Gargantua and Pantagruel eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 952 pages of information about Gargantua and Pantagruel.

But I employed at least three thousand of them, that is, three hundred pounds English, in marrying—­not young virgins, for they find but too many husbands—­but great old sempiternous trots which had not so much as one tooth in their heads; and that out of the consideration I had that these good old women had very well spent the time of their youth in playing at the close-buttock game to all comers, serving the foremost first, till no man would have any more dealing with them.  And, by G—­, I will have their skin-coat shaken once yet before they die.  By this means, to one I gave a hundred florins, to another six score, to another three hundred, according to that they were infamous, detestable, and abominable.  For, by how much the more horrible and execrable they were, so much the more must I needs have given them, otherwise the devil would not have jummed them.  Presently I went to some great and fat wood-porter, or such like, and did myself make the match.  But, before I did show him the old hags, I made a fair muster to him of the crowns, saying, Good fellow, see what I will give thee if thou wilt but condescend to duffle, dinfredaille, or lecher it one good time.  Then began the poor rogues to gape like old mules, and I caused to be provided for them a banquet, with drink of the best, and store of spiceries, to put the old women in rut and heat of lust.  To be short, they occupied all, like good souls; only, to those that were horribly ugly and ill-favoured, I caused their head to be put within a bag, to hide their face.

Besides all this, I have lost a great deal in suits of law.  And what lawsuits couldst thou have? said I; thou hast neither house nor lands.  My friend, said he, the gentlewomen of this city had found out, by the instigation of the devil of hell, a manner of high-mounted bands and neckerchiefs for women, which did so closely cover their bosoms that men could no more put their hands under.  For they had put the slit behind, and those neckcloths were wholly shut before, whereat the poor sad contemplative lovers were much discontented.  Upon a fair Tuesday I presented a petition to the court, making myself a party against the said gentlewomen, and showing the great interest that I pretended therein, protesting that by the same reason I would cause the codpiece of my breeches to be sewed behind, if the court would not take order for it.  In sum, the gentlewomen put in their defences, showing the grounds they went upon, and constituted their attorney for the prosecuting of the cause.  But I pursued them so vigorously, that by a sentence of the court it was decreed those high neckcloths should be no longer worn if they were not a little cleft and open before; but it cost me a good sum of money.  I had another very filthy and beastly process against the dung-farmer called Master Fifi and his deputies, that they should no more read privily the pipe, puncheon, nor quart of sentences, but in fair full day, and that in the Fodder schools,

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Gargantua and Pantagruel from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.