The Roast-meat Seller
At Paris, in the Roast-meat Cookery of the Petit Chastelet, before the cook-shop of one of the roast-meat sellers of that lane, a certain hungry porter was eating his bread, after he had by parcels kept it awhile above the reek and steam of a fat goose on the spit, turning at a great fire, and found it so besmoaked with the vapor, to be savory; which the Cook observing, took no notice, till after having ravined his Penny Loaf, whereof no Morsel has been unsmoakified, he was about discamping and going away; but by your leave, as the Fellow thought to have departed thence shot-free, the Master-Cook laid hold upon him by the Gorget, demanded payment for the smoak of his roast- meat.
The Porter answered, that he had sustained no loss at all; that by what he had done there was no diminution made of the flesh, that he had taken nothing of his, and that therefore he was not indebted to him in anything: As for the smoak in question, that, although he had not been there, it would howsoever have been evaporated: Besides that, before that time it had never been seen nor heard, that roast- meat smoak was sold upon the streets of Paris.
The Cook hereto replied, That he was not obliged nor any way bound to feed and nourish for nought a Porter whom he had never seen before with the smoak of his roast-meat; and thereupon swore, that if he would not forthwith content and satisfie him with present payment for the repast which he had thereby got, that he would take his crooked staves from off his back; which instead of having loads thereafter laid upon them, should serve for fuel to his kitchen fires. Whilst he was going about so to do, and to have pulled them to him by one of the bottom rungs, which he had caught in his hand, the sturdy Porter got out of his gripes, drew forth the knotty cudgel, and stood to his own defence.
The altercation waxed hot in words, which moved the gaping hoydens of the sottish Parisians to run from all parts thereabouts to see what the issue would be of that babling strife and contention. In the interim of this dispute, to very good purpose, Seiny Jhon the Fool and Citizen of Paris, hapen- ed to be there, whom the Cook perceiving, said to the Porter, Wilt thou refer and submit unto the noble Seiny Jhon, the decision of the difference and controversie which is-betwixt us?