This is one of many stories in Richard Gough’s History of Myddle where people have good starts in life but lose it all, often though drink or misfortune. But mostly from drink.
Thomas Hall lived at Balderton with his father in law, and during his life hee was a reasonable good husband, but after his decease, he let loose the reins to many disorderly courses, as cocking, raseing, drinking and lewdnesse. Hee had one bastard borne to him in his own house, by a daughter of William Bickley. This bastard when hee was grown of age went to service, and theire faling lame, hee was att the charge of the parish putt to a Surgeon who cutt off one of his leggs and cured him; this cost the parish above £20/after hee was healed hee went to London, and from thence brought a wife, as hee calls her. He now lives in a cave of Haremeare Hill, and has maintenance of the parish.
I love the ‘as he calls her.’