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upon all extraordinary dilatations of that member as protrusions of zeal, or spiritual excrescences, were sure to honour every head they sat upon, as if they had been marks of grace ; but especially that of the preacher, whose ears were usually of the prime magnitude ; which, upon that account, he was very frequent and exact in exposing with all advantages to the people; in his rhetorical paroxysmis, turning sometimes to hold forth the one, and sometimes to hold forth the other. From which custom, the whole operation of preaching is to this very day, among their professors, styled by the phrase of holding forth.

Such was the progress of the faints for advancing the size of that member; and it is thought, the success would have been every way answerable, if, in process of time, a cruel king had not arose, who raised a bloody perfecution against all ears above a certain standard *. Upon which, some were glad to hide their flourishing sprouts in a black border ; others crept wholly under a periwig ; some were flit, others cropped, and a great number sliced off to the stumps. But of this more hereafter in my general history of ears ; which I design very speedily to bestow upon the public.

From this brief survey of the falling state of ears in the last age, and the small care had to advance their ancient growth in the present, it is

manifest,

This was K. Charles II, who, at his restoration, turned out all the disenting teachers that would not conform.

manifest, how little reason we can have to rely upon a hold fo short, fo weak, and so flippery; and that whoever desires to catch mankind fast, must have recourse to some other methods. Now, he that will examine human nature with circumspection enough, may discover several handles, whereof the fix * senses afford one a-piece, beside a great number that are screwed to the passions, and some few rivetted to the intellect. Among these last, curiosity is one, and, of all others, affords the firmest grasp; curiosity, that fpur in the side, that bridle in the mouth, that ring in the nose, of a lazy and impatient, and a grunting reader. By this handle it is, that an author should seize upon his readers; which as soon as he hath once compassed, all resistance and struggling are in vain ; and they become his prisoners as close as he pleases, till weariness or dulness force him to let go his grip.

And therefore I, the author of this miraculous treatise, having hitherto, beyond expectation, maintained, by the aforesaid handle, a firm hold upon my gentle readers; it is with great reluctance, that I am at length compelled to remit my grasp ; leaving them in the perusal of what remains to that natural ofcitancy inherent in the tribe. I can only assure thee, courteous reader, for both our comforts, that my concern is altogether equal to thine, for my unhappiness in losing, or mislaying among my papers, the remain

ing * Including Scaliger's.

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ing part of these memoirs ; which consisted of accidents, turns, and adventures, both new, agreeable, and surprising; and therefore calculated, in all due points, to the delicate taste of this our noble age. But, alas ! with my utmost cndeavours, I have been able only to retain a few of the heads. Under which, there was a full account, how Peter got a protection out of the King's-bench; and of a reconcilement between Jack and him, upon a design they had in a certain rainy night to, trepan brother Martin into a spunging-house, and there strip him to the ikin * : How Martin, with much ado, fhewed them both a fair pair of heels; how a new warrant came out against Peter ; upon which, how Jack left him in the lurch, stole his protection, and made use of it himself. How Jack's tatters came into fashion in court and city ; how he got upon a great horse t, and eat custard $. But the particulars

of

* In the reign of K. James II. the Presbyterians, by the King's invitation, joined with the Papists, against the church of England, and addressed him for repeal of the penal laws and test. The King, by his dispensing power, gave liberty of conscience, which both Papists and Presbyterians made use of. But, upon the Revolution, the Papists being down of course, the Presbyterians freely continued their assemblies, by virtue of K. James's indulgence, before they had a toleration by law. This, I believe, the author means by Jack's stealing Peter's protection, and making use of it himself.

+ Sir Humphrey Edwyn, a Presbyterian, was some years ago Lord Mayor of London, and had the insolence to go in his formalities to a conventicle, with the ensigns of his office.

Custard is a famous dish at a Lord Mayor's feast.

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