Of the commodities of Ireland , and policie and keeping thereof, and conquering of wild Irish: with an incident of Wales. Chap. 9.I CAST to speake of Ireland but a litle:
Commodities of it I will entitle,
Hides, and fish, Salmon, Hake, Herringe,
Irish wooll, and linen cloth, faldinge,
And marterns goode ben her marchandie,
Hertes Hides, and other of Venerie.
Skinnes of Otter, Squirell and Irish hare,
Of sheepe, lambe, and Foxe, is her chaffare,
Felles of Kiddes, and Conies great plentie.
So that if Ireland helpe us to keepe the sea,
Because the King cleped is Rex Angliae,
And is Dominus also Hyberniae,
Old possessed by Progenitours:
The Irish men have cause like to ours
Our land and hers together to defend,
That no enemie should hurt ne offend,
Ireland ne us: but as one commontie
Should helpe well to keepe about the sea:
For they have havens great, and goodly bayes,
Sure, wyde and deepe, of good assayes,
At Waterford, and costes many one.
And as men sayne in England be there none
Better havens, ships in to ride,
No more sure for enemies to abide.
Why speake I thus so much of Ireland ?
For all so much as I can understand,
It is fertile for things that there doe growe
And multiplien, loke who lust to knowe,
So large, so good, and so commodious,
That to declare is strange and marvailous.
For of silver and golde there is the oore,
Among the wilde Irish though they be poore.
For they are rude and can thereon no skill:
So that if we had their peace and good will
To myne and fine, and metal for to pure,
In wilde Irish might we finde the cure,
As in London saith a Juellere,
Which brought from thence golde oore to us here,
Whereof was fyned mettal goode and clene,
As they touch, no better could be seene.
Nowe here beware and heartily take intent,
As yee will answere at last judgement,
That for slought and for racheshede
Yee remember with all your might to hede
To keepe Ireland that it be not lost.
For it is a boterasse and a post,
Under England, and Wales another:
God forbid, but ech were others brothers
Of one ligeance due unto the king.
But I have pittie in good faith of this thing
That I shall say with avisement:
I am aferde that Ireland will be shent:
It must awey, it wol bee lost from us,
But if thou helpe, thou Jesu gracious,
And give us grace al slought to leve beside.
For much thing in my herte is hide,
Which in another treatise I caste to write
Made al onely for that soile and site,
Of fertile Ireland , wich might not be forborne,
But if England were nigh as goode as gone.
God forbid that a wild Irish wirlinge
Should be chosen for to bee their kinge,
After her conqueste for our last puissance,
And hinder us by other lands alliance.
Wise men seyn, wich felin not, ne douten,
That wild Irish so much of ground have gotten
There upon us, as likenesse may be
Like as England to sheeris two or three
Of this our land is made comparable:
So wild Irish have wonne on us unable
Yet to defend, and of none power,
That our ground is there a litle corner,
To all Ireland in true comparison.
It needeth no more this matter to expon.
Which if it bee lost, as Christ Jesu forbed,
Farewel Wales, then England commeth to dred,
For aliance of Scotland and of Spaine,
And other moe, as the pety Bretaine,
And so have enemies environ round about.
I beseech God, that some prayers devout
Mutt let the said apparance probable
Thus disposed without feyned fable.
But all onely for perill that I see
Thus imminent, it's likely for to bee.
And well I wotte, that from hence to Rome,
And, as men say, in all Christendome,
Is no ground ne land to Ireland liche,
So large, so good, so plenteous, so riche,
That to this worde Dominus doe long.
Then mee semeth that right were and no wrong,
To get the lande: and it were piteous
To us to lese this high name Dominus.
And all this word Dominus of name
Shuld have the ground obeysant wilde and tame.
That name and people togidre might accord
Al the ground subject to the Lord.
And that it is possible to bee subject,
Unto the king wel shal it bee detect,
In the litle booke that I of spake.
I trowe reson al this wol undertake.
And I knowe wel howe it stante,
Alas fortune beginneth so to scant,
Or ellis grace, that deade is governance.
For so minisheth parties of our puissance,
In that land that wee lese every yere,
More ground and more, as well as yee may here.
I herd a man speake to mee full late.
Which was a lord of full great estate;
Than expense of one yere done in France
Werred on men well willed of puissance
This said ground of Ireland to conquere.
And yet because England might not forbere
These said expenses gadred in one yeere,
But in three yeeres or foure gadred up here,
Might winne Ireland to a finall conqueste,
In one sole yeere to set us all at reste.
And how soone wolde this be paied ageyne:
Which were it worth yerely, if wee not feyne:
I wol declare, who so luste to looke,
I trowe full plainely in my litle booke.
But covetise, and singularitie
Of owne profite, envie, crueltie,
Hath doon us harme, and doe us every day,
And musters made that shame is to say:
Our money spent al to litle availe,
And our enimies so greatly doone prevaile,
That what harme may fall and overthwerte
I may unneth write more for sore of herte.
An exhortation to the keeping of Wales.BEWARE of Wales, Christ Jesu mutt us keepe,
That it make not our childers childe to weepe,
Ne us also, so if it goe his way,
By unwarenes: seth that many a day
Men have bee ferde of her rebellion,
By great tokens and ostentation:
Seche the meanes with a discrete avise,
And helpe that they rudely not arise
For to rebell, that Christ it forbede.
Looke wel aboute, for God wote yee have neede,
Unfainingly, unfeyning and unfeynt,
That conscience for slought you not atteynt:
Kepe well that grounde, for harme that may ben used,
Or afore God mutte yee ben accused.