Page:Elizabethan People.djvu/79

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51
COUNTRY LIFE AND CHARACTER

and afterwards shall be set before the cross. Also, all the brethren of the guild are bound to follow the body to the church, and to pray for his soul until his body is buried. And whoever does not fulfil this shall pay one halfpenny.

"It is also ordained by the brethren and sisters, that if any poor man in the town dies, or if any stranger has not means of his own out of which to pay for a light to be kept burning before his body, the brethren and sisters shall, for their souls' health, whosoever he may be, find four wax candles, and one sheet, and a hearsecloth to lay over the coffin till the body is buried.

"It is further ordained by the brethren and sisters, that each of them shall give twopence a year, at a meeting that shall be held once a year; namely, at a feast that shall be held in Easter week, in such manner that brotherly love shall be cherished among them, and evil speaking be driven out; that peace shall always dwell among them, and true love be upheld. And every sister of the guild shall bring with her to this feast a great tankard; and all the tankards shall be filled with ale; and afterwards the ale shall be given to the poor. So likewise shall the brethren do; and their tankards shall in like manner be filled with ale, and this shall also be given to the poor. But, before that ale shall be given to the poor, and be-