Libel Summons——–

IN Truth and Honour's name—Amen--------
Know all men by these Presents plain:------

This fourth o' June, at Mauchline given,
The year 'tween eighty-five and seven,
We, Fornicators by profession,
As per extractum from each Session,
In way and manner here narrated,
Pro bono Amor congregated;
And by our brethren constituted
A COURT of EQUITY deputed.
With special authoris’d direction
To take within our strict protection,
The stays-out-bursting, quondam maiden,
With GROWING LIFE and anguish laden;
Who by the rascal is deny’d,
That led her thoughtless steps aside.--------
He who disowns the ruin’d Fair one,
And for her wants and woes does care none;
The wretch who can refuse subsistence,
To those whom he has given existence;
He who when at a lass’s by-job,
Defrauds her wi' a frig or dry-bob;
The coof that stands on clishmaclavers
When women haflins offer favors:----
The knave who takes a private stroke,
Beneath his sanctimonious cloke;
All who in any way or manner
Distain the Fornicator's honor,
We take cognisance thereanent,
The proper Judges competent.--------

FIRST, POET BURNS he takes the chair;
Allow'd by a' his title 's fair;
And pass’d nem. con. without dissension,
He has a DUPLICATE pretension.--------
Next, Merchant SMITH, our worthy FISCAL,
To cow each pertinacious rascal,
In this, as every other state,
His merit is conspicuous great:
RICHMOND the third, our trusty CLERK,
The minutes regular to mark,
And sit dispenser of the law,
In absence of the former twa;
And fourth, our MESSENGER AT ARMS,
When failing all the milder terms,
HUNTER, a hearty, willing brither,
Weel skilled in dead and living leather.------
Without PREAMBLE, less or more said,
We, body politic aforesaid,
With legal, due WHEREAS, and WHEREFORE
We are appointed here to care for,
The interests of our constituents,
And punish contravening truants,
Keeping a proper regulation
Within the lists of FORNICATION.--------

WHEREAS our FISCAL, by petition,
Informs us there is strong suspicion,
You, Coachman DOW and Clockie BROWN,
Baith residenters in this town;
In other words, you, JOCK and SANDY,
Hae been at wark at HOUGHMAGANDIE;
And now when facts are come to light,
The matter ye deny outright.--------

FIRST, YOU, JOHN BROWN, there 's witness borne,
And affidavit made and sworn,
That ye hae bred a hurly-burly,
‘Bout JEANY MITCHEL's tirlie-whirlie,
And blooster’d at her regulator,
Till a' her wheels gang clitter-clatter.--------
And farther still, you cruel Vandal,
A tale might even in hell be scandal!
That ye hae made repeated trials
Wi' drugs and draps in doctor’s phials,
Mixt, as ye thought, wi fell infusion,
Your ain begotten wean to poosion.--
And yet ye are sae scant o' grace,
As daur to lift your brazen face,
And offer for to take your aith,
Ye never lifted JEANY's claith.--------
But tho’ ye should yoursel manswear,
Laird Wilson's sclates can witness bear,
Ae e’ening of a MAUCHLINE fair,
That JEANY's masts they saw them bare;
And ye had furl’d up her sails,
And was at play------at heads and tails.------

NEXT, SANDY DOW, you’re here indicted
To have, as publickly you’re wyted,
Been clandestinely upward whirlin
The petticoats o' MAGGY BORELAN,
And giein her canister a rattle,
That months to come it winna settle.------
And yet, ye offer to still protest,
Ye never herried MAGGY's nest;
Tho' it’s weel ken'd that at her gyvel
Ye hae gien mony a kytch anf kyvel.--

THEN, BROWN AND DOW, above design’d,
For clags and clauses there subjoin’d,
WE, Court aforesaid, cite and summon,
That on the fifth o' July comin',
The hour o' cause, in our Court-ha',
The Whitefoord’s Arms, ye answer LAW!
Exculpate proof ye needna bring,
For we 're resolved about the thing

[But, as reluctantly we PUNISH,
An’ rather, mildly would admonish,
Since Better PUNISHMENT prevented,
Than OBSTINACY sair repented.

You have the honor to partake;
An’ for that NOBLE BADGE you wear,
You, SANDIE DOW, our BROTHER dear,
We give you as a MAN and MASON,
This private, sober, friendly lesson.

YOUR CRIME, a manly deed we view it,
As MAN ALONE, can only do it;
And he's nae man that won't avow it;
Therefore, confess, and join our core,
And keep reproach outside the door.
But, in denial persevering,
Is to a SCOUNDREL'S NAME adhering.
The BEST O' MEN, hae been surpris’d;
The BEST O’ WOMEN been advis’d:
Kings hae been proud our name to own
The brightest jewel in their crown;
The rhyming sons o' bleak Parnassus,
Were ay red-wud about the lasses,
And saul and body, all would venture,
Rejoicing in our lists to enter,
E'en (wha wad trow't?) the cleric order,
Aft slyly break the hallow’d border,
And show in kittle time and place
They are as scant o' boasted grace,
As ony o' the human race.
The Brother DOW, if you’re asham’d
In such a QUORUM to be nam’d,
See, ev’n HIMSEL—there 's GODLY BRYAN,
The auld WHATRECK he has been tryin;
When such as he put tae their han',
What man on CHARACTER need stan'?
The Brother dear, lift up your brow,
And, like yoursel, the TRUTH avow;
Erect a duntless face upon it,
An’ say, “I am the mas has done it;
An 's fit to do as much again.”
Ne'er mind their solemn reverend faces,
Had they in proper times an’ places,
But SEEN AN’ FUN'—I mukle dread it,
They just would dune as you an’ WE did.
To TELL THE TRUTH 's a manly lesson,
An' doubly proper in a MASON.

YOU MONSIEUR BROWN, as it is proven,
JEAN MITCHEL’s wame by you was hoven;
For you, Jock Brown, sae black your fau't is,
Sae doubly dyed—we gi'e you notice,
Without you by a quick repentance,
Acknowledge Jean's and your acquaintance,
Depend on ‘t, this shall be your sentence.—
Our beadles to the Cross shall take you,
And there shall mither naked make you,
Some cannie grip near by your middle,
They shall it bind as tight 's a fiddle;
The raep they round the PUMP shall tak
An’ tye your han's behint your back;
Wi' just an ell o' string allow’d
To jink and hide you frae the croud,
There shall ye stan’, a legal seizure,
In during Jeanie Mitchel's pleasure;
Sae be, her pleasure dinna pass
Seven turnings of a half-hour glass:
Nor shall it in her pleasure be
To louse you out in less than THREE.

THIS, our futurum esse DECREET,
We mean not to be kept a secret,
But in our SUMMONS here insert it,
And whoso dares, may controvert it. ]

THIS, mark’d before the date and place is,

This Summons and the signet mark,

At MAUCHLINE, idem date of June,
'Tween six and seven, the afternoon,
You twa, in propria personae,
Within design’d, SANDY and JOHNY,
This SUMMONS legally have got,
As vide witness underwrote:
Within the house of JOHN DOW, vintner.