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were in the moon. One wretched villain confessed upon a time at the gallows that hee rob'd a gentleman and threw him [in] together with his horse. Empedocles might have made himselfe immortall here without fear of the discovery of his slippers, this yawning of the mountain is not past six yards broad, but four times as long. From hence wee made as much haste as wee could to Buxton, and gaind by that time it was darke by the helpe of a guide. The hilly rocky way continued still, and had made us almost despaire but that these strange sights satisfied us something, and wee conceiv'd some comfort in hope of resting ourselves the next day; but neither could wee get any oats here for our horses, although besides a little barly it bee the onely corne that grows in the countrey; harvest being not begun here, for all the sun had sunke below the equinox and left these hills to bee covered with frosts each morning. At this town the better sort of people wore shoes on Sondays, and some of them bands. Wee had the luck to meet with a sermon which wee could not have done in halfe a year before by relation (I think there is a true chappell of ease indeed here, for they hardly ever goe to church). Our entertainment was oat cakes and mutton, which wee fancied to taste like dog; our lodging in a low rafty roome, and they told us wee had higher hills to goe over than any wee had passed yet, which rellished worst of all, but for all this,
Buxtona quæ calidæ crebravere nomine lymphæ,
wee are more beholden to thee than to speak ill of thy fame, thy noble bath and springs afforded us more delight and pleasure than that wee should silently and ungratefully passe them over. These waters are very hot and judged not inferior to those of Somersetshiere,
Buxtoniis thermis vix præfero bathonianas.
They are frequented in the summer by the gentry of the adiacent countrys; they drink of the waters as well as bath in them, I judge them to bee the same although the well from whence they come is at some distance. It was pretty to observe the hissing of the cold and hot springs, so nigh one another that by putting my hand into the water, I conceived
one finger to freze till the other could not indure the heat of the boyling spring just by it. There is a handsome house built by them, and a convenient bathing place, though not very large; but neither the time of the year nor day of the week being seasonable to bathe in wee contented ourselves with the sight, without any more than a manuall immersion into these delicious springs. By this town of Buxton there is another subterraneous cavity as remarkable, though not as famous, as that of the peak hill, and goes by the name of Poole's hole, from an outlaw, as they told us, who if hee did not discover did yet at least make use of this cave for a refuge and secure hole against those that were hunting after him. The entrance into this is but low and troublesome to passe, not above a yard high, but after a little creeping wee came into a more spacious valt, and which encresed bigger and bigger till it came to bee as large as any church. In this hole there is water which dropps from the top continually and turnes into stone, with the which the side, bottom and top of this cave is crusted, shaping itselfe sometimes into pretty figures. We observed in one place the shape of an old man, in another of a lion, in a third of a foot, this water dropping from the topping causes these stones to hang like iseickle all about the roofe; one larger and more remarkable than the rest, about a yard and a halfe long, they called from the resemblance to it, the flitch of bacon. Wee hobbled under ground here nigh a furlong, till wee came to a piller of this hydrolith, water turn’d into stone, which they called the queen of Scots' piller, who, when she fled out Scotland in the reign of queen Elizabeth, coming to Buxton, mov'd with the same curiosity as our selves, enterr'd this cave, and went thus farr, giving it by so doing the honour of her name ever since. Wee brake of a piece of this pillar and brought it away with us. In our coming back again, wee went into another cleft of this hollow rock, which they called Poole's chamber, where wee saw his stone table and bed, and so creeping through that narrow place, by which wee had before entred, wee had the happinesse at length to see daylight again, and, according to the custome of the place, wee were no sooner enterd the open air but wee were accosted with a
very cleanly dreast, having each of them a little dish of water full of sweet hearbs, which they held out to us to wash our hands, which wee had dirty and bedaubed with the slime within this hole, which done and wee being somewhat taken with this pretty custome, did the more freely immerge our recompences for this their odde kinde of civility. On Munday morning wee again set out towards Chester, and taking a guide to direct us in the nigher and best way, which was not by the common rode, wee ascended the hills, white with frost and extream high; but, because there were some trees far pleasanter then ther stone hedges and the way not altogether so stony as before, together with our hope to bee now quickly past them, wee travailed with lesse teediousnesse then wee had done before. Our foot guide that went with us for the credit of the businese went a little way with shoes on, but after a short space, I perceiv'd him cast them of, behind a hedge, and march upon his bare hoofes, and asking him why hee did so, hee answer'd the hardness of the way forced him to it, for being used to it hee could goe any where barefoot more conveniently than with shoes. After four or five miles riding, wee came to have a prospect as delicious as almost England can afford. I never saw any to compare to it, except it were upon king Henry's mount in Petersham parke in Surrey, where you may see part of ten counties together, neither doth that goe in my opinion beyound this onely in this respect, that
you have a prospect every way there, from hence onely on one side, the Darby mountains quickly terminating your sight eastward. From this place wee could see the mountains in Wales, and have a fair view of most parts of the county Palatine of Chester, together with the southerne parts of Lancashire. Here the Valle Royall of England which seemed like paradise to us adorn'd with pleasant rivers, cristall springs, delighted buildings, high woods, which seem'd bending by sweet gales to becken us to come to them, afforded us so much delight as wee travailed without any discontentment over the back of these swelling mountains, till wee came to Maxfield where they end. As wee came down the last hill, though very glad that twas the last, yet it did not altogether repent us that wee had visited them, and conceiv'd this with
our selves when wee had, tandem aliquando, overcame these dangerous passages with Eneas in Virgill, or rather with Heroical Tom Coriat as hee travailed over the Savoyan mountains tandem et hæc olim meminisse juvabit.
Wee baited here at Maxfield, which is eight miles distance from Buxton, and counted a very good mornings worke, considering the steepnesse and unevennesse of the roade, and got seventeen miles further that night to Northwich in Cheshire, having now very pleasant way and a faire day. Here wee saw the salt spring, and the manner of their making salt, which they performe onely by boyling, and are not put to that trouble of exhaleing the brine in the sun, as those which make it out of the sea water; their springs being far salter, and so sooner boyled up than any water in the ocean. The next morning wee set out for Chester, which was but fourten miles, the furthest place of this our intended pilgrimage, and where we must set up our nil ultra of this voyage. Wee observed as wee rode through Cheshire, that most of the water look'd red and wee at first would not let our horses drink of it, but afterwards wee perceiv'd that it was caused by the rednesse of the earth, the soyle of this county being most part of it of that coulour, and not onely the earth but the stones too, as wee tooke notice of afterwards in most of the buildings in Chester.
Chester is an ancient fair city, having about nine or ten churches; remarkable for the convenient contrivance of the houses towards the street, under which you may walke dry in the most rayny weather, and is very advantageous for trading, there being in many places as it were four ranks of shops in one street, two towards the street, and two further inward beyond the roof'd walks. The city is exactly in the fashion of the Roman Castrum and populous. You may walke round the town upon the walls. There is a large bridge over the river, a little above which there is a small cataract or fall of the river. Wee viewed the water as it ebbs and flows here, but wee saw very few boats. There is a handsome cathedrall here, by the name of St. Worbert, though not very large, yet there is a fair parish church in the south isle: the cloisters are very small. The bishop's palace
was then repairing; the whole building of red but large stone. Wee did not so much admire it, having before seen that famous church at Lincolne, which so far exceeds it. In this city wee thoroughly refreshed ourselfe after our mountainous voyages, and lookt after our horses backs which were galld with travailing up and down hill; and finding very good accommodation and good eight-penny ordinary, not without excellent appetat, that the fashion here, wee tooke courage for our returne, setting out on Wednesday, and having a clear day, wee rode on pleasantly to Whitechurch, and because one of my acquaintance was seated in this towne, that wee might enjoy one other more fully, wee determined to passe no further that night, and therefore as soon as wee entered the towne wee inquired out the free school, which having seen, and given the boys a play, Mr. Wakeman, my very good friend the schoolmaster, accompanied us to our inn, and afterwards shew us the church which is very large one, and adornd with divers monuments and ancient tombs. Here lies the famous Lord Talbot slain at Burdeaux; about another tomb wee read this, Hic jacet Georgius Vernon Baccalaureus rector qui quondam ecclesiæ parochiales de albo monasterio obiit Anno MDXXXIV., and many other. Our friend's good company did this night wellcome us into Shropshire.
From hence wee steered our course towards Staffordshiere; and, taking only a cup at Draiton, without any more baiting wee got to Stafford, long before night. By reason wee had tired our selves with riding so far without resting, wee had no desire to walke that night, having a full view of the town house which is the thing most remarkable in this place, it being a handsome building, supported with stone pillars, leaded on the top, and railed also with stone. This town is not very bigge for a shire towne, yet hath been wall’d.
The people hereabout doe exercise running much. This day there was a foot race run betwixt a Shropshire man and a Stafford, from Draiton to some place the name of which I have forgot, twelve miles distance. The next morning wee rose early and rode to Lichfield, where wee had a sight of an incomparably neat church, which although it has been horribly defac'd and a great deal beaten down in these wars, yet the