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Som. A good moral made plain by history.
Saw. E'en when you will, children.—[Cuddy mounts
[Aside. All. Why, what mean you, father Sawgut ?
Cud. Why, what would you have him do ? you hear his fiddle is speechless.
Saw. I'll lay mine ear to my instrument, that my poor fiddle is bewitched. I play'd The Flowers in May e'en now, as sweet as a violet; now 't will not go against the hair.
Cud. Let me see, father Sawgut ;-(takes the fiddle.]
Sir Ar. Ha! flat murderers ?
1 Among the properties of our ald stage was "a roobe for to goe in. visabel.” Whatever it was, it operated as a conventional hint to our easy ancestors not to see the person who wore it.-Whether the urchin who played Torn had any signal of this kind can hardly be told; but he frequently runs in and out, and bustles among the dramatis persons without being discovered by them. In the present case, however, he was probably concealed from all but Puddy by the long trappings of the kobby-horse. -GIFFORD.
War. And struck my mirth down flat.-Murderers ?
Con. The accusation 's flat against you, gentlemen. Sir, you may be satisfied with this. [Shows his warrant. I hope you'll quietly obey my power: 'T will make your cause the fairer.
Both. Oh, with all our hearts, sir.
Cud. There's my rival taken up for hangman's meat; Tom told me he was about a piece of villany. Mates and morris-men, you see here's no longer piping, no longer dancing; this news of murder has slain the morris. You that go the foot-way, fare ye well; I am for a gallop. Come, ningle. -¿Canters off with the hobby, and Dog.)
Saw. [Strikes his fiddle, which sounds as before.] Ay? nay, an my fiddle be come to himself again, I
I think the Devil has been abroad among us to-day; I'll keep thee out of thy fit now, if I can.
[Exit with the morris-dancers.
War. Oh, most willingly, sir,
Som. Mine stands so upright to the middle zone, It takes no shadow to't, it goes alone. · [Exeunt.
ACT IV. SCENE I.
Edmonton.—The Street. Enter Old Banks, and several Countrymen. Banks. My horse this morning runs most piteously of the glanders, whose nose yesternight was as clean
as any man's here now coming from the barber's; and this, I'll take my death upon’t, is long of this jadish witch, mother Sawyer. Enter W. Hamluc, with thatch and a lighted link. Ham. Burn the witch, the witch, the witch, the
witch! All. What has 't got there?
Ham. A handful of thatch, pluck'd off a hovel of hers; and they say when it is burning, if she be a witch, she 'll come running in.
Banks. Fire it, fire it; I'll stand between thee and home, for any danger. [Ham. sets fire to the thatch,
Enter Mother SAWYER, running. Saw. Diseases, plagues, the curse of an old woman Follow and fall upon you!
All. Are you come, you old trot?
1 Coun. This thatch is as good as a jury to prove she is a witch. All. Out, witeh! beat her, kick her, set fire on
her. Saw. Shall I be murdered by a bed of serpents ? Help, help!
Enter Sir ARTHUR CLARINGTON, and a JUSTICE. All. Hang her, beat her, kill her! Just. How now! forbear this violence. Saw. A crew of villains, a knot of bloody hang
men, Set to torment me, I know not why.
Just. Alas, neighbour Banks, are you a ringleader in mischief? fy, to abuse an aged woman!
Banks. Woman! a she-hellcat, a witch! To prove her one, we no sooner set fire on the thatch of her house, but in she came running, as if the Devil had sent her in a barrel of gunpowder.
Just. Come, come; firing her thatch?, ridiculous ! Take heed, sirs, what you do; unless your proofs
Come better arm'd, instead of turning her
All. Fools ?
Banks. Pray, master Justice what-do-you-call-em, hear me but in one thing. This grumbling devil owes me, I know, no good-will ever since I fell out with her.
Saw. And brak'st my back with beating' me.
Just. Go, go; pray vex her not; she is a subject,
[Exeunt Banks and Countrymen. Just. Here's none now, mother Sawyer, but this
Saw. I am none.
Saw. I am none.
1 The consequences of this beating to poor Banks were of too ludicrous a nature to be entirely omitted, though a few alterations will be necessary to make them available even in a note.
Banks. So, sir, ever since, having a dun cow tied up in my back-yard, let me go thither, or but cast mine eye at her, and if I should be hang'd, I cannot choose, though it be ten times in an hour, but run to the cow, and, taking up her tail, kiss (saving your worship’s reverence) my cow behind, that the whole town of Edmonton has been ready to split itself with laughing me to scorn.
sust. And this is long of her?
Banks. Who the devil else ? for is any man such an ass to be such a baby, if he were not bewitch'd ?
Sir Ar. And you, to be revenged,
Saw. Keep thine own from him.
Just. Know whom you speak to.
Men in gay
Sir Ar. Go, go;
Saw. Ha, ha!
Saw. At my name,
ear? Sir Ar. Pray, sir, give way; and let her tongue gallop on.
Saw. A witch! who is not ? Hold not that universal name in scorn then. What are your painted things in princes courts, That, by enchantments, can whole lordships change To trunks of rich attire; turn ploughs and teams To Flanders mares and coaches; and huge trains Of servitors, to a French butterfly? Are-not-these witches ? Have you not city wives too, who can turn, Their husbands' wares, whole standing shops of