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Gargantua and Pantagruel, Book I. by Francois Rabelais

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decreed amongst them. At the same hour departed the good man Gallet, and
having passed the ford, asked at the miller that dwelt there in what
condition Picrochole was: who answered him that his soldiers had left him
neither cock nor hen, that they were retired and shut up into the rock
Clermond, and that he would not advise him to go any further for fear of
the scouts, because they were enormously furious. Which he easily
believed, and therefore lodged that night with the miller.

The next morning he went with a trumpeter to the gate of the castle, and
required the guards he might be admitted to speak with the king of somewhat
that concerned him. These words being told unto the king, he would by no
means consent that they should open the gate; but, getting upon the top of
the bulwark, said unto the ambassador, What is the news, what have you to
say? Then the ambassador began to speak as followeth.

Chapter 1.XXXI.

The speech made by Gallet to Picrochole.

There cannot arise amongst men a juster cause of grief than when they
receive hurt and damage where they may justly expect for favour and good
will; and not without cause, though without reason, have many, after they
had fallen into such a calamitous accident, esteemed this indignity less
supportable than the loss of their own lives, in such sort that, if they
have not been able by force of arms nor any other means, by reach of wit or
subtlety, to stop them in their course and restrain their fury, they have
fallen into desperation, and utterly deprived themselves of this light. It
is therefore no wonder if King Grangousier, my master, be full of high
displeasure and much disquieted in mind upon thy outrageous and hostile
coming; but truly it would be a marvel if he were not sensible of and moved
with the incomparable abuses and injuries perpetrated by thee and thine
upon those of his country, towards whom there hath been no example of
inhumanity omitted. Which in itself is to him so grievous, for the cordial
affection wherewith he hath always cherished his subjects, that more it
cannot be to any mortal man; yet in this, above human apprehension, is it
to him the more grievous that these wrongs and sad offences have been
committed by thee and thine, who, time out of mind, from all antiquity,
thou and thy predecessors have been in a continual league and amity with
him and all his ancestors; which, even until this time, you have as sacred
together inviolably preserved, kept, and entertained, so well, that not he
and his only, but the very barbarous nations of the Poictevins, Bretons,
Manceaux, and those that dwell beyond the isles of the Canaries, and that
of Isabella, have thought it as easy to pull down the firmament, and to set
up the depths above the clouds, as to make a breach in your alliance; and
have been so afraid of it in their enterprises that they have never dared
to provoke, incense, or endamage the one for fear of the other. Nay, which
is more, this sacred league hath so filled the world, that there are few
nations at this day inhabiting throughout all the continent and isles of
the ocean, who have not ambitiously aspired to be received into it, upon
your own covenants and conditions, holding your joint confederacy in as
high esteem as their own territories and dominions, in such sort, that from
the memory of man there hath not been either prince or league so wild and
proud that durst have offered to invade, I say not your countries, but not
so much as those of your confederates. And if, by rash and heady counsel,
they have attempted any new design against them, as soon as they heard the
name and title of your alliance, they have suddenly desisted from their
enterprises. What rage and madness, therefore, doth now incite thee, all
old alliance infringed, all amity trod under foot, and all right violated,
thus in a hostile manner to invade his country, without having been by him
or his in anything prejudiced, wronged, or provoked? Where is faith?
Where is law? Where is reason? Where is humanity? Where is the fear of
God? Dost thou think that these atrocious abuses are hidden from the
eternal spirit and the supreme God who is the just rewarder of all our
undertakings? If thou so think, thou deceivest thyself; for all things
shall come to pass as in his incomprehensible judgment he hath appointed.
Is it thy fatal destiny, or influences of the stars, that would put an end
to thy so long enjoyed ease and rest? For that all things have their end
and period, so as that, when they are come to the superlative point of
their greatest height, they are in a trice tumbled down again, as not being
able to abide long in that state. This is the conclusion and end of those
who cannot by reason and temperance moderate their fortunes and
prosperities. But if it be predestinated that thy happiness and ease must
now come to an end, must it needs be by wronging my king,--him by whom thou
wert established? If thy house must come to ruin, should it therefore in
its fall crush the heels of him that set it up? The matter is so
unreasonable, and so dissonant from common sense, that hardly can it be
conceived by human understanding, and altogether incredible unto strangers,
till by the certain and undoubted effects thereof it be made apparent that
nothing is either sacred or holy to those who, having emancipated
themselves from God and reason, do merely follow the perverse affections of
their own depraved nature. If any wrong had been done by us to thy
subjects and dominions--if we had favoured thy ill-willers--if we had not
assisted thee in thy need--if thy name and reputation had been wounded by
us--or, to speak more truly, if the calumniating spirit, tempting to induce
thee to evil, had, by false illusions and deceitful fantasies, put into thy
conceit the impression of a thought that we had done unto thee anything
unworthy of our ancient correspondence and friendship, thou oughtest first
to have inquired out the truth, and afterwards by a seasonable warning to
admonish us thereof; and we should have so satisfied thee, according to
thine own heart's desire, that thou shouldst have had occasion to be
contented. But, O eternal God, what is thy enterprise? Wouldst thou, like
a perfidious tyrant, thus spoil and lay waste my master's kingdom? Hast
thou found him so silly and blockish, that he would not--or so destitute of
men and money, of counsel and skill in military discipline, that he cannot
withstand thy unjust invasion? March hence presently, and to-morrow, some
time of the day, retreat unto thine own country, without doing any kind of
violence or disorderly act by the way; and pay withal a thousand besans of
gold (which, in English money, amounteth to five thousand pounds), for
reparation of the damages thou hast done in this country. Half thou shalt
pay to-morrow, and the other half at the ides of May next coming, leaving
with us in the mean time, for hostages, the Dukes of Turnbank, Lowbuttock,
and Smalltrash, together with the Prince of Itches and Viscount of
Snatchbit (Tournemoule, Bas-de-fesses, Menuail, Gratelles, Morpiaille.).

Chapter 1.XXXII.

How Grangousier, to buy peace, caused the cakes to be restored.

With that the good man Gallet held his peace, but Picrochole to all his
discourse answered nothing but Come and fetch them, come and fetch them,
--they have ballocks fair and soft,--they will knead and provide some cakes
for you. Then returned he to Grangousier, whom he found upon his knees
bareheaded, crouching in a little corner of his cabinet, and humbly praying
unto God that he would vouchsafe to assuage the choler of Picrochole, and
bring him to the rule of reason without proceeding by force. When the good
man came back, he asked him, Ha, my friend, what news do you bring me?
There is neither hope nor remedy, said Gallet; the man is quite out of his
wits, and forsaken of God. Yea, but, said Grangousier, my friend, what
cause doth he pretend for his outrages? He did not show me any cause at
all, said Gallet, only that in a great anger he spoke some words of cakes.
I cannot tell if they have done any wrong to his cake-bakers. I will know,
said Grangousier, the matter thoroughly, before I resolve any more upon
what is to be done. Then sent he to learn concerning that business, and
found by true information that his men had taken violently some cakes from
Picrochole's people, and that Marquet's head was broken with a slacky or
short cudgel; that, nevertheless, all was well paid, and that the said
Marquet had first hurt Forgier with a stroke of his whip athwart the legs.
And it seemed good to his whole council, that he should defend himself with
all his might. Notwithstanding all this, said Grangousier, seeing the
question is but about a few cakes, I will labour to content him; for I am
very unwilling to wage war against him. He inquired then what quantity of
cakes they had taken away, and understanding that it was but some four or
five dozen, he commanded five cartloads of them to be baked that same
night; and that there should be one full of cakes made with fine butter,
fine yolks of eggs, fine saffron, and fine spice, to be bestowed upon
Marquet, unto whom likewise he directed to be given seven hundred thousand
and three Philips (that is, at three shillings the piece, one hundred five
thousand pounds and nine shillings of English money), for reparation of his
losses and hindrances, and for satisfaction of the chirurgeon that had
dressed his wound; and furthermore settled upon him and his for ever in
freehold the apple-orchard called La Pomardiere. For the conveyance and
passing of all which was sent Gallet, who by the way as they went made them
gather near the willow-trees great store of boughs, canes, and reeds,
wherewith all the carriers were enjoined to garnish and deck their carts,
and each of them to carry one in his hand, as himself likewise did, thereby
to give all men to understand that they demanded but peace, and that they
came to buy it.

Being come to the gate, they required to speak with Picrochole from
Grangousier. Picrochole would not so much as let them in, nor go to speak
with them, but sent them word that he was busy, and that they should
deliver their mind to Captain Touquedillon, who was then planting a piece
of ordnance upon the wall. Then said the good man unto him, My lord, to
ease you of all this labour, and to take away all excuses why you may not
return unto our former alliance, we do here presently restore unto you the
cakes upon which the quarrel arose. Five dozen did our people take away:
they were well paid for: we love peace so well that we restore unto you
five cartloads, of which this cart shall be for Marquet, who doth most
complain. Besides, to content him entirely, here are seven hundred
thousand and three Philips, which I deliver to him, and, for the losses he
may pretend to have sustained, I resign for ever the farm of the
Pomardiere, to be possessed in fee-simple by him and his for ever, without
the payment of any duty, or acknowledgement of homage, fealty, fine, or
service whatsoever, and here is the tenour of the deed. And, for God's
sake, let us live henceforward in peace, and withdraw yourselves merrily
into your own country from within this place, unto which you have no right
at all, as yourselves must needs confess, and let us be good friends as
before. Touquedillon related all this to Picrochole, and more and more
exasperated his courage, saying to him, These clowns are afraid to some
purpose. By G--, Grangousier conskites himself for fear, the poor drinker.
He is not skilled in warfare, nor hath he any stomach for it. He knows
better how to empty the flagons,--that is his art. I am of opinion that it
is fit we send back the carts and the money, and, for the rest, that very
speedily we fortify ourselves here, then prosecute our fortune. But what!
Do they think to have to do with a ninnywhoop, to feed you thus with cakes?
You may see what it is. The good usage and great familiarity which you
have had with them heretofore hath made you contemptible in their eyes.
Anoint a villain, he will prick you: prick a villain, and he will anoint
you (Ungentem pungit, pungentem rusticus ungit.).

Sa, sa, sa, said Picrochole, by St. James you have given a true character
of them. One thing I will advise you, said Touquedillon. We are here but
badly victualled, and furnished with mouth-harness very slenderly. If
Grangousier should come to besiege us, I would go presently, and pluck out
of all your soldiers' heads and mine own all the teeth, except three to
each of us, and with them alone we should make an end of our provision but
too soon. We shall have, said Picrochole, but too much sustenance and
feeding-stuff. Came we hither to eat or to fight? To fight, indeed, said
Touquedillon; yet from the paunch comes the dance, and where famine rules
force is exiled. Leave off your prating, said Picrochole, and forthwith
seize upon what they have brought. Then took they money and cakes, oxen
and carts, and sent them away without speaking one word, only that they
would come no more so near, for a reason that they would give them the
morrow after. Thus, without doing anything, returned they to Grangousier,
and related the whole matter unto him, subjoining that there was no hope
left to draw them to peace but by sharp and fierce wars.

Chapter 1.XXXIII.

How some statesmen of Picrochole, by hairbrained counsel, put him in
extreme danger.

The carts being unloaded, and the money and cakes secured, there came
before Picrochole the Duke of Smalltrash, the Earl Swashbuckler, and
Captain Dirt-tail (Menuail, Spadassin, Merdaille.), who said unto him, Sir,
this day we make you the happiest, the most warlike and chivalrous prince
that ever was since the death of Alexander of Macedonia. Be covered, be
covered, said Picrochole. Gramercy, said they, we do but our duty. The
manner is thus. You shall leave some captain here to have the charge of
this garrison, with a party competent for keeping of the place, which,
besides its natural strength, is made stronger by the rampiers and
fortresses of your devising. Your army you are to divide into two parts,
as you know very well how to do. One part thereof shall fall upon
Grangousier and his forces. By it shall he be easily at the very first
shock routed, and then shall you get money by heaps, for the clown hath
store of ready coin. Clown we call him, because a noble and generous
prince hath never a penny, and that to hoard up treasure is but a clownish
trick. The other part of the army, in the meantime, shall draw towards
Onys, Xaintonge, Angomois, and Gascony. Then march to Perigot, Medoc, and
Elanes, taking wherever you come, without resistance, towns, castles, and
forts; afterwards to Bayonne, St. John de Luc, to Fontarabia, where you
shall seize upon all the ships, and coasting along Galicia and Portugal,
shall pillage all the maritime places, even unto Lisbon, where you shall be
supplied with all necessaries befitting a conqueror. By copsody, Spain
will yield, for they are but a race of loobies. Then are you to pass by
the Straits of Gibraltar, where you shall erect two pillars more stately
than those of Hercules, to the perpetual memory of your name, and the
narrow entrance there shall be called the Picrocholinal sea.

Having passed the Picrocholinal sea, behold, Barbarossa yields himself your
slave. I will, said Picrochole, give him fair quarter and spare his life.
Yea, said they, so that he be content to be christened. And you shall
conquer the kingdoms of Tunis, of Hippo, Argier, Bomine (Bona), Corone,
yea, all Barbary. Furthermore, you shall take into your hands Majorca,
Minorca, Sardinia, Corsica, with the other islands of the Ligustic and
Balearian seas. Going alongst on the left hand, you shall rule all Gallia
Narbonensis, Provence, the Allobrogians, Genoa, Florence, Lucca, and then
God b'w'ye, Rome. (Our poor Monsieur the Pope dies now for fear.) By my
faith, said Picrochole, I will not then kiss his pantoufle.

Italy being thus taken, behold Naples, Calabria, Apulia, and Sicily, all
ransacked, and Malta too. I wish the pleasant Knights of the Rhodes
heretofore would but come to resist you, that we might see their urine. I
would, said Picrochole, very willingly go to Loretto. No, no, said they,
that shall be at our return. From thence we will sail eastwards, and take
Candia, Cyprus, Rhodes, and the Cyclade Islands, and set upon (the) Morea.
It is ours, by St. Trenian. The Lord preserve Jerusalem; for the great
Soldan is not comparable to you in power. I will then, said he, cause
Solomon's temple to be built. No, said they, not yet, have a little
patience, stay awhile, be never too sudden in your enterprises. Can you
tell what Octavian Augustus said? Festina lente. It is requisite that you
first have the Lesser Asia, Caria, Lycia, Pamphilia, Cilicia, Lydia,
Phrygia, Mysia, Bithynia, Carazia, Satalia, Samagaria, Castamena, Luga,
Savasta, even unto Euphrates. Shall we see, said Picrochole, Babylon and
Mount Sinai? There is no need, said they, at this time. Have we not
hurried up and down, travelled and toiled enough, in having transfretted
and passed over the Hircanian sea, marched alongst the two Armenias and the
three Arabias? Ay, by my faith, said he, we have played the fools, and are
undone. Ha, poor souls! What's the matter? said they. What shall we
have, said he, to drink in these deserts? For Julian Augustus with his
whole army died there for thirst, as they say. We have already, said they,
given order for that. In the Syriac sea you have nine thousand and
fourteen great ships laden with the best wines in the world. They arrived
at Port Joppa. There they found two-and-twenty thousand camels and sixteen
hundred elephants, which you shall have taken at one hunting about
Sigelmes, when you entered into Lybia; and, besides this, you had all the
Mecca caravan. Did not they furnish you sufficiently with wine? Yes, but,
said he, we did not drink it fresh. By the virtue, said they, not of a
fish, a valiant man, a conqueror, who pretends and aspires to the monarchy
of the world, cannot always have his ease. God be thanked that you and
your men are come safe and sound unto the banks of the river Tigris. But,
said he, what doth that part of our army in the meantime which overthrows
that unworthy swillpot Grangousier? They are not idle, said they. We
shall meet with them by-and-by. They shall have won you Brittany,
Normandy, Flanders, Hainault, Brabant, Artois, Holland, Zealand; they have
passed the Rhine over the bellies of the Switzers and lansquenets, and a
party of these hath subdued Luxembourg, Lorraine, Champagne, and Savoy,
even to Lyons, in which place they have met with your forces returning from
the naval conquests of the Mediterranean sea; and have rallied again in
Bohemia, after they had plundered and sacked Suevia, Wittemberg, Bavaria,
Austria, Moravia, and Styria. Then they set fiercely together upon Lubeck,
Norway, Swedeland, Rie, Denmark, Gitland, Greenland, the Sterlins, even
unto the frozen sea. This done, they conquered the Isles of Orkney and
subdued Scotland, England, and Ireland. From thence sailing through the
sandy sea and by the Sarmates, they have vanquished and overcome Prussia,
Poland, Lithuania, Russia, Wallachia, Transylvania, Hungary, Bulgaria,
Turkeyland, and are now at Constantinople. Come, said Picrochole, let us
go join with them quickly, for I will be Emperor of Trebizond also. Shall
we not kill all these dogs, Turks and Mahometans? What a devil should we
do else? said they. And you shall give their goods and lands to such as
shall have served you honestly. Reason, said he, will have it so, that is
but just. I give unto you the Caramania, Suria, and all the Palestine.
Ha, sir, said they, it is out of your goodness; gramercy, we thank you.
God grant you may always prosper. There was there present at that time an
old gentleman well experienced in the wars, a stern soldier, and who had
been in many great hazards, named Echephron, who, hearing this discourse,
said, I do greatly doubt that all this enterprise will be like the tale or
interlude of the pitcher full of milk wherewith a shoemaker made himself
rich in conceit; but, when the pitcher was broken, he had not whereupon to
dine. What do you pretend by these large conquests? What shall be the end
of so many labours and crosses? Thus it shall be, said Picrochole, that
when we are returned we shall sit down, rest, and be merry. But, said
Echephron, if by chance you should never come back, for the voyage is long
and dangerous, were it not better for us to take our rest now, than
unnecessarily to expose ourselves to so many dangers? O, said
Swashbuckler, by G--, here is a good dotard; come, let us go hide ourselves
in the corner of a chimney, and there spend the whole time of our life
amongst ladies, in threading of pearls, or spinning, like Sardanapalus. He
that nothing ventures hath neither horse nor mule, says Solomon. He who
adventureth too much, said Echephron, loseth both horse and mule, answered
Malchon. Enough, said Picrochole, go forward. I fear nothing but that
these devilish legions of Grangousier, whilst we are in Mesopotamia, will
come on our backs and charge up our rear. What course shall we then take?
What shall be our remedy? A very good one, said Dirt-tail; a pretty little
commission, which you must send unto the Muscovites, shall bring you into
the field in an instant four hundred and fifty thousand choice men of war.
Oh that you would but make me your lieutenant-general, I should for the
lightest faults of any inflict great punishments. I fret, I charge, I
strike, I take, I kill, I slay, I play the devil. On, on, said Picrochole,
make haste, my lads, and let him that loves me follow me.

Chapter 1.XXXIV.

How Gargantua left the city of Paris to succour his country, and how
Gymnast encountered with the enemy.

In this same very hour Gargantua, who was gone out of Paris as soon as he
had read his father's letters, coming upon his great mare, had already
passed the Nunnery-bridge, himself, Ponocrates, Gymnast, and Eudemon, who
all three, the better to enable them to go along with him, took
post-horses. The rest of his train came after him by even journeys at a
slower pace, bringing with them all his books and philosophical instruments.
As soon as he had alighted at Parille, he was informed by a farmer of
Gouguet how Picrochole had fortified himself within the rock Clermond, and
had sent Captain Tripet with a great army to set upon the wood of Vede and
Vaugaudry, and that they had already plundered the whole country, not
leaving cock nor hen, even as far as to the winepress of Billard. These
strange and almost incredible news of the enormous abuses thus committed
over all the land, so affrighted Gargantua that he knew not what to say nor
do. But Ponocrates counselled him to go unto the Lord of Vauguyon, who at
all times had been their friend and confederate, and that by him they should
be better advised in their business. Which they did incontinently, and
found him very willing and fully resolved to assist them, and therefore was
of opinion that they should send some one of his company to scout along and
discover the country, to learn in what condition and posture the enemy was,
that they might take counsel, and proceed according to the present occasion.
Gymnast offered himself to go. Whereupon it was concluded, that for his
safety and the better expedition, he should have with him someone that knew
the ways, avenues, turnings, windings, and rivers thereabout. Then away went
he and Prelingot, the equerry or gentleman of Vauguyon's horse, who scouted
and espied as narrowly as they could upon all quarters without any fear. In
the meantime Gargantua took a little refreshment, ate somewhat himself, the
like did those who were with him, and caused to give to his mare a picotine
of oats, that is, three score and fourteen quarters and three bushels.
Gymnast and his comrade rode so long, that at last they met with the enemy's
forces, all scattered and out of order, plundering, stealing, robbing, and
pillaging all they could lay their hands on. And, as far off as they could
perceive him, they ran thronging upon the back of one another in all haste
towards him, to unload him of his money, and untruss his portmantles. Then
cried he out unto them, My masters, I am a poor devil, I desire you to spare
me. I have yet one crown left. Come, we must drink it, for it is aurum
potabile, and this horse here shall be sold to pay my welcome. Afterwards
take me for one of your own, for never yet was there any man that knew
better how to take, lard, roast, and dress, yea, by G--, to tear asunder and
devour a hen, than I that am here: and for my proficiat I drink to all good
fellows. With that he unscrewed his borracho (which was a great Dutch
leathern bottle), and without putting in his nose drank very honestly. The
maroufle rogues looked upon him, opening their throats a foot wide, and
putting out their tongues like greyhounds, in hopes to drink after him; but
Captain Tripet, in the very nick of that their expectation, came running to
him to see who it was. To him Gymnast offered his bottle, saying, Hold,
captain, drink boldly and spare not; I have been thy taster, it is wine of
La Faye Monjau. What! said Tripet, this fellow gibes and flouts us? Who
art thou? said Tripet. I am, said Gymnast, a poor devil (pauvre diable).
Ha, said Tripet, seeing thou art a poor devil, it is reason that thou
shouldst be permitted to go whithersoever thou wilt, for all poor devils
pass everywhere without toll or tax. But it is not the custom of poor
devils to be so well mounted; therefore, sir devil, come down, and let me
have your horse, and if he do not carry me well, you, master devil, must do
it: for I love a life that such a devil as you should carry me away.

Chapter 1.XXXV.

How Gymnast very souply and cunningly killed Captain Tripet and others of
Picrochole's men.

When they heard these words, some amongst them began to be afraid, and
blessed themselves with both hands, thinking indeed that he had been a
devil disguised, insomuch that one of them, named Good John, captain of the
trained bands of the country bumpkins, took his psalter out of his
codpiece, and cried out aloud, Hagios ho theos. If thou be of God, speak;
if thou be of the other spirit, avoid hence, and get thee going. Yet he
went not away. Which words being heard by all the soldiers that were
there, divers of them being a little inwardly terrified, departed from the
place. All this did Gymnast very well remark and consider, and therefore
making as if he would have alighted from off his horse, as he was poising
himself on the mounting side, he most nimbly, with his short sword by his
thigh, shifting his foot in the stirrup, performed the stirrup-leather
feat, whereby, after the inclining of his body downwards, he forthwith
launched himself aloft in the air, and placed both his feet together on the
saddle, standing upright with his back turned towards the horse's head.
Now, said he, my case goes backward. Then suddenly in the same very
posture wherein he was, he fetched a gambol upon one foot, and, turning to
the left hand, failed not to carry his body perfectly round, just into its
former stance, without missing one jot. Ha, said Tripet, I will not do
that at this time, and not without cause. Well, said Gymnast, I have
failed, I will undo this leap. Then with a marvellous strength and
agility, turning towards the right hand, he fetched another frisking gambol
as before, which done, he set his right-hand thumb upon the hind-bow of the
saddle, raised himself up, and sprung in the air, poising and upholding his
whole body upon the muscle and nerve of the said thumb, and so turned and
whirled himself about three times. At the fourth, reversing his body, and
overturning it upside down, and foreside back, without touching anything,
he brought himself betwixt the horse's two ears, springing with all his
body into the air, upon the thumb of his left hand, and in that posture,
turning like a windmill, did most actively do that trick which is called
the miller's pass. After this, clapping his right hand flat upon the
middle of the saddle, he gave himself such a jerking swing that he thereby
seated himself upon the crupper, after the manner of gentlewomen sitting on
horseback. This done, he easily passed his right leg over the saddle, and
placed himself like one that rides in croup. But, said he, it were better
for me to get into the saddle; then putting the thumbs of both hands upon
the crupper before him, and thereupon leaning himself, as upon the only
supporters of his body, he incontinently turned heels over head in the air,
and straight found himself betwixt the bow of the saddle in a good
settlement. Then with a somersault springing into the air again, he fell
to stand with both his feet close together upon the saddle, and there made
above a hundred frisks, turns, and demipommads, with his arms held out
across, and in so doing cried out aloud, I rage, I rage, devils, I am stark
mad, devils, I am mad, hold me, devils, hold me, hold, devils, hold, hold!

Whilst he was thus vaulting, the rogues in great astonishment said to one
another, By cock's death, he is a goblin or a devil thus disguised. Ab
hoste maligno libera nos, Domine, and ran away in a full flight, as if they
had been routed, looking now and then behind them, like a dog that carrieth
away a goose-wing in his mouth. Then Gymnast, spying his advantage,
alighted from his horse, drew his sword, and laid on great blows upon the
thickset and highest crested among them, and overthrew them in great heaps,
hurt, wounded, and bruised, being resisted by nobody, they thinking he had
been a starved devil, as well in regard of his wonderful feats in vaulting,
which they had seen, as for the talk Tripet had with him, calling him poor
devil. Only Tripet would have traitorously cleft his head with his
horseman's sword, or lance-knight falchion; but he was well armed, and felt
nothing of the blow but the weight of the stroke. Whereupon, turning
suddenly about, he gave Tripet a home-thrust, and upon the back of that,
whilst he was about to ward his head from a slash, he ran him in at the
breast with a hit, which at once cut his stomach, the fifth gut called the
colon, and the half of his liver, wherewith he fell to the ground, and in
falling gushed forth above four pottles of pottage, and his soul mingled
with the pottage.

This done, Gymnast withdrew himself, very wisely considering that a case of
great adventure and hazard should not be pursued unto its utmost period,
and that it becomes all cavaliers modestly to use their good fortune,
without troubling or stretching it too far. Wherefore, getting to horse,
he gave him the spur, taking the right way unto Vauguyon, and Prelinguand
with him.

Chapter 1.XXXVI.

How Gargantua demolished the castle at the ford of Vede, and how they
passed the ford.

[Illustration: How Gargantua Passed the Ford--1-36-076]

As soon as he came, he related the estate and condition wherein they had
found the enemy, and the stratagem which he alone had used against all
their multitude, affirming that they were but rascally rogues, plunderers,
thieves, and robbers, ignorant of all military discipline, and that they
might boldly set forward unto the field; it being an easy matter to fell
and strike them down like beasts. Then Gargantua mounted his great mare,
accompanied as we have said before, and finding in his way a high and great
tree, which commonly was called by the name of St. Martin's tree, because
heretofore St. Martin planted a pilgrim's staff there, which in tract of
time grew to that height and greatness, said, This is that which I lacked;
this tree shall serve me both for a staff and lance. With that he pulled
it up easily, plucked off the boughs, and trimmed it at his pleasure. In
the meantime his mare pissed to ease her belly, but it was in such
abundance that it did overflow the country seven leagues, and all the piss
of that urinal flood ran glib away towards the ford of Vede, wherewith the
water was so swollen that all the forces the enemy had there were with
great horror drowned, except some who had taken the way on the left hand
towards the hills. Gargantua, being come to the place of the wood of Vede,
was informed by Eudemon that there was some remainder of the enemy within
the castle, which to know, Gargantua cried out as loud as he was able, Are
you there, or are you not there? If you be there, be there no more; and if
you are not there, I have no more to say. But a ruffian gunner, whose
charge was to attend the portcullis over the gate, let fly a cannon-ball at
him, and hit him with that shot most furiously on the right temple of his
head, yet did him no more hurt than if he had but cast a prune or kernel of
a wine-grape at him. What is this? said Gargantua; do you throw at us
grape-kernels here? The vintage shall cost you dear; thinking indeed that
the bullet had been the kernel of a grape, or raisin-kernel.

Those who were within the castle, being till then busy at the pillage, when
they heard this noise ran to the towers and fortresses, from whence they
shot at him above nine thousand and five-and-twenty falconshot and
arquebusades, aiming all at his head, and so thick did they shoot at him
that he cried out, Ponocrates, my friend, these flies here are like to put
out mine eyes; give me a branch of those willow-trees to drive them away,
thinking that the bullets and stones shot out of the great ordnance had
been but dunflies. Ponocrates looked and saw that there were no other
flies but great shot which they had shot from the castle. Then was it that
he rushed with his great tree against the castle, and with mighty blows
overthrew both towers and fortresses, and laid all level with the ground,
by which means all that were within were slain and broken in pieces. Going
from thence, they came to the bridge at the mill, where they found all the
ford covered with dead bodies, so thick that they had choked up the mill
and stopped the current of its water, and these were those that were
destroyed in the urinal deluge of the mare. There they were at a stand,
consulting how they might pass without hindrance by these dead carcasses.
But Gymnast said, If the devils have passed there, I will pass well enough.
The devils have passed there, said Eudemon, to carry away the damned souls.
By St. Treignan! said Ponocrates, then by necessary consequence he shall
pass there. Yes, yes, said Gymnastes, or I shall stick in the way. Then
setting spurs to his horse, he passed through freely, his horse not fearing
nor being anything affrighted at the sight of the dead bodies; for he had
accustomed him, according to the doctrine of Aelian, not to fear armour,
nor the carcasses of dead men; and that not by killing men as Diomedes did
the Thracians, or as Ulysses did in throwing the corpses of his enemies at
his horse's feet, as Homer saith, but by putting a Jack-a-lent amongst his
hay, and making him go over it ordinarily when he gave him his oats. The
other three followed him very close, except Eudemon only, whose horse's
fore-right or far forefoot sank up to the knee in the paunch of a great fat
chuff who lay there upon his back drowned, and could not get it out. There
was he pestered, until Gargantua, with the end of his staff, thrust down
the rest of the villain's tripes into the water whilst the horse pulled out
his foot; and, which is a wonderful thing in hippiatry, the said horse was
thoroughly cured of a ringbone which he had in that foot by this touch of
the burst guts of that great looby.

Chapter 1.XXXVII.

How Gargantua, in combing his head, made the great cannon-balls fall out of
his hair.

Being come out of the river of Vede, they came very shortly after to
Grangousier's castle, who waited for them with great longing. At their
coming they were entertained with many congees, and cherished with
embraces. Never was seen a more joyful company, for Supplementum
Supplementi Chronicorum saith that Gargamelle died there with joy; for my
part, truly I cannot tell, neither do I care very much for her, nor for
anybody else. The truth was, that Gargantua, in shifting his clothes, and
combing his head with a comb, which was nine hundred foot long of the
Jewish cane measure, and whereof the teeth were great tusks of elephants,
whole and entire, he made fall at every rake above seven balls of bullets,
at a dozen the ball, that stuck in his hair at the razing of the castle of
the wood of Vede. Which his father Grangousier seeing, thought they had
been lice, and said unto him, What, my dear son, hast thou brought us this
far some short-winged hawks of the college of Montague? I did not mean
that thou shouldst reside there. Then answered Ponocrates, My sovereign
lord, think not that I have placed him in that lousy college which they
call Montague; I had rather have put him amongst the grave-diggers of Sanct
Innocent, so enormous is the cruelty and villainy that I have known there:
for the galley-slaves are far better used amongst the Moors and Tartars,
the murderers in the criminal dungeons, yea, the very dogs in your house,
than are the poor wretched students in the aforesaid college. And if I
were King of Paris, the devil take me if I would not set it on fire, and
burn both principal and regents, for suffering this inhumanity to be
exercised before their eyes. Then, taking up one of these bullets, he
said, These are cannon-shot, which your son Gargantua hath lately received
by the treachery of your enemies, as he was passing before the wood of

But they have been so rewarded, that they are all destroyed in the ruin of
the castle, as were the Philistines by the policy of Samson, and those whom
the tower of Silohim slew, as it is written in the thirteenth of Luke. My
opinion is, that we pursue them whilst the luck is on our side; for
occasion hath all her hair on her forehead; when she is passed, you may not
recall her,--she hath no tuft whereby you can lay hold on her, for she is
bald in the hind-part of her head, and never returneth again. Truly, said
Grangousier, it shall not be at this time; for I will make you a feast
this night, and bid you welcome.

This said, they made ready supper, and, of extraordinary besides his daily
fare, were roasted sixteen oxen, three heifers, two and thirty calves,
three score and three fat kids, four score and fifteen wethers, three
hundred farrow pigs or sheats soused in sweet wine or must, eleven score
partridges, seven hundred snipes and woodcocks, four hundred Loudun and
Cornwall capons, six thousand pullets, and as many pigeons, six hundred
crammed hens, fourteen hundred leverets, or young hares and rabbits, three
hundred and three buzzards, and one thousand and seven hundred cockerels.
For venison, they could not so suddenly come by it, only eleven wild boars,
which the Abbot of Turpenay sent, and eighteen fallow deer which the Lord
of Gramount bestowed; together with seven score pheasants, which were sent
by the Lord of Essars; and some dozens of queests, coushats, ringdoves, and
woodculvers; river-fowl, teals and awteals, bitterns, courtes, plovers,
francolins, briganders, tyrasons, young lapwings, tame ducks, shovellers,
woodlanders, herons, moorhens, criels, storks, canepetiers, oranges,
flamans, which are phaenicopters, or crimson-winged sea-fowls, terrigoles,
turkeys, arbens, coots, solan-geese, curlews, termagants, and
water-wagtails, with a great deal of cream, curds, and fresh cheese, and
store of soup, pottages, and brewis with great variety. Without doubt there
was meat enough, and it was handsomely dressed by Snapsauce, Hotchpot, and
Brayverjuice, Grangousier's cooks. Jenkin Trudgeapace and Cleanglass were
very careful to fill them drink.

Chapter 1.XXXVIII.

How Gargantua did eat up six pilgrims in a salad.

The story requireth that we relate that which happened unto six pilgrims
who came from Sebastian near to Nantes, and who for shelter that night,
being afraid of the enemy, had hid themselves in the garden upon the
chichling peas, among the cabbages and lettuces. Gargantua finding himself
somewhat dry, asked whether they could get any lettuce to make him a salad;
and hearing that there were the greatest and fairest in the country, for
they were as great as plum-trees or as walnut-trees, he would go thither
himself, and brought thence in his hand what he thought good, and withal
carried away the six pilgrims, who were in so great fear that they did not
dare to speak nor cough.

Washing them, therefore, first at the fountain, the pilgrims said one to
another softly, What shall we do? We are almost drowned here amongst these
lettuce, shall we speak? But if we speak, he will kill us for spies. And,
as they were thus deliberating what to do, Gargantua put them with the
lettuce into a platter of the house, as large as the huge tun of the White
Friars of the Cistercian order; which done, with oil, vinegar, and salt, he
ate them up, to refresh himself a little before supper, and had already
swallowed up five of the pilgrims, the sixth being in the platter, totally
hid under a lettuce, except his bourdon or staff that appeared, and nothing
else. Which Grangousier seeing, said to Gargantua, I think that is the
horn of a shell-snail, do not eat it. Why not? said Gargantua, they are
good all this month: which he no sooner said, but, drawing up the staff,
and therewith taking up the pilgrim, he ate him very well, then drank a
terrible draught of excellent white wine. The pilgrims, thus devoured,
made shift to save themselves as well as they could, by withdrawing their
bodies out of the reach of the grinders of his teeth, but could not escape
from thinking they had been put in the lowest dungeon of a prison. And
when Gargantua whiffed the great draught, they thought to have been drowned
in his mouth, and the flood of wine had almost carried them away into the
gulf of his stomach. Nevertheless, skipping with their bourdons, as St.
Michael's palmers use to do, they sheltered themselves from the danger of
that inundation under the banks of his teeth. But one of them by chance,
groping or sounding the country with his staff, to try whether they were in
safety or no, struck hard against the cleft of a hollow tooth, and hit the
mandibulary sinew or nerve of the jaw, which put Gargantua to very great
pain, so that he began to cry for the rage that he felt. To ease himself
therefore of his smarting ache, he called for his toothpicker, and rubbing
towards a young walnut-tree, where they lay skulking, unnestled you my
gentlemen pilgrims.

For he caught one by the legs, another by the scrip, another by the pocket,
another by the scarf, another by the band of the breeches, and the poor
fellow that had hurt him with the bourdon, him he hooked to him by the
codpiece, which snatch nevertheless did him a great deal of good, for it
pierced unto him a pocky botch he had in the groin, which grievously
tormented him ever since they were past Ancenis. The pilgrims, thus
dislodged, ran away athwart the plain a pretty fast pace, and the pain
ceased, even just at the time when by Eudemon he was called to supper, for
all was ready. I will go then, said he, and piss away my misfortune; which
he did do in such a copious measure, that the urine taking away the feet
from the pilgrims, they were carried along with the stream unto the bank of
a tuft of trees. Upon which, as soon as they had taken footing, and that
for their self-preservation they had run a little out of the road, they on
a sudden fell all six, except Fourniller, into a trap that had been made to
take wolves by a train, out of which, nevertheless, they escaped by the
industry of the said Fourniller, who broke all the snares and ropes. Being
gone from thence, they lay all the rest of that night in a lodge near unto
Coudray, where they were comforted in their miseries by the gracious words
of one of their company, called Sweer-to-go, who showed them that this
adventure had been foretold by the prophet David, Psalm. Quum exsurgerent
homines in nos, forte vivos deglutissent nos; when we were eaten in the
salad, with salt, oil, and vinegar. Quum irasceretur furor eorum in nos,
forsitan aqua absorbuisset nos; when he drank the great draught. Torrentem
pertransivit anima nostra; when the stream of his water carried us to the
thicket. Forsitan pertransisset anima nostra aquam intolerabilem; that is,
the water of his urine, the flood whereof, cutting our way, took our feet
from us. Benedictus Dominus qui non dedit nos in captionem dentibus eorum.
Anima nostra sicut passer erepta est de laqueo venantium; when we fell in
the trap. Laqueus contritus est, by Fourniller, et nos liberati sumus.
Adjutorium nostrum, &c.

Chapter 1.XXXIX.

How the Monk was feasted by Gargantua, and of the jovial discourse they had
at supper.

When Gargantua was set down at table, after all of them had somewhat stayed
their stomachs by a snatch or two of the first bits eaten heartily,
Grangousier began to relate the source and cause of the war raised between
him and Picrochole; and came to tell how Friar John of the Funnels had
triumphed at the defence of the close of the abbey, and extolled him for
his valour above Camillus, Scipio, Pompey, Caesar, and Themistocles. Then
Gargantua desired that he might be presently sent for, to the end that with
him they might consult of what was to be done. Whereupon, by a joint
consent, his steward went for him, and brought him along merrily, with his
staff of the cross, upon Grangousier's mule. When he was come, a thousand
huggings, a thousand embracements, a thousand good days were given. Ha,
Friar John, my friend Friar John, my brave cousin Friar John from the
devil! Let me clip thee, my heart, about the neck; to me an armful. I
must grip thee, my ballock, till thy back crack with it. Come, my cod, let
me coll thee till I kill thee. And Friar John, the gladdest man in the
world, never was man made welcomer, never was any more courteously and
graciously received than Friar John. Come, come, said Gargantua, a stool
here close by me at this end. I am content, said the monk, seeing you will
have it so. Some water, page; fill, my boy, fill; it is to refresh my
liver. Give me some, child, to gargle my throat withal. Deposita cappa,
said Gymnast, let us pull off this frock. Ho, by G--, gentlemen, said the
monk, there is a chapter in Statutis Ordinis which opposeth my laying of it
down. Pish! said Gymnast, a fig for your chapter! This frock breaks both
your shoulders, put it off. My friend, said the monk, let me alone with
it; for, by G--, I'll drink the better that it is on. It makes all my body
jocund. If I should lay it aside, the waggish pages would cut to
themselves garters out of it, as I was once served at Coulaines. And,
which is worse, I shall lose my appetite. But if in this habit I sit down
at table, I will drink, by G--, both to thee and to thy horse, and so
courage, frolic, God save the company! I have already supped, yet will I
eat never a whit the less for that; for I have a paved stomach, as hollow
as a butt of malvoisie or St. Benedictus' boot (butt), and always open like
a lawyer's pouch. Of all fishes but the tench take the wing of a partridge
or the thigh of a nun. Doth not he die like a good fellow that dies with a
stiff catso? Our prior loves exceedingly the white of a capon. In that,
said Gymnast, he doth not resemble the foxes; for of the capons, hens, and
pullets which they carry away they never eat the white. Why? said the
monk. Because, said Gymnast, they have no cooks to dress them; and, if
they be not competently made ready, they remain red and not white; the
redness of meats being a token that they have not got enough of the fire,
whether by boiling, roasting, or otherwise, except the shrimps, lobsters,
crabs, and crayfishes, which are cardinalized with boiling. By God's
feast-gazers, said the monk, the porter of our abbey then hath not his head
well boiled, for his eyes are as red as a mazer made of an alder-tree. The
thigh of this leveret is good for those that have the gout. To the purpose
of the truel,--what is the reason that the thighs of a gentlewoman are
always fresh and cool? This problem, said Gargantua, is neither in
Aristotle, in Alexander Aphrodiseus, nor in Plutarch. There are three
causes, said the monk, by which that place is naturally refreshed. Primo,
because the water runs all along by it. Secundo, because it is a shady
place, obscure and dark, upon which the sun never shines. And thirdly,
because it is continually flabbelled, blown upon, and aired by the north
winds of the hole arstick, the fan of the smock, and flipflap of the
codpiece. And lusty, my lads. Some bousing liquor, page! So! crack,
crack, crack. O how good is God, that gives us of this excellent juice! I
call him to witness, if I had been in the time of Jesus Christ, I would
have kept him from being taken by the Jews in the garden of Olivet. And
the devil fail me, if I should have failed to cut off the hams of these
gentlemen apostles who ran away so basely after they had well supped, and
left their good master in the lurch. I hate that man worse than poison
that offers to run away when he should fight and lay stoutly about him. Oh
that I were but King of France for fourscore or a hundred years! By G--, I
should whip like curtail-dogs these runaways of Pavia. A plague take them;
why did they not choose rather to die there than to leave their good prince
in that pinch and necessity? Is it not better and more honourable to
perish in fighting valiantly than to live in disgrace by a cowardly running
away? We are like to eat no great store of goslings this year; therefore,
friend, reach me some of that roasted pig there.

Diavolo, is there no more must? No more sweet wine? Germinavit radix
Jesse. Je renie ma vie, je meurs de soif; I renounce my life, I rage for
thirst. This wine is none of the worst. What wine drink you at Paris? I
give myself to the devil, if I did not once keep open house at Paris for
all comers six months together. Do you know Friar Claude of the high
kilderkins? Oh the good fellow that he is! But I do not know what fly
hath stung him of late, he is become so hard a student. For my part, I
study not at all. In our abbey we never study for fear of the mumps, which
disease in horses is called the mourning in the chine. Our late abbot was
wont to say that it is a monstrous thing to see a learned monk. By G--,
master, my friend, Magis magnos clericos non sunt magis magnos sapientes.
You never saw so many hares as there are this year. I could not anywhere
come by a goshawk nor tassel of falcon. My Lord Belloniere promised me a
lanner, but he wrote to me not long ago that he was become pursy. The
partridges will so multiply henceforth, that they will go near to eat up
our ears. I take no delight in the stalking-horse, for I catch such cold
that I am like to founder myself at that sport. If I do not run, toil,
travel, and trot about, I am not well at ease. True it is that in leaping
over the hedges and bushes my frock leaves always some of its wool behind
it. I have recovered a dainty greyhound; I give him to the devil, if he
suffer a hare to escape him. A groom was leading him to my Lord
Huntlittle, and I robbed him of him. Did I ill? No, Friar John, said
Gymnast, no, by all the devils that are, no! So, said the monk, do I
attest these same devils so long as they last, or rather, virtue (of) G--,
what could that gouty limpard have done with so fine a dog? By the body of
G--, he is better pleased when one presents him with a good yoke of oxen.
How now, said Ponocrates, you swear, Friar John. It is only, said the
monk, but to grace and adorn my speech. They are colours of a Ciceronian

Chapter 1.XL.

Why monks are the outcasts of the world; and wherefore some have bigger
noses than others.

By the faith of a Christian, said Eudemon, I do wonderfully dote and enter
in a great ecstasy when I consider the honesty and good fellowship of this
monk, for he makes us here all merry. How is it, then, that they exclude
the monks from all good companies, calling them feast-troublers, marrers of
mirth, and disturbers of all civil conversation, as the bees drive away the
drones from their hives? Ignavum fucos pecus, said Maro, a praesepibus
arcent. Hereunto, answered Gargantua, there is nothing so true as that the
frock and cowl draw unto itself the opprobries, injuries, and maledictions
of the world, just as the wind called Cecias attracts the clouds. The
peremptory reason is, because they eat the ordure and excrements of the
world, that is to say, the sins of the people, and, like dung-chewers and
excrementitious eaters, they are cast into the privies and secessive
places, that is, the convents and abbeys, separated from political
conversation, as the jakes and retreats of a house are. But if you
conceive how an ape in a family is always mocked and provokingly incensed,
you shall easily apprehend how monks are shunned of all men, both young and
old. The ape keeps not the house as a dog doth, he draws not in the plough
as the ox, he yields neither milk nor wool as the sheep, he carrieth no
burden as a horse doth. That which he doth, is only to conskite, spoil,
and defile all, which is the cause wherefore he hath of all men mocks,
frumperies, and bastinadoes.

After the same manner a monk--I mean those lither, idle, lazy monks--doth
not labour and work, as do the peasant and artificer; doth not ward and
defend the country, as doth the man of war; cureth not the sick and
diseased, as the physician doth; doth neither preach nor teach, as do the
evangelical doctors and schoolmasters; doth not import commodities and
things necessary for the commonwealth, as the merchant doth. Therefore is
it that by and of all men they are hooted at, hated, and abhorred. Yea,
but, said Grangousier, they pray to God for us. Nothing less, answered
Gargantua. True it is, that with a tingle tangle jangling of bells they
trouble and disquiet all their neighbours about them. Right, said the
monk; a mass, a matin, a vesper well rung, are half said. They mumble out
great store of legends and psalms, by them not at all understood; they say
many paternosters interlarded with Ave-Maries, without thinking upon or
apprehending the meaning of what it is they say, which truly I call mocking
of God, and not prayers. But so help them God, as they pray for us, and
not for being afraid to lose their victuals, their manchots, and good fat
pottage. All true Christians, of all estates and conditions, in all places
and at all times, send up their prayers to God, and the Mediator prayeth
and intercedeth for them, and God is gracious to them. Now such a one is
our good Friar John; therefore every man desireth to have him in his
company. He is no bigot or hypocrite; he is not torn and divided betwixt
reality and appearance; no wretch of a rugged and peevish disposition, but
honest, jovial, resolute, and a good fellow. He travels, he labours, he
defends the oppressed, comforts the afflicted, helps the needy, and keeps
the close of the abbey. Nay, said the monk, I do a great deal more than
that; for whilst we are in despatching our matins and anniversaries in the
choir, I make withal some crossbow-strings, polish glass bottles and bolts,
I twist lines and weave purse nets wherein to catch coneys. I am never
idle. But now, hither come, some drink, some drink here! Bring the fruit.
These chestnuts are of the wood of Estrox, and with good new wine are able
to make you a fine cracker and composer of bum-sonnets. You are not as
yet, it seems, well moistened in this house with the sweet wine and must.
By G--, I drink to all men freely, and at all fords, like a proctor or
promoter's horse. Friar John, said Gymnast, take away the snot that hangs
at your nose. Ha, ha, said the monk, am not I in danger of drowning,
seeing I am in water even to the nose? No, no, Quare? Quia, though some
water come out from thence, there never goes in any; for it is well
antidoted with pot-proof armour and syrup of the vine-leaf.

Oh, my friend, he that hath winter-boots made of such leather may boldly
fish for oysters, for they will never take water. What is the cause, said
Gargantua, that Friar John hath such a fair nose? Because, said
Grangousier, that God would have it so, who frameth us in such form and for
such end as is most agreeable with his divine will, even as a potter
fashioneth his vessels. Because, said Ponocrates, he came with the first
to the fair of noses, and therefore made choice of the fairest and the
greatest. Pish, said the monk, that is not the reason of it, but,
according to the true monastical philosophy, it is because my nurse had
soft teats, by virtue whereof, whilst she gave me suck, my nose did sink in
as in so much butter. The hard breasts of nurses make children
short-nosed. But hey, gay, Ad formam nasi cognoscitur ad te levavi. I
never eat any confections, page, whilst I am at the bibbery. Item, bring
me rather some toasts.

Chapter 1.XLI.

How the Monk made Gargantua sleep, and of his hours and breviaries.

Supper being ended, they consulted of the business in hand, and concluded
that about midnight they should fall unawares upon the enemy, to know what
manner of watch and ward they kept, and that in the meanwhile they should
take a little rest the better to refresh themselves. But Gargantua could
not sleep by any means, on which side soever he turned himself. Whereupon
the monk said to him, I never sleep soundly but when I am at sermon or
prayers. Let us therefore begin, you and I, the seven penitential psalms,
to try whether you shall not quickly fall asleep. The conceit pleased
Gargantua very well, and, beginning the first of these psalms, as soon as
they came to the words Beati quorum they fell asleep, both the one and the
other. But the monk, for his being formerly accustomed to the hour of
claustral matins, failed not to awake a little before midnight, and, being
up himself, awaked all the rest, in singing aloud, and with a full clear
voice, the song:

Awake, O Reinian, ho, awake!
Awake, O Reinian, ho!
Get up, you no more sleep must take;
Get up, for we must go.

When they were all roused and up, he said, My masters, it is a usual
saying, that we begin matins with coughing and supper with drinking. Let
us now, in doing clean contrarily, begin our matins with drinking, and at
night before supper we shall cough as hard as we can. What, said
Gargantua, to drink so soon after sleep? This is not to live according to
the diet and prescript rule of the physicians, for you ought first to scour
and cleanse your stomach of all its superfluities and excrements. Oh, well
physicked, said the monk; a hundred devils leap into my body, if there be
not more old drunkards than old physicians! I have made this paction and
covenant with my appetite, that it always lieth down and goes to bed with
myself, for to that I every day give very good order; then the next morning
it also riseth with me and gets up when I am awake. Mind you your charges,
gentlemen, or tend your cures as much as you will. I will get me to my
drawer; in terms of falconry, my tiring. What drawer or tiring do you
mean? said Gargantua. My breviary, said the monk, for just as the
falconers, before they feed their hawks, do make them draw at a hen's leg
to purge their brains of phlegm and sharpen them to a good appetite, so, by
taking this merry little breviary in the morning, I scour all my lungs and
am presently ready to drink.

After what manner, said Gargantua, do you say these fair hours and prayers
of yours? After the manner of Whipfield (Fessecamp, and corruptly Fecan.),
said the monk, by three psalms and three lessons, or nothing at all, he
that will. I never tie myself to hours, prayers, and sacraments; for they
are made for the man and not the man for them. Therefore is it that I make
my prayers in fashion of stirrup-leathers; I shorten or lengthen them when
I think good. Brevis oratio penetrat caelos et longa potatio evacuat
scyphos. Where is that written? By my faith, said Ponocrates, I cannot
tell, my pillicock, but thou art more worth than gold. Therein, said the
monk, I am like you; but, venite, apotemus. Then made they ready store of
carbonadoes, or rashers on the coals, and good fat soups, or brewis with
sippets; and the monk drank what he pleased. Some kept him company, and
the rest did forbear, for their stomachs were not as yet opened.
Afterwards every man began to arm and befit himself for the field. And they
armed the monk against his will; for he desired no other armour for back
and breast but his frock, nor any other weapon in his hand but the staff of
the cross. Yet at their pleasure was he completely armed cap-a-pie, and
mounted upon one of the best horses in the kingdom, with a good slashing
shable by his side, together with Gargantua, Ponocrates, Gymnast, Eudemon,
and five-and-twenty more of the most resolute and adventurous of
Grangousier's house, all armed at proof with their lances in their hands,
mounted like St. George, and everyone of them having an arquebusier behind

Chapter 1.XLII.

How the Monk encouraged his fellow-champions, and how he hanged upon a

[Illustration: Valiant Champions on Their Adventure--1-42-086]

Thus went out those valiant champions on their adventure, in full
resolution to know what enterprise they should undertake, and what to take
heed of and look well to in the day of the great and horrible battle. And
the monk encouraged them, saying, My children, do not fear nor doubt, I
will conduct you safely. God and Sanct Benedict be with us! If I had
strength answerable to my courage, by's death, I would plume them for you
like ducks. I fear nothing but the great ordnance; yet I know of a charm
by way of prayer, which the subsexton of our abbey taught me, that will
preserve a man from the violence of guns and all manner of fire-weapons and
engines; but it will do me no good, because I do not believe it.
Nevertheless, I hope my staff of the cross shall this day play devilish
pranks amongst them. By G--, whoever of our party shall offer to play the
duck, and shrink when blows are a-dealing, I give myself to the devil, if I
do not make a monk of him in my stead, and hamper him within my frock,
which is a sovereign cure against cowardice. Did you never hear of my Lord
Meurles his greyhound, which was not worth a straw in the fields? He put a
frock about his neck: by the body of G--, there was neither hare nor fox
that could escape him, and, which is more, he lined all the bitches in the
country, though before that he was feeble-reined and ex frigidis et

The monk uttering these words in choler, as he passed under a walnut-tree,
in his way towards the causey, he broached the vizor of his helmet on the
stump of a great branch of the said tree. Nevertheless, he set his spurs
so fiercely to the horse, who was full of mettle and quick on the spur,
that he bounded forwards, and the monk going about to ungrapple his vizor,
let go his hold of the bridle, and so hanged by his hand upon the bough,
whilst his horse stole away from under him. By this means was the monk
left hanging on the walnut-tree, and crying for help, murder, murder,
swearing also that he was betrayed. Eudemon perceived him first, and
calling Gargantua said, Sir, come and see Absalom hanging. Gargantua,
being come, considered the countenance of the monk, and in what posture he
hanged; wherefore he said to Eudemon, You were mistaken in comparing him to
Absalom; for Absalom hung by his hair, but this shaveling monk hangeth by
the ears. Help me, said the monk, in the devil's name; is this a time for
you to prate? You seem to me to be like the decretalist preachers, who say
that whosoever shall see his neighbour in the danger of death, ought, upon
pain of trisulk excommunication, rather choose to admonish him to make his
confession to a priest, and put his conscience in the state of peace, than
otherwise to help and relieve him.

And therefore when I shall see them fallen into a river, and ready to be
drowned, I shall make them a fair long sermon de contemptu mundi, et fuga
seculi; and when they are stark dead, shall then go to their aid and
succour in fishing after them. Be quiet, said Gymnast, and stir not, my
minion. I am now coming to unhang thee and to set thee at freedom, for
thou art a pretty little gentle monachus. Monachus in claustro non valet
ova duo; sed quando est extra, bene valet triginta. I have seen above five
hundred hanged, but I never saw any have a better countenance in his
dangling and pendilatory swagging. Truly, if I had so good a one, I would
willingly hang thus all my lifetime. What, said the monk, have you almost
done preaching? Help me, in the name of God, seeing you will not in the
name of the other spirit, or, by the habit which I wear, you shall repent
it, tempore et loco praelibatis.

Then Gymnast alighted from his horse, and, climbing up the walnut-tree,
lifted up the monk with one hand by the gussets of his armour under the
armpits, and with the other undid his vizor from the stump of the broken
branch; which done, he let him fall to the ground and himself after. As
soon as the monk was down, he put off all his armour, and threw away one
piece after another about the field, and, taking to him again his staff of
the cross, remounted up to his horse, which Eudemon had caught in his
running away. Then went they on merrily, riding along on the highway.

Chapter 1.XLIII.

How the scouts and fore-party of Picrochole were met with by Gargantua, and
how the Monk slew Captain Drawforth (Tirevant.), and then was taken
prisoner by his enemies.

[Illustration: I Hear the Enemy, Let us Rally--1-43-088]

Picrochole, at the relation of those who had escaped out of the broil and
defeat wherein Tripet was untriped, grew very angry that the devils should
have so run upon his men, and held all that night a counsel of war, at
which Rashcalf and Touchfaucet (Hastiveau, Touquedillon.), concluded his
power to be such that he was able to defeat all the devils of hell if they
should come to jostle with his forces. This Picrochole did not fully
believe, though he doubted not much of it. Therefore sent he under the
command and conduct of the Count Drawforth, for discovering of the country,
the number of sixteen hundred horsemen, all well mounted upon light horses
for skirmish and thoroughly besprinkled with holy water; and everyone for
their field-mark or cognizance had the sign of a star in his scarf, to
serve at all adventures in case they should happen to encounter with
devils, that by the virtue, as well of that Gregorian water as of the stars
which they wore, they might make them disappear and evanish.

In this equipage they made an excursion upon the country till they came
near to the Vauguyon, which is the valley of Guyon, and to the spital, but
could never find anybody to speak unto; whereupon they returned a little
back, and took occasion to pass above the aforesaid hospital to try what
intelligence they could come by in those parts. In which resolution riding
on, and by chance in a pastoral lodge or shepherd's cottage near to Coudray
hitting upon the five pilgrims, they carried them way-bound and manacled,
as if they had been spies, for all the exclamations, adjurations, and
requests that they could make. Being come down from thence towards
Seville, they were heard by Gargantua, who said then unto those that were
with him, Comrades and fellow-soldiers, we have here met with an encounter,
and they are ten times in number more than we. Shall we charge them or no?
What a devil, said the monk, shall we do else? Do you esteem men by their
number rather than by their valour and prowess? With this he cried out,
Charge, devils, charge! Which when the enemies heard, they thought
certainly that they had been very devils, and therefore even then began all
of them to run away as hard as they could drive, Drawforth only excepted,
who immediately settled his lance on its rest, and therewith hit the monk
with all his force on the very middle of his breast, but, coming against
his horrific frock, the point of the iron being with the blow either broke
off or blunted, it was in matter of execution as if you had struck against
an anvil with a little wax-candle.

Then did the monk with his staff of the cross give him such a sturdy thump
and whirret betwixt his neck and shoulders, upon the acromion bone, that he
made him lose both sense and motion and fall down stone dead at his horse's
feet; and, seeing the sign of the star which he wore scarfwise, he said
unto Gargantua, These men are but priests, which is but the beginning of a
monk; by St. John, I am a perfect monk, I will kill them to you like flies.
Then ran he after them at a swift and full gallop till he overtook the
rear, and felled them down like tree-leaves, striking athwart and alongst
and every way. Gymnast presently asked Gargantua if they should pursue
them. To whom Gargantua answered, By no means; for, according to right
military discipline, you must never drive your enemy unto despair, for that
such a strait doth multiply his force and increase his courage, which was
before broken and cast down; neither is there any better help or outrage of
relief for men that are amazed, out of heart, toiled, and spent, than to
hope for no favour at all. How many victories have been taken out of the
hands of the victors by the vanquished, when they would not rest satisfied
with reason, but attempt to put all to the sword, and totally to destroy
their enemies, without leaving so much as one to carry home news of the
defeat of his fellows. Open, therefore, unto your enemies all the gates
and ways, and make to them a bridge of silver rather than fail, that you
may be rid of them. Yea, but, said Gymnast, they have the monk. Have they
the monk? said Gargantua. Upon mine honour, then, it will prove to their
cost. But to prevent all dangers, let us not yet retreat, but halt here
quietly as in an ambush; for I think I do already understand the policy and
judgment of our enemies. They are truly more directed by chance and mere
fortune than by good advice and counsel. In the meanwhile, whilst these
made a stop under the walnut-trees, the monk pursued on the chase, charging
all he overtook, and giving quarter to none, until he met with a trooper
who carried behind him one of the poor pilgrims, and there would have
rifled him. The pilgrim, in hope of relief at the sight of the monk, cried
out, Ha, my lord prior, my good friend, my lord prior, save me, I beseech
you, save me! Which words being heard by those that rode in the van, they
instantly faced about, and seeing there was nobody but the monk that made
this great havoc and slaughter among them, they loaded him with blows as
thick as they use to do an ass with wood. But of all this he felt nothing,
especially when they struck upon his frock, his skin was so hard. Then
they committed him to two of the marshal's men to keep, and, looking about,
saw nobody coming against them, whereupon they thought that Gargantua and
his party were fled. Then was it that they rode as hard as they could
towards the walnut-trees to meet with them, and left the monk there all
alone, with his two foresaid men to guard him. Gargantua heard the noise
and neighing of the horses, and said to his men, Comrades, I hear the track
and beating of the enemy's horse-feet, and withal perceive that some of
them come in a troop and full body against us. Let us rally and close
here, then set forward in order, and by this means we shall be able to
receive their charge to their loss and our honour.

Chapter 1.XLIV.

How the Monk rid himself of his keepers, and how Picrochole's forlorn hope
was defeated.

The monk, seeing them break off thus without order, conjectured that they
were to set upon Gargantua and those that were with him, and was
wonderfully grieved that he could not succour them. Then considered he the
countenance of the two keepers in whose custody he was, who would have
willingly run after the troops to get some booty and plunder, and were
always looking towards the valley unto which they were going. Farther, he
syllogized, saying, These men are but badly skilled in matters of war, for
they have not required my parole, neither have they taken my sword from me.
Suddenly hereafter he drew his brackmard or horseman's sword, wherewith he
gave the keeper which held him on the right side such a sound slash that he
cut clean through the jugulary veins and the sphagitid or transparent
arteries of the neck, with the fore-part of the throat called the
gargareon, even unto the two adenes, which are throat kernels; and,
redoubling the blow, he opened the spinal marrow betwixt the second and
third vertebrae. There fell down that keeper stark dead to the ground.
Then the monk, reining his horse to the left, ran upon the other, who,
seeing his fellow dead, and the monk to have the advantage of him, cried
with a loud voice, Ha, my lord prior, quarter; I yield, my lord prior,
quarter; quarter, my good friend, my lord prior. And the monk cried
likewise, My lord posterior, my friend, my lord posterior, you shall have
it upon your posteriorums. Ha, said the keeper, my lord prior, my minion,
my gentle lord prior, I pray God make you an abbot. By the habit, said the
monk, which I wear, I will here make you a cardinal. What! do you use to
pay ransoms to religious men? You shall therefore have by-and-by a red hat
of my giving. And the fellow cried, Ha, my lord prior, my lord prior, my
lord abbot that shall be, my lord cardinal, my lord all! Ha, ha, hes, no,
my lord prior, my good little lord the prior, I yield, render and deliver
myself up to you. And I deliver thee, said the monk, to all the devils in
hell. Then at one stroke he cut off his head, cutting his scalp upon the
temple-bones, and lifting up in the upper part of the skull the two
triangulary bones called sincipital, or the two bones bregmatis, together
with the sagittal commissure or dartlike seam which distinguisheth the
right side of the head from the left, as also a great part of the coronal
or forehead bone, by which terrible blow likewise he cut the two meninges
or films which enwrap the brain, and made a deep wound in the brain's two
posterior ventricles, and the cranium or skull abode hanging upon his
shoulders by the skin of the pericranium behind, in form of a doctor's
bonnet, black without and red within. Thus fell he down also to the ground
stark dead.

And presently the monk gave his horse the spur, and kept the way that the
enemy held, who had met with Gargantua and his companions in the broad
highway, and were so diminished of their number for the enormous slaughter
that Gargantua had made with his great tree amongst them, as also Gymnast,
Ponocrates, Eudemon, and the rest, that they began to retreat disorderly
and in great haste, as men altogether affrighted and troubled in both sense
and understanding, and as if they had seen the very proper species and form
of death before their eyes; or rather, as when you see an ass with a brizze
or gadbee under his tail, or fly that stings him, run hither and thither
without keeping any path or way, throwing down his load to the ground,
breaking his bridle and reins, and taking no breath nor rest, and no man
can tell what ails him, for they see not anything touch him. So fled these
people destitute of wit, without knowing any cause of flying, only pursued
by a panic terror which in their minds they had conceived. The monk,
perceiving that their whole intent was to betake themselves to their heels,
alighted from his horse and got upon a big large rock which was in the way,
and with his great brackmard sword laid such load upon those runaways, and
with main strength fetching a compass with his arm without feigning or
sparing, slew and overthrew so many that his sword broke in two pieces.
Then thought he within himself that he had slain and killed sufficiently,
and that the rest should escape to carry news. Therefore he took up a
battle-axe of those that lay there dead, and got upon the rock again,
passing his time to see the enemy thus flying and to tumble himself amongst
the dead bodies, only that he suffered none to carry pike, sword, lance,
nor gun with him, and those who carried the pilgrims bound he made to
alight, and gave their horses unto the said pilgrims, keeping them there
with him under the hedge, and also Touchfaucet, who was then his prisoner.

Chapter 1.XLV.

How the Monk carried along with him the Pilgrims, and of the good words
that Grangousier gave them.

This skirmish being ended, Gargantua retreated with his men, excepting the
monk, and about the dawning of the day they came unto Grangousier, who in
his bed was praying unto God for their safety and victory. And seeing them
all safe and sound, he embraced them lovingly, and asked what was become of
the monk. Gargantua answered him that without doubt the enemies had the
monk. Then have they mischief and ill luck, said Grangousier; which was
very true. Therefore is it a common proverb to this day, to give a man the
monk, or, as in French, lui bailler le moine, when they would express the
doing unto one a mischief. Then commanded he a good breakfast to be
provided for their refreshment. When all was ready, they called Gargantua,
but he was so aggrieved that the monk was not to be heard of that he would
neither eat nor drink. In the meanwhile the monk comes, and from the gate
of the outer court cries out aloud, Fresh wine, fresh wine, Gymnast my
friend! Gymnast went out and saw that it was Friar John, who brought along
with him five pilgrims and Touchfaucet prisoners; whereupon Gargantua
likewise went forth to meet him, and all of them made him the best welcome
that possibly they could, and brought him before Grangousier, who asked him
of all his adventures. The monk told him all, both how he was taken, how
he rid himself of his keepers, of the slaughter he had made by the way, and
how he had rescued the pilgrims and brought along with him Captain
Touchfaucet. Then did they altogether fall to banqueting most merrily. In
the meantime Grangousier asked the pilgrims what countrymen they were,
whence they came, and whither they went. Sweer-to-go in the name of the
rest answered, My sovereign lord, I am of Saint Genou in Berry, this man is
of Palvau, this other is of Onzay, this of Argy, this of St. Nazarand, and
this man of Villebrenin. We come from Saint Sebastian near Nantes, and are
now returning, as we best may, by easy journeys. Yea, but, said
Grangousier, what went you to do at Saint Sebastian? We went, said
Sweer-to-go, to offer up unto that sanct our vows against the plague. Ah,
poor men! said Grangousier, do you think that the plague comes from Saint
Sebastian? Yes, truly, answered Sweer-to-go, our preachers tell us so
indeed. But is it so, said Grangousier, do the false prophets teach you
such abuses? Do they thus blaspheme the sancts and holy men of God, as to
make them like unto the devils, who do nothing but hurt unto mankind,--as
Homer writeth, that the plague was sent into the camp of the Greeks by
Apollo, and as the poets feign a great rabble of Vejoves and mischievous
gods. So did a certain cafard or dissembling religionary preach at Sinay,
that Saint Anthony sent the fire into men's legs, that Saint Eutropius made
men hydropic, Saint Clidas, fools, and that Saint Genou made them goutish.
But I punished him so exemplarily, though he called me heretic for it, that
since that time no such hypocritical rogue durst set his foot within my
territories. And truly I wonder that your king should suffer them in their
sermons to publish such scandalous doctrine in his dominions; for they
deserve to be chastised with greater severity than those who, by magical
art, or any other device, have brought the pestilence into a country. The
pest killeth but the bodies, but such abominable imposters empoison our
very souls. As he spake these words, in came the monk very resolute, and
asked them, Whence are you, you poor wretches? Of Saint Genou, said they.
And how, said the monk, does the Abbot Gulligut, the good drinker,--and the
monks, what cheer make they? By G-- body, they'll have a fling at your
wives, and breast them to some purpose, whilst you are upon your roaming
rant and gadding pilgrimage. Hin, hen, said Sweer-to-go, I am not afraid
of mine, for he that shall see her by day will never break his neck to come
to her in the night-time. Yea, marry, said the monk, now you have hit it.
Let her be as ugly as ever was Proserpina, she will once, by the Lord G--,
be overturned, and get her skin-coat shaken, if there dwell any monks near
to her; for a good carpenter will make use of any kind of timber. Let me
be peppered with the pox, if you find not all your wives with child at your
return; for the very shadow of the steeple of an abbey is fruitful. It is,
said Gargantua, like the water of Nilus in Egypt, if you believe Strabo and
Pliny, Lib. 7, cap. 3. What virtue will there be then, said the monk, in
their bullets of concupiscence, their habits and their bodies?

Then, said Grangousier, go your ways, poor men, in the name of God the
Creator, to whom I pray to guide you perpetually, and henceforward be not
so ready to undertake these idle and unprofitable journeys. Look to your
families, labour every man in his vocation, instruct your children, and
live as the good apostle St. Paul directeth you; in doing whereof, God, his
angels and sancts, will guard and protect you, and no evil or plague at any
time shall befall you. Then Gargantua led them into the hall to take their
refection; but the pilgrims did nothing but sigh, and said to Gargantua, O
how happy is that land which hath such a man for their lord! We have been
more edified and instructed by the talk which he had with us, than by all
the sermons that ever were preached in our town. This is, said Gargantua,
that which Plato saith, Lib. 5 de Republ., that those commonwealths are
happy, whose rulers philosophate, and whose philosophers rule. Then caused
he their wallets to be filled with victuals and their bottles with wine,
and gave unto each of them a horse to ease them upon the way, together with
some pence to live by.

Chapter 1.XLVI.

How Grangousier did very kindly entertain Touchfaucet his prisoner.

Touchfaucet was presented unto Grangousier, and by him examined upon the
enterprise and attempt of Picrochole, what it was he could pretend to, or
aim at, by the rustling stir and tumultuary coil of this his sudden
invasion. Whereunto he answered, that his end and purpose was to conquer
all the country, if he could, for the injury done to his cake-bakers. It
is too great an undertaking, said Grangousier; and, as the proverb is, He
that grips too much, holds fast but little. The time is not now as
formerly, to conquer the kingdoms of our neighbour princes, and to build up
our own greatness upon the loss of our nearest Christian Brother. This
imitation of the ancient Herculeses, Alexanders, Hannibals, Scipios,
Caesars, and other such heroes, is quite contrary to the profession of the
gospel of Christ, by which we are commanded to preserve, keep, rule, and
govern every man his own country and lands, and not in a hostile manner to
invade others; and that which heretofore the Barbars and Saracens called
prowess and valour, we do now call robbing, thievery, and wickedness. It
would have been more commendable in him to have contained himself within
the bounds of his own territories, royally governing them, than to insult
and domineer in mine, pillaging and plundering everywhere like a most
unmerciful enemy; for, by ruling his own with discretion, he might have
increased his greatness, but by robbing me he cannot escape destruction.
Go your ways in the name of God, prosecute good enterprises, show your king
what is amiss, and never counsel him with regard unto your own particular
profit, for the public loss will swallow up the private benefit. As for
your ransom, I do freely remit it to you, and will that your arms and horse
be restored to you; so should good neighbours do, and ancient friends,
seeing this our difference is not properly war. As Plato, Lib. 5 de
Repub., would not have it called war, but sedition, when the Greeks took up
arms against one another, and that therefore, when such combustions should
arise amongst them, his advice was to behave themselves in the managing of
them with all discretion and modesty. Although you call it war, it is but
superficial; it entereth not into the closet and inmost cabinet of our
hearts. For neither of us hath been wronged in his honour, nor is there
any question betwixt us in the main, but only how to redress, by the bye,
some petty faults committed by our men,--I mean, both yours and ours,
which, although you knew, you ought to let pass; for these quarrelsome
persons deserve rather to be contemned than mentioned, especially seeing I
offered them satisfaction according to the wrong. God shall be the just
judge of our variances, whom I beseech by death rather to take me out of
this life, and to permit my goods to perish and be destroyed before mine
eyes, than that by me or mine he should in any sort be wronged. These
words uttered, he called the monk, and before them all thus spoke unto him,
Friar John, my good friend, it is you that took prisoner the Captain
Touchfaucet here present? Sir, said the monk, seeing himself is here, and
that he is of the years of discretion, I had rather you should know it by
his confession than by any words of mine. Then said Touchfaucet, My
sovereign lord it is he indeed that took me, and I do therefore most freely
yield myself his prisoner. Have you put him to any ransom? said
Grangousier to the monk. No, said the monk, of that I take no care. How
much would you have for having taken him? Nothing, nothing, said the monk;
I am not swayed by that, nor do I regard it. Then Grangousier commanded
that, in presence of Touchfaucet, should be delivered to the monk for
taking him the sum of three score and two thousand saluts (in English
money, fifteen thousand and five hundred pounds), which was done, whilst
they made a collation or little banquet to the said Touchfaucet, of whom
Grangousier asked if he would stay with him, or if he loved rather to
return to his king. Touchfaucet answered that he was content to take
whatever course he would advise him to. Then, said Grangousier, return
unto your king, and God be with you.

Then he gave him an excellent sword of a Vienne blade, with a golden
scabbard wrought with vine-branch-like flourishes, of fair goldsmith's
work, and a collar or neck-chain of gold, weighing seven hundred and two
thousand marks (at eight ounces each), garnished with precious stones of
the finest sort, esteemed at a hundred and sixty thousand ducats, and ten
thousand crowns more, as an honourable donative, by way of present.

After this talk Touchfaucet got to his horse, and Gargantua for his safety
allowed him the guard of thirty men-at-arms and six score archers to attend
him, under the conduct of Gymnast, to bring him even unto the gate of the
rock Clermond, if there were need. As soon as he was gone, the monk
restored unto Grangousier the three score and two thousand saluts which he
had received, saying, Sir, it is not as yet the time for you to give such
gifts; stay till this war be at an end, for none can tell what accidents
may occur, and war begun without good provision of money beforehand for
going through with it, is but as a breathing of strength, and blast that
will quickly pass away. Coin is the sinews of war. Well then, said
Grangousier, at the end I will content you by some honest recompense, as
also all those who shall do me good service.

Chapter 1.XLVII.

How Grangousier sent for his legions, and how Touchfaucet slew Rashcalf,
and was afterwards executed by the command of Picrochole.

About this same time those of Besse, of the Old Market, of St. James'
Bourg, of the Draggage, of Parille, of the Rivers, of the rocks St. Pol, of
the Vaubreton, of Pautille, of the Brehemont, of Clainbridge, of Cravant,
of Grammont, of the town at the Badgerholes, of Huymes, of Segre, of Husse,
of St. Lovant, of Panzoust, of the Coldraux, of Verron, of Coulaines, of
Chose, of Varenes, of Bourgueil, of the Bouchard Island, of the Croullay,
of Narsay, of Cande, of Montsoreau, and other bordering places, sent
ambassadors unto Grangousier, to tell him that they were advised of the
great wrongs which Picrochole had done him, and, in regard of their ancient
confederacy, offered him what assistance they could afford, both in men,
money, victuals, and ammunition, and other necessaries for war. The money
which by the joint agreement of them all was sent unto him, amounted to six
score and fourteen millions, two crowns and a half of pure gold. The
forces wherewith they did assist him did consist in fifteen thousand
cuirassiers, two-and-thirty thousand light horsemen, four score and nine
thousand dragoons, and a hundred-and-forty thousand volunteer adventurers.
These had with them eleven thousand and two hundred cannons, double
cannons, long pieces of artillery called basilisks, and smaller sized ones
known by the name of spirols, besides the mortar-pieces and grenadoes. Of
pioneers they had seven-and-forty thousand, all victualled and paid for six
months and four days of advance. Which offer Gargantua did not altogether
refuse, nor wholly accept of; but, giving them hearty thanks, said that he
would compose and order the war by such a device, that there should not be
found great need to put so many honest men to trouble in the managing of
it; and therefore was content at that time to give order only for bringing
along the legions which he maintained in his ordinary garrison towns of the
Deviniere, of Chavigny, of Gravot, and of the Quinquenais, amounting to the
number of two thousand cuirassiers, three score and six thousand
foot-soldiers, six-and-twenty thousand dragoons, attended by two hundred
pieces of great ordnance, two-and-twenty thousand pioneers, and six thousand
light horsemen, all drawn up in troops, so well befitted and accommodated
with their commissaries, sutlers, farriers, harness-makers, and other such
like necessary members in a military camp, so fully instructed in the art of
warfare, so perfectly knowing and following their colours, so ready to hear
and obey their captains, so nimble to run, so strong at their charging, so
prudent in their adventures, and every day so well disciplined, that they
seemed rather to be a concert of organ-pipes, or mutual concord of the
wheels of a clock, than an infantry and cavalry, or army of soldiers.

Touchfaucet immediately after his return presented himself before
Picrochole, and related unto him at large all that he had done and seen,
and at last endeavoured to persuade him with strong and forcible arguments
to capitulate and make an agreement with Grangousier, whom he found to be
the honestest man in the world; saying further, that it was neither right
nor reason thus to trouble his neighbours, of whom they had never received
anything but good. And in regard of the main point, that they should never
be able to go through stitch with that war, but to their great damage and
mischief; for the forces of Picrochole were not so considerable but that
Grangousier could easily overthrow them.

He had not well done speaking when Rashcalf said out aloud, Unhappy is that
prince which is by such men served, who are so easily corrupted, as I know
Touchfaucet is. For I see his courage so changed that he had willingly
joined with our enemies to fight against us and betray us, if they would
have received him; but as virtue is of all, both friends and foes, praised
and esteemed, so is wickedness soon known and suspected, and although it
happen the enemies to make use thereof for their profit, yet have they
always the wicked and the traitors in abomination.

Touchfaucet being at these words very impatient, drew out his sword, and
therewith ran Rashcalf through the body, a little under the nipple of his
left side, whereof he died presently, and pulling back his sword out of his
body said boldly, So let him perish that shall a faithful servant blame.
Picrochole incontinently grew furious, and seeing Touchfaucet's new sword
and his scabbard so richly diapered with flourishes of most excellent
workmanship, said, Did they give thee this weapon so feloniously therewith
to kill before my face my so good friend Rashcalf? Then immediately
commanded he his guard to hew him in pieces, which was instantly done, and
that so cruelly that the chamber was all dyed with blood. Afterwards he
appointed the corpse of Rashcalf to be honourably buried, and that of
Touchfaucet to be cast over the walls into the ditch.

The news of these excessive violences were quickly spread through all the
army; whereupon many began to murmur against Picrochole, in so far that
Pinchpenny said to him, My sovereign lord, I know not what the issue of
this enterprise will be. I see your men much dejected, and not well
resolved in their minds, by considering that we are here very ill provided
of victual, and that our number is already much diminished by three or four
sallies. Furthermore, great supplies and recruits come daily in to your
enemies; but we so moulder away that, if we be once besieged, I do not see
how we can escape a total destruction. Tush, pish, said Picrochole, you
are like the Melun eels, you cry before they come to you. Let them come,
let them come, if they dare.

Chapter 1.XLVIII.

How Gargantua set upon Picrochole within the rock Clermond, and utterly
defeated the army of the said Picrochole.

Gargantua had the charge of the whole army, and his father Grangousier
stayed in his castle, who, encouraging them with good words, promised great
rewards unto those that should do any notable service. Having thus set
forward, as soon as they had gained the pass at the ford of Vede, with
boats and bridges speedily made they passed over in a trice. Then
considering the situation of the town, which was on a high and advantageous
place, Gargantua thought fit to call his council, and pass that night in
deliberation upon what was to be done. But Gymnast said unto him, My
sovereign lord, such is the nature and complexion of the French, that they
are worth nothing but at the first push. Then are they more fierce than
devils. But if they linger a little and be wearied with delays, they'll
prove more faint and remiss than women. My opinion is, therefore, that now
presently, after your men have taken breath and some small refection, you
give order for a resolute assault, and that we storm them instantly. His
advice was found very good, and for effectuating thereof he brought forth
his army into the plain field, and placed the reserves on the skirt or
rising of a little hill. The monk took along with him six companies of
foot and two hundred horsemen well armed, and with great diligence crossed
the marsh, and valiantly got upon the top of the green hillock even unto
the highway which leads to Loudun. Whilst the assault was thus begun,
Picrochole's men could not tell well what was best, to issue out and
receive the assailants, or keep within the town and not to stir. Himself
in the mean time, without deliberation, sallied forth in a rage with the
cavalry of his guard, who were forthwith received and royally entertained
with great cannon-shot that fell upon them like hail from the high grounds
on which the artillery was planted. Whereupon the Gargantuists betook
themselves unto the valleys, to give the ordnance leave to play and range
with the larger scope.

Those of the town defended themselves as well as they could, but their shot
passed over us without doing us any hurt at all. Some of Picrochole's men
that had escaped our artillery set most fiercely upon our soldiers, but
prevailed little; for they were all let in betwixt the files, and there
knocked down to the ground, which their fellow-soldiers seeing, they would
have retreated, but the monk having seized upon the pass by the which they
were to return, they ran away and fled in all the disorder and confusion
that could be imagined.

Some would have pursued after them and followed the chase, but the monk
withheld them, apprehending that in their pursuit the pursuers might lose
their ranks, and so give occasion to the besieged to sally out of the town
upon them. Then staying there some space and none coming against him, he
sent the Duke Phrontist to advise Gargantua to advance towards the hill
upon the left hand, to hinder Picrochole's retreat at that gate; which
Gargantua did with all expedition, and sent thither four brigades under the
conduct of Sebast, which had no sooner reached the top of the hill, but
they met Picrochole in the teeth, and those that were with him scattered.

Then charged they upon them stoutly, yet were they much endamaged by those
that were upon the walls, who galled them with all manner of shot, both
from the great ordnance, small guns, and bows. Which Gargantua perceiving,
he went with a strong party to their relief, and with his artillery began
to thunder so terribly upon that canton of the wall, and so long, that all
the strength within the town, to maintain and fill up the breach, was drawn
thither. The monk seeing that quarter which he kept besieged void of men
and competent guards, and in a manner altogether naked and abandoned, did
most magnanimously on a sudden lead up his men towards the fort, and never
left it till he had got up upon it, knowing that such as come to the
reserve in a conflict bring with them always more fear and terror than
those that deal about them with they hands in the fight.

Nevertheless, he gave no alarm till all his soldiers had got within the
wall, except the two hundred horsemen, whom he left without to secure his
entry. Then did he give a most horrible shout, so did all these who were
with him, and immediately thereafter, without resistance, putting to the
edge of the sword the guard that was at that gate, they opened it to the
horsemen, with whom most furiously they altogether ran towards the east
gate, where all the hurlyburly was, and coming close upon them in the rear
overthrew all their forces.

The besieged, seeing that the Gargantuists had won the town upon them, and
that they were like to be secure in no corner of it, submitted themselves
unto the mercy of the monk, and asked for quarter, which the monk very
nobly granted to them, yet made them lay down their arms; then, shutting
them up within churches, gave order to seize upon all the staves of the
crosses, and placed men at the doors to keep them from coming forth. Then
opening that east gate, he issued out to succour and assist Gargantua. But
Picrochole, thinking it had been some relief coming to him from the town,
adventured more forwardly than before, and was upon the giving of a most
desperate home-charge, when Gargantua cried out, Ha, Friar John, my friend
Friar John, you are come in a good hour. Which unexpected accident so
affrighted Picrochole and his men, that, giving all for lost, they betook
themselves to their heels, and fled on all hands. Gargantua chased them
till they came near to Vaugaudry, killing and slaying all the way, and then
sounded the retreat.

Chapter 1.XLIX.

How Picrochole in his flight fell into great misfortunes, and what
Gargantua did after the battle.

Picrochole thus in despair fled towards the Bouchard Island, and in the way
to Riviere his horse stumbled and fell down, whereat he on a sudden was so
incensed, that he with his sword without more ado killed him in his choler;
then, not finding any that would remount him, he was about to have taken an
ass at the mill that was thereby; but the miller's men did so baste his
bones and so soundly bethwack him that they made him both black and blue
with strokes; then stripping him of all his clothes, gave him a scurvy old
canvas jacket wherewith to cover his nakedness. Thus went along this poor
choleric wretch, who, passing the water at Port-Huaulx, and relating his
misadventurous disasters, was foretold by an old Lourpidon hag that his
kingdom should be restored to him at the coming of the Cocklicranes, which
she called Coquecigrues. What is become of him since we cannot certainly
tell, yet was I told that he is now a porter at Lyons, as testy and pettish
in humour as ever he was before, and would be always with great lamentation
inquiring at all strangers of the coming of the Cocklicranes, expecting
assuredly, according to the old woman's prophecy, that at their coming he
shall be re-established in his kingdom. The first thing Gargantua did
after his return into the town was to call the muster-roll of his men,
which when he had done, he found that there were very few either killed or
wounded, only some few foot of Captain Tolmere's company, and Ponocrates,
who was shot with a musket-ball through the doublet. Then he caused them
all at and in their several posts and divisions to take a little
refreshment, which was very plenteously provided for them in the best drink
and victuals that could be had for money, and gave order to the treasurers
and commissaries of the army to pay for and defray that repast, and that
there should be no outrage at all nor abuse committed in the town, seeing
it was his own. And furthermore commanded, that immediately after the
soldiers had done with eating and drinking for that time sufficiently and
to their own hearts' desire, a gathering should be beaten for bringing them
altogether, to be drawn up on the piazza before the castle, there to
receive six months' pay completely. All which was done. After this, by
his direction, were brought before him in the said place all those that
remained of Picrochole's party, unto whom, in the presence of the princes,
nobles, and officers of his court and army, he spoke as followeth.

Chapter 1.L.

Gargantua's speech to the vanquished.

Our forefathers and ancestors of all times have been of this nature and
disposition, that, upon the winning of a battle, they have chosen rather,
for a sign and memorial of their triumphs and victories, to erect trophies
and monuments in the hearts of the vanquished by clemency than by
architecture in the lands which they had conquered. For they did hold in
greater estimation the lively remembrance of men purchased by liberality
than the dumb inscription of arches, pillars, and pyramids, subject to the
injury of storms and tempests, and to the envy of everyone. You may very
well remember of the courtesy which by them was used towards the Bretons in
the battle of St. Aubin of Cormier and at the demolishing of Partenay. You
have heard, and hearing admire, their gentle comportment towards those at
the barriers (the barbarians) of Spaniola, who had plundered, wasted, and
ransacked the maritime borders of Olone and Thalmondois. All this
hemisphere of the world was filled with the praises and congratulations
which yourselves and your fathers made, when Alpharbal, King of Canarre,
not satisfied with his own fortunes, did most furiously invade the land of
Onyx, and with cruel piracies molest all the Armoric Islands and confine
regions of Britany. Yet was he in a set naval fight justly taken and
vanquished by my father, whom God preserve and protect. But what? Whereas
other kings and emperors, yea, those who entitle themselves Catholics,
would have dealt roughly with him, kept him a close prisoner, and put him
to an extreme high ransom, he entreated him very courteously, lodged him
kindly with himself in his own palace, and out of his incredible mildness
and gentle disposition sent him back with a safe conduct, laden with gifts,
laden with favours, laden with all offices of friendship. What fell out
upon it? Being returned into his country, he called a parliament, where
all the princes and states of his kingdom being assembled, he showed them
the humanity which he had found in us, and therefore wished them to take
such course by way of compensation therein as that the whole world might be
edified by the example, as well of their honest graciousness to us as of
our gracious honesty towards them. The result hereof was, that it was
voted and decreed by an unanimous consent, that they should offer up
entirely their lands, dominions, and kingdoms, to be disposed of by us
according to our pleasure.

Alpharbal in his own person presently returned with nine thousand and
thirty-eight great ships of burden, bringing with him the treasures, not
only of his house and royal lineage, but almost of all the country besides.
For he embarking himself, to set sail with a west-north-east wind, everyone
in heaps did cast into the ship gold, silver, rings, jewels, spices, drugs,
and aromatical perfumes, parrots, pelicans, monkeys, civet-cats,
black-spotted weasels, porcupines, &c. He was accounted no good mother's
son that did not cast in all the rare and precious things he had.

Being safely arrived, he came to my said father, and would have kissed his
feet. That action was found too submissively low, and therefore was not
permitted, but in exchange he was most cordially embraced. He offered his
presents; they were not received, because they were too excessive: he
yielded himself voluntarily a servant and vassal, and was content his whole
posterity should be liable to the same bondage; this was not accepted of,
because it seemed not equitable: he surrendered, by virtue of the decree
of his great parliamentary council, his whole countries and kingdoms to
him, offering the deed and conveyance, signed, sealed, and ratified by all
those that were concerned in it; this was altogether refused, and the
parchments cast into the fire. In end, this free goodwill and simple
meaning of the Canarians wrought such tenderness in my father's heart that
he could not abstain from shedding tears, and wept most profusely; then, by
choice words very congruously adapted, strove in what he could to diminish
the estimation of the good offices which he had done them, saying, that any
courtesy he had conferred upon them was not worth a rush, and what favour
soever he had showed them he was bound to do it. But so much the more did
Alpharbal augment the repute thereof. What was the issue? Whereas for his
ransom, in the greatest extremity of rigour and most tyrannical dealing,
could not have been exacted above twenty times a hundred thousand crowns,
and his eldest sons detained as hostages till that sum had been paid, they
made themselves perpetual tributaries, and obliged to give us every year
two millions of gold at four-and-twenty carats fine. The first year we
received the whole sum of two millions; the second year of their own accord
they paid freely to us three-and-twenty hundred thousand crowns; the third
year, six-and-twenty hundred thousand; the fourth year, three millions, and
do so increase it always out of their own goodwill that we shall be
constrained to forbid them to bring us any more. This is the nature of
gratitude and true thankfulness. For time, which gnaws and diminisheth all
things else, augments and increaseth benefits; because a noble action of
liberality, done to a man of reason, doth grow continually by his generous
thinking of it and remembering it.

Being unwilling therefore any way to degenerate from the hereditary
mildness and clemency of my parents, I do now forgive you, deliver you from
all fines and imprisonments, fully release you, set you at liberty, and
every way make you as frank and free as ever you were before. Moreover, at
your going out of the gate, you shall have every one of you three months'
pay to bring you home into your houses and families, and shall have a safe
convoy of six hundred cuirassiers and eight thousand foot under the conduct
of Alexander, esquire of my body, that the clubmen of the country may not
do you any injury. God be with you! I am sorry from my heart that
Picrochole is not here; for I would have given him to understand that this
war was undertaken against my will and without any hope to increase either
my goods or renown. But seeing he is lost, and that no man can tell where
nor how he went away, it is my will that his kingdom remain entire to his
son; who, because he is too young, he not being yet full five years old,
shall be brought up and instructed by the ancient princes and learned men
of the kingdom. And because a realm thus desolate may easily come to ruin,
if the covetousness and avarice of those who by their places are obliged to
administer justice in it be not curbed and restrained, I ordain and will
have it so, that Ponocrates be overseer and superintendent above all his
governors, with whatever power and authority is requisite thereto, and that
he be continually with the child until he find him able and capable to rule
and govern by himself.

Now I must tell you, that you are to understand how a too feeble and
dissolute facility in pardoning evildoers giveth them occasion to commit
wickedness afterwards more readily, upon this pernicious confidence of
receiving favour. I consider that Moses, the meekest man that was in his
time upon the earth, did severely punish the mutinous and seditious people
of Israel. I consider likewise that Julius Caesar, who was so gracious an
emperor that Cicero said of him that his fortune had nothing more excellent
than that he could, and his virtue nothing better than that he would always
save and pardon every man--he, notwithstanding all this, did in certain
places most rigorously punish the authors of rebellion. After the example
of these good men, it is my will and pleasure that you deliver over unto me
before you depart hence, first, that fine fellow Marquet, who was the prime
cause, origin, and groundwork of this war by his vain presumption and
overweening; secondly, his fellow cake-bakers, who were neglective in
checking and reprehending his idle hairbrained humour in the instant time;
and lastly, all the councillors, captains, officers, and domestics of
Picrochole, who had been incendiaries or fomenters of the war by provoking,
praising, or counselling him to come out of his limits thus to trouble us.

Chapter 1.LI.

How the victorious Gargantuists were recompensed after the battle.

When Gargantua had finished his speech, the seditious men whom he required
were delivered up unto him, except Swashbuckler, Dirt-tail, and Smalltrash,
who ran away six hours before the battle--one of them as far as to
Lainiel-neck at one course, another to the valley of Vire, and the third
even unto Logroine, without looking back or taking breath by the way--and
two of the cake-bakers who were slain in the fight. Gargantua did them no
other hurt but that he appointed them to pull at the presses of his
printing-house which he had newly set up. Then those who died there he
caused to be honourably buried in Black-soile valley and Burn-hag field, and
gave order that the wounded should be dressed and had care of in his great
hospital or nosocome. After this, considering the great prejudice done to
the town and its inhabitants, he reimbursed their charges and repaired all
the losses that by their confession upon oath could appear they had
sustained; and, for their better defence and security in times coming
against all sudden uproars and invasions, commanded a strong citadel to be
built there with a competent garrison to maintain it. At his departure he
did very graciously thank all the soldiers of the brigades that had been at
this overthrow, and sent them back to their winter-quarters in their several
stations and garrisons; the decumane legion only excepted, whom in the field
on that day he saw do some great exploit, and their captains also, whom he
brought along with himself unto Grangousier.

At the sight and coming of them, the good man was so joyful, that it is not
possible fully to describe it. He made them a feast the most magnificent,
plentiful, and delicious that ever was seen since the time of the king
Ahasuerus. At the taking up of the table he distributed amongst them his
whole cupboard of plate, which weighed eight hundred thousand and fourteen
bezants (Each bezant is worth five pounds English money.) of gold, in great
antique vessels, huge pots, large basins, big tasses, cups, goblets,
candlesticks, comfit-boxes, and other such plate, all of pure massy gold,
besides the precious stones, enamelling, and workmanship, which by all
men's estimation was more worth than the matter of the gold. Then unto
every one of them out of his coffers caused he to be given the sum of
twelve hundred thousand crowns ready money. And, further, he gave to each
of them for ever and in perpetuity, unless he should happen to decease
without heirs, such castles and neighbouring lands of his as were most
commodious for them. To Ponocrates he gave the rock Clermond; to Gymnast,
the Coudray; to Eudemon, Montpensier; Rivau, to Tolmere, to Ithibolle,
Montsoreau; to Acamas, Cande; Varenes, to Chironacte; Gravot, to Sebast;
Quinquenais, to Alexander; Legre, to Sophrone, and so of his other places.

Chapter 1.LII.

How Gargantua caused to be built for the Monk the Abbey of Theleme.

There was left only the monk to provide for, whom Gargantua would have made
Abbot of Seville, but he refused it. He would have given him the Abbey of
Bourgueil, or of Sanct Florent, which was better, or both, if it pleased
him; but the monk gave him a very peremptory answer, that he would never
take upon him the charge nor government of monks. For how shall I be able,
said he, to rule over others, that have not full power and command of
myself? If you think I have done you, or may hereafter do any acceptable
service, give me leave to found an abbey after my own mind and fancy. The
motion pleased Gargantua very well, who thereupon offered him all the
country of Theleme by the river of Loire till within two leagues of the
great forest of Port-Huaulx. The monk then requested Gargantua to
institute his religious order contrary to all others. First, then, said
Gargantua, you must not build a wall about your convent, for all other
abbeys are strongly walled and mured about. See, said the monk, and not
without cause (seeing wall and mur signify but one and the same thing);
where there is mur before and mur behind, there is store of murmur, envy,
and mutual conspiracy. Moreover, seeing there are certain convents in the
world whereof the custom is, if any woman come in, I mean chaste and honest
women, they immediately sweep the ground which they have trod upon;
therefore was it ordained, that if any man or woman entered into religious
orders should by chance come within this new abbey, all the rooms should be
thoroughly washed and cleansed through which they had passed. And because
in all other monasteries and nunneries all is compassed, limited, and
regulated by hours, it was decreed that in this new structure there should
be neither clock nor dial, but that according to the opportunities and
incident occasions all their hours should be disposed of; for, said
Gargantua, the greatest loss of time that I know is to count the hours.
What good comes of it? Nor can there be any greater dotage in the world
than for one to guide and direct his courses by the sound of a bell, and
not by his own judgment and discretion.

Item, Because at that time they put no women into nunneries but such as
were either purblind, blinkards, lame, crooked, ill-favoured, misshapen,
fools, senseless, spoiled, or corrupt; nor encloistered any men but those
that were either sickly, subject to defluxions, ill-bred louts, simple
sots, or peevish trouble-houses. But to the purpose, said the monk. A
woman that is neither fair nor good, to what use serves she? To make a nun
of, said Gargantua. Yea, said the monk, and to make shirts and smocks.
Therefore was it ordained that into this religious order should be admitted
no women that were not fair, well-featured, and of a sweet disposition; nor
men that were not comely, personable, and well conditioned.

Item, Because in the convents of women men come not but underhand, privily,
and by stealth, it was therefore enacted that in this house there shall be
no women in case there be not men, nor men in case there be not women.

Item, Because both men and women that are received into religious orders
after the expiring of their noviciate or probation year were constrained
and forced perpetually to stay there all the days of their life, it was
therefore ordered that all whatever, men or women, admitted within this
abbey, should have full leave to depart with peace and contentment
whensoever it should seem good to them so to do.

Item, for that the religious men and women did ordinarily make three vows,
to wit, those of chastity, poverty, and obedience, it was therefore
constituted and appointed that in this convent they might be honourably
married, that they might be rich, and live at liberty. In regard of the
legitimate time of the persons to be initiated, and years under and above
which they were not capable of reception, the women were to be admitted
from ten till fifteen, and the men from twelve till eighteen.

Chapter 1.LIII.

How the abbey of the Thelemites was built and endowed.

For the fabric and furniture of the abbey Gargantua caused to be delivered
out in ready money seven-and-twenty hundred thousand, eight hundred and
one-and-thirty of those golden rams of Berry which have a sheep stamped on
the one side and a flowered cross on the other; and for every year, until
the whole work were completed, he allotted threescore nine thousand crowns
of the sun, and as many of the seven stars, to be charged all upon the
receipt of the custom. For the foundation and maintenance thereof for
ever, he settled a perpetual fee-farm-rent of three-and-twenty hundred,
three score and nine thousand, five hundred and fourteen rose nobles,
exempted from all homage, fealty, service, or burden whatsoever, and
payable every year at the gate of the abbey; and of this by letters patent
passed a very good grant. The architecture was in a figure hexagonal, and
in such a fashion that in every one of the six corners there was built a
great round tower of threescore foot in diameter, and were all of a like
form and bigness. Upon the north side ran along the river of Loire, on the
bank whereof was situated the tower called Arctic. Going towards the east,
there was another called Calaer,--the next following Anatole,--the next
Mesembrine,--the next Hesperia, and the last Criere. Every tower was
distant from other the space of three hundred and twelve paces. The whole
edifice was everywhere six storeys high, reckoning the cellars underground
for one. The second was arched after the fashion of a basket-handle; the
rest were ceiled with pure wainscot, flourished with Flanders fretwork, in
the form of the foot of a lamp, and covered above with fine slates, with an
endorsement of lead, carrying the antique figures of little puppets and
animals of all sorts, notably well suited to one another, and gilt,
together with the gutters, which, jutting without the walls from betwixt
the crossbars in a diagonal figure, painted with gold and azure, reached to
the very ground, where they ended into great conduit-pipes, which carried
all away unto the river from under the house.

This same building was a hundred times more sumptuous and magnificent than
ever was Bonnivet, Chambourg, or Chantilly; for there were in it nine
thousand, three hundred and two-and-thirty chambers, every one whereof had
a withdrawing-room, a handsome closet, a wardrobe, an oratory, and neat
passage, leading into a great and spacious hall. Between every tower in
the midst of the said body of building there was a pair of winding, such as
we now call lantern stairs, whereof the steps were part of porphyry, which
is a dark red marble spotted with white, part of Numidian stone, which is a
kind of yellowishly-streaked marble upon various colours, and part of
serpentine marble, with light spots on a dark green ground, each of those
steps being two-and-twenty foot in length and three fingers thick, and the
just number of twelve betwixt every rest, or, as we now term it,
landing-place. In every resting-place were two fair antique arches where
the light came in: and by those they went into a cabinet, made even with
and of the breadth of the said winding, and the reascending above the roofs
of the house ended conically in a pavilion. By that vise or winding they
entered on every side into a great hall, and from the halls into the
chambers. From the Arctic tower unto the Criere were the fair great
libraries in Greek, Latin, Hebrew, French, Italian, and Spanish,
respectively distributed in their several cantons, according to the
diversity of these languages. In the midst there was a wonderful scalier or
winding-stair, the entry whereof was without the house, in a vault or arch
six fathom broad. It was made in such symmetry and largeness that six
men-at-arms with their lances in their rests might together in a breast ride
all up to the very top of all the palace. From the tower Anatole to the
Mesembrine were fair spacious galleries, all coloured over and painted with
the ancient prowesses, histories, and descriptions of the world. In the
midst thereof there was likewise such another ascent and gate as we said
there was on the river-side. Upon that gate was written in great antique
letters that which followeth.

Chapter 1.LIV.

The inscription set upon the great gate of Theleme.

Here enter not vile bigots, hypocrites,
Externally devoted apes, base snites,
Puffed-up, wry-necked beasts, worse than the Huns,
Or Ostrogoths, forerunners of baboons:
Cursed snakes, dissembled varlets, seeming sancts,
Slipshod caffards, beggars pretending wants,
Fat chuffcats, smell-feast knockers, doltish gulls,
Out-strouting cluster-fists, contentious bulls,
Fomenters of divisions and debates,
Elsewhere, not here, make sale of your deceits.

Your filthy trumperies
Stuffed with pernicious lies
(Not worth a bubble),
Would do but trouble
Our earthly paradise,
Your filthy trumperies.

Here enter not attorneys, barristers,
Nor bridle-champing law-practitioners:
Clerks, commissaries, scribes, nor pharisees,
Wilful disturbers of the people's ease:
Judges, destroyers, with an unjust breath,
Of honest men, like dogs, even unto death.
Your salary is at the gibbet-foot:
Go drink there! for we do not here fly out
On those excessive courses, which may draw
A waiting on your courts by suits in law.

Lawsuits, debates, and wrangling
Hence are exiled, and jangling.
Here we are very
Frolic and merry,
And free from all entangling,
Lawsuits, debates, and wrangling.

Here enter not base pinching usurers,
Pelf-lickers, everlasting gatherers,
Gold-graspers, coin-gripers, gulpers of mists,
Niggish deformed sots, who, though your chests
Vast sums of money should to you afford,
Would ne'ertheless add more unto that hoard,
And yet not be content,--you clunchfist dastards,
Insatiable fiends, and Pluto's bastards,
Greedy devourers, chichy sneakbill rogues,
Hell-mastiffs gnaw your bones, you ravenous dogs.

You beastly-looking fellows,
Reason doth plainly tell us
That we should not
To you allot
Room here, but at the gallows,
You beastly-looking fellows.

Here enter not fond makers of demurs
In love adventures, peevish, jealous curs,
Sad pensive dotards, raisers of garboils,
Hags, goblins, ghosts, firebrands of household broils,
Nor drunkards, liars, cowards, cheaters, clowns,
Thieves, cannibals, faces o'ercast with frowns,
Nor lazy slugs, envious, covetous,
Nor blockish, cruel, nor too credulous,--
Here mangy, pocky folks shall have no place,
No ugly lusks, nor persons of disgrace.

Grace, honour, praise, delight,
Here sojourn day and night.
Sound bodies lined
With a good mind,
Do here pursue with might
Grace, honour, praise, delight.

Here enter you, and welcome from our hearts,
All noble sparks, endowed with gallant parts.
This is the glorious place, which bravely shall
Afford wherewith to entertain you all.
Were you a thousand, here you shall not want
For anything; for what you'll ask we'll grant.
Stay here, you lively, jovial, handsome, brisk,
Gay, witty, frolic, cheerful, merry, frisk,
Spruce, jocund, courteous, furtherers of trades,
And, in a word, all worthy gentle blades.

Blades of heroic breasts
Shall taste here of the feasts,
Both privily
And civilly
Of the celestial guests,
Blades of heroic breasts.

Here enter you, pure, honest, faithful, true
Expounders of the Scriptures old and new.
Whose glosses do not blind our reason, but

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