Obrázky stránek

ter, and therefore had herein nothing else to do but only to rehearse those things which you and I together heard master Raphael‡ tell and declare. Wherefore there was no cause why I should study to set forth the matter with eloquence: forasmuch as his talk could not be fine and eloquent, being first not studied for, but sudden and unpremeditate, and then, as you know, of a man better seen1 in the Greek language than in the Latin tongue. And my writing, the nigher it should approach to his homely, plain, and simples speech, so much the nigher should it go to the truth, which is the only mark whereunto I do and ought to direct all my travail and study herein.

[ocr errors]

children, and talk with my servants. All the which things I reckon and account among business, forasmuch as they must of necessity be done: and done must they needs be, unless a man will be a stranger in his own house. And in any wise a man must so fashion and order his conditions, and so appoint and dispose himself, that he be merry, jocund, and pleasant among them whom either nature hath provided, or chance hath made, or he himself hath chosen, to be the fellows and companions of his life, so that with too much gentle behavior and familiarity he do not mar them, and by too much sufferance of his servants make them his masters.

I grant and confess, friend Peter, myself dis- Among these things now rehearsed stealeth charged of so much labor, having all these away the day, the month, the year. When do things ready done to my hand, that almost I write then? And all this while have I spoken there was nothing left for me to do. Else no word of sleep, neither yet of meat, which either the invention or the disposition of this among a great number doth waste no less time matter might have required of a wit neither than doth sleep, wherein almost half the lifebase, neither at all unlearned, both some time time of man creepeth away. I therefore do and leisure, and also some study. But if it win and get only that time which I steal from were requisite and necessary that the matter sleep and meat. Which time because it is very should also have been written eloquently, and little, and yet somewhat it is, therefore have I not alone truly, of a surety that thing could I once at the last, though it be long first, finhave performed by no time nor study. But ished Utopia, and have sent it to you, friend now seeing all these cares, stays, and lets2 were Peter, to read and peruse, to the intent that taken away, wherein else so much labor and if anything have escaped me, you might put study should have been employed, and that me in remembrance of it. For though in this there remained no other thing for me to do behalf I do not greatly mistrust myself (which but only to write plainly the matter as I heard would God I were somewhat in wit and learnit spoken, that indeed was a thing light and ing as I am not all of the worst and dullest easy to be done. memory) yet have I not so great trust and confidence in it that I think nothing could fall out of my mind.

Howbeit, to the dispatching of this so little business my other cares and troubles did leave almost less than no leisure. Whiles I do daily bestow my time about law matters, some to plead, some to hear, some as an arbitrator with mine award to determine, some as an umpire or a judge, with my sentence finally to discuss; whiles I go one way to see and visit my friend, another way about mine own private affairs; whiles I spend almost all the day abroad amongst other, and the residue at home among mine own: I leave to myself, I mean to my book, no time. For when I am come home, I must commen3 with my wife, chat with my

[blocks in formation]

For John Clement, my boy,* who as you know was there present with us, whom I suffer to be away from no talk wherein may be any profit or goodness (for out of this young bladed and new shot up corn, which hath already begun to spring up both in Latin and Greek learning, I look for plentiful increase at length of goodly ripe grain),—he, I say, hath brought me into a great doubt. For whereas Hythloday (unless my memory fail me) said that the bridge of Amaurote, which goeth over the river of Anyder, is five hundred paces, that is to say, half a mile in length, my John sayeth that two hundred of those paces must be plucked away, for that the river containeth there not above three hundred paces in breadth. I pray you heartily, call the matter to your remembrance. For if you agree with him, I also will say as you say, and confess myself deceived. But if you cannot remember the thing, He was a tutor in More's household.

then surely I will write as I have done and as mine own remembrance serveth me. For as I will take good heed that there be in my book nothing false, so if there be anything doubtful, i will rather tell a lie than make a lie; because I had rather be good, than wily.

Howbeit, this matter may easily be remedied if you will take the pains to ask the question of Raphael himself by word of mouth, if he be now with you, or else by your letters. Which you must needs do for another doubt also that hath chanced, through whose fault I cannot tell, whether through mine, or yours, or Raphael's. For neither we remembered to inquire of him, nor he to tell us, in what part of the new world Utopia is situate. The which thing, I had rather have spent no small sum of money than that it should thus have escaped us: as well for that I am ashamed to be ignorant in what sea that island standeth, whereof I write so long a treatise, as also because there be with us certain men, and especially one virtuous and godly man, and a professor of divinity, who is exceeding desirous to go unto Utopia; not for a vain and curious desire to see news, but to the intent he may further and increase our religion, which is there already luckily be gun. And that he may the better accomplish and perform this his good intent, he is minded to procure that he may be sent thither by the high Bishop; yea, and that he himself may be made Bishop of Utopia: being nothing scrupulous herein, that he must obtain this Bishopric with suit.5 For he counteth that a godly suit which proceedeth not of the desire of honor or lucre, but only of a godly zeal.

Wherefore I most earnestly desire you, friend Peter, to talk with Hythloday, if you can, face to face, or else to write your letters to him, and so to work in this matter that in this my book there may neither anything be found which is untrue, neither anything be lacking which is true.

And I think verily it shall be well done that you show unto him the book itself. For if I have missed or failed in any point, or if any fault have escaped me, no man can so well correct and amend it as he can: and yet that can he not do unless he peruse and read over my book written. Moreover, by this means shall you perceive whether he be well willing and content that I should undertake to put this work in writing. For if he be minded to publish and put forth his own labors and travails himself, perchance he would be loth, and so would

4 new things

5 not scrupling at all to ask for it

I also, that in publishing the Utopian weal public, I should prevent him, and take from him the flower and grace of the novelty of this his history.

Howbeit, to say the very truth, I am not yet fully determined with myself whether I will put forth my book or no. For the natures of men be so diverse, the fantasies of some so wayward, their minds so unkind, their judgments so corrupt, that they which lead a merry and a jocund life, following their own sensual pleasures and carnal lusts, may seem to be in a much better state or case than they that vex and unquiet themselves with cares and study for the putting forth and publishing of some thing that may be either profit or pleasure to others: which others nevertheless will disdainfully, scornfully, and unkindly accept the same. The most part of all be unlearned. And a great number hath learning in contempt. The rude and barbarous alloweth nothing but that which is very barbarous indeed. If it be one that hath a little smack of learning, he rejecteth as homely gear and common ware whatsoever is not stuffed full of old moth-eaten terms, and that be worn out of use. Some there be that have pleasure only in old rustic antiquities; and some only in their own doings. One is so scur, so crabbed, and so unpleasant, that he can away withs no mirth nor sport. Another is so narrow between the shoulders that he can bear no jests nor taunts. Some silly poor souls be so afeard that at every snappish word their nose shall be bitten off, that they stand in no less dread of every quick and sharp word than he that is bitten of a mad dog feareth water. Some be so mutable and wavering that every hour they be in a new mind, saying one thing sitting and another thing standing. Another sort sitteth upon their alebenches, and there among their cups they give judgment of the wits of writers, and with great authority they condemn, even as pleaseth them, every writer according to his writing, in most spiteful manner mocking, louting, and flouting them; being themselves in the mean season safe, and, as sayeth the proverb, out of all danger of gun-shot. For why, they be so smug and smooth that they have not so much as one hair of an honest man whereby one may take hold of them. There be, moreover, some so unkind and ungentle that though they take great pleasure and delectation in the work, yet, for all that, they cannot find in their hearts to love the author thereof, nor to afford him a

[blocks in formation]

good word: being much like uncourteous, un-gether with a swift tide. When the sea flowthankful, and churlish guests, which, when they eth in, for the length of thirty miles it filletk have with good and dainty meats well filled all the Anyder with salt water, and driveth their bellies, depart home, giving no thanks to back the fresh water of the river. And the feast-maker. Go your ways now, and make somewhat further it changeth the sweetness of a costly feast at your own charges for guests the fresh water with saltness. But a little so dainty-mouthed, so divers in taste, and be- beyond that the river waxeth sweet, and runsides that of so unkind and unthankful natures. neth forby13 the city fresh and pleasant. And But nevertheless, friend Peter, do, I pray when the sea ebbeth and goeth back again, the you, with Hythloday as I willed you before. fresh water followeth it almost even to the And as for this matter, I shall be at my liberty very fall into the sea. There goeth a bridge afterwards to take new advisement. Howbeit. over the river made not of piles or of timber, seeing I have taken great pains and labor in but of stonework, with gorgeous and substanwriting the matter, if it may stand with his tial arches at that part of the city that is mind and pleasure, I will, as touching the edi- farthest from the sea; to the intent that ships tion or publishing of the book, follow the may pass along forby all the side of the city counsel and advice of my friends, and specially without let. yours. Thus fare you well, right heartily beloved friend Peter, with your gentle wife: and love me as you have ever done, for I love you better than ever I did.

They have also another river, which indeed is not very great. But it runneth gently and pleasantly. For it riseth even out of the same hill that the city standeth upon, and runneth down a slope through the midst of the city into

OF THE CITIES, AND NAMELY OF AMAUROTE. 10 Anyder. And because it riseth a little without


As for their cities, whoso knoweth one of them, knoweth them all: they be all so like one to another, as farforth as the nature of the place permitteth. I will describe therefore to you one or other of them, for it skilleth11 not greatly which; but which rather than Amaurote? Of them all this is the worthiest and of most dignity. For the residue 'knowledge it for the head city, because there is the Councilhouse. Nor to me any of them all is better beloved, as wherein I lived five whole years together.

The city of Amaurote standeth upon the side of a low hill, in fashion almost four square. For the breadth of it beginneth a little beneath the top of the hill, and still continueth by the space of two miles, until it come to the river of Anyder.12 The length of it, which lieth by the river's side, is somewhat


The river of Anyder riseth four and twenty miles above Amaurote out of a little spring. But being increased by other small rivers and brooks that run into it, and, among other, two somewhat big ones, before the city it is half a mile broad, and farther, broader. And forty miles beyond the city it falleth into the ocean sea. By all that space that lieth between the sea and the city, and certain miles also above the city, the water ebbeth and floweth six hours to

10 The name means "dark, unknown."
11 matters
12 i. e., waterless

the city, the Amaurotians have enclosed the head spring of it with strong fences and bulwarks, and so have joined it to the city. This is done to the intent that the water should not be stopped, nor turned away, or poisoned, if their enemies should chance to come upon them. From thence the water is derived and conveyed down in canals of brick divers ways into the lower parts of the city. Where that cannot be done, by reason that the place will not suffer it, there they gather the rain-water in great cisterns, which doth them as good service.

The city is compassed about with a high and thick stone wall full of turrets and bulwarks. A dry ditch, but deep, and broad, and overgrown with bushes, briers, and thorns, goeth about three sides or quarters of the city. To the fourth side the river itself serveth for a ditch.

The streets be appointed14 and set forth very commodious and handsome, both for carriage,15 and also against the winds. The houses be of fair and gorgeous building, and on the street side they stand joined together in a long row through the whole street without any partition or separation. The streets be twenty foot broad.* On the back side of the houses, through the whole length of the street, lie large gardens, inclosed round about with the back part of the streets. Every house hath

13 past (German vorbei) 15 transportation
14 arranged
*To More this width seemed generous. Some of
the busiest streets of London were, until a
recent date, scarcely wider.


two doors, one into the street, and a postern | modities. For by this means more light comdoor on the back side into the garden. These eth in, and the wind is better kept out.f doors be made with two leaves, never locked nor bolted, so easy to be opened that they will follow the least drawing of a finger, and shut again alone. Whoso will, may go in, for there is nothing within the houses that is private, or any man's own. And every tenth year they change their houses by lot.

They set great store by their gardens. In them they have vineyards, all manner of fruit, herbs, and flowers, so pleasant, so well furnished, and so finely kept, that I never saw thing more fruitful, nor better trimmed in any place. Their study and diligence herein cometh not only of pleasure, but also of a certain strife and contention that is between street and street, concerning the trimming, husbanding, and furnishing of their gardens-every man for his own part. And verily you shall not lightly find in all the city anything that is more commodious, either for the profit of the citizens, or for pleasure. And therefore it may seem that the first founder of the city minded nothing so much as these gardens.

For they say that king Utopus himself, even at the first beginning, appointed and drew forth the platform16 of the city into this fashion and figure that it hath now, but the gallant garnishing, and the beautiful setting forth of it, whereunto he saw that one man's age would not suffice, that he left to his posterity. For their chronicles, which they keep written with all diligent circumspection, containing the history of one thousand seven hundred and sixty years, even from the first conquest of the island, record and witness that the houses in the beginning were very low, and, like homely cottages or poor shepherd houses, made at all adventures17 of every rude piece of timber that came first to hand, with mud walls, and ridged roofs, thatched over with straw. But now the houses be curiously builded after a gorgeous and gallant sort, with three stories one over another. The outsides of the walls be made either of hard flint, or of plaster, or else of brick, and the inner sides be well strengthened with timber-work. The roofs be plain and flat, covered with a certain kind of plaster that is of no cost, and yet so tempered that no fire can hurt or perish it, and withstandeth the violence of the weather better than any lead. They keep the wind out of their windows with glass, for it is there much used, and somewhere also with fine linen cloth dipped in oil or amber, and that for two com16 ground-plan 17 haphazard

Husbandry is a science common to them all in general, both men and women, wherein they be all expert and cunning. In this they be all instructed even from their youth, partly in their schools with traditions and precepts, and partly in the country nigh the city, brought up18 as it were in playing, not only beholding the use of it, but, by occasion of exercising their bodies, practicing it also. Besides husbandry, which (as I said) is common to them all, every one of them learneth one or other several19 and particular science as his own proper craft. That is most commonly either cloth-working in wool or flax, or masonry, or the smith's craft, or the carpenter's science. For there is none other occupation that any number to speak of doth use there.

For the

For20 their garments, which throughout all the island be of one fashion (saving that there is a difference between the man's garment and the woman's, between the married and the unmarried), and this one continueth for ever more unchanged, seemly and comely to the eye, no let to the moving and wielding of the body, also fit both for winter and summer,-as for these garments (I say), every family maketh their own. But of the other aforesaid crafts every man learneth one. And not only the men, but also the women. But the women, as the weaker sort, be put to the easier crafts, as to work wool and flax. The more laborsome sciences be committed to the men. most part every man is brought up in his father's craft. For most commonly they be naturally thereto bent and inclined. But if a man's mind stand to any other, he is by adoption put into a family of that occupation which he doth most fantasy. Whom not only his father, but also the magistrates do diligently look to, that he be put to a discreet and an honest householder. Yea, and if any person, when he hath learned one craft, be desirous to learn also another, he is likewise suffered and permitted. When he hath learned both, he occupieth whether he will,21 unless the city have more need of the one than of the other. 18 The Latin reads educti and should have been translated "led out."

[blocks in formation]

trate their purposes; and finally by what sleight or means the one getteth the victory.

The chief and almost the only office of the | stealeth away another. The other is wherein Syphogrants is to see and take heed that no Vices fight with Virtues, as it were in battle man sit idle, but that every one apply his own array, or a set field. In the which game is craft with earnest diligence; and yet for all very properly showed, both the strife and disthat, not to be wearied from early in the morn- cord that vices have among themselves, and ing to late in the evening with continual work, again their unity and concord against virtues; like laboring and toiling beasts. For this is and also what vices be repugnant to what virworse than the miserable and wretched condi- tues-with what power and strength they astion of bondmen. Which nevertheless is almost sail them openly, by what wiles and subtlety everywhere the life of workmen and artificers, they assault them secretly; with what help and saving in Utopia. For they, dividing the day aid the virtues resist and overcome the puisand the night into twenty-four just hours, ap-sance of the vices; by what craft they fruspoint and assign only six of those hours to work, three before noon, upon the which they go straight to dinner; and after dinner, when they have rested two hours, then they work three hours, and upon that they go to supper.§ About eight of the clock in the evening (counting one of the clock at the first hour after noon), they go to bed: eight hours they give to sleep. All the void time that is between the hours of work, sleep, and meat, that they be suffered to bestow, every man as he liketh best himself. Not to th' intent that they should misspend this time in riot or slothfulness, but, being then licensed22 from the labor of their own occupations, to bestow the time well and thriftily upon some other science, as shall please them. For it is a solemn custom there to have lectures daily early in the morning, where to be present they only be constrained that be namely chosen and appointed to learning. Howbeit, a great multitude of every sort of people, both men and women, go to hear lectures, some one, and some another, as every man's nature is inclined. Yet, this notwithstanding, if any man had rather bestow this time upon his own occupation (as it chanceth in many whose minds rise not in the contemplation of any science liberal), he is not letted nor prohibited, but is also23 praised and commended, as profitable to the commonwealth.

[blocks in formation]

But here, lest you be deceived, one thing you must look more narrowly24 upon. For seeing they bestow but six hours in work, perchance you may think that the lack of some necessary things hereof may ensue. But this is nothing so. For that small time is not only enough, but also too much, for the store and abundance of all things that be requisite either for the necessity or commodity of life. The which thing you also shall perceive if you weigh and consider with yourselves how great a part of the people in other countries liveth idle. First, almost all women, which be the half of the whole number: or else if the women be somewhere occupied, there most commonly in their stead the men be idle. Besides this, how great and how idle a company is there of priests, and religious men25, as they call them. Put thereto all rich men, specially all landed men, which commonly be called gentlemen and noblemen. Take into this number also their servants; I mean all that flock of stout, bragging rush-bucklers.26 Join to them also sturdy and valiant beggars, cloaking their idle life under the color of some disease or sickness. And truly you shall find them27 much fewer than you thought, by whose labor all these things are wrought that in men's affairs are now daily used and frequented.

Now consider with yourself, of these few that do work, how few be occupied in necessary works. For where money beareth all the swing, there many vain and superfluous occupations must needs be used to serve only for riotous superfluity and unhonest pleasure. For the same multitude that now is occupied in work, if they were divided into so few occupations as the necessary use of nature requireth, in so great plenty of things as then of necessity would ensue, doubtless the prices would be 24 closely

26 swashbucklers
25 men attached to some 27 those

monks, etc.

« PředchozíPokračovat »