Letter from George Taylor / sheet 2

I asked her

Whether in all her familiarity with these spirits, none of them had showed ?comrryed her any strange sights out of town at any time? And she answered

Yes, Richard appointed to meet her at Weeks Green, and so did. And there caused her to sit down upon a molehill, and she did, as she said. And then he vanished away presently. After whose departure from her, the molehill she sat upon began to dance her up and down. And all the ground round about her began to shake, as she said, as though it would have taken her in. And at her sitting in a marvellous great fear, and in a very great sweat, as she sat, did appear unto her two all in black, one in the shape of a man, and another in the shape of a woman, one going to meet with the other. But before they met, she said, upon the sudden they vanished both away.


And then presently after did appear, she said, Richard, and he ask her

How now: what hast thou seen? She told him

Two all in black. He answered her that

--- of them was the Queen-- t------ if she had kneeled down to her she w--- h------ so long as she had lived. And she answered to him

If ---------- that she would have kneeled to her. Then after w--- ------from thence home.


When she and the spirits were together, ?oyc ?have she said laughed at her and told the rest of the spirits,

Look do you see the same fool, she would have kneeled today to the Queen of the Fairies is she for a living! Is she not a goodly Fool?

Whereupon Swaffer’s wife, as she said, fell to weeping and so parted from them all in tears.

My Masters, you that be of the Jury, I beseech you mark and think what credence is to be given to so lewd a person as this how many devices this Swaffer’s wife had ?ci. Which if it please Master Mayor, he is likewise able to certify you, and Master Bracegirdle, what report she made upon her confession before them, concerning ?co two pennyworth of ?Katherine pears which Mistress ?Mayoress, that now is, should buy.

This Swaffer’s wife told me that

Spirit Margery had been at Master Mayor’s house, that now is, to see if there were any manner of repentance in Mistress Mayoress for her former* life. Saying by these words to Spirit marg Richard

Sirrah Dick, dost thou know where I have been? He answered

No. Sayeth she

I have been at Master Mayor’s, to see if there be any manner of repentance with her for her former life. And as thou thinkest, how I have made trial of her, ?she both, sayeth Margery, as Swaffer’s wife said.

Two pennyworth of Katherine pears, some of them Master Mayor and Mistress Mayoress did eat, and the rest she set ?viz in a basin in her closet.


And Margery told Richard that

She had brought them away, and bid him ?like: her they be: and let them roll in the ?loth flower, as Swaffers [wife] said, as goodly pears as ever she saw.

Then said Spirit Margery

What thinkest thou, Dick, I have left in the basin instead of the pears, a thing in the shape of a man’s members. And I will go again soon, sayeth Margery, to see how she doth apply it, and what repentance is with her.


And when she came back again as ------ telleth, sayeth Margery, there is no ma---- r---- world in her, for, Sirrah Dick, s—th------ came to the basin and see - ?his ?th------ upon the board, and turned the bottom of the ?bas------ into her ?aperries and conveyed the things in the basin ------ place. But sayeth Margery to Richard, as Swaffer’s [wife sayeth], it had been good for Mistress Mayoress that she had never ?done ?so. For she would make her know, before she had done with her, that she had [highly] offended her God.

These four spirits appeared to Swaffer’s wife in first in Lent or thereabouts, as she telleth, as I remember, in a great shake of sickness, which she and her husband and her child had, and so have had familiarity with her divers times sithence.

*Martha Higgons married mayor Thomas Hamon, 30 years her senior, after he had separated from his first wife. Three weeks after his death she married Thomas Higgons, the next mayor. There is no other evidence about her character.

[end of sheet 2]

[RYE 13/6 letter]