Chapter 23 How Panurge maketh the motion of a return to Raminagrobis
Let us return, quoth Panurge, not ceasing, to the uttermost of our abilities,
to ply him with wholesome admonitions for the furtherance of his salvation.
Let us go back, for God's sake; let us go, in the name of God. It will be _ery meritorious work, and of great charity in us to deal so in the matter,
and provide so well for him that, albeit he come to lose both body and life,
he may at least escape the risk and danger of the eternal damnation of hi_oul. We will by our holy persuasions bring him to a sense and feeling of hi_scapes, induce him to acknowledge his faults, move him to a cordia_epentance of his errors, and stir up in him such a sincere contrition o_eart for his offences, as will prompt him with all earnestness to cry mercy,
and to beg pardon at the hands of the good fathers, as well of the absent a_f such as are present. Whereupon we will take instrument formally an_uthentically extended, to the end he be not, after his decease, declared a_eretic, and condemned, as were the hobgoblins of the provost's wife o_rleans, to the undergoing of such punishments, pains, and tortures as are du_o and inflicted on those that inhabit the horrid cells of the inferna_egions; and withal incline, instigate, and persuade him to bequeath and leav_n legacy (by way of an amends and satisfaction for the outrage and injur_one to those good religious fathers throughout all the convents, cloisters,
and monasteries of this province), many bribes, a great deal of mass-singing,
store of obits, and that sempiternally, on the anniversary day of his decease,
every one of them all be furnished with a quintuple allowance, and that th_reat borachio replenished with the best liquor trudge apace along the tables,
as well of the young duckling monkitoes, lay brothers, and lowermost degree o_he abbey lubbards, as of the learned priests and reverend clerks,—the ver_eanest of the novices and mitiants unto the order being equally admitted t_he benefit of those funerary and obsequial festivals with the aged rector_nd professed fathers. This is the surest ordinary means whereby from God h_ay obtain forgiveness. Ho, ho, I am quite mistaken; I digress from th_urpose, and fly out of my discourse, as if my spirits were a-wool-gathering.
The devil take me, if I go thither! Virtue God! The chamber is already full o_evils. O what a swinging, thwacking noise is now amongst them! O the terribl_oil that they keep! Hearken, do you not hear the rustling, thumping bustle o_heir strokes and blows, as they scuffle with one another, like true devil_ndeed, who shall gulp up the Raminagrobis soul, and be the first bringer o_t, whilst it is hot, to Monsieur Lucifer? Beware, and get you hence! for m_art, I will not go thither. The devil roast me if I go! Who knows but tha_hese hungry mad devils may in the haste of their rage and fury of thei_mpatience take a qui for a quo, and instead of Raminagrobis snatch up poo_anurge frank and free? Though formerly, when I was deep in debt, they alway_ailed. Get you hence! I will not go thither. Before God, the very bar_pprehension thereof is like to kill me. To be in a place where there ar_reedy, famished, and hunger-starved devils; amongst factious devils—amids_rading and trafficking devils—O the Lord preserve me! Get you hence! I dar_awn my credit on it, that no Jacobin, Cordelier, Carmelite, Capuchin,
Theatin, or Minim will bestow any personal presence at his interment. Th_iser they, because he hath ordained nothing for them in his latter will an_estament. The devil take me, if I go thither. If he be damned, to his ow_oss and hindrance be it. What the deuce moved him to be so snappish an_epravedly bent against the good fathers of the true religion? Why did he cas_hem off, reject them, and drive them quite out of his chamber, even in tha_ery nick of time when he stood in greatest need of the aid, suffrage, an_ssistance of their devout prayers and holy admonitions? Why did not he b_estament leave them, at least, some jolly lumps and cantles of substantia_eat, a parcel of cheek-puffing victuals, and a little belly-timber an_rovision for the guts of these poor folks, who have nothing but their life i_his world? Let him go thither who will, the devil take me if I go; for, if _hould, the devil would not fail to snatch me up. Cancro. Ho, the pox! Get yo_ence, Friar John! Art thou content that thirty thousand wainload of devil_hould get away with thee at this same very instant? If thou be, at my reques_o these three things. First, give me thy purse; for besides that thy money i_arked with crosses, and the cross is an enemy to charms, the same may befal_o thee which not long ago happened to John Dodin, collector of the excise o_oudray, at the ford of Vede, when the soldiers broke the planks. This moneye_ellow, meeting at the very brink of the bank of the ford with Friar Ada_rankcod, a Franciscan observantin of Mirebeau, promised him a new frock,
provided that in the transporting of him over the water he would bear him upo_is neck and shoulders, after the manner of carrying dead goats; for he was _usty, strong-limbed, sturdy rogue. The condition being agreed upon, Fria_rankcod trusseth himself up to his very ballocks, and layeth upon his back,
like a fair little Saint Christopher, the load of the said supplicant Dodin,
and so carried him gaily and with a good will, as Aeneas bore his fathe_nchises through the conflagration of Troy, singing in the meanwhile a prett_ve Maris Stella. When they were in the very deepest place of all the ford, _ittle above the master-wheel of the water-mill, he asked if he had any coi_bout him. Yes, quoth Dodin, a whole bagful; and that he needed not t_istrust his ability in the performance of the promise which he had made unt_im concerning a new frock. How! quoth Friar Crankcod, thou knowest wel_nough that by the express rules, canons, and injunctions of our order we ar_orbidden to carry on us any kind of money. Thou art truly unhappy, for havin_ade me in this point to commit a heinous trespass. Why didst thou not leav_hy purse with the miller? Without fail thou shalt presently receive th_eward for it; and if ever hereafter I may but lay hold upon thee within th_imits of our chancel at Mirebeau, thou shalt have the Miserere even to th_itulos. With this, suddenly discharging himself of his burden, he throws m_own your Dodin headlong. Take example by this Dodin, my dear friend Fria_ohn, to the end that the devils may the better carry thee away at thine ow_ase. Give me thy purse. Carry no manner of cross upon thee. Therein lieth a_vident and manifestly apparent danger. For if you have any silver coined wit_ cross upon it, they will cast thee down headlong upon some rocks, as th_agles use to do with the tortoises for the breaking of their shells, as th_ald pate of the poet Aeschylus can sufficiently bear witness. Such a fal_ould hurt thee very sore, my sweet bully, and I would be sorry for it. O_therwise they will let thee fall and tumble down into the high swollen wave_f some capacious sea, I know not where; but, I warrant thee, far enoug_ence, as Icarus fell, which from thy name would afterwards get th_enomination of the Funnelian Sea.
Secondly, be out of debt. For the devils carry a great liking to those tha_re out of debt. I have sore felt the experience thereof in mine ow_articular; for now the lecherous varlets are always wooing me, courting me,
and making much of me, which they never did when I was all to pieces. The sou_f one in debt is insipid, dry, and heretical altogether.
Thirdly, with the cowl and Domino de Grobis, return to Raminagrobis; and i_ase, being thus qualified, thirty thousand boatsful of devils forthwith com_ot to carry thee quite away, I shall be content to be at the charge of payin_or the pint and faggot. Now, if for the more security thou wouldst som_ssociate to bear thee company, let not me be the comrade thou searchest for;
think not to get a fellow-traveller of me,—nay, do not. I advise thee for th_est. Get you hence; I will not go thither. The devil take me if I go.
Notwithstanding all the fright that you are in, quoth Friar John, I would no_are so much as might possibly be expected I should, if I once had but m_word in my hand. Thou hast verily hit the nail on the head, quoth Panurge,
and speakest like a learned doctor, subtle and well-skilled in the art o_evilry. At the time when I was a student in the University of Toulouse
(Tolette), that same reverend father in the devil, Picatrix, rector of th_iabological faculty, was wont to tell us that the devils did naturally fea_he bright glancing of swords as much as the splendour and light of the sun.
In confirmation of the verity whereof he related this story, that Hercules, a_is descent into hell to all the devils of those regions, did not by half s_uch terrify them with his club and lion's skin as afterwards Aeneas did wit_is clear shining armour upon him, and his sword in his hand well-furbishe_nd unrusted, by the aid, counsel, and assistance of the Sybilla Cumana. Tha_as perhaps the reason why the senior John Jacomo di Trivulcio, whilst he wa_-dying at Chartres, called for his cutlass, and died with a drawn sword i_is hand, laying about him alongst and athwart around the bed and everywher_ithin his reach, like a stout, doughty, valorous and knight-like cavalier; b_hich resolute manner of fence he scared away and put to flight all the devil_hat were then lying in wait for his soul at the passage of his death. Whe_he Massorets and Cabalists are asked why it is that none of all the devils d_t any time enter into the terrestrial paradise? their answer hath been, is,
and will be still, that there is a cherubin standing at the gate thereof wit_ flame-like glistering sword in his hand. Although, to speak in the tru_iabological sense or phrase of Toledo, I must needs confess and acknowledg_hat veritably the devils cannot be killed or die by the stroke of a sword, _o nevertheless avow and maintain, according to the doctrine of the sai_iabology, that they may suffer a solution of continuity (as if with th_hable thou shouldst cut athwart the flame of a burning fire, or the gros_pacous exhalations of a thick and obscure smoke), and cry out like ver_evils at their sense and feeling of this dissolution, which in real deed _ust aver and affirm is devilishly painful, smarting, and dolorous.
When thou seest the impetuous shock of two armies, and vehement violence o_he push in their horrid encounter with one another, dost thou think,
Ballockasso, that so horrible a noise as is heard there proceedeth from th_oice and shouts of men, the dashing and jolting of harness, the clatterin_nd clashing of armies, the hacking and slashing of battle-axes, the justlin_nd crashing of pikes, the bustling and breaking of lances, the clamour an_hrieks of the wounded, the sound and din of drums, the clangour an_hrillness of trumpets, the neighing and rushing in of horses, with th_earful claps and thundering of all sorts of guns, from the double cannon t_he pocket pistol inclusively? I cannot goodly deny but that in these variou_hings which I have rehearsed there may be somewhat occasionative of the hug_ell and tintamarre of the two engaged bodies. But the most fearful an_umultuous coil and stir, the terriblest and most boisterous garboil an_urry, the chiefest rustling black santus of all, and most principa_urlyburly springeth from the grievously plangorous howling and lowing o_evils, who pell-mell, in a hand-over-head confusion, waiting for the poo_ouls of the maimed and hurt soldiery, receive unawares some strokes wit_words, and so by those means suffer a solution of and division in th_ontinuity of their aerial and invisible substances; as if some lackey,
snatching at the lard-slices stuck in a piece of roast meat on the spit,
should get from Mr. Greasyfist a good rap on the knuckles with a cudgel. The_ry out and shout like devils, even as Mars did when he was hurt by Diomede_t the siege of Troy, who, as Homer testifieth of him, did then raise hi_oice more horrifically loud and sonoriferously high than ten thousand me_ogether would have been able to do. What maketh all this for our presen_urpose? I have been speaking here of well-furbished armour and bright shinin_words. But so is it not, Friar John, with thy weapon; for by a lon_iscontinuance of work, cessation from labour, desisting from making i_fficiate, and putting it into that practice wherein it had been formerl_ccustomed, and, in a word, for want of occupation, it is, upon my faith,
become more rusty than the key-hole of an old powdering-tub. Therefore it i_xpedient that you do one of these two things: either furbish your weapo_ravely, and as it ought to be, or otherwise have a care that, in the rust_ase it is in, you do not presume to return to the house of Raminagrobis. Fo_y part, I vow I will not go thither. The devil take me if I go.