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3.7. Of ſauuage beaſtes and vermines. Cap. 7.

Of ſauuage beaſtes and vermines. Cap. 7.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 IT is none of the leaſt bleſſings wherewith God hath indued thys Iſlande, that it is void of noyſome beaſts, as Lions, Beares, Tygers, Pardes, Wolfes, and ſuch like: by meanes whereof our countrymen may tra|uaile in ſafetie, and our herdes and flockes remayne for the moſt part abroade in the fielde, without any herde man or kéeper.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 This is chiefely ſpoken of the ſouth & ſouth|weſt part of the Iſlande. For whereas we that dwell on this ſide of the Twede, maye ſafely boaſt of our ſecuritie in this behalfe. Yet can not the ſcottes doe the lyke in euery point with in their kingdome, ſith they haue grieuous Wolfes continually conuerſaunt among them to the generall hinderaunce of their huſbandmen, and no ſmal damage vn|to the inhabiters of thoſe quarters. The hap|py & fortunate want of theſe beaſts in Eng|lande is vniuerſally aſcribed to the pollitike gouernement of king Edgar, who to the in|tent the whole Countrie might once be clen|ſed and clerely ridde of them, charged the conquered Welchmen (who were then pe|ſtured with theſe rauenous creatures aboue meaſure) to paye him a yearely tribute of Wolfes ſkinnes, to be gathered within the lande. He appointed them thereto a certaine number of thrée hundred, with frée liberty for their prince to hunt and purſue them ouer al quarters of the realme as our Chronicles doe report. Some there be which write how Ludwall Prince of Wales payde yearely to king Edgar this tribute of 300. Wolfes, and that by meanes thereof within the com|paſſe and terme of foure yeres none of thoſe noyſome creatures were left within Wales and England. Since this tyme alſo we read not that anye Wolfe hath béene ſéene here that hath bene bredde within the bondes and limites of our country. Howbeit there haue béene diuers brought ouer from beyonde the ſea for gréedineſſe of gaine & to make money onely by the gaſing and gaping of the people vpon them, who couet oft to ſée them beyng ſtraunge beaſtes in their eyes and ſeldome knowne in Englande.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 Of Foxes we haue ſome but no great ſtore,Foxes Badgiers. and alſo Badgiers in our ſandy & light groundes, where woodes, firzes, broome, and plentie of ſhrubbes are to ſhrowde them in, EEBO page image 118 when they be from their borrowes, and ther|to Warrens of Coneys at hand to féede vp|on at will. Otherwiſe in claie which we call ye cledgie mould, we ſeldome here of any, be|cauſe the moiſture and toughneſſe of the ſoile is ſuch, as will not ſuffer them to drawe and make their borrowes depe. Certes if I may fréely ſay what I thinke, I ſuppoſe that theſe two kindes (I meane Foxes and Badgers) are rather preſerued by Gentlemẽ to hunt & haue paſtime with all at their owne plea|ſures, then otherwiſe ſuffered to lyue, as not able to be deſtroyed becauſe of theyr greate numbers. For ſuch is the ſcantitye of them here in England in compariſon of the plen|tie that is to be ſéene in other countryes, and ſo earneſtly are the inhabitants bent to roote thẽ out: that except it had bene to beare thus wt the recreations of their ſuperiors, it could not otherwiſe haue ben choſen, but that they ſhould haue bene vtterly deſtroyed by many yeares agone.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 I might here intreat largely of other ver|mine, as the Polcate, the Miniuer, the Wea|ſel, Stote, Squirrill, Fitchew, and ſuch like. Alſo of the Otter and Beuer,Beuers. of which, as the firſt ſortes are plentifull in euery woode and hedgerow: ſo theſe latter, eſpecially the Ot|ter,Otters. (for to ſay the truth we haue not manye Beuers, but only in the Teiſis in Wales) is not wanting or to ſéeke in many ſtreames & riuers. But it ſhal ſuffice in this ſort to haue named them as I doe alſo the Martern,Marter|nes. al|though for number I worthily doubt whe|ther that of our Beuers or Marternes, may be thought to be the leſſe.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 Other pernicious beaſtes we haue not ex|cept you repute the great plentie of red and fallow Deare, and ſtore of Conies amongſt the hurtful ſort. Which, although that of thẽ|ſelues they are not offenſiue at all, yet theyr great numbers are thought to be very preiu|dicial, and therfore iuſtly reproued of many as are in lyke ſort our huge flocks of ſhéepe, where on the greateſt parte of our ſoyle is emploied almoſt in euery place. The male of the red Deare was ſometime called among the Saxons a ſtaggon,Stagges. but now a ſtagge, or vpon ſome conſideratiõ an Harte, as the fe|male is an Hinde. And this is one parcell of the Venery wherof we intreated before, and whoſe proper dwelling is in the large and wooddy forreſts. The fallow deare as Bucks and Does, are nouryſhed in Parkes, & Con|nys in warrens and borrowes. As for Hares they runne at theyr owne aduenture, except ſome Gentleman or other for hys pleaſure doe make an incloſure for them. Of theſe alſo the ſtagge is accompted for the moſt no|ble game, the fallow Deare is the next, the [...] the Roe (whereof wée haue indifferent ſtore) and laſt of all the Hare: all which (notwyth|ſtanding our cuſtome) are paſtimes more méete for Ladies and Gentlewomen to ex|erciſe, then for men of courage to followe, whoſe hunting ſhould practiſe theyr armes in taſting of theyr manhoode and dealing wt ſuch beaſtes as eftſoones wyll turne agayne and offer them the hardeſt, rather then theyr féete, whych many tymes may cary dyuers from the fielde. Surely this noble kinde of hunting onely did great Princes frequent [...] times paſt, as it may yet appeare by the hy|ſtories of theyr times, and there to (beſ [...] that whych we read of the vſuall hunting of the Princes and Kings of Scotland, of the wild Bull, Woolfe. &c.) the example of king Henry the ſecond of England: who diſday|ning as he termed it to followe or purſue to|wards, cheriſhed of ſet purpoſe ſundry kinde of wilde beaſtes at Woodſtocke, and one or two other places in England, whych he wal|led about wyth hard ſtone, & where he would often fight wyth them hande to hande, when they did turne againe & make any reiſe vpon him.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 King Henrye the fift in hys beginning, thought it a mere ſcoffery to purſue any fol|low Deare wyth hounds or greyhounds, but ſuppoſed hym ſelfe alwayes to haue done a ſufficient acte, when he had tired them by his owne trauaile on foote, and ſo kylled them wyth hys handes, in the vpſhot of that exer|ciſe and ende of hys recreation. And thus [...] very many in lyke ſort wyth the Harte, as I doe reade. But I thincke yt was very long [...]|gone, when men were farre higher and ſwif|ter then they are now, and yet I deny not but any hunting of the redde Deare is a ryght Princely paſtime. In diuers forren cuntries they cauſe theyr redde and fallow Deare to draw the plowgh as we do our Oxen and hor|ſes. In ſome places alſo they milke theyr Hindes as we doe here our Kine and Got [...]s. [...] And the experience of this latter is noted by Gyraldus Cambrienſis to haue béene ſéene and vſed in Wales, where he did eate chée [...]e made of hindes milke, at ſuch time as Bald|wine Archbiſhop of Caunterburie preached the Croyſaide there, when they were both lodged in a Gentlemans houſe, whoſe wy [...]e of purpoſe kept a dairy of the ſame. As for ye plowing wyth Vres (whych I ſuppoſe to be vnlikely) and Alkes a thyng commonly vſed in the Eaſt countries, here is no place to ſpeake of it, ſince we now want theſe kinde of beaſts. Neither is it my purpoſe to intreat of other thyngs then are to be ſéene in Eng|land, EEBO page image 109 wherfore I wil omitte to ſay any more of wilde and ſauage beaſtes at thys tyme, thinking my ſelfe to haue ſpoken already ſuf|ficiently of this matter, if not to much in the iudgement of the curious.

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