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  • Title: The Honest Whore, Part 2 (Quarto 1, 1630)
  • Editor: Joost Daalder
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-490-5

    Copyright Digital Renaissance Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: Thomas Dekker
    Editor: Joost Daalder
    Not Peer Reviewed

    The Honest Whore, Part 2 (Quarto 1, 1630)

    Enter the Duke, Lodouico, and Orlando: after them Infaelice.
    Carolo, A stolfo, Beraldo, Fontinell.
    Orl. I beseech your Grace (tho your eye be so piercing) as
    vnder a poore blue Coate, to cull out an hone st Father from
    2055an old Seruingman: yet good my Lord discouer not the plot
    to any, but onely this Gentleman that is now to be an
    Actor in our ensuing Comedy.
    Duke. Thou ha st thy wi sh, Orlando, pa s s e vnknowne,
    Sforsa shall onely goe along with thee,
    2060To see that Warrant serued vpon thy Sonne.
    Lod. To attach him vpon fellony, for 2. Pedlers: is't not so?
    Orl. Right, my Noble Knight: those Pedlers were two
    Knaues of mine; he fleec'd the men before, and now he pur-
    poses to flea the Ma ster. He will rob me, his teeth water to
    2065be nibbling at my gold, but this shal hang him by'th gills, till
    I pull him on shore.
    Duke. Away: ply you the bu sine s s e.
    Orl. Thankes to your Grace: but my good Lord, for my
    2070 Duke. You know what I haue said.
    Orl. And remember what I haue sworne: She's more ho-
    ne st, on my soule, then one of the Turkes Wenches, watcht
    by a hundred Eunuches.
    Lod. So she had need, for the Turkes make them whores.
    2075 Orl. He's a Turke that makes any woman a Whore, hee's
    no true Chri stian I'm sure. I commit your Grace.
    Duke. Infaelice.
    Infae . Here, sir.
    Lod. Signior Friscabaldo.
    2080 Orl. Frisking agen, Pacheco?
    Lod. Vds so, Pacheco? wee'll haue some sport with this
    Warrant: 'tis to apprehend all suspected persons in the
    house: Be sides, there's one Bots a Pander, and one Madam
    Hor sleach a Bawde, that haue abus'd my friend, those two
    2085Coneyes will we ferret into the pursenet.
    Orl. Let me alone for dabbing them o'th necke: come,
    Lod. Doe ye heare, Gallants? meet me anon at Matheos.
    Omnes. Enough. Exeunt Lodouico & Orlando.
    2090 Duke. Th' old Fellow sings that note thou did st before,
    Onely his tunes are, that she is no Whore,
    But that she sent his Letters and his gifts,
    Out of a Noble Triumph o're his Lu st,
    To shew she trampled his A s s aults in du st.
    2095 Infae . 'Tis a good hone st seruant, that old man.
    Duke. I doubt no le s s e.
    Infae . And it may be my husband,
    Because when once this woman was vnmaskt,
    He leueld all her thoughts, and made them fit:
    2100Now he'd marre all agen, to try his wit.
    Duke. It may be so too, for to turne a Harlot
    Hone st, it mu st be by strong Antidots,
    'Tis rare, as to see Panthers change their spots.
    And when she's once a Starre (fixed) and shines bright,
    2105Tho 'twere impiety then to dim her light,
    Because we see such Tapers seldome burne.
    Yet 'tis the pride and glory of some men,
    To change her to a blazing Starre agen,
    And it may be, Hipollito does no more.
    2110It cannot be, but y'are acquainted all
    With that same madne s s e of our Sonne-in-law,
    That dotes so on a Curtizan.
    Omnes. Yes, my Lord.
    Car. All the City thinkes he's a Whoremonger.
    2115 A st . Yet I warrant, he'll sweare, no man markes him.
    Ber. 'Tis like so, for when a man goes a wenching, is as if
    he had a strong stincking breath, euery one smells him out,
    yet he feeles it not, tho it be rancker then the sweat of six-
    teene Bearewarders.
    2120 Duke. I doubt then you haue all those stinking breaths,
    You might be all smelt out.
    Car. Troth my Lord, I thinke we are all as you ha bin in
    your youth when you went a Maying, we all loue to heare
    the Cuckoo sing vpon other mens Trees.
    2125 Duke. It's well yet you confe s s e: but Girle, thy bed
    Shall not be parted with a Curtizan--- 'tis strange,
    No frowne of mine, no frowne of the poore Lady,
    (My abused child, his wife) no care of fame,
    Of Honor, Heauen or Hell, no not that name
    2130Of Common Strumpet, can affright, or woo
    Him to abandon her; the Harlot does vndoe him,
    She has bewitched him, robd him of his shape,
    Turnd him into a bea st, his reason's lo st,
    You see he lookes wild, does he not?
    2135 Car. I ha noted new Moones
    In's face, my Lord, all full of change.
    Duke. He's no more life vnto Hipollito,
    Then dead men are to liuing -- neuer sleepes,
    Or if he doe, it's dreames; and in those dreames
    2140His armes worke, -- and then cries--Sweet--what's her
    Name, what's the drabs name?
    A st . In troth, my Lord, I know not,
    I know no drabs, not I.
    Duke. Oh, Bellafront!
    2145And catching her fa st, cries, My Bellafront.
    Car. A drench that's able to kill a Horse, cannot kill this
    disease of Smock-smelling, my Lord, if it haue once eaten
    Duke. Ile try all Phi sicke, and this Med'cine fir st:
    2150I haue directed Warrants strong and peremptory
    (To purge our Citty Millan, and to cure the outward
    Parts, the Suburbes) for the attaching
    Of all those women, who (like gold) want waight,
    Citties (like Ships) should haue no idle fraight.
    2155 Car. No, my Lord, and light wenches are no idle fraight,
    But what's your Graces reach in this?
    Duke. This (Carolo.) If she whom my Son doates on,
    Be in that Ma ster-booke enrold, he'll shame
    Euer t' approach one of such noted name.
    2160 Car. But say she be not?
    Duke. Yet on Harlots heads
    New Lawes shall fall so heauy, and such blowes shall
    Giue to those that haunt them, that Hipollito
    (If not for feare of Law) for loue to her,
    2165If he loue truely, shall her bed forbeare.
    Car. Attach all the light heeles i'th Citty, and clap em vp?
    why, my Lord? you diue into a Well vnsearchable: all the
    Whores within the walls, & without the walls? I would not
    be he should meddle with them for ten such Dukedomes;
    2170the Army that you speake on, is able to fill all the prisons
    within this Citty, and to leaue not a drinking roome in any
    Tauerne be sides.
    Duke. Those onely shall be caught that are of note,
    Harlots in each street flow:
    2175The fi sh being thus i'th net, our selfe will sit,
    And with eye mo st seuere dispose of it. ---come, Girle.
    Car. Araigne the poore Whore.
    A st . Ile not mi s s e that Se s sions.
    Font. Nor I.
    2180 Ber. Nor I,
    Tho I hold vp my hand there my selfe. Exeunt.