Page:The Palace of Pleasure, Volume 1 (1890).djvu/181

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79
C. FABRITIUS.

demaunde rewarde of vs, if secretely he did kill thee: whiche we vtterlye denied, and required him for that fact, to loke for no reward at our hands. Whereupon wee thought good to giue thee aduertisement hereof, left if any such thing did chaunce, the cities should not thincke that we were priuie to the fact: for wee delite not to fight with giftes, rewards and treason. Thou in the meane time, except thou take heede, art like to die: Farewel." This was the aunciente order amonges the Romaines, that neuer were pleased by the cowardly ouerthrow of other, to winne fame and glorye. And becaufe I rede an other excellente historie of the fame Fabritius, I haue thought good to adde the same to this Nouell. When peace was concluded, betwene the Romaines and the Samnites, the Ambassadours of the Samnites repaired vppon a time to this Fabritius, who after they had remembred vnto him diuers and fundrie thinges, frendlye done in their behalfe, they offered vnto him for reward, a great summe of money, intreating him to receiue the fame: which the Samnites did (as the report was) because they sawe, that he wanted many thinges, for the furniture of his house and maintenaunce, thinking the fame also not to be sufficiently decente for his estate and calling: which Fabritius perceyuing, with his bare handes, hee touched his eares and eyes, and then strooked his face downeward, his noase, his mouth and throate, and the rest of his bodie, to the bottome of his bealie, answearing the Ambasadours in this wife. "That whiles hee was able to rule and gouerne all those members which he touched, he was sure to lacke nothing: wherefore (quoth he) thefe members, which be profitable and necessarye for my vse, will not suffer mee to receiue this moneye, whereof they knowe I haue no neede." Hereby reprehending the foolish indeuour of thefe Samnites, in offring to him a bribe, which hee was neur accustomed to take for any cause, what foeuer he accompliflied. Who stil shewed himselfe a man sincere and incorrupt.