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His interview with Good-Wills
of which be quickly found the Wicket-Gate; at which he knocked aloud, minding what was written over the gate, namely, “ Knock, and it shall be opened.” in · Now I saw in my dream, that as soon as he had knocked at the wicket-Gate, a whole shower of arrows were shot at him from the castle of Beelzebub, so that he was wounded in several places, and extremely frightened at the adventure ; which made him knock again and again very hard, for fear those that shot at him would come and kill, bim outright, before he could get in: but presently, to his great comfort, the gate was opened to him : and when he that opened the gate saw the arrow's stick in his flesh, he bid liin haste in, fór fear of more danger.
So le stepped in, and made obeisance to tlie man that opened the gate, for he seemed to be a person worthy of reverence, by his grave countenance and composed behaviour: so he spake to the man, whose name was Goud-Will, and said, Sir, having heard of the fame of the heavenly country, and being informed by several travellers that the way to it was by this gate, I being weary of living in the Valley of Destryction, and earnestly desirous to see that region of bliss, humbly made bold to knock at this gate, which you have been graciously pleased to open to me; for which high favour I return you my huinble and hearty thanks: but as I stood at the gate, after I knocked the first time, I was shot with these arrows which you now see sticking in my flesh, and I fear I am mortally wounded; for my spirits Fail me, and there is a mist before my eyes': and with that he fell at Good-Will's feet, begging biin to tell where he might find one that had skill to probe bis wounds, and cure him, if not mortal. - Good-Will, taking compassion on the young man, asked his name. My name, replied the young man, is Tender-Conscience: I was born and bred in the town of Vain-Delights. Then Good-Will having registered the young man's name, he wrote a certificate, and gave it to him, bidding him deliver it at the next house, which was the house of the Interpreter, withal shewing him the way to it, for it was but a little way off from the gate: there, says he, you will find a remedy for your. wounds, and see many glorious things. · Then I saw in my dream, that Good-Will gave to TenuerConscience a strong crutch, made of lignium-vitæ, or the tree of life, to rest himself upon, and ease his feet as he went along; he having nothing before it his hand but a twig of vain opinions, which he gathered from the tree of knowledge, growing
Tender-Conscience arrives at the In:erpreter's.
on the banks of the waters of confusion. This weak reed was all the staff that Tender-Conscience leaned upon in his journey, rill such time as. Good-W’ill, bidding him throw it away, gave him the aforesaid strong crutch, which he bid him be sure not. to part with, for that it should be of singular use to him all the way, and especially now when he was wounded, for that it haď a particular virtue to stay the bleeding of wounds. So GoodWill, having given Tender-Conscience ample directions to find the way, bade him farewell, and left him to go forward on his journey.'
Then Tender-Conscience began to pluck up bis spirits, being much 'comforted, eased, and supported, by the crutch which Good-Will had given him. For no sooner was he in possession of it, but his wounds abated in bleeding; and by the time it grew warm in his hand, it sent forth a certain odoriferous perfume, which exceedingly refreshed his spirits, and he found himself grow stronger and stronger by the healing virtue of this wonderful crutch. :
And thus' he travelled on, till at length he arrived at the house of the Interpreter, where, knocking at the door, ove presently opened; and, asking his business, Tender-Conscience made answer, I would speak with the Interpreter, who, I understand, is the master of the house. So one called the Interpreter, who came forth with to Tender-Conscience, and denianded what he would have.
TENDÉR. Sir, I was recommended to you by one Goud-Will, who keeps yonder Wicket-Gate. For travelling from the town where I was born, in the Valley of Destruction, towards the region of life, I came to the Wicket-Gate, as I was directed; and as soon as I had knocked there, I was shot with these arrows that you see sticking in my flesh: and, when the gate was opened, I made my condition known to Good-Will, and told him I was afraid some of my wounds were mortal, desiring him to acquaint me where I might find a physician; so he recommended me to you, giving me this certificate of his hand, and bidding me deliver it unto you; assuring me, that in this place I should find a remedy for my wounds, and see many glorious things : he likewise gave me this strong crutch which you see in my hand, which has afforded me great comfort and assistance, by refreshing my fainting spirits, supporting me in the way, and putting a stop to the excessive bleeding of my wounds: but it is from you that I hope for the finishing of my cure. ... INTER. Welcome, young man (said the Interpreter, after he
Tender-Conscience leares the Interpreter's.
had read the certificate,) come in, and partake of the good things of this house; and before you go away, I hope to see,' you whole and sound. .
So he conducted him into a parlour, and asked him several questions concerning his country, and the manner of his life there. To all which Tender-Conscience made particular answers, giving him an exact account of his education, and how he had spent the time of his youth vill that day. After which the Interpreter narrowly searched the wounds which he had received by the arrows that day, and applied a sovereign bala', sam to them, whereby Tender-Conscience became straightway whole and sound; and the Interpreter caused the arrows that he had pulled out of his body to be laid up safe, as a memorial of bis narrow escape from death. Then he carried him into the dining-room, and entertained him at a richi yet frugal banquet, feasting him with the best restoratives in the world, for he considered that Tender-Conscience was weak and feeble, and had a tedious journey to go; therefore he judged it necessary to treat him with diet and strong nourishment, that he might be the better enabled to undergo the hardships of travelling in that tiresome road..o . . . .
After the banquet was over, he carried him into the several apartments of the house, and shewed him all the excellent things which Christian and Christiana bis wife, with their, children and companions, saw in this place. And when it grew towards the going down of the sun, he conducted Tender-Con-, science to the dining-room, where they took a moderate repast together, and spent the residue of that evening in profitable discourse; the Interpreter taking that opportunity to inform him fully of the laws and customs of that country, and to instruct him in his way, with directions what company he should keep or avoid, and how he should behave himself along the road. Then he shiewed him to his chamber, and left him to his repose.
The next morning, by the break of day, Tender-Conscience arose, and prepared for his journey; and the Interpreter, having performed all the offices of complete hospitality, told him he would bear him company a little way: which kind offer Tender-Conscience gladly embraced, both because he was a stranger altogether in those parts, and because he was in love with the Interpreter's good conversation. So they walked out together, and taking their way over a large corn-field, through which there lay a path into the high road from the Interpre.
Conversation between Tender-Conscience and the Interpreter
ter's house, they came to a lane, on each side of which there stood a manor house, with lands belonging to each of them, · Then Tenıler-Conscience took notice that the grounds of one farm were all in a flourishing and prosperous condition, a plen- tiful crop of corn, lovely pastures, and those well stocked with cattle, the fences every where strong and close, and all things in exceeding good case: whereas on the other side, the opposite farm lay at sixes and sevens, (as the old saying is,) some part of the ground was overgrown with nettles, briars, and thorns, and all manner of unprofitable weeds; and the other part was uncultivated, and lay covered with stones, the fences ; down, and wild beasts browsing up and down on what they could find, all things laying at rack and manger; so that there was not the least sign of a future harvest. At which TenderConscience greatly marvelled, and asked the Interpreter the reason why there was so great a difference between the two farms, since, lying so close together, the one was a daily reproach to the other? To which the Interpreter replied, He that owns that farm on the right hồnd, which you behold in so fair and flourishing a condition, is the King's tenant, as likewise is the other, for both the manors belong to the King of the country.
Now upon a time the King, taking his progress this way, and being informed that he had two fair farms in this place untenanted, and that, for want of looking after, they were both run to ruin, (for at that time they were both alike,) he put them presently into the hands of these two men who live in them now, telling them withal, for their encouragement, that they should not only live rent-free (saving some homage to be paid at his court) but should also be removed to places of inestimable dignity and value, provided they would but be industrious, and cleanse the farms, and improve them with the best husbandry they could, because he loved not that any of the crown lands should run to ruin: these two men were put in possession of the farms, and each had his house and lands apart..!
Now the man on the left hand, taking a survey of his new farm, and finding it all grown with weeds and briars, covered with stones, the fences down, wild beasts ranging up and down in the grounds, and all things like a wilderness, sat down and folded his arms, despairing ever to cleanse his farin, or bring it into any order; so he fell to rioting and drunkenness, to gaming and wantonness, never regarding his farm, or so much as once thinking of it; so that he run deeply in debt, and has lost his reputation among all his neighbours; and unless he speedily
concerning the two Farms.
take up, and set himself to cleansing and manuring his farm, he will certainly fall into the King's displeasure, who will cast him into prison for neglecting his farm, (for so he threatened them at first,) whence he caunot escape till he has made full satisfaction to the King for his beinous offence.
But, on the contrary, the tenant on the right hand having surveyed his farm in like manner as the other did, and finding it in ihe same condition, all run to ruin and disorder, he considered with himself the great favour he had received in being intrusted with one of the King's farms, and how heinous a crime it would be to slight such a benefit as was proposed to him, both for the present and future, if he would but improve his gift: then he considered likewise, that though it was a great farm, and all in a manner like a wilderness, yet by endeavouring every day to cleanse it, in time he should compass the whole,
These considerations made him set about it with all speed, and he began by little to weed, and remove the stones from off the ground; and so by daily labouring at it, he at length reduced it to this good order you see it in now: and he is in assured hopes of obtaining the King's promise, and of being removed to a more noble and honourable station.
In my opinion, said Tender-Conscience, the farmer on the left hand is very much to blame in neglecting so fair an upportunity of raising himself: had he but followed the steps of his opposite neighbour, and done something every day towards the cleansing of his farm, he might by this time have reaped the benefit of it, and had the returns of plentiful crops, besides the continuance and increase of the King's favour, who would no doubt, in tine, have been as good as his word. .
Just such, said the Interpreter, is the condition of you travellers, who come from the Valley of Destruction, and are going to the region of life and glory : the King of that place only requires of you to husband well his gifts and graces, to improve your talents, and persevere to ihe end of your pilgrimage, and then you will be translated to eternal mansions. Now the way to do this is, not to be discouraged with the length of your journey, por frightened with the apprehensions you may have of the difficulties to be overcome, and the dangers to be encountered by the way: but you must arm yourself with a firm resolution to go through all, making some progress every day; for to stand still is to go back : and, therefore, like the wise and industrious farmer on the right hand, who every day weeded and stoned some part of his grounds, so must you daily go on,