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2.11. Of Fayres and Markettes. Cap. 11.

Of Fayres and Markettes. Cap. 11.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 THere are as I take it, few great townes in England, that haue not their weekely Markets, in which al maner of prouiſion for houſhold, is to be bought and ſoulde, for eaſe and benefite of the countrey rounde about, wherby as it commeth to paſſe that no buy|er ſhall make any great iourney in the pur|ueighaunce of his neceſſities, ſo no occupies ſhall haue occaſion to trauayle farre of with his commodities, except it be to ſéeke for the higheſt prices, which commonly are néere vnto great cities, where rounde and ſpée|dieſt vtteraunce is alwayes to be had. And as theſe haue béene in tymes paſt erected for the benefite of the realme, ſo are they in many places to to much abuſed: for the relief and eſe of the buyer, is not ſo much intended in them, as the benefite of the ſeller. Neyther are the Maieſtrats for the moſt part ſo care|full in their offices, as of ryght and dewtye they ſhoulde bee, for in moſt of theſe mar|kettes neyther ſizes of breade nor orders for goodneſſe of graine and other commodities, that are brought thither to be ſoulde are any whit looked vnto, but eache one ſuffered to ſell or ſet vp, what, and how himſelfe lyſteth, & this is one euident cauſe of darth in time of great abundance.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 2 I coulde if I woulde exemplifie in many, but I will touch no one particularly. Certes it is rare to ſée in any market the aſſize of breade well kept according to the ſtatute, howbeit I finde, in lieu thereof ſuch headdy ale and béere in moſt of them, as for the mightyneſſe thereof among ſuch as ſéeke it out, is commonlye called huffecappe, the madde Dogge, father whoreſonne, Aungels foode, Dragons milke &c. And this is more to be noted, that when one of late fell by Gods prouidence, into a troubled conſcience, after he had conſidered well of his rekeleſſe lyfe, and daungerous eſtate: another thinking be|lyke to change his colour and not his mind, caryed hym ſtraight to the ſtrongeſt ale; as to the next Phiſition. It is incredible [...] ſay how our Maultbugges lug at this liquor, euen as pigges ſhoulde lye in a rowe, lug|ging at their dames teates, tyll they lye ſtill againe, & be not able to wagge. Neyther [...] Romulus and Remus ſucke their ſhée Wolfe Lupa, wyth ſuch eger & ſharpe deuotion as theſe men, hale at hufcappe, tyll they be read as cockes, and litle wyſer thẽ their combe [...]; But howe am I fallen from the mercate, into the Ale houſe. In returning therfore vn|to EEBO page image 86 to my purpoſe, I find therfore that in corne great abuſe [...] daily ſuffered, to the great preiudice of the towne & countrey, eſpecially the poore artificer & houſeholder, which til|leth no lande, but labouring all the wéeke to buy a buſhell or two of corne on the merra [...]e daie, can there haue none for his money, be|cauſe bodgers, loders, and common carry|ers of Graine, doe not onely buy vp all, but gyue about the pryce, to be ſerued of great quantities. Shall I go any farther, well I will ſaye yet a little more, and ſomewhat by mine owne experience. At Myghelmas tyme poore men muſt ſell theyr graine that they may paye their rentes. So long then as the poore man hath to ſell, ryche men wyll brynge out none, but rather buy vppe that which the poore bring vnder pretence of ſéede corne, becauſe one wheat often ſowen with|out chaunge of ſéede, will ſoone decay and be conuerted into darnell. For this cauſe there|fore they muſt néedes buy in the markettes, though they be twentye myles of and where they be [...] knowne, promiſing there to ſend ſo much to theyr next market, to performe I wote not when.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 2 3 4 If thys ſhyft ſerue not (neither doth the foxe vſe alwayes one tracke for feare of a ſnare) they wil compound wt ſome one of the towne where the market is holden, who for a pot of hufcappe or mery go downe, wyll not let to buy it for them, & that in his owne name. Or elſe they wage one poore man or other, to become a bodger, & thereto get him a ly|cence vpon ſome forged ſurmize, which be|ing done, they will féede him with money, to buy for them till he hath filled theyr loſſes, and then if he can doe any good for himſelfe ſo it is, if not, they wyll gyue him ſomewhat for his paines at this [...]y [...]le, and reſerue him for another yeare. How many of theſe pr [...]|ders ſtumble vppon blynde créekes at the ſea coſt, I wote not well, but that ſome haue ſo done vnder other mens winges, the cauſe is to playne. But who dare finde faulte with thẽ, when they haue once a lycence, though it be but ſo ſerue a meane Gentlemans houſe with corne, who hath caſt vp at his talage be|cauſe he b [...]aſtreth how he can buy his graine in ye market better cheape, thẽ he can ſ [...]w his lãd, as the [...] graſier often doth alſo vpon ye like deuiſe. If any man come to buy a buſhel or two for his expences vnto ye market croſſe, aunſwere is made, forſooth here was one e|uen nowe that badde me money for it, and I hope he will haue it. And to saye the truth, these bodgers are faire chapme(n), for there are no more words with them, but let me see it, what shall I giue you, knitte it vp, I will haue it, go cary it to such a chamber. But to proceede by this tyme the poore occupier hath all solde his croppe for neede of money, beyng readye paraduenture to buy againe ere longe. And nowe is the whole sale of corne in the great occupyers handes, who hytherto haue threshed lyttle or none of their own, but bought vp of other men, so much as they coulde come by. Hencefoorth also they begin to sel, not by the quarter or loade at the first,For ma|ring of the mar|ket. but by the bushell or two, or an horselode at the most, therby to be seene to keepe the market, eyther for a shewe, or to make men eger to buy, and so as they may haue it for money, not to regarde what they pay. And thus corne waxeth deare, but it will be dearer the next market day. It is possible also that they myslyke the pryce in the begynnyng for whole yeare insuing, as men supposing that corne will be litle woorth for this, and of better price in the next yeare. Herevpon then wyll they threshe out three partes of the olde corne, toward the latter ende of the sommer, when newe commeth a pace to hande, and cast the same into the fourth vnthreshed, where it shall lye vntyll the next Spryng, or peraduenture tyl it must and putrifie. Or else they will gyrde their sheues of by the hand and stacke it vp of newe in lesse roume to thende it may not onely appeare lesse in quantity, but also gyue place to the corne that is yet to come into the barne, or growing the field. If there happen to be such plentye in the market vpon any market day, that they can not sell at their owne price, then wil they set it vp in some friendes house, against an other or the thirde day, and not bringe it foorth vntyll they lyke of the sale. If they sell any at home, beside harder measure, it shal be dearer to the poore man by two pence or a groate in a bushell then they maye sell it in the market. But as these things are worthy redresse, so I wyshe that God woulde once open their eyes that deale thus, to see there owne errours: for as yet some of them lyttle care howe many poore men suffer extremitie, so that they may fill their purses, and carye awaye the gaine. I coulde saye more but this is euen ynough, and more peraduenture then I shall be well thanked for: yet true it is that some thinke it no trespasse. This moreouer is to be lamented, that one generall measure is not in vse thorowout all Englande, but euery mercate towne hath in a maner a seuerall measure, and the lesser it be, the moe sellers it draweth to resort vnto the same. It is oft founde likewise, that diuers vnco(n)scionable dealers haue one measure to sell by, and another to buy with all EEBO page image 96 all, the lyke is also in weightes. Wherfore it were verye good that theſe two were re|duced vnto one ſtanderd, that is, one buſhell, one pound, one quarter one hũdred, one tale, one number, ſo ſhould things in time fal into better order, & fewer cauſes of contention be mooued in this land. But more of this heraf|ter in the next booke, where I haue inſerted a litle treatize, which I ſometimes collected of our weights, & meaſures, and their compa|riſon with thoſe of the auncient Gréekes and Romaines. To cõclude therfore in our mar|kets all things are to be ſolde neceſſarie for mans vſe, and there is our prouiſion made commonly for all the wéeke inſuing. There|fore as there are no great townes without one wéekely market at the leaſt, ſo there are very fewe of them that haue not one or twoo fayres or more within the compaſſe of the yeare aſſigned vnto them by the prince. And albeit that ſome of them are not much bet|ter then the common kirkemeſſes beyonde the ſea, yet there are diuers not inferiour vn|to the greateſt martes in Europe, as Stur|bridge Faire neare to Cambridge, Bar|tholomewe fayre at London, Linne mart, Cold fayre at Newport pond for cattell, and diuers other, all which or at the leaſtwyſe the greateſt part of them (to the end I may with the more eaſe to the reader & leſſe tra|uayle to my ſelf fulfill my taſke in their reci|tall.) I haue ſet down according to ye names of the monethes wherin they are holden at ye end of this booke, where you ſhall finde them at large, as I borowed the ſame frõ Stow.

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