Digital Renaissance Editions

About this text

  • Title: The Whore of Babylon (Quarto, 1607)
  • Editors: Frances E. Dolan, Anna Pruitt

  • 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
    Editors: Frances E. Dolan, Anna Pruitt
    Not Peer Reviewed

    The Whore of Babylon (Quarto, 1607)

    The Whore of Babylon.
    Oh, they ha snakes sleeky tongues, but hearts more rugged
    Then is the Russian Beare: our Fairie bowres
    720Would turne to Arabian desarts, if such flowers,
    (Mortall as killing Hemlocke) here should grow,
    Which to preuent, Ile haue you vow.
    Aur. We vowe
    By the white balles in bright Titaniaes eies,
    725We their inchantments skorne.
    Titan. It does suffice:
    To bind it sure, Strew all your meades with charmes,
    Which if they doe no good, shall doe no harme.
    Aur. Here comes your new sworne seruant.
    730 Enter Plaine dealing.
    Titan. Now Sirra, where haue you bin?
    Plain. Where haue I bin? I haue bin in the braue st prison---
    Titan. What prison? a braue prison? Can there be a braue prison?
    Plain. All your fine men liue and die there, it's the Knights
    735ward, and therefore mu st needs bee braue: some call it an Ordi-
    narie, but I say tis a prison, for mo st of our gallants that are ser-
    ued euery day with woodcockes there, lie there in a manner vp-
    on Execution: they dare not peepe out of doores for feare of
    740 Titan. What are those Serieants?
    Plain. Doe not you know (mi stre s s e) what Serieants are? a
    nūber of your courtiers are deare in their acquaintāce: why they
    are certaine men-midwiues, that neuer bring people to bed, but
    when they are sore in labour, that no body els can deliuer them.
    745 Titan. Are there such places in our kingdome, as Ordinaries,
    what is the true fa shion of them, whats their order?
    Plain. They are out of all true fa shion: they keep no order.
    Titan. Where about in Fairie land stand they?
    Plain. In your great cittie: and here's the picture of your Or-
    Titan. When Ma ster Painter please we shall haue it: come Sir.
    Plain. Your gallants drink here right wor shipfully, eat mo st
    impudently, dice mo st swearingly, sweare mo st damnably, quar-
    rell mo st desperatly, and put vp mo st cowardly. Suppose I were
    755a young countrey gentleman, and that I were to come in (like an
    a s s e) among 'em, new ca st into the bonds of sattin.