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Part II Preface: the Answer to Objection II

From John Bunyan's classic The Pilgrim's Progress, Part II Preface.

Answer to Objection II

Fright not thyself, my Book, for such bugbears
Are nothing else but groundless fears.
My Pilgrim's book has travelled sea and land,
Yet could I never come to understand
That it was slighted or turned out of door
By any Kingdom, were they rich or poor.

In France and Flanders, where men kill each other,
My Pilgrim is esteemed a friend, a brother.

In Holland, too, 'tis said, as I am told,
My Pilgrim is with some, worth more than gold.

Highlanders and wild Irish can agree
My Pilgrim should familiar with them be.

'Tis in New England under such advance,
Receives there so much loving countenance,
As to be trimm'd, newcloth'd, and deck'd with gems,
That it might show its features, and its limbs.
Yet more: so comely doth my Pilgrim walk,
That of him thousands daily sing and talk.

If you draw nearer home, it will appear
My Pilgrim knows no ground of shame or fear:
City and country will him entertain,
With Welcome, Pilgrim; yea, they can't refrain
From smiling, if my Pilgrim be but by,
Or shows his head in any company.

Brave gallants do my Pilgrim hug and love,
Esteem it much, yea, value it above
Things of greater bulk; yea, with delight
Say, my lark's leg is better than a kite.

Young ladies, and young gentlewomen too,
Do not small kindness to my Pilgrim show;
Their cabinets, their bosoms, and their hearts,
My Pilgrim has; 'cause he to them imparts
His pretty riddles in such wholsome strains,
As yield them profit double to their pains
Of reading; yea, I think I may be bold
To say some prize him far above their gold.

The very children that do walk the street,
If they do but my holy Pilgrim meet,
Salute him will; will wish him well, and say,
He is the only stripling of the day.

They that have never seen him, yet admire
What they have heard of him, and much desire
To have his company, and hear him tell
Those Pilgrim stories which he knows so well.

Yea, some that did not love him at first,
But call'd him fool and noddy, say they must,
Now they have seen and heard him, him commend
And to those whom they love they do him send.

Wherefore, my Second Part, thou need'st not be
Afraid to show thy head: none can hurt thee,
That wish but well to him that went before;
'Cause thou com'st after with a second store
Of things as good, as rich, as profitable,
For young, for old, for stagg'ring, and for stable.

Objection III


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