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Thenne I wussche hit weore myn and al the web aftur. Of his leosing I lauhwe,
hit liketh me in myn herte; Ac for his wynnynge I wepe
and weile the tyme. I deme men that don ille and git I do wel worse, For I wolde that vch a wiht
in this world were mi knaue, And who-so hath more thanne I that angrith myn herte. Thus I liue loueles
lyk a luther dogge, That all my breste bolleth for bitter of my galle; May no suger so swete
a-swagen hit vnnethe, Ne no dicpendion
dryne hit from myn herte; Gif schrift schulde hit thenne swopen out
a gret wonder hit were."
Thenne schaltou come to a court cleer as the sonne, The mot is of merci
the maner al abouten, And all the walles beth of wit
to hold wil theroute;
The carnels beth of Cristendam
wher-thorw we moten beo sauet. Alle the houses beoth i-hulet
Then I wish it were mine and all the cloth besides. At his losing I laugh,
it pleaseth me in my heart; And for his winning I weep
and deplore all the time. I condemn men that do ill, and yet I do worse, For I would that every one
THE TOWER OF TRUTH.
halles and chaumbres, With no led bote with loue
as-bretheren-of-o-wombe. The Tour ther treuthe is inne i-set is aboue the sonne;
in this world were my servant, And if any one hath more than I, it grieveth my heart. Thus I live loveless
like a wretched dog, And all my breast swelleth for the bitterness of my gall; No sweet sugar may
scarcely assuage it,
Nor any electuary
drive it from my heart; If confession should sweep it out,
a great wonder it would be."
Then shall you come to a court
And all the walls are of common.
to hold desire thereout;
The battlements are of Christendom the kind1 to save, Buttressed with the faith
through which we may be saved. All the houses are covered
halls and chambers.
With no lead but with loveas-brethren-of-one-birth.
The tower in which Truth is, is set above the sun;
He may do with the day-sterre
thing that he defendeth. Grace hette the gate-ward, a good mon forsothe; His mon hette a-mende-thou, for mony men him knoweth; Tel him this tokene,
for treuthe wot the sothe; “I performede penaunce that the prest me en-ioynede; I am sori for my sunnes
and so schal I euere Whon I thenke ther-on, thaug I weore a pope." Bidde a-mende-thou Meken him to his mayster ones, To wynne vp the wiket-gat that the wey schutte, Tho that Adam and Eue
eeten heore bone;
For he hath the key of the cliket
thaug the kyng slepe. And gif grace the graunte to gon in in this wyse, Thou schalt seo treuthe him-self
sitten in thin herte.
Thenne loke that thou loue him wel and his lawe holde.
Ak ther beoth seuen sustren
that seruen treuthe euere And ben porters at posternes
that to the place longen. That on hette Abstinence
and Humilitie a-nother, Charite and Chastite
beoth tweyne ful choyse maidenes, Pacience and Pees
muche peple helpen, Largesse the ladi
ledeth in ful monye. Bote hose is sib to this sustren
so me god helpe!
Is wonderliche wel-comen and feire vnderfonge. And bote ge ben gibbe
to summe of theos seuene, Hit is ful hard, bi myn hed! eny of ow alle
To gete in-goynge at that gat
"I haue no kun there!" "No," quath an apeward,
"for nout that I knowe!" "I-wis," quath a waferer,
wust I this for sothe, Schulde I neuere forthere a fote for no freres prechinge." "Gus," quath Pers the Ploughmon and prechede hire to goode, "Merci is a mayden ther
and hath miht ouer hem alle; Heo is sib to alle synful men
an hire sone alse;
And thorw the help of hem two (hope thou non other), Thou maigt gete grace ther, so that thou go bi-tyme."
Ete not, ich hote the,
til hunger the take,
And sende the sum of his sauce to sauer the the betere; Keep sum til soper tyme,
and sit thou not to longe; Arys vp ar appetyt
habbe i-geten his fulle. Let not Sir Surfet
sitten at thi bord;
Loue him not, for he is a lechour and likerous of tonge,
And aftur mony metes his maw is a-longet.
THE ADVICE OF HUNGER.
Is wonderfully welcome and fairly received. And except ye be akin
to some of these seven It is full hard, by my head! for any of you all
To get entrance at that gate
unless Grace be the greater. "By Christ," cried a cut-purse,
"I have no kin there!" "No," answered an ape-keeper, "not for anything I know." "Truly," quoth a traveller,
"if I knew this for sure, I would never go forward a foot for any friar's preaching." "Yes," said Piers Ploughman,
and exhorted them to goodness, Mercy is a maiden there, and hath power over them all; She is akin to all sinful men and her son also;
And through the help of these two (hope you for no other), You may obtain grace there, if only you go be-times."
Eat not, I advise thee,
till Hunger takes thee And sends thee some of his sauce, to savor thee the better; Keep some till supper-time,
and sit thou not too long; Arise up ere Appetite has gotten his fill. Let not Sir Surfeit sit at thy board;
Love him not, for he is Lechery and vile of speech,
And after many meals
his stomach is still craving.
The Romaunt of the Rose.
ABOUT the middle of the thirteenth century a Frenchman, a Trouvère named Guillaume de Lorris, began to write a long allegorical poem describing the experiences of a lover. The scene of the poem is the Garden of Delight, and into it are admitted only such characters as Beauty, Pleasure, Jollity, Wealth, Courtesy, Youth, and Love. The Rose is the emblem of Beauty, and the story of the quest of that flower is the “Roman de la Rose." Of the life of Guillaume de Lorris nothing is known, although visitors to the little town of Lorris are still shown an old house in which it is said he was born. Having written 4070 lines of his great allegory, he stopped abruptly. Why he should thus leave his poem incomplete, no one knows. Perhaps death surprised him in the midst of his work. A few lines written as a kind of marginal note by some unknown hand at the end of what he had completeà seem to tell the story:
Cy endroit trespassa Guillaume
Here William died; his song was done.
Of Jean de Meung ("Sir John "), who completed Guillaume de Lorris's work by adding to it 18,002 lines, we know very little more than we do of his predecessor. The towns of Lorris and Meung are both in the valley of the Loire, being not more than forty miles distant from each other. Jean de Meung was a somewhat voluminous writer, and he seems to have been held in some favor at the court of King Philip the Fair. In another work of his he says that "God gave him to serve the greatest people in France." In that part of the "Roman de la Rose" which he wrote he fell far short of Guillaume de Lorris in picturesqueness of description and, if you will, in brilliancy of imagination. But he more than made amends by keeping in touch with the awakening spirit of the times. His part of the poem is satirical, aggressive, fairly alive with the thought of the age. "Jean de Meung," says Walter Besant, "wished, it seems to me, to write a book for the people, to answer their questions, to warn them of dangers before them, and to instruct their ignorance. On the sapless trunk of a dying and passionless allegory he grafts a living branch which shall bear fruit in the years to come. His poem breathes, indeed. Its pulses beat with a warm human life. Its sympathies are with all mankind. The boet has a tear for the poor, naked beggars dying on dung-heaps and in the Hôtel-Dieu, and a lash of scorpions for the Levite who goes by on the other side; he teaches the loveliness of friendship; he catches the wordless complaint of the