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TREASURY of HIDDEN SECRETS A 17th-century housewives' handbook of cookery, herbals, and medicine
attributed to
John Partridge

1653 Address to the Readers

To all Women that love and professe the practice of good huswifery, as well Wives as Maides:

Courteous Gentlewomen, honest Matrons, and vertuous Virgins, I did not long ago print (in my opinion) a very necessary Book of Cookery, and bequeathed it unto you, called, The Good huswives hand-maid for the Kitchin, and perceiving no less, but that it was acceptable among many of you, I have lately reprinted the same; and for that this Booke, called, The good huswives Closet, of necessary provision for the health of her Houshold, containing, the manner as well to make all kinds of Conserves and Sirrops, and Sugar-paste for banquetting dishes, Succade, Marmadale and Marchpane, divers sweet distilled waters of great vertue, fine Powders for Presses, and Chests, with woollen and linuen Clothes, and Furres, to keep them from moth-eating, and many precious Oyles of sundry operasions and effects: as also necessary directions for preparation of good and wholesome Kitchin Physick, in making good Medicines, wholesome Drinkes, and other comfortable things, to help and cherish the sick and weake in your house, hath likewise beene printed by me aforetime; I thought good now to advertize you, that I have conferred them both together, and in examining them, found some things in the one, more pertinent unto the other and some things in the one that was likewise in the other, and therefore needlesse that the selfe-same things should be in both, I have therefore placed each thing that before was out of order, in his due and convenient place, and do commend both unto your protection: the one for your Kitchin, and this other ready helpe, alwales at hand as a Storehouse, or Treasury of many profitable secrets, and unknown conceits to be used as occasion shall require. First, Printed at the request of a Lady of great calling, and now augmented with some rare conceits not before published: How good soever they be, yours they be: and my selfe at your command, to publish any thing that may be to your good liking, and to amend what otherwise shall prove to your discontentment.
I. W. Printer.


The Author of these Secrets to this Book
Upon occasion that a Lady of Honourable regard, having seene this Booke in writing, earnestly requested, or rather commanded to have a copy of the same.

Goe little Booke of profit and pleasance,
To my Honourable Lady without delay:
Shew her I send thee for performance
Of her request, sith she would have no nay:
Yea, say, her command of me hath obtained
Thee: that no gold nor good could have gained.