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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 117 pages of information about Citation and Examination of William Shakspeare, Euseby Treen, Joseph Carnaby, and Silas Gough, Clerk.

“Obedient and conducible youth!” said he.  “See there, Master Silas! what hast thou now to say against him?  Who sees farthest?”

“The man from the gallows is the most likely, bating his nightcap and blinker,” said Master Silas, peevishly.  “He hath not outwitted me yet.”

“He seized upon the Anchor of Faith like a martyr,” said Sir Thomas, “and even now his face burns red as elder-wine before the gossips.”

William Shakspeare.

“I await the further orders of your worship from the chair.”

Sir Thomas.

“I return and seat myself.”

And then did Sir Thomas say with great complacency and satisfaction in the ear of Master Silas, —

“What civility, and deference, and sedateness of mind, Silas!”

But Master Silas answered not.


“Must I swear, sirs?”

Sir Thomas.

“Yea, swear; be of good courage.  I protest to thee by my honour and knighthood, no ill shall come unto thee therefrom.  Thou shalt not be circumvented in thy simpleness and inexperience.”

Willy, having taken the Book of Life, did kiss it piously, and did press it unto his breast, saying,

“Tenderest love is the growth of my heart, as the grass is of Alvescote mead.

“May I lose my life or my friends, or my memory, or my reason; may I be viler in my own eyes than those men are—­”

Here he was interrupted, most lovingly, by Sir Thomas, who said unto him, —

“Nay, nay, nay! poor youth! do not tell me so! they are not such very bad men, since thou appealest unto Caesar,—­that is, unto the judgment-seat.”

Now his worship did mean the two witnesses, Joseph and Euseby; and, sooth to say there be many worse.  But William had them not in his eye; his thoughts were elsewhere, as will be evident, for he went on thus:-

“—­if ever I forget or desert thee, or ever cease to worship {193a} and cherish thee, my Hannah!”

Sir Silas.

“The madman! the audacious, desperate, outrageous villain!  Look-ye, sir! where he flung the Holy Gospel!  Behold it on the holly and box boughs in the chimney-place, spreaden all abroad, like a lad about to be whipped!”

Sir Thomas.

“Miscreant knave!  I will send after him forthwith!

“Ho, there! is the caitiff at hand, or running off?”

Jonas Greenfield the butler did budge forward after a while, and say, on being questioned, —

“Surely, that was he!  Was his nag tied to the iron gate at the lodge, Master Silas?”

Sir Silas.

“What should I know about a thief’s nag, Jonas Greenfield?”

“And didst thou let him go, Jonas,—­even thou?” said Sir Thomas.  “What! are none found faithful?”

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