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[leaf 199]



Al þyse maydenes, wyb-out bost,
Hy berep god in here goste,

In hare holy pouzt[e];
Ac hy wyb-oute mannes ymone
In body, and nauzt in gost a-lone,
To manne hyne broute.

Of hyre þat hys pos dygne of take,
Hou myzte ich of hyre songes make,

bat am so foul of lyue ?
And bou me bede, soster, synge,
And alle in-to one songe brynge

Here swete iogen fyue.

How can I, so foul, sing of Mary ?


Yet, sister, you bid me do so.


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29. alone, MS. aboue (Wr. corr.).

31. of take, read op-take, assumpta ? Mätzner writes of lake (0.E. lāc, gift, offering).

34. And, read Ac? (Kölbing's conjecture).

42. hy hy[t], MS. hy hy; Mätzner omits one hy.wole, distinctly so in MS.; Wr. wolde.

45. hys (not hyt) in MS.

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And al[le] comep of pe blysse
pat hye hep nou, wyb-oute mysse,
So stremes of be welle.

he wylle þat hys in paradys
Fol wel by-toknep þys auys,

Wyp here stremes foure,
bet ornep out ouer al bat londe,
Nys neuer erblyche man þat fond
Hou fele come of þe stoure.

þys wulle hys god self man by-come,
Of hym þys ioyen bep alle y-nome,

And alle ine uour manere : be furste was wyþ concepcioun, bo þe angel gabryel come a-doun Ine stede of messager[e],

To brynge pe tyþynge by-fore
pat cryst of hyre wolde by bore,

Mannes trespas to zelde,
For to brynge ous out of helle :
Wo mytte penche oper telle
Wat ioye per y uelde !

In nazareth, pe ryche toun,
Aue maria was þat soun

Of gabrieles steuene;
ho was þat mayde wel ygret,
And wyþ a present wel ageet
Fram vader oure of heuene.

So he was ine hyre ycome,
For fleasch and blod of hyre to nome,

Ase be angel hyre seyde;

brought her the tidings that Christ

should be 69 boru of her,


and greeted her with Ave Maria.'





52. of þe, MS. ofte þe (Mätzner corr.). 59. Nys, read Nes?
63. uour, MS. nout, Mätzner noue = new; but cp. 1. 49.
71. An o has been cancelled after mytte.
76. wel is the reading of the MS.; Wr. was.
77. wel ageet, Mätzner weleget (for weleged), enriched; see note.

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So she conceived Him without breaking her vow of clean maidenhood.


Saint John
the Baptist
leaped in
his mother's

(leaf 200]
wornb, when
she spoke
to her.




. 96

Ne hy of mannes mone neste,
Ne hy ne brek nauzt hyre by-heste,
Ac euere clene a mayde.

Seynt johan þe baptyst on-bore,
bo hy spek hys moder by-fore,

Ine ioye he gan to asprynge.
Elyzabet wel þat aspyde,
Hou a spylede onder hyre syde,
And made hys reioyynge.

More encheyson hadde oure leuedy
Ioyous and blype for to by,

Wyp-oute prede and boste;
For in hyre selue hy hyne fredde,
Fol wel hy wyste hou [hy] hyne hedde
pory self þe holy goste.

Ioseph kedde þat he was mylde,
bo þat he wyste hy was wyþ chylde,

A-wey he wolde alone;
Ha nolde nauzt he were a-slawe,
Ne forbe y-iuged by be lawe
To by stend wyþ stone.

Ac ioseph was wel blype, aplyzt,
po to hym cam pe angel bryzt,

To segge hym wat he scholde ;
Wel blyþþere myzte be þat may,
hat was y-conforted al day
Wyp aungeles wanne hy wolde.

In þyssere ioye we scholde by-louken
Al hyre ioyen of uourti woken

he wylest he zede wyþ chylde.

Joseph, knowing her with child,


would not
have her
stoned to
death, accord-
ing to the


and rejoiced
when the
to himn.




In this joy should be included all her other joys while going with child.


84. Ac, read As? 89. hyre, MS. hys (Mätzner corr.). 92. by, MS. be. 95. [hy] inserted by Mätzner. 100. he · hy; so, too, l. 111. 104. þo, MS. So.

Of hyre [barme) hyt was god game,
her-inne bet vnicorn weks tame
þat er þan was so wylde.

(20. ii.).


Þet oper jove of hyre ycore

The second joy she had at the birth of Christ.

She had conceived Him without the

80 He was

Was of ihesus, of hyre ybore A crystemasse nyzte,

117 [leaf 200, bk.] Wyb-oute sorze, wyb-oute sore; And so ne schal þer neuer more Wymman wypchilde dyzte.

120 (21) For so hy hyne scholde ferst auonge, ber nes no senne per amonge,

taint of sin; Ne noe flesches lykynge ;

123 per-fore of hyre y-bore he was,

brought forth

as the sun Ase pe sonne passezt þorz be glas

passes Wyb-outen on openynge.

126 through

glass. (22) In suapebendes hy hyne dyzte, Ase hyt hys be chyldes ryzte, And zef hym melk to souke;

129 baz hyt were pustre of nyzt, ber nas wane of no lyzt, He heuene gan onlouke.

132 (23) Out com an aungel wyþ great leem (122)

announced by In-to pe feld of bedleem,

the angel to

the shepherds Amonges þe schepherden,

135 in the field of Te telle þat cryst was y bore; ber come singinde per-fore Of angeles manye verden.

138 (24) þanne sede he swybe wel

So it proved Gracia plena, gabryel,

Mary was And þat hys " fol of grace";

His birth was


true that

141 grace.' 112. See note.

114. þan, MS. þang. 120. dyzte, Mätzner proposes be dyzle. Perhaps we ought to read hyt dyzte.

122. nes (Mätener nas), MS. nys. 126. Omission of on proposed by Matzner. 133. leem, second e, being written close to the m, looks like o in MS. 135. schep-, MS. schop?

full of

The ox and ass in the stable, seeing their Creator

[leaf 201]

circumcised, and named

Great was

Wanne glorye of hyre hys fol a-boue,
And pays igrad for hyre loue
Of angeles in place.

be oxe and asse in hare manyour,
bo þat hy sezen hare creatour
Lyggynde in hare forage,

147 lying in the

Al one-knowynge þaz hy were, manger, rejoiced in Hy makede ioye in hare manere, their way. And eke in hare langage.


(26) On the eighth Ope pe heze eztynde day day He was

He onder-zede þe gywen lay,
And was ycircumcysed.

Iesus me clepede hyne per-uore,
Ase aungeles, er he were y bore,
Hys eldren hadde y-wysed.

156 (27) Mochele ioye hy aspyde, Mary's joy

be kynges pre þat come ryde three Kings Fram be easte wel iverre;

159 gitts;

Gold, myrre, stor, were here offrynges, (123)
bat he was lord and kyng of kynges
Wel by-toknede pe sterre.


and Simeon, po þat he scholde y-offred by
was presented In þe templo domini,
in the temple,
Ase laze zef þe termes,

Symeon, þe olde man, gan crye,
And spek of hym fur prophecye,
And tok hym ine hys earmes.

168 (29) ho he was bote twelf wynter ald, years old,

And hez ine pe temple he seat wel bald,
And þaz he speke smale,

171 146. crcatour, MS. creature. 159. Wr. i-verre, MS. werre (distinctly). 163. by, MS. be.

164. templo, so MS. 167. fur = for (Mätzner); or ought we to read þor3 (also spelt pour3) ? 169. he, MS. 3e. 170. And (= An) hez, MS. hez he, but the he has been cancelled.

when the

from the East offered their

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when He

of Him.

And when He was twelve

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