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Epitaph On Robert Canynge

THYS mornynge starre of Radcleves rysynge raie,
A true manne good of mynde and Canynge hyghte,
Benethe thys stone lies moltrynge ynto daie,
Untylle the darke tombe sheene an eterne lyghte.
Thyrde fromme hys loynes the present Canynge came;
Houton are wordes for to telle hys doe;
For aye shall lyve hys heaven-recorded name,
Ne shall yt dye whanne tyme shalle bee no moe;
Whanne Mychael's trumpe shall sounde to rise the solle,
He'll wynge to heavn wyth kynne, and happie bee hys dolle.

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Related quotes

The true the good and the beautiful

They go together
& so even if you are good but not true
then you are not beautiful,

and even if you are beautiful
but you are not true then you are not good

or even if you are true but then you are not good
then you are not beautiful

always remember that
they always go together so for you to be beautiful
and really beautiful
you must be also good and you must be always true,

this is the goodness of truth and its beauty
that all depends on you, now i can go, so please be

the true, the good and the beautiful

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Ælla, A Tragical Interlude - Act IV

TYS nowe fulle morne; I thoughten, bie laste nyghte
To have been heere; mie stede han notte mie love;
Thys ys mie pallace; lette mie hyndes alyghte,
Whylste I goe oppe, & wake mie slepeynge dove.
Staie here, mie hyndlettes; I shal goe above.
Nowe, Birtha, wyll thie loke enhele mie spryte,
Thie smyles unto mie woundes a baulme wylle prove;
Mie ledanne boddie wylle bee sette aryghte.
Egwina, haste, & ope the portalle door;
Yatte I on Birtha's breste maie thynke of ware nemore.

Oh Ælla!
Ah! that semmlykeene to mee
Speeketh a legendary tale of woe.
Birtha is --
Whatt? where? how? saie, whatte of shee?
Gone --
Gone! ye goddes!
Alas! ytte ys toe true.
Yee seynctes, hee dies awaie wythe myckle woe!
Ælla! what? Ælla! oh! hee lyves agen.
Cal mee notte Ælla; I am hymme ne moe.
Where ys shee gon awaie? ah! speake! how? when?
I will.
Caparyson a score of stedes; flie, flie.
Where ys shee? swythynne speeke, or instante thou shalte die.
Stylle thie loud rage, & here thou whatte I knowe.
Oh! speek.
Lyche prymrose, droopynge wythe the heavie rayne,
Laste nyghte I lefte her, droopynge wythe her wiere,
Her love the gare, thatte gave her harte syke peyne --
Her love! to whomme?
To thee, her spouse alleyne .
As ys mie hentylle everyche morne to goe,
I wente, and oped her chamber doore ynn twayne,
Botte found her notte, as I was wont to doe;
Thanne alle arounde the pallace I dyd seere
Botte culde (to mie hartes woe) ne fynde her aniewheere.
Thou lyest, foul hagge! thou lyest; thou art her ayde
To chere her louste; -- botte noe; ytte cannotte bee.
Gyff trouthe appear notte inne whatte I have sayde,
Drawe forthe thie anlace swythyn, thanne mee slea.
Botte yette ytte muste, ytte muste bee soe; I see,
Shee wythe somme loustie paramoure ys gone;
Itte moste bee soe -- oh! how ytte wracketh mee!
Mie race of love, mie race of lyfe ys ronne;
Nowe rage, & brondeous storm, & tempeste comme;
Nete lyvynge upon erthe can now enswote mie domme.

Loverde! I am aboute the trouthe to saie.
Laste nyghte, fulle late I dydde retourne to reste.
As to mie chamber I dydde betide mie waie,
To Birtha onne hys name and place addreste;
Downe to hym camme shee; butte thereof the reste
I ken ne matter; so, mie hommage made--
O! speake ne moe; mie harte flames yn yttes heste;
I once was Ælla; nowe bee notte yttes shade.
Hanne alle the fuirie of mysfortunes wylle
Fallen mine mie benned headde I hanne been Ælla stylle.
Thys alleyn was unburled of alle mie spryte;
Mie honnoure, honnoure, frownd on the dolce wynde,
Thatte steeked on ytte; nowe wyth rage Im pyghte;
A brondeous unweere ys mie engyned mynde.
Mie hommeur yette somme drybblet joie maie fynde,
To the Danes woundes I wylle another yeve;
Whanne thos mie rennome and mie peace ys rynde,
Itte were a recrandize to thyncke toe live;
Mie huscarles, untoe everie asker telle,
Gyffe noblie Ælla lyved, as noblie Ælla felle.

Ælla ys sleene; the flower of Englond's marrde!
Be stylle; stythe lette the chyrches rynge mie knelle.
Call hyther brave Coernyke; he, as warde
Of thys mie Brystowe castle, wyll doe welle.

Thee I ordeyne the warde; so alle maie telle.
I have botte lyttel tym to dragge thys lyfe;
Mie lethal tale, alyche a lethalle belle,
Dynne yn the eares of her I wyschd mie wyfe!
Botte ah! shee maie be fayre.
Yatte shee moste bee.
Ah! saie notte soe; yatte worde woulde Ælla dobblie slee.

Ah! Birtha here!
Whatte dynne ys thys? Whatte merits yis leathalle knelle?
Where ys mie Ælla? speeke; where? howe ys hee?
Oh Ælla! art thou yanne alyve and well!
I lyve yndeed; botte doe notte lyve for thee.
Whatte menes mie Ælla?
Here mie meneynge see.
Thie foulness urged mie honde to gyve thys wounde,
Ytte mee unsprytes.
Ytte hathe unspryted mee.
Ah heavens! mie Birtha fallethe to the grounde!
Botte yette I am a manne, and so wylle bee.
Ælla! I amme a Dane; botte yette a friende to thee.
Thys damoyselle I founde wythynne a woode,
Strevynge fulle harde anenste a burled swayne;
I sente hym myrynge ynne mie compheeres blodde,
Celmonde hys name, chief of thie warrynge trayne.
Yis damoiselle soughte to be here agayne;
The whyche, albeytte foemen, wee dydd wylle;
So here wee broughte her wythe you to remayne.
Yee nobyile Danes! wythe goulde I wyll you fylle.
Birtha, mie lyfe! mie love! oh! she ys fayre.
Whatte faultes could Birtha have, whatte faultes could Ælla feare?
Amm I yenne thyne? I cannotte blame thie feere.
Botte doe reste mee uponne mie Ælla's breaste;
I wylle to thee bewryen the woefulle gare.
Celmonde dyd comme to mee at tyme of reste,
Wordeynge for mee to flie, att your requeste,
To Watchette towne, where you deceasynge laie;
I wyth hym fledde; thro' a murke wode we preste,
Where hee foule love unto mie eares dyd saie;
The Danes --
Oh! I die content. --

Oh! ys mie Ælla dedde?
O! I will make hys grave mie vyrgyn spousal bedde.

Whatt? Ælla deadde! and Birtha dyynge toe!
Soe falles the fayrest flourettes of the playne.
Who canne unplyte the wurchys heaven can doe?
Or who untweste the role of shappe yn twayne?
Ælla, the rennome was thie onlie gayne;
For yatte, thie pleasaunce, & thie joie was loste.
Thie countrymen shall rere thee, on the playne,
A pyle of carnes, as anie grave can boaste;
Further, a just amede to thee to bee,
Inne heaven thou synge of Godde, on erthe we'lle synge of thee.
The Ende.

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The Storie Of William Canynge

ANENT a brooklette as I laie reclynd,
Listeynge to heare the water glyde alonge,
Myndeynge how thorowe the grene mees yt twynd,
Awhilst the cavys respons'd yts mottring songe,
At dystaunt rysyng Avonne to he sped,
Amenged wyth rysyng hylles dyd shewe yts head;
Engarlanded wyth crownes of osyer weedes
And wraytes of alders of a bercie scent,
And stickeynge out wyth clowde agested reedes,
The hoarie Avonne show'd dyre semblamente,
Whylest blataunt Severne, from Sabryna clepde,
Rores flemie o'er the sandes that she hepde.
These eynegears swythyn bringethe to mie thowghte
Of hardie champyons knowen to the floude,
How onne the bankes thereof brave Ælle fought;
Ælle descended from Merce kynglie bloude,
Warden of Brystowe towne and castel stede,
Who ever and anon made Danes to blede.
Methoughte such doughtie menn must have a sprighte
Dote yn the armour brace that Mychael bore,
Whan he wyth Satan kynge of helle dyd fyghte,
And earthe was drented yn a mere of gore;
Orr, soone as theie dyd see the worldis lyghte,
Fate had wrott downe, thys mann ys borne to fyghte.
Ælle, I sayd, or els my mynde dyd saie,
Whie ys thy actyons left so spare yn storie?
Were I toe dispone, there should lyvven aie
In erthe and hevenis rolles thie tale of glorie
Thie actes soe doughtie should for aie abyde,
And bie theyre teste all after actes be tryde.
Next holie Wareburghus fylld mie mynde,
As fayre a sayncte as anie towne can boaste,
Or bee the erthe wyth lyghte or merke ywrynde,
I see hys ymage waulkeyng throwe the coaste.
Fitz Hardynge, Bithrickus, and twentie moe
Ynn visyonn fore mie phantasie dyd goe.
Thus all mie wandrynge faytour thynkeynge strayde
And eche dygne buylder dequac'd onn mie mynde,
Whan from the distaunt streeme arose a mayde,
Whose gentle tresses mov'd not to the wynde;
Lyche to the sylver moone yn frostie neete,
The damoiselle dyd come soe blythe and sweete.
Ne browded mantell of a scarlette hue,
Ne shoone pykes plaited o'er wyth ribbande geere,
Ne costlie paraments of woden blue,
Noughte of a dresse, but bewtie dyd shee weere;
Naked shee was, and loked swete of youthe,
All dyd bewryen that her name was Trouthe.
The ethie ringletts of her notte-browne hayre
What ne a manne should see dyd swotelie hyde,
Whych on her milk-white bodykin so fayre
Dyd showe lyke browne streemes sowlyng the white tyde,
Or veynes of brown hue yn a marble cuarr,
Whyche by the traveller ys kenn'd from farr.
Astounded mickle there I sylente laie,
Still scauncing wondrous at the walkynge syghte;
Mie senses forgarde ne coulde reyn awaie;
But was ne forstraughte whan shee dyd alyghte
Anie to mee, dreste up yn naked viewe,
Whych mote yn some ewbrycious thoughtes abrewe.
But I ne dyd once thynke of wanton thoughte;
For well I mynded what bie vowe I hete,
And yn mie pockate han a crouchee brought;
Whych yn the blosom woulde such sins anete;
I lok'd wyth eyne as pure as angelles doe,
And dyd the everie thoughte of foule eschewe.
Wyth sweet semblate and an angel's grace
Shee 'gan to lecture from her gentle breste;
For Trouthis wordes ys her myndes face,
False oratoryes she dyd aie deteste.
Sweetnesse was yn eche worde she dyd ywreene,
Tho shee strove not to make that sweetnesse sheene.
Shee sayd; mie manner of appereynge here
Mie name and sleyghted myndbruch maie thee telle;
I'm Trouthe, that dyd descende fromm heavenwere,
Goulers and courtiers doe not kenne mee welle;
Thie inmoste thoughtes, thie labrynge brayne I sawe,
And from thie gentle dreeme will thee adawe.
Full manie champyons and menne of lore,
Payncters and carvellers have gaind good name,
But there's a Canynge, to encrease the store,
A Canynge, who sall buie uppe all theyre fame.
Take thou mie power, and see yn chylde and manne
What troulie noblenesse yn Canynge ranne.
As when a bordelier onn ethie bedde,
Tyr'd wyth the laboures maynt of sweltrie daie,
Yn slepeis bosom laieth hys deft headde,
So, senses sonke to reste, mie boddie laie;
Eftsoons mie sprighte, from erthlie bandes untyde,
Immengde yn flanched ayre wyth Trouthe asyde.
Strayte was I carryd back to tymes of yore,
Whylst Canynge swathed yet yn fleshlie bedde,
And saw all actyons whych han been before,
And all the scroll of Fate unravelled;
And when the fate-mark'd babe acome to syghte,
I saw hym eager gaspynge after lyghte.
In all hys shepen gambols and chyldes plaie,
In everie merriemakeyng, fayre or wake,
I kenn'd a perpled lyghte of Wysdom's raie;
He eate downe learnynge wyth the wastle cake.
As wise as anie of the eldermenne,
He'd wytte enowe toe make a mayre at tenne.
As the dulce downie barbe beganne to gre,
So was the well thyghte texture of hys lore;
Eche daie enhedeynge mockler for to bee,
Greete yn hys councel for the daies he bore.
All tongues, all carrols dyd unto hym synge,
Wondryng at one soe wyse, and yet soe yinge.
Encreaseynge yn the yeares of mortal lyfe,
And hasteynge to hys journie ynto heaven,
Hee thoughte ytt proper for to cheese a wyse,
And use the sexes for the purpose gevene.
Hee then was yothe of cornelie semelikeede,
And hee had made a mayden's herte to blede.
He had a fader, (Jesus rest hys soule!)
Who loved money, as hys charie joie;
slee had a broder (happie manne be's dole!)
Yn mynde and boddie, hys owne fadre's boie;
What then could Canynge wissen as a parte
To gyve to her whoe had made chop of hearte?
But landes and castle tenures, golde and bighes,
And hoardes of sylver rousted yn the ent,
Canynge and hys fayre sweete dyd that despyse,
To change of troulie love was theyr content;
Theie lyv'd togeder yn a house adygne,
Of goode sendaument commilie and fyne.
But soone hys broder and hys syre dyd die,
And lefte to Willyam states and renteynge rolles,
And at hys wyll hys broder Johne supplie.
Hee gave a chauntrie to redeeme theyre soules;
And put hys broder ynto syke a trade,
That he lorde mayor of Londonne towne was made.
Eftsoons hys mornynge tournd to gloomie nyghte;
Hys dame, hys seconde selfe, gyve upp her brethe,
Seekeynge for eterne lyfe and endless lyghte,
And sleed good Canynge; sad mystake of dethe
Soe have I seen a flower ynn Sommer tyme
Trodde downe and broke and widder ynn ytts pryme.
Next Radcleeve chyrche (oh worke of hande of heav'n,
Whare Canynge sheweth as an instrumente,)
Was to my bismarde eyne-syghte newlie giv'n;
'Tis past to blazonne ytt to good contente.
You that woulde faygn the fetyve buyldynge see
Repayre to Radcleve, and contented bee.
I sawe the myndbruch of hys nobille soule
Whan Edwarde meniced a seconde wyfe;
I saw what Pheryons yn hys mynde dyd rolle;
Nowe fyx'd fromm seconde dames a preeste for lyfe.
Thys ys the manne of menne, the vision spoke;
Then belle for even-songe mie senses woke.

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Goddwyn; A Tragedie

HAROLDE, bie T. Rowleie, the Aucthoure.
GODDWYN, bie Johan de Iscamme.
ELWARDE, bie Syrr Thybbot Gorges.
ALSTAN, bie Syrr Alan de Vere.
KYNGE EDWARD; bie Mastre Wilyam Canynge.
Odhers bie Knyghtes Mynnstrells.

WHYLOMME bie pensmenne moke ungentle name
Have upon Goddwynne Erle of Kente bin layde,
Dherebie benymmynge hymme of faie and fame;
Unliart divinistres haveth saide,
Thatte he was knowen toe noe hallie wurche ;
Botte thys was all hys faulte, he gyfted ne the churche.
The aucthoure of the piece whiche we enacte,
Albeytte a clergyon trouthe wyll wrytte.
Inne drawynge of hys menne no wytte ys lackte;
Entyn a kynge mote bee full pleased to nyghte.
Attende, and marcke the partes nowe to be done;
Wee better for toe doe do champyon anie onne.

M ie loverde!
O! I weepe to thyncke,
What foemen riseth to isrete the londe.
Theie batten onne her fleshe, her hartes bloude dryncke,
And all ys graunted from the roieal honde.
Lette notte this agreme blyn ne aledge stonde;
Bee I toe wepe, I wepe in teres of gore.
Am I betrassed , syke shulde mie burlie bronde
Depeyncte the wronges on hym from whom I bore.
I ken thie spryte ful welle; gentle thou art,
Stringe , ugsomme rou as smethynge armyes seeme;
Yett efte , I feare, thie chefes toe grete a parte,
And that thie rede bee efte borne downe bie breme .
What tydynges from the kynge?
His Normans know.
I make noe compheeres of the shemrynge trayne.
Ah Harolde! tis a syghte of myckle woe,
To kenne these Normannes everich rennome gayne.
What tydynge withe the foulke ?
Stylle mormorynge atte yer shap , stylle toe the kynge
Theie rolle theire trobbles, lyche a sorgie sea.
Hane Englonde thenne a tongue, butte notte a stynge?
Dothe alle compleyne, yette none wylle ryghted bee?
Awayte the tyme, whanne Godde wylle sende us ayde.
No, we muste streve to ayde oureselves wyth powre.
Whan Godde wylle sende us ayde! tis fetelie prayde.
Moste we those calke awaie the lyve-longe howre?
Thos croche oure armes, and ne toe lyve dareygne ,
Unburled , undelievre , unespryte ?
Far fro mie harte be fled thyk thoughte of peyne,
Ile free mie countrie, or Ille die yn fyghte.
Botte lette us wayte untylle somme season fytte.
Mie Kentyshmen, thie Summertons shall ryse;
Adented prowess to the gite of witte,
Agayne the argent horse shall daunce yn skies.
Oh Harolde, heere forstraughteynge wanhope lies.
Englonde, oh Englonde, tys for thee I blethe .
Whylste Edwarde to thie sonnes wylle nete alyse ,
Shulde anie of thie sonnes sele aughte of ethe ?
Upponne the trone I sette thee, helde thie crowne;
Botte oh! twere hommage nowe to pyghte thee downe.
Thou arte all preeste, & notheynge of the kynge.
Thou arte all Norman, nothynge of mie blodde.
Know, ytte beseies thee notte a masse to synge;
Servynge thie leegefolcke thou arte servynge Godde.
Thenne Ille doe heaven a servyce. To the skyes
The dailie contekes of the londe ascende,
The wyddowe, fahdrelesse, & bondemennes cries
Acheke the mokie aire & heaven astende
On us the rulers doe the folcke depende
Hancelled from erthe these Normanne hyndes shalle bee;
Lyche a battently low , mie swerde shalle brende ;
Lyche fallynge softe rayne droppes, I wyll hem slea .
Wee wayte too longe; our purpose wylle defayte
Aboune the hyghe empryze , & rouze the champyones strayte.
Thie suster --
Aye, I knowe, she is his queene.
Albeytte , dyd shee speeke her foemen fayre,
I wulde dequace her comlie semlykeene ,
And foulde mie bloddie anlace yn her hayre.
Thye fhuir blyn .
No, bydde the leathal mere ,
Upriste withe hiltrene wyndes & cause unkend ,
Beheste it to be lete ; so twylle appeare,
Eere Harolde hyde hys name, his contries frende.
The gule-steyncte brygandyne , the adventayle
The feerie anlace brede shal make mie gare prevayle.
Harolde, what wuldest doe?
Bethyncke thee whatt,
Here liethe Englonde, all her drites unfree,
Here liethe Normans coupynge her bie lotte,
Caltysnyng everich native plante to gre
Whatte woulde I doe? I brondeous wulde hem slee ;
Tare owte theyre sable harte bie ryghtefulle breme ;
Theyre deathe a meanes untoe mie lyfe shulde bee,
Mie spryte shulde revelle yn theyr harte-blodde streme.
Eftsoones I wylle bewryne mie ragefulle ire,
And Goddis anlace wielde yn furie dyre.
Whatte wouldest thou wythe the kynge?
Take offe hys crowne;
The ruler of somme mynster hym ordeyne;
Sette uppe som dygner than I han pyghte downe;
And peace in Englonde shulde be brayd agayne.
No, lette the super-hallie seyncte kynge reygne,
Ande somme moe reded rule the untentyff reaulme;
Kynge Edwarde, yn hys cortesie, wylle deygne
So to yielde the spoiles, and alleyne were the heaulme
Botte from mee harte bee everych thoughte of gayne,
Nor anie of mie kin I wysche him to ordeyne.
Tell me the meenes, and I wylle boute ytte strayte;
Bete mee to slea mieself, ytte shalle be done.
To thee I wylle swythynne the menes unplayte ,
Bie whyche thou, Harolde, shalte be proved mie sonne.
I have longe seen whatte peynes were undergon,
Whatte agrames braunce out from the general tree;
The tyme ys commynge, whan the mollock gron
Drented of alle yts swolynge owndes shalle bee;
Mie remedie is goode; our menne shall ryse.
Eftsoons the Normans and owre agrame flies.
I will to the West, and gemote alle the knyghtes,
Wythe bylles that pancte for blodde, and sheeldes as brede
As the ybroched moon, when blaunch she dyghtes
The wodeland grounde or water-mantled mede;
Wythe hondes whose myghte canne make the doughtiest blede,
Who efte have knelte upon forslagen foes,
Whoe wythe yer fote orrests a castle-stede
Who dare on kynges for to bewrecke yiere woes;
Nowe wylle the menne of Englonde haile the daie,
Whan Goddwyn leades them to the ryghtfulle fraie.
Botte firste we'll call the loverdes of the West,
The erles of Mercia, Conventrie and all;
The moe wee gayne, the gare wylle prosper beste,
Wythe syke a nomber wee can never fall.
True, so wee sal doe best to lyncke the chayne,
And alle attenes the spreddynge kyngedomme bynde.
No crouched champyone wythe an harte moe feygne
Dyd yssue owte the hallie swerde to fynde,
Than I nowe strev to ryd mie londe of peyne.
Goddwyn, what thanckes owre laboures wylle enhepe!
I'lle ryse mie friendes unto the bloddie pleyne;
I'lle wake the honnoure thatte ys now aslepe.
When wylle the chiefes mete atte thie feastive halle,
That I wythe voice alowde maie there upon 'em calle?
Next eve, mie sonne.
Nowe, Englonde, ys the tyme,
Whan thee or thie felle foemens cause moste die.
Thie geason wronges bee reyne ynto theyre pryme;
Nowe wylle thie sonnes unto thie succoure flie.
Alyche a storm egederinge yn the skie,
Tys fulle ande brasteth on the chaper grounde;
Sycke shalle mie fhuirye on the Normans flie,
And alle theyre mittee
Nowe, nowe, wylle Harolde or oppressionne falle,
Ne moe the Englyshmenne yn vayne for hele shal calle.

BOTTE, loverde , whie so manie Normannes here?
Mee thynckethe wee bee notte yn Englyshe londe.
These browded straungers alwaie doe appere,
Theie parte yor trone , and sete at your ryghte honde.
Go to, goe to, you doe ne understonde.
Theie yeave mee lyffe, and dyd mie bowkie kepe;
Theie dyd mee feeste, and did embowre me gronde;
To trete hem ylle wulde lette mie kyndnesse slepe.
Mancas you have yn store, and to them parte;
Youre leege-folcke make moke dole , you have theyr worthe asterte .
I heste no rede of you. I ken mie friendes.
Hallie dheie are, fulle ready mee to hele ,
Theyre volundes are ystorven to self endes;
No denwere yn mie breste I of them fele.
I muste to prayers; goe yn, and you do wele;
I muste ne lose the dutie of the daie;
Go inne, go ynne, ande viewe the azure rele
Fulle welle I wote you have noe mynde toe praie.
I leeve youe to doe hommage heaven-were
To serve yor leege-folcke toe is doeynge hommage there.

Mie friende, Syr Hughe, whatte tydynges brynges thee here?
There is no mancas yn mie loverdes ente .
The hus dyspense unpaied doe appere;
The laste receivure ys eftesoones dispente
Thenne guylde the Weste.
Mie loverde, I dyd speke
Untoe the mitte Erle Harolde of the thynge;
He raysed hys honde, and smote me onne the cheke,
Saieynge, go beare thatte message to the kynge.
Arace hym of hys powere; bie Goddis worde,
Ne moe thatte Harolde shall ywield the erlies swerde.
Atte seeson sytte, mie loverde, lette itt bee;
Botte nowe the folcke doe soe enalse hys name,
Inne strevvynge to slea hymme, ourselves wee slea;
Syke ys the doughtyness of hys grete fame.
Hughe, I beethyncke, thie rede ys notte to blame.
Botte thou maiest fynde fulle store of marckes yn Kente.
Mie noble loverde, Godwynn ys the same
He sweeres he wylle notte swelle the Normans ent.
Ah traytoure! botte mie rage I wylle commaunde.
Thou arte a Normanne, Hugh; a straunger to the launde.
Thou kenneste howe these Englysche erle doe bere
Such stedness in the yll and evylle thynge,
Botte atte the goode theie hover yn denwere ,
Onknowlachynge gif thereunto to clynge.
Onwordie syke a marvelle of a kynge!
O Edward; thou deservest purer leege ;
To thee heie shulden all theire mancas brynge;
Thie nodde should save menne, and thie glomb forslege .
I amme no curriedowe I lacke no wite
I speke whatte bee the trouthe, and whatte all see is ryghte.
Thou arte a hallie mann; I doe thee pryze.
Comme, comme, and here and hele mee ynn mie praires.
Fulle twentie mancas I wylle thee alise ,
And twayne of hamlettes to thee and thie heyres.
So shalle all Normannes from mie londe be fed,
Theie alleyn have syke love as to acquyre yer bredde.

WHAN Freedom, dreste yn blodde-steyned veste,
To everie knyghte her warre-songe sunge,
Uponne her hedde wylde wedes were spredde;
A gorie anlace bye her honge.
She daunced onne the heathe;
She hearde the voice of deathe;
Pale-eyned assryghte, hys harte of sylver hue,
In vayne assayled her bosomme to acale
She hearde onflemed the shriekynge voice of woe,
And sadnesse ynne the owlette shake the dale.
She shooke the burled speere,
On hie she jeste her sheelde,
Her foemen all appere,
And flizze alonge the feelde.
Power, wythe his heafod straught ynto the skyes,
Hys speere a sonne-beame, and his sheelde a starre,
Alyche twaie brendeynge gronfyres rolls hys eyes,
Chastes with hys yronne feete and soundes to war.
She syttes upon a rock;
She bendes before his speere,
She ryses from the shocke,
Wieldynge her owne yn ayre.
Harde as the thonder dothe she drive ytte on,
Wytte scillye wympled gies ytte to hys crowne,
Hys longe sharpe speere, hys spreddynge sheelde ys gon,
He falles, and fallynge rolleth thousandes down.
War, goare-faced war, bie envie burld , arist
Hys feerie heaulme noddynge to the ayre,
Tenne bloddie arrowes ynne hys streynynge fyste --

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Bristowe Tragedie: Or The Dethe Of Syr Charles Badwin

THE featherd songster chaunticleer
Han wounde hys bugle horne,
And tolde the earlie villager
The commynge of the morne.
Kynge EDWARDE sawe the ruddie streakes
Of lyghte eclypse the greie;
And herde the raven's crokynge throte
Proclayme the fated daie.
'Thou'rt ryght,' quod hee, 'for, by the Godde
That syttes enthron'd on hyghe!
CHARLES BAWDIN, and hys fellowes twain,
To-daie shall surelie die.
Thenne wythe a jugge of nappy ale
Hys Knyghtes dydd onne hymm waite;
'Goe tell the traytour, thatt to-daie
'Hee leaves thys mortall state.'
Syr CANTERLONE thenne bendedd low;
Wythe harte brymm-fulle of woe;
Hee journey'd to the castle-gate,
And to Syr CHARLES dydd goe.
Butt whenne hee came, hys children twaine,
And eke hys lovynge wyfe,
Wythe brinie tears dydd wett the floore,
For goode Syr CHARLESES lyfe.
'O goode Syr CHARLES!' sayd CANTERLONE,
'Badde tydyngs I doe brynge.'
'Speke boldlie, manne,' sayd brave Syr CHARLES,
'Whatte says thie traytor kynge?'
'I greeve to telle, before yonne sonne
Does fromme the welkinn flye,
Hee hath uponne hys honour sworne,
Thatt thou thalt surelie die.'
'Wee all must die, quod brave Syr CHARLES;
'Of thatte I'm not affearde;
'Whatte bootes to lyve a little space?
'Thanke JESU, I'm prepar'd.
'Butt telle thye kynge, for myne hee's not,
'I'de sooner die to-daie
'Thanne lyve hys slave, as manie are,
'Tho' I shoulde lyve for aie.'
Thenne CANTERLONE hee dydd goe out,
To telle the maior straite
To gett all thynges ynne reddyness
For goode Syr CHARLESES fate.
Thenne Maisterr CANYNGE saughte the kynge,
And felle down onne hys knee;
'I'm come,' quod hee, 'unto your grace
'To move your clemencye.'
Thenne quod the kynge, 'Youre tale speke out,
'You have been much oure friende;
'Whatever youre request may bee,
'Wee wylle to ytte attende.'
'My nobile leige! alle my request
'Ys for a nobile knyghte,
'Who, tho' may hap hee has donne wronge,
'He thoghte ytte stylle was ryghte.
'Hee has a spouse and children twaine,
'Alle rewyn'd are for aie;
'Yff thatt you are resolv'd to lett
'CHARLES BAWDIN die to-daie.'
'Speke nott of such a traytour vile,'
The kynge ynne furie sayde;
'Before the evening starre doth sheene,
'BAWDIN shall loose hys hedde.
'Justice does loudlie for hym calle,
'And hee shalle have hys meede:
'Speke, Maister CANYNGE! Whatte thynge else
'Att present doe you neede?
'My nobile leige!' goode CANYNGE sayde,
'Leave justice to our Godde,
'And laye the yronne rule asyde;
'Be thyne the olyve rodde.
'Was Godde to serche our hertes and reines,
'The best were synners grete;
'CHRIST'S vycarr only knowes ne synne,
'Ynne alle thys mortall state.
'Lett mercie rule thyne infante reign;
''Twylle faste thye crowne fulle sure;
'From race to race thy familie
'Alle sov'reigns shall endure.
'But yff wythe bloode and slaughter thou
'Beginne thy infante reign;
'Thy crowne uponne thy childrennes brows
'Wylle never long remayne.'
'CANYNGE, awaie! thys traytour vile
'Has scorn'd my power and mee;
'Howe canst thou thenne for such a manne
'Intreate my clemencye?'
'My nobile leige! the trulie brave
'Wylle val'rous actions prize,
'Respect a brave and nobile mynde,
'Altho' ynne enemies.'
'CANYNGE, awale! By Godde ynne Heav'n
'Thatt dydd mee beinge gyve,
'I wylle nott taste a bitt of breade
'Whilst thys Syr CHARLES dothe lyve.
'By MARIE, and alle Seinctes ynne Heav'n,
'Thys sunne shall be hys laste.'
Thenne CANYNGE dropt a brinie teare,
And from the presence paste.
Wyth herte brymm-fulle of gnawynge grief,
Hee to Syr CHARLES dydd goe,
And satt hymm downe uponne a stoole,
And teares beganne to flowe.
'Wee all must die,' quod brave Syr CHARLES;
'Whatte bootes ytte howe or whenne;
'Dethe ys the sure, the certaine fate
'Of all wee mortall menne.
'Saye why, my friend, thie honest soul
'Runns overr att thyne eye;
'Is ytte for my most welcome doome
'Thatt thou dost child-lyke crye?
Quod godlie CANYNGE, 'I doe weepe,
'Thatt thou so soone must dye;
'And leave thy sonnes and helpless wyfe;
''Tys thys thatt wettes myne eye.'
'Thenne drie the tears thatt out thyne eye
'From godlie fountaines sprynge;
'Dethe I despise, and alle the power
'Of EDWARDE, traytor kynge.
'Whan throgh the tyrant's welcom means
'I shall resigne my lyfe,
'The Godde I serve wylle soone provyde
'For bothe mye sonnes and wyfe.'
'Before I sawe the lyghtsome sunne,
'Thys was appointed mee;
'Shall mortal manne repyne or grudge
'Whatt Godde ordeynes to bee?
'Howe oft ynne battaile have I stoode,
'Whan thousands dy'd arounde;
'Whan smokynge streemes of crimson bloode
'Imbrew'd the fatten'd grounde.
'How dydd I knowe thatt ev'ry darte,
'Thatt cutte the airie waie,
'Myghte nott fynde passage toe my harte,
'And close myne eyes for aie?
'And shall I nowe, forr feere of dethe,
'Looke wanne and bee dysmayde?
'No! fromm my herte flie childyshe feere,
'Bee alle the manne display'd.
'Ah, goddelyke HENRIE! Godde forefende,
'And guarde thee and thye sonne,
'Yff 'tis hys wylle, but yff 'tis nott,
'Why thenne hys wylle bee donne.
'My honest friende, my faulte has beene
'To serve Godde and mye prynce;
'And thatt I no tyme-server am,
'My dethe wylle soone convynce.
'Ynne Londonne citye was I born;
'Of parents of grete note;
'My fadre dydd a nobile armes
'Emblazon onne hys cote.
'I make ne doubte butt hee ys gone
'Where soone I hope to goe;
'Where wee for ever shall bee blest,
'From oute the reech of woe
'Hee taughte mee justice and the laws
'Wyth pitie to unite;
'And eke hee taughte mee howe to knowe
'The wronge cause fromm the ryghte.
'Hee taughte mee wythe a prudent hande
'To feede the hungrie poore,
'Ne lett mye sarvants dryve awaie
'The hungrie fromme my doore.
'And none can saye, butt alle mye lyfe
'I have hys wordyes kept;
'And summ'd the actyonns of the daie
'Eche nyghte before I slept.
'I have a spouse, goe aske of her,
'Yff I defyl'd her bedde?
'I have a kynge, and none can laie
'Blacke treason onne my hedde.
'Ynne Lent, and onne the holie eve,
'Fromm fleshe I dydd refrayne;
'Whie should I thenne appeare dismay'd
'To leave thys worlde of payne?
'Ne! hapless HENRIE! I rejoyce,
'I shalle ne see thye dethe;
'Moste willynglie ynne thye just cause
'Doe I resign my brethe.
'Oh, fickle people! rewyn'd londe!
'Thou wylt kenne peace ne moe;
'Whyle RICHARD'S sonnes exalt themselyes,
'Thye brookes wythe bloude wylle flowe.
'Saie, were ye tyr'd of godlie peace,
'And godlie HENRIE'S reigne,
'Thatt you dydd choppe youre easie daies
'For those of bloude and peyne?
'Whatte tho' I onne a sledde bee drawne,
'And mangled by a hynde,
'I doe defye the traytor's pow'r,
'Hee can ne harm my mynde;
'Whatte tho', uphoisted onne a pole,
'Mye lymbes shall rotte ynne ayre,
'And ne ryche monument of brasse
'CHARLES BAWDIN'S name shall bear;
'Yett ynne the holie booke above,
'Whyche tyme can't eate awaie,
'There wythe the sarvants of the Lorde
'Mye name shall lyve for aie.
'Thenne welcome dethe! for lyfe eterne
'I leave thys mortall lyfe
'Farewell, vayne worlde, and all that's deare,
'Mye sonnes and lovynge wyfe!
'Nowe dethe as welcome to mee comes,
'As e'er the moneth of Maie;
'Nor woulde I even wyshe to lyve,
'Wyth my dere wyfe to staie.
Quod CANYGE, 'Tys a goodlie thynge
'To bee prepar'd to die;
'And from thys world of peyne and grefe
'To Godde ynne Heav'n to flie.'
And nowe the bell beganne to tolle,
And claryonnes to sounde;
Syr CHARLES hee herde the horses feete
A prauncyng onne the grounde.
And just before the officers,
His lovynge wyfe came ynne,
Weepynge unfeigned teeres of woe,
Wythe loude and dysmalle dynne.
'Sweet FLORENCE! nowe I praie forbere
'Ynne quiet lett mee die;
'Praie Godde, thatt ev'ry Christian soule
'Maye looke onne dethe as I.
'Sweet FLORENCE! why these brinie teeres?
'Theye washe my soule awaie,
'And almost make mee wyshe for lyfe,
'Wyth thee, sweete dame, to staie.
''Tys butt a journie I shall goe
'Untoe the lande of blysse;
'Nowe, as a proof of husbande's love,
'Receive thys holie kysse.'
Thenne FLORENCE, fault'ring ynne her saie,
Tremblynge these wordyes spoke,
'Ah, cruele EDWARDE! bloudie kynge!
'My herte ys welle nyghe broke.
'Ah, sweete Syr CHARLES! why wylt thou goe,
'Wythoute thye lovynge wyfe?
'The cruelle axe thatt cuttes thye necke,
'Ytte eke shall ende mye lyfe.'
And nowe the officers came ynne
To brynge Syr CHARLES awaie
Whoe turnedd toe his lovynge wyfe,
And thus toe her dydd saie
'I goe to lyfe, and nott to dethe;
'Truste thou ynne Godde above,
'And teache thye sonnes to feare the Lorde,
'And ynne theyre hertes hym love.
'Teache them to runne the nobile race
'Thatt I theyre fader runne:
'FLORENCE! shou'd dethe thee take -- adieu!
'Yee officers, leade onne.'
Thenne FLORENCE rav'd as anie madde,
And dydd her tresses tere;
'Oh! staie, mye husbande! lorde! and lyfe!' --
Syr CHARLES thenne dropt a teare.
'Tyll tyredd oute wythe ravynge loud,
Shee fellen onne the floore;
Syr CHARLES exerted alle hys myghte,
And march'd fromm oute the dore.
Uponne a sledde hee mounted thenne
Wythe lookes fulle brave and swete;
Lookes, thatt enshone ne moe concern
Thanne anie ynne the strete.
Before hym went the council-menne,
Ynne scarlett robes and golde
And tassils spanglynge ynne the sunne,
Muche glorious to beholde.
The Freers of Seincte AUGUSTYNE next
Appeared to the fyghte,
Alle cladd ynne homelie russett weedes,
Of godlie monkysh plyghte.
Ynne diffraunt parts a godlie psaume
Moste sweetlie theye dydd chaunt;
Behynde theyre backes syx mynstrelles came,
Who tun'd the strunge bataunt.
Thenne fyve-and-twentye archers came;
Echone the bowe dydd bende,
From rescue of kynge HENRIES friends
Syr CHARLES forr to defend.
Bolde as a lyon came Syr CHARLES;
Drawne onne a clothe-layde sledde,
Bye two blacke stedes ynne trappynges white,
Wyth plumes uponne theyre hedde.
Behynde hym fyve-and-twentye moe
Of archers stronge and stoute,
Wyth bended bowe echone ynne hande,
Marched ynne goodlie route.
Seincte JAMESES Freers marched next,
Echone hys parte dydd chaunt;
Behynde theyre backs syx mynstrelles came,
Who tun'd the strunge bataunt.
Thenne came the maior and eldermenne,
Ynne clothe of scarlett deck't;
And theyre attendyng menne echone,
Lyke Easterne princes trickt.
And after them, a multitude
Of citizenns dydd thronge;
The wyndowes were alle fulle of heddes,
As hee dydd passe alonge.
And whenne hee came to the hyghe crosse,
Syr CHARLES dydd turne and saie,
O Thou, thatt savest manne fromme synne,
Wasshe mye soule clean thys daie!
Att the grete mynsterr wyndowe sat
The kynge ynne myckle state,
To see CHARLES BAWDIN goe alonge,
To hys most welcom fate.
Soone as the sledde drewe nyghe enowe,
Thatt EDWARDE hee myghte heare,
The brave Syr CHARLES hee dydd stande uppe,
And thus hys wordes declare.
'Thou seest me; EDWARDE! traytour vile!
'Expos'd to infamie;
'Butt bee assur'd, disloyall manne
'I'm greaterr nowe thanne thee.
'Bye foule proceedyngs, murdre, bloude,
'Thou wearest nowe a crowne;
'And hast appoynted mee to dye,
'By power nott thyne owne.
'Thou thynkest I shall dye to-daie;
'I have beene dede 'till nowe,
'And soone shall lyve to weare a crowne
'For aie uponne my browe:
'Whylst thou, perhapps, for som few yeares,
'Shalt rule thys fickle lande,
'To lett them knowe howe wyde the rule
'Twixt kynge and tyrant hande:
'Thye pow'r unjust, thou traytour slave!
'Shall falle onne thye owne hedde --'
Fromm out of hearyng of the kynge
Departed thenne the sledde.
Kynge EDWARDE'S soule rush'd to hys face,
Hee turn'd hys hedde awaie,
And to hys broder GLOUCESTER
Hee thus dydd speke and saie.
'To hym that soe-much-dreaded dethe
'Ne ghastlie terrors brynge,
'Beholde the manne! hee spake the truthe,
'Hee's greater thanne a kynge!
'Soe lett hym die!' Duke RICHARD sayde;
'And maye echone oure foes
'Bende downe theyre neckes to bloudie axe,
'And feede the carryon crowes.
And nowe the horses gentlie drewe
Syr CHARLES uppe the hyghe hylle;
The axe dydd glysterr ynne the sunne,
Hys pretious bloude to spylle.
Syrr CHARLES dydd uppe the scaffold goe,
As uppe a gilded carre
Of victorye, bye val'rous chiefs
Gayn'd ynne the bloudie warre.
And to the people hee dydd saie,
'Beholde you see mee dye;
'For servynge loyally mye kynge,
'Mye kynge most rightfullie.
As longe as EDWARDE rules thys lande,
'Ne quiet you wylle knowe;
'Youre sonnes and husbandes shalle bee slayne,
'And brookes wythe bloude shalle flowe.
'You leave youre goode and lawfulle kynge,
'Whenne ynne adversitye;
'Lyke mee, untoe the true cause stycke,
'And for the true cause dye.
Thenne hee, wyth preestes, uponne hys knees,
A pray'r to Godde dydd make,
Beseechynge hym unto hymselfe
Hys partynge soule to take.
Thenne, kneelynge downe, hee layd hys hedde
Most seemlie onne the blocke;
Whyche fromme hys bodie fayre at once
The able heddes-manne stroke:
And oute the bloude beganne to flowe,
And rounde the scaffolde twyne;
And teares, enow to washe't awaie,
Dydd flowe fromme each mann's eyne.
The bloudie axe hys bodie fayre
Ynnto foure parties cutte;
And ev'rye parte, and eke hys hedde,
Uponne a pole was putte.
One parte dydd rotte onne Kynwulph-hylle,
One onne the mynster-tower,
And one from off the castle-gate
The crowen dydd devoure:
The other onne Seyncte Powle's goode gate,
A dreery spectacle;
Hys hedde was plac'd onne the hyghe crosse,
Ynne hyghe-streete most nobile.
Thus was the ende of BAWDIN'S fate:
Godde prosper longe oure kynge,
And grante hee maye, wyth BAWDIN'S soule,
Ynne heav'n Godd's mercie synge!

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Ælla, A Tragical Interlude - Act III

Gentle Egwina, do notte preche me joie;
I cannotte joie ynne anie thynge botte weere .
Oh! yatte aughte schulde oure selynesse destroie,
Floddynge the face wythe woe, and brynie teare!
You muste, you muste endeavour for to cheere
Youre harte unto somme cherisaunied reste.
Youre loverde from the battelle wylle appere,
Ynne honnoure, and a greater love, be dreste:
Botte I wylle call the mynstrelles roundelaie;
Perchaunce the swotie sounde maie chase your wiere awaie.

O! synge untoe mie roundelaie,
O! droppe the blynie teare wythe mee,
Daunce ne moe atte hallie daie,
Lycke a reyneynge ryver bee;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
Blacke hys cryne as the wynter nyghte,
Whyte hys rode as the sommer snowe,
Rodde hys face as the morning lyghte,
Cale he lyes ynne the grave belowe;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
Swote hys tynge as the throstles note,
Quycke ynn daunce as thoughte canne bee,
Defte hys taboure, codgelle stote,
O! hee lyes bie the wyllowe tree:
Mie love ys dedde,
Gonne to hys deathe-bedde,
Alle underre the wyllowe tree.
Harke! the ravenne flappes hys wynge,
In the briered delle belowe;
Harke! the dethe-owle loude dothe synge,
To the nyghte-mares as heie goe;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gonne to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
See! the whyte moone sheenes onne hie;
Whyterre ys mie true loves shroude;
Whyterre yanne the mornynge skie,
Whyterre yanne the evenynge cloude;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
Here, uponne mie true loves grave,
Schalle the baren fleurs be layde,
Nee one hallie Seyncte to save
Al the celness of a mayde.
Mie love ys dedde,
Gonne to hys death-bedde,
Alle under the wyllowe tree.
Wythe mie hondes I'lle dente the brieres
Rounde his hallie corse to gre,
Ouphante fairie, lyghte youre fyres,
Heere mie boddie stylle schalle bee.
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
Comme, wythe acorne-coppe and thorne,
Drayne mie hartys blodde awaie;
Lyfe and all yttes goode I scorne,
Daunce bie nete, or feaste by daie.
My love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.
Waterre wytches, crownede wythe reytes,
Bere mee to yer leathalle tyde.
I die; I comme; mie true love waytes.
Thos the damselle spake, and dyed.
Thys syngeyng haveth whatte coulde make ytte please;
Butte mie uncourtlie shappe benymmes mee of all ease.

CURSE onne mie tardie woundes! brynge mee a stede!
I wylle awaie to Birtha bie thys nyghte;
Albeytte fro mie woundes mie soul doe blede,
I wylle awaie, & die wythynne her syghte.
Brynge mee a stede, wythe eagle-wynges for flyghte;
Swefte as mie wyshe, &, as mie love ys, stronge.
The Danes have wroughte mee myckle woe ynne fyghte,
Inne kepeynge mee from Birtha's armes so longe.
O! whatte a dome was myne, sythe masterie
Canne yeve ne pleasaunce, nor mie londes goode leme myne eie!
Yee goddes, howe ys a loverres temper formed!
Sometymes the samme thynge wylle bothe bane, & blesse;
On tyme encalede yanne bie the same thynge warmd,
Estroughted foorthe, and yanne ybrogten less.
'Tys Birtha's loss whyche doe mie thoughtes possesse;
I wylle, I muste awaie: whie staies mie stede?
Mie huscarles, hyther haste; prepare a dresse,
Whyche couracyers yn hastie journies nede.
O heavens! I I moste awaie to Byrtha eyne,
For yn her lookes I fynde mie beynge doe entwyne.

The worlde ys darke wythe nyghte; the wyndes are stylle;
Fayntelie the mone her palyde lyght makes gleme;
The upryste sprytes the sylente letten fylle,
Wythe ouphant faeryes joynyng ynne the dreme;
The forreste sheenethe wythe the sylver leme;
Now maie mie love be sated ynn yttes treate;
Uponne the lynche of somme swefte reynyng streme,
Att the swote banquette I wylle swotelie eate.
Thys ys the howse; yee hyndes, swythyn appere.

Go telle to Birtha strayte, a straungerr waytethe here.

Celmonde! yee seynctes! I hope thou haste goode newes.
The hope ys loste; for heavie newes prepare.
Is Ælla welle?
Hee lyves; and stylle maie use
The behylte blessynges of a future yeare.
Whatte heavie tydynge thenne have I to feare?
Of whatte mischaunce dydste thou so latelie saie?
For heavie tydynges swythyn nowe prepare.
Ælla sore wounded ys, yn bykerous fraie;
In Wedecester's wallid toune he lyes.
O mie agroted breast!
Wythoute your syghte, he dyes.
Wylle Birtha's presence ethe herr Ælla's payne?
I flie; newe wynges doe from mie schoulders sprynge.
Mit stede wydhoute wylle deftlie beere us twayne.
Oh! I wyll flie as wynde, and no waie lynge;
Sweftlie caparisons for rydynge brynge;
I have a mynde wynged wythe the levyne ploome.
O Ælla, Ælla! dydste thou kenne the stynge,
The whyche doeth canker ynne mie hartys roome,
Thou wouldste see playne thieself the gare to bee;
Aryse, uponne thie love, and flie to meeten mee.
The stede, on whyche I came, ys swefte as ayre;
Mie servytoures doe wayte mee nere the wode;
Swythynne wythe mee unto the place repayre;
To Ælla I wylle gev you conducte goode.
Youre eyne, alyche a baulme, wylle staunche hys bloode,
Holpe oppe hys woundes, and yev hys harte alle cheere;
Uponne your eyne he holdes hys lyvelyhode ;
You doe hys spryte, and alle hys pleasaunce bere.
Comme, lette's awaie, albeytte ytte ys moke,
Yette love wille bee a tore to tourne to feere nyghtes smoke.
Albeytte unwears dyd the welkynn rende,
Reyne, alyche fallynge ryvers, dyd ferse bee,
Erthe wythe the ayre enchased dyd contende,
Everychone breathe of wynde wythe plagues dyd slee,
Yette I to Ælla's eyne eftsoones woulde slee;
Albeytte hawethornes dyd mie fleshe enseme,
Owlettes, wythe scrychynge, shakeynge everyche tree,
And water-neders wrygglynge yn eche streme,
Yette woulde I flie, ne under coverte staie,
Botte seke mie Ælla owte; brave Celmonde, leade the waie.

HEERE ynn yis forreste lette us watche for pree,
Bewreckeynge on oure foemenne oure ylle warre;
Whatteverre schalle be Englysch wee wylle slea,
Spreddynge our ugsomme rennome to afarre.
Ye Dacyanne menne, gyff Dacyanne menne yee are,
Lette nete botte blodde suffycyle for yee bee;
On everich breaste yn gorie letteres scarre,
Whatt sprytes you have, & howe those sprytes maie dree.
And gyf yee gette awaie to Denmarkes shore,
Eftesoones we will retourne, & vanquished bee ne moere.
The battelle loste, a battelle was yndede;
Note queedes hemselfes culde stonde so harde a fraie;
Oure verie armoure, & oure heaulmes dyd blede,
The Dacyannes, sprytes, lyche dewe drops, fledde awaie,
Ytte was an Ælla dyd commaunde the daie;
Ynn spyte of foemanne, I moste saie hys myghte;
Botte wee ynn hynd-lettes blodde the loss wylle paie,
Brynnynge, thatte we knowe howe to wynne yn fyghte;
Wee wylle, lyke wylfes enloosed from chaynes, destroie;--
Oure armoures -- wynter nyghte shotte oute the daie of joie.
Whene swefte-sote tyme doe rolle the daie alonge,
Somme hamlette scalle onto oure fhuyrie brende;
Brastynge alyche a rocke, or mountayne stronge,
The talle chyrche-spyre upon the grene shalle bende;
Wee wylle the walles, & auntyante tourrettes rende,
Pete everych tree whych goldyn fruyte doe beere,
Downe to the goddes the ownerrs dhereof sende,
Besprengynge alle abrode sadde warre & bloddie weere.
Botte fyrste to yynder oke-tree wee wylle flie;
And thence wylle yssue owte onne all yatte commeth bie.

Thys merkness doe affraie mie wommanns breaste.
Howe sable ys the spreddynge skie arrayde!
Hallie the bordeleire, who lyves to reste,
Ne ys att nyghtys flemynge hue dysmayde;
The starres doe scantillie the sable brayde;
Wyde ys the sylver lemes of comforte wove;
Speke, Celmonde, does ytte make thee notte afrayde?
Merker the nyghte, the fitter tyde for love.
Saiest thou for love? ah! love is far awaie.
Faygne would I see once moe the roddie lemes of daie.
Love maie bee nie, woulde Birtha calle ytte here.
How, Celmonde, dothe thou mene?
Thys Celmonde menes.
No leme, no eyne, ne mortalle manne appere,
Ne lyghte, an acte of love for to bewreene;
Nete in thys forreste, botte thys tore , dothe sheene,
Wych, potte oute, do leave the whole yn nyghte;
See! howe the brauncynge trees doe here entwyne,
Makeynge thys bower so pleasynge to the syghte;
Thys was for love fyrste made, and heere ytt stondes,
Thatte hereynne lovers maie enlyncke yn true loves bondes.
Celmonde, speake whatte thou menest, or alse mie thoughtes
Perchance maie robbe thie honestie so fayre.
Then here, and knowe, hereto I have you broughte,
Mie longe hydde love unto you to make clere.
Oh heaven and earthe! whatte ys ytt I doe heare?
Am I betraste ? where ys mie Ælla, saie!
O! do nete nowe to Ælla syke love bere,
Botte geven some onn Celmondes hedde.
I wylle be gone, and groape mie passage out;
Albeytte neders stynges mie legs do twyne aboute.
Nowe bie the seynctes I wylle notte lette thee goe,
Ontylle thou doeste mie brendynge love amate.
Those eyne have caused Celmonde myckle woe,
Yenne lette yer smyle fyrst take hymm yn regrate.
O! didst thou see mie breastis troblous state,
There love doth harrie up mie joie, and ethe!
I wretched bee, beyond the hele of fate,
Gyff Birtha stylle wylle make mie harte-veynes blethe.
Softe as the sommer flowreets, Birtha, looke,
Fulle ylle I canne thie frownes and harde dyspleasaunce brooke.
Thie love ys foule; I woulde bee deafe for aie,
Radher thanne heere syche deslavatie sedde.
Swythynne flie from mee, and ne further saie;
Radher thanne heare thie love, I woulde bee dead.
Yee seynctes! and shal I wronge mie Ælla's bedde,
And wouldst thou, Celmonde, tempte me to the thynge?
Lett mee be gone -- alle curses onne thie hedde!
Was ytte for thys thou dydste a message brynge!
Lette mee be gone, thou manne of sable harte!
Or welkyn and her starres will take a maydens parte.
Sythence you wylle notte lette mie suyte avele,
Mie love wylle have yttes joie, altho wythe guylte;
Youre lymbes shall bende, albeytte strynge as stele;
The merkye seesonne wylle your bloshes hylte .
Holpe, holpe, yee seynctes! oh thatte mie blodde was spylte!
The seynctes att distaunce stonde ynn tyme of nede.
Strev notte to goe; thou canste notte, gyff thou wylle.
Untoe mie wysche bee kinde, and nete alse hede.
No, foule bestoykerre, I wylle rende the ayre,
Tylle dethe do staie mie dynne, or somme kynde roder heare.
Holpe! holpe! oh Godde!

Ah! thatt's a wommanne cries.
I kenn hem; saie, who are you, yatte bee theere?
Yee hyndes, awaie! orre bie thys swerde yee dies.
Thie wordes wylle ne mie hartis sete affere.
Save mee, oh! save mee from thys royner heere!
Stonde thou bie mee; nowe saie thie name and londe;
Or swythyne schall mie swerde thie boddie tare.
Bothe I wylle shewe thee bie mie brondeous honde.
Besette hym rounde, yee Danes.
Comme onne, and see
Gyff mie strynge anlace maie bewryen whatte I bee.

Oh! I forslagen be! ye Danes, now kenne,
I amme yatte Celmonde, seconde yn the fyghte,
Who dydd, atte Watchette, so forslege youre menne;
I fele myne eyne to swymme yn eterne nyghte;--
To her be kynde.

Thenne felle a wordhie knyghte.
Saie, who bee you?
I am greate Ælla's wyfe.
Gyff anenste hym you harboure soule despyte,
Nowe wythe the lethal anlace take mie lyfe,
Mie thankes I ever onne you wylle bestowe,
From ewbryce you mee pyghte, the worste of mortal woe.
I wylle; ytte scalle bee soe: yee Dacyans, heere.
Thys Ælla havethe been oure foe for aie.
Thorrowe the battelle he dyd brondeous teare,
Beyng the lyfe and head of everych fraie;
From everych Dacyanne power he won the daie,
Forslagen Magnus, all oure schippes ybrente;
Bie hys felle arme wee now are made to straie;
The speere of Dacya he ynne pieces shente;
Whanne hantoned barckes unto our londe dyd comme,
Ælla the gare dheie sed, & wysched hym bytter dome.
Bee stylle.
Botte yette he ys a foemanne goode and fayre;
Whanne wee are spente, he soundethe the forloyne;
The captyves chayne he tosseth ynne the ayre,
Cheered the wounded bothe wythe bredde & wyne;
Has hee notte untoe somme of you bynn dygne?
You would have smethd onne Wedecestrian fielde,
Botte hee behylte the slughorne for to cleyne,
Throwynge onne hys wyde backe, hys wyder spreddynge shielde.
Whanne you, as caytysned, yn fielde dyd bee,
Hee oathed you to bee stylle, & strayte dydd sette you free.
Scalle wee forslege hys wyfe, because he's brave?
Bicaus hee syghteth for hys countryes gare?
Wylle hee, who havith bynne yis Ælla's slave,
Robbe hym of whatte percase he holdith deere?
Or scalle we menne of mennys sprytes appere,
Doeynge hym favoure for hys favoure donne,
Swefte to hys pallace thys damoiselle bere,
Bewrynne oure case, and to oure waie be gonne?
The last you do approve; so lette ytte bee;
Damoyselle, comme awaie; you safe scalle bee wythe mee.
Al blessynges maie the seynctes unto yee gyve!
Al pleasaunce maie youre longe-straughte livynges bee!
Ælla, whanne knowynge thatte bie you I lyve,
Wylle thyncke too smalle a guyfte the londe & lea.
O Celmonde! I maie deftlie rede bie the;
Whatte ille betydethe the enfouled kynde;
Maie ne thie cross-stone of thie cryme bewree!
Maie alle menne ken thie valoure, fewe thie mynde!
Soldyer! for syke thou arte ynn noble fraie,
I wylle thie goinges 'tende, & doe thou lede the waie.
The mornynge 'gyns alonge the Easte to sheene;
Darklinge the lyghte doe onne the waters plaie;
The seynte rodde leme slowe creepeth oere the green;
Toe chase the merkyness of nyghte awaie;
Swifte flies the howers thatte wylle brynge oute the daie;
The softe dewe falleth onne the greeynge grasse;
The shepster mayden, dyghtynge her arraie,
Scante sees her vysage yn the wavie glasse;
Bie the fulle daylieghte wee scalle Ælla see,
Or Brystowes wallyd towne; damoyselle, followe mee.

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Ælla, A Tragical Interlude - Act I

Before yonne roddie sonne has droove hys wayne
Throwe halfe hys joornie, dyghte yn gites of goulde,
Mee, happeless mee, hee wylle a wretche behoulde,
Mieselfe, and al that's myne, bounde ynn myschaunces chayne.
Ah! Birtha, whie dydde Nature frame thee fayre?
Whie art thou all thatt poyntelle canne bewreene ?
Whie art thou nott as coarse as odhers are?--
Butte thenn thie soughle woulde throwe thy vysage sheene,
Yatt shemres onn thie comelie semlykeene,
Lyche nottebrowne cloudes, whann bie the sonne made redde,
Orr scarlette, wythe waylde lynnen clothe ywreene ,
Syke would thie spryte uponn thie vysage spredde.
Thys daie brave Ælla dothe thyne honde and harte
Clayme as hys owne to be, whyche nee from hys moste parte.
And cann I lyve to see herr wythe anere?
Ytt cannotte, muste nott, naie, ytt shalle not bee.
Thys nyghte I'll putte stronge poysonn ynn the beere,
And hymm, herr, and myselfe, attenes wyll slea.
Assyst mee, Helle! lett Devylles rounde mee tende,
To slea mieself, mie love, & eke mie doughtie friende.

Notte, whanne the hallie prieste dyd make me knyghte,
Blessynge the weaponne, tellynge future dede,
Howe bie mie honde the prevyd Dane should blede,
Howe I schulde often bee, and often wynne, ynn fyghte;
Notte, whann I fyrste behelde thie beauteous hue,
Whyche strooke mie mynde, and rouzed mie softer soule;
Nott, whann from the barbed horse yn fyghte dyd viewe
The flying Dacians oere the wyde playne roule,
Whan all the troopes of Denmarque made grete dole,
Dydd I fele joie wyth syke reddoure as nowe,
Whan hallie preest, the lechemanne of the soule,
Dydd knytte us both ynn a caytysnede vowe:
Now hallie Ælla's selynesse ys grate;
Shap haveth nowe ymade hys woes for to emmate .
Mie lorde, and husbande, syke a joie ys myne;
Botte mayden modestie moste ne soe saie,
Albeytte thou mayest rede ytt ynn myne eyne,
Or ynn myne harte, where thou shalte be for aie;
Inne sothe, I have butte meeded oute thie faie;
For twelve tymes twelve the mone hathe bin yblente,
As manie tymes hathe vyed the Godde of daie,
And on the grasse her lemes of sylverr sente,
Sythe thou dydst cheese mee for thie swote to bee,
Enactynge ynn the same moste faiefullie to mee.
Ofte have I scene thee atte the none-daie feaste,
Whanne deysde bie thieselfe, for want of pheeres,
Awhylst thie merryemen dydde laughe and jeaste,
Onn mee thou semest all eyne, to mee all eares,
Thou wardest mee as gyff ynn hondred feeres,
Alest a daygnous looke to thee be sente,
And offrendes made mee, moe thann yie compheeres,
Offe scarpes of scarlette, and fyne paramente ;
All thie yntente to please was lyssed to mee,
I saie ytt, I moste streve thatt you ameded bee.
Mie lyttel kyndnesses whyche I dydd doe,
Thie gentleness doth corven them so grete,
Lyche bawsyn olyphauntes mie gnattes doe shewe;
Thou doest mie thoughtes of paying love amate ;
Butte hann mie actyonns straughte the rolle of fate,
Pyghte thee fromm Hell, or broughte Heaven down to thee,
Layde the whol worlde a falldstole atte thie feete,
On smyle would be suffycyll mede for mee.
I amm Loves borro'r, and canne never paie,
Botte be hys borrower stylle, and thyne, mie swete, for aie.
Love, doe notte rate your achevmentes soe small;
As I to you, syke love untoe mee beare;
For nothynge paste wille Birtha ever call,
Ne on a foode from Heaven thynke to cheere.
As farr as thys frayle brutylle flesch wyll spere,
Syke, and ne fardher I expecte of you;
Be notte toe slacke yn love, ne overdeare;
A smalle fyre, yan a loude flame, proves more true.
Thie gentle wordis doe thie volunde kenne
To bee moe clergionde thann ys ynn meyncte of menne.

Alle blessynges showre on gentle Ælla's hedde!
Oft maie the moon, yn sylverr sheenynge lyghte,
Inn varied chaunges varyed blessynges shedde,
Besprengeynge far abrode mischaunces nyghte;
And thou, fayre Birtha! thou, fayre Dame, so bryghte,
Long mayest thou wyth Ælla fynde much peace,
Wythe selynesse, as wyth a roabe, be dyghte,
Wyth everych chaungynge mone new joies encrease!
I, as a token of mie love to speak,
Have brought you jubbes of ale, at nyghte youre brayne to breake.
Whan sopperes paste we'll drenche youre ale soe stronge,
Tyde lyfe, tyde death.
Ye Mynstrelles, chaunt your songe.
Mynstrelles Songe, bie a Manne and Womanne.
Tourne thee to thie Shepsterr swayne;
Bryghte sonne has ne droncke the dewe
From the floures of yellowe hue;
Tourne thee, Alyce, back again.
No, bestoikerre, I wylle goe
Softlie tryppynge o'ere the mees,
Lyche the sylver-footed doe,
Seekeynge shelterr yn grene trees.
See the moss growne daisey'd banke,
Pereynge ynne the streme belowe;
Here we'lle sytte, yn dewie danke;
Tourne thee, Alyce, do notte goe.
I've hearde erste mie grandame saie,
Yonge damoyselles schulde ne bee,
Inne the swotie monthe of Maie,
Wythe yonge menne bie the grene wode tree.
Sytte thee, Alyce, sytte, and harke,
Howe the ouzle chauntes hys noate,
The chelandree, greie morn larke,
Chauntynge from theyre lyttel throate;
I heare them from eche grene wode tree,
Chauntynge owte so blatauntlie,
Tellynge lecturnyes to mee,
Myscheefe ys whanne you are nygh.
See alonge the mees so grene
Pied daisies, kynge-coppes swote;
Alle we see, bie non bee seene,
Nete botte shepe settes here a fote.
Shepster swayne,you tare mie gratche.
Oute uponne ye! lette me goe.
Leave me swythe, or I'lle alatche.
Robynne, thys youre dame shall knowe.
See! the crokynge brionie
Rounde the popler twyste hys spraie;
Rounde the oake the greene ivie
Florryshcethe and lyveth aie.
Lette us seate us bie thys tree,
Laughe, and synge to lovynge ayres;
Comme, and doe notte coyen bee;
Nature made all thynges bie payres.
Drooried cattes wylle after kynde;
Gentle doves wylle kyss and coe:
Botte manne, hee moste be ywrynde,
Tylle syr preeste make on of two.
Tempte me ne to the foule thynge;
I wylle no mannes lemanne be;
Tyll syr preeste hys songe doethe synge,
Thou shalt neere fynde aught of mee.
Bie our ladie her yborne,
To-morrowe, soone as ytte ys daie,
I'lle make thee wyfe, ne bee forsworne,
So tyde me lyfe or dethe for aie.
Whatt dothe lette, botte thatte nowe
Wee attenes , thos honde yn honde,
Unto divinstre goe,
And bee lyncked yn wedlocke bonde?
I agree, and thus I plyghte
Honde, and harte, and all that's myne;
Goode syr Rogerr, do us ryghte,
Make us one, at Cothbertes shryne.
We wylle ynn a bordelle lyve,
Hailie, thoughe of no estate;
Everyche clocke moe love shall gyve;
Wee ynn godenesse wylle be greate.
I lyche thys songe, I lyche ytt myckle well;
And there ys monie for yer syngeynge nowe;
Butte have you noone thatt marriage-blessynges telle?
In marriage, blessynges are botte fewe, I trowe.
Laverde , wee have; and, gyff you please, wille synge,
As well as owre choughe-voices wylle permytte.
Comme then, and see you swotelie tune the strynge,
And stret, and engyne all the human wytte,
Toe please mie dame.
We'lle strayne owre wytte and synge.
Mynstrelles Songe.
The boddynge flourettes bloshes atte the lyghte;
The mees be sprenged wyth the yellowe hue;
Ynn daiseyd mantels ys the mountayne dyghte;
The nesh yonge coweslepe bendethe wyth the dewe;
The trees enlefed, yntoe Heavenne straughte,
Whenn gentle wyndes doe blowe, to whestlyng dynne ys brought.
The evenynge commes, and brynges the dewe alonge,
The roddie welkynne sheeneth to the eyne;
Arounde the alestake Mynstrells synge the songe;
Yonge ivie rounde the doore poste do entwyne;
I laie mee onn the grasse; yette, to mie wylle,
Albeytte alle ys fayre, there lackethe somethynge stylle.
So Adam thoughtenne, whann, ynn Paradyse,
All Heavenn and Erthe dyd hommage to hys mynde;
Ynn Womman alleyne mannes pleasaunce lyes;
As Instrumentes of joie were made the kynde.
Go, take a wyfe unto thie armes, and see
Wynter, and brownie hylles, wyll have a charme for thee.
Whanne Autumpne blake and sonne-brente doe appere,
With hys goulde honde guylteynge the falleynge lefe,
Bryngeynge oppe Wynterr to folfylle the yere,
Beerynge uponne hys backe the riped shefe;
Whan al the hyls wythe woddie sede ys whyte;
Whanne levynne-fyres and lemes do mete from far the syghte;
Whann the fayre apple, rudde as even skie,
Do bende the tree unto the fructyle grounde,
When joicie peres, and berries of blacke die,
Doe daunce yn ayre, and call the eyne arounde;
Thann, bee the even foule, or even fayre,
Meethynckes mie hartys joie ys steynced wyth some care.
Angelles bee wrogte to bee of neidher kynde;
Angelles alleyne fromme chafe desyre bee free;
Dherre ys a somewhatte evere yn the mynde,
Yatte, wythout wommanne, cannot stylled bee;
Ne seyncte yn celles, botte, havynge blodde and tere,
Do fynde the spryte to joie on fyghte of womanne fayre.
Wommen bee made, notte for hemselves, botte manne,
Bone of hys bone, and chyld of hys desire;
Fromme an ynutyle membere fyrste beganne,
Yrwoghte with moche of water, lyttele fyre;
Therefore theie seke the fyre of love, to hete
The milkyness of kynde, and make hemselfes complete.
Albeytte, wythout wommen, menne were pheeres
To salvage kynde, and wulde botte lyve to slea,
Botte wommenne efte the spryghte of peace so cheres,
Tochelod yn Angel joie heie Angeles bee;
Go, take thee swythyn to thie bedde a wyfe,
Bee bante or blessed hie, yn proovynge marryage lyfe.
Anodher Mynstrelles Songe, bie Syr Thybbot Gorges.
As Elynour bie the green lesselle was syttynge,
As from the sones hete she harried,
She sayde, as herr whytte hondes whyte hosen was knyttynge,
Whatte pleasure ytt ys to be married!
Mie husbande, Lorde Thomas, a forrester boulde,
As ever clove pynne, or the baskette,
Does no cherysauncys from Elynour houlde,
I have ytte as soone as I aske ytte.
Whann I lyved wyth mie fadre yn merrie Clowd-dell,
Tho' twas at my liefe to mynde spynnynge,
I stylle wanted somethynge, botte whatte ne coulde telle,
Mie lorde fadres barbde haulle han ne wynnynge.
Eche mornynge I ryse, doe I sette mie maydennes,
Somme to spynn, somme to curdell, somme bleachynge,
Gyff any new entered doe aske for mie aidens,
Thann swythynne you fynde mee a teachynge.
Lorde Walterre, mie fadre, he loved me welle,
And nothynge unto mee was nedeynge,
Botte schulde I agen goe to merrie Cloud-dell,
In sothen twoulde bee wythoute redeynge.
Shee sayde, and lorde Thomas came over the lea,
As hee the fatte derkynnes was chacynge,
Shee putte uppe her knyttynge, and to hym wente shee;
So wee leave hem bothe kyndelie embracynge.
I lyche eke thys; goe ynnn untoe the feaste;
Wee wylle permytte you antecedente bee;
There swotelie synge eche carolle, and yaped jeaste;
And there ys monnie, that you merrie bee;
Comme, gentle love, wee wylle toe spouse-feaste goe,
And there ynn ale and wyne bee dreyncted everych woe.

Ælla, the Danes ar thondrynge onn our coaste;
Lyche scolles of locusts, caste oppe bie the sea,
Magnus and Hurra, wythe a doughtie hoaste,
Are ragyng, to be quansed bie none botte thee;
Haste, swyfte as Levynne to these royners flee:
Thie dogges alleyne can tame thys ragynge bulle.
Haste swythyn, fore anieghe the towne theie bee,
And Wedecesterres rolle of dome bee fulle.
Haste, haste, O Ælla, to the byker flie,
For yn a momentes space tenne thousand menne maie die.
Beshrew thee for thie newes! I moste be gon.
Was ever lockless dome so hard as myne!
Thos from dysportysmente to warr to ron,
To chaunge the selke veste for the gaberdyne!
O! lyche a nedere, lette me rounde thee twyne,
And hylte thie boddie from the schaftes of warre.
Thou shalte nott, must not, from thie Birtha ryne,
Botte kenn the dynne of slughornes from afarre.
O love, was thys thie joie, to shewe the treate,
Than groffyshe to forbydde thie hungred guestes to eate?
O mie upswalynge harte, whatt wordes can saie
The peynes, thatte passethe ynn mie soule ybrente?
Thos to bee torne uponne mie spousalle daie,
O! 'tys a peyne beyond entendemente.
Yee mychtie Goddes, and is yor favoures sente
As thous faste dented to a load of peyne?
Moste we ale holde yn chace the shade content,
And for a bodykin a swarthe obteyne?
O whie, yee seynctes, oppress yee thos mie sowle?
How shalle I speke mie woe, mie freme, mie dreerie dole?
Sometyme the wyseste lacketh pore mans rede.
Reasonne and counynge wytte efte flees awaie.
Thann, loverde, lett me saie, wyth hommaged drede
(Bieneth your fote ylayn) mie counselle saie;
Gyff thos we lett the matter lethlen laie,
The foemenn, everych honde-poyncte, getteth fote.
Mie loverde, lett the speere-menne, dyghte for fraie,
And all the sabbataners goe aboute.
I speke, mie loverde, alleyne to upryse
Youre wytte from marvelle, and the warriour to alyse.
Ah! nowe thou pottest takells yn mie harte;
Mie soulghe dothe nowe begynne to see herselle;
I wylle upryse mie myghte, and doe mie parte,
To slea the foemenne yn mie furie felle.
Botte howe canne tynge mie rampynge fourie telle,
Whyche ryseth from mie love to Birtha fayre?
Ne could the queede, and ale the myghte of Helle,
Founde out impleasaunce of syke blacke a geare.
Yet I wylle bee mieselfe, and rouze mie spryte
To act wythe rennome, and goe meet the bloddie fyghte.
No, thou schalte never leave thie Birtha's syde;
Ne schall the wynde uponne us blowe alleyne;
I, lyche a nedre, wylle untoe thee byde;
Tyde lyfe, tyde deathe, ytte shall behoulde us twayne.
I have mie parte of drierie dole and peyne;
Itte brasteth from mee atte the holtred eyne;
Ynne tydes of teares mie swarthynge spryte wylle drayne,
Gyff drerie dole ys thyne, tys twa tymes myne.
Goe notte, O Ælla; wythe thie Birtha staie;
For wyth thie semmlykeed mie spryte wyll goe awaie.
O! tys for thee, for thee alleyne I fele;
Yett I muste bee mieselfe; with valoures gear
I'lle dyghte mie hearte, and notte mie lymbes yn stele,
And thake the bloddie swerde and steyned spere.
Can Ælla from hys breaste hys Birtha teare?
Is shee so rou and ugsomme to hys syghte?
Entrykeynge wyght! ys leathall warre so deare?
Thou pryzest mee belowe the joies of fyghte.
Thou scalte notte leave mee, albeytte the erthe
Hang pendaunte bie thie swerde, and craved for thy morthe.
Dyddest thou kenne howe mie woes, as starres ybrente,
Headed bie these thie wordes doe onn mee falle,
Thou woulde stryve to gyve mie harte contente,
Wakyng mie slepynge mynde to honnoures calle.
Of selynesse I pryze thee moe yan all
Heaven can mee sende, or counynge wytt acquyre,
Yette I wylle leave thee, onne the foe to falle,
Retournynge to thie eyne with double fyre.
Moste Birtha boon requeste and bee denyd?
Receyve attenes a darte yn selynesse and pryde?
Doe staie, att leaste tylle morrowes sonne apperes.
Thou kenneste welle the Dacyannes myttee powere;
Wythe them a mynnute wurchethe bane for yeares;
Theie undoe reaulmes wythyn a syngle hower,
Rouze all thie honnoure, Birtha; look attoure
Thie bledeynge countrie, whych for hastie dede
Calls, for the rodeynge of some doughtie power,
To royn yttes royners, make yttes foemenne blede.
Rouze all thie love; false and entrykyng wyghte!
Ne leave thie Birtha thos uponne pretence of fyghte.
Thou nedest notte goe, untyll thou haste command
Under the sygnette of oure lorde the kynge.
And wouldest thou make me then a recreande?
Hollie Seyncte Marie, keepe mee from the thynge!
Heere, Birtha, thou hast potte a double stynge,
One for thie love, anodher for thie mynde.
Agylted Ælla, thie abredynge blynge .
Twas love of thee thatte foule intente ywrynde.
Yette heare mie supplycate, to mee attende,
Hear from mie groted harte the lover and the friende.
Lett Celmonde yn thie armour-brace be dyghte;
And yn thie stead unto the battle goe;
Thie name alleyne wylle putte the Danes to flyghte,
The ayre thatt beares ytt woulde presse downe the foe.
Birtha, yn vayne thou wouldste mee recreand doe;
I moste, I wylle, fyghte for mie countries wele,
And leave thee for ytt. Celmonde, sweftlie goe,
Telle mie Brystowans to bedyghte yn stele;
Tell hem I scorne to kenne hem from afar,
Botte leave the vyrgyn brydall bedde for bedde of warre.

And thou wylt goe; O mie agroted harte!
Mie countrie waites mie marche; I muste awaie;
Albeytte I schulde goe to mete the darte
Of certen Dethe, yette here I woulde notte staie.
Botte thos to leave thee, Birtha, dothe asswaie
Moe torturynge peynes yanne canne be sedde bie tyngue,
Yette rouze thie honoure uppe, and, wayte the daie,
Whan rounde aboute mee songe of warre heie synge.
O Birtha, strev mie agreeme to accaie
And joyous see mie armes, dyghte oute ynn warre arraie.
Difficile ys the pennaunce, yette I'lle strev
To keepe mie woe behyltren yn mie breaste.
Albeytte nete maye to mee pleasaunce yev,
Lyche thee, I'lle strev to sette mie mynde atte reste.
Yett oh! forgeve, yff I have thee dystreste;
Love, doughtie love, wylle beare no odher swaie.
Juste as I was wythe Ælla to be bleste,
Shappe foullie thos hathe snatched hym awaie.
It was a tene too doughtie to bee borne,
Wydhoute an ounde of teares and breaste wyth syghes ytorne.
Thie mynde ys now thie selfe; why wylte thou bee
All blanch; al kyngelie, all soe wyse yn mynde,
Alleyne to lett pore wretched Ælla see,
Whatte wondrous bighes he nowe muste leave behynde?
O Birtha fayre, warde everyche commynge wynde,
On everych wynde I wylle a token sende;
Onn mie longe shielde ycorne thie name thoul't fynde.
Butte here commes Celmonde, wordhie knyghte and friende.

The Brystowe knyghtes for thie forth-comynge lynge
Echone athwarte hys backe hys longe warre-shield dothe flynge.
Birtha, adieu; but yette I cannotte goe.
Lyfe of mie spryte, mie gentle Ælla staie,
Engyne mee notte wyth syke a drierie woe.
I muste, I wylle; tys honnoure cals awaie.
O mie agroted harte, braste, braste ynn twaie.
Ælla, for honnoure, flyes awaie from mee.
Birtha, adieu; I maie notte here obaie.
I'm flyynge from mieselfe yn flying thee.

O Ælla, housband, friend, and loverde, staie.
He's gon, he's gone, alass! percase he's gone for aie.

Hope, hallie suster, sweepeynge thro' the skie,
In crowne of goulde, and robe of lillie whyte,
Whych farre abrode ynne gentle ayre do flie,
Meetynge from distaunce the enjoyous fyghte,
Albeytte efte thou taken thie hie flyghte
Hecket ynne a myste, and wyth thyne eyne yblente,
Nowe commest thou to mee wythe starrie lyghte;
Ontoe thie veste the rodde sonne ys adente ;
The Sommer tyde, the month of Maie appere,
Depycte wythe skyledd honde uponn thie wyde aumere.
I from a nete of hopelen am adawed,
Awhaped atte the fetyveness of daie;
Ælla, bie nete moe thann hys myndbruche awed,
Is gone, and I moste followe, toe the fraie.
Celmonde canne ne'er from anie byker staie.
Dothe warre begynne? theres Celmonde yn the place.
Bone whanne the warre ys donne, I'll haste awaie.
The reste from nethe tymes masque must shew yttes face.
I see onnombered joies around mee ryse;
Blake stondethe future doome, and joie dothe mee alyse.
O honnoure, honnoure, whatt ys bie thee hanne?
Hallie the robber and the bordelyer,
Who kens ne thee, or ys to thee bestanne,
And nothynge does thie myckle gastness fere.
Faygne would I from mie bosomme alle thee tare.
Thou there dysperpellest thie levynne-bronde;
Whyllest mie soulgh's forwyned, thou art the gare;
Sleene ys mie comforte bie thie ferie honde;
As somme talle hylle, whann wynds doe shake the ground,
Itte kerveth all abroade, bie brasteynge hyltren wounde.
Honnoure, whatt bee ytte? tys a shadowes shade,
A thynge of wychencref, an idle dreme;
On of the fonnis whych the clerche have made
Menne wydhoute sprytes, and wommen for to fleme;
Knyghtes, who efte kenne the loude dynne of the beme,
Schulde be forgarde to syke enfeeblynge waies,
Make everych acte, alyche theyr soules, be breme,
And for theyre chyvalrie alleyne have prayse.
O thou, whatteer thie name,
Or Zabalus or Queed,
Comme, steel mie sable spryte,
For fremde and dolefulle dede.

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Ælla, A Tragical Interlude - Act II

MAGNUS, HURRA, and HIE PREESTE, wyth the ARMIE, neare Watchette.
Swythe lette the offrendes to the Goddes begynne,
To knowe of hem the issue of the fyghte.
Potte the blodde-steyned sword and pavyes ynne;
Spreade swythyn all arounde the hallie lyghte.
HIE PREESTE syngeth.
Yee, who hie yn mokie ayre
Delethe seasonnes foule or fayre,
Yee, who, whanne yee weere agguylte,
The mone yn bloddie gytelles hylte,
Mooved the starres, and dyd unbynde
Everyche barriere to the wynde;
Whanne the oundynge waves dystreste,
Storven to be overest,
Sockeynge yn the spyre-gyrte towne,
Swolterynge wole natyons down;
Sendynge dethe, on plagues astrodde,
Moovynge lyke the erthys Godde;
To mee send your heste dyvyne,
Lyghte eletten all myne eyne,
Thatt I maie now undevyse
All the actyonnes of th'emprize.

Thus sayethe the Goddes; goe, yssue to the playne;
Forr there shall meynte of mytte menn be slayne.
Whie, soe there evere was, whanne Magnus foughte.
Efte have I treynted noyance throughe the hoaste,
Athorowe swerdes, alyche the Queed dystraughte,
Have Magnus pressynge wroghte hys foemen loaste.
As whanne a tempeste vexethe soare the coaste,
The dyngeynge ounde the sandeie stronde doe tare,
So dyd I inne the warre the javlynne toste,
Full meynte a champyonnes breaste received mie spear.
Mie sheelde, lyche sommere morie gronfer droke,
Mie lethalle speere, alych a levyn-mylted oke.
Thus sayethe the Goddes; goe, yssue to the playne;
Forr there shall meynte of mytte menn be slayne.
Whie, soe there evere was, whanne Magnus foughte.
Efte have I treynted noyance throughe the hoaste,
Athorowe swerdes, alyche the Queed dystraughte,
Have Magnus pressynge wroghte hys foemen loaste.
As whanne a tempeste vexethe soare the coaste,
The dyngeynge ounde the sandeie stronde doe tare,
So dyd I inne the warre the javlynne toste,
Full meynte a champyonnes breaste received mie spear.
Mie sheelde, lyche sommere morie gronfer droke,
Mie lethalle speere, alych a levyn-mylted oke.
Thie wordes are greate, full of hyghe sound, and eeke
Lyche thonderre, to the whych dothe comme no rayne.
Itte lacketh notte a doughtie honde to speke;
The cocke saiethe drefte , yett armed ys he alleyne.
Certis thie wordes maie, thou motest have sayne
Of mee, and meynte of woe, who eke canne fyghte,
Who haveth trodden downe the adventayle,
And tore the heaulmes from heades of myckle myghte.
Sythence syke myghte ys placed yn thie honde,
Lette blowes thie actyons speeke, and bie thie corrage stonde.
Thou are a warrioure, Hurra, thatte I kenne,
And myckle famed for thie handie dede.
Thou fyghtest anente maydens and ne menne,
Nor aie thou makest armed hartes to blede.
Efte I, caparyson'd on bloddie stede,
Havethe thee seene binethe mee ynn the fyghte,
Wythe corses I investynge everich mede,
And thou aston, and wondrynge at mie myghte.
Thanne wouldest thou comme yn for mie renome,
Albeytte thou wouldst reyne awaie from bloddie dome?
How! butte bee bourne mie rage. I kenne aryghte
Bothe thee and thyne maie ne bee wordhye peene.
Eftsoones I hope wee scalle engage yn fyghte;
Thanne to the souldyers all thou wylte bewreene.
I'll prove mie courage onne the burled greene;
Tys there alleyne I'll telle thee whatte I bee.
Gyf I weelde notte the deadlie sphere adeene,
Thanne lett mie name be fulle as lowe as thee.
Thys mie adented shielde, thys mie warre-speare,
Schalle telle the falleynge foe gyf Hurra's harte can feare.
Magnus woulde speke, butte thatte hys noble spryte
Dothe soe enrage, he knowes notte whatte to saie.
He'dde speke yn blowes, yn gottes of blodde he'd wryte,
And on thie heafod peyncte hys myghte for aie
Gyf thou anent an wolfynnes rage wouldest staie,
'Tys here to meet ytt; botte gyff nott, bee goe;
Lest I in furrie shulde mie armes dysplaie,
Whyche to thie boddie wylle wurche myckle woe.
Oh! I bee madde, dystraughte wyth brendyng rage;
Ne seas of smethynge gore wylle mie chafed harte asswage.
I kenne thee, Magnus, welle; a wyghte thou art
That doest aslee alonge ynn doled dystresse,
Strynge bulle yn boddie, lyoncelle yn harte,
I almost wysche thie prowes were made lesse.
Whan Ælla (name drest uppe yn ugsomness
To thee and recreandes ) thondered on the playne,
Howe dydste thou thorowe fyrste of fleers presse!
Swefter thanne federed takelle dydste thou reyne.
A ronnynge pryze onn seyncte daie to ordayne,
Magnus, and none botte hee, the ronnynge pryze wylle gayne.
Eternalie plagues devour thie baned tyngue!
Myriades of neders pre upponne thie spryte!
Maiest thou fele all the peynes of age whylst yynge,
Unmanned, uneyned, exclooded aie the lyghte,
Thie senses, lyche thieselfe, enwrapped yn nyghte,
A scoff to foemen & to beastes a pheere;
Maie furched levynne onne thie head alyghte,
Maie on thee falle the fhuyr of the unweere;
Fen vaipoures blaste thie everiche manlie powere,
Maie thie bante boddie quycke the wolsome peenes devoure.
Faygne woulde I curse thee further, botte mie tyngue
Denies mie harte the favoure soe toe doe.
Nowe bie the Dacyanne goddes, & Welkyns kynge,
Wythe fhurie, as thou dydste begynne, persue;
Calle on mie heade all tortures that bee rou,
Bane onne, tylle thie owne tongue thie curses fele.
Sende onne mie heade the blyghteynge levynne blewe,
The thonder loude, the swellynge azure rele .
Thie wordes be hie of dynne, botte nete besyde;
Bane on, good chieftayn, fyghte wythe wordes of myckle pryde.
Botte doe notte waste thie breath, lest Ælla come.
Ælla & thee togyder synke toe helle!
Bee youre names blasted from the rolle of dome!
I feere noe Ælla, thatte thou kennest welle.
Unlydgefulle traytoure, wylt thou nowe rebelle?
'Tys knowen, thatte yie menn bee lyncked to myne,
Bothe sente, as troopes of wolves, to sletre felle;
Botte nowe thou lackest hem to be all yyne.
Now; bie the goddes yatte reule the Dccyanne state,
Speacke thou yn rage once moe, I wyll thee dysregate.
I pryze thie threattes joste as I doe thie banes,
The sede of malyce and recendize al.
Thou arte a steyne unto the name of Danes;
Thou alleyne to thie tyngue for proose canst calle.
Thou beest a worme so groffile and so smal,
I wythe thie bloude woulde scorne to foul mie sworde,
Botte wythe thie weaponnes woulde upon thee fall;
Alyche thie owne feare, slea thee wythe a worde
I Hurra amme miesel, & aie wylle bee,
As greate yn valourous actes, & yn commande as thee.

Blynne your contekions chiefs; for, as I stode
Uponne mie watche, I spiede an armie commynge,
Notte lyche ann handfulle of a fremded foe,
Botte blacke wythe armoure, movynge ugsomlie,
Lyche a blacke fulle cloude, thatte dothe goe alonge
To droppe yn hayle, & hele the thonder storme.
Ar there meynte of them?
Thycke as the ante-flyes ynne a sommer's none,
Seemynge as tho' theie stynge as persante too.
Whatte matters thatte? lettes sette oure warr-arraie.
Goe, sounde the beme, lette champyons prepare
Ne doubtynge, we wylle stynghe as faste as heie.
Whatte? doest forgard thie blodde? ys ytte for feare?
Wouldest thou gayne the towne, & castle-stere,
And yette ne byker wythe the soldyer guarde?
Go, hyde thee ynn mie tente annethe the lere;
I of thie boddie wylle keepe watche & warde.
Oure goddes of Denmarke know mie harte ys goode.
For nete uppon the erthe, botte to be choughens foode.

As from mie towre I kende the commynge foe,
I spied the crossed shielde, & bloddie swerde,
The furyous Ælla's banner; wythynne kenne
The armie ys. Dysorder throughe oure hoaste
Is fleynge, borne onne wynges of Ælla's name;
Styr, styr, mie lordes!
What? Ælla? & soe neare?
Thenne Denmarques roiend; oh mie rysynge feare!
What doeste thou mene? thys Ælla's botte a manne.
Nowe bie mie sworde, thou arte a verie berne .
Of late I dyd thie creand valoure scanne,
Whanne thou dydst boaste soe moche of actyon derne.
Botte I toe warr mie doeynges moste atturne,
To cheere the Sabbataneres to deere dede.
I to the knyghtes onne everyche syde wylle burne,
Telleynge 'hem alle to make her foemen blede;
Sythe shame or deathe onne eidher syde wylle bee,
Mie harte I wylle upryse, & inne the battelle slea.

NOW havynge done oure mattynes & oure vowes,
Lette us for the intended fyghte be boune,
And everyche champyone potte the joyous crowne
Of certane masterschyppe upon hys glestreynge browes.
As for mie harte, I owne ytt ys, as ere
Itte has beene ynne the sommer-sheene of fate,
Unknowen to the ugsomme gratche of fere;
Mie blodde emboilen, wythe masterie elate,
Boyles ynne mie veynes, & rolles ynn rapyd state,
Impatyente forr to mete the persante stele,
And telle the worlde, thatte Ælla dyed as greate
As anie knyghte who foughte for Englondes weale.
Friends, kynne, & soldyerres, ynne blacke armore drere,
Mie actyons ymytate, mie presente redynge here.
There ys ne house, athrow thys shap-scurged isle,
Thatte has ne loste a kynne yn these fell fyghtes,
Fatte blodde has sorfeeted the hongerde soyle,
And townes enlowed lemed oppe the nyghtes.
Inne gyte of fyre oure hallie churche dheie dyghtes;
Oure sonnes lie storven ynne theyre smethynge gore;
Oppe bie the rootes oure tree of lyfe dheie pyghtes,
Vexynge oure coaste, as byllowes doe the shore.
Yet menne, gyf ye are menne, displaie yor name,
Ybrende yer tropes, alyche the roarynge tempest flame.
Ye Chrystyans, doe as wordhie of the name;
These roynerres of oure hallie houses slea;
Braste, lyke a cloude, from whence doth come the flame.
Lyche torrentes, gushynge downe the mountaines, bee.
And whanne alonge the grene yer champyons flee,
Swefte as the rodde for-weltrynge levyn-bronde,
Yatte hauntes the flyinge mortherer oere the lea,
Soe flie oponne these royners of the londe.
Lette those yatte are unto yer battayles fledde,
Take slepe eterne uponne a feerie lowynge bedde.
Let cowarde Londonne see herre towne onn fyre,
And strev wythe goulde to staie the royners honde,
Ælla & Brystowe havethe thoughtes thattes hygher,
Wee fyghte notte forr ourselves, botte all the londe.
As Severnes hyger lyghethe banckes of sonde,
Pressynge ytte downe binethe the reynynge streme,
Wythe dreerie dynn enswolters the hyghe stronde,
Beerynge the rockes alonge ynn fhurye breme,
Soe wylle wee beere the Dacyanne armie downe,
And throughe a storme of blodde wyll reache the champyon crowne.
Gyff ynn thys battelle locke ne wayte oure gare,
To Brystowe dheie wylle tourne yeyre fhuyrie dyre;
Brystowe, & alle her joies, wylle synke toe ayre,
Brendeynge perforce wythe unenhantende fyre:
Thenne lette oure safetie doublie moove oure ire,
Lyche wolfyns, rovynge for the evnynge pre,
the lambe & shepsterr nere the brire,
Doth th'one forr safetie, th'one for hongre slea;
Thanne, whanne the ravenne crokes uponne the playne,
Oh! lette ytte bee the knelle to myghtie Dacyanns slayne.
Lyche a rodde gronfer, shalle mie anlace sheene,
Lyche a strynge lyoncelle I'lle bee ynne fyghte,
Lyche fallynge leaves the Dacyannes shalle bee sleene,
loud dynnynge streeme scalle be mie myghte.
Ye menne, who woulde deserve the name of knyghte,
Lette bloddie teares bie all your paves be wepte;
To commynge tymes no poyntelle shalle ywrite,
Whanne Englonde han her foemenn, Brystow slepte.
Yourselfses, youre chyldren, & youre fellowes crie,
Go, fyghte ynne rennomes gare, be brave, & wynne or die.
I saie ne moe; youre spryte the reste wylle saie;
Youre spryte wylle wrynne, thatte Brystow ys yer place;
To honoures house I nede notte marcke the waie;
Inne youre owne hartes you maie the foote-pathe trace.
'Twexte shappe & us there ys botte lyttelle space;
The tyme ys nowe to proove yourselves bee menne;
Drawe forthe the bornyshed bylle wythe fetyve grace,
Rouze, lyche a wolfynne rouzing from hys denne.
Thus I enrone mie anlace; goe thou shethe;
I'lle potte ytt ne ynn place, tyll ytte ys sycke wythe deathe.
Onn, Ælla, onn; we longe for bloddie fraie;
Wee longe to here the raven synge yn vayne;
Onn, Ælla, onn; we certys gayne the daie,
Whanne thou doste leade us to the leathal playne.
Thie speche, O Loverde, fyrethe the whole trayne;
Theie pancte for war, as honted wolves for breathe;
Go, & sytte crowned on corses of the slayne;
Go, & ywielde the massie swerde of deathe.
From thee, O Ælla, alle oure courage reygnes;
Echone yn phantasie do lede the Danes ynne chaynes.
Mie countrymenne, mie friendes, your noble sprytes
Speke yn youre eyne, & doe yer master telle.
Swefte as the rayne-storme toe the erthe alyghtes,
Soe wylle we fall upon these royners felle.
Oure mowynge swerdes shalle plonge hem downe to helle;
Theyre throngynge corses shall onlyghte the starres;
The barrowes brastynge wythe the sleene schall swelle,
Brynnynge to commynge tymes our famous warres;
Inne everie eyne I kenne the lowe of myghte,
Sheenynge abrode, alyche a hylle-fyre ynne the nyghte.
Whanne poyntelles of oure famous fyghte shall saie,
Echone wylle marvelle atte the dernie dede,
Echone wylle wyssen hee hanne seene the daie,
And bravelie holped to make the foemenn blede;
Botte for yer holpe oure battelle wylle notte nede;
Oure force ys force enowe to staie theyre honde;
Wee wylle retourne unto thys grened mede,
Oer corses of the foemen of the londe.
Nowe to the warre lette all the slughornes sounde,
The Dacyanne troopes appere on yinder rysynge grounde.
Chiefes, heade youre bandes, and leade.

DANES flyinge, neare WATCHETTE.
FLY, fly, ye Danes; Magnus, the chiefe, ys sleene;
The Saxonnes comme wythe Ælla atte theyre heade;
Lette's strev to gette awaie to yinder greene;
Flie, flie; thys ys the kyngdomme of the deadde.
O goddes! have thousandes bie mie anlace bledde,
And muste I nowe for safetie flie awaie?
See! farre besprenged alle oure troopes are spreade,
Yette I wylle synglie dare the bloddie fraie.
Botte ne; I'lle flie, & morther yn retrete;
Deathe, blodde, & fyre, scalle marke the goeynge of my feete.
Enthoghteynge forr to scape the brondeynge foe,
As nere unto the byllowd beche I came,
Farr offe I spied a syghte of myckle woe,
Oure spyrynge battayles wrapte ynn sayles of flame.
The burled Dacyannes, who were ynne the same,
Fro syde to syde fledde the pursuyte of deathe;
The swelleynge fyre yer corrage doe enflame,
Theie lepe ynto the sea, & bobbiynge yield yer breathe;
Whylest those thatt bee uponne the bloddie playne,
Bee deathe-doomed captyves taene, or yn the battle slayne.
Nowe bie the goddes, Magnus, dyscourteous knyghte,
Bie cravente havyoure havethe don oure woe,
Dyspendynge all the talle menne yn the fyghte,
And placeyng valourous menne where draffs mote goe.
Sythence oure fourtunie havethe tourned soe,
Gader the souldyers lefte to future shappe,
To somme newe place for safetie wee wylle goe,
Inne future daie wee wylle have better happe.
Sounde the loude slughorne for a quicke forloyne ;
Lette alle the Dacyannes swythe untoe oure banner joyne.
Throw hamlettes wee wylle sprenge sadde dethe & dole,
Bathe yn hotte gore, & wasch oureselves thereynne;
Goddes! here the Saxonnes lyche a byllowe rolle.
I heere the anlacis detested dynne.
Awaie, awaie, ye Danes, to yonder penne;
Wee now wylle make forloyne yn tyme to fyghte agenne.

O forr a spryte al feere! to telle the daie,
The daie whyche scal astounde the herers rede,
Makeynge oure foemennes envyynge hartes to blede,
Ybereynge thro the worlde oure rennomde name for aie.
Bryghte sonne han ynne hys roddie robes byn dyghte,
From the rodde Easte he flytted wythe hys trayne,
The howers drewe awaie the geete of nyghte,
Her sable tapistrie was rente yn twayne.
The dauncynge streakes bedecked heavennes playne,
And on the dewe dyd smyle wythe shemrynge eie,
Lyche gottes of blodde whyche doe blacke armoure steyne,
Sheenynge upon the borne whyche stondeth bie;
The souldyers stoode uponne the hillis syde,
Lyche yonge enlefed trees whyche yn a forreste byde.
Ælla rose lyche the tree besette wyth brieres;
Hys talle speere sheenynge as the starres at nyghte,
Hys eyne ensemeynge as a lowe of fyre;
Whanne he encheered everie manne to fyghte,
Hys gentle wordes dyd moove eche valourous knyghte;
Itte moovethe 'hem, as honterres lyoncelle;
In trebled armoure ys theyre courage dyghte;
Eche warrynge harte forr prayse & rennome swelles;
Lyche slowelie dynnynge of the croucheynge streme,
Syche dyd the mormrynge sounde of the whol armie seme.
Hee ledes 'hem onne to fyghte; oh! thenne to saie
How Ælla loked, and lokyng dyd encheere,
Moovynge alyche a mountayne yn affraie,
Whanne a lowde whyrlevynde doe yttes boesomme tare,
To telle howe everie loke wulde banyshe feere,
Woulde aske an angelles poyntelle or hys tyngue.
Lyche a talle rocke yatte ryseth heaven-were,
Lyche a yonge wolfynne brondeous & strynge,
Soe dydde he goe, & myghtie warriours hedde;
Wythe gore-depycted wynges masterie arounde hym fledde.
The battelle jyned; swerdes uponne swerdes dyd rynge;
Ælla was chafed, as lyonns madded bee;
Lyche fallynge starres, he dydde the javlynn flynge;
Hys mightie anlace mightie menne dyd slea;
Where he dydde comme, the flemed foe dydde flee,
Or felle benethe hys honde, as fallynge rayne,
Wythe sythe a fhuyrie he dydde onn 'hemm dree,
Hylles of yer bowkes dyd ryse opponne the playne;
Ælla, thou arte -- botte staie, mie tynge; saie nee;
Howe greate I hymme maye make, stylle greater hee wylle bee.
Nor dydde hys souldyerres see hys actes yn vayne.
Heere a stoute Dane uponne hys compheere felle;
Heere lorde & hyndlette sonke uponne the playne;
Heere sonne & fadre trembled ynto helle.
Chief Magnus sought hys waie, &, shame to telle!
Hee soughte hys waie for flyghte; botte Ælla's speere
Uponne the flyynge Dacyannes schoulder felle,
Quyte throwe hys boddie, & hys harte ytte tare,
He groned, & sonke uponne the gorie greene,
And wythe hys corse encreased the pyles of Dacyannes sleene.
Spente wythe the fyghte, the Danyshe champyons stonde,
Lyche bulles, whose strengthe & wondrous myghte ys fledde;
Ælla, a javelynne grypped yn eyther honde,
Flyes to the thronge, & doomes two Dacyannes deadde.
After hys acte, the armie all yspedde;
Fromm everich on unmyssynge javlynnes flewe;
Theie straughte yer doughtie swerdes; the foemenn bledde;
Fulle three of foure of myghtie Danes dheie slewe;
The Danes, wythe terroure rulynge att their head,
Threwe downe theyr bannere talle, & lyche a ravenne fledde.
The soldyerres followed wythe a myghtie crie,
Cryes, yatte welle myghte the stouteste hartes affraie.
Swefte, as yer shyppes, the vanquyshed Dacyannes flie;
Swefte, as the rayne uponne an Aprylie daie,
Pressynge behynde, the Englysche soldyerres slaie.
Botte halfe the tythes of Danyshe menne remayne;
Ælla commaundes 'heie thoulde the sleetre staie,
Botte bynde 'hem prysonners on the bloddie playne.
The fyghtynge beynge done, I came awaie,
In odher fieldes to fyghte a moe unequalle fraie.
Mie servant squyre!

Prepare a fleing horse,
Whose feete are wynges, whose pace ys lycke the wynde,
Whoe wylle outestreppe the morneynge lyghte yn course,
Leaveynge the gyttelles of the merke behynde.
Somme hyltren matters doe mie presence fynde.
Gyv oute to alle yatte I was sleene ynne fyghte.
Gyff ynne thys gare thou doest mie order mynde,
Whanne I returne, thou shalte be made a knyghte;
Flie, flie, be gon; an howerre ys a daie;
Quycke dyghte mie best of stedes, and brynge hymm heere -- awaie!
Ælla ys woundedd sore, and ynne the toune
He waytethe, tylle hys woundes be broghte to ethe.
And shalle I from hys browes plocke off the croune,
Makynge the victore yn hys vyctorie blethe?
O no! fulle sooner schulde mie hartes blodde smethe,
Fulle soonere woulde I tortured bee to deathe;
Botte -- Birtha ys the pryze; ahe! ytte were ethe
To gayne so gayne a pryze wythe losse of breathe;
Botte thanne rennome æterne - ytte ys botte ayre;
Bredde ynne the phantasie, and alleyn lyvynge there.
Albeytte everyche thynge yn lyfe conspyre
To telle me of the faulte I nowe schulde doe,
Yette woulde I battentlie assuage mie fyre,
And the same menes, as I scall nowe, pursue.
The qualytyes I fro mie parentes drewe,
Were blodde, & morther, masterie, and warre;
Thie I wylie holde to now, & hede ne moe
A wounde yn rennome, yanne a boddie scarre.
Nowe, Ælla, nowe Ime plantynge of a thorne,
Bie whyche thie peace, thie love, & glorie shall be torne.

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Battle Of Hastings - II

OH Truth! immortal daughter of the skies,
Too lyttle known to wryters of these daies,
Teach me, fayre Saincte! hy passynge worthe to pryze,
To blame a friend and give a foeman prayse.
The fickle moone, bedeckt wythe sylver rays,
Leadynge a traine of starres of feeble lyghte,
With look adigne the worlde belowe surveies,
The world, that wotted not it coud be nyghte;
Wyth armour dyd, with human gore ydeyd,
The sees Kynge Harolde stande, fayre Englands curse and pryde.
With ale and vernage drunk his souldiers lay;
Here was an hynde, anie an erlie spredde;
Sad keepynge of their leaders natal daie!
This even in drinke, toomorrow with the dead!
Thro' everie troope disorder reer'd her hedde;
Dancynge and heideignes was the onlie theme;
Sad dome was theires, who lefte this easie bedde,
And wak'd in torments from so sweet a dream.
Duke Williams menne, of comeing dethe afraide,
All nyghte to the great Godde for succour askd and praied.
Thus Harolde to his wites that stoode arounde;
Goe, Gyrthe and Eilward, take bills halfe a score,
And search how farre our foeman's campe doth bound;
Yourself have rede; I nede to saie ne more.
My brother best belov'd of anie ore,
My Leofwinus, goe to everich wite,
Tell them to raunge the battel to the grore,
And waiten tyll I sende the hest for fyghte.
He saide; the loieaul broders lefte the place,
Success and cheerfulness depicted on ech face.
Slowelie brave Gyrthe and Eilwarde dyd advaunce,
And markd wyth care the armies dystant syde,
When the dyre clatterynge of the shielde and launce
Made them to be by Hugh Fitzhugh espyd.
He lyfted up his voice, and lowdlie cryd;
Like wolfs in wintere did the Normanne yell
Girthe drew hys swerde, and cutte hys burled hyde;
The proto-slene manne of the fielde he felle;
Out streemd the bloude, and ran in smokynge curles,
Reflected bie the moone seemd rubies mixt wyth pearles.
A troope of Normannes from the mass-songe came,
Rousd from their praiers by the flotting crie;
Thoughe Girthe and Ailwardus perceevd the same,
Not once theie stoode abashd, or thoghte to flie.
He seizd a bill, to conquer or to die;
Fierce as a clevis from a rocke ytorne,
That makes a vallie wheresoe're it lie;
Fierce as a ryver burstynge from the borne;
So fiercelie Gyrthe hitte Fitz du Gore a blowe,
And on the verdaunt playne he layde the champyone lowe.
Tancarville thus; alle peace in Williams name;
Let none edraw his arcublaster bowe.
Girthe cas'd his weppone, as he hearde the same,
And vengynge Normannes staid the flyinge floe.
The sire wente onne; ye menne, what mean ye so
Thus unprovokd to courte a bloudie fyghte?
Quod Gyrthe; oure meanynge we ne care to showe,
Nor dread thy duke wyth all his men of myghte;
Here single onlie these to all thie crewe
Shall shewe what Englysh handes and heartes can doe.
Seek not for bloude, Tancarville calme replyd,
Nor joie in dethe, lyke madmen most distraught;
In peace and mercy is a Chrystians pryde;
He that dothe contestes pryze is in a faulte.
And now the news was to Duke William brought,
That men of Haroldes armie taken were;
For theyre good cheere all caties were enthoughte,
And Gyrthe and Eilwardus enjoi'd goode cheere.
Quod Willyam; thus shall Willyam be founde
A friend to everie manne that treades on English ground.
Erle Leofwinus throwghe the campe ypass'd,
And sawe bothe men and erlies on the grounde;
They slepte, as thoughe they woulde have slepte theyr last,
And hadd alreadie felte theyr fatale wounde.
He started back; and was wyth shame astownd;
Loked wanne wyth anger, and he shooke wyth rage;
When throughe the hollow tentes these wordes dyd sound,
Rowse from your sleepe, detratours of the age!
Was it for thys the stoute Norwegian bledde?
Awake, ye huscarles, now, or waken wyth the dead.
As when the shepster in the shadie bowre
In jintle slumbers chase the heat of daie,
Hears doublyng echoe wind the wolfins rore,
That neare hys flocke is watchynge for a praie,
He tremblynge for his sheep drives dreeme awaie,
Gripes faste hys burled croke, and sore adradde
Wyth fleeting strides he hastens to the fraie,
And rage and prowess fyres the coistrell lad;
With trustie talbots to the battel flies,
And yell of men and dogs and wolfins tear the skies.
Such was the dire confusion of eche wite,
That rose from sleep and walsome power of wine;
Theie thoughte the foe by trechit yn the nyghte
Had broke theyr camp and gotten paste the line;
Now here now there the burnysht sheeldes and byll-spear shine;
Throwote the campe a wild confusionne spredde;
Eche bracd hys armlace siker ne desygne,
The crested helmet nodded on the hedde;
Some caught a slughorne, and an onsett wounde;
Kynge Harolde hearde the charge, and wondred at the sounde.
Thus Leofwine; O women cas'd in stele!
Was itte for thys Norwegia's stubborn sede
Throughe the black armoure dyd the anlace fele,
And rybbes of solid brasse were made to bleede?
Whylst yet the worlde was wondrynge at the deede.
You souldiers, that shoulde stand with byll in hand,
Get full of wine, devoid of any rede.
Oh shame! oh dyre dishonoure to the lande!
He sayde; and shame on everie visage spredde,
Ne sawe the erlies face, but addawd hung their head.
Thus he; rowze yee, and forme the boddie tyghte.
The Kentysh menne in fronte, for strenght renownd,
Next the Brystowans dare the bloudie fyghte,
And last the numerous crewe shall presse the grounde.
I and my king be wyth the Kenters founde;
Bythric and Alfwold hedde the Brystowe bande;
And Bertrams sonne, the man of glorious wounde,
Lead in the rear the menged of the lande
And let the Londoners and Suffers plie
Bie Herewardes memuine and the lighte skyrts anie.
He saide; and as a packe of hounds belent,
When that the trackyng of the hare is gone,
If one perchaunce shall hit upon the scent,
With twa redubbled fhuir the alans run;
So styrrd the valiante Saxons everych one;
Soone linked man to man the champyones stoode;
To 'tone for their bewrate so soone 'twas done,
And lyfted bylls enseem'd an yron woode;
Here glorious Alfwold towr'd above the wites,
And seem'd to brave the fuir of twa ten thousand fights.
Thus Leofwine; today will Englandes dome
Be fyxt for aie, for gode or evill state;
This sunnes aunture be felt for years to come;
Then bravelie fyghte, and live till deathe of daie.
Thinke of brave Ælfridus, yclept the grete,
From porte to porte the red-haird Dane he chasd,
The Danes, with whomme not lyoncels coud mate,
Who made of peopled reaulms a barren waste;
Thinke how at once by you Norwegia bled
Whilste dethe and victorie for magystrie bested.
Meanwhile did Gyrthe unto Kynge Harolde ride,
And tolde howe he dyd with Duke Willyam fare.
Brave Harolde lookd askaunte, and thus replyd;
And can thie say be bowght wyth drunken cheer?
Gyrthe waxen hotte; fhuir in his eyne did glare;
And thus he saide; oh brother, friend, and kynge,
Have I deserved this fremed speche to heare?
Bie Goddes hie hallidome ne thoughte the thynge.
When Tostus sent me golde and sylver store,
I scornd hys present vile, and scorn'd hys treason more.
Forgive me, Gyrthe, the brave Kynge Harolde cryd;
Who can I trust, if brothers are not true?
I think of Tostus, once my joie and pryde.
Girthe saide, with looke adigne; my lord, I doe.
But what oure foemen are, quod Girth, I'll shewe;
By Gods hie hallidome they preestes are.
Do not, quod Harold, Girthe, mystell them so,
For theie are everich one brave men at warre.
Quod Girthe; why will ye then provoke theyr hate?
Quod Harolde; great the foe, so is the glorie grete.
And nowe Duke Willyam mareschalled his band,
And stretchd his armie owte a goodlie rowe.
First did a ranke of arcublastries stande,
Next those on horsebacke drewe the ascendyng flo,
Brave champyones, eche well lerned in the bowe,
Theyr asenglave acrosse theyr horses ty'd,
Or with the loverds squier behinde dyd goe,
Or waited squier lyke at the horses syde.
When thus Duke Willyam to a Monke dyd saie,
Prepare thyselse wyth spede, to Harolde haste awaie.
Telle hym from me one of these three to take;
That hee to mee do homage for thys lande,
Or mee hys heyre, when he deceasyth, make,
Or to the judgment of Chrysts vicar stande.
He saide; the Monke departyd out of hande,
And to Kyng Harolde dyd this message bear;
Who said; tell thou the duke, at his likand
If he can gette the crown hee may itte wear.
He said, and drove the Monke out of his syghte,
And with his brothers rouz'd each manne to bloudie fyghte.
A standarde made of sylke and jewells rare,
Wherein alle coloures wroughte aboute in bighes,
An armyd knyghte was seen deth-doynge there,
Under this motte, he conquers or he dies.
This standard rych, endazzlynge mortal eyes,
Was borne neare Harolde at the Kenters heade,
Who chargd hys broders for the grete empryze
That straite the hest for battle should be spredde.
To evry Erle and knyghte the worde is gyven,
And cries a guerre and slughornes shake the vaulted heaven,
As when the erthe, torne by convulsyons dyre,
In reaulmes of darkness hid from human syghte,
The warring force of water, air, and fyre,
Brast from the regions of eternal nyghte,
Thro the darke caverns seeke the reaulmes of lyght;
Some loftie mountaine, by its fury torne,
Dreadfully moves, and causes grete affryght;
Now here, now there, majestic nods the bourne,
And awfulie shakes, mov'd by the almighty force,
Whole woods and forests nod, and ryvers change theyr course.
So did the men of war at once advaunce,
Linkd man to man, enseemed one boddie light;
Above a wood, yform'd of bill and launce,
That noddyd in the ayre most straunge to syght.
Harde as the iron were the menne of mighte,
Ne neede of slughornes to enrowse theyr minde;
Eche shootynge spere yreaden for the fyghte,
More feerce than fallynge rocks, more swefte than wynd;
With solemne step, by ecchoe made more dyre,
One single boddie all theie marchd, theyr eyen on fyre.
And slow the greie-eyd morne with vi'lets drest,
Shakyng the dewdrops on the flourie meedes,
Fled with her rosie radiance to the West:
Forth from the Easterne gatte the fyerie steedes
Of the bright sunne awaytynge spirits leedes:
The sunne, in fierie pompe enthrond on hie,
Swyfter than thoughte alonge hys jernie gledes,
And scatters nyghtes remaynes from oute the skie.
He sawe the armies make for bloudie fraie,
And stopt his driving steeds, and hid his lyghtsome raye.
Kynge Harolde hie in ayre majestic raysd
His mightie arme, deckt with a manchyn rare;
With even hande a mighty javlyn paizde,
Then furyouse sent it whystlynge thro the ayre.
It struck the helmet of the Sieur de Beer;
In vayne did brasse or yron stop its waie;
Above his eyne it came, the bones dyd tare,
Peercynge quite thro, before it dyd allaie;
He tumbled, scritchyng wyth hys horrid payne;
His hollow cuishes rang upon the bloudie pleyne.
This Willyam saw, and soundynge Rowlandes songe
He bent his yron interwoven bowe,
Makynge bothe endes to meet with myghte full stronge,
From out of mortals syght fhot up the floe;
Then swyfte as fallynge starres to earthe belowe
It slaunted down on Alfwoldes payncted sheelde;
Quite thro the silver-bordurd crosse did goe,
Nor loste its force, but stuck into the feelde;
The Normannes, like theyr sovrin, dyd prepare,
And shotte ten thousande floes uprysynge in the aire.
As when a flyghte of cranes, that takes their waie
In householde armies thro the flanched skie,
Alike the cause, or companie or prey,
Is that perchaunce some boggie fenne is nie.
Soon as the muddie natyon theie espie,
Inne one blacke cloude theie to the erth descende;
Feirce as the fallynge thunderbolte they flie;
In vayne do reedes the speckled folk defend:
So prone to heavie blowe the arrowes felle,
And peered thro brasse, and sente manie to heaven or helle.
Ælan Adelfred, of the stowe of Leigh,
Felte a dire arrowe burnynge in his breste;
Before he dyd, he sente hys spear awaie,
Thenne sunke to glorie and eternal reste.
Nevylle, a Normanne of alle Normannes beste,
Throw the joint cuishe dyd the javlyn feel,
As hee on horsebacke for the fyghte addressd,
And sawe hys bloude come smokynge oer the steele;
He sente the avengynge floe into the ayre,
And turnd hys horses hedde, and did to leeche repayre.
And now the javelyns, barbd with deathhis wynges,
Hurld from the Englysh handes by force aderne,
Whyzz dreare along; and songes of terror synges,
Such songes as alwaies clos'd in lyfe eterne.
Hurld by such strength along the ayre theie burne,
Not to be quenched butte ynn Normannes bloude;
Wherere theie came they were of lyfe forlorn,
And alwaies followed by a purple floude;
Like cloudes the Normanne arrowes did descend,
Like cloudes of carnage full in purple drops dyd end.
Nor, Leofwynus, dydst thou still estande;
Full soon thie pheon glytted in the aire;
The force of none but thyne and Harolds hande
Could hurle a javlyn with such lethal geer;
Itte whyzzd a ghastlie dynne in Normannes ear,
Then thundryng dyd upon hys greave alyghte,
Peirce to his hearte, and dyd hys bowels tear,
He closd hys eyne in everlastynge nyghte;
Ah! what avayld the lyons on his creste!
His hatchments rare with him upon the grounde was prest.
Willyam agayne ymade his bowe-ends meet,
And hie in ayre the arrowe wynged his waie,
Descendyng like a shafte of thunder fleete,
Lyke thunder rattling at the noon of daie,
Onne Algars sheelde the arrowe dyd allaie,
There throghe dyd peerse, and stycke into his groine;
In grypynge torments on the feelde he laie,
Tille welcome dethe came in and clos'd his eyne;
Distort with peyne he laie upon the borne,
Lyke sturdie elms by stormes in uncothe wrythynges torne.
Alrick his brother, when hee this perceevd,
He drewe his swerde, his lefte hande helde a speere,
Towards the duke he turnd his prauncyng steede,
And to the Godde of heaven he sent a prayre;
Then sent his lethale javlyn in the ayre,
On Hue de Beaumontes backe the javelyn came,
Thro his redde armour to hys harte it tare,
He felle and thondred on the place of fame;
Next with his swerde he 'sayld the Seiur de Roe,
And braste his sylver helme, so furyous was the blowe.
But Willyam, who had seen hys prowesse great,
And feered muche how farre his bronde might goe,
Tooke a strong arblaster, and bigge with fate
From twangynge iron sente the fleetynge floe.
As Alric hoistes hys arme for dedlie blowe,
Which, han it came, had been Du Roees laste,
The swyfte-wyngd messenger from Willyams bowe
Quite throwe his arme into his syde ypaste;
His eyne shotte fyre, lyke blazyng starre at nyghte,
He grypd his swerde, and felle upon the place of fyghte.
O Alfwolde, saie, how shalle I synge of thee
Or telle how manie dyd benethe thee falle;
Not Haroldes self more Normanne knyghtes did slee,
Not Haroldes self did for more praises call
How shall a penne like myne then shew it all?
Lyke thee their leader, eche Bristowyanne foughte;
Lyke thee, their blaze must be canonical,
Fore theie, like thee, that daie bewrecke yroughte.
Did thirtie Normannes fall upon the grounde,
Full half a score from thee and theie receive their fatale wounde.
First Fytz Chivelloys felt thie direful force;
Nete did hys helde out brazen sheelde availe;
Eftsoones throwe that thie drivynge speare did peerce
Nor was ytte stopped by his coate of mayle;
Into his breaste it quicklie did assayle;
Out ran the bloude, like hygra of the tyde;
With purple stayned all hys adventayle;
In scarlet was his cuishe of sylver dyde.
Upon the bloudie carnage house he laie,
Whylst hys longe sheelde dyd glem with the sun's rysing ray.
Next Fescampe felle; O Chrieste, howe harde his fate
To die the leckedst knyghte of all the thronge!
His sprite was made of malice deslavate,
Ne shoulden find a place in anie songe.
The broch'd keene javlyn hurld from honde so stronge
As thine came thundrynge on his crysted beave;
Ah! neete avayld the brass or iron thonge,
With mightie force his skulle in twoe dyd cleave;
Fallyng he shooken out his smokyng braine,
As witherd oakes or elmes are hewne from off the playne.
For, Norcie, could thie myghte and skilfulle lore
Preserve thee from the doom of Alfwold's speere;
Couldste thou not kenne, most skyll'd After la goure,
How in the battle it would wythe thee fare?
When Alfwolds javelyn, rattlynge in the ayre,
From hande dyvine on thie habergeon came,
Oute at thy backe it dyd thie hartes bloude bear,
It gave thee death and everlastynge fame;
Thy deathe could onlie come from Alfwolde arme,
As diamondes onlie can its fellow diamonds harme.
Next Sire du Mouline fell upon the grounde,
Quite throughe his throte the lethal javlyn preste,
His soule and bloude came roushynge from the wounde;
He closd his eyen, and opd them with the blest.
It can no be I should behight the rest,
That by the myghtie arme of Alfwolde felle,
Paste bie a penne to be counte or expreste,
How manie Alfwolde sent to heaven or helle;
As leaves from trees shook by derne Autumns hand,
So laie the Normannes slain by Alfwold on the strand.
As when a drove of wolves withe dreary yelles
Assayle some flocke, ne care if shepster ken't,
Besprenge destructione oer the woodes and delles;
The shepster swaynes in vayne theyr lees lement;
So foughte the Brystowe menne; ne one crevent,
Ne onne abashd enthoughten for to flee;
With fallen Normans all the playne besprent,
And like theyr leaders every man did slee;
In vayne on every syde the arrowes fled
The Brystowe menne styll ragd, for Alfwold was not dead.
Manie meanwhile by Haroldes arm did falle,
And Leofwyne and Gyrthe encreasd the slayne;
'Twould take a Nestor's age to synge them all,
Or telle how manie Normannes preste the playne;
But of the erles, whom recorde nete hath slayne,
O Truthe! for good of after-tymes relate,
That, thowe they're deade, theyr names may lyve agayne,
And be in deathe, as they in life were, greate;
So after-ages maie theyr actions see,
And like to them æternal alwaie stryve to be.
Adhelm, a knyghte, whose holie deathless sire
For ever bended to St. Cuthbert's shryne,
Whose breast for ever burnd with sacred fyre,
And een on erthe he myghte be calld dyvine;
To Cuthbert's church he dyd his goodes resygne,
And lefte hys son his God's and fortunes knyghte;
His son the Saincte behelde with looke adigne,
Made him in gemot wyse, and greate in fyghte;
Saincte Cuthberte dyd him ayde in all hys deedes,
His friends he lets to live, and all his fomen bleedes.
He married was to Kenewalchae faire,
The fynest dame the sun or moone adave;
She was the myghtie Aderedus heyre,
Who was alreadie hastynge to the grave;
As the blue Bruton, rysinge from the wave,
Like sea-gods seeme in most majestic guise,
And rounde aboute the risynge waters lave,
And their longe hayre arounde their bodie flies,
Such majestie was in her porte displaid,
To be excelld bie none but Homer's martial maid.
White as the chaulkie clyffes of Brittaines isle,
Red as the highest colour'd Gallic wine,
Gaie as all nature at the mornynge smile,
Those hues with pleasaunce on her lippes combine,
Her lippes more redde than summer evenynge skyne,
Or Phœbus rysinge in a frostie morne,
Her breste more white than snow in feeldes that lyene,
Or lillie lambes that never have been shorne,
Swellynge like bubbles in a boillynge welle,
Or new-braste brooklettes gently whyspringe in the delle.
Browne as the fylberte droppyng from the shelle,
Browne as the nappy ale at Hocktyde game,
So browne the crokyde rynges, that featlie fell
Over the neck of the all-beauteous dame.
Greie as the morne before the ruddie flame
Of Phebus charyotte rollynge thro the skie,
Greie as the steel-horn'd goats Conyan made tame,
So greie appeard her featly sparklyng eye;
Those eyne, that did oft mickle pleased look
On Adhelm valyaunt man, the virtues doomsday book.
Majestic as the grove of okes that stoode
Before the abbie buylt by Oswald kynge;
Majestic as Hybernies holie woode,
Where sainctes and soules departed masses synge;
Such awe from her sweete looke forth issuynge
At once for reveraunce and love did calle;
Sweet as the voice of thraslarkes in the Spring,
So sweet the wordes that from her lippes did falle;
None fell in vayne; all shewed some entent;
Her wordies did displaie her great entendement.
Tapre as candles layde at Cuthberts shryne,
Tapre as elmes that Goodrickes abbie shrove,
Tapre as silver chalices for wine,
So tapre was her armes and shape ygrove.
As skyllful mynemenne by the stones above
Can ken what metalle is ylach'd belowe,
So Kennewalcha's face, ymade for love,
The lovelie ymage of her soule did shewe;
Thus was she outward form'd; the sun her mind
Did guilde her mortal shape and all her charms refin'd.
What blazours then, what glorie shall he clayme,
What doughtie Homere shall hys praises synge,
That lefte the bosome of so fayre a dame
Uncall'd, unaskt, to serve his lorde the kynge?
To his fayre shrine goode subjects oughte to bringe
The armes, the helmets, all the spoyles of warre,
Throwe everie reaulm the poets blaze the thynge,
And travelling merchants spredde hys name to farre;
The stoute Norwegians had his anlace felte,
And nowe amonge his foes dethe-doynge blowes he delte.
As when a wolfyn gettynge in the meedes
He rageth sore, and doth about hym slee,
Nowe here a talbot, there a lambkin bleeds,
And alle the grasse with clotted gore doth stree;
As when a rivlette rolles impetuouslie,
And breaks the bankes that would its force restrayne,
Alonge the playne in fomynge rynges doth flee,
Gaynste walles and hedges doth its course maintayne;
As when a manne doth in a corn-fielde mowe,
With ease at one felle stroke full manie is laide lowe.
So manie, with such force, and with such ease,
Did Adhelm slaughtre on the bloudie playne;
Before hym manie dyd theyr hearts bloude lease,
Ofttymes he foughte on towres of smokynge slayne.
Angillian felte his force, nor felte in vayne;
He cutte hym with his swerde athur the breaste;
Out ran the bloude, and did hys armoure stayne,
He clos'd his eyen in æternal reste;
Lyke a tall oke by tempeste borne awaie,
Stretchd in the armes of dethe upon the plaine he laie.
Next thro the ayre he lent his javlyn feerce,
That on De Clearmoundes buckler did alyghte,
Throwe the vaste orbe the sharpe pheone did peerce,
Rang on his coate of mayle and spente its mighte.
But soon another wingd its aiery flyghte,
The keen broad pheon to his lungs did goe;
He felle, and groand upon the place of fighte,
Whilst lyfe and bloude came issuynge from the blowe.
Like a tall pyne upon his native playne,
So fell the mightie sire and mingled with the slaine.
Hue de Longeville, a force doughtre mere,
Advauncyd forwarde to provoke the darte,
When soone he founde that Adhelmes poynted speere
Had founde an easie passage to his hearte.
He drewe his bowe, nor was of dethe astarte,
Then fell down brethlesse to encrease the corse;
But as he drewe hys bowe devoid of arte,
So it came down upon Troyvillains horse;
Deep thro hys hatchmcnts wente the pointed floe;
Now here, now there, with rage bleedyng he rounde doth goe.
Nor does he hede his mastres known commands,
Tyll, growen furiouse by his bloudie wounde,
Erect upon his hynder feete he staundes,
And throwes hys mastre far off to the grounde.
Near Adhelms feete the Normanne laie astounde,
Besprengd his arrowes, loosend was his sheelde,
Thro his redde armoure, as he laie ensoond,
He peercd his swerde, and out upon the feelde
The Normannes bowels steemd, a dedlie syghte!
He opd and closd hys eyen in everlastynge nyghte.
Caverd, a Scot, who for the Normannes foughte,
A man well skilld in swerde and soundynge strynge,
Who fled his country for a crime enstrote,
For darynge with bolde worde hys loiaule kynge,
He at Erle Aldhelme with grete force did flynge
An heavie javlyn, made for bloudie wounde,
Alonge his sheelde askaunte the same did ringe,
Peercd thro the corner, then stuck in the grounde;
So when the thonder rauttles in the skie,
Thro some tall spyre the shaftes in a torn clevis flie.
Then Addhelm hurld a croched javlyn stronge,
With mighte that none but such grete championes know;
Swifter than thoughte the javlyn past alonge,
Ande hytte the Scot most feirclie on the prowe;
His helmet brasted at the thondring blowe,
Into his brain the tremblyn javlyn steck;
From eyther syde the bloude began to flow,
And run in circling ringlets rounde his neck;
Down fell the warriour on the lethal strande,
Lyke some tall vessel wreckt upon the tragick sande.


Where fruytless heathes and meadowes cladde in greie,
Save where derne hawthornes reare theyr humble heade,
The hungrie traveller upon his waie
Sees a huge desarte alle arounde hym spredde,
The distaunte citie scantlie to be spedde,
The curlynge force of smoke he sees in vayne,
Tis too far distaunte, and hys onlie bedde
Iwimpled in hys cloke ys on the playne,
Whylste rattlynge thonder forrey oer his hedde,
And raines come down to wette hys harde uncouthlie bedde.
A wondrous pyle of rugged mountaynes standes,
Placd on eche other in a dreare arraie,
It ne could be the worke of human handes,
It ne was reared up bie menne of daie.
Here did the Brutons adoration paye
To the false god whom they did Tauran name,
Dightynge hys altarre with greete fyres in Maie,
Roastynge theyr vyctualle round aboute the flame,
'Twas here that Hengyst did the Brytons slee,
As they were mette in council for to bee.
Neere on a loftie hylle a citie standes,
That lyftes yts scheafted heade ynto the skies,
And kynglie lookes arounde on lower landes,
And the longe browne playne that before itte lies.
Herewarde, borne of parentes brave and wyse,
Within this vylle fyrste adrewe the ayre,
A blessynge to the erthe sente from the skies,
In anie kyngdom nee coulde fynde his pheer;
Now rybbd in steele he rages yn the fyghte,
And sweeps whole armies to the reaulmes of nyghte.
So when derne Autumne wyth hys sallowe hande
Tares the green mantle from the lymed trees,
The leaves besprenged on the yellow strande
Flie in whole armies from the blataunte breeze;
Alle the whole fielde a carnage-howse he sees,
And sowles unknelled hover'd oer the bloude;
From place to place on either hand he slees,
And sweepes alle neere hym lyke a bronded floude
Dethe honge upon his arme; he sleed so maynt,
'Tis paste the pointel of a man to paynte.
Byghte sonne in haste han drove hys fierie wayne
A three howres course alonge the whited skyen,
Vewynge the swarthless bodies on the playne,
And longed greetlie to plonce in the bryne.
For as hys beemes and far-stretchynge eyne
Did view the pooles of gore yn purple sheene,
The wolsomme vapours rounde hys lockes dyd twyne.
And dyd disfygure all hys semmlikeen;
Then to harde actyon he hys wayne dyd rowse,
In hyssynge ocean to make glair hys browes.
Duke Wyllyam gave commaunde, eche Norman knyghte,
That beer war-token in a shielde so fyne,
Shoulde onward goe, and dare to closer fyghte
The Saxonne warryor, that dyd so entwyne,
Lyke the neshe bryon and the eglantine,
Orre Cornysh wrastlers at a Hocktyde game.
The Normannes, all emarchialld in a lyne,
To the ourt arraie of the thight Saxonnes came;
There 'twas the whaped Normannes on a parre
Dyd know that Saxonnes were the sonnes of warre.
Oh Turgotte, wheresoeer thie spryte dothe haunte,
Whither wyth thie lovd Adhelme by thie syde,
Where thou mayste heare the swotie nyghte larke chaunte,
Orre wyth some mokynge brooklette swetelie glide,
Or rowle in ferselie wythe ferse Severnes tyde,
Whereer thou art, come and my mynde enleme
Wyth such greete thoughtes as dyd with thee abyde,
Thou sonne, of whom I ofte have caught a beeme,
Send mee agayne a drybblette of thie lyghte,
That I the deeds of Englyshmenne maie wryte.
Harold, who saw the Normannes to advaunce,
Seizd a huge byll, and layd hym down hys spere;
Soe dyd ech wite laie downe the broched launce,
And groves of bylles did glitter in the ayre.
Wyth showtes the Normannes did to battel steere;
Campynon famous for his stature highe,
Fyrey wythe brasse, benethe a shyrte of lere,
In cloudie daie he reechd into the skie;
Neere to Kyng Harolde dyd he come alonge,
And drewe hys steele Morglaien sworde so stronge.
Thryce rounde hys heade hee swung hys anlace wyde,
On whyche the sunne his visage did agleeme,
Then straynynge, as hys membres would dyvyde,
Hee stroke on Haroldes sheelde yn manner breme;
Alonge the fielde it made an horrid cleembe,
Coupeynge Kyng Harolds payncted sheeld in twayne,
Then yn the bloude the fierie swerde dyd steeme,
And then dyd drive ynto the bloudie playne;
So when in ayre the vapours do abounde,
Some thunderbolte tares trees and dryves ynto the grounde.
Harolde upreer'd hys bylle, and furious sente
A stroke, lyke thondre, at the Normannes syde;
Upon the playne the broken brasse besprente
Dyd ne hys bodie from dethe-doeynge hyde;
He tournyd back; and dyd not there abyde;
With straught oute sheelde hee ayenwarde did goe,
Threwe downe the Normannes, did their rankes divide,
To save himselse lefte them unto the foe;
So olyphauntes, in kingdomme of the sunne,
When once provok'd doth throwe theyr owne troopes runne.
Harolde, who ken'd hee was his armies staie,
Nedeynge the rede of generaul so wyse,
Byd Alfwoulde to Campynon haste awaie,
As thro the armie ayenwarde he hies,
Swyfte as a feether'd takel Alfwoulde flies,
The steele bylle blushynge oer wyth lukewarm bloude;
Ten Kenters, ten Bristowans for th' emprize
Hasted wyth Alfwoulde where Campynon stood,
Who aynewarde went, whylste everie Normanne knyghte
Dyd blush to see their champyon put to flyghte.
As painctyd Bruton, when a wolfyn wylde,
When yt is cale and blustrynge wyndes do blowe,
Enters hys bordelle, taketh hys yonge chylde,
And wyth his bloude bestreynts the lillie snowe,
He thoroughe mountayne hie and dale doth goe,
Throwe the quyck torrent of the bollen ave,
Throwe Severne rollynge oer the sandes belowe
He skyms alofe, and blents the beatynge wave,
Ne stynts, ne lagges the chace, tylle for hys eyne
In peecies hee the morthering theef doth chyne.
So Alfoulde he dyd to Campynon haste;
Hys bloudie bylle awhap'd the Normannes eyne;
Hee fled, as wolfes when bie the talbots chac'd,
To bloudie byker he dyd ne enclyne.
Duke Wyllyam stroke hym on hys brigandyne,
And sayd; Campynon, is it thee I see?
Thee? who dydst actes of glorie so bewryen,
Now poorlie come to hyde thieselfe bie mee?
Awaie! thou dogge, and acte a warriors parte,
Or with mie swerde I'll perce thee to the harte.
Betweene Erle Alfwoulde and Duke Wyllyam's bronde
Campynon thoughte that nete but deathe coulde bee,
Seezed a huge swerde Morglaien yn his honde,
Mottrynge a praier to the Vyrgyne.
So hunted deere the dryvynge hounds will slee,
When theie dyscover they cannot escape;
And feerful lambkyns, when theie hunted bee,
Theyre ynfante hunters doe theie oft awhape;
Thus stoode Campynon, greete but hertlesse knyghte,
When feere of dethe made hym for deathe to fyghte.
Alfwoulde began to dyghte hymselse for fyghte,
Meanewhyle hys menne on everie syde dyd slee,
Whan on hys lyfted sheelde withe alle hys myghte
Campynon's swerde in burlie-brande dyd dree;
Bewopen Alfwoulde fellen on his knee;
Hys Brystowe menne came in hym for to save;
Eftsoons upgotten from the grounde was hee,
And dyd agayne the touring Norman brave;
Hee graspd hys bylle in syke a drear arraie,
Hee seem'd a lyon catchynge at hys preie.
Upon the Normannes brazen adventayle
The thondrynge bill of myghtie Alfwould came;
It made a dentful bruse, and then dyd fayle;
Fromme rattlynge weepons shotte a sparklynge flame;
Eftsoons agayne the thondrynge bill ycame,
Peers'd thro hys adventayle and skyrts of lare;
A tyde of purple gore came wyth the same,
As out hys bowells on the feelde it tare;
Campynon felle, as when some cittie-walle
Inne dolefulle terrours on its mynours falle.
He felle, and dyd the Norman rankes dyvide;
So when an oke, that shotte ynto the skie,
Feeles the broad axes peersynge his broade syde,
Slowlie hee falls and on the grounde doth lie,
Pressynge all downe that is wyth hym anighe,
And stoppynge wearie travellers on the waie;
So straught upon the playne the Norman hie
* * * * * * * * * *
Bled, gron'd, and dyed; the Normanne knyghtes astound
To see the bawsin champyon preste upon the grounde.
As when the hygra of the Severne roars,
And thunders ugsom on the sandes below,
The cleembe reboundes to Wedecesters shore,
And sweeps the black sande rounde its horie prowe;
So bremie Alfwoulde thro the warre dyd goe;
Hys Kenters and Brystowans slew ech syde,
Betreinted all alonge with bloudless foe,
And seemd to swymm alonge with bloudie tyde;
Fromme place to place besmeard with bloud they went,
And rounde aboute them swarthless corse besprente.
A famous Normanne who yclepd Aubene,
Of skyll in bow, in tylte, and handesworde fyghte
That daie yn feelde han manie Saxons sleene,
Forre hee in sothen was a manne of myghte;
Fyrste dyd his swerde on Adelgar alyghte,
As hee on horseback was, and peersd hys gryne,
Then upwarde wente: in everlastynge nyghte
Hee closd hys rollyng and dymsyghted eyne.
Next Eadlyn, Tatwyn, and fam'd Adelred,
Bie various causes sunkwn to the dead.
But now to Alfwoulde he opposynge went,
To whom compar'd hee was a man of stre,
And wyth bothe hondes a myghtie blowe he sente
At Alfwouldes head, as hard as hee could dree;
But on hys payncted sheelde so bismarlie
Aslaunte his swerde did go ynto the grounde;
Then Alfwould him attack'd most furyouslie,
Athrowe hys gaberdyne hee dyd him wounde,
Then soone agayne hys swerde hee dyd upryne,
And clove his creste and split hym to the eyne.

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Eclogue The Third

Wouldst thou kenn Nature in her better parte?
Goe, serche the logges and bordels of the hynde ;
Gyfe theye have anie, itte ys roughe-made arte,
Inne hem you see the blakied forme of kynde .
Haveth your mind a lycheynge of a mynde?
Woulde it kenne everich thynge as it mote bee;
Woulde ytte here phrase of the vulgar from the hynde,
Wythoute wiseegger wordes and knowlache free,
Gyf soe, rede thys, whych Iche dysporteynge pende,
Gif nete besyde, yttes rhyme maie ytte commend.


Botte whether, fayre mayde do ye goe,
O where do ye bend yer waie?
I wile knowe whether you goe,
I wylle not be asseled naie.


To Robyn and Nell, all downe in the Delle,
To hele hem at makeynge of haie.


Syr Rogerre the Parsone hav hyred mee there,
Comme, Comme, lette us tryppe ytte awaie;
We'lle wurche and wylle synge, and wylle drenche of stronge Beere,
As longe as the merrie sommers daie.


Howe harde ys mie dome to wurch!
Moke is mie woe:
Dame Agnes whoe lies ynne the Chyrche,
With birlette golde;
Wythe gelten aumeres stronge ontolde,
What was shee moe than me, to be soe?


I kenne Syr Roger from afar,
Tryppynge over the Lea,
Ich ask whie the loverds son
Is moe than mee.


The sweltrie sonne dothe hie apace hys wayne .
From everich beme, a seme of lyfe doe falle;
Swythyn scille oppe the haie uponne the playne,
Methynckes the cockse begynneth to gre talle:
Thys ys alyche oure doome , the great, the smalle,
Moste withe and be forwyned by Deathis darte;
See the swote flourette hathe noe swote at alle;
Itte wythe the ranke wede berethe evalle parte,
The cravent , warriour, and the wyse be blent :
Alyche to drie awaie, with those thele did bemente .


All-a-Boon Syr Priest, all-a-boon,
Bye yer preesteschype nowe saye unto mee:
Sir Gaufryd the knyghte, who lyveth harde bie,
Whie should hee, than me
Bee moe greate,
Inne honnoure, knyghtehoode and estate?


Attourne thine eyne arounde thys haied mee,
Tentyflie loke arounde the chaper delle ;
An answer to thie barganette here see,
Thys welked flouertte wylle a leson telle
Arist , it blew , itte florished, and dyd welle,
Lokeynge ascaunce upon the naighboure greene,
Yet with the deigned greene, yttes rennome felle,
Eftsonnes ytte shronke upon the daie-brente playne,
Didde not yttes loke, whilest ytte there dyd stonde,
To croppe ytte in the bodde move somme drede honde.

Syke ys the waie of lyffe: the loverds ente ,
Mooveth the robber hym therfor to slea:
Gyf thou has ethe , the shadowe of contente,
Believe the trothe , theres none moe haile yan thee:
Thou wurchest ; welle, canne thatte, a trobble bee?
Slothe moe wulde jade thee, than the roughest daie,
Couldest thou the kivercled of soughlys see,
Thou wuldst eftsoones see trothe, inne whatte I saie;
Botte lette mee heere thie waie offe lyffe; and thenne
Heare thou from mee the lyffs of odher menne.


I ryse wythe the Sonne,
Lyche hym to dryve the wayne
And eere mie wurche is don
I synge a Songe or twayne.

I followe the plough tayle,
Wythe a long jubb of ale.
Botte of the Maydens, oh!
Itte lacketh notte to telle;

Syr Preeste mote notte crie woe,
Culde hys bull do as welle
I daunce the beste heiedeygnes ,
And foile the wysest feygnes.

On everych Seynctes his daie,
Wythe the mynstrelle am I seen,
All a footeynge it awaie,
Wythe maydens on the greene
But oh! I wyshe to be moe greate,
In rennome, tenure and estate.


Has thou ne sene a tree uponne a hylle,
Whose unliste braunces rechen far toe syghte;
Whan fuired unwers doe the heaven fylle,
Itte shaketh deere yn dole and moke affryghte:
Whilst the congeon flowrette abessie dyghte ,
Stondeth unhurte, unquaced bie the storme;
Syke is a picte of lyffe: the manne of myghte,
Is tempest-chaft : hys woe greate as hys forme
Thieself a flourette of a small accounte,
Wouldst harder felle the wynde, as hygher thee dydste mount.

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The Child of Elle

On yonder hill a castle standes,
With walles and towres bedight,
And yonder lives the Child of Elle,
A younge and comely knighte.

The Child of Elle to his garden wente,
And stood at his garden pale,
Whan, lo! he beheld faire Emmelines page
Come trippinge downe the dale.

The Child of Elle he hyed him thence,
Y-wis he stoode not stille,
And soone he mette faire Emmelines page
Come climbing up the hille.

'Nowe Christe thee save, thou little foot-page,
Now Christe thee save and see!
Oh telle me how does thy Ladye gaye,
And what may thy tydinges bee?'

'My Lady shee is all woe-begone,
And the teares they falle from her eyne;
And aye she laments the deadlye feude
Betweene her house and thine.

'And here shee sends thee a silken scarfe,
Bedewde with many a teare,
And biddes thee sometimes thinke on her,
Who loved thee so deare.

'And here shee sends thee a ring of golde,
The last boone thou mayst have,
And biddes thee weare it for her sake,
Whan she is layde in grave.

'For, ah! her gentle heart is broke,
And in grave soone must shee bee,
Sith her father hath chose her a new, new love,
And forbidde her to think of thee.

'Her father hath brought her a carlish knight,
Sir John of the north countraye,
And within three dayes shee must him wedde,
Or he vowes he will her slaye.'

'Nowe hye thee backe, thou little foot-page,
And greet thy ladye from mee,
And telle her that I, her owne true love,
Will dye, or sette her free.

'Nowe hye thee backe, thou little foot-page,
And let thy fair ladye know,
This night will I bee at her bowre-windowe,
Betide me weale or woe.'

The boye he tripped, the boye he ranne,
He neither stint ne stayd,
Untill he came to faire Emmelines bowre,
Whan kneeling downe he sayd:

'O ladye, Ive been thy own true love,
And he greets thee well by mee;
This night will he bee at thy bowre-windowe,
And dye or sette thee free.'

Nowe daye was gone, and night was come,
And all were fast asleepe,
All save the Ladye Emmeline,
Who sate in her bowre to weepe:

And soon shee heard her true loves voice
Lowe whispering at the walle:
'Awake, awake, my deare ladye,
'Tis I, thy true love, call.

'Awake, awake, my Ladye deare,
Come, mount this faire palfraye:
This ladder of ropes will lette thee downe,
Ile carrye thee hence awaye.'

'Nowe nay, nowe nay, thou gentle Knight,
Nowe nay, this may not bee;
For aye sould I tint my maiden fame,
If alone I should wend with thee.'

'O Ladye, thou with a knighte so true
Mayst safelye wend alone;
To my ladye mother I will thee bringe,
Where marriage shall make us one.'

'My father he is a baron bolde,
Of lynage proude and hye;
And what would he saye if his daughter
Awaye with a knight should fly?

'Ah! well I wot, he never would rest,
Nor his meate should do him no goode,
Till he had slayne thee, Child of Elle,
And seene thy deare hearts bloode.'

'O Ladye, wert thou in thy saddle sette,
And a little space him fro,
I would not care for thy cruel father,
Nor the worst that he could doe.

'O Ladye, wert thou in thy saddle sette,
And once without this walle,
I would not care for thy cruel father,
Nor the worst that might befalle.'

Faire Emmeline sighed, faire Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe:
At length he seizde her lily-white hand,
And downe the ladder he drewe.

And thrice he claspde her to his breste,
And kist her tenderlie:
The teares that fell from her fair eyes,
Ranne like the fountayne free.

Hee mounted himselfe on his steede so talle,
And her on a faire palfraye,
And slung his bugle about his necke,
And roundlye they rode awaye.

All this beheard her owne damselle,
In her bed whereas shee ley;
Quoth shee, 'My Lord shall knowe of this,
Soe I shall have golde and fee.

'Awake, awake, thou Baron bolde!
Awake, my noble dame!
Your daughter is fledde with the Child of Elle,
To doe the deede of shame.'

The baron he woke, the baron he rose,
And called his merrye men all:
'And come thou forth, Sir John the knighte;
The ladye is carried to thrall.'

Faire Emmeline scant had ridden a mile,
A mile forth of the towne,
When she was aware of her fathers men
Come galloping over the downe.

And foremost came the carlish knight,
Sir John of the north countraye:
'Nowe stop, nowe stop, thou false traitoure,
Nor carry that ladye awaye.

'For she is come of hye lynage,
And was of a ladye borne,
And ill it beseems thee, a false churles sonne,
To carrye her hence to scorne.'

'Nowe loud thou lyest, Sir John the knighte,
Nowe thou doest lye of mee;
A knight mee gott, and a ladye me bore,
Soe never did none by thee.

'But light nowe downe, my Ladye faire,
Light downe, and hold my steed,
While I and this discourteous knighte
Doe trye this arduous deede.

'But light now downe, my deare Ladye,
Light downe, and hold my horse;
While I and this discourteous knight
Doe trye our valours force.'

Faire Emmeline sighde, faire Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe,
While twixt her love and the carlish knight
Past many a baleful blowe.

The Child of Elle hee fought soe well,
As his weapon he wavde amaine,
That soone he had slaine the carlish knight,
And layde him upon the plaine.

And nowe the baron, and all his men
Full fast approached nye:
Ah! what may Ladye Emmeline doe?
Twere now no boote to flye.

Her lover he put his horne to his mouth,
And blew both loud and shrill,
And soone he saw his owne merry men
Come ryding over the hill.

'Nowe hold thy hand, thou bold Baron,
I pray thee, hold thy hand,
Nor ruthless rend two gentle hearts,
Fast knit in true loves band.

'Thy daughter I have dearly lovde
Full long and many a day;
But with such love as holy kirke
Hath freelye sayd wee may.

'O give consent shee may be mine,
And blesse a faithfull paire;
My lands and livings are not small,
My house and lynage faire.

'My mother she was an earles daughter,
And a noble knyght my sire --'
The baron he frownde, and turnde away
With mickle dole and ire.

Faire Emmeline sighde, faire Emmeline wept,
And did all tremblinge stand;
At lengthe she sprange upon her knee,
And held his lifted hand.

'Pardon, my Lorde and father deare,
This faire yong knyght and mee:
Trust me, but for the carlish knyght,
I never had fled from thee.

'Oft have you callde your Emmeline
Your darling and your joye;
O let not then your harsh resolves
Your Emmeline destroye.'

The baron he stroakt his dark-brown cheeke,
And turnde his heade asyde
To whipe awaye the starting teare,
He proudly strave to hyde.

In deepe revolving thought he stoode,
And musde a little space;
Then raisde faire Emmeline from the grounde,
With many a fond embrace.

'Here take her, Child of Elle,' he sayd,
And gave her lillye hand;
'Here take my deare and only child,
And with her half my lande.

'Thy father once mine honour wrongde,
In dayes of youthful pride;
Do thou the injurye repayre
In fondnesse for thy bride.

'And as thou love her and hold her deare,
Heaven prosper thee and thine;
And nowe my blessing wend wi' thee,
My lovelye Emmeline.'

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Ælla, a Tragical Interlude (excerpt)


The boddynge flourettes bloshes atte the lyghte;
The mees be sprenged wyth the yellowe hue;
Ynn daiseyd mantels ys the mountayne dyghte;
The nesh yonge coweslepe bendethe wyth the dewe;
The trees enlefed, yntoe Heavenne straughte,
Whenn gentle wyndes doe blowe to whestlyng dynne ys broughte.

The evenynge commes, and brynges the dewe alonge;
The roddie welkynne sheeneth to the eyne;
Arounde the alestake Mynstrells synge the songe;
Yonge ivie rounde the doore poste do entwyne;
I laie mee onn the grasse; yette, to mie wylle,
Albeytte alle ys fayre, there lackethe somethynge stylle.SECONDE MYNSTRELLE

So Adam thoughtenne, whann, ynn Paradyse,
All Heavenn and Erthe dyd hommage to hys mynde;
Ynn Womman alleyne mannes pleasaunce lyes;
As Instruments of joie were made the kynde.
Go, take a wyfe untoe thie armes, and see
Wynter and brownie hylles wyll have a charme for thee.THYRDE MYNSTRELLE

Whanne Autumpne blake and sonne-brente doe appere,
With hys goulde honde guylteynge the falleynge lefe,
Bryngeynge oppe Wynterr to folfylle the yere,
Beerynge uponne hys backe the riped shefe;
Whan al the hyls wythe woddie sede ys whyte;
Whanne levynne-fyres and lemes do mete from far the syghte;

Whann the fayre apple, rudde as even skie,
Do bende the tree unto the fructyle grounde;
When joicie peres, and berries of blacke die,
Doe daunce yn ayre, and call the eyne arounde;
Thann, bee the even foule or even fayre,
Meethynckes mie hartys joie ys steynced wyth somme care....MYNSTRELLES SONGE

O! synge untoe mie roundelaie,
O! droppe the brynie teare wythe mee,
Daunce ne moe atte hallie daie,
Lycke a reynynge ryver bee;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

Black hys cryne as the wyntere nyghte,
Whyte hys rode as the sommer snowe,
Rodde hys face as the mornynge lyghte,
Cale he lyes ynne the grave belowe;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

Swote hys tyngue as the throstles note,
Quycke ynn daunce as thoughte canne bee,
Defte hys taboure, codgelle stote,
O! hee lyes bie the wyllowe tree:
Mie love ys dedde,
Gone to hys deathe-bedde,
Alle underre the wyllowe tree.

Harke! the ravenne flappes hys wynge,
In the briered delle belowe;
Harke! the dethe-owle loude dothe synge,
To the nyghte-mares as heie goe;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

See! the whyte moone sheenes onne hie;
Whyterre ys mie true loves shroude;
Whyterre yanne the mornynge skie,
Whyterre yanne the evenynge cloude;
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

Heere, uponne mie true loves grave,
Schalle the baren fleurs be layde,
Nee one hallie Seyncte to save
Al the celness of a mayde.
Mie love ys dedde,
Gonne to hys death-bedde,
Alle under the wyllowe tree.

Wythe mie hondes I'lle dente the brieres
Rounde his hallie corse to gre,
Ouphante fairie, lyghte youre fyres,
Heere mie boddie stylle schall bee.
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys deathe-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

Comme, wythe acorne-coppe and thorne,
Drayne mie hartys blodde awaie;
Lyfe and all yttes goode I scorne,
Daunce bie nete, or feaste by daie.
Mie love ys dedde,
Gon to hys death-bedde,
Al under the wyllowe tree.

Waterre wytches, crownede wythe reytes,
Bere mee to yer leathalle tyde.
I die; I comme; mie true love waytes.
Thos the damselle spake, and dyed.

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The Libelle of Englyshe Polycye

Here beginneth the Prologe of the processe of the Libelle of Englyshe polycye, exhortynge alle Englande to kepe the see enviroun and namelye the narowe see, shewynge whate profete commeth thereof and also whate worshype and salvacione to Englande and to alle Englyshe menne.

The trewe processe of Englysh polycye
Of utterwarde to kepe thys regne in rest
Of oure England, that no man may denye
Ner say of soth but it is one the best,
Is thys, as who seith, south, north, est and west
Cheryshe marchandyse, kepe thamyralte,
That we bee maysteres of the narowe see.

For Sigesmonde the grete Emperoure,
Whyche yet regneth, whan he was in this londe
Wyth kynge Herry the vte, prince of honoure,
Here moche glorye, as hym thought, he founde,
A myghty londe, whyche hadde take on honde
To werre in Fraunce and make mortalite,
And ever well kept rounde aboute the see.

And to the kynge thus he seyde, 'My brothere',
Whan he perceyved too townes, Calys and Dovere,
'Of alle youre townes to chese of one and other
To kepe the see and sone for to come overe,
To werre oughtwardes and youre regne to recovere,
Kepe these too townes sure to youre mageste
As youre tweyne eyne to kepe the narowe see'.

For if this see be kepte in tyme of werre,
Who cane here passe withought daunger and woo?
Who may eschape, who may myschef dyfferre?
What marchaundy may forby be agoo?
For nedes hem muste take truse every foo,
Flaundres and Spayne and othere, trust to me,
Or ellis hyndered alle for thys narowe see.

Therfore I caste me by a lytell wrytinge
To shewe att eye thys conclusione,
For concyens and for myne acquytynge
Ayenst God, and ageyne abusyon
And cowardyse and to oure enmyes confusione;
For iiij. thynges oure noble sheueth to me,
Kyng, shype and swerde and pouer of the see.

Where bene oure shippes, where bene oure swerdes become?
Owre enmyes bid for the shippe sette a shepe.
Allas, oure reule halteth, hit is benome.
Who dare weel say that lordeshype shulde take kepe,
(I wolle asaye, thoughe myne herte gynne to wepe,
To do thys werke) yf we wole ever the,
For verry shame to kepe aboute the see?

Shall any prynce, what so be hys name,
Wheche hathe nobles moche lyche to oures,
Be lorde of see and Flemmynges to oure blame
Stoppe us, take us and so make fade the floures
Of Englysshe state and disteyne oure honnoures?
For cowardyse, allas, hit shulde so be;
Therfore I gynne to wryte now of the see.

Of the commodytees of Spayne and of Flaundres. The fyrste chapitle.
Knowe welle all men that profites in certayne
Commodytes called commynge oute of Spayne
And marchandy, who so wyll wete what that is,
Bene fygues, raysyns, wyne, bastarde and dates,
And lycorys, Syvyle oyle and also grayne,
Whyte Castell sope and wax is not in vayne,
Iren, wolle, wadmole, gotefel, kydefel also,
(For poyntmakers full nedefull be the ij.)
Saffron, quiksilver; wheche Spaynes marchandy
Is into Flaundres shypped full craftylye
Unto Bruges as to here staple fayre.
The havene of Sluse they have for here repayre,
Wheche is cleped the Swyne, thro shyppes gydynge,
Where many wessell and fayre arne abydynge.
But these merchandes wyth there shyppes greet,
And suche chaffare as they bye and gette
By the weyes, most nede take one honde
By the costes to passe of oure Englonde
Betwyxt Dover and Calys, thys is no doute.
Who can weell ellis suche matere bringe aboute?
And whenne these seyde marchauntz discharged be
Of marchaundy in Flaundres neere the see,
Than they be charged agayn wyth marchaundy
That to Flaundres longeth full rychelye,
Fyne clothe of Ipre, that named is better than oures,
Cloothe of Curtryke, fyne cloothe of all colours,
Moche fustyane and also lynen cloothe.
But ye Flemmyngis, yf ye be not wrothe,
The grete substaunce of youre cloothe at the fulle
Ye wot ye make hit of oure Englissh wolle.
Thanne may hit not synke in mannes brayne
But that hit most, this marchaundy of Spayne,
Bothe oute and inne by oure coostes passe?
He that seyth nay in wytte is lyche an asse.
Thus if thys see werre kepte, I dare well sayne,
Wee shulde have pease with tho growndes tweyne;
For Spayne and Flaundres is as yche othere brothere,
And nethere may well lyve wythowghten othere.
They may not lyven to mayntene there degrees
Wythoughten oure Englysshe commodytees,
Wolle and tynne, for the wolle of Englonde
Susteyneth the comons Flemmynges I understonde.
Thane, yf Englonde wolde hys wolle restreyne
Frome Flaundres, thys foloweth in certayne,
Flaundres of nede muste wyth us have pease
Or ellis he is distroyde wythowghten lees.
Also, yef Flaundres thus distroyed bee,
Some marchaundy of Spayne wolle nevere ithe.
For distroyed hit is, and as in cheffe
The wolle of Spayne hit cometh not to preffe
But if it be tosed and menged well
Amonges Englysshe wolle the gretter delle;
For Spayneshe wolle in Flaundres draped is
And evere hath be that mene have mynde of this.
And yet woll is one the cheffe marchaundy
That longeth to Spayne, who so woll aspye;
Hit is of lytell valeue, trust unto me,
Wyth Englysshe woll but if it menged be.
Thus, if the see be kepte, then herkene hedere,
Yf these ij. londes comene not togedere,
So that the flete of Flaundres passe nought,
That in the narowe see it be not brought
Into the Rochell to feche the fumose wyne,
Nere into Britounse bay for salt so fyne,
What is than Spayne, what is Flaundres also?
As who seyth, nought; there thryfte is alle ago.
For the lytell londe of Flaundres is
But a staple to other londes iwys,
And all that groweth in Flaundres, greyn and sede,
May not a moneth fynde hem mete of brede.
What hath thenne Flaundres, be Flemmynges leffe or lothe,
But a lytell madere and Flemmyshe cloothe?
By draperinge of oure wolle in substaunce
Lyvene here comons, this is here governaunce,
Wythoughten whyche they may not leve at ease;
Thus moste hem sterve or wyth us most have peasse.

Of the commoditees of Portingalle. The ij. capitle.
The marchaundy also of Portyngale
To dyverse londes torneth into sale.
Portyngalers wyth us have trought on hande,
Whose marchaundy cometh muche into Englande.
They bene oure frendes wyth there commoditez,
And wee Englysshe passen into there countrees.
Here londe hathe oyle, wyne, osey, wex and greyne,
Fygues, reysyns, hony and cordeweyne,
Dates and salt hydes and suche marchaundy.
And if they wolde to Flaundres passe forth bye,
They schulde not be suffrede ones ner twyes
For supportynge of oure cruell enmyes,
That is to saye Flemmynges wyth here gyle,
For chaungeable they are in lytel whyle.
Than I conclude by resons many moo,
Yf wee sufferede nethere frende nere foo,
What for enmyes and so supportynge,
To passe forby us in tyme of werrynge,
(Sethe oure frendys woll not bene in causse
Of oure hyndrenge, yf reason lede thys clausse)
Than nede frome Flaundres pease of us be sought,
And othere londes shulde seche pease, doute nought;
For Flaundres is staple, as men tell me,
To alle nacyons of Crystiante.

The commodytes of Pety Brytayne, wyth here revers on the see. The iij. capitle.
Forthermore to wryten I hame fayne
Somwhate spekynge of the Lytell Bretayne.
Commodite therof there is and was
Salt and wynes, crestclothe and canvasse;
And the londe of Flaunderes sekerly
Is the staple of there marchaundy,
Wheche marchaundy may not passe awey
But by the coste of Englonde, this is no nay.
And of thys Bretayn, who so trewth levys,
Are the gretteste rovers and the gretteste thevys
That have bene in the see many a yere;
And that oure marchauntes have bowght alle to dere.
For they have take notable gode of oures
On thys seyde see, these false coloured pelours,
Called of Seynt Malouse and elles where,
Wheche to there duke none obeysaunce woll bere.
Wyth suche colours we have bene hindred sore,
And fayned pease is called no werre herefore.
Thus they have bene in dyverse costes manye
Of oure England, mo than reherse can I,
In Northfolke coostes and othere places aboute,
And robbed and brente and slayne by many a routte;
And they have also raunsouned toune by toune,
That into the regnes of bost have ronne here soune,
Whyche hathe bene ruthe unto thys realme and shame.
They that the see shulde kepe are moche to blame;
For Brytayne is of easy reputasyone,
And Seynt Malouse turneth hem to reprobacione.

A storie of kynge Edwarde the iiide hys ordynaunce for Bretayne.
Here brynge I in a storye to me lente,
That a goode squyere in tyme of parlemente
Toke unto me well wrytene in a scrowe,
That I have comonde bothe wyth hygh and lowe;
Of whyche all mene accordene into one
That hit was done not monye yeris agone,
But whene that noble kyng Edwarde the thride
Regned in grace ryght thus hit betyde.
For he hadde a manere gelozye
To hys marchauntes and lowede hem hartelye.
He felt the weyes to reule well the see,
Whereby marchauntes myght have prosperite.
Therfore Harflewe and Houndflewe dyd he makene,
And grete werres that tyme were undertakene
Betwyx the kynge and the duke of Bretayne.
At laste to falle to pease bothe were they feyne,
Upon the whyche, made by convencione,
Oure marchaundys they made hem redy boune
Towarde Brytayne to lede here marchaundye,
Wenynge hem frendes, and wente forthe boldelye.
But sone anone oure marchaundes were itake,
And wee spede nevere the better for treuse sake;
They loste here goode, here navy and spendynge.
But when there compleynte come unto the kynge,
Then wex he wrothe and to the duke he sente
And compleyned that such harme was hente
By convencione and pease made so refused.
Whiche duke sent ageyne and hym excused,
Rehersynge that the Mount of Seynte Michell
And Seynt Malouse wolde nevere a dele
Be subject unto his governaunce
Ner be undere hys obë¹³aunce,
And so they did withowten hym that dede.
But whan the kynge anone had takene hede,
He in his herte set a jugemente,
Wythoute callynge of ony parlemente
Or grete tary to take longe avyse;
To fortefye anone he dyd devyse
Of Englysshe townes iij., that is to seye
Derthmouth, Plymmouth, the thyrde it is Foweye,
And gaffe hem helpe and notable puissaunce,
Wyth insistence set them in governaunce
Upon the Pety Bretayn for to werre.
Than gode seemenne wolde no more deferre,
But bete theme home and made they myght not route,
Tooke prysoners and lernyd hem for to loutte.
And efte the duke in semblable wyse
Wrote to the kynge as he fyrste dyd devyse,
Hym excusynge; bot oure meny wode
Wyth grete poure passed overe the floode
And werred forth into the dukes londe
And had neygh destrued free and bonde.
But whan the duke knewe that tho townes thre
Shulde have loste all hys natale cuntree,
He undertoke by sewrte trewe not false
For Mount Seynt Mychelle and Seinte Malouse als
And othere partees of the Lytell Bretaynne,
Whych to obeye, as seyde was, were nott fayne.
The duke hymselfe for all dyd undertake,
Wyth all hys herte a full pease dyd he make,
So that in all the lyffe tyme of the kynge
Marchaundes hadde pease wythowtene werrynge.

He made a statute for Lumbardes in thys londe,
That they shulde in no wysse take on honde
Here to enhabite, to charge and to dyscharge,
But xl. dayes, no more tyme had they large.
Thys goode kynge be wytt of suche appreffe
Kepte hys marchauntes and the see fro myscheffe.

Of the commodites of Scotelonde and drapynge of here woll in Flaundres. The iiij. chapitle.
Moreover of Scotlonde the commoditees
Ar felles, hydes and of wolle the fleesse;
And alle these muste passe bye us aweye
Into Flaundres by Englonde, sothe to saye.
And all here woll was draped for to sell
In the townes of Poperynge and of Bell,
Whyche my lorde of Glowcestre wyth ire
For here falshede dyd sett upon a fyre.
And yett they of Bell and Poperynge
Cowde never draper her woll for any thynge
But if they hadde Englysshe woll wythall,
Oure godely woll that is so generall,
Nedeful to hem in Spayne and Scotlande als
And othere costis; this sentence is not fals.
Ye worthi marchauntes, I do it upon yow;
I have this lerned, ye wott well where and howe.
Ye wotte the staple of that marchaundye
Of this Scotlonde is Flaundres sekerlye.
And the Scottes bene chargede, knowene at the eye,
Out of Flaundres wyth lytyll mercerye
And grete plentee of haburdasshers ware;
And halfe here shippes wyth carte whelys bare
And wyth barowes ar laden as in substaunce.
Thus moste rude ware be in here chevesaunce;
So they may not forbere thys Flemyssh londe.
Therefor if we wolde manly take on honde
To kepe thys see fro Flaundres and fro Spayne
And fro Scotelonde lych as fro Pety Bretayne,
Wee schulde ryght sone have pease for all here bostes,
For they muste nede passe by oure Englysshe costes.

Of the commoditees of Pruse and Hyghe Duchemenne and Esterlynges. The v. chapitle.
Now goo wee forthe to the commoditees
That cometh fro Pruse in too manere degrees;
For too manere peple have suche use,
This is to sayen Highe Duchmene of Pruse
And Esterlynges, whiche myghte not be forborne
Oute of Flaundres but it were verrely lorne.
For they bringe in the substaunce of the beere
That they drynken fele to goode chepe not dere.
Ye have herde that twoo Flemmynges togedere
Wol undertake, or they goo ony whethere
Or they rise onys, to drinke a barell fulle
Of gode berkyne; so sore they hale and pulle,
Undre the borde they pissen as they sitte.
This cometh of covenaunt of a worthy witte.
Wythoute Calise in ther buttere they cakked,
Whan they flede home and when they leysere lakked
To holde here sege; they wente lyke as a doo,
Wel was that Flemmynge that myght trusse and goo.
For fere they turned bake and hyede faste,
Milorde of Gloucestre made hem so agaste
Wyth his commynge and sought hem in here londe
And brente and slowe as he hadde take on honde,
So that oure enmyse durste not byde nor stere;
They flede to mewe, they durste no more appere.
[Thene his meyné ³eidene that he was dede.
Tille we were goo, ther was no bettir reede;
For cowardy knyghthode was aslepe,
As dede there duke in mewe they dide hym kepe,]
Rebukede sore for evere so shamefully
Unto here uttere everelastinge vylany.

After bere and bacone odre gode commodites ensuene.
Now bere and bacone bene fro Pruse ibroughte
Into Flaundres, as loved and fere isoughte,
Osmonde, coppre, bowstaffes, stile and wex,
Peltreware and grey, pych, terre, borde and flex,
And Coleyne threde, fustiane and canvase,
Carde, bokeram; of olde tyme thus it wase.
But the Flemmynges amonge these thinges dere
In comen lowen beste bacon and bere.
[Thus are they hoggishe and drynkyn wele ataunte.
Farewel, Flemmynges, hay haro, hay avaunt.]
Also Pruse mene maken here aventure
Of plate of sylvere, of wegges gode and sure
In grete plente, whiche they bringe and bye
Oute of the londes of B顬me and Hungrye;
Whiche is encrese ful grete unto thys londe.
And thei bene laden agayn, I understonde,
Wyth wollen clothe all manere of coloures
By dyers crafted ful dyverse that bene ours.
And they aventure ful gretly unto the baye
For salte, that is nedefull wythoute naye.
Thus, if they wolde not oure frendys bee,
Wee myght lyghtlye stope hem in the see.
They shulde not passe oure stremes wythoutene leve;
It wolde not be but if we shulde hem greve.

Of the commoditees of the Januays and here grette karekkys. The vi. chapitle.
The Janueys comyne in sondre wyses
Into this londe wyth dyverse marchaundyses
In grete karrekkis arrayde wythouten lake
Wyth clothes of golde; silke and pepir blake
They bringe wyth hem and of woad grete plente,
Woll-oyle, wood-aschen by vessell in the see,
Coton, roche-alum and gode golde of Jene.
And they be charged wyth woll ageyne, I wene,
And wollene clothe of owres of colours all.
And they aventure, as ofte it dothe byfall,
Into Flaundres wyth suche thynge as they bye;
That is here cheffe staple sykerlye.
And if they wold be oure full ennemyse,
They shulde not passe oure stremez with marchaundyse.

The commodites and nycetees of Venicyans and Florentynes with there galees. The vij. capitle.
The grete galees of Venees and Florence
Be wel ladene wyth thynges of complacence,
All spicerye and other grocers ware,
Wyth swete wynes, all manere of chaffare,
Apes and japes and marmusettes taylede,
Nifles, trifles, that litell have availed,
And thynges wyth whiche they fetely blere oure eye,
Wyth thynges not endurynge that we bye.
For moche of thys chaffare that is wastable
Mighte be forborne for dere and dyssevable;
And that I wene as for infirmitees
In oure Englonde are suche comoditees
Wythowten helpe of any other londe,
Whych ben by wytte and prattike bothe ifounde,
That all ill humors myght be voyded sure,
Whych that we gadre wyth oure Englysh cure,
That wee shulde have no nede to skamonye,
Turbit, euforbe, correcte, diagredie,
Rubarbe, sen鬠and yet they bene to nedefulle.
But I knowe wele thynges also spedefull
That growene here as these thynges forseyde.
Lett of this matere no mane be dysmayde,
But that a man may voyde infirmytee
Wythoute drugges fet fro beyonde the see.
And yf there shulde excepte be ony thynge,
It were but sugre, truste to my seyinge;
And he that trustith not to my sentence
Lett hym better serche experience.
In this mater I woll not ferthere prese;
Who so not beleveth let hym leve and cease.

Thus these galeise for this lykynge ware
And etynge ware bere hens oure beste chaffare,
Clothe, woll and tynne, whiche, as I seyde beforne,
Oute of this londe werste myght be forborne;
For eche other londe of necessite
Have grete nede to by some of the thre.
And wee resseyve of hem into this coste
Ware and chaffare that lyghtlye wol be loste.
And wolde Ihesu that oure lordis wolde
Considre this wel, both the yonge and olde,
Namelye the olde that have experience,
That myghte the yonge exorten to prudence.
What harme, what hurte and what hinderaunce
Is done to us unto oure grete grevaunce
Of suche londes and of suche nacions,
As experte men knowe by probacions!
By wretynge ar discured oure counsayles
And false coloured alwey the countertayles
Of oure enmyes, that dothe us hinderinge
Unto oure goodes, oure realme and to the kynge,
As wysse men have shewed well at eye,
And alle this is colowred by marchaundye.

Ane emsampelle of deseytte.
Also they bere the golde oute of thys londe
And souke the thryfte awey oute of oure honde;
As the waffore soukethe honye fro the bee,
So myn? oure commodite.
Now woll ye here how they in Cotteswolde
Were wonte to borowe, or they schulde be solde,
Here wolles gode (as als fro yere to yere
Of clothe and tynne they did in lych manere),
And in her galeys schyppe this marchaundye;
Then sone at Venice of them men wol it bye.
They utterne ther the chaffare be the payse,
And lyghtlye also ther they make her reys.
And whan tho gode bene at Venice solde,
Than to carrye her chaunge they ben full bolde
Into Flaundres; whan they this money have,
They wyll it profre, ther sotelte to save,
To Englysshe marchaundis to yeve it oute by eschaunge.
To be paide agayne they make it nothing straunge
Here in Englonde, semynge for the better,
At the receyvyng and sighte of a letter,
By iiij. penyes losse in the noble rounde,
That is xij. penyes in the golden pounde.
And yf we woll have of paymente
A full monythe, than moste hym nedes assente
To viij. penyes losse, that is shellynges tweyne
In the Englysshe pounde; as efte sones agayne
For ij. monythes xij. penyes muste he paye.
In the Englysshe pounde what is that to seye
But iij. shyllinges? So that in pounde felle
For hurte and harme harde is wyth hem to delle.
And whene Englysshe marchaundys have contente
This eschaunge in Englonde of assente,
Than these seyde Venecians have in wone
And Florentynes to bere here golde sone
Overe the see into Flaundres ageyne;
And thus they lyve in Flaundres, sothe to sayne,
And in London wyth suche chevesaunce
That men call usure to oure losse and hinderaunce.

Anothere exemple of disceytte.
Now lestene welle how they made us a baleys,
Whan they borowed at the toune of Caleys,
As they were wonte, ther woll that was hem lente;
For yere and yere they schulde make paymente,
And sometyme als for too yere and too yere.
This was fayre lone; but yett woll ye here
How they to Bruges wolde her wolles carye
And for hem take paymente wythowten tarye
And sell it faste for redy money in honde
(For fifty pounde of losse thei wolde not wonde
In a thowsande pounde) and lyve therebye
Tyll the day of paymente easylye,
Some gayne ageyne in exchaunge makynge,
Full lyke usurie as men make undertakynge.
Than whan thys payment of a thowsande pounde
Was well contente, they shulde have chaffare sounde
Yff they wolde fro the staple at the full
Reseyve ageyne ther thousande pounde in woll.
[And thus they wolde, if ye will so beleve,
Wypen our nose with our owne sleve.
Thow this proverbe be homly and undew,
Yet be liklynesse it is for soth full trew.]
In Cotteswolde also they ryde aboute
And al Englonde and bien wythouten doute
What them liste wythe fredome and fraunchise,
More then we Englisshe may getyn in any wyse.
But wolde God that wythoute lenger delayse
These galeise were unfraught in xl. daies
And in tho xl. dayes were charged ageyne,
And that they myght be put to certeyne
To go to oste, as wee there wyth hem doo.
It were expediente that they did right soo,
As wee do there; for, if the kynge wolde itt,
A! what worschip wold fall to Englysshe witte!
What profite also to oure marchaundye,
Whiche wolde of nede be cherisshed hartelye!
For I wolde wete why nowe owre navey fayleth,
Whan many a foo us at oure dorre assayleth,
Now in these dayes that, if there come a nede,
What navey shulde wee have it is to drede.
In Denmarke were full noble conquerours
In tyme passed, full worthy werriours,
Whiche when they had here marchaundes destroyde,
To poverte they fell, thus were they noyede,
And so they stonde at myscheffe at this daye.
This lerned I late well wryten, this is no naye.
Therefore beware, I can no better wylle,
Yf grace it woll, of other mennys perylle.
For yef marchaundes were cherysshede to here spede,
We were not lykelye to fayle in ony nede;
Yff they bee riche, thane in prosperite
Schalbe oure londe, lordes and comonte.
And in worship nowe think I on the sonne
Of marchaundy Richarde of Whitingdone,
That loodes sterre and chefe chosen floure.
Whate hathe by hym oure England of honoure,
And whate profite hathe bene of his richesse,
And yet lasteth dayly in worthinesse,
That penne and papere may not me suffice
Him to describe, so high he was of prise,
Above marchaundis to sett him one the beste!
I can no more, but God have hym in reste.

Nowe the principalle matere.
What reason is it that wee schulde go to oste
In there cuntrees and in this Englisshe coste
They schulde not so, but have more liberte
Than wee oure selfe? Now, all so mot I the,
I wolde men shulde to geftes take no hede,
That lettith oure thinge publique for to spede.
For this wee see well every day at eye,
Geftes and festes stopene oure pollicye.
Now se that fooles bene eyther they or wee;
But evere wee have the warse in this contre.
Therefore lett hem unto ooste go wyth us here,
Or be wee free wyth hem in like manere
In there cuntres; and if it woll not bee,
Compelle them unto ooste and ye shall see
Moche avauntage and muche profite arise,
Moche more than I write can in any wyse.

Of oure charge and discharge at here martes.
Conseyve well here that Englyssh men at martes
Be discharged, for all her craftes and artes,
In the Braban of all here marchaundy
In xiiij. dayes and ageyne hastely
In the same dayes xiiij. are charged efte.
And yf they byde lengere, alle is berefte;
Anone they schulde forfet here godes all
Or marchaundy, it schulde no bettere fall.
And wee to martis of Braban charged bene
Wyth Englyssh clothe, full gode and feyre to seyne.
Wee bene ageyne charged wyth mercerye,
Haburdasshere ware and wyth grocerye.
To whyche martis, that Englissh men call feyres,
Iche nacion ofte maketh here repayeres.
Englysshe and Frensh, Lumbardes, Januayes,
Cathᬯnes, theder they take here wayes;
Scottes, Spaynardes, Iresshmen there abydes,
Whiche grete plente bringen of salte hydes.
And I here saye that wee in Braban bye
Flaundres and Seland more of marchaundy
In comon use then done all other nacions;
This have I herde of marchaundes relacions.
And yff the Englysshe be not in the martis,
They bene febell and as noughte bene here partes;
For they bye more and more fro purse put oute
For marchaundy than all the othere route.
Kepte than the see, shyppes schulde not bringe ne feche,
And than the carreys wolde not theder streche;
And so tho martes wolde full evel thee,
Yf wee manly kepte aboute the see.

Of the commoditees of Brabane and Selande and Henaulde and marchaundyses caryed by londe to the martes. The viij. chapitle.
The marchaundy of Brabane and Selande
Be madre and woade, that dyers take one hande
To dyen wythe, garleke and onyons,
And saltfysche als for husbond and comons.
But they of Holonde at Caleyse byene oure felles
And oure wolles that Englysshe men hem selles,
And the chefare that Englysshe men do byene
In the martis, that no man may denyene,
It is not made in Brabane that cuntre.
It commeth frome oute of Henaulde, not be the see
But all by londe by carris and frome Fraunce,
Burgoyne, Coleyn, Camerete in substaunce.
Therfore at martis yf there be a restereynte,
Men seyne pleynly, that liste no fables peynte,
Yf Englysshe men be wythdrawene awey,
Is grete rebuke and losse to here affraye,
As thoughe wee sent into the londe of Fraunce
Tenne thousande peple, men of gode puissaunce,
To werre unto her hynderynge multiphary;
So bene oure Englysshe marchauntes necessary.
Yf it be thus assay and ye schall weten
Of men experte by whome I have this wryten.
For seyde is that this carted marchaundye
Drawethe in valew as moche verralye
As all the gode that commethe in shippes thedyre,
Whyche Englisshe men bye moste and bryng it hedire;
For here martis bene feble, shame to saye,
But if Englisshe men thedir dresse here waye.

Conclusione of this deppendinge of kepinge of the see.
Than I conclude, yff nevere so moche by londe
Werre by carres ibrought unto there honde,
Yff well the see were kepte in governaunce,
They shulde by see have no delyveraunce.
Wee shulde hem stoppe and wee shulde hem destroy,
As prysoners wee shulde hem brynge to noy.
And so wee shulde of oure cruell enmysse
Maken oure frendes for fere of marchaundysse,
Yff they were not suffred for to passe
Into Flaundres; but wee be frayle as glasse
And also bretyll, not tough, nevere abydynge.
But when grace shyneth sone are wee slydynge;
Wee woll it not reseyve in any wysse,
That maken luste, envye and covetysse.
Expoune me this and ye shall sothe it fynde;
Bere it aweye and kepe it in youre mynde.

The nayle of thys conclusione.
Than shulde worshyp unto oure noble be,
In feet and forme to lorde and mageste.
Liche as the seale, the grettest of thys londe,
On the one syde hathe, as I understonde,
A prince rydynge wyth hys swerde idrawe,
In the other syde sittynge, sothe is this sawe,
Betokenynge goode reule and ponesshynge
In verry dede of Englande by the kynge
(And hit is so, God blessyd mote he bee);
So one lychewysse I wolde were on the see.
By the noble that swerde schulde have powere
And the shippes one the see aboute us here.
What nedeth a garlande whyche is made of ivye
Shewe a taverne wynelesse? Nowe, also thryve I,
Yf men were wyse, the Frenshemen and Flemmynge
Shulde bere no state in the see by werrynge.

Of Hankyne Lyons.
Thane Hankyn Lyons shulde not be so bolde
To stoppe us and oure shippes for to holde
Unto oure shame; he hadde be betene thens.
Allas, allas, why dede wee this offence
Fully to shende the olde Englisshe fames
And the profittes of Englonde and there names?
Why is this powdre called of covetise
Wyth fals colours caste thus beforne oure eyes?
That, if goode men called werryours
Wolde take in hand for the comon socours
To purge the see unto oure grete avayle
And wynne hem gode, and to have up the sayle
And one oure enmyes there lives to juparte,
So that they myght there pryses well departe,
As reason wolde, justice and equite,
To make this lande have lordeshyp of the sea,
Than shall Lumbardes and other feyned frendes
Make her chalenges by coloure false of fendes
And sey ther chafare in the shippes is
And chalenge all. Loke yf this be amisse.
For thus may all that men have bought to sore
Ben sone excused and saved by false coloure.
Beware ye men that bere the grete on honde,
That they destroy the polycye of this londe
By gifte and goode and the fyne golden clothes
And silke and othere. Sey ye not this sothe is?
Bot if ye hadde verry experience
That they take mede wyth pryve violence,
Carpettis and thynges of price and of pleysaunce,
Whereby stopped shulde be gode governaunce,
And if it were as ye seye unto me,
Than wolde I seye, allas, cupidite,
That they that have here lyves put in drede
Schalbe sone oute of wynnynge al for mede,
And lese here costes and brought to poverte,
That they shall nevere have luste to go to see.

Sterynge to an ordinaunce ayens coloure of maynteners and excusers.
For thys colour, that muste be seyde alofte
And be declared of the grete fulle ofte,
That oure seemen woll by many wyse
Spoylle oure frendys in stede of oure enmyse-
For thys coloure and Lumbardes mayntenaunce
The kynge it nedeth to make an ordinaunce
Wyth hys counsell, that may not fayle, I trowe,
That frendes shuld frome enmyes well be knowe,
Oure enmyes taken and oure frendes spared;
The remedy of hem muste be declared.
Thus may the see be kept now in no sele,
For, if ought be taken, wotte ye weel,
Wee have the strokes and enmyes have the wynnynge;
But maynteners ar parteners of the synnynge.
Wee lyve in luste and byde in covetyse;
This is oure reule to mayntene marchaundyse,
And polycye that we have on the see,
And, but God helpe, it woll none other bee.

Of the commoditees of Irelonde and policye and kepynge therof and conquerynge of wylde Iryshe, wyth an incident of Walys. The ix. chapitle.
I caste to speke of Irelonde but a lytelle.
Commoditees of it I woll entitell
Hydes and fish, samon, hake and herynge;
Irish wollen and lynyn cloth, faldynge,
And marterns gode bene in here marchaundye;
Hertys hydes and other hydes of venerye,
Skynnes of oter, squerel and Irysh hare,
Of shepe, lambe and fox is here chaffare,
Felles of kydde and conyes grete plente.
So that yf Irelond halpe us to kepe the see,
Because the kynge clepid is rex Anglie
And is dominus also Hibernie,
Of old possessyd by progenitours,
The Yrichemen have cause lyke to oures
Oure londe and herres togedre to defende,
So that none enmye shulde hurte ne offende
Yrelonde ne us, but as one comonte
Shulde helpe to kepe well aboute the see.
For they have havenes grete and godely bayes,
Sure, wyde and depe and of ryght gode assayes
Att Waterforde and coostes monye one;
And, as men seyn, in England be there none
Better havenes for shyppes in to ryde,
Ne none more sure for enmyes to abyde.

Why speke I thus so muche of Yrelonde?
For also muche as I can understonde,
It is fertyle for thynge that there do growe
And multiplyen, loke who so lust to knowe,
So large, so gode and so comodyouse
That to declare is straunge and merveylouse.
For of sylvere and golde there is the oore
Amonge the wylde Yrishe, though they be pore,
For they ar rude and can thereone no skylle;
So that, if we had there pese and gode wylle
To myne and fyne and metall for to pure,
In wylde Yrishe myght we fynde the cure.
As in Londone seyth a juellere,
Whych brought from thens gold oore to us here,
Wherof was fyned metalle gode and clene,
That at the touche no bettere coude be sene.
Nowe here beware and hertly take entente,
As ye woll answere at the laste jugemente,
That, but for sloughe and for recheleshede,
Ye remembere and wyth all youre myghte take hede
To kepen Yrelond that it be not loste,
For it is a boterasse and a poste
Undre England, and Wales is another.
God forbede but eche were othere brothere,
Of one ligeaunce dewe unto the kynge.
But I have pite in gode feythe of thys thynge,
That I shall saye wythe gode avysemente
I ham aferde that Yrelonde wol be shente;
It muste awey, it woll be loste frome us,
But if thow helpe, thow Ihesu graciouse,
And yeve us grase all sloughte to leve bysyde.
For myche thynge in my harte is ihyde,
Whyche in another tretyse I caste to wrytte,
Made all onelye for that soyle and site
Of fertile Yerelonde, whiche myghte not be forborne
But if Englond were nyghe as gode as lorne.
God forebede that a wylde Yrishe wyrlynge
Shulde be chosene for to be there kynge
Aftere here conqueste of oure laste puisshaunce
And hyndere us by other londes allyaunce.
Wyse mene seyne, whyche folyne not ne dotyne,
That wylde Yrishe so muche of grounde have gotyne
There upon us, as lykelynesse may be,
Lyke as England to shires two or thre
Of thys oure londe is made comparable;
So wylde Yrishe have wonne on us unable
It to defenden and of none powere,
That oure grounde there is a lytell cornere
To all Yrelonde in treue comparisone.
It nedeth no more this matere to expone.
Which if it be loste, as Criste Ihesu forbede,
Farewell Wales; than Englond cometh to drede
For alliaunce of Scotlonde and of Spayne
And other moo, as the Pety Bretayne,
And so to have enmyes environ aboute.
I beseche God that some prayers devoute
Mutt lett the seyde apparaunce probable.
Thys is disposed wythought feyned fable,
But alle onely for parelle that I see
Thus ymynent as lykely for to be.
And well I wott that frome hens to Rome,
And, as men sey, in alle Cristendome,
There ys no grounde ne land to Yreland lyche,
So large, so gode, so plenteouse, so riche,
That to this worde Dominus dothe longe.
Than me semyth that ryght were and not wronge
To gete that lond, and it were piteouse
To us to lese thys hygh name Dominus;
And all this worde Dominus of name
Shulde have the grounde obeisaunte, wylde and tame,
That name and peple togedere myght accorde,
And all the grounde be subjecte to the lorde.
And that it is possible to be subjecte
Unto the kynge well shall it be detecte
In the lytell boke that I of spake;
I trowe reson all this woll undertake.
And I knowe well with Irland howe it stant.
Allas, fortune begynneth so to scant,
Or ellis grace, that dede is governaunce;
For so mynusshyth partyes of oure puissaunce
In that land that we lesen every yere
More grounde and more, as well as ye may here.
I herde a man speke unto me full late,
Whyche was a lorde and of ful grete astate,
That exspenses of one yere don in Fraunce,
Werred on men well wylled of puissaunce
Thys seyde grounde of Yrelonde to conquere,
(And yit because Englonde myght not forbere
These seyde exspenses gedred in one yere,
But in iij. yere or iiij. gadred up here)
Myght wynne Yrelonde to a fynall conquest
In one soole yere, to sett us all in reste.
And how sone wolde thys be payde ageyne,
What were it worthe yerely, yf wee not feyne,
I wylle declaren, who so luste to looke,
I trowe ful pleynly in my lytell boke.
But covetyse and singularite
Of owne profite, envye, carnalite
Hathe done us harme and doo us every daye,
And mustres made that shame it is to saye,
Oure money spente all to lytell avayle;
And oure enmyes so gretely done prevayle,
That what harme may falle and overthwerte
I may unneth wrytte more for sore of herte.

An exhortacione to the kepynge of Walys.
Beware of Walys, Criste Ihesu mutt us kepe,
That it make not oure childes childe to wepe,
Ne us also, if so it go his waye
By unwarenesse; sethen that many a day
Men have be ferde of here rebellione
By grete tokenes and ostentacione.
Seche the menys wyth a discrete avyse,
And helpe that they rudely not aryse
For to rebellen; that Criste it forbede
Loke well aboute, for God wote we have nede,
Unfayllyngly, unfeynynge and unfeynte,
That conscience for slought you not atteynte.
Kepe well that grounde for harme that may ben used,
Or afore God mutt ye bene accused.

Of the comodius stokfysshe of Yselonde and kepynge of the see, namely the narowe see, wyth an incident of the kepynge of Calyse. The tenne chapitule.
Of Yseland to wryte is lytill nede
Save of stokfische; yit for sothe in dede
Out of Bristow and costis many one
Men have practised by nedle and by stone
Thiderwardes wythine a lytel whylle,
Wythine xij. yeres, and wythoute parille,
Gone and comen, as men were wonte of olde
Of Scarborowgh, unto the costes colde.
And now so fele shippes thys yere there were
That moche losse for unfraught they bare.
Yselond myght not make hem to be fraught
Unto the hawys; this moche harme they caught.

Thene here I ende of the comoditees
For whiche grete nede is well to kepe the sees.
Este and weste and sowthe and northe they be,
And chefely kepe sharply the narowe see
Betwene Dover and Caleise, and as thus
That foes passe not wythought godewyll of us,
And they abyde oure daunger in the lenghte,
What for oure costis and Caleise in oure strenghte.

An exortacion of the sure kepynge of Calise.
And for the love of God and of his blisse
Cherishe ye Caleise better than it is.
See well therto and here the grete compleynte
That trewe men tellen, that woll no lies peynte,
And as ye knowe that writynge commyth from thens.
Do not to England for sloughte so grete offens
But that redressed it be for ony thynge,
Leste a songe of sorow that wee synge.
For lytell wenythe the fole, who so myght chese,
What harme it were gode Caleise for to lese,
What woo it were for all this Englysshe grounde.
Whiche well conceyved the emperoure Sigesmounde,
That of all joyes made it one the moste
That Caleise was soget unto Englyssh coste.
Hym thought it was a jewel moste of alle,
And so the same in latyn did it calle.
And if ye woll more of Caleise here and knowe,
I caste to writte wythine a litell scrowe,
Lyke as I have done byforene by and bye
In othir parties of oure pollicie.
Loke well how harde it was at the firste to gete,
And by my counsell lyghtly be it not lete.
For, if wee leese it wyth shame of face,
Wylfully it is, it is for lake of grace.
Howe was Hareflewe cryed upon at Rone
That it were likely for slought to be gone!
How was it warened and cryed on in Englonde!
I make recorde wyth this penne in myne honde,
It was warened pleynly in Normandye
And in England, and I thereone dyd crye.
The worlde was deef, and it betid ryght soo.
Farewell Hareflewe, leudely it was agoo.
Now ware Caleise, for I can sey no bettere;
My soule discharge I by this presente lettere.

Aftere the chapitles of commoditees of dyuerse landes shewyth the conclusione of kepynge of the see environ by a storye of kynge Edgare and ij. incidentes of kynge Edwarde the iijde and kynge Herry the vth. The xi. chapitle.
Now see well thane that in this rounde see
To oure noble be paryformytee.
Within the shypp is shewyd there the sayle
And oure kynge of royall apparaylle,
Wyth swerde drawen, bryght, sharp and extente,
For to chastisen enmyes vyolente;
So shulde he be lorde of the see aboute,
To kepe enmyes fro wythine and wythoute,
And to be holde thorowgh Cristianyte
Master and lorde environ of the see,
For all lyvinge men suche a prince to drede,
Of suche a regne to be aferde indede.
Thus prove I well that it was thus of olde,
Whiche by a cronicle anone shalbe tolde,
Ryght curiouse (but I woll interprete
Hit into Englishe as I did it gete)
Of kynge Edgare, oo the moste merveyllouse
Prince lyvynge, wytty and moste chevalrouse,
So gode that none of his predecessours
Was to hym lyche in prudens and honours.
He was fort?and more gracious
Then other before and more glorious;
He was benethe no man in holinesse;
He passed alle in vertuuse swetenesse.
Of Englysshe kynges was none so commend᢬e
To Englysshe men, ne lasse memori᢬e
Than Cirus was to Perse by puissaunce;
And as grete Charlis was to them of Fraunce,
And as to Romains was grete Romulus,
So was to England this worthy Edgarus.
I may not write more of his worthynesse
For lake of tyme ne of his holynesse,
But to my mater I hym examplifie
Of condicions tweyne of his policie.
Wythine his land was one, this is no doute,
And anothere in the see wythoute,
That in the tyme of wynter and of vere,
Whan boistous wyndes put seemen into fere,
Wythine his lande aboute by all provinces
He passyd thorowghe, perceyvynge his princes,
Lordes and othir of the commontee,
Who was oppressoure, and who to poverte
Was drawe and broughte, and who was clene in lyffe,
And who was falle by myscheffe and by stryffe
Wyth overeledynge and extorcione;
And gode and bad of eche condicione
He aspied and his mynisters als,
Who did trought and whiche of hem was fals,
And how the ryght and lawes of his londe
Were execute, and who durste take on honde
To disobeye his statutes and decrees,
And yf they were well kepte in all cuntrees.
Of these he made subtile investigacione
By hys owyne espye and other mens relacione.
Amonge othyr was his grete besines
Well to bene ware that grete men of rycchesse
And men of myght in citee ner in toune
Shuld to the pore doo none oppressione.
Thus was he wonte as in this wynter tyde
One suche enserchise busily to abyde.
This was his laboure for the publique thinge;
This occupied a passynge holy kynge.

Now to the purpose, in the somer fayre
Of lusty season, whan clered was the eyre,
He had redy shippes made by him before,
Grete and huge, not fewe but manye a score,
Full thre thousande and sex hundred also,
Statelye inowgh on any see to goo.
The cronicle seyth these shippes were full boisteous;
Suche thinges longen to kynges victorious.
In somere tide wolde he have in wone
And in custome to be full redy sone
Wyth multitude of men of gode array
And instrumentis of werre of beste assay.
Who coude hem well in ony wyse descrive?
Hit were not lyght for ony man on lyve.
Thus he and his wolde entre shippes grete,
Habilementis havynge and the fete
Of see werres, that joyfull was to see
Suche a naveie and lord of mageste
There present in persone hem amonge,
To saile and rowe environ all alonge
So regaliche aboute the Englisshe yle,
To all straungeours a terroure and perille.
Whose soune wente oute in all the world aboute
Unto grete ferre of all that be wythoute,
And exercise to knyghtes and his meyn鼢r> To hym longynge of his natall contr鬼br> (For corage muste of nede have exercise)
Thus occupied for esshewynge of vise.
This knewe the kynge, that policie espied;
Wynter and somer he was thus occupied.
And thus conclude I by auctorite
Of cronicle that environ the see
Shulde bene oures subjecte unto the kynge,
And he be lorde therof for ony thynge,
For grete worship and for profite also,
And to defende his londe fro every foo.

That worthy kynge I leve, Edgar by name,
And all the cronique of his worthy fame;
Save onely this, I may not passe awey
A word of myghty strenght til that I seye,
That grauntyd hym God suche worship here
For his meritis he was wythouten pere,
That sumtyme at his grete festivite
Kynges and yerles of many a contre
And of provinces fele were there presente,
And mony lordes come thidere by assente
To his worship. But in a certayne daye
He bade shippes be redy of arraye,
For to visite seynte Jonys chyrche he lyste,
Rowynge unto the gode holy Baptiste.
He assyned to yerles, lordes, knyghtes
Many shippes ryght godely to syghtes;
And for hymselfe and for viij. kynges mo
Subdite to hym he made kepe one of tho,
A gode shipp, and entred into it
Wyth tho viij. kynges, and doune did they sit.
And eche of them an ore toke in honde
At the ore holes, as I understonde,
And he hymselfe satte in the shipp behynde
As sterisman; it hym becam of kynde.
Suche another rowynge, I dare well saye,
Was not sene of princes many a day.
Lo than how he on waters had the price,
In land, in see, that I may not suffice
To tell aright the magnanimite
That this kynge Edgar had upon the see.

An incident of the lorde of the see kynge Edwarde the thredde.
Of kynge Edwarde I passe and his prowesse;
On londe, on see ye knowe his worthynesse.
The siege of Caleise ye wote well all the mater,
Rounde aboute by londe and by the water
How it lasted not yeres many agoo,
After the bataille of Crecy was idoo
How it was closed environ aboute.
Olde men sawe it whiche lyven, this is no doute.
Olde knyghtis sey that the duke of Burgoyne,
Late rebuked for all his golden coyne,
Of shipp and see made no besegynge there.
For wante of shippes, that durste not come for fere,
It was no thynge beseged by the see;
Thus calle they it no seage for honeste.
Gonnes assayled, but assaute was there none,
No sege but fuge; well was he that myght gone.
This manere carpynge have knyghtes ferre in age,
Experte of olde in this manere langage.
But kynge Edwarde made a sege royall
And wanne the toune, and in especiall
The see was kepte and thereof he was lorde;
Thus made he nobles coigned of recorde.
In whose tyme was no navey in the see
That myght wythstonde the power of hys mageste.
The bataylle of Sluce ye may rede every day;
How it was done I leve and go my way.
Hit was so late done that ye it knowe,
In comparison wythine a lytel throwe.
For whiche to God yeve we honoure and glorye,
For lorde of see the kynge was wyth victó²¹¥.

Anothere incident of kepynge of the see in the tyme of the merveillouse werroure and victorius prince kynge Herry the vth and of his grete shippes.
And yf I shulde conclude al by the kynge
Henry the fifte, what was hys purposynge
Whan at Hampton he made the grete dromons,
Which passed other grete shippes of all the comons,
The Trinite, the Grace Dieu, the Holy Goste
And other moo, whiche as now be loste?
What hope ye was the kynges grette entente
Of tho shippes and what in mynde he mente?
It was not ellis but that he caste to be
Lorde rounde aboute environ of the see.
And whan Harflew had his sege aboute,
There came carikkys orrible, grete and stoute,
In the narowe see wyllynge to abyde,
To stoppe us there wyth multitude of pride.
My lorde of Bedeforde came one and had the cure;
Destroyde they were by that discomfiture,
(This was after the kynge Hareflew had wonne,
Whane oure enmyes to besege had begonne)
That all was slayne or take by treue relacione
To his worship and of his Englisshe nacione.
Ther was presente the kynges chamburleyne
At bothe batayles, whiche knowethe this in certayne;
He can it tell other wyse than I.
Aske hym and witt; I passe forthe hastelye.
What had this kynge of high magnificens,
Of grete corage, of wysdome and prudence,
Provision, forewitte, audacite,
Of fortitude, justice, agilite,
Discrecion, subtile avisifenesse,
Atemperaunce, noblesse and worthynesse,
Science, proesce, devocion, equyte,
Of moste estately magnanimite,
Liche to Edgare and the seyd Edwarde,
A braunche of bothe, lyche hem as in regarde!
Where was on lyve man more victoriouse,
And in so shorte tyme prince so mervelouse?
By lande and see so well he hym acquite,
To speke of hym I stony in my witte.

Thus here I leve the kynge wyth his noblesse,
Henry the fifte, wyth whome all my processe
Of this trewe boke of the pure pollicie
Of see kepinge entendynge victorie
I leve endely, for aboute in the see
No better was prince of strenuite.
And if he had to this tyme lyved here,
He had bene prince named wythouten pere;
His grete shippes shulde have bene put in preffe
Unto the ende that he mente of in cheffe.
For doute it nat but that he wolde have be
Lorde and master aboute the rounde see,
And kepte it sure, to stoppe oure enmyes hens,
And wonne us gode and wysely brought it thens,
That no passage shulde be wythought daungere
And his licence on see to meve and stere.

Of unité ³hewynge of oure kepynge of the see, wyth ane endely processe of pease by auctorite. The xij. chapitule.
Now than, for love of Cryste and of his joye,
Brynge yit Englande out of troble and noye;
Take herte and witte and set a governaunce,
Set many wittes wythouten variaunce
To one acorde and unanimite
Put to gode wylle for to kepe the see,
Furste for worshyp and for profite also,
And to rebuke of eche evyl-wylled foo.
Thus shall richesse and worship to us longe,
Than to the noble shall wee do no wronge,
To bere that coigne in figure and in dede,
To oure corage and to oure enmyes drede;
For whiche they muste dresse hem to pease in haste,
Or ellis there thrifte to standen and to waste,
As this processe hathe proved by and bye,
All by reason and experte policie,
And by stories whiche preved well this parte,
And elles I woll my lyffe put in jeparte.
But many landes wolde seche her peace for nede;
The see well kepte, it must be do for drede.
Thus muste Flaundres for nede have unite
And pease wyth us, it woll none other bee,
Wythine shorte while, and ambassiatours
Wolde bene here sone to trete for ther socours.
This unité ©s to Goddes plesaunce,
And pease after the werres variaunce;
The ende of bataile is pease sikerlye,
And power causeth pease finall verily.

Kepe than the see abought in speciall,
Whiche of England is the rounde wall,
As thoughe England were lykened to a cite
And the wall environ were the see.
Kepe than the see, that is the wall of Englond,
And than is Englond kepte by Goddes sonde;
That, as for ony thinge that is wythoute,
Englande were than at ease wythouten doute,
And thus shuld everi lande, one with another,
Entrecomon as brother wyth his brother,
And live togedre werreles in unite
Wythoute rancoure in verry charite,
In reste and pese to Cristis grete plesaunce,
Wythouten striffe, debate and variaunce.
Whiche pease men shulde enserche with besinesse
And knytt it sadely, holdyng in holynesse.
The apostil seyth, if that ye liste to see,
'Be ye busy for to kepe unite
Of the spirite in the bonde of pease,'
Whiche is nedefull to all wythouten lees.
The profete bideth us pease for to enquere;
To purseue it, this is holy desire.
Oure lord Ihesu seith 'Blessid mot they be
That maken pease', that is tranquillite;
For 'peasemakers', as Mathew writeth aryght,
'Shall be called the sonnes of God Allmight'.
God yeve us grace the weyes for to kepe
Of his preceptis and slugly not to slepe
In shame of synne, that oure verry foo
Mow be to us convers and torned too.
For in Proverbis a texte is to purpose
And pleyne inowgh wythouten ony glose,
'Whan mennes weyes please unto oure Lorde,
It shall converte and brynge to accorde
Mannes enmyes unto the pease verray',
In unité ´o live to Goddis pay.
Whiche unit鬠pease, reste and charite
He that was here cladde in humanite,
That came from hevyne and stiede with our nature
(Or he ascendid he yafe to oure cure
And lefte us pease ageyne striffe and debate),
Mote gefe us-pease so well iradicate
Here in this worlde that after att his feste
Wee mowe have pease in the londe of beheste,
Jerusalem, which of pease is the sight,
Wyth the bryghtnes of his eternall lighte,
There glorified in reste wyth his tuicione,
The Deite to see wyth full fruicione.
He secunde persone in divinenesse is;
He us assume and brynge us to his blisse.


Here endithe the trewe processe of the libelle of Englysshe policie, exhortynge all Englande to kepe the see environ and namely the narowe see, shewynge whate worshipe, profite and salvacione commeth thereof to the reigne of Englonde, etc.
Go furthe, libelle, and mekely shewe thy face,
Apperynge ever wyth humble contynaunce,
And pray my lordes thee to take in grace
In opposaile and, cherishynge thee, avaunce
To hardynesse, if that not variaunce
Thow haste fro troughte by full experience,
Auctours and reasone; yif ought faile in substaunce,
Remitte to heme that yafe thee this science.

Sythen that it is sothe in verray feythe
That the wyse lorde baron of Hungerforde
Hathe thee oversene, and verrily he seithe
That thow arte trewe, and thus he dothe recorde,
Nexte the Gospell: God wotte it was his worde,
Whanne he thee redde all over in a nyghte.
Go forthe, trewe booke, and Criste defende thi ryghte.

Explicit libellus de policia conservativa maris.

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gazing up at the sky
I know that many have reasons why
they believe in it all
but others prosecutions make them fall

Why? why do we believe in it anyhow?
ask us believers and we will surely avow
but we have no proof to share
us believers will declare that is is there.

rarely will we doubt it-
barely holding it to be touchable-y true
because we are unfairly doubted
but our proof lies in the love He supplies

to be in heaven is to be with the Lord
to know heaven is to know the Lord
to walk to heaven is to walk the paths of the Lord
to love heaven is to love God.

even if we followers are proven to be wrong
in the end, did we not end up where we belonged all along?
we were never with out God
so go on believing that our belief in heaven is odd.

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The World's All Right

Be honest, kindly, simple, true;
Seek good in all, scorn but pretence;
Whatever sorrow come to you,
Believe in Life's Beneficence!

The World's all right; serene I sit,
And cease to puzzle over it.
There's much that's mighty strange, no doubt;
But Nature knows what she's about;
And in a million years or so
We'll know more than to-day we know.
Old Evolution's under way --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

Could things be other than they are?
All's in its place, from mote to star.
The thistledown that flits and flies
Could drift no hair-breadth otherwise.
What is, must be; with rhythmic laws
All Nature chimes, Effect and Cause.
The sand-grain and the sun obey --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

Just try to get the Cosmic touch,
The sense that "you" don't matter much.
A million stars are in the sky;
A million planets plunge and die;
A million million men are sped;
A million million wait ahead.
Each plays his part and has his day --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

Just try to get the Chemic view:
A million million lives made "you".
In lives a million you will be
Immortal down Eternity;
Immortal on this earth to range,
With never death, but ever change.
You always were, and will be aye --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

Be glad! And do not blindly grope
For Truth that lies beyond our scope:
A sober plot informeth all
Of Life's uproarious carnival.
Your day is such a little one,
A gnat that lives from sun to sun;
Yet gnat and you have parts to play --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

And though it's written from the start,
Just act your best your little part.
Just be as happy as you can,
And serve your kind, and die -- a man.
Just live the good that in you lies,
And seek no guerdon of the skies;
Just make your Heaven here, to-day --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

Remember! in Creation's swing
The Race and not the man's the thing.
There's battle, murder, sudden death,
And pestilence, with poisoned breath.
Yet quick forgotten are such woes;
On, on the stream of Being flows.
Truth, Beauty, Love uphold their sway --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

The World's all right; serene I sit,
And joy that I am part of it;
And put my trust in Nature's plan,
And try to aid her all I can;
Content to pass, if in my place
I've served the uplift of the Race.
Truth! Beauty! Love! O Radiant Day --
What ho! the World's all right, I say.

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The Legend of Lady Gertrude

Fallen the lofty halls, where vassal crowds
Drank in the dawn of Gertrude's natal day.
The dungeon roof an Alpine snow-wreath shrouds,
The strong, wild eagle's eyrie in the clouds—
The robber-baron's nest—is swept away.

Bare is the mountain brow of lordly towers;
Only the sunbeams stay, the moon and stars,
The faithful saxifrage and gentian flowers,
The silvery mist, and soft, white, crystal showers,
And torrents rushing through their rocky bars.

More than three hundred years ago, the flag
Charged with that dread device, an Alpine bear—
By many storm-winds rent—a grim, grey rag—
Floated above the castle on the crag,
Above the last whose heads were shelter'd there.

He was the proudest of an ancient race,
The fiercest of the robber chieftain's band,
That haughty Freiherr, with the iron face:
And she—his lady-sister, by God's grace—
The sweetest, gentlest maiden in the land.

'Twas a rude nest for such a tender bird,
That lonely fortress, with its warrior-lord.
Aye drunken revels the night-stillness stirred;
From morn till eve the battle-cries were heard,
The sound of jingling spur and clanking sword.

And Lady Gertrude was both young and fair,

A mark for lawless hearts and roving eyes,—
With sweet, grave face, and amber-tinted hair,
And a low voice soft-thrilling through the air,
Filling it full of subtlest melodies.

But the great baron, proudest of his line,
Fetter'd, with jealous care, his white dove's wing;
Guarded his treasure in an inner shrine,
Till such a day as knightly hands should twine
Her slender fingers with the marriage-ring.

From all her household rights was she debarred—
Her chair and place within the castle-hall,
Her palfrey's saddle in the castle-yard,
Her nursing ministries when blows fell hard
In border struggles—she was kept from all.

A stone-paved chamber, and the parapet
Opening above its winding turret-stair;
The castle-chapel, where few men were met,—
Round these the brother's boundaries were set.
The sweet child-sister was so very fair!

She had her faithful nurse, her doves, her lute,
Her broidery and her distaff, and the hound—
Best prized of all—the grand, half-human brute,
Who aye watched near her, beautiful and mute,
With ears love-quicken'd, listening from the ground.

But the wild bird, so honourably caged,
Grew sick and sad in its captivity;
Longed—like those hills which time nor storm had aged,
And those deep glens where Danube waters raged—
In God's own wind and sunshine to be free.

And on a day, when she had seen them ride,
Baron and troopers, on some border raid,
Wooed by the glory of the summer tide,
The hound's soft-slouching footstep at her side,
Adown the valley Lady Gertrude stray'd.

Adown the crag, whose shadow, still and black,
Lay like the death-sleep on a mountain pool;
Through rocky glen, by silvery torrent's track,
Through forest glade, 'neath wild vines, fluttering back
From softest zephyr kisses, green and cool.

E'en till the woods and hamlets down below,
And summer meadows, were all broad and clear;
The river, moving statelily and slow,
A crimson ribbon in the sunset glow—
The dim, white, distant city strangely near.

She sat her down, a-weary, on the ground,
With tremulous long-drawn breath and wistful eyes;
Caress'd the velvet muzzle of the hound,
And listen'd vainly for some little sound
To come up from her world of mysteries.

She had forgotten of the time and place,
When clank of warrior's harness smote her dream.
A growl, a spring, a shadow on her face,
And one strode up, with slow and stately pace,
And stood before her in the soft sun-gleam.

An armèd knight, in noblest knightly guise,
From golden spur to golden dragon-crest;
Through open vizor gazing with surprise
Into the fair, flush'd face and startled eyes,
While horse and hound stood watchfully at rest.

The sun went down, and, with long, stealthy stride,
The shadows came, blurring the summer light;
And there was none the lady's step to guide
Up the lost pathway on the mountain-side—
None to protect her but this stranger knight!

He placed her gently on his dappled grey,
Clothed in his mantle—for the air was chill;
He led her all the long and devious way,
Through glens, where starless night held royal sway,
And vine-tressed woodlands, where the leaves were still:

Through pathless ravines, where swift waters roll'd;
Up dark crag-ramparts, perilously steep,
Where eagles and a she-bear watch'd the fold;—
Facing the mountain breezes, clear and cold—
In shy, sweet silence, eloquent and deep.

Holding his charger by the bridle-rein,
He led her through the robber-chieftain's lands;
Led her, unchallenged by the baron's train,
E'en to the low-brow'd castle-gate again,
And there he humbly knelt to kiss her hands.

Brave lips, o'er tender palms bent down so low,
Silent and reverent, as it were to bless—
'Twas e'en a knightly love they did bestow,
Love true as steel and undefiled as snow;
No common courtesy, no light caress.

He rode away; and she to turret-lair
Sped, swift and trembling, like a hunted doe.
But wherefore, on the loopholed winding stair
Knelt she till morning, weeping, watching there?—
Because he was her brother's deadliest foe.

Because the golden dragon's blood had mixt
In all those mountain streams, had dyed the grass
Now trodden for her sake; because betwixt
Those two proud barons such a gulf was fixt
As never bridge of peace might overpass.

A bitter, passionate feud, that was begun
In ages long forgotten, and bequeath'd
With those rich baronies by sire to son—
A sacred charge, a great work never done,
A sharp and fiery weapon never sheath'd.

Yet, e'er a month slipped by, as summer slips
On noiseless wings, another kiss was laid,
Not on white palms or rosy finger-tips,
But softly on shut eyes and quivering lips;
And vows were sealèd in the forest glade.

The robber baron, who had hedged about
That fairest blossom of the sacred plant,
Saw he the insolent mailèd hand stretch'd out
To break down all his barriers, strong and stout?
Knew he aught of that gracious covenant?

His pride serenely slept. Nor did it wake
Till, in amaze, he saw his enemy stand
In his own castle, praying him to take
The pledge of peace for Lady Gertrude's sake—
Praying him humbly for the lady's hand.

Slowly the knitted brows grew fierce and black;
Slowly the eagle eyes began to shine.

“Sir knight,” he said, “I pray you get you back.
But one hour—and the Bears are on your track.
There's naught but fire and sword 'twixt mine and thine.”

And then the doors were barred on every side
Upon the innocent traitor, who had done
Such doubly-shameful despite to his pride.
Mocking, “I'll satisfy your heart,” he cried,
An' you will have a husband, pretty one!”

Yet did she send a message stealthily,
Spurred by the torture of this ominous threat.
“Thou wilt not suffer it?” she said. And he,
“Fear not. To-morrow will I come for thee,—
At eve to-morrow, when the sun has set.”

And on the morrow, when the autumn light
Of red and gold had faded into grey,
She heard his signal up the echoing height,
Like hoarse owl-whistle, quivering through the night;
And in the dark she softly slipped away.

Her faithful nurse, with trembling hands, untwined
The new-forged fetters and drew back the bars.
The hound look'd up into her face, and whined,
And scratch'd the door; he would not stay behind.
And so she went—watch'd only by the stars.

Adown the mountain passes, with wing'd feet
And bright, blank eyes—her hand fast clutch'd around
A ragged slip of myrtle, white and sweet;
The hound beside her, velvet-footed, fleet
And silent, with his muzzle to the ground.

The knight was waiting, with his dappled steed,
Hard by the black brink of the waveless pool.
In his strong, tender arms—now safe indeed—
She cross'd the valley, with the wild bird's speed,
Fanned by the whispering night-wind, clear and cool.

Away—away—far from the trysting-place—
Over the blood-stain'd border-lands at last!
One wandering hind alone beheld the race;
A sudden rush—a shadow on his face—
A glint of golden scales—and she was past.

She felt the shadow of a mighty wall,
And then the glow of torchlight, and again
The gloom of cloister'd stair and passage, fall
Upon her vacant eyes. She heard a call;
And, in the echoing mountains, its refrain.

Then all around her a great silence lay;
She knew not why, nor greatly seem'd to care,
Till, in low tones, she heard the baron say,
“Hast thou confess'd, my little one, to-day?”—
The while he weaved the myrtle in her hair.

She glanced up suddenly, in blank amaze;
And then remember'd. 'Twas an altar, hung
With silk and rich embroidery, met her gaze;
'Twas perfumed, waxen altar-tapers' blaze
On her chill'd face and troubled spirit flung.

A holy father, with his open book,
Stood by the threshold of the chapel door.
Slowly, with bated breath and hands that shook,
Soft-clasped together—drawn with but a look—
She went, and knelt down humbly on the floor.

The baron left her, lowly crouching there,
Her bright, starred tresses trailing on the stones;
And waited, kneeling on the altar-stair—
Holding his sword-hilt to his lips, in prayer—
The while she pleaded in her tremulous tones.

A warning voice upon the still air dwelt,
A long, low cry of mingled hope and dread;—
A pause—a solemn silence—and she felt
The sweet absolving whisper as she knelt,
And hands of blessing covering her head.

The knight arose in silence, with a brow
Haughty and pale; and, softly drawing nigh,—
Love, life, and death in the new “I and thou”—
He gave and took each solemn marriage vow,
With all his arm'd retainers standing by.

The soft light fell upon their faces—still,
And calm, and full of rest. None now to part
The golden link between them!—naught to chill
The blest assurance that the father's will
Laid hand in hand, and gather'd heart to heart.

And so 'twas done. Each finger now had worn
The rings that aye ring'd in the double life;
From each the pledge had been withdrawn in turn,
As one by one the hallow'd oaths were sworn;
And Lady Gertrude was the baron's wife.

He led her to her chamber, when the glow
Of dawn began to quicken earth and sky;
They watch'd the rosy wine-cup overflow
The pale, cool, silvery track upon the snow
Of Alpine crests, uplifted far and high.

They saw the mountain floodgates open'd wide,
The downward streaming of unfetter'd day;
In blessed stillness, standing side by side—
Stillness that told how they were satisfied,
Those hearts whereon the new-born glamour lay.

And then, down cloister'd aisle and sculptured stair,
Through open courts, all bathed in shining mist,
They pass'd together, knight and lady fair;
She with the matron's coif upon her hair,
Her golden hair by lip and finger kiss'd.

He throned her proudly in his castle hall,
High on the daïs above the festive board,
'Neath shields and pennons drooping from the wall;
And they below the salt rose, one and all,
To greet the bride of their puissant lord.

Loud were the shouts, and fair with smiling grace
The blue eyes of the lady baroness;
And bright and eager was the haughty face
Of her brave husband, towering in his place,
Yet aye low-stooping for a mute caress.

There came a sudden pause—a thunder-cloud,
Darkening the sunshine of the golden noon—
An ominous stillness in the armèd crowd,
While slowly stiffening lips, all stern and proud,
Shut in the kindly laughter—all too soon!

To arms! To arms!” A passionate crimson flush
Rose, sank, and blanched the fair face of the bride.
To arms!” The cry smote sharply on the hush,
And broke it;—all was one tumultuous rush—
The Bears have cross'd the border-land!” they cried.

But a few hours had Lady Gertrude dwelt
With her dear lord. Sad honours now were hers,
With white, hot hands she clasp'd his silver belt;
She held his dinted shield and sword; and knelt,
Like lowly squire, to don his golden spurs.

“Thou wilt not fight with him?—thou wilt forbear
For my sake?” So she pleaded, while the sun
Shone on her falling tears—each tear a prayer.
He whisper'd gravely, as he kissed her hair,
“I know not if I can, my little one.”

She held his hands, with infinite mute desire
To hold him back; then watch'd him to the field
With hungry, feverish eyes that could not tire,
Till sunny space absorb'd the fitful fire
Of the bright dragons on his crest and shield.

When he was gone—quite gone—she crept away,
Back to the castle chapel, still and dim;
And knelt where he had knelt but yesterday,
Low on the altar step, to watch and pray—
To pour her heart out for the love of him.

Her bower-maidens sat alone and spun
The while she pray'd, the terror-stricken wife.
The long hours slowly wanèd, one by one,
And evening came, and, with the setting sun,
The sudden darkness that eclipsed her life.

She listen'd, and she heard the sound at last,—
The ominous pause, the heavy, clanging tread;
She saw the strange, long shadow weirdly cast
Upon the floor, the red blood streaming fast,
The dear face grey and stiffen'd;—he was dead!

“Ay, dead, my lady baroness; and slain
By him you call your brother. Curses light
Upon his caitiff soul! Ah, 'tis in vain
To murmur thus,—he will not hear again—
He cannot heed your whisperings to-night.”

She lay down on her bridal couch—the stone
Whereon he lay in his eternal rest;
They, pitying, pass'd out, leaving her alone,
To kiss the rigid lips, and cry, and moan,
With her white face upon his bleeding breast.

* * * * *

'Twas night—wakeful, restless, troubled night,
Both wild and soft—fair;
With clouds fast flying through the domheight,
And shrieking winds, and silvery shining light,
And clear bells piercing the transparent air.

Down vale and fell a lonely figure stray'd,—
Now a dark shadow on the moonlit ground,
Now flickering white and ghostly in the shade
Of haunted glen and scented forest-glade—
A woman, watched and followed by a hound.

'Twas Lady Gertrude, widow'd and forlorn,
Returning to the wild birds' mountain nest;
Sent out with smiling insult and with scorn,
And creeping to the home where she was born,
To hide her sorrow, to lie down and rest.

She reach'd the gate and cross'd the castle-yard,
And stood upon the threshold, chill'd with fear.
The baron rose and faced her, breathing hard:
“Troopers,” he thunder'd, “let the doors be barred
And double-barred!—we'll have no traitors here.”

Such was her welcome. As she turn'd away,
Groping with sightless eyes and hands outspread,
The hound, unnoticed, slowly made his way
Along the hall, as if in track of prey,
With glistening teeth and stealthy velvet tread.

There was no clarion cry, none heard the sound
Of knightly challenge, till the champion rose,
Avenging. Lo! they saw upon the ground
The baron struggling with the savage hound,
And grim death grimly waiting for the close!

'Twas done. He lay there unassoilzied, dead,
Ere scarcely fell'd by the relentless paws.
And the fierce hound, with painful, limping tread,
Was following still where Lady Gertrude led,
His own red life-blood dripping from his jaws.

'Neath shadowy glades, with moonbeams interlaced,
Through valleys, at day—dawning, soft and dim,
Up mountain steeps at sunrise—uplands paced
By her dead lord in childhood—she retraced
The long miles stretching betwixt her and him.

She reach'd the castle, ere the torches' glare
Had wanèd in the brightness of the sky—
Another lord than hers was feasting there!
She shudder'd at the sounds that fill'd the air,
Of drunken laughter and loud revelry,

And softly up the cloister'd stairs she crept,
Back to the lonely chapel, where all sound
Of human life in solemn silence slept.
With weary heart and noiseless feet she stept
Beneath the doorway into hallow'd ground.

Low at the altar, wrapped in slumber sweet
And still and deep, her murder'd lord lay here;
With waxen tapers at his head and feet—
Forcing reluctant darkness to retreat—
And cross-embroider'd pall upon his bier.

The blood-hound blindly stumbled, and fell prone
Across the threshold. Something came and prest
His huge head downward, stiffening him to stone.
And Lady Gertrude, passing up alone,
Spread her white arms above the baron's breast.

The weapons which his lowly coffin bore—
His sword and spurs, his helm and shield and belt—
Like him, to rest from battle evermore,
Whose long-drawn shadows barred the chapel floor,—
She kiss'd them, for his dear sake, as she knelt.

She laid her cheek upon the velvet pall,
With one long, quivering sigh; and tried to creep
Where the soft shadow of the rood would fall,
'Mid light of sunrise and of tapers tall,
Upon them both, and there she fell asleep.

* * * * *

She woke no more. But where her track had been,
On that last night, became a haunted ground.
And when the wild wind blows upon the sheen
Of summer moonlight, there may still be seen
The phantom of a lady and a hound.

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The Cōforte of Louers

The prohemye.

The gentyll poetes/vnder cloudy fygures
Do touche a trouth/and clokeit subtylly
Harde is to cōstrue poetycall scryptures
They are so fayned/& made sētēcyously
For som do wryte of loue by fables pryuely
Some do endyte/vpon good moralyte
Of chyualrous actes/done in antyquyte
Whose fables and storyes ben pastymes pleasaunt
To lordes and ladyes/as is theyr lykynge
Dyuers to moralyte/ben oft attendaunt
And many delyte to rede of louynge
Youth loueth aduenture/pleasure and lykynge
Aege foloweth polycy/sadnesse and prudence
Thus they do dyffre/eche in experyence
I lytell or nought/experte in this scyence
Compyle suche bokes/to deuoyde ydlenes
Besechynge the reders/with all my delygence
Where as I offende/for to correct doubtles
Submyttynge me to theyr grete gentylnes
As none hystoryagraffe/nor poete laureate
But gladly wolde folowe/the makynge of Lydgate
Fyrst noble Gower/moralytees dyde endyte
And after hym Cauncers/grete bokes delectable
Lyke a good phylozophre/meruaylously dyde wryte
After them Lydgate/the monke commendable
Made many wonderfull bokes moche profytable
But syth the are deed/& theyr bodyes layde in chest
I pray to god to gyue theyr soules good rest

Finis prohemii.

Whan fayre was phebus/w&supere; his bemes bryght
Amyddes of gemyny/aloft the fyrmament
Without blacke cloudes/castynge his pured lyght
With sorowe opprest/and grete incombrement
Remembrynge well/my lady excellent
Saynge o fortune helpe me to preuayle
For thou knowest all my paynfull trauayle
I went than musynge/in a medowe grene
Myselfe alone/amonge the floures in dede
With god aboue/the futertens is sene
To god I sayd/thou mayst my mater spede
And me rewarde/accordynge to my mede
Thou knowest the trouthe/I am to the true
Whan that thou lyst/thou mayst them all subdue
Who dyde preserue the yonge edyppus
Whiche sholde haue be slayne by calculacyon
To deuoyde grete thynges/the story sheweth vs
That were to come/by true reuelacyon
Takynge after theyr hole operacyon
In this edyppus/accordynge to affecte
Theyr cursed calkynge/holly to abiecte
Who dyde preserue/Ionas and moyses
Who dyde preserue yet many other mo
As the byble maketh mencyon doubles
Who dyde kepe Charles frome his euyll fo
Who was he/that euer coude do so
But god alone/than in lykewyse maye he
Kepe me full sure/frome all inyquyte
Thus as I called to my remembraunce
Suche trewe examples/I tenderly dyde wepe
Remembrynge well/goddes hyghe ordynaūce
Syghynge full oft/with inwarde teres depe
Tyll at the last/I fell in to a slepe
And in this slepe/me thought I dyde repayre
My selfe alone/in to a garden fayre
This goodly gardyn/I dyde well beholde
Where I sawe a place/ryght gaye and gloryous
With golden turrettes/paynted many afolde
Lyke a place of pleasure moste solacyous
The wyndowes glased/with crystall precyous
The golden fanes/with wynde and melody
By dulcet sounde/and meruaylous armony
The knottes flagraunt/with aromatyke odoure
With goodly sprynges/of meruaylous mountaynes
I dyde than tast/the redolent lycoure
Moost clere and swete/of the goodly vaynes
Whiche dyde me ease/somwhat of my paynes
Tyll to me came/a lady of goodly age
Apareyled sadly/and demure of vysage
To me she sayd/me thynke ye are not well
Ye haue caught colde/and do lyue in care
Tell me your mynde/now shortly euerydeie
To layne the trouthe/I charge you to beware
I shall for you/a remedy prepare
Dyspeyre you not/for no thynge that is past
Tell me your mynde/and be nought agast
Al as madame/vnto her than I sayd
It is no wonder/of myne inwarde payne
Yf that my herte be meruayllously dysmayde
My trouthe and loue/therof is cause certayne
Dyuers yeres ago/I dyde in mynde retayne
A lady yonge/a lady fayre of syght
Good//wyse/and goodly/an holsome sterre of lyght
I durst not speke vnto her of my loue
Yet vnder coloure I dyuers bokes dyde make
Full pryuely/to come to my aboue
Thus many nyghtes/I watched for her sake
To her and to hers/my trouthe well to take
Without ony spotte/of ony maner yll
God knoweth all myn herte/my mynde & my wyll
The hygh dame nature/by her grete myght & power
Man/beest/and foule/in euery degre
Fro whens they came at euery maner houre
Dooth trye the trouthe/without duplycyte
For euery thynge must shewe the properte
Gentyll vngentyll/dame nature so well tryet
That all persones it openly espyeth
The lorde and knyght/delyteth for to here
Cronycles and storyes/of noble chyualry
The gentyll man gentylnes/for his passe tyme clere
The man of lawe/to here lawe truely
The yeman delyteth to talke of yomanry
The ploman his londe for to ere and sowe
Thus nature werketh/in hye degre and lowe
For yf there were one of the gentyll blode
Conuayde to yomanry for nourysshement
Dyscrecyon comen he sholde chaunge his mode
Though he knewe not/his parentes verament
Yet nature wolde werke/so by entendyment
That he sholde folowe/the condycyons doubtles
Of his true blode/by outwarde gentylnes
In all this worlde/ben but thynges twayne
As loue and hate/the trouth for to tell
And yf I sholde hate my lady certayne
Than worthy I were/to dye of deth cruell
Seynge all ladyes/that she doth excell
In beaute/grace/prudence and mekenes
What man on lyue/can more in one expres
Yf she with me sholde take dyspleasure
Whiche loueth her by honoures desyre
What sholde she do/with suceh a creature
That hateth her/by inwarde fraude and yre
I yet a louer/do not so atyre
My fayth and hope/I put in her grace
Releace to graunt me/by good tyme and space
Thretened with sorowe/of may paynes grete
Thre yeres ago my ryght hande I dyde bynde
Fro my browes for fere/y&supere; dropes doune dyde sweet
God knoweth all it was nothynge my mynde
Unto no persone/I durst my her to vntwynde
Yet the trouthe knowynge/the good gretest P
Maye me releace/of all my/p/p/p/thre
Now ryght fayre lady/so sadde and demure
My mynde ye knowe/in euery maner thynge
I trust for trouthe/ye wyll not me dyscure
Sythes I haue shewed you without lesynge
At your request/the cause of my mournynge
Whiche abyde in sorowe/in my remembraunce
Without good conforte/saufe of esperaunce
Fayre sone sayd she/sythens I knowe your thought
Your worde and dede/and here to be one
Dyspayre you not/for it auayleth nought
Ioye cometh after/whan the payne is gone
Conforte yourselfe/and muse not so alone
Doubt ye no thynge/but god wyll so agre
That at the last/ye shall your lady se
Be alwaye meke/let wysdome be your guyde
Aduenture for honoure/and put your selfe in preace
Clymbe not to fast/lest sodenly ye slyde
Lets god werke styll/he wyll your mynde encrece
Begynne no warre/be gladde to kepe the peace
Prepence no thynge/agaynst the honoure
Of ony lady/by fraudolent fauoure
Alas madame/vnto her than sayd I
Aboue .xx. woulues/dyde me touse and rent
Not longe agone/delynge moost shamefully
That by theyr tuggynge/my lyfe was nere spent
I dyde perceyue/somwhat of theyr entente
As the trouthe is knowen/vnto god aboue
My ladyes fader they dyde lytell loue
Seynge theyr falshode/and theyr subtylte
For fere of deth/where as I loued best
I dyde dysprayse/to knowe theyr cruelte
Somwhat to wysdome/accordynge to behest
Though that my body had but lytell rest
My herte was trewe vnto my ladyes blood
For all theyr dedes I thought no thynge but good
Some had wende the hous for to swepe
Nought was theyr besom/I holde it set on fyre
The inwarde wo in to my herte dyde crepe
To god aboue/I made my hole desyre
Saynge o good lorde of heuenly empyre
Let the mouut with all braunches swete
Entyerly growe/god gyue vs grace to mete
Soma had wened for to haue made an ende
Of my bokes/before he hadde begynnynge
But all vayne they dyde so comprehende
Whan they of them lacke vnderstandynge
Uaynfull was & is theyr mysse contryuynge
Who lyst the trouthe of them for to enfuse
For the reed and whyte they wryte full true
Well sayd this lady I haue perceueraunce
Of our bokes/whiche that ye endyte
So as ye saye is all the cyrcumstaunce
Unto the hyghe pleasure of the reed and the whyte
Which hath your trouth/and wyll you acquyte
Doubte ye no thynge/but at the last ye maye
Of your true mynde yet fynde a Ioyfull daye
Forsothe I sayd/dysdayne and straungenesse
I fere them sore/and fals reporte
I wolde they were/in warde all doutles
Lyke as I was/without conforte
Than wolde I thynke/my lady wolde resorte
Unto dame mercy/my payne to consyder
God knoweth all/I wolde we were togyder
Though in meane season/of grene grasse I fede
It wolde not greue me/yf she knewe my heuynesse
My trauayle is grete/I praye god be my spede
To resyste the myght/of myn enmyes subtylnesse
Whiche awayte to take/me by theyr doublenesse
My wysdome is lytel/yet god may graunt me grace
Them to defende/in euery maner of cace
Lerne this she sayd/yf that you can by wytte
Of foes make frendes/they wyll be to you sure
Yf that theyr frendshyp/be vnto yon knytte
It is oft stedfast/and wyll longe endure
Yf alwaye malyce/they wyll put in vre
No doubte it is/than god so hyght and stronge
Ful meruaylously/wyl soone reuenge theyr wronge
And now she sayd come on your waye with me
Unto a goodly toure whiche is solacyous
Beholde it yonder/full of felycyte
Quadrant it was/me thought full meruaylous
With golden turrettes/gaye and gloryous
Gargayled with greyhoūdes/and with many lyons
Made of fyne golde/with dyuers sondry dragons
The wyndowes byrall/without resplendysshaunt
The fayre yuery/coloured with grene
And all aboute there was dependaunt
Grete gargeyles of golde/full meruaylously besene
Neuer was made/a fayrer place I wene
The ryght excellent lady toke her intresse
Ryght so dyde I/by meruaylous swetnesse
Whan we came in/I dyde aboute beholde
The goodly temple/with pynacles vp sette
Wherin were ymages/of kynges all of golde
With dyuers scryptures/without ony lette
Aloft the roofe/were emeraudes full grette
Set in fyne golde/with amyable rudyes
Endented with dyamondes/and mayn turkyes
The wyndowes hystoried/with many noble kynges
The pyllers Iasper/dyuersed with asure
By pendaunt penacles/of many noble rynges
The pauement calcedony/beynge fayre and sure
The aras golde/with the story pure
Of the syche of thebes/with actes auenturous
Of ryght noble knyghees/hardy and chyualrous
Than sayd this lady/I must now go hence
Passe ye tyme here/accordynge to your lykynge
It maye fortune/your lady of excellence
Wyll passe her tyme here/soone by walkynge
Than maye she se/your dolefull mournynge
And fare ye well/I maye no lenger tary
Marke well my lesson/and from it do not vary
Whan she was gone/the temple all alonge
I went my selfe/with syghtes grete and feruent
Alas I sayd/with inwarde paynes stronge
My herte doth blede/now all to torne and rent
For lacke of conforte/my herte is almost spent
O meruelo&us; fortune/whiche hast ī loue me brought
Where is my conforte/that I so longe haue sought
O wonderfull loue/whiche fell vnto my lotte
O loue ryght clene/without ony thought vntrue
Syth thy fyrst louynge/not blemyssed with spotte
But euermore/the falseshede to extue
O dolorous payne/whiche doste renue
O pyteous herte/where is the helthe and boote
Of thy lady/that perst the at the roote
What thynge is loue/that causeth suche turment
From whens cometh it/me thynke it is good questyō
Yf it be nature/from nature it is sent
Loue maye come of kynde by true affeccyon
Loue may appetyte/by natururall eleccyon
Than must loue nedes be/I perceyue it in mynde
A thynge fyrst gyuen/by the god of kynde
Alas o nature/why mayst not thou truely
Cause my lady loue/as thou hast me constrayned
Hath she power to domyne the vtterly
Why mayst not thou/cause her be somwhat payned
With natures moeuynge/for loue is not fayned
Alas for sorowe/why madest thou her so fayre
Without to loue/that she lyst soone repayre
Two thynges me conforte/euer in pryncypall
The fyrst be bokes/made in antyquyte
By Gower and Chauncers/poetes rethorycall
And Lydgate eke/by good auctoryte
Makynge mencyon/of the felycyte
Of my lady and me/by dame fortunes chaunce
To mete togyders/by wonderull ordynaunce
The seconde is/where fortune dooth me brynge
In many placys/I se by prophecy
As in the storyes/of the olde buyldynge
Letters for my lady/depeynted wonderly
And letters for me/besyde her meruayllously
Agreynge well/vnto my bokes all
In dyuers placys/I se it in generall
O loue moost dere/o loue nere to my harte
O gentyll floure/I wolde you knewe my wo
How that your beaute/perst me with the darte
With your vertue/and your mekenes also
Sythens ye so dyde/it is ryght longe ago
My herte doth se you/it is for you bebledde
Myne eyen with teeres/ben often made full redde
Where are ye now/the floure of Ioye and grace
Whiche myght me conforte/in this inwarde sorowe
Myne excellent lady/it is a ryght pyteous case
Good be my guyde/aud saynt George vnto borowe
O clere Aurora/the sterre of the morowe
Whiche many yeres/with thy bemes mery
Hath me awaked/to se thyne emyspery
Thus as I mourned/I sawe than appere
Thre goodly myrours dependaunt on the wall
Set in fyne golde bordred with stones clere
The glasses pure/they were of crystall
Made longe ago to be memoryall
And vnder the fyrst glasse ryght fayre wryten was
Beholde thy selfe/and thy fautes or thou passe
By a sylken threde/small as ony heere
Ouer I sawe hange/a swerde full ponderous
Without a scauberde/full sharpe for to fere
The poynt dounwarde/ryght harde and asperous
All this I sawe/with hert full dolorous
Yet at auenture/to se the mystery
In the myroure/I loked than full sodenly
In this glasse I sawe/how I had ledde my lyfe
Sythens the tyme of my dyscrecyon
As vnto wyldnesse/alwaye affyrmatyfe
Folowynge the pleasure/of wylfull amonycyon
Not vnto vertue, hauynge intencyon
Ihesu sayd I/thou hast me well preserued
From this swerdes fall/whiche I haue oft deserued
O ye estates/aloft on fortunes whele
Remembre this swerde/whiche ouer you dependeth
Beware the fall/before that ye it fele
Se your one euyll/se what vengeaunce ensueth
Correcte none other/whan that your fautes renueth
Calke not not goddes power/bryef not y&supere; tens future
Beholde this glasse/se how he may endure
Many one wanteth the nature sens to brefe
By calculacyon goddes power to withstande
Bathynge theyr swerdes/in blode by myschefe
Tyll at the last as I do vnderstande
This swerde doth fal by the myght of goddes hande
Upon them all/whiche wolde his power abate
Than they repent but than it is to late
This goodly myrour/I ryght well behelde
Remembrynge well/my dedes done in tymes past
I toke forwytte/than for to be my shelde
By grace well armed/not to be agast
Thus as I stode/I dyde se at the last
The seconde myrour/as bryght as phebus
Set rounde about/with stones precyous
Ouer whiche dyde hāge/a floure of golde ryght fyne
Wherin was set/an emeraude full bryght
Ryght large and grete/whiche wōderfull dyde shyne
That me thought it was/grete conforte to my syght
Bordred dyamondes/castybarge a meruaylous; lyght
This floure dyde hange/by a ryght subtyll gynne
With a chayne of yron/and many a pryue pynne
Besyde whiche there was/a table of golde
With a goodly scrypture/enameled of grene
The sentence wherof/I dyde well beholde
The whiche sayd thus/it is openly sene
That many a one/full pryuely dooth wene
To blynde an other/by crafte and subtylnes
That ofte blyndeth hym/for all his doublenes
In this myrour whiche is here besyde
Thou shalt well lerne/thy selfe for to knowe
Passe forth no ferder/but loke and abyde
Se what shall come/lest that thou ouer throwe
A sodayne rysynge dooth oft fall alowe
Without the grounde/beryghe sure and perfyte
Beholde well this glasse/& take thy respyte
Whan thou hast so done/to this floure resorte
Laboure to gete it/from this harde yren chayne
Unto the gynnes/vnto thy grete conforte
Yf that thou canst/and take it for thy payne
To be thy helpe/in thy Journaye certayne
Lo here the vertues vnder wryten be
Of this ryall floure in euery degre
This ryche emeraude/who so dooth it bere
From his fyrst werynge/his syght shal not mynysshe
Payne of the heed he nedeth not to fere
By dynt of swerde/he shall neuer perysshe
Ne no thynge begyn/but he shall well fynysshe
Yf it be ryghtfull aftyr a true entent
Without resystence of grete impedyment
Of all nygromancy/and fals enchauntement
Agaynst hym wrought/he shall knowe the effecte
They can not blynde hym by cursed sentement
But he theyr werkes may ryght soone abiecte
No maner poyson he nedeth to susspecte
Neyther in mete not yet in ale ne wyne
Yf it beset well besyde a serpentyne
Yf he vntrue be vnto his gentyll lady
It wyll breke asondre/or crase than doubtlesse
It kepeth close/neuet the auoutry
This gentyll emeraude/this stone of rychesse
Hath many mo vertues/whiche I do not expresse
As saynt Iohan euangelyst doeth shewe openly
Who of his makynge lyst se the lapydary
Whan I had aduerted/in my remembraunce
All the maters/vnto the glasse I wente
Beholdynge it/by a longe cyrcumstaunce
Where as I dyde perceyue well verament
How preuy malyce/his messengers had sent
With subtyll engynes/to lye in a wayte
Yf that they coude take me with a bayte
I sawe there trappes/I sawe theyr gynnes all
I thanked god than/the swete holy goost
Whiche brought me hyder so well in specyall
Without whiche myrour/I had ben but loost
In god aboue/the lorde of myghtes moost
I put my trust/for to withstande theyr euyll
Whiche dayly wrought/by the myght of the deuyll
I sawe theyr maysters blacke and tydyous
Made by the craft of many a nacyon
For to dystroye me/with strokes peryllous
To lette my Iournaye/as I make relacyon
Peryllous was the waye/and the cytuacyon
Full gladde was I of the vertu of this glasse
Whiche shewed me/what daungers I sholde passe
O all ye estates/of the hygh renowne
Beware these gynnes/beware theyr subtylte
The deuyll is grete/and redy to cast downe
By calculacyon/of the cursed cruelte
Of the subtyll beestes/full of inyquyte
In the olde tyme what snares were there sette
By fals calkynge/to dystroye lordes grete
Than after this to the yron gynne
I wente anone my wyte for to proue
By lytell and lytell/to vndo euery pynne
Thus in and out/I dyde the chayne ofte moue
Yet coude I not come/vnto myne aboue
Tyll at the last/I dyde the crafte espy
Undoynge the pynnes/& chayne full meruaylously
Full gladde was I than/whan I had this floure
I kyst it oft/I behelde the coloure grene
It swaged ryght well/myn inwarde doloure
Myn eyes conforted/with the bryghtnes I wene
This ryall floure/this emeraude so shene
Whan I had goten it by my prudence
Ryght gladde I was/of fortunes premynence
O fortune sayd I/thou arte ryght fauorable
For many a one/hath ben by symylytude
To wynne this floure/full gretely tendable
But they the subtylnes/myght nothynge exclude
Sythen by wysdome/I dyde this fraude conclude
This floure/I sette nere my harte
For perfyte loue/of my fayre ladyes darte
So this accomplysshed/than incontynent
To the thyrde myrour I went dyrectly
Beholdynge aboute by good auysement
Seynge an ymage madefull wonderly
Of the holy goost with flambes ardauntly
Under whiche I sawe with letters fayre and pure
In golde well grauen this meruaylous scrypture
Frome the fader and the sone my power procedynge
And of my selfe I god do ryght ofte inspyre
Dyuers creatures with spyrytuall knowynge
Inuysyble by dyuyne flambynge fyre
The eyes I entre not it is not my desyre
I am not coloured of the terrestryall grounde
Nor entre the eres for I do not sounde
Nor by the nose for I am not myxte
With ony maner of the ayry influence
Nor by the mouthe for I am not fyxte
For to be swalowed by erthly experyence
Nor yet by felynge or touchynge exystence
My power dyuyne can not be palpable
For I myselfe am no thynge manyable
Yet vysyble I may be by good apparaunce
As in the lykenesse of a doue vnto chryste Ihesu
At his baptysme I dyde it with good countenaunce
To shewe our godhed to be hygh and true
And at his transfyguracyon our power to ensue
In a fayre cloude with clere rayes radyaunt
Ouer hym that I was well apparaunt
Also truely yet at the feest of pentycoste
To the sones moder and the apostelles all
In tonges of fyre as god of myghtes moost
I dyde appere shewynge my power spyrytuall
Enflambynge theyr hertes by vertues supernall
Whiche after that by languages well
In euery regyon coude pronounce the gospell
And where I lyst by power dyuyne
I do enspyre oft causynge grete prophecy
Whiche is mysconstrued whan some do enclyne
Thynkynge by theyr wytte to perceyue it lyghtly
Or elles calke with deuylles the trouth to sertyfy
Whiche contrary be to all true saynge
For deuylles be subtyll and alwaye lyenge
Whan I had aduerted with my dylygence
All the scrypture I sawe me besyde
Hāge a fayre swerde & shelde of meruailous excellēce
Whiche to beholde I dyde than abyde
To blase the armes I dyde well prouyde
The felde was syluer/and in it a medowe grene
With an olyue trefull meruaylously besene
Two lyons of asure vpon euery syde
Couchande were truely besyde this olyue tree
A hande of stele wherin was wryten pryde
Dyde holde this ryall swerde in certaynte
A scrypture there was whiche sayd by subtylte
Of a grete lady hondred yeres ago
In the hande of stele this swerde was closed so
No maner persone/may withstande this swerde
But one persone/chosen by god in dede
Of this ladyes kynred/not to be aferde
To touche this hande/his mater for to spede
And to vndo it/and take it for his mede
But yf that he/be not of the lygnage
The hande wyll sle hym/after olde vsage
This ryall swerde/that called is preprudence
Who can it gette/it hath these vertues thre
Fyrst to wynne ryght/without longe resystence
Secondly encreaseth/all trouth and amyte
Thyrdly of the berer through duplycyte
Be pryuely fals/to the ordre of chyualry
The swerdes crosse wyll crase/and shewe it openly
This shelde also/who so dooth it bere
Whiche of olde tyme/was called perceueraunce
Hath thre vertues/fyrst he nedeth not fere
Ony grete blodeshede/by wronge incombraunce
Secondly/it wolde make good apparaunce
By hete vnto hym/to gyue hym warnynge
To be redy/agayst his enmyes comynge
The thyrde is this/yf this calenge be ryghtfull
Neuer no swerde/shall through his harneys perce
Nor make hym blody/with woundes rufull
For he there steength/may ryghtfully reuerce
Yet moreouer/as I do well reherce
This ryall shelde/in what place it be borne
Shall soone be wonne/and shall not be forlorne
These thynges sene/to the thyrde myroure clere
I went anone/and in it loked ryght ofte
Where in my fyght/dyde wonderly appere
The fyrmament/with the sonne all alofte
The wynde not grete/but blowynge fayre and softe
And besyde the sonne/I sawe a meruaylous sterre
With beames twayne/the whiche were cast aferre
The one turnynge towarde the sterre agayne
The other stretched ryght towarde Phebus
To beholde this sterre/I was somwhat fayne
But than I mused with herte full dolorous
Whyder it sygnyfyed thynges good or peryllous
Thus longe I studyed/tyll at the last I thought
What it sholde meane/as in my herte I sought
This sterre it sygnyfyeth the resynge of a knyght
The bowynge beame agayne so tournynge
Betokened rattonnes of them whiche by myght
Wolde hym resyst by theyr wronge resystynge
The beame towarde Phebus clerely shynynge
Betokened many meruaylous fyres grete
On them to lyght that wolde his purpose lete
In the fyre clerest of euery element
God hath appered vnto many a one
Inspyrynge them/with grete wytte refulgent
Who lyst to rede many dayes agone
Many one wryteth trouthe/yet cōforte hath he none
Wherfore I fere me/lyke a swarme of bees
Wylde fyre wyll lyght amonge a thousande pees

Sepe expugnauerunt me a inuentute mea:etenim non potuerunt michi.
As the cantycles maketh good mencyon
They haue oft expugned me/syth my yonge age
Yet coude they haue me/in theyr domynyon
Though many a one/vnhappely do rage
They shall haue sorowe that shytte me in a cage
In a grte dyspyte of the holy goost
He maye them brenne/theyr calkynge is but loost

Supra dorsum meū fabricauerūt peccatores: prolongauersit iniquitatē suā.
Upon my backe synners hath fabrysed
They haue prolonged theyr grete inyquyte
From daye to daye it is not mynysshed
Wherfore for vengeaunce by grete extremyte
It cryeth aboue/now vnto the deyte
Whiche that his mynysters haue suffred so longe
To lyue in synne and euyll wayes wronge
Whan I had perceyued euery maner thynge
Of this ryall myrour/accordynge to effecte
Remembrynge the verses/of the olde saynge
Whiche in my mynde I dyde well coniecte
Than to the swerde/I thought to haue respecte
Ryght so I went/than at all auenture
Unto the hande/that helde the swerde so sure
I felte the hande/of the stell so fyne
Me thought it quaked/the fyngers gan to stretche
I thought by that/I came than of the lyne
Of the grete lady/that fyrst the swerde dyde fetche
The swerdes pomell/I began to ketche
The hande swerued/but yet neuer the lesse
I helde them bothe/by excellent prowes
And at the last/I felte the hande departe
The swerde I toke/with all my besynesse
So I subdued/all the magykes arte
And founde the scauberde/of meruaylous rychesse
After that I toke the shelde doune doubtlesse
Kyssynge the swerde/and the shelde ofte I wys
Thankynge god/the whiche was cause of this
Gladde was I than/of my ryall floure
Of my swerde and shelde/I reioyced also
It pacyfyed well/myn inwarde doloure
But fro my ladyes beaute/my mynde myght not go
I loued her surely/for I loued no mo
Thus my fayre floure/and my swerde and shelde
With eyen ryght meke/full often I behelde
Than sayd I (well) this is an happy chaunce
I trust now shortly/my lady for to se
O fortune sayd I/whiche brought me on the daūce
Fyrst to beholde her ryght excellent beaute
And so by chaunce/hast hyder conueyde me
Getynge me also/my floure my shelde and swerde
I nought mystrust the/why sholde I be aferde
O ryght fayre lady/as the bryght daye sterre
Shyneth before the rysynge of the sonne
Castynge her beames/all aboute aferre
Exylynge grete wyndes/and the mystes donne
So ryght fayre lady/where as thou doost wonne
Thy beautefull bryghtnes/thy vertue and thy grace
Dooth clere Illumyne/all thy boure and place
The gentyll heren is plonged in dystresse
Dooth walowe and tomble in somers nyght
Replete with wo/and mortall heuynesse
Tyll that aurora/with her beames bryght
Aboute the fyrmament/castynge her pured lyght
Ageynst the rysynge/of refulgent tytan
Whan that declyneth/the fayre dame dyan
Than dooth the louer/out of this bedde aryse
With wofull mynde/beholdynge than the ayre
Alas he sayth/what nedeth to deuyse
Ony suche pastyme/here for to repayre
Where is my conforte/where is my lady fayre
Where is my Ioye/where is now all my boote
Where is she nowe/that persed my herte rote
This maye I saye/vnto my owne dere loue
My goodly lady/fayrest and moost swete
In all my bokes/fayre fortune doth moue
For a place of grace/where that we sholde mete
Also my bokes full pryuely you grete
The effectes therof/dooth well dayly ensue
By meruelous thynges/to proue them to be true
The more my payne/the more my loue encreaseth
The more my Ieopardy/the truer is my harte
The more I suffre/the lesse the fyre releasheth
The more I complayne the more is my smarte
The more I se her/the sharper is the darte
The more I wryte/the more my teeres dystyll
The more I loue/the hotter is my wyll
O moost fayre lady/yonge/good/and vertuous
I knewe full well/neuer your countenaunce
Shewed me ony token/to make me amerous
But what for that/your prudent gouernaunce
Hath enrached my herte/for to gyue attendaunce
Your excellent beaute/you coude no thynge lette
To cause my herte vpon you to be sette
My ryght fayre lady/yf at the chesse I drawe
My selfe I knowe not/as a cheke frome a mate
But god aboue the whiche sholde haue in awe
By drede truely euery true estate
He maye take vengeaunce/though he tary late
He knoweth my mynde/he knoweth my remedy
He maye reuenge me/he knoweth my Ieoperdy
O thou fayre fortune/torne not fro me thy face
Remembre my sorowe/for my goodly lady
My tendre herte/she dooth full oft enbrace
And as of that it is no wonder why
For vpon her is all my desteny
Submyttynge me/vnto her gracyous wyll
Me for to saue or sodaynly to spyll
O ryght fayre lady of grene flourynge age
You can not do but as your frendes agre
Your wyte is grete/you mekenes/dooth not swage
Exyle dysdayne/and be ruled by pety
The frenshe man sayth/that shall be shall be
Yf that I dye louer was neuer none
Deyed in this worlde/for a fayrer persone
Your beaute causeth all my amyte
Why sholde your beaute/to my dethe condyscende
Your vertue and mekenes/dyde so arest me
Why sholde ye than to dame dysdayne intende
Your prudence your goodnes/dooth mercy extende
Why sholde ye than enclyne to cruelte
Your grace I trust wyll non extremyte
A dere herte I maye complayne ryght longe
You here me not/nor se me not arayed
Nor causes my paynes for to be stronge
It was myn eyes/that made me fyrst dysmayde
With stroke of loue/that coude not me delaye
My ryght fayre lady/my herte is colde and faynt
Wolde now to god/that you knewe my complaynte
Thus as I mourned I herde a lady speke
I loked asyde I sawe my lady gracyous
My herte than fared/as it sholde breke
For perfyte Ioye whiche was solacyous
Before her grace/ryght swete and precyous
I kneled doune/saynge with all mekenesse
Please it your grace/& excellent noblenes
No dyspleasure to take for my beynge here
For fortune me brought/to this place ryall
Where I haue wonne this floure so vertuous & dere
This swerde and shelde/also not peregall
Towadre hym aduenture to be tryumphall
And now by fortunes desteny and fate
Do here my duety vnto your hygh estate
Ihesu sayd she than/who hadde wende to fynde
Your selfe walkynge/in this place all alone
Full lytell thought I/ye were not in my mynde
What is the cause/that ye make suche mone
I thynke some thynge/be from you past and gone
But I wonder/how that ye dyde attayne
This floure/this swerde/the shelde also certayne
For by a lady in the antyquyte
They were made to a meruaylous entente
That none sholde get them/but by auctoryte
Whiche onely by fortune/sholde hyder be sent
Full many knyghtes by entendement
Hath them aduentred/to haue them in dede
But all was vayne/for they myght neuer spede
Wherfore surely/ye are moche fortunate
Them for to wynne by your aduenture
But it was no thynge to you ordynate
And you dyde well/to put your selfe in vre
To proue the Ieoperdy/whiche hath made you sure
Leue all your mournynge/for there is no wyght
Hath greter cause/for to be gladde and lyght
I behelde well her demure countenaunce
Unto her swete wordes/gyuynge good audyence
And than I marked in my remembraunce
Her pleasaunt apparayle/with all my dylygence
Whiche was full ryche of meruaylous excellence
Fyrst alofte her forheed/full properly was dressed
Under her orellettes/her golden heere well tressed
About her necke whyte as ony lyly
A prety chayne of the fynest golde
Some lynkes with grene enameled truely
And some were blacke/the whiche I dyde beholde
The vaynes blewe/in her fayre necke well tolde
With her swete vysage tydynges to my herte
That sodynly my thoughtes were asterte
Her gowne was golde/of the clothe of tyssewe
With armyns poudred/and wyde sleues pendaunt
Her kyrtell grene of the fyne satyn newe
To bere her longe trayne/was well attendaunt
Gentyll dame dylygence/neuer varyaunt
Than as touchynge her noble stature
I thynke there can be/no goodlyer creature
As of her aege/so tendre and grene
Fayre/gracyous/prudent/and louynge humylyte
Her vertue shyneth/beynge bryght and shene
In her is nether pryde ne sybtylte
Her gentyll herte/enclyneth to bounte
Thus beaute/godlynesse/vertue/grace/and wytte
With bounte and mekenesse/in this lady is knytte

Thus whan my eyes hadde beholde her wele
Madame I sayd how may I now be gladde
But sygh and sorowe with herte euery dele
Longe haue I loued/and lytell conforte hadde
Wherfore no wonder though that I be sadde
Your tendre age/full lytell knoweth ywys
To loue vnloued/what wofull payne it is

Thoghe that I be yonge/yet I haue perceueraūce
That ther is no lady/yf that she gentyll be
But ye haue with her ony acquayntaunce
And after cast/to her your amyte
Grounded on honoure/without duplycyte
I wolde thynke in mynde/she wolde condescende
To graunt your fauoure/yf ye none yll intende

A fayre lady I haue vnto her spoken
That I loue best/and she dooth not it knowe
Though vnto her/I haue my mynde broken
Her beuaet clere/dooth my herte ouerthrowe
Whan I do se her/my herte booth sobbe I trowe
Wherfore fayre lady/all dysparate of contorte
I speke vnknowen/I must to wo resorte

Me thynke ye speke/now vnder parable
Do ye se her here/whiche is cause of your grefe
Yf ye so dyde/than sholde I be able
As in this cause/te be to your relefe
Ryght lothe I were to se your myschefe
For ye knowe well/what case that I am yn
Peryllous it wolde be/or that ye coude me wyne

Madame sayd I/thoughe myn eyes se her not
Made dymme w&supert; wepynde/& with grete wo togyder
Yet dooth myn herte/at this tyme I wote
Her excellent beaute/ryght inwardly concyder
Good fortune I trust/hach now brought me hyder
To se your mekenes/whiche doth her repayre
Whose swete conforte/dooth kepe me fro dyspayre

Of late I sawe aboke of your makynge
Called the pastyme of pleasure/whiche is wōdrous
For I thynge and you had not ben in louynge
Ye coude neuer haue made it so sentencyous
I redde there all your passage daungerous
Wherfore I wene for the fayre ladyes sake
That ye dyd loue/ye dyde that boke so make

Forsothe madame/I dyde compyle that boke
As the holy goost/I call vnto wytnes
But ygnorauntly/who so lyst to loke
Many meruelous thynges in it/I do expresse
My lyue and loue/to enserche well doublesse
Many a one doth wryte/I knowe not what in dede
Yet the effecte dooth folowe/the trouthe for to spede

I graunt you well/all that whiche you saye
But tell me who it is/that ye loue so sure
I promyse you that I wyll not bewraye
Her name truely to ony creature
Pyte it is/you sholde suche wo endure
I do perceyue/she is not ryght ferre hence
Whiche that ye loue/wihtouten neclygence

Surely madame/syth it pleaseth your hyghnesse
And your honour to speke so nobly
It is your grace/that hath the intresse
In my true herte/with loue so feruently
Ryght longe ago/your beaute sodanly
Entred my mynde/and hath not syth dekayde
With feruent loue/moost wofully arayde

And is it I/that is cause of your loue
Yf it so be I can not helpe your payne
It sholde be harde/to gete to your aboue
Me for to loue/I dyde not you constrayne
Ye knowe what I am/I knowe not you certayne
I am as past your loue to specyfy
Why wyll ye loue where is no remedy

A madame you are cause of my languysshe
Ye maye me helpe/yf that it to you please
To haue my purpose/my herte dooth not menysshe
Thoughe I was seke/ye knewe not my dysease
I am not hole/your mercy maye me ease
To proue what I am/the holy goost werke styll
My lyfe and deth/I yelde nowe to your wyll

Fortune me thynke/is meruaylous fauorable
To you by getynge/of this ryall floure
Hauynge this swerde/and shelde so profytable
In mortall daungers/to be your socoure
But as touchynge your loue and fauoure
I can not graunt/neyther fyrst ne last
Ye knowe what I am/ye knowe my loue is past

Madame the floure/the swerde and shelde also
Whiche fortune gate me/are not halfe so dere
As your persone the cause of my wo
Whose grace and beaute/shyneth so ryght clere
That in my herte your beaute doth appere
Nothynge is past/but that fortunes pleasure
May call it agayne/in the tyme futrure

I denye not but that your dedes do shewe
By meruaylous prowes/truely your gentylnesse
To make you a carter/there were not afewe
But tho by crafte/whiche thought you to oppresse
To accombre them selfe applye the besynesse
Yet thynke not you/so soone to se a cradle
I graunt you loue/whan ye were golden sadle

Madame truely/it is oft dayly sene
Many a one dooth trust/his fortune to take
From an other man/to make hym blynde I wene
Whiche blyndeth hym/and dooth his pompe aslake
Often some hye/do fall alowe and quake
Ryght so maye they/whiche dyde fyrst prepence
My wo and payne for all theyr yll scyence

To loue me so/whiche knoweth my persone
And my frendes eke/me thynke ye are not wyse
As now of me conforte haue ye none
Wherfore this answere/maye to you suffyse
I can not do/but as my frendes deuyse
I can no thynge do/but as they accorde
They haue me promest/to a myghty lorde

Madame in this worlde ben but thynges twayne
As loue and hate/ye knowe your selfe the trouthe
Yf I sholde hate you/deth I were worthy playne
Than had you cause/with me to be wrothe
To deserue dyspleasure/my herte wolde be lothe
Wherfore fayre lady/I yelde at this hower
To your mekenes/my herte my loue and power

Thynke you past all chyldy ygnoraunce
That gladde I am/yf prudence be your guyde
Grace cometh often after gouernaunce
Beware of foly/beware of inwarde pryde
Clymbe not to fast/but yet fortune abyde
For your loue I thanke you/yf trouthe haue it fyxte
As with yll thought/neuer for to be myxte

Surely my mynde/nor yet my purpose
In ony cause by foly dyde vary
Neuer doynge thynke open ne close
That to your honour sholde be contrary
As yet for grace I am content to tary
For myn enmyes fraude and subtylnes
Whiche pryuely begyne theyr owne vnhapynesse

Now of trouthe/I do vnto you tell
The thynge y&supere; to your enmyes is moost dyspleasure
Is for to gouerne you by wysdome ryght well
That causeth enuy in theyr hertes to endure
But be ye pacyent and ye shall be sure
Suche thynges as they ordayne vnto your gref
Wyll lyght on them fo theyr owne myschefe

Surely I thynke/I suffred well the phyppe
The nette also dydde teche me on the waye
But me to bere I trowe they lost a lyppe
For the lyfte hande extendyd my Iournaye
And not to call me for my sporte and playe
Wherfore by foly yf that they do synne
The holy goost maye well the batayle wynne

Yf fortune wolde/for the payne ye haue taken
I wolde graūt you loue/but it may noth&ybar;ge al
My loue is past/it can not be forsaken
Therfore I praye you leue your trauayle
Full lothe I were/your deth to bewayle
There is no nette/nor no tempted snare
But ye them knowe/wherfore ye maye beware

The snares and nettes/set in sondrye maner
Doone in tyme past/made many abyrde a dawe
The tempted gynnes/were sette so cyrculer
But euermore it is an olde sayd sawe
Examples past dooth theche one to withdrawe
Frome all suche perylles/wherfore than maye I
By grace of god/beware full parfytly

Ye saye the trouthe/and I do not submytte
My wyll and thought to the lady Uenus
As she is goddesse/and doth true loue knytte
Ryght so to determyne/the mater betwene vs
With assent of fortune/so good gracyous
Besechynge you now for to holde you styll
For these two ladyes/maye your mynde fulfyll

My ryght dere lady/I do therto consente
Swete are your wordes they confort my thought
Of Uenus and fortune/I abyde the Iugement
But ryght dere lady/whome I longe haue sought
Forgete me not/remembre loue dere bought
Of my herte/I wolde ye knewe the preuyte
Than as I thynke ye wolde remembre me
That came ladyes [illeg.]
The our talkynge/y&supere; tyme dyde surrendre
Dame/ye do well here repayre
Ly temple/for to take the ayre
With that sodaynly/I truely awoke
Takynge pen and ynke to make this lytell boke
Go lytell treaty se submyte the humbly
To euery lady/excusynge thy neclygence
Besechynge them/to remembre truely
How thou doost purpose to do thy dylygence
To make suche bokes by true experyence
From daye to daye theyr pastyme to attende
Rather to dye/thon thau wolde them offend.

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The Example of Vertu : Cantos VIII.-XIV.

Capitalum VIII.

Dame Sapyence taryed a lytell whyle
Behynd the other saynge to Dyscrecyon
And began on her to laugh and smyle
Axynge her how I stode in condycyon
Well she sayd in good perfeccyon
But best it is that he maryed be
For to eschewe all yll censualyte
I knowe a lady of meruelous beaute
Spronge out of hyghe and noble lynage
Replete with vertue and full of bounte
Whiche vnto youth were a good maryage
For she is comen of royall apparage
But herde it wyll be to gete her loue
Without youth frayltye do sore reproue
I kneled downe than vpon my kne
Afore dame Sapyence with humble chere
Besechynge her of me to haue pyte
And also Dyscrecyon her syster dere
Than dame Sapyence came me nere
Saynge youth wyll ye haue a wyfe
And her to loue durynge her lyfe
Ye madame that wolde I fayne
Yf that she be both fayre and bryght
I wyll her loue euer more certayne
And pleas her alway with all my myght
Of suche a persone wolde I haue a syght
With all my herte now at this houre
Wolde to god I had so fayre a floure
Than sayd dyscrecyon there is a kynge
Dwellynge fer hens in a fayre castell
Of whome I oft haue herd grete talkynge
Whiche hath a doughter as I you tell
I trowe that youth wyll lyke her well
She is both good eke fayre and pure
As I report me vnto dame Nature
But yf that youth sholde her go seke
Ye must syster than hym well indue
With your grete power so good and meke
That he all frayltye may eschue
For by the way it wyll oft pursue
On hym by flatery and grete temptacyon
That shall brynge hym in tribulacyon
As for that sayd she he shall not care
For he shall theym sone ouercome
And of theyr flatery ryght well beware
For I to hym shall gyue grete wysedome
Theyr dedes to withstande & make theym dōme
Wherfore dere syster as I you pray
Unto her lede hym now on the way
Loke that ye send me in his necessyte
By dame swyftnes full sone a letter
By whiche that I may knowe the certaynte
That I may come to ayde hym beter
So that fraylte to hym be no freter
And though I be not alway vysyble
With hym my power he hath inuyncyble
Than sayd dame Sapyence to dyscrecyon
Fare well dere syster I may not tary
Loke ye of youth haue the tuycyon
That he fall not into vaynglory
And that ye puruey for hym shortly
That he may wedde the fayre dame clennesse
Whiche for her loue haue ben in duresse
With that dame Sapyence downe went
Into her place that was the doctrynall
Of famous clerkes in connynge splendent
A myrrour of lernyng that was dyuynall
With all the craftes artyfycyall
Byfore her dame Fortune went to her mancyon
And eke dame hardynes to her habytacyon

Capitulum nonum

Forth than went dyscrecyon and I
Out of the castell into a grene
Where byrdys sange by grete melody
There daunst also the fayre quene
Besyde a ryuer named Ephesene
Ouer whiche we wente to the other syde
That was a medowe both longe and wyde
Longe there we wandred tyll at the last
We came vnto a ryght grete wyldernes
By that tyme Phebus was ouer past
Wherfore we walked in grete derkenes
The whiche to me was a grete heuynes
For Lucyna eke dyd her shrowde
Under a blacke and mysty clowde
For she was horned and no thynge cleere
And entred into the sygne of caprycorne
Ryght ferre from phebus fulgent speere
And not ayenst hym the crowne had worne
I went vp and downe tyll on the morne
That phebus his golden reyes dyd sprede
Than dyscrecyon ferther forth me lede
Amonge thornes sharpe & bestes wylde
There was the lyon the wolf & the bere
But I coude mete nother man ne chylde
But many serpentes that dyde me fere
And by a swete smelle I knewe a pantere
So forth I went by longe contynuaunce
Tyll that I sawe an herber of pleasaunce
To whiche I toke anone my waye
Where that I sawe a lady excellent
Rydynge on a goote in fresshe arraye
Ryght yonge of age & lusty of entent
Prayenge me to her for to assent
As to fulfyll the flesshly pleasure
Whiche she desyred me out of mesure
Nay sayd dyscrecyon that may not be
No sayd I in no maner of wyse
To her request I wyll now agree
But euermore here foule lust despyse
For I my selfe do now aduyse
To kepe me chast that I may mary
Fayre dame Clennes that noble lady

So forth I went walkynge my iournay
Metynge a lady olde and amyable
Syttynge in a castell both fressh and gay
On an olyphauntes backe in strength so stable
Whiche it to bere was good and able
Hauynge in her hande a cup of golde
Sette with perles ryght many afolde
She sayd she was the lady of rychesse
The quene of welth and worldely glory
Praynge me to company with her noblenesse
And she than wolde promote me shortely
To innumerable ryches and make me worthy
Where I am poore and sette by nought
By her to worshyp I sholde be brought
Unto her I answered I wolde not so
As for to hunt in the parke of pryde
The whiche to Clennes is mortall fo
But with Dyscrecyon I wyll abyde
Whiche doth a wyfe for me prouyde
By whome I shall haue the possessyowne
Of heuenly kyngdome & grete renowne
So forth I went and had grete trauayle
Without the comfort of ony persons
Saue of dyscrecyon whiche dyd me counsayle
As she went walkynge with me alone
Unto her I made full grete mone
And lykened the wyldernes by morall scence
Unto worldely trouble by good experyence
She sayd the fyrst lady that I dyd mete
Iclyped was dame Sensualyte
Whiche can well flater with wordes swete
Causynge a man to fall into fragylyte
And for to haunt the carnall freylte
Whiche vnto clennes is abhomynable
For they in werke be gretely varyable
The seconde was pryde enduyd with couetyse
A lady of ryght fruytles medytacyon
Delytynge gretly in the synne of auaryce
The whiche is cause of her dampnacyon
For she by her fals supportacyon
Blyndeth many a mannes conscyence
And dryueth ryght oft fer in absence
So ferther I went tyll at the last
I was in a mase goynge in and oute
Ther was none other way I was agast
But forth I walked in grete doute
Now here now there and so rounde aboute
Than sayd vnto me dame Dyscrecyon
Ye are in the besynes of worldely fastyon
There in I trauayled by longe space
Tyll that I mette a lady gloryous
Indued with vertue and grete grace
To whom I sayd o lady precyous
As ye seme to be good and vertuous
I you beseche now without delaye
Unto dame Clennes to teche me the waye
I Sapyence now wyll shewe to the
The ryght waye vnto fayre clennes
And yf thou wylt be ruled by me
Thou shalt mary that noble prynces
Yes that wyll I sayd than douteles
Dyscrecyon sayd she wolde be my suerte
Sapyence sayd none better myght be
Than sayd dyscrecyon to dame sapyence
Welcome to vs my syster dere
And I to her dyd humble reuerence
Saynge who had went to fynde you here
Yes she sayd I haue ben neere
You often tymes syth my departynge
And haue ben cause of your goode gydynge

Capitulum X.

Come on your waye walke on a pace
For ye longe for to haue a syght
Of dame Clennes so clere a face
So goodely of body in beauty bryght
That there can not be so fayre a wyght
So forth we walked to a ryuer syde
That ebbed and flowed at euery tyde
Than I saw a castell a pales royall
Bylded with marble blacke as the gette
With glasse wyndowes as clere as crystall
Whiche on the other syde was sette
No man to the castell myght gette
But ouer the water on a lytell brydge
Not halfe so brode as a hous rydge
But as I cast myn eye than asyde
I saw a lady wounderous fayre
Demure of contenaunce without pryde
That went her selfe for to repayre
By the water syde to take the ayre
Beholde and se than sayd dame sapyence
Yonder is dame Clennes the sterre of excellence
Full glad was I than in my mynde
For to se that flour of complacence
The syght of her dyd my herte bynde
Euer her to loue with percynge influence
Unto her I sayd o well of contynence
Unto your grace fayne wolde I go
Ner lettynge of this water blo
To me she answered than agayne
Saynge this worlde withouten mys
Is but a vanyte no thynge certayne
In the lyke wyse as this water is
Ye can not come to me now ywys
But by that brydge that goth ouer
This stormy troublous & wawy water
Therof sayd sapyence he shall not lette
Well sayd Clennes be you his gyde
And dyscrecyon also for to be sette
For to vpholde hym vnto the other syde
That he do not in the water slyde
So to the brydge they dyde me lede
I quacked than for fere and drede
I sawe there wryten this lytterall sence
No man this brydge may ouer go
But he be pure without neglygence
And stedfast in goddes byleue also
Yf he be ignoraunt and do not so
He must nedys into this water fall
Ouer the heed and be drowned with all
They led me ouer this brydge so peryllous
Tyll that I came to a preuy place
Where were wryten with letters gloryous
This is the kyngdome of grete grace
No man by yonde this marke may trace
But yf he be brought in by dame wysedome
If he so be he is moche welcome
So forthermore yet forth we went
Into a hall that was solacyous
Made of precyous stones splendent
That theym to se it was ryght wounderous
They were there so gretly plenteuous
That the hall paued was for the nones
With none other grauell but precyous stones

There was dame Clennes that lady gent
And eke her fader the kynge of loue
He satte in a chayre ryght clere and excellent
At the vpper ende of the hall aboue
He satte styll and dyd not remoue
Gyrde with wylowes and myght not se
No maner a thynge in his degre
He had two wynges ryght large and grete
And his body also was naked
And a dart in his ryght hand was sette
And a torche in his left hand brenned
A botell aboute his necke was hanged
His one leg armed and naked the other
Hym for to se it was a wonder
Sapyence bad me meruayll no thynge
For she wold shewe me the sygnifycacyon
Why he so sate by shorte rekenynge
Accordynge to a morylyzacyon
Now of the fyrste to make relacyon
Loue sholde be gyrde faste with stabylyte
Without whiche loue can haue no suerte
Loue may not se but is alway blynde
And wenyth no man can haue perseueraūce
Where that he loueth by naturall kynde
But he do shewe hym by wordes of vteraūce
Trught he bewreyeth hym by contenaunce
For hard it wyll be loue so to couere
But that som man shall it perceuere
Also his nakednes doth sygnyfy
That true loue no thynge ellys desyreth
But the very persone and eke body
That he so well and feruentely loueth
His wynges also well betokenyth
That his mynde fleeth vnto the persone
That he doth loue so well alone
And also loue is stryken with a sharpe darte
That maketh a man for to complayn
Whan that it hath wounded sore his herte
It brenneth hote lyke fyre certeyn
Than loue his purpose wolde fayne atteyn
And is euermore both hoot and drye
Tyll his lady gyue hym drynke of mercy
His one legge is armed to defende
The ryght that longeth vnto amyte
And wronge loue for to amende
His naked legge betokeneth charyte
That is the Ioye of grete felycyte
So charyte ryght loue and good concorde
With stablynes reygneth in this myghty lorde

Capitulum XI.

Than forth me led good dame Sapyence
Afore that myghty lordes mageste
Come on she sayd put the in presence
hat thou mayst se dame clennes beaute
Ponder in thy mynde by veryte
That so fayre as she was not quene helyn
Quene Ipolyte or yonge Polyxyn
This lady is clene without corrupcyon
And wereth thre crownes for her vyrgynyte
One is for people of perfyt relygyon
An other for maydens kepynge chastyte
The therde for true wedowes as y&superu; mayst se
I wyll the now to her fader present
Her for to mary yf she wyll consent
Than sayd dame sapyence o noble emperour
O souerayne lorde and royall potestate
O vyctoryous prynce & famous conquerour
O kynge of loue and seaser of debate
To the no creature may say chekmate
I present the now this vertuous knyght
For to mary clennes your doughter bryght
I thanke you he sayd for your good wyll
But he that to Clennes maryed must be
He must my commaundement fyrste fulfyll
As to scomfyte the dragon with heedes thre
That is a serpent of grete subtylte
Whiche well betokeneth as we do fynde
The worlde the flesshe & the deuyll by kynde
Sapyence sayd I sholde not fayle
To do his commaūdement for Clennes sake
As for to sle the dragon in batayle
That lay in a marys in a grete lake
Whiche was moche stynkynge foule & blake
Wysedome bade me be not aferde
For she wolde gyue me a shelde and swerde
And arme me also with fayre armure
To vaynquysshe that dragon so ferse & grete
She sayd it sholde be so good and sure
That I no harme of hym sholde gete
Though he his teth on me had sete
Yet sholde I slee hym for all his myght
By my grete strokes whan I dyd fyght
Fyrst she my legge harneys sette on
And after my plackerd of grete ryches
She armed me her selfe alone
And laced my helmet of her gentylnes
I thanked her for her grete goodnes
And gaue me my swerde and sheld also
Saynge lete vs to the dragon go
This is the armure for the soule
That in his epystole wrote saynt Poule
Good hope thy legge harneys shall be
The habergyn of ryghtwysnes gyrde w&supert; chastyte
Thy plackarde of besynes w&supert; braūches of almes dede
Thy shelde of beleue and mekenes for the hede
Thy swerde shall be the to defend
The worde of god the deuyll to blynde

Dame sapyence & I dyd take our lycence
Of the kynge of loue in vertue depured
And of his doughter shynynge in excellence
Whiche to me sayd with wordes assured
O vertuous knyght you for me haue dured
Ingrete wo & payne but thynke you verely
To scomfyt that dragon by wysedome shortly
Than went we forth to that serpent
In merueylous trauayle of sorowe and bale
By that tyme the daye ryght fayre was spent
And phebus his course began to auale
But at the last we came into a dale
Wher we felt the sauer of a dungeon
Of the foule and stynkynge dragon
Nere to that dragon there was a way
That men vsed vpon a fayre hyll
Unto hyghe heuen so fressh and gay
But that dragon lette theym theyr wyll
And by the way he dyd theym kyll
Bryngynge theym vnto the dungeon
Iclyped the place of grete oblyuyon
I had not be there halfe an houre
But that this dragon me approched
As though that he wolde me deuoure
He so fersly than on me marched
The batayle bytwene vs longe contynued
But he had me ryght sone ouercome
If I had not helpe of dame wysedome
I strake at hym fast with my swerde
And with my shelde dyd me defende
Wysedome bad me not be aferde
But my stroke that for to amende
As fer as my myght weld extende
So by her wordes I plucked vp myn herte
And dyd than vnto the dragon sterte
But he caught me than in his clawes
And so we wrasteled longe to gyder
But he hyld me sharpely in his pawes
Tyll wysedom my feblenesse dyd consyder
Beholde she sayd dame clennes yonder
Than as a syde I cast all my syght
I sawe that lady so pure and bryght
My strength than dobeled an hundred folde
And I from hym brake by vertuous prowes
My herte was warme that afore was colde
With the cōfortable syght of fayre dame clennes
Than I to hym gaue strokes of exces
And with my sharpe swerde cut of anone
Two of his heedes leuynge hym but one
These two heedes by good morall sens
The worlde and the flesshe do sygnyfy
As I in scrypture haue intellygence
The fyrste the worlde that is transytory
Lyeth bytwene man and heuenly glory
Lettyuge hym often of his passage
If it of hym can gete auauntage
The seconde is the flesshly desyre
That troubleth a man ryght sore within
Settynge his courage vpon a fyre
Causynge hym to enclyne to dedely syn
His flessh the batayll of hym doth wyn
Often bryngynge hym into dampnacyon
If repentaunce were not his saluacyon
Repentaunce alway requyreth mercy
And penaunce to god is a satisfaccyon
For god desyreth euermore truely
An humble herte full of contrycon
And the worlde desyreth restytucyon
Of goodes that haue be goten wrongfully
To be restored vnto the ryghtfull party
Whan I by wysedom had won the vyctory
Of these two heedes I was ryght glad
His thyrde heed marched ayenst me sharpely
But I my swerd in my hand had
Strykynge at hym with strokes sad
And blode of hym coude I drawe none
For he had nother flesshe ne bone
But at the last I dyd hym vaynquysshe
Dryuynge hym home to his derke regyon
Of infernall payne that shall not fynysshe
For hell is called his propre mancyon
And of all other of his opynyon
That do the preceptes of god forsake
And to deuelyche werkes theym do be take
God by his ryghtwysnes made a lawe
By whiche man for dedely synne is condēpned
If god his vengeaunce do not withdrawe
In euerlastynge payne he sholde be prysoned
But and man mercy of hym requyred
With penytent hert he sholde it haue
And with his mercy he wyll man saue.

Capitulum XII.
Whan I had scomfyte this serpent venymous
Sapyence to me ryght gentely sayd
Blessyd be god ye are so gracyous
That ye shall mary Clennes the mayd
But yet erwhyles ye were a frayd
Ye I sayd and swet full ryght sore
Tyll ye newe strength dyd me restore
This batayll was grete & longe endured
Whiche caused me to be ryght wery
But sapyence with her wordes me mured
With walles of comfort makynge me mery
Come on she sayd and walke on lyghtly
Unto the castell that we come fro
I answered to her I wolde do so
Than forth we went a grete pace
Tyll that we came to the castell syde
There mette vs ladyes with grete solace
And welcomed vs at the same tyde
So fayre a sort in the worlde so wyde
May not be founde by no maner of reason
As I sawe there at the same season
The fyrste lady that dyd vs mete
Iclyped was dame perseueraunce
Whiche to me sayd with wordes swete
Blessyd be god of your good gouernaunce
That hath kept you from the incomberaunce
Of the serpent with the heedes thre
And caused you vyctor of hym to be
Than came dame fayth that lady gloryous
Welcome she sayd with wordes amyable
I am ryght glad ye ar so vyctoryous
Of that foule dragon so abhomynable
She sayd that I was euermore stable
In her in dede eke worde and thought
Or elles my labour had ben to nought
Than spake the lady fayre dame charyte
Welcome vertue the noble veteran
Sythens that ye alway haue loued me
From the fyrst season that ye began
Bothe in your youth & syth ye were man
Ye haue had me in humble reuerence
And haue ben ruled by my preemynence
Than sayd dame prayer in my presence
Ye neuer cast me in oblyuyaunce
By no slouth nor wordely neglygence
But haue had me in grete remembraunce
Whiche hath ben to me very grete pleasaunce
Wherfore welcome vertue my dere
Unto this castell that ye se here
Than came fast to me dame lowelynes
Clyppynge me harde with louely chere
Byddynge me welcome with grete gladnes
As by her contenaūce it dyd well appere
Come on she sayd and walke on nere
So than amonge these fayre ladyes all
I went in to the grete castell hall
And there met me dame clennes blyue
And dame grace bare vp her trayne
Whiche euer to her was affyrmatyue
From whome dame clennes myght not refrayne
Than sayd she to me I am ryght fayne
That ye ar comen in to this place
Where ye shall wedde me in short space
Upon my kne I kneled than downe
Saynge o sterre of the blysse eterne
O well of vertue and of grete renowne
O dyuyne comfort moost sempyterne
Whan I your beautye do so well decerne
Ye set myn hert vpon a brennynge fyre
With feruent loue to come to my desyre
To me she answered in this wyse.
O my dere herte my spouse so pure
Why do ye not on your fete aryse
You of my true loue shall be sure
For ye my hert haue now in cure
Lete vs go now to our fader reuerente
So forthe vnto hym than we wente
Whan that we came afore his fayre face
Dame clennes made curtesye vnto the grounde
Saynge o fader kynge of grete grace
This knyght to loue ye are now bounde
And so am I for I haue often founde
Grete kyndnes on hym both nyght and day
For he hath loued me ryght well alway
Welcome he sayd ryght noble knyght
How haue ye done sythens your departynge
Haue ye scomfyted with your myght
The merueylous dragon so gretly stynkynge
Ye I sayd with the power shynynge
Of my maystresse good dame sapyence
I dyd hym vaynquysshe by her experyence
Wher is dame Sapyence than sayd he
And eke her syster dame dyscrecyon
Syr I sayd they are comen with me
And they haue had me in iurisdyccyon
Syns my departynge without destruccyon
Than spake dame sapyence by her faculte
Unto that myghty lordes mageste
Saynge this knyght than cleped vertue
Hath loued your doughter by longe contynuaūce
With stable loue so faythfull and true
And for her sake hath put to vteraunce
The thre heeded dragon by wyse puruyaunce
Wherfore me thynke he ought to mary
Your doughter Clennes that noble lady
The kynge sayd me thynke the same
If that my doughter wyll agre
And she do not she moche is to blame
Consyderynge his wysedome & grete beaute
Come hyder he sayd my doughter fre
To be wyfe to vertue wyll ye consent
Ye fader she sayd with hole entent
Than he called vnto his presence
Perseueraunce charyte and fydelyte
With lowlynes prayer and intellygence
Shewynge vnto theym the certeynte
How clennes his doughter wedded shall be
Unto me now vertu in all godely hast
By fore that thre dayes be ryght fully past
He called me than to his magnyfycence
Byddynge me go to bed and to rest
In the chaumbre of clene conscyence
Than so to do I thought it the best
For phebus was tourned into the west
So sapyence and I went forthe to bed
For lake of rest oppressed was my hed
A lytyll welp within this chaumbre was
That lay wakynge and barked alway
That no man in to it sholde passe
That wolde with conscyence make a fray
I dyd slepe there tyll that it was day
Than vp I rose and made me redy
Callynge vnto me dame sapyence shortely
Saynge vnto her o lady and maystres
O comfortable salue vnto euery sore
O fontayne of welth and carbuncle of clernes
Without ye helpe me I am forlore
Wherfore I shewe you as now before
Without I mary fayre dame clennes
I shall endure in mortall heuynes
Therof sayd she be no thynge adred
For ye shall mary here ryght soone
By me your mater shall be well sped
And the same daye it shall be doone
Aboute the houre truely of noone
And there shall be at your good dyner
Charyte fayth penaunce and prayer
Dame sapyence led me into a gardeyn
Where Clennes was amonge floures swete
Her to repayre without dysdeyn
As I to her wente she dyd me mete
Bryngynge me a floure called the margarete
Whiche is a floure ryght swete and precyous
Indued with beaute and moche vertuous
This floure I kyst often ryght swetely
Settynge it nere vnto my hert
Dame Clennes loked vpon me louely
Saynge that I sholde not depert
Tyll she had shewed me a grete couert
So with her I wente without delay
Where byrdes sate on many a spray
By this tyme phebus had begon
His ascencyall cours in grete bryghtnes
In to the sygne of the fierous lyon
Exylynge the fenerous frosty coldnes
And depryuynge the noxyall derkenes
And also setherus his fragraunt breth
Dystylled had vpon euery heth
Than to her I sayd my lady dere
Beholde this weder so clere and fayre
How royall walkynge that it is here
Lyke a place of pleasure you to repayre
Amonge the floures so swete of ayre
An other she had as she me tolde
Bryghter than phebus a thousande folde
This is a place of recreacyon
My mynde to comfort after study
In welth pleasure and delectacyon
For yf I sholde my selfe applye
Euer to pray to god an hye
Without this place I may not be sure
An other tyme in prayer to endure
But the other gardyn is celestyall
That longeth to vs by enherytaunce
And is entayled to vs in generall
For our clene lyfe & vertuous gouernaūce
Who that vs loueth without doubtauūce
With vs shall go to eternall glory
In short space or elles to purgatory
Than forth we went to her fader royall
Whiche welcomed vs by grete humylyte
Saynge my doughter dere and specyall
Ye shall this daye by grete solempnyte
Be wedded to vertue with benygnyte
We kneled downe and thanked his grace
And than forth we went to an other place

Capitulum XIII.
In to a chapell gayly gloryfyed
And also hanged with cloth of tyssue
A place it was ryght gretly deyfyed
The roof was set with stones of vertue
As with rubyes and emeraudes bryght of hue
The rood loft was yuery garnysshed with gold
Set with dyamoundes ryght many a fold
Ther I dyd se the arke of god
With many sayntes that suffred martyrdom
And also I sawe there Moyses rod
And saynt Austyn that brought crystendom
Into englonde by his grete wysedom
And the xii. apostles that fast gan wryte
Of our byleue and eke dyd endyte
There was saynt peter the noble pope
That dyd stande on the ryght syde
Of the hyghe auter in a ryche cope
Dame clennes and I dyd there abyde
And vp there came than at that tyde
Dame prayer with her syster charyte
And eke dame penytence with humylyte
Than came dame fayth anone to vs
With ryghtwysenes peas and dame mercy
With dame contrycyon gay and gloryous
Whiche after theym dyd not longe tary
And than came bede and eke saynt gregory
With saynt ambrose the noble doctour
Whiche of our fayth was good protectour
Than came the kynge of feruent loue
Led with argos in goodely wyse
Without whome he myght not remoue
From his sete by ryght prudent gyse
Who loueth argos wyll not deuyse
Nor yet begynne no maner of thynge
Without in his mynde hese good endynge
Also saynt Ierome the noble cardynall
Came vp to vs by humble reuerence
Whiche euermore was a good doctrynall
Prechynge to vs by vertuous influence
With exhortacyon of dyuyne complacence
And than foure bysshoppes in grete dygnyte
Ryght connynge cernynge vnto the deyte
On hym wayted by grete dylygence
And neuer dyd forsake his company
But hym obeyed by good experyence
And from his cōmaundement dyd not vary
But in the chapell they dyd there tary
And than saynt Ierome wente to the kynge
Of feruent loue vnto hym saynge
O amyable kynge seasour of debate
O ioyner of vertue and well of vnyte
O royall emperour o souerayne estate
O messenger of feruent amyte
O feruent dart of cordyall pryuyte
Here is your doughter fayre dame clennes
That must be maryed with good ryghtwysenes
Unto vertue the louely knyght
Whiche the batayle now hath won
By dame sapyence helpe and myght
Of the foule thre heeded dragon
This maryage by me shall be don
Go ye now streyght into your tabernacle
Whiche is to you moost propre habytacle
Than the souerayne kynge to hym dyd call
Dame fayth dyscrecyon and dame sapyence
With dame contrycyon & charyte withall
And eke dame mercy and dame penytence
Unto theym saynge ye haue intellygence
That this daye clennes my doughter dere
Shall be maryed to vertue that ye se here
Than they dyde all come vnto me
With dame peas and dame grace
And after theym came dame virgynyte
Whiche in her armes dyd me enbrace
Saynge that I was to her grete solace
Gyuynge me vnto my good maryage
A gowne of syluer for grete aparage
She gafe an other of the same
Unto dame clennes puttynge it one
Upon her back withouten blame
After whiche Clennes wente anone
Unto her fader her selfe alone
And I with saynt Ierome dyd there tary
To wed dame Clennes that noble lady
And all the ladyes with meke contenence
Stode on a rewe besyde the closette
Of Clennes fader without resystence
Whiche hanged was gayly with blue veluet
And with perles & rubyes rychely set
Than forth came Clennes with two aūgels led
Whiche theyr golden wynges abrode dyd spred
Dame grace after her bare vp her trayn
And .xv. ladyes her dyd ensue
Fyrst went dame humylyte certayn
And after her than dyd pursue
Dame fayth in stablenes so true
Ledynge with her the fayre dame pease
That welth and ryches doth well encrease
Than went dame reason with perseueraūce
And than dame mercy with contricyon
And than exersyce with remembraunce
After whome went dame restytucyon
With dame prayer and dame confessyon
And dame charyte with obedyence
And after theym came fayre dame abstynence
Saynt Ierome dyd make there coniunccyon
Of dame Clennes and me in matrimonye
With heuenly wordes and vertuous fastyon
And aungels came downe from heuen hye
As saynt Mychell with gabryell & the gerachye
To helpe saynt peter the masse to synge
The organs went and the bellys dyd rynge
My penne for feblenes may not now wryte
Nor my tonge for domnes may not expresse
Nor my mynde for neglygence may not endyte
Of the aungelycall Ioye and swete gladnesse
That I sawe there without heuynesse
And whan this weddynge holy was fynysshed
The aungels than to heuen vanysshed
Than downe I went in to the hall
Where ordeyned was by grete solempnyte
A dyner of vertue moost celestyall
To whiche came my wyf full of benygnyte
On the one syde led by good auctoryte
With saynt Edmond the noble kynge
And martyr whiche dyd her downe brynge
And she was led on the other syde
With saynt Edward the kynge and confessour
And so bytwene theym wente this bryde
To whom all the ladyes made grete honour
As alway seruynge her without errour
And a lytell whyle anone after her
Ergos brought downe her noble fader
The kynge of loue than sat hym downe
At the table for that tyme to ette
Causynge dame Clennes for her renowne
On his one syde than for to be sette
And I on the other without ony lette
And besyde me sapyence and dyscrecyon
And than by theym sat dame contrycyon
Than sate saynt Edwarde with vyrgynyte
And afore hym sate dame obedyence
Saynt Edmond and dame charyte
And than dame prayer with dame abstynence
And than dame fayth shynynge in excellence
With saynt Ierome and saynt Austeyn
And than saynt gregory without dysdeyn
There was two aungels holdynge fast
The table cloth at euery ende
Knelynge downe humbly and stedfast
Whose seruyce no man coude amende
Other there were that dyd entende
Us for to serue with theyr grete dylygence
That in theym founde coude be no neglygence
There dyd saynt Peter by grete holynes
Serue vs of our swete lordes body
Fyrst he serued the fader of clennes
And after that he serued her shortly
With charyte fayth and dame mercy
And I with dyscrecyon and dame sapyence
Of saynt Peter was serued with grete indulgence
So dame obedyence with contrycyon
With saynt Edwarde and virgynyte
In lykewyse were serued without corrupcyon
And saynt Edmond with dame charyte
And saynt Ierome with dame humylyte
With saynt austyn and saynt gregory
What nede I lenger of theym specyfy
This was a fest moost swete and precyous
To fede the soule with dyuyne comfort
This was a mete moost dere and gloryous
That causeth all man for to resorte
To sempyternall lyfe and comforte
Than saynt ambrose beynge dyuyne
After our mete gafe vs good wyne
By this tyme was I .lx. yere olde
And desyred for to lyue in peace
For I began to growe two folde
And my feblenes dyde sore encreace
For nature her strength than dyd seace
Wherfore after this ghoostly fest
I thought with my wyfe to abyde in rest
And I to her sayd with louynge chere
O my swete spouse moost fayre and beauteous
To me euer ryght leyfe and dere
Where is your lande that is solacyous
Ye shewyd me of your gardeyn gloryous
Unto whiche now fayne wolde I go
There for to dwell and you also
Syr she sayd the aungell raphaell
Shall with these martyrs & noble confessours
Brynge you thyder with theym to dwell
Where ye shall see all your progenytours
With many sayntes and gloryous auctours
This lande is heuen that to vs longeth
As our euydence the gospell telleth
Than came my fader in lawe to vs
Saynge by ryght I dyd combynd
Clennes my doughter with vertue precyous
And you must I loue by naturell kynde
For on you now is all my mynde
Afore hym I kyst my wyfe moost swetely
For we loued to gyder hote and truely
Than came my good aungell to me
Causynge me with hym for to go
With clennes my wyfe wher I dyd se
The paynes of hell full of grete wo
There was the dragon that I dyd slo
Bounde with chaynes in fyer infynall
With the seuen dedely synnes in generall
Than my good aungell to me sayd
If ye had loued dame sensualyte
The whiche with you dyd make a brayde
Ye had ben dampned by ryght and equyte
In to this pytte full of all iniquyte
Wherfore thanke god that sent you wysedome
Suche deedly perylles for to ouercome
Also the lady with the cup of golde
Is here condempned for her grete pryde
In endeles payne both hote and colde
Where in for synne she shall abyde
This is a dongeon longe and wyde
Made for theym that do synne dedely
And of cryst Ihesu wyll axe no mercy
This is a place full of all derkenes
Wherin be serpentes foull and odyous
This is a place of mortall heuynes
Where I sawe deuyles blacke and tedyous
Dampned soules turmented with hokes rygorous
This is the vppermoost parte of hell
In whiche paynyms dampned do dwell
For as moche as they lacked instruccyon
For to be leue in god omnypotent
They haue deserued the lesse correccyon
Yet theyr payne haue none extinguysshement
For they are dampned by true sentyment
For theyr byleue and fals idolatry
That made theyr goddes of mars & mercury
Than went we doune to an other vaute
Where Iewes lay in grete paynes stronge
Whome deuylles tourmented by grete assaute
Drawynge theym with hokes a longe
For theyr opynyon so fals and wronge
Whiche byleued not in the natyuyte
Of Ihesu cryst and the vyrgyn Mare
Nor yet that he dyd suffre passyon
Bothe for theym and all mankynde
Nother yet of his resurreccyon
In theyr byleue they are so blynde
Yet as in bokes wryten we do fynde
That they haue ben taught many a tyme
For to forsake theyr owne fals cryme
Than went we downe to a depper vale
Where crysten soules dyd weppe & crye
In grete sorowe payne and bale
Brennynge in fyer moost hote and drye
And some in Ice ryght depe dyd lye
For to expresse it is impossyble
The paynes there they are so horryble
These crysten men knowe goddes lawe
And euery daye had informacyon
From deuelysshe werkes theym to withdrawe
That they sholde not fall in dampnacyon
Yet wyll they not make sequestracyon
Of goddes cōmaundement but syn deedly
Therfore here are they dampned ryght wysey
And thou haddest set thy delectacyon
In flesshely pleasure and vayne glory
Thou haddest ben here without saluacyon
Without thou of god had axed mercy
Who that it axeth shall haue it truely
Yf he be contryt and do repent
That he his lyfe in yll hath spent
This place sythens it is moost heuy
Moost derke and moost ferre from lyghtnes
As philosophers afferme by astronomy
Is in the myddes of the erthe doutles
That is a place of dyssolate derkenes
Wherfore by reason it must nedes be sette
In the myddes of the erthe both longe & grette.

Capitulum XIIII.

My good aungell by his grete vertue
Shewed me all this in a shorte space
And after hym I dyd than pursue
With my wyfe vnto the fayre place
That we came fro full of all solace
Where was my fader in the company
Of many sayntes that dyd there tary
My wyfe and me than for to brynge
To the place of eternall glory
With heuenly tewnes swetely syngynge
That theym to here it was grete melody
More than ony tonge can specyfy
This was theyr songe so swete and gloryous
That they dyd synge with voyce so vertuous
O celestyall kynge one two and thre
All people prayse the god and lorde
Whiche art in heuen o noble trynyte
Whose royall power and miserycorde
Confermed is by thyn hye accorde
On vs with trouth for to endure
Withouten ende as we are sure
Glory be to the fader almyghty
And to the sone and to the holy ghoost
Thre persones and one god truely
Whose power neuer can be loost
For he is lorde of myghtes moost
And so hath ben without begynnynge
And euer shall be without endynge
Whan we were in the ayre of asure
There dyd vs mete the noble Ierarchy
As Cherubyn and Seraphyn so pure
With other aungels in theyr company
That dyd proclayme & synge on hye
With voyce insacyat moost melodyous
To god aboue Sanctus sanctus sanctus
There dyd I se the planettes seuen
Moue in ordre by alteracyon
To merueylous for me to neuen
For they seassed not theyr operacyon
Some assended some made declynacyon
Entrynge theyr houses of the .xii. synes
Some indyrectly and some by dyrecte lynes
To heuen we styed a place moost gloryous
Where that we dyd beholde the deyte
With insaciable contenaunce moost desyrous
And truely than the more that we
Dyd loke vpon his souerayne beaute
The more our desyre dyd encreace
This is a Ioye that shall not seace
This is a regyon moost full of swetnes
This is a realme of delectacyon
This is a lande of infenyte gladnes
Without ony stormy tribulacyon
This place is of eterne saluacyon
Where aungels and sayntes for theyr solace
Euermore do loke on goddes face
What sholde I wryte thynges of dyuynyte
Or endyght of suche maters hye
Sythen it no thynge longeth to my faculte
Therfore of it I wyll not lenger tarye
For fere that I in it sholde varye
And by cause that trouth shall be my mede
I wyll now leue and take me to my crede
So vertue and clennes by good ryght
Truely in maryage ioyned must be
For they loue to gyder with all theyr myght
Without dyscencyon or duplycyte
And they both are alway in vnyte
To whome heuen by tayll generall
Entayled is by a dede memoryall
Now are they to gyder to heuen gone
There for to dwell in Ioye eternall
Where that there is the heuenly trone
Of our sauyour Ihesu deere & specyall
Who that hym loueth truely ouer all
Ledynge his lyfe with vertue and clennes
Shall come vnto the glory endeles
But in the fynysshynge of my mater
To god the maker of all thynge
Deuoutely now I make my prayer
To saufe kynge Henry our ryghtfull kynge
From all treason and dolefull mornynge
And for to maynteyn the grete honour
Of this swete rede rose so fayre a colour
This floure was kepte ryght longe in close
Amonge the leuys holsom and sote
And regally sprange and arose
Out of the noble stoke and rote
Of the rede rose tre to be our bote
After our bale sente by grete grace
On vs to reygne by ryght longe space
O lorde god what Ioye was this
Unto his moder so good and gracyous
Whan that she sawe her sone I wys
Of his ennemys to be so vyctoryous
It caused her to be moost Ioyous
And yet there of no wonder why
For he was ryght longe from her truely
A ioyfull metynge than bytwene
The moder and the sone so dere
A daye of gladnes bryght and shene
Fressher than phebus myddaye spere
Whan her sone to vs dyd appere
He dyd vs lyght with his pure bemys
Quenchynge of mars the fyrous lemys
O heuenly kynge o eternall emperoure
O thre persons and one god equall
I praye the to kepe from all doloure
This moder with her sone in specyall
With all theyr noble buddes in generall
And laude be to the that dyd enhaunce
Hym to his ryght and propre herytaunce
The whyte rose that w&supert; tempestes troublous
Aualed was and eke blowen asyde
The reed rose fortyfyed and made delycyous
It pleased god for hym so to prouyde
That his redolent buddes shall not slyde
But euer encrease and be vyctoryous
Of fatall brerys whiche be contraryous
Thus god by grace dyd well combyne
The rede rose and the whyte in maryage
Beynge oned ryght clere doth shyne
In all clennes and vertuous courage
Of whose ryght and royall lynage
Prynce Henry is spronge our kynge to be
After his fader by ryght good equyte
O noble prynce Henry our seconde treasure
Surmontynge in vertue & myrour of beaute
O geme of gentylnes & lanterne of plasure
O rubycound blossome and sterre of humylyte
O famous bud full of benygnyte
I pray to god well for to encrease
Your hyghe estate in rest and pease
O thoughfull hert for lack of connynge
Now layde to slepe this longe wynters nyght
Ryse vp agayne loke on the shynynge
Of fayre lucyna clere and bryght
Beholde eke mercury with his fayre lyght
Castynge a doune his stremys mery
It may well glad thyn emyspery
O gower fountayne moost aromatyke
I the now lake for to depure
My rudnes with thy lusty retoryke
And also I mys as I am sure
My mayster Chaucers to take the cure
Of my penne for he was expert
In eloquent termes subtyll and couert
Where is now lydgate flourynge in sentence
That shold my mynde forge to endyte
After the termes of famous eloquence
And strength my penne well for to wryte
With maters fresshe of pure delyte
They can not helpe me there is no remedy
But for to praye to god almyghty
For to dystyll the dewe of influence
Upon my brayn so dull and rude
And to enlumyn me with his sapyence
That I my rudnes may exclude
And in my mater well to conclude
Unto thy pleasure and to the reders all
To whome I excuse me now in generall.

Explicit exemplum virtutis.

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The Zenana

WHAT is there that the world hath not
Gathered in yon enchanted spot?
Where, pale, and with a languid eye,
The fair Sultana listlessly
Leans on her silken couch, and dreams
Of mountain airs, and mountain streams.
Sweet though the music float around,
It wants the old familiar sound;

And fragrant though the flowers are breathing,
From far and near together wreathing,
They are not those she used to wear,
Upon the midnight of her hair.—

She's very young, and childhood's days
With all their old remembered ways,
The empire of her heart contest
With love, that is so new a guest;
When blushing with her Murad near,
Half timid bliss, half sweetest fear,
E'en the beloved past is dim,
Past, present, future, merge in him.
But he, the warrior and the chief,
His hours of happiness are brief;
And he must leave Nadira's side
To woo and win a ruder bride;

Sought, sword in hand and spur on heel,
The fame, that weds with blood and steel.
And while from Delhi far away,
His youthful bride pines through the day,
Weary and sad: thus when again
He seeks to bind love's loosen'd chain;
He finds the tears are scarcely dry
Upon a cheek whose bloom is faded,
The very flush of victory
Is, like the brow he watches, shaded.
A thousand thoughts are at her heart,
His image paramount o'er all,
Yet not all his, the tears that start,
As mournful memories recall
Scenes of another home, which yet
That fond young heart can not forget.
She thinks upon that place of pride,
Which frowned upon the mountain's side;

While round it spread the ancient plain,
Her steps will never cross again.
And near those mighty temples stand,
The miracles of mortal hand,
Where, hidden from the common eye,
The past's long buried secrets lie,
Those mysteries of the first great creed,
Whose mystic fancies were the seed
Of every wild and vain belief,
That held o'er man their empire brief,
And turned beneath a southern sky,
All that was faith to poetry.
Hence had the Grecian fables birth,
And wandered beautiful o'er earth;
Till every wood, and stream, and cave,
Shelter to some bright vision gave:
For all of terrible and strange,
That from those gloomy caverns sprung,

From Greece received a graceful change,
That spoke another sky and tongue,
A finer eye, a gentler hand,
Than in their native Hindoo land.

'Twas thence Nadira came, and still
Her memory kept that lofty hill;
The vale below, her place of birth,
That one charmed spot, her native earth.
Still haunted by that early love,
Which youth can feel, and youth alone;
An eager, ready, tenderness,
To all its after-life unknown.
When the full heart its magic flings,
Alike o'er rare and common things,
The dew of morning's earliest hour,
Which swells but once from leaf and flower,

From the pure life within supplied,
A sweet but soon exhausted tide.

There falls a shadow on the gloom,
There steals a light step through the room,
Gentle as love, that, though so near,
No sound hath caught the list'ning ear.
A moment's fond watch o'er her keeping.
Murad beholds Nadira weeping;
He who to win her lightest smile,
Had given his heart's best blood the while.
She turned—a beautiful delight
Has flushed the pale one into rose,
Murad, her love, returned to-night,
Her tears, what recks she now of those?
Dried in the full heart's crimson ray,
Ere he can kiss those tears away—

And she is seated at his feet,
Too timid his dear eyes to meet;
But happy; for she knows whose brow
Is bending fondly o'er her now.
And eager, for his sake, to hear
The records red of sword and spear,
For his sake feels the colour rise,
His spirit kindle in her eyes,
Till her heart beating joins the cry
Of Murad, and of Victory.

City of glories now no more,
His camp extends by Bejapore,
Where the Mahratta's haughty race
Has won the Moslem conqueror's place;
A bolder prince now fills the throne,
And he will struggle for his own.

'And yet,' he said, 'when evening falls
Solemn above those mouldering walls,
Where the mosques cleave the starry air,
Deserted at their hour of prayer,
And rises Ibrahim's lonely tomb,
'Mid weed-grown shrines, and ruined towers,
All marked with that eternal gloom
Left by the past to present hours.
When human pride and human sway
Have run their circle of decay;
And, mocking—the funereal stone,
Alone attests its builder gone.
Oh! vain such temple, o'er the sleep
Which none remain to watch or weep.
I could not choose but think how vain
The struggle fierce for worthless gain.
And calm and bright the moon looked down
O'er the white shrines of that fair town;

While heavily the cocoa-tree
Drooped o'er the walls its panoply,
A warrior proud, whose crested head
Bends mournful o'er the recent dead,
And shadows deep athwart the plain
Usurp the silver moonbeam's reign;
For every ruined building cast
Shadows, like memories of the past.
And not a sound the wind brought nigh,
Save the far jackal's wailing cry,
And that came from the field now red
With the fierce banquet I had spread:
Accursed and unnatural feast,
For worm, and fly, and bird, and beast;
While round me earth and heaven recorded
The folly of life's desperate game,
And the cold justice still awarded
By time, which makes all lots the same.

Slayer or slain, it matters not,
We struggle, perish, are forgot!
The earth grows green above the gone,
And the calm heaven looks sternly on.
'Twas folly this—the gloomy night
Fled before morning's orient light;
City and river owned its power,
And I, too, gladdened with the hour;
I saw my own far tents extend
My own proud crescent o'er them bend;
I heard the trumpet's glorious voice
Summon the warriors of my choice.
Again impatient on to lead,
I sprang upon my raven steed,
Again I felt my father's blood
Pour through my veins its burning flood.
My scimetar around I swung,
Forth to the air its lightning sprung,

A beautiful and fiery light,
The meteor of the coming fight.

'I turned from each forgotten grave
To others, which the name they bear
Will long from old oblivion save
The heroes of the race I share.
I thought upon the lonely isle
Where sleeps the lion-king the while,

Who looked on death, yet paused to die
Till comraded by Victory.
And he, fire noblest of my line,
Whose tomb is now the warrior's shrine,
(Where I were well content to be,
So that such fame might live with me.)
The light of peace, the storm of war,
Lord of the earth, our proud Akbar.
'What though our passing day but be
A bubble on eternity;
Small though the circle is, yet still
'Tis ours to colour at our will.
Mine be that consciousness of life
Which has its energies from strife,
Which lives its utmost, knows its power,
Claims from the mind its utmost dower—

With fiery pulse, and ready hand,
That wills, and willing wins command—
That boldly takes from earth its best—
To whom the grave can be but rest.
Mine the fierce free existence spent
Mid meeting ranks and armed tent:—
Save the few moments which I steal
At thy beloved feet to kneel—
And own the warrior's wild career
Has no such joy as waits him here—
When all that hope can dream is hung
Upon the music of thy tongue.
Ah! never is that cherished face
Banished from its accustomed place—
It shines upon my weariest night
It leads me on in thickest fight:
All that seems most opposed to be
Is yet associate with thee—

Together life and thee depart,
Dream—idol—treasure of my heart.'

Again, again Murad must wield
His scimetar in battle-field:
And must he leave his lonely flower
To pine in solitary bower?
Has power no aid has wealth no charm,
The weight of absence to disarm?
Alas! she will not touch her lute—
What!—sing?—and not for Murad's ear?
The echo of the heart is mute,
And that alone makes music dear.
In vain, in vain that royal hall
Is decked as for a festival.
The sunny birds, whose shining wings
Seem as if bathed in golden springs,

Though worth the gems they cost—and fair
As those which knew her earlier care.
The flowers—though there the rose expand
The sweetest depths wind ever fanned.
Ah! earth and sky have loveliest hues—
But none to match that dearest red,
Born of the heart, which still renews
The life that on itself is fed.
The maiden whom we love bestows
Her magic on the haunted rose.
Such was the colour—when her cheek
Spoke what the lip might never speak.
The crimson flush which could confess
All that we hoped—but dared not guess.
That blush which through the world is known
To love, and to the rose alone—
A sweet companionship, which never
The poet's dreaming eye may sever.

And there were tulips, whose rich leaves
The rainbow's dying light receives;
For only summer sun and skies
Could lend to earth such radiant dyes;
But still the earth will have its share,
The stem is green—the foliage fair—
Those coronals of gems but glow
Over the withered heart below—
That one dark spot, like passion's fire,
Consuming with its own desire.
And pale, as one who dares not turn
Upon her inmost thoughts, and learn,
If it be love their depths conceal,
Love she alone is doomed to feel—
The jasmine droopeth mournfully
Over the bright anemone,
The summer's proud and sun-burnt child:
In vain the queen is not beguiled,

They waste their bloom. Nadira's eye
Neglects them—let them pine and die.
Ah! birds and flowers may not suffice
The heart that throbs with stronger ties.
Again, again Murad is gone,
Again his young bride weeps alone:
Seeks her old nurse, to win her ear
With magic stories once so dear,
And calls the Almas to her aid.
With graceful dance, and gentle singing,
And bells like those some desert home
Hears from the camel's neck far ringing.
Alas! she will not raise her brow;
Yet stay—some spell hath caught her now:
That melody has touched her heart.
Oh, triumph of Zilara's art;
She listens to the mournful strain,
And bids her sing that song again.

'My lonely lute, how can I ask
For music from thy silent strings?
It is too sorrowful a task,
When only swept by memory's wings:
Yet waken from thy charmed sleep,
Although I wake thee but to weep.

'Yet once I had a thousand songs,
As now I have but only one.
Ah, love, whate'er to thee belongs.
With all life's other links, has done;
And I can breathe no other words
Than thou hast left upon the chords.

'They say Camdeo's place of rest,
When floating down the Ganges' tide,
Is in the languid lotus breast,
Amid whose sweets he loves to hide.
Oh, false and cruel, though divine,
What dost thou in so fair a shrine?

'And such the hearts that thou dost choose,
As pure, as fair, to shelter thee;
Alas! they know not what they lose
Who chance thy dwelling-place to be.
For, never more in happy dream
Will they float down life's sunny stream.

'My gentle lute, repeat one name,
The very soul of love, and thine:
No; sleep in silence, let me frame
Some other love to image mine;

Steal sadness from another's tone,
I dare not trust me with my own.

'Thy chords will win their mournful way,
All treasured thoughts to them belong;
For things it were so hard to say
Are murmured easily in song—
It is for music to impart
The secrets of the burthened heart.

'Go, taught by misery and love,
And thou hast spells for every ear:
But the sweet skill each pulse to move,
Alas! hath bought its knowledge dear—
Bought by the wretchedness of years,
A whole life dedicate to tears.'

The voice has ceased, the chords are mute,
The singer droops upon her lute;

But, oh, the fulness of each tone
Straight to Nadira's heart hath gone—
As if that mournful song revealed
Depths in that heart till then concealed,
A world of melancholy thought,
Then only into being brought;
Those tender mysteries of the soul,
Like words on an enchanted scroll,
Whose mystic meaning but appears
When washed and understood by tears.
She gaged upon the singer's face;
Deeply that young brow wore the trace
Of years that leave their stamp behind:
The wearied hope—the fever'd mind—
The heart which on itself hath turned,
Worn out with feelings—slighted—spurned—
Till scarce one throb remained to show
What warm emotions slept below,

Never to be renewed again,
And known but by remembered pain.

Her cheek was pale—impassioned pale—
Like ashes white with former fire,
Passion which might no more prevail,
The rose had been its own sweet pyre.
You gazed upon the large black eyes,
And felt what unshed tears were there;
Deep, gloomy, wild, like midnight skies,
When storms are heavy on the air—
And on the small red lip sat scorn,
Writhing from what the past had borne.
But far too proud to sigh—the will,
Though crushed, subdued, was haughty still;
Last refuge of the spirit's pain,
Which finds endurance in disdain.

Others wore blossoms in their hair,
And golden bangles round the arm.
She took no pride in being fair,
The gay delight of youth to charm;
The softer wish of love to please,
What had she now to do with these?
She knew herself a bartered slave,
Whose only refuge was the grave.
Unsoftened now by those sweet notes,
Which half subdued the grief they told,
Her long black hair neglected floats
O'er that wan face, like marble cold;
And carelessly her listless hand
Wandered above her lute's command
But silently—or just a tone
Woke into music, and was gone.

'Come hither, maiden, take thy seat,'
Nadira said, 'here at my feet.'

And, with the sweetness of a child
Who smiles, and deems all else must smile,
She gave the blossoms which she held,
And praised the singer's skill the while;
Then started with a sad surprise,
For tears were in the stranger's eyes.
Ah, only those who rarely know
Kind words, can tell how sweet they seem.
Great God, that there are those below
To whom such words are like a dream.

'Come,' said the young Sultana, 'come
To our lone garden by the river,
Where summer hath its loveliest home,
And where Camdeo fills his quiver.
If, as thou sayest, 'tis stored with flowers,
Where will he find them fair as ours?
And the sweet songs which thou canst sing
Methinks might charm away his sting.'

The evening banquet soon is spread—
There the pomegranate's rougher red
Was cloven, that it might disclose
A colour stolen from the rose—
The brown pistachio's glossy shell,
The citron where faint odours dwell;
And near the watermelon stands,
Fresh from the Jumna's shining sands;
And golden grapes, whose bloom and hue
Wear morning light and morning dew,
Or purple with the deepest dye
That flushes evening's farewell sky.
And in the slender vases glow—
Vases that seem like sculptured snow—
The rich sherbets are sparkling bright
With ruby and with amber light.
A fragrant mat the ground o'erspread,
With an old tamarind overhead,

With drooping bough of darkest green,
Forms for their feast a pleasant screen.

'Tis night, but such delicious time
Would seem like day in northern clime.
A pure and holy element,
Where light and shade, together blent,
Are like the mind's high atmosphere,
When hope is calm, and heaven is near.
The moon is young—her crescent brow
Wears its ethereal beauty now,
Unconscious of the crime and care,
Which even her brief reign must know,
Till she will pine to be so fair,
With such a weary world below.
A tremulous and silvery beam
Melts over palace, garden, stream;

Each flower beneath that tranquil ray,
Wears other beauty than by day,
All pale as if with love, and lose
Their rich variety of hues—
But ah, that languid loveliness
Hath magic, to the noon unknown,
A deep and pensive tenderness,
The heart at once feels is its own—
How fragrant to these dewy hours,
The white magnolia lifts its urn
The very Araby of flowers,
Wherein all precious odours burn.
And when the wind disperses these,
The faint scent of the lemon trees
Mingles with that rich sigh which dwells
Within the baubool's golden bells.

The dark green peepul's glossy leaves,
Like mirrors each a ray receives,
While luminous the moonlight falls,
O'er pearl kiosk and marble walls,
Those graceful palaces that stand
Most like the work of peri-land.
And rippling to the lovely shore,
The river tremulous with light,
On its small waves, is covered o'er
With the sweet offerings of the night—
Heaps of that scented grass whose bands
Have all been wove by pious hands,
Or wreaths, where fragrantly combined,
Red and white lotus flowers are twined.
And on the deep blue waters float
Many a cocoa-nut's small boat,

Holding within the lamp which bears
The maiden's dearest hopes and prayers,
Watch'd far as ever eye can see,
A vain but tender augury.
Alas! this world is not his home,
And still love trusts that signs will come
From his own native world of bliss,
To guide him through the shades of this.
Dreams, omens, he delights in these,
For love is linked with fantasies,
But hark! upon the plaining wind
Zilara's music floats again;
That midnight breeze could never find
A meeter echo than that strain,
Sad as the sobbing gale that sweeps
The last sere leaf which autumn keeps,

Yet sweet as when the waters fall
And make some lone glade musical.
'Lady, sweet Lady, song of mine
Was never meant for thee,
I sing but from my heart, and thine—
It cannot beat with me.

'You have not knelt in vain despair,
Beneath a love as vain,
That desperate—that devoted love,
Life never knows again.

'What know you of a weary hope,
The fatal and the fond,
That feels it has no home on earth,
Yet dares not look beyond?

'The bitterness of wasted youth,
Impatient of its tears;
The dreary days, the feverish nights,
The long account of years.

'The vain regret, the dream destroy'd,
The vacancy of heart,
When life's illusions, one by one,
First darken—then depart.

'The vacant heart! ah, worse,—a shrine
For one beloved name:
Kept, not a blessing, but a curse,
Amid remorse and shame.

'To know how deep, how pure, how true
Your early feelings were;
But mock'd, betray'd, disdain'd, and chang'd,
They have but left despair.

'And yet the happy and the young
Bear in their hearts a well
Of gentlest, kindliest sympathy,
Where tears unbidden dwell.

'Then, lady, listen to my lute;
As angels look below,
And e'en in heaven pause to weep
O'er grief they cannot know.'

The song was o'er, but yet the strings
Made melancholy murmurings;
She wandered on from air to air,
Changeful as fancies when they bear
The impress of the various thought,
From memory's twilight caverns brought.
At length, one wild, peculiar chime
Recalled this tale of ancient time.
'There's dust upon the distant wind, and shadow on the skies,
And anxiously the maiden strains her long-expecting eyes
And fancies she can catch the light far flashing from the sword,
And see the silver crescents raised, of him, the Mogul lord.

'She stands upon a lofty tower, and gazes o'er the plain:
Alas! that eyes so beautiful, should turn on heaven in vain.
'Tis but a sudden storm whose weight is darkening on the air,
The lightning sweeps the hill, but shows no coming warriors there.

'Yet crimson as the morning ray, she wears the robe of pride
That binds the gallant Humaioon, a brother, to her side;
His gift, what time around his arm, the glittering band was rolled,
With stars of ev'ry precious stone enwrought in shining gold.
'Bound by the Raki's sacred tie, his ready aid to yield,
Though beauty waited in the bower, and glory in the field:
Why comes he not, that chieftain vow'd, to this her hour of need?
Has honour no devotedness? Has chivalry no speed?

'The Rajpoot's daughter gazes round, she sees the plain afar,
Spread shining to the sun, which lights no trace of coming war.
The very storm has past away, as neither earth nor heaven
One token of their sympathy had to her anguish given.

'And still more hopeless than when last she on their camp looked down,
The foeman's gathered numbers close round the devoted town:
And daily in that fatal trench her chosen soldiers fall,
And spread themselves, a rampart vain, around that ruined wall.

'Her eyes upon her city turn—alas! what can they meet,
But famine, and despair, and death, in every lonely street?
Women and children wander pale, or with despairing eye
Look farewell to their native hearths, and lay them down to die.

'She seeks her palace, where her court collects in mournful bands,
Of maidens who but watch and weep, and wring their weary hands.

One word there came from her white lips, one word, she spoke no more;
But that word was for life and death, the young queen named—the Jojr.

[ the last,
'A wild shriek filled those palace halls—one shriek, it was
All womanish complaint and wail have in its utterance past:
They kneel at Kurnavati's feet, they bathe her hands in tears,
Then hurrying to their task of death, each calm and stern appears.

'There is a mighty cavern close beside the palace gate,
Dark, gloomy temple, meet to make such sacrifice to fate:
There heap they up all precious woods, the sandal and the rose,
While fragrant oils and essences like some sweet river flows.

'And shawls from rich Cashmere, and robes from Dacca's golden loom,
And caskets filled with Orient pearls, or yet more rare perfume:

And lutes and wreaths, all graceful toys, of woman's gentle care,
Are heaped upon that royal pile, the general doom to share.

'But weep for those the human things, so lovely and so young,
The panting hearts which still to life so passionately clung;
Some bound to this dear earth by hope, and some by love's strong thrall,
And yet dishonour's high disdain was paramount with all.

'Her silver robe flowed to her feet, with jewels circled round,
And in her long and raven hair the regal gems were bound;
And diamonds blaze, ruby and pearl were glittering in her zone,
And there, with starry emeralds set, the radiant Kandjar shone.

'The youthful Ranee led the way, while in her glorious eyes
Shone spiritual, the clear deep light, that is in moonlit skies:

Pale and resolved, her noble brow was worthy of a race
Whose proud blood flowed in those blue veins unconscious of disgrace.
'Solemn and slow with mournful chaunt, come that devoted band,
And Kurnavati follows last—the red torch in her hand:
She fires the pile, a death-black smoke mounts from that dreary cave—
Fling back the city gates—the foe, can now find but a grave.

'Hark the fierce music on the wind, the atabal, the gong,
The stem avenger is behind, he has not tarried long:
They brought his summons, though he stood before his plighted bride;
They brought his summons, though he stood in all but victory's pride.

'Yet down he flung the bridal wreath, he left the field unwon,
All that a warrior might achieve, young Humaioon had done,
Too late—he saw the reddening sky, he saw the smoke arise,
A few faint stragglers lived to tell the Ranee's sacrifice.
'But still the monarch held a sword, and had a debt to pay;
Small cause had Buhadour to boast—the triumph of that day:
Again the lone streets flowed with blood, and though too late to save,
Vengeance was the funereal rite at Kurnavati's grave.'

Deep silence chained the listeners round,
When, lo, another plaintive sound,
Came from the river's side, and there
They saw a girl with loosened hair

Seat her beneath a peepul tree,
Where swung her gurrah mournfully,
Filled with the cool and limpid wave,
An offering o'er some dear one's grave.
At once Zilara caught the tone,
And made it, as she sung, her own.
'Oh weep not o'er the quiet grave,
Although the spirit lost be near;
Weep not, for well those phantoms know
How vain the grief above their bier.

Weep not—ah no, 'tis best to die,
Ere all of bloom from life is fled;
Why live, when feelings, friends, and faith
Have long been numbered with the dead?

'They know no rainbow-hope that weeps
Itself away to deepest shade;
Nor love, whose very happiness
Should make the trusting heart afraid.
Ah, human tears are tears of fire,
That scorch and wither as they flow;
Then let them fall for those who live,
And not for those who sleep below.

'Yes, weep for those, whose silver chain
Has long been loosed, and yet live on;
The doomed to drink from life's dark spring,
Whose golden bowl has long been gone.

Aye, weep for those, the weary, worn,
The bound to earth by some vain tie;
Some lingering love, some fond regret,
Who loathe to live, yet fear to die.'

A moment's rest, and then once more
Zilara tried her memory's store,
And woke, while o'er the strings she bowed,
A tale of Rajahstan the proud.
'Bold as the falcon that faces the sun,
Wild as the streams when in torrents they run,

Fierce as the flame when the jungle's on fire,
Are the chieftains who call on the day-star as Sire.
Since the Moghuls were driven from stately Mandoo,
And left but their ruins their reign to renew,
Those hills have paid tribute to no foreign lord,
And their children have kept what they won by the sword.
Yet downcast each forehead, a sullen dismay
At Oudeypoor reigns in the Durbar to-day,
For bootless the struggle, and weary the fight,
Which Adjeit Sing pictures with frown black as night:—

'Oh fatal the hour, when Makundra's dark pass
Saw the blood of our bravest sink red in the grass;
And the gifts which were destined to honour the bride,
By the contest of rivals in crimson were dyed.
Where are the warriors who once wont to stand
The glory and rampart of Rajahstan's land?
Ask of the hills for their young and their brave,
They will point to the valleys beneath as their grave.
The mother sits pale by her desolate hearth,
And weeps o'er the infant an orphan from birth;
While the eldest boy watches the dust on the spear,
Which as yet his weak hand is unable to rear.
The fruit is ungathered, the harvest unsown,
And the vulture exults o'er our fields as his own:
There is famine on earth—there is plague in the air,
And all for a woman whose face is too fair.'
There was silence like that from the tomb, for no sound
Was heard from the chieftains who darkened around,

When the voice of a woman arose in reply,
'The daughters of Rajahstan know how to die.'

'Day breaks, and the earliest glory of morn
Afar o'er the tops of the mountains is borne;
Then the young Kishen Kower wandered through the green bowers,
That sheltered the bloom of the island of flowers;
Where a fair summer palace arose mid the shade,
Which a thousand broad trees for the noon-hour had made
Far around spread the hills with their varying hue,
From the deepest of purple to faintest of blue;
On one side the courts of the Rana are spread,
The white marble studded with granite's deep red;
While far sweeps the terrace, and rises the dome,
Till lost in the pure clouds above like a home.
Beside is a lake covered over with isles,
As the face of a beauty is varied with smiles:

Some small, just a nest for the heron that springs
From the long grass, and flashes the light from its wings;
Some bearing one palm-tree, the stately and fair,
Alone like a column aloft in the air;
While others have shrubs and sweet plants that extend
Their boughs to the stream o'er whose mirror they bend.
The lily that queen-like uprears to the sun,
The loveliest face that his light is upon;
While beside stands the cypress, which darkens the wave
With a foliage meant only to shadow the grave.

But the isle in the midst was the fairest of all
Where ran the carved trellis around the light hall;
Where the green creeper's starry wreaths, scented and bright.
Wooed the small purple doves 'mid their shelter to light;
There the proud oleander with white tufts was hung,
And the fragile clematis its silver showers flung,

And the nutmeg's soft pink was near lost in the pride
Of the pomegranate blossom that blushed at its side.
There the butterflies flitted around on the leaves,
From which every wing its own colour receives;
There the scarlet finch past like a light on the wind,
And the hues of the bayas like sunbeams combined;
Till the dazzled eye sought from such splendours to rove
And rested at last on the soft lilac dove;
Whose song seemed a dirge that at evening should be
Pour'd forth from the height of the sad cypress tree.
Her long dark hair plaited with gold on each braid;
Her feet bound with jewels which flash'd through the shade;
One hand filled with blossoms, pure hyacinth bells
Which treasure the summer's first breath in their cells;
The other caressing her white antelope,
In all the young beauty of life and of hope.
The princess roved onwards, her heart in her eyes,
That sought their delight in the fair earth and skies.

Oh, loveliest time! oh, happiest day!
When the heart is unconscious, and knows not its sway,
When the favourite bird, or the earliest flower,
Or the crouching fawn's eyes, make the joy of the hour,
And the spirits and steps are as light as the sleep
Which never has waken'd to watch or to weep.
She bounds o'er the soft grass, half woman half child,
As gay as her antelope, almost as wild.
The bloom of her cheek is like that on her years;
She has never known pain, she has never known tears,
And thought has no grief, and no fear to impart;
The shadow of Eden is yet on her heart.

'The midnight has fallen, the quiet, the deep,
Yet in yon Zenana none lie down for sleep.
Like frighted birds gathered in timorous bands,
The young slaves within it are wringing their hands.

The mother hath covered her head with her veil,
She weepeth no tears, and she maketh no wail;
But all that lone chamber pass silently by;
She has flung her on earth, to despair and to die.
But a lamp is yet burning in one dismal room,
Young princess; where now is thy morning of bloom?
Ah, ages, long ages, have passed in a breath,
And life's bitter knowledge has heralded death.
At the edge of the musnud she bends on her knee,
While her eyes watch the face of the stern Chand Baee.
Proud, beautiful, fierce; while she gazes, the tone
Of those high murky features grows almost her own;
And the blood of her race rushes dark to her brow,
The spirit of heroes has entered her now.

' 'Bring the death-cup, and never for my sake shall shame
Quell the pride of my house, or dishonour its name.
She drained the sherbet, while Chand Baee looked on,
Like a warrior that marks the career of his son.
But life is so strong in each pure azure vein,
That they take not the venom—she drains it again.
The haughty eye closes, the white teeth are set,
And the dew-damps of pain on the wrung brow are wet:
The slight frame is writhing—she sinks to the ground;
She yields to no struggle, she utters no sound—
The small hands are clenched—they relax—it is past,
And her aunt kneels beside her—kneels weeping at last.
Again morning breaks over palace and lake,
But where are the glad eyes it wont to awake.
Weep, weep, 'mid a bright world of beauty and bloom,
For the sweet human flower that lies low in the tomb.
And wild through the palace the death-song is breathing,
And white are the blossoms, the slaves weep while wreathing,

To strew at the feet and to bind round the head,
Of her who was numbered last night with the dead:
They braid her long tresses, they drop the shroud o'er,
And gaze on her cold and pale beauty no more:
But the heart has her image, and long after-years
Will keep her sad memory with music and tears.'

Days pass, yet still Zilara's song
Beguiled the regal beauty's hours
As the wind bears some bird along
Over the haunted orange bowers.
'Twas as till then she had not known
How much her heart had for its own;
And Murad's image seemed more dear,
These higher chords of feeling strung;
'And love shone brighter for the shade
'That others' sorrows round it flung.

It was one sultry noon, yet sweet
The air which through the matted grass
Came cool—its breezes had to meet
A hundred plumes, ere it could pass;
The peacock's shining feathers wave
From many a young and graceful slave;
Who silent kneel amid the gloom
Of that dim and perfumed room.

Beyond, the radiant sunbeams rest
On many a minaret's glittering crest,
And white the dazzling tombs below,
Like masses sculptured of pure snow;
While round stands many a giant tree,
Like pillars of a sanctuary,
Whose glossy foliage, dark and bright,
Reflects, and yet excludes the light.
Oh sun, how glad thy rays are shed;
How canst thou glory o'er the dead?

Ah, folly this of human pride,
What are the dead to one like thee,
Whose mirror is the mighty tide,
Where time flows to eternity?
A single race, a single age,
What are they in thy pilgrimage?
The tent, the palace, and the tomb
Repeat the universal doom.
Man passes, but upon the plain
Still the sweet seasons hold their reign,
As if earth were their sole domain,
And man a toy and mockery thrown
Upon the world he deems his own.

All is so calm—the sunny air
Has not a current nor a shade;
The vivid green the rice-fields wear
Seems of one moveless emerald made;

The Ganges' quiet waves are rolled
In one broad sheet of molten gold;
And in the tufted brakes beside,
The water-fowls and herons hide.
And the still earth might also seem
The strange creation of a dream.
Actual, breathless—dead, yet bright—
Unblest with life—yet mocked with light,
It mocks our nature's fate and power,
When we look forth in such an hour,
And that repose in nature see,
The fond desire of every heart;
But, oh! thou inner world, to thee,
What outward world can e'er impart?

But turn we to that darkened hall,
Where the cool fountain's pleasant fall

Wakens the odours yet unshed
From the blue hyacinth's drooping head;
And on the crimson couch beside
Reclines the young and royal bride;
Not sleeping, though the water's chime,
The lulling flowers, the languid time,
Might soothe her to the gentlest sleep,
O'er which the genii watchings keep,
And shed from their enchanted wings,
All loveliest imaginings:
No, there is murmuring in her ear,
A voice than sleep's more soft and dear;
While that pale slave with drooping eye
Speaks mournfully of days gone by;
And every plaintive word is fraught
With music which the heart has taught,
A pleading and confiding tone,
To those mute lips so long unknown.

Ah! all in vain that she had said
To feeling, 'slumber like the dead;'
Had bade each pang that might convulse
With fiery throb the beating pulse,
Each faded hope, each early dream,
Sleep as beneath a frozen stream;
Such as her native mountains bear,
The cold white hills around Jerdair;
Heights clad with that eternal snow,
Which happier valleys never know.
Some star in that ungenial sky,
Might well shape such a destiny;
But till within the dark calm grave,
There yet will run an under-wave,
Which human sympathy can still
Excite and melt to tears at will;
No magic any spell affords,
Whose power is like a few kind words.

'Twas strange the contrast in the pair,
That leant by that cool fountain's side
Both very young, both very fair,
By nature, not by fate allied:
The one a darling and delight,
A creature like the morning bright:
Whose weeping is the sunny shower
Half light upon an April hour;
One who a long glad childhood past,
But left that happy home to 'bide
Where love a deeper shadow cast,
A hero's proud and treasured bride:
Who her light footstep more adored,
Than all the triumphs of his sword;
Whose kingdom at her feet the while,
Had seemed too little for a smile.
But that pale slave was as the tomb
Of her own youth, of her own bloom;

Enough remained to show how fair,
In other days those features were,
Still lingered delicate and fine,
The shadow of their pure outline;
The small curved lip, the glossy brow,
That melancholy beauty wore,
Whose spell is in the silent past,
Which saith to love and hope, 'No more:'
No more, for hope hath long forsaken
Love, though at first its gentle guide
First lulled to sleep, then left to 'waken,
'Mid tears and scorn, despair and pride,
And only those who know can tell,
What love is after hope's farewell.
And first she spoke of childhood's time,
Little, what childhood ought to be,
When tenderly the gentle child
Is cherished at its mother's knee,

Who deems that ne'er before, from heaven
So sweet a thing to earth was given.
But she an orphan had no share
In fond affection's early care;
She knew not love until it came
Far other, though it bore that name.

'I felt,' she said, 'all things grow bright!
Before the spirit's inward light.
Earth was more lovely, night and day,
Conscious of some enchanted sway,
That flung around an atmosphere
I had not deemed could brighten here.
And I have gazed on Moohreeb's face,
As exiles watch their native place;
I knew his step before it stirred
From its green nest the cautious bird.

I woke, till eye and cheek grew dim,
Then slept—it was to dream of him;
I lived for days upon a word
Less watchful ear had never heard:
And won from careless look or sign
A happiness too dearly mine.
He was my world—I wished to make
My heart a temple for his sake.
It matters not—such passionate love
Has only life and hope above;
A wanderer from its home on high,
Here it is sent to droop and die.
He loved me not—or but a day,
I was a flower upon his way:
A moment near his heart enshrined,
Then flung to perish on the wind.'

She hid her face within her hands—
Methinks the maiden well might weep;
The heart it has a weary task
Which unrequited love must keep;
At once a treasure and a curse,
The shadow on its universe.
Alas, for young and wasted years,
For long nights only spent in tears;
For hopes, like lamps in some dim urn,
That but for the departed burn.
Alas for her whose drooping brow
Scarce struggles with its sorrow now.
At first Nadira wept to see
That hopelessness of misery.
But, oh, she was too glad, too young,
To dream of an eternal grief;
A thousand thoughts within her sprung,
Of solace, promise, and relief.

Slowly Zilara raised her head,
Then, moved by some strong feeling, said,
'A boon, kind Princess, there is one
Which won by me, were heaven won;
Not wealth, not freedom—wealth to me
Is worthless, as all wealth must be;
When there are none its gifts to share:
For whom have I on earth to care?
None from whose head its golden shrine
May ward the ills that fell on mine.
And freedom—'tis a worthless boon
To one who will be free so soon;
And yet I have one prayer, so dear,
I dare not hope—I only fear.'
'Speak, trembler, be your wish confest,
And trust Nadira with the rest.'
'Lady, look forth on yonder tower,
There spend I morn and midnight's hour,

Beneath that lonely peepul tree—
Well may its branches wave o'er me,
For their dark wreaths are ever shed,
The mournful tribute to the dead—
There sit I, in fond wish to cheer
A captive's sad and lonely ear,
And strive his drooping hopes to raise,
With songs that breathe of happier days.
Lady, methinks I scarce need tell
The name that I have loved so well;
'Tis Moohreeb, captured by the sword
Of him, thy own unconquered lord.
Lady, one word—one look from thee,
And Murad sets that captive free.'

'And you will follow at his side?'
'Ah, no, he hath another bride;
And if I pity, can'st thou bear
To think upon her lone despair?
No, break the mountain-chieftain's chain,
Give him to hope, home, love again.'
Her cheek with former beauty blushed,
The crimson to her forehead rushed,
Her eyes rekindled, till their light
Flashed from the lash's summer night.
So eager was her prayer, so strong
The love that bore her soul along.
Ah! many loves for many hearts;
But if mortality has known
One which its native heaven imparts
To that fine soil where it has grown;
'Tis in that first and early feeling,
Passion's most spiritual revealing;

Half dream, all poetry—whose hope
Colours life's charmed horoscope
With hues so beautiful, so pure—
Whose nature is not to endure.
As well expect the tints to last,
The rainbow on the storm hath cast.
Of all young feelings, love first dies,
Soon the world piles its obsequies;
Yet there have been who still would keep
That early vision dear and deep,
The wretched they, but love requires
Tears, tears to keep alive his fires:
The happy will forget, but those
To whom despair denies repose,
From whom all future light is gone,
The sad, the slighted, still love on.

The ghurrees are chiming the morning hour,
The voice of the priest is heard from the tower,
The turrets of Delhi are white in the sun,
Alas! that another bright day has begun.
Children of earth, ah! how can ye bear
This constant awakening to toil and to care?
Out upon morning, its hours recall,
Earth to its trouble, man to his thrall;
Out upon morning, it chases the night,
With all the sweet dreams that on slumber alight;
Out upon morning, which wakes us to life,
With its toil, its repining, its sorrow and strife.
And yet there were many in Delhi that day,
Who watched the first light, and rejoiced in the ray;

They wait their young monarch, who comes from the field
With a wreath on his spear, and a dent on his shield.
There's a throng in the east, 'tis the king and his train:
And first prance the horsemen, who scarce can restrain
Their steeds that are wild as the wind, and as bold
As the riders who curb them with bridles of gold:
The elephants follow, and o'er each proud head
The chattah that glitters with gems is outspread,
Whence the silver bells fall with their musical sound,
While the howdah's red trappings float bright on the ground:
Behind stalk the camels, which, weary and worn,
Seem to stretch their long necks, and repine at the morn:
And wild on the air the fierce war-echoes come,
The voice of the atabal, trumpet, and drum:

Half lost in the shout that ascends from the crowd,
Who delight in the young, and the brave, and the proud.
Tis folly to talk of the right and the wrong,
The triumph will carry the many along.
A dearer welcome far remains,
Than that of Delhi's crowded plains?
Soon Murad seeks the shadowy hall,
Cool with the fountain's languid fall;
His own, his best beloved to meet.
Why kneels Nadira at his feet?
With flushing cheek, and eager air,
One word hath won her easy prayer;
It is such happiness to grant,
The slightest fancy that can haunt
The loved one's wish, earth hath no gem,
And heaven no hope, too dear for them.
That night beheld a vessel glide,
Over the Jumna's onward tide;

One watched that vessel from the shore,
Too conscious of the freight it bore,
And wretched in her granted vow,
Sees Moohreeb leaning by the prow,
And knows that soon the winding river
Will hide him from her view for ever.

Next morn they found that youthful slave
Still kneeling by the sacred wave;
Her head was leaning on the stone
Of an old ruined tomb beside,
A fitting pillow cold and lone,
The dead had to the dead supplied:
The heart's last string hath snapt in twain,
Oh, earth, receive thine own again:
The weary one at length has rest
Within thy chill but quiet breast.

Long did the young Nadira keep
The memory of that maiden's lute;
And call to mind her songs, and weep,
Long after those charmed chords were mute.
A small white tomb was raised, to show
That human sorrow slept below;
And solemn verse and sacred line
Were graved on that funereal shrine.
And by its side the cypress tree
Stood, like unchanging memory.
And even to this hour are thrown
Green wreaths on that remembered stone;
And songs remain, whose tunes are fraught
With music which herself first taught.
And, it is said, one lonely star
Still brings a murmur sweet and far
Upon the silent midnight air,
As if Zilara wandered there.

Oh! if her poet soul be blent
With its aerial element,
May its lone course be where the rill
Goes singing at its own glad will;
Where early flowers unclose and die;
Where shells beside the ocean lie,
Fill'd with strange tones; or where the breeze
Sheds odours o'er the moonlit seas:
There let her gentle spirit rove,
Embalmed by poetry and love.

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John Dryden

Absalom and Achitophel

In pious times, e'er Priest-craft did begin,
Before Polygamy was made a sin;
When man, on many, multiply'd his kind,
E'r one to one was, cursedly, confind:
When Nature prompted, and no law deny'd
Promiscuous use of Concubine and Bride;
Then, Israel's monarch, after Heaven's own heart,
His vigorous warmth did, variously, impart
To Wives and Slaves; And, wide as his Command,
Scatter'd his Maker's Image through the Land.
Michal, of Royal blood, the Crown did wear,
A Soyl ungratefull to the Tiller's care;
Not so the rest; for several Mothers bore
To Godlike David, several Sons before.
But since like slaves his bed they did ascend,
No True Succession could their seed attend.
Of all this Numerous Progeny was none
So Beautifull, so brave as Absalon:
Whether, inspir'd by some diviner Lust,
His father got him with a greater Gust;
Or that his Conscious destiny made way
By manly beauty to Imperiall sway.
Early in Foreign fields he won Renown,
With Kings and States ally'd to Israel's Crown
In Peace the thoughts of War he could remove,
And seem'd as he were only born for love.
What e'er he did was done with so much ease,
In him alone, 'twas Natural to please.
His motions all accompanied with grace;
And Paradise was open'd in his face.
With secret Joy, indulgent David view'd
His Youthfull Image in his Son renew'd:
To all his wishes Nothing he deny'd,
And made the Charming Annabel his Bride.
What faults he had (for who from faults is free?)
His Father could not, or he would not see.
Some warm excesses, which the Law forbore,
Were constru'd Youth that purg'd by boyling o'r:
And Amnon's Murther, by a specious Name,
Was call'd a Just Revenge for injur'd Fame.
Thus Prais'd, and Lov'd, the Noble Youth remain'd,
While David, undisturb'd, in Sion raign'd.
But Life can never be sincerely blest:
Heaven punishes the bad, and proves the best.
The Jews, a Headstrong, Moody, Murmuring race,
As ever try'd th' extent and stretch of grace;
God's pamper'd people whom, debauch'd with ease,
No King could govern, nor no God could please;
(Gods they had tri'd of every shape and size
That Gods-smiths could produce, or Priests devise.)
These Adam-wits too fortunately free,
Began to dream they wanted libertie;
And when no rule, no precedent was found
Of men, by Laws less circumscrib'd and bound,
They led their wild desires to Woods and Caves,
And thought that all but Savages were Slaves.
They who when Saul was dead, without a blow,
Made foolish Ishbosheth the Crown forgo;
Who banisht David did from Hebron bring,
And with a Generall Shout, proclaim'd him King:
Those very Jewes, who, at their very best,
Their Humour more than Loyalty exprest,
Now wondred why, so long, they had obey'd
An Idoll Monarch which their hands had made:
Thought they might ruine him they could create;
Or melt him to that Golden Calf, a State,
But these were randome bolts: No form'd Design,
Nor Interest made the Factious Croud to joyn:
The sober part of Israel, free from stain,
Well knew the value of a peacefull raign:
And, looking backward with a wise afright,
Saw Seames of wounds, dishonest to the sight;
In contemplation of whose ugly Scars,
They Curst the memory of Civil Wars.
The moderate sort of Men, thus qualifi'd,
Inclin'd the Ballance to the better side:
And David's mildness manag'd it so well,
The Bad found no occasion to Reb ell.
But, when to Sin our byast Nature leans,
The carefull Devil is still at hand with means;
And providently Pimps for ill desires:
The Good old Cause reviv'd, a Plot requires.
Plots, true or false, are necessary things,
To raise up Common-wealths, and ruin Kings.

Th' inhabitants of old Jerusalem
Were Jebusites: the Town so call'd from them;
And theirs' the Native right-
But when the chosen people grew more strong,
The rightfull cause at length became the wrong:
And every loss the men of Jebus bore,
They still were thought God's enemies the more.
Thus, worn and weaken'd, well or ill content,
Submit they must to David's Government:
Impoverist, and depriv'd of all Command,
Their Taxes doubled as they lost their Land,
And what was harder yet to flesh and blood,
Their Gods disgrac'd, and burnt like common wood.
This set the Heathen Priesthood in a flame;
For Priests of all Religions are the same:
Of whatsoe'r descent their Godhead be,
Stock, Stone, or other homely pedigree,
In his defence his Servants are as bold
As if he had been born of beaten gold.
The Jewish Rabbins tho their Enemies,
In this conclude them honest men and wise;
For 'twas their duty, all the Learned think,
T' espouse his Cause by whom they eat and drink.
From hence began that Plot, the Nation's Curse,
Bad in it self, but represented worse,
Rais'd in extremes, and in extremes decry'd;
With Oaths affirm'd, with dying Vows deny'd,
Not weigh'd, or winnow'd by the Multitude;
But swallow'd in the Mass, unchew'd and Crude.
Some Truth there was, but dash'd and brew'd with Lyes;
To please the Fools, and puzzle all the Wise.
Succeeding times did equal folly call,
Believing nothing, or believing all.
Th' Egyptian Rites the Jebusites imbrac'd;
Where Gods were recommended by their Tast.
Such savory Deities must needs be good,
As serv'd t once for Worship and for Food.
By force they could not Introduce these Gods,
For Ten to One, in former days was odds.
So Fraud was us'd, (the Scrificers trade,)
Fools are more hard to Conquer than Perswade.
Their busie Teachers mingled with the Jews;
And rak'd, for Converts, even the Court and Stews;
Which Hebrew Priests the more unkindly took,
Because the Fleece accompanies the Flock.
Some thought they God's anointed meant to Slay
By Guns, invented since full many a day:
Our Authour swears it not; but who can know
How far the Devil and Jebusites may go?
This Plot, which fail'd for want of common Sense,
Had yet a deep and dangerous Consequence:
For, as when raging Fevers boyl the Blood,
The standing Lake soon floats into a Flood;
And every hostile Humour, which before
Slept quiet in its Channels, bubbles o'er:
So, several Factions from this first Ferment,
Work up to Foam, and threat the Government.
Some by their Friends, more by themselves thought wise,
Oppos'd the Power, to which they could not rise.
Some had in Courts been Great, and thrown from thence,
Like Feinds, were harden'd in Impenitence.
Some by their Monarch's fatal mercy grown,
From Pardon'd Rebels, Kinsmen to the Throne;
Were rais'd in Power and publick Office high:
Strong Bands, if Bands ungratefull men could tye.

Of these the false Achitophel was first:
A Name to all succeeding Ages Curst.
For close Designs, and crooked Counsels fit;
Sagacious, Bold, and Turbulent of wit:
Restless, unfixt in Principles and Place;
In Power unpleas'd, impatient of Disgrace.
A fiery Soul, which working out its way,
Fretted the Pigmy Body to decay:
And o'r inform'd the Tenement of Clay.
A daring Pilot in extremity;
Pleas'd with the Danger, when the Waves went high
He sought the Storms; but for a Calm unfit
Would Steer too night the Sands, to boast his Wit.
Great Wits are sure to Madness near ally'd;
And thin Partitions do their Bounds divide;
Else, why should he, with Wealth and Honour blest,
Refuse his Age the needful hours of Rest?
Punish a Body which he could not please;
Bankrupt of Life, yet Prodigal of Ease?
And all to leave, what with his Toyl he won,
To that unfeather'd, two Leg'd thing, a Son;
Got, while his Sould did hudled Notions try;
And born a shapeless Lump, like Anarchy.
In Friendship False, Implacable in Hate:
Resolv'd to Ruine or to Rule the State.
To Compass this the Triple Bond he broke;
The Pillars of the publick Safety shok;
And fitted Israel for a foreign Yoke.
Then, seiz'd with Fear, yet still affecting Fame,
Usurp'd a Patriott's All-attoning Name.
So easie still it proves in Factious Times,
With publick Zeal to cancel private Crimes.
How safe is Treason, and how sacred ill,
Where none can sin against the Peoples Will:
Where Crouds can wink; and no offence be known,
Since in anothers guilt they find their own.
Yet, Fame deserv'd, no Enemy can grudge;
The Statesman we abhor, but praise the Judge.
In Israels Courts ne'r sat an Abbethdin
With more discerning Eyes, or Hands more clean;
Unbrib'd, unsought, the Wretched to redress;
Swift of Dispatch, and easie of Access.
Oh, had he been content to serve the Crown,
With vertues only proper to the Gown;
Or, had the rankness of the Soyl been freed
From Cockle, that opprest the Noble seed;
David, for him his tunefull Harp had strung,
And Heaven had wanted one immortal song.
But wide Ambition loves to slide, not stand;
And Fortunes Ice prefers to Vertues Land:
Achitophel, grown weary to possess
A lawfull Fame, and lazy Happiness;
Disdain'd the Golden fruit to gather free,
And lent the Croud his Arm to shake the Tree.
Now, manifest of Crimes, contriv'd long since,
He stood at bold Defiance with his Prince;
Held up the Buckler of the Peoples Cause,
Against the Crown; and sculk'd behind the Laws.
The wish'd occasion of the Plot he takes,
Some Circumstances finds, but more he makes.
By buzzing Emissaries, fills the ears
Of listning Crowds, with Jealosies and Fears
Of Arbitrary COunsels brought to light,
And proves the King himself a Jebusite.
Weak Arguments! which yet he knew fulwell,
Were strong with People easie to Rebell.
For, govern'd by the Moon, the giddy Jews
Tread the same track when she the Prime renews:
And once in twenty Years, their Scribes Record,
By natural Instinct they change their Lord.
Achitophel still wants a Chief, and none
Was found so fit as Warlike Absalon:
Not that he wished his Greatness to create,
(For Polititians neither love nor hate).
Bur, for he knew, his Title not allow'd,
Would keep him still depending on the Crowd:
That Kingly power, thus ebbing out, might be
Drawn to the dregs of a Democracy.
Him he attempts, with studied Arts to please,
And sheds his Venome, in such words as these.

Auspicious Prince! at whose Nativity
Some Royal Planet rul'd the Southern sky;
Thy longing Countries Darling and Desire;
Their cloudy Pillar, and their guardian Fire:
Their Second Moses, whose extended Wand
Divides the Seas, and shews the promis'd Land:
Whose dawning Day, in every distant age,
Has exercis'd the Sacred Prophets rage:
The Peoples Prayer, the glad Diviners Theam,
The Young-mens Vision, and the Old mens Dream!
Thee, Saviour, Thee, the Nations Vows confess;
And, never satisfi'd with seeing, bless:
Swift, undespoken Pomps, they steps proclaim,
And stemmerring Babes are taught to lisp thy Name.
How long wilt thou the general Joy detain;
Starve, and defraud the People of thy Reign?
Content ingloriously to pass they days
Like one of Vertues Fools that feeds on Praise;
Till thy fresh Glories, which now shine so bright,
Grow Stale and Tarnish with our daily sight.
Believe me, Royal Youth, thy Fruit must be,
Or gather'd Ripe, or rot upon the Tree.
Heav'n has to all alloted, soon or late,
Some lucky Revolution of their Fate;
Whose Motions, if we watch and guide with Skill,
(For humane Good depends on humane Will,)
Our Fortune rolls, as from a smooth Descent,
And, from the first Impression, takes the Bent;
But, if unseiz'd, she glides away like wind;
And leaves repenting Folly far behind.
Now, now she meets you, with a glorious prize,
And spreads her Locks before her as she flies.
Had thus Old David, from whose Loyns you spring,
Not dar'd, when Fortune call'd him, to be King,
At Gath an Exile he might still remain,
And heavens Anointing Oyle had been in vain.
Let his successfull Youth your hopes engage,
But shun th' example of Declining Age:
Behold him setting in his Western Skies,
The Shadows lengthening as the Vapours rise.
He is not now, as when on Jordan's Sand
The Joyfull People throng'd to see him Land,
Cov'ring all the Beach, and blackning all the Strand;
But, like the Prince of Angels from his height,
Comes tumbling downward with diminsh'd light;
Betray'd by one poor Plot to publick Scorn,
(Our only blessing since his Curst Return).
Those heaps of People which one Sheaf did bind,
Blown off and scatter'd by a Puff of WInd.
What strength can he to y0our Designs oppose,
Naked of Friends, and round beset with Foes?
If Pharoah's doubtfull Succour he shoud use,
A Foreign Aid would more incense the Jews.
Proud Egypt would dissembled Friendship bring;
Foment the War, but not support the King:
Nor would the Royal Party e'r unite
With Pharoah's Arms, t' assist the Jebusite;
Or if they shoud, their Interest soon woud break,
And with such odious Aid make David weak.
All sorts of men by my successfull Arts,
Abhorring Kings, estrange their alter'd Hearts
From David's Rule: And 'tis the general Cry,
Religion, Common-wealth, and Liberty.
If you as Champion of the publique Good,
Add to their Arms a Chief of Royal BLood;
What may not Israel hope, and what Applause
Might such a General gain by such a Cause?
Not barren Praise alone, that Gaudy Flower,
Fair only to the sight, but solid Power:
And Nobler is a limited Command,
Giv'n by the Love of all your Native Land,
Than a Successive Title, Long, and Dark,
Drawn from the Mouldy rolls of Noah's Ark.

What cannot Praise effect in Mighty Minds,
When Flattery Sooths, and when Ambition Blinds!
Desire of Power, on Earth a Vitious Weed,
Yet, sprung from High, is of Cælestial Seed:
In God 'tis Glory: And when men Aspire,
'Tis but a Spark too much of Heavenly Fire.
Th'Ambitious Youth, too covetous of Fame,
Too full of Angells Metal in his Frame,
Unwarily was led from Vertues ways;
Made Drunk with Honour, and Debauch'd with Praise.
Half loath, and half consenting to the Ill,
(For Loyal Blood within him strugled still)
He thus reply'd - And what Pretence have I
To take up Arms for Publick Liberty?
My Father Governs with unquestion'd Right;
The Faiths Defender, and Mankinds Delight:
Good, Gracious, Just, observant of the Laws;
And Heav'n by Wonders has Espous'd his Cause.
Whom has he Wrong'd in all his Peaceful Reign?
Who sues for Justice to his Throne in Vain?
What Millions has he Pardon'd of his Foes,
Whom Just Revenge did to his Wrath expose?
Mild, Easy, Humble, Studious of our Good;
Enclin'd to Mercy, and averse from Blood.
If Mildness Ill with Stubborn Israel Suite,
His Crime is God's beloved Attribute.
What could he gain, his People to Betray,
Or change his Right, for Aribtrary Sway?
Let Haughty Pharoah Curse with such a Reign,
His Fruitfull Nile, nad Yoak a Servile Train.
If David'd Rule Jerusalem Displease,
The Dog-star heats their Brains to this Disease.
Why then should I, Encouraging the Bad,
Turn Rebell, and run Popularly Mad?
Were he a Tyrant who, by Lawless Might,
Opprest the Jews, and Rais'd the Jebusite,
Well might I Mourn; but Natures Holy Bands
Would Curb my Spirits, and Restrain my Hands:
The People might assert their Liberty;
But what was Right in them, were Crime in me.
His Favour leaves me nothing to require;
Prevents my WIshes, and outruns Desire.
What more can I expect while David lives,
All but his Kingly Diadem he gives;
And that: But there he Paus'd; then Sighing, said,
Is Justly Destin'd for a Worthier Head.
For when my Father from his Toyls shall Rest,
And late Augment the Number of the Blest:
His Lawfull Issue shall the Throne ascend,
Or the Collateral Line where that shall end.
His Brother, though Opprest with Vulgar Spright,
Yet Dauntless and Secure of Native Right,
Of every Royal Vertue stands possest;
Still Dear to all the Bravest, and the Best.
His Courage Foes, his Friends his Truth Proclaim;
His Loyalty the King, the World his Fame.
His Mercy even th'Offending Crowd will find,
For sure he comes of a Forgiving Kind.
Why should I then Repine at Heavens Decree;
Which gives me no Pretence to Royalty?
Yet oh that Fate Propitiously Enclind,
Had rais'd my Birth, or had debas'd my Mind;
To my large Soul, not all her Treasure lent,
And then Betray'd it to a mean Descent.
I find, I find my mounting Spirits Bold,
And David's Part disdains my Mothers Mold.
Why am I Scanted by a Niggard Birth,,
My Soul Disclaims the Kindred of her Earth:
And made for Empire, Whispers me within;
Desire of Greatness is a Godlike Sin.

Him Staggering so when Hells dire Agent found,
While fainting Vertue scarce maintain'd her Ground,
He pours fresh Forces in, and thus Replies:

Th'Eternal God Supreamly Good and Wise,
Imparts not these Prodigiuos Gifts in vain;
What Wonders are Reserv'd to bless your Reign?
Against your will your Arguments have shown,
Such Vertue's only given to guide a Throne.
Not that your Father's Mildness I contemn;
But Manly Force becomes the Diadem.
'Tis true, he grants the People all they crave;
And more perhaps than Subjects ought to have:
For Lavish grants suppose a Monarch tame,
And more his Goodness than his Wit proclaim.
But when shoud People strive their Bonds to break,
If not when Kings are Negligent or Weak?
Let him give on till he can give no more,
The Thrifty Sanhedrin shall keep him poor:
And every Sheckle which he can receive,
Shall cost a Limb of his Prerogative.
To ply him wiht new Plots, shall be my care,
Or plunge him deep in some Expensive War;
Which when his Treasure can no more Supply,
He must, with the Remains of Kingship, buy.
His faithful Friends, our Jealousies and Fears,
Call Jebusites; and Pharaoh's Pentioners:
Whom, when our Fury from his Aid has torn,
He shall be Naked left to publick Scorn.
The next Successor, whom I fear and hate,
My Arts have made Obnoxious to the State;
Turn'd all his Vertues to his Overthrow,
And gain'd our Elders to pronouce a Foe.
His Right, for Sums of necessary Gold,
Shall first be Pawn'd, and afterwards be Sold:
Till time shall Ever-wanting David draw,
To pass your doubtfull Title into Law:
If not; the People have a Right Supreme
To make their Kings; for Kings are made for them.
All Empire is no more than Pow'r in Trust,
Which when resum'd, can be no longer Just.
Succession, for the general Good design'd,
In its own wrong a Nation cannot bind:
If alterning that, the People can relieve,
Better one Suffer, than a Nation grieve.
The Jews well know their power: e'r Saul they Chose,
God was their King, and God they durst Depose.
Urge now your Piety, your Filial Name,
A Father's Right, and fear of future Fame;
The publick Good, that Universal Call,
To which even Heav'n Submitted, answers all.
Nor let his Love Enchant your generous Mind;
'Tis Natures trick to Propogate her Kind.
Our fond Begetters, who would never dye,
Love but themselves in their Posterity.
Or let his Kindness by th'Effects by try'd,
Or let him lay his vain Pretence aside.
God said he lov'd your Father; coud he bring
A better Proof, than to Anoint him King?
It surely shew'd he lov'd the Shepherd well,
Who gave so fair a flock as Israel.
Would David have you thought his Darling Son?
What means he then, to Alienate the Crown?
The name of Godly he may blush to hear:
'Tis after God's own heart to Cheat his Heir.
He to his Brother gives Supreme Command;
To you a Legacy of Barren Land:
Perhaps th'old Harp, on which he thrums his Layes:
Or some dull Hebrew Ballad in your Praise.
Then the next Heir, a Prince, Severe and Wise,
Already looks on you with Jealous Eyes;
Sees through the thin Disguises of your Arts,
And markes your Progress in the Peoples Hearts.
Though now his mighty Soul its Grief contains;
He meditates Revenge who least Complains.
And like a Lyon, Slumbring in the way,
Or Sleep-dissembling, while he waits his Prey,
His fearless Foes within his Distance draws;
Constrains his Roaring, and Contracts his Paws;
Till at the last, his time for Fury found,
He shoots with suddain Vengeance from the Ground:
The Prostrate Vulgar, passes o'r, and Spares;
But with a Lordly Rage, his Hunters teares.
Your Case no tame Expedients will afford;
Resolve on Death, or Conquest by the Sword,
Which for no less a Stake than Life, you Draw;
And Self-defence is Natures Eldest Law.
Leave the warm People no Considering time;
For then Rebellion may be thought a Crime.
Prevail your self of what Occasion gives,
But try your Title while your Father lives;
And that your Arms may have a fair Pretence,
Proclaim, you take them in the King's Defence:
Whose Sacred Life each minute woud Expose,
To Plots, from seeming Friends, and secret Foes.
And who can sound the depth of David's Soul?
Perhaps his fear, his kindness may Controul.
He fears his Brother, though he loves his Son,
For plighted Vows too late to be undone.
If so, by Force he wishes to be gain'd,
Like womens Leachery, to seem Constrain'd:
Doubt not, but when he most affects the Frown,
Commit a pleasing Rape upon the Crown.
Secure his Person to secure your Cause;
They who possess the Prince, possess the Laws.

He said, And this Advice above the rest,
With Absalom's Mild nature suited best;
Unblam'd of Life (Ambition set aside,)
Not stain'd with Cruelty, nor puft with Pride;
How happy had he been, if Destiny
Had higher plac'd his Birth, or not so high!
His Kingly vertues might have claim'd a Throne,
And blest all other Countries but his own:
But charming Greatness, since so few refuse;
'Tis Juster to Lament him, than Accuse.
Strong were his hopes a Rival to remove,
With blandishment to gain the publick Love;
To Head the Faction while their Zeal was hot,
And Popularly prosecute the Plot.
To farther this Achithphel Unites
The Malecontents of all the Israelites;
Whose differing Parties he could wisely Joyn,
For several Ends, to serve the same Design.
The Best, and of the Princes some were such,
Who thought the power of Monarchy too much:
Mistaken Men, and Patriots in their Hearts;
Not Wicked, but Seduc'd by Impious Arts.
By these the Springs of Property were bent,
And wound so high, they Crack'd the Government.
The next for Interest sought t'embroil the State,
TO sell their Duty at a dearer rate;
And make their Jewish Markets of the Throne,
Pretending puclick Good, to serve their own.
Others thought Kings an useless heavy Load,
Who Cost too much, and did too little Good.
These were for laying Honest David by,
On Principles of pure good Husbandry.
With them Joyn'd all th' Haranguers of the Throng,
That thought to get Preferment by the Tongue.
Who follows next, a double Danger bring,
Not only hating David, but the King,
The Solymæan Rout; well Verst of old,
In Godly Faction, and in Treason bold;
Cowring and Quaking at a Conqueror's Sword,
But Lofty to a Lawfull Prince Restor'd;
Saw with Disdain an Ethnick Plot begun,
And Scorn'd by Jebusites to be Out-done.
Hot Levites Headed these; who pul'd before
From the Ark, which in the Judges days they bore,
Resum'd their Cant, and with a Zealous Cry,
Pursu'd their old belov'd Theocracy.
Where Sanhedrin and Priest inslav'd the Nation,
And justifi'd their Spoils by Inspiration;
For who so fit for Reign as Aarons's race,
If once Dominion they could found in Grace?
These led the Pack; tho not of surest scent,
Yet deepest mouth'd against the Government.
A numerous Host of dreaming Saints succeed;
Of the true old Enthusiastick breed;
'Gainst Form and Order they their Power employ;
Nothing to Build and all things to Destroy.
But far more numerous was the herd of such,
Who think too little, and who talk too much.
These, out of meer instinct, they knew not why,
Ador'd their fathers God, and Property:
And, by the same blind benefit of Fate,
The Devil and the Jebusite did hate:
Born to be sav'd, even in their own despight;
Because they could not help believing right.
Such were the tools; but a whole Hydra more
Remains, of sprouting heads too long, to score.

Some of their Chiefs were Princes of the Land;
In the first Rank of these did Zimri stand:
A man so various, that he seem'd to be
Not one, but all Mankinds Epitome.
Stiff in Opinions, always in the wrong;
Was every thing by starts, and nothing long:
But in the course of one revolving Moon,
Was Chymist, Fidler, States-Man, and Buffoon:
Then all for Women, Painting, Rhiming, Drinking;
Besides ten thousand freaks that dy'd in thinking.
Blest Madman, who could every hour employ,
With something New to wish, or to enjoy!
Rayling and praising were his usual Theams;
And both (to shew his Judgment) in Exreams:
So over Violent, or over Civil,
That every man, with him, was God or Devil.
In squandring Wealth was his peculiar Art:
Nothing went unrewarded, but Desert.
Begger'd by Fools, whom still he found too late:
He had his Jest, and they had his Estate.
He laught himself from Court, then sought Releif
By forming Parties, but coud ne're be Chief.
For, spight of him, the weight of Business fell
On Absalom and Achitophel:
Thus, wicked but in will, of means bereft,
He left not Faction, but of that was left.

Titles and Names 'twere tedious to Reherse
Of Lords, below the Dignity of Verse.
Wits warriors Common-wealthsmen, were the best:
Kind Husbands and meer Nobles all the rest.
And, therefore in the name of Dulness, be
The well hung Balaam and cold Caleb free.
And canting Nadab let Oblivion damn,
Who made new porridge for the Paschal Lamb.
Let Friendships holy band some Names assure:
Some their own Worth, and some let Scorn secure.
Nor shall the Rascall Rabble here have Place,
Whom Kings no Titles gave, and God no Grace:
Not Bull-fac'd Jonas, who could Statues draw
To mean Rebellion, and make Treason Law.
But he, thos bad, is follow'd by a worse,
The wretch, who Heavens Annointed dar'd to Curse.
Shimei, whose Youth did early Promise bring
Of Zeal to God, and Hatred to his King;
Did wisely from Expensive Sins refrain,
And never broke the Sabbath, but for Gain:
Nor ever was he known an Oath to vent,
Or Curse unless against the Government.
Thus, heaping Wealth, by the most ready way
Among the Jews, which was to Cheat and Pray;
The City, to reward his pious Hate
Against his Master, chose him Magistrate;
His Hand a Vare of Justice did uphold;
His Neck was loaded with Chain of Gold.
During his Office, Treason was no Crime.
The Sons of Belial had a glorious Time:
For Shimei, though not prodigal of pelf,
Yet lov'd his wicked Neighbour as himself:
When two or three were gathere'd to declaim
Against the Monarch of Jerusalem,
Shimei was always in the midst of them.
And, if they Curst the King when he was by,
Would rather Curse, than break good Company.
If any durst his Factious Friends accuse,
He pact a Jury of dissenting Jews:
WHose fellow-feeling, in the godly Cause,
Would free the suffring Saint from Humane Laws.
For Laws are only made to Punish those,
Who serve the King, and to protect his Foes.
If any leisure time he had from Power,
(Because 'tis Sin to misimploy an hour);
His business was, by Writing, to Persuade,
That Kings were Useless, and a Clog to Trade:
And, that his noble Stile he might refine,
No Rechabite more shund the fumes of Wine.
Chaste were his Cellars, and his Shrieval Board
The Grossness of a City Feast abhor'd:
His Cooks, with long disuse, their Trade forgot;
Cool was his Kitchen, tho his Brains were hot.
Such frugal Vertue Malice may accuse,
But sure 'twas necessary to the Jews;
For towns once burnt, such Magistrates require
As dare not tempt Gods Providence by fire.
With Spiritual food he fed his Servants well,
But free from flesh, that made the Jews Rebel:
And Mose's Laws he held in more account,
For forty days of Fasting in the Mount.

To speak the rest, who better are forgot,
Would tyre a well-breath'd Witness of the Plot:
Yet, Corah, thou shalt from Oblivion pass;
Erect thy self thou Monumental Brass:
High as the Serpent of thy mettall made,
While Nations stand secure beneath thy shade.
What tho his Birth were base, yet Comets rise
From Earthy Vapours ere they shine in Skies.
Prodigious Actions may as well be done
By Weavers issue, as by Princes Son.
This Arch-Attestor for the Publick Good,
By that one Deed Enobles all his Bloud.
Who ever ask'd the Witnesses high race,
Whose Oath with Martyrdom did Stephen grace?
Ours was a Levite, and as times went then,
His Tribe were Godalmighty's Gentlemen.
Sunk were his Eyes, his Voyce was harsh and loud,
Sure signs he neither Cholerick was, nor Proud:
His long Chin prov'd his Wit, his Saintlike Grace
A Church Vermilion, and a Moses's face;
His Memory, miraculously great,
Could Plots, exceeding mans belief, repeat;
Which, therefore cannot be accounted Lies,
For human Wit could never such devise.
Some future Truths are mingled in his Book;
But, where the witness faild, the Prophet Spoke:
Some things like Visionary flights appear;
The Spirit caught him, up, the Lord knows where:
And gave him his Rabinical degree
Unknown to Foreign University.
His Judgment yet his Memory did excel;
Which piec'd his wonderous Evidence so well:
And suited to the temper of the times;
Then groaning under Jebusitick Crimes.
Let Israels foes suspect his heav'nly call,
And rashly judge his Writ Apocryphal;
Our Laws for such affronts have forfeits made:
He takes his life, who takes away his trade.
Were I my self in witness Corahs place,
The wretch who did me such a dire disgrace,
Should whet my memory, though once forgot,
To make him an Appendix of my Plot.
His Zeal to heav'n, made him his Prince despise,
And load his person with indignities:
But Zeal peculiar priviledge affords;
Indulging latitude to deeds and words.
And Corah might for Agag's murther call,
In terms as course as Samuel used to Saul.
What others in his Evidence did Joyn,
(The best that could be had for love or coyn,)
In Corah's own predicament will fall:
For witness is a Common Name to all.

Surrounded thus with Friends of every sort,
Deluded Absalom, forsakes the Court:
Impatient of high hopes, urg'd with renown,
And Fir'd with near possession of a Crown,
Th' admiring Croud are dazled with surprize,
And on his goodly person feed their eyes:
His joy conceal'd, he sets himself to show;
On each side bowing popularly low:
His looks, his gestures, and his words he frames,
And with familiar ease repeats their Names.
Thus, form'd by Nature, furnish'd out with Arts,
He glides unfelt into their secret hearts:
Then with a kind compassionating look,
And sighs, bespeaking pity ere he spoak:
Few words he said; but easy those and fit:
More slow than Hybla drops, and far more sweet.

I mourn, my Countrymen, your lost Estate;
Tho far unable to prevent your fate:
Behold a Banisht man, for your dear cause
Expos'd a prey to Arbitrary laws!
Yet oh! that I alone cou'd be undone,
Cut off from Empire, and no more a Son!
Now all your liberties a spoil are made:
Ægypt and Tyrus intercept your trade,
And Jebusites your Sacred Rites invade.
My Father, whom with reverence yet I name,
Charm'd into Ease, is careless of his Fame:
And, brib'd with petty summs of Forreign Gold,
Is grown in Bathsheba's Embraces old.
Exalts his Enemies, his Friends destroys:
And all his pow'r against himself employs.
He gives, and let him give my right away:
But why should he his own, and yours betray?
He only, he can make the Nation bleed,
And he alone from my revenge is freed.
Take then my tears (with that he wip'd his Eyes)
'Tis all the Aid my present power supplies:
No Court Informer can these Arms accuse,
These Arms may Sons against their Fathers use,
And, tis my wish, the next Successors Reign
May make no other Israelite complain.

Youth, Beauty, Graceful Action, seldom fail:
But Common Interest always will prevail:
And pity never Ceases to be shown
To him, who makes the peoples wrongs his own.
The Croud, (that still believes their Kings oppress)
With lifted hands their young Messiah bless:
Who now begins his Progress to ordain;
With Chariots, Horsmen, and a numerous train:
From East to West his Glories he displaies:
And, like the Sun, the promis'd land survays.
Fame runs before him, as the morning Star;
And shouts of Joy salute him from afar:
Each house receives him as a Guardian God;
And Consecrates the Place of his aboad:
But hospitable treats did most commend
Wise Issachar, his wealthy western friend.
This moving Court, that caught the peoples Eyes,
And seem'd but Pomp, did other ends disguise:
Achitophel had form'd it, with intent
To sound the depths, and fathom where it went:
The Peoples hearts, distinguish Friends from Foes;
And try their strength, before they came to blows:
Yet all was colour'd with a smooth pretence
Of specious love, and duty to their Prince.
Religion, and Redress of Grievances,
Two names, that always cheat and always please,
Are often urg'd; and good King David's life
Indanger'd by a Brother and a Wife.
Thus, in a Pageant Show, a Plot is made;
And Peace it self is War in Masquerade.
Oh foolish Israel! never warn'd by ill,
Still the same baite, and circumvented still!
Did ever men forsake their present ease,
In midst of health Imagine a desease;
Take pains Contingent mischiefs to foresee,
Make Heirs for Monarks, and for God decree?
What shall we think! can People give away
Both for themselves and Sons, their Native sway?
Then they are left Defensless, to the Sword
Of each unbounded Arbitrary Lord:
And Laws are vain, by which we Rights enjoy,
If Kings unquestiond can those laws destroy.
Yet, if the Crowd be Judge of fit and Just,
And Kings are onely Officers in trust,
Then this resuming Cov'nant was declar'd
When Kings were made, or is for ever bard:
If those who give the Scepter, could not tye
By their own deed their own Posterity,
How then coud Adam bind his future Race?
How coud his forfeit on mankind take place?
Or how coud heavnly Justice damn us all,
Who nere consented to our Fathers fall?
Then Kings are slaves to those whom they Command,
And Tenants to their Peoples pleasure stand.
Add, that the Pow'r for Property allowd,
Is mischeivously seated in the Crowd:
For who can be secure of private Right,
If Sovereign sway may be dissolv'd by might?
Nor is the Peoples Judgment always true:
The most may err as grosly as the few.
And faultless Kings run down, by Common Cry,
For Vice, Oppression, and Tyranny.
What Standard is there in a fickle rout,
Which, flowing to the mark, runs faster out?
Nor only Crowds, but Sanherins may be
Infected with the publick Lunacy:
And Share the madness of Rebellious times,
To Murther Monarchs for Imagin'd crimes.
If they may Give and Take when e'r they please,
Not Kings alone, (the Godheads Images,)
But Government it self at length must fall
To Natures state; where all have Right to all.
Yet, grant our Lords the People Kings can make,
What Prudent men a setled Throne would shake?
For whatsoe'r their Sufferings were before,
That Change they Covet makes them suffer more.
All other Errors but disturb a State,
But Innovation is the Blow of Fate.
If ancient Fabricks nod, and threat to fall,
To Patch the Flows, and Buttress up the Wall,
Thus far 'tis Duty; but here fix the Mark:
For all beyond it is to touch our Ark.
To change Foundations, cast the Frame anew,
Is work for Rebels who base Ends pursue:
At once Divine and Humane Laws controul;
And mend the Parts by ruine of the Whole.
The Tampering World is subject to this Curse,
To Physick their Disease into a worse.

Now what Relief can Righteous David bring?
How Fatall 'tis to be too good a King!
Friends he has few, so high the Madness grows;
Who dare be such, must be the Peoples Foes:
Yet some there were, ev'n in the worst of days;
Some let me name, and Naming is to praise.

In this short File Barzillai first appears;
Barzillai crown'd with Honour and with Years:
Long since, the rising Rebells he withstood
In Regions Waste, beyond the Jordans Flood:
Unfortunately Brave to buoy the State;
But sinking underneath his Masters Fate:
In Exile with his Godlike Prince he Mourn'd;
For him he Suffer'd, and with him Return'd.
The Court he practis'd, not the Courtier's art:
Large was his Wealth, but larger was his Heart:
Which, well the Noblest Objects know to choose,
The Fighting Warriour, and Recording Muse.
His Bed coud once a Fruitfull Issue boast:
Now more than half a Father's Name is lost.
His Eldest Hope, with every Grace adorn'd,
By me (so Heav'n will have it) always Mourn'd,
And always honour'd, snatcht in Manhoods prime
By unequal Fates, and Providences crime:
Yet not before the Goal of Honour won,
All parts fulfill'd of Subject and of Son;
Swift was the Race, but short the Time to run.
Oh Narrow Circle, but of Pow'r Divine,
Scanted in Space, but perfect in thy Line!
By Sea, by Land, thy Matchless Worth was known;
Arms thy Delight, and War was all thy Own:
Thy force, Infus'd, the fainting Tyrians prop'd:
And Haughty Pharoah found his Fortune stop'd.
Oh Ancient Honour, Oh Unconquer'd Hand,
Whom Foes unpunish'd never coud withstand!
But Israel was unworthy of thy Name:
Short is the date of all Immoderate Fame.
It looks as Heaven our Ruine had design'd,
And durst not trust thy Fortune and thy Mind.
Now, free from Earth, thy disencumbred Soul
Mounts up, and leaves behind the Clouds and Starry Pole:
From thence thy kindred legions mayst thou bring
To aid the guardian Angel of thy King.
Here stop my Muse, here cease thy painfull flight;
No Pinions can pursue Immortal height:
Tell good Barzillai thou canst sing no more,
And tell thy Soul she should have fled before;
Or fled she with his life, and left this Verse
To hang on her departed Patron's Herse?
Now take thy steepy flight from heaven, and see
If thou canst find on earth another He,
Another he would be too hard to find,
See then whom thou canst see not far behind.
Zadock the Priest, whom, shunning Power and Place,
His lowly mind advanc'd to David's Grace:
With him the Sagan of Jerusalem,
Of hospitable Soul and noble Stem;
Him of the Western dome, whose weighty sense
Flows in fit words and heavenly eloquence.
The Prophets Sons by such example led,
To learning and to Loyalty were bred:
For Colleges on bounteous Kings depend,
And never Rebell was to Arts a friend.
To these succeed the Pillars of the Laws,
Who best cou'd plead and best can judge a Cause.
Next them a train of Loyal Peers ascend:
Sharp judging Adriel the Muses friend,
Himself a Muse-In Sanhedrins debate
True to his Prince; but not a Slave of State.
Whom David's love with Honours did adorn,
That from his disobedient Son were torn.
Jotham of piercing wit and pregnant thought,
Indew'd by nature, and by learning taught
To move Assemblies , who but onely try'd
The worse awhile, then chose the better side;
Nor chose alone, but turn'd the balance too;
So much the weight of one brave man can doe.
Hushai the friend of David in distress,
In publick storms of manly stedfastness;
By foreign treaties he inform'd his Youth;
And join'd experience to his native truth.
His frugal care supply'd the wanting Throne,
Frugal for that, but bounteous of his own:
'Tis easy conduct when Exchequers flow,
But hard the task to manage well the low:
For Soveraign power is too deprest or high,
When Kings are forc'd to sell, or Crowds to buy.
Indulge one labour more my weary Muse,
For Amiel, who can Amiel's praise refuse?
Of ancient race by birth, but nobler yet
In his own worth, and without Title great:
The Sanhedrin long time as chief he rul'd,
Their Reason guided and their Passion coold;
So dexterous was he in the Crown's defence,
So form'd to speak a Loyal Nations Sense,
That as their band was Israel's Tribes in small,
So fit was he to represent them all.
Now rasher Charioteers the Seat ascend,
Whose loose Carriers his steady Skill commennd:
They like th' unequal Ruler of the Day,
Misguide the Seasons and mistake the Way;
While he withdrawn at their mad Labour smiles,
And safe enjoys the Sabbath of his Toyls.

These were the chief, a small but faithful Band
Of Worthies, in the Breach who dar'd to stand,
And tempt th' united Fury of the Land.
With grief they view'd such powerful Engines bent,
To batter down the lawful Government.
A numerous Faction with pretended frights,
In Sanhedrins to plume the Regal Rights.
The true Successour from the Court remov'd:
The Plot, by hireling Witnesses improv'd.
These Ills they saw, and as their Duty bound,
They shew'd the King the danger of the Wound:
That no Concessions from the Throne woud please,
But Lenitives fomented the Disease:
That Absalom, ambitious of the Crown,
Was made the Lure to draw the People down:
That false Achitophel's pernitious Hate,
Had turn'd the Plot to Ruine Church and State:
The Councill violent, the Rabble worse
That Shimei taught Jerusalem to Curse.

With all these loads of Injuries opprest,
And long revolving, in his carefull Breast,
Th' event of things, at last his patience tir'd,
Thus from his Royal Throne by Heav'n inspir'd,
The God-like David spoke: with awfull fear
His Train their Maker in their Master hear.

'Thus long have I, by native mercy sway'd,
My wrongs dissembl'd, my revenge delay'd:
So willing to forgive th' Offending Age,
So much the Father did the King asswage.
But now so far my Clemency they slight,
Th' Offenders question my Forgiving Right.
That one was made for many, they contend;
But 'tis to Rule, for that's a Monarch's End.
They call my tenderness of Blood, my Fear:
Though Manly tempers can the longest bear.
Yet, since they will divert my Native course,
'Tis time to shew I am not Good by Force.
Those heap'd Affronts that haughty Subjects bring,
Are burthens for a Camel, not a King:
Kings are the publick Pillars of the State,
Born to sustain and prop the Nations weight:
If my Young Samson will pretend a Call
To shake the Column, let him share the Fall:
But oh that yet he woud repent and live!
How easie 'tis for Parents to forgive!
With how few Tears a Pardon might be won
From Nature, pleading for a Darling Son!
Poor pitied Youth, by my Paternal care,
Rais'd up to all the Height his Frame coud bear:
Had God ordain'd his fate for Empire born,
He woud have given his Soul another turn:
Gull'd with a Patriots name, whose Modern sense
Is one that woud by Law supplant his Prince:
The Peoples Brave, the Politicians Tool;
Never was Patriot yet, but was a Fool.
Whence comes it that Religion and the Laws
Should more be Absalom's than David's Cause?
His old Instructor, e're he lost his Place,
Was never thought indu'd with so much Grace.
Good Heav'ns, how Faction can a Patriot Paint!
My Rebel ever proves my Peoples Saint:
Would They impose an Heir upon the Throne?
Let Sanhedrins be taught to give their Own.
A King's at least a part of Government,
And mine as requisite as their Consent:
Without my Leave a future King to choose,
Infers a Right the Present to Depose:
True, they Petition me t'approve their Choise,
But Esau's Hands suite ill with Jacob's Voice.
My Pious Subjects for my Safety pray,
Which to Secure they take my Power away.
From Plots and Treasons Heaven preserve my years,
But Save me most from my Petitioners.
Unsatiate as the barren Womb or Grave;
God cannot Grant so much as they can Crave.
What then is left but with a Jealous Eye
To guard the Small remains of Royalty?
The Law shall still direct my peacefull Sway,
And the same Law teach Rebels to Obey:
Votes shall no more Establish'd Pow'r controul,
Such Votes as make a Part exceed the Whole;
No groundlesss Clamours shall my Friends remove,
Nor Crowds have power to Punish e're they Prove:
For Gods, and Godlike Kings their Care express,
Still to Defend their Servants in distress.
Oh that my Power to Saving were confin'd:
Why am I forc'd, like Heaven, against my mind,
To make Examples of another Kind?
Must I at length the Sword of Justice draw?
Oh curst Effects of necessary Law!
How ill my Fear they by my Mercy scan,
Beware the Fury of a Patient Man.
Law they require, let Law then shew her Face;
They coud not be content to look on Grace,
Her hinder parts, but with a daring Eye
To tempt the terror of her Front, and Dye.
To their own arts 'tis Righteously decreed
Those dire Artificers of Death shall bleed.
Against themselves their Witnesses will Swear,
Till Viper-like their Mother Plot they tear:
And suck for Nutriment that bloody gore
Which was their Principle of Life before.
Their Belial with their Belzebub will fight;
Thus on my Foes, my Foes shall do me Right:
Nor doubt th' event; for Factious crowds engage
In their first Onset, all their Brutal Rage;
Then, let 'em take an unresisted Course,
Retire and Traverse, and Delude their Force:
But when they stand all Breathless, urge the fight,
And rise upon 'em with redoubled might:
For Lawfull Pow'r is still Superiour found,
When long driven back, at length it stands the ground.'

He said. Th' Almighty, nodding, gave Consent;
And Peals of Thunder shook the Firmament.
Henceforth a Series of new time began,
The mighty Years in long Procession ran:
Once more the God-like David was Restor'd,
And willing Nations knew their Lawfull Lord.

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