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The Knaviſh MERCHANT (Now turn'd Warehouſeman) CHARACTARIZED OR A ſevere Scourge, for an unjuſt, cruel, and unconſcionable Adverſary

By Philadelphus Verax a Cordial friend to his honeſt (though injuriouſly oppreſſed) acquaintance Thomas Crocker Merchant.

17. 2 Sam. 23.

Now when Achitophel ſaw his Counſel was not followed [took not effect] he ſadled his Aſſe, and aroſe and went home into his City, and ſet his houſehold in order, and hanged himſelf.

Foelix quem faciunt aliena paricula cautum.
Printed The ſecond month of the next year
That Tyrants ceaſ't to domineer.

The Knaviſh MERCHANT (now turn'd Warehouſeman) CHARACTARIZEDThe Caſe,

TH' Accroſtick of theſe lines, if you read out,
In them to find a knave, you need not doubt.
Repute and liberty while I injoy'd.
I met a knave at laſt who both deſtroy'd
Cheated me of the one, the other blaſted;
Heap't wrongs upon me whilſt my patience laſted.
At length I did reſolve for to oppoſe,
Right againſt wrong, and all his prancks diſcloſe,
Deceiptfull Villian! had I been aware,
No feigned friendſhip ſhould have been my ſnare.
Ever here after let all men take heed,
Avoid him if they do intend to ſpeed.
Varlets diſcover'd make a wiſe man wary
Even fooles prove fearful when they once miſcarry.

In Anno 1655 Iohn Crocker Engliſh Merchant in Cadiz did by Bill of Lading (which is recited verbatim in the laſt page) con­ſigne unto his brother Thomas Crocker Merchant (amongſt other goods) 19 pieces of Sherry Sack; all for his own proper accompt, the which by their accompt of ſales amounted unto neate 101. l. 1s. 6d. ſterling which in conformity to the ſaid Iohn's order was accordingly diſpoſed of.


But ſo it is, that one Richard Neave (a pretended Signee, unto Andrew Beaſley a runnagate Roman Catholick) (through knaviſh ignorance) did about five years laſt paſt pretend an intereſt in the aforeſaid Wines, and for them commened a ſuite in the Court of Admiralty againſt one Iames Marſhal of Exeter, the Aſſigne of the ſaid Thomas; in which ſuite the ſaid Neave durſt not proceed to Triall as the Proctor Mr. Cheeke doth poſſitively affirme.

Notwithſtanding which the ſaid Neave (with whom the ſaid Thomas Crocker nver had the leaſt dealing) did about November laſt, cauſe the ſaid Thomas to be Arreſted upon an action of the Caſe for three hundred Pounds: unto which the ſaid Thomas Crocker then procured Baile, which the ſaid Neave perceiving be­fore the acceptance of Baile then tendred (whereby to hinder him of being Bailed, he being a ſtranger in London) malitiouſly and on ſet purpoſe to procure his mine, cauſed to be entered in ſeveral Perſons Names (unknown to the ſaid Thomas Crocker) ſeveral Actions amounting to the value of about 6000. l. (a thing too too commonly practiſed in and about London to the horrid ſhame of the Government thereof) by which meanes many Merchants of repute, and divers others (eſpecially thoſe of meaner capaci­ties) have been ruined and utterly undone, as to expectation of all future preferments. As is ſufficiently apparent in this Gentlemans (Tho. Crockers) caſe, who was moſt diſgracefully Arreſted & taken off the publick Exchange, & thrown into the Loathſome Counter from whence with great expence of Money; he removed himſelf by Habeas Corpus to the Fleet, where he ſtill remaines Priſoner.

But the ſaid Neave perceiving the intent of the ſaid Thomas Crocker to remove himſelf (having had ſome notice of the ſame, and minding nothing but perverſe miſchief) went about to hinder his removal, to which end he would have entred an Action againſt the ſaid Thomas in the Lord Maiors Court to have it charged at the Counter, which he knew very well would not only put the ſaid Crocker to a longer ſtay in that Priſon, but alſo a great deale more extradorinary expence of Money, but the cauſes being returned, and the body gone, before he could effect this deſign he miſt his aime. Such diabolical and Deviliſh practi­ces5 (as I am credibly informed) are uſual with the Citizens of London which the very Turks and Infidels would abhorr, and puniſh with no leſs then death.

That by reaſon of ſuch and ſo many great Actions no friends will become engaged for him, ſo that in the Fleet he is inforced to remaine cloſe Priſoner, even ſo may the moſt innocent ſuffer (if they want freinds) and if ſuch abominable Cheats be tollerated (for ſo they are not being puniſhed) more Families will hereafter be deſtroied (as too many already have by ſuch practices) then did the late Warr conſume.

Whether to ruin the ſaid Thomas Crocker by this means or not, was the intent of the ſaid Neave, is out of Queſtion, or whether the ſaid Neave did this not only upon that ſcore, but alſo in diſ­obedience to his Majeſties gratious pleaſure is a Queſtion. That Neave could not be ignorant of what preferment Mr. Crocker was likely to have, by the guift of his Royal grace the Duke of Yorke, is the Queſtion. Which Queſtion laſt propoſed he could not but know, and in knowing that, he knowes that Mr. Crocker loſt not only an honourable but profitable emploiment, in his Majeſties ſervice beyond the Seas.

Now that the world may take notice of the honeſt intention of the ſaid Thomas Crocker, and that they may ſee the damnable abſurdity of the ſaid Neave, let them obſerve this one thing, (viz.) that the ſaid Thomas Crocker, knowing the juſtneſs of his cauſe, not onely at the time of his firſt being arreſted, but many times ſince his being impriſoned, hath offered to come to an Ar­bitration, have all differences referred betwixt them, offering ſe­curity to ſtand to the Award of ſuch Arbitrators, as ſhall indiffe­rently be elected and choſen, one or two of each part. But the ſaid Neave being a croſſe baſe and ill condition'd fellow, refuſes this propoſition, and contrary to his promiſe to Sir Iohn Colleton Knight and Barronet, will not refer the differences aforeſaid. But now as formerly he gives only this for anſwer, that he will de­clare, &c. If ſuch be the lawes and practiſes of the Londoners, God ſend me to live amongſt Indians, Turks and Iews.

For prevention of ſuch helliſh practiſes, it were to be wiſhed,6 that there were a Court Merchant erected in England, as is uſual in other Countries where Trade is moſt encouraged, (which I hear for many years paſt in former Parliaments hath been en­deavoured, but hindred eſpecially by the Lawyers) ſuch Villanies would not be practiſed. But to corrupt offices and officers, this will be but falſe doctrine becauſe it will hinder the helliſh griſt com­ing to their Mill. This practiſe for the ſake of particular gaine hath been too long uſed, and thoſe that are concerned will cry up their Diana, old cuſtomes though never ſo wicked, for which deteſtible practices (if not ſpeedyly remedied by authority) God will certain­ly viſiet, who hath threatned that for three Tranſgreſſions and for four, he would not turne away the puniſhment of Moab, becauſe they ſold the needy for ſilver, and the poor for a paire of ſhooes; and the practiſe of our times neerly reſembling their Cruelty, (whoſe puniſhment is threatned in the ſame Chapter) who inhumanly burnt the bones of their Bretheren into lime.

But to returne to Neave, leaſt (that for two or three Termes) the malicious cuſtom he forget, I hope this ſhort caution will mind him which might have been ſweld into a larger volume with a particular liſt of his knaveries, and that it will prove a ſufficient admonition to all ſuch who heretofore have dealt with the ſaid Neave, how hereafter they truſt him, or keepe company with him. Nor do I doubt but in ſhort time to ſee his knavery ſo farr de­tected, by all men, that they will avoid his & kick him (and all that are of his Religion) out of their company. And that every one may be forwarn'd, and ſo forearm'd, the knaves lodging is at pre­ſent in St. Thomas Appoſtles, though without queſtion ſuch deal­ings as theſe, will ſhortly reduce him (when every bird hath his own feathers) to the retired life of a cloſe Priſoner, or to a more wandring life of a Fugitive Vagabond.

Thus much a Cordial freind to the greatly wronged and oppreſ­ſed (Thomas Crocker) in his vindication thought good to com­mit to publick view, that the World may ſee the Villanous ma­lice of his unjuſt Adverſary (I had almoſt ſaid unparallel'd, but that as it is ſaid before, it is too common in London to meet with ſuch practiſes) againſt whom he queſtions not but to recover7 good damages at law, and to have his caſe become a preſident of unjuſt oppreſſion at the ſitting of the next Parliament, in hopes that the remedy will not there prove worſe then the diſeaſe, as hath been uſual in moſt of the late Parliaments, who like God­fathers and Godmothers (at their firſt ſitting) uſed to promiſe much, but in conluſion performed little or nothing to the verifi­ng of the old Engliſh proverb, whilſt the graſs growes the Horſe ſtarves.

Let Neave therefore for the preſent take this in part of pay­ment, for his inhumane, unatural, unchriſtian, unconſcionable, unjuſt, incharitable and unmerchantlike proceedings. Which ſeven rare imperfections and qualifications, like the ſeven Planets, have a continual motion in, and reign over him which being va­lued each of them at 1000. l. may and no otherwiſe will make up the pretended ſumes againſt Crecker, with a compleate knave to boote, from whom, and ſuch as he is, Good Lord deliver every honeſt man.


SHipped by the Grace of God in good order, and well conditioned, by me John Crocker, in and upon the good Ship called the For­tune of Topſam, whereof is Mr. (under God for this preſent Voyage,) Walter Furler. and now riding at Anchor in the Bay of Cadiz, and by Gods grace bound for Topſam (To ſay) nineteen Hogſheads of Sherries Wine, and four barrels of Raiſons for my account being mar­ked and numbred as in the Margent; And are to be delivered in the like good order and well conditioned at the aforeſaid Port of Topſam (the dangers of the Seas only excepted) unto Thomas Crocker or his Aſſignes, he or they paying freight for the ſaid goods, with Pri­mage and Avarage accuſtomed. In witneſs whereof the Maſter or Purſer of the ſaid Ship hath affirmed three bills of Lading, all of this tenor and date, the one of which three being accompliſhed, the other two to ſtand void, and ſo God ſend the good ſhip to her deſired Port in ſafety, Amen.

Walter Furler.
Brother Thomas.

GOd ſending you well at Topſam, pray ſee the Veſſediſcharged, and for what goods I have aboard diſpoſe thereof which is four Barrels of Reiſons and nineteen hogſheads of Sheries Sack, & one hundred and eighty dozen of Corke, and what Salt ſhe may have and Orringes and Lemonds. And after all if you can fit her out in time to come here againſt the Lent with Pilt­chards, ſo that you can come before the end of Ianuary and bide of and ſend a boat a ſhore to Mr. George Andrews, and conſigne the Ship and goods to Mr. Andrews. And if not, follow further order. So in haſt I Reſt Your

loving Brother Iohn Crocker.

And be ſure you draw up the Account of the Ship be­fore you come for England, and charge the freight for the goods a board, and if the Bills of lading ſhould not appear for what is a board, deſire the Maſter to take care to deliver it to my father. So I Reſt and God ſend you a good Voyage.

For Mr. Thomas Crocker Merchant

About this transcription

TextThe knavish merchant (now turn'd warehouseman) characterized or A severe scourge, for an unjust, cruel, and unconsionable adversary / By Philadelphus Verax a cordial friend to his honest (though injuriously oppressed) aquaintance Thomas Crocker merchant.
AuthorVerax, Philadelphus..
Extent Approx. 14 KB of XML-encoded text transcribed from 5 1-bit group-IV TIFF page images.
SeriesEarly English books online.
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(EEBO-TCP ; phase 2, no. A87805)

Transcribed from: (Early English Books Online ; image set 169380)

Images scanned from microfilm: (Thomason Tracts ; 162:E1088[2])

About the source text

Bibliographic informationThe knavish merchant (now turn'd warehouseman) characterized or A severe scourge, for an unjust, cruel, and unconsionable adversary / By Philadelphus Verax a cordial friend to his honest (though injuriously oppressed) aquaintance Thomas Crocker merchant. Verax, Philadelphus.. 8 p. s.n.],[London :Printed in the second month of the next year that tyrants ceas't do domineer. [1661]. (Annotation on Thomason copy: "Aprill 20".) (Reproduction of the original in the British Library.)
  • Crocker, Thomas -- Early works to 1800.
  • Business ethics -- England -- Early works to 1800.

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