And nowe because we have sufficiently spoken, (though not so much as you desire) touching the regard of the person, for that our spéeche hath reference as well to Maydens as men Servaunts, and because there hath béene nothing left out that belongeth to a Husband, a Maister, or a Housekeeper: I thinke it requisite to come to that, which we devised and devided for the second part of our discourse: that is, of Wealth or substance, wherein we wil effectually make mention of the duetie of a Huswife, and of womens busines. The care of wealth or substance, as we said before, is imployed toConservation andEncrease, and is devided betwixt the Master and Mistresse, because the encrease is as proper to the Maister, as the keeping to the Mistresse, howbeit to him (that perticulerly considereth the care of the encrease) it is proper to the Maister, and the other common, whatsoever others heertofore have spoken to this purpose. But forasmuch as nothing can be encreased that is not first, and wholy kept togeather: the Housekeeper that is desirous to preserve his wealth, should perticulerly know the quallitie, and quantity of his revenues and expences, wherewith he is to keepe his house, and to maintaine his family with credit, and (measuring the manner of his revenewes, with the issue of his[Page]charges) so to live, as his expence may proove the least, making that proportion with his comings in, as foure to eight, or sixe at least, for he that spends as much, as he receives of his possessions, cannot recover those losses, which by chaunce or Fortune may betide him: as by fires, tempests, inundations, & other such, nor supply the necessity of some expence, which (béeing accidentall) cannot be provided for. Furthermore, (to be certified of his substance, and the value of his riches) it be hooves that he himselfe have séene, and measured his possessions, even with those compasses, which gave begining to GeometryinEgypt; which though they be divers according to the variety of Countreys, is (notwithstanding) no occasion ofsubstantiall difference; it also behooveth that he knowe, that what he reapes be aunswerable unto that he sowed, and with what proportion, the earth restoreth that which it receiveth: and as requisit it is, that hee take ye like notice of all whatsoever els belongeth, to husbandry or grazing, and no lesse to harken after the prices, that are sette by publique Magistrates, or by consent of Marketfolks within the Countrey where he dwelleth, then to be enformed how they buy or sell inTuryno, Myllan, Lyons, or Venice,wherof (béeing well advertised and instructed) he cannot be deceived by his Bailiesfe, béeing a Husbandman, or abused by his Factor béeing a Merchaunt. But forasmuch as I have said, that he ought to be advised, both of the quantity and quallitie, of that which he possesseth: (I call not onely that Quantitie which is measured by Geometrie, as are Fields, Medowes, Woods, or that which is accustomd to be numbred by Algorisme, as Flocks and Heards, but that which is accounted as gold or silver coyned) for (in the quadering and making even of the enteries, with the expences) no quantity is more to be considered, then that of money, which may bee gathered and received of Rent, and such like revenewes, which is often chaunging and incertaine: for Landes are not alwaies let at one rate, their price and profits rise and fall as other meane things, or things of more account.
In [Page 19] which incertainty and variable state of thinges, a good Husbands judgment, experience, & dilligence so much prevailes, as not only is sufficient to preserve, but to encrease his substance, which béeing in the manurance and handling of an ignorant, or overwéener, dooth not onely decrease, but perisheth.
That call I Quallity of substance then, that is artificial or naturall, of living things, or things without life: Arteficiall are moveables or houshold implements, and hapely the house it selfe, and money which was first found out by mans appointment. Because we may live without it, as they dyd in the old time, wherin exchaunge of things was made with out returne of money: afterward (by the lawe of man) was mony invented, whereupon it was called Numus of [...], which (by the Greeke interpretation) signifiethLaw, which commodiously fitting, and making equall things exchanged, hath made the entercourse of buying and selling, very easie, and more certaine, then when they onely used exchaunge.
Arteficiallriches may all those things be called, wherein the workmanship of the Maister is rather solde and more estéemed, then the matter or the thing made:Naturallare those that are produced by Nature, whereof also some are without life, as Lands, Medowes, Mettals, and some with life, as Flocks & Heards, whereof the good Housekeeper (oftentime) receiveth profit. Further it commeth into the consideration ofQuallitie, to know whether the Landes or possessions, lye neere or far from any Cittie, if they joyne to any standing Lake or Poole, by the exhalation of whose evill vapours, the ayre becommeth filthy and infected: or whether any Springs or Ryvers be adjacent, which by (ofte recorse and refluence) may gather vertue, to refine and purge the ayre: and whether they be guirt or environed with hylles, or lye open to the winds, whether uppon the bancks (to any navigable water) or in a champant Countrey: whereby the commodities raised thereupon, may be transported easily in Carres, or other carriages unto the Cittie, or whether it lie[Page]stéepeward downe the hyls, uneasie and painful to be past, so that he must needs be chargde wt sompter men: whether it be néere to any high way or common stréet, through which the Travailers, Italian Merchants, or those ofGermany orFraunce are used to passe: or far from frequence, or resort of Passengers, or such as use to bartre or exchaunge: if aloft, where it lyes in prospect, or below in some Valley, where it may be overflowne: all which conditions, as they much increase and deminish the price and value of the things possest, so may they be occasion of sparing in expences, and teach thée to conserve and multiply thy Revenewes, if (like a good husband) thou advise thee and consider it.
But to come somewhat more perticulerly to the care and regard, that is (indeede) required, he should so provide that whatsoever is necessarye for the use of his house in the Cittie, be brought from his Ferme or Mannor in the Countrey, and to leave his house there, furnished of so much as may suffise him and his family when he shall bee disposed to sojourne there, and to sell the rest at such convenient time as things are déerest, and with the mony that ariseth thereof, to buy those things which his owne possessions yéeld not, and yet are necessary for a Gentleman, now & then when they are better cheape. All which he may easily doo, if in sparing that expence he used at first, he reserve some mony overplus: againe, he may kéepe his mony by him many times, when by his own conjecture, opinion of Prognostications, or spéech of other mens experience he heares, or feareth any dearth or scarcity, and then to lay it out when hee perceives the great aboundaunce of the yere, and fruitfulnes of seasons, remembring that example of Thales, who (through his knowledgeThales, one of the seven wise men of Greece.of naturall things) suddainly became rich, with a bargaine that he made for Dyle. Thys shall bee the Husbands rare. But such things whatsoever as are brought into the house, eyther from the Countrey, or bought about in Markets, shal be wholy recommended to the wyves charge, who is to kéep and set them up, in severall places, according to their natures,[Page 20]for some would be kept moyst and cold, and some dry, othersome would be one while set in the Sunne, another while in the winde, some wilbe long kept, othersome a little while, all which a good huswife (well considering) shold cause those that wyll not kéepe, to be first eaten, and make store of the rest. Howbeit, those also that will not kéepe, (without corruption) may be holpen many waies, and made to kéep long. For Salt and vineger doo not onely keepe flesh long time sweete, and seazoned, but fish and fowle, which will bee suddainly corrupt. Besides, many sorts of fruit that will quickly putrefie and perish, if they be sharpe or tarte (otherwise not) wil be long maintaind in Vineger. Likewise the hanging up in smoke, or baking of some kinds of flesh, or fish and divers sorts of fruits, drawes away theyr moysture, (that is cause of their corruption) and maketh that they may be kept the longer.