1680 ca. ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Alexander Gill

John Aubrey, in Brief Lives, 1669-1696; ed. Clark (1898) 1:262-66.



Dr. Gill, the father, was a very ingeniose person, as may appeare by his writings. Notwithstanding he had moodes and humours, as particularly his whipping-fitts:—

As Paedants out of the schoole-boies breeches
doe clawe and curry their owne itches
Hudibras, part ... canto....

This Dr. Gill whipped ... Duncomb, who was not long after a colonel of dragoons at Edgehill-fight, taken pissing against a wall. He had his sword by his side, but the boyes surprized him: somebody had throwen a stone at the windowe; and they seised on the first man they lighted on. I thinke his name was Sir John D. (Sir John Denham told me the storie), and he would have cutt the doctor, but he never went abroad but to church, and then his army went with him. He complained to the councill, but it became ridicule, and so his revenge sank.

Dr. Triplet came to give his master a visit, and he whip't him. The Dr. gott ... Pitcher, of Oxford, who had a strong and a sweet base, to sing this song under the schoole windowes, and gott a good guard to secure him with swords, etc., and he was preserved from the examen of the little myrmidons which issued out to attack him; but he was so frighted that he bes.... himself most fearfully.

In Paul's church-yard in London
There dwells a noble firker;
Take heed you let that pass
Lest you tast of his lash
* * * *
Still doth he cry
Take him up, take him up Sir,
Untrusse with expedition.
Oh the birchen tool
That he winds i' th' school
Frights worse than an inquisition.

If that you chance to passe there,
As doeth the man of blacking;
He insults like a puttock
O'er the prey of the buttock
With a whip't a... sends him packing.
Still doth he cry, etc.

For when this well truss't trounser
Into the school doth enter
With his napkin at his nose
And his orange stuft with cloves
On any .... he'l venter.
Still doth, etc.

A French-man voyd of English
Enquiring for Paul's steeple
His Pardonnez-moy
He counted a toy,
For he whip't him before all people.
Still doth he cry, etc.

A Welsh-man once was whip't there
Untill he did bes.... him
His Cuds-pluttera-nail
Could not prevail
For he whip't the Cambro-Britan.
Still doth he cry, etc.

A captain of the train'd-band
Yclept Cornelius Wallis
He whip't him so sore
Both behind and before
He notch't his .... like tallyes.
Still doth he cry, etc.

For a piece of beef and turnip,
Neglected, with a cabbage,
He took up the pillion
Of his bouncing mayd Jillian
And sowc't her like a baggage.
Still doth he cry, etc.

A porter came in rudely
And disturb'd the humming concord,
He took-up his frock
And he payd his nock
And sawc't him with his owne cord,
Still doth he cry, etc.


GILL UPON GILL, OR
GILL'S .... UNCAS'D, UNSTRIPT, UNBOUND.
"Sir,
Did you me this epistle send,
Which is so vile and lewdly pen'd,
In which no line I can espie
Of sense or true orthographie?
So slovenly it goes,
In verse and prose,
For which I must pull down your hose."

"O good sir!" then cry'd he,
"In private let it be,
And doe not sawce me openly."

"Yes, sir, I'le sawce you openly
Before Sound and the company;
And that none of thee may take heart
Though thou art a batchelour of Art,
Though thou hast payd thy fees
For thy degrees:
Yet I will make thy .... to sneeze.
And now I doe begin
To thresh it on thy skin
For now my hand is in, is in.
First, for the themes which thou me sent
Wherein much nonsense thou didst vent,
And for that barbarous piece of Greek
For which in Gartheus thou didst seeke.
And for thy faults not few,
In tongue Hebrew,
For which a grove of birch is due.
Therfore me not beseech
To pardon now thy breech
For I will be thy ....-leech, ...-leech.

"Next for the offense that thou didst give
When as in Trinity thou didst live,
And hadst thy .... in Wadham College mult
For bidding sing Quicunque vult
And for thy blanketting
And many such a thing
For which thy name in towne doth ring
And none deserves so ill
To heare as bad as Gill—
Thy name it is a proverb still,
Thou vented hast such rascall geer.
Next thou a precher were
For which the French-men all cry Fie!
To heare such pulpitt-ribauldrie.
And sorry were to see
So worthy a degree
So ill bestowed on thee.
But glad I am to say
The Masters made the[e] stay
Till thou in quarto didst them pray.
But now remaines the vilest thing,
The alehouse barking 'gainst the king
And all his brave and nobles peeres;
For which thou ventredst for they eares.
And if thou hadst thy right,
Cutt off they had been quite
And thou hadst been a rogue in sight.

"But thou thou mercy find
Yet I'le not be so kind
But I'le jerke thee behind, behind."