestowe my time (if I could) as well to the profite of other, as of myself. Not coueting to make of my floudde, a nother mannes ebbe (the Cancre of all commune wealthes) but rather to sette other a flote, where I my self strake on ground. Tourning me therefore, to the searche of wisedome and vertue, for whose sake either we tosse, or oughte to tosse so many papers and tongues: although I founde aboute my self, verie litle of that Threasure, yet remembred I that a fewe yeres paste, at the instaunce of a good Citezein, (who might at those daies, by aucthoritie commaunde me) I had begonne to translate, a litle booke named in the Latine, Omnium gentium mores, gathered longe sence by one Iohannes Boemus, a manne as it appereth, of good iudgemente and diligence. But so corrupted in the Printing, that after I had wrasteled a space, with sondrie Printes, I rather determined to lose my labour of the quartre tanslacion, then to be shamed with the haulf. And throwing it a side, entended no further to wearie my self therwithall, at the leaste vntill I mighte finde a booke of a bettre impression. In searching whereof at this my retourne to my studie, although I found not at the full that, that I sought for: yet vndrestanding among the booke sellers (as one talke bringes in another) that men of good learning and eloquence, bothe in the Frenche and Italien tonge, had not thought skorne to bestowe their time aboute the translacion therof, and that the Emperours Maiestie that now is, vouched saulfe to receiue the presentacion therof, at the Frenche translatours hande, as well appereth in his booke: it kindled me againe, vpon regard of mine owne profite, and other mennes moe, to bring that to some good pointe, that earst I had begonne. For (thought I) seing the booke hath in it, much pleasant varietie of thinges, and yet more profite in the pitthe: if it faile to bee otherwise rewarded, yet shal it thankefully of the good be regarded. Wherefore setting vpon it a fresshe, where the booke is deuided acording to thaunciente diuision of the earth into thre partes, Affrique, Asie, and Europe: hauing brought to an ende the two firste partes, I found no persons in mine opinion so fitte as your honour, to present theim vnto. For seing the whole processe ronneth vpon gouernaunce and Lawes, for thadministracion of commune wealthes, in peace and in warre, of aunciente times tofore our greate graundfathers daies: to whom mighte I bettre presente it, then to a Lorde of verie nobilitie and wisedome, that hath bene highe Mareshalle in the field abrode, deputie of the locke and keie of this realme, and a counsailour at home, of thre worthie princes. Exercised so many waies in the waues of a fickle Commune wealthe: troubled sometime, but neuer disapoincted of honourable successe. To your good Lordeshippe then I yelde and committe, the firste fruictes of my libertie, the firste croppe of my labours, this first daie of the Newe yere: beseching the same in as good parte to receiue it, as I humblie offre it, and at your pleasure to vnfolde the Fardle, and considre the stuffe. Whiche euer the farder in, shall sieme I truste the more pleasaunte and fruictefulle. And to conclude, if I shall vndrestande, that your honour delighteth in this, it shal be a cause sufficiente, to make me go in hande with Europe, that yet remaineth vntouched. Almightie God giue vnto your Lordeshippe prosperous fortune, in sounde honour and healthe.
Your Lordshippes moste humblie at commaundemente,
I haue sought out at times, as laisure hath serued me, Good reader, the maners and facions the Lawes, Customes and Rites, of all suche peoples, as semed notable, and worthy to be put in remembrance, together with the situation and description of their habitations: which the father of Stories Herodotus the Greke, Diodorus, the Siciliane, Berosus Strabo, Solinus, Trogus Pompeius, Ptolomeus, Plinius, Cornelius the still, Dionysius the Africane, Pomponius Mela, Cæsar, Iosephus, and certein of the later writers, as Vincentius, and Aeneas Siluius (which aftreward made Pope, had to name Pius the seconde) Anthonie Sabellicus, Ihon Nauclerus, Ambrose Calepine, Nicholas Perotte, in his cornu copiæ, and many other famous writers eche one for their parte, as it were skatered, and by piece meale, set furthe to posteritie. Those I saie haue I sought out, gathered together, and acordyng to the ordre of the storie and tyme, digested into this litle packe. Not for the hongre of gaine, or the ticklyng desire of the peoples vaine brute, and vnskilfulle commendacion: but partly moued with the oportunitie of my laisure, and the wondrefull profits and pleasure, that I conceiued in this kinde of studie my self, and partly that other also delightyng in stories, might with litle labour, finde easely when thei would, the somme of thynges compiled in one Booke, that thei ware wonte with tediousnes to sieke in many. And I haue shocked theim vp together, as well those of aunciente tyme, as of later yeres, the lewde, as well as the vertuous indifferentlie, that vsing them as present examples, and paternes of life, thou maiest with all thine endeuour folowe the vertuous and godlie, and with asmuche warenes eschewe the vicious and vngodly. Yea, that thou maiest further, my (reader) learne to discerne, how men haue in these daies amended the rude simplicitie of the first worlde, from Adam to the floud and many yeres after, when men liued skateryng on the earthe, without knowlege of Money, or what coigne ment, or Merchauntes trade: no maner of exchaunge, but one good tourne for another. When no man claimed aught for his seueralle, but lande and water ware as commune to al, as Ayer and Skie. When thei gaped not for honour, ne hunted after richesse, but eche man contented with a litle, passed his daies in the wilde fielde, vnder the open heauen, the couerte of some shadowie Tree, or slendre houelle, with suche companion or companions as siemed them good, their diere babes and children aboute them. Sounde without carcke and in rest full quietnesse, eatyng the fruictes of the fielde, and the milke of the cattle, and drinking the waters of the christalline springes. First clad with the softe barcke of trees, or the faire broade leaues, and in processe with rawe felle and hide full vnworkemanly patched together. Not then enuironed with walles, ne pente vp with rampers, and diches of deapthe, but walking at free scope emong the wanderyng beastes of the fielde, and where the night came vpon theim, there takyng their lodgyng without feare of murtherer or thief. Mery at the fulle, as without knowledge of the euilles that aftre ensued as the worlde waxed elder, through diuers desires, and contrarie endeuours of menne. Who in processe for the insufficience of the fruictes of the earthe, (whiche she tho gaue vntilled) and for default of other thynges, ganne falle at disquiete and debate emong themselues, and to auoied the inuasion of beastes, and menne of straunge borders, (whom by themselues thei could not repelle) gathered into companies, with commune aide to withstande suche encursions and violence of wrong. And so ioyning in confederacie, planted themselues together in a plotte, assigned their boundes, framed vp cotages, one by anothers chieque, diked in themselues, chose officers and gouernours and deuised lawes, that thei also emong theimselues might liue in quiete. So beginning a rough paterne of tounes and of Cities, that aftre ware laboured to more curious finesse.
And now ware thei not contented, with the commodities of the fieldes and cattle alone, but by diuers inuencions of handecraftes and sciences, and by sondrie labours of this life, thei sought how to winne. Now gan thei tattempte the sease with many deuices, to transplante their progenie and ofspring into places, vnenhabited, and to enioye the commodities of eche others countrie, by mutuall traffique. Now came the Oxe to the yoke, the Horse to the draught, the Metalle to the stampe, the Apparel to handsomenes, the Speache to more finesse, the Behauiour of menne to a more calmenesse, the Fare more deintie, the Buildyng more gorgeous, thenhabitours ouer all became milder and wittier, shaking of (euen of their owne accorde) the bruteshe outrages and stearne dealinges, that shamefully mought be spoken of. Nowe refrained thei from sleayng one of a nother, from eatyng of ech others flesh, from rape and open defiling of mother, sister, and daughter indifferently, and fro many like abominacions to nature and honestie. Thei now marieng reason, with strength: and pollicie, with might: where the earthe was before forgrowen with bushes and wooddes, stuffed with many noisome beastes, drouned with meares, and with marshe, vnfitte to be enhabited, waast and vnhandsome in euery condition: by wittie diligence, and labour, ridde it from encombraunce, planed the roughes, digged vp trees by the rootes, dried away the superfluous waters, brought all into leauelle, banished barreinesse, and vncouered the face of the earth, that it might fully be sene, conuerted the champeine to tillage, the plaines to pasture, the valley to meadow, the hilles thei shadowed with wooddes and with Vines, Then thruste thei in cultre and share, and with wide woundes of the earthe, wan wine and corne plenteously of the grounde, that afore scarcely gaue them Akornes and Crabbes. Then enhabited thei more thicke, and spred themselues ouer all, and buylte euery where. Of Tounes, thei made cities, and of villages, Tounes, Castles vpon the rockes, and in the valleis made thei the temples of the goddes. The golden graueled springes, thei encurbed with Marblo, and with trees right pleasauntlie shadowed them aboute. From them they deriued into cities and Tounes, the pure freshe waters, a great distaunce of, by conduicte of pipes and troughes, and suche other conueyance. Where nature had hidden the waters, out of sighte, thei sancke welles of greate deapth, to supplie their lackes. Riuers, and maigne floudes, whiche afore with vnbrideled violence, oftymes ouerflowed the neighboured aboute, to the destruction of their cattle, their houses, and themselues: thei restrained with bancques, and kept them in a course. And to the ende thei might not onely be vadable, but passed also with drie foote, thei deuised meanes with piles of Timbre, and arches of stone, maulgre the rage of their violent streames, to grounde bridges vpon them. Yea, the rockes of the sea whiche for the daungier of the accesse, thoughte themselues exempte from the dinte of their hande, when thei perceiued by experience, thei ware noyous to sailers, with vnspeakeable labour did thei ouerthrowe and breake into gobettes. Hewed out hauens on euery strond, enlarged crieques, opened rodes, and digged out herborowes, where their shippes mighte ride saulfe fro the storme. Finally thei so laboured, beautified, and perfeighted the earthe, that at this daie compared with the former naturalle forgrowen wastenesse, it might well sieme not to be that, but rather the Paradise of pleasure, out of the whiche, the first paternes of mankinde (Adam and Eue) for the transgression of Goddes precept, ware driuen.
Men also inuented and founde many wittie sciences, and artes, many wondrefull workes whiche when by practice of lettres, thei had committed to bookes, and laied vp for posteritie, their successours so woundered at their wisedomes, and so reuerenced their loue and endeuours (whiche thei spied to be meant toward them, and the wealth of those that shuld folow of them) that thei thought them not blessed enough, with the estate of men mortalle, but so aduaunced their fame, and wondered at their worthinesse, that thei wan theim the honour and name of Goddes immortall.
Tho gan the Prince of the worlde, when men so gan to delight in thadournyng of the worlde, to sowe vpon the good siede, the pestilente Dernell, that as thei multiplied in nombre, so iniquitie might encrease, to disturbe and confounde this blessed state.
First, therefore when he had with all kinde of wickedness belimed the world, he put into their heades, a curious searche of the highest knowledge, and suche as depended vpon destenie of thynges. And so practised his pageauntes, by obscure and doubtfully attempted Responcions, and voices of spirites, that after he had fettred the worlde in the trauers of his toies, and launced into their hartes a blinde supersticion, and feare: he trained it whole to a wicked worship of many goddes and Goddesses, that when he ones had wiped cleane out of mynde the knowledge and honour of one God euerlastyng, he might practise vpon manne, some notable mischief. Then sette he vp pilgrimages to deuilles, foreshewers of thynges, that gaue aduerisemente and answere to demaundes in sondrie wise. In the Isle of Delphos one, in Euboea another, at Nasamone a thirde, and emong the Dodonians, the famous okes, whose bowes by the blastes of the winde resounded to the eare, a maner of aduertisemente of deuellishe delusion. To the whiche Idolles and Images of deuelles he stirred vp men to do the honour (Helas) due onely to God. As to Saturne in Italie, to Iupiter in Candie, to Iuno in Samos, to Bacchus in India, and at Thebes: to Isis, and Osiris in Egypte: in old Troie to Vesta: aboute Tritona in Aphrique, to Pallas, in Germanie and Fraunce to Mercurie, vnder the name of Theuthe: to Minerua at Athenes and Himetto, to Apollo in Delphos, Rhodes, Chio, Patara, Troade and Tymbra. To Diane in Delos and in Scythia, to Venus in Paphos, Ciprus, Gnydon, and Cithera. To Mars in Thracia, to Priapus in Lampsacho of Hellespontus, to Vulcane in Lypara and Lennos, and in diuers other places to sondrie other, whose remembraunce was then moste freshe in the memorie of their people, for the benefaictes and merueilous inuencions bestowed emong them.
Afterward, also when Iesus Christe the verie sonne of the almightie father, shewyng hymself in the fleshe of our mortalitie, was conuersaunte in the worlde, pointyng to the same, as with his fingre, the waie to immortalitie, and endelesse blessednesse, and bothe with woorde and example, exhorted and allured them to vprightnes of life, to the glorie of his father, sendyng his disciples and scolers into the vniuersall worlde, to condemne Superstition and all errour of wickednes, with the moste healthsome woorde: to plante true Religion, and geue newe preceptes, and directions of the life, and had now set the matier in suche forwardnesse and poincte, that the Gospell beyng generally of all nacions receiued, there lacked but continuaunce to perfeicte felicitie: The deuell eftesones retournyng to his naturall malice, desirous to repossesse that, that constrainedly he forsooke, betrappyng again the curious conceipte of man, some he reuersed into their former abuses and errours, and some with newe Heresies he so corrupted, snarled, and blynded, that it had bene muche bettre for them, neuer almoste to haue knowen the waie of truthe, then after their entraunce, so rashely and maliciously to haue forsaken it.
At this daie in Asia the lesse, the Armenianes, Arabians, Persians, Sirians, Assirians and Meades: in Aphrique, the Egipcians, Numidians, Libiens, and Moores. In Europe, the whole countrie of Grecia, Misia, Thracia, and all Turquie throwyng awaie Christe, are become the folowers and worshippers of Mahomet and his erronious doctrine. The people of Scithia, whom we now cal Tartares (a greate people and wide spread) parte of them worshippe the Idolle of their Emperour Kamme, parte the Sonne, the Moone, and other Starres, and part according to the Apostles doctrine, one onely God. The people of Inde, and Ethiope, vnder the gouernaunce of Presbiter Ihon perseauer in Christiane godlinesse, howbeit after a sort, muche different from ours.
The sincere and true faithe of Christ, wherewith in time it pleased God to illumine the worlde, remaineth in Germanie, Italy, Fraunce, Spaine, Englande, Scotland, Ireland, Denmarke, Liuon, Pruse, Pole, Hungarie, and the Isles of Rhodes, Sicilie, Corsica, Sardinia, with a fewe other. This bytter enemie of mankinde hauyng thus with his subtilties, inueiled our mindes, and disseuered the christian vnion, by diuersitie of maners and facions of belief, hath brought to passe thorough this damnable wyckednes of Sacrifices, and Rites, that whilest euery people (vndoubtedly with religious entent) endeuour theim selues to the worshippe of God, and echeone taketh vpon him to be the true and best worshipper of him, and whilest echone thinke theim selues to treade the streight pathe of euerlastyng blessednes, and contendeth with eigre mode and bitter dispute, that all other erre and be ledde farre a wrie: and whilest euery man strugglethe and striueth to spread and enlarge his owne secte, and to ouerthrowe others, thei doe so hate and enuie, so persecute and annoy echone an other, that at this daie a man cannot safely trauaill from one countrie to another: yea, thei that would aduenture saufely or vnsaufely, be almost euery where holden out. Wherof me thinkes I see it is like to come to passe, that whilest one people scant knoweth the name of another, (and yet almost neighbours) all that shall this daie be written or reported of theim, shalbe compted and refused as lyes. And yeat this maner of knowledge and experience, is of it self so pleasant, so profitable and so praise worthy, that sundrie (as it is well knowen) for the onely loue and desire thereof, leauing their natiue countrie, their father, their mother, their wiues and their children, yea, throwyng at their heles their sauftie and welfare, haue with greate troubles, vexations, and turmoilynges taken vpon theim for experience sake, to cutte through the wallowying seas, and many thousande miles, to estraunge theimselues fro their home, yea, and those men not in this age alone, but euen from the firste hatchyng of the worlde haue been reputed and founde of moste wisedome, authoritie, and good facion, sonest chosen with all mennes consent, bothe in peace and warre, to administre the commune wealth as maisters and counsaillours, Iudges and Capitaines. Suche ware thancient sages of Grece and of Italy, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Antisthenes, Aristippus, Zeno, and Pythagoras, who through their wisedomes and estimacion for trauailes wan them greate nombres of folowers, and brought furthe in ordre the sectes named Socratici, Academici, Peripateci, Cynici, Cyrenaici, Stoici, and Pythagorici, echone chosyng name to glorie in his maister. Suche ware the prudente lawemakers of famous memorie, Minois and Rhadamanthus emong the Cretenses, Orpheus emong the Thraciens, Draco and Solon emong the Athenienses, Licurgus emong the Lacedemonians, Moses emong the Iewes, and Zamolxis emong the Scythians, and many other in other stedes whiche dreamed not their knowledge in the benchehole at home, but learned of the men in the worlde moste wise, the Chaldeies, the Brachmanni, the Gymnosophites and the priestes of Egipte, with whom thei had for a space bene conuersant. Like glorie, by like trauaill happened to the worthies of the worlde, as to Iupiter of Crete (reported fiue times to haue surueied the whole worlde) and to his twoo sonnes Dionisius (otherwise called Bacchus) and Hercules the mightie. Likewise to Theseus and Iason, and the rest of that voiage. To the vnlucky sailer Vlisses, and to the banished Eneas, to Cyrus, Xerxes, and Alexander the Greate, to Hanniballe and Mithridate, kyng of Pontus, reported able to speake fiftie sondrie languages, to Antiochus, the greate and innumerable Princes of Roome, bothe of the Scipioes, Marii, and Lentuli. To Pompeius the greate, to Iulius Cesar, Octauian, and Augustus, to the Constantines, Charles, Conrades, Henrickes, and Frederickes. Whiche all by their exploictes vpon straunge nacions, haue gotten their immortall and euerlastyng renoume. Wherefore, seyng there is in the knowledge of peoples, and of their maners and facions, so greate pleasure and profite, and euery man cannot, yea, fewe men will, go traueile the countries themselues: me thinkes gentill reader, thou oughtest with muche thanke to receyue at my hande these bookes of the maners and facions of peoples most notable and famous, togyther with the places whiche thei enhabite: And with no lesse cherefulnes to embrase theim, then if beyng ledde on my hande from countrey to countrey, I should poynct the at eye, how euery people liueth, and where they haue dwelte, and at this daye doe. Let it not moue the, let it not withdrawe the, if any cankered reprehendour of other mens doynges shall saie vnto the: It is a thyng hath bene written of, many yeares agone, and that by a thousand sondry menne, and yet he but borowyng their woordes, bryngeth it foorthe for a mayden booke, and naimeth it his owne. For if thou well considre my trade, thou shalt fynd, that I haue not only brought thee other mennes olde store, but opened thee also the treasury of myne owne witte and bokes, not euery where to be found, and like a liberall feaster haue set before thee much of myne owne, and many thynges newe. Farewell and thankefully take that, that with labour is brought thee.
When God had in V. daies made perfecte the heauens and the earth, and the furniture of bothe: whiche the Latines for the goodlinesse and beautie thereof, call Mundus, and we (I knowe not for what reason) haue named the worlde: the sixth daie, to the entent there mighte be one to enioye, and be Lorde ooer all, he made the moste notable creature Man. One that of all earthly creatures alone, is endowed with a mynde, and spirit from aboue. And he gaue him to name, Adam; accordyng to the colour of the molde he was made of. Then drawing out of his side the woman, whilest he slept, to thende he should not be alone, knitte her vnto hym, as an vnseparable compaignion, and therwith placed them in the moste pleasaunt plot of the earth, fostered to flourishe with the moisture of floudes on euery parte. The place for the fresshe grienesse and merie shewe, the Greques name Paradisos. There lyued they a whyle a moste blessed life without bleamishe of wo, the earth of the own accorde bringing forth all thing. But when they ones had transgressed the precepte, they ware banysshed that enhabitaunce of pleasure and driuen to shift the world. And fro thenceforth the graciousnes of the earth was also abated, and the francke fertilitie therof so withdrawen, that labour and swette, now wan1 lesse a great deale, then ydle lokyng on before tyme had done. Shortly crepte in sickenes, and diseases, and the broyling heate and the nipping cold began to assaile their bodyes. Their first sonne was Cayin, and the seconde Abell, and then many other. And as the world grewe into yeares, and the earth began to waxe thicke peopled, loke as the nombre did encreace, so vices grew on, and their lyuing decaied euer into woors. For giltelesse dealyng, wrong came in place, for deuoutnesse, contempte of the Goddes, and so farre outraged their wickednes, that God skarcely fyndyng one iuste Noha on the earth (whom he saued, with his housholde, to repayre the losse of mankind and replenysshe the worlde) sente a floude vniuersall, which couering all vnder water, killed all fleshe that bare lyfe vppon earth, excepte a fewe beastes, birdes, and wormes that ware preserued in the misticall arke. In the ende of fiue Monethes aftre the floude began, the Arque touched on the mounteines of Armenia. And within foure Monethes aftre, Noas and all his beyng restored to the earth, with Goddes furtheraunce in shorte space repeopled the worlde. And to thende the same myghte euery wheare again be enhabited, he dispersed his yssue and kyndredes into sondrie coastes. After Berosus opynion he sent Cham otherwyse, named Cameses and Chamesenuus with his ofspring, into Egipte. Into Lybia and Cirene, Triton. And into the whole residewe of Affrike the ancient Iapetus called Attalus Priscus, Ganges he sent into Easte Asia with certeine of the sonnes of Comerus Gallus. And into Arabia the fertile, one Sabus, sirnamed Thurifer. Ouer Arabia the Waste he made Arabus gouernour, and Petreius ouer Petrea. He gaue vnto Canaan, all that lyeth from Damasco to the outemost bordre of Palestine. In Europe he made Tuisco king of Sarmatia, from the floude of Tanais vnto the Rhene. And there were ioyned vnto him all the sonnes of Istrus, and Mesa, with their brethren, fro the mounteyne of Adula to Mesemberia pontica. Archadius and Emathius gouerned the Tirianes, Comerus Gallus, had Italie and Fraunce, Samothes, Briteigne and Normandie, and Inbal, Spayne. That spiedie and vnripe puttyng forthe of the children from their progenitours, before they had throughly learned and enured them selues with their facions and maners, was the cause of all the diuersitie that after ensued. For Cham, by the reason of his naughty demeanour towarde his father, beyng constrayned to departe with his wyfe and hys chyldren, planted him selfe in that parte of Arabia, that after was called by his name. And lefte no trade of religion to his posteritie, because he none had learned of his father. Whereof it came to passe, that when in processe of tyme they ware encreased to to many for that londe: beyng sent out as it ware, swarme aftre swarme into other habitations and skatered at length into sondrie partes of the worlde (for this banysshed progeny grewe aboue measure) some fel into errours wherout thei could neuer vnsnarle2 themselues. The tongue gan to altre and the knowledge of the true God and all godlie worsshippe vanished out of mind. Inso muche that some liued so wildely (as aftre thou shalt here) that it ware harde to discerne a difference betwixte them and the beastes of the felde. Thei that flieted into Egipt, wonderyng at the beautie and course of the Sonne, and the Moone, as though there had been in them a power diuine, began to worship them as Goddes: callyng the lesse, Isis and the bigger Osiris. To Iupiter also thei Sacrificed, and did honour as to the principall of life. To Vulcan for fire, to Pallas, as Lady of the skie, to Ceres as gouerneresse of the arth, and to sondry other for other sondry considerations. Neyther staied that darkenesse of iniquitie in Egipte alone, but where so euer the progeny of Cham stepte in from the begynnyng, there fell true godlines, all oute of minde and abondage to the deuell entred his place. And there neuer was countrie, mother of moe swarmes of people, then that part of Arabia, that he, and his, chase to be theirs. So greate a mischief did the vntymely banishemente of one manne, bring to the whole. Contrarily the progenie of Iapheth, and Sem, brought vp to full yeres vndre their elders, and rightly enstructed: contentyng them selues with a litle circuite, straied not so wide as this brother had doen. Whereby it chaunced that the zeale of the truthe, (I meane of good liuyng and true worshippe of one onely God) remained as hidden in one onely people, vntill the tyme of Messias.
1 Wan and won were used indifferently. Thus in Drayton’s Polyolbion, xi., p. 864 we find —
“These with the Saxons went, and fortunately wan,
Whose Captain Hengist first a Kingdom here began.”
And in the same page:
“As mighty Hengist here, by force of arms had done,
So Ella coming in, soon from the Romans won
The counties neighb’ring Kent.”
2 To snarle, to entangle; hence, to unsnarle — to disentangle. “And from her head ofte rente her snarled heare.” Spencer, Faerie Queene, iii., xii., 17. “You snarle yourself into so many and heynouse absurdities, as you shall never be able to wynde yourself oute.”— Cranmer’s Answer to Bp. Gardiner, p. 168. “Supposed to be formed from snare.” [Nares.]
But the aunciente Philosophers, whiche without knowledge of God, and his truthe, many yeres ago, wrate vpon the natures of thinges, and thistories of times had another opinion of the originall of man. For certain of them, belieued the worlde euer to haue been, and that euer it should be, and man together with it to haue had no beginnyng. Certaine did holde that it had a beginnyng, and an ende it should haue, and a time to haue been, when man was not. For saie thei, the begynner of thynges visible, wrapped vp bothe heauen and earth at one instant, togither in one paterne, and so a distinction growing on betwixte these meynte bodies, the worlde to haue begon in suche ordre as we see. The aire by nature to be continually mouyng, and the moste firie parte of thesame, for the lightenesse thereof, moste highe to haue climbed. So that sonne and Moone, and the planetes all, participatyng of the nature of that lighter substaunce: moue so muche the faster, in how muche thei are of the more subtile parte. But that whiche was mixed with waterie moisture, to haue rested in the place, for the heauinesse thereof, and of the watery partes, the sea to haue comen: and the matier more compacte to haue passed into a clamminesse firste, and so into earth. This earth then brought by the heate of the sonne into a more fastenesse. And after by the same power puffed and swollen in the vppermoste parte, there gathered manye humours in sondry places, which drawing to ripenesse enclosed them selues in slymes and in filmes, as in the maresses of Egipt, and other stondynge waters we often se happen. And seynge the heate of thaier sokynly warmeth the cold ground and heate meint3 with moisture is apt to engendre: it came to passe by the gentle moisture of the night aire, and the comforting heate of the daie sonne, that those humours so riped, drawyng vp to the rinde of thearth, as though their tyme of childbirthe ware come, brake out of their filmes, and deliuered vpon the earth all maner of liuing thinges. Emong whiche those that had in them moste heate, became foules into the aire: those that ware of nature more earthie, became wormes and beastes of sondrie kindes: and where water surmounted, thei drewe to the elemente of their kinde, and had to name fishes. But afterwarde the earth beyng more parched by the heate of the Sonne, and the drouthe of the windes, ceased to bring furthe any mo greate beastes: and those that ware already brought furthe, (saie thei) mainteined, and encreased by mutualle engendrure, the varietie, and nombre. And they are of opinion that in the same wise, men ware engendred in the beginning. And as nature putte them forth emong other beastes, so liued they at the first an vnknowen lyfe wyldely emong them, vpon the fruictes, and the herbes of the fieldes. But the beastes aftre a while waxing noysome vnto them, they ware forced in commune for eche others sauftie to drawe into companies to resiste their anoyaunce, one helping another, and to sieke places to make their abiding in. And where at the firste their speache was confuse, by litle and litle they sayed it drewe to a distinctenesse, and perfeigthe difference: in sorte that they ware able to gyue name to all thinges. But for that they ware diuersely sparckled in diuers partes of the worlde, they holde also that their speache was as diuers and different. And herof to haue aftreward risen the diuersitie of lettres. And as they firste assembled into bandes, so euery bande to haue broughte forthe his nation. But these men at the firste voide of all helpe and experience of liuyng, ware bittrely pinched with hongre and colde, before thei could learne to reserue the superfluous plenty of the Somer, to supply the lacke of Winters barreinesse, whose bitter blastes, and hongrie pinynges, consumed many of them. Whiche thing when by experience dere bought, thei had learned: thei soughte bothe for Caues to defende them fro colde, and began to hourde fruictes. Then happe found out fire, and reason gaue rule of profite, and disprofite, and necessitie toke in hand to sette witte to schoole. Who gatheryng knowledge, and perceiuyng hymself to haue a helpe of his sences, more skilful then he thought, set hande a woorke, and practised connyng, to supplie all defaultes, whiche tongue and lettres did enlarge and distribute abrode.
Thei that had this opinion of the originall of manne, and ascribed not the same to the prouidence of God, affirmed the Etopiens to haue bene the firste of all menne. For thei coniectured that the ground of that countrie lyng nierest the heates of the Sonne must needes first of all other waxe warme. And the earth at that tyme beyng but clammie and softe, through the attemperaunce of that moysture and heate, man there first to haue bene fourmed, and there to haue gladlier enhabited (as natiue and naturall vnto him) then in any other place, when all places ware as yet straunge, and vnknowen, whiche aftre men soughte. Beginnyng therfore at them, after I haue shewed how the worlde is deuided into thre partes (as also this treatise of myne) and haue spoken a litle of Aphrique, I wyll shewe the situacion of Aethiope, and the maners of that people, and so forthe of al other regions and peoples, with suche diligence as we can.
3 Mingled. — A word of Chaucer’s time. “And in one vessel both together meint.” Fletcher’s Purple Island, iv., st. 21.
Those that haue bene before our daies, (as Orosius writeth) are of opinion, that the circuite of the earth, bordered about with the Occean Sea: disroundyng hym self, shooteth out thre corner wise, and is also deuided into thre seuerall partes, Afrike, Asie, and Europe. Afrike is parted from Asie with the floude of Nilus, whiche comyng fro the Southe, ronneth through Ethiope into Egipte, where gently sheadyng hymself ouer his bancques, he leaueth in the countrie a marueilous fertilitie, and passeth into the middle earth sea, with seuen armes. From Europe it is separate with the middle earth sea, whiche beginnyng fro the Occean aforesaied: at the Islande of Gades, and the pileurs of Hercules, passeth not tenne miles ouer. But further entryng in, semeth to haue shooued of the maigne lande on bothe sides, and so to haue won a more largenesse. Asie is deuided from Europe, with Tanais the floude, whiche comyng fro the North, ronneth into the marshe of Meotis almoste midwaie, and there sincking himself, leaueth the marshe and Pontus Euxinus, for the rest of the bounde. And to retourne to Afrike again, the same hauyng Nilus as I saied on the Easte, and on all other partes, bounded with the sea, is shorter then Europe, but broader towarde the Occean, where it riseth into mounteigne. And shoryng towarde the Weste, by litle and litle waxeth more streighte, and cometh at thende to a narowe poincte. Asmuche as is enhabited therof, is a plentuous soile, but the great parte of it lieth waste, voide of enhabitauntes, either to whote4 for menne to abide, or full of noisome and venemous vermine, and beastes, or elles so whelmed in sande and grauell, that there is nothing but mere barreinesse. The sea that lieth on the Northe parte, is called Libicum, that on the Southe Aethiopicum, and the other on the West Atlanticum.
At the first the whole was possest by fower sondrie peoples. Of the whiche, twaine (as Herodotus writeth) ware founde there, tyme out of minde, and the other twaine ware alienes and incommes. The two of continuance, ware the Poeni, and Ethiopes, whiche dwelte, the one at the Northe of the lande, the other at the South. The Alienes, the Phoenices, the Grekes, the old Ethiopians, and the Aegipcienes, if it be true that thei report of themselues. At the beginnyng thei were sterne, and vnruly, and bruteshely liued, with herbes and with fleshe of wilde beastes, without lawe or rule, or facion of life, roilyng and rowmyng vpon heade, heather and thether without place of abode, where night came vpon them, there laiyng their bodies to reste. Afterwarde (as thei saie) Hercules passyng the seas out of Spaine, into Libie (a countrie on the Northe shore of Afrike) and bringyng an ouerplus of people thence with hym, somewhat bettre facioned and manered then thei, trained them to muche more humanitie. And of the troughes5 thei came ouer in, made themselues cotages, and began to plante in plompes6 one by another. But of these thinges we shall speake here aftre more at large.
Afrike is not euery place a like enhabited. For toward the Southe it lieth for the moste part waste, and vnpeopled, for the broilyng heate of that quatre. But the part that lieth ouer against Europe, is verie well enhabited. The frutefulnesse of the soile is excedyng, and to muche merueillous: as in some places bringyng the siede with a hundred folde encrease. It is straunge to beleue, that is saied of the goodnesse of the soile of the Moores. The stocke of their vines to be more then two menne can fadome, and their clousters of Grapes to be a cubite long. The coronettes of their Pasnepes, and Gardein Thistles (whiche we calle Hortichokes) as also of their Fenelle, to be twelue Cubites compasse. Their haue Cannes like vnto those of India, whiche may contein in the compasse of the knot, or iointe, the measure of ij. bushelles. Ther be sene also Sparagi, of no lesse notable bigguenesse. Toward the mounte Atlas trees bee founde of a wondrefull heigth, smothe, and without knaggue or knotte, vp to the hard toppe, hauyng leaues like the Cypres, but of all other the moste noble Citrus, wherof the Romaines made great deintie. Affrike hath also many sondrie beastes, and Dragones that lye in awaite for the beastes, and when thei se time, so bewrappe and wreathe them aboute, that takyng fro theim the vse of their ioynctes, thei wearie them and kille theim. There are Elephantes, Lyons, Bugles, Pardales, Roes, and Apes, in some places beyonde nombre. There are also Chamelopardales and Rhizes, like vnto Bulles. Herodote writeth, that there be founde Asses with hornes, Hienas Porpentines, wilde Rambes, a beast engendered of the Hiene and the Woulfe named Thoas, Pantheres, Storckes, Oistruthes, and many kindes of serpentes, as Cerastes, and Aspides, against whom nature hath matched the Ichneumon (a verie little beast) as a mortall enemie.
Two countreies there ware of that name Ouerlanders, and Netherlanders. The one pertaynyng to Aphrique, the other to Asie. The one whiche at this daie is called Inde, hath on the east the redde sea, and the sea named Barbaricum, on the northe it toucheth vpon Egypte, and vpon that Libie that standeth on the vtter border of Afrike toward the sea. On the west it is bounded with the other Libie that standeth more into the mayne londe. The residue that runneth toward the south, ioyneth vpon the netherland Ethiope, whiche lyeth more southerly, and is muche greater. It is thought that these Ethiopes toke name of Ethiopus Vulcanes sonne, that (as Plinie saieth) was gouernour there. Or els of the Greke wordes aythoo and ops, whereof the former signifieth to broyle, or to bourne vp with heate, and the other, in the eye or sight. Whiche sheweth in effecte, that the countreie lyeng in the eye of the Sonne, it must nedes be of heate almost importable. As in diede it lyeth in the full course of the sonne, and is in continuall heate. Toward the weast it is hilly, in the middes grauell and sande, and on the easte waste and deserte. There be in it dyuers peoples of sondry phisonomy and shape, monstruous and of hugly shewe. They are thought (as I saied) to haue bene the fyrst of all men, and those whiche of all other maye truelyest be called an homeborne people. Neuer vnder the bondage of any: but euer a free nacion. The first wae of worshippyng God (say thei) was deuised and taught emonge theim: with the maners and ceremonies there to appertinent. They had two kyndes of letters, one, whiche ware knowen onely to their priestes for matters of Religion, whiche they called misticall, and another for the vse of the people hidden from none. Yeat ware not their Letters facioned to ioyne together in sillables like ours, but Ziphres, and shapes of men and of beastes, of heades, and of armes, and artificers tooles, which signified in sondrie wise echone accordyng to his propertie. As by the picture of an hauke swiftenes and spiede, by the shape of a crocodile [Transcriber’s note: ‘crocoiled’ in original] displeasure or misfortune, by the figure of an eye, good watche or regarde, and so forthe of other. Emong their priestes, loke whome they sawe startle aboute as haulfe wood,7 him did iudge of all othermooste holy, and making him their king, they fall downe and worship him, as thoughe there ware in him a Godhead, or as thoughe at the least he ware by goddes prouidence giuen them. This king for al that, must be gouerned by the lawe, and is bounde to all thinges after thorde of the contry. He his selfe maye neither punishe or guerdon any manne. But loke vpon whome he wyl haue execution done, he sendeth the minister appoincted for the purpose, to the person with a token of deathe: whiche when he hath shewed, the officier retourneth, and the persone what soeuer he be, incontinent fordoeth him self. So greatly ware they giuen to thee honour of their kynges, suche a feruencie had they towarde them, that if it fortuned the king through any mishap, to be maymed or hurte in any parte of his bodye, as many as ware towarde him, namely of householde, voluntarily woulde giue them selues the lyke hurt, thincking it an vnfitting [Transcriber’s note: original ‘unsitting’] thing the kynge to lacke an eye or the vse of a legge, and his frindes neither to halt, ne yet to lacke parte of their sight. Thei say it is the manier also, that when the king dieth, his friendes should wilfully dispatche theim selues and die with hym, for this compte they glorious and a testimony of very friendship. The moste part of them, for that they lye so vnder the Sonne, go naked: couering their priuities with shiepes tayles. But a feawe of them are clad with the rawe felles8 of beastes. Some make them brieches of the heares of their heades vp to the waeste. They are comonly brieders and grasiers in commune together. Their shepe be of very small body, and of a harde and roughe coate. Their dogges also are neuer a whitte bigger, but thei are fierce and hardie. They haue good store of gromel and barly, wherof they vse to make drincke. All other graine and fruictes thei lacke, excepte it be dates whiche also are verye skante. Some of them lyue with herbes and the tender rootes of cannes or Riedes. Other eate flesshe, milke, and chese. Meroe, was in time past the heade citie of the kyngdome, whiche stondeth in an Isle of the same name facioned like a shielde, stretching it self thre thousand furlong alongest by Nilus. Aboute that Islande do the cattle masters dwelle, and are muche giuen to hunting, and those that be occupied with tilthe of the grounde haue also mines of gold. Herodotus writeth that thethiopians named Macrobij, do more estieme latten then thei do golde whiche thei put to nothyng that thei compt of any price. In so muche that the Ambassadours of Cambises, when thei came thether, found the prisoners in the gaole fettred and tied with Chaines of golde. Some of theim sowe a kinde of graine called Sesamus, and other the delicate Lothom. Thei haue greate plenty of Hebenum, a woode muche like Guaiacum, and of Siliquastrum. Thei hunte Elephantes and kyll them to eate. There be Lions, Rhinocerotes, Basiliskes, Pardales, and Dragones, whiche I said enwrappe thelephauntes, and sucke them to death, for their bloude. There be found the precious stones called the Iacinthe, and the Prasne. There is also cinamome gathered. Thei occupie bowes of woode seasoned in the fire, of foure cubites long. Women be trayned also to the warres, and haue for the moste parte a ring of latton hanging throughe their lippe. Certeine of theim worshippe the Sonne at his vprijste, and curse him moste bitterly at his doune gate. Diuers of them throwe their dead into Riuers, other cofer them vp in earthen cofres, some enclose them in glasse, and kepe them in their houses a yeare, and in the meane season worship them deuoutly, and offre vnto them the first of all their encreace. In the naming of a newe king, they giue their voice chiefly to him that is moste goodly of stature, moste conning in brieding of cattle, and of strength and substance passing the reast. The lawe hath bene, that the priestes of Memphis shoulde haue the aucthoritie to sende the Kinge the token of deathe, and to set vp another in the place of the deade, whom they thoughte good. They haue an opinion that ther are two Goddes, one immortall, by whome all thinges haue their beginning and continuance vnder his gouernement, and another mortall, and he is vncerteine. Their king, and him that best deserueth of the city next vnto him, they honour as Goddes. This was the state of Ethiope from the beginning, and many yeares sence.
But at this daye as myne Authour Sabellicus saieth that he learned of those that are enhabitantes in that countrey: The King of Ethiope (whom we commonly calle Pretoianes or Presbiter Ihon) is a man of suche power, that he is reported to haue vndre him thre skore and two other kinges. If the heade Bysshoppess of the Realme desire to do, or to haue aughte done, al is referred vnto him. Of him be giuen al benefices, and spiritual promocions, which prerogatiue the Pope hath giuen, to the maiestie of kinges. Yet is he him selfe no priest, he hath any maner of ordres. There is of Archebisshoppes (that is to say of superiour and head bisshoppes) a great nombre, whiche haue euery one vndre them at the least twenty other. The Princes, Dukes, Earles, and head Bishoppes, and suche other of like dignitie, when they come abrode, haue a crosse, and a basine of golde filled ful of earthe caried before them: that thone 9 maye put them in remembraunce that earth into earth must again be resolued, and the other renewe the memory of Christes suffering. Their priestes to haue yssue, mary one wyfe, but she ones beyng dead, it is vnlawfull to mary another. The temples and churches ther, are muche larger, much richer, and more gorgeous then ours, for the moste part voulted from the floore to the toppe. They haue many ordres of deuout men, moche like to our ordres of Religious: as the ordre of S. Anthony, Dominique, Calaguritani, Augustines, and Machareanes, whiche are bound to no colour but weare some suche one as Tharchebysshoppe shall allowe. Next vnto the supreame and souereigne GOD, and Mary the virgin his mother, they haue moste in honour Thomas sirnamed Didimus. This King, of all other the worthiest, whome they call Gias (a name giuen him of his mightiness and power) is of the bloud of Dauid, continued from one generation to another (as they are perswaded) by so many yeres of succession. And he is not as the moste of the Ethiopians are, blacke, but white. Gamma the chiefe citie, and as we terme it the chambre of the king, stondeth not by building of masonrie, and carpentrie as ours, but strieted with tentes and pauilions placed in good ordre, of veluet and saten, embrauded with silkes and purples of many diuers sortes. By an auncient ordre of the realme, the king liueth euer in presence and sighte of his people, and neuer soiourneth within the walles aboue two daies. Either for that they iudge it an vncomely thing, and a token of delicate slouthfulnes, or elles for that some law doth forbid it. His army in the warres is ten hundred thousande men, fiue hundred Elephantes, and horses, and Cameles, a wonderfull nomber, and this is but a meane preparacion. Ther are througheout the whole nacion certeine houses and stockes, that are pencionaries at armes, whose issue is as it ware branded with the marcke of the crosse, the skinne beyng pretely slitte. Thei vse in the warres, Bowe, Pique, Habregeon, and helmette. Their highest dignitie is priesthode, the next, thordre of the Sages, whiche thei cal Balsamates, and Tamquates. They attribute moche also to the giltelesse and vprighte dealing man, whiche vertue they estieme as the firste staier to climbe to the dignitie of the sages. The nobilitie hath the thirde place of dignitie, and the pencionaries aforesaid, the fourthe. When the iudges haue giuen sentence of life, or of deathe, the sentence is brought to the headborough of the Citie (whom we call the Mayour) and they Licomegia: he supplieth the place of the King. Lawes written thei occupy none, but iudge accordyng to reason and conscience. If any man be conuict of adulterie he forfeicteth the fourtieth parte of his goodes, but thadulteresse is punished at home, accordyng to the discretion of the partie offended. The men giue dowrie to those whom thei mary withal, but not to those that thei purchase besides. Their womens attire is of Golde, (whereof that country hathe plentie) of pearle, and of Sarsenette. Bothe men and women are apparelled in long garmentes downe to the foote, slieued, and close rounde aboute of al maner of colours, sauing only blacke for that in that contry is proper for morning. They bewaile their dead xl. daies space. In bancquettes of honour, in the place of our fruicte (which the latine calleth the seconde boorde) they serue in rawe flesshe very finely minced and spiced, whervpon the gestes fiede very licouricely.10 They haue no maner of wollen webbe, but are eyther cladde in sarsenettes, or in linnen. One maner of speache serueth not througheout the whole contry, but sondry and diuerse, aswel in phrase as in naming of thinges. Thei haue twise in the yere haruest, and twise in the yere somer. These Ethiopians or Indianes excepted, al the reste of the people of Libia Westward, are worshippers of Mahomet, and liue aftre the same sorte in maner, that the Barbariens do in Egipte at this present, and are called Maures, or Moores, as I thincke of their outleapes and wilde rowming. For that people was no lesse noysome to Lybie in those cursed tymes (when so greate mutacion of thinges happened, when peoples ware so chaunged, suche alteration of seruice, and religion broughte in, and so many newe names giuen vnto contries) then the Sarasens ware.
Aegipte is a Countrie lying in Affrike, or as some hold opinion, borderyng thervpon, so named of Aegiptus, Danaus brother, where afore it was called Aeria. This Aegipte (as Plinie recordeth in his fiueth boke) toucheth on the East, vppon the redde Sea, and the land of Palestine; On the West fronteth vpon Cirene, and the residue of Afrike. On the South it stretcheth to Aethiope: And on the Northe is ended with the sea, to whom it giueth name. The notable Cities of that Countrie, were in tyme past, Thebes, Abydos, Alexandrie, Babilon, and Memphis, at this daie called Damiate, alias Chairas or Alkair, and the seate of the Soldan, a citie of notable largenesse. In Aegipt as Plato affirmeth, it was neuer sene rain. But Nilus suppliyng that defaulte, yerely about saincte Barnabies tide, with his ouerflowynges maketh the soile fertile. It is nombred of the moste parte of writers, emong the Islandes: For that Nilus so parteth hymself aboute it, that he facioneth it triangle wise.
The Aegiptians firste of all other, deuised the names of the twelue Goddes, builte vp Altares, and Images, erected Chappelles and Temples, and graued in stone the similitude of many sondrie beastes. All whiche their doynges, dooe manifestly make, that thei came of the Aethiopes, who (as Diodore the Sicilian saieth) ware the firste inuentours of all these. Their women in old tyme, had all the trade of occupiyng, and brokage11 abrode, and reuelled at the Tauerne, and kepte lustie chiere: And the men satte at home spinnyng, and woorkyng of Lace, and suche other thynges as women are wonte. The men bare their burdeins on the heade, the women on the shulder. In the easemente of vrine, the men rowked12 doune, the women stoode vprighte. The easemente of ordure thei vsed at home, but commonly feasted abrode in the stretes. No woman tooke ordres, either of God or Goddesse. Their maner of ordres, is not to make seuerally for euery Goddesse and God, a seuerall priest, but al at a shuffe, in generall for all. Emong the whiche, one is an heade, whose sonne enheriteth his roume by succession. The men children, euen of a custome of that people, did with good wil kepe their fathers and mothers, but the women children (yf they refused it) ware compelled. The moste part of men in solempne burialles, shaue their heades, and let theyr beardes growe, but Thegiptians shaued their beardes and let their heades grow. They wrought their doughe with their fiete, and their claye with their handes. As the Grecians do beleue, this people, and their ofspring, are they that vsed circumcision. Thei ordre their writyng from their right hande towarde their left, contrary to vs. It was the maner emong them, that the menne should weare two garmentes at ones, the women but one. As the Aethiopes had, so learned they of them, two maner of lettres; the one seuerall to the priestes thother vsed in commune. Their priestes, euery thirde daye shaued their bodies, that there might be none occasion of filthinesse when they shold ministre or sacrifie. Thei did were garmentes of linnen, euer cleane wasshed, and white: and shoes of a certeine kinde of russhes, named Papyrus, whiche aftre became stuffe, to geue name to our paper. They neither sette beane their selues, ne eate them where soeuer they grewe: ne the priest may not loke vpon a beane, for that it is iudged an vncleane puls. They are wasshed euery daye in colde water thrise, and euery nighte twise. The heades of their sacrifices (for that they vsed to curse them with many terrible woordes) did they not eate, but either the priestes solde them to such strangiers as had trade emonge them, or if there ware no suche ready in time, they threwe them in to Nilus.
All the Egiptians offer in sacrifice, neither cowe, ne cowe calfe, because they are hallowed to Isis their goddesse, but bulles and bulle calues, or oxen, and stieres. For their meate they vse, moche a kynde of pancake, made of rye meale. For lacke of grapes they vse wyne made of Barly. They liue also with fisshe, either dried in the Sonne and so eaten rawe, or elles kept in pikle. They fiede also vpon birdes, and foules, firste salted, and then eaten rawe. Quaile, and mallard, are not but for the richer sorte. At all solempne suppers, when a number is gathered, and the tables withdrawen, some one of the company carieth aboute in an open case, the image of death, caruen out of woode, or drawen with the pencille as niere to the vine as is possible, of a cubite, or two cubites long at the moste. Who shewyng it aboute to euery of the gestes, saieth, loke here: drinke and be mery, for aftre thy death, suche shall thou be. The yonger yf they miete their auncient, or bettre vpon the way, giue them lace, going somewhat aside: or yf the aunciente fortune to come in place where they are sitting, they arise out of their seate, wherein they agre with the Lacedemoniens. When they miete in the waye, they do reuerence to eche other, bowing their bodies, and letting fall their handes on their knees. They weare long garments of lynnen, hemmed about the skirtes beneth, which the call Casiliras: ouer the which they throwe on another white garment also. Wollen apparelle thei neither weare to the churche, ne bewry any man in.
Nowe for asmoche as they afore time that euer excelled in anye kinde of learning, or durste take vppon them, to prescribe lawe, and rule of life vnto to other, as Orpheus, Homeire, Museus, Melampode, Dedalus, Licurgus, Solon, Plato, Pithagoras, Samolxis, Eudoxus, Democritus, Inopides, and Moses the Hebrue, with manye other, whose names the Egiptians glorie to be cronicled with theim: trauelled first to the Egiptians, to learne emongest them bothe wisedome, and politique ordre (wherein at those daies they passed all other) me thinketh it pleasaunte and necessarie also, to stande somewhat vpon their maners, ceremonies and Lawes, that it may be knowen what they, and sondry more haue borowed of them, and translated vnto other. For (as Philip Beroalde writeth in his commentary vpon Apuleius booke, entituled the Golden Asse) the moste parte of the deuices that we vse in our Christian religion, ware borowed out of the maner of Thegiptians. As surpluis and rochet, and suche linnen garmentes: shauen crownes, tourninges at the altare, our masse solempnities, our organes, our knielinges, crouchinges, praiers, and other of that kinde. The kinges of Egipte (saieth Diodore the Sicilian in his seconde booke) liued not at rouers13 as other kinges doe, as thoughe me lusteth ware lawe, but bothe in their monie collections, and daily fare and apparell, folowed the bridle of the lawe. They had neither slaue that was homeborne, ne slaue that was forein bought, appointed to attende or awaite vpon them. But the sonnes of those that ware priestes of honour, bothe aboue thage of twenty yeres, and also singulerly learned. That the king hauing these attendant for the body both by daie and by night, restrained by the reuerence of the company about hym might commit nothing that was vicious, or dishonourable. For men of power are seldome euil, where they lacke ministres for their vnlawfull lustes. There ware appoincted houres, both of the daie and the night, in the whiche the kinge mighte lawfully doe, what the Lawe did permit. In the morning, assone as he was ready, it behoued him to peruse al lettres, supplicacions, and billes: that knowing what was to be done, he might giue aunswer in tyme: that all thinges might rightlie, and ordrely be done. These being dispatched, when he had washed his bodie emong the Pieres of the Realme, he put on some robe of estate, and Sacrificed to the goddes. The maner was, that the Primate, or head of the spiritualty (the beastes appoincted for the sacrifices being brought harde to the altare, and the Kyng standing by) should with a loude voyce, in the hearing of the people, wysshe to the king (that bare him selfe iustely towarde his subiectes) prosperous healthe, and good fortune in all. And should further particulerly recite the vertues of the king, his deuoutnes and reuerence towarde God, and clemency towarde men. Commende him as chaste, iuste, and vpright: of noble and great coinage, sothfaste, liberal, and one that well brideled al his desires. Punisshing thoffendour vnder his desertes, and rewarding the well doer aboue his merites. Making a processe of these, and such other like: in the ende with the rehersalle of the contrary vices, he cursed the wicked and euil. Then absoluing the King of his offences, he laied all the faulte vpon the ministres, and attendauntes, that should at any time moue the king to any thing vnright, or vnlawfull. These thinges beinge done, he preached vnto the King the blessednes of the life, led accordyng to the pleasure of the goddes, and exhorted him thervnto: as also to frame his maners and doinges vnto vertue, and not to giue eare to that, that leude men should counsaile him, but to followe those thynges that led vnto honour and vertue. In thende, whan the King had sacrificed a bulle, the priest declared certain preceptes and examples of excellente, and moste worthy men: written in their holy scripture. To thende that the Kynge admonisshed by the example of theim, might ordre his gouernaunce iustlye, and godly, and not geue hym selfe to couetous cloinyng,14 and hourdyng of tresure. He neither satte to iudge, ne toke his vocacion, ne walked abrode, ne washed at home, ne laye with his Quiene, ne finally did any maner of thing, but vpon the prescripte of the lawe.
Their fare was but simple, nothing but veale, and goose, and their wine by measure appoincted. So that thone should nether ouerlade the bealy, ne the other the heade. To conclude, their whole life so bounde vpon temperaunce, that it might be thoughte raither to haue bene prescribed them by a discrete Phisicen to preserue helthe, then by a politique Lawyer. It siemeth wondrefull that the Egiptians mighte not rule their owne priuate life, but by the Lawes. But it semeth more wonderfull that their King had no liberty of him selfe, either to sitte in iudgement, to make collections of money, or topunishe any man, vpon wilfulnes, stoute stomacke, angre, displeasure, or anye vniuste cause: But to be holden vnder lawe as a commune subiecte, and yet not to be agreued therwith, but to thincke them selues moste blessed in obeyeng and folowyng the lawe, and other in folowing their lustes most vnhappy, as being led by them into many daungiers, and damages. For suche oftentimes, euen when they know them selues to do euill, either ouercome with malice, and hatred, or some other mischiefe of the minde, are not able to witholde theim selues from the euille. But they which by wisedome and discretion, gouerne their liues, offende in fewe thinges. The kinges vsing suche an equitie, and vprightnes towarde their subdites, are so tendred againe of them, that not onely the priestes, but all the Egiptians in generall, haue more care for the health and the welfare of the King, then for their wiues, their children, or any other princes.
He that to his death continueth in this goodnesse, him being dead, do they in general lamente. They teare their clothes, they shut vp the churche dores, they haunte no place of wonte commune concourse, they omytte all solempne holy daies: and girding them selues vnder the pappes with brode Ribbond of Sarsenet, two or thre hundred on a company, men and women together, renewe euery daye twise, thre skore and xii. daies together, the buriall bewailing, casting dirte on their heades, and singing in rithme the vertue of the Kinge. They absteine from al flesshe of beastes, all meates that touche fire, all wine and all preparation of seruice at the table. They bathe not, thei smel of no swietes, they go to no beddes, they pleasure not in women: but as folkes that had buried their beste beloued childe, all that continuance of time they lamente. During these seuenty and two daies (hauyng prepared all thinges necessarie for the funerall pompe): the laste daye of all, the bodie beyng enbaulmed and cofred, is sette before the entrie of the Toombe. Thereaftre the custome, one redeth an abridgemente of all the thinges done by the king in his life. And if there be any man disposed to accuse the deade, libertie is giuen him. The priestes are present, and euer giue praise to his well doings, as they be recited. There stondeth also rounde about the Toombe a multitude of the communes, which with their voices allowe asmuche as is trew, and crie out vpon that, that is false, with vehement gainsaienges. Wherby it hath happened, that sondry kynges by the repugnynges of the people haue lien vntoombed: and haue lacked the honoure of bewrialle, that the good are wonte to haue. That feare, hath driuen the kynges of Aegipte, to liue iustly, and vprightly, lesse the people aftre their deathes, might shewe them suche dishonour, and beare them perpetuall hatred. This was the maner specially, of the aunciente kynges there.
The whole realme of Egipte was diuided into Shieres: and to euery Shiere was appoincted a Presidente, whiche had the gouernaunce of the whole Shiere. The reuenewes of the realme ware diuided into iii. partes: whereof the companie of the priestes had the first parte, which ware in greate estimacion emong them, both for the administration of Goddes Seruice, and also for the good learnyng, wherin thei brought vp many. And this porcion was giuen theim, partely for the administracion of the Sacrifices, and partely for the vse and commoditie of their priuate life. For thei neither thincke it mete, that any parte of the honour of the Goddes should bee omitted, or that thei, whiche are Ministres of the commune counsaill and profecte, should be destitute of necessary commodities of the life. For these menne are alwaie in matters of weighte, called vpon by the nobles, for their wisedome and counsaille: And to shewe (as thei can by their connyng in the Planettes, and Starres, and by the maner of their Sacrifices) the happe of thinges to come. Thei also declare vnto them, the stories of men of olde tyme, regested in their holy Scripture, to the ende that accordyng to them the kynges maie learne what shall profighte, or disprofighte. For the maner is not emong them, as it is emong the Grecians, that one manne, or one woman, shoulde attende vpon the sacrifices and Ceremonies alone: but thei are many at ones aboute the honour of their Goddes, and teache the same ordre to their children. This sorte of menne is priuileged, and exempte from all maner of charges, and hath next vnto the kyng, the second place of dignitie and honour.
The second portion cometh to the king to maintein his owne state, and the charges of the warres: and to shewe liberalitie to men of prowesse according to their worthinesse. So that the Communes are neither burdoned with taxes nor tributes.
The thirde parte do the pencionaries of the warres receiue, and suche other as vpon occasions are moustered to the warres: that vpon the regard of the stipende, thei maie haue the better good wille and courage, to hasarde their bodies in battaile. Their communaltie is deuided into thre sortes of people. Husbande men, Brieders of cattle, and men of occupacion. The Husband-men buyeng for a litle money a piece of grounde of the Priestes, the king, or the warriour: al the daies of their life, euen from their childhode, continually applie that care. Whereby it cometh to passe, that bothe for the skoolyng that thei haue therin at their fathers handes, and the continuall practisyng fro their youthe, that thei passe all other in Husbandrie.
The Brieders, aftre like maner, learnyng the trade of their fathers, occupie their whole life therabout. We see also that al maner of Sciences haue bene much bettred, yea, brought to the toppe of perfection, emong the Egiptians. For the craftes men there, not medlyng with any commune matiers that mighte hindre theim, emploie them selues onely to suche sciences as the lawe doeth permit them, or their father hath taught them. So that thei neither disdaine to be taughte, nor the hatred of eche other, ne any thing elles withdraweth them from their crafte.
Their Iudgementes and Sentences of lawe, are not there at giuen aduenture, but vpon reason: for thei surely thought that all thinges well done, muste niedes be profitable to mannes life. To punishe the offendours, and to helpe the oppressed, thoughte thei the best waie to auoide mischiefes. But to buye of the punishmente for money or fauour, that thought thei to be the very confusion of the commune welfare. Wherefore thei chase out of the chief cities (as Heliopole, Memphis, and Thebes) the worthiest men, to be as Lordes chief Iustice, or Presidentes of Iudgementes, so that their Iustice benche did sieme to giue place, neither to the Areopagites of the Athenienses, ne yet to the Senate of the Lacedemonians that many a daie after theim ware instituted. Aftre what tyme these chief Iustices ware assembled (thirtie in nombre) thei chase out one that was Chauncellour of the whole: and when he failed, the citie appoincted another in his place. All these had their liuynges of the kyng: but the Chauncellour more honorably then the rest. He bare alwaie about his necke a tablette, hangyng on a chaine of golde, and sette full of sundrie precious stones, whiche thei called Veritie and Truthe. The courte beyng set and begunne, and the tablet of Truthe by the Chauncellour laied furthe, and theight bookes of their lawes (for so many had thei) brought furth into the middes emong them: it was the maner for the plaintife to putte into writyng the whole circumstance of his case, and the maner of the wrong doone vnto him, or how muche he estemed himself to be endamaged thereby. And a time was giuen to the defendant to write answere again to euery poinct, and either to deny that he did it, or elles to alledge that he rightfully did it, or elles to abate the estimate of the damage or wrong. Then had thei another daie appointed, to saie finally for them selues. At the whiche daie when the parties on bothe sides ware herd, and the iudges had conferred their opinions, the Chauncellour of the Iudges gaue sentence by pointyng with the tablet of Veritie, toward the parte that semed to be true. This was the maner of their iudgementes.
And forasmuche as we are fallen into mencion of their iudgementes, it shall not be vnfyttyng with myne enterprise, to write also the aunciente Lawes of the Egiptians, that it maie be knowen how muche they passe, bothe in ordre of thynges, and profite.
Fyrst to be periured was headyng: for they thought it a double offence. One in regarde of conscience not kept toward God, and an other in gyuynge occasion to destroy credite among men, whiche is the chiefest bonde of their felowship. If any wayfarying man shuld espy a man sette vppon with thieues, or otherwyse to be wronged, and dyd not to his power succour and ayde hym, he was gyltie of death. If he ware not able to succour and to reskewe hym, then was he bounde to vtter the thieues, and to prosecute the matter to enditement. And he that so dyd not, was punyshed with a certayne nombre of stripes, and was kept thre days without meate. He that shuld accuse any man wrongfully, if he fortuned afterward to be broughte into iudgement, he suffered the punishement ordeyned for false accusers. All the Egyptians ware compelled to brynge euery man their names to the chiefe Iustices, and the facultie or science wherby they liued. In the which behalfe if any man lyed, or lyued with vnlaufull meanes, he felle into penalitie of death. If any man willyngly had slaine any man free or bond, the lawes condemned hym to die, not regardynge the state of the man, but the malicious pourpose of the diede. Wherby they made men afrayd to doe mischief, and death beynge executed for the death of a bondman, the free myght goe in more sauftie. For the fathers that slewe their chyldren, there was no punyshement of death appoynted, but an iniunction that they shoulde stande thre daies and thre nyghtes togither at the graue of the deade, accompanied with a common warde of the people to see the thyng done. Neyther dyd it sieme them iuste, that he that gaue life to the childe, should lose his life for the childes death, but rather be put to continual sorowe, and to be pyned with the repentance of the diede, that other myght ther by the withdrawen from the like wyckednes. But for the chyld that kylled either father or mother, they deuised this kynd of synguler torment. They thruste hym through with riedes sharpned for the nones, in euery ioynt all ouer his body, and caused hym quicke to be throwen vpon a heape of Thornes, and so to bee burned. Iudgyng that there could not be a greater wickednes emong men, then to take awaie the life, from one that had giuen life vnto hym. If any woman with child ware condempned to dye, thei abode the tyme of her deliueraunce nowithstandyng: for that thei iudged it farre from all equitie, that the gilteles should dye together with the giltie. Or that ii. should be punished, where but one had offended. Who so had in battaille or warre, withdrawen hymself from his bande, forsaken his place in the arraie, or not obeied his capitaigne: was not condempned to dye, but suffred for his punishemente a notable reproche, of all punishementes the woorste, and more greuous then death. Who so had disclosed any secret to the ennemie, the Lawe commaunded his tongue to be cutte out of his heade. And who so clipped the coigne or countrefacted it, or chaunged the stampe or diminisshed the weighte: or in lettres and writinges, shoulde adde any thing, by entrelinyng, or otherwise: or should guelde out any thyng, or bryng a forged euidence, Obligacion or Bille, bothe his handes ware cutte of. That suche parte of the bodie as had offended, mighte for euer beare the punishemente therof: and the residue takyng warnyng by his ensample, might shonne the like.
There ware also sharpe punishementes constitute, in offences concernyng women. For he that had defloured a free woman, had his membres cutte of, because in one offence, he had committed thre no small wickednesses. That is to saie, wrong, made the woman an whore, and broughte in a doubte the laufulnes of her issue. But thei that ware taken in adulterie, bothe partes byeng agreed, the man was whipped with a thousand stripes by tale: and the woman had her nose cut of, wherwith beside the shame she had, the whole beautie of her face was disgraced, and disfigured.
The Lawes that apperteigned to the trade and occupieng of men, one with another: ware made (as thei saie) by one Bocchorides. It is commaunded in them, that if money haue bene lent any manne without writyng, vppon credite of his woorde: if the borrower deny it, he should be put to his othe, to the whiche the creditour muste stande. For thei so muche estiemed an othe, that thei thoughte no man so wicked, as wilfully to abuse it. And again, because he that was noted to sweare very often, lost vtterly his credite, and name: many menne affirme, that for the regard of their honesties, it happened very seldome, that any man came to his othe. Their Lawe maker also, iudging that vertue was the engendrer of credite, thought it good by good ordres to accustome men to good liuyng and honestie, vpon feare to sieme vnworthie of all reputacion. He thought it also to be against conscience, that he that without an othe had borowed, should not nowe for his own, be beleued with an othe. The forfect for non paiment of the lone, mought not bee aboue the double of the somme that was borowed. And paiement was made onely of the goodes of the borower, the body was not arrestable. For the Lawemaker thought it conueniente, that onely the gooddes should bee subdite to the debte, and the bodies (whose seruice was required bothe in peace and in warre) subiecte to the citie. It was not thoughte to bee Iustice, that the manne of warre, whiche hasardeth his bodie for the sauftie of his countrie, should for an enterest of lone, bee throwen into prisone. The whiche lawe, Solon siemeth to haue translated to the Athenienses, vndre the name of the lawe Sisarea, decreyng that the body of no citezein, should for any maner of enterest be emprisoned. 15
Thegiptians also for thieues, had this lawe alone, and no people els. The lawe commaunded that as many as would steale, should entre their names with the chief Prieste: and what so euer was stollen, incontinente to cary the same vnto hym. Likewise, he that was robbed was bounde to entre with the saied Chiefe Priest, the daie, time and houre, when he was robbed. By this meanes the thefte being easely founde out, he that was robbed, loste the fourths parte and receiued the residue, the whiche fourthe was giuen to the thiefe. For the Lawe maker (seeing it was impossible vtterly to be withoute thieues) thought it moche bettre by this meanes that men bare the losse of a piece then to be spoiled of the whole.
The ordre of Mariage emong the Egiptians is not vniforme, for the priest might marry but one onely wife. All other haue as many as they wille, acordyng to their substaunce. Ther is no child emong them, though it be borne of a bought woman slaue, that is compted illegitimate. For they onely compte the father to be the authour of his kynde, and the mother onely but to geue place and nourishement to the childe. When their children be borne they bring them vp with so lytle coste, as a man would skantly belieue. They fiede them with the rootes of mererushes, and other rootes, rosted in the embries, and with marshe Caubois, and colewortes which partly they seathe, and partly they roste, and parte giue them rawe. They go for the moste parte withoute hosen or shoes, all naked, the contry is so temperate. All the coste that the Parentes bestowe on their children til they be of age to shift for themselues, surmounteth not the somme of a noble.16
The priestes bring vp the children, both in the doctrine of their holye scriptures, and also in the other kindes of learning necessary for the commune life, and chiefly in Geometry and Arithmetique. As for the roughe exercises of wrasteling, ronning, daunsing, playeng at weapons, throwyng the barre or suche like, they train not their youth in, supposyng that the daily exercise of suche, shoulde be to roughe, and daungerous for them, and that they should be an empeiryng of strength. Musique they doe not onely compte vnprofitable, but also hurteful: as making mens courages altogether womanlyke. When they are sicke, they heale themselues, eyther with fasting or vomiting: and that either euery eche other daye, or euery third daye, or fourthe. For they are of opinion that all diseases growe of superfluite of meate, and that kinde of cure therfore to be beste, that riddeth the grounde of the griefe. Men goyng to the warres, or traueillyng the countrie, are healed of free cost. For the Phisicens and Chirurgiens, haue a stipende allowed them of ordenary at the charge of the communes.
In curing, they are bounde to folowe the preceptes of the auncient and allowed writers, regestred in their holy scripture. Yf a man folowing the prescripte of the scriptures can not so heale the sicke, he is not blamed for that: But yf he fortune to heale him by any other meanes then is in the scripture appoincted, he dieth for it. For the lawe giuer thoughte that it was harde to finde a bettre waye of curyng, then that the which of suche antiquitie was by longe practise founde oute and allowed, and deliuered vnto them by suche a continuaunce. The Egiptians do worship aboue measure certeine beastes, not onely whilest they be onliue,17 but also when they are dead. As the Catte, the Icneumon the dogge, the hauke, the woulfe, the Cocodrille, and many other like. They are not onely not ashamed to professe the worship of these openly, but setting them selues out in the honouring of them to the vttermoste: they compte it asmuch praise and glory to them selues, as yf they bestowed the like on the Goddes. And they go about on procession with the propre Images of them, from citie, to citie, and from place, to place; holding them vp and shewing them a farre of vnto other, which fall on their knees, and euery one worship them. When any one of them dieth, they couer it with Sarcenet, and houling, and crieng, and beating of their breastes they all to bestrawe the carckesse with salte. And after they haue embalmed it with the licour of the Cedre and other fragraunt oyntmentes, and oyles, to preserue it the longer: thei bewrye it in holy sepulture. If a man haue slayne any of these beastes willingly: he is codempned to death. But yf he haue slaine an catte or a snyte, 18 willingly or vnwillingly: the people ronneth vpon him vppon heapes, and withoute all ordre of Iustice or lawe, in moste miserable wise torment him to death. Vpon feare of the which daungier who soeuer espieth one of those lyeng dead: standing a farre, he howleth and crieth professing that he is not giltie of the death. These beastes with great attendaunce and chardge are kept vp aboute the cloistres of the Temple, by men of no meane reputation: whiche fiede them with floure and otemeale, and diuers deinties, sopped and stieped in milke. And they set euery daie before them goose, bothe sodden and rosted. And before those that delight al in raw meate they sette birdes and rawe foules. Finally as I said they kiepe them all with great diligence and coste. They lament their death asmoche as the death of their owne children, and bury them more sumptuously then their substance doth stretch. In so moche that Ptolomeus Lagus reigning in Egipt, when there chaunced a cowe to die in Memphis for very age: he that had taken charge of the kepyng of her, bestowed vpon the buriall of her (beside a greate some of mony that was giuen him for the keping) fiftie talentes of siluer, that he borowed of Ptolome. Peraduenture these thynges will seme vnto some men to wondreful: but he wil wondre asmoche yf he considre what communely is done emonge euery of the Egiptians in the funeralle of their deade.
When any man is departed his lyfe, all his niere friendes and kindesfolke, throwing dirte vpon their heades, go wieping and wailing rounde about the citie vntle the Corps be buried. And in the meane season they neyther bathe, ne drincke wine, or eate any meate, but that that is most base and vile, ne weare any apparell that is gorgeous or faire. They haue thre sortes of Sepulchres, Sumptuous, meane, and basse. In the firste sorte they bestowe a talente of siluer. Aboute the seconde, twenty Markes, and aboute the thirde litle or nothing. There be certaine Pheretrers, 19 whose facultie it is to sette forthe burialles, whiche learne it of their fathers and teache it their children. These when a funeral happeneth, make vnto him that is doer for the deade, an estimate of the exequies in writing, whiche the doer may at his pleasure enlarge or make lesse. When thei are ones fallen at appoyncte, the bodye is deliuered to the Pheretrer to bee enterred accordyng to the rate that they agreed vpon. Then the bodie beyng laied foorthe, commeth the Phereters chiefe cutter, and he appoincteth his vndrecutter a place on the side haulfe of the paunche, wher to make incision, and how large. Then he with a sharpe stone (whiche of the country fro whence it commeth, they call Ethiopicus) openeth the left side as farre as the lawe permitteth. And streight with all spiede ronneth his way from the company standing by, which curse him and reuile him and throwe many stones aftre him. For they thincke there yet remaineth a certeine hatred due vnto him that woundeth the body of their frinde. Those that are the seasoners and embalmers of the body (whome they calle poulderers) they haue in greate honour and estimacion, for that they haue familiarite with the priestes, and entre the temples together with them. The bodye nowe commen to their handes, one emong all (the reste standing by) vnlaceth the entrailes, and draweth them out at the foresaid incision, all sauing the kidneis, and the harte. These entrailes are taken by another at his hande, and wasshed in wine of the country Phenicea, wherin are enfused many soote20 odours and drugges. Then enoincte they the whole bodye ouer, firste with Cedre and then with other oynctementes, xxx. daies and aboue. Then do thei ceare it ouer with Mirrhe and Cinamome and suche other thinges as wil not onely preserue it to continuaunce, but also make it soote smelling. The Corps thus being trimmed, is deliuered to the kindesfolke of the deade, euery parte of it kepte so whole (not an heare of his browes or eye liddes being hurte) that it raither lieth like one being in sliepe then like a dead corpse. Before the body be enterred, the kindesfolke of the deade signifie to the iudges, and the friendes of this passed, the day of the burial. Whiche (according to the maner then vsed) thei terme the deades passaige ouer the mere. The maner wherof is this.
The iudges, aboue xl. in nomber, sittinge on the farther side of the mere, on a compassed benche wheling haulfe rounds and the people standing about them: The bodie is put into a litle boate made for the nones, and drawen ouer to the iudges by a chorde. The body then standing before the iudges in the sight of the people, before it be cofred, if ther be any manne that haue aught to saye against the dead, he is permitted by the lawe. Yf any be proued to haue liued euyll, the iudges geue sentence that the bodye shall not be buried. And who so is founde vniustelye to haue accused, suffreth greate punyshemente therfore. When no manne wyll accuse, or he that accused is knowen to haue slaunderously done it, the kinsfolke endyng their mournyng: tourne them selues now to the prayse of the dead, nothing aftre the maner of the Grecians, for that the Egiptians thinke themselues all to be gentlemen alike. But beginnyng at his childehode, in the whiche thei reherse his bringing vp, nourtering and scholyng, thei passe to his mannes age, their commending his godlines, his iustice, his temperaunce, and the residewe of his vertues. And calling vpon the vndre earthe, goddes, they beseche them to place him emonge the godlye and good. To the which wordes all the whole multitude crieth Amen: showtyng oute, and magnifieng the glorye of the deade, as thoughe they shoulde be with the vnder earth goddes, among the blessed for euer. This done euery man burieth his dead, some in Sepulchres made for the purpose, and other that haue no suche preparacion, in their strongest wall at home in their house, setting vp the cofre ther tabernacle wyse. But they that for some offence, or debte of enterest, or suche like, are denied their bewriall, are sette vp at home without any cofre, vntle their successours growyng to abilite canne dischardge their debtes and offences, and honourably bewrie them.
There is a maner emong them, sometyme to borowe money vpon their parentes corpses, deliueryng the bodies to the creditours in pledge. And who so redemeth theim not, ronneth into vtter infamie, and is at his death, denied his bewriall. A manne (not altogether causeles) mighte merueile, that thei could not be contente to constitute lawes for the framyng of the maners of those that are onliue, but also put ordre for the exequies, and Hearses of the deade. But the cause why thei bent them selues so much hervnto, was for that thei thought ther was no better waie possible, to driue men to honestie of life. The Grekes, which haue set furthe so many thynges in fained tales, and fables of Poetes (farre aboue credite) concernyng the rewarde of the good, and punishment of the euill: could not with all their deuices, drawe men to vertue, and withdrawe them from vices. But rather contrariwise, haue with them that be leudely disposed: broughte all together in contempte and derision. But emong the Egiptians, the punishemente due vnto the wicked and lewed, and the praise of the godlie and good, not heard by tales of a tubbe,21 but sene daiely at the eye: putteth both partes in remembraunce what behoueth in this life, and what fame and opinion thei shall leaue of them selues, to their posteritie. And hervppon it riseth, that euery man gladly emong them, ensueth good ordre of life. And to make an ende of Thegiptians, me siemeth those Lawes are of very righte to be compted the beste, whiche regarde not so muche to make the people riche, as to aduance them to honestie and wisedome, where riches of necessitie must folowe.
11 To broke i.e. to deal, or transact business particularly of an amorous character. (See Fansh. Lusiad, ix., 44; and Daniel, Queen’s Arcadia, iii., 3.)
12 To bend.
13 From the expression to shoot at rovers, i.e., at a mark, but with an elevation, not point blank.
14 Probably from the old French, encloyer, to glut, or surfeit.
15 It may interest readers to see how much the knowledge of Africa had extended in 150 years. Cluverius, in his “Introductio in Geographiam.” 1659, says:—
Summa Africa descriptio.
Asiæ exiguo Isthmo annectitur maxima Orbis terrarum peninsula Africa, tria millia et triginta circiter mill German. ambitu complectens. Isthmi intercapedo est mill. xxv. Pleraque Africæ inculta, et aut arenis sterilibus obducta, aut ob sitim coeli terrarumque deserta sunt, aut infestantur multo ac malefico genere animalium; in universum vasta est magis quam frequens. Quædam tamen partes eximie fertiles. Græcis Libya dicitur, à Libya Epaphi filii Iovis filia: Africam autem ab Afro Libys Herculis filio dictam volunt. Maria eam cingunt, qua Sol oritur Rubrum, qua medius dies Æthiopicum, qua occidit Sol Atlanticum; ab Septemtrionibus Internum, Africum seu Libycum dictum, qua eam alluit. Longitudo summa computatur ab Herculis freto ad promontorium Bonæ Spei mill. DCC. Latitudo inter duo promontoria, Hesperium, vulgo C. Verde, et Aromata, quod est juxta fauces Arabici sinus, vulgo nunc Coarda fui, mill. DL. Terra ipsa, nisi qua interno mari accedit, obscure veteribus nota. Vltra autem Nili fontes ac montes Lunæ prorsus incognita.
Regiones atque gentes in quas divisa fuit quondam, sunt, Ægyptus, Cyrenaïca, Africa Minor, seu proprie dicta, Troglodytæ, Garamantes, Numidia, Mauritania, Gaetulia, Libya interior, Arabia Troglodytica et Æthiopia.
Prima Africæ Asiæque proxima est Ægyptus, quam veteres Geographi in Asiæ regionibus computarunt. At posteriores, Arabico sinu, vt ante dictum, inter Asiam Africamque termino constituto, Africæ eam contribuerunt.
Nomen traxit ab Ægypto Danai fratre; ante Aëria dicta. Terminatur à Septemtrione suo mari, id est, Ægyptio, ab Ortu Arabia Petræa et dicto sinu; a Meridie Æthiopia, ab Occasu Cyrenaïca. Longa est a Pelusíaco Nilí ostio ad Catabathmum opidum milliar. CL. Lata à Nili ostiis, ad opidum Metacompsum Nilo adpositum, nunc Conzo, mill. c.
Divisa fuit generatim in Superiorem, quæ in Meridiem vergit, et Inferiorem, quæ mari interno alluitur. Superiorem rursus Nilus dividebat in Libycam, qua Occidentem, et Arabicam, qua Orientem spectat. Hinc populi Arabægyptii, illinc Libyægyptii, dicti. Inferioris pars est Marcotis, sive Marmarica, vltima versus Occidentem Cyrenaïcæ contermina. Speciatim vero universa Ægyptus in complures præfecturas descripta erat, quas Græco vocabulo Nomos vocarunt.
De urbibus Ægypti.
Ægyptus super ceteram antiquitatis gloriam, viginti millia urbium sibi Amase regnante habitata quondam prætulit; postea quoque sub Romano imperio multis, etiamsi ignobilibus, frequens.
Clarissima omnium fuit Alexandria, caput Ægypti totiusque Africæ, post deletam Carthaginem prima; ab Alexandro Magno condita; postea in tantam aucta multitudinem atque frequentiam, uti uni tantum Romæ cederet. Secunda ab hac Diospolis, sive Thebae cognomine Ægyptiæ; quas centum portas habuisse ferunt; sive, at alii ajunt, centum aulas, totidem olim Principum domos; solitasque singulas, ubi negotium exegerat, ducenos armatos milites effundere. Deinde Memphis, regia quondam: juxta quam pyramides, regum sepulchra. Turres sunt fastigiatæ, ultra celsitudinem omnnem, quæ fieri manu possit; itaque mensuram umbrarum egressæ, nullas habent umbras, regum pecuniæ otiosa ac stulta ostentatio. Reliquæ urbes sunt, Syene, Sais, Bubastis, Elephantis, Tentyris, Arsinoe et Abydus, Memnonis olim regia; postea Osiris fano inclyta: et Arabiæ contermina, claritatis magnæ Heliopolis, id est, Solis urbs. In Marmarica vicus fuit Apis, nobilis religione Ægypti locus. Fuit et Labyrinthus nullo addito ligno exædificatus, domos mille et regias duodecim perpetuo parietis ambitu amplexus, marmore exstructus et tectus, unum in se descensum habens, intus pene innumerabiles vias, multis ambagibus huc et illuc remeantibus.
De incolis Ægypti ac Nilo flumine; item de Libya exteriore.
Ipsi Ægyptii, hominum vetustissimos se prædicantes, cum Scythis de gentis antiquitate olim contenderunt. Antiquissimos esse post Syros, vel ipsa sacra Scriptura attestatur. Disciplinarum complurium inventores rerumque divinarum ac siderum peritissimi dicti sunt, quare ad eos Dædalus, Melampus, Pythagoras, Homerus et alii complures eruditionis causa profecti.
Sub regibus esse jam inde ab initio rerum consueverunt, modo suis, modo Æthiopibus; dein Persis ac Macedonibus; moxque iterum suis, donec Romani, Augusto debellante, in provinciam redegerunt Ægyptum. Post hoc Saraceni eam occuparunt: quibus successit Sultanorum inclytum nomen, ex Circassis Tartarorum gente ortum. Postremi Turcæ ann. M DXVI invaserunt, qui etiam nunc tenent.
Sed de Nilo hoc loco pauca quædam retulisse haud abs re fuerit. Terra ipsa Ægyptus expers imbrium mire tamen fertilis, et hominum aliorumque perfoecunda generatrix. Nilus id efficit, amnium in internum mare permeantium maximus. Hic in Africæ desertis, montibus Lunæ ortus, haud statim Nilus est, et primum ingentem lacum Nilidem, qui nunc Zaire et Zembre dicitur, CXX. milliar. German. permeans, cum diu simplex sævusque receptis dextera magnis aquis descendit, Astapus cognominatus, quod Æthiopum lingua significat aquam è tenebris profluentem, circa Meroen, Insularum, quas innumeras lateque patentes spargit, clarissimam, lævo alveo Astabores dictus est, hoc est, ramus aquæ venientis è tenebris; dextero veto Astusapes, quod latentis significationem adjicit, nec ante, quam ubi rursum coit, Nilua dictus est. Inde partim asper, partimnavigia patiens; mox præcipiti cursu progressus, inter occursantes scopulos non fluere immenso fragore creditur, sed ruere. Postea lenis, et fractis aquis domitaque violentia, et spatio fessus, tandem ad [Greek: Delta] opidum per omnem Ægyptum vagus et dispersus, septem ingentibus ostiis in mare Ægytium se evomit. Bis in anno, certis diebus auctu magno per totam spatiatus Ægyptum, foecundus innatat terris. Causas hujus incrementi varias prodidere; sed maxime probabiles duas: Etefiarum eo tempore ex adverso flantium repercussum, ultro in ora acto mari: aut imbres Æthiopiæ æstivos, iisdem Etesiis nubila illò ferentibus ex reliquo orbe. Idem amnis unus omnium nullas expirat auras.
Cæterum à tergo Ægypti versus Meridiem, juxta sinistram Nili ripam, Libya est exterior ad Æthiopiam extensa: nunc est Elfocat desertum et Gaoga.
Cyrenaïca, Africa Minor, Libyæ deserta, Troglodytæ et Garmantes.
Ægypto annexa est Cyrenaïca regio, Ammonis oraculo maxime clara, nuunc Barchanæ provinciæ dimidia pars Orientalis, eadem Pentapolitana dicta, à quinque insignium urbium numero, quæ Berænice, Arsinoe, Ptolemais, Apollonia, et ipsa Cyrene, unde regioni nomen. Græci hanc condiderunt, ex Thera insula. Ægæi maris profecti. Ipsi Cyrenenses privata sorte inter Ægyptios ac Poenos diu egerunt; dein cum Carthaginiensibus de agrorum finibus magnum ac diuturnum bellum gesserunt. Mox Carthagine deleta, et ipsi cum reliqua Africa Romano Imperio cesserunt. Posthinc solum eorum Sultanis, tandem Turcis.
Sequitur Africa Minor sive proprie dicta. Terminatur à Septemtrione Africo pelago, ab Ortu sinu magnæ Syrtis, à Meridie montium perpetuis jugis; quibus à Libyæ desertis et Gætulis discernitur; ab Occasu Tusca amne. Continet hodie Tunetanum regnum.
Fluvii in ea clari Cinyphus, Triton, Tritonidem paludem trahens: Catada, ad Carthaginem se devolvens, et Bagradas omnium maximas ad Vticam, ac Tuscaterminus Africæ Minoris.
Populorum varia nomina. Clarissimi Nasamones, extra Africam propriam etiam Cyrenaïcæ et Marmaricæ contermini; quos antea Mesammones Græci adpellaverunt, ab argumento loci, medios inter arenas sitos, et ab his sublati Psylli, quorum corpori ingenitum fuit virus exitiale serpentibus, ut cujus odore vel fugarent vel sopirent eas: et supra Carthaginem Libyphoenices, iidem et Poeni à Phoenice Tyro profecti, Duce Eliza sive Didone, quæ Carthaginem condidit.
Vrbium celeberrimæ Lepris magna, quæ et Neapolis, Abrotonum, Taphræ, Capsa, Thysdrus, Thapsus, Leptis parva, Rhuspina, Adrumetum, Clupea, Turres, Vthina et Carthago, Romæ æmula, terrarum cupida, opulentissima quondam totius Africæ, antequam Romani tribus bellis devictam deleverunt. Vtica Catonis, qui inde Vticensis, morte nobilis.
Libya deserta, Troglodytæ et Garamantes.
Ab Africæ minoris tergo versus Austrum Libyæ deserta fuerunt; ultraque Troglodytæ, nunc Berdoa desertum. Hos tegit ab Austro Ater mons, et trans eum Garamantes populi clari, nunc Borno regnum. Caput gentis fuit Garama, quam hodieque eodem nomine exstare tradunt. Debris inclyta affuso fonte, cujus aquæ ex coelesti quidem vertigine mutant qualitatem, at controversa siderum disciplina; quidpe qui friget calore, calet frigore; à medio scilicet die ad noctem mediam aquis ferventibus, totidemque horis ad medium diem rigentíbus.
Cæterum et Troglodytas et Garmantas olim Romanorum arma superaverunt.
Numidia et Mauritania.
A Tusca amne usque ad Ampsagam fluvium litori Africo praetenditur Numidia, Masinissæ Regis nomine maxime clara, nunc Tremisenum regnum eodem porrigitur situ. Gens ipsa Numidae, ante Nomades à Græcis adpellati, à permutandis pabulis, mapalia sua plaustris circumferentes, ut nunc Tattarorum fert mos.
Fluviorum celeberrimus est Rubricatus. Vrbes quam plurimæ, nobilesque; sed Cirtha eminens; Sittianorum, postquam Romani tenuere, colonia dicta: quondam Iubæ et Syphacis domus, cum foret opulentissima. Dein sequuntur Cullu, Ruscicade, Bulla regia, Tacatua, Hippo regius, Sicca, Tabrachæ: Hanc quoque regionem debellatam in provinciæ formam redegerunt Romani.
Vltima ad Occasum est Mauritania; in qua praecipua gens Maurorum, unde nomen regioni. Hos Graeci Maurusios dixerunt. Terminantur à Meridie Atlante minori, quo submoventur à Gaetulis: qui et ipsi postea oppressis et exstinctis Maurusiis Mauritaniae majorem partem occuparunt: ab Occasu est Oceanus Atlanticus, à Septemtrione fretum Herculis et mare internum; Ab Ortu primo Mulucham habuit flumen, quod Mauros à Numidis discernebat; at quum ea Numidiae pars, quae est inter Ampsagam et Mulucham, Mauritaniae adjiceretur, finis huic constitutus est Ampsaga. Continet hodie tria regna: Darense, Fezense et Maurocitanum. Dividebatur autem olim Malva flumine in Caesariensem quae Numidiam contingit, et Tingitanam quae Oceano perfunditur. Regna fuere ad C. Caesarem usque Imperatorem, qui in duas divisit provincias.
Caesariensis provincia, quam nunc totam Dara regnum obsidet, antea Bocchi regnum adpellata fuit. Partem tamen inter Malvam et Mulucham Massaesylornm gens tenuit. Caput provinciae Iulia Caesarea, aliquando ignobilis, cum Iol esset; postea quia Iubae regia, illustris facta. Reliqua opida sunt Cartenna, Saldae, Opidum novum, Rusazus, Ruscurium, Rusconia, Tipasa, Tubusuptus et Tucca, impositum mari ac flumini Ampsagae.
Tingitana provincia, quam nunc duo regna Fez et Morocco occupant, ab urbe Tingi, quae nunc vulgo Tanger, cognomen accepit, ante Bogudiana dicta à Rege Bogud. Opida in ea, Tingi modo dictum, caput provinciae, ab Anteeo conditum; Iulia Constantia, Zilis, Volubilia et Lixus, vel fabulosissime ab antiquis narrata. Ibi quidpe regia Antaei, certamenque cum Hercule, et Hesperidum horti.
Gætuli, Atlas mons, Libya interior et Æthiopia.
A tergo Mauritaniarum Africaeque Minoris Gaetulorum gens, et ipsa quoque Romanorum armis debellata, longe lateque incoluit, quidpe quae hodie occupat quicquid terrarum à Lempta opido ad Oceanum usque, spatio mill. Germanicorum CCCL protenditur. Hoc spatio nunc est Biledulgerit provinciae major pars, ubi Targa regnum, et quatuor deserta, Lempta, Zuenziga, Zanhaga, Hair.
Gaetulos à Meridie claudit mons Atlas, totius Africae vel fabulosissimus. E mediis hunc arenis in coelum usque attolli prodiderunt celebrati auctores, asperum, squalentem, qua vergat ad litora Oceani, cui cognomen imposuit: eundem opacum nemorosumque, et scatebris fontium riguum; qua spectat Africam, fructibus omnium generum sponte ita subnascentibus, ut nunqnam satietas voluptatibus desit. Incolarum neminem interdiu cerni: silere omnia haud alio quam solitudinum horrore. Eundemque noctibus micare crebris ignibus, Ægipanum Satyrorumque lascivia impleri, tibiarum ac fistulae cantu tympanorumque et cymbalorum sonitu strepere.
Vltra Atlantem Libya est interior ad Nigrum usque flumen, vastarum solitudinum, nunc desertum Sarra dicta.
Æthiopia et Troglodytica.
Iam vero quicquid ultra Nigrum flumen est et Ægyptum, versus utrumque mare Atlanticum Rubrumque, Æthiopes tenuerunt, gens omnium Africae terrae amplissima, extra Africam à vetustissimis Geographorum posita. Ab Æthiope Vulcani filio cognominati; vel, ut alii, ab nigro vultus corporisque colore; [Greek: aithops] quidpe significat nigrum.
Divisa fuit Æthiopia in varia Æthiopum genera; quorum Ptolemaeus innumera tradit nomina. At clarissimi omnium fuere Nigritae; à Nigro flumine dicti; et Nubiorum gens magna, unde hodieque vastissima regio dicitur Nubia. Ea autem Æthiopiae pars quae Nilo utrimque adjacet, Æthiopia dicitur sub Ægypto; atque in ea ad Nili paludes seu lacus Cinnamomifera regio. At totum sinus Arabici laevum larus Arabes tenuere Troglodytae, unde regio ipsa Troglodytica.
De incolis universæ Africæ novaque ejus descriptione; ac primum de Ægypto
Qvinam mortales Ægyptum antiquitus incoluerint, ante dictum set. Reliqua Africae versus Occasum mari adjacentia tenuerunt populi commemorati. Advenae autem primi fuere Phoenicum coloni aliique ex Asia atque Ægypto profecti. Postea paruit Romanis; mox Græcis Imperatoribus totum hoc terrarum spatium. Deinde Vandalis, Saracenis, Arabibus. Nunc partem tenet Turca, partem Serifus, quem vocant; partem reges alii, partem denique Hispaniarum Rex.
At Æthiopes à suo solo neque recesserunt, neque in id alios colonos receperunt; id longinquitas effecit regionis immensaeque intercedentium desertorum vastitates.
Sed enarrata Africae antiquitate, res postulat, uti novam etiam ejus descriptionem subjiciamus.
Dividitur nunc universa in septem potissimum partes sive regiones, quarum nomina sunt haec: Ægyptus, Barbaria, Biledulgerid, Sarra desertum, Nigritæ, Æthiopia Interior, sive Superior, quod Abissinorum imperium, et Æthiopia Exterior sive Inferior.
Ægypti (quam Turca obtinet) caput nunc est Cairum, vulgo Alcair, Chaldaeis Alchabyr, urbs magnitudine stupenda, Emporium celeberrimum, Circassiorum Ægypti Sultanoram quondam regia. Prope est Materea hortus balsami fructibus consitus, quod uni terrae Iudaeae quondam concessum, hodie nisi in hoc loco, nusquam colitur.
Vltra Nilum pyramides visuntur stupendae altitudinis, ut ante memoravimus.
Secunda claritate à Cairo est Alexandria, splendida quondam atque opulentissima civitas, nunc crebris bellis destructa atque concisa, celeberrimum Christianis mercatoribus praebet emporium. Nobile exinde est cum arce opidum Raschitt, quod Europaei Rosettam vocant. Damiata, olim Pelusium, Ptolemaei Geographi incunabulis insigne est.
Ægypto continuatur nobilissima totius Africae regio Barbaria; in sex partes divisa, quarum una est provincia Barcana, quinque reliquae sunt regna, Tunetanum, Tremisenum, Fessanum, Maurocanum et Darense.
Inter Ægyptum et Tunetanum regnum litori praetenditor Barcana regio, à Barce antiqua urbe cognominata, soli asperitate pariter ac siccitate sterilis.
Tunetanum regnum veterem Africam minorem ferme totam occupat. Caput est Tunetum, sive Tunisa, vulgo Tunisi; insignis, vetus ac satis ampla urbs, quae ex Carthaginis ruinis crevit; emporium Venetis et Genuensibus aliisque mercatoribus celebre. Secunda est Tripolis nova, quae Tripolis Barbariae dicitur, ad differentiam Tripolis Syriae: emporium est Europæis mercatoribus celeberrimum. Bona etiam, quae olim Hippo, D. Augustina Episcopatu nota, nunc emporium haud postremum. Intus vero est Constantina Romanarum antiquitatum reliquiis conspicua.
Caput regni est Tremisen, amplissima quondam, bellis gravissimis postea tenuata. In litore est Algier, emporium satis nobile, at piratica infame, Christianis mancipiis refertissimum; urbs ipsa moenibus, arcibus ac tormentis bellicis adeo munita, ut inexpugnabilis credatur.
Ad ipsum fretum Herculis Hispaniae objacet Fessanum regnum, cujus caput Fez, urbs totius Barbariae princeps, ingens, opulenta, frequens, splendida ac magnificis superbisque aedificiis miranda.
Tanger, Sebta, Arxilla, amplae ad fretum urbes, Hispanicae sunt ditionis.
Caput est Maurocum, vulgo Maroc, amplissima ac celeberrima olim, inter maximas universi orbis memorata: at postea ab Arabibus divexata, nunc maligne colitur. Secunda est Taradante.
Intus Maurocano, Fessano ac Tremiseno regnis confine est regnum Darense amplissimum, olim Caesariensis Mauritania dictum. Caput est Dara, unde regioni nomen, tenuibus, ut totum regnum, atque egenis incolis habitata. Melilla ad mare internum conspicua urbs Hispano paret.
Biledulgerit, Sarra desertum, Nigritæ, Abissini.
A Tergo dictarum regionum est Biledulgerit regio, longissimo tractu ab Ægypti confinibus ad Oceanum Atlanticum porrecta. Nomen ei à dactyloram proventu inditum. Deserta in ea sunt, Lempta, Hair, Zuenziga, Zanhaga à singulis opidis cognominibus, adpellata. Regna Targa, Bardoa et Gaoga, itidem ab opidis dicta.
Continuatur huic regioni versus Meridiem Sarra, cujus longitudo à regno Gaoga ad regnum Gualata extenditur.
Inde Nigritarum ampla est regio, ad utramque Nigri amnis ripam: longitudo ejus porrigitur à Nilo et Meroe insula, usque ad Nigri ostia et Oceanum. Regna in ea sunt haec, ab urbibus denominata: Gualata, Hoden, Genocha, Senega, Tombuti, Melli, Bitonin, Gurnea, Temian, Dauma, Cano, Cassena, Benin, Zanfara, Guangara, Borno, Nubia, Biafra, Medra.
Æthiopia Interior quæ est Abissinorum.
Interiori Æthiopiae imperat Abissinorum Rex, qui Presbyter sive Pretiosus Ioannes, vulgo Prete Gianni, vocatur; magno, recepto tamen errore; cum is quondam in Asiae, ut relatum est, regno Tenduc regnaverit. Abasenos populos recenset Stephanus in Arabia; unde verisimile est, eos in Africam trajecto sinu Arabico commigrasse. Aut sane in ipsa Africa fuerunt ad sinistrum Arabici sinus latus, ubi Arabiam Troglodyticam supra memoravimus. Haec quidpe nunc sub Abissinorum imperio est. Alii tamen ab Arabico vocabulo Elhabaschi (sic enim Mauri Principem Abissinorum adpellant) vulgo factum opinantur Abassi, ac deinde Abasseni; quod denique commutatione vocalium in Abissinorum nomen evasit.
Clauditur regnum ab Ortu Arabico sinu et regionibus Ajana ac Zangebara; à Meridie Monomotapa; ab Occasu Congo et Medar regnis; à Septemtrione Nubia et Ægypto. Longum est ab Ægypto ad Monomotapa usque mill. DLXXX. Latum inter fauces Arabici sinus et Nigrum fluvium mill. CCCCL.
Dividitur in compluria regna sive provincias: quarum nomina sunt, Dasila, Barnagasso, Dangali, Dobas, Trigemahon, Ambiancantiva, Vangue, Bagamidri, Beleguanze, Angote, Balli, Fatigar, Olabi, Baru, Gemen, Fungi, Tirut, Esabela, Malemba. Vrbes in universo imperio paucae sunt: vicis plurimum habitatur, domibus ex creta et stramine constructis. Rex ipse (qui albo esse colore fertur) sub tentoriis degit, quorum sex millia eum sequuntur. Amara arx est munitissima, in monte Amara condita; in qua regis filii sub validissimo præsidio educantur, donec patre defuncto heres producatur.
Æthiopia Exterior sive Inferior; item Insulæ Africæ adjacentes.
Reliquum Africæ Æthiopia perhibetur exterior sive inferior; ab Oriente, Meridie et Occidente Oceano perfusa; à Septemtrione quasi duobus brachiis Abissinorum imperium hinc inde complectitur.
Regiones, in quas dividitur, sunt Congi, Monomotapa, Zangibar, et Ajan. Pleraque maritimorum à Portugalensibus tenentur firmissimis munimentis ac praesidiis.
Congi regnum (quod alliis Manicongo) Oceano Æthiopico perfusum, nomen habet à capite suo urbe Congi. Incolae sunt Christiani. Terra ipsa fluminum aquis maxime rigua. Dividitur in provincias sex; quas illi Mani, id est, Praefecturas, vocant. Sunt autem Bamba, Songo, Sundi, Pango, Batta et Pemba. Regia est, civitas S. Salvatoris, quae ante Banza.
Monomotapa vocabulum significat Imperatorem; unde ipsi terrae, cui hic imperat, nomen inditum. Solum est fertile atque amoenum; amnes aurum, silvae elephantos magna copia producunt:
Clauditur regnum ab Ortu, Meridie et Occasu Oceano; à Septemtrione regno Congi, Abissinorum imperio et regione Zangibar. Longitudo ejus est inter duo maria Rubrum Æthiopicumque juxta Lunae montes milliar. German, CCCC. Latitudo inter Nili fontes et promontorium Bonæ Spei mill. CCC.
Caput regni ac sedes regum est Monomotapa, ad flumen S. Spiritus. Hinc versus Septemtrionem mill. circiter L. distat nobile aedificium, amplum atque antiquum, quadra forma ex ingentibus saxis constructum.
Zangibar et Ajan.
Monomotapae, qua Rubro mari perfunditur, continuatur Zangibar regio; cujus partes, Cafares populi, Monomotapae proximi, et regna Mozambike, Kiloa, Mombaza ac Melinde, ab urbibus singulis denominata; quarum Mozambike in insula condita, celeberrimum est Europaeis mercatoribus emporium. Sequitur versus Septemtrionem juxta litus maris Rubri Ajan regio, cujus partes duo regna Del et Adea Magaduzzo.
Insulæ ad Africam.
Insularum ad Africam terram maxima est in Rubro mari Menuthias Cerne Plinio dicta; nunc vulgo insula Divi Laurentii, et incolis Madagascar id est, Lunae insula, felici aromatum proventu dives, longitudine mill. German, CCL, lat. LXXX occupans.
At in Atlantico Oceano contra Hesperium promontorium, quod nunc est Cabo Verde, Hesperides sunt insulae duae; ultraque Gorgades, Gorgonum quondam domus: nunc in universam Islas de C. Verde Hispanis dicuntur, hoc est insulae promontorii Viridis. Contra Mauritanium sunt Fortunatae, VII numero, quarum una Canaria vocitata, à multitudine canum ingentis magnitudinis, ut auctor est Plinius. Vnde universae Fortunatae, nunc Canariae dicuntur, Hispaniarum Regi subjectae. Vltra versus Septemtrionem est Cerne, nunc Madera dicta.
Atque haec est totius Africae brevis descriptio.]
16 Equal to six shillings and eight pence.
17 I have never met with this form of the word.
18 A snipe, from the Saxon snyta. “Greene-plover, snyte, / Partridge, larke, cocke, and phessant.” Heyw. Engl. Trav., Act i., Scene ii.
19 Query, ferretrers, carriers.
20 Sweet. “They dauncen deftly, and singen soote, / In their merriment.” Spenser’s Hobbinol’s Dittie, Sheph. Kal., Apr. iii.
21 Swift took the title of his well-known book from this old expression. It appears in Bale’s “Comedye Concerning Three Laws,” compiled in 1538: “Ye say they follow your law, / And vary not a shaw, / Which is a tale of a tub.”
Of the Penois there are many and sondrie nacions. Adrimachidæ lieng toward Egipte, are like of maners to Thegiptians, but their apparell is like to the other Penois. Their wiues haue vpon eche legge, a houpe of Latton [Transcriber’s note: “Lat houpe ofton” in original]. Thei delight in long heare, and looke what lyce it fortuneth any of them to take aboute them: thei bite theim, and throwe them awaie, the whiche propretie, thei onely of all the Poeni haue. As also to present their maidens that are vpon mariage, to the kyng, whiche choosyng emong them the maiden that liketh hym beste, sieketh in her lappe, that aftre can neuer bee founde. The Nasamones (a greate and a terrible nacion, spoilers of suche Shippes as fortune to be throwen vpon the Sandes in the streightes) towarde Sommer, leauyng their cattle vpon the Sea coaste, goe doune into the plaine countrie to gather Dates, whiche are there very faire, and in greate plentie. Thei gather the boughes with the fruicte, not yet perfectely ripe, and laie them a Sonnyng to ripe. Afterward thei stiepe theim in Milke, and make soupinges and potages of theim. It is the maner emong theim, for euery man to haue many wiues: and the felowship of their wiues, that other vse in secrete: thei vse in open sights, in maner aftre the facion that the Massagetes vse. It is also the maner of the Nasamones, when any man marieth his first wife, to sende her about to euery one of the ghestes, to offer hym her body. And asmany as receiue her into armes, and shewe her the curtesie she comes for, must giue her some gifte, whiche she hath borne with her, home to her house. Their maner of takyng an othe, and foreshewyng of thinges to come, is thus.
Thei sweare by the menne that ware (by reporte) the best and moste iuste men emong them, layeng their handes on their Graues, or Tumbes. But for the fore knowledge of thynges, thei come to the Graues of their kyndreade, and there when thei haue praied their stinte, laye them doune vpon them to slepe: and loke what thei dreame, that, doe thei folowe. Where in confirmyng of our promise, we vse to strike handes (as we calle it) thei vse to drincke one to another: or elles if thei lacke liquour, to take duste fro the earth, and one to licke part of that to another. The Garamantes shonne the felowship and the sighte of all other peoples, and neither vse any kinde of weapon, or armour, ne yet dare defende them selues against other that vsed them. They dwell somwhat aboue the Nasamones, more vp londe. Aboute the sea coaste towarde the weste, ther bordereth vpon them the Maces: whiche shaue their heades in the crowne, and clyppe them rounde by the sides. The Gnidanes (nexte neighbours to the Maces) when they giue battaylle to the ostruthes, their brieding vnder the grounde, are armed with rawe felles of beastes. Their women ware prety wealtes of leather, euery one a greate manye whiche (as it is sayde) they begge of suche menne as haue lien with them. So that the moe she hath, the more she is estemed, as a deinty derling beloued of many. The Machlies dwelling aboute the mershe of Tritonides, vse to shaue their fore parte of their heade, and the Anses their hindre parte. The maydens of the Anses, at the yerely feastes of Minerua, in the honoure of the goddesse their country woman: deuiding them selues into two companies, vse to giue battaile, one parte to another with staues, and with stones: sayeng that thei obserue the maner of their country in the honour of her that we calle Minerua. And the maiden that departeth the battayle without wounde, thei holde her for no maide. But before ther battayle be fought, they determine that what mayden so euer beareth her selfe mooste valeaunte in the fielde, all the other maydens with commune consente shall garnishe her, and arme her, both with the armour of Grecia, and the helmet of Corinthe. And shal sette her in a chariot, and carye her rounde about the mershe. The same menne vsen their women as indifferently commune, as kyen to the bulle. The children remaine with the women vntil they be of some strengthe. Ones in a quartre the men do assemble wholy together, and then looke with whome the childe fantasieth mooste to abide, him do they compte for his father.
There is a people named Atlantes, of the mounte Athlas, by the whiche they dwell. These giue no names one to another as other peoples do, but echeman is namelesse. When the sonne passeth ouer their heades, they curse him, and reuyle him with all woordes of mischiefe: for that he is so broiling hote, that he destroieth bothe them and ther countrye.
They eate of no kinde of beaste, neither dreame in their sliepe. The Aphres (whice are all brieders of catteile) liue with flesshe and milke, and yet absteine they fro cowes milke, and all cowe fleshe, according to the maner of the Egiptians, and therefore kepe they none vp. The women of Cyrene thincke it not lawfull to strike a cowe, for Isis sake that is honoured in Egipt, to whome also they appoincte fasting, and feastefull daies, and obserue them solempnly. But the women of Barcea absteine bothe from cowe fleshe and sowe flesh. When their children are iiii. yeare olde they vse to cauterise them on the coron22 vaine (and some on the temple also) with a medecine for that purpose, made of woolle as it is plucked fro the shiepe: because thie should not at any time be troubled with rheumes or poses,23 and by that meanes they say they liue in very good health. Thei sacrifie after this maner. When in the name of their firste frutes they haue cutte of the eare of the beaste, they throwe it ouer the house. That done, they wring the necke on the one side. Of all the goddes they offre sacrifice to no more but Sonne and Mone. All the Aphres burye their deade as the Grecians doe, sauing the Nasamones, which bury them as thoughe they ware sitting: wayting well when any man lieth in drawing on, to set him on his taile, leaste he should giue vp the ghoste lieng vpright. Their houses are made of wickers, and withes, wrought aboute trees, moch like vnto those that we calle frankencence trees, and in suche sorte that they may tourne them rounde euery waye. The Maries, shaue the lefte side of their heade, and lette the heare growe on the right. They die their bodie in redde, and vaunte that they come of the Troianes. The women of the Zabiques (which are the next neighbours to the Maries) driue the cartes in the warres, in the which the men fight. Ther are a people called Zigantes, wher beside the great plentye of hony that they gather fro the Bies, they haue also certeine men that are makers of honye. They all die them selues with red, and eate apes fleshe, wherof thei that dwel in the mounteines haue great plentye. These al being of the part called Libye, liue for the moste parte a wilde lyfe abrode in the fieldes like beastes, making no household prouision of meate, ne wearing any maner of appareil but gotes felles. The gentlemen, and men of honour emong them, haue neither cities nor townes, but Turrettes builte vpon the waters side, in the which they laye vp the ouerplus of that that they occupy. They sweare their people euery yere to obeye their Prince, and that they that obey in diede, shoulde loue together as felowes and companions: but that the disobediente shoulde be pursued like felons and traitours. Their armour and weapon, are bothe acording to the nature of the country and contrimen: for wher thei of themselues are very quicke, and deliure 24 of bodye, and the country champaigne, and playne, they neither vse swearde, dagger, ne harneis, but onely cary thre Iauelines in their hande, and a nombre of piked and chosen stones, in a case of stiffe leather hanging aboute them. With these they vse bothe to fight and to skirmishe. In his coming towarde the ennemy, he throweth his stone, fetching his ronne, and maketh lightlye a narowe mysse, thoughe it be a good waye of: suche continuall practise they haue of it. They kiepe neither lawe ne faithe.
The Troglodites (whiche are also named of the Grecians pastours, for their fieding and brieding of catteille) a people of Ethiope, do lyue in companies, and haue their heade ouer them, whome they call Tiraunte. But not meaninge in him so much tirany in diede, as some time some of our gouernours vnder a fayrer name do execute. None of them hathe any seuerall wife, and therfore no seueral children, but bothe those in commune, the tiraunte excepted: Who hathe but one wyfe onely. To the which yf any manne do but approach or drawe nighe: he is condempned in a certeine nombre of cattaile to be paied to the Tiraunte. From the beginning of Iuly vntle about middle August (at the which time thei haue great plenty of raine) thei nourishe them selues with milke, and bloude, sodden a litle together. The pasture vplond being, dried away with the heate of the Sonne: They sieke downe to the marshe, and lowe groundes, for the whiche onely they be often at debate. When their catteil waxeth olde or sicke, they kyll them, and eate them, and altogether liue vpon such. They do not giue the childe the name of the father, but name him aftre a bull, a rambe or an eawe. And those call thei father (the beastes I meane of the masle kinde) and thother of the femel kynde, they call mother, because their daily fode is giuen by them. The people called Idiote, vse for their drincke the iuyce of a whinne named Paliurus. But the men of worshyp and gentlemen vse the iuce of a certeine floure they haue emonge them, whiche maketh drincke moche like the worste of the Renishe muste. And because thei cary great droues of catteile with them, they chaunge their soile often. Their bodies are all naked, sauing their priuities, whiche they hide with felles of beastes. All the Troglodites are circumcised aftre the maner of the Egiptians, sauing only the Claudians: whiche they so terme of claudicacion or limping. They onely, dwellinge from their childe hode within the country of the Hesternes, are not touched with rasour or knife. The Troglodites that are called Magaueres, carye for theyr armour and weapon, a rounde buckler of a rawe oxe hide, and a clubbe shodde with yron. Other haue bowes, and Iauelines. As for graues or places of buriall, they passe not. For they binde the heade, and the fiete of the dead together with witthes of Paliurus, and then setting it vp vpon some hilly place, haue a good sporte to all to bethwacke it with stones, vntle they lie heaped ouer the corps. Then laye they a goates horne on the toppe and departe, biddinge sorrowe go plaie him. They warre one with another, not as the Griekes vpon rancour and Ambicion, but onely for foode sake. In their skirmishes, firste they go to it with stones, as afore ye haue hearde, vntle it fortune some nombre to be hurte. Then occupieng the bowe (wherin they are very sure handed) thei kille one another vpon hepes. Those battayles are attoned by the women of mooste auncient age. For when they be ones comen into the middle emong them (as they maye do withoute harme, for that is compted abhominacion in any wise to hurte one of them) the battaille sodenly ceaseth. They that are nowe so fiebled with age, that they can no longer followe the heard: winding the tayle of an oxe aboute their throte choke vp and die. But he that differreth to rydde him selfe in this sorte: It is laweful for another (aftre a warninge) to doe it. And it is there compted a friendly benefaicte. Men also diseased of feures, oranye other incurable malady, they doe in lyke maner dispatche: iudginge it of all griefes the woorste, for that manne to liue, that canne nowe nothinge doe, why he shoulde desyre to lyue. Herodote writeth, that the Troglodites myne them selues caues in the grounde, wherin to dwell. Men not troubled with anye desire of riches, but raither giuing them selues to wilfull pouertie. They glory in nothing but in one litle stone, wherin appere thre skore sondry colours: which we therfore calle Exaconthalitus. They eate sondry kindes of venemous vermyne. And speake any distincte worde they cannot, but sieme rather to busse or thurre betwene thetiethe, then to speake.
There is another people dwelling in that Ethiope that lyeth aboue Egipte, called Ryzophagi, whiche bestowe muche time in digging vp of the rootes of Riedes growing niere aboute them, and in wasshing and clensing of the same, whiche afterward they bruse betwixt stones till thei become clammie, and so makes wiete cakes of them, muche facioned like a brick a hande broade. Those bake thei by the Sonne, and so eate them. And this kinde of meate onely, serueth them all they life tyme plentifully and enough, and neuer waxeth fulsome vnto theim. Thei neuer haue warre one with another, but with Lions, whiche comyng out of the deserte there, partly for shadowe, and partly for to praie vpon smaller beastes, doe oftymes wourie diuers of the Æthiopes, comyng out of the Fennes. In so muche that that nation had long sences bene vttrely destroyed by the Lions, excepte nature of purpose, had shewed them her aide. For toward the dogge daies, there come into that coaste, infinite swarmes of Gnattes, without any drifte of winde to enforce them. The men then flieng to the fennes, are not harmed by them. But thei driue the Lions with their stingyng and terrible buszyng, cleane out of that quartre. Next vpon these, bordre the Ilophagi and Spermatophagi, the one liuynge by suche fruicte as falleth from the trees, in Sommer, and the residew of the yere by suche herbes as thei picke vp in the shadowed groundes. The other, the Ilophagi, siekynge to the plaines with their wiues and their children, climbe trees, and gather, eate, and cary home: the tendre croppes and buddes of the boughes. And thei haue by continualle practise, suche a nimblenes in climbyng, that (a wondrefull thynge to be spoken) thei wille leape from boughe to boughe, and tree to tree like Cattes or Squirelles, and by reason of their slendrenes and lightenes, wille mounte vp on braunches and twigges, without daunger or hurte. For thoughe their fiete slippe, yet hange thei feste by the handes: and if thei bothe faile theim, yet falle thei so light, that thei be harmelesse.
These folkes go naked, and hold their wiues and children in commune. Emong them selues they fighte for their places without weapon: but against foreiners with staues. And wheare thei ouercome, there chalenge thei Lordeshippe. Thei communely dye for hongre, when their sight faileth them: whiche was their onely instrumente to finde their foode. The residewe of the countrie there aboute, do those Æthiopians holde, which are named Cynecy, not very many in nombre, but muche differing in life from the rest. For their Countrie beyng wooddie, and wilde, fulle of thicquettes, and skante of watre, thei are forced by night, for feare of wilde beastes, to slepe in trees: and toward the mornyng, all weaponed together, to drawe doune to the waters, wher thei shroude them selues into couert, and so abide close till the heate of the daie. At the whiche tyme the Bugles, Pardales, and other greate beastes, what for the heate, and what for thriste, flocke toguether to the watres. Assone as thei haue druncken, and haue well laden their beallies with watre, the Ethiopes startynge out vpon them with stakes, sharpened and hardened in the fire, and with stones, and with arrowes, and suche like weapon, at this aduauntage, slea them vpon heapes, and deuide the carkesses by compaignies to be eaten. And sometyme it happeneth that thei theim selues are slaine by some beast of force, howbeit very seldome. For thei euer by their pollicies and traines, doe more damage to the beastes, then the beastes can doe vnto them. If at any time thei lacke the bodies of the beastes, then take thei the rawe hides of suche as thei lateliest before had slaine, and clensyng them cleane fro the heare, thei sokynglie laie them to a softe fire; and when thei be throughly hette, deuide them emong the compaignie, whiche very griedely fille themselues of them.
They exercise their children whilest thei be boies, to throw the darte at a sette marke, and he that hitteth not the marke receiueth no meate. By the whiche maner of trainyng, hongre so worketh in the boies that thei become excellente darters.
The Acridophagie (a people borderyng vpon the deaserte) are somewhat lower of stature then the residewe, leane, and exceding blacke. In the Spring time, the Weste, and Southwest winde, bringeth vnto them out of the Deaserte, an houge nombre of Locustes, whiche are of verie greate bodie, and of wynge very filthily coloured. The Ethiopians well accustomed with their maner of flighte and trade, gather together into a long slade betwixte two hilles, a great deale of rubbeshe and mullocke, from places nighe hande, apte for fingry, and the grasse and all wiedes there aboute. And laieng it ready in heapes aforehande, a long the slade, when thei see the Locustes come with the winde like cloudes in the aire, thei set al on fire, and so swelte theim in the passing ouer, that thei bee skante full out of the slade, but thei fall to the grounde in suche plentie, that thei be to all the Acridophagi, a sufficient victuallyng. For thei poudre them with salte (wherof the countrie hath plentie) and so continually from yere to yere, liue by none other foode. For thei neither haue any kinde of catteille, ne fisshe can haue, beyng so farre fro the sea. And this maner of meate siemeth to theim, verie pleasaunte and fine.
Of bodie thei are very lighte, swifte of foote, and shorte liued as not passyng xl. yeres, he that liueth longest. Their ende is not more incredible, then it is miserable. For when their drawe into age, their briedeth a kinde of winghed lice in their bodies, of diuers colours, and very horrible, and filthie to beholde: whiche firste eate out their bealies, and then their brest, and so the whole body in a litle space. He that hath this disease, first as thoughe he had on hym some tickelyng ytche, all to beskratcheth his bodie with suche pleasure, as is also mingled with some smart, And within a litle while aftre, when the lyce beginne to craule, and the bodie beginneth to mattre, enraged with the bittrenes and grief of the disease, he teareth and mangleth his whole bodie with his nailes, putting furth in the mean while many a greuous grone. Then gussheth there out of hym, suche aboundaunce of lice, that a manne would thinke they had bene barelled in his body: and that the barel now broken, the swarme plomped out. And by this meanes, whether throughe the enfectious aire, or the corrupcion of their fieding, thei make a miserable ende.
Vpon the Southe border of Affrike, dwell there menne called of the Grekes Cynnamie, and of their neighbours Sauluages: Bearded, and that with aboundaunce of heare. Thei kiepe for the saufegarde of their liues, greate compaignies of wilde Mastiues: for that from midde Iune, till midde Winter, there entreth into their countrie, an innumerable sorte of Kine of Inde. Whether thei flie thether to saue them selues from other beastes, or come to sieke pasture, or by some instincte of nature vnknowen to manne, it is vncertaine. Against these, when the menne of their owne force, are not able to resist: thei defende themselues by the helpe of their dogges, and take many of them. Whereof thei eate parte whilest thei are freshe, and parte reserue thei in pouldre, for their aftre niede. Thei eate also many other kindes of beastes, whiche thei hunt with their dogges.
The laste of all the Affriens Southewarde, are the Ichthiophagi. A people borderyng vpon the Troglodities, in the Goulfe called Sinus Arabicus: whiche vnder the shape of man, liue the life of beastes. Thei goe naked all their life time, and make compte of their wiues and their children in commune. Thei knowe none other kindes of pleasure or displeasure, but like vnto beastes, suche as thei fiele: neither haue thei any respecte to vertue, or vice, or any discernyng betwixte goode or badde. Thei haue litle Cabanes not farre from the Sea, vpon the clieues sides: where nature hath made greate carfes, diepe into the grounde, and hollowe Guttres, and Criekes into the maigne lande, bowting and compayng in and out, to and fro, many sondrie waies. Whose entringes thenhabitauntes vse to stoppe vp with great heapes of calion and stones, whereby the criekes serue them now in the steade of nettes. For when the sea floweth (which happeneth there twise in the daye, aboute the houres of thre, and of nyne) the water swelleth so highe, that it ouerfloweth into the maigne shore, and filleth those crieques with the sea. And the fisshe folowing the tide, and dispersinge them selues abrode in the maigne londe to seeke their foode: at the ebbe when the water withdraweth, retiring together with it alway to the dieper places, and at laste remaining in these gutters and crieques, they are stopped in with the stone heapes, and at the lowe water lye drie. Then come the enhabitauntes with wyfe and children, take them, and laye them oute vpon the rocques against the midday sonne, wher, with the broiling heate of the same, they be within a while skorched and parched. Then do they remoue them, and with a litle beating separate the fysshe fro the bones. Then put they the fisshe into the hollowes of the rocques, and beat it to pomois, minglinge therewith the side of the whynne Paliurus. And so facion it into lumpes muche like a bricke, but somewhat longer. And when they haue taken them againe a litle by the sonne, they sitte them downe together, and eate by the bealy.
Of this haue thei alway in store, accordinge to the plenty that Neptune gyueth them. But when by the reason of tempest the sea ouerfloweth these places aboue his naturall course, and tarieth longer then his wonte, so that they can not haue this benefight of fisshing, and their store is all spent: they gather a kynde of great shelle fysshe, whose shelles they grate open with stones, and eate the fisshe rawe, in taste muche like to an oyster. If it fortune this ouerflowing by the reason of the winde, to continue longe, and their shellefysshe to fayle them: then haue they recours to the fysshebones (which they do of purpose reserue together in heapes) and when thei haue gnabeled of the softest and gristely partes with their tiethe, of those that are newest and beste, they beate the harder with stones into pieces, and eate them. Thei eate as I haue said in the wilde field together abrode, reioicing with a semblaunte of merinesse, and a maner of singyng full vntuned. That done they falle vppon their women, euen as they come to hande withoute any choyse: vtterly voide of care, by reason they are alwaye sure of meate in good plentye.
Thus foure daies euer continual, busied with this bealy bownsing chiere, the v. daie thei flocke together to go drincke, al on a droue, not vnlike to a heard of kiene to the waters, shouting as they go with an Yrishe whobub. And when they haue dronke till their bealies stonde a strutte, so that they are skant able to retourne: euerye bodie layes him downe dronckardelike to reste his water bolne bealy, and that daye eateth nothing. The next daye agayne they fall to their fyshing: And so passe they their lyfe continually.
Thei seldome falle into any diseases, for that they are alway of so vniforme diete. Neuerthelesse they are shorter lyued then we are. Theyr nature not corrupted by any perswasion taken of other, compteth the satisfieng of hongre, the greatest pleasure in the world. As for other extraordenary pleasures, they seke them not. This is the maner of liuing propre vnto them that lye within the bosome of the sayde Arabique sea. But the maner of them that dwell without the bosome, is moche more merueilous. For thei neuer drinke ne neuer are moued with any passion of the mynde. These beynge as it ware by fortune throwen oute into the desertes, farre from the partes miete to be enhabited, giue them selues altogether to fyshing, which they eate haulfe rawe. Not for to auoyde thirste (for they desire no moyste thynges) but rather of a nature sauluage and wilde, contented with such victualle as commeth to hande. They compte it a principall blessednes to be withoute those thinges what so euer they be, that bringe sorowe or griefe to their hauers. Thei are reported to be of such patience, that though a manne strike them with a naked sweard, thei will not shonne him, or flye from him. Beate them, or do theim wronge, and they onely wil looke vppon you, neither shewinge token of wrathe, nor countenaunce of pitie. Thei haue no maner of speache emong them: But onely shewe by signes of the hande, and nodding with the heade, what they lacke, and what they would haue. These people with a whole consent, are mayntayners of peace towarde all men, straunger and other. The whiche maner althoughe it be wondrefull, they haue kept time oute of mynde. Whether throughe longe continuance of custome, or driuen by necessitie, or elles of nature: I cannot saye. They dwell not as the other Icthiophagi doe, all in one maner of cabanes, but sondry in diuers. Some haue their dennes, and their cabanes in them opening to the North: to the ende they might by that meanes be the bettre shadowed fro the sonne, and haue the colder ayre. For those that are open toward the Southe, by the reason of the greate heate of the sonne, caste forthe such a breathe, fornais like, that a manne can not come niere them. They that open towarde the Northe, builde them preaty Cabanes of the ribbes of whales (whiche in those seas they plentuously find) compassing them aboute by the sides, accordynge to their naturall bendinge, and fasteninge them together at bothe endes with some maner of tyenge. Those do they couer with the woose and the wiedes of the sea tempered together. And in these they shroude them selues fro the sonne: nature by necessitie diuising a way how to helpe and defende her selfe.
Thus haue ye hearde the lyfe of the Icthiophagi, and now remaineth there for Aphrique onely the Amazones to be spoken of, which menne saye in the olde tyme dwelte in Libye. A kinde of warlike women, of greate force, and hardinesse, nothing lyke in lyfe vnto our women. The maner amonge them was to appointe to their maidens a certein space of yeres to be trayned, and exercysed in the feictes of warre. Those beynge expired, they ware ioyned to menne for yssues sake. The women bare all the rule of the commune wealthe. The women ware princes, lordes, and officiers, capiteines, and chiefteines of the warres. The menne had noughte to doe, but the drudgery at home, and as the women woulde appoincte them. The children assone as thei ware borne, were deliuered to the men to nouryshe vp with milke, and suche other thinges as their tendrenes required. If it ware a boye, they eyther brake the right arme assone as it was borne, that it mighte neuer be fytte for the warres, or slue it, or sente it oute of the country. If a wenche, they streighte ceared the pappes, that thei might not growe to hindre them in the warres. Therefore the Grecians called theim Amazones, as ye woulde saie, pappelesse. The opinion is, that thei dwelt in the Ilonde named Hespera, which lieth in the marsshe, named (of a riuer that runneth into it) Tritonis, ioyning vpon Ethiope, and the mounte Atlas, the greatest of all that lande. This Ilonde is very large and greate, hauyng plentie of diuers sortes of fruictes, whereby the enhabitauntes liue. Thei haue many flockes of shiepe, and goates, and other small catteile, whose milke and flesshe they eate. They haue no maner of graine, ne knowe what to doe therwith.
Asie, the seconde part of the thre wherin to we haue said that the whole erth is diuided: tooke name as some hold opinion, of the doughter of Oceanus, and Tethis, named Asia, the wife of Iaphetus, and the mother of Prometheus. Or as other affirme, of Asius, the sonne of Maneye the Lidian. And it stretcheth it self from the South, bowtyng25 by the Easte into the Northe: hauyng on the West parte the two flouddes, Nilus and Tanais, and the whole Sea Euxinum, and parte of the middle earth sea. Vpon the other thre quarters, it is lysted in with the Occean, whiche where he cometh by Easte Asie, is called Eous (as ye would saie toward the dawnyng) by the South, Indicus (of the countrie named India) and aftre the name of the stoure Scithiane, vpon the northe Scythicus. The greate mounteine Taurus ronnyng East and West, and in a maner equally partyng the lande in twaine: leaueth one parte on the Northe side, called by the Grekes the outer Asie: and another on the South, named the inner Asie. This mounteine in many places is founde thre hundred lxxv. miles broade: and of length equalle with the whole countrie. About a fiue hundred thre skore and thre miles. From the coast of the Rhodes, vnto the farthest part of Inde, and Scythia Eastwarde. And it is deuided into many sondrie partes, in sondrie wise named, whereof some are larger, some lesse. This Asie is of suche a sise, as aucthorus holde opinion, that Affrike and Europe ioyned together: are scante able to matche it in greatnes. It is of a temperate heate and a fertile soile, and therefore full of all kindes of beaste, foule, and worme, and it hath in it many countries and Seignouries.
On the other side of the redde Sea, ouer against Egipte in Affrike: lieth the tripartite region, named Arabia, whose partes are, Petrea: boundyng West and Northe vpon Siria: and right at fronte before hym Eastwarde, Deserta: and Arabia Felix by Southe. Certein writers also adioyne to Arabia: Pancheia, and Sabea. It is iudged to haue the name of Arabus, the sonne of Apollo and Babilone.
The Arabiens beyng a greate people, and dwellyng very wide and brode: are in their liuyng very diuers, and as sondrie in religion. Thei vse to go with long heare vnrounded and forked cappes, somewhat mitre like, all aftre one sorte, and their beardes partie shauen. Thei vse not as we doe, to learne faculties and sciences one of another by apprenticehode, but looke what trade the father occupied, the same doeth the sonne generally applie himself to, and continue in. The mooste aunciente and eldest father that can be founde in the whole Countrie, is made their Lorde and Kyng. Looke what possessions any one kindrede hath, the same be commune to all those of that bloude: Yea one wife serueth theim all. Wherefore he that cometh firste into the house, laieth doune his falchion before the dore, as a token that the place is occupied. The seniour of the stocke enioieth her alnight Thus be thei all brethren and sistren one to another, throughout the whole people. Thei absteine fro the embrasinges neither of sister ne mother, but all degrees are in that poinct as indifferent to than, as to beastes of the fieldes. Yet is adulterie death emong them. And this is adulterie there: to abandon the bodie to one of another kindred. And who so is by suche an ouerthwarte begotten: is iudged a bastard, and otherwise not. Thei bancquet not lightly together, vndre the nombre of thirtie persones. Alwaie foresene that, two of the same nombre at the leaste, be Musicens. Waiters haue thei none, but one kinsman to minister to another, and one to helpe another. Their tounes and cities are wallesse, for thei liue quietly and in peace one with another. Thei haue no kinde of oyle, but that whiche is made of Sesama, but for all other thynges, thei are most blessed with plentie. They haue Shiepe greater than Kien, and verie white of woulle. Horses haue thei none, ne none desire, for that their Chamelles in al niedes serue them as well. Thei haue siluer and golde plentie, and diuerse kindes of spices, whiche other countries haue not. Laton, Brasse, Iron, Purple, Safron, the precious rote costus, and all coruen woorkes, are brought into theim by other. Thei bewrie their kyng in a donghille, for other thei wille skante take so muche laboure. There is no people that better kiepeth their promise and couenaunt, then thei doe, and thus thei behight it.
When thei wille make any solempne promise, couenaunte, or league, the two parties commyng together, bryng with them a thirde, who standyng in the middes betwixte theim bothe, draweth bloude of eche of them, in the palme of the hande, along vndre the rote of the fingres, with a sharpe stone: and then pluckyng from eche of their garmentes a little iaggue, [A small piece.] he ennoyncteth with that bloude seuen other stones, lyeng ready betwixte theim, for that purpose. And whilest he so doeth, he calleth vpon the name of Dionisius and Vrania, whom thei accompte emong the nombre of goddes, reuengers of faithelesse faithes. This done, he that was the sequestrer of the couenaunte become thsuretie for the parties. And this maner of contracte, he that standeth moste at libertie, thinketh miete to be kepte.
Thei haue no firynge but broken endes and chippes of Myrrhe, whose smoke is so vnwholsome, that excepte thei withstode the malice therof with the perfume of Styrax, it would briede in them vncurable diseases. The Cinamome whiche groweth emong theim, none gather but the priestes. And not thei neither, before thei haue sacrificed vnto the goddes. And yet further thei obserue, that the gatheryng neither beginne before the Sonne risyng, ne continue aftre the goyng doune. He that is lorde and gouernour emong them, when the whole gather is brought together, deuideth out vnto euery man his heape with a Iauelines ende, whiche thei haue ordinarily consecrate for that purpose. And emongest other, the Sonne also hath a heape deuided out for hym, whiche (if the deuision be iuste) he kindeleth immediatly with his owne beames, and brenneth into asshes. Some of the Arabiens that are pinched with penurie, without all regard of body, life, or helth, doe eate Snakes, and Addres, and suche like vermine, and therefore are called of the Grekes Ophyophagi.
The Arabiens named Nomades, occupie much Chamelles, bothe in warre and burden, and all maner cariage, farre and nighe. The floude that ronneth alonge their bordes, hathe in it as it ware limall of golde in great plentie. Whiche they neuertheles for lacke of knowledge do neuer fine into masse.
Another people of Arabia named Deboe, are for the great parte shepemasters, and brieders. Parte of them notwithstanding, occupie husbandrie, and tilthe. These haue suche plentie of gold, that oftetimes emong the cloddes in the fieldes thei finde litle peables of golde as bigge as akecornes, whiche thei vse to set finely with stones, and weare for owches aboute their necke and armes, with a very good grace. They sell their golde vnto their borderers for the thirde parte of Laton, or for the halfe parte of siluer. Partly for that they nothing estieme it, and specially for the desire of the thinges that foreiners haue. Nexte vnto them lie the Sabeis, whose riches chiefely consisteth in encence, Myrrhe and Cinamome, howbeit some holde opinion also that Baulme groweth in some places of their borders. Thei haue also many date trees very redolente of smelle, and the roote called Calamus.
There is in that contry a kinde of serpentes lurking in the rootes of trees, of haulfe a foote lengthe, whose bitinge is for the moste parte death. The plenty of swiete odours, and sauours in those quarters, doeth verely stuffe the smelling. And to avoyde that incommoditie, they oftentimes vse the fume of astincking gomme, and gotes heare chopped together. Ther is no man that hath to do to giue sentence vpon any case but the king. The mooste parte of the Sabeis apply husbandrie. The residewe gatheringe of spices and drugges. They sayle into Ethiope for trade of marchaundise, in barkes couered with leather. The refuse of their cinamome and Cassian they occupy for firing. Their chiefe citie is called Saba, and stondeth vpon a hyll. Their kynges succed by discente of bloude, not any one of the kindred certeine, but suche as the people haue in moste honour, be he good or be he badde. The king neuer dare be sene oute of his Palace, for that there goeth an olde prophecie emong them of a king that shoulde be stoned to deathe of the people. And euery one feareth it shoulde lighte on him selfe. They that are about the king of the Sabeis: haue plate bothe of siluer and golde of all sortest curiously wrought and entallied. Tables, fourmes, trestles of siluer, and all furniture of household sumptuous aboue measure. They haue also Galeries buylte vppon great pillours, whose coronettes are of golde and of siluer. Cielinges voultinges, dores and gates couered with siluer and golde, and set with precious stones: garnisshinges of yuorye, and other rare thinges whiche emong men are of price. And in this bounteous magnificence haue thei continued many yeres. For why the gredy compasse how to atteyne honoure with the vniuste rapine of other mennes goodes, that hath tombled downe headeling so many commune wealthes, neuer had place emong them. In richesse equal vnto them, are the Garrei, whose implementes of household are all of golde and siluer, and of those and yuorie together, are their portalles, their cielinges, and rophes, made. The Nabatheens of all other Arabiens are the beste husbandes, and thriftiest sparers. Their caste is wittye in winning of substaunce, but greater in kepinge it. He that appaireth the substaunce that was lefte him, is by a commune lawe punished: and contrariwise that encreaseth it, muche praysed and honoured.
The Arabiens vse in their warres swerde, bowe, launce, slinge, and battle ax. The rable of helhoundes (whom we calle Sarasines) that pestilent murreine of mankinde, came of this people. And as it is to be thoughte, at this daye the great parte of Arabia is degenerate into that name. But thei that dwell towarde Egipte, kepe yet their olde name, and lyue by butin,26 like prickers of the bordre, wherin, the swiftenes of their camelles doeth them good seruice.
Panchaia (a countrie of Arabia) is iudged of Diodore the Sicilian to be an islonde of xxv. miles brode. It hath in it thre noble cities Dalida, Hyracida, and Oceanida. The whole contrie (excepte a litle vaine of sandie grauelle) is fertile and plenteous: chiefely of wine and encence. Whiche groweth ther in suche aboundaunces that it sufficeth the whole worlde for the francke fume offeringe. There groweth also good store of Myrrhe, and diuers other redolente thinges, whiche the Panqueis gather, and selle to the merchauntes of Arabia. At whose hande other buienge them againe, transports them into Egipte, and Sirie. And fro thence they are spred abrode to all other peoples. The Panqueis in their warres vse wagons aftre the maner of menne in olde time.
Their commune wealth is deuided into thre sundry degrees. The firste place haue the priestes, to whome are ioyned the artificers. The seconde the houseband men. And the thirde the menne of warre: with whom the catteile maisters or brieders be coupled. The priestes are the heades, and chiefe of all the residewe, and haue aucthoritie aswell in sentence of lawe, as to put ordre in al ciuile affaires: the sentence of deaths onely excepted.
The housebandemen, tille the grounde, and attende vpon the fruictes, and bring all into the commune store. And thei that shalbe founde moste diligente in that laboure and occupation: are chosen by the priestes (but not aboue the nombre of ten at one time) to be iudges ouer the distribution of the fruictes. Vpon consideracion that other by their aduancement might be stirred to like diligence. The catteile maisters, yf ther be any thing either apperteining to the sacrifices, or commune affaires, touching nombre, or weight, do it with all diligence,
No man amonge the Panchais hath any thinge that he can call proprely his owne: his house, and his gardein excepted. For bothe the customes, and reuenewes, and all other profectes, are deliuered in to the priestes handes. Who acordinge as they finde necessarie and expediente, iustely distribute them. But they themselues are graunted double share. Their garmentes by the reason of the finesse of the wolle of their shiepe, especially aboue other, are verye softe and gentle clothe. Bothe menne and women vse ther, to sette oute them selues with Iuelles of golde, as cheines, braselettes, eareringes, tablettes, owches, ringes, Annuletes, buttons, broches, and shoes embraudered, and spangled with golde, of diuers colours. The menne of warre serue onely for the defence of their countrey.
The priestes aboue all other, giue them selues vnto pleasaunte life, fine, nette and sumptuous. Their garmentes are rochettes of fine linnen, and sometime of the deintiest wollen. Vpon their heades thei weare mitres embraudred, and garnisshed with golde. They vse a kinde of voided shoes (whiche aftrewarde the Grieques toke vp, and called sandalium) very finely made, and of sondry colours. And as the women weare, so do they, all maner of Iuelles sauing earinges. Their chiefe occupation is to attende vpon goddes seruice, settinge forthe the worthie diedes of the goddes, with himpnes,27 and many kindes of commendacion. Yf thei be founde withoute the halowed grounde, it is lawfull for any manne to slea them. They saye that they came of the bloude of Iupiter Manasses, at suche time as he came firste into Panchaia, hauinge the whole worlde vndre his dominion. This countrie is full of golde, siluer, latton, tinne, and yron, of the whiche it is not laweful to cary any one out of the realme. The giftes both of siluer and golde, whiche in greate nombre of longe time, have bene offred to their goddes, are kepte in the temple: whose dores are by excellent workemanship garnished with golde, siluer and yuorie. The couche of their God is vi. cubites longe, and foure cubites brode, all of golde, gorgeous of worcke, and goodly to beholde. And by that, is there sette a table of like sorte in euery poincte: for sise, stuffe, and gorgeousnes. They haue but one temple, all of white stone, builte vpon pilours, grauen, and embossed, thre hundred and xxxviii. taylours yardes square, that is to saye, euen of lengthe and bredthe, euery waye so muche. And somewhat acordinge to the syse of the temple, it is sette full of highe ymages very precious: coruen and grauen. Rounde about the temple haue the priestes their habitacion. And all the grounde aboute them xxv. myle compasse: is halowed to their goddes. The yerely rente of that grounde is bestowed vpon sacrifice.
As saieth sainct Augustine, the countrie called Assiria, was so named of Assur, the sonne of Sem. And at this daie, to the ende that time might be founde an appairer, of al thinges, with the losse of a sillabe is becomen Siria: Hauyng for his bounde, on the East, the countrie called Inde, and part of Media. On the West the floude Tygris, on the Southe Susiana, and on the Northe the maigne mounteigne Caucasus. It is a deintie to haue in Assiria a showre of raine: and therefore are thei constreined for the due moistyng of their lande, to tolle in the riuers by pollicie of trenching and damming: wherwith thei so plentifie their grounde, that thei communely receiue two hundred busshelles for a busshell, and in some speciall veine, three hundred for one. Their blades of their Wheate and Barlie are fowre fingers brode. Their Sesamum, and Milium (Somer cornes) are in groweth like vnto trees. All the whiche thinges Herodotus the historien, thoughe he knoweth them (as he writeth) to be vndoubtedly true, yet would he that men toke aduisemente in the reportyng of theim: for that thei mighte sieme vnto suche as neuer sawe the like, incredible. Thei haue a tree called Palma, that beareth a kinde of small Dates. This fruicte thei fiede muche vppon, and out of the bodie of the tree, thei draw at one time of the yere a liquor or sappe, wherof thei make bothe wine and hony. In their fresh waters thei vse boates facioned round like a buckler, which the Armenians that dwelle aboue them, do make of salowe wikers wrought one within an other, and couered with rawe leather. The appareile of the Assyrians is a shirte downe to the foote, and ouer that a short garment of wollen, and last of al a faire white pleicted cassaque doun to the foote agayne. Their shoes are not fastened on with lachettes, but lyke a poumpe close about the foote. Which also the Thebans dydde vse, and but they twayne, no moe. They suffre theyr heares to growe and couer them with prety forked cappes somwhat mytrelyke. And when they goe abroade, they besprinkle them selues with fragraunt oyles, to be swete at the smelle. They haue euery man a rynge with a signet, and also a sceptre finely wrought: vppon whose toppe thei vse to sticke either an apple, or a rose, or a lillye, or some lyke thynge. For it is a dishonour to beare it bare.
Emongest all the lawes of that people I note this chiefly as worthie memorie. When their maidens came to be mariageable, thei ware from yere to yere, brought foorthe into the Marquette, for suche as would buye them to be their wiues. And because there ware some so hard fauoured, that menne would not onely be loth to giue money for them, but some menne also for a litle money to take theim: the fairest ware first solde, and with the prices of theim brought into the commune Treasourie, ware the fowler bestowed. Herodote writeth that he heard by reaporte, that the Heneti (a people on the bordre of Italie towarde Illiria) ware wonte to vse this maner. Whervpon Sabellicus takyng an occasion, writeth in this maner. Whether there ware suche a maner vsed emong that people (saieth he) or not, I haue litle more certaintie to laie for my self then Herodote had. But thus muche am I able to saie: that in Venice (a citie of famous worthines, and whose power is well knowen at this date, to be greate, bothe by Sea and by lande) suche maner as I shall saie, was sometyme vsed. There was in the Citie of Venice, a place dedicate, as ye would saie to our Ladie of Pietie. Before whose doores it happened a child or twaine, begotten by a skape (whiche either for shame or necessitie could finde no mother, or for the nombre of parteners, no one propre father) to bee laide. And when by the good Citezeins suche tendrenes had been shewed to two or thre, as the mothers loked for, and manhode (to saie the truthe) doth require: the dore of pitie became so fruictfull a mother, that she had not now one or twoo in a yere, but three or fower in a quarter. Whiche thyng when the gouernours of the citie perceiued, thei toke ordre by commune consente, that from thens foorthe suche women children onely, as should fortune so to bee offred to Pietie, should bee nourisshed at the commune charge of the citie, and none other. And for those accordyngly, thei ordained a place wher thei ware brought vp, hardly kepte in, and diuersely enstructed accordyng to their giftes of witte and capacitie, vntill thei ware mariage able. At the whiche tyme, she that had beautie and good qualities bothe, found those a sufficient dowrie to purchase her choyse of husbandes. And she that hadde but beautie alone, thoughe her qualities ware not so excellente, yet for her honestie that beside forth was singuler in theim all, founde that beautie and honestie could not be vnmaried. These therefore ware not permitted to euery mannes choise, but graunted to suche as ware thoughte menne worthie of suche women. If there ware any that lacked the grace of beautie, yet if she ware wittie, and endewed with qualities (together with her honestie) a small dowrie purchased her a husband in good time. But if there ware any in whom there happened neither commendacion of beautie nor wit, but onely bare honestie: for her bestowyng was there a meane found, by waie of deuocion, as we terme it when we signifie a respecte of holines in the diede.
Menne vnmarried beyng in daungier vpon Sea or on Lande, or beyng sore distressed with sickenes, makyng a vowe for the recouerie of healthe, where vnto thei holde them selues bounden in conscience (if it fortuned theim at that tyme to be deliuered) for satisfaction of their vowe in that case not vprightly perfourmed, vsed to take for their wiues, suche of the simplest as other had left. So that in processe they alwaie founde husbandes, and the commune wealthe a diminishyng of charge.
Another Lawe of the Babilonians there was, more worthie of memorie a greate deale, for that it imported more weight. And that was this. Thei had from their beginnyng no Phisicens emong theim, but it was enacted by the consente of the Realme, that who so was diseased of any malady, should comon with other that had bene healed of the like afore. And acordyng to their counsaile, practise vpon himself. But he that vsed or attempted any other waie, to be punished for it. Other write that the sicke ware brought out into the Marquet place, where suche as had bene deliuered of the like grief afore: ware bounde by the lawe, to go fro persone to persone, and shewe theim by what meanes thei had bene remedied.
Thei bewrie their dead in Honie, and obserue the same maner of mournyng that the Egiptians do. If any man haue medled with his wife in the nighte, neither of theim bothe toucheth any thyng the next mornyng, before thei be washed:
There was in Babilon a Temple dedicate to Venus, and it hath bene the maner in tyme paste, that when their came any straunger to visite this Temple, all the women of Babilon should come vnto him or them, with greate solempnitie and fresshely appareiled, euery one hauing a garlande on her heade, with some seueralle knowledge of distinction one from another, and offre their seruice to the straungier. And looke whom he liked, he must laie doune in her lappe, suche somme of money as pleased him. That done thei bothe withdrew themselues fro the temple a greate distaunce, and laie together. That money was consecrate to Venus.
There were certein kindredes emong theim, that liued with none other thyng but fisshe dried against the Sonne, and brused in a Mortare, and so laied vp till niede ware. And then did thei mingle it, and kneade it with water into a maner of paaste, and so baked it, and eate it. There ware thre sortes of menne that bare rule and office emong them. The king, the nobles with the Seniours, and those that had serued in the warres and ware now exempte. Thei had also menne skilfull in the secretes of nature, whiche thei calle Magi, and Chaldei, suche as ware the priestes of Egipte, institute to attende vpon the seruice of their Goddes. These men all their life daies, liued in the loue of wisedome, and were connyng in the cours of the Sterres. And sometyme by foretokenyng of birdes flight and somtyme by power of holy verses and nombres tourned awaie the euilles fro menne, and benefited them with thinges that ware good. Thei could expounde Dreames, and declare the significacions of vncouth wondres. So that men ware certein of suche successe, as thei had foreshewed. Thei wente not into straunge scholes to learne their knowledge, as the Grecians doe, but learned the science of these thynges at their fathers handes, as heirtage from one generation to another, euen from their childhode at home in their houses. Whereby it came to passe that beyng sokingly learned, it was bothe the more groundedly learned, and also without tediousnes. Thei had one vniforme and constaunt waie of teaching, and one constantnes of doctrine, not waueryng and almoste contrary to it self, as the doctrine of the Greekes: where eche Philosopher almoste had his waie, and iudgemente, of the principles and causes of thynges. But these menne agre al in one, that the worlde is eternall and euerlastyng, with out begynnyng and without ende. And that the ordre of the whole, was disposed by the prouidence of the highest. The bodies aboue to haue their course, not at all aduentures and without rule, but by an inuiolable lawe of God, acordyng to his ordenaunce and will moste certein. Thei haue learned by long markyng and notyng of thynges tyme out of mynde, one aftre another: how by the course of the Starres, to prognostique, that is to foreshewe vnto men, many thynges to come. Thei holde that of all other Sterres, the planetes are strongest of Influence, namely Saturnus. To the sonne thei attribute brightnes and vertue of life. Mars, Iupiter, Mercurie, and Venus, thei obserue moste,(for that thei haue a course propre by themselues) as interpretours of the mindes of the goddes to foresignifie thinges vnto men. Which opinion is so grounded in them, that they haue called all those foure planetes, by the one name of Mercurius, as ye woulde saye commune currours or messengers. Thei also do warne menne of many thinges, bothe hurtefull and availeable: by the marking, and knowledge of winde and weather, of raine and droughte, of blasing sterres, of the eclipses of the Sonne and Mone, of earthquakes, and manye suche like.
Furthermore thei ymagine in the firmament other sterres, subiecte in influence vnto these former, wherof some are in the haulfe heauen continually in our sighte, and some in the other haulfe continually oute of our sight And as the Egiptiens haue feigned them selues xii. goddes, so likewyse haue thei. To euerie of the whiche they referre one moneth, and one signe of the Zodiaque. Thei haue prophecied vnto kinges, many aduentures. As vnto Alexandre victory, when he made his exploicte towarde Darius. Likewise to Hirchanour and Seleucus, and other the successours of Alexandre, prophecied thei many thinges: As also to the Romaines, which had most sure successe. Thei make compte also of xxiiij. other starres: without, and beside the waie of the zodiaque, xii. towarde the Northe, and the residewe towarde the Southe. Of the whiche, so many as appiere in sight, they iudge to apperteigne to the quicke, and the other to the dead. These troublesome mases haue thei broughte into the worlde more then enoughe, beside the accompte that thei make of their obseruacions and deuinacions from their beginninge to Alexandras time: nombringe them thre thousande and fourty yeres (a shamefull lie) excepte thei will entreprete their yeres by the Mone, as the Egiptians doe, comptinge euery monethe for a yere.
Palestina, whiche also is named Iudea, beinge a seueralle prouince of Siria; lieth betwixte Arabia Petrea, and the countrie Coelosiria. So bordering vpon the Egiptian sea on the West, and vpon the floude Iordon on the Easte, that the one with his waues wassheth his clieues, and the other sometime with his streame ouerfloweth his banckes.
The Bible, and Iosephus by ensample therof called this londe Cananea: a countrie renowned for manifolde substaunce. Fertile of soyle, well watered with riuers, and springes, and rich with precious balme. Lienge in the nauelle of the world, that it neither might be broyled with heate, ne frosen with colde. By the reason of the which mildenes of aier, it was iudged by the Israelites or Hebrues, (and rightlye so iudged) to be the country that God promised vnto Abraham, Isaac, and Iacob, flowinge in aboundaunce of milke and honie. Vpon the hope of enioyinge of this londe, folowed they Moses oute of Egipte fortye yeres wandering in Campe. And before thei ware broughte into Cananea by Iosua, his substitute, ouercame with strong hande, one and thirty kinges.
This is the people that onely of all other may chalenge the honour of auncientie. This is the people alone the mighte haue glorified in the wisedome, and vnmedled puritie of Language, as beinge of all other the firste. This is the people that was mother of lettres, and sciences. Amonge these remained the knowledge of the onely and euerliuinge God, and the certeintie of the religion that was pleasaunte in his eies. Among these was the knowledge, and foreknowledge of al, sauinge that Helas, they knewe not the visitour of their wealthe and the ende of their wo, Iesus the sauioure of all that woulde knowe him, and sieke life in his deathe. But him whome thei knew not, when by reason thei should: him shal thei yet ones knowe in time when the father woulde.
The Israelites, the Hebrues or the Iewes (for all in effecte soundeth one people) liue aftre the rule of the lawes, whiche Moses their worthy duke, and deuine chiefteine, declared vnto theim. Withoute the whiche also or anye other written, thei liued holily, hundred of yeares before: atteininge to the truthes hidden from other, by a singuler gifte aboue other. That Philosophre of Philosophers, and deuine of deuines, Moses the marueilous, waienge in his insight, that no multitude assembled, coulde be gouerned to continuaunce without ordres of equitie and lawes: when with rewardes to the good, and reuenge vpon the euill, he had sufficiently exhorted, and trained his people to the desire of vertue, and the hate of the contrarie: at the last beside the two tables receiued in the mounte Sinah, added ordres of discipline, and ciuile gouernaunce, full of all goodlines and equitie. Whiche Iosephus, the Iewe, (a manne of greate knowledge, and eloquence, aswel in the Hebrewe, his natural tongue, as in the Grieke, amonge whome he liued in notable fame not a fewe yeres) hath gathered, and framed into one seuerall treatise. Out of the which, because I rather fansie, if I maye with like commoditie, to folowe the founteines of the first Authours, then the brokes28 of abredgers, which often bring with them much puddle: I haue here translated, and annexed to the ende of this booke, those ordres of the Iewes commune welthe, sendyng the for the reste to the Bible. And yet notwithstanding, loke what I founde in this Abredger, neither mencioned in the bible, nor in that treatise, the same thus ordrely foloweth.
The heathen writers, and the Christianes, do muche diffre concerninge the Iewes, and Moyses their chiefteine. For Cornelius the stylle29 in his firste booke of his yerely exploictes, called in Latine Annales, dothe not ascribe their departure oute of Egipte to the power and commaundement of God: but vnto necessitie, and constrainte, with these wordes:
A great skuruines, and an yche saieth he, beinge risen throughe oute Egipte, Bocchoris, the king sekynge remedye in the Temple of Iupiter Hammon, was willed by responcion to clense his kingdome: And to sende awaye that kinde of people whom the goddes hated (he meaneth the Iewes) into some other contrey. The whiche when he had done, and they (as the poompe of al skuruines, not knowing wher to become) laye cowring vndre hedges, and busshes, in places desert, and many of them dropped away, for sorowe and disease: Moyses (whiche also was one of the outecastes, saieth be) counselled them not to sitte ther, awayting aftre the helpe of God or of man, whiche thei ware not like to haue: but to folowe him as their capteine, and lodesman, and committe them selues vnto his gouernaunce. And that hervnto thei all agreinge, at wilde aduentures, withoute knowing what thei did, tooke their iorney. In the which thei ware sore troubled, and harde bestadde,30 for lacke of water. In this distresse, when thei ware now ready to lye them downe, and die for thirst, Moyses espienge a great heard of wilde Chamelles comming fro their fiedinge, and going into woddie place ther beside, folowed them. And iudginge the place not to be without watre, for that he sawe it fresshe and grene, digged and founde plenty of watre. Wherwith when thei had releued themselues, thei passed on. vi. daies iourney: and so exployted that the seuenth daye thei where thei builte their Citie, and their temple. Moyses had beaten out all the enhabitauntes of the contry, then to the entent he might satle the peoples hartes towarde him for euer: deuised them newe ordres, and ceremonies cleane contrary to all other nacions. For (saieth Cornelius) Looke what so euer is holy amonge vs, the same is amonge them the contrary. And what so euer to vs is vnlawfulle, that same is compted lawefull amonge theim. The ymage of the beaste that shewed them the waye to the waters, and the ende of their wanderinge: did they set vp in their chambres, and offre vnto it a rambe, in the despight of Iupiter Hammon, whom we worship in the fourme of a Rambe. And because the Egiptians worshippe their goddesse Apis in the fourme of a cowe, therforethei vse to slea also in sacrifice a cowe. Swines flesshe thei eate none, for that thei holde opinion that this kynde of beaste, of it selfe beinge disposed to be skoruie, mighte be occasion againe to enfecte them of newe. The seuenth daye thei make holy day. That, is to say spende awaie in ydlenes and rest: for that on the seuenth daye, they founde reste of theyr wandering, and misery. And when they had caughte a sauour in this holye daye loytering: it came to passein processe of tyme, that thei made a longe holydaye also of the whole seuenth yere: But other holde opinion that thei do obserue suche maner of holyedaies, in the honour of Saturne the god of fasting and famine: with whose whippe thei are lothe againe to be punisshed. Their breade is vnleauened. These ceremonies and deuises, by what meanes so euer thei ware brought in amonge them, thei do stiffely defende. As thei are naturally giuen, to be stiffe in beliefe, and depe in loue with their owne althoughe towarde alother thei be most hatefull enemies. So that theineither will eate ne drincke with them: no nor lye in the chambre that a straunger of a nother nacion lyeth in. A people altogether giuen vnto leachery, and yet absteining from the enbrasinges of the straunger. Emong them selues thei iudge nothinge vnlawfull. Thei deuised to rounde of the foreskinne of their yarde (whiche we call circumcision) because thei would haue a notable knowledge betwene them, and other nacions. And the firste lesson thei teache vnto their children, is to despise the goddes. The soules of those that die in tormentes, or in warre, thei iudge to be immortall. A continuall feare haue thei, and a regard of heauen and helle. And where the Egiptians honour many similitudes and Images of beastes, and other creatures, whiche thei make themselues: the Iewes onely doe honour with their spirite and minde, and conceiue in their vndrestandyng, but one onely Godheade. Iudging all other that worshippe the Images of creatures, or of manne: to bee vngodlie and wicked. These and many other thinges doth Cornelius write, and Trogus also in his xxxvi. booke.
There ware amonge the Iewes thre seueralle sectes, differyng in life from the reast of the people. The Phariseis, the Sadduceis, and the Esseis. The Phariseis vsed a certeine rough solempnesse of appareille, and a very skante fare: determinyng the Tradicions of Moyses, by certein ordenaunces and decrees, whiche they themselues sette vp. Thei caried vpon their foreheades, and on their lefte armes pretie billettes of Paper, facioned for the place, wherein ware written the tenne preceptes of the two Tables. And this did thei for that the Lorde saieth: And these shall thou haue (meanyng the commaundements) as a remembraunce hanging before thine eyes, and alwaie ready at thine hande. These were called their Philacteries, of these two woordes Phylexi and Thorat, wherof the former signifieth to Kiepe, and the other, the Lawe. These menne also hauyng vppon their skirtes muche broder gardes then other, stacke them full of Thornes, whiche beatyng and prickyng them on the hieles as thei wente, might putte them in remembraunce of the commaundementes of God. Thei attributed all thynges vnto God, and destenie, which they call Emarmeni. Neuertheles thei graunted, that it laie muche in the free choise of manne: either to doe, or not to doe the thinges that are iust and godlie, but yet destenie to helpe in al cases. Whiche destenie thei thought to depende of the influence of the bodies aboue. Looke what their superiors and Elders had saied, or answered to any demaunde, thei neuer would contrarie it. Thei belieued that GOD should come to Iudge the worlde, and that all soules ware euerlastyng. And as for the soules of the good, thei helde opinion, that thei passed from one bodie to another, vntill the daie of the generall resurrection. But the soules of the wicked, to be plonged into euerlasting prison and dongeon. The name of Pharisei was giuen vnto them for that thei ware disguised fro the commune maner of other, as ye would saie, Sequestred.
The Sadduceis denied that there was any destenie, but that God was the beholder of all, and that it laie in the choise of manne, to do well or euill. And as for ioye or sorowe that the soule should suffre aftre this life, thei denied. Neither belieued thei any resurrection: because thei thoughte the soule died with the bodie. Thei would not belieue that there ware any spirites, good or bad. Neither would thei receiue more of the Bible, then the fiue bookes of Moses. Thei ware sterne men, and vncompaignable: not so muche as ones kepyng felowshippe one with another. For the whiche sternesse, thei named theim selues Sadduceis, that is to saie iuste menne.
The Esseis ware in all pointes verie like vnto our cloisterers, abhorryng mariage and the companie of women. Not for that thei condempned Mariage, or the procreation of issue, but for that thei iudged a manne ought to be ware of the intemperauncie of women. And that no woman kept herself true to her husbande. Oh shameful opinion, and muche better to be reported by the dead, then to be credited of the quicke, bee it neuer so true. Thei possessed all thinges in commune. As for checkes or reuilings, was to them muske and honie, and slouenly vndaftinesse, a great comelinesse. So that thei ware alwaie in a white surcote, all was well. Thei had no certein abiding in any one citie: but Celles ouer all, where so euer thei became. Before the risyng of the Sonne, they spake nothyng that touched any worldly affair: but praied the Sonne to rise. After whose vprijste thei laboured vntill eleuen of the clocke. And then, washyng firste their whole bodie in water: thei satte doune together to meate, in solempne silence euery manne. Swearing they compted forswearyng. Thei admitted no manne to their secte, vndre a yere of probation. And aftre what time thei had receiued him: yet had thei two yeres more to proue his maners and condicions. Suche as thei tooke with a faulte, thei draue fro their compaignie. Enioyned by the waie of penaunce, to go a grasing like a beast, vntill his dieng daie. When tenne ware sette in a companie together, no one of them spake without the consente of the other nyne. Thei woulde not spitte within the precincte of the compaignie emong theim, ne yeat on their righte side. They kept the Sabboth with suche a precisenesse, that thei would not that daie, ease nature of the belie burden. And when vpon other daies, nature forced theim to that easemente, thei caried with theim a litle spade of woode, wherewith in place most secreate, thei vsed to digge a litle pit, to laie their bealie in. And in the time of doyng, thei also vsed a very greate circumspection, that their clothes laie close to the grounde rounde aboute theim, for offending (saied thei) of the Maiestie of God. Vpon whiche respecte, thei also couered and bewried it, assone as thei had done that nature required. Thei ware of verie long life, by the reason of the vnifourme diete that thei vsed, alwaie aftre one rate of fare: whiche was onely the fruicte of their countrie Balme. Thei occupied no money. If any manne suffered for wel doyng, or as wrongfully condempned, that thoughte thei the beste kinde of death. Thei helde opinion that all soules ware made in the beginnyng, and put in to bodies from tyme to tyme, as bodies did niede them. And for the good soules beyng ridde of their bodies againe, thei saied there was a place appointed beyond the Weast Occean, where thei take repose. But for the euill, thei appoincted places toward the East, as, more stormie colde and vnpleasante. Ther ware amonge them that prophecied thinges. Some of them gaue themselues to wedlocke: least if they shoulde be of the oppinion that men oughte to absteine vttrely from women, mankinde shoulde fade, and in processe be extincte, yeat vsed thei the compaignie of their wiues nothing at riote.
The lande of Siria (whereof we haue named Iewrie a parte) is at this daie enhabited of the Grekes, called Griphones, of the Iacobites, Nestorians, Sarracenes, and of two Christian nations, the Sirians and Marouines. The Sirians vse the saie Masse, aftre the maner of the Grekes: and for a space ware subiecte to the churche of Rome.
The Marouines agree in opinion with the Iacobites. Their lettres and tongue are al one with the Arabique. These Christianes dwelle at the Mounte Libanus. The Sarracenes, whiche dwelle aboute Ierusalem (a people valeaunt in warre) delight muche in housbondrie and tilthe. But contrary wise, thei that enhabite Siria, in that poincte are nothing worth. The Marouines are fewe in nombre, but of all other thei are the hardieste.
Media (a countrie of Asia) as Solinus writeth, toke the name of one Medus, the sonne of Medea and Egeus, kyng of Athenes. Of whom the people ware also called Medes. But Iosephus affirmeth that it was so named of Medius the sonne of Iapheth. This countrie, as it is sene in Ptolomie, hath on the Northe, the sea named Hircanum, on the West Armenia, and Assiria, on the Southe Persie, and on theast Hircania and Parthia. Sauing that betwixte Parthia and it, there ronneth a mounteigne, that separateth their frontiers. The feactes that thei mooste exercise, are shooting and ridyng. Wherein thei be righte experte, and almoste (for those quartres) without matche or felowe. It hathe bene there a longe continued and aunciente custome, to honour their kynges like goddes. The rounde cappe, whiche thei cal Tiara: and their long slieued garmentes, passed from them to the Persians, together with the Empire. It was a peculier maner vsed of the Kynges of the Medes, to haue many wiues. Which thyng was aftrewarde also taken by of the communes: so that at lengthe it was thought vnmiete to haue feawer wiues then seuen. It was also a goodlie thyng for a woman to haue many husbandes: and to be without fiue at ones, was compted a miserable state. The Medes entre leagues and couenauntes, both aftre the maner of the Grekes, and also with drawing bloud vpon some parte of the arme aboute the shouldre, one of another, whiche thei vse to licke eche of others body. All that parte of the countrey that lieth towarde the Northe, is barrein and vnfruictefulle. Wherefore thei vse to make store of their fruicte, and to drie them, and so to worke them into a masse, or lumpe for their foode. Of rosted Almondes thei make their breade: and their wine of the rootes of certein herbes. Thei eate great plentie of the fleshe of wilde beastes.
A Certeine nombre of Outlawes and Banisshed menne, called Parthie, gaue name to this Countrie: Aftre suche time as by train, and stealth thei had gotten it. On the Southe it hath Carmania, on the North Hircanum, on the Weast The Meades, and on the Easte the country of Arabia. The countrie is hilly, and full of woddes, and of a barreine soyle. And a people which in the time of the Assiriens, and Medes, were scante known and litle estiemed. In so moche that when that highe gouernaunce of the whole (whiche the Grekes call the Monarchie) was yelde into the handes of the Persians: thei ware made a butin, as a nombre of raskalles without name. Laste of all thei ware slaues to the Macedonies. But afterward in processe of time, suche was the valeauntenes of this people and suche successe had thei: that thei became lordes, not ouer their neighbours onely rounde about theim, but also helde the Romaines (the conquerours of the worlde) suche tacke, that in sondrie warres they gaue them great ouerthrowes, and notablye endamaged their power. Pliny reherseth xiiii. kingdomes of the Parthians. Trogus calleth them Emperors of the East part of the worlde, Asthoughe they, and the Romaines holding the Weste, had deuided the whole betwixte them.
Aftre the decay of the Monarchie of the Macedonians, this people was ruled by kinges. Whome generally by the name of the first king, thei termed Arsaces. Nexte vnto the kinges maiestie, the communaltie bare the swaye. Oute of whome they chase bothe their Capteignes for the warres, and their gouernours for the peace time. Their language is a speache mixte of the Scithians and Medes. Their appareil at the firste, was aftre their facion vnlike to all other. But when thei grewe vnto power, louse and large, and so thinne: that a man mighte see thoroughe it, aftre the facion of the Medes. Their maner of weapon, and armour, was the same that the Scithians vsed. But their armies ware altogether almoste of slaues and bondemen, contrary to the maner of other peoples. And for that no manne hath aucthoritie amonge them to giue fredome vnto anye of this bonde ofspring: The nombre of them by continuance, came vnto a greate multitude. These do thei bringe vp, and make of as deerly, as thei do of their owne children: teachinge them to ride, to shote, to throwe the darte, and suche like feates, with great diligence and handsomenes. Eche communer ther, acording to his substaunce, findeth a greate nombre of these to serve the kinge on horsebacke, in all warres. So that at what time Anthonie the Romaine made warre vpon the Parthians, wher thei mette him with fyftie thousande horsemen: there ware of the whole nombre but eyghte hundred fre borne. They are not skylfull to fighte it oute at hande stripes, ne yeat in the maner of besieging or assaulting: but all together aftre the maner of skirmisshe as they spie their aduantage. Thei vse no trompet for their warninges or onsettes but a dromme: neither are thei able to endure long in their fighte. For yf they ware so good in continuaunce, as thei be violente at a brunte: ther ware no multitude able to susteine their force. For the moste parte thei breake of, when the skirmishe is euen at the whottest. And within a while aftre thei feigne a flight, wher with thei beginne againe a newe onsette. So when thou thinckest thy selfe mooste sure of the honour of the fielde, then arte thou at the poinct of the hardest hazarde. Their horsmen vse armour of mayle entrelaced with fethers: bothe for their owne defence, and the defence also of their horses. In times passed thei occupied no golde ne siluer, but only in their armour. Vpon regarde of chaunge in their luste, thei mary echeone many wiues, and yet punishe thei none offence so greuously as adultery. For the auoyding whereof thei doe not onely forbidde their women by generall restrainte from all feastes, and banckettinges of men: but also from the sighte of them. Some neuerthelesse do wrighte, amonge the whiche Strabo is one, that thei vse to giue their wiues sometime to their friendes, as in the waye of mariage, that thei maye so haue issue. Thei eate none other fleshe but suche as thei kylle at the chace. Thei be euer on horsebacke, whether thei go to the fielde or the banket, to bye, to selle, to commune of aughte with their friende, or to do any thing that is to be done. Yea thei dispatche al commune and priuate affaires, sittinge on horsebacke. And this is to be vnderstonden of the fre borne: for the slaues are alwaies on foote. Their buriall for all menne (sauinge the kinge) is the dogges bealy, and the kytes. But when thei or suche like haue eaten of, the fleshe, then couer thei the bare bones with earth. Thei haue great regarde vnto their goddes, and the worship due vnto them. Thei are men of a proude nature, busie medlers, and sedicious, craftie, deceiptfull, malaparte, and vnshamefaced: for thei holde opinion that it becometh the man as well to be Sterne, as the woman to be milde. Thei be euer in some stirre, either with their neighbours, or elles amonge themselues. Men of fewe wordes, and readier to doe, then to saye. And therefore whether it go with them or against them, thei lappe it vp in scilence. Thei obey not their superiours for any reuerence, but for feare. Altogether giuen to lechery, and yet skante in fiedinge. No farther trewe of worde or promesse, then semeth them expediente for their owne behoue.
Persia (a countrie of the Easte) was so called of Persius the Sonne of Iupiter and Danæ. Of whome the chiefe citie of the kingdome also, was named Persepolis, whiche in Englishe soundeth Perseboroughe (or as we corruptly terme it) Perseburie, and the whole nation Persiens. This countrie as Ptolemie writeth in his fiueth booke, hath on the Northe, Media: on the West, Susiana: on the Easte, the two Carmaniæs: and on the Southe, an inshot of the Sea, called the Bosome of Parthia. The famous cities thereof, were Axiama Persepolis and Diospolis. By the name of Iupiter thei vnderstode the whole heauen. Thei chiefely honour the Sonne, whom the calle Mitra. Thei worship also the Mone, the planet Venus, the fyre, the earthe, the water, and the windes. Thei neither haue aultare nor temple, nor ymage, but celebrate their deuine seruice vndre the open heauen vpon some highe place for that purpose appoincted. In doinge sacrifice thei haue no farther respecte, but to take awaye the life from the beaste. As hauing opinion, that forasmuche as the goddes be spirites, thei delighte in nothinge but the spiritual parte, the soule. Before thei slea it, thei set it aparte by them, with a corone upon the heade, and heape vppon it many bittre banninges and curses. Some of the nacion notwithstandinge, when thei haue slaine the beaste: vse to lay parte of the offalle in the fire.
When thei sacrifie vnto the fire, they timbre vp drie stickes together, cleane without pille or barcke. And after what time they haue powred on neates tallowe, and oyle, thei kindle it. Not blowing with blaste of blowesse or mouthe: but makinge winde as it ware with a ventile, or trenchour, or suche like thinge. For yf any manne either blow into it, or caste in any deade thing, or any durte, or puddle, it is deathe to the doer. The Persians beare suche reuerence to their floudes, that thei neither wasshe, pysse, nor throwe deade carcase into them. No not so moche as spitte into them: But very reuerentlye honour their water after this maner. Comminge to lake, mere, floude, ponde, or springe: thei trenche out a litle diche, and ther cot thei the throte of the sacryfice. Being well ware, that no droppe of blode sprinckle into the water by. As thoughe all water ware polluted and vnhalowed ouer all: yf that should happen. That done their Magi (that is to say men skylful in the secretes of nature) layeng the flesh vppon a heape of Myrtus, or Laurelle, and tymbryng smalle wandes about, sette fyre thereon and brenne yt. And pronouncyng certein curses, they myngle oyle, mylke, and hony together, and sprinkle into the fyre. But these cursinges make they not against the fyre ne water. But against the earthe, a greate whyle toguether: holding in their hande a boundle of smalle myrte wandes. Their kinges reigne by succession of one kindred or stocke. To whom who so obeyeth not, hath his heade and armes striken of: and so wythout buriall is throwen out for karreine. Policritus sheweth that euery king of the Persians, buyldeth his howse vpon a greate hille: and ther hourdeth vp all the threasure, tribute, and taxe that he receyueth of the people: to be a recorde aftre his deathe how good a husbonde he hath bene for the commune wealthe. Suche of the subiectes as dwelle vpon the sea coast, are taxed to paie money. But those that inhabite toward the mydde londe: suche commodities as the quarter beareth or hath wher they dwelle. As apothecary druggues, woolle, coulours, and suche like and cateille accordingly. He is not permitted any one cause, to putte any man to death. Neither is it lawfull for any other of the Persians to execute any thyng against any of his house or stock, that maie sieme in any wyse cruelle. Euery one of them marie many wiues: and holde many concubines also beside, for the encrease of issue.
The king Proclaimeth rewarde vnto him, that within one yere begetteth most children. Fiue yere aftre thei are begotten, thei come not in the fathers sight, by a certein ordenaunce vsed emong theim: but are broughte vp continually emong the women: To the ende that if the childe fortune to dye in the time of his infancie, their fathers grief maie be the lesse. Thei vse not to marie but in one tyme of the yere: toward midde Marche. The bridegrome eateth to his supper, an apple of that countrey, or a litle of the maribone of a Chamel: and so without any farther banquetting goeth to bedde. From fiue yeres olde, to twentie and fowre, thei learne to ride, to throwe the Darte, to shoote, and chiefly to haue a tongue voide of all vntruthe. For their nourituryng and trainyng in good maners, thei haue appoincted theim Masters of greate sobrenes and vertue, that teache them dieties, and pretie songes, conteinyng either the praises of their Goddes, or of some worthy Princes. Whiche sometime thei sing, and sometyme recite without note: that so they mighte learne to confourme their liues vnto theirs, whose praises thei sieme themselues to allowe. To this lesson assemble thei alwaie together, at the calle of a Trompette. And as thei growe into yeres, an accompt is required of them how well thei haue borne awaie the lessons of their childhode. Thei vse to ronne the race, and to course, bothe on horsebacke and on foote: at the leadyng of some noble mannes sonne, chosen for the nones. The field for the race, is at least thre mile and thre quarters longe. And to the ende that heate or colde should the lesse trouble them, they vse to wade ouer brookes, and swimme ouer riuers, and so to rowme and to hunte the fieldes, and to eate and drinke in their armour, and wette clothes. The fruyctes that eate are akecornes, wild Peares, and the fruicte of the Terebinthine tree. But their daiely foode aftre their ronnyng, and other exercises of the bodie: is hard Bisquette, or a like crustie breade, Hortechocques, Gromelle sede, a litle roste flesshe or soden, whether thei lust: and faire water their drincke. Their maner of Huntyng, is with the bowe, or the Darte on horse backe. Thei are good also in the slynge. In theforenoone thei plante and graffe, digge vp settes, stubbe vp rootes, make their owne armour, or fisshe and foule, with the Angle or nette. Their children are decked with garnishynges of golde. And their chief iuelle is the precious stone Piropus, whiche thei haue in suche price, that it maie come vppon no deade corps. And that honour giue thei also to the fire, for the reuerence thei beare there vnto. From twentie, till fiuetie: thei folowe the warres. As for byeng and sellyng, or any kinde of Lawe prattle, thei vse not. Thei cary in their warres, a kind of shieldes facioned like a losenge, a quiure with shaftes, and a curtilace. On their heades a copintanke, embatled aboute like a turrette, and a brestplate emboussed, of skaled woorke. The princes and menne of honour did weare a treble Anaxirides, facioned muche like a coate armour, and a long coate doune to the knees, with hangyng slieues acordyng. The outside colours, but the lining white. In Somer thei weare purple, and in Wintre Medleis. The abillementes of their heades, are muche like the frontlettes that their Magj doe weare. The commune people are double coated doune to the midde Leggue, and haue about their heade a great rolle of Sendalle. Their beddes and their drinking vessell, are garnished with gold. When they haue matier of moste importaunce to common of, thei debate and conclude in the middes of their cuppes: thinkyng it muche surer that is so determined, then aftre any other sobrer sorte. Acqueintaunce mieting of equall degre, griete one another with a kisse. But the inferiour mietyng with his bettre, enclineth his bodie foreward with lowe reuerence. Thei bewrie their corpses in the grounde, cearyng them all ouer with waxe. Their Magicens thei leaue vnbewried, for the foules to disspetche. The children there, by an ordenaunce no where elles vsed: doe carnally knowe their mothers. Thus have ye heard what the maners of the Persians ware sometyme.
Herodotus reherseth certeine other, their facions not vtterly vnworthe the tellynge. That thei compted it vilanie to laughe, or to spitte before the kyng. Thei thought it fondenes in the Grekes, worthie to be laughed at, to imagine goddes to be sprong vp of menne. What so euer was dishoneste to be done, that thoughte thei not honeste to be spoken. To be in debte was muche dishonour, but of all thinges moste vile for to lie. Thei vse not to bewrie their deade bodies, vntill thei haue bene torne with dogges, or with fowles. And the parentes brought to niedinesses vse there to make cheuisaunce of their doughters bodies, which emong no nation elles was euer allowed. Howbeit some holde opinion, that it was also the propretie of the Babilonians. The Persians at this daie, beynge subdued of the Saracenes, and bewitched with Mahometes brainsicke wickednesse, are cleane out of memorie. A people in those daies, whiche through their greate hardinesse and force, ware of long tyme Lordes of the Easte parte of the worlde. But now tombled cleane from their aunciente renowne, and bewried in dishonour.
Ynde, a Countrie also of the Easte, and the closyng vp of Asia toward that quartre: is saied to be of suche a maigne syse, that it maie be compared with the thirde parte of the whole earth. Pomponius writeth, that alonge the shore, it is fowrtie daies sailyng the nighte also comprised therein.
It tooke the name of the floude called Indus, whiche closeth vp the lande on the Weste side. Beginnyng at the Southe sea, it stretcheth to the Sonnerisynge: And Northward to the mount Caucasus. There are in it many greate peoples: and Tounes and Cities so thicke, that some haue reported them in nombre fiue thousande. And to saie truthe, it ought not to sieme greatly straunge vnto folkes, though the countrie be reported to haue suche a nombre of Tounes, or to be so populous: consideryng that of all other, the Yndiens alone, neuer discharged theim selues of any ouerplus of issue, as other haue done: but alwaie kepte their owne offspryng at home in their owne countrie. Their principall floudes are Ganges, Indus, and Hypanis. But Ganges farre passeth in greatnes the other twaine. This lande by the benefite of the battling breathe of the gentle Weast winde, reapeth corne twise in the yere. And other Wintre hath it none, but the bittre blastes of Theasterly windes called Etesiæ. Thei lacke wine, and yet some men reporte, that in the quartre called Musica, there groweth a good wine grape. In the Southe parte thereof, groweth Nardus, Cinnamome, Peper and Calamus aromaticus: as doeth in Arabia and Aethiope. The woode Ebenum (which some suppose to be our Guayacum) groweth there, and not elles where. Likewise of the Popiniaye and the Vnicorne. As for precious stones, Beralle, Prasnes, Diamantes, firie Carbuncles and Pearles of all sortes, be founde there in greate plentie. They haue twoo Sommers, softe pimpelyng windes, a milde aier, a rancke soile, and abundaunce of watre. Diuerse of them therefore liue an hundred and thirtie yeres. Namely emong the Musicanes. And emong the Serites, yet somewhat longer.
All the Yndians generally, weare long heare: died either aftre a bright asshe coulour, or elles an Orenge tawnie. Their chief ieuelles, are of Pearle and precious stones. Their appareille is verie diuers: and in fewe, one like another. Some go in Mantles of Wollen, some of Linnen some naked, some onely brieched to couuer the priuities, and some wrapped aboute with pilles, and lithe barckes of trees. Thei are all by nature blacke of hewe: euen so died in their mothers wombe acordyng to the disposicion of the fathers nature, whose siede also is blacke: as like wise in the Aethiopians. Talle men and strongly made. Thei are very spare fieders, namely when thei are in Campe. Neither delighte thei in muche preasse. Thei are as I saied, greate deckers and trimmers of them selues, haters of theft. Thei liue by lawe, but not written. They haue no knowledge of lettres, but administer altogether without booke. And for which they are voide of guile, and of very sobre diete: all thing prospereth well with them. Thei drinke no wine, but when thei Sacrifie to their goddes. But their drincke is a bruage that thei make sometyme of Rize, sometime of Barlie. Their meate for the mooste parte is soupynges made also of Rize.
In their lawes, bargaines, and couenauntes, their simplicitie and true meanyng well appeareth: for that thei neuer are muche contencious aboute them. Thei haue no Lawes concernyng pledges or thynges committed to another mannes kiepyng. No witnessynges, no handwritynges, no sealynges, ne suche like tokens of trecherie and vntrust: but without all these, thei trust and be trusted, thei belieue and are belieued, yea, thei oftentymes leaue their houses wide open without keper. Whiche truely are all great signes of a iuste and vprighte dealyng emong them. But this peraduenture can not seatle well with euery mannes fantasie: that thei should liue eche manne aparte by himself, and euery body to dine and to suppe when he lust, and not all at an howre determined. For in dede for the felowshippe and ciuilitie, the contrary is more allowable. Thei commende and occupie muche as a commune exercise, to rubbe their bodies: specially with skrapers made for the nones. Aftre whiche, thei smothe them selues again with Ebenum, whereof I spake afore.
In their Toumbes, and Bewrialles, very plaine and nothyng costlie: But in trimming and arraieng of their bodies, to, to, gaude glorious. For there aboute thei neither spare gold, ne precious stone ne any kinde of silke that thei haue. Thei delighte muche in garmentes of white Sarcenet. And for that thei sette muche by beautie, thei cary aboute with theim phanelles to defende them from the sonne, and leaue nothyng vndone, that maketh for the bettre grace of their faces. Thei sette asmuche by truthe alone, as by all other vertues together.
Age hath there no prerogatiue, except thei winne it with their wisedome, and knowledge. Thei haue many wiues, whiche thei vse to buye of their parentes for a yoke of Oxen. Some to serve them as their vndrelynges, and some for pleasure, and issue. Whiche maie neuerthelesse vse buttoke banquetyng abrode (for any lawe or custome there is to restreine theim) excepte their housebandes by fine force, can compelle them to kepe close.
No one emong the Yndians either sacrifieth coroned, ne offreth odours, ne liquours. Thei wounde not their Sacrifice in no maner of wise: but smore31 hym by stopping the breath. Least thei should offre any mangled thing vnto God, but that that ware in euery parte whole. He that is conuicte of false witnessyng, hath his fingres cutte of by the toppe ioynctes. He that hath taken a limme from any manne, suffreth not onely the like losse, but loseth also his hande. But if any man haue taken from an artificer, his hande, or his eye, it lyeth hym vpon his heade.
The kyng hath a garde of bought women: who take chardge of his bodie, and haue the trimmyng and orderyng thereof, the residue of the armie, remainyng without the gates. If the Kyng fortune to be droncken, it is not onely lawfull for any one of these women to slea hym: but she shall also as in the waie of rewarde, be coupled in mariage to the nexte king. Whiche (as is saied) is one of his sonnes, that afore enioied the Croune. It is not lawfull for the king to slepe by daie time: and yet in the night tyme to auoide trecherie, he is forced euery houre to chaunge his chambre. When he is not in campe, he ofte tymes cometh abroade: bothe to giue sentence, and to heare matters dependyng in question. And if it be time of daie to trimme his bodie: he bothe heareth the pleaes, and is rubbed in the meane season with the skrapers afore mencioned, by thre of his women. He cometh furthe also to Sacrifices, and to hunting: Where he is accompaignied with a rable of women, in as good ordre as ours ware wonte to be vpon Hocke Mondaie.32 His waie is ranged with ropes, and his garde of menne abideth without. But if it fortune any to steale in, to the women (whiche is contrary to their ordre and duetie) he loseth his heade for it. There go afore hym Tabours and Belles. When he hunteth in places fensed aboute, two or thre armed women stande preste,33 for his aide, and defence. But when he hunteth in open place, he is caried vppon an Eliphante: and euen so sittyng on his backe shooteth, or throweth the darte at his game. Some of his women ride vppon Horses, some vpon Elephantes. As likewise in the warres, where thei fight with all kinde of weapons skilfully.
Suche menne also as haue gathered thinges into writynges, recorde: that the Yndians worshippe as their goddes the father of raine Iupiter: Ganges their floude, and the familiar spirites of their countrie. And when their kyng washeth his heade, thei make solempne feast, and sende his highnes greate giftes, eche man enuyenge other, who maye shewe hym self most riche, and magnificent.
The commune wealth of the Yndians, was sometyme deuided into seuen states or degrees. The Sages (whiche other calle Philosophers) ware of the first ordre, or state: the whiche although thei ware, in nombre feawer then any of the rest: yet ware thei in honour and dignitie aboute the kyng, farre aboue all other. These menne (priuiledged from all busines) neither be troubled with office, ne be at any mannes commaundemente: But receiue of the communes suche thinges as serue for the Sacrifices of their goddes, and are requisite for bewrialles. As though thei ware bothe well acqueinted, and beloued in heauen, and knewe muche of the trade in helle. For this cause haue thei bothe giftes and honour largely giuen them. And in very diede thei do muche good among the people. For in the beginning of the yere, assemblyng together, thei foreshewe of raine, of drouthe, of winde and of sickenesse: and of suche like thynges as maie to profeight be foreknowen. For as well the kynge as the people, ones vndrestandyng their foresawes, and knowyng the certeintie of their iudgemintes by former experience: shone the euilles, and are preste to attende vpon that, that is good. But if any of their said Sages shall fortune to erre in his foresighte: other punishmente hath he none, then for euer after to holde his peace.
The seconde ordre is of housebande menne, whiche beyng more in nombre then any of the other states, and exempte fro the warres, and all other labour: bestowe their tyme onely in housebandrie. No enemie spoileth them, none troubleth them: but refraineth fro doing them any hurte or hinderaunce, vpon respect of the profighte that redoundeth to the whole, throughe their trauailles. So that thei, hauyng libertie without all feare to followe their business, are instrumentes and meanes of a blessed plenteousnesse. Thei with their wiues and children, dwell alwaie in the countrie, withoute resortyng to the tounes or citie. Thei paie rente to the Kyng (for all the whole Countrie is subiecte to their kyng) neither is it lawfull for any of the communes to occupie and possesse any grounde, without paieynge rente. And the housebande men beside this rente, yelde vnto the Kynges maiestie, a fiueth of their fruictes yerely.
The thirde ordre standeth all by brieders and fieders, of all sortes, whiche like wise neither enhabite toune ne village: but with tentes, in the wilde fieldes. And these with huntyng and foulyng in sondrie wise, so kiepe vndre the beastes and hurtefull foules: that whear other wise the housebande menne should in siede tyme, and towarde harueste, be muche acloyed34 and hyndered by the fowles, and theim selues alwaie by the beastes, the countrie is quiete from al suche annoyance.
In the fowrthe ordre are Artificers, and handicraftesmen. Whiche are deuided, some into Smithes, some into Armourers, some for one purpose, some for another, as is expediente. These doe not onely liue rente free, but also haue a certaine of graine allowed them at the kinges allowaunce.
In the fiueth ordre are the menne of warre, a greate nombre daiely exercised in armes, bothe on Horsebacke, on Elephantes, and on foote. And all their Elephantes, and horses miete for their warres, are found of the kinges allowaunce.
The sixteth ordre is of Surueiours or Maisters of reporte, whiche haue the ouer sighte of all thynges that are done in the realme, and the charge to bryng reaporte vnto the kyng.
In the seuenth place, are thei that be Presidentes, and heades of the commune counsailles, very fewe in nombre, but worthy men for their nobilitie and wisedome. Oute of these are chosen counsailours for the kynges Courtes, and officers to administre the commune wealth, and to determine controuersies: yea, capitaines for the warres, and Princes of the realme.
The whole state of Ynde beyng deuided into these ordres or degrees: it is also ordeined, that a man shall not marie out of the ordre, wherin his callyng lieth, ne chaunge his trade. For neither maie the souldiour occupie housebandrie thoughe he woulde: ne the artificers entremedle with the doctrine of the Sages.
There are also amonge the Yndians, persons of honour appointed to be as it ware Tutours of straungiers, to see that no wronge be done them, to put ordre for their kepyng, and Phisicke, if any falle sicke. As also (if it fortune any of them to die) for the bewrieng of theim, and to deliuer their goodes, and money to their nexte friendes.
All causes are brought afore the iudges, who heare the parties, and punysshe the offenders diligently. Ther is no slauery amonge them. Yea, thei haue a certaine ordinaunce, that none shalbe slaue or bonde amonge them, but all fre, and of equalle aucthoritie and honour. For thei holde opinion that who so accustometh his selfe neither to be Lorde ouer other, ne to wronge any bodie: that man hath prepared him selfe sauftie and ease what so euer shall happen hym by any aduenture. And a fonde thing ware it to make the lawes indifferente for all, and not to make the states of the men indifferente.
But because ther are in Inde manye sondrie contries, diuerse bothe in people and tongue (as in so large a thing muste nedes happen) ye shall vnderstond that thei do not all alike vse suche trade as I haue described, but in some places somewhat worse.
Of those that lie towarde the Easte, some occupie brieding, and some do not. Other dwellinge in the mershe and fennes vpon the riuers side: occupie fisshing, and liue by the same all rawe. And thebettre to worcke their feate, thei make them selues boates, of suche canes as growe ther, of a wonderfull biggenes, So, that so muche of the cane as is betwixte ioyncte, and ioyncte, is a iuste proportion of timbre for one of their boates.
These of all the other Indians, are appareilled in matte, made of a certayne softe kinde of mere rushes. Which when they haue gathered out of the floude, and sliced out in maner of lace: they brayde together muche like oure figge fraile, or suche like kinde of mattinge, and make them selues ierkins therof.
Those that be yet by Easte of them, are brieders of cataille: and liue altogether with rawe fleshe, and haue to name Padians. Whose conditions are sayde to be suche.
As often as it fortuneth any of their citezeins to besicke, yf it be a manne: his nierest friendes, and those that are moste aboute him, kylle him by and by, leaste (saye thei) his fleshe shoulde waxe worse. Yea, thoughe he woulde dissemble the matier, and denie him self to be sicke, it boteth not. For withoute pardon, they kille him, and make a feaste with him. If it be a woman, looke how the menne did by the manne, so do the women by a woman. Likewise do thei with bothe sortes, when thei waxe croked for age, or become impotente: where broughte, what by the one meanes and the other, none of them die for age.
Ther is another sorte of the Indians that kille no liuinge thing, ne plante, nor sowe, nor builde house: but liue with herbes, and a certeine sede whiche groweth there of the owne accorde, muche like vnto gromelle, whiche thei gather with the cuppe or shelle that it groweth in, and so seeth it, and eate it. If any of these falle sicke, he wandereth forthe into some deserte place, and ther laieth him downe: no manne taking hede either to his lieng or to his dienge.
All these Yndians that I nowe haue spoken of, in quenching of natures heate, vse their women as secretly as beastes do their females.
These Yndians haue a kinde of sages, that the Griekes calle Gimnosophistæ, whiche as the worde Sophista soundeth now, might merily be interpreted briechelesse bablers. But as Sophista did signifie then, naked Sages: or to giue one Grieke worde for a nother, naked Philosophres. These (as Petrarche writeth) haunte the outemoste borders, and shadowie partes of that countrie, wandering naked accordinge to their name, vp and downe, heather and theather studienge, and searching the natures of thinges, the course of the heauens, and the secretes of knowledge. Thei continue sometime al the whole daye from the sonne rising, till his downe goinge: beholdinge the same with stedfaste eye, neuer tourning away the heade (althoughe it be ther moste feruently hote) searching and spienge aftre certaine secretes in the body thereof.
At another time thei passe the daye likewyse, standing one while on one legge, another while on another in the broilinge sande of that contrie. Froste nor snowe, nor firie heate greued not them.
Amonge these, is ther a people called Brachmanes, whiche (as Didimus their king wrate vnto Alexandre when he went aboute to subdue them) liue a pure and simple life, led with no likerous lustes of other mennes vanities. This people longeth for no more then nature requyreth naturallye. Thei are content with suche foode as commeth to hande, desiryng no suche as other menne tourne the worlde almoste vpside downe to haue, leauing no element vnransaked to gette a gowbin35 for their glotenous gorge: but suche as the earth vnploughed, or vndoluen, yeldeth of her self. And because thei acqueinte not their table with surfet, in dede thei know not so many kindes of sickenesses, ne so many names of diseases as we doe: but thei bettre knowe what sounde healthe meaneth, and staied continuaunce of the same then euer we are like.
Thei haue no neide to craue one anothers helpe and reliefe, wher no manne maketh clayme by (thine) and by (myne) but euery manne taketh what he lusteth and lusteth no more then he niedeth. Enuie cannot dwelle ther, ne none of her impes, wher all be equalle, and none aboue other, and all alike poore, maketh all alike riche. Thei haue no officers of Iustice among them, because thei do nothing that ought to be punisshed. Ther can no lawe appiere, because none offence appeareth.
The whole people hath one onely lawe, to do nothinge against lawe that nature prescribeth. To cherishe labour, to barre out ydlenes, and banis all [Transcriber’s note: ‘colle’ in original] couetyse. That lechery licke not away the vigour of their spirites, and strength: nor lacke throwe menne in desperate doompes. That euery manne hath enoughe, wher no manne couettes more. That neuer content, is of all other the moste cruell restles plague. For whome she catcheth, she throweth a foote beneth beggery, whilest thei canne finde none ende of their scrattinge, but the more thei haue, the fellier gnaweth their longing.
Thei warme by the Sonne, the deawe is their moisture, the riuer is their drinke, the faire grounde their bedde. Care breaketh not their sleape, Compassing of vanities wearieth not their minde. Pride hath no stroke ouer them, among whom ther is no diuersite. Neither is their any kinde of bonde knowen amonge them: but the bondage of the body to the minde whiche they onely allowe to be iuste.
For the building of their houses, they sende not ouer sea for stone, thei burne no Calion to make lime to tempre their mortre, thei bake no brickes, nor digge no sande. But either make them caues in the earthe, or take suche as they finde ready made in the sides of mounteines and hilles. Ther dwel thei without feare of rage or ruine, of weather or of winde. He thincketh him self saeflier fenced from showres with his caue, then with a fewe tiles: and yet hath by it a double commoditie. A house while he liueth, and a graue ready made when he dyeth. Ther is no glittering apparell, no rattelinge in sylkes, no sylkes, no rusteling in veluettes, but a litle brieche of brawded russhes, or rather a couering of honeste shamefacednesse.
The women are not sette oute to allure, ne pinched in to please, ne garnisshed to gase at. No heare died, no lockes outelaied, no face painted, no skinne sliicked, no countrefeicte countenaunce, nor mynsing of passe. No poticary practise, no ynckhorne termes, nor pithlesse pratling. Finally no colours of hipocrisie, no meanes to set out more beautie then nature hathe giuen them. They ioyne not in engendrure for likerous luste, but for the loue of yssewe and succession. Thei kepe no warres, but mainteine peace: not with force, but with peaceable behauour and maners. The father and the mother folowe not the child to the bewrialle. Thei builde no toumbes for the deade: more like vnto chirches then graues. They bewry not vp their asshes in pottes dasshed full of pearle and precious stone. For why they estieme in these, neither the honour of the quicke, ne the pleasure of the deade: but raither the trouble and paine of bothe. Pestilence or other diseases (as I haue sayd) the Abrahmanes are not annoyed with, for they enfecte not the ayer with any filthe doinges. But nature alwaye with them, keapeth accorde with the season: and euery elemente his tourne with oute stoppe or barre. Their Phisicque is abstinence, which is able not only to cure the maladie already crepte in: but also to holde oute suche as otherwise mighte entre. Thei couette no sightes, nor shewes of misrule: no disguisinges nor entreludes. But when thei be disposed to haue the pleasure of the stage, thei entre into the regestre of their stories, and what thei finde theremoste fit to belaughed at, that do thei lamente and bewaile. They delight not as many do, to heare olde wiues tales, and fantasies of Robin Hoode: but in studious consideracion of the wondreful workemanship of the worlde, and the disposinge of thinges in suche ordre of course and degree. Thei crosse no sease for merchaundise, ne learne no colours of Rethoricque. Thei haue one kinde of plaine eloquence commune to them all: tongue, and harte agreinge in truthe. Thei haue neither moote halles, ne vniuersities, whose disagreable doctrine more leaning to apisshe arte, then natural reason and experience, neuer bringeth anye staye, or certeinte of thinges. One part of this people iudgeth mannes perfeteste blessednes to stande in honestie. And a nother in pleasure. Not in the tickelinges of the taile, or pamperinges of the bealy, more bittre then pleasaunte as thou maye vse them: but to lacke nothing that perfecte nature desireth, ne nothing to do that perfecte nature misliketh. Thei thincke it no honour to God, to slea for him an innocente beaste; yea thei say he accepteth not the sacrifice of men polluted with bloode, but rather loueth a worship voide of all bloodsheade. That is to saye, the humble entreatie of woorde, because that proprety only (to be entreated with woordes) is commune to God and to manne. With this therefore saye they he is pleased, because we somewhat resemble him self therin. And this was the life of the vnchristened Brahmanes, wher with we Christianes are so farre out of loue, that we are afraid leaste any man should beleue it to be true.
The Yndians called Catheis, haue eche man many wiues. And assone as any one husbands fortuneth to die, his whole number of wiues assemble before the chiefest iudges of the citie, and there eche for her self, sheweth and alledgeth her welle deseruinges towarde her housebande: how derely she loued him, howe muche she tendered and honoured him. And she that is by them iudged to haue borne her self beste in that behaulfe, and to haue bene dierest to her husbonde: she in the beste maner and moste gorgeous that she can deuise, triumphing and reioysinge, getteth her vp vpon the funeralle pyle wher her housebandes corps lieth ready to be brente, and ther kissinge and embrasinge the deade body, is burned together with her housebande. So gladde is she to haue the victorie, in the contencion of wiuely chastitie, and honeste behauiour toward her husbande. And the other that lyue, thincke them selues dishonoured: and escape not without spotte of reproche as longe as they liue. Their children in their infancie, are not nourished vp at the libertie and will of the parentes: but certeine there are appointed to viewe the children: whiche yf thei spie vntowardnes in the infante, deformitie, or lacke of lymmes, commande it to be slayne.
Thei ioyne not mariages for nobilitie of birthe, or aboundaunce of substaunce, but for beaultie, and rather vpon regarde of frute, then of luste.
Certaine also among the Yndians haue this custome, that yf thei be of suche pouertie that thei be not able to marye oute their doughters: euen in the floure of her age thei bringe her, or them, furthe into the marcate with trompet and dromme, or suche other their noyses of warre: And their, after the multitudeis comen together, the maiden first vncouereth her self wholie vp to the harde shoulders, on the backe haulfe, to be sene starke naked, and aftre that likewise on the bealy. Yf the multitude finde no faulte, but allowe her as worthye to please for her bodye, then marieth she to some one ther, whome she beste liketh.
Megasthenes writeth that vpon diuerse mounteines in Ynde, are people with dogges heades, and longe clawes, cladde in hydes of beastes, speakinge with no voyce like vnto manne, but barking onlye, muche like vnto dogges, with mouthes roughe like a grater.
Thei that dwelle aboute the heade of Ganges, haue no nede of anye kinde of meate: for they liue by the sauour of their frutes. And yf thei fortune to iorney, so that they thincke to fayle of the sauour when thei would haue it, they cary with theim to smell to, at times as thei fainte. But if it fortune those to smelle any horrible stincke, it is as present deathe vnto theim, as poyson to vs. It is recorded in writyng, that certaine of those were in Alexandres campe.
We rede also that there are in Inde men with one eye and no mo. And certein so notably eared that thei hange downe to their hieles with suche a largenesse that they may lye in either of them as vpon a pallet: and soharde, that thei may rende vp trees with them. Some others also hauing but one legge, but vpon the same such a foote, that when the sonne is hote, and he lacketh shadowe, lyenge downe vpon his backe, and holdinge vp his fote, he largely shadoweth his whole bodie.
It is redde that in Clesia certein women haue but ones childe in all their life time: and the children as sone as thei are borne, immediatly to become horeheded. Againe, that there is another nacion, much longer lived than we are, whiche in their youth are horeheared: and in their age, their heare waxeth blacke. They affirme also that there is another sorte of women that conceiue at fyue yeres olde, and liue not aboue the age of viii. yeres. There are also that lacke neckes, and haue their eyes in their shoulders. Ther are also beside these, certeine saluages with dogges heades, and shacke heared on their bodies, that make a very terrible charringe with their mouthes. But in these and suche like tales of the Indians, and their countrie: for that a manne had nede of a redie beliefe that should take theim for truthes, one had not niede to bee to large: considerynge specially that menne nowe a daies, will skante beleue the reporte of other mens writinges, in the thinges that almost lye vndre their noses.
Ther is a place betwixt Gedrosia and the floude Yndus which is called Cathainus of the Cathaiens that enhabyte it. This people ware an ofspring of the Scithians, muche altered from their naturall condicions, and wonted maners, if that that Aritone the Arminiane writeth of them in his storie, be true.
Thei passe (saieth he) all other men in quicke smelling. And thei saye of them selues, that though all other menne haue two instrumentes of sight, yet do none se with both two in dede, but thei: all other men in comparison either to haue no sight, or elles as it ware but with one eye. Their wittinesse is greate, but their boastinge greater. The whole nacion of them is perswaded, that thei muche passe all other men in knowledge, and the subtilties of sciences. Thei are all of colour shining, white, small eyed, beardelesse by nature. Their lettres are aftre the facion of the Romaine, all in squares. Thei are diuersely ledde with fonde supersticions, some aftre one sorte, and some aftre another. But thei are all voyde of the true knowledge which is in Iesus Christe. Some worship the sonne, some the mone. Other, ymages of yoten metalle, manie of them an oxe. And thus to sondry suche other monsters, hath this people in sondry wyse diuided it selfe in supersticion. Thei haue no maner of written lawes, nor knowe not what we meane when we speake of faithfulnesse or trustiness. And wher (as I said afore) thei haue in all handi worckes a passing subtiltie of witte, yet in the knowledge of heauenly thinges, thei are altogether to learne: that is to saie, the are vtterly ignoraunt. A cowardly people and very feareful of death. Yet exercise thei a maner of warre, but that thei handle rather by witte, and pollicie, then by strength and hardinesse. In their fighte thei use a kinde of shaftes, and certaine other weapons of flight, vnknowen to other countries.
Their money is a piece of square paper, with their Kynges Image vpon it. And because it cannot be durable: ordre is taken, that when it is soiled or dusked muche, with passyng from man to man, thei shall bring it to the coignyng house, and make exchaunge for newe. All their vtensiles and necessaries of house, are of golde, siluer, and other metalles. Oile is so deintie emong theim, that the kyng onely vseth it, as it ware for a precious ointement Thus haue we treated of the Yndians, and now to their borderers, the Scithians.
31 To smother, from the Dutch smooren
32 Hock–Monday fell eight days after Easter, Hock-tide was a festival instituted in memory of King Hardicanute’s death in 1042. Hock–Tuesday money was a duty paid to the landlord in ancient times.
33 Preste — ready.
34 This word, meaning overburthened, is frequently met with in Chaucer.
35 A large mouthful. From the old French, Gobeau.
Scithia (a countrie lieng by North) is said of Herodotus, to take the name of Scitha Hercules sonne. Or as Berosus Iudgeth, of an other Scitha, borne of our greate granndame Araxe, Noahes wife, that dwelt first in that countrie. This people in the beginnyng pente within narowe boundes, so in processe by litle and litle, through their valeauntnes and force enlarged their limites: that thei became lordes of many countries aboute, and grewe into a great gouernaunce and renoume. Thei nestled first vpon the floude Araxis so fewe in nombre and so base: that no manne thought theim worthie the troublyng or talkyng of. But gettyng vnto them a certain king, hardie, of great courage, and notable, experience in the warres: thei enlarged their land so, that thei made it stretche on the one parte (whiche is altogether Hille, and Mounteigne) vnto Caucasus, and ouer at the plain vnto the Occean, and vnto the greate marshe of Meotis, and Tanais the floude. From whence the countrie of Scithia now stretcheth all along toward the East. And because the mounteigne Imaus, ronnyng along as the countrie coasteth, deuides it in the middes into two haulues: the one haulfe is called Scithia within Imaus, and the other without (as ye would saie) on this side the Mounte, and beyonde. There neuer medled any power with theim, that was able to conquers theim: or muche to endamage them. Thei forced Darius, the Kyng of the Persians, with greate dishonour to flie their countrie. Thei slue Cirus with all his armie. Thei made an ende of Alexandre with al his power. The Romaines sente theim threates thei would warre with theim, but they proued in fine but wordes. Thei are a people not tameable with any toile, bittre warriours, and of great strength of bodie. At the first very rawe, and with out any ordinarie trade of life: neither knowyng what tillage meant, ne yet hauyng any houses or cotages to dwell in. But wandryng vp and doune the wilde fieldes and driuyng their catteile afore theim, their wiues and their children ridyng in wagons by them. Thei obserued iustice, without constraint of lawe. Thei compted none offence more heinous, then thefte. As folke that had nothyng vndre locke nor keye, barre, nor bolte: but altogether in the open fielde. Thei nether occupied golde ne siluer. Their chief foode was milke and Hony. Against colde and other stormes, thei wrapped their bodies in felles, and hides of beastes, and Mice skinnes. Thei knewe not what Wollen meante, ne any facion of garmente.
This maner of life was in many of the Scithians, but not in all. A greate nombre of theim, as thei muche differed in distaunce of place from other, so differed thei also from other in maners: and vsed a certeine trade of liuyng emong them selues, wherof we aftreward will entreats, when we haue saied somewhat more of their facions in generall.
Many of the Scithians delight in manslaughter. And the firste man that he taketh, in fight, his bloud drincketh he: and offreth vnto his Kynge the heades of all those that he ther sleaeth. For when he hath so done, he is admitted to be partaker of the butine what so euer it be, whereof he should be otherwise partles. He cutteth of the heade aftre this sorte. Firste, with his knife he maketh in it a gashe rounde aboute like a circle, vndre the eares: then taketh he it by the heare of the croune, and striketh it of. That done, he fleaeth it, and taweth the skinne betwixte his handes, vntill it become very souple and soft and kiepeth it for a hande kercher. This wille he hange vpon the reine of his horse, and glorieth not a litle in it. And he that hath moste of suche handkerchers, is compted the valeauntest manne. There are many also that sowe together these skinnes of menne, as other doe the skinnes of beastes, and weare theim for their clothyng. Some of them flea the right hand of their enemies beyng slaine, so that the nailes also remain vpon the fingres, and make couers of theim for their quiuers.
Many of them flea the whole bodie, and stretche out the skinne vpon certaine stickes fitted for the nones, and so sprede them vpon their Horse. Of the Skulles of the heades thus slaine, thei make measures to drincke in: coueryng them on the outside with rawe Neates leather, and gilding them on the inside, if he be of habilitie. And when any gheste of estimacion commeth vnto theim, thei offre them to drincke in asmany as they haue, and declare for a greate braggue of their valeauntnesse, that so many they haue slaine with their owne hande.
Ones euery yere, all the chief heades of the Scitians, kepe a solempne drinckyng. At the whiche the maner is, out of one of these Skulles, as out of a wassailing boule, to giue all those the wine that haue slaine an enemie. But he that hath done no such notable acte, tasteth not therof, but sitteth aparte in a corner with out honour: which is iudged among them a greate reproche. But thei that haue achieued many slaughters, thei drancke of two Goblettes together, which thei haue for that purpose.
The goddes whom thei worshippe, and doe Sacrifice vnto, are these: Firste and chiefly vnto Vesta, then to Iupiter, and the goddesse of the grounde: for that thei take her to be Iupiters wife. Nexte vnto Apollo and Venus, Mars and Hercules. Yet erecte thei no Chapelle, Altare, nor Image to any of these: but onely to Mars: to whom thei offre of euery hundred prisoners that thei take, one for a sacrifice. To the other thei offre bothe horses and other beastes, but specially horses. Swine thei so little estieme, that thei neither offre them to any of their goddes ne vouchesauf to kiepe theim in their Countrie. Looke whom the kyng punissheth with death, his children he also commaundeth to be slain, as many as be males, but the women are pardoned.
With whom the Scithians couenaunt or make League: after this manor thei doe it. They fille an earthen panne with wine, and of the parties that shall strike the League or couenaunte, thei drawe a quantitie of bloude, whiche thei mingle therwith. Then diepe thei into the panne their Curtilasse, then shaftes, their axe, and their darte. That done, thei wishe vnto them selues many terrible curses and mischiefes, if thei holde not the league or couenaunte. And then drincke thei the wine. And not thei onely that strike the couenantes, but also those that are moste honourable in their compaignie.
The bewriall of their kynges is aftre this maner; where the Kyng dieth, those that are of his bloude, rounde his heare, cutte of one of his eares, slice his armes rounde aboute, all to begasshe his foreheade and his nose, and shoote him through the lifte hande, in thre or fowre places. Then laie thei the corps in a Carte, and cary it to the Gerrites, where the Sepulchres of all their Kynges are. And thei dwell vpon the floude Boristhenes, about the place wher it becometh first saileable. This people when thei haue receiued it, trenche out a square plotte in the ground very wide and large. And then rippe the bealy of the corps, and bowelle it cleane: clensyng it and drieng it from all filthe, and fille it vp with Siler Montanum, Frankencense, Smallache siede, and Anise siede, beaten together in a Mortre. And when thei haue sowed it vp againe close, thei ceare the whole bodie, and conueighe the same in a Carte, to the nexte people vndre the gouernaunce of the Scithians, whiche with honour receiue it, and conueigh it vnto the nexte of their dominion: and so from one to another, vntle it haue passed rounde aboute, to as many peoples as are of their dominion, and be comen againe to the place of bewriall emong the Gerrites, whether it is accompanied with a certain of all the peoples, to whom it hath comen, as thei gathered encreace from place to place. Thei, aftre what tyme thei haue laied the corps, cophine and all, vpon a bedde of state, amid the square afore mentioned: sticke doune their iauelines and speares aboute him, and with stickes laied ouer from one to another, frame as it ware a Cielyng, whiche thei couer with a funeralle palle. Then in the reste of the voide space, that yet remaines in the Cophine made for the nones: thei berwrie one of his dierest lemmans, a waityng manne, a Cooke, a Horsekeper, a Lacquie, a Butler, and a Horse. Whiche thei al first strangle, and thruste in, together with a portion of all sortes of plate, and of euery suche thyng as appertained to his housholde, or body. And when the yere comes about, then do thei thus. Thei take of those that ware nerest about the Kyng (now there are none aboute the king, but thei be Scithians free borne, and suche as his self doth commaunde: for he maie be serued with no bought slaue) of those take thei fiuetie and as many of his best horses. And when thei haue strangeled bothe the men and the horses, they bowell the Horses, stuffe their bealies againe with Chaffe, and sowe theim vp close, and sette the menne vppon their backes. Then make thei a voulte ouer round about the bordre of the greate square, and so dispose these Horse menne enuiron the same, that thei sieme a farre of, a troupe of liuyng horsemen gardyng the kyng.
The communes haue also a maner of bewrialle aftre a like sorte. When one of theim dieth, his nexte neighbour and kindsfolke laie hym in a Carte, and cary hym aboute to euery of his frindes: whiche at the receipte of hym make a feaste, as well to the kindsmen, as to all the residewe that accompaignie the corps. And when thei haue thus caried hym aboute by the space of fowretene daies, he is bewried. All the braine of his heade beyng first piked out, and the skulle rinsed with water cleane. Aboute the bodie thei sette vp three sparres of woodde slopyng, and restyng one vpon another at the toppes. Rounde about these sparres, thei straine cappyng woollen, packyng theim as close as thei can. And within betwixt the sparres, as it ware in the middest ouer the deade, thei set a traie or shallowe trough, where in to thei caste a kinde of stones, that glistereth by fire light.
The menne emong the Scithians do not vse to washe them selues. But the women vse to powre water vpon their own bodies, and to rubbe themselues against some roughe stone: and then with a piece of a Cipresse, Ceadre, or Encence tree, to grate their whole bodie, vntill it be some what bollen or swollen. And then enoint thei bothe that and their face, with certeine medicines for the nones: whereby thei become the nexte daie of a very good smell, and (when the medicine is washed awaie) slicke and smothe.
Their commune othe, and the othe of charge in matiers of controuersie, or iudgemente, is by the kynges clothe of estate: by the whiche if a man shalbe tried to haue forsworne hymself (as their enchauntours haue a maner to trie with salowe roddes whether thei haue or not) by and by without respighte, he loseth his heade, and all his goodes, whiche tourne to the vse of them that haue proued him periured.
The Massagetes, a people of Scithia in Asie, beyond the sea called Caspium mare in appareille and liuyng, muche like to the Scithians, and therefore of some so called: vse to fighte bothe on horsebacke and on fote, with suche actiuitie and force, that thei are almoste inuincible in bothe. Their weapons are bowe and arrowes, Launces and Armynge swordes. Their beltes aboute their waste, the ornament of their heades, and their pollerone, are garnished with golde. Their Horses are barbed on the brest, with barbes of gold. Their reines, bridles, and trappour are all of golde. The heades of their Launces are of Brasse, and their Quiuers armed with Brasse. As for Siluer and Iron thei occupie none. Eche manne marieth one wife, and yet are the wiues of them all, commune one to another, whiche thyng is not vsed emong any of the other Scythians. When so euer any man lusteth for the compaignie of his woman, he hangeth vp his quiuer vpon the carte wherein his wife is caryed by him, and there openly without shame coupleth.
When any one of this people waxeth very aged, his friendes, acquaintance, and kindesfolke assembled together, make a bealy Sacrifice of hym: sleayng as many shiepe besides, as will serue for the fulnesse of the nombre. And when thei haue dressed theim, eate parte and parte like, the one with the other. And this kinde of departynge is compted emong theim, of all other moste blessed. If any fortune to pine awaie of sickenesse, hym eate thei not: but put in a hole, and throwe earthe vpon him. Sory for the losse, that he came not to the feaste.
Thei neither sowe nor mowe, but liue by flesshe of suche beastes as thei haue, and suche fisshe as Araxe the floude doeth plenteously minister vnto them: and with drinckynge of Milke, wherof thei make no spare. Thei knowe no goddes but the Sonne: In whose honour thei offre vp Horses in Sacrifice, as beyng in swiftenesse moste like vnto the Sonne.
The Seretines are a debonaire people, and suche louers of quietnesse, that they shonne to entremedle with any other people. Merchauntes passe their outmost floude toward them, but thei maie come no nigher. Along the banques there, thei sette oute suche thynges, as thei are disposed to selle. Not the Merchauntes, but the indwellers of the Countrie. For thei selle to other, and buie of none. And thei sette them in ordre as thei iudge them in price. The buyer cometh, and as he iudgeth theim by his eye to be worthe, without further trade or feloweshippe betwixte theim, so laieth he doune. And if thei receiue it, he departeth with the ware. Emong them is there neither whore nor thiefe, nor adulteresse broughte to iudgemente. Neither was it euer hearde, that there was a manne slaine emong theim. For the feare of their Lawes woorketh more strongly with theim, then the influences of the Starres. Thei dwelle as it ware in the beginnyng or entryng of the worlde. And for that thei liue aftre a chast sort: thei are neither skourged with Blastynges, ne Haile, ne Pestilence, ne suche other euilles. No manne toucheth a woman there, aftre she hath conceiued, ne yet in the time of her flowres. Thei eate none vncleane beastes, ne knowe what Sacrifisyng meaneth. Euery man there is his owne Iudge, acordyng to Iustice. Therefore are thei not chastised with suche corrections as happen vnto other for synne, but bothe continue long in life, and die without grief.
The Tauroschithians (so called for that thei dwell aboute the mounteigne Taurus) offre as many as fortune to make Shipwracke vpon their shore: to the virgine, whose name ye shall aftre heare. And if it fortune any Greke or Grekes, to be driuen thether, him doe thei sacrifice after this maner.
Aftre what tyme thei haue made prayer after their maner, thei strike of his heade with an hatchet. And (as some saie) tumble doune the carkesse into the Sea, (for this Virgine hath a Chapelle vpon the toppe of a high clieue, hangyng ouer the Sea, where this feate is doone) and naile vp the heade vpon a Gibet. In this poincte of nailyng vp the heade, all the writers agre, but in tomblyng doune the body, not so, for some affirme, that the body is bewried. The Virgine Deuille, to whom thei Sacrifice: is saith to be Iphigenia Agamemnons doughter. Their enemies as many as thei take, thus thei handle. Euery manne cutteth of his prisoners head, and carieth it home: and fasteneth it vpon the ende of a long pole, and setteth it vp: some vpon their house toppe some vpon their chimneis as high as thei can. And no merueile though thei set them so that thei might well see rounde about theim: for thei saie: they are the wardens and kepers of al their whole house. They liue by spoile, and by warre.
The Agathirsians are menne verie neate and fine, and greate wearers of golde in their appareill. Thei occupie their women in commune, so that thei seme all of one kindred, and one householde: neuer striuyng nor grudgyng one with another, muche like in body vnto the Thracians.
The Neuriens vse the maners of the Sithians. This people the somer before that Darius set furthe, ware constrained for the greate multitude of Serpentes that ware bredde in their quartres, to chaunge their dwellyng place. Thei verily doe belieue, and wille sweare it: that euery yere ones for a certaine daies, thei become Woulues, and retourne againe into their former shape and state.
The Antropophagites (so called for that thei liue by mannes fleshe) of all menne, are the worste condicioned, without lawe, or officer, appareilled like the Scithiens: but in language like vnto no bodye but them selues.
The Melanchleni do all weare blacke, as their name dothe signifie. And of these also are eaters of mannes fleshe: so manye as folowe the trade of the Scithians.
The Budines are a great nacion, and a populous, graye eyed, and redde headed al. Their heade citie is Gelone, wherof thei are also called Gelonites. Thei kepe euery thirde yere a reuelle in the honour of Bacchus: whereat thei make reuelle in dede, yea, reuell route. Thei ware sometime Griekes, whiche put of fro their countrie, seatled them selues there. And by processe, losing the proprietie of their owne tongue, became in language haulfe Grekes, and haulfe Scithians. Yet are the Gelonites bothe in language and liuinge, different from the Budines. For the Budines being natiue of the place, are brieders of Catteile: The Gelonites, occupienge tilthe: liue by corne, and haue their frute yardes. Neyther lyke in colour ne countenaunce to the other. All their quartres are verye full, and thicke of trees. It hathe also many meres and greate. In and aboute the whiche thei take Ottres, and Beauers, and many other beastes: of whose skinnes they make them pilches, and Ierkins.
The Lirceis liue by woodmanshippe, and huntinge, and aftre this maner. Their countrie beinge also very thicke of trees, thei vse to climbe suche as siemeth them beste: and there awaite their game. At the foote of euery mannes tree lieth a dogge, and a horse well taughte to couche flatte on the bealy, as lowe as can bee. When the beast cometh within daungier, he shoteth. And yf he hitte, he streighte commeth downe, taketh his horse backe, and foloweth with his hounde.
The Argippians dwell vndre the foote of the highe mountaines. Men whiche fro their birthe are balde; bothe the males and the females. Their noses tourne vp like a shoinge horne, and their chinnes be great out of measure. The sounde of their voice vnlike to all other: ther apparell aftre the sorte of the Scithians. Thei haue small regarde to brieding: by the reason wherof thei haue smalle store of cattaile. Thei lie vndre trees, whiche in the wintre thei couer ouer with a white kinde of felte, and in the somer take the same awaye, and lie vndre the open tree. Ther is no manne that will harme them for that thei are compted holy halowed: neither haue thei anye kinde of armour, or weapon of warre. These men haue the arbitrement of their neighbours controuersies rounde aboute. And as thei determine so are thei ended. Who so flieth vnto them, is saufe as in sanctuary.
The Issedonnes haue this propertie. When so euer any mannes father ther, dieth: all his kinsfolke bringe euery man one beast or other to the house of the sonne that kepeth the funeral. Which when they haue killed and minsed: they minse also the body of the deade. And bothe the flesshes beinge mingled together, thei fall to the banket. Then take thei the dead mannes heade, and pike the braine cleane, and all other moistures and ragges, and when thei haue guilte it, thei vse it for a representacion of the partie departed. Solempnisinge euery yere furthe, the memoriall, with newe ceremonies, and mo. This dothe the sonne for the father, and the father for the sonne, as the Grekes kepe their birthe daies.
These are also sayde to be verye iuste dealers, and their wiues to be as valeaunt and hardie as the husbandes. Suche haue the maners of the Scithians bene. But afterwarde being subdued by the Tartares, and wearing by processe into their maners and ordinaunces: thei nowe liue all aftre one sorte, and vndre one name.
Tartaria, otherwyse called Mongal: As Vincentius wryteth, is in that parte of the earthe where the Easte and the Northe ioyne together. It had vpon the Easte, the londe of the Katheorines and Solangores, on the South, the Saracenes: on the Weste the Naymaniens, and on the Northe is enclosed with the occean. It hath the name of the floude Tartar that ronneth by it. A country very hilly, and full of mountaines. And where it is champein, myngled with sande and grauelle. Barreine, except it be in places where it is moysted with floodes, which are very fewe. And therfore it is muche waaste, and thinly enhabited. Ther is not in it one Citie, ne one village beside Cracuris. And wood in the moste parte of the country so skante, that the enhabitauntes are faine to make their fyre, and dresse their meate with the drie donge of neate and horses. The ayer intemperate and wonderfulle. Thondre, and lightening in somer so terrible, that sondry do presently die for very feare. Nowe is it broiling hote, and by and by bittre colde, and plenty of snowe. Suche stronge windes sometime, that it staieth horse and man, and bloweth of the rider: teareth vp trees by the rootes, and doeth muche harme. In wintre it neuer raineth ther, and in Somer very often. But so slendrely, that the earthe is skante wette with al. And yet is ther great store of Cattaile: as Camelles, neate, &c. And horses and mares, in suche plentie, as I beleue no parte of the earth hath againe. It was first enhabited of foure peoples. Of the Ieccha Mongalles that is to saye, the greate Mongalles. The Sumongalles, that is to say the watre Mongalles, whiche called them selues Tartares, of the floude Tartar whose neighbours thei are.
The thirde people ware called Merchates, and the fourthe Metrites. There was no difference betwixte them eyther in body or language, but al aftre one sorte and facion. Their behauour was in the beginning very brute, and farre oute of ordre, without lawe or discipline, or any good facion. Thei liued amonge the Scithians, and kept herdes of cattalle in very base state and condition: and ware tributaries to all their neighbours. But within a while aftre, thei deuided them selues as it ware into wardes, to euery of the which was appointed a capitaine: in whose deuises and consentes consisted thordre of the whole. Yet ware thei tributaries to the Naimannes (their next neighbours) vntyll Canguista by a certaine prophecie was chosen their kynge. He assone as he had receiued the gouernaunce, abolished all worshippe of deuilles, and commaunded by commune decree that all the whole nacion should honour the highe God euerlasting: by whose prouidence he would seme to haue receiued the kingdome. It was further decreed that as manye as ware of age to beare armour, should be preste, and ready with the king at a certeyne daye. The multitude that serued for their warres, was thus distributed. Their capitaines ouer ten (which by a terme borowed of the Frenche, we calle Diseners) are at the commaundemente of the Centurians. And the Centuriane obeied the Millenarie, that had charge of a thousande. And he againe was subiecte to the grande Coronelle that had charge ouer ten thousande: aboue the whiche nombre thei mounted no degree of captaines.
This done, to proue the obedience of his subiectes, he commaunded seuen sonnes of the Princes or Dukes whiche before had gouerned the people: to be slaine by the handes of their owne fathers, and mothers. Whiche thinge althoughe it ware muche againste their hartes, and an horrible diede, yet did thei it. Partely vppon the feare of the residew of the people: and partly vpon conscience of their obedience. For why, the people thoughte when thei sawe him begyn aftre this sorte: thei had had a god amongest them. So that in disobeyinge of his commaundemente, thei thoughte thei should not haue disobeied a king but God him selfe.
Canguista takinge stomake with this power, firste subdued those Scithians that bordred vpon him, and made them tributaries. And where other afore had bene tributaries also vnto them: now receiued he in that one peoples righte, tribute of many. Then settinge vpon those that ware further off, he had suche prosperous successe that from Scithia to the sonne risinge, and fro thence to the middle earthe sea, and beyonde: he broughte all together vndre his subiection. So that he moughte nowe worthely wryte him selfe highe Gouernour, and Emperour of the Easte.
The Tartares are very deformed, litle of bodie for the moste parte, hauyng great stiepe eyes: and yet so heary on the eye liddes, that there sheweth but litle in open sight. Platter faced and beardlesse, sauyng vpon the vpper lippe, and a litle about the poincte of the chinne thei haue a feawe heares as it were pricked in with Bodkins. Thei be communely all slendre in the waste. Thei shaue the hindre haulfe of the heade, rounde aboute by the croune, from one eare to another: compassyng towarde the nape of the necke after suche a facion, that the polle behind sheweth muche like the face of a bearded manne. On the other parte, thei suffre their heare to growe at lengthe like our women: whiche thei deuide into two tresses, or braudes, and bryng aboute to fasten behinde their eares. And this maner of shauyng, do thei vse also that dwelle among theim, of what nacion so euer thei be. Thei theim selues are very light and nimble: good on Horse, but naughte on foote. All from the moste to the leaste, as well the women as the menne: doe ride either vpon Geldynges, or Kien, where so euer thei become. For stoned Horses thei occupie none, ne yet Gelding that is a striker, and lighte of his heles. Their bridelles are trimmed with muche gold, siluer, and precious stones. And it is compted a ioly thyng among theim: to haue a great sort of siluer sounded belles, gynglyng aboute their horse neckes. Their speache is very chourlishe and loude. Their singyng is like the bawlynge of Woulues. When thei drinke, thei shake the heade: and drincke thei do very often euen vnto dronckennesse, wherein thei glorie muche. Their dwellyng is neither in tounes ne Bouroughes. But in the fieldes abrode, aftre the maner of thauncient Scithians in tentes. And the ratherso, for that thei are all moste generally catteill mastres. In the wintre time thei are wont to drawe to the plaines, and in the Somer season, to the mounteignes and hillie places for the better pasture. Thei make theim Tentes, or elles rounde cotages of wickres, or of Felte vndersette with smothe poles. In the middes thei make a round windowe that giueth them lighte, and letteth out the smoke. In the middes of the Tent, is their fire, aboute the whiche their wife and their children doe sitte. The menne delight muche in dartyng, shootyng, and wrastelyng. Thei are merueilous good hunters, to the whiche thei go armed at all pieces. And assone as thei espie the beaste, thei come costing together rounde aboute and enclose her. And when euery manne hath throwen his darte, or shotte his arrowe: whilest the beast is troubled and amased with the stripes, thei steppe in to her and slea her. Thei neither vse breade ne bakyng: table clothe ne napkin.
Thei belieue that there is one GOD that made all thynges, bodily and ghostly, sene or vnsene, and hym thei honour: but not with any maner of Sacrifice or ceremonie. Thei make theim selues litle pupettes of silke or of felte, or of thrumme, like unto menne: whiche thei sette vp vpon eche side of their Tentes, and do them muche reuerence, beseching them to take hede to their catteille. To these thei offre the first milke of all their milche catteill, of what kinde so euer thei be. And before thei begin either to eate or drinke aught, thei sette a porcion thereof before theim. Looke what beaste thei kille to be eaten, thei reserue the harte all nighte in some couered cuppe, and the nexte mornynge seath it and eate it.
Thei worshippe also and Sacrifice to the Sonne, Moone, and elementes fowre. To Cham also their Lorde and Kyng, thei do very deuoute honour and Sacrifice: supposyng him to be the sonne of God, and to haue no piere in the whole worlde: neither can they abide to heare any other manne name hym.
This people so despiseth al other men, and thincke theim selues so farre to surmount them in wisedome and goodnes: that thei abhorre to speake to theim, or to compaignie with theim. Thei calle the Pope and all Christen menne, Doggues and Idolatres: because thei honour stones and blocques. And thei theim selues (beyng giuen to deuelishe supersticions) are markers of dreames, and haue dreame readers emong theim: as well to enterpreate their sweuens, 36 as to aske knoweledge of Idolles. In whom thei are perswaded that God speaketh: and therefore acordyng to their answeres, frame them selues to do. Thei marke many seasons, and specially haue regarde to the chaunges of the Moone. Yet make thei for no season, ne chaunge, any singular holidaie or obseruance: but ilike for them all indifferently. Thei are of so gredie a coueitousenesse, and desire, that if any of them se aughte, that he coueiteth to haue, and cannot obtein with the good wille of the owner: if it apperteigne to no Tartarre, he will haue it by force. And thei thincke (through a certein ordenaunce that their Kyng made) thei offende not therein. For suche a commaundemente had thei of Canguista, and Cham, their firste Kynges: That if it fortune any Tartarre, or Tartarres seruaunt, to finde in his waie, horse, man, or woman, without the kinges lettres or his saulfconduite: he should take it, him, her, or them as his owne for euer.
To suche as lacke money thei lende, but for shamefull gaines: that is to saie, two shillynges of the pounde for euery Monethe. And if it fortune ye to faile to make paiemente at the dale: ye shall also be forced to paie the enterest, acording to the rate of the Vsurie. That is to saie, of euery tenth penie, one.
Thei do so polle and oppresse their tributaries, with subsidies, taxes and tallages, as neuer did people but thei, that euer manne redde of. It is beyonde belief to saie. Thei euer coueite, and as Lordes of all, do rape, and rende from other, and neuer recompence aught. No, the begger that liueth on almose, getteth not an aguelette of hym. Yet haue thei this one praise worthie propretie, that if he fortune to finde them at meate: thei neither shutte the doore against hym, ne thruste him out, if he be disposed to eate, but charitably bidde them, and parte with them suche as thei haue. But thei fiede the vnclenliest in the worlde, as I haue saied, without tableclothe, napkinne, or towell to couer the borde, or to wipe at meate, or aftre. For thei neither washe hande, face, ne body, ne any garmente that thei weare. Thei nether eate bread, nor make bread, nor sallottes nor potage, nor any kinde of Pultz. But no maner of flesshe cometh to them amisse. Dogges, Cattes, Horses and rattes. Yea, sometime to shewe their crueltie, and to satisfie their vengeaunce, the bodies of suche their enemies, as thei haue taken, thei vse to roste by a greate fire: and when thei bee asembled a good nombre together, thei teare theim of the spittes like Wolues, with their tiethe, and deuoure them. And aftreward drincke vp the bloude, whiche thei reserue afore hande for the nones. Otherwise thei vse to drincke Milke. Thei haue no wine of the countrie it self, but suche as is brought into them thei drincke very gredilie. Thei vse to Lowse one anothers heade, and euer as thei take a Lowce to eate her, saieng: thus wille I doe to our enemies. It is compted a greate offence emong them to suffre drincke, or a piece of meate to be loste. Thei neuer therfore giue the bone to the Dogge, till they haue eaten out the marrowe. Thei neuer eate beaste (suche vile niggardes thei are) as long as the same is sounde and in good likyng: but when it fortuneth to be hurte, sicke, or febled by age, then bewrie they it in their bealies. Thei are greate sparers, and contente with smalle chaunge, and litle foode. Thei drincke in the mornyng, a goblet full of Milke or twaine, whiche serueth theim sometyme for their whole daies foode.
The menne and the women moste communely are appareilled ylike. The men weare vpon their heades shallowe copin tackes, comming but behinde with a taile of a handefull and a haulfe long, and as muche in breadth: whiche thei fasten vnder their chinnes, for falling or blowing of, with a couple of strynges of ribbande lace, as we doe our nighte cappes. Their married women wear on their heades, fine wickre Basquettes of a foote and a haulf long: rounde, and flatte on the toppe like a barrelle. Whiche are either garnished with chaungeable silkes, or the gaiest parte of the Pecockes feathers, and sette with golde and stones of sondrie sortes. Asfor the residue of their bodie, thei wear acording to their abilitie, bothe men and women, Skarlet or Veluet, or other silkes. Thei weare coates of a straunge facion, open on the left side, whiche thei put on acordingly, and fasten with fowre or five Buttons. Their Somer wiedes are all communely blacke: and those that thei weare in Winter and foule weather, white: and neuer lower then the knee. Wearing furres (wherein thei muche delight) thei weare not the furre inwarde, as we communely doe: but contrariwise the heare outwarde, that thei maie enioie the pleasure of the shewe.
It is harde to discerne by the appareile the maide, fro the wife, or the woman fro the manne: so like araied do the menne and the women go. Thei weare brieches, the one and the other. When they shal go to the skirmishe, or to battaille, some couer their armes (whiche at all other tymes are naked) with plates of iron, buckeled together alonge, in many pieces, that thei may the easelier sturre their armes. Some doe thesame with many foldes of Leather: wherwith thei also arme their head. Thei cannot handle a target: nor but fewe of theim a launce or a long sweard. Thei haue curtilasses of iii. quarters longe: not double edged but backed. Thei fighte all with a quarter blowe, and neither right downe, ne foyning. Thei be very redy on horsebacke, and very skilful archers. He is counted moste valeaunte, that best obserueth the commaundement and the obedience dewe to his capitaine. Thei haue no wages for their souldie, yet are they prest and ready in all affaires, and all commaundementes. In battayle, and otherwise wher oughte is to be done, very politike and experte. The princes and capitaines entre not the battle, but standyng aloofe, crye vnto their men, and harten them on: lookinge diligently aboute on euery side what is nedefull to be done. Sometime to make the armye sieme the greater, and the more terrible to the ennemy: thei set vpon horsebacke their wiues and their children, yea and men made of cloutes. It is no vilany amonge them to flye: if any thinge maye eyther be saued or wonne by it. When thei will shoote, thei vnarme their righte arme, and then let thei flye with suche violence, that it pearceth all kinde of armour. Thei giue the onset flockinge in plumpes, and likewise in plompes they flie. And in the flighte thei so shoote backe warde behinde them, that thei slea many of their ennemies pursuinge the chase. And when thei perceiue their ennemies dispersed by pursuinge the chase, or not to fighte any thing wholie together: soudeinly retourninge, the beginne a newe onset with a hayle of shotte, neither sparing horse ne man. So that oftetimes thei ouercome when thei are thoughte to be vanquisshed. When thei come to enuade any quartre or countrie, thei deuide their armie, and sette vpon it on euery parte: so that the inhabitours can neither haue laisure to assemble and resiste, ne waye to escape. Thus are thei alway sure of the victory, whiche thei knytte vp with moste proude crueltie. Neither sparinge manne woman ne childe, olde ne younge sauing the artificer onely, whom thei reserue for their own vses. And this slaughter make thei aftre this maner. When they haue all taken them, thei distribute them to their Centurians: who committe them againe to the slaues: to euery one fewer or more acordinge to the multitude. And when the slaues haue all slayne them as bouchers kylle hogges: then for a terrour to al other ther about: of euery thousande of the dead thei take one, and hange him vp by the hieles vpon a stake, amydde these deade bodies: and so ordre his heade as though it appiered by his facion or maner of hanginge, that he yet bothe harkened the complainte of his felowes, and lessened them againe. Many of the Tartarres when the bodies lie freshe bliedinge on the grounde, laye them downe alonge, and sucke of the bloud a full gloute.
Thei kepe faithe to no manne, howe depely so euer thei binde them selues thervnto. Thei deale yet wourse with those that thei ouer come with force. The maidens and younge women thei deflowre, and defile as thei come to hande, neither do thei iudge it any dishonestie. The beautifuller sorte thei lead away with them: and in extreame misery, constraine them to be their slaues all their lyfe longe. Of all other thei are moste vnbrideled in leachery. For althoughe they marye as many wiues as they luste, and are able to kepe: no degre prohibited, but mother, doughter, and sister: yet are thei as rancke bouguers with mankinde, and with beastes, as the Saracenes are, and no punishmente for it amonge them. The woman that thei marie, thei neuer take as wife, ne receiue any dowrie with her, vntill she haue borne a childe. So that if she be barren he maye caste her vp, and mary another.
This is a notable meruaile, that though amonge theim manye women haue but one manne: yet thei neuer lightely falle out, ne brawle one with another for him. And yet are the menne parcialle in theyr loue: shewing muche more fauour to one then another, and goynge fro the bedde of the one, streighte to the bedde of an other. The women haue their seuerall tentes and householdes: And yet liue verye chastely, and true to their housebandes. For bothe the manne and the women taken in adultery, suffre death by the lawe.
Those that are not occupied for the warres, driue the catteile a fielde, and there kepe them. Thei hunte, and exercise themselues in wrastlinge, other thing doe thei not. The care of prouision for meate and drincke, appareille and householde, they betake to the women. This people hath many superstitious toyes. It is a heinous matter with them, to touche the fier, or take fleshe out of a potte with a knife. Thei hewe or choppe no maner of thing by the fire, leasse by any maner of meanes, thei might fortune to hurte the thing which alway they haue in reuerence, and iudge to be the clenser, and purifier of al thinges. To laye them downe to reste vppon the whippe that thei stirre theyr horse with (for spurres thei vse none) or to touche their shaftes therewith, in no wise thei wylle not. Thei neither kille younge birdes, ne take them in the neste or other waies. Thei beate not the horse with the bridle. Thei breake not one bone with another. Thei are ware, not to spill any spone meate, or drincke, specially milke. No manne pisseth within the compasse of their soiourning place. And if any one of self willed stubbornesse should do it, he ware sure withoute all mercy to die for it. But if necessitie constraine them to do it (as it often happeneth) then the tente of hym that did it, with all that is in it, muste be clensed and purified after this maner. They make two fires, thre strides one from another. And by eche fire thei pitche downe a Iaueline. Vpon them is tied a lyne stretching fro the one to the other, and couered ouer with buckerame. Betwene these ii. Iauelins, as throughe a gate, muste all thinges passe that are to be purified. Two women (to whome this office belongeth) stande, on either side one, sprinckelinge on watre, and mumblinge certaine verses. No straungier, of what dignitie so euer he be, or of howe greate importance so euer the cause of his comming be: is admitted to the kinges sighte before he be purified. He that treadeth vppon the thressholde of the tente wherein their kinge, or anye of his chiefteines lyeth, dieth for it in the place. If any manne bite a gobet, greater than he is able to swallowe, so that he be constrained to put it out of his mouth againe: thei by and by make a hole vndre the tent, and ther drawe him out, and cruelly slea him. Many other thinges ther are which thei compte for faultes beyonde all forgiuenesse. But to slea a man, to enuade a nother mannes country, contrary to all righte and reason, to bereue them of their goodes and possessions, to breake the preceptes of God, thei estieme as nothinge. Thei haue a beliefe that aftre this life thei shal liue for euer in another worlde (but what maner of worlde thei cannot telle) and ther receiue rewarde for their well doinges. When any of them falleth sicke, and lieth at the pointe of deathe, thei sticke vp a Iaueline with a piece of blacke clothe at the dore of the tente wher he lieth, that none come in as they passe by. For no manne when he seeth this, dare entre thether vncalled.
Aftre what time the sicke is dead, his whole house gather together, and priuely conueighe the corps into some place withoute the tente, chosen for the purpose. Ther cut they out a trenche, broade and diepe enoughe to sette vp another lytle tent in: so that the toppe of the tent maye be well within the grounde. In that thei prepare a table with a banket: at the whiche thei sette the deade bodye in his beste appareille. And so together, as it ware with one hande, couer all with earth againe. Thei bewry with him also some beaste of bourden, and a horse ready sadled and appointed to ride. The gentlemen by their life time, appointe out a slaue (whome thei marke with their brande) to be specially bewried with him when he dieth. And this do thei vpon perswasion of a life in a nother worlde, wher thei woulde be loth to lacke these necessaries. Then doe the deades friendes take another horse, and slea him. And when they haue eaten the fleshe, thei stuffe the hide full of haye, and sowe it againe together and sette it vp ouer the graue vpon foure poles, in remembraunce of the deade. The bones do the two ordenarie women burne, for the clensinge and purifienge of the soule. But the gentlemen, and thei of higher degree, handle the hide aftre another maner. Thei cut it out into very fine thonges, to asmuche lengthe as thei can, and measure oute asmuche grounde about the Sepulchre as the thonge wille stretche vnto. For so muche ground thincke thei shall the deade haue in another worlde. At the thirtieth daye thei ende their mourning.
Certaine of the Tartarres, professing the name of Christe, yet farre from his righteousnes: when their parentes waxe aged, to haste their death, crame them with gobins of fatte. When thei die thei burne them to pouldre, whiche thei reserue as a precious Iewelle, to strawe vppon their meate euery daie. But to declare with what solempnitie and ioifulnes thei sette vp their newe Kynge, aftre the death of tholde: because it ware to longe a thyng, bothe for the reader and writer to set out at length, I will shewe you in brief theffecte.
Abrode in the fieldes, in a faire plaine ordenary for the purpose: all the Dukes, Erles, Barons, Lordes, and the reste of the nobilitie, together with the people of the whole kyngdome, do assemble. Then take thei hym, to whom the croune is due, either by succession, or by election. And when thei haue set hym vp in a throne of Golde: thei all fall doune on their knees, and together with one voice crie out a loude, aftre this maner. We require the, yea, we will and commaunde the, to take the rule and gouernaunce of vs. He answereth, if ye will haue me doe so, then must ye of necessitie be redy to do whatsoeuer I commaunde ye. To come when I calle ye, to go whether so euer I sende ye, to slea whom so euer I commaunde ye, without staieng or stackering. And to put the whole kingdome and rule in my handes, when thei haue aunswered, we are content: Saieth he againe, from hencefurthe then the speache of my mouth, shalbe my swearde. To this the people yealde with greate shoutes, and reioisynges. In the meane while the princes and the nobles, taking the king out of his throne, spread abrode on the grounde a piece of felte: vpon the whiche, thei cause hym in simple sorte to sitte doune, and thus saie to hym. Looke vp, and remembre GOD aboue the. And now looke doune also, and behold this felt vndre the. If thou gouerne welle, thou shalte haue all euen as thou wouldest wisshe it. But if contrary wise, thou shalt so be broughte doune againe, and so nighe be bereued of all: that thou shalte not haue so muche, as this poore felte left the, whervpon thou sittest. This ones saied, thei sette in to hym, of all his wiues the dierest derlyng. And liftyng vp the felte alofte, haile hym by the name of Emperour, and her by the name of Empresse. Then, come there presentes streight from al countries, and peoples of his dominion: and all the Threasoures that the kyng, his predecessour lefte, are brought him. Of the whiche he giueth giftes to al the princes and high estates: commaundyng the reste to be kepte for himself, and so dissolueth the Parlament as it ware.
In his hande and power is then altogether, no manne can: or though he can, he dare not saie this is myne, or this is his. No man maie dwelle in any part of the lande, but in that wherevnto he is appoincted. The Emperour hymself appoincteth the Dukes: the Dukes, the Millenaries: the Millenaries, the Centurianes: and they the Disniers: and the Disniers the residewe. The seale that he vseth hath this superscription. GOD in heauen, and Chutchuth Cham in earth, the force of God, and Emperour of all menne. He hath fiue armies of greate multitude and force: and fiue chiefteines, by whom he subdueth all that stande against hym. He hymself neuer speaketh to any foreine ambassadours, nor admitteth them to his presence, as is aboue saied: excepte bothe thei and their giftes (without the whiche specially thei maie not come) bee purified by the ordenarie women. The Kyng aunswereth by another mannes mouthe. And the persone by whome he aunswereth, be he neuer so honourable, for the tyme that he becommeth the kynges mouthe, kneleth on his knees and giueth so diligent care, that he swarueth not from the Kyng in one woorde. For it is not lawefull for any manne, to chaunge the kynges woordes: ne for any man in any wise, to replie against suche sentence as he giueth. He neuer drincketh in open presence, but some body first sing to hym, or plaie vpon some instrumente of Musicque.
The gentlemen and menne of honour when thei ride, haue a phannell borne afore them, on a Iauelines ende, to kiepe awaie the Sonne. And as it is saied, the women likewise. These ware the maners and facions of the Tartarres, for a two hundred yeres paste.
The Georgians, whom the Tartarres aboute the same tyme did subdue: ware Christians, aftre the fourme of the Greke Churche. Thei ware neighbours to the Persians. Their dominions stretched out a great length, from Palestine in Iewrie to the mounteignes called Caspij. Thei had eightene Bishopries: and one Catholicque: that is to saie, one generall bishoppe, whiche was to them, as our Metropolitane to vs. At the firste thei ware subiecte to the Patriarche of Antioche. Menne of greate courage and hardinesse. Thei all shaued their crounes: the Laietie square, the Clercques rounde. Their women (certeine of theim) had the ordre of Knighthode, and ware trained to the warres. The Georgianes when thei ware sette, ordered, and raunged in the fielde, and ware at poinct to ioyne the batteill: vsed to drincke of a gourdfull of strong wine, aboute the bigguenes of a mannes fiste. And to sette vpon their ennemies: muche amended in courage.
Their Clercques, whiche we calle the Spiritualtie, mighte vse bothe Simonie and vsurie at their wille. There was continuall hatred betwixte Tharmenians and them. For the Armenians ware also Christians, before the Tartarres had subdued the Georgianes and them. But thei differed in many thinges, from the belief and facions of the true Churche. Thei knewe no Christemas daie, no vigilles, nor the fowre quartre festes, whiche we call Embryng dales. Thei fasted not on Easter euen, because (saie thei), that Christ rose that daie aboute euen tide. Vpon euerie Saturdaie, betwixte Easter and Whitsontide, thei did eate flesshe. Thei ware greate fasters, and beganne their Lente thre wekes afore vs: and so streightly fasted it, that vpon the Wednesdaie and Fridaie, thei neither eate any kinde of fisshe, ne aughte wherin was wine, or oile. Belieuing that he that drancke wine on those twoo daies: synned more then if he had bene at the stewes with a whore. On the Monedaie thei absteined from all maner of meate. On Tewsdaie and Thursdaie, thei did eate but one meale. Wedensdaie and Fridaie, nothyng at al. Saturdaie and Sondaie, thei eate flesshe and made lustie chiere. Throughe their whole Lente, no manne said Masse but on Saturdaies and Sondaies. Nor yet on the Fridaies throughout the whole yere: for thei thought then, that thei brake their fast. Thei admitted to the houseale, aswell children of two monethes olde, as all other indifferently. When thei went to Masse, thei vsed to put no watre in the wine. Thei absteined from Hares flesshe, Beaws flesshe, Crowes, and suche other as the Grekes did, and Iewes do. Their Chalices ware of Glasse, and of Tree. Some said Masse without either albe or vestement, or any maner suche ornament. Some onely with thornamentes of Deacon or Subdeacon. Thei ware all busie vsurers, and Simonites: bothe spirituall and Temporall, as the Georgianes ware. Their priestes studied Sothesaieng and Nigromancie. Their Spiritualtie vsed Iunckettyng oftener then the Laietie.
Thei maried, but aftre the death of the wife, it was not lawefull for the housebande to marie againe, nor for the wife, aftre the death of the housebande. If the wife ware a whore, the Bisshoppe gaue hym leaue to put her awaie, and marie another. As for the fire of Purgatorie thei knewe nothing of it. Thei denied also verie stifly, that there ware two natures in Christe. The Georgianes saied that thei swarued from the truthe of Christes Religion, in thirtie poinctes or articles.
36 From the Saxon, meaning a dream. See Bailey’s Dict., London, 1737.
The lande, whiche now is called Turcquie: hath on Theaste Armenia the more, and ronneth endelong to the Sea of the Cilicians: hauyng on the Northe, the Sea named Euxinus. There are in it many countries conteined. As Lichaonia, whose heade citie is Iconium. Cappadocia with her heade citie, named Cesarea. Isauria, whiche hath for the chief citie Seleucia. Licia, whiche now is called Briquia. Ionia: now called Quisquoun, in the whiche standeth Ephesus. Paphlagonia, and in it Germanopolis. And Leuech: that hath for the heade Citie Trapezus. All this countrie that now is called Turcquie, is not enhabited by one seuerall nacion, but there be in it Turcques, Grekes, Armenians, Saracenes, Iacobites, Nestorians, Iewes and Christians. Whiche liue for the moste parte, acording to the Tradicions and Ordenaunces, that Mahomet the counterfeict Prophete, gaue vnto the Saracenes (a people of Arabie) the yere of our Lorde and Sauiour Iesus Christe. vi. hundred and. xxix. A manne whome I can not telle whether I maye calle an Arabiane or a Persian. For ther be aucthorities of writers on either behaulfe. His father was an idolastre aftre the maner of the heathen. His mother an Ismalite leaning to the lawe of the Iewes. And whilest in his childehode, his mother taught him aftre one sorte, and his father aftre another: thei printed in hym suche a doubtfull belief, that when he came to age he cleaued to neither. But as a manne of subtyle and guilefull witte, aftre what time he had bene longe conuersaunte amongest menne of the Christian religion: he draue a drifte, deuised out of both lawes (the olde and the newe) how he mighte notably enfecte the worlde.
He said the Iewes did wickedly to denie Christe to be borne of the virgine Mary, seinge the prophetes (men of great holinesse, and enspired with the holy ghost) had foreshewed the same, and warned men of many yeres passed to looke for him. Contrariwyse he said to the Christians thei ware very fonde to beleue that Iesus, so dierly beloued of God, and borne of a virgine, would suffre those vilanies and tormentes of the Iewes.
Martinus Segonius Nouomontanus, in his booke of the Sepulchre of Christe our king, writeth that the Turkes, and Saracenes by an auncient opinion receiued from Machomet: do laughe Christian menne to skorne, that seke thether with so greate reuerence. Sayeng that Christ the prophet of all prophetes endewed with the spirite of God, and voyde of all earthly corruption: had there no sepulchre in very diede, for that he being a spirituall body conceiued by the breathe of the holy ghost coulde not suffre, but should come againe to be iudge of the Gentiles: This saieth Segonius, and many other thinges sounding to like effecte: whiche the Mahometeines are wonte to throwe out against the Christians, bothe foolisshely and wickedly. When this counterfeicte prophet had saused his secte with these wicked opinions: he gaue them his lawe, and sorte of religion. Against the whiche lesse any man of righte iudgemente should aftrewarde write or dispute (as against a pestilent and filthie perswasion) he wrote a lawe in his Alcorane that it shoulde be deathe to as many as should reason or dispute vppon it. Wherby he euidentlie declared, that ther was nothing godly or goodly therin. For why shoulde he elles haue so raked it vp in the ashes, and forbidden it to be examined: so that the people coulde neuer come to knowledge what maner of thinge it is that thei beleue in. In the giuing of his lawe, he vsed muche the counselle and helpe of the moncke Sergius: of the wicked secte of the Nestorianes. And to the ende it might please the more vniuersally: he patched it vp together with peces of all maner of sectes. He thoughte it good to sette out Christe with the beste, affirminge that he was a manne excelling in all holinesse and vertue. Yea he extolled him to a more heigth then was appliable to the nature of man, calling him the woorde, the spirite, the soule of GOD, borne out of a virgines wombe, whome he also with many wondrefull praises magnified. He confirmed with his consente, the miracles, and story of the gospel, as farre as it varieth not from his Alcorane.
The Godspelles said he ware corrupte by the disciples of the Apostles. And ther fore it behoued his Alcorane to be made, for to correcte and amende them. Thus fauning into fauour with the Christians, he would haue bene christened of Sergius. Then to procure, and moue other also to fauour his procedinges: he denied with the Sabellians the Trinitie. With the Manicheis he made two goddes. With Eunomius, he denied that the father and the sonne ware equal. With Macedonius he said that the holy ghoste was a creature, or substaunce created. With the Nicholaites He allowed the hauinge of many wiues at ones. He allowed also the olde testament. Althoughe sayd he, it were in certain places faultie. And these fondenesses did he beswiete with a wondrefull lure of the thinges that menne in this lyfe mooste desire. Lettinge louse to as many as helde of him, the bridle of al lechery and luste. And for that cause doth this contagious euil sprede it self so wide into innumerable contries. So that if a man at this day compare the nombre of them that are by him seduced, with the other that remaine in the doctrine of faithe: he shal easeli perceiue the great oddes, ware it but herin. That wher Europe alone, (and not al that by a great deale) standeth in the belief of Christe: almoste all Asie, and Aphrique, yea and a greate pece of Europe standeth in the Turkisshe belief of Mahomete.
The Saracenes that firste receiued the brainesicke wickednesse of this countrefeicte prophete, dwelte in that parte of Arabia, that is called Petrea: wher it entrecommuneth with Iewry on the one side, and with Egipt on the other. So named of Serracum, a place nere vnto the Nabatheis, or rather as thei woulde haue it them selues, of Sara, Abrahams wife.
Wherupon thei yet sticke faste in this opinion, that thei onely of al men are the lawfull heires of Goddes beheste. Thei gaue themselues to tilthe, to cattle, and to the warres. But the greater parte to the warres. And therefore at what time they ware hired of Heraclius in the warres againste the Persians: when he had gotten the victory, and thei perceiued them selues to be defrauded by him: kindled with the angre of the villanye thei had done vnto them, by the counsell and persuasion of Mahomet (who tooke vppon him to be their captaine) thei forsoke Heraclius. And going into Siria, enuaded Damasco. Wher when thei had encreased them selues bothe in nombre, and purueiaunce necessary for them, thei entred into Egipte. And subdued firste that: then Persis, then Antioche, and then Ierusalem. Thus their power and fame daily so encreaced, and grewe: that men muche feared, that any thing afterwarde shoulde be able to resiste them. In the meane season, the Turkes: a ferce and a cruell people, of the nacion of the Scithiens, driuen out by their neighbours fro the mountaines called Caspij, came downe by the passage of the mounte Caucasus, firste into Asia the lesse, then into Armenia, Media, and Persis. And by stronge hande wanne all as they came. Against these the Saracenes went forth as to defende the bordres of their gouernaunce. But forasmuche as this newecome power was to harde for them, the Saracenes within a while felle into such despaire of their state: that vppon condicion that the other would receiue Mahometes belief: thei ware content thei shold reigne felowlike together with them, in Persis. Wherto when thei had agreed, it was harde to saye whether of the peoples had receiued the greater dammage. The Saracenes, in yelding to them the haulf right of their kingdome: or the other, whiche for coueteousnes thereof yelded them selues to so rancke, and wicked a poyson of all vertue and godlynes.
One bonde of belief then so coupled and ioyned them: that for a space it made to them no matier whether ye called them all by one name, Saracenes, or Turkes. But nowe as ye se, the name of the Turkes hath gotten the bettre hande, and the other is out of remembraunce. This people vseth moe kindes of horsemen then one. Thei haue Thimarceni, that is to saye Pencioners, aboute a foure skore thousande. These haue giuen vnto them by the kinge, houses, villages, and Castles euery one as he deserueth, in the steade of his wages or pencion. And thei attende vppon the Sensacho, or capitaine of that quarter, wher their possessions lye. At this daye the Turkes are deuided into two armies: the one for Asie, and the other for Europe. And either hath a chiefteine, at whose leading thei are. These chiefteines in their tongue be called Bassay. Ther are also another sorte muche lyke to our aduenturers, that serue withoute wages, called Aconizie. And these euer are spoiling afore when the campe is yet behynde. The fiueth parte of their butine is due vnto the king. And these are aboute a fourty thousande. Their thirde sorte of horsemen is deuided into Charippos Spahiglauos, and Soluphtaros. The beste, and worthiest of these, are the Charippie: of an honourable ordre of knighthode, as it ware for the kinges body. And those be euer about him, to the nombre of eyghte hundred, all Scythians and Persians, and elles of none other kinde of menne. These, when niede is, being in the sighte of the kinge: fight notably, and do wondrefull feates on horsebacke. Spahy, and Soluphtary be those whiche haue bene at the kinges bringing vp from their childehode, to serue his filthy abhominacion. And when thei are come to mannes state, thei marye at the kynges pleasure: And be enriched both with dowery of their wife, and a stipende. These for the moste parte serue for embassadours, deputies, lieutenauntes and suche other dignities, and are nexte vnto the kinge on bothe sides of him, when he goeth any whether as a garde. Thei are in nombre a thousande and thre hundred.
Among the footemen are three sortes, Ianizarie, these be chosen all the Empire ouer, of xii. yeres of age, or there aboute, by certein that haue Commission for the purpose: And are for a space enstructed in the feactes of warre, in commune schooles. And then aftrewarde are thei chosen into souldie, and haue giuen them a shorter garmente, and a white cappe, with a tarfe tourned vpwarde. Their weapon is a Targette, a Curtilase, and a Bowe. Their office is to fortifie the campe, and to assaulte cities. Thei are in nombre aboue twentie thousande.
The seconde sorte are called Asappi, and are all footemen of light harnesse, weaponed with swearde, target, and a kinde of long Iauelines, wherewith thei slea the horses of their enemies, in the skirmishe and battaile. These, to be knowen fro the Ianizaries, weare redde cappes. These are appoincted in nombre, accordyng as the case shall require. But thei are euer at the leaste fouretie thousande. When the warres are finished, for the whiche thei ware hired: these are no longer in wages. Tharmie roialle hath about two hundred thousande armed menne, beside a greate rable of footemen aduenturers, that take no wages, and suche other as be called out of Garrisons. And amonge these, Pioners and Cookes, Carpenters, Armourers, and suche other as thei must niedes haue to make the waye, wher the place is combresome: to dresse victualles, to amende harnesse, to make bredges ouer floudes, to trenche aboute their ennemies, to plante battries, make Ladders, and suche other thinges necessarie for the siege. Ther foloweth the armie also, sondrye sortes of money Masters: some for lone, some for exchaunge, some to buy thinges. And sondrie sortes of occupiers, such as be thought nedeful in such cases.
But there is nothing in all that nacion more to be marueiled at, then their spiedinesse in doeyng of thinges: their constantnes in perilles, and their obedience and precise obseruinge of all commaundementes. For the least fault, of goeth the heade. Thei passe ouer raginge floudes, mounteignes and rockes: roughes and plaines, thicke and thinne, if thei be commaunded. Not hauing respecte to their lyfe, but to their rulers. No men maie awaie with more watche, no men with more hongre. Among them is no mutinyng, no vproures, no sturres. In theyr fyght thei vse no cries, not shoutes, but a certeine fiercenes of brayeng. Thei kepe suche precise scilence in the night, through out their campe: that thei wil rather suffre such as they haue taken prisoners, to run their waie, then to make any sturre. Of all the peoples at this daie, thei onely doe warre, acording to the ordre of armies. So that no manne niedeth to meruayle how it cometh that no people this two hundred yeare and aboue, haue had like successe vnto them. Yea, it may truely be sayd, that excepte it be by some plague or murreyn, or discorde among them selues, they can not be subdued. The apparail that the souldiours do vse, is most comely and honeste. In their sadles and bridles, there is neither curiositie, ne yet superfluitie. No man emong them weareth his Armour, but when niede is to fight. They carry their harnesse behynde theim, at their backes. They vse neither banner, standerde, ne flaggue: but certein Iauelins that haue streamynge out fro the toppe, diuers coloured thriedes, by the whiche euery hande knoweth his capiteine. Thei vse a dromme and a fiphe, to assemble their Bandes, and to sturre them to the batteile. When the batteile is done, all the armie is presented to the Regestour (whiche is some one of the nobles) bothe that it maye bee knowen who is slain, and what nombre: and that newe may be entred in their places. In all assemblies and mietinges, feaste, or other: thei praie for their souldiours, and menne of warre. But specially aboue all other, for those that haue suffred death for the commune quarelle of their countrie: calling them happie, fortunate, and blessed, that thei yelded not vp their liues at home, amidde the lamentacions and bewailynges, of their wiues and children, but loste them, abrode, amonge the shoutes of their enemies, and the ratling of the Harneis, and Launces. The victories of their forefathers and eldres, thei put into Balade, and sing theim with greate honour and praises: for that thei thinke the courages of the souldiours and menne of warre be muche quickened, and kindled thereby.
Their dwelling houses are communely of timbre and claie, very fewe of stone: for of them are the noble mennes houses their temples, and Batthes. And yet are there amonge the communes, men able of them self alone, to set furthe an whole armie, furnisshed at all poinctes. But because thei are naturally giuen to sparing and to abhorre all sumptuousenesse, embrasing a lowe and simple state: thei wel beare this voluntarie pouertie, and rude homelinesse. For this cause also, doe thei not set by any kinde of Painters Imagerie. As for the other imagerie of coruen grauen, or molten worke, thei do so hate and abhorre: that they call vs Christians for delighting so muche in them, verie Idolatours and Image worshippers. And do not onely so calle vs, but wil earnestly argue, that we are so in dede. Thei vse no Seales to their Lettres, of what sorte so euer thei be, the kynges or other. But they credite the matier, assone as thei haue red the superscription, or heard the name of the sender. Thei occupie no belles, nor suffre not the Christianes that dwelle among them to do. Thei game not for money, or any valewe elles. And if it fortune that any manne be founde to do, in many sundrie wise thei reuile him, and baite him with shames and reproche.
No man among them, of what degree or dignitie so euer he be: requireth forme chaire, stoole, or other kinde of seate to sitte vpon. But foldinge bothe him selfe and his clothes, aftre a mooste comely sorte: rucketh downe vpon the grounde, not muche vnlike to the sitting of our gentlewomen ofte times here in Englande. The table wherupon thei eate, is for the mooste parte of a Bullockes hide, or a Hartes skinne. Not dressed, but in the heare, facioned rounde, beyng a fowre or fiue spanne ouer, and so set rounde about on the bordre, or verge, with ringlettes of iron: that putting a couple of stringes throughe the ringes, it maye be drawen together, and shutte and opened like a purse. House, or Churche, or any other place wher they entende to sitte, no man entreth with his shoes on. For it is compted a very dishonest and vnmanerly facion, to sitte shoed. Wherfore they vse a maner of slippe shooes, that may lightly be putte of and on. The place where thei sitte, either at home, or at Churche, is in some place matted, and in some place ouerspred with course woollen Carpette. And some places also, either for the lowenes, moistenes, or vncleanelinesse therof are plancked with boorde.
The garmentes aswell of the menne, as the women, are large and longe, and open afore: that thei may the more honestlie and couertly hide all, when nature craveth to be eased. And in doeyng those niedes, thei take greate hiede, that their face be not into the Southe, as it is when thei praye. As also that thei discouer no priuie parte, that any myghte fortune to see. The menne make water sitting, aswell as the women. For if a man amonges them, ware sene to make water standing: he should be iudged of all, a foole, or an hertique.
From wine (as from a prouoker of al sinne and vnclennesse) thei absteine by their lawe. And yet eate they the Grapes, and drincke muste. Thei also forbeare to eate any thinge, that commeth of the Hogge: or any thinge elles that dieth of sickenesse, or by aduenture vnslain. But any other thinges, being mannes meate, thei refuse not to eate. Thei worshippe the Fridaie, laieng all labour and businesse aparte, with as greate solempnitie and deuocion, as we doe the Sondaie, or as the Iewes doe the Sabboth daie. In euery citie there is one principall or head Churche. In the whiche vppon the Fridaie at aftre Noone, thei all assemble together. And aftre solempne praiers, heare a sermone. Thei acknowledge one God, to whome thei make no like, nor equalle: and Mahomet to be his trustie and welbeloued, Prophete. All the Saracenes are bound to praie fiue times on the daie, with their faces toward the South. And before thei so do, to the ende thei maie be cleane from all filthe of bodie: to wasshe them selues toppe and taile, heade, eares, eyes, nose, mouthe, armes, handes, bealy, colions, legges and fiete. Specially, if he haue bene late at the soile with a woman or stouped on his taile to vnburden his bealie. Except he haue some lette of iournie, or sickenesse. But if he lacke watre to doe this withall (as that sieldome or neuer can happen, for that thei haue in all cities, bathes, ordenarie for the purpose) thei supplie the defaulte with the moulde of fresshe cleane earthe, wherewith thei rubbe ouer their whole bodies. Who is so polluted in any maner wise: suffreth no man before this clensing, to speake with hym, or to see him, if it be possible. Euery yere for the space of fiue wiekes continually together, thei faste al daie as presicely as is possible, bothe from meate, drincke and women. But aftre the sonne is ones doune, till the next daie he riseth, thei neither spare eatyng ne drinckyng, ne pressyng of pappes. In thende of their lente, and againe the sixtieth daie aftre: Thei kiepe their passeouer or Easter, in remembraunce of the Rambe shewed vnto Abraham, to be Sacrificed in the steade of his sonne, and of a certaine nighte in the whiche thei doe beleue that the Alcorane was giuen them from heauen.
Euery yere ones, the Saracenes also are bound of duetie to visite the house of God, in the citie of Mecha: bothe to acknowledge their homage, and to yelde vnto Mohomete his yerely honour at his Sepulchre there. The Saracenes compelle no man to forsake his opinion or belief: ne yet labour so to perswade any countrie to do. Although their Alcorane commaunde theim to treade doune and destroie all menne of the contrary beliue yea them and their prophetes. But through this sufferaunce, ther are to be founde enhabiting in Turkie, peoples of all opinions, and beleue: euery man vsinge suche kinde of worshippe to his God, as to his religion apperteineth. Their priestes do not muche diffre from the commune people, nor yet their churches from their dwelling houses. Yf thei knowe the Alcorane, and the praiours and ceremonies or their lawe, it suffiseth. Thei are neither giuen to contemplacion ne yet schole study. For why thei are not occupied with any churche seruice or cure of soules. Sacramentes haue thei none, nor reliques, nor halowinges of foutes, Aulters, and other necessaries. But prouidinge for their wiues, their children, and householdes, thei occupie their time in husbondrie, marchaundise, huntinge, or some other meane to get the penie, and mainteyne their liuing, euen as the temporall men doe. Ther is nothing forbidden them, nothing is for them vnlawfull. Thei be neither burdoned with tillage, ne bondage. Thei be muche honoured of al men, for that thei are skilfull in the ceremonies of the lawe, teache them to other, and be the gouernours of the churches.
They haue many schooles and large, In the which great nombres are taught the lawes there giuen by kinges, for the ciuile gouernance and defence of the Realme. Of the whiche some are afterwarde sette fourth to be men of the churche, and some to be temporalle officers. Their spiritualtie is deuided into many and sondry sortes of religions. Of the whiche some liue in the wooddes and wyldernes shonnyng all companye. Some kiepe open hospitalitie in cities, and yet liue by almose them selues. These if they lacke meate to refreshe the niedy straunger and pelligrine, yet at the least waie they giue him herbour and lodgyng. Other, roumyng the cities vp and downe and caryeng alway in bottles faire watre and fresshe, if any man be disposed to drinke, vnasked they willingly proffre it him, and refuse not to take, if he for their gentlenesse offre aught vnto them agayn. Otherwise they craue nothyng, but in al their woordes, gesture, behauour, and diedes: shewe theim selues aungelles raither then menne. And euery one of these hath one knowledge or other, of difference from the reaste. The Saracenes or Turkes are very precise executours of Iustice. Who so committeth bloudshed: hath in like sorte his owne shedde againe. Taken in adultery, both parties are streight without mercy stoned to deathe. Thei haue also a punisshement for fornication, whiche is to the manne taken with the diede, foure score ierkes or lasshes with a skourge. A thief for the first and the seconde time, escapeth with so many stripes. But at the thirde time, hathe his hande cut of, and at the fourthe his foote. He that endamageth any manne: as the losse or hinderaunce shalbe valewed, so muste he of force recompence. In claiming of goodes, or possessions, the claimer muste proue by witnesse that the thing claimed is his: and the denier shalbe tried by his othe. Witnesses they admitte none, but persones of knowen honestie, and suche as mighte be belieued withoute an othe. Thei haue also certeine spiefaultes ordinarilye appoincted (muche like to our Sompnours) that spie in euery shiere for suche as be necligent, and let slippe suche oraisons and seruice as thei be bounde to. Those if thei fortune to finde them: do thei punishe aftre this maner. Thei hange a borde about their neckes, with a great many of foxe tailes, and togginge them vp and downe the stretes: all ouer the citie, thei neuer lette them go vntyll they haue compounded by the purse. And in this also nothing vnlike to our Sompnours. It is lawfull for no manne, beinge come to mannes state, to liue vnmaried. It is compted amonge them as lawfull to haue iiii. wiues, as it is amonge vs to haue one. Marie what soeuer is aboue this nombre (as thei may if thei liste, and be able to kepe them, no degree excepted, but mother and sister, marie a hundred) thei are not iudged so lawfulle. The children that thei haue bothe by the one, and the other haue equalle porcion in the fathers enheritaunce. Sauing that ii. women children are compted in porcion but for one man childe. Thei haue not ii. of their wiues together in one house, ne yet in one citie. For the busines, and disquietinges that might happen therby, but euery wife in a seuerall towne. The housebandes haue libertye to put them away thrise, and thrise to take them againe. But yet when he hath ones putte her awaie, if any manne haue taken her, and she lust to abide with hym, she maie.
Their women are moste honestlie appareiled. And vpon their heades doe vse a certeine attire, not muche vnlike the veluet bonette of olde Englande: wherof the one lappe so hangeth vppon whiche side semeth her good: that when she is disposed to go out of the doores, or to come amongest menne within the house, she maie hide therwith by and by her whole face, sauyng her eyes.
The Saracenes woman, neuer dare shewe her self wher there is a company of menne. To go to the marchate to occupy byeng or sellyng in any wise: is not syttyng for their women. In the head church they haue a place farre a part fro the men: so close that no manne canne looke into them. Into the which notwithstandyng it is not laufull for euery mans wyfe to entre: but for the nobilitie onely. Ne yet for them neyther, but on Friday, at the onely houre of noone praier: whiche as I haue aforesayd, is kept amonge them high and holy.
To see a man and a woman talke together ther, in the open strete or abrode: is so straunge, and so vnwonte a thing, that in a whole yere it skante happeneth ones. For a man to sitte with his wyfe in open sighte, or to ride with any woman behinde him: amongest them ware a wondre. Maried couples neuer dally together in the sighte of other, nor chide or falle out. But the menne beare alwaies towarde the women a manly discrete sobrenes, and the women, towarde them a demure womanlie reuerence. Greate menne, that cannot alwaie haue their wiues in their owne eye, appoincte redgelinges, or guelte menne to awaite vppon them. Whiche waite them in diede so narrowlye, that it ware impossible for any man beside the housebande to speake with the wyfe vnsene: or the wyfe by any stealthe to false her trouth and honestie. Finally the Saracenes do so full and whole beleue their Mahomete and his lawes: that thei doubte no whitte, but the kepers of them shall haue euerlasting blessednesse. That is to saye, after their opinion, a paradise of pleasure, a gardein plotte of delighte, full of swiete rindles of Christalline watre. In whose botomes the grauelle, popleth like glisteryng golde. The ayre alwaie so attempre and pure, that nothyng can be more swiete, more pleasaunte, nor healthsome. The grounde couered and garnisshed with natures Tapesserie, neither lacking any colour that pleasaunte is to the eye, or sauour that maie delight the nose. Birdes syngyng with suche armonie, as neuer mortalle eare heard. Briefly flowyng in all pleasure that any harte can aftre thincke. Disshes for the mouthe, of all deinties. All maner of Silkes, Veluettes, Purples, Skarlettes, and other precious apparelle. Godly younge damoselles, with graie rowlyng eyes, and skinne as white as Whales bone, softe as the Silke, and breathed like the Rose, and all at their becke. Vesselles of siluer and golde. Angelles for their Butlers that shall bryng theim Milke in Goblettes of golde, and redde wine in siluer. But contrariewise, thei threaten vnto the breakers of them, helle, and euerlastyng destruccion. This thei also beleue, that be a manne wrapped in neuer so many synnes, yet if at his death, he beleue vpon God, and Machomete, he shalbe saued.
Christe Iesu, the eternalle and verie sonne of thalmightie father, the seconde persone in the holie inseparable, equalle, and euerlastyng Trinitie: Of a sette purpose, and spiritualle secrete, not reuealed from the beginning of tyme, and aboue mannes capacitie: was by the meane of the holy ghost, conceiued and borne manne. In Iewrie, of a Virgine, of the stocke of Dauid, a thousande fiue hundred, and twentie yeres gone37. To sette vs miserable, and vnhappie menne on foote againe, whiche ware in Adam and Eue, by the sinne of disobedience ouerthrowen. And to bryng vs againe, vnto our heauenlie natiue countrie, from the whiche we haue by so many ages, for that presumpcion bene banished. Finally, to repaire and supplie in heauen againe ones, the ruine and fal of those spirites, whiche a space afore our creacion, ware thurste doune fro thence. For the whiche purpose, we chiefly ware made. This Iesus, from thirtie yeres of age, vntill thirtie and fowre (in the whiche, throughe the maliciousnes of the Iewes, he suffred on the galowe tree) traueillyng all Iewrie ouer: first moued and exhorted the Iewes, and then other peoples, from the olde Lawe of Moses, and their wicked Image worshippe, to his newe ordenaunce and trade. And as many as would folowe, and doe aftre hym, he called theim his scholers or disciples. Out of the whiche, he gaue vnto xij. that he had specially chosen, Commission aftre his death (when he had appered to them on liue again, as he had forwarned them that he would) to go as Legates, or Embassatours into the whole world, and to preache vnto all creatures, what so euer thei had sene or learned of him. Simon Petre (to whom longe afore he had surrendred the gouernaunce and chiefteinshippe of his Church, as in reuercion aftre him) when aftre the comyng of the holy ghoste some wente into one coste, and some into another, euery manne his waie, as thei ware allotted and commaunded: came first vnto Antioche. And there setting vp the first and chief chaire of the Churche, kepte a counsaille with the other Apostles, whiche often tymes came to hym. In this Counsaille among other thinges it was decreed, that asmany as should receiue, and cleaue vnto the doctrine, and righte perswasion of Christes godlines: should fro thence furthe be called Christianes. This Seate of superioritie, beyng afterwarde translated to Rome: bothe he and his Successours, tooke it for their chief charge and businesse, to put the rude and rawe secte of their Christe, and the folowers of the same, in some good ordre and trade of gouernaunce. Bothe aftre the manor of Moses Lawe (whiche Christe came not to breake, but to consummate and finishe) and the state of the Romain gouernaunce, the Greke, and Egipcian: and also by paterne of the Ceremonies, obseruances, lawes, and ordenaunces Ecclesiasticalle and Temporalle, of many other peoples: But specially aftre the doctrine, of Christe Iesu, and the woorkyng of the holy ghoste, to bring them in to frame and facion. When thei ware entred in the mattier: As thei sawe that men not emong the Hebrues alone, but emong other peoples also, ware diuided into Ecclesiasticalle and Temporalle Spiritualtie and Laietie: and eche of them in mooste goodly wise, into their dignities and degrees (The Romain Emperour then being gouernour of the whole worlde alone) to haue Consulles, Fathers or Senatours: at whose becke all thinges ware deuised and doone: And in the residewe of the earthe to bee many Kynges, many Dukes, Erles, Presidentes, and Deputies of countries, and their Lieutenauntes: Maresshalles of the fielde, and highe Conestables for the communes, Pretours or Prouostes, Standerdbearers roialle, Centurianes, and Disners, Seriauntes, Conestables, Collectours, Serueiours, Porters, Scribes, Listers, and many other persones without office, bothe menne and women. And in the Temples of their Goddes, a Sacrificer roialle, whiche is to saie in effecte, a highe Prieste of the dignitie of a kyng. Archeflamines, Flamines of honour, and other Flamines inferiour and laste in degree their Priestes. And by like ordre emong the Hebrues: an highe Bisshoppe, and interiour Priestes, Leuites, Nazareis, candle quenchers, commaunders of Spirites, Churche Wardeines, and Syngers, whiche wee calle Chantours aftre the Frenche. And among the Grekes: Capiteines, or heades ouer a thousands, ouer an hundred, ouer fiuetie, ouer tenne, and ouer fiue. And that there ware yet beside these, bothe emong the Hebrues, and the Romaines, many couentes, or compaignies of menne and women religious. As Sadduceis, Esseis, and Phariseis emong the Hebrues: Salios, Diales, and Vestalles, emong the Romaines: The moste holy Apostles did all consente, that Petre, and thei that should folowe him in the seate of Rome, should for euermore be called Papa. As who would saie, father of fathers, the vniuersalle, Apostollicalle, moste holy, and moste highe bisshoppe. And that he should at Rome be Presidente ouer the vniuersalle Churche, as the Emperour there, was ruler of the vniuersall worlde. And to matche the Consulles (which ware euer twaine) thei appoincted fowre head Fathers, in the Greke named Patriarches, one at Constantinople, another at Antioche, a thirde at Alexandrie, and the fowrthe at Hierusalem. In the place of the Senatours, thei took the Cardinalles. To matche their kynges, whiche had three Dukes at commaundemente, thei deuised Primates: To whom ware subiecte thre Archebishoppes. So that the Archebishoppe or Metropolitane, standeth in the place of a Duke. For as the Duke had certein Erles or Barones at his commaundemente: so haue the Archbisshoppes, other inferiour Bisshopes at theirs, which also by reason muste countreuaile an Erle. The Bisshoppes coadiutor or Suffragane, came into the Presidentes place. Thordenarie into the Deputies, then did the Officialle matche with the Mareshalle. And with the high conestable for the communes, the Bisshoppes Chauncelour. And for the Pretour or Prouoste, thei sette vp an Archedeacon. In stede of the Centuriane, was a Deane appoincted. And for the Disnere, the Persone or Vicare. For the Aduocates, crepte in the Parisshe Prieste, Soule Prieste, Chaunterie Prieste, Morowe Masse Prieste, and suche other. The Deacon standeth for the Surueiour. The Subdeacon for the Serieaunte. For the two Conestables, came in the two Commaunders of Spirites, called Exorcistæ in the Greke. The Collectours office, was matched with the Churche wardeines. The Porter became the Sexteine. The Chauntour, scribe, and Lister, kiepe stille their name. The Acholite, whiche we calle Benet and Cholet, occupieth the roume of Candlebearer.
All these by one commune name, thei called Clerj, of the Greke woorde Cleros, that is to saie, a Lotte. For that thei ware firste from among the people, so alloted vnto God. Thereof cometh our terme Clerque, and his cosine Clergie. Neuerthelesse, this name Clergie, was not so commune vnto all: but that it siemed moste proprely to reste in the seuen degrees, that the Pope of Rome vsed for his Ministres, when he saied Masse in persone him self. That is to saie, the Bishoppe, the Priest, the Deacon, and subdeacon, the Acholite, and the Chauntour. Vnto euery of these gaue thei in the churche their seueralle dignities officies, and appareile.
To the Bishoppe was giuen aucthoritie, to ordeine and make other Clerckes. To enueile virgines, and to hallow them. [That is to saie, to make Nunnes.] To consecrate their likes, and their superiours also. To laie handes vpon them. To confirme and Bisshoppe children. To hallowe Churches. To put Priestes from their Priesthode: and to degrade theim, when thei deserue it. To kiepe Conuocacions and Sinodes. To make holy oile: to hallowe the ornamentes and vess [Transcriber’s note: gap in text about 3–4 words long. vess(els) . . .?] And to do also other thinges, that the inferiour Priestes doe. To enstructe those that be newly come to the faithe. To Christiane, to make the Sacramente of the Altare, and to giue it to other. To absolue the repentaunte of their sinnes, and to fettre the stubberne more streighte. To shewe furthe the Gospelle. To enioyne all Priestes to shaue their heades in the croune, like a circle of iiij. fingres brode, after the maner of the Nazareis. To kepe their heare shorte, to weare no bearde. And to liue chaste for euer.
Their liuyng onely to rise of the firste fruictes, tenthes, and offringes: and vttrely to be voide of all temporalle and Laiemennes cares and businesse. To be honestlie appareiled, and accordyngly to vse their passe and conuersacion. Onely to serue God and the churche. Diligently, to plye the reading of holy scripture, that they themselues mighte perfectly knowe all thinges perteining to Christian religion, wherin thei are bound to enstructe other. The companies or couentes of religious, aswel men as women: are Benedictines, Preachers, Franciscanes, Augustines, Barnardines, Anthonines, Iohannites, Cisternois, and innumerable other. Whiche al haue their habite, and maner of liuing by them selfe: acordinge to the rule that echeone priuately prescribed to them selues. And liued for the moste parte a solitary life, professing chastitie, pouretie, and perpetualle obedience. And for their solitarines the Greke called them Monarchi. Some of these haue for the heades Abbotes, some Priours: whiche are either subiecte to the Pope onely, or to the bishoppes. Al these vsed coules, much aftre one facion, but in colour diuers, and abstained fro fleshe. The bisshoppes when thei say masse, haue xv. holy garmentes, aftre the maner of Moyses lawe, for the perfection of them. His boatewes, his Amice, an Albe, a Girdle, a Stole, a Maniple, a Tunicle of violette in graine fringed, his gloues, ringe, and chesible or vestimente, a Sudari, a cope, a mitre and a crosse staffe. [Marginal Note: The Latine calleth it a shiepe hooke.] And a chaire at the Aultares ende, wherein he sitteth. Of the whiche, vi. are commune to euery inferiour prieste: the Amice, the Albe, the girdle, the stole, the Maniple, and the vestiment. But ouer, and aboue all these the Pope, by the gifte of Constantine the greate, hath libertie to weare al the ornamentes Imperialle. That is to saye a kirtle of skarlet, a robe of Purple, a sceptre, and a close corone. With the whiche aftre he hath rauisshed him selfe in the vestrie, vppon solempne feastes, when he entendeth to do masse: he commeth forth to the aultare, hauing on the right side a prieste, on the lefte side a Deacon, a Subdeacon going before him with a booke faste shutte, two candle bearers, and an encensour with the censoure in his hande smoking. When he is comen to the griessinges, the stayers, or foote of the aultare: putting of his mitre, he maketh open confession [Marginal note: That is, he saieth confiteor.] of his sinnes together with his company.
That done he goeth vp to the aultare, openeth the booke, lieng vpon the lefte corner of the same, kysseth it, and so procedeth in the Solempnisacion of the Masse. The subdeacon readeth the epistle, and the Deacon the godspelle. Priestes of al degrees, are charged to prayse God seuen times a daie, and to praye with ordenarie oraisons. Towarde the eueninge, euensonge: and compline more late. Matines in the morninge, and incontinente prime, and howres, in ordre of tyme, as thei stande in ordre38 of name. And this humbly before the aultare, if he maye conueniently, with his face towarde the Easte. The pater nostre and the Crede, said thei, onely at the beginning of their seruice, as the commune people do nowe a daies also. Saincte Ierome, at the vrgent request of Pope Damasus, parted out the Psalmes acording to the daies of the wieke. And appoincted for euery houre a porcion of propre psalmes. For the nighte houres on the holy daye, ix. and on the working daye, xii. For laudes in the morning, v. for euensonge as many, and for eche other houre but thre. He also ordeined the Epistles, Godspelles, and other seruice, vsed to be red out of the olde or newe testament, in maner altogether, sauing the note. The Anthemes (which Ambrose, Bysshoppe of Millayne wrate, and endited) Damasus put ordre that the quiere should sing side aftre side, and added to euery psalmes ende. Gloria patri, &c. The lessons and Himpnes that go before eche one of the howres did the counceiles of Thoulouse and Agathone aucthorise. The orisons, the grailes, the tractes, the Alleluya, thoffertorie, the Communions in the Masse, the Anthemes, Versicles, repitions, and other thinges, either songe or redde by nyghte or by daye, to the beautifieng, and praysing of God: did Gregory, Gelasius, Ambrose, and many other holy fathers, deuise, and put furthe, not at one time but at sondry. The Masse (so terme thei the sacrifice) was firste vsed to be done in suche simple sorte, as yet is accustomed, vppon good Friday, and Easter euen, with certeine lessons before it. But then Pope Celestinus put to the office of the Masse. Thelesphorus, Gloria in excelsis: But Hilarius of Pictauia made the Et in terra. Simachus ordeined it to be songue. The Salutacions, which by the terme of Dominus vobiscum, be made seuen tymes in a Masse, ware taken out of the booke of Ruthe, by Clemente and Anaclete, and put in, in their places. Gelasius made vp all the reste to the Offertory, in the same ordre thei be vsed. Excepte the Sequences and the Crede: wherof Nicolas put in the firste, and Damasus the nexte: acordinge to the Sinode of Constantinople. The bidding of the beades, with the collacion that was wonte to be made in the pulpite on Sondaies, and halydaies: raither grewe to a custome by the example of Nehemias, and Esdras, then was by any aucthorised. In this collation at the firste comming vp therof, when so many as ware presente at the Masse did receiue the communion, acording as was ordeyned by a decree: thei that ware at any discorde ware exhorted to concorde, and agremente. And that thei should receiue the sacrament of the aulter cleane from the filthe of sinne, vppon the whiche consideracion at this daye it endeth with confiteor, or an open confession. There ware thei wonte to teache the instrumentes of the olde lawe, and the newe. The ten commaundementes. The xii. articles of our beleue. The seuen sacramentes, holy folkes liues, and Martirdomes, holy dayes, doctrines, and disciplines: vertues, and vices, and what soeuer are necessary beside forthe, for a Christiane to knowe. Gregory linked on the offertorie. Leo the prefaces. Gelasius the greate Canon, and the lesse. The Sanctus blessed Sixtus. And Gregory the Pater noster out of the Gospelle of sainte Mathewe. Martialle the scholer of blessed Peter, deuised that Bysshoppes should gyue their benediction at the Agnus. And as for other inferiour priestes, Innocentius commaunded them to giue the paxe, that is to saye peace. Sergius tacked on the Agnus, and Gregory the poste communion. The closing vp of all with Ite missa est, Benedicamus, Deos gratias: was Leoes inuencion.
The xii. articles of our beleue, whiche the blessed Apostles would euery manne not onely to confesse with mouthe, but to beleue also in harte, are these.
Firste, that ther is one God in Trinitie, the father almighty maker of heauen and earthe. The seconde, Iesus Christe, his onely sonne our Lorde. The thirde, the same beinge conceiued of the holye ghoste, to haue bene borne of the Virgine Marie. The fourthe, to haue suffred vndre Ponce Pilate, to haue bene crucified, deade, bewried, and to haue descended in to helle. The fiueth, to haue risen agayne the thirde daye fro the deade. The sixteth, to haue ascended vp into the heauens, and to sitte on the right hande of God the father almighty. The seuenth, that he shall come fro thence like a triumpher, to iudge the quicke and the deade. The eight, that ther is an holy ghoste. The nineth, that there is an holy churche vniuersalle, the communion of the godly and good. The tenthe, forgiuenesse of sinnes. Thee eleuenth, the rising againe of the flesshe. The twelueth, aftre our departing, life in another worlde euerlasting.
The tenne commaundementes, which God wrate with his owne finger, and gaue vnto the Israelites by Moses, whiche thapostles willed vs also to kiepe. The firste, thou shalte haue none other Goddes but me. The seconde, thou shalte not make any grauen Image, or likenesse of any thing that is in heauen aboue, in the earthe benethe, or in the water vnder the earthe, thou shalt not bowe doune to them, nor worshippe them. The third, thou shalt not take the name of thy lorde God in vaine. The fowrthe, remembre that thou kiepe holie thy Sabboth daie. The fiueth, honour thy father and mother. The sixteth, thou shalte doe no murdre. The seuenth, thou shalte not commit adulterie. The eight, thou shalte not steale. The nineth, thou shalt beare no false witnesse against thy neighbour. The tenthe, thou shalte not desyre thy neighbours home, his wife, his seruaunte, his maide, his Oxe, nor his Asse, nor any thing that is thy neighbours.
The seuen Sacramentes of the churche, which are contained in the fiue laste Articles of our beleue, and commaunded vs by the holie fathers to be beleued.
The firste, diepyng into the water, called Baptisyng, aftre the Greke. This, by canonicalle decree, in time paste was not wonte to be giuen (excepte greate necessitie soner required it) but to those that had bene scholers a space afore, to learne the thinges appertinent to Christendome. Yea, and that aftre thei had bene exceadingly welle enstructed in the faithe: and proufe taken of their profityng, by seuen examinations, which ware made vpon seuen seueralle daies in the Lente, and so ware thei Baptissed vpon Easter euen, and Whitesondaie euen. Vpon whiche daies, thei ware accustomed to hallowe the christening watre, in euery Paroche. But because this specially of all other, is chiefly necessarie vnto euerlasting saluation: leasse any bodie should die without it, thei decreed that assone as the childe was borne, godfathers should be sought for it, as it ware for witnesses or sureties whiche should bryng the childe vnto the Churche doore, and there to stande without. And then the Priest should enquire, before the childe be dieped in the Fonte, whether it haue renounced Sathan and all his pompe and pride. If it beleue certeinely and wholie, all the Articles of the Christiane faithe. And the Godfathers answering, yea: for it, the Prieste breathyng thrise vpon his face, exorciseth it, and catechiseth it. Aftre that, doeth he seuen thinges to the childe in ordre. Firste, he putteth into the mouth hallowed salt. Secondely, he mingleth earthe and his spattle toguether, and smereth the eyes, eares, and nosethrilles of the childe. Thirdly, giuyng it suche name as it shall euer aftre bee called by: he marketh it on the breaste and backe with holie oile, aftre the facion of a crosse. Fourthly, he diepeth it thrise in the Watre, or besprinkleth it with watre thrise, in maner of a crosse, in the name of the holie Trinitie, the father, the sonne, and holie ghoste. In the whiche, name also, all thother Sacramentes are ministred. Fiuethly, weting his thumbe in the holie ointement, he maketh therewith a Crosse on the childes foreheade. Sixthly, he putteth a white garment vppon it. Seuenthly, he taketh it in the hande a Candle brennyng. The Iewes before thei be Christened (by the determinacion of the counsaile holden at Agathone), are cathechised, that is to saie, are scholers at the enstruction of our beleue nine monethes. And are bound to fast fourtie daies: to dispossesse them selues of all that euer thei haue, and to make free their bonde men. And looke whiche of their children thei haue Circumcised, acording to Moses lawe: hym are thei bounde to banishe their companie. No merueile therefore if thei come so vnwillingly to christendome.
Bishopping, whiche the Latines calle Confirmacion, a confirming, a ratifieng, establishyng, auethorisyng, or allowyng of that went before: is the second Sacramente. And is giuen of the Bishoppe onely, before the Aultare in the Churche, to suche as are of growen yeres, and fastyng (if it maie be) aftre this maner. As many as shalbe Confirmed, come all together with euery one a godfather. And the Bishoppe aftre he hath saied one orasion ouer them all, wetyng his thumbe in the holie oile, maketh a crosse vpon eche of their foreheades: In the name of the father, sonne, and holie ghoste. And giueth hym a blowe on the lefte chieke, for a remembraunce of the Sacrament, that he come not for it againe. The godfathers, to the ende the enoilyng should not droppe awaie, or by negligence bee wiped awaie, clappe on a faire filette on the foreheade, whiche ther iudge to be unlawfully taken awaie, before the seuenth daie. The holie fathers estemed this Sacrament so highly, that if the name giuen to the childe at his Christendome, siemed not good: the Bishoppe at the giuyng hereof mighte chaunge it.
The thirde Sacramente is holie Ordres whiche in the firste Churche, was giuen likewise of the Bishoppe, onely in the monethe of Decembre. But now at sixe seueralle tymes of the yere: that is to saie, the fowre Saturdaies in the embre wekes (whiche ware purposely ordeined therefore) vpon the Saturdaie, whiche the Churche menne calle Sitientes, because the office of the Masse for that daie appoineted, beginneth with that woorde, and vpon Easter euen. This Sacrament was giuen onely to menne: and but to those neither, whose demeanour and life, disposition of bodie, and qualitie of minde, ware sufficiently tried and knowen. Aftre the opinion of some, there were seuen ordres, or degrees, wherby the holy fathers would vs to beleue that there ware seuen speciall influences, as it ware printed in the soule of the receiuer, wherby eche one for eche ordre, was to be compted an hallowed manne. Aftre the mindes of other there ware nine. That is to saie, Musicens (whiche encludeth singing and plaieng) Doore kiepers, Reders Exorcistes, Acholites, Subdeacon, Deacon, Prieste and Bishop. And for all this, it is compted but one Sacramente, by the reason that all these tende to one ende, that is to saie, to consecrate the Lordes bodie. To euery one of these did the Counsaile of Toledo in Spaine, appoinete their seueralle liueries, and offices in the Churche. The Dorekepers had the office of our Common Sexteine, to open the churche dores, to take hede to the churche, and to shutte the dores. And had therfore a keie giuen vnto theim, when thei ware admitted to this ordre. The Reader, in signe and token of libertie to reade the Bible, and holie stories, had a greate booke giuen, him. The Exorcistes, serued to commaunde euille sprites oute of menne, and in token therof, had a lesse booke giuen them. The Acholite, had the bearyng and the orderyng of the Tapers, Candelstickes, and Cruettes at the Altare: and therfore had a Candelsticke, a Taper, and two emptie Cruorettes deliuered hym. The Subdeacon, mighte take the offring, and handle the Chalice, and the Patine, carie theim to the Altare, and fro the Altare, and giue the Deacon Wine and water, out of the Cruettes. And therfore the Bishoppe deliuereth hym an emptie Chalice with a Patine, and the Archdeacon one Cruet full of wine, and another full of watre, and a Towelle. To the Deacons, is the preachyng of Goddes Gospelle to the people committed, and to helpe the priest in al holy ministracion. He hath the Gospelle booke deliuered hym, and a towell hanged vppon his one shouldre, like a yoke. The Prieste hath power to consecrate the Lordes bodie, to praie for sinners, and to reconcile them againe to God by Penaunce enioined them. He hath deliuered hym a Chalice with Wine, the Patine, with a singyng cake, a stole vpon bothe shouldres, and a Chesible. What Ornamentes the Bisshoppe hath giuen vnto hym, ye haue heard afore. He maie not be made Bisshoppe, but on the Sondaie about the iii. houre aftre Prime, betwene thoffice of the Masse and the Gospelle: at the whiche tyme twoo Bisshoppes, and a Metropolitane, laie their handes vpon his heade and a booke. The Bisshoppes in the firste Churche, did litle or nothyng diffre from other Priestes, and ware ruled by the commune Counsailes of the Churche, before that dissencion and deuision entred emong the people, causing theim in sondrie sortes, to cleaue vnto sondrie names, euery sorte as thei fortuned to be conuerted and Christened of a sondrie persone. As whom Paule Baptised, thei would be called Paulines. Whom Appollo, Appollonians, Whome Cephas, Cephites, and so of other. To auoide therefore these breaches of concorde, and for an vniformitie, the holy fathers ware driuen to decree and stablish that asmany as should aftreward be baptised, should be called Christianes of Christe. And that ouer euery Countie or Shiere, there should be sette one Prieste or moe, acordyng to the greatnesse of the same, suche as ware best tried. Whiche should haue to name, Ouersears in Englishe: in Greke, Episcopj. Whom we cal Bishopes, by chaungyng of P. into B. and leauing out the E. for shortnes, acordyng to the nature of our tongue. These mighte not then gouerne their Clergie, and other their Diocesans, at their owne pleasure, as thei did before: but acording to the decrees of the Churche of Rome, and the holie Counsailes of the fathers assembled. Then began thei firste (by the suffraunce and helpe of deuoute princes) to deuide all Christendome into Dioceses, and the Diocesse into Conuocacions or Chaptres, and those againe into Paroches, and to set that goodly ordre, that yet continueth, aswell emong the clergie as the laietie. That the parishe should obeie their lawfull Persone, the Persone the Deane: the Deane the Bishoppe: the Bishoppe, the Archebishoppe. The Archebishoppe, the Primate or Patriarche: the Primate or Patriarche, the Legate: the Legate, the Pope: the Pope the generalle Counsaille: the generalle Counsaile, God alone.
For the fourthe Sacramente it is holden, that euery prieste rightly priested, acordyng to the keies of the Churche, hauing an entente to consecrate, and obseruynge the fourme of the woordes: hathe power, of wheaten breade to make the very bodie of Christe, and of wine to make his very bloude.
Christe our Lorde hym selfe, the daye before he suffred, kepte it solemnly with his disciples, and consecrated, and ordeined it continually to be celebrated, and eaten in the remembraunce of him selfe. And about this mattier a man had nede of a great faythe. Firste to beleue the breade to be chaunged into the body, and the wine into the bloude of Christe. Againe thoughe this be done euery daye that yet Christ for all that should growe neuer a whitte the bigger for the making, nor the lesse for the eatinge. Thirdely that the Sacrament being deuyded into many partes, Christ should yet remaine whole in euery cromme. Fourthly that thoughe the wicked eate it, yet should not it be defiled. Fiuethly, that it bringeth to as many euyll as receiue it, death; and to the good euerlasting life. Sixthly that it tourneth not into the nature of the eater to his nourisshemente as other meate dothe: but turneth the eater contrariwise into the nature of it selfe. And yet being eaten, that it is rapte into heauen, vnhurte or vntouched. Seuenthly that in so smalle a syse of breade and wine, the infinite, and incomprehensible Christe, God and manne shoulde be comprehended. Then, that one, and the self same bodye of Christe, at one very instaunte, shoulde be in many places, and of many menne receiued at ones, and in sondrye parcelles. Ninethly that thoughe the bread it selfe be chaunged into the very flesshe of Christe, and the wine into his bloude, that yet to all the sences thei remaine breade and wine, and neither flesshe ne bloud. Further that all these commodities conteined in these verses folowing should happen vnto those that worthely eate it.
It putteth in mynde and kindleth, encreaseth hope, and strengtheneth. Mainteineth; clenseth, restoreth, giues life, and vniteth. Stablissheth beliefe, abates the foode of sinne, and all vnclennes quencheth.
Finally, to be very profitable for the saluacion aswell of those liuyng as deade, for whom it is specially offred by the priest in the Masse. And therefore to haue to name Eucharistia communio.
In the beginning of the Christianne faithe (and yet amonge certeine schismatiques as thei saye) one whole lofe was consecrated, of suche bigguenesse, as when the Priest had broken it in a platter into smalle pieces, it, mighte suffise the whole multitude that ware at the masse to participate of. For in time paste the Christianes came euery day to communicate by a speciall commaundemente, and ordenaunce. Aftrewarde but ones in a wieke and that on the Sonday. But whan it began to be skant well kepte vppon the Sonday neither: then was it commaunded that euery manne should receiue it thrise in the yere, or ones at the leaste, at euery Easter. And that euery Christian manne, when he stode in any daungier of death, beyng whole of minde, should receiue it as a waifaring viande, to staye him by the waye: with as good preparation of bodye and soule, as he possibly mighte.
Matrimonie (whiche is the lawefulle coupling of the manne and the woman) broughte in by the lawe of nature, the lawe of God, the lawe of all peoples, and the lawe ciuille, is the fiueth Sacrament. The holy fathers woulde haue but one mariage at ones, and that not in secrete but with open solemnitie eyther in the churche, or in the churche porche, and so that the priest be called to the matier. Who shold firste examine the man, and then the womanne, whether thei bothe consent to be maried together. Yf thei be agreed (whiche is chiefely in this case requisite) he taking them bothe by the right handes: coupleth them together in the name of the holy and vnseperable trinitie, the father, the sonne, and the holy ghoste. And commaundeth, and exhorteth them that thei alwaye remembring this their coupling of their owne free wille and consent: as longe as they liue, neuer forsake one another but loue and honour one another, be debonaire and buxome one to another, giuing them selues to procreacion, and not to lecherous luste. And that thei honestly and diligently bringe vp, suche children as God sendeth them of theyr bodies. Aftre that he affiaunceth them both with one ringe. And sprinckling holy water vpon them, reacheth them a stole, and leadeth them into the churche, where (yf thei ware not blessed afore) he blesseth them knieling before the altare. The woman hath on a redde fillet or frontelette, and ouer that a white veile, withoute the whiche it is not lawfulle for her fro that daye forwarde, to go oute of doores abrode, or to sitte by any manne. Twelue thinges ther be, whiche the holy fathers woulde haue to barre persons from contracting of matrimonie, and to disseuer them againe, yf thei be contracted. Errour of person, that is to saye, mistaking one for another. A betrowthing vpon a condicion, Consanguinitie or kindred, An open crime, Diuersitie of secte, Force, or constrainte, Holy ordres, a Bonde or former contracte, Commune or open honestie, Affinitie, and Disshabilitie of engendrure.
The sixteth Sacramente is penaunce or repentaunce, giuen of Christe as it ware for a wracke boorde, wherby men are preserued fro drowninge. Eche Christian oughte vndoubtedly to beleue that this consisteth in foure poinctes. To saie, in Repentaunce of our sinnes, Canonicaile confession, Absolucion, and Satisfaction, or amendes. Firste let him sorowe, not with a lighte forthinckinge, but with a moste earneste and bittre repentaunce in the botome of his conscience: for the puritie and innocencie that he had gotten eyther by baptisme or the benefite of former repentaunce, and nowe hathe eftsones loste, and forgone throughe sinne. And let him hope with this repentaunce, to be reconciled to the fauour of God againe. And let him humbly, and truly with his owne mouthe, confesse to a wise prieste, in the steade of God: all those offences wherwith he knoweth him selfe to haue loste his innocencie and clennesse, and to haue prouoked the wrathe of GOD againste him selfe. And let him assuredly beleue that the same prieste, hath power giuen him of Christe (as beinge his vienre, or deputie on earthe) to absolue him of all his sinnes. Finally, for satisfaction or amendes making for the faulte: lette him not with grudginge, but chierfully, and gladly doe, what so euer he shalbe commaunded. Beleuing with vndoubted faith, that he is absolued, and quyte of all, assone as the priest in dewe forme of wordes, hath pronounced the absolucion.
The seuenth, and the laste Sacrament is the laste enoynting, by an oyle that is made to this vse, by the bishope in euery diocesse, by an yerely custome vpon Maundy Thursdaie, like as the chrismatory oyle is. And this by the precepte of sainte Iames the Apostle, and by the ordinaunce of Felix, the fourthe Pope after Sainte Peter: was giuen only to them that laie in dyeng, being of full age, and requyring it. Thei vse to enoynte with a prescripte fourme of wordes; and with often inuocacion of sainetes: those partes of the bodie, wher our fiue wittes or senses: the hearing, seyng, smelling, tasting and touching, beare moste stroke, and with whiche man is iudged chiefely to sinne. That is, the eares, the eyes, the nosthrilles, the mouthe, the handes, and the fete. Whereby the holy fathers would vs to beleue, that there was not onely purchased cleane forgiuenesse of all smaller offences, or venialle sinnes: but also either presente recouerie, or a riper and gentler deathe. All the feastes and holydaies, throughout the yere, which the churche hath commaunded to be obserued and kept: beginne at the Aduente, or approache of Christe our Lorde. Whiche Peter the Apostle instituted to be obserued in Decembre, with fasting and praier, thre wiekes and a haulfe before Christemas, when we close vp the last. viii. daies of that moneth, with greate ioye and feaste. Thei deuided the yere into two and fiuetie wekes, and xii. seueral monthes. The monethes commonly into xxx. daies. The firste daye of Ianuary the churche recordeth how Christe was circumcised acordinge to Moyses lawe. The iii. daye aftre, howe he was worshipped of the thre Sages, with thre sondry presentes: and howe beinge baptissed of Iohn in Iordaine the floude, he laide the foundacion of the newe Lawe. The seconde of Februarie, how his mother vnspotted, obeyeng the maner of her country: brought hym into the temple, and suffred her self to be purified or clensed, whiche we calle churching of childe. In memorie wherof the churche vseth that daye, solempne procession, and halowing of candles, The fiue and twentieth of Marche, how the aungel brought woorde to the virgin Marie, that Christ shoulde be borne of her, being conceyued in her wombe; by the ouershadowing of the holy ghoste. At the whiche time they willed vs to faste the fourtie daies that he fasted him selfe, being with vs vppon earth, and to renewe the remembraunce of his passion, and deathe, which he willingly susteined to deliuer vs fro the yoke and bondage of the deuell. The laste day of that faste, which oftentimes falleth in Aprille, to celebrate the highest featte in althe yere: in remembraunce howe he ouer came deathe, descended into helle, vanquisshed the deuell, and retourned againe on liue, and appeared in glorious wyse vnto his scholers, or disciples. In Maye, how all those his scholers loking vpon him, he by his owne vertue and mighte, stied vp into the heauens. At the whiche time, by thordenaunce of saincte Mamerte, bishoppe of Vienne: there be made ganginges with the lesse Letanies from one Churche to another, all Christendome ouer. In Iune, and somtime in Maie, how the holy ghoste, promised to the disciples, giuen from aboue, appered to them like glowing tongues: and gaue them to vndrestande, and to speake the tonges of al nacions. Theight daie folowing, Trinitie Sondaie. The fiueth daie aftre that, how Christe in his laste supper, for a continualle remembraunce of himself, instituted the moste holsome Sacramente of his bodie and bloud, vndre the fourme of breade and wine leauyng it to be sene and eaten of his. The fiuetenth of Iuly, how the blessed Apostles, acordyng as thei ware commaunded, the twelueth yere aftre the Ascension of their Master into heauen: wente their waies into the vniuersalle worlde, to Preache vnto all people. The departyng of Christes mother out of this life, the fiuetenth daie of Auguste. And her Natiuitie, theight of Septembre. And thone and twentie of Nouembre, how she from, thre yeres of age (at the whiche tyme she was presented to the temple) vntill she was mariage able, remained there seruing God stil a peace. And theight of Decembre, how she was of her parentes begotten, that longe afore had bene barreine. The second daie of Iulie, how Elisabethe passyng the Mounteines, visited her kindeswoman.
There ware also certeine holie daies appoincted to the xii. Apostles. To certeine Martyres, Confessours, and Virgines As the fowre and twentieth of Februarie to saincte Matthie. To saincte Marke the Euangeliste, the xxv. of Aprille. Vpon the whiche daie, Gregorie ordeined the greate Letanies to be songe. The firste of Maie is hallowed for Philippe and Iames the more. The xxix. of Iune, for Petre and Paule: and the xxiiii. of the same, for the Natiuitie of S. Ihon Baptiste. The xxv. of Iuly, for Iames the lesse. For Bartholomewe the fowre and twentie of August. For Mathewe, the one and twentie of Septembre. And the eight and twentie of Octobre, for Simon and Iude. The last of Nouembre, for S. Andrewe. The one and twentie of Decembre, for saincte Thomas. And the vii. and twentie of thesame moneth for Ihon the Euangeliste. The daie before, for Stephin the firste Martire. And the daie aftre for the Innocentes. The tenth of August for sainct Laurence. And the thre and twentie of Aprille, for saincte George. Of all the Confessours, there are no moe that haue holidaies appoincted, but S. Martine and saincte Nicholas. The firste, on the eleuenth of Nouembre: and the other the sixteth of Decembre. Katherine the virgine, the fiue and twentie of Nouembre, and Marie Magdalene the twentie and two of Iuly. There is also vndre the name of saincte Michael alone, the xxix. of Septembre: a holy daie for all blessed Angelles. And one other in commune for all the sainctes, and chosen of GOD, the firste of Nouembre.
Thei would also that euery seuenthe daie, should be hallowed of the Christianes, by the name of Sondaie, as the Iewes doe their Sabboth: restyng from all worldly woorke, and beyng onely occupied with praising of GOD, and the deuine Seruice in the Churched. To learne by the Priestes preachyng, the Gospelle and the commaundementes of our faith. And by what meanes so euer we thinke in our conscience we haue prouoked the wrathe of God against us all the wieke afore: that, this daie to amende, to sette cliere, and aske pardone for. In time past euery Thursdaie also was kepte as the Sondaie. But because we might sieme therein, somewhat to gratifie the Heathen (whiche that daie kepte solempne holie daie, to Iupiter their Idolle) it was laied doune againe. More ouer the clerkes and the people, vsed bothe Thursdaie and Sondaie before Masse, to go rounde aboute the Churche a Procession, and the Prieste, to sprinckle the people with holy watre. Agapitus instituted the one and the other. The Thursdaie, in remembraunce of Christes Ascencion, and the Sondaie, of his glorious Resurrection: which we celebrate fro Sondaie to Sondaie continually, ones euery eight daies. The night afore euery ordenary holidaie or feastefull daie: the whole clergie, and the people, ware bounde to kiepe Vigile in euery churche. That is to saie, to wake all nighte, in deuine seruice and praier. But vpon consideracion of many slaunderous crimes and offences, that ware by diuers naughtie and malicious persones committed, by the oportunitie of the darke: this maner was taken awaie, and ordeined that the daie before the feaste, should be fasted, whiche yet kiepeth stille the name of Vigile. The fathers decreed that the churche in the whole yere should renue the memorie of fiue thynges.
Fro the Sondaie called Septuagesima (because there are seuentie daies, betwiene that and the octaues of Easter) thei would vs to renue the memorie of Christes Fasting, Passion, Death and Bewrialle. The miserable falle also of our first parentes, and those extreme errours of mankinde, by the whiche thei ware ledde awaie fro the knowledge and worshippe of one verie GOD: to the wicked supersticion and honour of Idolles and deuelles. And further, the greuous and intollerable bondage that the people of Israeli suffred vndre the Pharao of Egipte. Vpon whiche consideracion, the bookes of Genesis and Exodus be redde in the seruice of the churche. Whiche sheweth then in all her demeanour, and appareilyng, heauinesse and sorowe.
From the octaues of Easter, to the octaues of Whitsontide, Christes Resurrection, and Ascencion, with the commyng of the holy Ghoste. And together with that, the redempcion, reconclliacion, and atonement of mankinde with God the father, throughe Iesus Christe: and the restoryng againe of the children of Israeli, to the lande of beheste. Wherein was prefigured our reconciliacion and redempcion aforesaid. For that cause is all the seruice out of the newe Testament, and al thinges done with ioie and gladnes.
From the octaues of Whitsontide, till Aduente, xx. wiekes space, and more, thei would haue to bee celebrated the conuersation of Christ here in the worlde, with his miracles and woorkes of wondre. And ouer and beside that, the longe pilgrimage, that mankinde, by longe reuolucion maketh, from one generacion to another, from the tyme of our redempcion, saluacion, and sauing, vntill the laste daie of time. Wherefore duryng this while, vpon consideracion of the diverse happe and hasarde, wherwith the Churche is tossed, like a Shippe in the troubled Seas, she neither greatly reioiceth, ne sorroweth, but redeth grcate chaunge of bookes, oute of the olde and newe Testamente: to the ende she maie walke the warelier, and the bettre wijnde her self out of the stormes, that are ready to assaile her.
From Aduente to Christemas, to remembre the tyme from Moses, to the commyng of Messias. In the whiche mankinde certefied of saluacion, bothe by the lawe and the Prophetes, awaited with moste earneste desires for his comming, and the kingdome that he shold haue. Wherefore thei ordeined that the Prophecies should be redde, and fasting exercised. That the churche the bettre enstructed, and abled by these, mighte the worthelier receiue the Birthe daie of Christ her Lorde (whiche euer falleth the fowerth wieke aftre) and from thens holde on with feaste, and continuall gladnesse vntill Septuagessima. Reioisyng that he was now come: whiche should bee the sauluiour of the worlde. Their oratories Temples, or places of praier (whiche we calls Churches) might not be built without the good will of the Bisshoppe of the Diocese. And when the Timbre was redy to be framed, and the foundacion digged: it behoued; them to send for the Bishoppe, to hallowe the firste corner stone of the foundacion, and to make the signe of the crosse thervpon, and to laie it, and directe, it iuste Easte and Weste. And then might the Masons sette vpon the reste, but not afore. This Churche did thei vse to builde, aftre the facion of a crosse, and not vnlike the shape of a manne. The Chauncelle (in the whiche is conteined the highe Altare and the Quiere) directe full into the East, representeth the heade. And therefore ought to be made somwhat rounde, and muche shorter then the body of the churche. And yet vpon respecte that the heade is the place for the eyes, it ought to be of more lighte, and to bee separate with a particion, in the steade of a necke, from the body of the Churche. This particion the Latine calleth Cancelli; and out of that cometh our terme, Chauncelle. On eche side of this chauncelle peraduenture (for so fitteth it beste) should stand a Turret, as it ware for two eares. And in these the Belles to be hanged, to calle the people to Seruice, by daie and by night. Vndre one of these Turretes, is there commonly a voulte, whose doore openeth into the quiere. And in this are laid vp, the hallowed vesselles and ornamentes, and other vtensiles of the church. We calle it a vestrie. The other parte oughte so to be fitted, that hauing as it ware on eche side an arme, the reste maye resemble the bodye with the fete stretched in breadthe, and in lengthe. On eche side of the bodye the pillers to stonde. Vpon whose coronettes or heades the vaulte or rophe of the churche maye reste. And to the foote beneth, aulters to be ioyned.
Those aulters to be ordrely alway couered with two aulter clothes, and garnisshed with the crosse of Christe, or some little cofre of reliques. At eche ende a canlesticke: and a booke towarde the myddes. The walles to be parieted without, and within, and diuersly paincted. That thei also should haue in euery parisshe a faire sounde stone, made holowe and fitte to holde water: in the whiche the water consecrate for baptisme, may be kept for the christening of children. Vpon the right hande of the highe aulter, that ther should be an almorie, either cutte into the walle, or framed vpon it: in the whiche thei woulde haue the Sacrament of the Lordes bodye, the holy oyle for the sicke, and the Chrismatorie, alwaie to be locked. Furthermore thei woulde that ther should be a pulpite in the middes of the churche, wherein the prieste maye stonde vpon Sondaies and holidayes, to teache the people those thinges that it behoueth them to knowe. The chauncelle to serue onely for the priestes, and clerkes. The rest of the temporalle multitude to be in the body of the church. Separate notwithstonding, the men on the ryghte side, and the women, on the lefte. And eche of them to be sobre and honest in apparelle and behauour. Whatsoeuer is contrary to good facion or Christiane religion, with greate dilligence to shonne it. It was the maner in the first churche, both among men and women, to lette their heare growe, to shewe out their naked skinne, and very litle or nothing to diffre in apparelle. Sainct Peter put first ordre, that women should couer their heades, and menne rounde their heare, and either of them to go in seueralle and sondrye apparelle. Moreouer that to euery churche, shold be laid out a churchyarde, of the grounde adioyning, in the whiche all Christen mennes bodies mighte indifferently bebewried. The same to be consecrate, or halowed by the bishoppe, and to enioye all the priuilegies that the churche may enioye.
The funeralle for the deade, thei kepe not in euery place ylike. Some mourne and kiepe dirige and Masse seuen daies continualle together, some ix. some xxx. or fourtye some, fiuetie, and a hundred, and other a whole yere, wrapped vp in blacke. The counseile of Toledo ordeined that the corps beinge firste wasshed, and then wrapped vp in a shiete, shoulde be caried forthe with singing by menne of his owne condicion or sorte, clerkes by clerkes, and laye menne of laye menne. And aftre what time the priest hath sensed the corps, throwen holy water vppon it, and said certeine prayers, to laye it into the graue with the face vpwarde, and the heade into the Weaste. Then to throwe in the earth again, and in token that ther is a Christian ther bewried, to sette vp a crosse of wodde, garnisshed with yvie, cipres, or laurelle. These be the ordres and facions of the Christiane religion.
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