Friday, August 19, 2011

The Good Old Gentleman

Thomas Allen had "a great many mathematicall instruments and glasses in his chamber," which meant that "the vulgar did verily beleeve him to be a conjurer." Once, when he went on vacation, "he happened to leave his watch in the chamber windowe - (watches were then rarities) - The maydes came in to make the bed, and hearing a thing in a case cry Tick, Tick, Tick, presently concluded that that was his Devill, and took it by the string with the [tongs] and threw it out of the windowe into the mote... It so happened that the string hung on a sprig of an elder that grew out of the mote, and this confirmed them that 'twas the Devill. So the good old gentleman gott his watch again." John Aubrey's BRIEF LIVES.