Whanne, as treate,

In mie pore mynde, we doe the Godhedde
Botte lette ne wordes, whyche drooric3 mote
ne heare,
placed yn the same.

Adieu untylle anere.

a manne, we Godde and Jesus | Instedde of mountynge on a wynged horse,
[wronge You onn a rouncy dryve ynn dolefull course.
Canynge and I from common course dyssente;
Wee ryde the stede, botte yev to hym the reene;
Ne wylle betweene crased molterynge bookes be-
Botte soare on hyghe, and yn the sonne-bemes
And where wee kenn somme ishad floures be-
We take ytte, and from oulde rouste doe ytte
Wee wylle ne cheynedd to one pasture bee,
Botte sometymes soare 'bove trouthe of hystorie.



STRAUNGE dome ytte ys, that, yn these daies of
Nete butte a bare recytalle can hav place ; [oures,
Nowe shapelie poesie hast loste ytts powers,
And pynant bystorie ys onlie grace;

Saie, Canynge, whatt was vearse yn daies of yore?

Heie pycke up wolsome weedes, ynstedde of Fyne thoughtes, and couplettes fetyvelie bewryen flowers,

And famylies, ynstedde of wytte, theie trace;
Nowe poesie canne meete wythe ne regrate,
Whylste prose, and herehaughtrie, ryse yn estate.

Lette kynges, and rulers, whan heie gayne a
[sieres bore,
Shew whatt theyre grandsieres, and great grand-
Emarschalled armes, yatte, ne before theyre


Now raung'd wythe whatt yeir fadres han before;
Lette trades, and toune folck, lett syke thynges
Ne fyghte for sable yn a fielde of aure; [alone,
Seldomm, or never, are armes vyrtues mede,
Shee nillynge to take myckle aie dothe hede1.

A man ascaunse uponn a piece maye looke,
And shake bys hedde 5 to styrre hys rede aboute;
Quod he, gyf I askaunted oere thys booke,
Schulde fynde thereyn that trouthe ys left wyth-
Eke, gyf ynto a vew percase I tooke [oute;
The longe beade-rolle of al the wrytynge route,
Asserius, Ingolphus, Torgotte, Bedde,
Thorow hem al nete lyche ytte I coulde rede.-
Pardon, yee graiebarbes, gyff I saie, onwise
Yee are to stycke so close and bysmarelie
To hystorie; you doe ytte tooe moche pryze,
Whyche amenused thoughtes of poesie; [alyse,
Somme drybblette share you shoulde to
Nott makynge everyche thynge bee hystorie;

Notte syke as doe annoie thys age so sore,
A keppened poyntelle restynge at eche lyne.
Vearse maie be goode, boite poesie wantes more,
An onlist lecturn, and a songe adygne;
Accordynge to the rule I have thys wroughte,
Gyff ytt please Canynge, I care notte a groate.
The thynge ytte moste bee yttes owne defense;
Som metre maie notte please a womannes ear.
Canynge lookes notte for poesie, botte sense;
And dygne, and wordie thoughtes, ys all hys care.
Canynge, adieu! I do you greete from hence;
Full soone I hope to taste of your good cheere;
Goode byshoppe Carpynter dyd byd mee saie,
Hee wysche you healthe and selinesse for aie.


SOMME cherisaunei tys to gentle mynde,
Whan heie have chevyced theyre londe from
Whan theie ar dedd, theie leave yer name be-
And theyre goode deedes doe on the Earthe re-


Downe yn the grave wee ynhyme everych steyne, Whylest al her gentleness ys made to sheene, Lyche fetyve baubels geasonne to be seene. yattella, the wardenne of thys castell stede,

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Mee, happeless me, hee wylle a wretche behoulde, [chaunces chayne. Mieselfe, and al that's myne, bounde ynne mys

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Awhylst thie merryemen dydde laughe and jeaste,
Onn mee thou semest all eyne, to me 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 com-

Whie art thou nott as coarse as odhers are?

Offe scarpes of scarlette, and fyne paramente, Botte thenn thie soughle woulde throwe thy vysage I saie ytt, I moste streve thatt you ameded bee. All thie yntente to please was lyssed to mee,


Mie lyttle kyndnesses whych I dydd doe,
Thie gentleness doth corven them soe grete,
Lyche bawsyn olyphauntes mie gnattes doe

Thou doest mie thoughtes of paying love amate.
Botte hann mie actyonns straughte the rolle of
[down to thee,
Pyghte thee from Hell, or brought Heaven
Layde the whol worlde a falldstole atte thie fecte,
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.

Ah! Birtha, whie did Nature frame thee fayre? Whie art thou all thatt poyntelle canne bewreene1?


Yatt shemres on thie comelie semlykeene,
Lyche nottebrowne cloudes, whann bie the
Sonne made redde,

Orr scarlette, wyth waylde lynnen clothe ywreene, [spreedde. Syke would thie spryte upponn thie vysage Thys daie brave Ella dothe thyne honde and harte [moste parte. Clayme as hys owne to be, whyche nee fromm hys And cann I lyve to see herr wythe anere! Ytte cannotte, muste notte, naie, ytt shalle not bee. [beere, Thys nyghte I'll putte stronge poysonn ynn the And hynım, herr, and myselfe, attenes wyll slea. Assyst mee Helle! lette devylles rounde mee tende, [friende. To slea mieselfe, mie love, and eke mie doughtie ELLA, BIRTHA


Notte, whanne the hallie prieste dyd make me knyghte,

Blessynge the weaponne, tellynge future dede, Howe bie mie honde the prevyd Dane shoulde blede, [fyghte; Howe I schulde often bee, and often wynne ynne Notte, whann I fyrste behelde thie beauteous hue, [softer soule; Whyche strooke mie mynde, and rouzed my 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,
Whann hallie preest, the lechemanne of the

Dydd knytte us both ynn a caytysnede vowe:
Now hallie Ella's selynesse ys grate;
Shap haveth nowe ymade hys woes for to emmate.

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As manie tyines 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 faifullie to mee.

Ofte have I seene thee atte the none-daie feaste, Whanne deysde bie thieselfe, for wante of pheeres,

1 Is she not more than painting can express? Fair Penitent.


Love, doe notte rate your achevments soe smalle;
As I to you, syke love untoe mee beare;
For nothynge paste will Birtha ever call,
Ne on a foode from Heaven thynke to cheere.
As farr as thys frayle brutylle flesch wylle
Syke, and ne fardher I expecte of you; [spere,
Be notte toe slack yn love, ne overdeare; [true.
A smalle fyre, yan a loud flame, proves more


Thie gentle wordis toe thie volunde kenne
To bee moe clergionde thann ys ynn meyncte of




Alle blessynges showre on gentle Ella's hedde; Oft maie the Moone, yn sylverr sheenynge lyghte,

Inne varied chaunges varyed blessynges shedde, Besprengeynge far abrode mischaunces nyghte; And thou, fayre Birtha! thou, fayre dame, so bryghte, [peace, Long mayest thou wyth Ella fynde muche Wythe selynesse as wyth a roabe, be dyghte, Wyth everych chaungynge mone new joies enI, as a token of mie love to speake, [crease! Have brought you jubbes of ale, at nyghte youre brayne to breake.

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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.


Angelles bee wrogte to bee of neidher kynde; Angelles alleyne fromme chafe desyre bee free; Dheere ys a somwhatte evere yn the mynde, Yatte, wythout wommanne, cannot stylled bee, Ne seyncte yn celles, botte, havynge blodde and tere, [fayre: Do fynde the spryte to joie on syghte of womanne Wommen bee made, notte for hemselves botte manne,

Bone of hys bone, and chyld of hys desire; Fromme an ynutylle membere fyrste begaune, Ywroghte with moche of water, lyttele fyre; Therefore theie seke the fyre of love, to hete The milkyness of kynde, and make hemselfes complete.

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"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, [nynge. Mie lorde fadres barbde3 haulle han ne wyn"Eche mornynge I ryse, doe 1 sette mie maydennes, [bleachynge, Somme to spynn, somme to curdell, somme 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."

3 Bardé, barbed or trapped, as a great horse Bardes, barbes or trappings for horses of service or of show. Cotgrave. The word is peculiarly appropriated to horses, and therefore misapplied here.


Shee sayde, and lorde Thomas came over the lea, As hee the fatte derkynnes was charynge, [shee; Shee putte uppe her knittynge, and to hym wente So wee leave hem bothe kyndelie embracynge.


I lyche eke thys; goe ynn 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, we wylle toe spouse-fcaste goe, [everych woe. And there ynn ale and wyne bee drey noted ÆLLA, BIRTHa, Celmonde, MESSENGERE.


Ella, 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 [ryne, Thou shalte nott, must not, from thie Birtha Botte kenn the dynne of slughorues from afarre.



O love, was thys thie joie, to shewe the treate, Then groffyshe to forbydde thie hongered guestes

to eate?

O mie upswalynge harte, what words can saie The peynes, thatte passethe yon 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 loade of pevne?
Moste wee aie holde yn chace the shade content,
And for a bodykyn1 a swarthe obteyne?

O! whie, yee seynctes, oppress yee thos mie sowle? [dreeric dole? How shalle I speke mie woe, mie freme, mie


Sometyme the wyseste lacketh pore mans rede. Reasonue and counynge wytte efte flees awaie. Thanne, loverde lette me saie, wyth hommaged drede,

(Bieneth your fote ylayn) mie counselle saie; Gyff thos wee lett the matter lethlen laie,

4 This diminutive never was used as a mere synonym of its original word. Dean Miles adduces God's bodikins. This oath cannot be received in evidence.


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No, thou schalte never leave thie Birtha's syde:
Ne schall the wynde uponne us blowe alleyne;
1, lyche a uedere, wylle untoe thee byde;
Tyde lyfe, tyde deathe, ytte shall behoulde us

I have mie parte of drierie dole and peyne;
Itte brasteth from mee atte the holtred eyne;
Ynne tydes of teares mie swarthynge spryte wyll

Gyff drerie dole ys thyne, tys twa tymes myne. Goe notte, O Alla; 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 shake the bloddie swerde and steyned spere.


Can Ella from hys breaste hys Birtha teare? Is shee so rou and ugsomme to bys syghte? Entrykeynge wyght! ys leathall warre so deare? Thou pryzest mee belowe the joies of fyghte. Thou scalte notte leave mee, albeytte the erthe Hong pendaunte bie thy swerde, and craved for thy morthe.


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 lord the kynge.


Dyddest thou kenne howe mie woes, as starres

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 seiynesse I pryze thee moe yan all [quyre,
Heaven can mee sende, or counynge wytt ac-
Ytte 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
Wythe them a mynnute wurchethe bane for
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 soine doughtie power,
To royn yttes royners, make yttes foemenne

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