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LITTELL'S LIVING AGE.-No. 268.-7 JULY, 1849.
AFTERWARDS MISTRESS MILTON.
From Sharpe's Magazine. above. Such, and no more, is Rose's house !
But she is happy, for she carne running forthe, THE MAIDEN AND MARRIED LIFE OF MARY
soe soone as she hearde Clover's feet, and helped POWELL,
me from my saddle all smiling, tho' she had not expected to see us. We had curds and creame :
and she wished it were the time of strawberries, Forest Hill, Oxon. May 1st, 1643. for she sayd they had large beds ; and then my
SeventEENTH birth-daye. A gyp- father and ye boys went forthe to looke for Master sie woman at y gate woulde faine have tolde my Agnew. Then Rose took me up to her chamber, fortune ; but mother chased her away, saying she singing as she went; and ye long, low room was had doubtlesse harboured in some of ye low houses sweet with flowers. Sayd I, Rose, to be misin Oxford, and mighte bring us ye ue. Coulde tress of this pretty cottage, 't were hardlie amisse have cried for vexation ; she had promised to tell to marry a as olde as Master Roger.” me ye colour of my husband's eyes; but mother" Olde !" quoth she, “deare Moll, you must not says she believes I shall never have one, I am soe deeme him olde ; why, he is but forty-two ; and sillie. Father gave me a gold piece. Dear am not I twenty-three?" She lookt soe earneste mother is chafed, methinks, touching this debt of and hurte, that I coulde not but falle a laughing. five hundred pounds, which father says he knows not how to pay. Indeed, he sayd, overnighte, his 8th.—Mother gone to Sandford. She hopes whole personal estate amounts to but five hundred to get uncle John to lend father this money. pounds, his timber and wood to four hundred more, Father says she may try. T is harde to disor thereabouts ; and the tithes and messuages of courage her with an ironicalle smile, when she is Whateley are no great matter, being mortgaged doing alle she can, and more than manie women for about as much moore, and he hath lent sights woulde, to help father in his difficultie; but suche, of money to them that won't pay, so 't is hard to she sayth somewhat bitterlie, is the lot of our sex. be thus prest.
Poor father! 't was good of him She bade father mind that she had brought him to give me this gold piece.
three thousand pounds, and askt what had come
of them. Answered ; helped to fille y® mouths May 2nd.—Cousin Rose married to Master of nine healthy children, and stop ye mouth of an Roger Agnew. Present, father, mother, and easie husband ; soe, with a kiss, made it up. I brother of Rose. Father, mother, Dick, Bob, have ye keys, and am left mistresse of alle, to my Harry, and I ; Squire Paice and his daughter greate contentment; but ye children clamour for Audrey ; an olde aunt of Master Roger's, and sweetmeats, and father sayth,“ remember, Moll, one of his cousins, a stiffe-backed man with large discretion is yo better part of valour.” eares, and such a long nose! Cousin Rose looked After mother had left, went into yo paddock, to bewtifulle-pitie so faire a girl s marry so olde feed ye colts with bread ; and while they were a man—'t is thoughte he wants not manie years putting their noses into Robin's pockets, Dick of fifty.
brought out y® two ponies, and set me on one of
them, and we had a mad scamper through yo 7th.—New misfortunes in yo poultrie yarde. meadows and down ye lanes ; I leading. Just at Poor mother's loyalty cannot stand y demands ye turne of Holford's close, came shorte upon a for her best chickens, ducklings, &c., for ye use gentleman walking under yo hedge, clad in a of his M''s officers since the king hath beene in sober, genteel suit, and of most beautifulle counOxford. She accuseth my father of having beene tenance, with hair like a woman's, of a lovely wonne over by a few faire speeches to be more of pale brown, long and silky, falling over his shoula royalist than his natural temper inclineth him ders. I nearlie went over him, for Clover's hard to ; which, of course, he will not admit.
forehead knocked agaynst his chest; but he stoode
it like a rock ; and lookinge firste at me and then 8th.—Whole day taken up on a visit to Rose, at Dick, he smiled and spoke to my brother, who now a week married, and growne quite matronlie seemed to know him, and turned about and walked already. We reached Sheepscote about an hour by us, sometimes stroaking Clover's shaggy mane. before noone. A long, broade, strait walke of I felte a little ashamed ; for Dick had sett me on green turf, planted with hollyoaks, sunflowers, yo poney just as I was, my gown somewhat too
and some earlier flowers alreadie in bloom, shorte for riding : however, I drewe up my feet led up to ye rusticall porch of a truly farm-like and let Clover nibble a little grasse, and then got house, with low gable roofs, a long lattice win-rounde to y neare side, our new companion stille dow on either side y® doore, and three casements | between us. He offered me some wild flowers, CCLXVIII.
VOL. XXI. 1
and askt me theire names ; and when I tolde greate pleasure, when you came. After we have them, he sayd I knew more than he did, though eaten y junkett, he shall beginne it again." he accounted himselfe a prettie fayre botapiste : “ By no means,” said I, “ sor I love talking more and we went on thus, talking of ye herbs and than reading.” However, it was not soe to be, simples in ye hedges, and I sayd how prettie for Rose woulde not be soyled; and as it woulde some of theire names were, and that methought, not have been good manners to decline yo hearthough Adam had named alle ye animals in Para-inge in presence of yo poet, I was constrayned to dise, perhaps Eve had named alle ye flowers. He suppresse a secret yawne and feign attention, lookt earnestlie at me, on this, and muttered though, truth to say, it soone wandered ; and, “prettie.” Then Dick askt of him news from during ye last halfe hour, I sat in a compleat London, and he spoke, methought, reservedlie ; dreame, tho' not unpleasant one. Roger having ever and anon turning his bright, thoughtfulle made an end, 't was diverting to heare him comeyes on me. At length, we parted at ye turn of mending yo piece unto y author, who as gravely y lane.
accepted it; yet, with nothing fullesome about I askt Dick who he was, and he told me he the one, or misproud about y other. Indeed, was one Mr. John Milton, ye party to whom there was a sedate sweetnesse in yo poet's wordes father owed five hundred pounds. He was y as well as lookes ; and shortlie, waiving ye dissonne of a Buckinghamshire gentleman, he added, cussion of his owne composures, he beganne to well connected, and very scholarlike, but affected talke of those of other men, as Shakspeare, Spentowards ye Parliament. His grandsire, a zealous ser, Cowley, Ben Jonson, and of Tasso, and Taspapiste, formerly lived in Oxon, and disinherited so's friend the Marquis of Villa, whome, it apy father of this gentleman for abjuring y Romish peared, Mr. Milton had knowledge of in Italy. faith.
Then he askt me, woulde I not willingly have seene When I found how faire a gentleman was y country of Romeo and Juliet, and prest to father's creditor, I became ye more interested in know whether I loved poetry ; but finding me deare mother's successe.
loath to tell, sayd be doubted not I preferred
romances, and that he had read manie, and loved May 13th.--Dick hegan to harpe on another them dearly too. I sayd, I loved Shakspeare's ride to Sheepscote this morning, and persuaded plays better than Sidney's Arcadia; on which he father to let him have yo bay mare, soe he and I cried “righte," and drew nearer
to me, and started at aboute ten o’ the clock. Arrived at woulde have talked at greater length; but, knowMaster Agnew's doore, found it open, no one in ing from Rose how learned he was, I feared to parlour or studdy ; soe Dick tooke ye horses shew him I was a sillie foole; soe, like a sillie rounde, and then we went straite thro' ye house, foole, held my tongue. into ye garden behind, which is on a rising Dinner; eggs, bacon, roast ribs of lamb, ground, with pleached alleys and turfen walks, spinach, potatoes, savory pie, a Brentford pudding, and a peep of ye church through y® trees. A and cheesecakes. What a pretty housewife Rose lad tolde us his mistress was with the bees, soe is! Roger's plain hospitalitie and scholarlie diswe walked towards ye hives; and, from an arbour course appeared to much advantage. He askt of hard by, hearde a murmur, tho' not of bees, issu- news from Paris; and Mr. Milton spoke much ing. In this rusticall bowre, found Roger Agnew of ye Swedish ambassadour, Dutch by birth ; a reading to Rose and to Mr. Milton. Thereupon man renowned for his learning, magnanimity, and ensued manie cheerfulle salutations, and Rose pro- misfortunes, of whome he had seene much. He posed returning to ye house, but Master Agnew told Rose and me how this Mister Van der Groote sayd it was pleasanter in the bowre, where was had been unjustlie caste into prison by his counroom for alle ; soe then Rose offered to take me trymen ; and how his good wife had shared his to her chamber to lay aside my hoode, and prom- captivitie and had tried to get his sentence reised to send a junkett into yo arbour ; whereon versed ; failing which, she contrived his escape in Mr. Agnew smiled at Mr. Milton, and sayd some- a big chest which she pretended to be full of heavie what of “ neat-handed Phillis."
olde bookes. Mr. Milton concluded with the exAs we went alonge, I tolde Rose I had seene clamation, “ Indeede, there never was such a woher guest once before, and thought him a comely man ;” on which, deare Roger, whome I beginne pleasant gentleman. She langht, and sayd, to love, quoth, “Oh yes, there are manie such“ Pleasart ? why, he is one of y® greatest schol- we have two at table now.” Whereat, Mr. Milars of our time, and knows more languages than ton smiled. you or I ever hearde of.” I made answer, At leave-taking pressed Mr. Agnew and Rose “ That may be, and yet might not ensure his to come and see us soone; and Dick askt Mr. being pleasant, but rather y® contrary, for I can- Milton to see ye bowling greene. not reade Greeke and Latin, Rose, like you.” Ride home, delightfulle. Quoth Rose, “ But you can reade English, and he hath writ some of ye loveliest English verses you 14th.—Thought, when I woke this morning, I ever hearde, and hath brought us a new compos- had been dreaminge of St Paul let down yo wall ure this morning, which, Roger, being his olde in a basket; but founde, on more closely examcollege friend, was discussing with him, to my ining the matter, 't was Grotius carried down ye
ladder in a chest; and methought I was his wife, and Mr. Milton sayd, “ Hearken!” and then, leaninge from ye window above, and crying to ye " There is some one being slainc in ye woode, I souldiers, “ Have a care, have a care!” 'Tis must goe to rescue him ;" and soe, drewe his certayn I shoulde have betraied him by an over- sword and ran off. Meanwhile, y cries continued, anxietie.
but I did not seeme to mind them much ; and, Resolved to give father a Sheepscote dinner, looking stedfastlie downe into ye cleare water, but Margery affirmed ye haunch woulde no longer coulde see to an immeasurable depth, and beheld, keepe, so was forced to have it dressed, though oh, rare !-girls sitting on glistening rocks, far meaning to have kept it for companie. Little downe beneathe, combing and braiding their Kate, who had been out alle y morning, came in brighte hair, and talking and laughing, onlie I with her lap full of butter-burs, the which I was coulde not heare aboute what. And theire kirtles glad to see, as mother esteemes them a sovereign were like spun glass, and theire bracelets, coral and remedie 'gainst y® plague, which is like to be rife pearl, and I thought it the fairest sight that eyes in Oxford this summer, the citie being so over- coulde see. But, alle at once, the cries in ye crowded on account of his M'. While laying wood affrighted them, for they started, looked them out on ye stille-room floor, in bursts Robin to upwards and alle aboute, and began swimming say Mr. Agnew and Mr. Milton were with father thro' ye cleare water so fast, that it became at y® bowling greene, and woulde dine here. Soe troubled and thick, and I coulde see them noe was glad Margery had put down yo haunch. more. Then I was aware that y voices in the ’T was past one o' the clock, however, before it wood were of Dick and Harry, calling for me ; coulde be sett on table; and I had just run up and I soughte to answer, “ Here!" but my tongue to pin on my carnation knots, when I hearde them was heavie. Then I commenced running toalle come in discoursing merrilie.
wards them, through ever so manie greene paths, At dinner Mr. Milton askt Robin of his stud-in ye wood; but stille, we coulde never meet ; dies; and I was payne for ye deare boy, know- and I began to see grinning faces, neither of man ing him to be better affected to his out-doore recrea- nor beaste, peeping at me through ye trees; and tions than to his booke ; but he answered boldlie he one and another of them called me by name, and was in Ovid, and I lookt in Mr. Milton's face in greate feare and paine I awoke! to guesse was that goode scholarship or no ; but he
Strange things are dreames.
Dear turned it towards my father, and sayd he was mother thinks much of them, and sayth they oft trying an experiment on two young nephews of portend coming events. My father holdeth ye his owne, whether ye reading those authors that opinion that they are rather made up of what hath treate of physical subjects mighte not advantage alreadie come to passe ; but surely naught like them more than yo poets; whereat my father this dreame of mine hath in anie part befallen me jested with him, he being himselfe one of the hithertoe! fraternitie he seemed to despise. But he uphelde * What strange fable or masque were they his argumente so bravelie, that father listened in reading that day at Sheepscote? I mind not. earneste silence. Meantime, the cloth being drawne, and I in feare of remaining over long, 20th.—Too much busied of late, to write, was avised to withdrawe myselfe earlie, Robin though much hath happened which I woulde fain following, and begging me to goe downe to y remember. Dined at Shotover yesterday. Met fish-ponds. Afterwards alle y others joyned us, mother, who is coming home in a day or two, but and we sate on ye steps till the sun went down, helde short speech with me aside concerning when, the horses being broughte round, our guests housewifery. The Agnews there, of course ; tooke leave without returning to y house. Fa- alsoe Mr. Milton, whom we have seene continualther walked thoughtfullie home with me, leaning lie, lately; and I know not how it shoulde be, but on my shoulder, and spake little.
he seemeth to like me. Father affects him
much, but mother loveth him not. She hath 15th.—After writing y® above last night, in my seene little of him; perhaps the less the better. chamber, went to bed and had a most heavenlie Ralph Hewlett, as usuall, forward in his rough dreame. Methoughte it was brighte, brighte endeavors to please ; but, though no scholar, I moonlighte, and I was walking with Mr. Milton have yet sense enough to prefer Mr. Milton's dison a terrace-not our terrace, but in some out-course to his. * * I wish I were fonder of landish place; and it had flights and flights of studdy; but, since it cannot be, what need to vex green marble steps, descending, I cannot tell how Some are born of one mind, some of another. farre, with stone figures and vases on everie one. Rose was alwaies for her booke ; and, had Rose We went downe and downe these steps, till we beene no scholar, Mr. Agnew woulde, may be, came to a faire piece of water, still in y® moon- never have given her a second thoughte ; but alle lighte; and then, methoughte, he woulde be taking are not of ye same way of thinking. leave, and sayd much aboute absence and sorrowe, as tho’ we had knowne eache other some space;
* A few lines received from mother's and alle that he sayd was delightfulle to heare." spoilt boy,” as father hath called brother Bill, Of a suddain we hearde cries, as of distresse, in a ever since he went a soldiering. Blurred and wood that came quite down to ye water's edge, mis-spelt as they are, she will prize them. Trulie,