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Title: Fiue Hundred Pointes of Good Husbandrie

Author: Thomas Tusser

Editor: Sidney J. H. Herrtage

William H. Payne

Release date: April 15, 2016 [eBook #51764]
Most recently updated: April 2, 2024

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Clare Graham and Marc D'Hooghe (Images generously made available by the Internet Archive.)







The Edition of 1580 collated with those of 1573 and 1577. Together with a Reprint, from the Unique Copy in the British Museum, of "A Hundreth Good Pointes of Husbandrie," 1557.



[Pg v]


While for all who take an interest in the customs and life of our ancestors Tusser's writings must always possess considerable interest, to the Members of the English Dialect Society they are especially valuable for the large number of dialectic words and forms which they contain. The Glossary has therefore been made very full, possibly, in the opinion of some, too full; but as this is the most important portion of the work to the Society, I have thought it better to err, if at all, on the right side.

With regard to the preparation of this Edition a few words may be necessary. As the Members of the Society are aware, the task was originally undertaken by Mr. W. Payne. Ill-health unfortunately prevented him from carrying the work to a completion, but to him the Society is indebted for the supervision of the reprint of the Edition of 1580, which he collated most carefully with the editions of 1557 and 1577, and to which he added several pieces from those editions, thus making the present reprint more complete than any yet published. Mr. Payne also compiled a very complete Index of Words, which has been of great assistance to me for purposes of reference, and in preparing[Pg vi] the Glossary. The notes also from Tusser Redivivus (marked T.R.) were for the most part extracted by Mr. Payne.

A reprint of the First Edition of 1557 was not included in the original programme, but after the work came into my hands an opportunity was presented through the kindness of Mr. F. J. Furnivall, who lent for the purpose his copy of the reprint of 1810, of exhibiting the work in its original form of "One hundreth Points" side by side with the extended edition of 1580, the last which had the benefit of the author's supervision. The proof-sheets have been collated with the unique copy in the British Museum by Miss Toulmin-Smith, to whom I return my thanks for her kindness, and the correctness of the reprint may consequently be relied on. From Mr. F. J. Furnivall I have received numerous hints, and much valuable help, while to Mr. J. Britten, F.L.S., I am indebted for his kindness in revising and supplementing the notes on the Plants named in Tusser. But my chief obligations are due to the Rev. W. W. Skeat, whose uniform kindness has considerably lightened my labours, and from whom both directly and indirectly (through the notes in his numerous publications), but more particularly in his noble edition of Piers Plowman, I have derived the greatest assistance.

S. J. H.

May 14th, 1878.

Transcriber's note: The original print edition has both page footnotes and an end section of 'Notes and Illustrations.' In this digital edition, the page footnotes are grouped at the end of each chapter and renumbered accordingly: [1], [2], etc. References to the endnotes are numbered [E1], [E2], etc. This html version also links words in the main text (dotted underline) to their reference points in the Glossary. The 'Erratum' on p. xxxii of the print edition has been silently corrected within the text, and the 'Additional Notes' on p. 317 are now incorporated within the preceding 'Notes and Illustrations.'

[Pg vii]


Biographical Sketch of the Authorxi
Tusser's willxxix
Fiue hundred pointes of good husbandrie1
A lesson how to confer euery abstract with his month, &c.2
A Table of the Pointes of Husbandrie3
1.Epistle to Lord W. Paget5
2.Epistle to Lord T. Paget7
3.To the Reader11
4.Introduction to the Booke of Husbandrie13
5.Preface to the Buier of this Booke14
6.The Commodities of Husbandrie15
7.A Riddle15
8.The Description of Husbandrie16
9.The Ladder to thrift17
10.Good husbandlie lessons18
11.An habitation inforced better late than neuer27
12.The fermers dailie diet27
13.Description of the properties of windes at all seasons29
14.Of the Planets30
15.Septembers Abstract31
16.Septembers husbandrie34
17.A digression to husbandlie furniture35
18.Octobers abstract43
19.Octobers husbandrie47
20.Nouembers abstract53
21.Nouembers husbandrie55
22.Decembers abstract59
23.Decembers husbandrie61[Pg viii]
24.A digression to hospitalitie65
25.Description of time and the yeare65
26.Description of life and riches66
27.Description of housekeeping67
28.Description of Christmas67
29.Description of apt time to spend68
30.Against fantasticall scruplenes69
31.Christmas husbandlie fare69
32.A Christmas Caroll70
33.Januaries abstract72
34.Of trees or fruites to be set or remooued76
35.Januaries husbandrie76
36.Februaries abstract85
37.Februaries husbandrie87
38.Marches abstract91
39.Seedes and herbes for the Kitchen93
40.Herbes and rootes for sallets and sauce94
41.Herbes and rootes to boile or to butter95
42.Strowing herbes of all sortes95
43.Herbes, branches, and flowers, for windowes and pots95
44.Herbes to still in Sommer96
45.Herbes for Physick, etc.97
46.Marches husbandrie97
47.Aprils abstract102
48.Aprils husbandrie103
49.A lesson for dairie maid Cisley107
50.Maies abstract109
51.Maies husbandrie111
52.Junes abstract116
53.Junes husbandrie117
54.Julies abstract121
55.Julies husbandrie122
56.Augusts abstract124
57.Augusts husbandrie128
58.Corne Haruest equally deuided into ten partes136
59.A briefe conclusion, each word beginning with the letter T137
60.Mans age deuided into twelue seauens138
61.Another diuision of mans age138
62.Comparison between good and bad husband139
63.Comparison betweene Champion countrie and seuerall140
64.Description of an enuious neighbour146[Pg ix]
64.*To light a candell before the Deuill148
65.A sonet against a slanderous tongue150
66.Sonet upon the Authors first seuen yeeres seruice151
67.Dialogue on wiuing and thriuing152
68.The Authors Epistle to the Ladie Paget159
69.The Authors Epistle to the Reader161
70.The Author's Preface to his booke of Huswiferie162
71.The praise of Huswiferie163
72.A description of Huswife and Huswiferie163
73.Instructions to Huswiferie163
74.A digression to cockcrowing165
75.Huswiferie morning workes167
76.Huswifelie breakefast workes168
77.Huswifelie admonitions or lessons168
85.Dinner time huswiferie174
86.Huswifelie afternoone workes175
87.Huswifelie euening workes177
88.Supper time huswiferie178
89.After Supper workes of huswiferie179
90.The ploughmans feasting daies180
91.The good huswifelie Physicke182
92.The good motherlie nurserie183
93.A precept of thinking on the poore183
94.A comparison betweene good huswiferie and euill184
95.The meanes for children to attaine to learning185
96.A description of womans age187
97.The Inholders posie187
98.Certain Table Lessons188
99.Lessons for waiting seruants189
100.Husbandly posies for the hall190
101.Posies for the parler190
102.Posies for the gests chamber191
103.Posies for thine owne bed chamber192
104.A Sonet to the Ladie Paget193[Pg x]
105.Principall points of Religion193
106.The Authors beleefe194
107.Of the omnipotencie of God and debilitie of man199
108.Of Almes deedes200
109.Of malus homo201
110.Of two sortes of people201
111.Of what force the deuill is if he be resisted201
112.Eight of Saint Barnards verses in Latine and English202
113.Of the Authors departing from the Court204
114.The Authors life of his own penning205
115.Of Fortune216
A hundreth good pointes of husbandrie219
Epistle to Lord Paget (1557)220
Concordia parvæ res crescunt221
Augusts husbandrie222
Septembers husbandrie223
Octobers husbandrie223
Nouembers husbandrie224
Decembers husbandrie225
On Christmas225
Januaries husbandrie226
Februarys husbandrie228
Marches husbandrie229
A digression to huswifrie229
Aprils husbandrie229
Mays husbandrie230
Junes husbandrie231
Julys husbandrie232
Notes and Illustrations235

[Pg xi]


Thomas Tusser, the Author of the "Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry," was born at Rivenhall,[1] near Kelvedon and Witham, in the County of Essex, about the year 1525. The exact date of his birth is uncertain, Warton[2] placing it in 1523, and Dr. Mavor in 1515, in which he is supported by the inscription on the mural tablet erected to the memory of Tusser in the church of Manningtree, where he is stated to have been sixty-five years of age at the time of his death, which took place in 1580.

Tusser, however, appears to have been elected to King's College, Cambridge, in 1543, and as he would have become ineligible at nineteen, his birth cannot have taken place earlier than 1523, and, most probably, did not take place before 1524 or 1525.

It appears from the pedigree recorded by his nephew, John Tusser, the son of his eldest brother Clement, at the Herald's Visitation of Essex in 1570, which is the only record we have[Pg xii] of the family, that "William Tusser, the father, had five sons, Clement, Andrew, John, Thomas, and William, and four daughters; the marriages of the daughters are set down, but no wives assigned to the sons, except to Clement, who married Ursula Petts, and had issue John (who entered the pedigree), Edward, and Jane, all three unmarried in 1570. The mother of Thomas was [Isabella], a daughter of Thomas Smith, of Rivenhall, in Essex, Esq., whose elder brother, Hugh, was ancestor of Smith, Lord Carrington (not the present lord), sister of Sir Clement Smith, who married a sister of the Protector Somerset, and first cousin of Sir John Smith, one of the Barons of the Exchequer in the reign of Edward the Sixth. This match with Smith I take to have been the chief foundation of gentility in the Tussers, for I can find no traces of them or their arms before this connexion."[3]

At a very early age, and notwithstanding his mother's tears and entreaties, he was placed by his father as a singing-boy in the Collegiate Chapel of the Castle of Wallingford, in Berkshire, which, according to Warton,[4] consisted of a dean, six prebendaries, six clerks, and four choristers, and was dissolved in 1549. He has himself recorded[5] in his homely and quaint style the hardships which he had to endure at this school, the bare robes, the college fare, the stale bread, and the penny ale. The excellence of his voice appears to have attracted the notice of some of those persons to whom at that time "placards" or commissions were[Pg xiii] issued, authorizing them to impress singing-boys for the King's Chapel.[6] Afterwards, by the good offices of some friend, he was admitted into the choir of St. Paul's Cathedral, where he acquired a considerable proficiency in music under the tuition of John Redford, the organist and almoner, of whom he speaks in terms of the highest praise. From St. Paul's he was sent to Eton, probably in 1540 or 1541, "to learn the Latin phrase," and was for some time a pupil of Nicholas Udall,[7] the author of "Roister Doister," who appears to have been a second Orbilius, and by whom he was unmercifully thrashed, receiving on one occasion, "for fault but small, or none at all," no fewer than fifty-three stripes.

From Eton he passed on to Cambridge, and, as already stated, was elected to King's College in 1543,[8] but afterwards removed to Trinity Hall, of which he appears to have retained pleasant memories. Being obliged by a long illness to discontinue his studies, he left the University, and joined the Court as a retainer of William, Lord Paget,[9] by whom he was probably employed as[Pg xiv] a musician, and of whom he speaks in terms of praise and affection. In this manner the next ten years were passed, and during this time his parents died. At the end of this period, either from disgust at the vices of the Court, or finding, to use his own words, "the Court began to frown," he retired into the country, married,[10] and settled down as a farmer at Cattiwade,[11] a hamlet in the parish of Brantham, in Suffolk, and on the borders of Essex, where he composed his "Hundredth Good Pointes of Husbandrie," the first edition of which appeared in 1557.

In consequence of his wife's ill-health, he removed to Ipswich, "a town of price, like Paradise." Here his wife died, and he married Amy, daughter of Edmond Moon, and settled down at West Dereham in Norfolk. On leaving this town, on account of the litigious character of his neighbours, he became, probably[Pg xv] through the influence of his patron, Sir Robert Southwell,[12] a lay-clerk or singing-man in the Cathedral at Norwich, the Dean of which, John Salisbury, appears to have befriended him in every way.

From Norwich a painful illness caused him to remove to Fairsted, about four miles from Witham, in Essex, the tithes of which parish he farmed; becoming involved in "tithing strife," he left that village, and once more returned to London, where we find him living in St. Giles's, Cripplegate, in 1572.[13] The plague, however, breaking out,[14] he returned to Cambridge, where he at last found "a resting plot" in his favourite College, Trinity Hall, in the choir of which he appears to have been employed, as he was matriculated as a servant of the College, probably on May 5th, 1573.[15]

His death, as appears from a paper read before the London and Middlesex Archæological Society, took place in London, on the 3rd May, 1580, in the fifty-fifth or fifty-sixth year of his age. His will,[16] which is dated 25th April of that year, was proved by his son on the 8th August following.

He was buried in the Church of St. Mildred, in the Poultry,[Pg xvi] where was formerly, according to Stow,[17] a monument to his memory, inscribed as follows:

"Here Thomas Tusser, clad in earth doth lie,
That sometime made the Poyntes of Husbandrie;
By him then learne thou maist, here learne we must,
When all is done we sleepe and turne to dust,
And yet through Christ to heaven we hope to go,
Who reades his bookes, shall find his faith was so."

This inscription is perfectly in character with the man, and was probably written by Tusser himself.

A mural tablet to his memory has been erected in Manningtree Church in Essex, with the following inscription: "Sacred to the memory of Thomas Tusser, Gent., born at Rivenhall, in Essex, and occupier of Braham Hall[18] near this town, in the reign of King Edward the Sixth, where he wrote his celebrated poetical treatise, entitled, Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry, etc. His writings show that he possessed a truly Christian spirit, and his excellent maxims and observations on rural affairs evince that he was far in advance of the age in which he lived. He died in London in 1580, at the age of 65, and was interred in the parish church of St. Mildred in the Poultry, where the following epitaph, said to have been written by himself, recorded his memory;" then follows a copy of the epitaph already given.

[Pg xvii]

The statement in this inscription that he wrote the "Five Hundred Points" at Braham Hall is incorrect; what he did write there was the "One Hundred Points of Good Husbandrie," afterwards enlarged to "Five Hundred Points."

It has been a very generally received opinion that Tusser died in great poverty. Fuller, in his "Worthies of Essex," p. 334, says, "Whether he bought or sold, he lost, and when a renter impoverished himself, and never enriched his landlord; he spread his bread with all sorts of butter; yet none could stick thereon." Warton also says:[19] "Without a tincture of careless imprudence, or vicious extravagance, this desultory character seems to have thrived in no vocation."

Again, in Peacham's "Minerva," a book of emblems printed in 1612, there is a device of a whetstone and a scythe, with these lines:—

"They tell me, Tusser, when thou wert alive,
And hadst for profit turned every stone,
Where'er thou camest, thou could'st never thrive,
Though hereto best thou could'st counsel every one,
As it may in thy Husbandry appear;
Wherein afresh thou liv'st among us here.
So like thy self, a number more are wont,
To sharpen others with advice of wit,
When they themselves are like the whetstone blunt."[20]

These statements, however, appear to be scarcely borne out by Tusser's will. By it we find that, at the time of his death,[Pg xviii] his brother William owed him £330, a large sum in those days, and, further, that he was the owner of two small copyhold and leasehold farms. Had he been so unfortunate in all his undertakings, and been, as Fuller terms him, "a stone which gathers no moss," Tusser would hardly have been able to lend his brother such a sum of money. If, however, it be true that he lived and died poor, we may, in all probability, attribute it to his love of hospitality, a prominent feature in his character, as well as to a roving and unsteady disposition.

Dr. Mavor states in the introduction to his edition of 1810, p. 11, that "it may be inferred from his [Tusser's] own words, that his happiness was not permanently promoted by this match [his second marriage]. He seems to complain of the charges incident 'to a wife in youth,' and had she transmitted her thoughts to posterity, we should probably have heard some insinuations against an old husband." I fail, however, to see sufficient grounds for this assertion: on the contrary, Tusser's words on the only occasion on which he speaks of his second wife seem to bear an opposite construction:—

"I chanced soon to find a Moon
of cheerful hue;
Which well a fine me thought did shine
And never change—(a thing most strange)
Yet kept in sight her course aright,
And compass true."——Chapt. 114, stanza 19.

It is true that in several passages he speaks of the increased expenses and responsibilities incident to a married life, but only, as it appears to me, with the view of deterring others from entering into that state without carefully considering beforehand the cost and probable consequences of such a step.

[Pg xix]

By his first wife Tusser had no children, but by the second, who survived him, he had three sons, Thomas, John and Edmond, and one daughter Mary.

His will, which is exceedingly characteristic, is given in full at the end of this introduction, from a copy in the British Museum,[21] privately printed in 1846 by Mr. Charles Clark, of Great Totham, Essex, from a transcript furnished to him by Mr. E. Ventris, of Cambridge, by whom the original was discovered in the Registry at Ely.[22] At the end of the will were printed Tusser's metrical Autobiography, and a few notices from nearly contemporary authors. Mr. Clark also printed in 1834 a few copies of the original edition of 1557 of the "Hundredth good Poyntes of Husbandrie."

Tusser was, as may be seen from his writings, a man of high religious principles, good-natured and cheerful, of a kindly and generous disposition, and hospitable to a fault. Although he constantly inculcates economy, he was entirely free from the meanness and pitiful spirit, which, according to Stillingfleet, made farmers of his time starve their cattle, their land and everything belonging to them; choosing rather to lose a pound than spend a shilling. "Mirth and good cheer," seems to have been his motto, and although he may have been imprudent in allowing his love of hospitality to be carried to such an excess as to keep him from independence, yet we cannot help loving the man, and admiring the justness of his sentiments on every subject connected with life and morals. Strict as he appears to have been in all matters connected with religion, he[Pg xx] was far from being what he terms "fantastically scrupulous," or, as we should now say, of a puritanical disposition. He prefers a merry fellow to a grave designing villain:—

"Play thou the good fellow! seeke none to misdeeme;
Disdaine not the honest, though merie they seeme;
For oftentimes seene, no more verie a knave,
Than he that doth counterfeit most to be grave."[23]

How strongly, too, does he support the keeping up of the old "feasting-daies," "Olde customes that good be let no man dispise," the festivities of Christmas,[24] the Harvest Home, etc. His maxims on the treatment of servants and dependents are conceived in a truly Christian spirit, as when he says:—

"Once ended thy harvest, let none be beguil'd,
Please such as did help thee—man, woman, and child;
Thus doing with alway such help as they can,
Thou winnest the praise of the labouring man."
"Good servants hope justly some friendship to feel,
And look to have favour, what time they do well."

And again, such as these—

"Be lowly, not sullen, if aught go amiss,
What wresting may lose thee, that win with a kiss."
"Remember the poor that for God's sake do call,
For God both rewardeth and blesseth withall.
Take this in good part, whatsoever thou be,
And wish me no worse than I wish unto thee."

The versification of Tusser does not call for any lengthened remarks. The greater portion of his work is written in the same anapæstic metre, which, though rough, is well adapted[Pg xxi] for retention in the memory. There are, however, two exceptions worthy of special notice: firstly, the "Preface to the Buier" (ch. 5) and the "Comparison between Champion Countrie and Severall" (ch. 63), which are the first examples of a metre afterwards adopted by Prior and Shenstone, and generally believed to have originated with the latter: secondly, the "Author's linked verses" (ch. 113), a species of what Dr. Guest calls Inverse Rhime in the following passage from his "History of English Rhythms":[25] "Inverse Rhime is that which exists between the last accented syllable of the first section, and the first accented syllable of the second. It appears to have flourished most in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. I do not remember any instance of it in Anglo-Saxon, but it is probably of native growth.[26] A kindred dialect, the Icelandic, had, at an early period, a species of rhime closely resembling the present—the second verse always beginning with the last accented syllable of the first. It is singular that the French had in the sixteenth century a rhime like the Icelandic, called by them la rime entrelassée. The present rhime differed from it, as it was contained in one verse.... Thus:—

'These steps| both reach|| and teach| thou shalt|
To come| by thrift|| to shift| withal|.'——Tusser.
'The pi|pers loud|| and loud|er blew|,
The dan|cers quick|| and quick|er flew|.'——Burns."

The following are Tusser's principal peculiarities:—

1. The use of a plural noun with a verb singular. This very frequently occurs. "Some," too, is almost invariably treated thus.

[Pg xxii]

2. His omissions and elliptical phrases, such as [while] plough-cattle [are] a-baiting (85/2); thy market [having been] despatched, 57/45; a small [income] 62/11; in the mottoes of the months, [work] forgotten [in the] month past; and in such expressions as "fault known" 47/22, "that done" 55/2, "who living" 26/1, etc.

3. Peculiarities of rime. Tusser appears to have attributed far more importance to the outward appearance of his riming words, than to the reality of the rimes. So long as they appeared to rime, it seems to have mattered little that in pronunciation they were widely different. We thus find them constantly (a) changing the spelling of words in order to make them look like others; and again (b) using as rimes words which, though similarly spelt, are totally unlike in pronunciation. The following examples will suffice. In alterations of orthography we find weight (for wait) to rime with eight; raies (for raise); mutch to rime with hutch; thease to rime with ease; ise (for ice) to rime with device; flo (for flow) to rime with fro; feere (for fire or fier) to rime with Janiveere; tought (for taught) to rime with thought; cace (for case) to rime with place; waight (for wait) to rime with straight; bilde, to rime with childe; thoes (for those) to rime with sloes, etc.

On the other hand, we find such rimes as the following: plough, rough; shew, few; have, save; have, crave; feat, great; overthwart, part; shal, fal; and a very curious instance in Chapter 69, stanza 1, where thrive is made to rime with atchive.

If the number of editions through which an author's works pass be a proof of merit, as it certainly is of popularity, few[Pg xxiii] writers of his time can enter into competition with Tusser. During the forty years from the appearance of the first edition of the "One Hundreth Poyntes" in 1557 to the end of the sixteenth century, no fewer than thirteen editions of his work are known to have been published. Yet all are scarce, and few of those surviving are perfect; a proof that what was intended for practical use had been sedulously applied to that purpose. "Some books," says Mr. Haslewood, in the "British Bibliographer," No. iii., "become heir-looms from value; and Tusser's work, for useful information in every department of agriculture, together with its quaint and amusing observations, perhaps passed the copies from father to son, till they crumbled away in the bare shifting of the pages, and the mouldering relic only lost its value by the casual mutilation of time." Subjoined is a list of all the various recorded editions, extracted from Mavor's introduction and other sources.

1557. A Hundreth Good Pointes of Husbandrie. Reprinted here from the unique copy in the British Museum.

1561. Thomas Hacher had licence for a "dyalogue of wyuynge and thryuynge of Tusshers, with ij lessons for olde and yonge." Ritson, though improperly, considers this as a different work from the piece which appears under the same title in later editions.[27]

1562. It appears probable that this edition, though its existence is disputed by some, contained the original germ of the Book of Huswifery, as we find, on the authority of Warton, that in the preceding year Richard Totell had licence to print "a booke entituled one hundreth good[Pg xxiv] poyntes of housbondry lately maryed unto a hundreth poyntes of huswiffry, newly corrected and amplyfyed."[28]

1564. The existence of an edition of this date rests on the authority of Otridge's Catalogue, 1794. It is probably a misprint for 1562.

1570. A hundreth good pointes of husbandry, lately maried unto a hundreth good poynts of huswifery: newly corrected and amplified, with dyuers proper lessons for householders, as by the table at the latter ende more plainly may appeare. Set foorth by Thomas Tusser, gentleman, servant to the right honorable lorde Paget of Beudesert. In ædibus Richardii Tottyli, cum privilegio, Anno 1570.

1573. Five hundreth pointes of good husbandry united to as many of good huswifery, first devised and more lately augmented, with divers approved lessons, concerning hopps and gardening and other needful matters, together with an abstract before every moneth, containing the whole effect of the sayd moneth, with a table and a preface in the beginning, both necessary to be reade, for the better understanding of the booke. Set forth by Thomas Tusser, gentleman, servant to the honorable lorde Paget of Beudesert. Imprinted at London in Flete Strete within Temple Barre, at the signe of the hand and starre, by Richard Tottell. Anno 1573. Cum privilegio.[29]

1577. A reprint of the above, by the same person [but with some alterations, W.P.].

1580. The edition here reprinted, 4to.

1585. Five hundred pointes, etc. Newly set foorth by Thomas Tusser, gentleman. At London, printed in the now dwelling house of Henrie Denham, in Aldersgate Street, at the signe of the Starre.[30]

[Pg xxv]

1586. By Denham, as before. 4to., pp. 164.

1590. By the assignees of Serres.[31]

1593. By Yardley. 4to. (in the Bodleian Library, M.)

1597. By Peter Short. 4to.

1599. Again by Peter Short.[32] Also by Waldegrave in Scotland. 4to.

1604. Printed for the Companie of Stationers. Five hundreth points of good husbandrie: as well for the Champion or open countrie, as also for the Woodland or Severall, mixed in every Month with Huswiferie, over and besides the booke of Huswiferie. Corrected, better ordered and newly augmented to a fourth part more, with divers other lessons, as a diet for the farmer, of the properties of winds, plants, hops, herbs, bees, and approved remedies for sheepe and cattell, with manie other matters both profitable and not unpleasant for the Reader. Also two tables, one of husbandrie, and the other of Huswiferie, at the end of the booke; for the better and easier finding of any matter contained in the same. Newlie set foorth by Thomas Tusser, gentleman, etc. (Public Library, Cambridge, M.).

1610. Printed for the Company of Stationers. 4to.[33]

1614. id. id. 4to.

1620. id. id. The orthography in the title in some respects more obsolete than in earlier impressions: thus we have moneth for month, and hearbs for herbs. 4to. In British Museum.

1638. For the Company of Stationers. 4to.[34]

1672. Printed for T. R. and M. D. for the Company of Stationers. 146 pp., exclusive of the tables, closely printed.[35]

1692. Bibliotheca Farmeriana, No. 7349. Haslewood.

[Pg xxvi]

All the foregoing editions are in small 4to. black-letter [with roman and italic headlines and occasional verses, W.P.].

1710. Tusser Redivivus. The Calendar of the twelve months with notes, published in as many numbers, by Daniel Hilman, a Surveyor of Epsom in Surry. 8vo. Lond. pp. 150.

1744. The same with a new title-page only. Printed for M. Cooper, in Paternoster Row; and sold by J. Duncan, in Berkley Square, near Grosvenor Gate. The title runs thus: Five Hundred points of Husbandry: directing what grass, corn, etc., is proper to be sown; what trees to be planted; how land is to be improved; with whatever is fit to be done for the benefit of the Farmer, in every month of the Year. By Thomas Tusser, Esq. To which are added notes and observations, explaining many obsolete Terms used therein, and what is agreeable to the present practice in several counties of this kingdom. A work very necessary and useful for gentlemen, as well as occupiers of land, whether wood-ground or tillage and pasture.

1810. A very correct reprint of the First Edition of 1557 was issued by R. Triphook and William Sancho.

1812. Five Hundred Points of good Husbandry, as well for the champion or open country, as for the woodland or several; together with a Book of Huswifery. Being a Calendar of rural and domestic Economy, for every month in the year; and exhibiting a Picture of the Agriculture, Customs, and Manners of England, in the Sixteenth Century. By Thomas Tusser, Gentleman. A New Edition, with notes, Georgical, Illustrative and Explanatory, a Glossary, and other Improvements. By William Mavor, LL.D.,[36] Honorary Member of the Board of Agriculture, etc.

"Multa renascentur, quæ jam cecidêre, cadentque,
Quæ nunc sunt in honore."—Hor.

London, printed for Lackington, Allen & Co., Temple of the Muses, Finsbury-Square, 8vo. 1812. Dedicated to the President and Members of the Board of Agriculture, pp. 36, xl., and 338.

[Pg xxvii]

1834. Mr. Charles Clark of Great Totham, Essex, printed at his private press a few copies of the original edition of 1557.

1848. A Selection was published at Oxford with the following title: Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry, by Thomas Tusser. Now newly corrected and edited and heartily commended to all true lovers of country life and honest thrift. By H. M. W. Oxford, 1848, 16mo.

The work is also included in Southey's Select Works of the British Poets, 143-199.

Extracts from the Registers of the Stationers' Company.

1557. John Daye had licence to print "the Hundreth poyntes of good 'Husserie.'" Regist. Station. A. fo. 23a.

1559-60. June 20. T. Marshe had licence "to print the boke of Husbandry." Ibid. fo. 486. This last title occurs in these registers much lower.

1561. Richard Tottell was to print "A boke intituled one hundreth good poyntes of husboundry lately maryed unto a hundreth good poyntes of Huswiffry newly corrected and amplyfyed." Ibid. fo. 74a.

1565. A licence to Alde to print "An hundreth poyntes of evell huswyfraye," probably a satire or parody on Tusser. Ibid. fo. 131.

[1] The name of Tusser does not appear in the parochial registers at Rivenhall, which only extend back to 1634. According to Dr. Mavor, the name and race have long been extinct.

[2] History of English Poetry, 1840, vol. iii. p. 248.

[3] Letter from J. Townsend, Esq., Windsor Herald, to Dr. Mavor, quoted in his edition of Tusser, p. 7.

[4] History of English Poetry, 1840, vol. iii. p. 248.

[5] See chapter 114, stanza 5.

[6] Dr. Rimbault, in his Cheque Book of the Chapel Royal, quotes the following from Liber Niger Domini Regis (temp. Edward VI.): "The children of the Chappelle were 8 in number, with a Master of Songe to teach them. And when any of the children comene to be xviij yeares of age, and their voices change, ne cannot be preferred in this Chappelle, the nombere being full, then, yf they will assente, the kyng assynethe them to a College of Oxford or Cambridge of his fundatione, there to be at fynding and studye both suffycyently, tylle the king may otherwise advanse them."—Query, was Tusser assigned in this way to King's College, Cambridge?

[7] Nicholas Udall took his degree of M.A. at Oxford in 1534.

[8] Hatcher, MSS. Catalog. Præpos. Soc. Schol. Coll. Regal. Cant.

[9] Of this nobleman, the ancestor of the Earl of Uxbridge, a very full account is given in Dugdale, from which it appears that he was born at Wednesbury in Staffordshire, his father being one of the Serjeants-at-Mace of the city of London. Under Henry VIII. he was Ambassador to France, and Master of the Post. In 1549 he obtained a grant of the fee of the house without Temple Bar, first called Paget House, then Leicester House, and lastly Essex House. Two years afterwards he was Ambassador to the Emperor Charles V., and in the same year was called by writ to Parliament by the title of Lord Paget of Beaudesert, Com. Salop., and soon after sent to treat for peace with France. On the fall of the Duke of Somerset, he was charged with designing the murder of several noblemen at Paget House, and in consequence was sent to the Tower, deprived of his honours and offices, and fined £6000, one-third of which was remitted. On the death of Edward VI. he joined the Earl of Arundel, the chief champion of Queen Mary, and gained her favour by his activity. Soon after her marriage with Philip, he was sent Ambassador to the Emperor at Brussels, to consult Cardinal Pole respecting the restoration of Popery. In this reign he was made Lord Privy Seal. Lord Paget died very aged, in 1563, and was buried at Drayton in Middlesex. He left issue by Anne, daughter of —— Prestin, Esq., Com. Lanc., three sons and five daughters. His eldest son Henry succeeded him in the title; but dying in 1568, the peerage descended to his next brother, Thomas, whom Tusser claims also for a patron. Thomas being zealously affected to Popery, and implicated in the plots in favour of Mary Queen of Scots, fled and was attainted 1587, and died three years after at Brussels, leaving one son, Thomas, who succeeded him.

[10] Of the name and family of his first wife we are entirely ignorant.

[11] In later editions printed Ratwade, and transferred to Sussex, a mistake into which Warton has fallen.

[12] Tusser is generally supposed to have addressed Sir Richard Southwell as "Thou worthy wight, thou famous knight," but it is clear that Sir Robert Southwell is intended, for in 1573 Tusser alludes to Southwell's death as having occurred some years before, but Sir Richard Southwell did not die till 1579, while Sir Robert died twenty years previously.—Cooper, Ath. Cant.

[13] His second son, Edmond, was baptized at St. Giles's, Cripplegate, 13th March, 1572-3.

[14] The plague to which Tusser evidently alludes (in stanza 31 of Autobiography), according to Maitland, raged in London in 1573 and 1574.

[15] Cooper, Ath. Cantab. vol. i. p. 422.

[16] See p. xxix.

[17] Survey of London, ed. 1618, p. 474. The church of St. Mildred was destroyed in the Great Fire.

[18] Braham Hall was in 1460 the residence of Sir John Braham, and is about a mile and a half from Manningtree, and in the parish of Brantham, where Tusser first introduced the culture of barley;

"In Brantham where rye but no barley did grow,
Good barley I had, as a many did know.
Five seam of an acre, I truly was paid,
For thirty load muck of each acre so laid."
—Chapt. 19, st. 9.

The field where barley first grew at Brantham is still pointed out by tradition.

[19] Hist. of Eng. Poetry, vol. iii. p. 249.

[20] Thus altered in "Recreations for ingenious Head Pieces; or a pleasant Grove for their Wits to walk in, etc.," 8vo. 1644:—

"Tusser, they tell me, when thou wert alive
Thou, teaching thrift, thyself could'st never thrive:
So, like the whetstone, many men are wont,
To sharpen others, when themselves are blunt."

[21] Shelf-mark, 10817, g.

[22] Notes and Queries, 1st Ser. vol. xii. p. 193.

[23] Chapter 30, stanza 3.

[24] "What season then better of all the whole yeere
Thy needie poor neighbour to comfort and cheere?"

[25] Vol. i. pp. 136, 7.

[26] A very curious example is printed from Harl. MS. 913 in "Early English Poems," ed. Furnivall, pp. 21, 2.

[27] This was probably a broadside edition of the Dialogue found in the Book of Husbandry.

[28] No copy of this date is known to be extant, though it is mentioned both in Weston's and King's Catalogues.

[29] This is the first edition of "Five Hundred Points."

[30] Differing very little from the preceding. It is probable that Tusser might have left, before his death, some corrections on the ed. of 1580, which were introduced into this. After this edition, errors seem to have multiplied in every successive issue.

[31] In White's Catalogue, 1788; Mr. Ashby saw a copy in possession of Dr. Lort.

[32] Extremely incorrect. Reprinted in "Somers' Tracts" by Sir W. Scott, vol. iii. p. 403.

[33] An edition little known, but certainly existing.

[34] Payne's Catalogue, 1773; Deck's, 1792, little known.

[35] In this edition some errors are corrected, and the orthography is considerably modernized.

[36] Rector of Woodstock.

[Pg xxix]


In the name of God, Amen, the xxv of Aprill 1580. I, Thomas Tusser, of Chesterton, in the Countye of Cambridge, Gentleman, being feeble in bodye, but perfecte in memorie, thanks be to God, doe make and ordaine this my Last Will and Testament in manner and forme following, revokinge all other Wills heretofore made. That is to say, Ffirst and principallye I give and betake my sowle to Allmightie God the Father (my maker) and to his son Jesus Christ (my onelye Redeemer) by whose merites I most firmelye beleve and trust to be saved and to be partaker of lyef everlastinge, and to the Holye Gost (my Comforter) Three personnes in one ever Godheade, whome I doe most humblye thanke that he hathe mercifullye kepte me untill this tyme, and that he hathe given me tyme and space to confesse and bewaile my sinnes, and that he hathe forgiven me them all, thorough the merites of our Savioure Jesus Christ, which I doe undoubtedlye beleve, because he hathe mercifullye promised yt, to whome be praise for ever and ever, Amen.

Item. I give and bequeathe unto Thomas Tusser, my eldest Sonne, to be delivered unto to him within one yere next after my decease Fyftye Pounds of goode and lawful monye of England, parcell of the Three Hundrethe and Thirtie Pownds which William Tusser my Brother dothe owe unto me uppon one recognisaunce wherein he standethe bounde unto me for the true paiment thereof; and my will is, That suche trustye Frend or Frends, as shall be hereafter in this my last Will and Testament named, shall have the use of the said Fiftie Pounds for and duringe the nonage of my said Sonne Thomas, and untill suche time as he shall accomplishe and come to the Age of xx and One Yeres, putting in sufficient suerties for the true paiment thereof unto the said Thomas my Sonne, and alsoe to paye for and towards the bringinge up of my said Sonne Thomas, yerelye, the summe of Fyve Pownds untill he shall accomplish and come to the Age of Twentye and One Yeres; and when my said Sonne Thomas shall accomplishe his said Age of Twentye and One Yeres, I will that the said summe of Fyftye Pownds shalbe, within one monethe next ensueing after the said accomplishment of Twentye and One Yeres unto him well and trulye contented and paid at one whole and entire paiment, &c. &c. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I give unto John Tusser my second Sonne other Fyftie Pownds of lawfull monye of England due unto me by the foresaid recognisance, and to be bestowed and employed to his use duringe his minoritie, and likewise to be paid unto him in suche and as lardge manner and forme to all constructions and purposes as is before declared of the other Fyftie Pownds before devised unto my Sonne Thomas Tusser; and also Fyve Pownds to be paid yerely during his minoritie in manner and forme before rehersed. Thomas Tusser. [Pg xxx]

Item. I give and bequeathe unto Edmond Tusser, my Sonne, and to Marye Tusser, my daughter, and unto either of them the Summe of Fyftye Pownds, due to me by force of the foresaid recognisaunce, and to be bestowed and employed to the seuerall uses and benefitts of them and either of them duringe their minorities, and likewise to be paid to either of them in suche and as lardge manner and forme in everie respect, to all constructions and purposes, as is before declared of the Fyftye Pownds devised before to my Sonne Thomas Tusser; and also Fyve Pownds a peece yerelye duringe their minorities, in manner and forme before rehersed. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I give and bequeathe unto Amy Tusser, my Wyef, the summe of Foure score Pownds of lawful monye of England dewe to me by force of the said recognisaunce, and to be paid unto her within one whole yere next ensewinge after my decease. Thomas Tusser.

Item. My will and intent is, That yf my brother William Tusser doe accordinge unto the intent and true meaninge of this my last Will and Testament well and truelye pay the foresaid severall summes of monye before given and bequeathed, unto Amye, my Wyef, to Thomas my Sonne, and to the rest of my children before named, and alsoe doe from tyme to tyme and at all times hereafter save and kepe harmles my Heires, Executors, and Administrators, and everie of them, of and from all trobles, chardges, and excumbrances, which maye at anye time hereafter come, rise, or growe for or by reason of any manner of Bonds wherein I stande bounde for or with him as suertie, That then I give and bequeathe unto him the summe of Fyftie Pownds being the residue of the said Summe due unto me by the force of the said recognisance before rehersed; and yf he doe not well and trulye performe the same, then I give the said Fiftie Pownds unto my Executors of this my last Will and Testament. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I will that yf anye of my children dye before they come to and accomplishe theire foresaid severall Ages of xxi Yeres that then I will that his or theire parts or portions shalbe destributed and equallye divided to and amongst the rest of my other children then survyveinge. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I give and bequeathe unto the afore-named Thomas Tusser, my Sonne, and his Heires, all those seven Acres and a Roode of Copy holde, which I nowe have lyinge in the Parish or Feilds of Chesterton; to have and to holde the same, after the deathe of Amye, my Wyef, to him his Heires and Assignes for ever.

Thomas Tusser.

Item. I give also to the said Thomas Tusser, my Sonne, all suche Estate and Tearme of Yeares as I have yet to come in a certain Close called Lawyer's Close, lyinge and beinge in the Parish of Chesterton, which said Close I have demised unto one William Mosse for the tearme of one whole Yere begininge at the Feast of St. Gregorye last past, yeldinge and payeinge for the same xxxvs. Rente, which said Rente I doe also gyve to my said Sonne Thomas towards his bringinge up in learninge. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I give also to the said Thomas my Bookes of Musicke and Virginalls. Thomas Tusser.

Item. The residue of all my Bonds, Goods and Chattells, moveable and immovable in Chesterton aforesaid or ellswhere, beinge in this my last Will and Testament unbequeathed, I give to Amye, my Wyef, dischardging all my debts and Funerall Expenses, not amountinge unto above the summe of Twentye[Pg xxxi] Marckes. And of this my last Will and Testament I constitute my said Sonne Thomas Tusser my full and whole Executor; and yf he happen to dye before he accomplishe his full Age of Twentye and One Yeres, then I doe constitute and make John Tusser, my second Sonne, my Executor. And yf yt fortune the said John to dye before he accomplish the Age of xxi Yeares, I constitute and make Edmond Tusser, my Sonne, my whole Executor; and yf yt happen the said Edmond do dye before he dothe accomplish and come to the Age of xxi Yeres, I do then make and constitute Amye Tusser, my Wyef, my full and whole Executor of this my last Will and Testament. Thomas Tusser.

Item. I doe constitute ordaine and make one Edmond Moon, Gentleman, Father to the said Amye, my Wyef, and Grandfather to my forenamed Children, my said trustie Frend before mentioned in this my said last Will and Testament, Guardian and Tutor unto my forenamed Children and Supervisor and Overseer of this my last Will and Testament, unto whome I doe next under God comitte bothe my Wyef and my forenamed Children trustinge assuredlye that he will take a fatherlye care over them as fleshe of his fleshe and bone of his bones.

Thomas Tusser.

Those whose names be hereunder written beinge Witnesses to this present last Will and Testament.

John Plommer Of Barnard's Inne, in the Countye of Middlesex, Gentleman.

Richard Clue.

Thomas Jeve.

James Blower.

Wiliam Hygeart.

Mem. That William Hygeart dwellethe in Southwerke, with Mr. Towlye, Copper Smith; Richard Clue in St. Nicholas Lane, free of the Merchant Taylers; Thomas Jeve, Ironmonger; James Blower, Servant, free of Clotheworkers.

Sealed and delivered in the presence of the parties above named.

John Bootes.

Francis Shackelton, the Parson of St. Myldred's in the Poultrie,

John Plommer.

Proved in the Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the 8th day of August 1580, by his Son, Thomas Tusser.

[Pg 1]

Fiue hundred pointes of
good Husbandrie, as well for
the Champion, or open countrie,
as also for the woodland, or Seuerall,
mixed in euerie Month with Huswiferie,
ouer and besides the booke of Huswiferie,
corrected, better ordered, and newly augmented
to a fourth part more, with diuers other lessons,
as a diet for the fermer, of the properties of
winds, planets, hops, herbes, bees, and approoued
remedies for sheepe & cattle, with many other
matters both profitable, and not vnpleasant for
the Reader. Also a table of husbandrie at the
beginning of this booke: and another
of huswiferie at the end: for the
better and easier finding of
any matter conteined
in the same.

Newly set foorth by Thomas Tusser
Gentleman, servant to the honorable
Lorde Paget of

Imprinted at London, by Henrie
Denham, dwelling in Paternoster
Row, at the signe
of the Starre.


[Pg 2]

A Lesson.

A lesson how to confer euery abstract with his month,& how to finde out huswiferie verses by the Pilcrowe, and Champion from Woodland.

In euerie month, er[1] in aught be begun,[E1]
Reade ouer that month, what auailes to be dun.
So neither this trauell[2] shall seeme to be lost:
Nor thou to repent of this trifeling cost.
The figure of abstract and month doo agree,
Which one to another relations bee.[E2]
These verses so short, without figure that stand,[3]
Be points of themselues, to be taken in hand.
In husbandrie matters, where Pilcrowe[E3] ye finde,
That verse appertaineth to huswiferie kinde.
So haue ye mo lessons, (if there ye looke well),
Than huswiferie booke doth vtter or tell.
Of Champion husbandrie now doo I write,
Which heretofore neuer this booke did recite.
With lessons approoued, by practise and skill:
To profit the ignorant, buie it that will.
The Champion differs from Seuerall much,
For want of partition, closier and such.
One name to them both doo I giue now & than,
For Champion countrie, and Champion man.

[1] yer. 1585.

[2] travail. 1577.

[3] The lessons that after those figures so stand. 1577.

[4] The edition of 1577 contains only the first two verses.

[Pg 3]

The Table of Husbandrie.

A Table of the pointes of husbandrie mentioned in this booke.

* * * Roman words in [ ] are wanting in 1577 edition; italics in [ ] are additions in the edition of 1577, in which y is substituted for ie, and accented é is unused.

The Epistle to the Lord William Paget deceased, and the occasion first of this booke.

The Epistle to the Lord Thomas Paget, second sonne, and now heire to the Lord William Paget his father.

[The Epistel] To the Reader.

[An Introduction to the booke of husbandrie.]

[A Preface to the buier of this booke. The preface.]

The commoditie[s] of husbandrie.

The praise of husbandrie [by a redele].

The description of [husband &] husbandrie.

The ladder [of xxxiiij steps] to thrift.

Good husbandlie lessons worthie to be followed of such as will thriue.

An habitation inforced, [aduisedly] better late than neuer; [made] upon these wordes, Sit downe Robin and rest thée.

[The farmers dailie diet.

A description of the properties of winds all ye times of the yere.

Of the Planets.]

Septembers abstract.

[Other short remembrances for September.]

Septembers husbandrie [with the nedeful furnyture of ye barne stable, plough, cart, yard, & field, togither with the manner of gathering hops, drying & keping them].

[A digression to husbandlie furniture.

The residue of Septembers husbandrie, agréeing with his former abstract.]

Octobers abstract.

[Other short remembrances for October.]

Octobers husbandrie.

[A digression to the vsage of diuers countries concerning tillage.

The residue of Octobers husbandrie, agréeing with his former abstract.]

Nouembers abstract.

[Other short remembrances for Nouember.]

Nouembers husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract].

Decembers abstract.

[Other short remembrances for December.]

Decembers husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract].

A digression [directing] to hospitalitie.

A description of time, and the yere.

A description of life & riches.

A description of houskéeping.

A description of [the feast of the birth of Christ, commonlie called] Christmas.

A description of apt time to spend.

Against fantastical scruplenes.

Christmas husbandlie fare.

A Christmas caroll [of the birth of Christ, vpon the tune of king Salomon].

Ianuaries abstract [and at the end thereof diuers sorts of trees and frutes to bee then set or remoued, following the order of ye alphabet or crosserowe].[E4]

[Other short remembrances for Ianuarie.

Of trées or fruites to be set or remooued.]

Ianuaries husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract].

Februaries abstract.

[Other short remembrances for Februarie.]

Februaries husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract].

Marches abstract [and at the ende therof, the names of the seedes, herbes, flowers & rootes than to be sowen or set, unles the time be otherwise noted by expresse wordes, as wel for kitchin herbes, strowing herbes & flowers, as herbes to stil & for phisick, set after the order of the alphabet or crosserowe].

[Other short remembrances for March.

[Pg 4]

Seedes and hearbes for the kitchen.

Herbes and rootes for sallets and sauce.

Herbs or rootes to boile or to butter.

Strowing herbs of all sorts.

Herbes, branches and flowers for windowes and pots.

Herbs to still in Summer.

Necessarie herbes to growe in the garden for Physicke not rehersed before.]

Marches husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract with the maner of setting of hops].

Aprils abstract.

Aprils husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract with a lesson for dairy maide Cisseley and of x toppings gests in hir whitmeat, better lost then found.]

[A digression to dairie matters.

A lesson for dairie maid Cisley of ten toppings gests.]

Maies abstract.

[Two other short remembrances for Maie.]

Maies husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract].

Junes abstract.

[A lesson of hopyard.]

Junes husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract, with a lesson to chuse a meete plot for hopps and howe then to be doing with the same.]

[A lesson where and when to plant good hopyard.]

Julies abstract.

Julies husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract and hay harvest].

Augusts abstract.

[Workes after haruest.]

Augusts husbandrie [agréeing with his former abstract & corne haruest].

[Corne haruest equally diuided into ten partes.]

[The conclusion of the whole booke set out in 12 verses euery word beginning with a T ye first letter of the Authors name.]

[A briefe conclusion in verse, euerie word beginning with a T.]

Mans age [divided into xij prentiships, from seuen yeares to fourescore and foure].

[A briefe description of thenclinations of mans age by the similitude of the Ape, Lion, Foxe, & the Asse.]

[Another diuision of the nature of mans age.]

A comparison betwéene good husband[rie] and [bad euill].

A comparison betwéene [woodland & Champion] countrie and Seuerall.

[The description of an enuious and naughtie neighbour.]

[A Sonet howe to set a candle afore the Deuill.]

A Sonet against a slaunderous tongue.

A Sonet [to his Lord & Master of his first vij yeres seruice vpon the Authors first seuen yeres seruice].

[The Authors A] dialogue betweene two Bachelers [batchillers], of wiuing & thriuing, by affirmation & negation [& the maryed mans iudgment thereof].

[The wedded mans iudgement taking vp the matter of wiuing and thriuing.

How ewes should be vsed that are néere lambing.

How lambes should be vsed when they are yoong.

What times are most méete for rearing of calues.

How to cure the wrigling of ye taile in a shéepe or a lambe.

Of gelding horsecolts.

A waie how to haue large bréede of hogs.

A medicine for faint cattle.

Howe to fasten loose téeth in a bullocke.

How to preuent the breeding of the bots in horses.

A medicine for the cowlaske.[E5]

Of burieng dead cattle.

A waie how to preserue bées.

What is to be done with measeled hogs.

What times are most méete for letting of horses blood.]

The Table of Huswiferie you shall finde at the ende of the booke.


* * * Tusser's references to pages are omitted.

[Pg 5]


The Author's Epistle to the late Lord William Paget, wherein he doth discourse of his owne bringing vp, and of the goodnes of the said Lord his master vnto him, and the occasion of this his booke, thus set forth of his owne long practise.

Chap. 1.

T   Time trieth the troth,[E7] in euerie thing,
H   Herewith let men content their minde,[1]
O   Of works, which best may profit bring,
M   Most rash to iudge, most often blinde.
A   As therefore troth in time shall craue,
S   So let this booke iust fauor haue.
T   Take you my Lord and Master than,
U   Vnlesse mischance mischanceth me,[E8]
S   Such homelie gift, of me your man,
S   Since more in Court I may not be,
A   And let your praise, wonne heretofore,
R   Remaine abrode for euermore.[E9]
M   My seruing you, (thus vnderstand,)
A   And God his helpe, and yours withall,[E10]
D   Did cause good lucke to take mine hand,
E   Erecting one most like to fall.
M   My seruing you, I know it was,

E   Enforced this to come to pas.
[Pg 6]
Since being once at Cambridge taught,
Of Court ten yeeres I made assaie,
No Musicke then was left vnsaught,
Such care I had to serue that waie.
When ioie gan slake, then made I change,
Expulsed[2] mirth, for Musicke strange.
My Musicke since hath bene the plough,
Entangled with some care among,
The gaine not great, the paine ynough,
Hath made me sing another song.
Which song, if well I may auow,
I craue it iudged be by yow.

Your seruant Thomas Tusser.

[1] How euery man doth please his mind. 1577.

[2] Expelled. 1585.

[Pg 7]


To the Right Honorable and my speciall good Lord and Master, the Lord Thomas Paget of Beaudesert, sone and heire to his late[1] father deceased.

Chap. 2.

My Lord, your father looued me,
and you my Lord haue prooued me,
and both your loues haue mooued me,
to write as here is donne:
Since God hath hence your father,
such flowers as I gather,
I dedicate now rather,
to you my Lord his sonne.
Your father was my founder,
till death became his wounder,
no subiect euer sounder,
whome Prince aduancement gaue:
As God did here defend him,
and honour here did send him,
so will I here commend him,
as long as life I haue.
His neighbours then did blisse him,
his seruants now doe misse him,
the poore would gladlie kisse him,
aliue againe to be:
But God hath wrought his pleasure,
and blest him, out of measure,
with heauen and earthlie treasure,
so good a God is he.
[Pg 8]
Ceres the Goddesse of husbandrie.
His counsell had I vsed,
and Ceres art refused,
I neede not thus haue mused,
nor droope as now I do:
But I must plaie the farmer,
and yet no whit the warmer,
although I had his armer,
and other comfort to.
Æsops fable.
The Foxe doth make me minde him,
whose glorie so did blinde him,
till taile cut off behinde him,
no fare could him content:
Euen so must I be proouing,
such glorie I had in loouing,
of things to plough behoouing,
that makes me now repent.
Loiterers I kept so meanie,
both Philip, Hob, and Cheanie,
that, that waie nothing geanie,
was thought to make me thriue:
Like Iugurth, Prince of Numid,[E11]
my gold awaie consumid,
with losses so perfumid,[E12]
was neuer none aliue.
Great fines so neere did pare me,
great rent so much did skare me,
great charge so long did dare me,
that made me at length crie creake:[E13]
Much more[2] of all such fleeces,[E14]
as oft I lost by peeces,
among such wilie geeces
I list no longer speake.
[Pg 9]
Though countrie health long staid me,
yet lesse[3] expiring fraid me,
and (ictus sapit[E15]) praid me
to seeke more steadie staie:
New lessons then I noted,
and some of them I coted,[4]
least some should think I doted,
by bringing naught awaie.
Pallas, Goddesse of wisdome and cunning.
Though Pallas hath denide me,
hir learned pen to guide me,
for that she dailie spide me,
with countrie how I stood:
Yet Ceres so did bold me,
with hir good lessons told me,
that rudenes cannot hold me,
from dooing countrie good.
By practise and ill speeding,
these lessons had their breeding,
and not by hearesaie, or reeding,
as some abrode haue blowne:
Who will not thus beleeue me,
so much the more they greeue me,
because they grudge to geeue me,
that is of right mine owne.
At first for want of teaching,
at first for trifles breaching,
at first for ouer reaching,[5]
and lacke of taking hid,[6]
was cause that toile so tost me,
that practise so much cost me,
that rashnes so much lost me,
or hindred as it did.
[Pg 10]
Yet will I not despaier
thorough Gods good gift so faier
through friendship, gold, and praier,
in countrie againe to dwell:
Where rent so shall not paine me,
but paines shall helpe to gaine me,
and gaines shall helpe maintaine me,
New lessons mo to tell.
For citie seemes a wringer,
the penie for to finger,
from such as there doe linger,
or for their pleasure lie:
Though countrie be more painfull,
and not so greedie gainfull,
yet is it not so vainfull,
in following fansies eie.
I haue no labour wanted
to prune this tree thus planted,
whose fruite to none is scanted,
in house or yet in feeld:
Which fruite, the more ye taste of,
the more to eate, ye haste of,
the lesse this fruite ye waste of,[7]
such fruite this tree doth yeeld.
My[8] tree or booke thus framed,
with title alreadie named,
I trust goes forth vnblamed,
in your good Lordships name:
As my good Lord I take you,
and neuer will forsake you,
so now I craue to make you
defender of the same.
Your seruant Thomas Tusser.

[1] In the edition of 1575 the word Thomas, and the words following Beaudesert, do not occur, and the whole Epistle precedes that to Lord William Paget.

[2] mort. 1620.

[3] lease. 1585 and 1620.

[4] quoted. 1585 and 1620.

[5] reacing. 1599.

[6] hede. 1577.

[7] Which fruite to say (who hast of)
though nere so much they taste of
yet can they make no waste of. 1577.

[8] this. 1573. 1577.

[Pg 11]


To the Reader.

Chap. 3.

I have been praid
to shew mine aid,
in taking paine,
not for the gaine,
but for good will,
to shew such skill
as shew I could:
That husbandrie
with huswiferie
as cock and hen,
to countrie men,
all strangenes gone,
might ioine in one,
as louers should.
I trust both this
performed is,
and how that here
it shall appere,
with iudgement right,
to thy delight,
is brought to passe:
That such as wiue,
and faine would thriue,
be plainly taught
how good from naught
may trim be tride,
and liuely spide,
as in a glasse.
What should I win,
by writing in
my losses past,
that ran as fast
as running streame,
from reame to reame
that flowes so swift?
For that I could
not get for gould,
to teach me how,
as this doth yow,
through daily gaine,
the waie so plaine
to come by thrift.
What is a grote
or twaine to note,
once in the life
for man or wife,
to saue a pound,
in house or ground,
ech other weeke?[E16]
What more for health,
what more for wealth,
what needeth lesse,
run Iack, helpe Besse,
to staie amis,
not hauing this,
far off to seeke?
[Pg 12]
I do not craue
mo thankes to haue,
than giuen to me
alreadie be,
but this is all
to such as shall
peruse this booke:
That for my sake,
they gently take,
where ere they finde
against their minde,
when he or she
shall minded be
therein to looke.
And grant me now,
thou reader thow,
of termes to vse,
such choise to chuse,
as may delight
the countrie wight,
and knowledge bring:
For such doe praise
the countrie phraise,
the countrie acts,
the countrie facts,
the countrie toies,
before the ioies
of anie thing.
Nor looke thou here
that euerie shere[E17]
of euerie verse
I thus reherse
may profit take
or vantage make
by lessons such:
For here we see
things seuerall bee,
and there no dike,
but champion like,
and sandie soile,
and claiey toile,
doe suffer[1] much.
This[2] being waid,
be not afraid
to buie to proue,
to reade with loue,
to followe some,
and so to come
by practise true:
My paine is past,
thou warning hast,
th' experience mine,
the vantage thine,
may giue thee choice
to crie or reioice:
and thus adue.
Finis T. Tusser.

[1] differ. 1573; suffer. 1577.

[2] Thus. 1577.

[Pg 13]


An Introduction to the Booke of Husbandrie.[1]

Chap. 4.

Good husbandmen must moile & toile,
to laie to liue by laboured feeld:
Their wiues at home must keepe such coile,[E18]
as their like actes may profit yeeld.
For well they knowe,
as shaft from bowe,
or chalke from snowe,
A good round rent their Lords they giue,
and must keepe touch in all their paie:
With credit crackt else for to liue,
or trust to legs and run awaie.
Ceres, Goddesse of husbandry.
Though fence well kept is one good point,
and tilth well done, in season due;
Yet needing salue in time to annoint,
is all in all and needfull true:
As for the rest,
thus thinke I best,
as friend doth gest,
With hand in hand to leade thee foorth
to Ceres campe, there to behold
A thousand things as richlie woorth,
as any pearle is woorthie gold.

[1] This Introduction is not in the editions of 1573 or 1577.

[Pg 14]


A Preface to the buier of this booke.

Chap. 5.

What lookest thou herein to haue?
Fine verses thy fansie to please?
Of many my betters that craue,
Looke nothing but rudenes in thease.[E19]
What other thing lookest thou then?
Graue sentences many to finde?
Such, Poets haue twentie and ten,
Yea thousands contenting the minde.
What looke ye, I praie you shew what?
Termes painted with Rhetorike fine?
Good husbandrie seeketh not that,
Nor ist any meaning of mine.
What lookest thou, speake at the last?
Good lessons for thee and thy wife?
Then keepe them in memorie fast,
To helpe as a comfort to life.
What looke ye for more in my booke?
Points needfull and meete to be knowne?
Then dailie be suer to looke,
To saue to be suer thine owne.

* * * Mason remarks that this metre was peculiar to Shenstone.[E20]

[Pg 15]


The commodities of Husbandrie.

Chap. 6.

Let house haue to fill her,
Let land haue to till her.
No dwellers, what profiteth house for to stand?
What goodnes, vnoccupied, bringeth the land?
No labor no bread,
No host we be dead.
No husbandry vsed, how soone shall we sterue?
House keeping neglected, what comfort to serue?
Ill father no gift,
No knowledge no thrift.
The father an vnthrift, what hope to the sonne?
The ruler vnskilfull, how quickly vndonne?


Chap. 7.

As true as thy faith,
This riddle thus saith.
The praise of husbandrie.
I seeme but a drudge, yet I passe any King
To such as can vse me, great wealth I do bring.
Since Adam first liued, I neuer did die,
When Noe was shipman, there also was I.
The earth to susteine me, the sea for my fish:[E21]
Be readie to pleasure me, as I would wish.[1]
What hath any life, but I helpe to preserue,
What wight without me, but is ready to sterue.
[Pg 16]
In woodland, in Champion, Citie, or towne
If long I be absent, what falleth not downe?
If long I be present, what goodnes can want?
Though things at my comming were neuer so scant.
So many as looue me, and vse me aright,
With treasure and pleasure, I richly acquite.
Great kings I doe succour, else wrong it would go,
The King of al kings hath appointed it so.

[1] The earth is my storehouse, the sea my fishpond,
What good is in either, by me it is found. 1577.


The description of Husbandrie.

Chap. 8.

Of husband, doth husbandrie challenge that name,
of husbandrie, husband doth likewise the same
Where huswife and huswiferie, ioineth with thease,
there wealth in abundance is gotten with ease.
The name of a husband, what is it to saie?
of wife and the houshold the band and the staie:
Some husbandlie thriueth that neuer had wife,
yet scarce a good husband in goodnes of life.
The husband is he that to labour doth fall,
the labour of him I doe husbandrie call:
If thrift by that labour be any way caught,
then is it good husbandrie, else it is naught.
So houshold and housholdrie I doe define,
for folke and the goodes that in house be of thine
House keeping to them, as a refuge is set,
which like as it is, so report it doth get.
Be house or the furniture neuer so rude,
of husband and husbandrie, (thus I conclude:)
That huswife and huswiferie, if it be good,
must pleasure togither as cosins in blood.

[Pg 17]


The Ladder to thrift.

Chap. 9.

To take thy calling thankfully,[E22]
and shun[1] the path to beggery.
To grudge in youth no drudgery,
to come by knowledge perfectly.
To count no trauell slauerie,
that brings in penie sauerlie.
To folow profit earnestlie
but meddle not with pilferie.
To get by honest practisie,
and kéepe thy gettings couertlie.
To lash not out too lashinglie,
for feare of pinching penurie.
To get good plot to occupie,
and store and vse it husbandlie.
To shew to landlord curtesie,
and kéepe thy couenants orderlie.
To hold that thine is lawfullie,
for stoutnes or for flatterie.
To wed good wife for companie,
and liue in wedlock honestlie.
To furnish house with housholdry,
and make prouision skilfully.
To ioine to wife good familie,[E23]
and none to kéepe for brauerie.
To suffer none liue idlelie,
for feare of idle knauerie.
To courage wife in huswiferie,
and vse well dooers gentilie.
To keepe no more but néedfullie,
and count excesse vnsauerie.
To raise betimes the lubberlie,
both snorting Hob and Margerie.[2]
To walke thy pastures vsuallie,
to spie ill neighbours subtiltie.
To hate reuengement hastilie,
for loosing loue and amitie.
To loue thy neighbor neighborly,
and shew him no discurtesy.
To answere stranger ciuilie,
but shew him not thy secresie.
To vse no friend deceitfully,
to offer no man villeny.
To learne how foe to pacifie,
but trust him not too trustilie.
To kéepe thy touch substanciallie,
and in thy word vse constancie.
To make thy bandes aduisedly,
& com not bound through suerty.
To meddle not with vsurie,
nor lend thy monie foolishlie.
To hate to liue in infamie,
through craft, and liuing shiftingly.[3]
To shun all kinde of treachery,
for treason endeth horribly.
To learne to eschew ill cōpany,
and such as liue dishonestly.
To banish house of blasphemie,
least crosses crosse vnluckelie.[E24]
To stop mischance, through policy,
for chancing too vnhappily.
To beare thy crosses patiently,
for worldly things are slippery.
To laie to kéepe from miserie,
age comming on so créepinglie.
To praie to God continuallie,
for aide against thine enimie.
To spend thy Sabboth holilie,
and helpe the needie pouertie.[4]
To liue in conscience quietly,
and kéepe thy selfe from malady.
To ease thy sicknes spéedilie,
er helpe be past recouerie.
To séeke to God for remedie,
for witches prooue vnluckilie.
These be the steps vnfainedlie:
to climbe to thrift by husbandrie.
These steps both reach, and teach thee shall:
To come by thrift, to shift withall.

* * * Stanzas 25, 27, 28, 32, 37 are not in the edition of 1577. After 31 the edition of 1577 has:—

To train thy child vp vertuously
that vertue vice may qualifie.
To bridle wild otes fantasie,[E25]
to spend thee naught vnthriftely.

[1] shonne. 1577.

[2] To rise betimes up readely. 1577.

[3] naughtily. 1573, 1557.

[4] poore in misery. 1577.

[Pg 18]


Good husbandlie lessons worthie to be followed of such as will thriue.

Chap. 10.

God sendeth and giueth both mouth and the meat,
and blesseth vs al with his benefits great:
Then serue we that God that so richly doth giue,
shew loue to our neighbors, and lay for to liue.
As bud by appearing betokneth the spring,
and leafe by her falling the contrarie thing:
So youth bids vs labour, to get as we can,
for age is a burden to laboring man.
A competent liuing, and honestly had,
makes such as are godlie both thankfull and glad:
Life neuer contented, with honest estate,
lamented is oft, and repented too late.
Count neuer wel gotten that naughtly is got,
nor well to account of which honest is not:[E26]
Looke long not to prosper, that wayest not this,
least prospering faileth, and all go amisse.
Laie wisely to marrie.
True wedlock is best, for auoiding of sinne,
the bed vndefiled much honour doth winne:
Though loue be in choosing farre better than gold,
let loue come with somewhat, the better to hold.[E27]
Concord bringeth foyson.
Where cooples agree not is ranker and strife,
where such be together is seldome good life:
Where cooples in wedlock doe louelie agree,
there foyson remaineth, if wisedome there bee.
[Pg 19]
Wife and children craue a dwelling.
Who looketh to marrie must laie to keepe house,
for loue may not alway be plaieing with douse:
If children encrease, and no staie of thine owne,
what afterwards followes is soone to be knowne.
Thee for thriue.
Hostisses grudge: nurses craue.
Once charged with children, or likelie to bee,
giue ouer to sudgerne, that thinkest to thee:[E28]
Least grutching of hostis, and crauing of nurse,
be costlie and noisome to thee and thy purse.
Live within thy Tedder.
Good husbands that loueth good houses to keepe
are oftentimes careful when other doe sleepe:
To spend as they may, or to stop at the furst,
for running in danger, or feare of the wurst.
By haruest is ment al thy stock.
Go count with thy cofers,[2] when haruest is in,
which waie for thy profite, to saue or to win:
Of tone of them both, if a sauer wee smel,[E29]
house keeping is godlie where euer we dwel.
Be thine own purs bearer.
Sonne, think not thy monie purse bottom to burn,
but keepe it for profite, to serue thine owne turn:
A foole and his monie be soone at debate,
which after with sorrow repents him too late.[E30]
Good bargaine a dooing, make priuie but few,
in selling, refraine not abrode it to shew:
In making make haste, and awaie to thy pouch,
in selling no haste, if ye dare it auouch.[E31]
Euill landlord.
Good Landlord who findeth, is blessed of God,
A cumbersome Landlord is husbandmans rod:
He noieth, destroieth, and al to this drift,
to strip his poore tenant of ferme and of thrift.
[Pg 20]
Rent corne.
Rent corn[E32] who so paieth, (as worldlings wold haue,
so much for an aker) must liue as a slaue:
Rent corne to be paid, for a reasnable rent,
at reasnable prises is not to lament.
Foure beggers.
Once placed for profit, looke neuer for ease,
except ye beware of such michers[E33] as thease:
Unthriftines, Slouthfulnes, Careles and Rash,
that thrusteth thee headlong to run in the lash.
Thrifts officers.
Make monie thy drudge, for to follow thy warke,
Make wisedome controler, good order thy clarke:
Prouision Cater, and skil to be cooke,
make steward of all, pen, inke, and thy booke.
Thrifts phisicke.
Make hunger thy sauce,[E34] as a medcine for helth,
make thirst to be butler, as physick for welth:
Make eie to be vsher, good vsage to haue,
make bolt to be porter, to keepe out a knaue.
Thrifts bailie.
Make husbandrie bailie, abrode to prouide,
make huswiferie dailie at home for to guide:
Make cofer fast locked, thy treasure to keepe,
make house to be sure, the safer to sleepe.
Husbandly armors.
Make bandog[E35] thy scoutwatch, to barke at a theefe,
make courage for life to be capitaine cheefe:
Make trapdore thy bulwarke, make bell to be gin,[4]
make gunstone and arrow shew who is within.
Théeves to thrift.
The credite of maister, to brothell his man,
and also of mistresse, to minnekin Nan,
Be causers of opening a number of gaps,
That letteth in mischiefe and many mishaps.[E36]
[Pg 21]
Friends to thrift.
Good husband he trudgeth, to bring in the gaines,
good huswife she drudgeth, refusing no paines:
Though husband at home be to count[5] ye wote what,[E37]
yet huswife within is as needfull as that.
Enimie to thrift.
What helpeth in store to haue neuer so much,
halfe lost by ill vsage, ill huswiues, and such:
So, twentie lode bushes, cut downe at a clap,
such heede may be taken, shall stop but a gap.[E38]
Sixe noiances to thrift.
A retcheles[6] seruant, a mistres that scowles,
a rauening mastife, and hogs that eate fowles:
A giddie braine maister, and stroyal his knaue,
brings ruling to ruine, and thrift to hir graue.
Inough is a praise.
With some vpon Sundaies, their tables doe reeke,
and halfe the weeke after, their dinners to seeke:[E39]
Not often exceeding, but alwaie inough,
is husbandlie fare, and the guise of the plough.
Ech daie to be feasted, what husbandrie wurse,
ech daie for to feast, is as ill for the purse:
Yet measurely feasting with neighbors among,
shal make thee beloued, and liue the more long.
Thrifts aduises.
Things husbandly handsom let workman contriue,
but build not for glorie, that thinkest to thriue:
Who fondlie in dooing consumeth his stock,
in the end for his follie doth get but a mock.
Spoilers to thrift.
Spend none but your owne, howsoeuer ye spend,
for bribing[7] and shifting, haue seldom good end:
In substance although ye haue neuer so much,
delight not in parasites, harlots, and such.[8]
[Pg 22]
Be suretie seldome, (but neuer for much)
for feare of purse penniles hanging by such:
Or Skarborow warning,[E40] as ill I beleeue,
when (sir I arest yee[E41]) gets hold of thy sleeue.
Use (legem pone[E42]) to paie at thy daie,
but vse not (Oremus[E43]) for often delaie:
Yet (Præsta quæsumus[E44]) out of a grate,
Of al other collects,[E45] the lender doth hate.
Be pinched by lending, for kiffe nor for kin,
nor also by spending, by such as come in;
Nor put to thy hand betwixt bark and the tree,
least through thy owne follie so pinched thou bee.[E46]
As lending to neighbour, in time of his neede,
winnes love of thy neighbour, and credit doth breede,
So neuer to craue, but to liue of thine owne,
brings comforts a thousand, to many vnknowne.
Who liuing but lends? and be lent to they must;
else buieng and selling might lie in the dust;
But shameles and craftie, that desperate are,
make many ful honest the woorser to fare.[E47]
At some time to borow, account it no shame,
if iustlie thou keepest thy touch for the same:
Who quick be to borow, and slow be to paie,
their credit is naught, go they neuer so gaie.
By shifting and borrowing, who so as liues,
not well to be thought on, occasion giues:
Then lay to liue warily, and wisely to spend,
for prodigall liuers haue seldom good end.
[Pg 23]
Some spareth too late, and a number with him,
the foole at the bottom, the wise at the brim:[E48]
Who careth nor spareth, till spent he hath all,
Of bobbing, not robbing, be fearefull he shall.
Where welthines floweth, no friendship can lack,
whom pouertie pincheth, hath friendship as slack:
Then happie is he by example that can
take heede by the fall of a mischieued man.[E49]
Who breaketh his credit, or cracketh it twise,
trust such with a suretie, if ye be wise:
Or if he be angrie, for asking thy due,
once euen, to him afterward, lend not anue.
Account it wel sold that is iustlie well paid,
and count it wel bought that is neuer denaid:
But yet here is tone, here is tother doth best,
for buier and seller, for quiet and rest.
Leaue Princes affaires undeskanted on,
and tend to such dooings as stands thee vpon:[E50]
Feare God, and offend not the Prince nor his lawes,
and keepe thyselfe out of the Magistrates clawes.[12]
As interest or vsurie plaieth the dreuil,
so hilback and filbellie biteth as euil:
Put dicing among them, and docking the dell:
and by and by after, of beggerie smell.[13]
Thrifts Auditor.
Once weekelie remember thy charges to cast,
once monthlie see how thy expences may last:
If quarter declareth too much to be spent,
for feare of ill yeere take aduise of thy rent.
[Pg 24]
Who orderlie entreth his paiment in booke,
may orderlie find them againe (if he looke.)
And he that intendeth but once for to paie:
shall find this in dooing the quietest waie.
In dealing vprightlie this counsel I teach,
first recken, then write, er[14] to purse yee doe reach,
Then paie and dispatch him, as soone as ye can:
for lingring is hinderance to many a man.
Haue waights, I aduise thee, for siluer & gold,
for some be in knauerie now a daies bold:
And for to be sure good monie to pay:
receiue that is currant, as neere as ye may.
Delight not for pleasure two houses to keepe,
least charge without measure vpon thee doe creepe.
And Jankin and Jenikin[E51] coosen thee so
to make thee repent it, er yeere about go.
The stone that is rouling can gather[15] no mosse,[E52]
who often remooueth is sure of losse.
The rich it compelleth to paie for his pride;
the poore it vndooeth on euerie side.
The eie of the maister enricheth the hutch,
the eie of the mistresse auaileth as mutch.
Which eie, if it gouerne, with reason and skil,
hath seruant and seruice, at pleasure and wil.
Who seeketh reuengement of euerie wrong,
in quiet nor safetie continueth long.
So he that of wilfulnes trieth the law,
shall striue for a coxcome, and thriue as a daw.[E53]
[Pg 25]
To hunters and haukers, take heede what ye saie,
milde answere with curtesie driues them awaie:
So, where a mans better wil open a gap,
resist not with rudenes, for feare of mishap.[E54]
A man in this world for a churle that is knowne,
shall hardlie in quiet keepe that is his owne:
Where lowlie and such as of curtesie smels,
finds fauor and friendship where euer he dwels.
Keepe truelie thy Saboth, the better to speed,
Keepe seruant from gadding, but when it is need.
Keepe fishdaie and fasting daie, as they doe fal:[E55]
what custome thou keepest, let others keepe al.
Though some in their tithing be slack or too bold,
be thou vnto Godward not that waie too cold:
Euill conscience grudgeth, and yet we doe see
ill tithers ill thriuers most commonlie bee.
Paie weekelie thy workman, his houshold to feed,
paie quarterlie seruants, to buie as they need:
Giue garment to such as deserue and no mo,
least thou and thy wife without garment doe go.
Beware raskabilia, slothfull to wurke,
purloiners and filchers, that loueth to lurke.
Away with such lubbers, so loth to take paine,
that roules in expences, but neuer no gaine.
Good wife, and good children, are worthie to eate,
good seruant, good laborer, earneth their meate:
Good friend, and good neighbor, that fellowlie gest,
with hartilie welcome, should haue of the best.
[Pg 26]
Depart not with al that thou hast to thy childe,
much lesse vnto other, for being beguilde:
Least, if thou wouldst gladlie possesse it agen,
looke for to come by it thou wottest not when.
The greatest preferment that childe we can giue,
is learning and nurture, to traine him to liue:
Which who so it wanteth, though left as a squier,
consumeth to nothing, as block in the fier.
When God hath so blest thee, as able to liue,
and thou hast to rest thee, and able to giue,
Lament thy offences, serue God for amends,
make soule to be readie when God for it sends.
Send fruites of thy faith to heauen aforehand,
for mercie here dooing, God blesseth thy land:
He maketh thy store with his blessing to swim,
and after, thy soule to be blessed with him.
Some lay to get riches by sea and by land,
and ventreth his life in his enimies hand:
And setteth his soule vpon sixe or on seauen,[E56]
not fearing nor caring for hell nor for heauen.
Some pincheth, and spareth, and pineth his life,
to cofer vp bags for to leaue to his wife:
And she (when he dieth) sets open the chest,
for such as can sooth hir and all away wrest.
Good husband, preuenting the frailnes of some,
takes part of Gods benefits, as they doo come,
And leaueth to wife and his children the rest,
each one his owne part, as he thinketh it best.
These lessons approoued, if wiselie ye note,
may saue and auantage ye many a grote.
Which if ye can follow, occasion found,
then euerie lesson may saue ye a pound.

[1] Stanzas 2, 3, and 4 are wanting in 1573 and 1577.

[2] coefers. 1577.

[3] St. 14 is not in ed. of 1577.

[4] be ginne. 1577.

[5] compt. 1577.

[6] reachelesse. 1577.

[7] bringing. 1577.

[8] In lieu of last two lines, the edition of 1577 reads:

Tithe duely and truely with harty good will,
that god and his blessing may dwell with thee still.

[9] Stanzas 30 and 31 are wanting in 1573 and 1577.

[10] Stanza 34 is not in 1577.

[11] Stanzas 35 and 36 are not in 1577.

[12] In lieu of last two lines, the edition of 1577 reads—

In substance, although ye have never so much,
delight not in parasites, harlots, and such.

[13] and smell of a begger where ever ye dwell. 1577.

[14] or. 1577.

[15] gether. 1577.

[16] St. 52 is not in 1577; sts. 56, 58, 59 not in 1573 (M.); 56, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62 not in 1577.

[Pg 27]


An habitation inforced better late than neuer,
vpon these words Sit downe Robin and rest thee.[E57]

Chap. 11.

My friend, if cause doth wrest thee,
Ere follie hath much opprest thee:
Farre from acquaintance kest thee,
Where countrie may digest thee,
Let wood and water request thee,
In good corne soile to nest thee,
Where pasture and meade may brest thee,
And healthsom aire inuest thee.
Though enuie shall detest thee,
Let that no whit molest thee,
Thanke God, that so hath blest thee,
And sit downe Robin & rest thee.

* * * The title in the edition of 1577 reads:
An habitation enforced aduisedly to be followed better late than never, &c.


[Not in 1577.]

The fermers dailie diet.

Chap. 12.

A plot set downe, for fermers quiet,
as time requires, to frame his diet:
With sometime fish, and sometime fast,
that houshold store may longer last.[E58]
[Pg 28]
Let Lent well kept offend not thee,
for March and Aprill breeders bee:
Spend herring first, saue saltfish last,
for saltfish is good, when Lent is past.
When Easter comes, who knowes not than,
that Veale and Bakon is the man:[E59]
And Martilmas beefe[1][E60] doth beare good tack,
when countrie folke doe dainties lack.
When Mackrell ceaseth from the seas,
John Baptist brings grassebeefe and pease.
Fresh herring plentie, Mihell brings,
with fatted Crones,[2] and such old things.[E61]
All Saints doe laie for porke and souse,
for sprats and spurlings for their house.[E62]
At Christmas play and make good cheere,
for Christmas comes but once a yeere.
A caueat.
Though some then doe, as doe they would,
let thriftie doe, as doe they should.
For causes good, so many waies,
keepe Embrings[E63] wel, and fasting daies:
Fish daies.
A thing needful.
What lawe commands, we ought to obay,
for Friday, Saturne, and Wednesday.[E64]
The land doth will, the sea doth wish,
spare sometime flesh, and feede of fish.
The last remedie.
Where fish is scant, and fruit of trees,
Supplie that want with butter and cheese.
T. Tusser.

[1] "Dry'd in the Chimney as Bacon, and is so called because it was usual to kill the Beef for this Provision about the Feast of St. Martin, Nov. 11th."—T.R.(= Tusser Redivivus, here and elsewhere)

[2] "A Crone is a Ewe, whose teeth are so worne down that she can no longer keep her sheep-walk."—T.R.

[Pg 29]


[Not in 1577.]

A description of the properties of windes all the times of the yeere.

Chap. 13.

In winter.
North winds send haile, South winds bring raine,
East winds we bewail, West winds blow amaine:
North east is too cold, South east not too warme,
North west is too bold, South west doth no harme.
At the spring.
The north is a noyer to grasse of all suites,
The east a destroyer to herbe and all fruites:
The south with his showers refresheth the corne,
The west to all flowers may not be forborne.
The West, as a father, all goodnes doth bring,
The East, a forbearer, no manner of thing:
The South, as vnkind, draweth sicknesse too neere,
The North, as a friend, maketh all againe cleere.
God is the gouerner of winde and weather.
With temperate winde we be blessed of God,
With tempest we finde we are beat with his rod:
All power we knowe to remaine in his hand,
How euer winde blowe, by sea or by land.
Though windes doe rage, as windes were wood,
And cause spring tydes to raise great flood,
And loftie ships leaue anker in mud,[E65]
Bereafing many of life and of blud;
Yet true it is, as cow chawes cud,
And trees at spring doe yeeld forth bud,
Except winde stands as neuer it stood,
It is an ill winde turnes none to good.[E66]

[Pg 30]


[Not in 1577.]

Of the Planets.

Chap. 14.

As huswiues are teached, in stead of a clock,
how winter nights passeth, by crowing of cock;
So here by the Planets, as far as I dare,
some lessons I leaue for the husbandmans share.
Of the rising and going down of the sun.
If day star appeareth, day comfort is ny,
If sunne be at south, it is noone by and by:
If sunne be at westward, it setteth anon,
If sunne be at setting, the day is soone gon.
Of the Moone changing.
Moone changed, keepes closet three daies as a Queene,
er she in hir prime will of any be seene:
If great she appereth, it showreth out,
If small she appereth, it signifieth drout.[E67]
At change or at full, come it late or else soone,
maine sea is at highest, at midnight and noone:
But yet in the creekes it is later high flood,
through farnesse of running, by reason as good.
Of flowing and ebbing to such as be verie sick.
Tyde flowing is feared, for many a thing,
great danger to such as be sick it doth bring:
Sea eb by long ebbing some respit doth giue,
and sendeth good comfort to such as shal liue.[E68]

[Pg 31]


Septembers Abstract.

Chap. 15.

Now enter John,
old fermer is gon.
What champion vseth,
that woodland refuseth.
Good ferme now take,
kéepe still, or forsake.
What helpes to reuiue
the thriuing to thriue.
Plough, fence, & store
aught else before.
By tits and such
few gaineth much.
Horse strong and light
soone charges quite.[2]
Light head and purse,
what lightnes wurse.
Who goeth[3] a borrowing,
goeth a sorrowing.[E69]
Few lends (but fooles)
their working tooles.[4]
Gréene rie haue some,
er Mihelmas come.
Grant soile hir lust,
sowe rie in the dust.
Cleane rie that sowes,
the better crop mowes.
Mix rie aright,
with wheat that is whight.
Sée corne sowen in,
too thick nor too thin.
For want of séede,
land yéeldeth wéede.
With sling or bowe,
kéepe corne from Crowe.
Trench hedge and forrow,
that water may thorow.
Déepe dike saues much,
from drouers and such.
Amend marsh wall,
Crab holes and all.
[Pg 32]
Geld bulles and rams,
sewe ponds, amend dams.
Sell webster thy wull,
fruite gather, grapes pull.
For fear of drabs,
go gather thy crabs.
Plucke fruite to last,
when Mihell[5] is past.
Forget it not,
fruit brused will rot.
Light ladder and long
doth trée least wrong.
Go gather with skill,
and gather that will.
Driue hiue, good conie,
for waxe and for honie.
No driuing of hiue,
till yéeres past[6] fiue.
Good dwelling giue bée,
or hence goes[7] shée.
Put bore in stie,
for Hallontide nie.
With bore (good Cisse)
let naught be amisse.
Karle hempe, left gréene,
now pluck vp cléene.
Drowne hemp as ye néed,
once had out his séed.
I pray thee (good Kit)
drowne hempe in pit.
Of al the rest,
white hempe is best.
Let skilfull be gotten
least hempe prooue rotten.
Set strawberies, wife,
I loue them for life.
Plant Respe and rose,
and such as those.
Goe gather vp mast,
er[8] time be past.
Mast fats vp swine,
Mast kils vp kine.
Let hogs be roong,
both old and yoong.
No mast vpon oke,
no longer[9] vnyoke.
If hog doe crie,
giue eare and eie.
Hogs haunting corne
may not be borne.
Good neighbour thow
good custome alow,
No scaring with dog,
whilst mast is for hog.
[Pg 33]
Get home with the brake,
to brue with and bake,
To couer the shed
drie ouer the hed,
To lie vnder cow,
to rot vnder mow,[10]
To serue to burne,
for many a turne.
To sawpit drawe
boord log, to sawe.
Let timber be haile,
least profit doe quaile.
Such boord and pale
is readie sale.
Sawne slab let lie,
for stable and stie,
sawe dust spred thick,
makes alley trick.
Kéepe safe thy fence,
scare breakhedge thence.
A drab and a knaue
will prowle to haue.
Marke winde and moone,
at midnight and noone.
Some rigs thy plow,
some milks thy cow.
Red cur or black,
few prowlers lack.
Some steale, some pilch,
some all away filch,
Mark losses with gréefe,
through prowling théefe.
Thus endeth Septembers abstract, agréeing with Septembers husbandrie.[11]

¶ Other short remembrances.[12]

Now friend, as ye wish,
goe seuer thy fish:
When friend shall come,
to be sure of some.
Thy ponds renew,
put éeles in stew,
To léeue[13] till Lent,
and then to be spent.
Set priuie or prim,
set boxe like him.
Set Giloflowers[14] all,
that growes on the wall.
Set herbes some more,
for winter store.
Sowe séedes for pot,
for flowers sowe not.
Here ends Septembers short remembrances.[15]

[1] Stanzas 1 and 2 not in 1577.

[2] quight. 1577.

[3] goes. 1577.

[4] After st. 8, in 1577, follow sts. 36, 37, of August's Abstract. Many stanzas of Sept. Abst., 1577, occur as Aug. Works after harvest in 1580.

[5] Migchel. 1577.

[6] nere. 1577.

[7] goeth. 1577.

[8] nere. 1577.

[9] lenger. 1577.

[10] To lie under mow,
to rot under kow. 1577.

[11] This and similar notes under other months do not occur in 1577.

[12] This and similar notes under other months do not occur in 1577.

[13] liue. 1577.

[14] Gelliflowers. 1577.

[15] This and similar notes under other months do not occur in 1577.

[Pg 34]


Septembers husbandrie.

Chap. 15.

September blowe soft,
Till fruite be in loft.
Forgotten, month past,
Doe now at the last.[1]
At Mihelmas lightly new fermer comes in,
new husbandrie forceth him new to begin:
Old fermer, still taking the time to him giuen,
makes August to last vntill Mihelmas euen.[E70]
New fermer may enter (as champions say)
on all that is fallow, at Lent ladie day:
In woodland, old fermer to that will not yeeld,
for loosing of pasture, and feede of his feeld.[E71]
Ferme take or giue over.
Prouide against Mihelmas,[3] bargaine to make,
for ferme to giue ouer, to keepe or to take:
In dooing of either, let wit beare a stroke,
for buieng or selling of pig in a poke.[E72]
Twelue good properties.
Good ferme and well stored, good housing and drie,
good corne and good dairie, good market and nie:
Good shepheard, good tilman, good Jack and good Gil,
makes husband and huswife their cofers[4] to fil.
Haue euer a good fence.
Let pasture be stored, and fenced about,
and tillage set forward, as needeth without:
Before ye doe open your purse to begin,
with anything dooing for fancie within.
[Pg 35]
Best cattle most profit.
No storing of pasture with baggedglie tit,
with ragged,[5] with aged, and euil athit:[6]
Let carren and barren be shifted awaie,
for best is the best, whatsoeuer ye paie.
Strong and light.
Horse, Oxen, plough, tumbrel, cart, waggon, & waine,
the lighter and stronger, the greater thy gaine.
The soile and the seede, with the sheafe and the purse,
the lighter in substance, for profite the wurse.
Hate borowing.
To borow to daie and to-morrow to mis,
for lender and borower, noiance it is:
Then haue of thine owne, without lending vnspilt,
what followeth needfull, here learne if thou wilt.[7]

* * * The stanzas of No. 16 are continued after the following Digression.


A digression to husbandlie furniture.

Barne furniture.
Barne locked, gofe ladder, short pitchforke and long,
flaile, strawforke and rake, with a fan that is strong:
Wing, cartnaue and bushel, peck, strike readie hand,
get casting sholue,[E73] broome, and a sack with a band.
Stable furniture.
A stable wel planked, with key and a lock,
walles stronglie wel lyned,[8] to beare off a knock:
A rack and a manger, good litter and haie,
swéete chaffe and some prouender euerie daie.
A pitchfork, a doongfork, seeue, skep[E74] and a bin,
a broome and a paile to put water therein:
A handbarow, wheelebarow, sholue and a spade,
a currie combe, mainecombe, and whip for a Jade.
[Pg 36]
A buttrice[9] and pincers, a hammer and naile,
an aperne[E75] and siszers for head and for taile:
Hole bridle and saddle, whit lether[E76] and nall,
with collers and harneis, for thiller and all.
A panel and wantey, packsaddle and ped,[E77]
A line to fetch litter, and halters for hed.
With crotchis and pinnes, to hang trinkets theron,
and stable fast chained, that nothing be gon.
Cart furniture.
Strong exeltred cart, that is clouted[10] and shod,[11][E78]
cart ladder and wimble, with percer and pod:
Wheele ladder for haruest, light pitchfork and tough,
shaue, whiplash[12] wel knotted, and cartrope ynough.
A Coeme is halfe a quarter.
Ten sacks, whereof euerie one holdeth a coome,[E79]
a pulling hooke[E80] handsome, for bushes and broome:
Light tumbrel and doong crone, for easing sir wag,
sholue, pickax, and mattock, with bottle and bag.
Husbandry tooles.
A grinstone, a whetstone, a hatchet and bil,
with hamer and english naile, sorted with skil:
A frower of iron, for cleaning of lath,
with roule for a sawpit, good husbandrie hath.
A short saw and long saw, to cut a too logs,
an ax and a nads,[E81] to make troffe for thy hogs:
A Douercourt beetle,[E82] and wedges with steele,
strong leuer to raise vp the block fro the wheele.
Plough furniture.
Two ploughs and a plough chein, ij culters, iij shares,
with ground cloutes & side clouts for soile that so tares:
With ox bowes and oxyokes, and other things mo,
for oxteeme and horseteeme, in plough for to go.[E83]
[Pg 37]
A plough beetle, ploughstaff,[E84] to further the plough,
great clod to a sunder that breaketh so rough;
A sled for a plough, and another for blocks,
for chimney in winter, to burne vp their docks.
Sedge collers[13] for ploughhorse, for lightnes of neck,
good seede and good sower, and also seede peck:
Strong oxen and horses, wel shod and wel clad,
wel meated and vsed, for making thee sad.
A barlie rake toothed, with yron and steele,
like paier of harrowes, and roler doth weele:
A sling for a moether,[E85] a bowe for a boy.
a whip for a carter, is hoigh de la roy.[E86]
A brush sithe and grasse sithe, with rifle to stand,
a cradle[E87] for barlie, with rubstone and sand:
Sharpe sikle and weeding hooke, haie fork and rake,
a meake for the pease, and to swinge vp the brake.
Haruest tooles.
Short rakes for to gather vp barlie to binde,
and greater to rake vp such leauings behinde:
A rake for to hale vp the fitchis that lie,
a pike for to pike them vp handsom to drie.
A skuttle or skreine, to rid soile fro the corne,
and sharing sheares readie for sheepe to be shorne:
A fork and a hooke, to be tampring in claie,[16]
a lath hammer, trowel, a hod, or a traie.
[Pg 38]
Strong yoke for a hog, with a twicher and rings,
with tar in a tarpot,[E88] for dangerous things:[17]
A sheepe marke, a tar kettle, little or mitch,
two pottles of tar to a pottle of pitch.
Long ladder to hang al along by the wal,
to reach for a neede to the top of thy hal:
Beame, scales, with the weights, that be sealed and true,[E89]
sharp moulspare with barbs, that the mowles do so rue.
Sharpe cutting spade, for the deuiding of mow,
with skuppat and skauel, that marsh men alow:
A sickle to cut with, a didall and crome
for draining of ditches, that noies thee at home.
A clauestock and rabetstock, carpenters craue,
and seasoned timber, for pinwood to haue:
A Jack for to saw vpon fewell for fier,
for sparing of firewood, and sticks fro the mier.
Soles, fetters, and shackles, with horselock and pad,
a cow house for winter, so meete to be had:
A stie for a bore, and a hogscote for hog,
a roost for thy hennes, and a couch for thy dog.
Here endeth husbandlie furniture.

* * * In the edition of 1577 stanzas 31-46 of Augusts Husbandrie (post) are found here.

[Pg 39]

[16 contd.]

Sowing of rie.
Thresh seed and to fanning, September doth crie,
get plough to the field, and be sowing of rie:
To harrow the rydgis, er euer ye strike,[E90]
is one peece[20] of husbandrie Suffolk doth like.
Sowe timely thy whitewheat, sowe rie in the dust,
let seede haue his longing, let soile haue hir lust:
Let rie be partaker of Mihelmas spring,
to beare out the hardnes that winter doth bring.
Some mixeth to miller the rie with the wheat,
Temmes lofe on his table to haue for to eate:
But sowe it not mixed, to growe so on land,
least rie tarie wheat, till it shed as it stand.
If soile doe desire to haue rie with the wheat,
by growing togither, for safetie more great,
Let white wheat be ton, be it deere, be it cheape,
the sooner to ripe, for the sickle to reape.
Though beanes be in sowing but scattered in,
yet wheat, rie, and peason, I loue not too thin:
Sowe barlie and dredge,[E91] with a plentifull hand,
least weede, steed of seede, ouer groweth thy land.
Kéeping of crowes.
No sooner a sowing, but out by and by,
with mother[23] or boy that Alarum can cry:
And let them be armed with sling or with bowe,
to skare away piggen, the rooke and the crowe.[E92]
Water furrough.
Seed sowen, draw a forrough, the water to draine,
and dike vp such ends as in harmes[24] doe remaine:
For driuing of cattell or rouing that waie,
which being preuented, ye hinder their praie.
[Pg 40]
Amend marsh walles.
Saint Mihel[25] doth bid thee amend the marsh wal,[E93]
the brecke and the crab hole, the foreland and al:
One noble in season bestowed theron,
may saue thee a hundred er winter be gon.
Gelding of rams.
Now geld with the gelder the ram and the bul,
sew ponds, amend dammes, and sel webster thy wul:
Out fruit go and gather, but not in the deaw,
with crab and the wal nut, for feare of a shreaw.
Gathering of fruit.
The Moone in the wane, gather fruit for to last,
but winter fruit gather when Mihel is past:
Though michers that loue not to buy nor to craue,
makes some gather sooner, else few for to haue.
Too early gathering is not best.
Fruit gathred too timely wil taste of the wood,
wil shrink[26] and be bitter, and seldome prooue good:
So fruit that is shaken, or beat off a tree,
with brusing in falling, soone faultie wil bee.
Driuing of hiues.
Now burne vp the bees that ye mind for to driue,
at Midsomer driue them and saue them aliue:
Place hiue in good ayer, set southly and warme,
and take in due season wax, honie, and swarme.
Preseruing of bées.
Set hiue on a plank, (not too low by the ground)
where herbe with the flowers may compas it round:
And boordes to defend it from north and north east,
from showers and rubbish, from vermin and beast.
Stie up the bore.
At Mihelmas safely go stie vp thy Bore,
least straying abrode, ye doo see him no more:
The sooner the better for Halontide nie,
and better he brawneth if hard he doo lie.[E94]
[Pg 41]
Shift bore (for il aire) as best ye do thinke,
and twise a day giue him fresh vittle and drinke:
And diligent Cislye, my dayrie good wench,
make cleanly his cabben, for measling[E95] and stench.
Gathering of winter hempe.
Now pluck vp thy hempe, and go beat out the seed,
and afterward water it as ye see need:
But not in the riuer where cattle should drinke,
for poisoning them and the people with stinke.[E96]
Whitest hempe best sold.
Hempe huswifely vsed lookes cleerely and bright,
and selleth it selfe by the colour so whight:
Some vseth to water it, some do it not,[27]
be skilful in dooing, for feare it do rot.
Setting of strawberies & roses, &c.
Wife, into thy garden, and set me a plot,
with strawbery rootes, of the best to be got:
Such growing abroade, among thornes in the wood,
wel chosen and picked prooue excellent good.
Gooseberies & Respis.
The Barbery, Respis, and Goosebery too,
looke now to be planted as other things doo:
The Goosebery, Respis, and Roses, al three,
with Strawberies vnder them trimly agree.
Gathering of mast.
To gather some mast, it shal stand thee vpon,
with seruant and children, er mast be al gon:
Some left among bushes shal pleasure thy swine,
for feare of a mischiefe keepe acorns fro kine.[E97]
Rooting of hogs.
For rooting of pasture ring hog ye had neede,
which being wel ringled the better do feede:
Though yong with their elders wil lightly keepe best,
yet spare not to ringle both great and the rest.
[Pg 42]
Yoking of swine.
Yoke seldom thy swine while the shacktime[28] doth last,
for diuers misfortunes that happen too fast:
Or if ye do fancie whole eare of the hog,
giue eie to il neighbour and eare to his dog.
Hunting of hogs.
Keepe hog I aduise thee from medow and corne,
for out aloude crying that ere he was borne:
Such lawles, so haunting, both often and long,
if dog set him chaunting he doth thee no wrong.[E98]
Ringling of hogs.
Where loue among neighbors do beare any stroke,
whiles shacktime indureth men vse not to yoke:
Yet surely ringling is needeful and good,
til frost do enuite them to brakes in the wood.
Carriage of brakes.
Get home with thy brakes, er an sommer be gon,
for teddered cattle to sit there vpon:
To couer thy houel, to brewe and to bake,
to lie in the bottome, where houel ye make.
Sawe out thy timber.
Now sawe out thy timber, for boord and for pale,
to haue it vnshaken,[E99] and ready to sale:
Bestowe it and stick it,[30] and lay it aright,
to find it in March, to be ready in plight.
Slabs of timber.
Saue slab[31] of thy timber for stable and stie,
for horse and for hog the more clenly to lie:
Saue sawe dust, and brick dust, and ashes so fine,
for alley to walke in, with neighbour of thine.
Hedge breakers.
Keepe safely and warely thine vttermost fence,
with ope gap and breake hedge do seldome dispence:
Such runabout prowlers, by night and by day,
see punished iustly for prowling away.
[Pg 43]
Learne to knowe Hew prowler.
At noone if it bloweth, at night if it shine,
out trudgeth Hew make shift, with hooke & with line:[E100]
Whiles Gillet, his blouse, is a milking thy cow,
Sir Hew is a rigging thy gate or the plow.
Black or red dogs.
Such walke with a black or a red little cur,
that open wil quickly, if anything stur;
Then squatteth the master, or trudgeth away,
and after dog runneth as fast as he may.
Some prowleth for fewel, and some away rig
fat goose, and the capon, duck, hen, and the pig:
Some prowleth for acornes, to fat vp their swine,
for corne and for apples, and al that is thine.
Thus endeth Septembers husbandrie.[32]

* * * Many stanzas do not occur or are not in the same order in 1577.

[1] In 1577 these and similar couplets at the beginning of each month's Husbandrie, precede the month's Abstract instead.

[2] Sts. 1 and 2 not in 1577.

[3] Mighelmas. 1577.

[4] coefers. 1577.

[5] rakged. 1577.

[6] at hyt. 1577.

[7] Or borow with sorow as long as thou wilt. 1577.

[8] liened. 1577.

[9] To pare horse's hoofs with.-T.R.

[10] "Clouting is arming the Axle-Tree with Iron plates."—T.R.

[11] "Arming the Fellowes with Iron Strakes, or a Tire as some call it."—T.R. Strakes are segments of a tire.

[12] "Of a tough piece of Whitleather."—T.R.

[13] "Lightest and coolest, but indeed not so comly as those of Wadmus."—T.R.

[14] St. 15 not in 1577, but as follows:—

Rakes also for barley, long toothed in bed,
and greater like toothed for barley so shed.

and first couplet of st. 16.

[15] St. 16 not thus in 1577; see note above, and next note.

[16] In 1577 the second couplet of st. 16 makes a stanza with the following:

Strong fetters and shakles, with horslock and pad;
Strong soles, and such other thinges, meete to be had.

[17] Hog yokes, and a twicher, and ringes for a hog,
with tar in a pot, for the byeting of dog. 1577.

[18] St. 19 not in 1577.

[19] St. 20 not in 1577.

[20] This point of good husbandry, etc. 1577.

[21] St. 11 not in 1577.

[22] Sts. 14 and 15 not in 1577, but nine stanzas which do not occur here.

[23] Cf. ante, ch. 17, st. 13 and note E85.

[24] Cf. post, ch. 19, st. 6.

[25] Mighel, here and in st. 18. 1577.

[26] "If Fruit stand too long it will be mealy, which is worse than shrively, for now most Gentlemen chuse the shriveled Apple."—T.R.

[27] "Ther is a Water-retting and a Dew-retting, which last is done on a good Rawing, or aftermath of a Meadow Water."—T.R.

[28] "After Harvest."—T.R.

[29] This is placed before st. 9 in 1577.

[30] "Laying the Boards handsomely one upon another with sticks between."—T.R.

[31] The outermost piece.

[32] Cf. note 12, p. 33.


Octobers abstract.

Chap. 16.

Lay drie vp and round,
for barlie thy ground.
Too late doth kill,
too soone is as ill.
Maides little and great,
pick cleane séede wheat.
Good ground doth craue
choice séede to haue.
Flaies[E101] lustily thwack,
least plough séede lack.
Séede first go fetch,
for edish or etch,
Soile perfectly knowe,
er edish ye sowe.
White wheat, if ye please,
sowe now vpon pease.
[Pg 44] Sowe first the best,
and then the rest.
Who soweth in raine,
hath wéed to his paine.
But worse shall he spéed,
that soweth ill séed.
Now, better than later,
draw furrow for water.
Kéepe crowes, good sonne,
sée fencing[3] be donne.
Each soile no vaine
for euerie graine.
Though soile be but bad,
some corne may be had.
Naught proue, naught craue,
naught venter, naught haue.
One crop and away,
some countrie may say.
All grauell and sand,
is not the best land.
A rottenly mould
is land woorth gould.
Why wheat is smitten
good lesson is written.
The iudgement of some
how thistles doe come.
A iudgement right,
of land in plight.
Land, all forlorne,
not good for corne.
Land barren doth beare
small strawe, short eare.
Here maist thou réede
for soile what séede.
Tis tride ery hower,
best graine most flower.
Grosse corne much bran
the baker doth ban.
What croppers bée
here learne to sée.
Few after crop much,
but noddies and such.
Som woodland may crake,
thrée crops he may take.
First barlie, then pease,
then wheat, if ye please.
[Pg 45]
Two crops and away,
must champion say.
Where barlie did growe,
Laie[7] wheat to sowe.
Yet better I thinke,
sowe pease after drinke.
And then, if ye please,
sowe wheat after pease.
What champion knowes
that custome showes.
First barlie er rie,
then pease by and by.
Then fallow for wheat,
is husbandrie great.
A remedie sent,
where pease lack vent.
Fat peasefed swine
for drouer is fine.
Each diuers soile
hath diuers toile.
Some countries vse
that some refuse.
For wheat ill land,
where water doth stand.
Sowe pease or dredge
belowe in that redge.
Sowe acornes to prooue
that timber doe looue.
Sowe hastings[E102] now,
if land[8] it alow.
Learne soone to get
a good quickset.
For feare of the wurst
make fat away furst.
Fat that no more
ye kéepe for store.
Hide carren in graue,
lesse noiance to haue.
Hog measeled kill,
for flemming that will.
With peasebolt and brake
some brew and bake.
Old corne[10] worth gold,
so kept as it shold.
Much profit is rept,
by sloes well kept.
Kéepe sloes vpon bow,
for flixe of thy cow.
[Pg 46]
Of vergis be sure,
poore cattel to cure.
Thus endeth Octobers abstract, agréeing with Octobers husbandrie.

¶ Other short remembrances.[11]

Cisse, haue an eie
to bore in the stie.
By malt ill kept,
small profit is rept.
Friend, ringle thy hog,
for feare of a dog.
Rie straw up stack,
least Thacker doe lack.
Wheat straw drie saue,
for cattell to haue.
Wheat chaffe lay vp drie,
in safetie to lie.
Make handsome a bin,
for chaffe to lie in.
(Séede thresht) thou shalt
thresh barlie to malt.
Cut bushes to hedge,
fence medow and redge.
Stamp crabs that may,
for rotting away.
Make vergis and perie,[E103]
sowe kirnell and berie.
Now gather vp fruite,
of euerie suite.
Marsh wall too slight,
strength now, or god night.
Mend wals of mud,
for now it is good.
Where soile is of sand,
quick set out of hand.
To plots not full
ad bremble and hull.
For set no bar
whilst month hath an R.[E104]
Like note thou shalt
for making of malt.
Brew now to last
till winter be past.
Here ends Octobers short remembrances.[13]

[1] 1577 inserts—

Plie sowing a pace,
in euery place.

[2] St. 6 is not in 1577.

[3] furrowing. 1577.

[4] Sts. 8-30 do not occur here in 1577; but sts. 32-37 follow.

[5] Sts. 19 and 20 are in Septembers Abstract in 1577.

[6] In Septembers Abstract in 1577.

[7] strike. 1577.

[8] ground. 1577.

[9] In 1577, sts. 38 to the end are much transposed.

[10] graine. 1577.

[11] Cf. note 12, p. 33.

[12] First couplet of st. 50 not in 1577.

[13] Cf. note 12, p. 33.

[Pg 47]


Octobers husbandrie.

Chap. 17.

October good blast,
To blowe the hog mast.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Laie vp barlie land.
Now lay vp[E105] thy barley land, drie as ye can
when euer ye sowe it so looke for it than:
Get daily aforehand, be neuer behinde;
least winter preuenting do alter thy minde.
Who laieth vp fallow[E106] too soone or too wet,
with noiances many doth barley beset.
For weede and the water so soketh and sucks,
that goodnes from either it vtterly plucks.
Wheat sowing.
Greene rie in September when timely thou hast,
October for wheat sowing calleth as fast.
If weather will suffer, this counsell I giue,
Leaue sowing of wheat before Hallomas eue.
Sowe edish betimes.
Where wheat vpon edish ye mind to bestowe,
let that be the first of the wheat ye do sowe:
He seemeth to hart it and comfort to bring,
that giueth it comfort of Mihelmas spring.
Best wheat first sowen.
White wheat vpon peaseetch doth grow as he wold,
but fallow is best, if we did as we shold:[1]
Yet where, how, and when, ye entend to begin,
let euer the finest be first sowen in.[2]
Who soweth in raine, he shall reape it with teares,
who soweth in harmes,[4] he is euer in feares,
Who soweth ill seede or defraudeth his land,
hath eie sore abroode, with a coresie at hand.
[Pg 48]
Seede husbandly sowen, water furrow[6] thy ground,
that raine when it commeth may run away round,
Then stir about Nicoll, with arrow and bowe,
take penie for killing of euerie crowe.
[Not in 1577.]

A digression to the usage of diuers countries, concerning Tillage.

Each soile hath no liking of euerie graine,
nor barlie and wheat is for euerie vaine:
Yet knowe I no countrie so barren of soile
but some kind of corne may be gotten with toile.
In Brantham,[E107] where rie but no barlie did growe,
good barlie I had, as a meany did knowe:
Five seame of an aker I truely was paid,
for thirtie lode muck of each aker so laid.
In Suffolke againe, where as wheat neuer grew,
good husbandrie vsed good wheat land I knew:
This Prouerbe experience long ago gaue,
that nothing who practiseth nothing shall haue.
As grauell and sand is for rie and not wheat,
(or yeeldeth hir burden to tone the more great,)
So peason and barlie delight not in sand,
but rather in claie or in rottener land.
Wheat somtime is steelie or burnt as it growes,
for pride[7] or for pouertie practise so knowes.
Too lustie of courage for wheat doth not well,
nor after sir peeler he looueth to dwell.[E108]
[Pg 49]
Much wetnes, hog rooting, and land out of hart,
makes thistles a number foorthwith to vpstart.
If thistles so growing prooue lustie and long,
it signifieth land to be hartie and strong.
As land full of tilth and in hartie good plight,
yeelds blade to a length and encreaseth in might,
So crop vpon crop, vpon whose courage we doubt,
yeelds blade for a brag, but it holdeth not out.
The straw and the eare to haue bignes and length,
betokeneth land to be good and in strength.
If eare be but short, and the strawe be but small,
it signifieth barenes and barren withall.
White wheat or else red, red riuet or whight,
far passeth all other, for land that is light.
White pollard or red, that so richly is set,
for land that is heauie is best ye can get.
Maine wheat that is mixed with white and with red
is next to the best in the market mans hed:
So Turkey or Purkey wheat[E109] many doe loue,
because it is flourie, as others aboue.
Graie wheat is the grosest, yet good for the clay,
though woorst for the market, as fermer may say.
Much like vnto rie be his properties found,
coorse flower, much bran, and a peeler of ground.
Otes, rie, or else barlie, and wheat that is gray,
brings land out of comfort, and soone to decay:
One after another, no comfort betweene,
is crop vpon crop, as will quickly be seene.
[Pg 50]
Crop vpon crop.
Still crop vpon crop many farmers do take,
and reape little profit for greedines sake.
Though breadcorne & drinkcorn[E110] such croppers do stand:
count peason or brank, as a comfort to land.
Good land that is seuerall, crops may haue three,
in champion countrie it may not so bee:
Ton taketh his season, as commoners may,
the tother with reason may otherwise say.
Some vseth at first a good fallow to make,
to sowe thereon barlie, the better to take.
Next that to sowe pease, and of that to sowe wheat,
then fallow againe, or lie lay for thy neat.
First rie, and then barlie, the champion saies,
or wheat before barlie be champion waies:
But drinke before bread corne with Middlesex men,
then lay on more compas, and fallow agen.
Where barlie ye sowe, after rie or else wheat,
if land be vnlustie,[8] the crop is not great,
So lose ye your cost, to your coresie and smart,
and land (ouerburdened) is cleane out of hart.
Exceptions take of the champion land,
from lieng alonge from that at thy hand.
(Just by) ye may comfort with compas at will,
far off ye must comfort with fauor and skill.
Where rie or else wheat either barlie ye sowe,
let codware be next, therevpon for to growe:
Thus hauing two crops, whereof codware is ton,
thou hast the lesse neede, to lay cost therevpon.
[Pg 51]
Some far fro the market delight not in pease,
for that ery chapman they seeme not to please.
If vent of the market place serue thee not well,
set hogs vp a fatting, to drouer to sell.
Two crops of a fallow enricheth the plough,
though tone be of pease, it is land good ynough:
One crop and a fallow some soile will abide,
where if ye go furder lay profit aside.
Where peason ye had and a fallow thereon,
sowe wheat ye may well without doong therevpon:
New broken vpland, or with water opprest,
or ouer much doonged, for wheat is not best.
Where water all winter annoieth too much,
bestowe not thy wheat vpon land that is such:
But rather sowe otes, or else bullimong[E111] there,
gray peason, or runciuals, fitches, or tere.
Sowing of acorns.
Sowe acornes ye owners, that timber doe looue,
sowe hawe and rie with them the better to prooue;
If cattel or cunnie may enter to crop,
yong oke is in daunger of loosing his top.
Sowing of Hastings or fullams.
Who pescods delighteth to haue with the furst,
if now he do sowe them, I thinke it not wurst.
The greener thy peason and warmer the roome,
more lusty the layer, more plenty they come.
Go plow vp or delue vp, aduised with skill,
the bredth of a ridge, and in length as you will.
Where speedy quickset for a fence ye wil drawe,
to sowe in the seede of the bremble and hawe.[E112]
[Pg 52]
A disease in fat hogs.
Through plenty of acornes, the porkling to fat,
not taken in season, may perish by that,
If ratling or swelling get once to the throte,
thou loosest thy porkling, a crowne to a grote.[E113]
Not to fat for rearing.
What euer thing fat is, againe if it fall,
thou ventrest the thing and the fatnes withall,
The fatter the better, to sell or to kil,
but not to continue, make proofe if ye wil.
Burieng of dead cattell.
What euer thing dieth, go burie or burne,
for tainting of ground, or a woorser il turne.
Such pestilent smell of a carrenly thing,
to cattle and people great peril may bring.
Measeled hogs.
Thy measeled bacon, hog, sow, or thy bore,
shut vp for to heale, for infecting thy store:
Or kill it for bacon, or sowce it to sell,
for Flemming, that loues it so deintily well.[E114]
Strawwisps and peasbolts.
With strawisp and peasebolt, with ferne and the brake,
for sparing of fewel, some brewe and do bake,
And heateth their copper, for seething of graines:
good seruant rewarded, refuseth no paines.[E115]
Olde wheat better than new.
Good breadcorne and drinkcorne, full xx weekes kept,
is better then new, that at harvest is rept:
But foisty the breadcorne and bowd eaten malt,[E116]
for health or for profit, find noysome thou shalt.
By thend of October, go gather vp sloes,
haue thou in a readines plentie of thoes,
And keepe them in bedstraw, or still on the bow,
to staie both the flixe of thyselfe and thy cow.
[Pg 53]
A medicin for the cow flixe.
Seeith water and plump therein plenty of sloes,
mix chalke[10] that is dried in powder with thoes
Which so, if ye giue, with the water and chalke,
thou makest the laxe fro thy cow away walke.[E117]
Be sure of vergis (a gallond at least)
so good for the kitchen, so needfull for beast,
It helpeth thy cattel, so feeble and faint,
if timely such cattle with it thou acquaint.
Thus endeth Octobers husbandrie.

[1] White wheat upon pease etch is willing to grow
though best upon fallow as many do knowe. 1577.

[2] After st. 5, 1577 has st. 31 post.

[3] St. 6 not in 1577.

[4] "In harms or harms way, whether of Roads, ill Neighbours, Torrents of Water, Conies, or other Vermin."—T.R. Cf. ante, ch. 16, st. 15.

[5] In Septembers Husbandry, 1577.

[6] "Furrows drawn cross the Ridges in the lowest part of the Ground."—T.R.

[7] "or too much Dung."—T.R.

[8] "There is a sort of Barley, called Sprat Barley, or Battledore Barley, that will grow very well on lusty land. "—T.R.

[9] Stanza 40 is not in 1577.

[10] chawlk. 1577.

[11] Stanza 42 is not in 1577.


Nouembers abstract.

Chap. 18

Let hog once fat,
loose nothing of that.
When mast is gon,
hog falleth anon,
Still fat vp some,
till Shroftide come.
Now porke and souse,
beares tack in house.
Put barlie to malting,
lay flitches a salting.
Through follie too beastlie[E118]
much bacon is reastie.[1]
Some winnow, some fan,
some cast that can.[2]
In casting prouide,
for séede lay aside.
Thresh barlie thou shalt,
for chapman to malt.
Else thresh no more
but for thy store.
Till March thresh wheat,
but as ye doo eat,
Least baker forsake it
if foystines take it.
[Pg 54]
No chaffe in bin,
makes horse looke thin.
Sowe hastings now,
that hastings alow.
They buie it full déere,
in winter that réere.
Few fowles, lesse swine,
rere now, friend mine.
What losse, what sturs,
through rauening curs.
Make Martilmas béefe,
déere meate is a théefe.
Set garlike and pease,
saint Edmond to please.
When raine takes place,
to threshing apace.
Mad braine, too rough,
marres all at plough.
With flaile and whips,
fat hen short skips.
Some threshing by taske,
will steale and not aske:
Such thresher at night
walkes seldom home light.
Some corne away lag
in bottle and bag.
Some steales, for a iest,
egges out of the nest.
Lay stouer[E119] vp drie
in order to lie.
Poore bullock[5] doth craue
fresh straw to haue.
Make wéekly vp flower,
though threshers do lower:
Lay graine in loft
and turne it oft.
For muck, regard,
make cleane foule yard.
Lay straw to rot,
in watrie plot.
Hedlond vp plow,
for compas ynow.
For herbes good store,
trench garden more.
At midnight trie
foule priuies to fie.
Rid chimney of soot,
from top to the foot.
In stable, put now
thy horses for plow.
Good horsekeeper will
laie muck vpon hill.
Cut molehils that stand
so thick vpon land.
Thus endeth Novembers abstract, agréeing with Nouembers husbandrie.

[Pg 55]

¶ Other short remembrances.

Get pole, boy mine,
beate hawes to swine.
Driue hog to the wood,
brake rootes be good.
For mischiefe that falles,
looke well to marsh walles.
Drie laier get neate,
and plentie of meate.
Curst cattel that nurteth,
poore wennel soon hurteth.
Good neighbour mine,
ring well thy swine.
Such winter may serue,
hog ringled[7] will sterue.
In frost kéepe dog
from hunting of hog.
Here ends Nouembers short remembrances.

[1] resty. 1577

[2] 1577 reads—

Let husbandly man
make clene as he can.

[3] Not in 1577.

[4] Stanzas 7-10 are not in 1577.

[5] kow.

[6] St. 25 is not in 1577.

[7] ringd. 1577.


Nouembers husbandrie.

Chap. 19.

Nouember take flaile,
Let ship no more saile.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Slaughter time.
At Hallontide, slaughter time entereth in,
and then doth the husbandmans feasting begin
From thence vnto shroftide kill now and then some,
their offal for houshold the better wil come.[E120]
Dredge is otes and barlie.
Thy dredge and thy barley go thresh out to malt,
let malster be cunning, else lose it thou shalt:
Thencrease of a seame is a bushel for store,
bad else is the barley, or huswife much more.
[Pg 56]
Winnowing, fanning, and casting.
Some vseth to winnow,[1] some vseth to fan,
some vseth to cast it as cleane as they can:
For seede goe and cast it, for malting not so,
but get out the cockle,[2] and then let it go.[E121]
Threshing of barlie.
Thresh barlie as yet but as neede shal require,
fresh threshed for stoouer thy cattel desire:
And therefore that threshing forbeare as ye may,
till Candelmas comming, for sparing of hay.
Such wheat as ye keepe for the baker to buie,
vnthreshed till March in the sheafe let it lie,
Least foistnes take it if sooner yee thresh it,
although by oft turning ye seeme to refresh it.[E122]
Chaffe of corne.
Saue chaffe of the barlie, of wheate, and of rie,
from feathers and foistines, where it doth lie,
Which mixed with corne, being sifted of dust,
go giue to thy cattel, when serue them ye must.
Greene peason or hastings at Hallontide sowe,
in hartie good soile he requireth to growe:
Graie peason or runciuals cheerely to stand,
at Candlemas sowe, with a plentifull hand.
Leaue latewardly rering, keepe now no more swine,
but such as thou maist, with the offal of thine:
Except ye haue wherewith to fat them away,
the fewer thou keepest, keepe better yee may.
To rere vp much pultrie, and want the barne doore,
is naught for the pulter and woorse for the poore.
So, now to keepe hogs and to sterue them for meate,
is as to keepe dogs for to bawle in the streate.
[Pg 57]
As cat a good mouser is needfull in house,
because for hir commons she killeth the mouse,
So rauening curres, as a meany doo keepe,
makes master want meat, and his dog to kill sheepe.[E123]
Martilmas beefe.
(For Easter) at Martilmas hang vp a beefe,
for stalfed and pease fed plaie pickpurse the theefe:
With that and the like, er an grasse biefe come in,
thy folke shal looke cheerelie when others looke thin.
¶ Set garlike and beanes.
Set garlike and beanes, at S. Edmond[4] the king,
the moone in the wane, thereon hangeth a thing:[E124]
Thencrease of a pottle (well prooued of some)
shal pleasure thy houshold er peskod time come.
When raine is a let to thy dooings abrode,
set threshers a threshing to laie on good lode:
Thresh cleane ye must bid them, though lesser they yarn,
and looking to thriue, haue an eie to thy barne.
Cattle beaters.
Take heede to thy man in his furie and heate,
with ploughstaff and whipstock, for maiming thy neate:
To thresher for hurting of cow with his flaile,
or making thy hen to plaie tapple vp taile.[E125]
Corne stealers.
Some pilfering thresher will walke with a staffe,
will carrie home corne as it is in the chaffe,
And some in his bottle of leather so great[E126]
will carry home daily both barlie and wheat.
Kéepe dry thy straw.
If houseroome will serue thee, lay stouer vp drie,
and euerie sort by it selfe for to lie.
Or stack it for litter, if roome be too poore,
and thatch out the residue noieng thy doore.[5]
[Pg 58]
Euery wéeke rid thy barne flower.
Cause weekly thy thresher to make vp his flower,
though slothfull and pilferer thereat doo lower:
Take tub for a season, take sack for a shift,
yet garner for graine is the better for thrift.
All maner of strawe that is scattered in yard,
good husbandlie husbands haue daily regard,
In pit full of water the same to bestowe,
where lieng to rot, thereof profit may growe.
Digging of hedlonds.
Now plough vp thy hedlond,[6] or delue it with spade,
where otherwise profit but little is made:
And cast it vp high, vpon hillocks to stand,
that winter may rot it, to compas thy land.
Trenching of garden.
If garden requier it, now trench it ye may,
one trench not a yard from another go lay:
Which being well filled with muck by and by,
go couer with mould for a season to ly.
Clensing of priuies.
Foule priuies are now to be clensed and fide,
let night be appointed such baggage to hide:
Which buried in garden, in trenches alowe,
shall make very many things better to growe.
Sootie chimneyes.
The chimney all sootie would now be made cleene,
for feare of mischances, too oftentimes seene:
Old chimney and sootie, if fier once take,
by burning and breaking, soone mischeefe may make.[E127]
Put horse into stable.
When ploughing is ended, and pasture not great,
then stable thy horses, and tend them with meat:
Let season be drie when ye take them to house,
for danger of nittes, or for feare of a louse.[E128]
[Pg 59]
Sauing of doong.
Lay compas vp handsomly, round on a hill,
to walke in thy yard at thy pleasure and will,
More compas it maketh and handsom the plot,
if horsekeeper daily forgetteth it not.
Make hillocks of molehils, in field thorough out,
and so to remaine, till the yeere go about.
Make also the like whereas plots be too hie,
all winter a rotting for compas to lie.
Thus endeth Nouembers husbandrie.

[1] winnew. 1557.

[2] "If the Cockle be left in, it will work, and some say make the Drink the stronger."—T.R.

[3] Stanzas 7-10 are not in 1577.

[4] 20th November.

[5] "The rest may lie in the open Yard, for the Cattle to tread into Dung, which is the practice now a days, so that our Farmers are not so afraid of noying their Doors it seems as formerly, and that not without good reason."—T.R.

[6] T.R. thinks that here is meant "such Ground in Common Field-land, which the whole Shot (or parcel of Land belonging to many Men against which it lies) turn upon."

[7] St. 25 is not in 1577.


Decembers abstract.

Chap. 20.

No season to hedge,
get béetle and wedge.
Cleaue logs now all,
for kitchen and hall.
Dull working tooles
soone courage cooles.
Leaue off tittle tattle,
and looke to thy cattle.
Serue yoong poore elues
alone by themselues.
Warme barth for neate,
woorth halfe their meate.
The elder that nurteth
the yonger soone hurteth.
Howse cow that is old,
while winter doth hold.
Out once in a day,
to drinke and to play.
Get trustie to serue,
least cattle doo sterue.
And such as in déede
may helpe at a néede.
Obserue this law,
in seruing out straw.
In walking about,
good forke spie out.
[Pg 60]
At full and at change,
spring tides are strange.
If doubt ye fray,
driue cattle away.
Dank ling forgot
will quickly rot.
Here learne and trie
to turne it and drie.
Now stocks remooue,
that Orchards looue.
Set stock to growe
too thick nor too lowe.
Set now, as they com,
both cherie[1] and plom.
Shéepe, hog, and ill beast,
bids stock to ill feast.[2]
At Christmas is good
to let thy horse blood.
Mark here what rable
of euils in stable.
Mixe well (old gaffe)
horse corne with chaffe.
Let Jack nor Gill
fetch corne at will.
Some countries gift
to make hard shift.
Some cattle well fare
with fitches and tare.
Fitches and tares
be Norfolke wares.
Tares threshed with skill
bestowe as yée will.
Hide strawberies, wife,
to saue their life.
Knot, border, and all,
now couer ye shall.
Helpe bées, sweet conie,
with licour and honie.
Get campers a ball,
to campe therewithall.
Thus endeth Decembers abstract, agréeing with Decembers husbandrie.

¶ Other short remembrances.

Let Christmas spie
yard cleane to lie.
No labour, no sweate,
go labour for heate.
Féede dooues, but kill not,
if stroy them ye will not.
Fat hog or ye kill it,
or else ye doo spill it.
[Pg 61]
Put oxe in stall,
er oxe doo fall.
Who séetheth hir graines,
hath profit for paines.
Rid garden of mallow,
plant willow and sallow.
Let bore life render,
sée brawne sod tender,
For wife, fruit bie,
for Christmas pie.
Ill bread and ill drinke,
makes many ill thinke.
Both meate and cost
ill dressed halfe lost.
Who hath wherewithall,
may chéere when he shall:
But charged man,
must chéere as he can.
Here ends Decembers short remembrances.

[1] chearrey. 1577.

[2] St. 15.

Wind north, north east
bids stock to il feast. 1577.

[3] Sts. 19 and 20 are not in 1573 (M.); sts. 19, 20, and 24 are not in 1577.


Decembers husbandrie.

Chap. 21.

O dirtie December
For Christmas remember.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Béetle and wedges.
When frost will not suffer to dike and to hedge,
then get thee a heat with thy beetle and wedge
Once Hallomas come, and a fire in the hall,
such sliuers doo well for to lie by the wall.
Grinding stone and whetston.
Get grindstone and whetstone, for toole that is dull,
or often be letted and freat bellie full.
A wheele barrow also be readie to haue
at hand of thy seruant, thy compas to saue.
Seruing of cattle.
Giue cattle their fodder in plot drie and warme,
and count them for miring or other like harme.
Yoong colts with thy wennels together go serue,
least lurched by others they happen to sterue.[1]
[Pg 62]
Woodland countrie.
The rack is commended for sauing of doong,
so set as the old cannot mischiefe the yoong:[E129]
In tempest (the wind being northly or east)
warme barth[E130] vnder hedge is a sucker[2] to beast.
Housing of cattel.
The housing of cattel while winter doth hold,
is good for all such as are feeble and old:
It saueth much compas, and many a sleepe,
and spareth the pasture for walke of thy sheepe.[3]
For charges so little much quiet is won,
if strongly and handsomly al thing be don:
But vse to vntackle them once in a day,
to rub and to lick them, to drink and to play.
Ordering of cattel.
Get trustie to tend them, not lubberlie squire,
that all the day long hath his nose at the fire.[E131]
Nor trust vnto children poore cattel to feede,
but such as be able to helpe at a neede.
Serue riestraw out first, then wheatstraw and pease,
then otestraw and barlie, then hay if ye please:
But serue them with hay while the straw stouer last,
then loue they no straw, they had rather to fast.
Forkes and yokes.
Yokes, forks, and such other, let bailie spie out,
and gather the same as he walketh about.
And after at leasure let this be his hier,
to beath[E132] them and trim them at home by the fier.
Going of cattel in marshes.
As well at the full of the moone as the change,
sea rages in winter be sodainly strange.
Then looke to thy marshes, if doubt be to fray,
for feare of (ne forte) haue cattel away.
[Pg 63]
Looke to thy ling and saltfish.
Both saltfish and lingfish (if any ye haue)
through shifting and drieng from rotting go saue:
Least winter with moistnes doo make it relent,
and put it in hazard before[4] it be spent.
How to vse ling and haberden.
Broome fagot is best to drie haberden on,
lay boord vpon ladder if fagots be gon.
For breaking (in turning) haue verie good eie,
and blame not the wind, so the weather be drie.
Remoouing of trées.
Good fruit and good plentie doth well in the loft,
then make thee an orchard and cherish it oft:
For plant or for stock laie aforehand to cast,
but set or remooue it er Christmas be past.
An orchard point.
Set one fro other full fortie foote wide,
to stand as he stood is a part of his pride.
More faier, more woorthie, of cost to remooue,
more steadie ye set it, more likely to prooue.
Orchard and hopyard.
To teach and vnteach in a schoole is vnmeete,
to doe and vndoe to the purse is vnsweete.
Then orchard or hopyard, so trimmed with cost,
should not through follie be spoiled and lost.
Letting horse blood.
Er Christmas be passed let horse be let blood,
for many a purpose it doth them much good.
The daie of S. Stephen old fathers did vse:
if that doe mislike thee some other daie chuse.
Bréeding of the bots.
Looke wel to thy horses in stable thou must,
that haie be not foistie, nor chaffe ful of dust:
Nor stone in their prouender, feather, nor clots,
nor fed with greene peason, for breeding of bots.
[Pg 64]
Hog and hennes meate.
Some horsekeeper lasheth out prouender so,
some Gillian spendal so often doth go.
For hogs meat and hens meat, for that and for this,
that corne loft is empted er chapman hath his.
Some countries are pinched of medow for hay,
yet ease it with fitchis as well as they may.
Which inned and threshed and husbandlie dight,
keepes laboring cattle in verie good plight.
In threshing out fitchis one point I will shew,
first thresh out for seede of the fitchis a few:
Thresh few fro thy plowhorse, thresh cleane for the cow,
this order in Norfolke good husbands alow.
¶ Strawberies.
If frost doe continue, take this for a lawe,
the strawberies looke to be couered with strawe.
Laid ouerly trim vpon crotchis and bows,
and after vncouered as weather allows.
¶ Gilleflowers.
The gilleflower also, the skilful doe knowe,
doe looke to be couered, in frost and in snowe.
The knot, and the border, and rosemarie gaie,
do craue the like succour for dieng awaie.
¶ How to preserue bees.
Go looke to thy bees, if the hiue be too light,
set water and honie, with rosemarie dight.
Which set in a dish ful of sticks in the hiue,
from danger of famine[6] yee saue them aliue.
In medow or pasture (to growe the more fine)
let campers be camping[8][E133] in any of thine:
Which if ye doe suffer when lowe is the spring,
you gaine to your selfe a commodious thing.
Thus endeth Decembers husbandrie.

[1] "The old will be apt to hunge or gore the younger."—T.R.

[2] succor. 1620.

[3] and trimly refresheth the walk of the sheepe. 1577.

[4] er ere. 1577.

[5] Sts. 19 and 20 are not in 1577.

[6] from famen and daunger. 1577.

[7] St. 24 is not in 1577.

[8] "Football playing, at which they are very dextrous in Norfolk."—T.R.

[Pg 65]


A digression to hospitalitie.

Chap. 22.[1]

Leaue husbandrie sleeping a while ye must doo,
to learne of housekeeping a lesson or twoo.
What euer is sent thee by trauell and paine,
a time there is lent thee to rendrit againe.
Although ye defend it, vnspent for to bee,
another shall spend it, no thanke vnto thee.
How euer we clime, to accomplish the mind,
we haue but a time thereof profit to find.

[1] Chap. 22 is wanting in 1573 (M). In 1577 it is printed in twice the number of lines.


A description of time, and the yeare.

Chap. 23.

Of God to thy dooings a time there is sent,
which endeth with time that in dooing is spent.
For time is it selfe but a time for a time,
forgotten ful soone, as the tune of a chime.
In Spring time we reare, we doo sowe, and we plant,
in Sommer get vittels, least after we want.
In Haruest we carie in corne and the fruit,
in Winter to spend as we neede of ech suit.
[Pg 66]
The yeere I compare, as I find for a truth,
the Spring vnto childhood, the Sommer to youth,
The Haruest to manhood, the Winter to age:
all quickly forgot as a play on a stage.[E134]
Time past is forgotten, er men be aware,
time present is thought on with woonderfull care,
Time comming is feared, and therefore we saue,
yet oft er it come, we be gone to the graue.


A description of life and riches.

Chap. 24.

Who liuing but daily discerne it he may,
how life as a shadow doth vanish away;
And nothing to count on so suer to trust
as suer of death and to turne into dust.[E135]
The lands and the riches that here we possesse
be none of our owne, if a God we professe,
But lent vs of him, as his talent of gold,
which being demanded, who can it withhold?
Atrop, or death.
God maketh no writing that iustly doth say
how long we shall haue it, a yeere or a day;
But leaue it we must (how soeuer we leeue)
when Atrop[E136] shall pluck vs from hence by the sleeue.
To death we must stoupe, be we high, be we lowe,
but how and how sodenly, few be that knowe:
What carie we then, but a sheete to the graue,
to couer this carkas, of all that we haue?

[Pg 67]


A description of housekeeping.

Chap. 25.

What then of this talent, while here we remaine,
to studie to yeeld it to God with a gaine?
And that shall we doo, if we doo it not hid,
but vse and bestow it, as Christ doth vs bid.
What good to get riches by breaking of sleepe,
but (hauing the same) a good house for to keepe?
Not onely to bring a good fame to thy doore,
but also the praier to win of the poore.
Of all other dooings house keeping is cheefe,
for daily it helpeth the poore with releefe;
The neighbour, the stranger, and all that haue neede,
which causeth thy dooings the better to speede.
Though harken[1] to this we should euer among,[E137]
yet cheefly at Christmas, of all the yeare long.
Good cause of that vse may appeare by the name,
though niggerly niggards doo kick at the same.

[1] hardnes. 1577


A description of the feast of the birth of Christ, commonly called Christmas.[1]

Chap. 26.

Of Christ cometh Christmas, the name with the feast,
a time full of ioie to the greatest and least:
At Christmas was Christ (our Sauiour) borne,
the world through sinne altogether forlorne.
[Pg 68]
At Christmas the daies doo[2] begin to take length,
of Christ doth religion cheefly[3] take strength.
As Christmas is onely a figure or trope,
so onely in Christ is the strength of our hope.
At Christmas we banket, the rich with the poore,
who then (but the miser) but openeth [h]is doore?
At Christmas of Christ many Carols we sing,
and giue many gifts in the ioy of that King.
At Christmas in Christ we reioice and be glad,
as onely of whom our comfort is had;[E138]
At Christmas we ioy altogether with mirth,
for his sake that ioyed vs all with his birth.

[1] A description of Christmas. 1577.

[2] the day doth. 1577.

[3] Of Christ our faith doth begin, etc. 1577.


A description of apt time to spend.

Chap. 27.

Let such (so fantasticall) liking not this,
nor any thing honest that ancient is,
Giue place to the time that so meete we doo see
appointed of God as it seemeth to bee.
At Christmas good husbands[E139] haue corne on the ground,
in barne, and in soller, woorth many a pound,
With plentie of other things,[1] cattle and sheepe,
all sent them (no doubt on) good houses to keepe.
At Christmas the hardnes of Winter doth rage,
a griper of all things and specially age:
Then lightly[E140] poore people, the yoong with the old,
be sorest oppressed with hunger and cold.
[Pg 69]
At Christmas by labour is little to get,
that wanting, the poorest in danger are set.
What season then better, of all the whole yeere,
thy needie poore neighbour to comfort and cheere?

[1] Things plentie in house. 1577.


Against fantasticall scruplenes.

Chap. 28.

At this time and that time[1] some make a great matter,
som help not but hinder the poore with their clatter.
Take custome from feasting, what commeth then last,
where one hath a dinner, a hundred shall fast.
To dog in the manger some liken I could,
that hay will eate none, nor let other that would;
Some scarce in a yeere giue a dinner or twoo,
nor well can abide any other to doo.
Play thou the good fellow, seeke none to misdeeme,
disdaine not the honest, though merie they seeme:
For oftentimes seene, no more verie a knaue
than he that doth counterfait most to be graue.

[1] this thing and that thing. 1577.


Christmas husbandlie fare.

Chap. 29.

Good husband and huswife now cheefly be glad,
things handsom to haue, as they ought to be had;
They both doo prouide against Christmas doo come,
to welcome good neighbour, good cheere to haue some.
[Pg 70]
Christmas cuntrie fare.
Good bread and good drinke, a good fier in the hall,
brawne, pudding and souse, and good mustard withall.
Beefe, mutton, and porke, shred pies of the best,
pig, veale, goose and capon,[E141] and turkey well drest;
Cheese, apples and nuts, ioly Carols to heare,
as then in the countrie is counted good cheare.
What cost to good husband is any of this?
good houshold prouision onely it is.
Of other the like, I doo leaue out a menie,
that costeth the husbandman neuer a penie.


A Christmas Caroll of the birth of Christ vpon the tune of King Salomon.[E142]

Chap. 30.

Was not Christ our Sauiour
sent to vs fro God aboue?
not for our good behauiour,
but onely of his mercie and loue.
If this be true, as true it is,
truely in deede,
great thanks to God to yeeld for this,
then had we neede.
This did our God for very troth,
to traine to him the soule of man,
and iustly to performe his oth
to Sara and to Abram than,
That through his seed all nations should
most blessed bee:
As in due time performe he would,
as now wee see.[1]
[Pg 71]
Which woonderously is brought to pas,
and in our sight alredie donne,
by sending as his promise was
(to comfort vs) his onely sonne,
Euen Christ (I meane) that virgins child,
in Bethlem[2] borne,
that Lambe of God, that Prophet mild,
with crowned thorne.
Such was his loue to saue vs all,
from dangers of the curse of God,
that we stood in by Adams fall,
and by our owne deserued rod,
That through his blood and holie name
who so beleeues,[3]
and flie from sinne and abhors the same,[E143]
free mercie he geeues.
For these glad newes this feast doth bring:
to God the Sonne and holy Ghost
let man giue thanks, reioice, and sing,
from world to world, from cost to cost:
for all good gifts so many waies
that God doth send,
let vs in Christ giue God the praies,
till life shall end.
T. Tusser.
At Christmas be merie and thankfull withall,
And feast thy poore neighbors, the great with the small,
Yea, all the yeere long, to the poore let vs giue,
Gods blessing to folow vs while wee doo liue.

[1] all flesh should see. 1577.

[2] Bethelem. 1577.

[3] to such as beleues. 1577.

[Pg 72]


Januaries abstract.

Chap. 31.

Bid Christmas adew,
thy stock now renew.
Who killeth a neat,
hath cheaper his meat.
Fat home fed souse,
is good in a house.
Who dainties loue,
a begger shall proue.
Who alway selles,
in hunger dwelles.
Who nothing saue,
shall nothing haue.
Lay durt vpon heapes,
some profit it reapes.
When weather is hard,
get muck out of yard.
A fallow bestowe,
where pease shall growe.
Good peason and white,
a fallow will quite.
Go gather quickset,
the yongest go get.
Dig garden, stroy mallow,
set willow and sallow.
Gréene willow for stake
in bank will take.[1]
Let Doe go to buck,
with Conie[2] good luck.
Spare labour nor monie,
store borough with conie.
Get warrener bound
to vermin thy ground.
Féed Doues, but kill not,
if loose them ye will not.
Doue house repaire,
make Douehole faire.
For hop ground cold,
Doue doong woorth gold.
Good gardiner mine,
make garden fine.
Set garden pease,
and beanes if ye please.
Set Respis and Rose,
yoong rootes of those.
The timelie buier
hath cheaper his fier.
[Pg 73]
Some burns without wit,
some fierles sit.
Now season is good
to lop or fell wood.
Prune trées some allows
for cattle to brows.
Giue shéepe to their fées
the mistle of trées.
Let lop be shorne
that hindreth corne.
Saue edder and stake,
strong hedge to make.
For sap as ye knowe,
let one bough growe.
Next yéere ye may
that bough cut away.
A lesson good
to encrease more wood.
Saue crotchis of wud,
saue spars and stud.
Saue hop for his dole,
the strong long pole.
How euer ye scotch,
saue pole and crotch.
From Christmas to May,
weake cattle decay.
With vergis acquaint
poore bullock so faint;
This medcin approoued
is for to be looued.
Let plaister lie
thrée daies to trie:
too long if ye stay,
taile rots away.
Eawes readie to yeane
craues ground rid cleane.
Kéepe shéepe out of briers,
Kéepe beast out of miers.
Kéepe bushes from bill,
till hedge ye will:
Best had for thy turne,
their rootes go and burne.
No bushes of mine,
if fence be thine.
In stubbed plot,
fill hole with clot.[4]
Rid grasse of bones,
of sticks and stones.
Warme barth giue lams,
good food to their dams,
Look daily well to them,
least dogs vndoo them.
[Pg 74]
Yoong lamb well sold,
fat lamb woorth goold.
Kéepe twinnes for bréed,
as eawes haue néed.[5]
One calfe if it please ye,
now reared shall ease ye.
Calues likely reare,
at rising of yeare.
Calfe large and leane
is best to weane.
Calfe lickt take away,
and howse it[6] ye may.
This point I allow
for seruant and cow.
Calues yonger than other
learne one of another.
No danger at all
to geld as they fall.
Yet Michel cries[E144]
please butchers eies.
Sow ready to fare,
craues huswiues[7] care.
Leaue sow but fiue,
the better to thriue.
Weane such for store
as sucks before.
Weane onely but thrée
large bréeders to bée.
Lamb, bulchin,[E145] and pig,
geld vnder the big.
Learne wit, sir dolt,
in gelding of colt.
Geld yoong thy filly,
else perish will ginny.
Let gelding alone,
so large of bone.
By breathely tits
few profit hits.
Bréede euer the best,
and doo of the rest,
Of long and large,
take huswife a charge.
Good cow & good ground[8]
yéelds yéerely a pound.
Good faring sow
holds profit with cow.
Who kéepes but[9] twaine,
the more may gaine.
Tith iustly, good garson,
else driue will the parson.
Thy garden twifallow,
stroy hemlock and mallow.
Like practise they prooue,
that hops doe looue.
Now make and wand in
trim bower to stand in.
[Pg 75] Leaue wadling about,
till arbor be out.
Who now sowes otes,
gets gold and grotes.
Who sowes in May
gets little that way.
Go breake vp land,
get mattock in hand,
Stub roote so tough,
for breaking of plough.
What greater crime
then losse of time?
Lay land or[12] lease
breake vp if ye please.
But fallow not yet,
that hast any wit.
Where drink ye sowe,
good tilth bestowe.
Small profit is found,
by péeling of ground.
Land past the best
cast vp to[13] rest.
Thus endeth Januaries abstract, agréeing with Januaries husbandrie.

¶ Other short remembrances.

Get pulling hooke (sirs),
for broome and firs.
Pluck broome, broome still,
cut broome, broome kill.
Broome pluckt by and by,
breake vp for rie.
Friend ringle thy hog,
or looke for a dog.
In casting prouide,
for séede lay aside.
Get doong, friend mine,
for stock and vine.
If earth be not soft,
go dig it aloft.
For quamier get bootes,
stub alders and rootes.
Hop poles waxe scant,
for poles mo plant.
Set chestnut and walnut,
set filbeard and smalnut.
Peach, plumtrée, & cherie,
yoong bay and his berie.
Or set their stone,
vnset leaue out none.
Sowe kirnels to beare,
of apple and peare.
All trées that beare goom
set now as they coom.
Now set or remooue
such stocks as ye looue.[14]
Here ends Januaries short remembrances.


Green set as a stake
in banke they wil take. 1577.

[2] conney. 1577.

[3] St. 16 and the second couplets in sts. 21 and 22 are not here in 1577.

[4] Here follows in 1577,

Take for thy turne,
their roots go burne.

[5] feede. 1577.

[6] if. 1577.

[7] huswifes. 1577.

[8] Good milch kow and sound. 1577.

[9] both. 1577.

[10] St. 42 is not in 1577.

[11] Sts. 49 and 50 are not in 1577.

[12] for. M.

[13] the. 1577.


And set or remoue
what fruite ye loue. 1577.

[Pg 76]


Of trees or fruites to be set or remooued.

  1. Apple trées of all sorts.
  2. Apricocks.[E146]
  3. Barberies.
  4. Boollesse,[E147] black & white.
  5. Cheries,[E148] red and black.
  6. Chestnuts.[E149]
  7. Cornet plums.[E150]
  8. Damsens,[1][E151] white & black.
  9. Filbeards,[E152] red and white.
  10. Goose beries.[E153]
  11. Grapes,[E154] white and red
  12. Gréene or grasse plums.[E155]
  13. Hurtillberies.[E156]
  14. Medlars[E157] or marles.
  15. Mulberie.[E158]
  16. Peaches,[E159] white and red.
  17. Peares of all sorts.
  18. Perareplums,[2][E160] black & yelow.
  19. Quince[E161] trées.
  20. Respis.[E162]
  21. Reisons.[E163]
  22. Small nuts.
  23. Strawberies, red and white.
  24. Seruice trées.[E164]
  25. Walnuts.[E165]
  26. Wardens,[E166] white and red.
  27. Wheat plums.
Now set ye may
the box and bay,
Haithorne and prim,
for clothes trim.

[1] Damisens. 1577.

[2] sic also in 1577.


Januaries husbandrie.

Chap. 32.

A kindly good Janiuéere,
Fréeseth pot by the féere.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Husbandly lessons.
When Christmas is ended, bid feasting adue,
goe play the good husband, thy stock to renue.
Be mindfull of rearing, in hope of a gaine,
dame profit shall giue thee reward for thy paine.
[Pg 77]
Who both by his calfe and his lamb will be knowne,
may well kill a neate and a sheepe of his owne.
And he that can reare vp a pig in his house,
hath cheaper his bacon and sweeter his souse.
Who eateth his veale, pig and lamb being froth,[E167]
shall twise in a weeke go to bed without broth.[1]
Vnskilfull that passe not, but sell away sell,
shall neuer haue plentie where euer they dwell.
Be greedie in spending, and careles to saue,
and shortly be needie and readie to craue.
Be wilfull to kill and vnskilfull to store,
and looke for no foison[2], I tell thee before.[E168]
Lay dirt vpon heapes, faire yard to be seene,
if frost will abide it, to feeld with it cleene.[E169]
In winter a fallow some loue to bestowe,
where pease for the pot[3] they intend for to sowe.
Quick set now.
In making or mending as needeth thy ditch,
get set to quick set it, learne cunningly whitch.[4]
In hedging (where clay is) get stake as ye knowe,
of popler and willow, for fewell to growe.
Kéepe cleane thy douehous.
Leaue killing of conie,[5] let Doe go to buck,
and vermine thy burrow, for feare of ill luck.
Feed Doue (no more killing), old Doue house[E170] repaire,
saue doue dong for hopyard, when house ye make faire.
[Pg 78]
¶ Runciual peason.
Dig garden, stroy mallow, now may ye at ease,
and set (as a daintie) thy runciuall pease.[6]
Go cut and set roses, choose aptly thy plot,
the rootes of the yoongest are best to be got.
Timelie prouision for fewell.
In time go and bargaine, least woorser doo fall,
for fewell, for making, for carriage and all.
To buie at the stub[E171] is the best for the buier,
more timelie prouision, the cheaper is fier.
Ill husbandrie.
Some burneth a lode at a time in his hall,
some neuer leaue burning til burnt they haue all.
Some making of hauock, without any wit,
make many poore soules without fire to sit.
Pruning of trées.
If frost doo continue, this lesson doth well,
for comfort of cattel the fewell to fell:
From euerie tree the superfluous bows
now prune for thy neat therevpon to go brows.[7]
Mistle and iuie.
In pruning and trimming all maner of trees,
reserue to ech cattel their properly fees.
If snowe doo continue, sheepe hardly that fare
craue Mistle and Iuie for them for to spare.
Lopping of pollengers.
Now lop for thy fewell old pollenger growen,
that hinder the corne or the grasse to be mowen.
In lopping and felling, saue edder and stake,[E172]
thine hedges as needeth to mend or to make.
In lopping,[8] old Jocham, for feare of mishap,
one bough stay vnlopped, to cherish the sap:
The second yeere after then boldly ye may,
for driping his fellowes, that bough cut away.
[Pg 79]
The propertie of soft wood.
Lop popler and sallow, elme, maple, and prie,
well saued from cattle, till Sommer to lie.
So far as in lopping, their tops ye doo fling,
so far without planting yoong copie will spring.[E173]
Such fewell as standing a late ye haue bought,
now fell it, and make it, and doo as ye ought.
Giue charge to the hewers (that many things mars),
to hew out for crotches, for poles, and for spars.
Hoppoles and crotches.
If hopyard or orchard ye mind for to haue,
for hoppoles and crotches in lopping go saue.
Which husbandlie spared may serue at a push,
and stop by so hauing two gaps with a bush.
From Christmas, till May be well entered in,
some cattle waxe faint, and looke poorely and thin.
And cheefly when prime[E174] grasse[10] at first doth appeere,
then most is the danger of all the whole yeere.
A medicen for faint cattell.
Take vergis and heate it, a pint for a cow,
bay salt a hand full,[11] to rub tong ye wot how.
That done, with the salt, let hir drinke off the rest:
this manie times raiseth the feeble vp best.
To fasten loose téeth in a bullock.
Poore bullock with browsing and naughtily fed,
scarce feedeth, hir teeth be so loose in hir hed:
Then slise ye the taile where ye feele it so soft,
with soote and with garlike bound to it aloft.[12]
[Pg 80]
Ewes vpon eaning.
By brembles and bushes, in pasture too full,
poore sheepe be in danger and loseth their wull.[13]
Now therefore thine ewe, vpon lamming so neere,
desireth in pasture that all may be cleere.
Leaue grubbing or pulling of bushes (my sonne)
till timely thy fences require to be donne.
Then take of the best, for to furnish thy turne,
and home with the rest, for the fier to burne.
Stubbing of gréenes.
In euerie greene,[14] if the fence be not thine,
now stub vp the bushes, the grasse to be fine.
Least neighbour doo dailie so hack[15] them beliue,[E175]
that neither thy bushes nor pasture can thriue.
In ridding[16] of pasture with turfes that lie by,[17]
fill euerie hole vp, as close as a dy.
The labour is little, the profit is gay,
what euer the loitering labourers say.
The sticks and the stones go and gather vp cleene,
for hurting of sieth or for harming of greene.[18]
For feare of Hew prowler,[E176] get home with the rest,
when frost is at hardest, then carriage is best.
Yoong lambes.
Yoong broome or good pasture thy ewes doo require,
warme barth and in safetie their lambes doo desire.
Looke often well to them, for foxes and dogs,
for pits and for brembles, for vermin and hogs.
[Pg 81]
More daintie[19] the lambe, the more woorth to be sold,
the sooner the better for eaw that is old.
But if ye doo minde to haue milke of the dame,
till Maie doo not seuer the lambe fro the same.
Rearing of lambes.
Ewes yeerly by twinning rich maisters doo make,
the lamb of such twinners for breeders go take.
For twinlings[E177] be twiggers, encrease for to bring,
though som for their twigging Peccantem[E178] may sing.
Rearing of calues.
Calues likely that come between Christmas and Lent,
take huswife to reare, or else after repent:
Of such as doo fall betweene change and the prime,[20]
no rearing, but sell or go kill them in time.
Howsing of cattel.
Howse calfe, and go sockle it twise in a day,
and after a while, set it water and hay.
Stake ragged to rub on, no such as will bend,
then weane it well tended, at fiftie daies end.[21]
The senior weaned his yoonger shall teach,
how both to drinke water and hay for to reach.[22]
More stroken and made of when ought it doo aile,
more gentle ye make it, for yoke or the paile.[E179]
Of gelding.
Geld bulcalfe and ram lamb, as soone as they fall,
for therein is lightly no danger at all.
Some spareth the ton for to pleasure the eie,
to haue him shew greater when butcher shall bie.
Sowes readie to farrow this time of the yeere
are for to be made of and counted full deere.
For now is the losse of a fare of the sow
more great then the losse of two calues of thy cow.
[Pg 82]
¶ Rearing of pigs.
Of one sow togither reare few aboue fiue,
and those of the fairest and likest to thriue.
Ungelt of the best keepe a couple for store,
one bore pig and sow pig, that sucketh before.[E180]
¶ A way to haue large bréed of hogs.
Who hath a desire to haue store verie large,
at Whitsontide let him giue huswife a charge,
To reare of a sow at once onely but three,
and one of them also a bore let it bee.
¶ Gelding time.
Geld vnder the dam, within fortnight at least,
and saue both thy monie and life of the beast.
Geld later with gelders as many one do,
and looke of a doozen to geld away two.
Gelding of horse coltes.
Thy colts for thy saddle geld yoong to be light,
for cart doo not so, if thou iudgest aright.
Nor geld not but when they be lustie and fat:
for there is a point, to be learned in that.
Gelding of fillies.
Geld fillies (but tits) er an nine daies of age,
they die else of gelding (or gelders doo rage).
Yoong fils[E181] so likelie of bulke and of bone:
keepe such to be breeders, let gelding alone.
Reare the fairest of al things.
For gaining a trifle, sell neuer thy store,
what ioy to acquaintance, what pleasureth more?
The larger of bodie, the better for breede:
more forward of growing, the better they speede.
¶ Of cow and sow.
Good milchcow, well fed, that is faire and sound,
is yeerely for profit as good as a pound:
And yet by the yeere, I haue prooued er[23] now,
as good to the purse is a sow as a cow.
[Pg 83]
Keepe one and keepe both, with as little a cost,
then all shall be saued and nothing be lost.
Both hauing togither what profit is caught,
good huswifes (I warrant ye) need not be taught.
For lamb, pig and calfe, and for other the like,
tithe so as thy cattle the Lord doo not strike.
Or if yee deale guilefully, parson will dreue,
and so to your selfe a worse turne ye may geue.
Thy garden plot latelie well trenched and muckt,
would now be twifallowd, the mallowes out pluckt,[25]
Well clensed and purged of roote and of stone,
that falt therein afterward found may be none.
Wéeding of hopyard.
Remember thy hopyard, if season be drie,
now dig it and weed it, and so let it lie.
More fennie the laier the better his lust,
more apt to beare hops when it crumbles like dust.
Trimming up arbors.
To arbor begun, and quick setted[26] about,
no poling nor wadling[27] till set be far out.
For rotten and aged may stand for a shew,
but hold to their tackling there doe but a few.[28][E182]
Sowing of otes. Late sowing not good.
In Janiuere[29] husband that poucheth the grotes
will break vp his laie, or be sowing of otes,
Otes sowen in Janiuere, laie[30] by the wheat,
in May by the hay for the cattle to eat.[31][E183]
[Pg 84]
Let seruant be readie, with mattock in hand,
to stub out the bushes that noieth the land:
And cumbersome rootes, so annoieng the plough,
turne vpward their arses with sorrow inough.
Breaking up lay in som countrie.
Who breaketh vp timelie his fallow or lay,
sets forward his husbandrie many a way.
This trimlie well ended doth forwardly bring,[32]
not onelie thy tillage, but all other thing.
Though lay land ye breke vp when Christmas is gon,
for sowing of barlie[34] or otes therevpon,
Yet hast[e] not to fallow til March be begun,
least afterward wishing it had ben vndun.
Such land as ye breake vp for barlie to sowe,
two earthes at the least er ye sowe it bestowe.[35]
If land be thereafter, set oting apart,
and follow this lesson, to comfort thine hart.
Some breaking vp laie soweth otes to begin,[36]
to suck out the moisture so sower therein.
Yet otes with hir sucking a peeler is found,
both ill to the maister and worse to som ground.
Land arable driuen or worne to the proofe,
and[37] craueth some rest for thy profits behoofe.
With otes ye may sowe it, the sooner to grasse,
more soone to be pasture to bring it to passe.
Thus endeth Januaries husbandrie.

[1] "Broath is still us'd in some Farm Houses for Supper Meat, and Roast Meat look'd upon as very ill Husbandry."—T.R.

[2] looke not for foyzen. 1577. "Foyzon is Winter Food."—T.R.

[3] "Pease boyling or not boyling is one of the Farmers occult Qualities; but fresh, and next to it, well dunged Grounds are observed to produce the best Boylers, perhaps because they retain most moisture."—T.R.

[4] "By Experience Garden Quicksets are found to be the best, ... because they are all of an age."—T.R.

[5] "The common time of ending their Slaught (or Slaughter as the Warreners term it) is Candlemas."—T.R.

[6] "The most forward Pea is the Rogue, they are pick'd from the Hasting and Hotspur."—T.R.

[7] "Since the use of Turneps Cattel need not be hard put to it in snowy weather as formerly."—T.R.

[8] "This is more proper in Underwood than Pollards, at least more in use at present; few Pollards perish for want of it, but Runt-wood will."—T.R.

[9] St. 16 is not in 1577.

[10] "Prime Grass appears commonly in woody moist Grounds, on Hedge Banks, and is so called from its earliness; when Cattle have tasted this they begin to loath their dry food. It is often sprung before Candlemas."—T.R.

[11] full a hand. 1577.

[12] "This remedy still is in Practice.... The first indication of corrupt blood is from the staring Hairs on the Tail near the Rump. Some instead of Soot and Garlick put a Dock Root, or the Root of a Bears Foot, which they call a Gargat Root, others flay the Dewlaps to the very Shoulders."—T.R.

[13] "Large Ant-Hills is much the best shelter for Ewes and Lambs."—T.R.

[14] "This is understood of Hedge Greens ... a space next the Hedge of a Rod or more in breadth."—T.R.

[15] make. 1577.

[16] "When you rid it of Bushes or Ant Hills."—T.R.

[17] with turnes so bye. 1577.

[18] "Hedge Greens."—T.R.

[19] "Likely, or thriving, such as will soon require more Milk than his old Dam can afford him."—T.R.

[20] "The first three days after the new moon or change."—T.R.

[21] "At present we rarely wean under twelve weeks."—- T.R. 1710.

[22] "The hay is given them stuck in cleft sticks."—T.R.

[23] or. 1577.

[24] St. 42 is not in 1577.

[25] "In trenching, bury no Mallow, Nettle-dock, or Briony Roots."—T.R.

[26] "Quick setted Arbors are now out of use, as agreeing very ill with the Ladies Muslins."—T.R. 1710.

[27] "Wattles are wood slit."—T.R.

[28] they cannot but feaw. 1577.

[29] January. 1577.

[30] "lay them by thy wheate" in 100 Good Points.

[31] "Such early sown Oats it is likely may be clearer of weeds; and if I buy my Hay in May, that is, before my Chapman knows what Quantity he shall have, he is rul'd by his Necessity for some ready money in Hand."—T.R.

[32] This tilth is a tilture, well forward doth bring. 1577.

[33] Sts. 49 and 50 are not in 1577.

[34] "Barley is now very rarely, if at all, sown on lay land. The fallow he speaks of I take to be the second ploughing for Barley."—T.R. 1710. Gervase Markham, in his English Husbandman, directs a digging in May, another, with manuring, in October, and "the last time of your digging and setting shall be at the beginning of April."

[35] "Barley-Ground ought to be as fine as an Ash-heap."—T.R.

[36] "Where the Ground is over rich, it fines and sweetens it."—T.R.

[37] "It" in Tusser Redivivus. "and." 1577.

[Pg 85]


Februaries abstract.

Chap. 33.

* * * Februaries Abstract and Februaries Husbandry in the edition of 1577 differ much from that of 1580.

Lay compas ynow,
er euer ye plow.
Place doongheapes alowe,
more barlie to growe.
Eat etch er ye plow,
with hog, shéepe and cow.
Sowe lintels ye may,
and peason gray.
Kéepe white vnsowne,
till more be knowne.
Sow pease (good trull)
the Moone past full.
Fine séedes then sowe,
whilst Moone doth growe.
Boy, follow the plough,
and harrow inough.
So harrow ye shall,
till couerd be all.
Sowe pease not too thin,
er plough ye set in.
Late sowen sore noieth,
late ripe, hog stroieth.
Some prouender saue,
for plowhorse to haue.
To oxen that drawe,
giue hay and not strawe.
To stéeres ye may
mixe strawe with hay.
Much carting, ill tillage,
makes som to flie village.
Use cattle aright,
to kéepe them in plight.
Good quickset bie,
old gatherd will die.
Stick bows a rowe,
where runciuals growe.
Sowe kirnels and hawe,
where ridge ye did drawe.
Sowe mustard séed,
and helpe to kill wéed.
Where sets doo growe,
sée nothing ye sowe.
[Pg 86]
Cut vines and osier,
plash hedge of enclosier.
Féed highly thy swan,
to loue hir good man.
Nest high I aduise,
least floud doe arise.
Land meadow spare,
there doong is good ware.
Go strike off the nowles
of deluing mowles.
Such hillocks in vaine
lay leauelled plaine.
To wet the land,
let mowle hill stand.
Poore cattle craue
some shift to haue.
Cow little giueth
that hardly liueth.
Rid barlie al now,
cleane out of thy mow.
Choice séed out drawe,
saue cattle the strawe.
To coast man ride
Lent stuffe to prouide.
Thus endeth Februaries abstract, agréeing with Februaries husbandrie.

¶ Other short remembrances.

Trench medow and redge,
dike, quickset, and hedge.
To plots not full,
ad bremble and hull.
Let wheat and the rie
for thresher still lie.
Such strawe some saue,
for thacker to haue.
Poore cunnie, so bagged,
is soone ouer lagged.
Plash burrow, set clapper,
for dog is a snapper.[E184]
Good flight who loues,
must féed their doues.
Bid hauking adew,
cast hauke into mew.[E185]
Kéepe shéepe out of briers,
kéepe beast out of miers.
Kéepe lambes from fox,
else shepherd go box.
Good neighbour mine,
now yoke thy swine.
Now euerie day,
set hops ye may.
Now set for thy pot,
best herbes to be got.
[Pg 87] For flowers go set,
all sorts ye can get.
As winter doth prooue,
so may ye remooue.
Now all things reare,
for all the yeare.
Watch ponds, go looke
to wéeles and hooke.
Knaues seld repent
to steale in Lent.
Alls fish they get
that commeth to net.[E186]
Who muck regards
makes hillocks in yards.
Here ends Februaries short remembrances.

[1] Stanza 12 is 4, and st. 22 is 1 in 1577.


Februaries husbandrie.

Chap. 34.

Feb, fill the dike[E187]
With what thou dost like.[1]
Forgotten month past
Doe now at the last.
Who laieth on doong er he laieth on plow,
such husbandrie vseth as thrift doth alow.
One month er ye spred it, so still let it stand,
er euer to plow it, ye take it in hand.
Place doong heape a low by the furrough along,
where water all winter time did it such wrong.
So make ye the land to be lustie and fat,
and corne thereon sowen to be better for that.
Go plow in the stubble, for now is the season,
for sowing of fitchis, of beanes, and of peason.
Sowe runciuals timelie, and all that be gray,
but sowe not the white till S. Gregories day.[2]
[Pg 88]
Sowe peason and beanes in the wane of the Moone,[3]
who soweth them sooner, he soweth too soone.
That they with the planet may rest and arise,
and flourish with bearing most plentifull wise.
Friend, harrow in time, by some maner of meanes,
not onely thy peason, but also thy beanes.
Unharrowed die, being buried in clay,
where harrowed florish, as flowers in May.
Both peason and beanes sowe afore ye doo plow,[4]
the sooner ye harrow, the better for yow.[5]
White peason so good for the purse and the pot:
let them be well vsed else well doo ye not.
Haue eie vnto haruest what euer ye sowe,
for feare of mischances, by riping too slowe.
Least corne be destroied, contrarie to right,
by hogs or by cattel, by day or by night.[6]
Good prouender labouring horses would haue,
good haie and good plentie, plow oxen doo craue.
To hale out the muck and to plow vp thy ground:
or else it may hinder thee many a pound.
Who slacketh his tillage, a carter to bee,
for grote got abrode, at home lose shall three.
And so by his dooing he brings out of hart
both land for the corne and horse for the cart.
[Pg 89]
Who abuseth his cattle and sterues them for meat,
by carting or plowing, his gaine is not great.
Where he that with labour can vse them aright,
hath gaine to his comfort, and cattle in plight.
Buie quickset at market, new gatherd and small,
buie bushes or willow, to fence it withall.
Set willowes to growe, in the steede of a stake,
for cattel in sommer, a shadow to make.
¶ Runciual peason.
Stick plentie of bows among runciuall pease[7]
to climber thereon, and to branch at their ease.
So dooing, more tender and greater they wex,
if peacock[8] and turkey leaue iobbing their bex.[E188]
Now sowe and go harrow (where redge ye did draw[9])
the seed of the bremble, with kernell and haw.
Which couered ouerlie, soone to shut out,
goe see it be ditched and fenced about.[E189]
Sowe mustard séede.
Where banks be amended and newly vp cast,
sow mustard seed,[10] after a shower be past.
Where plots full of nettles be noisome to eie,
sowe therevpon hempseed, and nettle will die.
Cut or set vines.
The vines[11] and the osiers cut and go set,
if grape be vnpleasant, a better go get.
Feed swan, and go make hir vp strongly a nest,
for feare of a floud, good and high is the best.
[Pg 90]
Catching of mowls.
Land meadow that yeerly is spared for hay,
now fence it and spare it, and doong it ye may.
Get mowle catcher cunninglie mowle for to kill,
and harrow and cast abrode euerie hill.[E190]
Where meadow or pasture to mowe ye doo laie,
let mowle be dispatched some maner of waie.
Then cast abrode mowlhill, as flat as ye can,
for many commodities following than.
If pasture by nature is giuen to be wet,
then bare with the mowlhill, though thick it be set.
That lambe may sit on it, and so to sit drie,
or else to lie by it, the warmer to lie.[E191]
Looke well to thy fence.
Friend, alway let this be a part of thy care,
for shift of good pasture, lay pasture to spare.
So haue you good feeding, in bushets and lease,[E192]
and quickly safe finding of cattel at ease.
Where cattel may run about, rouing at wil,
from pasture to pasture, poor bellie to fil,
There pasture and cattel both hungrie and bare,
for want of good husbandrie worser doo fare.
Now thresh out thy barlie, for malt or for seed,
for bread corne (if need be) to serue as shall need.
If worke for the thresher ye mind for to haue,
of wheat and of mestlen[E193] vnthreshed go saue.
Now timelie for Lent stuffe[12] thy monie disburse,
the longer ye tarie for profit the wurse,
If one penie vantage be therein to saue,
of coast man or fleming be sure to haue.[E194]
Thus endeth Februaries husbandrie.

[1] with what ye like. 1577.

[2] 12th of March.

[3] "Pease and Beans sown during the Increase do run more to Hawm or Straw, and during the Declension more to Cod, according to the common consent of country men. And I must own I have experienced it; but I will not aver it so as that it is not lyable to exceptions."—T.R.

[4] "This is called sowing under furrow, just before the second ploughing, which if neatly done lays them in rows."—T.R.

[5] "Because if they lye until they are swell'd the horse-footing is apt to endanger them."—T.R.

[6] "This regards Field Land; for in our Author's time Enclosures were not so frequent as now."—T.R. 1710.

[7] "Runcival pease find now very little Entertainment in Gentlemen's Gardens.... In their room are got the Egg pea, the Sugar pea, Dutch admirals, etc."—T.R., 1710.

[8] "A Peacock, altho' a lovely Fowl to look on, ... is a very ill-natured Bird."—T.R.

[9] "A way of quicksetting or fencing Enclosures out of the common Field they had in the days of our Author."—T.R.

[10] "This is most in practice in Marshy Countreys."—T.R.

[11] "Those that thrive best with us are the small black Grape, the white Muscadine, and the Parsley grape."—T.R.

[12] "This Article is very much unregarded by Farmers at present, for fear, I suppose, of falling into Popery and Superstition; but lay that quite aside, and let us consult our Interest, Health, and Gratitude."—T.R. The writer of Tusser Redivivus here enlarges on the advantages, personal and national, of fish diet. Under Marches Husbandry, stanza 3, he mentions "Salt Fish, Furmity, Gruel, Wigs, Milk, Parsnips, Hasty-pudding, Pancakes, and twice a week Eggs," as the Farmer's Lenten Diet.

[Pg 91]


Marches abstract.

Chap. 35.

White peason sowe,
scare hungry crow.
Spare meadow for hay,
spare marshes at May.
Kéepe shéepe from dog,
kéepe lambes from hog.
If foxes mowse[2] them,
then watch or howse them.
March drie or wet,
hop ground go set.
Yoong rootes well drest
prooue euer[3] best.
Grant hop great hill
to growe at will.
From hop long gut
away go cut.
Here learne the way
hop rootes to lay.
Rootes best to prooue,
thus set I looue.
Leaue space and roome,
to hillock to coome.
Of hedge and willow
hop makes his[4] pillow.
Good bearing hop
climes vp to the top.
Kéepe hop from sunne,
and hop is vndunne.
Hop tooles procure
that may endure.
Iron crowe like a stake,
déepe hole to make.
A scraper to pare
the earth about bare.
A hone to raise roote,
like sole of a boote.
Sharpe knife to cut
superfluous gut.
Who graffing looues,
now graffing prooues.
Of euerie suite,
graffe daintie fruite.
Graffe good fruite all,
or graffe not at all.
[Pg 92]
Graffe soone may be lost,
both grafting and cost.
Learne here[5] take héed
what counsell doth béed.[6]
Sowe barlie that can,
too soone ye shall ban.
Let horse kéepe his owne,
till barlie be sowne.
Sowe euen thy land,
with plentifull hand.
Sowe ouer and vnder,
in claie is no woonder.
By sowing in wet,
is little to get.
Straight folow the plough,
and harrow inough.
With sling go throwe,[8]
to scare away crowe.
Rowle after a deaw,
when barlie doth sheaw.
More handsom to make it,
to mowe and to rake it.
Learne here ye may
best harrowing way.
Now rowle thy wheat,
where clods be too great.
Make readie a plot,
for séeds for the pot.
Best searching minds
the best waie finds.
For garden best
is south southwest.
Good tilth brings séedes,
euill tilture, wéedes.
For sommer sowe now,
for winter sée how.
Learne time to knowe,
to set or sowe.[10]
Yoong plants soone die,
that growes too drie.
In countrie doth rest,
what season is best.
Good peason and léekes
makes pottage for créekes.
Haue spoone meat inough,
for cart and the plough.
Good poore mans fare,
is poore mans care.
And not to boast,
of sod and roast.
Cause rooke and rauen
to séeke a new hauen.
Thus endeth Marches abstract, agréeing with Marches husbandrie.

[Pg 93]

¶ Other short remembrances.

Geld lambes now all,
straight as they fall.
Looke twise a day,
least lambes decay.
Where horse did harrow,
put stones in barrow,
And[11] laie them by,
in heapes on by.
Let oxe once fat
lose nothing of that.
Now hunt with dog,
vnyoked hog.
With Doues good luck,
reare[12] goose and duck.
To spare aright
spare March his flight.

The following additional couplets are in 1577.

Saue chikins poore buttocks
from pye, crowe, & puttocks.
Some loue now best
yong rabbets nest.
Now knaues will steale
pig, lamb, and veale.
Here learne to knowe
what seedes to sowe.
And such to plant
whose seedes do want.

[1] St. 3, first couplet,

What champion useth
woodland refuseth. 1577.

[2] mouth them. 1573 (M.); mowse. 1577.

[3] the. 1573, 1577.

[4] her. 1577.

[5] to. 1577.

[6] bid, 1577; beed, 1585; breed, 1614.

[7] St. 13 is not in 1577.

[8] sling or bowe. 1577.

[9] Stanzas 17, 26, and first couplet of 27 are not in 1577.

[10] Lines transposed in 1577.

[11] or. 1577.

[12] hen. 1577.


Seedes and herbes for the Kitchen.

  1. Auens.[E195]
  2. Betanie.[E196]
  3. Bléets or béets,[E197] white or yellow.
  4. Bloodwoort[E198] [Bloodwoorth, 1577].
  5. Buglas.[E199]
  6. Burnet.[E200]
  7. Burrage.[E201]
  8. Cabage remoue in June.
  9. Clarie.[E202]
  10. Coleworts.[E203]
  11. Cresses.
  12. Endiue.
  13. Fenell.[E204]
  14. French Malows.
  15. French Saffron set in August.
  16. Langdebiefe.[E205]
  17. Léekes[E206] remoue in June.
  18. Lettis remoue in May.
  19. Longwort.[E207]
  20. Liuerwort.[E208]
  21. Marigolds[E209] often cut.
  22. Mercurie.[E210]
  23. Mints at all times.
  24. Nep.[E211]
  25. Onions [Oyneons, 1577] from December to March.
  26. Orach[E212] or arach, redde and white.
  27. Patience.[E213]
  28. [Pg 94]Perceley.
  29. Peneriall.[E214]
  30. Primerose.[E215]
  31. Poret.
  32. Rosemary[E216] in the spring time [to growe south or west].[1]
  33. Sage red and white.
  34. [English][2] Saffron[E217] set in August.
  35. Summer sauerie.
  36. Sorell.
  37. Spinage.[E218]
  38. Suckerie.
  39. Siethes.[E219]
  40. Tanzie.[E220]
  41. Time.
  42. Violets of all sorts.
  43. Winter sauerie.

[1] Omitted in 1577.

[2] Omitted in 1577.


Herbes and rootes for sallets and sauce.

  1. Alexanders, at all times.
  2. Artichoks.
  3. Blessed thistle,[E221] or Carduus benedictus.
  4. Cucumbers in April and May.
  5. Cresies, sowe with Lettice in the spring.
  6. Endiue.
  7. Mustard séede, sowe in the spring and at Mihelmas.
  8. Musk million, in April and May.
  9. Mints.
  10. Purslane.[E222]
  11. Radish, and after remoue them.
  12. Rampions.[E223]
  13. Rokat,[E224] in April.
  14. Sage.[E225]
  15. Sorell.
  16. Spinage, for the sommer.
  17. Sea holie.[E226]
  18. Sperage, let growe two yeares, and then remoue.
  19. Skirrets, set these plants in March.
  20. Suckerie.
  21. Tarragon, set in slippes in March.[1]
  22. Violets [of all coulors].[2]
These buie with the penie,
Or looke not for anie.
  1. Capers.
  2. Lemmans.
  3. Oliues.
  4. Orengis.
  5. Rise.
  6. Sampire.[E227]

[1] Tarragon, April, 1577.

[2] Omitted in 1577.

[Pg 95]


Herbes and rootes to boile or to butter.

  1. Beanes, set in winter.
  2. Cabbegis,[E228] sowe in March, and after remooue.
  3. Carrets.
  4. Citrons,[E229] sowe in May.
  5. Goordes in May.
  6. Nauewes sowe in June.
  7. Pompions in May.
  8. Perseneps in winter.
  9. Runciuall pease set in winter.
  10. Rapes sowe in June.
  11. Turneps in March & April.


Strowing herbes of all sortes.

  1. Bassel,[E230] fine and busht, sowe in May.
  2. Baulme, set in March.
  3. Camamel.
  4. Costmarie.[E231]
  5. Cousleps and paggles.[E232]
  6. Daisies of all sorts.
  7. Swéete fennell.
  8. Garmander.[E233]
  9. Isop, set in Februarie.
  10. Lauender.
  11. Lauender spike.
  12. Lauender cotten.[E234]
  13. Maierom knotted, sowe or set at the spring.
  14. Mawdelin.[E235]
  15. Penal riall.
  16. Roses of all sorts, in Januarie and September.
  17. Red mints.
  18. Sage.
  19. Tanzie.
  20. Violets.
  21. Winter sauerie.


Herbes, branches, and flowers, for windowes and pots.

  1. Baies,[E236] sowe or set in plants in Januarie.
  2. Batchelers buttons.[E237]
  3. Botles, blew, red, and tawnie.
  4. Collembines.[E238].
  5. Campions.
  6. Cousleps.[1]
  7. Daffadondillies.[E239]
  8. Eglantine,[E240] or swéet brier.
  9. Fetherfew.[E241]
  10. Flower armor[2][E242] sowe in May.
  11. Flower de luce.[E243]
  12. Flower gentle,[E244] white and red.
  13. Flower nice.[Pg 96]
  14. Gileflowers,[E245] red white and carnations, set in spring, and at Haruest in pots, pailes or tubs, or for sommer in beds.
  15. Holiokes,[E246] red, white and carnations.
  16. Indian eie,[E247] sowe in May, or set in slips in March.
  17. Lauender of all sorts.
  18. Larkes foot.
  19. Laus tibi.[E248]
  20. Lillium cum valium.[3][E249]
  21. Lillies, red and white, sowe or set in March and September.
  22. Marigolds double.
  23. Nigella Romana.[E250]
  24. Pauncies or hartesease.[E251]
  25. Paggles, gréene and yelow.
  26. Pinkes of all sorts.
  27. Quéenes gilleflowers.
  28. Rosemarie.
  29. Roses of all sorts.
  30. Snag dragons.[4]
  31. Sops in wine.[E252]
  32. Swéete Williams.[E253]
  33. Swéete Johns.[E254]
  34. Star of Bethelem.
  35. Star of Jerusalem.[E255]
  36. Stocke gilleflowers of all sorts.
  37. Tuft gilleflowers.[E256]
  38. Veluet flowers,[E257] or french Marigolds.
  39. Violets, yellow and white.
  40. Wall gilleflowers of all sorts.

[1] Omitted in 1577.

[2] armour. 1577; amour. 1614.

[3] convallium. 1617

[4] Snap dragons. 1577.


Herbes to still in Sommer.

  1. Blessed thistle.
  2. Betanie [Betonye, 1577].
  3. Dill.
  4. Endiue.
  5. Eiebright.[E258]
  6. Fennell.
  7. Fumetorie.[E259]
  8. Isop.
  9. Mints.
  10. Plantine.
  11. Roses red and damaske.
  12. Respies.
  13. Saxefrage.
  14. Strawberies.
  15. Sorell.
  16. Suckerie.
  17. Woodrofe[E260] for swéete waters and cakes.


Necessarie herbes to growe in the garden for Physick, not rehersed before.

  1. Annis.
  2. Archangel.[E261]
  3. [Pg 97]Betanie.
  4. Charuiel.
  5. Cinqfile.
  6. Cummin.[E262]
  7. Dragons.
  8. Detanie,[1][E263] or garden ginger.
  9. Gromel[E264] séed, for the stone.
  10. Hartstong.
  11. Horehound.
  12. Louage[E265] for the stone.
  13. Licoras.
  14. Mandrake.[E266]
  15. Mogwort[E267] [Mogworth, 1577].
  16. Pionées.
  17. Poppie.
  18. Rew.[E268]
  19. Rubarb.
  20. Smalach, for swellings.
  21. Saxefrage, for the stone.
  22. Sauin, for the bots.[E269]
  23. Stitchwort.[E270]
  24. Valerian.
  25. Woodbine.[E271]
Thus ends in bréefe,
Of herbes the chéefe,
To get more skill,
Read whom ye will,
Such mo to haue,
Of field go craue.

[1] Betany, in 1577. Thus mistakes in synonyms arise.


Marches husbandrie.

Chap. 36.

March dust to be sold,
Worth ransome of gold.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
[Sowing of white peason. 1577.]
White peason, both good for the pot and the purse,[1]
by sowing too timelie, prooue often the wurse.
Bicause they be tender and hateth the cold,
prooue March er ye sowe them, for being too bold.
Spare eating of meadowe.
Spare meadow at Gregorie,[E272] marshes at Pask,
for feare of drie Sommer, no longer time ask.
Then hedge them and ditch them, bestow thereon pence:
corne, meadow and pasture, aske alway good fence.
[Pg 98]
In Lent haue an ey to shéep biters.
Of mastiues and mungrels,[E273] that manie we see,
a number of thousands too manie there bee.
Watch therefore in Lent, to thy sheepe go and looke,
for dogs will haue vittles,[2] by hooke or by crooke.[E274]
Setting of hops.
In March at the furdest, drie season or wet,
hop rootes so well chosen, let skilfull go set.
The goeler[3] and yonger the better I loue;
well gutted[4] and pared, the better they proue.
Some laieth them croswise, along in the ground,
as high as the knee they doo couer vp round.
Some prick vp a stick in the mids of the same,
that little round hillock the better to frame.
Some maketh a hollownes, halfe a foot deepe,
with fower sets in it, set slant wise a steepe:
One foot from another, in order to lie,
and thereon a hillock, as round as a pie.
Five foot from another ech hillock would stand,
as straight as a leaueled line with the hand.
Let euerie hillock be fower foot wide,
the better to come to on euerie side.
By willowes[E275] that groweth thy hopyard without,
and also by hedges thy meadowes about.
Good hop hath a pleasure to climbe and to spred,
if Sunne may haue passage to comfort hir bed.
Hop tools.
Get crowe made of iron, deepe hole for to make,
with crosse ouerthwart it, as sharpe as a stake.
A hone[5] and a parer, like sole of a boote,[6]
to pare away grasse and to raise vp the roote.
[Pg 99]
In March is good grafting, the skilfull doo knowe,
so long as the wind in the East doo not blowe.
From Moone being changed til past be the prime,[7]
for grafting and cropping is verie good time.
Things graffed or planted,[8] the greatest and least,
defend against tempest, the bird[9] and the beast.
Defended shall prosper, the tother is lost,
the thing with the labour, the time and the cost.
Sowing of barlie.
Sowe barlie in March, in April and Maie,
the latter[10] in sand, and the sooner in claie.[11]
What worser for barlie than wetnes and cold?
what better to skilfull than time to be bold?[E276]
Who soweth his barlie too soone or in raine,
of otes[13] and of thistles shall after complaine.
I speake not of Maie weed,[E277] cockle[E278] and such,
that noieth the barlie, so often and much.
Let barlie be harrowed, finelie as dust,
then workmanly trench it and fence it ye must.
This season well plied, set sowing an end,
and praise and praie God a good haruest to send.
Rowling of barlie.
Some rowleth their barlie straight after a raine,
when first it appeareth to leauell it plaine.
The barlie so vsed, the better doth growe,
and handsome ye make it at haruest to mowe.
[Pg 100]
Otes, barlie and pease, harrow after you sowe,[14]
for rie harrow first, as alreadie ye knowe.[E279]
Leaue wheat little clod, for to couer the head,
that after a frost, it may out and go spread.
If clod in thy wheat wil not breake with the frost,
if now ye doo rowle it, it quiteth the cost.
But see when ye rowle it, the weather be drie,
or else it were better vnrowled to lie.
¶ Gardening.
In March and in April,[16] from morning to night,
in sowing and setting, good huswiues delight:
To haue in a garden, or other like plot,
to turn vp their house, and to furnish their pot.
The nature of flowers dame Physick doth shew,
she teacheth them all to be knowne to a few.
To set or to sowe, or else sowne to remoue,
how that should be practised, learne if ye loue.
To know good land.
Land falling or lieng full South or southwest,
for profit by tillage is lightly the best.
So garden with orchard and hopyard I finde,
that want the like benefit, growe out of kinde.
If field to beare corne a good tillage doth craue,
what thinke ye of garden, what garden would haue?
In field without cost[E280] be assured of weedes,
in garden be suer thou loosest thy seedes.
At spring (for the sommer) sowe garden ye shall,
at haruest (for winter) or sowe not at all.
Oft digging, remoouing, and weeding (ye see),
makes herbe the more holesome and greater to bee.
[Pg 101]
Time faire, to sowe or to gather be bold,
but set or remooue when the weather is cold.[17]
Cut all thing or gather, the Moone in the wane,
but sowe in encreasing, or giue it his bane.
Now set doo aske watering with pot or with dish,
new sowne doo not so, if ye doo as I wish.[E281]
Through cunning with dible, rake, mattock, and spade,
by line and by leauell, trim garden is made.
Who soweth too lateward, hath seldome good seed,
who soweth too soone, little better shall speed.
Apt time and the season so diuers to hit,
let aier and laier[18] helpe practise and wit.
Now leekes are in season, for pottage full good,
and spareth the milchcow and purgeth the blood.
These hauing, with peason for pottage in Lent,
thou sparest both otemell and bread to be spent.[E282]
Though neuer so much a good huswife doth care,
that such as doe labour haue husbandlie fare.
Yet feed them and cram them til purse doe lack chinke,
no spoone meat, no bellifull, labourers thinke.
Destroie pie, rooks, and rauens nest, etc.
Kill crowe, pie and cadow, rooke, buzard and rauen,
or else go desire them to seeke a new hauen.
In scaling the yoongest, to pluck off his beck,
beware how ye climber, for breaking your neck.
Thus endeth Marches husbandrie.

[1] "The Retailer now sells them for 2¾d. the Quart."—T.R. 1710.

[2] In Lent, dog's meat was scarce, and "a mort Lamb now and then was very apt to whet their appetite for Mutton."—T.R.

[3] goeler. 1577. goodlier. 1614. "The goeler is the yellower, which are the best setts, old roots being red."—T.R.

[4] "Well taken off from the old Roots."—T.R.

[5] "A common Rubber or Whetstone."—T.R.

[6] "The best, in my minde, are those triangular ones used by the Fen men and Bankers."—T.R. 1710.

[7] cf. ante, ch. 36, st. 4.

[8] plainted. 1577.

[9] "That impudent bird, a Tomtit, is not easily frighted."—T.R.

[10] "later."—T.R.

[11] "Barley is rarely sown in Clay, at present."—T.R. 1710.

[12] St. 13 is not in 1577.

[13] Gervase Markham says: "You shall take care that in your seede Barly there be not any Oates, for although they be in this case amongst Husbandmen accounted the best of weede, yet are they such a disgrace," etc.; ... and he adds that "some grounds will ... bring forth naturally a certaine kinde of wilde Oates."—English Husbandman, Pt. I. ch. v.

[14] "That is, in our Countryman's Phrase, ... above furrow, that is upon land after the last ploughing."—T.R. Cf. ante, ch. 37, st. 6.

[15] St. 17 is not in 1577.

[16] In March, April, and May. 1577.

[17] "There is an old Sawe to this purpose:

'In Gard'ning never this Rule forget,
To Sow dry, and Set wet.'"—T.R.

[18] "By Aier I understand Situation, Weather, etc.... By Laier, Composition, the Nature of the Soil, Heart of the Land, etc."—T.R.

[19] Sts. 26 and 27 are not in 1577; but instead—

Good peason and leekes, to make porredge in lent,
and pescods in July, saue fish to be spent.
Those hauing with other things plentifull than,
thou winnest the hart of the labouring man.

[Pg 102]


Aprils abstract.

Chap. 37.

Some champions laie
to fallow in Maie.
When tilth plows breake,
poore cattle cries creake.
One daie er ye plow,
spred compas ynow.
Some fodder buieth,
in fen where it lieth.
Thou champion wight,
haue cow meat for night.
Set hop his pole,
make déepe the hole.
First, bark go and sell,
er timber ye fell.
Fence copie in,
er heawers begin.
The straightest ye knowe,
for staddles let growe.
Crab trée preserue,
for plough to serue.
Get timber out,
er yéere go about.
Som cuntries lack plowmeat,
and som doe want cowmeat.
Small commons and bare,
yéelds cattell ill fare.
Som common with géese,
and shéepe without fléese.
Som tits thither bring,
and hogs without ring.
Some champions agrée
as waspe doth with bée.
[Pg 103]
Get swineherd for hog,
but kill not with dog.
Wher swineherd doth lack,
corne goeth to wrack.
All goes to the Deuill,
where shepherd is euill.
Come home from land,
with stone in hand.
Man cow prouides,
Wife dairie guides.
Slut Cisley vntaught
hath whitemeat[E283] naught.
Some bringeth in gaines,
some losse beside paines.
Run Cisse, fault known,[2]
with more than thine own,
Such Mistris, such Nan,
such Maister, such Man.
Thus endeth Aprils abstract, agréeing with Aprils husbandrie.

* * * In 1577 st. 11 is followed by sts. 20, 21, 22; then follows—

Such Mistres such Nan,
such master such man.
By such ill gestes,
poore Cis il restes.
Such fautes as thease
good dame will ease.
These faultes all ten,
abhorreth all men.
A warning for Cysse
for doing amysse.

[1] Sts. 1-5 are not in 1577.

[2] cf. post, ch. 48, st. 21.


Aprils husbandrie.

Chap. 38.

Swéete April showers,
Doo spring Maie flowers.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
In Cambridge shire forward to Lincolne shire way,
the champion maketh his fallow in May.
Then thinking so dooing one tillage woorth twaine,
by forcing of weede, by that meanes to refraine.
[Pg 104]
If April be dripping, then doo I not hate,
(for him that hath little) his fallowing late,
Else otherwise fallowing timelie is best,
for sauing of cattel, of plough and the rest.
Be suer of plough to be readie at hand,
er compas ye spred that on hillocks did stand:
Least drieing so lieing, doo make it decaie,
er euer much water doo wash it awaie.
Looke now to prouide ye of meadow for hay,
if fennes be vndrowned, there cheapest ye may.[2]
In fen for the bullock, for horse not so well,
count best the best cheape,[E284] wheresoeuer ye dwell.
Prouide ye of cowmeate, for cattel at night,
and chiefly where commons lie far out of sight:
Where cattel lie tied without any meat,
that profit by dairie can neuer be great.
Put poles to your hophils.
Get into thy hopyard with plentie of poles,
amongst those same hillocks deuide them by doles.
Three poles to a hillock[3] (I pas not how long)[4]
shall yeeld thee more profit, set deeplie and strong.
Felling of timber.
Sell barke to the tanner er timber yee fell,
cut lowe by the ground[5] or else doo ye not well.
In breaking[6] saue crooked, for mill and for ships,
and euer in hewing saue carpenters chips.[E285]
[Pg 105]
First see it well fenced er hewers begin,
then see it well stadled,[7][E286] without and within;
Thus being preserued and husbandlie donne,
shall sooner raise profit, to thee or thy sonne.
Stadling of woods.
Leaue growing for stadles the likest and best,
though seller and buier dispatched the rest.
In bushes, in hedgerowe, in groue, and in wood,
this lesson obserued is needfull and good.
Saue elme, ash and crabtree, for cart and for plough,
saue step for a stile, of the crotch of the bough.
Saue hazel for forks, saue sallow for rake,
saue huluer[8] and thorne, thereof flaile for to make.
Discharge thy woods.
Make riddance of carriage, er yeere go about,
for spoiling of plant that is newlie come out.
To carter (with oxen) this message I bring,
leaue oxen abrode[9] for anoieng the spring.[E287]
Allowance of fodder some countries doo yeeld,
as good for the cattel as haie in the feeld.
Some mowe vp their hedlonds[11] and plots among corne,
and driuen to leaue nothing, vnmowne, or vnshorne.
Some commons are barren, the nature is such,
and some ouer laieth the common too much.
The pestered commons small profit doth geeue,
and profit as little some reape I beleeue.
[Pg 106]
Some pester the commons, with iades and with geese,
with hog without ring and with sheepe without fleese.
Some lose a daie labour with seeking their owne,
some meet with a bootie they would not haue knowne.[E288]
Great troubles and losses the champion sees,[12]
and euer in brauling, as wasps among bees:
As charitie that waie appeereth but small,
so lesse be their winnings, or nothing at all.
Where champion wanteth[E289] a swineherd for hog,
there many complaineth of naughtie mans dog.
Where ech his owne keeper appoints without care,
there corne is destroied er men be aware.
The land is well harted with helpe of the fold,
for one or two crops, if so long it will hold.
If shepherd would keepe them from stroieng of corne,
the walke of his sheepe might the better be borne.
Where stones be too manie, annoieng thy land,
make seruant come home with a stone in his hand.
By daily so dooing, haue plentie yee shall,
both handsome for pauing and good for a wall.
¶ Dairie matters.
From April beginning, till Andrew be past,
so long with good huswife, hir dairie doth last.
Good milchcow and pasture, good husbands prouide,
the resdue good huswiues knowes best how to guide.
¶ Ill huswiferie.
Ill huswife vnskilful to make hir owne chees,
through trusting of others hath this for hir fees.
Her milke pan and creame pot, so slabbered and sost,
that butter is wanting and cheese is halfe lost.
[Pg 107]
Where some of a cow doo raise yeerelie a pound,
with such seelie huswiues no penie is found.
Then dairie maid (Cisley) hir fault being knowne,
away apace trudgeth, with more than hir owne.
¶ Ill huswiues saiengs.
Then neighbour, for Gods sake, if any you see,
good seruant for dairie house, waine[13] her to mee.[E290]
Such maister such man,[E291] and such mistris such maid,
such husband and huswife, such houses araid.[14]

[1] Sts. 1-5 are not in 1577.

[2] "Now ye may see what medows are well laid up, and what not, and accordingly chuse your ground."—T.R.

[3] "I suppose in our Author's time they made the Hills less than they do now."—T.R. 1710.

[4] "Overpoling (especially in height) is worse than underpoling."—T.R.

[5] "Six inches at the but may be more worth than two foot in another part."—T.R.

[6] "Sawing out; it being called breaking-up by workmen in those parts near where our Author lived."—T.R.

[7] "To stadle a Wood is to leave at certain distances a sufficient number of young Trees to replenish it."—T.R.

[8] "or Holly ... heavy enough for flail swingels."—T.R.

[9] T.R. reads "leave not oxe abroad," and explains spring to mean the young buds of felled underwood.

[10] Sts. 12 to 18 are not in 1577.

[11] "The laying of headlands for grass is frequently used in Norfolk to this day."—T.R. 1710.

[12] "Our Author liv'd in the Reigns of King Henry the Eighth, King Edward the Sixth, Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth: during which time there were several commotions about the taking in of Common Field Land.... The greatest part of the privileges of Common Fields, etc., are but so many privileges to wrong and quarrel with their neighbours."—T.R.

[13] waynes, 1573 (M.); wayne. 1577

[14] and house is araid. 1573 (M.); "such houses arayde." 1577.


A lesson for dairie maid Cisley, of ten toppings gests.[E292]

As wife that will
good husband plese,
Must shun with skill
such gests as these.
So Cisse that serues
must marke this note,
What fault deserues
a brushed cote.
¶ Ten toppings gests vnsent for.
Gehezie, Lots wife, and Argusses eies,[E293]
Tom piper, poore Cobler, and Lazarus thies,
Rough Esau, with Mawdlin, and Gentils that scrall,
With Bishop that burneth, thus knowe ye them all.[1]
These toppingly gests be in number but ten,
As welcome in dairie as Beares among men.
Which being descried, take heede of[2] you shall,
For danger of after claps, after that fall.
[Pg 108]
¶ White and drie.
Gehezie his sicknes was whitish and drie,
such cheeses, good Cisley, ye floted[3] too nie.[E294]
Too salt.
Leaue Lot with her piller (good Cisley) alone,
much saltnes in whitemeat is ill for the stone.
Full of eies.
If cheeses in dairie haue Argusses eies,
tell Cisley the fault in hir huswiferie lies.[4][E295]
Tom Piper hath houen and puffed vp cheekes,
if cheese be so houen, make Cisse to seeke creekes.[E296]
Poore Cobler he tuggeth his leatherlie trash,
if cheese abide tugging, tug Cisley a crash.[E297]
Full of spots.
If Lazer[5] so lothsome in cheese be espied,
let baies amend Cisley, or shift hir aside.[E298]
Full of heares.
Rough Esau was hearie from top to the fut,
if cheese so appeareth, call Cisley a slut.[E299]
Full of whey.
As Mawdlin wept, so would Cisley be drest,
for whey in hir cheeses, not halfe inough prest.
Full of gentils.
If gentils be scrauling, call magget the py,[E300]
if cheeses haue gentils, at Cisse by and by.
Burnt to the pan.
Blesse Cisley (good mistris) that Bishop doth ban
for burning the milke of hir cheese to the pan.[E301]
If thou (so oft beaten)[6]
Amendest by this:
I will no more threaten,
I promise thee Cis.
Thus dairie maid Cisley, rehearsed ye see,
what faults with ill huswife, in dairie house bee.
Of market abhorred, to houshold a griefe,
to maister and mistris, as ill as a thiefe.
Thus endeth Aprils husbandrie.

[1] With bishop that turneth and burneth up all. 1573 (M.) and 1577.

[2] if. 1577.

[3] "Floting is taking off the Cream."—T.R.

[4] "Because she did not work the Curd well together."—T.R.

[5] "An inner corruption.... Chiefly occasioned from their using milk soon after calving."—T.R.


Amend so oft beaten
for doing amisse. 1577.

[Pg 109]


Maies abstract.

Chap. 39.

Put lambe from eawe,
to milke a feawe.
Be not too bold,
to milke and to fold.
Fiue eawes alow,
to euerie cow.
Shéepe wrigling taile
hath mads without faile.
Beat hard in the réede
where house hath néede.
Leaue cropping from May
to Mihelmas day.
Let Iuie be killed,
else trée will be spilled.
Now threshers warne
to rid the barne.
Be suer of hay
till thend of May.
Let shéepe fill flanke,
where corne is too ranke.
In woodland leuer,[1]
in champion neuer.
To wéeding away,
as soone as yée may.
For corne here réede,[E302]
what naughtie wéede.
Who wéeding slacketh,
good husbandrie lacketh.
Sowe buck or branke,
that smels so ranke.
Thy branke go and sowe,
where barlie did growe.
The next crop wheat
is husbandrie neat.
Sowe pescods some,
for haruest to come.
Sowe hemp and flacks,
that spinning lacks.
Teach hop to clime,
for now it is time.
Through fowles & wéedes
poore hop ill spéedes.
Cut off or crop
superfluous hop:
The titters or tine
makes hop to pine.[2]
Some raketh their wheat,
with rake that is great.
So titters and tine
be gotten out fine.
[Pg 110]
Now[3] sets doe craue
some wéeding to haue.
Now draine as ye like
both fen and dike.
Watch bées in May,
for swarming away.
Both now and in June,
marke maister bées tune.
Twifallow thy land,
least plough else stand.
No longer tarrie,
out compas to carrie.
Where néede doth pray it,
there sée ye lay it.
Set Jack and Jone
to gather vp stone.
To grasse with thy calues,
take nothing to halues.[E303]
Be suer thy neat
haue water and meat.
By tainting of ground,
destruction is found.
Now carrege get
home fewell to fet.
Tell fagot and billet
for filching gillet.[E304]
In sommer for firing
let citie be buying.
Marke colliers packing
least coles be lacking.
(Sée opened sack)
for two in a pack.
Let nodding patch
go sléepe a snatch.
Wife as[4] you will,
now plie your still.
Fine bazell[5] sowe,
in a pot to growe.
Fine séedes sowe now,
before ye sawe how.
Kéepe ox from cow,
for causes ynow.
Thus endeth Maies abstract, agréeing with Maies husbandrie.

¶ Two other short remembrances.

From bull cow fast
till Crowchmas[6] be past.
From heifer bul hid thée
till Lammas[7] doth bid thée.
Here ends Maies short remembrances.

* * * Sts. 14, 15, 19, are not in 1577.

[1] euer. 1577.

[2] now take out fine. 1577.

[3] New. 1577.

[4] yf. 1577.

[5] Bezell. 1577.

[6] Saint Helens daie (side note).

[7] August (side note).

[Pg 111]


Maies husbandrie.

Chap. 40.

Cold Maie and windie,
Barne filleth vp finelie.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Essex and Suffolke.
At Philip and Jacob,[E305] away with the lams
that thinkest to haue any milke of their dams.
At Lammas leaue milking, for feare of a thing:
least (requiem æternam) in winter they sing.
Milking of eawes.
To milke and to fold them is much to require,
except yee haue pasture to fil their desire.
Yet manie by milking (such heede they doo take),
not hurting their bodies much profit doo make.
Fiue eawes to a cow, make a proofe by a score,
shall double thy dairie, else trust me no more.
Yet may a good huswife that knoweth the skill,
haue mixt and vnmixt at hir pleasure and will.
If sheepe or thy lambe fall a wrigling with taile,
go by and by search it, whiles helpe may preuaile:
That barberlie handled[E306] I dare thee assure,
cast dust in his arse, thou hast finisht thy cure.
Where houses be reeded[1] (as houses haue neede),
now pare off the mosse, and go beat in the reed.
The iuster ye driue it, the smoother and plaine,
more handsome ye make it to shut off the raine.
Leaue off cropping.
Destroie Iuie.
From Maie til October leaue cropping, for why?
in wood sere, whatsoeuer thou croppest wil dy.
Where Iuie imbraceth the tree verie sore,
kill Iuie, or else tree wil addle no more.[E307]
[Pg 112]
Keepe threshing for thresher, til Maie be come in,
to haue to be suer fresh chaffe in the bin.
And somewhat to scamble, for hog and for hen,
and worke when it raineth for loitering men.[E308]
Count store no sore.
Be sure of haie and of prouender some,
for labouring cattel til pasture be come.
And if ye doo mind to haue nothing to sterue,
haue one thing or other, for all thing to serue.
Ground compassed wel and a following[2] yeare,
(if wheat or thy barlie too ranke doo appeare)
Now eat it with sheepe or else mowe it ye may,
for ledging, and so, to the birds for a pray.
¶ Wéeding.
In Maie get a weede hooke, a crotch and a gloue,[E309]
and weed out such weedes as the corne doth not loue:
For weeding of winter corne now it is best,
but June is the better for weeding the rest.
Ill wéeds.
The May weed doth burn[E310] and the thistle doth freat,[E311]
the fitchis[3] pul downward,[E312] both rie and the wheat.
The brake and the cockle[E313] be noisome too much,
yet like vnto boddle[E314] no weede there is such.
Slack neuer thy weeding, for dearth nor for cheape,
the corne shall reward it er euer ye reape.
And specially where ye doo trust for to seede,[4]
let that be well vsed, the better to speede.
Sowing of branke.
In Maie is good sowing, thy buck[E315] or thy branke,[E316]
that black is as pepper, and smelleth so ranke.
It is to thy land, as a comfort or muck,
and al thing it maketh as fat as a buck.
[Pg 113]
Sowe buck after barlie, or after thy wheat,
a peck to a roode (if the measure be great);
Three earthes see ye giue it, and sowe it aboue,
and harrow it finelie if buck ye doo loue.
Who pescods would gather, to haue with the last,
to serue for his houshold till haruest be past,
Must sowe them in Maie, in a corner ye shal,
where through so late growing no hindrance may fal.[E317]
¶ Sowing of flax and hempe.
Good flax and good hemp for to haue of hir owne,
in Maie a good huswife will see it be sowne.
And afterward trim it, to serue at a neede,
the fimble to spin and the karl for hir seede.[E318]
Get into the hopyard, for now it is time,[6]
to teach Robin hop on his pole how to clime:
To follow the Sunne, as his propertie is,[E319]
and weede him and trim him, if aught go amis.
Ill neighbours to the hop.
Grasse, thistle and mustard seede, hemlock and bur,
tine, mallow and nettle, that keepe such a stur.
With peacock and turkie, that nibbles off top,
are verie ill neighbors to seelie poore hop.
From wheat go and rake out the titters or tine,
if eare be not foorth, it will rise againe fine.
Use now in thy rie, little raking or none,
breake tine[7] from his roote, and so let it alone.[E320]
Wéeding of quickset.
Bankes newly quicksetted, some weeding doo craue,
the kindlier nourishment thereby to haue.
Then after a shower to weeding a snatch,
more easilie weede with the roote to dispatch.
[Pg 114]
Now draine ditches.
The fen and the quamire,[8][E321] so marrish be kind,
and are to be drained, now wine to thy mind:
Which yeerelie vndrained and suffered vncut,
annoieth the meadowes that thereon doo but.
¶ Swarming of bées.
Take heede to thy bees, that are readie to swarme,
the losse thereof now is a crownes worth of harme:[9]
Let skilfull be readie and diligence seene,
least being too careles, thou losest thy beene.
In Maie at the furthest, twifallow thy land,
much drout may else after cause plough for to stand:
This tilth being done, ye haue passed the wurst,
then after who ploweth, plow thou with the furst.
Carie out compas.
Twifallow once ended, get tumbrell and man,
and compas that fallow as soone as ye can.
Let skilfull bestow it, where neede is vpon,
more profit the sooner to follow[10] thereon.
Hide hedlonds with muck, if ye will to the knees,
so dripped and shadowd with bushes and trees:[E322]
Bare plots full of galles,[11] if ye plow ouerthwart,
and compas it then, is a husbandlie part.
Let children be hired, to lay to their bones,
from fallow as needeth to gather vp stones.
What wisedome for profit aduiseth vnto,
that husband and huswife must willingly do.
Forth to grasse with thy calues.
To gras with thy calues in some medow plot nere,
where neither their mothers may see them nor here.
Where water is plentie and barth to sit warme,
and looke well vnto them, for taking of harme.
[Pg 115]
Let not cattel want water.
Pinch neuer thy wennels of water or meat,
if euer ye hope for to haue them good neat:
In Sommer time dailie, in Winter in frost,
if cattel lack drinke, they be vtterly lost.
Ouerlay not thy pastures.
For coueting much ouerlay not thy ground,
and then shall thy cattel be lustie and sound.
But pinch them of pasture, while Sommer doth last,
and lift at their tailes er an Winter be past.[E323]
Get home thy fewel.
Get home with thy fewell, made readie to fet,
the sooner the easier carrege to get:
Or otherwise linger the carrege thereon,
till (where as ye left it) a quarter be gon.
Husbandrie for Citizens.
His firing in Sommer, let Citizen buie,
least buieng in Winter make purse for to crie.
For carman and collier harps both on a string,
in Winter they cast to be with thee to bring.[12]
Sléeping time.[E324]
From Maie to mid August, an hower or two,
let patch[E325] sleepe a snatch, how soeuer ye do,
Though sleeping one hower refresheth his song,
yet trust not hob growthed[E326] for sleeping too long.
¶ Stilling of herbes.
The knowledge of stilling is one pretie feat,
The waters be holesome, the charges not great.[E327]
What timelie thou gettest, while Sommer doth last,
thinke Winter will helpe thee, to spend it as fast.
Fine bazell desireth it may be hir lot,
to growe as the gilloflower, trim in a pot,
That ladies and gentils, for whom she doth serue,
may helpe hir as needeth, poore life to preserue.[13]
[Pg 116]
Keepe oxe fro thy cow that to profit would go,
least cow be deceiued by oxe dooing so:
And thou recompenced for suffering the same,
with want of a calfe and a cow to wax lame.
Thus endeth Maies husbandrie.

[1] "Reeding is no where so well done as in Norfolk and Suffolk.... It will bear a better slope than any other thatch."—T.R.

[2] See footnote 10, below.

[3] "or, as some call it, the Tine-tare."—T.R.

[4] to for seed. 1577.

[5] Sts. 14 and 15 are not in 1577.

[6] "I am told that 20s. an acre is the common Price for looking after a hop ground."—T.R.

[7] Misprinted "time."

[8] quamer. 1577.

[9] "The Proverb says, 'A Swarm in May is worth a Load of Hay.'"—T.R. 1710. Mavor says a swarm might fetch 15s. in his time (1812).

[10] The author of Tusser Redivivus and Mavor prefer fallow; though M. says that all standard editions read follow. Cf. st. 9, above.

[11] gales. 1577.

[12] "In our Author's time, and not long since, the Yarmouth and Ipswich Colliers were laid up in the Winter, and then the Spring Market was always dearest."—T.R.

[13] "Most people stroak Garden Basil, which leaves a grateful Smell on the Hand; and he will have it, that such stroaking from a fair lady preserves the life of the Basil."—T.R.


Junes abstract.

Chap. 41.

Wash shéep for to share,
that shéepe may go bare.
Though fléese ye take,
no patches make.
Share lambes no whit,
or share not yit.
If meadow be growne,
let meadow be mowne.
Plough early ye may,
and then carrie hay.
Tis good to be knowne,
to haue all of thine owne.
Who goeth a borrowing,
goeth a sorrowing.[E328]
Sée cart in plight,
and all things right.
Make drie ouer hed,
both houell and shed.
Of houell make stack,
for pease on his back.
In champion some,
wants elbow rome.
Let wheat and rie,
in house lie drie.
Buie turfe and sedge,
or else breake hedge.
Good store howse néedfull
well ordred spéedfull.
[Pg 117]
Thy barnes repaire,
make flower[2] faire.
Such shrubs as noie,
in sommer destroie.
Swinge brembles & brakes,[E329]
get forkes and rakes.
Spare hedlonds[3] some,
till haruest come.
Cast ditch and pond,
to lay vpon lond.

A lesson of hopyard.

Where hops will growe,
here learne to knowe.
Hops many will coome,
in a roode of roome.
Hops hate the land,
with grauell and sand.
The rotten mold
for hop is worth gold.
The sunne southwest
for hopyard is best.
Hop plot once found,
now dig the ground.
Hops fauoreth malt,
hops thrift doth exalt:
Of hops more réede,
as time shall néede.
Thus endeth Junes abstract, agreeing with Junes husbandrie.

[1] Sts. 10-12 are omitted in 1577.

[2] Query, floor.

[3] hedlong. 1577.


Junes husbandrie.

Chap. 42.

Calme weather in June
Corne sets in time.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Shéepe sharing.
Wash sheepe (for the better) where water doth run,
and let him go cleanly and drie in the sun.
Then share him and spare not, at two daies an end,
The sooner the better his corps will amend.[E330]
[Pg 118]
Beware of euill shéepe shearers.
Reward not thy sheepe (when ye take off his cote)
with twitchis and patches, as brode as a grote.[E331]
Let not such vngentlenesse happen to thine,
least flie with hir gentils doo make it to pine.
Sheare lambes in Julie.
Let lambes go vnclipped, till June be halfe worne,
the better the fleeses will growe to be shorne.
The Pie will discharge thee for pulling the rest:[E332]
the lighter the sheepe is, then feedeth it best.
Mowing time.
If meadow be forward, be mowing of some;
but mowe as the makers may well ouercome:[E333]
Take heede to the weather, the wind and the skie,
if danger approcheth, then cock apace[E334] crie.
Plough earlie till ten a clock, then to thy hay,
in plowing and carting, so profit ye may.
By little and little, thus dooing ye win:
that plough shall not hinder when haruest comes in.[E335]
Prouide of thine owne to haue all things at hand,
least worke and the workman vnoccupide stand.
Loue seldome to borowe that thinkest to saue,
for he that once lendeth twise looketh to haue.[E336]
Trim well thy carts.
Let cart be well searched without and within,
well clouted and greased, er hay time begin.
Thy hay being carried, though carter had sworne,
carts bottome well boorded is sauing of corne.
Good husbands that laie to saue all things vpright,
for tumbrels and cart, haue a shed readie dight.
Where vnder the hog may in winter lie warme:
to stand so enclosed, as wind doo no harme.
[Pg 119]
A houell is set vpon crotches[1] and couered with poles and strawe.
So likewise a houell will serue for a roome,
to stack on the peason, when haruest shall coome.
And serue thee in winter, more ouer than that,
to shut vp thy porklings thou mindest to fat.
Some barnroome haue little, and yardroome as much,
yet corne in the field appertaineth to such:
Then houels and rikes they are forced to make,
abrode or at home for necessities sake.
Make sure of breadcorne (of all other graine),
lie drie and well looked to, for mouse and for raine.
Though fitchis and pease, and such other as they,
(for pestring too much) on a houell ye ley.
With whinnes or with furzes thy houell renew,
for turfe or for sedge, for to bake and to brew:
For charcole and sea cole, as also for thacke,
for tallwood and billet, as yeerlie ye lacke.
The husbandlie storhouse.
What husbandlie husbands, except they be fooles,
but handsome haue storehouse, for trinkets and tooles:
And all in good order, fast locked to ly,
what euer is needfull, to find by and by.
Thy houses and barnes would be looked vpon,
and all things amended er haruest come on.
Things thus set in order, in quiet and rest,
shall further thy haruest and pleasure thee best.
The bushes and thorne with the shrubs that do noy,
in woodsere[3][E337] or sommer cut downe to destroy:
But where as decay to the tree ye will none,
for danger in woodsere, let hacking alone.
[Pg 120]
Mowe downe brakes and meadow.
At Midsommer, downe with the brembles and brakes,
and after, abrode with thy forks and thy rakes:
Set mowers a mowing, where meadow is growne,
the longer now standing the worse to be mowne.
Mowe hedlonds at haruest or after in the seueral fields.
Now downe with the grasse vpon hedlonds about,
that groweth in shadow, so ranke and so stout.
But grasse vpon hedlond of barlie and pease,
when haruest is ended, go mowe if ye please.
Such muddie deepe ditches, and pits in the feeld,
that all a drie sommer no water will yeeld,
By fieing[E338] and casting that mud vpon heapes,
commodities many the husbandman reapes.

A lesson where and when to plant good Hopyard.

Whome fancie persuadeth, among other crops,
to haue for his spending, sufficient of hops,[E339]
Must willinglie follow, of choises to chuse,
such lessons approoued, as skilfull doo vse.
Naught for hops.
Ground grauellie, sandie, and mixed with clay,
is naughtie for hops any maner of way;
Or if it be mingled with rubbish and stone,
for drines and barrennes, let it alone.
Good for hops.
Choose soile for the hop of the rottenest mould,
well doonged and wrought, as a garden plot should
Not far from the water (but not ouerflowne)
this lesson well noted is meete to be knowne.
[Pg 121]
The Sunne in the south, or else southly and west,
is ioy to the hop, as a welcomed gest;
But wind in the north, or else northly east,
to hop is as ill as a fraie in a feast.
Now dig thy new hop ground.
Meete plot for a hopyard once found as is told,
make thereof account, as of iewell of gold.
Now dig it and leaue it, the Sunne for to burne,
and afterward fence it, to serue for that turne.
The praise of hops.
The hop for his profit I thus doo exalt,
it strengtheneth drinke, and it fauoreth malt.
And being well brewed, long kept it will last,
and drawing abide, if ye drawe not too fast.

[1] "forked posts."—T.R.

[2] Sts. 10-12 are omitted in 1577.

[3] goodsere. 1577.


Julies abstract.

Chap. 43.

Go sirs and away,
to ted and make hay.
If stormes drawes nie,
then cock apace crie.
Let hay still bide,
till well it be dride.
(Hay made) away carrie,
no longer then tarrie.
Who best way titheth,
he best way thriueth.
Two good hay makers
woorth twentie crakers.
Let dallops[1] about
be mowne and had out.
Sée hay doo looke gréene,
sée féeld ye rake cléene.
Thry fallow I pray thée,
least thistles bewray thée.
Cut off, good wife,
ripe beane with a knife.
Ripe hempe out cull,
from karle to pull.
Let séede hempe growe,
till more ye knowe.
[Pg 122]
Drie flax get in,
for spinners[2] to spin.
Now mowe[3] or pluck
thy branke or buck.
Some wormewood saue,
for March to haue.
Mark Physick true,
of wormewood and rue.[4]
Get grist to the mill,
for wanting at will.[E340]
Thus endeth Julies abstract, agréeing with Julies husbandrie.

[1] dalors. 1577.

[2] mayde. 1577.

[3] Go reape. 1577.


Some woormwood saue
for March to haue. 1577.


Julies husbandrie.

Chap. 44.

No tempest, good Julie,
Least corne lookes rulie.
Forgotten month past,
Doe now at the last.
Hay haruest.
Go muster thy seruants, be captaine thy selfe,
prouiding them weapon and other like pelfe.
Get bottles and walletts, keepe field in the heat,
the feare is as much, as the danger is great.
With tossing and raking and setting on cox,
grasse latelie in swathes is hay for an ox:[E341]
That done, go and cart it and haue it away,
the battel is fought, ye haue gotten the day.
Pay thy tithes.
Pay iustly thy tithes whatsoeuer thou bee,
that God may in blessing send foison to thee.
Though Vicar[1] be bad, or the Parson as euill,
go not for thy tithing thy selfe to the Deuill.
Let hay be well made, or auise else auouse,[E342]
for molding in goef,[2] or of firing the house.
Lay coursest aside for the ox and the cow,
the finest for sheepe and thy gelding alow.
[Pg 123]
Then downe with the hedlonds, that groweth about,
leaue neuer a dallop vnmowne and had out.
Though grasse be but thin, about barlie and pease,
yet picked vp cleane ye shall find therein ease.
Thry fallowing.
Thry fallow[E343] betime, for destroieng of weede,
least thistle and duck[3] fall a blooming and seede,
Such season may chance, it shall stand thee vpon,
to till it againe, er an Sommer be gon.
¶ Gathering of garden beanes.
Not rent[4] off, but cut off, ripe beane with a knife,
for hindering stalke of hir vegetiue life.
So gather the lowest, and leaning the top,
shall teach thee a trick, for to double thy crop.[E344]
¶ Gather yellow hempe.
Wife, pluck fro thy seed hemp the fiemble hemp clene,
this looketh more yellow, the other more grene:
Vse ton for thy spinning, leaue Mihel the tother,
for shoo thred and halter, for rope and such other.[E345]
Now pluck vp thy flax, for the maidens to spin,
first see it dried, and timelie got in.
And mowe vp thy branke, and away with it drie,
and howse it vp close, out of danger to lie.
¶ Wormewood get against fleas and infection.
While wormwood[E346] hath seed, get a handful or twaine,
to saue against March to make flea to refraine:
Where chamber is sweeped, and wormwood is strowne,
no flea for his life dare abide to be knowne.
What sauer is better (if physick be true),
for places infected, than wormwood and rue.
It is as a comfort for hart and the braine,
and therefore to haue it, it is not in vaine.
[Pg 124]
¶ Be sure of bread and drinke for haruest.
Get grist to the mill, to haue plentie in store,
least miller lack water, as many doo more.[E347]
The meale the more yeeldeth, if seruant be true,
and miller that tolleth, take none but his due.
Thus endeth Julies husbandrie.

[1] curat. 1577.

[2] mow. 1614.

[3] dock. 1577.

[4] rend. 1573 (M.), 1577.

[5] St. 9 wanting in 1577.

[6] St. 11 wanting in 1577.


Augusts abstract.

Chap. 45.

Thry fallowing won,
get compassing don.
In June and in Awe
swinge brakes (for a lawe).
Pare saffron plot,
forget it not.
His dwelling made trim,
looke shortly for him:
When haruest is gon,
then saffron comes on.
A little of ground
brings saffron a pound.
The pleasure is fine,
the profit is thine.
Kéepe colour in drieng,
well vsed woorth buieng.
Maids, mustard séed reape,
and laie on a heape.
Good neighbors in déede,
change séede for séede.
Now strike vp drum,[2]
cum haruest man cum.
Take paine for a gaine,
one knaue mars twaine.[E348]
Reape corne by the day,[3]
least corne doo decay.
By great is the cheaper,
if trustie were reaper.
Blowe horne for sleapers,
and chéere vp thy reapers.[4]
[Pg 125]
Well dooings who loueth,
thes haruest points proueth.
Paie Gods part furst,
and not of the wurst.[E349]
Now Parson (I say),[5]
tith carrie away.
Kéepe cart gap wéele,
scare hog from whéele.
Mowe hawme to burne,
to serue thy turne:
To bake thy bread,
to burne vnder lead.
Mowne hawme being dry,
no longer let ly.
Get home thy hawme,
whilst weather is cawme.
Mowne barlie lesse cost,
ill mowne much lost.
Reape barlie with sickle,
that lies in ill pickle.[7]
Let gréenest stand,
for making of band.
Bands made without dew,
will hold but a few.
Laie band[8] to find her,
two rakes[9] to a binder.
Rake after sieth,
and pay thy tieth.
Corne carried all,
then rake it ye shall.
Let shock take sweate,
least gofe take heate.
Yet it is best reason,
to take it in season.[E350]
More often ye turne,
more pease ye out spurne.
Yet winnow them in,
er carrege begin.
Thy carting plie,
while weather is drie.
Bid gouing (clim)[10]
goue iust and trim.
Laie wheat for séede,
to come by at néede.
Séede barelie cast,
to thresh out last.
Lay pease vpon stacke,
if houell ye lack.
And couer it straight,
from doues that waight.
[Pg 126]
Let gleaners gleane,
(the poore I meane).
Which euer ye sowe,
that first eate lowe.
The other forbare,
for rowen[11] to spare.
Come home lord singing,
com home[12] corne bringing.[E351]
Tis merie in hall,
when[13] beards wag all.[E352]
Once had thy desire,
pay workman his hire.
Let none be beguilde,
man, woman, nor childe.
Thanke God[14] ye shall,
and adue for all.

Works after haruest.[15]

Get tumbrell in hand,
for barlie land.
The better the muck,
the better good luck.
Still carrege is good,
for timber and wood.
No longer delaies,
to mend the high waies.
Some loue as a iewell,
well placing of fewell.
In piling of logs,
make houell for hogs.
Wife, plow doth crie,
to picking of rie.
Such séede as ye sowe,
such reape or else mowe.
Take shipping or ride,
Lent stuffe to prouide.
Let haberden lie,
in peasestraw drie.
When out ye ride,
leaue a good guide.
Some profit spie out,
by riding about.
Marke now, thorow yéere,
what cheape, what déere.
Some skill doth well
to buie and to sell.
[Pg 127] Of théefe who bieth,
in danger lieth.
Commoditie knowne,
abrode is blowne.
At first hand bie,
at third let lie.
Haue monie prest,
to buie at the best.
Some cattle home bring,
for Mihelmas spring.[E353]
By hauke and hound,
small profit is found.
Dispatch, looke home,
to loitring mome.
Prouide or repent,
milch cow for Lent.
Now crone[16] your sheepe,
fat those ye kéepe.
Leaue milking old cow,
fat aged vp now.
Sell butter and chéese,
good Faires few léese.
At Faires go bie,
home wants to supplie.
If hops looke browne,
go gather them downe.
But not in the deaw,
for piddling with feaw.
Of hops this knack,
a meanie doo lack.[17]
Once had thy will,[18]
go couer his hill.
Take hop to thy dole,
but breake not his pole.
Learne here (thou stranger)
to frame hop manger.
Hop poles preserue,
againe to serue.
Hop poles by and by,
long safe vp to dry.
Least poles wax scant,
new poles go plant.[19]
The hop kell dride,
will best abide.
[Pg 128] Hops dried in loft,
aske tendance oft.
And shed their séedes,
much more than néedes.[20]
Hops dride small cost,
ill kept halfe lost.
Hops quickly[21] be spilt,
take héede if thou wilt.
Some come, some go,
This life is so.
Thus endeth Augusts abstract, agréeing with Augusts husbandrie.

* * * Stanza 47 is st. 49 in Septembers Abstract in 1577; st. 48 is 50, second couplet reads—

But not in a deawe,
nor pidling with feawe. 1577.

[1] Sts. 5, 6 are wanting in 1577.

[2] droom. 1577.

[3] Get reapers by day. 1577.

[4] giue gloues to, etc. 1573 (M.) and 1577.

[5] That parson may. 1577.

[6] Sts. 14, 15, are wanting in 1577.


Reape barley with hand,
that will not stand. 1577.

[8] hand. 1577.

[9] rakers. 1577.

[10] In 1577, Bid goeuing clim. Query, abbreviation for Clement.

[11] rewen. 1577.

[12] cart. 1573 (M.), 1577.

[13] let. 1577.

[14] so. 1577.

[15] The Works after Haruest are not in editions previous to 1580 (M.). But stanzas 47 and 48 are in Septembers Abstract. 1577.—Ed.

[16] i.e. pick out the crones.—T.R., but cf. Glossary (Crone).

[17] put in thy pack. 1577.

[18] fyll. 1577.

[19] ley new to plant. 1577.

[20] The third couplet is omitted in 1577.

[21] soone. 1577.


Augusts husbandrie.

Chap. 46.

Dry August and warme,
Doth haruest no harme.
Forgotten month past
Doe now at the last.
Thry fallowing.
Thry fallow once ended, go strike by and by,
both wheat land and barlie, and so let it ly.
And as ye haue leisure, go compas the same,
when vp ye doo lay it, more fruitfull to frame.
Mowing of brakes.
Get downe with thy brakes, er an showers doo come,
that cattle the better may pasture haue some.
In June and in August, as well doth appeere,
is best to mowe brakes, of all times in the yeere.
Paring of saffron.
Pare saffron[E354] betweene the two S. Maries daies,[E355]
or set or go shift it, that knowest the waies.
What yeere shall I doo it (more profit to yeeld?)
the fourth in garden, the third in the feeld.
[Pg 129]
¶ Huswiferie.
In hauing but fortie foote workmanly dight,
take saffron ynough for a Lord and a knight.
All winter time alter[1] as practise doth teach,
what plot haue ye better, for linnen to bleach.[2]
Maides, mustard seede gather, for being too ripe,[E356]
and weather it well, er ye giue it a stripe:[4]
Then dresse it and laie it in soller vp sweete,
least foistines make it for table vnmeete.
Good huswifes in sommer will saue their owne seedes,
against the next yeere, as occasion needes.
One seede for another, to make an exchange,
with fellowlie neighbourhood seemeth not strange.
Corne harvest.
Make sure of reapers, get haruest in hand,
the corne that is ripe, doo[6] but shed as it stand.
Be thankfull to God, for his benefits sent,
and willing to saue it with earnest intent.
Champion by great, the other by day.
To let out thy haruest, by great[7] or by day,
let this by experience leade thee a way.
By great will deceiue thee, with lingring it out,
by day will dispatch, and put all out of dout.[E357]
Grant haruest lord[8][E358] more by a penie or twoo,
to call on his fellowes the better to doo:
Giue gloues to thy reapers,[9] a larges[E359] to crie,
and dailie to loiterers haue a good eie.
[Pg 130]
Good haruest points.
Reape wel, scatter not, gather cleane that is shorne,
binde fast, shock apace, haue an eie to thy corne.
Lode safe, carrie home, follow time being faire,
goue iust in the barne, it is out of despaire.
Tithe dulie and trulie, with hartie good will,
that God and his blessing may dwell with thee still:
Though Parson neglecteth his dutie for this,
thanke thou thy Lord God, and giue erie man his.
Parson looke to thy tithe.
Corne tithed (sir Parson) to gather go get,
and cause it on shocks to be by and by set:
Not leauing it scattering abrode on the ground,
nor long in the field, but away with it round.
Kéepe hog from cart whéele.
To cart gap and barne, set a guide to looke weele,
and hoy out (sir carter) the hog fro thy wheele:
Least greedie of feeding, in following cart,
it noieth or perisheth, spight of thy hart.
In champion countrie a pleasure they take,
to mowe vp their hawme, for to brew and to bake.
And also it stands them in steade of their thack,
which being well inned, they cannot well lack.
The hawme is the strawe of the wheat or the rie,
which once being reaped, they mowe by and bie:
For feare of destroieng with cattle or raine,
the sooner ye lode it, more profit ye gaine.
Mowing of barlie.
The mowing of barlie, if barlie doo stand,
is cheapest and best, for to rid out of hand:[E360]
Some mowe it and rake it, and sets it on cocks,
some mowe it and binds it, and sets it on shocks.
[Pg 131]
Binding of barlie.
Of barlie the longest and greenest ye find,
leaue standing by dallops,[E361] till time ye doo bind:
Then early in morning (while deaw is thereon),
to making of bands till the deaw be all gon.
Spreading of barlie bands.
One spreadeth those bands, so in order to ly,
as barlie (in swatches) may fill it thereby:
Which gathered vp, with the rake and the hand,
the follower after them bindeth in band.
Tithe of rakings.
Where barlie is raked (if dealing be true),
the tenth of such raking to Parson is due:
Where scatring of barlie is seene to be much,
there custome nor conscience tithing should gruch.[11]
Corne being had downe (any way ye alow),
should wither as needeth, for burning in mow:
Such skill appertaineth to haruest mans art,
and taken in time is a husbandly part.
Usage of peason.
No turning of peason till carrege ye make,
nor turne in no more, than ye mind for to take:
Least beaten with showers so turned to drie,
by turning and tossing they shed as they lie.
Lingring Lubbers.
If weather be faire, and tidie[12][E362] thy graine,
make speedily carrege, for feare of a raine:
For tempest and showers deceiueth a menie,
and lingering lubbers loose many a penie.
Best maner of gouing corn in the barn.
In gouing at haruest, learne skilfully how
ech graine for to laie, by it selfe on a mow:
Seede barlie the purest, goue out of the way,
all other nigh hand goue as just as ye may.
[Pg 132]
Pease stack.
Stack pease vpon houell abrode in the yard,
to couer it quicklie, let owner regard:
Least Doue and the cadow, there finding a smack,[E363]
with ill stormie weather doo perish[E364] thy stack.
Leaue gleaning for the poore.
Corne carred, let such as be poore go and gleane,
and after, thy cattle to mowth it vp cleane.
Then spare it for rowen, till Mihel be past,
to lengthen[E365] thy dairie no better thou hast.
In haruest time, haruest folke, seruants and all,
should make all togither good cheere in the hall:
And fill out the black boule of bleith[E366] to their song,
and let them be merie all haruest time long.
Pay trulie haruest folke.
Once ended thy haruest, let none be begilde,
please such as did helpe thee, man, woman, and childe.
Thus dooing, with alway such helpe as they can,
thou winnest the praise of the labouring man.
Thanke God for all.
Now looke vp to Godward, let tong neuer cease
in thanking of him, for his mightie encrease:
Accept my good will, for a proofe go and trie:
the better thou thriuest, the gladder am I.
[End of Augusts Husbandry in 1577.]

Works after Haruest.[13]

Now carrie out compas, when haruest is donne,
where barlie thou sowest, my champion sonne:
Or laie it on heape, in the field as ye may,
till carriage be faire, to haue it away.
[Pg 133]
Whose compas is rotten and carried in time,
and spred as it should be, thrifts ladder may clime.[E367]
Whose compas is paltrie and carried too late,
such husbandrie vseth that many doo hate.[E368]
Carriage of fewell.
Er winter preuenteth, while weather is good,
for galling of pasture get home with thy wood.
And carrie out grauell to fill vp a hole:
both timber and furzen, the turfe and the cole.
Well placing of fewell.
Howse charcole and sedge, chip and cole[15] of the land,
pile tallwood and billet, stacke all that hath band.
Blocks, rootes,[16] pole and bough, set vpright to the thetch:
the neerer more handsome in winter to fetch.
Houell for hogs.
In stacking of bauen, and piling of logs,
make vnder thy bauen a houell for hogs,
And warmelie enclose it, all sauing the mouth,
and that to stand open, and full to the south.
Once haruest dispatched, get wenches and boies,
and into the barne, afore all other toies.
Choised seede to be picked and trimlie well fide,
for seede may no longer from threshing abide.
Get seede aforehand, in a readines had,
or better prouide, if thine owne be too bad.
Be carefull of seede, or else such as ye sowe,
be sure at haruest, to reape or to mowe.
Provision for Lent.
When haruest is ended, take shipping or ride,
Ling,[E369] Saltfish and Herring, for Lent to prouide.
To buie it at first, as it commeth to rode,
shall paie for thy charges thou spendest abrode.
[Pg 134]
Choose skilfullie Saltfish, not burnt at the stone,[18]
buie such as be good, or else let it alone.
Get home that is bought, and goe stack it vp drie,
with peasestrawe betweene it, the safer to lie.
Compassing of barlie land.
Er euer ye iornie, cause seruant with speede
to compas thy barlie land where it is neede.
One aker well compassed, passeth some three,
thy barne shall at haruest declare it to thee.
This lesson is learned by riding about,
the prices of vittels, the yeere thorough out.
Both what to be selling and what to refraine,
and what to be buieng, to bring in againe.[E370]
Though buieng and selling doth woonderfull well,
to such as haue skill how to buie and to sell:
Yet chopping and changing I cannot commend,
with theefe[19] and his marrow, for feare of ill end.
The rich in his bargaining needes not be tought,
of buier and seller full far is he sought.
Yet herein consisteth a part of my text,
who buieth at first hand, and who at the next.
Buieng at first hand.
At first hand he buieth that paieth all downe,
at second, that hath not so much in the towne,
At third hand he buieth that buieth of trust,
at his hand who buieth shall paie for his lust.[E371]
Readie monie bieth best cheape.
As oft as ye bargaine, for better or wurse,
to buie it the cheaper, haue chinkes in thy purse
Touch kept is commended, yet credit to keepe,
is paie and dispatch him, er euer ye sleepe.
[Pg 135]
Be mindfull abrode of Mihelmas[20] spring,
for thereon dependeth a husbandlie thing:
Though some haue a pleasure, with hauke vpon hand,
good husbands get treasure, to purchase their land.
Winter milch cow.
Thy market dispatched, turne home againe round,
least gaping for penie, thou loosest[21] a pound:
Prouide for thy wife, or else looke to be shent,
good milch cow for winter, another for Lent.
Old ewes.
In traueling homeward, buie fortie good crones,
and fat vp the bodies of those seelie bones.
Leaue milking and drie vp old mulley thy cow,
the crooked and aged, to fatting put now.
Buieng or selling of butter and chéese.
At Bartilmewtide, or at Sturbridge faire,[E372]
buie that as is needfull, thy house to repaire:
Then sell to thy profit, both butter and cheese,
who buieth it sooner, the more he shall leese.
Hops gathering.
If hops doo looke brownish, then are ye too slowe,
if longer ye suffer those hops for to growe.
Now sooner ye gather, more profit is found,
if weather be faire and deaw of a ground.
Increasing of hops.
Not breake off, but cut off, from hop the hop string,
leaue growing a little againe for to spring.
Whose hill about pared, and therewith new clad,
shall nourish more sets against March to be had.
The order of hops gathering.
Hop hillock discharged of euerie let,
see then without breaking, ech pole ye out get.
Which being vntangled aboue in the tops,
go carrie to such as are plucking of hops.
[Pg 136]
Hop manger.
Take soutage or haier (that couers the kell),
set like to a manger and fastened well:
With poles vpon crotchis as high as thy brest,
for sauing and[23] riddance is husbandrie best.[E373]
Saue hop poles.
Hops had, the hop poles that are likelie preserue,
(from breaking and rotting) againe for to serue:
And plant ye with alders or willowes a[24] plot,
where yeerelie as needeth mo poles may be got.
Drieng of hops.
Some skilfullie drieth their hops on a kell,
and some on a soller, oft turning them well.
Kell dried will abide, foule weather or faire,
where drieng and lieng in loft doo dispaire.
Kéeping of hops.
Some close them vp drie in a hogshed or fat,
yet canuas or soutage is better than that:
By drieng and lieng they quickly be spilt:
thus much haue I shewed, doo now as thou wilt.
Old fermer is forced long August to make,
his goodes at more leisure away for to take.
New fermer he thinketh ech houre a day,
vntill the old fermer be packing away.[E374]
Thus endeth and holdeth out Augusts husbandrie, till Mihelmas Eue.
Tho. Tusser.

[1] after. 1577.

[2] "Saffron makes a very good Sward, whereon Linnen may lye hollow and bleach well enough."—T.R.

[3] Stanza 5 is wanting in 1573 (M.) and 1577.

[4] "Beating it upon a Hurdle or some other rough thing."—T.R.

[5] St. 6 is wanting in 1573 (M.) and 1577.

[6] doth. 1614.

[7] "Our Author is justly against letting Harvest by the great, for whoever does will certainly find himself cheated or slighted."—T.R.

[8] "Some stay'd sober working man, who understands all sorts of Harvest Work."—T.R. Cf. Matt. ix. 38.

[9] "Where the Wheat is thistly."—T.R.

[10] Stanzas 11, 14, and 15 are not in 1577.

[11] "This alludes to the custom of Norfolk, where the Parson takes his Tyth in the Swarth, the Farmer also clears the Swarths, and afterwards with a Drag-Rake rakes his ground all over."—T.R.

[12] "Tidy is an old Word signifying neat, proper, or in Season, from the word Tide."—T.R.

[13] Not in editions previous to 1580 (M.). Portions are in Septembers Husbandry 1577.—Ed.

[14] Stanzas 31-33 are in Septembers Husbandry. 1577.

[15] turfe. 1577.

[16] Block rootes. 1577.

[17] Sts. 36-46 appear as sts. 25-35 in Septembers Husbandry. 1577.

[18] "Such Fish as is dry'd on the Beach in too hot Weather."—T.R.

[19] knaue. 1577.

[20] Mighelmas. 1577.

[21] lossest. 1577.

[22] Sts. 47-54 occur as sts. 49-56 of Septembers Husbandry. 1577.

[23] of. 1577.

[24] some. 1577.


Corne Haruest equally deuided into ten partes.

Chap. 47.[1]

One part cast forth, for rent due out of hand,[E375]
One other part, for seede to sowe thy land.
Another part, leaue Parson for his tieth.
Another part for haruest, sickle and sieth.
[Pg 137]
One part for plowwrite, cartwrite, knacker and smith,
One part to vphold thy teemes that drawe therewith.
One part for seruant and workmans wages lay.
One part likewise for filbellie day by day.
For naperie sope and candle, salt and sauce, tinker[2] and cooper, brasse and pewter.
One part thy wife for needfull things doth craue.
Thy selfe and childe, the last one part would haue.
Who minds to cote,
vpon this note,
may easily find ynough:
What charge and paine,
to litle gaine,
doth follow toiling plough.
Yet fermer may
thanke God and say,
for yeerlie such good hap:
Well fare the plough,[E376]
that sends ynough
to stop so many a gap.

[1] This chapter is wanting in 1573 (M.); but is in 1577.

[2] timber. 1577.


A briefe conclusion, where you may see,
Ech word in the verse, to begin with a T.

Chap. 48.

Triue for contriue.
The thriftie that teacheth the thriuing to thriue,
Teach timelie to trauerse the thing that thou triue.
Transferring thy toiling, to timelines tought.
This teacheth thee temprance, to temper thy thought.
Take trustie (to trust to) that thinkest to thee,
That trustily thriftines trowleth to thee.
Then temper thy trauell to tarie the tide,
This teacheth thee thriftines twentie times tride.
Take thankfull thy talent, thanke thankfully those
That thriftilie teacheth thy time to transpose.
Troth twise to thee teached, teach twentie times ten.
This trade thou that takest, take thrift to thee then.[E377]
[Thomas Tusser (1577).]

[Pg 138]


[Mans age deuided into twelue seauens. 1614.]

¶ Mans age deuided here ye haue,
By prentiships, from birth to his graue.

Chap. 49.

7.    The first seuen yeers bring vp as a childe,[E378]
14.    The next to learning, for waxing too wilde.
21.    The next keepe vnder sir hobbard de hoy,
28.    The next a man no longer a boy.
35.    The next, let lustie laie wisely to wiue,
42.    The next, laie now or else neuer to thriue.
49.    The next, make sure for terme of thy life,
56.    The next, saue somewhat for children and wife.
63.    The next, be staied, giue ouer thy lust,
70.    The next, thinke hourely whither thou must.
77.    The next, get chaire and crotches to stay,
84.    The next, to heauen God send vs the way.
Who looseth their youth, shall rue it in age:
Who hateth the truth, in sorowe shall rage.


Another diuision of the nature of mans age.

Chap. 50.

The Ape, the Lion, the Foxe, the Asse,
Thus sets foorth man, as in a glasse.
Ape    Like Apes we be toieng, till twentie and one,
Lyon    Then hastie as Lions till fortie be gone:
Foxe    Then wilie as Foxes, till threescore and three,
Asse    Then after for Asses accounted[1] we bee.

[Pg 139]

Who plaies with his better, this lesson must knowe,
what humblenes Foxe to the Lion doth owe.
Foxe, Ape with his toieng[E379] and rudenes of Asse,
brings (out of good hower) displeasure to passe.

[1] accompted. 1577.


Comparing good husband with vnthrift his brother,
The better discerneth the tone from the tother.

Chap. 51

Ill husbandrie braggeth,
to go with the best:
Good husbandrie baggeth
vp gold in his chest.
Ill husbandry trudgeth,
with vnthrifts about:
Good husbandry snudgeth,
for fear of a dout.
Ill husbandrie spendeth
abrode like a mome:
Good husbandrie tendeth
his charges at home.
Ill husbandrie selleth
his corne on the ground:
Good husbandrie smelleth
no gain that way found.
Ill husbandrie loseth,
for lack of good fence:
Good husbandrie closeth,
and gaineth the pence.
Ill husbandrie trusteth
to him and to hur:[E381]
Good husbandrie lusteth
himselfe for to stur.
Ill husbandrie eateth
himselfe out a doore:
Good husbandrie meateth
his friend and the poore.
Ill husbandrie daieth,[E382]
or letteth it lie:
Good husbandrie paieth,
the cheaper to bie.
Ill husbandrie lurketh,
and stealeth a sleepe:
Good husbandrie worketh,
his houshold to kéepe.
Ill husbandrie liueth,
by that and by this:[E383]
Good husbandrie giueth
to erie man his.
[Pg 140]
Ill husbandrie taketh,
and spendeth vp all:
Good husbandrie maketh
good shift with a small.
Ill husbandry praieth
his wife to make shift:
Good husbandrie saieth
take this of my gift.
Ill husbandry drowseth
at fortune so auke:
Good husbandrie rowseth
himselfe as a hauke.
Ill husbandrie lieth
in prison for debt:
Good husbandrie spieth
where profit to get.
Ill husbandrie waies
has to fraud what he can
Good husbandrie praies
hath of euerie man.
Ill husbandrie neuer
hath welth to keep touch
Good husbandrie euer
hath penie in pouch.
Good husband his boone,
Or request hath a far.
Ill husband assoone
Hath a tode with an R.[E384]


A comparison betweene Champion countrie and seuerall.

Chap. 52.

The countrie[1] enclosed I praise,
the tother delighteth not me,
For nothing the wealth it doth raise,
to such as inferior be.
How both of them partly I knowe,
here somewhat I mind for to showe.[2]
[Pg 141]
There swineherd that keepeth the hog,
there neatherd, with cur and his horne,
There shepherd with whistle and dog,
be fence to the medowe and corne.
There horse being tide on a balke,
is readie with theefe for to walke.
Where all thing in common doth rest,
corne field with the pasture and meade,
Though common ye doo for the best,
yet what doth it stand ye in steade?
There common as commoners vse,
for otherwise shalt thou not chuse.[3]
What laier much better then there,
or cheaper (thereon to doo well?)
What drudgerie more any where
lesse good thereof where can ye tell?
What gotten by Sommer is seene:
in Winter is eaten vp cleene.
Example by Leicester shire,
what soile can be better than that?
For any thing hart can desire,
and yet doth it want ye see what.
Mast, couert, close pasture, and wood,
and other things needfull as good.
All these doo enclosure bring,
experience teacheth no lesse,
I speake not to boast of the thing,
but onely a troth to expresse.
Example (if doubt ye doo make):
by Suffolke and Essex go take.[E385]
[Pg 142]
More plentie of mutton and biefe,
corne, butter, and cheese of the best,
More wealth any where (to be briefe),
more people, more handsome and prest,
Where find ye? (go search any coast)
than there where enclosure is most.
More worke for the labouring man,
as well in the towne as the feeld:
Or thereof (deuise if ye can)
more profit what countries doo yeeld?
More seldome where see ye the poore,
go begging from doore vnto doore?
Champion countrie.
In Norfolke behold the dispaire
of tillage too much to be borne:
By drouers from faire to faire,
and others destroieng the corne.
By custome and couetous pates,
by gaps, and by opening of gates.[4][E386]
What speake I of commoners by,
with drawing all after a line:
So noieng the corne, as it ly,
with cattle, with conies,[5] and swine.
When thou[6] hast bestowed thy cost,
looke halfe of the same to be lost.
The flocks of the Lords of the soile
do yeerly the winter corne wrong:
The same in a manner they spoile,
with feeding so lowe and so long.
And therefore that champion feeld
doth seldome good winter corne yeeld.
[Pg 143]
Champion noiances.
By Cambridge a towne I doo knowe,
where many good husbands doo dwell;
Whose losses by losels doth showe,[E387]
more here than is needfull to tell:
Determine at court what they shall,
performed is nothing at all.[E388]
The champion robbeth by night,
and prowleth and filcheth by day:
Himselfe and his beast out of sight,
both spoileth and maketh away
Not onely thy grasse, but thy corne,
both after, and er it be shorne.
Pease bolt with thy pease he will haue,
his houshold to feede and his hog:
Now stealeth he, now will he craue,
and now will he coosen and cog.
In Bridewell a number be stript,
lesse woorthie than theefe to be whipt.[E389]
The oxboy, as ill is as hee,
or worser, if worse may be found:
For spoiling from thine and from thee,
of grasse and of corne on the ground.
Laie neuer so well for to saue it,
by night or by daie he will haue it.
What orchard vnrobbed escapes?
or pullet dare walke in their jet?
But homeward or outward (like apes)
they count it their owne they can get.
Lord, if ye doo take them,[E390] what sturs!
how hold they togither like burs!
[Pg 144]
For commons these commoners crie,
enclosing they may not abide:
Yet some be not able to bie
a cow with hir calfe by hir side.
Nor laie not to liue by their wurke,
but theeuishlie loiter and lurke.
The Lord of the towne is to blame,
for these and for many faults mo.[E391]
For that he doth knowe of the same,
yet lets it vnpunished go.
Such Lords ill example doth giue,
where verlets[E392] and drabs so may liue.
What footpathes are made, and how brode!
annoiance too much to be borne:
With horse and with cattle what rode
is made thorow erie mans corne!
Where champions ruleth the roste,[E393]
there dailie disorder is moste.
Their sheepe when they driue for to wash,
how careles such sheepe they doo guide!
The fermer they leaue in the lash,
with losses on euerie side.
Though any mans corne they doo bite,
they will not alow him a mite.
What hunting and hauking is there!
corne looking for sickle at hand:
Actes lawles to doo without feare,
how yeerlie[8] togither they band.
More harme to another to doo,
than they would be done so vntoo.
[Pg 145]
More profit is quieter found
(where pastures in seuerall bee:)
Of one seelie aker of ground,
than champion maketh of three.
Againe what a ioie is it knowne,
when men may be bold of their owne!
The tone is commended for graine,
yet bread made of beanes they doo eate:
The tother for one loafe haue twaine,
of mastlin, of rie, or of wheate.
The champion liueth full bare,
when woodland full merie doth fare.
Tone giueth his corne in a darth,
to horse, sheepe, and hog euery daie;
The tother giue cattle warme barth,
and feede them with strawe and with haie.
Corne spent of the tone so in vaine:
the tother doth sell to his gaine.
Tone barefoote and ragged doth go,
and readie in winter to sterue:
When tother ye see doo not so,
but hath that is needfull to serue.
Tone paine in a cotage doth take,
when tother trim bowers doo make.
Tone laieth for turfe and for sedge,
and hath it with woonderfull suit:
When tother in euerie hedge,
hath plentie of fewell and fruit.
Euils twentie times worser than thease,
enclosure quickly would ease.
[Pg 146]
In woodland the poore men that haue
scarse fully two akers of land,
More merily liue and doo saue,
than tother with twentie in hand.
Yet paie they as much for the twoo
as tother for twentie must doo.
The labourer comming from thence,
in woodland to worke any where:
(I warrant you) goeth not hence,
to worke anie more againe there.
If this same be true (as it is:)
why gather they nothing of this?
The poore at enclosing doo grutch,
because of abuses that fall,
Least some man should haue but too much,
and some againe nothing at all.
If order might therein be found,
what were to the seuerall ground?
Thus endeth Husbandry. 1577.
Here followeth Huswifery. 1573.

* * * "It is likely this was wrote soon after Ket's rebellion, as a dissuasive from the like, and to persuade the poorer sort quietly to endure Enclosures."—T.R.

[1] countery. 1577.


Because of them both I do know
I mind thereof somewhat to show. 1577.


There common as commoners do,
As good else to cobble a shoe. 1573 (M.) and 1577.

[4] "In Norfolk (in our Author's time) there was a considerable Rebellion, call'd Ket's Rebellion against Inclosures, and to this day they take the Liberty of throwing open all Enclosures out of the Common Field, these are commonly call'd Lammas Lands, and half Year Lands."—T.R.

[5] sheep and with swine. 1577.

[6] one. 1577.

[7] Stanzas 12-21 are not in 1577.

[8] Query, yarely.


The description of an enuious and naughtie neighbour.[E394]

Chap. 53. [1]

An enuious neighbour is easie to finde,
His cumbersome fetches are seldome[2] behinde.
His hatred procureth from naughtie to wurse,
His friendship like Iudas that carried the purse.[E395]
[Pg 147] His head is a storehouse, with quarrels full fraught,
His braine is vnquiet, till all come to naught.
His memorie pregnant, old euils to recite,
His mind euer fixed each euill to requite.
His mouth full of venim, his lips out of frame,[E396]
His tongue a false witnes, his friend to defame.
His eies be promooters, some trespas to spie,
His eares be as spials,[E397] alarum to crie.
His hands be as tyrants, reuenging ech thing,
His feete at thine elbow, as serpent to sting.
His breast full of rancor, like Canker[3] to freat,
His hart like a Lion, his neighbour to eat.
His gate like a sheepebiter,[E398] fleering aside,
His looke like a coxcombe,[E399] vp puffed with pride.
His face made of brasse, like a vice in a game,
His iesture like Dauus,[E400] whom Terence doth name.
His brag as Thersites,[E401] with elbowes abrode.
His cheekes in his furie shall swell like a tode.[E402]
His colour like ashes, his cap in his eies,
His nose in the aire, his snout in the skies.
His promise to trust to as slipprie[4] as ice,
His credit much like to the chance of the dice.
His knowledge or skill is in prating[5] too much,
His companie shunned,[6] and so be all such.
His friendship is counterfait, seldome to trust,
His dooings vnluckie and euer vniust.
His fetch is to flatter, to get what he can,
His purpose once gotten, a pin[7] for thee than.

[1] This chapter precedes the Author's Life in 1577 edition.

[2] sieldome. 1614.

[3] Coprus. 1577.

[4] slipper. 1577.

[5] parting. 1577.

[6] shenned. 1577.

[7] penny. 1577.

[Pg 148]

[In the edition of 1577 the following piece is inserted here.]


To light a candell before the Deuill.[E403]

To beard thy foes shews forth thy witt,
but helpes the matter nere a whit.
My sonne, were it not worst
to frame thy nature so,
That as thine vse is to thy friend,
likewise to greet thy foe:
Though not for hope of good,
yet for the feare of euill,
Thou maist find ease so proffering vp
a candell to the deuill.
This knowne, the surest way
thine enemies wrath to swage;
If thou canst currey fauour thus,
thou shalt be counted sage.
Of truth I tell no lye,
by proofe to well I knowe,
The stubborne want of only this
hath brought full many lowe.
And yet to speak the trouth
the Deuill is worse then naught,
That no good turne will once deserue,
yet looketh vp so haught.
Exalt him how we please,
and giue him what we can,
Yet skarcely shall we find such Deuill
a truly honest man.
[Pg 149]
But where the mighty may
of force the weake constraine,
It shal be wysely doone to bow
to voyd a farther payne,
Like as in tempest great,
where wind doth beare the stroke,
Much safer stands the bowing reede
then doth the stubborne oke.
And chiefly when of all
thy selfe art one of those
That fortune needes, will haue to dwell
fast by the Deuils nose:
Then (though against thine hart)
thy tongue thou must so charme
That tongue may say, where ere thou come
the Deuill doth no man harme.
For where as no reuenge
may stand a man in steede,
As good is then an humble speech,
as otherwise to bleede.
Like as ye see by him
that hath a shrew to wife,
As good it is to speak her faire
as still to liue in strife.
Put thou no Deuill in boote
as once did master Shorne:[E404]
Take heede as from madde bayted bull
to keepe thee fro his horne.
And where ye see the Deuill
so bold to wrest with lawe,
Make congé oft, and crouch aloofe,
but come not in his clawe.
[Pg 150]
The scholer forth of schoole
may boldlier take his mind,
The fields haue eyes, the bushes eares,
false birds can fetch the wind.[E405]
The further from the gone
the safer may ye skippe,
The nerer to the carters hand
the nerer to the whippe.
The neerer to the whippe
the sooner comes the jerke,
The sooner that poore beast is strucke
the sooner doth he yerke.
Some loueth for to whippe,
to see how ierkes will smart,
In wofull taking is that horse
that nedes must drawe in cart.
Such fellow is the Deuell,
that doth euen what he list,
Yet thinketh he what ere he doth
none ought dare say, but whist.
Take therefore heed, my sonne,
and marke full well this song,
Learne thus with craft to claw the deuell,
else liue in rest not long.


A sonet against a slanderous tongue.[E406]

Chap. 54.

Doth darnell good, among the flowrie wheat?
Doo thistles good, so thick in fallow spide?
Doo taint wormes good, that lurke where ox should eat
Or sucking drones, in hiue where bees abide?
[Pg 151] Doo hornets good, or these same biting gnats?
Foule swelling toades, what good by them is seene?
In house well deckt, what good doth gnawing rats?
Or casting mowles, among the meadowes greene?
Doth heauie newes make glad the hart of man?
Or noisome smels, what good doth that to health?
Now once for all, what good (shew who so can?)
Doo stinging[1] snakes, to this our Commonwealth?
No more doth good a peeuish slanderous toung,
But hurts it selfe, and noies both old and young.[E407]

[1] stinking. 1577.


A sonet vpon the Authors first seuen yeeres seruice.

Chap. 55.

Seuen times hath Janus[E408] tane new yéere by hand,
Seuen times hath blustring March blowne forth his powre:
To driue out Aprils buds, by sea and land,
For minion Maie, to deck most trim with flowre.
Seuen times hath temperate Ver,[E409] like pageant plaide,
And pleasant Æstas eke hir flowers told:
Seuen times Autumnes heate hath béene delaide,[E410]
With Hyems boistrous blasts, and bitter cold.
Seuen times the thirtéene Moones[E411] haue changed hew,
Seuen times the Sunne his course hath gone about:
Seuen times ech bird hir nest hath built anew,
Since first time you to serue, I choosed out.
Still yours am I, though thus the time hath past,
And trust to be, as[1] long as life shall last.

[1] so. 1577.

[Pg 152]


Man minded for to thriue
must wisely lay to wiue.
What hap may thereby fall
here argued find ye shall.

The Authours Dialogue betweene two Bachelers, of wiuing and thriuing by Affirmation and Obiection.[E412]

Chap. 56.

Frend, where we met this other day,
We heard one make his mone and say,
Good Lord, how might I thriue?
We heard an other answere him,
Then make thee handsome, trick and trim,
And lay in time to wiue.
And what of that, say you to mee?
Do you your selfe thinke that to be
The best way for to thriue?
If truth were truely bolted out,[E413]
As touching thrift, I stand in dout,
If men were best to wiue.
There is no doubt, for proue I can,
I haue but seldome seene that man
Which could the way to thriue:[E414]
Vntill it was his happie lot,
To stay himselfe in some good plot,[E415]
And wisely then to wiue.
[Pg 153]
And I am of an other minde,
For by no reason can I finde,
How that way I should thriue:
For where as now I spend a pennie,
I should not then be quit with mennie,
Through bondage for to wiue.
Not so, for now where thou dost spend,
Of this and that,[E416] to no good end,
Which hindereth thee to thriue:
Such vaine expences thou shouldst saue,
And daily then lay more to haue,
As others do that wiue.
Why then do folke this prouerbe put,
The blacke oxe neare trod on thy fut,[E417]
If that way were to thriue?
Hereout a man may soone picke forth,
Few feeleth what a pennie is worth,
Till such time as they wiue.
It may so chaunce as thou doest say,
This lesson therefore beare away,
If thereby thou wilt thriue:
Looke ere thou leape, see ere thou go,
It may be for thy profite so,
For thee to lay to wiue.
It is too much we dailie heare,
To wiue and thriue both in a yeare,[E418]
As touching now to thriue:
[Pg 154] I know not herein what to spie,
But that there doth small profite lie,
To fansie for to wiue.
In deede the first yeare oft is such,
That fondly some bestoweth much,
A let to them to thriue:
Yet other moe may soone be founde,
Which getteth many a faire pounde,
The same day that they wiue.
I graunt some getteth more that day,
Than they can easily beare away,
Nowe needes then must they thriue:
What gaineth such thinke you by that?
A little burden, you wote what,
Through fondnesse for to wiue.
Thou seemest blinde as mo[E419] haue bin,
It is not beautie bringeth in
The thing to make thee thriue:
In womankinde, see that ye do
Require of hir no gift but two,
When ere ye minde to wiue.
But two, say you? I pray you than
Shew those as briefly as you can,
If that may helpe to thriue:
I weene we must conclude anon,
Of those same twaine to want the ton,
When ere we chance to wiue.
[Pg 155]
Honestie and huswiferie.
An honest huswife, trust to mee,
Be those same twaine, I say to thee,
That helpe so much to thriue:
As honestie farre passeth golde,
So huswiferie in yong and olde,
Do pleasure such as wiue.
The honestie in deede I graunt,
Is one good point the wife should haunt,
To make hir husband thriue:
But now faine would I haue you show,
How should a man good huswife know,
If once he hap to wiue?
A huswife good betimes will rise,
And order things in comelie wise,
Hir minde is set to thriue:
Vpon hir distaffe she will spinne,
And with hir needle she will winne,
If such ye hap to wiue.
It is not idle going about,
Nor all day pricking on a clout,
Can make a man to thriue:
Or if there be no other winning,
But that the wife gets by hir spinning,
Small thrift it is to wiue.
Some more than this yet do shee[1] shall,
Although thy stocke be verie small,
Yet will shee helpe thee thriue:
[Pg 156] Lay thou[2] to saue, as well as she,
And then thou shalt[3] enriched be,
When such thou hapst[4] to wiue.
If she were mine, I tell thee troth,
Too much to trouble hir I were loth,
For greedines to thriue:
Least some should talke, as is the speech,
The good wiues husband weares no breech,[E420]
If such I hap to wiue.
What hurts it thee what some do say,
If honestlie she take the way
To helpe thee for to thriue?
For honestie will make hir prest,
To doo the thing that shall be best,
If such ye hap to wiue.
Why did Diogenes say than,
To one that askt of him time whan,
Were best to wiue to thriue?
Not yet (quoth[5] he) if thou be yong,
If thou waxe old, then holde thy tong,
It is too late to wiue.[E421]
Belike he knew some shrewish wife,
Which with hir husband made such strife,
That hindered him to thriue:
[Pg 157] Who then may blame him for that clause,
Though then he spake as some had cause,
As touching for to wiue?
Why then I see to take a shrew,
(As seldome other there be few)
Is not the way to thriue:
So hard a thing I spie it is,
The good to chuse, the shrew to mis,
That feareth me to wiue.[E422]
She may in something seeme a shrew,
Yet such a huswife as but few,
To helpe thee for to thriue:
This prouerbe looke in mind ye keepe,
As good a shrew is as a sheepe,[E423]
For you to take to wiue.
Now be she lambe or be she eaw,
Giue me the sheepe, take thou the shreaw,
See which of vs shall thriue:
If she be shrewish thinke for troth,
For all her thrift I would be loth
To match with such to wiue.
Tush, farewell then, I leaue you off,
Such fooles as you that loue to scoff,
Shall seldome wiue to thriue:
Contrarie hir, as you do me,
And then ye shall, I warrant ye,
Repent ye if ye wiue.
[Pg 158]
Friend, let vs both giue iustly place,
To wedded man to iudge this cace,
Which best way is to thriue:
For both our talke as seemeth plaine,
Is but as hapneth in our braine,
To will or not to wiue.
Wedded mans iudgement
Vpon the former argument.
As Cock that wants his mate, goes rouing all about,
With crowing early and late, to find his louer out:
And as poore sillie hen, long wanting cock to guide,
Soone droopes and shortly then beginnes to peake aside:
Euen so it is with man and wife, where gouernment is found,
The want of ton the others life doth shortly soone confound.
In iest and in earnest, here argued ye finde,
That husband and huswife togither must dwell,
And thereto the iudgement of wedded mans minde,
That husbandrie otherwise speedeth not well:
So somewhat more nowe I intende for to tell,
Of huswiferie like as of husbandrie tolde,
How huswifelie huswife helpes bring in the golde.

Thus endeth the booke of Husbandrie.

[Finis (1577).]

[1] they. 1577.

[2] you. 1577.

[3] you shall. 1577.

[4] you hap. 1577.

[5] quod. 1577.

[Pg 159]

The points of Huswiferie, vnited to
the comfort of Husbandrie, newly corrected
and amplified, with diuers good
lessons for housholders to recreate the
Reader, as by the Table at the end
hereof more plainlie may

Set forth by Thomas Tusser Gentleman.


To the right Honorable and my especiall good Ladie and Maistres, the Ladie Paget.[E424]

Though danger be mickle,
and fauour so fickle,
Yet dutie doth tickle
my fansie to wright:
Concerning how prettie,
how fine and how nettie,
Good huswife should iettie,[1]
from morning to night.
Not minding[2] by writing,
to kindle a spiting,
But shew by enditing,
as afterward told:
How husbandrie easeth,
to huswiferie pleaseth,
And manie purse greaseth
with siluer and gold.
[Pg 160]
For husbandrie wéepeth,
where huswiferie sléepeth,
And hardly he créepeth,
vp ladder to thrift:
That wanteth to bold him,
thrifts ladder to hold him,
Before it be told him,
he falles without shift.
Least many should feare me,
and others forsweare me,
Of troth I doo beare me
vpright as ye sée:
Full minded to looue all,
and not to reprooue all,
But onely to mooue all,
good huswiues to bée.
For if I should mind some,
or descant behind some,
And missing to find some,
displease so I mought:
Or if I should blend them,
and so to offend them,
What stur I should send them
I stand in a dought.
Though harmles ye[3] make it
and some doo well take it,
If others forsake it,
what pleasure were that?
Naught else but to paine me,
and nothing to gaine me,
But make them disdaine me
I wot ner for what.
Least some make a triall,
as clocke by the diall,
Some stand to deniall,
some murmur and grudge:
Giue iudgement I pray you,
for iustlie so may you,
So fansie, so say you,
I make you my iudge.
In time, ye shall try me,
by troth, ye shall spy me,
So finde, so set by me,
according to skill:
How euer trée groweth,
the fruit the trée showeth,[E425]
Your Ladiship knoweth,
my hart and good will.
Thogh fortune doth measure,
and I doo lacke treasure,
Yet if I may pleasure
your Honour with this:
Then will me to mend it,
or mend er ye send it,
Or any where lend it,
if ought be amis.
Your Ladiships Seruant,
Thomas Tusser.

[1] yettie. 1557.

[2] minded. 1577.

[3] I. 1577.

[Pg 161]


To the Reader.[1]

Now listen, good huswiues, what dooings are here
set foorth for a daie, as it should for a yere.
Both easie to follow, and soone to atchiue,
for such as by huswiferie looketh to thriue.[E426]
The forenoone affaires, till dinner (with some,)
then after noone dooings, till supper time come.
With breakfast and dinner time, sup, and to bed,
standes orderlie placed, to quiet thine hed.
The meaning is this, for a daie what ye see,
that monthlie and yeerlie continued must bee.
And hereby to gather (as prooue I intend),
that huswiuelie matters haue neuer an end.
I haue not, by heare say, nor reading in booke,
set out (peraduenture) that some cannot brooke,
Nor yet of a spite, to be dooing with enie,
but such as haue skared me many a penie.
If widow, both huswife and husband may be,
what cause hath a widower lesser than she?
Tis needfull that both of them looke well about:
too careles within, and too lasie without.
Now therefore, if well ye consider of this,
what losses and crosses comes dailie amis.
Then beare with a widowers pen as ye may:
though husband of huswiferie somewhat doth say.[E427]

[1] "First introduced in the edition of 1580" (M.).

[Pg 162]


The Preface to the booke of Huswiferie.

Take weapon away, of what force is a man?
Take huswife from husband, and what is he than?
As louers desireth together to dwell,
So husbandrie loueth good huswiferie well.
Though husbandrie seemeth to bring in the gaines,
Yet huswiferie labours seeme equall in paines.
Some respit to husbands the weather may send,
But huswiues affaires haue neuer an end.


As true as thy faith,
Thus huswiferie saith.

The praise of huswiferie.
I serve for a daie, for a weeke, for a yere,
For life time, for euer, while man dwelleth here.
For richer, for poorer, from North to the South,
For honest, for hardhead, or daintie of mouth.
For wed and vnwedded, in sicknes and health,
For all that well liueth, in good Commonwealth.
For citie, for countrie, for Court, and for cart,
To quiet the head, and to comfort the hart.

[Pg 163]


A description of Huswife and Huswiferie.[E428]

Of huswife doth huswiferie challenge that name,
of huswiferie huswife doth likewise the same,
Where husband and husbandrie ioineth with thease,
there wealthines gotten is holden with ease.
The name of a huswife what is it to say?
the wife of the house, to the husband a stay.
If huswife doth that, as belongeth to hur:
if husband be godlie,[1] there needeth no stur.
The huswife is she that to labour doth fall,
the labour of hir I doo huswiferie call.
If thrift by that labour be honestlie[2] got:
then is it good huswiferie, else is it not.
The woman the name of a huswife doth win,
by keeping hir house, and of dooings therein.
And she that with husband will quietly dwell,
must thinke on this lesson, and follow it well.

[1] wittie. 1577. Cf. post, ch. 100, st. 6.

[2] be sued or got. 1577.

[Finis (1577).]


Instructions to Huswiferie.[E429]

Serue God is the furst,
True loue is not wurst.
A dailie good lesson, of huswife in deede,
is God to remember, the better to speede.
An other good lesson, of huswiferie thought,
is huswife with husband to liue as she ought.
[Pg 164]
Wife comely no griefe,
Man out, huswife chiefe.
Though trickly to see to, be gallant to wiue,
yet comely and wise is the huswife to thriue.
When husband is absent, let huswife be chiefe,
and looke to their labour that eateth hir biefe.
Both out not allow,
Keepe house huswife thow.
Where husband and huswife be both out of place,
there seruants doo loiter, and reason their cace.[E430]
The huswife so named (of keeping the house,)
must tend on hir profit, as cat on the mouse.
Seeke home for rest,
For home is best.
As huswiues keepe home, and be stirrers about,
so speedeth their winnings, the yeere thorow out.
Though home be but homely, yet huswife is taught,
that home hath no fellow to such as haue aught.[E431]
¶ Vse all with skill,
Aske what ye will.
Good vsage with knowledge, and quiet withall,
make huswife to shine, as the sunne on the wall.
What husband refuseth all comely to haue,
that hath a good huswife, all willing to saue.
Be readie at neede,
All thine to feede.
The case of good huswiues, thus daily doth stand,
what euer shall chance, to be readie at hand.
This care hath a huswife all daie in hir hed,
that all thing in season be huswifelie fed.
By practise go muse,
How houshold to vse.
Dame practise is she that to huswife doth tell,
which way for to gouerne hir familie[E432] well.
Vse labourers gently, keepe this as a lawe,
make childe to be ciuill, keepe seruant in awe.
[Pg 165]
Who careles doe liue,
Occasion doe giue.
Haue euerie where a respect to thy waies,
that none of thy life any slander may raies.
What many doo knowe, though a time it be hid,
at length will abrode, when a mischiefe shall bid.
No neighbour reprooue,
Doe so to haue looue.
The loue of thy neighbour shall stand thee in steede,
the poorer, the gladder, to helpe at a neede.
Vse friendly thy neighbour, else trust him in this,
as he hath thy friendship, so trust vnto his.
¶ Strike nothing vnknowne,
Take heede to thine owne.
Reuenge not thy wrath vpon any mans beast,
least thine by like malice be bid to like feast.
What husband prouideth with monie his drudge,
the huswife must looke to, which waie it doth trudge.


A digression.

Now, out of the matter, this lesson I ad,
concerning cock crowing, what profit is had.
Experience teacheth, as true as a clock:
how winter night passeth, by marking the cock.
Cock croweth at midnight, times few aboue six,
with pause to his neighbour, to answere betwix.
At three a clock thicker, and then as ye knowe,
like all in to Mattens, neere daie they doo crowe.
Cocke crowing.
At midnight, at three, and an hower ere day,
they vtter their language, as well as they may.
Which who so regardeth what counsell they giue,
will better loue crowing, as long as they liue.
[Pg 166]
For being afraid,
Take heede good maid:
Marke crowing of cock,
For feare of a knock.
The first cock croweth.
Ho, Dame it is midnight: what rumbling is that?
The next cock croweth.[1]
Take heede to false harlots, and more, ye wot what.
If noise ye heare,
Looke all be cleare:
Least drabs doe noie thee,
And theeues destroie thee.
The first cock croweth.
Maides, three a clock,[E433] knede, lay your bucks,[E434] or go brew,
The next cock croweth.
And cobble and botch, ye that cannot buie new.
Till cock crow agen,
Both maidens and men:
Amend now with speede,
That mending doth neede.[2]
The first cock croweth.
Past fiue a clock, Holla: maid, sleeping beware,
The next cock croweth.
Least quickly your Mistres vncouer your bare.
Maides, vp I beseech yee,
Least Mistres doe breech yee:
To worke and away,
As fast as ye may.

[1] showeth, here and in stanzas 5 and 6. 1577.


Both mayden and man
mend now what ye can.
Leave gibber gabber
mend slibber slabber. 1577.

[Pg 167]



[Now listen, good huswiues, what doings are here
set out for a day as it should for a yere. 1577.]

Morning workes.[1]

No sooner some vp,
But nose is in cup.
Get vp in the morning as soone as thou wilt,
with ouerlong slugging good seruant is spilt.
Some slouens from sleeping no sooner get vp,
but hand is in aumbrie, and nose in the cup.
That early is donne,
Count huswifely wonne.
Morning workes.
Some worke in the morning may trimly be donne,
that all the day after can hardly be wonne.
Good husband without it is needfull there be,
good huswife within as needfull as he.
Cast dust into yard,
And spin and go card.
Sluts corners auoided shall further thy health,
much time about trifles shall hinder thy wealth.
Set some to peele hempe or else rishes to twine,
to spin and to card, or to seething of brine.
Grind mault for drinke,
See meate do not stinke.
Set some about cattle, some pasture to vewe,
some mault to be grinding against ye do brewe.
Some corneth, some brineth, some will not be taught,
where meate is attainted, there cookrie is naught.

[1] This and other sub-titles are not in 1577.

[Pg 168]


Breakefast doings.

To breakefast that come,
Giue erie one some.
Call seruants to breakefast by day starre appere,[E435]
a snatch and to worke, fellowes tarrie not here.
Let huswife be caruer, let[1] pottage be heate,
a messe to eche one, with a morsell of meate.
No more tittle tattle,
Go serue your cattle.
What tacke in a pudding, saith greedie gut wringer,
giue such ye wote what, ere a pudding he finger.
Let seruants once serued, thy cattle go serue,
least often ill seruing make cattle to sterue.

[1] see. 1577.


¶ Huswifely admonitions.

Thée for thriue.
Learne you that will thee,
This lesson of mee.[1]
No breakefast of custome prouide for to saue,
but onely for such as deserueth to haue.
No shewing of seruant what vittles in store,
shew seruant his labour, and shew him no more.
Of hauocke beware,
Cat nothing will spare.
Where all thing is common, what needeth a hutch?
where wanteth a sauer, there hauocke is mutch.
Where window is open, cat maketh a fray,
yet wilde cat with two legs is worse by my fay.
[Pg 169]
Looke well vnto thine,
Slut slouthfull must whine.
An eie in a corner who vseth to haue,
reuealeth a drab, and preuenteth a knaue.
Make maide to be clenly, or make hir crie creake,
and teach hir to stirre, when hir mistresse doth speake.
Let hollie wand threate,
Let fisgig be beate.
A wand in thy hand, though ye fight not at all,
makes youth to their businesse better to fall.
For feare of foole had I wist[2][E436] cause thee to waile,
let fisgig be taught to shut doore after taile.
Too easie the wicket,
Will still appease clicket.
With hir that will clicket make daunger to cope,
least quickly hir wicket seeme easie to ope.
As rod little mendeth where maners be spilt,
so naught will be naught say and do what thou wilt.
Fight seldome ye shall
But vse not to brall.
Much bralling with seruant, what man can abide?
pay home when thou fightest, but loue not to chide.
As order is heauenly where quiet is had,
so error is hell, or a mischiefe as bad.
What better a lawe
Than subjects in awe?
Such awe as a warning will cause to beware,
doth make the whole houshold the better to fare.
The lesse of thy counsell thy seruants doe knowe,
Their dutie the better such seruants shall showe.
[Pg 170]
Good musicke regard,
Good seruants reward.
Such seruants are oftenest painfull and good,
that sing in their labour, as birdes in the wood.
Good seruants hope iustly some friendship to feele,
and looke to haue fauour what time they do weele.
By once or twise
Tis time to be wise.
Take runagate Robin, to pitie his neede,
and looke to be filched, as sure as thy creede.
Take warning by once, that a worse do not hap,
foresight is the stopper of many a gap.
Some change for a shift,
Oft change, small thrift.
Make fewe of thy counsell to change for the best,
least one that is trudging infecteth the rest.
The stone that is rolling can gather no mosse,[E437]
for maister and seruant, oft changing is losse.
Both liberall sticketh,
Some prouender pricketh.
One liberall.
One dog for a hog, and one cat for a mouse,
one readie to giue is ynough in a house:
One gift ill accepted, keepe next in thy purse,
whom prouender pricketh are often the wurse.

[1] How daintie some be. 1573.

[2] "A wise man saith not, had I wist."—Uncertain Author in Tottel's Miscellany (p. 244, Arber's ed.).



Brew somewhat for thine,
Else bring vp no swine.
Where brewing is needfull, be brewer thy selfe,
what filleth the roofe will helpe furnish the shelfe:
In buieng of drinke, by the firkin or pot,
the tallie ariseth, but hog amendes not.[1]
[Pg 171]
Well brewed, worth cost,
Ill vsed, halfe lost.
One bushell well brewed, outlasteth some twaine,
and saueth both mault, and expences in vaine.[2]
Too new is no profite, too stale is as bad,
drinke dead or else sower makes laborer sad.[E438]
Remember good Gill,
Take paine with thy swill.
Séething of graines.
Seeth grains in more water, while grains be yet hot,
and stirre them in copper, as poredge in pot.
Such heating with straw, to haue offall good store,
both pleaseth and easeth, what would ye haue more?

[1] Score quickely ariseth, hog profiteth not. 1577.

[2] Two troubles for nothing, is cost to no gaine. 1577.



Newe bread is a driuell.
Much crust is as euill.
New bread is a waster, but mouldie is wurse,
what that way dog catcheth, that loseth the purse.
Much dowebake I praise not, much crust is as ill,
the meane is the Huswife, say nay if ye will.



Good cookerie craueth,
Good turnebroch saueth.
Good cooke to dresse dinner, to bake and to brewe,
deserues a rewarde, being honest and trewe.
Good diligent turnebroch and trustie withall,
is sometime as needfull as some in the hall.

[Pg 172]



Good dairie doth pleasure,
Ill dairie spendes treasure.
Good huswife in dairie, that needes not be tolde,
deserueth hir fee to be paid hir in golde.
Ill seruant neglecting what huswiferie saies,
deserueth hir fee to be paid hir with baies.[E440]
Good droie[E441] woorth much.[1]
Marke sluts and such.
Good droie to serue hog, to helpe wash, and to milke,
more needfull is truelie than some in their silke.
Though homelie be milker, let cleanlie be cooke,
for a slut and a slouen be knowne by their looke.
In dairie no cat,
Laie bane for a rat.
Traps for rats.
Though cat (a good mouser) doth dwell in a house,
yet euer in dairie haue trap for a mouse.
Take heede how thou laiest the bane for the rats,
for poisoning seruant, thy selfe and thy brats.

[1] Though droy be, etc. 1577.



No scouring for pride,
Spare kettle whole side.
Though scouring be needfull, yet scouring too mutch,
is pride without profit, and robbeth[1] thine hutch.
Keepe kettles from knocks, set tubs out of Sun,
for mending is costlie, and crackt is soone dun.

[1] rubbeth. 1573, 1577.

[Pg 173]



Take heede when ye wash,
Else run in the lash.
Maids, wash well and wring well, but beat ye wot how,
if any lack beating, I feare it be yow.
In washing by hand, haue an eie to thy boll,
for launders and millers, be quick of their toll.
Drie sunne, drie winde,
Safe binde, safe finde.
Go wash well, saith Sommer, with sunne I shall drie,
go wring well, saith Winter, with winde so shall I.
To trust without heede is to venter a ioint,
giue tale and take count, is a huswifelie point.
Where many be packing,
Are manie things lacking.
Where hens fall a cackling, take heede to their nest,
where drabs fall a whispring, take heede to the rest.
Through negligent huswifes, are many things lacking,
and Gillet suspected will quickly be packing.



Ill malting is theft,
Wood dride hath a weft.
House may be so handsome, and skilfulnes such,
to make thy owne malt, it shall profit thee much.
Som drieth with strawe, and some drieth with wood,
wood asketh more charge, and nothing so good.[E442]
Take heede to the kell,
Sing out as a bell.
Be suer no chances to fier can drawe,
the wood, or the furzen, the brake or the strawe.
Let Gillet be singing, it doth verie well,
to keepe hir from sleeping and burning the kell.
[Pg 174]
Best dride best speedes,
Ill kept, bowd breedes.
Malt being well speered, the more it will cast,
malt being well dried, the longer will last.
Long kept in ill soller, (vndoubted thou shalt,)
through bowds without number loose quickly thy malt.[E443]


Dinner matters.

For hunger or thirst,
Serue cattle well first.
Dinner time.
By noone[E444] see your dinner, be readie and neate,
let meate tarrie seruant, not seruant his meate.
Plough cattle a baiting, call seruant to dinner,
the thicker togither, the charges the thinner.
Togither is best,
For hostis and gest.
Due season is best, altogither is gay,
dispatch hath no fellow, make short and away.
Beware of Gill laggoose, disordring thy house,
mo dainties who catcheth, than craftie fed mouse!
Let such haue ynough,
That follow the plough.
Giue seruant no dainties, but giue him ynough,
too many chaps walking,[E445] do begger the plough.
Poore seggons halfe starued worke faintly and dull,
and lubbers doo loiter, their bellies too full.
Giue neuer too much,
To lazie and such.
Feede lazie that thresheth a flap and a tap,
like slothfull, that all day be stopping a gap.
Some litherly lubber more eateth than twoo,
yet leaueth vndone that another will doo.
[Pg 175]
Where nothing will last,
Spare such as thou hast.
Some cutteth thy linnen, some spoileth[2] their broth,
bare table to some doth as well as a cloth.
Treene dishes be homely, and yet not to lack,
where stone is no laster take tankard and iack.
Knap boy on the thums,
And saue him his crums.
That pewter is neuer for manerly feastes,
that daily doth serue so vnmanerly beastes.
Some gnaweth and leaueth, some crusts and some crums,
eat such their own leuings, or gnaw their own thums.
Serue God euer furst,
Take nothing at wurst.
Grace before and after meate.
At Dinner, at Supper, at morning, at night,
giue thankes vnto God, for his gifts so in[3] sight.
Good husband and huswife, will sometime alone,
make shift with a morsell and picke of a bone.
Inough thou art tolde,
Too much will not holde.
Three dishes well dressed, and welcome withall,
both pleaseth thy friend and becommeth thine hall.
Enough is a plentie,[E446] too much is a pride,
the plough with ill holding, goes quicklie aside.

[1] Stanzas 3-12 are not in 1577.

[2] spilleth. 1577.

[3] in thy. 1577.


Afternoone workes.

Make companie breake,
Go cherish the weake.
Afternoone workes.
When Dinner is ended, set seruants to wurke,
and follow such fellowes[1] as loueth to lurke.
To seruant in sicknesse see nothing ye grutch,
a thing of a trifle shall comfort him mutch.
[Pg 176]
Who manie do feede,
Saue much they had neede.
Put chippings[E447] in dippings, vse parings to saue,
fat capons or chickens that lookest to haue.
Saue droppings and skimmings, how euer ye doo,
for medcine for cattell, for cart and for shoo.
Leane capon vnmeete,
Deere fed is vnsweete.
Such ofcorne as commeth giue wife to hir fee,
feede willingly such as do helpe to feede thee.
Though fat fed is daintie, yet this I thee warne,
be cunning in fatting for robbing thy barne.
Peece hole to defende.
Things timely amende.
Good semsters be sowing of fine pretie knackes,
good huswifes be mending and peecing their sackes.
Though making and mending be huswifely waies,
yet mending in time is the huswife to praies.
Buie newe as is meete,
Marke blanket and sheete.
Though Ladies may rend and buie new ery day,
good huswifes must mend and buie new as they may.
Call quarterly seruants to court and to leete,[E448]
write euerie Couerlet, Blanket, and Sheete.
Shift slouenly elfe,
Be gayler thy selfe.
Though shifting too oft be a theefe in a house,
yet shift slut and slouen for feare of a louse.
Graunt doubtfull no key of his chamber in purse,
least chamber doore lockt be to theeuerie a nurse.
Saue feathers for gest,
These other rob chest.
Saue feathers.
Saue wing for a thresher, when Gander doth die,
saue feather of all thing, the softer to lie.
Much spice is a theefe, so is candle and fier,
sweete sauce is as craftie as euer was frier.
[Pg 177]
Wife make thine owne candle,
Spare pennie to handle.
Candle making.
Prouide for thy tallow, ere frost commeth in,
and make thine owne candle, ere winter begin.
If pennie for all thing be suffred to trudge,
trust long, not to pennie, to haue him thy drudge.

[1] marchants. 1577.


Euening workes.

Time drawing to night,
See all things go right.
Euening workes.
When hennes go to roost go in hand to dresse meate,
serue hogs and to milking and some to serue neate.
Where twaine be ynow, be not serued with three,
more knaues in a companie worser they bee.
Make lackey to trudge,
Make seruant thy drudge.
For euerie trifle leaue ianting thy nag,
but rather make lackey of Jack boie thy wag.
Make seruant at night lug in wood or a log,
let none come in emptie but slut and thy dog.
False knaue readie prest,
All safe is the best.
Where pullen vse nightly to pearch in the yard,
there two legged foxes keepe watches and ward.
See cattle well serued, without and within,
and all thing at quiet ere supper begin.
Take heede it is needeful,
True pittie is meedeful.
No clothes in garden, no trinkets without,
no doore leaue vnbolted, for feare of a dout.
Thou woman whom pitie becommeth the best,
graunt all that hath laboured time to take rest.

[Pg 178]


Supper matters.

Vse mirth and good woorde,
At bed and at boorde.
Supper time huswiferie.
Provide for thy husband, to make him good cheere,
make merrie togither, while time ye be heere.
At bed and at boord, howsoeuer befall,
what euer God sendeth be merrie withall.
No brawling make,
No ielousie take.
No taunts before seruants, for hindring of fame,
no iarring too loude for auoyding of shame.
As fransie and heresie roueth togither,
so iealousie leadeth a foole ye wot whither.
Tend such as ye haue,
Stop talkatiue knaue.
Yong children and chickens would euer be eating,
good seruants looke dulie for gentle intreating.
No seruant at table vse sausly to talke,
least tongue set at large out of measure do walke.
No snatching at all,
Sirs, hearken now all.
No lurching,[E449] no snatching, no striuing at all,
least one go without and another haue all.
Declare after Supper, take heede therevnto,
what worke in the morning ech seruant shall do.

[Pg 179]


After supper matters.

Thy soule hath a clog,
Forget not thy dog.
Workes after supper.
Remember those children whose parents be poore,
which hunger, yet dare not craue[1] at thy doore.
Thy Bandog[E450] that serueth for diuerse mishaps,
forget not to giue him thy bones and thy scraps.
Make keies to be keepers,
To bed ye sleepers.
Where mouthes be many, to spend that thou hast,
set keies to be keepers, for spending too fast.
To bed after supper let drousie go sleepe,
least knaue in the darke to his marrow do creepe.
Keepe keies as thy life,
Feare candle good wife.
Such keies lay vp safe, ere ye take ye to rest,
of dairie, of buttrie, of cubboord and chest.
Feare candle in hailoft, in barne, and in shed,
feare flea smocke and mendbreech, for burning their bed.
See doore lockt fast,
Two keies make wast.
A doore without locke is a baite for a knaue,
a locke without key is a foole that will haue.
One key to two locks, if it breake is a greefe,
two keies to one locke in the ende is a theefe.
Night workes troubles hed,
Locke doores and to bed.
The day willeth done whatsoeuer ye bid,
the night is a theefe, if ye take not good hid.
Wash dishes, lay leauens, saue fire and away,
locke doores and to bed, a good huswife will say.
[Pg 180]
To bed know thy guise,
To rise do likewise.
Bed time.
In winter at nine, and in sommer at ten,
to bed after supper both maidens and men.
Time to rise.
In winter at fiue a clocke, seruant arise,
in sommer at foure is verie good guise.[E451]
Loue so as ye may
Loue many a day.
Be lowly not sollen, if ought go amisse,
what wresting may loose thee, that winne with a kisse.
Both beare and forebeare now and then as ye may,
then, wench God a mercie, thy husband will say.

[1] to. 1577.


The ploughmans feasting daies.

This would not be slept,
Old guise must be kept.
Good huswiues, whom God hath enriched ynough,
forget not the feastes that belong to the plough.
The meaning is onelie to ioie and be glad,
for comfort with labour is fit to be had.
Plough Monday.[E452]
Plough Monday, next after that Twelftide is past,
bids out with the plough, the woorst husband is last.
If ploughman get hatchet or whip to the skreene,
maides loseth their cock if no water be seene.[E453]
Essex and Suffolke.
At Shroftide to shrouing, go thresh the fat hen,
if blindfild can kill hir, then giue it thy men.
Maides, fritters and pancakes ynow see ye make:
let slut haue one pancake, for companie sake.
[Pg 181]
Sheepe shearing.
Wife make vs a dinner, spare flesh neither corne,
make wafers and cakes, for our sheepe must be shorne.
At sheepe shearing neighbours none other thing craue,
but good cheere and welcome like neighbours to haue.
The wake day.[E455]
Fill ouen full of flawnes,[E456] Ginnie passe not for sleepe,
to morow thy father his wake day will keepe.
Then euerie wanton may daunce at hir will,
both Tomkin with Tomlin, and Jankin with Gill.
Haruest home.
For all this good feasting, yet art thou not loose,
till ploughman thou giuest his haruest home goose.[E457]
Though goose go in stubble, I passe not for that,
let goose haue a goose, be she leane, be she fat.
Essex and Suffolke.
Seede cake.
Wife, some time this weeke, if the wether hold cleere,
an end of wheat sowing we make for this yeere.
Remember you therefore though I doo it not:
the seede Cake, the Pasties, and Furmentie pot.[E458]
Twise a week roast.
Good ploughmen looke weekly, of custome and right,
for roast meat on Sundaies and Thursdaies at night.
This dooing and keeping such custome and guise,
they call thee good huswife, they loue thee likewise.

[Pg 182]


The good huswifelie Physicke.

Good huswiues prouides, ere an sicknes doo come,
of sundrie good things in hir house to haue some.
Good Aqua composita,[E459] Vineger tart,
Rose water and treakle, to comfort the hart.
Cold herbes in hir garden for agues that burne,
that ouer strong heat to good temper may turne.
While Endiue and Suckerie, with Spinnage ynough,
all such with good pot herbes should follow the plough.
Get water of Fumentorie, Liuer to coole,
and others the like, or els lie like a foole.
Conserue of the Barberie, Quinces and such,
with Sirops that easeth the sickly so much.
Aske Medicus counsell, ere medcine ye make,
and honour that man, for necessities sake.
Though thousands hate physick, because of the cost,
yet thousands it helpeth, that else should be lost.
Good diet.
Good broth and good kéeping do much now and than,
good diet with wisedome best comforteth man.
In health to be stirring shall profit thée best,
in sicknes hate trouble, séeke quiet and rest.
Thinke on thy soule and haue a good hope.
Remember thy soule, let no fansie preuaile,
make readie to Godward, let faith neuer quaile.
The sooner thy selfe thou submittest to God,
the sooner he ceaseth to scourge with his rod.

[Pg 183]


The good motherlie nurserie.

Good huswiues take paine, and doo count it good luck,
to make their owne brest their owne childe to giue suck.
Though wrauling and rocking be noisome so neare,
yet lost by ill nursing is woorser to heare.
But one thing I warne thee, let huswife be nurse,
least husband doo find thée too franke with his purse.
What hilback and filbellie maketh away,
that helpe to make good, or else looke for a fraie.
Giue childe that is fitly, giue babie the big,
giue hardnes to youth and to roperipe a twig.
Wee find it not spoken so often for naught,
that children were better vnborne than vntaught,
Some cockneies[E460] with cocking are made verie fooles,
fit neither for prentise, for plough, nor for schooles.
Teach childe to aske blessing, serue God, and to church,
then blesse as a mother, else blesse him with burch.
Thou huswife thus dooing, what further shall néede?
but all men to call thée good mother in déede.


Thinke on the poore.

Remember the poore, that for Gods sake doo call,
for God both rewardeth and blesseth withall.
Take this in good part, whatsoeuer thou bee:
and wish me no woorse than I wish vnto thee.

[Pg 184]


A comparison betweene good huswiferie and euill.[E461]

Comparing togither, good huswife with bad,
The knowledge of either, the better is had.
Ill huswiferie lieth
till nine of the clock.
Good huswiferie trieth
to rise with the cock.
Ill huswiferie tooteth,
to make hir selfe braue.[E462]
Good huswiferie looketh
what houshold must haue.
Ill huswiferie trusteth
to him and to hir.
Good huswiferie lusteth
hir selfe for to stir.
Ill huswiferie careth
for this nor for that.
Good huswiferie spareth
for feare ye wot what.
Ill huswiferie pricketh
hir selfe vp in pride.
Good huswiferie tricketh
hir house as a bride.
Ill huswiferie othing
or other must craue.
Good huswiferie nothing,
but needfull will haue.
Ill huswiferie mooueth
with gossep to spend.
Good huswiferie loueth
hir houshold to tend.
Ill huswiferie wanteth
with spending too fast.
Good huswiferie canteth[1][E463]
the lenger to last.
Ill huswiferie easeth
hir selfe with vnknowne.
Good huswiferie pleaseth
hir selfe with hir owne.
Ill huswiferie brooketh
mad toies in hir hed.
Good huswiferie looketh
that all things be fed.
Ill huswiferie bringeth
a shilling to naught.
Good huswiferie singeth,
hir cofers full fraught.
Ill huswiferie rendeth,
and casteth aside.
Good huswiferie mendeth,
else would it go wide.
[Pg 185]
Ill huswiferie sweepeth
her linnen to gage.
Good huswiferie keepeth,
to serue hir in age.
Ill huswiferie craueth
in secret to borow.
Good huswiferie saueth
to day for to morow.
Ill huswiferie pineth,
not hauing to eate.
Good huswiferie dineth,
with plentie of meate.
Ill huswiferie letteth
the Diuell take all.
Good huswiferie setteth
good brag of a small.
Good huswife good fame hath of best in the towne,
Ill huswife ill name hath of euerie clowne.

[1] scanteth. 1577.

Thus endeth the booke of Huswiferie.


For men a perfect warning
How childe shall come by larning.

All you that faine would learne the perfect waie,
To haue your childe in Musick something séene,
Aske nature first what thereto she doth saie,
Ere further suite ye make to such a Quéene.
For doubtlesse Grossum caput is not he
Of whom the learned Muses séene will be.[E464]
Once tride that nature trim hath done hir part,
And Ladie Musick farre[1] in loue withall,
Be wise who first doth teach thy childe that Art,
Least homelie breaker mar fine ambling ball.[E465]
Not rod in mad braines hand is that can helpe,
But gentle skill doth make the proper whelpe.
[Pg 186]
Where choise is hard, count good for well a fine,[E466]
Skill mixt with will, is he that teacheth best:
Let this suffice for teaching childe of thine,
Choose quickly well for all the lingring rest.
Mistaught at first how seldome prooueth well!
Trim taught, O God, how shortly doth excell!
Although as ships must tarrie winde and tide,
And perfect howers abide their stinted time;
So likewise, though of learning dailie tride,
Space must be had ere wit may thereto clime.
Yet easie steps, and perfect way to trust,
Doth cause good spéede, confesse of force we must.
Thus in the childe though wit ynough we finde,
And teacher good néere hand or other where,
And time as apt as may be thought with minde,
Nor cause in such thing much to doubt or feare.
Yet cocking Mams,[E467] and shifting Dads[E468] from schooles,
Make pregnant wits to prooue vnlearned fooles.
Ere learning come, to haue first art thou taught,
Apt learning childe, apt time that thing to frame,
Apt cunning man to teach, else all is naught,
Apt parents, glad to bring to passe the same.
On such apt ground the Muses loue to bilde,
This lesson learne; adue else learned child.

[1]? faire [1614].

[In the edition of 1573, The Sonnet to Lady Paget, which follows the Posies, is placed here.]

[Pg 187]


The description of a womans age by vi. times xiiij yeeres prentiship, with a lesson to the same.

14.    Two first seuen yeeres, for a rod they doe whine,
28.    Two next, as a perle in the world they doe shine,
42.    Two next, trim beautie beginneth to swerue,
56.    Two next, for matrones or drudges they serue,
70.    Two next, doth craue a staffe for a stay,
84.    Two next, a beere to fetch them away.

A Lesson

Then purchase some pelfe,
by fiftie and thrée:
or buckle thy selfe,
a drudge for to bée.


The Inholders posie.[1]

At meales my friend who vitleth here, and sitteth with his host,
Shall both be sure of better chere, and scape with lesser cost.[E469]
But he that will attendance haue, a chamber by himselfe,
Must more regard what pains do craue than passe of worldly pelfe.
[Pg 188]
Let no man looke to purchase linne[E470] with pinching by the waie,
But laie before he takes his Inne to make his purse to paie.
For nothing paie and nothing praie, in Inne it is the gise,
Where no point gain, there no point pain, think this if you be wise.
For toiling much and spoiling more, great charge smal gains or none,
Soone sets thine host at needams shore,[2][E471] to craue the beggers bone.
Foreséeing this, come day or night, take vp what place ye please.
Vse mine as thine, let fortune spight, and boldly take thine ease.

[1] Not in edition of 1573.

[2] A pun recorded by Ray. Needham is in Suffolk (M.).


Certaine Table Lessons.

Friend, eat lesse, and drinke lesse,[1] and buie thee a knife,
else looke for a caruer not alway too rife.
Some kniueles their daggers for brauerie weare,
that often for surfetting neede not to feare.[E472]
At dinner and supper the table doth craue
good fellowly neighbour good manner to haue.
Aduise thee well therefore, ere tongue be too free,
or slapsauce be noted too saucie to bee.
If anything wanteth or seemeth amis,
to call for or shew it, good maner it is.
But busie fault finder, and saucie withall,
is roister like ruffen, no manner at all.
[Pg 189]
Some cutteth the napkin, some trencher will nick,
some sheweth like follie, in many a trick.
Let such apish[2] bodie so toieng at meate,
go toie with his nodie, like ape in the streate.[E473]
Some commeth vnsent for, not for thy good cheere,
but sent[3] as a spiall, to listen and heere.
Which being once knowne, for a knaue let him go,
for knaue will be knauish, his nature is so.

[1] eateles and drinkles. 1577.

[2] Let apishle. 1577.

[3] bent. 1577.


Lessons for waiting servants.

One diligent seruiture, skilfull to waight,
more comelieth thy table than other some eight,
That stand for to listen, or gasing about,
not minding their dutie, within nor without.
Such waiter is fautie that standeth so by,
vnmindful of seruice, forgetting his ey.
If maister to such giue a bone for to gnaw,
he doth but his office, to teach such a daw.
Such seruiture also deserueth a check,
that runneth out fisging[E474] with meat in his beck.
Such rauening puttocks for vittles so trim,
would haue a good maister to puttock with him.
Who daily can suffer, or else can afoord,
his meat so vp snatched that comes from his boord?
So tossed[1] with cormorants, here and there some,
and others to want it that orderlie come?
Good seruiture waieth (once dinner begon,)
what asketh attendance and what to be don.
So purchasing maister a praise with the best,
gets praise to himselfe, both of maister and gest.

[1] toesed. 1577.

[Pg 190]


Husbandly posies for the hall.

Friend, here I dwell, and here I haue a little worldly pelfe,
Which on my friend I kéepe to spend, as well as on my selfe.
What euer fare you hap to finde, take welcome for the best,
That hauing then disdaine thou not, for wanting of the rest.
Backbiting[E475] talk that flattering blabs know wily how to blenge,
The wise doth note, the friend[E476] doth hate, the enmie will reuenge.
The wise will spend or giue or lend, yet kéepe to haue in store,
If fooles may haue from hand to mouth, they passe vpon no more.
Where ease is sought, at length we sée, there plentie waxeth scant,
Who careles liues go borow must, or else full often want.
The world doth think the welthy man is he that least shall néed,
But true it is the godlie[1] man is he that best shall spéed.

[1] Cf. ante, ch. 72, st. 2.


Posies for the parler.

As hatred is the serpents noisome rod,
So friendship is the louing gift of God.
The dronken friend is friendship very euill,
The frantike friend is friendship for the Deuill.
The quiet friend all one in word and déede
Great comfort is, like ready gold at néede.
[Pg 191]
With bralling fooles that wrall for euerie wrong,
Firme friendship neuer can continue long.
In time that man shall seldome friendship mis,
That waith what thing touch kept in friendship is.
Oft times a friend is got with easie cost,
Which vsed euill is oft as quickly lost.
Hast thou a friend, as hart may wish at will?
Then vse him so to haue his friendship still.
Wouldst haue a friend, wouldst knowe what friend is best?
Haue God thy friend, who passeth all the rest.


Posies for the gests chamber.

The slouen and the careles man, the roinish[E477] nothing nice,
To lodge in chamber comely deckt, are seldome suffred twice.
With curteine som make scaberd clene, with couerlet their shoo,
All dirt and mire some wallow bed, as spanniels vse to doo.
Though bootes and spurs be nere so foule, what passeth some thereon?
What place they foule, what thing they teare, by tumbling thervpon.
Foule male some cast on faire boord, be carpet nere so cléene,
what maners careles maister hath, by knaue his man is séene.
Some make the chimnie chamber pot to smell like filthie sink,
Yet who so bold, so soone to say, fough, how these houses stink?
[Pg 192]
They therefore such as make no force what comly thing they spil,
Must haue a cabben like themselues, although against their wil.
But gentlemen will gently doe where gentlenes is sheawd,
Obseruing this, with loue abide, or else hence all beshreawd.


Posies for thine owne bed chamber.

What wisdom more, what better life, than pleseth God to send?
what worldly goods, what longer vse, than pleseth God to lend?
What better fare than well content, agréeing with thy wealth?[1]
what better gest, than trustie friend, in sicknes and in health?
What better bed than conscience good,[2] to passe the night with sléepe?
what better worke than daily care fro sinne thy selfe to kéepe?
What better thought, than think on God and daily him to serue?
What better gift than to the poore that ready be to sterue?
What greater praise of God and man, than mercie for to shew?[3]
who merciles shall mercie finde, that mercie shewes to few?
What worse despaire, than loth to die for feare to go to hell?
what greater faith than trust in God, through Christ in heauen to dwell?

[1] what mirth to godly welth. 1577.

[2] quiet rest. 1577.


----than hatred to forsake
What merciles shall mercy get, that mercy none will take. 1577.
[1573 M.].

[Pg 193]


A Sonet to the Ladie Paget.

Some pleasures take,
and cannot giue,
but onely make
poore thanks their shift:
Some meaning well,
in debt doo liue,
and cannot tell
how else to shift.
Some knock and faine
would ope the doore,
to learne the vaine
good turne to praise:
Some shew good face,
and be but poore,
yet haue a grace,
good fame to raise.
Some owe and giue,
yet still in det,
and so must liue,
for aught I knowe:
Some wish to pay,
and cannot get,
but night and day
still more must owe.
Euen so must I, for seruice past,
Still wish you good while life doth last.


Principall points of Religion.

To praie to God continually,
To learne to know him rightfully.
To honour God in Trinitie,
The Trinitie in vnitie.
The Father in his maiestie,
The Sonne in his humanitie,
The holie Ghosts benignitie,
Three persons, one in Deitie.
To serue him alway holily,
To aske him all thing needfully,
[Pg 194]
To praise him in all companie,[1]
To loue him alway hartilie,[2]
To dread him alway christianlie,[3]
To aske him mercie penitently,[4]
To trust him alway faithfully,
To obey him alway willingly,
To abide him alway patiently,
To thanke him alway thankfully,
To liue here alway vertuously,
To vse thy neighbour honestly,
To looke for death still presently,[E478]
To helpe the poore in miserie,
To hope for heauens felicitie,
To haue faith hope and charitie,
To count this life but vanitie:
be points of Christianitie.

[1] alway worthely. 1577.

[2] steadfastlie. 1573 (M.), 1577.

[3] fearfullie. 1573 (M.), 1577.

[4] heartilie. 1573 (M.), 1577.


The Authors beleefe.

God the Father.
This is my stedfast Créede, my faith, and all my trust,
That in the heauens there is a God, most mightie, milde and iust.
A God aboue all gods, a King aboue all kings,
The Lord of lords, chiefe gouernour of heauen and earthly things.
Maker of Heauen.
That power hath of life, of death, of heauen and hell,
That all thing made as pleaseth him, so woonderfull to tell:
That made the hanging Skies, so deckt with diuers lights,
Of darknes made the chéerfull daies, and all our restfull nights.
[Pg 195]
The earth.
That clad this earth with herbe, with trées, and sundrie fruites,
With beast, with bird, both wild and tame, of strange and sundrie suites:
That intermixt the same with mines like veines of Ore,
Of siluer, golde, of precious stones, and treasures many more.
The waters, frost and snowe.
That ioyned brookes to dales, to hilles fresh water springs,
With riuers swéete along the méedes, to profit many things:
That made the hoarie frosts, the flakie snowes so trim,
The honie deawes, the blustering windes, to serue as pleaseth him.
The seas.
That made the surging seas, in course to ebbe and flo,
That skilfull man with sailing ship, mought trauell to and fro:
And stored so the same, for mans vnthankfull sake,
That euery nation vnder heauen mought thereby profit take.
The soul of man.
That gaue to man a soule, with reason how to liue,
That doth to him and all things else, his blessing dailie giue:
That is not séene, yet séeth how man doth runne his race,
Whose dailie workes both good and bad, stand knowne before his face.
Thunder and plagues.
That sendeth thundring claps, like terrours out of hell,
That man may know a God there is, that in the heauens doth dwel:
That sendeth threatning plagues, to kéepe our liues in awe,
His benefites if we forget, or do contemne his lawe.
Full of mercie.
That dailie hateth sinne, and loueth vertue well,
And is the God of Abraham, Isac, and Israell,
That doth displeasure take, when we his lawes offend,
And yet amids his heauie wrath, his mercie doth extend.
[Pg 196]
Christ the Sonne.
This is that Lord of hostes, the father of vs all,
The maker of what ere was made, my God on whom I call:
Which for the loue of man, sent downe his onelie sonne,
Begot of him before the worldes were any whit begonne.
Christes birth. Christ, God and man.
This entred Maries wombe, as faith affirmeth sure,
Conceiued by the holy Ghost, borne of that virgine pure;
This was both God and man, of Jewes the hoped king,
And liued here, saue onely sinne, like man in euerie thing.
Christ, our Messias.
This is that virgins childe, that same most holie Preist,
The lamb of God, the prophet great, whom scripture calleth Christ,
This that Messias was, of whom the Prophet spake,
That should tread down the serpents head and our attonement make.
Christes passion.
This Judas did betray, to false dissembling Jewes,
Which vnto Pilat being Judge, did falsely him accuse:
Who (through that wicked Judge) and of those Jewes despight,
Condemned and tormented was, with all the force they might.
To liuing wight more euill, what could such wretches do?
More pearcing wounds, more bitter pains, than they did put him to?
They crowned him with thorne, that was the king of kings,
That sought to saue the soule of man, aboue all worldly things.
Christes death.
This was that Pascall lambe whose loue for vs so stood,
That on the mount of Caluerie,[1] for vs did shed his blood:
Where hanging on the Crosse, no shame he did forsake,
Till death giuen him by pearcing speare, an ende of life did make.
[Pg 197]
Christes buriall.
Christes descension.
This Ioseph séeing dead, the bodie thence did craue,
And tooke it forthwith from the crosse, and laid it in his graue,
Downe thence he went to hell, in vsing there his will,[E479]
His power[2] I meane, his slained corps in tumb remaining still.
Christes resurrection.
Christes ascension.
From death to life againe, the third day this did rise,
And séene[E480] on earth to his elect, times oft in sundrie wise:
And after into heauen, ascend he did in sight,
And sitteth on the right hand there, of God the father of might.
Christ shall be our iudge.
Where for vs wretches all, his father he doth pray,
To haue respect vnto his death, and put our sinnes away:
From thence with sounded trump, which noise all flesh shall dread,
He shall returne with glorie againe, to iudge the quicke and dead.
The Iudges sentence.
Then shall that voice be heard, Come, come, ye good to mée,
Hence, hence to hell you workers euill, where paine shall euer bée:
This is that louing Christ, whom I my Sauiour call,
And onely put my trust in him, and in none else at all.
God the holy Ghost.
In God the holy Ghost, I firmely do belieue,
Which from the father and the sonne a blessed[3] life giue,
Which by the Prophets spake, which doth all comfort send,
Which I do trust shall be my guide, when this my life shall ende.
The Catholike Church.
A holy catholike Church, on earth I graunt there is,
And those which frame their liues by that, shall neuer do[4] amis:
The head whereof is Christ, his word the chiefest post:
Preseruer of this temple great, is God the holy Ghost.
[Pg 198]
The Communion of Saints.
I do not doubt there is a multitude of Saints,
More good is don resembling them, than shewing them our plaints:
Their faith and workes in Christ, that glorie them did giue,
Which glorie we shall likewise haue, if likewise we do liue.
Forgiueness of sinnes.
At God of heauen there is, forgiuenesse of our sinnes,
Through Christes death, through faith in it, and through none other ginnes:
If we repentant here, his mercie dailie craue,
Through stedfast hope and faith in Christ, forgiuenes we shall haue.
Mans resurrection.
I hope and trust vpon the rising of the flesh,
This corps of mine that first must die, shall rise againe afresh:
The soule and bodie euen then, in one shall ioyned bée,
As Christ did rise from death to life, euen so through Christ shall wée.
Life euerlasting.
As Christ is glorified, and neuer more shall die,
As Christ ascended into heauen, through Christ euen so shall I:
As Christ I count my head, and I a member of his,
So God I trust for Christes sake, shall settle me in blis.
Thus here we learne of God, that there be persons thrée,
The Father, Sonne, the holy Ghost, one God in trinitée,
In substance all like one, one God, one Lord, one might,
Whose persons yet we do diuide, and so we may by right.
As God the Father is the maker of vs all,
So God the Sonne redéemer is, to whom for helpe we call,
And God the holy Ghost, the soule of man doth winne,
By moouing hir to waile for grace, ashamed of hir sinne.
[Pg 199]
This is that God of gods, whom euerie soule should loue,
Whom all mens hearts should quake for feare his wrath on them to moue:
That this same mightie God, aboue all others chiefe,
Shall saue my soule from dolefull Hell, is all my whole beliefe.

[1] Caluerine. 1577.

[2] soule. 1577.

[3] proceeding. 1577.

[4] speede. 1577.


Of the omnipotencie of God, and debilitie of man.

O God thou glorious God, what god is like to thée?
What life, what strength is like to thine, as al the world may see?
The heauens, the earth, the seas, and all thy workes therein,
Do shew (to who thou wouldst to know)[E481] what thou hast euer bin.
But all the thoughts of man, are bent to wretched euill,
Man doth commit idolatrie bewitched of the Deuill.
What euill is left vndone, where man may haue his will,
Man euer was an hypocrite, and so continues still.
What these 4 principal diuels do signifie.
What daily watch is made, the soule of man to slea,
By Lucifer, by Belzabub, Mammon, and Asmodea?
In diuelish pride, in wrath, in coueting too much,
In fleshly lust the time is spent, the life of man is such.
The ioy that man hath here, is as a sparke of fier,
His acts be like the smoldring smoke, himselfe like dirt and mier.
His strength euen as a réede, his age much like a flower,
His breth or life is but a puffe, vncertaine euerie hower.[E482]
But for the holy Ghost, and for his giftes of grace,
The death of Christ, thy mercie great, man were in wofull case.
O graunt us therefore Lord, to amend that is amisse,
And when from hence we do depart, to rest with thee in blisse.

[Pg 200]


Of Almes deedes.

Eleemosyna prodest homini in vita, in morte, & post mortem.

Out of S. Augustine.
For onely loue to God, more Christian like to liue,
And for a zeale to helpe the poore, thine almes daily giue.
Let gift no glorie looke,[E483] nor euill possesse thy minde:
And for a truth these profites thrée, through almes shalt thou finde.
1 First here the holy Ghost shall daily through his grace,
Prouoke[E484] thée to repentant life, Gods mercie to embrace.
2 Of goods and friends (by death) when thou thy leaue must take,
Thine almes déedes shall claspe thy soule, and neuer it forsake.
3 When God shall after death, call soone for thine account,
thine alms then through faith in Christ, shal al things els surmount.
But yet for any déede, put thou no trust therein,
but put thy trust in God (through Christ) to pardon thée thy sin.
For else as cackling hen with noise bewraies hir nest,
Euen so go thou and blaze thy déeds, and lose thou all the rest.

[Pg 201]


Of malus homo.

Malus homo, out of S. Augustine.

Of naughtie man, I read, two sundrie things are ment,
The ton is man, the other naught, which ought him to repent.
The man we ought to loue, bicause of much therein,
The euill in him we ought to hate, euen as a filthie sin.
So doth thy daily sinnes the heauenly Lord offend,
But when thou dost repent the same, his wrath is at an end.


Of two sorts of people.

Of two sorts of men, the tone good, and tother bad, out of S. Augustine.

Since first the world began, there was and shall be still,
Of humane kind two sundrie sorts, thon good and thother ill:
Which till the iudgement day, shall here togither dwell,
But then the good shall vp to heauen, the bad shall downe to hell.


Of what force the devil is if he be resisted.

Diabolo cùm resistitur, est vt formica: Cùm
verò eius suggestio recipitur, fortis est vt leo.
Out of S. Augustine.
When Sathan we resist, a Pismier shall he be,
But when we séeme to giue him place, a Lion then is he.

[Pg 202]


Eight of S. Barnards verses, both in Latine and English with one note to them both.[1][E485]

Cur mundus militat, sub vana gloria,
Cuius prosperitas, est transitoria?
Tam citò labitur, eius potentia,
Quàm vasa figuli, quæ sunt fragilia?
Why[2] so triumphes the world, in pompe and glorie vaine,
Whose state so happie thought, so fickle[3] doth remaine?
Whose brauerie slipprie stands, and doth so soone decaie,
As doth the potters pan, compact of brittle claie?
Plus crede literis, scriptis in glacie,
Quàm mundi fragilis, vanæ fallaciæ,
Fallax in præmijs, virtutis specie,
Quæ nunquam habuit tempus fiduciæ.
More credite sée thou giue, to letters wrote in ise,
Than vnto vaine deceits, of brittle worlds deuise.
In gifts to vertue due, beguiling many one,
Yet those same neuer haue long time to hope vpon.
Magis credendum est, viris fallacibus,
Quàm mundi miseris prosperitatibus,
Falsis insanijs et voluptatibus,
Falsis quoque studijs et vanitatibus.
To false dissembling men more trust is to be had,
Than to the prosperous state of wretched world so bad:
What with voluptuousnes, and other maddish toies,
False studies won with paine, false vanities and ioies.
[Pg 203]
Dic vbi Salomon, olim tam nobilis?
Vel vbi Samson est, dux invincibilis?
Vel dulcis Ionathas, multùm amabilis?
Vel pulcher Absolon, vultu mirabilis?
Tell where is Salomon, that once so noble was?
Or where now Samson is, in strength whome none could pas?
Or woorthie Ionathas, that prince so louely bold?
Or faier Absolon, so goodlie to behold?
Quò Cæsar abijt, celsus imperio?
Vel Diues splendidus, totus in prandio?
Dic vbi Tullius, clarus eloquio?
Vel Aristoteles, summus ingenio?
Shew whither is Cesar gone, which conquered far and néere?
Or that rich famous Carle,[E486] so giuen to bellie chéere:
Shew where is Tullie now, for eloquence so fit?
Or Aristoteles, of such a pregnant wit?
O esca vermium! ô massa pulueris!
O ros! ô vanitas! cùr sic extolleris,
Ignoras penitùs vtrùm cras vixeris,
Fac bonum omnibus, quàm diu poteris.
O thou fit bait for wormes![E487] O thou great heape of dust!
O dewe! O vanitie! why so extolst thy lust?
Thou therefore ignorant, what time thou hast to liue,
Doe good to erie man, while here thou hast to giue.
Quàm breue festum est, hæc mundi gloria?
Vt umbra hominis, sic eius gaudia,
Quæ semper subtrahit, æterna præmia,
Et ducunt hominem, ad dura deuia.
How short a feast (to count) is this same worlds renowne?
Such as mens shadowes be, such ioies it brings to towne.
Which alway plucketh vs from Gods eternall blis:
And leadeth man to hell, a iust reward of his.
[Pg 204]
Hæc mundi gloria, quæ magni penditur,
Sacris in literis, flos fæni dicitur,
Vt leue folium, quod vento rapitur,
Sic vita hominum, hac vita tollitur.
The brauerie of this world, estéemed here so much,
In Scripture likened is, to flowre of grasse and such:
Like as the leafe so light, through winde abrode is blowne,
So life in this our life, full soone is ouerthrowne.[4]

[1] "These eight verses of St. Bernard seem to have been extremely popular at one period.... In the 'Paradise of Dainty Devices,' first printed in 1576, we find translations of the same words" (Mason).

[2] Who. 1577.

[3] unsteady. 1577.


.... which wind abrod doth blowe,
So doth this worldly life, the life of man bestow. 1577.


Of the Authors linked Verses departing from Court to the Country.[1]

Muse not my friend to finde me here,For fortunes looke,[E488]
Contented with this meane estate:Hath changed hew:
And séeme to doo with willing chéere,    And I my booke,
That courtier doth so deadly hate.Must learne anew.

And yet of force, to learne anew,But where a spight,
Would much abash the dulled braine:Of force must bée:
I craue to iudge if this be trew,What is that wight,
The truant child that knowth the paine.May disagrée?

No, no, God wot, to disagrée,For lordlie bent,
Is ventring all to make or mar:Must learne to spare:
If fortune frowne we dailie sée,And be content
It is not best to striue too far.With countrie fare.

From daintie Court to countrie fare,Where néede yet can,
Too daintie fed[E489] is diet strange:None other skill:
From cities ioy, to countrie care,Somtime poore man
To skillesse folke is homelie change.Must breake his will.

5[Pg 205]
If courtlie change so breaketh willIf court with cart
That countrie life must serue the turne:Must be content,[E490]
What profit then in striuing still,What ease to hart,
Against the prick to séeme to spurne?Though mind repent?

What gaine I though I doo repent,As néede doth make
My crotches[2] all are broke and gon:Old age to trot:
My woonted friends are careles bent,So must I take,
They feare no chance I chance vpon.In woorth my lot.

Now if I take in woorth my lot,Behold the horse
That fatall chance doth force me to,Must trudge for pelfe,
If ye be friends embraid[3] me not,And yet of forse,
But vse a friend as friends should do.Content it selfe.

[1] "In the edition of 1573 this piece is entitled 'Of the Author's departing from the Court to the Country,' and the verses are printed consecutively—four long lines and then four short lines."—M. So, in 1577.

[2] chrotches. 1577.

[3] upbraid. 1614.


The Authors life.[1]

Now gentle friend, if thou be kinde,
Disdaine thou not, although the lot
Will now with me no better be,
than doth appere:
Nor let it grieue, that thus I liue,
But rather gesse, for quietnesse,
As others do, so do I to,
content me here.
By leaue and loue, of God aboue,
I minde to shew, in verses few,
How through the breers, my youthfull yeeres,
haue runne their race:
And further say, why thus I stay,
And minde to liue, as Bee in hiue,
Full bent to spend my life to an end,
in this same place.[2]
[Pg 206]
Borne at Riuenhall in Essex.
It came to pas, that borne I was
Of linage good, of gentle blood,
In Essex laier, in village faier,
that Riuenhall hight:
Which village lide by Banketree side,
There spend did I mine infancie,
There then my name, in honest fame,
remaind in sight.
Set to song schoole.
I yet but yong, no speech of tong,
Nor teares withall, that often fall
From mothers eies, when childe out cries,
to part hir fro:
Could pitie make, good father take,
But out I must, to song be thrust,
Say what I would, do what I could,
his minde was so.
Queristers miserie.
Wallingford Colledge.
O painfull time, for euerie crime,
What toesed eares,[E491] like baited beares!
What bobbed lips, what ierks, what nips!
what hellish toies!
What robes,[E492] how bare! what colledge fare!
What bread, how stale! what pennie Ale![E493]
Then Wallingford, how wart thou abhord
of sillie boies!
Singing mens commissions.
Thence for my voice, I must (no choice)
Away of forse, like posting horse,
For sundrie men, had plagards then,[E494]
such childe to take:
The better brest,[3][E495] the lesser rest,
To serue the Queere, now there now heere
For time so spent, I may repent,
and sorrow make.
[Pg 207]
Iohn Redford an excellent Musician [organist of St. Paul's. M.].
But marke the chance, my self to vance,
By friendships lot, to Paules I got,
So found I grace, a certaine space,
still to remaine:
With Redford there, the like no where,
For cunning such, and vertue much,
By whom some part of Musicke art,
so did I gaine.
Nicholas Vdall[E496] schoolmaster at Eton.
From Paules I went, to Eaton sent,
To learn streight waies, the latin phraies,
Where fiftie three stripes giuen to mee,
at once I had:
For fault but small, or none at all,
It came to pas, thus beat I was,
See Udall see, the mercie of thee,
to me poore lad.
Trinitie hall in Cambridge.
From London hence, to Cambridge thence,
With thanks to thee, O Trinitee,
That to thy hall, so passing all,[4]
I got at last:
There ioy I felt, there trim I dwelt,
There heauen from hell, I shifted well,
With learned men, a number then,
the time I past.
Quartan ague.
Lord Paget good to his seruants.
Long sicknes had, then was I glad
To leaue my booke, to proue and looke,
In Court what gaine, by taking paine,
mought well be found:
Lord Paget than, that noble man,
Whose soule I trust is with the iust,
That same was hee enriched mee,
with many a pound.
[Pg 208]
The hope we haue of the dead.
When[5] this betide, good parents dide,
One after one, till both were gone,
Whose petigree, who list may see,
in Harolds Booke:[E497]
Whose soules in blis be long ere this,
For hope we must, as God is iust,
So here that craue shall mercie haue,
that mercie looke.
The vices of the Court.
By Court I spide, and ten yeres tride
That Cards and Dice, with Venus vice,
And peeuish pride, from vertue wide,
with some so wraught:
That Tiburne play[E498] made them away,
Or beggers state as euill to hate,
By such like euils, I saw such dreuils,
to come to naught.
The Court commended.
Yet is it not to be forgot,
In Court that some to worship come,
And some in time to honour clime,
and speede full well:
Some haue such gift, that trim they shift,
Some profite make, by paines they take,
In perill much, though oft are such,
in Court that dwell.
The nobilitie at variance in Edward the 6 daies.
When court gan frowne and strife in towne,
And lords and knights, saw heauie sights,
Then tooke I wife, and led my life
in Suffolke soile.
There was I faine my selfe to traine,
To learne too long the fermers song,
For hope of pelfe, like worldly elfe,
to moile and toile.
[Pg 209]
At Katewade in Suffolke this booke first deuised.
As in this booke, who list to looke,
Of husbandrie, and huswiferie,
There may he finde more of my minde,
concerning this:
To carke[6] and care, and euer bare,
With losse and paine, to little gaine,
All this to haue, to cram sir knaue,
what life it is.
Ipswich commended.
When wife could not, through sicknes got,
More toile abide, so nigh Sea side,
Then thought I best, from toile to rest,
and Ipswich trie:
A towne of price,[E499] like paradice,
For quiet then, and honest men,
There was I glad, much friendship had,
a time to lie.
The deth of his first wife.
There left good wife this present life,
And there left I, house charges lie,
For glad was he, mought send for me,
good lucke so stood:
In Suffolke there, were euerie where,
Euen of the best, besides the rest,
That neuer did their friendship hid,
to doo me good.
Newe maried in Norfolk.
O Suffolke thow, content thee now,
That hadst the praies in those same daies,
For Squiers and Knights, that well delights
good house to keepe:
For Norfolke wiles, so full of giles,[E500]
Haue caught my toe, by wiuing so,
That out to thee, I see for mee,
no waie to creepe.
[Pg 210]
Mistres Amie Moone.
For lo, through gile, what haps the while,
Through Venus toies, in hope of ioies,
I chanced soone to find a Moone,[7]
of cheerfull hew:
Which well a fine me thought did shine,
Did neuer change, a thing most strange,
Yet kept in sight, hir course aright,
and compas trew.
The charges following a yoong wife.
Behold of truth, with wife in youth,
For ioie at large, what daily charge,
Through childrens hap, what opened gap,
to more begun.
The childe at nurse, to rob the purse,
The same to wed, to trouble hed.
For pleasure rare, such endlesse care,
hath husband wun.
West Diram Abbie.
Land-lordes at variance.
Then did I dwell in Diram sell,[E501]
A place for wood, that trimlie stood,
With flesh and fish, as heart would wish:
but when I spide
That Lord with Lord could not accord,
But now pound he, and now pound we,
Then left I all, bicause such brall,
I list not bide.
Sir Richard Soothwell.
O Soothwell, what meanst thou by that,
Thou worthie wight, thou famous knight,
So me to craue, and to thy graue,
go by and by?
O death thou fo, why didst thou so
Ungently treat that Iewell great,
Which opte his doore to rich and poore,
so bounteously?
[Pg 211]
His vij executors.
There thus bestad, when leaue I had,
By death of him, to sinke or swim,
And rauens I saw togither draw,
in such a sort:
Then waies I saught, by wisdome taught,
To beare low saile, least stock should quaile,
Till ship mought finde, with prosperous winde,
some safer port.
Norwich Citie.
Norwich qualities.
At length by vew, to shore I drew,
Discharging straight both ship and fraight,
At Norwich fine, for me and mine,
a citie trim:
Where strangers wel may seeme to dwel,
That pitch and pay, or keepe their day,
But who that want, shall find it scant
so good for him.
Maister Salisburie deane of Norwich.
But Salisburie how were kept my vow,
If praise from thee were kept by mee,
Thou gentle deane, mine onely meane,
there then to liue?
Though churles such some to craue can come,
And pray once got, regard thee not,
Yet liue or die, so will not I,
example giue.
In 138 houres I neuer made drop of water.
When learned men could there nor then,
Deuise to swage the stormie rage,
Nor yet the furie of my dissurie,
that long I had:
From Norwich aire, in great despaire,
Away to flie, or else to die,
To seeke more helth, to seeke more welth,
then was I glad.
[Pg 212]
Faiersted parsonage in Essex.
From thence so sent, away I went,
With sicknes worne, as one forlorne,
To house my hed, at Faiersted,[E502]
where whiles I dwelt:
The tithing life, the tithing strife,
Through tithing ill, of Jacke and Gill,
The dailie paies, the mierie waies,
too long I felt.
Lease for parsons life.
When charges grew, still new and new,
And that I spide, if parson dide,
(All hope in vaine) to hope for gaine,
I might go daunce:
Once rid my hand of parsonage land,
Thence by and by, away went I,
To London streight, to hope and waight,
for better chaunce.
London commended.
Well London well, that bearst the bell
Of praise about, England throughout,
And dost in deede, to such as neede,
much kindnes shew:
Who that with thee can hardly agree,
Nor can well prais thy friendly wais,
Shall friendship find, to please his mind,
in places few.
Vnthrifts order.
As for such mates, as vertue hates,
Or he or thay, that go so gay,
That needes he must take all of trust,
for him and his:
Though such for we by Lothburie go,
For being spide about Cheapeside,
Least Mercers bookes for monie lookes,
small matter it is.
[Pg 213]
The plague at London [1574, 1575].[E503]
Trinitie College in Cambridge.
When gaines was gon, and yeres grew on,
And death did crie, from London flie,
In Cambridge then, I found agen,
a resting plot:
In Colledge best of all the rest,
With thanks to thee, O Trinitee,[8]
Through thee and thine, for me and mine,
some stay I got.
Youth ill spent makes age repent.
Since hap haps so, let toiling go,
Let seruing paines yeeld forth hir gaines,
Let courtly giftes, with wedding shiftes,
helpe now to liue:
Let Musicke win, let stocke come in,
Let wisedome kerue, let reason serue,
For here I craue such end to haue,
as God shall giue.
A lesson for yonger brothers.
Thus friends, by me perceiue may ye,
That gentrie standes, not all by landes,[E505]
Nor all so feft, or plentie left
by parents gift:
But now and then, of gentlemen,
The yonger sonne is driuen to ronne,
And glad to seeke from creeke to creeke,
to come by thrift.
A true lesson.
And more by this, to conster is,
In world is set, ynough to get,
But where and whan, that scarsely can,
the wisest tell:
By learning some to riches come,
By ship and plough some get ynough,
And some so wiue that trim they thriue,
and speede full well.
[Pg 214]
Hardnes in youth not the worst.
Cocking of youth not the best.
To this before, adde one thing more,
Youth hardnes taught, with knowledge wraught,
Most apt do prooue, to shift and shooue,
among the best:
Where cocking Dads[E506] make sawsie lads,
In youth so rage, to beg in age,
Or else to fetch a Tibourne stretch,
among the rest.
Not pride in youth, but welth in age needfull.
Not rampish toie, of girle and boie,
Nor garment trim, of hir or him,[E507]
In childhoode spent, to fond intent,
good end doth frame:
If marke we shall, the summe of all,
The end it is, that noted is,
Which if it bide, with vertue tride,
deserueth fame.
Man doth labour and God doth blesse.
When all is done, lerne this my sonne,
Not friend, nor skill, nor wit at will,
Nor ship nor clod, but onelie God,
doth all in all:
Man taketh paine, God giueth gaine,
Man doth his best, God doth the rest,
Man well intendes, God foizon sendes,
else want he shall.[E508]
A contented minde is worth all.
Some seeke for welth, I seeke my helth,
Some seeke to please, I seeke mine ease,
Some seeke to saue, I seeke to haue
to liue vpright:
More than to ride, with pompe and pride,
Or for to iet,[9][E509] in others det,
Such is my skill, and shall be still,
for any wight.
[Pg 215]
Too fond were I, here thus to lie,
Unles that welth mought further helth,
And profit some should thereby come,
to helpe withall:
This causeth mee well pleasde to bee,
Such drift to make, such life to take,
Enforsing minde remorse to finde,
as neede neede shall.
Happie that liues well, vnhappie dies euill.
Friend, al thing waid, that here is said,
And being got, that paies the shot,
Me thinke of right haue leaue I might,
(death drawing neere:)
To seeke some waies, my God to praies,
And mercy craue, in time to haue,
And for the rest, what he thinkes best,
to suffer heere.

[1] First added to the 1573 edition.—M.

[2] "The author means London; but though it is believed he died there, it is evident from the sequel, that he left it on account of the plague."—M.

[3] Cf. Shakespere's Twelfth Night, ii. 3.

[4] "Till it was repaired, between 1740 and 1750, it is said to have been but a poor-looking place; and which is reported to have been characterized by Dr. Mar, the Vice-Chancellor, when speaking of it to the King of Denmark, as le petit coigne."—M.

[5] While. 1577.

[6] carp. 1573.

[7] His second wife.

[8] Founded in 1546.

[9] set. 1573.


[Of edition of 1580, but see over.]

[Pg 216]


Of Fortune.

The following poem is not to be found after the edition of 1573 and its reprint of 1577.—M.

Fortuna non est semper amica,
Superbiam igitur semper devita.

Though Fortune smiles, and fawnes vpon thy side,
Thyself extol for that no whit the more;
Though Fortune frownes and wresteth al thing wide,
Let fancy stay, keepe courage still in store;
For chance may change as chance hath don before:
Thus shalt thou holde more safe then honour got,
Or lose the losse,[1] though Fortune will or not.
Thy friend at this shall dayly comfort haue,
When warely thus, thou bearest thy selfe vpright,
Thy foes at this shall gladly friendship craue,
When hope so small is left to wrecke their spight,
For lowly liefe withstandeth enuy quight:
As floeting ship, by bearing sayl alowe,
Withstandeth stormes when boistrous winds do blowe.
Thy vsage thus in time shall win the gole,
Though doughtful haps, dame fortune sendes betweene,
And thou shalt see thine enemies blow the cole,
To ease thine hart much more then thou dost weene,
Ye though a change most strangely should be seene,
Yet friend at neede shall secret friendship make,
When foe in deede shal want his part to take.

[1] lesse. M.

[Pg 217]

A Table of the points of Huswiferie mentioned in this Booke.

The Authors Epistle to the Ladie Paget.

The Authors Epistle to the Reader.

The Authors Preface to his booke of huswiferie.

The praise of huswiferie.

A description of huswife and huswiferie.

Instructions to huswiferie.

A digression to cockcrowing.

Huswiferie morning workes.

Huswifelie breakefast workes.

Huswifelie admonitions or lessons.








Dinner time huswiferie.

Huswifelie afternoone workes.

Huswifelie Euening workes.

Supper time huswiferie.

After Supper workes of huswiferie.

Of bedtime in winter and sommer.

The times to rise in winter and sommer.

Of bearing and forbearing.

The Ploughmans feasting daies.

The good huswifelie physicke.

The good motherlie nurserie.

A precept of thinking on the poore.

A comparison betwéene good huswiferie and bad.

The meanes for children to attaine to learning.

A description of womans age from fourtéene to fourescore and foure.

The Inholders posie.

Certaine table lessons.

Lessons for waiting seruantes.

Husbandly posies for ye hal.

Posies for the Parler.

Posies for the gestes chamber.

Posies for thine own bed chamber.

A Sonet to the Ladie Paget.

Principall pointes of Religion.

The Authors beliefe.

Of the omnipotencie of God and debilitie of man.

Of almesdéedes.

Of malus homo.

Of two sortes of people.

Of what force the deuill is if he be resisted.

Eight of Saint Barnards verses in Latine and English, to be soong both by one note.

Of the Authors departing from the Court.

The Authors life of his owne penning.

[Of Fortune.]


[Pg 218]

¶ Imprinted at London,
by Henrie Denham, dwelling
at Paternoster Row,
at the figure of the Starre,
being the assigne of
William Seres.

Cum priuilegio Regiæ Maiestatis.

[Pg 219]

A hundreth good
pointes of husbandrie.

A hundreth good pointes, of good husbandry,
maintaineth good household, with huswifry.
Housekeping and husbandry, if it be good:
must loue one another, as cousinnes in blood.
The wife to, must husband as well as the man:
or farewel thy husbandry, doe what thou can.

[Pg 220]

To the right honorable and my speciall good lord and maister, the lord Paget, Lord priuie seale.

T   The trouth doth teache, that tyme must serue.
H   (How euer man, doth blase hys mynde)
O   (Of thynges most lyke, to thryue or sterue:)
M   Much apt to iudge, is often blynde.
A   And therfore, tyme it doth behoofe:
S   Shall make of trouth, a perfit proofe.
T   Take you my lord, and mayster than,
U   (Unlesse mischaunce mischaunseth me:)
S   Such homely gyft, of your own man,
S   Synce more in court, I may not be:
E   and let your praise, wonne here tofore,
R   Remayne abrode, for euermore.
M   My seruyng you, thus vnderstande,
A   And god his helpe, and yours withall:
D   Dyd cause good lucke, to take myne hande
E   Erecting one, most lyke to fall:
M   My seruing you, I know it was,
E   Enforced this, to come to passe.
S   So synce I was, at Cambridge tought,
O   Of court ten yeres, I made a say;
N   No musike than, was left vnsought,
A   A care I had, to serue that way,
M   My ioye gan slake, then made I chaunge,
E   Expulsed myrth, for musike straunge.
M   My musike synce, hath been the plough,
E   Entangled with, some care among:
T   The gayn not great, the payn enough,
H   Hath made me syng, another song.
A   And if I may, my song auowe;
N   No man I craue, to iudge but you.
¶ Your seruant,
Thomas Tusser.

[Pg 221]

Concordia paruæ res crescunt
Discordia maximæ dilabuntur.

Where couples agree not, is rancor and poysen,
where they two kepe house, than is neuer no foysen:
But contrary lightly, where couples agree,
what chaunseth by wisdom, looke after to see.
Good husbandes, that loueth good housholdes to kepe,
be sometime full carefull, when others do slepe:
To spend as they may, or to stop at the furst,
for running behinde hand, or feare of the wurst.
Then count with thy purse, when thy haruest is in,
thy cardes being tolde, how to saue or to win:
But win or els saue, or els passe not to farre,
For hoping to make, least thou happen to marre.
Make money thy drudge, for to folow thy warke,
and Wisdom thy steward, good Order thy clarke:
Prouision thy cator, and all shall goe well,
for foysen is there, where prouision doth dwell.
With some folke on sundayes, their tables do reke:
and halfe the weke after, their diners to seke.
At no tyme to much, but haue alway ynough:
is housholdy fare, and the guyse of the plough.
For what shal it profet, ynough to prouide,
and then haue it spoiled, or filched aside:
As twenty lode busshes, cut downe at a clappe,
such hede may be taken, shall stoppe but a gappe.
Good labouring threshers, are worthy to eate,
Good husbandly ploughmen, deserueth their meate,
Good huswiuely huswiues, that let for no rest,
should eate when they list, and should drinke of the best.
Beware raskabilia, slouthfull to wurke,
proloiners and filchers, that loue for to lurke:
And cherishe well willers, that serueth thy nede,
take time to thy Tutor, God sende the good spede.

[Pg 222]

¶ August.

When haruest is done, all thing placed and set,
for saultfishe and herring, then laie for to get:
The byeng of them, comming first vnto rode,
shal pay for thy charges, thou spendest abrode.
Thy saultfishe well chosen, not burnt at the stone,
or drye them thyselfe, (hauing skill is a lone:)
Brought salfe to thy house, would be packed vp drie,
with pease strawe betweene, least it rot as it lie.
Or euer thou ride, with thy seruauntes compound,
to carry thy muckhilles, on thy barley ground:
One aker wel compast, is worth akers three,
at haruest, thy barne shall declare it to thee.
This good shalt thou learne, with thy riding about,
the prises of thinges, all the yere thoroughout:
And what time is best, for to sell that thou haue,
And how for to bye, to be likely to saue.
For bying and selling, doth wonderfull well,
to him that hath wit, how to by and to sell:
But chopping and chaungeing, may make such a breck,
that gone is thy winninges, for sauing thy neck.
The riche man, his bargaines are neuer vnsought,
the seller will fynde him, he nede not take thought:
But herein consisteth, a part of our text,
who byeth at first hand, and who at the next.
He byeth at first hand, that ventreth his golde,
he byeth at second, that dare not be bolde:
He byeth at third hand, that nedes borrow must,
who byeth of him, than shall pay for his lust.
When euer thou bargain, for better or wurse,
let alway one bargain, remain in thy purse:
Good credit doth well, but good credit to kepe,
is pay and dispatche him, or euer thou slepe.
Be mindeful abrode, of thy Mighelmas spring,
for theron dependeth, a marueilous thing:
When gentiles vse walking, with hawkes on their handes,
Good husbandes, with grasing doe purchase their landes.
[Pg 223]
And as thou come homeward, bye xl. good crones,
and fatte me the bodies, of those sely bones:
With those and thy swine, or and shrouetyde be past,
thy folke shal fare well, where as others shal fast.
Thy saffron plot, pared in saint mary daies,
for pleasure and profit, shal serue many waies:
With twenty foote square, knowing how for to doo,
shal stede both thine own house, and next neighbour too.

¶ September.

Threshe sede and goe fanne, for the plough may not lye,
September doth bid, to be sowing of rye:
The redges well harrowde, or euer thou strike,
is one poynt of husbandry, rye land do like.
Geue winter corne leaue, for to haue full his lust,
sowe wheate as thou mayst, but sowe rye in the dust:
Be carefull for sede, for such sede as thou sowe,
as true as thou liuest, loke iustly to mowe.
The sede being sowne, waterforow thy ground,
that rain, when it cummeth, may runne away round:
The diches kept skowred, the hedge clad with thorne,
doth well to drayne water, and saueth thy corne.
Then furth with thy slinges, and thine arowes & bowes,
till ridges be grene, kepe the corne from the crowes:
A good boye abrode, by the day starre appere,
shall skare good man crowe, that he dare not come nere.
At Mihelmas, mast would be loked vpon,
and lay to get some, or the mast time be gon:
It saueth thy corne well, it fatteth thy swyne;
In frost it doth helpe them, where els they should pine.

¶ October.

The rye in the ground, while September doth last:
October for wheate sowing, calleth as fast.
What euer it cost thee, what euer thou geue,
have done sowing wheate, before halowmas eve.
[Pg 224]
The mone in the wane, gather fruit on the tree,
the riper, the better for graffe and for thee.
But michers, that loue not to bie nor to craue:
make some gather sooner, els fewe should they haue.
Or winter doe come, while the weather is good:
for gutting thy grounde, get the home with thy wood.
Set bauen alone, lay the bowghes from the blockes:
the drier, the les maidens dablith their dockes.
For rooting thy grounde, ring thy hogges thou hast nede
the better thou ring them, the better they fede.
Most times with their elders, the yong ones kepe best:
then yoke well the great knaues, and fauour the rest.
But yoke not thy swine, while thine akorne time last:
for diuers misfortunes, that happen to fast.
Or if thou loue eared, and vnmaimed hogges:
giue eie to thy neighbour, and eare to his dogges.

¶ November.

Get vp with thy barley lande, dry as thou can:
at March (as thou layest it) so loke for it than.
Get euer before hande, drag neuer behinde:
least winter beclip thee, and breake of thy minde.
At Hallowmas, slaughter time sone commeth in:
and than doth the husbande mans feasting begin.
From that time, to Candlemas weekely kill some:
their offal for household, the better shal come.
All soules that be thursty, bid threshe out for mawlt:
well handled and tended, or els thou dost nawlt.
Thencrease of one strike is a pek for thy store:
the maker is bad els, or pilfreth the more.
For Easter, at Martilmas hange vp a biefe:
for pease fed and stall fed, play pickpurse the thiefe.
With that and fat bakon, till grasse biefe come in:
thy folke shall loke cherely, when others loke thin.
Set gardeine beanes, after saint Edmonde the king:
the Moone in the wane, theron hangeth a thing.
Thencrease of one gallonde, well proued of some:
shall pleasure thy householde, ere peskod time come.
[Pg 225]
Except thou take good hede, when first they apere,
the crowes will be halfe, grow they neuer so nere.
Thinges sowne, set or graft, in good memory haue:
from beast, birde and weather to cherishe and saue.

¶ Decembre.

Abrode for the raine, when thou canst do no good;
then go let thy flayles, as the threshers were wood.
Beware they threshe clene, though the lesser they yarne:
and if thou wilt thriue, loke thy selfe to thy barne.
If barne rome will serue, lay thy stoouer vp drye
and eche kinde of strawe, by hitselfe let it lie.
Thy chaffe, housed sweete, kept from pullein and dust:
shall serue well thy horses, when labour they must.
When pasture is gone, and the fildes mier and weate:
then stable thy plough horse, and there giue them meate.
The better thou vse them, in place where they stande:
more strength shall they haue, for to breake vp thy lande.
Giue cattell their fodder, the plot drie and warme:
and count them, for miring or other like harme.
Trust neuer to boyes, if thou trust well to spede:
be serued with those, that may helpe at a nede.
Serue first out thy rie strawe, then wheate & then pease,
then otestrawe then barley, then hay if you please.
But serue them with haye, while thy straw stoouer last,
they loue no more strawe, they had rather to fast.
Kepe neuer such seruantes, as doth thee no good,
for making thy heare, growing thorrough thy hood.
For nestling of verlettes, of brothels and hoores:
make many a rich man, to shet vp his doores.

¶ Christmas.

Get Iuye and hull, woman deck vp thyne house:
and take this same brawne, for to seeth and to souse.
Prouide vs good chere, for thou knowst the old guise:
olde customes, that good be, let no man dispise.
[Pg 226]
At Christmas be mery, and thanke god of all:
and feast thy pore neighbours, the great with the small,
yea al the yere long, haue an eie to the poore:
and god shall sende luck, to kepe open thy doore.
Good fruite and good plenty, doth well in thy loft:
then lay for an orcharde, and cherishe it oft.
The profet is mickell, the pleasure is mutch;
at pleasure with profet, few wise men will grutch.
For plantes and for stockes, lay afore hand to cast:
but set or remoue them, while twelue tide doe last.
Set one from another, full twenty fote square:
the better and greater, they yerely will bare.

¶ January.

When Christmas is done, kepe not Christmas time still:
be mindefull of rering, and loth for to kill.
For then, what thou rerist thou nede not to dout:
will double thy gaine, ere the yere come about.
Be gredy to spende all, and careles to saue:
and shortly be nedy, and redy to craue.
be wilfull to kill, and vnskilfull to store:
and sone giue vp houskeping, longe any more.
Thy calues then, that come betwene new yere and lent:
saue gladly for store, lest thou after repent.
For all thing at that time, that colde feleth some:
shall better beare colde, when the next winter come.
Weane no time thy calfe, vnder xl daies olde:
and lay for to saue it, as thou sauest golde.
yet calues that doe fal, betwene change and the prime:
pas seldome to rere them, but kill them in time.
For stores of thy swine, be thou carefull betwix:
of one sow at one time, rere seldome past six.
The fewe that she kepe, much the better shal bee:
of all thing, one good is worth steruelinges three.
Geld vnder the dame, within fornight at least:
and saue both thy money, and life of the beast.
But gelde with the gelder, as many one doe:
and of halfe a dosen, go geld away two.
[Pg 227]
Thy coltes for the sadle, geld yong to be light:
for cart doe not so, if thou iudgest a right.
Nor geld not, but when they be lusty and fat:
for there is a point, to be learned in that.
Geld marefoles, but titts ere and nine dayes of age:
they die els of gelding, some gelders wil gage.
But marefoles, both likely of bulke and of bone:
kepe such to bring coltes, let their gelding alone.
For gaining a trifle, sell neuer thy store:
for chaunsing on worse, then thine owne were before.
More larger of body, the better for brede:
more forward of growing, the better they spede.
Thy sowes, great with fare, that come best for to rere:
loke dayly thou seest them, and count them full dere.
For that time, the losse of one fare of thy sowe:
is greater, then losse of two calues of thy kowe.
A kow good of milk, big of bulke, hayle and sounde,
is yerely for profet, as good as a pounde.
And yet, by the yere haue I proued ere now:
as good to the purse, is a sow as a kow.
Kepe one and kepe both, so thou maist if thou wilt:
then all shall be saued, and nothing be spilt.
Kepe two bease, and one sow, and liue at thine ease:
and no time for nede, bye thy meate but thou please.
Who both by his calues, and his lambes will be knowne:
may well kill a neate, and a shepe of his owne.
And he, that will rere vp a pig in his house:
shall eate sweter bakon, and cheaper fed sowse.
But eate vp thy veale, pig and lambe being froth:
and twise in a weeke, go to bed without broth.
As that man that pas not, but sell away sell:
shall neuer kepe good house, where euer he dwell.
Spende none but thyne owne, howsoeuer thou spende:
nor haft not to god ward, for that he doth sende.
Tythe truly for al thing, let pas of the rest:
the iust man, his dealinges god prospereth best.
[Pg 228]
In January, husbandes that powcheth the grotes:
will breake vp their lay, or be sowing of otes.
Sow Jauiuer Otes, and lay them by thy wheate;
in May, bye thy hay for thy cattel to eate.

¶ Februarij.

In Feuerell, rest not for taking thine ease:
get into the grounde with thy beanes, and thy pease.
Sow peason betimes, and betimes they will come:
the sooner, the better they fill vp a rome.
In euery grene, where the fence is not thine:
the thornes stub out cleane, that the grasse may be fine.
Thy neighbours wil borow, els hack them beliue:
so neither thy grasse, nor the bushes shall thriue.
Thy seruant, in walking thy pastures aboute:
for yokes, forkes and rakes, let him loke to finde oute.
And after at leyser let this be his hier:
to trimme them and make them at home by the fier.
When frostes will not suffer to ditche nor to hedge:
then get the an heate, with thy betill and wedge.
A blocke at the harthe, cowched close for thy life:
shall helpe to saue fier bote, and please well thy wife.
Then lop for thy fewel, the powlinges well growen:
that hindreth the corne, or the grasse to be mowen.
In lopping, and cropping, saue Edder and stake
thyne hedges, where nede is to mende or to make.
No stick, nor no stone, leaue vnpicked vp clene:
for hurting thy sieth, or for harming thy grene.
For sauing of al thing, get home with the rest,
the snow frozen hardest, thy cart may goe best.
Spare meddowes at shroftide, spare marshes at paske:
for feare of a drougth, neuer longer time aske.
Then hedge them, and ditche them, bestow thereon pence:
for meddow and corne, craueth euer good fence.
And alway, let this be a part of thy care:
for shift of good pasture, lay pasture to spare.
Then seauer thy groundes, and so keping them still:
finde cattel at ease, and haue pasture at will.

[Pg 229]

¶ Marche.

In Marche, sow thy barley thy londe not to colde:
the drier the better, a hundreth times tolde.
That tilth harrowde finely, set sede time an ende:
and praise, and pray God a good haruest to sende.
Sow wheate in a meane, sow thy Rie not to thin;
let peason and beanes, here and there, take therein.
Sow barley and otes, good and thick doe not spare:
giue lande leaue, her sede or her wede for to bare.
For barley and pease, harrow after thou sowe:
for rye, harrow first seldome after I trowe.
Let wheat haue a clodde, for to couer the hedde:
that after a frost, it may out and goe spredde.

¶ A digression from husbandrie:
to a poynt or two of huswifrie.

Now here I think nedeful, a pawse for to make;
to treate of some paines, a good huswife must take.
For huswifes must husbande, as wel as the man:
or farewel thy husbandrie, do what thou can.
In Marche, and in Aprill, from morning to night:
in sowing and setting, good huswiues delight.
To haue in their gardein, or some other plot:
to trim vp their house, and to furnish their pot.
Haue millons at Mihelmas, parsneps in lent:
in June, buttred beanes, saueth fish to be spent.
With those, and good pottage inough hauing than:
thou winnest the heart, of thy laboring man.

¶ Aprill.

From Aprill begin, til saint Andrew be past:
so long with good huswiues, their dairies doe last.
Good milche bease and pasture, good husbandes prouide:
good huswiues know best, all the rest how to guide.
But huswiues, that learne not to make their owne cheese:
with trusting of others, haue this for their feese.
Their milke slapt in corners, their creame al to sost:
their milk pannes so flotte, that their cheeses be lost.
[Pg 230]
Where some of a kowe, maketh yerely a pounde:
these huswiues crye creake, for their voice will not sounde.
The seruauntes, suspecting their dame lye in waighte:
with one thing or other, they trudge away straight.
Then neighbour (for gods sake) if any such bee;
if you know a good seruant, waine her to mee.
Such maister, suche man, and such mistres suche mayde
such husbandes and huswiues, suche houses araide.
For flax and for hemp, for to haue of her owne:
the wife must in May, take good hede it be sowne.
And trimme it, and kepe it to serue at a nede:
the femble to spin, and the karle for her sede.
Good husbandes, abrode seketh al well to haue:
good huswiues, at home seketh al well to saue.
Thus hauing and sauing, in place where they meete:
make profit with pleasure, suche couples to greete.

¶ May.

Both Philip and Jacob, bid put of thy lammes:
that thinkest to haue any milke of their dammes.
But Lammas aduiseth thee, milke not to long:
for hardnes make pouerty, skabbed among.
To milke and to folde them, is much to require:
except thou haue pasture, to fill their desire.
But nightes being shorte, and such hede thou mayst take
not hurting their bodies, much profit to make.
Milke six ewes, for one kowe, well chosen therefore:
and double thy dayrie, els trust me no more.
And yet may good huswiues, that knoweth the skill:
haue mixt or vnmixt, at their pleasure and will.
For gredy of gaine, ouerlay not thy grownde:
and then shall thy cattell, be lusty and sownde.
But pinche them of pasture, while sommer time last:
and plucke at their tailes, ere & winter be past.
Pinche weannels at no time, of water nor meate:
if euer thou hope to have them good neate.
In sommer at al times, in winter in frost:
if cattell lacke drinke, they be vtterly lost.
[Pg 231]
In May at the furdest, twy fallow thy lande:
much drougth may cause after, thy plough els to stande.
That tilth being done, thou hast passed the wurste:
then after, who plowgheth, plowgh thou with the furste.

¶ June.

In June get thy wedehoke, thy knife and thy gloue:
and wede out such wede, as the corne doth not loue.
Slack no time thy weding, for darth nor for cheape:
thy corne shall reward it, or euer thou reape.
The maywede doth burne, and the thistle doth freate:
the Tine pulleth downe, both the rie and the wheate.
The dock and the brake, noieth corne very much:
but bodle for barley, no weede there is such.
In June washe thy shepe, where the water doth runne:
and kepe them from dust, but not kepe them from sunne
Then share them and spare not, at two daies anende,
the sooner, the better their bodies amende.
Rewarde not the shepe, when thou takest his cote:
with two or three patches, as brode as a grote;
The flie than and wormes, will compel it to pine:
more paine to thy cattell, more trouble is thine.
But share not thy lammes, till mid July be worne:
the better their cotes will be growne to be shorne.
The pie will discharge thee, for pulling the reste:
the lighter the shepe is, then fedeth it beste.
Saint Mihel byd bees, to be brent out of strife:
sajnt John bid take honey, with fauour of life.
For one sely cottage, set south good and warme:
take body and goodes, and twise yerely a swarme.
At Christmas take hede, if their hiues be to light:
take honey and water, together wel dight.
That mixed with strawes, in a dish in their hiues:
they drowne not, they fight not, thou sauest their lyues.
At midsommer downe with thy brimbles and brakes:
and after abrode, with thy forkes and thy rakes.
Set mowers a worke, while the meddowes be growne;
the lenger they stande, so much worse to be mowne.
[Pg 232]
Prouide of thine owne, to haue all thing at hande:
els worke and the workman, shall oftentimes stande.
Loue seldome to borow, that thinkest to saue;
who lendeth the one, will loke two thinges to haue.
Good husbandes that laye, to saue all thing vpright:
for Tumbrels and cartes, haue a shed redy dight.
A store house for trinkets kept close as a iayle:
that nothing be wanting, the worthe of a nayle.
Thy cartes would be searched, withoute and within;
well cloughted and greased, or hay time begin.
Thy hay being caried, though carters had sworne:
the cartes bottome borded, is sauing of corne.

¶ Julii.

Then muster thy folke, play the captaine thyselfe:
prouiding them weapon, and suche kinde of pelfe.
Get bottels and bagges, kepe the fielde in the heate:
the feare is not muche, but the daunger is great.
With tossing and raking, and setting on cox:
the grasse that was grene, is now hay for an ox.
That done, leaue the tieth, lode thy cart and awaye:
the battell is fought, thou hast gotten the daye.
Then doune with thy hedlondes, thy corne rounde about
leaue neuer a dalop, vnmoune or had out.
Though grasse be but thinne, about barley and pease:
yet picked vp clene, it shall do thee good ease.
Thryfallowe betime, for destroing of weede:
least thistle and dock, fall a bloming and seede.
Such season may hap, it shall stande the vpon:
to till it againe, or the somer be gone.
And better thou warte, so to doe for thy hast:
then (hardnes) for slougth make thy lande to lie wast.
A redy good forehorse, is dainty to finde:
be hindred at first, and come alway behinde.
Thy houses and barnes, would be loked vpon:
and all thing amended, or haruest come on.
Thinges thus set in ordre, at quiet and rest:
thy haruest goeth forwarde and prospereth best.
[Pg 233]
Sainct James willeth husbandes, get reapers at hande:
the corne, being ripe doe but shead as it stande.
Be sauing and thankfull, for that god hath sent:
he sendeth it thee, for the selfe same entent.
Reape well, scatter not, gather cleane that is shorne:
binde fast, shock a pase, pay the tenth of thy corne.
Lode salfe, carry home, lose no time, being faier:
golfe iust, in the barne, it is out of dispaier.
This done, set the pore ouer all for to gleane:
and after thy cattel, to eate it vp cleane.
Then spare it for pasture, till rowen be past:
to lengthen thy dayrey, no better thou hast.
Then welcome thy haruest folke, seruauntes and all:
with mirth and good chere, let them furnish thine hall.
The haruest lorde nightly, must geue the a song:
fill him then the blacke boll, or els he hath wrong.
Thy haruest thus ended, in myrth and in ioye:
please euery one gently, man woman and boye.
Thus doing, with alway, such helpe as they can:
thou winnest the name, of a right husband man.
Nowe thinke vpon god, let thy tonge neuer cease:
from thanking of him, for his myghty encrease.
Accept my good wil, finde no fault tyll thou trye:
the better thou thryuest, the gladder am I.

A sonet or brief rehersall of the properties of the twelue monethes afore rehersed.

As Janeuer fryse pot, bidth corne kepe hym lowe:
And feuerell fill dyke, doth good with his snowe:
A bushel of Marche dust, worth raunsomes of gold
And Aprill his stormes, be to good to be solde:
As May with his flowers, geue ladies their lust:
And June after blooming, set carnels so iust:
As July bid all thing, in order to ripe:
And August bid reapers, to take full their gripe.
September his fruit, biddeth gather as fast:
October bid hogges, to come eate vp his mast:
As dirtie Nouember, bid threshe at thine ease:
[Pg 234] December bid Christmas, to spende what he please:
So wisdom bid kepe, and prouide while we may:
For age crepeth on as the time passeth away.
Thinges thriftie, that teacheth the thriuing to thriue;
teache timely to trauas, the thing that thou triue.
Transferring thy toyle, to the times truely tought:
that teacheth the temperaunce, to temper thy thought.
To temper thy trauaile, to tarrye the tide:
this teacheth the thriftines, twenty times tride.
Thinke truely to trauaile, that thinkest to thee:
the trade that thy teacher taught truely to the.
Take thankfully thinges, thanking tenderly those:
that teacheth thee thriftly, thy time to transpose.
The trouth teached two times, teache thou two times ten
this trade thou that takest, take thrift to the then.

¶ Imprinted at London in flete strete
within Temple barre, at the sygne of the
hand and starre, by Richard Tottel,
the third day of February, An. 1557.
Cum priuilegio ad imprimendum

[Pg 235]


(Notes signed M. are from Dr. Mavor's edition of 1812, and those signed T.R. are from Hilman's Tusser Redivivus, 1710.)

[E1] "Er in aught be begun;" that is, before a beginning be made in anything, the verb being used impersonally.

[E2] The directions which are stated briefly in the Abstract will be found in the Month's Husbandry in the stanza bearing the same number.

[E3] "Pilcrowe," the mark of a new paragraph in printing (¶). A corruption of paragraph, through parcraft, pilcraft, to pilcrow. "Paragrapha, pylcraft in wrytynge."—Medulla Gramm. "Paragraphus, Anglice a pargrafte in wrytynge."—Ortus. "Paragraphe or Pillcrow, a full sentence, head or title."—Cotgrave. "A Pilkcrow, vide Paragraph."—Gouldman.

[E4] "Crosserowe." "Shee that knowes where Christes crosse stands, will neuer forget where great A dwells."—Tom Tell-Trothe's New Year's Gift (New Shakspere Soc. ed. Furnivall), p. 33. "The Christs-crosse-row or Horne-booke, wherein a child learnes it."—Cotgrave. The alphabet was called the Christ-cross-row, some say because a cross was prefixed to the alphabet in the old primers; but as probably from a superstitious custom of writing the alphabet in the form of a cross as a charm. This was even solemnly practised by the Bishop in the consecration of a church. See Picart's Relig. Ceremonies, vol. i. p. 131.—Nares.

[E5] "A medicine for the cowlaske." In Sloane MS. 1585, f. 152, will be found a recipe for the cure of diarrhœa, the components of which appear to be the yolk of a new-laid egg, honey, and fine salt.

[E6] In the edition of 1557, the first stanza of the Epistle reads somewhat differently; see p. 220.

[E7] "Time trieth the troth," in Latin "Veritas temporis filia," occurs in Tottel's Miscellany, 1557, repr. 1867, p. 221.—Hazlitt's English Proverbs.

[E8] "Vnlesse mischance mischanceth me" = unless fortune is[Pg 236] unkind to me.

[E9] "Remaine abrode for euermore," i.e. be given to the writings of others.

[E10] It is noticeable that though in the Author's Epistle he spells his name, most probably for convenience sake, as Tussar, he on all other occasions spells it Tusser, which is no doubt correct. In the edition of 1557 the name is spelt correctly, although the corresponding line of the stanza commences with the letter a. See p. 220.

[E11] "Like Iugurth, Prince of Numid." Jugurtha, an illegitimate son of Mastanabal, after the death of Micipsa murdered his two sons and seized on the sovereignty of Numidia. War was declared against him by the Romans, and after some time Metellus drove him to such extremes that he was obliged to take refuge with his father-in-law, Bocchus, by whom he was given up to Marius, was carried in triumph to Rome, and finally starved to death. The history of the war against him is related in Sallust's Bellum Jugurthinum.

[E12] "With losses so perfumid;" i.e. pervaded, thoroughly imbued; we use imbued nearly in the same way.

[E13] Harrison, in his Description of England (E.E.T. Soc. ed. Furnivall, part i. p. 241), gives a very bad character to the landlords of his day: "What stocke of monie soeuer he [the farmer] gathereth and laieth vp in all his yeares, it is often seene, that the landlord will take such order with him for the same, when he renueth his lease, which is commonlie eight or six yeares before the old be expired (sith it is now growen almost to a custome, that if he come not to his lord so long before, another shall step in for a reuersion, and so defeat him out right) that it shall neuer trouble him more than the haire of his beard, when the barber hath washed and shaued it from his skin. And as they commend these, so (beside the decaie of house-keeping whereby the poore haue beene relieued) they speake also of three things that are growen to be verie grieuous vnto them, to wit, the inhansing of rents, latelie mentioned; the dailie oppression of copiholders, whose lords seeke to bring their poore tenants almost into plaine seruitude and miserie, dailie deuising new meanes, and seeking vp all the old, how to cut them shorter and shorter, doubling, trebling, and now and then seuen times increasing their fines; driuing them also for euerie trifle to loose and forfeit their tenures, (by whom the greatest part of the realme dooth stand and is mainteined,) to the end they may fleece them yet more." See also Norden's Surveyor's Dialogue, ed. 1607, p. 51.

The following curious prayer is in Edward the Sixth's Liturgies:—"The earth is Thine, O Lord, and all that is contained therein, notwithstanding Thou hast given possession of it to the children of men, to pass over the time of their short pilgrimage in this vale of misery. We heartily pray Thee to send Thy Holy Spirit into the hearts of those that possess the grounds, pastures, and dwelling-places[Pg 237] of the earth, that they, remembering themselves to be Thy tenants, may not rack nor stretch out the rents of their houses and lands, nor yet take unreasonable fines and incomes after the manner of covetous worldlings, but so let them out to others, that the inhabitants thereof may both be able to pay the rents, and also honestly to live and nourish their families, and relieve the poor. Give them grace also to consider that they are but strangers and pilgrims in this world, having here no dwelling-place, but seeking one to come; that they, remembering the short continuance of their life, may be contented with that which is sufficient, and not join house to house and land to land, to the impoverishment of others; but so behave themselves in letting out their lands, tenements, and pastures, that after this life they may be received into everlasting dwelling-places, through, etc."

[E14] "Fleeces" = fleecings, frauds, impositions. It may, perhaps, be used literally, of selling wool at a loss.

[E15] "Ictus sapit." This corresponds to our proverb, "The burnt child dreads the fire," or perhaps more nearly to "Once bit, twice shy." In the "Proverbs of Hendyng" we find it as: "The burnt child fire dreadeth, quoth Hendyng." Ray, in his "Collection of Proverbs," edit. 1737, says: "Piscator ictus sapit; struck by the scorpion fish, or pastinaca, whose prickles are esteemed venomous."

[E16] If Tusser is here writing literally, the price of his book, in "the golden days of good Queen Bess," was only a groat or two at the utmost.—M.

[E17] "Shere" = shire; the construction is—don't think that every bit of land (or county) can profit by following my directions, for soils differ. Compare chapter 19, stanza 8, p. 48.

[E18] "Must keepe such coile;" must bustle about, exert themselves. Cf. Scott's "Lord of the Isles," canto v. stanza 1: "For wake where'er he may, man wakes to care and coil." And Shakspere: "I pray you watch about Signor Leonata's door; for the wedding being there to-morrow, there is a great coil to-night."

[E19] In the edition of 1570 the first stanza of the "Preface to the Buier" reads as follows:

"What lookest thou herein to haue?
Trim verses thy fansie to please?
Of Surry so famous that craue,
Looke nothing but rudenes in these."

The reference in the third line being to Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, author of the Translation of the second and fourth Books of the Æneid of Virgil, and of numerous other poems, who was executed in 1547.

[E20] In the footnote to this Preface it is stated that the metre is peculiar to Shenstone, but this is incorrect, as it is also used by Prior: "Despairing beside a clear stream."

[E21] "The sea for my fish," i.e. for my fishpond.

[Pg 238]

[E22] With "The Ladder to Thrift" we may compare the following "Maxims in -ly," from the Lansdowne MS. 762, f. 16b (see Babees Book, ed. Furnivall, p. 247):

"Aryse erly,
Serue God devowtely,
And the worlde besely,
Doo thy werk wisely,
Yeue thyne almes secretly,
Goo by the waye sadly,
Answer the people demuerly,
Goo to thy mete appetitely,
Sit therat discretely,
Of thy tunge be not to liberally,
Arise therfrom temperally,
Go to thy supper soberly,
And to thy bed merely,
Be in thyn Inne jocundely,
Please thy loue duely,
And slepe suerly."

[E23] "Familie," here used in the sense of the Latin original familia = household, servants. Compare chap. 73, st. 13.

[E24] Compare Shakspere, Richard II. Act ii. sc. 4, 24: "And crossly to the good all fortune goes."

[E25] "To bridle wild otes fantasie," i.e. to restrain the excesses of youth.

[E26] "Well to account of which honest is not;" never think highly of that which is not honourable, or honestly come by.

[E27] Cf. Hebrews xiii. 4: "Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled." Tusser evidently does not appreciate "love in a cottage."

[E28] "Giue ouer to sudgerne, that thinkest to thee;" i.e. make up your mind to settle down in one place and to give up roaming about, if you hope to prosper, lest the grumbling of your hosts and the wants of the nurses prove too expensive for you. Compare "The Dialogue of Wiving and Thriving," ch. 67 stanza 3, p. 152.

[E29] Dr. Mavor suggests that the third line of this stanza should read: "Of tone or them both," "meaning, if we smell the savour of saving or winning or them both."

[E30] A fool and his money are soon parted.

[E31] "Good bargaine a dooing," etc. When you have a chance of making a good bargain, don't let every one know; but when you want to sell anything, then let it be published abroad as widely as possible. In the first case don't hesitate or haggle about it, but "take the ball on the hop;" in the second, don't be in a hurry to take the first offer, if you are not ashamed of what you wish to sell.

[E32] "Of the complaint of such poore tenants as paie rent corne vnto their landlords, I speake not, who are often dealt withall[Pg 239] very hardlie. For beside that in the measuring of ten quarters, for the most part they lose one through the iniquitie of the bushell (such is the greedinesse of the appointed receiuers thereof), fault is found also with the goodnesse and cleannesse of the graine. Wherby some peece of monie must needs passe vnto their purses to stop their mouths withall, or else my lord will not like of the corne: 'Thou are worthie to loose thy lease, etc.' Or if it be cheaper in the market, than the rate allowed for it is in their rents, then must they paie monie, and no corne, which is no small extremitie."—Harrison, part i. p. 301.

[E33] "In this quatrain all the later editions of our author read uniformly misers for michers (thieves or pilferers). What kind of misers 'unthriftiness' would make never seems to have been considered. 'Careless and rash' is a gallicism for carelessness and rashness."—M. "Mychare, capax, cleps, furunculus."—Prompt. Parv.

"Mychers, hedge crepers, fylloks and lushes,
That all the somer kepe dyches and bushes."
—The Hyeway to the Spytell House, ed. Atterson, ii. 11.

See also Townley Mysteries, pp. 216, 308. "Caqueraffe, a base micher, scurvie hagler, lowsie dodger, etc. Caqueduc, a niggard, micher, etc."—Cotgrave.

[E34] "Make hunger thy sauce." This is the proverb "hunger is the best sauce," which is reckoned amongst the aphorisms of Socrates: "Optimum cibi condimentum fames, sitis potus."—Cicero, De Finibus, Bk. II.

[E35] "Mastive, Bandog, Molossus."—Baret's Alvearie, 1580. "The tie-dog or band-dog, so called bicause manie of them are tied up in chaines and strong bonds, in the daie time, for dooing hurt abroad, which is an huge dog, stubborne, ouglie, eager, burthenous of bodie (and therefore but of little swiftnesse), terrible and fearfull to behold, and oftentimes more fierce and fell than anie Archadian or Corsican cur.... They take also their name of the word 'mase' and 'theefe' (or 'master theefe' if you will), bicause they often stound and put such persons to their shifts in townes and villages, and are the principall causes of their apprehension and taking."—Harrison, Descrip. of England, part ii. pp. 44-5. "We han great Bandogs will teare their skins."—Spenser, Shep. Cal. September.

[E36] "The credite of maister," etc. If servants are allowed the credit or trust, which should only be allowed to their master and mistress, much trouble will be the result.

[E37] "Be to count ye wote what," that is, nothing to signify, of little importance.

[E38] "So, twentie lode bushes," etc. So, without proper management, twenty loads of bushes may be so wasted as only to serve for the stopping of a single gap.

[Pg 240]

"A" = one, a single: a very common use in Early English; cf. William of Nassington's "Myrrour of Lyfe," lines 2, 3;

"Fader and Sonne and Haly Gaste
That er a God als we trowe maste"—that is, one God.

[E39] Some, upon Sundays, have their tables covered with smoking dishes, and then have to seek, i.e. do without dinners for the rest of the week.

[E40] "Skarborow warning." Grose says it means, "A word and a blow and the blow first." R. J. S. in Notes and Queries, 1st Ser. i. 170, adds that it is a common proverb in Yorkshire. Fuller states that the saying arose from "Thomas Stafford, who in the reign of Mary, A.D. 1557, with a small company, seized on Scarborough Castle, and before the townspeople had the least notice of their approach." Another explanation is that, if ships passed the castle without saluting it, a shotted gun was fired at them. In a ballad by Heywood another derivation is given:

"This term Scarborow warning grew (some say)
By hasty hanging for rank robbery theare.
Who that was met, but suspect in that way,
Strait he was trust up, whatever he were."

This implies that Scarborough imitated the Halifax gibbet law.—N.& Q. 1st Ser. i. 138. In a letter by Toby Matthew, Bishop of Durham, to the Archbishop of York, Jan. 19, 1603, he writes: "When I was in the midst of this discourse I received a message from my Lord Chamberlain that it was his Majesty's pleasure that I should preach before him on Sunday next, which Scarborough warning did not only perplex me, but so puzzel me as no mervail if somewhat be prætermitted, which otherwise I might have better remembered."—N. & Q. 4th Ser. xii. 408. "Scarborough warning. The antiquity of the phrase is shown by its occurrence in Puttenham's 'Arte of English Poetrie,' ed. 1589. The following is the passage, from p. 199 of Arber's reprint: [We have] 'many such prouerbiall speeches: as, Totnesse is turned French, for a strange alteration: Skarborow warning, for a sodaine commandement, allowing no respect or delay to bethinke a man of his busines.'"—Note by Rev. W. Skeat. See also Ray's Proverbs.

[E41] "Sir I arest yee;" that is, the Sheriff's officer, who, touching your arm, would use these words.

[E42] "Legem pone," a curious old proverbial or cant term for ready money.

"There are so manie Danaes now a dayes,
That love for lucre, paine for gaine is sold;
No true affection can their fancie please,
Except it be a Iove, to raine downe gold
Into their laps, which they wyde open hold;
If legem pone comes, he is receav'd,
When vix haud habes is of hope bereav'd."
—The Affectionate Shepheard, 1594.

[Pg 241]

"But in this there is nothing to bee abated, all their speech is legem pone, or else with their ill custome they will detaine thee."—G. Minshul, Essays in Prison.

[E43] "Oremus," from Lat. orare = to beg, here means making excuses for non-payment of debts.

[E44] "Præsta quæsumus" = lend me, I pray. Compare Preste = a loan, Pretoes = loans, in Halliwell. A lender hates to hear a man say Præsta.

[E45] The word "collects" is used here in its original meaning of short prayers; thus the prayers before the Epistle and Gospel in the Prayer Book are called Collects, as containing briefly the lessons of the Epistle and Gospel.

[E46] "Nor put to thy hand," etc.; that is, do not meddle in the business of other people, and be careful whom you assist, lest by being too free and generous you yourself may be put to inconvenience. Ray gives: "Put not thy hand between the bark and the tree," that is, do not meddle in family affairs.

[E47] Tusser here, while acknowledging the necessity and advantages of the practice of "giving credit" in business, impresses strongly upon his readers the dishonesty and danger of promiscuous borrowing and lending, either to relations or friends, winding up with the advice never to trust a man who has once broken his engagements, without a surety, and never to lend a second time to a man who is angry with you for asking for payment of what he already owes.

[E48] "The foole at the bottom, the wise at the brim;" referring to the proverb, "Better spare at brim than at bottom," that is, "Better be frugal in youth, than be reduced to the necessity of being saving in age." Ray also gives another proverb of a similar character, "'Tis too late to spare when the bottom is dry." "Sera in fundo parsimonia."—Seneca, Epist. i.

[E49] "Felix quem faciunt aliena pericula cautum." Cf. Barbour's Bruce, ed. Skeat, p. 612.

[E50] "Stands thee vpon." Compare Shakspere, King Richard II. Act ii. sc. 3, 138: "It stands your grace upon to do him right;" and,

"It stands me much upon,
To stop all hopes whose growth may damage me."
—Richard III. Act iv. sc. 2, 59.

[E51] "Jankin and Jenikin" are only names for servants in general.

[E52] "The proverb says, and who'd a proverb cross?
That stones, when rolling, gather little moss."
—Vade Mecum for Malt Worms, 1720, p. 6 (part 2).

See also Ray's Proverbs. Cf.

"On the stone that styll doth turne about,
There groweth no mosse."
—Sir T. Wiat, "How to use the Court," l. 4.

A similar proverb occurs in Piers Plowman, A Text, Passus x. l. 101: "Selden moseth the marbelston that men ofte treden." Cf. also, "Syldon mossyth the stone þat oftyn[Pg 242] ys tornyd and wende."—"How the good wife taught her daughter," pr. in Q. Elizabeth's Achademy, ed. Furnivall, p. 39. In the Verses on Lord Burghley's Crest (printed in Thynne's Animaduersions, Chaucer Soc. ed. Furnivall), stanza 32, we read:

"And prouerbe olde was not deuis'd in veyne,
That 'roolinge stone doth neuer gather mosse';
Who lightly leaves in myddest of all his peine,
His former labor frustrates with his losse;
But who continues as he did begynne,
Withe equall course the pointed goale doth wynne."

See also chapt. 77 st. 20, p. 170.

[E53] "Of all [the lawyers] that euer I knew in Essex, Denis and Mainford excelled, till John of Ludlow, alias Mason, came in place, vnto whome in comparison they two were but children: for this last in lesse than three or foure yeares, did bring one man (among manie else-where in other places) almost to extreame miserie (if beggerie be the vttermost) that before he had the shauing of his beard, was valued at two hundred pounds (I speake with the least) and finallie feeling that he had not sufficient wherwith to susteine himselfe and his familie, and also to satisfie that greedie rauenour, which still called vpon him for new fees, he went to bed, and within foure daies made an end of his wofull life, euen with care and pensiuenesse. After his death also he so handled his sonne, that there was neuer sheepe shorne in Maie, so neere clipped of his fleece present, as he was of manie to come: so that he was compelled to let awaie his land, bicause his cattell and stocke were consumed, and he no longer able to occupie the ground."—Harrison, Descript. of Eng. part i. pp. 206-7.

"Daw" = a chattering fool. See Peacock's Glossary (Eng. Dial. Soc.).

[E54] From this stanza it would seem that sportsmen did not hesitate to trespass on the lands of others in former days any more than at present, but in such cases Tusser recommends the "mild answer which turneth away wrath," and sets out the advantages of courteousness and respect to one's superiors.

[E55] "That flesh might be more plentifull and better cheaper, two daies in the weeke, that is Fryday and Saturday, are specially appointed to fish, and now of late yeares, by the prouidence of our prudent Princesse, Elizabeth, the Wednesday also is in a manner restrained to the same order, not for any religion or holinesse supposed to be in the eating of fish rather than of flesh, but onely for the ciuill policie as I haue said. That as God hath created both for man's use, so both being used or refrained at certaine seasons, might by that entercourse be more abundant. And no doubt, if all daies appointed for that purpose were duly obserued, but that flesh and fish both would be much more plentifull, and beare lesse price than they doe. For accounting the Lent season, and all fasting[Pg 243] daies in the yeare together with Wednesday and Friday and Saturday, you shall see that the one halfe of the yeare is ordeined to eate fish in."—Cogan's Haven of Health, ed. 1612, p. 138.

"It is lawfull for euerie man to feed vpon what soeuer he is able to purchase, except it be vpon those daies whereon eating of flesh is especiallie forbidden by the lawes of the realme, which order is taken onelie to the end our numbers of cattell may be the better increased, and that aboundance of fish which the sea yeeldeth, more generallie receiued. Beside this, there is great consideration had in making of this law for the preseruation of the nauie, and maintenance of conuenient numbers of sea faring men, both which would otherwise greatlie decaie, if some meanes were not found whereby they might be increased."—Harrison, Descript. of Eng. part i. p. 144.

The following menu for a fish day is given in the Liber Cure Cocorum, p. 54, ed. Morris:

"For a servise on fysshe day.

Fyrst white pese and porray þou take,
Cover þy white heryng for goddys sake;
Þen cover red heryng, and set abufe,
And mustard on heghe, for goddys lufe;
Þen cover salt salmon on hast,
Salt ele þer wyth on þis course last.
For þe secunde course, so god me glad,
Take ryse and fletande fignade,
Þan salt fysshe and stok fysshe take þou schalle,
For last of þis course, so fayre me falle.
For þe iii cours sowpys done fyne,
And also lamprouns in galentyne,
Bakun turbut and sawmon ibake
Alle fresshe, and smalle fysshe þou take
Þerwith, als troute, sperlynges, and menwus with al,
And loches to horn sawce versance shal."

See also the Babees Book, ed. Furnivall, p. 50.

[E56] "Setteth his soule vpon sixe or on seauen," that is, risks his life on the cast of a die.

[E57] "Sit downe Robin and rest thee." I was inclined to think that this was the burden of some ballad, but Mr. Chappell, to whom I applied, is of opinion that it was not.

"An habitation inforced," etc., i.e. it is better to settle down, even late in life, than not at all. Comp. chap. 10, stanza 8, p. 19.

[E58] For a great portion of the year the only animal food eaten was in a salted state. In the autumn as much meat was cured as would last the winter; and until the pastures had been for some time abundant, that is, not until Midsummer, there were no means of fattening cattle. After the winter months, veal and bacon were welcomed as the precursors of fresh beef; and those who lived[Pg 244] near the sea-coast enjoyed the addition of fresh fish; but the state of the roads prevented the inland parts of the country partaking of this benefit. The consumption of fish during Lent and on other fast-days, comprising a great part of the year, being expressly directed by statute, the people, even after the abolition of the old religion, provided themselves at several large fairs held almost expressly for the sale and distribution of salt-fish.

[E59] "Veale and Bakon is the man," i.e. is the proper food, or is in season.

[E60] "Martilmas beef," beef killed at Martinmas, and dried for winter use. "Biefe salted, dried up in the chimney, Martlemas biefe."—Hollyband's Dict. 1593. See note to l. 383 of Wallace, in Specimens of Eng. Literature, ed. Skeat, p. 391.

"Beefe is a good meate for an Englysshe man, so be it the beest be yonge, and that it be not kowe-flesshe; for olde beefe and kowe-flesshe doth ingender melancolye and leporouse humoures. Yf it be moderatly powderyd, that the groose blode by salte may be exhaustyd, it doth make an Englysshe man stronge, the education of hym with it consyderyd. Martylmas beef, whiche is called 'hanged beef' in the rofe of the smoky howse, is not laudable; it maye fyll the bely, and cause a man to drynke, but it is euyll for the stone, and euyll of dygestyon, and maketh no good iuce. If a man haue a peace hangynge by his syde, and another in his bely, that the whiche doth hange by the syde shall do hym more good, yf a showre of rayne do chaunse, than that the which is in his bely, the appetyde of mans sensualyte notwithstandynge."—Andrew Boorde's Dyetary, E. E. Text Soc. edit. F. J. Furnivall, chap. xvi.

"In a hole in the same Rock was three Barrels of nappy liquour; thither the Keeper brought a good Red-Deere Pye, cold Roast Mutton, and an excellent shooing-horn of hang'd Martimas Biefe."—1639, John Taylor, Part of this Summers Travels, p. 26.

"Bacon is good for carters, and plowe men, the which be euer labouryng in the earth or dunge; but and yf they haue the stone and vse to eate it, they shall synge 'wo be to the pye!' Wherefore I do say that coloppes and egges is as holsome for them as a talowe candell is good for a horse mouth, or a peece of powdred Beefe is good for a blere eyed mare."—A. Boorde, Regyment, fo. K iii. b.

"As for bacon it is in no wise commended as wholsome, especially for students, or such as haue feeble stomacks. But for labouring men it is conuenient according to that Latine prouerbe, grosse meate for grosse men."—Cogan's Haven of Health, p. 116.

[E61] The farmers in old times were greater economists than now. "Old crones and such old things," it seems, fell commonly to their own share, while the best meat was probably sold.—M. Compare also 21. 1.

[Pg 245]

[E62] "All Saints doe laie," etc. All Saints' Day expects or lays itself out for pork and souse, sprats and smelts for the household.

"When it [the bore] is killed, scalded, and cut out, of his former parts is our brawne made, the rest is nothing so fat, and therefore it beareth the name of sowse onelie, and is commonly reserved for the serving-man and hind, except it please the owner to have anie part ther of baked, which are then handed of custome after this manner. The hinder parts being cut off, they are first drawne with lard, and then sodden; being sodden, they are sowsed in claret wine and vineger a certeine space and afterward baked in pasties, and eaten of manie in steed of the wild bore, and trulie it is very good meat. The pestles [legs] may be hanged up a while to drie before they be drawne with lard if you will, and thereby prove the better."—Harrison, Descrip. of Eng. part ii. p. 11.

"Spurlings are but broad Sprats, taken chiefly on our Northern coast; which being drest and pickled as Anchovaes be in Provence, rather surpass them than come behind them in taste and goodness.... As for Red Sprats and Spurlings, I vouchsafe them not the name of any wholesome nourishment, or rather of no nourishment at all; commending them for nothing, but that they are bawdes to enforce appetite and serve well the poor man's turn to quench hunger."—Muffett, p. 169, quoted in The Babees Book, ed. Furnivall. "Smelt = Spirling or Sparling in Scotland, Salmo Sperlanus."—Yarrell, Names of British Fishes. "A Sperlynge, ipimera, sperlingus."—Catholicon Anglicum. See also Glossary to Specimens of Early Eng., ed. Morris and Skeat.

[E63] "Embrings." Ember days or weeks, set apart for consecrating to God the four seasons of the year, and for imploring his blessing by fasting and prayer. They were settled by the Council of Placentia A.D. 1095.—M. Embring is a more correct form, being nearer to A.S. ymbren. A connexion with Ger. quatember is out of the question.

[E64] See as to the law relating to fasting and fish days, note E55 on 10. 51.

[E65] "Leaue anker in mud," i.e. drift, and break away from their anchorage.

[E66] "It is an ill winde turnes none to good," i.e. turns to good for none.

"An yll wynd that blowth no man good,
The blower of whych blast is she;
The lyther lustes bred of her broode
Can no way brede good propertye."
—Song against Idleness, by John Heywood, circa 1540.

"Ah! Sirra! it is an old proverb and a true
I sware by the roode!
It is an il wind that bloues no man to good."
—Marriage of Wit and Wisdom, 1570.

Quoted in Hazlitt's Handbook of Proverbs, p. 240.

[Pg 246]

[E67] "If great she appereth," i.e. if seen through a dense atmosphere, which causes her to appear much larger, it is an indication of approaching rain. The reverse is the case when the atmosphere is rare, and the orb of the moon appears small.

[E68] "Tyde flowing is feared," etc. "The Spaniards think that all who die of chronic diseases breathe their last during the ebb."—The Doctor, p. 207. Compare also in David Copperfield, "Mr. Barkis going out with the tide." Tusser, however, seems to mean that it was the flow and not the ebb which was dangerous to sick persons.


"He that fast spendeth must need borrow,
But when he must pay again, then is all the sorrow."
—MS. of 15th cent. in Rel. Antiqua, vol. i. p. 316.

[E70] September is the month when the annual labours of agriculture begin their round, and it is therefore, justly, put first in the Calendar of farming. Some, indeed, take their bargains from Lady-day; but this is by no means so convenient as Michaelmas.—M.

[E71] The off-going tenant of champion or open field, as is still customary, allows the in-coming tenant to summer fallow that portion of the ground which is destined for wheat. But the occupier of woodland or inclosures holds the whole till the expiration of his term, unless certain stipulations are made by lease; and without a lease, neither the real interest of the tenant nor the landowner can be consulted.—M.

[E72] "Buieng or selling of pig in a poke," i.e. making a blind bargain.

"A good cochnay coke,
Though ye loue not to bye the pyg in the poke,
Yet snatche ye at the poke, that the pyg is in,
Not for the poke, but the pyg good chepe to wyn."
—Heywood's Dialogue (1546), ed. 1562, part ii. cap. 9.

See also Hazlitt's Handbook of English Proverbs, p. 413.

[E73] A gofe is a mow (rick); and the gofe-ladder is for the thresher to ascend and descend, in order to throw down the sheaves with the assistance of the short pitch-fork, while the long was probably for pitching the straw. The straw-fork and rake were to turn the straw from off the threshed corn, and the fan and wing to clean it. A cartnave might be required to stand on in this operation. A casting shovel, such as maltmen use, enables the farmer to select the best and heaviest grain for seed, as they always fly farthest if thrown with equal force.—M.

[E74] A skep is a small basket or wooden vessel with a handle, to fetch corn in and for other purposes.—M.

[E75] "Aperne is an old provincial pronunciation, adopted from a still older napern or nappern; and Halliwell observes, that nappern [Pg 247] is still the pronunciation in the North of England. This word is interesting as illustrating two points: (1) the shifting of r, so that the various pronunciations of apern and apron correspond to the variations brid for bird, and burd for bride; and (2) the loss of the initial n; for apron is for Fr. naperon, a large napkin; see Roquefort and Wedgwood. Naperon, without n and e, is apron; without n and o, it is apern."—Rev. Walter W. Skeat in N. & Q. 1869.

[E76] "To make whyte lethyre. Take halfe an unce of whyte coperose and di. ȝ. of alome, and salle-peter the mowntance of the yolke of an egge, and yf thou wolle have thy skynne thykke, take of whetmele ij handfulle, and that is sufficient for a galone of water; and if thou wolle have thy skynne rynnyng, take of ry mele ij handfulle, and grynd alle thyes saltes smale, and caste hem into lewke warme water, and let heme melt togedyre, and so alle in ewene warme water put therein thy skynne. And if hit be a velome skynne, lett hit be thereinne ix days and ix nyȝtes ... and if hit be a parchement skyne, let hit ly thereinne iv days and iv nyȝtes; ... thanne take coperose of the whyttest the quantité of ij benys for j skynne and the yolke of j egge, and breke hit into a dysse, and than put water over the fyre, and put thereinne thy coperas, and than put thy yolke in thy skyne, and rub hit alle abowte, and thanne ley thy skynne in the seyde water, and let hit ly, ut dictum est."—From the Porkington MS. 15th cent.

[E77] A Pannel and Ped have this difference, the one is much shorter than the other, and raised before and behind, and serves for small burdens; the other is longer and made for Burdens of Corn. These are fastened with a leathern Girt, called a Wantye.—T.R. Miss Mitford, in her "Recollections," writes that her father, who used to ride a favourite gentle blood-mare, had a pad constructed, perched and strapped upon which, and encircled by his arm, she used to accompany him.

[E78] A cart or wagon whose wheels are hooped and clouted with iron is called in Lincoln a shod-cart or shod-wain. In the Paston Letters, ed. Gairdner, vol. ii. p. 245, we have "clot shon" = boots tipped with iron. "Clowte of a shoo, pictasium."—Prompt. Parv. Cf. Milton, Comus, l. 634:

"The dull swain
Treads on it daily with his clouted shoon."

In Lancashire a "Clout-nail" is a large nail used for fixing iron clouts on the wooden axle-trees of carts.

[E79] "Ten sacks," each holding a coome or four bushels, are only sufficient for a single load of wheat; but farms were not so large, nor the produce so great when Tusser wrote.

[E80] A pulling hook is a barbed iron for drawing firing from the wood stack.—M.

[E81] "A nads" = an adze, an instance (like a nall = an awl, above) of the n of the article being joined to the following vowel.[Pg 248] Similarly we have "atte nale" = at the ale-house, a corruption of A.S. æt þan ale.—See Piers Plowman, ed. Skeat, B. Text, Prologue, l. 43. So in Sir Thomas More's Workes, 1557, p. 709, we have "A verye nodypoll nydyote" for idiot. Other instances of the prefixed n are "nonce, a nother, nagares (= augers)." Cf. "One axe, a bill, iiij nagares, ij hatchettes, an ades," etc.—Shakspereana Genealogica, 1869, p. 472.

[E82] "A Douercourt beetle" is explained by Dr. Mavor as "one that is large (like the rood of Dover once so celebrated) and capable of making a great noise," and he adds that "there is an old proverb 'A Dover Court: all speakers and no hearers.'" But this explanation is entirely erroneous: there is no reference whatever to Dover, but, as the following extract will show, a Dovercourt beetle simply means one made of the wood of the elms of Dovercourt in Essex, which were celebrated for their soundness and lasting qualities: "Of all the elms that euer I saw, those in the south side of Douer court, in Essex neere Harwich, are the most notable, for they growe, I meane, in crooked maner, that they are almost apt for nothing else but nauie timber, great ordinance, and beetels; and such thereto is their naturall qualitie, that being vsed in the said behalfe, they continue longer, and more long than anie the like trees in whatsoeuer parcell else of this land, without cuphar [cracking], shaking or cleauing, as I find."—Harrison, Descr. of Eng. part i. p. 341.

[E83] In the Hist. of Hawsted, Suffolk, by Sir J. Cullum, 2nd ed. p. 216, we are told that there, in the 14th century, oxen were as much used as horses; and, in ploughing heavy land, would go forward where horses would stop. "A horse kept for labour ought to have every night the 6th part of a bushel of oats; for an ox, 3½ measures of oats, 10 of which make a bushel, are sufficient for a week."

[E84] "The ploughstaff is alluded to by Strutt (Manners and Customs, ii. 12): 'The ploughman yoketh oxen to the plough, and he holdeth the plough-stilt [i.e. principal hale or handle] in his left hand, and in his right hand the ploughstaff to break the clods.' See plate 32 (vol. i.) in Strutt, and the picture of a plough at work prefixed to Mr. Wright's edition of Piers the Plowman, copied from MS. T. [MS. R. 3. 14, Trin. Coll. Camb.]."—Piers Plowman, ed. Skeat, B. vi. 105.

[E85] "Moether" [and "mother", 16. 14.]. This word is derived by Sir H. Spelman from Danish moer = an unmarried girl. "Puera, a woman chylde, callyd in Cambrydgeshyre a modder." "Pupa, a yonge wenche, a gyrle, a modder."—Elyot's Lat. Dict. 1538. "Fille, a maid, girle, modder, lasse."—Cotgrave. Ben Jonson uses the word in his "Alchymist": "Away, you talk like a foolish mauther."—Act iv. sc. 7. Richard Brome also has it in the Eng. Moor, Act iii. sc. i.:

P. "I am a mother, that do want a service.

Qu. O, thou'rt a Norfolk woman (cry thee mercy,)
Where maids are mothers, and mothers are maids."

"I have been informed by an intelligent friend, who is a native of Norfolk, that on a certain trial in that county, it was asked who was the evidence of what had been stated. The answer was, 'A mather playing on a planchard.' The Judge was nonplussed, till the meaning was explained, namely, 'A girl playing on the floor.'"—M.

[E86] "Hoigh de la roy," that is, excellent or proper; but why, I cannot say.

[E87] A cradle is a three-forked instrument of wood, on which the corn is caught as it falls from the scythe, and thus is laid in regular order. It is heavy to work with; but is extremely useful for cutting barley or oats, which are intended to be put into sheaves.—M.

[E88] Tar was the common salve for all sores in cattle. "Two[Pg 249] pounds of tar to a pound of pitch," is a good composition for sheep marks.—M. "Every shepherd used to carry a tar-box, called a tarre-boyste in the Chester Plays, p. 121, or a terre-powghe (= tar pouch) in P. Pl. Crede, l. 618. It held a salve containing tar which was used for anointing sores in sheep. Compare

"Heare is tarre in a potte
To heale from the rotte."
—Chester Plays, p. 120.

See also History of Agriculture and Prices in England, by J. E. Thorold Rogers, vol. i. p. 31. Note to P. Plowman, ed. Skeat, C. x. 262-264.

[E89] "Sealed and true," i.e. certified and stamped as correct. In Liber Albus, ed. Riley, p. 233, we read: "No brewster or taverner shall sell from henceforth by any measure but the gallon, pottle, and quart; and that