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As to her perfon, fhe is tall and lean, and very ill fhaped; the hath bad features, and a worfe complexion; the hath a ftinking breath, and twenty ill smells about her befides; which are yet more unfufferable, by her natural fluttishnefs; for the is always loufy, and never without the itch. As to her other qualities, the hath no reputation either for virtue, honefty, truth, or manners and it is no wonder, confidering what her education hath been. Scolding and curfing are her common conversation. To fum up all; fhe is poor and beg.

garly, and gets a forry maintenance by piltering whereever the comes. As for this gentleman, who is now fo fond of her, the ftill beareth him an invincible hatred; revileth him to his face, and raileth at him in all companies. Her houfe is frequented by a company of rogues, and thieves, and pick-pockets, whom the encourageth to rob his henroofts, fteal his corn and cattle, and do bim all manner of mischief. She hath been known to come at the head of these rascals, and beat her lover until he was fore from head to foot, and then force him to pay for the trouble she was at. Once attended with a crew of raggamuffins, fhe broke into his houfe, turned all things topfy-turvy, and then fet it on fire. At the fame time fhe told fo many lies among his fervants, that it fet them all by the ears, and his poor fteward * was knocked on the head; for which I think, and fo doth all the country, that he ought to be anfwerable. To conclude her character: She is of a different religion, being a Prefbyterian of the most rank and virulent kind, and confequently having an inveterate hatred to the church; yet I am fure, 1 have been always told, that in marriage there ought to be an union of minds as well as of perfons.

I will now give my own character; and shall do it in few words, and with modesty and truth.

I was reckoned to be as handsome as any in our neighbourhood, until I became pale and thin with grief and ill ufage. I am still fair enough, and have, I think, no very ill feature about me. They that fee me now, will hardly allow me ever to have had any great share of

* Charles I.

beauty s

beauty; for, befides being fo much altered, I go always mobbed, and in an undrefs, as well out of neglect, as indeed for want of cloaths to appear in. I might add to all this, that I was born to a good eftate, although it now turneth to little account, under the oppreffions I endure, and hath been the true caufe of all my miffortunes.

Some years ago this gentleman taking a fancy either to my perfon or fortune, made his addreffes to me; which, being then young and foolish, I too readily admitted. He seemed to ufe me with fo much tenderness, and his converfation was fo very engaging, that all my conftancy and virtue were too foon overcome; and, to dwell no longer upon a theme that caufeth fuch bitter reflections, I must confefs with fhame, that I was undone by the common arts practifed upon all easy credu lous virgins, half by force, and half by confent, after folemn vows and proteftations of marriage. When he had once got poffeffion, he foon began to play the usual part of a too fortunate lover, affecting on all occafions to fhew his authority, and to act like a conqueror. First, he found fault with the government of my family, which I grant was none of the best, confifting of ignorant illiterate creatures; for at that time I knew but little of the world. In compliance to him, therefore, I agreed to fall into his ways and methods of living. I confented that his fteward fhould govern my houfe, and have liberty to employ an under-fteward *, who fhould receive his directions. My lover proceeded farther, turning away feveral old fervants and tenants, and fupplying me with others from his own house. Thefe grew fo domineering and unreasonable, that there was no quiet, and I heard of nothing but perpetual quarrels; which although I could not poffibly help, yet my lover laid all the blame and punishment upon me; and, upon every falling out, ftill turned away more of my people, and supplied mé in their stead with a number of fellows and dependents of his own, whom he had no other way to provide for. Overcome by love, and to avoid noife and contention, I yielded to all his ufurpations; and finding it in vain to

* Lord Lieutenant.

Cc 3.


refift, I thought it my beft policy, to make my court to my new fervants, and draw them to my interests. I fed them from my own table with the best I had, put my new tenants on the choice parts of my land, and treated them all fo kindly, that they began to love me as well as their mafter. In procefs of time all my old fervants were gone, and I had not a creature about me, nor above one or two tenants, but what were of his chufing; yet I had the good luck, by gentle usage, to bring over the greatest part of them to my fide. When my Jover obferved this, he began to alter his language; and to those who inquired about me, he would anfwer, that I was an old dependent upon his family, whom he had placed on fome concerns of his own; and he began to use me accordingly, neglecting by degrees all common civility in his behaviour. I fhall never forget the speech he made me one morning, which he delivered with all the gravity in the world. He put me in mind of the vaft obligations I lay under to him, in fending me fo many of his people for my own good, and to teach me manners: that it had coft him ten times more than I was worth to maintain me that it had been much better for him if I had been damned, or burnt, or funk to the bottom of the sea that it was but reasonable I should strain myfelf as far as I was able, to reimburse him fome of his charges: that, from henceforward, he expected his word fhould be a law to me in all things: that I must maintain a parish watch against thieves and robbers, and give falaries to an overseer, a confiable, and others, all of his own chufing, whom he would fend from time to time to be fpies upon me: that, to enable me the better in fupporting thefe expences, my tenants fhall be obliged to carry all their goods cross the river, to his own town-market, and pay toll on both fides, and then fell them at half value. But because we were a nafty fort of people, and that he could not endure to touch any thing we had a hand in, and likewife, because he wanted work to employ his own folks, therefore we must fend all our goods to his market juft in their naturals; the milk immediately from the cow, without making it into cheele or butter; the corn in the ear; the grafs as it is mowed; the wool as it cometh from the fheep's back;


and bring the fruit upon the branch, that he might not be obliged to eat it after our filthy hands: that, if a tenant carried but a piece of bread and cheese to eat by the way, or an inch of worsted to mend his ftockings, he should forfeit his whole parcel; and becaufe a company of rogues ufually plied on the river between us, who often robbed my tenants of their goods and boats, he ordered a waterman of his to guard them, whose manner was, to be out of the way untill the poor wretches were plundered; then to evertake the thieves, and seize all as lawful prize to his mafter and himself. It would be endless to repeat a hundred other hardships he hath put upon me; but it is a general rule, that whenever he imagines the smallest advantage will redound to one of his footboys, by any new oppreffion of me and my whole family and estate, he never difputeth it a moment. All this hath rendered me fo very infignificant and contemp. tible at home, that fome fervants, to whom I pay the greatest wages, and many tenants, who have the most beneficial leafes, are gone over to live with him; yet I am bound to continue their wages, and pay their rents: by which means one third part of my whole income is fpent on his eftate, and above another third by his tolls and markets; and my poor tenants are fo funk and impoverished, that inftead of maintaining me fuitably to my quality, they can hardly find me cloaths to keep me warm, or provide the common neceffaries of life for themselves.

Matters being in this pofture between me and my lover; I received intelligence, that he had been for fome time making very prefling overtures of marriage to my rival, untill there happened fome mifunderstandings between them. She gave him ill words, and threatened to break off all commerce with him. He, on the other fide, having either acquired courage by his triumphs over me, or fuppofing her as tame a fool as I, thought at first to carry it with a high hand; but hearing at the fame time, that the had thoughts of making fome private proposals to join with me against him, and doubting, with very good reason, that I would readily accept them, he feemed very much difconcerted. This I thought was a proper occafion to fhew fome great example of generofity and


love; and fo, without further confideration, I sent him word, that hearing there was like to be a quarrel between him and my rival, notwithstanding all that had paffed, and without binding him to any conditions in my own favour, I would ftand by him, against her and all the world, while I had a penny in purfe, or a petticoat to pawn. This meffage was fubfcribed by all my chief tenants; and proved fo powerful, that my rival immediately grew more tractable upon it. The refult of which was, that there is now a treaty of marriage * concluded between them; the wedding-cloaths are bought, and nothing remaineth but to perform the ceremony, which is put off for fome days, because they defign it to be a public wedding. And, to reward my love, conftancy, and generofity, he hath bestowed on me the office of being fenpftrefs to his grooms and footmen, which I am forced to accept or starve. Yet, in the midst of this my fituation, I cannot but have fome pity for this deluded man, to caft himself away on an infamous creature; who, whatever she pretendeth, I can prove, would at this very minute rather be a whore to a certain great man, that shall be nameless, if the might have her will. For my part, I think, and fo doth all the country too, that the man is poffeffed; at least none of us are able to imagine what he can poffibly fee in her, unless the hath bewitched him, or given him fome powder.

I am fure I never fought this alliance; and you can bear me witness, that I might have had other matches; nay, if I were lightly difpofed, I could ftill perhaps have offers, that fome, who hold their heads higher, would be glad to accept. But alas! I never had any fuch wic ked thought; all I now defire is, only to enjoy a little quiet, to be free from the perfecutions of this unreafon. able man, and that he will let me manage my own little fortune to the best advantage; for which I will undertake to pay him a confiderable penfion every year, much more confiderable than what he now gets by his oppreffions; for he must needs find himself a lofer at last, when he hath drained me and my tenants fo dry, that

Treaty of union.


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