Tarltons Jests


Tarltons jests Drawne into these three parts. 1 His court-witty iests. 2 His sound city iests. 3 His countrey pretty iests. Full of delight, wit, and honest mirth.


London: Printed by I[ohn] H[aviland] for Andrew Crook, and are to be sold in Pauls Church-yard, at the signe of the Beare, 1638.




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How Tarlton made Armin his adopted sonne to succeed him.


TArlton kéeping a Tauerne in Gracious-street, hee let it to another, who was indebted to Armins Master, a Goldsmith in Lombard-street, yet he himselfe had a chamber in the same house. And this Armin (being then a wag) came often thither to demand his Masters money, which he sometimes had, and sometimes had not. In the end the man growing poore, told the boy hée had no money for his Master, and hée must beare with him. The mans name being Charles Armin, made this Uerse, writing it with Chalke on a Waine-scot.

O world, why wilt thou lye?

Is this Charles the great? that I deny.

Indeed Charles the great before:

But now Charles the lesse, being poore.


Tarlton comming into the roome, reading it, and partly acquainted with the boyes humour, comming often thither for his Masters money, tooke a péece of Chalk, and wrote this Ryme by it:


A wagge thou art, none can preuent thee;

And thy desert shall content thee,

Let me diuine: As I am, so in time thou’lt be the same,

My adopted sonne therefore be,

To enioy my Clownes sute after me.

And sée how it fell out. The boy reading this, so loued Tarlton after, that regarding him with more respect, hée vsed to his Playes, and fell in a league with his humour: and priuate practice brought him to present playing, and at this houre performes the same, where, at the Globe on the Banks side men may sée him.


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