THE SIXTH STAGE.
Discourse with Old Honest - character and history of Mr. Fearing - Mr. Self-will and some professors - Gaius' house - conversation - the supper - Old Honest and Great-Heart's riddles and discourse - Giant Slay-good killed - Mr. Feeble-mind's history - Mr. Ready-to-halt - Vanity Fair - Mr. Mnason's house - cheering entertainment and converse - a Monster
Discourse with Old Honest
ow I saw that they went to the ascent that was a little way off, cast up to be a prospect for pilgrims (that was the place from whence CHRISTIAN had the first sight of FAITHFUL, his brother). Wherefore here they sat down, and rested; they also here did eat and drink and make merry, for that they had gotten deliverance from this so dangerous an enemy. As they sat thus and did eat, CHRISTIANA asked the guide, "If he had caught no hurt in the battle?" Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "No, save a little on my flesh; yet that also shall be so far from being to my determent, that it is, at present, a proof of my love to my Master and you, and shall be a means, by grace, to increase my reward at last."
"But were you not afraid, good sir, when you saw him come out with his club?"
"It is my duty," said he, "to distrust mine own ability, that I may have reliance on him that is stronger than all."
"But what did you think when he fetched you down to the ground at the first blow?"
"Why, I thought," quoth he, "that so my Master himself was served; and yet he it was that conquered at the last."
Matt. When you all have thought what you please, I think God has been wonderful good unto us, both in bringing us out of this valley, and in delivering us out of the hand of this enemy; for my part I see no reason why we should distrust our God any more, since he has now, and in such a place as this, given us such testimony of his love as this.
They then got up and went forward. Now a little before them stood an oak; and under it, when they came to it, they found an old pilgrim, fast asleep; they knew that he was a pilgrim by his clothes, and his staff, and his girdle.
So the guide, Mr. GREAT-HEART, awakened him; and the old gentleman as he lift up his eyes, cried out, "What's the matter? who are you? and what is your business here?"
Great-heart. "Come, man, be not so hot; here are none but friends." Yet the old man gets up and stands upon his guard, and will know of them what they were. Then said the guide, "My name is GREAT-HEART; I am the guide of these pilgrims, which are going to the celestial country."
Honest. Then said Mr. HONEST, "I cry you mercy; I feared that you had been of the company of those that some time ago did rob LITTLE-FAITH of his money; but now I look better about me, I perceive you are honester people."
Great-heart. Why, what would or could you have done, to have helped yourself, if we indeed had been of that company?
Honest. Done! why I would have fought as long as breath had been in me; and had I so done, I am sure you could never have given me the worst on't; for a Christian can never be overcome, unless he shall yield of himself.
Great-heart. "Well said, father HONEST," quoth the guide; "for by this I know thou art a cock of the right kind, for thou hast said the truth."
Honest. And by this also I know that thou knowest what true pilgrimage is; for all others do think that we are the soonest overcome of any.
Great-heart. Well, now we are so happily met, pray let me crave your name and the name of the place you came from?
Honest. My name I cannot; but I came from the town of Stupidity: it lies about four degrees beyond the city of Destruction.
Great-heart. Oh, are you that countryman, then? I deem I have half a guess of you; your name is OLD HONESTY, is it not?
Honest. So the old gentleman blushed, and said, "Not Honesty in the abstract, but HONEST is my name; and I wish that my nature shall agree to what I am called. But, sir," said the old gentleman, "how could you guess that I am such a man, since I came from such a place?"
Great-heart. I had heard of you before by my Master; for he knows all things that are done on the earth. But I have often wondered that any should come from your place; for your town is worse than is the City of Destruction itself.
Honest. Yes, we lie more off from the sun, and so are more cold and senseless; but were a man in a mountain of ice, yet if the Sun of Righteousness will arise upon him, his frozen heart shall feel a thaw; and thus it hath been with me.
Great-heart. I believe it, father HONEST, I believe it; for I know the thing is true.
Then the old gentleman saluted all the pilgrims with a holy kiss of charity, and asked them of their names, and how they had fared since they set out on their pilgrimage.
Chris. Then said CHRISTIANA, "My name I suppose you have heard of; good CHRISTIAN was my husband, and these four were his children." But can you think how the old gentleman was taken when she told him who she was! He skipped; he smiled; and blessed them with a thousand good wishes, saying:
Honest. "I have heard much of your husband, and of his travels and wars which he underwent in his days. Be it spoken to your comfort, the name of your husband rings all over these parts of the world: his faith, his courage, his enduring, and his sincerity under all, has made his name famous." Then he turned to the boys, and asked them of their names; which they told him: and then he said unto them, "MATTHEW, be thou like Matthew the publican--not in vice, but in virtue. SAMUEL," said he, "be thou like Samuel the prophet, a man of faith and prayer. JOSEPH," said he, "be thou like Joseph in Potiphar's house, chaste, and one that flies from temptation. And JAMES, be thou like James the Just, and like James the brother of our Lord."
Then they told him of MERCY; and how she had left her town and her kindred, to come along with CHRISTIANA and with her sons. At that the old honest man said, "MERCY is thy name? by mercy shalt thou be sustained, and carried through all those difficulties that shall assault thee in thy way; till thou shall come thither, where thou shalt look the fountain of mercy in the face with comfort."
All this while the guide, Mr. GREAT-HEART, was very much pleased, and smiled upon his companion.
The Story of Mr. Fearing
ow as they walked along together, the guide asked the old gentleman, if he did not know one Mr. FEARING that came on pilgrimage out of his parts.
Honest. "Yes, very well," said he; "he was a man that had the root of the matter in him, but he was one of the most troublesome pilgrims that I ever met with in all my days."
Great-heart. I perceive you knew him; for you have given a very right character of him.
Honest. Knew him! I was a great companion of his, I was with him when he first began to think of what would come upon us hereafter.
Great-heart. I was his guide from my master's house to the gates of the Celestial City.
Honest. Then you knew him to be a troublesome one.
Great-heart. I did so; but I could very well bear it: for men of my calling are oftentimes entrusted with the conduct of such as he was.
Honest. Well then, pray let us hear a little of him, and how he managed himself under your conduct.
Great-heart. "Why, he was always afraid that he should come short of whither he had a desire to go. Everything frightened him that he heard anybody speak of, that had but the least appearance of opposition in it. I hear that he lay roaring at the Slough of Despond for above a month together; nor durst he, for all he saw several go over before him, venture, though they, many of them, offered to lend him their hand. He would not go back again neither. The Celestial City, he said, he should die if he came not to it; and yet was dejected at every difficulty, and stumbled at every straw that anybody cast in his way. Well, after he had lain at the Slough of Despond a great while, as I have told you, one sunshiny morning, I do not know how, he ventured, and so got over. But when he was over, he would scarce believe it. He had, I think, a Slough of Despond in his mind, a slough that he carried everywhere with him; or else he could never have been as he was. So he came up to the gate--you know what I mean--that stands at the head of this way; and there also he stood a good while before he would adventure to knock. When the gate was opened, he would give back; and give place to others, and say that he was not worthy. For, for all he got before some to the gate, yet many of them went in before him. There the poor man would stand shaking and shrinking; I dare say it would have pitied one's heart to have seen him; nor would he go back again. At last he took the hammer that hanged on the gate in his hand, and gave a small rap or two; then one opened to him, but he shrunk back as before. He that opened stept out after him, and said, "Thou trembling one, what wantest thou?" With that he fell down to the ground. He that spoke to him wondered to see him so faint. So he said to him, 'Peace be to thee; up, for I have set open the door to thee; come in, for thou art blest.' With that he got up, and went in trembling; and when he was in, he was ashamed to show his face.
"Well, after he had been entertained there awhile, as you know how the manner is, he was bid go on his way, and also told the way he should take. So he came till he came to our house; but as he behaved himself at the gate, so he did at my master the INTERPRETER'S door. He lay thereabout in the cold a good while before he would adventure to call; yet he would not go back. And the nights were long and cold then. Nay, he had a note of necessity in his bosom to my Master, to receive him, and grant him the comfort of his house; and also to allow him a stout and valiant conductor, because he was himself so chicken hearted a man; and yet for all that he was afraid to call at the door. So he lay up and down thereabouts till, poor man, he was almost starved; yea, so great was his dejection, that though he saw several others for knocking get in, yet he was afraid to venture.
"At last, I think I looked out of the window; and perceiving a man to be up and down about the door, I went out to him, and asked what he was; but, poor man, the water stood in his eyes. So I perceived what he wanted. I went therefore in, and told it in the house; and we showed the thing to our Lord. So he sent me out again to entreat him to come in; but I dare say I had hard work to do it. At last he came in; and I will say that for my Lord, he carried it wonderful lovingly to him. There were but a few good bits at the table; but some of it was laid upon his trencher. Then he presented the note; and my Lord looked thereon, and said his desire should be granted. So when he had been there a good while, he seemed to get some heart, and to be a little more comfortable; for my Master, you must know, is one of very tender bowels, especially to them that are afraid: wherefore he carried it so towards him, as might tend most to his encouragement. Well, when he had had a sight of the things of the place, and was ready to take his journey to go to the city, my Lord, as he did to CHRISTIAN before, gave him a bottle of spirits, and some comfortable things to eat. Thus we set forward, and I went before him; but the man was but of few words, only he would sigh aloud.
"When we were come to where the three fellows were hanged, he said that he doubted that that would be his end also. Only he seemed glad when he saw the cross and the sepulchre. There I confess he desired to stay a little to look; and he seemed for awhile after to be a little cheery. When we came at the Hill Difficulty, he made no stick at that, nor did he much fear the lions; for you must know that his trouble was not about such things as those, his fear was about his acceptance at last.
"I got him in at the house Beautiful I think before he was willing; also when he was in, I brought him acquainted with the damsels that were of the place; but he was ashamed to make himself much for company. He desired much to be alone; yet he always loved good talk, and often would get behind the screen to hear it. He also loved much to see ancient things, and to be pondering them in his mind. He told me afterwards that he loved to be in those two houses from which he came last; to wit, at the Gate, and that of the INTERPPRETER'S, but that he durst not be so bold as to ask.
When we went also from the house Beautiful down the hill, into the Valley of Humiliation, he went down as well as ever I saw a man in my life; for he cared not how mean he was, so he might be happy at last. Yea, I think there was a kind of a sympathy betwixt that valley and him; for I never saw him better in all his pilgrimage than when he was in that valley.
Here he would lie down, embrace the ground, and kiss the very flowers that grew in this valley.
He would now be up every morning by break of day, tracing, and walking to and fro in this valley.
But when he was come to the entrance of the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I thought I should have lost my man; not for that he had any inclination to go back--that he always abhorred,--but he was ready to die for fear. 'Oh, the hobgoblins will have me, the hobgoblins will have me!' cried he; and I could not beat him out on't. He made such a noise and such an outcry here, that, had they but heard him, 't was enough to encourage them to come and fall upon us.
"But this I took very great notice of: that this valley was as quiet while he went through it, as ever I knew it before or since. I suppose those enemies here had now a special check from our Lord; and a command not to meddle until Mr. FEARING was passed over it.
"It would be too tedious to tell you of all, we will therefore only mention a passage or two more. When he was come at Vanity Fair, I thought he would have fought with all the men in the fair; I feared there we should both have been knocked o' the head, so hot was he against their fooleries. Upon the enchanted ground he was also very wakeful. But when he was come at the river where was no bridge, there again he was in a heavy case; now, now, he said, he should be drowned for ever, and so never see that face with comfort that he had come so many miles to behold.
"And here also I took notice of what was very remarkable: the water of that river was lower at this time than ever I saw it in all my life; so he went over at last not much above wetshod. When he was going up to the gate, Mr. GREAT-HEART began to take his leave of him, and to wish him a good reception above; so he said, 'I shall, I shall.' Then parted we asunder, and I saw him no more."
Honest. Then it seems he was well at last.
Great-heart. Yes, yes; I never had a doubt about him. He was a man of a choice spirit, only he was always kept very low; and that made his life so burdensome to himself, and so troublesome to others.
He was, above many, tender of sin; he was so afraid of doing injuries to others, that he often would deny himself of that which was lawful because he would not offend.
Honest. But what should be the reason that such a good man should be all his days so much in the dark?
Great-heart. There are two sorts of reasons for it: one is, the wise God will have it so; some must pipe, and some must weep:
now Mr. FEARING was one that played upon the bass. He and his fellows sound the sackbut, whose notes are more doleful than the notes of other music are. Though, indeed, some say, the bass is the ground of music. And for my part, I care not at all for that profession that begins not in heaviness of mind. The first string that the musician usually touches is the bass, when he intends to put all in tune; God also plays upon this string first when he sets the soul in tune for himself. Only here was the imperfection of Mr. FEARING: he could play upon no other music but this till towards his latter end.
I make bold to talk thus metaphorically for the ripening of the wits of young readers; and because, in the book of the Revelation, the saved are compared to a company of musicians that play upon their trumpets and harps, and sing their songs before the throne.
Honest. He was a very zealous man, as one may see by what relation you have given of him. Difficulties, lions, or Vanity Fair, he feared not at all; 't was only sin, death, and hell that were to him a terror, because he had some doubts about his interest in that celestial country.
Great-heart. You say right: those were the things that were his troublers, and they, as you have well observed, arose from the weakness of his mind thereabout; not from weakness of spirit as to the practical part of a pilgrim's life. I dare believe, that, as the proverb is, he could have bit a firebrand, had it stood in his way; but the things with which he was oppressed, no man ever yet could shake off with ease.
Chris. Then said CHRISTIANA, "This relation of Mr. FEARING has done me good. I thought nobody had been like me; but I see there was some semblance 'twixt this good man and I, only we differed in two things: his troubles were so great they brake out; but mine I kept within. His also lay so hard upon him, they made him that he could not knock at the houses provided for entertainment; but my trouble was always such as made me knock the louder."
Mercy. If I might also speak my heart, I must say, that something of him has also dwelt in me. For I have ever been more afraid of the lake and the loss of a place in paradise, than I have been of the loss of other things. Oh, thought I, may I have the happiness to have a habitation there, 't is enough, though I part with all the world to win it!
Matt. Then said MATTHEW, "Fear was one thing that made me think that I was far from having that within me that accompanies salvation; but if it was so with such a good man as he, why may it not also go well with me?"
James. "No fears, no grace," said JAMES. "Though there is not always grace where there is the fear of hell, yet to be sure, there is no grace where there is no fear of God."
Great-heart. Well said, JAMES, thou hast hit the mark: for the "fear of God is the beginning of wisdom"; and, to be sure, they that want the beginning have neither middle nor end. But we will here conclude our discourse of Mr. FEARING after we have sent after him this farewell:
"Well, Master FEARING, thou didst fear
Thy God; and wast afraid
Of doing anything, while here,
That would have thee betrayed.
And thou didst fear the Lake and Pit--
Would others did so too!
For, as for them that want thy wit,
They do themselves undo."
A False Pilgrim With False Conclusions
ow I saw that they still went on in their talk; for after Mr. GREAT-HEART had made an end with Mr. FEARING, Mr. HONEST began to tell them of another, but his name was Mr. SELF-WILL. "He pretended himself to be a pilgrim," said Mr. Honest; "but I persuade myself he never came in at the gate that stands at the head of the way."
Great-heart. Had you ever any talk with him about it?
Honest. Yes, more than once or twice; but he would always be like himself, self-willed. He neither cared for man, nor argument, nor yet example; what his mind prompted him to, that he could do, and nothing else could he be got to.
Great-heart. Pray, what principles did he hold--for I suppose you can tell?
Honest. He held that a man might follow the vices as well as the virtues of the pilgrims; and that if he did both, he should be certainly saved.
Great-heart. How? If he had said, 't is possible for the best to be guilty of the vices as well as to partake of the virtues of pilgrims, he could not much have been blamed; for, indeed, we are exempted from no vice absolutely, but on condition that we watch and strive. But this I perceive is not the thing. But, if I understand you right, your meaning is that he was of that opinion that it was allowable so to be.
Honest.Aye,aye, so I mean; and so he believed and practised.
Great-heart. But what ground had he for his so saying?
Honest. Why, he said he had the Scripture for his warrant.
Great-heart. Prithee, Mr. HONEST, present us with a few particulars.
Honest. So I will. He said--to have to do with other men's wives had been practised by David, God's beloved; and therefore he could do it. He said--to have more women than one was a thing that Solomon practised; and therefore he could do it. He said--that Sarah and the godly midwives of Egypt lied, and so did saved Rahab; and therefore he could do it. He said--that the disciples went at the bidding of their Master, and took away the owner's ass; and therefore he could do so too. He said--that Jacob got the inheritance of his father in a way of guile and dissimulation; and therefore he could do so too.
Great-heart. High bass, indeed! and you are sure he was of this opinion?
Honest. I have heard him plead for it; bring Scripture for it; bring argument for it, etc.
Great-heart. An opinion that is not fit to be, with any allowance, in the world.
Honest. You must understand me rightly. He did not say that any man might do this; but, that those that had the virtues of those that did such things, might also do the same.
Great-heart. But what more false than such a conclusion? For this is as much as to say, that because good men heretofore have sinned of infirmity, therefore he had allowance to do it of a presumptuous mind. Or if because a child, by the blast of the wind, or for that it stumbled at a stone, fell down and defiled itself in mire--therefore he might wilfully lie down and wallow like a boar therein. Who could have thought that anyone could so far have been blinded by the power of lust? But what is written must be true: "They stumble at the Word, being disobedient; whereunto also they were appointed".
His supposing that such may have the godly man's virtues who addict themselves to their vices, is also a delusion as strong as the other. 'T is just as if the dog should say, "I have, or may have, the qualities of the child; because I lick up its stinking excrements." To eat up the sin of God's people is no sign of one that is possessed with their virtues.
Nor can I believe that one that is of this opinion can at present have faith or love in him. But I know you have made strong objections against him; prithee, what can he say for himself?
Honest. Why, he says, "To do this by way of opinion, seems abundance more honest than to do it, and yet hold contrary to it in opinion."
Great-heart. A very wicked answer; for though to let loose the bridle to lusts while our opinions are against such things is bad: yet to sin, and plead a toleration so to do, is worse. The one stumbles beholders accidentally; the other leads them into the snare.
Honest. There are many of this man's mind that have not this man's mouth; and that makes going on pilgrimage of so little esteem as it is.
Great-heart. You have said the truth; and it is to be lamented. But he that fears the King of Paradise shall come out of them all.
Chris. There are strange opinions in the world; I know one that said, 't was time enough to repent when they come to die.
Great-heart. Such are not over wise. That man would have been loath, might he have had a week to run twenty miles in for his life, to have deferred that journey to the last hour of that week.
Honest. You say right; and yet the generality of them that count themselves pilgrims, do indeed do thus. I am, as you see, an old man, and have been a traveller in this road many a day; and I have taken notice of many things.
I have seen some that have set out as if they would drive all the world afore them; who yet have, in a few days, died as they in the wilderness, and so never got sight of the promised land.
I have seen some that have promised nothing at first setting out to be pilgrims, and that one would have thought could not have lived a day, that have yet proved very good pilgrims.
I have seen some that have run hastily forward, that again have, after a little time, run just as fast back again.
I have seen some who have spoken very well of a pilgrim's life at first, that, after awhile, have spoken as much against it.
I have heard some, when they first set out for paradise, say positively there is such a place; who, when they have been almost there, have come back again, and said there is none.
I have heard some vaunt what they would do in case they should be opposed, that have, even at a false alarm, fled faith, the pilgrim's way, and all.
Now as they were thus in their way, there came one running to meet them, and said, "Gentlemen, and you of the weaker sort, if you love life, shift for yourselves; for the robbers are before you."
Great-heart. Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "They be the three that set upon LITTLE-FAITH heretofore. Well," said he, "we are ready for them"; so they went on their way. Now they looked at every turning when they should have met with the villains; but whether they heard of Mr. GREAT-HEART, or whether they had some other game, they came not up to the pilgrims.
At the House of Gaius
HRISTIANA then wished for an inn for herself and her children, because they were weary. Then said Mr. HONEST, "There is one a little before us, where a very honourable disciple, one GAIUS, dwells".
So they all concluded to turn in thither; and the rather, because the old gentleman gave him so good a report. So when they came to the door, they went in; not knocking, for folks used not to knock at the door of an inn. Then they called for the master of the house; and he came to them. So they asked if they might lie there that night.
Gaius. "Yes, gentlemen, if you be true men; for my house is for none but pilgrims." Then was CHRISTIANA, MERCY, and the boys the more glad; for that the innkeeper was a lover of pilgrims. So they called for rooms: and he showed them one for CHRISTIANA, and her children, and MERCY; and another for Mr. GREAT-HEART and the old gentlemen.
Great-heart. Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "Good GAIUS, what hast thou for supper ? for these pilgrims have come far today, and are weary."
Gaius. "It is late," said GAIUS, "so we cannot conveniently go out to seek food; but such as we have, you shall be welcome to, if that will content."
Great-heart. We will be content with what thou hast in the house; for as much as I have proved thee, thou art never destitute of that which is convenient.
Then he went down and spake to the cook, whose name was TASTE-THAT-WHICH-IS-GOOD, to get ready supper for so many pilgrims. This done, he comes up again, saying, "Come, my good friends, you are welcome to me, and I am glad that I have a house to entertain you; and while supper is making ready, if you please, let us entertain one another with some good discourse." So they all said, "Content."
Gaius. Then said GAIUS, "Whose wife is this aged matron? and whose daughter is this young damsel?"
Great-heart. The woman is the wife of one CHRISTIAN, a pilgrim of former times; and these are his four children. The maid is one of her acquaintance, one that she hath persuaded to come with her on pilgrimage. The boys take all after their father, and covet to tread in his steps. Yea, if they do but see any place where the old pilgrim hath lain, or any print of his foot, it ministers joy to their hearts, and they covet to lie or tread in the same.
Gaius. Then said GAIUS, "Is this CHRISTIAN'S wife, and are these CHRISTIAN'S children? I knew your husband's father; yea, also his father's father. Many have been good of this stock; their ancestors dwelt first at Antioch.
CHRISTIAN'S progenitors (I suppose you have heard your husband talk of them) were very worthy men. They have, above any that I know, showed themselves men of great virtue and courage for the Lord of the pilgrims, his ways, and them that loved him. I have heard of many of your husband's relations that have stood all trials for the sake of the truth. STEPHEN, that was one of the first of the family from whence your husband sprang, was knocked o' the head with stones.
JAMES, another of this generation, was slain with the edge of the sword.
To say nothing of PAUL and PETER, men anciently of the family from whence your husband came. There were-- IGNATIUS, who was cast to the lions; ROMANUS, whose flesh was cut by pieces from his bones; and POLYCARP, that played the man in the fire. There was he that was hanged up in a basket in the sun, for the wasps to eat; and he whom they put into a sack, and cast him into the sea, to be drowned. 'T would be impossible utterly to count up all of that family that have suffered injuries and death for the love of a pilgrim's life. Nor can I but be glad to see that thy husband has left behind him four such boys as these. I hope they will bear up their father's name; and tread in their father's steps; and come to their father's end.
Great-heart. Indeed, sir, they are likely lads: they seem to choose heartily their father's ways.
Gaius. That is it that I said, wherefore CHRISTIAN'S family is like still to spread abroad upon the face of the ground, and yet to be numerous upon the face of the earth. Wherefore let CHRISTIANA look out some damsels for her sons, to whom they may be betrothed; that the name of their father, and the house of his progenitors, may never be forgotten in the world.
Honest. 'T is pity this family should fall and be extinct.
Gaius. "Fall, it cannot, but be diminished it may; but let CHRISTIANA take my advice, and that's the way to uphold it. And, CHRISTIANA," said this innkeeper, "I am glad to see thee and thy friend MERCY together here, a lovely couple. And may I advise, take MERCY into a nearer relation to thee. If she will, let her be given to MATTHEW, thy eldest son. 'T is the way to preserve you a posterity in the earth." So this match was concluded; and in process of time they were married. But more of that hereafter.
GAIUS also proceeded, and said, "I will now speak on the behalf of women, to take away their reproach. For as death and the curse came into the world by a woman, so also did life and health: 'God sent forth his Son made of a woman'.
Yea, to show how much those that came after did abhor the act of their mother, this sex, in the Old Testament, coveted children, if happily this or that woman might be the mother of the Saviour of the world. I will say again, that, when the Saviour was come, women rejoiced in him before either man or angel.
I read not that ever any man did give unto Christ so much as one coin; but the women followed him, and ministered to him of their substance. 'T was a woman that washed his feet with tears; and a woman that anointed his body to the burial. They were women that wept when he was going to the cross; and women that followed him from the cross; and that sat by his sepulchre when he was buried. They were women that were first with him at his resurrection morn; and women that brought tidings first to his disciples that he was risen from the dead.
Women, therefore, are highly favoured; and show by these things that they are sharers with us in the grace of life."
Now the cook sent up to signify that supper was almost ready; and sent one to lay the cloth, the trenchers, and to set the salt and bread in order.
Then said MATTHEW, "The sight of this cloth, and of this forerunner of a supper, begets in me a greater appetite to my food than I had before."
Gaius. So let all ministering doctrines to thee in this life beget in thee a greater desire to sit at the supper of the great King in his Kingdom; for all preaching, books, and ordinances here, are but as the laying of the trenchers, and as setting of salt upon the board, when compared with the feast that our Lord will make for us when we come to his house.
So supper came up, and first a heave shoulder and a wave breast was set on the table before them, to show that they must begin their meal with prayer and praise to God
With the heave shoulder David lifted up his heart to God; and with the wave breast, where his heart lay, with that he used to lean upon his harp when he played. These two dishes were very fresh and good; and they all ate heartily well thereof.
The next they brought up was a bottle of wine, red as blood. So GAIUS said to them, "Drink freely; this is the juice of the true vine, that makes glad the heart of God and man." So they drank and were merry.
The next was a dish of milk well crumbed. But GAIUS said, "Let the boys have that, that they may grow thereby".
Then they brought up in course a dish of butter and honey. Then said GAIUS, "Eat freely of this; for this is good to cheer up and strengthen your judgments and understandings. This was our Lord's dish when he was a child: 'Butter and honey shall he eat; that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good'".
Then they brought them up a dish of apples; and they were very good tasting fruit. Then said MATTHEW, "May we eat apples, since they were such by and with which the serpent beguiled first our mother?"
Then said GAIUS:
"Apples were they with which we were beguiled;
Yet sin, not apples, hath our souls defiled.
Apples forbid, if ate, corrupts the blood;
To eat such, when commanded, does us good.
Drink of his flagons, then, thou Church, his dove,
And eat his apples, who are sick of love."
Then said MATTHEW, "I made the scruple, because I, awhile since, was sick with eating of fruit."
Gaius. Forbidden fruit will make you sick; but not what our Lord has tolerated.
While they were thus talking, they were presented with another dish, and 't was a dish of nuts.
Then said some at the table, "Nuts spoil tender teeth, especially the teeth of children." Which when GAIUS heard, he said:
"Hard texts are nuts (I will not call them cheaters),
Whose shells do keep their kernels from the eaters.
Ope, then, the shells; and you shall have the meat,-
They here are brought for you to crack and eat."
Then were they very merry, and sat at the table a long time, talking of many things. Then said the old gentleman, "My good landlord, while we are cracking your nuts, if you please, do you open this riddle:
"A man there was, though some did count him mad,
The more he cast away, the more he had."
Then they all gave good heed, wondering what good GAIUS would say; so he sat still awhile, and then thus replied:
"He that bestows his goods upon the poor,
Shall have as much again and ten times more."
Then said JOSEPH, "I dare say, sir, I did not think you could have found it out."
"Oh," said GAIUS, "I have been trained up in this way a great while. Nothing teaches like experience; I have learned of my Lord to be kind; and have found by experience that I have gained thereby. 'There is that scatters, yet increases; and there is that withholds more than is meet, but it tends to poverty.' 'There is that makes himself rich, yet hath nothing; there is that makes himself poor, yet hath great riches'".
Then SAMUEL whispered to CHRISTIANA his mother, and said, "Mother, this is a very good man's house; let us stay here a good while, and let my brother MATTHEW be married here to MERCY, before we go any farther."
The which, GAIUS the host overhearing, said, "With a very good will, my child."
So they stayed there more than a month; and MERCY was given to MATTHEW to wife.
While they stayed here, MERCY, as her custom was, would be making coats and garments to give to the poor; by which she brought up a very good report about the pilgrims.
But to return again to our story. After supper, the lads desired a bed; for that they were weary with travelling. Then GAIUS called to show them their chamber; but said MERCY, "I will have them to bed." So she had them to bed, and they slept well, but the rest sat up all night; for GAIUS and they were such suitable company, that they could not tell how to part. Then, after much talk of their Lord, themselves, and their journey, old Mr. HONEST--he that put forth the riddle to GAIUS --began to nod. Then said GREAT-HEART, "What, sir! you begin to be drowsy! come, rub up; now here's a riddle for you."
Then said Mr. HONEST," Let's hear it."
Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART:
"He that will kill must first be overcome;
Who live abroad would, first must die at home."
"Ha," said Mr. HONEST, "it is a hard one: hard to expound, and harder to practise. But come, landlord," said he, "I will, if you please, leave my part to you; do you expound it, and I will hear what you say."
"No," said GAIUS, "'t was put to you, and 't is expected that you should answer it."
Then said the old gentleman:
"He first by grace must conquered be
That sin would mortify;
And who that lives would convince me,
Unto himself must die."
"It is right," said GAIUS; "good doctrine and experience teaches this.
"And now it comes in my mind, I will tell you a story worth the
hearing. There were two men that went on pilgrimage; the one began when he was
young, the other when he was old. The young man had strong corruptions to
grapple with; the old man's were decayed with the decays of nature. The young
man trod his steps as even as did the old one, and was every way as light as he:
who now, or which of them, had their graces shining clearest, since both seemed
to be alike?"
Honest. The young man's, doubtless. For that which heads it against the greatest opposition, gives best demonstration that it is strongest: especially when it also holds pace with that that meets not with half so much; as, to be sure, old age does not.
Besides, I have observed that old men have blessed themselves with this mistake: namely, taking the decays of nature for a gracious conquest over corruptions; and so have been apt to beguile themselves. Indeed, old men that are gracious, are best able to give advice to them that are young; because they have seen most of the emptiness of things. But yet, for an old and a young to set out both together, the young one has the advantage of the fairest discovery of a work of grace within him; though the old man's corruptions are naturally the weakest.
Thus they sat talking till break of day. Now when the family was up, CHRISTIANA bade her son JAMES that he should read a chapter: so he read the 53rd of Isaiah. When he had done, Mr. HONEST asked why it was said, "That the Saviour is said to come out of a dry ground; and also that he had no form nor comeliness in him?"
Great-heart. Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "To the first I answer, Because the Church of the Jews, of which Christ came, had then lost almost all the sap and spirit of religion. To the second I say, The words are spoken in the person of the unbelievers; who, because they want that eye that can see into our Prince's heart, therefore they judge of him by the meanness of his outside.
"Just like those that know not that precious stones are covered over with a homely crust; who, when they have found one, because they know not what they have found, cast it away again, as men do a common stone."
The Slaying of Slay-Good
ell," said GAIUS, "now you are here, and since, as I know, Mr. GREAT-HEART is good at his weapons, if you please, after we have refreshed ourselves, we will walk into the fields, to see if we can do any good. About a mile from hence there is one SLAY-GOOD, a giant that doth much annoy the King's highway in these parts. And I know whereabout his haunt is: he is master of a number of thieves; 'twould be well if we could clear these parts of him."
So they consented and went: Mr. GREAT-HEART with his sword, helmet, and shield; and the rest with spears and staves.
When they came to the place where he was, they found him with one FEEBLE-MIND in his hands, whom his servants had brought unto him, having taken him in the way. Now the giant was filling of him, with a purpose, after that, to pick his bones; for he was of the nature of a flesh eater.
Well, so soon as he saw Mr. GREAT-HEART and his friends at the mouth of his cave with their weapons, he demanded what they wanted.
Great-heart. "We want thee; for we are come to revenge the quarrel of the many that thou hast slain of the pilgrims, when thou hast dragged them out of the King's highway; wherefore, come out of thy cave!" So he armed himself and came out; and to a battle they went, and fought for above an hour, and then stood still to take wind.
Slay-good. Then said the giant, "Why are you here on my ground?"
Great-heart. "To revenge the blood of pilgrims; as I also told thee before." So they went to it again; and the giant made Mr. GREAT-HEART give back: but he came up again; and in the greatness of his mind, he let fly with such stoutness at the giant's head and sides, that he made him let his weapon fall out of his hand. So he smote him and slew him, and cut off his head, and brought it away to the inn.
He also took FEEBLE-MIND the pilgrim, and brought him with him to his lodgings. When they were come home, they showed his head to the family; and then set it up as they had done others before, for a terror to those that should attempt to do as he hereafter.
hen they asked Mr. FEEBLE-MIND how he fell into his hands.
Feeble-mind. Then said the poor man, "I am a sickly man, as you see; and because death did usually, once a day, knock at my door, I thought I should never be well at home. So I betook myself to a pilgrim's life; and have travelled hither from the town of Uncertain, where I and my father were born. I am a man of no strength at all, of body, nor yet of mind; but would, if I could, though I can but crawl, spend my life in the pilgrims' way. When I came at the gate that is at the head of the way, the Lord of that place did entertain me freely. Neither objected he against my weakly looks, nor against my feeble mind; but gave me such things that were necessary for my journey, and bade me hope to the end. When I came to the house of the INTERPRETER, I received much kindness there; and because the hill Difficulty was judged too hard for me, I was carried up that by one of his servants. Indeed, I have found much relief from pilgrims; though none was willing to go so softly as I am forced to do. Yet still, as they came on, they bade me be of good cheer; and said, that it was the will of their Lord that comfort should be given to the feeble-minded, and so went on their own pace.
When I was come up to Assault Lane, then this giant met with me, and bade me prepare for an encounter; but alas, feeble one that I was, I had more need of a cordial. So he came up and took me. I conceived he should not kill me; also when he had got me into his den, since I went not with him willingly, I believed I should come out alive again. For I have heard, that not any pilgrim that is taken captive by violent hands, if he keeps heart whole towards his Master, is, by the laws of Providence, to die by the hand of the enemy. Robbed, I looked to be, and robbed to be sure I am; but I am, as you see, escaped with life, for the which I thank my King as author, and you as the means. Other brunts I also look for: but this I have resolved on--to wit, to run when I can; to go when I cannot run; and to creep when I cannot go. As to the main, I thank him that loves me, I am fixed: my way is before me; my mind is beyond the river that has no bridge; though I am, as you see, but of a feeble mind."
Honest. Then said old Mr. HONEST, "Have you not, some time ago, been acquainted with one Mr. FEARING, a pilgrim?"
Feeble-mind. Acquainted with him! yes. He came from the town of Stupidity, which lies four degrees to the northward of the city of Destruction, and as many off of where I was born. Yet we were well acquainted: for indeed he was mine uncle, my father's brother; he and I have been much of a temper; he was a little shorter than I, but yet we were much of a complexion.
Honest. I perceive you know him, and I am apt to believe also that you were related one to another: for you have his whitely look; a cast like his with your eye; and your speech is much alike.
Feeble-mind. Most have said so that have known us both; and besides, what I have read in him, I have for the most part found in myself.
Gaius. "Come, sir," said good GAIUS, "be of good cheer! --you are welcome to me and to my house; and what thou hast a mind to, call for freely; and what thou wouldst have my servants do for thee, they will do it with a ready mind."
Feeble-mind. Then said Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, "This is unexpected favour, and as the sun shining out of a very dark cloud. Did giant SLAY-GOOD intend me this favour when he stopped me, and resolved to let me go no farther? Did he intend that after he had rifled my pockets, I should go to GAIUS mine host? Yet so it is."
Now, just as Mr. FEEBLE-MIND and GAIUS were thus in talk, there comes one running, and called at the door; and told, that about a mile and a half off there was one Mr. NOT-RIGHT, a pilgrim, struck dead upon the place where he was with a thunderbolt.
Feeble-mind. "Alas," said Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, "is he slain! he overtook me some days before I came so far as hither, and would be my company keeper. He also was with me when SLAY-GOOD the giant took me; but he was nimble of his heels, and escaped. But it seems he escaped to die; and I was taken to live.
"What, one would think, doth seek to slay outright,
Oft times delivers from the saddest plight;
That very Providence, whose face is death,
Doth oft times to the lowly life bequeath.
I taken was, he did escape and flee;
Hands crossed give death to him, and life to me."
A Feast and a Farewell
ow about this time MATTHEW and MERCY were married; also GAIUS gave his daughter PHOEBE to JAMES, MATTHEW'S brother, to wife: after which time, they yet stayed above ten days at GAIUS's house, spending their time and the seasons like as pilgrims used to do.
When they were to depart, GAIUS made them a feast; and they did eat and drink, and were merry. Now the hour was come that they must be gone; wherefore Mr. GREAT-HEART called for a reckoning. But GAIUS told him that at his house it was not the custom for pilgrims to pay for their entertainment. He boarded them by the year; but looked for his pay from the good Samaritan, who had promised him, at his return, whatsoever charge he was at with them faithfully to repay him.
Then said Mr. GREAT-HEART to him:
Great-heart. Beloved, "thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren and to strangers; which have borne witness of thy charity before the Church: whom if thou (yet) bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well".
Then GAIUS took his leave of them all: and of his children; and particularly of Mr. FEEBLE-MIND. He also gave him something to drink by the way.
Now Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, when they were going out of the door, made as if he intended to linger. The which, when Mr. GREAT-HEART espied, he said, "Come, Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, pray do you go along with us; I will be your conductor, and you shall fare as the rest."
Feeble-mind. Alas! I want a suitable companion; you are all lusty and strong, but I, as you see, am weak. I choose therefore, rather to come behind; lest, by reason of my many infirmities, I should be both a burden to myself and to you. I am, as I said, a man of a weak and feeble mind; and shall be offended and made weak at that which others can bear. I shall like no laughing. I shall like no gay attire; I shall like no unprofitable questions. Nay, I am so weak a man, as to be offended with that which others have a liberty to do. I do not yet know all the truth; I am a very ignorant Christian man; sometimes, if I hear some rejoice in the Lord, it troubles me because I cannot do so too. It is with me, as it is with a weak man among the strong; or as with a sick man among the healthy; or as a lamp despised. (" He that is ready to slip with his feet, is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease."
So that I know not what to do.
Great-heart. "But, brother," said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "I have it in commission to comfort the feeble-minded and to support the weak. You must needs go along with us: we will wait for you; we will lend you our help; we will deny ourselves of some things, opinionative and practical, for your sake; we will not enter into doubtful disputations before you; we will be made all things to you rather than you shall be left behind".
Now all this while they were at GAIUS's door; and behold, as they were thus in the heat of their discourse, Mr. READY-TO- HALT came by with his crutches in his hand, and he also was going on pilgrimage.
Feeble-mind. Then said Mr. FEEBLE-MIND to him, "Man, how camest thou hither? I was but just now complaining that I had not a suitable companion; but thou art according to my wish. Welcome, welcome, good Mr. READY-TO-HALT; I hope thee and I may be some help."
Ready-to-halt. "I shall be glad of thy company," said the other; "and good Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, rather than we will part, since we are thus happily met, I will lend thee one of my crutches."
Feeble-mind. "Nay," said he, "though I thank thee for thy good-will, I am not inclined to halt before I am lame. Howbeit, I think, when occasion is, it may help me against a dog."
Ready-to-halt. If either myself or my crutches can do thee a pleasure, we are both at thy command, good Mr. FEEBLE-MIND.
Stories of Christian's Pilgrimage
hus, therefore, they went on: Mr. GREAT-HEART and Mr. HONEST went before; CHRISTIANA and her children went next; and Mr. FEEBLE-MIND and Mr. READY-TO-HALT came behind with his crutches. Then said Mr. HONEST:
Honest. Pray, sir, now we are upon the road, tell us some profitable things of some that have gone on pilgrimage before us.
Great-heart. With a good will. I suppose you have heard how CHRISTIAN of old did meet with APOLLYON in the Valley of Humiliation; and also what hard work he had to go through the Valley of the Shadow of Death? Also, I think you cannot but have heard how FAITHFUL was put to it with Madame WANTON; with ADAM the first; with one DISCONTENT; and SHAME --four as deceitful villains as a man can meet with upon the road.
Honest. Yes, I have heard of all this; but, indeed, good FAITHFUL was hardest put to it with SHAME; he was an unwearied one.
Great-heart. Aye, for as the pilgrim well said, "He of all men had the wrong name."
Honest. But pray, sir, where was it that CHRISTIAN and FAITHFUL met TALKATIVE? That same was also a notable one.
Great-heart. He was a confident fool; yet many follow his ways.
Honest. He had like to have beguiled FAITHFUL.
Great-heart. Aye, but CHRISTIAN put him into a way quickly to find him out.
Thus they went on, till they came at the place where EVANGELIST met with CHRISTIAN and FAITHFUL, and prophesied to them of what should befall them at Vanity Fair.
Great-heart. Then said their guide, "Hereabouts did CHRISTIAN and FAITHFUL meet with EVANGELIST, who prophesied to them of what troubles they should meet with at Vanity Fair.
Honest. Say you so? I dare say it was a hard chapter that then he did read unto them!
Great-heart. 'Twas so; but he gave them encouragement withal. But what do we talk of them? they were a couple of lion-like men; they had set their faces like flint. Don't you remember how undaunted they were when they stood before the judge?
Honest. Well, FAITHFUL bravely suffered.
Great-heart. So he did; and as brave things came on't; for HOPEFUL and some others, as the story relates it, were converted by his death.
Honest. Well, but pray go on; for you are well acquainted with things.
Great-heart. Above all that CHRISTIAN met with after he had passed through Vanity Fair, one BY-ENDS was the arch one.
Honest. BY-ENDS! what was he?
Great-heart. A very arch fellow, a downright hypocrite; one that would be religious whichever way the world went; but so cunning, that he would be sure neither to lose nor suffer for it. He had his mode of religion for every fresh occasion; and his wife was as good at it as he. He would turn and change from opinion to opinion; yea, and plead for so doing too. But so far as I could learn, he came to an ill end with his by-ends; nor did I ever hear that any of his children were ever of any esteem with any that truly feared God.
A Stay in Vanity Fair
ow by this time they were come within sight of the town of Vanity, where Vanity Fair is kept. So when they saw that they were so near the town, they consulted with one another how they should pass through the town; and some said one thing, and some another. At last Mr. GREAT-HEART said, "I have, as you may understand, often been a conductor of pilgrims through this town; now I am acquainted with one Mr. MNASON, a Cyprusian by nation, an old disciple, at whose house we may lodge. If you think good," said he, "we will turn in there."
"Content," said old HONEST; "Content," said CHRISTIANA; 'Content," said Mr. FEEBLE-MIND; and so they said all. Now you must think it was eventide by that they got to the outside of the town; but Mr. GREAT-HEART knew the way to the old man's house. So thither they came, and he called at the door; and the old man within knew his tongue so soon as ever he heard it; so he opened, and they all came in. Then said MNASON their host, "How far have ye come today?" So they said, 'From the house of GAIUS our friend." "I promise you," said he, "you have gone a good stitch; you may well be a-weary; sit down." So they sat down.
Great-heart. Then said their guide, "Come, what cheer, sirs? I daresay you are welcome to my friend."
Mnason. "I also," said Mr. MNASON, "do bid you welcome; and whatever you want, do but say, and we will do what we can to get it for you."
Honest. Our great want, awhile since, was harbour and good company; and now I hope we have both.
Mnason. For harbour, you see what it is; but for good company; that will appear in the trial.
Great-heart. "Well," said Mr. GREAT-HEART, "will you have the pilgrims up into their lodging?"
Mnason. "I will," said Mr. MNASON.
So he had them to their respective places; and also showed them a very fair dining room, where they might be and sup together, until time was come to go to rest.
Now when they were set in their places, and were a little cheery after their journey, Mr. HONEST asked his landlord if there were any store of good people in the town.
Mnason. We have a few; for indeed they are but a few when compared with them on the other side.
Honest. But how shall we do to see some of them? for the sight of good men to them that are going on pilgrimage is like to the appearing of the moon and the stars to them that are sailing upon the seas.
Mnason. Then Mr. MNASON stamped with his foot; and his daughter GRACE came up. So he said unto her, "GRACE, go you, tell my friends, Mr. CONTRITE, Mr. HOLY-MAN, Mr. LOVE-SAINT, Mr. DARE-NOT-LIE, and Mr. PENITENT, that I have a friend or two at my house that have a mind this evening to see them."
So GRACE went to call them; and they came: and, after salutation made, they sat down together at the table.
Then said Mr. MNASON, their landlord, "My neighbours, I have, as you see, a company of strangers come to my house; they are pilgrims, they come from afar, and are going to Mount Zion. But who," quoth he, "do you think this is ?" (pointing with his finger to CHRISTIANA.) "It is CHRISTIANA, the wife of CHRISTIAN, that famous pilgrim who, with FAITHFUL his brother, were so shamefully handled in our town." At that they stood amazed, saying, "We little thought to see CHRISTIANA, when GRACE came to call us; wherefore this is a very comfortable surprise." Then they asked her of her welfare; and if these young men were her husband's sons. And when she had told them they were, they said, "The King whom you love and serve make you as your father; and bring you where he is, in peace."
Then Mr. HONEST (when they were all sat down) asked Mr. CONTRITE and the rest, in what posture their town was at present.
Contrite. You may be sure we are full of hurry in fair time. 'Tis hard keeping our hearts and spirits in any good order when we are in a cumbered condition. He that lives in such a place as this, and that has to do with such as we have, has need of an item to caution him to take heed, every moment of the day.
Honest. But how are your neighbours for quietness?
Contrite. They are much more moderate now than formerly. You know how CHRISTIAN and FAITHFUL were used at our town; but of late, I say, they have been far more moderate. I think the blood of FAITHFUL lies with load upon them till now; for since they burned him, they have been ashamed to burn any more. In those days we were afraid to walk the streets; but now we can show our heads. Then the name of a professor was odious; now, especially in some parts of our town (for you know our town is large), religion is counted honourable.
Then said Mr. CONTRITE to them, "Pray, how fares it with you in your pilgrimage? how stands the country affected towards you?"
Honest. It happens to us as it happens to wayfaring men: sometimes our way is clean, sometimes foul; sometimes uphill, sometimes downhill; we are seldom at a certainty. The wind is not always on our backs; nor is everyone a friend that we meet with in the way. We have met with some notable rubs already; and what are yet to come we know not: but, for the most part, we find it true that has been talked of old--" A good man must suffer trouble."
Contrite. You talk of rubs: what rubs have you met withal?
Honest. Nay, ask Mr. GREAT-HEART, our guide; for he can give the best account of that.
Great-heart. We have been beset three or four times already: first, CHRISTIANA and her children were beset with two ruffians, that they feared would have taken away their lives; we were beset with Giant BLOODY-MAN, Giant MAUL, and Giant SLAY-GOOD; indeed, we did rather beset the last than were beset of him. And thus it was: after we had been some time at the house of GAIUS, mine host, and of the whole Church, we were minded upon a time to take our weapons with us, and so go see if we could light upon any of those that were enemies to pilgrims; for we heard that there was a notable one thereabouts. Now GAIUS knew his haunt better than I, because he dwelt thereabout: so we looked and looked, till at last we discerned the mouth of his cave; then we were glad, and plucked up our spirits. So we approached up to his den; and lo, when we came there, he had dragged by mere force into his net this poor man, Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, and was about to bring him to his end. But when he saw us, supposing, as we thought, he had had another prey, he left the poor man in his hole, and came out. So we fell to it full sore, and he lustily laid about him; but in conclusion, he was brought down to the ground, and his head cut off, and set up by the wayside for a terror to such as should after practise such ungodliness. That I tell you the truth, here is the man himself to affirm it, who was as a lamb taken out of the mouth of the lion.
Feeble-mind. Then said Mr. FEEBLE-MIND, "I found this true to my cost and comfort: to my cost, when he threatened to pick my bones every moment; and to my comfort, when I saw Mr. GREAT-HEART and his friends with their weapons approach so near for my deliverance."
Holy-man. Then said Mr. HOLY-MAN, "There are two things that they have need to be possessed with that go on pilgrimage --courage and an unspotted life. If they have not courage, they can never hold on their way; and if their lives be loose, they will make the very name of a pilgrim stink."
Love-saint. Then said Mr. LOVE-SAINT, "I hope this caution is not needful amongst you. But truly there are many that go upon the road that rather declare themselves strangers to pilgrims, than strangers and pilgrims in the earth."
Dare-not-lie. Then said Mr. DARE-NOT-LIE, "'Tis true, they neither have the pilgrim's weed, nor the pilgrim's courage; they go not uprightly, but all awry with their feet,--one shoe goes inward, another outward, and their hosen out behind; there a rag and there a rent, to the disparagement of their Lord."
Penitent. "These things," said Mr. PENITENT, "they ought to be troubled for; nor are the pilgrims like to have that grace put upon them and their pilgrims' progress as they desire, until the way is cleared of such spots and blemishes."
Thus they sat talking and spending the time, until supper was set upon the table; unto which they went and refreshed their weary bodies: so they went to rest. Now they stayed in this fair a great while, at the house of this Mr. MNASON, who, in process of time, gave his daughter GRACE unto SAMUEL, CHRISTIANA'S, son, to wife; and his daughter MARTHA to JOSEPH.
The time, as I said, that they lay here was long (for it was not now as in former times). Wherefore the pilgrims grew acquainted with many of the good people of the town, and did them what service they could. MERCY, as she was wont, laboured much for the poor; wherefore their bellies and backs blessed her, and she was there an ornament to her profession. And to say the truth for GRACE, PHOEBE, and MARTHA, they were all of a very good nature, and did much good in their place. They were also all of them very fruitful; so that CHRISTIAN'S name, as was said before, was like to live in the world.
While they lay here, there came a monster out of the woods, and slew many of the people of the town. It would also carry away their children, and teach them to suck its whelps. Now no man in the town durst so much as face this monster; but all men fled when they heard of the noise of his coming.
The monster was like unto no one beast upon the earth. Its body was like a dragon; and it had seven heads and ten horns.
It made great havoc of children; and yet it was governed by a woman. This monster propounded conditions to men; and such men as loved their lives more than their souls accepted of those conditions. So they came under.
Now this Mr. GREAT-HEART, together with these that came to visit the pilgrims at Mr. MNASON'S house, entered into a covenant to go and engage this beast, if perhaps they might deliver the people of this town from the paws and mouths of this so devouring a serpent.
Then did Mr. GREAT-HEART, Mr. CONTRITE, Mr. HOLYMAN, Mr. DARE-NOT-LIE, and Mr. PENITENT, with their weapons, go forth to meet him. Now the monster at first was very rampant, and looked upon these enemies with great disdain; but they so belaboured him, being sturdy men at arms, that they made him make a retreat; so they came home to Mr. MNASON'S house again.
The monster, you must know, had his certain seasons to come out in, and to make his attempts upon the children of the people of the town; also these seasons did these valiant worthies watch him in, and did still continually assault him: insomuch that, in process of time, he became not only wounded, but lame; also he had not made that havoc of the townsmen's children as formerly he has done. And it is verily believed by some, that this beast will die of his wounds.
This, therefore, made Mr. GREAT-HEART and his fellows of great fame in this town; so that many of the people that wanted their taste of things, yet had a reverent esteem and respect for them. Upon this account, therefore, it was that these pilgrims got not much hurt here. True, there were some of the baser sort, that could see no more than a mole, nor understand more than a beast; these had no reverence for these men, nor took they notice of their valour or adventures.