To All Valiant Soldiers


Great Heroes!2 You may justly laugh at me if I went about to censure, instruct, or advise in the valiant art and discipline of war. But I do but only take the name, having no knowledge in the art, nor practise in the use, for I never saw an army together, nor any encounters in my life, but only by chance a troop or regiment march on the highway.3 Neither have I the courage to look on the cruel assaults that mankind4 (as I have heard) will make at each other, but according to the constitution of my sex, I am as fearful as a hare: for I shall start at the noise of a potgun, and shut my eyes at the sight of a bloody sword, and run away at the least5 alarm. Only my courage is, I can hear a sad relation, though6 not without grief and chillness of spirits. But these armies I mention in this part7 were raised in my brain, fought in my fancy, and registered in my closet.

  1. To All Valiant Soldiers] An Epistle to Souldiers 1653
  2. Heroes! ] Heroicks, 1653; Heroes, 1664
  3. but only by chance a troop or regiment march on the highway.] I have seen a Troop, or a Regiment march on the Highway by chance, or so; 1653
  4. mankind] Men 1668
  5. the least] least at 1664
  6. though] but 1653
  7. mention in this part] mention, 1653