The surueyors dialogue Divided into five bookes
Divided into five Bookes:
Very profitable for all men to peruse, that
have to do with the revenues of Land, or
the manurance, use, or occupation thereof,
both Lords and Tenants: as also and
especially for such as indevor to be
seene in the faculty of surueying
of Mannors, Lands, Te-
By I. N.
A discreet servant shall have rule over an unthrifty
sonne, and he shall divide the heritage among
Voluntas pro facultate.
Printed for Hugh Ashley, dwelling
at S. Magnus corner. 1607.
PUBLISHED FOR Hugh Ashley
To the right Honorable, Robert, Lord Cecill, Baron of Esingdon, Vicecount Crambourne, Earle of Sarum, principall Secretarie to the most high and magnificent Prince, JAMES, King of Great Brittaine, France, and Ireland, Master of his Majesties Wards & Liveries, of his Majesties most Honorable privy Councell, and Knight of the most noble Order of the Gar er.
AS the Earth (right Honorable) was given to man: and man (after divine) was enjoyned the care of earthly things: every ma~ in severall place, qualitie and state, the greatest receiving thence greatest dignities, even to be called Princes of the earth. So, is it not the least regard, that men of whatsoever title or place, should have of the lawfull and just meanes of the preservation and increase of their earthly revenues. [Page] And that especially, by justly atchieving, and rightly using Dominion and Lordship: which principally grow, (omitting publique office and authoritie) by Honors, Mannors, Lands, and Tenants: for, according to the largenesse of revenues, are the meanes to enable the Honorable, to shelter the vertuous distressed, and to cherish such as by desert may challenge regard: And according to their will and power therein, is the vulgar reputation of their Magnificence. But (my good Lord) as mine indevor in this rude Dialogue, tendeth but, as it were, to the plow: So I omit to wade into the impassable censure of Honor and Dignitie, wishing it ever deserved reverence. And as touching Landrevenues, wherwith many are (but especially the Honorable are, or ought to be principally) endowed, I presume onely in this simple Treatise to discourse: So farre (according to my sle der capacitie, and weake experience) as concerneth the ordinary necessary meanes of the maintenance & increase of Land-revenues. And because the true and exact Surueying of Land, is the principall: I have herein indevoured, more of Desire, then of Power, (for the use and benefite of all sorts of men, having to deale with land, both Lords and Tenants,) to shew the necessitie, and simple method thereof, Most humbly intreating your good Lordship (the fruites of whose, and of your honorable Fathers favours, I have many wayes tasted) to [Page] vouchsafe me your Honorable pardon for presuming, and your like patience in accepting at my hands, this little mite; which, were it as great, as any welwishing hart can intend good, it were (together with my poore selfe) in truest service unfainedly your Lordships. It may therfore please the same to accept it: so shall others the more willingly embrace it, or the lesse disgrace it, humbly recommending it to your gracious favour.
To the benevolent Readers, especially to Landlords and Tenants.
AS God in his high and incomprehensible wisedome, doth given unto man two beings, a Spirituall, and Corporal: So hath hee enjoyned him two prescript cares, the one of divine & heve~ly, the other of humane and earthly things. And although the first bee as farre more excellent then the second, as the brightest Sunne exceedeth the blackest darkenesse: yet hath hee not omitted, to give unto all men an expresse commaundement, to bee mindfull of the second: Although it must bee confessed, that no man taking an extraordinary care, can adde, a of himselfe, one iott of increase of any good thing, neither can hee of his owne proper industry, assure himselfe of any part of true prosperitie in this life, yet must he not therefore dissolutely neglect his uttermost lawfull indevour, to advance his own welfare, which he neither can do, without feare and trembling, if hee call to mind the cause why the earth bringeth forth unto us of it owne accord, nothing but the very tokens of our originall disobedience, wherein s imprinted this Motto or Poesy of our shame: With the sweat of thy face thou shalt eate thy bread, al the dayes of thy life. And this without exception of persons. Whereby it appeareth, that none is exempted from labour and travaile, in one [Page] kind or other to maintaine his estate here. Our Fathers of fame began it. Adam digged the Earth, and manured it. Tubal wrought in Mettals. Noah planted a Vineyard. Abraham, Lot, Moses, David, Elizeus, Amos, and many other godly and great men were Shepheards. Gydeon was a Thresher of Corne. Jacob and his sonnes the Patriarkes, were Herdesmen. Joseph a Purueyor of Corne in Egypt. Paul made Tents. Mathew was a Customer, or Tollga therer. Peter, Andrew and others were Fishermen. And Saul a keeper of Asses. If these men began the way of labour in so many kinds, who may say he is free in one kind or other? And hee that in respect of his greatnes of birth or wealth, will pretend a priviledge of idlenes, or vaine and unprofitable exercises, doth discover his forgetfulnes, or neglect of the dutie in earth, which every man, even the greatest oweth unto the Commonwealth, his owne family and posteritie. And hee is censured even by the mouth of God, Worse then an Infidell, that neglecteth these duties. And none is excused, or exempted out of this Law of provision for his familie, be hee never so high or meane; not that such men as are honorable by byrth, office or advancement, should till the earth, or be Shepheards or Herdsmen. But that they should, according to their greatnes, execute great place in the Commonwealth, whereof (after the care of Divine things, in respect of God that gave them their greatnes) they should have care to performe some service, in respect of the King, under whome they enjoy their greatnes: To shew love and diligent regard, to ayd their inferiours, in respect of whome they have the imputation of their greatnesse. To bee provident in providing things necessarie for their Families, that have an interest to partake of their greatnes. And lastly, in respect [Page] of their posterities, that are to becom the more great by their greatnesse. And how can they do thus, unlesse they looke into, and use the meanes of the increase and preservation of their greatnesse? And for as much as the same consisteth, for the most part, in the revenewes of land: what greater care ought they to have, then to maintaine and lawfully to augment the same? which decaying, their Honor and honorable reputation diminisheth. To preserve or augment Revenues, there must be meanes: the meanes are wrought by Knowledge; Knowledge had by Experience; Experience by view, and due observation of the particulars, by which Revenues doe, or may arise. Wherein are to bee considered the Quantities, and Qualities of Land, with the present Rents, and estimate values, by a reasonable improovement: which duly found, to have a due regard to proportion yeerely distributions and expendings, with the annuall Incoms, in such sort, as alwayes the present yeere may rather adde unto the next, then the next to bee charged with the yeere past. For when the present yeere shall expend more then the Revenues of the same may beare, the yeere following cannot but be surcharged: and so will it surcharge the future so long, that either he shall be forced to strike the topsayle of his improvident wasting, in time; or at length, through the furious blasts of excessive prodigalitie, be blown under the water of disability, by overswelling the sayles of his vainglory. I speake not this in the way of attachment, but of prevention. And so I trust, all men will take it, and accept of my poore indevour in this kind, considering that necessary it is, that al me~ should know what it is to have revenewes, namely, first to know them, & then to use the~ to their own advancement, and to the good of others. And because it is not the worke of the Honorable, & of [Page] such as have high & serious commonwealth imploiments, to bee personal actors of their owne affaires in this kind, they are to use the service of such as are fit in knowledge, and just in dealing, to travel in this kind of busines, by whose faithfull and sincere informations, they may know what is just and right to be done and demanded: And in al favour and clemencie to deale with such, as are in this manner within the compasse of their commands, and by whom and by whose labours they maintaine their greatnes: for (no doubt) there is none but well considereth, that how great or powerful soever he be in la~d revenues, it is brought in unto him by the labours of inferiour tenants: yea, the King consisteth by the field that is tilled. And there is none of these inferiours, of ordinary discretion, but well knoweth, that what hee injoyeth, is by the favour of his Lord in a sort: And therefore ought there to bee such a mutuall concurrence of love and obedience in the one, and of ayd and protection in the other, as no hard measure offered by the superiour, should make a just breach of the loyaltie of the inferiour: which kind of union is no waies better preserved and continued between the Lord and tenants, then by the Lords true knowledge of the particulars that every tenant holdeth, & a favorable course in fines and rents: and by the tenants love and thankfulnes in al readie service and dutie towards the Lord. And to that end, it is (no doubt) expedient, that Lords of tenants have due regard of their owne estates, namely of the particulars of all their tenants landes, and that by a due, true, and exact view and suruey of the same, to the end the Lord be not abused, nor the tenants wronged & grieved by false informations, which co~monly grow by privat Inteligencers, & never by just Surueyors. And because the office of a Surueior (duly waid) is an [Page] office both necessary, expedient, & of trust. It behoveth him to be first honestly and uprightly minded, and next, skilfull and judicious in the facultie. Then can he not, but by industrie and diligence, produce an exact discoverie and performance of the worke he undertaketh, to the true information of the Lord, whose benefite and uttermost lawfull profite he is to seeke, in a good conscience, disswading him yet from distastefull Auarice, the greatest blemish that can befall a man, seeking true reputation and renowne, by his revenues. For too much severitie afflicteth the hearts of poore Tenants, who (by common experience) are found to be more firmely knit in the band of true dutie, loyall affection, and readie service unto their Lords, by their Lords frugalitie, sweetened sometimes with the chearefull drops of true liberalitie, then by the extreames of austeritie, vaine prodigalitie, or compulsive exactions. And yet not so, as Lords of Tenants should be so overswayed with abused lenitie, or carelesse looking into their owne, as may breed contempt in Tenants: but rather that they should keepe such an eeven, and equall hand over their Tenants, as may continue mutuall love, and in them a loving feare: And not to seeke the increase of revenues so much for vaine glories, as for vertues maintenance. Which will appeare by doing good to deservers, by their vertuous life. A worke of true vertue, when contrarily, vaineglorie seeketh idle and vaine reputation, by unjustly atchieving, and either prodigally consuming, or too miserably increasing Revenewes, which I must leave to everie mans owne fancie, wishing all to fashion their waies in this kind, to Gods glory, the Kings service, the good of the Commonwealth, and to other such ends, for which God hath given them greatest earthly blessings; reco~mending unto you this simple [Page] rude lumpe, of which, if some more skilfull, will bestow the relicking, & bring it to his true shape, my selfe with many others, should thankfully imbrace it. In the meane time friendly accept it, and in kindnes afford sparing reproofe.
Eccles. 7.13. Wisedome is good with an inheritance.
The Printer to the friendly Reader.
THe Author ot being present at the examination of the proofes, sundry faults have escaped, by mistaking the copie, which faults the Author s nce, for the most part hath reformed, and if you find any not corrected, I pray with patience beare it, and use the meanes to reforme it.
I pray the Reader to correct these faults committed in Printing, in absence of the Author. vz.
Page 5. line 20. for under, read over. pa. 7. li. 27. for farme, read same. p. 8. l. 15. for rudely, read readily. ibid. l. 32. for estimate, read extenuate. p. 9. l. 31. for there, read their. p. 12. l. 3. for Surueyors, read Surueyes. p. 14. l. 4. for corruption, read compasse. p. 45. l. 27. for Mannors, read mannor. p. 53. l. 21. for sine, read sine. p. 58. l. 9. for service, read fee. p. 62. l. 34. for promise, read proviso. p. 119. l. 19. for former, read forme. p. 88. l. 2. for leaser, read leasee. p. 76. l. 16. for person, read purses. p. 74. l. 32. for our, read one. p. 44. l. 28. for can, read ran. page 39. line 21. for affirmeth, read assumeth.
1. The Surueyors Dialogue, shewing the different natures of grounds, how they may be imployed, how they may be bettered, reformed, and amended. The fifth Booke.
Bai. I Perceive, Sir, you are now at some leasure, you are walking abroad to take the ayre, after your long and tedious sitting, & I thinke indéed you are wearie.
Sur. I am somewhat wearie: but a man that undertaketh a businesse, must apply it, and not be wearie, or at least, not to seeme to be so.
Bai. But me thinkes, you apply it too hard, you might sometimes ease you, and give your selfe to some game for recreation.
Sur. They that are idle, may take their pleasures in gaming: but such as are called to live by their labors, and have a delight therin, & (as all men ought) take pleasure, and thinke it a pleasing sport, to get meanes by their lawfull labors to live.
Bai. You say truth indéed: for the old Proverbe is, Dulcis labor cum lucro. But I pray you, whither walke you?
Sur. Into this next peece of ground.
Bai. Nay, it is an ill ground to walke in: for it is full of bogges, a very moorish plot, overcome with wéedes, and indeed, is of no use.
Sur. I therefore go to see it, and worthily to attach you the Lords Baily, of remisnesse & negligent looking unto the Lords profit, suffering such a peece of ground as this, to lye idle and waste, and to foster [Page 186] nothing but bogges, Sedges, Flagges, Rushes, and such superfluous and noysome weedes: where, if it were duly drained, and carefully husbanded, it would make good meddow in short time.
Bayly. I thinke that impossible: for there be many such plots you see in this levell, and in many mens occupations, and some of them thinke themselves good husbands, I can tell you: and they sée, that it is a matter of difficulty and charge, and therfore they thinke, and so do I, that it is to no purpose to begin to amend it.
Sur. I thinke they have more land, then they, or you have experience how to convert to best use, they their owne, and you your Lords.
Bayly. If you be so skilfull, I pray tell me for the Lords profite, how it may be amended.
Sur. If you be ignorant how to amend it, and simply desire to learne, it were a fault in me to conceale from you the meanes how to do it. But if you be carelesse or wilfull, it were good to leave you in your ignorance, and to informe the Lord of your unfitnesse, that a more skilfull might take the place.
Bayly. That is the woorst that you can do. But I trust I may be a Bayly good inough, & yet want one part of that, which my place requireth to perform .
Sur. Even as well as a horse may be said to travell well inough, and yet lacke one legge.
Bai. I would be sorie, that comparison should hold: for than I could not but confesse, that I were a same officer, as there be in other kinds, uen of your owne profession many. But, I am not onely not wilful, but I am willing to learne: and I do not thinke any man so absolute in his place and calling, but he may learne some point of his function, if at least he will confesse his owne imperfections.
Sur. Whether he verbally confesse them or not, the execution will bewray them, and the world will observe them in him. And therefore it behooveth all such as undertake, and enter into any office or function, to examine the duties appertaining to such an office: and finding his fitnesse or unfitnesse, to performe it: so to leave or take, (though few stagger at any:) If his abilitie be weake, reason and duty may move him to seeke expedient knowledge, lest he shame himselfe, and slander the place he is in. And therefore I wish you to aske advice, not onely in this case, but in all other belonging to your charge. For as it is commendable to know more and more: so is it no shame to aske often.
Bay. I pray you then tell me, Sir, how must this péece of ground be handled, to be made meddow (as you say it will be made) or good pasture.
Sur. It must be drained.
Bayly. If that be all, I thinke, I can say it is to little purpose: for I have made trenches to that end, as you may sée where and how. But it became little or nothing the better, and therefore I thinke, cost will be but cast away upon it.
Sur. It is a true Proverbe: Ignorance is an enemy to art and experience. What you did, it may be, you had good will to do the Lord service in it: but the course you tooke, was not in the right kind. It is not enough to make such ditches, as appeareth you have done, they are too few & too wide. Neither did you rightly observe the fall of the water.
Baylie. That were hard to be done in such a place as this, where the water hath no fall at all, neither is ye water séene much, as you sée, but it is the moistnes of the earth, that arres the land.
Sur. But the moisture comes by water, and the water is swallowed up in this spungle ground, and [Page 188] lyes unseene: ye if you marke it well, you may observe, which way it re les: for as you see, though this plot of ground be very levell in apparence, yet if it were tried by a true levell, it would be found declining towards yonder forlorne brooke, which you see is stop up with weedes, that i permitteth not the water convenient passe. Therefore the first worke is, to rid the sewer or chiefe watercourse, and then shall you see, that the grounds neere the cleansed brooke, will become more drie, by the moisture soking into the sewer: then make your other draines, using discretion therein, namely, in cutting them streight, from the most boggie places, to the maine brooke, every of them as it were paralelly: then cut you some other draines sloping, which may carry the water into these first draines, which againe will convey it into the maine.
Bayly. You see the ditches that I made, they were broade enough and deepe, fit to convey much water, yet they did no good: can you prescribe a better forme.
Sur. Your ditches, for the forme, were too broad, and (as it seemes) too deepe, and that makes the water to stand in them, and being broad above, and narrow in the bottome, makes the loose earth to fall in and choake the ditch. But if you will make profitable draines, you must first observe, how the water will runne in them: for so will it appeare presently, and to make them as narrow above, as at the bottome, which at the most must not be above one foot and a halfe broad , and the crust of the earth will hold, that the earth fall not in againe. So will it in short time make it appeare, that the moisture will decay, and the grounds become more drie, and as it becomes, freed of the superfluous moisture: so will the weedes that are nourished by it, beginne [Page 189]to wither, as they are deprived of their nouriture, which is too much water, which breedeth too much cold: and too much cold is the life of such weeds as increase in this ground: and therefore the weedes should be often cut downe in the spring time, and by that meanes they will consume, and better grasse come in their steade: and the better, if cattle feed the ground, upon the draining, as bare as may be.
Bayly. But the raines you speake of, may be dangerous for cattle, especially for shéepe and lambes.
Sur. Not, if they be kept alwaies cleansed, and open, that sheepe and cattle may see them: for the bigger sort may steppe over them, and the lesser may have little bridges of the same crust, by undermining the earth some three or foure foote, that the water may passe under.
Bail. Indéed, if the crust of the earth will hold it, this course is necessary. But there is much land in England lost for want of draining, as the Fennes and low grounds in Lincoln-shire, Cambridg-shire, Northfolke, and other places, which I did thinke impossible ever to be made dry, by the art or industry of man. And yet as I heare, much of it is made lately firme ground, by the skill of one Captaine Lovell, and by M. William Englebert an excellent Ingenor. And truly it is much to their owne commendation, and to the common good of the inhabitants néere. But these grounds are not drained by such meanes as you speake of.
Sur. Indeed, the draines are of unlike quantitie, but like in qualitie: one and the same rule of reason doth worke both the one and the other. But to say truly unto thee, the people of those countries (especially [Page 190] the poorer sort) where this kind of publike benefite is thus gotten, had rather have the want by their Fathers error, then to reape good, and more plenty by other mens art and charge. And in their conceits they had rather catch a Pike, then feede an Oxe.
Bayly. They are either very unwise, or very wilful. But (no doubt) authority is above such country wilfulnesse, and doth or may injoyne them, for the common weale, to consent and yeeld all ayde in the businesse. But if they will needes fish and foole, and refuse rich reléefe, we will leave them to their wils, till reason in themselves, or compulsion bring them to a more generall desire of so great a blessing.
Sur. Let it be so: What Alders are in the next ground?
Baylie. They are the Lords too, Sir: but the ground is so rotten, that no cattle can féed in it.
Sur. The Alder tree is enemy to all grounds where it growes: for the root thereof is of that nature, that it draweth to it so much moisture to nourish it selfe, as the ground neere it, is good for no other use.
Baily. Do you thinke this ground would be good, if the trées were gone?
Sur. Yes: for commonly the ground is good enough of it selfe, onely it is impaired by this kind of wooe: and therefore if the cause were taken away, the effect would die.
Bayly. Then will I cause them to be stocked up.
Sur. Nay, first it behooveth you to consider, whether it be expedient or not: for although this tree be not friendly to pasture, meddow, or arable land, [Page 191] yet it yeelds her due commodity too, without whose ayde, in some places where other wood is scant, men can hardly husband their lands without this. For of it they make many necessary implements of husbandrie, as Ladders, Rayles, Hop poles, Plow-stuffe, and Handles for many tooles, besides fiering.
Bayly. If it be so commodious, it is not onely not good to stocke them, but expedient to cherish them, and where none are, to plant.
Sur. There is great difference betweene necessitie and the super abundance of every necessarie. For want is a great commander, & inforceth oftentimes: and in many places they desire and search for that, which will in the time of plentie meerely neglecteth. And therefore where none of this kind of wood groweth, (the place destitute of other meanes, and fit for this kind of commoditie) wil may be forced to give place to occasion: as in other things.
Bayly. I have heard, that this kind of wood is also good to make the foundations of buildings, in rivers, fennes, and standing waters, as also piles for many purposes in moorish and wet grounds.
Sur. It is true: this kind of wood is of greater continuance in watry places, then any other timber: for it is observed, that in these places it seldome or never rots.
Bayly. It loved the water and moisture well in growing, and therefore it brooketh it the better, being laid in it. But I thinke the Firre-tree is much or the same nature: for I have seene infinite many of th m, taken out of he earth in a moorish ground in Shropshire, betweene the Lordships of Olwestry, [Page 192]and Elsemere, which (as is supposed) have lien in the moist earth ever since the Floud, and being daily taken up, the people make walking-staves & pikes of them, firme and strong, and use the chips in stead of candles in poore houses: so fat is the wood to this day, and the smell also strong and swéet.
Sur. I know the place well, where I saw pales made of an Oke taken out of the same ground, of the same continuance, firme and strong, blacke as Ibony, and might have fitly bene employed to better uses: and I take it, that most wood will last long under the earth, where it never taketh the open ayre. But the wood now most in use for the purposes abovesaid, is Alder and Elme.
Bayly. May a man sow the séedes of the Alder?
Sur. It beareth a kind of seed, yet some have affirmed the contrarie. But the seeds will hardly grow by art, though by nature they may. The branches of the tree and the rootes, are aptest to grow, if they be set so, as the water & moisture may be above the plant: for it delighteth only in the moistest grounds. Is not this next close the Lords, called Broad-med dow?
Bayly. It is for I perceive you have a good memory being but once, and to long since, upon the ground.
Sur. It is most necessary for a Surueyor to reme~ber what he hath observed, and to consider well the natures and qualities of all kinds of grounds, and to informe the Lord, of the meanes how to better his estate by lawfull meanes, especially in bettering his own demeisnes. So shall he the lesse need to surcharge his tenants by uncharitable exactions. And forasmuch as of all other grounds, none are (of their own nature) so profitable, and lesse chargeable, as meddow grounds, which are alwaies readie to benefite [Page 193] the owner, summer and winter, they especially are to be regarded.
Bail. That is true indéede, and peradventure it take the name of the readinesse: for we call it in Latine Pratum, as if it were semper paratum, either with the fleeze for ay, or with the pasture to féede: and this meddow wherein now we are, is the best meddow that I know: and I thinke, for swéetnesse and burden, there is not a better in England.
Sur. You do well to advance the credite of the Lords land, and you speake, I thinke, as you conceive, because you are not acquainted with the meddowes, upon Drue-banke, in Tan Deane, upon Seavern-side, Allermore, the Lords meddow, in Crediton, and the meddowes about the Welch-poole, and many other places, too tedious to recite now.
Bai. These he like are made so good by art, but naturally, I thinke, this may match the best of them.
Sur. Indeed, meddowes very meane by nature, may be made excellent by charge: but they will decay, unlesse they be alwaies releeved. But these that I speake of, require little or no helpe at the owners hand, onely the ayde of these rivers overflowing, do feed them fat, gives great burden, and very sweet.
Bayly. These yearely overflowings of fat waters after flouds, no doubt, are very beneficiall, as appeareth by the annale and yearely overflowing of the river Nilus in Egypt, which maketh the adiacent grounds so fat and fruitfull, as they be famous through the world for their fertility, and was allotted to Josephs brethren in Egypt.
Sur. You speake of a matter wonderfull in the conceits of some, that the river should so overflow in the summer, and yet it never raines in those parts at any time of the yeare.
Bai. So I have heard indeede: and that the flouds grow in the heate of the yeere about harvest, betwéene Julie, and September, with the snowe melting, that falls in the winter time, among the Mountaines.
Sur. We have in England matter more strange, as the river neere Chichester in Sussex, called the Lavent, which in the winter is drie, and in the driest Summer, f ll to her banckes: So is the Leam, a river in Barkeshire, neere Leambourn.
Baily That is strange indéede: one studious in naturall Philosophie, could tell the cause of this.
Sur. I take it to bee, because they are only fed with springs, which runne only, when springs are at the highest. And that also is the reason, why many bournes breake out of the earth in sundry places, as we may reade it hath done somtimes neere Merga e, in Hartfordshire, corruptly called Market, and neere Croydon in Surrie, neere Patcham in Sussex, and in many other places in this Realme: which breaketh foorth suddenly out of the driest hills, in Summer.
Bay. Because you speake of Angleton, I can assure you, there is a Well, that sometimes yeldeth water, which when you wash your hands with, it smelleth like violets. Some would (no doubt) give much for such excellent water.
Sur. Though the smell be sweete, I hold not the water so wholesome: for we doubt it is in it selfe, Levis putredo, a kind of light putrifaction, whi h passing lightly by the sence of smelling, deceiveth the sence, which if it tooke a more serious note of it, would find t a kind of stincke: as your purest muske and C uet, the more neerer the sence it commeth, and the more the source chargeth it selfe with the [Page 195]whole sent, the more lothsome it will proove. But these are things comming into our talke by the way: let us returne to our matter of meddowes, the cause of whose goodnes is the soyle, and overflowing, with the most muddy water.
Bay. No doubt, it is an admirable helpe unto them: nay, I by small experience that I have found, can tell you a pretie paradoxe, how say you to this? Boggy and spungy ground, whereof we discoursed before, though in it owne nature it be too moist, yet, if it be overflowed with water often, it wil settle and become firme: which howsoever in my poore understanding, it should seeme opposite to reason, that water should helpe watery ground, yet experience findeth it so.
Sur. All overflowing waters doe bring a slymy and fat substance with them, and leave it behind them: which together with the working of the water, thorowe the spungie ground you speake of, worketh that effect in all grounds, where it comes.
Bai. But water cannot be brought into all kinds of boggy grounds, nor into all kinds of meddowes.
Sur. No, for there are two sorts of meddowes, lowe & moist, and upland, and dry meddowes, of these kinds the lowe is commonly the best: because they are aptest to receive these falling and swelling waters, which for the most part brings fatnes with it: and besides, it moistneth the ground, and makes the grasse to growe cheerefull: yet howsoever fat & fruitefull they be, continuall mooving yeerely without intermission, may weaken them and impaire their goodnes, and will require some helpe, unlesse they be such meddowes as I recommended unto you ye while, that are so fed with fat overflowing [Page 196]waters, as do still maintaine them in strength.
Bai. Then must the upland meddow, by often and continuall sheering, needes decay.
Sur. The upland meddowes have but the name of meddowes: for indeed, they are but the best pasture grounds, laid for hay. And to distinguish betweene that kind of meddow and pasture ground, or betweene pasture and arable, is friuolous: for that kind of meddow is most properly pasture, and all pasture grounds may be tilled. For when we say arable, it is as much, as if we said, it is subject to the plow, or land which may be plowed: and why then may not a man say, that which is now pasture, is arable? that is, convenient to be tilled. And on the contrarie, that which is now tilled, may be pasturable: namely, apt to graze, and to feede cattle?
Bai. You proove, that it is superfluous in manner, to distinguish the qualities of grounds.
Sur. I confesse, a Surueyor may note the quality of every kind, as he findeth it in the time of his perambulation and view. But peradventure, the next yeere, he that comes to distinguish them, may enter them cleane contrarie to the former. And therefore it is not amisse, in all such entries, to adde the word (now:) as to say, now tilled, or now pasture, now used for meddow: unlesse it be low meddow alwayes mowne. But he that shall enter a peece of upland ground, (though it be sometimes mowne) under the name of meddow, erreth in his entry. But for that, let all men follow their owne fancies. But because we speake of upland meddowes, we will accept all mowable grounds in that sence. And of such I will first speake. They are either of a clay soile, and so naturally fat, or stiffe: or a sandy earth inriched [Page 197] and made fat by industrie: and both of these by moving yearely without intermission, and supply of helpe, may be so impaired, as it will yeeld little benefite to the owner. The nature therefore of every ground must be considered: for the upland and high ground, may be also watrie, and consequently cold and moist, which kind of grounds are generally clay: for a sandy and gravelly ground lying high, and depending, is seldome or never found moist by nature, but drie, and consequently hot. So that all upland grounds are commonly either too cold and moist, o too hot and drie: either of which must have his severall helpe. For as the constitution of a mans bodie, is found by the effects of fatnesse, leanenesse, heate and cold: So do the earths discover their natures by their fruite, which nature causeth them to bring foorth in infinite kinds. The cold and watry grounds yeeld long, but foure and unprofitable grasse, rushes, and rancke Mosse: which kind of ground must be cured, if need require, with draines, but commonly these grounds are of clay: and clay will never give way, or evacuation to the water, because the ground is hard and stiffe, contrarie to the open and spungy ground, which is thin and open. And therefore the hottest chalk or lime, is best to kill the foure grasse, & unprofitable mosse. So is coledust ashes, & chimney foote, if sufficient quantity could be gotten: & after these things thus laid, it is expedie~t to give it a tilth or two, & then to let it lie againe, if it be to be used for meddow or pasture. And for the other grounds which are hot and drie by nature, the contrary is to be used, by using meanes to coole the heate; and to moisten the drinesse: and that i by bestowing some fat and slimy Marle upon them, which will much cherish & revive the parched grasse, and kill the hungry mosse, that groweth by the drinesse of the , as a scurfe or [Page 198]tetter on the body, by the heate that proceedeth of a salt humor. The natures of these two kindes of grounds are also found out, whether they be cold & moist, or hot, and drie, by the quantitie, and qualitie of their fruits, as the seasons of the yeere be drie or moist: for that ground that groweth best in a moist yeere, is hot and drie. The clay ground in a moist yeere (if it be not too moist) may be also comforted, because in too drie a yeere, the clay becommeth so strongly bound, that the tender grasse can hardly make way, through the obdurate earth: whereas moderate moisture molifieth the same, cherisheth the roote, and gives way for the grasse: and if it have too much moisture, it becommeth so slimie, and the rootes so drenched, as it turneth the grasse into a spirie kind, and that but short, and by the cold that commeth of the too much moisture, it increaseth rushes aboundantly, and thicke mosse: So that it appeareth, that the seasons of the yeere doe either helpe or hinder the increase of all kinds of grounds: which the art or industry of man cannot prevent. For many times the helpes, that man useth to assist and helpe nature, doe binder it: as where compost and stable soile is layd upon a drie ground, reserved for grasse, if a drie yeere followe, the heate of the soile and the drinesse of the yeere, doe so impoverish the grasse, that it yeeldeth the owner lesse increase, then if he had bestowed no soile at all: yet men ought not to be remisse, in soiling their lands: for if it prevaile not in one yeere, they shall find it at another time very profitable: and for all seasons, I perswade men to make meanes, where it may bee done, to induce out of streetes, lands, wayes, and ditches, all the water, that by some extraordinarie raine passeth through them, into their grounds, by making some little dam, or barre to drawe them into [Page 199] to their grounds: for the matter which this water bringeth with it, is commonly so rich and fat, as it yeeldeth a marvailous refection to all the grounds, high or lowe, into which it may be brought: which kind of husbandry is much used in Somerset, Devon & Cornwall, to their admirable advantage, and in some other place heere, and there, but not so generally, as in providence men might.
Bay. This is a good course, no doubt, in places where it may be put in execution: but as you say, all men are not so provident, and painefull, which indéede is a great fault, and wherein I my selfe, I confesse, have béene culpable: but I will be more carefull aswell in that, as in other things, whereof you have put me in minde. And truly I thinke, there is much profit. wilfully lost in many places by negligence, want of skill, and sparing of some small charge. You have hitherunto spoken only of upland meddowe grounds: but you devided meddowes into two sorts: what say you to the second, namely lowe meddowes? for I have seene and observed as great defects in them, by reason of their too often mooving without rest, as may require some consideration how to repaire them: for some of these grounds are as much annoyd by too much moisture, as the upland with the want of it.
Sur. For the too much moisture, if it be but in the winter season, and continue but untill the middle or end of Aprill, it doth not only no harme, but good: for if you marke and observe it well, you seldome or never see bogges, where the water overflowes, and stands in the winter time. But if it be more permanent, and of longer stay, there must be meanes used for the evacuation: for in many places you may perceive certaine lowe places in meddowe grounds, where if the water once take a standing, it [Page 200]will cause the ground to sinke more and more, and therefore that kind of water must be vented betimes: for otherwise it killeth the grasse, & makes the place bare in a drie summer, when the water is gone, or else it will cause such a coldnesse to the earth, as it will bring foorth more rushes then grasse. And therefore it must be a principall care, to have all rivers, sewers, and water draines, well cleansed and scoured, that upon occasion, when time requireth, when you will convey the water from the meddowes, it may have a due current.
Bay. But estoples of water courses, do in some places grow by such meanes, as one private man or two cannot by force or discretion make remedy. As when sewers be common, sometime betwéene Lordship Lordship, parish and p rish, or betwéene a multitude among whom it is alwaies séene, some wil be perverse, and wilful; and hinder the best publike action that is, though the doing of it be never so profitable to themselves, and the omitting, hindrance. Besides this, you see upon divers streame Water-mils, which by reason of their high pitch, bat backe the water that shuld have cleere passe: so that sondry mens grounds are drowned, even untill, and at the time of haying. And for the most part, thes mils do appertaine to great persons, who rather then they will lose a penny o their profite, will hazard the losse of a pound to poore men. What remedie is these for any of these mischiefes?
Sur. For every of them the lawe hath provided remedie. And the greatest hindrance is either neglect or feare of complaine 2. and upon complaint in places, and to persons appointed to reforme neglect of justice to be executed, or lawdayes, [Page 201] generall Sessions, Commissioners of Sewers, and actions at the common Law, are provided to right these wrongs: therefore speake no more of this, as matter of impeachment of the grounds, which of themselves are naturally good or evill. But rather seeke the meanes to better and helpe the ground, which, as you object, is weakned by ofte~ cutting. When a man observeth such decay in his meddowe, let it lie some few yeeres to pasture, and be eaten very lowe, it will procure some heate againe. If not, take the fattest earth that may be gotten, & let it lie a yeere if you can, to dissolve, and when it is drie and will crumble small, mingle it with good and well fatted dung, and lay them a while in a heape, untill they be sufficiently incorporated, which will bee in one winter, then carrie it into your meddowe about the beginning of March, or before, and then cast it abroad upon the meddowes, not too thicke, nor the clods too great, it will revive the weakned mould, and make the grasse spring againe very freshly.
Bai. I thinke this bee good also for barraine pasture.
Sur. It is very excellent for pasture, for hee that will bestowe the cost, shall find his recompence in short time.
Bayly. I see in some meddowes gaully places, where little or no grasse at al groweth, by reason (as I take it,) of the too long standing of the water, for such places are commonly low where the water standeth not having bent to passe away, and therefore meanes must be first made for the evacuation of the water for the continuall standing of the water consumeth the grasse, and makes the place bare, and sinketh it.
Sur. In such a place therefore, sow in the Spring time some hay seed, especially the seed of the claver [Page 202] grasse, or the grasse hony-suckle, and other seeds that fall out of the finest and purest hay: And in the sowing of it, mingle with it some good earth: But sow not the hony-suckle grasse in too moist a ground, for it liketh it not.
Bayly. Is it not good sometimes to ill and sow the meddow grounds?
Sur. Yes, upon good occasion, as you find by the slender croppe of hay it beareth in a seasonable summer, that the ground begins to faint, as it were under the burthen of continuall bearing, fallow it, and let it lie a whole summer, and in the fall of the leafe plow it againe, and at the season sow it with pease or fetches, next with wheat, and lastly with fetches and hay dust, laying it as plaine and levell as you can. Then seed it the next summer, and after that, hayn it and mowe it, and within a yeere or two, the grasse will be fat, sweet and good.
Bayly. I have séene meddowes, as wel as other arable landes, namely, the crust of the earth cut in turffes and burned, and so sowne as aforesaid.
Sur. This kind of husbandry is neither usuall nor expedient in all places, especially in meddowe grounds, unlesse the meddowes bee too much overgrowne with mosse, through too much moysture & colde: yet in deed I have seene it in some part of Shropshire. But I have thought it rather done for the corne sake, then for reformation of the meddowe.
Bay. But I like not this husbandry in any sort, in good meddow grounds.
Sur. You need not feare it, for experience hath found, that it hurteth no kind of ground. But I leave every man to his owne fancie.
Bayly. Surely, I thinke there needs no helpe to good meddowe grounds, for it requireth small travaile, and lesse charge, and of all grounds (as was sayd in the beginning of our speech, it is most beneficiall.
Sur. Every thing hath his time and course, a growing, a perfection, and decay. And the best ground may bee overcharged, the plowe, and the sithe will weaken, if there bee no helpes by Art, or Nature: for though nature wake & worke when we sleepe, and are idle, yet it often faileth, when wit and industry must worke and supply what Nature leaveth. And therefore he that hath best meddow grounds, if he be a good husband, will observe how they stand in force, or weaknes, and accordingly indevour to helpe the defects: hee must neither sleep for the too much heat in Summer, nor keepe house in Winter for the too much cold: but both Winter and Summer give such attendance and ayd unto his land, as in discretion he shall find most behoovefull: for land is like the body: if it be not fed with nurriture, and comforted and adorned with the most expedient commodities, it will pine away, and become forlorne, as the mind that hath no rest or recreation, waxeth lumpish and heavy. So that ground that wanteth due disposing and right manurance, waxeth out of kind; even the best meddowes will become ragged and full of unprofitable weeds, if it bee not cut and eaten; some will become too moist, and so growe to boggs; some too drie, and so to a hungry mosse. And therefore according to the naturall or urged inclynation, men are to endevour to prepare preservations, or reformations, namely, to keepe the good in good case, and to bring the evill to a better state. If it bee too moyst, you must seeke to drie it: if too drie, you must use meanes [Page 204]to moysten it.
Bayly. What if there bee such places in a meddowe, as neither Art nor charge can conveniently make drie, or fit for grasse, as I know many, and (no doubt) so doe you, which will bee unprofitable, whatsoever course be taken, unles more charge bee layd upon it, then it can requite?
Sur. In such places the best course is to plant willowes red or white, namely, in every voyd plot of low ground that is too moyst, and of little use to plant them, as also neere unto, and in hedgerowes: for those kindes of willowes are very profitable, and little hurtfull, and delight most in watrie places, where profitable and sweet grasse likes not: They growe speedily, and beare much, and serve for many uses in husbandrie.
Bay In this indeed I can approve your Judgement by mine owne Art and experience: for about seven or eight yeeres since, I set a certaine number of these kindes of Willow poles, shaped and cut for the purpose, and in deed I cut them and set them in a drie time, for I can tell you, although they love the water well in their growing, wet is an enemie nto them, being cut from the tree: and in the time of their replanting, some I set in the end of January, some in the beginning of February, when the extremity of the cold is neere gone. I set some in a meddow by a ryvers side, some in a bottome, where the water falls most in the time of raine, and I set every one of them sixe foote asunder, and for three yeeres space I kept them pruned verie carefully: and at this present time they have heads and branches of verie great [Page 205] burden, every thrée trées néere a loade of wood. And I do not thinke, but every five or sixe yéeres will affoord as much and more: for as the body of the tree doth increase, the branches will augment in greatnesse: and this without losse of much ground, or hindrance to the grasse. Nay, I find that under these trees, the grasse is most rancke and fruitefull, not onely by reason of the dropping of the boughes, but by the fal of the leafe in Autumne, as also by the cattle sheltring and shadowing under them. And moreover, I have planted an Ozier hope, (for so they call it in Essex, and in some places an Ozier bed) in a surrounded ground, fit before for no use, for the too much moisture and overflowing of it. And to tell you truly, I thinke, it yeeldeth me now a greater benefite yeerely, acre for acre, then an acre of best wheate: and that without any great travell or charge, and the ordinary increase seldome sayling. Onely I find, that this kind of trée brooketh not the shadow of any other tree, but delighteth in the open ayre, and in the Sunne beames: so imperiall or sullen is this little plant. And truly I conceive, that men that have such grounds, as befit this kind of commoditie, come short of good husbands, if they plant them not.
Sur. You say in this very truly: and it is a great shame for many capable wits, and able bodies, that they having livings and leysure, imploy neither of them to their uttermost profitable ends: for lands is given to man, to the end he should till it, manure it, and dresse it: namely, he should set, sow, and plant upon it, and in due discretion to convert every place to his fittest fruite. For I am of opinion, that there is no kind of soile, be it never so wild, boggy, clay, or [Page 206] sandie, but will yeeld one kind of beneficiall fruite or other.
Bail. Nay, by your leave, I thinke, the pib les or beach stones upon the sea coast, about Orford Nesse in Suff. the Camber in Sussex, and such like, are good for no use, especially for any profitable fruite: for I thinke, there is no firm soyle within a speares length of some part of the highes of them.
Sur. It is true, and yet have I eaten of good and nourishing fruite growing even there, as pease, pleasant, holesome, and good, growing of their owne accord, never ste [...] o [...]e: but they differ in the maner of branching, only the blossoms differ not much, but the co [...]les hang in clusters, eight, ten, or twelve in a bunch, and tast as other pease.
Bayly. That is strange that they should grow where no firme earth is oure, and without set ing or sowing: me thinkes, if they be of any abundance, poore people might make use of the~, if they be wholesome and not forbidden.
Sur. So do they in the times of dearth.
Bayly. have séene upon these grounds, store of Pewets, Olives, and Cobbes breed, owles of great request at most honorable table .
Sur. So have I: but to allure them, it is good to strew rushes and grasse upon the beach, wheron to lay their egs, unlesse there be store of seaweedes to serve for that purpose. But for your other sorts of ground, as boggie, and hot, and sandy grounds, commonly bar en, I see not how they may be employed to any great profit. For the first, namely, your lo e & sp ngie grounds renched, is good for hopps, as Suffolke, Essex, and Surrie, and other places doe find to their [Page 207] profit. The hot and sandy, (omitting graine) is good for carret rootes, a beneficiall fruite, as Orford, Ipswich, and many sea townes in Suffolke: as also Inland townes, Berrie, Framingham, and others in some measure, in the same shire, Norwich, and many places in Norfolke, Colchester in Essex, Fulham, and other places neere London. And it beginnes to increase in all places of this Realme, where discretion and industrie sway the mindes of the inhabitants: and I doe not a little marvaile, that husbandmen and Farmers doe not imitate this, for their owne families, and to their poore neighbors, as in some places they beg n, to their great profit. I have also observed in many places, where I have had occasion to travaile, that many croftes, toftes, pightes, pingles, and other small uillits of land, about farme houses, and Tenements, are suffred to lie together idle: some overgrowne with nettles, mallowes, thistles, wilde tezells, and divers other unprofitable weedes, which are fat and firtile: where if the farmer would use the meanes, would growe sundry commodities, as hempe, and mustard seede, both which are so strong enemies to all other superfluous, and unprofitable weedes, as they will not suffer any of them to growe, where they are sowne. The hempe is of great use in a farmers house, as is found in Suffolke, Norfolke, Sussex, Dorset, and in many places in Somerset, especially about Burport, and Lime, where the people doe find by it great advantage, not only for cordage for shipping, but also for linnen, and other necessaries about a house. So is also the flaxe, which is also sowne in many places, where good huswives endevour their wits; walls, and hands to that commodious and profitable course, and the flaxe will like well enough in a more light and gentle, and leaner soile, then the hempe. And indeede there is not a place so rude, & [Page 208]unlikely, but diligence and discretion may convert it to some profitable end: and among many other co~modities, I marvaile, men are no more forward in planting of Apple trees, Peare trees, Crabstockes, and such like in their hedges, betweene their fields, aswell as in Orchards: a matter praise worthy, and profitable to the planter, and to the common wealth, very beneficiall.
Bail. Indéed, I have thought upon this kind of husbandrie, but I have bene prevented of mine own desires, by a prejudicate conceit, that these fruites would redound little to my benefit, for that I think they will be stolen, the hedges troden downe, and the trees broken for the fruites sake.
Sur. Negligence may easily find excuse: but this objection is friuolous: for I know in Kent, Worcestershire, Shropshire, Glocestershire, Somerset, and Devon, and many parts in Wales, full of this commoditie, even in their remote hedgerowes. And although some few be lost, sith the rest come so easily, so fully, and so freely, a good mind will not grudge at a wayfaring passenger, taking for his refection, and to qualifie the heate of his travell, an apple or a peare: for the remnant will content the well conditioned owner. For I have knowne, that (all the stolen allowed) the fruite thus dispersedly planted, have made in some little Farmes, or (as they call them in those parts) Burgaines, a tunne, two, three, foure, of Syder, and Perry, which kind of drinke resembling white wine, hath without any further supply of ale, or beere, sufficed a good housholder and his family, the whole yer following, and sometimes hath made of the overplus twenty nobles, or ten pounds, more or lesse.
Baylie. This surely cannot be but confessed, to be very beneficiall, both for private and publike w [...]le. And I myself have noted, yt Mid. in former [Page 209]times, hath had regard to this kind of commoditie: for many Apple=trees, Peare trees, Service trees, & such like, have bene planted in the fields and hedge-rowes, especially in the North and East part of the shire, as also in the South part of Hartfordshire, which are at this day very beneficiall to the inhabitants, both for their owne use and reléefe, as also to v nt divers wayes at London. But the trees are now for the most part very ancient, and I do not sée such a continuall inclination in the time present, to continue or increase this benefite for the use of posteritie: neither did I ever know much Syder or Perry made in these parts, neither do I thinke they have sufficient skill or meanes.
Sur. I thinke indeed, little Sider is made there, some Perrie there is here and there: but more in the West country and in Kent, a place very fructiferous of that kind of fruite.
Bai. Yet is there not so much Syder made, for all the great abundance of fruite, as there might be but in the Inland.
Sur. The reason is, because that neere London, & the Thames side, the fruite is vented in kind, not only to the Fruterers in grosse, but by the country wives, in the neerest part of Kent, Middlesex, Essex, & Surrey, who utter them in the markets, as they do all other vendible things else.
Bayly. But above all others, I thinke, the Kentishmen be most apt and industrious, in planting Orchards with Pippins and Cherries, especially néere the Thames, about Feversham, & Sittingburne. And the order of their planting is such, as the form delighteth the eye, the fruite the taste, and the walks [Page 210] infinite, re rea e the bodie. Besides, the grasse and h rbage, no withstanding the trées, yeldeth as much benefit, in manner, as if there were no trées planted at all, specially for hay.
Sur. I is true: and in mine opinion, many men having tenements, and time in them, make not halfe the profite, which by due and discreet industrie they might.
Bayly. Truly I now so conceive it: for you have in m ny things, made me sée mine owne indiscretion & negligence: but in many of them feare hath more prevailed with me, then wilfull refusall. And so I thinke it doth in other men, who also with my self, ar ignorant of many points of providence, and good husbandry: because they are not generally travelers to sée other places, neither hath their bréeding bene judicious, but plaine, according to a slubberd patterne of ancient ignorance, by which they onely shape all their courses, as their Fathers did, never putting in practise any new device, by the rule of more reason. And therefore indeed, we that are yet in a plodding kind of course, may conforme us o new and probable precedents, as time and riall will yeeld experience. But urely, I hold your opinion good for the planting of fruit trees, not only in Orchards, but in the hedge rowes & fields: for I thinke, we have of no tree more necessarie use.
Sur. It is true in respect of fruite. But in other respects, the Oke, Elme, and Ash, are more precious.
Bayly. These indéed are building trées, and of the three, the Oke is of most request a timber most firme and most durable. I have b [...]ne no great traveller, and therefore I can speake little of the increase [Page 211] or decrease of them, other then in the places where I am most resident, and where my ordinary affaires do lye. And for those parts, I can say, that they increase not, though they seeme not to be wanted: for you see this country inclinable to wood and timber much: yet within these twenty yeeres they have bene diminished two parts of three: and if it go on by like proportion, our children will surely want. How it is in other countries I know not.
Sur. I have seene many places of note for this kind of commodity, (for so t is, howsoever it hath bene little preserved) and I find, that it hath universally received a mortall blow within the time of my memorie: notwithstanding there is a Statute for the preservation and maintenance of the same, and the same continued to this day, but not with wished effect, as we have thereof spoken before.
Bail. I will tell you, Sir, carelesse Gentlemen, that have Mannors and Parkes well woodded, left them by their carefull auncestors, that would not strip a tree for gold, are of the mind (as it seemeth) that the shadow of the high trees do dazle their eyes, they cannot see to play the good husbands, nor looke about them to sell the land, ti l the trees be taken out of their sight.
Sur. Can you breake a jest so boldly upon men of woorth?
Bail. You see as well as I, some do it in earnest: and I thinke indeed, it is partly your fault that are Surueyors: for when Gentlemen have sunke themselves by rowing in Vanities boate, you blow them the bladders of lavishing helps, to make them swim againe awhile, counselling first to cleere the land of [Page 212] the wood, (in the sale whereof is great abuse) perswading them, they shall sell the land little the cheaper. And indeed I hold i providence, where necessitie commands, to chuse of two, the lesser evill: namely, to sell part of a superfluous quantitie of wood, where the remanent will ser [...] the partie in use, rather then the land. But withal, it is the part of a good Surueyor, to counsell frugalitie, and a sparing spending, according to the proportion of the means of him he travel or. And f that great Emperor Necessitie will needes have hau cke, sell the wood, or prize it so, as he that buyes the land have not the wood for nought: as is often seene, when the wood and timber sometimes is woorth the price of wood and land.
Sur. It seemes, when you come to be a Surueyor, as you labor to be, I hope you will be very carefull in your counsell: but it may be, when you seeme to have best skill, and earnest desire to draw the line straight: for a man inclinable to his owne will, he will rather give it into the hands of some one that feedes his conceits with flatterie, and he shall mannage the building, when you have laid the foundation. And what he doth, be it right or crooked, is levell with the marke. And therefore leaving every man to him he likes, I say onely this, that sith timber and timber trees, and wood by due observation, are found to decay so fast, me thinkes, in common discretion, it should behoove every good husband (for all would be so accompted) both upon his own and, as also upon such as he holds of other mens, not onely to maintaine, and to the uttermost to preserve the timber trees, and saplins likely to become timber trees, Oke, Elme, and Ash: but voluntarily to plant young: and because there is not onely an universall inclination to hurle downe, it were expedie~t [Page 213] that sith will will not, authoritie should constraine some mean of restauration, namely, to enjoyne men, as well Lords, as tenants, to plant for every summe of acre, a number of trees, or to sow or set a quantitie of ground with Acorns.
Baylie. I remember there is a Statute made, 35 Hen. the 8. and the . Eliz. for the preservation of timber trees, Oake, Ash, Elme, Aspe, and Beech: and that 12. storers & standils should bee left standing at every fall, upon an acre: but mee thinkes, this Statute is deluded, and the meaning abused: for I have seene in many places at the fa s, where in deed they leave the number of standils and more; but in stead they cut dow e them that were preserved before, and at the next fall, them that were left to answere the Statute, and yong le t againe in their steads: so that there can bee no increase of timber trees, notwithsta~ding, the words of the Statute, by this kind of reservation, unlesse such as were thus left, were continued to become timber trees indeed: And therefore it were not amisse, that some provision were made, to maintain the meaning of the Statute in more force: but I leave that, to such as see more then I see, and have power to reforme it.
Sur. It is a thing in deed to bee regarded, for indeed there is abuse in it.
Bayly. Surely it is, especially in places where little timber growes: for there is no Cou~try, how varraine of timber soever but hath use of timber: and therefore, if neither mens owne wils, seeing the imi ent want, nor force of Justice will moove and worke a reformation, we may say as the Proverbe is, Let them that live longest, fetch their wood farthest.
Sur. But some Countries are yet well stored, and for the abundance of timber & wood, were excepted in the Statute, as the Welds of Kent, Sussex, & Surry, [Page 214]which were all anciently comprehended under the name of Holmes dale. There are divers places also in Darinshire, Cheshire & Shr pshire, wel woodded. And yet he that well observes it, and hath knowne the Weles of Sussex, Surry, and Kent, the grand nursery of those kind of trees, especially Oake, & Beech, shal find such an alteratio~ within lesse then 30. yeres, as may well strike a feare, lest few yeeres more, as pestilent as the former, will leave fewe good trees standing in those Welds. Such a heate issueth out of the many forges, & furnaces, for the making of Iron, and out of the glasse kilnes, as hath devoured many famous woods within the Welds: as about Burningfold, Lopwood Greene, the Minns, Kirdford, Petworth parkes, Ebernowe Wassal , Rusper, Balcombe, Dalington the Dyker: and some forests, and other places infinite. Tantum [...]ui longinqua valet mutare vetustas. The force of time, and mens inclination, make great changes in mightie things. But the croppe of this commodious fruit of the earth, which nature it selfe doth sowe, being thus reaped and cut downe by the sickle of time, hath beene in some plentifull places, in regard of the superfluous aboundance, rather held a hurtfull weed, then a profitable fruit, and therefore the wasting of it held providence, to the end that corne, a more profitable increase, might be brought in, in stead of it, which hath made Inhabitants so fast to hasten the confusion of the one, to have the other. But it is to be feared, that posterities will find want, where now they thinke is too much. Virtutem inc lum m od mus, sublatam sero saepe quaerimus inuidi. Things that wee have too common, are not regarded: but being deprived of them, they are oft times sought for in vaine.
Bay. It is no marvaile, if Sussex and other places you speak off, be deprived of this benefit: for I have heard, there are, or lately were in Sussex, neere 140. [Page 215] hammers and furnaces for Iron, and in it, & Surry adjoyning, 3. or 4. glasse houses: the hammers and furnaces spend, each of them in every 24. houres, 2.3. or foure loades of charr coale, which in a yeere amounteth to an infinit quantitie, as you can better account by your Arithmatique, then I.
Sur. That which you say, is true, but they worke not all, all the yeere: for many of them lacke water in the Summer to blowe their bellows. And to say truth, the consuming of much of these in the Weld, is no such great prejudice to the weale publike, as is the overthrow of wood & timber, in places where there is no great quantitie: for I have observed, that the clensing of many of these welde grounds, hath redounded rather to the benefit, then to the hurt of the Country: for where woods did grow in superfluous abundance, there was lacke of pasture for kine, and of arable land for corne, without the which, a Country or country farme cannot stand, or be releeved, but by neighbour helpes, as the Downes have their wood from the Weld. Beside, people bred amongst woods, are naturally more stubborne, and uncivil, then in the Champion Countries.
Bai. What, are mens manners commonly guided by the disposition & quality of the places where they are bred?
Sur. There is no necessitie in it, I take, but by observation it hath bin collected, That Montani sunt asp ri atque incu ti; Molliores corpore atque moribus pratenses: Campestres mansue [...] & Civiles: Rudes & refractari S [...]colae: Paludicolae inconstantes & ebeti ingenio: Littorales duri, b rrendi, immanes, latrociniis dediti, mniumque deniqu pessimi. &c. So that if this observation hold, men varie in wit, manners and disposition of body & mind, much after the nature of the place where they are brought up. But let us not think that followes alwaies, but that education & divine grace doth shape new minds, maners & dispositions [Page 216]in men, as they are trayned up in the knowledge & feare of God. But woods are commonly most desert, so are Sea coasts subject to violent winds, & vapors, and therfore these above other places are most condemned, & the inhabitants the more need to seeke the meanes of reformation.
Bay. Truly, I thinke all the places you name, the Mountaines, Meddowes, Woods, Marshes, and the Seacoast, breed by nature all rudes, refractarios & immanes, without the grace of God directing them. And therefore we wil leave to censure conditions of men, in one co~tinent, & as it were, under one clymat by the places of their breed. That in my co~ceit, were to give sentence against Gods secret Counsaile, & providence: As also to say, such a complexion were alwayes an argument of ill condition, and such of good, which never holdeth generally true. Let us, I pray, ret[...]ne to our former co~munication, for time passeth, and I know, you would not be long.
Sur. Then I say, where, in former times, a stood in those parts, wholy upon these unprofitable bushy and wooddy grounds, having only some small and ragged pastures for some kind of cattell, now I see as I travaile, and where I have had busines, that these unprofitable grounds are converted to beneficiall tillage: In so much as the people lacke not, but can to their great benefit, yerely afford to others, both Butter, Cheese, and Corne, even where was little or none at all: yet I held a oderation necessary, lest that the too much overthrowing of timber trees, and stocking up of Woods bring such a scarcity of that most necessary commodity, as men build not for lack of timber, but use Peats, Turffe, , Furse, Broome, & such like fuel for firing, where they may be gotten, yea, & Ne ts dung, as in some places of Wiltshire, and else where: which cannot but insue, if there bee neither prevention for the subvertion of the present, [Page 217] no provision to plant or spare for the time to come: who seeth not that the generall extirpation, and stocking up of coppise grounds in Middlesex, wil not breede want to them that shall succeede?
Bail. But that may be the more tolerated, because it bringeth a greater profit in tillage and pasture, the ground being good, bringeth foorth wheat and oates, and other commodious graine, instead of s ubs and shrubs.
Sur. Stubs and shrubs are also necessarie: but as we desire foode, we must preserve the meanes to prepare it for foode: for as corne availeth not without Mills to grind: so other necessaries without firing, are of little use. If all were arable, where were meddowe and pasture: if all pasture and meddowe, where corne? if all for corne and grasse, it were like Midas his wish. Therefore it is good to foresee, and to avoyde a mischiefe to come, by desiring or using present commodities moderately and providently. For when there is a true concurrence betweene the use, and preservation, and increase of necessarie commodities, without wilfull consuming, there seldome followeth too much want: but if, for the overgreedy use of things present, there be no regard of future occasion, it cannot be, but if the earth, the mother of man and other creatures, could verbally complaine, she might well say, shee were even robbed of her fruites by her owne children: and namely when for one commodities sake, another is abandoned by some private men, more expedient for the publique weale.
Bai. I thinke your meaning is, when farmes, or townships are by private men dispeopled, and the houses puld downe, and the land converted to some more private use: as only to shéepe pastures, or grasing for cattle onely, you meane, corne, the [Page 218] more commodious, is abandoned for these lesse profitable.
Sur. Both these are necessary in their places, no man can denie it. But when the Oxe and sheepe shall feede where good houses stoode, where honest men and good subjects dwelled, where hospitalitie was kept, the poore releeved, the king better served, and the common wealth more steeded: who will not say it is the ban of a common wealth, an apparent badge of Atheism , and an argument of apish ambition, or wooluish emulation? but because there is a statute carefully providing reformation, I will be sparing to accuse, though a man might point at the places and persons: Is not this next, Ferne hill, a close of the Lords demeisnes?
Bayly. You remember well, it is so.
Suruey. If my memory faile not, there is a deepe bottome in this field, and a little rill of water rising out of the hill, runnes thorowe it.
Bayly. If you looke but over this hill, you shall sée it.
Sur. I see it, and I marvaile that there hath beene no respect had of this place: for it is a desert bottome, full of bushes and shrubs, yeelding now little or no benefit.
Bay. What can you advise to be done with it, to make it more profitable?
Sur. I could wish some ccost to be bestowed heerein, making a fish pond, nay it would make at the least, two or three, one belowe the other.
Bai. Alas, that were to little purpose, as I take it, considering the charge of making the ponds, the clearing of the water course, the clensing of the bodies, the making of the dammes or heads of the ponds will be more chargeable, then the fish will be profitable.
Sur. As you conceive it, for where reason or experience [Page 219] teach not, there the will followes to be untoward in all actions: and seldome men practise doubtfull things, howsoever probable, for experience sake. But in this there is no doubt at all, the benefit is certaine by approoved experie~ce, & it paieth the charge to the founder in short time, & afterward the benefit comes without much labour or cost. He that hath travailed, and is acquainted with Sussex, & Surrie, and hath observed this commoditie, may find that gentlemen, and others able in those parts, will not suffer such a convenient place as this for the purpose, to lie unprepared for this use: & the sweetnesse of the gaine they yearely make of it, hath bred such an increase of ponds for fish, as I thinke, these two shires have more of them, then any twenty other shires in England.
Baylie. That were very much, but I take it, the making of them is very chargeable, for the clensing and digging, the ridding of the stuffe, and making the head, I thinke will consume a greater charge, then many yeeres will pay, or redeeme againe, as I sayd before.
Sur. That which commonly commeth out of these kind of places, is good soile for other lands, and will of it selfe quite the cost of clensing and carrying. As for the head wherein the greatest charge consisteth, may be done, for a marke or a pound a pole at the most, but where there is good fast earth, as is heere, I thinke lesse will doe it. This pond may be 20. pole at the head, few so much: and after 2. or 3. yeres being well stored, it will yeeld requitall, not only for domesticall use, but to be vented very beneficially: for the Fishmongers of London doe use to buy the fish by the score or hundred, of a competent scantling, when the ponds in the country be sewed, and bring the~ to London in caske, 20, 30, 40, 50 miles, and vent them by retaile: and if the ponds be so remote [Page 220] fro~ the maine Mart London, as the fish cannot be conveniently transferred, other confining Cities, townes, & inhabita~ts, besides the owners private families, will find good use of them: and many times also, these k nds of ponds may have sufficie~t fal of water for corne Mills, fulling, or wake Mills, syth Mills, and Mills of other kinds, as the country where such convenient places are, may require: and it is found, by such as duly observe the courses of countries, and inclinations of men, that want of providence and feare of charge, withholdeth mens minds fro~ many benefites, private & publique, and that many times, where they are voluntarily mooved to consume far more in matter of meere vanitie, and things which right reason holdeth very friuolous.
Bay. Truly I have observed this that you say, to be true in many, especially in such, as ambition mooveth without necessity to build more faire and stately piles, then their estate or abilities will well heare, and covet nothing more, then to raise their fame by their follie, not respecting commodities, so much as pleasures, as if the name of a faire house, were meate, drinke and credite unto them: where if they were forced by necessitie to raise an habitacle, it might be so marshalled in discretion, that it should not excéede the qualitie of the person, neither stand without such supply of all convenient appendances, as might both argue the party provident, and adde meanes unto all necessaries for alike families reliefe.
Sur. Men will have their humors: but he is wise, that can learne by others harmes to avoyd, and by others good example to followe the like.
Bay. Sir, you see this peece of ground, it hath not the name for nought, it is called fernie close, and as you see, it is full, and so overgrowne with these [Page 221]brakes, that all the art we can devise, and labour we can use, cannot rid them.
Sur. Neglectis urenda filix, innascitur agris, sayth Horace. But in many places they serve to good use: & therefore, where they growe, it must be considered, whether it be better, to destroy them, or to foster the~, for they seldome or never growe in a fat soile, nor cold, but in a sandy and hot ground: And as Theophrastus sayth in his eight booke, it commeth not up in manured places, but withereth away.
Bai. How, meaneth he by manured places, plowed grounds?
Sur. Plowed grounds, may be sayd to be manured, but it is not so ment by Theophrastus: for he meaneth grounds well soyled, with good fat marle and dung: for plowing without this kind of manurance, will hardly kill it: for the ground being naturally barraine, it will not quite cost to plowe it, till they growe no more. And if there be no other soile to manure it, take the brakes themselves, to kill the brakes.
Bayly. I thinke, that were the way to raise more: for it is like the adding more fewell to put out the fire.
Sur. But you see, that though the oyle feede the Lampe, oyle will extinguish it.
Bayly. That is, if you drowne the match with oyle.
Sur. So if you cut the brakes often, while they are young, and a little before Midsommer when they are growne, and cast them upon the same land, and set the fold upon it, and use it thus, 2. or three yeeres, feeding it often with cattle or sheepe, you shall find a great decay of them. In the weldes of Sussex and Surry, places inclinable to brakes, you may learne, how the inhabitants by their indevors, doe make good [Page 222]use of this kind of husbandry, both for corne, and to increase their pasture, by cutting them in August, & after when they are withered, and laying them upon their grounds, with the fold, as I told you, which causeth the grasse to spring very fast, and freshly: and they are so farre from coveting to kill them, that they fetch them for this use farre off: but the continuance of this course wil impaire them much. Moreover, they bring the brakes into their yards, where their cattle lodge in the winter, and there they rot, & when they be well dissolved among their other soile, they carry it about September, and October, into their arable fields, to their good advantage. And in some places they lay it in the common high waies (as in Hartfordshire and other places) and about March carry it into their grounds. It is so lively, slymy and vegitable a nature, as it seldome becomes utterly consumed, but by fat marl , and soile, & co~tinuall plowing, as I told you before. But I see, heere is a ground next unto this, of another nature, full of bushes and briers, he is no good husband that oweth it.
Bai. Neither he that owes it, nor a better husband can prevent this inconvenience: for besides the bushes, the mosse is so full and rancke, as the ground is good for nothing, but for that small pasture, that is in it heere and there.
Sur. The ground of it selfe, I see is good enough, and not so prone to mosse as you take it, but the cause of the mosse is the bushes: for after every showre of raine, the bushes hang full of droppes, which often falling on the ground, makes the upper part of the earth so cold, that i increaseth this kind of mosse: but without the aid and industrie of a skilfull husband, fairest grounds will be come ougly, and best land evill, and will bring oorth unprofitable [Page 223]weedes, bushes, brakes, bryers, thornes, and all kind of hurtfull things according to the curse inflicted upon it for mans fault, at the beginning.
Bail. Admit, no man did manure the earth, yet surely there be many grounds, in my conceit, would never become worse then they be.
Sur. You are in a great error: for the freest grounds that you see, the fairest pastures, and greenest meddowes, would become in short time, overgrowne with bushes, woods, weeds, and things unprofitable, as they were before they were rid, and clensed of the same by the industry of man, who was injoyned that care and travaile to manure the earth, which for his disobedience should bring foorth these things.
Bayly. How then was the state of this Island of great Brittaine, at the beginning, when it was first peoplet?
Sur. A very desert and wildernes, ful of woods, f lls, moores, bogs, heathes, and all kind of forlorne places: & howsoever we find the state of this Island nowe, records doe witnes unto us, that it was for the most part an universall Wildernes, untill people finding it a place desolate, and forlorne, beganne to set footing heere, and by degrees grew into multitudes; though for the time, brutish and rude, Time taught them, and Nature drewe them to find the meanes how to stocke up trees, bushes, bryers, & thornes, & in stead thereof, to plowe the land, to sowe, set, and plant, to build Cities for defence, aswell against the force of Wilde beasts, then plentifull in these grounds which now we manure, as against enemies, as the ruines of Cilchester in Hamshire, among the woods, and of Verolamium in Hartfordshire, and other Romane Monuments of antiquity, doe lay before our eies at this day. After Cities, (as the land became [Page 224] more and more peopled) they built lesser Townes, Villages, and Dorpes, and after more securitie, Country Farmes, and Gruinges: and as these increased, wild beasts, as Beares, Bores, Woolves, & such like decreased: for when their shelters, great woods, were cut downe, and the Country made more and more champion, then the people more and more increased, and more and more decreasing the inconveniences that offended them.
Bai. I observe in this your discourse some doubts, as whether all this Island, now great Brittaine, were a Wildernes and Desert, and whether there were ever such wild beast in it, as you speake off.
Sur. If you will be satisfied by records, you may find, that most of the Shires in England were Forestae. and as for the wild beasts, Authors very antentique, report of the Calidonian Beare, Bore, Bull, and Kine, which were in this Island, with infinite many Woolves: as by reason of the great woods and fastnesse, there are yet in Ireland.
Bay. This our discourse is some what from our matter, yet not altogether impertinent: for if this lie hidden, and men be ignorant of the state of former times, our present swelling and ambitious co~ceits may séeme to assume more commendation, for present art and industry, in reforming the earth, the~ Ages of old: wherein I perceive, and by your discourse collect, that our fathers did more in tenne yéeres, then we in forty.
Sur. It is true, because we sawe not the earths former deformities, we dreame it was then, as now it is, from the beginning, whereas indeede our forefathers, by their diligence and travaile, left unto our forefathers, and they by increasing experience, and endevour, left unto us that faire and fruitfull, free fro~ bryers, bushes, & thorns, wherof they fou~d it full. [Page 225] And this field wherein now we are, may be an instance: for you see by the ancient ridges or lands, though now overgrowne with bushes, it hath bene arable land, and now become fit for no use, unlesse it be reformed. And the bushes that are in this field, you see, are such shrubs and dwarffie bushes, and fruitlesse b iars, as are never like to prove good underwood, nor good haying or hedging stuffe. If it were fit for either, and the country scant of such provision, it might be preserved. But sith they have bene so cropped & brused with cattle, and sith this countrie is full and most inclinable by nature to this kind of stuffe, more then sufficient for fencing and fewell, and corne ground and good pasture nothing plentifull, if the tenant were a good husband, he would stocke it up and plow it.
Baylie. I thinke it is so full of Mosse, it will beare little corne.
Sur. The Mosse being turned in by the plowe, will rot, and these hillockes, Mole-hils, and Ant-hils, will inrich the ground, & cherish the seed sown.
Bayly. What graine is best to be sowne first after the stocking?
Sur. It seemeth to be a good stiffe clay ground, and therefore Otes are best to prepare the earth, to make it fit for wheate the next season: and after it, as the ground may be by the skilfull husbandman thought fit for wheate againe or pease. But if the soile were leane and light, barly would agree better in it, and a light red rush wheat, where, in the more stronger ground, the white Wheate, and gray Ball, (as they call it in the West parts) is best. And in some more hot and sandie grounds, Rye, as men shall by experience find the land to like the graine, and the graine it. For there is a naturall affinitie or enmitie betweene graines and grounds, as between stomacks and meates. And therefore the husbandmans experience [Page 226] will best guide him. But I do not a little wonder of men in this age, whom, whether I may rather accuse of idlenesse, or ignorance, I cannot tell: for where I have travelled in sundry parts of England, I have in many of them found many old drie pits, anciently digged in fields, Commons, Moores, and other grounds, many of them bearing still the names of Mar epits, and by search have bin found to yeeld very excellent Marle, first found and digged by the providence and industrie of our forefathers, and left by the negligence of later times.
Bayly. But by your favor, fat Marle, me thinks, is not good for this kind of ground, because it is a strong lay, it is better, I take it, for a hot and sandie soyle, and a hot chalke better for this.
Sur. It is very true, that observation should not have bin forgotten: but it is well remembred of you.
Bai. We have, indéed, a kind of plodding and common course of husbandry hereabouts, & a kind of péeu sh imitation of the most, who (as wise men note) are the worst husbands, who onely try what the earth will do of it selfe, and séeke not to helpe it with such meanes, as nature hath provided; whereas if men were careful and industrious, they shuld find, that the earth would yéeld in recompence for a good husbands travell and charge, Centum pro cento without corrupt usurie.
Sur. I am glad you can now approve it so in reason: for I think, experience doth not yet so fully teach you. I have knowne where land hath bene very base and barren, and so continued many generations, as ground in manner forsaken and forlorne, abandoned of the plow, which after hath come into the hands of a discreet and industrious husband, that knew how, and would take the paines, and bestow the cost to manure it in kind, hath much enriched [Page 227] himselfe by it, and where before it would not beare a crop of requitefull increase, by marling and good usage, hath borne crop after crop, 12.16. or 20. yeares without intermission. The benefit of marling, Lancashire, Chesshire, Shropshire, Somerset, Middlesex, Sussex, Surrey, among many other places, can witnesse, though not all by one kind of soyling and marling. For neither is all kind of Marle in one place, neither any one kind in all places. But few places are so defective, but it yeeldeth of it self, or is neere unto some place of helpe. And men that will have profite, must use the means, they must not sit and give aime, and wish and repine at others increase. There must be observation, to marke how others thrive, inclination and imitation to do the like indevor & charge. And if one experiment faile, trye a second, a third, and many: looke into places and persons, note the qualities of the land of other men, and conferre it with thine owne: and where there is a resemblance, marke what the best husband doth upon his land like unto thine: if it prosper, practise it, and follow the example of him, that is commonly reported a thriftie husband. And by this meanes, will experience grow, & of one principle of reason, many conclusions will proceed. If a man looke into Cornewall, there shall he find, that in divers places, especially upon the North coast, about Pa [...]s ow, that the inhabitant Farmers do soile their lands with sea sand: which because the country affoordeth not in al places, passe for cartcariage, men fetch this kind of sand 3.4.6. miles in sackes on horsebacke. And poore men live etching and selling it to the more wealthie. In and Somerset, and in some places of Cornewall, Sussex, and in the South part of Surrey, besides their other commendable courses of husbandrie, they burne their land, and call it in the West parts, [Page 228]Burning of beate, and in the South-East parts, Devonshiring, and by that meanes in barren earth have excellent Rye, and in abundance. In Shropshire, De highshir , Flintshire, and now lately in some part of Sussex, the industrious people are at a more extraordinarie charge and toyle. For the poore husbandme~ and Farmers do buy, digge, and fetch limestones, 2.3.4. miles off, and in their fields build Lime kilnes, burne it, and cast it on their fields, to their great advantage: which kind of lime is of the nature of hot chalke, great helpes to cold and moist grounds.
Bai. But this kind of stone is not to be had in all places.
Sur. That kind or some other, is to be found in or nere most places, and there is no kind of stone, but being burned, will worke the like effect. So will also & especially the beach or pibble stones burned, that frequent the sea shore in many places, as upon the Camber shore neere Rye, and at East-bourne in Sussex, neere P msey about Folkestone, and upon the coast of Kent, upon Orford nesse, and about Alb row, Hoseley, and that coast in Suffolke, and sundry other places upon the sea shore: In some places in so great aboundance, as if there were wood in competent measure, would make good & great store of lime for building.
Bay. It is farre to fetch it: for I do not thinke, but euery land fetched 5. miles, is worth 5 shillings the cariage, and foure pence at the pit: this is very chargeable.
Sur. Yet it quiteth the cost well enough, he that is able, doth find at profitable. But you are in the mind of some that I haue heard, when they haue bin mooued to entertaine a helpe for their land, either it is too deale, or too farre to fetch, or too deepe in the earth, or some difficultie they pretend in it, that [Page 229] few vndertake the right way to good husbandrie, like vnto them that Salomon speaketh of, that in winter will hold his lazie hands in his lowzie amnerie, and for slouth will not looke about his land in the cold, and sleepe out the time in Summer. Many difficulties and impediments preuent them that will neuer be good husba~ds nor thrifty. But such as mean to liue like men, will shake off the cold with trauell, and put by sleepe by their labor, and thinke no cost too great, no labor too painefull, no way too farre to preserue or better their estates. Such they be that search the earth for her fatnes, and fetch it for fruites sake. Many fetch Moore-earth or Murgion from the riuer betweene Colebrooke and Vxbridge, and carry it to their barren grounds in Buckinghamshire, Hartfordshire, and Middlesex, eight or ten miles off. And the grounds whereupon this kind of soile is employed, will indure tilth aboue a dozen yeres after, without further supply, if it be thorowly bestowed. In part of Hamshire they haue another kind of earth, for their drie and sandy grounds, especially betweene Fordingbridge and Ringwood, and that is, the slub of the riuer of Auon, which they call Mawme, which they digge in the shallow parts of the riuer: and the pits where they digge it, will in few yeares fill againe: & this Mawme is very beneficial for their hot and sandy grounds, arable and pasture. And about Christchurch twineam, and vp the riuer of Stowre, they cut and dig their low and best meddowes, to helpe their vpland hot and heathie grounds. And now of late, the Farmers neere London, haue found a benefite, by bringing the Scauingers street soyle, which being mixed as it is with the stone cole dust, is very helpefull to their clay ground: for the cole dust being hot and drie by nature, qualifieth the stiffenesse and cold of the soyle thereabouts. The soyle of the stables of [Page 230] London, especially neere the Tha es side, is caried Westward by water, to Chelsey, Futham, Battersay, Putney, and those parts for their sandie grounds.
Bai. Whether do you accompt the better, the stall or stable dung?
Sur. The stable dung is best for cold ground, and the stall dung for hot grounds, if they be both rightly applyed. And of all other things, the Ashes that proceed of the great rootes of stocked ground, is fittest and most helpefull to a cold clay. So is the sinders that come from the Iron, where hammers or forges are, being made small, and laid thin vpon the cold moist land.
Bay. I was once in Somersetshire, about a place neere Tanton, called Tandeane, I did like their land and their husbandry well.
Sur. You speake of the Paradice of England: and indeed the husbandrie is good, if it be not decayed, since my being in those parts: as indeed (to be lame~ted) men in all places giue themselues to too much ease and pleasure, to vaine expence, and idle exercises, and leaue the true delight, which indeed should be in the true and due prosecution of their callings: as the artificer to his trade, the husbandman to the plow, the gentleman, not to what he list, but to what befits a gentleman, that is, if he be called to place in the commonweal, to respect the execution of Justice: he be an inferior, he may be his owne Bayly, and see the managing and manuring of his owne reuenewes, and not to leaue it to the discretion and diligence of lither swaines, that couet onely to get and ea e. The eye of the idle master may be worth [Page 231] two working seruants. But where the master standeth vpon tearmes of his qualitie and condition, and will refuse to put (though not his hand) his eye towards the plow, he may (if he be not the greater: for I speake of the meaner) gentlelize it awhile: but he shall find i farre better, and more sweet in the end, to giue his fellow workmen in the morning, and affably to call them, and kindly to incite them to their businesse, though he foyle not his fingers in the labor. Thus haue I seene men of good qualitie behaue them towards their people, and in surueying of their hirelings. But indeed it is become now contemptible and reprochfull, for a meane master to looke to his laborers, and that is the reason, that many well left, leaue it againe before the time, through prodigalitie and improuidence, and mean men industrious steppe in; and where the former disdained to looke to his charge, this doth both looke and labor, and he it is that becomes able to buy that, which the idle and wanton are forced to sell. Now I say, if this sweet country of Tandeane, and the Westerne part of Somersetshire be not degenerated, surely, as their land is fruitfull by nature, so do they their best by art and industrie. And that makes poore men to liue as well by a matter of twenty pounds per annum, as he that hath an hundred pounds.
Bayly I pray you, Sir, what do they more, then other men, vpon their grounds?
Sur. They take extraordinarie paines, in soyling, plowing, and dressing their lands. After the plow, there goeth some three or foure with mattocks to breake the clods, and to draw vp the earth out of the furrowes, that the lands may lye round, that the water annoy not the seed: and to that end they most [Page 232] carefully cut gutters and trenches in all places, where the water is likeliest to annoy. And for the better it riching of their plowing grounds, they cut vp, cast, and carry in the vnplowed headlands, and places of no vse. Their hearts, hands, eyes, and all their powers concurre in one, to force the earth to yeeld her vtmost fruite.
Bai. And what haue these men in quantitie vpon an acre, more then the ordinarie rate of wheat, which is the principall graine?
Sur. They haue sometimes, and in some places foure, fiue, sixe, eight, yea ten quarters in an ordinarie acre.
Baily. I would thinke it impossible.
Sur. The earth, I say, is good, and their cost and paines great, and there followeth a blessing, though these great proportions alwaies hold not. And the land about Ilchester, Long Sutton, Somerton, Andrey, Middles y, Weston, and those parts, are also rich, and there are good husbands.
Bai. Do they not helpe their land much by the fold?
Sur. Not much in those parts: but in Dorset, Wiltshire, Ham-shire, Barke-shire, and other places champion, the Farmers do much inrich their land indeed with the sheepfold. A most easie, and a most profitable course: and who so neglecteth it, having meanes, may be condemned for an ill husband: nay, I know it is good husbandrie, to drive a flocke of sheepe over a field of wheate, rye, or barly, newly sowne, especially if the ground be light and dry: for the trampling of the sheepe, and their treading, doth settle [Page 233] the earth about the corne, keeping it the more moist and warme, and causeth it to stand the faster, that the wind shake it not so easely, as it will doe when the roote lyeth too hollowe.
Bai. I cannot reproove you. But I knowe grounds of a strange nature in mine opinion: for if they be once plowed, they will hardly graze againe in 6. or 7. yeeres: yet have I seene as rich wheate and barly on it, as may well approove the ground to be very fruitfull. And if a stranger that knoweth not the ground, looke upon it after a crop, he will say it is very barraine.
Sur. Such ground I knowe in many places, as in the Northwest part of Essex, in some places in Cambridgeshire, Hartfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Wiltshire. But commonly, where you find this kind of earth, it is a red or browne soile, mixed with a kind of white, and is a mould betweene hot and cold, so brittle in the upper part, and so fickle, as it hath no firme setling for the grasse to take rooting so soone, & in such sort as in other firmer grounds: and for this kind of ground, good and well rotted stable dung is fittest. Let us I pray thee, walke into the next field, the Lords demeisnes, called as I take it, Highfield.
Bay. It is indéede, a large ground you sée it is. and good pasture, but so overgone with Thistles, as we can by no meanes destroy them.
Sur. This kind of Thistle approoveth the goodnes of the ground, they seldome or never growe in a barraine soile.
Bay. Yes, I have seene thistles in meane ground.
Sur. It may be so, a kind of smal hungry dwarffy thistle, but this kind which you see large, high and fatty, you shall never see in aboundance, in a weake soile.
Bail. But I wish they were fewer in number: though they may be a note of good ground, I find the~ nothing profitable, unles it be to shrowd the under grasse in the parching Summer, rom the heate of the scorching Sunne, for they are good for no other use that I can find.
Sur. That is some benefite: but the best way to kill them, is to take them up often by the rootes, ever as they beginne to spring, and either presently to rake them up, and carry them out of the fields, or else to beate them in small peeces: for their nature is to revive againe like an Adder, that is not thorowly battered in the head, and cut in peeces. Such is the nature of this kind of Thistle, that though it be plucked up by the roote, if it lie still upon the ground, as soone as it receiveth the evaporation of the earth, his sli [...]ie nature gathers a kind of new life, and beginnes to fasten & cleave it selfe to the earth againe, and to shoote foorth small strings, which entring into the earth againe, will bring foorth many for one.
Bai. That is, if they be cut when they are seeded, the seedes fall and increase.
Sur. Nay, if you cut them in their infancie: for if they be not cut often, & that, as soone as they shewe themselves a foote high or lesse, the roote will recover, and bud againe: the roote is as the liver in the body, from whence proceedeth all the bloud that feedeth the veines, that quickneth the body, which by obstr ction and stopping of the passages, putrifieth. So the rootes of these vegitables, when the branches are againe & againe cut off as they spring, the roote is left so overcharged with moisture, that it wil in the end yeeld, and give over bearing, and die: as will also Rushes, Flagges, and such like, which though they be strong by nature, yet by this meanes they will be destroyed soonest.
Baily. But what say you to this heathy ground? [Page 235] I thinke of all other grounds, this is the most unprofitable.
Sur. Indeede, naturally all heathy grounds are barraine, and that comes by the saltnes of the soile.
Bai. Doth all barrainnesse procéede of saltnes?
Sur. As leannes in a mans body, is principally procured by saltnes of the humor: So is barrainesse in grounds; for salt is hot, and heate drieth, and too much drowth breeds barrainesse and leannesse. And according to the measure and proportion of the decree of hot and cold, moisture and drinesse, are all grounds fruitfull and barraine, as the bodie by these causes is fat or leane. Therefore, though heathy grounds be commonly in the highest degree of barrainesse, yet are some more in the meane then some. Some are more tractable and more easily reduced to some use then others, and therefore hath sundry names. Heath is the generall or common name, whereof there is one kind, called Hather, the other, Ling. And of these particulars, there are also sundry kinds distinguished by their severall growth, leaves, stalkes, and flowers: as not far from Graves end, there is a kind of Hather that beareth a white flowre, and is not so common as the rest, and the ground is not so exceeding barraine as some other, but by manurance would be brought to profitable tillage. Some, and the most, doth beare a purple or reddish flowre, as in the Forest of Windsore, and in Suffolke, and sundry other places; and this kind is most common, and groweth commonly in the worst ground. In the North parts, upon the Mountaines and Fells, there is a kind of Ling, that beares a berry: every of these hath his peculiar earth wherein it delighteth. Some in sandy, & hot grounds, as betweene Wilford bridge, and Snape bridge in Suffolke. And that is bettered especially, and the heath killed best and soonest, by [Page 236]good fat marle. Some in gravelly and cold earth, and that is hard to be cured, but with good stable dung. But there is a kind of heathie ground, that seemeth altogether unprofitable for tillage, because that the gravell & clay together retaineth a kind of black water, which so drencheth the earth, & causeth so much cold, as no husbandry can relieve it, yet if there be chalkhils nere this kind of earth, there may be some good done upon it: for that onely or lime will comfort the earth, drie up the superfluous water, and kill the heath. But the sandy heathie ground is contrarily amended, as I told you, with fat marle and that is commonly found neere these heathie grounds, if men were provident and forward to seeke for it. Every of these heathie grounds are best known of what nature they be of, whether hot or cold, by the growing of it: as if it grow low and stubbed, it argues the ground to be gravelly, cold, and most barren; where it groweth ranke and high, and the stalke great, the ground is more warme, and more apt for tilth, yet it requireth some kind of composte, else will it not beare past a crop or two, contenting the owner: but if men will not indevor to search for the hidden blessings of God, which he hath laid up in store in the bowels of the earth, for their use that will be painefull, they may make a kind of idle & vaine hew of good husbandry, whe~ indeed they only plow, and sow, and charge the earth, to bring foorth fruite of it owne accord, when we know it was cursed for our sakes, and commanded to deny us increase, without labour, sweate, and charge, which also are little availeable, if we serve not him in feare and reverence, who is the author of true labors, and of the blessings promised thereunto.
Bai. I thinke there is no disease in the body of man, but nature hath given vertue to some other [Page 237] creatures, as to hearbes, plants, and other things, to be medicines for the same: so is there no kind of ground so meane, barren, and defective, but God hath provided some meanes to better it, if man, to whom he hath given all, will search for it, and use the same to that end it was provided for. And yet this peece of ground adjoyning, hath had much labour and great cost bestowed on it, and the ground little or nothing the more reformed: This fursy close.
Sur. In deed it is a strong weed, called in the North Cou~try, Whynns. It seldome gives place where it once footeth, I will goe see the forme of the furses. These furses are not worth the fostering, they be dwarffe furses, & wil never grow great, nor igh, and of little use.
Bai. I speake not to learne how to preserve them, but how to destroy them.
Sur. But there is a kind of Furse worth the preservation, if it grow in a Countrie, barren of wood. And of that kind there growes much in the West part of Devonshire, and in some parts of Cornwall, where they call them French Furses, they grow very high, and the stalke great, whereof the people make faggots, and vent them in neighbour Townes, especially in Exeter, and make great profit of them. And this kind of Furze groweth also upon the sea coast of Suffolk: But that the people make not that use of them, as in Devonshire and Cornewall, for they suffer their sheepe and cattell to bruize them when they be young, and so they grow to scrubbed and low tufts, seldome to that perfection that they might; yet in that part of Suffolk they make another use of them, they plant them in hedges, and the quickset of them make a strong fence.
Bai. Very silly quickset hedges, I would thinke, [Page 238] can be made of simple furzes.
Sur. Such as after two or three yeares, being cut close to the earth, they will then branch and become so thicke, as no hedge, if the ditch be well made, and quicke well set, can be more defensible, being set in two or three ranckes.
Bay. I marvell they learne it not in Cornwal, where for want of quickset, and haying or hedging stuffe, especially in the West parts, they are forced to make their fences with turffes and stones.
Sur. They do so indeed, upon the Moors there: but sheepe will easily scale their walles. But the Furse hedges which I have seene in that part of Suff. no cattle can pierce them.
Bai. Then are these furzes good for nothing.
Sur. To brew withall and to bake, and to stop a little gappe in a hedge.
Bayly. Then may we hereabouts affoord the standing of them: for we have no great plenty of these necessaries in these parts.
Sur. I see no store of hay boote, unlesse it be in the Lords wood, where I thinke it be not lawfull for men at their pleasure to take.
Bay. What meane you by hay boote? I have read it often in Leases, and I promise you, I did ever take it to be that which men commonly use in hay time, as to make their forkes and tooles, and lay in some kind of losts or hay taliets, as they call the~ in the West, that are not boorded: and is not that the meaning?
Sur. I take it not: it is for hedging stuffe, namely, to make a dead hedge or raile, to keepe cattle from corne or grasse to be mowne.
Bai. What difference then is there betwéene hay boote and hedge-boote.
Sur. Some there is: for a hedge implieth quickset [Page 239]and trees: but a hay a dead fence, that may be made one yeare, and pulled downe another, as it is common upon the downes in many countries where men sow their corne, in undefenced grounds, there they make a dead hay next some common way to keepe the cattle from the corne.
Baylie. If that be the difference, we have some use of it also in this country, but we want it much, as you sée, by the lying of our hedges.
Sur. I see the hedges lye very unhusbandly: a true note of few good husbands: for he that will suffer his hedges to lye open, and his houses uncovered, never put a good husbands hand to his head. Quicke-set hedges are most commendable: for they increase & yeeld profit and supply, to repaire decayed places: but dead hedges or hayes devoure and spend, and yet are seldome secure.
Bayly. I pray, what is the best stuffs to make quick-set of?
Sur. The plants of white thorne, mixed here and there with oke and ash.
Bayly. But the plants are not easily gotten in all places.
Sur. Then the berries of the white or hawthorn, acornes, ash keyes mixed together, & these wrought or wound up in a rope of straw, wil serve, but that they will be somewhat longer in growing.
Bayly. How must the rope thus stuffed with the former berries be layd?
Sur. Make a trench at the top or in the edge of the ditch, and lay into it some fat soyle, and then lay the rope all along the ditch, and cover it with good soile also, then cover it with the earth, and ever as any weedes or grasse begins to grow, pull it off & keepe it as cleane as may be from all hindrances: & whe~ the [Page 240] seeds begin to come, keepe cattle from bruising them, and after some two or three yeares, cut the yong spring by the earth, and so will they branch and grow thicke, and if occasion serve, cut them so again alwayes, preserving the Oake and Ashe to become trees.
Bayly. What is the best time to lay the berries in this manner?
Sur. In September or October, if the berries be fully ripe.
Bay. What if a man were desirous to make a little grouet, where now no kind of such plantes doe grow?
Sur. Till the place with the plow, in manner of fallowing, and crosse plow it, and bent the clods smal as may bee: Then sow or sett Acornes, Ashkeyes, Hawes, Hedgberries, Nuts, and what else you desire. and then arrow it, and for some two or three yeres it were good to keepe it as free from grasse or weeds as could be, untill the seeds were above the grasse, and when they be somewhat stronger, the superfluous weeds will bee the more easely culd out. I know a wood sowne of Acornes about two and twentie yeares since, the Oakes whereof are now as high as an ordinary steeple. The ground in this case must be considered: for some grounds are more naturally inclyned to foster such things, and some are not. Some kind of wood also loveth one kind of soyle more then another, as the Juniper delighteth in a chalkie soyle, as appeareth in Kent and Surrey. So doth also the Yew tree, which brooketh a light and barren soyle. The Walnut tree likewise in meane ground being hott, and the Elme a sandy earth, the Aspe, the Popple, the Alder, the Able trees moyst ground, the Oake most kinds of ground.
Bay. I have a peece of land, overcome with a [Page 241]kind of weed that is full of prickles, and groweth a foot or two foot high, whereof no cattell will feed, and I know no way to destroy it.
Sur. By your description it should be Gorse or prickle broome, a weed that groweth commonly upon grounds overtilled, and worne out of heart, and it commonly groweth not but in cold clay ground, and is hardly killed, but with lyme or chalke, and so plowed, & then sow it two or three crops together. And if you then let it lie, it will beare you the next yeare a cropp of course Hay, and will then yerely increase in goodnes for pasture or Hay, & so much the sweeter and thicker, if you keepe it low eaten.
Bay. I thinke you mistake the weed, you meane, I take it, Furse or Whyns, which some call also Gorse.
Sur. I thinke I mistake it not, but such as call Furse, Gorse, are as much mistaken, as they that call Brakes, Broome.
Bay. Because you speake of Broome, I know a Lordship of my Landlords, which no doubt you shal suruey too, it is much pestered with Broome, and there hath beene much charge and paynes, and Art too bestowed in destroying of them, but al in vaine. They have beene cut, stocked up by the roots, as was thought, burnt and plowed, and yet they grow againe.
Sur. It is the nature of Furse, Broome, and Brakes, to keepe their standing, and hardly wil yeeld the possession once gotten in a field: for commonly they like the soyle wel, and the soyle them, & where there is a mutuall congruitie, there is seldome a voluntary seperation. And therefore, as long as there is not a disturbance of their possession with a contrarie earth, they will keepe where they are: for as the Fish loveth and liveth in the water, the Camelion by the [Page 242] Ayre, the Salamander in the fire, and either of them being taken from his element, wil die. So these kinds of weeds (for so they may be called) as long as they possesse the soyle they affect, doe what you can, they will live. And therefore as the soyle is commonly barrain hott, and dry wherein they live, make this ground fatt and fruitfull, and they will die. And therefore the greatest enemie that may bee set to incounter them, is good and rich Marle, and thereupon, the Plowe some few yeeres together: And you shal see, they wil shrinke away, and hide their heads.
Bail. But commonly this kind of fatt Marle is not to be gotten in all places; nay seldome where these barren grounds are.
Sur. It is true, they commonly come not, and say to the lazie husbandman, Here I am. It is the nature of all things to covet rest, and where dumbe and dead th ngs urke, is not easily found without diligent search, Gold, Silver, Brasse, Tynn, Lead, Cole: Slate, and great Milstones, shew not themselves voluntarily, but are found by scrutation and discretion. And I thinke, many treasureable blessings lie hid from slouthfull men, for want of search, and worthily. So doth this notable co~moditie of Marle, from the eyes of the husbandman, untill he dive into the bowels of the earth, to seeke, and admit hee misse it here, he may find it there, if he fayle to day, he may get it to morrow. But Thryft hath no greater enemies then Ignorance & Idlenes. The one perswades it cannot be, the other, it wil not be. And betweene these Weeds, Bryers, Thornes, Thistles, Furse, Broome, Gorse and a thousand markes of the first curse annoyous, which by the blessing of God, Industry, and charge might easily and shortly remove more out of our sights: And yet if the view of them daily could make us or moove us to call our first disobedience [Page 243]obedience to consideration, & repentance, I would wish thornes to grow where corne stands. But sith no spectacle of former threats, no use of prese~t blessings, will move the hard harted, either to seeke by labour or charge to reforme these evils, easie to bee reformed, Let us leave to discourse, and he that hath understanding, and will, let him use them here in this toylesome life, and not be idle: for if we do what wee can, these cankers will follow us, these inconveniences wil annoy us, and will procure every day, new labour, and newe cost, and newe diligence, and newe Arte, to make us know, that Omnia proposuit labori Deus. Man of necessity must labour. And whe~ he hath swett and toyled, and bestowed all his skil & utmost charge, if God add not a blessing, all is lost. Paul may plant, Apollo may water, but if God give not the increase, the labour is vaine. God maketh a fruitfull land barraine, for the wickednes of the people that dwel therin there is a curse. Againe, A handful of corne sowne upon the tops of high mountaines, shal so prosper, as the fruites and eare, thereof shal shake like the high Cedars in Libanon. Here is a blessing. It is a gracious thing therefore to feare and reverence him, whose blessing and cursing so much prevaile, and to pray to him for successe in our endevors, and to glorifie him for his blessings.
Bai. You have divinely concluded: And I wish not onely the wordes of mouth, but the substance of your meaning were fully ingraven, and truly seated in the hearts of all that labour. So, no doubt, but the Lord would bee alwayes readie to blesse their indevours: Although indeed Job saith, The earth is given into the hands of the wicked, and they waxe old and wealthie. And David in divers and su~dry places declareth that the wicked prosper most n the world. And I tell you, it is a daunting [Page 244]unto weake men, that thinke they serve God truely, and many tymes it goeth worse with them, then with such as seeme seldome or never to call upon his name.
Sur. But when David considered the end of these men, he could say, that the Lord had set them in slippery places. And that they that are blessed of God, shall inherit the earth: And whatsoever they do, it shall prosper. Therefore I say, that he that commendeth his labour unto the Lord, and the successe of all his indevors unto his divine providence, who doth and can alwayes bring all things to passe for our best good, whether it bee the full fruits of the earth for our releefe and comfort, or scarcitie and want, for our tryall, he is sure to stand fast, and shall be as a tree planted by the rivers side, whose leafe shall never wither: And in the same time of dearth, he shall have enough to sustayne his necessitie.
Bay. It is a good and holy resolution, on which all men ought to rest themselves, with a faithful and patient expectation. And therefore hee that hath far and fruitfull ground, let him bee laborious and thankfull: and hee that hath leane and barraine, let him be painfull and patient.
Sur. You say well, and so I leave you. And for other matters, & better satisfactions in these things thus superficially discoursed, I referre you to the advice of the better able to resolve you. I will returne to my former taske.
Bayly. I thanke you for your patience and pains, and I commend you to your labours. And as your occasions shall challenge my further poore service, I shall be readie.