The Welsh Embassador – Act Four, Scene Two

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Enter VOLTIMAR and the Clown.

VOLTIMAR
How say’st thou, turn’d away?

CLOWN
Just as a cutpurse turn’d of the ladder of the law, so was I that very day when you came and told my lady she must give up housekeeping.  Within an hour after, that old mumblecrust lord her father coited me out of doors.

<V>OLTIMAR
But the kind and she are in tune again and thou may’st feed upon her.

<CLOWN>
The devil feed upon her.  They say the Welsh embassador will have her, and <will> car<r>y her into Wales.  And what shall I do there?

<VOLTIMAR>
<Eat toasted cheese.>

CLOWN
Why, I never eat cheese in m life, and if I should but cry, “Foh,” when ‘tis a toasting, <I> should have my throat cut before my face and be ne’er the wiser.

VOLTIMAR
A servingman’s life thou see’st walks but upon rotten crutches.

CLOWN
Crutches, when I see a horse that has done good to his country lie dead in a cart to be carried to the doghouse, think I to myself there’s the reward of service.

VOLTIMAR
A good observation

CLOWN
Or when I spy a cat hang’d for some petty crime that has been an excellent hunter, say I, “Here’s the fag end of a poor soldier that has rid his country of enemies.

VOLTIMAR
You rascal; compare a soldier to a cat?

CLOWN
Oh dear, Captain, cry you mercy.  I did not mind you.  I’ll be no longer a creature, what sift soever I put myself to.

VOLTIMAR
What then?

CLOWN
A mere animal rather; there’s one image of invention if you could carve me into’t I were made forever.

VOLTIMAR
What image?

CLOWN
Get the king’s or some of his lords’ letters to create me chronicler.

VOLTIMAR
Chronicler?  Thou’rt not fit for’t.  Th’ast no learning nor wit to do it.

CLOWN
No wit?  I must put out nothing but once in ten year.  In meantime I can creep into opinion by balductum rhymes and play scrap fooleries.  Wit?  An arrant ass may carry that burden and never kick for it.

VOLTIMAR
Since th’art so set upon it, I’ll speak and warrant thee the title of a chronicler.

CLOWN
The name, the foolish style is all I desire to climb over.

VOLTIMAR
When any of your collections are mellow, show ‘em to the king.  I muse they come not.

CLOWN
Who, captain?

VOLTIMAR
The embassador’s man, and the Irish footman new come over.  We promis’d to be merry here in my chamber for a spurt or so; they are a couple of honest-hearted mad rascals.

Enter EDMOND and ELDRED.

 CLOWN
See, Captain.

VOLTIMAR
Welcome!

EDMOND
By did hawnd, Capten Voltimar, de king bid me seek for dee and to come away apace to him.

VOLTIMAR
Time enough.  Since we are met, I’ll steal out of the king’s glass one quarter of an hour to be jovial.

ELDRED
But where is wine and good sear to be jawful and pipes and fiddles to shake our heel at?

VOLTIMAR
Your good seer, look you, is in bottles.  Here’s my armoury. These are headpieces will fit you.

CLOWN
With a murrain.

VOLTIMAR
And now you talk of fiddling.  A musician dwells at very next wall.  I’ll step to him, entertain thou these gentleman the whilst, as we drink they shall sound.

EDMOND
Crees sa me if I hear de pipes go I cannot forbear to dance an Irish hay.

ELDRED
As good hay in Wales, Rees ap Meridith was dance too.

CLOWN
Hey then for England!  If my legs stand still, hang me.

VOLTIMAR
Good sport, I’ll go string the music for you.                                                       [Exit.

CLOWN
I’th’meantime, because ‘tis service to be idle, pray Master Reese ap Shon, what is the reason that we Englism men, when the cuckoo is upon entrance, say the Welsh Embassador is coming?

ELDRED
Let any rascal son of whores come into Cardigan, Flint, Morioneth, Clamorgan, or Brecknock and dare prade so.  Was such a mighty wonder to see an embassador of Wales?  Why has her not had kings and queens and prave princes of Wales?

EDMOND
‘I’faat hast tow.

ELDRED
But I now can tell you, for many summers ago out valiant comragues and fierce Prittons about cuckoo times come, and with Welse hook hack and hoff and mawl your English porderers, and so fright the ‘ymen that they to still their wrawling bastards cry out, hush’d the Welse embassador comes.

CLOWN
I am satisfied.  Now, Master Crammo, one question to you.  What is the reason all the chimney sweepers in England are for the most part Irish?

EDMOND
I shall tell de why.  Saint Patrick, dow know’st keeps purgatory<y.  So if Saint> Patrick be content to make de fires, ‘tis no shame fo<r Irishmen> to sweep de chimneys.

ELDRED
‘Tis prave answer.

CLOWN
And I hug thee sweet Tory for it.

Enter VOLTIMAR.

 VOLTIMAR
I give but the Q and the music speaks.  I cannot stay.  Come, on your knees.  A health to King Athelstane!

ELDRED
Was pledge her in no liquors, but her own country’s whey to metheglin.

VOLTIMAR
There’s metheglin for you.

EDMOND
And I’faat’la I shall pledge King Aplestanes in usque bah or nothing.

VOLTIMAR
There’s usqua for you.

CLOWN
I’ll pledge it in ale, in aligant, cider, perry, metheglin, usquebagh, minglium, manglum, purr, in him, mum, aquam, quaquam, claret, or sacum, for an Englishman is a horse that drinks of all waters.

VOLTIMAR
To’t then.  When?                                                                                              [Flourish.

CLOWN
Off.

ELDRED
Super naglums.                                                                                                         [Dance.

EDMOND
Hey, for Saint Patrick’s honour!

ELDRED
Saint Tavy for Wales!

CLOWN
Saint George for England!

VOLTIMAR
Enough, drink what you will.  I must hence.                                                        [Exit.

EDMOND
Kara magus.

CLOWN
This dancing jogs all my dinner out of my belly.  I am as hungry as a huntsman; and now I talk of meat, why does a Welshman love a toasted cheese so well?

ELDRED
Why does cockney pobell love toast and putter so well?

CLOWN
And why onions and leeks you?

ELDRED
And why a whore’s plind seeks you?  Awl countries love one tevices or others.

CLOWN
True.  You love freeze and goats, and Welsh hooks, and whey and flannel and fighting.

ELDRED
And you love udcocks, and praveries, and kanaveries, and fiddling and fistings and prave ences with rotten trenches, and a great teal of prabbings, but little fightings.

CLOWN
One for one, and what loves my Irishman here?

EDMOND
‘I’faat’la, I love shamrocks, bonny clabbo, soft bogs, a great many cows, a garron, an Irish harp, clean trooses, and a dart.

CLOWN
But not a fart.

EDMOND
In dy nose, in dy teet, all de farts let in Ireland are put into bottles for Englshmen to drink off.  A pos upon dy nyes, by dis hawnd, I shall trust my skeen into dy rotten guts when agen tow anger me.                                                                     [Exit.

PENDA
[Within.] What, Reese, wa ho ap shon!

ELDRED
Was here, was here.                                                                                                     [Exit.

CLOWN
So; now pump I for invention full sea swell
Of wit that I may write a chronicle.                                                                          [Exit.

Proceed to the Next Scene

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