I who am the son of a man with whom you have no concern I who was once Fellow of a College whose buttery-hatch you have not seen. I was loathsomely drunk. But consider how lightly I am touched. It is nothing to me. Less than nothing; for I do not even feel the headache which should be my portion. Now, in a higher life, how ghastly would have been my punishment, how bitter my repentance!
In fact, on the very morning after his arrival he made an early toilette, and went to the buttery-hatch for his breakfast. Here were several servants, Pope, the butler, among them. Bread and butter seems to have been the staple of the morning meal, though the butler made it more palatable by a liberal addition of ale and sack.
It was simply an impossibility that I could say any thing henceforth to good effect, when I had been posted up by the marshal on the buttery-hatch of every College of my University, after the manner of discommoned pastry-cooks, and when in every part of the country and every class of society, through every organ and opportunity of opinion, in newspapers, in periodicals, at meetings, in pulpits, at dinner-tables, in coffee-rooms, in railway carriages, I was denounced as a traitor who had laid his train and was detected in the very act of firing it against the time-honoured Establishment.
The whole of the building was crowned with a considerable pediment of what seemed at the first glance fanciful open work, but which examined more nearly offered in gigantic letters the motto of the house of Marney. The portal opened to a hall, such as is now rarely found; with the dais, the screen, the gallery, and the buttery-hatch all perfect, and all of carved black oak.
Lady Thistlewood pronounced that no power on earth should induce her to open it, and drew off herself and her little girls to a safe distance from the secret poison she fancied it contained; while Sir Marmaduke was rating the constables for taking advantage of his absence to interpret the Queen's Vagrant Act in their own violent fashion; ending, however, by sending them round to the buttery-hatch to drink the young Lord's health.
This was the family sitting and dining room, and had a huge chimney never devoid of a wood fire. One end had a buttery-hatch communicating with the kitchen and offices; at the other was a small room, sacred to the master of the house, niched under the broad staircase that led to the upper rooms, which opened on a gallery running round three sides of the hall.
They have all the true Suett stamp, a loose and shambling gait, a slippery tongue, this last the ready midwife to a without-pain-delivered jest; in words, light as air, venting truths deep as the centre; with idlest rhymes tagging conceit when busiest, singing with Lear in the tempest, or Sir Toby at the buttery-hatch.
Upon receiving a gentle hint that some refreshment would not be unacceptable, he presently conveyed the smith to the buttery-hatch, where dressed provisions of all sorts were distributed, with hospitable profusion, to all who asked for them.
"The next morning" said the king continuing his strange story, "I arose pretty early, having a very good stomach, and went to the buttery-hatch to get my breakfast, where I found Pope and two or three other men in the room, and we all fell to eating bread and butter, to which he gave us very good ale and sack.
Soon the court began to be filled with the neighbouring villagers, with beggars, palmers, mendicant friars of all orders, pressing to the buttery-hatch, where they received the dole of bread, meat, and ale, from the hands of the pantler, under the direction of the almoner of Glastonbury, who requested their prayers for the soul of the noble Sir Reginald Lynwood, and Dame Eleanor of Clarenham, his wife.