Page:A Counter-Blaste to Tobacco.djvu/33

This page has been validated.

A COVNTER-BLASTE TO TOBACCO.

29

(whereof our present purpose is), is euen at this day accounted so effeminate among the Indians themselves, as in the market they will offer no price for a slaue to be sold, whome they finde to be a great Tobacco taker.

Now how you are by this custome disabled in your goods, let the gentry of this land beare witnesse, some of them bestowing three, some foure hundred pounds a yeere[1] vpon this precious stinke, which I am sure might be bestowed vpon many farre better vses. I read indeede of a knauish Courtier, who for abusing the favour of the Emperour Alexander Seuerus his Master by taking bribes to intercede, for sundry persons in his master’s eare (for whom he neuer once opened his mouth) was iustly choked with smoke, with this doome, Fumo pereat, qui fumum vendidit: but of so many smoke-buyers, as are at this present in this kingdome, I neuer read nor heard.

And for the vanities committed in this filthie custome, is it not both great vanitie and vncleanenesse, that at the table, a place of respect, of cleanlinesse, of modestie, men should not be ashamed, to sit tossing of Tobacco pipes, and puffing of the smoke of Tobacco one to another, making the filthie smoke and stinke thereof, to exhale athwart the dishes, and infect the aire, when very often, men that abhorre it are at their


  1. It was not dreamt of in James’s philosophy, that the price of tobacco might fall to 5 s. 6 d. and less a pound.