Nonfiction > Henry Craik, ed. > English Prose > Vol. III. Seventeenth Century
Henry Craik, ed.  English Prose.  1916.
Vol. III. Seventeenth Century
Temple on his Way to Munster
By Sir William Temple (1628–1699)
From Letters

I NEVER travelled a more savage country, over cruel hills, through many great and thick woods, stony and rapid streams, never hardly in any highway, and very few villages, till I came near Dortmund, a city of the Empire, and within a day’s journey, or something more, of Munster. The night I came to Dortmund was so advanced when I arrived, that the gates were shut, and with all our eloquence, which was as moving as we could, we were not able to prevail to have them opened; they advised us to go to a village about a league distant, where they said we might have lodging. When we came there, we found it all taken up with a troop of Brandenburg horse, so as the poor Spanish Envoy was fain to eat what he could get in a barn, and to sleep upon a heap of straw, and lay my head upon my page instead of a pillow. The best of it was, that he, understanding Dutch, heard one of the Brandenburg soldiers coming into the barn, to examine some of my guards about me and my journey, which, when he was satisfied of, he asked if he had heard nothing upon the way of an English Envoy that was expected; the fellow said, he was upon the way, and might be at Dortmund within a day or two, with which he was satisfied, and I slept as well as I could.
  The next morning I went into Dortmund, and, hearing there that, for five or six leagues round, all was full of Brandenburg troops, I dispatched away a German gentleman I had in my train, with a letter to the bishop of Munster, to let him know the place and condition I was in, and desire he would send me guards immediately, and strong enough to convey me. The night following my messenger returned, and brought me word, that, by eight o’clock the morning after, a Commander of the Bishop’s would come in sight of the town, at the head of twelve hundred horse, and desired I would come and join them so soon as they appeared. I did so, and, after an easy march till four o’clock, I came to a castle of the Bishop’s, where I was received by Lieutenant-General Gorgas, a Scotsman in that service, who omitted nothing of honour or entertainment that could be given me. There was nothing here remarkable, but the most Episcopal way of drinking that could be invented. As soon as we came in the great hall, there stood many flagons ready charged, the General called for wine to drink the King’s health; they brought him a formal bell of silver gilt, that might hold about two quarts or more; he took it empty, pulled out the clapper, and gave it me, who he intended to drink to, then had the bell filled, drank it off to his Majesty’s health, then asked me for the clapper, put it in, turned down the bell, and rung it out, to show he had played fair, and left nothing in it; took out the clapper, desired me to give it to whom I pleased, then gave his bell to be filled again, and brought it to me. I that never used to drink, and seldom would try, had commonly some gentlemen with me that served for that purpose when it was necessary; and so I had the entertainment of seeing his health go current through about a dozen hands, with no more share in it than just what I pleased.  2

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