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Edited with Introduction, Notes, and Glossary 



Instructor in English in Yale University 

A Thesis presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of Yale University 

in Candidacy for the Degree of 

Doctor of Philosophy 


5 . 4-. 50 

Copyright by William Savage Johnson, i s 




In The Devil is an Ass Jonson may be studied, first, as a 
student ; secondly, as an observer. Separated by only two 
years from the preceding play, Bartholomew Fair, and by 
nine from the following, The Staple of News, the present 
play marks the close of an epoch in the poet's life, the 
period of his vigorous maturity. Its relations with the plays 
of his earlier periods are therefore of especial interest. 

The results of the present editor's study of these and 
other literary connections are presented, partly in the Notes, 
and partly in the Introduction to this book. After the dis 
cussion of the purely technical problems in Sections A and 
B, the larger features are taken up in Section C, I and II. 
These involve a study of the author's indebtedness to Eng 
lish, Italian, and classical sources, and especially to the 
early English drama; as well as of his own dramatic 
methods in previous plays. The more minute relations to 
contemporary dramatists and to his own former work, 
especially in regard to current words and phrases, are 
dealt with in the Notes. 

As an observer, Jonson appears as a student of London, 
and a satirist of its manners and vices; and, in a broader 
way, as a critic of contemporary England. The life and 
aspect of London are treated, for the most part, in the 
Notes; the issues of state involved in Jonson's satire are 
presented in historical discussions in Section C, III. Per 
sonal satire is treated in the division following. 

I desire to express my sincere thanks to Professor 
Albert S. Cook for advice in matters of form and for 
inspiration in the work ; to Professor Henry A. Beers for 
painstaking discussion of difficult questions; to Dr. De 
Winter for help and criticism; to Dr. John M. Berdan 
for the privilege of consulting his copy of the Folio; to 

viii Preface 

Mr. Andrew Keogh and to Mr. Henry A. Gruener, for 
aid in bibliographical matters; and to Professor George 
L. Burr for the loan of books from the Cornell Library. 

A portion of the expense of printing this book has been 
borne by the Modern Language Club of Yale University 
from funds placed at its disposal by the generosity of Mr. 
George E. Dimock of Elizabeth, New Jersey, a graduate 
of Yale in the Class of 1874. 

w. s. j. 


August 30, 1905. 






C. THE DEVIL is AN Ass . .. . . xix 

I. THE DEVIL PLOT ..... xx 

1. The Devil in the pre-Shakespearian 

Drama ..... xxii 

2. Jonson's Treatment of the Devil . xxiii 

3. The Influence of Robin Goodfellow 

and of Popular Legend . . xxvi 

4. Friar Rush and Dekker . . . xxvii 

5. The Novella of Belfagor and the 

Comedy of Grim . . . xxx 

6. Summary ..... xxxiv 

7. The Figure of the Vice . . . xxxiv 

8. Jonson's Use of the Vice . . xxxvii 


1. General Treatment of the Plot . . xli 

2. Chief Sources of the Plot . . xlv 

3. Prototypes of the leading Characters Hi 

4. Minor Sources .... liii 



1. The Duello 

2. The Monopoly System 

3. Witchcraft ..... 


Mrs. Fitzdottrel .... 
Fitzdottrel ..... 


Justice Eitherside .... 
Merecraft ..... 
Plutarchus Guilthead 
The Noble House .... 
























The Devil is an Ass was first printed in 1631, and was 
probably put into circulation at that time, either as a 
separate pamphlet or bound with Bartholomew Fair and 
The Staple of News. Copies of this original edition were, 
in 1640-1, bound into the second volume of the First Folio 
of Jonson's collected works. 1 In 1641 a variant reprint 
edition of The Devil is an Ass, apparently small, was issued 
in pamphlet form. The play reappears in all subsequent 
collected editions. These are: (i) the Third Folio/ 
1692; (2) a bookseller's edition, 1716 [1717] 5 (3) 
Whalley's edition, 1756; (4) John Stockdale's reprint of 
Whalley's edition (together with the works of Beaumont 
and Fletcher), 1811; (5) Gifford's edition, 1816; (6) 
Barry Cornwall's one-volume edition, 1838; (7) Lieut. 
Col. Francis Cunningham's three-volume reissue (with 
some minor variations) of Gifford's edition, 1871 ; (8) 
another reissue by Cunningham, in nine volumes (with 
additional notes), 1875. The Catalogue of the British 
Museum shows that Jonson's works were printed in two 
volumes at Dublin in 1729. Of these editions only the first 
two call for detailed description, and of the others only 
the first, second, third, fifth, and eighth will be discussed. 
1631. Owing to irregularity in contents and arrange 
ment in different copies, the second volume of the First 
Folio has been much discussed. Gifforcl speaks of it 
as the edition of i63i-4i. 2 Miss Bates, copying from 
Lowndes, gives it as belonging to 1631, reprinted in 1640 

1 The first volume of this folio appeared in 1616. A reprint of this 
volume in 1640 is sometimes called the Second Folio. It should 
not be confused with the 1631-41 Edition of the second volume. 

3 Note prefixed to Bartholometv Fair. 

xii Introduction 

and in I64I. 1 Ward says substantially the same thing. 2 
In 1870, however, Brinsley Nicholson, by a careful colla 
tion, 3 arrived at the following results. (i) The so-called 
editions of the second volume assigned to 1631, 1640, and 
1641 form only a single edition. (2) The belief in the 
existence of 'the so-called first edition of the second volume 
in 1631' is due to the dates prefixed to the opening plays. 

(3) The belief in the existence of the volume of 1641 
arose from the dates of Mortimer and the Discoveries, 'all 
the copies of which are dated 1641,' and of the variant edi 
tion of The Devil is an Ass, which will next be described. 

(4) The 1640 edition supplies for some copies a general 
title-page, 'R. Meighen, 1640,' but the plays printed in 1631 
are reprinted from the same forms. Hazlitt arrives at prac 
tically the same conclusions. 4 

The volume is a folio by measurement, but the signatures 
are in fours. 

Collation: Five leaves, the second with the signature 
A 3 . B-M in fours. Aa-Bb; Cc-Cc 2 (two leaves); C 3 
(one leaf) ; one leaf; D-I in fours; two leaves. [N]-Y 
in fours; B-Q in fours; R (two leaves) ; S-X in fours; 
Y (two leaves); Z-Oo in fours. Pp (two leaves). Qq; 
A-K in fours. L (two leaves). [M]-R in fours. A-P 
in fours. Q (two leaves). [R]-V in fours. 

The volume opens with Bartholomeiv Fayre, which occu 
pies pages [i-io], 1-88 (pages 12, 13, and 31 misnum- 
bered), or the first group of signatures given above. 

2. The Staple of Newes, paged independently, [i]-[76] 
(pages 19, 22, and 63 misnumbered), and signatured inde 
pendently as in the second group above. 

3. The Diuell is an Asse, [N]-Y, paged [9i]-i7o (pages 
99, 132, and 137 misnumbered). [N] recto contains the 
title page (verso blank). N 2 contains a vignette and the 
persons of the play on the recto, a vignette and the prologue 

*Eng. Drama, p. 78. 

J Eng. Drama 2. 296. 

3 N. & Q. 4 th Ser. 5. 573. 

* Bibliog. Col, 2d Ser. p. 320. 

Introduction xiii 

on the verso. N 3 to the end contains the play proper; the 
epilogue being on the last leaf verso. 

One leaf (pages 89-90) is thus unaccounted for; but it 
is evident from the signatures and pagination that The 
Diuell is an Asse was printed with a view to having it 
follow Bartholomew Fayre. These three plays were all 
printed by I. B. for Robert Allot in 1631. Hazlitt says 
that they are often found together in a separate volume, 
and that they were probably intended by Jonson to supple 
ment the folio of I6I6. 1 

Collation made from copy in the library of Yale Univer 
sity at New Haven. 

It was the opinion of both Whalley and Gifford that the 
publication of The Devil is an Ass in 1631 was made with 
out the personal supervision of the author. Gifford did 
not believe that Jonson 'concerned himself with the revision 
of the folio, ... or, indeed, ever saw it.' The letter to 
the Earl of Newcastle (Harl. MS. 4955), quoted in Gif- 
ford's memoir, sufficiently disproves this supposition, at 
least so far as Bartholomew Fair and The Devil is an Ass 
are concerned. In this letter, written according to Gifford 
about 1632, Jonson says : 'It is the lewd printer's fault that 
I can send your lordship no more of my book. I sent you 
one piece before, The Fair, . . . and now I send you this 
other morsel, The fine gentleman that walks the town, The 
Fiend; but before he will perfect the rest I fear he will 
come himself to be a part under the title of The Absolute 
Knave, which he hath played with me.' In 1870 Brinsley 
Nicholson quoted this letter in Notes and Queries (4th 
S. 5. 574), and pointed out that the jocular allusions are 
evidently to Bartholomezv Fair and The Devil is an Ass. 

Although Gifford is to some extent justified in his con 
tempt for the edition, it is on the whole fairly correct. 

The misprints are not numerous. The play is overpunc- 
tuated. Thus the words 'now' and 'again' are usually 
marked off by commas. Occasionally the punctuation is 

1 Bibliog. Col., p. 320. For a more detailed description of this 
volume see Winter, pp. xii-xiii. 

xiv Introduction 

misleading. The mark of interrogation is generally, but 
not invariably, used for that of exclamation. The apos 
trophe is often a metrical device, and indicates the blending 
of two words without actual elision of either. The most 
serious defect is perhaps the wrong assignment of speeches, 
though later emendations are to be accepted only with cau 
tion. The present text aims to be an exact reproduction of 
that of the 1631 edition. 

1641. The pamphlet quarto of 1641 is merely a poor 
reprint of the 1631 edition. It abounds in printer's errors. 
Few if any intentional changes, even of spelling and punc 
tuation, are introduced. Little intelligence is shown by the 
printer, as in the change 5. I. 34 SN. (references are to act, 
scene, and line) He flags] He stags. It is however of some 
slight importance, inasmuch as it seems to have been fol 
lowed in some instances by succeeding editions (cf. the 
omission of the side notes 2. I. 20, 22, 33, followed by 
1692, 1716, and W; also 2. I. 46 his] a 1641, f.). 

The title-page of this edition is copied, as far as the quota 
tion from Horace, from the title-page of the 1631 edition. 
For the wood-cut of that edition, however, is substituted 
the device of a swan, with the legend 'God is my helper/ 
Then follow the words: 'Imprinted at London, 1641.' 

Folio by measurement ; signatures in fours. 

Collation : one leaf, containing the title-page on the recto, 
verso blank; second leaf with signature A 2 (?), contain 
ing a device (St. Francis preaching to the birds [?]), and 
the persons of the play on the recto, and a device (a saint 
pointing to heaven and hell) and the prologue on the verso. 
Then the play proper; B-I in fours; K (one leaf). The 
first two leaves are unnumbered; then 1-66 (35 wrongly 
numbered 39). 

1692. The edition of 1692* is a reprint of 1631, but fur 
nishes evidence of some editing. Most of the nouns are 
capitalized, and a change of speaker is indicated by breaking 
the lines; obvious misprints are corrected: e. g., I. i. 

J For a collation of this edition, see Mallory, pp. xv-xvii. 

Introduction xv 

98, 101 ; the spelling is modernized: e. g., I. I. 140 Tiborne] 
Tyburn; and the punctuation is improved. Sometimes a 
word undergoes a considerable morphological change : e. g., 

1. i. 67 Belins-gate] Billings-gate; i. 6. 172, 175 venter] 
venture. Etymology is sometimes indicated by an apos 
trophe, not always correctly: e. g., 2. 6. 75 salts] 'salts. 
Several changes are uniform throughout the edition, and 
have been followed by all later editors. The chief of these 
are: inough] enough; tother] t'other; coozen] cozen; 
ha's] has; then] than; 'hem] 'em (except G sometimes); 
in joy] enjoy. Several changes of wording occur: e. g., 

2. i. 53 an] my; etc. 

1716. The edition of 1716 is a bookseller's reprint of 
1692. It follows that edition in the capitalization of nouns, 
the breaking up of the lines, and usually in the punctuation. 
In 2. i. 78-80 over two lines are omitted by both editions. 
Independent editing, however, is not altogether lacking. 
We find occasional new elisions: e. g., i. 6. 121 I'have] 
I've ; at least one change of wording : 2. 3. 25 where] were ; 
and one in the order of words : 4. 2. 22 not love] love not 
In 4. 4. 75-76 and 76-78 it corrects two wrong assignments 
of speeches. A regular change followed by all editors is 
wiues] wife's. 

1756. The edition of Peter Whalley, 1756, purports to 
be 'collated with all the former editions, and corrected/ 
but according to modern standards it cannot be called a 
critical text. Not only does it follow 1716 in modernization 
of spelling ; alteration of contractions : e. g., 2. 8. 69 To'a] 
T'a; 3. i. 20 In t'one] Int' one; and changes in wording: 
e. g., i. i. 24 strengths] strength; 3. 6. 26 Gentleman] 
Gentlewoman ; but it is evident that Whalley considered the 
1716 edition as the correct standard for a critical text, and 
made his correction by a process of occasional restoration 
of the original reading. Thus in restoring 'Crane,' i. 4. 
50, he uses the expression, 'which is authorized by the 
folio of 1640.' Again in 2. i. 124 he retains 'petty' from 
1716, although he says: 'The edit, of 1640, as I think more 
justly, Some pretty principality.' This reverence for the 

xvi Introduction 

1716 text is inexplicable. In the matter of capitalization 
Whalley forsakes his model, and he makes emendations of 
his own with considerable freedom. He still further mod 
ernizes the spelling; he spells out elided words: e. g., I. 3. 
15 H' has] he has; makes new elisions: e. g., I. 6. 143 
Yo' are] You're; i. 6. 211 I am] I'm; grammatical changes, 
sometimes of doubtful correctness: e. g., i. 3. 21 I'le] I'd; 
morphological changes: e. g., i. 6. 121 To scape] T'escape; 
metrical changes by insertions: e. g., i. i. 48 'to;' 4. 7. 
38 'but now;' changes of wording: e. g., i. 6. 195 sad] 
said; in the order of words: e. g., 3. 4. 59 is hee] he is; 
and in the assignment of speeches: e. g., 3. 6. 61. Several 
printer's errors occur: e. g., 2. 6. 21 and 24. 

1816. William Gifford's edition is more carefully printed 
than that of Whalley, whom he criticizes freely. In many 
indefensible changes, however, he follows his predecessor, 
even to the insertion of words in i. i. 48 and 4. 7. 38, 39 
(see above). He makes further morphological changes, 
even when involving a change of metre: e. g., i. i. n 
Totnam] Tottenham; i. 4. 88 phantsie] phantasie; makes 
new elisions: e. g., i. 6. 226 I ha'] I've; changes in word 
ing: e. g., 2. i. 97 O'] O!; and in assignment of speeches: 
e. g., 4. 4. 17. He usually omits parentheses, and the fol 
lowing changes in contracted words occur, only exceptions 
being noted in the variants : fro'] from; gi'] give; h'] he; 
ha'] have; 'hem] them (but often 'em); i'] in; o'] on, 
of; t'] to; th'] the; upo'] upon; wi'] with, will; yo'] 
you. Gifford's greatest changes are in the stage directions 
and side notes of the 1631 edition. The latter he considered 
as of 'the most trite and trifling nature', and 'a worthless 
incumbrance.' He accordingly cut or omitted with the 
utmost freedom, introducing new and elaborate stage direc 
tions of his own. He reduced the number of scenes from 
thirty-six to seventeen. In this, as Hathaway points out, 
he followed the regular English usage, dividing the scenes 
according to actual changes of place. Jonson adhered to 
classical tradition, and looked upon a scene as a situation. 
Gifford made his alterations by combining whole scenes, 

Introduction xvii 

except in the case of Act 2. 3, which begins at Folio Act 
2. 7. 23 (middle of line) ; of Act 3. 2, which begins at 
Folio Act 3. 5. 65 and of Act 3. 3, which begins at Folio 
Act 3. 5. 78 (middle of line). He considered himself justi 
fied in his mutilation of the side notes on the ground that 
they were not from the hand of Jonson. Evidence has 
already been adduced to show that they were at any rate 
printed with his sanction. I am, however, inclined to 
believe with Gifford that they were written by another hand. 
Gifford's criticism of them is to a large extent just. The 
note on 'Niaise,' i. 6. 18, is of especially doubtful value 
(see note). 

1875. 'Cunningham's reissue, 1875, reprints Gifford's 
text without change. Cunningham, however, frequently 
expresses his disapproval of Gifford's licence in changing 
the text' (Winter). 

We learn from the title-page that this comedy was acted 
in 1616 by the King's Majesty's Servants. This is further 
confirmed by a passage in i. i. 80-81 : 

Now? As Vice stands this present yeere? Remember, 
What number it is. Six hundred and sixteene. 

Another passage (i. 6. 31) tells us that the performance 
took place in the Blackfriars Theatre: 

Today, I goe to the Black-fryers Play-house. 

That Fitzdottrel is to see The Devil is an Ass we learn later 
(3. 5. 38). The performance was to take place after dinner 

(3- 5- 34). 

At this time the King's Men were in possession of two 
theatres, the Globe and the Blackfriars. The former was 
used in the summer, so that The Devil is an Ass was evi 
dently not performed during that season. 1 These are all the 
facts that we can determine with certainty. 

Jonson's masque, The Golden Age Restored, was pre 
sented, according to Fleay, on January i and 6. His next 

1 Collier, Annals 3. 275, 302 ; Fleay, Hist. 190. 

xviii Introduction 

masque was Christmas, his Masque, December 25, j6i6. 
Between these dates he must have been busy on The Devil 
is an Ass. Fleay, who identifies Fitzdottrel with Coke, 
conjectures that the date of the play is probably late in 

1616, after Coke's discharge in November. If Coke is 
satirized either in the person of Fitzdottrel or in that of 
Justice Eitherside (see Introduction, pp. Ixx, Ixxii), the 
conjecture may be allowed to have some weight. 

In i. 2. i Fitzdottrel speaks of Bretnor as occupying the 
position once held by the conspirators in the Overbury case. 
Franklin, who is mentioned, was not brought to trial until 
November 18, 1615. Jonson does not speak of the trial as 
of a contemporary or nearly contemporary event. 

Act 4 is largely devoted to a satire of Spanish fashions. 
In 4. 2. 71 there is a possible allusion to the Infanta Maria, 
for whose marriage with Prince Charles secret negotia 
tions were being carried on at this time. We learn that 
Commissioners were sent to Spain on November 9 (Col. 
State Papers, Dom. Ser.), and from a letter of January i, 

1617, that 'the Spanish tongue, dress, etc. are all in fashion' 

These indications are all of slight importance, but from 
their united evidence we may feel reasonably secure in 
assigning the date of presentation to late November or 
early December, 1616. 

The play was not printed until 1631. It seems never to 
have been popular, but was revived after the Restoration, 
and is given by Downes 1 in the list of old plays acted in 
the New Theatre in Drury Lane after April 8, 1663. He 
continues: 'These being Old Plays, were Acted but now 
and then ; yet being well Perform'd were very Satisfactory 
to the Town.' The other plays of Jonson revived by this 
company were The Fox, The Alchemist, Epicoene, Catiline, 
Every Man out of his Humor, Every Man in his Humor, 
and Sejanus. Genest gives us no information of any later 

1 Roscius Anglicanus, p. 8. 

Introduction xix 


Jonson's characteristic conception of comedy as a vehicle 
for the study of 'humors' passed in Every Man out of his 
Humor into caricature, and in Cynthia's Revels and Poetas 
ter into allegory. The process was perfectly natural. In 
the humor study each character is represented as absorbed 
by a single vice or folly. In the allegorical treatment the 
abstraction is the starting-point, and the human element the 
means of interpretation. Either type of drama, by a shift 
ing of emphasis, may readily pass over into the other. The 
failure of Cynthia's Revels, in spite of the poet's arrogant 
boast at its close, had an important effect upon his develop 
ment, and the plays of Jonson's middle period, from Sejanus 
to The Devil is an Ass, show more restraint in the handling 
of character, as well as far greater care in construction. 
The figures are typical rather than allegorical, and the plot 
in general centres about certain definite objects of satire. 
Both plot and characterization are more closely unified. 

The Devil is an Ass marks a return to the supernatural 
and allegorical. The main action, however, belongs strictly 
to the type of the later drama, especially as exemplified by 
The Alchemist. The fanciful motive of the infernal visi 
tant to earth was found to be of too slight texture for 
'Jonson's sternly moral and satirical purpose. In the 
development of the drama it breaks down completely, and 
is crowded out by the realistic plot. Thus what promised 
at first to be the chief, and remains in some respects the 
happiest, motive of the play comes in the final execution to 
be little better than an inartistic and inharmonious excres 
cence. Yet Jonson's words to Drummond seem to indi 
cate that he still looked upon it as the real kernel of the play. 1 

1 'A play of his, upon which he was accused, The Divell is ane 
Ass ; according to Comedia Vctus, in England the Divell was 
brought in either with one Vice or other : the play done the Divel 
caried away the Vice, he brings in the Divel so overcome with the 
wickedness of this age that thought himself ane Ass. Uapepyovs 
[incidentally] is discoursed of the Duke of Drounland: the King 
desired him to conceal it.' Conversations with William Drummond, 
Jonson's Wks. 9. 400-1. 

xx Introduction 

The action is thus easily divisible into two main lines ; the 
devil-plot, involving the fortunes of Satan, Pug and Iniquity, 
and the satirical or main plot. This division is the more 
satisfactory, since Satan and Iniquity are not once brought 
into contact with the chief actors, while Pug's connection 
with them is wholly external, and affects only his own 
fortunes. He is, as Herford has already pointed out, 
merely 'the fly upon the engine-wheel, fortunate to escape 
with a bruising' (Studies, p. 320). He forms, however, 
the connecting link between the two plots, and his function 
in the drama must be regarded from two different points 
of view, according as it shares in the realistic or the super 
natural element. 


Jonson's title, The Devil is an Ass, expresses with perfect 
adequacy the familiarity and contempt with which this once 
terrible personage had come to be regarded in the later 
Elizabethan period. The poet, of course, is deliberately 
archaizing, and the figures of devil and Vice are made 
largely conformable to the purposes of satire. Several 
years before, in the Dedication to The Fox, 1 Jonson had 
expressed his contempt for the introduction of 'fools and 
devils and those antique relics of barbarism,' characterizing, 
them as 'ridiculous and exploded follies/ He treats the 
same subject with biting satire in The Staple of News. 2 
Yet with all his devotion to realism in matters of petty 
detail, of local color, and of contemporary allusion, he was, 
as we have seen, not without an inclination toward allegory. 
Thus in Every Man out of his Humor the figure of Maci- 
lente is very close to a purely allegorical expression of envy. 
In Cynthia's Revels the process was perfectly conscious, for 
in the Induction to that play the characters are spoken of 
as Virtues and Vices. In Poetaster again we have the 
purging of Demetrius and Crispinus. Jonson's return to 

1 Wks. 3. 158. 

*Wks. 5. 105 f. Cf. also Shirley, Prologue to The Doubtful 



this field in The Devil is an Ass is largely prophetic of 
the future course of his drama. The allegory of The Staple 
of News is more closely woven into the texture of the play 
than is that of The Devil is an Ass; and the conception 
of Pecunia and her retinue is worked out with much elab 
oration. In the Second Intermean the purpose of this play 
is explained as a refinement of method in the use of alle 
gory. For the old Vice with his wooden dagger to snap 
at everybody he met, or Iniquity, appareled 'like Hokos 
Pokos, in a juggler's jerkin,' he substitutes 'vices male 
and female/ 'attired like men and women of the time.' 
This of course is only a more philosophical and abstract 
statement of the idea which he expresses in The Devil is an 
Ass (i. i. 120 f.) of a world where the vices are not dis 
tinguishable by any outward sign from the virtues : 

They weare the same clothes, eate the same meate, 
Sleep i' the self-same beds, ride i' those coaches. 
Or very like, foure horses in a coach, 
As the best men and women. 

The New Inn and The Magnetic Lady are also penetrated 
with allegory of a sporadic and trivial nature. Jonson's 
use of devil and Vice in the present play is threefold. It 
is in part earnestly allegorical, especially in Satan's long 
speech in the first scene; it is in part a satire upon the 
employment of what he regarded as barbarous devices ; and 
it is, to no small extent, itself a resort for the sake of comic 
effect to the very devices which he ridiculed. 

Jonson's conception of the devil was naturally very far 
from mediaeval, and he relied for the effectiveness of his 
portrait upon current disbelief in this conception. Yet 
medievalism had not wholly died out, and remnants of the 
morality-play are to be found in many plays of the Eliza 
bethan and Jacobean drama. Rev. John Upton, in his 
Critical Observations on Shakespeare, 1746, was the first 
to point out the historical connection between Jonson's Vice 
and devils and those of the pre-Shakespearian drama. In 
modern times the history of the devil and the Vice as 
dramatic figures has been thoroughly investigated, the latest 

xxii Introduction 

works being those of Dr. L. W. Cushman and Dr. E. 
Eckhardt, at whose hands the subject has received exhaus 
tive treatment. The connection with Machiavelli's novella 
of Belfagor was pointed out by Count Baudissin, 1 Ben 
Jonson und seine Schule, Leipzig 1836, and has been worked 
out exhaustively by Dr. E. Hollstein in a Halle dissertation, 
1901. Dr. C. H. Her ford, however, had already suggested 
that the chief source of the devil-plot was to be found in 
the legend of Friar Rush. 

i. The Devil in the pre-Shakespearian Drama 

The sources for the conception of the devil in the mediae 
val drama are to be sought in a large body of non-dramatic 
literature. In this literature the devil was conceived of 
as a fallen angel, the enemy of God and his hierarchy, and 
the champion of evil. As such he makes his appearance in 
the mystery-plays. The mysteries derived their subjects 
from Bible history, showed comparatively little pliancy, and 
dealt always with serious themes. In them the devil is with 
few exceptions a serious figure. Occasionally, however, 
even at this early date, comedy and satire find place. The 
most prominent example is the figure of Titivillus in the 
Towneley cycle. 

In the early moralities the devil is still of primary import 
ance, and is always serious. But as the Vice became a more 
and more prominent figure, the devil became less and less 
so, and in the later drama his part is always subordinate. 
The play of Nature (c 1500) is the first morality without 
a devil. Out of fifteen moralities of later date tabulated 
by Cushman, only four are provided with this character. 

The degeneration of the devil as a dramatic figure was 
inevitable. His grotesque appearance, at first calculated to 
inspire terror, by its very exaggeration produced, when once 
familiar, a wholly comic effect. When the active comic 
parts were assumed by the Vice, he became a mere butt, and 
finally disappears. 

1 Count Baudissin translated two of Jonson's comedies into Ger 
man, The Alchemist and The Devil is an Ass (Der Dumme Teufel). 

Introduction xxiii 

One of the earliest comic figures in the religious drama 
is that of the clumsy or uncouth servant. 1 Closely allied 
to him is the under-devil, who appears as early as The 
Harrowing of Hell, and this figure is constantly employed 
as a comic personage in the later drama. 2 The figure of 
the servant later developed into that of the clown, and in 
this type the character of the devil finally merged. 3 

2. Jonsoris Treatment of the Devil 

In the present play the devil-type is represented by the 
arch-fiend Satan and his stupid subordinate, Pug. Of these 
two Satan received more of the formal conventional ele 
ments of the older drama, while Pug for the most part 
represents the later or clownish figure. As in the morality- 
play Satan's chief function is the instruction of his emissary 
of evil. In no scene does he come into contact with human 
beings, and he is always jealously careful for the best inter 
ests of his state. In addition Jonson employs one purely 
conventional attribute belonging to the tradition of the 
church- and morality-plays. This is the cry of 'Ho, ho!,' 
with which Satan makes his entrance upon the stage in the 
first scene. 4 Other expressions of emotion were also used, 
but 'Ho, ho !' came in later days to be recognized as the 
conventional cry of the fiend upon making his entrance. 5 

1 Eckhardt, p. 42 f . 

2 Ibid., p. 67 f. 

3 In general the devil is more closely related to the clown, and the 
Vice to the fool. In some cases, however, the devil is to be identi 
fied with the fool, and the Vice with the clown. 

4 In the Digby group of miracle-plays roaring by the devil is a 
prominent feature. Stage directions in Paul provide for 'cryeing 
and rorying' and Belial enters with the cry, 'Ho, ho, behold me.' 
Among the moralities The Disobedient Child may be mentioned. 

8 So in Gammer Gurton's Needle, c 1562, we read: 'But Diccon, 
Diccon, did not the devil cry ho, ho, ho?' Cf. also the translation of 
Goulart's Histories, 1607 (quoted by Sharp, p. 59) : 'The fellow 
coming to the stove sawe the Diuills in horrible formes, some sit 
ting, some standing, others walking, some ramping against the walles, 
but al of them, assoone as they beheld him, crying Hoh, hoh, what 
makest thou here?' 

xxiv Introduction 

How the character of Satan was to be represented is of 
course impossible to determine. The devil in the pre- 
Shakespearian drama was always a grotesque figure, often 
provided with the head of a beast and a cow's tail. 1 In 
the presentation of Jonson's play the ancient tradition was 
probably followed. Satan's speeches, however, are not 
undignified, and too great grotesqueness of costume must 
have resulted in considerable incongruity. 

In the figure of Pug few of the formal elements of the 
pre-Shakespearian devil are exhibited. He remains, of 
course, the ostensible champion of evil, but is far surpassed 
by his earthly associates, both in malice and in intellect. 
In personal appearance he is brought by the assumption of 
the body and dress of a human being into harmony with 
his environment. A single conventional episode, with a 
reversal of the customary proceeding, is retained from the 
morality-play. While Pug is languishing in prison, Iniquity 
appears, Pug mounts upon his back, and is carried off to 
hell. Iniquity comments upon it : 

The Diuell was wont to carry away the euill ; 
But, now, the Euill out-carries the Diuell. 

That the practice above referred to was a regular or even 
a frequent feature of the morality-play has been disputed, 
but the evidence seems fairly conclusive that it was common 
in the later and more degenerate moralities. At any rate, 
like the cry of 'Ho, ho!' it had come to be looked upon 
as part of the regular stock in trade, and this was enough 
for Jonson's purpose. 2 This motive of the Vice riding the 

1 Cf. the words of Robin Goodfellow in Wily Beguiled (O. PL, 4th 
ed., 9. 268) : 'I'll put me on my great carnation-nose, and wrap me 
in a rowsing calf-skin suit and come like some hobgoblin, or some 
devil ascended from the grisly pit of hell.' 

- Cushman points out that it occurs in only one drama, that of Like 
will to Like. He attributes the currency of the notion that this mode 
of exit was the regular one to the famous passage in Harsnet's 
Declaration of Popish Impostures (p. 114, 1603) : 'It was a pretty 
part in the old church-playes, when the nimble Vice would skip up 
nimbly like a jackanapes into the devil's necke, and ride the devil a 

Introduction xxv 

devil had changed from a passive to an active comic part. 
Instead of the devil's prey he had become in the eyes of 
the spectators the devil's tormentor. Jonson may be looked 
upon as reverting, perhaps unconsciously, to the original 
and truer conception. 

In other respects Pug exhibits only the characteristics of 
the inheritor of the devil's comedy part, the butt or clown. 
As we have seen, one of the chief sources, as well as one 
of the constant modes of manifestation, of this figure was 
the servant or man of low social rank. Pug, too, on coming 
to earth immediately attaches himself to Fitzdottrel as a 
servant, and throughout his brief sojourn on earth he con 
tinues to exhibit the wonted stupidity and clumsy uncouth- 
ness of the clown. He appears, to be sure, in a fine suit 
of clothes, but he soon shows himself unfit for the position 
of gentleman-usher, and his stupidity appears at every turn. 
The important element in the clown's comedy part, of a 
contrast between intention and accomplishment, is of course 
exactly the sort of fun inspired by Pug's repeated dis 
course, and belabour him with his wooden dagger, till he made him 
roare, whereat the people would laugh to see the devil so vice- 
haunted.' The moralities and tragedies give no indication of hos 
tility between Vice and devil. Cushman believes therefore that 
Harsnet refers either to some lost morality or to 'Punch and Judy.' 
It is significant, however, that in 'Punch and Judy,' which gives 
indications of being a debased descendant of the morality, the devil 
enters with the evident intention of carrying the hero off to hell. 
The joke consists as in the present play in a reversal of the usual 
proceeding. Eckhardt (p. 85 n.) points out that the Vice's cudgel 
ing of the devil was probably a mere mirth-provoking device, and 
indicated no enmity between the two. Moreover the motive of the 
devil as an animal for riding is not infrequent. In the Castle of 
Perseverance the devil carries away the hero, Humanum Genus. The 
motive appears also in Greene's Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay and 
Lodge and Greene's Looking Glass for London and England, and 
especially in Histriomastix, where the Vice rides a roaring devil 
(Eckhardt, pp. 86 f.). We have also another bit of evidence from 
Jonson himself. In The Staple of News Mirth relates her reminis 
cences of the old comedy. In speaking of the devil she says : 'He 
would carry away the Vice on his back quick to hell in every play.' 

xxvi Introduction 

comfiture. With the clown it often takes the form of 
blunders in speech, and his desire to appear fine and say the 
correct thing frequently leads him into gross absurdities. 
This is brought out with broad humor in 4. 4. 219, where 
Pug, on being catechized as to what he should consider 
'the height of his employment,' stumbles upon the unfortu 
nate suggestion: 'To find out a good C or ne- cutter. 3 His 
receiving blows at the hand of his master further distin 
guishes him as a clown. The investing of Pug with such 
attributes was, as we have seen, no startling innovation on 
Jonson's part. Moreover, it fell into line with his purpose 
in this play, and was the more acceptable since it allowed 
him to make use of the methods of realism instead of forc 
ing him to draw a purely conventional figure. Pug, of 
course, even in his character of clown, is not the unrelated 
stock-figure, introduced merely for the sake of inconse 
quent comic dialogue and rough horse-play. His part is 
important and definite, though not sufficiently developed. 

3. The Influence of Robin Goodfellow and of Popular 


A constant element of the popular demonology was the 
belief in the kobold or elfish sprite. This figure appears 
in the mysteries in the shape of Titivillus, but is not found 
in the moralities. Robin Goodfellow, however, makes his 
appearance in at least three comedies, Midsummer Night's 
Dream, 1593-4, Grim, the Collier of Croyden, c 1600, 
and Wily Beguiled, 1606. The last of these especially 
approaches Jonson's conception. Here Robin Goodfellow 
is a malicious intriguer, whose nature, whether human or 
diabolical, is left somewhat in doubt. His plans are com 
pletely frustrated, he is treated with contempt, and is beaten 
by Fortunatus. The character was a favorite with Jonson. 
In the masque of The Satyr, IOO3, 1 that character is 

1 Cf. also Love Restored, 1610-11, and the character of Puck Hairy 
in The Sad Shepherd. 

Introduction xxvii 

addressed as Pug, which here seems evidently equivalent to 
Puck or Robin Goodfellow. Similarly Thomas Heywood 
makes Kobald, Hobgoblin, Robin Goodfellow, and Pug 
practically identical. 1 Butler, in the Hudibras, 2 gives him 
the combination-title of good Pug-Robin.' Jonson's charac 
ter of Pug was certainly influenced in some degree both by 
the popular and the literary conception of this 'lubber fiend.' 
The theme of a stupid or outwitted devil occurred also 
both in ballad literature 3 and in popular legend. Roskoff 4 
places the change in attitude toward the devil from a feeling 
of fear to one of superiority at about the end of the 
eleventh century. The idea of a baffled devil may have 
been partially due to the legends of the saints, where the 
devil is constantly defeated, though he is seldom made to 
appear stupid or ridiculous. The notion of a 'stupid devil' 
is not very common in English, but occasionally appears. 
In the Virgilius legend the fiend is cheated of his reward 
by stupidly putting himself into the physical power of 
the wizard. In the Friar Bacon legend the necromancer 
delivers an Oxford gentleman by a trick of sophistry. 5 In 
the story upon which the drama of The Merry Devil of 
Edmonton was founded, the devil is not only cleverly out 
witted, but appears weak and docile in his indulgence of the 
wizard's plea for a temporary respite. It may be said 
in passing, in spite of Herford's assertion to the contrary, 
that the supernatural machinery in this play has considerably 
less connection with the plot than in The Devil is an Ass. 
Both show a survival of a past interest, of which the drama 
tist himself realizes the obsolete character. 

4. Friar Rush and Dekker 

It was the familiar legend of Friar Rush which furnished 
the groundwork of Jonson's play. The story seems to be 

1 Hierarchie of the Blessed Angels 9. 574. 

2 Part 3, Cant. I, 1. 1415. 

3 Cf. Devil in Britain and America, ch. 2. 
* Geschichte des Teufels i. 316, 395. 

5 Hazlitt, Tales, pp. 39, 83. 

xxviii Introduction 

of Danish origin, and first makes its appearance in England 
in the form of a prose history during the latter half of 
the sixteenth century. It is entered in the Stationer's Reg 
ister 1567-8, and mentioned by Reginald Scot in I584. 1 As 
early as 1566, however, the figure of Friar Rush on a 
'painted cloth' was a familiar one, and is so mentioned in 
Gammer Gurton's Needle. 2 The first extant edition dates 
from 1620, and has been reprinted by W. J. Thorns. 3 The 
character had already become partially identified with that 
of Robin Good fellow, 4 and this identification, as we have 
seen, Jonson was inclined to accept. 

In spite of many variations of detail the kernel of the 
Rush story is precisely that of Jonson's play, the visit of 
a devil to earth with the purpose of corrupting men. Both 
Rush and Pug assume human bodies, the former being 'put 
in rayment like an earthly creature/ while the latter is 
made subject 'to all impressions of the flesh.' 

Rush, unlike his counterpart, is not otherwise bound to 
definite conditions, but he too becomes a servant. The 
adventure is not of his own seeking ; he is chosen by agree 
ment of the council, and no mention is made of the emis 
sary's willingness or unwillingness to perform his part. 
Later, however, we read that he stood at the gate of the 
religious house 'all alone and with a heavie countenance.' 
In the beginning, therefore, he has little of Pug's thirst for 
adventure, but his object is at bottom the same, 'to goe 
and dwell among these religious men for to maintaine them 

1 Discovery, p. 522. 

2 O. PL, 4th ed., 3. 213. 

3 Early Eng. Prose Romances, London 1858. 

* See Herford's discussion, Studies, p. 305 ; also Quarterly Rev. 
22. 358. The frequently quoted passage from Harsnet's Declaration 
(ch. 20, p. 134), is as follows: 'And if that the bowle of curds and 
cream were not duly set out for Robin Goodfellow, the Friar, and 
Sisse the dairy-maide, why then either the pottage was burnt the 
next day, or the cheese would not curdle,' etc. Cf. also Scot, 
Discovery, p. 67: 'Robin could both eate and drinke, as being a 
cousening idle frier, or some such roge, that wanted nothing either 
belonging to lecherie or knaverie, &c.' 

Introduction xxix 

the longer in their ungracious living.' Like Pug, whose 
request for a Vice is denied him, he goes unaccompanied, 
and presents himself at the priory in the guise of a young 
man seeking service: 'Sir, I am a poore young man, and 
am out of service, and faine would have a maister.' 1 

Most of the remaining incidents of the Rush story could 
not be used in Jonson's play. Two incidents may be men 
tioned. Rush furthers the amours of his master, as Pug 
attempts to do those of his mistress. In the later history 
of Rush the motive of demoniacal possession is worked 
into the plot. In a very important respect, however, the 
legend differs from the play. Up to the time of discovery 
Rush is popular and successful. He is nowhere made 
ridiculous, and his mission of corruption is in large measure 
fulfilled. The two stories come together in their conclu 
sion. The discovery that a real devil has been among them 
is the means of the friars' conversion and future right 
living. A precisely similar effect takes place in the case 
of Fitzdottrel. 

The legend of Friar Rush had already twice been used 
in the drama before it was adopted by Jonson. The play 
by Day and Haughton to which Henslowe refers 2 is not 
extant; Dekker's drama, // this be not a good Play, the 
Diuell is in it, appeared in 1612. Jonson in roundabout 
fashion acknowledged his indebtedness to this play by the 
closing line of his prologue, 

If this Play doe not like, the Diuell is in't. 

Dekker's play adds few new elements to the story. The 
first scene is in the infernal regions; not, however, the 
Christian hell, as in the prose history, but the classical Hades. 
This change seems to have been adopted from Machiavelli. 
Three devils are sent to earth with the object of corrupting 
men and replenishing hell. They return, on the whole, suc 
cessful, though the corrupted king of Naples is finally 

1 Cf. Pug's words, i. 3. i f. 

2 See Herf ord, p. 308. 

xxx Introduction 

In certain respects, however, the play stands closer to 
Jonson's drama than the history. In the first place, the 
doctrine that hell's vices are both old-fashioned and out 
done by men, upon which Satan lays so much stress in his 
instructions to Pug in the first scene, receives a like emphasis 
in Dekker: 

'tis thought 

That men to find hell, now, new waies have sought, 
As Spaniards did to the Indies. 

and again : 

aboue vs dwell, 

Diuells brauer, and more subtill then in Hell. 1 

and finally: 

They scorne thy hell, hauing better of their owne. 

In the second place Lurchall, unlike Rush, but in the same 
way as Pug, finds himself inferior to his earthly associates. 
He acknowledges himself overreached by Bartervile, and 
confesses : 

I came to teach, but now (me thinkes) must learne. 

A single correspondence of lesser importance may be added. 
Both devils, when asked whence they come, obscurely inti 
mate their hellish origin. Pug says that he comes from the 
Devil's Cavern in Derbyshire. Rufman asserts that his 
home is Helvetia. 2 

5. The Novella of Belfagor and the Comedy of Grim 

The relation between Jonson's play and the novella attrib 
uted to Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1522) has been treated 
in much detail by Dr. Ernst Hollstein. Dr. Hollstein com- 

1 A similar passage is found in Dekker, Whore of Babylon, Wks. 
2. 255. The sentiment is not original with Dekker. Cf. Middleton, 
Black Book, 1604: 

And were it number'd well, 

There are more devils on earth than are in hell. 

2 Dekker makes a similar pun on Helicon in News from Hell, 
Non-dram Wks. 2. 95. 

Introduction xxxi 

pares the play with the first known English translation, 
that by the Marquis of Wharton in I6/4. 1 It is probable, 
however, that Jonson knew the novella in its Italian shape, 
if he knew it at all. 2 The Italian text has therefore been 
taken as the basis of the present discussion, while Dr. 
Hollstein's results, so far as they have appeared adequate 
or important, have been freely used. 

Both novella and play depart from the same idea, the 
.visit of a devil to earth to lead a human life. Both devils 
are bound by certain definite conditions. Belfagor must 
choose a wife, and live with her ten years ; Pug must return 
at midnight. Belfagor, like Pug, must be subject to 'ogni 
infortunio nel quale gli uomini scorrono.' 

In certain important respects Machiavelli's story differs 
essentially from Jonson's. Both Dekker and Machiavelli 
place the opening scene in the classical Hades instead of in 
the Christian hell. But Dekker's treatment of the situation 
is far more like Jonson's than is the novella's. Herford 
makes the distinction clear: 'Macchiavelli's Hades is the 
council-chamber of an Italian Senate, Dekker's might pass 
for some tavern haunt of Thames watermen. Dekker's 
fiends are the drudges of Pluto, abused for their indolence, 
flogged at will, and peremptorily sent where he chooses. 
Machiavelli's are fiends whose advice he requests with the 
gravest courtesy and deference, and who give it with dignity 
and independence.' Further, the whole object of the visit, 
instead of being the corruption of men, is a mere sociologi 
cal investigation. Pug is eager to undertake his mission; 
Belfagor is chosen by lot, and very loath to go. Pug 
becomes a servant, Belfagor a nobleman. 

But in one very important matter the stories coincide, 
that of the general character and fate of the two devils. 

1 A paraphrase of Belfagor occurs in the Conclusion of Barnaby 
Riche's Riche his Farewell to Militarie Profession, 1581, published 
for the Shakespeare Society by J. P. Collier, 1846. The name is 
changed to Balthasar, but the main incidents are the same. 

2 Jonson refers to Machiavelli's political writings in Timber (ed. 
Schelling, p. 38). 

xxxii Introduction 

As Hollstein points out, each comes with a firm resolve 
to do his best, each finds at once that his opponents are 
too strong for him, each through his own docility and 
stupidity meets repulse after repulse, ending in ruin, and 
each is glad to return to hell. This, of course, involves 
the very essence of Jonson's drama, and on its resemblance 
to the novella must be based any theory that Jonson was 
familiar with the latter. 

Of resemblance of specific details not much can be made. 
The two stories have in common the feature of demoniacal 
possession, but this, as we have seen, occurs also in the 
Rush legend. The fact that the princess speaks Latin, 
while Fitzdottrel surprises his auditors by his 'several lan 
guages,' is of no more significance. This is one of the 
stock indications of witchcraft. It is mentioned by Darrel, 
and Jonson could not have overlooked a device so obvious. 
Certain other resemblances pointed out by Dr. Hollstein are 
of only the most superficial nature. On the whole we are 
not warranted in concluding with any certainty that Jonson 
knew the novella at all. 

On the other hand, he must have been acquainted with 
the comedy of Grim, the Collier of Croydon (c 1600). 
Herford makes no allusion to this play, and, though it was 
mentioned as a possible source by A. W. Ward, 1 the subject 
has never been investigated. The author of Grim uses the 
Belfagor legend for the groundwork of his plot, but handles 
his material freely. In many respects the play is a close 
parallel to The Devil is an Ass. The same respect for the 
vices of earth is felt as in Dekker's and Jonson's plays. 
Belphegor sets out to 

make experiment 

If hell be not on earth as well as here. 

The circumstances of the sending bear a strong resem 
blance to the instructions given to Pug: 

1 Eng. Dram. Lit. 2. 606. 

Introduction xxxiii 

Thou shalt be subject unto human chance, 
So far as common wit cannot relieve thee. 
But whatsover happens in that time, 
Look not from us for succour or relief. 
This shalt thou do, and when the time's expired, 
Bring word to us what thou hast seen and done. 

So in Jonson: 

but become subject 

To all impression of the flesh, you take, 

So f arre as humane frailty : . . . 

But as you make your soone at nights relation, 

And we shall find, it merits from the State, 

You shall haue both trust from vs, and imployment. 

Belphegor is described as 'patient, mild, and pitiful;' and 
during his sojourn on earth he shows little aptitude for 
mischief, but becomes merely a butt and object of abuse. 
Belphegor's request for a companion, unlike that of Pug, 
is granted. He chooses his servant Akercock, who takes 
the form of Robin Goodfellow. Robin expresses many of 
the sentiments to be found in the mouth of Pug. With 
the latter's monologue (Text, 5. 2) compare Robin's 
exclamation : 

Zounds, I had rather be in hell than here. 

Neither Pug (Text, 2. 5. 3-4) nor Robin dares to return 
without authority : 

What shall I do? to hell I dare not go, 
Until my master's twelve months be expir'd. 

Like Pug (Text, 5. 6. 3-10) Belphegor worries over his 
reception in hell : 

How shall I give my verdict up to Pluto 
Of all these accidents? 

Finally Belphegor's sensational disappearance through the 
yawning earth comes somewhat nearer to Jonson than does 
the Italian original. The English comedy seems, indeed, 
to account adequately for all traces of the Belfagor story 
to be found in Jonson's play. 

xxxiv Introduction 

6. Summary 

It is certain that of the two leading ideas of Jonson's 
comedy, the sending of a devil to earth with the object of 
corrupting men is derived from the Rush legend. It is 
probable that the no less important motive of a baffled devil, 
happy to make his return to hell, is due either directly 
or indirectly to Machiavelli's influence. This motive, as 
we have seen, was strengthened by a body of legend and by 
the treatment of the devil in the morality play. 

7. The Figure of the Vice 

It is the figure of the Vice which makes Jonson's satire 
on the out-of-date moralities most unmistakable. This 
character has been the subject of much study and discus 
sion, and there is to-day no universally accepted theory as 
to his origin and development. In the literature of Jonson's 
day the term Vice is almost equivalent to harlequin. But 
whether this element of buffoonery is the fundamental trait 
of the character, and that of intrigue is due to a confusion 
in the meaning of the word, or whether the element of 
intrigue is original, and that of buffoonery has taken its 
place by a process of degeneration in the Vice himself, is 
still a disputed question. 

The theory of Cushman and of Eckhardt is substantially 
the same, and may be stated as follows. Whether or not the 
Vice be a direct descendant of the devil, it is certain that 
he falls heir to his predecessor's position in the drama, and 
that his development is strongly influenced by that char 
acter. Originally, like the devil, he represents the principle 
of evil and may be regarded as the summation of the seven 
deadly sins. From the beginning, however, he possessed 
more comic elements, much being ready made for him 
through the partial degeneration of the devil, while the 
material of the moralities was by no means so limited in 
scope as that of the mysteries. This comic element, com 
paratively slight at first, soon began to be cultivated inten- 



tionally, and gradually assumed the chief function, while 
the allegorical element was largely displaced. In course 
of time the transformation from the intriguer to the buffoon 
became complete. 1 Moreover, the rapidity of the trans 
formation was hastened by the influence of the fool, a new 
dramatic figure of independent origin, but the partial suc 
cessor upon the stage of the Vice's comedy part. As early 
as 1570 the union of fool and Vice is plainly visible. 2 In 
1576 we find express stage directions given for the Vice to 
fill in the pauses with improvised jests. 3 Two years later 
a Vice plays the leading role for the last time.* By 1584 
the Vice has completely lost his character of intriguer 5 , and 
in the later drama he appears only as an antiquated figure, 
where he is usually considered as identical with the fool 
or jester. 6 Cushman enumerates the three chief roles of 
the Vice as the opponent of the Good; the corrupter of 
man; and the buffoon. 

The Vice, however, is not confined to the moralities, but 
appears frequently in the comic interludes. According to 
the theory of Cushman, the name Vice stands in the begin 
ning for a moral and abstract idea, that of the principle 
of evil in the world, and must have originated in the 
moralities; and since it is applied to a comic personage in 
the interludes, this borrowing must have taken place after 
the period of degeneration had already begun. To this 
theory Chambers 7 offers certain important objections. He 
points out that, although Vices in the ordinary sense of 
the word are of course familiar personages in the morals,' 
the term Vice is not applied specifically to a character in 

^ckhardt, p. 195. 

2 In W. Wager's The longer thou I'west, the more fool thou art. 

3 In Wapull's The Tide tarrieth for No Man. 

4 Subtle Shift in The History of Sir Clyomon and Sir Clamydes. 
6 In Wilson's The Three Ladies of London. 

6 He is so identified in Chapman's Alphonsus, Emperor of Ger 
many c 1590 (Wks., ed. 1873, 3. 216), and in Stubbes' Anat., 1583. 
Nash speaks of the Vice as an antiquated figure as early as 1592 
(Wks. 2. 203). 

7 Med. Stage, pp. 203-5. 

xxxvi Introduction 

'any pre-Elizabethan moral interlude except the Marian 
Respublica' 1553. Furthermore, 'as a matter of fact, he 
comes into the interlude through the avenue of the farce.' 
The term is first applied to the leading comic characters 
in the farces of John Heywood, Love and The Weather, 
1520-30. These characters have traits more nearly resem 
bling those of the fool and clown than those of the intriguer 
of the moralities. Chambers concludes therefore that 'the 
character of the vice is derived from that of the domestic 
fool or jester/ and that the term was borrowed by the 
authors of the moralities from the comic interludes. 

These two views are widely divergent, and seem at first 
wholly irreconcilable. The facts of the case, however, are, 
I believe, sufficiently clear to warrant the following con 
clusions: (i) The early moralities possessed many alle 
gorical characters representing vices in the ordinary sense 
of the word. (2) From among these vices we may dis 
tinguish in nearly every play a single character as in a 
preeminent degree the embodiment of evil. (3) To this 
chief character the name of Vice was applied about 1553, 
and with increasing frequency after that date. (4) What 
ever may have been the original meaning of the word, it 
must have been generally understood in the moralities in 
the sense now usually attributed to it; for (5) The term 
was applied in the moralities only to a character in some 
degree evil. Chambers instances The Tide tarrieth for No 
Man and the tragedy of Horestes, where the Vice bears 
the name of Courage, as exceptions. The cases, however, 
are misleading. In the former, Courage is equivalent to 
'Purpose,' 'Desire,' and is a distinctly evil character. 1 In 
the latter he reveals himself in the second half of the play 
as Revenge, and although he incites Horestes to an act of 
justice, he is plainly opposed to 'Amyte,' and he is finally 
rejected and discountenanced. Moreover he is here a seri 
ous figure, and only occasionally exhibits comic traits. He 
cannot therefore be considered as supporting the theory 

1 Eckhardt, p. 145. 

Introduction xxxvii 

of the original identity of the fool and the Vice. (6) The 
Vice of the comic interludes and the leading character of 
the moralities are distinct figures. The former was from 
the beginning a comic figure or buffoon; 1 the latter was in 
the beginning serious, and continued to the end to preserve 
serious traits. With which of these two figures the term 
Vice originated, and by which it was borrowed from the 
other, is a matter of uncertainty and is of minor consequence. 
These facts, however, seem certain, and for the present dis 
cussion sufficient: that the vices of the earlier and of the 
later moralities represent the same stock figure ; that this 
figure stood originally for the principle of evil, and only in 
later days became confused with the domestic fool or jester; 
that the process of degeneration was continuous and grad 
ual, and took place substantially in the manner outlined by 
Cushman and Eckhardt ; and that, while to the playwright 
of Jonson's day the term was suggestive primarily of the 
buffoon, it meant also an evil personage, who continued to 
preserve certain lingering traits from the character of 
intriguer in the earlier moralities. 

8. Jonson's Use of the Vice 

The position of the Vice has been discussed at some 
length because of its very important bearing on Jonson's 
comedy. It is evident, even upon a cursory reading, that 
Jonson has not confined himself to the conception of the 
Vice obtainable from a familiarity with the interludes 
alone, as shown in Heywood's farces or the comedy of 
Jack Juggler. The character of Iniquity, though fully 
identified with the buffoon of the later plays, is never 
theless closely connected in the author's mind with the 
intriguer of the old moralities. This is clear above all 
from the use of the name Iniquity, from his association 

1 Sometimes he is even a virtuous character. See Eckhardt's 
remarks on Archipropheta, p. 170. Merry Report in Heywood's 
Weather constantly moralizes, and speaks of himself as the servant 
of God in contrast with the devil. 

xxxviii Introduction 

with the devil, and from Pug's desire to use him as a means 
of corrupting his playfellows. Thus, consciously or uncon 
sciously on Jonson's part, Iniquity presents in epitome the 
history of the Vice. 

His very name, as we have said, links him with the 
morality-play. In fact, all the Vices suggested, Iniquity, 
Fraud, Covetousness, and Lady Vanity, are taken from the 
moralities. The choice of Iniquity was not without mean 
ing, and was doubtless due to its more general and inclusive 
significance. In Shakespeare's time Vice and Iniquity 
seem to have been synonymous terms (see Schmidt), from 
which it has been inferred that Iniquity was the Vice in 
many lost moralities. 1 

Of the original Vice-traits Iniquity lays vigorous claim 
to that of the corrupter of man. Pug desires a Vice that 
he may 'practice there-with any play-fellow,' and Iniquity 
comes upon the stage with voluble promises to teach his 
pupil to 'cheat, lie, cog and swagger.' He offers also to 
lead him into all the disreputable precincts of the city. 
Iniquity appears in only two scenes, Act I. Sc. I and Act 
5. Sc. 6. In the latter he reverses the usual process and 
carries away the devil to hell. This point has already been 
discussed (p. xxiv). 

Aside from these two particulars, Iniquity is far nearer 
to the fool than to the original Vice. As he comes skipping 
upon the stage in the first scene, reciting his galloping 
doggerel couplets, we see plainly that the element of buf 
foonery is uppermost in Jonson's mind. Further evidence 
may be derived from the particularity with which Iniquity 
describes the costume which he promises to Pug, and which 
we are doubtless to understand as descriptive of his own. 
Attention should be directed especially to the wooden dag 
ger, the long cloak, and the slouch hat. Cushman says (p. 
125) : 'The vice enjoys the greatest freedom in the matter 

designation for the Vice first appears in Nice Wanton, 1547- 
53, then in King Darius, 1565, and Histriomastix, 1599 (printed 

Introduction xxxix 

of dress ; he is not confined to any stereotyped costume ; 
. . . the opinion that he is always or usually dressed in 
a fool's costume has absolutely no justification.' The 
wooden dagger, a relic of the Roman stage, 1 is the most 
frequently mentioned article of equipment. It is first 
found (1553-8) as part of the apparel of Jack Juggler in 
a print illustrating that play, reproduced by Dodsley. It 
is also mentioned in Like Will to Like, Hickescorner, King 
Darius, etc. The wooden dagger was borrowed, however, 
from the fool's costume, and is an indication of the grow 
ing identification of the Vice with the house-fool. That 
Jonson recognized it as such is evident from his Expostu 
lation with Inigo Jones : 

No velvet suit you wear will alter kind ; 
A wooden dagger is a dagger of wood. 

The long cloak, twice mentioned (i. I. 51 and 85), is 
another property borrowed from the fool. The natural fool 
usually wore a long gown-like dress, 2 and this was later 
adopted as a dress for the artificial fool. Muckle John, the 
court fool of Charles I., was provided with 'a long coat and 
suit of scarlet-colour serge.' 3 

Satan's reply to Pug's request for a Vice is, however, 
the most important passage on this subject. He begins 
by saying that the Vice, whom he identifies with the house 
fool, is fifty years out of date. Only trivial and absurd 
parts are left for Iniquity to play, the mountebank tricks 
of the city and the tavern fools. Douce (pp. 499 f.) men 
tions nine kinds of fools, among which the following 
appear: i. The general domestic fool. 4. The city or cor 
poration fool. 5. Tavern fools. Satan compares Iniquity 
with each of these in turn. The day has gone by, he says, 

When euery great man had his Vice stand by him, 
In his long coat, shaking his wooden dagger. 

1 Wright, Hist, of Caricature, p. 106. 

2 Doran, p. 182. 

3 Ibid., p. 210. 

xl Introduction 

Then he intimates that Iniquity may be able to play the 
tavern fool: 

Where canst thou carry him? except to Tauernes? 
To mount vp ona joynt-stoole, with a lewes-trumpe, 
To put downe Cokeley, and that must be to Citizens ? 

And finally he compares him with the city fool: 

Hee may perchance, in taile of a Sheriffes dinner, 
Skip with a rime o' the table, from New-nothing, 
And take his Almaine-leape into a custard. 

Thus not only does Jonson identify the Vice with the fool, 
but with the fool in his senility. The characteristic func 
tions of the jester in the Shakespearian drama, with his 
abundant store of improvised jests, witty retorts, and irre 
sistible impudence, have no part in this character. He is 
merely the mountebank who climbs upon a tavern stool, 
skips over the table, and leaps into corporation custards. 

Iniquity, then, plays no real part in the drama. His 
introduction is merely for the purpose of satire. In The 
Staple of News the subject is renewed, and treated with 
greater directness : 

'Tat. I would fain see the fool, gossip; the fool is the 
finest man in the company, they say, and has all the wit: 
he is the very justice o' peace o' the play, and can commit 
whom he will and what he will, error, absurdity, as the toy 
takes him, and no man say black is his eye, but laugh at him/ 

In Epigram 1/5, On the Town's Honest Man, Jonson 
again identifies the Vice with the mountebank, almost in 
the same way as he does in The Devil is an Ass : 

this is one 

Suffers no name but a description 

Being no vicious person but the Vice 

About the town; . . . 

At every meal, where it doth dine or sup, 

The cloth's no sooner gone, but it gets up, 

And shifting of its faces, doth play more 

Parts than the Italian could do with his door. 

Acts old Iniquity and in the fit 

Of miming gets the opinion of a wit. 

Introduction xli 


It was from Aristophanes 1 that Jonson learned to com 
bine with such boldness the palpable with the visionary, 
the material with the abstract. He surpassed even his 
master in the power of rendering the combination a con 
vincing one, and his method was always the same. Fond 
as he was of occasional flights of fancy, his mind was 
fundamentally satirical, so that the process of welding the 
apparently discordant elements was always one of rational 
izing the fanciful rather than of investing the actual with 
a far-away and poetic atmosphere. Thus even his purely 
supernatural scenes present little incongruity. Satan and 
Iniquity discuss strong waters and tobacco, Whitechapel 
and Billingsgate, with the utmost familiarity; even hell's 
'most exquisite tortures' are adapted in part from the 
homely proverbs of the people. In the use of his sources 
three tendencies are especially noticeable: the motivation 
of borrowed incidents ; the adjusting of action on a moral 
basis ; the reworking of his own favorite themes and 

i. General Treatment of the Plot 

For the main plot we have no direct source. It rep 
resents, however, Jonson's typical method. It has been 
pointed out 2 that the characteristic Jonsonian comedy 
always consists of two groups, the intriguers and the 
victims. In The Devil is an Ass the most purely comic 
motive of the play is furnished by a reversal of the 
usual relation subsisting between these two groups. Here 
the devil, who was wont to be looked upon as arch- 
intriguer, is constantly 'fooled off and beaten/ and thus 
takes his position as the comic butt. Pug, in a sense, 
represents a satirical trend. Through him Jonson satirizes 
the outgrown supernaturalism which still clung to the skirts 

1 See Herford, p. 318. 

2 Woodbridge, Studies, p. 33. 

xlii Introduction 

of Jacobean realism, and at the same time paints in lively 
colors the vice of a society against which hell itself is power 
less to contend. It is only, however, in a general way, 
where the devil stands for a principle, that Pug may be 
considered as in any degree satirical. In the particular 
incident he is always a purely comic figure, and furnishes 
the mirth which results from a sense of the incongruity 
between anticipation and accomplishment. 

Fitzdottrel, on the other hand, is mainly satirical. 
Through him Jonson passes censure upon the city gallant, 
the attendant at the theatre, the victim of the prevalent 
superstitions, and even the pretended demoniac. His 
dupery, as in the case of his bargain with Wittipol, excites 
indignation rather than mirth, and his final discomfiture 
affords us almost a sense of poetic justice. This character 
stands in the position of chief victim. 

In an intermediate position are Merecraft and Everill. 
They succeed in swindling Fitzdottrel and Lady Tailbush, 
but are in turn played upon by the chief intriguer, Wittipol, 
with his friend Manly. Jonson's moral purpose is here 
plainly visible, especially in contrast to Plautus, with whom 
the youthful intriguer is also the stock figure. The motive 
of the young man's trickery in the Latin comedy is usually 
unworthy and selfish. That of Wittipol, on the other hand, 
is wholly disinterested, since he is represented as having 
already philosophically accepted the rejection of his 
advances at the hands of Mrs. Fitzdottrel. 

In construction the play suffers from overabundance of 
material. Instead of a single main line of action, which 
is given clear precedence, there is rather a succession of 
elaborated episodes, carefully connected and motivated, but 
not properly subordinated. The plot is coherent and intri 
cate rather than unified. This is further aggravated by 
the fact that the chief objects of satire are imperfectly 
understood by readers of the present day. 

Jonson observes unity of time, Pug coming to earth in 
the morning and returning at midnight. With the excep- 

Introduction xliii 

tion of the first scene, which is indeterminate, and seems at 
one moment to be hell, and the next London, the action is 
confined to the City, but hovers between Lincoln's Inn, 
Newgate, and the house of Lady Tailbush. Unity of action 
is of course broken by the interference of the devil-plot and 
the episodic nature of the satirical plot. The main lines 
of action may be discussed separately. 

In the first act chief prominence is given to the intrigue 
between Wittipol and Mrs. Fitzdottrel. This interest is 
continued through the second act, but practically dropped 
after this point. In Act 4 we find that both lovers have 
recovered from their infatuation, and the intrigue ends by 
mutual consent. 

The second act opens with the episode of Merecraft's 
plot to gull Fitzdottrel. The project of the dukedom of 
Drownedland is given chief place, and attention is centred 
upon it both here and in the following scenes. Little use, 
however, is made of it in the motivation of action. This is 
left for another project, the office of the Master of Depend 
encies (quarrels) in the next act. This device is introduced 
in an incidental way, and we are not prepared for the 
important place which it takes in the development of the 
plot. Merecraft, goaded by Everill, hits upon it merely as 
a temporary makeshift to extort money from Fitzdottrel. 
The latter determines to make use of the office in prose 
cuting his quarrel with Wittipol. In preparation for the 
duel, and in accordance with the course of procedure laid 
down by Everill, he resolves to settle his estate. Merecraft 
and Everill endeavor to have the deed drawn in their own 
favor, but through the interference of Wittipol the whole 
estate is made over to Manly, who restores it to Mrs. Fitz-i 
dottrel. This project becomes then the real turning-point 
of the play. 

The episode of Guilthead and Plutarchus in Act 3 is 
only slightly connected with the main plot. That of 
Wittipol's disguise as a Spanish lady, touched upon in the 
first two acts, becomes the chief interest of the fourth. It 

xliv Introduction 

furnishes much comic material, and the characters of Lady 
Tailbush and Lady Eitherside offer the poet the opportunity 
for some of his cleverest touches in characterization and 
contrast. 1 The scene, however, is introduced for incidental 
purposes, the satirization of foreign fashions and the follies 
of London society, and is overelaborated. The catalogue of 
cosmetics is an instance of Jonson's intimate acquaintance 
with recondite knowledge standing in the way of his art. 

Merecraft's 'after game' in the fifth act is of the nature 
of an appendix. The play might well have ended with the 
frustration of his plan to get possession of the estate. This 
act is introduced chiefly for the sake of a satire upon pre 
tended demoniacs and witch-finders. It also contains the 
conclusion of the devil-plot. 

The Devil is an Ass will always remain valuable as a 
historical document, and as a record of Jonson's own atti 
tude towards the abuses of his times. In the treatment of 
Fitzdottrel and Merecraft among the chief persons, and of 
Plutarchus Guilthead among the lesser, this play belongs 
to Jonson's character-drama. 2 It does not, however, belong 
to the pure humor-comedy. Like The Alchemist, and in 
marked contrast to Every Man out of his Humor, interest 
is sought in plot development. In the scene between Lady 
Tailbush and Lady Eitherside, the play becomes a comedy 
of manners, and in its attack upon state abuses it is semi- 
political in nature. Both Gifford and Swinburne have 
observed the ethical treatment of the main motives. 

With the exception of Prologue and Epilogue, the dog 
gerel couplets spoken by Iniquity, Wittipol's song (2. 6. 
94) , and some of the lines quoted by Fitzdottrel in the last 
scene, the play is written in blank verse throughout. 
Occasional lines of eight (2. 2. 122), nine (2. I. i), twelve 

1 Contrasted companion-characters are a favorite device with 
Jonson. Compare Corvino, Corbaccio, and Voltore in The Fox, 
Ananias and Tribulation Wholesome in The Alchemist, etc. 

2 It should be noticed that in the case of Merecraft the method 
employed is the caricature of a profession, as well as the exposition 
of personality. 

Introduction xlv 

(i. i. 33) or thirteen (i. i. 113) syllables are introduced. 
Most of these could easily be normalized by a slight 
emendation or the slurring of a syllable in pronunciation. 
Many of the lines, however, are rough and difficult of 
scansion. Most of the dialogue is vigorous, though Witti- 
pol's language is sometimes affected and unnatural (cf. 
Act i. Sc. i). His speech, i. 6. 111-148, is classical in 
tone, but fragmentary and not perfectly assimilated. The 
song already referred to possesses delicacy and some beauty 
of imagery, but lacks Jonson's customary polish and 

As a work of art the play must rely chiefly upon the 
vigor of its satiric dialogue and the cleverness of its char 
acter sketches. It lacks the chief excellences of construc 
tion unity of interest, subordination of detail, steady and 
uninterrupted development, and prompt conclusion. 

2. Chief Sources of the Plot 

The first source to be pointed out was that of Act i. Sc. 
4-6. 1 This was again noticed by Koeppel, who mentions 
one of the word-for-word borrowings, and points out the 
moralistic tendency in Jonson's treatment of the husband, 
and his rejection of the Italian story's licentious con 
clusion. 2 The original is from Boccaccio's Decameron, 
the fifth novella of the third day. Boccaccio's title is as 
follows: Tl Zima dona a messer Francesco Vergellesi un 
suo pallafreno, e per quello con licenzia di lui parla alia 
sua donna, ed ella tacendo, egli in persona di lei si risponde, 
e secondo la sua risposta poi 1'effetto segue.' The substance 
of the story is this. II Zima, with the bribe of a palfrey, 
makes a bargain with Francesco. For the gift he is granted 
an interview with the wife of Francesco and in the latter's 
presence. This interview, however, unlike that in The 
Devil is an Ass, is not in the husband's hearing. To 
guard against any mishap, Francesco secretly commands 

1 Langbaine, Eng. Dram. Poets, p. 289. 

2 Quellen Studien, p. 15. 

xlvi Introduction 

his wife to make no answer to the lover, warning her that 
he will be on the lookout for any communication on her 
part. The wife, like Mrs. Fitzdottrel, upbraids her hus 
band, but is obliged to submit. II Zima begins his court 
ship, but, though apparently deeply affected, she makes no 
answer. The young man then suspects the husband's 
trick (e poscia s'incomincio ad accorgere dell' arte usata 
dal cavaliere). He accordingly hits upon the device of 
supposing himself in her place and makes an answer for 
her, granting an assignation. As a signal he suggests the 
hanging out of the window of two handkerchiefs. He 
then answers again in his own person. Upon the hus 
band's rejoining them he pretends to be deeply chagrined, 
complains that he has met a statue of marble (una statua 
di marmo) and adds: 'Voi avete comperato il pallafreno, 
e io non 1'ho venduto.' II Zima is successful in his ruse, 
and Francesco's wife yields completely to his seduction. 

A close comparison of this important source is highly 
instructive. Verbal borrowings show either that Jonson 
had the book before him, or that he remembered many of 
the passages literally. Thus Boccaccio's 'una statua di 
marmo' finds its counterpart in a later scene 1 where Mrs. 
Fitzdottrel says : 'I would not haue him thinke hee met a 
statue.' Fitzdottrel's satisfaction at the result of the bar 
gain is like that of Francesco : T ha' kept the contract, and 
the cloake is mine' (omai e ben mio il pallafreno, che fu 
tuo). Again Wittipol's parting words resemble II Zima's: 
'It may fall out, that you ha' bought it deare, though I ha' 
not sold it.' 2 In the mouths of the two heroes, however, 
these words mean exactly opposite things. With II Zima 
it is a complaint, and means : 'You have won the cloak, but 
I have got nothing in return.' With Wittipol, on the other 
hand, it is an open sneer, and hints at further developments. 
The display of handkerchiefs at the window is another bor 
rowing. Fitzdottrel says sarcastically: 

1 2. 2. 69. 

2 Mentioned by Koeppel, p. 15. 

Introduction xlvii 

I'll take carefull order, 

That shee shall hang forth ensignes at the window. 

Finally Wittipol, like II Zima, suspects a trick when Mrs. 
Fitzdottrel refuses to answer: 

How ! not any word ? Nay, then, I taste a tricke in't. 

But precisely here Jonson blunders badly. In Boccaccio's 
story the trick was a genuine one. II Zima stands waiting 
for an answer. When no response is made he begins to 
suspect the husband's secret admonition, and to thwart it 
hits upon the device of answering himself. But in Jonson 
there is no trick at all. Fitzdottrel does indeed require his 
wife to remain silent, but by no means secretly. His 
command is placed in the midst of a rambling discourse 
addressed alternately to his wife and to the young men. 
There is not the slightest hint that any part of this speech 
is whispered in his wife's ear, and Wittipol enters upon his 
courtship with full knowledge of the situation. This fact 
deprives Wittipol's speech in the person of Mrs. Fitzdottrel 
of its character as a clever device, so that the whole point 
of Boccaccio's story is weakened, if not destroyed. I can 
not refrain in conclusion from making a somewhat doubtful 
conjecture. It is noticeable that while Jonson follows so 
many of the details of this story with the greatest fidelity 
he substitutes the gift of a cloak for that of the original 
'pallafreno' (palfrey). 1 The word is usually written 'pala- 
freno' and so occurs in Florio. Is it possible that Jonson 
was unfamiliar with the word, and, not being able to find it 
in a dictionary, conjectured that it was identical with 'palla/ 
a cloak? 

In other respects Jonson's handling of the story displays 
his characteristic methods. Boccaccio spends very few 
words in description of either husband or suitor. Jonson, 
however, is careful to make plain the despicable character 
of Fitzdottrel, while Wittipol is represented as an attractive 
and high-minded young man. Further than this, both Mrs. 

1 So spelled in 1573 ed. In earlier editions 'palafreno.' 

xlviii Introduction 

Fitzdottrel and Wittipol soon recover completely from their 
infatuation. . 

Koeppel has suggested a second source from the Decame 
ron, Day 3, Novella 3. The title is: 'Sotto spezie di con- 
fessione e di purissima coscienza una donna, innamorata 
d'un giovane, induce un solenne frate, senza avvedersene 
egli, a dar modo che'l piacer di lei avessi intero effetto.' 
The story is briefly this. A lady makes her confessor the 
means of establishing an acquaintance with a young man with 
whom she has fallen in love. Her directions are conveyed 
to him under the guise of indignant prohibitions. By a 
series of messages of similar character she finally succeeds 
in informing him of the absence of her husband and the 
possibility of gaining admittance to her chamber by climb 
ing a tree in the garden. Thus the friar becomes the 
unwitting instrument of the very thing which he is trying 
to prevent. So in Act 2. Sc. 2 and 6, Mrs. Fitzdottrel sus 
pects Pug of being her husband's spy. She dares not 
therefore send Wittipol a direct message, but requests him 
to cease his attentions to her 

At the Gentlemans chamber-window in Lincolnes-Inne there, 
That opens to my gallery. 

Wittipol takes the hint, and promptly appears at the place 

Von Rapp 1 has mentioned certain other scenes as prob 
ably of Italian origin, but, as he advances no proofs, his 
suggestions may be neglected. It seems to me possible that 
in the scene above referred to, where the lover occupies 
a house adjoining that of his mistress, and their secret 
amour is discovered by her servant and reported to his 
master, Jonson had in mind the same incident in Plautus' 
Miles Gloriosus, Act. 2. Sc. i f. 

The trait of jealousy which distinguishes Fitzdottrel was 
suggested to some extent by the character of Euclio in the 
Aulularia, and a passage of considerable length 2 is freely 

1 Studien, p. 232. 

2 See note 2. i. 168 f. 

Introduction xlix 

paraphrased from that play. The play and the passage 
had already been used in The Case is Altered. 

Miss Woodbridge has noticed that the scene in which 
Lady Tailbush and her friends entertain Wittipol disguised 
as a Spanish lady is similar to Act 3. Sc. 2 of The Silent 
Woman, where the collegiate ladies call upon Epicoene. 
The trick of disguising a servant as a woman occurs in 
Plautus' Caslna, Acts 4 and 5. 

For the final 'scene, where Fitzdottrel plays the part of 
a bewitched person, Jonson made free use of contemporary 
books and tracts. The motive of pretended possession had 
already appeared in The Fox (Wks. 3. 312), where symp 
toms identical with or similar to those in the present passage 
are mentioned swelling of the belly, vomiting crooked pins, 
staring of the eyes, and foaming at the mouth. The imme 
diate suggestion in this place may have come either through 
the Rush story or through Machiavelli's novella. That Jon- 
son's materials can be traced exclusively to any one source is 
hardly to be expected. Not only were trials for witchcraft 
numerous, but they must have formed a common subject 
of speculation and discussion. The ordinary evidences of 
possession were doubtless familiar to the well-informed man 
without the need of reference to particular records. And 
it is of the ordinary evidences that the poet chiefly makes 
use. Nearly all these are found repeatedly in the literature 
of the period. 

We know, on the other hand, that Jonson often preferred 
to get his information through the medium of books. It is 
not surprising, therefore, that Merecraft proposes to imi 
tate 'little. Barrel's tricks,' and to find that the dramatist 
has resorted in large measure to this particular source. 1 

The Barrel controversy was carried on through a num 
ber of years between John Barrel, a clergyman (see note 
5. 3. 6), on the one hand, and Bishop Samuel Harsnet, John 
Beacon and John Walker, on the other. Of the tracts pro- 

1 Gifford points out the general resemblance. He uses Hutchin- 
son's book for comparison. 

1 Introduction 

duced in this controversy the two most important are 
Harsnet's Discovery of the Fraudulent Practises of John 
Darrel, 1 1599, and Barrel's True Narration of the Strange 
and Grevous Vexation by the Devil of 7 Persons in Lan 
cashire and William Somers of Nottingham, . . . 1600. 
The story is retold in Francis Hutchinson's Historical Essay 
concerning Witchcraft, London, 1720. 

Jonson follows the story as told in these two books with 
considerable fidelity. The accompaniments of demonic 
possession which Fitzdottrel exhibits in the last scene are 
enumerated in two previous speeches. Practically all of 
these are to be found in Barrel's account: 

. . . roule but wi' your eyes, 
And foam at th' mouth. (Text, 5. 3. 2-3) 

. . . to make your belly swell, 
And your eyes turne, to foame, to stare, to gnash 
Your teeth together, and to beate your selfe, 
Laugh loud, and faine six voices. (5. 5. 25 f.) 

They may be compared with the description given by 
Barrel : 'He was often scene ... to beate his head 
and other parts of his body against the ground and bed 
stead. In most of his fitts, he did swell in his body ; . . . 
if he were standing when the fit came he wold be cast 
headlong upon the ground, or fall doune, drawing then his 
lips awry, gnashing with his teeth, wallowing and foaming. 
. . . Presently after he would laughe loud and shrill, 
his mouth being shut close.' (Barrel, p. 181.) 'He was 
also continually torne in very fearfull manner, and dis 
figured in his face. . . . now he gnashed with his teeth ; 

1 This book, so far as I know, is not to be found in any American 
library. My knowledge of its contents is derived wholly from Bar 
rel's answer, A Detection of that sinnful, shamful, lying and ridicu 
lous Discours, of Samuel Harshnet, entituled: A Discoverie, etc. 
. . . Imprinted 1600, which apparently cites all of Harsnet's 
more important points for refutation. It has been lent me through 
the kindness of Professor George L. Burr from the Cornell Library. 
The quotations from Harsnet in the following pages are accordingly 
taken from the excerpts in the Detection. 

Introduction li 

now he fomed like to the horse or boare, . . . not to 
say anything of his fearfull staring with his eyes, and 
incredible gaping.' (Barrel, p. 183.) The swelling, foam 
ing, gnashing, staring, etc., are also mentioned by Harsnet 
(pp. 147-8), as well as the jargon of languages (p. 165). 

The scene is prepared before Merecraft's appearance 
(Text, 5. 5. 40. Cf. Detection, p. 92), and Fitzdottrel is 
discovered lying in bed (Text, 5. 5. 39; 5. 8. 40). Simi 
larly, Somers performed many of his tricks 'under a 
coverlet' (Detection, p. 104). Sir Paul Eitherside then 
enters and 'interprets all.' This is imitated directly from 
Harsnet, where we read: 'So. [Somers] acting those ges 
tures M. Dar. did expound them very learnedlye, to signify 
this or that sinne that raigned in Nott. [Nottingham].' 
Paul's first words are : 'This is the Diuell speakes and 
laughes in him/ So Harsnet tells us that 'M. Dar. vpon 
his first comming vnto Som. affirmed that it was not So. 
that spake in his fitts, but the diuell by him.' Both Fitz 
dottrel (Text, 5. 8. 115) and Somers (Narration, p. 182) 
talk in Greek. The devil in Fitzdottrel proposes to 'break 
his necke in jest' (Text, 5. 8. 117), and a little later to bor 
row money (5. 8. 119). The same threat is twice made in 
the True Narration (pp. 178 and 180). In the second of 
these passages Somers is met by an old woman, who tries 
to frighten him into giving her money. Otherwise, she 
declares, 'I will throwe thee into this pit, and breake thy 
neck.' The mouse 'that should ha' come forth' (Text, 5. 
8. 144) is mentioned by both narrators (Detection, p. 140; 
Narration, p. 184), and the pricking of the body with pins 
and needles (Text, 5. 8. 49) is found in slightly altered 
form (Detection, p. 135; Narration, p. 174). Finally the 
clapping of the hands (Text, 5. 8. 76) is a common feature 
(Narration, p. 182). The last mentioned passage finds a 
still closer parallel in a couplet from the contemporary 
ballad, which Gifford quotes from Hutchinson (p. 249) : 

And by the clapping of his Hands 
He shew'd the starching of our Bands. 

Hi Introduction 

Of the apparatus supplied by Merecraft for the impos 
ture, the soap, nutshell, tow, and touchwood (Text, 5.3. 
3-5), the bladders and bellows (Text, 5. 5. 48), some are 
doubtless taken from Harsnet's Discovery, though Barrel 
does not quote these passages in the Detection. We find, 
however, that Barrel was accused of supplying Somers with 
black lead to foam with (Detection, p. 160), and Gifford 
says that the soap and bellows are also mentioned in the 
'Bishop's book/ 

Though Jonson drew so largely upon this source, many 
details are supplied by his own imagination. Ridiculous 
as much of it may seem to the modern reader, it is by no 
means overdrawn. In fact it may safely be affirmed that 
no such realistic depiction of witchcraft exists elsewhere in 
the whole range of dramatic literature. 

3. Prototypes of the leading Characters 

The position of the leading characters has already been 
indicated. Pug, as the comic butt and innocent gull, is 
allied to Master Stephen and Master Matthew of Every 
Man in his Humor, Bapper of The Alchemist, and Cokes 
of Bartholomew Fair. Fitzdottrel, another type of the 
gull, is more closely related to Tribulation Wholesome in 
The Alchemist, and even in some respects to Cor vino and 
Voltore in The Fox. Wittipol and Manly, the chief 
intriguers, hold approximately the same position as 
Wellbred and Knowell in Every Man in his Humor, Win- 
wife and Quarlous in Bartholomew Fair, and Bauphine, 
Clerimont, and Truewit in The Silent Woman. Merecraft 
is related in his character of swindler to Subtle in The 
Alchemist, and in his character of projector to Sir Politick 
Wouldbe in The Fox. 

The contemptible 'lady of spirit and woman of fashion' 
is one of Jonson's favorite types. She first appears in the 
persons of Fallace and Saviolina in Every Man out of his 
Humor; then in Cynthia's Revels, where Moria and her 
friends play the part; then as Cytheris in Poetaster, Lady 

Introduction liii 

Politick in The Alchemist, the collegiate ladies in The Silent 

Woman, and Fulvia and Sempronia in Catiline. The same 
affectations and vices are satirized repeatedly. An evident 
prototype of Justice Eitherside is found in the person of 
Adam Overdo in Bartholomew Fair. Both are justices of 
the peace, both are officious, puritanical, and obstinate. 
Justice Eitherside's denunciation of the devotees of tobacco 
finds its counterpart in a speech in Bartholomew Fair, and 
his repeated 'I do detest it' reminds one of Overdo's 
frequent expressions of horror at the enormities which he 
constantly discovers. 

4. Minor Sources 

The Devil is an Ass is not deeply indebted to the classics. 
Jonson borrows twice from Horace, I. 6. 131, and 2. 4. 
27 f. The half dozen lines in which the former passage 
occurs (i. 6. 126-132) are written in evident imitation of 
the Horatian style. Two passages are also borrowed from 
Plautus, 2. i. 168 f., already mentioned, and 3. 6. 38-9. A 
single passage (2. 6. 104 f.) shows the influence of Martial. 
These passages are all quoted in the notes. 

The source of Wittipol's description of the 'Cioppino', 
and the mishap attendant upon its use, was probably taken 
from a contemporary book of travels. A passage in Coryat's 
Crudities furnishes the necessary information and a similar 
anecdote, and was doubtless used by Jonson (see note 4. 
4. 69). Coryat was patronized by the poet. Similarly, 
another passage in the Crudities seems to have suggested 
the project of the forks (see note 5. 4. 17). 

A curious resemblance is further to be noted between 
several passages in The Devil is an Ass and Underwoods 
62. The first draft of this poem may have been written 
not long before the present play (see Fleay, Chron. i. 
329-30) and so have been still fresh in the poet's mind. 
The passage DA. 3. 2. 44-6 shows unmistakably that the 
play was the borrower, and not the poem. Gifford suggests 
that both passages were quoted from a contemporary 

liv Introduction 

posture-book, but the passage in the epigram gives no indi 
cation of being a quotation. 

The chief parallels are as follows: U. 62. 10-14 and 
DA. 3. 3. 165-6; U. 62. 21-2 and DA. 3. 3. 169-72; U. 
62. 25-6 and DA. 3. 2. 44-6; U. 62. 45-8 and DA. 2. 
8. 19-22. These passages are all quoted in the notes. In 
addition, there are a few striking words and phrases that 
occur in both productions, but the important likenesses are 
all noted above. In no other poem except Charis, The 
Gipsies, and Underwoods 36* where the borrowings are 
unmistakably intentional, is there any thing like the same 
reworking of material as in this instance. 


The Devil is an Ass has been called of all Jonson's plays 
since Cynthia's Revels the most obsolete in the subjects of 
its satire. 2 The criticism is true, and it is only with some 
knowledge of the abuses which Jonson assails that we can 
appreciate the keenness and precision of his thrusts. The 
play is a colossal expose of social abuses. It attacks the 
aping of foreign fashions, the vices of society, and above 
all the cheats and impositions of the unscrupulous swindler. 
But we miss its point if we fail to see that Jonson's arraign 
ment of the society which permitted itself to be gulled 
is no less severe than that of the swindler who practised 
upon its credulity. Three institutions especially demand an 
explanation both for their own sake and for their bearing 
upon the plot. These are the duello, the monopoly, and the 
pretended demoniacal possession. 

i. The Duello 

The origin of private dueling is a matter of some 
obscurity. It was formerly supposed to be merely a devel 
opment of the judicial duel or combat, but this is uncertain. 

1 See Introduction, Section. C. IV. 
1 Swinburne, p. 65. 

Introduction Iv 

Dueling flourished on the Continent, and was especially 
prevalent in France during the reign of Henry III. Jonson 
speaks of the frequency of the practice in France in The 
Magnetic Lady. 

No private duel seems to have occurred in England before 
the sixteenth century, and the custom was comparatively rare 
until the reign of James I. Its introduction was largely 
due to the substitution of the rapier for the broadsword. 
Not long after this change in weapons fencing-schools 
began to be established and were soon very popular. 
Donald Lupton, in his London and the Countrey car 
bonadoed, 1632, says they were usually set up by 'some 
low-country soldier, who to keep himself honest from fur 
ther inconveniences, as also to maintain himself, thought 
upon this course and practises it.' 1 

The etiquette of the duel was a matter of especial con 
cern. The two chief authorities seem to have been Jerome 
Carranza, the author of a book entitled Filosofia de las 
Armas, 2 and Vincentio Saviolo, whose Practise was trans 
lated into English in 1595. It contained two parts, the first 
'intreating of the vse of the rapier and dagger/ the second 
'of honor and honorable quarrels.' The rules laid down in 
these books were mercilessly ridiculed by the dramatists; 
and the duello was a frequent subject of satire. 3 

By 1616 dueling must have become very common. Fre 
quent references to the subject are found about this time in 
the Calendar of State Papers. Under date of Decem 
ber 9, 1613, we read that all persons who go abroad to fight 

*Cf. also Gosson, School of Abuse, 1579; Dekker, A Knight's 
Conjuring, 1607; Overbury, Characters, ed. Morley, p. 66. 

2 See New Inn 2. 2; Every Man in I. 5; B. & Fl., Love's Pil 
grimage, Wks. ii. 317, 320. 

3 Cf. Albumasar, O. PI. 7. 185-6; Rom. q,nd Jul. 2. 4. 26; Twelfth 
Night 3. 4. 335; L. L. L. I. 2. 183; Massinger, Guardian, Wks., p. 
346. Mercutio evidently refers to Saviolo's book and the use of 
the rapier in Rom. and Jul. 3. I. 93. Here the expression, 'fight by 
the book', first occurs, used again by B. & FL, Elder Brother, Wks. 
10. 284; Dekker, Guls Horne-booke, ch. 4; As You Like it 5. 4. 
Dekker speaks of Saviolo, Non-dram. Wks. I. 120. 

Ivi Introduction 

duels are to be censured in the Star Chamber. On February 
17, 1614, 'a proclamation, with a book annexed/ was issued 
against duels, and on February 13, 1617, the King made a 
Star Chamber speech against dueling, 'on which he before 
published a sharp edict.' 

The passion for dueling was turned to advantage by 
a set of improvident bravos, who styled themselves 
'sword-men' or 'masters of dependencies,' a dependence 
being the accepted name for an impending quarrel. These 
men undertook to examine into the causes of a duel, and 
to settle or 'take it up' according to the rules laid down 
by the authorities on this subject. Their prey were the 
young men of fashion in the city, and especially 'country 
gulls,' who were newly come to town and were anxious to 
become sophisticated. The profession must have been 
profitable, for we hear of their methods being employed 
by the 'roaring boys' 1 and the masters of the fencing 
schools. 2 Fletcher in The Elder Brother, Wks. 10. 283, 
speaks of 

. . . the masters of dependencies 
That by compounding differences 'tween others 
Supply their own necessities, 

and Massinger makes similar comment in The Guardian, 
Wks., p. 343 : 

When two heirs quarrel, 
The swordsmen of the city shortly after 
Appear in plush, for their grave consultations 
In taking up the difference; some, I know, 
Make a set living on't. 

Another function of the office is mentioned by Ford in 
Fancies Chaste and Noble, Wks. 2. 241. The master 
would upon occasion 'brave' a quarrel with the novice for 
the sake of 'gilding his reputation,' and Massinger in The 
Maid of Honor, Wks., p. 190, asserts that he would even 

1 Overbury, ed. Morley, p. 72. 
'Ibid., p. 66. 

Introduction Ivii 

consent 'for a cloak with thrice-died velvet, and a cast 
suit' to be 'kick'd down the stairs.' In A King and No 
King, B. & Fl., Wks. 2. 310 f., Bessus consults with two of 
these 'Gentlemen of the Sword' in a ridiculous scene, in 
which the sword-men profess the greatest scrupulousness 
in examining every word and phrase, affirming that they 
cannot be 'too subtle in this business.' 

Jonson never loses an opportunity of satirizing these 
despicable bullies, who were not only ridiculous in their 
affectations, but who proved by their 'fomenting bloody 
quarrels' to be no small danger to the state. Bobadill, who 
is described as a Paul's Man, was in addition a pretender to 
this craft. Matthew complains that Downright has threat 
ened him with the bastinado, whereupon Bobadill cries out 
immediately that it is 'a most proper and sufficient depend 
ence' and adds: 'Come hither, you shall chartel him; I'll 
shew you a trick or two, you shall kill him with at pleas 
ure.' 1 Cavalier Shift, in Every Man out of his Humor, 
among various other occupations has the reputation of being 
able to 'manage a quarrel the best that ever you saw, for 
terms and circumstances.' We have an excellent picture 
of the ambitious novice in the person of Kastrill in The 
Alchemist. Kastrill, who is described as an 'angry boy,' 
comes to consult Subtle as to how to 'carry a business, 
manage a quarrel fairly.' Face assures him that Dr. 
Subtle is able to 'take the height' of any quarrel whatso 
ever, to tell 'in what degree of safety it lies,' 'how it may 
be borne,' etc. 

From this description of the 'master of dependencies' 
the exquisite humor of the passage in The Devil is an Ass 
3. 3. 60 f.) can be appreciated. Merecraft assures Fitz- 
dottrel that this occupation, in reality the refuge only of 
the Shifts and Bobadills of the city, is a new and important 
office about to be formally established by the state. In 
spite of all their speaking against dueling, he says, they 
have come to see the evident necessity of a public tribunal 

1 Every Man in, Wks. I. 35. 


Iviii Introduction 

to which all quarrels may be referred. It is by means of 
this pretended office that Merecraft attempts to swindle 
Fitzdottrel out of his entire estate, from which disaster he 
is saved only by the clever interposition of Wittipol. 

2. The Monopoly System 

Jonson's severest satire in The Devil is an Ass is directed 
against the projector. Through him the whole system of 
Monopolies is indirectly criticised. To understand the 
importance and timeliness of this attack, as well as the 
poet's own attitude on the subject, it is necessary to give a 
brief historical discussion of the system as it had developed 
and then existed. 

Royal grants with the avowed intention of instructing 
the English in a new industry had been made as early as 
the fourteenth century, 1 and the system had become gradu 
ally modified during the Tudor dynasty. In the sixteenth 
century a capitalist middle class rose to wealth and political 
influence. During the reign of Elizabeth a large part of 
Cecil's energies was directed toward the economic develop 
ment of the country. This was most effectually accom 
plished by granting patents to men who had enterprise 
enough to introduce a new art or manufacture, whether an 
importation from a foreign country or their own invention. 
The capitalist was encouraged to make this attempt by the 
grant of special privileges of manufacture for a limited 
period. 2 The condition of monopoly did not belong to the 
mediaeval system, but was first introduced under Elizabeth. 
So far the system had its economic justification, but 
unfortunately it did not stop here. Abuses began to creep 
in. Not only the manufacture, but the exclusive trade in 
certain articles, was given over to grantees, and commodities 
of the most common utility were Engrossed into the hands 

betters to John Kempe, 1331, Rymer's Foedera; Hulme, Law 
Quarterly Rev., vol. 12. 
1 Cunningham, Eng. Industry, Part I, p. 75. 

Introduction lix 

of these blood-suckers of the commonwealth.' 1 A remon 
strance of Parliament was made to Elizabeth in 1597, and 
again in 1601, and in consequence the Queen thought best 
to promise the annulling of all monopolies then existing, 
a promise which she in large measure fulfilled. But the 
immense growth of commerce under Elizabeth made it 
necessary for her successor, James I., to establish a system 
of delegation, and he accordingly adapted the system of 
granting patents to the existing needs. 2 Many new monop 
olies were granted during the early years of his reign, 
but in 1607 Parliament again protested, and he followed 
Elizabeth's example by revoking them all. After the sus 
pension of Parliamentary government in 1614 the system 
grew up again, and the old abuses became more obnoxious 
than ever. In 1621 Parliament addressed a second remon 
strance to James. The king professed ignorance, but 
promised redress, and in 1624 all the existing monopolies 
were abolished by the Statute 21 James I. c. 3. In Parlia 
ment's address to James 'the tender point of prerogative' 
was not disturbed, and it was contrived that all the blame 
and punishment should fall on the patentees. 3 

Of all the patents granted during this time, that which 
seems to have most attracted the attention of the dramatists 
was one for draining the Fens of Lincolnshire. Similar 
projects had frequently been attempted during the sixteenth 
century. In the list of patents before 1597, catalogued by 
Hulme, seven deal with water drainage in some form or 
other. The low lands on the east coast of England are 
exposed to inundation. 4 During the Roman occupation 
large embankments had been built, and during the Middle 
Ages these had been kept up partly through a commission 
appointed by the Crown, and partly through the efforts of 

1 D'Ewes, Complete Journal of the Houses of Lords and Commons, 
p. 646. 

'Cunningham, p. 21. 

* Craik 2. 24. Rushworth, Collection i. 24. 

4 For a more detailed account of the drainage of the Lincolnshire 
fens see Cunningham, pp. 112-119. 

Ix Introduction 

the monasteries at Ramsey and Crowland. After the dis 
solution of these monasteries it became necessary to take 
up anew the work of reclaiming the fen-land. An abortive 
attempt by the Earl of Lincoln had already been made when 
the Statute 43 Eliz. c. 10. n. was passed in the year 1601. 
This made legal the action of projectors in the recovery of 
marsh land. Many difficulties, however, such as lack of 
funds and opposition on the part of the inhabitants and 
neighbors of the fens, still stood in their way. In 1605 
Sir John Popham and Sir Thomas Fleming headed a com 
pany which undertook to drain the Great Level of the 
Cambridgeshire fens, consisting of more than 300,000 acres, 
at their own cost, on the understanding that 130,000 acres 
of the reclaimed land should fall to their share.. The 
project was a complete failure. Another statute granting 
a patent for draining the -fens is found in the seventh year 
of Jac. I. c. 20, and the attempt was renewed from time to 
time throughout the reigns of James and Charles I. It was 
not, however, until the Restoration that these efforts were 
finally crowned with success. 

When the remonstrance was made to James in 1621, the 
object of the petitioners was gained, as we have seen, by 
throwing all the blame upon the patentees and projectors. 
Similarly, the dramatists often prefer to make their attack, 
not by assailing the institution of monopolies, but by ridi 
cule of the offending subjects. 1 Two agents are regularly 
distinguished. There is the patentee, sometimes also called 
the projector, whose part it is to supply the funds for the 
establishment of the monopoly, and, if possible, the neces 
sary influence at Court; and the actual projector or inventor, 
who undertakes to furnish his patron with various projects 
of his own device. 

Jonson's is probably the earliest dramatic representation 
of the projector. Merecraft is a swindler, pure and simple, 
whose schemes are directed not so much against the people 
whom he aims to plunder by the establishment of a monop- 

*. Dekker, Non-dram. Wks. 3. 367. 

Introduction Ixi 

oly as against the adventurer who furnishes the funds for 
putting the project into operation: 

. . . Wee poore Gentlemen, that want acres, 
Must for our needs, turne fooles vp and plough Ladies. 

Both Fitzdottrel and Lady Tailbush are drawn into these 
schemes so far as to part with their money. Merecraft 
himself pretends that he possesses sufficient influence at 
Court. He flatters Fitzdottrel, who is persuaded by the 
mere display of projects in a buckram bag, by demanding 
of him 'his count'nance, t'appeare in't to great men' (2. 
i. 39). Lady Tailbush is not so easily fooled, and Mere- 
craft has some difficulty in persuading her of the power of 
his friends at Court (Act 4. Sc. i). 

Merecraft's chief project, the recovery of the drowned 
lands, is also satirized by Randolph: 

I have a rare device to set Dutch windmills 
Upon Newmarket Heath, and Salisbury Plain, 
To drain the fens. 1 

and in Holland's Leaguer, Act i. Sc. 5 (cited by GifTord) : 

Our projector 

Will undertake the making of bay salt, 
For a penny a bushel, to serve all the state; 
Another dreams of building waterworkes, 
Drying of fenns and marshes, like the Dutchmen. 

In the later drama the figure of the projector appears 
several times, but it lacks the timeliness of Jonson's satire, 
and the conception must have been largely derived from 
literary sources. Jonson's influence is often apparent. In 
Brome's Court Beggar the patentee is Mendicant, a country 
gentleman who has left his rustic life and sold his property, 
in order to raise his state by court-suits. The projects which 
he presents at court are the invention of three projectors. 
Like Merecraft, they promise to make Mendicant a lord, 
and succeed only in reducing him to poverty. The char 
acter of the Court Beggar is given in these words :. 'He is 

1 Muse's Looking Glass, O. PI. 9. 180 (cited by Gifford). 

Ixii Introduction 

a Knight that hanckers about the court ambitious to make 
himself e a Lord by begging. His braine is all Projects, 
and his soule nothing but Court-suits. He has begun more 
Knavish suits at Court, then ever the Kings Taylor honestly 
finish'd, but never thriv'd by any : so that now hee's almost 
fallen from a Palace Begger to a Spittle one.' 

In the Antipodes Brome introduces 'a States-man studi 
ous for the Commonwealth, solicited by Projectors of the 
Country.' Brome's list of projects (quoted in Gifford's 
edition) is a broad caricature. Wilson, in the Restoration 
drama, produced a play called The Projectors, in which 
Jonson's influence is apparent (see Introduction, p. Ixxv). 

Among the characters, of which the seventeenth century 
writers were so fond, the projector is a favorite figure. 
John Taylor, 1 the water-poet, furnishes us with a cartoon 
entitled 'The complaint of M, Tenterhooke the Proiector 
and Sir Thomas Dodger the Patentee.' In the rimes 
beneath the picture the distinction between the projector, 
who 'had the Art to cheat the Common-weale,' .and the 
patentee, who was possessed of 'tricks and slights to pass 
the scale,' is brought out with especial distinctness. 
Samuel Butler's character 2 of the projector is of less 
importance, since it was not published until 1759. The real 
importance of Jonson's satire lies in the fact that it appeared 
in the midst of the most active discussion on the subject of 
monopolies. Drummond says that he was 'accused upon' 
the play, and that the King 'desired him to conceal it.' 3 
Whether the subject which gave offense was the one which 
we have been considering or that of witchcraft, it is, how 
ever, impossible to determine. 

3. Witchcraft 

Witchcraft in Jonson's time was not an outworn belief, 
but a living issue. It is remarkable that the persecutions 
which followed upon this terrible delusion were compara- 

1 Works, 1641, reprinted by the Spenser Society. 
! Character Writings, ed. Morley, p. 350. 
8 See p. xix. 

Introduction Ixiii 

tively infrequent during the Middle Ages, and reached 
their maximum only in the seventeenth century. 

The first English Act against witchcraft after the Nor 
man Conquest was passed in 1541 (33 Hen. VIII. c. 8). 
This Act, which was of a general nature, and directed 
against various kinds of sorceries, was followed by another 
in 1562 (5 Eliz. c. 16). At the accession of James I. in 
1603 was passed I Jac. I. c. 12, which continued law for 
more than a century. 

During this entire period charges of witchcraft were fre 
quent. In Scotland they were especially numerous, upwards 
of fifty being recorded during the years I596-7. 1 The 
trial of Anne Turner in 1615, in which charges of witch 
craft were joined with those of poisoning, especially 
attracted the attention of Jonson. In 1593 occurred the 
trial of the 'three Witches of Warboys,' in 1606 that of 
Mary Smith, in 1612 that of the earlier Lancashire Witches, 
and of the later in 1633. These are only a few of the more 
famous cases. Of no less importance in this connection is 
the attitude of the King himself. In the famous Demo- 
nology 2 he allied himself unhesitatingly with the cause of 
superstition. Witchcraft was of course not without its 
opponents, but these were for the most part obscure men 
and of little personal influence. While Bacon and Raleigh 
were inclining to a belief in witchcraft, and Sir Thomas 
Browne was offering his support to persecution, the cause 
of reason was intrusted to such champions as Reginald 
Scot, the author of the famous Discovery of Witchcraft, 
1 584, a work which fearlessly exposes the prevailing follies 
and crimes. It is on this side that Jonson places himself. 
That he should make a categorical statement as to his belief 
or disbelief in witchcraft is not to be expected. It is 
enough that he presents a picture of the pretended demoniac, 
that he makes it as sordid and hateful as possible, that he 

1 See Trials for Witchcraft 1596-7, vol. i, Miscellany of the 
Spalding Club, Aberdeen, 1841. 

2 First appeared in 1597. Workes, fol. ed., appeared 1616, the year 
of this play. 

Ixiv Introduction 

draws for us in the person of Justice Eitherside the portrait 
of the bigoted, unreasonable, and unjust judge, and that he 
openly ridicules the series of cases which he used as the 
source of his witch scenes (cf. Act. 5. Sc. 3). 

To form an adequate conception of the poet's satirical 
purpose in this play one should compare the methods used 
here with the treatment followed in Jonson's other dramas 
where the witch motive occurs. In The Masque of Queens, 
1609, and in The Sad Shepherd, Jonson employed the lore 
of witchcraft more freely, but in a quite different way. 
Here, instead of hard realism with all its hideous details, 
the more picturesque beliefs and traditions are used for 
purely imaginative and poetical purposes. 

The Masque of Queens was presented at Whitehall, and 
dedicated to Prince Henry. Naturally Jonson's attitude 
toward witchcraft would here be respectful. It is to be 
observed, however, that in the copious notes which are 
appended to the masque no contemporary trials are referred 
to. The poet relies upon the learned compilations of Bodin, 
Remigius, Cornelius Agrippa, and Paracelsus, together with 
many of the classical authors. He is clearly dealing with 
the mythology of witchcraft. Nightshade and henbane, 
sulphur, vapors, the eggshell boat, and the cobweb sail are 
the properties which he uses in this poetic drama. The 
treatment does not differ essentially from that of Middleton 
and Shakespeare. 

In The Sad Shepherd the purpose is still different. We 
have none of the wild unearthliness of the masque. 
Maudlin is a witch of a decidedly vulgar type, but there 
is no satirical intent. Jonson, for the purpose of his play, 
accepts for the moment the prevailing attitude toward 
witchcraft, and the satisfaction in Maudlin's discomfiture 
doubtless assumed an acquiescence in the popular belief. 
At the same time the poetical aspect is not wholly forgotten, 
and appears with especial prominence in the beautiful 
passage which describes the witch's forest haunt, beginning : 
'Within a gloomy dimble she doth dwell.' The Sad Shep- 

Introduction Ixv 

herd and the masque are far more akin to each other in 
their treatment of witchcraft than is either to The Devil 
is an Ass. 


The detection of personal satire in Jonson's drama is diffi 
cult, and at best unsatisfactory. Jonson himself always 
resented it as an impertinence. 1 In the present case Fleay 
suggests that the motto, Ficta, voluptatis causa, sint 
proximo, veris, is an indication that we are to look upon 
the characters as real persons. But Jonson twice took the 
pains to explain that this is precisely the opposite of his 
own interpretation of Horace's meaning. 2 The subject of 
personal satire was a favorite one with him, and in The 
Magnetic Lady he makes the sufficiently explicit state 
ment : 'A play, though it apparel and present vices in 
general, flies from all particularities in persons.' 

On the other hand we know that Jonson did occasionally 
indulge i personal satire. Carlo Buffone, 3 Antonio 
Balladino, 4 and the clerk Nathaniel 5 are instances sufficiently 
authenticated. Of these Jonson advances a plea of jus 
tification: 'Where have I been particular? where personal? 
except to a mimic, cheater, bawd or buffoon, creatures, for 
their insolencies, worthy to be taxed? yet to which of these 
so pointingly, as he might not either ingenuously have con- 
f est, or wisely dissembled his disease ?' 6 

In only one play do we know that the principal characters 
represent real people. But between Poetaster and The 
Devil is an Ass there is a vast difference of treatment. In 

1 See Dedication to The Fox, Second Prologue to The Silent 
Woman, Induction to Bartholomew Fair, Staple of News (Second 
Intermean), Magnetic Lady (Second Intermean). 

2 See the note prefixed to Staple of Neivs, Act 3, and the second 
Prologue for The Silent Woman. 

3 Ev. Man in. 

4 Case is Altered. 

"Staple of News. 

Dedication to The Fox. 

Ixvi Introduction 

Poetaster (i) the attitude is undisguisedly satirical. The 
allusions in .the prologues and notices to the reader are 
direct and unmistakable. (2) The character-drawing is 
partly caricature, partly allegorical. This method is easily 
distinguishable from the typical, which aims to satirize a 
class. (3) Jonson does not draw upon historical events, 
but personal idiosyncrasies. (4) The chief motive is in 
the spirit of Aristophanes, the great master of personal 
satire. These methods are what we should naturally expect 
in a composition of this sort. Of such internal evidence 
we find little or nothing in The Devil is an Ass. Several 
plausible identifications, however, have been proposed, and 
these we must consider separately. 

The chief characters are identified by Fleay as fol 
lows : Wittipol is Jonson. He has returned from travel, 
and had seen Mrs. Fitzdottrel before he went. Mrs. 
Fitzdottrel is the Lady Elizabeth Hatton. Fitzdottrel is 
her husband, Sir Edward Coke. 

Mrs. Fitzdottrel. The identification is based upon a 
series of correspondences between a passage in The Devil is 
an Ass (2. 6. 57-113) and a number of passages scattered 
through Jonson's works. The most important of these are 
quoted in the note to the above passage. To them has been 
added an important passage from A Challenge at Tilt, 1613. 
Fleay's deductions are these: (i) Underwoods 36 and 
Charis must be addressed to the same lady (cf. especially 
Ch., part 5). (2) Charis and Mrs. Fitzdottrel are identical. 
The song (2. 6. 94 f.) is found complete in the Celebration 
of Charis. In Wittipol's preceding speech we find the 
phrases 'milk and roses' and 'bank of kisses,' which occur 
in Charis and in U. 36, and a reference to the husband 
who is the 'just excuse' for the wife's infidelity, which 
occurs in U. 36. (3) Charis is Lady Hatton. Fleay 
believes that Charis, part i, in which the poet speaks of 
himself as writing 'fifty years,' was written c 1622-3 ; 
but that parts 2-10 were written c 1608. In reference to 
these parts he says : 'Written in reference to a mask in 

Introduction Ixvii 

which Charis represented Venus riding in a chariot drawn 
by swans and doves (Charis, part 4), at a marriage, and 
leading the Graces in a dance at Whitehall, worthy to be 
envied of the Queen (6), in which Cupid had a part (2, 3, 
5), at which Charis kissed him (6, 7), and afterwards kept 
up a close intimacy with him (8, 9, 10). The mask of 
1608, Feb. 9, exactly fulfils these conditions, and the Venus 
of that mask was probably L. Elizabeth Hatton, the most 
beautiful of the then court ladies. She had appeared in 
the mask of Beauty, 1608, Jan. 10, but in no other year 
traceable by me. From the Elegy, G. U. 36, manifestly 
written to the same lady (compare it with the lines in 5 as 
to "the bank of kisses" and "the bath of milk and roses"), 
we learn that Charis had "a husband that is the just excuse 
of all that can be done him." This was her second husband, 
Sir Edward Coke, to whom she was married in 1593.' 

Fleay's theory rests chiefly upon (i) his interpretation of 
The Celebration of Charis; (2) the identity of Charis 
and Mrs. Fitzdottrel. A study of the poem has led me to 
conclusions of a very different nature from those of Fleay. 
They may be stated as follows : 

Charis i. This was evidently written in 1622-3. Jonson 
plainly says : 'Though I now write fifty years.' Charis is 
here seemingly identified with Lady Purbeck, daughter of 
Lady Hatton. Compare the last two lines with the passage 
from The Gipsies. Fleay believes the compliments were 
transferred in the masque at Lady Hatton's request. 

Charis 4 and 7 have every mark of being insertions. 

1 i ) They are in different metres from each other and from 
the other sections, which in this respect are uniform. 

(2) They are not in harmony with the rest of the poem. 
They entirely lack the easy, familiar, half jocular style 
which characterizes the eight other parts. (3) Each is a 
somewhat ambitious effort, complete in itself, and dis 
tinctly lyrical. (4) In neither is there any mention of or 
reference to Charis. (5) It is evident, therefore, that they 
were not written for the Charis poem, but merely inter- 

Ixviii Introduction 

polated. They are, then, of all the parts the least valuable 
for the purpose of identification, nor are we justified in 
looking upon them as continuing a definite narrative with 
the rest of the poem. (6) The evident reason for intro 
ducing them is their own intrinsic lyrical merit. 

Charis 4 was apparently written in praise of some 
pageant, probably a court masque. The representation of 
Venus drawn in a chariot by swans and doves, the birds 
sacred to her, may have been common enough. That this 
is an accurate description of the masque of February 9, 
1608 is, however, a striking fact, and it is possible that the 
lady referred to is the same who represented Venus in that 
masque. But (i) we do not even know that Jonson refers 
to a masque of his own, or a masque at all. (2) We have 
no trustworthy evidence that Lady Hatton was the Venus 
of that masque. Fleay's identification is little better than a 
guess. (3) Evidence is derived from the first stanza 
alone. This does not appear in The Devil is an Ass, and 
probably was not written at the time. Otherwise there is 
no reason for its omission in that place. It seems to have 
been added for the purpose of connecting the lyric inter 
polation with the rest of the poem. 

Charis 5 seems to be a late production. (i) Jonson 
combines in this single section a large number of figures 
used in other places. (2) That it was not the origin of 
these figures seems to be intimated by the words of the poem. 
Cupid is talking. He had lately found Jonson describing 
his lady, and Jonson's words, he says, are descriptive of 
Cupid's own mother, Venus. So Homer had spoken of her 
hair, so Anacreon of her face. He continues : 

By her looks I do her know 
Which you call my shafts. 

The italicized words may refer to U. 36. 3-4. They cor 
respond, however, much more closely to Challenge, 2 Cup, 
The 'bath your verse discloses' (1. 21) may refer to DA. 
2. 6. 82-3, U. 36. 7-8 or Gipsies 15-6. 

Introduction Ixix 

. . . the bank of kisses, 
Where you say men gather blisses 

is mentioned in U. 36. 9-10. The passages in DA. and 
Gipsies* are less close. The Valley called my nest' may 
be a reference to DA. 2. 6. 74 f. Jonson had already 
spoken of the 'girdle 'bout her waist' in Challenge, 2 Cup. 
Charis 5 seems then to have been written later than U. J<5, 
Challenge, 1613, and probably Devil is an Ass, 1616. The 
evidence is strong, though not conclusive. 

Charis 6 evidently refers to a marriage at Whitehall. 
That Cupid, who is referred to in 2, 3, 5, had any part in 
the marriage of Charis 6 is nowhere even intimated. That 
Charis led the Graces in a dance is a conjecture equally 
unfounded. Jonson of course takes the obvious oppor 
tunity (11. 20, 26) of playing on the name Charis. That 
this occasion was the same as that celebrated in 4 we have 
no reason to believe. It applies equally well, for instance, 
to A Challenge at Tilt, but we are by no means justified in 
so limiting it. It may have been imaginary. 

Charis 7 was written before 1618, since Jonson quoted 
a part of it to Drummond during his visit in Scotland (cf. 
Conversations 5). It was a favorite of the poet's and this 
furnishes sufficient reason for its insertion here. It is 
worthy of note that the two sections of Charis, which we 
know by external proof to have been in existence before 
1623, are those which give internal evidence of being 

Summary. The poem was probably a late production 
and of composite nature. There is no reason for supposing 
that the greater part was not written in 1622-3. The 

1 The passage from the Gipsies especially finds a close parallel in 
the fragment of a song in Marston's Dutch Courtesan, 1605, Wks. 
2. 46: 

Purest lips, soft banks of blisses, 

Self alone deserving kisses. 

Are not these lines from Jonson's hand? This was the year of his 
collaboration with Marston in Eastward Ho. 

Ixx Introduction 

fourth and seventh parts are interpolations. The first 
stanza of the fourth part, upon which the identification 
largely rests, seems not to have been written until the poem 
was put together in 1622-3. If it was written at the same 
time as the other two stanzas, we cannot expect to find it 
forming part of a connected narrative. The events 
described in the fourth and sixth parts are not necessarily 
the same. There is practically no evidence that Lady 
Hatton was the Venus of 1608, or that Charis is addressed 
to any particular lady. 

The other link in Fleay's chain of evidence is of still 
weaker substance. The mere repetition of compliments 
does not necessarily prove the recipient to be the same per 
son. In fact we find in these very pieces the same phrases 
applied indiscriminately to Lady Purbeck-, Lady Frances 
Howard, Mrs. Fitzdottrel, perhaps to Lady Hatton, and 
even to the Earl of Somerset. Of what value, then, can 
such evidence be? 

Fleay's whole theory rests on this poem, and biographical 
evidence is unnecessary. It is sufficient to notice that Lady 
Hatton was a proud woman, that marriage with so eminent 
a man as Sir Edward Coke was considered a great con 
descension (Chamberlain's Letters, Camden Soc., p. 29), 
and that an amour with Jonson is extremely improbable. 

Fitzdottrel. Fleay's identification of Fitzdottrel with 
Coke rests chiefly on the fact that Coke was Lady Hatton's 
husband. The following considerations are added. Fitz 
dottrel is a 'squire of Norfolk.' Sir E. Coke was a native 
of Norfolk, and had held office in Norwich. Fitzdottrel's 
role as sham demoniac is a covert allusion to Coke's adop 
tion of the popular witch doctrines in the Overbury trial. 
His jealousy of his wife was shown in the same trial, where 
he refused to read the document of 'what ladies loved what 
lords,' because, as was popularly supposed, his own wife's 
name headed the list. Jonson is taking advantage of Coke's 
disgrace in November, 1616. He had flattered him in 
1613 (17. 64). 

Introduction Ixxi 

Our reasons for rejecting this theory are as follows: 
(i) The natural inference is that Jonson would not delib 
erately attack the man whom he had highly praised three 
years before. I do not understand Fleay's assertion that 
Jonson was always ready to attack the fallen. (2) The 
compliment paid to Coke in 1613 (U. 64) was not the flat 
tery of an hour of triumph. The appointment to the king's 
bench was displeasing to Coke, and made at the suggestion 
of Bacon with the object of removing him to a place where 
he would come less often into contact with the king. (3) 
Fitzdottrel is a light-headed man of fashion, who spends his 
time in frequenting theatres and public places, and in con 
juring evil spirits. Coke was sixty- four years old, the 
greatest lawyer of his time, and a man of the highest gifts 
and attainments. (4) The attempted parallel between Fitz 
dottrel, the pretended demoniac, and Coke, as judge in the 
Overbury trial, is patently absurd. (5) If Lady Hatton 
had not been selected for identification with Mrs. Fitzdottrel, 
Coke would never have been dreamed of as a possible 

Wittipol. He is a young man just returned from travel, 
which apparently has been of considerable duration. He 
saw Mrs. Fitzdottrel once before he went, and upon return 
ing immediately seeks her out. How does this correspond 
to Jonson's life? The Hue and Cry was played February 
9, 1608. According to Fleay's interpretation, this was 
followed by an intimacy with Lady Hatton. Five years 
later, in 1613, Drummond tells us that Jonson went to 
France with the son of Sir Walter Raleigh. He returned 
the same year in time to compose A Challenge at Tilt, 
December 27. Three years later he wrote The Devil is an 
Ass at the age of forty-three. 

Wittipol intimates that he is Mrs. Fitzdottrel's equal in 
years, in fashion (i. 6. 124-5), and in blood (i. 6. 168). 
For Jonson to say thfs to Lady Hatton would have been 

Justice Eitherside. Only the desire to prove a theory at 
all costs could have prevented Fleay from seeing that 

Ixxii Introduction 

Coke's counterpart is not Fitzdottrel, but Justice Eitherside. 
In obstinacy, bigotry, and vanity this character represents 
the class of judges with which Coke identified himself in 
the Overbury trial. Nor are these merely class-traits. 
They are distinctly the faults which marred Coke's career 
from the beginning. It is certain that Coke is partially 
responsible for this portraiture. Overbury was a personal 
friend of the poet, and the trial, begun in the previous year, 
had extended into 1616. Jonson must have followed it 
eagerly. On the other hand, it is improbable that the 
picture was aimed exclusively at Coke. He merely fur 
nished traits for a typical and not uncommon character. 
As we have seen, it is in line with Jonson's usual practise 
to confine personal satire to the lesser characters. 

Merecraft. Fleay's identification with Sir Giles Mom- 
pesson has very little to commend it. Mompesson was 
connected by marriage with James I.'s powerful favorite, 
George Villiers, later Duke of Buckingham. In 1616 he 
suggested to Villiers the creation of a special commission 
for the purpose of granting licenses to keepers of inns and 
ale-houses. The suggestion was adopted by Villiers ; Mom 
pesson was appointed to the Commission in October, 1616, 
and knighted on November 18 of that year. The patent 
was not sealed until March, 1617. His high-handed 
conduct soon became unpopular, but he continued in favor 
with Villiers and James, and his disgrace did not come until 

It will readily be seen that Mompesson's position and 
career conform in no particular to those of Merecraft 
in the present play. Mompesson was a knight, a friend 
of the king's favorite, and in favor with the king. Mere- 
craft is a mere needy adventurer without influence at court, 
and the associate of ruffians, who frequent the 'Straits' 
and the 'Bermudas.' Mompesson was himself the recipient 
of a patent (see section III. 2). Merecraft is merely the 
projector who devises clever projects for more powerful 
patrons. Mompesson's project bears no resemblance to 

Introduction Ixxiii 

those suggested by Merecraft, and he could hardly have 
attracted any popular dislike at the time when The Devil 
is an Ass was presented, since, as we have seen, his patent 
was not even sealed. until the following year. Finally, 
Jonson would hardly have attacked a man who stood so high 
at court as did Mompesson in 1616. 

It is evident that Jonson had particularly in mind those 
projectors whose object it was to drain the fens of Lincoln 
shire. The attempts, as we have seen, were numerous, and 
it is highly improbable that Jonson wished to satirize any 
one of them more severely than another. In a single pas 
sage, however, it seems possible that Sir John Popham (see 
page Ix) is referred to. In Act 4. Sc. I Merecraft speaks 
of a Sir John Monie-man as a projector who was able to 
'jump a business quickly' because 'he had great friends.' 
That Popham is referred to seems not unlikely from the 
fact that he was the most important personage who had 
embarked upon an enterprise of this sort, that his scheme 
was one of the earliest, that he was not a strict contempo 
rary (d. 1607), and that his scheme had been very unpopular. 
This is proved by an anonymous letter to the king, in which 
complaint is made that 'the "covetous bloody Popham" 
will ruin many poor men by his offer to drain the fens' 
(Cal. State Papers, Mar. 14?, 1606). 

Plutarchus Guilthead. Fleay's identification with Edmund 
Howes I am prepared to accept, although biographical data 
are very meagre. Fleay says: 'Plutarchus Gilthead, who 
is writing the lives of the great men in the city ; the captain 
who writes of the Artillery Garden "to train the youth," 
etc. [3. 2. 45], is, I think, Edmond Howes, whose continu 
ation of Stow's Chronicle was published in 1615.' 

Howes' undertaking was a matter of considerable ridicule 
to his acquaintances. In his 1631 edition he speaks of the 
heavy blows and great discouragements he received from 
his friends. He was in the habit of signing himself 'Gentle 
man' and this seems to be satirized in 3. I, where Guilt- 
head says repeatedly: 'This is to make you a Gentleman' 
(see N. & Q. ist Ser. 6. 199.). 

Ixxiv Introduction 

The Noble House. Two proposed identifications of the 
'noble house/ which pretends to a duke's title, mentioned 
at 2. 4. 15-6, have been made. The expenditure of much 
energy in the attempt to fix so veiled an allusion is hardly 
worth while. Jonson of course depended upon contem 
porary rumor, for which we have no data. 

Cunningham's suggestion that Buckingham is referred to 
is not convincing. Buckingham's father was Sir George 
Villiers of Brooksby in Leicestershire. He was not him 
self raised to the nobility until August 27, 1616, when he 
was created Viscount Villiers and Baron Waddon. It was 
not until January 5, 1617 (not 1616, as Cunningham says), 
that he became Earl of Buckingham, and it is unlikely that 
before this time any allusion to Villiers' aspiration to a 
dukedom would have been intelligible to Jonson's audience. 

Fleay's theory that the 'noble house' was that of Stuart 
may be accepted provisionally. Lodowick was made Earl 
of Richmond in 1613, and Duke in 1623. He was accept 
able to king and people, and in this very year was made 
steward of the household. 



A few instances of the subsequent rehandling of certain 
motives in this play are too striking to be completely over 
looked. John Wilson, i627~c 1696, a faithful student and 
close imitator of Jonson, produced in 1690 a drama called 
Belphegor, or The Marriage of the Devil, a Tragi-comedy. 
While it is founded on the English translation of Machia- 
velli's novella, which appeared in 1674, and closely adheres 
to the lines of the original, it shows clear evidence of 
Jonson's influence. The subject has been fully investigated 
by Hollstein (cf. Verhdltnis, pp. 22-24, 28-30, 35, 43, 50). 

The Cheats, 1662, apparently refers to The Devil is an 
Ass in the Prologue. The characters of Bilboe and Titere 
Tu belong to the same class of low bullies as Merecraft and 

Introduction Ixxv 


Everill, but the evident prototypes of these characters are 
Subtle and Face in The Alchemist. 

A third play of Wilson's, The Projectors, 1664, shows 
unmistakable influence of The Devil is an Ass. The chief 
object of satire is of course the same, and the character of 
Sir Gudgeon Credulous is modeled after that of Fitzdottrel. 
The scenes in which the projects are explained, 2. i and 3. 
i, are similar to the corresponding passages in Jonson. 
The Aulularia of Plautus is a partial source, so that the play 
in some features resembles The Case is Altered. In 2. i 
Wilson imitates the passage in the Aulularia, which closes 
Act 2. Sc. i of The Devil is an Ass (see note 2. i. 168). 

Brome, Jonson's old servant and friend, also handled the 
subject of monopolies (see page Ixi). Jonson's influence 
is especially marked in The Court Beggar. The project of 
perukes (Wks. i. 192) should be compared with Mere- 
craft's project of toothpicks. 

Mrs. Susanna Centlivre's Busie Body uses the motives 
borrowed from Boccaccio (see pp. xlv ff.). The scenes in 
which these appear must have been suggested by Jonson's 
play (Genest 2. 419), though the author seems to have 
been acquainted with the Decameron also. In Act. i. Sc. i 
Sir George Airy makes a bargain with Sir Francis Gripe 
similar to Wittipol's bargain with Fitzdottrel. In exchange 
for the sum of a hundred guineas he is admitted into the 
house for the purpose of moving his suit to Miranda, 'for 
the space of ten minutes, without lett or molestation,' pro 
vided Sir Francis remain in the same room, though out of 
ear shot (2d ed., p. 8). In Act 2. Sc. i the bargain is car 
ried out in much the same way as in Boccaccio and in 
Jonson, Miranda remaining dumb and Sir George answering 
for her. 

In Act 3. Sc. 4 (2d ed., p. 38) Miranda in the presence 
of her guardian sends a message by Marplot not to saunter 
at the garden gate about eight o'clock as he has been 
accustomed to do, thus making an assignation with him 
(compare DA. 2. 2. 52). 

Ixxvi Introduction 

Other motives which seem to show some influence of The 
Devil is an Ass are Miranda's trick to have the estate settled 
upon her, Charles' disguise as a Spaniard, and Traffick's 
jealous care of Isabinda. The character of Marplot as 
comic butt resembles that of Pug. 

The song in The Devil is an Ass 2. 6. 94 (see note) was 
imitated by Sir John Suckling. 


GIFFORD: There is much good writing in this comedy. 
All the speeches of Satan are replete with the most biting 
satire, delivered with an appropriate degree of spirit. Fitz- 
dottrel is one of those characters which Jonson delighted to 
draw, and in which he stood unrivalled, a gull, i. e., a con 
fident coxcomb, selfish, cunning, and conceited. Mrs. 
Fitzdottrel possesses somewhat more interest .than the gen 
erality of our author's females, and is indeed a well 
sustained character. In action the principal amusement of 
the scene (exclusive of the admirable burlesque of witchery 
in the conclusion) was probably derived from the mortifi 
cation of poor Pug, whose stupid stare of amazement at 
finding himself made an ass of on every possible occasion 
must, if portrayed as some then on the stage were well able 
to portray it, have been exquisitely comic. 

This play is strictly moral in its conception and conduct. 
Knavery and folly are shamed and corrected, virtue is 
strengthened and rewarded, and the ends of dramatic jus 
tice are sufficiently answered by the simple exposure of 
those whose errors are merely subservient to the minor 
interests of the piece. 

HERFORD (Studies in the Literary Relations of England 
and Germany, pp. 318-20) : Jonson had in fact so far the 
Aristophanic quality of genius, that he was at once a most 
elaborate and minute student of the actual world, and a poet 

Introduction Ixxvii 

of the airiest and boldest fancy, and that he loved to bring 
the two roles into the closest possible combination. No one 
so capable of holding up the mirror to contemporary society 
without distorting the slenderest thread of its complex tissue 
of usages ; no one, on the other hand, who so keenly 
delighted in startling away the illusion or carefully under 
mining it by some palpably fantastic invention. His most 
elaborate reproductions of the everyday world are hardly 
ever without an infusion of equally elaborate caprice, a 
leaven of recondite and fantastic legend and grotesque 
myth, redolent of old libraries and antique scholarship, 
furtively planted, as it were, in the heart of that everyday 
world of London life, and so subtly blending with it that 
the whole motley throng of merchants and apprentices, 
gulls and gallants, discover nothing unusual in it, and 
engage with the most perfectly matter of fact air in the 
business of working it out. The purging of Crispinus in 
the Poetaster, the Aristophanic motive of the Magnetic 
Lady, even the farcical horror of noise which is the main 
spring of the Epiccene, are only less elaborate and sustained 
examples of this fantastic realism than the adventure of a 
Stupid Devil in the play before us. Nothing more anom 
alous in the London of Jonson's day could be conceived ; 
yet it is so managed that it loses all its strangeness. So 
perfectly is the supernatural element welded with the 
human, that it almost ceases to appear supernatural. Pug, 
the hero of the adventure, is a pretty, petulant boy, more 
human by many degrees than the half fairy Puck of 
Shakespeare, which doubtless helped to suggest him, and 
the arch-fiend Satan is a bluff old politician, anxious to 
ward off the perils of London from his young simpleton of 
a son, who is equally eager to plunge into them. The old 
savage horror fades away before Jonson's humanising 
touch, the infernal world loses all its privilege of peculiar 
terror and strength, and sinks to the footing of a mere 
rival state, whose merchandise can be kept out of the mar 
ket and its citizens put in the Counter or carted to Tyburn. 

Ixxviii Introduction 

A. W. WARD (Eng. Dram. Lit., pp. 372-3) : The oddly- 
named comedy of The Devil is an Ass, acted in 1616, seems 
already to exhibit a certain degree of decay in the dramatic 
powers which had so signally called forth its predecessor. 
Yet this comedy possesses a considerable literary interest, 
as adapting both to Jonson's dramatic method, and to the 
general moral atmosphere of his age, a theme connecting 
itself with some of the most notable creations of the earlier 
Elizabethan drama. . . . The idea of the play is as 
healthy as its plot is ingenious ; but apart from the circum 
stance that the latter is rather slow in preparation, and by 
n,o means, I think, gains in perspicuousness as it proceeds, 
the design itself suffers from one radical mistake. Pug's 
intelligence is so much below par that he suffers as largely 
on account of his clumsiness as on account of his vicious- 
ness, while remaining absolutely without influence upon the 
course of the action. The comedy is at the same time full 
of humor, particularly in the entire character of Fitzdottrel. 

SWINBURNE (Study of Ben Jonson, pp. 65-7) : If The 
Devil is an Ass cannot be ranked among the crowning 
masterpieces of its author, it is not because the play shows 
any sign of decadence in literary power or in humorous 
invention. The writing is admirable, the wealth of comic 
matter is only too copious, the characters are as firm in 
outline or as rich in color as any but the most triumphant 
examples of his satirical or sympathetic skill in finished 
delineation and demarcation of humors. On the other 
hand, it is of all Ben Jonson's comedies since the date of 
Cynthia's Revels the most obsolete in subject of satire, the 
most temporary in its allusions and applications : the want 
of fusion or even connection (except of the most mechanical 
or casual kind) between the various parts of its structure 
and the alternate topics of its ridicule makes the action more 
difficult to follow than that of many more complicated plots : 
and, finally, the admixture of serious sentiment and noble 
emotion is not so skilfully managed as to evade the impu 
tation of incongruity. [The dialogue between Lady Tail- 

Introduction Ixxix 

bush and Lady Eitherside in Act 4. Sc. I has some touches 
'worthy of Moliere himself.' In Act 4. Sc. 3 Mrs. Fitz- 
dottrel's speech possesses a 'a noble and natural eloquence/ 
but the character of her husband is 'almost too loathsome 
to be ridiculous/ and unfit 'for the leading part in a comedy 
of ethics as well as of morals.'] The prodigality of elab 
oration lavished on such a multitude of subordinate char 
acters, at the expense of all continuous interest and to the 
sacrifice of all dramatic harmony, may tempt the reader to 
apostrophize the poet in his own words : 

You are so covetous still to embrace 
More than you can, that you lose all. 

Yet a word of parting praise must be given to Satan : a 
small part as far as extent goes, but a splendid example of 
high comic imagination after the order of Aristophanes, 
admirably relieved by the low comedy of the asinine Pug 
and the voluble doggrel by the antiquated Vice. 



The text here adopted is that of the original edition of 1631. No 
changes of reading have been made ; spelling, punctuation, capitaliza 
tion, and italics are reproduced. The original pagination is inserted 
in brackets; the book-holder's marginal notes are inserted where 
1716 and Whalley placed them. In a few instances modern type has 
been substituted for archaic characters. The spacing of the con 
tracted words has been normalized. 
1641 Pamphlet folio of 1641. 
1692 = The Third Folio, 1692. 
1716= Edition of 1716 (17). 
W=;Whalley's edition, 1756. 
G = Gifford's edition, 1816. 

SD. = Stage directions at the beginning of a scene. 
SN. = Side note, or book-holder's note, 
om. omitted, 
ret. = retained. 

f . = and all later editions. 

G = a regular change. After a single citation only exceptions 
are noted. See Introduction, page xvi. 

Mere changes of spelling have not been noted in the variants. 
All changes of form and all suggestive changes of punctuation have 
been recorded. 




YE ARE, 1616. 



The Author BEN: IONSON. 


Fitfla voluptatis Caitfd, Jint proximo. 




Printed by /. B. for ROBERT ALLOT, and are 

to be fold at the figne of the Beare, in Pauls 

Church-yard. 1631. 








Miftreffe FRANCES 
















The great diuell. 
The leffe diuell. 
The Vice. 

A Squire of Norfolk. 
His wife. 
The ProieElor. 
His champion. 
A young Gallant. 
His friend. 
A Broaker. 
The Proieftors man. 
A Gold-fmith. 
His fonne. 

SIDE. A Lawyer, and luftice. 
Plis wife. 

The Lady Proieclreffe. 
Her woman. 
Her Gentlemanvfher. 
A Smith, the conflable. 
Keeper of Newgate. 




The Scene, LONDON. 

Dramatis Personse 1716, f. G places the women's names after those 
of the men. i, 2 Devil 1692, f. 4 Fabian Fitzdottrel G 

5 Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel G His wife] om. G 9 Eustace 

Manly G 10 Engine 1716, f. 12 Thomas Gilthead G 

15 His wife] om. G 18 Gentleman-usher to lady Tailbush G 

21 Serjeants, officers, servants, underkeepers, &c. G 22 The] om. 

1716, W 

The Prologue. 

THe DIVELL is an Affe. That is, to day, 
The name of what you are met for, a new Play. 
Yet, Grandee's, would you were not come to grace 
Our matter, with allowing vs no place. 
Though you prefume SATAN a fubtill thing, 5 

And may haue heard hee's worne in a thumbe-ring; 
Doe not on thefe prefumptions, force vs a5l, 
In compaffe of a cheefe-trencher. This tracl 
Will ne'er admit our vice, becaufe of yours. 
Anone, who, worfe then you, the fault endures 10 

That your felues make? when you will thru ft and fpurne, 
And knocke vs o' the elbowes, and bid, turne; 
As if, when wee had fpoke, wee muft be gone, 
Or, till wee fpeake, muft all runne in, to one, 
Like the young adders, at the old ones mouth ? 15 

Would wee could ftand due North ; or had no South, 
// that offend: or were Mufcouy glaffe, 
That you might looke our Scenes through as they paffe. 
We know not how to affecl you. If you'll come 
To fee new Playes, pray you affoord vs roome, 20 

And jliew this, but the fame face you haue done 
Your deare delight, the Diuell of Edmunton. 
Or, if, for want of roome it muft mif -carry, 
'Twill be but luftice, that your cenfure tarry, 
Till you giue fome. And when fixe times you ha' feen't, 25 
// this Play doe not like, the Diuell is in't. 

The Prologue.] follows the title-page 1716, W 5 subtle 1692 f. 

10 than 1692, f. passim in this sense. Anon 1692, f. 12 o'] on 

G 14 till] 'till 1716 25 ha'] have G 






HOh, hoh, hoh, hoh, hoh, hoh, hoh, hoh, &c. 
To earth? and, why to earth, thou fooolifh Spirit? 
What wold'ft thou do on earth ? PVG. For that, 
great Chief e! 

As time ihal work. I do but ask my mon'th. 
Which euery petty pui'nee Diuell has; 5 

Within that terme, the Court of Hell will heare 
Some thing, may gaine a longer grant, perhaps. 

SAT. For what? the laming a poore Cow, or two? 
Entring a Sow, to make her caft her farrow? 
Or croffmg of a Mercat-womans Mare, 10 

Twixt this, and Totnam? thefe were wont to be 
Your maine atchieuements, Pug, You haue fome plot, now, 
Vpon a tonning of Ale, to flale the yeft, 
Or keepe the churne fo, that the buttter come not; 
Spight o' the houfewiues cord, or her hot fpit? 15 

Or fome good Ribibe, about Kenti/Ji Towne, 
Or Hogfden, you would hang now, for a witch, 

SD. DIVELL] Devil 1692 Satan 1716, W DIVELL . . .] 

Enter SATAN and PUG. G i &c. om. G 9 entering G 

10 Market 1641, 1692, 1716 market W, G n Tottenham G 
15 Housewive's 1716 housewife's W, f. 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse j 

Becaufe fliee will not let you play round Robbin : 

And you'll goe fowre the Citizens Creame 'gainft Sunday? 

That me may be accus'd for't, and condemn'd, 20 

By a Middle] ex lury, to the fatisfafclion 

Of their offended friends, the Londiners wiues 

Whofe teeth were fet on edge with it? Foolifh feind, 

Stay i' your place, know your owne ftrengths, and put not 

Beyond the fpheare of your acliuity. 25 

You are too dull a Diuell to be trufted [96] 

Forth in thofe parts, Pug, vpon any affayre 

That may concerne our name, on earth. It is not 

Euery ones worke. The flate of Hell muft care 

Whom it imployes, in point of reputation, 30 

Heere about London. You would make, I thinke 

An Agent, to be fent, for Lancafaire, 

Proper inough ; or fome parts of Northumberland, 

So yo' had good inftruclions, Pug. PVG. O Chief e ! 

You doe not know, deare Chief e, what there is in mee. 35 

Proue me but for a fortnight, for a weeke, 

And lend mee but a Vice, to carry with mee, 

To practice there- with any play- fellow, 

And, you will fee, there will come more vpon't, 

Then you'll imagine, pretious Chief e. SAT. What Vice ? 40 

What kind wouldft th' haue it of ? PVG. Why, any Fraud ; 

Or Couetoufneffe; or Lady Vanity, 

Or old Iniquity : I'll call him hither. 

INI. What is he, calls vpon me, and would feeme to 

lack a Vice ? 

Ere his words be halfe fpoken, I am with him in a trice ; 45 
Here, there, and euery where, as the Cat is with the mice : 
True vetus Iniquitas. Lack'ft thou Cards, friend, or Dice? 
I will teach thee cheate, Child, to cog, lye, and fwagger, 

23 with't W, G 24 i'] in G strength 1692, f. 

30 employs W, G 33 enough 1692, f. 34 you 'ad 1716 

you had W, G 38 there with 1692, f. 41 th'] thou G 

Why any, Fraud, 1716 Why any : Fraud, W, G 43 I'll . . .] Sat. 

I'll . . . W, G Enter INIQUITY. G 48 cheate] to cheat W 

[to] cheat G 

8 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

And euer and anon, to be drawing forth thy dagger : 
To fweare by Gogs-no wnes, like a lufty luuentus, 50 

In a cloake to thy heele, and a hat like a pent-houfe. 
Thy breeches of three fingers, and thy doublet all belly, 
With a Wench that fhall feede thee, with cock-ftones and 


PVG. Is it not excellent, Chief e ? how nimble he is ! 
INI. Child of hell, this is nothing! I will fetch thee a 

leape 55 

From the top of Paw/^-fteeple, to the Standard in Cheepe : 
And lead thee a daunce, through the flreets without faile, 
Like a needle of Spaine, with a thred at my tayle. 
We will furuay the Suburbs, and make forth our fallyes, 
Downe Petticoate-lane, and vp the Smock-allies, 60 

To Shoreditch, Whitechappell, and fo to Saint Kathernes. 
To drinke with the Dutch there, and take forth their pat- 

ternes : 

From thence, wee will put in at Cuflome-houfe key there, 
And fee, how the Fa5lors, and Prentizes play there, 
Falfe with their Mailers ; and gueld many a full packe, 65 
To fpend it in pies, at the Dagger, and the Wool-facke. 
PVG. Braue, braue, Iniquity ! will not this doe, Chief e ? 
INI. Nay, boy, I wil bring thee to the Bawds, and the 


At Belins-gate, feafting with claret-wine, and oyfters, 
From thence moot the Bridge, childe, to the Cranes i' the 

V in try, 70 

And fee, there the gimblets, how they make their entry ! 
Or, if thou hadfl rather, to the Strand downe to fall, 
'Gainft the Lawyers come dabled from Weftminfter-hall[^} 
And marke how they cling, with their clyents together, 
Like luie to Oake ; fo Veluet to Leather : 75 

Ha, boy, I would mew thee. PVG. Rare, rare! Div. 

Peace, dotard, 

57 Dance 1716 dance 1641, W, G 69 Billings-gate 1692 

Billingsgate 1716 Billingsgate W Billinsgate G 76 thee.] 

thee G Div.] Dev. 1692 Sat. 1716, f. 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 9 

And thou more ignorant thing, that fo admir'ft. 

Art thou the fpirit thou feem'ft ? fo poore ? to choofe 

This, for a Vice, t'aduance the caufe of Hell, 

Now? as Vice flands this prefent yeere? Remember, 80 

What number it is. Six hundred and fixteene. 

Had it but beene fiue hundred, though fome fixty 

Aboue ; that's fifty yeeres agone, and fix, 

(When euery great man had his Vice ftand by him, 

In his long coat, making his wooden dagger) 85 

I could confent, that, then this your graue choice 

Might haue done that with his Lord Chief e, the which 

Mofl of his chamber can doe now. But Pug, 

As the times are, who is it, will receiue you? 

What company will you goe to? or whom mix with? 90 

Where canfl thou carry him? except to Tauernes? 

To mount vp ona joynt-floole, with a lewes-trumpe, 

To put downe Cokeley, and that muft be to Citizens? 

He ne're will be admitted, there, where Vennor comes. 

Hee may perchance, in taile of a Sheriffes dinner, 95 

Skip with a rime o' the Table, from New-nothing, 

And take his Almaine-leape into a cuftard, 

Shall make my Lad Maioreffe, and her fitters, 

Laugh all their hoods ouer their shoulders. But, 

This is not that will doe, they are other things 100 

That are receiu'd now vpon earth, for Vices ; 

Stranger, and newer : and chang'd euery houre. 

They ride 'hem like their horfes off their legges, 

And here they come to Hell, whole legions of 'hem, 

Euery weeke tyr'd. Wee, flill ftriue to breed, 105 

And reare 'hem vp new ones ; but they doe not ftand, 

When they come there : they turne 'hem on our hands. 

And it is fear'd they haue a ftud o' their owne 

Will put downe ours. Both our breed, and trade 

79 t'] to G 84, 5()om. G 98 Lad}' 1692, 1716 lady 

W, G 101 Vices 1641, 1692, 1716, G vices W 103 'hem] 

'em 1692, 1716, W passim them G 106 'hem om. G 

stand,] stand ; G 107 there :] there W there, G 

io The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

Will fuddenly decay, if we preuent not. no 

VnleiTe it be a Vice of quality, 

Or fafhion, now, they take none from vs. Car-men 

Are got into the yellow flarch, and Chimney-fweepers 

To their tabacco, and ftrong-waters, Hum, 

Meath, and Obarni. We muft therefore ayme 115 

At extraordinary fubtill ones, now, 

When we doe fend to keepe vs vp in credit. 

Not old Iniquities. Get you e'ne backe, Sir, 

To making of your rope of fand againe. 

You are not for the manners, nor the times : 120 [98] 

They haue their Vices, there, moft like to Vertues', 

You cannnot know 'hem, apart, by any difference : 

They weare the fame clothes, eate the fame meate, 

Sleepe i' the felfe-fame beds, rid i' thofe coaches. 

Or very like, foure horfes in a coach, 125 

As the befl men and women. Tiffue gownes, 

Garters and rofes, fourefcore pound a paire, 

Embroydred llockings, cut-worke fmocks, and fhirts, 

More certaine marks of lechery, now, and pride, 

Then ere they were of true nobility! 130 

But Pug, fince you doe burne with fuch defire 

To doe the Common- wealth of Hell fome feruice ; 

I am content, afluming of a body, 

You goe to earth, and vifit men, a day. 

But you muft take a body ready made, Pug, 135 

I can create you none : nor fhall you forme 

Your felfe an aery one, but become fubie6l 

To all impreffion of the flefli, you take, 

So farre as humane frailty. So, this morning, 

There is a handfome Cutpurfe hang'd at Tiborne, 140 

Whofe fpirit departed, you may enter his body : 

For clothes imploy your credit, with the Hangman, 

116 subtle 1692, f. 120 manner G 128 Embrothered 

1641 Embroider'd 1716, f. stockins 1641 130 [Exit Iniq. G 

137 airy 1692, f. passim 139 human W, G 140 Tyburn 
1692, f. passim 142 employ W, G 

Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 1 1 

Or let our tribe of Brokers furniili you. 

And, looke, how farre your fubtilty can worke 

Thorow thofe organs, with that body, fpye 145 

Amongfb mankind, (you cannot there want vices, 

And therefore the leffe need to carry 'hem wi' you) 

But as you make your foone at nights relation, 

And we fhall find, it merits from the State, 

Your fhall haue both truft from vs, and imployment. 150 

PVG. Moft gracious Chief e\ Div. Onely, thus more I 

bind you, 

To ferue the firft man that you meete ; and him 
Fie mew you, now : Obferue him. Yon' is hee, 

He jhewes Fitz-dottrel to him, camming forth. 
You fhall fee, firft, after your clothing. Follow him: 
But once engag'd, there you mufl flay and fixe ; 
Not fhift, vntill the midnights cocke doe crow. 

PVG. Any conditions to be gone. Div. Away, then. 157 



I they doe, now, name Bretnor, as before, [97] 

9 They talk'd of Grefliam, and of Do6lor Fore-man, 
Francklin, and Fiske, and Sauory (he was in too) 
But there's not one of thefe, that euer could 
Yet mew a man the Diuell, in true fort. 5 

They haue their chriftalls, I doe know, and rings, 
And virgin parchment, and their dead-mens fculls 

146, 7 () ret. G 147 wi'] with G 150 employment W, 

G 151, 157 Div.] Dev. 1692 Sat. 1716, f. 153 now] new 

1716 153 SN.] Shews him Fitzdottrel coming out of his house at a 

distance. G 157 Exeunt severally. G 

SD. ACT. I. om. 1716, f. (as regularly, after Sc. I. of each act.) 
ACT. . . ] SCENE II. The street before Fitzdottrefs House. Enter 

1 2 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

Their rauens wings, their lights, and pentacles, 

With charaflers ; I ha' feene all thefe. But 

Would I might fee the Diuell. I would giue 10 

A hundred o' thefe pi&lures, to fee him 

Once out of piclure. May I proue a cuckold, 

(And that's the one maine mortall thing I feare) 

If I beginne not, now, to thinke, the Painters 

Haue onely made him. 'Slight, he would be feene, 15 

One time or other elfe. He would not let 

An ancient gentleman, of a good houfe, 

As moft are now in England, the Fits-dottrel's 

Runne wilde, and call vpon him thus in vaine, 

As I ha' done this twelue mone'th. If he be not, 20 

At all, why, are there Coniurers? If they be not, 

Why, are there lawes againfl 'hem? The beft artifts 

Of Cambridge, Oxford, Middlesex, and London, 

Effex, and Kent, I haue had in pay to raife him, 

Thefe fifty weekes, and yet h'appeares not. 'Sdeath, 25 

I mail fufped, they, can make circles onely 

Shortly, and know but his hard names. They doe fay, 

H'will meet a man (of himfelfe) that has a mind to him. 

If hee would fo, I haue a minde and a halfe for him : 

He mould not be long abfent. Pray thee, come 30 

I long for thee. An' I were with child by him, 

And my wife too ; I could not more. Come, yet, 

He expreffes a longing to fee the Diuell. 
Good Beelezebub. Were hee a kinde diuell, 
And had humanity in him, hee would come, but 
To faue ones longing. I mould vfe him well, 35 

I fweare, and with refpecl (would he would try mee) 
Not, as the Conjurers doe, when they ha' rais'd him. 
Get him in bonds, and fend him pofl, on errands. 
A thoufand miles, it is prepoflerous, that ; [ 100] 

12 picture, 1641 17 a] as W [as] G good] good a G 

21, 22 comma om. after ' why' and ' Why' 1692 f. 25 h'] he G 

26 circle 1641 30 Prithee G 31 An'] an G 32 SN. 

expresseth 1692, 1716, W SN. om. G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 13 

And I beleeue, is the true caufe he comes not. 40 

And hee has reafon. Who would be engag'd, 
That might Hue freely, as he may doe? I fweare, 
They are wrong all. The burn't child dreads the fire. 
They doe not know to entertaine the Diuell. 
I would fo welcome him, obferue his diet, 45 

Get him his chamber hung with arras, two of 'hem, 
I' my own houfe ; lend him my wiues wrought pillowes : 
And as I am an honeft man, I thinke, 
If he had a minde to her, too ; I should grant him, 
To make our friend-lhip perfecl. So I would not 50 

To euery man. If hee but heare me, now? 
And mould come to mee in a braue young fhape, 
-And take me at my word? ha! Who is this? 



SIR, your good pardon, that I thus prefume 
Vpon your priuacy. I am borne a Gentleman, 
A younger brother ; but, in fome difgrace, 
Now, with my friends : and want fome little meanes, 
To keepe me vpright, while things be reconcil'd. 5 

Pleafe you, to let my feruice be of vfe to you, Sir. 

FIT. Seruice? 'fore hell, my heart was at my mouth, 
Till I had view'd his mooes well : for, thofe rofes 
Were bigge inough to hide a clouen foote. 

Hee lookes and furuay's his feet: ouer and ouer. 
No, friend, my number's full. I haue one feruant, 10 

Who is my all, indeed ; and, from the broome 
Vnto the brufh : for, iuft fo farre, I trull him. 
He is my Ward-robe man, my Cater, Cooke, 

46 'hem] 'em G 47 Wife's 1716 wife's W, G passim 

53 word ? Enter PUG handsomely shaped and apparelled. G 

SD. om. G 9 SN. om. G Aside. G 13 m' acater W 

14 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

Butler, and Steward ; lookes vnto my horfe : 

And helpes to watch my wife. H'has all the places, 15 

That I can thinke on, from the garret downward, 

E'en to the manger, and the curry-combe. 

PVG. Sir, I fhall put your worfhip to no charge, 
More then my meate, and that but very little, 
I'le ferue you for your loue. FIT. Ha ? without wages ? 20 
Fie harken o' that eare, were I at leafure. 
But now, I'm bufie. 'Pr'y the, friend forbeare mee, 
And' thou hadft beene a Diuell, I fhould (ay [ J oi] 

Somewhat more to thee. Thou doll hinder, now, 
My meditations. PVG. Sir, I am a Diuell. 25 

FIT. How ! PVG. A true Diuell, S r , FIT. Nay, now, 

you ly : 

Vnder your fauour, friend, for, I'll not quarrell. 
I look'd o' your feet, afore, you cannot coozen mee, 
Your fhoo's not clouen, Sir, you are whole hoof'd. 

He vie-wes his feete againe. 

PVG. Sir, that's a popular error, deceiues many : 30 

But I am that, I tell you. FIT. What's your name? 

PVG. My name is Diuell, S r . FIT. Sai'fl thou true. 
PVG. in-deed, S r . 

FIT. 'Slid ! there's fome omen i' this ! what countryman ? 

PVG. Of Derby- fliire, S r . about the Peake. FIT. That 

Belong'd to your Anceftors ? PVG. Yes, Diuells arfe, S r . 35 

FIT. I'll entertaine him for the name fake. Ha? 
And turne away my tother man ? and faue 
Foure pound a yeere by that? there's lucke, and thrift too! 
The very Diuell may come, heereafter, as well. 
Friend, I receiue you: but (withall) I acquaint you, 40 
Aforehand, if yo' offend mee, I muft beat you. 

15 He has W, G 17 Even G 21 I'd W, G 22 I 

am G 'Pryihe 1692 'Prithee 1716, W Prithee G 23 An' 

1716, W An G hadft] hast 1692, 1716 26 Sir 1641, f. passim 

28 cozen 1692, f. passim 29 SN. om. G 31 that, I] that I 

1692, f. 37 t'other 1692, f. 39 [Aside. G 41 you 

W, G 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 15 

It is a kinde of exercife, I vfe. 
And cannot be without. PVG. Yes, if I doe not 
Offend, you can, fure. FIT. Faith, Diuell, very hardly : 
I'll call you by your furname, 'caufe I loue it. 45 




YOnder hee walkes, Sir, I'll goe lift him for you. 
WIT. To him, good Ingine, raife him vp by degrees, 
Gently, and hold him there too, you can doe it. 
Shew your felfe now, a Mathematicall broker. 

ING. I'll warrant you for halfe a piece. WIT. 'Tis 
done, S r . 5 

MAN. Is't poffible there mould be fuch a man? 

WIT. You mail be your owne witneffe, I'll not labour 
To tempt you paft your faith. MAN. And is his wife 
So very handfome, fay you ? WIT. I ha' not feene her, 
Since I came home from trauell : and they fay, 10 

Shee is not alter'd. Then, before I went, 
I faw her once ; but fo, as mee hath ftuck 
Still i' my view, no obiel hath remou'd her. 

MAN. Tis a faire gueft, Friend, beauty: and once 
lodg'd [102] 

Deepe in the eyes, mee hardly leaues the Inne. 15 

How do's he keepe her? WIT. Very braue. Howeuer, 
Himself e be fordide, hee is fenfuall that way. 
In euery dreffmg, hee do's fludy her. 

MAN. And furnim forth himself e fo from the Brokers'? 

WIT. Yes, that's a hyr'd fuite, hee now has one, 20 

SD. ACT. . . .] Enter, behind, ENGINE, with a cloke on his arm, 
WITTIPOL, and MANLY. G 5 [Engine goes to Fitzdottrel and takes 

him aside. G 19 j9r0- 1692, 1716 broker W 20 on 1641, f. 

1 6 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

To fee the Diuell is an Affe, to day, in : 

(This Ingine gets three or foure pound a weeke by him) 

He dares not miffe a new Play, or a Feaft, 

What rate foeuer clothes be at; and thinkes 

Himfelfe Hill new, in other mens old. MAN. But ftay, 25 

Do's he loue meat fo? WIT. Faith he do's not hate it. 

But that's not it. His belly and his palate 

Would be compounded with for reafon. Mary, 

A wit he has, of that ftrange credit with him, 

'Gainft all mankinde ; as it doth make him doe 30 

luft what it lift : it rauifhes him forth, 

Whither it pleafe, to any affembly'or place, 

And would conclude him ruin'd, mould hee fcape 

One publike meeting, out of the beliefe 

He has of his owne great, and Catholike flrengths, 35 

In arguing, and difcourfe. It takes, I fee : 

H'has got the cloak vpon him. 

Ingine hath won Fitzdottrel, to 'fay on the cloake. 

FIT. A faire garment, 

By my faith, Ingine \ ING. It was neuer made, Sir, 
For three fcore pound, I allure you : 'Twill yeeld thirty. 
The plum, Sir, coft three pound, ten millings a yard! 40 
And then the lace, and veluet. FIT. I mall, Ingine, 
Be look'd at, pretitly, in it ! Art thou fure 
The Play is play'd to day ? ING. 6 here's the bill, S r . 

Hee giues him the Play-bill. 

I', had forgot to gi't you. FIT. Ha ? the Diuell ! 
I will not lofe you, Sirah ! But, Ingine, thinke you, 45 

The Gallant is fo furious in his folly? 
So mad vpon the matter, that hee'll part 
With's cloake vpo' thefe termes? ING. Trufl not your 


Breake me to pieces elfe, as you would doe 
A rotten Crane, or an old nifty lacke, 50 

28 Marry 1692, f. 32 whether 1716 36 SN. 'say] say 

1641, f. SN. om. G 37 Fitz. [after saying on the cloke.~\ G 

42 prettily 1641, f. 44 F , had] I'd 1716 I had W, G 

gi't] give it G 48 upon 1716, f. 50 Cain 1692 Cane 1716 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 17 

That has not one true wheele in him. Doe but talke with 


FIT. I mail doe that, to fatisfie you, Ingine, 
And my felfe too. With your leaue, Gentlemen. 

Hee turnes to Wittipol. 
Which of you is it, is fo meere Idolater 
To my wiues beauty, and fo very prodigall 55 

Vnto my patience, that, for the mort parlee? 
Of one fwift houres quarter, with my wife, 
He will depart with (let mee fee) this cloake here 
The price of folly? Sir, are you the man? 

WIT. I am that vent'rer, Sir. FIT. Good time! your 

name 60 

Is Witty-poll WIT. The fame, S r . FIT. And 'tis told 

me, [103] 

Yo' haue trauell'd lately? WIT. That I haue, S r . FIT. 


Your trauells may haue alter'd your complexion ; 
But fure, your wit flood ftill. WIT. It may well be, Sir. 
All heads ha' not like growth. FIT. The good mans 
grauity, 65 

That left you land, your father, neuer taught you 
Thefe pleafant matches? WIT. No, nor can his mirth, 
With whom I make 'hem, put me off. FIT. You are 
Refolu'd then ? WIT. Yes, S r . FIT. Beauty is the Saint, 
You'll facrifice your felfe, into the Ihirt too? 70 

WIT. So I may ftill cloth, and keepe warme your wif- 

FIT. You lade me S r ! WIT. I know what you wil 

beare, S r . 

FIT. Well, to the point. 'Tis only, Sir, you fay, 
To fpeake vnto my wife? WIT. Only, to fpeake to her. 
FIT. And in my prefence? WIT. In your very pref- 
ence. 75 

51 with him] with W 53 too. [comes forward.] G SN. om. 

G 60 venturer G 62 You G 70 comma om. after 

'selfe' 1692, f. to W, G 

1 8 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

FIT. And in my hearing? WIT. In your hearing: fo, 
You interrupt vs not. FIT. For the fhort fpace 
You doe demand, the fourth part of an houre, 
I thinke I fhall, with fome conuenient ftudy, 
And this good helpe to boot, bring my felfe to't. 80 

Hee flirugs himfelfe vp in the cloake. 

WIT. I aske no more. FIT. Pleafe you, walk to'ard 

my houfe, 

Speake what you lift ; that time is yours : My right 
I haue departed with. But, not beyond, 
A minute, or a fecond, looke for. Length, 
And drawing out, ma'aduance much, to thefe matches. 85 
And I except all kiffing. KifTes are 
Silent petitions ftill with willing Loners. 

WIT. Loners'? How falls that o' your phantfie? FIT. 

I doe know fomewhat, I forbid all lip-worke. 

WIT. I am not eager at forbidden dainties. 90 

Who couets vnfit things, denies him felfe. 

FIT. You fay well, Sir, 'Twas prettily faid, that fame, 
He do's, indeed. I'll haue no touches, therefore, 
Nor takings by the armes, nor tender circles 
Caft 'bout the waft, but all be done at diftance. 95 

Loue is brought vp with thofe foft migniard handlings; 
His pulfe lies in his palme : and I defend 
All melting ioynts, and ringers, (that's my bargaine) 
I doe defend 'hem, any thing like a6lion. 
But talke, Sir, what you will. Vfe all the Tropes 100 

And Schemes, that Prince Quintilian can afford you : 
And much good do your Rhetoriques heart. You are wel 
come, Sir. 

Ingine, God b'w'you. WIT. Sir, I muft condition 
To haue this Gentleman by, a witneffe. FIT. Well, 
I am content, fo he be filent. MAN. Yes, S r. 105 

80 SN. Hee om. G 82 is om. 1641 85 may W, G 

88 phant'sie W phantasy G o' ret. G 99 comma om. W, G 

102 [Opens the door of his house. G 103 b'w'J be wi' G 

Sc. v] The Diuell is an Asse 19 

FIT. Come Diuell, I'll make you roome, ftreight. But 

I'll mew you 

Firft, to your MiftrefTe, who's no common one, 
You mufl conceiue, that brings this gaine to fee her. [104] 
I hope thou'ft brought me good lucke. PVG. I mall do't. 




Ngine, you hope o' your halfe piece? Tis there, Sir. 

Be gone. Friend Manly, who's within here ? fixed ? 

Wittipol knocks his friend o' the brefl. 

MAN. I am directly in a fit of wonder 
What'll be the iflue of this conference ! 

WIT. For that, ne'r vex your felfe, till the euent. 5 

How like yo' him ? MAN. I would f aine fee more of him. 

WIT. What thinke you of this? MAN. I am paft de 
grees of thinking. 
Old Africk, and the new America, 
With all their fruite of Monfters cannot fhew 
So iuft a prodigie. WIT. Could you haue beleeu'd, 10 
Without your fight, a minde fo fordide inward, 
Should be fo fpecious, and layd forth abroad, 
To all the fhew, that euer fhop, or ware was ? 

MAN. I beleeue any thing now, though I confeffe 
His Vices are the moft extremities 15 

I euer knew in nature. But, why loues hee 
The Diuell fo ? WIT. O S r ! for hidden treafure, 
Hee hopes to finde : and has propos'd himfelfe 
So infinite a Maffe, as to recouer, 

108 this om. 1641 109 [They all enter the house. G 

SD. ACT. . . .] om. SCENE III. A Room in FITZDOTTREL'S House. 
Enter WITTIPOL, MANLY, and ENGINE. G 2 SN.] gone. [Exit 

Engine.] fixed ! [knocks him on the breast. G 4 '11] will G 

2O The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

He cares not what he parts with, of the prefent, 20 

To his men of Art, who are the race, may coyne him. 

Promife gold-mountaines, and the couetous 

Are Hill mofl prodigall. MAN. But ha' you faith, 

That he will hold his bargaine? WIT. O deare, Sir! 

He will not off on't. Feare him not. I know him. 25 

One bafeneffe flill accompanies another. 

See ! he is heere already, and his wife too. 

MAN. A wondrous handfome creature, as I Hue ! 

ACT. I. SCENE. VI. t lo s] 



COme wife, this is the Gentleman. Nay, blufh not. 
M re . Fi. Why, what do you meane Sir? ha' you 

your reafon? FIT. Wife, 
I do not know, that I haue lent it forth 
To any one ; at leaft, without a pawne, wife : 
Or that I'haue eat or drunke the thing, of late, 5 

That mould corrupt it. Wherefore gentle wife, 
Obey, it is thy vertue: hold no als 
Of difputation. M rs . Fi. Are you not enough 
The talke, of feafts, and meetingy, but you'll flill 
Make argument for frelh? FIT. Why, carefull wed- 

locke, 10 

If I haue haue a longing to haue one tale more 
Goe of mee, what is that to thee, deare heart? 
Why fhouldft thou enuy my delight? or croffe it? 
By being felicitous, when it not concernes thee? 

M rs . Fi. Yes, I haue mare in this. The fcorne will 

fall 15 

SD. om. Enter FITZDOTTREL, with Mrs, FRANCES his -wife. G 
9 Meetings 1692, 1716 meetings 1641, W, G n I haue] I'veW 

haue a] a 1641, f. 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 21 

As bittterly on me, where both are laught at. 

FIT. Laught at, fweet bird ? is that the fcruple ? Come, 

Thou art a Niaife. 

A Niaife is a young Hawke, tone crying out of the neft. 

Which of your great houfes, 
(I will not meane at home, here, but abroad) 
Your families in France, wife, fend not forth 20 

Something, within the feuen yeere, may be laught at? 
I doe not fay feuen moneths, nor feuen weekes, 
Nor feuen daies, nor houres : but feuen yeere wife. 
I giue 'hem time. Once, within feuen yeere, 
I thinke they may doe fomething may be laught at. 25 

In France, I keepe me there, flill. Wherefore, wife, 
Let them that lift, laugh flill, rather then weepe 
For me ; Heere is a cloake coil fifty pound, wife, 
Which I can fell for thirty, when I ha' feene 
All London in% and London has feene mee. 30 

To day, I goe to the Black-fryers Play-houfe, 
Sit ithe view, falute all my acquaintance, 
Rife vp betweene the Acls, let fall my cloake, 
Publim a handfome man, and a rich fuite 
(As that's a fpeciall end, why we goe thither, 35 

All that pretend, to ftand for't o' the Stage) 
The Ladies aske who's that ? (For, they doe come [106] 
To fee vs, Loue, as wee doe to fee them) 
Now, I mail lofe all this, for the falfe feare 
Of being laught at? Yes, wuffe. Let 'hem laugh, 
wife, 40 

Let me haue fuch another cloake to morrow. 
And let 'hem laugh againe, wife, and againe, 
And then grow fat with laughing, and then fatter, 
All my young Gallants, let 'hem bring their friends too: 
Shall I forbid 'hem? No, let heauen forbid 'hem: 45 
Or wit, if't haue any charge on 'hem. Come, thy eare, wife, 

18 SN. om. G 19 ( ) ret. G 32 i' the 1641, 1692, 1716, 

W in the G 44 'hem] 'em G 46 't] it G 'hem] 'em G 

22 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

Is all, I'll borrow of thee. Set your watch, Sir, 

Thou, onely art to heare, not fpeake a word, Done, 

To ought he fayes. That I doe gi' you in precept, 

No leffe then councell, on your wiue-hood, wife, 50 

Not thongh he flatter you, or make court, or Loue 

(As you muft looke for thefe) or fay, he raile; 

What ere his arts be, wife, I will haue thee 

Delude 'hem with a trick, thy obftinate filence; 

I know aduantages ; and I loue to hit 55 

Thefe pragmaticke young men, at their owne weapons. 

Is your watch ready ? Here my faile beares, for you : * 

Tack toward him, fweet Pinnace, where's your watch ? 

He difpofes his wife to his place, and fets his watch. 

WIT. I'le fet it, Sir, with yours. M 18 . Fi. I muft obey. 

MAN. Her modefty feemes to fuffer with her beauty, 60 
And fo, as if his folly were away, 

It were worth pitty. FIT. Now, th'are right, beginne, Sir. 
But firft, let me repeat the contract, briefely. 

Hee repeats his contract againe. 
I am, Sir, to inioy this cloake, I Hand in, 
Freely, and as your gift; vpon condition 65 

You may as freely, fpeake here to my fpoufe, 
Your quarter of an houre alwaies keeping 
The meafur'd diftance of your yard, or more, 
From my faid Spoufe : and in my fight and hearing. 
This is yonr couenant? WIT. Yes, but you'll allow 70 
For this time fpent, now? FIT. Set 'hem fo much backe. 

WIT. I thinke, I fhall not need it. FIT. Well, begin, 

There is your bound, Sir. Not beyond that rum. 

WIT. If you interrupt me, Sir, I fhall difcloake you. 

Wittipol beginnes. 

The time I haue purchaft, Lady, is but fhort ; 75 

And, therefore, if I imploy it thriftily, 

49 gi'] give G 51 though 1641, f. 52 ( ) om. G 

58 SN.] He disposes his wife to her place. G 59 [Aside. G 

63 th'art 1641, 1692, 1716 they are W, G SN. om. G 64 en 

joy 1692, f. 74 SN. om. G 76 employ W, G 


Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 23 

I hope I fland the neerer to my pardon. 
I am not here, to tell you, you are faire, 
Or louely, or how well you dreffe you, Lady, 
I'll faue my felfe that eloquence of your glaffe, 80 

Which can fpeake thefe things better to you then I. 
And 'tis a knowledge, wherein fooles may be 
As wife as a Court Parliament. Nor come I, 
With any prejudice, or doubt, that you [107] 

Should, to the notice of your owne worth, neede 85 

Leaft reuelation. Shee's a fimple woman, 
Know's not her good: (who euer knowes her ill) 
And at all caracls. That you are the wife, 
To fo much blafled flefh, as fcarce hath foule, 
In flead of fait, to keepe it fweete; I thinke, 90 

Will aske no witneffes, to proue. The cold 
Sheetes that you lie in, with the watching candle, 
That fees, how dull to any thaw of beauty, 
Pieces, and quarters, halfe, and whole nights, fometimes, 
The Diuell-giuen Elfine Squire, your husband, 95 

Doth leaue you, quitting heere his proper circle, 
For a much-worfe i' the walks of Lincolnes Inne, 
Vnder the Elmes, t'expeft the feind in vaine, there 
Will confeiTe for you. FIT. I did looke for this geere. 
WIT. And what a daughter of darkneffe, he do's make 
you, loo 

Lock'd vp from all fociety, or obje6l; 
Your eye not let to looke vpon a face, 
Vnder a Conjurers (or fome mould for one, 
Hollow, and leane like his) but, by great meanes, 
As I now make; your owne too fenfible fufferings, 105 
Without the extraordinary aydes, 
Of f pells, or fpirits, may affure you, Lady. 
For my part, I proteft 'gainft all fuch practice, 
I worke by no falfe arts, medicines, or charmes 
To be said forward and backward. FIT. No, I except : 1 10 

83 came W 88 characts 1692 Characts 1716 99 jeer 

W, G 

24 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

WIT. Sir I fhall eafe you. 

He offers to difcloake him. 
FIT. Mum. WIT. Nor haue I ends, Lady, 
Vpon you, more then this : to tell you how Loue 
Beauties good Angell, he that waits vpon her 
At all occasions, and no leffe then Fortune, 
Helps th' aduenturous, in mee makes that proffer, 115 

Which neuer f aire one was fo fond, to lofe ; 
Who could but reach a hand forth to her f reedome : 
On the firft fight, I lou'd you : fmce which time, 
Though I haue trauell'd, I haue beene in trauell 
More for this fecond bleffmg of your eyes 120 

Which now I'haue purchas'd, then for all aymes elfe. 
Thinke of it, Lady, be your minde as aCliue, 
As is your beauty: view your object well. 
Examine both my f afhion, and my yeeres ; 
Things, that are like, are foone familiar : 125 

And Nature ioyes, Hill in equality. 
Let not the figne o' the husband fright you, Lady. 
But ere your fpring be gone, inioy it. Flowers, 
Though faire, are oft but of one morning. Thinke, 
All beauty doth not laft vntill the autumne. 130 

You grow old, while I tell you this. And fuch, [108] 
As cannot vfe the prefent, are not wife. 
If Loue and Fortune will take care of vs, 
Why tfhould our will be wanting? This is all. 
Wha doe you anfwer, Lady ? 

Shee flands mute. 

FIT. Now, the fport comes. 135 

Let him Hill waite, waite, waiter while the watch goes, 
And the time runs. Wife! WIT.. How! not any word? 
Nay, then, I tafte a tricke in't. Worthy Lady, 
I cannot be fo falfe to mine owne thoughts 
Of your prefumed goodneffe, to conceiue 140 

115 adventrous 1692, 1716 advent'rous W th'] the G 
117 forth] out 1641 121 F haue] I have 1692 I've 1716, f. 

127 o'] of G 134, 5 misplaced t adjusted 1692, f. 135 SN. 

om. G 139 my G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 25 

This, as your rudeneffe, which I fee's impos'd. 

Yet, fmce your cautelous laylor, here ftands by you, 

And yo' are deni'd the liberty o' the houfe, 

Let me take warrant, Lady, from your filence, 

(Which euer is interpreted confent) 145 

To make your anfwer for you : which fhall be 

To as good purpofe, as I can imagine, 

And what I thinke you'ld fpeake. FIT. No, no, no, no. 

WIT. I mall refume, S r . MAN. Sir, what doe you 
meane ? 

He fets M r . Manly, his friend in her place. 

WIT. One interruption more, Sir, and you goe 150 

Into your hofe and doublet, nothing faues you. 
And therefore harken. This is for your wife. 

MAN. You muft play faire, S r . WIT. Stand for mee, 
good friend. 

And f peaks for her. 

Troth, Sir, tis more then true, that you haue vttred 
Of my vnequall, and fo fordide match heere, 155 

With all the circumftances of my bondage. 
I haue a husband, and a two-legg'd one, 
But fuch a moon-ling, as no wit of man 
Or rofes can redeeme from being an AfTe. 
H'is growne too much, the ftory of mens mouthes, 160 
To fcape his lading : mould I make't my fludy, 
And lay all wayes, yea, call mankind to helpe, 
To take his burden off, why, this one a6l 
Of his, to let his wife out to be courted, 
And, at a price, proclaimes his afmine nature 165 

So lowd, as I am weary of my title to him. 
But Sir, you feeme a Gentleman of vertue, 
No leffe then blood ; and one that euery way 
Lookes as he were of too good quality, 

143 you're 1716, W you are G 149, 153 SN. [Sets Manly in 

his place, and speaks for the lady. (after 'friend.' 153) G 

I54utt'red 1692 utter'd 1716, f. 160 He's 1716, f. 
161 T' escape W To 'scape 1716 

26 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

To intrap a credulous woman, or betray her : 170 

Since you haue payd thus deare, Sir, for a vifit, 

And made fuch venter, on your wit, and charge 

Meerely to fee mee, or at moft to fpeake to mee, 

I were too flupid; or (what's worfe) ingrate 

Not to returne your venter. Thinke, but how, 175 

I may with fafety doe it; I mall truft 

My loue and honour to you, and prefume ; 

You'll euer hufband both, againft this husband; [109] 

Who, if we chance to change his liberall eares, 

To other enfignes, and with labour make 180 

A new beaft of him, as hee mall deferue, 

Cannot complaine, hee is vnkindly dealth with. 

This day hee is to goe to a new play, Sir. 

From whence no feare, no, nor authority, 

Scarcely the Kings command, Sir, will reftraine him, 185 

Now you haue fitted him with a Stage-garment, 

For the meere names fake, were there nothing elfe : 

And many more fuch iourneyes, hee will make. 

Which, if they now, or, any time heereafter, 

Offer vs opportunity, you heare, Sir, 190 

Who'll be as glad, and forward to imbrace, 

Meete, and enioy it chearefully as you. 

I humbly thanke you, Lady. 

Hee fliifts to his owne place againe 

FIT. Keepe your ground Sir. 

WIT. Will you be lightned? FIT. Mum. WIT. And 

but I am, 

By the fad contract, thus to take my leaue of you 195 

At this fo enuious diftance, I had taught 
Our lips ere this, to feale the happy mixture 
Made of our foules. But we muft both, now, yeeld 
To the neceffity. Doe not thinke yet, Lady, 

172, 5 venture 1692, f. 182 dealt 1692, f. 187 nothing] 

no things 1692, 1716 191 embrace 1692, f. 193 SN. om. 

1641, 1692, 1716 Hee om. G 194 lighten'd 1716, f. 

195 sad] said W, G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 27 

But I can kiffe, and touch, and laugh, and whifper, 200 

And doe thofe crowning court-fhips too, for which, 

Day, and the publike haue allow'd no name 

But, now, my bargaine binds me. 'Twere rude iniury, 

T'importune more, or vrge a noble nature, 

To what of it's owne bounty it is prone to : 205 

Elfe, I mould fpeake But, Lady, I loue fo well, 

As I will hope, you'll doe fo to. I haue done, Sir. 

FIT. Well, then, I ha' won? WIT. Sir, And I may 
win, too. 

FIT. O yes ! no doubt on't. I'll take carefull order, 
That fhee mall hang forth enfignes at the window, 210 

To tell you when I am abfent. Or I'll keepe 
Three or foure foote-men, ready ftill of purpofe, 
To runne and fetch you, at her longings; Sir. 
I'll goe befpeake me ftraight a guilt caroch, 
For her and you to take the ay re in. Yes, 215 

Into Hide-parke, and thence into Black-Fryers, 
Vifit the painters, where you may fee pictures, 
And note the propereft limbs, and how to make 'hem. 
Or what doe you fay vnto a middling Goffip 
To bring you aye together, at her lodging? 220 

Vnder pretext of teaching o' my wife 
Some rare receit of drawing almond milke? ha? 
It fhall be a part of my care. Good Sir, God b'w'you. 
I ha' kept the contrail, and the cloake is mine. 

WIT. Why, much good do't you S r ; it may fall 
out, [no] 225 

That you ha' bought it deare, though I ha' not fold it. 

FIT. A pretty riddle ! Fare you well, good Sir. 
Wife, your face this way, looke on me: and thinke 
Yo' haue had a wicked dreame, wife, and forget it. 

Hee turnes his wife about. 

MAN. This is the flrangeft motion I ere faw. 230 

211 I am] I'm W 223 be wi' G 224 is mine] is mine 

owne 1641 is mine own 1692 's mine own 1716, W, G 226 I 

ha'] I've G [Exit. G 229 Ya' have 1692 You've 1716 You 

W, G SN. om. G 230 [Exit. G 

28 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

FIT. Now, wife, fits this faire cloake the worfe vpon me, 
For my great fufferings, or your little patience? ha? 
They laugh, you thinke ? M rs . Fi. Why S r . and you might 


What thought, they haue of you, may be foone collected 
By the young Genlemans fpeache. FIT. Youug Gentle 
man ? 235 
Death ! you are in loue with him, are you ? could he not 
Be nam'd the Gentleman, without the young? 
Vp to your Cabbin againe. M ra . Fi My cage, yo' were 


To call it ? FIT. Yes, fing there. You'ld f aine be making 
Blanck Manger with him at your mothers ! I know you. 240 
Goe get you vp. How now ! what fay you, Diuell ? 



HEere is one Ingine, Sir, defires to fpeake with you. 
FIT. I thought he brought fome newes, of a broker ! 

Let him come in, good Diuell: fetch him elfe. 
O, my fine Ingine \ what's th'aff aire ? more cheats ? 

ING. No Sir, the Wit, the Braine, the great ProieBor, 5 
I told you of, is newly come to towne. 

FIT. Where, Inginet ING. I ha' brought him (H'is 


Ere hee pull'd off his boots, Sir, but fo follow'd, 
For bufmeffes: FIT. But what is a Proieflor? 

235 Youug] Young 1641, f. Gentlmans 1641 Gentleman's 1692, 
1716 gentleman's W, G 240 him] it 1641 241 up. [Exit 

Mrs. Fitz. Enter PUG. G 

SD. om. G 3 Exit Pug. Re-enter ENGINE. G 4 th'] 

theG 7 H'is] he's 1716, f. ( ) ret. G 9 businesse 1641 

Sc. vn] The Diuell is an Asse 29 

I would conceiue. ING. Why, one Sir, that proie&s 10 
Wayes to enrich men, or to make 'hem great, 
By fuites, by marriages, by vndertakings : 
According as he fees they humour it. 

FIT. Can hee not coniure at all ? ING. I thinke he can, 


(To tell you true) but, you doe know, of late, 15 

The State hath tane fuch note of 'hem, and compell'd 'hem, 
To enter fuch great bonds, they dare not practice. 

FIT. 'Tis true, and I lie fallow for't, the while ! 

ING. O, Sir ! you'll grow the richer for the reft. 

FIT. I hope I fhall : but Ingine, you doe talke 20 

Somewhat too much, o' my courfes. My Cloake-cuftomer 
Could tell mee ftrange particulars. ING. By my 
meanes ? [ 1 1 1 ] 

FIT. How fhould he haue 'hem elfe? ING. You do 

not know, S r , 

What he has : and by what arts ! A monei'd man, Sir, 
And is as great with your Almanack-Men, as you are ! 25 

FIT. That Gallant? ING. You make the other wait too 

long, here: 
And hee is extreme puncluall. FIT. Is he a gallant? 

ING. Sir, you fhall fee : He'is in his riding fuit, 
As hee comes now from Court. But heere him fpeake : 
Minifter matter to him, and then tell mee. 30 

12 undertaking 1641 16 'hem] 'em G 21 o' ret. G 

27 a om. 1692, 1716, W 28 He'is] He's 1716 he's W, G 

30 {Exeunt. G 

3O The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 



Sir, money's a whore, a bawd, a drudge; 
Fit to runne out on errands : Let her goe. 
Via pecunial when me's runne and gone, 
And fled and dead ; then will I fetch her, againe, 
With Aquar-vita, out of an old Hogs-head ! 5 

While there are lees of wine, or dregs of beere, 
I'le neuer want her ! Coyne her out of cobwebs, 
Duft, but I'll haue her ! Raife wooll vpon egge-lhells, 
Sir, and make graffe grow out o' marro-bones. 
To make her come. (Commend mee to your MiftreiTe, 10 

To a waiter. 

Say, let the thoufand pound but be had ready, 
And it is done) I would but fee the creature 
(Of flefh, and blood) the man, the prince, indeed, 
That could imploy fo many millions 
As I would help him to. FIT. How, talks he? millions? 15 

MER. (I'll giue you an account of this to morrow.) 
Yes, I will talke no leffe, and doe it too ; 

To another. 

If they were Myriades : and without the Diuell, 
By direft meanes, it fhall be good in law. ING. Sir. [112] 
MER. Tell M r . Wood-cock, I'll not faile to meet him 20 

To a third. 

SD. MEER . . .] A Room in Fitzdottrel's House. Enter FITZ- 
DOTTREL, ENGINE, and MEERCRAFT, followed by TRAINS with a bag, and 
three or four Attendants. G i *s] is G 10 SN. To . . .} 

[To i Attendant.} G 12 done. [Exit i Attend.'] G 

14 employ W, G 15 How, talks] How talks 1716, f. 

17 SN.] [To 2 Attendant.} [Exit 2 Atten. G talke] take 1641, 1716, f. 

18 Myriads 1716 Myriads W myriads G 20 SN. om. 1641, 
1692, 1716, W [to 3 Atten.} G M r .] master G passim 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 31 

Vpon th' Exchange at night. Pray him to haue 
The writings there, and wee'll difpatch it. Sir, 

He turnes to Fitz-dottrel. 
You are a Gentleman of a good prefence, 
A handfome man (I haue coniidered you) 
As a fit ftocke to graft honours vpon : 25 

I haue a proiecl to make you a Duke, now. 
That you muft be one, within fo many moneths, 
As I fet downe, out of true reafon of ftate, 
You ma' not auoyd it. But you muft harken, then. 

ING. Harken ? why S r , do you doubt his eares ? Alas ! 30 
You doe not know Mailer Fitz-dottrel. 

FIT. He do's not know me indeed. I thank you, Ingine, 
For rectifying him. MER. Good ! Why, Ingine, then 

He turnes to Ingine. 

I'le tell it you. (I fee you ha' credit, here, 
And, that you can keepe counfell, I'll not queftion.) 35 
Hee mail but be an vndertaker with mee, 
In a moft f eafible bus'neffe. It mall coft him 
Nothing. ING. Good, S r . MER. Except he pleafe, but's 

count'nance ; 

(That I will haue) t'appeare in't, to great men, 
For which I'll make him one. Hee mall not draw 40 

A firing of's purfe. I'll driue his pattent for him. 
We'll take in Cittizens, Commoners, and Aldermen, 
To beare the charge, and blow 'hem off againe, 
Like fo many dead flyes, when 'tis carryed. 
The thing is for recouery of drown'd land, 45 

Whereof the Crowne's to haue his moiety, 
If it be owner ; Elfe, the Crowne and Owners 
To mare that moyety : and the recouerers 
T'enioy the tother moyety, for their charge. 

ING. Thorowout England? MER. Yes, which will 
arife 50 

22 it. \_Exit3 Atten.~\ G SN. om. 1641, f. 24 ( ) om. W 

28 reasons G 29 sha'] shall G 33 SN. om. 1641, f. 

34 it om. 1641 34, 35, 39 ( ) ret. G 44 'tis] it is G 

46 his] a 1641, f. 50 Throughout 1641, 1692, 1716, W Thor- 

oughout G 

32 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

To eyghteene millions, feuen the firft yeere : 
I haue computed all, and made my furuay 
Vnto an acre. I'll beginne at the Pan, 
Not, at the skirts : as fome ha' done, and loft, 
All that they wrought, their timber- worke, their trench, 55 
Their bankes all borne away, or elfe fill'd vp 
By the next winter. Tut, they neuer went 
The way : I'll haue it all. ING. A gallant tracl 
Of land it is ! MER. 'Twill yeeld a pound an acre. 
Wee muft let cheape, euer, at firft. But Sir, 60 

This lookes too large for you, I fee. Come hither, 
We'll haue a leffe. Here's a plain fellow, you fee him, 
Has his black bag of papers, there, in Buckram, 
Wi' not be fold for th'Earledome of Pancridge : Draw, 
Gi' me out one, by chance. Proie6l. 4. Dog-skinnes? 65 
Twelue thoufand pound ! the very worft, at firft. [i 13] 

FIT. Pray, you let's fee't Sir. MER. 'Tis a toy, a trifle ! 
FIT. Trifle! 12. thoufand pound for dogs-skins? MER. 


But, by my way of dreffing, you muft know, Sir, 
And med'cining the leather, to a height 70 

Of improu'd ware, like your Borachio 
Of Spaine, Sir. I can fetch nine thoufand for't 

ING. Of the Kings glouer ? MER. Yes, how heard you 

ING. Sir, I doe know you can. MER. Within this 

houre : 

And referue halfe my fecret. Pluck another; 75 

See if thou haft a happier hand : I thought fo. 

Hee pluckes out the 2. Bottle-ale. 

53 an] my 1692, f. 62 fellow, {points to Trains} G 

64 Wi'] Will W, G 65 chance. [ Trains gives him a paper out of 

the bag.] G Project; foure 1641 Project; four 1692, 1716 Pro 
ject four : W Project four : G Dog-skinnes] dogs-skins 1641 
Dogs Skins 1692, 1716 dogs skins W Dogs' skins G 67 see't] 

see it G 68 MER. Yes,] included in line 69 1692, 1716, W 

69 my om. 1641 76 SN. Hee . . . ] [Trains draws out another.] 

(after ' hand : ' 76) G 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 33 

The very next worfe to it ! Bottle-ale. 

Yet, this is two and twenty thoufand! Pr'y thee 

Pull out another, two or three. FIT. Good, flay, friend, 

By bottle-ale, two and twenty thoufand pound ? 80 

MER. Yes, Sir, it's cafl to penny-hal'penny-farthing, 
O' the back-fide, there you may fee it, read, 
I will not bate a Harrington o' the fumme. 
I'll winne it i' my water, and my malt, 

My furnaces, and hanging o' my coppers, 85 

The tonning, and the' fubtilty o' my yeft ; 
And, then the earth of my bottles, which I dig, 
Turne vp, and fteepe, and worke, and neale, my felfe, 
To a degree of Pore' lane. You will wonder, 
At my proportions, what I will put vp 90 

In feuen yeeres ! for fo long time, I aske 
For my inuention. I will faue in cork, 
In my mere flop'ling, 'boue three thoufand pound, 
Within that terme: by googing of 'hem out 
luft to the fize of my bottles, and not flicing, 95 

There's infinite lofle i' that. What haft thou there ? 
O' making wine of raifms : this is in hand, now, 

Hee drawes out another. Raifines. 

ING. Is not that ftrange, S r , to make wine of raifms? 

MER. Yes, and as true a wine, as th' wines of France, 
Or Spaine, or Italy, Looke of what grape 100 

My railin is, that wine I'll render perfect, 
As of the mufcatell grape, I'll render mufcatell ; 
Of the Canary, his ; the Claret, his ; 
So of all kinds : and bate you of the prices, 
Of wine, throughout the kingdome, halfe in halfe. 105 

ING. But, how, S r , if you raife the other commodity, 
Rayfins? MER. Why, then I'll make it out of black 
berries : 

78 Pr'y thee] Pry'thee W Prithee G 78-80 Pr'y thee pound ? 

om. 1692, 1716 81 hal'] half G 89 Proc'lane 1641 por- 

celane G 93 above G 97 O'] O ! G SN.] [Trains 

draws out another ,~\ G 99 a om. 1641 103 Of the] Of 1641 


The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

And it ihall doe the fame. Tis but more art, 

And the charge leffe. Take out another. FIT. No, good 


Saue you the trouble, Fie not looke, nor heare no 

Of any, but your firlt, there; the Drown' d-land \ 
If t will doe, as you fay. MER. Sir, there's not place, 
To gi' you demonflration of thefe things. [114] 

They are a little to fubtle. But, I could fhew you 
Such a neceffity in't, as you mufl be 115 

But what you pleafe : againft the receiu'd herefie, 
That England beares no Dukes. Keepe you the land, S r , 
The greatneffe of th' eftate mall throw't vpon you. 
If you like better turning it to money, 

What may not you, S r , purchafe with that wealth? 120 

Say, you mould part with two o' your millions, 
To be the thing you would, who would not do't ? 
As I proteft, I will, out of my diuident, 
Lay, for fome pretty principality, 

In Italy, from the Church : Now, you perhaps, 125 

Fancy the fmoake of England, rather? But 
Ha' you no priuate roome, Sir, to draw to, 
T'enlarge our felues more vpon. FIT. O yes, Diuell \ 

MER. Thefe, Sir, are bus'nefles, aske to be carryed 
With caution, and in cloud. FIT. I apprehend, 130 

They doe fo, S r . Diuell, which way is your Miftreffe ? 

PVG. Aboue, S r . in her chamber. FIT. O that's well. 
Then, this way, good, Sir. MER. I mail follow you; 


Gi' mee the bag, and goe you prefently, 
Commend my feruice to my Lady Tail-bufli. 135 

Tell her I am come from Court this morning ; fay, 
I'haue got our bus'neffe mou'd, and well : Intreat her, 
That mee giue you the four-fcore Angels, and fee 'hem 
Difpos'd of to my Councel, Sir Poul Eytherfide. 

114 subtile 1692, 1716, W 115 in't] in it G 123 Divi 

dend 1716 dividend W, G 124 petty 1692, 1716, W 

131 so om. G sir. Enter PUG. G 137 entreat W, G 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 35 

Sometime, to day, I'll waite vpon her Ladimip, 140 

With the relation. ING. Sir, of what difpatch, 

He is! Do you marke? MER. Ingine, when did you fee 

My coufm Euer-illt keepes he ftill your quarter? 

I' the Bermudas! ING. Yes, Sir, he was writing 

This morning, very hard. MER. Be not you knowne to 


That I am come to Towne: I haue effected 146 

A bufmefTe for him, but I would haue it take him, 
Before he thinks fort. ING. Is it pafl? MER. Not yet. 
'Tis well o' the way. ING. O Sir! your worfhip takes 
Infinit paines. MER. I loue Friends, to be a6liue: 150 
A iluggifh nature puts off man, and kinde. 

ING. And fuch a bleffmg followes it. MER. I thanke 
My fate. Pray you let's be priuate, Sir ? FIT. . In, here. 
MER. Where none may interrupt vs. FIT. You heare, 


Lock the flreete-doores fail, and let no one in 155 

(Except they be this Gentlemans followers) 
To trouble mee. Doe you marke? Yo' haue heard and 


Something, to day ; and, by it, you may gather 
Your Miftreffe is a fruite, that's worth the flealing 
And therefore worth the watching. Be you fure, now [115] 
Yo' haue all your eyes about you ; and let in 161 

No lace-woman ; nor bawd, that brings French-mafques, 
And cut-works. See you? Nor old croanes, with wafers, 
To conuey letters. Nor no youths, difguis'd 
Like country- wiues, with creame, and marrow-puddings. 165 
Much knauery may be vented in a pudding, 
Much bawdy intelligence : They'are fhrewd ciphers. 
Nor turne the key to any neyghbours neede ; 
Be't but to kindle fire, or begg a little, 
Put it out, rather : all out, to an afhe, 176 

141 relation. [Exit Trains. G 142 mark? [Aside to Fitz. G 

150 love] love, 1716, W 154 us. [Exeunt Meer. and Engine. G 

157, 161 Yo'haue] You've 1716, W 169 't] it G 

36 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

That they may fee no fmoake. Or water, fpill it : 
Knock o' the empty tubs, that by the found, 
They may be forbid entry. Say, wee are robb'd, 
If any come to borrow a fpoone, or fo. 
I wi' not haue good fortune, or gods bleffmg 175 

Let in, while I am bufie. PVG. Tie take care, Sir : 
They ma' not trouble you, if they would. FIT. Well, 
doe fo. 



I haue no fmgular feruice of this, now ? 
Nor no fuperlatiue Mafter ? I mall wifh 
To be in hell againe, at leafure? Bring, 
A Vice from thence ? That had bin fuch a fubtilty, 
As to bring broad-clothes hither: or tranfport 5 

Frefh oranges into Spaine. I finde it, now: 
My Chief e was i' the right. Can any feind 
Boaft of a better Vice, then heere by nature, 
And art, th'are owners of ? Hell ne'r owne mee, 
But I am taken! the fine tracl; of it 10 

Pulls mee along! To heare men fuch profeffors 
Growne in our fubtleft Sciences \ My firfl A51, now, 
Shall be, to make this Mafter of mine cuckold : 
The primitiue worke of darkneile, I will pra&ife! 
I will deferue fo well of my faire Miftreffe, 15 

By my difcoueries, firft ; my counfells after ; 
And keeping counfell, after that : as who, 
So euer, is one, I'le be another, fure, 

175 will G good fortune, gods blessing] G capitalizes through 
out. 177 [Exit. G 

SD. om. G 5 cloths G 9 they're 1716, f. never G 

18 I will G 

Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 37 

I'll ha' my lhare. Mofl delicate damn'd flelh! 

Shee will be! O! that I could ftay time, now, [116] 20 

Midnight will come too fall vpon mee, I feare, 

To cut my pleafure M rs . Fi. Looke at the back-doore, 

Shee -fends Diuell out. 
One knocks, fee who it is. PVG. Dainty jhe-Diuell\ 

M rs . Fi. I cannot get this venter of the cloake, 
Out of my fancie; nor the Gentlemans way, 25 

He tooke, which though 'twere ftrange, yet 'twas handfome, 
And had a grace withall, beyond the newneffe. 
Sure he will thinke mee that dull ftupid creature, 
Hee faid, and may conclude it; if I finde not 
Some thought to thanke th' attemp. He did prefume, 30 
By all the carriage of it, on my braine, 
For anfwer ; and will fweare 'tis very barren, 
If it can yeeld him no returne Who is it? 

Diuell returnes. 

PVG. MiftrefTe, it is, but firft, let me allure 
The excellence, of MiftrelTes, I am, 35 

Although my Mailers man, my Miftreffe flaue, 
The feruant of her fecrets, and fweete turnes, 
And know, what fitly will conduce to either. 

M rs . Fi. What's this? I pray you come to your felfe 

and thinke 

What your part is : to make an anfwer. Tell, 40 

Who is it at the doore ? PVG. The Gentleman, M rs , 
Who was at the cloake-charge to fpeake with you, 
This morning, who expects onely to take 
Some fmall command'ments from you, what you pleafe, 
Worthy your forme, hee faies, and gentleft manners. 45 

M rs . Fi. O! you'll anon proue his hyr'd man, I feare, 
What has he giu'n you, for this meffage? Sir, 
Bid him pnt off his hopes of ftraw, and leaue 

22 pleasure Enter Mrs. FITZDOTTREL. SN. om. G 23 [Aside 

and exit. G 24 venture 1692, f. 26 it was G 30 at 

tempt 1641, f. 33 SN.] Re-enter PUG. G 34 it is,] it is W 

41 it om. 1692, f. M rs ] Mistresse 1641 Mistris 1692 Mistress 

1716 mistress W, G 48 put 1641, f. 

2 8 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

To fpread his nets, in view, thus. Though they take 

Mailer Fits-dottrell, I am no fuch foule, 50 

Nor faire one, tell him, will be had with ftalking. 

And wilh him to for-beare his a&ing to mee, 

At the Gentlemans chamber-window in Lincolnes-Inne 


That opens to my gallery : elfe, I f weare 
T'acquaint my hufband with his folly, and leaue him 55 
To the iufl rage of his offended iealoufie. 
Or if your Matters fenfe be not fo quicke 
To right mee, tell him, I mail finde a friend 
That will repaire mee. Say, I will be quiet. 
In mine owne houfe? Pray you, in thofe words giue it 
him. 60 

PVG. This is fome foole turn'd! 

He goes out. 

M rs . Fi.. If he be the Matter, 
Now, of that Hate and wit, which I allow him ; 
Sure, hee will vnderfland mee : I durfl not 
Be more direct. For this officious fellow, 
My husbands new groome, is a fpie vpon me, 65 

I finde already. Yet, if he but tell him 
This in my words, hee cannot but conceiue t 11 /] 

Himfelfe both apprehended, and requited. 
I would not haue him thinke hee met a ftatue : 
Or fpoke to one, not there, though I were filent. 70 

How now ? ha' you told him ? PVG. Yes. M M . Fi. And 
what faies he ? 

PVG. Sayes he? That which my felf would fay to you, 

if I durft. 

That you are proude, fweet Miftreile? and with-all, 
A little ignorant, to entertaine 

The good that's proffer'd ; and (by your beauties leaue) 75 
Not all fo wife, as fome true politique wife 
Would be : who hauing match'd with fuch a Nupfon 

59 Period om. after 'quiet' 1716, f. 61 SN.] \_Exit. G 

70 Re-enter PUG. G 

Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 39 

(I fpeake it with my Mailers peace) whofe face 

Hath left t'accufe him, now, for't doth confeffe him, 

What you can make him; will yet (out of fcruple, 80 

And a fpic'd confcience) defraud the poore Gentleman, 

At leafl delay him in the thing he longs for, 

And makes it hs whole ftudy, how to compaffe, 

Onely a title. Could but he write Cuckold, 

He had his ends. For, looke you M rs . Fi. This can be 85 

None but my husbands wit. PVG. My pretious M rB . 

M. Fi. It creaks his Ingine : The groome neuer durfl 
Be, elfe, fo faucy PVG. If it were not clearely, 
His worfhipfull ambition; and the top of it; 
The very forked top too: why mould hee 90 

Keepe you, thus mur'd vp in a back-roome, Miftreffe, 
Allow you ne'r a cafement to the ilreete, 
Feare of engendering by the eyes, with gallants, 
Forbid you paper, pen and inke, like Rats-bane. 
Search your halfe pint of mu feat ell, left a letter 95 

Be funcke i' the pot : and hold your new-laid egge 
Againft the fire, left any charme be writ there? 
Will you make benefit of truth, deare Miftreffe, 
If I doe tell it you : I do't not often? 

I am fet ouer you, imploy'd, indeed, loo 

To watch your fteps, your lookes, your very breathings, 
And to report them to him. Now, if you 
Will be a true, right, delicate fweete Miftreffe, 
Why, wee will make a Cokes of this Wife Mafter, 
We will, my Miftreffe, an abfolute fine Cokes, 105 

And mock, to ayre, all the deepe diligences 
Of fuch a folemne, and effeSluall Affe, 
An Affe to fo good purpofe, as wee'll vfe him. 
I will contriue it fo, that you fhall goe 
To Playes, to Mafques, to Meetings, and to Feafts. 1 10 

78, 80, 81 ( ) ret. G 79 't] it G 84 hs] his 1641, f. 

86 M rs . as in 2. 2. 41 wit. [Aside. G 88 saucy. [Aside. G 

91 black Room 1716 93 engendring 1641 100 employ'd 

1716, f. 

40 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

For, why is all this Rigging, and fine Tackle, Miftris, 
If you neat handfome veffells, of good fayle, 
Put not forth euer, and anon, with your nets 
Abroad into the world. It is your filhing. [118] 

There, you fhal choofe your friends, your feruants, Lady, 
Your (quires of honour; Tie conuey your letters, 116 

Fetch anfwers, doe you all the offices, 
That can belong to your bloud, and beauty. And, 
For the variety, at my times, although 
I am not in due fymmetrie, the man 120 

Of that proportion ; or in rule 
Of phyftcke, of the iuft complexion; 
Or of that truth of Picardill, in clothes, 
To boafl a foueraignty o're Ladies : yet 
I know, to do my turnes, fweet Miftreffe. Come, kiffe 
M". Fi. How now! PVG. Deare delicate Mift. I am 

your flaue, 126 

Your little worme, that loues you: your fine Monkey, 
Your Dogge, your lacke, your Pug, that longs to be 
Stil'd, o' your pleafures. M rs . FIT. Heare you all this ? Sir, 

Pray you, 

Come from your Handing, doe, a little, (pare 130 

Shee thinkes her hufband watches. 

Your felfe, Sir, from your watch, t'applaud your Squire, 
That fo well followes your inftruclions ! 

112 your G 123 Piccardell 1641 126 Mist.] as in 2.2.41 

130 Mrs. Fitz. [aloud] 131 SN. om. G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 41 




HOw now, fweet heart? what's the matter? M rs . Fi. 

You are a ftranger to the plot! you fet not 
Your faucy Diuell, here, to tempt your wife, 
With all the infolent vnciuill language, 
Or a&ion, he could vent? FIT. Did you fo, Diuell? 5 
M re . FIT. Not you ? you were not planted i' your hole to 

heare him, 

Vpo' the ftayres ? or here, behinde the hangings ? 
I doe not know your qualities ? he durfl doe it, 
And you not giue directions? FIT. You mail fee, wife, 
Whether he durft, or no : and what it was, 10 

I did direcl. 

Her husband goes out, and enters presently with a 
cudgell vpon him. 

PVG. Sweet Miflreffe, are you mad? 
FIT. You moft mere Rogue! you open manifeft Vil- 

laine ! 
You Feind apparant you ! you declar'd Hel-hound ! 

PVG. Good S r . FIT. Good Knaue, good Rafcal, and 

good Traitor. 

Now, I doe finde you parcel-Dwe//, indeed. 15 

Vpo' the point of truft ? I' your firft charge ? 
The very day o' your probation? 

To tempt your Miftreffe? You doe fee, good wedlocke, 
How I direfted him. M rs . FIT. Why, where S r ? were 
you? [119] 

SD. om. Enter FITZDOTTREL. G i 's] is G 2 set] 

see W yuponGg 10, IT Whether . . . direct.] All in 

line 10. 1692, 1716 ii SN.] {Exit. Re-enter FITZDOTTREL with 

a cudgel. G 1 8 mistress ! [Beats Pug. G 

42 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

FIT. Nay, there is one blow more, for exercife : 20 
After a pause. He ftrikes him againe 

I told you, I mould doe it. PVG. Would you had done, Sir. 

FIT. O wife, the rareft man ! yet there's another 
To put you in mind o' the laft. fuch a braue man, wife ! 
Within, he has his proiefts, and do's vent 'hem, 

and againe. 

The gallanteft ! where you tentiginous? ha? 25 

Would you be afting of the Incubus"? 
Did her filks milling moue you? PVG. Gentle Sir. 

FIT. Out of my fight. If thy name were not Diuell, 
Thou fhould'ft not flay a minute with me. In, 
Goe, yet flay : yet goe too. I am refolu'd, 30 

What I will doe : and you mall know't afore-hand. 
Soone as the Gentleman is gone, doe you heare? 
I'll helpe your lifping. Wife, fuch a man, wife ! 

Diuell goes out. 

He has fuch plots ! He will make mee a Duke \ 
No leffe, by heauen ! fix Mares, to your coach, wife ! 35 
That's your proportion ! And your coach-man bald ! 
Becaufe he mall be bare, inough. Doe not you laugh, 
We are looking for a place, and all, i' the map 
What to be of. Haue faith, be not an Infidell. 
You know, I am not eafie to be gull'd. 40 

I fweare, when I haue my millions, elfe, I'll make 
Another Dutcheffe ; if you ha' not faith. 

M ra . Fi. You'll ha' too much, I feare, in thefe falfe 

FIT. Spirits? O, no fuch thing! wife! wit, mere wit! 
This man defies the Diuell, and all his works ! 45 

He dos't by Ingine, and deuifes, hee ! 
He has his winged ploughes, that goe with failes, 
Will plough you forty acres, at once ! and mills, 
Will fpout you water, ten miles off ! All Crowland 
Is ours, wife; and the fens, from vs, in Norfolke, 50 

20 SN.] [Strikes him again. G 22, 23 yet ... last] enclosed 

by ( ) W, G 23 o' ret. G 25 where] were 1716, W Were 

G 24 SN.] [Seats him again.} G 33 SN.] [Exit Pug.~] G 

46 Engine 1716 Engine W engine G 

Sc. iv] The Dntell is an Asse 43 

To the vtmoft bound of Lincoln-fliire ! we haue view'd it, 

And meafur'd it within all ; by the fcale ! 

The richeft tral of land, Loue, i' the kingdome ! 

There will be made feuenteene, or eighteene millions; 

Or more, as't may be handled ! wherefore, thinke, 55 

Sweet heart, if th' haft a fancy to one place, 

More then another, to be Dutcheffe of ; 

Now, name it: I will ha't what ere it coil, 

(If't will be had for money) either here, 59 

Or'n France, or Italy. M rs . Fi. You ha' ftrange phantafies ! 



WHere are you, Sir? FIT. I fee thou haft no 
talent [120] 

This way, wife. Vp to thy gallery ; doe, Chuck, 
Leaue vs to talke of it, who vnderftand it. 

MER. I thinke we ha' found a place to fit you, now, Sir. 

Gloc'fter. FIT. O, no, I'll none! MER. Why, S r ? FIT. 

Tis fatall. 5 

MER. That you fay right in. Spenfer, I thinke, the 

Had his laft honour thence. But, he was but Earle. 

FIT. I know not that, Sir. But Thomas of Woodftocke, 
I'm fure, was Duke, and he was made away, 
At Calice ; as Duke Humphrey was at Bury : 10 

And Richard the third, you know what end he came too. 
MER. By m' faith you are cunning i' the Chronicle, Sir. 
FIT. No, I confeffe I ha't from the Play-bookes, 

51 bounds 1692, f. of] in G 56 th'] thou G 58 have 

't G 60 Or'n] Or'in 1692 Or in 1716, f. 

SD. ACT. . . . ] om. Enter MEERCRAFT and ENGINE. G 
3 \ExitMrs. Fitz. G 6 comma after 'thinke' om. 1692, f. 

12 m'] my W, G 13 have it G 


The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

And thinke they'are more authentique. ING. That's fure, 

MER. What fay you (to this then) 

He whifpers him of a place. 
FIT. No, a noble houfe. 15 
Pretends to that. I will doe no man wrong. 

MER. Then take one propofition more, and heare it 
As paft exception. FIT. What's that? MER. To be 
Duke of thofe lands, you mail recouer ; take 
Your title, thence, Sir, Duke of the Drown'd lands, 20 
Or Drown' d-land. FIT. Ha ? that laft has a good found ! 
I like it well. The Duke of Drown' d-land? ING. Yes; 
It goes like Groen-land, Sir, if you marke it. MER. I, 
And drawing thus your honour from the worke, 
You make the reputation of that, greater; 25 

And flay't the longer i' your name. FIT. 'Tis true. 
Drown d-lands will Hue in Drown 'd-land '! MER. Yes, 

when you 

Ha' no foote left; as that muft be, Sir, one day. 
And, though it tarry in your heyres, some forty, 
Fifty defcents, the longer liuer, at laft, yet, 30 

Muft thruft 'hem out on't : if no quirk in law, 
Or odde Vice o' their owne not do'it firft. 
Wee fee thofe changes, daily : the f aire lands, 
That were the Clyents, are the Lawyers, now : 
And thofe rich Manners, there, of good man Taylors, 35 
Had once more wood vpon 'hem, then the yard, 
By which th' were meafur'd out for the laft purchafe. [121] 
Nature hath thefe viciffitudes. Shee makes 
No man a ftate of perpetuety, Sir. 

FIT. Yo' are i' the right. Let's in then, and conclude. 40 

Hee fpies Diuell. 
I my fight, againe? I'll talke with you, anon. 

14, 18 's] is W, G 15 SN.] {whispers him.} G 15 period 

after 'house' om. 1716, f. 26 't] it G 32 do't 1641 

37 th'] they G 40 You're 1716, W SN.] Re-enter PUG. G 

41 {Exeunt Fitz. Meer. and Engine. G I] I' 1716, W In G 

Sc. v] The Diuell is an Asse 45 


SVre hee will geld mee, if I stay : or worfe, 
Pluck out my tongue, one o' the two. This Foole, 
There is no trufting of him : and to quit him, 
Were a contempt againfl my Chief 'e, paft pardon. 
It was a Ihrewd difheartning this, at firft ! 5 

Who would ha' thought a woman fo well harnefs'd, 
Or rather well-caparifon'd, indeed, 
That weares fuch petticoates, and lace to her fmocks, 
Broad feaming laces (as I fee 'hem hang there) 
And garters which are loft, if fhee can fhew 'hem, 10 

Could ha' done this ? Hell \ why is fhee fo braue ? 
It cannot be to pleafe Duke Dottrel, fure, 
Nor the dull pictures, in her gallery, 
Nor her owne deare reflection, in her glaffe ; 
Yet that may be: I haue knowne many of 'hem, 15 

Beginne their pleafure, but none end it, there: 
(That I confider, as I goe a long with it) 
They may, for want of better company, 
Or that they thinke the better, fpend an houre ; 
Two, three, or foure, difcourling with their fhaddow: 20 
But fure they haue a farther fpeculation. 
No woman dreft with fo much care, and ftudy, 
Doth dreffe her felfe in vaine. I'll vexe this probleme, 
A little more, before I leaue it, fure. 

SD. om. G 5 disheartening G 9 () ret. G 17 ( ) 

ret. G 24 [Exit. G 

46 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 




THis was a fortune, happy aboue thought, t 122 ] 

That this fhould proue thy chamber : which I f ear'd 
Would be my greateft trouble ! this muft be 
The very window, and that the roome. MAN. It is. 
I now remember, I haue often feene there 5 

A woman, but I neuer mark'd her much. 

WIT. Where was your foule, friend? MAN. Faith, 

but now, and then, 

Awake vnto thofe obiefts. WIT. You pretend fo. 
Let mee not Hue, if I am not in loue 

More with her wit, for this direction, now, 10 

Then with her forme, though I ha' prais'd that prettily, 
Since I faw her, and you, to day. Read thofe. 

Hee giues him a paper, -wherein is the copy of a Song. 
They'll goe vnto the ayre you loue fo well. 
Try 'hem vnto the note, may be the mufique 
Will call her fooner; light, fhee's here. Sing quickly. 15 

M rs . FIT. Either he vnderftood him not : or elfe, 
The fellow was not faithfull in deliuery, 
Of what I bad. And, I am iuftly pay'd, 
That might haue made my profit of his feruice, 
But, by mif-taking, haue drawne on his enuy, 20 

And done the worfe defeate vpon my felfe. 

Manly fings, Pug enters perceives it. 

SD. ACT . . . ] om. SCENE II. Manly's Chambers in Lincoln's Inn, 
opposite Fitzdottrel's House. Enter WITTIPOL and MANLY. G 
12 SN.] {Gives him the copy of a song. G 15 Mrs. FITZDOTTREL 

appears at a window of her house fronting that of Manly's Chambers. G 
21 worst W SN. enters} enters and 1716, W Manly . . . ] Manly 
sings. Enter PUG behind. G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 47 

How ! Mufique ? then he may be there : and is sure. 

PVG. O ! Is it fo ? Is there the enter-view ? 
Haue I drawne to you, at laft, my cunning Lady ? 
The Diuell is an Affe\ fool'd off! and beaten! 25 

Nay, made an instrument ! and could not fent it ! 
Well, lince yo' haue fhowne the malice of a woman, 
No leffe then her true wit, and learning, Miftreffe, 
I'll try, if little Pug haue the malignity 
To recompence it, and fo faue his danger. 30 

'Tis not the paine, but the difcredite of it, 
The Diuell mould not keepe a body intire. 

WIT. Away, fall backe, me comes. MAN. I'll leaue 

you, 'Sir, 
The Mafter of my chamber. I haue bufmeffe. 

WIT. M rs ! M rs . Fi. You make me paint, S r . WIT. 
The'are faire colours, 35 

Lady, and naturall! I did receiue 

Some commands from you, lately, gentle Lady, [ I2 3] 

This Scene is afled at two windo's as out of two con 
tiguous buildings, 

But fo perplex'd, and wrap'd in the deliuery, 
As I may f eare t'haue mif-interpreted : 
But muft make fuit flill, to be neere your grace. 40 

M 18 . Fi. Who is there with you, S r ? WIT. None, but 

my felfe. 

It falls out, Lady, to be a deare friends lodging. 
Wherein there's fome confpiracy of fortune 
With your poore feruants blefl affections. 

M rs . Fi. Who was it fung? WIT. He, Lady, but hee's 
gone, 45 

Vpon my entreaty of him, feeing you 
Approach the window. Neither need you doubt him, 

23 interview W, G 24 least W 27 you've 1716, W 

32 entire W, G [Aside and exit. G 33 I'll] I W, G 

34 [Exit. G 35 M rs !] Mis ! 1641 the rest as in 2.2.41 They're 

1716, W they are G Mrs. Fitz. [advances to the window.] G 
35, 36 The'are . . . receiue] one line 1692, 1716, W 37 SN. 

om. G 39 t'] to 1692, f. 

48 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

If he were here. He is too much a gentleman. 

M rs . Fi. Sir, if you iudge me by this fimple aftion, 
And by the outward habite, and complexion 50 

Of eafmeffe, it hath, to your defigne ; 
You may with luftice, fay, I am a woman : 
And a ftrange woman. But when you ihall pleafe, 
To bring but that concurrence of my fortune, 
To memory, which to day your felfe did vrge: 55 

It may beget fome fauour like excufe, 
Though none like reafon. WIT. No, my tune-full Mif- 


Then, furely, Loue hath none : nor Beauty any ; 
Nor Nature violenced, in both thefe : 

With all whofe gentle tongues you fpeake, at once. 60 

I thought I had inough remou'd, already, 
That fcruple from your breft, and left yo' all reafon ; 
When, through my mornings perfpe&iue I Ihewd you 
A man fo aboue excufe, as he is the caufe, 
Why any thing is to be done vpon him : 65 

And nothing call'd an iniury, mif-plac'd. 
I'rather, now had hope, to mew you how Loue 
By his acceffes, growes more naturall: 
And, what was done, this morning, with fuch force 
Was but deuis'd to ferue the prefent, then. 70 

That fince Loue hath the honour to approach 

He grows more familiar in his Court-jhip. 
Thefe fifler-fwelling brefls ; and touch this foft, 
And rofie hand; hee hath the skill to draw 
Their NeRar forth, with kiffing; and could make 
More wanton falts, from this braue promontory, 75 

Downe to this valley, then the nimble Roe; 

playes with her paps, kiffeth her hands, &c. 
Could play the hopping Sparrow, 'bout thefe nets ; 
And fporting Squirell in thefe crifped groues ; 
Bury himfelfe in euery Sllke-wormes kell, 
Is here vnrauell'd ; runne into the fnare, 80 

62 y'all 1716, W 64 he's W, G 71, 76 SN. om. G 

75 'salts 1692 'saults 1716 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 49 

Which euery hayre is, call into a curie, 

To catch a Cupid flying : Bath himself e 

In milke, and rofes, here, and dry him, there ; 

Warme his cold hands, to play with this fmooth, 

round, [ I2 4] 

And well torn'd chin, as with the Billy ard ball; 85 

Rowle on thefe lips, the banks of loue, and there 
At once both plant, and gather kiffes. Lady, 
Shall I, with what I haue made to day here, call 
All fenfe to wonder, and all faith to figne 
The myfleries reuealed in your forme? 90 

And will Lone pardon mee the blasphemy 
I vtter'd, when I faid, a glaffe could fpeake 
This beauty, or that fooles had power to iudge it? 

Doe but looke, on her eyes \ They doe light 

All that Loue's world comprizethl 95 

Doe but looke on her hayre ! it is bright, 

As Loue's flarre, when it rifeth ! 
Doe but marke, her fore-head's fmoother, 

Then words that footh her \ 
And from her arched browes, fuch a grace 100 

Sheds it felfe through the face ; 
As alone, there triumphs to the life, 

All the gaine, all the good, of the elements ftrife ! 

Haue you feene but a bright Lilly grow, 

Before rude hands haue touch' d it? 105 

Haue you mark'd but the fall of the Snow, 

Before the foyle hath fmuch'd it? 
Haue you felt the wooll o' the Beuer? 

Or Swans downe, euer ? 
Or, haue fmelt o' the bud o' the Bryer? no 

Or the Nard i' the fire? 
Or, haue tafted the bag o' the Bee? 

O, fo white ! O, fo foft ! O, fo fweet is jliee \ 

81 is, cast] is cast 1716, W 88 I've W 98 head's] head 

1641 100 a om. 1641 106 of the] the 1641 108, 

112 o'] of W 108 Beuer] beaver W, G no smelt o' ret. G 

The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 



Her hufband appeares at her back. 

IS shee fo, Sir ? and, I will keepe her fo. 
If I know how, or can : that wit of man 
Will doe't, I'll goe no farther. At this windo' 
She fhall no more be bus'd at. Take your leaue on't. 
If you be fweet meates, wedlock, or fweet flefli, 5 

All's one : I doe not loue this hum about you. 
A flye-blowne wife is not fo proper, In: [ J 25] 

For you, S r , looke to heare from mee. 

Hee fpeakes out of his wiues window. 
WIT. So, I doe, Sir. 

FIT. No, but in other termes. There's no man offers 
This to my wife, but paies f or't. WIT. That haue I, Sir. 
FIT. Nay, then, I tell you, you are. WIT. What am I, 
Sir? ii 

FIT. Why, that I'll thinke on, when I ha' cut your throat. 
WIT. Goe, you are an Affe. FIT. I am refolu'd on't, 


WIT. I thinke you are. FIT. To call you to a reckon 

WIT. Away, you brokers blocke, you property. 15 

FIT. Slight, if you ftrike me, I'll flrike your Miftreffe, 

Hee flrikes his wife. 

WIT. O ! I could fhoote mine eyes at him, for that, now ; 
Or leaue my teeth in'him, were they cuckolds bane, 
Inough to kill him. What prodigious, 
Blinde, and moft wicked change of fortune's this ? 20 

SD. om. SN.] FITZDOTTREL appears at his Wife's back. G 
8 SN. om. G you,] you, you, W, G n are.] are W, G 

13 Sir.] Sir Ed. 16 I will W, G 16 SN.] [ Strikes Mrs. Fitz. 

and leads her out. G 17 my 1641 

Sc. vn] The Diuell is an Asse 51 

I ha' no ayre of patience : all my vaines 
Swell, and my finewes Hart at iniquity of it. 
I mail breake, breake. 

The Diuell fpeakes below. 
PVG. This for the malice of it, 

And my reuenge may paffe ! But, now, my confcience 
Tells mee, I haue profited the caufe of Hell 25 

But little, in the breaking-off their loues. 
Which, if some other a6l of mine repaire not, 
I mail heare ill of in my accompt. 

Fitz-dottrel enters with his wife as come downe. 

FIT. O, Bird ! 

Could you do this ? 'gainft me ? and at this time, now ? 
When I was fo imploy'd, wholly for you, 30 

Drown'd i' my care (more, then the land, I fweare, 
I 'haue hope to win) to make you peere-leffe? ftudying, 
For footemen for you, fine pac'd huifhers, pages, 
To ferue you o' the knee; with what Knights wife, 
To beare your traine, and fit with your foure women 35 
In councell, and receiue intelligences, 
From f orraigne parts, to drefTe you at all pieces ! 
Y'haue (a'moft) turn'd my good affetion, to you; 
Sowr'd my fweet thoughts ; all my pure purpofes : 
I could now finde (i' my very heart) to make 40 

Another, Lady Dutcheffe ; and depofe you. 
Well, goe your waies in. Diuell, you haue redeem'd all. 
I doe forgiue you. And I'll doe you good. 

22 th'iniquity G 23 SN. om [Exit. SCENE III. Another Room 

in Fitzdottrel's House. Enter PUG. G 28 in om. 1641 SN.] 

Enter FITZDOTTREL and his wife. G 30 employ'd 1716, f. 

31, 32 () ret. G 38 You've 1716, f. almost W, G 

42 [Exit Mrs. Fitz.} G 43 [Exit Pug. G 

The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 



WHy ha you thefe excurfions? where ha' you beene, 
Sir? [126] 

FIT. Where I ha' beene vex'd a little, with a toy ! 

MER. O Sir ! no toyes mull trouble your graue head, 
Now it is growing to be great. You muft 
Be aboue all thofe things. FIT. Nay, nay, fo I will. 5 

MER. Now you are to'ard the Lord, you muft put off 
The man, Sir. ING. He faies true. MER. You muft do 


As you ha' done it heretofore ; not know, 
Or falute any man. ING. That was your bed-fellow, 
The other moneth. MER. The other moneth ? the weeke. 10 
Thou doft not know the priueledges, Ingine, 
Follow that Title ; nor how fwif t : To day, 
When he has put on his Lords face once, then 

FIT. Sir, for thefe things I fhall doe well enough, 
There is no feare of me. But then, my wife is 15 

Such an vntoward thing ! fhee'll neuer learne 
How to comport with it. I am out of all 
Conceipt, on her behalfe. MER. Beft haue her taught, Sir. 

FIT. Where? Are there any Schooles for Ladies'? Is 


An Academy for women? I doe know, 20 

For men, there was : I learn'd in it, my felf e, 
To make my legges, and doe my poftures. ING. Sir. 
Doe you remember the conceipt you had 
O' the Spanifh gowne, at home? 

Ingine ivhifpers Merecraft, Merecraft turnes to Fitz-dottrel. 

SD. ACT. . . . ] om. Enter MEERCRAFT and ENGINE. G II] III 
1641 6, 7 Now . . . Sir.] "Now . . . sir." W 24 SN.] 

[whispers Meercraft.~\ G 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 53 

MER. Ha ! I doe thanke thee, 

With all my heart, deare Ingine. Sir, there is 25 

A certaine Lady, here about the Towne, 
An Englifli widdow, who hath lately trauell'd, 
But fhee's call'd the Spaniard ; caufe fhe came 
Lateft from thence : and keepes the SpaniJJi habit. 
Such a rare woman ! all our women heere, 30 

That are of fpirit, and fafhion flocke, vnto her, 
As to their Prefident ; their Law ; their Canon ; 
More then they euer did, to Oracle-Foreman. 
Such rare receipts fhee has, Sir, for the face ; 
Such oyles; such tinffiures; such pomatumn's] 35 

Such perfumes', med'cines', qidnteffences, &c. 
And fuch a MiftrefTe of behauiour; [ I2 7] 

She knowes, from the Dukes daughter, to the Doxey, 
What is their due iuft : and no more ! FIT. O Sir ! 
You pleafe me i' this, more then mine owne greatneffe. 40 
Where is fhee ? Let vs haue her. MER. By your patience, 
We mufl vfe meanes ; caft how to be acquainted 

FIT. Good, S r , about it. MER. We muft think how, 

firft. FIT. O ! 

I doe not loue to tarry for a thing, 

When I haue a mind to't. You doe not know me. 45 

If you doe offer it. MER. Your wife muft fend 
Some pretty token to her, with a complement, 
And pray to be receiu'd in her good graces, 
All the great Ladies do't. FIT. She mail, fhe ihall, 
What were it beft to be? MER. Some little toy, 50 

I would not haue it any great matter, Sir : 
A Diamant ring, of forty or fifty pound, 
Would doe it handfomely : and be a gift 
Fit for your wife to fend, and her to take. 

FIT. I'll goe, and tell my wife on't, flreight. 55 

Fitz-dottrel goes out. 

28 she is W, G 29 and om. 1641 31 fashion flocke,] 

fashion, flock 1692, f. 36 &c.] et caetera ; G 45 to it G 

49 do it G 52 Diamond 1692, 1716 diamond W, G passim 

55 SN.] [Exit. G 

54 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

MER. Why this 
Is well! The clothes we'haue now: But, where's this 


If we could get a witty boy, now, Ingine ; 
That were an excellent cracke : I could inftru6l him, 
To the true height. For any thing takes this dottrel. 

ING. Why, Sir your beft will be one o' the players ! 60 

MER. No, there's no trufting them. They'll talke on't, 
And tell their Poets. ING. What if they doe? The ieft 
will brooke the Stage. But, there be fome of 'hem 
Are very honeft Lads. There's Dicke Robinfon 
A very pretty fellow, and comes often 65 

To a Gentlemans chamber, a friends of mine. We had 
The merrieft fupper of it there, one night, 
The Gentlemans Land-lady invited him 
To'a Goffips feaft. Now, he Sir brought Dick Robinfon, 
Dreft like a Lawyers wife, amongft 'hem all ; 70 

(I lent him cloathes) but, to fee him behaue it; 
And lay the law ; and carue ; and drinke vnto 'hem ; 
And then talke baudy : and fend f rolicks ! o ! 
It would haue burfl your buttons, or not left you 
A feame. MER. They fay hee's an ingenious youth ! 75 

ING. O Sir ! and dreffes himfelf e, the beft ! beyond 
Forty o' your very Ladies ! did you ne'r fee him ? 

MER. No, I do feldome fee thofe toyes. But thinke you, 
That we may haue him? ING. Sir, the young Gentleman 
I tell you of, can command him. Shall I attempt it? 80 

MER. Yes, doe it. 

Enters againe. 

FIT. S'light, I cannot get my wife 
To part with a ring, on any termes : and yet, 
The follen Monkey has two. MER. It were 'gainst reafon 
That you fhould vrge it; Sir, fend to a Gold-fmith, [128] 

61 of it G 64 Dick 1692, 1716 Dick W Dickey G 

66 friend W, G 69 T'a 1716, W 81 SN. . . . ] Fit. . . . 

1716 Fitz-dottrel . . . W Re-enter FITZDOTTREL. G 83 sullen 

1692, f. 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 55 

Let not her lofe by't. FIT. How do's flie lofe by't? 85 
Is't not for her? MER. Make it your owne bounty, 
It will ha' the better fucceffe ; what is a matter 
Of fifty pound to you, S r . FIT. I'haue but a hundred 
Pieces, to fhew here; that I would not breake 

MER. You fhall ha' credit, Sir. I'll fend a ticket 90 
Vnto my Gold-fmith. Heer, my man comes too, 
To carry it fitly. How now, Traines ? What birds ? 

Traines enters. 

TRA. Your Coufin Euer-ill met me, and has beat mee, 
Becaufe I would not tell him where you were : 
I thinke he has dogd me to the houfe too. FIT. Well 95 
You mail goe out at the back-doore, then, Traines, 
You mufl get Guilt-head hither, by fome meanes: 

TRA. 'Tis impofiible ! FIT. Tell him, we haue venifon, 
I'll g' him a piece, and fend his wife a Phefant. 

TRA. A For reft moues not, till that forty pound, 100 
Yo' had of him, lail, be pai'd. He keepes more ftirre, 
For that fame petty fumme, then for your bond 
Of fixe ; and Statute of eight hundred ! FIT. Tell him 
Wee'll hedge in that. Cry vp Fits-dottrell to him, 
Double his price : Make him a man of mettall. 105 

TRA. That will not need, his bond is current inough. 

85, 6 't] it G 92 SN.] Enter TRAINS. G 95, 103 FIT.] 

Meer. W, G 98 'T] It G 99 gi' 1716, W give G 

\Exit. G 106 [Exeunt. G 

56 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 



A LI this is to make you a Gentleman : 
I'll haue you learne, Sonne. Wherefore haue I 
plac'd you 

With S r . Paul -Either-fide, but to haue fo much Law 
To keepe your owne? Befides, he is a luftice, 
Here i' the Towne ; and dwelling, Sonne, with him, 5 

You Ihal learne that in a yeere, lhall be worth twenty 
Of hauing ftay'd you at Oxford, or at Cambridge, 
Or fending you to the Innes of Court, or France. 
I am call'd for now in hafte, by Matter Meere-craft 
To trufl Mafter Fits-dottrel, a good man : 10 

I'haue inquir'd him, eighteene hundred a yeere, 
(His name is currant) for a diamant ring 
Of forty, lhall not be worth thirty (thats gain'd) 
And this is to make you a Gentleman ! 
PLV. O, but good father, you truft too much! Gvi. 
Boy, boy, 15 

We Hue, by finding fooles out, to be trufled. 
Our fhop-bookes are our paftures, our corn-grounds, 
We lay 'hem op'n for them to come into : 
And when wee haue 'hem there, wee driue 'hem vp 
In t'one of our two Pounds, the Compters, flreight, 20 
And this is to make you a Gentleman ! 
Wee Citizens neuer truft, but wee doe coozen : 
For, if our debtors pay, wee coozen them; 
And if they doe not, then we coozen our felues. 

SD. ACT. ... I. . . . ] ACT. ... I. A Room in Fitzdottrel's House. 
Enter THOMAS GILTHEAD and PLUTARCHUS. G 3 to om. 1692 

t' 1716 Poul] Pould 1641 9 I'm W, G 12 () ret. G 

15 Boy, boy] Boy, by 1692 20 two om. 1692, 1716 Int'one 

1716, W into one G 

Sc. n] The Diiiell is an Asse 57 

But that's a hazard euery one muft runne, 25 

That hopes to make his Sonne a Gentleman! 

PLV. I doe not wifh to be one, truely, Father. 
In a defcent, or two, wee come to be 
luft 'itheir ftate, fit to be coozend, like 'hem. 
And I had rather ha' tarryed i' your trade : 30 

For, fmce the Gentry fcorne the Citty fo much, [JS ] 

Me thinkes we mould in time, holding together, 
And matching in our owne tribes, as they fay, 
Haue got an A51 of Common Councell, for it, 
That we might coozen them out of rerum natura. 35 

Gvi. I, if we had an Aft firft to forbid 
The marrying of our wealthy heyres vnto 'hem : 
And daughters, with fuch lauifh portions. 
That confounds all. PLV. And makes a Mungril breed, 


And when they haue your money, then they laugh at you : 40 
Or kick you downe the flayres. I cannot abide 'hem. 
I would faine haue 'hem coozen'd, but not trailed. 



Ois he come ! I knew he would not f aile me. 
9 Welcome, good Guilt-head, I muft ha' you doe 
A noble Gentleman, a courtefie, here : 
In a mere toy (fome pretty Ring, or lewell) 
Of fifty, or threefcore pound (Make it a hundred, 5 

And hedge in the laft forty, that I owe you, 
And your owne price for the Ring) He's a good man, S r , 
And you may hap' fee him a great one ! Hee, 

29 i' their 1716, W in their G 

SD. ACT. . . . ] Enter MEERCRAFT. G 7 ring. [Aside to Gilt- 


eg The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

Is likely to beftow hundreds, and thoufands, 

Wi' you ; if you can humour him. A great prince 10 

He will be fhortly. What doe you fay? Gvi. In truth, 

I cannot. T has beene a long vacation with vs ? 

FIT. Of what, I pray thee? of wit? or honesty? 
Thofe are your Citizens long vacations. 
PLV. Good Father do not truft 'hem. MER. Nay, Thorn. 

Guilt-head. 15 

Hee will not buy a courtefie and begge it : 
Hee'll rather pay, then pray. If you doe for him, 
You muft doe cheerefully. His credit, Sir, 
Is not yet proftitute! Who's this? thy fonne? 
A pretty youth, what's his name? PLV. Plutarchus, 

Sir, 20 

MER. Plutarchus ! How came that about? Gvi. That 

yeere S r , 

That I begot him, I bought Plutarch's Hues, 
And fell f in loue with the booke, as I call'd my fonne 
By'his name; In hope he mould be like him: 
And write the Hues of our great men! MER. I' the 

City? [131] 25 

And you do breed him, there? Gvi. His minde, Sir, lies 
Much to that way. MER. Why, then, he is i' the right 


Gvi. But, now, I had rather get him a good wife, 
And plant him i' the countrey ; there to vfe 
The bleffmg I mall leaue him : MER. Out vpon't ! 30 
And lofe the laudable meanes, thou haft at home, heere, 
T'aduance, and make him a young Aldermant 
Buy him a Captaines place, for fhame ; and let him 
Into the world, early, and with his plume, 
And Scarfes, march through Cheap fide, or along Cornehill, 
And by the vertue'of thofe, draw downe a wife 36 

There from a windo', worth ten thoufand pound ! 

15 Tom G 20 's] is G 23 so in W, G 27 he's 

W, G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 59 

Get him the pofhure booke, and's leaden men, 

To fet vpon a table, 'gainst his Miftreffe 

Chance to come by, that hee may draw her in, 40 

And mew her Finsbury battells. Gvi. I haue plac'd him 

With Justice Eytherfide, to get so much law 

MER. As thou haft confcience. Come, come, thou dofl 


Pretty Plutarchus, who had not his name, 
For nothing : but was borne to traine the youth 45 

Of London, in the military truth 
That way his Genius lies. My Coufm Euerill \ 



Oare you heere, Sir? 'pray you let vs whifper. 
9 PLV. Father, deare Father, truft him if you loue 

Gvi. Why, I doe meane it, boy ; but, what I doe, 
Muft not come eafily from mee : Wee muft deale 
With Courtiers, boy, as Courtiers deale with vs. 5 

If I haue a Bufmeffe there, with any of them, 
Why, I muft wait, Fam fure on't, Son : and though 
My Lord difpatch me, yet his worfhipfull man 
Will keepe me for his fport, a moneth, or two, 
To mew mee with my fellow Cittizens. 10 

I muft make his traine long, and full, one quarter ; 
And helpe the fpeclacle of his greatneffe. There, 
Nothing is done at once, but iniuries, boy: 

45, 6 to . . . truth] in italics G 47 lies. Enter EVERILL. 

SD. om. G I [takes Meer. aside. G 7 I'm 1716, W I 

am G 

6o The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

And they come head-long! all their good turnes moue 

not, t I2 4] 

Or very ilowly PLV. Yet fweet father, truft him. 15 

Gvi. Well, I will thinke. Ev. Come, you muft do't, 


I'am vndone elfe, and your Lady Tayle-bu/h 
Has fent for mee to dinner, and my cloaths 
Are all at pawne. I had fent out this morning, 
Before I heard you were come to towne, fome twenty 20 
Of my epiftles, and no one returne 

Mere-craft tells him of his faults. 

MER. Why, I ha' told you o' this. This comes of wear 

Scarlet, gold lace, and cut-works ! your fine gartring ! 
With your blowne rof es, Coufin ! and your eating 
Phefant, and Godwit, here in London \ haunting 25 

The Globes, and Mermaides \ wedging in with Lords, 
Still at the table ! and affecting lechery, 
In veluet ! where could you ha' contented your felf e 
With cheefe, falt-butter, and a pickled hering, 
I' the Low-countries ; there worne cloth, and fuilian ! 30 
Beene fatisfied with a leape o' your Hofl's daughter, 
In garrifon, a wench of a ftoter! or, 
Your Sutlers wife, i' the leaguer, of two blanks ! 
You neuer, then, had runne vpon this flat, 
To write your letters miffiue, and fend out 35 

Your priuy feales, that thus haue frighted off 
All your acquaintance ; that they fhun you at diflance, 
Worse, then you do the Bailies ! Ev. Pox vpon you. 
I come not to you for counfell, I lacke money. 

Hee repines, 

MER. You doe not thinke, what you owe me already? 
Ev. I? 40 

They owe you, that meane to pay you. I'll bef worne, 

16 think. [They walk aside. G 17 I'm 1716 I am W 

21 SN. om. G 23 gartering W, G 32 Storer 1716 storer 

W, G 33 Suiters 1641 38 Bayliffs 1716 bailiffs W, G 

39, 43 SN. om. G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 61 

I neuer meant it. Come, you will proie6l, 

I mall vndoe your practice, for this moneth elfe : 

You know mee. 

and threatens him. 

MER. I, yo' are a right fweet nature ! 
Ev. Well, that's all one! MER. You'll leaue this Em 
pire, one day? 45 
You will not euer haue this tribute payd, 
Your fcepter o' the fword? Ev. Tye vp your wit, 
Doe, and prouoke me not MER. Will you, Sir, helpe, 
To what I mall prouoke another for you? 

Ev. I cannot tell ; try me : I thinke I am not 50 

So vtterly, of an ore vn-to-be-melted, 

But I can doe my felfe good, on occafions. 

They ioyne. 

MER. Strike in then, for your part. M r . Fits-dottrel 
If I tranfgreffe in point of manners, afford mee 
Your beft conftruBion ; I muft beg my f reedome 55 

From your affayres, this day. FIT. How, S r . MER. It is 
In fuccour of this Gentlemans occafions, 

My kinf-man 

Mere-craft pretends bufmeffe. 
FIT. You'll not do me that affront, S r . 
MER. I am fory you mould fo interpret it, 
But, Sir, it flands vpon his being inuefted 60 

In a new office, hee has flood for, long: [ J 33] 

Mere-craft describes the office of Dependancy. 
Mafter of the Dependancesl A place 
Of my proie6lion too, Sir, and hath met 
Much oppofition; but the State, now, fee's 
That great neceffity of it, as after all 65 

Their writing, and their fpeaking, againft Duells, 
They haue ere6led it. His booke is drawne 
For, fincc, there will be differences, daily, 
'Twixt Gentlemen ; and that the roaring manner 
Is growne offenfiue ; that thofe few, we call 7 

44 you're 1716, W 52 Enter FITZDOTTREL. SN. om. G 

53 part. [They go up to Fitz.} G 57, 61 SN. om. G 

68 since 1641, f. 

62 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

The ciuill men o' the fword, abhorre the vapours ; 
They fliall refer now, hither, for their proceffe ; 
And fuch as trefpaffe 'gainfl the rule of Court, 
Are to be fin'd FIT. In troth, a pretty place ! 

MER. A kinde of arbitrary Court 'twill be, Sir. 75 

FIT. I fhall haue matter for it, I beleeue, 
Ere it be long : I had a diftaft. MER. But now, Sir, 
My learned councell, they mufl haue a feeling, 
They'll part, Sir, with no bookes, without the hand-gout 
Be oyld, and I mufl furnifh. I ft be money, 80 

To me ftreight. I am Mine, Mint and Exchequer. 
To fupply all. What is't? a hundred pound? 

EVE. No, th' Harpey, now, flands on a hundred pieces. 

MER. Why, he mufl haue 'hem, if he will. To morrow, 

Will equally ferue your occafion's, 85 

And therefore, let me obtaine, that you will yeeld 

To timing a poore Gentlemans diflreffes, 

In termes of hazard. FIT. By no meanes ! MER. I 


Get him this money, and will. FIT. Sir, I protefl, 
I'd rather ftand engag'd for it my felf e : 90 

Then you mould leaue mee. MER. O good S r . do you 


So courfely of our manners, that we would, 
For any need of ours, be preft to take it: 
Though you be pleas'd to offer it. FIT. Why, by heauen, 
I meane it ! MER. I can neuer beleeue leffe. 95 

But wee, Sir, mufl preferue our dignity, 
As you doe publiih yours. By your faire leaue, Sir. 

Hee offers to be gone. 

FIT. As I am a Gentleman, if you doe offer 
To leaue mee now, or if you doe refufe mee, 99 

I will not thinke you loue mee. MER. Sir, I honour you. 
And with iufl reafon, for thefe noble notes, 
Of the nobility, you pretend too! But, Sir 

90 I had G 97 SN. Hee om. G 

Sc. in]'. The Diuell is an Asse 63 

I would know, why? a motiue (he a ft ranger) 
You ihould doe this? (EvE. You'll mar all with your 

FIT. Why, that's all one, if 'twere, Sir, but my fancy. 105 
But I haue a Bufmeffe, that perhaps I'd haue 
Brought to his office. MER. O, Sir ! I haue done, then ; 
If hee can be made profitable, to you. [134] 

FIT. Yes, and it mail be one of my ambitions 
To haue it the firft Bufineffe? May I not? no 

EVE. So you doe meane to make't, a perfect Bufmeffe. 

FIT. Nay, I'll doe that, allure you : mew me once. 

MER. S r , it concernes, the firft be a perfect Bufmeffe, 
For his owne honour! EVE. I, and th' reputation 
Too, of my place. FIT. Why, why doe I take this courfe, 
elfe? 115 

I am not altogether, an Affe, good Gentlemen, 
Wherefore mould I confult you? doe you thinke? 
To make a fong on't? How's your manner? tell vs. 

MER. Doe, fatisfie him : giue him the whole courfe. 

EVE. Firft, by requeft, or otherwife, you offer 120 

Your Bufmeffe to the Court: wherein you craue: 
The Judgement of the Mafter and the Afsiftants. 

FIT. Well, that's done, now, what doe you vpon it? 

EVE. We ftreight S r , haue recourfe to the fpring-head ; 
Vifit the ground ; and, fo difclofe the nature : 125 

If it will carry, or no. If wee doe finde, 
By our proportions it is like to proue 
A fullen, and blacke Bus'neffe That it be 
Incorrigible; and out of, treaty; then, 
We file it, a Dependancel FIT. So 'tis fil'd. 130 

What followes? I doe loue the order of thefe things. 

EVE. We then aduife the party, if he be 
A man of meanes, and hauings, that forth-with, 
He fettle his eftate : if not, at leaft 
That he pretend it. For, by that, the world 135 

103 ( ) ret. G 104 Ever. {Aside to MeerJ] 106 'd] would 

G 114 the W 123 's] is G 127 our] your 1641 

64 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

Takes notice, that it now is a Dependance. 
And this we call, Sir, Publication. 

FIT. Very fufficient ! After Publication, now ? 

EVE. Then we grant out our Proceffe, which is diuers ; 
Eyther by Chartell, Sir, or ore-tenus, 140 

Wherein the Challenger, and Challengee 
Or (with your Spaniard} your Prouocador, 
And Prouocado, haue their feuerall courfes 

FIT. I haue enough on't ! for an hundred pieces ? 
Yes, for two hundred, vnder-write me, doe. 145 

Your man will take my bond ? MER. That he will, fure. 
But, thefe fame Citizens, they are fuch marks! 
There's an old debt of forty, I ga' my word 
For one is runne away, to the Bermudas, 
And he will hooke in that, or he wi' not doe. 150 

He whifpers Fitz-dottrell afide. 

FIT. Why, let him. That and the ring, and a hundred 

Will all but make two hundred? MER. No, no more, 

What ready Arithmetique you haue? doe you heare? 

And then Guilt-head 

A pretty mornings worke for you, this? Do it, 
You mail ha' twenty pound on't. Gvi. Twenty 
pieces? [135] 155 

(PLV. Good Father, do't) MER. You will hooke Ml? 


Shew vs your ring. You could not ha' done this, now 
With gentleneffe, at firft, wee might ha' thank'd you? 
But groane, and ha' your courtefies come from you 
Like a hard iloole, and ftinke? A man may draw 160 

Your teeth out eafier, then your money? Come, 
Were little Guilt-head heere, no better a nature, 
I mould ne'r loue him, that could pull his lips off, now ! 

Hee pulls Plutarchus by the lips. 

148 gave G 149 to] into 1641 150 SN.] [Aside to Fitz. G 

he wi'] he'll G 153 SN.] {Aside to Gilthead. G 159 you] 

vour 1641, f. 163 SN.] [Pulls him by the lips. G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 65 

Was not thy mother a Gentlewoman? PLV. Yes, Sir. 

MER. And went to the Court at Chriftmas, and S*. 
Georges-tide'? 165 

And lent the Lords-men, chaines? PLV. Of gold, and 
pearle, S r . 

MER. I knew, thou muft take, after fome body ! 
Thou could'ft not be elfe. This was no fhop-looke ! 
I'll ha' thee Captaine Guilt-head, and march vp, 
And take in Pitnlico,, and kill the bum, 170 

At euery tauerne! Thou malt haue a wife, 
If f mocks will mount, boy. How now? you ha' there now 
Some Brifto-flone, or Cornifli counterfeit 
You'ld put vpon vs. 

He turnes to old Guilt-head. 
Gvi. No, Sir, I allure you : 

Looke on his lufler ! hee will fpeake himfelfe ! 175 

I'le gi' you leaue to put him i' the Mill, 
H'is no great, large ftone, but a true Paragon, 
H'has all his corners, view him well. MER. H'is yellow. 

Gvi. Vpo' my faith, S r , o' the right black-water, 
And very deepe ! H'is fet without a foyle, too. 180 

Here's one o' the yellow-water, I'll (ell cheape. 

MER. And what do you valew this, at? thirty pound? 

Gvi. No, Sir, he cost me forty, ere he was fet. 

MER. Turnings, you meane? I know your Equiuocks: 
You'are growne the better Fathers of 'hem o' late. 185 
Well, where't muft goe, 'twill be iudg'd, and, therefore, 
Looke you't be right. You mall haue fifty pound for't. 

Now to Fitz-dottrel. 

Not a deneer more ! And, becaufe you would 
Haue things difpatch'd, Sir, I'll goe prefently, 
Inquire out this Lady. If you thinke good, Sir. 190 

165 George- G 166 Lords-] lords W lords' G 

173 Bristol stone W, G 174 SN. He, old om. G 177 He 

isW, G i78HehasW,G 178, 180 He's W, G 

184 equivokes W, G 185 You're 1716, W You are G 'hem] 

'em G o' ret. G 186 where it G 187 SN.] [To Fitz.] G 

188 deneer 1641 Denier 1716 denier W, G 

66 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

Hauing an hundred pieces ready, you may 

Part with thofe, now, to ferue my kinfmans turnes, 

That he may wait vpon you, anon, the freer ; 

And take 'hem when you ha' feal'd, a gaine, of Guilt-head. 

FIT. I care not if I do ! MER. And difpatch all, 195 
Together. FIT. There, th'are iuft: a hundred pieces! 
I' ha' told 'hem ouer, twice a day, thefe two moneths. 

Hee turnes 'hem out together. And Euerill and hee fall 

to /hare. 

MER. Well, go, and feale, then, S r , make your returne 
As fpeedy as you can. EVE. Come gi' mee. MER. Soft, 


EVE. Mary, and f aire too, then. I'll no delaying, Sir. 200 
MER. But, you will heare? Ev. Yes, when I haue my 


MER. Theres forty pieces for you. EVE. What is this 

for? [136] 

MER. Your halfe. You know, that Guilt-head muft ha' 


EVE. And what's your ring there ? mail I ha' none o' that ? 
MER. O, thats to be giuen to a Lady\ 205 

EVE. Is't fo? MER. By that good light, it is. Ev. 

Come, gi' me 

Ten pieces more, then. MER. Why? Ev. For Guilt- 
head ? Sir, 
Do'you thinke, I'll 'low him any fuch mare: MER. You 


EVE. Muft I ? Doe you your mufts, Sir, I'll doe mine, 
You wi' not part with the whole, Sir? Will you? Goe 
too. 21 o 

Gi' me ten pieces ! MER. By what law, doe you this ? 
EVE. E'n Lyon-law, Sir, I muft roare elf e. MER. Good ! 

196 they're just a 1716, W they are just a G 197 SN.] [Turns 

them out on the table. G 199 can. [Exeunt Fitzdottrel, Gilt head, 

and Plutarchus.] me. [They fall to sharing. G 201 Dividend 

1716 dividend W, G 204 o' ret. G 205 that is G 

206 Is it W, G 208 allow 1692, f. 209 you om. 1692, 

1716, W 212 E'n] Even G 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 67 

EVE. Yo' haue heard, how th' Affe made his diuifions, 

wifely ? 
MER. And, I am he: I thanke you. Ev. Much good 

do you, S r . 

MER. I mail be rid o' this tyranny, one day ? EVE. Not, 
While you doe eate; and lie, about the towne, here; 216 
And coozen i' your bullions ; and I ftand 
Your name of credit, and compound your bufineffe ; 
Adiourne your beatings euery terme ; and make 
New parties for your proieSls. I haue, now, 220 

A pretty tafque, of it, to hold you in 
Wi' your Lady Tayle-bu/li : but the toy will be, 
How we mall both come off? MER. Leaue you your 


And doe your portion, what's affign'd you : I 
Neuer fail'd yet. EVE. With reference to your aydes ? 225 
You'll ftill be vnthankfull. Where lhall I meete you, 


You ha' fome feate to doe alone, now, I fee; 
You wifh me gone, well, I will finde you out, 
And bring you after to the audit. MER. S'light ! 
There's Ingines lhare too, I had forgot ! This raigne 230 
Is too-too-vnfuportable ! I muft 
Quit my felfe of this vaffalage! Ingine\ welcome. 

213 You've 1716, W 218 your om. 1641 223 you om. 1641 

227 to doe] to be done 1641 229 audit. [Exit. G 

232 vassalage ! Enter ENGINE, followed by WITTIPOL. G 

68 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx m 



HOw goes the cry? ING. Excellent well! MER. 
Wil't do? 

Where's Robinfon? ING. Here is the Gentleman, Sir. 
Will vndertake t'himfelfe. I haue acquainted him, 

MER. Why did you fo ? ING. Why, Robinfon would 

ha' told him, 

You know. And hee's a pleafant wit ! will hurt 5 

Nothing you purpofe. Then, he'is of opinion, 
That Robinfon might want audacity, [ 129] 

She being fuch a gallant. Now, hee has beene, 
In Spaine, and knowes the f afhions there ; and can 
Difcourfe; and being but mirth (hee faies) leaue much, 10 
To his care : MER. But he is too tall ! 

He excepts at his ftature. 
ING. For that, 

He has the braueil deuice ! (you'll loue him for't) 
To fay, he weares Cioppinos : and they doe fo 
In Spaine. And Robinfon's as tall, as hee. 

MER. Is he fo? ING. Euery iot. MER. Nay, I had 
rather 15 

To truft a Gentleman with it, o' the two. 

ING. Pray you goe to him, then, Sir, and falute him. 
MER. Sir, my friend Ingine has acquainted you 
With a ftrange bufmeffe, here. WIT. A merry one, Sir. 
The Duke of Drown' d-land, and his Dutcheffe? MER. 
Yes, Sir. 20 

Now, that the Coniurers ha' laid him by, 
I ha' made bold, to borrow him a while ; 

SD. om. G I 't] it G 3 t'] 't 1716, W it G 
6 he's 1692, f. 7 want] have 1641 n SN. om. G 
12 () ret. G 17 you to go 1716, W 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 69 

WIT. With purpofe, yet, to put him out I hope 
To his beft vfe? MER. Yes, Sir. WIT. For that fmall 


That I am trufted with, put off your care: 25 

I would not lofe to doe it, for the mirth, 
Will follow of it ; and well, I haue a fancy. 

MER. Sir, that will make it well. WIT. You will 

report it fo. 

Where muft I haue my dreffing? ING. At my houfe, 

MER. You fhall haue caution, Sir, for what he yeelds, 30 
To fix pence. WIT. You fhall pardon me. I will fliare, 


I' your fports, onely : nothing i' your purchafe. 
But you muft furnifh mee with complements, 
To th' manner of Spaine ; my coach, my guarda duenrias ; 

MER. Ingine's your Pro'uedor. But, Sir, I muft 35 
(Now I'haue entred truft wi' you, thus farre) 
Secure ftill i' your quality, acquaint you 
With fomewhat, beyond this. The place, defign'd 
To be the Scene, for this our mery matter, 
Becaufe it muft haue countenance of women, 40 

To draw difcourse, and offer it, is here by, 
At the Lady Taile-bu/hes. WIT. I know her, Sir. 
And her Gentleman hui flier. MER. W Ambler 1 WIT. 
Yes, Sir. 

MER. Sir, It mail be no fhame to mee, to confeffe 
To you, that wee poore Gentlemen, that want acres, 45 
Muft for our needs, turne fooles vp, and plough Ladies 
Sometimes, to try what glebe they are: and this 
Is no vnfruitefull piece. She, and I now, 
Are on a proiecT;, for the fad, and venting 
Of a new kinde of fucus (paint, for Ladies) 50 

To ferue the kingdome: wherein fhee her felfe 
Hath trauell'd, fpecially, by way of feruice 

35 Provedore 1716 provedore W provedore G 43 Usher 1716 

usher W, G 47 Sometime 1692, 1716, W 

7o The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

Vnto her fexe, and hopes to get the Monopoly, 

As the reward of her inuention. [!38] 

WIT. What is her end, in this? Ev. Merely 
ambition, 55 

Sir, to grow great, and court it with the fecret : 
Though fhee pretend fome other. For, me's dealing, 
Already, vpon caution for the fhares, 
And M r . Ambler, is hee nam'd Examiner 
For the ingredients ; and the Register 60 

Of what is vented ; and fhall keepe the Office. 
Now, if fhee breake with you, of this (as I 
Muft make the leading thred to your acquaintance, 
That, how experience gotten i' your being 
Abroad, will helpe our bufmesse) thinke of fome 65 

Pretty additions, but to keep her floting: 
It may be, fhee will offer you a part, 

Any ftrange names of WIT. S r , I haue my'inftrucTions. 
Is it not high time to be making ready? 

MER. Yes, Sir, ING. The foole's in fight, Dottrel. 
MER. Away, then. 70 



REturn'd fo foone? FIT. Yes, here's the ring: I ha' 

But there's not fo much gold in all the row, he faies 
Till't come fro' the Mint. 'Tis tane vp for the gameflers. 
MER. There's a fhop-fhift! plague on 'hem. FIT. He 

do's fweare it. 
MER. He'll fweare, and forfweare too, it is his trade, 5 

55 Ev.] Meer. 1716, f. 59 i s hee] he is W, G 62, 65 ( ) 

ret - G 70 [Exeunt Engine and Wittipol. G 

SD. ACT. . . .] Re-enter FITZDOTTREL. G 3 Till it G from G 

Sc. v] The Diuell is an Asse 71 

You mould not haue left him. FIT. S'lid, I can goe backe, 
And beat him, yet. MER. No, now let him alone. 

FIT. I was fo earneft, after the maine Bufineffe, 
To haue this ring, gone. MER. True, and 'tis time. 
I'haue learned, Sir, fin' you went, her Ladi-fhip eats 10 
With the Lady Tail-bufli, here, hard by. FIT. I' the lane 

MER. Yes, if you'had a feruant, now of prefence, 
Well cloth'd, and of an aery voluble tongue, 
Neither too bigge, or little for his mouth, 
That could deliuer your wiues complement; 15 

To fend along withall. FIT. I haue one Sir, 
A very handfome, gentleman-like-fellow, 
That I doe meane to make my Dutcheffe Vfher 
I entertain'd him, but this morning, too : 
I'll call him to you. The worfl of him, is his name ! 20 

MER. She'll take no note of that, but of his meffage. [139] 

Hee JJiewes him his Pug. 

FIT. Diuell ! How like you him, Sir. Pace, go a little. 
Let's fee you moue. MER. He'll ferue, S r , giue it him : 
And let him goe along with mee, I'll helpe 
To prefent him, and it. FIT. Looke, you doe firah, 25 
Difcharge this well, as you expect; your place. 
Do'you heare, goe on, come off with all your honours. 

dues him inftruElions. 
I would faine fee him, do it. MER. Truft him, with it; 

FIT. Remember kiffmg of your hand, and anfwering 
With the French-time, in flexure of your body. 30 

I could now fo inftrucl him and for his words 

MER. I'll put them in his mouth. FIT. O, but I haue 


O' the very Academies. MER. Sir, you'll haue vfe for 

8 comma after ' earnest' om. 1716, f. 9 it is W, G 

10 since G 14 or] nor W, G 21, 27, 35 SN. om. G 

22 Devil ! Enter PUG. G 27 Do'you] D'you 1692, 1716, W 

30 in] and W, G 31 now] not 1641 

>j2 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT m 

Anon, your felfe, I warrant you : after dinner, 
When you are call'd. FIT. S'light, that'll be iuft play 
time. 35 

He longs to fee the play. 

It cannot be, I muft not lofe the play ! 

MER. Sir, but you muft, if me appoint to fit. 
And, fhee's prefident. FIT. S'lid, it is the Diuell. 

Becaufe it is the Diuell. 

MER. And, 'twere his Damme too, you muft now apply 
Your felfe, Sir, to this, wholly ; or lofe all. 40 

FIT. If I could but fee a piece MER. S r . Neuer 
think on't. 

FIT. Come but to one al, and I did not care 
But to be feene to rife, and goe away, 
To vex the Players, and to punilh their Poet 
Keepe him in awe ! MER. But fay, that he be one, 45 
Wi' not be aw'd ! but laugh at you. How then? 

FIT. Then he mall pay for'his dinner himfelfe. MER. 


He would doe that twice, rather then thanke you. 
Come, get the Diuell out of your head, my Lord, 
(I'll call you fo in priuate ftill) and take 50 

Your Lord-fhip i' your minde. You were, fweete Lord, 

He puts him in mind of his quarrell. 
In talke to bring a Bufmeffe to the Office. FIT. Yes. 

MER. Why fhould not you, S r , carry it o' your felfe, 
Before the Office be vp? and mew the world, 
You had no need of any mans direction ; 55 

In point, Sir, of fufficiency. I fpeake 
Againft a kinfman, but as one that tenders 
Your graces good. FIT. I thanke you ; to proceed 

MER. To Publications : ha' your Deed drawne prefently. 
And leaue a blancke to put in your Feoffees 60 

One, two, or more, as you fee caufe FIT. I thank you 
Heartily, I doe thanke you. Not a word more, 

38 she is W, G 39 And,] An G 38, 51 SN. om. G 

47 Then] That 1692, 1716 for's 1692, f. 50 () ret. G 

53o']onG 59 publication G 60 leave me a 1692, 1716, W 

Sc. v] The Diuell is an Asse 73 

I pray you, as you loue mee. Let mee alone. 
That I could not thinke o' this, as well, as hee? 
O, I could beat my infinite blocke-head ! 65 

He is angry with himfelfe. 
MER. Come, we muft this way. PVG. How far is't. 

MER. Hard by here 

Ouer the way. Now, to atchieue this ring, 
From this fame fellow, that is to aflure it; [ J 4o] 

He thinkes how to coozen the bearer, of the ring. 
Before hee giue it. Though my Spani/h Lady, 
Be a young Gentleman of meanes, and fcorne 70 

To mare, as hee doth fay, I doe not know 
How fuch a toy may tempt his Lady-fliip : 
And therefore, I thinke beft, it be afTur'd. 

PVG. Sir, be the Ladies braue, wee goe vnto? 
MER. O, yes. PVG. And mall I fee 'hem, and fpeake 
to 'hem? 75 

MER. What elfe? ha' you your falfe-beard about you? 


Queftions his man. 

TRA. Yes*,' MER. And is this one of your double 

Cloakes ? 
TRA. The beft of 'hem. MER. Be ready then. Sweet 

Pit fall I 

65 SN.] [Exeunt. SCENE II. The Lane near the Lady Tailbush's 
House. Enter MEERCRAFT followed by PUG. G 67 way. [They 

cross over.] G 68 SN. om. G is] is, W, G 73 [Aside. G 

76 else? Enter TRAINS. SN. om. G 78 then. [Exeunt. 

SCENE III. A Hall in Lady Tailbush's House. Enter MEERCRAFT and 
PUG, met by PITFALL. G 

74 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT m 



COme, I muft buffe 
Offers to kiffe. 

PIT. Away. MER. I'll fet thee vp again. 
Neuer f eare that : canfb thou get ne'r a bird ? 
No Thru flies hungry? Stay, till cold weather come, 
I'll help thee to an Oufell, or, a Field-fare. 
Who's within, with Madame ? PIT. I'll tell you straight. 5 

She runs in, in hafle: he followes. 
MER. Pleafe you flay here, a while Sir, I'le goe in. 
PVG. I doe fo long to haue a little venery, 
While I am in this body ! I would taft 
Of euery fmne, a little, if it might be 

After the maner of man ! Sweet-heart ! PIT. What would 
you, S r ? 10 

Pug leaps at Pitfall's camming in. 

PVG. Nothing but fall in, to you, be your Black-bird, 
My pretty pit (as the Gentleman faid) your Throftle : 
Lye tame, and taken with you; here'is gold! 
To buy you fo much new ftuffes, from the mop, 
As I may take the old vp TRA. You muft send, Sir. 15 
The Gentleman the ring. 

Traine's in his falfe cloak, brings a falfe meffage, and 
gets the ring. 

PVG. There 'tis. Nay looke, 

Will you be foolifh, Pit, PIT. This is ftrange rudeneffe. 
PVG. Deare Pit. PIT. I'll call, I fweare. 

Mere-craft followes presently, and askes for it. 

SD. om. i SN.] [Offers to kiss her. G 5 SN. [Exit 

hastily, (after 5) [Exit, (after 6) G 10 SN.] Sweetheart ! Re- 

enter PITFALL. sir? [Pug runs to her. G 16 SN.] Enter 

TRAINS in his false beard and cloke. (after Vp '15) [Exit Trains, ,] 
(after ' 'tis ' 16) G 18 SN. Enter MEERCRAFT. G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 75 

MER. Where are you, S r ? 

Is your ring ready ? Goe with me. PVG. I fent it you. 
MER. Me? When? by whom? P*VG. A fellow here, 
e'en now, 20 

Came for it i' your name. MER. I fent none, fure. 
My meaning euer was, you fhould deliuer it, 
Your felfe : So was your Maflers charge, you know. 

Ent. Train's as himfelfe againe. 

What fellow was it, doe you know him? PVG. Here, 
But now, he had it. MER. Saw you any? Traines? 25 
TRA. Not I. PVG. The Gentleman faw him. MER. 

PVG. I was fo earnefl vpon her, I mark'd not ! 

The Diuell confeffeth himfelfe coosen'd. 

My diuellifh Chief e has put mee here in flesh, [H 1 ] 

To fhame mee ! This dull body I am in, 
I perceiue nothing with! I offer at nothing, 30 

That will fucceed ! TRA. Sir, me faw none, fhe faies. 
PVG. Satan himfelfe, has tane a fhape t'abufe me. 
It could not be elfe. MER. This is aboue flrange ! 

Mere-craft accufeth him of negligence. 

That you mould be fo retchleffe. What'll you do, Sir? 
How will you anfwer this, when you are queftion'd? 35 
PVG. Run from my flefh, if I could: put off mankind! 
This's fuch a fcorne ! and will be a new exercife, 
For my Arch-Duke \ Woe to the feuerall cudgells, 
Muft suffer, on this backe ! Can you no fuccours ? Sir ? 39 

He asketh ayde. 

MER. Alas ! the vfe of it is fo prefent. PVG. I aske, 
Sir, credit for another, but till to morrow ? 

MER. There is not fo much time, Sir. But how euer, 
The lady is a noble Lady, and will 
(To faue a Gentleman from check) be intreated 

Mere-craft promifeth faintly, yet comforts him. 

21 for't W 23 SN.] Re-enter TRAINS dressed as at first. G 

26 Gentlewoman 1716 gentlewoman W, G 27, 33, 39 SN. om. G 

31 succeed ! [Aside. G 33 else ! [Aside. G 34 '11] will G 

37 's] is G 39 back ! [Aside.] G 44 entreated W, G 

76 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

To fay, flie ha's receiu'd it. PVG. Do you thinke fo? 45 
Will ftiee be won ? MER. No doubt, to fuch an office, 
It will be a Lady's brauery, and her pride. 

PVG. And not be knowne on't after, vnto him? 

MER. That were a treachery! Vpon my word, 
Be confident. Returne vnto your mafter, 50 

My Lady Prefident fits this after-noone, 
Ha's tane the ring, commends her feruices 
Vnto your Lady-Dutcheffe. You may fay 
She's a ciuill Lady, and do's giue her 

All her refpefts, already: Bad you, tell her 55 

She Hues, but to receiue her wifh'd commandements, 
And haue the honor here to kiffe her hands : 
For which fhee'll flay this houre yet. Haften you 
Your Prince, away. PVG. And Sir, you will take care 
Th' excufe be perfect ? MER. You conf effe your f eares. 60 

The Diuel is doubtfull. 

Too much. PVG. The fhame is more, I'll quit you of 



A Pox vpo' referring to Commissioners, 
I'had rather heare that it were pafl the feales : 
Your Courtiers moue fo Snaile-like i' your 


Wuld I had begun wi' you. MER. We mufl moue, 
Madame, in order, by degrees: not iump. 5 

TAY. Why, there was S r . lohn Manic-man could iump 
A Bufineffe quickely. MER. True, hee had great friends, 

45 has 1692, f. passim 44, 60 SN. om. G 60 period om. 

1716, f. 61 I'll . . .] Meer. I'll . . . W, G 61 {Exeunt G 

SD. IIIJ] VI. 1641 TAILE . . . ] A room in Lady TAILBUSH'S House. 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 77 

But, becaufe fome, fweete Madame, can leape ditches, 
Wee muft not all fhunne to goe ouer bridges. 
The harder parts, I make account are done: 10 

He flatters her. 

Now, 'tis referr'd. You are infinitly bound 
Vnto'the Ladies, they ha' so cri'd it vp ! 

TAY. Doe they like it then? MER. They ha' fent the 

To gratulate with you TAY. I must fend 'hem 

And fome remembrances. MER. That you muft, and vifit 

'hem. 15 

Where's Ambler? TAY. Loft, to day, we cannot heare 

of him. 
MER. Not Madam? TAY. No in good faith. They 

fay he lay not 

At home, to night. And here has fall'n a Bufmeffe 
Betweene your Coufm, and Mailer Manly, has 
Vnquieted vs all. MER. So I heare, Madame. 20 

Pray you how was it ? TAY. Troth, it but appeares 
111 o' your Kinfmans part. You may haue heard, 
That Manly is a futor to me, I doubt not : 

MER. I guefs'd it, Madame. TAY. And it feemes, he 


Your Coufm to let fall some faire reports 25 

Of him vnto mee. MER. Which he did ! TAY. So farre 
From it, as hee came in, and tooke him rayling 
Againft him. MER. How ! And what said Manly to him ? 

TAY. Inough, I doe afTure you : and with that f corne 
Of him, and the iniury, as I doe wonder 30 

How Euerill bore it ! But that guilt vndoe's 
Many mens valors MER. Here comes Manly. MAN. 

Madame, [143] 

I'll take my leaue 

Manly offers to be gone. 

TAY. You fha' not goe, i' faith. 

10 SN. om. G 32 valours. Enter MANLY. G 33 SN. 

om. G 

7 8 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

I'll ha' you flay, and fee this Spani/h miracle, 

Of our Engli/h Ladie. MAN. Let me pray your Ladi- 

jhip, 35 

Lay your commands on me, some other time. 

TAY. Now, I protefl : and I will haue all piec'd, 
And friends againe. MAN. It will be but ill folder'd ! 
TAY. You are too much affected with it. MAN. I 


Madame, but thinke on't for th' iniuftice. TAY. Sir, 40 
His kinfman here is forry. MER. Not I, Madam, 
I am no kin to him, wee but call Coufms, 

Mere-craft denies him. 

And if wee were, Sir, I haue no relation 
Vnto his crimes. MAN. You are not vrged with 'hem. 
I can accufe, Sir, none but mine owne Judgement, 45 

For though it were his crime, fo to betray mee : 
I am fure, 'twas more mine owne, at all to truft him. 
But he, therein, did vfe but his old manners, 
And fauour ftrongly what hee was before. 

TAY. Come, he will change! MAN. Faith, I mufl 

neuer think it. 50 

Nor were it reafon in mee to expe6l 
That for my fake, hee mould put off a nature 
Hee fuck'd in with his milke. It may be Madam, 
Deceiuing truft, is all he has to truft to : 
If fo, I fhall be loath, that any hope 55 

Of mine, mould bate him of his meanes. TAY. Yo' are 

fharp, Sir. 

This at may make him honeft! MAN. If he were 
To be made honeft, by an aft of Parliament, 
I mould not alter, i' my faith of him. TAY. Eyther-fide ! 
Welcome, deare Either- fide ! how haft thou done, good 

wench ? 

She fpies the Lady Eyther-fide. 
Thou haft beene a ftranger! I ha' not feene thee, this 

weeke. 61 

42 SN. om. G 43 wee] he G 47 I'm 1716, W 

56 Y'are 1716, W 59 him. Enter Lady EITHERSIDE. 

60 SN. om. G 


Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 79 


EITHERSIDE. | To them 

EVer your feruant, Madame. TAY. Where hast 'hou 
beene? [*44] 

I did fo long to fee thee. EIT. Vifiting, and fo tyr'd! 
I proteft, Madame, 'tis a monftrous trouble! 

TAY. And fo it is. I fweare I mufl to morrow, 
Beginne my vifits (would they were ouer) at Court. 5 
It tortures me, to thinke on 'hem. EIT. I doe heare 
You ha' caufe, Madam, your fute goes on. TAY. Who 

told thee? 
EYT. One, that can tell: M r . Eyther-fide. TAY. O, 

thy hufband! 

Yes, faith, there's life in't, now: It is referr'd. 
If wee once fee it vnder the feales, wench, then, 10 

Haue with 'hem for the great Carroch, fixe horfes, 
And the two Coach-men, with my Ambler, bare, 
And my three women : wee will Hue, i' faith, 
The examples o' the towne, and gouerne it. 
I'le lead the fafhion ftill. EIT. You doe that, now, 15 
Sweet Madame. TAY. O, but then, I'll euery day 
Bring vp fome new deuice. Thou and I, Either- fide, 
Will firft be in it, I will giue it thee ; 
And they fhall follow vs. Thou fhalt, I fweare, 
Weare euery moneth a new gowne, out of it. 20 

EITH. Thanke you good Madame. TAY. Pray thee 

call mee Taile-bu/h 
As I thee, Either- fide : I not loue this, Madame. 

EYT. Then I proteft to you, Taile-bu/h, I am glad 
Your Bufmeffe fo fucceeds. TAY. Thanke thee, good 

SD. om. G i thou 1692, f. 22 not loue] love not 1716, f. 

8o The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

EYT. But Mafler Either-fide tells me, that he likes 25 
Your other Bufmeffe better. TAY. Which? KIT. O' 

the Tooth-picks. 

TAY. I neuer heard on't. EIT. Aske M r . Mere-craft. 
MER. Madame? H'is one, in a word, I'll truft his 

With any mans credit, I would haue abus'd ! 

Mere-craft hath whifper'd with the while. 
MAN. Sir, if you thinke you doe pleafe mee, in this, 30 
You are deceiu'd! MER. No, but becaufe my Lady, 
Nam'd him my kinfman ; I would fatisfie you, 
What I thinke of him: and pray you, vpon it 
To iudge mee ! MAN. So I doe : that ill mens f riendfhip, 
Is as vnf aithfull, as themfelues. TAY. Doe you heare ? 35 
Ha' you a Bufmeffe about Tooth-picks? MER. Yes, 


Did I ne'r tell't you ? I meant to haue offer'd it 
Your Lady-JJiip, on the perfecting the pattent. [i45] 

TAY. How is't! MER. For feruing the whole Hate 

with Tooth-picks ; 

The ProiecT; for Tooth-picks. 

(Somewhat an intricate Bufmeffe to difcourfe) but 40 
I mew, how much the SubiecT; is abus'd, 
Firft, in that one commodity ? then what difeaf es, 
And putrefactions in the gummes are bred, 
By thofe are made'of'adultrate, and falfe wood? 
My plot, for reformation of thefe, followes. 45 

To haue all Tooth-picks, brought vnto an office, 
There feal'd ; and fuch as counterfait 'hem, mulcted. 
And laft, for venting 'hem to haue a booke 
Printed, to teach their vfe, which euery childe 
Shall haue throughout the kingdome, that can read, 50 

And learne to picke his teeth by. Which beginning 
Earely to practice, with fome other rules, 

26 O'] O, 1641 27 on't] of it G 28 Madam ! {Aside to 

Manly.} G He is G 29 SN. with him the 1692, 1716, W 

SN. om. G 37 tell it G 39 is it G SN. om. G 

40 an] in 1641 42 disease W 44 adulterate G 

Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 81 

Of neuer ileeping with the mouth open, chawing 
Some graines of maflicke, will preferue the breath 
Pure, and fo free from taynt ha' what is't? faift thou? 

Traines his man whtfpers him. 

TAY. Good faith, it founds a very pretty Bus'neffe ! 56 
EIT. So M r . Either-fide faies, Madame. MER. The 

Lady is come. 

TAY. Is fhe? Good, waite vpon her in. My Ambler 
Was neuer fo ill abfent. Either- fide, 

How doe I looke to day? Am I not drefl, 60 

Spruntly ? 

She lookes in her glaffe. 

EIT. Yes, verily, Madame. TAY. Pox o' Madame, 
Will you not leaue that? EIT. Yes, good Taile-bufh. 

TAY. So ? 

Sounds not that better? What vile Fucus is this, 
Thou haft got on? EIT. Tis Pearle. TAY. Pearled 

Oyfter-fliells : 

As I breath, Either-side, I know't. Here comes 65 

(They say) a wonder, firrah, has beene in Spainel 
Will teach vs all ; fhee's fent to mee, from Court. 
To gratulate with mee! Pr'y thee, let's obferue her, 
What faults fhe has, that wee may laugh at 'hem, 
When fhe is gone, EIT. That we will heartily, Tail- 
bufli. 70 

Wittipol enters. 
TAY. O, mee ! the very Infanta of the Giants \ 

53 chewing 1716, f. 55 SN.] taint Enter TRAINS, and 

whispers him. G 58 in. [Exit Meercraft.~\ G 61 SN.] 

She om. G o' ret. G 68 Prythee 1692 Prithee 1716 prithee 

W, G 70 SN.] Re-enter MEERCRAFT, introdiicing WITTIPOL 

dressed as a Spanish Lady. G 

82 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 



Wittipol is dreft like a Spanifh Lady. 

MER. Here is a noble Lady, Madame, come, [146] 
From your great friends, at Court, to fee your 

Ladi-fliip : 

And haue the honour of your acquaintance. TAY. Sir. 
She do's vs honour. WIT. Pray you, fay to her Ladifliip, 
It is the manner of Spaine, to imbrace onely, 5 

Neuer to kifle. She will excufe the cuftome ! 

Excuses him felfe for not kifsing. 

TAY. Your vfe of it is law. Pleafe you, fweete, Madame, 
To take a feate. WIT. Yes, Madame. I'haue had 
The fauour, through a world of faire report 
To know your vertues, Madame ; and in that 10 

Name, haue defir'd the happineffe of prefenting 
My feruice to your Ladijhip \ TAY. Your loue, Madame, 
I mufl not owne it elfe. WIT. Both are due, Madame, 
To your great vndertakings. TAY. Great? In troth, 


They are my friends, that thinke 'hem any thing: 15 

If I can doe my fexe (by 'hem) any feruice, 
I'haue my ends, Madame. WIT. And they are noble ones, 
That make a multitude beholden, Madame: 
The common-wealth of Ladies, mufl acknowledge from you. 
EIT. Except fome enuious, Madame. WIT. Yo' are 
right in that, Madame, 20 

Of which race, I encountred fome but lately. 
Who ('t feemes) haue fludyed reafons to dif credit 
Your bufmeffe. TAY. How, fweet Madame. WIT. Nay, 
the parties 

SD. om. G i SN. is om. 1692, 1716, W For G see 70 above. 

5 embrace 1716, f. 6 SN. om. G 16 'em G 20 Yo'] 

Y' 1716, W 22 't] it G 

Sc. m] The Diitell is an Asse 83 

Wi' not be worth your paufe Mofl ruinous things, 


That haue put off all hope of being recouer'd 25 

To a degree of handfomeneffe. TAY. But their reafons, 

Madame ? 

I would faine heare. WIT. Some Madame, I remember. 
They fay, that painting quite deflroyes the face 

EIT. O, that's an old one, Madame. WIT. There are 

new ones, too. 

Corrupts the breath ; hath left fo little fweetneffe 30 

In kifling, as 'tis now vf 'd, but for f afhion : 
And fhortly will be taken for a punifhment. 
Decayes the fore-teeth, that mould guard the tongue ; 
And fuffers that runne riot euer-lafling ! 
And (which is worfe) fome Ladies when they meete 35 
Cannot be merry, and laugh, but they doe fpit 
In one anothers faces! MAN. I mould know 

This voyce, and face too : 

Manly begins to know him. 

WIT. Then they fay, 'tis dangerous [147] 
To all the falne, yet well difpos'd Mad-dames, 
That are induftrious, and defire to earne 40 

Their liuing with their fweate ! For any diflemper 
Of heat, and motion, may dif place the colours; 
And if the paint once runne about their faces, 
Twenty to one, they will appeare fo ill-fauour'd, 
Their feruants run away, too, and leaue the pleafure 45 
Imperfect, and the reckoning alf vnpay'd. 

EIT. Pox, thefe are Poets reafons. TAY. Some old 

That keepes a Poet, has deuis'd thefe fcandales. 

EIT. Faith we muft haue the Po'ets banifh'd, Madame, 

As Matter Either- fide faies. MER. Matter Fits-dottrel ? 50 

And his wife : where ? Madame, the Duke of Drown' d-land, 

That will be mortly. WIT. Is this my Lord? MER. The 


38 SN.] [Aside. G 39 Mad-dams 1692, 1716 mad-dams W 

mad-ams G 46 also G 51 wife! Wit. Where? Enter 

Mr. and Mrs. FITZDOTTREL, followed by PUG. Meer. [To Wit.~\ Madam, G 

84 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 


FlTZ-DOTTREL. Miflreffc FlTZ-DOT- 

TRELL. PVG. \ to them. 

YOur feruant, Madame \ WIT. How now ? Friend ? 
That I haue found your haunt here? 

Wittipol whifpers with Manly. 
MAN. No, but wondring 

At your ftrange falhion'd venture, hither. WIT. It is 
To mew you what they are, you fo purfue. 

MAN. I thinke 'twill proue a med'cine againft marriage ; 

To know their manners. WIT. Stay, and profit then. 6 

MER. The Lady, Madame, whose Prince has brought 

her, here, 
To be inftruaed. 

Hee prefents Miftreffe Fitz-dottrel. 
WIT. Pleafe you fit with vs, Lady.. 
MER. That's Lady-Prefident. FIT. A goodly woman! 
I cannot fee the ring, though. MER. Sir, fhe has it. 10 
TAY. But, Madame, thefe are very feeble reafons ! 
WIT. So I vrg'd Madame, that the new complexion, 
Now to come forth, in name o' your LadiJJiip's fucus, 
Had no ingredient TAY. But I durft eate, I affure you. 
WIT. So do they, in Spaine. TAY. Sweet Madam be 
fo liberall, 15 

To giue vs fome o' your Spanifli Fucufesl 

WIT. They are infinit, Madame. TAY. So I heare, 

they haue 

Water of Gourdes, of RadijJi] the white Beanes, 
Flowers of Glaffe, of Thiflles, Rofe-marine. 

SD. om. G i Wit. [Takes Manly aside.} 2 SN. om. G 

wondering G 8 SN. Hee om. G 13 o'] of W 

14 had] has W/G 17 hear. Wit. They G 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 85 

Raw Honey, Muftard-feed, and Bread dough-bak'd, 20 

The crums o' bread, Goats-milke, and whites of Egges, 
Campheere, and Lilly-roots, the fat of Swannes, 
Marrow of Veale, white Pidgeons, and pine-kernells, [148] 
The feedes of Nettles, perse'line, and hares gall. 
Limons, thin-skind EIT. How, her Ladiflrip has 
ftudied 25 

Al excellent things! WIT. But ordinary, Madame. 
No, the true rarities, are th' Aluagada, 
And Argentata of Queene Isabellal 

TAY. I, what are their ingredients, gentle Madame? 

WIT. Your Allum Scagliola, or Pol-dipedra; 30 

And Zuccarino ; Turpentine of Abezzo, 
VVash'd in nine waters : Soda di leuante, 
Or your Feme afhes ; Beniamin di gotta ; 
Graff o di ferpe ; Porcelletto marino ; 

Oyles of Lentifco; Zucche Mugia; make 35 

The admirable Vernifli for the face, 
Giues the right lufter ; but two drops rub'd on 
With a piece of fcarlet, makes a Lady of fixty 
Looke at fixteen. But, aboue all, the water 
Of the white Hen, of the Lady Eflifaniasl 40 

TAY. O, I, that fame, good Madame, I haue heard of : 
How is it done? WIT. Madame, you take your Hen, 
Plume it, and skin it, cleame it o' the inwards: 
Then chop it, bones and all : adde to f cure ounces 
Of Carrauicins, Pipit as, Sope of Cyprus, 45 

Make the decoflion, ftreine it. Then diftill it, 
And keep it in your galley-pot well glidder'd : 
Three drops preferues from wrinkles, warts, fpots, moles, 
Blemifh, or Sun-burnings, and keepes the skin 
In decimo fexto, euer bright, and fmooth, 50 

As any looking-glaffe ; and indeed, is call'd 
The Virgins milke for the face, Oglio reale ; 

22 Camphire 1716, f. 32, 3 leuante . . . di om. 1641 

34 Grosia 1641 35 Zucchi 1641 3 6 varnish G 

39 at] as 1716, f. 43 o' ret. G 

86 The DiuelL is an Asse [ACT iv 

A Cerufe, neyther cold or heat, will hurt ; 
And mixt with oyle of myrrhe, and the red Gilli-flower 
Call'd Cataputia; and flowers of Rouiftico ; 55 

Makes the beft muta, or dye of the whole world. 
TAY. Deare Madame, will you let vs be familiar? 
WIT. Your Ladifliips feruant. MER. How do you like 

her. FIT. Admirable ! 
But, yet, I cannot fee the ring. 

Hee is iealous about his ring, and Mere-craft deliuers it. 

PVG. Sir. MER. I muft 

Deliuer it, or marre all. This foole's fo iealous. 60 

Madame Sir, weare this ring, and pray you take knowledge, 
'Twas fent you by his wife. And giue her thanks, 
Doe not you dwindle, Sir, beare vp. PVG. I thanke you, 

TAY. But for the manner of Spaine\ Sweet, Madame, 

let vs 

Be bold, now we are in: Are all the Ladies, 65 

There, i' the fafhion? WIT. None but Grandee's, 


O' the clafp'd traine, which may be worne at length, too, 
Or thus, vpon my arme. TAY. And doe they weare 
Cioppino's all ? WIT. If they be drefl in punto, Madame. 
EIT. Guilt as thofe are ? madame ? WIT. Of Goldfmiths 
work, madame; [149] 7 

And fet with diamants : and their Spanifli pumps 
Of perfum'd leather. TAI. I fhould thinke it hard 
To go in 'hem, madame. WIT. At the firft, it is, madame. 
TAI. Do you neuer fall in 'hem ? WIT. Neuer. Ei. I 

fweare, I fhould 

Six times an houre. WIT. But you haue men at hand, Hill, 
To helpe you, if you fall? EIT. Onely one, madame, 76 

53 or] nor W, G 59 SN. om. G 60 [Aside. G 

61 Madam {whispers Wit.'} G 63 up. [Aside to Pug. G 

70 EIT.] Lady T. G 71 Diamonds 1692, 1716 diamonds W, G 

75 WIT . . .] speech given to TAI. 1716, f. 76 EIT. . . .] speech 

given to WIT. 1716, f. 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 87 

The Guar do-duennas, fuch a little old man, 

As this. EIT. Alas ! hee can doe nothing ! this ! 

WIT. I'll tell you, madame, I faw i' the Court of Spaine 


A Lady fall i' the Kings fight, along. 80 

And there fliee lay, flat fpred, as an Vmbrella, 
Her hoope here crack'd ; no man durft reach a hand 
To helpe her, till the Guarda-duenn'as came, 
Who is the perfon onel' allow'd to touch 
A Lady there : and he but by this finger. 85 

EIT. Ha' they no feruants, madame, there ? nor friends ? 

WIT. An Efcudero, or fo madame, that wayts 
Vpon 'hem in another Coach, at diftance, 
And when they walke, or daunce, holds by a hand-kercher, 
Neuer prefumes to touch 'hem. EIT. This's fciruy! 90 
And a forc'd grauity ! I doe not like it. 
I like our owne much better. TAY. 'Tis more French, 
And Courtly ours. EIT. And tails more liberty. 
We may haue our doozen of vifiters, at once, 
Make loue t'vs. TAY. And before our husbands? EIT. 
Hufband ? 95 

As I am honeft, Tayle-bufli I doe thinke 
If no body mould loue mee, but my poore husband, 
I mould e'n hang my felf e. TAY. Fortune forbid, wench : 
So faire a necke ihould haue fo foule a neck-lace, 

EIT. 'Tis true, as I am handfome! WIT. I receiu'd, 
Lady, 100 

A token from you, which I would not bee 
Rude to refufe, being your firft remembrance. 

(FiT. O, I am fatisfied now! MER. Do you fee it, 

WIT. But fince you come, to know me, neerer, Lady, 

77 guarda- W, G 78 this. [Points to Trains. G 79 in 

the 1716, f. 84 onl' 1692, 1716 only W, G 89 dance 

1692, f. Handkerchief 1716 handkerchief W, G 90 This is 

W, G 94 dozen 1692, f. 103 now ! [Aside to Meer. G 

88 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

I'll begge the honour, you will weare it for mee, 105 

It muft be fo. 

Wittipol giues it Miflreffe Fitz-dottrel. 

M rs . FIT. Sure I haue heard this tongue. 
MER. What do you meane, S r ? 

Mere-craft murmures, 

WIT. Would you ha' me mercenary? 
We'll recompence it anon, in fomewhat elfe, 

He is -fatisfied, now he -fees it. 

FIT. I doe not loue to be gull'd, though in a toy. 
Wife, doe you heare? yo' are come into the Schole, wife, 
Where you may learne, I doe perceiue it, any thing ! in 
How to be fine, or faire, or great, or proud, 
Or what you will, indeed, wife; heere 'tis taught. 
And I am glad on't, that you may not fay, 
Another day, when honours come vpon you, 115 

You wanted meanes. I ha' done my parts : beene, 
To day at fifty pound charge, firfl, for a ring, [150] 

He -upbraids her, with his Bill of cofts. 
To get you entred. Then left my new Play, 
To wait vpon you, here, to fee't confirm'd. 
That I may fay, both to mine owne eyes, and eares, 120 
Senfes, you are my witneffe, ilia' hath inioy'd 
All helps that could be had, for loue, or money 

M 13 . FIT. To make a foole of her. FIT. Wife, that's 

your malice, 

The wickedneffe o' you nature to interpret 
Your husbands kindeffe thus. But I'll not leaue ; 125 

Still to doe good, for your deprau'd affections: 
Intend it. Bend this ftubborne will ; be great. 
TAY. Good Madame, whom do they vfe in meffages? 

106 SN.] [Gives the ring to Mrs. Fitzdottrel. G Surely 1641 
tongue. [Aside. G 107 SN.] [Aside to Wit. G 108 SN. om. 

[Exeunt Meer. and Trains G no heare ? [ Takes Mrs. Fitz. aside.] 

G You're 1716, W into] in 1641 schoole 1641 School 1692, 
1716 school W, G 117 SN. om. G 118 left] let 1641 

entered W enter'd G 120 owne om. G 121 sha'] she' 1692 

she 1716, f. enjoy'd 1692, f. 124 your 1641, f. 125 kind- 

nesse 1641 Kindness 1692, 1716 kindness W, G 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 89 

Wi. They comonly vfe their ilaues, Madame. TAI. 

And do's your Ladifhip. 

Thinke that fo good, Madame"? WIT. no, indeed, 
Madame; I, 130 

Therein preferre the faihion of England farre, 
Of your young delicate Page, or difcreet Vfher, 

FIT. And I goe with your Ladi/liip, in opinion, 
Dire5lly for your Gentleman-vfher, 
There's not a finer Officer goes on ground. 135 

WIT. If hee be made and broken to his place, once. 

FIT. Nay, fo I prefuppofe him. WIT. And they are 


Managers too, Sir, but I would haue 'hem call'd 
Our E-fcudero's. FIT. Good. WIT. Say, I mould fend 
To your Ladifliip, who (I prefume) has gather'd 140 

All the deare fecrets, to know how to make 
Paftillos of the Dutcheffe of Braganza, 
Coquettas, Almoiauana's, Mantecada's, 
Alcoreas, Muftaccioli; or fay it were 
The Peladore of Isabella, or balls 145 

Againft the itch, or aqua nanfa, or oyle 
Of leffamine for gloues, of the Marqueffe Muja: 
Or for the head, and hayre: why, thefe are offices 

FIT. Fit for a gentleman, not a flaue. They onely 
Might aske for your piueti, Spanifli-colz, 150 

To burne, and fweeten a roome ; but the Arcana 
Of Ladies Cabinets FIT. Should be elf e- where trufted. 
Yo' are much about the truth. Sweet honoured Ladies, 

He enters himfelfe with the Ladie's 
Let mee fall in wi' you. Fha' my female wit, 
As well as my male. And I doe know what futes 155 
A Lady of fpirit, or a woman of fafhion! 

WIT. And you would haue your wife fuch. FIT. Yes, 

Madame, aerie, 
Light; not to plaine difhonefty, I meaner 

147 Marquess 1692, 1716 marquess W 149 FlT -] Eith - X 7 l6 . w 

Wit. They G 153 SN. om. G You're 1716, W 

9 o 

The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

But, fomewhat o' this fide. WIT. I take you, Sir. 
H'has reafon Ladies. I'll not giue this rum 160 

For any Lady, that cannot be honeft 
Within a thred. TAY. Yes, Madame, and yet venter 
As far for th'other, in her Fame WIT. As can be ; 
Coach it to Pimlico ; daunce the Saraband ; [151] 

Heare, and talke bawdy ; laugh as loud, as a larum ; 165 
Squeake, fpring, do any thing. KIT. In young company, 

TAY. Or afore gallants. If they be braue, or Lords, 
A woman is ingag'd. FIT. I fay fo, Ladies, 
It is ciuility to deny vs nothing. 

PVG. You talke of a Vniuerfityl why, Hell is 170 
A Grammar-fchoole to this! 

The Diuell admire shim. 
FIT. But then, 
Shee muft not lofe a looke on ftuffes, or cloth, Madame. 

TAY. Nor no courfe fellow. WIT. She muft be guided, 


By the clothes he weares, and company he is in ; 
Whom to falute, how farre FIT. I ha' told her this. 175 
And how that bawdry too, vpo' the point, 
Is (in it felfe) as ciuill a dif courfe 

WIT. As any other affayre of flem, what euer. 

FIT. But fhee will ne'r be capable, fhee is not 
So much as comming, Madame ; I know not how 180 

She lofes all her opportunities 
With hoping to be forc'd. I'haue entertain'd 

He /hews his Pug. 

A gentleman, a younger brother, here, 
Whom I would faine breed vp, her Efcudero, 
Againft fome expectation's that I haue, 185 

And fhe'll not countenance him. WIT. What's his name? 

FIT. Diuel, o' Darbi-Jhire. EIT. Bleffe us from him! 
TAY. Diuell? 

160 He 'as 1716, W 162 venture 1692, f. 164 dance 

1641, f. 168 engag'd W engaged G 171 SN.] [Aside. G 

176 baudery 1641 182 SN. om. G 

Sc. iv] The Diiiell is an Asse 91 

Call him De-uile, fweet Madame. M rs . Fi. What you 

pleafe, Ladies. 
TAY. De-uile' s a prettier name ! EIT. And founds, me 


As it came in with the Conquerour MAN. Ouer 
f mocks ! 190 

What things they are? That nature ihould be at leafure 
Euer to make 'hem ! my woing is at an end. 

Manly goes out with indignation. 
WIT. What can he do? EIT. Let's heare him. TAY. 

Can he manage? 
FIT. Pleafe you to try him, Ladies. Stand forth, 


PVG. Was all this but the preface to my torment? 195 
FIT. Come, let their Ladifliips fee your honours. 

EIT. O, 
Hee makes a wicked leg. TAY. As euer I faw! 

WIT. Fit for a Diuell. TAY. Good Madame, call him 


WIT. De-uile, what property is there moft required 
I' your conceit, now, in the Efcudero? 200 

They begin their Catechifme. 
FIT. Why doe you not speake? PVG. A fetled 

difcreet pafe, Madame. 

WIT. I thinke, a barren head, Sir, Mountaine-like, 
To be expos'd to the cruelty of weathers 

FIT. I, for his Valley is beneath the wafte, Madame, 
And to be fruitfull there, it is fufficient. 205 

DulneiTe vpon you ! Could not you hit this ? 

PVG. Good Sir 

He flrikes him. 

WIT. He then had had no barren head. 
You daw him too much, in troth, Sir. FIT. I muft 

192 SN.] [Aside, and exit with indignation. G Wooing 1692, 1716 
wooing W, G 195 [Aside. G 196 Ladiship 1641 

200, 210 SN. om. G 201 pase] pause 1641 207 SN.] [Fit 

strikes Pug. W He om. G 208 draw 1716 

92 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

With the French ilicke, like an old vierger for you, 

PVG. O, Chiefe, call mee to Hell againe, and free 

mee. 210 

The Diuell prayes. 

FIT. Do you murmur now? PVG. Not I, S r . WIT. 
What do you take [!5 2 ] 

M r . Deuile, the height of your employment, 
In the true perfect Efcudero? FIT. When? 
What doe you anfwer? PVG. To be able, Madame, 
Firft to enquire, then report the working, 215 

Of any Ladies phylicke, in fweete phrafe, 

WIT. Yes, that's an al of elegance, and importance. 
But what aboue? FIT. O, that I had a goad for him. 
PVG. To find out a good Corne-cutter. TAY. Out on 


EIT. Moft barbarous! FIT. Why did you doe this, 
now ? 220 

Of purpofe to difcredit me? you damn'd Diuell. 

PVG. Sure, if I be not yet, I mail be. All 
My daies in Hell, were holy-daies to this ! 

TAY. 'Tis labour loft, Madame? EIT. H'is a dlull 


Of no capacity ! TAI. Of no difcourfe ! 225 

O, if my Ambler had beene here ! FIT. I, Madame ; 
You talke of a man, where is there fuch another? 

WIT. M r . Deuile, put cafe, one of my Ladies, heere, 
Had a fine brach: and would imploy you forth 
To treate 'bout a conuenient match for her. 230 

W T hat would you obferue? PVG. The color, and the fize, 

WIT. And nothing elfe? FIT. The Moon, you calfe, 

the Moone! 
WIT. I, and the Signe. TAI. Yes, and receits for 


WIT. Then when the Puppies came, what would you 

209 Virger W verger G 210 [Aside. G 212 Divele 

1641 223 [Aside. G 224 He's 1716, W He is G 

229 employ 1692, f. 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 93 

PVG. Get their natiuities caft! WIT. This's wel. 

What more? 235 

PVG. Confult the Almanack-man which would be leaft? 

Which cleanelieft? WIT. And which filenteft? This's 

wel, madamel 
WIT. And while me were with puppy? PVG. Walke 

her out, 

And ayre her euery morning! WIT. Very good! 
And be induflrious to kill her fleas? 240 

PVG. Yes! WIT. He will make a pretty proficient. 

PVG. Who, 

Comming from Hell, could looke for fuch Catechiimg? 
The Diuell is an Affe. I doe acknowledge it. 

FIT. The top of woman! All her fexe in abflra6l! 

Fitz-dottrel admires Wittipol. 

I loue her, to each fyllable, falls from her. 245 

TAI. Good madame giue me leaue to goe afide with 

And try him a little! WIT. Do, and I'll with-draw, 

With this faire Lady: read to her, the while. 

TAI. Come, S r . PVG. Deare Chief e, relieue me, or I 


The Diuel praies again. 

WIT. Lady, we'll follow. You are not iealous Sir? 250 
FIT. O, madamel you mail fee. Stay wife, behold, 
I giue her vp heere, abfolutely, to you, 
She is your owne. Do with her what you will! 

He giues his wife to him, taking hint to be a Lady. 
Melt, caft, and forme her as you mail thinke good ! 
Set any ftamp on! I'll receiue her from you 255 

As a new thing, by your owne ftandard! WIT. Well, 

235, 237 This's] This is 1716, f. 237 cleanliest 1692, f. 

silent'st 1692. f. 238 WIT. om. 1692, f. 242 such] such a 

W, G 243 [Aside. G 244 SN.] [Aside, and looking at Witti 

pol. G 249 SN.] [Aside. G 253 SN. om. G 256 [Exit 

Wit. Well, sir ! [Exeunt Wittipol with Mrs. Fitz. and Tailbush and 
Eitherside with Pug. G 

The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 



BVt what ha' you done i' your Dependence, fmce? [153] 
FIT. O, it goes on, I met your Coufm, the Mafter 
MER. You did not acquaint him, S r ? FIT. Faith, but 

I did, S r . 

And vpon better thought, not without reafon! 
He being chiefe Officer, might ha' tane it ill, elfe, 5 

As a Contempt againft his Place, and that 
In time Sir, ha' drawne on another Dependance. 
No, I did finde him in good termes, and ready 
To doe me any feruiee. MER. So he said, to you? 
But S r , you do not know him. FIT. Why, I presum'd 10 
Becaufe this bus'neffe of my wiues, requir'd mee, 
I could not ha' done better: And hee told 
Me, that he would goe prefently to your Councell, 
A Knight, here, i' the Lane MER. Yes, luftice Either- 


FIT. And get the Feoffment drawne, with a letter of 
Atturney, 15 

For liuerie and feifenl MER. That I knowe's the courfe. 
But Sir, you meane not to make him Feoffee ? 

FIT. Nay, that I'll paufe on! MER. How now little 


PIT. Your Coufm Mafter Euer-ill, would come in 
But he would know if Mafter Manly were heere. 20 

MER. No, tell him, if he were, I ha' made his peace ! 

Mere-craft whifpers againft him. 

SD. V] III. 1641 ACT. . . .] SCENE II. Another Room in the same. 
Enter MEERCRAFT and FITZDOTTREL. G 5 taken G 9 ser 

vice 1641, W, G Service 1692, 1716 18 on. Enter PITFALL. G 

20 Mr. 1692, 1716 mr. W 21 [Exit Pitfall. SN. om. G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 95 

Hee's one, Sir, has no State, and a man knowes not, 
How fuch a truft may tempt him. FIT. I conceiue you. 
EVE. S r . this fame deed is done here. MER. Pretty 

Plutarchus ? 

Art thou come with it? and has Sir Paul view'd it? 25 
PLV. His hand is to the draught. MER. Will you 

ftep in, S r . 
And read it? FIT. Yes. EVE. I pray you a word wi' 


Eueril tsuhtfpers again/I Mere-craft. 
Sir Paul Eitherfide will'd mee gi' you caution, 
Whom you did make Feoffee : for 'tis the truft 
O' your whole State : and though my Coufm heere 30 
Be a worthy Gentleman, yet his valour has 
At the tall board bin queftion'd : and we hold 
Any man fo impeach'd, of doubtfull honefty! 
I will not iuftifie this ; but giue it you 
To make your profit of it: if you vtter it, 35 

I can forfweare it! FIT. I beleeue you, and thanke you, 




BE not afraid, fweet Lady : yo' are trufted [*54] 

To loue, not violence here ; I am no rauimer, 
But one, whom you, by your faire truft againe, 
May of a feruant make a moft true friend. 

M rs . Fi. And fuch a one I need, but not this way : 5 

23 Enter EVERILL and PLUTARCHUS. G 25 Paul 1692, 1716 

Poul W 27 SN.] [Aside to Fitz. G 28 give 1641, G 
Paul~\ as in 4.5.25 36 [Exeunt. G 

SD. SCENE III Another Room in the same. Enter WITTIPOL, and 

Mrs. FITZDOTTREL. G i Yo'] you W 4 MANLY enters 
behind. G 

96 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

Sir, I confeile me to you, the meere manner 

Of your attempting mee, this morning tooke mee, 

And I did hold m'inuention, and my manners, 

Were both engag'd, to giue it a requitall ; 

But not vnto your ends : my hope was then, 10 

(Though interrupted, ere it could be vtter'd) 

That whom I found the Matter of fuch language, 

That braine and fpirit, for fuch an enterprife, 

Could not, but if thofe fuccours were demanded 

To a right vfe, employ them vertuoufly ! 15 

And make that profit of his noble parts, 

Which they would yeeld. S r , you haue now the ground, 

To exercife them in : I am a woman ; 

That cannot fpeake more wretchedneffe of my felfe, 

Then you can read ; match'd to a mafic of folly ; 20 

That euery day makes hafle to his owne ruine ; 

The wealthy portion, that I brought him, fpent ; 

And (through my friends neglel) no ioynture made me. 

My fortunes {landing in this precipice, 

'Tis Counfell that I want, and honeft aides : 25 

And in this name, I need you, for a friend ! 

Neuer in any other ; for his ill, 

Mufl not make me, S r , worfe. 

Manly, conceal 'd this while, Jhews himfelfe. 
MAN. O friend! forfake not 
The braue occafion, vertue offers you, 

To keepe you innocent: I haue fear'd for both; 30 

And watch'd you, to preuent the ill I fear'd. 
But, fmce the weaker fide hath fo affur'd mee, 
Let not the ftronger fall by his owne vice, 
Or be the leffe a friend, caufe vertue needs him. 

WIT. Vertue mail neuer aske my fuccours twice ; 35 
Moft friend, moft man ; your Counfells are commands : 
Lady, I can loue goodnes in you, more 
Then I did Beauty ; and doe here intitle 
Your vertue, to the power, vpon a life 

8 m'] my W, G 28 SN.] [comes forward.] G 

Sc. vn] The Diuell is an Asse 97 

You fhall engage in any f ruitfull feruice, 40 

Euen to forfeit. MER. Madame: Do you heare, Sir, 

Mere-craft takes Wittipol afide, & moues a proieft for 


We haue another leg-flrain'd, for this Dottrel. 
He'ha's a quarrell to carry, and ha's cauf'd 
A deed of Feoffment, of his whole eftate 
To be drawne yonder ; h'ha'fl within : And you, 45 

Onely, he meanes to make Feoffee. H'is falne 
So defperatly enamour'd on you, and talkes 
Mofl like a mad-man : you did neuer heare 
A Phrentick, fo in loue with his owne f auour ! 
Now, you doe know, 'tis of no validity 50 

In your name, as you Hand ; Therefore aduife him 
To put in me. (h'is come here:) You mail mare Sir. 





FIT. Madame, I haue a fuit to you ; and afore-hand, 
I doe befpeake you ; you muft not deny me, 
I will be graunted. WIT. Sir, I muft know it, though. 

FIT. No Lady ; you muft not know it : yet, you muft too. 
For the truft of it, and the fame indeed, 5 

Which elfe were loft me. I would vfe your name, 
But in a Feoffment: make my whole eftate 
Ouer vnto you : a trifle, a thing of nothing, 

40 faithfull 1641 41 SN.] Enter MEERCRAFT. (after forfeit.') 

Aside to Wittipol. (after 'Sir,') G 42 leg-strain'd] hyphen om. 

1692, f. 43 He'] H' 1692, 1716 45 h' om. 1641 he W. G 

46 H'is] He's 1716, W He is G 49 phrenetic G 52 me ! 

Enter FITZDOTTREL, EVERILL, and PLUTARCHUS. G h'is] He's 1716 , f. 

SD. om. G 3 granted 1692, f. 

98 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT iv 

Some eighteene hundred. WIT. Alas ! I vnderftand not 
Thofe things Sir. I am a woman, and moft loath, 10 

To embarque my felfe FIT. You will not flight me, 

Madame ? 
WIT. Nor you'll not quarrell me? FIT. No, fweet 

Madame, I haue 

Already a dependence ; for which caufe 
I doe this : let me put you in, deare Madame, 
I may be fairely kill'd. WIT. You haue your friends, 
Sir, 15 

About you here, for choice. EVE. She tells you right, Sir. 

Hee hopes to be the man. 

FIT. Death, if fhe doe, what do I care for that? 
Say, I would haue her tell me wrong. WIT. Why, 
Sir, [156] 

If for the trufl, you'll let me haue the honor 
To name you one. FIT. Nay, you do me the honor, 
Madame : 20 

Who is't? WIT. This Gentleman: 

Shee deftgnes Manly. 
FIT. O, no, sweet Madame, 
H'is friend to him, with whom I ha' the dependance. 

WIT. Who might he bee ? FIT. One Wittipol : do you 

know him? 

WIT. Alas Sir, he, a toy : This Gentleman 
A friend to him ? no more then I am Sir ! 25 

FIT. But will your Ladyfhip vndertake that, Madame? 
WIT. Yes, and what elfe, for him, you will engage me. 
FIT. What is his name? WIT. His name is Euftace 

FIT. Whence do's he write himfelfe? WIT. of 


Efquire. FIT. Say nothing, Madame. Clerke, come 
hether 30 

16 SN. om. G 21 SN. She om. W She . . . ] [Pointing to 

Manly. G 22 He's 1716, f. 30 [To Plutarchus. G hither 

1692, f. 

Sc. vn] The Diuell is an Asse 99 

Write Euftace Manly, Squire o' Middlesex. 

MER. What ha' you done, Sir? WIT. Nam'd a 


That I'll be anfwerable for, to you, Sir. 
Had I nam'd you, it might ha' beene fufpe6led : 
This way, 'tis fafe. FIT. Come Gentlemen, your hands, 35 
For witnes. MAN. What is this? EVE. You ha' made 

Eueril applaudes it. 
Of a moft worthy Gentlemanl MAN. Would one of 


Had fpoke it: whence it comes, it is 
Rather a fhame to me, then a praife. 

EVE. Sir, I will giue you any Satisfaction. 40 

MAN. Be filent then: "falfhood commends not truth. 
PLV. You do deliuer this, Sir, as your deed. 
To th' vfe of M r . Manly ? FIT. Yes : and Sir 
When did you fee yong Wittipol? I am ready, 
For proceffe now ; Sir, this is Publication. 45 

He mall heare from me, he would needes be courting 
My wife, Sir. MAN. Yes: So witneffeth his Cloake 

FIT. Nay good Sir, Madame, you did vndertake 

Fitz-dottrel is fufpicious of Manly flill. 
WIT. What? FIT. That he was not Wittipols 

friend. WIT. I heare 

S r . no conf effion of it. FIT. O me know's not ; 50 

Now I remember, Madamel This young Wittipol, 
Would ha' debauch'd my wife, and made me Cuckold, 
Through a cafement ; he did fly her home 
To mine owne window : but I think I fou't him, 
And rauifh'd her away, out of his pownces. 55 

I ha' fworne to ha' him by the eares : I f eare 

32 sir? [Aside to Wit. G 36 SN. om. G 38 it ! but now 

whence W, G 39 to] unto W, G . 43 IT* Manly. G 

48 SN. om. G 49 WIT.] What. 1641 53 Thorow 1692 

Thorough 1716, f. 54 sou't]fou'ti692 fought 1716, W sous'd G 

ioo The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

The toy, wi' not do me right. WIT. No? that were 

pitty ! 

What right doe you aske, Sir? Here he is will do't you? 

Wittipol difcouers himfelfe. 

FIT. Ha? Wittipol? WIT. I Sir, no more Lady now, 

Nor Spaniard I MAN. No indeed, 'tis Wittipol. 60 

FIT. Am I the thing I fear'd? WIT. A Cuckold? 

No Sir, 

But you were late in poffibility, 

I'll tell you fo much. MAN. But your wife's too vertuous ! 

WIT. Wee'll fee her Sir, at home, and leaue you here, 

To be made Duke o' Shore-ditch with a proiecl;. [157] 65 

FIT. Theeues, rauimers. WIT. Crie but another 

note, Sir, 

I'll marre the tune, o' your pipe! FIT. Gi' me my deed, 

He would haue his deed again. 

WIT. Neither : that mail be kept for your wiues good, 
Who will know, better how to vfe it. FIT. Ha' 
To feaft you with my land? WIT. Sir, be you quiet, 70 
Or I mall gag you, ere I goe, confult 
Your Mafter of dependances ; how to make this 
A fecond bufmeffe, you haue time Sir. 

VVitipol bafflees him, and goes out 

FIT. Oh! 

What will the ghoft of my wife Grandfather, 
My learned Father, with my worfhipfull Mother, 75 

Thinke of me now, that left me in this world 
In flate to be their Heire? that am become 
A Cuckold, and an Affe, and my wiues Ward ; 
Likely to loofe my land ; ha' my throat cut : 
All, by her praftice! MER. Sir, we are all abus'd! 80 

FIT. And be fo flill ! Who hinders you, I pray you, 
Let me alone, I would enioy my felfe, 
And be the Duke o' Drown'd-Land, you ha' made me. 
MER. Sir, we muft play an after-game o' this 

58 SN. Wittipol om. G 67 SN. om. G 69 Ha ! 1692, f. 

73 SN.] {Baffles him, and exit with Manly. G 82 injoy 1641 

Sc. i] The Diuell is an Asse 101 

FIT. But I am not in cafe to be a Gam-fler : 85 

I tell you once againe MER. You muft be rul'd 
And take fome counfell. FIT. Sir, I do hate counfell, 
As I do hate my wife, my wicked wife! 

MER. But we may thinke how to recouer all : 
If you will a5l. FIT. I will not think ; nor a5l ; 90 

Nor yet recouer; do not talke to me? 
I'll runne out o' my witts, rather then heare; 
I will be what I am, Fabian Fits-Dottrel, 
Though all the world fay nay to't. MER. Let's follow 



BVt ha's my Lady mift me? PIT. Beyond tell 
Here ha's been that infinity of ftrangers! 
And then fhe would ha' had you, to ha' fampled you 
With one within, that they are now a teaching ; 
And do's pretend to your ranck. AMB. Good fellow 
Pit-fall, 5 

Tel M 1 . Mere-craft, I intreat a word with him. 

Pitfall goes out. 

This moft vnlucky accident will goe neare 
To be the loffe o' my place ; I am in doubt ! 

MER. With me? what fay you M r Ambler? AMB. 


I would befeech your worfhip Hand betweene 10 

Me, and my Ladies difpleafure, for my abfence. 

94 to't. [Exit. G Let's] Let us W, G him. [Exeunt. G 

SD. AMBLER . . . ] A Room in Tailbush's House, Enter AMBLER 

and PITFALL. G 6 entreat W, G SN.] [Exit Pitfall. G 


IO2 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

MER. O, is that all? I warrant you. AMB. I would 

tell you Sir 

But how it happened. MER. Briefe, good Mailer Ambler, 
Put your selfe to your rack : for I haue tafque 

Of more importance. 

Mere-craft -feemes full of bufineffe. 

AMB. Sir you'll laugh at me? 15 
But (fo is Truth} a very friend of mine, 
Finding by conference with me, that I liu'd 
Too chaft for my complexion (and indeed 
Too honeft for my place, Sir) did aduife me 
If I did loue my felfe (as that I do, 20 

I muft confefTe) MER. Spare your Parenthesis. 
AMB. To gi' my body a little euacuation 
MER. Well, and you went to a whore? AMB. No, S r . 

I durft not 

(For feare it might arriue at fome body's eare, 
It mould not) truft my felfe to a common houfe ; 25 

Ambler tels this with extraordinary -fpeed. 
But got the Gentlewoman to goe with me, 
And carry her bedding to a Conduit-head, 
Hard by the place toward Tyborne, which they call 
My L. Majors Banqueting-houfe. Now Sir, This 


Was Execution ; and I ner'e dream't on't, 30 

Till I heard the noife o' the people, and the horfes ; 
And neither I, nor the poore Gentlewoman [ J 59] 

Durft ftirre, till all was done and paft : fo that 
I' the Interim, we fell a fleepe againe. 

He flags 
MER. Nay, if you fall, from your gallop, I am gone 

Sr - 35 

AMB. But, when I wak'd, to put on my cloathes, a fute, 
I made new for the aftion, it was gone, 
And all my money, with my purfe, my feales, 

12 that] this 1641 14 a tasque 1641 15 SN. om. G 

i6()ret. G 25 SN. Ambler om. G 29 Mayor's 1716, f. 

30 never W, G 34 SN. stags 1641 

Sc. n] The Diuell is an Asse 103 

My hard-wax, and my table-bookes, my fludies, 

And a fine new deuife, I liad to carry 40 

My pen, and inke, my ciuet, and my tooth-picks, 

All vnder one. But, that which greiu'd me, was 

The Gentlewoman's fhoes (with a paire of rofes, 

And garters, I had giuen her for the bufmeffe) 

So as that made vs flay, till it was darke. 45 

For I was f aine to lend her mine, and walke 

In a rug, by her, barefoote, to Saint Giles 'es. 

MER. A kind of Trim penance! Is this all, Sir? 

AMB. To fatisfie my Lady. MER. I will promife 
you, S r . 

AMB. I ha' told the true Dif after. MER. I cannot flay 
wi' you 50 

Sir, to condole ; but gratulate your returne. 

AMB. An honefl gentleman, but he's neuer at leifure 
To be himfelfe: He ha's fuch tides of bufineffe. 



OCall me home againe, deare Chief 'e, and put me 
j To yoaking foxes, milking of Hee-goates, 
Pounding of water in a morter, lauing 
The fea dry with a nut-fhell, gathering all 
The leaues are falne this Autumne, drawing farts 5 
Out of dead bodies, making ropes of fand, 
Catching the windes together in a net, 
Muflring of ants, and numbring atonies; all 
That hell, and you thought exquifite torments, rather 
Then flay me here, a thought more : I would fooner 10 

43, 4 (with . . . garters,) W ( ) ret. G 51, 3 [Exit. G 

SD.] SCENE II. Another Room in the Same. Enter PUG. G 
8 mustering G numbering G 

IO4 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

Keepe fleas within a circle, and be accomptant 

A thoufand yeere, which of 'hem and how far 

Out leap'd the other, then endure a minute 

Such as I haue within. There is no hell 

To a Lady of fafhion. All your tortures there 15 

Are paftimes to it. 'T would be a ref refhing [160] 

For me, to be i' the fire againe, from hence. 

Ambler comes in, & furuayes him 

AMB. This is my fuite, and thofe the moes and rofes ! 
PVG. Th' haue such impertinent vexations, 
A generall Councell o' diuels could not hit 20 

Pug perceiues it, and flarts. 

Ha! This is hee, I tooke a fleepe with his Wench, 
And borrow'd his cloathes. What might I doe to balke 

AMB. Do you heare, S r ? PVG. Answ. him but not to 


AMB. What is your name, I pray you Sir. PVG. Is't fo 
late Sir? 

He anfwers quite from the purpofe. 

AMB. I aske not o' the time, but of your name, Sir, 25 
PVG. I thanke you, Sir. Yes it dos hold Sir, certaine. 
AMB. Hold, Sir? What holds? I muft both hold, and 

talke to you 

About thefe clothes. PVG. A very pretty lace! 
But the Taylor coffend me. AMB. No, I am coffend 
By you ! robb'd. PVG. Why, when you pleafe Sir, I am 30 
For three peny Gleeke, your man AMB. Pox o' your 


And three pence. Giue me an anfwere. PVG. Sir, 
My mailer is the beft at it. AMB. Your mafter ! 
Who is your Mafter. PVG. Let it be friday night. 

AMB. What mould be then? PVG. Your beft fongs 
Thorn, o' Bet'lem 35 

17 SN.] Enter AMBLER, and surveys him. G 18 [Aside. G 

19 They've W They have G 20 SN. om. 1641 [sees Ambler.} G 

22, 3 [Aside. G 23 him om. 1641 24, 40 SN. om. G 

31 o' ret. G 35 Tom 1641, G o' ret. G Bethlem 1716. G 

Bethlem W 

Sc. in] The Diuell is an Asse 105 

AMB. I thinke, you are he. Do's he mocke me trow, 

from purpofe? 

Or do not I fpeake to him, what I meane ? 
Good Sir your name. PVG. Only a couple a' Cocks Sir, 
If we can get a W id gin, 'tis in feafon. 

AMB. He hopes to make on o' thefe Scipticks o' me 40 

For Scepticks. 

(I thinke I name 'hem right) and do's not fly me. 
I wonder at that ! 'tis a ftrange confidence ! 
I'll prooue another way, to draw his anfwer. 



IT is the eafieft thing Sir, to be done. 
As plaine, as fizzling : roule but wi' your eyes, 
And foame at th' mouth. A little caftle-foape 
Will do't, to rub your lips : And then a nutfhell, 
With toe, and touch-wood in it to fpit fire, 5 

Did you ner'e read, Sir, little Barrels tricks, 
With the boy o' Burton, and the 7. in Lancajliire, 
Sommers at Nottingham? All thefe do teach it. 
And wee'll giue out, Sir, that your wife ha's bewitch'd 

you: t l6l l 

They repaire their old plot 

EVE. And praftifed with thofe two, as Sorcerers. 10 
MER. And ga' you potions, by which meanes you were 

Not Compos mentis, when you made your feoffment. 

There's no recouery o' your Hate, but this : 

This, Sir, will fling. EVE. And moue in a Court of equity. 

38 a'] o' 1692, 1716, W of G 40 on] one 1641, f. 41 () 

ret. G 43 [Exeunt severally. G 

SD.] SCENE III. A Room in Fitzdottrel's House. Enter MEERCRAFT, 
FITZDOTTREL and EVERILL. G 2 Roll 1692, 1716 roll W, G 

9 SN. om. G n gave G 13 estate 1641 

io6 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

MER. For, it is more then manifeft, that this was 15 
A plot o' your wiues, to get your land. FIT. I thinke it. 
EVE. Sir it appeares. MER. Nay, and my coffen has 

Thefe gallants in thefe lhapes. EVE. T'haue don ftrange 

things, Sir. 
One as the Lady, the other as the Squire. 

MER. How, a mans honefly may be fool'd! I thought 
him 20 

A very Lady. FIT. So did I : renounce me elfe. 

MER. But this way, Sir, you'll be reueng'd at height. 
EVE, Vpon 'hem all. MER. Yes faith, and fmce your 

Has runne the way of woman thus, e'en giue her 

FIT. Loft by this hand, to me, dead to all ioyes 25 

Of her deare Dottrell, I fhall neuer pitty her : 
That could, pitty her felfe. MER. Princely refolu'd Sir, 
And like your felfe ftill, in Potentia. 


MERE-CRAFT, &c. to them. GVILT-HEAD. 

GVilt-head what newes. ? FIT. O Sir, my hundred 
peices : 
Let me ha' them yet. 

Fitz-dottrel afkes for his money. 
Gvi. Yes Sir/ officers 

Arrefthim. FIT. Me? SER. larreftyou. SLE. Keepe 
the peace, 

18 shapes G 27 could not pity W could [not] pity G 

SD. MERE . . . theni\ To them. Mere-craft &c. 1692 MERE-CRAFT, 
&c. om. 1716, W 

ACT. . . . ] Enter GILTHEAD, PLUTARCHUS, SLEDGE, and Serjeants. G 
2 SN. om. G 3 SER.] i Serj. G 

Sc. iv] The Diuell is an Asse 107 

I charge you gentlemen. FIT. Arreft me? Why? 

Gvi. For better fecurity, Sir. My fonne Plutarchus 5 
Allures me, y'are not worth a groat. PLV. Pardon me, 


I said his worfhip had no f oote of Land left : 
And that I'll iuftifie, for I writ the deed. 

FIT. Ha' you thefe tricks i' the citty? Gvi. Yes, and 


Arreft this gallant too, here, at my fuite. 10 

Meaning Mere-craft 

SLE. I, and at mine. He owes me for his lodging 
Two yeere and a quarter. MER. Why M. Guilt-head, 


Thou art not mad, though th'art Constable 
Puft vp with th' pride of the place? Do you heare, Sirs. 
Haue I deferu'd this from you two? for all 15 

My paines at Court, to get you each a patent 

Gvi. For what? MER. Vpo' my proiecl o' the forkes, 

SLE. Forkes? what be they? [ J 62] 

The Pro j eft of forks 
MER. The laudable vfe of forkes, 
Brought into cuftome here, as they are in Italy, 
To th' (paring o' Napkins. That, that mould haue made 20 
Your bellowes goe at the forge, as his at the fornace. 
I ha' procur'd it, ha' the Signet for it, 
Dealt with the Linnen-drapers, on my priuate, 
By cause, I fear'd, they were the likelyeft euer 
To ftirre againft, to croffe it ; for 'twill be 25 

A mighty fauer of Linnen through the kingdome 
(As that is one o' my grounds, and to fpare warning) 
Now, on you two, had I layd all the profits. 
Guilt-head to haue the making of all thofe 
Of gold and filuer, for the better perfonages ; 30 

And you, of thofe of Steele for the common fort. 
And both by Patient, I had brought you your feales in. 

6 y'] you W, G 10 SN.J [Points to Meercraft. G 13 th'] 

thou W, G 18 SN. om. G 23, 4 private Bie, 'cause 1692, 

1716 private, Because W, G 27 to] so 1641 

io8 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

But now you haue preuented me, and I thanke you. 

Sledge is brought about. 

SLE. Sir, I will bayle you, at mine owne ap-perill. 

MER. Nay choofe. PLV. Do you fo too, good Father. 35 

And Guilt-head comes. 

Gvi. I like the fafhion o' the proiecl, well, 
The f orkes ! It may be a lucky one ! and is not 
Intricate, as one would fay, but fit for 
Plaine heads, as ours, to deale in. Do you heare 
Officers, we difcharge you. MER. Why this fhewes 40 
A little good nature in you, I confeffe, 
But do not tempt your friends thus. Little Guilt-head, 
Aduife your fire, great Guilt-head from thefe courfes : 
And, here, to trouble a great man in reuerfion, 
For a matter o' fifty on a falfe Alarme, 45 

Away, it fhewes not well. Let him get the pieces 
And bring 'hem. Yo'll heare more elfe. PLV. Father. 


AMBLER. \To them. 

OMafter Sledge, are you here? I ha' been to feeke 

You are the Conftable, they fay. Here's one 
That I do charge with Felony, for the fuite 
He weares, Sir. MER. Who? M. Fits-Dottrels man? 
Ware what you do, M. Ambler. AMB. Sir, thefe clothes 5 
I'll fweare, are mine: and the fhooes the gentlewomans 
I told you of : and ha' him afore a luftice, [163] 

I will. PVG. My mailer, Sir, will paile his word for me. 
AMB. O, can you fpeake to purpofe now ? FIT. Not I, 

33, 5 SN. om. G 37, 8 Not intricate (1. 38) G 40 you. 

[Exeunt Serjeants. G 45 on] in W, G 47 You'll 1692, 

1716 You'll W Exeunt Gilt, and Plut. Enter AMBLER, dragging in 

SD. om. G 5 Ambler. Enter FITZDOTTREL. G 

Sc. v] The Diuell is an Asse 109 

If you be fuch a one Sir, I will leaue you 10 

To your God fathers in Law. Let twelue men worke. 

Fitz-dottrel difclaimes him. 

PVG. Do you heare Sir, pray, in priuate. FIT. well, 

what fay you? 

Briefe, for I haue no time to loofe, PVG. Truth is, Sir, 
I am the very Diuell, and had leaue 

To take this body, I am in, to ferue you : 15 

Which was a Cutpurfes, and hang'd this Morning. 
And it is likewife true, I flole this fuite 
To cloth me with. But Sir let me not goe 
To prifon for it. I haue hitherto 

Loft time, done nothing ; fhowne, indeed, no part 20 

O' my Diuels nature. Now, I will fo helpe 
Your malice, 'gainst thefe parties : fo aduance 
The bufmeffe, that you haue in hand of witchcraft, 
And your poffeffion, as my felfe were in you. 
Teach you fuch tricks, to make your belly fwell, 25 

And your eyes turne, to foame, to ftare, to gnalh 
Your teeth together, and to beate your felfe, 
Laugh loud, and f aine fix voices FIT. Out you Rogue ! 
You moft in f email counterfeit wretch ! Auant ! 
Do you thinke to gull me with your Aifops Fables? 30 
Here take him to you, I ha' no part in him. PVG. Sir. 

FIT. Away, I do difclaime, I will not heare you. 

And fends him away. 

MER. What faid he to you, Sir? FIT. Like a lying 

Told me he was the Diuel. MER. How ! a good ieft ! 

FIT. And that he would teach me, fuch fine diuels 
tricks 35 

For our new refolution. EVE. O' pox on him, 
'Twas excellent wifely done, Sir, not to truft him. 

Mere-craft giues the instructions to him and the reft. 

MER. Why, if he were the Diuel, we Iha' not need him, 

II SN. om. G 12 private. [Takes him aside. G 28 loud] 

round 1716 32 SN.] [Exit Sledge -with Pug. G 36 O'] 

O W O, G 37 SN. om. G 

no The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

If you'll be rul'd. Goe throw your felfe on a bed, Sir, 

And faine you ill. Wee'll not be feene wi' you, 40 

Till after, that you haue a fit : and all 

Confirm'd within. Keepe you with the two Ladies 

And perfwade them. I'll to luftice Either-fide, 

And poffeffe him with all. Traines mail feeke out Ingine, 

And they two fill the towne with't, euery cable 45 

Is to be veer'd. We muft employ out all 

Our emiff aries now ; Sir, I will fend you 

Bladders and Bellowes. Sir, be confident, 

Tis no hard thing t'out doe the Deuill in : 

A Boy o' thirteene yeere old made him an Affe 50 

But t'toher day. FIT. Well, I'll beginne to practice; 

And fcape the imputation of being Cuckold, 

By mine owne a6l. MER. yo' are right. EVE. Come, 

you ha' put 

Your felfe to a fimple coyle here, and your freinds, [164] 

By dealing with new Agents, in new plots. 55 

MER. No more o' that, fweet coufm. EVE. What had 

To doe with this fame Wittipol, for a Lady ? 

MER. Queltion not that: 'tis done. EVE. You had 

fome ftraine 
'Boue E-/a? MER. I had indeed. EVE. And, now, you 

crack for't. 
MER. Do not vpbraid me. EVE. Come, you muft be 

told on't; 60 

You are fo couetous, ftill, to embrace 
More then you can, that you loofe all. MER. 'Tis right. 
What would you more, then Guilty? Now, your fuccours. 

42 [to Everill. G 43 I will G 45 two] to 1641 

46 imploy 1641 49 t' ret. G 51 t'tother 1692 t'other 

1716, f. 53 You're 1716, W right. [Exit Fitz. G 

61 imbrace 1641 63 [Exeunt. G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 1 1 1 



Pug is brought to New-gate. 

HEre you are lodg'd, Sir, you muft fend your garnifh, 
If you'll be priuat. PVG. There it is, Sir, leaue me. 
To New-gate, brought? How is the name of Deuill 
Difcredited in me ! What a loft fiend 

Shall I be, on returne? My Cheife will roare 5 

In triumph, now, that I haue beene on earth, 
A day, and done no noted thing, but brought 
That body back here, was hang'd out this morning. 
Well ! would it once were midnight, that I knew 
My vtmoft. I thinke Time be drunke, and ileepes ; 10 
He is fo flill, and moues not ! I doe glory 
Now i' my torment. Neither can I expeSl it, 

I haue it with my fa6l. 

Enter Iniquity the Vice. 

INI. Child of hell, be thou merry : 
Put a looke on, as round, boy, and red as a cherry. 
Caft care at thy pofternes ; and firke i' thy fetters, 15 

They are ornaments, Baby, haue graced thy betters: 
Looke vpon me, and hearken. Our Cheife doth falute thee, 
And leafl the coldyron ihould chance to confute thee, 
H'hath fent thee, grant-paroll by me to ftay longer 
A moneth here on earth, againft cold Child, or honger 20 
PVG. How? longer here a moneth? ING. Yes, boy, 

till the Sefflon, 
That fo thou mayeft haue a triumphall egreffion. 

PVG. In a cart, to be hang'd. ING. No, Child, in a 

SD. VJ] VII. W ACT. . . . ] SCENE IV. A Cell in Newgate. 
Enter SHACKLES, with PUG in chains. G 2 [Exit Shackles. 

SN. (after ' fact.' 13) the Vice om. G 12 i'] in W 18 the] 

our 1692, 1716 19 parole G 22 maist 1692 may'st 1716 

mayst W, G 

! 1 2 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

The charriot of Triumph, which moft of them are. 

And in the meane time, to be greazy, and bouzy, 25 

And nafty, and filthy, and ragged and louzy, 

With dam'n me, renounce me, and all the fine phrafes ; 

That bring, vnto Tiborne, the plentifull gazes. 

PVG. He is a Diuell \ and may be our Cheifel [165] 
The great Superiour Diuell ! for his malice : 30 

Arch-diuell I acknowledge him. He knew 
What I would fuffer, when he tie'd me vp thus 
In a rogues body : and he has (I thanke him) 
His tyrannous pleafure on me, to confine me 
To the vnlucky carkaffe of a Cutpurfe, 35 

Wherein I could do nothing. 

The great Deuill enters, and -upbraids him with all his 
dayes worke. 

Div. Impudent fiend, 

Stop thy lewd mouth. Doeft thou not fhame and tremble 
To lay thine owne dull damn'd defects vpon 
An innocent cafe, there ? Why thou heauy flaue ! 
The fpirit, that did poffeffe that flelh before 40 

Put more true life, in a finger, and a thumbe, 
Then thou in the whole Maffe. Yet thou rebell'ft 
And murmur'ft ? What one prof er haft thou made, 
Wicked inough, this day, that might be call'd 
Worthy thine owne, much leffe the name that fent thee ? 45 
Firft, thou did'ft helpe thy felfe into a beating 
Promptly, and with't endangered'ft too thy tongue : 
A Diuell, and could not keepe a body intire 
One day! That, for our credit. And to vindicate it, 
Hinderd'ft (for ought thou know'ft) a deed of darknefle : 50 
Which was an al of that egregious folly, 
As no one, to'ard the Diuel, could ha' thought on. 
This for your aSling ! but for suffering ! why 
Thou haft beene cheated on, with a falfe beard, 
And a turn'd cloake. Faith, would your predeceffour 55 

36 SN.] Enter SATAN. G Div.] Sat. G 37 Dost 1692, 1716 

44 enough 1692, f. 48 entire W, G 

Sc. vi] The Diuell is an Asse 113 

The Cutpurfe, thinke you, ha' been fo? Out vpon thee, 

The hurt th' haft don, to let men know their ftrength, 

And that the'are able to out-doe a diuel 

Put in a body, will for euer be 

A fcarre vpon our Name! whom haft thou dealt with, 60 

Woman or man, this day, but haue out-gone thee 

Some way, and moft haue prou'd the better fiendes? 

Yet, you would be imploy'd? Yes, hell lhall make you 

Prouinciall o' the Cheaters \ or Bawd-ledger, 

For this fide o' the towne ! No doubt you'll render 65 

A rare accompt of things. Bane o' your itch, 

And fcratching for imployment. I'll ha' brimftone 

To al lay it fure, and fire to fmdge your nayles off, 

But, that I would not fuch a damn'd difhonor 

Sticke on our ftate, as that the diuell were hang'd ; 70 

And could not faue a body, that he tooke 

From Tyborne, but it muft come thither againe : 

You fhould e'en ride. But, vp away with him 

Iniquity take shim on his back. 
INI. Mount, dearling of darkneffe, my fhoulders are 

broad : 

He that caries the fiend, is fure of his loade. 75 

The Diuell was wont to carry away the euill ; [ 166] 

But, now, the Euill out-carries the Diuell. 

57 th'] thou G 58 the'are] they are 1641, G the'are are 1692 

they're 1716, W 63 employ'd W, G 67 employment W, G 

64 Cheaters] heaters 1641 77 {Exeunt. [A loud explosion, smoke, 

&c. G 

H4 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 



A great noise is heard in New-gate, and the Keepers come 
out affrighted. 

Omee! KEE. i. What's this? 2. A piece of Justice 

Is broken downe. 3. Fough ! what a ileeme of brimflone 
Is here ? 4. The prif oner's dead, came in but now ! 
SHA. Ha? where? 4. Look here. KEE. S'lid, I fhuld 

know his countenance ! 

It is Gill-Cut-purfe, was hang'd out, this morning ! 5 

SHA. 'Tis he ! 2. The Diuell, fure, has a hand in this ! 

3. What mail wee doe? SHA. Carry the newes of it 
Vnto the Sherifes. I. And to the luftices. 

4. This ftrange! 3. And fauours of the Diuell, ftrongly! 
2. I' ha' the fulphure of Hell-code i' my nofe. 10 
i. Fough. SHA. Carry him in. i. Away. 2. How 

ranke it is ! 

SD.] Enter SHACKLES, and the Under-keepers, affrighted. G 
3 Is here?] part of line 2 W 9 This is 1716, f. II [Exeunt 

with the body. G 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 115 



\ To them j- 


The luftice comes out wondring, and the reft informing 

THis was the notableft Confpiracy, 
That ere I heard of. MER. Sir, They had giu'n 

him potions, 

That did enamour him on the counterfeit Lady 
EVE. luft to the time o' deliuery o' the deed 
MER. And then the witchcraft 'gan't' appeare, for 
ftreight 5 

He fell into his fit. EVE. Of rage at firft, Sir, 
Which fmce, has fo increafed. TAY. Good S r . Poule, 

fee him, 
And punifh the impoftors. Pov. Therefore I come, 

EIT. Let M r . Etherfide alone, Madame. Pov. Do you 

heare ? 

Call in the Conflable, I will haue him by : 10 

H'is the Kings Officer ! and fome Cittizens, [167] 

Of credit! I'll difcharge my confcience clearly. 

SD. Sir] To them.] Sir 1692 to them om. 1692, 1716, W ACT. 

. . . ] SCENE V. A Room in Fitzdottrel's House. FITZDOTTREL dis 
covered in bed ; Lady EITHERSIDE, TAILBUSH, AMBLER, TRAINS, and 
PITFALL, standing by him. Enter Sir PAUL EITHERSIDE, MEERCRAFT, 
and EVERILL. G i SN. and~\ at 1692, 1716, W The . . . ] om. G 

4 time o' ret. G n H'is] He's 1716, f. 

n6 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

MER. Yes, Sir, and fend for his wife. EVE. And the 

two Sorcerers, 

By any meanes ! TAY. I thought one a true Lady, 
I fhould be fworne. So did you, Eyther-fide ? 15 

EIT. Yes, by that light, would I might ne'r flir elfe, 

TAY. And the other a ciuill Gentleman. EVE. But, 


You know what I told your LadyjJiip. TAY. I now fee it : 
I was prouiding of a banquet for 'hem. 
After I had done inftrucling o' the fellow 20 

De-uile, the Gentlemans man. MER. Who's found a thiefe, 


And to haue rob'd your Vsher, Mailer Ambler, 
This morning. TAY. How? MER. I'll tell you more, 

FIT. Gi me fome garlicke, garlicke, garlicke, garlicke. 

He beginnes his fit. 

MER. Harke the poore Gentleman, how he is tor 
mented ! 25 
FIT. My wife is a whore, I'll kiffe her no more : and why ? 
Ma' ft not thou be a Cuckold, as well as I? 
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, &c. 

Pov. That is the Diuell fpeakes, and laughes in him. 

The luftice interpret all: 

MER. Do you thinke fo, S r . Pov. I difcharge my con- 
fcience. 30 

FIT. And is not the Diuell good company"? Yes,wis. 
EVE. How he changes, Sir, his voyce! FIT. And a 

Cuckold is 

Where ere hee put his head, ^vith a a Wanion, 
If his homes be forth, the Diuells companion \ 
Looke, looke, looke, elfe. MER. How he foames! EVE. 
And fwells ! 35 

TAY. O, me! what's that there, rifes in his belly! 

14 means. [Exit Ambler. G 20 o'] of W 21 Who is G 

28 ha, om. W ha, &c. om. G 29 SN. interprets 1692, 1716, W 

The . . . ] om. G 33 a om. 1641, f. 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 117 

KIT. A flrange thing! hold it downe: TRA. PIT. We 

cannot, Madam. 

Pov. Tis too apparent this! FIT. Wittipol, Wittipol. 

Wittipol, and Manly, and Miftr. Fitz-dottrel enter. 

WIT. How now, what play ha' we here. MAN. What 

fine, new matters? 

WIT. The Cockjcomb, and the Couerlet. MER. O 

flrang impudece! 40 

That thefe mould come to face their fmne! EVE: And 

luflice, they are the parties, Sir. Pov. Say nothing. 

MER. Did you marke, Sir, vpon their comming in, 
How he call'd Wittipol. EVE. And neuer faw 'hem. 

Pov. I warrant you did I, let 'hem play a while. 45 

FIT. Buz, bus, bus, bus. TAY. Laffe poore Gentleman ! 
How he is tortur'd ! M rs . Fi. Fie, Mailer Fits-dottrel \ 
What doe you meane to counterfait thus? FIT: O, o, 

His wife goes to him. 

Shee comes with a needle, and thrufls it in, 
Shee pulls out that, and jliee puts in a pinne, 50 

And now, and now, I doe not knozv how, nor where, 
But fliee pricks mee heere, and jliee pricks me there : oh, oh : 
Pov. Woman forbeare. WIT. What, S r ? Pov. A 

pra&ice foule 

For one fo faire: WIT. Hath this, then, credit with you? 
MAN. Do you beleeue in't? Pov. Gentlemen, I'll 


My confcience. Tis a cleare confpiracy! 56 

A darke, and diuellifh praftice ! I deteft it ! 

WIT. The luftice fure will proue the merrier man ! [168] 
MAN. This is moft flrange, Sir! Pov. Come not to 


Authority with impudence : I tell you, 
I doe deteft it. Here comes the Kings Conftable, 

38 SN. Wittipol, and . . . enter] Enter WITTIPOL, . . . G 
40 strange 1641, f. 43 their] our W 48 SN. His -wife om. G 

58 prove to be the merrier? 1641 60 impudence] insolence 1641 

61 it. Re-enter AMBLER, with SLEDGE and GILTHEAD. G 

ng The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

And with him a right worfhipfull Commoner; 
My good friend, Matter Guilt-head ! I am glad 
I can before fuch witneffes, profeile 

My confcience, and my deteftation of it. 65 

Horible! moil vnaturall! Abominable! 
EVE. You doe not tumble enough. MER. Wallow, 


They whifper him. 

TAY. O, how he is vexed ! Pov. Tis too manif eft. 

EVE. Giue him more foap to foame with, now lie ftill. 

and giue him foape to al with. 

MER. And aft a little. TAY. What do's he now, S r . 

Pov. Shew 

The taking of Tobacco, with which the Diuell 
Is fo delighted. FIT. Hum \ Pov. And calls for Hum. 
You takers of ftrong Waters, and Tobacco, 
Marke this. FIT. Yellozv, yellow, yellow, yellow, &c. 

Pov. That's Starch ! the Diuells Idoll of that colour. 75 
He ratifies it, with clapping of his hands. 
The proofes are pregnant. Gvi. How the Diuel can a6U 

Pov. He is the Matter of Players ! Matter Guilt-head, 
And Poets, too ! you heard him talke in rime ! 
I had forgot to obferue it to you, ere while ! 80 

TAY. See, he fpits fire. Pov. O no, he plaies at 

The Diuell is the Author of wicked Figgum 

Sir Poule interprets Figgum to be a luglers game. 

MAN. Why fpeake you not vnto him? WIT. If I had 
All innocence of man to be indanger'd, 
And he could faue, or mine it : I'ld not breath 85 

A fyllable in requeft, to fuch a foole, 

He makes himfelfe. FIT. O they whifper, whifper, whifper. 
Wee /hall haue more, of Diuells a fcore, 
To come to dinner, in mee the finner. 

69 with [To Meer.} G SN. him om. 1641 SN. om. G 
73 strong om. 1641 74 &c. om. G 82 SN. to be om. 1641 

SN. om. G 84 endanger'd W, G 86 foole] fellow 1641 

87 He makes himselfe] I'd rather fall 1641 O they whisper, they 
whisper, whisper, &c. 1641 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 119 

EYT. Alas, poore Gentleman ! Pov. Put 'hem afunder. 90 
Keepe 'hem one from the other. MAN. Are you phren- 

ticke, Sir, 

Or what graue dotage moues you, to take part 
With so much villany? wee are not afraid 
Either of law, or triall; let vs be 

Examin'd what our ends were, what the meanes ? 95 

To worke by, and poffibility of thofe meanes. 
Doe not conclude againft vs, ere you heare vs. 

Pov. I will not heare you, yet I will conclude 
Out of the circumftances. MAN. Will you fo, Sir? 

Pov. Yes, they are palpable: MAN. Not as your 
folly : loo 

Pov. I will difcharge my confcience, and doe all 
To the Meridian of luftice : Gvi. You doe well, Sir. 

FIT. Prouide mee to eat, three or foure difhes o' good 


I'll feaft them, and their traines, a luftice head and braines 
Shall be the fir ft. Pov. The Diuell loues not luftice, [169] 
There you may fee. FIT. A fpare-rib o' my wife, 106 
And a whores purt'nance \ a Guilt-head whole. 

Pov. Be not you troubled, Sir, the Diuell fpeakes it. 

FIT. Yes, wis, Knight, {hite, Poule, loule, owle, joule, 
troule, boule. 

Pov. Crambe, another of the Diuell' s games! no 

MER. Speake, Sir, fome Greeke, if you can. Is not the 

A f olemne gamefter ? EVE. Peace. FIT. Oi /u,oi, Ka/coSai/iwv, 

Kat TpioxaKoSat/Atov, KCU TCTpaxis, KO.I TrcvraKis, 

Kat SoSeKtW, /ecu /nvpuxKis. Pov. Hee curfes 

In Greeke, I thinke. EVE. Your SpanifJi, that I taught 

you. JI 5 

FIT. Quebremos el ojo de burlas, EVE. How? your 


91 phrenetic G 108 you om. W no Crambe} Crambo 

W, G in can. [Aside to FUz.] G 112 KaKoUfuav 1692, 1716 

113 TUT 1692, 1716 114 5w5e/cd/cis W, G 115 Aside to Fitz. G 

I2O The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

Let's breake his necke in ieft, the Diuell faies, 

FIT. Di gratia, Signbr mio fe hauete denari fatamene 

MER. What, would the Diuell borrow money? FIT. 

Ouy Monfieur, un pauure Diablel Diablet in\ 120 

Pov. It is the diuell, by his feuerall langauges. 

Enter the Keeper of New-gate. 

SHA. Where's S r . Poule Ether-fide? Pov. Here, what's 
the matter ? 

SHA. O ! fuch an accident f alne out at Newgate, Sir : 
A great piece of the prifon is rent downe ! 
The Diuell has beene there, Sir, in the body 125 

Of the young Cut-pur fe, was hang'd out this morning, 
But, in new clothes, Sir, euery one of vs know him. 
Thefe things were found in his pocket. AMB. Thofe are 
mine, S r . 

SHA. I thinke he was commited on your charge, Sir. 
For a new felony AMB. Yes. SHA. Hee's gone, Sir, 
now, 130 

And left vs the dead body. But withall, Sir, 
Such an infernall flincke, and fteame behinde, 
You cannot fee S l . Pulchars Steeple, yet. 
They fmell't as farre as Ware, as the wind lies, 134 

By this time, fure. FIT. Is this vpon your credit, friend? 

Fitz-dottrel leaues counterfaiting. 

SHA. Sir, you may fee, and fatisfie your felfe. 

FIT. Nay, then, 'tis time to leaue off counterfeiting. 
Sir I am not bewitch'd, nor haue a Diuell : 
No more then you. I doe dene him, I, 
And did abufe you. Thefe two Gentlemen 140 

Put me vpon it. (I haue faith againft him) 
They taught me all my tricks. I will tell truth, 
And fhame the Feind. See, here, Sir, are my bellowes, 
And my falfe belly, and my Moufe, and all 

119 FIT. Ouy,} in line 120 1692, f. 121 SN.] Enter SHACKLES, 

with the things fotind on the body of the Cut-purse. G 128 Those] 

These W 135 SN.] Fitz. [starts up.] G 141 ( ) ret. G 

Sc. vm] The Diuell is an Asse 121 

That fhould ha' come forth? MAN. Sir, are not you 

Now of your folemne, ferious vanity? 146 

Pov. I will make honorable amends to truth. 

FIT. And fo will I. But thefe are Coazeners, Hill ; 
And ha' my land, as plotters, with my wife : 
Who, though me be not a witch, is worfe, a whore. 150 

MAN. Sir, you belie her. She is chafte, and vertuous, 
And we are honeft. I doe know no glory t 1 ? ] 

A man mould hope, by venting his owne follyes, 
But you'll Hill be an Affc, in fpight of prouidence. 
Pleafe you goe in, Sir, and heare truths, then iudge 'hem : 
And make amends for your late rafhneffe; when, . 156 
You mail but heare the paines *id care was taken, 
To faue this foole from ruine (his Grace of Drown' d-land} 

FIT. My land is drown'd indeed Pov. Peace. MAN. 

And how much 

His modeft, and too worthy wife hath fuffer'd 160 

By mif-conftruclion, from him, you will blufh, 
Firfl, for your owne belief e, more for his alions! 
His land is his : and neuer, by my friend, 
Or by my felfe, meant to another vfe, 
But for her fuccours, who hath equall right. 165 

If any other had worfe counfells in't, 
(I know I fpeake to thofe can apprehend mee) 
Let 'hem repent 'hem, and be not detected. 
It is not manly to take ioy, or pride 

In humane errours (wee doe all ill things, 170 

They doe 'hem worft that loue 'hem, and dwell there, 
Till the plague comes) The few that haue the feeds 
Of goodneffe left, will fooner make their way 
To a true life, by mame, then punifhment. 


145 not you] you not W, G 148 Coozners 1641 Cozeners 1692, 

1716 cozeners W, G 166 in it G 167 ( ) ret. G 

170 human 1692, f. 174 \He comes forward for the Epilogue. G 

175 'The End.' after line 6 1692 om. 1716 W, G 

122 The Diuell is an Asse 

The Epilogue. 

THus, the ProieSler, here, is ouer-throwne. 
But I haue now a Proieft of mine owne, 
If it may paffe : that no man would inuite 
The Poet from vs, to fup forth to night, 
If the play pleafe. If it difpleafant be, 

We doe prefume, that no man will : nor wee. 

i 'The Epilogue.' om. G 7 [Exeunt. G 


The present edition includes whatever has been considered of 
value in the notes of preceding editions. It has been the intention 
in all cases to acknowledge facts and suggestions borrowed from 
such sources, whether quoted verbatim, abridged, or developed. 
Notes signed W. are from Whalley, G. from Gifford, C. from 
Cunningham. For other abbreviations the Bibliography should be 
consulted. Explanations of words and phrases are usually found 
only in the Glossary. References to this play are by act, scene, and 
line of the Text ; other plays of Jonson are cited from the Gifford- 
Cunningham edition of 1875. The references are to play, volume 
and page. 


THE DIUELL IS AN ASSE. 'Schlegel, seizing with great 
felicity upon an untranslateable German idiom, called the play Der 
dumme Teufel [Schlegel's Werke, ed. Bocking, 6. 340] a title which 
must be allowed to be twice as good as that of the English original. 
The phrase 'the Devil is an ass' appears to have been proverbial. 
See Fletcher's The Chances, Act 5. Sc. 2 : 

Dost thou think 
The devil such an ass as people make him?' 

Ward, Eng. Drama 2. 372. 

A still more important passage occurs in Dekker's // this be not a 
good Play, a partial source of Jonson's drama : 

Scu. Sweete-breads I hold my life, that diuels an asse. 

Dekker, Wks. 3- 328. 

Jonson uses it again in The Staple of News, Wks. 5. 188: 

The conjurer cozened him with a candle's end; he was an ass. 

Dekker (Non-dram. Wks. 2. 275) tells us the jest of a citizen who 
was told that the 'Lawyers get the Diuell and all : What an Asse, 
replied the Citizen is the diuell? If I were as he I would get some 
of them.' 

HIS MAIESTIES SERVANTS. Otherwise known as the 
King's Company, and popularly spoken of as the King's Men. For 
an account of this company see Winter, ed. Staple of News, p. 121 ; 
and Fleay, Biog. Chron. I. 356-7; 2. 43~4- 

124 The Diuell is an Asse [T. P. 

Ficta voluptatis, etc. The quotation is from Horace, De Art. 
Poet., line 338. Jonson's translation is : 

Let what thou feign'st for pleasure's sake, be near 
The truth. 

Jonson makes use of this quotation again in his note 'To the 
Reader' prefixed to Act 3 of The Staple of News. 

I. B. Fleay speaks of this printer as J. Benson (Biog. Chron. I. 
354). Benson did not 'take up freedom' until June 30, 1631 (Sta. 
Reg. 3. 686). Later he became a publisher (1635-40; Sta. Reg. 5. 
Ixxxiv). I. B. was also the printer of Bartholomew Fair and Staple 
of News. ]. Benson published a volume of Jonson's, containing 
The Masque of the Gypsies and other poems, in 1640 (Brit. Museum 
Cat. and Yale Library). In the same year he printed the Art of 
Poetry, I2tno, and the Execration against Vulcan, 4to (cf. Pub. of 
Grolier Club, N. Y. 1893, pp. 130, 132). The evidence that I. B. was 
Benson is strong, but not absolutely conclusive. 

ROBERT ALLOT. We find by Arber's reprint of the 
Stationer's Register that Robert Allot 'took up freedom' Nov. 7, 
1625. He must have begun publishing shortly after, for under the 
date of Jan. 25, 1625-6 we find that Mistris Hodgettes 'assigned 
over unto him all her estate,' consisting of the copies of certain 
books, for the 'some of forty-five pounds.' The first entry of a 
book to Allot is made May 7, 1626. In 1630 Master Blount 'assigned 
over unto him all his estate and right in the copies' of sixteen of 
Shakespeare's plays. In 1632 Allot brought out the Second Folio 
of Shakespeare's works. On Sept. 7, 1631 The Staple of News was 
assigned to him. The last entry of a book in his name is on Sept. 
12, 1635. The first mention of 'Mistris Allott' is under the date of 
Dec. 30, 1635. Under date of July i, 1637 is the record of the 
assignment by Mistris Allott of certain books, formerly the estate 
of 'Master Roberte Allotts deceased.' Among these books are '37. 
Shakespeares Workes their part. 39. Staple of Newes a Play. 40. 
Bartholomew fayre a Play.' I have been able to find no record of 
The Devil is an Ass in the Stationer's Register. 

the Beare. In the Shakespeare folio of 1632 Allot's sign reads 
'the Black Beare.' The first mention of the shop in the London 
Street Directory is in 1575, amongthe 'Houses round the Churchyard.' 

Pauls Church-yard. 'Before the Fire, which destroyed the old 
Cathedral, St. Paul's Churchyard was chiefly inhabited by stationers, 
whose shops were then, and until the year 1760, distinguished by 
signs.' Wh-C. 


GVILT-HEAD, A Gold-smith. The goldsmiths seem to have 
been a prosperous guild. (See Stow, Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 114.) 

PROL.] Notes 125 

At this time they performed the office of banking, constituting the 
intermediate stage between the usurer and the modern banker. 'The 
goldsmiths began to borrow at interest in order to lend out to 
traders at a higher rate. In other words they became the connecting 
link between those who had money to lend and those who wished 
to borrow for trading purposes, or it might be to improve their 
estates. No doubt at first the goldsmiths merely acted as guardians 
of their clients' hoards, but they soon began to utilize those hoards 
much as bankers now make use of the money deposited with them.' 
Social England 3. 544. 

AMBLER. Jonson uses this name again in Neptune's Triumph, 
Wks. 8. 32 : 

Grave master Ambler, news-master o' Paul's, 
Supplies your capon. 

It reappears in The Staple of News. 

Her Gentlemanvsher. For an exposition of the character and 
duties of the gentleman-usher see the notes to 4. 4. 134, 201, 215. 

Newgate. 'This gate hath of long time been a gaol, or prison 
for felons and trespassers, as appeareth by records in the reign of 
King John, and of other kings.' Stow, Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 14. 


i The DIVELL is an Asse. 'This is said by the prologue point 
ing to the title of the play, which as was then the custom, was 
painted in large letters and placed in some conspicuous part of the 
stage.' G. 

Cf. Poetaster, After the second sounding: 'What's here? THE 
ARRAIGNMENT!' Also Wily Beguiled: Prol. How now, my 
honest rogue? What play shall we have here to-night? 

Player. Sir, you may look upon the title. 

Prol. What, Spectrum once again?' 

Jonson often, but not invariably, announces the title of the play 
in the prologue or induction. Cf. Every Man out, Cynthia's Revels, 
Poetaster, and all plays subsequent to Bart. Fair except Sad Shep. 

3 Grandee's. Jonson uses this affected form of address again in 
Timber, ed. Schelling, 22. 27. 

4 allowing vs no place. As Gifford points out, the prologue is 
a protest against the habit prevalent at the time of crowding the 
stage with stools for the accommodation of the spectators. 

Dekker in Chapter 6 of The Guls Horne-booke gives the gallant 
full instructions as to the behavior proper to the play-house. The 
youth is advised to wait until 'the quaking prologue hath (by rub 
bing) got culor into his cheekes', and then 'to creepe from behind 

i26 The Diuell is an Asse [PROL. 

the Arras,' and plant himself 'on the very Rushes where the 
Commedy is to daunce, yea, and vnder the state of Cambises him- 
selfe.' Sir John Davies makes a similar allusion (Epigrams, ed. 
Grosart, 2. 10). Jonson makes frequent reference to the subject. 
Cf. Induction to The Staple of News, Every Man out, Wks. 2. 31 ; 
Prologue to Cynthia's Revels, Wks. 2. 210, etc. 

5 a subtill thing. I. e., thin, airy, spiritual, and so not occupying 

6 worne in a thumbe-ring. 'Nothing was more common, as we 
learn from Lilly, than to carry about familiar spirits, shut up in 
rings, watches, sword-hilts, and other articles of dress.' G. 

I have been unable to verify Gifford's statement from Lilly, but 
the following passage from Harsnet's Declaration (p. 13) confirms 
it: 'For compassing of this treasure, there was a consociation 
betweene 3 or 4 priests, deuill-coniurers, and 4 discouerers, or seers, 
reputed to carry about with them, their familiars in rings, and 
glasses, by whose suggestion they came to notice of those golden 

Gifford says that thumb-rings of Jonson's day were set with jewels 
of an extraordinary size, and that they appear to have been 'more 
affected by magistrates and grave citizens than necromancers.' Cf. 
/ Henry IV. 2.4: 'I could have crept into any alderman's thumb-ring.' 
Also Witts Recreat., Epig. 623 : 

He wears a hoop-ring on his thumb; he has 
Of gravidad a dose, full in the face. 

Glapthorne, Wit in a Constable, 1639, 4. i : 'An alderman I may 
say to you, he has no more wit than the rest of the bench, and that 
lies in his thumb-ring.' 

8 In compasse of a cheese-trencher. The figure seems forced 
to us, but it should be remembered that trenchers were a very impor 
tant article of table equipment in Jonson's day. They were often 
embellished with 'posies,' and it is possible that Jonson was thinking 
of the brevity of such inscriptions. Cf. Dekker, North-Ward Hoe 
3. I (Wks. 3. 38) : 'He have you make 12. poesies for a dozen of 
cheese trenchers.' Also Honest Whore, Part I, Sc. 13 ; and Middle- 
ton, Old Law 2. i (Wks. 2. 149) ; No Wit, no Help like a Woman's 
2. i (Wks. 4. 322). 

15 Like the young adders. It is said that young adders, when 
frightened, run into their mother's mouth for protection. 

16 Would wee could stand due North. I. e., be as infallible as 
the compass. 

17 Muscouy glasse. Cf. Marston, Malcontent, Wks. i. 234: 'She 
were an excellent lady, but that her face peeleth like Muscovy 
glass.' Reed (Old Plays 4. 38) quotes from Giles Fletcher's Russe 

ACT i] Notes 127 

Commonwealth, 1591, p. 10: 'In the province of Corelia, and about 
the river Duyna towards the North-sea, there groweth a soft rock 
which they call Slude. This they cut into pieces, and so tear it into 
thin -flakes, which naturally it is apt for, and so use it for glasse 
lanthorns and such like. It giveth both inwards and outwards a 
clearer light then glasse, and for this respect is better than either 
glasse or home; for that it neither breaketh like glasse, nor yet 
will burne like the lanthorne.' Dekker {Non-dram. Wks. 2. 135) 
speaks of a 'Muscouie Lanthorne.' See Gloss. 

22 the Diuell of Edmunton. The Merry Devil of Edmunton was 
acted by the King's Men at the Globe before Oct. 22, 1607. It has 
been conjecturally assigned to Shakespeare and to Drayton. Hazlitt 
describes it as 'perhaps the first example of sentimental comedy we 
have' (see O. PL, 4th ed., 10. 203 f.). Fleay, who believes Drayton 
to be the author, thinks that the 'Merry devil' of The Merchant of 
Venice 2. 3, alludes to this play (Biog. Chron. i. 151 and 2. 213). 
There were six editions in the I7th century, all in quarto 1608, 
1612, 1617, 1626, 1631, 1655. Middleton, The Black Book, Wks. 8. 
36, alludes to it pleasantly in connection with A Woman kill'd with 
Kindness. Genest mentions it as being revived in 1682. Cf. also 
Staple of News, ist Int. 

26 If this Play doe not like, etc. Jonson refers to Dekker's play 
of 1612 (see Introduction, p. xxix). On the title-page of this play 
we find // it be not good, The Diuel is in it. At the head of Act. i, 
however, the title reads // this be not a good play, etc. 


i. i. i Hoh, hoh, etc. Whalley is right in saying that this is the 
conventional way for the devil to make his appearance in the old 
morality-plays. Gifford objects on the ground that 'it is not the 
roar of terror ; but the boisterous expression of sarcastic merriment 
at the absurd petition of Pug;' an objection, the truth of which 
does not necessarily invalidate Whalley's statement. Jonson of 
course adapts the old conventions to his own ends. See Introduction, 
p. xxiii. 

i. i. 9 Entring a Sow, to make her cast her farrow? Cf. Dek 
ker, etc., Witch of Edmonton (Wks. 4. 423) : 'Countr. I'll be sworn, 
Mr. Carter, she bewitched Gammer Washbowls sow, to cast her 
Pigs a day before she would have farried.' 

i. i. ii Totnam. The first notice of Tottenham Court, as a 
place of public entertainment, contained in the books of the parish 
of St. Gile's-in-the-Fields, occurs under the year 1645 (Wh-C). 
Jonson, however, as early as 1614 speaks of 'courting it to Totnam 
to eat eream' (Bart. Fair, Act i. Sc. i, Wks. 4. 362). George 

ia8 The Diuell is an Asse [Acr i 

Wither, in the Britain's Remembrancer, 1628, refers to the same 

thing : 

And Hogsdone, Islington, and Tothnam-court, 
For cakes and cream had then no small resort. 

Tottenham Fields were until a comparatively recent date a favorite 
place of entertainment. 

i. i. 13 a tonning of Ale, etc. Cf. Sad Shep., Wks. 6. 276: 

The house wives tun not work, nor the milk churn. 

i. i. 15 Spight o' the housewiues cord, or her hot spit. 'There 
be twentie severall waies to make your butter come, which for 
brevitie I omit; as to bind your cherne with a rope, to thrust there 
into a red hot spit, &c.' Scot, Discovery, p. 229. 

i. i. 16, 17 Or some good Ribibe . . . witch. This seems 
to be an allusion, as Fleay suggests, to Heywood's Wise-Woman of 
Hogsdon. The witch of that play declares her dwelling to be in 
'Kentstreet' (Heywood's Wks. 5. 294). A ribibe meant originally 
a musical instrument, and was synonymous with rebec. By analogy, 
perhaps, it was applied to a shrill-voiced old woman. This is Gif- 
ford's explanation. The word occurs again in Skelton's Elynour 
Rummyng, 1. 492, and in Chaucer, The Freres Tale, 1. 1377: 'a 
widwe, an old ribybe.' Skeat offers the following explanation : 'I 
suspect that this old joke, for such it clearly is, arose in a very differ 
ent way [from that suggested by Gifford], viz. from a pun upon 
rebekke, a fiddle, and Rebekke, a married woman, from the mention 
of Rebecca in the marriage-service. Chaucer himself notices the 
latter in E. 1704.' 

i. i. 16 Kentish Towne. Kentish Town, Cantelows, or Cante- 
lupe town is the most ancient district in the parish of Pancras. It 
was originally a small village, and as late as the eighteenth century 
a lonely and somewhat dangerous spot. In later years it became 
noted for its Assembly Rooms. In 1809 Hughson (London 6. 369) 
called it 'the most romantic hamlet in the parish of Pancras.' It 
is now a part of the metropolis. See Samuel Palmer's St. Pancras, 
London, 1870. 

i. i. 17 Hogsden. Stow (Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 158) describes 
Hogsden as a 'large street with houses on both sides.' It was a 
prebend belonging to St. Paul's. In Hogsden fields Jonson killed 
Gabriel Spenser in a duel in 1598. These fields were a great resort 
for the citizens on a holiday. The eating of cream there is fre 
quently mentioned. See the quotation from Wither under note 
i. i. u, and Alchemist, Wks. 4. 155 and 175: 

Ay, he would have built 

The city new; and made a ditch about it 

Of silver, should have run with cream from Hogsden. 

ACT i] Notes 


Stephen in Every Man in dwelt here, and so was forced to associate 
with 'the archers of Finsbury, or the citizens that come a-ducking 
to Islington ponds.' Hogsden or Hoxton, as it is now called, is 
to-day a populous district of the metropolis. 

i. i. 18 shee will not let you play round Robbin. The expres 
sion is obscure, and the dictionaries afford little help. Round-robin 
is a common enough phrase, but none of the meanings recorded is 
applicable in this connection. Some child's game, played in a circle, 
seems to be referred to, or the expression may be a cant term for' 
'play the deuce.' Robin is a name of many associations, and its 
connection with Robin Hood, Robin Goodfellow, and 'Robert's Men' 
('The third old rank of the Canting crew.' Grose.) makes such an 
interpretation more or less probable. 

M. N. G. in N. & Q. pth Ser. 10. 394 says that 'when a man does 
a thing in a circuitous, involved manner he is sometimes said "to 
go all round Robin Hood's barn to do it." ' 'Round Robin Hood's 
barn' may possibly have been the name of a game which has been 
shortened to 'round Robin.' 

i. i. 21 By a Middlesex lury. 'A reproof no less severe than 
merited. It appears from the records of those times, that many 
unfortunate creatures were condemned and executed on charges of 
the rediculous nature here enumerated. In many instances, the 
judge was well convinced of the innocence of the accused, and 
laboured to save them ; but such were the gross and barbarous 
prejudices of the juries, that they would seldom listen to his recom 
mendations ; and he was deterred from shewing mercy, in the last 
place by the brutal ferociousness of the people, whose teeth were set 
on edge with't, and who clamoured tumultuously for the murder of 
the accused.' G. 

i. i. 32 Lancashire. This, as Gifford says, 'was the very hot 
bed of witches.' Fifteen were brought to trial on Aug. 19, 1612, 
twelve of whom were convicted and burnt on the day after their 
trial 'at the common place of execution near to Lancaster.' The 
term 'Lancashire Witches' is now applied to the beautiful women 
for which the country is famed. The details of the Lancaster trial 
are contained in Potts' Discoverie (Lond. 1613), and a satisfactory 
account is given by Wright in his Sorcery and Magic. 

i. i. 33 or some parts of Northumberland. The first witch- 
trial in Northumberland, so far as I have been able to ascertain, 
occurred in 1628. This was the trial of the Witch of Leeplish. 

i. i. 37 a Vice. See Introduction, pp. xxxiv f. 

i. i. 38 To practice there- with any play-fellow. See variants. 
The editors by dropping the hyphen have completely changed the 
sense of the passage. Pug wants a vice in order that he may corrupt 
his play-fellows there-with. 

1 30 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

i. i. 41 ff. Why, any Fraud; 

Or Couetousnesse ; or Lady Vanity; 
Or old Iniquity. Fraud is a character in Robert Wil 
son's The Three Ladies of London, printed 1584, and The Three 
Lords and Three Ladies of London, c 1588, printed 1590. Covetous- 
ness appears in Robin Conscience, c 1530, and is applied to one of 
the characters in The Staple of News, Wks. 5. 216. Vanity is one 
of the characters in Lusty Juventus (see note I. I. 50) and in 
Contention between Liberality and Prodigality, printed 1602 (O. PI., 
4th ed., 8. 328). She seems to have been a favorite with the later 
dramatists, and is frequently mentioned (/ Henry IV. 2. 4; Lear 
2. 2; Jew of Malta 2. 3, Marlowe's Wks. 2. 45). Jonson speaks of 
her again in The Fox, Wks. 3. 218. For Iniquity see Introduction, 
p. xxxviii. 

The change in punctuation (see variants), as well as that two 
lines below, was first suggested by Upton in a note appended to his 
Critical Observations on Shakespeare. Whalley silently adopted the 
reading in both cases. 

i. i. 43 I'll call him hither. See variants. Coleridge, Notes, 
p. 280, says: 'That is, against all probability, and with a (for 
Jonson) impossible violation of character. The words plainly belong 
to Pug, and mark at once his simpleness and his impatience.' Cun 
ningham says that he arrived independently at the same conclusion, 
and points out that it is plain from Iniquity's opening speech that 
he understood the words to be Pug's. 

i. i. 49 thy dagger. See note i. i. 85. 

i. i. 50 lusty luuentus. The morality-play of Lusty Juventus 
was written by R. Wever about 1550. It 'breathes the spirit of the 
dogmatic reformation of the Protector Somerset,' but 'in spite of 
its abundant theology it is neither ill written, nor ill constructed' 
(Ward, Eng. Drama I. 125). It seems to have been very popular, 
and the expression 'a lusty Juventus' became proverbial. It is used 
as early as 1582 by Stanyhurst, Aeneis 2 (Arber). 64 and as late 
as Heywood's Wise Woman of Hogsdon (c 1638), where a gallant 
is apostrophised as Lusty Juventus (Act 4). (See Nares and NED.) 
Portions of the play had been revived not many years before this 
within the tragedy of Thomas More (1590, ace. to Fleay 1596) 
under the title of The Manage of Witt and Wisedome. 'By dogs 
precyous woundes' is one of the oaths used by Lusty Juventus in 
the old play, and may be the 'Gogs-nownes' referred to here (O. PI, 
4th ed., 2. 84). 'Gogs nowns' is used several times in Like will to 
Like (O. PI, 4th ed., 3. 327, 331, etc.). 

i. i. 51 In a cloake to thy heele. See note i. i. 85. 

i. i. 51 a hat like a pent-house. 'When they haue walkt thorow 
the streetes, weare their hats ore their eye-browes, like pollitick 

ACT i] N t es I3I 

penthouses, which commonly make the shop of a Mercer, or a 
Linnen Draper, as dark as a roome in Bedlam.' Dekker, West-ward 
Hoe, Wks. 2. 286. 

With your hat penthouse-like o'er the slope of your eyes. 

Love's Labour's Lost 3. i. 17. 

Halliwell says (L. L. L., ed. Furness, p. 85) : 'An open shed or 
shop, forming a protection against the weather. The house in which 
Shakespeare was born had a penthouse along a portion of it.' In 
Hollyband's Dictionarie, 1593, it is spelled 'pentice,' which shows 
that the rime to 'Juventus' is probably not a distorted one. 

i. i. 52 thy doublet all belly. 'Certaine I am there was neuer 
any kinde of apparell euer inuented that could more disproportion 
the body of man then these Dublets with great bellies, . . . 
stuffed with foure, fiue or six pound of Bombast at the least.' 
Stubbes, Anat., Part i, p. 55. 

i. i. 54 how nimble he is! 'A perfect idea of his activity may 
be formed from the incessant skipping of the modern Harlequin.' G. 

i. i. 56 the top of Pauls-steeple. As Gifford points out, Iniquity 
is boasting of an impossible feat. St. Paul's steeple had been 
destroyed by fire in 1561, and was not yet restored. Several attempts 
were made and money collected. 'James I. countenanced a sermon 
at Paul's Cross in favor of so pious an undertaking, but nothing 
was done till 1633 when reparations commenced with some activity, 
and Inigo Jones designed, at the expense of Charles L, a classic 
portico to a Gothic church.' Wh-C. 

Lupton, London Carbonadoed, 1632, writes : 'The head of St. 
Paul's hath twice been troubled with a burning fever, and so the 
city, to keep it from a third danger, lets it stand without a head.' 
Gifford says that 'the Puritans took a malignant pleasure in this 
mutilated state of the cathedral.' Jonson refers to the disaster in 
his Execration upon Vulcan, U. 61, Wks. 8. 408. See also Dekker, 
Paules Steeples complaint, Non-dram. Wks. 4. 2. 

i. i. 56 Standard in Cheepe. This was a water-stand or conduit 
in the midst of the street of West Cheaping, where executions were 
formerly held. It was in a ruinous condition in 1442, when it was 
repaired by a patent from Henry VI. Stow (Survey, ed. Thorns, 
p. 100) gives a list of famous executions at this place, and says that 
'in the year 1399, Henry IV. caused the blanch charters made by 
Richard II. to be burnt there.' 

i. i. 58 a needle of .Spaine. Gifford, referring to Randolph's 
Amyntas and Ford's Sun's Darling, points out that 'the best needles, 
as well as other sharp instruments, were, in that age, and indeed 
long before and after it, imported from Spain.' The tailor's needle 
was in cant language commonly termed a Spanish pike. 

132 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

References to the Spanish needle are frequent. It is mentioned 
by Jonson in Chloridia, Wks. 8. 99; by Dekker, Wks. 4. 308; and 
by Greene, Wks. u. 241. Howes (p. 1038) says: 'The making of 
Spanish Needles, was first taught in England by Elias Crowse, a 
Germane, about the eight yeare of Queene Elizabeth, and in Queen 
Maries time, there was a Negro made fine Spanish Needles in 
Cheape-side, but would neuer teach his Art to any.' 

i. i. 59 the Suburbs. The suburbs were the outlying districts 
without the walls of the city. Cf. Stow, Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 
156 f. They were for the most part the resort of disorderly per 
sons. Cf. B. & Fl., Humorous Lieut. I. I. ; Massinger, Emperor of 
the East i. 2. ; Shak., Jul. Cues. 2. I ; and Nares, Gloss. Wheatley 
(ed. Ev. Man in, p. i) quotes Chettle's Kind Harts Dreame, 1592: 
'The suburbs of the citie are in many places no other but dark dennes 
for adulterers, thieves, murderers, and every mischief worker ; daily 
experience before the magistrates confirms this for truth.' Cf. also 
Glapthorne, Wit in a Constable, Wks., ed. 1874, I. 219: 

make safe retreat 

Into the Suburbs, there you may finde cast wenches. 

In Every Man in, Wks. I. 25, a 'suburb humour' is spoken of. 

i. i. 60 Petticoate-lane. This is the present Middlesex Street, 
Whitechapel. It was formerly called Hog Lane and was beautified 
with 'fair hedge-rows,' but by Stow's time it had been made 'a 
continual building throughout of garden houses and small cottages' 
(Survey, ed. 1633, p. 120 b). Strype tells us that the house of the 
Spanish Ambassador, supposedly the famous Gondomar, was situated 
there (Survey 2. 28). In his day the inhabitants were French 
Protestant weavers, and later Jews of a disreputable sort. That its 
reputation was somewhat unsavory as early as Nash's time we learn 
from his Prognostication (Wks. 2. 149) : 

'If the Beadelles of Bridewell be carefull this Summer, it may be 
hoped that Peticote lane may be lesse pestered with ill aires than 
it was woont: and the houses there so cleere clensed, that honest 
women may dwell there without any dread of the whip and the 
carte.' Cf. also Penniless Parliament, Old Book Collector's Misc. 
2. 16: 'Many men shall be so venturously given, as they shall go 
into Petticoat Lane, and yet come out again as honestly as they 
went first in.' 

i. i. 60 the Smock-allies. Petticoat Lane led from the high 
street, Whitechapel, to Smock Alley or Gravel Lane. See Hughson 
2. 387. 

i. i. 61 Shoreditch. Shoreditch was formerly notorious for the 
disreputable character of its women. 'To die in Shoreditch' seems 

ACT i] Notes 133 

to have been a proverbial phrase, and is so used by Dryden in The 
Kind Keeper, 4to, 1680. Cf. Nash, Pierce Pennilesse, Wks. 2. 94: 
'Call a Leete at Byshopsgate, & examine how euery second house in 
Shorditch is mayntayned; make a priuie search in Southwarke, and 
tell mee how many Shee-Inmates you finde : nay, goe where you 
will in the Suburbes, and bring me two Virgins that haue vowd 
Chastity and He builde a Nunnery.' Also ibid., p. 95; Gabriel 
Harvey, Prose Wks., ed. Grosart, 2. 169; and Dekker, Wks. 3. 352. 

i. i. 61 Whitechappell. 'Till within memory the district north 
of the High Street was one of the very worst localities in London; 
a region of narrow and filthy streets, yards and alleys, many of them 
wholly occupied by thieves' dens, the receptacles of stolen property, 
gin-spinning dog-holes, low brothels, and putrescent lodging-houses, 
a district unwholesome to approach and unsafe for a decent person 
to traverse even in the day-time.' Wh-C. 

i. i. 61, 2 and so to Saint Kathernes. 

To drinke with the Dutch there, and take forth their patternes. 
Saint Kathernes was the name of a hospital and precinct without 
London. The hospital was said to have been founded by Queen 
Matilda, wife of King Stephen. In The Alchemist (Wks. 4. 161), 
Jonson speaks of its having been used 'to keep the better sort of 
mad-folks.' It was also employed as a reformatory for fallen 
women, and it is here that Winifred in Eastward Ho (ed. Schelling, 
p. 84) finds an appropriate landing-place. 

From this hospital there was 'a continual street, or filthy strait 
passage, with alleys of small tenements, or cottages, built, inhabited 
by sailors' victuallers, along by the river of Thames, almost to Rad- 
cliff, a good mile from the Tower.' Stow, ed. Thorns, p. 157. 

The precinct was noted for its brew-houses and low drinking 
places. In The Staple of News Jonson speaks of 'an ale-wife in 
Saint Katherine's, At the Sign of the Dancing Bears' (Wks. 5. 
226). The same tavern is referred to in the Masque of Augurs as 
well as 'the brew-houses in St. Katherine's.' The sights of the place 
are enumerated in the same masque. 

The present passage seems to indicate that the precinct was largely 
inhabited by Dutch. In the Masque of Augurs Vangoose speaks a 
sort of Dutch jargon, and we know that a Flemish cemetery was 
located here (see Wh-C.). Cf. also Sir Thomas Overbury's Char 
acter of A drunken Dutchman resident in England, ed. Morley, p. 
72 : 'Let him come over never so lean, and plant him but one month 
near the brew-houses of St. Catherine's and he will be puffed up to 
your hand like a bloat herring.' Dutch weavers had been imported 
into England as early as the reign of Edward III. (see Howes, 
p. 870 a), and in the year 1563 great numbers of Netherlanders with 
their wives and children fled into England owing to the civil dis- 

The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

sension in Flanders (Howes, p. 868 a). They bore a reputation for 
hard drinking (cf. Like will to Like, O. PL 3. 325; Dekker, Non- 
dram. Wks. 3. 12; Nash, Wks. 2. 81, etc.). 

The phrase 'to take forth their patternes' is somewhat obscure, 
and seems to have been forced by the necessity for a rhyme. Halli- 
well says that 'take forth' is equivalent to 'learn,' and the phrase 
seems therefore to mean 'take their measure,' 'size them up,' with 
a view to following their example. It is possible, of course, that 
actual patterns of the Dutch weavers or tailors are referred to. 

i. i. 63 Custome-house key. This was in Tower Street on the 
Thames side. Stow (ed. Thorns, pp. 51, 2) says that the custom 
house was built in the sixth year of Richard II. Jonson mentions 
the place again in Every Man in, Wks. I. 69. 

i. i. 66 the Dagger, and the Wool-sacke. These were two 
ordinaries or public houses of low repute, especially famous for 
their pies. There were two taverns called the 'Dagger,' one in 
Holborn and one in Cheapside. It is probably to the former of 
these that Jonson refers. It is mentioned again in the Alchemist 
(Wks. 4. 24 and 165) and in Dekker's Satiromastix (Wks. i. 200). 
Hotten says that the sign of a dagger was common, and arose from 
its being a charge in the city arms. 

The Woolsack was without Aldgate. It was originally a wool- 
maker's sign. Machyn mentions the tavern in 1555 ; and it is 
alluded to in Dekker, Shoemaker's Holiday, Wks. i. 61. See Wh-C. 
and Hotten's History of Signboards, pp. 325 and 362. 

i. i. 69 Belins-gate. Stow (ed. Thorns, p. 78) describes Belins- 
gate as 'a large water-gate, port or harborough.' He mentions the 
tradition that the name was derived from that of Belin, King of the 
Britons, but discredits it. Billingsgate is on the Thames, a little 
below London Bridge, and is still the great fish-market of London. 

i. i. 70 shoot the Bridge. The waterway under the old London 
Bridge was obstructed by the narrowness of the arches, by corn- 
mills built in some of the openings, and by the great waterworks at 
its southern end. 'Of the arches left open some were too narrow 
for the passage of boats of any kind. The widest was only 36 feet, 
and the resistance caused to so large a body of water on the rise 
and fall of the tide by this contraction of its channel produced a 
fall or rapid under the bridge, so that it was necessary to "ship 
oars" to shoot the bridge, as it was called, an undertaking, to 
amateur watermen especially, not unattended with danger. "With 
the flood-tide it was impossible, and with the ebb-tide dangerous to 
pass through or shoot the arches of the bridge." In the latter case 
prudent passengers landed above the bridge, generally at the Old 
Swan Stairs, 'and walked to some wharf, generally Billingsgate, 
below it.' Wh-C. 

ACT i] Notes 135 

i. i. 70 the Cranes i' the Vintry. These were 'three strong 
cranes of timber placed on the Vintry wharf by the Thames to crane 
up wine there' (Stow, ed. Thorns, p. oo). They were situated in 
Three Cranes' lane, and near by was the famous tavern mentioned 
as one of the author's favorite resorts (Bart. Fair i. i, Wks. 4. 356). 
Jonson speaks of it again in The Silent Woman, Wks. 3. 376, and in 
the Masque of Augurs. Pepys visited the place on January 23, 1662, 
and describes the best room as 'a narrow dogg-hole' in which he 
and his friends were crammed so close "that it made me loath my 
company and victuals, and a sorry dinner it was too.' Cf. also 
Dekker, Non-dram. Wks. 3. n. 

i. i. 72 the Strand. This famous street was formerly the road 
between the cities of Westminster and London. That many lawyers 
lived in this vicinity we learn from Middleton (Father Hubburd's 
Tales, Wks. 8. 77). 

i. i. 73 Westminster-hall. It was once the hall of the King's 
palace at Westminster, originally built by William Rufus. The 
present hall was formed 1397-99. Here the early parliaments were 
held. 'This great hall hath been the usual place of pleadings, and 
ministration of justice.' Stow, ed. Thorns, p. 174. 

i. i. 75 so Veluet to Leather. Velvet seems to have been much 
worn by lawyers. Cf. Overbury, Characters, p. 72 : 'He loves his 
friend as a counsellor at law loves the velvet breeches he was first 
made barrister in.' 

i. i. 85 In his long coat, shaking his wooden dagger. See 
Introduction, pp. xxxviii f. 

i. i. 93 Cokeley. Whalley says that he was the master of a 
puppet show, and this has been accepted by all authorities (Gifford, 
ed. ; Nares, Gloss.; Alden, ed. of Bart. Fair). He seems, however, 
to have been rather an improviser like Vennor, or a mountebank with 
a gift of riming. He is mentioned several times by Jonson: Bart. 
Fair, Wks. 4. 422, 3: 'He has not been sent for, and sought out 
for nothing, at your great city-suppers, to put down Coriat and 
Cokely.' Epigr. 129 ; To Mime, Wks. 8. 229 : 

Or, mounted on a stool, thy face doth hit 
On some new gesture, that's imputed wit? 
Thou dosf out-zany Cokely, Pod; nay Cue: 
And thine own Coryat too. 

i. i. 94 Vennor. Gifford first took Vennor to be a juggler, but 
corrected his statement in the Masque of Augurs, Wks. 7. 414- He 
says: Tenner, whom I supposed to be a juggler, was a rude kind 
of improvisatore. He was altogether ignorant; but possessed a 
wonderful facility in pouring out doggrel verse. He says of himself, 

Yet, without boasting, let me boldly say 

I'll rhyme with any man that breathes this day 

Upon a subject, in extempore, etc. 

136 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

He seems to have made a wretched livelihood by frequenting city 
feasts, &c., where, at the end of the entertainment, he was called in 
to mount a stool and amuse the company by stringing together a 
number of vile rhymes upon any given subject. To this the quota 
tion alludes. Fenner is noticed by the duchess of Newcastle : "For 
the numbers every schoolboy can make them on his fingers, and for 
the rime, Fenner would put down Ben Jonson, and yet neither boy 
nor Fenner so good poets." This, too, is the person meant in the 
Cambridge answer to Corbet's satire : 

A ballad late was made, 

But God knows who the penner; 

Some say the rhyming sculler, 

And others say 'twas Fenner. p. 24. 

Fenner was so famed for his faculty of rhyming, that James, who, 
like Bartholomew Cokes, would willingly let no raree-show escape 
him, sent for him to court. Upon which Fenner added to his other 
titles that of his "Majesty's Riming Poet." This gave offense to 
Taylor, the Water poet, and helped to produce that miserable 
squabble printed among his works, and from which I have princi 
pally derived the substance of this note.' G. 

'In Richard Brome's Covcnt Garden Weeded (circ. 1638), we 
have : "Sure 'tis Fenner or his ghost. He was a riming souldier." 
(p. 42.)'-C. 

The controversy referred to may be found in the Spenser Society's 
reprint of the 1630 folio of Taylor's Works, 1869, pp. 304-325. Here 
may be gathered a few more facts regarding the life of Fenner (or 
Fennor as it should be spelled), among them that he was apprenticed 
when a boy to a blind harper. In the quarrel, it must be confessed, 
Fennor does not appear markedly inferior to his derider either in 
powers of versification or in common decency. The quarrel between 
the poets took place in October, 1614, and Fennor's admittance to 
court seems to be referred to in the present passage. 

i. i. 95 a Sheriffes dinner. This was an occasion of considerable 
extravagance. Entick (Survey I. 499) tells us that in 1543 a sump 
tuary law was passed 'to prevent luxurious eating or feasting in a 
time of scarcity; whereby it was ordained, that the lord-mayor 
should not have more than seven dishes at dinner or supper,' and 
'an alderman and sheriff no more than six.' 

i. i. 96 Skip with a rime o' the Table, from New-nothing. 
What is meant by New-nothing I do not know. From the construc 
tion it would seem to indicate the place from which the fool was 
accustomed to take his leap, but it is possible that the word should 
be connected with rime, and may perhaps be the translation of a 
Greek or Latin title for some book of facetiae published about this 

ACT i] Notes 137 

time. Such wits as Fennor and Taylor doubtless produced many 
pamphlets, the titles of which have not been recorded. In 1622 
Taylor brought out a collection of verse called 'Sir Gregory Non 
sense His Newes from no place,' and it may have been this very 
book in manuscript that suggested Jonson's title. In the play of 
King Darius, 1106, one of the actors says: 'I had rather then my 
new nothing, I were gon.' 

i. i. 97 his Almaine-leape into a custard. 'In the earlier days, 
when the city kept a fool it was customary for him at public enter 
tainments, to leap into a large bowl of custard set on purpose.' W. 
Whalley refers also to All's well that Ends Well 2. 5: 'You have 
made a shift to run into it, boots and all, like him that leapt into the 

Gifford quotes Glapthorne, Wit in a Const.: 

The custard, with the four and twenty nooks 
At my lord Mayor's feast. 

He continues : 'Indeed, no common supply was required ; for, 
besides what the Corporation (great devourers of custard) con 
sumed on the spot, it appears that it was thought no breach of city 
manners to send, or take some of it home with them for the use 
of their ladies.' In the excellent old play quoted above, Clara twits 
her uncle with this practise : 

Now shall you, sir, as 'tis a frequent custom, 
'Cause you're a worthy alderman of a ward, 
Feed me with custard, and perpetual white broth 
Sent from the lord Mayor's feast.' 

Cunningham says : 'Poets of a comparatively recent date continue 
to associate mayors and custards.' He quotes Prior (Alma, Cant, 
i) and a letter from Bishop Warburton to Hurd (Apr. 1766): 'I 
told him (the Lord Mayor) in what I thought he was defective 
that I was greatly disappointed to see no custard at table. He said 
that they had been so ridiculed for their custard that none had 
ventured to make its appearance for some years.' Jonson mentions 
the 'quaking custards' again in The Fox, Wks. 3. 164, and in The 
Staple of News, Wks. 5. 196, 7. 

An Almain-leap was a dancing leap. 'Allemands were danced 
here a few years back' (Nares). Cunningham quotes from Dyce: 
'Rabelais tells us that Gargantua "wrestled, ran, jumped, not at 
three steps and a leap, ... nor yet at the Almane's, for, said 
Gymnast, these jumps are for the wars altogether unprofitable and 
of no use." Rabelais, Book I, C. 23.' 

Bishop Barlow, Answer to a Catholike Englishman, p. 231, Lond. 
1607, says : 'Now heere the Censurer makes an Almaine leape, skip 
ping 3 whole pages together' (quoted in N. & Q. ist Ser. 10. 157). 

138 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

i. i. 97 their hoods. The French hood was still worn by citi 
zens' wives. Thus in the London Prodigal, ed. 1709: 

No Frank, I'll have thee go like a Citizen 
In a Garded Gown, and a French Hood. 

When Simon Eyre is appointed sheriff, his wife immediately 
inquires for a 'Fardingale-maker' and a 'French-hood maker' 
(Dekker, Wks. i. 39). Strutt says that French hoods were out of 
fashion by the middle of the I7th century (Antiq. 3. 93). See the 
frequent references to this article of apparel in Bart. Fair. It is 
interesting to notice that the hoods are worn at dinner. 

i. i. 106, 7. The readings of Whalley and Gifford are distinctly 
inferior to the original. 

i. i. 112, 3 Car-men Are got into the yellow starch. Starch 
was introduced in the age of Elizabeth to meet the needs of the huge 
Spanish ruff which had come into favor some years before (see Soc. 
E- n S-, P- 386)- It was frequently colored. In Middleton and Rowley's 
World Tossed at Tennis five different colored starches are personified. 
Stubbes says that it was 'of all collours and hues.' Yellow starch 
must have come into fashion not long before this play was acted, 
for in the Owle's Almanacke, published in 1618, it is said: 'Since 
yellow bandes and saffroned chaperoones came vp, is not above 
two yeeres past.' This, however, is not to be taken literally, for 
the execution of Mrs. Turner took place Nov. 14, 1615. Of her we 
read in Howell's Letters i. 2: 'Mistress Turner, the first inventress 
of yellozv Starch, was executed in a Cobweb Lawn Ruff of that 
colour at Tyburn; and with her I believe that yellow Starch, which 
so much disfigured our Nation, and rendered them so ridiculous 
and fantastic, will receive its Funeral.' Sir S. D'Ewes (Autobiog. 
i. 69) says that from that day it did, indeed, grow 'generally to be 
detested and disused.' The Vision of Sir Thomas O-verbury, 1616 
(quoted in Amos, Great Oyer, p. 50) speaks of 

that fantastic, ugly fall and ruff 

Daub'd o'er with that base starch of yellow stuff 

as already out of fashion. Its popularity must have returned, how 
ever, since Barnaby Riche in the Irish Hubbub, 1622, p. 40, laments 
that 'yellow starcht bands' were more popular than ever, and he 
prophesies that the fashion 'shortly will be as conversant amongst 
taylors, tapsters, and tinkers, as now they have brought tobacco.' 

D'Ewes also in describing the procession of King James from 
Whitehall to Westminster, Jan. 30, 1620, says that the king saw one 
window 'full of gentlewomen or ladies, all in yellow bandes,' where 
upon he called out 'A pox take yee,' and they all withdrew in shame. 

ACT i] Notes 139 

In The Parson's Wedding, printed 1664, O. PL n. 498, it is spoken 
of as out of fashion. Yellow starch is mentioned again in 5. 8. 74, 5, 
and a ballad of 'goose-green starch and the devil' is mentioned in 
Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 393. Similarly, Nash speaks in Pierce Pennilesse, 
Wks. 2. 44, of a 'Ballet of Blue starch and poaking stick.' See also 
Dodsley's note on Albumazar, O. PI. 7. 132. 

i. i. 113, 4 Chimney-sweepers To their tabacco. See the quo 
tation from Riche in the last note and note 5. 8. 71. 

i. i. 114, 5 Hum, Meath, and Obarni. Hum is defined B. E. 
Diet. Cant. Cre^v, Hum or Humming Liquor, Double Ale, Stout, 
Pharoah. It is mentioned in Fletcher's Wild Goose Chase 2. 3 
and Heywood's Drunkard, p. 48. Meath or mead is still made in 
England. It was a favorite drink in the Middle Ages, and con 
sisted of a mixture of honey and water with the addition of a 
ferment. Harrison, Description of England, ed. Furnivall, i. 161, 
thus describes it : 'There is a kind of swish swash made also in 
Essex, and diuerse other places, with honicombs and water, which 
the [homelie] countrie wiues, putting some pepper and a little other 
spice among, call mead, verie good in mine opinion for such as loue 
to be loose bodied [at large, or a little eased of the cough,] otherwise 
it differeth so much from the true metheglin, as chalke from cheese.' 

Obarni was long a crux for the editors and dictionaries. Gifford 
(Wks. 7. 226) supplied a part of the quotation from Pimlyco or 
Runne Red-Cap, 1609, completed by James Platt, Jun. (A'". & Q. 
9th Ser. 3. 306), in which 'Mead Obarne and Mead Cherunk' are 
mentioned as drinks 

that whet the spites 

Of Russes and cold Muscovites. 

Mr. Platt first instanced the existing Russian word obarni or 
obvarnyi (see Gloss.), meaning 'boiling, scalding,' and C. C. B. 
(N. & Q. 9. 3. 413) supplied a quotation from the account of the 
voyage of Sir Jerome Bowes in 1583 (Harris's Travels I. 535), in 
which 'Sodden Mead' appears among the items of diet supplied by 
the Emperor to the English Ambassador. The identification was 
completed with a quotation given by the Stanford Diet.: '1598 
Hakluyt Voy. I. 461 One veather of sodden mead called Obarni.' 

i. i. 1 19 your rope of sand. This occupation is mentioned again 
in 5. 2. 6. 

i. i. 126 Tissue gownes. Howes, p. 869, tells us that John Tuce, 
'dweling neere Shorditch Church', first attained perfection in the 
manufacture of cloth of tissue. 

i. i. 127 Garters and roses. Howes, p. 1039, says that 'at this 
day (1631) men of meane rancke weare Garters, and shooe Roses, 
of more than fiue pound price.' Massinger, in the City Madam, 

140 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

Wks., p. 334, speaks of 'roses worth a family.' Cf. also John 
Taylor's Works, 1630 (quoted in Hist. Brit. Cost.) : 

Weare a farm in shoe-strings edged with gold 
And spangled garters worth a copyhold. 

i. i. 128 Embroydred stockings. 'Then haue they nether-stocks 
to these gay hosen, not of cloth (though neuer so fine) for that is 
thought to base, but of larnsey worsted, silk, thred, and such like, 
or els at the least of the finest yarn that can be, and so curiouslye 
knit with open seam down the leg, with quirks and clocks about the 
ancles, and sometime (haply) interlaced with gold or siluer threds, 
as is wonderful to behold.' Stubbes, Anat., Part I, p. 57. The selling 
of stockings was a separate trade at this time, and great attention 
was paid to this article of clothing. Silk stockings are frequently 
mentioned by the dramatists. Cf. Stephen Gosson, Pleasant 

These worsted stockes of bravest die, and silken garters 

fring'd with gold; 
These corked shooes to beare them hie makes them to 

trip it on the molde; 
They mince it with a pace so strange, 
Like untam'd heifers when they range. 

i. i. 128 cut-worke smocks, and shirts. Cf. B. & Fl., Four 
Plays in One: 

She show'd me gownes, head tires, 

Embroider'd waistcoats, smocks seamed with cutworks. 

i. i. 135 But you must take a body ready made. King James 
in his Dcemonologie (Wks., ed. 1616, p. 120) explains that the devil, 
though but of air, can 'make himself palpable, either by assuming 
any dead bodie, and vsing the ministerie thereof, or else by deluding 
as well their sence of feeling as seeing.' 

i. i. 143 our tribe of Brokers. Cf. Ev. Man in, Wks. I. 82: 

Wei. Where got'st thou this coat, I marie? 

Brai. Of a Hounsditch man, sir, one of the devil's near kinsmen, 
a broker.' 

The pawnbrokers were cordially hated in Jonson's time. Their 
quarter was Houndsditch. Stow says : 'there are crept in among 
them [the inhabitants of Houndsditch] a base kinde of vermine, 
wel-deserving to bee ranked and numbred with them, whom our old 
Prophet and Countryman, Gyldas, called JEtatis atramentum, the 
black discredit of the Age, and of place where they are suffered to 
live. . . . These men, or rather monsters in the shape of men, 
professe to live by lending, and yet will lend nothing but upon 
pawnes;' etc. 

ACT i] Notes 


Nash speaks of them in a similar strain: 'Fruits shall be greatly 
eaten with Catterpillers ; as Brokers, Farmers and Flatterers, which 
feeding on the sweate of other mens browes, shall greatlye hinder 
the beautye of the spring.' Prognostication, Wks. 2. 145. 'They 
shall crie out against brokers, as Jeremy did against false prophets.' 
Ibid. 2. 162. 

i. i. 148 as you make your soone at nights relation. Cf. 
Dekker, Satiromastix, Wks. I. 187: 'Shee'l be a late sturrer soone 
at night sir,' and ibid. 223 : 

By this faire Bride remember soone at night. 

i. 2. i ff. I, they doe, now, etc. 'Compare this exquisite piece 
of sense, satire, and sound philosophy in 1616 with Sir M. Hale's 
speech from the bench in a trial of a witch many years afterwards.' 
Coleridge, Notes, p. 280. 

i. 2. i Bretnor. An almanac maker (fl. 1607-1618). A list of 
his works, compiled from the catalogue of the British Museum, is 
given in the DNB. He is mentioned twice by Middleton: 

This farmer will not cast his seed i' the ground 
Before he look in Bretnor. 

Inner-Temple Masque, Wks. 7. 211. 

'Chough. I'll not be married to-day, Trimtram: hast e'er an 
almanac about thee? this is the nineteenth of August, look what 
day of the month 'tis. 

Trim. 'Tis tenty-nine indeed, sir. [Looks in an almanac. 

Chough. What's the word? What says Bretnor? 

Trim. The word is, sir, There's a hole in her coat.' 
Middleton, A Fair Quarrel, Wks. 4. 263. 

Fleay identifies him with Norbret, one of the astrologers in 
Beaumont and Fletcher's Rollo, Duke of Normandy. 

i. 2. 2 Gresham. A pretended astrologer, contemporary with 
Forman, and said to be one of the associates of the infamous 
Countess of Essex and Mrs. Turner in the murder of Sir Thomas 
Overbury. Arthur Wilson mentions him in The Life of James I., 
p. 70: 

'Mrs. Turner, the Mistris of the Work, had lost both her supporters. 
Forman, her first prop, drop't away suddenly by death; and 
Gresham another rotten Engin (that succeded him) did not hold 
long: She must now bear up all her self.' 

He is mentioned twice in Spark's Narrative History of King 
James, Somer's Tracts 2. 275: 'Dr. Forman being dead, Mrs. 
Turner wanted one to assist her; whereupon, at the countesses 
coming to London, one Gresham was nominated to be entertained 
in this businesse, and, in processe of time, was wholly interested in 

142 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

it ; this man was had in suspition to have had a hand in the Gun 
powder plot, he wrote so near it in his almanack ; but, without all 
question, he was a very skilful man in the mathematicks, and, in 
his latter time, in witchcraft, as was suspected, and therefore the 
fitter to bee imployed in those practises, which, as they were devilish, 
so the devil had a hand in them.' 

Ibid. 287 : 'Now Gresharh growing into years, having spent much 
time in many foule practises to accomplish those things at this time, 
gathers all his babies together, viz. pictures in lead, in wax, in plates 
of gold, of naked men and women with crosses, crucifixes, and other 
implements, wrapping them all up together in a scarfe, crossed 
every letter in the sacred word Trinity, crossed these things very 
holily delivered into the hands of one Weston to bee hid in the 
earth that no man might find them, and so in Thames-street having 
finished his evill times he died, leaving behind him a man and a 
maid, one hanged for a witch, and the other for a thief very shortly 

In the 'Heads of Charges against Robert, Earl of Somerset', 
drawn up by Lord Bacon, we read: 'That the countess laboured 
Forman and Gresham to inforce the Queen by witchcraft to favour 
the countess' (Howell's State Trials 2. 966). To this King James 
replied in an 'Apostyle/ Nothing to Somerset. This exhausts the 
references to Gresham that I have been able to find. See note on 
Savory, I. 2. 3. 

i. 2. 2. Fore-man. Simon Foreman, or Forman (1552-1611) was 
the most famous of the group of quacks here mentioned. He 
studied at Oxford, 1573-1578, and in 1579 began his career as a 
necromancer. He claimed the power to discover lost treasure, and 
was especially successful in his dealings with women. A detailed 
account of his life is given in the DNB. and a short but interesting 
sketch in Social England 4. 87. The chief sources are Wm. Lilly's 
History and a diary from 1564 to 1602, with an account of Forman's 
early life, published by Mr. J. O. Halliwell-Phillipps for the Camden 
Soc., 1843. 

He is mentioned again by Jonson in Silent Woman, Wks. 3. 413 : 
'Daup. I would say, thou hadst the best philtre in the world, and 
couldst do more than Madam Medea, or Doctor Foreman.' In Sir 
Thomas Overbury's Vision (Harl. Ms., vol. 7, quoted in D'Ewes' 
Autobiog., p. 89) he is spoken of as 'that fiend in human shape.' 

i. 2. 3 Francklin. Francklin was an apothecary, and procured 
the poison for Mrs. Turner (see Amos, Great Oyer, p. 97). He was 
one of the three persons executed with Mrs. Turner. Arthur Wil 
son, in his Life of James I. (p. 70), describes him as 'a swarthy, 
sallow, crooked-backt fellow, who was to be the Fountain whence 
these bitter waters came.' See also Somer's Tracts 2. 287. The 
poem already quoted furnishes a description of Francklin: 

ACT i] Notes 143 

A man he was of stature meanly tall, 
His body's lineaments were shaped, and all 
His limbs compacted well, and strongly knit, 
Nature's kind hand no error made in it. 
His beard was ruddy hue, and from his head 
A wanton lock itself did down dispread 
Upon his back; to which while he did live 
Th' ambiguous name of Elf-lock he did give. 

Quoted in Amos, p. 50. 

i. 2. 3 Fiske. 'In this year 1633, I became acquainted with 
Nicholas Fiske, licentiate in physick, who was borne in Suffolk, 
near Framingham [Framlingham] Castle, of very good parentage. 
. .' . He was a person very studious, laborious, and of good 
apprehension. ... He was exquisitely skilful in the art of direc 
tions upon nativities, and had a good genius in performing judgment 
thereupon. ... He died about the seventy-eighth year of his 
age, poor.' Lilly, Hist., p. 42 f. 

Fiske appears as La Fiske in Rollo, Duke of Normandy, and is 
also mentioned by Butler, Hudibr., Part 2, Cant. 3. 403 : 

And nigh an ancient obelisk 

Was rais'd by him, found out by Fisk. 

i. 2. 3 Sauory. 'And therefore, she fearing that her lord would 
seek some public or private revenge against her, by the advice of 
the before-mentioned Mrs. Turner, consulted and practised with 
Doctor Forman and Doctor Savory, two conjurers, about the poison 
ing of him.' D'Ewes, Autobiog. i. 88, 9. 

He was employed after the sudden death of Dr. Forman. Wright 
(Sorcery and Magic, p. 228) says that the name is written Lavoire 
in some manuscripts. 'Mrs. Turner also confessed, that Dr. Sav 
ories was used in succession, after Forman, and practised many 
sorceries upon the Earle of Essex his person.' Spark, Narrative 
History, Somer's Tracts 2. 333. 

In the Calendar of State Papers the name of 'Savery' appears 
four times. Under date of Oct. 16, 1615, we find Dr. Savery 
examined on a charge of 'spreading Popish Books.' 'Savery pre 
tends to be a doctor, but is probably a conjurer.' And again under 
the same date he is interrogated as to his relations with Mrs. Turner 
and Forman. Under Oct. 24 he replies to Coke. 'Oct. ?' we -find 
Dr. Savery questioned as to his 'predictions of troubles and altera 
tions in Court.' This is the last mention of him. 

Just what connection Gresham and Savory had with the Overbury 
plot is a difficult matter to determine. Both are spoken of as fol 
lowing Forman immediately, and of neither is any successor men 
tioned except the actual poisoner, Franklin. It seems probable that 
Gresham was the first to be employed after Forman, and that his 

144 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

own speedy death led to the selection of Savory. How the latter 
managed to escape a more serious implication in the trial it is diffi 
cult to conceive. 

i. 2. 6-9 christalls, . . . characters. As in other fields, Jon- 
son is well versed in magic lore. Lumps of crystal were one of the 
regular means of raising a demon. Bk. 15, Ch. 16 of Scot's Dis 
covery of Witchcraft, 1584, is entitled: 'To make a spirit appear in 
a christall', and Ch. 12 shows 'How to enclose a spirit in a christall 

Lilly (History, p. 78) speaks of the efficacy of 'a constellated 
ring' in sickness, and they were doubtless considered effective in 
more sinister dealings. Jonson has already spoken of the devil 
being carried in a thumb-ring (see note P. 6). 

Charms were usually written on parchment. In Barrett's Magus, 
Bk. 2, Pt. 3. 109, we read that the pentacle should be drawn 'upon 
parchment made of a kid-skin, or virgin, or pure clean white paper.' 

That parts of the human body belonged to the sorcerer's para 
phernalia is shown by the Statute I Jac. I, c. xii, which contains a 
clause forbidding conjurors to 'take up any dead man woman or 
child out of his her or their grave ... or the skin bone or any 
other parte of any dead person, to be imployed or used in any 
manner of Witchcrafte Sorcerie Charme or Inchantment.' 

The wing of the raven, as a bird of ill omen, may be an invention 
of Jonson's own. The lighting of candles within the magic circle is 
mentioned below (note i. 2. 26). 

Most powerful of all was the pentacle, of which Scot's Discovery 
(Ap. II, p. 533, 4) furnishes an elaborate description. This figure 
* was used by the Pythagorean school as their seal, and is equivalent 
to the pentagram or five-pointed star (see CD.). 

Dekker (Wks. 2. 200) connects it with the Periapt as a 'potent 
charm,' and Marlowe speaks of it in Hero and Leander, Wks. 3. 45 : 

A rich disparent pentacle she wears, 

Drawn full of circles and strange characters. 

It will be remembered that the inscription of a pentagram on the 
threshold prevents the escape of Mephistopheles in Goethe's Faust. 
The editors explain its potency as due to the fact that it is resolvable 
into three triangles, and is thus a triple sign of the Trinity. 

Cunningham says that the pentacle 'when delineated upon the 
body of a man was supposed to point out the five wounds of the 
Saviour.' W. J. Thorns (Anecdotes, Camden Soc., 1839, p. 97) 
speaks of its presence in the western window of the southern aisle 
of Westminster Abbey, an indication that the monks were versed 
in occult science. 

ACT i] Notes 145 

i. 2. 21 If they be not. Gifford refers to Chrysippus, De Divina- 
tione, Lib. I. 71 : 'This is the very syllogism by which that acute 
philosopher triumphantly proved the reality of augury.' 

i. 2. 22 Why, are there lawes against 'hem? It was found 
necessary in 1541 to pass an act (33 Hen. VIII. c. 8) by which 'it 
shall be felony to practise, or cause to be practised conjuration, 
witchcrafte, enchantment, or sorcery, to get money: or to consume 
any person in his body, members or goods ; or to provoke any 
person to unlawful love; or for the despight of Christ, or lucre of 
money, to pull down any cross ; or to declare where goods stolen 
be.' Another law was passed I Edward VI. c. 12 (1547). 5 Eliza 
beth, c. 16 (1562) gives the 'several penalties of conjuration, or 
invocation of wicked spirits, and witchcraft, enchantment, charm or 
sorcery.' Under Jas. I, anno secundo (vulgo primo), c. 12, still 
another law was passed, whereby the second offense was declared 
a felony. The former act of Elizabeth was repealed. This act of 
James was not repealed until 9 George II. c. 5. 

Social England, p. 270, quotes from Ms. Lansdowne, 2. Art. 26, 
a deposition from William Wicherley, conjurer, in which he places 
the number of conjurers in England in 1549 above five hundred. A 
good idea of the character of the more disreputable type of conjurer 
can be got from Beaumont and Fletcher's Fair Maid of the Inn. 
See especially Act 5. Sc. 2. 

i. 2. 26 circles. The magic circle is one of the things most 
frequently mentioned among the arts of the conjurer. Scot (Dis 
covery, p. 476) has a long satirical passage on the subject, in which 
he enjoins the conjurer to draw a double circle with his own blood, 
to divide the circle into seven parts and to set at each division a 
'candle lighted in a brazen candlestick.' 

i. 2. 27 his hard names. A long list of the 'diverse names of 
the divell' is given in The Discovery, p. 436, and another in the 
Second Appendix, p. 522. 

i. 2. 31, 2 I long for thee. An' I were with child by 
him, ... I could not more. The expression is common 
enough. Cf. Eastward Hoe: 'Ger. As I am a lady, I think I am 
with child already, I long for a coach so.' Dekker, Shomakers 
Holiday, Wks. i. 17: 'I am with child till I behold this huffecap.' 
The humors of the longing wife are a constant subject of ridicule. 
See Bart. Fair, Act i, and Butler's Hudibras, ed. 1819, 3- 78 and note. 

i. 2. 39 A thousand miles. 'Neither are they so much limited 
as Tradition would have them; for they are not at all shut_ up in 
any separated place: but can remove millions of miles in the 
twinkling of an eye.' Scot, Discovery, Ap. II, p. 493- 

i. 2. 43 The burn't child dreads the fire. Jonson is fond of 
proverbial expressions. Cf. I. 6. 125; I. 6. 1455 5- 8. 142, 3, etc. 

146 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

i. 3- 5 while things be reconcil'd. In Elizabethan English both 
while and whiles often meant 'up to the time when', as well as 
'during the time when' (cf. a similar use of 'dum' in Latin and of 
t wj in Greek). Abbot, 137. 

For its frequent use in this sense in Shakespeare see Schmidt and 
note on Macbeth 3. i. 51, Furness's edition. Cf. also Nash, Prog 
nostication, Wks. 2. 150: 'They shall ly in their beds while noon.' 

i. 3. 8, 9 those roses Were bigge inough to hide a clouen 
foote. Dyce (Remarks, p. 289) quotes Webster, White Devil, 1612 : 

why, 'tis the devil; 

I know him by a great rose he wears on's shoe, 
To hide his cloven foot. 

Cunningham adds a passage from Chapman, Wks. 3. 145 : 

Fro. Yet you cannot change the old fashion (they say) 
And hide your cloven feet. 

Oph. No! I can wear roses that shall spread quite 
Over them. 

Gifford quotes Nash, Unfortunate Traveller, Wks. 5. 146: 'Hee 
hath in eyther shoo as much taffaty for his tyings, as would serue 
for an ancient.' Cf. also Dekker, Roaring Girle, Wks. 3. 200 : 'Haue 
not many handsome legges in silke stockins villanous splay feet for 
all their great roses?' 

i. 3. 13 My Cater. Whalley changes to 'm'acter' on the author 
ity of the Sad Shep. (vol. 4. 236) : 

Go bear 'em in to Much 
Th' acater. 

The form 'cater', however, is common enough. Indeed, if we 
are to judge from the examples in Nares and NED., it is much 
the more frequent, although the present passage is cited in both 
authorities under the longer form. 

i. 3. 21 I'le hearken. W. and G. change to 'I'd.' The change 
is unnecessary if we consider the conditional clause as an after 
thought on the part of Fitzdottrel. For a similar construction see 
3. 6. 34-6. 

i. 3. 27 Vnder your fauour, friend, for, I'll not quarrell. "This 
was one of the qualifying expressions, by which, "according to the 
laws of the duello", the lie might be given, without subjecting the 
speaker to the absolute necessity of receiving a challenge.' G. 

Leigh uses a similar expression. Cf. note 2. i. 144. It occurs 
several times in Ev. Man in: 

'Step. Yet, by his leave, he is a rascal, under his favour, do you 

E. Know. Ay, by his leave, he is, and under favour: a pretty 
piece of civility!' Wks. i. 68. 

ACT i] Notes 147 

'Down. 'Sdeath ! you will not draw then? 

Bob. Hold, hold! under thy favour forbear!' Wks. i. 117. 

'Clem. Now, sir, what have you to say to me? 

Bob. By your worship's favour .' Wks. i. 140. 

I have not been able to confirm Gifford's assertion. 

i. 3. 30 that's a popular error. Gifford refers to Othello 5. 
2. 286 : 

Oth. I look down towards his feet, but that's a fable. 
If that thou be'st a devil, I cannot kill thee. 

Cf . also The Virgin Martyr, Dekker's Wks. 4. 57 : 

lie tell you what now of the Divel; 
He's no such horrid creature, cloven footed, 
Black, saucer-ey'd, his nostrils breathing fire, 
As these lying Christians make him. 

* 3- 34 Of Derby-shire, S r . about the Peake. Jonson seems to 
have been well acquainted with the wonders of the Peak of Derby 
shire. Two of his masques, The Gipsies Metamorphosed, acted first 
at Burleigh on the Hill, and later at Belvoir, Nottinghamshire, and 
Love's Welcome at Welbeck, acted in 1633 at Welbeck, Nottingham 
shire, the seat of William Cavendish, Earl of Newcastle, are full 
of allusions to them. The Devil's Arse seems to be the cavern now 
known to travellers as the Peak or Devil's Cavern. It is described 
by Baedeker as upwards of 2,000 feet in extent. One of its features 
is a subterranean river known as the Styx. The origin of the 
cavern's name is given in a coarse song in the Gypsies Met. (Wks. 
7- 357). beginning: 

Cocklorrel would needs have the Devil his guest, 
And bade him into the Peak to dinner. 

In Love's Welcome Jonson speaks again of 'Satan's sumptuous 
Arse', Wks. 8. 122. 

i- 3- 34, 5- That Hole. 

Belonged to your Ancestors? Jonson frequently omits the 
relative pronoun. Cf. i. 5- 21; i. 6. 86, 87; 3- 3- I49J 5- 8. 86, 87. 

i. 3. 38 Foure pound a yeere. 'This we may suppose to have 
been the customary wages of a domestic servant.' C. Cunningham 
cites also the passage in the Alchemist, Wks. 4. 12; 'You were 
once ... the good, Honest, plain, livery-three-pound-thrum, 
that kept Your master's worship's house,' in which he takes the 
expression 'three-pound' to be the equivalent of 'badly-paid'. 

i. 4. i I'll goe lift him. Jonson is never tired of punning on 
the names of his characters. 

i. 4. 5 halfe a piece. 'It may be necessary to observe, once for 
all, that the piece (the double sovereign) went for two and twenty 

148 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

shillings.' G. Compare 3. 3. 83, where a hundred pieces is evidently 
somewhat above a hundred pounds. By a proclamation, Nov. 23, 
1611, the piece of gold called the Unitie, formerly current at twenty 
shillings was raised to the value of twenty two shillings (S. M. 
Leake, Eng. Money 2. 276). Taylor, the water-poet, tells us that. 
Jonson gave him 'a piece of gold of two and twenty shillings to 
drink his health in England' (Conversations, quoted in Schelling's 
Timber, p. 105). In the Busie Body Mrs. Centlivre uses piece as 
synonymous with guinea (2d ed., pp. 7 and 14). 

i. 4. 31 lust what it list. Jonson makes frequent use of the 
subjunctive. Cf. i. 3. 9; i. 6. 6; 5. 6. 10; etc. 

i. 4. 43 O here's the bill, S r . Collier says that the use of play 
bills was common prior to the year 1563 (Strype, Life of Grindall, 
ed. 1821, p. 122). They are mentioned in Histriomastix, 1610; A 
Warning for Fair Women, 1599, etc. See Collier, Annals 3. 382 f. 

i. 4. 50 a rotten Crane. Whalley restores the right reading, 
correctly explained as a pun on Ingine's name. 

i. 4. 60 Good time! Apparently a translation of the Fr. A la 
bonne heure, 'very good', 'well done !' etc. 

i. 4. 65 The good mans gravity. Cf. Homer, //., r 105: 

Shak., Tempest 5. i : 'First, noble friend, let me embrace thine age.' 
Catiline 3. 2. : 'Trouble this good shame (good and modest lady) 
no farther.' 

i. 4. 70 into the shirt. Cf. Dekker, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 244: 
'Dice your selfe into your shirt.' 

i. 4. 71 Keepe warme your wisdome? Cf. Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 
241 : 'Madam, your whole self cannot but be perfectly wise; for 
your hands have wit enough to keep themselves warm.' Gifford's 
note on this passage is : 'This proverbial phrase is found in most 
(sic) of our ancient dramas. Thus in The Wise Woman of Hogs- 
den: "You are the wise woman, are you? You have wit to keep 
yourself warm enough, I warrant you" '. Cf . also Lusty Juventus, 
p. 74 : 'Cover your head ; For indeed you have need to keep in your 
wit.' . 

i. 4. 72 You lade me. This is equivalent to the modern phrase, 
you do not spare me. You lay what imputations you please upon 
me.' G. 

The phrase occurs again in i. 6. 161, where Wittipol calls Fitz- 
dottrel an ass, and says that he cannot 'scape his lading'. 'You 
lade me', then, seems to mean 'You make an ass of me'. The same 
use of the word occurs in Dekker, Olde Fortunatus, Wks. i. 125: 
'I should serue this bearing asse rarely now, if I should load him'. 
And again in the works of Taylor, the Water Poet, p. 311 : 'My 

ACT i] Notes 149 

Lines shall load an Asse, or whippe an Ape.' Cf. also Bart. Fair, 
Wks. 4. 421 : 'Yes, faith, I have my lading, you see, or shall have 
anon ; you may know whose beast I am by my burden.' 

i. 4. 83, 4 But, not beyond, 

A minute, or a second, looke for. The omission of the comma 
after beyond by all the later editors destroys the sense. Fitzdottrel 
does not mean that Wittipol cannot have 'beyond a minute', but that 
he cannot have a minute beyond the quarter of an hour allowed him. 

i. 4. 96 Migniard. 'Cotgrave has in his dictionary, "Mignard 
migniard, prettie, quaint, neat, feat, wanton, dainty, delicate." In 
the Staple of News [Wks. 5. 221] Jonson tries to introduce the 
substantive migniardise, but happily without success.' G. 

i. 4. 101 Prince Quintilian. The reputation of this famous rhe 
torician (c 35-c 97 A. D.) is based on his great work entitled De 
Institutione Oratorio Libri XII. The first English edition seems 
to have been made in 1641, but many Continental editions had pre 
ceded it. The title Prince seems to be gratuitous on Jonson's part. 
He is mentioned again in Timber (ed. Schelling, 57. 29 and 81. 4). 

i. 5. 2 Cf. New Inn, Wks. 5. 323 : 

'Host. What say you, sir? where are you, are you within? 

(Strikes LOVEL on the breast.)' 

i. 5. 8, 9. Old Africk, and the new America, 

With all their fruite of Monsters. Cf. Donne, Sat., 
Wks. 2. 190 (ed. 1896) : 


Than Afric's monsters, Guiana's rarities. 

Brome, Queen's Exchange, Wks. 3. 483: 'What monsters are bred 
in Affrica?' Glapthorne, Hollander, Wks., 1874, i. 81 : 'If Africke 
did produce no other monsters,' etc. The people of London at this 
time had a great thirst for monsters. See Alden, Bart. Fair, p. 185, 
and Morley, Memoirs of Bartholomew Fair. 

i. 5. 17 for hidden treasure. 'And when he is appeared, bind 
him with the bond of the dead above written : then saie as followeth. 
I charge thee N. by the father, to shew me true visions in this 
christall stone, if there be anie treasure hidden in such a place N. 
& wherein it now lieth, and how manie foot from this peece of 
earth, east, west, north, or south.' Scot, Discovery, p. 355- 

Most of the conjurers pretended to be able to recover stolen 
treasure. The laws against conjurers (see note i. 2. 6) contained 
clauses forbidding the practice. 

i. 5. 21 his men of Art. A euphemism for conjurer. Cf. B. & 
Fl., Fair Maid of the Inn 2. 2 : 

'Host. Thy master, that lodges here in my Osteria, is a rare man 
of art ; they say he's a witch. 

150 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

Clown. A witch? Nay, he's one step of the ladder to preferment 
higher; he's a conjurer.' 

i. 6. 10 wedlocke. Wife ; a common latinism of the period. 

i. 6. 14 it not concernes thee? A not infrequent word-order in 
Jonson. Cf. 4. 2. 22. 

i. 6. 18 a Niaise. Gifford says that the side note 'could scarcely 
come from Jonson; for it explains nothing. A niaise (or rather 
an eyas, of which it is a corruption) is unquestionably a young hawk, 
but the niaise of the poet is the French term for, "a simple, witless, 
inexperienced gull", &c. The word is very common in our old 

The last statement is characteristic of Gifford. It would have 
been well in this case if he had given some proof of his assertion. 
The derivation an eyasy a nyas is probably incorrect. The Cen 
tury Dictionary gives 'Niaise, nyas (and corruptly eyas, by mis- 
division of a mas').' The best explanation I can give of the side 
note is this. The glossator takes the meaning 'simpleton' for 
granted. But Fitzdottrel has just said 'Laught at, sweet bird?' 
In explanation the side note is added. This, perhaps, does not help 
matters much, and, indeed, I am inclined to believe with Gifford that 
the side notes are by another hand than Jonson's. See Introduction, 
pp. xiii, xvii. 

i. 6. 29, 30. When I ha' scene 

All London in't, and London has seene mee. Gifford com 
pares Pope : 

Europe he saw, and Europe saw him too. 

i. 6. 31 Black-fryers Play-house. This famous theatre was 
founded by James Burbage in 1596-7. The Burbages leased it to 
Henry Evans for the performances of the Children of the Chapel, 
and the King's Servants acted there after the departure of the chil 
dren. In 1619 the Lord Mayor and the Council of London ordered 
its discontinuance, but the players were able to keep it open on the 
plea that it was a private house. In 1642 'public stage plays' were 
suppressed, and on Aug. 5, 1655, Blackfriars Theatre was pulled 
down and tenements were built in its place. See Wh-C. 

Nares, referring to Shirley's Six New Playes, 1653, says that 'the 
Theatre of Black-Friars was, in Charles I.'s time at least considered, 
as being of a higher order and more respectability than any of those 
on the Bank-side.' 

i. 6. 33 Rise vp between the Acts. See note 3. 5. 43. 

i. 6. 33, 4 let fall my cloake, 

Publish a handsome man, and a rich suite. The gallants of this 
age were inordinately fond of displaying their dress, or 'publishing 
their suits.' The play-house and 'Paul's Walk,' the nave of St. 

ACT i] 


Paul's Cathedral, were favorite places for accomplishing this. The 
fourth chapter of Dekker's Guls Horne-booke is entitled 'How a 
Gallant should behaue himselfe in Powles walkes.' He bids the 
gallant make his way directly into the middle aisle, 'where, in view 
of all, you may publish your suit in what manner you affect most, 
either with the slide of your cloake from the one shoulder, and then 
you must (as twere in anger) suddenly snatch at the middle of the 
inside (if it be taffata at the least) and so by that meanes your 
costly lining is betrayd,' etc. A little later on (Non-dram. Wks. 
2. 238) Dekker speaks of 'Powles, a Tennis-court, or a Playhouse' 
as a suitable place to 'publish your clothes.' Cf. also Non-dram. 
Wks. 4. 51. 

Sir Thomas Overbury gives the following description of 'a Phan- 
tastique :' 'He withers his clothes on a stage as a salesman is 
forced to do his suits in Birchin Lane; and when the play is done, 
if you mark his rising, 'tis with a kind of walking epilogue between 
the two candles, to know if his suit may pass for current.' Morley, 

p. 73- 

Stephen Gosson (School of Abuse, p. 29) says that 'overlashing 
in apparel is so common a fault, that the verye hyerlings of some of 
our plaiers, which stand at reversion of vi 8 by the weeke, jet under 
gentlemens noses in sutes of silke.' 

i. 6. 37, 8 For, they doe come 

To see vs, Loue, as wee doe to see them. Cf. Induction to The 
Staple of News, Wks. 5. 151: 'Yes, on the stage; we are persons 
of quality, I assure you, and women of fashion, and come to see 
and to be seen.' Silent Woman, Wks. 3. 409: 'and come abroad 
where the matter is frequent, to court, . .,-.. to plays, . . , 
thither they come to shew their new tires too, to see, and to be seen.' 
Massinger, City Madam, Wks., p. 323 : 

Sir. Maur. Is there aught else 
To be demanded? 

Anne. ... a fresh habit, 
Of a fashion never seen before, to draw, 
The gallants' eyes, that sit upon the stage, upon me. 

Gosson has much to say on the subject of women frequenting the 
theatre. There, he says (p. 25), 'everye man and his queane are 
first acquainted;' and he earnestly recommends all women to stay 
away from these 'places of suspition' (pp. 48 f.). 

i. 6. 40 Yes, wusse. Wusse is a corruption of wis, OE. gewis, 
certainly. Jonson uses the forms / wuss (Wks. I. 102), / wusse 
(Wks. 6. 146), and Iwisse (Wks. 2. 379, the fol. reading; Gifford 
changing to / wiss~), in addition to the present form. In some cases 
the word is evidently looked upon as a verb. 

152 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

i. 6. 58 sweet Pinnace. Cf. 2. 2. in f. A woman is often 
compared to a ship. Nares cites B. & Fl., Woman's Pr. 2. 6 : 

This pinck, this painted foist, this cockle-boat. 

Cf. also Stop, of News, Wks. 5. 210 : 

She is not rigg'd, sir; setting forth some lady 
Will cost as much as furnishing a fleet. 
Here she is come at last, and like a galley 
Gilt in the prow. 

Jonson plays on the names of Pinnacia in the New Inn, Wks. 5. 384: 

'Host. Pillage the Pinnace. . . ; 

Lord B. Blow off her upper deck. 

Lord L. Tear all her tackle.' 

Pinnace, when thus applied to a woman, was almost always used 
with a conscious retention of the metaphor. Dekker is especially 
fond of the word. Match me in London, Wks. 4. 172 : 

There's a Pinnace 

(Was mann'd out first by th' City), is come to th' Court, 
New rigg'd. 

Also Dekker, Wks. 4. 162 ; 3. 67, 77, 78. 

When the word became stereotyped into an equivalent for pro 
curess or prostitute, the metaphor was often dropped. Thus in 
Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 386: 'She hath been before me, punk, pinnace 
and bawd, any time these two and twenty years.' Gifford says 
on this passage: 'The usual gradation in infamy. A pinnace was 
a light vessel built for speed, generally employed as a tender. Hence 
our old dramatists constantly used the word for a person employed 
in love messages, a go-between in the worst sense, and only differing 
from a bawd in not being stationary.' A glance at the examples 
given above will show, however, that the term was much more 
elastic than this explanation would indicate. 

The dictionaries give no suggestion of the origin of the metaphor. 
I suspect that it may be merely a borrowing from classical usage. 
Cf . Menaechmi 2. 3. 442 : 

Ducit lembum dierectum nauis praedatoria. 

In Miles Gloriosus 4. i. 986, we have precisely the same application 
as in the English dramatists: 'Haec celox (a swift sailing vessel) 
illiust, quae hinc agreditur, internuntia.' 

i. 6. 62 th' are right. Whalley's interpretation is, of course, cor 
rect. See variants. 

i. 6. 73 Not beyond that rush. Rushes took the place of carpets 
in the days of Elizabeth. Shakespeare makes frequent reference to 
the custom (see Schmidt). The following passage from Dr. Bui- 

ACT i] 



leyne has often been quoted : 'Rushes that grow upon dry groundes 
be good to strew in halles, chambers and galleries, to walk upon, 
defending apparel, as traynes of gownes and kertles from dust.' 
Cf . also Cyn. Rev. 2. 5 ; Every Man out 3. 3. 

i. 6. 83 As wise as a Court Parliament. Jonson refers here, I 
suppose, to the famous Courts or Parliaments of Love, which were 
supposed to have existed during the Middle Ages (cf. Skeat, 
Chaucer's Works 7. Ixxx). 

Cunningham calls attention to the fact that Massinger's Parliament 
of Love was not produced until 1624. Jonson depicts a sort of mock 
Parliament of Love in the New Inn, Act 4. 

i. 6. 88 And at all caracts. 'I. e., to the nicest point, to the 
minutest circumstance.' G. See Gloss, and cf. Every Man in, Wks. 
i. 70. 

i. 6. 89, 90 as scarce hath soule, In stead of salt. Whalley 
refers to Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 446, 7 : 'Talk of him to have a soul ! 
'heart, if he have any more than a thing given him instead of salt, 
only to keep him from stinking, I'll be hang'd afore my time.' 
Gifford quotes the passage from B. & Fl., Spanish Curate: 

this soul I speake of, 

Or rather salt, to keep this heap of flesh 
From being a walking stench. 

W. furnishes a Latin parallel: 'Sus vero quid habet praeter escam? 
cui quidem, ne putresceret, animam ipsam pro sale datam dicit esse 
Chrysippus.' Cic. De Natura Dear, lib. 2. 

It is to these passages that Carlyle refers in his Past and Present : 
'A certain degree of soul, as Ben Jonson reminds us, is indispensable 
to keep the very body from destruction of the frightfulest sort; 
to 'save us,' says he, 'the expense of salt.' Bk. 2, Ch. 2. 

'In our and old Jonson's dialect, man has lost the soul out of 
him; and now, after the due period, begins to find the want of 
it. ... Man has lost his soul, and vainly seeks antiseptic salt.' 
(Simpson in N. & Q., gth Ser. 4. 347, 423.) 

To the same Latin source Professor Cook (Mod. Lang. Notes, 
Feb., 1905) attributes the passage in Rabbi Ben Ezra 43-45: 

What is he but a brute 

Whose flesh has soul to suit, 

Whose spirit works lest arms and legs want play? 

and Samuel Johnson's 'famous sentence recorded by Boswell 
under June 19, 1784 : "Talking of the comedy of The Rehearsal, he 
said : 'It has not wit enough to keep it sweet.' " 

i. 6. 97 the walks of Lincolnes Inne. One of the famous Inns 
of Court (note 3. i. 8). It formerly pertained to the Bishops of 
Chichester (Stow, Survey, ed. 1633, p. 4883). The gardens 'were 

154 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT i 

famous until the erection of the hall, by which they were curtailed 
and seriously injured' (Wh-C). The Tatler (May 10, 1709, no. 
13) speaks of Lincoln's Inn Walks. 

i. 6. 99 I did looke for this geere. See variants. Cunningham 
says : 'In the original it is geere, and so it ought still to stand. Gear 
was a word with a most extended signification. Nares defines it, 
"matter, subject, or business in general !" When Jonson uses the 
word jeer he spells it quite differently. The Staple of News was 
first printed at the same time as the present play, and in the begin 
ning of Act IV. Sc. i, I find: "Fit. Let's ieere a little. 
Pen. Ieere? what's that?" ' 

It is so spelt regularly throughout The Staple of News, but in 
Ev. Man in I. 2 (fol. 1616), we find: 'Such- petulant, geering 
gamsters that can spare No . . . subject from their jest.' The 
fact is that both words were sometimes spelt geere, as well as in a 
variety of other ways. The uniform spelling in The Staple of 
News, however, seems to indicate that this is the word gear, which 
fits the context, fully as well as, perhaps better than Gifford's inter 
pretation. A common meaning is 'talk, discourse',, often in a depre 
ciatory sense. See Gloss. 

i. 6. 125 Things, that .are like, are soone familiar. 'Like will 
to like' is a familiar proverb. 

i. 6. 127 the signe o' the husband. An allusion to the signs of 
the zodiac, some of which were supposed to have a malign and 
others a beneficent influence. 

i. 6. 131 You grow old, while I tell you this. 

Hor. [Carm. I. 11. 8 .] : 

Dum loquimur, fugerit invida 
Aetas, carpe diem. G. 

Whalley suggested: 

Fugit Hora: hoc quod loquor, inde est. 

Pers. Sat. 5. 

i. 6. 131, 2 And such 

As cannot vse the present, are not wise. Cf. Underwoods 
36. 21 : 

To use the present, then, is not abuse. 

i. 6. 138 Nay, then, I taste a tricke in't. Cf. 'I do taste this as 
a trick put on me.' Ev. Man in, Wks. i. 133. See Introduction, 
p. xlvii. 

i. 6. 142 cautelous. For similar uses of the word cf. Massinger, 
City Madam, Wks., p. 321, and B. & Fl., Elder Brother, Wks. 10. 
275. Gifford gives an example from Knolles, Hist, of the Turks, 
p. 904. 

ACT i] Notes 155 

i. 6. 149 MAN. Sir, what doe you meane? 

153 MAN. You must play faire, S r . 'I am nor certain 
about the latter of these two speeches, but it is perfectly unquestion 
able that the former must have been spoken by the husband Fitz- 
dottrel.' C. 

Cunningham may be right, but the change is unnecessary if we 
consider Manly's reproof as occasioned by Fitzdottrel's interruption. 

i. 6. 158, 9 No wit of man 

Or roses can redeeme from being an Asse. 'Here is an allusion 
to the metamorphosis of Lucian into an ass; who being brought 
into the theatre to shew tricks, recovered his human shape by eating 
some roses which he found there. See the conclusion of the treatise, 
Lucius, sive Asinus*' W. 

See Lehman's edition, Leipzig, 1826, 6. 215. As Gifford says, 
the allusion was doubtless more familiar in Jonson's day than in 
our own. The story is retold in Harsnet's Declaration (p. 102), 
and Lucian's work seems to have played a rather important part 
in the discussion of witchcraft. 

i. 6. 161 To scape his lading. Cf. note i. 4. 72. 

i. 6. 180 To other ensignes. 'I. e., to horns, the insignia of a 
cuckold.' G. 

i. 6. 187 For the meere names sake. 'I. e. the name of the 
play.' W. 

i. 6. 195 the sad contract. See variants. W. and G. are doubt 
less correct. 

i. 6. 214 a guilt caroch. 'There was some distinction apparently 
between caroch and coach. I find in Lord Bacon's will, in which 
he disposed of so much imaginary wealth, the following bequest: 
"I give also to my wife my four coach geldings, and my best 
caroache, and her own coach mares and caroache." ' C. 

Minsheu says that a carroch is a great coach. Cf. also Taylor's 
Wks., 1630: 

No coaches, or carroaches she doth crave. 

Ram Alley, O. PI, 2d ed., 5. 475: 

No, nor your jumblings, 

In horslitters, in coaches or caroches. 

Greene's Tu Quoque, O. PI, 2d ed., 7. 28 : 

May'st draw him to the keeping of a coach 
For country, and carroch for London. 

Cf. also Dekker, Non-dram. Wks. i. in. Finally the matter is 
settled by Howes (p. 867), who gives the date of the introduction 
of coaches as 1564, and adds : 'Lastly, euen at this time, 1605, began 

156 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx i 

the ordinary use of Caroaches.' In Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 281, Gifford 
changes carroch to coach. 

i. 6. 216 Hide-parke. Jonson speaks of coaching in Hyde Park 
in the Prologue to the Staple of News, Wks. 5. 157, and in The 
World in the Moon, Wks. 7. 343. Pepys has many references to it 
in his Diary. 'May 7, 1662. And so, after the play was done, she 
and The Turner and Mrs. Lucin and I to the Parke ; and there 
found them out, and spoke to them; and observed many fine ladies, 
and staid till all were gone almost.' 

'April 22, 1664. In their coach to Hide Parke, where great plenty 
of gallants, and pleasant it was, only for the dust.' 

Ashton in his Hyde Park (p. 59) quotes from a ballad in the 
British Museum (c 1670-5) entitled, News from Hide Park, in 
which the following lines occur : 

Of all parts of England, Hide-park hath the name, 
For Coaches and Horses, and Persons of fame. 

i. 6. 216, 7 Black-Fryers, Visit the Painters. A church, pre 
cinct, and sanctuary with four gates, lying between Ludgate Hill and 
the Thames and extending westward from Castle Baynard (St. 
Andrew's Hill) to the Fleet river. It was so called from the settle 
ment there of the Black or Dominican Friars in 1276. Sir A. 
Vandyck lived here 1632-1641. 'Before Vandyck, however, Black- 
friars was the recognized abode of painters. Cornelius Jansen (d. 
1665) lived in the Blackfriars for several years. Isaac Oliver, the 
miniature painter, was a still earlier resident.' Painters on glass, 
or glass stainers, and collectors were also settled here. Wh-C. 

i. 6. 219 a middling Gossip. 'A go-between, an internuntia, as 
the Latin writers would have called her.' W. 

i. 6. 224 the cloake is mine. The reading in the folio belonging 
to Dr. J. M. Berdan of Yale is : 'the cloake is mine owne.' This 
accounts for the variant readings. 

i. 6. 230 motion. Spoken derogatively, a 'performance.' Lit., a 
puppet-show. The motion was a descendent of the morality, and 
exceedingly popular in England at this time. See Dr. Winter, 
Staple of News, p. 161 ; Strutt, Sports and Pastimes, p. 166 f. ; 
Knight, London i. 42. Jonson makes frequent mention of the 
motion. Bartholomew Fair 5. 5 is largely devoted to the descrip 
tion of one, and Tale Tub 5. 5 presents a series of them. 

i. 7. 4 more cheats? See note on Cheaters, 5. 6. 64, and Gloss. 

i. 7. 16 The state hath tane such note of 'hem. See note 
i. 2. 22. 

i. 7. 25 Your Almanack-Men. An excellent account of the 
Almanac-makers of the I7th century is given by H. R. Plomer in 
N. & Q., 6th Ser. 12. 243, from which the following is abridged : 

ACT n] Notes 


'Almanac-making- had become an extensive and profitable trade in 
this country at the beginning of the I7th century, and with the 
exception of some fifteen or twenty years at the time of the 
Rebellion continued to flourish until its close. There were three 
distinct classes of almanacs published during the seventeenth cen 
tury the common almanacs, which preceded and followed the period 
of the Rebellion, and the political and satirical almanacs that were 
the direct outcome of that event. 

'The common almanacs came out year after year in unbroken 
uniformity. They were generally of octavo size and consisted of 
two parts, an almanac and a prognostication. Good and evil days 
were recorded, and they contained rules as to bathing, purging, etc., 
descriptions of the four seasons and rules to know the weather, and 
during the latter half of the century an astrological prediction and 
"scheme" of the ensuing year. 

'In the preceding century the makers of almanacs were "Physitians 
and Preests", but they now adopted many other titles, such as 
"Student in Astrology", "Philomath", "Well Wilier to the Mathe 
matics." The majority of them were doubtless astrologers, but not 
a few were quack doctors, who only published their almanacs as 
advertisements.' (Almanac, a character in The Staple of News, is 
described as a 'doctor in physic.') 

Among the more famous almanac-makers the names of William 
Lilly, John Partridge and Bretnor may be mentioned. For the last 
see note 2. i. i, and B. & Fl., Rollo, Duke of Normandy, where 
Fiske and Bretnor appear again. Cf. also Alchemist, Wks. 4. 41 ; 
Every Man out, Wks. 2. 39-40; Mag. La., Wks. 6. 74, 5. In Sir 
Thomas Overbury's Character of The Almanac-Maker (Morley, p. 
56) we read: 'The verses of his book have a worse pace than ever 
had Rochester hackney; for his prose, 'tis dappled with ink-horn 
terms, and may serve for an almanac; but for his judging at the 
uncertainty of weather, any old shepherd shall make a dunce of him.' 


2. i. i Sir, money's a whore, etc. Coleridge, Notes, p. 280, 
emends: 'Money, sir, money's a', &c. Cunningham, on the other 
hand, thinks that 'the g-syllable arrangement is quite in Jonson's 
manner, and that it forces an emphasis upon every word especially 
effective at the beginning of an act.' See variants. 

Money is again designated as a whore in the Staple of News 4. i : 
'Saucy Jack, away: Pecunia is a whore.' In the same play Penny- 
boy, the usurer, is called a 'money-bawd.' Dekker (Non-dram. 
Wks. 2. 137) speaks of keeping a bawdy-house for Lady Pecunia. 
The figure is a common one. 

158 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

2. i. 3 Via. This exclamation is quite common among the 
dramatists and is explained by Nares as derived from the Italian 
exclamation via! 'away, on!' with a quibble on the literal meaning 
of L. via, a way. The Century Dictionary agrees substantially with 
this derivation. Abundant examples of its use are given by the 
authorities quoted, to which may be added Merry Devil of Edmon 
ton i. 2. 5, and Marston, Dutch Courtezan, Wks. 2. 20: 

O, yes, come, via\ away, boy on! 

2. i. 5 With Aqua-vitae. Perhaps used with especial reference 
to line i, where he has just called money a bawd. Compare: 

O, ay, as a bawd with aqua-vitae. 

Marston, The Malcontent, Wks. i. 294. 

'Her face is full of those red pimples with drinking Aquauite, the 
common drinke of all bawdes.' Dekker, Whore of Babylon, Wks. 

2. 246. 

2. i. 17. See variants. Line 15 shows that the original reading is 

2. i. 19 it shall be good in law. See note i. 2. 22. 

2. i. 20 Wood-cock. A cant term for a simpleton or dupe. 

2. i. 21 th* Exchange. This was the first Royal Exchange, 
founded by Sir Thomas Gresham in 1566, opened by Queen Eliza 
beth in 1570-1, and destroyed in the great fire of 1666 (Wh-C). 
Howes (1631) says that it was 'plenteously stored with all kinds 
of rich wares and fine commodities/ and Paul Hentzner (p. 40) 
speaks of it with enthusiasm. 

It was a favorite lounging-place, especially in the evening. 
Wheatley quotes Hayman, Quodlibet, 1628, p. 6 : 

Though little coin thy purseless pockets line, 
Yet with great company thou'rt taken up; 
For often with Duke Humfray thou dost dine, 
And often with Sir Thomas Gresham sup. 

'We are told in London and Country Carbonadoed, 1632, that at 
the exchange there were usually more coaches attendant than at 
church doors.' Cf. also Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 357: 'I challenge all 
Cheapside to shew such another : Moor-fields, Pimlico-path, or the 
Exchange, in a summer evening.' Also Ev. Man in, Wks. I. 39. 

2. i. 30 do you doubt his eares? Ingine's speech is capable of 
a double interpretation. Pug has already spoken of the 'liberal 
ears' of his asinine master. 

2. i. 41 a string of's purse. Purses, of course, used to be hung 
at the girdle. A thief was called a cut-purse. See the amusing 
scene in Bart. Fair, Wks. 5. 406. 

ACT n] Notes 159 

2. i. 53, 4 at the Pan, Not, at the skirts. 'Pan is not easily dis 
tinguished from skirt. Both words seem to refer to the outer parts, 
or extremities. Possibly Meercraft means on a broader scale, on 
a more extended front.' G. 

'The pan is evidently the deepest part of the swamp, which con 
tinues to hold water when the skirts dry up, like the hole in the 
middle of the tray under a joint when roasting, which collects all 
the dripping. Meercraft proposed to grapple with the main diffi 
culty at once.' C. 

I had already arrived at the same conclusion before reading 
Cunningham's note. The NED. gives : 'Pan. A hollow or depres 
sion in the ground, esp. one in which water stands. 

1594 Plat, Jewell-ho i. 32 Of all Channels, Pondes, Pooles, Riuers, 
and Ditches, and of all other pannes and bottomes whatsoeuer.' 

Pan, however, is also an obsolete form of pane, a cloth or skirt. 
The use is evidently a quibble. The word pan suggested to Jonson 
the word skirt, which he accordingly employed not unaptly. 

2. i. 63 his black bag of papers, there, in Buckram. The buck 
ram bag was the usual sign of the pettifogger. Cf. Marston, Mal 
content, Wks. i. 235: 

Pass. Ay, as a pettifogger by his buckram bag. 

Dekker, // this be not a good Play, Wks. 3. 274: 'We must all turn 
pettifoggers and in stead of gilt rapiers, hang buckram bags at our 
girdles.' Nash refers to the same thing in Pierce Pennilesse, Wks. 
2. 17. 

2. i. 64 th' Earledome of Pancridge. Pancridge is a corruption 
of Pancras. The Earl of Pancridge was 'one of the "Worthies" 
who annually rode to Mile End, or the Artillery Ground, in the 
ridiculous procession called Arthur's Shew' (G.). Cf. To Inigo 
Marquis Would-be, Wks. 8. 115: 

Content thee to be Pancridge earl the while. 

Tale Tub, Wks. 6. 175 : 

next our St. George, 

Who rescued the king's daughter, I will ride; 
Above Prince Arthur. 

Clench. Or our own Shoreditch duke. 

Med. Or Pancridge earl. 

Pan. Or Bevis or Sir Guy. 

For Arthur's Show see Entick's Survey i. 4975 Wh-C. i. 65; and 
Nares i. 36. Cf. note 4. 7. 65. 

2. i. 71, 2 Your Borachio Of Spaine. '"Borachio (says Min- 
shieu) is a bottle commonly of a pigges skin, with the hair inward, 

160 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

dressed inwardly with rozen, to keep wine or liquor sweet :" Wines 
preserved in these bottles contract a peculiar flavour, and are then 
said to taste of the borachio.' G. 

Florio says : 'a boracho, or a bottle made of a goates skin such 
as they vse in Spaine.' The word occurs somewhat frequently 
(see NED.) and apparently always with this meaning, or in the 
figurative sense of 'drunkard'. It is evident, however, from 
Engine's question, 'Of the King's glouer?' either that it is used 
here in a slightly different sense, or more probably that Merecraft 
is relying on Fitzdottrel's ignorance of the subject. Spanish leather 
for wearing apparel was at this time held in high esteem. See note 
4. 4. 71, 2. 

2. i. 83 a Harrington. 'In 1613, a patent was granted to John 
Stanhope, lord Harrington, Treasurer of the Chambers, for the 
coinage of royal farthing tokens, of which he seems to have availed 
himself with sufficient liberality. Some clamour was excited on the 
occasion : but it speedily subsided ; for the Star Chamber kept a 
watchful eye on the first symptoms of discontent at these pernicious 
indulgences. From this nobleman they took the name of Harring 
ton in common conversation.' G. 

'Now (1613) my lord Harrington obtained a patent from the 
King for the making of Brasse Farthings, a thing that brought with 
it some contempt through lawfull.' Sparke, Hist. Narration, Somer's 
Tracts 2. 294. 

A reference to this coin is made in Drunken Barnaby's Journal 
in the Oxoniana (quoted by Gifford) and in Sir Henry Wotton's 
Letters (p. 558, quoted by Whalley). Cf. also Mag. La., Wks. 6. 89: 
'I will note bate you a single Harrington,' and ibid., Wks. 6. 43. 

2. i. 102 muscatell. The grape was usually called muscat. So 
in Pepys' Diary, 1662 : 'He hath also sent each of us some anchovies, 
olives and muscatt.' The wine was variously written muscatel, mus- 
cadel, and muscadine. Muscadine and eggs are often mentioned 
together (cf. Text, 2. 2. 95-96; New Inn 3. i; Middleton, Wks. 2. 
290; 3. 94; and 8. 36), and were used as an aphrodisiac (Bullen). 
Nares quotes Minsheu : 'Vinum muscatum, quod moschi odorem 
referat ; for the sweetnesse and smell it resembles muske.' 

2. i. 116, 7 the receiu'd heresie, That England beares no 
Dukes. 'I know not when this heresy crept in. There was appar 
ently some unwillingness to create dukes, as a title of honour, in 
the Norman race; probably because the Conqueror and his imme 
diate successors were dukes of Normandy, and did not choose that a 
subject should enjoy similar dignities with themselves. The first of 
the English who bore the title was Edward the black prince, (son 
of Edward III.) who was created duke of Cornwall, by charter, as 
Collins says, in 1337. The dignity being subsequently conferred on 

ACT n] Notes 161 

several of the blood-royal, and of the nobility, who came to untimely 
ends, an idea seems to have been entertained by the vulgar, that the 
title itself was ominous. At the accession of James I. to the crown 
of this country, there was, I believe, no English peer of ducal 
dignity.' G. 

The last duke had been created in the reign of Henry VIII., who 
made his illegitimate son the Duke of Richmond, and Charles 
Brandon, who married his sister Mary, Duke of Suffolk. After the 
attainder and execution of Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk, in 
1572, there was no duke in England except the king's sons, until the 
creation of the Duke of Richmond in 1623. (See New Int. Cyc. 
6. 349-) 

2. i. 144 Bermudas. 'This was a cant term for some places in 
the town with the same kind of privilege as the mint of old, or the 
purlieus of the Fleet.' W. 

'These streights consisted of a nest of obscure courts, alleys, and 
avenues, running between the bottom of St. Martin's Lane, Half- 
moon, and Chandos-street. In Justice Overdo's time, they were the 
receptacles of fraudulent debtors, thieves and prostitutes.' G. 
(Note on Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 407.) 

'On Wednesday at the Bermudas Court, Sir Edwin Sandys fell 
foul of the Earl of Warwick. The Lord Cavendish seconded 
Sandys and the Earl told the Lord, "By his favour he believed he 
lied." Hereupon, it is said, they rode out yesterday, and, as it is 
thought, gone beyond sea to fight. Leigh to Rev. Joseph Mede, 
July 18, 1623.' (Quoted Wh-C. i. 169.) So in Underwoods, Wks. 

turn pirates here at land, 
Have their Bermudas and their Streights i' the Strand. 

Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 407 : "The Streights, or the Bermudas, where the 
quarrelling lesson is read.' 

It is evident from the present passage and the above quotations 
that ruffians like Everill kept regular quarters in the 'Bermudas', 
where they might be consulted with reference to the settlement of 
affairs of honor. 

2. i. 151 puts off man, and kinde. 'I. e., human nature.' G. 
Cf. Catiline, Wks. 4. 212: 

so much, that kind 
May seek itself there, and not find. 

2. i. 162 French-masques. 'Masks do not appear as ordinary 
articles of female costume in England previous to the reign of 
Queen Elizabeth. . . . French masks are alluded to by Ben Jon- 
son in The Devil is an Ass. They were probably the half masks 
called in France 'loups,' whence the English term 'loo masks.' 

162 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

Loo masks and whole as wind do blow, 

And Miss abroad's disposed to go. 

Mundus Muliebris, 1690.' 
Planche, Cycl. of Costume I. 365. 

'Black masks were frequently worn by ladies in public in the time 
of Shakespeare, particularly, and perhaps universally at the theatres.' 

2. i. 163 Cut-works. A very early sort of lace deriving its name 
from the mode of its manufacture, the fine cloth on which the 
pattern was worked being cut away, leaving the design perfect. It 
is supposed to have been identical with what was known as Greek 
work, and made by the nuns of Italy in the twelfth century. It was 
introduced into England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth, and 
continued in fashion during those of James I. and Charles I. Later 
it fell under the ban of the Puritans, and after that period is rarely 
heard of. (Abridged from Planche, Cycl.) 

2. i. 168 ff. nor turne the key, etc. Gifford points out that the 
source of this passage is Plautus, Aulularia [11. 90-100] : 

Caue quemquam alienum in aedis intromiseris. 
Quod quispiam ignem quaerat, extingui uolo, 
Ne causae quid sit quod te quispiam quaeritet. 
Nam si ignis uiuet, tu extinguere extempulo, 
Turn aquam aufugisse dicito, si quis petet. 
Cultrum, securim, pistillum, mortarium, 
Quae utenda uasa semper uicini rogant, 
Fures uenisse atque abstulisse dicito. 
Profecto in aedis meas me absente neminem 
Volo intromitti. atque etiam hoc praedico tibi, 
Si Bona Fortuna ueniat, ne intromiseris. 

Jonson had already made use of a part of this passage : 

Put out the fire, kill the chimney's heart, 

That it may breathe no more than a dead man. 

Case is Altered 2. i, Wks. 6. 328. 

Wilson imitated the same passage in his Projectors, Act 2, Sc. I : 
'Shut the door after me, bolt it and bar it, and see you let no one 
in in my absence. Put out the fire, if there be any, for fear some 
body, seeing the smoke, may come to borrow some! If any one 
come for water, say the pipe's cut off ; or to borrow a pot, knife, 
pestle and mortar, or the like, say they were stole last night ! But 
harke ye ! I charge ye not to open the door to give them an answer, 
but whisper't through the keyhole ! For, I tell you again, I will 
have nobody come into my house while I'm abroad ! No ; no living 
soul ! Nay, though Good Fortune herself knock at a door, don't let 
her in !' 

2. 2. i I haue no singular seruice, etc. I. e., This is the sort of 
thing I must become accustomed to, if I am to remain on earth. 

ACT n] Notes 163 

2. 2. 49, 50 Though they take Master Fitz-dottrell, I am no 
such foule. Gifford points out that the punning allusion of foul 
to fowl is a play upon the word dottrel. 'The dotterel (Fuller tells 
us) is avis 7eXoToirotoj, a mirth-making bird, so ridiculously mimical, 
that he is easily caught, or rather catcheth himself by his over-active 
imitation. As the fowler stretcheth forth his arms and legs, stalk 
ing towards the bird, so the bird extendeth his legs and wings, 
approaching the fowler till he is surprised in the net.' G. 

This is what is alluded to in 4. 6. 42. The use of the metaphor 
is common. Gifford quotes Beaumont & Fletcher, Bonduca and 
Sea Voyage. Many examples are given in Nares and the NED., to 
which may be added Damon and Pithias, O. PI. 4. 68; Nash, Wks. 
3. 171; and Butler's Character of a Fantastic (ed. Morley, p. 401) : 
'He alters his gait with the times, and has not a motion of his 
body that (like a dottrel) he does not borrow from somebody else.' 
Nares quotes Old Couple (O. PI, 4th ed., 12. 41) : 

E. Our Dotterel then is caught? 

B. He is and just 
As Dotterels use to be: the lady first 
Advanc'd toward him, stretch'd forth her wing, and he 
Met her with all expressions. 

It is uncertain whether the sense of 'bird' or 'simpleton' is the 
original. Dottrel seems to be connected with dote and dotard. The 
bird is a species of plover, and Cunningham says that 'Selby ridi 
cules the notion of its being more stupid than other birds.' In Bart. 
Fair (Wks. 4. 445) we hear of the 'sport call'd Dorring the 

2. 2. 51 Nor faire one. The dramatists were fond of punning on 
foul and fair. Cf. Bart. Fair passim. 

2. 2. 77 a Nupson. Jonson uses the word again in Every Man 
in, Wks. I. in: 'O that I were so happy as to light on a nupson 
now.' In Lingua, 1607, (O. PI, 4th ed., 9. 367, 458) both the forms 
nup and nupson are used. The etymology is uncertain. The Cen 
tury Dictionary thinks nup may be a variety of nope. Gifford thinks 
it may be a corruption of Greek vyir. 

2. 2. 78 with my Master's peace. 'I. e. respectfully, reverently: 
a bad translation of cum pace domini.' G. 

2. 2. 81 a spic'd conscience. Used again in Sejanus, Wks. 3. 120, 
and New Inn, Wks. 5. 337. 

2. 2. 90 The very forked top too. Another reference to the 
horned head of the cuckold. Cf. i. 6. 179, 80. 

2. 2. 93 engendering by the eyes. Cf. Song in Merch. of V. 
3. 2. 67 : 'It is engender'd in the eyes.' 

2. 2. 98 make benefit. Cf. Every Man in, Wks. i. 127. 

1 64 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

2. 2. 104 a Cokes. Cf. Ford, Lover's Melancholy, Wks. 2. 80: 
'A kind of cokes, which is, as the learned term [it], an ass, a puppy, 

a widgeon, a dolt, a noddy, a .' Cokes is the name of a 

foolish coxcomb in Bart. Fair. 

2. 2. 112 you neat handsome vessells. Cf. note i. 6. 57. 

2. 2. 116 your squires of honour. This seems to be equivalent 
to the similar expression 'squire of dames.' 

2. 2. 119-125 For the variety at my times, ... I know, to 
do my turnes, sweet Mistresse. I. e., when for variety you turn 
to me, I will be able to serve your needs. Pug, of course, from the 
delicate nature of the subject, chooses to make use of somewhat 
ambiguous phrases. 

2. 2. 121. Thos. Keightley, N. & Q. 4. 2. 603, proposes to read : 

Of that proportion, or in the rule. 

2. 2. 123 Picardill. Cotgrave gives : 'Piccadilles : Piccadilles ; the 
severall divisions or peeces fastened together about the brimme of 
the collar of a doublet, &c.' Gifford says: 'With respect to the 
Piccadil, or, as Jonson writes it, Picardil, (as if he supposed the 
fashion of wearing it be derived from Picardy,) the term is simply 
a diminutive of picca (Span, and Ital.) a spear-head, and was given 
to this article of foppery, from a fancied resemblance of its stiffened 
plaits to the bristled points of those weapons. Blount thinks, and 
apparently with justice, that Piccadilly took its name from the sale 
of the "small stiff collars, so called", which was first set on foot 
in a house near the western extremity of the present street, by one 
Higgins, a tailor.' 

As Gifford points out, 'Pug is affecting modesty, since he had 
not only assumed a handsome body, but a fashionable dress, "made 
new" for a particular occasion.' See 5. I. 35, 36. 

Jonson mentions the Picardill again in the Challenge at Tilt, 
Wks. 7. 217, and in the Epistle to a Friend, Wks. 8. 356. For other 
examples see Nares, Gloss. 

2. 2. 127 f. your fine Monkey; etc. These are all common 
terms of endearment. The monkey is frequently mentioned as a 
lady's pet by the dramatists. See Cynthia's Revels, passim, and 
Mrs. Centlivre's Busie Body. 

2 - 3- 36, 7 and your coach-man bald! Because he shall be 
bare. See note to 4. 3. 202. 

2. 3. 45 This man defies the Diuell. See 2. i. 18. 

2. 3. 46 He dos't by Ingine. I. e., wit, ingenuity, with a possible 
reference to the name of Merecraft's agent. 

2. 3. 49 Crowland. Crowland, or Croyland is an ancient town 
and parish of Lincolnshire, situated in a low flat district, about eight 
miles north-east from Peterborough. The origin of Crowland was 

ACT n] Notes 165 

in a hermitage founded in the 7th century by St. Guthlac. An abbey 
was founded in 714 by King Ethelbald, which was twice burnt and 

2. 4. 6 Spenser, I thinke, the younger. Thomas (1373-1400) 
was the only member of the Despenser family who was an Earl of 
Gloucester. The person referred to here, however, is Hugh le 
Despenser, the younger baron, son of Hugh le Despenser, the elder. 
He married Eleanor, daughter of Gilbert of Clare, Earl of Glouces 
ter, and sister and coheiress of the next Earl Gilbert. After the 
death of the latter, the inheritance was divided between the husbands 
of his three sisters, and Despenser was accordingly sometimes called 
Earl of Gloucester. 

Despenser was at first on the side of the barons, but later joined 
the King's party. In 1321 a league was formed against him, and he 
was banished, but was recalled in the following year. In the 
Barons' rising of 1326 he was taken prisoner, brought to Hereford, 
tried and put to death. 

2. 4. 8 Thomas of Woodstocke. Thomas of Woodstock, Earl 
of Buckingham (1355-97), the youngest son of Edward III., was 
made Duke of Gloucester by his nephew, Richard II., in 1385, and 
later acquired an extraordinary influence, dominating the affairs of 
England for several years. By his high-handed actions he incurred 
Richard's enmity. He was arrested July 10, 1397, and conveyed to 
Calais, where he was murdered in the following September by the 
king's order. 

2. 4. 10 Duke Humphrey. Humphrey, called the Good Duke 
Humphrey (1391-1447), youngest son of Henry IV., was created 
Duke of Gloucester and Earl of Pembroke in 1414. During the 
minority of Henry VI. he acted as Protector of the kingdom. His 
career was similar to that of Thomas of Woodstock. In 1447 he 
was arrested at Bury by order of Henry VI., who had become king 
in 1429. Here he died in February, probably by a natural death, 
although there were suspicions of foul play. 

2. 4. ii Richard the Third. Richard III. (1452-1485), Duke of 
Gloucester and King of England, was defeated and slain in the battle 
of Bosworth Field, 1485. 

2. 4. 12-4 MER. By ... authentique. This passage has 
been the occasion of considerable discussion. The subject was first 
approached by Malone. In a note to an essay on The Order of 
Shakespeare's Plays in his edition of Shakespeare's works (ed. 
1790, 3. 322) he says : 'In The Devil's an Ass, acted in 1616, all his 
historical plays are obliquely censured.' 

Again in a dissertation on Henry VI. : 'The malignant Ben, does 
indeed, in his Devil's an Ass, 1616, sneer at our author's historical 

1 66 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

pieces, which for twenty years preceding had been in high reputation, 
and probably were then the only historical dramas that had posses 
sion of the theatre; but from the list above given, it is clear that 
Shakespeare was not the first who dramatized our old chronicles ; 
and that the principal events of English History were familiar to 
the ears of his audience, before he commenced a writer for the 
stage.' Malone here refers to quotations taken from Gosson and 
Lodge. Both these essays were reprinted in Steevens' edition, and 
Malone's statements were repeated in the edition by Dr. Chalmers. 

In 1808 appeared Gilchrist's essay, An Examination of the 
Charges . . . of Ben Jonson's enmity, etc. towards Shakespeare. 
This refutation, strengthened by Gifford's Proofs of Ben Jonson's 
Malignity, has generally been deemed conclusive. Gifford's note on 
the present passage is written with much asperity. He was not 
content, however, with an accurate restatement of Malone's argu 
ments. He changes the italics in order to produce an erroneous 
impression, printing thus : 'which were probably then the only his 
torical dramas on the stage.' He adds : 'And this is advanced in 
the very face of his own arguments, to prove that there were scores, 
perhaps hundreds, of others on it at the time.' This is direct falsifi 
cation. There is no contradiction in Malone's arguments. What he 
attempted to prove was that Shakespeare had had predecessors in 
this field, but that in 1616 his plays held undisputed possession of the 
stage. Gifford adds a passage from Heywood's Apology for Actors, 
1612, which is more to the point: 'Plays have taught the unlearned 
the knowledge of many famous histories, instructed such as cannot 
read in the discovery of our English Chronicles: and what man 
have you now of that weake capacity that being possest of their 
true use, cannot discourse of any notable thing recorded even from 
William the Conqueror, until this day?' 

This passage seems to point to the existence of other historical 
plays contemporary with those of Shakespeare. Besides, Jonson's 
words seem sufficiently harmless. Nevertheless, although I am not 
inclined to accept Malone's charge of 'malignity', I cannot agree 
with Gifford that the reference is merely a general one. I have no 
doubt that the 'Chronicle,' of which Merecraft speaks, is Hall's, 
and the passage the following: 'It semeth to many men, that the 
name and title of Gloucester, hath been vnfortunate and vnluckie 
to diuerse, whiche for their honor, haue been erected by creacion of 
princes, to that stile and dignitie, as Hugh Spencer, Thomas of 
Woodstocke, sonne to kyng Edward the third, and this duke Hum- 
frey, which thre persones, by miserable death finished their daies, 
and after them kyng Richard the iii. also, duke of Gloucester, in 
ciuill warre was slaine and confounded : so y* this name of Glouces- 

ACT n] Notes 167 

ter, is take for an vnhappie and vnfortunate stile, as the prouerbe 
speaketh of Seianes horse, whose rider was euer unhorsed, and 
whose possessor was euer brought to miserie.' Hall's Chronicle, ed. 
1809, pp. 209-10. The passage in 'the Play-bookes' which Jonson 
satirizes is at the close of 3 Henry VI. 2. 6 : 

Edw. Richard, I will create thee Duke of Gloucester, 
And George, of Clarence: Warwick, as ourself, 
Shall do and undo as him pleaseth best. 

Rich. Let me be Duke of Clarence, George of Gloucester; 
For Gloucester's dukedom is too ominous. 

The last line, of course, corresponds to the 'Tis fatal of Fitzdot- 
trel. Furthermore it may be observed that Thomas of Woodstock's 
death at Calais is referred to in Shakespeare's K. Rich. II. ; Duke 
Humphrey appears in 2 Henry IV. ; Henry V. ; and i and 2 Henry 
VI. ; and Richard III. in 2 and 3 Henry VI. and K. Rich. III. 
3 Henry VI. is probably, however, not of Shakespearean authorship. 

2. 4. 15 a noble house. See Introduction, p. Ixxiv. 

2. 4. 23 Groen-land. The interest in Greenland must have been 
at its height in 1616. Between 1576 and 1622 English explorers 
discovered various portions of its coast; the voyages of Frobisher, 
Davis, Hudson and Baffin all taking place during that period. 
Hakluyt's Principall Navigations appeared in 1589, Davis's Worldes 
Hydro graphical Description in 1594, and descriptions of Hudson's 
voyages in 1612-3. The usual spelling of the name seems to have 
been Greenland, as here. I find the word spelled also Groineland, 
Groenlandia, Gronland, and Greneland (see Publications of the 
Hakluyt Society). Jonson's reference has in it a touch of sarcasm. 

2. 4. 27 f. Yes, when you, etc. The source of this passage is 
Hor., Sat. 2. 2. 129 f. : 

Nam propriae telluris erum natura neque ilium 
Nee me nee quemquam statuit ; nos expulit ille, 
Ilium aut nequities, aut vafri inscitia juris 
Postremo expellet certe vivacior haeres. 
Nunc ager Umbreni sub nomine, nuper Ofelli 
Dictus, erit nulli proprius, sed cadet in usum 
Nunc mihi, nunc alii. 

Gifford quotes a part of the passage and adds: 'What follows is 
admirably turned by Pope : 

Shades that to Bacon might retreat afford, 
Become the portion of a booby lord; 
And Helmsley, once proud Buckingham's delight, 
Slides to a scrivener, or city knight.' 

A much closer imitation is found in Webster, Devil's Law Case, 
IVks. 2. 37: 

1 68 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT n 

Those lands that were the clients are now become 
The lawyer's: and those tenements that were 
The country gentleman's, are now grown 
To be his tailor's. 

2. 4. 32 not do'it first. Cf. i. 6. 14 and note. 

2. 5. 10 And garters which are lost, if shee can shew 'hem. 
Gifford thinks the line should read : 'can not shew'. Cunningham 
gives a satisfactory explanation: 'As I understand this it means that 
if a gallant once saw the garters he would never rest until he 
obtained possession of them, and they would thus be lost to the 
family. Garters thus begged from the ladies were used by the 
gallants as hangers for their swords and poniards. See Every Man 
out of his Humour, Wks. 2. 81 : "O, I have been graced by them 
beyond all aim of affection : this is her garter my dagger hangs in ;" 
and again p. 194. We read also in Cynthia's Revels, Wks. 2. 266, of 
a gallant whose devotion to a lady in such that he 

Salutes her pumps, 

Adores her hems, her skirts, her knots, her curls, 
Will spend his patrimony for a garter, 
Or the least feather in her bounteous fan.' 

Gifford's theory that ladies had some mode of displaying their 
garters is contradicted by the following: 

Mary. These roses will shew rare: would 'twere in fashion 
That the garters might be seen too! 

Massinger, City Madam, Wks., p. 317. 

Cf. also Cynthia's Revels, Wks. 2. 296. 

2. 5. 14 her owne deare reflection, in her glasse. 'They must 
haue their looking glasses caryed with them wheresoeuer they go. 
. . . no doubt they are the deuils spectacles to allure vs to pride, 
and consequently to distruction for euer.' Stubbes, Anat., Part i, 
P- 79- 

2. 6. 21 and done the worst defeate vpon my selfe. Defeat is 
often used by Shakespeare in this sense. See Schmidt, and compare 
Hamlet 2. 2. 598 : 

A king 

Upon whose property and most dear life , 

A damh'd defeat was made. 

2. 6. 32 a body intire. Cf. 5. 6. 48. 

2. 6. 35 You make me paint. Gifford quotes from the Two 

Noble Kinsmen : 

How modestly she blows and paints the sun 
With her chaste blushes. 

ACT n] Notes 169 

2. 6. 37 SN. 'Whoever has noticed the narrow streets or rather 
lanes of our ancestors, and observed how story projected beyond 
story, till the windows of the upper rooms almost touched on dif 
ferent sides, will easily conceive the feasibility of everything which 
takes place between Wittipol and his mistress, though they make 
their appearance in different houses.' G. 

I cannot believe that Jonson wished to represent the two houses 
as on opposite sides of the street. He speaks of them as 'con 
tiguous', which would naturally mean side by side. Further than 
this, one can hardly imagine even in the 'narrow lanes of our 
ancestors' so close a meeting that the liberties mentioned in 2. 6. 76 
SN. could be taken. 

2. 6. 53 A strange woman. In Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 395, Justice 
Overdo says : 'Rescue this youth here out of the hands of the lewd 
man and the strange woman.' Gifford explains in a note : 'The 
scripture phrase for an immodest woman, a prostitute. Indeed this 
acceptation of the word is familiar to many languages. It is found 
in the Greek; and we have in Terence pro uxore habere hanc 
peregrinam : upon which Donatus remarks, hoc nomine etiam mere- 
trices nominabantur.' 

2 - 6. 57-113 WIT. No, my tune-full Mistresse? etc. This very 
important passage is the basis of Fleay's theory of identification 
discussed in section D. IV. of the Introduction. The chief passages 
necessary for comparison are quoted below. 

In Ten Lyric Pieces. 

His Discourse with Cupid. 

Noblest Charis, you that are 

Both my fortune and my star, 

And do govern more my blood, 

Than the various moon the flood, 
5 Hear, what late discourse of you, 

Love and I have had; and true. 

'Mongst my Muses finding me, 

Where he chanced your name to see 

Set, and to this softer strain; 
10 Sure, said he, if I have brain, 

This, here sung, can be no other, 

By description, but my Mother! 

So hath Homer praised her hair; 

So Anacreon drawn the air 
15 Of her face, and made to rise 

Just about her sparkling eyes, 

Both her brows bent like my bow. 

By her looks I do her know, 

Which you call my shafts. And see! 

The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

20 Such my Mother's blushes be, 
As the bath your verse discloses 
In her cheeks, of milk and roses; 
Such as oft I wanton in: 
And, above her even chin, 

25 Have you placed the bank of kisses, 
Where, you say, men gather blisses, 
Ripen'd with a breath more sweet, 
Than when flowers and west-winds meet. 
Nay, her white and polish'd neck, 

30 With the lace that doth it deck, 
Is my mother's: hearts of slain 
Lovers, made into a chain! 
And between each rising breast, 
Lies the valley call'd my nest, 

35 Where I sit and proyne my wings 
After flight; and put new stings 
To my shafts: her very name 
With my mother's is the same. 
I confess all, I replied, 

40 And the glass hangs by her side, 
And the girdle 'bout her waist, 
All is Venus, save unchaste. 
But alas, thou seest the least 
Of her good, who is the best 

45 Of her sex: but couldst thou, Love, 
Call to mind the forms that strove 
For the apple, and those three 
Make in one, the same were she. 
For this beauty yet doth hide 

50 Something more than thou hast spied. 
Outward grace weak love beguiles: 
She is Venus when she smiles; 
But she's Juno when she walks, 
And Minerva when she talks. 



By those bright eyes, at whose immortal fires 

Love lights his torches to inflame desires; 

By that fair stand, your forehead, whence he bends 

His double bow, and round his arrows sends; 
5 By that tall grove, your hair, whose globy rings 

He flying curls, and crispeth with his wings; 

By those pure baths your either cheek discloses, 

Where he doth steep himself in milk and roses; 

And lastly, by your lips, the bank of kisses, 
10 Where men at once may plant and gather blisses: 

Tell me, my lov'd friend, do you love or no? 

So well as I may tell in verse, 'tis so? 

You blush, but do not: friends are either none, 

Though they may number bodies, or but one. 
15 I'll therefore ask no more, but bid you love, 

And so that either may example prove 

ACT n] flf ote ' s 

Unto the other; and live patterns, how 
Others, in time, may love as we do now. 
Slip no occasion; as time stands not still, 

20 I know no beauty, nor no youth that will. 
To use the present, then, is not abuse, 
You have a husband is the just excuse 
Of all that can be done him; such a one 
As would make shift to make himself alone 

.25 That which we can; who both in you, his wife, 
His issue, and all circumstance of life," 
As in his place, because he would not vary, 
Is constant to be extraordinary. 


The Lady Purbeck's Fortune, by the 
2 Gip. Help me, wonder, here's a book, 

Where I would for ever look: 

Never yet did gipsy trace 

Smoother lines in hands or face: 
5 Venus here doth Saturn move 

That you should be Queen of Love; 

And the other stars consent; 

Only Cupid's not content; 

For though you the theft disguise, 
10 You have robb'd him of his eyes. 

And to shew his envy further, 

Here he chargeth you with murther: 

Says, although that at your sight, 

He must all his torches light; 
15 Though your either cheek discloses 

Mingled baths of milk and roses; 

Though your lips be banks of blisses, 

Where he plants, and gathers kisses; 

And yourself the reason why, 
20 Wisest men for love may die; 

You will turn all hearts to tinder, 

And shall make the world one cinder. 



2 Cup. What can I turn other than a Fury itself to see thy 
impudence? If I be a shadow, what is substance? was it not I 
that yesternight waited on the bride into the nuptial chamber, and, 
against the bridegroom came, made her the throne of love? had I 
5 not lighted my torches in her eyes, planted my mother's roses in 
her cheeks ; were not her eye-brows bent to the fashion of my bow, 
and her looks ready to be loosed thence, like my shafts? had I not 
ripened kisses on her lips, fit for a Mercury to gather, and made 

172 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx n 

her language sweeter than his upon her tongue? was not the girdle 
10 about her, he was to untie, my mother's, wherein all the joys and 
delights of love were woven? 

i Cup. And did not I bring on the blushing bridegroom to taste 
those joys? and made him think all stay a torment? did I not 
shoot myself into him like a flame, and made his desires and his 
15 graces equal? were not his looks of power to have kept the night 
alive in contention with day, and made the morning never wished 
for? Was there a curl in his hair, that I did not sport in, or a 
ring of it crisped, that might not have become Juno's fingers? his 
very undressing, was it not Love's arming? did not all his kisses 
20 charge ? and every touch attempt ? but his words, were they not 
feathered from my wings, and flew in singing at her ears, like 
arrows tipt with gold? 

In the above passages the chief correspondences to be noted are 
as follows : 

1. Ch. 5. 17; U. 36. 3-4; Challenge 6. Cf. also Ch. 9. 17: 

Eyebrows bent, like Cupid's bow. 

2. Ch. 5. 25-6; U. 36. 9-10 ; DA. 2. 6. 86-7; Gipsies 17-8; Chal 
lenge 8. 

3. Ch. 5. 21-2; U. 36. 7-8; DA. 2. 6. 82-3; Gipsies 15-6; Chal 
lenge 5-6. 

4. Ch. 5. 41 ; Challenge 9-10. 

5. U. 36. 5-6; DA. 2. 6. 77-82; Challenge 17-8. Cf. also Ch. 
9. 9-12: 

Young I'd have him too, and fair, 
Yet a man; with crisped hair, 
Cast in thousand snares and rings, 
For love's fingers, and his wings. 

6. U. 36. 21 ; DA. i. 6. 132. 

7. U. 36. 1-2; Gipsies 13-4; Challenge 5. 

8. U. 36. 22-3; DA. 2. 6. 64-5. 

9. DA. 2. 6. 84-5 ; Ch. 9. 19-20 : 

Even nose, and cheek withal, 
Smooth as is the billiard-ball. 

10. Gipsies 19-20; Ch. i. 23-4: 

Till she be the reason, why, 

All the world for love may die. 

2. 6. 72 These sister-swelling brests. This is an elegant and 
poetical rendering of the sororiantes mammae of the Latins, which 
Festus thus explains : Sororiare puellarum mammae dicuntur, cum 
primum tumescunt.' G. 

ACT n] Notes 173 

2. 6. 76 SN. 'Liberties very similar to these were, in the poet's 
time, permitted by ladies, who would have started at being told that 
they had foregone all pretensions to delicacy.' G. 

The same sort of familiarity is hinted at in Stubbes, Anatomy of 
Abuses (Part i, p. 78). Furnivall quotes Histriomastix (Simpson's 
School of Shak. 2. 50) and Vindication of Top Knots, Bagford 
Collection, i. 124, in illustration of the subject. Gosson's Pleasant 
Quippes (i595) speaks of 'these naked paps, the Devils ginnes.' 
Cf. also Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 266, and Case is A., Wks. 6. 330. It 
seems to have been a favorite subject of attack at the hands of both 
Puritans and dramatists. 

2. 6. 76 Downe to this valley. Jonson uses a similar figure in 
Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 240 and in Charis (see note 2. 6. 57). 

2. 6. 78 these crisped groues. So Milton, Comus, 984: 'Along 
the crisped shades and bowers.' Herrick, Hesper., Cerem. Candle 
mas-Eve : 'The crisped yew.' 

2. 6. 85 well torn'd. Jonson's usual spelling. See Timber, ed. 
Schelling, 64. 33 ; 76. 22, etc. 

2. 6. 85 Billyard ball. Billiards appears to have been an out-of- 
door game until the sixteenth century. It was probably introduced 
into England from France. See J. A. Picton, N. & Q. 5. 5. 283. 
Jonson uses this figure again in Celeb. Charis 9. 19-20. 

2. 6. 92 when I said, a glasse could speake, etc. Cf. i. 6. 80 f. 

2. 6. 100 And from her arched browes, etc. Swinburne says of 
this line : 'The wheeziest of barrel-organs, the most broken-winded 
of bagpipes, grinds or snorts out sweeter music than that.' Study of 
Ben Jonson, p. 104. 

2. 6. 104 Have you scene. Sir John Suckling (ed. 1874, p. 79) 
imitates this stanza : 

Hast thou seen the down in the air 

When wanton blasts have tossed it? 
Or the ship on the sea, 

When ruder winds have crossed it? 
Hast thou marked the crocodile's weeping, 

Or the fox's sleeping? 
Or hast viewed the peacock in his pride, 

Or the dove by his bride 

When he courts for his lechery? 
O, so fickle, O, so vain, O, so false, so false is she! 

2. 6. 104 a bright Lilly grow. The figures of the lily, the snow, 
and the swan's down have already been used in The Fox, Wks. 3. 
195. The source of that passage is evidently Martial, Epig. i. 115: 

Loto candidior puella cygno, 
Argento, nive, lilio, ligustro. 

174 The Diuell is an Asse [Acr n 

In this place Jonson seems to have more particularly in mind Epig. 
5- 37: 

Puella senibus dulcior mihi cygnis . . . 
Cui nee lapillos praeferas Erythraeos, . . . 
Nivesque primas liliumque non tactum. 

2. 7. 2, 3 that Wit of man will doe't. There is evidently aft 
ellipsis of some sort before that (cf. Abbott, 284). Perhaps 'pro 
vided' is to be understood. 

2. 7. 4 She shall no more be buz'd at. The metaphor is carried 
out in the words that follow, sweet meates 5, hum 6, flye-blowne 7. 
'Fly-blown' was a rather common term of opprobrium. Cf. Dekker, 
Satiromastix, Wks. i. 195 : 'Shal distaste euery vnsalted line, in their 
fly-blowne Comedies.' Jonson is very fond of this metaphor, and 
presses it beyond all endurance in New Inn, Act 2. Sc. 2, Wks. 5. 
344, 5, etc. 

2. 7. 13 I am resolu'd on't, Sir. See variants. Gifford points 
out the quibble on the word resolved. See Gloss. 

2. 7. 17 O! I could shoote mine eyes at him. Cf. Fox, Wks. 
3. 305 : 'That I could shoot mine eyes at him, like gun-stones !' 

2. 7. 22. See variants. The the is probably absorbed by the pre 
ceding dental. Cf. 5. 7. 9. 

2 - 7- 33 fine pac'd huishers. See note 4. 4. 201. 

2. 7. 38 turn'd my good affection. 'Not diverted or changed its 
course ; but, as appears from what follows, soured it. The word is 
used in a similar sense by Shakespeare : 

Has friendship such a faint and milky heart, 
It turns in less than two nights! 

Timon, 3. 2.' G. 

2. 8. 9, 10 That was your bed-fellow. Ingine, perhaps in antici 
pation of Fitzdottrel's advancement, employs a term usually applied 
to the nobility. Cf. K. Henry V. 2. 2. 8: 

Nay, but the man that was his bedfellow, 

Whom he had cloy'd and grac'd with princely favors. 

Steevens in a note on the passage points out that 'the familiar 
appellation of bedfellow, which appears strange to us, was common 
among the ancient nobility.' He quotes from A Knack to know a 
Knave, 1594; Look about you, 1600; Cynthia's Revenge, 1613; etc., 
where the expression is used in the sense of 'intimate companion' 
and applied to nobles. Jonson uses the term chamberfellow in 
Underwoods, Wks. 8. 353. 

2. 8. 20 An Academy. With this passage compare U. 62, Wks. 
8. 412 : 

ACT n] Notes 175 

There is up of late 

The Academy, where the gallants meet 
What! to make legs? yes, and to smell most sweet: 
All that they do at plays. O but first here 
They learn and study; and then practice there. 

Jonson again refers to 'the Academies' (apparently schools of 
deportment or dancing schools) in 3. 5. 33. 

2. 8. 33 Oracle-Foreman. See note i. 2. 2. 

2. 8. 59 any thing takes this dottrel. See note 2. 2. 49-50. 

2. 8. 64 Dicke Robinson. Collier says: 'This player may have 
been an original actor in some of Shakespeare's later dramas, and 
he just outlived the complete and final suppression of the stage.' 
His death and the date at which it occurred have been matters of 

His earliest appearance in any list of actors is at the end of 
Jonson's Catiline, 1611, with the King's Majesty's Servants. He 
was probably the youngest member of the company, and doubtless 
sustained a female part. Gifford believes that he took the part of 
Wittipol in the present play, though this is merely a conjecture. 
'The only female character he is known to have filled is the lady of 
Giovanus in The Second Maiden's Tragedy, but at what date is. 
uncertain ; neither do we know at what period he began to repre 
sent male characters.' Of the plays in which he acted, Collier men 
tions Beaumont and Fletcher's Bonduca, Double Marriage, Wife 
for a Month, and Wild Goose Chase (1621) ; and Webster's Duchess 
of Malfi, 1622. 

His name is found in the patent granted by James I. in 1619 and 
in that granted by Charles I. in 1625. Between 1629 and 1647 no 
notice of him occurs, and this is the last date at which we hear of 
him. 'His name follows that of Lowin in the dedication to the folio 
of Beaumont and Fletcher's works, published at that time.' Collier, 
Memoirs, p. 268. 

Jonson not infrequently refers to contemporary actors. Compare 
the Epitaph on Salathiel Pavy, Ep. 120; the speech of Venus in 
The Masque of Christmas, Wks. 7. 263 ; and the reference to Field 
and Burbage in Bart. Fair 5. 3. 

2. 8. 73 send frolicks! 'Frolics are couplets, commonly of an 
amatory or satirical nature, written on small slips of paper, and 
wrapt round a sweetmeat. A dish of them is usually placed on 
the table after supper, and the guests amuse themselves with sending 
them to one another, as circumstances seem to render them appro 
priate : this is occasionally productive of much mirth. I do not 
believe that the game is to be found in England ; though the drawing 
on Twelfth Night may be thought to bear some kind of coarse 
resemblance to it. On the continent I have frequently been present 
at it.' G. 

176 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

The NED. gives only one more example, from R. H. Arraignm. 
Whole Creature XIV. 2. 244 (1631) 'Moveable as Shittlecockes 
. . . or as Frolicks at Feasts, sent from man to man, returning 
againe at last, to the first man.' 

2. 8. 74, 5 burst your buttons, or not left you A seame. Cf. 
Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 359 : 'he breaks his buttons, and cracks seams at 
every saying he sobs out.' 

2. 8. 95, 103. See variants. 

2. 8. 100 A Forrest moues not. 'I suppose Trains means, "It 
is in vain to tell him of venison and pheasant, the right to the bucks 
in a whole forest will not move him." ' C. 

2. 8. 100 that forty pound. See 3. 3. 148. 

2. 8. 102 your bond Of Sixe; and Statute of eight hundred! 
I. e., of six, and eight hundred pounds. 'Statutes merchant, statutes 
staple, and recognizances in the nature of a statute staple were 
acknowledgements of debt made in writing before officers appointed 
for that purpose, and enrolled of record. They bound the lands of 
the debtor; and execution was awarded upon them upon default in 
payment without the ordinary process of an action. These securities 
were originally introduced for the encouragement of trade, by pro 
viding a sure and speedy remedy for the recovery of debts between 
merchants, and afterwards became common assurances, but have 
now become obsolete.' S. M. Leake, Law of Contracts, p. 95. 

Two of Pecunia's attendants in The Staple of News are Statute 
and Band (i. e. Bond, see U. 34). The two words are often men 
tioned together. In Dekker's Bankrouts Banquet (Non-dram. Wks. 
3. 371) statutes are served up to the bankrupts. 

Trains is evidently trying to impress Fitzdottrel with the impor 
tance of Merecraft's transactions. 


3. i. 8 Innes of Court. 'The four Inns of Court, Gray's Inn, 
Lincoln's Inn, the Inner, and the Middle Temple, have alone the 
right of admitting persons to practise as barristers, and that rank 
can only be attained by keeping the requisite number of terms as a 
student at one of those Inns.' Wh-C. 

Jonson dedicates Every Man out of his Humor 'To the Noblest 
Nurseries of Humanity and Liberty in the Kingdom, the Inns of 

3. i. 10 a good man. Gifford quotes Merch. of Ven. \. 3. 15 : 
'My meaning in saying he is a good man, is, to have you understand 
me, that he is sufficient.' Marston, Dutch Courtezan, Wks. 2. 57, 
uses the word in the same sense. 

ACT in] Notes 


3. i. 20 our two Pounds, the Compters. The London Compters 
or Counters were two sheriff's prisons for debtors, etc., mentioned 
as early as the I5th century. In Jonson's day they were the Poultry 
Counter and the Wood Street Counter. They were long a standing 
joke with the dramatists, who seem to speak from a personal 
acquaintance with them. Dekker (Roaring Girle, Wks. 3. 189) 
speaks of 'Wood Street College,' and Middleton (Phoenix, Wks. 
I. 192) calls them 'two most famous universities' and in another 
place 'the two city hazards, Poultry and Wood Street.' Jonson in 
Every Man in (Wks. I. 42) speaks of them again as 'your city 
pounds, the counters', and in Every Man out refers to the 'Master's 
side' (Wks. 2. 181) and the 'two-penny ward,' the designations 
for the cheaper quarters of the prison. 

3. i. 35 out of rerum natura. In rerum natura is a phrase used 
by Lucretius I. 25. It means, according to the Stanford Dictionary, 
'in the nature of things, in the physical universe.' In some cases it 
is practically equivalent to 'in existence.' Cf. 5*7. Worn., Wks. 3. 
382: 'Is the bull, bear, and horse, in rerum natura still?' 

3. 2. 12 a long vacation. The long vacation in the Inns of Court, 
which Jonson had in mind, lasts from Aug. 13 to Oct. 23. In 
Staple of News, Wks. 5. 170, he makes a similar thrust at the shop 
keepers : 

' Alas! they have had a pitiful hard time on't, 
A long vacation from their cozening. 

3. 2. 22 I bought Plutarch's Hues. T. North's famous transla 
tion first appeared in 1579. New editions followed in 1595. I 63> 
1610-12, and 1631. 

3. 2. 33 Buy him a Captaines place. The City Train Bands 
were a constant subject of ridicule for the dramatists. They are 
especially well caricatured by Fletcher in The Knight of the Burning 
Pestle, Act 5. In addition to the City Train Bands, the Fraternity 
of Artillery, now called The Honorable Artillery Company, formed 
a separate organization. The place of practice was the Artillery 
Garden in Bunhill Fields (see note 3. 2. 41). In spite of ridicule 
the Train Bands proved a source of strength during the Civil War 
(see Clarendon, Hist, of the Rebellion, ed. 1826, 4- 236 and Wh-C, 
Artillery Ground}. 

Jonson was fond of poking fun at the Train Bands. Cf. U. 62, 
Wks. 8. 409; Ev. Man in, Wks. i. 88; and Alchemist, Wks. 4. 13. 
Face, it will be remembered, had been 'translated suburb-captain' 
through Subtle's influence. 

The immediate occasion of Jonson's satire was doubtless the 
revival of military enthusiasm in 1614, of which Entick (Survey 2. 
115) gives the following account: 

178 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

'The military genius of the Londoners met with an opportunity, 
about this time, to convince the world that they still retained the 
spirit of their forefathers, should they be called out in the cause of 
their king and country. His majesty having commanded a general 
muster of the militia throughout the kingdom, the city of London 
not only mustered 6000 citizens completely armed, who performed 
their several evolutions with surprizing dexterity; but a martial 
spirit appeared amongst the rising generation. The children endeav 
oured to imitate their parents ; chose officers, formed themselves 
into companies, marched often into the fields with colours flying and 
beat of drums, and there, by frequent practice, grew up expert in 
the military exercises.' 

3. 2. 35 Cheapside. Originally Cheap, or West Cheap, a street 
between the Poultry and St. Paul's, a portion of the line from 
Charing Cross to the Royal Exchange, and from Holborn to the 
Bank of England. 

'At the west end of this Poultrie and also of Buckles bury, begin- 
neth the large street of West Cheaping, a market-place so called, 
which street stretcheth west till ye come to the little conduit by 
Panic's Gate.' Stow, ed. Thorns, p. 99. 

The glory of Cheapside was Goldsmith's Row (see note 3. 5. 2). 
It was also famous in early times for its 'Ridings,' and during 
Jonson's period for its 'Cross,' its 'Conduit,' and its 'Standard' 
(see note i. i. 56 and Wh-C). 

3. 2. 35 Scarfes. 'Much worn by knights and military officers in 
the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.' Planche. 

3. 2. 35 Cornehill. Cornhill, between the Poultry and Leaden- 
hall Street, an important portion of the greatest thoroughfare in the 
world, was, says Stow, 'so called of a corn market time out of 
mind there holden.' In later years it was provided with a pillory and 
stocks, a prison, called the Tun, for street offenders, a conduit of 
'sweet water', and a standard. See Wh-C. 

3. 2. 38 the posture booke. A book descriptive of military evo 
lutions, etc. H. Peacham's Compleat Gentleman, 1627 (p. 300, 
quoted by Wheatley, Ev. Man in), gives a long list of 'Postures of 
the Musquet' and G. Markham's Souldier's Accidence gives another. 
Cf . Tale Tub, Wks. 6. 218 : 

All the postures 
Of the train'd bands of the country. 

3. 2. 41 Finsbury. In 1498, 'certain grounds, consisting of gar 
dens, orchards, &c. on the north side of Chiswell-street, and called 
Bunhill or Bunhill- fields, within the manor of Finsbury, were by the 
mayor and commonalty of London, converted into a large field, 
containing n acres, and n perches, now known by the name of the 

ACT in] Notes 


Artillery-ground, for their train-bands, archers, and other military 
citizens, to exercise in.' Entick, Survey I. 441. 

In 1610 the place had become neglected, whereupon commissioners 
were appointed to reduce it 'into such order and state for the 
archers as they were in the beginning of the reign of King Henry 
VIII.' Ibid. 2. 109. See also Stow, Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 159. 

Dekker (Shomaker's Holiday, Wks. i. 29) speaks of being 'turnd 
to a Turk, and set in Finsburie for boyes to shoot at', and Nash 
(Pierce Pennilesse, Wks. 2. 128) and Jonson (Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 
507) make precisely similar references. Master Stephen in Every 
Man in (Wks. i. 10) objects to keeping company with the 'archers 
of Finsbury.' Cf. also the elaborate satire in U. 62, Wks. 8. 409. 

3. 2. 45 to traine the youth 

Of London, in the military truth. Cf. Underwoods 62: 

Thou seed-plot of the war! that hast not spar'd 
Powder or paper to bring up the youth 
Of London, in the military truth. 

Gifford believes these lines to be taken from a contemporary posture- 
book, but there is no evidence of quotation in the case of Under 

3. 3. 22, 3 This comes of wearing 

Scarlet, gold lace, and cut- works! etc. Webster has a passage 
very similar to this in the Devil's Law Case, Wks. 2. 37 f . : 

'Ari. This comes of your numerous wardrobe. 

Rom. Ay, and wearing cut-work, a pound a purl. 

Ari. Your dainty embroidered stockings, with overblown roses, 
to hide your gouty ankles. 

Rom. And wearing more taffata for a garter, than would serve 
the galley dung-boat for streamers. . . . 

Rom. And resorting to your whore in hired velvet with a 
spangled copper fringe at her netherlands. 

Ari. Whereas if you had stayed at Padua, and fed upon cow- 
trotters, and fresh beef to supper,' etc., etc. 

For 'cut-works' see note I. I. 128. 

3. 3. 24 With your blowne roses. Compare i. i. 127, and B. & 
Fl., Cupid's Revenge : 

No man to warm your shirt, and blow your roses. 

and Jonson, Ep. 97, Wks. 8. 201 : 

His rosy ties and garters so o'erblown. 

3. 3. 25 Godwit. The godwit was formerly in great repute as a 
table delicacy. Thomas Muffett in Health's Improvement, p. 99, 
says : 'A fat godwit is so fine and light meat, that noblemen (yea, 

180 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

and merchants too, by your leave) stick not to buy them at four 
nobles a dozen.' 

Cf. also Sir T. Browne, Norf. Birds, Wks., 1835, 4. 319: 'God- 
wyts . . . accounted the daintiest dish in England ; and, I 
think, for the bigness of the biggest price.' Jonson mentions the 
godwit in this connection twice in the 5*7. Worn. (Wks. 3. 350) and 
388), and in Horace, Praises of a Country Life (IV ks. g. 121) trans 
lates 'attagen lonicus' by 'Ionian godwit.' 

3. 3. 26 The Globes, and Mermaides! Theatres and taverns. 
Mr. Halliwell-Phillipps has proved that the Globe Theatre on the 
Bankside, Southwark, the summer theatre of Shakespeare and his 
fellows, was built in 1599. It was erected from materials brought 
by Richard Burbage and Peter Street from the theatre in Shoreditch. 
On June 29, 1613, it was destroyed by fire, but was rebuilt without 
delay in a superior style, and this time with a roof of tile, King 
James contributing to the cost. Chamberlaine, writing to Alice 
Carleton (June 30, 1614), calls the Globe Playhouse 'the fairest in 
England.' It was pulled down Apr. 15, 1644. 

Only the Lord Chamberlain's Company (the King's Men) seems 
to have acted here. It was the scene of several of Shakespeare's 
plays and two of Jonson's, Every Man out and Every Man in (Hal- 
liwell-Phillips, Illustrations, p. 43). The term 'summer theatre' is 
applicable only to the rebuilt theatre (ibid., p. 44). In Ev. Man 
out (quarto, Wks. 2. 196) Johnson refers to 'this fair-fitted Globe', 
and in the Execration upon Vulcan (Wks. 8. 404) to the burning of 
the 'Globe, the glory of the Bank.' In Poetaster (Wks. 2. 430) 
he uses the word again as a generic term: 'your Globes, and your 

There seem to have been two Mermaid Taverns, one of which 
stood in Bread Street with passage entrances from Cheapside and 
Friday Street, and the other in Cornhill. They are often referred 
to by the dramatists. Cf. the famous lines written by Francis 
Beaumont to Ben Jonson, B. & Fl., Wks., ed. 1883, 2. 708; City 
Match, O. PL 9. 334, etc. Jonson often mentions the Mermaid. 
Cf . Inviting a Friend, Wks. 8. 205 : 

Is a pure cup of rich Canary Wine, 

Which is the Mermaid's now, but shall be mine. 

On the famous Voyage, Wks. 8. 234: 

At Bread-Street's Mermaid having dined, and merry, 
Proposed to go to Holborn in a wherry. 

Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 356-7 : 'your Three Cranes, Mitre, and Mer 
maid-men !' 

ACT in] Notes 181 

3. 3. 28 In veluet! Velvet was introduced into England in the 
fifteenth century, and soon became popular as an article of luxury 
(see Hill's Hist, of Eng. Dress i. 145 f.). 

3. 3. 30 I' the Low-countries. Then went he to the Low Coun 
tries; but returning soone he betook himself to his wonted studies. 
In his service in the Low Countries, he had, in the face of both the 
campes, killed ane enemie and taken opima spolia from him.' Con 
versations with William Drummond, Wks. 9. 388. 

In the Epigram To True Soldiers Jonson says : 

I love 
Your great profession, which I once did prove. 

Wks. 8. 211. 

3. 3. 32 a wench of a stoter! See variants. The word is not 
perfectly legible in the folios, which I have consulted, but is 
undoubtedly as printed. Cunningham believes 'stoter' to be a cheap 
coin current in the camps. This supplies a satisfactory sense, cor 
responding to the 'Sutlers wife, ... of two blanks' in the 
following line. 

3- 3- 33 of two blanks! 'Jonson had Horace in his thoughts, and 
has, not without some ingenuity, parodied several loose passages of 
one of his satires.' G. Gifford is apparently referring to the close 
of Bk. 2. Sat. 3. 

3. 3. 51 vn-to-be-melted. Cf. Every Man in', Wks. i. 36: 'and 
in un-in-one-breath-utterable skill, sir.' New Inn, Wks. 5. 404: you 
shewed a neglect Un-to-be-pardon'd.' 

3. 3. 62 Master of the Dependances! See Introduction, pp. 
Ivi, Ivii. 

3. 3. 69 the roaring manner. Gifford defines it as the 'language 
of bullies affecting a quarrel' (Wks. 4. 483). The 'Roaring Boy' 
continued under various designations to infest the streets of London 
from the reign of Elizabeth until the beginning of the eighteenth 
century. Spark (Somer's Tracts 2. 266) says that they were 'per 
sons prodigall and of great expence, who having runne themselves 
into debt, were constrained to run into factions to defend themselves 
from danger of the law.' He adds that divers of the nobility 
afforded them maintenance, in return for which 'they entered into 
many desperate enterprises.' 

Arthur Wilson (Life of King James I., p. 28), writing of the 
disorderly state of the city in 1604, says: 'Divers Sects of vitious 
Persons going under the Title of Roaring Boyes, Bravadoes, Roy- 
sters, &c. commit many insolences; the Streets swarm night and 
day with bloody quarrels, private Duels fomented,' etc. 

Kastril, the 'angry boy' in the Alchemist, and Val Cutting and 
Knockem in Bartholomew Fair are roarers, and we hear of them 
under the title of 'terrible boys' in the Silent Woman (Wks. 3. 

182 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

349). Cf. also Sir Thomas Overbury's Character of a Roaring Boy 
(ed. Morley, p. 72) : 'He sleeps with a tobacco-pipe in his mouth; 
and his first prayer in the morning is he may remember whom he 
fell out with over night.' 

3. 3. 71 the vapours. This ridiculous practise is satirized in 
Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 3 (see also stage directions). 

3. 3. 77 a distast. The quarrel with Wittipol. 

3. 3. 79 the hand-gout. Jonson explains the expression in Mag 
netic Lady, Wks. 6. 61. 

You cannot but with trouble put your hand 
Into your pocket to discharge a reckoning, 
And this we sons of physic do call chiragra, 
A kind of cramp, or hand-gout. 

Cf. also Overbury's Characters, ed. Morley, p. 63 : 'his liberality 
can never be said to be gouty-handed.' 

3. 3. 81 Mint. Until its removal to the Royal Mint on Tower 
Hill in 1810, the work of coinage was carried on in the Tower of 
London. Up to 1640, when banking arose, merchants were in the 
habit of depositing their bullion and cash in the Tower Mint, under 
guardianship of the Crown (see Wh-C. under Royal Mint, and 
History of Banking in all the Leading Nations, London, 1896, 2. l). 

3. 3. 86-8 let ... hazard. Merecraft seems to mean: 'You 
are in no hurry. Pray therefore allow me to defer your business 
until I have brought opportune aid to this gentleman's distresses at 
a time when his fortunes are in a hazardous condition.' The preg 
nant use of the verb timing and the unusual use of the word terms 
for a period of time render the meaning peculiarly difficult. 

3. 3. 106 a Businesse. This was recognized as the technical 
expression. Sir Thomas Overbury ridicules it in his Characters, 
ed. Morley, p. 72 : 'If any private quarrel happen among our great 
courtiers, he (the Roaring Boy) proclaims the business that's the 
word, the business as if the united force of the Roman Catholics 
were making up for Germany.' Jonson ridicules the use of the 
word in similar fashion in the Masque of Mercury Vindicated from 
the Alchemists. 

3. 3- 133 hauings. Jonson uses the expression again in Ev. Man 
in, Wks. i. 29, and Gipsies Met., Wks. 7. 364. It is also used in 
Muse's Looking Glasse, O. PI. 9. 175. 

3. 3. 147 such sharks! Shift in Ev. Man in is described as a 
'threadbare shark.' Cf. also Earle, Microcosmography, ed. Morley, 
P- 173- 

3. 3. 148 an old debt of forty. See 2. 8. 100. 

3. 3. 149 the Bermudas. See note 2. i. 144. Nares thinks that 
the real Bermudas are referred to here. 

ACT in] Notes 


3- 3- 155 You shall ha' twenty pound on't. As commission on 
the two hundred. Ten in the hundred' was the customary rate at 
this period (see Staple of News, Wks. 5. 189). 

3. 3. 165 S*. Georges-tide? From a very early period the 23d 
of April was dedicated to St. George. From the time of Henry V. 
the festival had been observed with great splendor at Windsor and 
other towns, and bonfires were built (see Shak., i Henry VI. I. i). 
The festival continued to be celebrated until 1567, when Elizabeth 
ordered its discontinuance. James I., however, kept the 23d of April 
to some extent, and the revival of the feast in all its glories was 
only prevented by the Civil War. So late as 1614 it was the custom 
for fashionable gentlemen to wear blue coats on St. George's Day, 
probably in imitation of the blue mantle worn by the Knights of 
the Garter, an order created at the feast of St. George in 1344 
(see Chambers' Book of Days i. 540). 

The passages relating to this custom are Ram Alley, O. PI, 2d 
ed., 5. 486: 

By Dis, I will be knight, 
Wear a blue coat on great St. George's day, 
And with my fellows drive you all from Paul's 
For this attempt. 

Runne and a great Cast, Epigr. 33 : 

With's coram nomine keeping greater sway 
Than a court blew-coat on St. George's day. 

From these passages Nares concludes 'that some festive ceremony 
was carried on at St. Paul's on St. George's day annually; that the 
court attended ; that the blue-coats, or attendants, of the courtiers, 
were employed and authorised to keep order, and drive out refrac 
tory persons ; and that on this occasion it was proper for a knight 
to officiate as blue coat to some personage of higher rank.' 

In the Conversations with Drummond, Jonson's Wks. 9. 393, we 
read : 'Northampton was his mortal enimie for beating, on a St. 
George's day, one of his attenders.' Pepys speaks of there being 
bonfires in honor of St. George's Day as late as Apr. 23, 1666. 

3. 3. 166 chaines? PLV. Of gold, and pearle. The gold 
chain was formerly a mark of rank and dignity, and a century 
before this it had been forbidden for any one under the degree of 
a gentleman of two hundred marks a year to wear one (Statutes of 
the Realm, 7 Henry VIII. c. 6). They were worn by the Lord Mayors 
(Dekker, Shotnaker's Holiday, Wks. I. 42), rich merchants and 
aldermen (Glapthorne, Wit for a Constable, Wks., ed. 1874, * 
201-3), and later became the distinctive mark of the upper servant 
in a great family, especially the steward (see Nares and Ev. Man 
out, Wks. 2. 31). Massinger (City Madam, Wks., p. 334) speaks 

184 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

of wearing a chain of gold 'on solemn days.' With the present 
passage cf. Underwoods 62, Wks. 8. 410 : 

If they stay here but till St. George's day. 

All ensigns of a war are not yet dead, 

Nor marks of wealth so from a nation fled, 

But they may see gold chains and pearl worn then, 

Lent by the London dames to the Lords' men. 

3. 3. 170 take in Pimlico. 'Near Hoxton, a great summer resort 
in the early part of the I7th century and famed for its cakes, cus 
tards, and Derby ale. The references to the Hoxton Pimlico are 
numerous in our old dramatists.' Wh-C. It is mentioned among 
other places in Greene's Tu Quoque, The City Match, fol. 1639, 
Newes from Hogsdon, 1598, and Dekker, Roaring Girle, Wks. 3. 
219, where it is spoken of as 'that nappy land of spice-cakes.' In 1609 
a tract was published, called Pimlyco or Runne Red-Cap, 'tis a Mad 
World at Hogsdon. 

Jonson refers to it repeatedly. Cf. Alch., Wks. 4. 155 : 

Gallants, men and women, 

And of all sorts, tag-rag, been seen to flock here, 
In threaves, these ten weeks, as to a second Hogsden, 
In days of Pimlico and Eye-bright. 

Cf. also Alch., Wks. 4. 151; Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 357; and this play 
4. 4. 164. In Underwoods 62 the same expression is used as in this 
passage : 

What a strong fort old Pimlico had been! 
How it held out! how, last, 'twas taken in! 

Take in in the sense of 'capture' is used again in Every Man in, 
Wks. I. 64, and frequently in Shakespeare (see Schmidt). The 
reference here, as Cunningham suggests, is to the Finsbury sham 
rights. Hogsden was in the neighborhood of Finsbury, and the 
battles were doubtless carried into its territory. 

3- 3- 173 Some Bristo-stone or Cornish counterfeit. Cf. Hey- 
wood, Wks. 5. 317: 'This Jewell, a plaine Bristowe stone, a counter 
feit.' See Gloss. 

3. 3. 184, 5 I know your Equiuocks: 

You'are growne the better Fathers of 'hem o' late. 'Satir 
ically reflecting on the Jesuits, the great patrons of equivoca 
tion.' W. 

'Or rather on the Puritans, I think; who were sufficiently 
obnoxious to this charge. The Jesuits would be out of place 
here.' G. 

Why the Puritans are any more appropriate Gifford does not 
vouchsafe to tell us. So far as I have been able to discover the 

ACT in] Notes 185 

Puritans were never called 'Fathers,' their regular appellation being 
'the brethren' (cf. Alch. and Bart. Fair). The Puritans were 
accused of a distortion of Scriptural texts to suit their own purposes, 
instances of which occur in the dramas mentioned above. On the 
whole, however, equivocation is more characteristic of the Jesuits. 
They were completely out of favor at this time. Under the general 
ship of Claudio Acquaviva, 1581-1615, they first began to have a 
preponderatingly evil reputation. In 1581 they were banished from 
England, and in 1601 the decree of banishment was repeated, this 
time for their suspected share in the Gunpowder Plot. 

3. 3. 206, 7 Come, gi' me Ten pieces more. The transaction 
with Guilthead is perhaps somewhat confusing. Fitzdottrel has 
offered to give his bond for two hundred pieces, if necessary. 
Merecraft's 'old debt of forty' (3. 3. 149), the fifty pieces for the 
ring, and the hundred for Everill's new office (3. 3. 60 and 83) 'all 
but make two hundred.' Fitzdottrel furnishes a hundred of this in 
cash, with the understanding that he receive it again of the gold 
smith when he signs the bond (3. 3. 194). He returns, however, 
without the gold, though he seals the bond (3. 5. 1-3). Of the 
hundred pieces received in cash, twenty go to Guilthead as com 
mission (3. 3. 155). This leaves forty each for Merecraft and 

3. 3. 213 how th' Asse made his diuisions. See Fab. cix, 
Fabulae Aesopicae, Leipzig, 1810, Leo, Asinus et Vulpes. Harsnet 
(Declaration, p. no) refers to this fable, and Dekker made a 
similar application in Match me in London, 1631, Wks. 4. 145 : 

King. Father He tell you a Tale, vpon a time 
The Lyon Foxe and silly Asse did Jarre, 
Grew friends and what they got, agreed to share: 
A prey was tane, the bold Asse did diuide it 
Into three equall parts, the Lyon spy'd it. 
And scorning two such sharers, moody grew, 
And pawing the Asse, shooke him as I shake you . . . 
And in rage tore him peece meale, the Asse thus dead, 
The prey was by the Foxe distributed 
Into three parts agen; of which the Lyon 
Had two for his share, and the Foxe but one: 
The Lyon (smiling) of the Foxe would know 
Where he had this wit, he the dead Asse did show. 

Valasc. An excellent Tale. 

King. Thou art that Asse. 

3. 3. 214 Much good do you. So in Sil. Worn., Wks. 3. 398: 
'Much good do him.' 

3. 3. 217 And coozen i' your bullions. Massinger's Fatal 
Dozvry, Wks., p. 272, contains the following passage: 'The other 
is his dressing-block, upon whom my lord lays all his clothes and 

1 86 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT in 

fashions ere he vouchsafes them his own person: you shall see 
him ... at noon in the Bullion,' etc. In a note on this pas 
sage (Wks. 3. 390, ed. 1813) Gifford advanced the theory that the 
bullion was 'a piece of finery, which derived its denomination from 
the large globular gilt buttons, still in use on the continent.' In 
his note on the present passage, he adds that it was probably 
'adopted by gamblers and others, as a mark of wealth, to entrap the 

Nares was the next man to take up the word. He connected it 
with 'bullion; Copper-plates set on the Breast-leathers and Bridles 
of Horses for ornament' (Phillips 1706). 'I suspect that it also 
meant, in colloquial use, copper lace, tassels, and ornaments in 
imitation of gold. Hence contemptuously attributed to those who 
affected a finery above their station.' 

Dyce (B. & Fl., Wks. 7. 291) was the first to disconnect the word 
from bullion meaning uncoined gold or silver. He says : 'Bullions, 
I apprehend, mean some sort of hose or breeches, which were 
boiled or bulled, i. e. swelled, puffed out (cf. Sad. Shep., Act I. 
Sc. 2, bulled nosegays').' 

The NED. gives 'prob. a. F. bouillon in senses derived from that 
of "bubble." ' 

Besides the passages already given, the word occurs in B. & Fl., 
The Chances, Wks. 7. 291 : 

Why should not bilbo raise him, or a pair of bullions? 

Beggar's Bush, Wks. 9. 81 : 

In his French doublet, with his blister'd (ist fol. baster'd) bullions. 

Brome, Sparagus Garden, Wks. 3. 152 : 

shaking your 
Old Bullion Tronkes over my Trucklebed. 

Gesta Gray in Nichols' Prog. Q. Eliz. 3. 341. A, 1594: 'A bullion- 
hose is .best to go a woeing in ; for tis full of promising promon 

3. 3. 231 too-too-vnsupportable! This reduplicated form is 
common in Shakespeare. See Merch. of Ven. 2. 6. 42 ; Hamlet i. 2. 
129; and Schmidt, Diet. Jonson uses it in Sejanus, Wks. 3. 54, and 
elsewhere. It is merely a strengthened form of too. (See Halliwell 
in Sh. Soc. Papers, 1884, i. 39, and Hamlet, ed. Furness, nth ed., i. 
41.) Jonson regularly uses the hyphen. 

3. 4. 13 Cioppinos. Jonson spells the word as if it were Italian, 
though he says in the same sentence that the custom of wearing 
chopines is Spanish. The NED., referring to Skeat, Trans. Phil. 
Soc., 1885-7, P- 79> derives it from Sp. chapa, a plate of metal, etc. 

ACT in] Notes 187 

'The Eng. writers c 1600 persistently treated the word as Italian, 
even spelling it cioppino, pi. cioppini, and expressly associated it 
with Venice, so that, although not recorded in Italian Diets, it was 
app. temporarily fashionable there.' The statement of the NED. 
that 'there is little or no evidence of their use in England (except 
on the stage)' seems to be contradicted by the quotation from 
Stephen Gosson's Pleasant Quippes (note i. i. 128). References to 
the chopine are common in the literature of the period (see Nares 
and NED.}. I have found no instances of the Italianated form 
earlier than Jonson, and it may be original with him. He uses the 
plural cioppini in Cynthia's Revels, Wks. 2. 241. See note 4. 4. 69. 

3. 4. 32 your purchase. Cf. Alch., Wks. 4. 150, and Fox, Wks. 
3. 168: 'the cunning purchase of my wealth.' Cunningham (Wks. 

3. 498) says: 'Purchase, as readers of Shakespeare know, was a 
cant term among thieves for the plunder they acquired, also the act 
of acquiring it. It is frequently used by Jonson.' 

3. 4. 35 Pro'uedor. Gifford's change to provedore is without 
authority. The word is provedor, Port., or proveedor, Sp., and is 
found in Hakluyt, Voyages, 3. 701; G. Sandys, Trav., p. 6 (1632) ; 
and elsewhere, with various orthography, but apparently never with 
the accent. 

3. 4. 43 Gentleman huisher. For the gentleman-usher see note 

4. 4. 134. The forms usher and huisher seem to be used "without 
distinction. The editors' treatment of the form is inconsistent. See 
variants, and compare 2. 7. 33. 

3. 4. 45-8 wee poore Gentlemen . . . piece. Cf. Webster, 
Devil's Law Case, Wks. 2. 38: 'You have certain rich city chuffs, 
that when they have no acres of their own, they will go and plough 
up fools, and turn them into excellent meadow.' Also The Fox 
2. i : 

if Italy 

Have any glebe more fruitful than these fellows, 
I am deceived. 

As source of the latter Dr. L. H. Holt (Mod. Lang. Notes, June, 
J 9O5) gives Plautus, Epidicus 2. 3. 306-7: 

nullum esse opinor ego agrum in agro Attico 
aeque feracem quam hie est noster Periphanes. 

3. 5. 2 the row. Stow (Survey, ed. 1633, p. 391) says that Gold 
smith's Row, 'betwixt Breadstreete end and the Crosse in Cheape,' 
is 'the most beautifull Frame of faire houses and shops, that be 
within the Wals of London, or elsewhere in England.' It contained 
'ten faire dwelling houses, and fourteene shops' beautified with 
elaborate ornamentation. Howes (ed. 1631, p. 1045) says that at his 
time (1630) Goldsmith's Row 'was much abated of her wonted 

1 88 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx in 

store of Goldsmiths, which was the beauty of that famous streete.' 
A similar complaint is made in the Calendar of State Papers, 
1619-23, p. 457, where Goldsmith's Row is characterized as the 
'glory and beauty of Cheapside.' Paul Hentzner (p. 45) speaks of 
it as surpassing all the other London streets. He mentions the 
presence there of a 'gilt tower, with a fountain that plays.' 

3. 5. 29, 30 answering 

With the French-time, in flexure of your body. This may 
mean bowing in the deliberate and measured fashion of the French, 
or perhaps it refers to French musical measure. See Gloss. 

3- 5- 33 tne very Academies. See note 2. 8. 20. 

3- 5- 35 play-time. Collier says that the usual hour of dining in 
the city was twelve o'clock, though the passage in Case is Altered, 
Wks. 6. 331, seems to indicate an earlier hour: 

Eat when your stomach serves, saith the physician, 
Not at eleven and six. 

The performance of plays began at three o'clock. Cf. Histrio- 
mastix, 1610: 

Come to the Town-house, and see a play: 
At three a'clock it shall begin. 

See Collier, Annals 3. 377. Sir Humphrey Mildmay, in his Ms. 
Diary (quoted Annals 2. 70), speaks several times of going to the 
play-house after dinner. 

3. 5. 39 his Damme. NED. gives a use of the phrase 'the 
devil and his dam' as early as Piers Plowman, 1393. The 'devil's 
dam' was later applied opprobriously to a woman. It is used thus 
in Shakespeare, Com. Err. 4. 3. 51. The expression is common 
throughout the literature of the period. 

3. 5. 43 But to be scene to rise, and goe away. Cf . Dekker, Guls 
Horne-booke, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 253 : 'Now sir, if the writer be a 
fellow that hath either epigrammd you, or hath had a flirt at your 
mistris, . . . you shall disgrace him worse then by tossing him 
in a blancket . . . if, in the middle of his play,. . . . you 
rise with a screwd and discontented face from your stoole to be 
gone : no matter whether the Scenes be good or no ; the better they 
are the worse do you distast them.' 

3. 5. 45, 6 But say, that he be one, 

Wi' not be aw'd! but laugh at you. In the Prologue to Mas- 
singer's Guardian we find : 

nor dares he profess that when 
The critics laugh, he'll laugh at them agen. 
(Strange self-love in a writer!) 

ACT in] Notes 189 

Gifford says of this passage: 'This Prologue contains many sar- 
castick allusions to Old Ben, who produced, about this time, his 
Tale of a Tub, and his Magnetic Lady, pieces which failed of suc 
cess, and which, with his usual arrogance, (strange self-love in a 
writer!) he attributed to a want of taste in the audience.' Mas- 
singer's Wks., ed. 1805, 4. 121.) 

The Guardian appeared in 1633, two years after the printing of 
The Devil is an Ass. It seems certain that the reference is to the 
present passage. 

3. 5. 47 pay for'his dinner himselfe. The custom of inviting 
the poet to dinner or supper seems to have been a common one. 
Dekker refers to it in the Guls Horne-booke, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 
249. Cf. also the Epilogue to the present play. 

3. 5. 47 Perhaps, He would doe that twice, rather then thanke 
you. This ill-timed compliment to himself, Jonson might have 
spared, with some advantage to his judgment, at least, if not his 
modesty.' G. 

3. 5. 53. See variants. Gifford's change destroys the meaning 
and is palpably ridiculous. 

3- 5- 77 your double cloakes. 'I. e., a cloake adapted for dis 
guises, which might be worn on either side. It was of different 
colours, and fashions. This turned cloke with a false beard (of 
which the cut and colour varied) and a black or yellow peruke, fur 
nished a ready and effectual mode of concealment, which is now lost 
to the stage.' G. 

3. 6. 2 canst thou get ne'r a bird? Throughout this page Mere- 
craft and Pug ring the changes on Pitfall's name. 

3. 6. 15, 16 TRA. You must send, Sir. 

The Gentleman the ring. Traines, of course, is merely carrying 
out Merecraft's plot to 'achieve the ring' (3. 5. 67). Later (4. 4. 
60) Merecraft is obliged to give it up to Wittipol. 

3. 6. 34-6 What'll you do, Sir? . . . 

Run from my flesh, if I could. For a similar construction cf. 
I. 3. 21 and note. 

3. 6. 38, 9 Woe to the seuerall cudgells, 

Must suffer on this backe! Adapted from Plautus, Captivi 3. 
4- 650: 

Vae illis uirgis miseris, quae hodie in tergo morientur meo. 

(Gifford mentions the fact that this is adapted from the classics. 
I am indebted for the precise reference to Dr. Lucius H. Holt.) 

3. 6. 40 the vse of it is so present. For other Latinisms cf. 
resume, i. 6. 149; salts, 2. 6. 75; confute, 5. 6. 18, etc. 

3. 6. 61 I'll ... See variants. The original reading is 
undoubtedly wrong. 

190 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 


4. i. i referring to Commissioners. In the lists of patents we 
frequently read of commissions specially appointed for examination 
of the patent under consideration. The King's seal was of course 
necessary to render the grant valid. 

4. i. 5 S r . lohn Monie-man. See Introduction, p. Ixxiii. 

4. i. 37 I will haue all piec'd. Cf. Mag. La., Wks. 6. 50: 

Item. I heard they were out. 

Nee. But they are pieced, and put together again. 

4. i. 38 ill solder'd! Cf. The Forest, 12, Epistle to Elizabeth, 
etc. : 'Solders cracked friendship.' 

4. 2. ii Haue with 'hem. 'An idea borrowed from the gaming 
table, being the opposite of "have at them." ' C. 

4. 2. ii the great Carroch. See note i. 6. 214. 

4. 2. 12 with my Ambler, bare. See note 4. 4. 202. 

4. 2. 22 I not loue this. See note i. 6. 14. 

4. 2. 26 Tooth-picks. This was an object of satire to the drama 
tists of the period. Nares says that they 'appear to have been first 
brought into use in Italy ; whence the travellers who had visited 
that country, particularly wished to exhibit that symbol of gentility.' 
It is referred to as the mark of a traveller by Shakespeare, King 
John, i. i (cited by Gifford) : 

Now your traveller, 
He, and his tooth-pick, at my worship's mess. 

Overbury {Character of An Affected Traveller, ed. Morley, p. 35) 
speaks of the pick-tooth as 'a main part of his behavior.' 

It was also a sign of foppery. Overbury (p. 31) describes the 
courtier as wearing 'a pick-tooth in his hat,' and Massinger, Grand 
Duke of Florence, Act 3 (quoted by Nares), mentions 'my case of 
tooth-picks, and my silver fork' among the articles 'requisite to the 
making up of a signior.' John Earle makes a similar reference in 
his Character of An Idle Gallant (ed. Morley, p. 179), and Furnivall 
(Stubbes' Anatomy, p. 77*) quotes from Laugh and lie downe: or 
The Worldes Folly, London, 1605, 4to : 'The next was a nimble- 
witted and glib-tongu'd fellow, who, having in his youth spent his 
wits in the Arte of love, was now become the jest of wit. . . . 
The picktooth in the mouth, the flower in the eare, the brush upon 
the beard; . . . and what not that was unneedefull,' etc. 

It is a frequent subject of satire in Jonson. Cf. Ev. Man out, 
Wks. 2. 124; Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 218, 248; Fox, Wks. 3. 266. See 
also Dekker, Wks. 3. 280. 

4. 2. 63 What vile Fucus is this. The abuse of face-painting is 
a favorite subject of satire with the moralists and dramatists of the 

ACT iv] Notes 


period. Stubbes (Anatomy of Abuses, Part i, pp. 64-8) devotes a 
long section to the subject. Dr. Furnivall in the notes to this pas 
sage, pp. 271-3, should also be consulted. Brome satirizes it in the 
City Wit, Wks. 2. 300. Lady Politick Would-be in the Fox is of 
course addicted to the habit, and a good deal is said on the subject 
in Epicoene. Dekker (West-ward Hoe, Wks. 2. 285) has a passage 
quite similar in spirit to Jonson's satire. 

4. 2. 71 the very Infanta of the Giants! Cf. Massinger and 
Field, Fatal Dowry 4. i : 'O that I were the infanta queen of 
Europe !' Pecunia in the Staple of News is called the 'Infanta of 
the mines.' Spanish terms were fashionable at this time. Cf. the 
use of Grandees, i. 3. It is possible that the reference here is to 
the Infanta Maria. See Introduction, p. xviii. 

4. 3. 5, 6 It is the manner of Spaine, to imbrace onely, 

Neuer to kisse. Cf. Minsheu's Pleasant and Delightfull Dia 
logues, pp. 51-2: 'W. I hold that the greatest cause of dissolute- 
nesse in some women in England is this custome of kissing pub- 
likely. ... G. In Spaine doe not men vse to kisse women? 
/. Yes the husbands kisse their wiues, but as if it were behinde 
seuen walls, where the very light cannot see them.' 

4- 3 33 * Decayes the fore-teeth, that should guard the 
tongue; etc. Cf. Timber, ed. Schelling, 13. 24: 'It was excellently 
said of that philosopher, that there was a wall or parapet of teeth 
set in our mouth, to restrain the petulancy of our words ; that the 
rashness of talking should not only be retarded by the guard and 
watch of our heart, but be fenced in and defended by certain 
strengths placed in the mouth itself, and within the lips.' 

Professor Schelling quotes Plutarch, Moralia, de Garrulitate 3, 
translated by Goodwin : 'And yet there is no member of human 
bodies that nature has so strongly enclosed within a double fortifica 
tion as the tongue, entrenched within a barricade of sharp teeth, to the 
end that, if it refuses to obey and keep silent when reason "presses 
the glittering reins" within, we should fix our teeth in it till the 
blood comes rather than surfer inordinate and unseasonable din' 
(4- 223). 

4. 3. 39 Mad-dames. See variants. The editors have taken out 
of the jest whatever salt it possessed, and have supplied meaningless 
substitutes. Gifford followed the same course in his edition of 
Ford (see Ford's Wks. 2. 81), where, however, he changes to 
Mad-dam. Such gratuitous corruptions are inexplicable. Cf. Tale 
Tub, Wks. 6. 172 : 

Here is a strange thing call'd a lady, a mad-dame. 

4. 3. 45 Their seruants. A common term for a lover. Cf. Sil. 
Worn., Wks. 3. 364. 

192 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

4. 3. 51. See variants. There are several mistakes in the assign 
ment of speeches throughout this act. Not all of Gifford's changes, 
however, are to be accepted without question. Evidently, if the 
question where? is to be assigned to Wittipol, the first speech must 
be an aside, as it is inconceivable that Merecraft should introduce 
Fitzdottrel first under his own name, and then as the 'Duke of 

My conception of the situation is this : Pug is playing the part of 
gentleman usher. He enters and announces to Merecraft that Fitz 
dottrel and his wife are coming. Merecraft whispers : 'Master 
Fitzdottrel and his wife! where?' and then, as they enter, turns to 
Wittipol and introduces them; 'Madame,' etc. 

4. 4. 30 Your Allum Scagliola, etc. Many of the words in this 
paragraph are obscure, and a few seem irrecoverable. Doubtless 
Jonson picked them up from various medical treatises and advertise 
ments of his day. I find no trace of Abezzo, which may of course 
be a misprint for Arezzo. The meanings assigned to Pol-dipedra 
and Porcelletto Marino are unsatisfactory. Florio gives 'Zucca: 
a gourd; a casting bottle,' but I have been unable to discover 
Mugia. The loss of these words is, to be sure, of no moment. Two 
things illustrative of Jonson's method are sufficiently clear, (i) 
The articles mentioned are not, as they seem at first, merely names 
coined for the occasion. (2) They are a polyglot jumble, intended 
to make proficiency in the science of cosmetics as ridiculous as 
possible. It is worth while to notice, however, that this list of 
drugs is carefully differentiated from the list at 4. 4. 142 f., which 
contains the names of sweetmeats and perfumes. 

4- 4- 3 2 3 Soda di leuante, Or your Feme ashes. Soda-ash is 
still the common trade name of sodium carbonate. In former times 
soda was chiefly obtained from natural deposits and from the 
incineration of various plants growing by the sea-shore. These 
sources have become of little importance since the invention of arti 
ficial soda by Leblanc toward the end of the eighteenth century 
(see Soda in CD.). Florio's definition of soda is: 'a kind of 
Ferne-ashes whereof they make glasses.' Cf. also W. Warde, Tr. 
Alessio's Seer., Pt. i. fol. 78 i: Take an vnce of Soda (which is 
asshes made of grasse, whereof glassemakers do vse to make their 
Cristall).' In Chaucer's Squire's Tale (11. 254 f.) the manufacture 
of glass out of 'fern-asshen' is mentioned as a wonder comparable 
to that of Canacee's ring. 

4. 4. 33 Beniamin di gotta. The Diet. d'Histoire Naturelle, 
Paris, 1843, 2. 509, gives: 'Benjoin. Sa teinture, etendue d'eau, sert 
a la toilette sous le nom de Lait virginal.' See 4. 4. 52. 

4. 4. 38 With a piece of scarlet. Lady Politick Would-be's 
remedies in the Fox are to be 'applied with a right scarlet cloth.' 

ACT iv] Notes i 93 

Scarlet was supposed to be of great efficacy in disease. See Whal- 
ley's note on the Fox, Wks. 3. 234. 

4- 4- 38, 9 makes a Lady of sixty Looke at sixteen. Cunning 
ham thinks this is a reference to the In decimo sexto of line 50. 

4. 4. 39, 40 the water Of the white Hen, of the Lady Estifanias! 
The Lady Estifania seems to have been a dealer in perfumes and 
cosmetics. In Staple of News, Wks. 5. 166, we read: 'Right 
Spanish perfume, the lady Estifania's.' Estefania is the name of a 
Spanish lady in B. & Fl.'s Rule a Wife. 

4. 4. 47 galley-pot. Mistresse Gallipot is the name of a tobac 
conist in Dekker's and Middleton's Roaring Girle. 

4. 4. 50 In decimo sexto. This is a bookbinder's or printer's 
term, 'applied to books, etc., a leaf of which is one-sixteenth of a 
full sheet or signature.' It is equivalent to 'i6mo.' and hence meta 
phorically used to indicate 'a small compass, miniature' (see 
Stanford, p. 312). In Cyn. Rev., Wks. 2. 218, Jonson says: 'my 
braggart in decimo sexto !' Its use is well exemplified in John 
Taylor's Works, sig. La vA : 'when a mans stomache is in Folio, 
and knows not where to haue a dinner in Decimo sexto.' The 
phrase is fairly common in the dramatic literature. See Massinger, 
Unnat. Combat 3. 2; Middleton, Father Hubburd's Tales, Wks. 8. 
64, etc. In the present passage, however, the meaning evidently 
required is 'perfect,' 'spotless,' and no doubt refers to the com 
parative perfection of a sexto decimo, or perhaps to the perfection 
naturally to be expected of any work in miniature. 

4. 4. 52 Virgins milke for the face. Cf. John French, Art Dis 
till, Bk. 5, p. 135 (1651) : 'This salt being set in a cold cellar on a 
marble stone, and dissolved into an oil, is as good as any Lac 
virginis to clear, and smooth the face.' Lac Virginis is spoken of 
twice in the Alchemist, Act 2, but probably in neither case is the 
cosmetic referred to. See Hathaway's edition, p. 293. Nash speaks 
of the cosmetic in Pierce Pennilesse, Wks. 2. 44: 'She should haue 
noynted your face ouer night with Lac virginis' 

4. 4. 55 Cataputia. Catapuce is one of the laxatives that Dame 
Pertelote recommended to Chauntecleer in Chaucer's Nonne Preestes 
Tale, 1. 145. 

4. 4. 63 Doe not you dwindle. The use of dwindle in this sense 
is very rare. NED. thinks it is 'probably a misuse owing to 
two senses of shrink.' It gives only a single example, Alch., Wks. 
4. 163 : 'Did you not hear the coil about the door ? Sub. Yes, and 
I dwindled with it.' Besides the two instances in Jonson I have 
noticed only one other, in Ford, Fancies chaste and noble, Wks. 2. 
291: 'Spa. Hum, how's that? is he there, with a wanion! then do 
I begin to dwindle.' 

194 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

4. 4. 69 Cioppino's. The source of this passage, with the anec 
dote which follows, seems to be taken from Coryat's Crudities (ed. 
1776, 2. 36-7) : 'There is one thing vsed of the Venetian women, 
and some others dwelling in the cities and towns subject to the 
Signiory of Venice, that is not to be obserued (I thinke) amongst 
any other women in Christendome : which is so common in Venice, 
that no woman whatsoeuer goeth without it, either in her house or 
abroad; a thing made of wood, and couered with leather of sundry 
colors, some with white, some redde, some yellow. It is called a 
Chapiney, which they weare vnder their shoes. Many of them are 
curiously painted ; some also I haue scene f airely gilt : so vncomely 
a thing (in my opinion) that it is pitty this foolish custom is not 
cleane banished and exterminated out of the citie. There are many 
of these Chapineys of a great heigth, euen half a yard high, which 
maketh many of their women that are very short, seeme much taller 
then the tallest women we haue in England. Also I haue heard that 
this is obserued amongst them, that by how much the nobler a woman 
is, by so much the higher are her Chapineys. All their Gentle 
women, and most of their wiues and widowes that are of any 
wealth, are assisted and supported eyther by men or women when 
they walke abroad, to the end they may not fall. They are borne 
vp most commonly by the left arme, otherwise they might quickly 
take a fall. For I saw a woman fall a very dangerous fall as she 
was going down the staires of one of the little stony bridges with 
her high Chapineys alone by her selfe : but I did nothing pitty her, 
because shee wore such friuolous and (as I may truely term them) 
ridiculous instruments, which were the occasion of her fall. For 
both I myself e, and many other strangers (as I haue obserued in 
Venice) haue often laughed at them for their vaine Chapineys.' 

4. 4. 71, 2 Spanish pumps Of perfum'd leather. Pumps are 
first mentioned in the sixteenth century (Planche). A reference to 
them occurs in Midsummer Night's Dream, 1593-4, 4. 2. They were 
worn especially by footmen. 

Spanish leather was highly esteemed at this time. Stubbes (Anat. 
of Abuses, Part I, p. 77) says : 'They haue korked shooes, pinsnets, 
pantoffles, and slippers, . . . some of Spanish leather, and some 
of English lether.' Marston (Dutch Courtesan, Wks. 2. 7) speaks 
of a 'Spanish leather jerkin,' and Middleton (Father Hubburd's 
Tales, Wks. 8. 70) of 'a curious pair of boots of King Philip's 
leather,' and a little farther on (Wks. 8. 108) of Spanish leather 
shoes. Fastidious Brisk's boots are made of the same material (Ev. 
Man out, Wks. 2. 147). Cf. also Dekker, Wks. 2. 305. 

Perfumes were much in fashion, and Stubbes' Anatomy has a 
great deal to say on the subject. We hear of perfumed jerkins in 
Marston's Malcontent (Wks. i. 314) and in Cynthia's Revels (Wks. 

ACT iv] Notes 195 

2. 325). Spanish perfume for gloves is spoken of in the latter play 
(p. 328) and in the Alchemist (Wks. 4. 131) 'your Spanish titilla- 
tion in a glove' is declared to be the best perfume. 

4. 4. 77, 8 The Guardo-duennas, such a little old man, 

As this. Minsheu gives the definition : 'Escudero, m. An Esquire, 
a Seruingman that waits on a Ladie or Gentlewoman, in Spaine 
neuer but old men and gray beards.' 

4. 4. 81 flat spred, as an Vmbrella. The umbrella of the seven 
teenth century seems to have been used exclusively to protect the 
face from the sun. Blount, Glossographia, 1670, gives : 'Umbrella 
(Ital. Ombrella), a fashion of round and broad Fans, wherewith 
the Indians (and from them our great ones) preserve themselves 
from the heat of the sun or fire; and hence any little shadow, Fan, 
or other thing wherewith women guard their faces from the sun.' 

It was apparently not in use in England when Coryat published 
his Crudities, which contains the following description (i. 135) : 
'Also many of them doe carry other fine things of a far greater 
price, that will cost at the least a duckat, which they commonly 
call in the Italian tongue vmbrellaes, that is, things that minister 
shadow unto them for shelter against the scorching heate of the 
sunne. These are made of leather something answerable to the 
forme of a little cannopy, & hooped in the inside with diuers little 
wooden hoopes that extend the -umbrella in a pretty large compasse.' 

'As a defense from rain or snow it was not used in western 
Europe till early in the eighteenth century.' CD. 

4. 4. 82 Her hoope. A form of the farthingale (fr. Sp. Ver- 
dugal) was worn in France, Spain, and Italy, and in England as 
early as 1545. It gradually increased in size, and Elizabeth's farth 
ingale was enormous. The aptness of the comparison can be appre 
ciated by reading Coryat's description of the umbrella above. 

4. 4. 87 An Escudero. See note 4. 4. 77, 8. 

4. 4. 97 If no body should loue mee, but my poore husband. 
Cf . Poetaster, Wks. 2. 444 : 'Methinks a body's husband does not so 
well at court; a body's friend, or so but, husband! 'tis like your 
clog to your marmoset,' etc. 

4. 4. 134 your Gentleman-vsher. 'Gentleman-Usher. Origin 
ally a state-officer, attendant upon queens, and other persons of high 
rank, as, in Henry VIII, Griffith is gentleman-usher to Queen Cath 
erine ; afterwards a private affectation of state, assumed by persons 
of distinction, or those who pretended to be so, and particularly 
ladies. He was then only a sort of upper servant, out of livery, 
whose office was to hand his lady to her coach, and to walk before 
her bare-headed, though in later times she leaned upon his arm.' 

196 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

Cf. Dekker, West-ward Hoe, Wks. 2. 324: 'We are furnisht for 
attendants as Ladies are, We have our fooles, and our Vshers.' 

The sources for a study of the gentleman-usher are the present 
play, The Tale of a Tub, and Chapman's Gentleman Usher. In the 
Staple of News the Lady Pecunia is provided with a gentleman-usher. 
The principal duties of this office seem to have consisted in being 
sent on errands, handing the lady to her coach, and preceding her 
on any occasion where ceremony was demanded. In Chapman's 
play Lasso says that the disposition of his house for the reception 
of guests was placed in the hands of this servant (cf. Chapman, 
Wks. i. 263 f.). Innumerable allusions occur in which the require 
ment of going bare-headed is mentioned (see note on 4. 4. 202). 
Another necessary quality was a fine pace, which is alluded to in 
the present character's name (see also note 4. 4. 201). An excellent 
description of the gentleman-usher will be found in Nares' Glos 
sary, quoting from Lenton's Leasures, a book published in 1631, 
and now very rare. 

4. 4. 142 the Dutchesse of Braganza. Braganza is the ruling 
house of Portugal. Dom John, Duke of Braganza, became king of 
Portugal in 1640. 

4. 4. 143 Almoiauna. The Stanford Dictionary gives : 'Almoja- 
bana, Sp. fr. Arab. Al-mojabbana: cheese-and-flour cake. Xeres 
was famed for this dainty, which is named from Arabic jobn = 
"cheese." ' 

4. 4. 147 Marquesse Muja. Apparently a Spanish marquise, occu 
pying a position in society similar to that of Madame Recamier. 

4. 4. 156 A Lady of spirit. With this line and lines 165 f. cf. 
U. 32, Wks. 8. 356: 

To be abroad chanting some bawdy song, 

And laugh, and measure thighs, then squeak, spring, itch, 

Do all the tricks of a salt lady bitch! 

For these with her young company she'll enter, 

Where Pitts, or Wright, or Modet would not venture; 

(Fol. reads 'venter') 

And come by these degrees the style t'inherit 
Of woman of fashion, and a lady of spirit. 

4. 4. 164 Pimlico. See note 3. 3. 170. 

4. 4. 164 daunce the Saraband. The origin of the saraband is 
in doubt, being variously attributed to Spain and to the Moors. It 
is found in Europe at the beginning of the sixteenth century, and its 
immoral character is constantly referred to. Grove (Diet, of Music 
3. 226) quotes from chapter 12, 'Del baile y cantar llamado Zara- 
banda,' of the Tratado contra los Juegos Publicos ('Treatise against 
Public Amusements') of Mariana (1536-1623) : 'Entre las otras 

ACT iv] Notes 


invenciones ha salido estos anos un baile y cantar tan lacivo en las 
palabras, tan feo en las meneos, que basta para pegar fuego aun a 
las personas muy honestas' ('amongst other inventions there has 
appeared during late years a dance and song, so lascivious in its 
words, so ugly in its movements, that it is enough to inflame even 
very modest people'). 'This reputation was not confined to Spain, 
for Marini in his poem "L'Adone" (1623) says: 

Chiama questo suo gioco empio e profano 
Saravanda, e Ciaccona, il nuova Ispano. 

Padre Mariana, who believed in its Spanish origin, says that its 
invention was one of the disgraces of the nation, and other authors 
attribute its invention directly to the devil. The dance was attacked 
by Cervantes and Guevara, and defended by Lope de Vega, but it 
seems to have been so bad that at the end of the reign of Philip II. 
it was for a time suppressed. It was soon, however, revived in a 
purer form and was introduced at the French court in 1588' (Grove 
3. 226-7). 

In England the saraband was soon transformed into an ordinary 
country-dance. Two examples are to be found in the first edition 
of Playford's Dancing Master, and Sir John Hawkms (Hist, of the 
Science and Practice of Music, 1776) speaks of it several times. 
'Within the memory of persons now living,' he says, ' a Saraband 
danced by a Moor was constantly a part of the entertainment at a 
puppet-show' (4. 388). In another place (2. 135), in speaking 
of the use of castanets at a puppet-show, he says: "That particular 
dance called the Saraband is supposed to require as a thing of 
necessity, the music, if it may be called so, of this artless instrument.' 

In the Staple of News, Wks. 5. 256, Jonson speaks of 'a light 
air ! the bawdy Saraband !' 

4. 4. 165 Heare, and talke bawdy; laugh as loud, as a larum. 
Jonson satirizes these vices again in U. 67 (see note 4. 4. 156) and 
Epigrams 48 and 115. Dekker (Guls Horne-booke, Non-dram. Wks. 
2. 238) advises the young gallant to 'discourse as lowd as you can, 
no matter to what purpose, . . . and laugh in fashion, . . . 
you shall be much obserued.' 

4. 4. 172 Shee must not lose a looke on stuff es, or cloth. It 
being the fashion to 'swim in choice of silks and tissues,' plain 
woolen cloth was despised. 

4. 4. 187 Blesse vs from him! Preserve us. A precaution 
against any evil that might result from pronouncing the devil's 
name. Cf. Knight of the Burning Pestle 2. i : Sure the devil (God 
bless us!) is in this springald!' and Wilson, The Cheats, Prologue: 

No little pug nor devil, bless us alll 

198 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

4. 4. 191, 2 What things they are? That nature should be at 

Euer to make 'hem! Cf. Ev. Man in, Wks. i. 119: 'O manners 
that this age should bring forth such creatures ! that nature should 
be at leisure to make them !' 

4. 4. 197 Hee makes a wicked leg. Gifford thinks that wicked 
here means 'awkward or clownish.' It seems rather to mean 
'roguish,' a common colloquial use. 

4. 4. 201 A setled discreet pase. Cf. 3. 5. 22; 2. 7. 33; and 
Dekker, Guls Horne-booke, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 238: 'Walke vp and 
downe by the rest as scornfully and as carelesly as a Gentleman- 

4. 4. 202 a barren head, Sir. Cf. 2. 3. 36, 7 and 4. 2. 12. Here 
again we have a punning allusion to the uncovered head of the 
gentleman-usher. 'It was a piece of state, that the servants of the 
nobility, particularly the gentleman-usher, should attend bare-headed.' 
Nares, Gloss. For numerous passages illustrating the practice both 
in regard to the gentleman-usher and to the coachman, see the quota 
tions in Nares, and Ford, Lover's Melancholy, Wks. i. 19 ; Chapman, 
Gentleman-Usher, Wks. i. 263; and the following passage, ibid. 
i. 273 : 

Vin. I thanke you sir. 

Nay pray be couerd; O I crie you mercie, 
You must be bare. 

Bos. Euer to you my Lord. 

Vin. Nay, not to me sir, 
But to the faire right of your worshipfull place. 

A passage from Lenton (see note 4. 4. 134) may also be quoted: 
'He is forced to stand bare, which would urge him to impatience, 
but for the hope of being covered, or rather the delight hee takes in 
shewing his new-crisp't hayre, which his barber hath caused to 
stand like a print hedge, in equal proportion.' 

The dramatists ridiculed it by insisting that the coachman should 
be not only bare-headed, but bald. Cf. 2. 3. 36 and Massinger, 
City Madam, Wks., p. 331 : 'Thou shalt have thy proper and bald- 
headed coachman.' Jonson often refers to this custom. Cf. Staple 
of News, Wks. 5. 232 : 

Such as are bald and barren beyond hope, 
Are to be separated and set by 
For ushers to old countesses: and coachmen 
To mount their boxes reverently, etc. 

New Inn, Wks. 5. 374 : 

lor. Where's thy hat? . . . 

Ear. The wind blew't off at Highgate, and my lady 
Would not endure me light to take it up; 
But made me drive bareheaded in the rain. 

Jor. That she might be mistaken for a countess? 

ACT iv] Notes 


Cf. also Mag. La., Wks. 6. 36, and Tale Tub, Wks. 6. 217 and 222. 

4. 4. 204 his Valley is beneath the waste. 'Waist' and 'waste- 
were both spelled waste or wast. Here, of course, is a pun on the 
two meanings. 

4. 4. 206 Dulnesse vpon you! Could not you hit this? Cf. 
Bart. Fair, Wks. 4. 358: 'Now dullness upon me, that I had not 
that before him.' 

4. 4. 209 the French sticke. Walking-sticks of various sorts are 
mentioned during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. 'In Chas. 
II.'s time the French walking-stick, with a ribbon and tassels to 
hold it when passed over the wrist, was fashionable, and continued 
so to the reign of George II.' (Planche). 

4. 4. 215, 6 report the working, Of any Ladies physicke. In 
Lenton's Leasures (see note 4. 4. 134) we find: 'His greatest vexa 
tion is going upon sleevelesse arrands, to know whether some lady 
slept well last night, or how her physick work'd i' th' morning, 
things that savour not well with him; the reason that ofttimes he 
goes but to the next taverne, and then very discreetly brings her 
home a tale of a tubbe.' 

Cf . also B. & Fl., Fair Maid of the Inn 2. 2 : 'Host. And have 
you been in England? . . . But they say ladies there take 
physic for fashion.' 

Dekker, Guls Horne-bookc, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 255, speaks of 
'a country gentleman that brings his wife vp to learne the fashion, 
see the Tombs at Westminster, the Lyons in the Tower, or to take 
physicke.' In the 1812 reprint the editor observes that in Jonson's 
time 'fanciful or artful wives would often persuade their husbands 
to take them up to town for the advantage of physick, when the 
principal object was dissipation.' 

4. 4. 219 Corne-cutter. This vulgar suggestion renders hopeless 
Pug's pretensions to gentility. Corncutters carried on a regular 
trade (see Bart. Fair 2. i.), and were held in the greatest contempt, 
as we learn from Nash {Four Letters Confuted, Wks. 2. 211). 

4. 4. 232 The Moone. I. e., see that the moon and zodiacal sign 
are propitious. 

4. 4. 235 Get their natiuities cast! Astrology was a favorite 
subject of satire. Cf. Massinger, City Madam 2. 2; B. & Fl., Rollo 
Duke of Normandy 4. 2, etc. 

4. 4. 31, 2 his valour has At the tall board bin question'd. Tall 
board is, I think, the same as table-board, a gaming-table. In Dyce's 
edition of Webster's Devil's Law Case (Wks. 2. 38) we read: 
'shaking your elbow at the table-board.' Dyce says in a note that 
the old folio reads Taule-board. Tables is derived from Lat. Tabu- 
larum lususy Fr. Tables. The derivation, table) tavl> tauly tall, 
presents no etymological difficulties. A note from Professor Joseph 
Wright of Oxford confirms me in my theory. 

200 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx iv 

The passage seems to mean that Merecraft was accused of cheat 
ing, and, his valor not rising to the occasion, his reputation for 
honesty was left somewhat in doubt. 

4. 6. 38-41 intitle Your vertue, to the power, vpon a life 
. . . Euen to forfeit. Wittipol is 'wooing in language of the 
pleas and bench.' Cf. 4. 7. 62. 

4. 6. 42 We haue another leg-strain'd, for this Dottrel. See 
variants, and note 2. 2. 49, 50. 

4. 6. 49 A Phrentick. See note 5. 8. 91-2. 

4- 7- 37-4 o - See variants. Gifford silently follows Whalley's 
changes, which are utterly unwarrantable. Cunningham points out 
the wrong division in 37, 8. The scansion is thus indicated by 
Wilke (Metrische Untersuchungen, p. 3) : 

Of a/most wor/thy gen/tleman. /Would one 
Of worth /had spoke /it: whence /it comes, /it is 
Rather/a shame/ to me./*' then/a praise. 

The missing syllable in the third verse is compensated for by the 
pause after the comma. This is quite in accordance with Jonson's 
custom (see Wilke, p. i f.). 

4. 7. 45 Publication. See 3. 3. 137. 

4. 7. 54 I sou't him. See variants. Gifford says that he can 
make nothing of sou't but sought and sous'd, and that he prefers the 
latter. Dyce {Remarks) confidently asserts that the word is the 
same as shue, 'to frighten away poultry,' and Cunningham accepts 
this without question. There seems, however, to be no confirmation 
for the theory that the preterit was ever spelt sou't. Wright's 
Dialect Dictionary gives : 'Sough. 19. to strike ; to beat severely,' 
but the pronunciation here seems usually to be souff. Professor 
Wright assures me that sous'd is the correct reading, and that the 
others are 'mere stupid guesses.' 

4. 7. 62 in possibility. A legal phrase used of contingent inter 
ests. See note 4. 6. 38, 9. 

4. 7. 65 Duke o' Shore-ditch. 'A mock title of honour, con 
ferred on the most successful of the London archers, of which this 
account is given : 

When Henry VIII became king, he gave a prize at Windsor to 
those who should excel at this exercise, (archery) when Barlo, one 
of his guards, an inhabitant of Shoreditch, acquired such honor as an 
archer, that the king created him duke of Shoreditch, on the spot. 
This title, together with that of marquis of Islington, earl of Pan- 
cridge, etc., was taken from these villages, in the neighborhood of 
Finsbury fields, and continued so late as 1683. Ellis's History of 
Shoreditch, p. 170. 

ACT v] Notes 


The latest account is this : In 1682 there was a most magnificent 
entertainment given by the Finsbury archers, when they bestowed 
the title of duke of Shoreditch, etc., upon the most deserving. The 
king was present. Ibid. 173.' Nares, Gloss. 

Entick (Survey 2. 65) gives an interesting account of a match 
which took place in 1583. The Duke of Shoreditch was accom 
panied on this occasion by the 'marquises of Barlow, Clerkenwell, 
Islington, Hoxton, and Shaklewcll, the earl of Pancras, etc. These, 
to the number of 3000, assembled at the place appointed, sumptuously 
apparelled, and 942 of them had gold chains about their necks. 
They marched from merchant-taylors-hall, preceded by whifflers and 
bellmen, that made up the number 4000, besides pages and footmen; 
performing several exercises and evolutions in Moorfields, and at 
last shot at the target for glory in Smith field' 

4. 7. 69 Ha'. See variants. The original seems to me the more 
characteristic reading. 

4. 7. 84 after-game. Jonson uses the expression again in the 
New Inn, IVks. 5. 402: 

And play no after-games of love hereafter. 


5. i. 28 Tyborne. This celebrated gallows stood, it is believed, 
on the site of Connaught Place. It derived the name from a brook 
in the neighborhood (see Minsheu, Stow, etc.). 

5. i. 29 My L. Majors Banqueting-house. This was in Strat 
ford Place, Oxford Street. It was 'erected for the Mayor and Cor 
poration to dine in after their periodical visits to the Bayswater and 
Paddington Conduits, and the Conduit-head adjacent to the Ban- 
queting-House, which supplied the city with water. It was taken 
down in 1737, and the cisterns arched over at the same time.' Wh-C. 

Stow (ed. 1633, pp. 475-6) speaks of 'many faire Summer houses' 
in the London suburbs, built 'not so much for use and profit, as for 
shew and pleasure.' 

The spelling Major seems to be a Latin form. Mr. Charles Jack 
son (N. & Q. 4. 7. 176) mentions it as frequently used by the mayors 
of Doncaster in former days. Cf. also Glapthorne (Wks. i. 231) 
and Ev. Man in (Folio 1616, 5. 5. 41). 

5. i. 41 my tooth-picks. See note 4. 2. 26. 

5. i. 47 Saint Giles'es. 'Now, without the postern of Cripples- 
gate, first is the parish church of Saint Giles, a very fair and large 
church, lately repaired, after that the same was burnt in the year 
1545.' Stow, Survey, ed. Thorns, p. 112. 

5. i. 48 A kind of Irish penance! There is the same allusion 
to the rug gowns of the wild Irish, in the Night Walker of Fletcher : 

2O2 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

We have divided the sexton's household stuff 

Among us; one has the rug, and he's turn'd Irish.' G. 

Cf. also Holinshed, Chron. (quoted CD.) : 'As they distill the 
best aqua-vitas, so they spin the choicest rug in Ireland.' Fynes 
Moryson (Itinerary, fol. 1617, p. 160) says that the Irish merchants 
were forbidden to export their wool, in order that the peasants 
might 'be nourished by working it into cloth, namely, Rugs . . . 
& mantles generally worn by men and women, and exported in great 

Jonson mentions rug as an article of apparel several times. In 
Alch., Wks. 4. 14, it is spoken of as the dress of a poor man and 
ibid. 4. 83 as that of an astrologer. In Ev. Man out (Wks. 2. no) 
a similar reference is made, and here Gifford explains that rug was 
'the usual dress of mathematicians, astrologers, &c., when engaged 
in their sublime speculations.' Marston also speaks of rug gowns 
as the symbol of a strict life (What You Will, Wks. 2. 395) : 

Lamp-oil, watch -candles, rug-gowns, and small juice, 
Thin commons, four o'clock rising, I renounce you all. 

5. 2. i ff. put me To yoaking foxes, etc. Several at least of the 
following employments are derived from proverbial expressions 
familiar at the time. Jonson speaks of 'milking he-goats' in Tim 
ber, ed. Schelling, p. 34, which the editor explains as 'a proverbial 
expression for a fruitless task.' The occupation of lines 5-6 is adapted 
from a popular proverb given by Cotgrave : 'J'aymeroy autant tirer 
vn pet d'un Asne mort, que. I would as soone vndertake to get a 
fart of a dead man, as &c.' Under Asne he explains the same prov 
erb as meaning 'to worke impossibilities.' This explains the passage 
in Staple of News 3. i., Wks. 5. 226. The proverb is quoted again 
in Eastward Ho, Marston, Wks. 3. 90, and in Wm. Lilly's Observa 
tions,' Hist., pp. 269-70. 'Making ropes of sand' was Iniquity's 
occupation in i. i. 119. This familiar proverb first appears in 
Aristides 2. 309 : fx \j/dfj.fju)v axoivlov irMicciv. In the New Inn, Wks. 
5. 394, Lovel says : 'I will go catch the wind first in a sieve.' 
Whalley says that the occupation of 'keeping fleas within a circle' 
is taken from Socrates' employment in the Clouds of Aristophanes 
(11. 144-5). Gifford, however, ridicules the notion. Jonson refers 
to the passage in the Clouds in Timber (ed. Schelling, 82. 33), where 
he thinks it would have made the Greeks merry to see Socrates 
'measure how many foot a flea could skip geometrically.' But here 
again we seem to have a proverbial expression. It occurs in the 
morality-play of Nature, 642. II (quoted by Cushman, p. 116) : 

I had leiver keep as many flese, 
Or wyld hares in an opyn lese, 
As undertake that. 

ACT v] Notes 203 

5. 2. 32. Scan : 

And three/pence. ~/Give me/an an/swer. Sir. 

Thos. Keightley, N. & Q. 4. 2. 603, suggests : 

And your threepence, etc. 

5. 2. 35 Your best songs Thorn, o' Bet'lem. 'A song entitled 
"Mad Tom" is to be found in Percy's Reliques; Ballad Soc. Roxb. 
Ball., 2. p. 259; and Chappell's Old Pop. Mus. The exact date of 
the poem is not known.' H. R. D. Anders, Shakespeare's Books, 
P- 24-5. 

Bethlehem Royal Hospital was originally founded 'to have been 
a priory of canons,' but was converted to a hospital for lunatics in 
1547. In Jonson's time it was one of the regular sights of London, 
and is so referred to in Dekker's Northward Hoe, Wks. 3. 56 f. ; 
Sil. Worn., Wks. 3. 421 ; Alch., Wks. 4. 132. 

5. 3. 6 little Darrels tricks. John Barrel (fl. 1562-1602) was 
born, it is believed, at Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, about 1562. He 
graduated at Cambridge, studied law, and then became a preacher at 
Mansfield. He began to figure as an exorcist in 1586, when he 
pretended to cast out an evil spirit from Catherine Wright of 
Ridgway Lane, Derbyshire. In 1596 he exorcised Thomas Darling, 
a boy of fourteen, of Burton-on-Trent, for bewitching whom Alice 
Goodrich was tried and convicted at Derby. A history of the case 
was written by Jesse Bee of Burton (Harsnet, Discovery, p. 2). 
The boy Darling went to Merton College, and in 1603 was sentenced 
by the Star-chamber to be whipped, and to lose his ears for libelling 
the vice-chancellor of Oxford. In March, 1596-7, Darrel was sent 
for to Clayworth Hall, Shakerly, in Leigh parish, Lancashire, where 
he exorcised seven persons of the household of Mr. Nicholas Starkie, 
who accused one Edmund Hartley of bewitching them, and suc 
ceeded in getting the latter condemned and executed in 1597. In 
November, 1597, Darrel was invited to Nottingham to dispossess 
William Somers, an apprentice, and shortly after his arrival was 
appointed preacher of St. Mary's in that town, and his fame drew 
crowded congregations to listen to his tales of devils and possession. 
Darrel's operations having been reported to the Archbishop of 
York, a commission of inquiry was issued (March 1597-8)! and he 
was prohibited from preaching. Subsequently the case was investi 
gated by Bancroft, bishop of London, and S. Harsnet, his chaplain, 
when Somers, Catherine Wright, and Mary Cooper confessed that 
they had been instructed in their simulations by Darrel. He was 
brought before the commissioners and examined at Lambeth on 
26 May 1599, was pronounced an impostor, degraded from the 
ministry and committed to the Gatehouse. He remained in prison 

204 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

for at least a year, but it is not known what became of him. 
(Abridged from DNB.) 
Jonson refers to Barrel again in U. 67, Wks. 8. 422 : 

This age will lend no faith to Barrel's deed. 

5. 3. 27 That could, pitty her selfe. See variants. 

5. 3. 28 in Potentia. Jonson uses the phrase again in the 
Alchemist, Wks, 4. 64: 'The egg's ... a chicken in potentia.' 
It is a late Latin phrase. See Gloss. 

5. 4. 17 my proiect o' the forkes. Forks were just being intro 
duced into England at this time, and were a common subject of 
satire. The first mention of a fork recorded in the NED. is : '1463 
Bury Wills (Camden) 40, I beqwethe to Davn John Kertelynge my 
silvir forke for grene gyngour.' 

Cf. Dekker, Guls Horne-booke, Non-dram. Wks. 2. 211: 'Oh 
golden world, the suspicious Venecian carued not his meate with a 
siluer pitch-forke.' B. & Fl., Queen of Corinth 4. I (quoted by 
Gifford) : 

It doth express th' enamoured courtier, 
As full as your fork-carving traveler. 

Fox, Wks. 3. 261 : 

Then must you learn the use 
And handling of your silver fork at meals, 
The metal of your glass; (these are main matters 
With your Italian;) 

Coryat has much to say on the subject (Crudities I. 106) : 'I 
obserued a custome in all those Italian Cities and Townes through 
the which I passed, that is not vsed in any other country that I 
saw in my trauels, neither doe I thinke that any other nation of 
Christendome doth vse it, but only Italy. The Italian and also 
most strangers that are commorant in Italy, doe alwaies in their 
meales vse a little forke when they cut their meate. For while with 
their knife which they hold in one hand they cut the meate out of 
the dish, they fasten their forke which they hold in their other hand 
vpon the same dish, so that whatsoeuer he be that sitting in the 
company of any others at meale, should vnadvisedly touch the dish 
of meate with his fingers from which all at the table doe cut, he 
will giue occasion of offence vnto the company, as hauing trans 
gressed the lawes of good manners. . . . This forme of feeding 
I vnderstand is generally vsed in all places of Italy, their forkes 
being for the most part made of yron or steele, and some of siluer, 
but those are vsed only by Gentlemen.' Coryat carried this custom 
home with him to England, for which a friend dubbed him furcifer. 

ACT v] Notes 


This passage is doubtless the source of Jonson's lines. Compare 
the last sentence of the quotation with lines 30, 31 of this scene. 

5. 4. 23, 4 on my priuate, By cause. See variants. There is no 
necessity for change. Cf. 1616 Sir R. Dudley in Fortesc. Papers 17 : 
'Nor am I so vaine . . . bycause I am not worth so much.' 
The same form occurs in Sad Shepherd (Fol. 1631-40, p. 143) : 

But, heare yee Douce, bycause, yee may meet mee. 

Gabriel Harvey uses both the forms by cause and bycause. Prose 
Wks. i. 101 ; 102; et frequenter. 

5. 4. 34 at mine owne ap-perill. The word is of rare occurrence. 
Gifford quotes Timon of Athens I. 2: 'Let me stay at thine apperil, 
Timon ;' and refers to Mag. La., Wks. 6. 109 : 'Faith, I will bail him 
at mine own apperil.' It occurs again in Tale Tub, Wks. 6. 148: 
'As you will answer it at your apperil.' 

5. 5. 10, ii I will leaue you To your God fathers in Law. 
'This seems to have been a standing joke for a jury. It is used 
by Shakespeare and by writers prior to him. Thus Bulleyn, speak 
ing of a knavish ostler, says, "I did see him ones aske blessyng to 
xii godfathers at ones." Dialogue, 1564.' G. 

The passage from Shakespeare is Merck, of Ven. 4. i. 398: 

In christening, shalt thou have two godfathers: 
Had I been judge, thou should'st have had ten more, 
To bring thee to the gallows, not the font. 

Cf. also Muse's Looking Glass, O. PL 9. 214: 'Boets! I had rather 
zee him remitted to the jail, and have his twelve godvathers, good 
men and true contemn him to the gallows.' 
5- 5- 5. 5 1 A Boy o* thirteene yeere old made him an Asse 
But t'toher day. Whalley believed this to be an allusion to the 
'boy of Bilson,' but, as Gifford points out, this case did not occur 
until 1620, four years after the production of the present play. 
Gifford believes Thomas Harrison, the 'boy of Norwich,' to be 
alluded to. A short account of his case is given in Hutchinson's 
Impostures Detected, pp. 262 f. The affair took place in 1603 or 
1604, and it was thought necessary to 'require the Parents of the 
said Child, that they suffer not any to repair to their House to visit 
him, save such as are in Authority and other Persons of special 
Regard, and known Discretion.' Hutchinson says that Harrison was 
twelve years old. It is quite possible, though not probable, that 
Jonson is referring again to the Boy of Burton, who was only two 
years older. See note 5. 3. 6. 

5- 5- 58, 59 You had some straine 'Boue E-la? Cf. 1593 Nash, 
Christ's Tears, Wks. 4. 188: 'You must straine your wits an Ela 
aboue theyrs.' Cf. also Nash, Wks. 5. 98 and 253; Lyly, Euphues, 
Aij ; and Gloss. 

206 The Diuell is an Asse [ACT v 

5. 6. i your garnish. 'This word garnish has been made familiar 
to all time by the writings of John Howard. "A cruel custom," 
says he, "obtains in most of our gaols, which is that of the prisoners 
demanding of a newcomer garnish, footing, or (as it is called in 
some London gaols) chummage. Pay or strip are the fatal words. 
I say fatal, for they are so to some, who, having no money, are 
obliged to give up part of their scanty apparel; and if they have 
no bedding or straw to sleep on, contract diseases which I have 
known to prove mortal." ' C. 

Cf . Dekker, // this be not a good Play, Wks. 3. 324 : 

Tis a strong charme gainst all the noisome smels 
Of Counters, laylors, garnishes, and such hels. 

and Greene, Upstart Courtier, Dija: 'Let a poore man be arrested 
. . . he shal be almost at an angels charge, what with garnish, 
crossing and wiping out of the book . . . extortions . . . 
not allowed by any statute.' 

The money here seems to have been intended for the jailer, rather 
than for Pug's fellow-prisoners. The custom was abolished by 4 
George IV. c. 43, 12. 

5. 6. 10 I thinke Time be drunke, and sleepes. Cf. i. 4. 31. 
For the metaphor cf . New Inn, Wks. 5. 393 : 

If I but knew what drink the time now loved. 

and Staple of News, Wks. 5. 162 : 

Now sleep, and rest; 
Would thou couldst make the time to do so too. 

5. 6. 18 confute. 'A pure Latinism. Confutare is properly to 
pour cold water in a pot, to prevent it from boiling over ; and hence 
metaphorically, the signification of confuting, reproving, or con- 
trouling.' W. 

For the present use cf. T. Adams in Spurgeon, Treas. Dav., 1614, 
Ps. Ixxx. 20: 'Goliath . . . shall be confuted with a pebble.' 
R. Coke, Justice Vind. (1660) 15: 'to be confuted with clubs and 

5. 6. 21 the Session. The general or quarter sessions were held 
regularly four times a year on certain days prescribed by the statutes. 
The length of time for holding the sessions was fixed at three days, 
if necessity required it, but the rule was not strictly adhered to. 
See Beard, The Office of the Justice of the Peace in England, pp. 
158 f. 

5. 6. 23 In a cart, to be hang'd. 'Theft and robbery in their 
coarsest form were for many centuries capital crimes. . . .The 
question when theft was first made a capital crime is obscure, but 

ACT v] Notes 


it is certain that at every period some thefts were punished with 
death, and that by Edward I.'s time, at least, the distinction between 
grand and petty larceny, which lasted till 1827, was fully established.' 
Stephen, Hist. Crim. Law 3. 128 f. 

5. 6. 24 The charriot of Triumph, which most of them are. 
The procession from Newgate by Holborn and Tyburn road was in 
truth often a 'triumphall egression,' and a popular criminal like 
Jack Sheppard or Jonathan Wild frequently had a large attendance. 
Cf. Shirley, Wedding 4. 3, Wks., ed. Gifford, i. 425: 'Now I'm in 
the cart, riding up Holborn in a two-wheeled chariot, with a guard 
of Halberdiers. There goes a proper fellow, says one ; good people 
pray for me : now I am at the three wooden stilts,' etc. 

5. 6. 48 a body intire. Jonson uses the word in its strict ety 
mological sense. 

5. 6. 54 cheated on. Dyce (Remarks) points out that this phrase 
is used in Mrs. Centlivre's Wonder, Act 2. Sc. I. Jonson uses it 
again in Mercury vindicated: 'and cheat upon your under-officers ;' 
and Marston in What You Will, Wks. 2. 387. 

5. 6. 64 Prouinciall o' the Cheaters! Provincial is a term bor 
rowed from the church. See Gloss. Of the cheaters Dekker gives 
an interesting account in the Bel-man of London, Non-dram. Wks. 
3. 116 f . : 'Of all which Lawes, the Highest in place, and the Highest 
in perdition is the Cheating Law or the Art of winning money by 
false dyce : Those that practise this studie call themselues Cheators, 
/the dyce Cheaters, and the money which they purchase [see note 
3. 4. 31, 2.] Cheates [see i. 7. 4 and Gloss.] : borrowing the tearme 
from our common Lawyers, with whome all such casuals as fall to 
the Lord at the holding of his Leetes, as Waifes, Strayes, & such 
like, are sayd to be Escheated to the Lords vse and are called 

5. 6. 64 Bawd-ledger. Jonson speaks of a similar official in 
Every Man out, Wks. 2. 132 : 'He's a leiger at Horn's ordinary 
(cant name for a bawdy-house) yonder.' See Gloss. 

5. 6. 68 to sindge your nayles off. In the fool's song in 
Twelfth Night we have the exclamation to the devil: 'paire thy 
nayles dad' (Furness's ed., p. 273). The editor quotes Malone: 
'The Devil was supposed from choice to keep his nails unpared, and 
therefore to pare them was an affront. So, in Camden's Remaines, 
1615 : "I will follow mine owne minde, and mine old trade ; who 
shall let me? the divel's nailes are unparde." ' 

Compare also Henry V. 4. 4. 76: 'Bardolph and Nym had ten 
times more valor than this roaring devil i' the old play, that every 
one may pare his nails with a wooden dagger,' 

5. 6. 76 The Diuell was wont to carry away the euill. Eck- 
hardt, p. 100, points out that Jonson's etymology of the word Vice, 

208 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

which has been a matter of dispute, was the generally accepted one, 
that is, from vice evil. 

5. 7. i Justice Hall. 'The name of the Sessions-house in the Old 
Bailey.' G. Strype, B. 3, p. 281 says that it was 'a fair and stately 
building, very commodious for that affair.' 'It standeth backwards, 
so that it hath no front towards the street, only the gateway leading 
into the yard before the House, which is spacious. It cost above 
6000 the building. And in this place the Lord Mayor, Recorder, 
the Aldermen and Justices of the Peace for the County of Middle 
sex do sit, and keep his Majesty's Sessions of Oyer and Terminer.' 
It was destroyed in the Gordon Riots of 1780. Wh-C. 

5. 7. 9 This strange! See variants. The change seriously 
injures the metre, and the original reading should be preserved. 
Such absorptions (this for this is or this's) are not uncommon. 
Cf. Macbeth 3. 4. 17, ed. Furness, p. 165 : 'yet he's good' for 'yet 
he is as good.' 

5. 8. 2 They had giu'n him potions. Jonson perhaps had in 
mind the trial of Anne Turner and her accomplices in the Overbury 
Case of the previous year. See Introduction, p. Ixxii. For a dis 
cussion of love-philtres see Burton, Anat. of Mel. (ed. Bullen), 

3- 145 f. 

5. 8. 33 with a Wanion. This word is found only in the phrases 
'with a wanion,' 'in a wanion,' and 'wanions on you.' It is a kind 
of petty imprecation, and occurs rather frequently in the dramatists, 
but its precise signification and etymology are still in doubt. Bos- 
well, Malone, 21. 61, proposed a derivation from winnowing, 'a 
beating;' Nares from warning, Saxon, 'detriment;' Dyce (Ford's 
Wks. 2. 291) from wan (yaande, Dutch, 'a rod or wand'), 'of which 
wannie and wannion are familiar diminutives.' The CD. makes it a 
later form of ME. waniand, 'a waning,' spec, of the moon, regarded 
as implying ill luck. 

5. 8. 34 If his homes be forth, the Diuells companion! The 
jest is too obvious not to be a common one. Thus in Eastward Ho 
Slitgut, who is impersonating the cuckold at Horn-fair, says : 
' 'Slight ! I think the devil be abroad, in likeness of a storm, to rob 
me of my horns !' Marston's Wks. 3. 72. Cf. also Staple of Nezvs, 
Wks. 5. 186: 'And why would you so fain see the devil? would I 
say. Because he has horns, wife, and may be a cuckold as well as 
a devil.' 

5. 8. 35 How he foames! For the stock indications of witch 
craft see Introduction, p. xlix. 

5. 8. 40 The Cockscomb, and the Couerlet. Wittipol is evi 
dently selecting an appropriate name for Fitzdottrel's buffoonery 
after the manner of the puppet-shows. It is quite possible that 
some actual motion of the day was styled 'the Coxcomb and the 

ACT v] Notes 


5. 8. 50 shee puts in a pinne. Pricking with pins and needles 
was one of the devil's regular ways of tormenting bewitched persons. 
They were often supposed to vomit these articles. So when Voltore 
feigns possession, Volpone cries out: 'See! He vomits crooked 
pins' (The Fox, Wks. 3. 312). 

5. 8. 61 the Kings Constable. 'From the earliest times to our 
own days, there were two bodies of police in England, namely, the 
parish and high constables, and the watchmen in cities and boroughs. 
Nothing could exceed their inefficiency in the i;th century. Of the 
constables, Dalton (in the reign of James I.) observes that they 
"are often absent from their houses, being for the most part hus 
bandmen." The charge of Dogberry shows probably with no great 
caricature what sort of watchmen Shakespeare was familiar with. 
As late as 1796, Colquhoun observes that the watchmen "were aged 
and often superannuated men.'" Sir J. Stephen, Hist. Crim. Law 
i. 194 f. 

5. 8. 71 The taking of Tabacco, with which the Diuell 

Is so delighted. This was an old joke of the time. In Middle- 
ton's Black Book, Wks. 8. 42 f. the devil makes his will, a part of 
which reads as follows : 'But turning my legacy to you-ward, 
Barnaby Burning-glass, arch-tobacco-taker of England, in ordinaries, 
upon stages both common and private, and lastly, in the lodging of 
your drab and mistress ; I am not a little proud, I can tell you, 
Barnaby, that you dance after my pipe so long, and for all counter 
blasts and tobacco-Nashes (which some call railers), you are not 
blown away, nor your fiery thirst quenched with the small penny-ale 
of their contradictions, but still suck that dug of damnation with 
a long nipple, still burning that rare Phoenix of Phlegethon, tobacco, 
that from her ashes, burned and knocked out, may arise another 

Middleton here refers to Nash's Pierce Pennilesse and King James 
I.'s Counterblast to Tobacco. The former in his supplication to the 
devil says : 'It is suspected you have been a great tobacco-taker in 
your youth.' King James describes it as 'a custom loathsome to the 
eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, dangerous to the 
lungs, and in the black stinking fume thereof, nearest resembling the 
horrid Stygian smoke of the pit that is bottomless.' 

The dramatists seem never to grow tired of this joking allusion 
to the devil and his pipe of tobacco. Cf. Dekker, // this be not a 
good Play, Wks. 3. 293: 'I think the Diuell is sucking Tabaccho, 
heeres such a Mist.' Ibid. 327: 'Are there gentleman diuels too? 
this is one of those, who studies the black Art, thats to say, drinkes 
Tobacco.' Massinger, Guardian, Wks., p. 344: 

2io The Dluell is an Asse [ACT v 

You shall fry first 

For a rotten piece of touchwood, and give fire 
To the great fiend's nostrils, when he smokes tobacco! 

Dekker (Non-dram. Wks. 2. 89) speaks of 'that great Tobac 
conist the Prince of Smoake & darknes, Don Pluto.' 

The art of taking or drinking tobacco was much cultivated and 
had its regular professors. The whiff, the ring, etc., are often 
spoken of. For the general subject see Dekker, Guls Horne-booke; 
Barnaby Riche, Honestie of this Age, 1613 ; Harrison, Chronology, 
1573; Every Man in, etc. An excellent description of a tobacconist's 
shop is given in Alchemist, Wks. 4. 37. For a historical account 
of its introduction see Wheatley, Ev. Man in, p. xlvii. 

Jonson's form tobacco is the same as the Italian and Portuguese. 
See Alden, Bart. Fair, p. 169. 

5. 8. 74, 5 yellow, etc. 

That's Starch! the Diuell's Idoll of that colour. For the gen 
eral subject of yellow starch see note i. i. 112, 3. Compare also 
Stubbes, Anat. of Abuses, p. 52: 'The deuil, as he in the fulness of 
his malice, first inuented these great ruffes, so hath hee now found 
out also two great stayes to beare vp and maintaine this his king- 
dome of great ruffes. . . . The one arch or piller whereby his 
kingdome of great ruffes is vnderpropped, is a certaine kinde of 
liquide matter which they call starch, wherein the devil hath willed 
them to wash and diue his ruffes wel.' 

'Starch hound' and 'Tobacco spawling (spitting)' are the names 
of two devils in Dekker's // this be not a good Play, Wks. 3. 270. 
Jonson speaks of 'that idol starch' again in the Alchemist, Wks. 
4. 92. 

5. 8. 78 He is the Master of Players. An evident allusion to 
the Puritan attacks on the stage. This was the period of the 
renewed literary contest. George Wither had lately published his 
Abuses stript and whipt, 1613. For the whole subject see Thompson, 
E. N. S., The Controversy between the Puritans and the Stage, New 
York, 1903. 

5. 8. 81 Figgum. 'In some of our old dictionaries, fid is 
explained to caulk with oakum: figgum, or fig'em, may therefore 
be a vulgar derivative from this term, and signify the lighted flax 
or tow with which jugglers stuff their mouths when they prepare 
to amuse the rustics by breathing out smoke and flames : 

a nut-shell 
With tow, and touch-wood in it, to spite fire (5. 3. 4, 5).' 


5. 8. 86, 7 to such a foole, He makes himselfe. For the omis 
sion of the relative adverb cf. i. 3. 34, 35. 

ACT v] Notes 


5. 8. 89 To come to dinner, in mee the sinner. The conception 
of this couplet and the lines which Fitzdottrel speaks below was later 
elaborated in Cocklorrel's song in the Gipsies Metamorphosed. 
Pluto in Dekker's // this be not a good Play, Wks. 3. 268, says that 
every devil should have 'a brace of whores to his breakfast.' Such 
ideas seem to be descended from the mediaeval allegories of men 
like Raoul de Houdanc, Ruteboeuf, etc. 

5. 8. 91, 2 Are you phrenticke, Sir, Or what graue dotage 
moues you. 'Dotage, fatuity, or folly, is a common name to all the 
following species, as some will have it. ... Phrenitis, which 
the Greeks derive from the word </>pjv, is a disease of the mind, with 
a continual madness or dotage, which hath an acute fever annexed, 
or else an inflammation of the brain, or the membranes or kells of 
it, with an acute fever, which causeth madness and dotage.' Burton, 
Anat. of Mel, ed. Shilleto, i. 159-60. 

5. 8. 112 f. 01 /nit KaKodalfuav, etc. See variants. 'This Greek is 
from the Plutus of Aristophanes, Act 4, Sc. 3.' W. 

Accordingly to Blaydes's edition, 1886, n. 850-2. He reads Of/wi 
KaKoSalfjuav, etc. (Ah! me miserable, and thrice miserable, and four 
times, and five times, and twelve times, and ten thousand times.) 
5. 8. 116 Quebre'mos, etc. Let's break his eye in jest. 
5. 8. 118 Di gratia, etc. If you please, sir, if you have money, 
give me some of it. 

5. 8. 119 f. Ouy, Ouy Monsieur, etc. Yes, yes, sir, a poor devil! 
a poor little devil ! 

5. 8. 121 by his seuerall languages. Cf. Marston, Malcontent, 
Wks. i. 212: 'Mai. Phew! the devil: let him possess thee; he'll 
teach thee to speak all languages most readily and strangely.' 

5. 8. 132 Such an infernall stincke, etc. Dr. Henry More says 
that the devil's 'leaving an ill smell behind him seems to imply the 
reality of the business', and that it is due to 'those adscititious 
particles he held together in his visible vehicle being loosened at his 
vanishing' (see Lowell, Lit. Essays 2. 347)- 

5. 8. 133 S 4 . Pulchars Steeple. St. Sepulchre in the Bailey 
(occasionally written St. Tulcher's) is a church at the western end 
of Newgate Street and in the ward of Farringdon Without. A 
church existed here in the twelfth century. The church which 
Jonson knew was built in the middle of the fifteenth century. The 
body of the church was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666. 

It was the custom formerly for the clerk or bellman of St. Sepul 
chre's to go under Newgate on the night preceding the execution of 
a criminal, and, ringing his bell, to repeat certain verses, calling the 
prisoner to repentance. Another curious custom observed at thi 
church was that of presenting a nosegay to every criminal on his 

212 The Diuell is an Asse [Acx v 

way to Tyburn (see Wh-C). The executed criminals were buried 
in the churchyard (cf. Middleton, Black Book, Wks. 8. 25). 

Cunningham says that 'the word steeple was not used in the 
restricted sense to which we now confine it. The tower of St. 
Sepulchre's in Jonson's time, must have been very much like what 
we now see it as most carefully and tastefully restored.' 

5. 8. 134 as farre as Ware. This is a distance of about 22 miles. 
Ware is an ancient market-town of Herts, situated in a valley on 
the north side of the river Lea. The 'great bed of Ware' is men 
tioned in Twelfth Night 3. 2. 51, and the town is characterized as 
'durty Ware' in Dekker's North-ward Hoe, Wks. 3. 53. 

5. 8. 142, 3 I will tell truth, etc. Jonson uses this proverb again 
in Tale Tub, Wks. 6. 150: 'tell troth and shame the devil.' 




This glossary is designed to include obsolete, archaic, dialectal, and 
rare words ; current words used in obsolete, archaic, or exceptional 
senses; and, so far as practicable, obsolete and archaic phrases. Cur 
rent words in current uses have occasionally been included to avoid 
confusion, as well as technical words unfamiliar to the ordinary reader. 
Favorite words have been treated, for the sake of illustration, with 
especial fullness. 

For most words treated in its volumes published up to March, 1905, 
Murray's New English Dictionary is the chief authority. For words 
not reached by that work the Century Dictionary has been preferred. 
The Stanford Dictionary has been found especially useful for anglicized 
words. It has often been necessary to resort to contemporary foreign 
dictionaries in the case of words of Romance origin. 

It has been thought best to refer to all or nearly all important pas 
sages. Etymologies are given only in cases of especial interest. 

A dagger before a word or definition indicates that the word or the 
particular meaning is obsolete; parallel lines before a word, that it has 
never become naturalized in English; an interrogation point, that the 
case is doubtful. 

A, prep. [Worn down from OE. 
preposition an, on.} With be: en 
gaged in. Arch, or dial. 5. I. 4- 

fA', prep. Worn down from of. 
5- 2. 38. 

Aboue, adv. Surpassing in de 
gree ; exceedingly. 3. 6. 33. 

Abuse, v. fTo impose upon, de 
ceive. 5. 8. 140 ; 4. 2. 41 ; 4. 7- 80. 

Academy, n. ?A school of de 
portment. 2. 8. 20; 3. 5. 33. 

Access, n. fApproach; advance. 
2. 6. 68. 

Accompt, n. [Form of account.] 
A report. 2. 7. 28. 

Accomptant, fo. [Form of ac 
countant.] Liable to give an ac 
count; accountable. 5. 2. u. 

Account, n. fReckoning, con 
sideration. Phr. make account: To 
reckon, consider. 4. i. 10. 

Acknowledge, v. To recognize 
a service as (from a person). 4. 3. 


Admire, v. -fintr. To feel or 
express surprise ; to wonder . 1 . 1 . 77- 


The Din ell is an Asse 

Aduise, v. To warn, dissuade 
f(from a course). 5. 4. 43. 

Aerie, a. [Form of airy.] 
Lively, vivacious. 4. 4. 157- aery. 

3- 5- 13- 

Affection, n. fMental tendency; 
disposition. 4. 4. 126. 

Afore, prep. In the presence of. 
Arch, or dial. 4. 4. 167; 5. 5. 7. 

Aforehand, adv. Arch. In ad 
vance, i. 3. 41. 

After-game, n. 'Prop., a second 
game played in order to reverse or 
improve the issues of the first; 
hence, "The scheme which may be 
laid or the expedients which are 
practised after the original game has 
miscarried ; methods taken after the 
first turn of affairs" (Johnson).' 
NED. 4. 7. 84. 

||Alcorc,a, n. Sp. 'A conserue.' 

Alcorea, n. pr. for Alcorqa, g. v. 

4- 4- 144- 

HAllum Scagliola, . It. ?Rock 
alum. 4. 4. 30. 

fAlmaine-leape, n. A dancing- 
leap, i. i. 97. 

Almanack-Man, n. fA fortune 
teller, foreteller, i. 7. 25. 

||Almoiauana, n. Sp. 'A kinde 
of cheese-cake.' Minsheu. 4. 4. 143. 

Almond milke, n. 'CHAMBERS 
Cycl. Supp., Almond-milk is a prep 
aration made of sweet blanched al 
monds and water, of some use in 
medicine, as an emollient.' NED. 
i. 6. 222. 

HAluagada, n. pr. same as Al- 
vaydlde, q. v. 4. 4. 27. 

||Aluayalde or Albayalde, n. Sp. 
'A white colour to paint womens 
faces called ceruse.' Minsheu. 

Ancient, a. PBelonging to an 
old family, i. 2. 17. 

And, conj. flf- 3- 5- 39- and', 
i. 3. 23. an', i. 2. 31. 

Angel, n. 'An old English gold 
coin, called more fully at first the 
ANGEL-NOBLE, being originally a new 
issue of the Noble, having as its 
device the archangel Michael stand 
ing upon, and piercing the dragon.' 
NED. Pr. about 10 s. 2. i. 138. 

Anone, adv. Now again. P. 10. 

fAp-perill, n. Risk. 5. 4. 34. 
1 1 Aqua nanfa, n. Sp. [Corrup 
tion of acqua nanfa.] 'Sweet water 
smelling of muske and Orenge- 
leaves.' Florio. 4. 4. 146. 

||Aqua-vitae, n. Any form of 
ardent spirits. 2. I. 5. 

Arbitrary, a. Law. Discretion 
ary; not fixed. 3. 3. 75. 

jArcana, n. [PI. of L. o. arca 
num, used subst.] Secrets, myste 
ries. 4. 4. 151. 

||Argentata, n. It. 'A painting 
for women's faces.' Florio. 4. 4. 

Argument, n. Subject-matter of 
discussion or discourse ; theme, 
subject. Obs. or arch. i. 6. 10. 

Arras, n. [Arras, name of a town 
in Artois, famed for its manufac 
ture of the fabric.] A hanging 
screen of a rich tapestry fabric 
formerly placed around the walls of 
household apartments, i. 2. 46. 

Art, n. i. A contrivance. 1.7.24. 

f2. Magic art. i. 5. 21. 

Artist, n. fA professor of magic 
arts; an astrologer, i. 2. 22. 

As, conj. fWith finite verb : 
That. i. 4. 30; i. 6. 61 ; 3. 2. 23. 

As, adv. Phr. as that: Even as 
(in parallel clause, introducing a 
known circumstance with which a 
hynothesis is contrasted). 5. I. 20. 

Assure, v. fTo secure. 3. 5. 68. 


At, prep. Upon. i. 6. 114. 

Atchieue, v. [Form of achieve.} 
fTo gain, win (a material acquisi 
tion). 3. 5. 67. 

Attemp, n. [Form of attempt.] 
Endeavor to win over. 2. 2. 30. 

Attempt, v. To try to win over, 
or seduce. Arch. 4. 5. 7. 

Audit, n. A statement of ac 
count. Fig., arch. 3. 3. 229. 

Aye, adv. At all times, on all 
occasions. (Now only Sc. and 
north dial.) i. 6. 220. 

Ayre, n. [Form of air.] Man 
ner; sort. 2. 7. 21. 

Baffle, v. fTo treat with con 
tempt. 4. 7. 73 SN. 

Bag, n. The sac (of the bee) 
containing honey. 2. 6. 112. 

Bailie, n. [Form of bailiff.] An 
officer of justice under a sheriff; a 
warrant officer. 3. 3. 38. 

Bane, n. i. Poison. 2. 7. 18. 

f2. As exclam. 'Plague.' 5. 6. 66. 

Banke, w. fAn artificial earth 
work, an embankment. 2. I. 56. 

Bare, a. Bare-headed. Arch. 
2. 3- 37- 

Bate, v. fi- To deprive (of). 
4- i. 56. 

f2. To make a reduction (of) ; to 
deduct. 2. i. 83; 2. i. 104. 

Baudy, 2. 8. 73. See Bawdy. 

Bawd-ledger, n. Resident minis 
ter to the bawds (a mock title 
coined by Jonson). 5. 6. 64. 

Bawdry, n. Arch. Lewd talk; 
obscenity. 4. 4. 176. 

Bawdy, a. i. Lewd. 2. i. 167. 

2. absol. quasi-sb. Lewd lan 
guage, obscenity. 4. 4. 165. baudy. 
2. 8. 73- 

Be, v. pi. Are. Ota. or dial. 
2. 8. 63. 

Bed-fellow, n. flntimate com 
panion. 2. 8. 9. 

Behaue, t>. -ftrans. To manage. 
2. 8. 71. 

Benefit, . Advantage. fPhr. 
make benefit of : To take advantage 
of. ?Obs. 2. 2. 98. 

Beniamin, n. Gum benzoin, an 
aromatic resin obtained from the 
Styrax benzoin, a tree of Sumatra, 
Java, and the neighboring islands, 
used in medicine, perfumery, and 

||Beniamin di gotta, n. ?Gum 
benzoin in drops. See Beniamin. 
4- 4- 33- 

Bespeake, v. trans, w. reft. To 
engage, i. 6. 214. 

Bestow, v. To deposit. Arch. 
3- 2. 9. 

Black-water, n. 3. 3. 179. See 

Blanck manger, n. [Form of 
blancmange.] f'A dish composed 
usually of fowl, but also of other 
meat, minced with cream, rice, al 
monds, sugar, eggs, etc.' NED. 
i. 6. 240. 

Blank, n. 'A small French coin, 
originally of silver, but afterwards 
of copper; also a silver coin of 
Henry V. current in the parts of 
France then held by the English. 
According to Littre, the French 
blanc was worth 5 deniers. The 
application of the name in the I7th 
Cen. is uncertain.' NED. 3. 3. 33- 

Blesse, v. fTo protect, save 
(from). 4. 4. 187. 

Blocke, n. A mould. Spec. 
Brokers blocke : A mould for clothes 
in a pawnbroker's shop. 2. 7. 15. 

Blocke-head, n. fA wooden 
block for hats or wigs; hence, a 
blockish or stupid head. 3. 5. 65. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Board, n. Phr. tall board: ?A 
gaming table. . 4. 5. 32. See note. 

Booke, n. fA charter or deed; 
a written grant of privileges. 3. 3- 

67; 3- 3- 79- 

||Borachio, n. Ota. 'A large 
leather bottle or bag used in Spain 
for wine or other liquors.' NED. 
2. i. 71. 

Bound, ppl. a. Under obligations 
of gratitude. 4. I. n. 

Bouzy, a. [Form of bousy.] 
Sotted. 5. 6. 25. 

Brach, n. Arch. A bitch-hound. 
4. 4. 229. 

Braue, a. i. Finely-dressed, /ircft. 

1. 4. 16; 2. 5. ii. 

2. A general epithet of admira 
tion or praise. Arch. i. 2. 52; 

2. 6. 75 ; 3. 4. 12 ; 4. 6. 29. 
\interj. 3. Capital! i. i. 67. 
Brauery, n. fA fine thing; a 

matter to boast or be proud of. 
3- 6. 47- 

Breake, v. fTo speak confiden 
tially {with a person of a thing). 
3- 4- 62. 

Bring, t;. Phr. bring up : ? Aug 
ment, increase, i. 4. 96. 

Bristo-stone, n. 'A kind of 
transparent rock-crystal found in 
the Clifton limestone near Bristol, 
resembling the diamond in bril 
liancy.' NED. 3. 3. 173. 

Broker, n. i. A pawnbroker, 
i. i. 143; i. 4. 19. 

2. With added function of agent 
or intermediary, i. 4. 4. 

Brooke, v. fTo endure; not to 
discredit; to be sufficiently appro 
priate for. 2. 8. 63. 

Buckram, a. A kind of coarse 
linen or cloth stiffened with gum or 
paste. 2. i. 63. 

Bullion, n. fMore fully, bullion- 
hose : Trunk-hose, puffed out at the 
upper part, in several folds. 3. 3. 

Bush, n. A branch of ivy used 
as vintner's sign ; hence, the sign 
board of a tavern. 3. 3. 170. 

Businesse, n. fi. Affectedly used 
for an 'affair of honor,' a duel. 

3. 3. 106. 

f2. A misunderstanding, quarrel. 

4. i. 18. 

Busse, v. Arch, and dial. To 
kiss. 3. 6. i. 

Buzz, v. Phr. buzz at: I. To 
hum about, as an insect. 

f2. To whisper to; incite by sug 
gestions. Used quibblingly in both 
senses. 2. 7. 4. 

fBy cause, phr. used as con/. 
Because. 5. 4. 24. 

Cabbin, n. fA small room, a 
boudoir. I. 6. 238. 

Cabinet, n. A small chamber or 
room ; a boudoir. Arch, or obs. 

4- 4- 152. 

Campheere, n. [Form of cam 
phor.} 4. 4. 22. 

Can, v. f/r. To have at one's 
command ; to be able to supply, de 
vise or suggest (a pregnant use). 

3- 6. 39- 

Caract, n. [Form of carat. 
Confused with caract = Character.] 
fValue, estimate. Phr. at all car- 
acts : 'To the minutest circum 
stance.' Gifford. i. 6. 88. 

fCaravance, n. 'Name of sundry 
kinds of peas and small beans.' 

fCarrauicins, n. perh. = cara- 
vance, q. v. 4. 4. 45. 



Care, v. To take care. Now 
only dial. I. i. 29. 

Carefull, a. Anxious, solicitous. 
Arch. i. 6. 10. 

tCaroch, n. A coach or chariot 
of a stately or luxurious kind. i. 6. 
214. Carroch. 4. 2. n. 

Carry, v. i. /r. To conduct, 
manage. Arch. 3. 5. 53. 

?f2. wfr. To be arranged. 3. 3. 

Case, n. i. The body (as enclos 
ing the soul, etc.). 5. 6. 39. 

2. Condition, supposition. Phr. 
in case to : In a condition or posi 
tion to; prepared, ready. Arch. 
4. 7. 85. Put case : Suppose. ?Arch. 
4. 4. 228. 

Cast, v. fi. To estimate. 2. i. 

f2. To devise. 2. 8. 42. 

Castle-soape, n. Obs. form of 
Castile soap. 5. 3. 3. 

||Cataputia, n. [In Med. L. and 
It.] 'The hearbe spurge.' Florio. 
4- 4- 55- 

fCater, n. 'A buyer of provi 
sions or "cates" ; in large house 
holds the officer who made the 
necessary purchases of provisions.' 
NED. i. 3. 13- 

Catholike, a. fUniversally effi 
cient, i. 4. 35. 

fCause, COM/. Obs. exc. dial. 
[An elliptic use of the noun for 
because.] Because. 2. 8. 28; 4. 6. 
34. Phr. by cause. See By cause. 

fCautelous, a. Crafty, i. 6. 142. 

Caution, n. i. Security; guaran 
tee. 3. 4. 30; 58. 

2. A word of warning. 4. 5. 28. 

Ceruse, n. [White lead.] A 
paint or cosmetic for the skin ; used 
vaguely. 4. 4. 53. 

Challengee, n. Rare (perh. 
coined by Jonson). One who is 
challenged. 3. 3. 141. 

Character, n. A cabalistic or 
magical sign. i. 2. 9. 

Charge, n. Expenses; outlay. 
Arch. 2. i. 49; i. 6. 172. 

Chartell, n. [Form of cartel.] 
A written challenge. 3. 3. 140. 

Chaw, v. A common by-form of 
i cheiv in the :6-i7th c. 4. 2. 53. 

Cheat, n. fAny product of con- 
i quest or robbery ; booty, spoil. 
i i. 7- 4- 

Cheat, v. Phr. cheat on: To 
cheat. 5. 6. 54. 

Cheater, . fA dishonest game 
ster; a sharper. 5. 6. 64. 

Check, n. fReproof, censure. 
3- 6. 44- 

Cheese-trencher, n. A wooden 
plate for holding or cutting cheese. 
P. 8. 

Christall, n. [Form of crystal] 
A piece of rock-crystal or similar 
mineral used in magic art. T. 2. 6. 

fCioppino, . [Italianated form 
of chopine.] A kind of shoe raised 
above the ground by means of a 
cork sole or the like ; worn about 
1600 in Spain and Italy, esp. at 
Venice, where they were monstrously 
exaggerated. 3. 4. 13 (see note) ; 
4. 4. 69. 

Cipher, n. A means of convey 
ing secret intelligence : used vaguely. 
2. i. 167. 

Circle, n. i. An embrace, i. 4. 


2. Sphere (of influence, etc.). 

i. 6. 96. 

3. A circular figure (of magic), 
i. 2. 26. 

Cloake-charge, n. The expense 


The Diuell is an Asse 

of a cjoak (coined by Jonson). 2. 
2. 42. 
Cockscomb, n. fA simpleton. 

5- 8. 40. 

Cock-stone, n. fA name of the 
kidney-bean, i. i. 53. 

Cog, v. To cheat, esp. at dice or 
cards. I. I. 48. 

fCokes, M. A simpleton, one 
easily 'taken in.' 2. 2. 104. 

Collect, v. To infer, deduce. 
Rare. i. 6. 234. 

Come, v. Phr. come off: (in im 
perative as a call of encouragement 
to action) Come! come along! 3. 5. 

Comming, ppl. a. Inclined to 
make or meet advances. 4. 4. 180. 

Commoner, n. fA member of 
the general body of a town-council. 
2. i. 42. 

Complement, M. fi- Anything 
which goes to make up or fully 
equip. 3. 4. 33. 

f2. Polite or ceremonious greet 
ings. 3. 5. 15. 

Complexion, n. fi. The com 
bination of the four 'humors' of 
the body in a certain proportion; 
'temperament.' 2. 2. 122. 

f2. Bodily habit or constitution. 

5. i. 18. 

?3. Appearance of the skin. i. 4. 
63 (or perh.. as 2). 

t4- A coloring preparation, cos 
metic. 4. 4. 12. 

5. Appearance, aspect (fig.). 2. 

6. 50. 

Comport, v. Phr. comport with : 
fTo act in accordance with. 2. 8. 17. 

llCompos mentis, a. phr. [L. f. 
com-potis.~\ Ofsoundmind. 5.3.12. 

Compter, n. Old spelling of 
Counter. The name of certain city 

prisons for debtors ; esp. the two 
London Compters. 3. i. 20 (see 

Conceit, n. fi- Idea, device. 
2. 8. 23. conceipt. 

f2. Personal opinion. 4. 4. 200. 

3. Phr. Out of conceipt : Out of 
patience, dissatisfied. 2. 8. 18. 

Concerne, v. 'fintr. To be of 
importance. 3. 3. 113. 

Concurrence, n. A juncture; a 
condition : used vaguely. 2. 6. 54. 

Conduit-head, n. fA structure 
from which water is distributed or 
made to issue : a reservoir. 5. i. 27. 

Confine, v. Imprison. Const, 
t/o. 5. 6. 34. 

Confute, v. To put to silence (by 
physical means). 5. 6. 18. 

Content, a. t Willing, i. i. 133. 

Conuenient, a. fi- Due, proper, 
i. 4. 79. 

f2. Suitable. 4. 4. 230. 

Conuey, v. To carry from one 
place to another (fused of small 
objects and with connotation of 
secrecy). 2. i. 164. 

Coozen, v. [Form of cozen.] 
To cheat. 3. i. 22. cossen. 5. 2. 

Coozener, n. [Form of cosener.] 
Impostor. 5. 8. 148. 

||Coquetta, n. Sp. A small loaf. 

4- 4- H3- 

Corn-ground, n. Arch. A piece 
of land used for growing corn; 
corn-land. 3. I. 17. 

Cornish, a. Phr. C. counterfeit: 
referring to the 'Cornish stone' or 
'diamond,' a variety of quartz found 
in Cornwall. 3. 3. 173. 

Cossen, v. 5. 2. 29. See Coosen. 

Councell, n. Obs. form of coun 
cil. 3. I. 34; 5. 2. 20. 



Court, v. Phr. court it : To play 
or act the courtier. 3. 4. 56. 

Court-ship, n. fAn act of court 
esy (used in pi.) i. 6. 201. 

Coyle, n. [Form of coil.} ?An 
embarrassing situation ; a 'mess.' 

5- 5- 54- 

Crack, v. intr. To break the 
musical quality of the voice (used 

fig-)- 5- 5- 59- 

Cracke, n. fA lively lad; a 
'rogue' (playfully), a wag. 2. 8. 58. 

fCrambe, n. [Form of crambo.] 
'A game in which one player gives 
a word or line of verse to which 
each of the others has to find a 
rime.' NED. 5. 8. no. 

Creak, v. To exhibit the char 
acteristics of; to betray (a fig. use 
of the lit. meaning). 2. 2. 87. 

Credit, n. fi. Authority, i. 4. 

f2. Repute. 5. 6. 49. 

Crisped, ppl. a. Closely curled; 
as applied to trees of uncertain sig 
nificance. 2. 6. 78 (see note). 

Cunning, a. fLearned ; versed 
in. 2. 4. 12. 

Custard, n. f'Formerly, a kind 
of open pie containing pieces of 
meat or fruit covered with a prepa 
ration of broth or milk, thickened 
with eggs, sweetened, and seasoned 
with spices, etc.' NED. i. i. 97. 

Cutpurse, n. One who steals by 
cutting purses ; hence, a thief, 
i. i. 140. 

Cut-work, n. f 1 - 'A kind of 
openwork embroidery or lace worn 
in the latter part of the i6th and in 
the 1 7th c.' NED. 2. I. 163; 3. 3. 

f2. attrib. i. i. 128. cut-worke. 

Danger, n. fMischief, harm. 
2. 6. 30. 

fDaw, v. Rare. To frighten, 
torment. 4. 4. 208. 

Dearling, n. Obs. form of darl 
ing. 5. 6. 74. 

Decimo sexto. ?0bs. 'A term 
denoting the size of a book, or of 
the page of a book, in which each 
leaf is one-sixteenth of a full sheet ; 
properly SEXTO-DECIMO (usually ab 
breviated i6mo.).' NED. Also 
applied fig. to a diminutive person 
or thing: hence, ?An exquisite or 
perfect condition. 4. 4. 50. 

Deed of Feoffment, phr. 4. 6. 44. 
See Feoffment. 

Defeate, n. fUndoing, ruin. 
Phr. do defeate upon: To do injury 
to;' to bring about the ruin of. 
2. 6. 21. 

Defend, v. fTo prohibit, forbid. 
Obs. exc. dial. i. 4. 97. 

Degree, n. i. A high degree or 
quality. 2. i. 89. 

2. Any degree. 4. 3. 26. 

Delicate, a. fi- Charming. 

f2. VoluptUOUS. 2. 2. 103 ; 2. 2. 

126. Both meanings seem to be 

Delude, v. fTo frustrate the aim 
or purpose of. i. 6. 54. 

fDeneer, n. [Form of Denier, 
obs. or arc h.] A French coin, the 
twelfth of a sou; originally of sil 
ver, but from the i6th c. of copper. 
Hence (esp. in negative phrases) 
used as the type of a very small 
sum. 3. 3. 188. 

Deny, v. PProve false to. i. 4- 


Depart, v. fPhr. depart -tvith: 
To part with; give up. i. 4- 58; 
i. 4- 83. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Dependance, w. fA quarrel or 
affair 'depending,' or awaiting 
settlement. 3. 3. 130. 

Devil, . Jonson uses the follow 
ing forms: Deuill. 5. 5. 49, etc.; 
Diuel. 5. 5. 20; Diuell. Title- 
page, etc. 

Diligence, n. f/>/. Labors, exer 
tions. 2. 2. 106. 

Discourse, n. fConversational 
power. 4. 4. 225. 

Discourse, v. To discuss. Arch. 
4. 2. 40. 

Dishonesty, n. fUnchastity. 4. 
4. 158. 

fDispleasant, a. Displeasing ; 
disagreeable. Epilogue 6. 

Distast, n. fQuarrel. 3. 3. 77. 

Diuident, w. [Erron. spelling of 
dividend.} fThe share (of any 
thing divided among a number of 
persons) that falls to each to re 
ceive. 2. i. 123; 3. 3. 201. 

Dotage, n. Infatuation. 5. 8. 
92 (see note). 

Dottrel, n. i. A species of plover 
(Eudromias morinellus). 

2. A silly person; one easily 
'taken in.' 2. 8. 59. See note 2. 2. 

Doublet, n. A close-fitting body- 
garment, with or without sleeves, 
worn by men from the I4th to the 
i8th centuries. Obs. exc. Hist. 
i. i. 52. Phr. hose and doublet: 
as the typical male attire, i. 6. 151. 

Doubt, n. f Apprehension ; fear. 
5- i. 8. 

Doubt, v. fTo suspect; have 
suspicions about. 2. 6. 47. 

Dough-bak'd, ppl. a. Now dial. 
Imperfectly baked, so as to remain 
doughy. 4. 4. 20. 

Doxey, n. 'Originally the term 
in Vagabonds' Cant for the un 

married mistress of a beggar or 
rogue : hence, slang, a mistress, 
prostitute.' NED. 2. 8. 38. 

Draw, v. fi. To pass through a 
strainer; to bring to proper con 
sistence, i. 6. 222. 

2. To frame, draw up (a docu 
ment). 3. 3. 67. 

f3. intr. To withdraw. 2. i. 127. 

4. Phr. draw to : To come upon ; 
to catch up with. 2. 6. 24. 

Dwindle, v. t'To shrink (with 
fear.) Obs., rare. (Prob. a misuse 
owing to two senses of shrink.)' 
NED. 4. 4. 63. 

Effectuall, a. PEarnest. 2. 2. 

fE-la, n. Mus. Obs. exc. Hist. 
[f. E-j-La; denoting the particular 
note E which occurred only in the 
seventh Hexachord, in which it was 
sung to the syllable la.\ 'The high 
est note in the Gamut, or the highest 
note of the 7th Hexachord of Guido, 
answering to the upper E in the 
treble.' NED. Fig. of something 
very ambitious. 5. 5. 59. 

Employ, v. fPhr. employ out : 
To send out (a person) with a com 
mission. 5. 5. 46. 

Engag'd, ppl. a. i. Morally 
bound. 4. 6. 9. 

f2. Involved, hampered. I. 2. 41. 

t3- Made security for a payment; 
rendered liable for a debt. 3. 3. 90. 

Enlarge, v. tPhr. enlarge vpon, 
reft, absol. : To expand (oneself) in 
words, give free vent to one's 
thoughts. 2. i. 128. 

Ensigne, n. fToken ; signal dis 
played. ?Obs. i. 6. 210. 

Enter, v. Phrases, fi. Enter a 
bond : To enter into a bond ; to 
sign a bond. i. 7. 17. 



f2. Enter trust with : To repose 
confidence in. 3. 4. 36. 

Entertaine, v. fi- To give recep 
tion to; receive (a person), i. 2. 

|2. To take into one's service ; 
hire. 3. 5. 19. 

Enter-view, n. Obs. form of 
interview. 2. 6. 23. 

Enuious, a. fHateful. i. 6. 196. 

Enuy, n. fill-will, enmity. 2. 6. 

Enuy, v. trans. fTo begrudge (a 
thing), i. 6. 13. 

Equiuock, n. [Obs. form (or 
misspelling) of equivoke.] The 
use of words in a double meaning 
with intent to deceive : = Equivoca 
tion. Rare. 3. 3. 184. 

Erect, v. fTo set up, establish, 
found (an office). Obs. or arch. 
exc. in Law. 3. 3. 67. 

IJEscudero, n. Sp. An attendant; 
a lady's page. 4. 4. 87. 

Euill, n. The Vice, q. v. 5. 6. 76. 

Exchequer, n. The office of the 
Exchequer; used hyperbol. for the 
source of wealth. 3. 3. 81. 

Extraordinary, -fadv. Extra 
ordinarily, i. i. 116. 

Extreme, fadv. Extremely, i. 
7- 27. 

Extremity, n. ?An extreme in 
stance, i. 5. 15. 

Face, n. Attitude (towards) ; 
reception (of). P. 21. 

Fact, n. fi. The making, manu 
facture. 3. 4. 49. 

2. Phr. with one's fact: as an 
actual experience. 5. 6. 13. 

Faine, v. Obs. form of feign. 
5- 5- 28. 

Fauour, n. fi. Leave, permis 
sion. Phr. under (your) fauour: 

with all submission, subject to cor 
rection. Obs. or arch. i. 3. 27. 

2. PComeliness; Pface. 4. 6. 49. 

Feate, n. A business transaction. 
3- 3- 227. 

Fellow, n. Phr. good fellow: Of 
a woman. A term of familiar 
address. 5. I. 5. 

Feoffee, n. The person to whom 
a freehold estate in land is conveyed 
by a feoffment. 3. 5. 60. 

Feoffment, n. 'The action of in 
vesting a person with a fief or fee. 
In technical language applied esp. 
to the particular mode of convey 
ance (originally the only one used, 
but now almost obsolete) in which 
a person is invested in a freehold 
estate in lands by livery of seisin 
(at common law generally, but not 
necessarily, evidenced by a deed, 
which, however, is not required by 
statute).' NED. 4. 5. 15; 4. 7. 7. 

Phr. Deed of Feoffment: The 
instrument or deed by which cor 
poreal hereditaments are conveyed.' 
NED. 4. 6. 44. 

Fetch, v. i. To earn; get 
(money). 2. I. 72. 

f2. To perform, take (a leap). 

i. i. 55- 

t3. Phr. Fetch again : To revive, 
restore to consciousness. 2. i. 4. 

fFiggum, n. PJuggler's tricks 
(not found elsewhere). 5. 8. 82. 

Finenesse, n. f'Overstrained and 
factitious scrupulousness.' Gifford. 

3- 3- 104- 

Firke, v. fTo frisk about; ?to 
hitch oneself (Cunningham). 5. 6. 


Fixed, ppl. a. Made rigid or im 
mobile (by emotion). I. 5. 2. 

Fizzling, vbl. sb. fBreakingwind 
without noise. 5. 3. 2. 

The Diuell is an Asse 

Flower, n. -fAnc. Chem. (pi.) : 
'The pulverulent form of any sub 
stance, esp. as the result of con 
densation after sublimation.' NED. 

4- 4- IQ. 

Fly, v. Of a hawk : To pursue 
by flying : used fig. 4. 7. 53. 

Flye-blowne, a. Tainted. With 
a quibble on the literal meaning. 

2. 7. 7. 

Fool, v. Phr. fool off: To de 
lude, baffle. 2. 6. 25. 

Forbeare, v. trans. fTo keep 
away from or from interfering 
with ; to leave alone. I. 3. 22. 

Forked, a. 'Horned,' cuckolded. 
2. 2. 90. 

Foyle, n. [Form of foil] A 
thin leaf of some metal placed under 
a precious stone to increase its bril 
liancy. 3. 3. 180. 

French-masque, n. pr. the 'Loo,' 
or 'Loup,' a half-mask of velvet, 
worn by females to protect the com 
plexion. 2. i. 162. 

French-time, n. PFormal and 
rhythmic measure (as characteristic 
of the French, in contrast to Italian, 
music). 3. 5. 30. 

Frolick, n. t?Humorous verses 
circulated at a feast. 2. 8. 73. 

||Fucus, n. fPaint or cosmetic 
for beautifying the skin; a wash or 
coloring for the face. 3. 4. 50 ; 4. 2. 

Fustian, n. fA kind of coarse 
cloth made of cotton and flax. 3. 3. 

'Gainst, prep. [Form of against.] 
In anticipation of. Arch. i. i. 19. 

'Gainst, conj. In anticipation 
that; in case that. Arch, or dial. 
i. I- 73; 3- 2. 39- 

Gallant, n. i. A man of fashion 
and pleasure; a fine gentleman. 
Arch. i. 7. 27; 4. 4. 167. 

f2. Of a woman : A fashionably 
attired beauty. 3. 4. 8. 

Gallant, a. Loosely, as a general 
epithet of admiration or praise : 
Splendid. Cf. Brave. Now rare. 
2. i. 58. 

Gallery, n. i. A long narrow 
platform or balcony on the outside 
of a building. 2. 2. 54. 

2. A room for pictures. 2. 5. 13. 

Galley-pot, n. [Form of galli 
pot.] 'A small earthen glazed pot, 
esp. one used by apothecaries for 
ointments and medicines.' NED. 
4- 4- 47- 

Garnish, n. slang. 'Money ex 
torted from a new prisoner, either 
as drink money for the other pris 
oners, or as a jailer's fee. Obs. 
exc. Hist.' NED. 5. 6. i (see 

Geere, n. [Form of gear.] 
PDiscourse, talk; esp. in deprecia 
tory sense, 'stuff.' Or possibly obs. 
form of jeer. i. 6. 99 (see note). 

Gentleman, n. 'A man of gentle 
birth, or having the same heraldic 
status as those of gentle birth ; 
properly, one who is entitled to 
bear arms , though not ranking 
among the nobility. Now chiefly 
Hist.' NED. 3. i. i. 

Gentleman huisher, n. 3. 4. 43. 
Same as Gentleman-vsher, q. v. 

Gentleman-vsher, n. A gentle 
man acting as usher to a person of 
superior rank. 4. 4. 134. Gentle 
man huisher. 3. 4. 43. See note 

4- 4- 134. 

Gentlewoman, n. i. A woman 
of gentle birth. 3. 3. 164. 



2. A female attendant upon a lady 
of rank. Now chiefly Hist. 5. i. 

Gleeke, n. 'A game at cards, 
played by three persons : forty-four 
cards were used, twelve being dealt 
to each player, while the remaining 
eight formed a common "stock." ' 
NED. Phr. three peny Gleeke. 5. 
2. 31- 

Glidder, v. Obs. exc. dial. To 
glaze over. 4. 4. 47. 

Globe, n. The name of a play 
house ; hence, used as a generic 
term for a play-house. 3. 3. 26. 

Go, v. Phrases, i. Goe on: as 
an expression of encouragement, 
Come along ! advance ! 3. 5. 27. 

2. Goe with : Agree with. 4. 4. 


God b'w'you [God be with you], 
Phr. Good-bye, i. 6. 223. 

Godwit, n. A marsh-bird of the 
genus Limosa. Formerly in great 
repute, when fattened, for the table. 
3- 3- 25. 

fGogs-nownes, n. A corrupt 
form of 'God's wounds' employed in 
oaths, i. i. 50. 

Gold-smith, n. A worker in 
gold, who (down to the i8th c.) 
acted as banker. 2. 8. 84. 

Googe, v. [Form of gouge.] To 

CUt OUt. 2. I. 94. 

Gossip, n. A familiar acquaint 
ance, chum (applied to women). 
Somewhat arch. I. 6. 219; 2. 8. 69. 

Grandee, n. A Spanish or Por 
tuguese nobleman of the highest 
rank ; hence, fA term of polite ad 
dress. P. 3. 

fGrant-paroll [Fr. grande parole], 
n. Full permission ( ?not found 
elsewhere). 5. 6. 19. 

HGrassodiserpe, n. It. P'Snake's 
fat.' Stanford. 4. 4. 34. 

Gratulate, v. Now arch, and 
poet. fi. To rejoice. Phr. gratu- 
late with: rejoice with, felicitate. 
4- i. 14- 

2. tr. To rejoice at. 5. i. 51. 

Groat, . A denomination of 
coin which was recognized from the 
i3th c. in various countries of 
Europe. The English groat was 
coined I35i(2)-i662, and was 
originally equal to four pence. fThe 
type of a very small sum (cf. 
Deneer). 5. 4. 6. 

Groome, n. i. A serving man. 
Obs. or arc h. 2. 2. 65. 

f2. With added connotation of 
contempt. 2. 2. 87. 

' | Guar da-duenna, n. Sp. A lady's 
attendant. 4. 4. 83. 

i | Guar do-duenna, n. 4. 4. 77. 
See Guarda-duenna. 

Gueld, v. [Form of Geld.} 
ftransf. and fig. To mutilate; im 
pair, i. i. 65. 

Guilt, ppl. a. [Form of gilt.} 
Gilded, i. 6. 214. 

Hand-gout, n. Gout in the 
hand; used fig. of an unwillingness 
to grant favors without a recom 
pense; hard-fistedness. 3. 3. 79. 

Hand-kercher, n. Form of 
handkerchief. Obs. exc. dial and 
vulgar. Common in literary use in 
1 6- 1 7th c. 4. 4. 89. 

Handsomenesse, n. fDecency. 

4- 3- 26. 

Hang, v. Phr. hang out: fTo 
put to death by hanging. 5. 6. 8. 

Hap', v. Shortened form of 
happen. Phr. may hap' see: May 
chance to see (in process of transi 
tion to an adverb). 3. 2. 8. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

fHard-wax, n. ?Sealing-wax. 

5- i. 39- 

Harness, v. fTo dress, apparel. 
2. 5. 6. 

fHarrington, n. Obs. exc. Hist. 
'A brass farthing token, coined by 
John, Lord Harrington, under a 
patent granted him by James I. in 
1613.' NED. 2. i. 83. 

Ha's, v. Has. (Prob. a recol 
lection of earlier forms, hafs, haves. 
Mallory.) 5. 3. 9; 4. 6. 43. 

Heare, v. Phr. heare ill of (it) : 
To be censured for. lObs. or 
tcolloq. 2. 7. 28. 

Heauy, a. fDull, stupid. 5. 6. 

Hedge, v. fPhr. hedge in: To 
secure (a debt) by including it in a 
larger one for which better security 
is obtained; to include a smaller 
debt in a larger. 2. 8. 104; 3. 2. 6. 

Height, n. i. A superior quality; 
a high degree. 2. I. 70. 

2. The highest point; the most 
important particular. 4. 4. 212. 

3. Excellence ; perfection of ac 
complishment. 2. 8. 59. 

4. Phr. at height: In the highest 
degree ; to one's utmost satisfac 
tion. 5. 3. 22. 

Here by, adv. fClose by; in this 
neighborhood. 3. 4. 41. 

His, pass. pron. jd sing. ^neut. 
Its. 2. i. 103. 

Hold, v. Phr. hold in with: To 
keep (one) on good terms with. 
?Obs. 3. 3. 221. 

Honest, a. Chaste, virtuous. 
Arch. 4. 4. 161. 

Honour, n. fAn obeisance; a 
bow or curtsy. 3. 5. 27. 

Hood, n. 'French hood, a form 
of hood worn by women in the 
i6th and I7th centuries, having the 

front band depressed over the fore 
head, and raised in folds or loops 
over the temples.' NED. i. i. 99. 

Hooke, v. i. intr. To get all 
one can ; to display a grasping 
nature. 3. 3. 156. 

2. Phr. hooke in : To secure by 
hook or by crook. 3. 3. 150. 

Hope, v. Phr. hope fo' : To have 
hope of; hope for. i. 5. i. 

Home, n. In pi., the supposed 
insignia of a cuckold. 5. 8. 34. 

Hose, n. fBreeches. Phr. hose 
and doublet, i. 6. 151. 

fHuisher, n. Obs. form of 
usher. 2. 7. 33. See Gentleman- 

Hum, n. fA kind of liquor; 
strong or double ale. i. i. 114; 
5- 8. 72. 

Humour, v. To take a fancy to. 
?Obs. i. 7. 13. 

I, Obs. form of ay. i. 2. i ; 

1, prep. In. 2. 4. 41. 

1 1 Incubus, n. 'A feigned evil 
spirit or demon (originating in per 
sonified representations of the night 
mare) supposed to descend upon 
persons in their sleep, and especially 
to seek carnal intercourse with 
women. In the Middle Ages, their 
existence was recognized by the 
ecclesiastical and civil law.' NED. 

2. 3. 26. 

1 1 In decimo sexto, phr. 4. 4. 50. 
See Decimo sexto. 

| [ Infanta, n. i. A daughter of 
the King and queen of Spain or 
Portugal ; spec, the eldest daughter 
who is not heir to the throne. 

2. -ftransf. Applied analogously 
or fancifully to other young ladies. 
4- 2. 71. 



Ingag'd, ppl. a. Obs. form of 
Engag'd. 4. 4. 168. See Engag'd I. 

Ingenious, a. fAble; talented; 
clever. 2. 8. 75. 

Ingine, n. fi- Skill in contriv 
ing, ingenuity. 2. 3. 46. 

t2. Plot; snare, wile. 2. 2. 87. 
With play on 3. 

3. Mechanical contrivance, ma 
chine ; ftrap. 

Ingrate, a. Ungrateful. Arch. 

1. 6. 174. 

Iniquity, n. The name of a 
comic character or buffoon in the 
old moralities ; a name of the Vice, 
q. v. i. i. 43; i. i. 118. 

Inquire, v. fTo seek informa 
tion concerning, investigate. 3. I. n. 

Innes of Court, sb. phr. The 
four sets of buildings belonging to 
the four legal societies which have 
the exclusive right of admitting per 
sons to practise at the bar, and hold 
a course of instruction and exam 
ination for that purpose. 3. i. 8 
(see note). 

Intend, v. fTo pay heed to; 
apprehend. 4. 4. 127. 

Intire, a. Obs. form of entire. 
[Fr. entier <L. integer, untouched.] 
Untouched, uninjured. 2. 6. 32; 
5- 6. 48. 

Intitle, v. [Form of entitle.] 
To give (a person) a rightful claim 
(to a thing). 4. 6. 38. 

Intreat, v. [Form of entreat.} 
fTo prevail on by supplication; to 
persuade. 3. 6. 44. 

lacke, n. i. The name of various 
mechanical contrivances. I. 4. 50. 

f2. A term of familiarity; pet. 

2. 2. 128. 

lewes-trumpe, n. Now rare. 
Jews' harp (an earlier name, and 

formerly equally common in Eng 
land), i. i. 92. 

Joynt-stoole, v. A stool made 
of parts joined or fitted together; 
a stool made by a joiner as dis 
tinguished from one of more clumsy 
workmanship. Obs. exc. Hist. I. 
i. 92. 

lump, v. fi. intr. Act hurriedly 
or rashly. 4. i. 5. 

f2. trans. To effect or do as 
with a jump; to dispatch. 4. i. 6. 

lust, a. fi. Complete in charac 
ter, i. 5. 10. 

2. Proper, correct. 2. 2. 122. 

luuentus, n. i. i. 50. See Lusty. 

fKell, n. The web or cocoon of 
a spinning caterpillar. Obs. exc. 
dial. 2. 6. 79. 

Kinde, n. (One's) nature. Now 
rare. Phr. man and kinde : PHuman 
nature. 2. i. 151. 

Know, v. i. To know how. 
?Obs. i. 2. 44. 

?2. pass, be known : Disclose. 2. 

i. 145- 

Knowledge, n. fi- Cognizance, 
notice. Phr. Take knozvledge (with 
clause) : To become aware. 4. 4. 

2. A matter of knowledge ; a 
known fact (a licentious use). I. 
6. 82. 

Lade, v. To load with obloquy 
or ridicule (as an ass with a bur 
den ; the consciousness of the meta 
phor being always present in the 
mind of the speaker), i. 4. 72. 

Lading, vbl. sb. A burden of 
obloquy or ridicule, i. 6. 161. See 

Lady-President, n. 4. 4. 9- See 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Larum, . fAn apparatus at 
tached to a clock or watch, to pro 
duce a ringing sound at any fixed 
hour. 4. 4. 165. 

Lasse, int. Aphetic form of 
Alas. 5. 8. 46. 

Lay, v. fTo expound, set forth. 
2. 8. 72. 

Leaguer, n. A military camp. 

3- 3- 33- 

Leaue, v. To cease. Now only 
arch. 2. 2. 79; 4. 4. 125. 

Leg, n. An obeisance made by 
drawing back one leg and bending 
the other; a bow, scrape. Esp. in 
phr. to make a leg. Now arch, or 
jocular. 4. 4. 197. legge. 2. 8. 22. 
Lentisco, n. Sp. and It. 'Prick- 
wood or Foule-rice, some call it 
Lentiske or Mastike-tree.' Florio. 
(Pistacia lentiscus.) 4. 4. 35. 

Letter of Atturney, sb. phr. A 
formal document empowering an 
other person to perform certain acts 
on one's behalf (now more usually 
'power of attorney')- 4- 5- IS- 

Lewd, a. f Ignorant (implying a 
reproach). 5. 6. 37. 

Liberall, a. Ample, large. Some 
what rare. i. 6. 179. 

Lift, v. To raise (as by a crane). 
Used fig. (a metaphor borrowed 
from Ingine's name), i. 4. i. 

Like, v. fTo be pleasing, be 
liked or approved. P. 26. 

Limb, n. i. A leg (a part of the 

?2. A leg (curtsy. See Leg). A 
quibble on the two meanings, i. 
6. 218. 

Limon, n. Obs. form of lemon. 

4- 4- 25. 

Liuery and seisen, sb. phr. erron. 
for Livery of seisin (AF. livery de 

seisin) : 'The delivery of property 
into the corporal possession of a 
person ; in the case of a house, by 
giving him the ring, latch or key 
of the door; in case of land, by 
delivering him a twig, a piece of 
turf, or the like.' NED. 4. 5. 16. 

Loose, v. Obs. form of lose. 
4- 7- 79- 

Lords-man, n. A lord's man ; an 
attendant on a lord. ?Obs. 3. 3. 

Lose, v. fTo be deprived of the 
opportunity (to do something). 

3- 4- 26. 

Lusty, a. Merry; healthy, vig 
orous. Phr. lusty luuentus: the 
title of a morality play produced c 
1550; often used allusively in the 
i6-i7th c. i. i. 50. 

Light, int. A shortened form of 
the asseveration by this light, or by 
God's light. 2. 6. 15. 

Mad-dame, n. A whimsical 
spelling of Madame. fA courtesan, 
prostitute. 4. 3. 39. 

Make, v. Phr. make away : To 
make away with ; to kill. 2. 4. 9. 

Manage, v. intr. ?To administer 
the affairs of a household. 4. 4. 193. 

Manager, n. ?One capable of 
administering the affairs of a house 
hold. 4. 4. 138. 

||Mantecada (for Mantecado), n. 
Sp. 'A cake made of honey, meal, 
and oil ; a wafer.' Pineda, 1740. 

4- 4- 143- 

Mary, int. [. <ME. Mary, the 

name of the Virgin, invoked in 

oaths.] Form of Marry. Indeed! 

1. 4. 28. 

Masque, n. A masquerade. 2. 

2. no. 



Masticke, n. 'A resinous sub 
stance obtained from the common 
mastic-tree, Pistacia Lentiscus, a 
small tree about twelve feet high, 
native in the countries about the 
Mediterranean. In the East mastic 
is chewed by the women.' CD. 
4- 2. 54- 

Match, n. fAn agreement; a 
bargain. I. 4. 67. 

Mathematicall, a. PMathemati- 
cally accurate; skillful to the point 
of precision, i. 4. 4. 

Meath, n. [Form of Mead.} A 
strong liquor, i. I. 115 (see note). 

Med'cine, v. To treat or affect 
by a chemical process. 2. i. 70. 

Mercat, n. [Form of market.} 

1. i. 10. 

Mere, a. fAbsolute, unqualified. 

2. 3. 12. meere. i. 4. 54- 
Mermaide, n. The name of a 

tavern ; hence, used as a generic 
term for a tavern. 3. 3. 26. 

Mettall, n. i. Metal. 

2. Mettle. A quibble on the two 
meanings. 2. 8. 105. 

Middling, a. fOne performing 
the function of a go-between. Phr. 
middling Gossip : A go-between, 
i. 6. 219. 

Mill, n. A lapidary wheel. 3. 3. 

fMigniard, a. Delicate, dainty, 
pretty. I. 4. 96. 

Missiue, a. Sent or proceeding 
as from some authoritative or 
official source. 3. 3. 35. 

Moiety, n. A half share. 2. i. 
46. moyety. 2. I. 48. 

Monkey, n. A term of endear 
ment; pet. JObs. 2. 2. 127. 

fMoon-ling, n. A simpleton 
fool. i. 6. 158. 

Motion, n. fA puppet-show. 

1. 6. 230. 

Much about, prep. phr. Not far 
:rom; very near. ?Obs. 4. 4. 153. 

Mungril, a. Obs. form of mon 
grel. 3. i. 39. 

Mure, v. Phr. mure up : To in 
close in walls; immure. 2. 2. 91. 

Muscatell, a. [Form of musca- 
del.] Of the muscadel grape. 2. I. 

Muscatell, n. A sweet wine. 

2. I. 102 ; 2. 2. 95. See above. 
Musceuy glasse, n. Muscovite; 

common or potash mica; the light 
colored mica of granite and similar 
rocks. P. 17. 

||Mustaccioli, n. It. [For Mos- 
taciuolli.} 'A kind of sugar or 
ginger bread.' Florio. 4. 4. 144. 

Muta, n. [?L. mutare, to 
change.] ?A dye (Pcoined by Jon- 
son). 4. 4. 56. 

fNeale, n. To temper by heat; 
anneal. 2. I. 88. 

Neare, adv. In fig. sense, Nigh. 
Phr. go neare (to). 5. i. 7- 

Need, v. intr. Be necessary. 
?Arch. 2. 8. 106. 

Neither, ad^. Also not; no 
again. lObs. 4- 7- 68. 

fNiaise, n. i. A young hawk; 
an eyas. 

2. A simpleton, pr. with quibble, 
i. 6. 18. 

Note, n. Mark, token, sign. 
JArch. 3. 3. 101. 

Noted, a. Notable; worthy of 
attention. lObs. 5. 6. 7. 

fNupson, n. A fool; a simple 
ton. 2. 2. 77. 

O', prep. Shortened form of of. 
i. Of. i. i. 108, etc. Phr. hope 
o'. i. 5. i. See Hope. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

t2. With. i. 3. 21. 

O', prep. Shortened form of on. 
i. On; upon. 4. 2. 61. 

f2. Into. i. 4. 88. 

||Obarni, n. Obs. [Russ. ofe- 
^arnyz, scalded, prepared by scald 
ing.] 'In full, mead obarni, i. e. 
"scalded mead," a drink used in 
Russia, and known in England c 
1600.' NED. i. i. 115. 

Obserue, v. fTo be attentive to ; 
look out for. i. 2. 45. 

Obtaine, v. To obtain a request ; 
with obj. cl. expressing what is 
granted. Now rare or obs. 3. 3. 86. 

Occasion, n. fA particular, esp. 
a personal need, want or require 
ment. Chiefly in pi. needs, re 
quirements. 3. 3. 57; 3. 3. 85. 

Of, prep. fFrom (after the vb. 
Fetch). 2. i. 73. 

Off, adv. [Used with ellipsis of 
go, etc., so as itself to function as 
a verb.] Phr. to off on (one's bar 
gain) : To depart from the terms 
of; to break, i. 5. 25. 

Offer, v. fi- To make the pro 
posal; suggest. 2. 8. 46. 

\2. intr. Phr. offer at : To make 
an attempt at ; to attempt. 3. 6. 30. 

||Oglio reale, n. It. PRoyal oil. 

4- 4- 52. 

On, prep. In senses now ex 
pressed by of. 'In on't and the like, 
common in literary use to c 1750; 
now dial, or vulgar.' NED. 2. 8. 
55; 2. 8. 61 ; 3. 3- 7; 3- 3- 144, 

On, pron. Obs. form of One. 

5- 2. 40. 

Order, n. Disposition of meas 
ures for the accomplishment of a 
purpose. Phr. take order: To take 
measures, make arrangements. Obs. 
or arch. i. 6. 209. 

||Ore-tenus, adv. [Med. L.] Law. 
By word of mouth. 3. 3. 140. 

Paint, v. intr. fTo change color ; 
to blush. 2. 6. 35. 

Pan, n. \. [Form of pane.] 
fA cloth; a skirt. 

2. A hollow, or depression in the 
ground, esp. one in which water 
stands. With quibble on i. 2. i. 53. 

Paragon, n. A perfect diamond; 
now applied to those weighing more 
than a hundred carats. ('In quot. 
1616 fig. of a person.' NED. This 
statement is entirely incorrect.) 3. 

3- 177- 

Parcel-, qualifying sb. Partially, 
in part. Obs. since I7th c. until 
revived by Scott. 2. 3. 15. 

Part, n. Share of action ; al 
lotted duty. In pi. ?Obs. 4. 4. 

1 1 Pastille, n. It. 'Little pasties, 
chewets.' Florio. 4. 4. 142. 

Pattent, n. Letters patent; an 
open letter under the seal of the 
state or nation, granting some right 
or privilege ; spec, such letters 
granting the exclusive right to use 
an invention. 2. I. 41 ; 4. 2. 38. 

Peace, n. Leave ; permission. 
Phr. with his peace : With his good 
leave; respectfully. (A translation 
of L. cum eius pace or eius pace; 
?not found elsewhere.) 2. 2. 78. 

||Pecunia, n. L. Money. 2. i. 3. 

||Peladore, n. Sp. A depilatory; 
preparation to remove hair. 4. 4. 


Pentacle, n. A mathematical 
figure used in magical ceremonies, 
and considered a defense against 
demons. I. 2. 8 (see note). 

fPerse'line, n. Obs. form of 
t parsley, or of 1 purslane. 4. 4. 24. 



Perspectiue, n. fA reflecting 
or combination of glasses 
producing some kind of optical de 
lusion when viewed in one way, but 
presenting objects in their true 
forms when viewed in another ; 
used fig. 2. 6. 63. 

Phantasy, n. Whimsical or de 
luded notion. ?Obs. 2. 3. 60. 

Phantsie, . [Form of fancy.] 
Imagination, i. 4. 88. 

fPhrentick, n. A frantic or 
frenzied person ; one whose mind 
is disordered. 4. 6. 49. 

Phrenticke, a. [Form of frantic.] 
Insane. Now rare. 5. 8. 91. 

Physicke, n. fNatural philos 
ophy ; physics. 2. 2. 122. 

fPicardill, n. [Form of Picca- 
dill.] A large stiff collar in fashion 
about the beginning of the reign 
of James I. 2. 2. 123 (see note). 

Piece, n. fi. A gold piece, pr. 22 
shillings (Gifford). I. 4. 5; 3. 3. 


2. Phr. at all pieces : At all points ; 
in perfect form. 2. 7. 37. 

Piece, v. To reunite, to rejoin 
(a broken friendship). JArch. 4. 

I- 37- 

Pinnace, n. i. A small sailing 

f2. Applied fig. to a woman, usu 
ally to a prostitute (sometimes, but 
not often, with complete loss of the 
metaphor), i. 6. 58. 

||Pipita [?For pepita], n. Sp. or 
It. 'A seed of a fruit, a pip, a 
kernel.' Stanford. 4. 4. 45. 

HPiueti, n. Sp. 'A kinde of per 
fume.' Minsheu. 4. 4. 150. 

Plaine, a. Unqualified, down 
right. ?Arch. 4. 4. 158. 

Plume, v. To strip off the plu 
mage of; to pluck. ?Arch. 4.4.43. 

||Pol-dipedra [IPolvo di pietra], 
n. It. ?Rock-alum. 4. 4. 30. 

Politique, a. [Form of politic.] 
Crafty, artful. 2. 2. 76. 

UPorcelletto marino, n. It. 
P'The fine Cockle or Muscle shels 
which painters put their colours in.' 
Florio. 4. 4. 34. 

Possesse, v. fTo acquaint. 
Phr. possesse with : To inform of. 

5- 5- 44- 

Posterne, n. ?A back door or 
gate. Phr. at one's posternes : Be 
hind one. 5. 6. 15. 

fPosture booke, n. ?A book 
treating of military tactics, describ 
ing the 'postures' of the musket, 
etc. 3. 2. 38 (see note). 

||Potentia, n. L. 'Power;' po 
tentiality. 5. 3. 28. 

Power, n. Law. Legal author 
ity conferred. 4. 6. 39. 

Pownce. [Form of pounce.] A 
claw or talon of a bird of prey. 

4- 7- 55- 

Pox, n. Irreg. spelling of pocks, 
pi. of pock. fPhr. pox- vpon: A 
mild imprecation. 3. 3. 38- pox o'. 

4. 2. 61. 

Practice, n. i. A plot. ?Arch. 

5- 8. 57. 

2. Treachery. ?Arch. 4. 7. 80. 
Practice, v. fi- To tamper with; 
corrupt, i. i. 38- 
2. intr. To plot; conspire. 5. 3- 

10; 5. 5- Si- 
Pragmaticke, a. Pragmatical. 

i. 6. 56. 
Pregnant, a. fConvincing ; clear. 

5. 8. 77- 

Present, a. Immediate (fr. L. 

praesens). 3. 6. 40. 

Present, n. fi. The money or 
other property one has on hand, 
i. 5. 20. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

2. The existing emergency; the 
temporary condition. 2. 6. 70. 
President, n. fA ruling spirit. 

3- 5- 38- 

Presume, v. To rely (upon). 
2. 2. 30. 

Pretend,^, i. To lay claim (to). 
2. 4. 16; 3. 3. 102. 

f2. To aspire to. i. 6. 36. 

Price, n. Estimated or reputed 
worth ; valuation. 2. 8. 105. 

Priuate, n. fPriuate account. 

5- 4- 23. 

Processe, n. Law. Summons ; 
mandate. 3. 3. 72 ; 3. 3. 139. 

Prodigious, a. f Portentous ; dis 
astrous. 2. 7. 19. 

Prefer, n. fAn essay, attempt. 
5- 6. 43- 

Proiect, v. i. tr. To devise, 
i 8. 10. 

f2. infr. To form projects or 
schemes. 3. 3. 42. 

Proiector, n. One who forms 
schemes or projects for enriching 
men. i. 7. 9. See the passage. 

Pronenesse, n. Inclination, spec. 
to sexual intercourse. 4. 4. 233. 

Proper, a. Well-formed. Now 
only prov. Eng. I. 6. 218. 

Proportion, n. i. Allotment; 
share. 2. 3. 36. 

2. Calculation; estimate. 2. i. 
90; 3. 3. 127. 

Prostitute, a. Debased; worth 
less. 3. 2. 19. 

||Pro'uedor, n. [Sp. prove edor 
= Pg. prove dor.] A purveyor. 

3- 4- 35- 

Prouinciall, w. 'In some religious 
orders, a monastic superior who has 
the general superintendence of his 
fraternity in a given district called 
a province.' CD. 5. 6. 64. 

||Prouocado, n. [ <Sp. provocar, 
to challenge.] Challengee; tone 
challenged. 3. 3. 143. 

||Prouocador, n. [ <Sp. provo- 
cador, provoker.} Challenger. 3. 
3- 142. 

Pr'y thee. [A weakened form 
of I pray thee.} Jonson uses the 
following forms : Pray thee. I. 2. 
30. Pr'y thee. 2. I. 78. 'Pr'y the. 
i. 3. 22. 

Publication, n. Notification ; 
announcement : spec, the notifica 
tion of a 'depending* quarrel by a 
preliminary settlement of one's 
estate. 3. 3. 137. 

Pug, n. fi. An elf; a spirit; a 
harmless devil. The Persons of 
the Play. 

2. A term of familiarity or en 
dearment. ?Obs. 2. 2. 128. 

Pui'nee, a. [For puisne, arch. 
form of puny, retained in legal use.] 
i. Law. Inferior in rank. 

2. Small and weak ; insignificant ; 
pr. with a quibble on I. I. I. 5. 

fPunto, n. ?Obs. Eng. fr. Sp. 
or It. punto. A delicate point of 
form, ceremony, or etiquette ; the 
'pink' of style. 4. 4. 69. 

Purchase, n. fPlunder; ill-got 
ten gain. 3. 4. 32. 

Purt'nance, n. The inwards or 
intestines. JArch. 5. 8. 107. 

Put, v. i. intr. To move; to 
venture, i. I. 24. 

Phrases. I. Put downe : To put 
to rout, vanquish (in a contest), 
i. i. 93- 

2. Put off: To dismiss (care, 
hope, etc.). 2. 2. 48; 3. 4. 25. To 
turn aside, turn back ; divert (one 
from a course of action). I. 4. 68. 



3. Put out: To invest; place at 
interest. 3. 4. 23. 

4. Put vpon : To instigate ; in 
cite. 5. 8. 141. To foist upon; 
palm off on. 3. 3. 174. 

Quality, n. i. Character, nature. 
Now rare. 3. 4, 37. 
2. High birth or rank. Now arch. 

1. i. iji. 

Quarrell, v. To find fault with 
(a person) ; to reprove angrily. 
Obs. exc. Sc. (Freq. in I7th c.). 
4- 7- 12. 

Quit, v. fTo free, rid (of). 3. 
6. 61. 

Read, v. fTo discourse. 4. 4. 

Repaire, v. To right; to win 
reparation or amends for (a per 
son). ?Obs. 2. 2. 59. 

||Rerum natura, phr. L. The na 
ture of things ; the physical uni 
verse. 3. i. 35. 

Resolu'd, ppl. a. i. Determined. 

2. 7. 13. With quibble on 2. 
2. Convinced. 

Retchlesse, a. [Form of reck 
less.} fCareless; negligent. 3. 6. 


Reuersion, n. A right or hope 
of future possession or enjoyment; 
hence, phr. in reuersion : In pros 
pect ; in expectation. 5. 4. 44. 

Rhetorique, n. Rhetorician. 
?Obs. i. 4. 102. 

fRibibe, n. A shrill-voiced old 
woman, i. i. 16. 

Right, a. True ; real ; genuine. 
Obs. or arch. 2. 2. 103. 

Roaring, a. fRoistering, quarrel 
ing. Phr. roaring manner: The 
fashion of picking a quarrel in a 

boisterous, disorderly manner. 3. 
3- 69. 

Rose, n. A knot of ribbon in the 
form of a rose used as ornamental 
tie of a shoe. i. 3. 8. 

fRose-marine, n. [The older 
and more correct form of rosemary 
<OF. rosmarin L. <josmarinus, lit. 
'sea-dew.'] Rosemary. 4. 4. 19. 

||Rouistico [Same as ligustro], n. 
It. 'Priuet or prime-print . . . 
also a kind of white flower.' Florio. 
'Pianta salvatico.' Bassano. 4. 4. 


Royster, n. A rioter; a 'roar 
ing boy.' Obs. or arch. I. I. 68. 

Rug, n. |A kind of coarse, 
nappy frieze, used especially for the 
garments of the poorer classes; a 
blanket or garment of this material. 
5- i. 47- 

fSalt, n. [L. Saltus.] A leap. 
2. 6. 75- 

Sample, v. fTo place side by 
side fqr comparison; compare. 5. 

i. 3- 

Saraband, n. A slow and stately 
dance of Spanish or oriental origin, 
primarily for a single dancer, but 
later used as a contra-dance. It 
was originally accompanied by sing 
ing and at one time severely cen 
sured for its immoral character. 
4. 4. 164 (see note). 

Sauour, v. tr. To exhibit the 
characteristics of. ?Arch. 4. I. 49- 

f'Say, v. [By apheresis from 
essay.] Phr. 'say on: To try on. 
i. 4- 37 SN. 

fScape, v. [Aphetic form of 
escape, common in England from 
i3-i7th c.] i. To escape, i. 6. 161. 

2. To miss. ?Obs. I. 4- 33- 

3. To avoid. 5. 5. 52. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

.Sciptick, n. [A humorous mis 
spelling of sceptic.] POne who 
doubts as to the truth of reality; 
applied humorously to one made 
doubtful of the reality of his own 
perceptions. 5. 2. 40. 

Scratching, vbl. sb. Eager striv 
ing; used contemptuously. JColloq. 
5- 6. 67. 

'Sdeath, int. [An abbr. of God's 
death.] An exclamation, generally 
of impatience, i. 2. 25. 

Seaming, a. Phr. seaming lace: 
'A narrow openwork braiding, gimp, 
or insertion, with parallel sides, 
used for uniting two breadths of 
linen, instead of sewing them 
directly the one to the other; used 
for garments in the I7th c.' CD. 

2. 5- 9- 

Seisen, 4. 5. 16. See Liuerie and 

fSent, v. An old, and historically 
more correct, spelling of scent. 
2. 6. 26. 

Seruant, n. fA professed lover. 
4- 3- 45- 

Session, n. Law. A sitting of 
justices in court. 5. 6. 21. 

Shame, v. To feel ashamed. 
?Obs. or arch. 5. 6. 37. 

Shape, n. Guise ; dress ; dis 
guise. lArch. 5. 3. 18. 

fShop-shift, n. A shift or trick 
of a shop-keeper. 3. 5. 4. 

Shrug, -v. refl. Phr. shrug up: 
To hitch (oneself) up (into one's 
clothes), i. 4. 80 SN. 

Signe, n. One of the twelve di 
visions of the zodiac. 4. 4. 233. 
Used fig. i. 6. 127. 

Signet, n. A seal. Formerly one 
of the seals for the authentication 
of royal grants in England, and 

affixed to documents before passing 
the privy seal. 5. 4. 22. 

Sirah, n. A word of address, 
generally equivalent to 'fellow' or 
'sir.' Obs. or arch. i. 4. 45 ; 3. 5. 
25. sirrah (addressed to a woman). 
4. 2. 66. 

t'Slid, int. An exclamation, app. 
an abbreviation of God's lid. i. 3. 

f'Slight, int. A. contraction of 
by this light or God's light, i. 2. 
15. S'light. 2. 7. 16; 2. 8. 81. 

Smock, n. i. A woman's shirt. 
i. i. 128. 

?2. A woman. 4. 4. 190. 

i|.Soda di leuante, n. It. PSoda 
from the East. 4. 4. 32 (see note). 

Soone, a. Early. Phr. soone at 
night: Early in the evening, i. i. 

fSope of Cyprus, n. PSoap 
made from the 'cyprus' or henna- 
shrub. 4. 4. 45. 

Sou't, v. pret. Pr. for sous'd, 
pret. of souse, to swoop upon (like 
a hawk). 4. 7. 54 (see note). 

fSpanish-cole, n. A perfume; 
fumigator. 4. 4. 150. 

.Spic'd, ppl. a. fScrupulous; 
squeamish. 2. 2. 81. 

Spring-head, n. A fountain 
head; a source. 3. 3. 124. 

fSpruntly, adv. Neatly; gaily; 
finely. 4. 2. 61. 

Spurne, t>. To jostle, thrust. 
P. 11. 

Squire, n. i. A servant. 2. 2. 


2. A gallant; a beau. 2. 2. 116. 

3. A gentleman who attends upon 
a lady; an escort. ?Arch. 5. 3. 


2 33 

Stalking, n. In sporting, the 
method of approaching game stealth 
ily or under cover. 2. 2. 51. 

Stand, v. Phrases. i. Stand 
for't : To enter into competition ; to 
make a claim for recognition, i. 6. 

2. Stand on : To insist upon. 

3- 3- 83. 

3. Stand vpon : To concern ; to 
be a question of. 3. 3. 60. 

.Standard, n. fA water-standard 
or conduit; spec, the Standard in 
Cheap, i. i. 56. 

State, n. fEstate. 4. 5. 30; 5. 3. 


.Stay, v. tr. I. To delay; detain. 
2. 2. 20. 

2. To maintain. lArch. 3. I. 7. 

3. To retain. JArch. 2. 4. 26. 
Still, adv. i. Ever; habitually. 

i- 5- 23. 

2. Continually. 3. 3. 27. 

Stoter, n. ?A small coin. Cun 
ningham. (Considered by W. and 
G. a misprint for Storer.) 3. 3. 32. 

Straine, n. A musical note. 
Used fig. 5. 5. 58. 

Strange, a. Immodest; unchaste. 
2. 6. 53 (see note). 

Strength, n. In pi. : abilities ; 
resources, i. i. 24; i. 4. 35. 

.Strong- water, n. i. i. 114. See 

Subtill, a. i. Tenuous; dainty; 
airy. P. 5. 

2. Cunningly devised ; ingenious. 

1. i. 116. 

Subtilty, n. i. Fineness; fine 
quality; delicacy. 2. 1.86. 
2 An artifice ; a stratagem. 2. 2. 4. 

3. Cunning; craftiness. I. I. 144. 
Subtle, a. Intricate. 2. I. 114; 

2. 2. 12. 

Sufficiency, n. Efficiency. lArch. 

3- 5- 56. 

Tabacco, n. Obs. form of to 
bacco. (Cf. Sp. Tabaco; Port, and 
It. Tabacco). i. i. 114; 5. 8. 73. 

Table-booke, n. fA memoran 
dum-book. 5. i. 39. 

Taile, n. Phr. in taile of: At 
the conclusion of. i. i. 95. 

Take, v. i. To catch (in a trap). 

2. To captivate. With quibble on 

1. 3- 6. 13. 

3. To catch; surprise. 2. I. 147; 

4- I- 27. 

4. To take effect, i. 4. 36. 
Phrases. 5. take forth: ?To 

learn. )za/. I. i. 62. 

f6. tafctf in : To capture. 3. 3. 170. 

7. tofc? t;/> : To borrow. 3. 6. 15. 

Taking, n. fConsumption ; smok 
ing (the regular phrase). 5. 8. 71. 

Talke, n. Phr. be in talke: To 
be discussing or proposing. 3. 5. 52. 

Tall, a. 4. 5. 32. See Board, 
and note. 

Tasque [ <OF. tasque], n. Obs. 
form of task. Business. 5. i. 14. 

Taste, v. i. To perceive; recog 
nize, i. 6. 138. 

2. To partake of; enjoy (tast). 

4- 4- 93- 
fTentiginous, a. Excited to lust. 

2. 3- 25. 

Terme, n. i. A period of time; 
time. 3. 3. 88. 

2. An appointed or set time. Obs. 
in general sense. I. I. 6. 

Then, conj. Obs. form of than. 
P. 10; etc. 

Thorow, prep. Obs. form of 
through, i. i. 145- 

Thorowout, prep. Obs. form of 
throughout. 2. i. 50. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Thought, n. FDevice. 2. 2. 30. 

Thumbe-ring, n. A ring de 
signed to be worn upon the thumb; 
often a seal-ring. P. 6. 

Ticket, n. fA card; a brief note. 
2. 8. 90. 

Time, . Phr. good time ! : Very 
good; very well. I. 4. 60. 

Time, v. ?To regulate at the 
proper time ; to bring timely aid to. 

3- 3- 97- 

Tissue, n. 'A woven or textile 
fabric ; specifically, in former times, 
a fine stuff, richly colored or orna 
mented, and often shot with gold or 
silver threads, a variety of cloth of 
gold.' CD. Used attrib. i. i. 126. 

To night, adv. fDuring the pre 
ceding night ; last night. 4. I. 18. 

fToo-too-, adv. Quite too ; al 
together too: noting great excess 
or intensity, and formerly so much 
affected as to be regarded as one 
word, and so often written with a 
hyphen. 3. 3. 231. 

Top, n. i. Summit; used fig. 
2. 2. 89. 

2. The highest example or type. 
?Arch. or obs. 4. 4. 244. 

Torn'd, ppl. a. Fashioned, shaped 
(by the wheel, etc.). Transf. and 
fig. 2. 6. 85. 

Tother, indef. pron. [A form 
arising from a misdivision of that 
other, ME. also thet other, as the 
tother.} Other; usually preceded 
by the. i. 3. 37. 

Toy, . i. A trifle. 2. 8. 2; 2. 
8. 50. 

2. A trifling fellow. 4. 7. 24; 

4- 7- 57- 

?3. Thing; trouble; used vaguely. 
3- 3- 222. 

Tract, n. i. A level space; spec. 
of the stage. P. 8. 

J2. Attractive influence, attrac 
tion. 2. 2. 10. 

Trauell, v. To labor ; toil. 3. 4. 

Trauell, n. fToil; anxious striv 
ing, i. 6. 119. 

Treachery, n. An act of treach 
ery. ?Obs. 3. 6. 49. 

Troth, int. In troth ; in truth. 
4 i. 21. 

Trow, v. To think, suppose. As 
a phrase added to questions, and 
expressions of indignant or con 
temptuous surprise; nearly equiva 
lent to 'I wonder.' 5. 2. 36. 

Turn, v. To sour; fig. to es 
trange. 2. 7. 38. 

Turne, n. i. Humor; mood; 
whim. 2. 2. 37. 

2. Act of service. 2. 2. 125. 

3. Present need; requirement. 3. 
3. 192. 

Vmbrella, n. fA portable shade, 
probably a sort of fan, used to pro 
tect the face from the sun. 4. 4. 81. 

Vndertaker, n. One who en 
gages in any project or business. 
?Arch. 2. i. 36. 

Vnder- write, v. To subscribe ; 
to put (one) down (for a subscrip 
tion). 3. 3. 145. 

fVnquiet, v. To disquiet. 4. I. 


Vntoward, a. Perverse, refrac 
tory. JArch. 2. 8. 16. 

Vp, adv. Set up : established. 

3- 5- 54- 

Vpon, prep. i. Directed towards 
or against; with reference to. I. I. 
13; i. 6. 112. 

2. Immediately after. 3. 3. 123. 

3. After and in consequence of. 
i. I- 39- 


2 35 

Vrge, v. To charge. Phr. vrge 
with : To charge with ; accuse of. 
lArch. 4. I. 44. 

Vse, v. To practise habitually. 

1. 3- 42. 

Vtmost, n. The extreme limit 
(of one's fate or disaster). 5. 6. 

Valor, n. Courage ; used in pi. 
4- i. 32. 

Vapours, n. pi. fA hectoring or 
bullying style of language or con 
duct, adopted by ranters and swag 
gerers with the purpose of bringing 
about a real or mock quarrel. 3. 3. 
71 (see note). 

Veer, v. Naut. To let out; pay 
out ; let run. 5. 5. 46. 

Venery, n. Gratification of the 
sexual desire. 3. 6. 7. 

fVent, v. To sell. 3. 4. 61. 

Vent, v. I. To publish; promul 
gate. 2. 3. 24. 

2. To give expression to. 2. 3. 5 ; 

2. i. 166; 5. 8. 153. 

Venter, n. Obs. form of ven 
ture, i. 6. 175. 
tVenting, vbl. sb. Selling; sale. 

3- 4- 49- 

Vernish, n. Older and obs. form 
of varnish. ?A wash to add fresh 
ness and lustre to the face ; a cos 
metic. 4. 4. 36. 

||Vetus Iniquitas, n. L. 'Old 
Iniquity,' a name of the 'Vice' in 
the morality plays. I. i. 47- 

||Via, int. It. Away! off! 2. i. 
3 (see note). 

Vice, n. i. Fault. 

f2. The favorite character in the 
English morality-plays, in the earlier 
period representing the principle of 
evil, but later degenerating into a 

mere buffoon, i. i. 44; i. i. 84; 
etc. With quibble on i. P. 9. See 
also Introduction. 
Vierger, n. Obs. form of verger. 

4- 4- 209. 

Vindicate, v. fTo avenge ; re 
taliate for. 5. 6. 49. 

Virgins milke, n. A wash for 
the face ; a cosmetic. 4. 4. 52. 

fWanion, n. 'A plague;' 'a 

vengeance.' Phr. with a wanion: 

A plague on him ; bad luck to him. 

5- 8. 33- 

Wanton, a. Playful; sportive. 

2. 6. 75. 

Ward-robe man, n. A valet, 
i. 3- 13- 

Ware, v. Beware of; take heed 
to. Arch. 5. 5. 5. 

Wast, n. Obs. form of waist, 
i. 4. 95. waste (with quibble on 
waste, a barren place). 4. 4. 204. 

Water, n. i. Essence; extract. 

4- 4- 39- 

2. -water: The property of a 
precious stone in which its beauty 
chiefly consists, involving its trans 
parency, refracting power and color. 

3. 3. 179; 181. 

3. strong-water : A distilled liquor. 

1. i. 114. 

Wedlocke, n. fA wife, i. 6. 10; 

2. 3. 18. 

Well-caparison'd, ppl. a. Well 
furnished with trappings; also fig., 
well decked out. Involving a 
quibble. 2. 5. 7. 

Wench, n. i. A mistress; strum 
pet. Obsolescent. 5. 2. 21. 

f2. A term of familiar address; 
friend. 4. i. 60. 

While, conj. Till; until. Now 
prov. Eng. and U. S. i. 3. 5- 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Wicked, a. PRoguish. 4. 4. 197. 

Widgin, n. [Form of widgeon.} 
A variety of wild duck. 5. 2. 39. 

Wis, adv. [<ME. wis.] 5-8.31- 
See Wusse. 

Wish, v. To desire (one to do 
something) ; to pray, request. 
?Arch. 2. 2. 52. 

Wit, n. i. Intellect, i. 4. 29; 

1. 4. 64. 

2. Intelligence. 3. 2. 13. 

3. Ingenuity; ingenious device. 

2. 2. 86. 

Withall, adv. Besides; in addi 
tion; at the same time. 2. 2. 27; 

3. 5. 16. with-all. 2. 2. 73. 
Wiue-hood, n. Obs. form of 

wifehood. I. 6. 50. 

Worshipfull, o. Worthy of honor 
or respect. 4. 7. 75. Used in sar 
casm. 2. 2. 89 ; 3. 3. 8. 

Wrought, ppl. a. Embroidered. 
JArch. i. 2. 47. 

fWusse, adv. [Corruption of 
wis <ME. wis, by apheresis from 
iwis; sure, certain.] Certainly; 
truly; indeed, i. 6. 40. 

Yellow-water, n. 3. 3. 181. 



||Zuccarina, n. It. 'A kind of 
bright Roche-allum.' Florio. 

||Zuccarino, n. 4. 4. 31. ?For 
Zuccarina, q. v. 

||Zucche Mugia, n. It. ?A per 
fume. 4. 4. 35. 


ABBOTT, E. A. A Shakespearian Grammar. Lond. 1891. 

ALDEN, CARROLL STORRS. Edition of Bartholomew Fair. N. Y. 1904. 

AMOS, ANDREW. The Great Oyer of Poisoning. The Trial of the Earl 
of Somerset for the Poisoning of Sir Thomas Overbury. Lond. 

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Absorption of a syllable, 174, 208. 

Academy, 174-5, 188. 

Actors, Jonson's allusions to, 175. 

Adders, 126. 

Aesop, Fables of, 185. 

Africa, 149. 

After-game, 201. 

Agrippa, Cornelius, Ixiv. 

Allegorical treatment of drama, xx f . 

Allot, Robert, 124. 

Allum Scagliola, 192. 

Almaine-leap, 137. 

Almanac-men, 156-7. 

Almoiavana, 196. 

America, 149. 

Apperil, 205. 

Aqua-vitae, 158. 

Aristophanes, xli, Ixvi, Ixxvi, Ixxix ; 

Clouds, 202; Plutus, 211. 
Art, man of, 149. 
Arthur's show, 159. 
Artillery-ground, 177. 
Astrology, 199. 

Bacon, Ixiii. 

Ballad literature, xxvii. 

Banqueting-house, Lord Mayor's, 

Bare head of usher and coachman, 

164, 196, 198. 
Baudissin, Count von, Ben Jonson 

und seine Schule, xxii. 
Bawdy, talk, 197. 
Beare, the, 124. 
Beaumont and Fletcher, Elder 

Brother, Ivi ; King and No King, 

Bedfellow, 174. 

Belfagor, Novella of, xxx ff. 

Belphegor, xxxii. 

Benefit, make, 163. 

Benjamin, 192. 

Benson, John, 124. 

Bermudas, 161, 182. 

Bethlehem Royal Hospital, 203. 

Billiard ball, 173. 

Billingsgate, 134. 

Bilson, boy of, 205. 

Blackfriars, painters at, 156; theatre, 
xvii, 150. 

Blank, 181. 

Bless us! 197. 

Blown roses, 179. 

Blue coats, 183. 

Boccaccio, Decameron, xlv ff., Ixxv. 

Bodin, Ixiv. 

Borachio, 159. 

Braganza, 196. 

Breasts exposed, 173. 

Bretnor, 141. 

Bristo-stone, 184. 

Brokers, 140. 

Brome, Antipodes, Ixii ; Court Beg 
gar, Ixi, Ixxv. 

Browne, Sir Thomas, Ixiii. 

Buckingham. See Villiers. 

Buckram bag, 159. 

Bullions, 185-6. 

Burton, boy of, 203, 205. 

Business (quarrel), 182. 

Butler, Samuel, Characters, Ixii. 

By cause, 205. 

Caract, 153- 

Caroch, carroch, 155, 190. 
Carranza, Jerome, Filosofia de las 
Armas, Iv. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Cataputia, 193. 

Cater, 146. 

Cautelous, 154. 

Centlivre, Mrs., Busie Body, Ixxv. 

Chains, gold, 183. 

Chamberfellow, 174. 

Character-drama, xliv. 

Cheapside, 178; Standard in, 131. 

Cheaters, 207. 

Cheat on, 207. 

Cheats, 156. 

Cheese-trenchers, 126. 

Chopines, see Cioppinos. 

Chrysippus, de Divinitione, 145. 

Cioppinos, liii, 186-7, I 94- 

Circles, magic, 145. 

Cloak, long, of fool, xxxix. 

Cloven foot, 146-7. 

Clown, xxiii, xxv f. 

Coaches, 156. 

Coachman, 190, 198. 

Coke, Sir Edward, xviii, Ixvi ff., 

Ixx ff. 

Cokeley, 135. 
Cokes, 164. 
Commissioners, 190. 
Compounds, Jonson's use of, 181. 
Compters, 177. 
Conduits, 201. 
Confute, 206. 
Conjurers, 145. 
Constable, 209. 
Contrasted characters, xliv. 
Cord as charm, 128. 
Corncutter, 199. 
Cornhill, 178. 
Cornish counterfeit, 184. 
Coryat, Crudities, liii, 194, 204. 
Cosmetics, 192. 
Courts of Love, 153. 
Covetuousness (in morality plays), 


Coxcomb and Coverlet, 209. 
Cranes, Three, 135. 
Crisped groves, 173. 

Crowland, 164; monastery at, Ix. 
Crystals, 144. 

Cuckold and devil, joke on, 208. 
Cushman, Dr. L. W., xxii, xxxiv, 

et passim. 
Custard, 137. 
Custom-house key, 134. 
Cut-work, 140, 162. 

Dagger, wooden, xxxix ; ordinary, 


Darling, Thomas, 203. 

Darrel, John, xxxii, xlix ff., 203. 

Date of play, xvii. 

Decimo sexto, 193. 

Defeat, do, 168. 

Dekker, // this be not a good Play, 
xxix ff . ; xxxi. 

Demoniacal possession, xlix. 

Dependencies, see Master of Depen 

Derbyshire Peak, 147. 

Despenser, Hugh le, 165. 

Devil, in pre-Shakespearian drama, 
xxii f . ; Jonson's treatment of, 
xxiii f . ; costume of, xxiv; stupid, 
xxvii ; carried in a ring, 126 ; 
leaves an evil odor, 211; divers 
names of, 145 ; ill omen to pro 
nounce the name of, 197; dines 
on sinners, 211 ; speaks languages, 
2ti; takes tobacco, 209; travels 
swiftly, 145. 

Devil-plot, xx ff. 

Devil's Cavern in Derbyshire, 147. 

Devil's dam, 188. 

Digby miracle-plays, xxiii. 

Dining, hour of, 188. 

Dinner, inviting poet to, 189. 

Dotage, 211. 

Dottrel, 163, 175, 200. 

Double cloak, 189. 

Doublet bombasted, 131. 

Dueling, liv ff. 

Dukes in England, 160. 



Dutch in England, 133. 
Dwindle, 193. 

Eckhardt, Dr. E., xxii, xxxiv, et 

Edition of 1631, xi ff. ; 1641, xiv; 

1692, xiv; 1716, xv ; 1729, xi; 

1756, xv ; 1811, xi; 1816, xvi f.; 

1838, xi ; 1871, xi ; 1875, xvii. 
Eitherside identified as Coke, Ixxi f. 
E-la, 205. 

Ellipsis before that, 174. 
Engendering by the eyes, 163. 
Equivokes, 184. 
Escudero, 195. 
Estifania, Lady, 193. 
Ethical treatment of drama, xliv. 
Exchange, Royal, 158. 

Face-painting, 190-1. 

Fair and foul, 163. 

Favor, under, 146. 

Fencing-schools, Iv. 

Fens of Lincolnshire, lix ff. 

Fern ashes, 192. 

Figgum, 210. 

Finsbury, 178. 

Fitzdottrel, xlii; identified as Coke, 

Ixx f . ; Mrs., identified as Lady 

Hatton, Ixvi ff. 

Fleas, keep, within a circle, 202. 
Fly-blown, 174. 
Fool, union with Vice, xxxv, 

xxxviii ; domestic, xxxix ; tavern, 

xl; city, xl; in Jonson's other 

works, xl. 

Ford, Fancies Chaste and Noble, Ivi. 
Forked top, 163. 
Forks, liii, 204. 
Forman, Simon, 141-3, 175. 
Foul and fowl, 163. 
Francklin, xviii, 142-3. 
Fraud (character in morality-play), 


French hood, 138; masks, 161 ; 

time, 188; walking-stick, 199. 
Friar Bacon, xxvii. 
Friar Rush, xxvii ff., xxxiv, xlix. 
Frolics, 175. 
Fucus, 190. 

Galley-pot, 193. 

Garnish, 206. 

Garters, 139-40, 168. 

Geere, 154. 

Gentleman usher, 125, 187, 195-6, 


Gentlemen of the Sword, Ivii. 
Gifford, his opinion of the 1631 

Folio, xiii; criticism of Devil is 

an Ass, Ixxvi ; Ben Jonson's 

Malignity, 166. 
Gilchrist, O., Examination . . . 

of Ben Jonson's Enmity, etc., 166. 
Globe theatre, 180. 
Gloucester, 165-7. 
Godfathers in law, 205. 
Godwit, 179. 
Gogs-nownes, 130. 
Goldsmiths, 124-5. 
Goldsmith's Row, 187. 
Good (sufficient), 176. 
Good time ! 148. 
Grandees, 125. 
Greek, devil talks in, li. 
Greenland, 167. 
Gresham, astrologer, 141 ; Sir 

Thomas, 158. 
Grim, Collier of Croydon, xxvi, 

xxxii f. 

Groen-land, see Greenland. 
Guarda-duenna, 195. 

Hall's Chronicle, 166. 
Hand-gout, 182. 
Hanging for theft, 206-7. 
Harlequin, 131. 
Harrington, 160. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Harrison, Thomas, 205. 
Harrowing of Hell, xxiii. 
Harsnet, Samuel, xlix ff. 
Hatton, Lady Elizabeth, Ixvi ff; 

Ixx f. 

Have with 'em, 190. 
Havings, 182. 
Henry, Prince, Ixiv. 
Herford, Studies, xx, et passim; 

criticism of Devil is an Ass, Ixxvi. 
Heywood, John, farces of, xxxvi f. 
Ho! Ho! xxiii, 127. 
Hogsdon, 128. 
Holland's Leaguer, Ixi. 
Hoop, 195. 
Horace, liii; Carmina, 154; de Art. 

Poet., 124; Sat., 167. 
Horestes, xxxvi. 
Horns, 208. 

Howard, Lady Frances, Ixx. 
Howes, Edmund, Ixxiii. 
Hum, 139. 

Humor-comedy, xix, xliv. 
Humphrey, Duke, 165. 
Hutchinson, Francis, Historical 

Essay, 1. 
Hyde Park, 156. 

I. B., see Benson. 
Infanta, 191. 
Iniquity, xxxvii ff., 130. 
Inns of Court, 176. 
Interludes, Vice in, xxxv. 
Intire, 168, 207. 
Italian sources, xlviii. 

Jack Juggler, xxxvii. 

James I., Demonology, Ixiii. 

Jesuits, 184-5. 

Jonson, identified with Wittipol, 
Ixvi, Ixxi; duel with Gabriel 
Spenser, 128; and Shakespeare, 
165 ; as a soldier, 181 ; Alchemist, 
xix, Ivii, Ixxv; Case is Altered, 

xlix, Ixv, Ixxv, 162; Celebration 
of Charts, Ixvi ff., 169; Challenge 
at Tilt, Ixvi ff., Ixxi, 171 ; Christ 
mas, his Masque, xviii ; Cynthia's 
Revels, xix, xx, Ixxviii ; Devil is 
an Ass, its presentation, xvii f . ; 
sources, xli, xlv ff. ; minor 
sources, liii ; construction, xlii, 
xlv ; diction, xliv f . ; as histori 
cal document, xliv; influence, 
Ixxiv ff . ; Every Man in, Ivii, Ixv ; 
Every Man out, xix, xx, Ivii; 
Expostulation with Inigo Jones, 
xxxix ; Fox, xx, xlix, Ixv ; Gip 
sies Metamorphosed, Ixvii ff., 171 ; 
Golden Age Restored, xvii ; Love 
Restored, xxvi ; Magnetic Lady, 
xxi, Iv, Ixxvi i ; Masque of Beauty, 
Ixvii ; Masque of Queens, Ixiv f ., 
New Inn, xxi ; On the Town's 
Honest Man, xl ; Poetaster, xix, 
xx, Ixv f ., Ixxvii ; Sad Shepherd, 
xxvi, Ixiv f . ; Satyr, xxvi ; Se- 
janus, xix ; Silent Woman, xlix, 
Ixxvii; Staple of News, xxi, xl, 
Ixv; Underwoods 32, 196; Un 
derwoods 36, Ixvi ff., 170; Un 
derwoods 62, liii, 184; Under 
woods 64, Ixx. 
Justice Hall, 208. 

Kentish Town, 128. 
Kind, 161. 
King's Men, 123. 
Kissing, 191. 

Lac Virginis, 193. 

Lade, 148. 

Lading, 148, 155. 

Lancashire, witches, Ixiii, 129; the 

seven of, 203. 
Languages, possessed person speaks, 

li, 211. 
Latinisms, 189. 



Law terms, 200. 

Ledger, 207. 

Lincoln, Earl of, Ix. 

Lincolnshire, draining fens of, 

lix ff. ; Ixxiii. 

Lincoln's Inn, walks of, 153. 
London Bridge, 134. 
Longing wife, 145. 
Looking glasses, 168. 
Loo masks, 161-2. 
Love philtres, 208. 
Low Countries, 181. 
Lucian, Lucius, sive Asinus, 155. 
Lupton, Donald, London and the 

Countrey Carbonadoed, Iv. 
Lusty Juventus, 130. 

Machiavelli, Belfagor, xxix, xxxiv, 

xlix, Ixxiv. 
Mad-dame, 191. 
Major (mayor), 201. 
Malone, 165. 

Man and kind (human nature), 161. 
Maria, Infanta of Spain, xviii, 191. 
Marquesse Muja, 196. 
Marston, Dutch Courtezan, Ixix. 
Martial, Epigrams, liii, 173. 
Masks, 161. 
Massinger, criticism of Jonson, 

188-9 ! Guardian, Ivi ; Maid of 

Honor, Ivi. 
Master of Dependencies, xliii, Ivi, 


Meath, 139. 
Merecraft, identified as Mompes- 

son, Ixxii. 

Mermaid tavern, 180. 
Merry Devil of Edmonton, xxvii, 


Middlesex jury, 129. 
Middleton, and witchcraft, Ixiv. 
Middling gossip, 156. 
Migniard, 149. 
Military enthusiasm in 1614, 177-8. 

Milking he-goats, 202. 

Mint, 182. 

Mompesson, Sir Giles, Ixxii f. 

Monieman identified with Popham, 


Monkey as pet, 164. 
Monopolies, Iviii ff. 
Monsters, 149. 
Moon, 199. 

Morality-plays, xxii, xxxiv, etc. 
Motion (puppet-show), 156. 
Mouse in witchcraft, li. 
Much good do you, 185. 
Muscatell, 160. 
Muscovy glass, 126. 
Mystery-plays, xxii, xxxiv. 

Nails of devil unpared, 207. 

Nature, play of, xxii. 

Newcastle, Earl of, xiii, 147. 

Newgate, 125, 207. 

New-nothing, 136-7. 

Niaise, 150. 

Noble House, Ixxiv. 

Norfolk, Coke a squire of, Ixx. 

Northumberland, witches in. 129. 

Norwich, boy of, 205. 

Nupson, 163. 

Obarni, 139. 

Order of words with negative, 150. 

Overbury Case, xviii, Ixx ff., 141-3, 

Overdo, Adam, liii. 

Pace of gentleman usher, 198. 

Paint (blush), 168. 

Painters, see Blackfriars. 

Pallafreno, xlvii. 

Pan, 159. 

Pancridge, Earl of, 159. 

Paracelsus, Ixiv. 

Parchment, 144. 

Parliament makes remonstrance, lix. 

Patentee, Ix. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Patterns, 134. 

Peace, with my master's, 163. 

Pentacle, 144. 

Penthouse, 130. 

Perfumes, 194-5- 

Periapt, 144. 

Persius, Sat., 154. 

Petticoat Lane, 132. 

Phrenitis, 211. 

Physic, ladies taking, 199. 

Picardill, 164. 

Piece, 147. 

Pieced, 190. 

Pimlico, 184, 196. 

Pinnace, 152. 

Pins, pricking with, li, 208. 

Plautus, xlii, liii; Aulularia, xlviii, 

Ixxv, 162; Captivi, 189; Casina, 

xlix; Epidicus, 187; Miles Glori- 

osus, xlviii. 
Playbill, 148. 
Play-time, 188. 

Plutarch, Lives, 177; Moralia, 191. 
Plutarchus, xliv; identified as 

Howes, Ixxiii. 
Pope, 150, 167. 
Popham, Sir John, Ix, Ixxiii. 
Popular legend, xxvi. 
Posies on trenchers, 126. 
Possibility, in, 200. 
Posture book, 178. 
Potentia, in, 204. 
Poultry, see Compters. 
Pounds, see Compters. 
Projector, Hi, Ix, Ixxii. 
Provedor, 187. 
Proverbs, 145, 202, 212. 
Proverb title, 123. 
Provincial, 207. 
Publish suit, 150. 
Pug, xxvi, etc. 
Pumps, 194. 
Punch and Judy, xxv. 
Punning, 147. 

Purbeck, Lady, Ixvii, Ixx. 
Purchase, 187. 
Puritans, 184-5, 2I O. 
Purse, 158. 

Quintilian, 149. 

Raleigh, Sir Walter, Ixiii, son of, 


Ramsey, monastery at, Ix. 
Randolph, Muse's Looking Glass, 


Rapier, Iv. 
Raven's wings, 144. 
Relative omitted, 147, 210. 
Remigius, Ixiv. 
Rerum natura, 177. 
Resolved, 174. 
Respublica, xxxvi. 
Ribibe, 128. 
Richard III., 165. 
Riche, Barnaby, Riche his Fare-well 

to Militarie Profession, xxxi. 
Richmond, Lodowick, Earl of, Ixxiv. 
Rings, spirits in, 126; as charms, 


Roaring Boys, Ivi, 181. 
Roaring manner, 181. 
Robin Goodfellow, xxvi ff. ; xxxiii. 
Robinson, Richard, 175. 
Roses, ass eats, 155. 
Roses in shoes, 146, 179. 
Round Robbin, 129. 
Rug, 201-2. 
Rushes, 152. 

St. George's tide, 183. 

St. Giles, Cripplesgate, 201. 

St. Katherine's, 133. 

St. Paul's Churchyard, 124; steeple, 

131 ; walk, 150. 
St. Pulchar's, 211. 
Saints' legends, xxvii. 
Salt, soul instead of, 153. 



Sand, ropes of, 139, 202. 

Saraband, 196-7. 

Satire, specific objects of, liv; per 
sonal, Ixv. 

Satirical plot, xli f. 

Saviolo, Iv. 

Savory, 143. 

Scarfe, 178. 

Scarlet, 192. 

Schlegel, 123. 

Scot, Reginald, Discovery, xxviii, 

Servant, 191. 

Servant's wages, 147. 

Sessions, quarter, 206. 

Shakespeare and Jonson, 165 ; and 
witchcraft, Ixiv; historical plays, 
165 ff. ; Midsummer Night's 
Dream, xxvi. 

Sharks, 182. 

Sheriff's dinner, 136. 

Ship, woman compared to a, 152, 

Shirt, into the, 148. 

Shoot, the bridge, 134; eyes, 174. 

Shoreditch, 132 ; Duke of, 200. 

Sign of the zodiac, 154. 

Sister-swelling breasts, 172. 

Smock allies, 132. 

Soda, 192. 

Soldered friendship, 190. 

Somers, William, 1 f . ; 203. 

Somerset, Earl of, Ixx. 

Soon at night, 141. 

Souse, 200. 

Sou't, 200. 

Sow bewitched, 127. 

Spanish fashions, xviii ; leather, 194 ; 
needle, 131 ; terms, 191. 

Spenser, see Despenser. 

Spiced conscience, 163. 

Spit, hot, as charm, 128. 

Stage, displaying clothes on, 151 ; 
stools on, 125. 

Standard in Cheap, 131. 

Starch, yellow, 138; and the devil, 


State abuses, xliv. 
Statutes merchant and staple, 176. 
Steeple, 212. 
Stockings, 140. 
Stoter (Pstorer), 181. 
Strand, 135. 
Strange woman, 169. 
Streets, narrow, 169. 
Subjunctive, 148. 
Subtill, 126. 
Suburbs, 132. 

Suckling, Sir John, Ixxvi ; 173. 
Swinburne, criticism of Devil is an 

Ass, Ixxviii. 

Take forth, 134. 

Take in, 184. 

Tall (table) board, 199. 

Taylor, John, Ixii. 

Teeth guard the tongue, 191. 

Ten in the hundred, 183. 

Theatre, leaving, 188; women fre 
quent, 151. 

Thorn, o' Bet'lem, 203. 

Thumb-ring, 126. 

Time drunk and sleeping, 206. 

Tissue, 139. 

Title of play displayed, 125. 

Tobacco, 139, 210; devil takes, 209; 
spelling of, 210. 

Tooth-picks, 190, 201. 

Too-too, 186. 

Torned, 173. 

Totnam, 127. 

Train bands, 177. 

Treasure, hidden, 149. 

Turn (sour), 174. 

Turner, Mrs. Anne, Ixiii, 141. 

Tyburn, 201 ; procession to, 207. 

Umbrella, 195. 


The Diuell is an Asse 

Unities, xlii f. 

Upton, Rev. John, Critical Observa 
tions, xxi. 

Vacation, long, 177. 

Vanity (in morality-plays), 130. 

Vapors, 182. 

Velvet, 135, 181. 

Venice, 194. 

Vennor, 135. 

Via, 158. 

Vice, origin of, xxxiv; rides the 
devil, xxiv, 207; history of, 
xxxiv f . ; degeneration, xxxv ; 
chief roles, xxxv; in interludes, 
xxxv; term applied to evil char 
acter, xxxvi; Jonson's use of, 
xxxvii ff. ; costume, xxxviii ; 
identical with fool, xxxv, xxxvi ; 
xxxix f. ; etymology of the word, 

Villiers, George, Duke of Bucking 
ham, Ixxii, Ixxiv. 
Vintry, 135. 

Virgilius legend, jcxvii. 
Virgin's milk, 193. 

Waist and waste, 199. 
Wanion, 208. 

Wapull, The Tide tarrieth for No 
Man, xxxvi. 

Ward, A. W., criticism of Devil is 

an Ass, Ixxviii. 
Ware, 212. 

Webster, Devil's Law Case, 167, 179, 
- 187. 

Wedlock, 150. 
Westminster Hall, 135. 
Whalley, xv. 
Wharton, Marquis of, translation 

of Novella of Belfagor, xxxi. 
While (until), 146. 
Whitechapel, 133. 
Whore, money a, 157. 
Wicked, 198. 
Wilson, John, Belphegor, Ixxiv; 

Cheats, Ixxiv; Projectors, Ixii, 

Ixxv, 162. 

Wily Beguiled, xxvi. 
Wisdom, keep warm your, 148. 
Witchcraft, Ixii f . ; symptoms of, 

xlix; Acts against, Ixiii, 145; 

Jonson's attitude towards, Ixiii; 

treatment in other plays, Ixiv f. 
Wittipol, xlii; identified as Jonson, 


Woodcock, 158. 
Woodstock, Thomas of, 165. 
Wood Street, see Compters. 
Woolsack, 134. 
Wusse, 151. 

Yellow starch, see Starch. 
Yoking foxes, 202. 


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Jonson, Ben 

The devil is an ass