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3.10. Of prouision made for the poore. Chap. 10.

Of prouision made for the poore. Chap. 10.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 _THere is no common-wealth at this daie in Europe, wher|in there is not great store of poore people, and those neces|sarilie to be relieued by the welthier sort, which otherwise would starue and come to vt|ter confusion.Thrée sorts of poore. With vs the poore is commonlie diuided into thrée sorts, so that some are poore by impotencie, as the fatherlesse child, the aged, blind and lame, and the diseased person that is iudged to be incurable: the second are poore by ca|sualtie, as the wounded souldier, the decaied house|holder, and the sicke person visited with grieuous and painefull diseases: the third consisteth of thrift|lesse poore, as the riotour that hath consumed all, the vagabund that will abide no where, but runneth vp and downe from place to place (as it were séeking worke and finding none) and finallie the roge and strumpet which are not possible to de diuided in sun|der, but runne too and fro ouer all the realme, chéefelie kéeping the champaine soiles in summer to auoid the scorching heat, and the woodland grounds in winter to eschew the blustering winds.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 EEBO page image 183 For the first two sorts, that is to saie, the poore by impotencie, and the poore by casualtie, which are the true poore in deed, and for whome the word dooth bind vs to make some dailie prouision: there is order taken through out ouerie parish in the realme, that weekelie collection shall be made for their helpe and sustentation, to the end they should not scatter abroad, and by begging here and there ann [...]ie both towne and countrie. Authoritie also is giuen vnto the suffices in euerie countie, and great penalties appointed for such as make default, to that the in|tent of the statute in this behalfe be trulie executed, according to the purpose and meaning of the same, so that these two sorts and sufficientlie prouided for: and such as can liue within the limits of their allow|ance (as each one will doo that is godlie and well dis|posed) may well forbeare to rome and renge about. But if they refuse to be supported by this benefit of the law, and will rather indeuour by going to and fro to mainteine their idle trades, then are they ad|iudged to be parcell of the third sort, and so in stéed of courteous refreshing at home, are often corrected with sharpe execution, and whip of iustice abroad. Manie there are, which notwithstanding the rigor of the lawes prouided in that behalfe, yeeld rather with this libertie (as they call it) to be dailie vnder the feare and terrour of the whip, than by abiding where they were borne or bred, to be prouided for by the de|uotion of the parishes. I found not long since a riote of these latter sort, the effect whereof insueth. Idle beggers are such either through other mens occa|sion, or through their owne default.A thing of|ten séene. By other mens occasion (as one waie for example) when some coue|tous man, such I meane as haue the cast or right veine, dailie to make beggers inough wherby to pe|ster the land, espieng a further commoditie in their commons, holds, and [...], dooth find such meanes as thereby to wipe manie out of their occupiengs, and turne the same vnto his priuate gaines. Here|vpon it followeth, that although the wise and better minded,At whose hands shall the bloud of these men be required? doo either forsake the realme for altogether, and seeke to liue in other countries, as France, Ger|manie, Barbarie, India, Moscouia, and verie Cale|cute, complaining of no [...] to be left for them at home, doo so behaue themselues that they are worthi|lie to be accompted among the second sort: yet the greater part commonlie hauing nothing to staie vpon are wilfull, and there vpon doo either prooue idle beggers, or else continue starke théeues till the gal|lowes doo eat them vp, which is a lamentable case. Certes in some mans iudgements these things are but trifles, and not worthie the regarding. Some also doo grudge at the great increase of people in these daies, thinking a necessarie brood of cattell farre bet|ter than a superbluous augmentation of mankind. But I can liken such men best of all vnto the pope and the diuell, who practise the hinderance of the fur|niture of the number of the elect to their vttermost, to the end the authoritie of the one vpon earth, the de|ferring of the locking vp of the other in euerlasting chaines, and the great gaines of the first may conti|nue and indure the longer. But if it should come to passe that any forren inuasion should be made, which the Lord God forbid for his mercies sake! then should these men find that a wall of men is farre better than stackes of corne and bags of monie, and com|plaine of the want when it is too late to séeke reme|die. The like occasion caused the Romans to deuise their law Agraria: but the rich not liking of it, and the couetous vtterlie condemning it as rigorous and vnprofitable, neuer ceased to practise distur|bance till it was quite abolished. But to proceed with my purpose.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Such as are idle beggers through their owne de|fault are of two sorts, and continue their estates ei|ther by casuall or méere voluntarie meanes: those that are such by casuall means, are in the beginning tustlie to be referred either to the first or second sort of poore afore mentioned: but degenerating into the thristlesse sort, they doo what they can to continue their miserie, and with such impediments as they haue to straie and wander about, as creatures abhor|ring all labour and euerie honest exercise. Certes I call these casuall meanes, not in respect of the origi|nall of their pouertie, but of the continuance of the same, from whence they will not be deliuered, such is their owne vngratious lewdnesse, and froward disposition. The voluntarie meanes proceed from outward causes, as by making of corosiues, and ap|plieng the same to the more fleshie parts of their bo|dies: and also laieng of ra [...]bane, sper [...]wort, crow|foot, and such like vnto their whole members, thereby to raise pitifull and odious sores, and mooue the harts of the goers by such places where they lie, to yerne at their miserie, and therevpon bestow large almesse vpon them. How artificiallie they beg, what forcible spéech, and how they select and choose out words of ve|hemencie, whereby they doo in maner coniure or ad|sure the goer by to pitie their cases, I passe ouer to re|member, as iudging the name of God and Christ to be more conuersant in the mouths of none: and yet the presence of the heuenlie maiestie further off from no men than from this vngratious companie. Which maketh me to thinke that punishment is farre mee|ter for them than liberalitie or almesse, and sith Christ willeth vs cheeflie to haue a regard to himselfe and his poore members.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Unto this nest is another sort to be referred, more sturdie than the rest, which hauing sound and perfect lims, doo yet notwithstanding sometime counterfeit the possession of all sorts of diseases. Diuerse times in their apparell also they will be like seruing men or laborers: oftentimes they can plaie the mariners, and séeke for ships which they neuer lost. But in fine, they are all théeues and caterpillers in the common|wealth, and by the word of God not permitted to eat, sith they doo but licke the sweat from the true labo|rers browes, & beereue the godlie poore of that which is due vnto them, to mainteine their excesse, consu|ming the charitie of well disposed people bestowed vpon them, after a most wicked & detestable maner.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 It is not yet full thréescore yeares since this trade began: but how it hath prospered since that time, it is easie to iudge, for they are now supposed of one sex and another, to amount vnto aboue 10000 per|sons; as I haue heard reported. Moreouer, in coun|terfeiting the Egyptian roges, they haue deuised a language among themselues, which they name Can|ting, but other pedlers French, a speach compact thirtie yeares since of English, and a great number of od words of their owne deuising, without all or|der or reason: and yet such is it as none but them|selues are able to vnderstand. The first deuiser there|of was hanged by the necke, a iust reward no doubt for his deserts,Thomas Harman. and a common end to all of that pro|fession. A gentleman also of late hath taken great paines to search out the secret practises of this vn|gratious rable. And among other things he setteth downe and describeth thrée & twentie sorts of them, whose names it shall not be amisse to remember, wherby ech one may take occasion to read and know as also by his industrie what wicked people they are, and what villanie remaineth in them.

The seuerall disorders and degrees amongst our idle vagabonds.

    Compare 1577 edition: 1
  • 1 Rufflers.
  • 2 Uprightmen.
  • 3 Hookers or Anglers.
  • 4 Roges.
  • EEBO page image 184 5 Wild roges.
  • 6 Priggers or pran|sers.
  • 7 Palliards.
  • 8 Fraters.
  • 9 Abrams.
  • 10 Freshwater mari|ners,
  • or whipiacks.
  • 11 Dummerers.
  • 12 Drunken tinkers.
  • 13 Swadders or ped|lers.
  • 14 Iarkemen or patri|coes.

¶Of women kind.

    Compare 1577 edition: 1
  • 1 Demanders for glim|mar
  • or fire.
  • 2 Baudie baskets.
  • 3 Mortes.
  • 4 Autem mortes.
  • 5 Walking mortes.
  • 6 Doxes.
  • 7 Delles.
  • 8 Kinching mortes.
  • 9 Kinching cooes.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 The punishment that is ordeined for this kind of people is verie sharpe, and yet it can not restreine them from their gadding: wherefore the end must néeds be martiall law, to be exercised vpon them, as vpon théeues, robbers, despisers of all lawes, and eni|mies to the common-wealth & welfare of the land. What notable roberies, pilferies, murders, rapes, and stealings of yoong children, burning, breaking and disfiguring their lims to make them pitifull in the sight of the people, I need not to rehearse: but for their idle roging about the countrie, the law ordei|neth this maner of correction. The roge being ap|prehended, committed to prison and tried in the next assises (whether they be of gaole deliuerie or sessions of the peace) if he happen to be conuicted for a vaga|bond either by inquest of office, or the testimonie of two honest and credible witnesses vpon their oths, he is then immediatlie adiudged to be gréeuouslie whipped and burned through the gristle of the right eare, with an hot iron of the compasse of an inch a|bout, as a manifestation of his wicked life, and due punishment receiued for the same. And this iudge|ment is to be executed vpon him, except some ho|nest person woorth fiue pounds in the quéenes books in goods, or twentie shillings in lands, or some rich housholder to be allowed by the iustices, will be bound in recognisance to reteine him in his seruice for one whole yeare. If he be taken the second time, and proued to haue forsaken his said seruice, he shall then be whipped againe, bored likewise through the other eare and set to seruice: from whence if he de|part before a yeare be expired, and happen afterward to be attached againe, he is condemned to suffer paines of death as a fellon (except before excepted) without benefit of clergie or sanctuarie, as by the sta|tute dooth appeare. Among roges and idle persons finallie, we find to be comprised all proctors that go vp and downe with counterfeit licences, coosiners, and such as gad about the countrie, vsing vnlawfull games, practisers of physiognomie and palmestrie, tellers of fortunes, fensers, plaiers, minstrels, iug|glers, pedlers, tinkers, pretensed schollers, shipmen, prisoners gathering for fees, and others so oft as they be taken without sufficient licence. From a|mong which companie our beare wards are not ex|cepted, and iust cause: for I haue read that they haue either voluntarilie, or for want of power to master their sauage beasts, béene occasion of the death and deuoration of manie children in sundrie countries by which they haue passed, whose parents neuer knew what was become of them. And for that cause there is & haue béene manie sharpe lawes made for bear|wards in Germanie, wherof you may read in other. But to our roges. Each one also that harboreth or aideth them with meat or monie, is taxed and com|pelled to fine with the quéenes maiestie for euerie time that he dooth so succour them, as it shall please the iustices of peace to assigne, so that the taxation excéed not twentie shillings, as I haue béene infor|med. And thus much of the poore, & such prouision as is appointed for them within the realme of England.

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