The Fourth Day
I Still lay in my Bed, and leisurely survieghed all the noble Images and Figures up and down about my Chamber, during which on a sudden I heard the Musick of Coronets, as if they had been already in Procession. My Page skipped out of the Bed as if he had been at his wits end, and looked more like one dead than living; In what case I then was, is easily immaginable, for, said he, "The rest are already presented to the King"; I knew not what else to do, but weep out-right, and Curss my own sloathfulness; yet I dressed my self, but my Page was ready long before me, and ran out of the Chamber to see how affairs might yet stand. But he soon returned, and brought with him this joyful news, that the time indeed was not yet but only I had over-slept my Breakfast, they being unwilling to waken me because of my Age; But that now it was time for me to go with him to the Fountain where the most part were assembled; With this Consolation my Spirit returned again, wherefore I was soon ready with my Habit, and went after the Page to the Fountain in the aforementioned Garden, where I found that the Lyon instead of his Sword had a pretty large Tablet by him. Now having well viewed it, I found that it was taken out of the ancient Monuments, and placed here for some especial Honour. The Inscription was somewhat worn out with age, and therefore I am minded to set it down here, as it is, and give every one leave to consider it.
This Writing might well be read and understood, and may therefore fitly be here placed, because easier than any of the rest:
Now after we had first washed our selves out of the Fountain, and every Man had taken a draught out of an intirely Golden Cup, we were once more again to follow the Virgin into the Hall, and there put on new Apparel, which was all of Cloth of Gold gloriously set out with Flowers. There was also given to every one another Golden Fleece, which was set about with pretious Stones, and various Workmanship according to the utmost skill of each Artificer. On it hung a weighty Medal of Gold, whereon were figured the Sun and Moon in opposition; but on the other side stood this Poesie,
The light of the Moon shall be as the light of the Sun, and the light of the Sun shall be seven times lighter than at present.
But our former Jewels were layed in a little Casket, and committed to one of the Waiters. After this the Virgin lead us out in our order, where the Musitians waited ready at the door, all apparalled in red Velvet with white Guards. After which a Door (which I never saw open before) to the Royal winding-Stairs was unlocked; There the Virgin led us together with the Musick, up three hundred sixty fiue Stairs, there we saw nothing but what was of extream costly and artificial Workmanship; and still the further we went, the more glorious still was the Furniture, until at length at the top we came under a painted Arch, where the sixty Virgins attended us, all Richly Apparelled; Now as soon as they had bowed to us, and we as well as we could, had returned our reverence, our Musitians were dispatched away, who fain to go down the winding-Stairs again, the Door being shut after them. After this a little Bell was tolled; then came in a beautiful Virgin who brought every one a wreath of Laurel; But our Virgins had Branches given them: Mean while a Curtain was drawn up; Where I saw the King and Queen as they sate there in their Majesty, and had not the yesterday Queen so faithfully warned me, I should have forgotten my self, and have equalled this unspeakable glory to Heaven. For besides that the Room glistered of meer Gold and pretious Stones; the Queen's Robes were moreover so made that I was not able to behold them. And whereas I before esteemed any thing for handsom, here all things so much surpassed the rest, as the Stars in Heaven are elevated. In the mean time the Virgin stept in, and so each of the Virgins taking one of us by the hand, with most profound Reverence presented us to the King: Whereupon the Virgin began thus to speak.
"That to honour your Royal Majesties, (most gratious King and Queen) these Lords here present have adventured hither with peril of Body and Life; your Majesties have reason to rejoyce, especially since the greatest part are qualified for the inlarging of your Majesties Estates and Empire, as you will find the same by a most gratious and particular examination of each of them. Herewith I was desirous thus to have them in Humility presented to your Majesties, with most humble suit to discharge me of this my Commission, and most gratiously to take sufficient information from each of them, concerning both my Actions and Omissions."
Hereupon she laid down her Branch upon the ground. Now it would have been very fitting for one of us to have put in and spoken somewhat on this occasion, but seeing we were all troubled with the falling of the Uvula, at length the old Atlas stept forward and spoke on the King's behalf;
"Their Royal Majesties do most gratiously rejoyce at your arrival, and will that their Royal Grace be assured to all, and every Man: And with thy Administration, gentle Virgin, they are most gratiously satisfied, & accordingly a Royal Reward shall therefore be prouided for thee; yet it is still their intention, that thou shalt this day also continue with them, in as much as they have no reason to mistrust thee."
Hereupon the Virgin humbly took up the Branch again. And so we for this first time were to step aside with our Virgin. This room was square on the front, five times broader than it was long; but towards the West it had a great Arch like a Porch, wherein stood in circle three glorious Royal Thrones, yet the middle-most was somewhat higher than the rest. Now in each Throne sate two persons, in the first sate a very antient King with a gray Beard, yet his Consort was extraordinary fair and young. In the third Throne sate a black King of middle Age, and by him a daintyold Matron, not Crowned, but covered with a Vail. But in the middle sate the two young Persons, who tho' they had likewise Wreaths of Laurel upon their Heads, yet over them hung a large and costly Crown. Now albeit they were not at this time so fair as I had before imagined to my self, yet so it was to be. Behind them on a round Form sat for the most part antient Men, yet none of them (at which I wondered) had any Sword, or other Weapon about him, Neither saw I any other Life-guard, but certain Virgins which were with us the day before, who sate on the sides of the Arch: Here can I not pass in silence how the little Cupid flew to and again there, but for the most part he hovered and played the wanton about the great Crown; sometimes he seated himself in between the two Lovers, somewhat smiling upon them with his Bow. Nay, sometimes he made as if he would shoot one of us; In brief, this Knave was so full of his waggery, that he would not spair even the little Birds which in multitudes flew up and down the Room, but tormented them all he could. The Virgins also had their pastimes with him, but whensoever they could catch him, it was not so easie a matter for him to get from them again. Thus this little Knave made all the sport and mirth. Before the Queen stood a small, but unpressibly curious Altar: wherein lay a Book covered with black Velvet, only a little over-layed with Gold; by this stood a small Taper in an Ivory Candlestick, now although it were very small, yet it burnt continually, and stood in that manner, that had not Cupid, in sport, now and then puffed upon it, we could not have conceived it to be Fire. By this stood a Sphere or Celestial Globe, which of its self turned clearly about. Next this, a small striking-Watch, by that a little Christal Pipe or Syphon-Fountain, out of which perpetually ran a clear blood-red Liquor; and last of all a Scull, or Death's Head; in this was a white Serpent, which was of such a length, that though she crept circle-wise about the rest of it, yet her Taile still remained in one of the Eye-holes, until her Head again entered at the other, so she never stirred from her Scull, unless it happened that Cupid twitched a little at her, for then she slipt in so suddenly, that we all could not choose but marvel at it: Together with this Altar, there were up and down the Room wonderful Images, which moved themselves, as if they had been alive, and had so strange a contrivance, that it would be impossible for me to relate it all: likewise as we were passing out, there began such a marvellous kind of vocal Musick, that I could not certainly tell, whether it were performed by the Virgins who yet stayed behind, or by the Images themselves. Now we being for this time satisfied, went thence with our Virgins, who, the Musitians being already present, led us down the winding Stairs again, but the Door was diligently locked and bolted. As soon as we were come again into the Hall; one of the Virgins began: "I wonder, Sister, that you durst adventure your self amongst so many Persons": "My Sister," replyed our President, "I am fearful of none so much as of this Man," pointing at me; This speech went to the Heart of me: For I well understood that she mocked at my Age, and indeed I was the oldest of them all. Yet she comforted me again with promise. That in case I behaved my self well towards her, she would easily rid me of this burden. Mean time a Collation was again brought in, and every one's Virgin seated by him, who well knew how to shorten the time with handsome discourses: But what their discourses and sports were I dare not blab out of School. But most of the questions were about the Arts, whereby I could lightly gather that both young and old were conversant in the Sciences. But still it run in my thoughts how I might become young again, whereupon I was somewhat the sadder; This the Virgin perceived, and therefore began, "I dare lay anything, if I lye with him to night, he shall be pleasanter in the morning." Hereupon they began to laugh, and albeit I blushed all over, yet I was fain to laugh too at my own ill-luck. Now there was one there that had a mind to return my disgrace again upon the Virgin; whereupon he said, "I hope not only we, but the Virgins too themselves will bear witness in behalf of our Brother, that our Lady President hath promised her self to be his Bedfellow to Night": "I should be well content with it," replyed the Virgin, "if I had no reason to be afraid of these my Sisters, there would be no hold with them should I cause the best and handsomest for my self, against their will." My Sister presently began another, "We find hereby that thy high Office makes thee not proud; wherefore if by thy permission we might by lot part the Lords here present, amongst us, for Bed-fellows, thou shouldst with our good-will have such a Prerogative." We let this pass for a Jeast, and began again to discourse together. But our Virgin could not leave tormenting us, and therefore began again, "My Lords, how if we should Permit Fourtune to decide which of us must lie together to Night?" "Well," said I, "if it may be no otherwise, we cannot refuse such a proffer." Now because it was concluded to make this tryal after Meat, we resolved to sit no longer at Table, so we arose, and each one walked up and down with his Virgin. "Nay," said the Virgin, "It shall not be so yet, but let us see how Fortune will couple us"; upon which we were separated asunder: But now first arose a dispute how the business should be carried, but this was only a premediated device, for the Virgin instantly made the proposal that we should mix our selves together in a Ring, and that she beginning to count from her self, the seventh, was to be content with the folling seventh, whether it were a Virgin, or man; for our parts we were not aware of any craft, and therefore permitted it so to be; but when we thought we had very well mingled our selves, the Virgins nevertheless were so subtil, that each one knew her station before-hand: The Virgin began to reckon, the seventh next her was again a Virgin, the third seventh a Virgin likewise, and this happened so long till (to our amazement) all the Virgins came forth, and none of us was hit; Thus we poor pittiful Wretches remained standing alone, and were moreover forced to suffer our selves to be jeared too, and confess we were very handsomely couzened. In short, who ever had seen us in our order, might sooner have expected the Skye to fall, then that it should never have come to our turn. Herewith our sport was at an end, and we were fain to satisfie our selves with the Virgins Waggery. In the interm, the little wanton Cupid came also in unto us; But because he presented himself on behalf of their Royal Majesties, and delivered us a Health (as from them) out of a golden Cup, and was to call our Virgins to the King, withal declaring he could at this time tarry no longer with them, we could not sufficiently sport our selves with him: So with a due return of our most humble thanks we let him flye forth again. Now because (in the interm) the mirth began to fall into my Consort's Feet, and the Virgins were nothing sorry to see it, they quickly lead up a civil Dance, whom I rather beheld with pleasure, then assisted. For my Mercurialists were so ready with their Postures, as if they had been long of the Trade. After some few Dances our president came in again, and told us how the Artists and Students had offered themselves to their Royal Majesties, for their Honour and Pleasure, before their departure to act a Merry Comedy; and if we thought good to be present at it, and to waite upon their Royal Majesties to the House of the Sun, it would be acceptable to them, and they would most gratiously acknowledge it: Hereupon in the first place we returned our most humble thanks for the Honour vouchsafed us, not only so, but moreover most submissively tendered our small service, which the Virgin related again, and presently brought word to attend their Royal Majesties (in our order) in the Gallery, whither we were soon led, and staid not long there; for the Royal Procession was just ready, yet without any Musick at all. The unknown Queen who was Yesterday with us, went foremost, with a small and costly Coronet, apparrelled in white Sattin, she carried nothing but a small Crucifix which was made of a Pearl, and this very day wrought between the young King and his Bride. After her went the six fore-mentioned Virgins in two ranks, who carried the King's Jewels belonging to the little Altar: next to these came the three Kings. The Bridegroom was in the midst of them in a plain dress, only in black Sattin, after the Italian Mode. He had on a small round black Hat, with a little black pointed Feather, which he courteously put off to us, thereby to signifie his favour towards us. To him we bowed our selves, as also to the first, as we had been before instructed. After the Kings came the three Queens, two whereof were richly habited, only she in the middle went likewise all in black, and Cupid held up her Train; after this intimation was given to us to follow, and after us the Virgins, till at last old Atlas brought up the rear. In such Procession, through many stately Walks, we at length came to the House of the Sun, there next to the King and Queen, upon a richly furnished Scaffold, to behold the fore-ordained Comedy: We indeed though Separated, stood on the right Hand of the Kings, but the Virgins on the left, except those, to whom the Royal Ensignes were committed. To them was allotted a peculiar standing at top of all. But the rest of the attendants were fain to stand below between the columns, and therewith to be content. Now because there are many remarkable Passages in this Comedy, I will not omit in brief to run it over.
First of all came forth a very ancient King, with some Servants; before whose Throne was brought a little Chest, with mention that it was found upon the Water, Now it being opened, there appeared in it a lovely Babe, together with certain Jewels, and a small Letter of Parchment sealed, and superscribed to the King. Which the King therefore presently opened, and having read it, wept; and then declared to his Servants how injuriously the King of the Moores had deprived his Aunt of her Country, and had exstinguished all the Royal Seed even to his Infant, with the Daughter of which Country he had now purposed to have matched his Son. Hereupon he Swore to maintain perpetual enmity with the Moore, and his Allies; and to revenge this upon him; and therewith commanded that the Child should be tenderly nursed, and to make preparation against the Moore. Now this provision and the discipline of the young Lady (who after she was a little grown up was committed to an ancient Tutor) continued all the first Act; with many very fine and laudable sports besides.
In the interlude a Lyon and Griffon were set at one another, to fight, and the Lyon got the victory; which was also a pretty sight.
In the second Act, the Moore, a very black treacherous Fellow, came forth also; who having with vexation understood that his Murder was discovered, and that too a little Lady was craftily stollen from him; began thereupon to consult how by stratagem he might be able to encounter so powerful an adversary, whereof he was at length advised by certain Fugitives who by reason of Famine fled to him: So the young Lady contrary to all mens expectation, fell again into his Hands: Whom, had he not been wonderfully deceived by his own Servants, he had like to have caused to be slain. Thus this Act too was concluded with a marvelous triumph of the Moore.
In the third Act a great Army on the King's party was raised against the Moore, and put under the conduct of an antient valiant Knight, who fell into the Moores Country, till at length he forceably rescued the young Lady out of the Tower, and Apparrelled her a new. After this in a trice they erected a glorious Scaffold, and placed their young Lady upon it: presently came twelve Royal Embassadors, amongst whom the fore-mentioned Knight made a Speech, alledging that the King his most gracious Lord had not only heretofore delivered her from death, and even hitherto caused her to be royally brought up (though she had not behaved her self altogether as became her) But moreover his Royal Majesty had, before others, elected her, to be a Spouse for the young Lord his Son; and most gratiously desired that the said espousals might be really executed in case they would be sworn to his Majesty upon the following Articles. Hereupon out of a Patent he caused certain glorious conditions to be read, which if it were not too long, were well worthy to be here recounted. In brief, the young Lady took an Oath inviolably to observe the same; returning thanks withal in most seemly sort for this so high a Grace. Whereupon they began to sing to the Praise of God, of the King, and the young Lady; and so for this time departed.
For sport, in the mean while, the four Beasts of Daniel, as he saw them in the Vision, and hath at large described them, were brought in, all which had its certain signification.
In the fourth Act the young Lady was again restored to her lost Kingdom, and Crowned, and for a space, in this array, conducted about the place with extraordinary joy: after this many and various Embassadors presented themselves, not only to wish her prosperity, but also to behold her Glory. Yet it was not long that she preserved her Integrity, but soon began again to look wantonly about her, and to wink at the Embassadors and Lords; wherein she truly acted her part to the Life.
These her manners were soon known to the Moore, who would by no means neglect such an opportunity, and because her Steward had not sufficient regard to her, she was easily blinded with great promises, so that she had no good confidence in her King, but privily submitted her self to the intire disposal of the Moore. Hereupon the Moore made haste, and having (by her consent) gotten her into his Hands, he gave her good words so long till all her Kingdom had subjected it self to him: After which in the third Scene of this Act, he caused her to be led forth, and first to be stript stark naked, and then upon a scurvy wooden Scaffold to be bound to a Post, and well scourged, and at last sentenced to Death. This was so woful a Spectacle, that it made the Eyes of many to run over. Hereupon thus naked as she was, she was cast into Prison, there to expect her Death, which was to be procured by Poyson, which yet killed her not, but made her Leprous all over: Thus this Act was for the most part lamentable.
Between, they brought forth Nebuchadnezzar's Image, which was adorn'd with all manner of Arms, on the Head, Breast, Belly, Legs and Feet, and the like; of which too more shall be spoken in the future explication.
In the fifth Act the young King was acquainted with all that had passed between the Moore and his future Spouse, who first interceeded with his Father for her, intreating that she might not be left in that condition; which his Father having agreed to, Embassadors were dispatched to comfort her in her Sickness and Captivity, but yet withal to give her notice of her inconsideratedness. But she would not yet receive them, but consented to be the Moore's Concubine, which was also done, and the young King was acquainted with it.
After this comes a band of Fools, each of which brought with him a Cudgel, where with in a trice they made a great Globe of the World, and soon undid it again. It was fine sportive Phantasie.
In the sixth Act the young King resolved to bid battle to the Moore, which also was done. And albeit the Moore was discomfitted, yet all held the young King too for dead. At length he came to himself again, released his Spouse, and committed her to his Steward and Chaplain.
The first whereof tormented her mightily; at last the leaf turned over, and the Priest was so insolently wicked, that he would needs be above all, until the same was reported to the young King, who hastily dispatched one who broke the Neck of the Priest's mightiness, and adorned the Bride in some measure for the Nuptials.
After the Act a vast artificial Elephant was brought forth. He carried a great Tower with Musitians: which was also well-pleasing to all.
In the last Act the Bride-groom appeared in such pomp as is not well to be believed, and I was amazed how it was brought to pass: The Bride met him in the like Solemnity. Whereupon all the People cried out VIVAT SPONSUS, VIVAT SPONSA . So that by this Comedy they did with all congratulate our King and Queen in the most stately manner: Which (as I well observed) pleased them most extraordinary well.
At length they made some passes about the stage in such Procession, till at last they altogether began thus to Sing.
After this thanks were returned, and the Comedy was finished with joy, and the particular good liking of the Royal Persons wherefore, (the Evening also being already hard by) they departed together in their fore-mentioned order: But we were to attend the Royal Persons up the winding Stairs into the forementioned Hall, where the Tables were already richly furnished, and this was the first time that we were invited to the Kings table. The little Altar was placed in the midst of the Hall, and the six fore-named Royal Ensignes were laid on it. At this time the young King behaved himself very gratiously towards us, but yet he could not be heartily Merry; But howbeit he now and then discoursed a little with us, yet he often sighed, at which the little Cupid only mocked, and playd his waggish tricks. The old King and Queen were very serious, only the Wife of one of the ancient Kings was gay enough, the cause whereof I yet understood not. During this, the Royal Persons took up the first Table, at the second we only Sate. At the third, some of the principal Virgins placed themselves: The rest of the Virgins, and Men, were all fain to wait. This was performed with such state and solemn stilness, that I am affraid to make many words of it. Here I cannot leave untouched how that all the Royal Persons, before Meat, attired themselves in Snow-white glittering Garments, and so sate down to Table. Over the Table hang the fore-mentioned great Golden Crown, the pretious Stones whereof, without any other Light, would have sufficiently illuminated the Hall. However all the Lights were kindled at the small Taper upon the Altar; what the reason was I did not certainly know. But this I took very good notice of, that the young King frequently sent Meat to the white Serpent upon the little Altar, which caused me to muse. Almost all the Prattle at this Banquet was made by little Cupid, who could not leave us (and me indeed especially) untormented. He was perpetually producing some Strange matter. However, there was no considerable Mirth, all went silently on: from whence I, by my self, could imagin some great imminent Peril. For there was no Musick at all heard; but if we were demanded any thing, we were fain to give short round answers, and so let it rest. In short, all things had so strange a face, that the sweat began to trickle down all over my Body; and I am apt to believe that the stout-heartedst Man alive would then have lost his courage. Supper being now almost ended, the young King commanded the Book to be reached him from the little Altar. This he opened, and caused it once again by an old Man to be propounded to us, whether we resolved to abide with him in Prosperity and Adversity; which we having with trembling consented to, he further cause us sadly to be demanded, whether we would give him our Hands on it, which, when we could find no evasion, was fain so to be. Hereupon one after another arose, and with his own Hand writ himself down in this Book, When this also was performed, the little Christal Fountain, together with a very small Christal Glass was brought near, out of which all the Royal Persons one after another Drank, afterwards it was reached to us too, and so forward to all Persons, and this was called, the Draught of Silence. Hereupon all the Royal Persons presented us their Hands, declaring that in case we did not now stick to them, we should now and never more hereafter see them; which verily made our Eyes run over. But our president engaged her self and promised very largely on our behalf, which gave them Satisfaction. Mean time a little Bell was tolled, at which all the Royal Persons waxed so mighty bleak, that we were ready utterly to despair. They quickly put off their white Garments again, and put on intirely black ones; The whole Hall likewise was hung about with black Velvet, the Floor was covered with black Velvet, with which also the Ceiling above (all this being before Prepared) was over-spread. After that the Tables were also removed away, and all had seated themselves round about upon the Form, and we also had put on black habits, in comes our President again, who was before gone out, and brought with her six black Taffeta Scarffs, with which she bound the six Royal Persons Eyes. Now when they could no longer see, there were immediately brought in by the Servants six covered Coffins, and set down in the Hall, also a low black Seat placed in the midst. Finally, there steps in a very cole-black tall Man, who bare in his hand a sharp Ax. Now after that the old King had been first brought to the Seat, his Head was instantly whipt off, and wrapped up in a black Cloth, but the Blood was received into a great golden Goblet, and placed with him in this Coffin that stood by, which being covered, was set aside. Thus it went with the rest also, so that I thought it would at length have come to me too, but it did not; For as soon as the six Royal Persons were Beheaded, the black Man went out again; after whom another followed, who Beheaded him too just before the Door, and brought back his Head together with the Ax, which were laid in a little Chest. This indeed to me seemed a bloody Wedding, but because I could not tell what would yet be the event, I was fain for that time to captivate my understanding until I were further resolved.
For the Virgin too, seeing that some of us were faint-hearted and wept, bid us be content. For, said she to us, "The Life of these standeth now in your hands, and in case you follow me, this Death shall make many alive." Herewith she intimated we should go sleep, & trouble our selves no further on our part, for they should be sure to have their due right; And so she bad us all good night, saying, That she must watch the dead Corps this night: We did so, and were each of us conducted by our Pages into our Lodgings. My Page talked with me of sundry and various matters (which I still very well remember) and gave me cause enough to admire at his understanding: But his intention was to lull me asleep, which at last I well observed, whereupon I made as though I was fast asleep, but no sleep came into my Eyes, and I could not put the Beheaded out of my mind. Now my Lodging was directly over against the great Lake, so that I could well look upon it, the Windows being nigh the Bed. About midnight, as soon as it had struck twelve, on a sudden I espied on the Lake a great Fire, wherefore out of fear I quickly opened the Window to see what would become of it; Then from far I saw seven Ships making forward, which were all stuck full of Lights. Above on the top of each of them hovered a Flame, that passed to and fro, and sometimes descended quite down, so that I could lightly judge that it must needs be the Spirits of the Beheaded. Now these Ships gently approched to Land, and each of them had no more than one Mariner. As soon as they were now gotten to Shore, I presently espied our Virgin with a Torch going towards the Ships, after whom the six covered Coffins, together with the little Chest, were carried; and each of them privily laid in a Ship. Wherefore I awaked my Page too, who hugely thanked me, for having run much up and down all the day, he might quite have overslept this, tho' he well knew it. Now as soon as the Coffins were laid in the Ships, all the Lights were extinguished, and the six Flames passed back together over the Lake, so that there was no more but one Light in each Ship for a Watch. There were also some hundreds of Watchmen who had encamped themselves on the Shore, and sent the Virgin back again into the Castle, who carefully bolted all up again; so that I could well judge that there was nothing more to be done this night, but that we must expect the day; so we again betook our selves to rest. And I only of all my Company had a Chamber towards the Lake, and saw this, so that now I was also extream weary, and so fell asleep in my manifold Speculations.
 This whole inscription
can be translated as: