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Sir Politick. Not all, sir, but
I have some general notions. I do love
For mine own private use; and know the ebbs
Peregrine. Believe it, sir, I hold
Myself in no small tie unto my fortunes,
Sir Politick. Why, came you forth
Empty of rules for travel?
Peregrine. Faith, I had
Some common ones, from out that vulgar grammar, Which he that cried Italian to me, taught me.
Sir Politick. Why this it is which spoils all our brave bloods,
Trusting our hopeful gentry unto pedants,
To be, where I have been consulted with,
In this high kind, touching some great men's sons,
Persons of blood and honour.
EVERY MAN IN HIS HUMOUR
OLD Knowell is the father of Edward Knowell, a studious youth, and uncle of Master Stephen, a stupid, ill-conditioned country bumpkin. Stephen takes offence at a servant who brings a letter for Edward Knowell from Wellbred, his friend. Old Knowell opens this letter, which contains an invitation to a merry-making and some ridicule of himself. Fearing that his son has fallen into bad company, he resolves to follow him.
Edward Knowell, Wellbred, and Stephen (who is the butt of the others), come across Captain Bobadill, a braggart and coward, and Master Matthew, a town fool, as Stephen is a country fool. The young men go to the house of Kitely, a merchant, where Wellbred, who is Kitely's wife's brother, frequently entertains his friends, to the annoyance of Kitely, he being a prey to jealousy. Meanwhile Brainworm, servant to Old Knowell, assumes the disguise of an old soldier, in the interests of Edward Knowell, to prevent his father from meeting him, and afterwards in various other disguises causes many complications and misunderstandings, which are finally all cleared up at the house of Justice Clement, 'an old, merry magistrate.'
A Room in KNOWELL'S House.
Enter E. KNOWELL with a letter in his hand, followed by BRAINWORM.
E. Knowell. Did he open it, say'st thou? Brainworm. Yes, o' my word, sir, and read the
E. Knowell. That scarce contents me. What
countenance, prithee, made he in the reading of it? Was he angry, or pleased?
Brainworm. Nay, sir, I saw him not read it, nor open it, I assure your worship.
E. Knowell. No! how know'st thou then that he did either?
Brainworm. Marry, sir, because he charged me, on my life, to tell nobody that he opened it; which, unless he had done, he would never fear to have it revealed.
E. Knowell. That's true: well, I thank thee, Brain
Stephen. O, Brainworm, didst thou not see a fellow here in what-sha-call-him doublet? he brought mine uncle a letter e'en now.
Brainworm. Yes, Master Stephen, what of him? Stephen. O, I have such a mind to beat himwhere is he, canst thou tell?
Brainworm. Faith, he is not of that mind: he is gone, Master Stephen.
Stephen. Gone! which way? when went he? how long since ?
Brainworm. He is rid hence; he took horse at the street-door.
Stephen. And I staid in the fields! . . . Scanderbag rogue! O that I had but a horse to fetch him back
Brainworm. Why, you may have my master's gelding, to save your longing, sir.
Stephen. But I have no boots, that's the spite on 't. Brainworm. Why, a fine wisp of hay, roll'd hard, Master Stephen.
Stephen. No, faith, it's no boot to follow him now: let him e'en go and hang. Prithee, help me to truss me a little he does so vex me
Brainworm. You'll be worse vexed when you are trussed, Master Stephen. Best keep unbraced, and walk yourself till you be cold; your choler may founder you else.
Stephen. By my faith, and so I will, now thou tell'st me on 't how dost thou like my leg, Brainworm?
Brainworm. A very good leg, Master Stephen; but the woollen stocking does not commend it so well.
Stephen. Foh! the stockings be good enough, now summer is coming on, for the dust: I'll have a pair of silk against winter, that I go to dwell in the town. I think my leg would show in a silk hose.
Brainworm. Believe me, Master Stephen, rarely
Stephen. In sadness, I think it would I have a reasonable good leg.
Brainworm. You have an excellent good leg, Master Stephen; but I cannot stay to praise it any longer now, and I am very sorry for it.
Stephen. Another time will serve, Brainworm. Gramercy for this.
E. Knowell. Ha, ha, ha!
Stephen. 'Slid, I hope he laughs not at me; an he do
E. Knowell. Here was a letter indeed, to be intercepted by a man's father, and do him good with him! He cannot but think most virtuously of me, and the sender, sure, that make the careful costermonger of him in our familiar epistles. Well, if he read this with patience, I'll troll ballads for Master John Trundle yonder, the rest of my mortality. It is true, and likely, my father may have as much patience as another man, for he takes much physic; and oft taking physic makes a man very patient. But would your packet, Master Wellbred, had arrived at him in such a minute of his patience! then had we known the end of it, which is now doubtful, and threatens. Sees Master STEPHEN. What, my wise cousin! nay, then I'll furnish our feast with one gull more towards the mess. He writes to me of a brace, and here's one, that 's three; oh, for a fourth, Fortune, if ever thou 'lt use thine eyes, I entreat thee
Stephen. Oh, now I see who he laughed at : he laughed at somebody in that letter. By this good light, an he had laughed at me
E. Knowell. How now, cousin Stephen, melancholy?