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From every shire the pious ramblers stray,
But most to Canterbury bend their way.
There at the * Martyr's shrine a cure they find,
For each sick body, and each love-sick mind.

It so befel, that season, on a day,
In Southwark, at the Talbot-Inn I lay,
Resolved with zeal my journey to begin ;
With no small offering to St. Thomas' shrine.
For Priests with empty thanks are never shammid;
The rich buy heaven, and ragged rogues are
Their sex, and what condition they were in;
This rule observ'd, I with the knight begin.

damn'd. Full nine and twenty more, a jovial crew, (Mine host was ravish'd at a sight so new) That night, by fair adventure sought our inn! All pilgrims, fixt upon the same design. When most with care had seen their horses fed, Happy were they who got a cleanly bed. With each I talk'd, and each by name could call, So quickly grew familiar with them all. There we resolved with speed to make our way, And all set forward at the break of day. But hold a while; 'twere requisite you knew, Ere I proceed, each pilgrim of the crew. I'll here relate their characters, their age, Describe their persons, and their equipage,

* Thomas Becket.

The Knight.

A Knight there was, whose early youth had shown
His love to arms, and passion for renown.
Courteous and affable; of honour nice;
A friend to truth, a foe to every

In many brave engagements had he been,
Known foreign courts, and men and manners seen:
In Christendom much fame he had acquired ;
In Turkey he was dreaded and admired.
When Alexandria was besieged and won,
He pass'd the trenches first, and scaled the town.
Granada's siege increas'd the warrior's fame;
And Algier trembled but to hear his name.
In fifteen battels deathless wreaths he got,
Three single combats with success he fought.
Much ground he travellid o'er, for he had seen
Our Saviour's sepulchre in Palestine.
The barbarous infidels had felt his might,
Fierce in engagement, gentle after fight.
In council, as in conduct, wise, and staid;
In conversation, modest as a maid.

Plain and sincere, observant of the right;
In mien and manners, an accomplish'd knight.

A goodly horse he rode, well shaped, and strong;
No gaudy saddle, nor no trappings long.
The arms he wore, were bright, and free from

stain ; His habit serviceable, neat, and plain. With grateful zeal devoutly he was come, To thank the saint that brought him safely home.



The Monk.

Next these a merry Monk appears in place,
Who followed hunting, more than saying mass.
As bravely mounted, as a lord from court;
No well-fed abbot bore a comelier port.
And when in state he ambled, all might hear
The gingling of his bridle, loud and clear,
As far, almost, as any chapel-bell.

This lordly monk, once keeper of a cell,
Held good St. Bennet's order too severe :
St. Maure to his nice judgment did appear

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Too strict, and rigid ; for old dotards fit,
But scorn'd by priests of spirit, and of wit..
One scripture text he blotted with his

That say all hunters are ungodly men.
What shoals of converts would this doctrine raise ?
Shall monks in study pass laborious days ?-
Turn o'er dull fathers, and worm-eaten books,
With dazzled eyes, and melancholy looks ?
Toil with their hands to make the garden neat!
Turn cooks, and baste the roast with their own

sweat ? This Austin humbly did : “Did he ? (saith he) Austin

may do the same again for me.” He lov'd the chase, the hounds melodious

cry, Hounds that run swiftly as the swallows Ay. His sleeves I saw, with furs all lin’d within, From Russia brought, the finest squirrels skin; (Hair-shirts, he said, provok'd the blood to sin.) His hood beneath his double chin to hold, 'Twas fasten'd with a curious clasp of gold, A love-knot at the greater end there was ; His head close shaved, and smooth as any grass. His strutting paunch was seldom disappointed; His broad, full face, shone as it were anointed, His eyes were sleepy, rolling in his head, That stream'd like furnaces of molten lead

Supple his boots, his horse he proudly sate,
You'd take him for a bishop by his state.
Fasts had not made him meagre like a ghost,
But what he was, and goodly as mine host.
A fat, plump swan he loved, young, but full grown.
His horse was sleek, and as the berry brown.

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