The Pennyless Pilgrimage
The Money-lesse perambulation,
of JOHN TAYLOR, Alias
the Kings Majesties
HOW HE TRAVAILED ON FOOT
from London to Edenborough inScotland, not carrying
any Money to or fro, neither Begging, Borrow
ing, or Asking Meate, drinke or
With his Description of his Entertainment
in all places of his Journey, and a true Report
of the unmatchable Hunting in theBrea
of Marre and Badenoch in
With other Observations, some serious and
worthy of Memory, and some merry
and not hurtfull to be Remembred.
Lastly that (which is Rare in a Travailer)
all is true.
Printed by Edw: All de, at the charges of the
PUBLISHED BY Edw: All de
RIght Honorable, and worthy honour'd Lord, as in my Trauailes, I was Entertain'd, welcom'd, and relieu'd by many Honourable Lords, Worshipfull Knights, Esquires, Gentlemen, and others, both in England, & Scotland. So now your Lordships Inclination hath incited, or inuited my poore Muse to shelter herselfe [Page] under the shadow of your Honourable Patronage, not that there is any worth at all in my sterill inuention, but in all Humilitie I acknowledge that it is onely your Lordships acceptance, that is able to make this nothing, something, and withall engage me euer.
REader, these Trauailes of mine into Scotland, were not vndertaken, neither in imitation, or emulation of any man, but onely deuised by my selfe, on purpose to make triall of my friends, both in this Kingdome of England, and that of Scotland, and because I would be an eye witnesse of diuers things which I had heard of that Country; and whereas many shallowbrain'd Critickes, doe lay an aspersion on me, that I was set on by others, or that I did vndergoe this project, either in malice, or mockage of Maister Beniamin Ionson, I vow by the faith of a Christian, that their imaginations are all wide, for he is a Gentleman, to whom I am so much obliged for many vndeserued courtesies that I haue receiued from him, and from others by his fauour, that I durst neuer to be so impudent or ingratefull, as either to suffer any mans perswasions, or mine owne instigation, to incite me, to make so bad a requitall, for so much goodnesse formerly receiued; so much for that, and now Reader, if you expect
and me, whilst I rest
yours in all thankfulnes:
In this Towne of Newcastle, I ouertooke an Hostler, and I asked him what the next towne was called, that was in my way toward Lancaster, he holding the end of a riding rod in his mouth, as if it had beene a Fluit, piped me this answere, and said, Talke on the hill; I asked him againe what hee said, Talke on the hill: I demaunded the third time, and the third time he answered me as he did before, Talke on the hill. I began to grow chollericke, and asked him why hee could not [Page] talke, or tell mee my way as well there, as on the hill; at last I was resolued, that the next Towne was foure miles off mee, and the name of it was, Talke on the hill. I had not trauailed aboue two miles farther: but my last nights supper (which was asmuch as nothing) my mind being enformed of it by my stomacke. I made a vertue of necessity, and went to breakfast in the sunne: I haue sared better at three sunnes many a time before now, in Aldersgate streete, Creeplegate, and new Fishstreete; but here is the oddes, at those Sunnes they will come vpon a man with a Tauerne bill, as sharpe cutting as a Taylors bill of Items: A Watch-mans blil, or a Welch-hooke falles not halfe so heauy vpon a man; besides, most of the Vintners haue the law in their owne hands, and haue all their Actions, Cases, Bills of Debt, and such Reckonings tried at their owne Barres; from whence there is no appeale. But leauing these impertinencies, in the materiall Sunne-shiee, wee eate a substantiall Dinner, and like miserable Guestes wee did budget vp the Reuersions.
To the purpose then; my first nights Lodging in Scotland was at a place called Mophot, which they say is thirty miles from Carlile, but I suppose them to be longer then forty of such miles as are betwixt London and S. Albanes, (but indeed the Scots doe allow almost as large measure of their miles, as they doe of their drinke, for an English Gallon either of Ale or Wine, is but their quart, and one Scottish mile now and then may well stand for a mile and a halfe or two English) but howsoeuer short or long, I found that dayes iourney the weariest that euer I footed; and at night being come to the Towne, I found good ordinary Countrey entertainment; my fare, and my lodging was sweete and good, and might haue serued a far better man then my selfe, although my selfe haue had many times better: but this is to be noted, that though it Rained not all the day, yet it was my fortune to be well wet twise, for I waded ouer a great Riuer called Eske in the morning, somewhat more then 4. miles distance from Carlile in England, and at night within two miles of my lodging, I was faine to wade ouer the Riuer of Annan in Scotland, from which Riuer the County of Annandale hath it's name. And whilst I waded on foote, my man was mounted on horse-backe, like the George without the Dragon. But the next morning, I arose and left Mophot behind me, and that day I trauailed twenty one miles to a sory Village called Blithe, but I was blithe my selfe to come to any place of harbour or succour, for since I was borne, I neuer was so weary, or so neere being dead with extreame [Page] trauell; I was founderd and refounderd of all foure, and for my better comfort, I came so late, that I must lodge without doore all night, or else in a poore house where the good wife lay in Child-bed, her husband being from home, her owne seruant Mayd being her nurse. A Creature naturally compacted and artificially adorned with incomparable homelines; but as thinges were I must either take or leaue, and necessity made me enter, where we gat Egges and Ale by measure and by tale. At last to bed I went, my man lying on the floore by me, where in the night there were Pidgeons did very bountifully mute in his face: the day being no sooner come, and I hauing but fifteene miles to Ederborough, mounted vpon my ten toes, and began first to hobble, and after to Amble, and so being warme, I fell to pace by degrees; all the way passing through a most plentifull, and firtill Countrey for Corne and Cattle: and about two of the clocke in the afternoone that Wednesday, being the thirteenth of August, and the day of Clare the Virgin (the Signe being in Virgo) the Moone foure dayes olde, the winde at, West, I came to take rest, at the wished, long expected, Auncient famous Citty of Edenborough, which I entred like pierce penilesse, altogether monyles, but I thanke God not friendlesse; for being there, for the time of my stay I might borrow, (if any man would lend) spend if I could get, begge if I had the impudence, and steale if I durst aduenture the price of a hanging, but my purpose was to house my horse, and to suffer him and my Apparell to Lye in durance, or Lauender in stead of Litter, till such time, as I could meete with some valiant friend that would desperately disburse.
Walking thus downe the street, (my body being tyred with Trauell, and my minde attyred with moody, muddy, Moore-ditch melancholly) my Contemplation did deuoutly pray, that I might meete one or other to prey vpon, being willing to take any slender acquaintance of any man whatsoeuer, viewing, and circumuiewing euery mans face I met, as if I meant to draw his picture, but all my acquaintance [Page] was Non est inuentus, (pardon me Reader, that Latine is none of mine owne, I sweare by Priscians Pericranion, an oath which I haue ignorantly broken many times.) At last I resolu'd, that the next Gentleman that I met withall, should be acquaintance whether he would or no, and presently fixing mine eyes vpon a Gentleman-like obiect, I looked on him as if I would suruay something through him, and make him my perspectiue: and he much musing at my gazing, and I much gazing at his musing, at last hee crost the way and made toward me, and then I made downe the streete from him, leauing him to encounter with my man who came after me leading my Horse, whome hee thus Accosted. My friend (quoth hee) doth yonder Gentleman, (meaning mee) know mee that he lookes so wistly on me; truely Sr. said my man I thinke not, but my Mr. is a stranger come from London, and would gladly meete with some acquaintance to direct him where he may haue lodging and horse-meate: presently the Gentleman, (being of a generous disposition) ouer-tooke me with vnexpected and vndeserued courtesie, brought me to a lodging, and caused my Horse to bee put into his owne Stable, whilest we discoursing ouer a pinte of Spanish. I related asmuch English to him as made him lend me Ten shillings, (his name was Mr. Iohn Maxwell) which money I am sure was the first that I handled after I came from out the walles of London: but hauing rested two houres and refreshed my selfe, the Gentleman and I walked to see the Citty, and the Castle, which as my poore vnable and vnworthy pen can, I will truely discribe.
The Castle on a loftie Rocke is so strongly grounded, bounded, and founded, that by force of man it can neuer bee confounded; the Foundation and Walles are vnpenetrable, the Rampiers Impregnable, the Bulwarkes Inuincible, no way but one to it is or can be possible to be made passable. In a word, I haue seene many Straights and Fortresses, in Germany, the Netherlands, Spaine, and England, but they must all giue place to this vnconquered Castle both for strength and Scituation.
Amongst the many memorable thinges which I was shewed there, I noted especially a Great peece of Ordinance of Iron, it is not for batterie, but it will serue to defend a breach, or to tosse balles of wildefire against any that should assaile or assault the Castle; it lyes now dismounted. And it is so great within, that it was tolde mee that a Childe was once gotten there, but I to make tryall crept into it, lying on my backe, and I am sure there was Roome enough and spare for a greater then my selfe.
So leauing the Castle, as it is both defenciue against any opposition, and magnificke for Lodging and Receite, I descend lower to the Citty, wherein I obserued the fairest and goodliest Street that euer mine eyes beheld, for I did neuer see or heare of a streete of that length, (which is halfe an English mile from the Castle to a faire Port which they call the Neather-bow) and from that Port the streete which they call the Kenny-hate is one quarter of a mile more: downe to the Kings Pallace called Holy-rood-House, The buildings on each side of the way being all of squared stone, fiue, sixe, and seauen Storyes high, and many by Lanes and Closes on each side of the way, wherein are Gentlemens houses, much fairer then the buildings in the high streete, for in the High-street the Marchants and Tradesmen doe dwell, but the Gentlemens mansions and goodliest Houses are obscurely founded in the aforesaid Lanes: the Walles are eight or ten Foote thicke, exceeding strong, not built for a day, a weeke, or a month, or a yeare; but from Antiquitie to Posteritie, for many Ages; There I found entertainment beyond my expectation or merite, and there is Fish, Flesh, Bread and Fruite, in such variety, that I thinke I may offencelesse call it superfluitie, or sacietie. The worst was, that Wine and Ale was so scarce, and the people there such Mizers of it, that euery night before I went to bed, if any man had asked mee a Ciuill question, all the wit in my head could not haue made him a Sober answer.
I was at his Maiesties Pallace, a Stately and princely seate, wherein I saw a sumptuous Chappell most richly adorned, with all apurtenances belonging to so sacred a place, or so Royall an owner. In the inner Court, I saw the Kings Armes cunningly carued in stone, and fixed ouer a doore aloft on the wall, the red Lyon being the Crest, ouer which was written this inscription in Latine,
I enquired what the English of it was? it was told me as followeth, which I thought worthy to be recorded.
This is a worthy and a memorable Motto, and I thinke few Kingdomes or none in the world can truly write the like, that notwithstanding so many inroades, incursions, attempts, assaults, ciuill warres, and forraigne hostilities, bloodie battels, and mightie foughten fields, that maugre the strength and pollicie of enemies, that Royall Crowne and Scepter hath from one hundred and seauen descents, keepe still vnconquered, and by the power of the King of Kings (through the grace of the Prince of peace) is now left peacefully to our peacefull King, whom long in blessed peace, the God of peace defend and gouerne.
But once more, a word or two of Edinborough, although I haue scarcely giuen it that due which belongs vnto it, for their lofty and stately buildings, and for their faire and spacious streete, yet my minde perswades me that they in former ages that first founded that Citie, did not so well in that they built it in so discommodious a place; for the Sea, and all nauigable Riuers, being the chiefe meanes for the enriching of Townes and Cities, by the reason of Traffique with forraigne Nations, with exportation, transportation, and receite of variety of Marchantdizing; so this Citie had it beene built but one mile lower on the Sea side, I doubt not but it had long before this beene comparable to many a one of our greatest Townes and Cities in Europe, both for spaciousnesse of bounds, Port, state, and riches. It is said [Page] that King Iames the fifth (of famous memorie) did graciously offer to purchase for them, and to bestow vpon them freely, certaine lowe and pleasant grounds a mile from them on the Sea shore, with these conditions, that they should pull downe their Citie, and build it in that more commodious place, but the Citizens refused it: and so now it is like (for me) to stand where it doth, for I doubt such another proffer of remoueall will not be presented to them, till two dayes after the Faire.
Now haue with you for Leeth, whereto I no sooner came, but I was well entertained by Mr. Barnard Lindsay, one of the Groomes of his Maiesties Bed-chamber, hee knew my estate was not guilty, because I brought no guilt with mee (more then my sinnes, and they would not passe for current there) hee therefore did replenish the vaustity of my emptie purse, and discharged a peece at mee with two bullets of gold, each being in value worth eleuen shillings white money: and I was credibly informed that within the compasse of one yeare, there was shipped away from that onely Port of Leeth, fourescore thousand Boles of Wheate, Oates, and Barley, into Spaine, France, and other forraigne parts, and euery Bole containes the measure of foure English bushels, so that from Leeth onely hath beene transported three hundred and twenty thousand bushels of Corne; besides some hath beene shipped away from St. Andrewes, from Dundee, Aberdeene, Disert, Kirkady, Kinghorne, Burnt-Iland, Dunbar, and other portable Townes, which makes mee to wonder that a Kingdome so populous as it is, should neuerthelesse sell so much bread corne beyond the Seas, and yet to haue more then sufficient for themselues.
So I hauing viewed the Hauen and Towne of Leeth, tooke a passage Boate to see the new wondrous Well, to which many a one that is not well, comes farre and neere in hope to be made well: indeede I did heare that it had done much good, and that it hath a rare operation to expell or kill diuers maladies; as to prouoke appetite, to helpe much for the [Page] auoyding of the grauell in the bladder, to cure sore eyes, and olde vlcers, with many other vertues which it hath, but I (through the mercy of God hauing no neede of it, did make no great inquisition what it had done, but for nouelty I dranke of it, and I found the taste to be more pleasant then any other water, sweet almost as milke, yet as cleare as cristall, and I did obserue that though a man did drinke a quart, a pottell, or as much as his belly could containe, yet it neuer offended or lay heauie vpon the stomacke, no more then if one had dranke but a pint or a small quantity.
I went two miles from it to a towne called Burnt-Iland, where I found many of my especiall good friends, as M. Robert Hay, one of the Groomes of his Maiesties Bed-chamber, Maister Dauid Drummond, one of his Gentlemen Pentioners, Maister Iames Acmooty, one of the Groomes of the Priuie Chamber, Captaine Marray, Sir Henry Witherington Knight, Captaine Tyrie, and diuers others: and there Master Hay, Maister Drummond, and the good olde Captaine Murray, did very bountifully furnish mee with gold for my expences, but I being at dinner with those aforesaid Gentlemen, as we were discoursing, there befell a strange accident, which I thinke worth the relating.
I know not vpon what occasion they began to talke of being at Sea in former times, and I (amongst the rest) said I was at the taking of Cales, whereto an English Gentleman replied, that he was the next good voyage after at the Ilands: I answered him that I was there also. He demanded in what Ship I was? I tolde him in the Rainebowe of the Queenes, why (quoth hee) doe you not know mee? I was in the same Ship, and my name is Witherington.
Sir, said I, I doe remember the name well, but by reason that it is neere two and twenty yeeres since I saw you, I may well forget the knowledge of you: well, said hee, if you were in that Ship, I pray you tell me some remarkable token that happened in the voyage: whereupon I tolde him two or three tokens which hee did know to be true. Nay then [Page] said I, I will tell you another which (perhaps) you haue not forgotten; as our Ship and the rest of the fleete did ride at Anchor at the Ile of Flores (one of the Isles of the Azores) there were some fourteene men and boyes of our Ship, that for nouelty would goe a shore, and see what fruit the I land did beare, and what entertainement it would yeeld vs: so being landed, wee went vp and downe and could finde nothing but stones, heath and mosse, and wee expected Oranges, Limonds, Figges, Muske-millions, and Potatoes: in the meane space the winde did blow so stiffe, and the Sea was so extreame rough, that our Ship-boate could not come to the land to fetch vs, for feare she should be beaten in pieces against the rockes; this continued fiue dayes, so that wee were all almost famished for want of foode: but at last (I squandring vp and downe) by the prouidence of God I happened into a Caue or poore habitation, where I found fifteene loaues of bread, each of the quantity of a penny loafe in England, I hauing a valiant stomacke of the age of almost 120. houres breeding, fell too, and eate two loaues and neuer said grace: and as I was about to make a Horse-loafe of the third loafe, I did put 12. of them into my breeches, and my sleeues, and so went mumbling out of the Caue, leaning my backe against a tree, when vpon the sodaine a Gentleman came to me and saide, friend what are you eating, bread quoth I, for Gods sake said hee giue me some, with that I put my hand into my breech, (beeing my best pantrey) and I gaue him a Loafe, which hee receiued with many thankes, and saide that if euer hee could requite it hee would.
I had no sooner tolde this tale but Sr. Henry Witherington did acknowledge himselfe to bee the man that I had giuen the Loafe vnto 22. yeares before, where I found the Prouerbe true that men haue more priuiledge then mountaines in meeting.
In what great measure, hee did requite so small a courtesie, I will relate in this following discourse in my Returne [Page] through Northumberland: So leauing my man at the towne of Burnt Iland, I tolde him, I would but goe to Sterling, and see the Castle there, and withall to see my honourable friends the Earle of Marr, and Sir William Murray Knight, Lord of Abercarny, and that I would returne within two dayes at the most: But it fell out quite contrary; for it was fiue and thirtie dayes before I could get backe againe out of these Noble-mens company. The whole progresse of my trauell with them, and the cause of my stay, I cannot with gratefulnesse omit; and thus it was.
A worthy Gentleman, named Master Iohn Fenton, did bring mee on my way sixe miles, to Dumfermling, where I was well entertained, and lodged at Master Iohn Gibb his house, one of the Groomes of his Maiesties Bed-chamber, and I thinke the oldest Seruant the King hath: withall I was well entertained there by Master Crighton at his owne house, who went with mee, and shewed mee the Queenes Palace; (a delicate and a princely Mansion) withall I saw the ruines of an auncient and stately built Abbey, with faire Gardens, Orchards, and Medowes belonging to the palace: all which with faire and goodly Reuenues, by the suppression of the Abbey, were annexed to the Crowne. There also I saw a very faire Church, which though it be now very large and spacious, yet it hath in former times been much larger. But I taking my leaue of Dumfermling, would needs goe and see the truely noble Knight Sir George Bruce, at a Towne called the Cooras: there hee made mee right welcome, both with varietie of fare, and discourse; and after all, hee commaunded three of his men to direct mee to see his most admirable Cole-mines; which (if man can or could worke wonders) is a wonder: for my selfe neither in any trauels that I haue been in, nor any History that I haue read, or any Discourse that I haue heard, did neuer see, reade, or heare of any worke of man that might parallell or be equiualent with this vnfellowed and vnmatchable worke: and though all I can say of it, cannot describe it according to the [Page] worthinesse of his vigilant industry, that was both the occasion, Inuentor, and Maintainer of it: yet rather then the memory of so rare an Enterprise, and so accomplisht a profit to the Common-wealth shall bee raked and smothered in the dust of obliuion, I will giue a little touch at the description of it, although I amongst Writers, am like he that worst may, holds the candle.
The Mine hath two wayes into it, the one by sea and the other by land; but a man may go into it by land, and returne the same way if he please, and so he may enter into it by sea, and by Sea hee may come foorth of it: but I for varieties sake went in by Sea, and out by Land. Now men may obiect, how can a man goe into a Mine, the entrance of it being in the Sea, but that the Sea wil follow him and so drown the Mine. To which obiection thus I answer, That at a low water, the Sea being ebd away, and a great part of the sand bare; vpon this same sand (beeing mixed with rockes and cragges) did the Master of this great worke build a round circular frame of stone, very thicke, strong, and ioyned together with glutinous or bitunous matter, so high withall. that the Sea at the highest flood, or the greatest rage of storme or tempest, can neither dissolue the stones so well compacted in the building, or yet ouerflowe the height of it. Within this round frame, (at all aduentures) hee did set workemen to digge with Mattockes, Pickaxes, and other instruments fit for such purposes. They did digge more then fourtie foot downeright, into and through a Rocke. At last they found that which they expected, which was Sea-cole, they following the veine of the Mine, did digge forward still: So that in the space of eight and twentie, or nine and twenty yeares they haue digged more then an English mile under the Sea, that when men are at worke belowe, an hundred of the greatest Shippes in Britaine may saile ouer their [...]. Besides, the Mine is most artificially cut like an Arch or a Vault all that great length, with many nookes and bywayes in it: and it is so made, that a man may walke vpright [Page] in the most places, both in and out. Many poore people are there set on worke, which otherwise through the want of imployment would perish. But when I had seene the Mine, and was come foorth of it againe; after my thankes giuen to Sir George Bruce, I tolde him, that if the plotters of the Powder Treason in England had seene this Mine, that they (perhaps) would haue attempted to haue left the Parliament House, and haue vndermined the Thames, and so to haue blowne vp the Barges and Wherries, wherein the King, and all the Estates of our Kingdome were. Moreouer, I said that I could affoord to turne Tapster at London: so that I had but one quarter of a mile of his Mine to make mee a Celler, to keepe Beere and Bottle-ale in. But leauing these Iestes in Prose, I will relate a few Verses that I made merrily of this Mine.
The Sea at certaine places doth leake, or soake into the Mine, which by the industry of Sir George Bruce, is all conueyd to one well neere the land; where hee hath a deuise like a horsemill that with three horses and a great chaine of Iron, going downeward many fadomes, with thirty sixe buckets fastened to the chaine, of the which eighteene goes downe still to be filled, and eighteene ascends vp to be emptied, which doe empty themselues (without any mans labour) into a trough that conueyes the water into the Sea againe; by which meanes he saues his Myne which otherwise [Page] would be destroyed with the Sea, beside he doth make euery weeke ninety or an hundred Tuns of salt, which doth serue part of Scotland, some hee sends into England, and very much into Germany: all which shewes the painefull industry with Gods blessings to such worthy endeauours: I must with many thankes remember his courtesie to mee, and lastly, how he sent his man to guide me ten miles on the way to Sterling, where by the way I saw the outside of a faire and stately house called Allaway, belonging to the Earle of Marr, which by reason that his Honor was not there, I past by and went to Sterling, where I was entertained and lodged at one Mr. Iohn Archibalds, where all my want was that I wanted roome to containe halfe the good cheere that I might haue had there; hee had me into the Castle, which in few words I doe compare to Windsor for scituation, much more then Windsor in strength, and somewhat lesse in greatnes; yet I dare affirme, that his Majesty hath not such another hall to any house that he hath neither in England nor Scotland, except Westminster Hall which is now no dwelling Hall for a Prince being long since metamorphosed into a house for the Law and the profits.
This goodly Hall was built by King Iames the fourth, that married King Henry the eights sister and after was slaine at Flodden field; but it surpasses all the halls for dwelling houses that euer I saw, for length, breadth, height and strength of building, the Castle is built vpon a rocke very lofty, and much beyond Edenborough Castle in state and magnificence, and not much inferiour to it in strength, the roomes of it are lofty, with carued workes on the seelings, the doores of each roome beeing so high that a man may ride vpright on horsebacke into any chamber or lodging. There is also a goodly faire Chappell, with Cellers, Stables, and all other necessary Offices, all very stately and besitting the Maiestie of a King.
From Sterling I rode to Saint Iohnston, a fine Towne it is, [Page] but it is much decayed, by reason of the want of his Maiesties yearely comming to lodge there. There I lodged one night at an Inne, the Goodman of the house his name being Patrick Pettcarne, where my entertainement was with good cheere, good drinke, good lodging, all too good to a bad weary guest. Mine Host tolde mee that the Earle of Marr and Sir William Murray of Abercarny were gone to the great hunting to the Brea of Marre; but if I made hast I might perhaps finde them at a Towne called Breekin, or Breechin, two and thirty miles from Saint Iohns Stone, wherevpon I tooke a guide to Breekin the next day, but before I came, my Lord was gone from thence foure dayes.
Then I tooke another guide, which brought mee such strange wayes ouer mountaines and rockes, that I thinke my horse neuer went the like; and I am sure I neuer saw any wayes that might fellow them. I did goe through a Country called Glaneske, where passing by the side of a hill, so steepe as is the ridge of a house, where the way was rocky, and not aboue a yard broad in some places, so fearefull and horrid it was to looke downe into the bottome, for if either horse or man had slipt, he had fallen (without recouery) a good mile downe-right; but I thanke God, at night I came to a lodging in the Lard of Eggells Land, where I lay at an Irish house, the folkes not being able to speake scarce any English, but I sup'd and went to bed, where I had not laine long but I was enforced to rise, I was so stung with Irish Musketaes, a Creature that hath sixe legs, & liues like a monster altogether vpon mans flesh, they doe inhabite and breed in most sluttish houses, and this house was none of the cleanliest, the beast is much like a louse in England, both in shape and nature; in a word they were to me the A. and the Z. the Prologue and the Epilogue, the first and the last that I had in all my trauells from Edenborough; and had not this highland Irish house helped mee at a pinch, I should haue sworne that all Scotland had not beene so kind [Page] as to haue bestowed a Louse vpon me: but with a shift that I had, I shifted off my Caniballs, and was neuer more troubled with them.
The next day I trauelled ouer an exceeding high mountaine, called mount Skeene, where I found the valley very warme before I went vp it; but when I came to the top of it, my teeth beganne to daunce in my head with colde, like Virginall iackes; and withall, a most familiar mist embraced mee round, that I could not see thrice my length any way: withall, it yeelded so friendly a deaw, that it did moysten through all my clothes: Where the olde Prouerbe of a Scottish Miste was verified, in wetting mee to the skinne. Vp and downe, I thinke this hill is sixe miles, the way so vneuen, stonie, and full of bogges, quagmires, and long heath, that a dogge with three legs will outrunne a horse with foure: for doe what we could, wee were foure houres before we could passe it.
Thus with extreame trauell, ascending and descending, mounting & alighting, I came at night to the place where I would bee, in the Brea of Marr, which is a large Countie, all composed of such mountaines, that Shooters Hill, Gads Hill, Highgate Hill, Hampsted hill, Birdlip hill, or Maluerne hilles, are but Mole-hilles in comparison, or like a Liuer, or a Gizard vnder a Capons wing, in respect of the altitude of their toppes, or perpendicularitie of their bottomes. There I saw Mount Benawne, with a furr'd mist vpon his snowie head in stead of a nightcap: (for you must vnderstand, that the oldest man aliue neuer saw but the snow was on the top of diuers of those hilles, both in Summer, as well as in Winter.) There did I finde the truely Noble and Right Honourable Lords, Iohn Erskin Earle of Marr, Iames Stuart Earle of Murray, George Gordon Earle of Engye, sonne and heire to the Marquesse of Huntley, Iames Erskin, Earle of Bughan, and Iohn Lord Erskin, sonne and heire to the Earle of Marre, and their Countesses, with my much honoured, and my best assured and approoued friend, [Page] Sir William Murray Knight, of Abercarnye, and hundred of others Knights, Esquires, and their followers; all and euery man in generall in one habit, as if Licurgus had beene there and made Lawes of Equalitie: For once in the yeare, which is the whole moneth of August, and sometimes part of September; many of the Nobilitie and Gentry of the Kingdome (for their pleasure) doe come into these high-land Countreyes to hunt, where they doe all conforme themselues to the habite of the high-land men, who for the most part speake nothing but Irish; and in former time were those people which were called the Redshankes: Their habite is shooes with but one sole apiece; stockings (which they call short hose) made of a warme stuffe of diuers colours, which they call Tartane: as for breeches, many of them, nor their forefathers neuer wore any, but a ierkin of the same stuffe that their hose is of, their garters beeing bands or wreathes of hay or straw, with a plead about their shoulders, which is a mantle of diuers colours, much finer and lighter stuffe then their hose, with blew flat caps on their heads, a handkerchiefe knit with two knots about their neckes: and thus are they attyred. Now their weapons are long bowes, and forked arrowes, Swords and Targets, Harquebusses, Muskets, Durks and Loquhabor Axes. With these Armes I found many of them armed for the hunting. As for their Attire, any man of what degree soeuer that comes amongst them, must not disdaine to weare it: for if they doe, then they will disdaine to hunt, or willingly to bring in their dogges: but if men bee kinde vnto them, and bee in their habit; then are they conquered with kindnesse, and the sport will be plentifull. This was the reason that I found so many Noblemen and Gentlemen in those shapes. But to proceed to the Hunting.
My good Lord of Marr hauing put me into that shape, I rode with him from his house, where I saw the ruines of an olde Castle, called the Castle of Kindroghit. It was built by [Page] King Malcolm Canmore (for a hunting horse) who raigned in Scotland when Edward the Confessor, Harold, and Norman William raigned in England: I speake of it, because it was the last house that I saw in those parts; for I was the space of twelue dayes after, before I saw either house, corne fielde, or habitation for any creature, but Deere, wilde Horses, Wolues, and such like Creatures, which made mee doubt that I should neuer haue seene a house againe.
Thus the first day wee traueld 8. miles, where there were small cottages built on purpose to lodge in, which they call Lonquhards, I thanke my good Lord Erskin, he commanded that I should alwayes bee lodged in his lodging, the Kitchin being alwayes on the side of a banke, many Kettles and Pots boyling, and many spits turning and winding, with great variety of cheere: as Venison bak't, sodden, rost, and stu'de Beefe, Mutton, Goates, Kid, Hares, fresh Salmon, Pidgeons, Hens, Capons, Chickins, Partridge, Moorecoots, Heathcocks, Caperkellies and Termagants; good Ale, Sacke, White and Claret, Tent (or Allegant) with most potent Aqua vitae.
All these and more then these wee had continually, in superfluous aboundance, caught by Faulconers, Foulers, and Fishers, and brought by my Lords tenants and purueyers to victuall our Campe, which consisted of fourteene or fifteene hundred men and horses; the manner of the hunting is this. Fiue or sixe hundred men doe rise early in the morning, and they doe disperse themselues diuers wayes, and 7.8. or 10. miles compasse they doe bring or chase in the Deere in many heards, (two, three, or foure hundred in a heard) to such or such a place as the Noblemen shall appoint them; then when day is come, the Lords and Gentlemen of their Companies, doe ride or goe to the said places, sometimes wading vp to the middles through bournes and riuers: and then they being come to the place, [Page] doe lye downe on the ground, till those foresaid Scouts which are called the Tinckhell do bring downe the Deere: But as the Prouerbe sayes of a bad Cooke, so these Tinkhell men doe lick their owne fingers; for besides their bowes and arrowes which they carry with them, wee can heare now and then a harguebuse or a musquet goe off, which they doe seldome discharge in vaine: Then after wee had stayed three houres or thereabouts, wee might perceiue the Deere appeare on the hills round about vs, (their heads making a shew like a wood) which being followed close by the Tinkhell, are chased downe into the valley where wee lay; then all the valley on each side being waylaid with a hundred couple of strong Irish Greyhounds, they are let loose as occasion serues vpon the heard of Deere, that with Dogges, Gunnes, Arrowes, Durks and Daggers, in the space of two houres fourescore fat Deere were slaine, which after are disposed of some one way and some another, twenty or thirty miles, and more then enough left for vs to make merry withall at our Rendeuouze. I liked the sport so well, that I made these two Sonnets following.
Beeing come to our lodgings, there was such Baking, Boyling, Rosting, and Stewing, as if Cooke Ruffian had beene there to haue scalded the Deuill in his feathers: and after supper a fire of firre wood as high as an indifferent May-pole: for I assure you, that the Earle of Marre will giue any man that is his friend, for thankes, as many Firre trees (that are as good as any shippes mastes in England) as are worth (if they were in any place neere the Thames, or any other portable Riuer) the best Earledome in England or Scotland either: For I dare affirme hee hath as many growing there, as would serue for mastes (from this time to the end of the world) for all the Shippes, Carackes, Hoyes, Galleyes, Boates, Drumlers, Barkes, and Water-craftes, that are now, or can bee in the world these fourtie yeares.?
This sounds like a lie to an vnbeleeuer; but I and many thousands doe knowe that I speake within the compasse of truth: for indeede (the more is the pitie) they doe [Page] growe so farre from any passage of water, and withall in such rockie Mountaines, that no way to conuey them is possible to bee passable either with Boate, Horse, or Cart.
Thus hauing spent certaine dayes in Hunting in the Brea of Marr, wee went to the next Countie called Bagenoch, belonging to the Earle of Engye, where hauing such sport and entertainement as wee formerly had; after foure or fiue dayes pastime, wee tooke leaue of hunting for that yeare; and tooke our iourney toward a strong house of the Earles, called Ruthen in Bagenoch, where my Lord of Engye and his noble Countesse (being daughter to the Earle of Argile) did giue vs most noble welcome three dayes.
From thence wee went to a place called Ballo Castle, a faire and stately house; a worthy Gentleman beeing the owner of it, called the Lard of Graunt; his wife beeing a Gentlewoman honourably descended, being sister to the right Honourable Earle of Atholl, and to Sir Patricke Murray Knight; shee beeing both inwardly and outwardly plentifully adorned with the guifts of Grace and Nature: so that our cheere was more then sufficient; and yet much lesse then they could affoord vs. There staied there foure dayes, foure Earles, one Lord, diuers Knights and Gentlemen, and their seruants, footemen and horses; and euery meale foure long Tables furnished with all varieties: Our first and second course beeing threescore Dishes at one boord; and after that alwayes a Banquet: and there if I had not forsworne wine till I came to Edinbrough, I thinke I had there dranke my last.
The fifth day with much adoe wee gate from thence to Tarnaway, a goodly house of the Earle of Murrayes, there that right Honourable Lord and his Ladie did welcome vs foure dayes more. There was good cheere in all varietie, with somewhat more then plentie for aduantage: for indeed the Countie of Murray is the most pleasantess, [Page] and plentifullest Countrey in all Scotland; being plaine land, that a Coach may bee driuen more then foure and thirtie myles one way in it, all alongst by the Seacoast.
From thence I went to Elgen in Murray, an auncient Citie, where there stood a faire and beautifull Church with three steeples, the walles of it and the steeples all yet standing; but the Roofe, Windowes, and many Marble Monuments and Toombes of honourable and worthie personages all broken and defaced: this was done in the time when ruine bare rule, and Knox knock'd downe Churches.
From Elgen we went to the B. of Murray his house which is called Spinye, or Spinaye. A reuerend Gentleman hee is, of the noble name of Dowglasse, where wee were very well welcomed, as befitted the honour of himselfe and his guests.
From thence wee departed to the Lord Marquesse of Huntleyes, to a sumptuous house of his, named the Bogg of Geethe, where our entertainement was like himselfe, free, bountifull and honourable. There (after two dayes stay) with much entreatie and earnest suite, I gate leaue of the Lords to depart towards Edinbrough: the Noble Marquesse, the Earles of Marr, Murray, Engie, Bughan, and the Lord Erskin; all these, I thanke them, gaue me gold to defray my charges in my iourney.
So after fiue and thirtie dayes hunting and trauell, I returning, past by another stately mansion of the Lord Marquesses, called Stroboggy, and so ouer Carny mount to Breekin, where a wench that was borne deafe and dumbe came into my chamber at midnight (I beeing asleepe) and shee opening the bed, would faine haue lodged with mee: But had I beene a Sardanapalus, or a Heliogobalus, I thinke that either the great trauell ouer the Mountaines had tamed me; or if not, her beautie could neuer haue mooued me. The best parts of her were, that her breath was as sweet as sugar-carrion, [Page] being very well shouldered beneath the waste; and as my Hostesse tolde mee the next morning, that shee had changed her Maiden-head for the price of a Bastard not long before. But howsoeuer, shee made such a hideous noyse, that I started out of my sleepe, and thought that the Deuill had beene there: but I no sooner knewe who it was, but I arose, and thrust my dumbe beast out of my chamber; and for want of a locke or a latch, I staked vp my doore with a great chaire.
Thus hauing escaped one of the seuen deadly sinnes at Breekin, I departed from thence to a Towne called Forfard; and from thence to Dundee, and so to Kinghorne, Burnt Iland, and so to Edinbrough, where I stayed eight dayes, to recouer my selfe of falles and bruises which I receiued in my trauell in the highland mountainous Hunting. Great welcome I had shewed mee all my stay at Edinbrough, by many worthy Gentlemen, namely, olde Master George Todrigg, Master Henry Leuingston, Master Iames Henderson, Master Iohn Maxwell, and a number of others, who suffered me to want no wine or good cheere, as may be imagined.
Now the day before I came from Edinbrough, I went to Leeth, where I found my long approoued and assured good friend Master Beniamin Iohnson, at one Master Iohn Stuarts house: I thanke him for his great kindnesse towards mee: for at my taking leaue of him, hee gaue mee a piece of golde of two and twentie shillings to drinke his health in England. And withall, willed mee to remember his kinde commendations to all his friendes: So with a friendly farewell, I left him, as well, as I hope neuer to see him in a worse estate: for hee is amongst Noble-men and Gentlemen that knowes his true worth, and their owne honours, where with much respectiue loue hee is worthily entertained.
So leauing Leeth, I return'd to Edinbrough, and within [Page] the port or gate, called the Netherbowe, I discharged my pockets of all the money I had: and as I came pennilesse within the walles of that Citie at my first comming thither; so now at my departing from thence, I came monesse out of it againe; hauing in my company to conuey mee out, certaine Gentlemen, amongst the which was Master Iames Acherson, Laird of Gasford, a Gentleman that brought mee to his house, where with great entertainement hee and his good wife did welcome me.
On the morrowe he sent one of his men to bring mee to a place, called Adam, to Master Iohn Acmootye his house, one of the Groomes of his Maiesties Bed-chamber; where with him, and his two brethren, Master Alexander, and Master Iames Acmootye, I found both Cheere and Welcome not inferiour to any that I had had in any former place.
Amongst our viands that wee had there, I must not forget the Sole and Goose, a most delicate Fowle, which breedes in great aboundance in a little Rocke called the Basse, which stands two miles into the Sea. It is very good flesh, but it is eaten in the forme as wee eate Oysters, standing at a sideboord, a little before dinner, vnsanctified without grace; and after it is eaten, it must be well liquored with two or three good rowses of Sherrie or Canarie sacke. The Lord or Owner of the Basse doth profite at the least two hundred pound yearely by those Geese; the Basse it selfe being of a great height, and neere three quarters of a mile in campasse, all fully replenished with Wildfowle, hauing but one small entrance into it, with a house, a garden, and a Chappell in it; and on the toppe of it a Well of pure fresh water.
From Adam Mr. Iohn and Mr. Iames Acmootye went to the Towne of Dunbarr with mee, where tenne Scottish pintes of wine were consumed and brought to nothing for a farewell: there at Master Iames Baylies house I tooke [Page] leaue, and Master Iames Acmootye comming for England, said, that if I would ride with him, that neither I nor my horse should want betwixt that place and London. Now I hauing no money or meanes for trauell, beganne at once to examine my manners, and my want: at last my want perswaded my manners to accept of this worthy Gentlemans vndeserued courtesie. So that night hee brought mee to a place called Cober spath, where wee lodged at an Inne, the like of which I dare say, is not in any of his Maiesties Dominions. And for to shewe my thankfulnesse to Master William Arnet and his wife, the owners thereof, I must a little explaine their bonntifull entertainement of guests, which is this:
Suppose tenne, fifteene, or twentie men and horses come to lodge at their house, the men shall haue flesh, tame and wildfowle, fish, with all varietie of good cheere, good lodging, and welcome; and the horses shall want neither hay or prouender: and in the morning at their departure the reckoning is iust nothing. This is this worthy Gentlemans vse, his chiefe delight beeing onely to giue strangers entertainement gratis: And I am sure, that in Scotland beyond Edinbrough I haue beene at houses like Castles for building; the Master of the house his Beauer being his blew Bonnet, one that will weare no other shirts, but of the Flaxe that growes in his owne ground; and of his wiues, daughters, or seruants spinning; that hath his Stockings, Hose, and Ierkin of the Wooll of his owne sheepes backes; that neuer (by his pride of Apparell) caused Mercer, Draper, Silke-man, Embroyderer, or Haberdasher to breake and turne bankerupt: and yet this plaine home-spunne fellow keepes and maintaines thirtie, fourtie, fiftie seruants, or perhaps more, euery day releeuing three or fourescore poore people at his gate; and besides all this, can giue Noble entertainement for foure or fiue dayes together to fiue or sixe Earles and Lords, besides Knights, [Page] Gentlemen & their followers, if they be three or foure hundred men and horse of them, where they shall not onely feed but feast, and not feast but banquet, this is a man that desires to know nothing so much as his duty to God and his King whose greatest cares are to practise the works of Piety, Charity, and Hospitality: hee neuer studies the consuming Art of fashionlesse fashions, hee neuer tries his strength to beare foure or fiue hundred Acres on his backe at once, his legges are alwayes at liberty, not being fettered with golden garters, and manacled with artificiall Roses, whose weight (sometime) is the last Relliques of some decayed Lordship: Many of these worthy house-keepers there are in Scotland, amongst some of them I was entertained; from whence I did truely gather these aforesaid obseruations.
So leauing Coberspath we rode to Barwicke, where the worthy old Soldier and ancient Knight, Sir William Bowyer, made me welcome; but contrary to his will, we lodged at an Inne, where Mr. Iames Acmooty paid all charges: but at Barwicke there was a grieuous chance hapned, which I think not fit the relation to be omitted.
In the Riuer of Tweed, which runnes by Barwicke are taken by Fishermen that dwell there, infinite numbers of fresh Salmons, so that many housholds and families are relieued by the profit of that Fishing; but (how long since I know not) there was an order that no man or boy whatsoeuer should Fish vpon a Sunday: This order continued long amongst them, till some eight or nine weekes before Michaelmas last, on a Sunday, the Salmons plaid in such great aboundance in the Riuer, that some of the Fishermen (contrary to Gods law and their owne order) tooke boates and nettes and Fished, and caught neere three hundred Salmons; but from that time vntill Michaelmas day that I was there which was nine weekes, and heard the report of it, and saw the poore peoples miserable lamentations, they had [Page] not seene one Salmon in the Riuer; and some of them were in despaire that they should neuer see any more there; affirming it to be God, Iudgement vpon them for the prophanation of the Saboth.
The thirtieth of September wee rode from Barwicke to Belford, from Belford to Anwick the next day from Anwick to Newcastle, where I found the noble Knight, Sir Henry Witherington; who, because I would haue no gold nor siluer, gaue mee a bay Mare, in requitall of a loafe of bread that I had giuen him two and twenty yeares before, at the lland of Flores, of the which I haue spoken before. I ouertooke at Newcastle a great many of my worthy friends, which were all comming for London, namely, Maister Robert Hay, and Maister Dauid Drummond, where I was well welcom'd at Maister Nicholas Tempests house. From Newcastle I rode with those Gentlemen to Durham, to Darington, to Northallerton, and to Topeliffe in Yorkshire, where I tooke my leaue of them, and would needs try my pennilesse fortunes by my selfe, and see the Citty of Yorke, where I was lodged at my Right Worshipfull good friends, Maister Doctor Hudson one of his Maiesties Chaplaines, who went with me, and shewed me the goodly Minster Church there, and the most admirable, rare-wrought, vnfellowed Chapter house.
From Yorke I rode to Doncaster, where my horses were well fed at the Beare, but my selfe found out the honourable Knight, Sir Robert Anstruther at his father in lawes, the truely noble Sir Robert Swifts house, hee being then high Sheriffe of Yorkeshire, where with their good Ladies, and the right Honourable the Lord Sanquhar, I was stayed two nights and one day, Sir Robert Anstruther (I thanke him) not onely paying for my two horses meat, but at my departure, hee gaue mee a Letter to Newarke vpon Trent, twenty eight miles in my way, where Mr. George Atkinson mine host made me as welcome as if I had beene a [Page] French Lord, and what was to bee paid, as I cal'd for nothing, I paid as much; and left the reckoning with many thankes to Sir Robert Anstruther.
So leauing Newarke, with another Gentleman that ouertooke mee, wee came at night to Stamford, to the signe of the Virginitie (or the Maydenhead) where I deliuered a Letter from the Lord Sanquhar; which caused Master Bates and his wife, being the Master and Mistresse of the house, to make mee and the Gentleman that was with mee great cheare for nothing.
From Stamford the next day wee rode to Huntington, where wee lodged at the Post-masters house, at the signe of the Crowne; his name is Riggs. Hee was informed who I was, and wherefore I vndertooke this my pennilesse Progresse: wherefore hee came vp into our chamber, and sup'd with vs, and very bountifully called for three quarts of Wine and Sugar, and foure lugges of Beere. Hee did drinke and beginne Healths like a Horse-leech, and swallowed downe his cuppes without feeling, as if he had had the dropsie, or nine pound of Spunge in his maw. In a word, as hee is a Poste, hee dranke poste, striuing and calling by all meanes to make the Reckoning great, or to make vs men of great reckoning. But in his payment hee was tyred like a Iade, leauing the Gentleman that was with mee to discharge the terrible Shott, or else one of my horses must haue laine in pawne for his superfluous calling, and vnmannerly intrusion.
But leauing him, I left Huntington, and rode on the Sunday to Packeridge, where Master Holland at the Faulkon, (mine olde acquaintance) and my louing and auncient Hoste gaue mee, my friend, my man, and our horses excellent good cheere, and welcome, and I paid him with, Not a penie of money.
The next day I came to London, and obscurely comming within Moore-gate, I went to a house and borrowed [Page] money: And so I stole backe againe to Islington, to the signe of the Mayden-head, staying till Wednesday that my friendes came to meete mee, who knewe no other, but that Wednesday was my first comming: where with all loue I was entertained with much good cheere: and after Supper wee had a play of the life and death of Guy of Warwicke, plaied by the Right Honourable the Earle of Darbie his men. And so on the Thursday morning beeing the fifteenth of October, I came home to my house in London.