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AS I was considering with myself, what I had written concerning the progress of the Pilgrim from this world to glory; and how it had been acceptable to many in this nation; it came again into my mind to write, as then, of him that was going to heaven, so now of the life and death of the ungodly, and of their travel from this world to hell. The which in this I have done, and have put it, as thou seest, under the name and title of Mr Badman, a name very proper for such a subject: I have also put it in the'form of a dialogue, that I might, with more ease to myself, and pleasure to the reader, perform the work.
And although, as I said, I have put it forth in this method, yet have I as little as may be, gone out of the road of mine own observation of things. Yea, I think I may truly say, that to the best of my remembrance, all the things that here I discourse of, I mean as to matter of fact, have been acted upon the stage of this world, even many times before mine eyes.
Here therefore, courteous reader, I present thee with the life and death of Mr Badman indeed; Yea, I do trace him in his life, from his childhood to his death; that thou mayst, as in a glass, behold with thine own eyes, the A
steps that take hold of hell; and also discern,
while thou art reading of Mr Badman's death,
whether thou thyself art treading in his path
And let me intreat thee to forbear quirking and mocking, for that Mr Badman is dead; but rather gravely inquire concerning thyself by the word, whether thou art one of his lineage or no: For Mr Badman has left many of his relations behind him: yea, the very world is overspread with his kindred. True, some of his relations, as he, are gone to their place, and long home, but thousands of thousands are left behind; as brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews, besides innumerable of his friends and associates.
I may say, and yet speak nothing but too much truth in so saying, that there is scarce a fellowship, a community, or fraternity of men in the world, but some of Mr Badman's relations are there : Yea, rarely can we find a family or household in a town, where he has not left behind him a brother, nephew or friend.
The butt therefore, that at this time I shoot at, is wide: and it will be as impossible for this book to go into several families, and not to arrest some, as for the king's messenger to rush into an house full of traitors, and find none but honest men there.
I cannot but think, that this shot will light upon many, since our fields are so full of this gumej hut how many it will kill to Mr Badman's course, and make alive to the Pilgrim's progress, that is not in me to determine; this secret is with the Lord our God only, and he alone knows to whom he will bless it to so good and so blessed an end. However, I have put fire to the pan, and doubt not but the report will quickly be heard.
I told you before, that Mr Badman had left many of his friends and relations behind him, but if I survive them (as that's a great question to me,) I may also write of their lives: however, whether my life be longer or shorter, this is my prayer at present, that God will stir up witnesses against them, that may either convert or confound them; for whereever they live, and roll in their wickedness, they are the pest and plague of that country.
England shakes and totters already, by reason of the burden that Mr Badman and his friends have wickedly laid upon it: yea, our earth reels and staggereth to and fro, like a drunkard, the transgression thereof is heavy upon it.
Courteous Reader, I will treat thee now even at the door and threshold of this house, but only with this intelligence, that Mr Badman lies dead within. Be pleased therefore, (if thy leisure will serve thee,) to enter in, and behold the state in which he is laid, betwixt his death-bed and the grave. He is not buried as yet, nor doth he stink, as is designed he shall, before he lies down in oblivion.
Now as others have had their funerals solemnized, according to their greatness and grandeur in the world, so likewise Mr Badman, (forasmuch as he deserveth not to go down to his grave in silence,) as his funeral State according to his deserts.
Four things are usual at great men's funerals, which we will take leave, and I hope without offence, to allude to in the funeral of Mr Badman.
First, They are sometimes, when dead, presented to their friends, by their completely wrought images, as lively as by cunning men's hands they can be; that the remembrance of them may be renewed to their survivors, the remembrance of them and their deeds: And this I have endeavoured to answer in my discourse of Mr Badman; and therefore I have drawn him forth in his features and actions from his childhood to his grey hairs. Here, therefore, thou hast him lively set forth as in cuts; both as to the minority, flower, and seniority of his age, together with those actions of his life that he was most capable of doing in, and under those present circumstances of time, place, strengths and the opportunities that did attend them in these.
Secondly, there is also usual at great men's funerals, those badges and escutcheons of their honour, that they have received from their ancestors, or have been thought worthy of for the deeds and exploits they have done ill their life: And here Mr Badmanhas his, but such as vary from all men of worth, but so much the more agreeing with the merit of his doings: They all have descended in state, he only as an abominable branch. His deserts are the deserts of sin; and therefore the escutcheons of honour that he has, are only that he died without honour, and at his end became a fool. Thou shalt not be joined with them in burial.—The seed of evil doers shall never be renowned.
The funeral pomp therefore of MrBadman is to wear upon his hearse the badges of a dishonourable and wicked life; since his bones are full of the sins of his youth, which shall lie down, as Job says, in the dust with him: nor is it fit that any should be his attendants, now at his death, but such as with him conspired against their own souls in their life; persons whose transgressions have made them infamous to all that have, or shall know what they have done.
Some notice therefore I have also here in this little discourse given the reader, of them who were his confederates in his life, and attendants at his death; with a hint, either of some high villainy committed by them, as also of those judgments that have overtaken and fallen upon them from the just and revenging hand of God. All which are things either fully known by me, as being eye and ear-witness thereto, or that I have received from such hands, whose relation as to this, I