Fiction > Harvard Classics > Thomas Dekker > The Shoemaker’s Holiday
Thomas Dekker (1570–1632).  The Shoemaker’s Holiday.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
Scene I
Enter LACY [as HANS], Skipper, HODGE, and FIRK 1

  SKIP.  Ick sal yow wat seggen, Hans; dis skip, dat comen from Candy, is al vol, by Got’s sacrament, van sugar, civet, almonds, cambrick, end alle dingen, towsand towsand ding. Nempt it, Hans, nempt it vor v meester. Daer be de bils van laden. Your meester Simon Eyre sal hae good copen. Wat seggen yow, Hans? 2
  FIRK.  Wat seggen de reggen de copen, slopen-laugh, Hodge, laugh! Hans. Mine liever broder Firk, bringt Meester Eyre tot det signe un Swannekin; daer sal yow finde dis skipper end me. Wat seggen yow, broder Firk? Doot it, Hodge. 3
Come, skipper.  Exeunt.
  FIRK.  Bring him, quoth you? Here’s no knavery, to bring my master to buy a ship worth the lading of two or three hundred thousand pounds. Alas, that’s nothing; a trifle, a bauble, Hodge.        4
  HODGE.  The truth is, Firk, that the merchant owner of the ship dares not shew his head, and therefore this skipper that deals for him, for the love he bears to Hans, offers my master Eyre a bargain in the commodities. He shall have a reasonable day of payment; he may sell the wares by that time, and be an huge gainer himself.
  FIRK.  Yea, but can my fellow Hans lend my master twenty porpentines as an earnest penny?
  HODGE.  Portuguese, 4 thou wouldst say; here they be, Firk; hark, they jingle in my pocket like St. Mary Overy’s bells.

  FIRK.  Mum, here comes my dame and my master. She’ll scold, on my life, for loitering this Monday: but all’s one, let them all say what they can, Monday’s our holiday.
        You sing, Sir Sauce, but I beshrew your heart,
I fear, for this your singing we shall smart.
  FIRK.  Smart for me, dame; why, dame, why?
  HODGE.  Master, I hope you’ll not suffer my dame to take down your journeymen.
  FIRK.  If she take me down, I’ll take her up; yea, and take her down too, a button-hole lower.        12
  EYRE.  Peace, Firk; not I, Hodge; by the life of Pharaoh, by the Lord of Ludgate, by this beard, every hair whereof I value at a king’s ransom, she shall not meddle with you.—Peace, you bombast-cotton-candle-quean; away, queen of clubs; quarrel not with me and my men, with me and my fine Firk; I’ll firk you, if you do.
  MARG.  Yea, yea, man, you may use me as you please; but let that pass.
  EYRE.  Let it pass, let it vanish away; peace! Am I not Simon Eyre? Are not these my brave men, brave shoemakers, all gentlemen of the gentle craft? Prince am I none, yet am I nobly born, as being the sole son of a shoemaker. Away, rubbish! vanish, melt; melt like kitchen-stuff.
  MARG.  Yea, yea, ’tis well; I must be call’d rubbish, kitchen-stuff, for a sort 5 of knaves.        16
  FIRK.  Nay, dame, you shall not weep and wail in woe for me. Master, I’ll stay no longer; here’s an inventory of my shop-tools. Adieu, master; Hodge, farewell.
  HODGE.  Nay, stay, Firk; thou shalt not go alone.
  MARG.  I pray, let them go; there be more maids than Mawkin, more men than Hodge, and more fools than Firk.
  FIRK.  Fools? Nails! if I tarry now, I would my guts might be turn’d to shoe-thread.        20
  HODGE.  And if I stay, I pray God I may be turn’d to a Turk, and set in Finsbury 6 for boys to shoot at.—Come, Firk.
  EYRE.  Stay, my fine knaves, you arms of my trade, you pillars of my profession. What, shall a tittle-tattle’s words make you forsake Simon Eyre?—Avaunt, kitchen-stuff! Rip, you brown-bread Tannikin; out of my sight! Move me not! Have not I ta’en you from selling tripes in East-cheap, and set you in my shop, and made you hail-fellow with Simon Eyre, the shoemaker? And now do you deal thus with my journeymen? Look, you powder-beef-quean, on the face of Hodge, here’s a face for a lord.
  FIRK.  And here’s a face for any lady in Christendom.
  EYRE.  Rip, you chitterling, avaunt! Boy, bid the tapster of the Boar’s Head fill me a dozen cans of beer for my journeymen.        24
  FIRK.  A dozen cans? O, brave! Hodge, now I’ll stay.
  EYRE.  [In a low voice to the Boy.] An the knave fills any more than two, he pays for them.  [Exit Boy. Aloud.]—A dozen cans of beer for my journeymen. [Re-enter Boy.] Here, you mad Mesopotamians, wash your livers with this liquor. Where be the odd ten? No more, Madge, no more.—Well said. Drink and to work!—What work dost thou, Hodge? What work?
  HODGE.  I am a making a pair of shoes for my lord mayor’s daughter, Mistress Rose.
  FIRK.  And I a pair of shoes for Sybil, my lord’s maid. I deal with her.        28
  EYRE.  Sybil? Fie, defile not thy fine workmanly fingers with the feet of kitchen-stuff and basting-ladles. Ladies of the court, fine ladies my lads, commit their feet to our apparelling; put gross work to Hans. Yark and seam, yark 7 and seam!
  FIRK.  For yarking and seaming let me alone, an I come to’t.
  HODGE.  Well, master, all this is from the bias. 8 Do you remember the ship my fellow Hans told you of? The skipper and he are both drinking at the Swan. Here be the Portuguese to give earnest. If you go through with it, you cannot choose but be a lord at least.
  FIRK.  Nay, dame, if my master prove not a lord, and you a lady, hang me.        32
  MARG.  Yea, like enough, if you may loiter and tipple thus.
  FIRK.  Tipple, dame? No, we have been bargaining with Skellum Skanderbag: 9 can you Dutch spreaken for a ship of silk Cyprus, laden with sugar-candy.
Enter Boy with a velvet coat and an Alderman’s gown. EYRE puts them on

  EYRE.  Peace, Firk; silence, Tittle-tattle! Hodge, I’ll go through with it. Here’s a seal-ring, and I have sent for a guarded gown 10 and a damask cassock. See where it comes; look here, Maggy; help me, Firk; apparel me, Hodge; silk and satin, you mad Philistines, silk and satin.
  FIRK.  Ha, ha, my master will be as proud as a dog in a doublet, all in beaten 11 damask and velvet.        36
  EYRE.  Softly, Firk, for rearing 12 of the nap, and wearing threadbare my garments. How dost thou like me, Firk? How do I look, my fine Hodge?
  HODGE.  Why, now you look like yourself, master. I warrant you, there’s few in the city but will give you the wall, 13 and come upon you with 14 the right worshipful.
  FIRK.  Nails, my master looks like a threadbare cloak new turned and dressed. Lord, Lord, to see what good raiment doth! Dame, dame, are you not enamoured?
  EYRE.  How say’st thou, Maggy, am I not brisk? Am I not fine?        40
  MARG.  Fine? By my troth, sweetheart, very fine! By my troth, I never liked thee so well in my life, sweetheart; but let that pass. I warrant, there be many women in the city have not such handsome husbands, but only for their apparel; but let that pass too.
Re-enter HANS and SKIPPER

  HANS.  Godden day, mester. Dis be de skipper dat heb de skip van marchandice; de commodity ben good; nempt it, master, nempt it. 15
  EYRE.  Godamercy, Hans; welcome, skipper. Where lies this ship of merchandise?
  SKIP.  De skip ben in revere; dor be van Sugar, cyvet, almonds, cambrick, and a towsand, towsand tings, gotz sacrament; nempt it, mester: ye sal heb good copen. 16        44
  FIRK.  To him, master! O sweet master! O sweet wares! Prunes, almonds, sugar-candy, carrot-roots, turnips, O brave fatting meat! Let not a man buy a nutmeg but yourself.
  EYRE.  Peace, Firk! Come, skipper, I’ll go aboard with you.—Hans, have you made him drink?
  SKIP.  Yaw, yaw, ic heb veale gedrunck. 17
  EYRE.  Come, Hans, follow me. Skipper, thou shalt have my countenance in the city.  Exeunt.        48
  FIRK.  Yaw heb veale gedrunck, quoth a. They may well be called butter-boxes, when they drink fat veal and thick beer too. But come, dame, I hope you’ll chide us no more.
  MARG.  No, faith, Firk; no, perdy, 18 Hodge. I do feel honour creep upon me, and which is more, a certain rising in my flesh; but let that pass.
  FIRK.  Rising in your flesh do you feel, say you? Ay, you may be with child, but why should not my master feel a rising in his flesh, having a gown and a gold ring on? But you are such a shrew, you’ll soon pull him down.
  MARG.  Ha, ha! prithee, peace! Thou mak’st my worship laugh; but let that pass. Come, I’ll go in; Hodge, prithee, go before me; Firk, follow me.        52
  FIRK.  Firk doth follow: Hodge, pass out in state.  Exeunt.
Note 1. A room in Eyre’s house. [back]
Note 2. I’ll tell you what, Hans; this ship that is come from Candia, is quite full, by God’s sacrament, of sugar, civet, almonds, cambric, and all things; a thousand, thousand things. Take it, Hans, take it for your master. There are the bills of lading. Your master, Simon Eyre, shall have a good bargain. What say you, Hans? [back]
Note 3. My dear brother Firk, bring Master Eyre to the sign of the Swan; there shall you find this skipper and me. What say you, brother Firk? Do it, Hodge. [back]
Note 4. A coin worth about three pounds twelve shillings. [back]
Note 5. Set. [back]
Note 6. Finsbury was a famous practising ground for archery. [back]
Note 7. Prepare. [back]
Note 8. Beside the point. [back]
Note 9. German: Schelm, a scoundrel. Skanderbag, or Scander Beg (i. e. Lord Alexander), a Turkish name for John Kastriota, the Albanian hero, who freed his country from the yoke of the Turks (1443-1467).—Warnke and Proescholdt. [back]
Note 10. A robe ornamented with guards or facings. [back]
Note 11. Stamped. [back]
Note 12. Ruffling. [back]
Note 13. Yield precedence. [back]
Note 14. Address you as. [back]
Note 15. Good day, master. This is the skipper that has the ship of merchandise; the commodity is good; take it, master, take it. [back]
Note 16. The ship lies in the river; there are sugar, civet, almonds, cambric, and a thousand thousand things. By God’s sacrament, take it, master; you shall have a good bargain. [back]
Note 17. Yes, yes, I have drunk well. [back]
Note 18. Fr. Par Dieu. [back]


Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.