The Ink Bottle, Part Two!

Here is the conclusion of this poem continued from yesterday.

The Ink Bottle

But Nan, a young and wanton whore,  . 

Enlarged the cranny at the door,
And said,”Heaven guard us all from evil,
“An angel battles with the devil;
“But I my maidenhead will lay
“The little angel gains the day;
“Though Satan wrestles to a wonder,
“And strives to keep the angel under,
“Yet you shall see, mark what I tell ye,
“The angel ride on Satan’s belly.”

And troth the little slut had skill,
For in a moment he lay still,
And then sunk down by Ruth her side,
Who presently got up to ride;
Kick how he could she still held fast,
And got the victory at last;
Yet Ruth declared that never man
Was like her charming African,
And begged he would come back next day,
For she had something more to say.

In these diversions honest Ruth,
Employed her person and her youth
While Robin plyed his gray goose wing,
And never dreamed of such a thing.
But Ruth continued at this sport,
Until her petticoats grew short;
This gave great jolly to silly Robin,
Who thought that by his weekly jobbing,
He in his wife had raised this tumor,
Which put him in a merry humor.

But when a sooty boy crept out,
The witless fool began to doubt,
And all in rage he said to Ruth,
“Delilah, now confess the truth;
“Come, all thy wicked dealings tell,
“Make haste, thou cursed Jezebel.”
Ruth smiling on his said, “My dear,
“Why do I such harsh language hear?
“My virtue is well known to you,
“I have ever been chaste and true,
“And hoped that this my little boy,
“That gave me grief, would give you joy.”

“Yes, so it would,” he said in wrath,
“But Impudence, I have not faith
“To think when you and I are fair,
“That we should have a tawny heir.”

Ruth raised her voice and said, “You sot,
“You drunken beast, have you forgot,
“Nine months ago, oppressed with drink,
“You spilled at least a quart of ink
“Full on your breast, it stained your skin?
“But you were in a merry pin,
“And laid me down, then thrust it in!
“That gave my babe that dusky hue.
“Pox rot your for a nasty brute,
“Who did your milk-white wife pollute,”

This answer gave him joy and life,
He kissed the boy, and hugged his wife.

Note: printed on the page following the title page was the following: “from a collection of poems that have been generally ascribed to Thomas, sixth Earl of Harrington. He was the son of Charles, the fifth Earl, and Margaret Lesslie, Countess of Rothes; and fought on the Royal side at the battle of Shirreffmuir, along with his brother John Lesslie, Earl of Rothes, and his own son, Lord Binning. These poems, according to Pinkerton, were printed about 1730, and have been reprinted in 1753, 1765, 1767, and 1777. He was also the author of a treatise on forest trees, which has gone through several editions. He died in 1735.” However, if these dates are correct (and I am by no means an expert historian in such matters), these poems could only have been written by either the first or second Earl of Harrington (William Stanhope and W.S. Jr.).


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